WorldWideScience

Sample records for underlying learning mechanisms

  1. 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.

  2. Neural mechanisms underlying probalistic category learning in normal aging.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fera, F.; Weickert, T.W.; Goldberg, T.E.; Tessitore, A.; Hariri, A.; Das, S.; Lee, S.; Zoltick, B.; Meeter, M.; Gluck, M.A.; Weinberger, D.A.; Matta, V.S.

    2005-01-01

    Probabilistic category learning engages neural circuitry that includes the prefrontal cortex and caudate nucleus, two regions that show prominent changes with normal aging. However, the specific contributions of these brain regions are uncertain, and the effects of normal aging have not been

  3. 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.

  4. Improvement of Learning and Memory Induced by Cordyceps Polypeptide Treatment and the Underlying Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guangxin Yuan

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Our previous research revealed that Cordyceps militaris can improve the learning and memory, and although the main active ingredient should be its polypeptide complexes, the underlying mechanism of its activity remains poorly understood. In this study, we explored the mechanisms by which Cordyceps militaris improves learning and memory in a mouse model. Mice were given scopolamine hydrobromide intraperitoneally to establish a mouse model of learning and memory impairment. The effects of Cordyceps polypeptide in this model were tested using the Morris water maze test; serum superoxide dismutase activity; serum malondialdehyde levels; activities of acetyl cholinesterase, Na+-k+-ATPase, and nitric oxide synthase; and gamma aminobutyric acid and glutamate contents in brain tissue. Moreover, differentially expressed genes and the related cellular signaling pathways were screened using an mRNA expression profile chip. The results showed that the genes Pik3r5, Il-1β, and Slc18a2 were involved in the effects of Cordyceps polypeptide on the nervous system of these mice. Our findings suggest that Cordyceps polypeptide may improve learning and memory in the scopolamine-induced mouse model of learning and memory impairment by scavenging oxygen free radicals, preventing oxidative damage, and protecting the nervous system.

  5. Neural oscillatory mechanisms during novel grammar learning underlying language analytical abilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kepinska, Olga; Pereda, Ernesto; Caspers, Johanneke; Schiller, Niels O

    2017-12-01

    The goal of the present study was to investigate the initial phases of novel grammar learning on a neural level, concentrating on mechanisms responsible for individual variability between learners. Two groups of participants, one with high and one with average language analytical abilities, performed an Artificial Grammar Learning (AGL) task consisting of learning and test phases. During the task, EEG signals from 32 cap-mounted electrodes were recorded and epochs corresponding to the learning phases were analysed. We investigated spectral power modulations over time, and functional connectivity patterns by means of a bivariate, frequency-specific index of phase synchronization termed Phase Locking Value (PLV). Behavioural data showed learning effects in both groups, with a steeper learning curve and higher ultimate attainment for the highly skilled learners. Moreover, we established that cortical connectivity patterns and profiles of spectral power modulations over time differentiated L2 learners with various levels of language analytical abilities. Over the course of the task, the learning process seemed to be driven by whole-brain functional connectivity between neuronal assemblies achieved by means of communication in the beta band frequency. On a shorter time-scale, increasing proficiency on the AGL task appeared to be supported by stronger local synchronisation within the right hemisphere regions. Finally, we observed that the highly skilled learners might have exerted less mental effort, or reduced attention for the task at hand once the learning was achieved, as evidenced by the higher alpha band power. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Neurocognitive mechanisms underlying social learning in infancy: infants' neural processing of the effects of others' actions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paulus, Markus; Hunnius, Sabine; Bekkering, Harold

    2013-10-01

    Social transmission of knowledge is one of the reasons for human evolutionary success, and it has been suggested that already human infants possess eminent social learning abilities. However, nothing is known about the neurocognitive mechanisms that subserve infants' acquisition of novel action knowledge through the observation of other people's actions and their consequences in the physical world. In an electroencephalogram study on social learning in infancy, we demonstrate that 9-month-old infants represent the environmental effects of others' actions in their own motor system, although they never achieved these effects themselves before. The results provide first insights into the neurocognitive basis of human infants' unique ability for social learning of novel action knowledge.

  7. Cognitive neuroepigenetics: the next evolution in our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying learning and memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Paul; Bredy, Timothy W.

    2016-07-01

    A complete understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of learning and memory continues to elude neuroscientists. Although many important discoveries have been made, the question of how memories are encoded and maintained at the molecular level remains. So far, this issue has been framed within the context of one of the most dominant concepts in molecular biology, the central dogma, and the result has been a protein-centric view of memory. Here, we discuss the evidence supporting a role for neuroepigenetic mechanisms, which constitute dynamic and reversible, state-dependent modifications at all levels of control over cellular function, and their role in learning and memory. This neuroepigenetic view suggests that DNA, RNA and protein each influence one another to produce a holistic cellular state that contributes to the formation and maintenance of memory, and predicts a parallel and distributed system for the consolidation, storage and retrieval of the engram.

  8. 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.

  9. Computations Underlying Social Hierarchy Learning: Distinct Neural Mechanisms for Updating and Representing Self-Relevant Information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumaran, Dharshan; Banino, Andrea; Blundell, Charles; Hassabis, Demis; Dayan, Peter

    2016-12-07

    Knowledge about social hierarchies organizes human behavior, yet we understand little about the underlying computations. Here we show that a Bayesian inference scheme, which tracks the power of individuals, better captures behavioral and neural data compared with a reinforcement learning model inspired by rating systems used in games such as chess. We provide evidence that the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) selectively mediates the updating of knowledge about one's own hierarchy, as opposed to that of another individual, a process that underpinned successful performance and involved functional interactions with the amygdala and hippocampus. In contrast, we observed domain-general coding of rank in the amygdala and hippocampus, even when the task did not require it. Our findings reveal the computations underlying a core aspect of social cognition and provide new evidence that self-relevant information may indeed be afforded a unique representational status in the brain. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. 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 ...

  11. Language Learning Enhanced by Massive Multiple Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) and the Underlying Behavioral and Neural Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yongjun; Song, Hongwen; Liu, Xiaoming; Tang, Dinghong; Chen, Yue-E; Zhang, Xiaochu

    2017-01-01

    Massive Multiple Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) have increased in popularity among children, juveniles, and adults since MMORPGs' appearance in this digital age. MMORPGs can be applied to enhancing language learning, which is drawing researchers' attention from different fields and many studies have validated MMORPGs' positive effect on language learning. However, there are few studies on the underlying behavioral or neural mechanism of such effect. This paper reviews the educational application of the MMORPGs based on relevant macroscopic and microscopic studies, showing that gamers' overall language proficiency or some specific language skills can be enhanced by real-time online interaction with peers and game narratives or instructions embedded in the MMORPGs. Mechanisms underlying the educational assistant role of MMORPGs in second language learning are discussed from both behavioral and neural perspectives. We suggest that attentional bias makes gamers/learners allocate more cognitive resources toward task-related stimuli in a controlled or an automatic way. Moreover, with a moderating role played by activation of reward circuit, playing the MMORPGs may strengthen or increase functional connectivity from seed regions such as left anterior insular/frontal operculum (AI/FO) and visual word form area to other language-related brain areas.

  12. Language Learning Enhanced by Massive Multiple Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) and the Underlying Behavioral and Neural Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yongjun; Song, Hongwen; Liu, Xiaoming; Tang, Dinghong; Chen, Yue-e; Zhang, Xiaochu

    2017-01-01

    Massive Multiple Online Role-Playing Games (MMORPGs) have increased in popularity among children, juveniles, and adults since MMORPGs’ appearance in this digital age. MMORPGs can be applied to enhancing language learning, which is drawing researchers’ attention from different fields and many studies have validated MMORPGs’ positive effect on language learning. However, there are few studies on the underlying behavioral or neural mechanism of such effect. This paper reviews the educational application of the MMORPGs based on relevant macroscopic and microscopic studies, showing that gamers’ overall language proficiency or some specific language skills can be enhanced by real-time online interaction with peers and game narratives or instructions embedded in the MMORPGs. Mechanisms underlying the educational assistant role of MMORPGs in second language learning are discussed from both behavioral and neural perspectives. We suggest that attentional bias makes gamers/learners allocate more cognitive resources toward task-related stimuli in a controlled or an automatic way. Moreover, with a moderating role played by activation of reward circuit, playing the MMORPGs may strengthen or increase functional connectivity from seed regions such as left anterior insular/frontal operculum (AI/FO) and visual word form area to other language-related brain areas. PMID:28303097

  13. Naringenin improves learning and memory in an Alzheimer's disease rat model: Insights into the underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghofrani, Saeed; Joghataei, Mohammad-Taghi; Mohseni, Simin; Baluchnejadmojarad, Tourandokht; Bagheri, Maryam; Khamse, Safoura; Roghani, Mehrdad

    2015-10-05

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is one of the prevalent neurological disorders of the central nervous system hallmarked by increased beta-amyloid (Aβ) deposition and ensuing learning and memory deficit. In the present study, the beneficial effect of naringenin on improvement of learning and memory was evaluated in an Alzheimer's disease rat model. The Aβ-injected rats showed a lower alternation score in Y-maze task, impairment of retention and recall capability in passive avoidance test, and lower correct choices and higher errors in radial arm maze (RAM) task as compared to sham group in addition to enhanced oxidative stress and apoptosis. Naringenin, but not a combination of naringenin and fulvestrant (an estrogenic receptor antagonist) significantly improved the performance of Aβ-injected rats in passive avoidance and RAM tasks. Naringenin pretreatment of Aβ-injected rats also lowered hippocampal malondialdehyde (MDA) with no significant effect on nitrite and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity in addition to lowering apoptosis. These results suggest naringenin pretreatment attenuates Aβ-induced impairment of learning and memory through mitigation of lipid peroxidation and apoptosis and its beneficial effect is somewhat mediated via estrogenic pathway. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Mechanisms underlying vestibulo‐cerebellar motor learning in mice depend on movement direction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voges, Kai; Wu, Bin; Post, Laura

    2017-01-01

    Key points Directionality, inherent to movements, has behavioural and neuronal correlates.Direction of vestibular stimulation determines motor learning efficiency.Vestibulo‐ocular reflex gain–increase correlates with Purkinje cell simple spike potentiation.The locus of neural correlates for vestibulo‐ocular reflex adaptation is paradigm specific. Abstract Compensatory eye movements elicited by head rotation, also known as vestibulo‐ocular reflex (VOR), can be adapted with the use of visual feedback. The cerebellum is essential for this type of movement adaptation, although its neuronal correlates remain to be clarified. In the present study, we show that the direction of vestibular input determines the magnitude of eye movement adaptation induced by mismatched visual input in mice, with larger changes during contraversive head rotation. Moreover, the location of the neural correlate of this changed behaviour depends on the type of paradigm. Gain–increase paradigms induce increased simple spike (SS) activity in ipsilateral cerebellar Purkinje cells (PC), which is in line with eye movements triggered by optogenetic PC activation. By contrast, gain–decrease paradigms do not induce changes in SS activity, indicating that the murine vestibulo‐cerebellar cortical circuitry is optimally designed to enhance ipsiversive eye movements. PMID:28586131

  15. Mechanisms underlying accent accommodation in early word learning: evidence for general expansion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmale, Rachel; Seidl, Amanda; Cristia, Alejandrina

    2015-07-01

    Previous work reveals that toddlers can accommodate a novel accent after hearing it for only a brief period of time. A common assumption is that children, like adults, cope with nonstandard pronunciations by relying on words they know (e.g. 'this person pronounces sock as sack, therefore by black she meant block'). In this paper, we assess whether toddlers might additionally use a general expansion strategy, whereby they simply accept non-standard pronunciations when variability is expected. We exposed a group of 24-month-old English-learning toddlers to variability in indexical cues (very diverse voices from native English talkers), and another to variability in social cues (very diverse-looking silent actors); neither group was familiarized with the target novel accent. At test, both groups succeeded in recognizing a novel word when spoken in the novel accent. Thus, even when no lexical cues are available, variability can prepare young children for non-standard pronunciations. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. 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...

  17. Statistical mechanics of learning

    CERN Document Server

    Engel, Andreas

    2001-01-01

    The effort to build machines that are able to learn and undertake tasks such as datamining, image processing and pattern recognition has led to the development of artificial neural networks in which learning from examples may be described and understood. The contribution to this subject made over the past decade by researchers applying the techniques of statistical mechanics is the subject of this book. The authors provide a coherent account of various important concepts and techniques that are currently only found scattered in papers, supplement this with background material in mathematics and physics, and include many examples and exercises.

  18. Learning mechanisms to limit medication administration errors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drach-Zahavy, Anat; Pud, Dorit

    2010-04-01

    This paper is a report of a study conducted to identify and test the effectiveness of learning mechanisms applied by the nursing staff of hospital wards as a means of limiting medication administration errors. Since the influential report ;To Err Is Human', research has emphasized the role of team learning in reducing medication administration errors. Nevertheless, little is known about the mechanisms underlying team learning. Thirty-two hospital wards were randomly recruited. Data were collected during 2006 in Israel by a multi-method (observations, interviews and administrative data), multi-source (head nurses, bedside nurses) approach. Medication administration error was defined as any deviation from procedures, policies and/or best practices for medication administration, and was identified using semi-structured observations of nurses administering medication. Organizational learning was measured using semi-structured interviews with head nurses, and the previous year's reported medication administration errors were assessed using administrative data. The interview data revealed four learning mechanism patterns employed in an attempt to learn from medication administration errors: integrated, non-integrated, supervisory and patchy learning. Regression analysis results demonstrated that whereas the integrated pattern of learning mechanisms was associated with decreased errors, the non-integrated pattern was associated with increased errors. Supervisory and patchy learning mechanisms were not associated with errors. Superior learning mechanisms are those that represent the whole cycle of team learning, are enacted by nurses who administer medications to patients, and emphasize a system approach to data analysis instead of analysis of individual cases.

  19. Ellagic acid ameliorates learning and memory deficits in a rat model of Alzheimer's disease: an exploration of underlying mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiasalari, Zahra; Heydarifard, Rana; Khalili, Mohsen; Afshin-Majd, Siamak; Baluchnejadmojarad, Tourandokht; Zahedi, Elham; Sanaierad, Ashkan; Roghani, Mehrdad

    2017-06-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder with irreversible loss of intellectual abilities. Current therapies for AD are still insufficient. In this study, the effect of ellagic acid on learning and memory deficits was evaluated in intrahippocampal amyloid beta (Aβ 25-35 )-microinjected rats and its modes of action were also explored. AD rat model was induced by bilateral intrahippocampal microinjection of Aβ 25-35 and ellagic acid was daily administered (10, 50, and 100 mg/kg), and learning, recognition memory, and spatial memory were evaluated in addition to histochemical assessment, oxidative stress, cholinesterases activity, and level of nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-κB), Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), and nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2). The amyloid beta-microinjected rats showed a lower discrimination ratio in novel object and alternation score in Y maze tasks and exhibited an impairment of retention and recall capability in passive avoidance paradigm and higher working and reference memory errors in radial arm maze (RAM). In addition, amyloid beta group showed a lower number of Nissl-stained neurons in CA1 area in addition to enhanced oxidative stress, higher activity of cholinesterases, greater level of NF-κB and TLR4, and lower level of nuclear/cytoplasmic ratio for Nrf2 and ellagic acid at a dose of 100 mg/kg significantly prevented most of these abnormal alterations. Ellagic acid pretreatment of intrahippocampal amyloid beta-microinjected rats could dose-dependently improve learning and memory deficits via neuronal protection and at molecular level through mitigation of oxidative stress and acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity and modulation of NF-κB/Nrf2/TLR4 signaling pathway.

  20. 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 ...

  1. 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.

  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. Automotive Mechanics. Student Learning Guides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ridge Vocational-Technical Center, Winter Haven, FL.

    These 33 learning guides are self-instructional packets for 33 tasks identified as essential for performance on an entry-level job in automotive mechanics. Each guide is based on a terminal performance objective (task) and 1-9 enabling objectives. For each enabliing objective, some or all of these materials may be presented: learning steps…

  4. Astrocytic water channel aquaporin-4 modulates brain plasticity in both mice and humans: a potential gliogenetic mechanism underlying language-associated learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woo, J; Kim, J E; Im, J J; Lee, J; Jeong, H S; Park, S; Jung, S-Y; An, H; Yoon, S; Lim, S M; Lee, S; Ma, J; Shin, E Y; Han, Y-E; Kim, B; Lee, E H; Feng, L; Chun, H; Yoon, B-E; Kang, I; Dager, S R; Lyoo, I K; Lee, C J

    2018-04-01

    The role of astrocytes in brain plasticity has not been extensively studied compared with that of neurons. Here we adopted integrative translational and reverse-translational approaches to explore the role of an astrocyte-specific major water channel in the brain, aquaporin-4 (AQP4), in brain plasticity and learning. We initially identified the most prevalent genetic variant of AQP4 (single nucleotide polymorphism of rs162008 with C or T variation, which has a minor allele frequency of 0.21) from a human database (n=60 706) and examined its functionality in modulating the expression level of AQP4 in an in vitro luciferase reporter assay. In the following experiments, AQP4 knock-down in mice not only impaired hippocampal volumetric plasticity after exposure to enriched environment but also caused loss of long-term potentiation after theta-burst stimulation. In humans, there was a cross-sectional association of rs162008 with gray matter (GM) volume variation in cortices, including the vicinity of the Perisylvian heteromodal language area (Sample 1, n=650). GM volume variation in these brain regions was positively associated with the semantic verbal fluency. In a prospective follow-up study (Sample 2, n=45), the effects of an intensive 5-week foreign language (English) learning experience on regional GM volume increase were modulated by this AQP4 variant, which was also associated with verbal learning capacity change. We then delineated in mice mechanisms that included AQP4-dependent transient astrocytic volume changes and astrocytic structural elaboration. We believe our study provides the first integrative evidence for a gliogenetic basis that involves AQP4, underlying language-associated brain plasticity.

  5. Statistical mechanics of dictionary learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakata, Ayaka; Kabashima, Yoshiyuki

    2013-07-01

    Finding a basis matrix (dictionary) by which objective signals are represented sparsely is of major relevance in various scientific and technological fields. We consider a problem to learn a dictionary from a set of training signals. We employ techniques of statistical mechanics of disordered systems to evaluate the size of the training set necessary to typically succeed in the dictionary learning. The results indicate that the necessary size is much smaller than previously estimated, which theoretically supports and/or encourages the use of dictionary learning in practical situations.

  6. Sensorimotor Learning: Neurocognitive Mechanisms and Individual Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seidler, R D; Carson, R G

    2017-07-13

    Here we provide an overview of findings and viewpoints on the mechanisms of sensorimotor learning presented at the 2016 Biomechanics and Neural Control of Movement (BANCOM) conference in Deer Creek, OH. This field has shown substantial growth in the past couple of decades. For example it is now well accepted that neural systems outside of primary motor pathways play a role in learning. Frontoparietal and anterior cingulate networks contribute to sensorimotor adaptation, reflecting strategic aspects of exploration and learning. Longer term training results in functional and morphological changes in primary motor and somatosensory cortices. Interestingly, re-engagement of strategic processes once a skill has become well learned may disrupt performance. Efforts to predict individual differences in learning rate have enhanced our understanding of the neural, behavioral, and genetic factors underlying skilled human performance. Access to genomic analyses has dramatically increased over the past several years. This has enhanced our understanding of cellular processes underlying the expression of human behavior, including involvement of various neurotransmitters, receptors, and enzymes. Surprisingly our field has been slow to adopt such approaches in studying neural control, although this work does require much larger sample sizes than are typically used to investigate skill learning. We advocate that individual differences approaches can lead to new insights into human sensorimotor performance. Moreover, a greater understanding of the factors underlying the wide range of performance capabilities seen across individuals can promote personalized medicine and refinement of rehabilitation strategies, which stand to be more effective than "one size fits all" treatments.

  7. Neural Population Dynamics Underlying Motor Learning Transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vyas, Saurabh; Even-Chen, Nir; Stavisky, Sergey D; Ryu, Stephen I; Nuyujukian, Paul; Shenoy, Krishna V

    2018-03-07

    Covert motor learning can sometimes transfer to overt behavior. We investigated the neural mechanism underlying transfer by constructing a two-context paradigm. Subjects performed cursor movements either overtly using arm movements, or covertly via a brain-machine interface that moves the cursor based on motor cortical activity (in lieu of arm movement). These tasks helped evaluate whether and how cortical changes resulting from "covert rehearsal" affect overt performance. We found that covert learning indeed transfers to overt performance and is accompanied by systematic population-level changes in motor preparatory activity. Current models of motor cortical function ascribe motor preparation to achieving initial conditions favorable for subsequent movement-period neural dynamics. We found that covert and overt contexts share these initial conditions, and covert rehearsal manipulates them in a manner that persists across context changes, thus facilitating overt motor learning. This transfer learning mechanism might provide new insights into other covert processes like mental rehearsal. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Neural Mechanisms of Extinction Learning and Retrieval

    OpenAIRE

    Quirk, Gregory J.; Mueller, Devin

    2007-01-01

    Emotional learning is necessary for individuals to survive and prosper. Once acquired, however, emotional associations are not always expressed. Indeed, the regulation of emotional expression under varying environmental conditions is essential for mental health. The simplest form of emotional regulation is extinction, in which conditioned responding to a stimulus decreases when the reinforcer is omitted. Two decades of research on the neural mechanisms of fear conditioning have laid the groun...

  9. Glutamate mechanisms underlying opiate memories

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peters, J.; de Vries, T.J.

    2012-01-01

    As the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain, glutamate plays an undisputable integral role in opiate addiction. This relates, in part, to the fact that addiction is a disorder of learning and memory, and glutamate is required for most types of memory formation. As opiate addiction

  10. Underlying Mechanisms Affecting Institutionalisation of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Monitoring and evaluation of courses. • Electronic learning and web-based course design. Figure 1. SADC member states. DEMOCRATIC ... levels in the host institution, a post or person designated to the project, collaboration and synergies, recognition of 'invisible work', capacity development, institutional structure and.

  11. Brain mechanisms of flavor learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi eYamamoto

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Once the flavor of the ingested food (conditioned stimulus, CS is associated with a preferable (e.g., good taste or nutritive satisfaction or aversive (e.g., malaise with displeasure signal (unconditioned stimulus, US, animals react to its subsequent exposure by increasing or decreasing ingestion to the food. These two types of association learning (preference learning vs. aversion learning are known as classical conditioned reactions which are basic learning and memory phenomena, leading selection of food and proper food intake. Since the perception of flavor is generated by interaction of taste and odor during food intake, taste and/or odor are mainly associated with bodily signals in the flavor learning. After briefly reviewing flavor learning in general, brain mechanisms of conditioned taste aversion is described in more detail. The CS-US association leading to long-term potentiation in the amygdala, especially in its basolateral nucleus, is the basis of establishment of conditioned taste aversion. The novelty of the CS detected by the cortical gustatory area may be supportive in CS-US association. After the association, CS input is conveyed through the amygdala to different brain regions including the hippocampus for contextual fear formation, to the supramammilary and thalamic paraventricular nuclei for stressful anxiety or memory dependent fearful or stressful emotion, to the reward system to induce aversive expression to the CS, or hedonic shift from positive to negative, and to the CS-responsive neurons in the gustatory system to enhance the responsiveness to facilitate to detect the harmful stimulus.

  12. MOLECULAR MECHANISMS OF FEAR LEARNING AND MEMORY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johansen, Joshua P.; Cain, Christopher K.; Ostroff, Linnaea E.; LeDoux, Joseph E.

    2011-01-01

    Pavlovian fear conditioning is a useful behavioral paradigm for exploring the molecular mechanisms of learning and memory because a well-defined response to a specific environmental stimulus is produced through associative learning processes. Synaptic plasticity in the lateral nucleus of the amygdala (LA) underlies this form of associative learning. Here we summarize the molecular mechanisms that contribute to this synaptic plasticity in the context of auditory fear conditioning, the form of fear conditioning best understood at the molecular level. We discuss the neurotransmitter systems and signaling cascades that contribute to three phases of auditory fear conditioning: acquisition, consolidation, and reconsolidation. These studies suggest that multiple intracellular signaling pathways, including those triggered by activation of Hebbian processes and neuromodulatory receptors, interact to produce neural plasticity in the LA and behavioral fear conditioning. Together, this research illustrates the power of fear conditioning as a model system for characterizing the mechanisms of learning and memory in mammals, and potentially for understanding fear related disorders, such as PTSD and phobias. PMID:22036561

  13. BEHAVIORAL MECHANISMS UNDERLYING NICOTINE REINFORCEMENT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rupprecht, Laura E.; Smith, Tracy T.; Schassburger, Rachel L.; Buffalari, Deanne M.; Sved, Alan F.; Donny, Eric C.

