WorldWideScience

Sample records for underlying causal mechanisms

  1. A possible realization of Einstein's causal theory underlying quantum mechanics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yussouff, M.

    1979-06-01

    It is shown that a new microscopic mechanics formulated earlier can be looked upon as a possible causal theory underlying quantum mechanics, which removes Einstein's famous objections against quantum theory. This approach is free from objections raised against Bohm's hidden variable theory and leads to a clear physical picture in terms of familiar concepts, if self interactions are held responsible for deviations from classical behaviour. The new level of physics unfolded by this approach may reveal novel frontiers in high-energy physics. (author)

  2. Explaining through causal mechanisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Biesbroek, Robbert; Dupuis, Johann; Wellstead, Adam

    2017-01-01

    This paper synthesizes and builds on recent critiques of the resilience literature; namely that the field has largely been unsuccessful in capturing the complexity of governance processes, in particular cause–effects relationships. We demonstrate that absence of a causal model is reflected in the

  3. Identification and Sensitivity Analysis for Average Causal Mediation Effects with Time-Varying Treatments and Mediators: Investigating the Underlying Mechanisms of Kindergarten Retention Policy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Soojin; Steiner, Peter M; Kaplan, David

    2018-03-01

    Considering that causal mechanisms unfold over time, it is important to investigate the mechanisms over time, taking into account the time-varying features of treatments and mediators. However, identification of the average causal mediation effect in the presence of time-varying treatments and mediators is often complicated by time-varying confounding. This article aims to provide a novel approach to uncovering causal mechanisms in time-varying treatments and mediators in the presence of time-varying confounding. We provide different strategies for identification and sensitivity analysis under homogeneous and heterogeneous effects. Homogeneous effects are those in which each individual experiences the same effect, and heterogeneous effects are those in which the effects vary over individuals. Most importantly, we provide an alternative definition of average causal mediation effects that evaluates a partial mediation effect; the effect that is mediated by paths other than through an intermediate confounding variable. We argue that this alternative definition allows us to better assess at least a part of the mediated effect and provides meaningful and unique interpretations. A case study using ECLS-K data that evaluates kindergarten retention policy is offered to illustrate our proposed approach.

  4. Causal structure in categorical quantum mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lal, Raymond Ashwin

    Categorical quantum mechanics is a way of formalising the structural features of quantum theory using category theory. It uses compound systems as the primitive notion, which is formalised by using symmetric monoidal categories. This leads to an elegant formalism for describing quantum protocols such as quantum teleportation. In particular, categorical quantum mechanics provides a graphical calculus that exposes the information flow of such protocols in an intuitive way. However, the graphical calculus also reveals surprising features of these protocols; for example, in the quantum teleportation protocol, information appears to flow `backwards-in-time'. This leads to question of how causal structure can be described within categorical quantum mechanics, and how this might lead to insight regarding the structural compatibility between quantum theory and relativity. This thesis is concerned with the project of formalising causal structure in categorical quantum mechanics. We begin by studying an abstract view of Bell-type experiments, as described by `no-signalling boxes', and we show that under time-reversal no-signalling boxes generically become signalling. This conflicts with the underlying symmetry of relativistic causal structure. This leads us to consider the framework of categorical quantum mechanics from the perspective of relativistic causal structure. We derive the properties that a symmetric monoidal category must satisfy in order to describe systems in such a background causal structure. We use these properties to define a new type of category, and this provides a formal framework for describing protocols in spacetime. We explore this new structure, showing how it leads to an understanding of the counter-intuitive information flow of protocols in categorical quantum mechanics. We then find that the formal properties of our new structure are naturally related to axioms for reconstructing quantum theory, and we show how a reconstruction scheme based on

  5. De Broglie's causal interpretations of quantum mechanics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    YOAV Ben-Dov

    1989-01-01

    In this article we trace the history of de Broglie's two causal interpretations of quantum mechanics, namely the double solution and the pilot wave theories, at the two periods in which he developed them: 1924-27 and 1952 onwards. Examining the reasons for which he always preferred the first theory to the second, reasons that are mainly concerned with the question of the physical nature of the quantum wave function, we try to show the continuity and the coherence of his underlying vision

  6. Child Care Subsidy Use and Child Development: Potential Causal Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkinson, Laura E.

    2011-01-01

    Research using an experimental design is needed to provide firm causal evidence on the impacts of child care subsidy use on child development, and on underlying causal mechanisms since subsidies can affect child development only indirectly via changes they cause in children's early experiences. However, before costly experimental research is…

  7. Special Relativity, Causality and Quantum Mechanics-2

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 11; Issue 9. Special Relativity, Causality and Quantum Mechanics - 2. Guruprasad Kar Samir Kunkri Sujit K Choudhary. General Article Volume 11 Issue 9 ... Keywords. Causality; quantum entanglement; cloning; local realism; completely positive maps.

  8. Selecting appropriate cases when tracing causal mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Beach, Derek; Pedersen, Rasmus Brun

    2016-01-01

    The last decade has witnessed resurgence in the interest in studying the causal mechanisms linking causes and outcomes in the social sciences. This article explores the overlooked implications for case selection when tracing mechanisms using in-depth case studies. Our argument is that existing case...... selection guidelines are appropriate for research aimed at making cross-case claims about causal relationships, where case selection is primarily used to control for other causes. However, existing guidelines are not in alignment with case-based research that aims to trace mechanisms, where the goal...... is to unpack the causal mechanism between X and Y, enabling causal inferences to be made because empirical evidence is provided for how the mechanism actually operated in a particular case. The in-depth, within-case tracing of how mechanisms operate in particular cases produces what can be termed mechanistic...

  9. Localization and causality in relativistic quantum mechanics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perez, J.F.; Wilde, I.F.

    It is shown that in relativistic quantum mechanics there is no criterion for the strict localization of a state in a bounded space-time region compatible with causality, translation covariance and the spectral condition (or positivity of energy together with Lorentz covariance) [pt

  10. Special Relativity, Causality and Quantum Mechanics - 2

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Peaceful Coexistence of Special Relativity and. Quantum Mechanics. As discussed in Part 1, in the framework of the special theory of relativity, causality holds. This can be stated as follows: there is a finite speed for any signal, i.e. , for anything that carries information, and the highest speed for any signal is identical to the ...

  11. Introducing mechanics by tapping core causal knowledge

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klaassen, C.W.J.M.; Westra, A.S.; Emmett, K.M.; Eijkelhof, H.M.C.; Lijnse, P.L.

    2008-01-01

    This article concerns an outline of an introductory mechanics course. It is based on the argument that various uses of the concept of force (e.g. from Kepler, Newton and everyday life) share an explanatory strategy based on core causal knowledge. The strategy consists of (a) the idea that a force

  12. Special Relativity, Causality and Quantum Mechanics - 2

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    tum world. An example of a game which can be won exploiting quantum entanglement, but which can never be won classically, is described. Peaceful Coexistence of Special Relativity and. Quantum Mechanics. As discussed in Part 1, in the framework of the special theory of relativity, causality holds. This can be stated.

  13. Pathway Analysis and the Search for Causal Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weller, Nicholas; Barnes, Jeb

    2016-01-01

    The study of causal mechanisms interests scholars across the social sciences. Case studies can be a valuable tool in developing knowledge and hypotheses about how causal mechanisms function. The usefulness of case studies in the search for causal mechanisms depends on effective case selection, and there are few existing guidelines for selecting…

  14. Introducing mechanics by tapping core causal knowledge

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Klaassen, Kees; Westra, Axel; Emmett, Katrina; Eijkelhof, Harrie; Lijnse, Piet

    2008-01-01

    This article concerns an outline of an introductory mechanics course. It is based on the argument that various uses of the concept of force (e.g. from Kepler, Newton and everyday life) share an explanatory strategy based on core causal knowledge. The strategy consists of (a) the idea that a force causes a deviation from how an object would move of its own accord (i.e. its force-free motion), and (b) an incentive to search, where the motion deviates from the assumed force-free motion, for recurring configurations with which such deviations can be correlated (interaction theory). Various assumptions can be made concerning both the force-free motion and the interaction theory, thus giving rise to a variety of specific explanations. Kepler's semi-implicit intuition about the force-free motion is rest, Newton's explicit assumption is uniform rectilinear motion, while in everyday explanations a diversity of pragmatic suggestions can be recognized. The idea is that the explanatory strategy, once made explicit by drawing on students' intuitive causal knowledge, can be made to function for students as an advance organizer, in the sense of a general scheme that they recognize but do not yet know how to detail for scientific purposes

  15. Special Relativity, Causality and Quantum Mechanics - 1

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    information theory in general and quantum non-locality and entanglement in particular. Right. S Kunkri - current research interest is the role of entanglement in quantum information processing and the connection between quantum operations and causality. Centre. S K Choudhary - current research interest is the study of ...

  16. Special Relativity, Causality and Quantum Mechanics - 1

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    We discuss the significance of Einstein's second postulate of the special theory of relativity (STR) stipulating the constancy of the speed of light in vacuum. The causality that follows from the. STR may be a more general principle to orga- nize our knowledge of all phenomena. In partic- ular, quantum dynamics can be derived ...

  17. Quantum causality conceptual issues in the causal theory of quantum mechanics

    CERN Document Server

    Riggs, Peter J; French, Steven RD

    2009-01-01

    This is a treatise devoted to the foundations of quantum physics and the role that causality plays in the microscopic world governed by the laws of quantum mechanics. The book is controversial and will engender some lively debate on the various issues raised.

  18. Underlying Mechanisms Affecting Institutionalisation of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This paper discusses the underlying causal mechanisms that enabled or constrained institutionalisation of environmental education in 12 institutions in eight countries in southern Africa. The study was carried out in the context of the Southern Africa Development Community Regional Environmental Education Support ...

  19. Underlying Mechanisms Affecting Institutionalisation of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    doctoral study and draws on critical realism as the ontological lens. Data analysis was done by means of a retroductive mode of inference, as articulated by Danermark, Ekström, Jakosben and Karlsson (2002). The paper demonstrates that there are a number of underlying causal mechanisms, which may enable or.

  20. Causality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearl, Judea

    2000-03-01

    Written by one of the pre-eminent researchers in the field, this book provides a comprehensive exposition of modern analysis of causation. It shows how causality has grown from a nebulous concept into a mathematical theory with significant applications in the fields of statistics, artificial intelligence, philosophy, cognitive science, and the health and social sciences. Pearl presents a unified account of the probabilistic, manipulative, counterfactual and structural approaches to causation, and devises simple mathematical tools for analyzing the relationships between causal connections, statistical associations, actions and observations. The book will open the way for including causal analysis in the standard curriculum of statistics, artifical intelligence, business, epidemiology, social science and economics. Students in these areas will find natural models, simple identification procedures, and precise mathematical definitions of causal concepts that traditional texts have tended to evade or make unduly complicated. This book will be of interest to professionals and students in a wide variety of fields. Anyone who wishes to elucidate meaningful relationships from data, predict effects of actions and policies, assess explanations of reported events, or form theories of causal understanding and causal speech will find this book stimulating and invaluable.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewing, Tracy S.

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

  2. Global and local aspects of causality in quantum mechanics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stoica Cristinel

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Quantum mechanics forces us to reconsider certain aspects of classical causality. The ‘central mystery’ of quantum mechanics manifests in different ways, depending on the interpretation. This mystery can be formulated as the possibility of selecting part of the initial conditions of the Universe ‘retroactively’. This talk aims to show that there is a global, timeless, ‘bird’s view’ of the spacetime, which makes this mystery more reasonable. We will review some well-known quantum effects from the perspective of global consistency.

  3. Ecological Interventionist Causal Models in Psychosis: Targeting Psychological Mechanisms in Daily Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reininghaus, Ulrich; Depp, Colin A; Myin-Germeys, Inez

    2016-03-01

    Integrated models of psychotic disorders have posited a number of putative psychological mechanisms that may contribute to the development of psychotic symptoms, but it is only recently that a modest amount of experience sampling research has provided evidence on their role in daily life, outside the research laboratory. A number of methodological challenges remain in evaluating specificity of potential causal links between a given psychological mechanism and psychosis outcomes in a systematic fashion, capitalizing on longitudinal data to investigate temporal ordering. In this article, we argue for testing ecological interventionist causal models that draw on real world and real-time delivered, ecological momentary interventions for generating evidence on several causal criteria (association, time order, and direction/sole plausibility) under real-world conditions, while maximizing generalizability to social contexts and experiences in heterogeneous populations. Specifically, this approach tests whether ecological momentary interventions can (1) modify a putative mechanism and (2) produce changes in the mechanism that lead to sustainable changes in intended psychosis outcomes in individuals' daily lives. Future research using this approach will provide translational evidence on the active ingredients of mobile health and in-person interventions that promote sustained effectiveness of ecological momentary interventions and, thereby, contribute to ongoing efforts that seek to enhance effectiveness of psychological interventions under real-world conditions. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Bayesian detection of causal rare variants under posterior consistency.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faming Liang

    Full Text Available Identification of causal rare variants that are associated with complex traits poses a central challenge on genome-wide association studies. However, most current research focuses only on testing the global association whether the rare variants in a given genomic region are collectively associated with the trait. Although some recent work, e.g., the Bayesian risk index method, have tried to address this problem, it is unclear whether the causal rare variants can be consistently identified by them in the small-n-large-P situation. We develop a new Bayesian method, the so-called Bayesian Rare Variant Detector (BRVD, to tackle this problem. The new method simultaneously addresses two issues: (i (Global association test Are there any of the variants associated with the disease, and (ii (Causal variant detection Which variants, if any, are driving the association. The BRVD ensures the causal rare variants to be consistently identified in the small-n-large-P situation by imposing some appropriate prior distributions on the model and model specific parameters. The numerical results indicate that the BRVD is more powerful for testing the global association than the existing methods, such as the combined multivariate and collapsing test, weighted sum statistic test, RARECOVER, sequence kernel association test, and Bayesian risk index, and also more powerful for identification of causal rare variants than the Bayesian risk index method. The BRVD has also been successfully applied to the Early-Onset Myocardial Infarction (EOMI Exome Sequence Data. It identified a few causal rare variants that have been verified in the literature.

  5. Bayesian detection of causal rare variants under posterior consistency.

    KAUST Repository

    Liang, Faming

    2013-07-26

    Identification of causal rare variants that are associated with complex traits poses a central challenge on genome-wide association studies. However, most current research focuses only on testing the global association whether the rare variants in a given genomic region are collectively associated with the trait. Although some recent work, e.g., the Bayesian risk index method, have tried to address this problem, it is unclear whether the causal rare variants can be consistently identified by them in the small-n-large-P situation. We develop a new Bayesian method, the so-called Bayesian Rare Variant Detector (BRVD), to tackle this problem. The new method simultaneously addresses two issues: (i) (Global association test) Are there any of the variants associated with the disease, and (ii) (Causal variant detection) Which variants, if any, are driving the association. The BRVD ensures the causal rare variants to be consistently identified in the small-n-large-P situation by imposing some appropriate prior distributions on the model and model specific parameters. The numerical results indicate that the BRVD is more powerful for testing the global association than the existing methods, such as the combined multivariate and collapsing test, weighted sum statistic test, RARECOVER, sequence kernel association test, and Bayesian risk index, and also more powerful for identification of causal rare variants than the Bayesian risk index method. The BRVD has also been successfully applied to the Early-Onset Myocardial Infarction (EOMI) Exome Sequence Data. It identified a few causal rare variants that have been verified in the literature.

  6. The Importance of Specifying and Studying Causal Mechanisms in School-Based Randomised Controlled Trials: Lessons from Two Studies of Cross-Age Peer Tutoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Stephen P.; Edovald, Triin; Lloyd, Cheryl; Kiss, Zsolt

    2016-01-01

    Based on the experience of evaluating 2 cross-age peer-tutoring interventions, we argue that researchers need to pay greater attention to causal mechanisms within the context of school-based randomised controlled trials. Without studying mechanisms, researchers are less able to explain the underlying causal processes that give rise to results from…

  7. Neural Correlates of Causal Power Judgments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denise Dellarosa Cummins

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Causal inference is a fundamental component of cognition and perception. Probabilistic theories of causal judgment (most notably causal Bayes networks derive causal judgments using metrics that integrate contingency information. But human estimates typically diverge from these normative predictions. This is because human causal power judgments are typically strongly influenced by beliefs concerning underlying causal mechanisms, and because of the way knowledge is retrieved from human memory during the judgment process. Neuroimaging studies indicate that the brain distinguishes causal events from mere covariation, and between perceived and inferred causality. Areas involved in error prediction are also activated, implying automatic activation of possible exception cases during causal decision-making.

  8. Child abuse: underlying mechanisms

    OpenAIRE

    Martínez, Gladys S.

    2009-01-01

    Exposure to traumatic stress during childhood, in the form of abuse or neglect, is related to an increased vulnerability resulting in the development of several pathologies, this relation has been confi rmed by epidemiological studies; however, the neural mechanisms underlying such abnormalities are still unknown. Most of the research done has focused on the effects in the infant, and only recently it has begun to focus on the neurobiological changes in the abusive parents. In this article, I...

  9. Misleading Children: Causal Attributions of Inconsistency under Repeated Questioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegal, Michael; And Others

    1988-01-01

    Four studies investigated whether inconsistency of children aged four to six on developmental tasks may reflect a misinterpretation of the experimenter's intent in communication under repeated questioning. (SKC)

  10. A quantum causal discovery algorithm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giarmatzi, Christina; Costa, Fabio

    2018-03-01

    Finding a causal model for a set of classical variables is now a well-established task—but what about the quantum equivalent? Even the notion of a quantum causal model is controversial. Here, we present a causal discovery algorithm for quantum systems. The input to the algorithm is a process matrix describing correlations between quantum events. Its output consists of different levels of information about the underlying causal model. Our algorithm determines whether the process is causally ordered by grouping the events into causally ordered non-signaling sets. It detects if all relevant common causes are included in the process, which we label Markovian, or alternatively if some causal relations are mediated through some external memory. For a Markovian process, it outputs a causal model, namely the causal relations and the corresponding mechanisms, represented as quantum states and channels. Our algorithm opens the route to more general quantum causal discovery methods.

  11. Patterns of Evolutionary Speed: In Search of a Causal Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Len N. Gillman

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The “integrated evolutionary speed hypothesis” proposes that the rate of genetic evolution influences all major biogeographical patterns of diversity including those associated with temperature, water availability, productivity, spatial heterogeneity and area. Consistent with this theory, rates of genetic evolution correspond with patterns of diversity and diversification. Here we review the mechanisms that have been proposed to explain these biogeographic patterns in rates of genetic evolution. Tests of several proposed mechanisms have produced equivocal results, whereas others such as those invoking annual metabolic activity, or a “Red Queen” effect, remain unexplored. However, rates of genetic evolution have been associated with both productivity mediated rates of germ cell division and active metabolic rates and these explanations therefore justify further empirical investigation.

  12. Causal mechanisms of masked hypertension: socio-psychological aspects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogedegbe, Gbenga

    2010-04-01

    The contribution of Dr Thomas Pickering's study to the measurement of blood pressure (BP) is the defining aspect of his academic career and achievement - narrowly defined. In this regard, two important areas characterized his study as it relates to masked hypertension. First, he introduced the term, masked hypertension, to replace the rather inappropriate term 'reverse white-coat hypertension' and 'white-coat normotension'; thus drawing attention to the fact that these patients are genuinely hypertensive by ambulatory BP but were missed by normal office BP. More importantly, he rightly maintained that masked hypertension is a true continuum of sustained hypertension rather than an aberrant measurement artifact. Second, is his pivotal study on the important role of psychosocial factors as a potential mechanism for the development of masked hypertension. In this regard, he explained masked hypertension as a conditioned response to anxiety in office settings, and highlighted the role that diagnostic labeling plays in its development. His view of masked hypertension is that of a continuum from prehypertension (based on office BP measurement) to masked hypertension (based on ambulatory BP) and finally to sustained hypertension (based on both office and ambulatory BP). He strongly believes that it is the prehypertensive patients who progress to masked hypertension. Subsequently, patients who are prehypertensive should be screened for masked hypertension and treated. In this manuscript, we summarize his study as it relates to the definition of masked hypertension, the psychosocial characteristics, mechanisms and its clinical relevance.

  13. Network interactions underlying mirror feedback in stroke: A dynamic causal modeling study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soha Saleh

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Mirror visual feedback (MVF is potentially a powerful tool to facilitate recovery of disordered movement and stimulate activation of under-active brain areas due to stroke. The neural mechanisms underlying MVF have therefore been a focus of recent inquiry. Although it is known that sensorimotor areas can be activated via mirror feedback, the network interactions driving this effect remain unknown. The aim of the current study was to fill this gap by using dynamic causal modeling to test the interactions between regions in the frontal and parietal lobes that may be important for modulating the activation of the ipsilesional motor cortex during mirror visual feedback of unaffected hand movement in stroke patients. Our intent was to distinguish between two theoretical neural mechanisms that might mediate ipsilateral activation in response to mirror-feedback: transfer of information between bilateral motor cortices versus recruitment of regions comprising an action observation network which in turn modulate the motor cortex. In an event-related fMRI design, fourteen chronic stroke subjects performed goal-directed finger flexion movements with their unaffected hand while observing real-time visual feedback of the corresponding (veridical or opposite (mirror hand in virtual reality. Among 30 plausible network models that were tested, the winning model revealed significant mirror feedback-based modulation of the ipsilesional motor cortex arising from the contralesional parietal cortex, in a region along the rostral extent of the intraparietal sulcus. No winning model was identified for the veridical feedback condition. We discuss our findings in the context of supporting the latter hypothesis, that mirror feedback-based activation of motor cortex may be attributed to engagement of a contralateral (contralesional action observation network. These findings may have important implications for identifying putative cortical areas, which may be targeted with

  14. Kantian Causality and Quantum Quarks: The Compatibility between Quantum Mechanics and Kant’s Phenomenal World

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen R Palmquist

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Quantum indeterminism seems incompatible with Kant’s defense of causality in his Second Analogy. The Copenhagen interpretation also takes quantum theory as evidence for anti-realism. This first article of a two-part series argues that the law of causality, as transcendental, applies only to the world as observable, not to hypothetical (unobservable objects such as quarks, detectable only by high energy accelerators. Taking Planck’s constant and the speed of light as the lower and upper bounds of observability provides a way of interpreting the observables of quantum mechanics as empirically real even though they are transcendentally (i.e., pre-observationally ideal.

  15. Reconstructing constructivism: Causal models, Bayesian learning mechanisms and the theory theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopnik, Alison; Wellman, Henry M.

    2012-01-01

    We propose a new version of the “theory theory” grounded in the computational framework of probabilistic causal models and Bayesian learning. Probabilistic models allow a constructivist but rigorous and detailed approach to cognitive development. They also explain the learning of both more specific causal hypotheses and more abstract framework theories. We outline the new theoretical ideas, explain the computational framework in an intuitive and non-technical way, and review an extensive but relatively recent body of empirical results that supports these ideas. These include new studies of the mechanisms of learning. Children infer causal structure from statistical information, through their own actions on the world and through observations of the actions of others. Studies demonstrate these learning mechanisms in children from 16 months to 4 years old and include research on causal statistical learning, informal experimentation through play, and imitation and informal pedagogy. They also include studies of the variability and progressive character of intuitive theory change, particularly theory of mind. These studies investigate both the physical and psychological and social domains. We conclude with suggestions for further collaborative projects between developmental and computational cognitive scientists. PMID:22582739

  16. Reconstructing constructivism: causal models, Bayesian learning mechanisms, and the theory theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopnik, Alison; Wellman, Henry M

    2012-11-01

    We propose a new version of the "theory theory" grounded in the computational framework of probabilistic causal models and Bayesian learning. Probabilistic models allow a constructivist but rigorous and detailed approach to cognitive development. They also explain the learning of both more specific causal hypotheses and more abstract framework theories. We outline the new theoretical ideas, explain the computational framework in an intuitive and nontechnical way, and review an extensive but relatively recent body of empirical results that supports these ideas. These include new studies of the mechanisms of learning. Children infer causal structure from statistical information, through their own actions on the world and through observations of the actions of others. Studies demonstrate these learning mechanisms in children from 16 months to 4 years old and include research on causal statistical learning, informal experimentation through play, and imitation and informal pedagogy. They also include studies of the variability and progressive character of intuitive theory change, particularly theory of mind. These studies investigate both the physical and the psychological and social domains. We conclude with suggestions for further collaborative projects between developmental and computational cognitive scientists.

  17. Discovery of causal mechanisms: Oxidative phosphorylation and the Calvin-Benson cycle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholl, Raphael; Nickelsen, Kärin

    2015-06-01

    We investigate the context of discovery of two significant achievements of twentieth century biochemistry: the chemiosmotic mechanism of oxidative phosphorylation (proposed in 1961 by Peter Mitchell) and the dark reaction of photosynthesis (elucidated from 1946 to 1954 by Melvin Calvin and Andrew A. Benson). The pursuit of these problems involved discovery strategies such as the transfer, recombination and reversal of previous causal and mechanistic knowledge in biochemistry. We study the operation and scope of these strategies by careful historical analysis, reaching a number of systematic conclusions: (1) even basic strategies can illuminate "hard cases" of scientific discovery that go far beyond simple extrapolation or analogy; (2) the causal-mechanistic approach to discovery permits a middle course between the extremes of a completely substrate-neutral and a completely domain-specific view of scientific discovery; (3) the existing literature on mechanism discovery underemphasizes the role of combinatorial approaches in defining and exploring search spaces of possible problem solutions; (4) there is a subtle interplay between a fine-grained mechanistic and a more coarse-grained causal level of analysis, and both are needed to make discovery processes intelligible.

  18. Causal mechanisms of soil organic matter decomposition: deconstructing salinity and flooding impacts in coastal wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stagg, Camille L; Schoolmaster, Donald R; Krauss, Ken W; Cormier, Nicole; Conner, William H

    2017-08-01

    Coastal wetlands significantly contribute to global carbon storage potential. Sea-level rise and other climate-change-induced disturbances threaten coastal wetland sustainability and carbon storage capacity. It is critical that we understand the mechanisms controlling wetland carbon loss so that we can predict and manage these resources in anticipation of climate change. However, our current understanding of the mechanisms that control soil organic matter decomposition, in particular the impacts of elevated salinity, are limited, and literature reports are contradictory. In an attempt to improve our understanding of these complex processes, we measured root and rhizome decomposition and developed a causal model to identify and quantify the mechanisms that influence soil organic matter decomposition in coastal wetlands that are impacted by sea-level rise. We identified three causal pathways: (1) a direct pathway representing the effects of flooding on soil moisture, (2) a direct pathway representing the effects of salinity on decomposer microbial communities and soil biogeochemistry, and (3) an indirect pathway representing the effects of salinity on litter quality through changes in plant community composition over time. We used this model to test the effects of alternate scenarios on the response of tidal freshwater forested wetlands and oligohaline marshes to short- and long-term climate-induced disturbances of flooding and salinity. In tidal freshwater forested wetlands, the model predicted less decomposition in response to drought, hurricane salinity pulsing, and long-term sea-level rise. In contrast, in the oligohaline marsh, the model predicted no change in response to drought and sea-level rise, and increased decomposition following a hurricane salinity pulse. Our results show that it is critical to consider the temporal scale of disturbance and the magnitude of exposure when assessing the effects of salinity intrusion on carbon mineralization in coastal

  19. Causal mechanisms of soil organic matter decomposition: Deconstructing salinity and flooding impacts in coastal wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stagg, Camille L.; Schoolmaster, Donald; Krauss, Ken W.; Cormier, Nicole; Conner, William H.

    2017-01-01

    Coastal wetlands significantly contribute to global carbon storage potential. Sea-level rise and other climate change-induced disturbances threaten coastal wetland sustainability and carbon storage capacity. It is critical that we understand the mechanisms controlling wetland carbon loss so that we can predict and manage these resources in anticipation of climate change. However, our current understanding of the mechanisms that control soil organic matter decomposition, in particular the impacts of elevated salinity, are limited, and literature reports are contradictory. In an attempt to improve our understanding of these complex processes, we measured root and rhizome decomposition and developed a causal model to identify and quantify the mechanisms that influence soil organic matter decomposition in coastal wetlands that are impacted by sea-level rise. We identified three causal pathways: 1) a direct pathway representing the effects of flooding on soil moisture, 2) a direct pathway representing the effects of salinity on decomposer microbial communities and soil biogeochemistry, and 3) an indirect pathway representing the effects of salinity on litter quality through changes in plant community composition over time. We used this model to test the effects of alternate scenarios on the response of tidal freshwater forested wetlands and oligohaline marshes to short- and long-term climate-induced disturbances of flooding and salinity. In tidal freshwater forested wetlands, the model predicted less decomposition in response to drought, hurricane salinity pulsing, and long-term sea-level rise. In contrast, in the oligohaline marsh, the model predicted no change in response to sea-level rise, and increased decomposition following a drought or a hurricane salinity pulse. Our results show that it is critical to consider the temporal scale of disturbance and the magnitude of exposure when assessing the effects of salinity intrusion on carbon mineralization in coastal

  20. Ab initio Algorithmic Causal Deconvolution of Intertwined Programs and Networks by Generative Mechanism

    KAUST Repository

    Zenil, Hector

    2018-02-18

    To extract and learn representations leading to generative mechanisms from data, especially without making arbitrary decisions and biased assumptions, is a central challenge in most areas of scientific research particularly in connection to current major limitations of influential topics and methods of machine and deep learning as they have often lost sight of the model component. Complex data is usually produced by interacting sources with different mechanisms. Here we introduce a parameter-free model-based approach, based upon the seminal concept of Algorithmic Probability, that decomposes an observation and signal into its most likely algorithmic generative mechanisms. Our methods use a causal calculus to infer model representations. We demonstrate the method ability to distinguish interacting mechanisms and deconvolve them, regardless of whether the objects produce strings, space-time evolution diagrams, images or networks. We numerically test and evaluate our method and find that it can disentangle observations from discrete dynamic systems, random and complex networks. We think that these causal inference techniques can contribute as key pieces of information for estimations of probability distributions complementing other more statistical-oriented techniques that otherwise lack model inference capabilities.

  1. Causal Mechanism Graph - A new notation for capturing cause-effect knowledge in software dependability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huang, Fuqun; Smidts, Carol

    2017-01-01

    Understanding cause-effect relations between concepts in software dependability engineering is fundamental to various research or industrial activities. Cognitive maps are traditionally used to elicit and represent such knowledge; however they seem incapable of accurately representing complex causal mechanisms in dependability engineering. This paper proposes a new notation called Causal Mechanism Graph (CMG) to elicit and represent the cause-effect domain knowledge embedded in experts’ minds or described in the literature. CMG contains a new set of symbols elicited from domain experts to capture the recurring interaction mechanisms between multiple concepts in software dependability engineering. Furthermore, compared to major existing graphic methods, CMG is particularly robust and suitable for mental knowledge elicitation: it allows one to represent the full range of cause-effect knowledge, accurately or fuzzily as one sees fit depending on the depth of knowledge he/she has. This feature combined with excellent reliability and validity poses CMG as a promising method that has the potential to be used in various areas, such as software dependability requirement elicitation, software dependability assessment and dependability risk control. - Highlights: • A new notation CMG for capturing cause-effect conceptual knowledge in software dependability. • CMG is particularly robust and suitable for mental knowledge representation. • CMG is a visual representation that bridges mental knowledge, natural and mathematical language. • CMG possesses excellent representation capability, validity and inter-coder reliability. • CMG is a fundamental method for various areas in dependability engineering.

  2. Molecular mechanisms underlying bacterial persisters

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maisonneuve, Etienne; Gerdes, Kenn

    2014-01-01

    All bacteria form persisters, cells that are multidrug tolerant and therefore able to survive antibiotic treatment. Due to the low frequencies of persisters in growing bacterial cultures and the complex underlying molecular mechanisms, the phenomenon has been challenging to study. However, recent...

  3. Moving towards causality in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder: overview of neural and genetic mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallo, Eduardo F; Posner, Jonathan

    2016-01-01

    Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by developmentally inappropriate levels of inattention and hyperactivity or impulsivity. The heterogeneity of its clinical manifestations and the differential responses to treatment and varied prognoses have long suggested myriad underlying causes. Over the past decade, clinical and basic research efforts have uncovered many behavioural and neurobiological alterations associated with ADHD, from genes to higher order neural networks. Here, we review the neurobiology of ADHD by focusing on neural circuits implicated in the disorder and discuss how abnormalities in circuitry relate to symptom presentation and treatment. We summarise the literature on genetic variants that are potentially related to the development of ADHD, and how these, in turn, might affect circuit function and relevant behaviours. Whether these underlying neurobiological factors are causally related to symptom presentation remains unresolved. Therefore, we assess efforts aimed at disentangling issues of causality, and showcase the shifting research landscape towards endophenotype refinement in clinical and preclinical settings. Furthermore, we review approaches being developed to understand the neurobiological underpinnings of this complex disorder including the use of animal models, neuromodulation, and pharmaco-imaging studies. PMID:27183902

  4. Modeling the mechanism of action of a DGAT1 inhibitor using a causal reasoning platform.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmed E Enayetallah

    Full Text Available Triglyceride accumulation is associated with obesity and type 2 diabetes. Genetic disruption of diacylglycerol acyltransferase 1 (DGAT1, which catalyzes the final reaction of triglyceride synthesis, confers dramatic resistance to high-fat diet induced obesity. Hence, DGAT1 is considered a potential therapeutic target for treating obesity and related metabolic disorders. However, the molecular events shaping the mechanism of action of DGAT1 pharmacological inhibition have not been fully explored yet. Here, we investigate the metabolic molecular mechanisms induced in response to pharmacological inhibition of DGAT1 using a recently developed computational systems biology approach, the Causal Reasoning Engine (CRE. The CRE algorithm utilizes microarray transcriptomic data and causal statements derived from the biomedical literature to infer upstream molecular events driving these transcriptional changes. The inferred upstream events (also called hypotheses are aggregated into biological models using a set of analytical tools that allow for evaluation and integration of the hypotheses in context of their supporting evidence. In comparison to gene ontology enrichment analysis which pointed to high-level changes in metabolic processes, the CRE results provide detailed molecular hypotheses to explain the measured transcriptional changes. CRE analysis of gene expression changes in high fat habituated rats treated with a potent and selective DGAT1 inhibitor demonstrate that the majority of transcriptomic changes support a metabolic network indicative of reversal of high fat diet effects that includes a number of molecular hypotheses such as PPARG, HNF4A and SREBPs. Finally, the CRE-generated molecular hypotheses from DGAT1 inhibitor treated rats were found to capture the major molecular characteristics of DGAT1 deficient mice, supporting a phenotype of decreased lipid and increased insulin sensitivity.

  5. Study of Noise Canceling Performance of Feedforward Fuzzy-Based ANC System under Non-Causal Condition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mojallali, Hamed; Izadi-Zamanabadi, Roozbeh; Amini, Rouzbeh

    Feed-forward active noise control (ANC) systems act as adaptive systems to control and cancel undesired signals and noises. If the delay in the noise canceling subsystems increases more than the delays in the primary path, non-causal condition will occur in these systems. In this paper, study...... of noise canceling performance of feed-forward fuzzy-based ANC systems for ducts under non-causal condition is presented. For this purpose, we use fuzzy filtered-x algorithm as an adaptive filter and the results are compared with classical filteredx algorithm which is employed under the same conditions....... Analysis shows that ANC systems using fuzzy algorithm has better efficiency for noise cancellation in non-causal condition....

  6. Does causal action facilitate causal perception in infants younger than 6 months of age?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakison, David H; Krogh, Lauren

    2012-01-01

    Previous research has established that infants are unable to perceive causality until 6¼ months of age. The current experiments examined whether infants' ability to engage in causal action could facilitate causal perception prior to this age. In Experiment 1, 4½-month-olds were randomly assigned to engage in causal action experience via Velcro sticky mittens or not engage in causal action because they wore non-sticky mittens. Both groups were then tested in the visual habituation paradigm to assess their causal perception. Infants who engaged in causal action - but not those without this causal action experience - perceived the habituation events as causal. Experiment 2 used a similar design to establish that 4½-month-olds are unable to generalize their own causal action to causality observed in dissimilar objects. These data are the first to demonstrate that infants under 6 months of age can perceive causality, and have implications for the mechanisms underlying the development of causal perception. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  7. Distinct causal mechanisms of attentional guidance by working memory and repetition priming in early visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soto, David; Llewelyn, Dafydd; Silvanto, Juha

    2012-03-07

    Human attention may be guided by representations held in working memory (WM) and also by priming from implicit memory. Neurophysiological data suggest that WM and priming may be associated with distinct neural mechanisms, but this prior evidence is only correlative. Furthermore, the role of the visual cortex in attention biases from memory remains unclear, because most previous studies conflated memory and selection processes. Here, we manipulated memory and attention in an orthogonal fashion and used an interventional approach to demonstrate the functional significance of WM and priming states in visual cortex for attentional biasing. Observers searched for a Landolt target that was preceded by a nonpredictive color cue that either had to be held in WM for a later recognition test or merely attended (priming counterpart). The application of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) over the occipital cortex modulated the impact of memory on search. Critically, the direction of this modulation depended on the memory state. In the WM condition, the application of TMS on validly cued trials (when the cue surrounded the sought target) enhanced search accuracy relative to the invalid trials (when the cue surrounded a distracter); the opposite pattern was observed in the priming condition. That the effects of occipital TMS on selection were contingent on memory context demonstrates that WM and priming represent distinct states in the early visual cortex that play a causal role in memory-based guidance of attention.

  8. Developing Causal Understanding with Causal Maps: The Impact of Total Links, Temporal Flow, and Lateral Position of Outcome Nodes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Allan; Lee, Woon Jee

    2012-01-01

    This study examined some of the methodological approaches used by students to construct causal maps in order to determine which approaches help students understand the underlying causes and causal mechanisms in a complex system. This study tested the relationship between causal understanding (ratio of root causes correctly/incorrectly identified,…

  9. Reconstructing constructivism: Causal models, Bayesian learning mechanisms and the theory theory

    OpenAIRE

    Gopnik, Alison; Wellman, Henry M.

    2012-01-01

    We propose a new version of the “theory theory” grounded in the computational framework of probabilistic causal models and Bayesian learning. Probabilistic models allow a constructivist but rigorous and detailed approach to cognitive development. They also explain the learning of both more specific causal hypotheses and more abstract framework theories. We outline the new theoretical ideas, explain the computational framework in an intuitive and non-technical way, and review an extensive but ...

  10. Overpressures: Causal Mechanisms, Conventional and Hydromechanical Approaches Surpressions : origine, approches conventionnelle et hydromécanique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grauls D.

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abnormal fluid pressure regimes are commonly encountered at depth in most sedimentary basins. Relationships between effective vertical stress and porosity have been applied, since 1970 to the Gulf Coast area, to assess the magnitude of overpressures. Positive results have been obtained from seismic and basin-modeling techniques in sand-shale, vertical-stress-dominated tertiary basins, whenever compaction disequilibrium conditions apply. However, overpressures resulting from other and/or additional causes (tectonic stress, hydrocarbon generation, thermal stress, fault-related transfer, hydrofracturing. . . cannot be quantitatively assessed using this approach. A hydromechanical approach is then proposed in addition to conventional methods. At any depth, the upper bound fluid pressure is controlled by in situ conditions related to hydrofracturing or fault reactivation. Fluid-driven fracturing implies an episodically open system, under a close to zerominimum effective stress regime. Sound knowledge of present-day tectonic stress regimes allows a direct estimation of minimum stress evolution. A quantitative fluid pressure assessment at depth is therefore possible, as in undrained or/and compartmented geological systems, pressure regimes, whatever their origin, tend to rapidly reach a value close to the minimum principal stress. Therefore, overpressure assessment will be improved, as this methodology can be applied to various geological settings and situations where present-day overpressures originated from other causal mechanisms, very often combined. However, pressure trends in transition zones are more difficult to assess correctly. Additional research on cap rocks and fault seals is therefore required to improve their predictability. In addition to overpressure assessment, the minimum principal stress concept allows a better understanding of petroleum system, as fault-related hydrocarbon dynamic transfers, hydrofractured domains and cap

  11. The association between autism and errors in early embryogenesis: what is the causal mechanism?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ploeger, A.; Raijmakers, M.E.J.; van der Maas, H.L.J.; Galis, F.

    2010-01-01

    The association between embryonic errors and the development of autism has been recognized in the literature, but the mechanism underlying this association remains unknown. We propose that pleiotropic effects during a very early and specific stage of embryonic development—early organogenesis—can

  12. A Weighting Method for Assessing Between-Site Heterogeneity in Causal Mediation Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Xu; Hong, Guanglei

    2017-01-01

    When a multisite randomized trial reveals between-site variation in program impact, methods are needed for further investigating heterogeneous mediation mechanisms across the sites. We conceptualize and identify a joint distribution of site-specific direct and indirect effects under the potential outcomes framework. A method-of-moments procedure…

  13. The fuzzy cube and causal efficacy: representation of concomitant mechanisms in stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jobe, Thomas H.; Helgason, Cathy M.

    1998-04-01

    Twentieth century medical science has embraced nineteenth century Boolean probability theory based upon two-valued Aristotelian logic. With the later addition of bit-based, von Neumann structured computational architectures, an epistemology based on randomness has led to a bivalent epidemiological methodology that dominates medical decision making. In contrast, fuzzy logic, based on twentieth century multi-valued logic, and computational structures that are content addressed and adaptively modified, has advanced a new scientific paradigm for the twenty-first century. Diseases such as stroke involve multiple concomitant causal factors that are difficult to represent using conventional statistical methods. We tested which paradigm best represented this complex multi-causal clinical phenomenon-stroke. We show that the fuzzy logic paradigm better represented clinical complexity in cerebrovascular disease than current probability theory based methodology. We believe this finding is generalizable to all of clinical science since multiple concomitant causal factors are involved in nearly all known pathological processes.

  14. Co-occurring expression and methylation QTLs allow detection of common causal variants and shared biological mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Brandon L; Tong, Lin; Argos, Maria; Demanelis, Kathryn; Jasmine, Farzana; Rakibuz-Zaman, Muhammad; Sarwar, Golam; Islam, Md Tariqul; Shahriar, Hasan; Islam, Tariqul; Rahman, Mahfuzar; Yunus, Md; Kibriya, Muhammad G; Chen, Lin S; Ahsan, Habibul

    2018-02-23

    Inherited genetic variation affects local gene expression and DNA methylation in humans. Most expression quantitative trait loci (cis-eQTLs) occur at the same genomic location as a methylation QTL (cis-meQTL), suggesting a common causal variant and shared mechanism. Using DNA and RNA from peripheral blood of Bangladeshi individuals, here we use co-localization methods to identify eQTL-meQTL pairs likely to share a causal variant. We use partial correlation and mediation analyses to identify >400 of these pairs showing evidence of a causal relationship between expression and methylation (i.e., shared mechanism) with many additional pairs we are underpowered to detect. These co-localized pairs are enriched for SNPs showing opposite associations with expression and methylation, although many SNPs affect multiple CpGs in opposite directions. This work demonstrates the pervasiveness of co-regulated expression and methylation in the human genome. Applying this approach to other types of molecular QTLs can enhance our understanding of regulatory mechanisms.

  15. College education and social trust: an evidence-based study on the causal mechanisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huang, J.; Maassen van den Brink, H.; Groot, W.

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines the influence of college education on social trust at the individual level. Based on the literature of trust and social trust, we hypothesize that life experience/development since adulthood and perceptions of cultural/social structures are two primary channels in the causal

  16. College Education and Social Trust: An Evidence-Based Study on the Causal Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Jian; van den Brink, Henriette Maassen; Groot, Wim

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines the influence of college education on social trust at the individual level. Based on the literature of trust and social trust, we hypothesize that life experience/development since adulthood and perceptions of cultural/social structures are two primary channels in the causal linkage between college education and social trust.…

  17. Causal mechanisms of seismo-EM phenomena during the 1965-1967 Matsushiro earthquake swarm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enomoto, Yuji; Yamabe, Tsuneaki; Okumura, Nobuo

    2017-03-01

    The 1965-1967 Matsushiro earthquake swarm in central Japan exhibited two unique characteristics. The first was a hydro-mechanical crust rupture resulting from degassing, volume expansion of CO2/water, and a crack opening within the critically stressed crust under a strike-slip stress. The other was, despite the lower total seismic energy, the occurrence of complexed seismo-electromagnetic (seismo-EM) phenomena of the geomagnetic intensity increase, unusual earthquake lights (EQLs) and atmospheric electric field (AEF) variations. Although the basic rupture process of this swarm of earthquakes is reasonably understood in terms of hydro-mechanical crust rupture, the associated seismo-EM processes remain largely unexplained. Here, we describe a series of seismo-EM mechanisms involved in the hydro-mechanical rupture process, as observed by coupling the electric interaction of rock rupture with CO2 gas and the dielectric-barrier discharge of the modelled fields in laboratory experiments. We found that CO2 gases passing through the newly created fracture surface of the rock were electrified to generate pressure-impressed current/electric dipoles, which could induce a magnetic field following Biot-Savart’s law, decrease the atmospheric electric field and generate dielectric-barrier discharge lightning affected by the coupling effect between the seismic and meteorological activities.

  18. College Education and Social Trust: An Evidence-Based Study on the Causal Mechanisms

    OpenAIRE

    Huang, Jian; van den Brink, Henri?tte Maassen; Groot, Wim

    2010-01-01

    This paper examines the influence of college education on social trust at the individual level. Based on the literature of trust and social trust, we hypothesize that life experience/development since adulthood and perceptions of cultural/social structures are two primary channels in the causal linkage between college education and social trust. In the first part of the empirical study econometric techniques are employed to tackle the omitted-variable problem and substantial evidence is found...

  19. Metacognitive mechanisms underlying lucid dreaming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filevich, Elisa; Dresler, Martin; Brick, Timothy R; Kühn, Simone

    2015-01-21

    Lucid dreaming is a state of awareness that one is dreaming, without leaving the sleep state. Dream reports show that self-reflection and volitional control are more pronounced in lucid compared with nonlucid dreams. Mostly on these grounds, lucid dreaming has been associated with metacognition. However, the link to lucid dreaming at the neural level has not yet been explored. We sought for relationships between the neural correlates of lucid dreaming and thought monitoring. Human participants completed a questionnaire assessing lucid dreaming ability, and underwent structural and functional MRI. We split participants based on their reported dream lucidity. Participants in the high-lucidity group showed greater gray matter volume in the frontopolar cortex (BA9/10) compared with those in the low-lucidity group. Further, differences in brain structure were mirrored by differences in brain function. The BA9/10 regions identified through structural analyses showed increases in blood oxygen level-dependent signal during thought monitoring in both groups, and more strongly in the high-lucidity group. Our results reveal shared neural systems between lucid dreaming and metacognitive function, in particular in the domain of thought monitoring. This finding contributes to our understanding of the mechanisms enabling higher-order consciousness in dreams. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/351082-07$15.00/0.

  20. Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Hepatocellular Carcinoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Trepo

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Hepatocarcinogenesis is a complex process that remains still partly understood. That might be explained by the multiplicity of etiologic factors, the genetic/epigenetic heterogeneity of tumors bulks and the ignorance of the liver cell types that give rise to tumorigenic cells that have stem cell-like properties. The DNA stress induced by hepatocyte turnover, inflammation and maybe early oncogenic pathway activation and sometimes viral factors, leads to DNA damage response which activates the key tumor suppressive checkpoints p53/p21Cip1 and p16INK4a/pRb responsible of cell cycle arrest and cellular senescence as reflected by the cirrhosis stage. Still obscure mechanisms, but maybe involving the Wnt signaling and Twist proteins, would allow pre-senescent hepatocytes to bypass senescence, acquire immortality by telomerase reactivation and get the last genetic/epigenetic hits necessary for cancerous transformation. Among some of the oncogenic pathways that might play key driving roles in hepatocarcinogenesis, c-myc and the Wnt/β-catenin signaling seem of particular interest. Finally, antiproliferative and apoptosis deficiencies involving TGF-β, Akt/PTEN, IGF2 pathways for instance are prerequisite for cancerous transformation. Of evidence, not only the transformed liver cell per se but the facilitating microenvironment is of fundamental importance for tumor bulk growth and metastasis.

  1. Effective connectivity of brain regions underlying third-party punishment: Functional MRI and Granger causality evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellucci, Gabriele; Chernyak, Sergey; Hoffman, Morris; Deshpande, Gopikrishna; Dal Monte, Olga; Knutson, Kristine M; Grafman, Jordan; Krueger, Frank

    2017-04-01

    Third-party punishment (TPP) for norm violations is an essential deterrent in large-scale human societies, and builds on two essential cognitive functions: evaluating legal responsibility and determining appropriate punishment. Despite converging evidence that TPP is mediated by a specific set of brain regions, little is known about their effective connectivity (direction and strength of connections). Applying parametric event-related functional MRI in conjunction with multivariate Granger causality analysis, we asked healthy participants to estimate how much punishment a hypothetical perpetrator deserves for intentionally committing criminal offenses varying in levels of harm. Our results confirmed that TPP legal decisions are based on two domain-general networks: the mentalizing network for evaluating legal responsibility and the central-executive network for determining appropriate punishment. Further, temporal pole (TP) and dorsomedial prefrontal cortex (PFC) emerged as hubs of the mentalizing network, uniquely generating converging output connections to ventromedial PFC, temporo-parietal junction, and posterior cingulate. In particular, dorsomedial PFC received inputs only from TP and both its activation and its connectivity to dorsolateral PFC correlated with degree of punishment. This supports the hypothesis that dorsomedial PFC acts as the driver of the TPP activation pattern, leading to the decision on the appropriate punishment. In conclusion, these results advance our understanding of the organizational elements of the TPP brain networks and provide better insights into the mental states of judges and jurors tasked with blaming and punishing legal wrongs.

  2. Quantifying causal mechanisms to determine how protected areas affect poverty through changes in ecosystem services and infrastructure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraro, Paul J.; Hanauer, Merlin M.

    2014-01-01

    To develop effective environmental policies, we must understand the mechanisms through which the policies affect social and environmental outcomes. Unfortunately, empirical evidence about these mechanisms is limited, and little guidance for quantifying them exists. We develop an approach to quantifying the mechanisms through which protected areas affect poverty. We focus on three mechanisms: changes in tourism and recreational services; changes in infrastructure in the form of road networks, health clinics, and schools; and changes in regulating and provisioning ecosystem services and foregone production activities that arise from land-use restrictions. The contributions of ecotourism and other ecosystem services to poverty alleviation in the context of a real environmental program have not yet been empirically estimated. Nearly two-thirds of the poverty reduction associated with the establishment of Costa Rican protected areas is causally attributable to opportunities afforded by tourism. Although protected areas reduced deforestation and increased regrowth, these land cover changes neither reduced nor exacerbated poverty, on average. Protected areas did not, on average, affect our measures of infrastructure and thus did not contribute to poverty reduction through this mechanism. We attribute the remaining poverty reduction to unobserved dimensions of our mechanisms or to other mechanisms. Our study empirically estimates previously unidentified contributions of ecotourism and other ecosystem services to poverty alleviation in the context of a real environmental program. We demonstrate that, with existing data and appropriate empirical methods, conservation scientists and policymakers can begin to elucidate the mechanisms through which ecosystem conservation programs affect human welfare. PMID:24567397

  3. Quantifying causal mechanisms to determine how protected areas affect poverty through changes in ecosystem services and infrastructure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferraro, Paul J; Hanauer, Merlin M

    2014-03-18

    To develop effective environmental policies, we must understand the mechanisms through which the policies affect social and environmental outcomes. Unfortunately, empirical evidence about these mechanisms is limited, and little guidance for quantifying them exists. We develop an approach to quantifying the mechanisms through which protected areas affect poverty. We focus on three mechanisms: changes in tourism and recreational services; changes in infrastructure in the form of road networks, health clinics, and schools; and changes in regulating and provisioning ecosystem services and foregone production activities that arise from land-use restrictions. The contributions of ecotourism and other ecosystem services to poverty alleviation in the context of a real environmental program have not yet been empirically estimated. Nearly two-thirds of the poverty reduction associated with the establishment of Costa Rican protected areas is causally attributable to opportunities afforded by tourism. Although protected areas reduced deforestation and increased regrowth, these land cover changes neither reduced nor exacerbated poverty, on average. Protected areas did not, on average, affect our measures of infrastructure and thus did not contribute to poverty reduction through this mechanism. We attribute the remaining poverty reduction to unobserved dimensions of our mechanisms or to other mechanisms. Our study empirically estimates previously unidentified contributions of ecotourism and other ecosystem services to poverty alleviation in the context of a real environmental program. We demonstrate that, with existing data and appropriate empirical methods, conservation scientists and policymakers can begin to elucidate the mechanisms through which ecosystem conservation programs affect human welfare.

  4. Deciphering the Cognitive and Neural Mechanisms Underlying ...

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

    Deciphering the Cognitive and Neural Mechanisms Underlying Auditory Learning. This project seeks to understand the brain mechanisms necessary for people to learn to perceive sounds. Neural circuits and learning. The research team will test people with and without musical training to evaluate their capacity to learn ...

  5. mediation: R Package for Causal Mediation Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dustin Tingley

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we describe the R package mediation for conducting causal mediation analysis in applied empirical research. In many scientific disciplines, the goal of researchers is not only estimating causal effects of a treatment but also understanding the process in which the treatment causally affects the outcome. Causal mediation analysis is frequently used to assess potential causal mechanisms. The mediation package implements a comprehensive suite of statistical tools for conducting such an analysis. The package is organized into two distinct approaches. Using the model-based approach, researchers can estimate causal mediation effects and conduct sensitivity analysis under the standard research design. Furthermore, the design-based approach provides several analysis tools that are applicable under different experimental designs. This approach requires weaker assumptions than the model-based approach. We also implement a statistical method for dealing with multiple (causally dependent mediators, which are often encountered in practice. Finally, the package also offers a methodology for assessing causal mediation in the presence of treatment noncompliance, a common problem in randomized trials.

  6. Decision-making and evaluation of science causal claims: Effects of goals on uses of evidence and explanatory mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Jacqueline Yin Sang

    2015-10-01

    Evidence and explanatory mechanism are central to scientific practices. Using such information could also inform decisions about issues in which science can play some role, from policy issues like climate change to personal issues like vaccination. While research suggests that people tend to focus on non-science considerations when making science-related decisions, there is also evidence that people can reason very productively with evidence and mechanism. This study examines how the goals participants pursue when reading a science report influences how they attend to information about causal mechanism and evidence. Two hundred and seventeen high school students were asked either to evaluate the truth of a scientific claim, to make a personal decision based on the claim, or to make a social policy decision based on the claim using an online task-based survey. All three groups of participants attended to evidence and mechanism, but participants with different goals requested different types of information and were influenced by evidence and mechanism for different reasons. The findings suggest that goals influence how participants use evidence and mechanism.

  7. Introductive remarks on causal inference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvana A. Romio

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available One of the more challenging issues in epidemiological research is being able to provide an unbiased estimate of the causal exposure-disease effect, to assess the possible etiological mechanisms and the implication for public health. A major source of bias is confounding, which can spuriously create or mask the causal relationship. In the last ten years, methodological research has been developed to better de_ne the concept of causation in epidemiology and some important achievements have resulted in new statistical models. In this review, we aim to show how a technique the well known by statisticians, i.e. standardization, can be seen as a method to estimate causal e_ects, equivalent under certain conditions to the inverse probability treatment weight procedure.

  8. Mechanical buckling of artery under pulsatile pressure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qin; Han, Hai-Chao

    2012-04-30

    Tortuosity that often occurs in carotid and other arteries has been shown to be associated with high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, and other diseases. However the mechanisms of tortuosity development are not clear. Our previous studies have suggested that arteries buckling could be a possible mechanism for the initiation of tortuous shape but artery buckling under pulsatile flow condition has not been fully studied. The objectives of this study were to determine the artery critical buckling pressure under pulsatile pressure both experimentally and theoretically, and to elucidate the relationship of critical pressures under pulsatile flow, steady flow, and static pressure. We first tested the buckling pressures of porcine carotid arteries under these loading conditions, and then proposed a nonlinear elastic artery model to examine the buckling pressures under pulsatile pressure conditions. Experimental results showed that under pulsatile pressure arteries buckled when the peak pressures were approximately equal to the critical buckling pressures under static pressure. This was also confirmed by model simulations at low pulse frequencies. Our results provide an effective tool to predict artery buckling pressure under pulsatile pressure. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Amorphization of ice under mechanical stresses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bordonskii, G. S.; Krylov, S. D.

    2017-11-01

    The dielectric parameters of freshly produced freshwater ice in the microwave range are investigated. It is established that this kind of ice contains a noticeable amount of amorphous ice. Its production is associated with plastic deformation under mechanical stresses. An assessment of the dielectric-permeability change caused by amorphous ice in the state of a slowly flowing medium is given.

  10. On the necessity and sufficiency of local commutativity for causality in quantum mechanics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muynck, W.M. de.

    1984-01-01

    This thesis contributes to the resolution of the question whether quantum mechanics admits an objectivistic interpretation if the description is restricted to the phenomenalistic domain of the quantum mechanical observables. Without touching the realism-phenomenalism dichotomy, this thesis investigates the possibility to disregard the influence of the measurement interaction on the qm measuring results. In the first part, the measuring process is studied and its influence on the objectivity of measuring results. The measurement of a local observable is interpreted as a local operation. Its local commutativity is a necessary condition for macrocausality. In the second part the converse question is studied, viz. Whether local commutativity is sufficient for macrocausality. (Auth.)

  11. Causal universe

    CERN Document Server

    Ellis, George FR; Pabjan, Tadeusz

    2013-01-01

    Written by philosophers, cosmologists, and physicists, this collection of essays deals with causality, which is a core issue for both science and philosophy. Readers will learn about different types of causality in complex systems and about new perspectives on this issue based on physical and cosmological considerations. In addition, the book includes essays pertaining to the problem of causality in ancient Greek philosophy, and to the problem of God's relation to the causal structures of nature viewed in the light of contemporary physics and cosmology.

  12. Gas Bubble Dynamics under Mechanical Vibrations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohagheghian, Shahrouz; Elbing, Brian

    2017-11-01

    The scientific community has a limited understanding of the bubble dynamics under mechanical oscillations due to over simplification of Navier-Stockes equation by neglecting the shear stress tensor and not accounting for body forces when calculating the acoustic radiation force. The current work experimental investigates bubble dynamics under mechanical vibration and resulting acoustic field by measuring the bubble size and velocity using high-speed imaging. The experimental setup consists of a custom-designed shaker table, cast acrylic bubble column, compressed air injection manifold and an optical imaging system. The mechanical vibrations resulted in accelerations between 0.25 to 10 times gravitational acceleration corresponding to frequency and amplitude range of 8 - 22Hz and 1 - 10mm respectively. Throughout testing the void fraction was limited to definition of Bjerknes force in combination with Rayleigh-Plesset equation. Physical behavior of the system was capture and classified. Bubble size, velocity as well as size and spatial distribution will be presented.

  13. The Construction of Causal Schemes: Learning Mechanisms at the Knowledge Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    diSessa, Andrea A.

    2014-01-01

    This work uses microgenetic study of classroom learning to illuminate (1) the role of pre-instructional student knowledge in the construction of normative scientific knowledge, and (2) the learning mechanisms that drive change. Three enactments of an instructional sequence designed to lead to a scientific understanding of thermal equilibration are…

  14. [Path causal analysis of a model of a functional organization between defense mechanisms and coping strategies].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouvernet, B; Mouchard, J; Combaluzier, S

    2015-10-01

    In the psychological literature, two concepts are often used to approach psychological and social adaptation: defense mechanisms and coping strategies. Many empirical studies deal with these strategies independently of each other. However, the nature of their relationship is still debated, making empirical studies necessary jointly evaluating these two types of strategies to better reflect the adaptive process. To test Chabrol and Callahan's theoretical model of the relationship between defence mechanisms and coping strategies. According to theses authors, defence mechanisms and coping strategies are distinct mechanisms, functionally organized: defenses appear first and modulate the emergence of coping strategy defenses through threat representation. Ninety-four young adult volunteers completed the Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS), the Defense Style Questionnaire (DSQ-40) and the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS14). The data were treated according to the structural equation modeling method. Overall, the results support the theoretical model proposed by Chabrol and Callahan. The statistical model provides a good fit to the data (chi(2)/df=18.62/22=.85, P=.67, RMSEA=.00 (90% CI: .00-.07), CFI=1, TLI=1.04). It explains from 7 to 24% of coping variability scores (Avoidant Coping: R(2)=.07, Pcritical in stress management. Copyright © 2014 L’Encéphale, Paris. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  15. Process, System, Causality, and Quantum Mechanics: A Psychoanalysis of Animal Faith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etter, Tom; Noyes, H. Pierre

    We shall argue in this paper that a central piece of modern physics does not really belong to physics at all but to elementary probability theory. Given a joint probability distribution J on a set of random variables containing x and y, define a link between x and y to be the condition x=y on J. Define the {\\it state} D of a link x=y as the joint probability distribution matrix on x and y without the link. The two core laws of quantum mechanics are the Born probability rule, and the unitary dynamical law whose best known form is the Schrodinger's equation. Von Neumann formulated these two laws in the language of Hilbert space as prob(P) = trace(PD) and D'T = TD respectively, where P is a projection, D and D' are (von Neumann) density matrices, and T is a unitary transformation. We'll see that if we regard link states as density matrices, the algebraic forms of these two core laws occur as completely general theorems about links. When we extend probability theory by allowing cases to count negatively, we find that the Hilbert space framework of quantum mechanics proper emerges from the assumption that all D's are symmetrical in rows and columns. On the other hand, Markovian systems emerge when we assume that one of every linked variable pair has a uniform probability distribution. By representing quantum and Markovian structure in this way, we see clearly both how they differ, and also how they can coexist in natural harmony with each other, as they must in quantum measurement, which we'll examine in some detail. Looking beyond quantum mechanics, we see how both structures have their special places in a much larger continuum of formal systems that we have yet to look for in nature.

  16. Causal mapping

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Lauge Baungaard

    2006-01-01

    The lecture note explains how to use the causal mapping method as well as the theoretical framework aoosciated to the method......The lecture note explains how to use the causal mapping method as well as the theoretical framework aoosciated to the method...

  17. Gender Identity Disorder and Schizophrenia: Neurodevelopmental Disorders with Common Causal Mechanisms?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ravi Philip Rajkumar

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Gender identity disorder (GID, recently renamed gender dysphoria (GD, is a rare condition characterized by an incongruity between gender identity and biological sex. Clinical evidence suggests that schizophrenia occurs in patients with GID at rates higher than in the general population and that patients with GID may have schizophrenia-like personality traits. Conversely, patients with schizophrenia may experience alterations in gender identity and gender role perception. Neurobiological research, including brain imaging and studies of finger length ratio and handedness, suggests that both these disorders are associated with altered cerebral sexual dimorphism and changes in cerebral lateralization. Various mechanisms, such as Toxoplasma infection, reduced levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, early childhood adversity, and links with autism spectrum disorders, may account for some of this overlap. The implications of this association for further research are discussed.

