WorldWideScience

Sample records for understand complex biological

  1. From structure of the complex to understanding of the biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rossmann, Michael G., E-mail: mr@purdue.edu [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Arisaka, Fumio [Graduate School and School of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 5249 Nagatsuta-cho, Yokohama 226-8501-B39 (Japan); Battisti, Anthony J.; Bowman, Valorie D.; Chipman, Paul R.; Fokine, Andrei; Hafenstein, Susan [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Kanamaru, Shuji [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Graduate School and School of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 5249 Nagatsuta-cho, Yokohama 226-8501-B39 (Japan); Kostyuchenko, Victor A. [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Mesyanzhinov, Vadim V.; Shneider, Mikhail M. [Laboratory of Molecular Bioengineering, Shemyakin-Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, 16/10 Miklukho-Maklaya Street, Moscow, 117997 (Russian Federation); Morais, Marc C.; Leiman, Petr G. [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Palermo, Laura M.; Parrish, Colin R. [James A. Baker Institute, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (United States); Xiao, Chuan [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States)

    2007-01-01

    The most extensive structural information on viruses relates to apparently icosahedral virions and is based on X-ray crystallography and on cryo-electron microscopy single-particle reconstructions. This paper concerns itself with the study of the macromolecular complexes that constitute viruses, using structural hybrid techniques. The most extensive structural information on viruses relates to apparently icosahedral virions and is based on X-ray crystallography and on cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) single-particle reconstructions. Both techniques lean heavily on imposing icosahedral symmetry, thereby obscuring any deviation from the assumed symmetry. However, tailed bacteriophages have icosahedral or prolate icosahedral heads that have one obvious unique vertex where the genome can enter for DNA packaging and exit when infecting a host cell. The presence of the tail allows cryo-EM reconstructions in which the special vertex is used to orient the head in a unique manner. Some very large dsDNA icosahedral viruses also develop special vertices thought to be required for infecting host cells. Similarly, preliminary cryo-EM data for the small ssDNA canine parvovirus complexed with receptor suggests that these viruses, previously considered to be accurately icosahedral, might have some asymmetric properties that generate one preferred receptor-binding site on the viral surface. Comparisons are made between rhinoviruses that bind receptor molecules uniformly to all 60 equivalent binding sites, canine parvovirus, which appears to have a preferred receptor-binding site, and bacteriophage T4, which gains major biological advantages on account of its unique vertex and tail organelle.

  2. From structure of the complex to understanding of the biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rossmann, Michael G.; Arisaka, Fumio; Battisti, Anthony J.; Bowman, Valorie D.; Chipman, Paul R.; Fokine, Andrei; Hafenstein, Susan; Kanamaru, Shuji; Kostyuchenko, Victor A.; Mesyanzhinov, Vadim V.; Shneider, Mikhail M.; Morais, Marc C.; Leiman, Petr G.; Palermo, Laura M.; Parrish, Colin R.; Xiao, Chuan

    2007-01-01

    The most extensive structural information on viruses relates to apparently icosahedral virions and is based on X-ray crystallography and on cryo-electron microscopy single-particle reconstructions. This paper concerns itself with the study of the macromolecular complexes that constitute viruses, using structural hybrid techniques. The most extensive structural information on viruses relates to apparently icosahedral virions and is based on X-ray crystallography and on cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) single-particle reconstructions. Both techniques lean heavily on imposing icosahedral symmetry, thereby obscuring any deviation from the assumed symmetry. However, tailed bacteriophages have icosahedral or prolate icosahedral heads that have one obvious unique vertex where the genome can enter for DNA packaging and exit when infecting a host cell. The presence of the tail allows cryo-EM reconstructions in which the special vertex is used to orient the head in a unique manner. Some very large dsDNA icosahedral viruses also develop special vertices thought to be required for infecting host cells. Similarly, preliminary cryo-EM data for the small ssDNA canine parvovirus complexed with receptor suggests that these viruses, previously considered to be accurately icosahedral, might have some asymmetric properties that generate one preferred receptor-binding site on the viral surface. Comparisons are made between rhinoviruses that bind receptor molecules uniformly to all 60 equivalent binding sites, canine parvovirus, which appears to have a preferred receptor-binding site, and bacteriophage T4, which gains major biological advantages on account of its unique vertex and tail organelle

  3. Using chemistry and microfluidics to understand the spatial dynamics of complex biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kastrup, Christian J; Runyon, Matthew K; Lucchetta, Elena M; Price, Jessica M; Ismagilov, Rustem F

    2008-04-01

    Understanding the spatial dynamics of biochemical networks is both fundamentally important for understanding life at the systems level and also has practical implications for medicine, engineering, biology, and chemistry. Studies at the level of individual reactions provide essential information about the function, interactions, and localization of individual molecular species and reactions in a network. However, analyzing the spatial dynamics of complex biochemical networks at this level is difficult. Biochemical networks are nonequilibrium systems containing dozens to hundreds of reactions with nonlinear and time-dependent interactions, and these interactions are influenced by diffusion, flow, and the relative values of state-dependent kinetic parameters. To achieve an overall understanding of the spatial dynamics of a network and the global mechanisms that drive its function, networks must be analyzed as a whole, where all of the components and influential parameters of a network are simultaneously considered. Here, we describe chemical concepts and microfluidic tools developed for network-level investigations of the spatial dynamics of these networks. Modular approaches can be used to simplify these networks by separating them into modules, and simple experimental or computational models can be created by replacing each module with a single reaction. Microfluidics can be used to implement these models as well as to analyze and perturb the complex network itself with spatial control on the micrometer scale. We also describe the application of these network-level approaches to elucidate the mechanisms governing the spatial dynamics of two networkshemostasis (blood clotting) and early patterning of the Drosophila embryo. To investigate the dynamics of the complex network of hemostasis, we simplified the network by using a modular mechanism and created a chemical model based on this mechanism by using microfluidics. Then, we used the mechanism and the model to

  4. Using multi-criteria analysis of simulation models to understand complex biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maureen C. Kennedy; E. David. Ford

    2011-01-01

    Scientists frequently use computer-simulation models to help solve complex biological problems. Typically, such models are highly integrated, they produce multiple outputs, and standard methods of model analysis are ill suited for evaluating them. We show how multi-criteria optimization with Pareto optimality allows for model outputs to be compared to multiple system...

  5. Improving biological understanding and complex trait prediction by integrating prior information in genomic feature models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Edwards, Stefan McKinnon

    externally founded information, such as KEGG pathways, Gene Ontology gene sets, or genomic features, and estimate the joint contribution of the genetic variants within these sets to complex trait phenotypes. The analysis of complex trait phenotypes is hampered by the myriad of genes that control the trait...

  6. The value of mechanistic biophysical information for systems-level understanding of complex biological processes such as cytokinesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pollard, Thomas D

    2014-12-02

    This review illustrates the value of quantitative information including concentrations, kinetic constants and equilibrium constants in modeling and simulating complex biological processes. Although much has been learned about some biological systems without these parameter values, they greatly strengthen mechanistic accounts of dynamical systems. The analysis of muscle contraction is a classic example of the value of combining an inventory of the molecules, atomic structures of the molecules, kinetic constants for the reactions, reconstitutions with purified proteins and theoretical modeling to account for the contraction of whole muscles. A similar strategy is now being used to understand the mechanism of cytokinesis using fission yeast as a favorable model system. Copyright © 2014 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Understanding pathologic variants of renal cell carcinoma: distilling therapeutic opportunities from biologic complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuch, Brian; Amin, Ali; Armstrong, Andrew J; Eble, John N; Ficarra, Vincenzo; Lopez-Beltran, Antonio; Martignoni, Guido; Rini, Brian I; Kutikov, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Once believed to represent a uniform malignant phenotype, renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is now viewed as a diverse group of cancers that arise from the nephron. To review the pathologic characteristics, clinical behavior, molecular biology, and systemic therapy options of recognized RCC histologic subtypes. A systematic review of English-language articles was performed using the Medline and Web of Science databases. Manuscripts were selected with consensus of the coauthors and evaluated using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) criteria. The major findings of the evaluated manuscripts are discussed with an emphasis on the description of the pathologic features, clinical behavior, prognosis, and therapeutic strategies. Classification schemes for kidney cancer have undergone dramatic changes over the past two decades. Improvements in these classification schemes are important, as pathologic variants differ not only in disease biology, but also in clinical behavior, prognosis, and response to systemic therapy. In the era of genomic medicine, further refinements in characterization of RCC subtypes will be critical to the progress of this burgeoning clinical space. Kidney cancer can be subdivided into related but different cancers that arise from the kidney's tubules. In this article we review current classifications for kidney cancer, discuss their characteristics, and provide an overview of each subtype's clinical behavior and treatment. We stress that each subtype harbors unique biology and thus responds differently to available treatment strategies. Copyright © 2014 European Association of Urology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Understanding the addiction cycle: a complex biology with distinct contributions of genotype vs. sex at each stage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilhelm, C J; Hashimoto, J G; Roberts, M L; Sonmez, M K; Wiren, K M

    2014-10-24

    Ethanol abuse can lead to addiction, brain damage and premature death. The cycle of alcohol addiction has been described as a composite consisting of three stages: intoxication, withdrawal and craving/abstinence. There is evidence for contributions of both genotype and sex to alcoholism, but an understanding of the biological underpinnings is limited. Utilizing both sexes of genetic animal models with highly divergent alcohol withdrawal severity, Withdrawal Seizure-Resistant (WSR) and Withdrawal Seizure-Prone (WSP) mice, the distinct contributions of genotype/phenotype and of sex during addiction stages on neuroadaptation were characterized. Transcriptional profiling was performed to identify expression changes as a consequence of chronic intoxication in the medial prefrontal cortex. Significant expression differences were identified on a single platform and tracked over a behaviorally relevant time course that covered each stage of alcohol addiction; i.e., after chronic intoxication, during peak withdrawal, and after a defined period of abstinence. Females were more sensitive to ethanol with higher fold expression differences. Bioinformatics showed a strong effect of sex on the data structure of expression profiles during chronic intoxication and at peak withdrawal irrespective of genetic background. However, during abstinence, differences were observed instead between the lines/phenotypes irrespective of sex. Confirmation of identified pathways showed distinct inflammatory signaling following intoxication at peak withdrawal, with a pro-inflammatory phenotype in females but overall suppression of immune signaling in males. Combined, these results suggest that each stage of the addiction cycle is influenced differentially by sex vs. genetic background and support the development of stage- and sex-specific therapies for alcohol withdrawal and the maintenance of sobriety. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  9. Understanding Biological Regulation Through Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bashor, Caleb J; Collins, James J

    2018-03-16

    Engineering synthetic gene regulatory circuits proceeds through iterative cycles of design, building, and testing. Initial circuit designs must rely on often-incomplete models of regulation established by fields of reductive inquiry-biochemistry and molecular and systems biology. As differences in designed and experimentally observed circuit behavior are inevitably encountered, investigated, and resolved, each turn of the engineering cycle can force a resynthesis in understanding of natural network function. Here, we outline research that uses the process of gene circuit engineering to advance biological discovery. Synthetic gene circuit engineering research has not only refined our understanding of cellular regulation but furnished biologists with a toolkit that can be directed at natural systems to exact precision manipulation of network structure. As we discuss, using circuit engineering to predictively reorganize, rewire, and reconstruct cellular regulation serves as the ultimate means of testing and understanding how cellular phenotype emerges from systems-level network function. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Biophysics Volume 47 is May 20, 2018. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  10. Use of biological priors enhances understanding of genetic architecture and genomic prediction of complex traits within and between dairy cattle breeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, Lingzhao; Sahana, Goutam; Ma, Peipei; Su, Guosheng; Yu, Ying; Zhang, Shengli; Lund, Mogens Sandø; Sørensen, Peter

    2017-08-10

    A better understanding of the genetic architecture underlying complex traits (e.g., the distribution of causal variants and their effects) may aid in the genomic prediction. Here, we hypothesized that the genomic variants of complex traits might be enriched in a subset of genomic regions defined by genes grouped on the basis of "Gene Ontology" (GO), and that incorporating this independent biological information into genomic prediction models might improve their predictive ability. Four complex traits (i.e., milk, fat and protein yields, and mastitis) together with imputed sequence variants in Holstein (HOL) and Jersey (JER) cattle were analysed. We first carried out a post-GWAS analysis in a HOL training population to assess the degree of enrichment of the association signals in the gene regions defined by each GO term. We then extended the genomic best linear unbiased prediction model (GBLUP) to a genomic feature BLUP (GFBLUP) model, including an additional genomic effect quantifying the joint effect of a group of variants located in a genomic feature. The GBLUP model using a single random effect assumes that all genomic variants contribute to the genomic relationship equally, whereas GFBLUP attributes different weights to the individual genomic relationships in the prediction equation based on the estimated genomic parameters. Our results demonstrate that the immune-relevant GO terms were more associated with mastitis than milk production, and several biologically meaningful GO terms improved the prediction accuracy with GFBLUP for the four traits, as compared with GBLUP. The improvement of the genomic prediction between breeds (the average increase across the four traits was 0.161) was more apparent than that it was within the HOL (the average increase across the four traits was 0.020). Our genomic feature modelling approaches provide a framework to simultaneously explore the genetic architecture and genomic prediction of complex traits by taking advantage of

  11. Understanding the biological underpinnings of ecohydrological processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huxman, T. E.; Scott, R. L.; Barron-Gafford, G. A.; Hamerlynck, E. P.; Jenerette, D.; Tissue, D. T.; Breshears, D. D.; Saleska, S. R.

    2012-12-01

    Climate change presents a challenge for predicting ecosystem response, as multiple factors drive both the physical and life processes happening on the land surface and their interactions result in a complex, evolving coupled system. For example, changes in surface temperature and precipitation influence near-surface hydrology through impacts on system energy balance, affecting a range of physical processes. These changes in the salient features of the environment affect biological processes and elicit responses along the hierarchy of life (biochemistry to community composition). Many of these structural or process changes can alter patterns of soil water-use and influence land surface characteristics that affect local climate. Of the many features that affect our ability to predict the future dynamics of ecosystems, it is this hierarchical response of life that creates substantial complexity. Advances in the ability to predict or understand aspects of demography help describe thresholds in coupled ecohydrological system. Disentangling the physical and biological features that underlie land surface dynamics following disturbance are allowing a better understanding of the partitioning of water in the time-course of recovery. Better predicting the timing of phenology and key seasonal events allow for a more accurate description of the full functional response of the land surface to climate. In addition, explicitly considering the hierarchical structural features of life are helping to describe complex time-dependent behavior in ecosystems. However, despite this progress, we have yet to build an ability to fully account for the generalization of the main features of living systems into models that can describe ecohydrological processes, especially acclimation, assembly and adaptation. This is unfortunate, given that many key ecosystem services are functions of these coupled co-evolutionary processes. To date, both the lack of controlled measurements and experimentation

  12. Use of biological priors enhances understanding of genetic architecture and genomic prediction of complex traits within and between dairy cattle breeds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fang, Lingzhao; Sahana, Goutam; Ma, Peipei

    2017-01-01

    sequence variants in Holstein (HOL) and Jersey (JER) cattle were analysed. We first carried out a post-GWAS analysis in a HOL training population to assess the degree of enrichment of the association signals in the gene regions defined by each GO term. We then extended the genomic best linear unbiased......BACKGROUND: A better understanding of the genetic architecture underlying complex traits (e.g., the distribution of causal variants and their effects) may aid in the genomic prediction. Here, we hypothesized that the genomic variants of complex traits might be enriched in a subset of genomic...

  13. Understanding the biology of urothelial cancer metastasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi Kobayashi

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Management of unresectable urothelial cancer (UC has been a clinical challenge for decades. While drug resistance is a key issue, precise understanding of biology of UC metastasis is another challenge for the improvement of treatment outcome of UC patients. Introduction of the cell biology concepts including epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT and cancer stemness seems to explain UC metastasis. Molecular genetics based on gene expression profiling, next generation sequencing, and explosion of non-coding RNA world has opened the door to intrinsic molecular subtyping of UC. Next steps include, based on the recently accumulated understanding, the establishment of novel disease models representing UC metastasis in various experimental platforms, particularly in vivo animal systems. Indeed, novel knowledge molecular genetics has not been fully linked to the modeling of UC metastasis. Further understanding of bladder carcinogenesis is needed particularly with regard to cell of origin related to tumor characteristics including driver gene alterations, pathological differentiations, and metastatic ability. Then we will be able to establish better disease models, which will consequently lead us to further understanding of biology and eventually the development of novel therapeutic strategies for UC metastasis.

  14. Complex biological and bio-inspired systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ecke, Robert E [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-01-01

    The understanding and characterization ofthe fundamental processes of the function of biological systems underpins many of the important challenges facing American society, from the pathology of infectious disease and the efficacy ofvaccines, to the development of materials that mimic biological functionality and deliver exceptional and novel structural and dynamic properties. These problems are fundamentally complex, involving many interacting components and poorly understood bio-chemical kinetics. We use the basic science of statistical physics, kinetic theory, cellular bio-chemistry, soft-matter physics, and information science to develop cell level models and explore the use ofbiomimetic materials. This project seeks to determine how cell level processes, such as response to mechanical stresses, chemical constituents and related gradients, and other cell signaling mechanisms, integrate and combine to create a functioning organism. The research focuses on the basic physical processes that take place at different levels ofthe biological organism: the basic role of molecular and chemical interactions are investigated, the dynamics of the DNA-molecule and its phylogenetic role are examined and the regulatory networks of complex biochemical processes are modeled. These efforts may lead to early warning algorithms ofpathogen outbreaks, new bio-sensors to detect hazards from pathomic viruses to chemical contaminants. Other potential applications include the development of efficient bio-fuel alternative-energy processes and the exploration ofnovel materials for energy usages. Finally, we use the notion of 'coarse-graining,' which is a method for averaging over less important degrees of freedom to develop computational models to predict cell function and systems-level response to disease, chemical stress, or biological pathomic agents. This project supports Energy Security, Threat Reduction, and the missions of the DOE Office of Science through its efforts to

  15. Circulating immune complexes – reviewing the biological roles in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Circulating immune complexes – reviewing the biological roles in human immune function and exercise. ... studies that have investigated CIC's following exercise and proposes that a comprehensive understanding and interpretation of immune system responses to exercise should take these complexes into consideration.

  16. Parental Understanding of Tuberous Sclerosis Complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samia, Pauline; Donald, Kirsten A; Schlegel, Birgit; Wilmshurst, Jo M

    2015-09-01

    Tuberous sclerosis complex is a genetic disorder with multisystem involvement that poses significant challenges to the affected child and family. Caregiver knowledge in the South African population has not previously been reported. A prospective study of the parents of 21 children with tuberous sclerosis complex was undertaken. Median parental age was 38 (interquartile range 34.5-45) years. Parents were randomly allocated to receive written information about the condition, or to receive verbal counseling already established in clinic. A significant difference (P = .001) was observed in the change in the mean knowledge scores for the parent group that received written information (34.2 at baseline, 51.7 at the second visit. This impact was higher in parents with an education level of at least grade 8 (P = .003). Parental understanding of tuberous sclerosis complex can be improved by provision of written information and should be routinely available in a readily understandable format. © The Author(s) 2014.

  17. Understanding Complex Construction Systems Through Modularity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Tor Clarke; Bekdik, Baris; Thuesen, Christian

    2014-01-01

    This paper develops a framework for understanding complexity in construction projects by combining theories of complexity management and modularization. The framework incorporates three dimensions of product, process, and organizational modularity with the case of gypsum wall elements. The analysis...... system, rather than a modular, although the industry forces modular organizational structures. This creates a high complexity degree caused by the non-alignment of building parts and organizations and the frequent swapping of modules....... finds that the main driver of complexity is the fragmentation of the design and production, which causes the production modules to construct and install new product types and variants for each project as the designers are swapped for every project. The many interfaces are characteristics of an integral...

  18. Towards the understanding of network information processing in biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Vijay

    Living organisms perform incredibly well in detecting a signal present in the environment. This information processing is achieved near optimally and quite reliably, even though the sources of signals are highly variable and complex. The work in the last few decades has given us a fair understanding of how individual signal processing units like neurons and cell receptors process signals, but the principles of collective information processing on biological networks are far from clear. Information processing in biological networks, like the brain, metabolic circuits, cellular-signaling circuits, etc., involves complex interactions among a large number of units (neurons, receptors). The combinatorially large number of states such a system can exist in makes it impossible to study these systems from the first principles, starting from the interactions between the basic units. The principles of collective information processing on such complex networks can be identified using coarse graining approaches. This could provide insights into the organization and function of complex biological networks. Here I study models of biological networks using continuum dynamics, renormalization, maximum likelihood estimation and information theory. Such coarse graining approaches identify features that are essential for certain processes performed by underlying biological networks. We find that long-range connections in the brain allow for global scale feature detection in a signal. These also suppress the noise and remove any gaps present in the signal. Hierarchical organization with long-range connections leads to large-scale connectivity at low synapse numbers. Time delays can be utilized to separate a mixture of signals with temporal scales. Our observations indicate that the rules in multivariate signal processing are quite different from traditional single unit signal processing.