    2015-01-01

    Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable deaths worldwide and nicotine, the primary psychoactive constituent in tobacco, drives sustained use. The behavioral actions of nicotine are complex and extend well beyond the actions of the drug as a primary reinforcer. Stimuli that are consistently paired with nicotine can, through associative learning, take on reinforcing properties as conditioned stimuli. These conditioned stimuli can then impact the rate and probability of behavior and even function as conditioning reinforcers that maintain behavior in the absence of nicotine. Nicotine can also act as a conditioned stimulus, predicting the delivery of other reinforcers, which may allow nicotine to acquire value as a conditioned reinforcer. These associative effects, establishing non-nicotine stimuli as conditioned stimuli with discriminative stimulus and conditioned reinforcing properties as well as establishing nicotine as a conditioned stimulus, are predicted by basic conditioning principles. However, nicotine can also act non-associatively. Nicotine directly enhances the reinforcing efficacy of other reinforcing stimuli in the environment, an effect that does not require a temporal or predictive relationship between nicotine and either the stimulus or the behavior. Hence, the reinforcing actions of nicotine stem both from the primary reinforcing actions of the drug (and the subsequent associative learning effects) as well as the reinforcement enhancement action of nicotine which is non-associative in nature. Gaining a better understanding of how nicotine impacts behavior will allow for maximally effective tobacco control efforts aimed at reducing the harm associated with tobacco use by reducing and/or treating its addictiveness. PMID:25638333

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. A finite element-based machine learning approach for modeling the mechanical behavior of the breast tissues under compression in real-time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez-Martínez, F; Rupérez-Moreno, M J; Martínez-Sober, M; Solves-Llorens, J A; Lorente, D; Serrano-López, A J; Martínez-Sanchis, S; Monserrat, C; Martín-Guerrero, J D

    2017-11-01

    This work presents a data-driven method to simulate, in real-time, the biomechanical behavior of the breast tissues in some image-guided interventions such as biopsies or radiotherapy dose delivery as well as to speed up multimodal registration algorithms. Ten real breasts were used for this work. Their deformation due to the displacement of two compression plates was simulated off-line using the finite element (FE) method. Three machine learning models were trained with the data from those simulations. Then, they were used to predict in real-time the deformation of the breast tissues during the compression. The models were a decision tree and two tree-based ensemble methods (extremely randomized trees and random forest). Two different experimental setups were designed to validate and study the performance of these models under different conditions. The mean 3D Euclidean distance between nodes predicted by the models and those extracted from the FE simulations was calculated to assess the performance of the models in the validation set. The experiments proved that extremely randomized trees performed better than the other two models. The mean error committed by the three models in the prediction of the nodal displacements was under 2 mm, a threshold usually set for clinical applications. The time needed for breast compression prediction is sufficiently short to allow its use in real-time (<0.2 s). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. 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…

  18. Skill learning and the evolution of social learning mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Post, Daniel J; Franz, Mathias; Laland, Kevin N

    2016-08-24

    Social learning is potentially advantageous, but evolutionary theory predicts that (i) its benefits may be self-limiting because social learning can lead to information parasitism, and (ii) these limitations can be mitigated via forms of selective copying. However, these findings arise from a functional approach in which learning mechanisms are not specified, and which assumes that social learning avoids the costs of asocial learning but does not produce information about the environment. Whether these findings generalize to all kinds of social learning remains to be established. Using a detailed multi-scale evolutionary model, we investigate the payoffs and information production processes of specific social learning mechanisms (including local enhancement, stimulus enhancement and observational learning) and their evolutionary consequences in the context of skill learning in foraging groups. We find that local enhancement does not benefit foraging success, but could evolve as a side-effect of grouping. In contrast, stimulus enhancement and observational learning can be beneficial across a wide range of environmental conditions because they generate opportunities for new learning outcomes. In contrast to much existing theory, we find that the functional outcomes of social learning are mechanism specific. Social learning nearly always produces information about the environment, and does not always avoid the costs of asocial learning or support information parasitism. Our study supports work emphasizing the value of incorporating mechanistic detail in functional analyses.

  19. Statistical-Mechanical Analysis Connecting Supervised Learning and Semi-Supervised Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujii, Takashi; Ito, Hidetaka; Miyoshi, Seiji

    2017-06-01

    The generalization performance of semi-supervised learning is analyzed in the framework of online learning using the statistical-mechanical method. We derive deterministically formed simultaneous differential equations that describe the dynamical behaviors of order parameters using the self-averaging property under the thermodynamic limit. By generalizing the number of labeled data, the derived theory connects supervised learning and semi-supervised learning.

  20. Study on modeling of operator's learning mechanism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoshimura, Seichi; Hasegawa, Naoko

    1998-01-01

    One effective method to analyze the causes of human errors is to model the behavior of human and to simulate it. The Central Research Institute of Electric Power Industry (CRIEPI) has developed an operator team behavior simulation system called SYBORG (Simulation System for the Behavior of an Operating Group) to analyze the human errors and to establish the countermeasures for them. As an operator behavior model which composes SYBORG has no learning mechanism and the knowledge of a plant is fixed, it cannot take suitable actions when unknown situations occur nor learn anything from the experience. However, considering actual operators, learning is an essential human factor to enhance their abilities to diagnose plant anomalies. In this paper, Q learning with 1/f fluctuation was proposed as a learning mechanism of an operator and simulation using the mechanism was conducted. The results showed the effectiveness of the learning mechanism. (author)

  1. Organizational Learning in Schools under Sanction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kara S. Finnigan

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The focus on “school turnaround” has become central to policy and practice in the United States as a result of school accountability, yet little remains known about school improvement under sanction. This study uses theories of organizational learning to understand the processes through which educators search for and adopt reform strategies, as well as the extent to which these schools’ organizational culture and climate are conducive to this type of learning. Our mixed methods study involves document analysis, intensive case studies, and a survey of teachers in schools under sanction in a large urban school district in the USA. We found limited evidence of organizational learning, and instead evidence suggested superficial use of restructuring planning, rare diagnoses of root causes of low performance, and limited engagement in learning processes of school staff. In addition, schools relied on exploitation resulting in the recycling of previous practices. In part, the limited organizational learning in evidence was the result of structures and climates within these low-performing schools that inhibited a more learning-oriented approach to reform. Our study has implications for school improvement under accountability policies as it uncovers important challenges that limit organizational learning and, as a result, school improvement under sanction.

  2. Olfactory bulb encoding during learning under anaesthesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alister U Nicol

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Neural plasticity changes within the olfactory bulb are important for olfactory learning, although how neural encoding changes support new associations with specific odours and whether they can be investigated under anaesthesia, remain unclear. Using the social transmission of food preference olfactory learning paradigm in mice in conjunction with in vivo microdialysis sampling we have shown firstly that a learned preference for a scented food odour smelled on the breath of a demonstrator animal occurs under isofluorane anaesthesia. Furthermore, subsequent exposure to this cued odour under anaesthesia promotes the same pattern of increased release of glutamate and GABA in the olfactory bulb as previously found in conscious animals following olfactory learning, and evoked GABA release was positively correlated with the amount of scented food eaten. In a second experiment, multiarray (24 electrodes electrophysiological recordings were made from olfactory bulb mitral cells under isofluorane anaesthesia before, during and after a novel scented food odour was paired with carbon disulfide. Results showed significant increases in overall firing frequency to the cued-odour during and after learning and decreases in response to an uncued odour. Analysis of patterns of changes in individual neurons revealed that a substantial proportion (>50% of them significantly changed their response profiles during and after learning with most of those previously inhibited becoming excited. A large number of cells exhibiting no response to the odours prior to learning were either excited or inhibited afterwards. With the uncued odour many previously responsive cells became unresponsive or inhibited. Learning associated changes only occurred in the posterior part of the olfactory bulb. Thus olfactory learning under anaesthesia promotes extensive, but spatially distinct, changes in mitral cell networks to both cued and uncued odours as well as in evoked glutamate and

  3. Olfactory bulb encoding during learning under anesthesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nicol, Alister U.; Sanchez-Andrade, Gabriela; Collado, Paloma; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Kendrick, Keith M.

    2014-01-01

    Neural plasticity changes within the olfactory bulb are important for olfactory learning, although how neural encoding changes support new associations with specific odors and whether they can be investigated under anesthesia, remain unclear. Using the social transmission of food preference olfactory learning paradigm in mice in conjunction with in vivo microdialysis sampling we have shown firstly that a learned preference for a scented food odor smelled on the breath of a demonstrator animal occurs under isofluorane anesthesia. Furthermore, subsequent exposure to this cued odor under anesthesia promotes the same pattern of increased release of glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the olfactory bulb as previously found in conscious animals following olfactory learning, and evoked GABA release was positively correlated with the amount of scented food eaten. In a second experiment, multiarray (24 electrodes) electrophysiological recordings were made from olfactory bulb mitral cells under isofluorane anesthesia before, during and after a novel scented food odor was paired with carbon disulfide. Results showed significant increases in overall firing frequency to the cued-odor during and after learning and decreases in response to an uncued odor. Analysis of patterns of changes in individual neurons revealed that a substantial proportion (>50%) of them significantly changed their response profiles during and after learning with most of those previously inhibited becoming excited. A large number of cells exhibiting no response to the odors prior to learning were either excited or inhibited afterwards. With the uncued odor many previously responsive cells became unresponsive or inhibited. Learning associated changes only occurred in the posterior part of the olfactory bulb. Thus olfactory learning under anesthesia promotes extensive, but spatially distinct, changes in mitral cell networks to both cued and uncued odors as well as in evoked glutamate and GABA

  4. Cellular mechanisms for altered learning in aging

    OpenAIRE

    Oh, M Matthew; Disterhoft, John F

    2010-01-01

    Getting gray hair is part of the natural progression of aging. People expect it and they can change their hair color, if they choose. People also expect increases in memory lapses and learning difficulties as they get older. However, unlike hair color, there is no magic cure or option to fix learning and memory difficulties, because the cellular mechanisms of learning and aging in all the different types of neurons throughout the brain have yet to be discovered. This review describes our effo...

  5. On learning dynamics underlying the evolution of learning rules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dridi, Slimane; Lehmann, Laurent

    2014-02-01

    In order to understand the development of non-genetically encoded actions during an animal's lifespan, it is necessary to analyze the dynamics and evolution of learning rules producing behavior. Owing to the intrinsic stochastic and frequency-dependent nature of learning dynamics, these rules are often studied in evolutionary biology via agent-based computer simulations. In this paper, we show that stochastic approximation theory can help to qualitatively understand learning dynamics and formulate analytical models for the evolution of learning rules. We consider a population of individuals repeatedly interacting during their lifespan, and where the stage game faced by the individuals fluctuates according to an environmental stochastic process. Individuals adjust their behavioral actions according to learning rules belonging to the class of experience-weighted attraction learning mechanisms, which includes standard reinforcement and Bayesian learning as special cases. We use stochastic approximation theory in order to derive differential equations governing action play probabilities, which turn out to have qualitative features of mutator-selection equations. We then perform agent-based simulations to find the conditions where the deterministic approximation is closest to the original stochastic learning process for standard 2-action 2-player fluctuating games, where interaction between learning rules and preference reversal may occur. Finally, we analyze a simplified model for the evolution of learning in a producer-scrounger game, which shows that the exploration rate can interact in a non-intuitive way with other features of co-evolving learning rules. Overall, our analyses illustrate the usefulness of applying stochastic approximation theory in the study of animal learning. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Properties and mechanisms of olfactory learning and memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle T Tong

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Memories are dynamic physical phenomena with psychometric forms as well as characteristic timescales. Most of our understanding of the cellular mechanisms underlying the neurophysiology of memory, however, derives from one-trial learning paradigms that, while powerful, do not fully embody the gradual, representational, and statistical aspects of cumulative learning. The early olfactory system -- particularly olfactory bulb -- comprises a reasonably well-understood and experimentally accessible neuronal network with intrinsic plasticity that underlies both one-trial (adult aversive, neonatal and cumulative (adult appetitive odor learning. These olfactory circuits employ many of the same molecular and structural mechanisms of memory as, for example, hippocampal circuits following inhibitory avoidance conditioning, but the temporal sequences of post-conditioning molecular events are likely to differ owing to the need to incorporate new information from ongoing learning events into the evolving memory trace. Moreover, the shapes of acquired odor representations, and their gradual transformation over the course of cumulative learning, also can be directly measured, adding an additional representational dimension to the traditional metrics of memory strength and persistence. In this review, we describe some established molecular and structural mechanisms of memory with a focus on the timecourses of post-conditioning molecular processes. We describe the properties of odor learning intrinsic to the olfactory bulb and review the utility of the olfactory system of adult rodents as a memory system in which to study the cellular mechanisms of cumulative learning.

  7. Identification of learning mechanisms in a wild meerkat population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Will Hoppitt

    Full Text Available Vigorous debates as to the evolutionary origins of culture remain unresolved due to an absence of methods for identifying learning mechanisms in natural populations. While laboratory experiments on captive animals have revealed evidence for a number of mechanisms, these may not necessarily reflect the processes typically operating in nature. We developed a novel method that allows social and asocial learning mechanisms to be determined in animal groups from the patterns of interaction with, and solving of, a task. We deployed it to analyse learning in groups of wild meerkats (Suricata suricatta presented with a novel foraging apparatus. We identify nine separate learning processes underlying the meerkats' foraging behaviour, in each case precisely quantifying their strength and duration, including local enhancement, emulation, and a hitherto unrecognized form of social learning, which we term 'observational perseverance'. Our analysis suggests a key factor underlying the stability of behavioural traditions is a high ratio of specific to generalized social learning effects. The approach has widespread potential as an ecologically valid tool to investigate learning mechanisms in natural groups of animals, including humans.

  8. Identification of Learning Mechanisms in a Wild Meerkat Population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoppitt, Will; Samson, Jamie; Laland, Kevin N.; Thornton, Alex

    2012-01-01

    Vigorous debates as to the evolutionary origins of culture remain unresolved due to an absence of methods for identifying learning mechanisms in natural populations. While laboratory experiments on captive animals have revealed evidence for a number of mechanisms, these may not necessarily reflect the processes typically operating in nature. We developed a novel method that allows social and asocial learning mechanisms to be determined in animal groups from the patterns of interaction with, and solving of, a task. We deployed it to analyse learning in groups of wild meerkats (Suricata suricatta) presented with a novel foraging apparatus. We identify nine separate learning processes underlying the meerkats’ foraging behaviour, in each case precisely quantifying their strength and duration, including local enhancement, emulation, and a hitherto unrecognized form of social learning, which we term ‘observational perseverance’. Our analysis suggests a key factor underlying the stability of behavioural traditions is a high ratio of specific to generalized social learning effects. The approach has widespread potential as an ecologically valid tool to investigate learning mechanisms in natural groups of animals, including humans. PMID:22905113

  9. 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.

  10. The Evolution of Learning Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, John; Garcia y Robertson, Rodrigo

    This paper introduces seven principles of learning, enduring over the last five centuries of psychological thought, to discuss the evolution of the "Biophyche" (the brain in action) in the development of humans and other large organisms. It describes the conditioning theories of Darwin, Pavlov, and Thorndike and critically reviews the…

  11. 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.

  12. A Bayesian foundation for individual learning under uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph eMathys

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Computational learning models are critical for understanding mechanisms of adaptive behavior. However, the two major current frameworks, reinforcement learning (RL and Bayesian learning, both have certain limitations. For example, many Bayesian models are agnostic of inter-individual variability and involve complicated integrals, making online learning difficult. Here, we introduce a generic hierarchical Bayesian framework for individual learning under multiple forms of uncertainty (e.g., environmental volatility and perceptual uncertainty. The model assumes Gaussian random walks of states at all but the first level, with the step size determined by the next higher level. The coupling between levels is controlled by parameters that shape the influence of uncertainty on learning in a subject-specific fashion. Using variational Bayes under a mean field approximation and a novel approximation to the posterior energy function, we derive trial-by-trial update equations which (i are analytical and extremely efficient, enabling real-time learning, (ii have a natural interpretation in terms of RL, and (iii contain parameters representing processes which play a key role in current theories of learning, e.g., precision-weighting of prediction error. These parameters allow for the expression of individual differences in learning and may relate to specific neuromodulatory mechanisms in the brain. Our model is very general: it can deal with both discrete and continuous states and equally accounts for deterministic and probabilistic relations between environmental events and perceptual states (i.e., situations with and without perceptual uncertainty. These properties are illustrated by simulations and analyses of empirical time series. Overall, our framework provides a novel foundation for understanding normal and pathological learning that contextualizes RL within a generic Bayesian scheme and thus connects it to principles of optimality from probability

  13. A bayesian foundation for individual learning under uncertainty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathys, Christoph; Daunizeau, Jean; Friston, Karl J; Stephan, Klaas E

    2011-01-01

    Computational learning models are critical for understanding mechanisms of adaptive behavior. However, the two major current frameworks, reinforcement learning (RL) and Bayesian learning, both have certain limitations. For example, many Bayesian models are agnostic of inter-individual variability and involve complicated integrals, making online learning difficult. Here, we introduce a generic hierarchical Bayesian framework for individual learning under multiple forms of uncertainty (e.g., environmental volatility and perceptual uncertainty). The model assumes Gaussian random walks of states at all but the first level, with the step size determined by the next highest level. The coupling between levels is controlled by parameters that shape the influence of uncertainty on learning in a subject-specific fashion. Using variational Bayes under a mean-field approximation and a novel approximation to the posterior energy function, we derive trial-by-trial update equations which (i) are analytical and extremely efficient, enabling real-time learning, (ii) have a natural interpretation in terms of RL, and (iii) contain parameters representing processes which play a key role in current theories of learning, e.g., precision-weighting of prediction error. These parameters allow for the expression of individual differences in learning and may relate to specific neuromodulatory mechanisms in the brain. Our model is very general: it can deal with both discrete and continuous states and equally accounts for deterministic and probabilistic relations between environmental events and perceptual states (i.e., situations with and without perceptual uncertainty). These properties are illustrated by simulations and analyses of empirical time series. Overall, our framework provides a novel foundation for understanding normal and pathological learning that contextualizes RL within a generic Bayesian scheme and thus connects it to principles of optimality from probability theory.

  14. Selective social learning in infancy: looking for mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crivello, Cristina; Phillips, Sara; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    2017-08-30

    Although there is mounting evidence that selective social learning begins in infancy, the psychological mechanisms underlying this ability are currently a controversial issue. The purpose of this study is to investigate whether theory of mind abilities and statistical learning skills are related to infants' selective social learning. Seventy-seven 18-month-olds were first exposed to a reliable or an unreliable speaker and then completed a word learning task, two theory of mind tasks, and a statistical learning task. If domain-general abilities are linked to selective social learning, then infants who demonstrate superior performance on the statistical learning task should perform better on the selective learning task, that is, should be less likely to learn words from an unreliable speaker. Alternatively, if domain-specific abilities are involved, then superior performance on theory of mind tasks should be related to selective learning performance. Findings revealed that, as expected, infants were more likely to learn a novel word from a reliable speaker. Importantly, infants who passed a theory of mind task assessing knowledge attribution were significantly less likely to learn a novel word from an unreliable speaker compared to infants who failed this task. No such effect was observed for the other tasks. These results suggest that infants who possess superior social-cognitive abilities are more apt to reject an unreliable speaker as informant. A video abstract of this article can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/zuuCniHYzqo. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Adaptive Learning as a Propagation Mechanism

    OpenAIRE

    Bruce Preston; Stefano Eusepi

    2007-01-01

    Finally, following Smith (1993), we estimate the model using indirect inference methods. The empirical implications of the model both under learning and rational expectations are explored. Furthermore, we test the relative importance of various model frictions and learning dynamics in capturing the volatility and persistence of observed macroeconomic data.

  16. 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.

  17. Cellular mechanisms for altered learning in aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, M Matthew; Disterhoft, John F

    2010-01-01

    Getting gray hair is part of the natural progression of aging. People expect it and they can change their hair color, if they choose. People also expect increases in memory lapses and learning difficulties as they get older. However, unlike hair color, there is no magic cure or option to fix learning and memory difficulties, because the cellular mechanisms of learning and aging in all the different types of neurons throughout the brain have yet to be discovered. This review describes our efforts to identify a cellular biomarker in hippocampal pyramidal neurons that has been demonstrated to reliably change with learning and with aging - the postburst afterhyperpolarization. We propose that this biomarker, which plays a critical role in regulating neuronal excitability, can be used as a benchmark for future studies in order to understand and identify the cellular mechanisms of learning and aging in the hippocampus, as well as in other cortical regions.

  18. 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.

  19. Exploring the mechanisms through which computers contribute to learning.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Karasavvidis, I.; Karasavvidis, I.; Pieters, Julius Marie; Plomp, T.

    2003-01-01

    Even though it has been established that the incorporation of computers into the teaching and learning process enhances student performance, the underlying mechanisms through which this is accomplished have been largely unexplored. The present study aims to shed light on this issue. Two groups of 10

  20. The statistical mechanics of learning a rule

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watkin, T.L.H.; Rau, A.; Biehl, M.

    1993-01-01

    A summary is presented of the statistical mechanical theory of learning a rule with a neural network, a rapidly advancing area which is closely related to other inverse problems frequently encountered by physicists. By emphasizing the relationship between neural networks and strongly interacting physical systems, such as spin glasses, the authors show how learning theory has provided a workshop in which to develop new, exact analytical techniques

  1. Reconciling genetic evolution and the associative learning account of mirror neurons through data-acquisition mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lotem, Arnon; Kolodny, Oren

    2014-04-01

    An associative learning account of mirror neurons should not preclude genetic evolution of its underlying mechanisms. On the contrary, an associative learning framework for cognitive development should seek heritable variation in the learning rules and in the data-acquisition mechanisms that construct associative networks, demonstrating how small genetic modifications of associative elements can give rise to the evolution of complex cognition.

  2. 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.

  3. 2.45 GHz Microwave Radiation Impairs Learning and Spatial Memory via Oxidative/Nitrosative Stress Induced p53-Dependent/Independent Hippocampal Apoptosis: Molecular Basis and Underlying Mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahin, Saba; Banerjee, Somanshu; Singh, Surya Pal; Chaturvedi, Chandra Mohini

    2015-12-01

    A close association between microwave (MW) radiation exposure and neurobehavioral disorders has been postulated but the direct effects of MW radiation on central nervous system still remains contradictory. This study was performed to understand the effect of short (15 days) and long-term (30 and 60 days) low-level MW radiation exposure on hippocampus with special reference to spatial learning and memory and its underlying mechanism in Swiss strain male mice, Mus musculus. Twelve-weeks old mice were exposed to 2.45 GHz MW radiation (continuous-wave [CW] with overall average power density of 0.0248 mW/cm(2) and overall average whole body specific absorption rate value of 0.0146 W/Kg) for 2 h/day over a period of 15, 30, and 60 days). Spatial learning and memory was monitored by Morris Water Maze. We have checked the alterations in hippocampal oxidative/nitrosative stress, neuronal morphology, and expression of pro-apoptotic proteins (p53 and Bax), inactive executioner Caspase- (pro-Caspase-3), and uncleaved Poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 in the hippocampal subfield neuronal and nonneuronal cells (DG, CA1, CA2, and CA3). We observed that, short-term as well as long-term 2.45 GHz MW radiation exposure increases the oxidative/nitrosative stress leading to enhanced apoptosis in hippocampal subfield neuronal and nonneuronal cells. Present findings also suggest that learning and spatial memory deficit which increases with the increased duration of MW exposure (15 stress induced p53-dependent/independent activation of hippocampal neuronal and nonneuronal apoptosis associated with spatial memory loss. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society of Toxicology. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Learning the mechanisms of chemical disequilibria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nicholson, Schuyler B.; Alaghemandi, Mohammad; Green, Jason R.

    2016-01-01

    When at equilibrium, large-scale systems obey thermodynamics because they have microscopic configurations that are typical. “Typical” states are a fraction of those possible with the majority of the probability. A more precise definition of typical states underlies the transmission, coding, and compression of information. However, this definition does not apply to natural systems that are transiently away from equilibrium. Here, we introduce a variational measure of typicality and apply it to atomistic simulations of a model for hydrogen oxidation. While a gaseous mixture of hydrogen and oxygen combusts, reactant molecules transform through a variety of ephemeral species en route to the product, water. Out of the exponentially growing number of possible sequences of chemical species, we find that greater than 95% of the probability concentrates in less than 1% of the possible sequences. Overall, these results extend the notion of typicality across the nonequilibrium regime and suggest that typical sequences are a route to learning mechanisms from experimental measurements. They also open up the possibility of constructing ensembles for computing the macroscopic observables of systems out of equilibrium.

  5. Learning: Statistical Mechanisms in Language Acquisition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wonnacott, Elizabeth

    The grammatical structure of human languages is extremely complex, yet children master this complexity with apparent ease. One explanation is that we come to the task of acquisition equipped with knowledge about the possible grammatical structures of human languages—so-called "Universal Grammar". An alternative is that grammatical patterns are abstracted from the input via a process of identifying reoccurring patterns and using that information to form grammatical generalizations. This statistical learning hypothesis receives support from computational research, which has revealed that even low level statistics based on adjacent word co-occurrences yield grammatically relevant information. Moreover, even as adults, our knowledge and usage of grammatical patterns is often graded and probabilistic, and in ways which directly reflect the statistical makeup of the language we experience. The current chapter explores such evidence and concludes that statistical learning mechanisms play a critical role in acquisition, whilst acknowledging holes in our current knowledge, particularly with respect to the learning of `higher level' syntactic behaviours. Throughout, I emphasize that although a statistical approach is traditionally associated with a strongly empiricist position, specific accounts make specific claims about the nature of the learner, both in terms of learning mechanisms and the information that is primitive to the learning system. In particular, working models which construct grammatical generalizations often assume inbuilt semantic abstractions.

  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. 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.

  8. 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

  9. Learning Predictive Statistics: Strategies and Brain Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Rui; Shen, Yuan; Tino, Peter; Welchman, Andrew E; Kourtzi, Zoe

    2017-08-30

    When immersed in a new environment, we are challenged to decipher initially incomprehensible streams of sensory information. However, quite rapidly, the brain finds structure and meaning in these incoming signals, helping us to predict and prepare ourselves for future actions. This skill relies on extracting the statistics of event streams in the environment that contain regularities of variable complexity from simple repetitive patterns to complex probabilistic combinations. Here, we test the brain mechanisms that mediate our ability to adapt to the environment's statistics and predict upcoming events. By combining behavioral training and multisession fMRI in human participants (male and female), we track the corticostriatal mechanisms that mediate learning of temporal sequences as they change in structure complexity. We show that learning of predictive structures relates to individual decision strategy; that is, selecting the most probable outcome in a given context (maximizing) versus matching the exact sequence statistics. These strategies engage distinct human brain regions: maximizing engages dorsolateral prefrontal, cingulate, sensory-motor regions, and basal ganglia (dorsal caudate, putamen), whereas matching engages occipitotemporal regions (including the hippocampus) and basal ganglia (ventral caudate). Our findings provide evidence for distinct corticostriatal mechanisms that facilitate our ability to extract behaviorally relevant statistics to make predictions. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Making predictions about future events relies on interpreting streams of information that may initially appear incomprehensible. Past work has studied how humans identify repetitive patterns and associative pairings. However, the natural environment contains regularities that vary in complexity from simple repetition to complex probabilistic combinations. Here, we combine behavior and multisession fMRI to track the brain mechanisms that mediate our ability to adapt to

  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. The right time to learn: mechanisms and optimization of spaced learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolen, Paul; Zhang, Yili; Byrne, John H.

    2016-01-01

    For many types of learning, spaced training, which involves repeated long inter-trial intervals, leads to more robust memory formation than does massed training, which involves short or no intervals. Several cognitive theories have been proposed to explain this superiority, but only recently have data begun to delineate the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms of spaced training, and we review these theories and data here. Computational models of the implicated signalling cascades have predicted that spaced training with irregular inter-trial intervals can enhance learning. This strategy of using models to predict optimal spaced training protocols, combined with pharmacotherapy, suggests novel ways to rescue impaired synaptic plasticity and learning. PMID:26806627

  12. The right time to learn: mechanisms and optimization of spaced learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolen, Paul; Zhang, Yili; Byrne, John H

    2016-02-01

    For many types of learning, spaced training, which involves repeated long inter-trial intervals, leads to more robust memory formation than does massed training, which involves short or no intervals. Several cognitive theories have been proposed to explain this superiority, but only recently have data begun to delineate the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms of spaced training, and we review these theories and data here. Computational models of the implicated signalling cascades have predicted that spaced training with irregular inter-trial intervals can enhance learning. This strategy of using models to predict optimal spaced training protocols, combined with pharmacotherapy, suggests novel ways to rescue impaired synaptic plasticity and learning.