  18. Gender Identity Disorder and Schizophrenia: Neurodevelopmental Disorders with Common Causal Mechanisms?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajkumar, Ravi Philip

    2014-01-01

    Gender identity disorder (GID), recently renamed gender dysphoria (GD), is a rare condition characterized by an incongruity between gender identity and biological sex. Clinical evidence suggests that schizophrenia occurs in patients with GID at rates higher than in the general population and that patients with GID may have schizophrenia-like personality traits. Conversely, patients with schizophrenia may experience alterations in gender identity and gender role perception. Neurobiological research, including brain imaging and studies of finger length ratio and handedness, suggests that both these disorders are associated with altered cerebral sexual dimorphism and changes in cerebral lateralization. Various mechanisms, such as Toxoplasma infection, reduced levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), early childhood adversity, and links with autism spectrum disorders, may account for some of this overlap. The implications of this association for further research are discussed. PMID:25548672

  19. Gender identity disorder and schizophrenia: neurodevelopmental disorders with common causal mechanisms?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajkumar, Ravi Philip

    2014-01-01

    Gender identity disorder (GID), recently renamed gender dysphoria (GD), is a rare condition characterized by an incongruity between gender identity and biological sex. Clinical evidence suggests that schizophrenia occurs in patients with GID at rates higher than in the general population and that patients with GID may have schizophrenia-like personality traits. Conversely, patients with schizophrenia may experience alterations in gender identity and gender role perception. Neurobiological research, including brain imaging and studies of finger length ratio and handedness, suggests that both these disorders are associated with altered cerebral sexual dimorphism and changes in cerebral lateralization. Various mechanisms, such as Toxoplasma infection, reduced levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), early childhood adversity, and links with autism spectrum disorders, may account for some of this overlap. The implications of this association for further research are discussed.

  20. DNA under Force: Mechanics, Electrostatics, and Hydration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jingqiang Li

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Quantifying the basic intra- and inter-molecular forces of DNA has helped us to better understand and further predict the behavior of DNA. Single molecule technique elucidates the mechanics of DNA under applied external forces, sometimes under extreme forces. On the other hand, ensemble studies of DNA molecular force allow us to extend our understanding of DNA molecules under other forces such as electrostatic and hydration forces. Using a variety of techniques, we can have a comprehensive understanding of DNA molecular forces, which is crucial in unraveling the complex DNA functions in living cells as well as in designing a system that utilizes the unique properties of DNA in nanotechnology.

  1. A review of protective factors and causal mechanisms that enhance the mental health of Indigenous Circumpolar youth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDonald, Joanna Petrasek; Ford, James D; Willox, Ashlee Cunsolo; Ross, Nancy A

    2013-12-09

    To review the protective factors and causal mechanisms which promote and enhance Indigenous youth mental health in the Circumpolar North. A systematic literature review of peer-reviewed English-language research was conducted to systematically examine the protective factors and causal mechanisms which promote and enhance Indigenous youth mental health in the Circumpolar North. This review followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines, with elements of a realist review. From 160 records identified in the initial search of 3 databases, 15 met the inclusion criteria and were retained for full review. Data were extracted using a codebook to organize and synthesize relevant information from the articles. More than 40 protective factors at the individual, family, and community levels were identified as enhancing Indigenous youth mental health. These included practicing and holding traditional knowledge and skills, the desire to be useful and to contribute meaningfully to one's community, having positive role models, and believing in one's self. Broadly, protective factors at the family and community levels were identified as positively creating and impacting one's social environment, which interacts with factors at the individual level to enhance resilience. An emphasis on the roles of cultural and land-based activities, history, and language, as well as on the importance of social and family supports, also emerged throughout the literature. More than 40 protective factors at the individual, family, and community levels were identified as enhancing Indigenous youth mental health. These included practicing and holding traditional knowledge and skills, the desire to be useful and to contribute meaningfully to one's community, having positive role models, and believing in one's self. Broadly, protective factors at the family and community levels were identified as positively creating and impacting one's social

  2. A review of protective factors and causal mechanisms that enhance the mental health of Indigenous Circumpolar youth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Petrasek MacDonald

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Objectives . To review the protective factors and causal mechanisms which promote and enhance Indigenous youth mental health in the Circumpolar North. Study design . A systematic literature review of peer-reviewed English-language research was conducted to systematically examine the protective factors and causal mechanisms which promote and enhance Indigenous youth mental health in the Circumpolar North. Methods . This review followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA guidelines, with elements of a realist review. From 160 records identified in the initial search of 3 databases, 15 met the inclusion criteria and were retained for full review. Data were extracted using a codebook to organize and synthesize relevant information from the articles. Results . More than 40 protective factors at the individual, family, and community levels were identified as enhancing Indigenous youth mental health. These included practicing and holding traditional knowledge and skills, the desire to be useful and to contribute meaningfully to one's community, having positive role models, and believing in one's self. Broadly, protective factors at the family and community levels were identified as positively creating and impacting one's social environment, which interacts with factors at the individual level to enhance resilience. An emphasis on the roles of cultural and land-based activities, history, and language, as well as on the importance of social and family supports, also emerged throughout the literature. Conclusions . Healthy communities and families foster and support youth who are resilient to mental health challenges and able to adapt and cope with multiple stressors, be they social, economic, or environmental. Creating opportunities and environments where youth can successfully navigate challenges and enhance their resilience can in turn contribute to fostering healthy Circumpolar communities. Looking at the

  3. Causal narratives in public health: the difference between mechanisms of aetiology and mechanisms of prevention in non-communicable diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Michael P; Russo, Federica

    2018-01-01

    Research in the health sciences has been highly successful in revealing the aetiologies of many morbidities, particularly those involving the microbiology of communicable disease. This success has helped form a narrative to be found in numerous public health documents, about interventions to reduce the burden of non-communicable diseases (e.g., obesity or alcohol related pathologies). These focus on tackling the purported pathogenic factors causing the diseases as a means of prevention. In this paper, we argue that this approach has been sub-optimal. The mechanisms of aetiology and of prevention are sometimes significantly different and failure to make this distinction has hindered efforts at preventing non-communicable diseases linked to diet, exercise and alcohol consumption. We propose a sociological approach as an alternative based on social practice theory. (A virtual abstract for this paper can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_979cmCmR9rLrKuD7z0ycA). © 2017 The Authors. Sociology of Health & Illness published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Foundation for SHIL.

  4. Optimal causal inference: estimating stored information and approximating causal architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Still, Susanne; Crutchfield, James P; Ellison, Christopher J

    2010-09-01

    We introduce an approach to inferring the causal architecture of stochastic dynamical systems that extends rate-distortion theory to use causal shielding--a natural principle of learning. We study two distinct cases of causal inference: optimal causal filtering and optimal causal estimation. Filtering corresponds to the ideal case in which the probability distribution of measurement sequences is known, giving a principled method to approximate a system's causal structure at a desired level of representation. We show that in the limit in which a model-complexity constraint is relaxed, filtering finds the exact causal architecture of a stochastic dynamical system, known as the causal-state partition. From this, one can estimate the amount of historical information the process stores. More generally, causal filtering finds a graded model-complexity hierarchy of approximations to the causal architecture. Abrupt changes in the hierarchy, as a function of approximation, capture distinct scales of structural organization. For nonideal cases with finite data, we show how the correct number of the underlying causal states can be found by optimal causal estimation. A previously derived model-complexity control term allows us to correct for the effect of statistical fluctuations in probability estimates and thereby avoid overfitting.

  5. Epidemiological causality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morabia, Alfredo

    2005-01-01

    Epidemiological methods, which combine population thinking and group comparisons, can primarily identify causes of disease in populations. There is therefore a tension between our intuitive notion of a cause, which we want to be deterministic and invariant at the individual level, and the epidemiological notion of causes, which are invariant only at the population level. Epidemiologists have given heretofore a pragmatic solution to this tension. Causal inference in epidemiology consists in checking the logical coherence of a causality statement and determining whether what has been found grossly contradicts what we think we already know: how strong is the association? Is there a dose-response relationship? Does the cause precede the effect? Is the effect biologically plausible? Etc. This approach to causal inference can be traced back to the English philosophers David Hume and John Stuart Mill. On the other hand, the mode of establishing causality, devised by Jakob Henle and Robert Koch, which has been fruitful in bacteriology, requires that in every instance the effect invariably follows the cause (e.g., inoculation of Koch bacillus and tuberculosis). This is incompatible with epidemiological causality which has to deal with probabilistic effects (e.g., smoking and lung cancer), and is therefore invariant only for the population.

  6. Evolved Mechanisms Versus Underlying Conditional Relations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Astorga Miguel López

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The social contracts theory claims that, in social exchange circumstances, human reasoning is not necessarily led by logic, but by certain evolved mental mechanisms that are useful for catching offenders. An emblematic experiment carried out with the intention to prove this thesis is the first experiment described by Fiddick, Cosmides, and Tooby in their paper of 2000. Lopez Astorga has questioned that experiment claiming that its results depend on an underlying conditional logical form not taken into account by Fiddick, Cosmides, and Tooby. In this paper, I propose an explanation alternative to that of Lopez Astorga, which does not depend on logical forms and is based on the mental models theory. Thus, I conclude that this other alternative explanation is one more proof that the experiment in question does not demonstrate the fundamental thesis of the social contracts theory.

  7. The relationship between ethnic-racial socialization and adolescent substance use: An examination of social learning as a causal mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grindal, Matthew; Nieri, Tanya

    2016-01-01

    The presence of parental socialization messages relevant to a child's race/ethnicity--ethnic-racial socialization (ERS)--have been found to be an important predictor of developmental outcomes. However, scholars have recently called for greater theoretical clarification, citing the need for better understanding of how the effects of ethnic-racial socialization messages differ by dimension and what causal mechanisms underlie this relationship. Using survey data from 269 Southern California high school students, this study tested a theoretical model examining how 3 dimensions of ERS differentially relate to adolescent substance use, and how much these links are mediated by peer substance use social learning (Akers, 2009). Using structural equation modeling, we cross-sectionally and longitudinally tested the pathways between ERS and peer substance use social learning and between peer social learning and substance use. We found that 2 of the 3 dimensions of ERS were related to substance use. Cultural socialization was associated with lower substance use, and promotion of mistrust was associated with greater substance use. Both effects were indirect and mediated by peer substance use social learning. These results were replicated in a separate analysis of the largest ethnic subsample (Latinos). Ethnic-racial socialization messages that stress pride in one's ethnic group and the development of one's ethnic identity (cultural socialization) may be a protective factor against future substance use by inhibiting the association with substance-using peers, whereas messages that stress distrust of other ethnic groups (promotion of mistrust) may be a risk factor against future substance use by promoting the association with substance-using peers.

  8. Mechanisms underlying UV-induced immune suppression

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ullrich, Stephen E. [Department of Immunology, University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center, South Campus Research Building 1, 7455 Fannin St., P.O. Box 301402, Houston, TX 77030-1903 (United States)]. E-mail: sullrich@mdanderson.org

    2005-04-01

    Skin cancer is the most prevalent form of human neoplasia. Estimates suggest that in excess of one million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed this year alone in the United States (www.cancer.org/statistics). Fortunately, because of their highly visible location, skin cancers are more rapidly diagnosed and more easily treated than other types of cancer. Be that as it may, approximately 10,000 Americans a year die from skin cancer. The cost of treating non-melanoma skin cancer is estimated to be in excess of US$ 650 million a year [J.G. Chen, A.B. Fleischer, E.D. Smith, C. Kancler, N.D. Goldman, P.M. Williford, S.R. Feldman, Cost of non-melanoma skin cancer treatment in the United States, Dermatol. Surg. 27 (2001) 1035-1038], and when melanoma is included, the estimated cost of treating skin cancer in the United States is estimated to rise to US$ 2.9 billion annually (www.cancer.org/statistics). Because the morbidity and mortality associated with skin cancer is a major public health problem, it is important to understand the mechanisms underlying skin cancer development. The primary cause of skin cancer is the ultraviolet (UV) radiation found in sunlight. In addition to its carcinogenic potential, UV radiation is also immune suppressive. In fact, data from studies with both experimental animals and biopsy proven skin cancer patients suggest that there is an association between the immune suppressive effects of UV radiation and its carcinogenic potential. The focus of this manuscript will be to review the mechanisms underlying the induction of immune suppression following UV exposure. Particular attention will be directed to the role of soluble mediators in activating immune suppression.

  9. Mechanisms underlying UV-induced immune suppression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ullrich, Stephen E.

    2005-01-01

    Skin cancer is the most prevalent form of human neoplasia. Estimates suggest that in excess of one million new cases of skin cancer will be diagnosed this year alone in the United States (www.cancer.org/statistics). Fortunately, because of their highly visible location, skin cancers are more rapidly diagnosed and more easily treated than other types of cancer. Be that as it may, approximately 10,000 Americans a year die from skin cancer. The cost of treating non-melanoma skin cancer is estimated to be in excess of US$ 650 million a year [J.G. Chen, A.B. Fleischer, E.D. Smith, C. Kancler, N.D. Goldman, P.M. Williford, S.R. Feldman, Cost of non-melanoma skin cancer treatment in the United States, Dermatol. Surg. 27 (2001) 1035-1038], and when melanoma is included, the estimated cost of treating skin cancer in the United States is estimated to rise to US$ 2.9 billion annually (www.cancer.org/statistics). Because the morbidity and mortality associated with skin cancer is a major public health problem, it is important to understand the mechanisms underlying skin cancer development. The primary cause of skin cancer is the ultraviolet (UV) radiation found in sunlight. In addition to its carcinogenic potential, UV radiation is also immune suppressive. In fact, data from studies with both experimental animals and biopsy proven skin cancer patients suggest that there is an association between the immune suppressive effects of UV radiation and its carcinogenic potential. The focus of this manuscript will be to review the mechanisms underlying the induction of immune suppression following UV exposure. Particular attention will be directed to the role of soluble mediators in activating immune suppression

  10. Two distinct neural mechanisms underlying indirect reciprocity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Takamitsu; Takezawa, Masanori; Nakawake, Yo; Kunimatsu, Akira; Yamasue, Hidenori; Nakamura, Mitsuhiro; Miyashita, Yasushi; Masuda, Naoki

    2014-03-18

    Cooperation is a hallmark of human society. Humans often cooperate with strangers even if they will not meet each other again. This so-called indirect reciprocity enables large-scale cooperation among nonkin and can occur based on a reputation mechanism or as a succession of pay-it-forward behavior. Here, we provide the functional and anatomical neural evidence for two distinct mechanisms governing the two types of indirect reciprocity. Cooperation occurring as reputation-based reciprocity specifically recruited the precuneus, a region associated with self-centered cognition. During such cooperative behavior, the precuneus was functionally connected with the caudate, a region linking rewards to behavior. Furthermore, the precuneus of a cooperative subject had a strong resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) with the caudate and a large gray matter volume. In contrast, pay-it-forward reciprocity recruited the anterior insula (AI), a brain region associated with affective empathy. The AI was functionally connected with the caudate during cooperation occurring as pay-it-forward reciprocity, and its gray matter volume and rsFC with the caudate predicted the tendency of such cooperation. The revealed difference is consistent with the existing results of evolutionary game theory: although reputation-based indirect reciprocity robustly evolves as a self-interested behavior in theory, pay-it-forward indirect reciprocity does not on its own. The present study provides neural mechanisms underlying indirect reciprocity and suggests that pay-it-forward reciprocity may not occur as myopic profit maximization but elicit emotional rewards.

  11. Dissociable cognitive mechanisms underlying human path integration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiener, Jan M; Berthoz, Alain; Wolbers, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Path integration is a fundamental mechanism of spatial navigation. In non-human species, it is assumed to be an online process in which a homing vector is updated continuously during an outward journey. In contrast, human path integration has been conceptualized as a configural process in which travelers store working memory representations of path segments, with the computation of a homing vector only occurring when required. To resolve this apparent discrepancy, we tested whether humans can employ different path integration strategies in the same task. Using a triangle completion paradigm, participants were instructed either to continuously update the start position during locomotion (continuous strategy) or to remember the shape of the outbound path and to calculate home vectors on basis of this representation (configural strategy). While overall homing accuracy was superior in the configural condition, participants were quicker to respond during continuous updating, strongly suggesting that homing vectors were computed online. Corroborating these findings, we observed reliable differences in head orientation during the outbound path: when participants applied the continuous updating strategy, the head deviated significantly from straight ahead in direction of the start place, which can be interpreted as a continuous motor expression of the homing vector. Head orientation-a novel online measure for path integration-can thus inform about the underlying updating mechanism already during locomotion. In addition to demonstrating that humans can employ different cognitive strategies during path integration, our two-systems view helps to resolve recent controversies regarding the role of the medial temporal lobe in human path integration.

  12. Mechanics of carbon nanotube scission under sonication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stegen, J

    2014-06-28

    As-produced carbon nanotubes come in bundles that must be exfoliated for practical applications in nanocomposites. Sonication not only causes the exfoliation of nanotube bundles but also unwanted scission. An understanding of how precisely sonication induces the scission and exfoliation of nanotubes will help maximising the degree of exfoliation while minimising scission. We present a theoretical study of the mechanics of carbon nanotube scission under sonicaton, based on the accepted view that it is caused by strong gradients in the fluid velocity near a transiently collapsing bubble. We calculate the length-dependent scission rate by taking the actual movement of the nanotube during the collapse of a bubble into account, allowing for the prediction of the temporal evolution of the length distribution of the nanotubes. We show that the dependence of the scission rate on the sonication settings and the nanotube properties results in non-universal, experiment-dependent scission kinetics potentially explaining the variety in experimentally observed scission kinetics. The non-universality arises from the dependence of the maximum strain rate of the fluid experienced by a nanotube on its length. The maximum strain rate that a nanotube experiences increases with decreasing distance to the bubble. As short nanotubes are dragged along more easily by the fluid flow they experience a higher maximum strain rate than longer nanotubes. This dependence of the maximum strain rate on nanotube length affects the scaling of tensile strength with terminal length. We find that the terminal length scales with tensile strength to the power of 1/1.16 instead of with an exponent of 1/2 as found when nanotube motion is neglected. Finally, we show that the mechanism we propose responsible for scission can also explain the exfoliation of carbon nanotube bundles.

  13. Vascular Adventitia Calcification and Its Underlying Mechanism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Na Li

    Full Text Available Previous research on vascular calcification has mainly focused on the vascular intima and media. However, we show here that vascular calcification may also occur in the adventitia. The purpose of this work is to help elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms underlying vascular calcification. The calcified lesions were examined by Von Kossa staining in ApoE-/- mice which were fed high fat diets (HFD for 48 weeks and human subjects aged 60 years and older that had died of coronary heart disease, heart failure or acute renal failure. Explant cultured fibroblasts and smooth muscle cells (SMCswere obtained from rat adventitia and media, respectively. After calcification induction, cells were collected for Alizarin Red S staining. Calcified lesions were observed in the aorta adventitia and coronary artery adventitia of ApoE-/-mice, as well as in the aorta adventitia of human subjects examined. Explant culture of fibroblasts, the primary cell type comprising the adventitia, was successfully induced for calcification after incubation with TGF-β1 (20 ng/ml + mineralization media for 4 days, and the phenotype conversion vascular adventitia fibroblasts into myofibroblasts was identified. Culture of SMCs, which comprise only a small percentage of all cells in the adventitia, in calcifying medium for 14 days resulted in significant calcification.Vascular calcification can occur in the adventitia. Adventitia calcification may arise from the fibroblasts which were transformed into myofibroblasts or smooth muscle cells.

  14. Proteoglycans remodeling in cancer: Underlying molecular mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theocharis, Achilleas D; Karamanos, Nikos K

    2017-11-08

    Extracellular matrix is a highly dynamic macromolecular network. Proteoglycans are major components of extracellular matrix playing key roles in its structural organization and cell signaling contributing to the control of numerous normal and pathological processes. As multifunctional molecules, proteoglycans participate in various cell functions during morphogenesis, wound healing, inflammation and tumorigenesis. Their interactions with matrix effectors, cell surface receptors and enzymes enable them with unique properties. In malignancy, extensive remodeling of tumor stroma is associated with marked alterations in proteoglycans' expression and structural variability. Proteoglycans exert diverse functions in tumor stroma in a cell-specific and context-specific manner and they mainly contribute to the formation of a permissive provisional matrix for tumor growth affecting tissue organization, cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions and tumor cell signaling. Proteoglycans also modulate cancer cell phenotype and properties, the development of drug resistance and tumor stroma angiogenesis. This review summarizes the proteoglycans remodeling and their novel biological roles in malignancies with particular emphasis to the underlying molecular mechanisms. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Mechanical behaviour of nuclear fuel under irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Guerin, Y.

    1985-01-01

    The main mechanical properties (fracture, thermal and irradiation creep) of oxide and carbide fuels are summarised and discussed. Some examples are given of the influence of these mechanical properties on the in-pile behaviour of fuel pins [fr

  16. Path integrals on causal sets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnston, Steven

    2009-01-01

    We describe a quantum mechanical model for particle propagation on a causal set. The model involves calculating a particle propagator by summing amplitudes assigned to trajectories within the causal set. This 'discrete path integral' is calculated using a matrix geometric series. Amplitudes are given which, when the causal set is generated by sprinkling points into 1+1 or 3+1 Minkowski spacetime, ensure the particle propagator agrees in a suitable sense, with the retarded causal propagator for the Klein-Gordon equation.

  17. Covariation in Natural Causal Induction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Patricia W.; Novick, Laura R.

    1991-01-01

    Biases and models usually offered by cognitive and social psychology and by philosophy to explain causal induction are evaluated with respect to focal sets (contextually determined sets of events over which covariation is computed). A probabilistic contrast model is proposed as underlying covariation computation in natural causal induction. (SLD)

  18. Thinking in a Foreign language reduces the causality bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz-Lago, Marcos; Matute, Helena

    2018-02-01

    The purpose of this research is to investigate the impact of a foreign language on the causality bias (i.e., the illusion that two events are causally related when they are not). We predict that using a foreign language could reduce the illusions of causality. A total of 36 native English speakers participated in Experiment 1, 80 native Spanish speakers in Experiment 2. They performed a standard contingency learning task, which can be used to detect causal illusions. Participants who performed the task in their native tongue replicated the illusion of causality effect, whereas those performing the task in their foreign language were more accurate in detecting that the two events were causally unrelated. Our results suggest that presenting the information in a foreign language could be used as a strategy to debias individuals against causal illusions, thereby facilitating more accurate judgements and decisions in non-contingent situations. They also contribute to the debate on the nature and underlying mechanisms of the foreign language effect, given that the illusion of causality is rooted in basic associative processes.

  19. Case Studies Nested in Fuzzy-Set QCA on Sufficiency: Formalizing Case Selection and Causal Inference

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Carsten Q.; Rohlfing, Ingo

    2016-01-01

    Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) is a method for cross-case analyses that works best when complemented with follow-up case studies focusing on the causal quality of the solution and its constitutive terms, the underlying causal mechanisms, and potentially omitted conditions. The anchorage of QCA in set theory demands criteria for follow-up…

  20. Epigenetic mechanisms underlying nervous system diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A; Mehler, Mark F

    2018-01-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms act as control systems for modulating genomic structure and activity in response to evolving profiles of cell-extrinsic, cell-cell, and cell-intrinsic signals. These dynamic processes are responsible for mediating cell- and tissue-specific gene expression and function and gene-gene and gene-environmental interactions. The major epigenetic mechanisms include DNA methylation and hydroxymethylation; histone protein posttranslational modifications, nucleosome remodeling/repositioning, and higher-order chromatin reorganization; noncoding RNA regulation; and RNA editing. These mechanisms are intimately involved in executing fundamental genomic programs, including gene transcription, posttranscriptional RNA processing and transport, translation, X-chromosome inactivation, genomic imprinting, retrotransposon regulation, DNA replication, and DNA repair and the maintenance of genomic stability. For the nervous system, epigenetics offers a novel and robust framework for explaining how brain development and aging occur, neural cellular diversity is generated, synaptic and neural network connectivity and plasticity are mediated, and complex cognitive and behavioral phenotypes are inherited transgenerationally. Epigenetic factors and processes are, not surprisingly, implicated in nervous system disease pathophysiology through several emerging paradigms - mutations and genetic variation in genes encoding epigenetic factors; impairments in epigenetic factor expression, localization, and function; epigenetic mechanisms modulating disease-associated factors and pathways; and the presence of deregulated epigenetic profiles in central and peripheral tissues. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. An investigation into the mechanism underlying enhanced ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The solubilisation of primary sewage sludge under sulphate reducing conditions was conducted in controlled flask studies and previously reported findings of enhanced hydrolysis were confirmed. The maximum percentage solubilisation obtained in this study over a 10-day period was 31% and 64% for the methanogenic ...

  2. Supersymmetric quantum mechanics under point singularities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Uchino, Takashi; Tsutsui, Izumi

    2003-01-01

    We provide a systematic study on the possibility of supersymmetry (SUSY) for one-dimensional quantum mechanical systems consisting of a pair of lines R or intervals [-l, l] each having a point singularity. We consider the most general singularities and walls (boundaries) at x = ±l admitted quantum mechanically, using a U(2) family of parameters to specify one singularity and similarly a U(1) family of parameters to specify one wall. With these parameter freedoms, we find that for a certain subfamily the line systems acquire an N = 1 SUSY which can be enhanced to N = 4 if the parameters are further tuned, and that these SUSY are generically broken except for a special case. The interval systems, on the other hand, can accommodate N = 2 or N = 4 SUSY, broken or unbroken, and exhibit a rich variety of (degenerate) spectra. Our SUSY systems include the familiar SUSY systems with the Dirac δ(x)-potential, and hence are extensions of the known SUSY quantum mechanics to those with general point singularities and walls. The self-adjointness of the supercharge in relation to the self-adjointness of the Hamiltonian is also discussed

  3. Polymers under mechanical stress- an NMR investigation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boehme, Ute; Scheler, Ulrich [Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research Dresden (Germany); Xu, Bo; Leisen, Johannes; Beckham, Haskell W. [Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia (United States)

    2010-07-01

    Low-field NMR using permanent magnets in Halbach arrangements permit NMR investigation without the limits present in high-field NMR. The lower field in conjunction with confined stray field permit the application of NMR, in particular relaxation NMR in a stretching apparatus and a rheometer. Crystalline and amorphous fraction of semi-crystalline polymers are distinguished by their transverse relaxation times. Upon mechanical load the relaxation times of the amorphous fraction changes as seen in in-situ measurements on polypropylene rods. During the formation of a neck the crystalline fraction becomes more prominent.

  4. Causal Discovery from Nonstationary/Heterogeneous Data: Skeleton Estimation and Orientation Determination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Kun; Huang, Biwei; Zhang, Jiji; Glymour, Clark; Schölkopf, Bernhard

    2017-08-01

    It is commonplace to encounter nonstationary or heterogeneous data, of which the underlying generating process changes over time or across data sets (the data sets may have different experimental conditions or data collection conditions). Such a distribution shift feature presents both challenges and opportunities for causal discovery. In this paper we develop a principled framework for causal discovery from such data, called Constraint-based causal Discovery from Nonstationary/heterogeneous Data (CD-NOD), which addresses two important questions. First, we propose an enhanced constraint-based procedure to detect variables whose local mechanisms change and recover the skeleton of the causal structure over observed variables. Second, we present a way to determine causal orientations by making use of independence changes in the data distribution implied by the underlying causal model, benefiting from information carried by changing distributions. Experimental results on various synthetic and real-world data sets are presented to demonstrate the efficacy of our methods.

  5. Mechanisms Underlying Sex Differences in Cannabis Use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calakos, Katina C; Bhatt, Shivani; Foster, Dawn W; Cosgrove, Kelly P

    2017-12-01

    Cannabis is the most commonly used illicit substance worldwide. In recent decades, highly concentrated products have flooded the market, and prevalence rates have increased. Gender differences exist in cannabis use, as men have higher prevalence of both cannabis use and cannabis use disorder (CUD), while women progress more rapidly from first use to CUD. This paper reviews findings from preclinical and human studies examining the sex-specific neurobiological underpinnings of cannabis use and CUD, and associations with psychiatric symptoms. Sex differences exist in the endocannabinoid system, in cannabis exposure effects on brain structure and function, and in the co-occurrence of cannabis use with symptoms of anxiety, depression and schizophrenia. In female cannabis users, anxiety symptoms correlate with larger amygdala volume and social anxiety disorder symptoms correlate with CUD symptoms. Female cannabis users are reported to be especially vulnerable to earlier onset of schizophrenia, and mixed trends emerge in the correlation of depressive symptoms with cannabis exposure in females and males. As prevalence of cannabis use may continue to increase given the shifting policy landscape regarding marijuana laws, understanding the neurobiological mechanisms of cannabis exposure in females and males is key. Examining these mechanisms may help inform future research on sex-specific pharmacological and behavioral interventions for women and men with high-risk cannabis use, comorbid psychiatric disease, and CUD.

  6. Habitats under Mechanical and Herbicide Management Regimes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wendy-Ann P. Isaac

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Commelina diffusa is a colonising species of banana orchard habitats in St. Vincent in the Windward Islands of the Caribbean. In the present study, the population dynamics of C. diffusa were investigated in response to mechanical weed management with either a rotary string trimmer or glufosinate in ruderal and banana habitats. The study focused on density and size distribution of the weed over time and their response to two weed management strategies. The population dynamics of C. diffusa differed between the two habitats. Seedling establishment appeared to be an important factor influencing the dynamics of C. diffusa in banana orchards as there was little recruitment of seeds with less flower production compared with ruderal habitats where plants produced more flowers. Plants of C. diffusa in the banana orchard habitat had a longer growth cycle. In the banana orchard habitat, the C. diffusa population was greater and the plants were shorter with mechanical management than in areas treated with glufosinate. The results suggest that it is possible to manipulate the dynamics of C. diffusa in banana orchards as there is less chance of seed recruitment. Further research is necessary to refine an IPM approach for the management of C. diffusa.

  7. Neural networks for action representation underlying automatic mimicry: A functional magnetic-resonance imaging and dynamic causal modeling study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akihiro T Sasaki

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Automatic mimicry is based on the tight linkage between motor and perception action representations in which internal models play a key role. Based on the anatomical connection, we hypothesized that the direct effective connectivity from the posterior superior temporal sulcus (pSTS to the ventral premotor area (PMv formed an inverse internal model, converting visual representation into a motor plan, and that reverse connectivity formed a forward internal model, converting the motor plan into a sensory outcome of action. To test this hypothesis, we employed dynamic causal-modeling analysis with functional magnetic-resonance imaging. Twenty-four normal participants underwent a change-detection task involving two visually-presented balls that were either manually rotated by the investigator’s right hand (‘Hand’ or automatically rotated. The effective connectivity from the pSTS to the PMv was enhanced by hand observation and suppressed by execution, corresponding to the inverse model. Opposite effects were observed from the PMv to the pSTS, suggesting the forward model. Additionally, both execution and hand observation commonly enhanced the effective connectivity from the pSTS to the inferior parietal lobule (IPL, the IPL to the primary sensorimotor cortex (S/M1, the PMv to the IPL, and the PMv to the S/M1. Representation of the hand action therefore was implemented in the motor system including the S/M1. During hand observation, effective connectivity toward the pSTS was suppressed whereas that toward the PMv and S/M1 was enhanced. Thus the action-representation network acted as a dynamic feedback-control system during action observation.

  8. Physical and chemical mechanisms underlying hematoma evolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cho, K.J.; Fanders, B.L.; Smid, A.R.; McLaughlin, P.

    1986-01-01

    Angiostat, a new collagen embolic material supplied at a concentration of 35 mg/ml (Target Therapeutics, Los Angeles) was used for flow-directed hepatic artery embolization in a series of rabbits to examine its acute effects on hepatic microcirculation. Arteriograms were obtained both before and after embolization. The aorta and portal vein were perfused with two different colors of Microfil after the animals were killed,. Cleared liver specimens were examined under a dissection microscope. Extent of dearterialization, status of portal sinusoidal perfusion, and collateral formation after embolization with Angiostat were evaluated. Results will be compared with results achieved using other liquid and particulate embolic agents

  9. Environmental genotoxicity: Probing the underlying mechanisms

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shugart, L. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States); Theodorakis, C. [Tennessee Univ., Knoxville, TN (United States)

    1993-12-31

    Environmental pollution is a complex issue because of the diversity of anthropogenic agents, both chemical and physical, that have been detected and catalogued. The consequences to biota from exposure to genotoxic agents present an additional problem because of the potential for these agents to produce adverse change at the cellular and organismal levels. Past studies in genetic toxicology at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory have focused on structural damage to the DNA of environmental species that may occur after exposure to genotoxic agents and the use of this information to document exposure and to monitor remediation. In an effort to predict effects at the population, community and ecosystem levels, current studies in genetic ecotoxicology are attempting to characterize the biological mechanisms at the gene level that regulate and limit the response of an individual organism to genotoxic factors in their environment.

  10. Space, time and causality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lucas, J.R.

    1984-01-01

    Originating from lectures given to first year undergraduates reading physics and philosophy or mathematics and philosophy, formal logic is applied to issues and the elucidation of problems in space, time and causality. No special knowledge of relativity theory or quantum mechanics is needed. The text is interspersed with exercises and each chapter is preceded by a suggested 'preliminary reading' and followed by 'further reading' references. (U.K.)

  11. Physiological mechanisms underlying animal social behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seebacher, Frank; Krause, Jens

    2017-08-19

    Many species of animal live in groups, and the group represents the organizational level within which ecological and evolutionary processes occur. Understanding these processes, therefore, relies on knowledge of the mechanisms that permit or constrain group formation. We suggest that physiological capacities and differences in physiology between individuals modify fission-fusion dynamics. Differences between individuals in locomotor capacity and metabolism may lead to fission of groups and sorting of individuals into groups with similar physiological phenotypes. Environmental impacts such as hypoxia can influence maximum group sizes and structure in fish schools by altering access to oxygenated water. The nutritional environment determines group cohesion, and the increase in information collected by the group means that individuals should rely more on social information and form more cohesive groups in uncertain environments. Changing environmental contexts require rapid responses by individuals to maintain group coordination, which are mediated by neuroendocrine signalling systems such as nonapeptides and steroid hormones. Brain processing capacity may constrain social complexity by limiting information processing. Failure to evaluate socially relevant information correctly limits social interactions, which is seen, for example, in autism. Hence, functioning of a group relies to a large extent on the perception and appropriate processing of signals from conspecifics. Many if not all physiological systems are mechanistically linked, and therefore have synergistic effects on social behaviour. A challenge for the future lies in understanding these interactive effects, which will improve understanding of group dynamics, particularly in changing environments.This article is part of the themed issue 'Physiological determinants of social behaviour in animals'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  12. Mechanisms Underlying the Influence of Disruptive Child Behavior on Interparental Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wymbs, Brian T.

    2012-01-01

    Prospective and experimental manipulations of child behavior have demonstrated that disruptive child behavior causes interparental discord. However, research has yet to test for mechanisms underlying this causal pathway. There is reason to suspect parent affect and parenting behavior explain child effects on interparental relations. To investigate this hypothesis, parent couples of 9- to 12-year-old boys and girls with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD; n=51) and without ADHD (n=39) were randomly assigned to interact with a confederate child exhibiting “disruptive” or “typical” behavior. Parents rated their own affect as well as the quality of their partner's parenting and communication immediately following the interaction. Observers also coded the quality of parenting and communication behaviors parents exhibited during the interaction. Parents who interacted with disruptive confederates reported lower positive affect and higher negative affect than those who interacted with typical confederates. Parents were also noted by their partners and observers to parent disruptive confederates more negatively than typical confederates. Multilevel mediation models with observational coding and partner ratings both found that negative parenting explained the causal pathway between disruptive child behavior and negative communication. Exploratory analyses revealed that the strength of this pathway did not differ between parents of children with and without ADHD. Parent affect was not found to explain child effects on interparental communication. Though methodological issues limit the generalizability of these findings, results indicate that negative parenting may be one mechanism through which disruptive children cause interparental discord. PMID:21875193

  13. Classical planning and causal implicatures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blackburn, Patrick Rowan; Benotti, Luciana

    In this paper we motivate and describe a dialogue manager (called Frolog) which uses classical planning to infer causal implicatures. A causal implicature is a type of Gricean relation implicature, a highly context dependent form of inference. As we shall see, causal implicatures are important...... to generate clarification requests"; as a result we can model task-oriented dialogue as an interactive process locally structured by negotiation of the underlying task. We give several examples of Frolog-human dialog, discuss the limitations imposed by the classical planning paradigm, and indicate...

  14. Causally nonseparable processes admitting a causal model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feix, Adrien; Araújo, Mateus; Brukner, Caslav

    2016-01-01

    A recent framework of quantum theory with no global causal order predicts the existence of ‘causally nonseparable’ processes. Some of these processes produce correlations incompatible with any causal order (they violate so-called ‘causal inequalities’ analogous to Bell inequalities ) while others do not (they admit a ‘causal model’ analogous to a local model ). Here we show for the first time that bipartite causally nonseparable processes with a causal model exist, and give evidence that they have no clear physical interpretation. We also provide an algorithm to generate processes of this kind and show that they have nonzero measure in the set of all processes. We demonstrate the existence of processes which stop violating causal inequalities but are still causally nonseparable when mixed with a certain amount of ‘white noise’. This is reminiscent of the behavior of Werner states in the context of entanglement and nonlocality. Finally, we provide numerical evidence for the existence of causally nonseparable processes which have a causal model even when extended with an entangled state shared among the parties. (paper)

  15. The Causal Factors Underlying the Unwillingness of Farm Laborers’ Migration to Towns: a Case Study of Yunnan Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuo Li

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Farmers’ settling down in small towns is not only a process of identity-changing, i.e., from rural population into urban population, but also a process of institutional change. At present, China’s urbanization rate is 52.57%. However, in reality, the farm laborers do not often hold a positive and active view about migrating to the towns permanently. Statistics show that in 6 counties in Yunnan Shangri-La, Xishuangbanna, Lijiang border areas and 5 central Yunnan counties, the non-agricultural household staff does not grow very rapidly. By analyzing a lot of underlying factors, this paper finds that influential factors for the transformation of rural population to towns may vary, mainly including factors such as fewer jobs, the issue of rural land use, the poor quality of education, higher level of living standard, and also puts forward some solutions accordingly.

  16. Improving arithmetic performance with number sense training: an investigation of underlying mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Joonkoo; Brannon, Elizabeth M

    2014-10-01

    A nonverbal primitive number sense allows approximate estimation and mental manipulations on numerical quantities without the use of numerical symbols. In a recent randomized controlled intervention study in adults, we demonstrated that repeated training on a non-symbolic approximate arithmetic task resulted in improved exact symbolic arithmetic performance, suggesting a causal relationship between the primitive number sense and arithmetic competence. Here, we investigate the potential mechanisms underlying this causal relationship. We constructed multiple training conditions designed to isolate distinct cognitive components of the approximate arithmetic task. We then assessed the effectiveness of these training conditions in improving exact symbolic arithmetic in adults. We found that training on approximate arithmetic, but not on numerical comparison, numerical matching, or visuo-spatial short-term memory, improves symbolic arithmetic performance. In addition, a second experiment revealed that our approximate arithmetic task does not require verbal encoding of number, ruling out an alternative explanation that participants use exact symbolic strategies during approximate arithmetic training. Based on these results, we propose that nonverbal numerical quantity manipulation is one key factor that drives the link between the primitive number sense and symbolic arithmetic competence. Future work should investigate whether training young children on approximate arithmetic tasks even before they solidify their symbolic number understanding is fruitful for improving readiness for math education. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Mechanisms underlying epithelium-dependent relaxation in rat bronchioles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kroigaard, Christel; Dalsgaard, Thomas; Simonsen, Ulf

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the mechanisms underlying epithelium-derived hyperpolarizing factor (EpDHF)-type relaxation in rat bronchioles. Immunohistochemistry was performed, and rat bronchioles and pulmonary arteries were mounted in microvascular myographs for functional studies. An opener of small...

  18. Underlying Mechanisms of Improving Physical Activity Behavior after Rehabilitation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Ploeg, Hidde P.; Streppel, Kitty R.M.; van der Beek, Allard J.; Woude, Luc H.V.; van Harten, Willem H.; Vollenbroek-Hutten, Miriam Marie Rosé; van Mechelen, Willem

    2008-01-01

    Background: Regular physical activity is beneficial for the health and functioning of people with a disability. Effective components of successful physical activity promotion interventions should be identified and disseminated. Purpose: To study the underlying mechanisms of the combined sport

  19. Principal stratification in causal inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frangakis, Constantine E; Rubin, Donald B

    2002-03-01

    Many scientific problems require that treatment comparisons be adjusted for posttreatment variables, but the estimands underlying standard methods are not causal effects. To address this deficiency, we propose a general framework for comparing treatments adjusting for posttreatment variables that yields principal effects based on principal stratification. Principal stratification with respect to a posttreatment variable is a cross-classification of subjects defined by the joint potential values of that posttreatment variable tinder each of the treatments being compared. Principal effects are causal effects within a principal stratum. The key property of principal strata is that they are not affected by treatment assignment and therefore can be used just as any pretreatment covariate. such as age category. As a result, the central property of our principal effects is that they are always causal effects and do not suffer from the complications of standard posttreatment-adjusted estimands. We discuss briefly that such principal causal effects are the link between three recent applications with adjustment for posttreatment variables: (i) treatment noncompliance, (ii) missing outcomes (dropout) following treatment noncompliance. and (iii) censoring by death. We then attack the problem of surrogate or biomarker endpoints, where we show, using principal causal effects, that all current definitions of surrogacy, even when perfectly true, do not generally have the desired interpretation as causal effects of treatment on outcome. We go on to forrmulate estimands based on principal stratification and principal causal effects and show their superiority.

  20. Discrete causal theory emergent spacetime and the causal metric hypothesis

    CERN Document Server

    Dribus, Benjamin F

    2017-01-01

    This book evaluates and suggests potentially critical improvements to causal set theory, one of the best-motivated approaches to the outstanding problems of fundamental physics. Spacetime structure is of central importance to physics beyond general relativity and the standard model. The causal metric hypothesis treats causal relations as the basis of this structure. The book develops the consequences of this hypothesis under the assumption of a fundamental scale, with smooth spacetime geometry viewed as emergent. This approach resembles causal set theory, but differs in important ways; for example, the relative viewpoint, emphasizing relations between pairs of events, and relationships between pairs of histories, is central. The book culminates in a dynamical law for quantum spacetime, derived via generalized path summation.

  1. Stress analysis in a functionally graded disc under mechanical loads ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Stress analysis in a functionally graded disc under mechanical loads and a steady state temperature distribution. HASAN ÇALLIO ˘GLU. Department of Mechanical Engineering, Pamukkale University, 20070,. Denizli, Turkey e-mail: hcallioglu@pau.edu.tr. MS received 25 November 2009; revised 12 August 2010; accepted.

  2. Causal Evidence for a Mechanism of Semantic Integration in the Angular Gyrus as Revealed by High-Definition Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Amy Rose; Peelle, Jonathan E; Bonner, Michael F; Grossman, Murray; Hamilton, Roy H

    2016-03-30

    A defining aspect of human cognition is the ability to integrate conceptual information into complex semantic combinations. For example, we can comprehend "plaid" and "jacket" as individual concepts, but we can also effortlessly combine these concepts to form the semantic representation of "plaid jacket." Many neuroanatomic models of semantic memory propose that heteromodal cortical hubs integrate distributed semantic features into coherent representations. However, little work has specifically examined these proposed integrative mechanisms and the causal role of these regions in semantic integration. Here, we test the hypothesis that the angular gyrus (AG) is critical for integrating semantic information by applying high-definition transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to an fMRI-guided region-of-interest in the left AG. We found that anodal stimulation to the left AG modulated semantic integration but had no effect on a letter-string control task. Specifically, anodal stimulation to the left AG resulted in faster comprehension of semantically meaningful combinations like "tiny radish" relative to non-meaningful combinations, such as "fast blueberry," when compared to the effects observed during sham stimulation and stimulation to a right-hemisphere control brain region. Moreover, the size of the effect from brain stimulation correlated with the degree of semantic coherence between the word pairs. These findings demonstrate that the left AG plays a causal role in the integration of lexical-semantic information, and that high-definition tDCS to an associative cortical hub can selectively modulate integrative processes in semantic memory. A major goal of neuroscience is to understand the neural basis of behaviors that are fundamental to human intelligence. One essential behavior is the ability to integrate conceptual knowledge from semantic memory, allowing us to construct an almost unlimited number of complex concepts from a limited set of basic

  3. Classical planning and causal implicatures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blackburn, Patrick Rowan; Benotti, Luciana

    for understanding the structure of task-oriented dialogues. Such dialogues locate conversational acts in contexts containing both pending tasks and the acts which bring them about. The ability to infer causal implicatures lets us interleave decisions about "how to sequence actions" with decisions about "when......In this paper we motivate and describe a dialogue manager (called Frolog) which uses classical planning to infer causal implicatures. A causal implicature is a type of Gricean relation implicature, a highly context dependent form of inference. As we shall see, causal implicatures are important...... to generate clarification requests"; as a result we can model task-oriented dialogue as an interactive process locally structured by negotiation of the underlying task. We give several examples of Frolog-human dialog, discuss the limitations imposed by the classical planning paradigm, and indicate...

  4. Obstructive sleep apnea and dyslipidemia: evidence and underlying mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adedayo, Ajibola Monsur; Olafiranye, Oladipupo; Smith, David; Hill, Alethea; Zizi, Ferdinand; Brown, Clinton; Jean-Louis, Girardin

    2014-03-01

    Over the past half century, evidence has been accumulating on the emergence of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), the most prevalent sleep-disordered breathing, as a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease. A significant body of research has been focused on elucidating the complex interplay between OSA and cardiovascular risk factors, including dyslipidemia, obesity, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus that portend increased morbidity and mortality in susceptible individuals. Although a clear causal relationship of OSA and dyslipidemia is yet to be demonstrated, there is increasing evidence that chronic intermittent hypoxia, a major component of OSA, is independently associated and possibly the root cause of the dyslipidemia via the generation of stearoyl-coenzyme A desaturase-1 and reactive oxygen species, peroxidation of lipids, and sympathetic system dysfunction. The aim of this review is to highlight the relationship between OSA and dyslipidemia in the development of atherosclerosis and present the pathophysiologic mechanisms linking its association to clinical disease. Issues relating to epidemiology, confounding factors, significant gaps in research and future directions are also discussed.

  5. Amount of fear extinction changes its underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    An, Bobae; Kim, Jihye; Park, Kyungjoon; Lee, Sukwon; Song, Sukwoon; Choi, Sukwoo

    2017-07-03

    There has been a longstanding debate on whether original fear memory is inhibited or erased after extinction. One possibility that reconciles this uncertainty is that the inhibition and erasure mechanisms are engaged in different phases (early or late) of extinction. In this study, using single-session extinction training and its repetition (multiple-session extinction training), we investigated the inhibition and erasure mechanisms in the prefrontal cortex and amygdala of rats, where neural circuits underlying extinction reside. The inhibition mechanism was prevalent with single-session extinction training but faded when single-session extinction training was repeated. In contrast, the erasure mechanism became prevalent when single-session extinction training was repeated. Moreover, ablating the intercalated neurons of amygdala, which are responsible for maintaining extinction-induced inhibition, was no longer effective in multiple-session extinction training. We propose that the inhibition mechanism operates primarily in the early phase of extinction training, and the erasure mechanism takes over after that.

  6. Causal ubiquity in quantum physics. A superluminal and local-causal physical ontology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neelamkavil, Raphael

    2014-01-01

    A fixed highest criterial velocity (of light) in STR (special theory of relativity) is a convention for a layer of physical inquiry. QM (Quantum Mechanics) avoids action-at-a-distance using this concept, but accepts non-causality and action-at-a-distance in EPR (Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen-Paradox) entanglement experiments. Even in such allegedly [non-causal] processes, something exists processually in extension-motion, between the causal and the [non-causal]. If STR theoretically allows real-valued superluminal communication between EPR entangled particles, quantum processes become fully causal. That is, the QM world is sub-luminally, luminally and superluminally local-causal throughout, and the Law of Causality is ubiquitous in the micro-world. Thus, ''probabilistic causality'' is a merely epistemic term.

  7. Causal ubiquity in quantum physics. A superluminal and local-causal physical ontology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Neelamkavil, Raphael

    2014-07-01

    A fixed highest criterial velocity (of light) in STR (special theory of relativity) is a convention for a layer of physical inquiry. QM (Quantum Mechanics) avoids action-at-a-distance using this concept, but accepts non-causality and action-at-a-distance in EPR (Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen-Paradox) entanglement experiments. Even in such allegedly [non-causal] processes, something exists processually in extension-motion, between the causal and the [non-causal]. If STR theoretically allows real-valued superluminal communication between EPR entangled particles, quantum processes become fully causal. That is, the QM world is sub-luminally, luminally and superluminally local-causal throughout, and the Law of Causality is ubiquitous in the micro-world. Thus, ''probabilistic causality'' is a merely epistemic term.

  8. Causality in Science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina Puente Águeda

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Causality is a fundamental notion in every field of science. Since the times of Aristotle, causal relationships have been a matter of study as a way to generate knowledge and provide for explanations. In this paper I review the notion of causality through different scientific areas such as physics, biology, engineering, etc. In the scientific area, causality is usually seen as a precise relation: the same cause provokes always the same effect. But in the everyday world, the links between cause and effect are frequently imprecise or imperfect in nature. Fuzzy logic offers an adequate framework for dealing with imperfect causality, so a few notions of fuzzy causality are introduced.

  9. Mechanical Property Analysis of Circular Polymer Membrane under Uniform Pressure

    OpenAIRE

    Jianbing, Sang; Xiang, Li; Sufang, Xing; Wenjia, Wang

    2017-01-01

    Mechanical property analysis of circular hyperelastic polymer membrane under uniform pressure has been researched in this work. The polymer membrane material is assumed to be homogeneous and isotropic and incompressibility of materials has been considered. Based on the modified stain energy function from Gao and nonmomental theory of axial symmetry thin shell, finite deformation analysis of polymer membrane under uniform pressure has been proposed in current configuration and governing equati...

  10. Emotional responses to music: the need to consider underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juslin, Patrik N; Västfjäll, Daniel

    2008-10-01

    Research indicates that people value music primarily because of the emotions it evokes. Yet, the notion of musical emotions remains controversial, and researchers have so far been unable to offer a satisfactory account of such emotions. We argue that the study of musical emotions has suffered from a neglect of underlying mechanisms. Specifically, researchers have studied musical emotions without regard to how they were evoked, or have assumed that the emotions must be based on the "default" mechanism for emotion induction, a cognitive appraisal. Here, we present a novel theoretical framework featuring six additional mechanisms through which music listening may induce emotions: (1) brain stem reflexes, (2) evaluative conditioning, (3) emotional contagion, (4) visual imagery, (5) episodic memory, and (6) musical expectancy. We propose that these mechanisms differ regarding such characteristics as their information focus, ontogenetic development, key brain regions, cultural impact, induction speed, degree of volitional influence, modularity, and dependence on musical structure. By synthesizing theory and findings from different domains, we are able to provide the first set of hypotheses that can help researchers to distinguish among the mechanisms. We show that failure to control for the underlying mechanism may lead to inconsistent or non-interpretable findings. Thus, we argue that the new framework may guide future research and help to resolve previous disagreements in the field. We conclude that music evokes emotions through mechanisms that are not unique to music, and that the study of musical emotions could benefit the emotion field as a whole by providing novel paradigms for emotion induction.

  11. Study on Mechanical Properties of Barite Concrete under Impact Load

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Z. F.; Cheng, K.; Wu, D.; Gan, Y. C.; Tao, Q. W.

    2018-03-01

    In order to research the mechanical properties of Barite concrete under impact load, a group of concrete compression tests was carried out under the impact load by using the drop test machine. A high-speed camera was used to record the failure process of the specimen during the impact process. The test results show that:with the increase of drop height, the loading rate, the peak load, the strain under peak load, the strain rate and the dynamic increase factor (DIF) all increase gradually. The ultimate tensile strain is close to each other, and the time of impact force decreases significantly, showing significant strain rate effect.

  12. Damage mechanisms in PBT-GF30 under thermo-mechanical cyclic loading

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schaaf, A.; De Monte, M.; Hoffmann, C.; Vormwald, M.; Quaresimin, M.

    2014-01-01

    The scope of this paper is the investigation of damage mechanisms at microscopic scale on a short glass fiber reinforced polybutylene terephthalate (PBT-GF30) under thermo-mechanical cyclic loading. In addition the principal mechanisms are verified through micro mechanical FE models. In order to investigate the fatigue behavior of the material both isothermal strain controlled fatigue (ISCF) tests at three different temperatures and thermo-mechanical fatigue (TMF) tests were conducted on plain and notched specimens, manufactured by injection molding. The goal of the work is to determine the damage mechanisms occurring under TMF conditions and to compare them with the mechanisms occurring under ISCF. For this reason fracture surfaces of TMF and ISCF samples loaded at different temperature levels were analyzed using scanning electron microscopy. Furthermore, specimens that failed under TMF were examined on microsections revealing insight into both crack initiation and crack propagation. The findings of this investigation give valuable information about the main damage mechanisms of PBT-GF30 under TMF loading and serve as basis for the development of a TMF life estimation methodology

  13. Modeling of Interactions between the Zebrafish Hatching Enzyme ZHE1 and A Series of Metal Oxide Nanoparticles: Nano-QSAR and Causal Analysis of Inactivation Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalia Sizochenko

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The quantitative relationships between the activity of zebrafish ZHE1 enzyme and a series of experimental and physicochemical features of 24 metal oxide nanoparticles were revealed. Vital characteristics of the nanoparticles’ structure were reflected using both experimental and theoretical descriptors. The developed quantitative structure–activity relationship model for nanoparticles (nano-QSAR was capable of predicting the enzyme inactivation based on four descriptors: the hydrodynamic radius, mass density, the Wigner–Seitz radius, and the covalent index. The nano-QSAR model was calculated using the non-linear regression tree M5P algorithm. The developed model is characterized by high robustness R2bagging = 0.90 and external predictivity Q2EXT = 0.93. This model is in agreement with modern theories of aquatic toxicity. Dissolution and size-dependent characteristics are among the key driving forces for enzyme inactivation. It was proven that ZnO, CuO, Cr2O3, and NiO nanoparticles demonstrated strong inhibitory effects because of their solubility. The proposed approach could be used as a non-experimental alternative to animal testing. Additionally, methods of causal discovery were applied to shed light on the mechanisms and modes of action.

  14. Neural Circuitry and Plasticity Mechanisms Underlying Delay Eyeblink Conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freeman, John H.; Steinmetz, Adam B.

    2011-01-01

    Pavlovian eyeblink conditioning has been used extensively as a model system for examining the neural mechanisms underlying associative learning. Delay eyeblink conditioning depends on the intermediate cerebellum ipsilateral to the conditioned eye. Evidence favors a two-site plasticity model within the cerebellum with long-term depression of…

  15. Causal ubiquity in quantum physics a superluminal and local-causal physical ontology

    CERN Document Server

    Neelamkavil, Raphael

    2014-01-01

    A fixed highest criterial velocity (of light) in STR (special theory of relativity) is a convention for a layer of physical inquiry. QM (Quantum Mechanics) avoids action-at-a-distance using this concept, but accepts non-causality and action-at-a-distance in EPR (Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen-Paradox) entanglement experiments. Even in such allegedly non-causal processes, something exists processually in extension-motion, between the causal and the non-causal. If STR theoretically allows real-valued superluminal communication between EPR entangled particles, quantum processes become fully causal. That

  16. Mechanism evaluation of a lifestyle intervention for patients with musculoskeletal pain who are overweight or obese: protocol for a causal mediation analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Hopin; Wiggers, John; Kamper, Steven J; Williams, Amanda; O'Brien, Kate M; Hodder, Rebecca K; Wolfenden, Luke; Yoong, Sze Lin; Campbell, Elizabeth; Haskins, Robin; Robson, Emma K; McAuley, James H; Williams, Christopher M

    2017-07-03

    Low back pain (LBP) and knee osteoarthritis (OA) are highly prevalent and disabling conditions that cause societal and economic impact worldwide. Two randomised controlled trials (RCTs) will evaluate the effectiveness of a multicomponent lifestyle intervention for patients with LBP and knee OA who are overweight or obese. The key targets of this intervention are to improve physical activity, modify diet and correct pain beliefs. These factors may explain how a lifestyle intervention exerts its effects on key patient-relevant outcomes: pain, disability and quality of life. The aim of this protocol is to describe a planned analysis of a mechanism evaluation for a lifestyle intervention for overweight or obese patients with LBP and knee OA. Causal mediation analyses of 2 two-armed RCTs. Both trials are part of a cohort-multiple RCT, embedded in routine health service delivery. In each respective trial, 160 patients with LBP and 120 patients with knee OA waiting for orthopaedic consultation will be randomised to a lifestyle intervention, or to remain part of the original cohort. The intervention consists of education and advice about the benefits of weight loss and physical activity, and the Australian New South Wales Get Healthy Service. All outcome measures including patient characteristics, primary and alternative mediators, outcomes, and potential confounders will be measured at baseline (T0). The primary mediator, weight, will be measured at 6 months post randomisation; alternative mediators including diet, physical activity and pain beliefs will be measured at 6 weeks post randomisation. All outcomes (pain, disability and quality of life) will be measured at 6 months post randomisation. Data will be analysed using causal mediation analysis with sensitivity analyses for sequential ignorability. All mediation models were specified a priori before completing data collection and without prior knowledge about the effectiveness of the intervention. The study is

  17. Causality in Europeanization Research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lynggaard, Kennet

    2012-01-01

    to develop discursive institutional analytical frameworks and something that comes close to the formulation of hypothesis on the effects of European Union (EU) policies and institutions on domestic change. Even if these efforts so far do not necessarily amount to substantive theories or claims of causality...... of discursive causalities towards more substantive claims of causality between EU policy and institutional initiatives and domestic change....

  18. Granger Causality and Unit Roots

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rodríguez-Caballero, Carlos Vladimir; Ventosa-Santaulària, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    , eventually rejecting the null hypothesis, even when the series are independent of each other. Moreover, controlling for these deterministic elements (in the auxiliary regressions of the test) does not preclude the possibility of drawing erroneous inferences. Granger-causality tests should not be used under...... stochastic nonstationarity, a property typically found in many macroeconomic variables....

  19. Permeability and mechanical properties of cracked glass under pressure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ougier-Simonin, A.

    2010-01-01

    Crack initiation and growth in brittle solids under tension have been extensively studied by various experimental, theoretical and numerical approaches. If has been established that dynamic brittle fracture is related to fundamental physical parameters and processes, such as crack speed, crack branching, surface roughening, and dynamic instabilities. On the other hand, less studies have been done in the area of compressive fracture despite its vital importance in geology, material science and engineering applications (such as the improvement and the insurance of the nuclear wastes storage). The present work aims to investigate thermo-mechanical cracking effects on elastic wave velocities, mechanical strength and permeability und r pressure to evaluate damage evolution, brittle failure and transport properties on a synthetic glass (SON 68), and to highlight the very different behavior of the glass amorphous structure compared to any rock structure. The original glass, produced in ideal conditions of slow cooling that prevent from any crack formation, exhibits a linear and reversible mechanical behavior and isotropic elastic velocities, as expected. It also presents a high strength as it fails at about 700 MPa of deviatoric stress for a confining pressure of 15 MPa. We choose to apply to some original glass samples a reproducible method (thermal treatment with a thermal shock of T=100,200 and 300 C) which creates cracks with a homogeneous distribution. The impact of the thermal treatment is clearly visible through the elastic wave velocity measurements as we observe crack closure under hydrostatic conditions (at about 30 MPa). For T ≥ 200 C, the glass mechanical behavior becomes non linear and records an irreversible damage. The total damage observed with the acoustic emissions in these samples underlines the combination of the thermal and the mechanical cracks which drive to the sample failure. The results obtained with pore fluid pressure show a very small

  20. Tools for Detecting Causality in Space Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, J.; Wing, S.

    2017-12-01

    Complex systems such as the solar and magnetospheric envivonment often exhibit patterns of behavior that suggest underlying organizing principles. Causality is a key organizing principle that is particularly difficult to establish in strongly coupled nonlinear systems, but essential for understanding and modeling the behavior of systems. While traditional methods of time-series analysis can identify linear correlations, they do not adequately quantify the distinction between causal and coincidental dependence. We discuss tools for detecting causality including: granger causality, transfer entropy, conditional redundancy, and convergent cross maps. The tools are illustrated by applications to magnetospheric and solar physics including radiation belt, Dst (a magnetospheric state variable), substorm, and solar cycle dynamics.

  1. Frictional behaviour of polymer films under mechanical and electrostatic loads

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ginés, R; Christen, R; Motavalli, M; Bergamini, A; Ermanni, P

    2013-01-01

    Different polymer foils, namely polyimide, FEP, PFA and PVDF were tested on a setup designed to measure the static coefficient of friction between them. The setup was designed according to the requirements of a damping device based on electrostatically tunable friction. The foils were tested under different mechanically applied forces and showed reproducible results for the static coefficient of friction. With the same setup the measurements were performed under an electric field as the source of the normal force. Up to a certain electric field the values were in good agreement. Beyond this field discrepancies were found. (paper)

  2. Reliability Issues and Solutions in Flexible Electronics Under Mechanical Fatigue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yi, Seol-Min; Choi, In-Suk; Kim, Byoung-Joon; Joo, Young-Chang

    2018-03-01

    Flexible devices are of significant interest due to their potential expansion of the application of smart devices into various fields, such as energy harvesting, biological applications and consumer electronics. Due to the mechanically dynamic operations of flexible electronics, their mechanical reliability must be thoroughly investigated to understand their failure mechanisms and lifetimes. Reliability issue caused by bending fatigue, one of the typical operational limitations of flexible electronics, has been studied using various test methodologies; however, electromechanical evaluations which are essential to assess the reliability of electronic devices for flexible applications had not been investigated because the testing method was not established. By employing the in situ bending fatigue test, we has studied the failure mechanism for various conditions and parameters, such as bending strain, fatigue area, film thickness, and lateral dimensions. Moreover, various methods for improving the bending reliability have been developed based on the failure mechanism. Nanostructures such as holes, pores, wires and composites of nanoparticles and nanotubes have been suggested for better reliability. Flexible devices were also investigated to find the potential failures initiated by complex structures under bending fatigue strain. In this review, the recent advances in test methodology, mechanism studies, and practical applications are introduced. Additionally, perspectives including the future advance to stretchable electronics are discussed based on the current achievements in research.

  3. Control of a perturbed under-actuated mechanical system

    KAUST Repository

    Zayane, Chadia

    2015-11-05

    In this work, the trajectory tracking problem for an under-actuated mechanical system in presence of unknown input disturbances is addressed. The studied inertia wheel inverted pendulum falls in the class of non minimum phase systems. The proposed high order sliding mode control architecture including a controller and differentiator allows to track accurately the predefined trajectory and to stabilize the internal dynamics. The robustness of the proposed approach is illustrated through different perturbation and output noise configurations.

  4. Neural mechanisms underlying morphine withdrawal in addicted patients: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nima Babhadiashar

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Morphine is one of the most potent alkaloid in opium, which has substantial medical uses and needs and it is the first active principle purified from herbal source. Morphine has commonly been used for relief of moderate to severe pain as it acts directly on the central nervous system; nonetheless, its chronic abuse increases tolerance and physical dependence, which is commonly known as opiate addiction. Morphine withdrawal syndrome is physiological and behavioral symptoms that stem from prolonged exposure to morphine. A majority of brain regions are hypofunctional over prolonged abstinence and acute morphine withdrawal. Furthermore, several neural mechanisms are likely to contribute to morphine withdrawal. The present review summarizes the literature pertaining to neural mechanisms underlying morphine withdrawal. Despite the fact that morphine withdrawal is a complex process, it is suggested that neural mechanisms play key roles in morphine withdrawal.

  5. An NMDA Receptor-Dependent Mechanism Underlies Inhibitory Synapse Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xinglong Gu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In the mammalian brain, GABAergic synaptic transmission provides inhibitory balance to glutamatergic excitatory drive and controls neuronal output. The molecular mechanisms underlying the development of GABAergic synapses remain largely unclear. Here, we report that NMDA-type ionotropic glutamate receptors (NMDARs in individual immature neurons are the upstream signaling molecules essential for GABAergic synapse development, which requires signaling via Calmodulin binding motif in the C0 domain of the NMDAR GluN1 subunit. Interestingly, in neurons lacking NMDARs, whereas GABAergic synaptic transmission is strongly reduced, the tonic inhibition mediated by extrasynaptic GABAA receptors is increased, suggesting a compensatory mechanism for the lack of synaptic inhibition. These results demonstrate a crucial role for NMDARs in specifying the development of inhibitory synapses, and suggest an important mechanism for controlling the establishment of the balance between synaptic excitation and inhibition in the developing brain.