  19. Network Analyses in Systems Biology: New Strategies for Dealing with Biological Complexity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Sara; Serban, Maria; Scholl, Raphael

    2018-01-01

    of biological networks using tools from graph theory to the application of dynamical systems theory to understand the behavior of complex biological systems. We show how network approaches support and extend traditional mechanistic strategies but also offer novel strategies for dealing with biological...... strategies? When and how can network and mechanistic approaches interact in productive ways? In this paper we address these questions by focusing on how biological networks are represented and analyzed in a diverse class of case studies. Our examples span from the investigation of organizational properties...

  20. Dependency visualization for complex system understanding

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smart, J. Allison Cory [Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States)

    1994-09-01

    With the volume of software in production use dramatically increasing, the importance of software maintenance has become strikingly apparent. Techniques now sought and developed for reverse engineering and design extraction and recovery. At present, numerous commercial products and research tools exist which are capable of visualizing a variety of programming languages and software constructs. The list of new tools and services continues to grow rapidly. Although the scope of the existing commercial and academic product set is quite broad, these tools still share a common underlying problem. The ability of each tool to visually organize object representations is increasingly impaired as the number of components and component dependencies within systems increases. Regardless of how objects are defined, complex ``spaghetti`` networks result in nearly all large system cases. While this problem is immediately apparent in modem systems analysis involving large software implementations, it is not new. As will be discussed in Chapter 2, related problems involving the theory of graphs were identified long ago. This important theoretical foundation provides a useful vehicle for representing and analyzing complex system structures. While the utility of directed graph based concepts in software tool design has been demonstrated in literature, these tools still lack the capabilities necessary for large system comprehension. This foundation must therefore be expanded with new organizational and visualization constructs necessary to meet this challenge. This dissertation addresses this need by constructing a conceptual model and a set of methods for interactively exploring, organizing, and understanding the structure of complex software systems.

  1. Understanding the Thermodynamics of Biological Order

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Jacob

    2012-01-01

    By growth in size and complexity (i.e., changing from more probable to less probable states), plants and animals appear to defy the second law of thermodynamics. The usual explanation describes the input of nutrient and sunlight energy into open thermodynamic systems. However, energy input alone does not address the ability to organize and create…

  2. Life: An Introduction to Complex Systems Biology

    CERN Document Server

    Kaneko, Kunihiko

    2006-01-01

    What is life? Has molecular biology given us a satisfactory answer to this question? And if not, why, and how to carry on from there? This book examines life not from the reductionist point of view, but rather asks the question: what are the universal properties of living systems and how can one construct from there a phenomenological theory of life that leads naturally to complex processes such as reproductive cellular systems, evolution and differentiation? The presentation has been deliberately kept fairly non-technical so as to address a broad spectrum of students and researchers from the natural sciences and informatics.

  3. Systems Biology and Health Systems Complexity in;

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Donald Combs, C.; Barham, S.R.; Sloot, P.M.A.

    2016-01-01

    Systems biology addresses interactions in biological systems at different scales of biological organization, from the molecular to the cellular, organ, organism, societal, and ecosystem levels. This chapter expands on the concept of systems biology, explores its implications for individual patients

  4. Biologic activity of porphyromonas endodontalis complex lipids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirucki, Christopher S; Abedi, Mehran; Jiang, Jin; Zhu, Qiang; Wang, Yu-Hsiung; Safavi, Kamran E; Clark, Robert B; Nichols, Frank C

    2014-09-01

    Periapical infections secondary to pulpal necrosis are associated with bacterial contamination of the pulp. Porphyromonas endodontalis, a gram-negative organism, is considered to be a pulpal pathogen. P. gingivalis is phylogenetically related to P. endodontalis and synthesizes several classes of novel complex lipids that possess biological activity, including the capacity to promote osteoclastogenesis and osteoclast activation. The purpose of this study was to extract and characterize constituent lipids of P. endodontalis and evaluate their capacity to promote proinflammatory secretory responses in the macrophage cell line, RAW 264.7, as well as their capacity to promote osteoclastogenesis and inhibit osteoblast activity. Constituent lipids of both organisms were fractionated by high-performance liquid chromatography and were structurally characterized using electrospray mass spectrometry or electrospray-mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry. The virulence potential of P. endodontalis lipids was then compared with known biologically active lipids isolated from P. gingivalis. P. endodontalis total lipids were shown to promote tumor necrosis factor alpha secretion from RAW 264.7 cells, and the serine lipid fraction appeared to account for the majority of this effect. P. endodontalis lipid preparations also increased osteoclast formation from RAW 264.7 cells, but osteoblast differentiation in culture was inhibited and appeared to be dependent on Toll-like receptor 2 expression. These effects underscore the importance of P. endodontalis lipids in promoting inflammatory and bone cell activation processes that could lead to periapical pathology. Copyright © 2014 American Association of Endodontists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Towards a comprehensive understanding of emerging dynamics and function of pancreatic islets: A complex network approach. Comment on "Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review" by Gosak et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loppini, Alessandro

    2018-03-01

    Complex network theory represents a comprehensive mathematical framework to investigate biological systems, ranging from sub-cellular and cellular scales up to large-scale networks describing species interactions and ecological systems. In their exhaustive and comprehensive work [1], Gosak et al. discuss several scenarios in which the network approach was able to uncover general properties and underlying mechanisms of cells organization and regulation, tissue functions and cell/tissue failure in pathology, by the study of chemical reaction networks, structural networks and functional connectivities.

  6. Complexities of Parental Understanding of Phenylketonuria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sibinga, Maarten S.; Friedman, C. Jack

    1971-01-01

    Parental understanding of PKU, investigated through a questionnaire, was evaluated as to completeness and with respect to distortion. Education of parents was found to be unrelated to their understanding or tendency to distort. Effectiveness of the pediatrician's communication with parents is discussed. (Author/KW)

  7. Epistemological Predictors of Prospective Biology Teachers' Nature of Science Understandings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köseoglu, Pinar; Köksal, Mustafa Serdar

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate epistemological predictors of nature of science understandings of 281 prospective biology teachers surveyed using the Epistemological Beliefs Scale Regarding Science and the Nature of Science Scale. The findings on multiple linear regression showed that understandings about definition of science and…

  8. Finding optimal interaction interface alignments between biological complexes

    KAUST Repository

    Cui, Xuefeng

    2015-06-13

    Motivation: Biological molecules perform their functions through interactions with other molecules. Structure alignment of interaction interfaces between biological complexes is an indispensable step in detecting their structural similarities, which are keys to understanding their evolutionary histories and functions. Although various structure alignment methods have been developed to successfully access the similarities of protein structures or certain types of interaction interfaces, existing alignment tools cannot directly align arbitrary types of interfaces formed by protein, DNA or RNA molecules. Specifically, they require a \\'blackbox preprocessing\\' to standardize interface types and chain identifiers. Yet their performance is limited and sometimes unsatisfactory. Results: Here we introduce a novel method, PROSTA-inter, that automatically determines and aligns interaction interfaces between two arbitrary types of complex structures. Our method uses sequentially remote fragments to search for the optimal superimposition. The optimal residue matching problem is then formulated as a maximum weighted bipartite matching problem to detect the optimal sequence order-independent alignment. Benchmark evaluation on all non-redundant protein-DNA complexes in PDB shows significant performance improvement of our method over TM-align and iAlign (with the \\'blackbox preprocessing\\'). Two case studies where our method discovers, for the first time, structural similarities between two pairs of functionally related protein-DNA complexes are presented. We further demonstrate the power of our method on detecting structural similarities between a protein-protein complex and a protein-RNA complex, which is biologically known as a protein-RNA mimicry case. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.

  9. Improved understanding of protein complex offers insight into DNA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Summer Science Writing Internship Improved understanding of protein complex offers insight into DNA clearer understanding of the origin recognition complex (ORC) - a protein complex that directs DNA replication - through its crystal structure offers new insight into fundamental mechanisms of DNA replication

  10. Mixing and Processing of Complex Biological Fluids

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Liepmann, Dorian

    2003-01-01

    ... of microfluidic control on the makeup and molecular structure of biological fluids. For this project, we focused on two critical fluids that are biologically significant and that are of critical importance to DoD...

  11. Linking structural features of protein complexes and biological function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sowmya, Gopichandran; Breen, Edmond J; Ranganathan, Shoba

    2015-09-01

    Protein-protein interaction (PPI) establishes the central basis for complex cellular networks in a biological cell. Association of proteins with other proteins occurs at varying affinities, yet with a high degree of specificity. PPIs lead to diverse functionality such as catalysis, regulation, signaling, immunity, and inhibition, playing a crucial role in functional genomics. The molecular principle of such interactions is often elusive in nature. Therefore, a comprehensive analysis of known protein complexes from the Protein Data Bank (PDB) is essential for the characterization of structural interface features to determine structure-function relationship. Thus, we analyzed a nonredundant dataset of 278 heterodimer protein complexes, categorized into major functional classes, for distinguishing features. Interestingly, our analysis has identified five key features (interface area, interface polar residue abundance, hydrogen bonds, solvation free energy gain from interface formation, and binding energy) that are discriminatory among the functional classes using Kruskal-Wallis rank sum test. Significant correlations between these PPI interface features amongst functional categories are also documented. Salt bridges correlate with interface area in regulator-inhibitors (r = 0.75). These representative features have implications for the prediction of potential function of novel protein complexes. The results provide molecular insights for better understanding of PPIs and their relation to biological functions. © 2015 The Protein Society.

  12. Soft-Bodied Fossils Are Not Simply Rotten Carcasses - Toward a Holistic Understanding of Exceptional Fossil Preservation: Exceptional Fossil Preservation Is Complex and Involves the Interplay of Numerous Biological and Geological Processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parry, Luke A; Smithwick, Fiann; Nordén, Klara K; Saitta, Evan T; Lozano-Fernandez, Jesus; Tanner, Alastair R; Caron, Jean-Bernard; Edgecombe, Gregory D; Briggs, Derek E G; Vinther, Jakob

    2018-01-01

    Exceptionally preserved fossils are the product of complex interplays of biological and geological processes including burial, autolysis and microbial decay, authigenic mineralization, diagenesis, metamorphism, and finally weathering and exhumation. Determining which tissues are preserved and how biases affect their preservation pathways is important for interpreting fossils in phylogenetic, ecological, and evolutionary frameworks. Although laboratory decay experiments reveal important aspects of fossilization, applying the results directly to the interpretation of exceptionally preserved fossils may overlook the impact of other key processes that remove or preserve morphological information. Investigations of fossils preserving non-biomineralized tissues suggest that certain structures that are decay resistant (e.g., the notochord) are rarely preserved (even where carbonaceous components survive), and decay-prone structures (e.g., nervous systems) can fossilize, albeit rarely. As we review here, decay resistance is an imperfect indicator of fossilization potential, and a suite of biological and geological processes account for the features preserved in exceptional fossils. © 2017 The Authors. BioEssays Published by WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Finding optimal interaction interface alignments between biological complexes

    KAUST Repository

    Cui, Xuefeng; Naveed, Hammad; Gao, Xin

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: Biological molecules perform their functions through interactions with other molecules. Structure alignment of interaction interfaces between biological complexes is an indispensable step in detecting their structural similarities, which

  14. ICPP: Approach for Understanding Complexity of Plasma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Tetsuya

    2000-10-01

    In this talk I wish to present an IT system that could promote Science of Complexity. In order to deal with a seemingly `complex' phenomenon, which means `beyond analytical manipulation', computer simulation is a viable powerful tool. However, complexity implies a concept beyond the horizon of reductionism. Therefore, rather than simply solving a complex phenomenon for a given boundary condition, one must establish an intelligent way of attacking mutual evolution of a system and its environment. NIFS-TCSC has been developing a prototype system that consists of supercomputers, virtual reality devices and high-speed network system. Let us explain this by picking up a global atmospheric circulation group, global oceanic circulation group and local weather prediction group. Local weather prediction group predicts the local change of the weather such as the creation of cloud and rain in the near future under the global conditions obtained by the global atmospheric and ocean groups. The global groups run simulations by modifying the local heat source/sink evaluated by the local weather prediction and then obtain the global conditions in the next time step. By repeating such a feedback performance one can predict the mutual evolution of the local system and its environment. Mutual information exchanges among multiple groups are carried out instantaneously by the networked common virtual reality space in which 3-D global and local images of the atmospheric and oceanic circulation and the cloud and rain maps are arbitrarily manipulated by any of the groups and commonly viewed. The present networking system has a great advantage that any simulation groups can freely and arbitrarily change their alignment, so that mutual evolution of any stratum system can become tractable by utilizing this network system.

  15. Proteomics Improves the New Understanding of Honeybee Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hora, Zewdu Ararso; Altaye, Solomon Zewdu; Wubie, Abebe Jemberie; Li, Jianke

    2018-04-11

    The honeybee is one of the most valuable insect pollinators, playing a key role in pollinating wild vegetation and agricultural crops, with significant contribution to the world's food production. Although honeybees have long been studied as model for social evolution, honeybee biology at the molecular level remained poorly understood until the year 2006. With the availability of the honeybee genome sequence and technological advancements in protein separation, mass spectrometry, and bioinformatics, aspects of honeybee biology such as developmental biology, physiology, behavior, neurobiology, and immunology have been explored to new depths at molecular and biochemical levels. This Review comprehensively summarizes the recent progress in honeybee biology using proteomics to study developmental physiology, task transition, and physiological changes in some of the organs, tissues, and cells based on achievements from the authors' laboratory in this field. The research advances of honeybee proteomics provide new insights for understanding of honeybee biology and future research directions.

  16. Understanding the biological and environmental implications of nanomaterials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Sijie

    quantified by UV-vis spectrophotometry and fitted with the Freundlich isothem. Effects of the adsorption of QDs on the photosynthetic activities of the algae are evaluated using O2 evolution and CO2 depletion assays, and the ecological impact of such adsorption is discussed. To understand the effects of nanomaterials on the cell membrane, nanoparticles (Au, TiO2, and QDs) of different surface charges and chemical compositions are introduced to HT-29 mammalian cells in Chapter 4. The polarization of the cell membrane is investigated using a FLIPR membrane potential kit. The phase of the cell membrane, in the presence of both positively and negatively charged nanoparticles, are examined using laurden, a lipophilic dye that serves as a molecular reporter on the fluidic or gel phase of the host membrane. To address the effects of nanomaterials on biological and ecological systems within the same context, Chapter 5 offers a first parallel comparison between mammalian and plant cell responses to nanomaterials. This study is conducted using a plant cell viability assay, complimented by bright field, fluorescence, and electron microscopy imaging. Discussions of this study are presented based on the hydrophobicity and solubility of C60(OH) 20 and of supramolecular complex C70-NOM, hydrophobicity and porous structure of the plant Allium cepa cell wall, and the amphiphilic structure and endocytosis of the plasma cell membrane of both Allium cepa and HT-29 cells. Chapter 6 summarizes and rationalizes results obtained from the entire dissertation research. Future work inspired by this research is presented at the end of the chapter. Specifically, this dissertation is structured to embody the following essential and complementary chapters: (1) Chapter 1: Literature review (2) Chapter 2: Nano-Eco interactions at the whole organism level; (3) Chapter 3: Nano-Eco interactions at the cellular level; (4) Chapter 4: Nano-Bio interactions at the cellular level; (5) Chapter 5: Parallel comparison

  17. Understanding Interdependency Through Complex Information Sharing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando Rosas

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The interactions between three or more random variables are often nontrivial, poorly understood and, yet, are paramount for future advances in fields such as network information theory, neuroscience and genetics. In this work, we analyze these interactions as different modes of information sharing. Towards this end, and in contrast to most of the literature that focuses on analyzing the mutual information, we introduce an axiomatic framework for decomposing the joint entropy that characterizes the various ways in which random variables can share information. Our framework distinguishes between interdependencies where the information is shared redundantly and synergistic interdependencies where the sharing structure exists in the whole, but not between the parts. The key contribution of our approach is to focus on symmetric properties of this sharing, which do not depend on a specific point of view for differentiating roles between its components. We show that our axioms determine unique formulas for all of the terms of the proposed decomposition for systems of three variables in several cases of interest. Moreover, we show how these results can be applied to several network information theory problems, providing a more intuitive understanding of their fundamental limits.

  18. Neuroanthropological Understanding of Complex Cognition – Numerosity and Arithmetics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zarja Mursic

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Humankind has a long evolutionary history. When we are trying to understand human complex cognition, it is as well important to look back to entire evolution. I will present the thesis that our biological predispositions and culture, together with natural and social environment, are tightly connected. During ontogenetically development we are shaped by various factors, and they enabled humans to develop some aspects of complex cognition, such as mathematics.In the beginning of the article I present the importance of natural and cultural evolution in other animals. In the following part, I briefly examine the field of mathematics – numerosity and arithmetic. Presentation of comparative animal studies, mainly made on primates, provides some interesting examples in animals’ abilities to separate between different quantities. From abilities for numerosity in animals I continue to neuroscientific studies of humans and our ability to solve simple arithmetic tasks. I also mention cross-cultural studies of arithmetic skills. In the final part of the text I present the field neuroanthropology as a possible new pillar of cognitive science. Finally, it is important to connect human evolution and development with animal cognition studies, but as well with cross-cultural studies in shaping of human ability for numerosity and arithmetic.

  19. Students' Energy Understanding Across Biology, Chemistry, and Physics Contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Opitz, S. T.; Neumann, K.; Bernholt, S.; Harms, U.

    2017-07-01

    Energy is considered both as a disciplinary core idea and as a concept cutting across science disciplines. Most previous approaches studied progressing energy understanding in specific disciplinary contexts, while disregarding the relation of understanding across them. Hence, this study provides a systematic analysis of cross-disciplinary energy learning. On the basis of a cross-sectional study with n = 742 students from grades 6, 8, and 10, we analyze students' progression in understanding energy across biology, chemistry, and physics contexts. The study is guided by three hypothetical scenarios that describe how the connection between energy understanding in the three disciplinary contexts changes across grade levels. These scenarios are compared using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). The results suggest that, from grade 6 to grade 10, energy understanding in the three disciplinary contexts is highly interrelated, thus indicating a parallel progression of energy understanding in the three disciplinary contexts. In our study, students from grade 6 onwards appeared to have few problems to apply one energy understanding across the three disciplinary contexts. These findings were unexpected, as previous research concluded that students likely face difficulties in connecting energy learning across disciplinary boundaries. Potential reasons for these results and the characteristics of the observed cross-disciplinary energy understanding are discussed in the light of earlier findings and implications for future research, and the teaching of energy as a core idea and a crosscutting concept are addressed.

  20. Using biological networks to improve our understanding of infectious diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicola J. Mulder

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Infectious diseases are the leading cause of death, particularly in developing countries. Although many drugs are available for treating the most common infectious diseases, in many cases the mechanism of action of these drugs or even their targets in the pathogen remain unknown. In addition, the key factors or processes in pathogens that facilitate infection and disease progression are often not well understood. Since proteins do not work in isolation, understanding biological systems requires a better understanding of the interconnectivity between proteins in different pathways and processes, which includes both physical and other functional interactions. Such biological networks can be generated within organisms or between organisms sharing a common environment using experimental data and computational predictions. Though different data sources provide different levels of accuracy, confidence in interactions can be measured using interaction scores. Connections between interacting proteins in biological networks can be represented as graphs and edges, and thus studied using existing algorithms and tools from graph theory. There are many different applications of biological networks, and here we discuss three such applications, specifically applied to the infectious disease tuberculosis, with its causative agent Mycobacterium tuberculosis and host, Homo sapiens. The applications include the use of the networks for function prediction, comparison of networks for evolutionary studies, and the generation and use of host–pathogen interaction networks.

  1. Network biology concepts in complex disease comorbidities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hu, Jessica Xin; Thomas, Cecilia Engel; Brunak, Søren

    2016-01-01

    collected electronically, disease co-occurrences are starting to be quantitatively characterized. Linking network dynamics to the real-life, non-ideal patient in whom diseases co-occur and interact provides a valuable basis for generating hypotheses on molecular disease mechanisms, and provides knowledge......The co-occurrence of diseases can inform the underlying network biology of shared and multifunctional genes and pathways. In addition, comorbidities help to elucidate the effects of external exposures, such as diet, lifestyle and patient care. With worldwide health transaction data now often being...

  2. Ecosystemic Complexity Theory of Conflict: Understanding the Fog of Conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brack, Greg; Lassiter, Pamela S.; Hill, Michele B.; Moore, Sarah A.