  13. Learning as discourse change: A sociocultural mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickman, Per-Olof; Östman, Leif

    2002-09-01

    This paper deals with a theoretical mechanism for learning and a methodological approach for analyzing meaning making in classroom talk and action. It examines the potential of the approach for illuminating learning on a discursive level, i.e., how discourses change and how individuals become participants of new practices. Our approach involves a high-resolution analysis of how meaningful relations are built in encounters between individuals and between individuals and the world. The approach is based mainly on the work of the later Wittgenstein, but also on pragmatism and sociocultural research. To demonstrate how our approach can be used, we analyze what university students learn during a practical on insects. We specifically demonstrate how the encounters with physical pinned insects contribute to the meaning students make and how these encounters interact with other experiences during laboratory work.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Dissecting the mechanisms of squirrel monkey (Saimiri boliviensis) social learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopper, Lm; Holmes, An; Williams, LE; Brosnan, Sf

    2013-01-01

    Although the social learning abilities of monkeys have been well documented, this research has only focused on a few species. Furthermore, of those that also incorporated dissections of social learning mechanisms, the majority studied either capuchins (Cebus apella) or marmosets (Callithrix jacchus). To gain a broader understanding of how monkeys gain new skills, we tested squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis) which have never been studied in tests of social learning mechanisms. To determine whether S. boliviensis can socially learn, we ran "open diffusion" tests with monkeys housed in two social groups (N = 23). Over the course of 10 20-min sessions, the monkeys in each group observed a trained group member retrieving a mealworm from a bidirectional task (the "Slide-box"). Two thirds (67%) of these monkeys both learned how to operate the Slide-box and they also moved the door significantly more times in the direction modeled by the trained demonstrator than the alternative direction. To tease apart the underlying social learning mechanisms we ran a series of three control conditions with 35 squirrel monkeys that had no previous experience with the Slide-box. The first replicated the experimental open diffusion sessions but without the inclusion of a trained model, the second was a no-information control with dyads of monkeys, and the third was a 'ghost' display shown to individual monkeys. The first two controls tested for the importance of social support (mere presence effect) and the ghost display showed the affordances of the task to the monkeys. The monkeys showed a certain level of success in the group control (54% of subjects solved the task on one or more occasions) and paired controls (28% were successful) but none were successful in the ghost control. We propose that the squirrel monkeys' learning, observed in the experimental open diffusion tests, can be best described by a combination of social learning mechanisms in concert; in this case, those

  17. Dissecting the mechanisms of squirrel monkey (Saimiri boliviensis social learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LM Hopper

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Although the social learning abilities of monkeys have been well documented, this research has only focused on a few species. Furthermore, of those that also incorporated dissections of social learning mechanisms, the majority studied either capuchins (Cebus apella or marmosets (Callithrix jacchus. To gain a broader understanding of how monkeys gain new skills, we tested squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis which have never been studied in tests of social learning mechanisms. To determine whether S. boliviensis can socially learn, we ran “open diffusion” tests with monkeys housed in two social groups (N = 23. Over the course of 10 20-min sessions, the monkeys in each group observed a trained group member retrieving a mealworm from a bidirectional task (the “Slide-box”. Two thirds (67% of these monkeys both learned how to operate the Slide-box and they also moved the door significantly more times in the direction modeled by the trained demonstrator than the alternative direction. To tease apart the underlying social learning mechanisms we ran a series of three control conditions with 35 squirrel monkeys that had no previous experience with the Slide-box. The first replicated the experimental open diffusion sessions but without the inclusion of a trained model, the second was a no-information control with dyads of monkeys, and the third was a ‘ghost’ display shown to individual monkeys. The first two controls tested for the importance of social support (mere presence effect and the ghost display showed the affordances of the task to the monkeys. The monkeys showed a certain level of success in the group control (54% of subjects solved the task on one or more occasions and paired controls (28% were successful but none were successful in the ghost control. We propose that the squirrel monkeys’ learning, observed in the experimental open diffusion tests, can be best described by a combination of social learning mechanisms in concert

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Mind and activity. Psychic mechanism of learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zoya A. Reshetova

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper is devoted to the issue of mechanisms of learning for understanding the nature of the human mind. Learning is regarded as a special activity that is important for developing the human mind in a specific cultural and historical setting and indirect activity. The author’s understanding of the ideas developed by the psychological theory of activity for establishing the principles of developing the human mind is highlighted. Interpretation of dialectical connections of brain processes and mind, and also the objective activity that emerges them is provided. According to the activity theory, the causes of the students’ psychological difficulties and the low efficacy of learning within predominant reproductive method or the use of the trial and error method are revealed. Thus, a new understanding of the renowned didactic principles of scientific rigour, accessibility, objectivity, the connection of learning with life and others is offered. The contribution of the psychological theory in organizing and managing the studies, increasing teaching activity and awareness, and the growth of the internal causes of motivation are shown. Particular attention is paid to the issue of intellectual development and creative abilities. The author believes the creative abilities of the student and the way the latter are taught are interconnected. At the same time, the developers and educators should make efforts to develop in the students a systemic orientation in the subject, primarily mastering the method of system analysis. Once the method of system analysis has been mastered, it becomes a general intellectual and developing tool through which activities are organized to solve any teaching problems with whatever type of content and difficulty level. Summing up, the organization and disclosure to the student of the process of learning as an activity with its social, consciously transformative and sense shaping meaning, the conditions of its development

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

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

    The research team will also test persons with dyslexia to understand how this disorder may be related to impairments in the person's ability to learn new sound patterns. Project leadership. The project lead is Robert Zatorre at McGill University, Canada. His collaborators are Merav Ahissar, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, ...

  3. Developmental Changes in Learning: Computational Mechanisms and Social Influences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Bolenz

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Our ability to learn from the outcomes of our actions and to adapt our decisions accordingly changes over the course of the human lifespan. In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in using computational models to understand developmental changes in learning and decision-making. Moreover, extensions of these models are currently applied to study socio-emotional influences on learning in different age groups, a topic that is of great relevance for applications in education and health psychology. In this article, we aim to provide an introduction to basic ideas underlying computational models of reinforcement learning and focus on parameters and model variants that might be of interest to developmental scientists. We then highlight recent attempts to use reinforcement learning models to study the influence of social information on learning across development. The aim of this review is to illustrate how computational models can be applied in developmental science, what they can add to our understanding of developmental mechanisms and how they can be used to bridge the gap between psychological and neurobiological theories of development.

  4. Developmental Changes in Learning: Computational Mechanisms and Social Influences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolenz, Florian; Reiter, Andrea M. F.; Eppinger, Ben

    2017-01-01

    Our ability to learn from the outcomes of our actions and to adapt our decisions accordingly changes over the course of the human lifespan. In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in using computational models to understand developmental changes in learning and decision-making. Moreover, extensions of these models are currently applied to study socio-emotional influences on learning in different age groups, a topic that is of great relevance for applications in education and health psychology. In this article, we aim to provide an introduction to basic ideas underlying computational models of reinforcement learning and focus on parameters and model variants that might be of interest to developmental scientists. We then highlight recent attempts to use reinforcement learning models to study the influence of social information on learning across development. The aim of this review is to illustrate how computational models can be applied in developmental science, what they can add to our understanding of developmental mechanisms and how they can be used to bridge the gap between psychological and neurobiological theories of development. PMID:29250006

  5. ATLAS Beam Steering Mechanism (BSM) Lessons Learned

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumenstock, Kenneth A.; Cramer, Alexander K.; Gosten, Alan B.; Hakun, Claef F.; Haney, Paul G.; Hinkle, Matthew R.; Lee, Kenneth Y.; Lugo, Carlos F.; Matuszeski, Adam J.; Morell, Armando; hide

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the design, testing, and lessons learned during the development of the Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (ATLAS) Beam Steering Mechanism (BSM). The BSM is a 2 degree-of-freedom tip-tilt mechanism for the purpose of pointing a flat mirror to tightly control the co-alignment of the transmitted laser and the receiver telescope of the ATLAS instrument. The high resolution needs of the mission resulted in sub-arcsecond pointing and knowledge requirements, which have been met. Development of the methodology to verify performance required significant effort. The BSM will fly as part of the Ice, Cloud, and Elevation Satellite II Mission (ICESat II), which is scheduled to be launched in 2017. The ICESat II primary mission is to map the Earth's surface topography for the determination of seasonal changes of ice sheet thickness and vegetation canopy thickness to establish long-term trends.

  6. ATLAS Beam Steering Mechanism Lessons Learned

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumenstock, Kenneth A.; Cramer, Alexander K.; Gostin, Alan B.; Hakun, Claef F.; Haney, Paul G.; Hinkle, Matthew R.; Lee, Kenneth Y.; Lugo, Carlos F.; Matuszeski, Adam J.; Morrell, Armando; hide

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the design, testing, and lessons learned during the development of the Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (ATLAS) Beam Steering Mechanism (BSM). The BSM is a 2 degree-of-freedom tip-tilt mechanism for the purpose of pointing a flat mirror to tightly control the co-alignment of the transmitted laser and the receiver telescope of the ATLAS instrument. The high resolution needs of the mission resulted in sub-arcsecond pointing and knowledge requirements, which have been met. Development of the methodology to verify performance required significant effort. The BSM will fly as part of the Ice, Cloud, and Elevation Satellite II Mission (ICESat II), which is scheduled to be launched in 2017. The ICESat II primary mission is to map the earth's surface topography for the determination of seasonal changes of ice sheet thickness and vegetation canopy thickness to establish long-term trends.

  7. Beam Steering Mechanism (BSM) Lessons Learned

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumenstock, Kenneth A.; Cramer, Alexander K.; Gostin, Alan B.; Hakun, Claef F.; Haney, Paul G.; Hinkle, Matthew R.; Lee, Kenneth Y.; Lugo, Carlos F.; Matuszeski, Adam J.; Morell, Armando; hide

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes the design, testing, and lessons learned during the development of the Advanced Topographic Laser Altimeter System (ATLAS) Beam Steering Mechanism (BSM). The BSM is a 2 degree-of-freedom tip-tilt mechanism for the purpose of pointing a flat mirror to tightly control the co-alignment of the transmitted laser and the receiver telescope of the ATLAS instrument. High resolution needs of the mission resulted in sub-arcsecond pointing and knowledge requirements, which have been met. Development of methodology to verify performance was a significant effortadvancement. The BSM will fly as part of the Ice, Cloud, and Elevation Satellite 2 Mission (ICESat 2), which is scheduled to be launched in 2017. The ICESat 2 primary mission is to map the earths surface topography for the determination of seasonal changes of ice sheet thickness as well as vegetation canopy thickness.

  8. Motor learning in childhood reveals distinct mechanisms for memory retention and re-learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musselman, Kristin E; Roemmich, Ryan T; Garrett, Ben; Bastian, Amy J

    2016-05-01

    Adults can easily learn and access multiple versions of the same motor skill adapted for different conditions (e.g., walking in water, sand, snow). Following even a single session of adaptation, adults exhibit clear day-to-day retention and faster re-learning of the adapted pattern. Here, we studied the retention and re-learning of an adapted walking pattern in children aged 6-17 yr. We found that all children, regardless of age, showed adult-like patterns of retention of the adapted walking pattern. In contrast, children under 12 yr of age did not re-learn faster on the next day after washout had occurred-they behaved as if they had never adapted their walking before. Re-learning could be improved in younger children when the adaptation time on day 1 was increased to allow more practice at the plateau of the adapted pattern, but never to adult-like levels. These results show that the ability to store a separate, adapted version of the same general motor pattern does not fully develop until adolescence, and furthermore, that the mechanisms underlying the retention and rapid re-learning of adapted motor patterns are distinct. © 2016 Musselman et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  9. 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.

  10. Learning under stress: how does it work?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Joëls, M.; Pu, Z.; Wiegert, O.; Oitzl, M.S.; Krugers, H.

    2006-01-01

    The effects of stress on learning and memory are not always clear: both facilitating and impairing influences are described in the literature. Here we propose a unifying theory, which states that stress will only facilitate learning and memory processes: (i) when stress is experienced in the context

  11. 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 ...

  12. 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

  13. Stochastic Online Learning in Dynamic Networks under Unknown Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-08-02

    Stochastic Online Learning in Dynamic Networks under Unknown Models This research aims to develop fundamental theories and practical algorithms for...12211 Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2211 Online learning , multi-armed bandit, dynamic networks REPORT DOCUMENTATION PAGE 11. SPONSOR/MONITOR’S... Online Learning in Dynamic Networks under Unknown Models Report Title This research aims to develop fundamental theories and practical algorithms for

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Different mechanisms in learning different second languages: Evidence from English speakers learning Chinese and Spanish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Fan; Sussman, Bethany L; Rios, Valeria; Yan, Xin; Wang, Zhao; Spray, Gregory J; Mack, Ryan M

    2017-03-01

    Word reading has been found to be associated with different neural networks in different languages, with greater involvement of the lexical pathway for opaque languages and greater invovlement of the sub-lexical pathway for transparent langauges. However, we do not know whether this language divergence can be demonstrated in second langauge learners, how learner's metalinguistic ability would modulate the langauge divergence, or whether learning method would interact with the language divergence. In this study, we attempted to answer these questions by comparing brain activations of Chinese and Spanish word reading in native English-speaking adults who learned Chinese and Spanish over a 2 week period under three learning conditions: phonological, handwriting, and passive viewing. We found that mapping orthography to phonology in Chinese had greater activation in the left inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and left inferior temporal gyrus (ITG) than in Spanish, suggesting greater invovlement of the lexical pathway in opaque langauges. In contrast, Spanish words evoked greater activation in the left superior temporal gyrus (STG) than English, suggesting greater invovlement of the sublexical pathway for transparant languages. Furthermore, brain-behavior correlation analyses found that higher phonological awareness and rapid naming were associated with greater activation in the bilateral IFG for Chinese and in the bilateral STG for Spanish, suggesting greater language divergence in participants with higher meta-linguistic awareness. Finally, a significant interaction between the language and learning condition was found in the left STG and middle frontal gyrus (MFG), with greater activation in handwriting learning than viewing learning in the left STG only for Spanish, and greater activation in handwriting learning than phonological learning in the left MFG only for Chinese. These findings suggest that handwriting facilitates assembled phonology in Spanish and addressed

  20. Neuronal mechanisms of motor learning and motor memory consolidation in healthy old adults

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berghuis, K. M. M.; Veldman, M. P.; Solnik, S.; Koch, G.; Zijdewind, I.; Hortobagyi, T.

    It is controversial whether or not old adults are capable of learning new motor skills and consolidate the performance gains into motor memory in the offline period. The underlying neuronal mechanisms are equally unclear. We determined the magnitude of motor learning and motor memory consolidation

  1. 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).

  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. Exploring the Learning Mechanism in Educational Games

    OpenAIRE

    Kiili, Kristian; Ketamo, Harri

    2007-01-01

    The main aim of this paper is to evaluate the problem based gaming model that tries to explain the learning process in educational games. The model was studied through Geometry game aimed for pre-school children (N = 24). The game relays on learning by teaching approach and involves AI-engine modeling the human concept learning structures. The qualitative analyses were used to explore participants learning processes and gaming strategies. The results indicated that the model well describes th...

  4. A Blended Learning Approach to Teach Fluid Mechanics in Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahman, Ataur

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents a case study on the teaching and learning of fluid mechanics at the University of Western Sydney (UWS), Australia, by applying a blended learning approach (BLA). In the adopted BLA, various flexible learning materials have been made available to the students such as online recorded lectures, online recorded tutorials, hand…

  5. Online Regularized and Kernelized Extreme Learning Machines with Forgetting Mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xinran Zhou

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available To apply the single hidden-layer feedforward neural networks (SLFN to identify time-varying system, online regularized extreme learning machine (ELM with forgetting mechanism (FORELM and online kernelized ELM with forgetting mechanism (FOKELM are presented in this paper. The FORELM updates the output weights of SLFN recursively by using Sherman-Morrison formula, and it combines advantages of online sequential ELM with forgetting mechanism (FOS-ELM and regularized online sequential ELM (ReOS-ELM; that is, it can capture the latest properties of identified system by studying a certain number of the newest samples and also can avoid issue of ill-conditioned matrix inversion by regularization. The FOKELM tackles the problem of matrix expansion of kernel based incremental ELM (KB-IELM by deleting the oldest sample according to the block matrix inverse formula when samples occur continually. The experimental results show that the proposed FORELM and FOKELM have better stability than FOS-ELM and have higher accuracy than ReOS-ELM in nonstationary environments; moreover, FORELM and FOKELM have time efficiencies superiority over dynamic regression extreme learning machine (DR-ELM under certain conditions.

  6. Molecular mechanisms involved in taste learning and memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrés Molero-Chamizo

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Taste learning, and particularly conditioned taste aversion (CTA, is an adaptive learning involving complex brain mechanisms and molecular pathways. Taste learning and CTA are critical behaviors for survival, and the knowledge of the molecular bases involved in the acquisition, retention and extinction of CTA can help to understand the brain mechanisms of normal and altered taste learning. The aim of this review is to describe recent findings on the molecular mechanisms of taste learning, from the genetic, receptors, and intracellular and extracellular signaling biological levels. We can conclude that some molecular pathways and processes for the acquisition of taste learning and the formation of taste memories are well identified. However, new molecular, neurobiological and behavioral studies are needed to thoroughly elucidate the complexity of the taste system and the neural mechanisms of CTA.

  7. Representation of Coordination Mechanisms in IMS Learning Design to Support Group-based Learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Miao, Yongwu; Burgos, Daniel; Griffiths, David; Koper, Rob

    2007-01-01

    Miao, Y., Burgos, D., Griffiths, D., & Koper, R. (2008). Representation of Coordination Mechanisms in IMS Learning Design to Support Group-based Learning. In L. Lockyer, S. Bennet, S. Agostinho & B. Harper (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Learning Design and Learning Objects: Issues, Applications and

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  9. Neuronal mechanisms of learning in teleost fish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camilo Hurtado-Parrado

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Two predominant approaches for studying the neurobiology of learning in fish are reviewed: brain lesions and chemical stimulation. Habituation, sensitization, Pavlovian Conditioning, spatial behavior, and emotional learning are the specific processes analyzed. Regarding the effect of brain lesions, telencephalic ablations produced impairment of habituation learning; conversely,cerebellum lesions caused deficiencies in classical conditioning of eye-retraction and spatial learning (similar effects observed in mammals suggest that the functions of the cerebellum may have evolved early in vertebratehistory. Medium Pallium (MP areas have been identified as criticalfor emotional learning in fish. Furthermore, neurobehavioral functions of MP seem to be similar to the functions of the amygdala in mammals. Relating to neurochemical processes, NMDA receptor antagonists affected the acquisition of avoidance and fear conditioning in a dose-dependent manner. Alternatively, Nitric Oxide (NO and cyclic Guanosine Monophosphate (cGMP seem to be involved in the consolidation process of emotional learning.

  10. Virtual learning environment for interactive engagement with advanced quantum mechanics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mads Kock Pedersen

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A virtual learning environment can engage university students in the learning process in ways that the traditional lectures and lab formats cannot. We present our virtual learning environment StudentResearcher, which incorporates simulations, multiple-choice quizzes, video lectures, and gamification into a learning path for quantum mechanics at the advanced university level. StudentResearcher is built upon the experiences gathered from workshops with the citizen science game Quantum Moves at the high-school and university level, where the games were used extensively to illustrate the basic concepts of quantum mechanics. The first test of this new virtual learning environment was a 2014 course in advanced quantum mechanics at Aarhus University with 47 enrolled students. We found increased learning for the students who were more active on the platform independent of their previous performances.

  11. Virtual Learning Environment for Interactive Engagement with Advanced Quantum Mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedersen, Mads Kock; Skyum, Birk; Heck, Robert; Müller, Romain; Bason, Mark; Lieberoth, Andreas; Sherson, Jacob F.

    2016-06-01

    A virtual learning environment can engage university students in the learning process in ways that the traditional lectures and lab formats cannot. We present our virtual learning environment StudentResearcher, which incorporates simulations, multiple-choice quizzes, video lectures, and gamification into a learning path for quantum mechanics at the advanced university level. StudentResearcher is built upon the experiences gathered from workshops with the citizen science game Quantum Moves at the high-school and university level, where the games were used extensively to illustrate the basic concepts of quantum mechanics. The first test of this new virtual learning environment was a 2014 course in advanced quantum mechanics at Aarhus University with 47 enrolled students. We found increased learning for the students who were more active on the platform independent of their previous performances.

  12. Psychomotor skills learning under chronic hypoxia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouquet, C A; Gardette, B; Gortan, C; Abraini, J H

    1999-09-29

    Psychomotor deficits are a prominent feature in subjects exposed to hypoxia. Eight subjects exposed to chronic hypoxia during a simulated climb to 8848 m (Everest-Comex 97) were investigated using both a simple psychomotor task (Purdue pegboard) and two complex psychomotor tasks including a recognition task of either a color stimulus (high semantic level) or an abstract sign (low semantic level). Exposure to hypoxic stress mainly produced psychomotor skills learning deficits compared to control study, with greater deficits in the complex psychomotor task. The pattern of results suggests disruptions of motor strategic process. Our data further suggest that the relative strength of implicit or automatic memory processes associated with semantic information processing may increase when disturbances occur in brain functions.

  13. 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...

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Emotion blocks the path to learning under stereotype threat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangels, Jennifer A; Good, Catherine; Whiteman, Ronald C; Maniscalco, Brian; Dweck, Carol S

    2012-02-01

    Gender-based stereotypes undermine females' performance on challenging math tests, but how do they influence their ability to learn from the errors they make? Females under stereotype threat or non-threat were presented with accuracy feedback after each problem on a GRE-like math test, followed by an optional interactive tutorial that provided step-wise problem-solving instruction. Event-related potentials tracked the initial detection of the negative feedback following errors [feedback related negativity (FRN), P3a], as well as any subsequent sustained attention/arousal to that information [late positive potential (LPP)]. Learning was defined as success in applying tutorial information to correction of initial test errors on a surprise retest 24-h later. Under non-threat conditions, emotional responses to negative feedback did not curtail exploration of the tutor, and the amount of tutor exploration predicted learning success. In the stereotype threat condition, however, greater initial salience of the failure (FRN) predicted less exploration of the tutor, and sustained attention to the negative feedback (LPP) predicted poor learning from what was explored. Thus, under stereotype threat, emotional responses to negative feedback predicted both disengagement from learning and interference with learning attempts. We discuss the importance of emotion regulation in successful rebound from failure for stigmatized groups in stereotype-salient environments.

  17. 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.

  18. A new approach to teaching and learning mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westra, A. S.

    2006-10-01

    In this thesis a research project is described that took place from 2000 until 2004 in the Centre for Science and Mathematics Education in Utrecht. It involves a didactical research into the teaching and learning of an introduction to mechanics for fourth grade pre-university level students (Dutch: 4 VWO). Many people consider mechanics as an important part of physics, well worth teaching and learning, but also as a topic in which many difficulties in learning and understanding surface. The aims of the research are to contribute to a further understanding of these difficulties and to point in the direction of possible solutions.

  19. Post-learning molecular reactivation underlies taste memory consolidation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kioko eGuzman-Ramos

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available It is considered that memory consolidation is a progressive process that requires post-trial stabilization of the information. In this regard, it has been speculated that waves of receptors activation, expression of immediate early genes and replenishment of receptor subunit pools occur to induce functional or morphological changes to maintain the information for longer periods. In this paper, we will review data related to neuronal changes in the post-acquisition stage of taste aversion learning that could be involved in further stabilization of the memory trace. In order to achieve such stabilization, evidence suggests that the functional integrity of the insular cortex (IC and the amygdala (AMY is required. Particularly the increase of extracellular levels of glutamate and activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA receptors within the IC shows a main role in the consolidation process. Additionally the modulatory actions of the dopaminergic system in the IC appear to be involved in the mechanisms that lead to taste aversion memory consolidation through the activation of pathways related to enhancement of protein synthesis such as the Protein Kinase A pathway. In summary, we suggest that post-acquisition molecular and neuronal changes underlying memory consolidation are dependent on the interactions between the AMY and the IC.

  20. 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...

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Reinforcement learning in multidimensional environments relies on attention mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niv, Yael; Daniel, Reka; Geana, Andra; Gershman, Samuel J; Leong, Yuan Chang; Radulescu, Angela; Wilson, Robert C

    2015-05-27

    In recent years, ideas from the computational field of reinforcement learning have revolutionized the study of learning in the brain, famously providing new, precise theories of how dopamine affects learning in the basal ganglia. However, reinforcement learning algorithms are notorious for not scaling well to multidimensional environments, as is required for real-world learning. We hypothesized that the brain naturally reduces the dimensionality of real-world problems to only those dimensions that are relevant to predicting reward, and conducted an experiment to assess by what algorithms and with what neural mechanisms this "representation learning" process is realized in humans. Our results suggest that a bilateral attentional control network comprising the intraparietal sulcus, precuneus, and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex is involved in selecting what dimensions are relevant to the task at hand, effectively updating the task representation through trial and error. In this way, cortical attention mechanisms interact with learning in the basal ganglia to solve the "curse of dimensionality" in reinforcement learning. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/358145-13$15.00/0.

  5. Neurocomputational mechanisms of prosocial learning and links to empathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockwood, Patricia L; Apps, Matthew A J; Valton, Vincent; Viding, Essi; Roiser, Jonathan P

    2016-08-30

    Reinforcement learning theory powerfully characterizes how we learn to benefit ourselves. In this theory, prediction errors-the difference between a predicted and actual outcome of a choice-drive learning. However, we do not operate in a social vacuum. To behave prosocially we must learn the consequences of our actions for other people. Empathy, the ability to vicariously experience and understand the affect of others, is hypothesized to be a critical facilitator of prosocial behaviors, but the link between empathy and prosocial behavior is still unclear. During functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) participants chose between different stimuli that were probabilistically associated with rewards for themselves (self), another person (prosocial), or no one (control). Using computational modeling, we show that people can learn to obtain rewards for others but do so more slowly than when learning to obtain rewards for themselves. fMRI revealed that activity in a posterior portion of the subgenual anterior cingulate cortex/basal forebrain (sgACC) drives learning only when we are acting in a prosocial context and signals a prosocial prediction error conforming to classical principles of reinforcement learning theory. However, there is also substantial variability in the neural and behavioral efficiency of prosocial learning, which is predicted by trait empathy. More empathic people learn more quickly when benefitting others, and their sgACC response is the most selective for prosocial learning. We thus reveal a computational mechanism driving prosocial learning in humans. This framework could provide insights into atypical prosocial behavior in those with disorders of social cognition.