  6. Giant panda׳s tooth enamel: Structure, mechanical behavior and toughening mechanisms under indentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weng, Z Y; Liu, Z Q; Ritchie, R O; Jiao, D; Li, D S; Wu, H L; Deng, L H; Zhang, Z F

    2016-12-01

    The giant panda׳s teeth possess remarkable load-bearing capacity and damage resistance for masticating bamboos. In this study, the hierarchical structure and mechanical behavior of the giant panda׳s tooth enamel were investigated under indentation. The effects of loading orientation and location on mechanical properties of the enamel were clarified and the evolution of damage in the enamel under increasing load evaluated. The nature of the damage, both at and beneath the indentation surfaces, and the underlying toughening mechanisms were explored. Indentation cracks invariably were seen to propagate along the internal interfaces, specifically the sheaths between enamel rods, and multiple extrinsic toughening mechanisms, e.g., crack deflection/twisting and uncracked-ligament bridging, were active to shield the tips of cracks from the applied stress. The giant panda׳s tooth enamel is analogous to human enamel in its mechanical properties, yet it has superior hardness and Young׳s modulus but inferior toughness as compared to the bamboo that pandas primarily feed on, highlighting the critical roles of the integration of underlying tissues in the entire tooth and the highly hydrated state of bamboo foods. Our objective is that this study can aid the understanding of the structure-mechanical property relations in the tooth enamel of mammals and further provide some insight on the food habits of the giant pandas. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Mechanical properties of graphene nanoribbons under uniaxial tensile strain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoneyama, Kazufumi; Yamanaka, Ayaka; Okada, Susumu

    2018-03-01

    Based on the density functional theory with the generalized gradient approximation, we investigated the mechanical properties of graphene nanoribbons in terms of their edge shape under a uniaxial tensile strain. The nanoribbons with armchair and zigzag edges retain their structure under a large tensile strain, while the nanoribbons with chiral edges are fragile against the tensile strain compared with those with armchair and zigzag edges. The fracture started at the cove region, which corresponds to the border between the zigzag and armchair edges for the nanoribbons with chiral edges. For the nanoribbons with armchair edges, the fracture started at one of the cove regions at the edges. In contrast, the fracture started at the inner region of the nanoribbons with zigzag edges. The bond elongation under the tensile strain depends on the mutual arrangement of covalent bonds with respect to the strain direction.

  8. Peripheral Receptor Mechanisms Underlying Orofacial Muscle Pain and Hyperalgesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saloman, Jami L.

    Musculoskeletal pain conditions, particularly those associated with temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders (TMD) are severely debilitating and affect approximately 12% of the population. Identifying peripheral nociceptive mechanisms underlying mechanical hyperalgesia, a prominent feature of persistent muscle pain, could contribute to the development of new treatment strategies for the management of TMD and other muscle pain conditions. This study provides evidence of functional interactions between ligand-gated channels, P2X3 and TRPV1/TRPA1, in trigeminal sensory neurons, and proposes that these interactions underlie the development of mechanical hyperalgesia. In the masseter muscle, direct P2X3 activation, via the selective agonist αβmeATP, induced a dose- and time-dependent hyperalgesia. Importantly, the αβmeATP-induced hyperalgesia was prevented by pretreatment of the muscle with a TRPV1 antagonist, AMG9810, or the TRPA1 antagonist, AP18. P2X3 was co-expressed with both TRPV1 and TRPA1 in masseter muscle afferents confirming the possibility for intracellular interactions. Moreover, in a subpopulation of P2X3 /TRPV1 positive neurons, capsaicin-induced Ca2+ transients were significantly potentiated following P2X3 activation. Inhibition of Ca2+-dependent kinases, PKC and CaMKII, prevented P2X3-mechanical hyperalgesia whereas blockade of Ca2+-independent PKA did not. Finally, activation of P2X3 induced phosphorylation of serine, but not threonine, residues in TRPV1 in trigeminal sensory neurons. Significant phosphorylation was observed at 15 minutes, the time point at which behavioral hyperalgesia was prominent. Similar data were obtained regarding another nonselective cation channel, the NMDA receptor (NMDAR). Our data propose P2X3 and NMDARs interact with TRPV1 in a facilitatory manner, which could contribute to the peripheral sensitization underlying masseter hyperalgesia. This study offers novel mechanisms by which individual pro-nociceptive ligand

  9. Mechanical properties of a collagen fibril under simulated degradation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malaspina, David C; Szleifer, Igal; Dhaher, Yasin

    2017-11-01

    Collagen fibrils are a very important component in most of the connective tissue in humans. An important process associated with several physiological and pathological states is the degradation of collagen. Collagen degradation is usually mediated by enzymatic and non-enzymatic processes. In this work we use molecular dynamics simulations to study the influence of simulated degradation on the mechanical properties of the collagen fibril. We applied tensile stress to the collagen fiber at different stages of degradation. We compared the difference in the fibril mechanical priorities due the removal of enzymatic crosslink, surface degradation and volumetric degradation. As anticipated, our results indicated that, regardless of the degradation scenario, fibril mechanical properties is reduced. The type of degradation mechanism (crosslink, surface or volumetric) expressed differential effect on the change in the fibril stiffness. Our simulation results showed dramatic change in the fibril stiffness with a small amount of degradation. This suggests that the hierarchical structure of the fibril is a key component for the toughness and is very sensitive to changes in the organization of the fibril. The overall results are intended to provide a theoretical framework for the understanding the mechanical behavior of collagen fibrils under degradation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Temporomandibular disorders and painful comorbidities: clinical association and underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Yuri Martins; Conti, Paulo César Rodrigues; de Faria, Flavio Augusto Cardoso; Bonjardim, Leonardo Rigoldi

    2017-03-01

    The association between temporomandibular disorders (TMDs) and headaches, cervical spine dysfunction, and fibromyalgia is not artefactual. The aim of this review is to describe the comorbid relationship between TMD and these three major painful conditions and to discuss the clinical implications and the underlying pain mechanisms involved in these relationships. Common neuronal pathways and central sensitization processes are acknowledged as the main factors for the association between TMD and primary headaches, although the establishment of cause-effect mechanisms requires further clarification and characterization. The biomechanical aspects are not the main factors involved in the comorbid relationship between TMD and cervical spine dysfunction, which can be better explained by the neuronal convergence of the trigeminal and cervical spine sensory pathways as well as by central sensitization processes. The association between TMD and fibromyalgia also has supporting evidence in the literature, and the proposed main mechanism underlying this relationship is the impairment of the descending pain inhibitory system. In this particular scenario, a cause-effect relationship is more likely to occur in one direction, that is, fibromyalgia as a risk factor for TMD. Therefore, clinical awareness of the association between TMD and painful comorbidities and the support of multidisciplinary approaches are required to recognize these related conditions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Failure Mechanisms of Brittle Rocks under Uniaxial Compression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liu Taoying

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The behaviour of a rock mass is determined not only by the properties of the rock matrix, but mostly by the presence and properties of discontinuities or fractures within the mass. The compression test on rock-like specimens with two prefabricated transfixion fissures, made by pulling out the embedded metal inserts in the pre-cured period was carried out on the servo control uniaxial loading tester. The influence of the geometry of pre-existing cracks on the cracking processes was analysed with reference to the experimental observation of crack initiation and propagation from pre-existing flaws. Based on the rock fracture mechanics and the stress-strain curves, the evolution failure mechanism of the fissure body was also analyzed on the basis of exploring the law of the compression-shear crack initiation, wing crack growth and rock bridge connection. Meanwhile, damage fracture mechanical models of a compression-shear rock mass are established when the rock bridge axial transfixion failure, tension-shear combined failure, or wing crack shear connection failure occurs on the specimen under axial compression. This research was of significance in studying the failure mechanism of fractured rock mass.

  12. The mechanism underlying fast germination of tomato cultivar LA2711.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Rongchao; Chu, Zhuannan; Zhang, Haijun; Li, Ying; Wang, Jinfang; Li, Dianbo; Weeda, Sarah; Ren, Shuxin; Ouyang, Bo; Guo, Yang-Dong

    2015-09-01

    Seed germination is important for early plant morphogenesis as well as abiotic stress tolerance, and is mainly controlled by the phytohormones abscisic acid (ABA) and gibberellic acid (GA). Our previous studies identified a salt-tolerant tomato cultivar, LA2711, which is also a fast-germinating genotype, compared to its salt-sensitive counterpart, ZS-5. In an effort to further clarify the mechanism underlying this phenomenon, we compared the dynamic levels of ABA and GA4, the transcript abundance of genes involved in their biosynthesis and catabolism as well as signal transduction between the two cultivars. In addition, we tested seed germination sensitivity to ABA and GAs. Our results revealed that insensitivity of seed germination to exogenous ABA and low ABA content in seeds are the physiological mechanisms conferring faster germination rates of LA2711 seeds. SlCYP707A2, which encodes an ABA catabolic enzyme, may play a decisive role in the fast germination rate of LA2711, as it showed a significantly higher level of expression in LA2711 than ZS-5 at most time points tested during germination. The current results will enable us to gain insight into the mechanism(s) regarding seed germination of tomato and the role of fast germination in stress tolerance. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Mechanisms underlying HIV-1 Vpu-mediated viral egress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas eRoy

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Viruses such as lentiviruses that are responsible for long lasting infections, have to evade several level of cellular immune mechanisms to persist and efficiently disseminate in the host. Over the past decades, many evidences have emerged regarding the major role of accessory proteins of primate lentiviruses (Human (HIV and simian immunodeficiency viruses (SIV in viral evasion from the host immune defense. This short review will provide an overview of the mechanism whereby the accessory protein Vpu contributes to this escape. Vpu is a multifunctional protein that was shown to contribute to viral egress by down-regulating several mediators of the immune system such as CD4, CD1d, NTB-A and the restriction factor BST2. The mechanisms underlying its activity are not fully characterized but rely on its ability to interfere with the host machinery regulating proteins turnover and vesicular trafficking. This review will focus on our current understanding of the mechanisms whereby Vpu down-regulates CD4 and BST2 expression level to favour viral egress.

  14. Mechanical Design of AM Fabricated Prismatic Rods under Torsion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manzhirov Alexander V.

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available We study the stress-strain state of viscoelastic prismatic rods fabricated or repaired by additive manufacturing technologies under torsion. An adequate description of the processes involved is given by methods of a new scientific field, mechanics of growing solids. Three main stages of the deformation process (before the beginning of growth, in the course of growth, and after the termination of growth are studied. Two versions of statement of two problems are given: (i given the torque, find the stresses, displacements, and torsion; (ii given the torsion, find the stresses, displacements, and torque. Solution methods using techniques of complex analysis are presented. The results can be used in mechanical and instrument engineering.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Min; Li, Song; Le, Weidong

    2017-10-25

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

  16. Age differences in the underlying mechanisms of stereotype threat effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popham, Lauren E; Hess, Thomas M

    2015-03-01

    The goals of the present study were to (a) examine whether age differences exist in the mechanisms underlying stereotype threat effects on cognitive performance and (b) examine whether emotion regulation abilities may buffer against threat effects on performance. Older and younger adults were exposed to positive or negative age-relevant stereotypes, allowing us to examine the impact of threat on regulatory focus and working memory. Self-reported emotion regulation measures were completed prior to the session. Older adults' performance under threat suggested a prevention-focused approach to the task, indexed by increased accuracy and reduced speed. The same pattern was observed in younger adults, but the effects were not as strong. Age differences emerged when examining the availability of working memory resources under threat, with young adults showing decrements, whereas older adults did not. Emotion regulation abilities moderated threat effects in young adults but not in older adults. The results provide support for the notion that stereotype threat may lead to underperformance through somewhat different pathways in older and younger adults. Future research should further examine whether the underlying reason for this age difference is rooted in age-related improvements in emotion regulation. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. A Simple Test for Causality in Volatility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Lin Chang

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available An early development in testing for causality (technically, Granger non-causality in the conditional variance (or volatility associated with financial returns was the portmanteau statistic for non-causality in the variance of Cheng and Ng (1996. A subsequent development was the Lagrange Multiplier (LM test of non-causality in the conditional variance by Hafner and Herwartz (2006, who provided simulation results to show that their LM test was more powerful than the portmanteau statistic for sample sizes of 1000 and 4000 observations. While the LM test for causality proposed by Hafner and Herwartz (2006 is an interesting and useful development, it is nonetheless arbitrary. In particular, the specification on which the LM test is based does not rely on an underlying stochastic process, so the alternative hypothesis is also arbitrary, which can affect the power of the test. The purpose of the paper is to derive a simple test for causality in volatility that provides regularity conditions arising from the underlying stochastic process, namely a random coefficient autoregressive process, and a test for which the (quasi- maximum likelihood estimates have valid asymptotic properties under the null hypothesis of non-causality. The simple test is intuitively appealing as it is based on an underlying stochastic process, is sympathetic to Granger’s (1969, 1988 notion of time series predictability, is easy to implement, and has a regularity condition that is not available in the LM test.

  18. Causality in Classical Physics

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Classical physics encompasses the study of phys- ical phenomena which range from local (a point) to nonlocal (a region) in space and/or time. We discuss the concept of spatial and temporal non- locality. However, one of the likely implications pertaining to nonlocality is non-causality. We study causality in the context of ...

  19. Causality in Classical Electrodynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savage, Craig

    2012-01-01

    Causality in electrodynamics is a subject of some confusion, especially regarding the application of Faraday's law and the Ampere-Maxwell law. This has led to the suggestion that we should not teach students that electric and magnetic fields can cause each other, but rather focus on charges and currents as the causal agents. In this paper I argue…

  20. Electrochemical mechanism of tin membrane electrodeposition under ultrasonic waves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nan, Tianxiang; Yang, Jianguang; Chen, Bing

    2018-04-01

    Tin was electrodeposited from chloride solutions using a membrane cell under ultrasonic waves. Cyclic voltammetry (CV), linear sweep voltammetry (LSV), chronoamperometry (CHR), and chronopotentiometry were applied to investigate the electrochemical mechanism of tin electrodeposition under ultrasonic field. Chronoamperometry curves showed that the initial process of tin electrodeposition followed the diffusion controlled three-dimensional nucleation and grain growth mechanism. The analysis of the cyclic voltammetry and linear sweep voltammetry diagrams showed that the application of ultrasound can change the tin membrane electro-deposition reaction from diffusion to electrochemical control, and the optimum parameters for tin electrodeposition were H + concentration 3.5 mol·L -1 , temperature 35 °C and ultrasonic power 100 W. The coupling ultrasonic field played a role in refining the grain in this process. The growth of tin crystals showed no orientation preferential, and the tin deposition showed a tendency to form a regular network structure after ultrasonic coupling. While in the absence of ultrasonic coupling, the growth of tin crystals has a high preferential orientation, and the tin deposition showed a tendency to form tin whiskers. Ultrasonic coupling was more favorable for obtaining a more compact and smoother cathode tin layer. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Mechanisms Underlying the Antidepressant Response and Treatment Resistance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marjorie Rose Levinstein

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Depression is a complex and heterogeneous disorder affecting millions of Americans. There are several different medications and other treatments that are available and effective for many patients with depression. However, a substantial percentage of patients fail to achieve remission with these currently available interventions, and relapse rates are high. Therefore, it is necessary to determine both the mechanisms underlying the antidepressant response and the differences between responders and non-responders to treatment. Delineation of these mechanisms largely relies on experiments that utilize animal models. Therefore, this review provides an overview of the various mouse models that are currently used to assess the antidepressant response, such as chronic mild stress, social defeat, and chronic corticosterone. We discuss how these mouse models can be used to advance our understanding of the differences between responders and non-responders to antidepressant treatment. We also provide an overview of experimental treatment modalities that are used for treatment-resistant depression, such as deep brain stimulation and ketamine administration. We will then review the various genetic polymorphisms and transgenic mice that display resistance to antidepressant treatment. Finally, we synthesize the published data to describe a potential neural circuit underlying the antidepressant response and treatment resistance.

  2. Causality in demand

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Max; Jensen, Frank; Setälä, Jari

    2011-01-01

    to fish demand. On the German market for farmed trout and substitutes, it is found that supply sources, i.e. aquaculture and fishery, are not the only determinant of causality. Storing, tightness of management and aggregation level of integrated markets might also be important. The methodological......This article focuses on causality in demand. A methodology where causality is imposed and tested within an empirical co-integrated demand model, not prespecified, is suggested. The methodology allows different causality of different products within the same demand system. The methodology is applied...... implication is that more explicit focus on causality in demand analyses provides improved information. The results suggest that frozen trout forms part of a large European whitefish market, where prices of fresh trout are formed on a relatively separate market. Redfish is a substitute on both markets...

  3. Non-Causal Computation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ämin Baumeler

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Computation models such as circuits describe sequences of computation steps that are carried out one after the other. In other words, algorithm design is traditionally subject to the restriction imposed by a fixed causal order. We address a novel computing paradigm beyond quantum computing, replacing this assumption by mere logical consistency: We study non-causal circuits, where a fixed time structure within a gate is locally assumed whilst the global causal structure between the gates is dropped. We present examples of logically consistent non-causal circuits outperforming all causal ones; they imply that suppressing loops entirely is more restrictive than just avoiding the contradictions they can give rise to. That fact is already known for correlations as well as for communication, and we here extend it to computation.

  4. Autophagy as a Possible Underlying Mechanism of Nanomaterial Toxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Cohignac

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The rapid development of nanotechnologies is raising safety concerns because of the potential effects of engineered nanomaterials on human health, particularly at the respiratory level. Since the last decades, many in vivo studies have been interested in the pulmonary effects of different classes of nanomaterials. It has been shown that some of them can induce toxic effects, essentially depending on their physico-chemical characteristics, but other studies did not identify such effects. Inflammation and oxidative stress are currently the two main mechanisms described to explain the observed toxicity. However, the exact underlying mechanism(s still remain(s unknown and autophagy could represent an interesting candidate. Autophagy is a physiological process in which cytoplasmic components are digested via a lysosomal pathway. It has been shown that autophagy is involved in the pathogenesis and the progression of human diseases, and is able to modulate the oxidative stress and pro-inflammatory responses. A growing amount of literature suggests that a link between nanomaterial toxicity and autophagy impairment could exist. In this review, we will first summarize what is known about the respiratory effects of nanomaterials and we will then discuss the possible involvement of autophagy in this toxicity. This review should help understand why autophagy impairment could be taken as a promising candidate to fully understand nanomaterials toxicity.

  5. Effects of manual hyperinflation in preterm newborns under mechanical ventilation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viana, Camila Chaves; Nicolau, Carla Marques; Juliani, Regina Celia Turola Passos; Carvalho, Werther Brunow de; Krebs, Vera Lucia Jornada

    2016-09-01

    To assess the effects of manual hyperinflation, performed with a manual resuscitator with and without the positive end-expiratory pressure valve, on the respiratory function of preterm newborns under mechanical ventilation. Cross-sectional study of hemodynamically stable preterm newborns with gestational age of less than 32 weeks, under mechanical ventilation and dependent on it at 28 days of life. Manual hyperinflation was applied randomly, alternating the use or not of the positive end-expiratory pressure valve, followed by tracheal aspiration for ending the maneuver. For nominal data, the two-tailed Wilcoxon test was applied at the 5% significance level and 80% power. Twenty-eight preterm newborns, with an average birth weight of 1,005.71 ± 372.16g, an average gestational age of 28.90 ± 1.79 weeks, an average corrected age of 33.26 ± 1.78 weeks, and an average mechanical ventilation time of 29.5 (15 - 53) days, were studied. Increases in inspiratory and expiratory volumes occurred between time-points A5 (before the maneuver) and C1 (immediately after tracheal aspiration) in both the maneuver with the valve (p = 0.001 and p = 0.009) and without the valve (p = 0.026 and p = 0.001), respectively. There was also an increase in expiratory resistance between time-points A5 and C1 (p = 0.044). Lung volumes increased when performing the maneuver with and without the valve, with a significant difference in the first minute after aspiration. There was a significant difference in expiratory resistance between the time-points A5 (before the maneuver) and C1 (immediately after tracheal aspiration) in the first minute after aspiration within each maneuver.

  6. Exploration of mechanisms underlying the strain-rate-dependent mechanical property of single chondrocytes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nguyen, Trung Dung; Gu, YuanTong, E-mail: yuantong.gu@qut.edu.au [School of Chemistry, Physics and Mechanical Engineering, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Queensland (Australia)

    2014-05-05

    Based on the characterization by Atomic Force Microscopy, we report that the mechanical property of single chondrocytes has dependency on the strain-rates. By comparing the mechanical deformation responses and the Young's moduli of living and fixed chondrocytes at four different strain-rates, we explore the deformation mechanisms underlying this dependency property. We found that the strain-rate-dependent mechanical property of living cells is governed by both of the cellular cytoskeleton and the intracellular fluid when the fixed chondrocytes are mainly governed by their intracellular fluid, which is called the consolidation-dependent deformation behavior. Finally, we report that the porohyperelastic constitutive material model which can capture the consolidation-dependent behavior of both living and fixed chondrocytes is a potential candidature to study living cell biomechanics.

  7. Heterogeneous Causal Effects and Sample Selection Bias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Breen, Richard; Choi, Seongsoo; Holm, Anders

    2015-01-01

    The role of education in the process of socioeconomic attainment is a topic of long standing interest to sociologists and economists. Recently there has been growing interest not only in estimating the average causal effect of education on outcomes such as earnings, but also in estimating how...... causal effects might vary over individuals or groups. In this paper we point out one of the under-appreciated hazards of seeking to estimate heterogeneous causal effects: conventional selection bias (that is, selection on baseline differences) can easily be mistaken for heterogeneity of causal effects....... This might lead us to find heterogeneous effects when the true effect is homogenous, or to wrongly estimate not only the magnitude but also the sign of heterogeneous effects. We apply a test for the robustness of heterogeneous causal effects in the face of varying degrees and patterns of selection bias...

  8. Causality and headache triggers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Dana P.; Smitherman, Todd A.; Martin, Vincent T.; Penzien, Donald B.; Houle, Timothy T.

    2013-01-01

    Objective The objective of this study was to explore the conditions necessary to assign causal status to headache triggers. Background The term “headache trigger” is commonly used to label any stimulus that is assumed to cause headaches. However, the assumptions required for determining if a given stimulus in fact has a causal-type relationship in eliciting headaches have not been explicated. Methods A synthesis and application of Rubin’s Causal Model is applied to the context of headache causes. From this application the conditions necessary to infer that one event (trigger) causes another (headache) are outlined using basic assumptions and examples from relevant literature. Results Although many conditions must be satisfied for a causal attribution, three basic assumptions are identified for determining causality in headache triggers: 1) constancy of the sufferer; 2) constancy of the trigger effect; and 3) constancy of the trigger presentation. A valid evaluation of a potential trigger’s effect can only be undertaken once these three basic assumptions are satisfied during formal or informal studies of headache triggers. Conclusions Evaluating these assumptions is extremely difficult or infeasible in clinical practice, and satisfying them during natural experimentation is unlikely. Researchers, practitioners, and headache sufferers are encouraged to avoid natural experimentation to determine the causal effects of headache triggers. Instead, formal experimental designs or retrospective diary studies using advanced statistical modeling techniques provide the best approaches to satisfy the required assumptions and inform causal statements about headache triggers. PMID:23534872

  9. Contours of a causal feedback mechanism between adaptive personality and psychosocial function in patients with personality disorders: a secondary analysis from a randomized clinical trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klungsøyr, Ole; Antonsen, Bjørnar; Wilberg, Theresa

    2017-06-05

    Patients with personality disorders commonly exhibit impairment in psychosocial function that persists over time even with diagnostic remission. Further causal knowledge may help to identify and assess factors with a potential to alleviate this impairment. Psychosocial function is associated with personality functioning which describes personality disorder severity in DSM-5 (section III) and which can reportedly be improved by therapy. The reciprocal association between personality functioning and psychosocial function was assessed, in 113 patients with different personality disorders, in a secondary longitudinal analysis of data from a randomized clinical trial, over six years. Personality functioning was represented by three domains of the Severity Indices of Personality Problems: Relational Capacity, Identity Integration, and Self-control. Psychosocial function was measured by Global Assessment of Functioning. The marginal structural model was used for estimation of causal effects of the three personality functioning domains on psychosocial function, and vice versa. The attractiveness of this model lies in the ability to assess an effect of a time - varying exposure on an outcome, while adjusting for time - varying confounding. Strong causal effects were found. A hypothetical intervention to increase Relational Capacity by one standard deviation, both at one and two time-points prior to assessment of psychosocial function, would increase psychosocial function by 3.5 standard deviations (95% CI: 2.0, 4.96). Significant effects of Identity Integration and Self-control on psychosocial function, and from psychosocial function on all three domains of personality functioning, although weaker, were also found. This study indicates that persistent impairment in psychosocial function can be addressed through a causal pathway of personality functioning, with interventions of at least 18 months duration.

  10. The mechanisms underlying fructose-induced hypertension: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Alice Victoria; Kiat, Hosen

    2015-01-01

    We are currently in the midst of an epidemic of metabolic disorders, which may, in part, be explained by excess fructose intake. This theory is supported by epidemiological observations as well as experimental studies in animals and humans. Rising consumption of fructose has been matched with growing rates of hypertension, leading to concern from public health experts. At this stage, the mechanisms underlying fructose-induced hypertension have not been fully characterized and the bulk of our knowledge is derived from animal models. Animal studies have shown that high-fructose diets up-regulate sodium and chloride transporters, resulting in a state of salt overload that increases blood pressure. Excess fructose has also been found to activate vasoconstrictors, inactivate vasodilators, and over-stimulate the sympathetic nervous system. Further work is required to determine the relevance of these findings to humans and to establish the level at which dietary fructose increases the risk of developing hypertension PMID:25715094

  11. Degradation Mechanisms of Transparent Polyurethane Interlayer under UV Irradiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    OU Yingchun

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available According to the ageing problem of laminated transparency, the trasparent polyurethane film used as interlayer had been irradiated by fluorescent ultraviolet lamp for 0 h, 200 h, 300 h, and 500 h respectively. With the aid of ultraviolet/visible spectrophotometer, FTIR and SEM etc., the color, structure and morphology of the materials were studied. SEM shows that when the irradiation time is increased to 500 h, the film surface cracks. The UV degradation mechanisms are that -CH2- of the position connecting the O and N from hard segment and the soft segment are easy to oxidize and produce hydrogen peroxide under UV and oxygen, which is furtherly oxidized to CO, and some part of the C-O and C-N bonds is cracked through β scission, and then the materials are fractured.

  12. Nonlinear mechanical response of supercooled melts under applied forces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cárdenas, Heliana; Frahsa, Fabian; Fritschi, Sebastian; Nicolas, Alexandre; Papenkort, Simon; Voigtmann, Thomas; Fuchs, Matthias

    2017-08-01

    We review recent progress on a microscopic theoretical approach to describe the nonlinear response of glass-forming colloidal dispersions under strong external forcing leading to homogeneous and inhomogeneous flow. Using mode-coupling theory (MCT), constitutive equations for the rheology of viscoelastic shear-thinning fluids are obtained. These are, in suitably simplified form, employed in continuum fluid dynamics, solved by a hybrid-Lattice Boltzmann (LB) algorithm that was developed to deal with long-lasting memory effects. The combined microscopic theoretical and mesoscopic numerical approach captures a number of phenomena far from equilibrium, including the yielding of metastable states, process-dependent mechanical properties, and inhomogeneous pressure-driven channel flow.

  13. Simulated airplane headache: a proxy towards identification of underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bui, Sebastian Bao Dinh; Petersen, Torben; Poulsen, Jeppe Nørgaard; Gazerani, Parisa

    2017-12-01

    Airplane Headache (AH) occurs during flights and often appears as an intense, short lasting headache during take-off or landing. Reports are limited on pathological mechanisms underlying the occurrence of this headache. Proper diagnosis and treatments would benefit from identification of potential pathways involved in AH pathogenesis. This study aimed at providing a simulated airplane headache condition as a proxy towards identification of its underlying mechanisms. Fourteen participants including 7 volunteers suffering from AH and 7 healthy matched controls were recruited after meeting the diagnostic and safety criteria based on an approved study protocol. Simulation of AH was achieved by entering a pressure chamber with similar characteristics of an airplane flight. Selected potential biomarkers including salivary prostaglandin E 2 (PGE 2 ), cortisol, facial thermo-images, blood pressure, pulse, and saturation pulse oxygen (SPO) were defined and values were collected before, during and after flight simulation in the pressure chamber. Salivary samples were analyzed with ELISA techniques, while data analysis and statistical tests were handled with SPSS version 22.0. All participants in the AH-group experienced a headache attack similar to AH experience during flight. The non-AH-group did not experience any headaches. Our data showed that the values for PGE 2 , cortisol and SPO were significantly different in the AH-group in comparison with the non-AH-group during the flight simulation in the pressure chamber. The pressure chamber proved useful not only to provoke AH-like attack but also to study potential biomarkers for AH in this study. PGE 2 , and cortisol levels together with SPO presented dysregulation during the simulated AH-attack in affected individuals compared with healthy controls. Based on these findings we propose to use pressure chamber as a model to induce AH, and thus assess new potential biomarkers for AH in future studies.

  14. POSSIBLE MECHANISMS UNDERLYING THE THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS OF TRANSCRANIAL MAGNETIC STIMULATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander eChervyakov

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS is an effective method used to diagnose and treat many neurological disorders. Although repetitive TMS (rTMS has been used to treat a variety of serious pathological conditions including stroke, depression, Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, pain, and migraines, the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying the effects of long-term TMS remain unclear. In the present review, the effects of rTMS on neurotransmitters and synaptic plasticity are described, including the classic interpretations of TMS effects on synaptic plasticity via long-term potentiation (LTP and long-term depression (LTD. We also discuss the effects of rTMS on the genetic apparatus of neurons, glial cells and the prevention of neuronal death. The neurotrophic effects of rTMS on dendritic growth and sprouting and neurotrophic factors are described, including change in brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF concentration under the influence of rTMS. Also, non-classical effects of TMS related to biophysical effects of magnetic fields are described, including the quantum effects, the magnetic spin effects, genetic magnetoreception, the macromolecular effects of TMS, and the electromagnetic theory of consciousness. Finally, we discuss possible interpretations of TMS effects according to dynamical systems theory. Evidence suggests that a rTMS-induced magnetic field should be considered a separate physical factor that can be impactful at the subatomic level and that rTMS is capable of significantly altering the reactivity of molecules (radicals. It is thought that these factors underlie the therapeutic benefits of therapy with TMS. Future research on these mechanisms will be instrumental to the development of more powerful and reliable TMS treatment protocols.

  15. Nonlinear Mechanics of MEMS Rectangular Microplates under Electrostatic Actuation

    KAUST Repository

    Saghir, Shahid

    2016-12-01

    The first objective of the dissertation is to develop a suitable reduced order model capable of investigating the nonlinear mechanical behavior of von-Karman plates under electrostatic actuation. The second objective is to investigate the nonlinear static and dynamic behavior of rectangular microplates under small and large actuating forces. In the first part, we present and compare various approaches to develop reduced order models for the nonlinear von-Karman rectangular microplates actuated by nonlinear electrostatic forces. The reduced-order models aim to investigate the static and dynamic behavior of the plate under small and large actuation forces. A fully clamped microplate is considered. Different types of basis functions are used in conjunction with the Galerkin method to discretize the governing equations. First we investigate the convergence with the number of modes retained in the model. Then for validation purpose, a comparison of the static results is made with the results calculated by a nonlinear finite element model. The linear eigenvalue problem for the plate under the electrostatic force is solved for a wide range of voltages up to pull-in. In the second part, we present an investigation of the static and dynamic behavior of a fully clamped microplate. We investigate the effect of different non-dimensional design parameters on the static response. The forced-vibration response of the plate is then investigated when the plate is excited by a harmonic AC load superimposed to a DC load. The dynamic behavior is examined near the primary and secondary (superharmonic and subharmonic) resonances. The microplate shows a strong hardening behavior due to the cubic nonlinearity of midplane stretching. However, the behavior switches to softening as the DC load is increased. Next, near-square plates are studied to understand the effect of geometric imperfections of microplates. In the final part of the dissertation, we investigate the mechanical behavior of

  16. Mechanisms underlying the social enhancement of vocal learning in songbirds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yining; Matheson, Laura E; Sakata, Jon T

    2016-06-14

    Social processes profoundly influence speech and language acquisition. Despite the importance of social influences, little is known about how social interactions modulate vocal learning. Like humans, songbirds learn their vocalizations during development, and they provide an excellent opportunity to reveal mechanisms of social influences on vocal learning. Using yoked experimental designs, we demonstrate that social interactions with adult tutors for as little as 1 d significantly enhanced vocal learning. Social influences on attention to song seemed central to the social enhancement of learning because socially tutored birds were more attentive to the tutor's songs than passively tutored birds, and because variation in attentiveness and in the social modulation of attention significantly predicted variation in vocal learning. Attention to song was influenced by both the nature and amount of tutor song: Pupils paid more attention to songs that tutors directed at them and to tutors that produced fewer songs. Tutors altered their song structure when directing songs at pupils in a manner that resembled how humans alter their vocalizations when speaking to infants, that was distinct from how tutors changed their songs when singing to females, and that could influence attention and learning. Furthermore, social interactions that rapidly enhanced learning increased the activity of noradrenergic and dopaminergic midbrain neurons. These data highlight striking parallels between humans and songbirds in the social modulation of vocal learning and suggest that social influences on attention and midbrain circuitry could represent shared mechanisms underlying the social modulation of vocal learning.

  17. Neurodevelopmental Disorders and Environmental Toxicants: Epigenetics as an Underlying Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nguyen Quoc Vuong Tran

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The increasing prevalence of neurodevelopmental disorders, especially autism spectrum disorders (ASD and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD, calls for more research into the identification of etiologic and risk factors. The Developmental Origin of Health and Disease (DOHaD hypothesizes that the environment during fetal and childhood development affects the risk for many chronic diseases in later stages of life, including neurodevelopmental disorders. Epigenetics, a term describing mechanisms that cause changes in the chromosome state without affecting DNA sequences, is suggested to be the underlying mechanism, according to the DOHaD hypothesis. Moreover, many neurodevelopmental disorders are also related to epigenetic abnormalities. Experimental and epidemiological studies suggest that exposure to prenatal environmental toxicants is associated with neurodevelopmental disorders. In addition, there is also evidence that environmental toxicants can result in epigenetic alterations, notably DNA methylation. In this review, we first focus on the relationship between neurodevelopmental disorders and environmental toxicants, in particular maternal smoking, plastic-derived chemicals (bisphenol A and phthalates, persistent organic pollutants, and heavy metals. We then review studies showing the epigenetic effects of those environmental factors in humans that may affect normal neurodevelopment.

  18. Thermal stability of nafion membranes under mechanical stress

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Quintilii, M.; Struis, R. [Paul Scherrer Inst. (PSI), Villigen (Switzerland)

    1997-06-01

    The feasibility of adequately modified fluoro-ionomer membranes (NAFION{sup R}) is demonstrated for the selective separation of methanol synthesis products from the raw reactor gas at temperatures around 200{sup o}C. For an economically relevant application of this concept on a technical scale the Nafion membranes should be thin ({approx_equal}10 {mu}m) and thermally stable over a long period of time (1-2 years). In cooperation with industry (Methanol Casale SA, Lugano (CH)), we test the thermal stability of Nafion hollow fibers and supported Nafion thin sheet membranes at temperatures between 160 and 200{sup o}C under mechanical stress by applying a gas pressure difference over the membrane surface ({Delta}P{<=} 40 bar). Tests with the hollow fibers revealed that Nafion has visco-elastic properties. Tests with 50 {mu}m thin Nafion sheets supported by a porous metal carrier at 200{sup o}C and {Delta}P=39 bar showed no mechanical defects over a period of 92 days. (author) 5 figs., 4 refs.

  19. Using Drosophila to discover mechanisms underlying type 2 diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ronald W. Alfa

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Mechanisms of glucose homeostasis are remarkably well conserved between the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and mammals. From the initial characterization of insulin signaling in the fly came the identification of downstream metabolic pathways for nutrient storage and utilization. Defects in these pathways lead to phenotypes that are analogous to diabetic states in mammals. These discoveries have stimulated interest in leveraging the fly to better understand the genetics of type 2 diabetes mellitus in humans. Type 2 diabetes results from insulin insufficiency in the context of ongoing insulin resistance. Although genetic susceptibility is thought to govern the propensity of individuals to develop type 2 diabetes mellitus under appropriate environmental conditions, many of the human genes associated with the disease in genome-wide association studies have not been functionally studied. Recent advances in the phenotyping of metabolic defects have positioned Drosophila as an excellent model for the functional characterization of large numbers of genes associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Here, we examine results from studies modeling metabolic disease in the fruit fly and compare findings to proposed mechanisms for diabetic phenotypes in mammals. We provide a systematic framework for assessing the contribution of gene candidates to insulin-secretion or insulin-resistance pathways relevant to diabetes pathogenesis.

  20. Mechanisms underlying temperature extremes in Iberia: a Lagrangian perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João A. Santos

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The mechanisms underlying the occurrence of temperature extremes in Iberia are analysed considering a Lagrangian perspective of the atmospheric flow, using 6-hourly ERA-Interim reanalysis data for the years 1979–2012. Daily 2-m minimum temperatures below the 1st percentile and 2-m maximum temperatures above the 99th percentile at each grid point over Iberia are selected separately for winter and summer. Four categories of extremes are analysed using 10-d backward trajectories initialized at the extreme temperature grid points close to the surface: winter cold (WCE and warm extremes (WWE, and summer cold (SCE and warm extremes (SWE. Air masses leading to temperature extremes are first transported from the North Atlantic towards Europe for all categories. While there is a clear relation to large-scale circulation patterns in winter, the Iberian thermal low is important in summer. Along the trajectories, air mass characteristics are significantly modified through adiabatic warming (air parcel descent, upper-air radiative cooling and near-surface warming (surface heat fluxes and radiation. High residence times over continental areas, such as over northern-central Europe for WCE and, to a lesser extent, over Iberia for SWE, significantly enhance these air mass modifications. Near-surface diabatic warming is particularly striking for SWE. WCE and SWE are responsible for the most extreme conditions in a given year. For WWE and SCE, strong temperature advection associated with important meridional air mass transports are the main driving mechanisms, accompanied by comparatively minor changes in the air mass properties. These results permit a better understanding of mechanisms leading to temperature extremes in Iberia.

  1. Different neurophysiological mechanisms underlying word and rule extraction from speech.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth De Diego Balaguer

    Full Text Available The initial process of identifying words from spoken language and the detection of more subtle regularities underlying their structure are mandatory processes for language acquisition. Little is known about the cognitive mechanisms that allow us to extract these two types of information and their specific time-course of acquisition following initial contact with a new language. We report time-related electrophysiological changes that occurred while participants learned an artificial language. These changes strongly correlated with the discovery of the structural rules embedded in the words. These changes were clearly different from those related to word learning and occurred during the first minutes of exposition. There is a functional distinction in the nature of the electrophysiological signals during acquisition: an increase in negativity (N400 in the central electrodes is related to word-learning and development of a frontal positivity (P2 is related to rule-learning. In addition, the results of an online implicit and a post-learning test indicate that, once the rules of the language have been acquired, new words following the rule are processed as words of the language. By contrast, new words violating the rule induce syntax-related electrophysiological responses when inserted online in the stream (an early frontal negativity followed by a late posterior positivity and clear lexical effects when presented in isolation (N400 modulation. The present study provides direct evidence suggesting that the mechanisms to extract words and structural dependencies from continuous speech are functionally segregated. When these mechanisms are engaged, the electrophysiological marker associated with rule-learning appears very quickly, during the earliest phases of exposition to a new language.

  2. Understanding and imitating unfamiliar actions: distinct underlying mechanisms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joana C Carmo

    Full Text Available The human "mirror neuron system" has been proposed to be the neural substrate that underlies understanding and, possibly, imitating actions. However, since the brain activity with mirror properties seems insufficient to provide a good description for imitation of actions outside one's own repertoire, the existence of supplementary processes has been proposed. Moreover, it is unclear whether action observation requires the same neural mechanisms as the explicit access to their meaning. The aim of this study was two-fold as we investigated whether action observation requires different processes depending on 1 whether the ultimate goal is to imitate or understand the presented actions and 2 whether the to-be-imitated actions are familiar or unfamiliar to the subject. Participants were presented with both meaningful familiar actions and meaningless unfamiliar actions that they had to either imitate or discriminate later. Event-related Potentials were used as differences in brain activity could have been masked by the use of other techniques with lower temporal resolution. In the imitation task, a sustained left frontal negativity was more pronounced for meaningless actions than for meaningful ones, starting from an early time-window. Conversely, observing unfamiliar versus familiar actions with the intention of discriminating them led to marked differences over right centro-posterior scalp regions, in both middle and latest time-windows. These findings suggest that action imitation and action understanding may be sustained by dissociable mechanisms: while imitation of unfamiliar actions activates left frontal processes, that are likely to be related to learning mechanisms, action understanding involves dedicated operations which probably require right posterior regions, consistent with their involvement in social interactions.

  3. Mechanical properties and failure mechanisms of graphene under a central load.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shuaiwei; Yang, Baocheng; Zhang, Shouren; Yuan, Jinyun; Si, Yubing; Chen, Houyang

    2014-09-15

    By employing molecular dynamics simulations, the evolution of deformation of a monolayer graphene sheet under a central transverse loading are investigated. Dependence of mechanical responses on the symmetry (shape) of the loading domain, on the size of the graphene sheet, and on temperature, is determined. It is found that the symmetry of the loading domain plays a central role in fracture strength and strain. By increasing the size of the graphene sheet or increasing temperature, the tensile strength and fracture strain decrease. The results have demonstrated that the breaking force and breaking displacement are sensitive to both temperature and the symmetry of the loading domain. In addition, we find that the intrinsic strength of graphene under a central load is much smaller than that of graphene under a uniaxial load. By examining the deformation processes, two failure mechanisms are identified namely, brittle bond breaking and plastic relaxation. In the second mechanism, the Stone-Wales transformation occurs. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  4. Microcracking in composite laminates under thermal and mechanical loading. Thesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maddocks, Jason R.

    1995-01-01

    Composites used in space structures are exposed to both extremes in temperature and applied mechanical loads. Cracks in the matrix form, changing the laminate thermoelastic properties. The goal of the present investigation is to develop a predictive methodology to quantify microcracking in general composite laminates under both thermal and mechanical loading. This objective is successfully met through a combination of analytical modeling and experimental investigation. In the analysis, the stress and displacement distributions in the vicinity of a crack are determined using a shear lag model. These are incorporated into an energy based cracking criterion to determine the favorability of crack formation. A progressive damage algorithm allows the inclusion of material softening effects and temperature-dependent material properties. The analysis is implemented by a computer code which gives predicted crack density and degraded laminate properties as functions of any thermomechanical load history. Extensive experimentation provides verification of the analysis. AS4/3501-6 graphite/epoxy laminates are manufactured with three different layups to investigate ply thickness and orientation effects. Thermal specimens are cooled to progressively lower temperatures down to -184 C. After conditioning the specimens to each temperature, cracks are counted on their edges using optical microscopy and in their interiors by sanding to incremental depths. Tensile coupons are loaded monotonically to progressively higher loads until failure. Cracks are counted on the coupon edges after each loading. A data fit to all available results provides input parameters for the analysis and shows them to be material properties, independent of geometry and loading. Correlation between experiment and analysis is generally very good under both thermal and mechanical loading, showing the methodology to be a powerful, unified tool. Delayed crack initiation observed in a few cases is attributed to a

  5. Mechanical Modeling of a WIPP Drum Under Pressure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smith, Jeffrey A. [Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2014-11-25

    Mechanical modeling was undertaken to support the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) technical assessment team (TAT) investigating the February 14th 2014 event where there was a radiological release at the WIPP. The initial goal of the modeling was to examine if a mechanical model could inform the team about the event. The intention was to have a model that could test scenarios with respect to the rate of pressurization. It was expected that the deformation and failure (inability of the drum to contain any pressure) would vary according to the pressurization rate. As the work progressed there was also interest in using the mechanical analysis of the drum to investigate what would happen if a drum pressurized when it was located under a standard waste package. Specifically, would the deformation be detectable from camera views within the room. A finite element model of a WIPP 55-gallon drum was developed that used all hex elements. Analyses were conducted using the explicit transient dynamics module of Sierra/SM to explore potential pressurization scenarios of the drum. Theses analysis show similar deformation patterns to documented pressurization tests of drums in the literature. The calculated failure pressures from previous tests documented in the literature vary from as little as 16 psi to 320 psi. In addition, previous testing documented in the literature shows drums bulging but not failing at pressures ranging from 69 to 138 psi. The analyses performed for this study found the drums failing at pressures ranging from 35 psi to 75 psi. When the drums are pressurized quickly (in 0.01 seconds) there is significant deformation to the lid. At lower pressurization rates the deformation of the lid is considerably less, yet the lids will still open from the pressure. The analyses demonstrate the influence of pressurization rate on deformation and opening pressure of the drums. Analyses conducted with a substantial mass on top of the closed drum demonstrate that the

  6. Dynamics and causality constraints

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sousa, Manoelito M. de

    2001-04-01

    The physical meaning and the geometrical interpretation of causality implementation in classical field theories are discussed. Causality in field theory are kinematical constraints dynamically implemented via solutions of the field equation, but in a limit of zero-distance from the field sources part of these constraints carries a dynamical content that explains old problems of classical electrodynamics away with deep implications to the nature of physicals interactions. (author)

  7. Causality and Time in Historical Institutionalism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mahoney, James; Mohamedali, Khairunnisa; Nguyen, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    This chapter explores the dual concern with causality and time in historical institutionalism using a graphical approach. The analysis focuses on three concepts that are central to this field: critical junctures, gradual change, and path dependence. The analysis makes explicit and formal the logic...... underlying studies that use these “causal-temporal” concepts. The chapter shows visually how causality and temporality are linked to one another in varying ways depending on the particular pattern of change. The chapter provides new tools for describing and understanding change in historical- institutional...

  8. Video analysis of concussion injury mechanism in under-18 rugby

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendricks, Sharief; O'Connor, Sam; Lambert, Michael; Brown, James C; Burger, Nicholas; Mc Fie, Sarah; Readhead, Clint; Viljoen, Wayne

    2016-01-01

    Background Understanding the mechanism of injury is necessary for the development of effective injury prevention strategies. Video analysis of injuries provides valuable information on the playing situation and athlete-movement patterns, which can be used to formulate these strategies. Therefore, we conducted a video analysis of the mechanism of concussion injury in junior-level rugby union and compared it with a representative and matched non-injury sample. Methods Injury reports for 18 concussion events were collected from the 2011 to 2013 under-18 Craven Week tournaments. Also, video footage was recorded for all 3 years. On the basis of the injury events, a representative ‘control’ sample of matched non-injury events in the same players was identified. The video footage, which had been recorded at each tournament, was then retrospectively analysed and coded. 10 injury events (5 tackle, 4 ruck, 1 aerial collision) and 83 non-injury events were analysed. Results All concussions were a result of contact with an opponent and 60% of players were unaware of the impending contact. For the measurement of head position on contact, 43% had a ‘down’ position, 29% the ‘up and forward’ and 29% the ‘away’ position (n=7). The speed of the injured tackler was observed as ‘slow’ in 60% of injurious tackles (n=5). In 3 of the 4 rucks in which injury occurred (75%), the concussed player was acting defensively either in the capacity of ‘support’ (n=2) or as the ‘jackal’ (n=1). Conclusions Training interventions aimed at improving peripheral vision, strengthening of the cervical muscles, targeted conditioning programmes to reduce the effects of fatigue, and emphasising safe and effective playing techniques have the potential to reduce the risk of sustaining a concussion injury. PMID:27900149

  9. Video analysis of concussion injury mechanism in under-18 rugby.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendricks, Sharief; O'Connor, Sam; Lambert, Michael; Brown, James C; Burger, Nicholas; Mc Fie, Sarah; Readhead, Clint; Viljoen, Wayne

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the mechanism of injury is necessary for the development of effective injury prevention strategies. Video analysis of injuries provides valuable information on the playing situation and athlete-movement patterns, which can be used to formulate these strategies. Therefore, we conducted a video analysis of the mechanism of concussion injury in junior-level rugby union and compared it with a representative and matched non-injury sample. Injury reports for 18 concussion events were collected from the 2011 to 2013 under-18 Craven Week tournaments. Also, video footage was recorded for all 3 years. On the basis of the injury events, a representative 'control' sample of matched non-injury events in the same players was identified. The video footage, which had been recorded at each tournament, was then retrospectively analysed and coded. 10 injury events (5 tackle, 4 ruck, 1 aerial collision) and 83 non-injury events were analysed. All concussions were a result of contact with an opponent and 60% of players were unaware of the impending contact. For the measurement of head position on contact , 43% had a 'down' position, 29% the 'up and forward' and 29% the 'away' position (n=7). The speed of the injured tackler was observed as 'slow' in 60% of injurious tackles (n=5). In 3 of the 4 rucks in which injury occurred (75%), the concussed player was acting defensively either in the capacity of 'support' (n=2) or as the 'jackal' (n=1). Training interventions aimed at improving peripheral vision, strengthening of the cervical muscles, targeted conditioning programmes to reduce the effects of fatigue, and emphasising safe and effective playing techniques have the potential to reduce the risk of sustaining a concussion injury.

  10. Underlying Mechanisms of Tinnitus: Review and Clinical Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, James A.; Roberts, Larry E.; Caspary, Donald M.; Theodoroff, Sarah M.; Salvi, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Background The study of tinnitus mechanisms has increased tenfold in the last decade. The common denominator for all of these studies is the goal of elucidating the underlying neural mechanisms of tinnitus with the ultimate purpose of finding a cure. While these basic science findings may not be immediately applicable to the clinician who works directly with patients to assist them in managing their reactions to tinnitus, a clear understanding of these findings is needed to develop the most effective procedures for alleviating tinnitus. Purpose The goal of this review is to provide audiologists and other health-care professionals with a basic understanding of the neurophysiological changes in the auditory system likely to be responsible for tinnitus. Results It is increasingly clear that tinnitus is a pathology involving neuroplastic changes in central auditory structures that take place when the brain is deprived of its normal input by pathology in the cochlea. Cochlear pathology is not always expressed in the audiogram but may be detected by more sensitive measures. Neural changes can occur at the level of synapses between inner hair cells and the auditory nerve and within multiple levels of the central auditory pathway. Long-term maintenance of tinnitus is likely a function of a complex network of structures involving central auditory and nonauditory systems. Conclusions Patients often have expectations that a treatment exists to cure their tinnitus. They should be made aware that research is increasing to discover such a cure and that their reactions to tinnitus can be mitigated through the use of evidence-based behavioral interventions. PMID:24622858

  11. Mechanisms underlying recovery of zooplankton in Lake Orta after liming

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    Roberta Piscia

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The goal of this study was to improve the understanding of the large-scale mechanisms underlying the recovery of the zooplankton of Lake Orta from historical contamination, following reduced input of ammonia and metals and the subsequent 1989/90 liming intervention. The industrial pollution had been severe and long-lasting (1929-1990. Zooplankton biodiversity has improved, but most of the new taxa appearing in our counts are rotifers, while many calanoids and the large cladoceran predators (Bythotrephes and Leptodora that are common in the nearby Lake Maggiore, were still absent from Lake Orta 17 years after liming. To aid understanding of the large-scale mechanisms controlling changes in annual richness, we assessed the annual persistence (P of Crustacea and Rotifera taxa as an estimator of whether propagules that survived introduction, as result of the natural recolonization process, also thrived. We found that the rate of introduction of zooplankton colonists and their persistence in the water column of Lake Orta changed from 1971 to 2007. New rotifer taxa appeared in the lake after the mid-1980s, when discharge of toxic substances decreased, but their annual persistence was low (P<0.5 until the turn of the century. The numerical values of rotifer and crustacean persistence in Lake Orta were unexpectedly high in 2001 and 2007 (0.55 and 0.72 for rotifers, 0.85 and 0.86 for crustacean, respectively, much higher than in limed lakes in Sudbury, Canada, and in adjacent Lake Maggiore. We hypothesize this could be related to the lack of Cladoceran predators and zooplanktivorous fish in the pelagic waters of Lake Orta.

  12. Mechanisms underlying stage-1 TRPL channel translocation in Drosophila photoreceptors.

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    Minh-Ha Lieu

    Full Text Available TRP channels function as key mediators of sensory transduction and other cellular signaling pathways. In Drosophila, TRP and TRPL are the light-activated channels in photoreceptors. While TRP is statically localized in the signaling compartment of the cell (the rhabdomere, TRPL localization is regulated by light. TRPL channels translocate out of the rhabdomere in two distinct stages, returning to the rhabdomere with dark-incubation. Translocation of TRPL channels regulates their availability, and thereby the gain of the signal. Little, however, is known about the mechanisms underlying this trafficking of TRPL channels.We first examine the involvement of de novo protein synthesis in TRPL translocation. We feed flies cycloheximide, verify inhibition of protein synthesis, and test for TRPL translocation in photoreceptors. We find that protein synthesis is not involved in either stage of TRPL translocation out of the rhabdomere, but that re-localization to the rhabdomere from stage-1, but not stage-2, depends on protein synthesis. We also characterize an ex vivo eye preparation that is amenable to biochemical and genetic manipulation. We use this preparation to examine mechanisms of stage-1 TRPL translocation. We find that stage-1 translocation is: induced with ATP depletion, unaltered with perturbation of the actin cytoskeleton or inhibition of endocytosis, and slowed with increased membrane sterol content.Our results indicate that translocation of TRPL out of the rhabdomere is likely due to protein transport, and not degradation/re-synthesis. Re-localization from each stage to the rhabdomere likely involves different strategies. Since TRPL channels can translocate to stage-1 in the absence of ATP, with no major requirement of the cytoskeleton, we suggest that stage-1 translocation involves simple diffusion through the apical membrane, which may be regulated by release of a light-dependent anchor in the rhabdomere.

  13. The behavior of the planetary rings under the Kozai Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sucerquia, M. A.; Ramírez, C. V.; Zuluaga, J. I.

    2017-07-01

    Rings are one of the main feature of almost all giant planets in the Solar System. Even though thousands of exoplanets have been discovered to date, no evidence of exoplanetary rings have been found despite the effort made in the development and enhancing of techniques and methods for direct or indirect detection. In the transit of a ringed planet, the dynamic of the ring itself could play a meaningful role due to the so called Kozai Mechanism (KM) acting on each particle of it. When some specific initial conditions of the ring are fulfilled (as a ring inclination greater than ˜ 39°), KM generates short periodic changes in the inclination and eccentricity of each particle, leading to a meaningful characteristic collective behavior of the ring: it changes its width, inclination and optical depth. These changes induce periodic variations on the eclipsed area of the parent star, generating slight changes in the observed transit signal. Under this mechanism, light curves depths and shapes oscillate according to the fluctuations of the ring. To show this effect we have performed numerical simulations of the dynamic of a system of particles to asses the ring inclination and width variations over time. We have calculated the expected variations in the transit depth and finally, we have estimated the effect on the light curve of a hypothetical ringed exoplanet affected by the KM. The detection of this effect could be used as an alternative method to detect/confirm exoplanetary rings, and also it could be considered as a way to explain anomalous light curves patterns of exoplanets, as the case of KIC 8462852 star.

  14. Neural Mechanisms Underlying Hyperphagia in Prader-Willi Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holsen, Laura M.; Zarcone, Jennifer R.; Brooks, William M.; Butler, Merlin G.; Thompson, Travis I.; Ahluwalia, Jasjit S.; Nollen, Nicole L.; Savage, Cary R.

    2006-01-01

    Objective Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is a genetic disorder associated with developmental delay, obesity, and obsessive behavior related to food consumption. The most striking symptom of PWS is hyperphagia; as such, PWS may provide important insights into factors leading to overeating and obesity in the general population. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study the neural mechanisms underlying responses to visual food stimuli, before and after eating, in individuals with PWS and a healthy weight control (HWC) group. Research Methods and Procedures Participants were scanned once before (pre-meal) and once after (post-meal) eating a standardized meal. Pictures of food, animals, and blurred control images were presented in a block design format during acquisition of functional magnetic resonance imaging data. Results Statistical contrasts in the HWC group showed greater activation to food pictures in the pre-meal condition compared with the post-meal condition in the amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, medial prefrontal cortex (medial PFC), and frontal operculum. In comparison, the PWS group exhibited greater activation to food pictures in the post-meal condition compared with the pre-meal condition in the orbitofrontal cortex, medial PFC, insula, hippocampus, and parahippocampal gyrus. Between-group contrasts in the pre- and post-meal conditions confirmed group differences, with the PWS group showing greater activation than the HWC group after the meal in food motivation networks. Discussion Results point to distinct neural mechanisms associated with hyperphagia in PWS. After eating a meal, the PWS group showed hyperfunction in limbic and para-limbic regions that drive eating behavior (e.g., the amygdala) and in regions that suppress food intake (e.g., the medial PFC). PMID:16861608

  15. Neural mechanisms underlying hyperphagia in Prader-Willi syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holsen, Laura M; Zarcone, Jennifer R; Brooks, William M; Butler, Merlin G; Thompson, Travis I; Ahluwalia, Jasjit S; Nollen, Nicole L; Savage, Cary R

    2006-06-01

    Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is a genetic disorder associated with developmental delay, obesity, and obsessive behavior related to food consumption. The most striking symptom of PWS is hyperphagia; as such, PWS may provide important insights into factors leading to overeating and obesity in the general population. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to study the neural mechanisms underlying responses to visual food stimuli, before and after eating, in individuals with PWS and a healthy weight control (HWC) group. Participants were scanned once before (pre-meal) and once after (post-meal) eating a standardized meal. Pictures of food, animals, and blurred control images were presented in a block design format during acquisition of functional magnetic resonance imaging data. Statistical contrasts in the HWC group showed greater activation to food pictures in the pre-meal condition compared with the post-meal condition in the amygdala, orbitofrontal cortex, medial prefrontal cortex (medial PFC), and frontal operculum. In comparison, the PWS group exhibited greater activation to food pictures in the post-meal condition compared with the pre-meal condition in the orbitofrontal cortex, medial PFC, insula, hippocampus, and parahippocampal gyrus. Between-group contrasts in the pre- and post-meal conditions confirmed group differences, with the PWS group showing greater activation than the HWC group after the meal in food motivation networks. Results point to distinct neural mechanisms associated with hyperphagia in PWS. After eating a meal, the PWS group showed hyperfunction in limbic and paralimbic regions that drive eating behavior (e.g., the amygdala) and in regions that suppress food intake (e.g., the medial PFC).

  16. Mechanisms Underlying HIV-Associated Noninfectious Lung Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Presti, Rachel M; Flores, Sonia C; Palmer, Brent E; Atkinson, Jeffrey J; Lesko, Catherine R; Lau, Bryan; Fontenot, Andrew P; Roman, Jesse; McDyer, John F; Twigg, Homer L

    2017-11-01

    Pulmonary disease remains a primary source of morbidity and mortality in persons living with HIV (PLWH), although the advent of potent combination antiretroviral therapy has resulted in a shift from predominantly infectious to noninfectious pulmonary complications. PLWH are at high risk for COPD, pulmonary hypertension, and lung cancer even in the era of combination antiretroviral therapy. The underlying mechanisms of this are incompletely understood, but recent research in both human and animal models suggests that oxidative stress, expression of matrix metalloproteinases, and genetic instability may result in lung damage, which predisposes PLWH to these conditions. Some of the factors that drive these processes include tobacco and other substance use, direct HIV infection and expression of specific HIV proteins, inflammation, and shifts in the microbiome toward pathogenic and opportunistic organisms. Further studies are needed to understand the relative importance of these factors to the development of lung disease in PLWH. Copyright © 2017 American College of Chest Physicians. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. [Neurophysiologic mechanisms of arterial hypertension under experimental chronic emotional stress].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumann, H; Martin, G; Urmantscheeva, T G; Degen, G; Wolter, F; Chasabova, W A; Gurk, C; Hinays, I; Läuter, J

    1976-01-01

    Neurophysiological studies were conducted with subhuman primates (macaca mulatta) in order to obtain an estimate of central nervous effects of socio-emotional stress. This was combined with continuously aggravated conditioning procedures in view of the possible significance of chronic environmental stress escalation for etiology and pathogenesis of an arterial hypertension model. Our conclusions are based on evoked potentials (EP) as integrative characteristics of cerebral information processing. The EPs were recorded by means of electrodes chronically implanted in brain structures of emotional and cardio-vascular relevance. Multivariate mathematico-statistical analyses of average EPs (AEP) provide an objective measure of stress sensibility of the individual, particularly of the effects of acute and chronic environmental stress factors upon the functional organization of the CNS. By means of a quantitative approach to AEP we were able to demonstrate a disjunction between distinct limbic and hypothalamic structures starting under stress conditions of subchronic character. We assume that the constancy of functionally antagonistic hyperactive excitation foci at diencephalic and supradiencephalic levels and their specific interaction with the equally stress related neocortical functional insufficiency constitutes a decisive pathogenetic central mechanism of neurotic behaviour. Long-term changes of amplification of external and internal afferences could be demonstrated on the basis of hypo- and hyperreactive neuroelectric functional patterns. These processes cause cerebro-visceral regulatory diseases as, e. g., a primary arterial hypertension by restriction of neocortical control and the corresponding efferent reactions for re-establishment of the dynamic homeostasis.

  18. Deciphering Molecular Mechanism Underlying Hypolipidemic Activity of Echinocystic Acid

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    Li Han

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Our previous study showed that a triterpene mixture, consisting of echinocystic acid (EA and oleanolic acid (OA at a ratio of 4 : 1, dose-dependently ameliorated the hyperlipidemia and atherosclerosis in rabbits fed with high fat/high cholesterol diets. This study was aimed at exploring the mechanisms underlying antihyperlipidemic effect of EA. Molecular docking simulation of EA was performed using Molegro Virtual Docker (version: 4.3.0 to investigate the potential targets related to lipid metabolism. Based on the molecular docking information, isotope labeling method or spectrophotometry was applied to examine the effect of EA on the activity of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA reductase, acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase (ACAT, and diacylglycerol acyltransferase (DGAT in rat liver microsomes. Our results revealed a strong affinity of EA towards ACAT and DGAT in molecular docking analysis, while low binding affinity existed between EA and HMG-CoA reductase as well as between EA and cholesteryl ester transfer protein. Consistent with the results of molecular docking, in vitro enzyme activity assays showed that EA inhibited ACAT and DGAT, with IC50 values of 103 and 139 μM, respectively, and exhibited no significant effect on HMG-CoA reductase activity. The present findings suggest that EA may exert hypolipidemic effect by inhibiting the activity of ACAT and DGAT.