    2011-01-01

    Counselors often engage in conflict mediation in professional practice. A model for understanding the complex and subtle nature of conflict resolution is presented. The ecosystemic complexity theory of conflict is offered to assist practitioners in navigating the fog of conflict. Theoretical assumptions are discussed with implications for clinical…

  3. Understanding Learner Agency as a Complex Dynamic System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer, Sarah

    2011-01-01

    This paper attempts to contribute to a fuller understanding of the nature of language learner agency by considering it as a complex dynamic system. The purpose of the study was to explore detailed situated data to examine to what extent it is feasible to view learner agency through the lens of complexity theory. Data were generated through a…

  4. A microfluidic dialysis device for complex biological mixture SERS analysis

    KAUST Repository

    Perozziello, Gerardo; Candeloro, Patrizio; Gentile, Francesco T.; Coluccio, Maria Laura; Tallerico, Marco; De Grazia, Antonio; Nicastri, Annalisa; Perri, Angela Mena; Parrotta, Elvira; Pardeo, Francesca; Catalano, Rossella; Cuda, Giovanni; Di Fabrizio, Enzo M.

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we present a microfluidic device fabricated with a simple and inexpensive process allowing rapid filtering of peptides from a complex mixture. The polymer microfluidic device can be used for sample preparation in biological

  5. Complexity, Analysis and Control of Singular Biological Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Zhang, Qingling; Zhang, Xue

    2012-01-01

    Complexity, Analysis and Control of Singular Biological Systems follows the control of real-world biological systems at both ecological and phyisological levels concentrating on the application of now-extensively-investigated singular system theory. Much effort has recently been dedicated to the modelling and analysis of developing bioeconomic systems and the text establishes singular examples of these, showing how proper control can help to maintain sustainable economic development of biological resources. The book begins from the essentials of singular systems theory and bifurcations before tackling  the use of various forms of control in singular biological systems using examples including predator-prey relationships and viral vaccination and quarantine control. Researchers and graduate students studying the control of complex biological systems are shown how a variety of methods can be brought to bear and practitioners working with the economics of biological systems and their control will also find the ...

  6. Biological and social understanding of human nature: biopolitical dimension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. K. Kostiuchkov

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines the position of the biopolitical nature of man as a biosocial being given supplies of both the two spheres of life – natural, biological and social. The necessity of understanding of human nature, which by definition are bio-social importance of the approach to the definition of man as an integral, binary-konnotovanoyi of the «social individual – a species» which is characterized by symmetrical opposition – upposition social and biological. It was found that the main task of modern political science, and in particular bio-political studies presented appeals to rethink the political picture of the world in order to predict the development of a new order or a new chaos. Understanding the formation of a new global civilization worldview is today one of the most important problems, which is connected with the main problem of the modern world – the task of preserving life on the planet. It is concluded that the contradictions of human nature – between the biological and the social, physical and spiritual, universal and the particular, natural and artificial, rational and emotional – in today’s conditions are extremely sharp. The said situation requires more in-depth scientific analysis of human nature, the study of the structural level as human biosocial system.

  7. Molecular genetics of glioblastomas: defining subtypes and understanding the biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renault, Ilana Zalcberg; Golgher, Denise

    2015-02-01

    Despite comprehensive therapy, which includes surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, the prognosis of glioblastoma multiforme is very poor. Diagnosed individuals present an average of 12 to 18 months of life. This article provides an overview of the molecular genetics of these tumors. Despite the overwhelming amount of data available, so far little has been translated into real benefits for the patient. Because this is such a complex topic, the goal is to point out the main alterations in the biological pathways that lead to tumor formation, and how this can contribute to the development of better therapies and clinical care. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Understanding complex urban systems multidisciplinary approaches to modeling

    CERN Document Server

    Gurr, Jens; Schmidt, J

    2014-01-01

    Understanding Complex Urban Systems takes as its point of departure the insight that the challenges of global urbanization and the complexity of urban systems cannot be understood – let alone ‘managed’ – by sectoral and disciplinary approaches alone. But while there has recently been significant progress in broadening and refining the methodologies for the quantitative modeling of complex urban systems, in deepening the theoretical understanding of cities as complex systems, or in illuminating the implications for urban planning, there is still a lack of well-founded conceptual thinking on the methodological foundations and the strategies of modeling urban complexity across the disciplines. Bringing together experts from the fields of urban and spatial planning, ecology, urban geography, real estate analysis, organizational cybernetics, stochastic optimization, and literary studies, as well as specialists in various systems approaches and in transdisciplinary methodologies of urban analysis, the volum...

  9. Complex systems of biological interest stability under ionising radiations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maclot, Sylvain

    2014-01-01

    This PhD work presents the study of stability of molecular systems of biological interest in the gas phase after interaction with ionising radiations. The use of ionising radiation can probe the physical chemistry of complex systems at the molecular scale and thus consider their intrinsic properties. Beyond the fundamental aspect, this work is part of the overall understanding of radiation effects on living organisms and in particular the use of ionizing radiation in radiotherapy. Specifically, this study focused on the use of low-energy multiply charged ions (tens of keV) provided by the GANIL (Caen), which includes most of the experiments presented. In addition, experiments using VUV photons were also conducted at synchrotron ELETTRA (Trieste, Italy). The bio-molecular systems studied are amino acids and nucleic acid constituents. Using an experimental crossed beams device allows interaction between biomolecules and ionising radiation leads mainly to the ionization and fragmentation of the system. The study of its relaxation dynamics is by time-of-flight mass spectrometry coupled to a coincidences measurements method. It is shown that an approach combining experiment and theory allows a detailed study of the fragmentation dynamics of complex systems. The results indicate that fragmentation is generally governed by the Coulomb repulsion but the intramolecular rearrangements involve specific relaxation mechanisms. (author) [fr

  10. Recent advances in understanding the biology of marginal zone lymphoma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zucca, Emanuele

    2018-01-01

    There are three different marginal zone lymphomas (MZLs): the extranodal MZL of mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) type (MALT lymphoma), the splenic MZL, and the nodal MZL. The three MZLs share common lesions and deregulated pathways but also present specific alterations that can be used for their differential diagnosis. Although trisomies of chromosomes 3 and 18, deletions at 6q23, deregulation of nuclear factor kappa B, and chromatin remodeling genes are frequent events in all of them, the three MZLs differ in the presence of recurrent translocations, mutations affecting the NOTCH pathway, and the transcription factor Kruppel like factor 2 ( KLF2) or the receptor-type protein tyrosine phosphatase delta ( PTPRD). Since a better understanding of the molecular events underlying each subtype may have practical relevance, this review summarizes the most recent and main advances in our understanding of the genetics and biology of MZLs. PMID:29657712

  11. Mössbauer study of some biological iron complexes

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. Some biological complexes containing iron are investigated experimentally at room temperature using the Mössbauer resonance. The complexes show quadrupole doublet and Kramer's degeneracy is found to exist. The electric field gradient, difference in s-electron densities and quadrupole coupling constant ...

  12. Simple, complex and hyper-complex understanding - enhanced sensitivity in observation of information

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bering Keiding, Tina

    for construction and analysis of empirical information. A quick overview on empirical research drawing on Luhmann reveals a diverse complex of analytical strategies and empirical methods. Despite differences between strategies and methods they have in common that understanding of uttered information is crucial...... in their production of empirically founded knowledge. However research generally seems to pay more attention to production of uttered information than to selection of understanding. The aim of this contribution is to sketch out a suggestion to how selection of understanding can be systematized in order to produce...... enhanced transparency in selection of understanding as well as enhanced sensitivity and definition in dept. The contribution suggest that we distinguish between three types of understanding; simple, complex and hyper-complex understanding. Simple understanding is the simultaneous selection of understanding...

  13. How to make a complex story understandable. Communication on nitrogen

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bleeker, A.; Hensen, A.; Erisman, J.W.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding is the first step towards solving the nitrogen problem. Various applications have been developed to gain insight in the complex interactions between the nitrogen cycle and the social-economic and environmental aspects. Experience has learned that many users have not only gained a clearer picture of the urgency and complexity of the problem; now they also have options for dealing with the nitrogen problem. [nl

  14. Complex fluids in biological systems experiment, theory, and computation

    CERN Document Server

    2015-01-01

    This book serves as an introduction to the continuum mechanics and mathematical modeling of complex fluids in living systems. The form and function of living systems are intimately tied to the nature of surrounding fluid environments, which commonly exhibit nonlinear and history dependent responses to forces and displacements. With ever-increasing capabilities in the visualization and manipulation of biological systems, research on the fundamental phenomena, models, measurements, and analysis of complex fluids has taken a number of exciting directions. In this book, many of the world’s foremost experts explore key topics such as: Macro- and micro-rheological techniques for measuring the material properties of complex biofluids and the subtleties of data interpretation Experimental observations and rheology of complex biological materials, including mucus, cell membranes, the cytoskeleton, and blood The motility of microorganisms in complex fluids and the dynamics of active suspensions Challenges and solut...

  15. Complex network problems in physics, computer science and biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cojocaru, Radu Ionut

    lattice at zero temperature and then we apply this formalism to the K-SAT problem defined in Chapter 1. The phase transition which physicists study often corresponds to a change in the computational complexity of the corresponding computer science problem. Chapter 3 presents phase transitions which are specific to the problems discussed in Chapter 1 and also known results for the K-SAT problem. We discuss the replica method and experimental evidences of replica symmetry breaking. The physics approach to hard problems is based on replica methods which are difficult to understand. In Chapter 4 we develop novel methods for studying hard problems using methods similar to the message passing techniques that were discussed in Chapter 2. Although we concentrated on the symmetric case, cavity methods show promise for generalizing our methods to the un-symmetric case. As has been highlighted by John Hopfield, several key features of biological systems are not shared by physical systems. Although living entities follow the laws of physics and chemistry, the fact that organisms adapt and reproduce introduces an essential ingredient that is missing in the physical sciences. In order to extract information from networks many algorithm have been developed. In Chapter 5 we apply polynomial algorithms like minimum spanning tree in order to study and construct gene regulatory networks from experimental data. As future work we propose the use of algorithms like min-cut/max-flow and Dijkstra for understanding key properties of these networks.

  16. Characterising the Development of the Understanding of Human Body Systems in High-School Biology Students--A Longitudinal Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snapir, Zohar; Eberbach, Catherine; Ben-Zvi-Assaraf, Orit; Hmelo-Silver, Cindy; Tripto, Jaklin

    2017-01-01

    Science education today has become increasingly focused on research into complex natural, social and technological systems. In this study, we examined the development of high-school biology students' systems understanding of the human body, in a three-year longitudinal study. The development of the students' system understanding was evaluated…

  17. Multidisciplinary approaches to understanding collective cell migration in developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumacher, Linus J; Kulesa, Paul M; McLennan, Rebecca; Baker, Ruth E; Maini, Philip K

    2016-06-01

    Mathematical models are becoming increasingly integrated with experimental efforts in the study of biological systems. Collective cell migration in developmental biology is a particularly fruitful application area for the development of theoretical models to predict the behaviour of complex multicellular systems with many interacting parts. In this context, mathematical models provide a tool to assess the consistency of experimental observations with testable mechanistic hypotheses. In this review, we showcase examples from recent years of multidisciplinary investigations of neural crest cell migration. The neural crest model system has been used to study how collective migration of cell populations is shaped by cell-cell interactions, cell-environmental interactions and heterogeneity between cells. The wide range of emergent behaviours exhibited by neural crest cells in different embryonal locations and in different organisms helps us chart out the spectrum of collective cell migration. At the same time, this diversity in migratory characteristics highlights the need to reconcile or unify the array of currently hypothesized mechanisms through the next generation of experimental data and generalized theoretical descriptions. © 2016 The Authors.

  18. Next-Generation Sequencing: From Understanding Biology to Personalized Medicine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Meder

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Within just a few years, the new methods for high-throughput next-generation sequencing have generated completely novel insights into the heritability and pathophysiology of human disease. In this review, we wish to highlight the benefits of the current state-of-the-art sequencing technologies for genetic and epigenetic research. We illustrate how these technologies help to constantly improve our understanding of genetic mechanisms in biological systems and summarize the progress made so far. This can be exemplified by the case of heritable heart muscle diseases, so-called cardiomyopathies. Here, next-generation sequencing is able to identify novel disease genes, and first clinical applications demonstrate the successful translation of this technology into personalized patient care.

  19. Understanding the biological responses of nanostructured metals and surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Terry C.; Reiss, Rebecca A.

    2014-08-01

    Metals produced by Severe Plastic Deformation (SPD) offer distinct advantages for medical applications such as orthopedic devices, in part because of their nanostructured surfaces. We examine the current theoretical foundations and state of knowledge for nanostructured biomaterials surface optimization within the contexts that apply to bulk nanostructured metals, differentiating how their microstructures impact osteogenesis, in particular, for Ultrafine Grained (UFG) titanium. Then we identify key gaps in the research to date, pointing out areas which merit additional focus within the scientific community. For example, we highlight the potential of next-generation DNA sequencing techniques (NGS) to reveal gene and non-coding RNA (ncRNA) expression changes induced by nanostructured metals. While our understanding of bio-nano interactions is in its infancy, nanostructured metals are already being marketed or developed for medical devices such as dental implants, spinal devices, and coronary stents. Our ability to characterize and optimize the biological response of cells to SPD metals will have synergistic effects on advances in materials, biological, and medical science.

  20. Understanding the biological responses of nanostructured metals and surfaces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lowe, Terry C; A Reiss, Rebecca

    2014-01-01

    Metals produced by Severe Plastic Deformation (SPD) offer distinct advantages for medical applications such as orthopedic devices, in part because of their nanostructured surfaces. We examine the current theoretical foundations and state of knowledge for nanostructured biomaterials surface optimization within the contexts that apply to bulk nanostructured metals, differentiating how their microstructures impact osteogenesis, in particular, for Ultrafine Grained (UFG) titanium. Then we identify key gaps in the research to date, pointing out areas which merit additional focus within the scientific community. For example, we highlight the potential of next-generation DNA sequencing techniques (NGS) to reveal gene and non-coding RNA (ncRNA) expression changes induced by nanostructured metals. While our understanding of bio-nano interactions is in its infancy, nanostructured metals are already being marketed or developed for medical devices such as dental implants, spinal devices, and coronary stents. Our ability to characterize and optimize the biological response of cells to SPD metals will have synergistic effects on advances in materials, biological, and medical science

  1. Understanding complex urban systems integrating multidisciplinary data in urban models

    CERN Document Server

    Gebetsroither-Geringer, Ernst; Atun, Funda; Werner, Liss

    2016-01-01

    This book is devoted to the modeling and understanding of complex urban systems. This second volume of Understanding Complex Urban Systems focuses on the challenges of the modeling tools, concerning, e.g., the quality and quantity of data and the selection of an appropriate modeling approach. It is meant to support urban decision-makers—including municipal politicians, spatial planners, and citizen groups—in choosing an appropriate modeling approach for their particular modeling requirements. The contributors to this volume are from different disciplines, but all share the same goal: optimizing the representation of complex urban systems. They present and discuss a variety of approaches for dealing with data-availability problems and finding appropriate modeling approaches—and not only in terms of computer modeling. The selection of articles featured in this volume reflect a broad variety of new and established modeling approaches such as: - An argument for using Big Data methods in conjunction with Age...

  2. Increasing process understanding by analyzing complex interactions in experimental data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Naelapaa, Kaisa; Allesø, Morten; Kristensen, Henning Gjelstrup

    2009-01-01

    understanding of a coating process. It was possible to model the response, that is, the amount of drug released, using both mentioned techniques. However, the ANOVAmodel was difficult to interpret as several interactions between process parameters existed. In contrast to ANOVA, GEMANOVA is especially suited...... for modeling complex interactions and making easily understandable models of these. GEMANOVA modeling allowed a simple visualization of the entire experimental space. Furthermore, information was obtained on how relative changes in the settings of process parameters influence the film quality and thereby drug......There is a recognized need for new approaches to understand unit operations with pharmaceutical relevance. A method for analyzing complex interactions in experimental data is introduced. Higher-order interactions do exist between process parameters, which complicate the interpretation...

  3. Protein scaffolds and higher-order complexes in synthetic biology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    den Hamer, A.; Rosier, B.J.H.M.; Brunsveld, L.; de Greef, T.F.A.; Ryadnov, M.; Brunsveld, L.; Suga, H.

    2017-01-01

    Interactions between proteins control molecular functions such as signalling or metabolic activity. Assembly of proteins via scaffold proteins or in higher-order complexes is a key regulatory mechanism. Understanding and functionally applying this concept requires the construction, study, and

  4. Towards a Unified Understanding of Lithium Action in Basic Biology and its Significance for Applied Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakobsson, Eric; Argüello-Miranda, Orlando; Chiu, See-Wing; Fazal, Zeeshan; Kruczek, James; Nunez-Corrales, Santiago; Pandit, Sagar; Pritchet, Laura

    2017-12-01

    about the nature of this competition and suggest using and extending this knowledge towards the goal of a unified understanding of lithium in biology and the application of that understanding in medicine and nutrition.

  5. Systematic synergy modeling: understanding drug synergy from a systems biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Di; Liu, Xi; Yang, Yiping; Yang, Hongjun; Lu, Peng

    2015-09-16

    Owing to drug synergy effects, drug combinations have become a new trend in combating complex diseases like cancer, HIV and cardiovascular diseases. However, conventional synergy quantification methods often depend on experimental dose-response data which are quite resource-demanding. In addition, these methods are unable to interpret the explicit synergy mechanism. In this review, we give representative examples of how systems biology modeling offers strategies toward better understanding of drug synergy, including the protein-protein interaction (PPI) network-based methods, pathway dynamic simulations, synergy network motif recognitions, integrative drug feature calculations, and "omic"-supported analyses. Although partially successful in drug synergy exploration and interpretation, more efforts should be put on a holistic understanding of drug-disease interactions, considering integrative pharmacology and toxicology factors. With a comprehensive and deep insight into the mechanism of drug synergy, systems biology opens a novel avenue for rational design of effective drug combinations.

  6. Emergence of biological complexity: Criticality, renewal and memory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grigolini, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    The key purpose of this article is to establish a connection between two emerging fields of research in theoretical biology. The former focuses on the concept of criticality borrowed from physics that is expected to be extensible to biology through a robust theoretical approach that although not yet available shall eventually shed light into the origin of cognition. The latter, largely based on the tracking of single molecules diffusing in biological cells, is bringing to the general attention the need to go beyond the ergodic assumption currently done in the traditional statistical physics. We show that replacing critical slowing down with temporal complexity explains why biological systems at criticality are resilient and why long-range correlations are compatible with the free-will condition necessary for the emergence of cognition. Temporal complexity generates ergodicity breakdown and requires new forms of response of complex systems to external stimuli. We concisely illustrate these new forms of information transport and we also address the challenging issue of combining temporal complexity with coherence and renewal with infinite memory.

  7. Complexity: the organizing principle at the interface of biological (dis ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    RAMRAY BHAT

    2017-07-05

    Jul 5, 2017 ... opment of complexity theory in the context of biological systems. ... (DST), a mathematical enterprise that deals with the behaviour of ... and application of programming to trace the dynamical .... with the resultant organization being regulated by the ... more regular the pattern, the smaller the program needed.

  8. Towards a Molecular Understanding of the Fanconi Anemia Core Complex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlotte Hodson

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Fanconi Anemia (FA is a genetic disorder characterized by the inability of patient cells to repair DNA damage caused by interstrand crosslinking agents. There are currently 14 verified FA genes, where mutation of any single gene prevents repair of DNA interstrand crosslinks (ICLs. The accumulation of ICL damage results in genome instability and patients having a high predisposition to cancers. The key event of the FA pathway is dependent on an eight-protein core complex (CC, required for the monoubiquitination of each member of the FANCD2-FANCI complex. Interestingly, the majority of patient mutations reside in the CC. The molecular mechanisms underlying the requirement for such a large complex to carry out a monoubiquitination event remain a mystery. This paper documents the extensive efforts of researchers so far to understand the molecular roles of the CC proteins with regard to its main function in the FA pathway, the monoubiquitination of FANCD2 and FANCI.