  6. 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)

  7. 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

  8. Inner-Learning Mechanism Based Control Scheme for Manipulator with Multitasking and Changing Load

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fangzheng Xue

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available With the rapid development of robot technology and its application, manipulators may face complex tasks and dynamic environments in the coming future, which leads to two challenges of control: multitasking and changing load. In this paper, a novel multicontroller strategy is presented to meet such challenges. The presented controller is composed of three parts: subcontrollers, inner-learning mechanism, and switching rules. Each subcontroller is designed with self-learning skills to fit the changing load under a special task. When a new task comes, switching rule reselects the most suitable subcontroller as the working controller to handle current task instead of the older one. Inner-learning mechanism makes the subcontrollers learn from the working controller when load changes so that the switching action causes smaller tracking error than the traditional switch controller. The results of the simulation experiments on two-degree manipulator show the proposed method effect.

  9. 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)

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Concurrence of rule- and similarity-based mechanisms in artificial grammar learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Opitz, Bertram; Hofmann, Juliane

    2015-03-01

    A current theoretical debate regards whether rule-based or similarity-based learning prevails during artificial grammar learning (AGL). Although the majority of findings are consistent with a similarity-based account of AGL it has been argued that these results were obtained only after limited exposure to study exemplars, and performance on subsequent grammaticality judgment tests has often been barely above chance level. In three experiments the conditions were investigated under which rule- and similarity-based learning could be applied. Participants were exposed to exemplars of an artificial grammar under different (implicit and explicit) learning instructions. The analysis of receiver operating characteristics (ROC) during a final grammaticality judgment test revealed that explicit but not implicit learning led to rule knowledge. It also demonstrated that this knowledge base is built up gradually while similarity knowledge governed the initial state of learning. Together these results indicate that rule- and similarity-based mechanisms concur during AGL. Moreover, it could be speculated that two different rule processes might operate in parallel; bottom-up learning via gradual rule extraction and top-down learning via rule testing. Crucially, the latter is facilitated by performance feedback that encourages explicit hypothesis testing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. 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.

  17. Emotion blocks the path to learning under stereotype threat

    OpenAIRE

    Mangels, Jennifer A.; Good, Catherine; Whiteman, Ronald C.; Maniscalco, Brian; Dweck, Carol S.

    2011-01-01

    Gender-based stereotypes undermine females’ performance on challenging math tests, but how do they influence their ability to learn from the errors they make? Females under stereotype threat or non-threat were presented with accuracy feedback after each problem on a GRE-like math test, followed by an optional interactive tutorial that provided step-wise problem-solving instruction. Event-related potentials tracked the initial detection of the negative feedback following errors [feedback relat...

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. A new approach to teaching and learning mechanics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Westra, A.S.

    2006-01-01

    In this thesis a research project is described that took place from 2000 until 2004 in the Centre for Science and Mathematics Education in Utrecht. It involves a didactical research into the teaching and learning of an introduction to mechanics for fourth grade pre-university level students (Dutch:

  2. Evaluating the Learning Process of Mechanical CAD Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamade, R. F.; Artail, H. A.; Jaber, M. Y.

    2007-01-01

    There is little theoretical or experimental research on how beginner-level trainees learn CAD skills in formal training sessions. This work presents findings on how trainees develop their skills in utilizing a solid mechanical CAD tool (Pro/Engineer version 2000i[squared] and later version Wildfire). Exercises at the beginner and intermediate…

  3. 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.

  4. Learning and memory under stress: implications for the classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel, Susanne; Schwabe, Lars

    2016-06-01

    Exams, tight deadlines and interpersonal conflicts are just a few examples of the many events that may result in high levels of stress in both students and teachers. Research over the past two decades identified stress and the hormones and neurotransmitters released during and after a stressful event as major modulators of human learning and memory processes, with critical implications for educational contexts. While stress around the time of learning is thought to enhance memory formation, thus leading to robust memories, stress markedly impairs memory retrieval, bearing, for instance, the risk of underachieving at exams. Recent evidence further indicates that stress may hamper the updating of memories in the light of new information and induce a shift from a flexible, 'cognitive' form of learning towards rather rigid, 'habit'-like behaviour. Together, these stress-induced changes may explain some of the difficulties of learning and remembering under stress in the classroom. Taking these insights from psychology and neuroscience into account could bear the potential to facilitate processes of education for both students and teachers.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Social cues modulate the representations underlying cross-situational learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDonald, Kyle; Yurovsky, Daniel; Frank, Michael C

    2017-05-01

    Because children hear language in environments that contain many things to talk about, learning the meaning of even the simplest word requires making inferences under uncertainty. A cross-situational statistical learner can aggregate across naming events to form stable word-referent mappings, but this approach neglects an important source of information that can reduce referential uncertainty: social cues from speakers (e.g., eye gaze). In four large-scale experiments with adults, we tested the effects of varying referential uncertainty in cross-situational word learning using social cues. Social cues shifted learners away from tracking multiple hypotheses and towards storing only a single hypothesis (Experiments 1 and 2). In addition, learners were sensitive to graded changes in the strength of a social cue, and when it became less reliable, they were more likely to store multiple hypotheses (Experiment 3). Finally, learners stored fewer word-referent mappings in the presence of a social cue even when given the opportunity to visually inspect the objects for the same amount of time (Experiment 4). Taken together, our data suggest that the representations underlying cross-situational word learning of concrete object labels are quite flexible: In conditions of greater uncertainty, learners store a broader range of information. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Practice under pressure: what neurology can learn from anaesthesia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stacey, Mark

    2017-12-01

    Performing a stressful task under pressure is challenging. Strategies to optimise our training must focus on learning a skill correctly, and then practising that skill sufficiently to avoid compromising that performance in the cauldron of the clinical environment. This article discusses ways of doing things better, based on practical strategies employed in anaesthesia, but developed primarily in elite sport and the military. It involves taking a skill, practising it until it becomes a habit and over time making it part of normal behaviour. The philosophy is simple (but difficult to apply): control what you can control and always do your best. The best summary of this strategy is: learn it right, practise it right, perform it right. © Article author(s) (or their employer(s) unless otherwise stated in the text of the article) 2017. All rights reserved. No commercial use is permitted unless otherwise expressly granted.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Implementation of Simulation Based-Concept Attainment Method to Increase Interest Learning of Engineering Mechanics Topic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sultan, A. Z.; Hamzah, N.; Rusdi, M.

    2018-01-01

    The implementation of concept attainment method based on simulation was used to increase student’s interest in the subjects Engineering of Mechanics in second semester of academic year 2016/2017 in Manufacturing Engineering Program, Department of Mechanical PNUP. The result of the implementation of this learning method shows that there is an increase in the students’ learning interest towards the lecture material which is summarized in the form of interactive simulation CDs and teaching materials in the form of printed books and electronic books. From the implementation of achievement method of this simulation based concept, it is noted that the increase of student participation in the presentation and discussion as well as the deposit of individual assignment of significant student. With the implementation of this method of learning the average student participation reached 89%, which before the application of this learning method only reaches an average of 76%. And also with previous learning method, for exam achievement of A-grade under 5% and D-grade above 8%. After the implementation of the new learning method (simulation based-concept attainment method) the achievement of Agrade has reached more than 30% and D-grade below 1%.

  20. The Application of Problem-Based Learning in Mechanical Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putra, Z. A.; Dewi, M.

    2018-02-01

    The course of Technology and Material Testing prepare students with the ability to do a variety of material testing in the study of mechanical engineering. Students find it difficult to understand the materials to make them unable to carry out the material testing in accordance with the purpose of study. This happens because they knowledge is not adequately supported by the competence to find and construct learning experience. In this study, quasy experiment research method with pre-post-test with control group design was used. The subjects of the study were students divided in two groups; control and experiment with twenty-two students in each group. Study result: their grades showed no difference in between the pre-test or post-test in control group, but the difference in grade existed between the pre-test and post-test in experiment group. Yet, there is no significant difference in the study result on both groups. The researcher recommend that it is necessary to develop Problem-Based Learning that suits need analysis on D3 Program for Mechanical Engineering Department at the State University of Padang, to ensure the compatibility between Model of Study and problems and need. This study aims to analyze how Problem-Based Learning effects on the course of Technology and Material Testing for the students of D3 Program of Mechanical Engineering of the State University of Padang.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Molecular mechanisms underlying memory consolidation of taste information in the cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shunit eGal-Ben-Ari

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The senses of taste and odor are both chemical senses. However, whereas an organism can detect an odor at a relatively long distance from its source, taste serves as the ultimate proximate gatekeeper of food intake: it helps in avoiding poisons and consuming beneficial substances. The automatic reaction to a given taste has been developed during evolution and is well adapted to conditions that may occur with high probability during the lifetime of an organism. However, in addition to this automatic reaction, animals can learn and remember tastes, together with their positive or negative values, with high precision and in light of minimal experience. This ability of mammalians to learn and remember tastes has been studied extensively in rodents through application of reasonably simple and well defined behavioral paradigms. The learning process follows a temporal continuum similar to those of other memories: acquisition, consolidation, retrieval, relearning, and reconsolidation. Moreover, inhibiting protein synthesis in the gustatory cortex specifically affects the consolidation phase of taste memory, i.e., the transformation of short- to long-term memory, in keeping with the general biochemical definition of memory consolidation. This review aims to present a general background of taste learning, and to focus on recent findings regarding the molecular mechanisms underlying taste memory consolidation in the gustatory cortex. Specifically, the role of neurotransmitters, meuromodulators, immediate early genes, and translation regulation are addressed.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Interpreting Students’ Perceptions in Fluid Mechanics Learning Outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Filomena SOARES

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study is to analyse the impact of introducing a practical work in the learning process of the Fluid Transport Systems course in Chemical Engineering degree. The students, in groups of two or three elements, were free to choose the application case in order to develop the practical work proposed by the responsible teachers. The students selected a centrifugal pump to supply water to houses or buildings and designed the piping system. The practical work was evaluated through the written report. The students’ perceptions were analysed through a questionnaire. The learning outcomes were also considered in order to understand how the fluid mechanics concepts were acquired. In the teachers’ point of view the teamwork should enable the development of students’ soft skills and competencies, promoting the ability to integrate and work in teams. The students changed their learning processing and perception becoming more reflective and less accommodative, forcing them to think critically and share opinions. Regarding the Fluid Mechanics assessment, the practical work increased, in average, the final grade at least one value.

  16. Pavlovian reward learning underlies value driven attentional capture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bucker, Berno; Theeuwes, Jan

    2017-02-01

    Recent evidence shows that distractors that signal high compared to low reward availability elicit stronger attentional capture, even when this is detrimental for task-performance. This suggests that simply correlating stimuli with reward administration, rather than their instrumental relationship with obtaining reward, produces value-driven attentional capture. However, in previous studies, reward delivery was never response independent, as only correct responses were rewarded, nor was it completely task-irrelevant, as the distractor signaled the magnitude of reward that could be earned on that trial. In two experiments, we ensured that associative reward learning was completely response independent by letting participants perform a task at fixation, while high and low rewards were automatically administered following the presentation of task-irrelevant colored stimuli in the periphery (Experiment 1) or at fixation (Experiment 2). In a following non-reward test phase, using the additional singleton paradigm, the previously reward signaling stimuli were presented as distractors to assess truly task-irrelevant value driven attentional capture. The results showed that high compared to low reward-value associated distractors impaired performance, and thus captured attention more strongly. This suggests that genuine Pavlovian conditioning of stimulus-reward contingencies is sufficient to obtain value-driven attentional capture. Furthermore, value-driven attentional capture can occur following associative reward learning of temporally and spatially task-irrelevant distractors that signal the magnitude of available reward (Experiment 1), and is independent of training spatial shifts of attention towards the reward signaling stimuli (Experiment 2). This confirms and strengthens the idea that Pavlovian reward learning underlies value driven attentional capture.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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).

  5. Local Feature Learning for Face Recognition under Varying Poses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Duan, Xiaodong; Tan, Zheng-Hua

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we present a local feature learning method for face recognition to deal with varying poses. As opposed to the commonly used approaches of recovering frontal face images from profile views, the proposed method extracts the subject related part from a local feature by removing the pose...... related part in it on the basis of a pose feature. The method has a closed-form solution, hence being time efficient. For performance evaluation, cross pose face recognition experiments are conducted on two public face recognition databases FERET and FEI. The proposed method shows a significant...... recognition improvement under varying poses over general local feature approaches and outperforms or is comparable with related state-of-the-art pose invariant face recognition approaches. Copyright ©2015 by IEEE....

  6. Latent memory facilitates relearning through molecular signaling mechanisms that are distinct from original learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menges, Steven A; Riepe, Joshua R; Philips, Gary T

    2015-09-01

    A highly conserved feature of memory is that it can exist in a latent, non-expressed state which is revealed during subsequent learning by its ability to significantly facilitate (savings) or inhibit (latent inhibition) subsequent memory formation. Despite the ubiquitous nature of latent memory, the mechanistic nature of the latent memory trace and its ability to influence subsequent learning remains unclear. The model organism Aplysia californica provides the unique opportunity to make strong links between behavior and underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms. Using Aplysia, we have studied the mechanisms of savings due to latent memory for a prior, forgotten experience. We previously reported savings in the induction of three distinct temporal domains of memory: short-term (10min), intermediate-term (2h) and long-term (24h). Here we report that savings memory formation utilizes molecular signaling pathways that are distinct from original learning: whereas the induction of both original intermediate- and long-term memory in naïve animals requires mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) activation and ongoing protein synthesis, 2h savings memory is not disrupted by inhibitors of MAPK or protein synthesis, and 24h savings memory is not dependent on MAPK activation. Collectively, these findings reveal that during forgetting, latent memory for the original experience can facilitate relearning through molecular signaling mechanisms that are distinct from original learning. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Internal force corrections with machine learning for quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Jingheng; Shen, Lin; Yang, Weitao

    2017-10-01

    Ab initio quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) molecular dynamics simulation is a useful tool to calculate thermodynamic properties such as potential of mean force for chemical reactions but intensely time consuming. In this paper, we developed a new method using the internal force correction for low-level semiempirical QM/MM molecular dynamics samplings with a predefined reaction coordinate. As a correction term, the internal force was predicted with a machine learning scheme, which provides a sophisticated force field, and added to the atomic forces on the reaction coordinate related atoms at each integration step. We applied this method to two reactions in aqueous solution and reproduced potentials of mean force at the ab initio QM/MM level. The saving in computational cost is about 2 orders of magnitude. The present work reveals great potentials for machine learning in QM/MM simulations to study complex chemical processes.

  8. Internal force corrections with machine learning for quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Jingheng; Shen, Lin; Yang, Weitao

    2017-10-28

    Ab initio quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics (QM/MM) molecular dynamics simulation is a useful tool to calculate thermodynamic properties such as potential of mean force for chemical reactions but intensely time consuming. In this paper, we developed a new method using the internal force correction for low-level semiempirical QM/MM molecular dynamics samplings with a predefined reaction coordinate. As a correction term, the internal force was predicted with a machine learning scheme, which provides a sophisticated force field, and added to the atomic forces on the reaction coordinate related atoms at each integration step. We applied this method to two reactions in aqueous solution and reproduced potentials of mean force at the ab initio QM/MM level. The saving in computational cost is about 2 orders of magnitude. The present work reveals great potentials for machine learning in QM/MM simulations to study complex chemical processes.

  9. 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.

  10. [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.

  11. Deciphering Molecular Mechanism Underlying Hypolipidemic Activity of Echinocystic Acid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  12. 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.

  13. Fatigue life prediction of mechanical structures under stochastic loading

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Neuronal mechanisms of motor learning are age dependent

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berghuis, Kelly M. M.; De Rond, Veerle; Zijdewind, Inge; Koch, Giacomo; Veldman, Menno P.; Hortobagyi, Tibor

    2016-01-01

    There is controversy whether age-related neuroanatomical and neurophysiological changes in the central nervous system affect healthy old adults' abilities to acquire and retain motor skills. We examined the effects of age on motor skill acquisition and retention and potential underlying mechanisms

  17. From inverse problems to learning: a Statistical Mechanics approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldassi, Carlo; Gerace, Federica; Saglietti, Luca; Zecchina, Riccardo

    2018-01-01

    We present a brief introduction to the statistical mechanics approaches for the study of inverse problems in data science. We then provide concrete new results on inferring couplings from sampled configurations in systems characterized by an extensive number of stable attractors in the low temperature regime. We also show how these result are connected to the problem of learning with realistic weak signals in computational neuroscience. Our techniques and algorithms rely on advanced mean-field methods developed in the context of disordered systems.

  18. Mixed-Handedness Advantages in Episodic Memory Obtained under Conditions of Intentional Learning Extend to Incidental Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christman, Stephen D.; Butler, Michael

    2011-01-01

    The existence of handedness differences in the retrieval of episodic memories is well-documented, but virtually all have been obtained under conditions of intentional learning. Two experiments are reported that extend the presence of such handedness differences to memory retrieval under conditions of incidental learning. Experiment 1 used Craik…

  19. Learning outdoors: male lizards show flexible spatial learning under semi-natural conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, Daniel W A; Carazo, Pau; Whiting, Martin J

    2012-12-23

    Spatial cognition is predicted to be a fundamental component of fitness in many lizard species, and yet some studies suggest that it is relatively slow and inflexible. However, such claims are based on work conducted using experimental designs or in artificial contexts that may underestimate their cognitive abilities. We used a biologically realistic experimental procedure (using simulated predatory attacks) to study spatial learning and its flexibility in the lizard Eulamprus quoyii in semi-natural outdoor enclosures under similar conditions to those experienced by lizards in the wild. To evaluate the flexibility of spatial learning, we conducted a reversal spatial-learning task in which positive and negative reinforcements of learnt spatial stimuli were switched. Nineteen (32%) male lizards learnt both tasks within 10 days (spatial task mean: 8.16 ± 0.69 (s.e.) and reversal spatial task mean: 10.74 ± 0.98 (s.e.) trials). We demonstrate that E. quoyii are capable of flexible spatial learning and suggest that future studies focus on a range of lizard species which differ in phylogeny and/or ecology, using biologically relevant cognitive tasks, in an effort to bridge the cognitive divide between ecto- and endotherms.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. Antioxidant Property of Jobelyn as the Possible Mechanism Underlying

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  4. 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

  5. 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)

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Theoretical Perspectives Underlying the Application of Cooperative Learning in Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tran, Van Dat

    2013-01-01

    Cooperative learning has been the centre of worldwide attention because it has been shown to have strong effects on student learning, as well as other positive outcomes. Although the academic, social, affective and psychological outcomes of students taught by cooperative learning are more positive compared with students taught by the traditional…

  9. A hypothesis on a role of oxytocin in the social mechanisms of speech and vocal learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theofanopoulou, Constantina; Boeckx, Cedric; Jarvis, Erich D

    2017-08-30

    Language acquisition in humans and song learning in songbirds naturally happen as a social learning experience, providing an excellent opportunity to reveal social motivation and reward mechanisms that boost sensorimotor learning. Our knowledge about the molecules and circuits that control these social mechanisms for vocal learning and language is limited. Here we propose a hypothesis of a role for oxytocin (OT) in the social motivation and evolution of vocal learning and language. Building upon existing evidence, we suggest specific neural pathways and mechanisms through which OT might modulate vocal learning circuits in specific developmental stages. © 2017 The Authors.

  10. Learner Characteristic Based Learning Effort Curve Mode: The Core Mechanism on Developing Personalized Adaptive E-Learning Platform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Pi-Shan

    2012-01-01

    This study aims to develop the core mechanism for realizing the development of personalized adaptive e-learning platform, which is based on the previous learning effort curve research and takes into account the learner characteristics of learning style and self-efficacy. 125 university students from Taiwan are classified into 16 groups according…

  11. 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

  12. Learning to control arm stiffness under static conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darainy, Mohammad; Malfait, Nicole; Gribble, Paul L; Towhidkhah, Farzad; Ostry, David J

    2004-12-01

    We used a robotic device to test the idea that impedance control involves a process of learning or adaptation that is acquired over time and permits the voluntary control of the pattern of stiffness at the hand. The tests were conducted in statics. Subjects were trained over the course of 3 successive days to resist the effects of one of three different kinds of mechanical loads: single axis loads acting in the lateral direction, single axis loads acting in the forward/backward direction, and isotropic loads that perturbed the limb in eight directions about a circle. We found that subjects in contact with single axis loads voluntarily modified their hand stiffness orientation such that changes to the direction of maximum stiffness mirrored the direction of applied load. In the case of isotropic loads, a uniform increase in endpoint stiffness was observed. Using a physiologically realistic model of two-joint arm movement, the experimentally determined pattern of impedance change could be replicated by assuming that coactivation of elbow and double joint muscles was independent of coactivation of muscles at the shoulder. Moreover, using this pattern of coactivation control we were able to replicate an asymmetric pattern of rotation of the stiffness ellipse that was observed empirically. These findings are consistent with the idea that arm stiffness is controlled through the use of at least two independent co-contraction commands.

  13. An agent-based simulation of power generation company behavior in electricity markets under different market-clearing mechanisms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aliabadi, Danial Esmaeili; Kaya, Murat; Şahin, Güvenç

    2017-01-01

    Deregulated electricity markets are expected to provide affordable electricity for consumers through promoting competition. Yet, the results do not always fulfill the expectations. The regulator's market-clearing mechanism is a strategic choice that may affect the level of competition in the market. We conceive of the market-clearing mechanism as composed of two components: pricing rules and rationing policies. We investigate the strategic behavior of power generation companies under different market-clearing mechanisms using an agent-based simulation model which integrates a game-theoretical understanding of the auction mechanism in the electricity market and generation companies' learning mechanism. Results of our simulation experiments are presented using various case studies representing different market settings. The market in simulations is observed to converge to a Nash equilibrium of the stage game or to a similar state under most parameter combinations. Compared to pay-as-bid pricing, bid prices are closer to marginal costs on average under uniform pricing while GenCos' total profit is also higher. The random rationing policy of the ISO turns out to be more successful in achieving lower bid prices and lower GenCo profits. In minimizing GenCos' total profit, a combination of pay-as-bid pricing rule and random rationing policy is observed to be the most promising. - Highlights: • An agent-based simulation of generation company behavior in electricity markets is developed. • Learning dynamics of companies is modeled with an extended Q-learning algorithm. • Different market clearing mechanisms of the regulator are compared. • Convergence to Nash equilibria is analyzed under different cases. • The level of competition in the market is studied.

  14. 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…

  15. 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

  16. [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

  17. 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.

  18. The local enhancement conundrum: in search of the adaptive value of a social learning mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arbilly, Michal; Laland, Kevin N

    2014-02-01

    Social learning mechanisms are widely thought to vary in their degree of complexity as well as in their prevalence in the natural world. While learning the properties of a stimulus that generalize to similar stimuli at other locations (stimulus enhancement) prima facie appears more useful to an animal than learning about a specific stimulus at a specific location (local enhancement), empirical evidence suggests that the latter is much more widespread in nature. Simulating populations engaged in a producer-scrounger game, we sought to deploy mathematical models to identify the adaptive benefits of reliance on local enhancement and/or stimulus enhancement, and the alternative conditions favoring their evolution. Surprisingly, we found that while stimulus enhancement readily evolves, local enhancement is advantageous only under highly restricted conditions: when generalization of information was made unreliable or when error in social learning was high. Our results generate a conundrum over how seemingly conflicting empirical and theoretical findings can be reconciled. Perhaps the prevalence of local enhancement in nature is due to stimulus enhancement costs independent of the learning task itself (e.g. predation risk), perhaps natural habitats are often characterized by unreliable yet highly rewarding payoffs, or perhaps local enhancement occurs less frequently, and stimulus enhancement more frequently, than widely believed. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Acquisition of phonological variables of a Flemish dialect by children raised in Standard Dutch : some considerations on the learning mechanisms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rys, Kathy; Keuleers, Emmanuel; Daelemans, Walter; Gillis, Steven; De Vogelaer, Gunther; Katerbow, Matthias

    2017-01-01

    This study investigates the learning mechanisms underlying the acquisition of a dialect as a second language. We focus on the acquisition of phonological features of a Flemish dialect by children with Standard Dutch or a regional variety of Dutch as their first language. Data were gathered by means

  20. 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.

  1. COOPERATIVE LEARNING AND TEACHING OF GEOGRAPHY UNDER THE EHEA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana María Luque Gil

    Full Text Available The university is in the process of change by the new society of knowledge that emerged with globalization. The working methods of teachers must adapt to new needs of the European Higher Education Area. The article has the following objectives clarify what is cooperative learning, present the advantages and disadvantages of cooperative learning, learn the main techniques and present the results of an innovative educational project which has experimented with these techniques in two courses geography; methodology values the opinion of students and teachers on cooperative learning. The results are clarifying and highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of these techniques.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Learning to learn - intrinsic plasticity as a metaplasticity mechanism for memory formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sehgal, Megha; Song, Chenghui; Ehlers, Vanessa L; Moyer, James R

    2013-10-01

    "Use it or lose it" is a popular adage often associated with use-dependent enhancement of cognitive abilities. Much research has focused on understanding exactly how the brain changes as a function of experience. Such experience-dependent plasticity involves both structural and functional alterations that contribute to adaptive behaviors, such as learning and memory, as well as maladaptive behaviors, including anxiety disorders, phobias, and posttraumatic stress disorder. With the advancing age of our population, understanding how use-dependent plasticity changes across the lifespan may also help to promote healthy brain aging. A common misconception is that such experience-dependent plasticity (e.g., associative learning) is synonymous with synaptic plasticity. Other forms of plasticity also play a critical role in shaping adaptive changes within the nervous system, including intrinsic plasticity - a change in the intrinsic excitability of a neuron. Intrinsic plasticity can result from a change in the number, distribution or activity of various ion channels located throughout the neuron. Here, we review evidence that intrinsic plasticity is an important and evolutionarily conserved neural correlate of learning. Intrinsic plasticity acts as a metaplasticity mechanism by lowering the threshold for synaptic changes. Thus, learning-related intrinsic changes can facilitate future synaptic plasticity and learning. Such intrinsic changes can impact the allocation of a memory trace within a brain structure, and when compromised, can contribute to cognitive decline during the aging process. This unique role of intrinsic excitability can provide insight into how memories are formed and, more interestingly, how neurons that participate in a memory trace are selected. Most importantly, modulation of intrinsic excitability can allow for regulation of learning ability - this can prevent or provide treatment for cognitive decline not only in patients with clinical disorders but

  5. 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.