  19. Molecular mechanisms underlying phosphate sensing, signaling, and adaptation in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhaoliang; Liao, Hong; Lucas, William J

    2014-03-01

    As an essential plant macronutrient, the low availability of phosphorus (P) in most soils imposes serious limitation on crop production. Plants have evolved complex responsive and adaptive mechanisms for acquisition, remobilization and recycling of phosphate (Pi) to maintain P homeostasis. Spatio-temporal molecular, physiological, and biochemical Pi deficiency responses developed by plants are the consequence of local and systemic sensing and signaling pathways. Pi deficiency is sensed locally by the root system where hormones serve as important signaling components in terms of developmental reprogramming, leading to changes in root system architecture. Root-to-shoot and shoot-to-root signals, delivered through the xylem and phloem, respectively, involving Pi itself, hormones, miRNAs, mRNAs, and sucrose, serve to coordinate Pi deficiency responses at the whole-plant level. A combination of chromatin remodeling, transcriptional and posttranslational events contribute to globally regulating a wide range of Pi deficiency responses. In this review, recent advances are evaluated in terms of progress toward developing a comprehensive understanding of the molecular events underlying control over P homeostasis. Application of this knowledge, in terms of developing crop plants having enhanced attributes for P use efficiency, is discussed from the perspective of agricultural sustainability in the face of diminishing global P supplies. © 2014 Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  20. Fatigue life prediction of mechanical structures under stochastic loading

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    Leitner Bohuš

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Problems of fatigue life prediction of materials and structures are discussed in the paper. Service loading is assumed as a continuous loading process with possible discontinuous events, which are caused by various operating conditions. The damage in a material is due to a cumulative degradation process. The damaging process is then represented either by rain-flow matrices or by a fatigue damage function which is derived using some hypothesis of a fatigue failure criterion. Presented theoretical procedure enables a very effective estimation of a service life and/or reliable evaluation of residual life of any structures under various types of loading and environmental conditions. This approach creates a good basis for powerful expert systems in structural and mechanical engineering. The aim of the paper is to present briefly some results of analysis of load-bearing steel structure loads of special railway crane PKP 25/20i which was utilized in some specific ad relatively hard operating conditions. Virtual models of the structure were being used in an analysis of acting working dynamics loads influence to be able to forecast fatigue life of load-bearing of the crane jib.

  1. Neural mechanisms underlying the induction and relief of perceptual curiosity

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    Marieke eJepma

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Curiosity is one of the most basic biological drives in both animals and humans, and has been identified as a key motive for learning and discovery. Despite the importance of curiosity and related behaviors, the topic has been largely neglected in human neuroscience; hence little is known about the neurobiological mechanisms underlying curiosity. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to investigate what happens in our brain during the induction and subsequent relief of perceptual curiosity. Our core findings were that (i the induction of perceptual curiosity, through the presentation of ambiguous visual input, activated the anterior insula and anterior cingulate cortex, brain regions sensitive to conflict and arousal; (ii the relief of perceptual curiosity, through visual disambiguation, activated regions of the striatum that have been related to reward processing; and (iii the relief of perceptual curiosity was associated with hippocampal activation and enhanced incidental memory. These findings provide the first demonstration of the neural basis of human perceptual curiosity. Our results provide neurobiological support for a classic psychological theory of curiosity, which holds that curiosity is an aversive condition of increased arousal whose termination is rewarding and facilitates memory.

  2. Spread of Epidemic on Complex Networks Under Voluntary Vaccination Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Shengjun; Ruan, Feng; Yin, Chuanyang; Zhang, Haifeng; Wang, Binghong

    Under the assumption that the decision of vaccination is a voluntary behavior, in this paper, we use two forms of risk functions to characterize how susceptible individuals estimate the perceived risk of infection. One is uniform case, where each susceptible individual estimates the perceived risk of infection only based on the density of infection at each time step, so the risk function is only a function of the density of infection; another is preferential case, where each susceptible individual estimates the perceived risk of infection not only based on the density of infection but only related to its own activities/immediate neighbors (in network terminology, the activity or the number of immediate neighbors is the degree of node), so the risk function is a function of the density of infection and the degree of individuals. By investigating two different ways of estimating the risk of infection for susceptible individuals on complex network, we find that, for the preferential case, the spread of epidemic can be effectively controlled; yet, for the uniform case, voluntary vaccination mechanism is almost invalid in controlling the spread of epidemic on networks. Furthermore, given the temporality of some vaccines, the waves of epidemic for two cases are also different. Therefore, our work insight that the way of estimating the perceived risk of infection determines the decision on vaccination options, and then determines the success or failure of control strategy.

  3. Mechanisms underlying the antihypertensive effects of garlic bioactives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shouk, Reem; Abdou, Aya; Shetty, Kalidas; Sarkar, Dipayan; Eid, Ali H

    2014-02-01

    Cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death worldwide with hypertension being a major contributing factor to cardiovascular disease-associated mortality. On a population level, non-pharmacological approaches, such as alternative/complementary medicine, including phytochemicals, have the potential to ameliorate cardiovascular risk factors, including high blood pressure. Several epidemiological studies suggest an antihypertensive effect of garlic (Allium sativum) and of many its bioactive components. The aim of this review is to present an in-depth discussion regarding the molecular, biochemical and cellular rationale underlying the antihypertensive properties of garlic and its bioactive constituents with a primary focus on S-allyl cysteine and allicin. Key studies, largely from PubMed, were selected and screened to develop a comprehensive understanding of the specific role of garlic and its bioactive constituents in the management of hypertension. We also reviewed recent advances focusing on the role of garlic bioactives, S-allyl cysteine and allicin, in modulating various parameters implicated in the pathogenesis of hypertension. These parameters include oxidative stress, nitric oxide bioavailability, hydrogen sulfide production, angiotensin converting enzyme activity, expression of nuclear factor-κB and the proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells. This review suggests that garlic and garlic derived bioactives have significant medicinal properties with the potential for ameliorating hypertension and associated morbidity; however, further clinical and epidemiological studies are required to determine completely the specific physiological and biochemical mechanisms involved in disease prevention and management. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Mechanism of crack initiation and crack growth under thermal and mechanical fatigue loading

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Utz, S.; Soppa, E.; Silcher, H.; Kohler, C.

    2013-01-01

    The present contribution is focused on the experimental investigations and numerical simulations of the deformation behaviour and crack development in the austenitic stainless steel X6CrNiNb18-10 under thermal and mechanical cyclic loading in HCF and LCF regimes. The main objective of this research is the understanding of the basic mechanisms of fatigue damage and the development of simulation methods, which can be applied further in safety evaluations of nuclear power plant components. In this context the modelling of crack initiation and crack growth inside the material structure induced by varying thermal or mechanical loads are of particular interest. The mechanisms of crack initiation depend among other things on the type of loading, microstructure, material properties and temperature. The Nb-stabilized austenitic stainless steel in the solution-annealed condition was chosen for the investigations. Experiments with two kinds of cyclic loading - pure thermal and pure mechanical - were carried out and simulated. The fatigue behaviour of the steel X6CrNiNb18-10 under thermal loading was studied within the framework of the joint research project [4]. Interrupted thermal cyclic tests in the temperature range of 150 C to 300 C combined with non-destructive residual stress measurements (XRD) and various microscopic investigations, e.g. in SEM (Scanning Electron Microscope), were used to study the effects of thermal cyclic loading on the material. This thermal cyclic loading leads to thermal induced stresses and strains. As a result intrusions and extrusions appear inside the grains (at the surface), at which microcracks arise and evolve to a dominant crack. Finally, these microcracks cause a continuous and significant decrease of residual stresses. The fatigue behaviour of the steel X6CrNiNb18-10 under mechanical loading at room temperature was studied within the framework of the research project [5], [8]. With a combination of interrupted LCF tests and EBSD

  5. Mechanism of crack initiation and crack growth under thermal and mechanical fatigue loading

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Utz, S.; Soppa, E.; Silcher, H.; Kohler, C. [Stuttgart Univ. (Germany). Materials Testing Inst.

    2013-07-01

    The present contribution is focused on the experimental investigations and numerical simulations of the deformation behaviour and crack development in the austenitic stainless steel X6CrNiNb18-10 under thermal and mechanical cyclic loading in HCF and LCF regimes. The main objective of this research is the understanding of the basic mechanisms of fatigue damage and the development of simulation methods, which can be applied further in safety evaluations of nuclear power plant components. In this context the modelling of crack initiation and crack growth inside the material structure induced by varying thermal or mechanical loads are of particular interest. The mechanisms of crack initiation depend among other things on the type of loading, microstructure, material properties and temperature. The Nb-stabilized austenitic stainless steel in the solution-annealed condition was chosen for the investigations. Experiments with two kinds of cyclic loading - pure thermal and pure mechanical - were carried out and simulated. The fatigue behaviour of the steel X6CrNiNb18-10 under thermal loading was studied within the framework of the joint research project [4]. Interrupted thermal cyclic tests in the temperature range of 150 C to 300 C combined with non-destructive residual stress measurements (XRD) and various microscopic investigations, e.g. in SEM (Scanning Electron Microscope), were used to study the effects of thermal cyclic loading on the material. This thermal cyclic loading leads to thermal induced stresses and strains. As a result intrusions and extrusions appear inside the grains (at the surface), at which microcracks arise and evolve to a dominant crack. Finally, these microcracks cause a continuous and significant decrease of residual stresses. The fatigue behaviour of the steel X6CrNiNb18-10 under mechanical loading at room temperature was studied within the framework of the research project [5], [8]. With a combination of interrupted LCF tests and EBSD

  6. Mechanisms underlying the antihypertensive properties of Urtica dioica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qayyum, Rahila; Qamar, Hafiz Misbah-Ud-Din; Khan, Shamim; Salma, Umme; Khan, Taous; Shah, Abdul Jabbar

    2016-09-01

    Urtica dioica has traditionally been used in the management of cardiovascular disorders especially hypertension. The aim of this study was to explore pharmacological base of its use in hypertension. Crude methanolic extract of U. dioica (Ud.Cr) and its fractions (Ud.EtAc, Ud.nHex, Ud.Chl and Ud.Aq) were tested in vivo on normotensive and hypertensive rats under anesthesia for blood pressure lowering effect. In-vitro experiments on rat and rabbit aortae were employed to probe the vasorelaxation mechanism(s). The responses were measured using pressure and force transducers connected to PowerLab Data Acquisition System. Ud.Cr and fractions were found more effective antihypertensive in hypertensive rats than normotensive with remarkable potency exhibited by the ethyl acetate fraction. The effect was same in the presence of atropine. In isolated rat aortic rings, Ud.Cr and all its fractions exhibited L-NAME sensitive endothelium-dependent vasodilator effect and also inhibit K(+) (80 mM)-induced pre-contractions. In isolated rabbit thoracic aortic rings Ud.Cr and its fractions induced relaxation with more potency against K(+) (80 mM) than phenylephrine (1 µM) like verapamil, showing Ud.EtAc fraction the most potent one. Pre-incubation of aortic rings with Ud.Cr and its fractions exhibited Ca(2+) channel blocking activity comparable with verapamil by shifting Ca(2+) concentration response curves to the right. Ud.Cr and its fractions also ablated the intracellular Ca(2+) release by suppressing PE peak formation in Ca(2+) free medium. When tested on basal tension, the crude extract and all fractions were devoid of any vasoconstrictor effect. These data indicate that crude methanolic extract and its fractions possess antihypertensive effect. Identification of NO-mediated vasorelaxation and calcium channel blocking effects explain the antihypertensive potential of U. dioica and provide a potential pharmacological base to its medicinal use in the management of hypertension.

  7. Antioxidant Property of Jobelyn as the Possible Mechanism Underlying

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    Solomon Umukoro

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available   Introduction: Amnesia or loss of memory is the cardinal hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease (AD, a progressive neurodegenerative disorder associated with ageing process. Although, AD had been discovered over a century ago, drugs which could cure or halt the progression of the disease are yet to see the light of the day. However, there has been a growing interest in the use of phytomedicines with multipronged mechanisms of action that could target various aspects of the pathologies of AD. Jobelyn (JB is a potent antioxidant African polyherbal formulation with active components that have been acclaimed to show neuroprotection. T his investigation was carried out to evaluate whether JB has anti-amnesic and antioxidant activities.   Methods: The alteration of alternation behavior in the Y-maze paradigm was utilized as the test for memory function in mice. The effect of JB on a cetylcholinesterase (AChE activity, malondialdehyde (MDA level and the concentrations of glutathione (GSH in the frontal cortex and hippocampus were assessed in rats as means of providing insight into the mechanism underlying its anti-amnesic activity. The animals were given JB (1, 2.5 or 5mg/kg, i.p. daily for 7 days before the biochemical assays or test for memory functions were carried out.   Results: JB was found to produce a significant increase in the level of alternation behavior compared with the control, suggesting anti-amnesic activity. Also, JB reversed the memory impairment induced by scopolamine, which further indicates anti-amnesic property. Furthermore, JB demonstrated a significant inhibition of MDA formation in the frontal cortex and hippocampus of rats, indicating antioxidant property. In addition, it increased the defense armory of the brain tissues, as it significantly increased the concentrations of GSH in the frontal cortex and hippocampus of rats. However, JB did not demonstrate any inhibitory effect against AChE activity in the frontal cortex and

  8. Bronchopulmonary dysplasia: understanding of the underlying pathological mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Fanni

    2014-06-01

    better understanding of the underlying pathological mechanisms of BPD might provide insight into development of new therapeutic and preventive strategies.  Proceedings of the International Course on Perinatal Pathology (part of the 10th International Workshop on Neonatology · October 22nd-25th, 2014 · Cagliari (Italy · October 25th, 2014 · The role of the clinical pathological dialogue in problem solving Guest Editors: Gavino Faa, Vassilios Fanos, Peter Van Eyken

  9. Dynamics Of Causal Sets

    CERN Document Server

    Rideout, D P

    2001-01-01

    The Causal Set approach to quantum gravity asserts that spacetime, at its smallest length scale, has a discrete structure. This discrete structure takes the form of a locally finite order relation, where the order, corresponding with the macroscopic notion of spacetime causality, is taken to be a fundamental aspect of nature. After an introduction to the Causal Set approach, this thesis considers a simple toy dynamics for causal sets. Numerical simulations of the model provide evidence for the existence of a continuum limit. While studying this toy dynamics, a picture arises of how the dynamics can be generalized in such a way that the theory could hope to produce more physically realistic causal sets. By thinking in terms of a stochastic growth process, and positing some fundamental principles, we are led almost uniquely to a family of dynamical laws (stochastic processes) parameterized by a countable sequence of coupling constants. This result is quite promising in that we now know how to speak of dynamics ...

  10. Alteration mechanisms of UOX spent fuel under water

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muzeau, B.

    2008-06-01

    The mechanisms of spent fuel alteration in aqueous media need to be understood on the assumption of a direct disposal of the assemblies in a geological formation or for long duration storage in pool. This work is a contribution to the study of the effects of the alpha and/or beta/gamma radiolysis of water on the oxidation and the dissolution of the UO 2 matrix of UOX spent fuel. The effects of the alpha radiolysis, predominant in geological disposal conditions, were quantified by using samples of UO 2 doped with plutonium. The leaching experiments highlighted two types of control for the matrix alteration according to the alpha activity. The first is based on the radiolytic oxidation of the surface and leads to a continuous release of uranium in solution whereas the second is based on a control by the solubility of uranium. An activity threshold, between 18 MBq.g -1 and 33 MBq.g -1 , was defined in a carbonated water. The value of this threshold is dependent on the experimental conditions and the presence or not of electro-active species such as hydrogen in the system. The effects of the alpha/beta/gamma radiolysis in relation with the storage conditions were also quantified. The experimental data obtained on spent fuel indicate that the alteration rate of the matrix based on the behaviour of tracer elements (caesium and strontium) reached a maximum value of some mg.m -2 .d -1 , even under very oxidizing conditions. The solubility of uranium and the nature of the secondary phases depend however on the extent of the oxidizing conditions. (author)

  11. Unraveling the Molecular Mechanisms Underlying the Nasopharyngeal Bacterial Community Structure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wouter A. A. de Steenhuijsen Piters

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The upper respiratory tract is colonized by a diverse array of commensal bacteria that harbor potential pathogens, such as Streptococcus pneumoniae. As long as the local microbial ecosystem—also called “microbiome”—is in balance, these potentially pathogenic bacterial residents cause no harm to the host. However, similar to macrobiological ecosystems, when the bacterial community structure gets perturbed, potential pathogens can overtake the niche and cause mild to severe infections. Recent studies using next-generation sequencing show that S. pneumoniae, as well as other potential pathogens, might be kept at bay by certain commensal bacteria, including Corynebacterium and Dolosigranulum spp. Bomar and colleagues are the first to explore a specific biological mechanism contributing to the antagonistic interaction between Corynebacterium accolens and S. pneumoniae in vitro [L. Bomar, S. D. Brugger, B. H. Yost, S. S. Davies, K. P. Lemon, mBio 7(1:e01725-15, 2016, doi:10.1128/mBio.01725-15]. The authors comprehensively show that C. accolens is capable of hydrolyzing host triacylglycerols into free fatty acids, which display antipneumococcal properties, suggesting that these bacteria might contribute to the containment of pneumococcus. This work exemplifies how molecular epidemiological findings can lay the foundation for mechanistic studies to elucidate the host-microbe and microbial interspecies interactions underlying the bacterial community structure. Next, translation of these results to an in vivo setting seems necessary to unveil the magnitude and importance of the observed effect in its natural, polymicrobial setting.

  12. Cognitive mechanisms underlying instructed choice exploration of small city maps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sofia eSakellaridi

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the cognitive mechanisms underlying the exploration and decision-making in realistic and novel environments. Twelve human subjects were shown small circular U.S. city maps with two locations highlighted on the circumference, as possible choices for a post office (targets. At the beginning of a trial, subjects fixated a spot at the center of the map and ultimately chose one of the two locations. A space syntax analysis of the map paths (from the center to each target revealed that the chosen location was associated with the less convoluted path, as if subjects navigated mentally the paths in an ant’s way, i.e. by staying within street boundaries, and ultimately choosing the target that could be reached from the center in the shortest way, and the fewest turns and intersections. The subjects’ strategy for map exploration and decision making was investigated by monitoring eye position during the task. This revealed a restricted exploration of the map delimited by the location of the two alternative options and the center of the map. Specifically, subjects explored the areas around the two target options by repeatedly looking at them before deciding which one to choose, presumably implementing an evaluation and decision-making process. The ultimate selection of a specific target was significantly associated with the time spent exploring the area around that target. Finally, an analysis of the sequence of eye fixations revealed that subjects tended to look systematically towards the target ultimately chosen even from the beginning of the trial. This finding indicates an early cognitive selection bias for the ensuing decision process.

  13. Causal inference in econometrics

    CERN Document Server

    Kreinovich, Vladik; Sriboonchitta, Songsak

    2016-01-01

    This book is devoted to the analysis of causal inference which is one of the most difficult tasks in data analysis: when two phenomena are observed to be related, it is often difficult to decide whether one of them causally influences the other one, or whether these two phenomena have a common cause. This analysis is the main focus of this volume. To get a good understanding of the causal inference, it is important to have models of economic phenomena which are as accurate as possible. Because of this need, this volume also contains papers that use non-traditional economic models, such as fuzzy models and models obtained by using neural networks and data mining techniques. It also contains papers that apply different econometric models to analyze real-life economic dependencies.

  14. Plant-insect interactions under bacterial influence: ecological implications and underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugio, Akiko; Dubreuil, Géraldine; Giron, David; Simon, Jean-Christophe

    2015-02-01

    Plants and insects have been co-existing for more than 400 million years, leading to intimate and complex relationships. Throughout their own evolutionary history, plants and insects have also established intricate and very diverse relationships with microbial associates. Studies in recent years have revealed plant- or insect-associated microbes to be instrumental in plant-insect interactions, with important implications for plant defences and plant utilization by insects. Microbial communities associated with plants are rich in diversity, and their structure greatly differs between below- and above-ground levels. Microbial communities associated with insect herbivores generally present a lower diversity and can reside in different body parts of their hosts including bacteriocytes, haemolymph, gut, and salivary glands. Acquisition of microbial communities by vertical or horizontal transmission and possible genetic exchanges through lateral transfer could strongly impact on the host insect or plant fitness by conferring adaptations to new habitats. Recent developments in sequencing technologies and molecular tools have dramatically enhanced opportunities to characterize the microbial diversity associated with plants and insects and have unveiled some of the mechanisms by which symbionts modulate plant-insect interactions. Here, we focus on the diversity and ecological consequences of bacterial communities associated with plants and herbivorous insects. We also highlight the known mechanisms by which these microbes interfere with plant-insect interactions. Revealing such mechanisms in model systems under controlled environments but also in more natural ecological settings will help us to understand the evolution of complex multitrophic interactions in which plants, herbivorous insects, and micro-organisms are inserted. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions

  15. Realistic physical origin of the quantum observable operator algebra in the frame of the causal stochastic interpretation of quantum mechanics: The relativistic spin-zero case

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cufaro-Petroni, N.; Dewdney, C.; Holland, P.; Kyprianidis, T.; Vigier, J.P.

    1985-01-01

    The deduction by Guerra and Marra of the usual quantum operator algebra from a canonical variable Hamiltonian treatment of Nelson's hydrodynamical stochastic description of real nonrelativistic Schroedinger waves is extended to the causal stochastic interpretation given by Guerra and Ruggiero and by Vigier of relativistic Klein-Gordon waves. A specific representation shows that the Poisson brackets for canonical hydrodynamical observables become ''averages'' of quantum observables in the given state. Stochastic quantization thus justifies the standard procedure of replacing the classical particle (or field) observables with operators according to the scheme p/sub μ/→-ihpartial/sub μ/ and L/sub munu/→-ih(x/sub μ/partial/sub ν/-x/sub ν/partial/sub μ/ )

  16. Rate-Agnostic (Causal) Structure Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plis, Sergey; Danks, David; Freeman, Cynthia; Calhoun, Vince

    2015-12-01

    Causal structure learning from time series data is a major scientific challenge. Extant algorithms assume that measurements occur sufficiently quickly; more precisely, they assume approximately equal system and measurement timescales. In many domains, however, measurements occur at a significantly slower rate than the underlying system changes, but the size of the timescale mismatch is often unknown. This paper develops three causal structure learning algorithms, each of which discovers all dynamic causal graphs that explain the observed measurement data, perhaps given undersampling. That is, these algorithms all learn causal structure in a "rate-agnostic" manner: they do not assume any particular relation between the measurement and system timescales. We apply these algorithms to data from simulations to gain insight into the challenge of undersampling.

  17. Perceptual causality in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlottmann, Anne; Allen, Deborah; Linderoth, Carina; Hesketh, Sarah

    2002-01-01

    Three experiments considered the development of perceptual causality in children from 3 to 9 years of age (N = 176 in total). Adults tend to see cause and effect even in schematic, two-dimensional motion events: Thus, if square A moves toward B, which moves upon contact, they report that A launches B--physical causality. If B moves before contact, adults report that B tries to escape from A--social or psychological causality. A brief pause between movements eliminates such impressions. Even infants in the first year of life are sensitive to causal structure in both contact and no-contact events, but previous research with talking-age children found poor verbal reports. The present experiments used a picture-based forced-choice task to reduce linguistic demands. Observers saw eight different animations involving squares A and B. Events varied in whether or not these agents made contact; whether or not there was a delay at the closest point; and whether they moved rigidly or with a rhythmic, nonrigid "caterpillar" motion. Participants of all ages assigned events with contact to the physical domain and events without contact to the psychological domain. In addition, participants of all ages chose causality more often for events without delay than with delay, but these events became more distinct over the preschool range. The manipulation of agent motion had only minor and inconsistent effects across studies, even though children of all ages considered only the nonrigid motion to be animal-like. These results agree with the view that perceptual causality is available early in development.

  18. Regression to Causality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bordacconi, Mats Joe; Larsen, Martin Vinæs

    2014-01-01

    Humans are fundamentally primed for making causal attributions based on correlations. This implies that researchers must be careful to present their results in a manner that inhibits unwarranted causal attribution. In this paper, we present the results of an experiment that suggests regression...... more likely. Our experiment drew on a sample of 235 university students from three different social science degree programs (political science, sociology and economics), all of whom had received substantial training in statistics. The subjects were asked to compare and evaluate the validity...

  19. Molecular Mechanics: The Method and Its Underlying Philosophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyd, Donald B.; Lipkowitz, Kenny B.

    1982-01-01

    Molecular mechanics is a nonquantum mechanical method for solving problems concerning molecular geometries and energy. Methodology based on: the principle of combining potential energy functions of all structural features of a particular molecule into a total force field; derivation of basic equations; and use of available computer programs is…

  20. Potential Mechanisms Underlying Centralized Pain and Emerging Therapeutic Interventions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivia C. Eller-Smith

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Centralized pain syndromes are associated with changes within the central nervous system that amplify peripheral input and/or generate the perception of pain in the absence of a noxious stimulus. Examples of idiopathic functional disorders that are often categorized as centralized pain syndromes include fibromyalgia, chronic pelvic pain syndromes, migraine, and temporomandibular disorder. Patients often suffer from widespread pain, associated with more than one specific syndrome, and report fatigue, mood and sleep disturbances, and poor quality of life. The high degree of symptom comorbidity and a lack of definitive underlying etiology make these syndromes notoriously difficult to treat. The main purpose of this review article is to discuss potential mechanisms of centrally-driven pain amplification and how they may contribute to increased comorbidity, poorer pain outcomes, and decreased quality of life in patients diagnosed with centralized pain syndromes, as well as discuss emerging non-pharmacological therapies that improve symptomology associated with these syndromes. Abnormal regulation and output of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis is commonly associated with centralized pain disorders. The HPA axis is the primary stress response system and its activation results in downstream production of cortisol and a dampening of the immune response. Patients with centralized pain syndromes often present with hyper- or hypocortisolism and evidence of altered downstream signaling from the HPA axis including increased Mast cell (MC infiltration and activation, which can lead to sensitization of nearby nociceptive afferents. Increased peripheral input via nociceptor activation can lead to “hyperalgesic priming” and/or “wind-up” and eventually to central sensitization through long term potentiation in the central nervous system. Other evidence of central modifications has been observed through brain imaging studies of functional

  1. [Study on main pharmacodynamics and underlying mechanisms of 999 Ganmaoling].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Qi-Hua; He, Rong; Peng, Bo; Ye, Zu-Guang; Li, Jian-Rong; Zhang, Yue-Fei; Dai, Zhi

    2016-04-01

    To observe synergistic effects of 999 Ganmaoling (GML) and its Chinese/Western materia medica (CMM and WMM) on pharmacodynamic action and to study underlying mechanisms, their anti-inflammatory, antipyretic effects were compared by assaying the increased capillary permeability induced by glacial acetic acid in mice, ear swelling induced by Xylene in mice, non-specific pleurisy induced by carrageenan in rats, and yeast induced fever in rats. Crystal violet (CV) and microbial activity (XTT) assay were used to evaluate the inhibition of GML and its CMM and WMM on KPN biofilm formation, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was applied for observing KPN biofilm morphology changes. The results showed that compared with control group, GML could reduce exudation amount of Evans-Blue and the degree of Ear swelling significantly, and CMM and WMM have no significant effects. The concentration of TNF-α and IL-1β of rat pleural effusion in GML, CMM and WMM group decreased significantly. The concentration of TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-8 in GML group, TNF-α, IL-8 in WMM group and IL-8 in CMM in rats serum decreased significantly. The body temperature in rats decreased significantly in GML and WMM group after 4-8 h of administration. CMM group showed no significant difference in rat body temperature compare with control. Compared with control group, GML (55-13.75 g•L⁻¹) could inhibit KPN biofilm formation and reduce number of viable cells in the KPN biofilm. CMM (45-22.5 g•L⁻¹) and WMM (10 g•L⁻¹) could also inhibit KPN biofilm formation and reduce number of viable cells (P<0.01). Result of SEM also showed that GML (55 g•L⁻¹) and its CMM (45 g•L⁻¹) and WMM (10 g•L⁻¹) could interfere the bacterial arrangement of KPN biofilm and extracellular matrix. GML and its CMM & WMM could inhibit the formation of KPN biofilm, CMM & WMM in GML showed synergism and complementation in inhibit KPN biofilm. Results showed that GML had obvious anti-inflammatory and

  2. Mechanisms and pharmacogenetic signals underlying thiazide diuretics blood pressure response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahin, Mohamed H; Johnson, Julie A

    2016-04-01

    Thiazide (TZD) diuretics are among the most commonly prescribed antihypertensives globally; however their chronic blood pressure (BP) lowering mechanism remains unclear. Herein we discuss the current evidence regarding specific mechanisms regulating the antihypertensive effects of TZDs, suggesting that TZDs act via multiple complex and interacting mechanisms, including natriuresis with short term use and direct vasodilatory effects chronically. Additionally, we review pharmacogenomics signals that have been associated with TZDs BP-response in several cohorts (i.e. NEDD4L, PRKCA, EDNRA-GNAS, and YEATS4) and discuss how these genes might be related to TZD BP-response mechanism. Understanding the association between these genes and TZD BP mechanism might facilitate the development of new drugs and therapeutic approaches based on a deeper understanding of the determinants of BP-response. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  3. A framework for assessing frequency domain causality in physiological time series with instantaneous effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faes, Luca; Erla, Silvia; Porta, Alberto; Nollo, Giandomenico

    2013-08-28

    We present an approach for the quantification of directional relations in multiple time series exhibiting significant zero-lag interactions. To overcome the limitations of the traditional multivariate autoregressive (MVAR) modelling of multiple series, we introduce an extended MVAR (eMVAR) framework allowing either exclusive consideration of time-lagged effects according to the classic notion of Granger causality, or consideration of combined instantaneous and lagged effects according to an extended causality definition. The spectral representation of the eMVAR model is exploited to derive novel frequency domain causality measures that generalize to the case of instantaneous effects the known directed coherence (DC) and partial DC measures. The new measures are illustrated in theoretical examples showing that they reduce to the known measures in the absence of instantaneous causality, and describe peculiar aspects of directional interaction among multiple series when instantaneous causality is non-negligible. Then, the issue of estimating eMVAR models from time-series data is faced, proposing two approaches for model identification and discussing problems related to the underlying model assumptions. Finally, applications of the framework on cardiovascular variability series and multichannel EEG recordings are presented, showing how it allows one to highlight patterns of frequency domain causality consistent with well-interpretable physiological interaction mechanisms.

  4. Time and Causality in the Economic Process – a Critical Approach Based on Consistency Criteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina TĂNĂSESCU

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Our paper proposes a critical analysis based on criteria of consistency of the fundamental concepts underlying the comprehensive description of economic process, namely: time, context and causality. Issues of such action taken by us arise from the existence of the fact that the emergence of new paradigms, amid an economic complexity, should include elements of theoretical, instrumental and methodological nature. Moreover, dominant economic science, at this time (positivist, is subject to an epistemological imperialism exercised by Newtonian mechanics, without one's own epistemology. Regarding the underlying causality explaining the economic process, we find that, yet at this time, it is a singular and efficient one (in the Aristotelian sense, but not a teleological one, so we wonder whether the final causality (purpose form may better explain the economic process and his completeness, and in this sense, the shaping of new paradigms based on premises other than those already existed, in understanding the economic process.

  5. Causality and Free Will

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hvorecký, Juraj

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 19, Supp.2 (2012), s. 64-69 ISSN 1335-0668 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP401/12/0833 Institutional support: RVO:67985955 Keywords : conciousness * free will * determinism * causality Subject RIV: AA - Philosophy ; Religion

  6. Mechanical response of collagen molecule under hydrostatic compression

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saini, Karanvir; Kumar, Navin

    2015-01-01

    Proteins like collagen are the basic building blocks of various body tissues (soft and hard). Collagen molecules find their presence in the skeletal system of the body where they bear mechanical loads from different directions, either individually or along with hydroxy-apatite crystals. Therefore, it is very important to understand the mechanical behavior of the collagen molecule which is subjected to multi-axial state of loading. The estimation of strains of collagen molecule along different directions resulting from the changes in hydrostatic pressure magnitude, can provide us new insights into its mechanical behavior. In the present work, full atomistic simulations have been used to study global (volumetric) as well as local (along different directions) mechanical properties of the hydrated collagen molecule which is subjected to different hydrostatic pressure magnitudes. To estimate the local mechanical properties, the strains of collagen molecule along its longitudinal and transverse directions have been acquired at different hydrostatic pressure magnitudes. In spite of non-homogeneous distribution of atoms within the collagen molecule, the calculated values of local mechanical properties have been found to carry the same order of magnitude along the longitudinal and transverse directions. It has been demonstrated that the values of global mechanical properties like compressibility, bulk modulus, etc. as well as local mechanical properties like linear compressibility, linear elastic modulus, etc. are functions of magnitudes of applied hydrostatic pressures. The mechanical characteristics of collagen molecule based on the atomistic model have also been compared with that of the continuum model in the present work. The comparison showed up orthotropic material behavior for the collagen molecule. The information on collagen molecule provided in the present study can be very helpful in designing the future bio-materials.

  7. Mechanical Characterization of Anion Exchange Membranes Under Controlled Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-11

    supporting textiles and test the mechanical properties. Even though their films were only 10 microns, the SER fixture was used by applying double stick tape...aramid and stainless steel. The authors conclude that supporting textile has a large impact on mechanical properties due to the difference in...Elongation) are depicted. 2.2 Conductivity Ionic conductivity was measured by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy using a four- electrode in-plane

  8. Features wear nodes mechanization wing aircraft operating under dynamic loads

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    А.М. Хімко

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available  The conducted researches of titanic alloy ВТ-22 at dynamic loading with cycled sliding and dynamic loading in conditions of rolling with slipping. It is established that roller jamming in the carriage increases wear of rod of mechanization of a wing to twenty times. The optimum covering for strengthening wearied sites and restoration of working surfaces of wing’s mechanization rod is defined.

  9. Synthetic oligorotaxanes exert high forces when folding under mechanical load

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sluysmans, Damien; Hubert, Sandrine; Bruns, Carson J.; Zhu, Zhixue; Stoddart, J. Fraser; Duwez, Anne-Sophie

    2018-01-01

    Folding is a ubiquitous process that nature uses to control the conformations of its molecular machines, allowing them to perform chemical and mechanical tasks. Over the years, chemists have synthesized foldamers that adopt well-defined and stable folded architectures, mimicking the control expressed by natural systems1,2. Mechanically interlocked molecules, such as rotaxanes and catenanes, are prototypical molecular machines that enable the controlled movement and positioning of their component parts3-5. Recently, combining the exquisite complexity of these two classes of molecules, donor-acceptor oligorotaxane foldamers have been synthesized, in which interactions between the mechanically interlocked component parts dictate the single-molecule assembly into a folded secondary structure6-8. Here we report on the mechanochemical properties of these molecules. We use atomic force microscopy-based single-molecule force spectroscopy to mechanically unfold oligorotaxanes, made of oligomeric dumbbells incorporating 1,5-dioxynaphthalene units encircled by cyclobis(paraquat-p-phenylene) rings. Real-time capture of fluctuations between unfolded and folded states reveals that the molecules exert forces of up to 50 pN against a mechanical load of up to 150 pN, and displays transition times of less than 10 μs. While the folding is at least as fast as that observed in proteins, it is remarkably more robust, thanks to the mechanically interlocked structure. Our results show that synthetic oligorotaxanes have the potential to exceed the performance of natural folding proteins.

  10. Kant on causal laws and powers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henschen, Tobias

    2014-12-01

    The aim of the paper is threefold. Its first aim is to defend Eric Watkins's claim that for Kant, a cause is not an event but a causal power: a power that is borne by a substance, and that, when active, brings about its effect, i.e. a change of the states of another substance, by generating a continuous flow of intermediate states of that substance. The second aim of the paper is to argue against Watkins that the Kantian concept of causal power is not the pre-critical concept of real ground but the category of causality, and that Kant holds with Hume that causal laws cannot be inferred non-inductively (that he accordingly has no intention to show in the Second analogy or elsewhere that events fall under causal laws). The third aim of the paper is to compare the Kantian position on causality with central tenets of contemporary powers ontology: it argues that unlike the variants endorsed by contemporary powers theorists, the Kantian variants of these tenets are resistant to objections that neo-Humeans raise to these tenets.

  11. In vitro Antagonistic Mechanisms of Trichoderma spp. and Talaromyces flavus to Control Gaeumannomyces graminis var. tritici the Causal Agent of Wheat Take-all Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seddighe Mohammadi

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Wheat take-all disease caused by Gaeumannomyces graminis var. tritici has recently been detected in different regions of Iran. With respect to biocontrol effect of Trichoderma spp. on many pathogenic fungi, seven isolates of Trichoderma and four isolates of Talaromyces were in vitro evaluated in terms of their biological control against the disease causal agent. In dual culture test the five isolates showed efficient competition for colonization against pathogenic fungus and the highest percentages of inhibition belonging to Talaromyces flavus 60 and Talaromyces flavus 136 were 59.52 and 57.61%, respectively. Microscopic investigations showed that in regions where antagonistic isolates and Gaeumannomyces graminis var. tritici coincide, hyphal contact, penetration and fragmentation of Gaeumannomyces graminis var. tritici were observed. Investigating the effect of volatile and non-volatile compounds at 10 ml concentration showed that the highest inhibition percentage on mycelium growth of the pathogen caused by T. harzianum (44.76% and T. longibrachiatum (52.38% respectively.

  12. Palliative medicine specialists' causal explanations for depression in the palliative care setting: a qualitative in-depth interview study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Felicity; Crawford, Gregory B; Chur-Hansen, Anna

    2016-06-01

    Medical practitioners have different causal explanations for depression, and may have greater difficulty in explaining causality of depression in the palliative care setting. The objective of this study was to investigate and describe the causal explanations of depression in the palliative care setting, from the perspective of palliative medicine specialists. Palliative medicine specialists practising in Australia were recruited and purposively sampled. Individual semistructured, in-depth interviews were conducted to explore their explanatory models of depression, including a focus on causal explanations. Nine participants were interviewed to reach data saturation. Interview transcripts were analysed for themes. Six themes for causal explanations of depression were identified: (1) Depression is inexplicable; (2) Biological explanations-primarily neurotransmitter depletion; (3) Psychological explanations-including reaction to circumstances, inability to accept illness and dying, diminished self, and coping mechanisms; (4) Social explanations-including inadequate social support, and contribution from modern medicine and societal norms; (5) Interrelationships between causal factors-mainly multifactoriality; (6) Different explanation for de novo and pre-existing depressions. Participants also articulated a link between causal explanations and clinical interventions. Palliative medicine specialists hold causal explanations of depression that align with the biopsychosocial and vulnerability-stress models. They use multiple individual explanations with diverse theoretical underpinnings, and largely view depression as multifactorial in causality. Given that causal explanations are linked to clinical interventions, these findings have implications for clinical practice and medical education. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/

  13. Mechanism and kinetics of mineral weathering under acid conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Anbeek, C.

    1994-01-01

    This study deals with the relationships between crystal structure, grain diameter, surface morphology and dissolution kinetics for feldspar and quartz under acid conditions.

    Intensively ground samples from large, naturally weathered mineral fragments are frequently used in

  14. Performance of multifilamentary Nb3Sn under mechanical load

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Easton, D.S.; Schwall, R.E.

    1976-01-01

    The critical current of a commercial multifilamentary Nb 3 Sn conductor has been measured under the application of uniaxial tension at 4.2 K and following bending at room temperature. Significant reductions in J/subc/ are observed under uniaxial loading. Results are presented for a monolithic conductor manufactured by the bronze diffusion technique and for cable conductors formed by the tin-dip technique

  15. Decentralized control mechanism underlying interlimb coordination of millipedes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kano, Takeshi; Sakai, Kazuhiko; Yasui, Kotaro; Owaki, Dai; Ishiguro, Akio

    2017-04-04

    Legged animals exhibit adaptive and resilient locomotion through interlimb coordination. The long-term goal of this study is to clarify the relationship between the number of legs and the inherent decentralized control mechanism for interlimb coordination. As a preliminary step, the study focuses on millipedes as they represent the species with the greatest number of legs among various animal species. A decentralized control mechanism involving local force feedback was proposed based on the qualitative findings of behavioural experiments in which responses to the removal of part of the terrain and leg amputation were observed. The proposed mechanism was implemented in a developed millipede-like robot to demonstrate that the robot can adapt to the removal of the part of the terrain and leg amputation in a manner similar to that in behavioural experiments.

  16. Advanced waterflooding in chalk reservoirs: Understanding of underlying mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zahid, Adeel; Sandersen, Sara Bülow; Stenby, Erling Halfdan

    2011-01-01

    Over the last decade, a number of studies have shown SO42−, Ca2+ and Mg2+ to be potential determining ions, which may be added to the injected brine for improving oil recovery during waterflooding in chalk reservoirs. However the understanding of the mechanism leading to an increase in oil recove...... of a microemulsion phase could be the possible reasons for the observed increase in oil recovery with sulfate ions at high temperature in chalk reservoirs besides the mechanism of the rock wettability alteration, which has been reported in most previous studies.......Over the last decade, a number of studies have shown SO42−, Ca2+ and Mg2+ to be potential determining ions, which may be added to the injected brine for improving oil recovery during waterflooding in chalk reservoirs. However the understanding of the mechanism leading to an increase in oil recovery...

  17. Epigenetic mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of neurogenetic diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Irfan A; Mehler, Mark F

    2014-10-01

    There have been considerable advances in uncovering the complex genetic mechanisms that underlie nervous system disease pathogenesis, particularly with the advent of exome and whole genome sequencing techniques. The emerging field of epigenetics is also providing further insights into these mechanisms. Here, we discuss our understanding of the interplay that exists between genetic and epigenetic mechanisms in these disorders, highlighting the nascent field of epigenetic epidemiology-which focuses on analyzing relationships between the epigenome and environmental exposures, development and aging, other health-related phenotypes, and disease states-and next-generation research tools (i.e., those leveraging synthetic and chemical biology and optogenetics) for examining precisely how epigenetic modifications at specific genomic sites affect disease processes.

  18. A review of mechanisms underlying anticarcinogenicity by brassica vegetables

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhoeven, D.T.H.; Verhagen, H.; Goldbohm, R.A.; Brandt, P.A. van den; Poppel, G. van

    1997-01-01

    The mechanisms by which brassica vegetables might decrease the risk of cancer are reviewed in this paper. Brassicas, including all types of cabbages, broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts, may be protective against cancer due to their relatively high glucosinolate content. Glucosinolates are

  19. Peer influence: neural mechanisms underlying in-group conformity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stallen, M.; Smidts, A.; Sanfey, A.G.

    2013-01-01

    People often conform to the behavior of others with whom they identify. However, it is unclear what fundamental mechanisms underlie this type of conformity. Here, we investigate the processes mediating in-group conformity by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Participants completed

  20. Peer influence: Neural mechanisms underlying in-group conformity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M. Stallen (Mirre); A. Smidts (Ale); A.G. Sanfey (Alan)

    2013-01-01

    textabstractPeople often conform to the behavior of others with whom they identify. However, it is unclear what fundamental mechanisms underlie this type of conformity. Here, we investigate the processes mediating in-group conformity by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).

  1. Survival under stress: molecular mechanisms of metabolic rate ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Studies in my laboratory are analysing the molecular mechanisms and regulatory events that underlie transitions to and from hypometabolic states In systems including anoxia-tolerant turtles and molluscs, estivating snails and toads, hibernating small mammals, and freeze tolerant frogs and insects. Our newest research ...

  2. Underlying mechanisms of transient luminous events: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. Surkov

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Transient luminous events (TLEs occasionally observed above a strong thunderstorm system have been the subject of a great deal of research during recent years. The main goal of this review is to introduce readers to recent theories of electrodynamics processes associated with TLEs. We examine the simplest versions of these theories in order to make their physics as transparent as possible. The study is begun with the conventional mechanism for air breakdown at stratospheric and mesospheric altitudes. An electron impact ionization and dissociative attachment to neutrals are discussed. A streamer size and mobility of electrons as a function of altitude in the atmosphere are estimated on the basis of similarity law. An alternative mechanism of air breakdown, runaway electron mechanism, is discussed. In this section we focus on a runaway breakdown field, characteristic length to increase avalanche of runaway electrons and on the role played by fast seed electrons in generation of the runaway breakdown. An effect of thunderclouds charge distribution on initiation of blue jets and gigantic jets is examined. A model in which the blue jet is treated as upward-propagating positive leader with a streamer zone/corona on the top is discussed. Sprite models based on streamer-like mechanism of air breakdown in the presence of atmospheric conductivity are reviewed. To analyze conditions for sprite generation, thunderstorm electric field arising just after positive cloud-to-ground stroke is compared with the thresholds for propagation of positively/negatively charged streamers and with runway breakdown. Our own estimate of tendril's length at the bottom of sprite is obtained to demonstrate that the runaway breakdown can trigger the streamer formation. In conclusion we discuss physical mechanisms of VLF (very low frequency and ELF (extremely low frequency phenomena associated with sprites.

  3. Mechanisms underlying social inequality in post-menopausal breast cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hvidtfeldt, Ulla Arthur

    2014-10-01

    This thesis is based on studies conducted in the period 2010-2014 at Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen and at Department of Epidemiology and Population Health, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York. The results are presented in three scientific papers and a synopsis. The main objective of the thesis was to determine mechanisms underlying social inequality (defined by educational level) in postmenopausal breast cancer (BC) by addressing mediating effects through hormone therapy (HT) use, BMI, lifestyle and reproductive factors. The results of previous studies suggest that the higher risk of postmenopausal BC among women of high socioeconomic position (SEP) may be explained by reproductive factors and health behaviors. Women of higher SEP generally have fewer children and give birth at older ages than women of low SEP, and these factors have been found to affect the risk of BC - probably through altered hormone levels. Adverse effects on BC risk have also been documented for modifiable health behaviors that may affect hormone levels, such as alcohol consumption, high BMI, physical inactivity, and HT use. Alcohol consumption and HT use are likewise more common among women of higher SEP. The analyses were based on the Social Inequality in Cancer (SIC) cohort and a subsample of the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study (WHI-OS). The SIC cohort was derived by pooling 6 individual studies from the Copenhagen area including 33,562 women (1,733 BC cases) aged 50-70 years at baseline. The subsample of WHI-OS consisted of two case-cohort studies with measurements of endogenous estradiol (N = 1,601) and insulin (N = 791). Assessment of mediation often relies on comparing multiplicative models with and without the potential mediator. Such approaches provide potentially biased results, because they do not account for mediator-outcome confounding, exposure-dependent mediator-outcome confounding, exposure-mediator interaction and interactions

  4. Operator ordering and causality

    OpenAIRE

    Plimak, L. I.; Stenholm, S. T.

    2011-01-01

    It is shown that causality violations [M. de Haan, Physica 132A, 375, 397 (1985)], emerging when the conventional definition of the time-normal operator ordering [P.L.Kelley and W.H.Kleiner, Phys.Rev. 136, A316 (1964)] is taken outside the rotating wave approximation, disappear when the amended definition [L.P. and S.S., Annals of Physics, 323, 1989 (2008)] of this ordering is used.

  5. Mechanical response of human female breast skin under uniaxial stretching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumaraswamy, N; Khatam, Hamed; Reece, Gregory P; Fingeret, Michelle C; Markey, Mia K; Ravi-Chandar, Krishnaswamy

    2017-10-01

    Skin is a complex material covering the entire surface of the human body. Studying the mechanical properties of skin to calibrate a constitutive model is of great importance to many applications such as plastic or cosmetic surgery and treatment of skin-based diseases like decubitus ulcers. The main objective of the present study was to identify and calibrate an appropriate material constitutive model for skin and establish certain universal properties that are independent of patient-specific variability. We performed uniaxial tests performed on breast skin specimens freshly harvested during mastectomy. Two different constitutive models - one phenomenological and another microstructurally inspired - were used to interpret the mechanical responses observed in the experiments. Remarkably, we found that the model parameters that characterize dependence on previous maximum stretch (or preconditioning) exhibited specimen-independent universal behavior. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Peer influence: Neural mechanisms underlying in-group conformity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mirre eStallen

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available People often conform to the behavior of others with whom they identify. However, it is unclear what fundamental mechanisms underlie this type of conformity. Here, we investigate the processes mediating in-group conformity by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. Participants completed a perceptual decision-making task while undergoing fMRI, during which they were exposed to the judgments of both in-group and out-group members. Our data suggest that conformity to the in-group is mediated by both positive affect as well as the cognitive capacity of perspective taking. Examining the processes that drive in-group conformity by utilizing a basic decision-making paradigm combined with neuroimaging methods provides important insights into the potential mechanisms of conformity. These results may provide an integral step in developing more effective campaigns using group conformity as a tool for behavioral change.

  7. Peer influence: neural mechanisms underlying in-group conformity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stallen, Mirre; Smidts, Ale; Sanfey, Alan G

    2013-01-01

    People often conform to the behavior of others with whom they identify. However, it is unclear what fundamental mechanisms underlie this type of conformity. Here, we investigate the processes mediating in-group conformity by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Participants completed a perceptual decision-making task while undergoing fMRI, during which they were exposed to the judgments of both in-group and out-group members. Our data suggest that conformity to the in-group is mediated by both positive affect as well as the cognitive capacity of perspective taking. Examining the processes that drive in-group conformity by utilizing a basic decision-making paradigm combined with neuroimaging methods provides important insights into the potential mechanisms of conformity. These results may provide an integral step in developing more effective campaigns using group conformity as a tool for behavioral change.

  8. Molecular Mechanism Underlying Lymphatic Metastasis in Pancreatic Cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiwen Xiao

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available As the most challenging human malignancies, pancreatic cancer is characterized by its insidious symptoms, low rate of surgical resection, high risk of local invasion, metastasis and recurrence, and overall dismal prognosis. Lymphatic metastasis, above all, is recognized as an early adverse event in progression of pancreatic cancer and has been described to be an independent poor prognostic factor. It should be noted that the occurrence of lymphatic metastasis is not a casual or stochastic but an ineluctable and designed event. Increasing evidences suggest that metastasis-initiating cells (MICs and the microenvironments may act as a double-reed style in this crime. However, the exact mechanisms on how they function synergistically for this dismal clinical course remain largely elusive. Therefore, a better understanding of its molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in pancreatic lymphatic metastasis is urgently required. In this review, we will summarize the latest advances on lymphatic metastasis in pancreatic cancer.

  9. Mental imagery in music performance: underlying mechanisms and potential benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Peter E

    2012-04-01

    This paper examines the role of mental imagery in music performance. Self-reports by musicians, and various other sources of anecdotal evidence, suggest that covert auditory, motor, and/or visual imagery facilitate multiple aspects of music performance. The cognitive and motor mechanisms that underlie such imagery include working memory, action simulation, and internal models. Together these mechanisms support the generation of anticipatory images that enable thorough action planning and movement execution that is characterized by efficiency, temporal precision, and biomechanical economy. In ensemble performance, anticipatory imagery may facilitate interpersonal coordination by enhancing online predictions about others' action timing. Overlap in brain regions subserving auditory imagery and temporal prediction is consistent with this view. It is concluded that individual differences in anticipatory imagery may be a source of variation in expressive performance excellence and the quality of ensemble cohesion. Engaging in effortful musical imagery is therefore justified when artistic perfection is the goal. © 2012 New York Academy of Sciences.

  10. Neural mechanisms underlying context-dependent shifts in risk preferences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Losecaat Vermeer, A.B.; Boksem, M.A.S.; Sanfey, A.G.

    2014-01-01

    Studies of risky decision-making have demonstrated that humans typically prefer risky options after incurring a financial loss, while generally preferring safer options after a monetary gain. Here, we examined the neural processes underlying these inconsistent risk preferences by investigating the

  11. [Mechanisms underlying glucocorticoid resistance in chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Y Y; Lou, H F; Wang, C S; Zhang, L

    2018-02-07

    Chronic rhinosinusitis with nasal polyps (CRSwNP) is a chronic inflammatory disease that occurs in the nasal and sinus mucosa, which is a common disease in otorhinolaryngology. At present, CRSwNP can be effectively treated by glucocorticoids (GC). GC binds to GC receptors in the nasal mucosa, affects the expression of inflammatory genes, inhibits the activation and action of eosinophils, T cell-associated inflammatory responses in nasal polyps, as well as tissue remodeling. However, there are some patients fall reponse to GC, so called GC resistance. The study suggests that the possible mechanism of CRSwNP GC resistance is mainly related to GC receptor abnormal, the role of cytokines and transcription factors, such as Th cells and IL-8. In addition, MAPK-related kinases and histone deacetylase in the GC signaling pathway also play important roles in the GC resistance process. This paper reviews the mechanism of GC treatment of CRSwNP, the mechanism of GC resistance and alternative treatment of GC.

  12. The Survival Advantage: Underlying Mechanisms and Extant Limitations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie A. Kazanas

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Recently, researchers have begun to investigate the function of memory in our evolutionary history. According to Nairne and colleagues (e.g., Nairne, Pandeirada, and Thompson, 2008; Nairne, Thompson, and Pandeirada, 2007, the best mnemonic strategy for learning lists of unrelated words may be one that addresses the same problems that our Pleistocene ancestors faced: fitness-relevant problems including securing food and water, as well as protecting themselves from predators. Survival processing has been shown to promote better recall and recognition memory than many well-known mnemonic strategies (e.g., pleasantness ratings, imagery, generation, etc.. However, the survival advantage does not extend to all types of stimuli and tasks. The current review presents research that has replicated Nairne et al.'s (2007 original findings, in addition to the research designs that fail to replicate the survival advantage. In other words, there are specific manipulations in which survival processing does not appear to benefit memory any more than other strategies. Potential mechanisms for the survival advantage are described, with an emphasis on those that are the most plausible. These proximate mechanisms outline the memory processes that may contribute to the advantage, although the ultimate mechanism may be the congruity between the survival scenario and Pleistocene problem-solving.

  13. Passive and active response of bacteria under mechanical compression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garces, Renata; Miller, Samantha; Schmidt, Christoph F.; Byophysics Team; Institute of Medical Sciences Collaboration

    Bacteria display simple but fascinating cellular structures and geometries. Their shapes are the result of the interplay between osmotic pressure and cell wall construction. Typically, bacteria maintain a high difference of osmotic pressure (on the order of 1 atm) to the environment. This pressure difference (turgor pressure) is supported by the cell envelope, a composite of lipid membranes and a rigid cell wall. The response of the cell envelope to mechanical perturbations such as geometrical confinements is important for the cells survival. Another key property of bacteria is the ability to regulate turgor pressure after abrupt changes of external osmotic conditions. This response relies on the activity of mechanosensitive (MS) channels: membrane proteins that release solutes in response to excessive stress in the cell envelope. We here present experimental data on the mechanical response of the cell envelope and on turgor regulation of bacteria subjected to compressive forces. We indent living cells with micron-sized beads attached to the cantilever of an atomic force microscope (AFM). This approach ensures global deformation of the cell. We show that such mechanical loading is sufficient to gate mechanosensitive channels in isosmotic conditions.

  14. Psychiatric comorbidity and causal disease models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Loo, Hanna M; Romeijn, Jan-Willem; de Jonge, Peter; Schoevers, Robert A

    2013-12-01

    In psychiatry, comorbidity is the rule rather than the exception. Up to 45% of all patients are classified as having more than one psychiatric disorder. These high rates of comorbidity have led to a debate concerning the interpretation of this phenomenon. Some authors emphasize the problematic character of the high rates of comorbidity because they indicate absent zones of rarities. Others consider comorbid conditions to be a validator for a particular reclassification of diseases. In this paper we will show that those at first sight contrasting interpretations of comorbidity are based on similar assumptions about disease models. The underlying ideas are that firstly high rates of comorbidity are the result of the absence of causally defined diseases in psychiatry, and second that causal disease models are preferable to non-causal disease models. We will argue that there are good reasons to seek after causal understanding of psychiatric disorders, but that causal disease models will not rule out high rates of comorbidity--neither in psychiatry, nor in medicine in general. By bringing to the fore these underlying assumptions, we hope to clear the ground for a different understanding of comorbidity, and of models for psychiatric diseases. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Causal and Teleological Explanations in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yip, Cheng-Wai

    2009-01-01

    A causal explanation in biology focuses on the mechanism by which a biological process is brought about, whereas a teleological explanation considers the end result, in the context of the survival of the organism, as a reason for certain biological processes or structures. There is a tendency among students to offer a teleological explanation…

  16. Phosphorene under strain:electronic, mechanical and piezoelectric responses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drissi, L. B.; Sadki, S.; Sadki, K.

    2018-01-01

    Structural, electronic, elastic and piezoelectric properties of pure phosphorene under in-plane strain are investigated using first-principles calculations based on density functional theory. The two critical yielding points are determined along armchair and zigzag directions. It is shown that the buckling, the band gap and the charge transfer can be controlled under strains. A semiconductor to metallic transition is observed in metastable region. Polar plots of Young's modulus, Poisson ratio, sound velocities and Debye temperature exhibit evident anisotropic feature of phosphorene and indicate auxetic behavior for some angles θ. Our calculations show also that phosphorene has both in-plane and out-of-plane piezoelectric responses comparable to known 2D materials. The findings of this work reveal the great potential of pure phosphorene in nanomechanical applications.

  17. The Comparison of Neuro Behavioral Activity Mechanisms between Substance Abuse Sufferers under Maintenance Treatment and Non-Sufferers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H Kazemi

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Objective: The current study aimed at comparing preventive behavioral mechanisms behavioral tendencies, and the clash between drug users under maintenance treatmentandnon-users. Method: It was a causal-comparative study. All addicts of Esfahan city who had referred to one of the drug quitting centers constituted the study population. The selected sample consisted of 50drug users under maintenance treatment and 50non-users who were selected by convenience sampling. Gray- Wilson Personality Questionnaire was used for data collection purposes. Findings: The results showed that there was a significant difference between the two groups in terms of BAS and FFS scales while the difference between the two groups in terms of BIS scale was not reported to be significant. As well, there was a significant difference between the two groups in terms of approach, passive avoidance, fight, and silence. Conclusion: Investigating the neural/behavioral foundations within the range of substance abuse disorders indicates a difference between this group and those without the disorder, and it can further our understanding of the neural foundations of these disorders.

  18. Electronic, mechanical and dielectric properties of silicane under tensile strain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jamdagni, Pooja, E-mail: j.poojaa1228@gmail.com; Sharma, Munish; Ahluwalia, P. K. [Physics Department, Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India 171005 (India); Kumar, Ashok [Physics Department, Panjab University, Chandigarh, India, 160014 (India); Thakur, Anil [Physics Department, Govt. Collage Solan, Himachal Pradesh, India,173212 (India)

    2015-05-15

    The electronic, mechanical and dielectric properties of fully hydrogenated silicene i.e. silicane in stable configuration are studied by means of density functional theory based calculations. The band gap of silicane monolayer can be flexibly reduced to zero when subjected to bi-axial tensile strain, leading to semi-conducting to metallic transition, whereas the static dielectric constant for in-plane polarization increases monotonically with increasing strain. Also the EEL function show the red shift in resonance peak with tensile strain. Our results offer useful insight for the application of silicane monolayer in nano-optical and electronics devices.

  19. Electronic, mechanical and dielectric properties of silicane under tensile strain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jamdagni, Pooja; Sharma, Munish; Ahluwalia, P. K.; Kumar, Ashok; Thakur, Anil

    2015-01-01

    The electronic, mechanical and dielectric properties of fully hydrogenated silicene i.e. silicane in stable configuration are studied by means of density functional theory based calculations. The band gap of silicane monolayer can be flexibly reduced to zero when subjected to bi-axial tensile strain, leading to semi-conducting to metallic transition, whereas the static dielectric constant for in-plane polarization increases monotonically with increasing strain. Also the EEL function show the red shift in resonance peak with tensile strain. Our results offer useful insight for the application of silicane monolayer in nano-optical and electronics devices

  20. Studies on Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 3

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Line Vildbrad

    The polyglutamine (polyQ) disorders comprise nine diseases characterized by an expanded polyQ tract within the respective proteins. These disorders are rare but include the well-known Huntington’s disease, and several spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs). The diseases usually strike midlife and progress....... Even though a range of mechanisms contributing to polyQ diseases have been uncovered, there is still no treatment available. One of the more common polyQ diseases is SCA3, which is caused by a polyQ expansion in the ataxin-3 protein that normally functions as a deubiquitinating enzyme involved...

  1. Intelligent diagnosis of jaundice with dynamic uncertain causality graph model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Shao-Rui; Geng, Shi-Chao; Fan, Lin-Xiao; Chen, Jia-Jia; Zhang, Qin; Li, Lan-Juan

    2017-05-01

    Jaundice is a common and complex clinical symptom potentially occurring in hepatology, general surgery, pediatrics, infectious diseases, gynecology, and obstetrics, and it is fairly difficult to distinguish the cause of jaundice in clinical practice, especially for general practitioners in less developed regions. With collaboration between physicians and artificial intelligence engineers, a comprehensive knowledge base relevant to jaundice was created based on demographic information, symptoms, physical signs, laboratory tests, imaging diagnosis, medical histories, and risk factors. Then a diagnostic modeling and reasoning system using the dynamic uncertain causality graph was proposed. A modularized modeling scheme was presented to reduce the complexity of model construction, providing multiple perspectives and arbitrary granularity for disease causality representations. A "chaining" inference algorithm and weighted logic operation mechanism were employed to guarantee the exactness and efficiency of diagnostic reasoning under situations of incomplete and uncertain information. Moreover, the causal interactions among diseases and symptoms intuitively demonstrated the reasoning process in a graphical manner. Verification was performed using 203 randomly pooled clinical cases, and the accuracy was 99.01% and 84.73%, respectively, with or without laboratory tests in the model. The solutions were more explicable and convincing than common methods such as Bayesian Networks, further increasing the objectivity of clinical decision-making. The promising results indicated that our model could be potentially used in intelligent diagnosis and help decrease public health expenditure.

  2. Intelligent diagnosis of jaundice with dynamic uncertain causality graph model*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Shao-rui; Geng, Shi-chao; Fan, Lin-xiao; Chen, Jia-jia; Zhang, Qin; Li, Lan-juan

    2017-01-01

    Jaundice is a common and complex clinical symptom potentially occurring in hepatology, general surgery, pediatrics, infectious diseases, gynecology, and obstetrics, and it is fairly difficult to distinguish the cause of jaundice in clinical practice, especially for general practitioners in less developed regions. With collaboration between physicians and artificial intelligence engineers, a comprehensive knowledge base relevant to jaundice was created based on demographic information, symptoms, physical signs, laboratory tests, imaging diagnosis, medical histories, and risk factors. Then a diagnostic modeling and reasoning system using the dynamic uncertain causality graph was proposed. A modularized modeling scheme was presented to reduce the complexity of model construction, providing multiple perspectives and arbitrary granularity for disease causality representations. A “chaining” inference algorithm and weighted logic operation mechanism were employed to guarantee the exactness and efficiency of diagnostic reasoning under situations of incomplete and uncertain information. Moreover, the causal interactions among diseases and symptoms intuitively demonstrated the reasoning process in a graphical manner. Verification was performed using 203 randomly pooled clinical cases, and the accuracy was 99.01% and 84.73%, respectively, with or without laboratory tests in the model. The solutions were more explicable and convincing than common methods such as Bayesian Networks, further increasing the objectivity of clinical decision-making. The promising results indicated that our model could be potentially used in intelligent diagnosis and help decrease public health expenditure. PMID:28471111

  3. Tachyon kinematics and causality: A systematic, thorough analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recami, E.