  9. Towards a Molecular Understanding of the Fanconi Anemia Core Complex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodson, Charlotte; Walden, Helen

    2012-01-01

    Fanconi Anemia (FA) is a genetic disorder characterized by the inability of patient cells to repair DNA damage caused by interstrand crosslinking agents. There are currently 14 verified FA genes, where mutation of any single gene prevents repair of DNA interstrand crosslinks (ICLs). The accumulation of ICL damage results in genome instability and patients having a high predisposition to cancers. The key event of the FA pathway is dependent on an eight-protein core complex (CC), required for the monoubiquitination of each member of the FANCD2-FANCI complex. Interestingly, the majority of patient mutations reside in the CC. The molecular mechanisms underlying the requirement for such a large complex to carry out a monoubiquitination event remain a mystery. This paper documents the extensive efforts of researchers so far to understand the molecular roles of the CC proteins with regard to its main function in the FA pathway, the monoubiquitination of FANCD2 and FANCI. PMID:22675617

  10. Predictive modelling of complex agronomic and biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keurentjes, Joost J B; Molenaar, Jaap; Zwaan, Bas J

    2013-09-01

    Biological systems are tremendously complex in their functioning and regulation. Studying the multifaceted behaviour and describing the performance of such complexity has challenged the scientific community for years. The reduction of real-world intricacy into simple descriptive models has therefore convinced many researchers of the usefulness of introducing mathematics into biological sciences. Predictive modelling takes such an approach another step further in that it takes advantage of existing knowledge to project the performance of a system in alternating scenarios. The ever growing amounts of available data generated by assessing biological systems at increasingly higher detail provide unique opportunities for future modelling and experiment design. Here we aim to provide an overview of the progress made in modelling over time and the currently prevalent approaches for iterative modelling cycles in modern biology. We will further argue for the importance of versatility in modelling approaches, including parameter estimation, model reduction and network reconstruction. Finally, we will discuss the difficulties in overcoming the mathematical interpretation of in vivo complexity and address some of the future challenges lying ahead. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. From Molecules to Life: Quantifying the Complexity of Chemical and Biological Systems in the Universe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Böttcher, Thomas

    2018-01-01

    Life is a complex phenomenon and much research has been devoted to both understanding its origins from prebiotic chemistry and discovering life beyond Earth. Yet, it has remained elusive how to quantify this complexity and how to compare chemical and biological units on one common scale. Here, a mathematical description of molecular complexity was applied allowing to quantitatively assess complexity of chemical structures. This in combination with the orthogonal measure of information complexity resulted in a two-dimensional complexity space ranging over the entire spectrum from molecules to organisms. Entities with a certain level of information complexity directly require a functionally complex mechanism for their production or replication and are hence indicative for life-like systems. In order to describe entities combining molecular and information complexity, the term biogenic unit was introduced. Exemplified biogenic unit complexities were calculated for ribozymes, protein enzymes, multimeric protein complexes, and even an entire virus particle. Complexities of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, as well as multicellular organisms, were estimated. Thereby distinct evolutionary stages in complexity space were identified. The here developed approach to compare the complexity of biogenic units allows for the first time to address the gradual characteristics of prebiotic and life-like systems without the need for a definition of life. This operational concept may guide our search for life in the Universe, and it may direct the investigations of prebiotic trajectories that lead towards the evolution of complexity at the origins of life.

  12. From globally coupled maps to complex-systems biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaneko, Kunihiko, E-mail: kaneko@complex.c.u-tokyo.ac.jp [Research Center for Complex Systems Biology, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, The University of Tokyo 3-8-1 Komaba, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 153-8902 (Japan)

    2015-09-15

    Studies of globally coupled maps, introduced as a network of chaotic dynamics, are briefly reviewed with an emphasis on novel concepts therein, which are universal in high-dimensional dynamical systems. They include clustering of synchronized oscillations, hierarchical clustering, chimera of synchronization and desynchronization, partition complexity, prevalence of Milnor attractors, chaotic itinerancy, and collective chaos. The degrees of freedom necessary for high dimensionality are proposed to equal the number in which the combinatorial exceeds the exponential. Future analysis of high-dimensional dynamical systems with regard to complex-systems biology is briefly discussed.

  13. EPR spectroscopy of complex biological iron-sulfur systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagen, Wilfred R

    2018-02-21

    From the very first discovery of biological iron-sulfur clusters with EPR, the spectroscopy has been used to study not only purified proteins but also complex systems such as respiratory complexes, membrane particles and, later, whole cells. In recent times, the emphasis of iron-sulfur biochemistry has moved from characterization of individual proteins to the systems biology of iron-sulfur biosynthesis, regulation, degradation, and implications for human health. Although this move would suggest a blossoming of System-EPR as a specific, non-invasive monitor of Fe/S (dys)homeostasis in whole cells, a review of the literature reveals limited success possibly due to technical difficulties in adherence to EPR spectroscopic and biochemical standards. In an attempt to boost application of System-EPR the required boundary conditions and their practical applications are explicitly and comprehensively formulated.

  14. Understanding of Leaf Development—the Science of Complexity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Malinowski

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The leaf is the major organ involved in light perception and conversion of solar energy into organic carbon. In order to adapt to different natural habitats, plants have developed a variety of leaf forms, ranging from simple to compound, with various forms of dissection. Due to the enormous cellular complexity of leaves, understanding the mechanisms regulating development of these organs is difficult. In recent years there has been a dramatic increase in the use of technically advanced imaging techniques and computational modeling in studies of leaf development. Additionally, molecular tools for manipulation of morphogenesis were successfully used for in planta verification of developmental models. Results of these interdisciplinary studies show that global growth patterns influencing final leaf form are generated by cooperative action of genetic, biochemical, and biomechanical inputs. This review summarizes recent progress in integrative studies on leaf development and illustrates how intrinsic features of leaves (including their cellular complexity influence the choice of experimental approach.

  15. Disaster forensics understanding root cause and complex causality

    CERN Document Server

    2016-01-01

    This book aims to uncover the root causes of natural and man-made disasters by going beyond the typical reports and case studies conducted post-disaster. It opens the black box of disasters by presenting ‘forensic analysis approaches’ to disasters, thereby revealing the complex causality that characterizes them and explaining how and why hazards do, or do not, become disasters. This yields ‘systemic’ strategies for managing disasters. Recently the global threat landscape has seen the emergence of high impact, low probability events. Events like Hurricane Katrina, the Great Japan Earthquake and tsunami, Hurricane Sandy, Super Typhoon Haiyan, global terrorist activities have become the new norm. Extreme events challenge our understanding regarding the interdependencies and complexity of the disaster aetiology and are often referred to as Black Swans. Between 2002 and 2011, there were 4130 disasters recorded that resulted from natural hazards around the world. In these, 1,117,527 people perished and a mi...

  16. Understanding Federal regulations as guidelines for classical biological control programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael E. Montgomery

    2011-01-01

    This chapter reviews the legislation and rules that provide the foundation for federal regulation of the introduction of natural enemies of insects as biological control agents. It also outlines the steps for complying with regulatory requirements, using biological control of Adelges tsugae Annand, the hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA), as an example. The...

  17. Complexity and simplification in understanding recruitment in benthic populations

    KAUST Repository

    Pineda, Jesús

    2008-11-13

    Research of complex systems and problems, entities with many dependencies, is often reductionist. The reductionist approach splits systems or problems into different components, and then addresses these components one by one. This approach has been used in the study of recruitment and population dynamics of marine benthic (bottom-dwelling) species. Another approach examines benthic population dynamics by looking at a small set of processes. This approach is statistical or model-oriented. Simplified approaches identify "macroecological" patterns or attempt to identify and model the essential, "first-order" elements of the system. The complexity of the recruitment and population dynamics problems stems from the number of processes that can potentially influence benthic populations, including (1) larval pool dynamics, (2) larval transport, (3) settlement, and (4) post-settlement biotic and abiotic processes, and larval production. Moreover, these processes are non-linear, some interact, and they may operate on disparate scales. This contribution discusses reductionist and simplified approaches to study benthic recruitment and population dynamics of bottom-dwelling marine invertebrates. We first address complexity in two processes known to influence recruitment, larval transport, and post-settlement survival to reproduction, and discuss the difficulty in understanding recruitment by looking at relevant processes individually and in isolation. We then address the simplified approach, which reduces the number of processes and makes the problem manageable. We discuss how simplifications and "broad-brush first-order approaches" may muddle our understanding of recruitment. Lack of empirical determination of the fundamental processes often results in mistaken inferences, and processes and parameters used in some models can bias our view of processes influencing recruitment. We conclude with a discussion on how to reconcile complex and simplified approaches. Although it

  18. Understanding Parkinson Disease: A Complex and Multifaceted Illness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gopalakrishna, Apoorva; Alexander, Sheila A

    2015-12-01

    Parkinson disease is an incredibly complex and multifaceted illness affecting millions of people in the United States. Parkinson disease is characterized by progressive dopaminergic neuronal dysfunction and loss, leading to debilitating motor, cognitive, and behavioral symptoms. Parkinson disease is an enigmatic illness that is still extensively researched today to search for a better understanding of the disease, develop therapeutic interventions to halt or slow progression of the disease, and optimize patient outcomes. This article aims to examine in detail the normal function of the basal ganglia and dopaminergic neurons in the central nervous system, the etiology and pathophysiology of Parkinson disease, related signs and symptoms, current treatment, and finally, the profound impact of understanding the disease on nursing care.

  19. Evolution in students' understanding of thermal physics with increasing complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langbeheim, Elon; Safran, Samuel A.; Livne, Shelly; Yerushalmi, Edit

    2013-12-01

    We analyze the development in students’ understanding of fundamental principles in the context of learning a current interdisciplinary research topic—soft matter—that was adapted to the level of high school students. The topic was introduced in a program for interested 11th grade high school students majoring in chemistry and/or physics, in an off-school setting. Soft matter was presented in a gradual increase in the degree of complexity of the phenomena as well as in the level of the quantitative analysis. We describe the evolution in students’ use of fundamental thermodynamics principles to reason about phase separation—a phenomenon that is ubiquitous in soft matter. In particular, we examine the impact of the use of free energy analysis, a common approach in soft matter, on the understanding of the fundamental principles of thermodynamics. The study used diagnostic questions and classroom observations to gauge the student’s learning. In order to gain insight on the aspects that shape the understanding of the basic principles, we focus on the responses and explanations of two case-study students who represent two trends of evolution in conceptual understanding in the group. We analyze changes in the two case studies’ management of conceptual resources used in their analysis of phase separation, and suggest how their prior knowledge and epistemological framing (a combination of their personal tendencies and their prior exposure to different learning styles) affect their conceptual evolution. Finally, we propose strategies to improve the instruction of these concepts.

  20. Land, power and conflict in Afghanistan: seeking to understand complexity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Pain

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper explores the diverse links between land and power under conditions of conflict in Afghanistan, taking into account the complexities of Afghan society. These complexities are structured around interconnecting informal institutions and personalised relationships, culturally specific, diverse and shifting patterns of social relations, and spatially specific patterns of land ownership inequalities. The paper draws on a decade of empirical fieldwork in Afghanistan and recent work on livelihood trajectories and the opium economy. An understanding of the evolution of land ownership and access issues needs to be associated with an appreciation of diverse and potentially contradictory long-term drivers of change in the rural economy. The first of these long-term drivers of change relates to the effects of conflict, not only on land but also of water access under conditions of an increasingly scarce water supply. The second driver relates both to the roles played by village elites and to the structural contrasts between villages located in the mountains and in the plains, with the latter displaying major inequalities in land ownership. The third driver relates to the declining economic role of land in rural livelihoods, given long-term agrarian change and falling farm sizes. An understanding of history is fundamental to explaining these phenomena. How such conflicts play out, and which social groups or individuals they involve, also depend to a large degree on spatial positioning.

  1. Membrane Binding of Recoverin: From Mechanistic Understanding to Biological Functionality

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Timr, S.; Pleskot, Roman; Kadlec, J.; Kohagen, M.; Magarkar, A.; Jungwirth, P.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 3, č. 8 (2017), s. 868-874 ISSN 2374-7943 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : recoverin * membrane * myristoyl Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry OBOR OECD: Cell biology Impact factor: 7.481, year: 2016

  2. Understanding Life : The Evolutionary Dynamics of Complexity and Semiosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loeckenhoff, Helmut K.

    2010-11-01

    Post-Renaissance sciences created different cultures. To establish an epistemological base, Physics were separated from the Mental domain. Consciousness was excluded from science. Life Sciences were left in between e.g. LaMettrie's `man—machine' (1748) and 'vitalism' [e.g. Bergson 4]. Causative thinking versus intuitive arguing limited strictly comprehensive concepts. First ethology established a potential shared base for science, proclaiming the `biology paradigm' in the middle of the 20th century. Initially procured by Cybernetics and Systems sciences, `constructivist' models prepared a new view on human perception and thus also of scientific `objectivity when introducing the `observer'. In sequel Computer sciences triggered the ICT revolution. In turn ICT helped to develop Chaos and Complexity sciences, Non-linear Mathematics and its spin-offs in the formal sciences [Spencer-Brown 49] as e.g. (proto-)logics. Models of life systems, as e.g. Anticipatory Systems, integrated epistemology with mathematics and Anticipatory Computing [Dubois 11, 12, 13, 14] connecting them with Semiotics. Seminal ideas laid in the turn of the 19th to the 20th century [J. v. Uexküll 53] detected the co-action and co-evolvement of environments and life systems. Bio-Semiotics ascribed purpose, intent and meaning as essential qualities of life. The concepts of Systems Biology and Qualitative Research enriched and develop also anthropologies and humanities. Brain research added models of (higher) consciousness. An avant-garde is contemplating a science including consciousness as one additional base. New insights from the extended qualitative approach led to re-conciliation of basic assumptions of scientific inquiry, creating the `epistemological turn'. Paradigmatically, resting on macro- micro- and recently on nano-biology, evolution biology sired fresh scripts of evolution [W. Wieser 60,61]. Its results tie to hypotheses describing the emergence of language, of the human mind and of

  3. Reflecting on complexity of biological systems: Kant and beyond?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van de Vijver, Gertrudis; Van Speybroeck, Linda; Vandevyvere, Windy

    2003-01-01

    Living organisms are currently most often seen as complex dynamical systems that develop and evolve in relation to complex environments. Reflections on the meaning of the complex dynamical nature of living systems show an overwhelming multiplicity in approaches, descriptions, definitions and methodologies. Instead of sustaining an epistemic pluralism, which often functions as a philosophical armistice in which tolerance and so-called neutrality discharge proponents of the burden to clarify the sources and conditions of agreement and disagreement, this paper aims at analysing: (i) what has been Kant's original conceptualisation of living organisms as natural purposes; (ii) how the current perspectives are to be related to Kant's viewpoint; (iii) what are the main trends in current complexity thinking. One of the basic ideas is that the attention for structure and its epistemological consequences witness to a great extent of Kant's viewpoint, and that the idea of organisational stratification today constitutes a different breeding ground within which complexity issues are raised. The various approaches of complexity in biological systems are captured in terms of two different styles, universalism and (weak and strong) constructivism, between which hybrid forms exist.

  4. Perspectives of a systems biology of the brain: the big data conundrum understanding psychiatric diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mewes, H W

    2013-05-01

    Psychiatric diseases provoke human tragedies. Asocial behaviour, mood imbalance, uncontrolled affect, and cognitive malfunction are the price for the biological and social complexity of neurobiology. To understand the etiology and to influence the onset and progress of mental diseases remains of upmost importance, but despite the much improved care for the patients, more then 100 years of research have not succeeded to understand the basic disease mechanisms and enabling rationale treatment. With the advent of the genome based technologies, much hope has been created to join the various dimension of -omics data to uncover the secrets of mental illness. Big Data as generated by -omics do not come with explanations. In this essay, I will discuss the inherent, not well understood methodological foundations and problems that seriously obstacle in striving for a quick success and may render lucky strikes impossible. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  5. Evolution in students’ understanding of thermal physics with increasing complexity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elon Langbeheim

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available We analyze the development in students’ understanding of fundamental principles in the context of learning a current interdisciplinary research topic—soft matter—that was adapted to the level of high school students. The topic was introduced in a program for interested 11th grade high school students majoring in chemistry and/or physics, in an off-school setting. Soft matter was presented in a gradual increase in the degree of complexity of the phenomena as well as in the level of the quantitative analysis. We describe the evolution in students’ use of fundamental thermodynamics principles to reason about phase separation—a phenomenon that is ubiquitous in soft matter. In particular, we examine the impact of the use of free energy analysis, a common approach in soft matter, on the understanding of the fundamental principles of thermodynamics. The study used diagnostic questions and classroom observations to gauge the student’s learning. In order to gain insight on the aspects that shape the understanding of the basic principles, we focus on the responses and explanations of two case-study students who represent two trends of evolution in conceptual understanding in the group. We analyze changes in the two case studies’ management of conceptual resources used in their analysis of phase separation, and suggest how their prior knowledge and epistemological framing (a combination of their personal tendencies and their prior exposure to different learning styles affect their conceptual evolution. Finally, we propose strategies to improve the instruction of these concepts.

  6. Understanding life together: A brief history of collaboration in biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermeulen, Niki; Parker, John N.; Penders, Bart

    2013-01-01

    The history of science shows a shift from single-investigator ‘little science’ to increasingly large, expensive, multinational, interdisciplinary and interdependent ‘big science’. In physics and allied fields this shift has been well documented, but the rise of collaboration in the life sciences and its effect on scientific work and knowledge has received little attention. Research in biology exhibits different historical trajectories and organisation of collaboration in field and laboratory – differences still visible in contemporary collaborations such as the Census of Marine Life and the Human Genome Project. We employ these case studies as strategic exemplars, supplemented with existing research on collaboration in biology, to expose the different motives, organisational forms and social dynamics underpinning contemporary large-scale collaborations in biology and their relations to historical patterns of collaboration in the life sciences. We find the interaction between research subject, research approach as well as research organisation influencing collaboration patterns and the work of scientists. PMID:23578694

  7. Chemometric and Statistical Analyses of ToF-SIMS Spectra of Increasingly Complex Biological Samples

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berman, E S; Wu, L; Fortson, S L; Nelson, D O; Kulp, K S; Wu, K J

    2007-10-24

    Characterizing and classifying molecular variation within biological samples is critical for determining fundamental mechanisms of biological processes that will lead to new insights including improved disease understanding. Towards these ends, time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry (ToF-SIMS) was used to examine increasingly complex samples of biological relevance, including monosaccharide isomers, pure proteins, complex protein mixtures, and mouse embryo tissues. The complex mass spectral data sets produced were analyzed using five common statistical and chemometric multivariate analysis techniques: principal component analysis (PCA), linear discriminant analysis (LDA), partial least squares discriminant analysis (PLSDA), soft independent modeling of class analogy (SIMCA), and decision tree analysis by recursive partitioning. PCA was found to be a valuable first step in multivariate analysis, providing insight both into the relative groupings of samples and into the molecular basis for those groupings. For the monosaccharides, pure proteins and protein mixture samples, all of LDA, PLSDA, and SIMCA were found to produce excellent classification given a sufficient number of compound variables calculated. For the mouse embryo tissues, however, SIMCA did not produce as accurate a classification. The decision tree analysis was found to be the least successful for all the data sets, providing neither as accurate a classification nor chemical insight for any of the tested samples. Based on these results we conclude that as the complexity of the sample increases, so must the sophistication of the multivariate technique used to classify the samples. PCA is a preferred first step for understanding ToF-SIMS data that can be followed by either LDA or PLSDA for effective classification analysis. This study demonstrates the strength of ToF-SIMS combined with multivariate statistical and chemometric techniques to classify increasingly complex biological samples

  8. Kirigami artificial muscles with complex biologically inspired morphologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sareh, Sina; Rossiter, Jonathan

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we present bio-inspired smart structures which exploit the actuation of flexible ionic polymer composites and the kirigami design principle. Kirigami design is used to convert planar actuators into active 3D structures capable of large out-of-plane displacement and that replicate biological mechanisms. Here we present the burstbot, a fluid control and propulsion mechanism based on the atrioventricular cuspid valve, and the vortibot, a spiral actuator based on Vorticella campanula, a ciliate protozoa. Models derived from biological counterparts are used as a platform for design optimization and actuator performance measurement. The symmetric and asymmetric fluid interactions of the burstbot are investigated and the effectiveness in fluid transport applications is demonstrated. The vortibot actuator is geometrically optimized as a camera positioner capable of 360° scanning. Experimental results for a one-turn spiral actuator show complex actuation derived from a single degree of freedom control signal. (paper)

  9. An Integrative Systems Biology Approach to Understanding Pulmonary Diseases

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Auffray, Charles; Adcock, Ian M.; Chung, Kian Fan; Djukanovic, Ratko; Pison, Christophe; Sterk, Peter J.

    2010-01-01

    Chronic inflammatory pulmonary diseases such as COPD and asthma are highly prevalent and associated with a major health burden worldwide. Despite a wealth of biologic and clinical information on normal and pathologic airway structure and function, the primary causes and mechanisms of disease remain

  10. PREFACE: Complex Networks: from Biology to Information Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrat, A.; Boccaletti, S.; Caldarelli, G.; Chessa, A.; Latora, V.; Motter, A. E.