  6. Stochastic upscaling in solid mechanics: An excercise in machine learning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koutsourelakis, P.S.

    2007-01-01

    This paper presents a consistent theoretical and computational framework for upscaling in random microstructures. We adopt an information theoretic approach in order to quantify the informational content of the microstructural details and find ways to condense it while assessing quantitatively the approximation introduced. In particular, we substitute the high-dimensional microscale description by a lower-dimensional representation corresponding for example to an equivalent homogeneous medium. The probabilistic characteristics of the latter are determined by minimizing the distortion between actual macroscale predictions and the predictions made using the coarse model. A machine learning framework is essentially adopted in which a vector quantizer is trained using data generated computationally or collected experimentally. Several parallels and differences with similar problems in source coding theory are pointed out and an efficient computational tool is employed. Various applications in linear and non-linear problems in solid mechanics are examined

  7. Potentials of Industrie 4.0 and Machine Learning for Mechanical Joining

    OpenAIRE

    Jäckel, Mathias

    2017-01-01

    -Sensitivity analysis of the influence of component properties and joining parameters on the joining result for self-pierce riveting -Possibilities to link mechanical joining technologies with the automotive process chain for quality and flexibility improvements -Potential of using machine learning to reduce automotive product development cycles in relation to mechanical joining -Datamining for machine learning at mechanical joining

  8. Lifelong Learning: Foundational Models, Underlying Assumptions and Critiques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regmi, Kapil Dev

    2015-01-01

    Lifelong learning has become a catchword in almost all countries because of its growing influence on education policies in the globalised world. In the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the European Union (EU), the promotion of lifelong learning has been a strategy to speed up economic growth and become competitive.…

  9. Virtual Learning Environment for Interactive Engagement with Advanced Quantum Mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pedersen, Mads Kock; Skyum, Birk; Heck, Robert; Müller, Romain; Bason, Mark; Lieberoth, Andreas; Sherson, Jacob F.

    2016-01-01

    A virtual learning environment can engage university students in the learning process in ways that the traditional lectures and lab formats cannot. We present our virtual learning environment "StudentResearcher," which incorporates simulations, multiple-choice quizzes, video lectures, and gamification into a learning path for quantum…

  10. 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

  11. Heightened reward learning under stress in generalized anxiety disorder: a predictor of depression resistance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Bethany H; Rottenberg, Jonathan

    2015-02-01

    Stress-induced anhedonia is associated with depression vulnerability (Bogdan & Pizzagalli, 2006). We investigated stress-induced deficits in reward learning in a depression-vulnerable group with analogue generalized anxiety disorder (GAD, n = 34), and never-depressed healthy controls (n = 41). Utilizing a computerized signal detection task, reward learning was assessed under stressor and neutral conditions. Controls displayed intact reward learning in the neutral condition, and the expected stress-induced blunting. The GAD group as a whole also showed intact reward learning in the neutral condition. When GAD subjects were analyzed as a function of prior depression history, never-depressed GAD subjects showed heightened reward learning in the stressor condition. Better reward learning under stress among GAD subjects predicted lower depression symptoms 1 month later. Robust reward learning under stress may indicate depression resistance among anxious individuals. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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...

  15. 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.

  16. The behavioral and neural mechanisms underlying the tracking of expertise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boorman, Erie D; O'Doherty, John P; Adolphs, Ralph; Rangel, Antonio

    2013-12-18

    Evaluating the abilities of others is fundamental for successful economic and social behavior. We investigated the computational and neurobiological basis of ability tracking by designing an fMRI task that required participants to use and update estimates of both people and algorithms' expertise through observation of their predictions. Behaviorally, we find a model-based algorithm characterized subject predictions better than several alternative models. Notably, when the agent's prediction was concordant rather than discordant with the subject's own likely prediction, participants credited people more than algorithms for correct predictions and penalized them less for incorrect predictions. Neurally, many components of the mentalizing network-medial prefrontal cortex, anterior cingulate gyrus, temporoparietal junction, and precuneus-represented or updated expertise beliefs about both people and algorithms. Moreover, activity in lateral orbitofrontal and medial prefrontal cortex reflected behavioral differences in learning about people and algorithms. These findings provide basic insights into the neural basis of social learning. Copyright © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Studies of Neuronal Gene Regulation Controlling the Molecular Mechanisms Underlying Neural Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fukuchi, Mamoru

    2017-01-01

    The regulation of the development and function of the nervous system is not preprogramed but responds to environmental stimuli to change neural development and function flexibly. This neural plasticity is a characteristic property of the nervous system. For example, strong synaptic activation evoked by environmental stimuli leads to changes in synaptic functions (known as synaptic plasticity). Long-lasting synaptic plasticity is one of the molecular mechanisms underlying long-term learning and memory. Since discovering the role of the transcription factor cAMP-response element-binding protein in learning and memory, it has been widely accepted that gene regulation in neurons contributes to long-lasting changes in neural functions. However, it remains unclear how synaptic activation is converted into gene regulation that results in long-lasting neural functions like long-term memory. We continue to address this question. This review introduces our recent findings on the gene regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor and discusses how regulation of the gene participates in long-lasting changes in neural functions.

  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. B-learning under examination: Advantages, disadvantages, and opinions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Bemposta Rosende

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, learning management systems (LMS have become very popular in almost all traditional universities, generating a new learning strategy approach, mixing elements from both traditional and online learning: the blended learning or b-learning. How these new environments influence teaching activities and learning processes are the main topic of this paper.  References about this subject are also analyzed, enriching them with the expertise and opinion of authors and other teachers. Finally, the students’ point of view is presented, through the results of a survey of Polytechnic School students at Universidad Europea de Madrid. ------ El b-learning a examen: Ventajas, desventajas y opiniones Resumen Desde hace ya varios años, han proliferado los espacios virtuales de enseñanza en la práctica totalidad de centros universitarios de enseñanza presencial, dando origen a una nueva modalidad de enseñanza que recoge elementos de la enseñanza presencial y de la enseñanza en línea: el blended learning o b-learning. La posible influencia de estos espacios en la actividad docente y en el proceso de aprendizaje es el objeto de este artículo. Se analizan referencias sobre el tema, enriqueciéndolas con la opinión y experiencia de los autores y su entorno laboral concreto. Finalmente, se presenta la opinión de los alumnos a través de los resultados de una encuesta realizada a un grupo de estudiantes de la Escuela Politécnica de la Universidad Europea de Madrid. DOI: 10.18870/hlrc.v1i1.36 PDF document contains both the original in Spanish and an English translation.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. Human operant learning under concurrent reinforcement of response variability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maes, J.H.R.; Goot, M.H. van der

    2006-01-01

    This study asked whether the concurrent reinforcement of behavioral variability facilitates learning to emit a difficult target response. Sixty students repeatedly pressed sequences of keys, with an originally infrequently occurring target sequence consistently being followed by positive feedback.

  6. Bifurcation routes to volatility clustering under evolutionary learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gaunersdorfer, A.; Hommes, C.H.; Wagener, F.O.O.

    2008-01-01

    A simple asset pricing model with two types of boundedly rational traders, fundamentalists and chartists, is studied. Fractions of trader types change over time according to evolutionary learning, with chartists conditioning their forecasting rule upon deviations from a benchmark fundamental.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. [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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Problems in classical and quantum mechanics extracting the underlying concepts

    CERN Document Server

    Kelley, J Daniel

    2017-01-01

    This book is a collection of problems intended to aid students in their graduate courses in physics and in preparing for the PhD qualifying exam. Thus, the included problems are of the type that could be on a qualifying exam or are problems that are meant to elucidate a principle that is important for the exam. Unlike other compilations of problems, the problems in this text are placed in the broader context of the subject. The goal of the book is to develop the problem solving skills of the reader to insure a complete understanding of the physics. Problems and solutions are presented in detail, and, additionally, their significance is discussed within the context of the physical principle(s) that they illustrate. The solution of the problem is only the beginning of the learning process--it is in manipulating the solution and changing the parameters that a great deal of insight can be gleaned. This technique is referred to by the authors as "massaging the problem," and it is a technique that the authors have ...

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Perceptual learning of speech under optimal and adverse conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xujin; Samuel, Arthur G

    2014-02-01

    Humans have a remarkable ability to understand spoken language despite the large amount of variability in speech. Previous research has shown that listeners can use lexical information to guide their interpretation of atypical sounds in speech (Norris, McQueen, & Cutler, 2003). This kind of lexically induced perceptual learning enables people to adjust to the variations in utterances due to talker-specific characteristics, such as individual identity and dialect. The current study investigated perceptual learning in two optimal conditions: conversational speech (Experiment 1) versus clear speech (Experiment 2), and three adverse conditions: noise (Experiment 3a) versus two cognitive loads (Experiments 4a and 4b). Perceptual learning occurred in the two optimal conditions and in the two cognitive load conditions, but not in the noise condition. Furthermore, perceptual learning occurred only in the first of two sessions for each participant, and only for atypical /s/ sounds and not for atypical /f/ sounds. This pattern of learning and nonlearning reflects a balance between flexibility and stability that the speech system must have to deal with speech variability in the diverse conditions that speech is encountered. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  3. Using Formal Game Design Methods to Embed Learning Outcomes into Game Mechanics and Avoid Emergent Behaviour

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grey, Simon; Grey, David; Gordon, Neil; Purdy, Jon

    2017-01-01

    This paper offers an approach to designing game-based learning experiences inspired by the Mechanics-Dynamics-Aesthetics (MDA) model (Hunicke et al., 2004) and the elemental tetrad model (Schell, 2008) for game design. A case for game based learning as an active and social learning experience is presented including arguments from both teachers and…

  4. The Meaning and Measure of Organizational Learning Mechanisms in Secondary Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schechter, Chen; Atarchi, Lilach

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Organizational learning has been conceptualized as a critical component for school effectiveness. This study explored organizational learning in schools through the conceptual framework of "organizational learning mechanisms" (OLMs) and developed a measure of OLMs at the secondary school level. Research Design: Exploratory and…

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. An Investigation Regarding Experimental Learning for Creative Manufacturing under

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubota, Hiroshi; Song, Sang-J.

    To overcome an educational crisis, experimental learning in creative manufacturing in reference to cross-curricular engineering education has been undertaken. To educate students in terms of not only information and management technology, but also in terms of theory and practice, experimental learning procedures from product planning to trial evaluation have implemented. Objectives and fundamental hypotheses were also established for realizing effective education. The verification of these hypotheses and the attainment of these objectives were evaluated by the use of experimental reports and student surveys gathered for three years. As a natural consequence, successful requirements for experimental learning in creative manufacturing were derived. Moreover this paper postulated that failure factors actually should be considered much more seriously than successful factors for effective education.

  8. College Radio as a Mechanism for Participatory Learning: Exploring the Scope for Online Radio Based Learning among Undergraduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibrahim, Bahaeldin; Mishra, Naveen

    2016-01-01

    This paper explores the prospects of online college radio at Sur College of Applied Sciences, its need among students and the possible scope of its contributions to student learning, engagement and community service. It explores the method of developing a holistic mechanism to capture the possibilities of maximizing learning experience by…

  9. Effects of the Badge Mechanism on Self-Efficacy and Learning Performance in a Game-Based English Learning Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Jie Chi; Quadir, Benazir; Chen, Nian-Shing

    2016-01-01

    A growing number of studies have been conducted on digital game-based learning (DGBL). However, there has been a lack of attention paid to individuals' self-efficacy and learning performance in the implementation of DGBL. This study therefore investigated how the badge mechanism in DGBL enhanced users' self-efficacy in the subject domain of…

  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. Assessing learning outcomes in middle-division classical mechanics: The Colorado Classical Mechanics and Math Methods Instrument

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos D. Caballero

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Reliable and validated assessments of introductory physics have been instrumental in driving curricular and pedagogical reforms that lead to improved student learning. As part of an effort to systematically improve our sophomore-level classical mechanics and math methods course (CM 1 at CU Boulder, we have developed a tool to assess student learning of CM 1 concepts in the upper division. The Colorado Classical Mechanics and Math Methods Instrument (CCMI builds on faculty consensus learning goals and systematic observations of student difficulties. The result is a 9-question open-ended post test that probes student learning in the first half of a two-semester classical mechanics and math methods sequence. In this paper, we describe the design and development of this instrument, its validation, and measurements made in classes at CU Boulder and elsewhere.

  18. Assessing learning outcomes in middle-division classical mechanics: The Colorado Classical Mechanics and Math Methods Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caballero, Marcos D.; Doughty, Leanne; Turnbull, Anna M.; Pepper, Rachel E.; Pollock, Steven J.

    2017-06-01

    Reliable and validated assessments of introductory physics have been instrumental in driving curricular and pedagogical reforms that lead to improved student learning. As part of an effort to systematically improve our sophomore-level classical mechanics and math methods course (CM 1) at CU Boulder, we have developed a tool to assess student learning of CM 1 concepts in the upper division. The Colorado Classical Mechanics and Math Methods Instrument (CCMI) builds on faculty consensus learning goals and systematic observations of student difficulties. The result is a 9-question open-ended post test that probes student learning in the first half of a two-semester classical mechanics and math methods sequence. In this paper, we describe the design and development of this instrument, its validation, and measurements made in classes at CU Boulder and elsewhere.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Towards an intelligent learning management system under blended learning trends, profiles and modeling perspectives

    CERN Document Server

    Dias, Sofia B; Hadjileontiadis, Leontios J

    2013-01-01

    This book offers useful information that evokes initiatives towards rethinking of the value, efficiency, inclusiveness, effectiveness and personalization of the intelligent learning management systems-based blended-learning environment.

  4. Under-Threes' Mathematical Learning--Teachers' Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franzén, Karin

    2014-01-01

    This project highlights preschool teachers' views of toddlers' learning in mathematics. The Swedish national curriculum covers even the youngest children who are 1-3?years old. Interesting questions are thus: what should mathematics be for this age group and how should preschool teachers work with maths to achieve the curriculum objectives? Data…

  5. Infrastructure under construction: continuous improvement and learning in projects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gieskes, J.F.B.; ten Broeke, André M.

    2000-01-01

    Continuous improvement and learning are popular concepts in management literature and practice. Often they are situated in an environment where the work is of a repetitive nature. However, there are a lot of organisations where (part of) the primary processes are carried out by means of projects. An

  6. Lifelong learning: Foundational models, underlying assumptions and critiques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regmi, Kapil Dev

    2015-04-01

    Lifelong learning has become a catchword in almost all countries because of its growing influence on education policies in the globalised world. In the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the European Union (EU), the promotion of lifelong learning has been a strategy to speed up economic growth and become competitive. For UNESCO and the World Bank, lifelong learning has been a novel education model to improve educational policies and programmes in developing countries. In the existing body of literature on the topic, various models of lifelong learning are discussed. After reviewing a number of relevant seminal texts by proponents of a variety of schools, this paper argues that the vast number of approaches are actually built on two foundational models, which the author calls the "human capital model" and the "humanistic model". The former aims to increase productive capacity by encouraging competition, privatisation and human capital formation so as to enhance economic growth. The latter aims to strengthen democracy and social welfare by fostering citizenship education, building social capital and expanding capability.

  7. New Keynesian model dynamics under heterogeneous expectations and adaptive learning

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fukač, Martin

    -, č. 5 (2006), s. 1-41 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC542 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z70850503 Keywords : imperfect and heterogeneous knowledge * adaptive learning * monetary policy Subject RIV: AH - Economics http://www.cnb.cz/www.cnb.cz/en/research/research_publications/cnb_wp/index.html

  8. An Efficient Algorithm for Learning Dictionary under Coherence Constraint

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huang Bai

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Dictionary learning problem has become an active topic for decades. Most existing learning methods train the dictionary to adapt to a particular class of signals. But as the number of the dictionary atoms is increased to represent the signals much more sparsely, the coherence between the atoms becomes higher. According to the greedy and compressed sensing theories, this goes against the implementation of sparse coding. In this paper, a novel approach is proposed to learn the dictionary that minimizes the sparse representation error according to the training signals with the coherence taken into consideration. The coherence is constrained by making the Gram matrix of the desired dictionary approximate to an identity matrix of proper dimension. The method for handling the proposed model is mainly based on the alternating minimization procedure and, in each step, the closed-form solution is derived. A series of experiments on synthetic data and audio signals is executed to demonstrate the promising performance of the learnt incoherent dictionary and the superiority of the learning method to the existing ones.

  9. Assessing Student Learning in Middle-Division Classical Mechanics/Math Methods

    OpenAIRE

    Caballero, Marcos D.; Pollock, Steven J.

    2013-01-01

    Reliable and validated assessments of introductory physics have been instrumental in driving curricular and pedagogical reforms that lead to improved student learning. As part of an effort to systematically improve our sophomore-level Classical Mechanics and Math Methods course (CM 1) at CU Boulder, we are developing a tool to assess student learning of CM 1 concepts in the upper-division. The Colorado Classical Mechanics/Math Methods Instrument (CCMI) builds on faculty-consensus learning goa...

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Neophobia and learning mechanisms: how captive orangutans discover medicinal plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gustafsson, Erik; Krief, Sabrina; Saint Jalme, Michel

    2011-01-01

    Great apes sometimes feed on items of low nutritional value with bioactive secondary compounds. These molecules may be toxic and neophobia is presumed to be an essential factor in avoiding the ingestion of noxious items. The aim of this study is to investigate, in captive orangutans, individual and social learning involved in the discovery and ingestion of new items. We presented novel aromatic plants - 11 fresh plants and 4 infused plants - to 4 captive weaned Bornean orangutans, both under isolated and group conditions, and recorded their behaviour and interactions between group members. All animals tasted by nibbling or ingested most of the plants presented. Regardless of the experimental condition, individual responses did not vary visibly across the sessions, despite numerous close observations, and food transfers between individuals were observed. Our results suggest that a low level of neophobia and a strong propensity to look to conspecifics for information allow Bornean orangutans to expand their diet after weaning. Our results also provide some evidence that olfaction is a key sense in determining food edibility based on previous experience. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Neuronal mechanisms of motor learning are age dependent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berghuis, Kelly M M; De Rond, Veerle; Zijdewind, Inge; Koch, Giacomo; Veldman, Menno P; Hortobágyi, Tibor

    2016-10-01

    There is controversy whether age-related neuroanatomical and neurophysiological changes in the central nervous system affect healthy old adults' abilities to acquire and retain motor skills. We examined the effects of age on motor skill acquisition and retention and potential underlying mechanisms by measuring corticospinal and intracortical excitability, using transcranial magnetic stimulation. Healthy young (n = 24, 22 years) and old (n = 22, 71 years) adults practiced a wrist flexion-extention visuomotor task or only watched the templates as an attentional control for 20 minutes. Old compared with young adults performed less well at baseline. Although the absolute magnitude of skill acquisition and retention was similar in the 2 age groups (age × intervention × time, p = 0.425), a comparison of baseline-similar age sub-groups revealed impaired skill acquisition but not retention in old versus young. Furthermore, the neuronal mechanisms differed as revealed by an opposite direction of associations in the age-groups between relative skill acquisition and intracortical facilitation during the task, and opposite changes during skill retention in corticospinal excitability at rest and during the task and intracortical inhibition during the task. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. In search for the neural mechanisms of individual development: behavior-driven differential Hebbian learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ralf eDer

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available When Donald Hebb published his 1949 book ``The Organization of Behavior'' he opened a new way of thinking in theoretical neuroscience which, in retrospective, is very close to contemporary ideas in self-organization. His metaphor of ``wiring'' together what ``fires together'' matches very closely the commonparadigm that global organization can derive from simple local rules. While ingenious at his time and inspiring the research over decades, the results still fall short of the expectations. For instance,unsupervised as they are, such neural mechanisms should be able to explain and realize the self-organizedacquisition of sensorimotor competencies. This paper proposes a new synaptic law which replaces Hebb's original metaphor by that of ``chaining together'' what ``changes together''. Starting from differential Hebbian learning,the new rule grounds the behavior of the agent directly in the internal synaptic dynamics.Therefore, one may call this a behavior-driven synaptic plasticity.Neurorobotics is an ideal testing ground for this new, unsupervised learning rule. This paper focuses on the close coupling between body, control, and environmentin challenging physical settings. The examples demonstrate how the new synaptic mechanism induces a self-determined ``search and converge'' strategy in behavior space, generating spontaneously a variety of sensorimotor competencies. The emerging behavior patterns are qualified by involving body and environment inan irreducible conjunction with the internal mechanism.The results may not only be of immediate interest for the further development of embodied intelligence.They also offer a new view on the role of self-learning processes in natural evolutionand in the brain.Videos and further details may be found under url{http://robot.informatik.uni-leipzig.de/research/supplementary/NeuroAutonomy/}.

  12. Deep greedy learning under thermal variability in full diurnal cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rauss, Patrick; Rosario, Dalton

    2017-08-01

    We study the generalization and scalability behavior of a deep belief network (DBN) applied to a challenging long-wave infrared hyperspectral dataset, consisting of radiance from several manmade and natural materials within a fixed site located 500 m from an observation tower. The collections cover multiple full diurnal cycles and include different atmospheric conditions. Using complementary priors, a DBN uses a greedy algorithm that can learn deep, directed belief networks one layer at a time and has two layers form to provide undirected associative memory. The greedy algorithm initializes a slower learning procedure, which fine-tunes the weights, using a contrastive version of the wake-sleep algorithm. After fine-tuning, a network with three hidden layers forms a very good generative model of the joint distribution of spectral data and their labels, despite significant data variability between and within classes due to environmental and temperature variation occurring within and between full diurnal cycles. We argue, however, that more questions than answers are raised regarding the generalization capacity of these deep nets through experiments aimed at investigating their training and augmented learning behavior.

  13. PKC in motorneurons underlies self-learning, a form of motor learning in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Colomb

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Tethering a fly for stationary flight allows for exquisite control of its sensory input, such as visual or olfactory stimuli or a punishing infrared laser beam. A torque meter measures the turning attempts of the tethered fly around its vertical body axis. By punishing, say, left turning attempts (in a homogeneous environment, one can train a fly to restrict its behaviour to right turning attempts. It was recently discovered that this form of operant conditioning (called operant self-learning, may constitute a form of motor learning in Drosophila. Previous work had shown that Protein Kinase C (PKC and the transcription factor dFoxP were specifically involved in self-learning, but not in other forms of learning. These molecules are specifically involved in various forms of motor learning in other animals, such as compulsive biting in Aplysia, song-learning in birds, procedural learning in mice or language acquisition in humans. Here we describe our efforts to decipher which PKC gene is involved in self-learning in Drosophila. We also provide evidence that motorneurons may be one part of the neuronal network modified during self-learning experiments. The collected evidence is reminiscent of one of the simplest, clinically relevant forms of motor learning in humans, operant reflex conditioning, which also relies on motorneuron plasticity.

  14. A Changed Context of Lifelong Learning under the Influence of Migration: South Korea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jin-Hee

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to examine how Korean society is being changed under the impact of migration and the kinds of learning domains that are evolving through participation in social interaction between migrant workers and local citizens in South Korea. Employing a qualitative case study, participants' changed learning areas were investigated.…

  15. Steps toward Learning Mechanics Using Fan Cart Video Demonstrations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lattery, Mark

    2011-01-01

    The Newtonian force concept is very difficult for introductory students to learn. One obstacle to learning is a premature focus on gravity-driven motions, such as vertical free fall, rolling motion on an inclined plane, and the Atwood's machine. In each case, the main agent of motion ("gravity") cannot be seen, heard, or controlled by the student.…

  16. Unravelling salutogenic mechanisms in the workplace: the role of learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pijpker, Roald; Vaandrager, Lenneke; Bakker, Evert Jan; Koelen, Maria

    2018-02-15

    To explore the moderating and mediating role(s) of learning within the relationship between sense of coherence (SOC) and generalized resistance resources. Cross-sectional study (N=481), using a self-administered questionnaire, of employees working in the healthcare sector in the Netherlands in 2017. Four residential healthcare settings and one healthcare-related Facebook group were involved. Multiple linear regression models were used to test for moderating and mediating effects of learning. Social relations, task significance, and job control significantly explained variance in SOC. Conceptual, social, and instrumental learning, combined, moderated the relationship between SOC and task significance. Instrumental learning moderated the relationship between job control and SOC. Social learning also mediated this relationship. Conceptual learning did not show any moderating or mediating effect. The relationship between SOC and the three GRRs seems to be strengthened or explained-to a certain extent-by instrumental and social learning. Healthcare organizations are recommended to promote learning through formal activities as well as through cooperation, feedback, sharing experiences, and job challenges. This requires employee participation and a multilevel interdisciplinary approach. Copyright © 2018 SESPAS. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  17. The influence of personality on neural mechanisms of observational fear and reward learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooker, Christine I.; Verosky, Sara C.; Miyakawa, Asako; Knight, Robert T.; D’Esposito, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Fear and reward learning can occur through direct experience or observation. Both channels can enhance survival or create maladaptive behavior. We used fMRI to isolate neural mechanisms of observational fear and reward learning and investigate whether neural response varied according to individual differences in neuroticism and extraversion. Participants learned object-emotion associations by observing a woman respond with fearful (or neutral) and happy (or neutral) facial expressions to novel objects. The amygdala-hippocampal complex was active when learning the object-fear association, and the hippocampus was active when learning the object-happy association. After learning, objects were presented alone; amygdala activity was greater for the fear (vs. neutral) and happy (vs. neutral) associated object. Importantly, greater amygdala-hippocampal activity during fear (vs. neutral) learning predicted better recognition of learned objects on a subsequent memory test. Furthermore, personality modulated neural mechanisms of learning. Neuroticism positively correlated with neural activity in the amygdala and hippocampus during fear (vs. neutral) learning. Low extraversion/high introversion was related to faster behavioral predictions of the fearful and neutral expressions during fear learning. In addition, low extraversion/high introversion was related to greater amygdala activity during happy (vs. neutral) learning, happy (vs. neutral) object recognition, and faster reaction times for predicting happy and neutral expressions during reward learning. These findings suggest that neuroticism is associated with an increased sensitivity in the neural mechanism for fear learning which leads to enhanced encoding of fear associations, and that low extraversion/high introversion is related to enhanced conditionability for both fear and reward learning. PMID:18573512

  18. Design Learning of Teaching Factory in Mechanical Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Putra, R. C.; Kusumah, I. H.; Komaro, M.; Rahayu, Y.; Asfiyanur, E. P.