    1985-01-01

    The chronological order of the events along a space-like path is not invariant under Lorentz transformations, as wellknown. This led to an early conviction that tachyons would give rise to causal anomalies. A relativistic version of the Stuckelberg-Feynman 'switching procedure' (SWP) has been invoked as the suitable tool to eliminate those anomalies. The application of the 'SWP' does eliminate the motions backwards in time, but interchanges the roles of source and detector. This fact triggered the proposal of a host of causal 'paradoxes'. Till now, however, it has not been recognized that such paradoxes can be sensibly discussed (and completely solved, at least 'in microphysics') only after having properly developed the tachyon relativistic mechanics. It is shown how to apply the 'SWP', both in the case of ordinary Special Relativity, and in the case with tachyons. Then, the kinematics of the tachyon-exchange between two (ordinary) bodies is carrefully exploited. Being finally able to tackle the tachyon-causality problem, the paradoxes are sucessively solved: (i) by Tolman-Regge; (ii) by Pirani; (iii) by Edmonds; (iv) by Bell. At last, a further new paradox associated with the transmission of signals by modulated tachyon beams is discussed. (Author) [pt

  4. Ethanol Neurotoxicity in the Developing Cerebellum: Underlying Mechanisms and Implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ambrish Kumar

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Ethanol is the main constituent of alcoholic beverages that exerts toxicity to neuronal development. Ethanol affects synaptogenesis and prevents proper brain development. In humans, synaptogenesis takes place during the third trimester of pregnancy, and in rodents this period corresponds to the initial few weeks of postnatal development. In this period neuronal maturation and differentiation begin and neuronal cells start migrating to their ultimate destinations. Although the neuronal development of all areas of the brain is affected, the cerebellum and cerebellar neurons are more susceptible to the damaging effects of ethanol. Ethanol’s harmful effects include neuronal cell death, impaired differentiation, reduction of neuronal numbers, and weakening of neuronal plasticity. Neuronal development requires many hormones and growth factors such as retinoic acid, nerve growth factors, and cytokines. These factors regulate development and differentiation of neurons by acting through various receptors and their signaling pathways. Ethanol exposure during development impairs neuronal signaling mechanisms mediated by the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA receptors, the retinoic acid receptors, and by growth factors such as brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-I, and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF. In combination, these ethanol effects disrupt cellular homeostasis, reduce the survival and migration of neurons, and lead to various developmental defects in the brain. Here we review the signaling mechanisms that are required for proper neuronal development, and how these processes are impaired by ethanol resulting in harmful consequences to brain development.

  5. Brainstem mechanisms underlying the cough reflex and its regulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutolo, Donatella

    2017-09-01

    Cough is a very important airway protective reflex. Cough-related inputs are conveyed to the caudal nucleus tractus solitarii (cNTS) that projects to the brainstem respiratory network. The latter is reconfigured to generate the cough motor pattern. A high degree of modulation is exerted on second-order neurons and the brainstem respiratory network by sensory inputs and higher brain areas. Two medullary structures proved to have key functions in cough production and to be strategic sites of action for centrally active drugs: the cNTS and the caudal ventral respiratory group (cVRG). Drugs microinjected into these medullary structures caused downregulation or upregulation of the cough reflex. The results suggest that inhibition and disinhibition are prominent regulatory mechanisms of this reflex and that both the cNTS and the cVRG are essential in the generation of the entire cough motor pattern. Studies on the basic neural mechanisms subserving the cough reflex may provide hints for novel therapeutic approaches. Different proposals for further investigations are advanced. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Probabilistic causality and radiogenic cancers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Groeer, P.G.

    1986-01-01

    A review and scrutiny of the literature on probability and probabilistic causality shows that it is possible under certain assumptions to estimate the probability that a certain type of cancer diagnosed in an individual exposed to radiation prior to diagnosis was caused by this exposure. Diagnosis of this causal relationship like diagnosis of any disease - malignant or not - requires always some subjective judgments by the diagnostician. It is, therefore, illusory to believe that tables based on actuarial data can provide objective estimates of the chance that a cancer diagnosed in an individual is radiogenic. It is argued that such tables can only provide a base from which the diagnostician(s) deviate in one direction or the other according to his (their) individual (consensual) judgment. Acceptance of a physician's diagnostic judgment by patients is commonplace. Similar widespread acceptance of expert judgment by claimants in radiation compensation cases does presently not exist. Judicious use of the present radioepidemiological tables prepared by the Working Group of the National Institutes of Health or of updated future versions of similar tables may improve the situation. 20 references

  7. Entanglement, non-Markovianity, and causal non-separability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milz, Simon; Pollock, Felix A.; Le, Thao P.; Chiribella, Giulio; Modi, Kavan

    2018-03-01

    Quantum mechanics, in principle, allows for processes with indefinite causal order. However, most of these causal anomalies have not yet been detected experimentally. We show that every such process can be simulated experimentally by means of non-Markovian dynamics with a measurement on additional degrees of freedom. In detail, we provide an explicit construction to implement arbitrary a causal processes. Furthermore, we give necessary and sufficient conditions for open system dynamics with measurement to yield processes that respect causality locally, and find that tripartite entanglement and nonlocal unitary transformations are crucial requirements for the simulation of causally indefinite processes. These results show a direct connection between three counter-intuitive concepts: entanglement, non-Markovianity, and causal non-separability.

  8. Internal insulation failure mechanisms of HV equipment under service conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lokhanin, A.K.; Morozova, T.I. [All-Russian Electrochemical Inst. (Russian Federation); Shneider, G.Y. [Electrozavod Holding Company (Russian Federation); Sokolov, V.V. [Scientific and Engineering Centre, ZTZ Service Research Inst. (Russian Federation); Chornogotsky, V.M. [Ukrainian Transformer Research Inst. (Ukraine)

    2005-09-01

    Failure mechanisms in oil-barrier transformer insulation and oil-paper condenser type insulation of transformers and HV bushing were discussed with reference to typical defects and failure modes of oil-barrier insulation of transformers, shunt reactor, condenser type bushing and instrument current transformers. It was noted that insulation problems predominantly involve the impairment of insulation, and that the relative rate of major failures in shunt reactors is about 1 per cent. It was suggested that bushings can cause about 45 per cent of major transformer failures, with aged mode failure occurring most frequently. The failure rate of 220-500 kV CTs accounts for more than 60 per cent of total instrument transformer failures. Two failure modes were observed: ionisation-mode and aging-mode failures. The reduction of switching surge breakdown voltage due to deposit of insoluble aging products was discussed. A long-term dielectric strength test revealed the following 2 mechanisms of insulation breakdown: accidental breakdown during the first period of aging and wearing mode breakdown due to degradation of materials at the last stage of the calculated terms of aging. Issues concerning the mechanism of the incipient irreversible failure in oil-barrier insulation were discussed, as well as issues concerning creeping discharge and large failures during normal operating conditions. It was suggested that the occurrence of surface discharge is associated with increased voltage due to oil breakdown progressing into insulation destruction and surface discharge as a self-firing phenomenon. Failure modes induced by peculiar oil and staining of internal porcelain were reviewed. It was noted that the discharges across the inner part of the transformer and porcelain were the out-come of a typical aging-mode phenomenon in the bushing. In addition, failure modes induced by staining the outer surface of bottom porcelain were discussed, as well as failure of oil-filled paper

  9. Parametric study of control mechanism of cortical bone remodeling under mechanical stimulus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yanan; Qin, Qing-Hua

    2010-03-01

    The control mechanism of mechanical bone remodeling at cellular level was investigated by means of an extensive parametric study on a theoretical model described in this paper. From a perspective of control mechanism, it was found that there are several control mechanisms working simultaneously in bone remodeling which is a complex process. Typically, an extensive parametric study was carried out for investigating model parameter space related to cell differentiation and apoptosis which can describe the fundamental cell lineage behaviors. After analyzing all the combinations of 728 permutations in six model parameters, we have identified a small number of parameter combinations that can lead to physiologically realistic responses which are similar to theoretically idealized physiological responses. The results presented in the work enhanced our understanding on mechanical bone remodeling and the identified control mechanisms can help researchers to develop combined pharmacological-mechanical therapies to treat bone loss diseases such as osteoporosis.

  10. Mechanisms Underlying Profibrotic Epithelial Phenotype and Epithelial-Mesenchymal Crosstalk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bialik, Janne Folke

    , their roles in epithelial reprogramming are unclear. The aim of this thesis was to elucidate (i) the mechanism of TGFβ-induced TAZ expression in kidney fibrosis, (ii) the roles of MRTF and TAZ in PEP, (iii) how MRTF and TAZ regulate the oxidative state of the epithelium, and (iv) if the ensuing ROS production...... and TAZ prevented this, linking the cytoskeleton to the oxidative state of the cell. In Paper II TGFβ-induced increase in TAZ expression was investigated. Using pharmacological inhibition we show that non-canonical signaling via p38 and its downstream target MK2 mediates this upregulation. Furthermore......, MRTF regulates TAZ expression in a translocation-independent manner. Pharmacological inhibition of Nox4, a known activator of p38, resulted in decreased TAZ, suggesting a feedback loop in which Nox4 regulates TAZ and MRTF, which in turn regulates Nox4. In Paper III we investigated cytokine expression...

  11. Mechanisms underlying rapid aldosterone effects in the kidney.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Thomas, Warren

    2012-02-01

    The steroid hormone aldosterone is a key regulator of electrolyte transport in the kidney and contributes to both homeostatic whole-body electrolyte balance and the development of renal and cardiovascular pathologies. Aldosterone exerts its action principally through the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR), which acts as a ligand-dependent transcription factor in target tissues. Aldosterone also stimulates the activation of protein kinases and secondary messenger signaling cascades that act independently on specific molecular targets in the cell membrane and also modulate the transcriptional action of aldosterone through MR. This review describes current knowledge regarding the mechanisms and targets of rapid aldosterone action in the nephron and how aldosterone integrates these responses into the regulation of renal physiology.

  12. Mechanisms underlying rapid aldosterone effects in the kidney.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Thomas, Warren

    2011-03-17

    The steroid hormone aldosterone is a key regulator of electrolyte transport in the kidney and contributes to both homeostatic whole-body electrolyte balance and the development of renal and cardiovascular pathologies. Aldosterone exerts its action principally through the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR), which acts as a ligand-dependent transcription factor in target tissues. Aldosterone also stimulates the activation of protein kinases and secondary messenger signaling cascades that act independently on specific molecular targets in the cell membrane and also modulate the transcriptional action of aldosterone through MR. This review describes current knowledge regarding the mechanisms and targets of rapid aldosterone action in the nephron and how aldosterone integrates these responses into the regulation of renal physiology.

  13. Molecular mechanisms underlying the development of hepatocellular carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergsland, E K

    2001-10-01

    Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a disease that is extremely difficult to manage and is markedly increasing in incidence. Malignant transformation generally occurs in the setting of liver dysfunction related to a number of different diseases, including viral hepatitis, alcoholic liver disease, and aflatoxin exposure. Short of surgical or ablative approaches, no standard therapy exists for HCC and the prognosis is poor. Perhaps our best hope is that further elucidation of the specific molecular features underlying the disease will translate into innovative, and potentially disease-specific strategies to manage this difficult cancer. Exposure to aflatoxin is associated with a specific mutation in the tumor-suppressor gene p53. The exact molecular events underlying hepatocarcinogenesis in the setting of viral infection have yet to be elucidated, although there is evidence to suggest that virus-encoded proteins contribute to malignant transformation. Both hepatitis B X antigen and hepatitis C core protein appear to interact with a variety of cellular proteins leading to alterations in signal transduction and transcriptional activity. These events presumably cooperate to facilitate malignant progression by promoting extended hepatocyte survival, evasion of the immune response, and acquisition of mutations through genomic instability. Copyright 2001 by W.B. Saunders Company.

  14. Neural mechanisms underlying neurooptometric rehabilitation following traumatic brain injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hudac CM

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Caitlin M Hudac1, Srinivas Kota1, James L Nedrow2, Dennis L Molfese1,31Department of Psychology, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 2Oculi Vision Rehabilitation, 3Center for Brain, Biology, and Behavior, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NEAbstract: Mild to severe traumatic brain injuries have lasting effects on everyday functioning. Issues relating to sensory problems are often overlooked or not addressed until well after the onset of the injury. In particular, vision problems related to ambient vision and the magnocellular pathway often result in posttrauma vision syndrome or visual midline shift syndrome. Symptoms from these syndromes are not restricted to the visual domain. Patients commonly experience proprioceptive, kinesthetic, vestibular, cognitive, and language problems. Neurooptometric rehabilitation often entails the use of corrective lenses, prisms, and binasal occlusion to accommodate the unstable magnocellular system. However, little is known regarding the neural mechanisms engaged during neurooptometric rehabilitation, nor how these mechanisms impact other domains. Event-related potentials from noninvasive electrophysiological recordings can be used to assess rehabilitation progress in patients. In this case report, high-density visual event-related potentials were recorded from one patient with posttrauma vision syndrome and secondary visual midline shift syndrome during a pattern reversal task, both with and without prisms. Results indicate that two factors occurring during the end portion of the P148 component (168–256 milliseconds poststimulus onset map onto two separate neural systems that were engaged with and without neurooptometric rehabilitation. Without prisms, neural sources within somatosensory, language, and executive brain regions engage inefficient magnocellular system processing. However, when corrective prisms were worn, primary visual areas were appropriately engaged. The impact of using early

  15. Mechanical characterization of stomach tissue under uniaxial tensile action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Z G; Li, W; Zhou, Z R

    2015-02-26

    In this article, the tensile properties of gastric wall were investigated by using biomechanical test and theoretical analysis. The samples of porcine stomach strips from smaller and greater curvature of the stomach were cut in longitudinal and circumferential direction, respectively. The loading-unloading, stress relaxation, strain creep, tensile fracture tests were performed at mucosa-submucosa, serosa-muscle and intact layer, respectively. Results showed that the biomechanical properties of the porcine stomach depended on the layers, orientations and locations of the gastric wall and presented typical viscoelastic, nonlinear and anisotropic mechanical properties. During loading-unloading test, the stress of serosa-muscle layer in the longitudinal direction was 15-20% more than that in the circumferential direction at 12% stretch ratio, while it could reach about 40% for the intact layer and 50% for the mucosa-submucosa layer. The results of stress relaxation and strain creep showed that the variation degree was obviously faster in the circumferential direction than that in the longitudinal direction, and the ultimate residual values were also different for the different layers, orientations and locations. In the process of fracture test, the serosa-muscle layer fractured firstly followed by the mucosa-submucosa layer when the intact layer was tested, the longitudinal strips firstly began to fracture and the required stress value was about twice as much as that in the circumferential strips. The anisotropy and heterogeneity of mechanical characterization of the porcine stomach were related to its complicated geometry, structure and functions. The results would help us to understand the biomechanics of soft organ tissue. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Mechanisms underlying probucol-induced hERG-channel deficiency

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi YQ

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Yuan-Qi Shi,1,* Cai-Chuan Yan,1,* Xiao Zhang,1 Meng Yan,1 Li-Rong Liu,1 Huai-Ze Geng,1 Lin Lv,1 Bao-Xin Li1,21Department of Pharmacology, Harbin Medical University, 2State-Province Key Laboratory of Biopharmaceutical Engineering, Harbin, Heilongjiang, People’s Republic of China*These authors contributed equally to this workAbstract: The hERG gene encodes the pore-forming α-subunit of the rapidly activating delayed rectifier potassium channel (IKr, which is important for cardiac repolarization. Reduction of IhERG due to genetic mutations or drug interferences causes long QT syndrome, leading to life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias (torsades de pointes or sudden death. Probucol is a cholesterol-lowering drug that could reduce hERG current by decreasing plasma membrane hERG protein expression and eventually cause long QT syndrome. Here, we investigated the mechanisms of probucol effects on IhERG and hERG-channel expression. Our data demonstrated that probucol reduces SGK1 expression, known as SGK isoform, in a concentration-dependent manner, resulting in downregulation of phosphorylated E3 ubiquitin ligase Nedd4-2 expression, but not the total level of Nedd4-2. As a result, the hERG protein reduces, due to the enhanced ubiquitination level. On the contrary, carbachol could enhance the phosphorylation level of Nedd4-2 as an alternative to SGK1, and thus rescue the ubiquitin-mediated degradation of hERG channels caused by probucol. These discoveries provide a novel mechanism of probucol-induced hERG-channel deficiency, and imply that carbachol or its analog may serve as potential therapeutic compounds for the handling of probucol cardiotoxicity.Keywords: long QT, hERG potassium channels, probucol, SGK1, Nedd4-2

  17. Transcranial alternating current stimulation: A review of the underlying mechanisms and modulation of cognitive processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph S Herrmann

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Brain oscillations of different frequencies have been associated with a variety of cognitive functions. Convincing evidence supporting those associations has been provided by studies using intracranial stimulation, pharmacological interventions and lesion studies. The emergence of novel non-invasive brain stimulation techniques like repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS and transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS now allows to modulate brain oscillations directly. Particularly, tACS offers the unique opportunity to causally link brain oscillations of a specific frequency range to cognitive processes, because it uses sinusoidal currents that are bound to one frequency only. Using tACS allows to modulate brain oscillations and in turn to influence cognitive processes, thereby demonstrating the causal link between the two. Here, we review findings about the physiological mechanism of tACS and studies that have used tACS to modulate basic motor and sensory processes as well as higher cognitive processes like memory, ambiguous perception, and decision making.

  18. Algorithmic mechanisms for reliable crowdsourcing computation under collusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández Anta, Antonio; Georgiou, Chryssis; Mosteiro, Miguel A; Pareja, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    We consider a computing system where a master processor assigns a task for execution to worker processors that may collude. We model the workers' decision of whether to comply (compute the task) or not (return a bogus result to save the computation cost) as a game among workers. That is, we assume that workers are rational in a game-theoretic sense. We identify analytically the parameter conditions for a unique Nash Equilibrium where the master obtains the correct result. We also evaluate experimentally mixed equilibria aiming to attain better reliability-profit trade-offs. For a wide range of parameter values that may be used in practice, our simulations show that, in fact, both master and workers are better off using a pure equilibrium where no worker cheats, even under collusion, and even for colluding behaviors that involve deviating from the game.

  19. Mechanisms of microstructural changes of fuel under irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garcia, P.; Carlot, G.; Dorado, B.; Maillard, S.; Sabathier, C.; Martin, G.; Oh, J.Y.; Welland, M.J.

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear fuels are subjected to high levels of radiation damage mainly due to the slowing of fission fragments, which results in substantial modifications of the initial fuel microstructure. Microstructure changes alter practically all engineering fuel properties such as atomic transport or thermomechanical properties so understanding these changes is essential to predicting the performance of fuel elements. Also, with increasing burn-up, the fuel drifts away from its initial composition as the fission process produces new chemical elements. Because nuclear fuels operate at high temperature and usually under high-temperature gradients, damage annealing, foreign atom or defect clustering and migration occur on multiple time and length scales, which make long-term predictions difficult. The end result is a fuel microstructure which may show extensive differences on the scale of a single fuel pellet. The main challenge we are faced with is, therefore, to identify the phenomena occurring on the atom scale that are liable to have macroscopic effects that will determine the microstructure changes and ultimately the life-span of a fuel element. One step towards meeting this challenge is to develop and apply experimental or modelling methods capable of connecting events that occur over very short length and timescales to changes in the fuel microstructure over engineering length and timescales. In the first part of this chapter, we provide an overview of some of the more important microstructure modifications observed in nuclear fuels. The emphasis is placed on oxide fuels because of the extensive amount of data available in relation to these materials under neutron or ion irradiation. When possible and relevant, the specifics of other types of fuels such as metallic or carbide fuels are alluded to. Throughout this chapter but more specifically in the latter part, we attempt to give examples of how modelling and experimentation at various scales can provide us with

  20. Separable mechanisms underlying global feature-based attention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bondarenko, Rowena; Boehler, Carsten N; Stoppel, Christian M; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Schoenfeld, Mircea A; Hopf, Jens-Max

    2012-10-31

    Feature-based attention is known to operate in a spatially global manner, in that the selection of attended features is not bound to the spatial focus of attention. Here we used electromagnetic recordings in human observers to characterize the spatiotemporal signature of such global selection of an orientation feature. Observers performed a simple orientation-discrimination task while ignoring task-irrelevant orientation probes outside the focus of attention. We observed that global feature-based selection, indexed by the brain response to unattended orientation probes, is composed of separable functional components. One such component reflects global selection based on the similarity of the probe with task-relevant orientation values ("template matching"), which is followed by a component reflecting selection based on the similarity of the probe with the orientation value under discrimination in the focus of attention ("discrimination matching"). Importantly, template matching occurs at ∼150 ms after stimulus onset, ∼80 ms before the onset of discrimination matching. Moreover, source activity underlying template matching and discrimination matching was found to originate from ventral extrastriate cortex, with the former being generated in more anterolateral and the latter in more posteromedial parts, suggesting template matching to occur in visual cortex higher up in the visual processing hierarchy than discrimination matching. We take these observations to indicate that the population-level signature of global feature-based selection reflects a sequence of hierarchically ordered operations in extrastriate visual cortex, in which the selection based on task relevance has temporal priority over the selection based on the sensory similarity between input representations.

  1. Neural mechanisms underlying melodic perception and memory for pitch.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zatorre, R J; Evans, A C; Meyer, E

    1994-04-01

    The neural correlates of music perception were studied by measuring cerebral blood flow (CBF) changes with positron emission tomography (PET). Twelve volunteers were scanned using the bolus water method under four separate conditions: (1) listening to a sequence of noise bursts, (2) listening to unfamiliar tonal melodies, (3) comparing the pitch of the first two notes of the same set of melodies, and (4) comparing the pitch of the first and last notes of the melodies. The latter two conditions were designed to investigate short-term pitch retention under low or high memory load, respectively. Subtraction of the obtained PET images, superimposed on matched MRI scans, provides anatomical localization of CBF changes associated with specific cognitive functions. Listening to melodies, relative to acoustically matched noise sequences, resulted in CBF increases in the right superior temporal and right occipital cortices. Pitch judgments of the first two notes of each melody, relative to passive listening to the same stimuli, resulted in right frontal-lobe activation. Analysis of the high memory load condition relative to passive listening revealed the participation of a number of cortical and subcortical regions, notably in the right frontal and right temporal lobes, as well as in parietal and insular cortex. Both pitch judgment conditions also revealed CBF decreases within the left primary auditory cortex. We conclude that specialized neural systems in the right superior temporal cortex participate in perceptual analysis of melodies; pitch comparisons are effected via a neural network that includes right prefrontal cortex, but active retention of pitch involves the interaction of right temporal and frontal cortices.

  2. Morse theory on timelike and causal curves

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Everson, J.; Talbot, C.J.

    1976-01-01

    It is shown that the set of timelike curves in a globally hyperbolic space-time manifold can be given the structure of a Hilbert manifold under a suitable definition of 'timelike.' The causal curves are the topological closure of this manifold. The Lorentzian energy (corresponding to Milnor's energy, except that the Lorentzian inner product is used) is shown to be a Morse function for the space of causal curves. A fixed end point index theorem is obtained in which a lower bound for the index of the Hessian of the Lorentzian energy is given in terms of the sum of the orders of the conjugate points between the end points. (author)

  3. Causal interpretation of stochastic differential equations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sokol, Alexander; Hansen, Niels Richard

    2014-01-01

    We give a causal interpretation of stochastic differential equations (SDEs) by defining the postintervention SDE resulting from an intervention in an SDE. We show that under Lipschitz conditions, the solution to the postintervention SDE is equal to a uniform limit in probability of postintervention...... structural equation models based on the Euler scheme of the original SDE, thus relating our definition to mainstream causal concepts. We prove that when the driving noise in the SDE is a Lévy process, the postintervention distribution is identifiable from the generator of the SDE....

  4. Causal Entropic Forces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wissner-Gross, A. D.; Freer, C. E.

    2013-04-01

    Recent advances in fields ranging from cosmology to computer science have hinted at a possible deep connection between intelligence and entropy maximization, but no formal physical relationship between them has yet been established. Here, we explicitly propose a first step toward such a relationship in the form of a causal generalization of entropic forces that we find can cause two defining behaviors of the human “cognitive niche”—tool use and social cooperation—to spontaneously emerge in simple physical systems. Our results suggest a potentially general thermodynamic model of adaptive behavior as a nonequilibrium process in open systems.

  5. Comparative analysis reveals the underlying mechanism of vertebrate seasonal reproduction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikegami, Keisuke; Yoshimura, Takashi

    2016-02-01

    Animals utilize photoperiodic changes as a calendar to regulate seasonal reproduction. Birds have highly sophisticated photoperiodic mechanisms and functional genomics analysis in quail uncovered the signal transduction pathway regulating avian seasonal reproduction. Birds detect light with deep brain photoreceptors. Long day (LD) stimulus induces secretion of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) from the pars tuberalis (PT) of the pituitary gland. PT-derived TSH locally activates thyroid hormone (TH) in the hypothalamus, which induces gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) and hence gonadotropin secretion. However, during winter, low temperatures increase serum TH for adaptive thermogenesis, which accelerates germ cell apoptosis by activating the genes involved in metamorphosis. Therefore, TH has a dual role in the regulation of seasonal reproduction. Studies using TSH receptor knockout mice confirmed the involvement of PT-derived TSH in mammalian seasonal reproduction. In addition, studies in mice revealed that the tissue-specific glycosylation of TSH diversifies its function in the circulation to avoid crosstalk. In contrast to birds and mammals, one of the molecular machineries necessary for the seasonal reproduction of fish are localized in the saccus vasculosus from the photoreceptor to the neuroendocrine output. Thus, comparative analysis is a powerful tool to uncover the universality and diversity of fundamental properties in various organisms. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Mechanisms underlying the formation of induced pluripotent stem cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Federico; Huangfu, Danwei

    2015-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) offer unique opportunities for studying human biology, modeling diseases and for therapeutic applications. The simplest approach so far to generate human PSCs lines is through reprogramming of somatic cells from an individual by defined factors, referred to simply as reprogramming. Reprogramming circumvents the ethical issues associated with human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and nuclear transfer hESCs (nt-hESCs), and the resulting induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) retain the same basic genetic makeup as the somatic cell used for reprogramming. Since the first report of iPSCs by Takahashi and Yamanaka, the molecular mechanisms of reprogramming have been extensively investigated. A better mechanistic understanding of reprogramming is fundamental not only to iPSC biology and improving the quality of iPSCs for therapeutic use, but also to our understanding of the molecular basis of cell identity, pluripotency and plasticity. Here we summarize the genetic, epigenetic and cellular events during reprogramming, and the roles of various factors identified thus far in the reprogramming process. PMID:26383234

  7. The neural sociometer: brain mechanisms underlying state self-esteem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenberger, Naomi I; Inagaki, Tristen K; Muscatell, Keely A; Byrne Haltom, Kate E; Leary, Mark R

    2011-11-01

    On the basis of the importance of social connection for survival, humans may have evolved a "sociometer"-a mechanism that translates perceptions of rejection or acceptance into state self-esteem. Here, we explored the neural underpinnings of the sociometer by examining whether neural regions responsive to rejection or acceptance were associated with state self-esteem. Participants underwent fMRI while viewing feedback words ("interesting," "boring") ostensibly chosen by another individual (confederate) to describe the participant's previously recorded interview. Participants rated their state self-esteem in response to each feedback word. Results demonstrated that greater activity in rejection-related neural regions (dorsal ACC, anterior insula) and mentalizing regions was associated with lower-state self-esteem. Additionally, participants whose self-esteem decreased from prescan to postscan versus those whose self-esteem did not showed greater medial prefrontal cortical activity, previously associated with self-referential processing, in response to negative feedback. Together, the results inform our understanding of the origin and nature of our feelings about ourselves.

  8. Raynaud's Phenomenon: A Brief Review of the Underlying Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fardoun, Manal M; Nassif, Joseph; Issa, Khodr; Baydoun, Elias; Eid, Ali H

    2016-01-01

    Raynaud's phenomenon (RP) is characterized by exaggerated cold-induced vasoconstriction. This augmented vasoconstriction occurs by virtue of a reflex response to cooling via the sympathetic nervous system as well as by local activation of α 2C adrenoceptors (α 2C -AR). In a cold-initiated, mitochondrion-mediated mechanism involving reactive oxygen species and the Rho/ROCK pathway, cytoskeletal rearrangement in vascular smooth muscle cells orchestrates the translocation of α 2C -AR to the cell membrane, where this receptor readily interacts with its ligand. Different parameters are involved in this spatial and functional rescue of α 2C -AR. Of notable relevance is the female hormone, 17β-estradiol, or estrogen. This is consistent with the high prevalence of RP in premenopausal women compared to age-matched males. In addition to dissecting the role of these various players, the contribution of pollution as well as genetic background to the onset and prevalence of RP are also discussed. Different therapeutic approaches employed as treatment modalities for this disease are also highlighted and analyzed. The lack of an appropriate animal model for RP mandates that more efforts be undertaken in order to better understand and eventually treat this disease. Although several lines of treatment are utilized, it is important to note that precaution is often effective in reducing severity or frequency of RP attacks.

  9. Neural mechanisms underlying social conformity in an ultimatum game

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhenyu eWei

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available When individuals’ actions are incongruent with those of the group they belong to, they may change their initial behavior in order to conform to the group norm. This phenomenon is known as social conformity. In the present study, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to investigate brain activity in response to group opinion during an ultimatum game. Results showed that participants changed their choices when these choices conflicted with the normative opinion of the group they were members of, especially in conditions of unfair treatment. The fMRI data revealed that a conflict with group norms activated the brain regions involved in norm violations and behavioral adjustment. Furthermore, in the reject-unfair condition, we observed that a conflict with group norms activated the medial frontal gyrus. These findings contribute to recent research examining neural mechanisms involved in detecting violations of social norms, and provide information regarding the neural representation of conformity behavior in an economic game.

  10. Adhesive wear mechanism under combined electric diamond grinding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Popov Vyacheslav

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The article provides a scientific substantiation of loading of metal-bond diamond grinding wheels and describes the mechanism of contact interaction (interlocking of wheels with tool steel as well as its general properties having an influence on combined electric diamond grinding efficiency. The study concluded that a loaded layer can be formed in a few stages different by nature. It is known, that one of the causes of grinding degradation is a continuous loading of active grits (abrasive grinding tool by workpiece chips. It all affects the diamond grinding wheels efficiency and grinding ability with a result in increase of tool pressure, contact temperature and wheels specific removal rate. Science has partially identified some various methods to minimize grinding wheel loading, however, as to loading of metal-bond diamond grinding wheels the search is still in progress. Therefore, research people have to state, that in spite of the fact that the wheels made of cubic boron nitride are of little use as applied to ceramic, ultrahard, hard-alloyed hard-to-machine and nano-materials of the time, but manufactures have to apply cubic boron nitride wheels wherein diamond ones preferable.

  11. Linking Pesticide Exposure with Pediatric Leukemia: Potential Underlying Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández, Antonio F; Menéndez, Pablo

    2016-03-29

    Leukemia is the most common cancer in children, representing 30% of all childhood cancers. The disease arises from recurrent genetic insults that block differentiation of hematopoietic stem and/or progenitor cells (HSPCs) and drives uncontrolled proliferation and survival of the differentiation-blocked clone. Pediatric leukemia is phenotypically and genetically heterogeneous with an obscure etiology. The interaction between genetic factors and environmental agents represents a potential etiological driver. Although information is limited, the principal toxic mechanisms of potential leukemogenic agents (e.g., etoposide, benzene metabolites, bioflavonoids and some pesticides) include topoisomerase II inhibition and/or excessive generation of free radicals, which may induce DNA single- and double-strand breaks (DNA-DSBs) in early HSPCs. Chromosomal rearrangements (duplications, deletions and translocations) may occur if these lesions are not properly repaired. The initiating hit usually occurs in utero and commonly leads to the expression of oncogenic fusion proteins. Subsequent cooperating hits define the disease latency and occur after birth and may be of a genetic, epigenetic or immune nature (i.e., delayed infection-mediated immune deregulation). Here, we review the available experimental and epidemiological evidence linking pesticide exposure to infant and childhood leukemia and provide a mechanistic basis to support the association, focusing on early initiating molecular events.

  12. Raynaud's Phenomenon: a Brief Review of the Underlying Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manal Fardoun

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Raynaud's phenomenon (RP is characterized by exaggerated cold-induced vasoconstriction. This augmented vasoconstriction occurs by virtue of a reflex response to cooling via the sympathetic nervous system as well as by local activation of α2C adrenoceptors (α2C-AR. In a cold-initiated, mitochondrion-mediated mechanism involving reactive oxygen species and the Rho/ROCK pathway, cytoskeletal rearrangement in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs orchestrates the translocation of α2C-AR to the cell membrane, where this receptor readily interacts with its ligand. Different parameters are involved in this spatial and functional rescue of α2C-AR. Of notable relevance is the female hormone, 17β-estradiol, or estrogen. This is consistent with the high prevalence of RP in pre-menopausal women compared to age-matched males. In addition to dissecting the role of these various players, the contribution of pollution as well as genetic background to the onset and prevalence of RP are also discussed. Different therapeutic approaches employed as treatment modalities for this disease are also highlighted and analyzed. The lack of an appropriate animal model for RP mandates that more efforts be undertaken in order to better understand and eventually treat this disease. Although several lines of treatment are utilized, it is important to note that precaution is often effective in reducing severity or frequency of RP attacks.

  13. Assessing mechanical vulnerability in water distribution networks under multiple failures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berardi, Luigi; Ugarelli, Rita; Røstum, Jon; Giustolisi, Orazio

    2014-03-01

    Understanding mechanical vulnerability of water distribution networks (WDN) is of direct relevance for water utilities since it entails two different purposes. On the one hand, it might support the identification of severe failure scenarios due to external causes (e.g., natural or intentional events) which result into the most critical consequences on WDN supply capacity. On the other hand, it aims at figure out the WDN portions which are more prone to be affected by asset disruptions. The complexity of such analysis stems from the number of possible scenarios with single and multiple simultaneous shutdowns of asset elements leading to modifications of network topology and insufficient water supply to customers. In this work, the search for the most disruptive combinations of multiple asset failure events is formulated and solved as a multiobjective optimization problem. The higher vulnerability failure scenarios are detected as those causing the lower supplied demand due to the lower number of simultaneous failures. The automatic detection of WDN topology, subsequent to the detachments of failed elements, is combined with pressure-driven analysis. The methodology is demonstrated on a real water distribution network. Results show that, besides the failures causing the detachment of reservoirs, tanks, or pumps, there are other different topological modifications which may cause severe WDN service disruptions. Such information is of direct relevance to support planning asset enhancement works and improve the preparedness to extreme events.

  14. Preschoolers prefer to learn causal information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aubry eAlvarez

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Young children, in general, appear to have a strong drive to explore the environment in ways that reveal its underlying causal structure. But are they really attuned specifically to casual information in this quest for understanding, or do they show equal interest in other types of non-obvious information about the world? To answer this question, we introduced 20 three-year-old children to two puppets who were anxious to tell the child about a set of novel artifacts and animals. One puppet consistently described causal properties of the items while the other puppet consistently described carefully matched non-causal properties of the same items. After a familiarization period in which children learned which type of information to expect from each informant, children were given the opportunity to choose which they wanted to hear describe each of eight pictured test items. On average, children chose to hear from the informant that provided causal descriptions on 72% of the trials. This preference for causal information has important implications for explaining the role of conceptual information in supporting early learning and may suggest means for maximizing interest and motivation in young children.

  15. Causal inheritance in plane wave quotients

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hubeny, Veronika E.; Rangamani, Mukund; Ross, Simon F.

    2003-01-01

    We investigate the appearance of closed timelike curves in quotients of plane waves along spacelike isometries. First we formulate a necessary and sufficient condition for a quotient of a general spacetime to preserve stable causality. We explicitly show that the plane waves are stably causal; in passing, we observe that some pp-waves are not even distinguishing. We then consider the classification of all quotients of the maximally supersymmetric ten-dimensional plane wave under a spacelike isometry, and show that the quotient will lead to closed timelike curves iff the isometry involves a translation along the u direction. The appearance of these closed timelike curves is thus connected to the special properties of the light cones in plane wave spacetimes. We show that all other quotients preserve stable causality

  16. Neural mechanism underlying autobiographical memory modulated by remoteness and emotion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge, Ruiyang; Fu, Yan; Wang, DaHua; Yao, Li; Long, Zhiying

    2012-03-01

    Autobiographical memory is the ability to recollect past events from one's own life. Both emotional tone and memory remoteness can influence autobiographical memory retrieval along the time axis of one's life. Although numerous studies have been performed to investigate brain regions involved in retrieving processes of autobiographical memory, the effect of emotional tone and memory age on autobiographical memory retrieval remains to be clarified. Moreover, whether the involvement of hippocampus in consolidation of autobiographical events is time dependent or independent has been controversial. In this study, we investigated the effect of memory remoteness (factor1: recent and remote) and emotional valence (factor2: positive and negative) on neural correlates underlying autobiographical memory by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technique. Although all four conditions activated some common regions known as "core" regions in autobiographical memory retrieval, there are some other regions showing significantly different activation for recent versus remote and positive versus negative memories. In particular, we found that bilateral hippocampal regions were activated in the four conditions regardless of memory remoteness and emotional valence. Thus, our study confirmed some findings of previous studies and provided further evidence to support the multi-trace theory which believes that the role of hippocampus involved in autobiographical memory retrieval is time-independent and permanent in memory consolidation.

  17. Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Origin and Diversification of the Angiosperm Flower

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theissen, Guenter; Melzer, Rainer

    2007-01-01

    Background Understanding the mode and mechanisms of the evolution of the angiosperm flower is a long-standing and central problem of evolutionary biology and botany. It has essentially remained unsolved, however. In contrast, considerable progress has recently been made in our understanding of the genetic basis of flower development in some extant model species. The knowledge that accumulated this way has been pulled together in two major hypotheses, termed the ‘ABC model’ and the ‘floral quartet model’. These models explain how the identity of the different types of floral organs is specified during flower development by homeotic selector genes encoding transcription factors. Scope We intend to explain how the ‘ABC model’ and the ‘floral quartet model’ are now guiding investigations that help to understand the origin and diversification of the angiosperm flower. Conclusions Investigation of orthologues of class B and class C floral homeotic genes in gymnosperms suggest that bisexuality was one of the first innovations during the origin of the flower. The transition from dimer to tetramer formation of floral homeotic proteins after establishment of class E proteins may have increased cooperativity of DNA binding of the transcription factors controlling reproductive growth. That way, we hypothesize, better ‘developmental switches’ originated that facilitated the early evolution of the flower. Expression studies of ABC genes in basally diverging angiosperm lineages, monocots and basal eudicots suggest that the ‘classical’ ABC system known from core eudicots originated from a more fuzzy system with fading borders of gene expression and gradual transitions in organ identity, by sharpening of ABC gene expression domains and organ borders. Shifting boundaries of ABC gene expression may have contributed to the diversification of the angiosperm flower many times independently, as may have changes in interactions between ABC genes and their target

  18. Enhancement of sleep slow waves: underlying mechanisms and practical consequences.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele eBellesi

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Even modest sleep restriction, especially the loss of sleep slow wave activity, is invariably associated with slower EEG activity during wake, the occurrence of local sleep in an otherwise awake brain, and impaired performance due to cognitive and memory deficits. Recent studies not only confirm the beneficial role of sleep in memory consolidation, but also point to a specific role for sleep slow waves. Thus, the implementation of methods to enhance sleep slow waves without unwanted arousals or lightening of sleep could have significant practical implications. Here we first review the evidence that it is possible to enhance sleep slow waves in humans using transcranial direct-current stimulation and transcranial magnetic stimulation. Since these methods are currently impractical and their safety is questionable, especially for chronic long-term exposure, we then discuss novel data suggesting that it is possible to enhance slow waves using sensory stimuli. We consider the physiology of the K-complex, a peripheral evoked slow wave, and show that, among different sensory modalities, acoustic stimulation is the most effective in increasing the magnitude of slow waves, likely through the activation of non-lemniscal ascending pathways to the thalamo-cortical system. In addition, we discuss how intensity and frequency of the acoustic stimuli, as well as exact timing and pattern of stimulation, affect sleep enhancement. Finally, we discuss automated algorithms that read the EEG and, in real-time, adjust the stimulation parameters in a closed-loop manner to obtain an increase in sleep slow waves and avoid undesirable arousals. In conclusion, while discussing the mechanisms that underlie the generation of sleep slow waves, we review the converging evidence showing that acoustic stimulation is safe and represents an ideal tool for slow wave sleep enhancement.

  19. Thin circular cylinder under axisymmetrical thermal and mechanical loading

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arnaudeau, F.; Zarka, J.; Gerij, J.

    1977-01-01

    To assess structural integrity of components subjected to cyclic thermal loadings one must look at thermal ratchetting as a possible failure mode. Considering a thin circular cylinder subjected to constant internal pressure and cyclically varying thermal gradient through the thickness Bree, J. Strain Analysis 2 (1967) No.3, obtained a diagram that serves as a foundation for many design rules (e.g.: ASME code). The upper part of the french LMFBR main vessel is subjected to an axisymmetrical axial thermal loading and an axial load (own weight). Operation of the reactor leads to cyclic variations of the axial thermal loading. The question that arises is whether or not the Bree diagram is realistic for such loading conditions. A special purpose computer code (Ratch) was developed to analyse a thin circular cylinder subjected to axisymmetrical mechanical and thermal loadings. The Mendelson's approach of this problem is followed. Classical Kirchoff-Love hypothesis of thin shells is used and a state of plane stress is assumed. Space integrations are performed by Gaussian quadrature in the axial direction and by Simpson's one third rule throughout the thickness. Thermoelastic-plastic constitutive equations are solved with an implicit scheme (Nguyen). Thermovisco-plastic constitutive equations are solved with an explicit time integration scheme (Treanor's algorithm especially fitted). A Bree type diagram is obtained for an axial step of temperature which varies cyclically and a sustained constant axial load. The material behavior is assumed perfectly plastic and creep effect is not considered. Results show that the domain where no ratchetting occurs is reduced when compared with the domain predicted by the Bree diagram

  20. Compression under a mechanical counter pressure space suit glove

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldie, James M A.; Tanaka, Kunihiko; Tourbier, Dietmar; Webb, Paul; Jarvis, Christine W.; Hargens, Alan R.

    2002-01-01

    Background: Current gas-pressurized space suits are bulky stiff shells severely limiting astronaut function and capability. A mechanical counter pressure (MCP) space suit in the form of a tight elastic garment could dramatically improve extravehicular activity (EVA) dexterity, but also be advantageous in safety, cost, mass and volume. The purpose of this study was to verify that a prototype MCP glove exerts the design compression of 200 mmHg, a pressure similar to the current NASA EVA suit. Methods: Seven male subjects donned a pressure measurement array and MCP glove on the right hand, which was placed into a partial vacuum chamber. Average compression was recorded on the palm, the bottom of the middle finger, the top of the middle finger and the dorsum of the hand at pressures of 760 (ambient), 660 and 580 mmHg. The vacuum chamber was used to simulate the pressure difference between the low breathing pressure of the current NASA space suits (approximately 200 mmHg) and an unprotected hand in space. Results: At ambient conditions, the MCP glove compressed the dorsum of the hand at 203.5 +/- 22.7 mmHg, the bottom of the middle finger at 179.4 +/- 16.0 mmHg, and the top of the middle finger at 183.8 +/- 22.6 mmHg. The palm compression was significantly lower (59.6 +/- 18.8 mmHg, pglove compression with the chamber pressure reductions. Conclusions: The MCP glove compressed the dorsum of the hand and middle finger at the design pressure.

  1. Bacillus thuringiensis toxin resistance mechanisms among Lepidoptera: progress on genomic approaches to uncover causal mutations in the European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Transgenic plants that expressed Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) crystalline (Cry) protein toxins can suffer feeding damage from a small number of lepidopteran insect species under field conditions, which has heightened concerns about the durability of pest control tactics. Genomics research has provid...

  2. Neural mechanisms underlying cognitive inflexibility in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Florian; Seer, Caroline; Loens, Sebastian; Wegner, Florian; Schrader, Christoph; Dressler, Dirk; Dengler, Reinhard; Kopp, Bruno

    2016-12-01

    Cognitive inflexibility is a hallmark of executive dysfunction in Parkinson's disease (PD). This deficit consistently manifests itself in a PD-related increase in the number of perseverative errors committed on the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST). However, the neural processes underlying perseverative WCST performance in PD are still largely unknown. The present study is the first to investigate the event-related potential (ERP) correlates of cognitive inflexibility on the WCST in PD patients. Thirty-two PD patients and 35 matched control participants completed a computerized version of the WCST while the electroencephalogram (EEG) was recorded. Behavioral results revealed the expected increase in perseverative errors in patients with PD. ERP analysis focused on two established indicators of executive processes: the fronto-central P3a as an index of attentional orienting and the sustained parietal positivity (SPP) as an index of set-shifting processes. In comparison to controls, P3a amplitudes were significantly attenuated in PD patients. Regression analysis further revealed that P3a and SPP amplitudes interactively contributed to the prediction of perseverative errors in PD patients: The number of perseverative errors was only increased when both ERP amplitudes were attenuated. Notably, the two ERP markers of executive processes accounted for more than 40% of the variance in perseverative errors in PD patients. We conclude that cognitive inflexibility in PD occurs when the neural bases of multiple executive processes are affected by the pathophysiology of PD. The combined measurement of P3a and SPP might yield an electrophysiological marker of cognitive inflexibility in PD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Design principles and developmental mechanisms underlying retinal mosaics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, Benjamin E; Keeley, Patrick W

    2015-08-01

    Most structures within the central nervous system (CNS) are composed of different types of neuron that vary in both number and morphology, but relatively little is known about the interplay between these two features, i.e. about the population dynamics of a given cell type. How such arrays of neurons are distributed within a structure, and how they differentiate their dendrites relative to each other, are issues that have recently drawn attention in the invertebrate nervous system, where the genetic and molecular underpinnings of these organizing principles are being revealed in exquisite detail. The retina is one of the few locations where these principles have been extensively studied in the vertebrate CNS, indeed, where the design principles of 'mosaic regularity' and 'uniformity of coverage' were first explicitly defined, quantified, and related to each other. Recent studies have revealed a number of genes that influence the formation of these histotypical features in the retina, including homologues of those invertebrate genes, although close inspection reveals that they do not always mediate comparable developmental processes nor elucidate fundamental design principles. The present review considers just how pervasive these features of 'mosaic regularity' and 'uniform dendritic coverage' are within the mammalian retina, discussing the means by which such features can be assessed in the mature and developing nervous system and examining the limitations associated with those assessments. We then address the extent to which these two design principles co-exist within different populations of neurons, and how they are achieved during development. Finally, we consider the neural phenotypes obtained in mutant nervous systems, to address whether a prospective gene of interest underlies those very design principles. © 2014 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2014 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  4. Mechanism of attenuation of leptin signaling under chronic ligand stimulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bamberg-Lemper Simone

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Leptin is an adipocyte-derived hormone that acts via its hypothalamic receptor (LEPRb to regulate energy balance. A downstream effect essential for the weight-regulatory action of leptin is the phosphorylation and activation of the latent transcription factor STAT3 by LEPRb-associated Janus kinases (JAKs. Obesity is typically associated with chronically elevated leptin levels and a decreased ability of LEPRb to activate intracellular signal transduction pathways (leptin resistance. Here we have studied the roles of the intracellular tyrosine residues in the negative feedback regulation of LEPRb-signaling under chronic leptin stimulation. Results Mutational analysis showed that the presence of either Tyr985 and Tyr1077 in the intracellular domain of LEPRb was sufficient for the attenuation of STAT3 phosphorylation, whereas mutation of both tyrosines rendered LEPRb resistant to feedback regulation. Overexpression and RNA interference-mediated downregulation of suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3 revealed that both Tyr985 and Tyr1077 were capable of supporting the negative modulatory effect of SOCS3 in reporter gene assays. In contrast, the inhibitory effect of SOCS1 was enhanced by the presence of Tyr985 but not Tyr1077. Finally, the reduction of the STAT-phosphorylating activity of the LEPRb complex after 2 h of leptin stimulation was not accompanied by the dephosphorylation or degradation of LEPRb or the receptor-associated JAK molecule, but depended on Tyr985 and/or Tyr1077. Conclusions Both Tyr985 and Tyr1077 contribute to the negative regulation of LEPRb signaling. The inhibitory effects of SOCS1 and SOCS3 differ in the dependence on the tyrosine residues in the intracellular domain of LEPRb.

  5. Photodegradation kinetics, products and mechanism of timolol under simulated sunlight

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, Yong, E-mail: ychen@hust.edu.cn [School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074 (China); Liang, Qi; Zhou, Danna [College of Material Science and Chemical Engineering, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan 430074 (China); Wang, Zongping, E-mail: zongpingw@hust.edu.cn [School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074 (China); Tao, Tao [School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074 (China); Zuo, Yuegang [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, 285 Old Westport Road, North Dartmouth, MA 02747 (United States)

    2013-05-15

    Highlights: ► The indirect degradation of timolol is first investigated in fulvic acid solution. ► {sup 3}FA{sup *} and {sup 1}O{sub 2} accounted for the degradation of timolol in the aerated FA solutions. ► The presence of halides inhibited the degradation in the order of Cl{sup −} < Br{sup −} < I{sup −}. ► The role of I{sup −} in the degradation was first found to be concentration-dependent. ► The photoproducts of timolol were identified by LC-DAD/ESI-MS/MS analysis. -- Abstract: The photodegradation of β-blocker timolol in fulvic acid (FA) solution was investigated under simulated sunlight. The triplet excited state of FA ({sup 3}FA{sup *}) and singlet oxygen ({sup 1}O{sub 2}) were the main reactive species responsible for the degradation of timolol in the aerated FA solutions. Both dissolved oxygen and iodide ions (I{sup −}) are the efficient quenchers of {sup 3}FA{sup *}. The photodegradation was drastically accelerated after removing the dissolved oxygen. The presence of I{sup −} inhibited the photosensitized degradation of timolol in the deoxygenated FA solutions, whereas the role of I{sup −} in the reaction was concentration-dependent in the aerated solutions. The other halide ions such as chloride (Cl{sup −}) and bromide (Br{sup −}) exhibited less effect on the photodegradation of timolol in both aerated and deoxygenated solutions. By LC-DAD/ESI-MS/MS analysis, the photoproducts of timolol in both aerated and deoxygenated FA solutions were identified. Electron transfer interaction occurred between {sup 3}FA{sup *} and amine moiety of timolol, leading to the cleavage of C–O bond in the side chain and oxidation of the hexatomic ring. These findings suggest the photosensitized degradation was a significant pathway for the elimination of timolol in natural waters.

  6. Functional mechanisms underlying pleiotropic risk alleles at the 19p13.1 breast–ovarian cancer susceptibility locus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrenson, Kate; Kar, Siddhartha; McCue, Karen; Kuchenbaeker, Karoline; Michailidou, Kyriaki; Tyrer, Jonathan; Beesley, Jonathan; Ramus, Susan J.; Li, Qiyuan; Delgado, Melissa K.; Lee, Janet M.; Aittomäki, Kristiina; Andrulis, Irene L.; Anton-Culver, Hoda; Arndt, Volker; Arun, Banu K.; Arver, Brita; Bandera, Elisa V.; Barile, Monica; Barkardottir, Rosa B.; Barrowdale, Daniel; Beckmann, Matthias W.; Benitez, Javier; Berchuck, Andrew; Bisogna, Maria; Bjorge, Line; Blomqvist, Carl; Blot, William; Bogdanova, Natalia; Bojesen, Anders; Bojesen, Stig E.; Bolla, Manjeet K.; Bonanni, Bernardo; Børresen-Dale, Anne-Lise; Brauch, Hiltrud; Brennan, Paul; Brenner, Hermann; Bruinsma, Fiona; Brunet, Joan; Buhari, Shaik Ahmad; Burwinkel, Barbara; Butzow, Ralf; Buys, Saundra S.; Cai, Qiuyin; Caldes, Trinidad; Campbell, Ian; Canniotto, Rikki; Chang-Claude, Jenny; Chiquette, Jocelyne; Choi, Ji-Yeob; Claes, Kathleen B. M.; Collonge-Rame, Marie- Agnès; Damette, Alexandre; Barouk-Simonet, Emmanuelle; Bonnet, Françoise; Bubien, Virginie; Sevenet, Nicolas; Longy, Michel; Berthet, Pascaline; Vaur, Dominique; Castera, Laurent; Ferrer, Sandra Fert; Bignon, Yves-Jean; Uhrhammer, Nancy; Coron, Fanny; Faivre, Laurence; Baurand, Amandine; Jacquot, Caroline; Bertolone, Geoffrey; Lizard, Sarab; Leroux, Dominique; Dreyfus, Hélène; Rebischung, Christine; Peysselon, Magalie; Peyrat, Jean-Philippe; Fournier, Joëlle; Révillion, Françoise; Adenis, Claude; Vénat-Bouvet, Laurence; Léone, Mélanie; Boutry-Kryza, Nadia; Calender, Alain; Giraud, Sophie; Verny-Pierre, Carole; Lasset, Christine; Bonadona, Valérie; Barjhoux, Laure; Sobol, Hagay; Bourdon, Violaine; Noguchi, Tetsuro; Remenieras, Audrey; Coupier, Isabelle; Pujol, Pascal; Sokolowska, Johanna; Bronner, Myriam; Delnatte, Capucine; Bézieau, Stéphane; Mari, Véronique; Gauthier-Villars, Marion; Buecher, Bruno; Rouleau, Etienne; Golmard, Lisa; Moncoutier, Virginie; Belotti, Muriel; de Pauw, Antoine; Elan, Camille; Fourme, Emmanuelle; Birot, Anne-Marie; Saule, Claire; Laurent, Maïté; Houdayer, Claude; Lesueur, Fabienne; Mebirouk, Noura; Coulet, Florence; Colas, Chrystelle; Soubrier, Florent; Warcoin, Mathilde; Prieur, Fabienne; Lebrun, Marine; Kientz, Caroline; Muller, Danièle; Fricker, Jean-Pierre; Toulas, Christine; Guimbaud, Rosine; Gladieff, Laurence; Feillel, Viviane; Mortemousque, Isabelle; Bressac-de-Paillerets, Brigitte; Caron, Olivier; Guillaud-Bataille, Marine; Cook, Linda S.; Cox, Angela; Cramer, Daniel W.; Cross, Simon S.; Cybulski, Cezary; Czene, Kamila; Daly, Mary B.; Damiola, Francesca; Dansonka-Mieszkowska, Agnieszka; Darabi, Hatef; Dennis, Joe; Devilee, Peter; Diez, Orland; Doherty, Jennifer A.; Domchek, Susan M.; Dorfling, Cecilia M.; Dörk, Thilo; Dumont, Martine; Ehrencrona, Hans; Ejlertsen, Bent; Ellis, Steve; Gregory, Helen; Miedzybrodzka, Zosia; Morrison, Patrick J.; Donaldson, Alan; Rogers, Mark T.; Kennedy, M. John; Porteous, Mary E.; Brady, Angela; Barwell, Julian; Foo, Claire; Lalloo, Fiona; Side, Lucy E.; Eason, Jacqueline; Henderson, Alex; Walker, Lisa; Cook, Jackie; Snape, Katie; Murray, Alex; McCann, Emma; Engel, Christoph; Lee, Eunjung; Evans, D. Gareth; Fasching, Peter A.; Feliubadalo, Lidia; Figueroa, Jonine; Flesch-Janys, Dieter; Fletcher, Olivia; Flyger, Henrik; Foretova, Lenka; Fostira, Florentia; Foulkes, William D.; Fridley, Brooke L.; Friedman, Eitan; Frost, Debra; Gambino, Gaetana; Ganz, Patricia A.; Garber, Judy; García-Closas, Montserrat; Gentry-Maharaj, Aleksandra; Ghoussaini, Maya; Giles, Graham G.; Glasspool, Rosalind; Godwin, Andrew K.; Goldberg, Mark S.; Goldgar, David E.; González-Neira, Anna; Goode, Ellen L.; Goodman, Marc T.; Greene, Mark H.; Gronwald, Jacek; Guénel, Pascal; Haiman, Christopher A.; Hall, Per; Hallberg, Emily; Hamann, Ute; Hansen, Thomas V. O.; Harrington, Patricia A.; Hartman, Mikael; Hassan, Norhashimah; Healey, Sue; Rookus, M. A.; van Leeuwen, F. E.; van der Kolk, L. E.; Schmidt, M. K.; Russell, N. S.; de Lange, J. L.; Wijnands, R.; Collée, J. M.; Hooning, M. J.; Seynaeve, C.; van Deurzen, C. H. M.; Obdeijn, I. M.; van Asperen, C. J.; Tollenaar, R. A. E. M.; van Cronenburg, T. C. T. E. F.; Kets, C. M.; Ausems, M. G. E. M.; van der Pol, C. C.; van Os, T. A. M.; Waisfisz, Q.; Meijers-Heijboer, H. E. J.; Gómez-Garcia, E. B.; Oosterwijk, J. C.; Mourits, M. J.; de Bock, G. H.; Vasen, H. F.; Siesling, S.; Verloop, J.; Overbeek, L. I. H.; Heitz, Florian; Herzog, Josef; Høgdall, Estrid; Høgdall, Claus K.; Hogervorst, Frans B. L.; Hollestelle, Antoinette; Hopper, John L.; Hulick, Peter J.; Huzarski, Tomasz; Imyanitov, Evgeny N.; Fox, Stephen; Kirk, Judy; Lindeman, Geoff; Price, Melanie; Bowtell, David; deFazio, Anna; Webb, Penny; Isaacs, Claudine; Ito, Hidemi; Jakubowska, Anna; Janavicius, Ramunas; Jensen, Allan; John, Esther M.; Johnson, Nichola; Kabisch, Maria; Kang, Daehee; Kapuscinski, Miroslav; Karlan, Beth Y.; Khan, Sofia; Kiemeney, Lambertus A.; Kjaer, Susanne Kruger; Knight, Julia A.; Konstantopoulou, Irene; Kosma, Veli-Matti; Kristensen, Vessela; Kupryjanczyk, Jolanta; Kwong, Ava; de la Hoya, Miguel; Laitman, Yael; Lambrechts, Diether; Le, Nhu; De Leeneer, Kim; Lester, Jenny; Levine, Douglas A.; Li, Jingmei; Lindblom, Annika; Long, Jirong; Lophatananon, Artitaya; Loud, Jennifer T.; Lu, Karen; Lubinski, Jan; Mannermaa, Arto; Manoukian, Siranoush; Le Marchand, Loic; Margolin, Sara; Marme, Frederik; Massuger, Leon F. A. G.; Matsuo, Keitaro; Mazoyer, Sylvie; McGuffog, Lesley; McLean, Catriona; McNeish, Iain; Meindl, Alfons; Menon, Usha; Mensenkamp, Arjen R.; Milne, Roger L.; Montagna, Marco; Moysich, Kirsten B.; Muir, Kenneth; Mulligan, Anna Marie; Nathanson, Katherine L.; Ness, Roberta B.; Neuhausen, Susan L.; Nevanlinna, Heli; Nord, Silje; Nussbaum, Robert L.; Odunsi, Kunle; Offit, Kenneth; Olah, Edith; Olopade, Olufunmilayo I.; Olson, Janet E.; Olswold, Curtis; O'Malley, David; Orlow, Irene; Orr, Nick; Osorio, Ana; Park, Sue Kyung; Pearce, Celeste L.; Pejovic, Tanja; Peterlongo, Paolo; Pfeiler, Georg; Phelan, Catherine M.; Poole, Elizabeth M.; Pylkäs, Katri; Radice, Paolo; Rantala, Johanna; Rashid, Muhammad Usman; Rennert, Gad; Rhenius, Valerie; Rhiem, Kerstin; Risch, Harvey A.; Rodriguez, Gus; Rossing, Mary Anne; Rudolph, Anja; Salvesen, Helga B.; Sangrajrang, Suleeporn; Sawyer, Elinor J.; Schildkraut, Joellen M.; Schmidt, Marjanka K.; Schmutzler, Rita K.; Sellers, Thomas A.; Seynaeve, Caroline; Shah, Mitul; Shen, Chen-Yang; Shu, Xiao-Ou; Sieh, Weiva; Singer, Christian F.; Sinilnikova, Olga M.; Slager, Susan; Song, Honglin; Soucy, Penny; Southey, Melissa C.; Stenmark-Askmalm, Marie; Stoppa-Lyonnet, Dominique; Sutter, Christian; Swerdlow, Anthony; Tchatchou, Sandrine; Teixeira, Manuel R.; Teo, Soo H.; Terry, Kathryn L.; Terry, Mary Beth; Thomassen, Mads; Tibiletti, Maria Grazia; Tihomirova, Laima; Tognazzo, Silvia; Toland, Amanda Ewart; Tomlinson, Ian; Torres, Diana; Truong, Thérèse; Tseng, Chiu-chen; Tung, Nadine; Tworoger, Shelley S.; Vachon, Celine; van den Ouweland, Ans M. W.; van Doorn, Helena C.; van Rensburg, Elizabeth J.; Van't Veer, Laura J.; Vanderstichele, Adriaan; Vergote, Ignace; Vijai, Joseph; Wang, Qin; Wang-Gohrke, Shan; Weitzel, Jeffrey N.; Wentzensen, Nicolas; Whittemore, Alice S.; Wildiers, Hans; Winqvist, Robert; Wu, Anna H.; Yannoukakos, Drakoulis; Yoon, Sook-Yee; Yu, Jyh-Cherng; Zheng, Wei; Zheng, Ying; Khanna, Kum Kum; Simard, Jacques; Monteiro, Alvaro N.; French, Juliet D.; Couch, Fergus J.; Freedman, Matthew L.; Easton, Douglas F.; Dunning, Alison M.; Pharoah, Paul D.; Edwards, Stacey L.; Chenevix-Trench, Georgia; Antoniou, Antonis C.; Gayther, Simon A.

    2016-01-01

    A locus at 19p13 is associated with breast cancer (BC) and ovarian cancer (OC) risk. Here we analyse 438 SNPs in this region in 46,451 BC and 15,438 OC cases, 15,252 BRCA1 mutation carriers and 73,444 controls and identify 13 candidate causal SNPs associated with serous OC (P=9.2 × 10−20), ER-negative BC (P=1.1 × 10−13), BRCA1-associated BC (P=7.7 × 10−16) and triple negative BC (P-diff=2 × 10−5). Genotype-gene expression associations are identified for candidate target genes ANKLE1 (P=2 × 10−3) and ABHD8 (P<2 × 10−3). Chromosome conformation capture identifies interactions between four candidate SNPs and ABHD8, and luciferase assays indicate six risk alleles increased transactivation of the ADHD8 promoter. Targeted deletion of a region containing risk SNP rs56069439 in a putative enhancer induces ANKLE1 downregulation; and mRNA stability assays indicate functional effects for an ANKLE1 3′-UTR SNP. Altogether, these data suggest that multiple SNPs at 19p13 regulate ABHD8 and perhaps ANKLE1 expression, and indicate common mechanisms underlying breast and ovarian cancer risk. PMID:27601076

  7. The causal link between energy and output growth: Evidence from Markov switching Granger causality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kandemir Kocaaslan, Ozge

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we empirically investigate the causal link between energy consumption and economic growth employing a Markov switching Granger causality analysis. We carry out our investigation using annual U.S. real GDP, total final energy consumption and total primary energy consumption data which cover the period between 1968 and 2010. We find that there are significant changes in the causal relation between energy consumption and economic growth over the sample period under investigation. Our results show that total final energy consumption and total primary energy consumption have significant predictive content for real economic activity in the U.S. economy. Furthermore, the causality running from energy consumption to output growth seems to be strongly apparent particularly during the periods of economic downturn and energy crisis. We also document that output growth has predictive power in explaining total energy consumption. Furthermore, the power of output growth in predicting total energy consumption is found to diminish after the mid of 1980s. - Highlights: • Total energy consumption has predictive content for real economic activity. • The causality from energy to output growth is apparent in the periods of recession. • The causality from energy to output growth is strong in the periods of energy crisis. • Output growth has predictive power in explaining total energy consumption. • The power of output growth in explaining energy diminishes after the mid of 1980s

  8. Causal inference based on counterfactuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Höfler M

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The counterfactual or potential outcome model has become increasingly standard for causal inference in epidemiological and medical studies. Discussion This paper provides an overview on the counterfactual and related approaches. A variety of conceptual as well as practical issues when estimating causal effects are reviewed. These include causal interactions, imperfect experiments, adjustment for confounding, time-varying exposures, competing risks and the probability of causation. It is argued that the counterfactual model of causal effects captures the main aspects of causality in health sciences and relates to many statistical procedures. Summary Counterfactuals are the basis of causal inference in medicine and epidemiology. Nevertheless, the estimation of counterfactual differences pose several difficulties, primarily in observational studies. These problems, however, reflect fundamental barriers only when learning from observations, and this does not invalidate the counterfactual concept.