    2008-06-01

    The field of complex networks is one of the most active areas in contemporary statistical physics. Ten years after seminal work initiated the modern study of networks, interest in the field is in fact still growing, as indicated by the ever increasing number of publications in network science. The reason for such a resounding success is most likely the simplicity and broad significance of the approach that, through graph theory, allows researchers to address a variety of different complex systems within a common framework. This special issue comprises a selection of contributions presented at the workshop 'Complex Networks: from Biology to Information Technology' held in July 2007 in Pula (Cagliari), Italy as a satellite of the general conference STATPHYS23. The contributions cover a wide range of problems that are currently among the most important questions in the area of complex networks and that are likely to stimulate future research. The issue is organised into four sections. The first two sections describe 'methods' to study the structure and the dynamics of complex networks, respectively. After this methodological part, the issue proceeds with a section on applications to biological systems. The issue closes with a section concentrating on applications to the study of social and technological networks. The first section, entitled Methods: The Structure, consists of six contributions focused on the characterisation and analysis of structural properties of complex networks: The paper Motif-based communities in complex networks by Arenas et al is a study of the occurrence of characteristic small subgraphs in complex networks. These subgraphs, known as motifs, are used to define general classes of nodes and their communities by extending the mathematical expression of the Newman-Girvan modularity. The same line of research, aimed at characterising network structure through the analysis of particular subgraphs, is explored by Bianconi and Gulbahce in Algorithm

  11. Cognition and Rhetoric: Biological Basis of Meaning and Understanding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Arenas-Dolz

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is twofold: on the one hand, to explore those approaches that understand cognitive processes as embodied and as a result of our interaction with the environment, and not merely as as a information processing system; and, on the other hand, to show their connexion with the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying meaning and understanding, giving and overview of some of the insights from recent studies in neurorhetorics.

  12. Toward Understanding the Biology of Crime in Trinidad and Tobago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmanuel, D

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Serious crime is a scourge within Trinidad and Tobago's borders and seems to be escalating yearly with no resolution in sight. It is commonplace for governments to view/implement policies targeting crime based on sociological and psychological paradigms. What is most often overlooked, however, is that crime has unique biological underpinnings, which, if characterized, could lead toward clinical interventions that could mitigate its incidence within the population. PMID:25803384

  13. The complexity of DNA damage: relevance to biological consequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ward, J.F.

    1994-01-01

    Ionizing radiation causes both singly and multiply damaged sites in DNA when the range of radical migration is limited by the presence of hydroxyl radical scavengers (e.g. within cells). Multiply damaged sites are considered to be more biologically relevant because of the challenges they present to cellular repair mechanisms. These sites occur in the form of DNA double-strand breaks (dsb) but also as other multiple damages that can be converted to dsb during attempted repair. The presence of a dsb can lead to loss of base sequence information and/or can permit the two ends of a break to separate and rejoin with the wrong partner. (Multiply damaged sites may also be the biologically relevant type of damage caused by other agents, such as UVA, B and/or C light, and some antitumour antibiotics). The quantitative data available from radiation studies of DNA are shown to support the proposed mechanisms for the production of complex damage in cellular DNA, i.e. via scavengable and non-scavengable mechanisms. The yields of complex damages can in turn be used to support the conclusion that cellular mutations are a consequence of the presence of these damages within a gene. (Author)

  14. Understanding genetic variation - the value of systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hütt, Marc-Thorsten

    2014-04-01

    Pharmacology is currently transformed by the vast amounts of genome-associated information available for system-level interpretation. Here I review the potential of systems biology to facilitate this interpretation, thus paving the way for the emerging field of systems pharmacology. In particular, I will show how gene regulatory and metabolic networks can serve as a framework for interpreting high throughput data and as an interface to detailed dynamical models. In addition to the established connectivity analyses of effective networks, I suggest here to also analyze higher order architectural properties of effective networks. © 2013 The British Pharmacological Society.

  15. Toxicity of silver nanoparticles in biological systems: Does the complexity of biological systems matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vazquez-Muñoz, Roberto; Borrego, Belen; Juárez-Moreno, Karla; García-García, Maritza; Mota Morales, Josué D; Bogdanchikova, Nina; Huerta-Saquero, Alejandro

    2017-07-05

    Currently, nanomaterials are more frequently in our daily life, specifically in biomedicine, electronics, food, textiles and catalysis just to name a few. Although nanomaterials provide many benefits, recently their toxicity profiles have begun to be explored. In this work, the toxic effects of silver nanoparticles (35nm-average diameter and Polyvinyl-Pyrrolidone-coated) on biological systems of different levels of complexity was assessed in a comprehensive and comparatively way, through a variety of viability and toxicological assays. The studied organisms included viruses, bacteria, microalgae, fungi, animal and human cells (including cancer cell lines). It was found that biological systems of different taxonomical groups are inhibited at concentrations of silver nanoparticles within the same order of magnitude. Thus, the toxicity of nanomaterials on biological/living systems, constrained by their complexity, e.g. taxonomic groups, resulted contrary to the expected. The fact that cells and virus are inhibited with a concentration of silver nanoparticles within the same order of magnitude could be explained considering that silver nanoparticles affects very primitive cellular mechanisms by interacting with fundamental structures for cells and virus alike. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Exploitation of complex network topology for link prediction in biological interactomes

    KAUST Repository

    Alanis Lobato, Gregorio

    2014-06-01

    The network representation of the interactions between proteins and genes allows for a holistic perspective of the complex machinery underlying the living cell. However, the large number of interacting entities within the cell makes network construction a daunting and arduous task, prone to errors and missing information. Fortunately, the structure of biological networks is not different from that of other complex systems, such as social networks, the world-wide web or power grids, for which growth models have been proposed to better understand their structure and function. This means that we can design tools based on these models in order to exploit the topology of biological interactomes with the aim to construct more complete and reliable maps of the cell. In this work, we propose three novel and powerful approaches for the prediction of interactions in biological networks and conclude that it is possible to mine the topology of these complex system representations and produce reliable and biologically meaningful information that enriches the datasets to which we have access today.

  17. Dermal tumorigen PAH and complex mixtures for biological research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Griest, W.H.; Guerin, M.R.; Ho, C.

    1985-01-01

    Thirteen commercially available, commonly reported four-five ring dermal tumorigen PAHs, were determined in a set of complex mixtures consisting of crude and upgraded coal liquids, and petroleum crude oils and their distillate fractions. Semi-preparative scale, normal phase high performance liquid chromatographic fractionation followed by capillary column gas chromatography or gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy were used for the measurements. Deuterated or carbon-14 labeled PAH served as internal standards or allowed recovery corrections. Approaches for the preparation and measurement of radiolabeled PAH were examined to provide chemical probes for biological study. Synthetic routes for production of 14 C labeled dihydrobenzo[a]pyrene and 14 C- or 3 H 10-azabenzo[a]pyrene are being studied to provide tracers for fundamental studies in tracheal transplant and skin penetration systems. (DT)

  18. Understanding the basic biology underlying the flavor world of children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie A. MENNELLA, Alison K. VENTURA

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Health organizations worldwide recommend that adults and children minimize intakes of excess energy and salty, sweet, and fatty foods (all of which are highly preferred tastes and eat diets richer in whole grains, low- and non- fat dairy products, legumes, fish, lean meat, fruits, and vegetables (many of which taste bitter. Despite such recommendations and the well-established benefits of these foods to human health, adults are not complying, nor are their children. A primary reason for this difficulty is the remarkably potent rewarding properties of the tastes and flavors of foods high in sweetness, saltiness, and fatness. While we cannot easily change children’s basic ingrained biology of liking sweets and avoiding bitterness, we can modulate their flavor preferences by providing early exposure, starting in utero, to a wide variety of flavors within healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Because the flavors of foods mothers eat during pregnancy and lactation also flavor amniotic fluid and breast milk and become preferred by infants, pregnant and lactating women should widen their food choices to include as many flavorful and healthy foods as possible. These experiences, combined with repeated exposure to nutritious foods and flavor variety during the weaning period and beyond, should maximize the chances that children will select and enjoy a healthier diet [Current Zoology 56 (6: 834–841, 2010].

  19. Mesoscale modeling: solving complex flows in biology and biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Zachary Grant; Mao, Wenbin; Alexeev, Alexander

    2013-07-01

    Fluids are involved in practically all physiological activities of living organisms. However, biological and biorelated flows are hard to analyze due to the inherent combination of interdependent effects and processes that occur on a multitude of spatial and temporal scales. Recent advances in mesoscale simulations enable researchers to tackle problems that are central for the understanding of such flows. Furthermore, computational modeling effectively facilitates the development of novel therapeutic approaches. Among other methods, dissipative particle dynamics and the lattice Boltzmann method have become increasingly popular during recent years due to their ability to solve a large variety of problems. In this review, we discuss recent applications of these mesoscale methods to several fluid-related problems in medicine, bioengineering, and biotechnology. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Applying a complex adaptive system's understanding of health to primary care [version 2; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes Bircher

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper explores the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of a new concept of health. Investigations into the nature of health have led to a new definition that explains health as a complex adaptive system (CAS and is based on five components (a-e. Humans like all biological creatures must satisfactorily respond to (a the demands of life. For this purpose they need (b a biologically given potential (BGP and (c a personally acquired potential (PAP. These properties of individuals are embedded within (d social and (e environmental determinants of health. Between these five components of health there are 10 complex interactions that justify viewing health as a CAS. In each patient, the current state of health as a CAS evolved from the past, will move forward to a new future, and has to be analyzed and treated as an autonomous whole. A diagnostic procedure is suggested as follows: together with the patient, the five components and 10 complex interactions are assessed. This may help patients to better understand their situations and to recognize possible next steps that may be useful in order to evolve toward better health by themselves. In this process mutual trust in the patient-physician interaction is critical. The described approach offers new possibilities for helping patients improve their health prospects.

  1. Bridging Mechanistic and Phenomenological Models of Complex Biological Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Transtrum, Mark K; Qiu, Peng

    2016-05-01

    The inherent complexity of biological systems gives rise to complicated mechanistic models with a large number of parameters. On the other hand, the collective behavior of these systems can often be characterized by a relatively small number of phenomenological parameters. We use the Manifold Boundary Approximation Method (MBAM) as a tool for deriving simple phenomenological models from complicated mechanistic models. The resulting models are not black boxes, but remain expressed in terms of the microscopic parameters. In this way, we explicitly connect the macroscopic and microscopic descriptions, characterize the equivalence class of distinct systems exhibiting the same range of collective behavior, and identify the combinations of components that function as tunable control knobs for the behavior. We demonstrate the procedure for adaptation behavior exhibited by the EGFR pathway. From a 48 parameter mechanistic model, the system can be effectively described by a single adaptation parameter τ characterizing the ratio of time scales for the initial response and recovery time of the system which can in turn be expressed as a combination of microscopic reaction rates, Michaelis-Menten constants, and biochemical concentrations. The situation is not unlike modeling in physics in which microscopically complex processes can often be renormalized into simple phenomenological models with only a few effective parameters. The proposed method additionally provides a mechanistic explanation for non-universal features of the behavior.

  2. Understanding the biological concept "bird": A kindergarten case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchholz, Dilek

    The purpose of this qualitative, multiple case study of 14 students in a metropolitan public school in the Deep South was to find out, during a period of three months, what these kindergarten-aged children knew about birds, whether this knowledge represented current scientific thought, if such science instruction meaningfully affected their prior knowledge, and if so, what the factors during instruction that seemed to influence their understanding of the concept of bird were. The research was conducted in three phases; preinstruction interviews, instruction, and postinstruction interviews. The theoretical framework for this research was based on the Human Constructivism theory of learning (Mintzes, Wandersee and Novak, 1997). Instructional materials consisted of carefully chosen books (both fiction and non-fiction), guest speakers, field trips, a live bird in the classroom, students' observation journals, teacher-made classification and sorting activities, and picture-based concept maps. The findings suggest that young children's knowledge of birds was limited chiefly to birds' anatomical and morphological characteristics, with repeated references being made by the children to human characteristics. There was a positive, significant difference in young children's pre- and postinstruction scientific knowledge of birds. Although performance varied from child to child after instruction, most children were able to identify some common birds by name. Just one child resisted conceptual change. Kindergarten children's basic knowledge of bird behavior was limited to flight and eating. Although the children had more conceptual knowledge at the end, understanding still appeared to be shallow. The children did develop their skill in observing markedly. It also became evident that these kindergarten children needed more (a) experience in asking questions, (b) practice in techniques of visual representation, and (c) language development in order to be able to explain what they

  3. Using STOQS to Understand Molecular Biology and Oceanographic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCann, M. P.; Ryan, J. P.; Messié, M.; Harvey, J.; Cline, D.; Michisaki, R.

    2014-12-01

    Advances in technology enable us to collect massive amounts of diverse data. With the ability to collect more data, the problem of comparative analysis becomes increasing difficult. The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) designed the Spatial Temporal Oceanographic Query System (STOQS) to create new capabilities for scientists to gain insight from data collected by oceanographic platforms. STOQS uses a geospatial database and a web-based user interface (UI) to allow scientists to explore large collections of data. The UI is optimized to provide a quick overview of data in spatial and temporal dimensions, as well as in parameter and platform space. A user may zoom into a feature of interest and select it, initiating a filter operation updating the UI with an overview of all the data in the new filtered selection. When details are desired, radio buttons and check boxes can be selected to generate a number of different types of visualizations. These include color-filled temporal section plots, parameter-parameter plots, and both 2D and 3D spatial visualizations. The ISO/IEC 19775-1, Extensible 3D (X3D) standard provides the technology for presenting 3D data in a web browser. STOQS has been in use at MBARI for four years and is helping us manage and visualize data from month-long multi-platform observational campaigns. These campaigns produce tens of millions of diverse measurements. These volumes are too great to really understand - even with an effective data exploration UI. Effective management of these diverse data in STOQS is achieved through a two-step harmonization process: 1) conversion of all data to OGC CF-NetCDF Discrete Sampling Geometry feature types and 2) loading all data into the STOQS data model. Having all of the data easily accessible via this data model made development of the UI possible. This same method of access is also being used for development of visualization and analysis programs for tasks that cannot be executed within the UI

  4. New biological research and understanding of Papanicolaou's test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Elizabeth R; George, Sophia H; Kobetz, Erin; Xu, Xiang-Xi

    2018-06-01

    The development of the Papanicolaou smear test by Dr. George Nicholas Papanicolaou (1883-1962) is one of the most significant achievements in screening for disease and cancer prevention in history. The Papanicolaou smear has been used for screening of cervical cancer since the 1950s. The test is technically straightforward and practical and based on a simple scientific observation: malignant cells have an aberrant nuclear morphology that can be distinguished from benign cells. Here, we review the scientific understanding that has been achieved and continues to be made on the causes and consequences of abnormal nuclear morphology, the basis of Dr. Papanicolaou's invention. The deformed nuclear shape is caused by the loss of lamina and nuclear envelope structural proteins. The consequences of a nuclear envelope defect include chromosomal numerical instability, altered chromatin organization and gene expression, and increased cell mobility because of a malleable nuclear envelope. HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) infection is recognized as the key etiology in the development of cervical cancer. Persistent HPV infection causes disruption of the nuclear lamina, which presents as a change in nuclear morphology detectable by a Papanicolaou smear. Thus, the causes and consequences of nuclear deformation are now linked to the mechanisms of viral carcinogenesis, and are still undergoing active investigation to reveal the details. Recently a statue was installed in front of the Papanicolaou's Cancer Research Building to honor the inventor. Remarkably, the invention nearly 60 years ago by Dr. Papanicolaou still exerts clinical impacts and inspires scientific inquiries. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. First-Year Biology Students' Understandings of Meiosis: An Investigation Using a Structural Theoretical Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, Frances; Pegg, John; Panizzon, Debra

    2009-01-01

    Meiosis is a biological concept that is both complex and important for students to learn. This study aims to explore first-year biology students' explanations of the process of meiosis, using an explicit theoretical framework provided by the Structure of the Observed Learning Outcome (SOLO) model. The research was based on responses of 334…

  6. Computational Cellular Dynamics Based on the Chemical Master Equation: A Challenge for Understanding Complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liang, Jie; Qian, Hong

    2010-01-01

    Modern molecular biology has always been a great source of inspiration for computational science. Half a century ago, the challenge from understanding macromolecular dynamics has led the way for computations to be part of the tool set to study molecular biology. Twenty-five years ago, the demand from genome science has inspired an entire generation of computer scientists with an interest in discrete mathematics to join the field that is now called bioinformatics. In this paper, we shall lay out a new mathematical theory for dynamics of biochemical reaction systems in a small volume (i.e., mesoscopic) in terms of a stochastic, discrete-state continuous-time formulation, called the chemical master equation (CME). Similar to the wavefunction in quantum mechanics, the dynamically changing probability landscape associated with the state space provides a fundamental characterization of the biochemical reaction system. The stochastic trajectories of the dynamics are best known through the simulations using the Gillespie algorithm. In contrast to the Metropolis algorithm, this Monte Carlo sampling technique does not follow a process with detailed balance. We shall show several examples how CMEs are used to model cellular biochemical systems. We shall also illustrate the computational challenges involved: multiscale phenomena, the interplay between stochasticity and nonlinearity, and how macroscopic determinism arises from mesoscopic dynamics. We point out recent advances in computing solutions to the CME, including exact solution of the steady state landscape and stochastic differential equations that offer alternatives to the Gilespie algorithm. We argue that the CME is an ideal system from which one can learn to understand "complex behavior" and complexity theory, and from which important biological insight can be gained.

  7. Quality of Life Philosophy III. Towards a New Biology: Understanding the Biological Connection between Quality of Life, Disease, and Healing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soren Ventegodt

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper addresses (in a philosophical way the complex and enigmatic interface between matter, life, and consciousness in modern medical science. The problem today in understanding living matter is not at the molecular level, but at the macro level where all molecular activities in the individual cell are coordinated, and especially at a higher level, where the activities of all the organism’s cells are coordinated. Although we understand very much of the body’s chemistry, we have only just started to get the gist of the tremendous organization of living matter. We are just beginning to acknowledge the enormous flow of information that is needed to make everything function in a healthy organism, including consciousness, where every cell does exactly what it has to do to make the organs function.A concept that seems to be able to bridge the scientifically very different domains of matter, life, and consciousness seems to be “biological information”. If a cell is seen as a liquid crystal in which the cell’s molecules constantly connect in firm mutual relationships only to dissolve again and become fluid and free, whenever the cell needs it, the backbone of the cell seems to be the information that organizes the cell. For example, in cell motion a cell is able to crawl with the help of a skeleton of fibers that can be created guided by biological information, whenever the cell needs the solidity provided by the fibers. The moment it has finished crawling or intends to crawl in another direction, these fibers will dissolve again. The fibers are made of millions of molecules that connect in an arranged pattern, and they dissolve when these molecules again let go of each other. How the cell precisely regulates such processes is today a complete mystery. How cells cocreate consciousness is also an enigma. All we can do is describe the cell and the organisms arising from its cells as filled with energy and information as well as an

  8. Effect of Process-Oriented Guided-Inquiry Learning on Non-majors Biology Students' Understanding of Biological Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wozniak, Breann M.

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of process-oriented guided-inquiry learning (POGIL) on non-majors college biology students' understanding of biological classification. This study addressed an area of science instruction, POGIL in the non-majors college biology laboratory, which has yet to be qualitatively and quantitatively researched. A concurrent triangulation mixed methods approach was used. Students' understanding of biological classification was measured in two areas: scores on pre and posttests (consisting of 11 multiple choice questions), and conceptions of classification as elicited in pre and post interviews and instructor reflections. Participants were Minnesota State University, Mankato students enrolled in BIOL 100 Summer Session. One section was taught with the traditional curriculum (n = 6) and the other section in the POGIL curriculum (n = 10) developed by the researcher. Three students from each section were selected to take part in pre and post interviews. There were no significant differences within each teaching method (p familiar animal categories and aquatic habitats, unfamiliar organisms, combining and subdividing initial groupings, and the hierarchical nature of classification. The POGIL students were the only group to surpass these challenges after the teaching intervention. This study shows that POGIL is an effective technique at eliciting students' misconceptions, and addressing these misconceptions, leading to an increase in student understanding of biological classification.