    2018-02-01

    The industrial world that is the target of the process and learning outcomes of vocational high school (SMK) has its own character and nuance. Therefore, vocational education institutions in the learning process should be able to make the appropriate learning approach and in accordance with the industrial world. One approach to learning that is based on production and learning in the world of work is by industry-based learning or known as Teaching Factory, where in this model apply learning that involves direct students in goods or service activities are expected to have the quality so it is worth selling and accepted by consumers. The method used is descriptive approach. The purpose of this research is to get the design of the teaching factory based on the competency requirements of the graduates of the spouse industry, especially in the engineering department. The results of this study is expected to be one of the choice of model factory teaching in the field of machinery engineering in accordance with the products and competencies of the graduates that the industry needs.

  19. Heavy-ion radiobiology: new approaches to delineate mechanisms underlying enhanced biological effectiveness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blakely, E. A.; Kronenberg, A.; Chatterjee, A. (Principal Investigator)

    1998-01-01

    Shortly after the discovery of polonium and radium by Marie Curie and her husband and colleague, Pierre Curie, it was learned that exposure to these alpha-particle emitters produced deleterious biological effects. The mechanisms underlying the increased biological effectiveness of densely ionizing radiations, including alpha particles, neutrons and highly energetic heavy charged particles, remain an active area of investigation. In this paper, we review recent advances in several areas of the radiobiology of these densely ionizing radiations, also known as heavy ions. Advances are described in the areas of DNA damage and repair, chromosome aberrations, mutagenesis, neoplastic transformation in vitro, genomic instability, normal tissue radiobiology and carcinogenesis in vivo. We focus on technical innovations, including novel applications of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), linkage analysis, and studies of gene expression and protein expression. We also highlight the use of new cellular and animal systems, including those with defined DNA repair deficiencies, as well as epithelial cell model systems to assess neoplastic transformation both in vitro and in vivo. The studies reviewed herein have had a substantial impact on our understanding of the genotoxic effects of heavy ions as well as their distinct effects on tissue homeostasis. The use of these radiations in cancer therapy is also discussed. The use of both heavy-ion and proton therapy is on the upswing in several centers around the world, due to their unique energy deposition characteristics that enhance the therapeutic effect and help reduce damage to normal tissue.

  20. MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD: Are memory reconsolidation and fear extinction underlying mechanisms?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feduccia, Allison A; Mithoefer, Michael C

    2018-06-08

    MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for treatment of PTSD has recently progressed to Phase 3 clinical trials and received Breakthrough Therapy designation by the FDA. MDMA used as an adjunct during psychotherapy sessions has demonstrated effectiveness and acceptable safety in reducing PTSD symptoms in Phase 2 trials, with durable remission of PTSD diagnosis in 68% of participants. The underlying psychological and neurological mechanisms for the robust effects in mitigating PTSD are being investigated in animal models and in studies of healthy volunteers. This review explores the potential role of memory reconsolidation and fear extinction during MDMA-assisted psychotherapy. MDMA enhances release of monoamines (serotonin, norepinephrine, dopamine), hormones (oxytocin, cortisol), and other downstream signaling molecules (BDNF) to dynamically modulate emotional memory circuits. By reducing activation in brain regions implicated in the expression of fear- and anxiety-related behaviors, namely the amygdala and insula, and increasing connectivity between the amygdala and hippocampus, MDMA may allow for reprocessing of traumatic memories and emotional engagement with therapeutic processes. Based on the pharmacology of MDMA and the available translational literature of memory reconsolidation, fear learning, and PTSD, this review suggests a neurobiological rationale to explain, at least in part, the large effect sizes demonstrated for MDMA in treating PTSD. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Effect of Kolb's Learning Styles under Inductive Guided-Inquiry Learning on Learning Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudria, Ida Bagus Nyoman; Redhana, I. Wayan; Kirna, I. Made; Aini, Diah

    2018-01-01

    This study aimed to examine the effect of Kolb's learning styles on chemical learning activities and achievement of reaction rate taught by inductive guided inquiry learning. The population was eleventh grade Science students of a senior secondary school having relatively good academic input based on national testing results in Bali, Indonesia.…

  2. 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.

  3. Analyzing the Effects of Various Concept Mapping Techniques on Learning Achievement under Different Learning Styles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiou, Chei-Chang; Lee, Li-Tze; Tien, Li-Chu; Wang, Yu-Min

    2017-01-01

    This study explored the effectiveness of different concept mapping techniques on the learning achievement of senior accounting students and whether achievements attained using various techniques are affected by different learning styles. The techniques are computer-assisted construct-by-self-concept mapping (CACSB), computer-assisted…

  4. Learning Similar Actions by Reinforcement or Sensory-Prediction Errors Rely on Distinct Physiological Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uehara, Shintaro; Mawase, Firas; Celnik, Pablo

    2017-09-14

    Humans can acquire knowledge of new motor behavior via different forms of learning. The two forms most commonly studied have been the development of internal models based on sensory-prediction errors (error-based learning) and success-based feedback (reinforcement learning). Human behavioral studies suggest these are distinct learning processes, though the neurophysiological mechanisms that are involved have not been characterized. Here, we evaluated physiological markers from the cerebellum and the primary motor cortex (M1) using noninvasive brain stimulations while healthy participants trained finger-reaching tasks. We manipulated the extent to which subjects rely on error-based or reinforcement by providing either vector or binary feedback about task performance. Our results demonstrated a double dissociation where learning the task mainly via error-based mechanisms leads to cerebellar plasticity modifications but not long-term potentiation (LTP)-like plasticity changes in M1; while learning a similar action via reinforcement mechanisms elicited M1 LTP-like plasticity but not cerebellar plasticity changes. Our findings indicate that learning complex motor behavior is mediated by the interplay of different forms of learning, weighing distinct neural mechanisms in M1 and the cerebellum. Our study provides insights for designing effective interventions to enhance human motor learning. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Application of ICT supported learning in fluid mechanics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brohus, Henrik; Svidt, Kjeld

    2004-01-01

    it has been tried to make use of several tools for knowledge transfer ranging from the traditional blackboard over physical demonstrations of air flow in a full-scale laboratory mock-up to virtual reality demonstrations. Students have different ways of understanding a certain topic, using a broad range....... It is found that a combined application of various tools for knowledge transfer increases learning efficiency, for instance it is seen that a combination of physical experiments in laboratory and virtual experiments by computer simulation has a high level of synergy. A model for a combined use of several...... learning tools is presented. The model describes the teaching method and the pedagogical means. It explains how different learning domains ? physical as virtual ? may be combined to form a high efficiency learning environment (HELE)....

  6. Learning and Memory, Part II: Molecular Mechanisms of Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombroso, Paul; Ogren, Marilee

    2009-01-01

    The molecular events that are responsible for strengthening synaptic connections and how these are linked to memory and learning are discussed. The laboratory preparations that allow the investigation of these events are also described.

  7. Interaction between emotional state and learning underlies mood instability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eldar, Eran; Niv, Yael

    2015-01-01

    Intuitively, good and bad outcomes affect our emotional state, but whether the emotional state feeds back onto the perception of outcomes remains unknown. Here, we use behaviour and functional neuroimaging of human participants to investigate this bidirectional interaction, by comparing the evaluation of slot machines played before and after an emotion-impacting wheel-of-fortune draw. Results indicate that self-reported mood instability is associated with a positive-feedback effect of emotional state on the perception of outcomes. We then use theoretical simulations to demonstrate that such positive feedback would result in mood destabilization. Taken together, our results suggest that the interaction between emotional state and learning may play a significant role in the emergence of mood instability. PMID:25608088

  8. Ruby under a microscope learning Ruby internals through experiment

    CERN Document Server

    Shaughnessy, Pat

    2013-01-01

    How Ruby Works Under the HoodRuby is a powerful programming language with a focus on simplicity, but beneath its elegant syntax it performs countless unseen tasks.Ruby Under a Microscope gives you a hands-on look at Ruby's core, using extensive diagrams and thorough explanations to show you how Ruby is implemented (no C skills required). Author Pat Shaughnessy takes a scientific approach, laying out a series of experiments with Ruby code to take you behind the scenes of how programming languages work. You'll even find information on JRuby and Rubinius (two alternative implementations of Ruby),

  9. Two different motor learning mechanisms contribute to learning reaching movements in a rotated visual environment [version 2; referees: 2 approved, 1 approved with reservations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia Way Tong Chu

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Practice of movement in virtual-reality and other artificially altered environments has been proposed as a method for rehabilitation following neurological injury and for training new skills in healthy humans.  For such training to be useful, there must be transfer of learning from the artificial environment to the performance of desired skills in the natural environment.  Therefore an important assumption of such methods is that practice in the altered environment engages the same learning and plasticity mechanisms that are required for skill performance in the natural environment.  We test the hypothesis that transfer of learning may fail because the learning and plasticity mechanism that adapts to the altered environment is different from the learning mechanism required for improvement of motor skill.  In this paper, we propose that a model that separates skill learning and environmental adaptation is necessary to explain the learning and aftereffects that are observed in virtual reality experiments.  In particular, we studied the condition where practice in the altered environment should lead to correct skill performance in the original environment. Our 2-mechanism model predicts that aftereffects will still be observed when returning to the original environment, indicating a lack of skill transfer from the artificial environment to the original environment. To illustrate the model prediction, we tested 10 healthy participants on the interaction between a simple overlearned motor skill (straight hand movements to targets in different directions and an artificially altered visuomotor environment (rotation of visual feedback of the results of movement.  As predicted by the models, participants show adaptation to the altered environment and after-effects on return to the baseline environment even when practice in the altered environment should have led to correct skill performance.  The presence of aftereffect under all conditions that

  10. College radio as a mechanism for participatory learning: Exploring the scope for online radio based learning among undergraduates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bahaeldin Ibrahim

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper explores the prospects of online college radio at Sur College of Applied Sciences, its need among students and the possible scope of its contributions to student learning, engagement and community service. It explores the method of developing a holistic mechanism to capture the possibilities of maximizing learning experience by employing college radio as an educational tool to understand the micro-dynamics and localized necessities that deem it necessary or unnecessary. Through this, it attempts to locate an appropriate mechanism, and targeted use of the college radio in contributing to the learning outcomes and educational experience of the students. The study finds considerable scope for radio based learning at Sur College of Applied Sciences across a range of uses and gratification indicators consistent with the primary objectives of the college. The study discusses the theoretical and practical implications of the findings, and the pedagogical significance of the college radio as an alternative.

  11. Rule-based mechanisms of learning for intelligent adaptive flight control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Handelman, David A.; Stengel, Robert F.

    1990-01-01

    How certain aspects of human learning can be used to characterize learning in intelligent adaptive control systems is investigated. Reflexive and declarative memory and learning are described. It is shown that model-based systems-theoretic adaptive control methods exhibit attributes of reflexive learning, whereas the problem-solving capabilities of knowledge-based systems of artificial intelligence are naturally suited for implementing declarative learning. Issues related to learning in knowledge-based control systems are addressed, with particular attention given to rule-based systems. A mechanism for real-time rule-based knowledge acquisition is suggested, and utilization of this mechanism within the context of failure diagnosis for fault-tolerant flight control is demonstrated.

  12. Mechanisms of peer tutoring on optimizing cognitive load during knowledge sharing in learning networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hsiao, Amy; Brouns, Francis; Sloep, Peter

    2010-01-01

    Hsiao, Y. P., Brouns, F., & Sloep, P. B. (2010, 15 April). Mechanisms of peer tutoring on optimizing cognitive load during knowledge sharing in learning networks. Presentation at NELLL Colloqium, Heerlen, The Netherlands: Open University of the Netherlands.

  13. Value innovation, deliberate learning mechanisms and information from supply chain partners

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berghman, L.A.; Matthyssens, P.; Vandenbempt, K.

    2012-01-01

    Although marketing scholars have emphasized both the importance of internal learning mechanisms and of external learning through supply chain partners research findings on how these factors influence each other are merely lacking. Analyzing survey data of 182 industrial firms, we examine how

  14. 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…

  15. Learning-by-Teaching. Evidence and Implications as a Pedagogical Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duran, David

    2017-01-01

    In order to create an initial framework for learning-by-teaching, this article reviews a body of relevant research, from a historical perspective, gathering evidence about the potential and the limits of this pedagogical mechanism. Results indicate that the more complex the teaching activity is, the more opportunities there are to learn by…

  16. Teacher Opinions on the Innovation Management Skills of School Administrators and Organizational Learning Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omur, Yunus Emre; Argon, Turkan

    2016-01-01

    Problem Statement: In modern society, schools, just as other institutions, are required to be innovative organizations. For this purpose, they must not only be learning organizations, they must also be innovative. In this sense, the purpose of this study is to discover the relationship between organizational learning mechanisms at schools and…

  17. The Mechanism of Impact of Summative Assessment on Medical Students' Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cilliers, Francois J.; Schuwirth, Lambert W.; Adendorff, Hanelie J.; Herman, Nicoline; van der Vleuten, Cees P.

    2010-01-01

    It has become axiomatic that assessment impacts powerfully on student learning, but there is a surprising dearth of research on how. This study explored the mechanism of impact of summative assessment on the process of learning of theory in higher education. Individual, in-depth interviews were conducted with medical students and analyzed…

  18. 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

  19. Using variability to guide dimensional weighting: Associative mechanisms in early word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apfelbaum, Keith S.; McMurray, Bob

    2013-01-01

    At 14 months, children appear to struggle to apply their fairly well developed speech perception abilities to learning similar sounding words (e.g. bih/dih; Stager & Werker, 1997). However, variability in non-phonetic aspects of the training stimuli seems to aid word learning at this age. Extant theories of early word learning cannot account for this benefit of variability. We offer a simple explanation for this range of effects based on associative learning. Simulations suggest that if infants encode both non-contrastive information (e.g. cues to speaker voice) and meaningful linguistic cues (e.g. place of articulation or voicing), then associative learning mechanisms predict these variability effects in early word learning. Crucially, this means that despite the importance of task variables in predicting performance, this body of work shows that phonological categories are still developing in this age, and that the structure of non-informative cues has critical influences on word learning abilities. PMID:21609356

  20. The evolution of social learning mechanisms and cultural phenomena in group foragers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Post, Daniel J; Franz, Mathias; Laland, Kevin N

    2017-02-10

    Advanced cognitive abilities are widely thought to underpin cultural traditions and cumulative cultural change. In contrast, recent simulation models have found that basic social influences on learning suffice to support both cultural phenomena. In the present study we test the predictions of these models in the context of skill learning, in a model with stochastic demographics, variable group sizes, and evolved parameter values, exploring the cultural ramifications of three different social learning mechanisms. Our results show that that simple forms of social learning such as local enhancement, can generate traditional differences in the context of skill learning. In contrast, we find cumulative cultural change is supported by observational learning, but not local or stimulus enhancement, which supports the idea that advanced cognitive abilities are important for generating this cultural phenomenon in the context of skill learning. Our results help to explain the observation that animal cultures are widespread, but cumulative cultural change might be rare.

  1. Assessing Learning Outcomes in Middle-Division Classical Mechanics: The Colorado Classical Mechanics and Math Methods Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caballero, Marcos D.; Doughty, Leanne; Turnbull, Anna M.; Pepper, Rachel E.; Pollock, Steven J.

    2017-01-01

    Reliable and validated assessments of introductory physics have been instrumental in driving curricular and pedagogical reforms that lead to improved student learning. As part of an effort to systematically improve our sophomore-level classical mechanics and math methods course (CM 1) at CU Boulder, we have developed a tool to assess student…

  2. Improving students' meaningful learning on the predictive nature of quantum mechanics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolfo Alves de Carvalho Neto

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with research about teaching quantum mechanics to 3rd year high school students and their meaningful learning of its predictive aspect; it is based on the Master’s dissertation of one of the authors (CARVALHO NETO, 2006. While teaching quantum mechanics, we emphasized its predictive and essentially probabilistic nature, based on Niels Bohr’s complementarity interpretation (BOHR, 1958. In this context, we have discussed the possibility of predicting measurement results in well-defined experimental contexts, even for individual events. Interviews with students reveal that they have used quantum mechanical ideas, suggesting their meaningful learning of the essentially probabilistic predictions of quantum mechanics.

  3. 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

  4. Sequence Evolution Under Constraints: Lessons Learned from Sudoku.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Yucheng; Yang, Gongrong

    2016-10-01

    The complex structures of all proteins in nature are outcomes of a random walk driven by mutation and selection. Reconstructing the fitness landscape staging this process based on first-principle physical rules or experimental measurements is difficult. In this article we turn the popular Sudoku game into an artificial fitness landscape and use it as a model system to study sequence evolution under constraints. The Sudoku rules, which are human-mind friendly, intertwine a rugged landscape for sequences composed of digits, mimicking the functional constraints felt by a tightly folded protein. Simulated evolution reveals interesting properties of the valley-crossing dynamics on this complex landscape. It is found that (i) the mutation accumulation rate during valley-crossing is constant among different evolutionary pathways and depends on the ruggedness of the landscape; (ii) genetic drift and neutral networks play constructive roles during the process of searching for novel functions; and (iii) under strong selection, gene duplication can speed up the evolution by relaxing, but not completely liberating, the redundant copy from selective pressure. Insights gained from this prototype model may help us understand the evolution of real proteins.

  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. Mechanisms of social avoidance learning can explain the emergence of adaptive and arbitrary behavioral traditions in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindström, Björn; Olsson, Andreas

    2015-06-01

    Many nonhuman animals preferentially copy the actions of others when the environment contains predation risk or other types of danger. In humans, the role of social learning in avoidance of danger is still unknown, despite the fundamental importance of social learning for complex social behaviors. Critically, many social behaviors, such as cooperation and adherence to religious taboos, are maintained by threat of punishment. However, the psychological mechanisms allowing threat of punishment to generate such behaviors, even when actual punishment is rare or absent, are largely unknown. To address this, we used both computer simulations and behavioral experiments. First, we constructed a model where simulated agents interacted under threat of punishment and showed that mechanisms' (a) tendency to copy the actions of others through social learning, together with (b) the rewarding properties of avoiding a threatening punishment, could explain the emergence, maintenance, and transmission of large-scale behavioral traditions, both when punishment is common and when it is rare or nonexistent. To provide empirical support for our model, including the 2 mechanisms, we conducted 4 experiments, showing that humans, if threatened with punishment, are exceptionally prone to copy and transmit the behavior observed in others. Our results show that humans, similar to many nonhuman animals, use social learning if the environment is perceived as dangerous. We provide a novel psychological and computational basis for a range of human behaviors characterized by the threat of punishment, such as the adherence to cultural norms and religious taboos. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  7. Undergraduate Teaching and Learning Evaluation: Focus on the Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dongmei, Zeng; Jiangbo, Chen

    2009-01-01

    It is obvious to all that the National Undergraduate Teaching and Learning Evaluation plan for higher education institutions launched in 2003 has promoted undergraduate teaching at universities and colleges. At the same time, however, the authors have also witnessed problems with the evaluation work itself, for example, unified evaluation…

  8. Mapping Learning and Game Mechanics for Serious Games Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnab, Sylvester; Lim, Theodore; Carvalho, Maira B.; Bellotti, Francesco; de Freitas, Sara; Louchart, Sandy; Suttie, Neil; Berta, Riccardo; De Gloria, Alessandro

    2015-01-01

    Although there is a consensus on the instructional potential of Serious Games (SGs), there is still a lack of methodologies and tools not only for design but also to support analysis and assessment. Filling this gap is one of the main aims of the Games and Learning Alliance (http://www.galanoe.eu) European Network of Excellence on Serious Games,…

  9. Statistical mechanics of learning: A variational approach for real data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Malzahn, Doerthe; Opper, Manfred

    2002-01-01

    Using a variational technique, we generalize the statistical physics approach of learning from random examples to make it applicable to real data. We demonstrate the validity and relevance of our method by computing approximate estimators for generalization errors that are based on training data alone

  10. Perceptual Organization of Visual Structure Requires a Flexible Learning Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aslin, Richard N.

    2011-01-01

    Bhatt and Quinn (2011) provide a compelling and comprehensive review of empirical evidence that supports the operation of principles of perceptual organization in young infants. They also have provided a comprehensive list of experiences that could serve to trigger the learning of at least some of these principles of perceptual organization, and…

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Neural substrates underlying motor skill learning in chronic hemiparetic stroke patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephanie eLefebvre

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Motor skill learning is critical in post-stroke motor recovery, but little is known about its underlying neural substrates. Recently, using a new visuomotor skill learning paradigm involving a speed/accuracy trade-off in healthy individuals we identified three subpopulations based on their behavioral trajectories: fitters (in whom improvement in speed or accuracy coincided with deterioration in the other parameter, shifters (in whom speed and/or accuracy improved without degradation of the other parameter, and non-learners. We aimed to identify the neural substrates underlying the first stages of motor skill learning in chronic hemiparetic stroke patients and to determine whether specific neural substrates were recruited in shifters versus fitters. During functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, 23 patients learned the visuomotor skill with their paretic upper limb. In the whole-group analysis, correlation between activation and motor skill learning was restricted to the dorsal prefrontal cortex of the damaged hemisphere (DLPFCdamh: r=-0.82 and the dorsal premotor cortex (PMddamh: r=0.70; the correlations was much lesser (-0.160.25 in the other regions of interest. In a subgroup analysis, significant activation was restricted to bilateral posterior parietal cortices of the fitters and did not correlate with motor skill learning. Conversely, in shifters significant activation occurred in the primary sensorimotor cortexdamh and supplementary motor areadamh and in bilateral PMd where activation changes correlated significantly with motor skill learning (r=0.91. Finally, resting-state activity acquired before learning showed a higher functional connectivity in the salience network of shifters compared with fitters (qFDR<0.05. These data suggest a neuroplastic compensatory reorganization of brain activity underlying the first stages of motor skill learning with the paretic upper limb in chronic hemiparetic stroke patients, with a key role of

  15. [Possible evolutionary mechanisms of 'culture' in animals: The hypothesis of distributed social learning].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reznikova, Zh I; Panteleeva, S N

    2015-01-01

    There is a plethora of works on the origin and genesis of behavioral traditions in different animal species. Nevertheless, it still remains unclear as for which factors facilitate and which factors hinder the spreading those forms of behavior that are new for a population. Here, we present an analytical review on the topic, considering also the results of studies on 'culture' in animals and analyzing contradictions that arise when attempting to clarify the ethological mechanisms of cultural succession. The hypothesis of 'distributed social learning' is formulated, meaning that for spreading of complex behavioral stereotypes in a population the presence of few carriers of consistent stereotypes is enough under the condition that the rest of animals carry incomplete genetic programmes that start up these stereotypes. Existence of 'dormant' fragments of such programmes determines an inborn predisposition of their bearer to perform a certain sequence of acts. To complete the consistent stereotype, the simplest forms of social learning ('social alleviation') turn to be enough. The hypothesis is examined at the behavioral level and supported by experimental data obtained when studying the scenarios of hunting behavior development in ants Myrmica rubra L. It makes possible to explain the spreading of behavioral models in animal communities in a simpler way than cultural succession.

  16. Mechanisms underlying the production of false memories for famous people's names in aging and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plancher, Gaën; Guyard, Anne; Nicolas, Serge; Piolino, Pascale

    2009-10-01

    It is well known that the occurrence of false memories increases with aging, but the results remain inconsistent concerning Alzheimer's disease (AD). Moreover, the mechanisms underlying the production of false memories are still unclear. Using an experimental episodic memory test with material based on the names of famous people in a procedure derived from the DRM paradigm [Roediger, H. L., III, & McDermott, K. B. (1995). Creating false memories: Remembering words not presented in lists. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory & Cognition, 21, 803-814], we examined correct and false recall and recognition in 30 young adults, 40 healthy older adults, and 30 patients with AD. Moreover, we evaluated the relationships between false memory performance, correct episodic memory performance, and a set of neuropsychological assessments evaluating the semantic memory and executive functions. The results clearly indicated that correct recall and recognition performance decreased with the subjects' age, but it decreased even more with AD. In addition, semantically related false recalls and false recognitions increased with age but not with dementia. On the contrary, non-semantically related false recalls and false recognitions increased with AD. Finally, the regression analyses showed that executive functions mediated related false memories and episodic memory mediated related and unrelated false memories in aging. Moreover, executive functions predicted related and unrelated false memories in AD, and episodic and semantic memory predicted semantically related and unrelated false memories in AD. In conclusion, the results obtained are consistent with the current constructive models of memory suggesting that false memory creation depends on different cognitive functions and, consequently, that the impairments of these functions influence the production of false memories.

  17. 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.

  18. Statistical-Mechanical Analysis of Pre-training and Fine Tuning in Deep Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohzeki, Masayuki

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, we present a statistical-mechanical analysis of deep learning. We elucidate some of the essential components of deep learning — pre-training by unsupervised learning and fine tuning by supervised learning. We formulate the extraction of features from the training data as a margin criterion in a high-dimensional feature-vector space. The self-organized classifier is then supplied with small amounts of labelled data, as in deep learning. Although we employ a simple single-layer perceptron model, rather than directly analyzing a multi-layer neural network, we find a nontrivial phase transition that is dependent on the number of unlabelled data in the generalization error of the resultant classifier. In this sense, we evaluate the efficacy of the unsupervised learning component of deep learning. The analysis is performed by the replica method, which is a sophisticated tool in statistical mechanics. We validate our result in the manner of deep learning, using a simple iterative algorithm to learn the weight vector on the basis of belief propagation.