  9. Causal Reasoning with Mental Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-08

    mreasoner/. 445 In broad terms, three strands of evidence corroborate the model theory of causal deductions. The 446 first strand of evidence bears ...models and causal reasoning Sangeet Khemlani et al. 13 She will not gain weight. 459 Will she not eat protein? 460 The results therefore bear out the... Adele Goldberg, Catrinel Haught, Max Lotstein, Marco Ragni, and Greg 821 Trafton for helpful criticisms. 822 Khemlani et al. Causal reasoning with

  10. Causality Statistical Perspectives and Applications

    CERN Document Server

    Berzuini, Carlo; Bernardinell, Luisa

    2012-01-01

    A state of the art volume on statistical causality Causality: Statistical Perspectives and Applications presents a wide-ranging collection of seminal contributions by renowned experts in the field, providing a thorough treatment of all aspects of statistical causality. It covers the various formalisms in current use, methods for applying them to specific problems, and the special requirements of a range of examples from medicine, biology and economics to political science. This book:Provides a clear account and comparison of formal languages, concepts and models for statistical causality. Addr

  11. Defining the Locus of Developmental Differences in Children's Causal Reasoning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siegler, Robert S.

    1975-01-01

    Five experiments were performed in the area of children's causal reasoning to validate a previously reported developmental difference, to examine the role of a possible mediating mechanism, and to test a number of competing theoretical interpretations. (GO)

  12. Fracture mechanics in new designed power module under thermo-mechanical loads

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Durand Camille

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Thermo-mechanically induced failure is a major reliability issue in the microelectronic industry. On this account, a new type of Assembly Interconnected Technology used to connect MOSFETs in power modules has been developed. The reliability is increased by using a copper clip soldered on the top side of the chip, avoiding the use of aluminium wire bonds, often responsible for the failure of the device. Thus the new designed MOSFET package does not follow the same failure mechanisms as standard modules. Thermal and power cycling tests were performed on these new packages and resulting failures were analyzed. Thermo-mechanical simulations including cracks in the aluminium metallization and intermetallics (IMC were performed using Finite Element Analysis in order to better understand crack propagation and module behaviour.

  13. Structural Equations and Causal Explanations: Some Challenges for Causal SEM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markus, Keith A.

    2010-01-01

    One common application of structural equation modeling (SEM) involves expressing and empirically investigating causal explanations. Nonetheless, several aspects of causal explanation that have an impact on behavioral science methodology remain poorly understood. It remains unclear whether applications of SEM should attempt to provide complete…

  14. Causation or only correlation? Application of causal inference graphs for evaluating causality in nano-QSAR models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sizochenko, Natalia; Gajewicz, Agnieszka; Leszczynski, Jerzy; Puzyn, Tomasz

    2016-03-01

    In this paper, we suggest that causal inference methods could be efficiently used in Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationships (QSAR) modeling as additional validation criteria within quality evaluation of the model. Verification of the relationships between descriptors and toxicity or other activity in the QSAR model has a vital role in understanding the mechanisms of action. The well-known phrase ``correlation does not imply causation'' reflects insight statistically correlated with the endpoint descriptor may not cause the emergence of this endpoint. Hence, paradigmatic shifts must be undertaken when moving from traditional statistical correlation analysis to causal analysis of multivariate data. Methods of causal discovery have been applied for broader physical insight into mechanisms of action and interpretation of the developed nano-QSAR models. Previously developed nano-QSAR models for toxicity of 17 nano-sized metal oxides towards E. coli bacteria have been validated by means of the causality criteria. Using the descriptors confirmed by the causal technique, we have developed new models consistent with the straightforward causal-reasoning account. It was proven that causal inference methods are able to provide a more robust mechanistic interpretation of the developed nano-QSAR models.In this paper, we suggest that causal inference methods could be efficiently used in Quantitative Structure-Activity Relationships (QSAR) modeling as additional validation criteria within quality evaluation of the model. Verification of the relationships between descriptors and toxicity or other activity in the QSAR model has a vital role in understanding the mechanisms of action. The well-known phrase ``correlation does not imply causation'' reflects insight statistically correlated with the endpoint descriptor may not cause the emergence of this endpoint. Hence, paradigmatic shifts must be undertaken when moving from traditional statistical correlation analysis to causal

  15. Papular urticaria: A review of causal agents in Colombia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lozano, Ana Milena; López, Juan Felipe; Zakzuk, Josefina; García, Elizabeth

    2016-12-01

    Papular urticaria is a chronic allergic reaction induced by insect bites, which is common in the tropics. The objective of this review was to deepen on epidemiological and immunological aspects of this disease, focused on data published in Latin American countries.We conducted a non-systematic review of the literature through electronic search on the epidemiology of papular urticaria, the entomological characteristics of the causative agents and associated immunological mechanisms.Several reports from medical centers suggest that papular urticaria is common in Latin America. Only one epidemiological survey designed to estimate prevalence of papular urticaria has been published, reporting that about a quarter of children under six years of age is affected by this condition in Bogotá. There is evidence on the causal relationship among exposure to indoor fleas, poverty and papular urticaria in Bogotá, a representative city of the Andean altitudes. Information about causal insects in tropical warmer areas is scarce, although from clinical reports Aedes aegypti and Culex quienquefasciatus appear to be the most common. Th2 cellular-mediated mechanisms are involved in its pathogenesis, which explains its delayed hypersensitivity. The role of immunoglobulin E is not clear in this disease. Insect-derived antigens directly involved in papular urticaria etiology are unknown. However, it is possible that common molecules among causal insects mediate cross-reactive reactions, such as Cte f 2 allergen, found in cat fleas, and its counterparts in mosquitoes.Papular urticaria is a frequent disease in Latin America that should be further investigated. Immunological characterization of the molecular components that cause this condition may solve questions about its pathogenesis.

  16. Re-thinking local causality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Friederich, Simon

    There is widespread belief in a tension between quantum theory and special relativity, motivated by the idea that quantum theory violates J. S. Bell's criterion of local causality, which is meant to implement the causal structure of relativistic space-time. This paper argues that if one takes the

  17. Expert Causal Reasoning and Explanation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuipers, Benjamin

    The relationship between cognitive psychologists and researchers in artificial intelligence carries substantial benefits for both. An ongoing investigation in causal reasoning in medical problem solving systems illustrates this interaction. This paper traces a dialectic of sorts in which three different types of causal resaoning for medical…

  18. Introduction to causal dynamical triangulations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Görlich, Andrzej

    2013-01-01

    The method of causal dynamical triangulations is a non-perturbative and background-independent approach to quantum theory of gravity. In this review we present recent results obtained within the four dimensional model of causal dynamical triangulations. We describe the phase structure of the mode...

  19. World oil and agricultural commodity prices: Evidence from nonlinear causality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nazlioglu, Saban

    2011-01-01

    The increasing co-movements between the world oil and agricultural commodity prices have renewed interest in determining price transmission from oil prices to those of agricultural commodities. This study extends the literature on the oil-agricultural commodity prices nexus, which particularly concentrates on nonlinear causal relationships between the world oil and three key agricultural commodity prices (corn, soybeans, and wheat). To this end, the linear causality approach of Toda-Yamamoto and the nonparametric causality method of Diks-Panchenko are applied to the weekly data spanning from 1994 to 2010. The linear causality analysis indicates that the oil prices and the agricultural commodity prices do not influence each other, which supports evidence on the neutrality hypothesis. In contrast, the nonlinear causality analysis shows that: (i) there are nonlinear feedbacks between the oil and the agricultural prices, and (ii) there is a persistent unidirectional nonlinear causality running from the oil prices to the corn and to the soybeans prices. The findings from the nonlinear causality analysis therefore provide clues for better understanding the recent dynamics of the agricultural commodity prices and some policy implications for policy makers, farmers, and global investors. This study also suggests the directions for future studies. - Research highlights: → This study determines the price transmission mechanisms between the world oil and three key agricultural commodity prices (corn, soybeans, and wheat). → The linear and nonlinear cointegration and causality methods are carried out. → The linear causality analysis supports evidence on the neutrality hypothesis. → The nonlinear causality analysis shows that there is a persistent unidirectional causality from the oil prices to the corn and to the soybeans prices.

  20. Paradoxical Behavior of Granger Causality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witt, Annette; Battaglia, Demian; Gail, Alexander

    2013-03-01

    Granger causality is a standard tool for the description of directed interaction of network components and is popular in many scientific fields including econometrics, neuroscience and climate science. For time series that can be modeled as bivariate auto-regressive processes we analytically derive an expression for spectrally decomposed Granger Causality (SDGC) and show that this quantity depends only on two out of four groups of model parameters. Then we present examples of such processes whose SDGC expose paradoxical behavior in the sense that causality is high for frequency ranges with low spectral power. For avoiding misinterpretations of Granger causality analysis we propose to complement it by partial spectral analysis. Our findings are illustrated by an example from brain electrophysiology. Finally, we draw implications for the conventional definition of Granger causality. Bernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience Goettingen

  1. Interactivity effects in social media marketing on brand engagement: an investigation of underlying mechanisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Antheunis, M.L.; van Noort, G.; Eisend, M.; Langner, T.

    2011-01-01

    Although, SNS advertising spending increases, research on SNS campaigning is still underexposed. First, this study aims to investigate the effect of SNS campaign interactivity on the receivers brand engagement, taking four underlying mechanisms into account (brand identification, campaign

  2. Causal aspects of diffraction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crawford, G.N.

    1981-01-01

    The analysis is directed at a causal description of photon diffraction, which is explained in terms of a wave exerting real forces and providing actual guidance to each quantum of energy. An undulatory PSI wave is associated with each photon, and this wave is assumed to imply more than an informative probability function, so that it actually carries real energy, in much the same way as does an electro-magnetic wave. Whether or not it may be in some way related to the electromagnetic wave is left as a matter of on-going concern. A novel application of the concept of a minimum energy configuration is utilized; that is, a system of energy quanta seeks out relative positions and orientations of least mutual energy, much as an electron seeks its Bohr radius as a position of least mutual energy. Thus the concept implies more a guiding interaction of the PSI waves than an interfering cancellation of these waves. Similar concepts have been suggested by L. de Broglie and D. Bohm

  3. Clear message for causality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steinberg, Aephraim M. [Institute for Experimental Physics, University of Vienna, Vienna (Austria)

    2003-12-01

    Experiment confirms that information cannot be transmitted faster than the speed of light. Ever since Einstein stated that nothing can travel faster than light, physicists have delighted in finding exceptions. One after another, observations of such 'superluminal' propagation have been made. However, while some image or pattern- such as the motion of a spotlight projected on a distant wall - might have appeared to travel faster than light, it seemed that there was no way to use the superluminal effect to transmit energy or information. In recent years, the superluminal propagation of light pulses through certain media has led to renewed controversy. In 1995, for example, Guenther Nimtz of the University of Cologne encoded Mozart's 40th Symphony on a microwave beam, which he claimed to have transmitted at a speed faster than light. Others maintain that such a violation of Einstein's speed limit would wreak havoc on our most fundamental ideas about causality, allowing an effect to precede its cause. Relativity teaches us that sending a signal faster than light would be equivalent to sending it backwards in time. (U.K.)

  4. micro-mechanical experimental investigation and modelling of strain and damage of argillaceous rocks under combined hydric and mechanical loads

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, L.

    2012-01-01

    The hydro-mechanical behavior of argillaceous rocks, which are possible host rocks for underground radioactive nuclear waste storage, is investigated by means of micro-mechanical experimental investigations and modellings. Strain fields at the micrometric scale of the composite structure of this rock, are measured by the combination of environmental scanning electron microscopy, in situ testing and digital image correlation technique. The evolution of argillaceous rocks under pure hydric loading is first investigated. The strain field is strongly heterogeneous and manifests anisotropy. The observed nonlinear deformation at high relative humidity (RH) is related not only to damage, but also to the nonlinear swelling of the clay mineral itself, controlled by different local mechanisms depending on RH. Irreversible deformations are observed during hydric cycles, as well as a network of microcracks located in the bulk of the clay matrix and/or at the inclusion-matrix interface. Second, the local deformation field of the material under combined hydric and mechanical loadings is quantified. Three types of deformation bands are evidenced under mechanical loading, either normal to stress direction (compaction), parallel (microcracking) or inclined (shear). Moreover, they are strongly controlled by the water content of the material: shear bands are in particular prone to appear at high RH states. In view of understanding the mechanical interactions a local scale, the material is modeled as a composite made of non-swelling elastic inclusions embedded in an elastic swelling clay matrix. The internal stress field induced by swelling strain incompatibilities between inclusions and matrix, as well as the overall deformation, is numerically computed at equilibrium but also during the transient stage associated with a moisture gradient. An analytical micro-mechanical model based on Eshelby's solution is proposed. In addition, 2D finite element computations are performed. Results

  5. Microbial Mechanisms Underlying Acidity-induced Reduction in Soil Respiration Under Nitrogen Fertilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niu, S.; Li, Y.

    2016-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystems are receiving increasing amounts of reactive nitrogen (N) due to anthropogenic activities, which largely changes soil respiration and its feedback to climate change. N enrichment can not only increase N availability but also induce soil acidification, both may affect soil microbial activity and root growth with a consequent impact on soil respiration. However, it remains unclear whether elevated N availability or soil acidity has greater impact on soil respiration (Rs). We conducted a manipulative experiment to simulate N enrichment (10 g m-2 yr-1 NH4NO3) and soil acidity (0.552 mol H+ m-2 yr-1 sulfuric acid) and studied their effects on Rs and its components in a temperate forest. Our results showed that soil pH was reduced by 0.2 under N addition or acid addition treatment. Acid addition significantly decreased autotrophic respiration (Ra) and heterotrophic respiration (Rh) by 21.5% and 22.7% in 2014, 34.8% and 21.9% in 2015, respectively, resulting in a reduction of Rs by 22.2% in 2014 and 26.1% in 2015. Nitrogen enrichment reduced Ra, Rh, Rs by 21.9%, 16.2%, 18.6% in 2014 and 22.1%, 5.9%, 11.7% in 2015, respectively. The reductions of Rs and its components were attributable to decrease of fine root biomass, microbial biomass, and cellulose degrading enzymes. N addition did not change microbial community but acid addition increased both fungal and arbuscular mycorrhiza fungi PLFAs, and N plus acid addition significantly enhanced fungal to bacterial ratio. All the hydrolase enzymes were reduced more by soil acidity (43-50%) than nitrogen addition (30-39%). Structural equation model showed that soil acidity played more important role than N availability in reducing soil respiration mainly by changing microbial extracellular enzymes. We therefore suggest that N deposition induced indirect effect of soil acidification on microbial properties is critical and should be taken into account to better understand and predict ecosystem C cycling in

  6. Cognitive mechanisms underlying disorganization of thought in a genetic syndrome (47,XXY)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Rijn, Sophie; Aleman, Andre; De Sonneville, Leo; Swaab, Hanna

    Because of the risk for development of psychopathology such as psychotic symptoms, it has been suggested that studying men with the XXY karyotype may help in the search for underlying cognitive, neural and genetic mechanisms. The aim of this study was to identify cognitive mechanisms that may

  7. STATIC AND DYNAMIC ANALYSIS UNDER MECHANICAL AND THERMAL LOADS OF THE DOUBLE SCARA ROBOT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iosif TEMPEA

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents a synthesis of the Double SCARA Robot modelling, leading to an optimal solution, from workspace point of view, as well as precision and stability of the endeffector in performing the planned trajectory. For the design of the final mechanism CATIA software has been used, as well as NASTRAN/PATRAN software, for the mechanism analysis under mechanical and thermal loads.

  8. The effects of different size gold nanoparticles on mechanical properties of vascular smooth muscle cells under mechanical stretching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kieu, Tri Minh

    Nanotechnology is an emerging and promising frontier for medicine and biomedical research due to its potential for applications such as drug delivery, imaging enhancement, and cancer treatment. While these materials may possess significant possibilities, the effects of these particles in the body and how the particles affect the cells is not fully understood. In this study, vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) will be exposed to 5 and 20 nm diameter citrate AuNPs under mechanical conditions. The cytotoxicity properties of these particles will be investigated using LDH and MTT assays. Atomic force microscopy will be used to study how the size of the nanoparticles affect the mechanical properties of the VSMCs. Immunofluorescence staining for alpha actin will also be performed to enhance understanding of the phenotypic shift. The LDH and MTT cytotoxicity assay results demonstrated that neither 5 nor 20 nm diameter nanoparticles are cytotoxic to the cells. However, the mechanical properties and cell morphology of the VSMCs was altered. Under static conditions, both AuNP treatments decreased the mechanical properties of the cells. The size of the nanoparticles had a softening effect on elastic modulus of the cell and sign of a synthetic phenotype was observed. The VSMCs subjected to mechanical stretching exhibited higher elastic modulus compared to the static experimental groups. Again, both AuNPs treatments decreased the mechanical properties of the cells and signs of more synthetic phenotype was seen. However, the size of the nanoparticles did not have any influence on cell's elastic modulus unlike the static treated cells. The mechanical testing condition provided a better look at how these particles would affect the cells in vivo. While the nanoparticles are not cytotoxic to the VSMCs, they are altering the mechanical properties and phenotype of the cell.

  9. Causal inference with missing exposure information: Methods and applications to an obstetric study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhiwei; Liu, Wei; Zhang, Bo; Tang, Li; Zhang, Jun

    2016-10-01

    Causal inference in observational studies is frequently challenged by the occurrence of missing data, in addition to confounding. Motivated by the Consortium on Safe Labor, a large observational study of obstetric labor practice and birth outcomes, this article focuses on the problem of missing exposure information in a causal analysis of observational data. This problem can be approached from different angles (i.e. missing covariates and causal inference), and useful methods can be obtained by drawing upon the available techniques and insights in both areas. In this article, we describe and compare a collection of methods based on different modeling assumptions, under standard assumptions for missing data (i.e. missing-at-random and positivity) and for causal inference with complete data (i.e. no unmeasured confounding and another positivity assumption). These methods involve three models: one for treatment assignment, one for the dependence of outcome on treatment and covariates, and one for the missing data mechanism. In general, consistent estimation of causal quantities requires correct specification of at least two of the three models, although there may be some flexibility as to which two models need to be correct. Such flexibility is afforded by doubly robust estimators adapted from the missing covariates literature and the literature on causal inference with complete data, and by a newly developed triply robust estimator that is consistent if any two of the three models are correct. The methods are applied to the Consortium on Safe Labor data and compared in a simulation study mimicking the Consortium on Safe Labor. © The Author(s) 2013.

  10. Causal boundary for stably causal space-times

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Racz, I.

    1987-12-01

    The usual boundary constructions for space-times often yield an unsatisfactory boundary set. This problem is reviewed and a new solution is proposed. An explicit identification rule is given on the set of the ideal points of the space-time. This construction leads to a satisfactory boundary point set structure for stably causal space-times. The topological properties of the resulting causal boundary construction are examined. For the stably causal space-times each causal curve has a unique endpoint on the boundary set according to the extended Alexandrov topology. The extension of the space-time through the boundary is discussed. To describe the singularities the defined boundary sets have to be separated into two disjoint sets. (D.Gy.) 8 refs

  11. Functional equations with causal operators

    CERN Document Server

    Corduneanu, C

    2003-01-01

    Functional equations encompass most of the equations used in applied science and engineering: ordinary differential equations, integral equations of the Volterra type, equations with delayed argument, and integro-differential equations of the Volterra type. The basic theory of functional equations includes functional differential equations with causal operators. Functional Equations with Causal Operators explains the connection between equations with causal operators and the classical types of functional equations encountered by mathematicians and engineers. It details the fundamentals of linear equations and stability theory and provides several applications and examples.

  12. Comparison of mechanical and thermodynamic properties of fcc and bcc titanium under high pressure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yongmei; Zhao, Yuhong; Hou, Hua; Wen, Zhiqin; Duan, Meiling

    2018-02-01

    The mechanical and thermodynamic properties of fcc and bcc Ti have been discussed based on the first-principles calculation combined with the quasi-harmonic Debye model. We find that the bulk modulus B, shear modulus G, Young’s modulus E of fcc Ti are larger, while Poisson’s ratio σ is smaller than that of bcc Ti under the same pressure, which indicates the better mechanical performance of fcc Ti compared with bcc Ti. The values of B/G and σ indicate that mechanically stable fcc structure is much less ductile than the bcc structure, while mechanically metastable fcc structure has better ductility than stable bcc structure under high pressure. The normalized volume, isothermal bulk modulus, heat capacity, volume thermal expansion coefficient and Debye temperature under pressure and temperature for fcc and bcc Ti are predicted.

  13. Spatial Causality. An application to the Deforestation Process in Bolivia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javier Aliaga

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper analyses the causes of deforestation for a representative set of Bolivian municipalities. The literature on environmental economics insists on the importance of physical and social factors. We focus on the last group of variables. Our objective is to identify causal mechanisms between these factors of risk and the problem of deforestation. To this end, we present a testing strategy for spatial causality, based on a sequence of Lagrange Multipliers. The results that we obtain for the Bolivian case confirm only partially the traditional view of the problem of deforestation. Indeed, we only find unequivocal signs of causality in relation to the structure of property rights.

  14. Mechanical behaviour and microstructural evolution of alloy 800H under biaxial cyclic loading

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dolabella Portella, P.; Feng Jiao; Oesterle, W.; Ziebs, J.

    1999-01-01

    The mechanical behaviour of alloy 800H under biaxial cyclic loading was investigated at room temperature and at 800 C. The low-cycle fatigue experiments were carried out using tubular specimens under axial and torsional loading with constant total equivalent strain amplitude following either proportional or nonproportional loading paths. The cyclic hardening observed under nonproportional loading was clearly higher than that under proportional loading. The extra hardening due to the nonproportional loading path was more pronounced at room temperature. The evolution of the dislocation structure was characterized by transmission electron microscopy of specimens after interrupted fatigue tests. The changes in the dislocation structure and the precipitation phenomena are in accordance with the observed mechanical behaviour of the specimens. Twinning was observed in very few grains of some specimens and does not influence the extra hardening under nonproportional loading, martensite was not detected in any specimen. (orig.)

  15. Assessing statistical significance in causal graphs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chindelevitch, Leonid; Loh, Po-Ru; Enayetallah, Ahmed; Berger, Bonnie; Ziemek, Daniel

    2012-02-20

    Causal graphs are an increasingly popular tool for the analysis of biological datasets. In particular, signed causal graphs--directed graphs whose edges additionally have a sign denoting upregulation or downregulation--can be used to model regulatory networks within a cell. Such models allow prediction of downstream effects of regulation of biological entities; conversely, they also enable inference of causative agents behind observed expression changes. However, due to their complex nature, signed causal graph models present special challenges with respect to assessing statistical significance. In this paper we frame and solve two fundamental computational problems that arise in practice when computing appropriate null distributions for hypothesis testing. First, we show how to compute a p-value for agreement between observed and model-predicted classifications of gene transcripts as upregulated, downregulated, or neither. Specifically, how likely are the classifications to agree to the same extent under the null distribution of the observed classification being randomized? This problem, which we call "Ternary Dot Product Distribution" owing to its mathematical form, can be viewed as a generalization of Fisher's exact test to ternary variables. We present two computationally efficient algorithms for computing the Ternary Dot Product Distribution and investigate its combinatorial structure analytically and numerically to establish computational complexity bounds.Second, we develop an algorithm for efficiently performing random sampling of causal graphs. This enables p-value computation under a different, equally important null distribution obtained by randomizing the graph topology but keeping fixed its basic structure: connectedness and the positive and negative in- and out-degrees of each vertex. We provide an algorithm for sampling a graph from this distribution uniformly at random. We also highlight theoretical challenges unique to signed causal graphs

  16. Consciousness and the "Causal Paradox"

    OpenAIRE

    Velmans, Max

    1996-01-01

    Viewed from a first-person perspective consciousness appears to be necessary for complex, novel human activity - but viewed from a third-person perspective consciousness appears to play no role in the activity of brains, producing a "causal paradox". To resolve this paradox one needs to distinguish consciousness of processing from consciousness accompanying processing or causing processing. Accounts of consciousness/brain causal interactions switch between first- and third-person perspectives...

  17. An investigation of the mechanism underlying teacher aggression : Testing I3 theory and the General Aggression Model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Montuoro, Paul; Mainhard, Tim

    2017-01-01

    Background: Considerable research has investigated the deleterious effects of teachers responding aggressively to students who misbehave, but the mechanism underlying this dysfunctional behaviour remains unknown. Aims: This study investigated whether the mechanism underlying teacher aggression

  18. Tensile mechanical behavior of hollow and filled carbon nanotubes under tension or combined tension-torsion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Byeong-Woo; Lim, Jang-Keun; Sinnott, Susan B.

    2007-01-01

    The tensile mechanical behavior of hollow and filled single-walled carbon nanotubes under tension or combined tension-torsion is examined using classical molecular dynamics simulations. These simulations indicate that the tensile strength under combined tension-torsion can be increased by filling the carbon nanotubes, and the amount of this increase depends on the kind of filling material. They also predict that the tensile strength under combined tension-torsion decreases linearly under applied torsion. The tensile strength can be modified by adjusting the system temperature and through chemical functionalization to the carbon nanotube walls.

  19. [Therapy of polyneuropathies. Causal and symptomatic].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller-Felber, W

    2001-05-28

    In the first instance, polyneuropathies are treated causally. The most common underlying cause is diabetes mellitus or alcohol abuse. In a large number of patients with polyneuropathy, however, the underlying cause cannot be definitively identified. For these--but equally for patients with etiologically clear polyneuropathy--a stock-taking of clinical symptoms should be carried out and, where indicated, symptomatic treatment initiated. In addition to medication aimed at combating pain, muscular spasm, autonomic functional disorders, and for the prevention of thrombosis, physical measures (physiotherapy, foot care, orthopedic shoes) are of primary importance.

  20. How diagnostic tests help to disentangle the mechanisms underlying neuropathic pain symptoms in painful neuropathies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truini, Andrea; Cruccu, Giorgio

    2016-02-01

    Neuropathic pain, ie, pain arising directly from a lesion or disease affecting the somatosensory afferent pathway, manifests with various symptoms, the commonest being ongoing burning pain, electrical shock-like sensations, and dynamic mechanical allodynia. Reliable insights into the mechanisms underlying neuropathic pain symptoms come from diagnostic tests documenting and quantifying somatosensory afferent pathway damage in patients with painful neuropathies. Neurophysiological investigation and skin biopsy studies suggest that ongoing burning pain primarily reflects spontaneous activity in nociceptive-fiber pathways. Electrical shock-like sensations presumably arise from high-frequency ectopic bursts generated in demyelinated, nonnociceptive, Aβ fibers. Although the mechanisms underlying dynamic mechanical allodynia remain debatable, normally innocuous stimuli might cause pain by activating spared and sensitized nociceptive afferents. Extending the mechanistic approach to neuropathic pain symptoms might advance targeted therapy for the individual patient and improve testing for new drugs.

  1. Visualization of hot spot formation in energetic materials under periodic mechanical excitation using phosphor thermography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casey, Alex; Fenoglio, Gabriel; Detrinidad, Humberto

    2017-06-01

    Under mechanical excitation, energy is known to localize within an energetic material resulting in `hot spot' formation. While many formation mechanisms have been proposed, additional insight to heat generation mechanisms, the effect of binder/crystal interfaces, and predication capabilities can be gained by quantifying the initiation and growth of the hot spots. Phosphor thermography is a well established temperature sensing technique wherein an object's temperature is obtained by collecting the temperature dependent luminescence of an optically excited phosphor. Herein, the phosphor thermography technique has been applied to Dow Corning Sylgard® 184/octahydro 1,3,5,7 tetranitro 1,3,5,7 tetrazocine (HMX) composite materials under mechanical excitation in order to visualize the evolution of the temperature field, and thus hot spot formation, within the binder. Funded by AFOSR. Supported by the Department of Defense (DoD) through the National Defense Science & Engineering Graduate Fellowship (NDSEG) Program.

  2. Causal Learning in Gambling Disorder: Beyond the Illusion of Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perales, José C; Navas, Juan F; Ruiz de Lara, Cristian M; Maldonado, Antonio; Catena, Andrés

    2017-06-01

    Causal learning is the ability to progressively incorporate raw information about dependencies between events, or between one's behavior and its outcomes, into beliefs of the causal structure of the world. In spite of the fact that some cognitive biases in gambling disorder can be described as alterations of causal learning involving gambling-relevant cues, behaviors, and outcomes, general causal learning mechanisms in gamblers have not been systematically investigated. In the present study, we compared gambling disorder patients against controls in an instrumental causal learning task. Evidence of illusion of control, namely, overestimation of the relationship between one's behavior and an uncorrelated outcome, showed up only in gamblers with strong current symptoms. Interestingly, this effect was part of a more complex pattern, in which gambling disorder patients manifested a poorer ability to discriminate between null and positive contingencies. Additionally, anomalies were related to gambling severity and current gambling disorder symptoms. Gambling-related biases, as measured by a standard psychometric tool, correlated with performance in the causal learning task, but not in the expected direction. Indeed, performance of gamblers with stronger biases tended to resemble the one of controls, which could imply that anomalies of causal learning processes play a role in gambling disorder, but do not seem to underlie gambling-specific biases, at least in a simple, direct way.

  3. A Cross-Cultural Approach to Psychological Mechanisms Underlying Emotional Reactions to Music

    OpenAIRE

    Barradas, Gonçalo

    2017-01-01

    Music plays a crucial role in everyday life by enabling listeners to seek individual emotional experiences. To explain why such emotions occur, we must understand the underlying process that mediates between surface-level features of the music and aroused emotions. This thesis aimed to investigate how musical emotions are mediated by psychological mechanisms from a cross-cultural perspective. Study I manipulated four mechanisms by selecting ecologically valid pieces of music that featured inf...

  4. Elucidation of the molecular mechanisms underlying adverse reactions associated with a kinase inhibitor using systems toxicology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amemiya, Takahiro; Honma, Masashi; Kariya, Yoshiaki; Ghosh, Samik; Kitano, Hiroaki; Kurachi, Yoshihisa; Fujita, Ken-Ichi; Sasaki, Yasutsuna; Homma, Yukio; Abernethy, Darrel R; Kume, Haruki; Suzuki, Hiroshi

    2015-01-01

    Targeted kinase inhibitors are an important class of agents in anticancer therapeutics, but their limited tolerability hampers their clinical performance. Identification of the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of adverse reactions will be helpful in establishing a rational method for the management of clinically adverse reactions. Here, we selected sunitinib as a model and demonstrated that the molecular mechanisms underlying the adverse reactions associated with kinase inhibitors can efficiently be identified using a systems toxicological approach. First, toxicological target candidates were short-listed by comparing the human kinase occupancy profiles of sunitinib and sorafenib, and the molecular mechanisms underlying adverse reactions were predicted by sequential simulations using publicly available mathematical models. Next, to evaluate the probability of these predictions, a clinical observation study was conducted in six patients treated with sunitinib. Finally, mouse experiments were performed for detailed confirmation of the hypothesized molecular mechanisms and to evaluate the efficacy of a proposed countermeasure against adverse reactions to sunitinib. In silico simulations indicated the possibility that sunitinib-mediated off-target inhibition of phosphorylase kinase leads to the generation of oxidative stress in various tissues. Clinical observations of patients and mouse experiments confirmed the validity of this prediction. The simulation further suggested that concomitant use of an antioxidant may prevent sunitinib-mediated adverse reactions, which was confirmed in mouse experiments. A systems toxicological approach successfully predicted the molecular mechanisms underlying clinically adverse reactions associated with sunitinib and was used to plan a rational method for the management of these adverse reactions.

  5. Mechanisms Underlying Stress Fracture and the Influence of Sex and Race/Ethnicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-16-1-0652 TITLE: Mechanisms Underlying Stress Fracture and the Influence of Sex and Race/Ethnicity PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR...5a. CONTRACT NUMBER W81XWH-16-1-0652 Mechanisms Underlying Stress Fracture and the Influence of Sex and Race/Ethnicity 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH...Email addresses: mbouxsei@bidmc.harvard.edu; scaksa@mgh.harvard.edu; serudolph@mgh.harvard.edu ; kpopp@mgh.harvard.edu E-Mail: 5f. WORK UNIT NUMBER 7

  6. Comparative proteomics of peanut gynophore development under dark and mechanical stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yong; Wang, Qingguo; Li, Zhen; Hou, Lei; Dai, Shaojun; Liu, Wei

    2013-12-06

    Peanut (Arachis hypogaea. L) is an important leguminous crop and source of proteins and lipids. It has attracted widespread attention of researchers due to its unique growth habit of geocarpy, which is regulated by geotropism, negative phototropism, and haptotropism. However, the protein expression pattern and molecular regulatory mechanism underlying the physiological processes of peanut remain unknown. In this study, the peanut gynophores under five treatment conditions were used for proteomic analysis, including aerial growth of the gynophores, the gynophores penetrated into the soil, as well as aerial growth of the gynophores under mechanical stimulation, dark, and mechanical stimulation combined with dark. The analysis of protein abundances in peanut gynophores under these conditions were conducted using comparative proteomic approaches. A total of 27 differentially expressed proteins were identified and further classified into nine biological functional groups of stress and defense, carbohydrate and energy metabolism, metabolism, photosynthesis, cell structure, signaling, transcription, protein folding and degradation, and function unknown. By searching gene functions against peanut database, 10 genes with similar annotations were selected as corresponding changed proteins, and their variation trends in gynophores under such growth conditions were further verified using quantitative real-time PCR. Overall, the investigation will benefit to enrich our understanding of the internal mechanisms of peanut gynophore development and lay a foundation for breeding and improving crop varieties and qualities.

  7. Violation of causality in f( T) gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otalora, G.; Rebouças, M. J.

    2017-11-01

    In the standard formulation, the f( T) field equations are not invariant under local Lorentz transformations, and thus the theory does not inherit the causal structure of special relativity. Actually, even locally violation of causality can occur in this formulation of f( T) gravity. A locally Lorentz covariant f( T) gravity theory has been devised recently, and this local causality problem seems to have been overcome. The non-locality question, however, is left open. If gravitation is to be described by this covariant f( T) gravity theory there are a number of issues that ought to be examined in its context, including the question as to whether its field equations allow homogeneous Gödel-type solutions, which necessarily leads to violation of causality on non-local scale. Here, to look into the potentialities and difficulties of the covariant f( T) theories, we examine whether they admit Gödel-type solutions. We take a combination of a perfect fluid with electromagnetic plus a scalar field as source, and determine a general Gödel-type solution, which contains special solutions in which the essential parameter of Gödel-type geometries, m^2, defines any class of homogeneous Gödel-type geometries. We show that solutions of the trigonometric and linear classes (m^2 electromagnetic field matter component. We extended to the context of covariant f( T) gravity a theorem which ensures that any perfect-fluid homogeneous Gödel-type solution defines the same set of Gödel tetrads h_A^{ μ } up to a Lorentz transformation. We also showed that the single massless scalar field generates Gödel-type solution with no closed time-like curves. Even though the covariant f( T) gravity restores Lorentz covariance of the field equations and the local validity of the causality principle, the bare existence of the Gödel-type solutions makes apparent that the covariant formulation of f( T) gravity does not preclude non-local violation of causality in the form of closed time

  8. Reflexivity, Complexity and Causality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Søgaard, Villy

    2008-01-01

    Artiklen (der er under revision) tager sit udgangspunkt i, at samfundsvidenskabernes forskningsgenstand (til forskel fra f.eks. klassisk, newtonsk, fysik) er kendetegnet ved en høj grad af kompleksitet, ved refleksivitet (vores forståelse af samfundet er en del af det), og ved en kausalitet, der ...

  9. Model test study of evaporation mechanism of sand under constant atmospheric condition

    OpenAIRE

    CUI, Yu Jun; DING, Wenqi; SONG, Weikang

    2014-01-01

    The evaporation mechanism of Fontainebleau sand using a large-scale model chamber is studied. First, the evaporation test on a layer of water above sand surface is performed under various atmospheric conditions, validating the performance of the chamber and the calculation method of actual evaporation rate by comparing the calculated and measured cumulative evaporations. Second,the evaporation test on sand without water layer is conducted under constant atmospheric condition. Both the evoluti...

  10. Mechanical behavior of confined self-compacting reinforced concrete circular columns under concentric axial loading

    OpenAIRE

    Khairallah, Fouad

    2013-01-01

    While there is abundant research information on ordinary confined concrete, there are little data on the behavior of Self-Compacting Concrete (SCC) under such condition. Due to higher shrinkage and lower coarse aggregate content of SCC compared to that of Normal Concrete (NC), its composite performance under confined conditions needs more investigation. This paper has been devoted to investigate and compare the mechanical behavior of confined concrete circular columns cast with SCC and NC und...

  11. Ultrastructural changes of cell walls under intense mechanical treatment of selective plant raw material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bychkov, Aleksey L.; Ryabchikova, E.I.; Korolev, K.G.; Lomovsky, O.I.

    2012-01-01

    Structural changes of cell walls under intense mechanical treatment of corn straw and oil-palm fibers were studied by electron and light microscopy. Differences in the character of destruction of plant biomass were revealed, and the dependence of destruction mechanisms on the structure of cell walls and lignin content was demonstrated. We suggest that the high reactivity of the particles of corn straw (about 18% of lignin) after intense mechanical treatment is related to disordering of cell walls and an increase of the surface area, while in the case of oil palm (10% of lignin) the major contribution into an increase in the reactivity is made by an increase of surface area. -- Highlights: ► Structure of cell walls determines the processes of plant materials' destruction. ► Ultrastructure of highly lignified materials strongly disordering by mechanical action. ► Ultrastructure of low-lignified materials is not disordering by mechanical action.

  12. Structural and Mechanical Properties of Intermediate Filaments under Extreme Conditions and Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Zhao

    Intermediate filaments are one of the three major components of the cytoskeleton in eukaryotic cells. It was discovered during the recent decades that intermediate filament proteins play key roles to reinforce cells subjected to large-deformation as well as participate in signal transduction. However, it is still poorly understood how the nanoscopic structure, as well as the biochemical properties of these protein molecules contribute to their biomechanical functions. In this research we investigate the material function of intermediate filaments under various extreme mechanical conditions as well as disease states. We use a full atomistic model and study its response to mechanical stresses. Learning from the mechanical response obtained from atomistic simulations, we build mesoscopic models following the finer-trains-coarser principles. By using this multiple-scale model, we present a detailed analysis of the mechanical properties and associated deformation mechanisms of intermediate filament network. We reveal the mechanism of a transition from alpha-helices to beta-sheets with subsequent intermolecular sliding under mechanical force, which has been inferred previously from experimental results. This nanoscale mechanism results in a characteristic nonlinear force-extension curve, which leads to a delocalization of mechanical energy and prevents catastrophic fracture. This explains how intermediate filament can withstand extreme mechanical deformation of > 1 00% strain despite the presence of structural defects. We combine computational and experimental techniques to investigate the molecular mechanism of Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome, a premature aging disease. We find that the mutated lamin tail .domain is more compact and stable than the normal one. This altered structure and stability may enhance the association of intermediate filaments with the nuclear membrane, providing a molecular mechanism of the disease. We study the nuclear membrane association

  13. Causality and analyticity in optics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nussenzveig, H.M.

    In order to provide an overall picture of the broad range of optical phenomena that are directly linked with the concepts of causality and analyticity, the following topics are briefly reviewed, emphasizing recent developments: 1) Derivation of dispersion relations for the optical constants of general linear media from causality. Application to the theory of natural optical activity. 2) Derivation of sum rules for the optical constants from causality and from the short-time response function (asymptotic high-frequency behavior). Average spectral behavior of optical media. Applications. 3) Role of spectral conditions. Analytic properties of coherence functions in quantum optics. Reconstruction theorem.4) Phase retrieval problems. 5) Inverse scattering problems. 6) Solution of nonlinear evolution equations in optics by inverse scattering methods. Application to self-induced transparency. Causality in nonlinear wave propagation. 7) Analytic continuation in frequency and angular momentum. Complex singularities. Resonances and natural-mode expansions. Regge poles. 8) Wigner's causal inequality. Time delay. Spatial displacements in total reflection. 9) Analyticity in diffraction theory. Complex angular momentum theory of Mie scattering. Diffraction as a barrier tunnelling effect. Complex trajectories in optics. (Author) [pt

  14. Hierarchical organisation of causal graphs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dziopa, P.

    1993-01-01

    This paper deals with the design of a supervision system using a hierarchy of models formed by graphs, in which the variables are the nodes and the causal relations between the variables of the arcs. To obtain a representation of the variables evolutions which contains only the relevant features of their real evolutions, the causal relations are completed with qualitative transfer functions (QTFs) which produce roughly the behaviour of the classical transfer functions. Major improvements have been made in the building of the hierarchical organization. First, the basic variables of the uppermost level and the causal relations between them are chosen. The next graph is built by adding intermediary variables to the upper graph. When the undermost graph has been built, the transfer functions parameters corresponding to its causal relations are identified. The second task consists in the upwelling of the information from the undermost graph to the uppermost one. A fusion procedure of the causal relations has been designed to compute the QFTs relevant for each level. This procedure aims to reduce the number of parameters needed to represent an evolution at a high level of abstraction. These techniques have been applied to the hierarchical modelling of nuclear process. (authors). 8 refs., 12 figs

  15. Eventos Quânticos e Reducionismo Causal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osvaldo Pessoa Jr.

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/1808-1711.2013v17n3p365   This paper is the first step in an investigation of whether microscopic events can be reduced to a mereological composition of elementary events, especially in biological systems. The hypothesis is made that, between events in which quanta are exchanged, there is causal flow, but strictly speaking no events take place. A causal event is characterized by the possibility of an intervention or manipulation. Thus, three types of quantum mechanical events may be found: (1 detection of a quantum of energy; (2 confinement by an apparatus in a Glauber coherent state; (3 null result measurement (without exchange of quanta. The paper explores these three types of elementary causal events, e sets forth as the next step the investigation of the causal events involved in the action of a molecular motor.

  16. Nonlinear Dynamic Analysis of Telescopic Mechanism for Truss Structure Bridge Inspection Vehicle Under Pedestrian Excitation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenwen Sui

    Full Text Available Abstract Nonlinear dynamic analysis of an axially moving telescopic mechanism for truss structure bridge inspection vehicle under pedestrian excitation is carried out. A biomechanically inspired inverted-pendulum model is utilized to simplify the pedestrian. The nonlinear equations of motion for the beam-pedestrian system are derived using the Hamilton's principle. The equations are transformed into two ordinary differential equations by applying the Galerkin's method at the first two orders. The solutions to the equations are acquired by using the Newmark-β method associated with the Newton-Raphson method. The time-dependent feature of the eigenfunctions for the two beams are taken into consideration in the solutions. Accordingly, the equations of motion for a simplified system, in which the pedestrian is regarded as moving cart, are given. In the numerical examples, dynamic responses of the telescopic mechanism in eight conditions of different beam-telescoping and pedestrian-moving directions are simulated. Comparisons between the vibrations of the beams under pedestrian excitation and corresponding moving cart are carried out to investigate the influence of the pedestrian excitation on the telescopic mechanism. The results show that the displacement of the telescopic mechanism under pedestrian excitation is smaller than that under moving cart especially when the pedestrian approaches the beams end. Additionally, compared with moving cart, the pedestrian excitation can effectively strengthen the vibration when the beam extension is small or when the pedestrian is close to the beams end.

  17. Mechanisms underlying prorenin actions on hypothalamic neurons implicated in cardiometabolic control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soledad Pitra

    2016-10-01

    Conclusions: We identified novel neuronal targets and cellular mechanisms underlying PR/PRR actions in critical hypothalamic neurons involved in cardiometabolic regulation. This fundamental mechanistic information regarding central PR/PRR actions is essential for the development of novel RAS-based therapeutic targets for the treatment of cardiometabolic disorders in obesity and hypertension.

  18. Unraveling the mechanisms underlying postural instability in Parkinson's disease using dynamic posturography

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nonnekes, J.H.; Kam, D. de; Geurts, A.C.; Weerdesteijn, V.G.M.; Bloem, B.R.

    2013-01-01

    Postural instability, one of the cardinal symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD), has devastating consequences for affected patients. Better strategies to prevent falls are needed, but this calls for an improved understanding of the complex mechanisms underlying postural instability. We must also

  19. The Mediated MIMIC Model for Understanding the Underlying Mechanism of DIF

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Ying; Shao, Can; Lathrop, Quinn N.

    2016-01-01

    Due to its flexibility, the multiple-indicator, multiple-causes (MIMIC) model has become an increasingly popular method for the detection of differential item functioning (DIF). In this article, we propose the mediated MIMIC model method to uncover the underlying mechanism of DIF. This method extends the usual MIMIC model by including one variable…

  20. Deformation Microstructures and Creep Mechanisms in Advanced ZR-Based Cladding Under Biazal Loading

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    K. Linga (KL) Murty

    2008-08-11

    Investigate creep behavior of Zr-based cladding tubes with attention to basic creep mechanisms and transitions in them at low stresses and/or temperatures and study the dislocation microstructures of deformed samples for correlation with the underlying micromechanism of creep

  1. Cementogenesis is inhibited under a mechanical static compressive force via Piezo1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Ying-Ying; Huang, Yi-Ping; Zhao, Hua-Xiang; Zhang, Ting; Chen, Feng; Liu, Yan

    2017-07-01

    To investigate whether Piezo1, a mechanotransduction gene mediates the cementogenic activity of cementoblasts under a static mechanical compressive force. Murine cementoblasts (OCCM-30) were exposed to a 2.0 g/cm 2 static compressive force for 3, 6, 12, and 24 hours. Then the expression profile of Piezo1 and the cementogenic activity markers osteoprotegerin (Opg), osteopontin (Opn), osteocalcin (Oc), and protein tyrosine phosphataselike member A (Ptpla) were analyzed. Opg, Opn, Oc, and Ptpla expression was further measured after using siRNA to knock down Piezo1. Real-time PCR, Western blot, and cell proliferation assays were performed according to standard procedures. After mechanical stimulation, cell morphology and proliferation did not change significantly. The expression of Piezo1, Opg, Opn, Oc, and Ptpla was significantly decreased, with a high positive correlation between Opg and Piezo1 expression. After Piezo1 knockdown, the expression of Opg, Opn, Oc, and Ptpla was further decreased under mechanical stimulation. Cementogenic activity was inhibited in OCCM-30 cells under static mechanical force, a process that was partially mediated by the decrease of Piezo1. This study provides a new viewpoint of the pathogenesis mechanism of orthodontically induced root resorption and repair.

  2. Entropy for theories with indefinite causal structure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Markes, Sonia; Hardy, Lucien

    2011-01-01

    Any theory with definite causal structure has a defined past and future, be it defined by light cones or an absolute time scale. Entropy is a concept that has traditionally been reliant on a definite notion of causality. However, without a definite notion of causality, the concept of entropy is not all lost. Indefinite causal structure results from combining probabilistic predictions and dynamical space-time. The causaloid framework lays the mathematical groundwork to be able to treat indefinite causal structure. In this paper, we build on the causaloid mathematics and define a causally-unbiased entropy for an indefinite causal structure. In defining a causally-unbiased entropy, there comes about an emergent idea of causality in the form of a measure of causal connectedness, termed the Q factor.

  3. Exploring the genetics and non-cell autonomous mechanisms underlying ALS/FTLD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Hongbo; Kankel, Mark W; Su, Susan C; Han, Steve W S; Ofengeim, Dimitry

    2018-03-01

    Although amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, was first described in 1874, a flurry of genetic discoveries in the last 10 years has markedly increased our understanding of this disease. These findings have not only enhanced our knowledge of mechanisms leading to ALS, but also have revealed that ALS shares many genetic causes with another neurodegenerative disease, frontotemporal lobar dementia (FTLD). In this review, we survey how recent genetic studies have bridged our mechanistic understanding of these two related diseases and how the genetics behind ALS and FTLD point to complex disorders, implicating non-neuronal cell types in disease pathophysiology. The involvement of non-neuronal cell types is consistent with a non-cell autonomous component in these diseases. This is further supported by studies that identified a critical role of immune-associated genes within ALS/FTLD and other neurodegenerative disorders. The molecular functions of these genes support an emerging concept that various non-autonomous functions are involved in neurodegeneration. Further insights into such a mechanism(s) will ultimately lead to a better understanding of potential routes of therapeutic intervention. Facts ALS and FTLD are severe neurodegenerative disorders on the same disease spectrum. Multiple cellular processes including dysregulation of RNA homeostasis, imbalance of proteostasis, contribute to ALS/FTLD pathogenesis. Aberrant function in non-neuronal cell types, including microglia, contributes to ALS/FTLD. Strong neuroimmune and neuroinflammatory components are associated with ALS/FTLD patients. Open Questions Why can patients with similar mutations have different disease manifestations, i.e., why do C9ORF72 mutations lead to motor neuron loss in some patients while others exhibit loss of neurons in the frontotemporal lobe? Do ALS causal mutations result in microglial dysfunction and contribute to ALS/FTLD pathology? How do microglia

  4. Large Deflections Mechanical Analysis of a Suspended Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube under Thermoelectrical Loading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Assaf Ya'akobovitz

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Following the recent progress in integrating single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs into silicon-based micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS, new modeling tools are needed to predict their behavior under different loads, including thermal, electrical and mechanical. In the present study, the mechanical behavior of SWCNTs under thermoelectrical loading is analyzed using a large deflection geometrically nonlinear string model. The effect of the resistive heating was found to have a substantial influence on the SWCNTs behavior, including significant enhancement of the strain (up to the millistrains range and buckling due to the thermal expansion. The effect of local buckling sites was also studied and was found to enhance the local strain. The theoretical and numerical results obtained in the present study demonstrate the importance of resistive heating in the analysis of SWCNTs and provide an additional insight into the unique mechanics of suspended SWCNTs.

  5. Intercomparison of chemical mechanisms for air quality policy formulation and assessment under North American conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derwent, Richard

    2017-07-01

    The intercomparison of seven chemical mechanisms for their suitability for air quality policy formulation and assessment is described. Box modeling techniques were employed using 44 sets of background environmental conditions covering North America to constrain the chemical development of the longer lived species. The selected mechanisms were modified to enable an unbiased assessment of the adequacy of the parameterizations of photochemical ozone production from volatile organic compound (VOC) oxidation in the presence of NO x . Photochemical ozone production rates responded differently to 30% NO x and VOC reductions with the different mechanisms, despite the striking similarities between the base-case ozone production rates. The 30% reductions in NO x and VOCs also produced changes in OH. The responses in OH to 30% reductions in NO x and VOCs appeared to be more sensitive to mechanism choice, compared with the responses in the photochemical ozone production rates. Although 30% NO x reductions generally led to decreases in OH, 30% reductions in VOCs led to increases in OH, irrespective of mechanism choice and background environmental conditions. The different mechanisms therefore gave different OH responses to NO x and VOC reductions and so would give different responses in terms of changes in the fate and behavior of air toxics, acidification and eutrophication, and fine particle formation compared with others, in response to ozone control strategies. Policymakers need to understand that there are likely to be inherent differences in the responses to ozone control strategies between different mechanisms, depending on background environmental conditions and the extents of NO x and VOC reductions under consideration. The purpose of this paper is to compare predicted ozone responses to NO x and VOC reductions with seven chemical mechanisms under North American conditions. The good agreement found between the tested mechanisms should provide some support for their

  6. A Causal Theory of Modality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Tomás Alvarado

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available This work presents a causal conception of metaphysical modality in which a state of affairs is metaphysically possible if and only if it can be caused (in the past, the present or the future by current entities. The conception is contrasted with what is called the “combinatorial” conception of modality, in which everything can co-exist with anything else. This work explains how the notion of ‘causality’ should be construed in the causal theory, what difference exists between modalities thus defined from nomological modality, how accessibility relations between possible worlds should be interpreted, and what is the relation between the causal conception and the necessity of origin.

  7. Limitations of individual causal models, causal graphs, and ignorability assumptions, as illustrated by random confounding and design unfaithfulness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenland, Sander; Mansournia, Mohammad Ali

    2015-10-01

    We describe how ordinary interpretations of causal models and causal graphs fail to capture important distinctions among ignorable allocation mechanisms for subject selection or allocation. We illustrate these limitations in the case of random confounding and designs that prevent such confounding. In many experimental designs individual treatment allocations are dependent, and explicit population models are needed to show this dependency. In particular, certain designs impose unfaithful covariate-treatment distributions to prevent random confounding, yet ordinary causal graphs cannot discriminate between these unconfounded designs and confounded studies. Causal models for populations are better suited for displaying these phenomena than are individual-level models, because they allow representation of allocation dependencies as well as outcome dependencies across individuals. Nonetheless, even with this extension, ordinary graphical models still fail to capture distinctions between hypothetical superpopulations (sampling distributions) and observed populations (actual distributions), although potential-outcome models can be adapted to show these distinctions and their consequences.

  8. On Storks and Babies: Correlation, Causality and Field Experiments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lambrecht Anja

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The explosion of available data has created much excitement among marketing practitioners about their ability to better understand the impact of marketing investments. Big data allows for detecting patterns and often it seems plausible to interpret them as causal. While it is quite obvious that storks do not bring babies, marketing relationships are usually less clear. Apparent “causalities” often fail to hold up under examination. If marketers want to be sure not to walk into a causality trap, they need to conduct field experiments to detect true causal relationships. In the present digital environment, experiments are easier than ever to execute. However, they need to be prepared and interpreted with great care in order to deliver meaningful and genuinely causal results that help improve marketing decisions.

  9. [Pathophysiology of neuropathic pain: molecular mechanisms underlying central sensitization in the dorsal horn in neuropathic pain].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanaka, Hiroki; Noguchi, Koichi

    2012-11-01

    Neuropathic pain syndromes are clinically characterized by spontaneous pain and evoked pain (hyperalgesia and allodynia). The optimal treatment approach for neuropathic pain is still under development because of the complex pathological mechanisms underlying this type of pain. The spinal cord is an important gateway thorough which peripheral pain signals are transmitted to the brain, and sensitization of the spinal neurons is one of the important mechanisms underlying neuropathic pain. Central sensitization represents enhancement of the function of neuronal circuits in nociceptive pathways and is a manifestation of the remarkable plasticity of the somatosensory nervous system after nerve injury. This review highlights the pathological features of central sensitization, which develops because of (1) injury-induced abnormal inputs from primary afferents, (2) increase in the excitability of dorsal horn neurons, and (3) activated glial cell-derived signals.

  10. Quantum theory and local causality

    CERN Document Server

    Hofer-Szabó, Gábor

    2018-01-01

    This book summarizes the results of research the authors have pursued in the past years on the problem of implementing Bell's notion of local causality in local physical theories and relating it to other important concepts and principles in the foundations of physics such as the Common Cause Principle, Bell's inequalities, the EPR (Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen) scenario, and various other locality and causality concepts. The book is intended for philosophers of science with an interest in the formal background of sciences, philosophers of physics and physicists working in foundation of physics.

  11. Review of the damage mechanism in wind turbine gearbox bearings under rolling contact fatigue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Yun-Shuai; Yu, Shu-Rong; Li, Shu-Xin; He, Yan-Ni

    2017-12-01

    Wind turbine gearbox bearings fail with the service life is much shorter than the designed life. Gearbox bearings are subjected to rolling contact fatigue (RCF) and they are observed to fail due to axial cracking, surface flaking, and the formation of white etching areas (WEAs). The current study reviewed these three typical failure modes. The underlying dominant mechanisms were discussed with emphasis on the formation mechanism of WEAs. Although numerous studies have been carried out, the formation of WEAs remains unclear. The prevailing mechanism of the rubbing of crack faces that generates WEAs was questioned by the authors. WEAs were compared with adiabatic shear bands (ASBs) generated in the high strain rate deformation in terms of microstructural compositions, grain refinement, and formation mechanism. Results indicate that a number of similarities exist between them. However, substantial evidence is required to verify whether or not WEAs and ASBs are the same matters.

  12. Transformational Leadership and Organizational Citizenship Behavior: A Meta-Analytic Test of Underlying Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nohe, Christoph; Hertel, Guido

    2017-01-01

    Based on social exchange theory, we examined and contrasted attitudinal mediators (affective organizational commitment, job satisfaction) and relational mediators (trust in leader, leader-member exchange; LMX) of the positive relationship between transformational leadership and organizational citizenship behavior (OCB). Hypotheses were tested using meta-analytic path models with correlations from published meta-analyses (761 samples with 227,419 individuals overall). When testing single-mediator models, results supported our expectations that each of the mediators explained the relationship between transformational leadership and OCB. When testing a multi-mediator model, LMX was the strongest mediator. When testing a model with a latent attitudinal mechanism and a latent relational mechanism, the relational mechanism was the stronger mediator of the relationship between transformational leadership and OCB. Our findings help to better understand the underlying mechanisms of the relationship between transformational leadership and OCB.

  13. Altered causal connectivity of resting state brain networks in amnesic MCI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peipeng Liang

    Full Text Available Most neuroimaging studies of resting state networks in amnesic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI have concentrated on functional connectivity (FC based on instantaneous correlation in a single network. The purpose of the current study was to investigate effective connectivity in aMCI patients based on Granger causality of four important networks at resting state derived from functional magnetic resonance imaging data--default mode network (DMN, hippocampal cortical memory network (HCMN, dorsal attention network (DAN and fronto-parietal control network (FPCN. Structural and functional MRI data were collected from 16 aMCI patients and 16 age, gender-matched healthy controls. Correlation-purged Granger causality analysis was used, taking gray matter atrophy as covariates, to compare the group difference between aMCI patients and healthy controls. We found that the causal connectivity between networks in aMCI patients was significantly altered with both increases and decreases in the aMCI group as compared to healthy controls. Some alterations were significantly correlated with the disease severity as measured by mini-mental state examination (MMSE, and California verbal learning test (CVLT scores. When the whole-brain signal averaged over the entire brain was used as a nuisance co-variate, the within-group maps were significantly altered while the between-group difference maps did not. These results suggest that the alterations in causal influences may be one of the possible underlying substrates of cognitive impairments in aMCI. The present study extends and complements previous FC studies and demonstrates the coexistence of causal disconnection and compensation in aMCI patients, and thus might provide insights into biological mechanism of the disease.

  14. Effects of delaying transplanting on agronomic traits and grain yield of rice under mechanical transplantation pattern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qihua Liu

    Full Text Available A delay in the mechanical transplantation (MT of rice seedlings frequently occurs in Huanghuai wheat-rice rotation cropping districts of China, due to the late harvest of wheat, the poor weather conditions and the insufficiency of transplanters, missing the optimum transplanting time and causing seedlings to age. To identify how delaying transplanting rice affects the agronomic characteristics including the growth duration, photosynthetic productivity and dry matter remobilization efficiency and the grain yield under mechanical transplanting pattern, an experiment with a split-plot design was conducted over two consecutive years. The main plot includes two types of cultivation: mechanical transplanting and artificial transplanting (AT. The subplot comprises four japonica rice cultivars. The results indicate that the rice jointing, booting, heading and maturity stages were postponed under MT when using AT as a control. The tiller occurrence number, dry matter weight per tiller, accumulative dry matter for the population, leaf area index, crop growth rate, photosynthetic potential, and dry matter remobilization efficiency of the leaf under MT significantly decreased compared to those under AT. In contrast, the reduction rate of the leaf area during the heading-maturity stage was markedly enhanced under MT. The numbers of effective panicles and filled grains per panicle and the grain yield significantly decreased under MT. A significant correlation was observed between the dry matter production, remobilization and distribution characteristics and the grain yield. We infer that, as with rice from old seedlings, the decrease in the tiller occurrence, the photosynthetic productivity and the assimilate remobilization efficiency may be important agronomic traits that are responsible for the reduced grain yield under MT.

  15. Dynamic Response and Failure Mechanism of Brittle Rocks Under Combined Compression-Shear Loading Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Yuan; Dai, Feng

    2018-03-01

    A novel method is developed for characterizing the mechanical response and failure mechanism of brittle rocks under dynamic compression-shear loading: an inclined cylinder specimen using a modified split Hopkinson pressure bar (SHPB) system. With the specimen axis inclining to the loading direction of SHPB, a shear component can be introduced into the specimen. Both static and dynamic experiments are conducted on sandstone specimens. Given carefully pulse shaping, the dynamic equilibrium of the inclined specimens can be satisfied, and thus the quasi-static data reduction is employed. The normal and shear stress-strain relationships of specimens are subsequently established. The progressive failure process of the specimen illustrated via high-speed photographs manifests a mixed failure mode accommodating both the shear-dominated failure and the localized tensile damage. The elastic and shear moduli exhibit certain loading-path dependence under quasi-static loading but loading-path insensitivity under high loading rates. Loading rate dependence is evidently demonstrated through the failure characteristics involving fragmentation, compression and shear strength and failure surfaces based on Drucker-Prager criterion. Our proposed method is convenient and reliable to study the dynamic response and failure mechanism of rocks under combined compression-shear loading.

  16. Inspection Mechanism and Experimental Study of Prestressed Reverse Tension Method under PC Beam Bridge Anchorage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Zhang

    2018-03-01

    the prestress under anchorage is directly related to the structural security and performance of PC beam bridge. The reverse tension method is a kind of inspection which confirms the prestress by exerting reversed tension load on the exposed prestressing tendon of beam bridge anchoring system. The thesis elaborately expounds the inspection mechanism and mechanical effect of reverse tension method, theoretically analyzes the influential elements of inspection like tool anchorage deformation, compression of conjuncture, device glide, friction of anchorage loop mouth and elastic compression of concrete, and then presents the following formula to calculate prestress under anchorage. On the basis of model experiment, the thesis systematically studies some key issues during the reverse tension process of PC beam bridge anchorage system like the formation of stress-elongation curve, influential factors, judgment method of prestress under anchorage, variation trend and compensation scale, verifies the accuracy of mechanism analysis and demonstrates: the prestress under anchorage is less than or equal to 75% of the ultimate strength of prestressing tendon, the error of inspect result is less than 1%, which can meet with the demands of construction. The research result has provided theoretical basis and technical foundation for the promotion and application of reverse tension in bridge construction.

  17. Mechanical and electronic properties of monolayer and bilayer phosphorene under uniaxial and isotropic strains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Ting; Han, Yang; Dong, Jinming

    2014-11-14

    The mechanical and electronic properties of both the monolayer and bilayer phosphorenes under either isotropic or uniaxial strain have been systematically investigated using first-principles calculations. It is interesting to find that: 1) Under a large enough isotropic tensile strain, the monolayer phosphorene would lose its pucker structure and transform into a flat hexagonal plane, while two inner sublayers of the bilayer phosphorene could be bonded due to its interlayer distance contraction. 2) Under the uniaxial tensile strain along a zigzag direction, the pucker distance of each layer in the bilayer phosphorene can exhibit a specific negative Poisson's ratio. 3) The electronic properties of both the monolayer and bilayer phosphorenes are sensitive to the magnitude and direction of the applied strains. Their band gaps decrease more rapidly under isotropic compressive strain than under uniaxial strain. Also, their direct-indirect band gap transitions happen at the larger isotropic tensile strains compared with that under uniaxial strain. 4) Under the isotropic compressive strain, the bilayer phosphorene exhibits a transition from a direct-gap semiconductor to a metal. In contrast, the monolayer phosphorene initially has the direct-indirect transition and then transitions to a metal. However, under isotropic tensile strain, both the bilayer and monolayer phosphorene show the direct-indirect transition and, finally, the transition to a metal. Our numerical results may open new potential applications of phosphorene in nanoelectronics and nanomechanical devices by external isotropic strain or uniaxial strain along different directions.