  9. Conceptions of Memorizing and Understanding in Learning, and Self-Efficacy Held by University Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tzu-Chiang; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2015-01-01

    This study aims to explore Taiwanese university students' conceptions of learning biology as memorizing or as understanding, and their self-efficacy. To this end, two questionnaires were utilized to survey 293 Taiwanese university students with biology-related majors. A questionnaire for measuring students' conceptions of memorizing and…

  10. The complex jujube genome provides insights into fruit tree biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Meng-Jun; Zhao, Jin; Cai, Qing-Le; Liu, Guo-Cheng; Wang, Jiu-Rui; Zhao, Zhi-Hui; Liu, Ping; Dai, Li; Yan, Guijun; Wang, Wen-Jiang; Li, Xian-Song; Chen, Yan; Sun, Yu-Dong; Liu, Zhi-Guo; Lin, Min-Juan; Xiao, Jing; Chen, Ying-Ying; Li, Xiao-Feng; Wu, Bin; Ma, Yong; Jian, Jian-Bo; Yang, Wei; Yuan, Zan; Sun, Xue-Chao; Wei, Yan-Li; Yu, Li-Li; Zhang, Chi; Liao, Sheng-Guang; He, Rong-Jun; Guang, Xuan-Min; Wang, Zhuo; Zhang, Yue-Yang; Luo, Long-Hai

    2014-10-28

    The jujube (Ziziphus jujuba Mill.), a member of family Rhamnaceae, is a major dry fruit and a traditional herbal medicine for more than one billion people. Here we present a high-quality sequence for the complex jujube genome, the first genome sequence of Rhamnaceae, using an integrated strategy. The final assembly spans 437.65 Mb (98.6% of the estimated) with 321.45 Mb anchored to the 12 pseudo-chromosomes and contains 32,808 genes. The jujube genome has undergone frequent inter-chromosome fusions and segmental duplications, but no recent whole-genome duplication. Further analyses of the jujube-specific genes and transcriptome data from 15 tissues reveal the molecular mechanisms underlying some specific properties of the jujube. Its high vitamin C content can be attributed to a unique high level expression of genes involved in both biosynthesis and regeneration. Our study provides insights into jujube-specific biology and valuable genomic resources for the improvement of Rhamnaceae plants and other fruit trees.

  11. A microfluidic dialysis device for complex biological mixture SERS analysis

    KAUST Repository

    Perozziello, Gerardo

    2015-08-01

    In this paper, we present a microfluidic device fabricated with a simple and inexpensive process allowing rapid filtering of peptides from a complex mixture. The polymer microfluidic device can be used for sample preparation in biological applications. The device is fabricated by micromilling and solvent assisted bonding, in which a microdialysis membrane (cut-off of 12-14 kDa) is sandwiched in between an upper and a bottom microfluidic chamber. An external frame connects the microfluidic device to external tubes, microvalves and syringe pumps. Bonding strength and interface sealing are pneumatically tested. Microfluidic protocols are also described by using the presented device to filter a sample composed of specific peptides (MW 1553.73 Da, at a concentration of 1.0 ng/μl) derived from the BRCA1 protein, a tumor-suppressor molecule which plays a pivotal role in the development of breast cancer, and albumin (MW 66.5 kDa, at a concentration of 35 μg/μl), the most represented protein in human plasma. The filtered samples coming out from the microfluidic device were subsequently deposited on a SERS (surface enhanced Raman scattering) substrate for further analysis by Raman spectroscopy. By using this approach, we were able to sort the small peptides from the bigger and highly concentrated protein albumin and to detect them by using a label-free technique at a resolution down to 1.0 ng/μl.

  12. Enacting understanding of inclusion in complex contexts: classroom ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Hennie

    2015-08-14

    Aug 14, 2015 ... Dan Tlale. Department of Inclusive Education, College of Education, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa ..... challenges and teachers' understanding of inclusive ..... agency.org/sites/default/files/Profile-of-Inclusive-.

  13. Complexity and simplification in understanding recruitment in benthic populations

    KAUST Repository

    Pineda, Jesú s; Reyns, Nathalie B.; Starczak, Victoria R.

    2008-01-01

    reduces the number of processes and makes the problem manageable. We discuss how simplifications and "broad-brush first-order approaches" may muddle our understanding of recruitment. Lack of empirical determination of the fundamental processes often

  14. Understanding global health governance as a complex adaptive system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Peter S

    2011-01-01

    The transition from international to global health reflects the rapid growth in the numbers and nature of stakeholders in health, as well as the constant change embodied in the process of globalisation itself. This paper argues that global health governance shares the characteristics of complex adaptive systems, with its multiple and diverse players, and their polyvalent and constantly evolving relationships, and rich and dynamic interactions. The sheer quantum of initiatives, the multiple networks through which stakeholders (re)configure their influence, the range of contexts in which development for health is played out - all compound the complexity of this system. This paper maps out the characteristics of complex adaptive systems as they apply to global health governance, linking them to developments in the past two decades, and the multiple responses to these changes. Examining global health governance through the frame of complexity theory offers insight into the current dynamics of governance, and while providing a framework for making meaning of the whole, opens up ways of accessing this complexity through local points of engagement.

  15. Understanding sustainability from an exergetic frame in complex adaptive systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aguilar Hernandez, Glem Alonso

    2017-01-01

    The concept of sustainability was developed from thermodynamic properties applied to complex adaptive systems. The origins of the perception about sustainable development and limitation in its application to analyze the interaction between a system and its surroundings were described. The properties of a complex adaptive system were taken as basis to determine how a system can to be affected by the resources restriction and irreversibility of the processes. The complex adaptive system was understood using the first and second law of thermodynamics, generating a conceptual framework to define the sustainability of a system. The contributions developed by exergy were shown to analyze the sustainability of systems in an economic, social and environmental context [es

  16. Characterising the development of the understanding of human body systems in high-school biology students - a longitudinal study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snapir, Zohar; Eberbach, Catherine; Ben-Zvi-Assaraf, Orit; Hmelo-Silver, Cindy; Tripto, Jaklin

    2017-10-01

    Science education today has become increasingly focused on research into complex natural, social and technological systems. In this study, we examined the development of high-school biology students' systems understanding of the human body, in a three-year longitudinal study. The development of the students' system understanding was evaluated using the Components Mechanisms Phenomena (CMP) framework for conceptual representation. We coded and analysed the repertory grid personal constructs of 67 high-school biology students at 4 points throughout the study. Our data analysis builds on the assumption that systems understanding entails a perception of all the system categories, including structures within the system (its Components), specific processes and interactions at the macro and micro levels (Mechanisms), and the Phenomena that present the macro scale of processes and patterns within a system. Our findings suggest that as the learning process progressed, the systems understanding of our students became more advanced, moving forward within each of the major CMP categories. Moreover, there was an increase in the mechanism complexity presented by the students, manifested by more students describing mechanisms at the molecular level. Thus, the 'mechanism' category and the micro level are critical components that enable students to understand system-level phenomena such as homeostasis.

  17. Understanding dyadic promoter-stakeholder relations in complex projects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janita Vos

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we propose a Bilateral Double Motive framework of stakeholder cooperation in complex projects. The framework analyses and explains dyadic promoter-stakeholder relationships at a micro level by acknowledging both transactional and relational motives. We demonstrate the framework’s usefulness by illustrating its explanatory power in two instances of cooperation and two of non-cooperation within two health information technology projects. The study contributes to project management theory through its combined focus on transactional and relational motives. Further, the study contributes to practice by providing a tool for planning and evaluating cooperation in health Information Technology projects and similar complex multi-stakeholder environments.

  18. Understanding Educational Change through the Lens of Complexity Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girtz, Suzann

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate four attractor states in schools through the perceptions of formal leaders that engaged in and reflected upon school reform regarding the Millennial generation. The term attractor was used as a metaphor for a habitual pattern, gleaned from complexity science which informs of new ways in which to…

  19. Understanding of photosynthesis among students of biology and non-biology programmes of study

    OpenAIRE

    Lekan, Erika

    2016-01-01

    Photosynthesis is one of the most important processes on Earth, thus knowing at least its basic principles is essential. In Slovenia, the students become acquainted with these principles in the fifth form of elementary school. Due to the complexity of the photosynthesis process, the students hold misconceptions about it since the very beginning of the learning process. Due to several factors and reasons, these misconceptions persist throughout the secondary school and university studies. ...

  20. Understanding vaginal microbiome complexity from an ecological perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hickey, Roxana J.; Zhou, Xia; Pierson, Jacob D.; Ravel, Jacques; Forney, Larry J.

    2012-01-01

    The various microbiota normally associated with the human body have an important influence on human development, physiology, immunity, and nutrition. This is certainly true for the vagina wherein communities of mutualistic bacteria constitute the first line of defense for the host by excluding invasive, nonindigenous organisms that may cause disease. In recent years much has been learned about the bacterial species composition of these communities and how they differ between individuals of different ages and ethnicities. A deeper understanding of their origins and the interrelationships of constituent species is needed to understand how and why they change over time or in response to changes in the host environment. Moreover, there are few unifying theories to explain the ecological dynamics of vaginal ecosystems as they respond to disturbances caused by menses and human activities such as intercourse, douching, and other habits and practices. This fundamental knowledge is needed to diagnose and assess risk to disease. Here we summarize what is known about the species composition, structure, and function of bacterial communities in the human vagina and the applicability of ecological models of community structure and function to understanding the dynamics of this and other ecosystems that comprise the human microbiome. PMID:22683415

  1. Biological significance of complex N-glycans in plants and their impact on plant physiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strasser, Richard

    2014-01-01

    Asparagine (N)-linked protein glycosylation is a ubiquitous co- and post-translational modification which can alter the biological function of proteins and consequently affects the development, growth, and physiology of organisms. Despite an increasing knowledge of N-glycan biosynthesis and processing, we still understand very little about the biological function of individual N-glycan structures in plants. In particular, the N-glycan-processing steps mediated by Golgi-resident enzymes create a structurally diverse set of protein-linked carbohydrate structures. Some of these complex N-glycan modifications like the presence of β1,2-xylose, core α1,3-fucose or the Lewis a-epitope are characteristic for plants and are evolutionary highly conserved. In mammals, complex N-glycans are involved in different cellular processes including molecular recognition and signaling events. In contrast, the complex N-glycan function is still largely unknown in plants. Here, in this short review, I focus on important recent developments and discuss their implications for future research in plant glycobiology and plant biotechnology.

  2. Comprehension of complex biological processes by analytical methods: how far can we go using mass spectrometry?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gerner, C.

    2013-01-01

    Comprehensive understanding of complex biological processes is the basis for many biomedical issues of great relevance for modern society including risk assessment, drug development, quality control of industrial products and many more. Screening methods provide means for investigating biological samples without research hypothesis. However, the first boom of analytical screening efforts has passed and we again need to ask whether and how to apply screening methods. Mass spectrometry is a modern tool with unrivalled analytical capacities. This applies to all relevant characteristics of analytical methods such as specificity, sensitivity, accuracy, multiplicity and diversity of applications. Indeed, mass spectrometry qualifies to deal with complexity. Chronic inflammation is a common feature of almost all relevant diseases challenging our modern society; these diseases are apparently highly diverse and include arteriosclerosis, cancer, back pain, neurodegenerative diseases, depression and other. The complexity of mechanisms regulating chronic inflammation is the reason for the practical challenge to deal with it. The presentation shall give an overview of capabilities and limitations of the application of this analytical tool to solve critical questions with great relevance for our society. (author)

  3. Understanding Biological Roles of Venoms Among the Caenophidia: The Importance of Rear-Fanged Snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackessy, Stephen P; Saviola, Anthony J

    2016-11-01

    Snake venoms represent an adaptive trophic response to the challenges confronting a limbless predator for overcoming combative prey, and this chemical means of subduing prey shows several dominant phenotypes. Many front-fanged snakes, particularly vipers, feed on various vertebrate and invertebrate prey species, and some of their venom components (e.g., metalloproteinases, cobratoxin) appear to have been selected for "broad-brush" incapacitation of different prey taxa. Using proteomic and genomic techniques, the compositional diversity of front-fanged snakes is becoming well characterized; however, this is not the case for most rear-fanged colubroid snakes. Because these species consume a high diversity of prey, and because venoms are primarily a trophic adaptation, important clues for understanding specific selective pressures favoring venom component composition will be found among rear-fanged snake venoms. Rear-fanged snakes typically (but not always) produce venoms with lower complexity than front-fanged snakes, and there are even fewer dominant (and, arguably, biologically most relevant) venom protein families. We have demonstrated taxon-specific toxic effects, where lizards and birds show high susceptibility while mammals are largely unaffected, for both Old World and New World rear-fanged snakes, strongly indicating a causal link between toxin evolution and prey preference. New data are presented on myotoxin a, showing that the extremely rapid paralysis induced by this rattlesnake toxin is specific for rodents, and that myotoxin a is ineffectual against lizards. Relatively few rear-fanged snake venoms have been characterized, and basic natural history data are largely lacking, but directed sampling of specialized species indicates that novel compounds are likely among these specialists, particularly among those species feeding on invertebrate prey such as scorpions and centipedes. Because many of the more than 2200 species of colubroid snakes are rear

  4. Context dependence of students' views about the role of equations in understanding biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watkins, Jessica; Elby, Andrew

    2013-06-01

    Students' epistemological views about biology--their ideas about what "counts" as learning and understanding biology--play a role in how they approach their courses and respond to reforms. As introductory biology courses incorporate more physics and quantitative reasoning, student attitudes about the role of equations in biology become especially relevant. However, as documented in research in physics education, students' epistemologies are not always stable and fixed entities; they can be dynamic and context-dependent. In this paper, we examine an interview with an introductory student in which she discusses the use of equations in her reformed biology course. In one part of the interview, she expresses what sounds like an entrenched negative stance toward the role equations can play in understanding biology. However, later in the interview, when discussing a different biology topic, she takes a more positive stance toward the value of equations. These results highlight how a given student can have diverse ways of thinking about the value of bringing physics and math into biology. By highlighting how attitudes can shift in response to different tasks, instructional environments, and contextual cues, we emphasize the need to attend to these factors, rather than treating students' beliefs as fixed and stable.

  5. "Touching Triton": Building Student Understanding of Complex Disease Risk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loftin, Madelene; East, Kelly; Hott, Adam; Lamb, Neil

    2016-01-01

    Life science classrooms often emphasize the exception to the rule when it comes to teaching genetics, focusing heavily on rare single-gene and Mendelian traits. By contrast, the vast majority of human traits and diseases are caused by more complicated interactions between genetic and environmental factors. Research indicates that students have a deterministic view of genetics, generalize Mendelian inheritance patterns to all traits, and have unrealistic expectations of genetic technologies. The challenge lies in how to help students analyze complex disease risk with a lack of curriculum materials. Providing open access to both content resources and an engaging storyline can be achieved using a "serious game" model. "Touching Triton" was developed as a serious game in which students are asked to analyze data from a medical record, family history, and genomic report in order to develop an overall lifetime risk estimate of six common, complex diseases. Evaluation of student performance shows significant learning gains in key content areas along with a high level of engagement.

  6. Fusion in computer vision understanding complex visual content

    CERN Document Server

    Ionescu, Bogdan; Piatrik, Tomas

    2014-01-01

    This book presents a thorough overview of fusion in computer vision, from an interdisciplinary and multi-application viewpoint, describing successful approaches, evaluated in the context of international benchmarks that model realistic use cases. Features: examines late fusion approaches for concept recognition in images and videos; describes the interpretation of visual content by incorporating models of the human visual system with content understanding methods; investigates the fusion of multi-modal features of different semantic levels, as well as results of semantic concept detections, fo

  7. Biological activities of some Fluoroquinolones-metal complexes

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    McRoy

    DNA cleavage studies of some synthesized metal complexes of fluoroquinolone ... Although the FQs are generally characterized by a broad antimicrobial spectrum ..... six Coordinate 3rd metal complexes with N- (5 –Phenyl-3,4- thiadiazol-2-yl).

  8. Quantifying ‘Causality’ in Complex Systems: Understanding Transfer Entropy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdul Razak, Fatimah; Jensen, Henrik Jeldtoft

    2014-01-01

    ‘Causal’ direction is of great importance when dealing with complex systems. Often big volumes of data in the form of time series are available and it is important to develop methods that can inform about possible causal connections between the different observables. Here we investigate the ability of the Transfer Entropy measure to identify causal relations embedded in emergent coherent correlations. We do this by firstly applying Transfer Entropy to an amended Ising model. In addition we use a simple Random Transition model to test the reliability of Transfer Entropy as a measure of ‘causal’ direction in the presence of stochastic fluctuations. In particular we systematically study the effect of the finite size of data sets. PMID:24955766

  9. Understanding Complex Human Ecosystems: The Case of Ecotourism on Bonaire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Abel

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available It is suggested that ecotourism development on the island of Bonaire can be productively understood as a perturbation of a complex human ecosystem. Inputs associated with ecotourism have fueled transformations of the island ecology and sociocultural system. The results of this study indicate that Bonaire's social and economic hierarchy is approaching a new, stable systems state following a 50-yr transition begun by government and industry that stabilized with the appearance of ecotourism development and population growth. Ecotourism can be understood to have "filled in" the middle of the production hierarchy of Bonaire. Interpreted from this perspective, population growth has completed the transformation by expanding into production niches at smaller scales in the production hierarchy. Both a consequence and a cause, ecotourism has transformed the island's social structure and demography. The theory and methods applied in this case study of interdisciplinary research in the field of human ecosystems are also presented.

  10. Understanding implementation in complex public organizations – implication for practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gry Cecilie Høiland

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The effective implementation of politically initiated public service innovations to the front-lines of the public service organization, where the innovation is to be applied, is a challenge that both practitioners and researchers struggle to solve. We highlight the importance of analysing contextual factors at several levels of the implementation system, as well as the importance of considering how the practical everyday work situations of the front-line workers influence their application of the innovation in question. We illustrate this by exploring the implementation process of a specific work inclusion measure, looking at its wider context and some of its implementation outcomes at a specific public agency. The intention is to illustrate the significance of considering the contextual complexity influencing implementation work as a reminder for practitioners to take this into account in their planning and practices.

  11. Network biology: Describing biological systems by complex networks. Comment on "Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review" by M. Gosak et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jalili, Mahdi

    2018-03-01

    I enjoyed reading Gosak et al. review on analysing biological systems from network science perspective [1]. Network science, first started within Physics community, is now a mature multidisciplinary field of science with many applications ranging from Ecology to biology, medicine, social sciences, engineering and computer science. Gosak et al. discussed how biological systems can be modelled and described by complex network theory which is an important application of network science. Although there has been considerable progress in network biology over the past two decades, this is just the beginning and network science has a great deal to offer to biology and medical sciences.

  12. A modeling process to understand complex system architectures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Santiago Balestrini

    2009-12-01

    In recent decades, several tools have been developed by the armed forces, and their contractors, to test the capability of a force. These campaign level analysis tools, often times characterized as constructive simulations are generally expensive to create and execute, and at best they are extremely difficult to verify and validate. This central observation, that the analysts are relying more and more on constructive simulations to predict the performance of future networks of systems, leads to the two central objectives of this thesis: (1) to enable the quantitative comparison of architectures in terms of their ability to satisfy a capability without resorting to constructive simulations, and (2) when constructive simulations must be created, to quantitatively determine how to spend the modeling effort amongst the different system classes. The first objective led to Hypothesis A, the first main hypotheses, which states that by studying the relationships between the entities that compose an architecture, one can infer how well it will perform a given capability. The method used to test the hypothesis is based on two assumptions: (1) the capability can be defined as a cycle of functions, and that it (2) must be possible to estimate the probability that a function-based relationship occurs between any two types of entities. If these two requirements are met, then by creating random functional networks, different architectures can be compared in terms of their ability to satisfy a capability. In order to test this hypothesis, a novel process for creating representative functional networks of large-scale system architectures was developed. The process, named the Digraph Modeling for Architectures (DiMA), was tested by comparing its results to those of complex constructive simulations. Results indicate that if the inputs assigned to DiMA are correct (in the tests they were based on time-averaged data obtained from the ABM), DiMA is able to identify which of any two

  13. A Thai pre-service teacher's understanding of nature of science in biology teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srisawat, Akkarawat; Aiemsum-ang, Napapan; Yuenyong, Chokchai

    2018-01-01

    This study was conducted on the effect of understanding and instruction of the nature of science of Ms. Wanida, a pre-service student under science education program in biology, Faculty of Education, Khon Kaen University. Wanida was a teaching practicum student majoring in biology at Khon Kaen University Demonstration School (Modindaeng). She was teaching biology for 38 Grade 10 students. Methodology regarded interpretive paradigm. The study aimed to examine 1) Wanida's understanding of the nature of science, 2) Wanida's instruction of the nature of science, 3 students' understanding of the nature of science from Wanida's instruction, and 4) the effects of Wanida's understanding and instruction of the nature of science on students' understanding of the nature of science from Wanida's instruction. Tools of interpretation included teaching observation, a semi-structured interview, open-ended questionnaire, and an observation record form for the instruction of the nature of science. The data obtained was interpreted, encoded, and classified, using the descriptive statistics. The findings indicated that Wanida held good understanding of the nature of science. She could apply the deficient nature of science approach mostly, followed by the implicit nature of science approach. Unfortunately, she could not show her teaching as explicit nature of science. However, her students' the understanding of the nature of science was good.