  19. Formation and adaptation of memory : Neurobiological mechanisms underlying learning and reversal learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Havekes, Robbert

    2008-01-01

    The hippocampus is a brain region that plays a critical role in memory formation. In addition, it has been suggested that this brain region is important for ‘updating’ information that is incorrect or outdated. The main goal of this thesis project was to investigate which neurobiological processes

  20. Collaborative testing for key-term definitions under representative conditions: Efficiency costs and no learning benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wissman, Kathryn T; Rawson, Katherine A

    2018-01-01

    Students are expected to learn key-term definitions across many different grade levels and academic disciplines. Thus, investigating ways to promote understanding of key-term definitions is of critical importance for applied purposes. A recent survey showed that learners report engaging in collaborative practice testing when learning key-term definitions, with outcomes also shedding light on the way in which learners report engaging in collaborative testing in real-world contexts (Wissman & Rawson, 2016, Memory, 24, 223-239). However, no research has directly explored the effectiveness of engaging in collaborative testing under representative conditions. Accordingly, the current research evaluates the costs (with respect to efficiency) and the benefits (with respect to learning) of collaborative testing for key-term definitions under representative conditions. In three experiments (ns = 94, 74, 95), learners individually studied key-term definitions and then completed retrieval practice, which occurred either individually or collaboratively (in dyads). Two days later, all learners completed a final individual test. Results from Experiments 1-2 showed a cost (with respect to efficiency) and no benefit (with respect to learning) of engaging in collaborative testing for key-term definitions. Experiment 3 evaluated a theoretical explanation for why collaborative benefits do not emerge under representative conditions. Collectively, outcomes indicate that collaborative testing versus individual testing is less effective and less efficient when learning key-term definitions under representative conditions.

  1. Active Learning in Fluid Mechanics: Youtube Tube Flow and Puzzling Fluids Questions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hrenya, Christine M.

    2011-01-01

    Active-learning exercises appropriate for a course in undergraduate fluid mechanics are presented. The first exercise involves an experiment in gravity-driven tube flow, with small groups of students partaking in a contest to predict the experimental flow rates using the mechanical energy balance. The second exercise takes the form of an…

  2. Into the Weeds: A Critical Analysis of Game Mechanics and Learning Goals in Games for Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horstman, Theresa

    2013-01-01

    In the broadest scope, the purpose of this research is to expose the range and complexity of how educational games support learning. In a more narrowed scope, the purpose is to develop a method to help identify the qualities of educational video games that support learning. This is accomplished by analyzing the design of the game and the…

  3. 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.)

  4. Cognitive Mechanisms Underlying Risky Decision-Making in Chronic Cannabis Users.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fridberg, Daniel J; Queller, Sarah; Ahn, Woo-Young; Kim, Woojae; Bishara, Anthony J; Busemeyer, Jerome R; Porrino, Linda; Stout, Julie C

    2010-02-01

    Chronic cannabis users are known to be impaired on a test of decision-making, the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT). Computational models of the psychological processes underlying this impairment have the potential to provide a rich description of the psychological characteristics of poor performers within particular clinical groups. We used two computational models of IGT performance, the Expectancy-Valence Learning model (EVL) and the Prospect-Valence Learning model (PVL), to assess motivational, memory, and response processes in 17 chronic cannabis abusers and 15 control participants. Model comparison and simulation methods revealed that the PVL model explained the observed data better than the EVL model. Results indicated that cannabis abusers tended to be under-influenced by loss magnitude, treating each loss as a constant and minor negative outcome regardless of the size of the loss. In addition, they were more influenced by gains, and made decisions that were less consistent with their expectancies relative to non-using controls.

  5. Chunking in SOAR: The Anatomy of a General Learning Mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1985-09-01

    Directorate Boiling Air Force Base Dr. John Black * Washington, DC 20332 Yale University Box 11A, Yale Station Dr. Robert Ahlers New Haven, CT 06520 * Code N71...9 [lhe inelegance of this solution leads us to behe ~e that ’Ae do not ,ct hae the right assumptions about how new objects are to be created from old...unboxed numbers give the order that the chunks are learned, while the boxed numbers show where the chunks are used in later problem sol% ing. Once the

  6. The Conceptual Mechanism for Viable Organizational Learning Based on Complex System Theory and the Viable System Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Dia; You, Yeongmahn; Song, Ji Hoon

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of this research is to explore the possibility of viable learning organizations based on identifying viable organizational learning mechanisms. Two theoretical foundations, complex system theory and viable system theory, have been integrated to provide the rationale for building the sustainable organizational learning mechanism. The…

  7. Constructing a User-Friendly and Smart Ubiquitous Personalized Learning Environment by Using a Context-Aware Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Ching-Bang

    2017-01-01

    Although m-learning applications have been widely researched, few studies have investigated applying adaptive learning content to various learning environments and efficient input interfaces. This study combined a context-aware mechanism, which can be used to provide suitable learning information anytime and anyplace by using GPS technology, with…

  8. Sentence-based attention mechanisms in word learning: Evidence from a computational model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afra eAlishahi

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available When looking for the referents of nouns, adults and young children are sensitive to cross- situational statistics (Yu & Smith, 2007; Smith & Yu, 2008. In addition, the linguistic context that a word appears in has been shown to act as a powerful attention mechanism for guiding sentence processing and word learning (Landau & Gleitman, 1985; Altmann & Kamide, 1999; Kako & Trueswell, 2000. Koehne & Crocker (2010, 2011 investigate the interaction between cross-situational evidence and guidance from the sentential context in an adult language learning scenario. Their studies reveal that these learning mechanisms interact in a complex manner: they can be used in a complementary way when context helps reduce referential uncertainty; they influence word learning about equally strongly when cross-situational and contextual evidence are in conflict; and contextual cues block aspects of cross-situational learning when both mechanisms are independently applicable. To address this complex pattern of findings, we present a probabilistic computational model of word learning which extends a previous cross-situational model (Fazly et al., 2010 with an attention mechanism based on sentential cues. Our model uses a framework that seamlessly combines the two sources of evidence in order to study their emerging pattern of interaction during the process of word learning. Simulations of the experiments of Koehne & Crocker (2010, 2011 reveal an overall patterns of results that are in line with their findings. Importantly, we demonstrate that our model does not need to explicitly assign priority to either source of evidence in order to produce these results: learning patterns emerge as a result of a probabilistic interaction between the two types of cues. Moreover, using a computational model allows us to examine the developmental trajectory of the differential roles of cross-situational and sentential cues in word learning.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Motor learning in childhood reveals distinct mechanisms for memory retention and re-learning

    OpenAIRE

    Musselman, Kristin E.; Roemmich, Ryan T.; Garrett, Ben; Bastian, Amy J.

    2016-01-01

    Adults can easily learn and access multiple versions of the same motor skill adapted for different conditions (e.g., walking in water, sand, snow). Following even a single session of adaptation, adults exhibit clear day-to-day retention and faster re-learning of the adapted pattern. Here, we studied the retention and re-learning of an adapted walking pattern in children aged 6–17 yr. We found that all children, regardless of age, showed adult-like patterns of retention of the adapted walking ...

  12. Underlying Processes of an Inverted Personalization Effect in Multimedia Learning – An Eye-Tracking Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steffi Zander

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available One of the frequently examined design principles in multimedia learning is the personalization principle. Based on empirical evidence this principle states that using personalized messages in multimedia learning is more beneficial than using formal language (e.g., using ‘you’ instead of ‘the’. Although there is evidence that these slight changes in regard to the language style affect learning, motivation and the perceived cognitive load, it remains unclear, (1 whether the positive effects of personalized language can be transferred to all kinds of content of learning materials (e.g., specific potentially aversive health issues and (2 which are the underlying processes (e.g., attention allocation of the personalization effect. German university students (N = 37 learned symptoms and causes of cerebral hemorrhages either with a formal or a personalized version of the learning material. Analysis revealed comparable results to the few existing previous studies, indicating an inverted personalization effect for potentially aversive learning material. This effect was specifically revealed in regard to decreased average fixation duration and the number of fixations exclusively on the images in the personalized compared to the formal version. These results can be seen as indicators for an inverted effect of personalization on the level of visual attention.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Brain activations underlying different patterns of performance improvement during early motor skill learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefebvre, Stéphanie; Dricot, Laurence; Gradkowski, Wojciech; Laloux, Patrice; Vandermeeren, Yves

    2012-08-01

    Motor learning plays a central role in daily life and in neurorehabilitation. Several forms of motor learning have been described, among which motor skill learning, i.e. reaching a superior level of performance (a skill) through a shift of the speed/accuracy trade-off. During the first stage of learning a visuomotor skill, we observed differential patterns of evolution of the speed/accuracy trade-off in normal subjects. Half of the subjects rapidly achieved successful motor skill learning with an early shift of the speed/accuracy trade-off leading to a superior level of performance (shift pattern). The other subjects attained only minimal global improvement due to a converse evolution of speed and accuracy (i.e. a respect of the speed/accuracy trade-off: fit pattern). Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to explore the neural substrates underlying these differential patterns during the first stage of motor skill learning in normal subjects. Twenty right-handed normal subjects performed an implicit visuomotor learning task with their non-dominant hand. The task ("circuit game") consisted in learning to navigate a pointer along a circuit as quickly and accurately as possible using a fMRI-compatible mouse. Velocity, accuracy, and performance indexes were used to characterise the motor learning pattern (shift/fit) and to perform fMRI correlation analysis in order to find the neural substrate associated with the shift and fit patterns during early motor skill learning. Nine subjects showed a fit pattern (fitters), and eleven, a shift pattern ("shifters"). fMRI analyses at whole group level (ANOVA) and at sub-group level demonstrated that the supplementary motor area (SMA) was more activated in "shifters" than in the "fitters" groups and that the BOLD activation within the SMA correlated significantly with the on-line shift of the speed/accuracy trade-off in the "shifters" group. Despite identical instructions and experimental conditions, during the

  16. DIDACTIC SEQUENCE: A DIALETIC MECHANISM FOR LANGUAGE TEACHING AND LEARNING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Didiê Ana Ceni Denardi

    Full Text Available Abstract: In pre- and in-service mother and additional language courses in Brazil, the concept of the didactic sequence has been largely studied as a theoretical and methodological procedure for language teaching and learning, since it focuses on the work of oral and written texts in a genre-based perspective. This text has the aim of extending this concept, taking into account its dialectic nature. To do so, the article reviews the definition, theoretical choices, characteristics, and modular structure of a didactic sequence, comparing this procedure to the concept of a dialectic methodology of knowledge construction in the classroom, and presents a brief analysis of a didactic sequence plan.

  17. Dynamic optimal strategies in transboundary pollution game under learning by doing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Shuhua; Qin, Weihua; Wang, Xinyu

    2018-01-01

    In this paper, we present a transboundary pollution game, in which emission permits trading and pollution abatement costs under learning by doing are considered. In this model, the abatement cost mainly depends on the level of pollution abatement and the experience of using pollution abatement technology. We use optimal control theory to investigate the optimal emission paths and the optimal pollution abatement strategies under cooperative and noncooperative games, respectively. Additionally, the effects of parameters on the results have been examined.

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Efficient learning mechanisms hold in the social domain and are implemented in the medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seid-Fatemi, Azade; Tobler, Philippe N

    2015-05-01

    When we are learning to associate novel cues with outcomes, learning is more efficient if we take advantage of previously learned associations and thereby avoid redundant learning. The blocking effect represents this sort of efficiency mechanism and refers to the phenomenon in which a novel stimulus is blocked from learning when it is associated with a fully predicted outcome. Although there is sufficient evidence that this effect manifests itself when individuals learn about their own rewards, it remains unclear whether it also does when they learn about others' rewards. We employed behavioral and neuroimaging methods to address this question. We demonstrate that blocking does indeed occur in the social domain and it does so to a similar degree as observed in the individual domain. On the neural level, activations in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) show a specific contribution to blocking and learning-related prediction errors in the social domain. These findings suggest that the efficiency principle that applies to reward learning in the individual domain also applies to that in the social domain, with the mPFC playing a central role in implementing it. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Efficient learning mechanisms hold in the social domain and are implemented in the medial prefrontal cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tobler, Philippe N.

    2015-01-01

    When we are learning to associate novel cues with outcomes, learning is more efficient if we take advantage of previously learned associations and thereby avoid redundant learning. The blocking effect represents this sort of efficiency mechanism and refers to the phenomenon in which a novel stimulus is blocked from learning when it is associated with a fully predicted outcome. Although there is sufficient evidence that this effect manifests itself when individuals learn about their own rewards, it remains unclear whether it also does when they learn about others’ rewards. We employed behavioral and neuroimaging methods to address this question. We demonstrate that blocking does indeed occur in the social domain and it does so to a similar degree as observed in the individual domain. On the neural level, activations in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) show a specific contribution to blocking and learning-related prediction errors in the social domain. These findings suggest that the efficiency principle that applies to reward learning in the individual domain also applies to that in the social domain, with the mPFC playing a central role in implementing it. PMID:25326037

  3. From production-oriented farming towards multifunctional entrepreneurship : exploring the underlying learning process

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seuneke, P.L.M.

    2014-01-01

      This thesis unravels the learning process underlying the switch from conventional production-oriented farming towards ‘multifunctional entrepreneurship’. In other words: the process by which former production-oriented farmers (men, women and their families) re-invent themselves

  4. Neurochemical Manipulation of Procedural Memory Sequential Stimuli Learning Under Influence of Phentermine and Pentobarbital

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Volkerts, E; van Laar, M.W; Verbaten, M.N; Mulder, G.; Maes, R.A A

    Within the scope of implicit, procedural memory research a large number of empirical studies have been conducted to explore the conditions under which structured sequence learning will emerge in healthy volunteers. Up to now, a few studies have been carried out to determine the effects of

  5. 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.

  6. 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...

  7. 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...

  8. Adaptive and Energy Efficient Walking in a Hexapod Robot under Neuromechanical Control and Sensorimotor Learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Xiong, Xiaofeng; Wörgötter, Florentin; Manoonpong, Poramate

    2016-01-01

    feedback and for online tuning the VAAMs' stiffness parameters. The control and learning mechanisms enable the hexapod robot advanced mobility sensor driven-walking device (AMOS) to achieve variable compliant walking that accommodates different gaits and surfaces. As a consequence, AMOS can perform more...... energy efficient walking, compared to other small legged robots. In addition, this paper also shows that the tight combination of neural control with tunable muscle-like functions, guided by sensory feedback and coupled with sensorimotor learning, is a way forward to better understand and solve adaptive...

  9. 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.

  10. Imitation learning based on an intrinsic motivation mechanism for efficient coding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Triesch, Jochen

    2013-01-01

    A hypothesis regarding the development of imitation learning is presented that is rooted in intrinsic motivations. It is derived from a recently proposed form of intrinsically motivated learning (IML) for efficient coding in active perception, wherein an agent learns to perform actions with its sense organs to facilitate efficient encoding of the sensory data. To this end, actions of the sense organs that improve the encoding of the sensory data trigger an internally generated reinforcement signal. Here it is argued that the same IML mechanism might also support the development of imitation when general actions beyond those of the sense organs are considered: The learner first observes a tutor performing a behavior and learns a model of the the behavior's sensory consequences. The learner then acts itself and receives an internally generated reinforcement signal reflecting how well the sensory consequences of its own behavior are encoded by the sensory model. Actions that are more similar to those of the tutor will lead to sensory signals that are easier to encode and produce a higher reinforcement signal. Through this, the learner's behavior is progressively tuned to make the sensory consequences of its actions match the learned sensory model. I discuss this mechanism in the context of human language acquisition and bird song learning where similar ideas have been proposed. The suggested mechanism also offers an account for the development of mirror neurons and makes a number of predictions. Overall, it establishes a connection between principles of efficient coding, intrinsic motivations and imitation.

  11. Imitation Learning Based on an Intrinsic Motivation Mechanism for Efficient Coding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jochen eTriesch

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available A hypothesis regarding the development of imitation learning is presented that is rooted in intrinsic motivations. It is derived from a recently proposed form of intrinsically motivated learning (IML for efficient coding in active perception, wherein an agent learns to perform actions with its sense organs to facilitate efficient encoding of the sensory data. To this end, actions of the sense organs that improve the encoding of the sensory data trigger an internally generated reinforcement signal. Here it is argued that the same IML mechanism might also support the development of imitation when general actions beyond those of the sense organs are considered: The learner first observes a tutor performing a behavior and learns a model of the the behavior's sensory consequences. The learner then acts itself and receives an internally generated reinforcement signal reflecting how well the sensory consequences of its own behavior are encoded by the sensory model. Actions that are more similar to those of the tutor will lead to sensory signals that are easier to encode and produce a higher reinforcement signal. Through this, the learner's behavior is progressively tuned to make the sensory consequences of its actions match the learned sensory model. I discuss this mechanism in the context of human language acquisition and bird song learning where similar ideas have been proposed. The suggested mechanism also offers an account for the development of mirror neurons and makes a number of predictions. Overall, it establishes a connection between principles of efficient coding, intrinsic motivations and imitation.

  12. Criterion learning in rule-based categorization: simulation of neural mechanism and new data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helie, Sebastien; Ell, Shawn W; Filoteo, J Vincent; Maddox, W Todd

    2015-04-01

    In perceptual categorization, rule selection consists of selecting one or several stimulus-dimensions to be used to categorize the stimuli (e.g., categorize lines according to their length). Once a rule has been selected, criterion learning consists of defining how stimuli will be grouped using the selected dimension(s) (e.g., if the selected rule is line length, define 'long' and 'short'). Very little is known about the neuroscience of criterion learning, and most existing computational models do not provide a biological mechanism for this process. In this article, we introduce a new model of rule learning called Heterosynaptic Inhibitory Criterion Learning (HICL). HICL includes a biologically-based explanation of criterion learning, and we use new category-learning data to test key aspects of the model. In HICL, rule selective cells in prefrontal cortex modulate stimulus-response associations using pre-synaptic inhibition. Criterion learning is implemented by a new type of heterosynaptic error-driven Hebbian learning at inhibitory synapses that uses feedback to drive cell activation above/below thresholds representing ionic gating mechanisms. The model is used to account for new human categorization data from two experiments showing that: (1) changing rule criterion on a given dimension is easier if irrelevant dimensions are also changing (Experiment 1), and (2) showing that changing the relevant rule dimension and learning a new criterion is more difficult, but also facilitated by a change in the irrelevant dimension (Experiment 2). We conclude with a discussion of some of HICL's implications for future research on rule learning. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. The Study of Reinforcement Learning for Traffic Self-Adaptive Control under Multiagent Markov Game Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lun-Hui Xu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Urban traffic self-adaptive control problem is dynamic and uncertain, so the states of traffic environment are hard to be observed. Efficient agent which controls a single intersection can be discovered automatically via multiagent reinforcement learning. However, in the majority of the previous works on this approach, each agent needed perfect observed information when interacting with the environment and learned individually with less efficient coordination. This study casts traffic self-adaptive control as a multiagent Markov game problem. The design employs traffic signal control agent (TSCA for each signalized intersection that coordinates with neighboring TSCAs. A mathematical model for TSCAs’ interaction is built based on nonzero-sum markov game which has been applied to let TSCAs learn how to cooperate. A multiagent Markov game reinforcement learning approach is constructed on the basis of single-agent Q-learning. This method lets each TSCA learn to update its Q-values under the joint actions and imperfect information. The convergence of the proposed algorithm is analyzed theoretically. The simulation results show that the proposed method is convergent and effective in realistic traffic self-adaptive control setting.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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…

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Mechanisms and genetic factors underlying co-use of nicotine and alcohol or other drugs of abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cross, Sarah J; Lotfipour, Shahrdad; Leslie, Frances M

    2017-03-01

    Concurrent use of tobacco and alcohol or psychostimulants represents a major public health concern, with use of one substance influencing consumption of the other. Co-abuse of these drugs leads to substantial negative health outcomes, reduced cessation, and high economic costs, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Epidemiological data suggest that tobacco use during adolescence plays a particularly significant role. Adolescence is a sensitive period of development marked by major neurobiological maturation of brain regions critical for reward processing, learning and memory, and executive function. Nicotine exposure during this time produces a unique and long-lasting vulnerability to subsequent substance use, likely via actions at cholinergic, dopaminergic, and serotonergic systems. In this review, we discuss recent clinical and preclinical data examining the genetic factors and mechanisms underlying co-use of nicotine and alcohol or cocaine and amphetamines. We evaluate the critical role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors throughout, and emphasize the dearth of preclinical studies assessing concurrent drug exposure. We stress important age and sex differences in drug responses, and highlight a brief, low-dose nicotine exposure paradigm that may better model early use of tobacco products. The escalating use of e-cigarettes among youth necessitates a closer look at the consequences of early adolescent nicotine exposure on subsequent alcohol and drug abuse.

  1. Hypothalamic corticotropin-releasing factor is centrally involved in learning under moderate stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Morgan; Chen, Alon; Richter-Levin, Gal

    2013-08-01

    The corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) neuropeptide is found to have a pivotal role in the regulation of the behavioral and neuroendocrine responses to stressful challenges. Here, we studied the involvement of the hypothalamic CRF in learning under stressful conditions. We have used a site-specific viral approach to knockdown (KD) CRF expression in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN). The two-way shuttle avoidance (TWSA) task was chosen to assess learning and memory under stressful conditions. Control animals learned to shuttle from one side to the other to avoid electrical foot shock by responding to a tone. Novel object and social recognition tasks were used to assess memory under less stressful conditions. KD of PVN-CRF expression decreased the number of avoidance responses in a TWSA session under moderate (0.8 mA), but not strong (1.5 mA), stimulus intensity compared to control rats. On the other hand, KD of PVN-CRF had no effect on memory performance in the less stressful novel object or social recognition tasks. Interestingly, basal or stress-induced corticosterone levels in CRF KD rats were not significantly different from controls. Taken together, the data suggest that the observed impairment was not a result of alteration in HPA axis activity, but rather due to reduced PVN-CRF activity on other brain areas. We propose that hypothalamic CRF is centrally involved in learning under moderate stressful challenge. Under 'basal' (less stressful) conditions or when the intensity of the stress is more demanding, central CRF ceases to be the determinant factor, as was indicated by performances in the TWSA with higher stimulus intensity or in the less stressful tasks of object and social recognition.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Molecular mechanism of acrylamide neurotoxicity: lessons learned from organic chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LoPachin, Richard M; Gavin, Terrence

    2012-12-01

    Acrylamide (ACR) produces cumulative neurotoxicity in exposed humans and laboratory animals through a direct inhibitory effect on presynaptic function. In this review, we delineate how knowledge of chemistry provided an unprecedented understanding of the ACR neurotoxic mechanism. We also show how application of the hard and soft, acids and bases (HSAB) theory led to the recognition that the α,β-unsaturated carbonyl structure of ACR is a soft electrophile that preferentially forms covalent bonds with soft nucleophiles. In vivo proteomic and in chemico studies demonstrated that ACR formed covalent adducts with highly nucleophilic cysteine thiolate groups located within active sites of presynaptic proteins. Additional research showed that resulting protein inactivation disrupted nerve terminal processes and impaired neurotransmission. ACR is a type-2 alkene, a chemical class that includes structurally related electrophilic environmental pollutants (e.g., acrolein) and endogenous mediators of cellular oxidative stress (e.g., 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal). Members of this chemical family produce toxicity via a common molecular mechanism. Although individual environmental concentrations might not be toxicologically relevant, exposure to an ambient mixture of type-2 alkene pollutants could pose a significant risk to human health. Furthermore, environmentally derived type-2 alkenes might act synergistically with endogenously generated unsaturated aldehydes to amplify cellular damage and thereby accelerate human disease/injury processes that involve oxidative stress. These possibilities have substantial implications for environmental risk assessment and were realized through an understanding of ACR adduct chemistry. The approach delineated here can be broadly applied because many toxicants of different chemical classes are electrophiles that produce toxicity by interacting with cellular proteins.

  5. [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.

  6. Chronic Nicotine Mitigates Aberrant Inhibitory Motor Learning Induced by Motor Experience under Dopamine Deficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koranda, Jessica L; Krok, Anne C; Xu, Jian; Contractor, Anis; McGehee, Daniel S; Beeler, Jeff A; Zhuang, Xiaoxi

    2016-05-11

    Although dopamine receptor antagonism has long been associated with impairments in motor performance, more recent studies have shown that dopamine D2 receptor (D2R) antagonism, paired with a motor task, not only impairs motor performance concomitant with the pharmacodynamics of the drug, but also impairs future motor performance once antagonism has been relieved. We have termed this phenomenon "aberrant motor learning" and have suggested that it may contribute to motor symptoms in movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease (PD). Here, we show that chronic nicotine (cNIC), but not acute nicotine, treatment mitigates the acquisition of D2R-antagonist-induced aberrant motor learning in mice. Although cNIC mitigates D2R-mediated aberrant motor learning, cNIC has no effect on D1R-mediated motor learning. β2-containing nicotinic receptors in dopamine neurons likely mediate the protective effect of cNIC against aberrant motor learning, because selective deletion of β2 nicotinic subunits in dopamine neurons reduced D2R-mediated aberrant motor learning. Finally, both cNIC treatment and β2 subunit deletion blunted postsynaptic responses to D2R antagonism. These results suggest that a chronic decrease in function or a downregulation of β2-containing nicotinic receptors protects the striatal network against aberrant plasticity and aberrant motor learning induced by motor experience under dopamine deficiency. Increasingly, aberrant plasticity and aberrant learning are recognized as contributing to the development and progression of movement disorders. Here, we show that chronic nicotine (cNIC) treatment or specific deletion of β2 nicotinic receptor subunits in dopamine neurons mitigates aberrant motor learning induced by dopamine D2 receptor (D2R) blockade in mice. Moreover, both manipulations also reduced striatal dopamine release and blunt postsynaptic responses to D2R antagonists. These results suggest that chronic downregulation of function and/or receptor

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Strategies for adding adaptive learning mechanisms to rule-based diagnostic expert systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stclair, D. C.; Sabharwal, C. L.; Bond, W. E.; Hacke, Keith

    1988-01-01

    Rule-based diagnostic expert systems can be used to perform many of the diagnostic chores necessary in today's complex space systems. These expert systems typically take a set of symptoms as input and produce diagnostic advice as output. The primary objective of such expert systems is to provide accurate and comprehensive advice which can be used to help return the space system in question to nominal operation. The development and maintenance of diagnostic expert systems is time and labor intensive since the services of both knowledge engineer(s) and domain expert(s) are required. The use of adaptive learning mechanisms to increment evaluate and refine rules promises to reduce both time and labor costs associated with such systems. This paper describes the basic adaptive learning mechanisms of strengthening, weakening, generalization, discrimination, and discovery. Next basic strategies are discussed for adding these learning mechanisms to rule-based diagnostic expert systems. These strategies support the incremental evaluation and refinement of rules in the knowledge base by comparing the set of advice given by the expert system (A) with the correct diagnosis (C). Techniques are described for selecting those rules in the in the knowledge base which should participate in adaptive learning. The strategies presented may be used with a wide variety of learning algorithms. Further, these strategies are applicable to a large number of rule-based diagnostic expert systems. They may be used to provide either immediate or deferred updating of the knowledge base.