  18. Asymmetric flexural behavior from bamboo's functionally graded hierarchical structure: underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habibi, Meisam K; Samaei, Arash T; Gheshlaghi, Behnam; Lu, Jian; Lu, Yang

    2015-04-01

    As one of the most renewable resources on Earth, bamboo has recently attracted increasing interest for its promising applications in sustainable structural purposes. Its superior mechanical properties arising from the unique functionally-graded (FG) hierarchical structure also make bamboo an excellent candidate for bio-mimicking purposes in advanced material design. However, despite its well-documented, impressive mechanical characteristics, the intriguing asymmetry in flexural behavior of bamboo, alongside its underlying mechanisms, has not yet been fully understood. Here, we used multi-scale mechanical characterizations assisted with advanced environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM) to investigate the asymmetric flexural responses of natural bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis) strips under different loading configurations, during "elastic bending" and "fracture failure" stages, with their respective deformation mechanisms at microstructural level. Results showed that the gradient distribution of the vascular bundles along the thickness direction is mainly responsible for the exhibited asymmetry, whereas the hierarchical fiber/parenchyma cellular structure plays a critical role in alternating the dominant factors for determining the distinctly different failure mechanisms. A numerical model has been likewise adopted to validate the effective flexural moduli of bamboo strips as a function of their FG parameters, while additional experiments on uniaxial loading of bamboo specimens were performed to assess the tension-compression asymmetry, for further understanding of the microstructure evolution of bamboo's outer and innermost layers under different bending states. This work could provide insights to help the processing of novel bamboo-based composites and enable the bio-inspired design of advanced structural materials with desired flexural behavior. Copyright © 2015 Acta Materialia Inc. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. David Bohm : causality and chance, letters to three women

    CERN Document Server

    2017-01-01

    The letters transcribed in this book were written by physicist David Bohm to three close female acquaintances in the period 1950 to 1956. They provide a background to his causal interpretation of quantum mechanics and the Marxist philosophy that inspired his scientific work in quantum theory, probability and statistical mechanics. In his letters, Bohm reveals the ideas that led to his ground breaking book Causality and Chance in Modern Physics. The political arguments as well as the acute personal problems contained in these letters help to give a rounded, human picture of this leading scientist and twentieth century thinker.

  20. Gang membership and substance use: guilt as a gendered causal pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coffman, Donna L; Melde, Chris; Esbensen, Finn-Aage

    2015-03-01

    We examine whether anticipated guilt for substance use is a gendered mechanism underlying the noted enhancement effect of gang membership on illegal drug use. We also demonstrate a method for making stronger causal inferences when assessing mediation in the presence of moderation and time-varying confounding. We estimate a series of inverse propensity weighted models to obtain unbiased estimates of mediation in the presence of confounding of the exposure (i.e., gang membership) and mediator (i.e., anticipated guilt) using three waves of data from a multi-site panel study of a law-related education program for youth ( N =1,113). The onset of gang membership significantly decreased anticipated substance use guilt among both male and female respondents. This reduction was significantly associated with increased frequency of substance use only for female respondents, however, suggesting that gender moderates the mechanism through which gang membership influences substance use. Criminologists are often concerned with identifying causal pathways for antisocial and/or delinquent behavior, but confounders of the exposure, mediator, and outcome often interfere with efforts to assess mediation. Many new approaches have been proposed for strengthening causal inference for mediation effects. After controlling for confounding using inverse propensity weighting, our results suggest that interventions aimed at reducing substance use by current and former female gang members should focus on the normative aspects of these behaviors.

  1. Causal feedbacks in climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nes, van E.H.; Scheffer, M.; Brovkin, V.; Lenton, T.M.; Ye, H.; Deyle, E.; Sugihara, G.

    2015-01-01

    The statistical association between temperature and greenhouse gases over glacial cycles is well documented1, but causality behind this correlation remains difficult to extract directly from the data. A time lag of CO2 behind Antarctic temperature—originally thought to hint at a driving role for

  2. Oxidative Stress and Mitochondrial Activation as the Main Mechanisms Underlying Graphene Toxicity against Human Cancer Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna Jarosz

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Due to the development of nanotechnology graphene and graphene-based nanomaterials have attracted the most attention owing to their unique physical, chemical, and mechanical properties. Graphene can be applied in many fields among which biomedical applications especially diagnostics, cancer therapy, and drug delivery have been arousing a lot of interest. Therefore it is essential to understand better the graphene-cell interactions, especially toxicity and underlying mechanisms for proper use and development. This review presents the recent knowledge concerning graphene cytotoxicity and influence on different cancer cell lines.

  3. Mechanical failure of zigzag graphene nanoribbons under tensile strain induced by edge reconstruction

    KAUST Repository

    Cheng, Yingchun

    2012-10-01

    The structural and mechanical properties of graphene nanoribbons (GNRs) under uniaxial tensile strain are studied by density functional theory. The ideal strength of a zigzag GNR (120 GPa) is close to that of pristine graphene. However, for a GNR with both edges reconstructed to pentagon–heptagon pairs (from hexagon–hexagon pairs) it decreases to 94 GPa and the maximum tensile strain is reduced to 15%. Our results constitute a comprehensive picture of the edge structure effect on the mechanical properties of GNRs.

  4. Reliability-based optimization of maintenance scheduling of mechanical components under fatigue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaurepaire, P; Valdebenito, M A; Schuëller, G I; Jensen, H A

    2012-05-01

    This study presents the optimization of the maintenance scheduling of mechanical components under fatigue loading. The cracks of damaged structures may be detected during non-destructive inspection and subsequently repaired. Fatigue crack initiation and growth show inherent variability, and as well the outcome of inspection activities. The problem is addressed under the framework of reliability based optimization. The initiation and propagation of fatigue cracks are efficiently modeled using cohesive zone elements. The applicability of the method is demonstrated by a numerical example, which involves a plate with two holes subject to alternating stress.

  5. CISM course on mechanical behaviour of soils under environmentally induced cyclic loads

    CERN Document Server

    Wood, David; Mechanical Behaviour of Soils Under Environmentally Induced Cyclic Loads

    2012-01-01

    The book gives a comprehensive description of the mechanical response of soils (granular and cohesive materials) under cyclic loading. It provides the geotechnical engineer with the theoretical and analytical tools necessary for the evaluation of settlements developng with time under cyclic, einvironmentally idncued loads (such as wave motion, wind actions, water table level variation) and their consequences for the serviceability and durability of structures such as the shallow or deep foundations used in offshore engineering, caisson beakwaters, ballast and airport pavements and also to interpret monitoring data, obtained from both natural and artificial slopes and earth embankments, for the purposes of risk assessment and mitigation.

  6. Scientific conception on mechanisms of calcium homeostasis disorders under low dose effect of ionizing radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abylaev, Zh.A.; Dospolova, Zh.G.

    1997-01-01

    Scientific conception of probable consequences of calcium homeostasis disorders in personals, exposed to low dose effect of ionizing radiation has been developed. Principle positions of the conception is that pathologic processes development have different ways of conducting. During predominance of low doses of external gamma-radiation there is leading pathologic mechanism (mechanism 1) of disorder neuroendocrine regulation of both the calcium and the phosphor. In this case sicks have disorders of both the vegetative tonus and the endocrine status. Under internal irradiation (mechanism 2) there is disfunction of organs and systems (bore changes and disorders of hormone status). These changes are considered as consequence of negative action on organism of incorporated long-living radionuclides. Radio-toxic factors action (mechanism 3) provokes the excess of hormones, which acting on bone tissue and could be cause of steroid osteoporosis. Influence of chronic stress factor (mechanism 4) enlarges and burden action on organism of low radiation doses. It is emphasized, that decisive role in development of pathologic processes has mechanism of disturbance of neuroendocrine regulation of calcium exchange

  7. Contact force and mechanical loss of multistage cable under tension and bending

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ru, Yanyun; Yong, Huadong; Zhou, Youhe

    2016-10-01

    A theoretical model for calculating the stress and strain states of cabling structures with different loadings has been developed in this paper. We solve the problem for the first- and second-stage cable with tensile or bending strain. The contact and friction forces between the strands are presented by two-dimensional contact model. Several theoretical models have been proposed to verify the results when the triplet subjected to the tensile strain, including contact force, contact stresses, and mechanical loss. It is found that loadings will affect the friction force and the mechanical loss of the triplet. The results show that the contact force and mechanical loss are dependent on the twist pitch. A shorter twist pitch can lead to higher contact force, while the trend of mechanical loss with twist pitch is complicated. The mechanical loss may be reduced by adjusting the twist pitch reasonably. The present model provides a simple analysis method to investigate the mechanical behaviors in multistage-structures under different loads.

  8. From Sound to Significance: Exploring the Mechanisms Underlying Emotional Reactions to Music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juslin, Patrik N; Barradas, Gonçalo; Eerola, Tuomas

    2015-01-01

    A common approach to studying emotional reactions to music is to attempt to obtain direct links between musical surface features such as tempo and a listener's responses. However, such an analysis ultimately fails to explain why emotions are aroused in the listener. In this article we explore an alternative approach, which aims to account for musical emotions in terms of a set of psychological mechanisms that are activated by different types of information in a musical event. This approach was tested in 4 experiments that manipulated 4 mechanisms (brain stem reflex, contagion, episodic memory, musical expectancy) by selecting existing musical pieces that featured information relevant for each mechanism. The excerpts were played to 60 listeners, who were asked to rate their felt emotions on 15 scales. Skin conductance levels and facial expressions were measured, and listeners reported subjective impressions of relevance to specific mechanisms. Results indicated that the target mechanism conditions evoked emotions largely as predicted by a multimechanism framework and that mostly similar effects occurred across the experiments that included different pieces of music. We conclude that a satisfactory account of musical emotions requires consideration of how musical features and responses are mediated by a range of underlying mechanisms.

  9. Exact solution for stresses/displacements in a multilayered hollow cylinder under thermo-mechanical loading

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yeo, W.H.; Purbolaksono, J.; Aliabadi, M.H.; Ramesh, S.; Liew, H.L.

    2017-01-01

    In this study, a new analytical solution by the recursive method for evaluating stresses/displacements in multilayered hollow cylinder under thermo-mechanical loading was developed. The results for temperature distribution, displacements and stresses obtained by using the proposed solution were shown to be in good agreement with the FEM results. The proposed analytical solution was also found to produce more accurate results than those by the analytical solution reported in literature. - Highlights: • A new analytical solution for evaluating stresses in multilayered hollow cylinder under thermo-mechanical loading. • A simple computational procedure using a recursive method. • A promising technique for evaluating the operating axial and hoop stresses in pressurized composite vessels.

  10. Music and Memory in Alzheimer's Disease and The Potential Underlying Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peck, Katlyn J; Girard, Todd A; Russo, Frank A; Fiocco, Alexandra J

    2016-01-01

    With population aging and a projected exponential expansion of persons diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease (AD), the development of treatment and prevention programs has become a fervent area of research and discovery. A growing body of evidence suggests that music exposure can enhance memory and emotional function in persons with AD. However, there is a paucity of research that aims to identify specific underlying neural mechanisms associated with music's beneficial effects in this particular population. As such, this paper reviews existing anecdotal and empirical evidence related to the enhancing effects of music exposure on cognitive function and further provides a discussion on the potential underlying mechanisms that may explain music's beneficial effect. Specifically, this paper will outline the potential role of the dopaminergic system, the autonomic nervous system, and the default network in explaining how music may enhance memory function in persons with AD.

  11. Behavioral Effects of Upper Respiratory Tract Illnesses: A Consideration of Possible Underlying Cognitive Mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew P. Smith

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Previous research has shown that both experimentally induced upper respiratory tract illnesses (URTIs and naturally occurring URTIs influence mood and performance. The present study investigated possible cognitive mechanisms underlying the URTI-performance changes. Those who developed a cold (N = 47 had significantly faster, but less accurate, performance than those who remained healthy (N = 54. Illness had no effect on manipulations designed to influence encoding, response organisation (stimulus-response compatilibility or response preparation. Similarly, there was no evidence that different components of working memory were impaired. Overall, the present research confirms that URTIs can have an effect on performance efficiency. Further research is required to identify the physiological and behavioral mechanisms underlying these effects.

  12. Physiological mechanisms contributing to increased water-use efficiency in winter wheat under organic fertilization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Linlin; Wang, Shiwen; Chen, Wei; Li, Hongbing; Deng, Xiping

    2017-01-01

    Improving the efficiency of resource utilization has received increasing research attention in recent years. In this study, we explored the potential physiological mechanisms underlying improved grain yield and water-use efficiency of winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) following organic fertilizer application. Two wheat cultivars, ChangHan58 (CH58) and XiNong9871 (XN9871), were grown under the same nitrogen (N) fertilizer rate (urea-N, CK; and manure plus urea-N, M) and under two watering regimes (WW, well-watered; and WS, water stress) imposed after anthesis. The M fertilizer treatment had a higher Pn and lower gs and Tr than CK under both water conditions, in particular, it significantly increased WRC and Ψw, and decreased EWLR and MDA under WS. Also, the M treatment increased post-anthesis N uptake by 81.4 and 16.4% under WS and WW, thus increasing post-anthesis photosynthetic capacity and delaying leaf senescence. Consequently, the M treatment increased post-anthesis DM accumulation under WS and WW by 51.5 and 29.6%, WUEB by 44.5 and 50.9%, grain number per plant by 11.5 and 12.2% and 1000-grain weight by 7.3 and 3.6%, respectively, compared with CK. The grain yield under M treatment increased by 23 and 15%, and water use efficiency (WUEg) by 25 and 23%, respectively. The increased WUE under organic fertilizer treatment was due to elevated photosynthesis and decreased Tr and gs. Our results suggest that the organic fertilizer treatment enabled plants to use water more efficiently under drought stress.

  13. Detecting method for crude oil price fluctuation mechanism under different periodic time series

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao, Xiangyun; Fang, Wei; An, Feng; Wang, Yue

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • We proposed the concept of autoregressive modes to indicate the fluctuation patterns. • We constructed transmission networks for studying the fluctuation mechanism. • There are different fluctuation mechanism under different periodic time series. • Only a few types of autoregressive modes control the fluctuations in crude oil price. • There are cluster effects during the fluctuation mechanism of autoregressive modes. - Abstract: Current existing literatures can characterize the long-term fluctuation of crude oil price time series, however, it is difficult to detect the fluctuation mechanism specifically under short term. Because each fluctuation pattern for one short period contained in a long-term crude oil price time series have dynamic characteristics of diversity; in other words, there exhibit various fluctuation patterns in different short periods and transmit to each other, which reflects the reputedly complicate and chaotic oil market. Thus, we proposed an incorporated method to detect the fluctuation mechanism, which is the evolution of the different fluctuation patterns over time from the complex network perspective. We divided crude oil price time series into segments using sliding time windows, and defined autoregressive modes based on regression models to indicate the fluctuation patterns of each segment. Hence, the transmissions between different types of autoregressive modes over time form a transmission network that contains rich dynamic information. We then capture transmission characteristics of autoregressive modes under different periodic time series through the structure features of the transmission networks. The results indicate that there are various autoregressive modes with significantly different statistical characteristics under different periodic time series. However, only a few types of autoregressive modes and transmission patterns play a major role in the fluctuation mechanism of the crude oil price, and these

  14. Adverse Effects from Clenbuterol and Ractopamine on Nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and the Underlying Mechanism

    OpenAIRE

    Zhuang, Ziheng; Zhao, Yunli; Wu, Qiuli; Li, Min; Liu, Haicui; Sun, Lingmei; Gao, Wei; Wang, Dayong

    2014-01-01

    In the present study, we used Caenorhabditis elegans assay system to investigate in vivo toxicity from clentuberol and ractopamine and the possible underlying mechanism. Both acute and prolonged exposures to clentuberol or ractopamine decreased brood size and locomotion behavior, and induced intestinal autofluorescence and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Although acute exposure to the examined concentrations of clentuberol or ractopamine did not induce lethality, prolonged exposure ...

  15. Optimal Contract Design for Cooperative Relay Incentive Mechanism under Moral Hazard

    OpenAIRE

    Zhao, Nan; Wu, Minghu; Xiong, Wei; Liu, Cong

    2015-01-01

    Cooperative relay can effectively improve spectrum efficiency by exploiting the spatial diversity in the wireless networks. However, wireless nodes may acquire different network information with various users’ location and mobility, channels’ conditions, and other factors, which results in asymmetric information between the source and the relay nodes (RNs). In this paper, the relay incentive mechanism between relay nodes and the source is investigated under the asymmetric information. By mode...

  16. Mechanisms underlying reductant-induced reactive oxygen species formation by anticancer copper(II) compounds

    OpenAIRE

    Kowol, Christian R.; Heffeter, Petra; Miklos, Walter; Gille, Lars; Trondl, Robert; Cappellacci, Loredana; Berger, Walter; Keppler, Bernhard K.

    2011-01-01

    Intracellular generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) via thiol-mediated reduction of copper(II) to copper(I) has been assumed as the major mechanism underlying the anticancer activity of copper(II) complexes. The aim of this study was to compare the anticancer potential of copper(II) complexes of Triapine (3-amino-pyridine-2-carboxaldehyde thiosemicarbazone; currently in phase II clinical trials) and its terminally dimethylated derivative with that of 2-formylpyridine thiosemicarbazone a...

  17. A fracture mechanics study of tungsten failure under high heat flux loads

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li, Muyuan

    2015-01-01

    The performance of fusion devices is highly dependent on plasma-facing components. Tungsten is the most promising candidate material for armors in plasma-facing components in ITER and DEMO. However, the brittleness of tungsten below the ductile-to-brittle transition temperature is very critical to the reliability of plasma-facing components. In this work, thermo-mechanical and fracture behaviors of tungsten are predicted numerically under fusion relevant thermal loadings.

  18. The effects and underlying mechanisms of mirror therapy – literature review

    OpenAIRE

    Urška Puh; Sonja Hlebš

    2013-01-01

    Background: Mirror therapy is a relatively new therapeutic modality, where movement of the unaffected limb is used to facilitate performance of the affected limb. Literature review of clinical studies regarding the effectiveness of mirror therapy in different groups of patients was performed. The review focussed on randomised controlled trials and studies, which explore the underlying mechanisms of mirror therapy. Conclusions: The majority of randomised controlled ...

  19. The chemical and mechanical behaviors of polymer / reactive metal systems under high strain rates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Yubin

    As one category of energetic materials, impact-initiated reactive materials are able to release a high amount of stored chemical energy under high strain rate impact loading, and are used extensively in civil and military applications. In general, polymers are introduced as binder materials to trap the reactive metal powders inside, and also act as an oxidizing agent for the metal ingredient. Since critical attention has been paid on the metal / metal reaction, only a few types of polymer / reactive metal interactions have been studied in the literature. With the higher requirement of materials resistant to different thermal and mechanical environments, the understanding and characterization of polymer / reactive metal interactions are in great demand. In this study, PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene) 7A / Ti (Titanium) composites were studied under high strain rates by utilizing the Taylor impact and SHPB tests. Taylor impact tests with different impact velocities, sample dimensions and sample configurations were conducted on the composite, equipped with a high-speed camera for tracking transient images during the sudden process. SHPB and Instron tests were carried out to obtain the stress vs. strain curves of the composite under a wide range of strain rates, the result of which were also utilized for fitting the constitutive relations of the composite based on the modified Johnson-Cook strength model. Thermal analyses by DTA tests under different flow rates accompanied with XRD identification were conducted to study the reaction mechanism between PTFE 7A and Ti when only heat was provided. Numerical simulations on Taylor impact tests and microstructural deformations were also performed to validate the constitutive model built for the composite system, and to investigate the possible reaction mechanism between two components. The results obtained from the high strain rate tests, thermal analyses and numerical simulations were combined to provide a systematic study on

  20. Modulating Conscious Movement Intention by Noninvasive Brain Stimulation and the Underlying Neural Mechanisms

    OpenAIRE

    Douglas, Zachary H.; Maniscalco, Brian; Hallett, Mark; Wassermann, Eric M.; He, Biyu J.

    2015-01-01

    Conscious intention is a fundamental aspect of the human experience. Despite long-standing interest in the basis and implications of intention, its underlying neurobiological mechanisms remain poorly understood. Using high-definition transcranial DC stimulation (tDCS), we observed that enhancing spontaneous neuronal excitability in both the angular gyrus and the primary motor cortex caused the reported time of conscious movement intention to be ∼60–70 ms earlier. Slow brain waves recorded ∼2–...

  1. Diffuse and Focal Brain Injury in a Large Animal Model of PTE: Mechanisms Underlying Epileptogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-10-01

    Conclusions: A) Contusion injury validation and neuropathology B) Grid electrode development and testing C) Wireless Large Animal Custom Enclosure...In addition, we will test the NF-L and GFAP immunoassay to begin quantification of this biomarkers, as well as collecting serum from the animals pre...AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-16-1-0675 TITLE: Diffuse and Focal Brain Injury in a Large Animal Model of PTE: Mechanisms Underlying Epileptogenesis

  2. Different intra- and interspecific facilitation mechanisms between two Mediterranean trees under a climate change scenario.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gimeno, Teresa E; Escudero, Adrián; Valladares, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    In harsh environments facilitation alleviates biotic and abiotic constraints on tree recruitment. Under ongoing drier climate change, we expect facilitation to increase as a driver of coexistence. However, this might not hold under extreme abiotic stress and when the outcome depends on the interaction with other drivers such as altered herbivore pressure due to land use change. We performed a field water-manipulation experiment to quantify the importance of facilitation in two coexisting Mediterranean trees (dominant Juniperus thurifera and coexisting Quercus ilex subsp. ballota) under a climate change scenario. Shifts in canopy dominance favouring Q. ilex could be based on the extension of heterospecific facilitation to the detriment of conspecific alleviation. We found that saplings of both species transplanted under the canopy of nurse trees had greater survival probability, growth and photochemical efficiency. Intra- and interspecific facilitation mechanisms differed: alleviation of abiotic stress benefited both species during summer and J. thurifera during winter, whereas browsing protection was relevant only for Q. ilex. Facilitation was greater under the dry treatment only for Q. ilex, which partially agreed with the predictions of the stress gradient hypothesis. We conclude that present rainfall availability limits neither J. thurifera nor Q. ilex establishment. Nevertheless, under current global change scenarios, imposing increasing abiotic stress together with altered herbivore browsing, nurse trees could differentially facilitate the establishment of Q. ilex due to species-specific traits, i.e. palatability; drought, heat and cold tolerance, underlying species differences in the facilitation mechanisms and eventually triggering a change from pure juniper woodlands to mixed formations.

  3. FInal Report: First Principles Modeling of Mechanisms Underlying Scintillator Non-Proportionality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aberg, Daniel [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Sadigh, Babak [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Zhou, Fei [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)

    2015-01-01

    This final report presents work carried out on the project “First Principles Modeling of Mechanisms Underlying Scintillator Non-Proportionality” at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory during 2013-2015. The scope of the work was to further the physical understanding of the microscopic mechanisms behind scintillator nonproportionality that effectively limits the achievable detector resolution. Thereby, crucial quantitative data for these processes as input to large-scale simulation codes has been provided. In particular, this project was divided into three tasks: (i) Quantum mechanical rates of non-radiative quenching, (ii) The thermodynamics of point defects and dopants, and (iii) Formation and migration of self-trapped polarons. The progress and results of each of these subtasks are detailed.

  4. Potential neural mechanisms underlying the effectiveness of early intervention for children with autism spectrum disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Katherine; Stone, Wendy L.; Dawson, Geraldine

    2014-01-01

    Although evidence supports the efficacy of early intervention for improving outcomes for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), the mechanisms underlying their effectiveness remain poorly understood. This paper reviews the research literature on the neural bases of the early core deficits in ASD and proposes three key features of early intervention related to the neural mechanisms that may contribute to its effectiveness in improving deficit areas. These features include (1) the early onset of intensive intervention which capitalizes on the experience-expectant plasticity of the immature brain, (2) the use of treatment strategies that address core deficits in social motivation through an emphasis on positive social engagement and arousal modulation, and (3) promotion of complex neural networks and connectivity through thematic, multi-sensory and multi-domain teaching approaches. Understanding the mechanisms of effective early intervention will enable us to identify common or foundational active ingredients for promoting optimal outcomes in children with ASD. PMID:25108609

  5. Contraction and elongation: Mechanics underlying cell boundary deformations in epithelial tissue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hara, Yusuke

    2017-06-01

    The cell-cell boundaries of epithelial cells form cellular frameworks at the apical side of tissues. Deformations in these boundaries, for example, boundary contraction and elongation, and the associated forces form the mechanical basis of epithelial tissue morphogenesis. In this review, using data from recent Drosophila studies on cell boundary contraction and elongation, I provide an overview of the mechanism underlying the bi-directional deformations in the epithelial cell boundary, that are sustained by biased accumulations of junctional and apico-medial non-muscle myosin II. Moreover, how the junctional tensions exist on cell boundaries in different boundary dynamics and morphologies are discussed. Finally, some future perspectives on how recent knowledge about single cell boundary-level mechanics will contribute to our understanding of epithelial tissue morphogenesis are discussed. © 2017 Japanese Society of Developmental Biologists.

  6. Compressive damage mechanism of GFRP composites under off-axis loading: Experimental and numerical investigations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhou, H.W.; Li, H.Y.; Gui, L.L.

    2013-01-01

    Experimental and computational studies of the microscale mechanisms of damage formation and evolution in unidirectional glass fiber reinforced polymer composites (GFRP) under axial and off-axis compressive loading are carried out. A series of compressive testing of the composites with different...... the angle between the fiber direction and the loading vector goes from 0° to 45° (by 2.3–2.6 times), and then slightly increases (when the angle approaches 80–90°). At the low angles between the fiber and the loading vector, fiber buckling and kinking are the main mechanisms of fiber failure....... With increasing the angle between the fiber and applied loading, failure of glass fibers is mainly controlled by shear cracking. For the computational analysis of the damage mechanisms, 3D multifiber unit cell models of GFRP composites and X-FEM approach to the fracture modeling were used. The computational...

  7. [Progress of researches on mechanism of acupuncture therapy underlying improvement of acute cerebral hemorrhage].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fan; Wang, Hai-qiao; Dong, Gui-rong

    2011-04-01

    In the present paper, the authors review the progress of researches on the mechanism of acupuncture therapy underlying improvement of acute cerebral hemorrhage from experimental studies and research methods. The effects of acupuncture intervention mainly involve (1) lessening inflammatory reactions, (2) reducing impairment of free radicals and excitatory amino acids on cerebral neurons, (3) balancing release of vascular bioactive substances to increase regional cerebral blood flow, and (4) promoting repair and regeneration of the neural tissue, etc. In regard to the research methods, many new biological techniques such as biological molecular approaches, neuro-cellular chemical methods, reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) or quantitative real time-PCR, situ hybridization, western blotting, electron microscope, etc., have been extensively applied to researches on the underlying mechanism of acupuncture therapy for cerebral infarction. In addition, the authors also pointed out that in spite of achieving some bigger progresses in experimental studies, most of the results basically reflect static, isolated and regional changes rather than dynamic and whole body changes. For this reason, more vivo research techniques and noninvasive research methods are highly recommended to be used in the future research on the underlying mechanisms of acupuncture therapy for acute cerebral ischemia.

  8. Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures: so-called psychiatric comorbidity and underlying defense mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beghi, Massimiliano; Negrini, Paola Beffa; Perin, Cecilia; Peroni, Federica; Magaudda, Adriana; Cerri, Cesare; Cornaggia, Cesare Maria

    2015-01-01

    In Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition, psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) do not have a unique classification as they can be found within different categories: conversion, dissociative, and somatization disorders. The ICD-10, instead, considers PNES within dissociative disorders, merging the dissociative disorders and conversion disorders, although the underlying defense mechanisms are different. The literature data show that PNES are associated with cluster B (mainly borderline) personality disorders and/or to people with depressive or anxiety disorders. Defense mechanisms in patients with PNES with a prevalence of anxious/depressive symptoms are of "neurotic" type; their goal is to lead to a "split", either vertical (dissociation) or horizontal (repression). The majority of patients with this type of PNES have alexithymia traits, meaning that they had difficulties in feeling or perceiving emotions. In subjects where PNES are associated with a borderline personality, in which the symbolic function is lost, the defense mechanisms are of a more archaic nature (denial). PNES with different underlying defense mechanisms have different prognoses (despite similar severity of PNES) and need usually a different treatment (pharmacological or psychological). Thus, it appears superfluous to talk about psychiatric comorbidity, since PNES are a different symptomatic expression of specific psychiatric disorders.

  9. Mechanisms underlying the nociceptive responses induced by platelet-activating factor (PAF) in the rat paw.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marotta, Denise M; Costa, Robson; Motta, Emerson M; Fernandes, Elizabeth S; Medeiros, Rodrigo; Quintão, Nara L M; Campos, Maria M; Calixto, João B

    2009-04-01

    Platelet-activating factor (PAF) is an inflammatory mediator widely known to exert relevant pathophysiological functions. However, the relevance of PAF in nociception has received much less attention. Herein, we have investigated the mechanisms underlying PAF-induced spontaneous nociception and mechanical hypersensitivity in the rat paw. PAF injection (1- 30 nmol/paw) resulted in a dose-related overt nociception, whilst only the dose of 10 nmol/ paw produced a significant and time-related mechanical hypersensitivity. Local coinjection of PAF antagonist WEB2086 significantly inhibited both spontaneous nociception and mechanical hypersensitivity. Moreover, the coinjection of the natural IL-1beta receptor antagonist (IRA) notably prevented both PAF-induced nociceptive responses, whilst these responses were not altered by anti-TNFalpha coinjection. Interestingly, pretreatment with the ultrapotent vaniloid agonist resiniferotoxin, coinjection of the TRPV1 receptor antagonist SB366791, or mast cell depletion with compound 48/80 markedly prevented PAF-induced spontaneous nociception. Conversely, PAF-elicited mechanical hypersensitivity was strikingly susceptible to distinct antineutrophil-related strategies, namely the antineutrophil antibody, the selectin blocker fucoidin, the chemokine CXCR2 receptor antagonist SB225002, and the C5a receptor antibody anti-CD88. Notably, the same antineutrophil migration strategies significantly prevented the increase of myeloperoxidase activity induced by PAF. The mechanical hypersensitivity caused by PAF was also prevented by the cyclooxygenase inhibitors indomethacin or celecoxib, and by the selective beta(1) adrenergic receptor antagonist atenolol. Collectively, the present results provide consistent evidence indicating that distinct mechanisms are involved in the spontaneous nociception and mechanical hypersensitivity caused by PAF. They also support the concept that selective PAF receptor antagonists might constitute interesting

  10. Formalizing Neurath's ship: Approximate algorithms for online causal learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bramley, Neil R; Dayan, Peter; Griffiths, Thomas L; Lagnado, David A

    2017-04-01

    Higher-level cognition depends on the ability to learn models of the world. We can characterize this at the computational level as a structure-learning problem with the goal of best identifying the prevailing causal relationships among a set of relata. However, the computational cost of performing exact Bayesian inference over causal models grows rapidly as the number of relata increases. This implies that the cognitive processes underlying causal learning must be substantially approximate. A powerful class of approximations that focuses on the sequential absorption of successive inputs is captured by the Neurath's ship metaphor in philosophy of science, where theory change is cast as a stochastic and gradual process shaped as much by people's limited willingness to abandon their current theory when considering alternatives as by the ground truth they hope to approach. Inspired by this metaphor and by algorithms for approximating Bayesian inference in machine learning, we propose an algorithmic-level model of causal structure learning under which learners represent only a single global hypothesis that they update locally as they gather evidence. We propose a related scheme for understanding how, under these limitations, learners choose informative interventions that manipulate the causal system to help elucidate its workings. We find support for our approach in the analysis of 3 experiments. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. Transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms underlying enhanced in vitro adipocyte differentiation by the brominated flame retardant BDE-47

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kamstra, Jorke H; Hruba, Eva; Blumberg, Bruce

    2014-01-01

    . The mechanisms by which EDCs direct preadipocytes to form adipocytes are poorly understood. Here, we examined transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms underlying the induction of in vitro adipocyte differentiation by BDE-47. Quantitative high content microscopy revealed concentration-dependent enhanced...

  12. Fracture mechanics study on stress corrosion cracking behavior under corrosive environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fujii, Tomoyuki; Tohgo, Keiichiro; Shimamura, Yoshinobu; Ishizuka, Naohiro; Takanashi, Masahiro; Itabashi, Yu; Nakayama, Gen; Sakakibara, Yohei; Hirano, Takashi

    2013-01-01

    This paper deals with applicability of non-linear fracture mechanics to crack growth by stress corrosion cracking (SCC) under large-scale yielding and in a plastically deformed area. Crack growth test by compact tension specimen is carried out to evaluate crack growth rate under small-scale and large-scale yielding conditions. To evaluate the crack growth behavior from a crack initiated in a plastically deformed area, crack growth test is also carried out for a very short pre-crack in a plastically deformed four-point bending specimen. Conventional stress intensity factor (K) and equivalent stress intensity factor (K J ) defined by J integral are used as fracture mechanics parameters which characterize the crack growth rate. On da/dt-K diagram, a data band shows wide scatter, especially the crack growth rate in a plastically deformed area is higher than that under small-scale yielding condition. On the other hand, da/dt-K J diagram exhibits narrower scatter on a data band than da/dt-K diagram. The equivalent stress intensity factor is appropriate for characterization of crack growth rate by SCC under small-scale yielding through large scale yielding conditions and in a plastically deformed area. (author)

  13. Mechanical behavior of confined self-compacting reinforced concrete circular columns under concentric axial loading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fouad Khairallah

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available While there is abundant research information on ordinary confined concrete, there are little data on the behavior of Self-Compacting Concrete (SCC under such condition. Due to higher shrinkage and lower coarse aggregate content of SCC compared to that of Normal Concrete (NC, its composite performance under confined conditions needs more investigation. This paper has been devoted to investigate and compare the mechanical behavior of confined concrete circular columns cast with SCC and NC under concentric axial loading. The parameters affecting are including concrete compressive strength and confinement configuration. Twenty column specimens were casted and confined using four confinement techniques, CFRP wrap, FRP tube, GFRP wrap, and spiral steel hoops. The performance of the tested column specimens is evaluated based on mode of failure, load–displacement curve, stress–strain characteristics, ultimate strength, ductility, and degree of confinement.

  14. First-principles calculations of mechanical and electronic properties of silicene under strain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rui Qin

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available We perform first-principles calculations of mechanical and electronic properties of silicene under strains. The in-plane stiffness of silicene is much smaller than that of graphene. The yielding strain of silicene under uniform expansion in the ideal conditions is about 20%. The homogeneous strain can introduce a semimetal-metal transition. The semimetal state of silicene, in which the Dirac cone locates at the Fermi level, can only persist up to tensile strain of 7% with nearly invariant Fermi velocity. For larger strains, silicene changes into a conventional metal. The work function is found to change significantly under biaxial strain. Our calculations show that strain tuning is important for applications of silicene in nanoelectronics.

  15. Skin transcriptome reveals the intrinsic molecular mechanisms underlying hair follicle cycling in Cashmere goats under natural and shortened photoperiod conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Min; Song, Shen; Dong, Kunzhe; Chen, XiaoFei; Liu, Xuexue; Rouzi, Marhaba; Zhao, Qianjun; He, Xiaohong; Pu, Yabin; Guan, Weijun; Ma, Yuehui; Jiang, Lin

    2017-10-18

    The growth of cashmere exhibits a seasonal pattern arising from photoperiod change. However, the underlying molecular mechanism remains unclear. We profiled the skin transcriptome of six goats at seven time points during hair follicle cycling via RNA-seq. The six goats comprised three goats exposed to a natural photoperiod and three exposed to a shortened photoperiod. During hair cycle transition, 1713 genes showed differential expression, and 332 genes showed a pattern of periodic expression. Moreover, a short photoperiod induced the hair follicle to enter anagen early, and 246 genes overlapped with the periodic genes. Among these key genes, cold-shock domain containing C2 (CSDC2) was highly expressed in the epidermis and dermis of Cashmere goat skin, although its function in hair-follicle development remains unknown. CSDC2 silencing in mouse fibroblasts resulted in the decreased mRNA expression of two key hair-follicle factors, leading to reduced cell numbers and a lower cell density. Cashmere growth or molting might be controlled by a set of periodic regulatory genes. The appropriate management of short light exposure can induce hair follicles to enter full anagen early through the activation of these regulators. The CSDC2 gene is a potentially important transcription factor in the hair growth cycle.

  16. Modeling and numerical analysis of granite rock specimen under mechanical loading and fire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luc Leroy Ngueyep. Mambou

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The effect of ISO 834 fire on the mechanical properties of granite rock specimen submitted to uniaxial loading is numerically investigated. Based on Newton's second law, the rate-equation model of granite rock specimen under mechanical load and fire is established. The effect of heat treatment on the mechanical performance of granite is analyzed at the center and the ends of specimen. At the free end of granite rock specimen, it is shown that from 20 °C to 500 °C, the internal stress and internal strain are weak; whereas above 500 °C, they start to increase rapidly, announcing the imminent collapse. At the center of specimen, the analysis of the internal stress and internal strain reveals that the fire reduces the mechanical performance of granite significantly. Moreover, it is found that after 3 min of exposure to fire, the mechanical energy necessary to fragment the granite can be reduced up to 80%.

  17. New developments on the neurobiological and pharmaco-genetic mechanisms underlying internet and videogame addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinstein, Aviv; Lejoyeux, Michel

    2015-03-01

    There is emerging evidence that the psychobiological mechanisms underlying behavioral addictions such as internet and videogame addiction resemble those of addiction for substances of abuse. Review of brain imaging, treatment and genetic studies on videogame and internet addiction. Literature search of published articles between 2009 and 2013 in Pubmed using "internet addiction" and "videogame addiction" as the search word. Twenty-nine studies have been selected and evaluated under the criteria of brain imaging, treatment, and genetics. Brain imaging studies of the resting state have shown that long-term internet game playing affected brain regions responsible for reward, impulse control and sensory-motor coordination. Brain activation studies have shown that videogame playing involved changes in reward and loss of control and that gaming pictures have activated regions similarly to those activated by cue-exposure to drugs. Structural studies have shown alterations in the volume of the ventral striatum possible as result of changes in reward. Furthermore, videogame playing was associated with dopamine release similar in magnitude to those of drugs of abuse and that there were faulty inhibitory control and reward mechanisms videogame addicted individuals. Finally, treatment studies using fMRI have shown reduction in craving for videogames and reduced associated brain activity. Videogame playing may be supported by similar neural mechanisms underlying drug abuse. Similar to drug and alcohol abuse, internet addiction results in sub-sensitivity of dopamine reward mechanisms. Given the fact that this research is in its early stage it is premature to conclude that internet addiction is equivalent to substance addictions. © American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry.

  18. Development of effective connectivity during own- and other-race face processing: A Granger causality analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guifei Zhou

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Numerous developmental studies have suggested that other-race effect (ORE in face recognition emerges as early as in infancy and develops steadily throughout childhood. However, there is very limited research on the neural mechanisms underlying this developmental ORE. The present study used Granger causality analysis (GCA to examine the development of children’s cortical networks in processing own- and other-race faces. Children were between 3 to 13 years. An old-new paradigm was used to assess their own- and other-race face recognition with ETG-4000 (Hitachi Medical Co., Japan acquiring functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS data. After preprocessing, for each participant and under each face condition, we obtained the causal map by calculating the weights of causal relations between the time courses of oxy-Hb of each pair of channels using GCA. To investigate further the differential causal connectivity for own-race faces and other-race faces at the group level, a repeated measure analysis of variance (ANOVA was performed on the GCA weights for each pair of channels with the face race task (own-race face vs. other-race face as the within-subject variable and the age as a between-subject factor (continuous variable. We found an age-related increase in functional connectivity, paralleling a similar age-related improvement in behavioral face processing ability. More importantly, we found that the significant differences in neural functional connectivity between the recognition of own-race faces and that of other-race faces were moderated by age. Thus, like the behavioral ORE, the neural ORE emerges early and undergoes a protracted developmental course.

  19. Two roads to noncommutative causality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Besnard, Fabien

    2015-01-01

    We review the physical motivations and the mathematical results obtained so far in the isocone-based approach to noncommutative causality. We also give a briefer account of the alternative framework of Franco and Eckstein which is based on Lorentzian spectral triples. We compare the two theories on the simple example of the product geometry of the Minkowski plane by the finite noncommutative space with algebra M 2 (C). (paper)

  20. Microscale experimental investigation of deformation and damage of argillaceous rocks under cyclic hydric and mechanical loads

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang, Linlin; Yang, Diansen; Heripre, Eva; Chanchole, Serge; Bornert, Michel; Pouya, Ahmad; Halphen, Bernard

    2012-01-01

    Document available in abstract form only. Argillaceous rocks are possible host rocks for underground nuclear waste repositories. They exhibit complex coupled thermo-hydro-chemo-mechanical behavior, the description of which would strongly benefit from an improved experimental insight on their deformation and damage mechanisms at microscale. We present some recent observations of the evolution of these rocks at the scale of their composite microstructure, essentially made of a clay matrix with embedded carbonates and quartz particles with sizes ranging from a few to several tens of micrometers, when they are subjected to cyclic variations of relative humidity and mechanical loading. They are based on the combination of high definition and high resolution imaging in an environmental scanning electron microscope (ESEM), in situ hydro-mechanical loading of the samples, and digital image correlation techniques. Samples, several millimeters in diameter, are held at a constant temperature of 2 deg. Celsius while the vapor pressure in the ESEM chamber is varied from a few to several hundreds of Pascals, generating a relative humidity ranging from about 10% up to 90%. Results show a strongly heterogeneous deformation field at microscale, which is the result of complex hydro-mechanical interactions. In particular, it can be shown that local swelling incompatibilities can generate irreversible deformations in the clay matrix, even if the overall hydric deformations seem reversible. In addition, local damage can be generated, in the form of a network of microcracks, located in the bulk of the clay matrix and/or at the interface between clay and other mineral particles. The morphology of this network, described in terms of crack length, orientation and preferred location, has been observed to be dependent on the speed of the variation of the relative humidity, and is different in a saturation or desaturation process. Besides studying the deformation and damage under hydric

  1. Concept of statistical causality and local martingales

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valjarević Dragana

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we consider a statistical concept of causality in continuous time in filtered probability spaces which is based on Granger's definitions of causality. The given causality concept is closely connected to the preservation of the property being a local martingale if the filtration is getting larger. Namely, the local martingale remains unpredictable if the amount of information is increased. We proved that the preservation of this property is equivalent with the concept of causality.

  2. Obesity and infection: reciprocal causality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hainer, V; Zamrazilová, H; Kunešová, M; Bendlová, B; Aldhoon-Hainerová, I

    2015-01-01

    Associations between different infectious agents and obesity have been reported in humans for over thirty years. In many cases, as in nosocomial infections, this relationship reflects the greater susceptibility of obese individuals to infection due to impaired immunity. In such cases, the infection is not related to obesity as a causal factor but represents a complication of obesity. In contrast, several infections have been suggested as potential causal factors in human obesity. However, evidence of a causal linkage to human obesity has only been provided for adenovirus 36 (Adv36). This virus activates lipogenic and proinflammatory pathways in adipose tissue, improves insulin sensitivity, lipid profile and hepatic steatosis. The E4orf1 gene of Adv36 exerts insulin senzitizing effects, but is devoid of its pro-inflammatory modalities. The development of a vaccine to prevent Adv36-induced obesity or the use of E4orf1 as a ligand for novel antidiabetic drugs could open new horizons in the prophylaxis and treatment of obesity and diabetes. More experimental and clinical studies are needed to elucidate the mutual relations between infection and obesity, identify additional infectious agents causing human obesity, as well as define the conditions that predispose obese individuals to specific infections.

  3. Interactive evolution concept for analyzing a rock salt cavern under cyclic thermo-mechanical loading

    Science.gov (United States)

    König, Diethard; Mahmoudi, Elham; Khaledi, Kavan; von Blumenthal, Achim; Schanz, Tom

    2016-04-01

    The excess electricity produced by renewable energy sources available during off-peak periods of consumption can be used e.g. to produce and compress hydrogen or to compress air. Afterwards the pressurized gas is stored in the rock salt cavities. During this process, thermo-mechanical cyclic loading is applied to the rock salt surrounding the cavern. Compared to the operation of conventional storage caverns in rock salt the frequencies of filling and discharging cycles and therefore the thermo-mechanical loading cycles are much higher, e.g. daily or weekly compared to seasonally or yearly. The stress strain behavior of rock salt as well as the deformation behavior and the stability of caverns in rock salt under such loading conditions are unknown. To overcome this, existing experimental studies have to be supplemented by exploring the behavior of rock salt under combined thermo-mechanical cyclic loading. Existing constitutive relations have to be extended to cover degradation of rock salt under thermo-mechanical cyclic loading. At least the complex system of a cavern in rock salt under these loading conditions has to be analyzed by numerical modeling taking into account the uncertainties due to limited access in large depth to investigate material composition and properties. An interactive evolution concept is presented to link the different components of such a study - experimental modeling, constitutive modeling and numerical modeling. A triaxial experimental setup is designed to characterize the cyclic thermo-mechanical behavior of rock salt. The imposed boundary conditions in the experimental setup are assumed to be similar to the stress state obtained from a full-scale numerical simulation. The computational model relies primarily on the governing constitutive model for predicting the behavior of rock salt cavity. Hence, a sophisticated elasto-viscoplastic creep constitutive model is developed to take into account the dilatancy and damage progress, as well as

  4. Corporate debts ad credit performance under the new mechanism of reorganization of the Russian banks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergey A. Andryushin

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective to explore the dynamics and factors of formation of corporate debts the characteristics of low credit activity of the Russian banks and regulation of liquidity deficit of enterprises under the new reorganization mechanism in the Russian banking sector. Methods systematic approach to the cognition of economic phenomena which allows to study them in their dynamic development taking into account the influence of various environmental factors. The systematic approach determined selection of specific research methods empirical logical comparative and statistical. Results the article is devoted to the problems of declining credit activity of commercial banks under the conditions of economic activity revival as well as to assessing the impact of the new reorganization mechanism on this process. It is shown that in the recent years the nonfinancial sector faces the trend of optimizing the corporate debts and the liquidity deficit which reduced the demand for loans and as a consequence decreased the banksrsquo credit activity. To analyze the dynamics of deficitsurplus of liquidity in the corporate sector a new classification of liquidity deficitsurplus levels was introduced. Based on the proposed classification the risk factors were identified that influenced the dynamics of indebtedness in the corporate sector. The article also analyses the modern monetary mechanism of money supply in the economy and its transformation. It was determined that the main limitation of credit issuance by commercial banks is their capital not the reserve multiplier. The new mechanism of credit institutionsrsquo financial recovery and its impact on the banksrsquo credit activity was estimated. The conditions of liquidity deficiency reduction in the Russian companies were analyzed in the medium term. Scientific novelty for the first time on the basis of system analysis methods the growth factors of the corporate debt load were identified the peculiarities of low

  5. Theoretical modeling of mechanical homeostasis of a mammalian cell under gravity-directed vector.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Lüwen; Zhang, Chen; Zhang, Fan; Lü, Shouqin; Sun, Shujin; Lü, Dongyuan; Long, Mian

    2018-02-01

    Translocation of dense nucleus along gravity vector initiates mechanical remodeling of a eukaryotic cell. In our previous experiments, we quantified the impact of gravity vector on cell remodeling by placing an MC3T3-E1 cell onto upward (U)-, downward (D)-, or edge-on (E)- orientated substrate. Our experimental data demonstrate that orientation dependence of nucleus longitudinal translocation is positively correlated with cytoskeletal (CSK) remodeling of their expressions and structures and also is associated with rearrangement of focal adhesion complex (FAC). However, the underlying mechanism how CSK network and FACs are reorganized in a mammalian cell remains unclear. In this paper, we developed a theoretical biomechanical model to integrate the mechanosensing of nucleus translocation with CSK remodeling and FAC reorganization induced by a gravity vector. The cell was simplified as a nucleated tensegrity structure in the model. The cell and CSK filaments were considered to be symmetrical. All elements of CSK filaments and cytomembrane that support the nucleus were simplified as springs. FACs were simplified as an adhesion cluster of parallel bonds with shared force. Our model proposed that gravity vector-directed translocation of the cell nucleus is mechanically balanced by CSK remodeling and FAC reorganization induced by a gravitational force. Under gravity, dense nucleus tends to translocate and exert additional compressive or stretching force on the cytoskeleton. Finally, changes of the tension force acting on talin by microfilament alter the size of FACs. Results from our model are in qualitative agreement with those from experiments.

  6. Mechanisms of Mining Seismicity under Large Scale Exploitation with Multikey Strata

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hu He

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The dynamic disasters are aggravating with the increase of exploitation scale and intensity in Chinese coal mines, to further understand this problem, we studied the mechanisms of mining tremors induced by key strata movement and instability under large scale exploitation. First the mechanisms were categorized into two groups that is main key strata fracture and movement as well as subkey strata instability again under adjacent mining activities. Based on the key strata theory in ground control we revealed three basic mechanisms of key strata destabilization that are rotary and sliding of low subkey strata, shear sliding of the high subkey strata, and the main key strata rupture and cave at limit span, respectively. The microseismic observing systems were applied to monitor the mining tremor events and verify the theoretical analysis in different coal mines. The characteristics of time-space evolution of tremors show that low inferior key strata causing the most, followed by the high inferior key strata and the main key strata least, however the released energy was just opposite.

  7. An investigation of the mechanical behavior of initially curved microplates under electrostatic actuation

    KAUST Repository

    Saghir, Shahid

    2018-03-28

    In this article, we investigate the mechanical behavior of initially curved microplates under electrostatic actuation. Microplates are essential components of many Micro-Electro-Mechanical System devices; however, they commonly undergo an initial curvature imperfection, due to the microfabrication process. Initial curvature imperfection significantly affects the mechanical behavior of microplates. In this work, we derive a dynamic analogue of the von Kármán governing equation for such plates. These equations are then used to develop a reduced order model based on the Galerkin procedure to simulate the static and dynamic behavior of the microplate. Two profiles of initial curvature commonly encountered in microfabricated structures are considered, where one assumes a variation in shape along one dimension of the plate only (cylindrical bending shape) while the other assumes a variation in shape along both dimensions of the plate. Their effects on both the static and dynamic responses of the microplates are examined and compared. We validate the reduced order model by comparing the calculated static behavior and the fundamental natural frequency with those computed by a finite element model over a range of the initial plate rise. The static behavior of the microplate is investigated when varying the DC voltage. Then, the dynamic behavior of the microplate is examined under the application of a harmonic AC voltage superimposed to a DC voltage.

  8. Music and literature: are there shared empathy and predictive mechanisms underlying their affective impact?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana eOmigie

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available It has been suggested that music and language had a shared evolutionary precursor before becoming mainly responsible for the communication of emotive and referential meaning respectively. However, emphasis on potential differences between music and language may discourage a consideration of the commonalities that music and literature share. Indeed, one possibility is that common mechanisms underlie their affective impact, and the current paper carefully reviews relevant neuroscientific findings to examine such a prospect. First and foremost, it will be demonstrated that considerable evidence of a common role of empathy and predictive processes now exists for the two domains. However, it will also be noted that an important open question remains: namely, whether the mechanisms underlying the subjective experience of uncertainty differ between the two with respect to recruitment of phylogenetically ancient emotion areas. It will be concluded that a comparative approach may not only help to reveal general mechanisms underlying our responses to music and literature, but may also help us better understand any idiosyncrasies in their capacity for affective impact.

  9. The pathologic mechanisms underlying lumbar distraction spinal cord injury in rabbits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Di; Zheng, Chao; Wu, Ji; Xue, Jing; Huang, Rongrong; Wu, Di; Song, Yueming

    2017-11-01

    A reliable experimental rabbit model of distraction spinal cord injury (SCI) was established to successfully simulate gradable and replicable distraction SCI. However, further research is needed to elucidate the pathologic mechanisms underlying distraction SCI. The aim of this study was to investigate the pathologic mechanisms underlying lumbar distraction SCI in rabbits. This is an animal laboratory study. Using a self-designed spine distractor, the experimental animals were divided into a control group and 10%, 20%, and 30% distraction groups. Pathologic changes to the spinal cord microvessels in the early stage of distraction SCI were identified by perfusion of the spinal cord vasculature with ink, production of transparent specimens, observation by light microscopy, and observation of corrosion casts of the spinal cord microvascular architecture by scanning electron microscopy. Malondialdehyde (MDA) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) concentrations in the injured spinal cord tissue were measured after 8 hours. With an increasing degree and duration of distraction, the spinal cord microvessels were only partially filled and had the appearance of spasm until rupture and hemorrhage were observed. The MDA concentration increased and the SOD concentration decreased in the spinal cord tissue. Changes to the internal and external spinal cord vessels led to spinal cord ischemia, which is a primary pathologic mechanism of distraction SCI. Lipid peroxidation mediated by free radicals took part in secondary pathologic damage of distraction SCI. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Linear Analytical Solutions of Mechanical Sensitivity in Large Deflection of Unsymmetrically Layered Piezoelectric Plate under Pretension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Fu Chen

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Linear analytical study on the mechanical sensitivity in large deflection of unsymmetrically layered and laterally loaded piezoelectric plate under pretension is conducted. von Karman plate theory for large deflection is utilized but extended to the case of an unsymmetrically layered plate embedded with a piezoelectric layer. The governing equations thus obtained are simplified by omitting the arising nonlinear terms, yielding a Bessel or modified Bessel equation for the lateral slope. Depending on the relative magnitude of the piezoelectric effect, for both cases, analytical solutions of various geometrical responses are developed and formulated via Bessel and modified Bessel functions. The associated ultimate radial stresses are further derived following lamina constitutive law to evaluate the mechanical sensitivity of the considered plate. For a nearly monolithic plate under a very low applied voltage, the results are in good agreement with those for a single-layered case due to pure mechanical load available in literature, and thus the present approach is checked. For a two-layered unsymmetric plate made of typical silicon-based materials, a sound piezoelectric effect is illustrated particularly in a low pretension condition.

  11. Cellular and deafness mechanisms underlying connexin mutation induced hearing loss – A common hereditary deafness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey C Wingard

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Hearing loss due to mutations in the connexin gene family which encodes gap junctional proteins is a common form of hereditary deafness. In particular, connexin 26 (Cx26, GJB2 mutations are responsible for ~50% of nonsyndromic hearing loss, which is the highest incidence of genetic disease. In the clinic, Cx26 mutations cause various auditory phenotypes ranging from profound congenital deafness at birth to mild, progressive hearing loss in late childhood. Recent experiments demonstrate that congenital deafness mainly results from cochlear developmental disorders rather than hair cell degeneration and endocochlear potential (EP reduction, while late-onset hearing loss results from reduction of active cochlear amplification, even though cochlear hair cells have no connexin expression. Moreover, new experiments further demonstrate that the hypothesized K+-recycling disruption is not a principal deafness mechanism for connexin deficiency induced hearing loss. Additionally, there is no clear relationship between specific changes in connexin (channel functions and the phenotypes of mutation-induced hearing loss. Cx30, Cx29, Cx31, and Cx43 mutations can also cause hearing loss with distinct pathological changes in the cochlea. These new studies provide invaluable information about deafness mechanisms underlying connexin mutation induced hearing loss and also provide important information for developing new protective and therapeutic strategies for this common deafness. However, the detailed cellular mechanisms underlying these pathological changes and pathogeneses of specific-mutation induced hearing loss remain unclear. Finally, little information is available for humans. Further studies to address these deficiencies are urgently required.

  12. Mechanism Underlying the Spatial Pattern Formation of Dominant Tree Species in a Natural Secondary Forest.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guodong Jia

    Full Text Available Studying the spatial pattern of plant species may provide significant insights into processes and mechanisms that maintain stand stability. To better understand the dynamics of naturally regenerated secondary forests, univariate and bivariate Ripley's L(r functions were employed to evaluate intra-/interspecific relationships of four dominant tree species (Populus davidiana, Betula platyphylla, Larix gmelinii and Acer mono and to distinguish the underlying mechanism of spatial distribution. The results showed that the distribution of soil, water and nutrients was not fragmented but presented clear gradients. An overall aggregated distribution existed at most distances. No correlation was found between the spatial pattern of soil conditions and that of trees. Both positive and negative intra- and interspecific relationships were found between different DBH classes at various distances. Large trees did not show systematic inhibition of the saplings. By contrast, the inhibition intensified as the height differences increased between the compared pairs. Except for Larix, universal inhibition of saplings by upper layer trees occurred among other species, and this reflected the vertical competition for light. Therefore, we believe that competition for light rather than soil nutrients underlies the mechanism driving the formation of stand spatial pattern in the rocky mountainous areas examined.

  13. Linear and nonlinear causality between renewable energy consumption and economic growth in the USA

    OpenAIRE

    Xu, Haiyun

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to investigate Granger causality between renewable energy consumption (REC) and economic growth (EG) for USA. To accomplish this objective and to add the stronger evidence to the controversial issue, the tests were done under a new framework that embeds wavelet analysis, a novel tool, in nonlinear causality test approaches developed recently. The classical linear causality test procedure was also involved for comparison. The empirical data sources from the US...

  14. Signaling mechanism underlying the histamine-modulated action of hypoglossal motoneurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zi-Long; Wu, Xu; Luo, Yan-Jia; Wang, Lu; Qu, Wei-Min; Li, Shan-Qun; Huang, Zhi-Li

    2016-04-01

    Histamine, an important modulator of the arousal states of the central nervous system, has been reported to contribute an excitatory drive at the hypoglossal motor nucleus to the genioglossus (GG) muscle, which is involved in the pathogenesis of obstructive sleep apnea. However, the effect of histamine on hypoglossal motoneurons (HMNs) and the underlying signaling mechanisms have remained elusive. Here, whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were conducted using neonatal rat brain sections, which showed that histamine excited HMNs with an inward current under voltage-clamp and a depolarization membrane potential under current-clamp via histamine H1 receptors (H1Rs). The phospholipase C inhibitor U-73122 blocked H1Rs-mediated excitatory effects, but protein kinase A inhibitor and protein kinase C inhibitor did not, indicating that the signal transduction cascades underlying the excitatory action of histamine on HMNs were H1R/Gq/11 /phospholipase C/inositol-1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3). The effects of histamine were also dependent on extracellular Na(+) and intracellular Ca(2+), which took place via activation of Na(+)-Ca(2+) exchangers. These results identify the signaling molecules associated with the regulatory effect of histamine on HMNs. The findings of this study may provide new insights into therapeutic approaches in obstructive sleep apnea. We proposed the post-synaptic mechanisms underlying the modulation effect of histamine on hypoglossal motoneuron. Histamine activates the H1Rs via PLC and IP3, increases Ca(2+) releases from intracellular stores, promotes Na(+) influx and Ca(2+) efflux via the NCXs, and then produces an inward current and depolarizes the neurons. Histamine modulates the excitability of HMNs with other neuromodulators, such as noradrenaline, serotonin and orexin. We think that these findings should provide an important new direction for drug development for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea. © 2016 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  15. Ablation characteristics and reaction mechanism of insulation materials under slag deposition condition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, Yiwen; Li, Jiang; Liu, Yang

    2017-07-01

    Current understanding of the physical and chemical processes involved in the ablation of insulation materials by highly aluminized solid propellants is limited. The study on the heat transfer and ablation principle of ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) materials under slag deposition condition is essential for future design or modification of large solid rocket motors (SRMs) for launch application. In this paper, the alumina liquid flow pattern and the deposition principle in full-scale SRM engines are discussed. The interaction mechanism between the alumina droplets and the wall are analyzed. Then, an experimental method was developed to simulate the insulation material ablation under slag deposition condition. Experimental study was conducted based on a laboratory-scale device. Meanwhile, from the analysis of the cross-sectional morphology and chemical composition of the charring layer after ablation, the reaction mechanism of the charring layer under deposition condition was discussed, and the main reaction equation was derived. The numerical simulation and experimental results show the following. (i) The alumina droplet flow in the deposition section of the laboratory-scale device is similar to that of a full-scale SRM. (ii) The charring layer of the EPDM insulator displays a porous tight/loose structure under high-temperature slag deposition condition. (iii) A seven-step carbothermal reduction in the alumina is derived and established under high-pressure and high-temperature environment in the SRM combustion chamber. (iv) The analysis using thermodynamic software indicates that the reaction of the alumina and charring layer initially forms Al4C3 during the operation. Then, Al element and Al2OC compound are subsequently produced with the reduction in the release of gas CO as well with continuous environmental heating.

  16. Behavioural Pattern of Causality Parameter of Autoregressive ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In this paper, a causal form of Autoregressive Moving Average process, ARMA (p, q) of various orders and behaviour of the causality parameter of ARMA model is investigated. It is deduced that the behaviour of causality parameter ψi depends on positive and negative values of autoregressive parameter φ and moving ...

  17. Causal knowledge and reasoning in decision making

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hagmayer, Y.; Witteman, C.L.M.

    2017-01-01

    Normative causal decision theories argue that people should use their causal knowledge in decision making. Based on these ideas, we argue that causal knowledge and reasoning may support and thereby potentially improve decision making based on expected outcomes, narratives, and even cues. We will

  18. The argumentative impact of causal relations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Anne Ellerup

    1996-01-01

    such as causality, explanation and justification. In certain types of discourse, causal relations also imply an intentional element. This paper describes the way in which the semantic and pragmatic functions of causal markers can be accounted for in terms of linguistic and rhetorical theories of argumentation....

  19. Neuronal mechanisms underlying differences in spatial resolution between darks and lights in human vision.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pons, Carmen; Mazade, Reece; Jin, Jianzhong; Dul, Mitchell W; Zaidi, Qasim; Alonso, Jose-Manuel

    2017-12-01

    Artists and astronomers noticed centuries ago that humans perceive dark features in an image differently from light ones; however, the neuronal mechanisms underlying these dark/light asymmetries remained unknown. Based on computational modeling of neuronal responses, we have previously proposed that such perceptual dark/light asymmetries originate from a luminance/response saturation within the ON retinal pathway. Consistent with this prediction, here we show that stimulus conditions that increase ON luminance/response saturation (e.g., dark backgrounds) or its effect on light stimuli (e.g., optical blur) impair the perceptual discrimination and salience of light targets more than dark targets in human vision. We also show that, in cat visual cortex, the magnitude of the ON luminance/response saturation remains relatively constant under a wide range of luminance conditions that are common indoors, and only shifts away from the lowest luminance contrasts under low mesopic light. Finally, we show that the ON luminance/response saturation affects visual salience mostly when the high spatial frequencies of the image are reduced by poor illumination or optical blur. Because both low luminance and optical blur are risk factors in myopia, our results suggest a possible neuronal mechanism linking myopia progression with the function of the ON visual pathway.