  14. Does constructive neutral evolution play an important role in the origin of cellular complexity? Making sense of the origins and uses of biological complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speijer, Dave

    2011-05-01

    Recently, constructive neutral evolution has been touted as an important concept for the understanding of the emergence of cellular complexity. It has been invoked to help explain the development and retention of, amongst others, RNA splicing, RNA editing and ribosomal and mitochondrial respiratory chain complexity. The theory originated as a welcome explanation of isolated small scale cellular idiosyncrasies and as a reaction to 'overselectionism'. Here I contend, that in its extended form, it has major conceptual problems, can not explain observed patterns of complex processes, is too easily dismissive of alternative selectionist models, underestimates the creative force of complexity as such, and--if seen as a major evolutionary mechanism for all organisms--could stifle further thought regarding the evolution of highly complex biological processes. Copyright © 2011 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Venom Resistance as a Model for Understanding the Molecular Basis of Complex Coevolutionary Adaptations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holding, Matthew L; Drabeck, Danielle H; Jansa, Sharon A; Gibbs, H Lisle

    2016-11-01

    SynopsisVenom and venom resistance are molecular phenotypes widely considered to have diversified through coevolution between predators and prey. However, while evolutionary and functional studies on venom have been extensive, little is known about the molecular basis, variation, and complexity of venom resistance. We review known mechanisms of venom resistance and relate these mechanisms to their predicted impact on coevolutionary dynamics with venomous enemies. We then describe two conceptual approaches which can be used to examine venom/resistance systems. At the intraspecific level, tests of local adaptation in venom and resistance phenotypes can identify the functional mechanisms governing the outcomes of coevolution. At deeper evolutionary timescales, the combination of phylogenetically informed analyses of protein evolution coupled with studies of protein function promise to elucidate the mode and tempo of evolutionary change on potentially coevolving genes. We highlight case studies that use each approach to extend our knowledge of these systems as well as address larger questions about coevolutionary dynamics. We argue that resistance and venom are phenotypic traits which hold exceptional promise for investigating the mechanisms, dynamics, and outcomes of coevolution at the molecular level. Furthermore, extending the understanding of single gene-for-gene interactions to the whole resistance and venom phenotypes may provide a model system for examining the molecular and evolutionary dynamics of complex multi-gene interactions. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Methylene Diphosphonate Chemical and Biological control of MDP complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aungurarat, Angkanan; Ngamprayad, Tippanan

    2000-01-01

    Technetium-9 9m MDP easy prepared from MDP kits which different sources such as OAP (In house), SIGMA. The resulting Tc 9 9m -MDP preparations were controlled in chemical and biological tests to compare the different results in these cases: radiochemical purity, the quantity of starting material and biodistribution result

  17. Biological activities of some Fluoroquinolones-metal complexes

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    McRoy

    Background: Metal ions play a vital role in the design of more biologically active drugs. Aim: The paper reviewed the .... 2H2O by direct reaction of copper(II) sulphate pentahydrate with ciprofloxacin in distilled water. ... membered ring and the chloride ion completes the seven coordination around the Ca2+ion.[37-39].

  18. Complexity in practice: understanding primary care as a complex adaptive system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beverley Ellis

    2010-06-01

    Conclusions The results are real-world exemplars of the emergent properties of complex adaptive systems. Improving clinical governance in primary care requires both complex social interactions and underpinning informatics. The socio-technical lessons learned from this research should inform future management approaches.

  19. Simulation and Analysis of Complex Biological Processes: an Organisation Modelling Perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bosse, T.; Jonker, C.M.; Treur, J.

    2005-01-01

    This paper explores how the dynamics of complex biological processes can be modelled and simulated as an organisation of multiple agents. This modelling perspective identifies organisational structure occurring in complex decentralised processes and handles complexity of the analysis of the dynamics

  20. Temperature-dependent phase transitions in zeptoliter volumes of a complex biological membrane

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nikiforov, Maxim P; Jesse, Stephen; Kalinin, Sergei V; Hohlbauch, Sophia; Proksch, Roger; King, William P; Voitchovsky, Kislon; Contera, Sonia Antoranz

    2011-01-01

    Phase transitions in purple membrane have been a topic of debate for the past two decades. In this work we present studies of a reversible transition of purple membrane in the 50-60 deg. C range in zeptoliter volumes under different heating regimes (global heating and local heating). The temperature of the reversible phase transition is 52 ± 5 deg. C for both local and global heating, supporting the hypothesis that this transition is mainly due to a structural rearrangement of bR molecules and trimers. To achieve high resolution measurements of temperature-dependent phase transitions, a new scanning probe microscopy-based method was developed. We believe that our new technique can be extended to other biological systems and can contribute to the understanding of inhomogeneous phase transitions in complex systems.

  1. How do precision medicine and system biology response to human body's complex adaptability?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Bing

    2016-12-01

    In the field of life sciences, although system biology and "precision medicine" introduce some complex scientifific methods and techniques, it is still based on the "analysis-reconstruction" of reductionist theory as a whole. Adaptability of complex system increase system behaviour uncertainty as well as the difficulties of precise identifification and control. It also put systems biology research into trouble. To grasp the behaviour and characteristics of organism fundamentally, systems biology has to abandon the "analysis-reconstruction" concept. In accordance with the guidelines of complexity science, systems biology should build organism model from holistic level, just like the Chinese medicine did in dealing with human body and disease. When we study the living body from the holistic level, we will fifind the adaptability of complex system is not the obstacle that increases the diffificulty of problem solving. It is the "exceptional", "right-hand man" that helping us to deal with the complexity of life more effectively.

  2. The Origin and Evolution of Complex Enough Systems in Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Brändas, Erkki

    2017-01-01

    Recent criticisms of Neo-Darwinism are considered and disputed within the setting of recent advances in chemical physics. A related query, viz., the ontological thesis, that everything is physical, confronts a crucial test on the validity of reductionism as a fundamental approach to science.  While traditional ‘physicalism’ interprets evolution as a sequence of physical accidents governed by the second law of thermodynamics, the concepts of biology concern processes that owe their goal-direct...

  3. Analysis of complex networks from biology to linguistics

    CERN Document Server

    Dehmer, Matthias

    2009-01-01

    Mathematical problems such as graph theory problems are of increasing importance for the analysis of modelling data in biomedical research such as in systems biology, neuronal network modelling etc. This book follows a new approach of including graph theory from a mathematical perspective with specific applications of graph theory in biomedical and computational sciences. The book is written by renowned experts in the field and offers valuable background information for a wide audience.

  4. Complex-forming capacity of some biologically active imidazoles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lenarcik, B; Wisniewski, M

    1983-01-01

    By using the potentiometric and spectrophotometric methods, formation of Co(2), Cu(2), Zn(2), Ni(2) and Cd(2) complexes of (3S-cis)-3-ethyl-dihydro-4-((1-methyl-1H-imidazol-5-yl)-methyl)-2(3H)-furanone (pilocarpine, PLC), 4,5-dihydro-2-(phenylmethyl)-1H-imidazole (tolazoline, TLZ), 2-methyl-5-nitro-1H-imidazole-1-ethanol (metronidazole, MET) and 1H-imidazole-4-ethanamine (histamine, HIST) was investigated. The stability constants, ..beta../sub n/, of these complexes were determined. It was shown that the electron-donor strength of the ligands was controlled by the heterocyclic nitrogen atom, and that the formation of the Zn(2)-PLC complex was accompanied by the change in the structure of the coordination sphere of the metal. With Cu(2), the PLC and TLZ ligands were shown to enhance the Jahn-Teller deformation.

  5. Characterization and biological activity of Solidago canadensis complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Šutovská, M; Capek, P; Kocmálová, M; Fraňová, S; Pawlaczyk, I; Gancarz, R

    2013-01-01

    Polyphenolic-polysaccharide-protein complex has been isolated from flowers of Solidago canadensis L. by hot alkaline extraction procedure. Compositional analyses of S canadensis complex revealed the presence of carbohydrates (43 wt%), protein (27 wt%), phenolics (12 wt%), uronic acids (10 wt%) and inorganic material (8 wt%). The carbohydrate part was rich in neutral sugars (81 wt%) while uronids were determined in lower amount (19 wt%). Monosaccharide analysis of carbohydrate part revealed the presence of five main sugar components, i.e. rhamnose (~23 wt%), arabinose (~20 wt%), uronic acids (~19 wt%), galactose (~17 wt%) and glucose (~14 wt%), and indicated thus the presence of rhamnogalacturonan and arabinogalactan in S. canadensis complex. HPLC analysis of complex showed one single peak of molecule mass at 11.2 kDa. Antitussive activity tests, performed in three doses of Solidago complex, showed the reduction of the number of cough efforts in the dose-dependent manner. Higher doses (50 and 75 mg/kg b.w.) were shown to be by 15 and 20% more effective than that of lower one (25mg/kg b.w.). However, the antitussive effect of the highest dose (75 mg/kg b.w.) was by 10% lower in comparison with that of codeine, the strongest antitussive agent. Besides, the highest dose of the complex (75 mg/kg b.w.) significantly decreased values of specific airways resistance and their effect remained longer as that of salbutamol, a representative of classic antiasthmatic drugs. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Physicochemical and biological properties of new steroid metal complexes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huber, R.

    1980-04-01

    The aim of this investigation was to prepare stable steroid metal chelates by chemical conversion of the natural steroid hormones testerone, 5α-dihydrotestosterone (5α-DHT) and estradiol and to characterize these by means of their spectroscopic and other physico-chemical properties. In addition, various measuring techniques for the qualitative and quantitative study of complex stabilities and hydrolytic properties were employed. The distribution of some tritiated steroid metal complexes in the tissues of rats was tested using whole animal autoradiography, mainly with a view to identifying whether selective concentration occurs in certain organs. (orig.) [de

  7. A comprehensive in vitro biological investigation of metal complexes ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Md. Mahabob Ullah Mazumder

    ... Journal of Medicine journal homepage: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ajme .... two new complexes containing Fe (III) and Mo(VI) of two tridentate ONO donor · sets ligands. Der Chem Sin. .... Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2014;7(4):453–463. 13.

  8. Synthesis, structural, spectroscopic and biological studies of Schiff base complexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diab, M. A.; El-Sonbati, A. Z.; Shoair, A. F.; Eldesoky, A. M.; El-Far, N. M.

    2017-08-01

    Schiff base ligand 4-((pyridin-2- yl)methyleneamino)-1,2-dihydro-2,3-dimethyl-1-phenylpyrazol-5-one (PDMP) and its complexes were prepared and characterized on the basis of elemental analysis, IR, mass spectra and thermogravimetric analysis. All results confirm that the complexes have 1:1 (M: PMDP) stoichiometric formula [M(PMDP)Cl2H2O ] (M = Cu(II), Co(II), Ni(II) and Mn(II)), [Cd(PMDP)Cl2] and the ligand behaves as a bi/tridentate forming five-membered chelating ring towards the metal ions, bonding through azomethine nitrogen/exocyclic carbonyl oxygen, azomethine pyridine nitrogen and exocyclic carbonyl oxygen. The shift in the band positions of the groups involved in coordination has been utilized to estimate the metal-nitrogen and/or oxygen bond lengths. The complexes of Co(II), Ni(II) and Cu(II) are paramagnetic and the magnetic as well as spectral data suggest octahedral geometry, whereas the Cd(II) complex is tetrahedral. The XRD studies show that both the ligand and its metal complexes (1 and 3) show polycrystalline with crystal structure. Molecular docking was used to predict the binding between PMDP ligand and the receptors. The corrosion inhibition of mild steel in 2 M HCl solution by PDMP was explored utilizing potentiodynamic polarization, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and (EFM) electrochemical frequency modulation method. Potentiodynamic polarization demonstrated that PDMP compound is mixed-type inhibitor. EIS spectra exhibit one capacitive loop and confirm the protective ability. The percentage of inhibition efficiency was found to increase with increasing the inhibitor concentration.

  9. Understanding schizophrenia as a disorder of consciousness: biological correlates and translational implications from quantum theory perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatasubramanian, Ganesan

    2015-04-30

    From neurophenomenological perspectives, schizophrenia has been conceptualized as "a disorder with heterogeneous manifestations that can be integrally understood to involve fundamental perturbations in consciousness". While these theoretical constructs based on consciousness facilitate understanding the 'gestalt' of schizophrenia, systematic research to unravel translational implications of these models is warranted. To address this, one needs to begin with exploration of plausible biological underpinnings of "perturbed consciousness" in schizophrenia. In this context, an attractive proposition to understand the biology of consciousness is "the orchestrated object reduction (Orch-OR) theory" which invokes quantum processes in the microtubules of neurons. The Orch-OR model is particularly important for understanding schizophrenia especially due to the shared 'scaffold' of microtubules. The initial sections of this review focus on the compelling evidence to support the view that "schizophrenia is a disorder of consciousness" through critical summary of the studies that have demonstrated self-abnormalities, aberrant time perception as well as dysfunctional intentional binding in this disorder. Subsequently, these findings are linked with 'Orch-OR theory' through the research evidence for aberrant neural oscillations as well as microtubule abnormalities observed in schizophrenia. Further sections emphasize the applicability and translational implications of Orch-OR theory in the context of schizophrenia and elucidate the relevance of quantum biology to understand the origins of this puzzling disorder as "fundamental disturbances in consciousness".

  10. Understanding and Enhancing Soil Biological Health: The Solution for Reversing Soil Degradation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Michael Lehman

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Our objective is to provide an optimistic strategy for reversing soil degradation by increasing public and private research efforts to understand the role of soil biology, particularly microbiology, on the health of our world’s soils. We begin by defining soil quality/soil health (which we consider to be interchangeable terms, characterizing healthy soil resources, and relating the significance of soil health to agroecosystems and their functions. We examine how soil biology influences soil health and how biological properties and processes contribute to sustainability of agriculture and ecosystem services. We continue by examining what can be done to manipulate soil biology to: (i increase nutrient availability for production of high yielding, high quality crops; (ii protect crops from pests, pathogens, weeds; and (iii manage other factors limiting production, provision of ecosystem services, and resilience to stresses like droughts. Next we look to the future by asking what needs to be known about soil biology that is not currently recognized or fully understood and how these needs could be addressed using emerging research tools. We conclude, based on our perceptions of how new knowledge regarding soil biology will help make agriculture more sustainable and productive, by recommending research emphases that should receive first priority through enhanced public and private research in order to reverse the trajectory toward global soil degradation.

  11. Synthesis, Physical Characterization and Biological Activity of Some Schiff Base Complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Rajavel

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Structural modification of organic molecule has considerable biological relevance. Further, coordination of a biomolecules to the metal ions significantly alters the effectiveness of the biomolecules. In view of the antimicrobial activity ligand [bis-(2-aminobenzaldehyde] malonoyl dihydrazone], metal complexes with Cu(II, Ni(II, Zn(II and oxovanadium(IV have been synthesized and found to be potential antimicrobial agents. An attempt is also made to correlate the biological activities with geometry of the complexes. The complexes have been characterized by elemental analysis, molar conductance, spectra and cyclicvoltammetric measurements. The structural assessment of the complexes has been carried out based on electronic, infrared and molar conductivity values.

  12. Exploitation of complex network topology for link prediction in biological interactomes

    KAUST Repository

    Alanis Lobato, Gregorio

    2014-01-01

    In this work, we propose three novel and powerful approaches for the prediction of interactions in biological networks and conclude that it is possible to mine the topology of these complex system representations and produce reliable

  13. Understanding the Complexities of Communicating Management Decisions on the Subsistence Use of Yukon River Salmon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brooks, J. F.; Trainor, S.

    2017-12-01

    Over 20,000 residents in Alaska and Yukon Territory rely upon the Yukon River to provide them harvests of Pacific salmon each year. Salmon are a highly valued food resource and the practice of salmon fishing along the Yukon is deep rooted in local cultures and traditions. Potential future impacts of climate change on the health of Yukon River salmon stocks could be significant. Collaborative managerial processes which incorporate the viewpoints of subsistence stakeholders will be crucial in enabling communities and managerial institutions to adapt and manage these impacts. However, the massive extent of the Yukon River makes it difficult for communities rich with highly localized knowledge to situate themselves within a drainage-wide context of resource availability, and to fully understand the implications that management decisions may have for their harvest. Differences in salmon availability and abundance between the upper and lower Yukon, commercial vs. subsistence fishery interests, and enforcement of the international Pacific Salmon Treaty further complicate understanding and makes the topic of salmon as a subsistence resource a highly contentious issue. A map which synthesizes the presence and absence of Pacific salmon throughout the entire Yukon River drainage was requested by both subsistence fishers and natural resource managers in Alaska in order to help facilitate productive conversations about salmon management decisions. Interviews with Alaskan stakeholders with managerial, biological, and subsistence harvest backgrounds were carried out and a literature review was conducted in order to understand what such a map should and could accomplish. During the research process, numerous data gaps concerning the distribution of salmon along the Yukon River were discovered, and insights about the complexities involved in translating science when it is situated within a charged political, economic, and cultural context were revealed. Preliminary maps depicting

  14. Life Is Simple—Biologic Complexity Is an Epiphenomenon

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John S. Torday

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Life originated from unicellular organisms by circumventing the Second Law of Thermodynamics using the First Principles of Physiology, namely negentropy, chemiosmosis and homeostatic regulation of calcium and lipids. It is hypothesized that multicellular organisms are merely contrivances or tools, used by unicellular organisms as agents for the acquisition of epigenetic inheritance. The First Principles of Physiology, which initially evolved in unicellular organisms are the exapted constraints that maintain, sustain and perpetuate that process. To ensure fidelity to this mechanism, we must return to the first principles of the unicellular state as the determinants of the primary level of selection pressure during the life cycle. The power of this approach is reflected by examples of its predictive value. This perspective on life is a “game changer”, mechanistically rendering transparent many dogmas, teleologies and tautologies that constrain the current descriptive view of Biology.

  15. Detecting and evaluating communities in complex human and biological networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, Greg; Mahadevan, L.

    2012-02-01

    We develop a simple method for detecting the community structure in a network can by utilizing a measure of closeness between nodes. This approach readily leads to a method of coarse graining the network, which allows the detection of the natural hierarchy (or hierarchies) of community structure without appealing to an unknown resolution parameter. The closeness measure can also be used to evaluate the robustness of an individual node's assignment to its community (rather than evaluating only the quality of the global structure). Each of these methods in community detection and evaluation are illustrated using a variety of real world networks of either biological or sociological importance and illustrate the power and flexibility of the approach.

  16. Using Simple Manipulatives to Improve Student Comprehension of a Complex Biological Process: Protein Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guzman, Karen; Bartlett, John

    2012-01-01

    Biological systems and living processes involve a complex interplay of biochemicals and macromolecular structures that can be challenging for undergraduate students to comprehend and, thus, misconceptions abound. Protein synthesis, or translation, is an example of a biological process for which students often hold many misconceptions. This article…

  17. A CRISPR-based MLST Scheme for Understanding the Population Biology and Epidemiology of Salmonella Enterica

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-26

    N. Shariat, R. E. Timme, J. B. Pettengill, R. Barrangou, E. G. Dudley. Characterization and evolution of Salmonella CRISPR - Cas systems...Barrangou, Edward G. Dudley. Characterization of CRISPR - Cas in Salmonella, 3rd European CRISPR meeting. 14-MAY-14, . : , Margaret K. Kirchner, Nikki... CRISPRs Beyond subtyping approaches, we were motivated to understand the biology of CRISPR - Cas systems in Salmonella. We performed in-depth sequence

  18. Toward A Better Understanding of Perceived Complexity in Music: A Commentary on Eerola (2016

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Hellmuth Margulis

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Eerola (2016 evaluates models of musical complexity based on expectancy violation and information theory. This commentary notes the deep relationship between these two phenomena, and argues for a more active partnership between computational and psychological approaches in understanding perceptions of musical complexity.

  19. Analysis of undergraduate students' conceptual models of a complex biological system across a diverse body of learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirnbeck, Matthew R.