  10. 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.

  11. A Flexible Mechanism of Rule Selection Enables Rapid Feature-Based Reinforcement Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balcarras, Matthew; Womelsdorf, Thilo

    2016-01-01

    Learning in a new environment is influenced by prior learning and experience. Correctly applying a rule that maps a context to stimuli, actions, and outcomes enables faster learning and better outcomes compared to relying on strategies for learning that are ignorant of task structure. However, it is often difficult to know when and how to apply learned rules in new contexts. In our study we explored how subjects employ different strategies for learning the relationship between stimulus features and positive outcomes in a probabilistic task context. We test the hypothesis that task naive subjects will show enhanced learning of feature specific reward associations by switching to the use of an abstract rule that associates stimuli by feature type and restricts selections to that dimension. To test this hypothesis we designed a decision making task where subjects receive probabilistic feedback following choices between pairs of stimuli. In the task, trials are grouped in two contexts by blocks, where in one type of block there is no unique relationship between a specific feature dimension (stimulus shape or color) and positive outcomes, and following an un-cued transition, alternating blocks have outcomes that are linked to either stimulus shape or color. Two-thirds of subjects (n = 22/32) exhibited behavior that was best fit by a hierarchical feature-rule model. Supporting the prediction of the model mechanism these subjects showed significantly enhanced performance in feature-reward blocks, and rapidly switched their choice strategy to using abstract feature rules when reward contingencies changed. Choice behavior of other subjects (n = 10/32) was fit by a range of alternative reinforcement learning models representing strategies that do not benefit from applying previously learned rules. In summary, these results show that untrained subjects are capable of flexibly shifting between behavioral rules by leveraging simple model-free reinforcement learning and context

  12. Virtual experimentation in electromagnetism, mechanics and optics: web-based learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escobar, J. H.; Sánchez, H.; Beltrán, J. R.; De la Hoz, J.; González, J. D.

    2016-02-01

    This paper present novel virtual laboratories of electromagnetism, mechanics and optics to be used in the teaching of physic for the students as well as to the teacher in the classroom. The model used is friendly with the users and also is responsible for displaying data and its manipulation. The Vista/model, implements the behavior of the view to respond to user actions and expose model data in a way that is easy to use bindings, it is the mechanisms by which we can link the elements of the user interface objects containing the information to be displayed in the view. During the process of application of virtual laboratories the students shown a increasing ability to learn this specifics physics topics using a Web-based learning environment and a guide of work with the virtual laboratories framed in the meaningful learning pedagogical model.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Learning mechanisms in multidisciplinary teamwork with real customers and open-ended problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heikkinen, Juho; Isomöttönen, Ville

    2015-11-01

    Recently, there has been a trend towards adding a multidisciplinary or multicultural element to traditional monodisciplinary project courses in computing and engineering. In this article, we examine the implications of multidisciplinarity for students' learning experiences during a one-semester project course for real customers. We use a qualitative research approach and base our analysis on students' learning reports on three instances of a project course titled Multidisciplinary working life project. The main contribution of this article is the unified theoretical picture of the learning mechanisms stemming from multidisciplinarity. Our main conclusions are that (1) students generally have a positive view of multidisciplinarity; (2) multidisciplinary teams enable students to better identify their own expertise, which leads to increased occupational identity; and (3) learning experiences are not fixed, as team spirit and student attitude play an important role in how students react to challenging situations arising from introduction of the multidisciplinarity.

  17. Introducing Innovative Approaches to Learning in Fluid Mechanics: A Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gynnild, Vidar; Myrhaug, Dag; Pettersen, Bjornar

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of the current article is to examine the impact of laboratory demonstrations and computer visualizations on learning in a third-year fluid mechanics course at Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). As a first step, on entering the course, students were exposed to a laboratory demonstration focusing on the nature of…

  18. Students' Learning Strategies with Multiple Representations: Explanations of the Human Breathing Mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Won, Mihye; Yoon, Heojeong; Treagust, David F.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to understand how students utilized multiple representations to learn and explain science concepts, in this case the human breathing mechanism. The study was conducted with Grade 11 students in a human biology class. Semistructured interviews and a two-tier diagnostic test were administered to evaluate students'…

  19. Essential Features of Serious Games Design in Higher Education: Linking Learning Attributes to Game Mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lameras, Petros; Arnab, Sylvester; Dunwell, Ian; Stewart, Craig; Clarke, Samantha; Petridis, Panagiotis

    2017-01-01

    This paper consolidates evidence and material from a range of specialist and disciplinary fields to provide an evidence-based review and synthesis on the design and use of serious games in higher education. Search terms identified 165 papers reporting conceptual and empirical evidence on how learning attributes and game mechanics may be planned,…

  20. Dense Neighborhoods and Mechanisms of Learning: Evidence from Children with Phonological Delay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gierut, Judith A.; Morrisette, Michele L.

    2015-01-01

    There is a noted advantage of dense neighborhoods in language acquisition, but the learning mechanism that drives the effect is not well understood. Two hypotheses--long-term auditory word priming and phonological working memory--have been advanced in the literature as viable accounts. These were evaluated in two treatment studies enrolling twelve…

  1. Assessing Cognitive Load Theory to Improve Student Learning for Mechanical Engineers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Impelluso, Thomas J.

    2009-01-01

    A computer programming class for students of mechanical engineering was redesigned and assessed: Cognitive Load Theory was used to redesign the content; online technologies were used to redesign the delivery. Student learning improved and the dropout rate was reduced. This article reports on both attitudinal and objective assessment: comparing…

  2. Learning to Recognize Ego Defense Mechanisms: Results of a Structured Teaching Experience for Psychiatric Residents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beresford, Thomas P.

    2005-01-01

    Objective: Ego defense mechanism (EDM) recognition can offer a powerful and practical tool in clinical psychiatry. However, recognition skill learning can be difficult to assess and may account for the lack of formal EDM recognition training in residency courses. Method: This study hypothesized that mean test scores would increase significantly…

  3. Using Game Mechanics to Measure What Students Learn from Programming Games

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denner, Jill; Werner, Linda; Campe, Shannon; Ortiz, Eloy

    2014-01-01

    Despite the growing popularity of teaching children to program games, little is known about the benefits for learning. In this article, the authors propose that game mechanics can be used as a window into how the children are thinking and describe a strategy for using them to analyze students' games. The study involved sixty 10-14 year old…

  4. 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.

  5. Surprise responses in the human brain demonstrate statistical learning under high concurrent cognitive demand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrido, Marta Isabel; Teng, Chee Leong James; Taylor, Jeremy Alexander; Rowe, Elise Genevieve; Mattingley, Jason Brett

    2016-06-01

    The ability to learn about regularities in the environment and to make predictions about future events is fundamental for adaptive behaviour. We have previously shown that people can implicitly encode statistical regularities and detect violations therein, as reflected in neuronal responses to unpredictable events that carry a unique prediction error signature. In the real world, however, learning about regularities will often occur in the context of competing cognitive demands. Here we asked whether learning of statistical regularities is modulated by concurrent cognitive load. We compared electroencephalographic metrics associated with responses to pure-tone sounds with frequencies sampled from narrow or wide Gaussian distributions. We showed that outliers evoked a larger response than those in the centre of the stimulus distribution (i.e., an effect of surprise) and that this difference was greater for physically identical outliers in the narrow than in the broad distribution. These results demonstrate an early neurophysiological marker of the brain's ability to implicitly encode complex statistical structure in the environment. Moreover, we manipulated concurrent cognitive load by having participants perform a visual working memory task while listening to these streams of sounds. We again observed greater prediction error responses in the narrower distribution under both low and high cognitive load. Furthermore, there was no reliable reduction in prediction error magnitude under high-relative to low-cognitive load. Our findings suggest that statistical learning is not a capacity limited process, and that it proceeds automatically even when cognitive resources are taxed by concurrent demands.

  6. Persistent and stable biases in spatial learning mechanisms predict navigational style.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furman, Andrew J; Clements-Stephens, Amy M; Marchette, Steven A; Shelton, Amy L

    2014-12-01

    A wealth of evidence in rodents and humans supports the central roles of two learning systems--hippocampal place learning and striatal response learning--in the formation of spatial representations to support navigation. Individual differences in the ways that these mechanisms are engaged during initial encoding and subsequent navigation may provide a powerful framework for explaining the wide range of variability found in the strategies and solutions that make up human navigational styles. Previous work has revealed that activation in the hippocampal and striatal networks during learning could predict navigational style. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate the relative activations in these systems during both initial encoding and the act of dynamic navigation in a learned environment. Participants learned a virtual environment and were tested on subsequent navigation to targets within the environment. We observed that a given individual had a consistent balance of memory system engagement across both initial encoding and subsequent navigation, a balance that successfully predicted the participants' tendencies to use novel shortcuts versus familiar paths during dynamic navigation. This was further supported by the observation that the activation during subsequent retrieval was not dependent on the type of solution used on a given trial. Taken together, our results suggest a model in which the place- and response-learning systems are present in parallel to support a variety of navigational behaviors, but stable biases in the engagement of these systems influence what solutions might be available for any given individual.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. An experimental study on cumulative prospect theory learning model of travelers’ dynamic mode choice under uncertainty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chao Yang

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we examined travelers’ dynamic mode choice behavior under travel time variability. We found travelers’ inconsistent risk attitudes through a binary mode choice experiment. Although the results deviated from the traditional utility maximization theory and could not be explained by the payoff variability effect, they could be well captured in a cumulative prospect theory (CPT framework. After considering the imperfect memory effect, we found that the prediction ability of the cumulative prospect theory learning (CPTL model could be significantly improved. The experimental results were also compared with the CPTL model and the reinforcement learning (REL model. This study empirically showed the potential of alternative theories to better capture travelers’ day-to-day mode choice behavior under uncertainty. A new definition of willingness to pay (WTP in a CPT framework was provided to explicitly consider travelers’ perceived value increases in travel time.

  10. Learning for Semantic Parsing with Kernels under Various Forms of Supervision

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-08-01

    is because Turkish has larger number of unique tokens (36% more than English ) due to its complex agglunative morphology , which makes learning from its...Semantic Parsing with Kernels under Various Forms of Supervision 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) 5d...Subsequence Kernel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 2.3 Related Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 2.3.1 Syntax -based Semantic

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. High Gain Antenna System Deployment Mechanism Integration, Characterization, and Lessons Learned

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parong, Fil; Russell, Blair; Garcen, Walter; Rose, Chris; Johnson, Chris; Huber, Craig

    2014-01-01

    The integration and deployment testing of the High Gain Antenna System for the Global Precipitation Measurement mission is summarized. The HGAS deployment mechanism is described. The gravity negation system configuration and its influence on vertical, ground-based, deployment tests are presented with test data and model predictions. A focus is made on the late discovery and resolution of a potentially mission degrading deployment interference condition. The interaction of the flight deployment mechanism, gravity negation mechanism, and use of dynamic modeling is described and lessons learned presented.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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 ...

  3. 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...

  4. 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...

  5. 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.

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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

  8. 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–...

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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...

  15. [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.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Quantum Interactive Learning Tutorial on the Double-Slit Experiment to Improve Student Understanding of Quantum Mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayer, Ryan; Maries, Alexandru; Singh, Chandralekha

    2017-01-01

    Learning quantum mechanics is challenging, even for upper-level undergraduate and graduate students. Research-validated interactive tutorials that build on students' prior knowledge can be useful tools to enhance student learning. We have been investigating student difficulties with quantum mechanics pertaining to the double-slit experiment in…

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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...

  2. Failing to learn from negative prediction errors: Obesity is associated with alterations in a fundamental neural learning mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathar, David; Neumann, Jane; Villringer, Arno; Horstmann, Annette

    2017-10-01

    Prediction errors (PEs) encode the difference between expected and actual action outcomes in the brain via dopaminergic modulation. Integration of these learning signals ensures efficient behavioral adaptation. Obesity has recently been linked to altered dopaminergic fronto-striatal circuits, thus implying impairments in cognitive domains that rely on its integrity. 28 obese and 30 lean human participants performed an implicit stimulus-response learning paradigm inside an fMRI scanner. Computational modeling and psycho-physiological interaction (PPI) analysis was utilized for assessing PE-related learning and associated functional connectivity. We show that human obesity is associated with insufficient incorporation of negative PEs into behavioral adaptation even in a non-food context, suggesting differences in a fundamental neural learning mechanism. Obese subjects were less efficient in using negative PEs to improve implicit learning performance, despite proper coding of PEs in striatum. We further observed lower functional coupling between ventral striatum and supplementary motor area in obese subjects subsequent to negative PEs. Importantly, strength of functional coupling predicted task performance and negative PE utilization. These findings show that obesity is linked to insufficient behavioral adaptation specifically in response to negative PEs, and to associated alterations in function and connectivity within the fronto-striatal system. Recognition of neural differences as a central characteristic of obesity hopefully paves the way to rethink established intervention strategies: Differential behavioral sensitivity to negative and positive PEs should be considered when designing intervention programs. Measures relying on penalization of unwanted behavior may prove less effective in obese subjects than alternative approaches. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. 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)

  4. Learning with multiple representations: an example of a revision lesson in mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Darren; Poo, Sng Peng; Eng Hock, Ng; Loo Kang, Wee

    2011-03-01

    We describe an example of learning with multiple representations in an A-level revision lesson on mechanics. The context of the problem involved the motion of a ball thrown vertically upwards in air and studying how the associated physical quantities changed during its flight. Different groups of students were assigned to look at the ball's motion using various representations: motion diagrams, vector diagrams, free-body diagrams, verbal description, equations and graphs, drawn against time as well as against displacement. Overall, feedback from students about the lesson was positive. We further discuss the benefits of using computer simulation to support and extend student learning.

  5. Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis Modulates Fear Learning through Associative and Nonassociative Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, Dong-oh; Carillo, Mary Ann; Chih-Hsiung Lim, Sean; Tanaka, Kenji F.

    2015-01-01

    Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is believed to support hippocampus-dependent learning and emotional regulation. These putative functions of adult neurogenesis have typically been studied in isolation, and little is known about how they interact to produce adaptive behavior. We used trace fear conditioning as a model system to elucidate mechanisms through which adult hippocampal neurogenesis modulates processing of aversive experience. To achieve a specific ablation of neurogenesis, we generated transgenic mice that express herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase specifically in neural progenitors and immature neurons. Intracerebroventricular injection of the prodrug ganciclovir caused a robust suppression of neurogenesis without suppressing gliogenesis. Neurogenesis ablation via this method or targeted x-irradiation caused an increase in context conditioning in trace but not delay fear conditioning. Data suggest that this phenotype represents opposing effects of neurogenesis ablation on associative and nonassociative components of fear learning. Arrest of neurogenesis sensitizes mice to nonassociative effects of fear conditioning, as evidenced by increased anxiety-like behavior in the open field after (but not in the absence of) fear conditioning. In addition, arrest of neurogenesis impairs associative trace conditioning, but this impairment can be masked by nonassociative fear. The results suggest that adult neurogenesis modulates emotional learning via two distinct but opposing mechanisms: it supports associative trace conditioning while also buffering against the generalized fear and anxiety caused by fear conditioning. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The role of adult hippocampal neurogenesis in fear learning is controversial, with some studies suggesting neurogenesis is needed for aspects of fear learning and others suggesting it is dispensable. We generated transgenic mice in which neural progenitors can be selectively and inducibly ablated. Our data suggest that adult

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Under-represented students' engagement in secondary science learning: A non-equivalent control group design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vann-Hamilton, Joy J.

    Problem. A significant segment of the U.S. population, under-represented students, is under-engaged or disengaged in secondary science education. International and national assessments and various research studies illuminate the problem and/or the disparity between students' aspirations in science and the means they have to achieve them. To improve engagement and address inequities among these students, more contemporary and/or inclusive pedagogy is recommended. More specifically, multicultural science education has been suggested as a potential strategy for increased equity so that all learners have access to and are readily engaged in quality science education. While multicultural science education emphasizes the integration of students' backgrounds and experiences with science learning , multimedia has been suggested as a way to integrate the fundamentals of multicultural education into learning for increased engagement. In addition, individual characteristics such as race, sex, academic track and grades were considered. Therefore, this study examined the impact of multicultural science education, multimedia, and individual characteristics on under-represented students' engagement in secondary science. Method. The Under-represented Students Engagement in Science Survey (USESS), an adaptation of the High School Survey of Student Engagement, was used with 76 high-school participants. The USESS was used to collect pretest and posttest data concerning their types and levels of student engagement. Levels of engagement were measured with Strongly Agree ranked as 5, down to Strongly Disagree ranked at 1. Participants provided this feedback prior to and after having interacted with either the multicultural or the non-multicultural version of the multimedia science curriculum. Descriptive statistics for the study's participants and the survey items, as well as Cronbach's alpha coefficient for internal consistency reliability with respect to the survey subscales, were

  10. 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%.

  11. 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.

  12. Neural mechanisms of reinforcement learning in unmedicated patients with major depressive disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothkirch, Marcus; Tonn, Jonas; Köhler, Stephan; Sterzer, Philipp

    2017-04-01

    According to current concepts, major depressive disorder is strongly related to dysfunctional neural processing of motivational information, entailing impairments in reinforcement learning. While computational modelling can reveal the precise nature of neural learning signals, it has not been used to study learning-related neural dysfunctions in unmedicated patients with major depressive disorder so far. We thus aimed at comparing the neural coding of reward and punishment prediction errors, representing indicators of neural learning-related processes, between unmedicated patients with major depressive disorder and healthy participants. To this end, a group of unmedicated patients with major depressive disorder (n = 28) and a group of age- and sex-matched healthy control participants (n = 30) completed an instrumental learning task involving monetary gains and losses during functional magnetic resonance imaging. The two groups did not differ in their learning performance. Patients and control participants showed the same level of prediction error-related activity in the ventral striatum and the anterior insula. In contrast, neural coding of reward prediction errors in the medial orbitofrontal cortex was reduced in patients. Moreover, neural reward prediction error signals in the medial orbitofrontal cortex and ventral striatum showed negative correlations with anhedonia severity. Using a standard instrumental learning paradigm we found no evidence for an overall impairment of reinforcement learning in medication-free patients with major depressive disorder. Importantly, however, the attenuated neural coding of reward in the medial orbitofrontal cortex and the relation between anhedonia and reduced reward prediction error-signalling in the medial orbitofrontal cortex and ventral striatum likely reflect an impairment in experiencing pleasure from rewarding events as a key mechanism of anhedonia in major depressive disorder. © The Author (2017). Published by Oxford

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Attentional learning and flexible induction: how mundane mechanisms give rise to smart behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sloutsky, Vladimir M; Fisher, Anna V

    2008-01-01

    Young children often exhibit flexible behaviors relying on different kinds of information in different situations. This flexibility has been traditionally attributed to conceptual knowledge. Reported research demonstrates that flexibility can be acquired implicitly and it does not require conceptual knowledge. In Experiment 1, 4- to 5-year-olds successfully learned different context-predictor contingencies and subsequently flexibly relied on different predictors in different contexts. Experiments 2A and 2B indicated that flexible generalization stems from implicit attentional learning rather than from rule discovery, and Experiment 3 pointed to very limited strategic control over generalization behaviors in 4- to 5-year-olds. These findings indicate that mundane mechanisms grounded in associative and attentional learning may give rise to smart flexible behaviors.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Linear Analytical Solutions of Mechanical Sensitivity in Large Deflection of Unsymmetrically Layered Piezoelectric Plate under Pretension

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    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.

  3. Cellular and deafness mechanisms underlying connexin mutation induced hearing loss – A common hereditary deafness

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    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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Associative Mechanisms Allow for Social Learning and Cultural Transmission of String Pulling in an Insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alem, Sylvain; Perry, Clint J; Zhu, Xingfu; Loukola, Olli J; Ingraham, Thomas; Søvik, Eirik; Chittka, Lars

    2016-10-01

    Social insects make elaborate use of simple mechanisms to achieve seemingly complex behavior and may thus provide a unique resource to discover the basic cognitive elements required for culture, i.e., group-specific behaviors that spread from "innovators" to others in the group via social learning. We first explored whether bumblebees can learn a nonnatural object manipulation task by using string pulling to access a reward that was presented out of reach. Only a small minority "innovated" and solved the task spontaneously, but most bees were able to learn to pull a string when trained in a stepwise manner. In addition, naïve bees learnt the task by observing a trained demonstrator from a distance. Learning the behavior relied on a combination of simple associative mechanisms and trial-and-error learning and did not require "insight": naïve bees failed a "coiled-string experiment," in which they did not receive instant visual feedback of the target moving closer when tugging on the string. In cultural diffusion experiments, the skill spread rapidly from a single knowledgeable individual to the majority of a colony's foragers. We observed that there were several sequential sets ("generations") of learners, so that previously naïve observers could first acquire the technique by interacting with skilled individuals and, subsequently, themselves become demonstrators for the next "generation" of learners, so that the longevity of the skill in the population could outlast the lives of informed foragers. This suggests that, so long as animals have a basic toolkit of associative and motor learning processes, the key ingredients for the cultural spread of unusual skills are already in place and do not require sophisticated cognition.

  10. How learning analytics can early predict under-achieving students in a blended medical education course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saqr, Mohammed; Fors, Uno; Tedre, Matti

    2017-07-01

    Learning analytics (LA) is an emerging discipline that aims at analyzing students' online data in order to improve the learning process and optimize learning environments. It has yet un-explored potential in the field of medical education, which can be particularly helpful in the early prediction and identification of under-achieving students. The aim of this study was to identify quantitative markers collected from students' online activities that may correlate with students' final performance and to investigate the possibility of predicting the potential risk of a student failing or dropping out of a course. This study included 133 students enrolled in a blended medical course where they were free to use the learning management system at their will. We extracted their online activity data using database queries and Moodle plugins. Data included logins, views, forums, time, formative assessment, and communications at different points of time. Five engagement indicators were also calculated which would reflect self-regulation and engagement. Students who scored below 5% over the passing mark were considered to be potentially at risk of under-achieving. At the end of the course, we were able to predict the final grade with 63.5% accuracy, and identify 53.9% of at-risk students. Using a binary logistic model improved prediction to 80.8%. Using data recorded until the mid-course, prediction accuracy was 42.3%. The most important predictors were factors reflecting engagement of the students and the consistency of using the online resources. The analysis of students' online activities in a blended medical education course by means of LA techniques can help early predict underachieving students, and can be used as an early warning sign for timely intervention.

  11. Optimizing area under the ROC curve using semi-supervised learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shijun; Li, Diana; Petrick, Nicholas; Sahiner, Berkman; Linguraru, Marius George; Summers, Ronald M

    2015-01-01

    Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis is a standard methodology to evaluate the performance of a binary classification system. The area under the ROC curve (AUC) is a performance metric that summarizes how well a classifier separates two classes. Traditional AUC optimization techniques are supervised learning methods that utilize only labeled data (i.e., the true class is known for all data) to train the classifiers. In this work, inspired by semi-supervised and transductive learning, we propose two new AUC optimization algorithms hereby referred to as semi-supervised learning receiver operating characteristic (SSLROC) algorithms, which utilize unlabeled test samples in classifier training to maximize AUC. Unlabeled samples are incorporated into the AUC optimization process, and their ranking relationships to labeled positive and negative training samples are considered as optimization constraints. The introduced test samples will cause the learned decision boundary in a multidimensional feature space to adapt not only to the distribution of labeled training data, but also to the distribution of unlabeled test data. We formulate the semi-supervised AUC optimization problem as a semi-definite programming problem based on the margin maximization theory. The proposed methods SSLROC1 (1-norm) and SSLROC2 (2-norm) were evaluated using 34 (determined by power analysis) randomly selected datasets from the University of California, Irvine machine learning repository. Wilcoxon signed rank tests showed that the proposed methods achieved significant improvement compared with state-of-the-art methods. The proposed methods were also applied to a CT colonography dataset for colonic polyp classification and showed promising results.

  12. Optimizing area under the ROC curve using semi-supervised learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shijun; Li, Diana; Petrick, Nicholas; Sahiner, Berkman; Linguraru, Marius George; Summers, Ronald M.

    2014-01-01

    Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis is a standard methodology to evaluate the performance of a binary classification system. The area under the ROC curve (AUC) is a performance metric that summarizes how well a classifier separates two classes. Traditional AUC optimization techniques are supervised learning methods that utilize only labeled data (i.e., the true class is known for all data) to train the classifiers. In this work, inspired by semi-supervised and transductive learning, we propose two new AUC optimization algorithms hereby referred to as semi-supervised learning receiver operating characteristic (SSLROC) algorithms, which utilize unlabeled test samples in classifier training to maximize AUC. Unlabeled samples are incorporated into the AUC optimization process, and their ranking relationships to labeled positive and negative training samples are considered as optimization constraints. The introduced test samples will cause the learned decision boundary in a multidimensional feature space to adapt not only to the distribution of labeled training data, but also to the distribution of unlabeled test data. We formulate the semi-supervised AUC optimization problem as a semi-definite programming problem based on the margin maximization theory. The proposed methods SSLROC1 (1-norm) and SSLROC2 (2-norm) were evaluated using 34 (determined by power analysis) randomly selected datasets from the University of California, Irvine machine learning repository. Wilcoxon signed rank tests showed that the proposed methods achieved significant improvement compared with state-of-the-art methods. The proposed methods were also applied to a CT colonography dataset for colonic polyp classification and showed promising results.1 PMID:25395692

  13. Mechanisms behind the testing effect: an empirical investigation of retrieval practice in meaningful learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endres, Tino; Renkl, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    The testing effect-more learning by testing as compared to restudying-is a well-established finding. A typical testing procedure in the context of meaningful learning comprises a recall task after an initial study phase. Different theories refer to different mechanisms when explaining the positive effects of such recall tasks. In the context of learning from expository texts, we tested three mechanisms as suggested by a variety of prominent approaches: the elaborative-retrieval theory, the theory of transfer-appropriate processing, and the unspecific-goal perspective. We experimentally varied the type of testing task (short-answer task vs. free-recall task, both compared to a restudy task) in a within-subject design (N = 47 university students). We replicated the testing effect. We found no evidence for a transfer-appropriate processing effect or an unspecific-goal effect. The testing effect disappeared when statistically controlling for mental effort. Initially non-tested material was also fostered by testing (spreading activation effect). These findings indicate that testing helps learning when learners must invest substantial mental effort, as suggested by the elaborative retrieval theory. For educational purposes, testing tasks should be assigned that require the learners to invest substantial mental effort.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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...