  20. Mechanisms of weight maintenance under high- and low-protein, low-glycaemic index diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubio-Aliaga, Isabel; Marvin-Guy, Laure F; Wang, Ping; Wagniere, Sandrine; Mansourian, Robert; Fuerholz, Andreas; Saris, Wim H M; Astrup, Arne; Mariman, Edwin C M; Kussmann, Martin

    2011-11-01

    Weight maintenance after intended weight loss is a challenge in an obesogenic environment. In a large multicentre dietary intervention study (DiOGenes), it has recently been demonstrated that a high-protein/low-glycaemic index (HP/LGI) diet was slightly more efficient in maintaining weight loss than low-protein/LGI or high-GI (LP/LGI or HGI) diets. Here, we use a proteomic approach to assess the molecular mechanisms behind this positive effect. A subset of the most successful (weight loser, n=12) and unsuccessful (weight re-gainer, n=12) individuals consuming the LGI diets with either high- or low-protein content (HP or LP/LGI), following an initial calorie deficit run-in weight loss phase, were analyzed at the plasma protein level. Proteomic analysis revealed 18 proteins regulated after 6 months of the dietary weight maintenance phase. Furthermore, 12 proteins were significantly regulated as a function of success rate under an HP diet, arising as candidate biomarkers of mechanisms of successful weight maintenance under an HP/LGI diet. Pregnancy-zone protein (PZP) and protein S (PROS1) were revealed as novel biomarkers of weight maintenance showing opposite effects. Semantic network analysis of the 12 regulated proteins revealed that under an HP/LGI an anti-atherogenic effect and alterations of fat metabolism were associated with the success of maintaining the initial weight loss. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  1. Evidence for online processing during causal learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Pei-Pei; Luhmann, Christian C

    2015-03-01

    Many models of learning describe both the end product of learning (e.g., causal judgments) and the cognitive mechanisms that unfold on a trial-by-trial basis. However, the methods employed in the literature typically provide only indirect evidence about the unfolding cognitive processes. Here, we utilized a simultaneous secondary task to measure cognitive processing during a straightforward causal-learning task. The results from three experiments demonstrated that covariation information is not subject to uniform cognitive processing. Instead, we observed systematic variation in the processing dedicated to individual pieces of covariation information. In particular, observations that are inconsistent with previously presented covariation information appear to elicit greater cognitive processing than do observations that are consistent with previously presented covariation information. In addition, the degree of cognitive processing appears to be driven by learning per se, rather than by nonlearning processes such as memory and attention. Overall, these findings suggest that monitoring learning processes at a finer level may provide useful psychological insights into the nature of learning.

  2. Mechanical properties and fracture behaviour of defective phosphorene nanotubes under uniaxial tension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ping; Pei, Qing-Xiang; Huang, Wei; Zhang, Yong-Wei

    2017-12-01

    The easy formation of vacancy defects and the asymmetry in the two sublayers of phosphorene nanotubes (PNTs) may result in brand new mechanical properties and failure behaviour. Herein, we investigate the mechanical properties and fracture behaviour of defective PNTs under uniaxial tension using molecular dynamics simulations. Our simulation results show that atomic vacancies cause local stress concentration and thus significantly reduce the fracture strength and fracture strain of PNTs. More specifically, a 1% defect concentration is able to reduce the fracture strength and fracture strain by as much as 50% and 66%, respectively. Interestingly, the reduction in the mechanical properties is found to depend on the defect location: a defect located in the outer sublayer has a stronger effect than one located in the inner layer, especially for PNTs with a small diameter. Temperature is also found to strongly influence the mechanical properties of both defect-free and defective PNTs. When the temperature is increased from 0 K to 400 K, the fracture strength and fracture strain of defective PNTs with a defect concentration of 1% are reduced further by 71% and 61%, respectively. These findings are of great importance for the structural design of PNTs as building blocks in nanodevices.

  3. Peripheral afferent mechanisms underlying acupuncture inhibition of cocaine behavioral effects in rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seol Ah Kim

    Full Text Available Administration of cocaine increases locomotor activity by enhancing dopamine transmission. To explore the peripheral mechanisms underlying acupuncture treatment for drug addiction, we developed a novel mechanical acupuncture instrument (MAI for objective mechanical stimulation. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether acupuncture inhibition of cocaine-induced locomotor activity is mediated through specific peripheral nerves, the afferents from superficial or deep tissues, or specific groups of nerve fibers. Mechanical stimulation of acupuncture point HT7 with MAI suppressed cocaine-induced locomotor activity in a stimulus time-dependent manner, which was blocked by severing the ulnar nerve or by local anesthesia. Suppression of cocaine-induced locomotor activity was elicited after HT7 stimulation at frequencies of either 50 (for Meissner corpuscles or 200 (for Pacinian corpuscles Hz and was not affected by block of C/Aδ-fibers in the ulnar nerve with resiniferatoxin, nor generated by direct stimulation of C/Aδ-fiber afferents with capsaicin. These findings suggest that HT7 inhibition of cocaine-induced locomotor activity is mediated by A-fiber activation of ulnar nerve that originates in superficial and deep tissue.

  4. Kidney branching morphogenesis under the control of a ligand-receptor-based Turing mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menshykau, Denis; Iber, Dagmar

    2013-08-01

    The main signalling proteins that control early kidney branching have been defined. Yet the underlying mechanism is still elusive. We have previously shown that a Schnakenberg-type Turing mechanism can recapitulate the branching and protein expression patterns in wild-type and mutant lungs, but it is unclear whether this mechanism would extend to other branched organs that are regulated by other proteins. Here, we show that the glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor-RET regulatory interaction gives rise to a Schnakenberg-type Turing model that reproduces the observed budding of the ureteric bud from the Wolffian duct, its invasion into the mesenchyme and the observed branching pattern. The model also recapitulates all relevant protein expression patterns in wild-type and mutant mice. The lung and kidney models are both based on a particular receptor-ligand interaction and require (1) cooperative binding of ligand and receptor, (2) a lower diffusion coefficient for the receptor than for the ligand and (3) an increase in the receptor concentration in response to receptor-ligand binding (by enhanced transcription, more recycling or similar). These conditions are met also by other receptor-ligand systems. We propose that ligand-receptor-based Turing patterns represent a general mechanism to control branching morphogenesis and other developmental processes.

  5. An easily reversible structural change underlies mechanisms enabling desert crust cyanobacteria to survive desiccation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-Eyal, Leeat; Eisenberg, Ido; Faust, Adam; Raanan, Hagai; Nevo, Reinat; Rappaport, Fabrice; Krieger-Liszkay, Anja; Sétif, Pierre; Thurotte, Adrien; Reich, Ziv; Kaplan, Aaron; Ohad, Itzhak; Paltiel, Yossi; Keren, Nir

    2015-10-01

    Biological desert sand crusts are the foundation of desert ecosystems, stabilizing the sands and allowing colonization by higher order organisms. The first colonizers of the desert sands are cyanobacteria. Facing the harsh conditions of the desert, these organisms must withstand frequent desiccation-hydration cycles, combined with high light intensities. Here, we characterize structural and functional modifications to the photosynthetic apparatus that enable a cyanobacterium, Leptolyngbya sp., to thrive under these conditions. Using multiple in vivo spectroscopic and imaging techniques, we identified two complementary mechanisms for dissipating absorbed energy in the desiccated state. The first mechanism involves the reorganization of the phycobilisome antenna system, increasing excitonic coupling between antenna components. This provides better energy dissipation in the antenna rather than directed exciton transfer to the reaction center. The second mechanism is driven by constriction of the thylakoid lumen which limits diffusion of plastocyanin to P700. The accumulation of P700(+) not only prevents light-induced charge separation but also efficiently quenches excitation energy. These protection mechanisms employ existing components of the photosynthetic apparatus, forming two distinct functional modes. Small changes in the structure of the thylakoid membranes are sufficient for quenching of all absorbed energy in the desiccated state, protecting the photosynthetic apparatus from photoinhibitory damage. These changes can be easily reversed upon rehydration, returning the system to its high photosynthetic quantum efficiency. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Signaling Mechanisms Underlying Resistance Responses: What Have We Learned, and How Is It Being Applied?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kachroo, Aardra; Vincelli, Paul; Kachroo, Pradeep

    2017-12-01

    Plants have evolved highly specific mechanisms to resist pathogens including preformed barriers and the induction of elaborate signaling pathways. Induced signaling requires recognition of the pathogen either via conserved pathogen-derived factors or specific pathogen-encoded proteins called effectors. Recognition of these factors by host encoded receptor proteins can result in the elicitation of different tiers of resistance at the site of pathogen infection. In addition, plants induce a type of systemic immunity which is effective at the whole plant level and protects against a broad spectrum of pathogens. Advances in our understanding of pathogen-recognition mechanisms, identification of the underlying molecular components, and their significant conservation across diverse plant species has enabled the development of novel strategies to combat plant diseases. This review discusses key advances in plant defense signaling that have been adapted or have the potential to be adapted for plant protection against microbial diseases.

  7. A hypothesis regarding the molecular mechanism underlying dietary soy-induced effects on seizure propensity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cara Jean Westmark

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Numerous neurological disorders including fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome, autism and Alzheimer’s disease are comorbid with epilepsy. We have observed elevated seizure propensity in mouse models of these disorders dependent on diet. Specifically, soy-based diets exacerbate audiogenic-induced seizures in juvenile mice. We have also found potential associations between the consumption of soy-based infant formula and seizure incidence, epilepsy comorbidity and autism diagnostic scores in autistic children by retrospective analyses of medical record data. In total, these data suggest that consumption of high levels of soy protein during postnatal development may affect neuronal excitability. Herein, we present our theory regarding the molecular mechanism underlying soy-induced effects on seizure propensity. We hypothesize that soy phytoestrogens interfere with metabotropic glutamate receptor signaling through an estrogen receptor-dependent mechanism, which results in elevated production of key synaptic proteins and decreased seizure threshold.

  8. Mechanisms Underlying the Anti-Aging and Anti-Tumor Effects of Lithocholic Bile Acid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony Arlia-Ciommo

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Bile acids are cholesterol-derived bioactive lipids that play essential roles in the maintenance of a heathy lifespan. These amphipathic molecules with detergent-like properties display numerous beneficial effects on various longevity- and healthspan-promoting processes in evolutionarily distant organisms. Recent studies revealed that lithocholic bile acid not only causes a considerable lifespan extension in yeast, but also exhibits a substantial cytotoxic effect in cultured cancer cells derived from different tissues and organisms. The molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the robust anti-aging and anti-tumor effects of lithocholic acid have emerged. This review summarizes the current knowledge of these mechanisms, outlines the most important unanswered questions and suggests directions for future research.

  9. Fatigue degradation and failure of rotating composite structures - Materials characterisation and underlying mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gamstedt, Kristofer; Andersen, Svend Ib Smidt

    2001-01-01

    The present review concerns rotating composite structures, in which fatigue degradation is of key concern for in-service failure. Such applications are for instance rotor blades in wind turbines, helicopter rotor blades, flywheels for energy storage,marine and aeronautical propellers, and rolls...... for paper machines. The purpose is to identify areas where impending efforts should be made to make better use of composite materials in these applications. In order to obtain better design methodologies,which would allow more reliable and slender structures, improved test methods are necessary. Furthermore......, the relation between structural, component and specimen test results should be better understood than what is presently the case. Improvedpredictive methods rely on a better understanding of the underlying damage mechanisms. With mechanism-based models, the component substructure or even the material...

  10. Molecular and Microbial Mechanisms Increasing Soil C Storage Under Future Rates of Anthropogenic N Deposition

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zak, Donald R.

    2017-11-17

    A growing body of evidence reveals that anthropogenic N deposition can reduce the microbial decay of plant detritus and increase soil C storage across a wide range of terrestrial ecosystems. This aspect of global change has the potential to constrain the accumulation of anthropogenic CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere, and hence slow the pace of climate warming. The molecular and microbial mechanisms underlying this biogeochemical response are not understood, and they are not a component of any coupled climate-biogeochemical model estimating ecosystem C storage, and hence, the future climate of an N-enriched Earth. Here, we report the use of genomic-enabled approaches to identify the molecular underpinnings of the microbial mechanisms leading to greater soil C storage in response to anthropogenic N deposition, thereby enabling us to better anticipate changes in soil C storage.

  11. Mechanisms underlying REBT in mood disordered patients: predicting depression from the hybrid model of learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Chris J; Izadikah, Zahra; Oei, Tian P S

    2012-06-01

    Jackson's (2005, 2008a) hybrid model of learning identifies a number of learning mechanisms that lead to the emergence and maintenance of the balance between rationality and irrationality. We test a general hypothesis that Jackson's model will predict depressive symptoms, such that poor learning is related to depression. We draw comparisons between Jackson's model and Ellis' (2004) Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy and Theory (REBT) and thereby provide a set of testable learning mechanisms potentially underlying REBT. Results from 80 patients diagnosed with depression completed the learning styles profiler (LSP; Jackson, 2005) and two measures of depression. Results provide support for the proposed model of learning and further evidence that low rationality is a key predictor of depression. We conclude that the hybrid model of learning has the potential to explain some of the learning and cognitive processes related to the development and maintenance of irrational beliefs and depression. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  12. Transcriptomic and hormone analyses reveal mechanisms underlying petal elongation in Chrysanthemum morifolium 'Jinba'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jingjing; Wang, Haibin; Ding, Lian; Song, Aiping; Shen, Feng; Jiang, Jiafu; Chen, Sumei; Chen, Fadi

    2017-04-01

    Auxin regulates chrysanthemum petal elongation by promoting cell elongation. Transcriptomic analysis shows that auxin signal transduction may connect with other transcription factors by TCPs to regulate chrysanthemum petal elongation. As an ornamental species, Chrysanthemum morifolium has high ornamental and economic value. Petal size is the primary factor that influences the ornamental value of chrysanthemum, but the mechanism underlying the development of C. morifolium petals remains unclear. In our study, we tracked the growth of petals and found that the basal region of 'Jinba' petals showed a higher elongation rate, exhibiting rapid cell elongation during petal growth. During petal elongation growth, auxin was demonstrated to promote cell elongation and an increase in cell numbers in the petal basal region. To further study the molecular mechanisms underlying petal growth, the RNA-seq (high-throughput cDNA sequencing) technique was employed. Four cDNA libraries were assembled from petals in the budding, bud breaking, early blooming and full blooming stages of 'Jinba' flower development. Analysis of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) showed that auxin was the most important regulator in controlling petal growth. The TEOSINTEBRANCHED 1, CYCLOIDEA and PCF transcription factor genes (TCPs), basic helix-loop-helix-encoding gene (bHLH), glutaredoxin-C (GRXC) and other zinc finger protein genes exhibited obvious up-regulation and might have significant effects on the growth of 'Jinba' petals. Given the interaction between these genes in Arabidopsis thaliana, we speculated that auxin signal transduction might exhibit a close relationship with transcription factors through TCPs. In summary, we present the first comprehensive transcriptomic and hormone analyses of C. morifolium petals. The results offer direction in identifying the mechanism underlying the development of chrysanthemum petals in the elongated phase and have great significance in improving the

  13. Mechanical properties of the human spinal cord under the compressive loading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karimi, Alireza; Shojaei, Ahmad; Tehrani, Pedram

    2017-12-01

    The spinal cord as the most complex and critical part of the human body is responsible for the transmission of both motor and sensory impulses between the body and the brain. Due to its pivotal role any types of physical injury in that disrupts its function following by shortfalls, including the minor motor and sensory malfunctions as well as complicate quadriplegia and lifelong ventilator dependency. In order to shed light on the injuries to the spinal cord, the application of the computational models to simulate the trauma impact loading to that are deemed required. Nonetheless, it has not been fulfilled since there is a paucity of knowledge about the mechanical properties of the spinal cord, especially the cervical one, under the compressive loading on the grounds of the difficulty in obtaining this tissue from the human body. This study was aimed at experimentally measuring the mechanical properties of the human cervical spinal cord of 24 isolated fresh samples under the unconfined compressive loading at a relatively low strain rate. The stress-strain data revealed the elastic modulus and maximum/failure stress of 40.12±6.90 and 62.26±5.02kPa, respectively. Owing to the nonlinear response of the spinal cord, the Yeoh, Ogden, and Mooney-Rivlin hyperelastic material models have also been employed. The results may have implications not only for understanding the linear elastic and nonlinear hyperelastic mechanical properties of the cervical spinal cord under the compressive loading, but also for providing a raw data for investigating the injury as a result of the trauma thru the numerical simulations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Modeling of the mechanical behavior of austenitic stainless steels under pure fatigue and fatigue relaxation loadings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hajjaji-Rachdi, Fatima

    2015-01-01

    Austenitic stainless steels are potential candidates for structural components of sodium-cooled fast neutron reactors. Many of these components will be subjected to cyclic loadings including long hold times (1 month) under creep or relaxation at high temperature. These hold times are unattainable experimentally. The aim of the present study is to propose mechanical models which take into account the involved mechanisms and their interactions during such complex loadings. First, an experimental study of the pure fatigue and fatigue-relaxation behavior of 316L(N) at 500 C has been carried out with very long hold times (10 h and 50 h) compared with the ones studied in literature. Tensile tests at 600 C with different applied strain rates have been undertaken in order to study the dynamic strain ageing phenomenon. Before focusing on more complex loadings, the mean field homogenization approach has been used to predict the mechanical behavior of different FCC metals and alloys under low cycle fatigue at room temperature. Both Hill-Hutchinson and Kroener models have been used. Next, a physically-based model based on dislocation densities has been developed and its parameters measured. The model allows predictions in a qualitative agreement with experimental data for tensile loadings. Finally, this model has been enriched to take into account visco-plasticity, dislocation climb and interaction between dislocations and solute atoms, which are influent during creep-fatigue or fatigue relaxation at high temperature. The proposed model uses three adjustable parameters only and allows rather accurate prediction of the behavior of 316L(N) steel under tensile loading and relaxation. (author) [fr

  15. Enhancing scientific reasoning by refining students' models of multivariable causality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keselman, Alla

    Inquiry learning as an educational method is gaining increasing support among elementary and middle school educators. In inquiry activities at the middle school level, students are typically asked to conduct investigations and infer causal relationships about multivariable causal systems. In these activities, students usually demonstrate significant strategic weaknesses and insufficient metastrategic understanding of task demands. Present work suggests that these weaknesses arise from students' deficient mental models of multivariable causality, in which effects of individual features are neither additive, nor constant. This study is an attempt to develop an intervention aimed at enhancing scientific reasoning by refining students' models of multivariable causality. Three groups of students engaged in a scientific investigation activity over seven weekly sessions. By creating unique combinations of five features potentially involved in earthquake mechanism and observing associated risk meter readings, students had to find out which of the features were causal, and to learn to predict earthquake risk. Additionally, students in the instructional and practice groups engaged in self-directed practice in making scientific predictions. The instructional group also participated in weekly instructional sessions on making predictions based on multivariable causality. Students in the practice and instructional conditions showed small to moderate improvement in their attention to the evidence and in their metastrategic ability to recognize effective investigative strategies in the work of other students. They also demonstrated a trend towards making a greater number of valid inferences than the control group students. Additionally, students in the instructional condition showed significant improvement in their ability to draw inferences based on multiple records. They also developed more accurate knowledge about non-causal features of the system. These gains were maintained

  16. Evaluation of Possible Proximate Mechanisms Underlying the Kinship Theory of Intragenomic Conflict in Social Insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galbraith, David A; Yi, Soojin V; Grozinger, Christina M

    2016-12-01

    Kinship theory provides a universal framework in which to understand the evolution of altruism, but there are many molecular and genetic mechanisms that can generate altruistic behaviors. Interestingly, kinship theory specifically predicts intragenomic conflict between maternally-derived alleles (matrigenes) and paternally-derived alleles (patrigenes) over the generation of altruistic behavior in cases where the interests of the matrigenes and patrigenes are not aligned. Under these conditions, individual differences in selfish versus altruistic behavior are predicted to arise from differential expression of the matrigenes and patrigenes (parent-specific gene expression or PSGE) that regulate selfish versus altruistic behaviors. As one of the leading theories to describe PSGE and genomic imprinting, kinship theory has been used to generate predictions to describe the reproductive division of labor in social insect colonies, which represents an excellent model system to test the hypotheses of kinship theory and examine the underlying mechanisms driving it. Recent studies have confirmed the predicted differences in the influence of matrigenes and patrigenes on reproductive division of labor in social insects, and demonstrated that these differences are associated with differences in PSGE of key genes involved in regulating reproductive physiology, providing further support for kinship theory. However, the mechanisms mediating PSGE in social insects, and how PSGE leads to differences in selfish versus altruistic behavior, remain to be determined. Here, we review the available supporting evidence for three possible epigenetic mechanisms (DNA methylation, piRNAs, and histone modification) that may generate PSGE in social insects, and discuss how these may lead to variation in social behavior. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email

  17. Norms and customs: causally important or causally impotent?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Todd

    2010-01-01

    In this article, I argue that norms and customs, despite frequently being described as being causes of behavior in the social sciences and ordinary conversation, cannot really cause behavior. Terms like "norms" and the like seem to refer to philosophically disreputable disjunctive properties. More problematically, even if they do not, or even if there can be disjunctive properties after all, I argue that norms and customs still cannot cause behavior. The social sciences would be better off without referring to properties like norms and customs as if they could be causal.

  18. Experimental study of the anisotropic properties of argillite under moisture and mechanical loads

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang, D.S.; Chanchole, S.; Wang, L.L.; Bornert, M.; Gatmiri, B.

    2012-01-01

    Document available in extended abstract form only. Due to various factors, such as sedimentation, layered morphology of clay mineral, in-situ stress, etc., the behavior of argillite rocks is often anisotropic. In order to study the anisotropy of the Callovo-Oxfordian (COx) argillite considered as a possible host rock for high-level radioactive nuclear waste repository in France, a series of tests including uniaxial compression and dehydration and hydration at different constant applied stress levels, are carried out using a specific setup combining mechanical and moisture loading devices. During these hydro-mechanical tests, this specific setup can also continuously capture images of the sample surfaces to be subsequently analyzed using Digital Image Correlation techniques (DIC) in order to determine full-field strains. In this study, three sampling directions are used with the angle θ between the bedding plane and the cylindrical sample axis equal to 45 deg., 60 deg. and 90 deg.. To investigate the mechanical anisotropy, uniaxial compressive tests with mechanical loading and unloading cycles are performed on several different samples at the same moisture level. The results show that the mechanical parameters (apparent modulus, failure stress) depend on loading orientation relative to the stratification plane. For a given water content, the failure stress reaches maximum values for θ =90 deg. and minimum values for θ =45 deg.. To study the hydric anisotropy, dehydration and hydration tests under stress-free conditions are performed on two cylindrical samples (θ=90 deg. and θ=60 deg.). Three cycles of hydration and dehydration are carried out by varying the relative humidity between 40% and 95%. The sample weight, the deformation measured by strain gages and the relative humidity are continuously recorded during the test by means of another specific setup described in [Pham et al., 2007]. Fig.1a illustrates the evolution of the strains of the sample EST28030-No

  19. The underlying mechanisms for development of hypertension in the metabolic syndrome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshida Hiroshi

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract High blood pressure is an important constituent of the metabolic syndrome. However, the underlying mechanisms for development of hypertension in the metabolic syndrome are very complicated and remain still obscure. Visceral/central obesity, insulin resistance, sympathetic overactivity, oxidative stress, endothelial dysfunction, activated renin-angiotensin system, increased inflammatory mediators, and obstructive sleep apnea have been suggested to be possible factors to develop hypertension in the metabolic syndrome. Here, we will discuss how these factors influence on development of hypertension in the metabolic syndrome.

  20. Experimental Evaluation of Mechanical Properties of Friction Welded Dissimilar Steels under Varying Axial Pressures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Handa Amit

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The present study emphasizes on joints two industrially important materials AISI 304 with AISI 1021steels, produced by friction welding have been investigated. Samples were welded under different axial pressures ranging from 75MPa to 135MPa, at constant speed of 920rpm. The tensile strength, torsional strength, impact strength and micro hardness values of the weldments were determined and evaluated. Simultaneously the fractrography of the tensile tested specimens were carried out, so as to understand the failure analysis. It was observed that improved mechanical properties were noticed at higher axial pressures. Ductile failures of weldments were also observed at 120MPa and 135MPa axial pressures during fractography analysis.

  1. Mechanical behavior of irradiated fuel-pin cladding evaluated under transient heating and pressure conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hamilton, M.L.; Johnson, G.D.; Hunter, C.W.; Duncan, D.R.

    1982-11-01

    Fast breeder fuel-pin cladding has been tested under experimental conditions simulating the temperature and pressure history characteristic of anticipated transient events. Irradiation induces severe reductions in both strength and ductility. Ductility losses are independent of the rate of temperature increase and saturate by a fluence of approx. 2 x 10 22 n/cm 2 (E > 0.1 MeV). Losses in strength are dependent on the rate of temperature increase but saturate at a fluence of approx.5 x 10 22 n/cm 2 . Evidence is presented to show that fission products are probably responsible for the degradation in mechanical properties

  2. Fracture mechanics characterization of crack growth under creep and fatigue conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hollstein, T.; Kienzler, R.

    1987-01-01

    Based on theoretical considerations and experimental evidence, several concepts have been investigated to correlate crack growth under high-temperature conditions with material parameters of fracture mechanics, e.g., stress-intensity factor K, and line integrals J and C * . It could be shown for different materials that these parameters describe the behavior of cracks independent of geometry and loading conditions within certain limits of validity. The laboratory results then can be transferred to real structures for (residual) lifetime predictions or safety analyses (Incoloy 800H, Thermon 4972, 9% chromium steel). With 45 refs., 3 tabs., 56 figs [de

  3. Morphological features and mechanics of destruction of materials with different structures under impact drop cyclic loading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Varavka Valery N.

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The process of erosion destruction of steels with austenitic, sorbitol and martensitic structure under the influence of high-speed liquid-drop collisions is studied. The characteristics of the morphological features and mechanisms of the process of surface degradation of steels with different structures are given. Their classification criterion is proposed on the basis of the diagrams of limiting states. Based on the theory of Paris-Erdogan, the computational and analytical model of the fatigue fracture of martensitic steel has been developed.

  4. Radiation pneumonitis and fibrosis: mechanisms underlying its pathogenesis and implications for future research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsoutsou, Pelagia G; Koukourakis, Michael I

    2006-12-01

    Radiation pneumonitis and subsequent radiation pulmonary fibrosis are the two main dose-limiting factors when irradiating the thorax that can have severe implications for patients' quality of life. In this article, the current concepts about the pathogenetic mechanisms underlying radiation pneumonitis and fibrosis are presented. The clinical course of fibrosis, a postulated acute inflammatory stage, and a late fibrotic and irreversible stage are discussed. The interplay of cells and the wide variety of molecules orchestrating the immunologic response to radiation, their interactions with specific receptors, and the cascade of events they trigger are elucidated. Finally, the implications of this knowledge with respect to the therapeutic interventions are critically presented.

  5. Acoustic and Vibration Control for an Underwater Structure under Mechanical Excitation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi-Jian Zhu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Acoustic and vibration control for an underwater structure under mechanical excitation has been investigated by using negative feedback control algorithm. The underwater structure is modeled with cylindrical shells, conical shells, and circular bulkheads, of which the motion equations are built with the variational approach, respectively. Acoustic property is analyzed by the Helmholtz integration formulation with boundary element method. Based on negative feedback control algorithm, a control loop with a coupling use of piezoelectric sensor and actuator is built, and accordingly some numerical examples are carried out on active control of structural vibration and acoustic response. Effects of geometrical and material parameters on acoustic and vibration properties are investigated and discussed.

  6. An Investigation of the Mechanism Underlying Teacher Aggression: Testing I[superscript 3] Theory and the General Aggression Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montuoro, Paul; Mainhard, Tim

    2017-01-01

    Background: Considerable research has investigated the deleterious effects of teachers responding aggressively to students who misbehave, but the mechanism underlying this dysfunctional behaviour remains unknown. Aims: This study investigated whether the mechanism underlying teacher aggression follows I[superscript 3] theory or General Aggression…

  7. Optimal Contract Design for Cooperative Relay Incentive Mechanism under Moral Hazard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nan Zhao

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Cooperative relay can effectively improve spectrum efficiency by exploiting the spatial diversity in the wireless networks. However, wireless nodes may acquire different network information with various users’ location and mobility, channels’ conditions, and other factors, which results in asymmetric information between the source and the relay nodes (RNs. In this paper, the relay incentive mechanism between relay nodes and the source is investigated under the asymmetric information. By modelling multiuser cooperative relay as a labour market, a contract model with moral hazard for relay incentive is proposed. To effectively incentivize the potential RNs to participate in cooperative relay, the optimization problems are formulated to maximize the source’s utility while meeting the feasible conditions under both symmetric and asymmetric information scenarios. Numerical simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed contract design scheme for cooperative relay.

  8. Computational modeling of dynamic mechanical properties of pure polycrystalline magnesium under high loading strain rates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Qizhen

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Computational simulations were performed to investigate the dynamic mechanical behavior of pure polycrystalline magnesium under different high loading strain rates with the values of 800, 1000, 2000, and 3600 s−1. The Johnson-Cook model was utilized in the simulations based on finite element modeling. The results showed that the simulations provided well-matched predictions of the material behavior such as the strain rate-time history, the stress-strain curve, and the temperature increase. Under high loading strain rates, the tested material experienced linear strain hardening at the early stage of plastic deformation, increased strain hardening at the intermediate plastic deformation region, and decreased strain hardening at the region before fracture. The strain hardening rates for the studied high loading strain rate cases do not vary much with the change of strain rates.

  9. Experimental Investigation of Mechanical Properties of PVC Polymer under Different Heating and Cooling Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarkawt Rostam

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Due to a widely increasing usage of polymers in various industrial applications, there should be a continuous need in doing research investigations for better understanding of their properties. These applications require the usage of the polymer in different working environments subjecting the material to various temperature ranges. In this paper, an experimental investigation of mechanical properties of polyvinyl chloride (PVC polymer under heating and cooling conditions is presented. For this purpose standard samples are prepared and tested in laboratory using universal material testing apparatus. The samples are tested under different conditions including the room temperature environment, cooling in a refrigerator, and heating at different heating temperatures. It is observed that the strength of the tested samples decreases with the increasing of heating temperature and accordingly the material becomes softer. Meanwhile the cooling environments give a clear increasing to the strength of the material.

  10. Macrocrack propagation in concrete specimens under sustained loading: Study of the physical mechanisms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rossi, Pierre; Boulay, Claude; Tailhan, Jean-Louis; Martin, Eric; Desnoyers, Dominic

    2014-01-01

    This study presents a series of 4-point bending tests performed to describe the delayed behavior of unreinforced pre-cracked beams under low, moderate and high sustained loading levels. The deflection creep rate, the failure time and the load level were assessed. A linear relation, in a semi-log scale, was found for the deflection creep rate at high load levels. In addition, a linear relation, in a log–log scale, between the secondary deflection creep rate and failure time was observed. Besides, it was shown that the secondary creep deflection rate increases with the sustained loading level and the macrocrack propagation rate when macrocrack propagation occurs during the sustained loading. Physical mechanisms are proposed to explain these results and may be summarized as follows: the delayed behavior of an unreinforced cracked concrete specimen under sustained loading is mainly due to the cracking evolution, thus the creation of microcracks and/or the propagation of a macrocrack

  11. Diagnostic reasoning using qualitative causal models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sudduth, A.L.

    1992-01-01

    The application of expert systems to reasoning problems involving real-time data from plant measurements has been a topic of much research, but few practical systems have been deployed. One obstacle to wider use of expert systems in applications involving real-time data is the lack of adequate knowledge representation methodologies for dynamic processes. Knowledge bases composed mainly of rules have disadvantages when applied to dynamic processes and real-time data. This paper describes a methodology for the development of qualitative causal models that can be used as knowledge bases for reasoning about process dynamic behavior. These models provide a systematic method for knowledge base construction, considerably reducing the engineering effort required. They also offer much better opportunities for verification and validation of the knowledge base, thus increasing the possibility of the application of expert systems to reasoning about mission critical systems. Starting with the Signed Directed Graph (SDG) method that has been successfully applied to describe the behavior of diverse dynamic processes, the paper shows how certain non-physical behaviors that result from abstraction may be eliminated by applying causal constraint to the models. The resulting Extended Signed Directed Graph (ESDG) may then be compiled to produce a model for use in process fault diagnosis. This model based reasoning methodology is used in the MOBIAS system being developed by Duke Power Company under EPRI sponsorship. 15 refs., 4 figs

  12. A theory of causal learning in children: causal maps and Bayes nets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopnik, Alison; Glymour, Clark; Sobel, David M; Schulz, Laura E; Kushnir, Tamar; Danks, David

    2004-01-01

    The authors outline a cognitive and computational account of causal learning in children. They propose that children use specialized cognitive systems that allow them to recover an accurate "causal map" of the world: an abstract, coherent, learned representation of the causal relations among events. This kind of knowledge can be perspicuously understood in terms of the formalism of directed graphical causal models, or Bayes nets. Children's causal learning and inference may involve computations similar to those for learning causal Bayes nets and for predicting with them. Experimental results suggest that 2- to 4-year-old children construct new causal maps and that their learning is consistent with the Bayes net formalism.

  13. A novel approach to mechanical foot stimulation during human locomotion under body weight support.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gravano, S; Ivanenko, Y P; Maccioni, G; Macellari, V; Poppele, R E; Lacquaniti, F

    2011-04-01

    Input from the foot plays an essential part in perceiving support surfaces and determining kinematic events in human walking. To simulate adequate tactile pressure inputs under body weight support (BWS) conditions that represent an effective form of locomotion training, we here developed a new method of phasic mechanical foot stimulation using light-weight pneumatic insoles placed inside the shoes (under the heel and metatarsus). To test the system, we asked healthy participants to walk on a treadmill with different levels of BWS. The pressure under the stimulated areas of the feet and subjective sensations were higher at high levels of BWS and when applied to the ball and toes rather than heels. Foot stimulation did not disturb significantly the normal motor pattern, and in all participants we evoked a reliable step-synchronized triggering of stimuli for each leg separately. This approach has been performed in a general framework looking for "afferent templates" of human locomotion that could be used for functional sensory stimulation. The proposed technique can be used to imitate or partially restore surrogate contact forces under body weight support conditions. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Capturing connectivity and causality in complex industrial processes

    CERN Document Server

    Yang, Fan; Shah, Sirish L; Chen, Tongwen

    2014-01-01

    This brief reviews concepts of inter-relationship in modern industrial processes, biological and social systems. Specifically ideas of connectivity and causality within and between elements of a complex system are treated; these ideas are of great importance in analysing and influencing mechanisms, structural properties and their dynamic behaviour, especially for fault diagnosis and hazard analysis. Fault detection and isolation for industrial processes being concerned with root causes and fault propagation, the brief shows that, process connectivity and causality information can be captured in two ways: ·      from process knowledge: structural modeling based on first-principles structural models can be merged with adjacency/reachability matrices or topology models obtained from process flow-sheets described in standard formats; and ·      from process data: cross-correlation analysis, Granger causality and its extensions, frequency domain methods, information-theoretical methods, and Bayesian ne...

  15. The why of things: causality in science, medicine, and life

    CERN Document Server

    Rabins, Peter V.

    2013-01-01

    Why was there a meltdown at the Fukushima power plant? Why do some people get cancer and not others? Why is global warming happening? Why does one person get depressed in the face of life's vicissitudes while another finds resilience? Questions like these -- questions of causality -- form the basis of modern scientific inquiry, posing profound intellectual and methodological challenges for researchers in the physical, natural, biomedical, and social sciences. In this groundbreaking book, noted psychiatrist and author Peter Rabins offers a conceptual framework for analyzing daunting questions of causality. Navigating a lively intellectual voyage between the shoals of strict reductionism and relativism, Rabins maps a three-facet model of causality and applies it to a variety of questions in science, medicine, economics, and more. Throughout this book, Rabins situates his argument within relevant scientific contexts, such as quantum mechanics, cybernetics, chaos theory, and epigenetics. A renowned communicator o...

  16. Concepts in causality: chemically induced human urinary bladder cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lower, G.M. Jr.

    1982-01-01

    A significant portion of the incidence of human urinary bladder cancer can be attributed to occupational and cultural (tobacco smoking) situations associated with exposures to various arylamines, many of which represent established human carcinogens. A brief historical overview of research in bladder cancer causality indicates that the identification of causal agents and causal mechanism has been approached and rests upon information gathered at the organismal (geographical/historical), cellular, and molecular levels of biologic organization. This viewpoint speaks of a natural evolution within the biomedical sciences; a natural evolution from descriptive approaches to mechanistic approaches; and a natural evolution from more or less independent discipline-oriented approaches to hierarchically organized multidisciplinary approaches. Available information relevant to bladder cancer causality can be readily integrated into general conceptual frameworks to yield a hierarchial view of the natural history of urinary bladder cancer, a view consistent with contemporary natural systems and information theory and perhaps relevant also to other chemically induced epithelial cancers. Such frameworks are useful in appreciating the spatial and temporal boundaries and interrelationships in causality and the conceptual interrelationships within the biomedical sciences. Recent approaches in molecular epidemiology and the assessment of relative individual susceptibility to bladder cancer indicate that such frameworks are useful in forming hypotheses

  17. On the entanglement entropy of quantum fields in causal sets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belenchia, Alessio; Benincasa, Dionigi M. T.; Letizia, Marco; Liberati, Stefano

    2018-04-01

    In order to understand the detailed mechanism by which a fundamental discreteness can provide a finite entanglement entropy, we consider the entanglement entropy of two classes of free massless scalar fields on causal sets that are well approximated by causal diamonds in Minkowski spacetime of dimensions 2, 3 and 4. The first class is defined from discretised versions of the continuum retarded Green functions, while the second uses the causal set’s retarded nonlocal d’Alembertians parametrised by a length scale l k . In both cases we provide numerical evidence that the area law is recovered when the double-cutoff prescription proposed in Sorkin and Yazdi (2016 Entanglement entropy in causal set theory (arXiv:1611.10281)) is imposed. We discuss in detail the need for this double cutoff by studying the effect of two cutoffs on the quantum field and, in particular, on the entanglement entropy, in isolation. In so doing, we get a novel interpretation for why these two cutoff are necessary, and the different roles they play in making the entanglement entropy on causal sets finite.

  18. Causality between public policies and exports of renewable energy technologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sung, Bongsuk; Song, Woo-Yong

    2013-01-01

    This article investigates the causal relationship between public policies and exports of renewable energy technologies using panel data from 18 countries for the period 1991–2007. A number of panel unit root and cointegration tests are applied. Time series data on public policies and exports are integrated and cointegrated. The dynamic OLS results indicate that in the long run, a 1% increase in government R and D expenditures (RAD) increases exports (EX) by 0.819%. EX and RAD variables respond to deviations from the long-run equilibrium in the previous period. Additionally, the Blundell–Bond system generalized methods of moments (GMM) is employed to conduct a panel causality test in a vector error-correction mechanism (VECM) setting. Evidence of a bidirectional and short-run, and strong causal relationship between EX and the contribution of renewable energy to the total energy supply (CRES) is uncovered. CRES has a negative effect on EX, whereas EX has a positive effect on CRES. We suggest some policy implications based on the results of this study. - Highlights: ► We model VECM to test the Granger causality between the policies and the export. ► Technology-push policy has a positive impact on export in the long-run. ► There are the short-run causal relationships between market-pull policy and export

  19. A theory of causal learning in children: Causal maps and Bayes nets

    OpenAIRE

    Gopnik, A; Glymour, C; Sobel, D M; Schulz, L E; Kushnir, T; Danks, D

    2004-01-01

    The authors outline a cognitive and computational account of causal learning in children. They propose that children use specialized cognitive systems that allow them to recover an accurate "causal map" of the world: an abstract, coherent, learned representation of the causal relations among events. This kind of knowledge can be perspicuously understood in terms of the formalism of directed graphical causal models, or Bayes nets. Children's causal learning and inference may involve computatio...

  20. Reward-Guided Learning with and without Causal Attribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jocham, Gerhard; Brodersen, Kay H.; Constantinescu, Alexandra O.; Kahn, Martin C.; Ianni, Angela M.; Walton, Mark E.; Rushworth, Matthew F.S.; Behrens, Timothy E.J.

    2016-01-01

    Summary When an organism receives a reward, it is crucial to know which of many candidate actions caused this reward. However, recent work suggests that learning is possible even when this most fundamental assumption is not met. We used novel reward-guided learning paradigms in two fMRI studies to show that humans deploy separable learning mechanisms that operate in parallel. While behavior was dominated by precise contingent learning, it also revealed hallmarks of noncontingent learning strategies. These learning mechanisms were separable behaviorally and neurally. Lateral orbitofrontal cortex supported contingent learning and reflected contingencies between outcomes and their causal choices. Amygdala responses around reward times related to statistical patterns of learning. Time-based heuristic mechanisms were related to activity in sensorimotor corticostriatal circuitry. Our data point to the existence of several learning mechanisms in the human brain, of which only one relies on applying known rules about the causal structure of the task. PMID:26971947

  1. PPARalpha siRNA-treated expression profiles uncover the causal sufficiency network for compound-induced liver hypertrophy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xudong Dai

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Uncovering pathways underlying drug-induced toxicity is a fundamental objective in the field of toxicogenomics. Developing mechanism-based toxicity biomarkers requires the identification of such novel pathways and the order of their sufficiency in causing a phenotypic response. Genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi phenotypic screening has emerged as an effective tool in unveiling the genes essential for specific cellular functions and biological activities. However, eliciting the relative contribution of and sufficiency relationships among the genes identified remains challenging. In the rodent, the most widely used animal model in preclinical studies, it is unrealistic to exhaustively examine all potential interactions by RNAi screening. Application of existing computational approaches to infer regulatory networks with biological outcomes in the rodent is limited by the requirements for a large number of targeted permutations. Therefore, we developed a two-step relay method that requires only one targeted perturbation for genome-wide de novo pathway discovery. Using expression profiles in response to small interfering RNAs (siRNAs against the gene for peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha (Ppara, our method unveiled the potential causal sufficiency order network for liver hypertrophy in the rodent. The validity of the inferred 16 causal transcripts or 15 known genes for PPARalpha-induced liver hypertrophy is supported by their ability to predict non-PPARalpha-induced liver hypertrophy with 84% sensitivity and 76% specificity. Simulation shows that the probability of achieving such predictive accuracy without the inferred causal relationship is exceedingly small (p < 0.005. Five of the most sufficient causal genes have been previously disrupted in mouse models; the resulting phenotypic changes in the liver support the inferred causal roles in liver hypertrophy. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of defining pathways mediating drug

  2. Phosphoproteomics-based modeling defines the regulatory mechanism underlying aberrant EGFR signaling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shinya Tasaki

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Mutation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR results in a discordant cell signaling, leading to the development of various diseases. However, the mechanism underlying the alteration of downstream signaling due to such mutation has not yet been completely understood at the system level. Here, we report a phosphoproteomics-based methodology for characterizing the regulatory mechanism underlying aberrant EGFR signaling using computational network modeling. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Our phosphoproteomic analysis of the mutation at tyrosine 992 (Y992, one of the multifunctional docking sites of EGFR, revealed network-wide effects of the mutation on EGF signaling in a time-resolved manner. Computational modeling based on the temporal activation profiles enabled us to not only rediscover already-known protein interactions with Y992 and internalization property of mutated EGFR but also further gain model-driven insights into the effect of cellular content and the regulation of EGFR degradation. Our kinetic model also suggested critical reactions facilitating the reconstruction of the diverse effects of the mutation on phosphoproteome dynamics. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our integrative approach provided a mechanistic description of the disorders of mutated EGFR signaling networks, which could facilitate the development of a systematic strategy toward controlling disease-related cell signaling.

  3. Investigation of deterioration mechanism of electrical ceramic insulating materials under high temperature

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mizutani, Yoshinobu; Ito, Tetsuo; Okamoto, Tatsuki; Kumazawa, Ryoji; Aizawa, Rie; Moriyama, Hideshige

    2000-01-01

    It is thought that ceramic insulator can be applied to electric power equipments that are under high temperature not to be able use organic materials. Our research has suggested components of mica-alumina combined insulation. As the results of and carried out temperature accelerating test, combined insulation life is expected long term over 40 years at over 500-Celsius degrees. However to construct high reliable insulating system, it is clarified deterioration mechanism on combined insulation and evaluates life of that. Therefore we carried out metal behavior test and voltage aging test using mica-sheet and alumina-cloth that are components of combined insulation under high temperature in nitrogen gas atmosphere. It is cleared two metal behavior mechanisms: One is that the opening of insulator are filled up with copper that is oxidized, the other is the metal diffuses in alumina-cloth through surface. And distance of metal behavior is able to be estimated at modulate temperature and in modulate time. It is also cleared that alumina-cloth is deteriorated by metal behavior into alumina-cloth. These results indicate that combined insulation is deteriorated from electrode side by metal behavior and is finally broken down through alumina-cloth. (author)

  4. Mechanical Behavior of Red Sandstone under Incremental Uniaxial Cyclical Compressive and Tensile Loading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baoyun Zhao

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Uniaxial experiments were carried out on red sandstone specimens to investigate their short-term and creep mechanical behavior under incremental cyclic compressive and tensile loading. First, based on the results of short-term uniaxial incremental cyclic compressive and tensile loading experiments, deformation characteristics and energy dissipation were analyzed. The results show that the stress-strain curve of red sandstone has an obvious memory effect in the compressive and tensile loading stages. The strains at peak stresses and residual strains increase with the cycle number. Energy dissipation, defined as the area of the hysteresis loop in the stress-strain curves, increases nearly in a power function with the cycle number. Creep test of the red sandstone was also conducted. Results show that the creep curve under each compressive or tensile stress level can be divided into decay and steady stages, which cannot be described by the conventional Burgers model. Therefore, an improved Burgers creep model of rock material is constructed through viscoplastic mechanics, which agrees very well with the experimental results and can describe the creep behavior of red sandstone better than the Burgers creep model.

  5. Leakage current transport mechanism under reverse bias in Au/Ni/GaN Schottky barrier diode

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peta, Koteswara Rao; Kim, Moon Deock

    2018-01-01

    The leakage current transport mechanism under reverse bias of Au/Ni/GaN Schottky diode is studied using temperature dependent current-voltage (I-V-T) and capacitance-voltage (C-V) characteristics. I-V measurement in this study is in the range of 140 K-420 K in steps of 10 K. A reduction in voltage dependent barrier height and a strong internal electric field in depletion region under reverse bias suggested electric field enhanced thermionic emission in carrier transport via defect states in Au/Ni/GaN SBD. A detailed analysis of reverse leakage current revealed two different predominant transport mechanisms namely variable-range hopping (VRH) and Poole-Frenkel (PF) emission conduction at low (260 K) temperatures respectively. The estimated thermal activation energies (0.20-0.39 eV) from Arrhenius plot indicates a trap assisted tunneling of thermally activated electrons from a deep trap state into a continuum of states associated with each conductive threading dislocation.

  6. Mechanisms Underlying the Risk to Develop Drug Addiction, Insights From Studies in Drosophila melanogaster

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Ryvkin

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The ability to adapt to environmental changes is an essential feature of biological systems, achieved in animals by a coordinated crosstalk between neuronal and hormonal programs that allow rapid and integrated organismal responses. Reward systems play a key role in mediating this adaptation by reinforcing behaviors that enhance immediate survival, such as eating or drinking, or those that ensure long-term survival, such as sexual behavior or caring for offspring. Drugs of abuse co-opt neuronal and molecular pathways that mediate natural rewards, which under certain circumstances can lead to addiction. Many factors can contribute to the transition from drug use to drug addiction, highlighting the need to discover mechanisms underlying the progression from initial drug use to drug addiction. Since similar responses to natural and drug rewards are present in very different animals, it is likely that the central systems that process reward stimuli originated early in evolution, and that common ancient biological principles and genes are involved in these processes. Thus, the neurobiology of natural and drug rewards can be studied using simpler model organisms that have their systems stripped of some of the immense complexity that exists in mammalian brains. In this paper we review studies in Drosophila melanogaster that model different aspects of natural and drug rewards, with an emphasis on how motivational states shape the value of the rewarding experience, as an entry point to understanding the mechanisms that contribute to the vulnerability of drug addiction.

  7. Molecular mechanisms underlying cardiac antihypertrophic and antifibrotic effects of natriuretic peptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvieri, Camilla; Rubattu, Speranza; Volpe, Massimo

    2012-01-01

    Natriuretic peptides (NPs) exert well-characterized protective effects on the cardiovascular system, such as vasorelaxation, natri- and diuresis, increase of endothelial permeability, and inhibition of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system. It has been reported that they also possess antihypertrophic and antifibrotic properties and contribute actively to cardiac remodeling. As a consequence, they are involved in several aspects of cardiovascular diseases. Antihypertrophic and antifibrotic actions of NPs appear to be mediated by specific signaling pathways within a more complex cellular network. Elucidation of the molecular mechanisms underlying the effects of NPs on cardiac remodeling represents an important research objective in order to gain more insights on the complex network leading to cardiac hypertrophy, ventricular dysfunction, and transition to heart failure, and in the attempt to develop novel therapeutic agents. The aim of the present article is to review well-characterized molecular mechanisms underlying the antihypertrophic and antifibrotic effects of NPs in the heart that appear to be mainly mediated by guanylyl cyclase type A receptor. In particular, we discuss the calcineurin/NFAT, the sodium exchanger NHE-1, and the TGFβ1/Smad signaling pathways. The role of guanylyl cyclase type B receptor, along with the emerging functional significance of natriuretic peptide receptor type C as mediators of CNP antihypertrophic and antifibrotic actions in the heart are also considered.

  8. Mechanisms of action underlying the anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects of propolis: a brief review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcio A. R. Araujo

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Many biological properties have been attributed to various types of propolis, including anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antitumor, wound healing, and immunomodulatory activities. This article reviewed studies published that investigated the anti-inflammatory activity of propolis of different origins and/or its isolated components, focusing on the mechanisms of action underlying this activity and also addressing some aspects of immunomodulatory effects. The search was performed of the following databases: PubMed, Science Direct, HighWire Press, Scielo, Google Academics, Research Gate and ISI Web of Knowledgement. The anti-inflammatory activity was associated with propolis or compounds such as polyphenols (flavonoids, phenolic acids and their esters, terpenoids, steroids and amino acids. CAPE is the most studied compounds. The main mechanisms underlying the anti-inflammatory activity of propolis included the inhibition of cyclooxygenase and consequent inhibition of prostaglandin biosynthesis, free radical scavenging, inhibition of nitric oxide synthesis, reduction in the concentration of inflammatory cytokines and immunosuppressive activity. Propolis was found to exert an anti-inflammatory activity in vivo and in vitro models of acute and chronic inflammation and others studies, indicating its promising potential as anti-inflammatory agent of natural origin and as a source of chemical compounds for the development of new drugs.

  9. Mechanical modeling of creep, swelling and damage under irradiation for polycrystalline metals

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murakami, S.; Mizuno, M.; Okamoto, T.

    1991-01-01

    A constitutive equation of creep, swelling and damage under irradiation for polycrystalline metals applicable to structural analyses in multiaxial state of stress is developed. After reviewing microscopic mechanisms of irradiation creep and swelling, the relevant theories proposed so far from the view point of metallurgical physics and their applicability are discussed first. Then a constitutive model is developed by assuming that creep under irradiation can be decomposed into irradiation-affected thermal creep and irradiation-induced creep. By taking account of the Stress-Induced Preferential Absorption (SIPA) mechanism, the irradiation-induced creep is represented by an isotropic tensor function of order one and zero with respect to stress, which is, at the same time, the function of neutron flux and neutron fluence. The volumetric part of the irradiation-induced creep is identified with swelling. The irradiation-affected thermal creep is described by modifying Kachanov-Rabotnov theory for stress-controlled creep and creep damage by incorporating the effect of irradiation. Finally irradiation creep and swelling of 20% cold-worked type 316 stainless steel at elevated temperature are predicted by the proposed constitutive equations, and the numerical results are compared with the corresponding experimental results. (orig.)

  10. Mechanical damage in a lithium-ion pouch cell under indentation loads

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Hailing; Xia, Yong; Zhou, Qing

    2017-07-01

    The short circuit of lithium-ion batteries induced by mechanical abuse is a great concern in electric vehicle design. It remains a challenge to fully understand the nature of the mechanical damage process with the aim of improving battery crash safety. The present paper investigates the evolution of the damage process for a lithium-ion pouch cell under indentation by loading the cell to various force levels. A significant inflection point on the force-indentation curve is observed before the force peak. Post-mortem examinations indicate that the characteristic change in the local slope of the curve is related to the change occurring at the local interfaces, including three phenomena - formation of tight adhesion on the anode-separator interfaces, delamination in the separators and decoating of graphite particles from the anodes. Analysis of the fracture sequence at the onset of short circuit clearly shows that the number of short-circuited electrode pairs is equal to the number of anode layers adhered with delaminated separator material before fracture occurs. The experimental study in the present paper implies that the inflection point on the force-indentation curve may be an indicator of damage initiation inside pouch cells under indentation.

  11. Mechanisms of action underlying the anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects of propolis: a brief review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcio A. R. Araujo

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Many biological properties have been attributed to various types of propolis, including anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antitumor, wound healing, and immunomodulatory activities. This article reviewed studies published that investigated the anti-inflammatory activity of propolis of different origins and/or its isolated components, focusing on the mechanisms of action underlying this activity and also addressing some aspects of immunomodulatory effects. The search was performed of the following databases: PubMed, Science Direct, HighWire Press, Scielo, Google Academics, Research Gate and ISI Web of Knowledgement. The anti-inflammatory activity was associated with propolis or compounds such as polyphenols (flavonoids, phenolic acids and their esters, terpenoids, steroids and amino acids. CAPE is the most studied compounds. The main mechanisms underlying the anti-inflammatory activity of propolis included the inhibition of cyclooxygenase and consequent inhibition of prostaglandin biosynthesis, free radical scavenging, inhibition of nitric oxide synthesis, reduction in the concentration of inflammatory cytokines and immunosuppressive activity. Propolis was found to exert an anti-inflammatory activity in vivo and in vitro models of acute and chronic inflammation and others studies, indicating its promising potential as anti-inflammatory agent of natural origin and as a source of chemical compounds for the development of new drugs.

  12. Identifying Causality from Alarm Observations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirchhübel, Denis; Zhang, Xinxin; Lind, Morten

    on an abstracted model of the mass and energy flows in the system. The application of MFM for root cause analysis based alarm grouping has been demonstrated and can be extended to reason about the direction of causality considering the entirety of the alarms present in the system for more comprehensive decision...... support. This contribution presents the foundation for combining the cause and consequence propagation of multiple observations from the system based on an MFM model. The proposed logical reasoning matches actually observed alarms to the propagation analysis in MFM to distinguish plausible causes...

  13. Random number generators and causality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Larrondo, H.A.; Martin, M.T.; Gonzalez, C.M.; Plastino, A.; Rosso, O.A.

    2006-01-01

    We advance a prescription to randomize physical or algorithmic Random Number Generators (RNG's) that do not pass Marsaglia's DIEHARD test suite and discuss a special physical quantifier, based on an intensive statistical complexity measure, that is able to adequately assess the improvements produced thereby. Eight RNG's are evaluated and the associated results are compared to those obtained by recourse to Marsaglia's DIEHARD test suite. Our quantifier, which is evaluated using causality arguments, can forecast whether a given RNG will pass the above mentioned test

  14. Neural mechanisms underlying transcranial direct current stimulation in aphasia: A feasibility study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lena eUlm

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Little is known about the neural mechanisms by which transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS impacts on language processing in post-stroke aphasia. This was addressed in a proof-of-principle study that explored the effects of tDCS application in aphasia during simultaneous functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. We employed a single subject, cross-over, sham-tDCS controlled design and the stimulation was administered to an individualized perilesional stimulation site that was identified by a baseline fMRI scan and a picture naming task. Peak activity during the baseline scan was located in the spared left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG and this area was stimulated during a subsequent cross-over phase. tDCS was successfully administered to the target region and anodal- vs. sham-tDCS resulted in selectively increased activity at the stimulation site. Our results thus demonstrate that it is feasible to precisely target an individualized stimulation site in aphasia patients during simultaneous fMRI which allows assessing the neural mechanisms underlying tDCS application. The functional imaging results of this case report highlight one possible mechanism that may have contributed to beneficial behavioural stimulation effects in previous clinical tDCS trials in aphasia. In the future, this approach will allow identifying distinct patterns of stimulation effects on neural processing in larger cohorts of patients. This may ultimately yield information about the variability of tDCS-effects on brain functions in aphasia.

  15. Mechanical behavior and modelisation of Ti-6Al-4V titanium sheet under hot stamping conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sirvin, Q.; Velay, V.; Bonnaire, R.; Penazzi, L.

    2017-10-01

    The Ti-6Al-4V titanium alloy is widely used for the manufacture of aeronautical and automotive parts (solid parts). In aeronautics, this alloy is employed for its excellent mechanical behavior associated with low density, outstanding corrosion resistance and good mechanical properties up to 600°C. It is especially used for the manufacture of fuselage frames, on the pylon for carrying out the primary structure (machining forged blocks) and the secondary structure in sheet form. In this last case, the sheet metal forming can be done through various methods: at room temperature by drawing operation, at very high temperature (≃900°C) by superplastic forming (SPF) and at intermediate temperature (≥750°C) by hot forming (HF). In order to reduce production costs and environmental troubles, the cycle times reduction associated with a decrease of temperature levels are relevant. This study focuses on the behavior modelling of Ti-6Al-4V alloy at temperatures above room temperature to obtained greater formability and below SPF condition to reduce tools workshop and energy costs. The displacement field measurement obtained by Digital Image Correlation (DIC) is based on innovative surface preparation pattern adapted to high temperature exposures. Different material parameters are identified to define a model able to predict the mechanical behavior of Ti-6Al-4V alloy under hot stamping conditions. The hardening plastic model identified is introduced in FEM to simulate an omega shape forming operation.

  16. Mitochondrial Ca2+ overload underlies Abeta oligomers neurotoxicity providing an unexpected mechanism of neuroprotection by NSAIDs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Sanz-Blasco

    Full Text Available Dysregulation of intracellular Ca(2+ homeostasis may underlie amyloid beta peptide (Abeta toxicity in Alzheimer's Disease (AD but the mechanism is unknown. In search for this mechanism we found that Abeta(1-42 oligomers, the assembly state correlating best with cognitive decline in AD, but not Abeta fibrils, induce a massive entry of Ca(2+ in neurons and promote mitochondrial Ca(2+ overload as shown by bioluminescence imaging of targeted aequorin in individual neurons. Abeta oligomers induce also mitochondrial permeability transition, cytochrome c release, apoptosis and cell death. Mitochondrial depolarization prevents mitochondrial Ca(2+ overload, cytochrome c release and cell death. In addition, we found that a series of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs including salicylate, sulindac sulfide, indomethacin, ibuprofen and R-flurbiprofen depolarize mitochondria and inhibit mitochondrial Ca(2+ overload, cytochrome c release and cell death induced by Abeta oligomers. Our results indicate that i mitochondrial Ca(2+ overload underlies the neurotoxicity induced by Abeta oligomers and ii inhibition of mitochondrial Ca(2+ overload provides a novel mechanism of neuroprotection by NSAIDs against Abeta oligomers and AD.

  17. Change of plans: an evaluation of the effectiveness and underlying mechanisms of successful talent transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Rosie; Collins, Dave; MacNamara, Aine; Jones, Martin Ian

    2014-01-01

    Talent transfer (TT) is a recently formalised process used to identify and develop talented athletes by selecting individuals who have already succeeded in one sport and transferring them to another. Despite the increasing popularity of TT amongst national organisations and sport governing body professionals, however, there is little empirical evidence as to its efficacy or how it may be most efficiently employed. Accordingly, this investigation was designed to gain a deeper understanding of the effectiveness and underlying mechanisms of TT, achieved through a two-part study. Stage 1 provided a quantitative analysis of the incidence and distribution or, in this respect, epidemiology of TT, finding the most popular transfer to be sprinting to bobsleigh, with an average transfer age of 19 years. Stage 2 scrutinised the TT process and explored the specific cases revealed in stage 1 by examining the perceptions of four sport science support specialists who had worked in TT settings, finding several emergent themes which, they felt, could explain the TT processes. The most prominent theme was the psychosocial mechanism of TT, an aspect currently missing from TT initiatives, suggesting that current TT systems are poorly structured and should redress their approach to develop a more integrated scheme that encompasses all potential mechanisms of transfer.

  18. Herb pair Danggui-Honghua: mechanisms underlying blood stasis syndrome by system pharmacology approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yue, Shi-Jun; Xin, Lan-Ting; Fan, Ya-Chu; Li, Shu-Jiao; Tang, Yu-Ping; Duan, Jin-Ao; Guan, Hua-Shi; Wang, Chang-Yun

    2017-01-01

    Herb pair Danggui-Honghua has been frequently used for treatment of blood stasis syndrome (BSS) in China, one of the most common clinical pathological syndromes in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). However, its therapeutic mechanism has not been clearly elucidated. In the present study, a feasible system pharmacology model based on chemical, pharmacokinetic and pharmacological data was developed via network construction approach to clarify the mechanisms of this herb pair. Thirty-one active ingredients of Danggui-Honghua possessing favorable pharmacokinetic profiles and biological activities were selected, interacting with 42 BSS-related targets to provide potential synergistic therapeutic actions. Systematic analysis of the constructed networks revealed that these targets such as HMOX1, NOS2, NOS3, HIF1A and PTGS2 were mainly involved in TNF signaling pathway, HIF-1 signaling pathway, estrogen signaling pathway and neurotrophin signaling pathway. The contribution index of every active ingredient also indicated six compounds, including hydroxysafflor yellow A, safflor yellow A, safflor yellow B, Z-ligustilide, ferulic acid, and Z-butylidenephthalide, as the principal components of this herb pair. These results successfully explained the polypharmcological mechanisms underlying the efficiency of Danggui-Honghua for BSS treatment, and also probed into the potential novel therapeutic strategies for BSS in TCM.

  19. Nuclear power for greenhouse gas mitigation under the Kyoto protocol: The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rogner, H.-H.

    2000-01-01

    At the 43rd regular session of the IAEA General Conference, Member States requested the IAEA to help countries in assessing nuclear power's role in light of global environmental challenges and energy needs. Such assistance should include support for implementing national case studies, and facilitating access to relevant information about nuclear power's role in achieving sustainable development in developing countries and in mitigating GHG emissions. The dissemination of information on CDM is of particular importance to developing countries, so as to enable Member States interested in the mechanism to take an active and informed role in the debate regarding the Kyoto Protocol and eligible CDM technologies. Therefore, the Secretariat organized a series of information seminars, workshops and training courses for Member States on the Kyoto Protocol, the Clean Development Mechanism, Joint Implementation and Emissions Trading with particular emphasis on the potential role of nuclear power for GHG mitigation. On request, the Secretariat also provided training and assistance to several Member States in the preparation of national case studies that explore the potential role of nuclear power as a CDM technology. These case studies will be presented by the respective national study teams during this side event at the 44th IAEA General Conference. Within the general criteria included in the Kyoto Protocol, the decision on which technologies are eligible for GHG mitigation under the flexibility mechanisms is a sovereign decision of each country

  20. Revealing the Neural Mechanisms Underlying the Beneficial Effects of Tai Chi: A Neuroimaging Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Angus P; Tam, Bjorn T; Lai, Christopher W; Yu, Doris S; Woo, Jean; Chung, Ka-Fai; Hui, Stanley S; Liu, Justina Y; Wei, Gao X; Siu, Parco M

    2018-01-01

    Tai Chi Chuan (TCC), a traditional Chinese martial art, is well-documented to result in beneficial consequences in physical and mental health. TCC is regarded as a mind-body exercise that is comprised of physical exercise and meditation. Favorable effects of TCC on body balance, gait, bone mineral density, metabolic parameters, anxiety, depression, cognitive function, and sleep have been previously reported. However, the underlying mechanisms explaining the effects of TCC remain largely unclear. Recently, advances in neuroimaging technology have offered new investigative opportunities to reveal the effects of TCC on anatomical morphologies and neurological activities in different regions of the brain. These neuroimaging findings have provided new clues for revealing the mechanisms behind the observed effects of TCC. In this review paper, we discussed the possible effects of TCC-induced modulation of brain morphology, functional homogeneity and connectivity, regional activity and macro-scale network activity on health. Moreover, we identified possible links between the alterations in brain and beneficial effects of TCC, such as improved motor functions, pain perception, metabolic profile, cognitive functions, mental health and sleep quality. This paper aimed to stimulate further mechanistic neuroimaging studies in TCC and its effects on brain morphology, functional homogeneity and connectivity, regional activity and macro-scale network activity, which ultimately lead to a better understanding of the mechanisms responsible for the beneficial effects of TCC on human health.