    Biological systems pose a challenge both for learners and teachers because they are complex systems mediated by feedback loops; networks of cause-effect relationships; and non-linear, hierarchical, and emergent properties. Teachers and scientists routinely use models to communicate ideas about complex systems. Model-based pedagogies engage students in model construction as a means of practicing higher-order reasoning skills. One such modeling paradigm describes systems in terms of their structures, behaviors, and functions (SBF). The SBF framework is a simple modeling language that has been used to teach about complex biological systems. Here, we used student-generated SBF models to assess students' causal reasoning in the context of a novel biological problem on an exam. We compared students' performance on the modeling problem, their performance on a set of knowledge/comprehension questions, and their performance on a set of scientific reasoning questions. We found that students who performed well on knowledge and understanding questions also constructed more networked, higher quality models. Previous studies have shown that learners' mental maps increase in complexity with increased expertise. We wanted to investigate if biology students with varying levels of training in biology showed a similar pattern when constructing system models. In a pilot study, we administered the same modeling problem to two additional groups of students: 1) an animal physiology course for students pursuing a major in biology (n=37) and 2) an exercise physiology course for non-majors (n=27). We found that there was no significant difference in model organization across the three student populations, but there was a significant difference in the ability to represent function between the three populations. Between the three groups the non-majors had the lowest function scores, the introductory majors had the middle function scores, and the upper division majors had the highest function

  20. Multilevel functional genomics data integration as a tool for understanding physiology: a network biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidsen, Peter K; Turan, Nil; Egginton, Stuart; Falciani, Francesco

    2016-02-01

    The overall aim of physiological research is to understand how living systems function in an integrative manner. Consequently, the discipline of physiology has since its infancy attempted to link multiple levels of biological organization. Increasingly this has involved mathematical and computational approaches, typically to model a small number of components spanning several levels of biological organization. With the advent of "omics" technologies, which can characterize the molecular state of a cell or tissue (intended as the level of expression and/or activity of its molecular components), the number of molecular components we can quantify has increased exponentially. Paradoxically, the unprecedented amount of experimental data has made it more difficult to derive conceptual models underlying essential mechanisms regulating mammalian physiology. We present an overview of state-of-the-art methods currently used to identifying biological networks underlying genomewide responses. These are based on a data-driven approach that relies on advanced computational methods designed to "learn" biology from observational data. In this review, we illustrate an application of these computational methodologies using a case study integrating an in vivo model representing the transcriptional state of hypoxic skeletal muscle with a clinical study representing muscle wasting in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients. The broader application of these approaches to modeling multiple levels of biological data in the context of modern physiology is discussed. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  1. Decisions, dopamine, and degeneracy in complex biological systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regan CM

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Ciaran M Regan School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Science, UCD Conway Institute, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin, Ireland Abstract: The neurobiological and computational analysis of value-based decision-making rests within the domain of neuroeconomics which has the goal of providing a biological account of human behavior relevant to both natural and social sciences. This review proposes a framework to investigate different aspects of the theoretical and molecular neurobiology of decision-making. In order to learn how to make good decisions, the brain needs to compute a separate value signal that measures the desirability of the outcomes that were generated by its previous decisions. The framework presented here combines aspects of current ideas relating to information processing by the hippocampal formation and how these relate to the phasic midbrain dopaminergic firing that occurs in response to the spatial and motivational aspects of rewarding events in the environment. The activities of hippocampal ensembles are considered to reflect a continuous updating process for attended experiences, defining both regular and irregular stimuli, environments, and actions, that are rapidly encoded as schemas into pre-existing knowledge bases. Keywords: hippocampus, schemas, synapse assemblies, cell assemblies, synapse plasticity

  2. Approaching complexity by stochastic methods: From biological systems to turbulence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Friedrich, Rudolf [Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of Muenster, D-48149 Muenster (Germany); Peinke, Joachim [Institute of Physics, Carl von Ossietzky University, D-26111 Oldenburg (Germany); Sahimi, Muhammad [Mork Family Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089-1211 (United States); Reza Rahimi Tabar, M., E-mail: mohammed.r.rahimi.tabar@uni-oldenburg.de [Department of Physics, Sharif University of Technology, Tehran 11155-9161 (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Institute of Physics, Carl von Ossietzky University, D-26111 Oldenburg (Germany); Fachbereich Physik, Universitaet Osnabrueck, Barbarastrasse 7, 49076 Osnabrueck (Germany)

    2011-09-15

    This review addresses a central question in the field of complex systems: given a fluctuating (in time or space), sequentially measured set of experimental data, how should one analyze the data, assess their underlying trends, and discover the characteristics of the fluctuations that generate the experimental traces? In recent years, significant progress has been made in addressing this question for a class of stochastic processes that can be modeled by Langevin equations, including additive as well as multiplicative fluctuations or noise. Important results have emerged from the analysis of temporal data for such diverse fields as neuroscience, cardiology, finance, economy, surface science, turbulence, seismic time series and epileptic brain dynamics, to name but a few. Furthermore, it has been recognized that a similar approach can be applied to the data that depend on a length scale, such as velocity increments in fully developed turbulent flow, or height increments that characterize rough surfaces. A basic ingredient of the approach to the analysis of fluctuating data is the presence of a Markovian property, which can be detected in real systems above a certain time or length scale. This scale is referred to as the Markov-Einstein (ME) scale, and has turned out to be a useful characteristic of complex systems. We provide a review of the operational methods that have been developed for analyzing stochastic data in time and scale. We address in detail the following issues: (i) reconstruction of stochastic evolution equations from data in terms of the Langevin equations or the corresponding Fokker-Planck equations and (ii) intermittency, cascades, and multiscale correlation functions.

  3. Approaching complexity by stochastic methods: From biological systems to turbulence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Friedrich, Rudolf; Peinke, Joachim; Sahimi, Muhammad; Reza Rahimi Tabar, M.

    2011-01-01

    This review addresses a central question in the field of complex systems: given a fluctuating (in time or space), sequentially measured set of experimental data, how should one analyze the data, assess their underlying trends, and discover the characteristics of the fluctuations that generate the experimental traces? In recent years, significant progress has been made in addressing this question for a class of stochastic processes that can be modeled by Langevin equations, including additive as well as multiplicative fluctuations or noise. Important results have emerged from the analysis of temporal data for such diverse fields as neuroscience, cardiology, finance, economy, surface science, turbulence, seismic time series and epileptic brain dynamics, to name but a few. Furthermore, it has been recognized that a similar approach can be applied to the data that depend on a length scale, such as velocity increments in fully developed turbulent flow, or height increments that characterize rough surfaces. A basic ingredient of the approach to the analysis of fluctuating data is the presence of a Markovian property, which can be detected in real systems above a certain time or length scale. This scale is referred to as the Markov-Einstein (ME) scale, and has turned out to be a useful characteristic of complex systems. We provide a review of the operational methods that have been developed for analyzing stochastic data in time and scale. We address in detail the following issues: (i) reconstruction of stochastic evolution equations from data in terms of the Langevin equations or the corresponding Fokker-Planck equations and (ii) intermittency, cascades, and multiscale correlation functions.

  4. Understanding large multiprotein complexes: applying a multiple allosteric networks model to explain the function of the Mediator transcription complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Brian A

    2010-01-15

    The regulation of transcription and of many other cellular processes involves large multi-subunit protein complexes. In the context of transcription, it is known that these complexes serve as regulatory platforms that connect activator DNA-binding proteins to a target promoter. However, there is still a lack of understanding regarding the function of these complexes. Why do multi-subunit complexes exist? What is the molecular basis of the function of their constituent subunits, and how are these subunits organized within a complex? What is the reason for physical connections between certain subunits and not others? In this article, I address these issues through a model of network allostery and its application to the eukaryotic RNA polymerase II Mediator transcription complex. The multiple allosteric networks model (MANM) suggests that protein complexes such as Mediator exist not only as physical but also as functional networks of interconnected proteins through which information is transferred from subunit to subunit by the propagation of an allosteric state known as conformational spread. Additionally, there are multiple distinct sub-networks within the Mediator complex that can be defined by their connections to different subunits; these sub-networks have discrete functions that are activated when specific subunits interact with other activator proteins.

  5. Biological Principles and Threshold Concepts for Understanding Natural Selection. Implications for Developing Visualizations as a Pedagogic Tool

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tibell, Lena A. E.; Harms, Ute

    2017-11-01

    Modern evolutionary theory is both a central theory and an integrative framework of the life sciences. This is reflected in the common references to evolution in modern science education curricula and contexts. In fact, evolution is a core idea that is supposed to support biology learning by facilitating the organization of relevant knowledge. In addition, evolution can function as a pivotal link between concepts and highlight similarities in the complexity of biological concepts. However, empirical studies in many countries have for decades identified deficiencies in students' scientific understanding of evolution mainly focusing on natural selection. Clearly, there are major obstacles to learning natural selection, and we argue that to overcome them, it is essential to address explicitly the general abstract concepts that underlie the biological processes, e.g., randomness or probability. Hence, we propose a two-dimensional framework for analyzing and structuring teaching of natural selection. The first—purely biological—dimension embraces the three main principles variation, heredity, and selection structured in nine key concepts that form the core idea of natural selection. The second dimension encompasses four so-called thresholds, i.e., general abstract and/or non-perceptual concepts: randomness, probability, spatial scales, and temporal scales. We claim that both of these dimensions must be continuously considered, in tandem, when teaching evolution in order to allow development of a meaningful understanding of the process. Further, we suggest that making the thresholds tangible with the aid of appropriate kinds of visualizations will facilitate grasping of the threshold concepts, and thus, help learners to overcome the difficulties in understanding the central theory of life.

  6. Measuring spatial patterns in floodplains: A step towards understanding the complexity of floodplain ecosystems: Chapter 6

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scown, Murray W.; Thoms, Martin C.; DeJager, Nathan R.; Gilvear, David J.; Greenwood, Malcolm T.; Thoms, Martin C.; Wood, Paul J.

    2016-01-01

    Floodplains can be viewed as complex adaptive systems (Levin, 1998) because they are comprised of many different biophysical components, such as morphological features, soil groups and vegetation communities as well as being sites of key biogeochemical processing (Stanford et al., 2005). Interactions and feedbacks among the biophysical components often result in additional phenomena occuring over a range of scales, often in the absence of any controlling factors (sensu Hallet, 1990). This emergence of new biophysical features and rates of processing can lead to alternative stable states which feed back into floodplain adaptive cycles (cf. Hughes, 1997; Stanford et al., 2005). Interactions between different biophysical components, feedbacks, self emergence and scale are all key properties of complex adaptive systems (Levin, 1998; Phillips, 2003; Murray et al., 2014) and therefore will influence the manner in which we study and view spatial patterns. Measuring the spatial patterns of floodplain biophysical components is a prerequisite to examining and understanding these ecosystems as complex adaptive systems. Elucidating relationships between pattern and process, which are intrinsically linked within floodplains (Ward et al., 2002), is dependent upon an understanding of spatial pattern. This knowledge can help river scientists determine the major drivers, controllers and responses of floodplain structure and function, as well as the consequences of altering those drivers and controllers (Hughes and Cass, 1997; Whited et al., 2007). Interactions and feedbacks between physical, chemical and biological components of floodplain ecosystems create and maintain a structurally diverse and dynamic template (Stanford et al., 2005). This template influences subsequent interactions between components that consequently affect system trajectories within floodplains (sensu Bak et al., 1988). Constructing and evaluating models used to predict floodplain ecosystem responses to

  7. Functionalized diamond nanopowder for phosphopeptides enrichment from complex biological fluids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hussain, Dilshad [Division of Analytical Chemistry, Institute of Chemical Sciences, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 60800 (Pakistan); Najam-ul-Haq, Muhammad, E-mail: najamulhaq@bzu.edu.pk [Division of Analytical Chemistry, Institute of Chemical Sciences, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 60800 (Pakistan); Institute of Analytical Chemistry and Radiochemistry, Leopold-Franzens University, Innrain 80-82, A-6020 Innsbruck (Austria); Jabeen, Fahmida; Ashiq, Muhammad N.; Athar, Muhammad [Division of Analytical Chemistry, Institute of Chemical Sciences, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 60800 (Pakistan); Rainer, Matthias; Huck, Christian W.; Bonn, Guenther K. [Institute of Analytical Chemistry and Radiochemistry, Leopold-Franzens University, Innrain 80-82, A-6020 Innsbruck (Austria)

    2013-05-02

    Graphical abstract: -- Highlights: •Derivatization of diamond nanopowder as IMAC and RP. •Characterization with SEM, EDX and FT-IR. •Phosphopeptide enrichment from standard as well as real samples. •Desalting and human serum profiling with reproducible results. •MALDI-MS analysis with database identification. -- Abstract: Diamond is known for its high affinity and biocompatibility towards biomolecules and is used exclusively in separation sciences and life science research. In present study, diamond nanopowder is derivatized as Immobilized Metal Ion Affinity Chromatographic (IMAC) material for the phosphopeptides enrichment and as Reversed Phase (C-18) media for the desalting of complex mixtures and human serum profiling through MALDI-TOF-MS. Functionalized diamond nanopowder is characterized by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy. Diamond-IMAC is applied to the standard protein (β-casein), spiked human serum, egg yolk and non-fat milk for the phosphopeptides enrichment. Results show the selectivity of synthesized IMAC-diamond immobilized with Fe{sup 3+} and La{sup 3+} ions. To comprehend the elaborated use, diamond-IMAC is also applied to the serum samples from gall bladder carcinoma for the potential biomarkers. Database search is carried out by the Mascot program ( (www.matrixscience.com)) for the assignment of phosphorylation sites. Diamond nanopowder is thus a separation media with multifunctional use and can be applied to cancer protein profiling for the diagnosis and biomarker identification.

  8. [Physico-chemical features of dinitrosyl iron complexes with natural thiol-containing ligands underlying biological activities of these complexes].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanin, A F; Borodulin, R R; Kubrina, L N; Mikoian, V D; Burbaev, D Sh

    2013-01-01

    Current notions and new experimental data of the authors on physico-chemical features of dinitrosyl iron complexes with natural thiol-containing ligands (glutathione or cysteine), underlying the ability of the complexes to act as NO molecule and nitrosonium ion donors, are considered. This ability determines various biological activities of dinitrosyl iron complexes--inducing long-lasting vasodilation and thereby long-lasting hypotension in human and animals, inhibiting pellet aggregation, increasing red blood cell elasticity, thereby stimulating microcirculation, and reducing necrotic zone in animals with myocardial infarction. Moreover, dinitrosyl iron complexes are capable of accelerating skin wound healing, improving the function of penile cavernous tissue, blocking apoptosis development in cell cultures. When decomposed dinitrosyl iron complexes can exert cytotoxic effect that can be used for curing infectious and carcinogenic pathologies.

  9. Drosophila melanogaster--the model organism of choice for the complex biology of multi-cellular organisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckingham, Kathleen M.; Armstrong, J. Douglas; Texada, Michael J.; Munjaal, Ravi; Baker, Dean A.

    2005-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster has been intensely studied for almost 100 years. The sophisticated array of genetic and molecular tools that have evolved for analysis of gene function in this organism are unique. Further, Drosophila is a complex multi-cellular organism in which many aspects of development and behavior parallel those in human beings. These combined advantages have permitted research in Drosophila to make seminal contributions to the understanding of fundamental biological processes and ensure that Drosophila will continue to provide unique insights in the genomic era. An overview of the genetic methodologies available in Drosophila is given here, together with examples of outstanding recent contributions of Drosophila to our understanding of cell and organismal biology. The growing contribution of Drosophila to our knowledge of gravity-related responses is addressed.

  10. Preparation and Characterization Challenges to Understanding Environmental and Biological Impacts of Ceria Nanoparticles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karakoti, Ajay S.; Munusamy, Prabhakaran; Hostetler, Kasey E.; Kodali, Vamsi K.; Kuchibhatla, Satyanarayana V N T; Orr, Galya; Pounds, Joel G.; Teeguarden, Justin G.; Thrall, Brian D.; Baer, Donald R.

    2012-08-01

    It has been increasingly recognized that understanding and predicting the behaviors of nanoparticles is often limited by the degree to which the particles can be reliably produced and are adequately characterized. Examining data from the literature for ceria nanoparticles suggests that thermal history is one factor that has a strong influence on biological impact. Thermal processing may alter many physicochemical properties of the particles including density, crystal structure and the presence of surface contamination, but these may not be sufficiently recorded or reported to determine the ultimate source of an observed impact. A second example shows the types of difficulties that can be encountered in efforts to apply a well-studied synthesis route to producing well defined particles for biological studies. These examples and others highlight the importance of characterizing particles thoroughly and recording details of particle processing and history that are often not recorded and/or reported.

  11. Understanding the Reading Attributes and Their Cognitive Relationships on a High-Stakes Biology Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlusyk, Kevin James

    Test items used to assess learners' knowledge on high-stakes science examinations contain contextualized questions that unintentionally assess reading skill along with conceptual knowledge. Therefore, students who are not proficient readers are unable to comprehend the text within the test item to demonstrate effectively their level of science knowledge. The purpose of this quantitative study was to understand what reading attributes were required to successfully answer the Biology 30 Diploma Exam. Furthermore, the research sought to understand the cognitive relationships among the reading attributes through quantitative analysis structured by the Attribute Hierarchy Model (AHM). The research consisted of two phases: (1) Cognitive development, where the cognitive attributes of the Biology 30 Exam were specified and hierarchy structures were developed; and (2) Psychometric analysis, that statistically tested the attribute hierarchy using the Hierarchy Consistency Index (HCI), and calculate attribute probabilities. Phase one of the research used January 2011, Biology 30 Diploma Exam, while phase two accessed archival data for the 9985 examinees who took the assessment on January 24th, 2011. Phase one identified ten specific reading attributes, of which five were identified as unique subsets of vocabulary, two were identified as reading visual representations, and three corresponded to general reading skills. Four hierarchical cognitive model were proposed then analyzed using the HCI as a mechanism to explain the relationship among the attributes. Model A had the highest HCI value (0.337), indicating an overall poor data fit, yet for the top achieving examinees the model had an excellent model fit with an HCI value of 0.888, and for examinees that scored over 60% there was a moderate model fit (HCI = 0.592). Linear regressions of the attribute probability estimates suggest that there is a cognitive relationship among six of the ten reading attributes (R2 = 0.958 and 0

  12. Patient Understanding of the Risks and Benefits of Biologic Therapies in Inflammatory Bowel Disease: Insights from a Large-scale Analysis of Social Media Platforms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez, Bibiana; Dailey, Francis; Almario, Christopher V; Keller, Michelle S; Desai, Mansee; Dupuy, Taylor; Mosadeghi, Sasan; Whitman, Cynthia; Lasch, Karen; Ursos, Lyann; Spiegel, Brennan M R

    2017-07-01

    Few studies have examined inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients' knowledge and understanding of biologic therapies outside traditional surveys. Here, we used social media data to examine IBD patients' understanding of the risks and benefits associated with biologic therapies and how this affects decision-making. We collected posts from Twitter and e-forum discussions from >3000 social media sites posted between June 27, 2012 and June 27, 2015. Guided by natural language processing, we identified posts with specific IBD keywords that discussed the risks and/or benefits of biologics. We then manually coded the resulting posts and performed qualitative analysis using ATLAS.ti software. A hierarchical coding structure was developed based on the keyword list and relevant themes were identified through manual coding. We examined 1598 IBD-related posts, of which 452 (28.3%) centered on the risks and/or benefits of biologics. There were 5 main themes: negative experiences and concerns with biologics (n = 247; 54.6%), decision-making surrounding biologic use (n = 169; 37.4%), positive experiences with biologics (n = 168; 37.2%), information seeking from peers (n = 125; 27.7%), and cost (n = 38; 8.4%). Posts describing negative experiences primarily commented on side effects from biologics, concerns about potential side effects and increased cancer risk, and pregnancy safety concerns. Posts on decision-making focused on nonbiologic treatment options, hesitation to initiate biologics, and concerns about changing or discontinuing regimens. Social media reveals a wide range of themes governing patients' experience and choice with IBD biologics. The complexity of navigating their risk-benefit profiles suggests merit in creating online tailored decision tools to support IBD patients' decision-making with biologic therapies.

  13. Biological Complexities in Radiation Carcinogenesis and Cancer Radiotherapy: Impact of New Biological Paradigms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hossein Mozdarani

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Although radiation carcinogenesis has been shown both experimentally and epidemiologically, the use of ionizing radiation is also one of the major modalities in cancer treatment. Various known cellular and molecular events are involved in carcinogenesis. Apart from the known phenomena, there could be implications for carcinogenesis and cancer prevention due to other biological processes such as the bystander effect, the abscopal effect, intrinsic radiosensitivity and radioadaptation. Bystander effects have consequences for mutation initiated cancer paradigms of radiation carcinogenesis, which provide the mechanistic justification for low-dose risk estimates. The abscopal effect is potentially important for tumor control and is mediated through cytokines and/or the immune system (mainly cell-mediated immunity. It results from loss of growth and stimulatory and/or immunosuppressive factors from the tumor. Intrinsic radiosensitivity is a feature of some cancer prone chromosomal breakage syndromes such as ataxia telangectiasia. Radiosensitivity is manifested as higher chromosomal aberrations and DNA repair impairment is now known as a good biomarker for breast cancer screening and prediction of prognosis. However, it is not yet known whether this effect is good or bad for those receiving radiation or radiomimetic agents for treatment. Radiation hormesis is another major concern for carcinogenesis. This process which protects cells from higher doses of radiation or radio mimic chemicals, may lead to the escape of cells from mitotic death or apoptosis and put cells with a lower amount of damage into the process of cancer induction. Therefore, any of these biological phenomena could have impact on another process giving rise to genome instability of cells which are not in the field of radiation but still receiving a lower amount of radiation. For prevention of radiation induced carcinogenesis or risk assessment as well as for successful radiation

  14. Thai in-service teacher understanding of nature of science in biology teaching: Case of Mali

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aiemsum-ang, Napapan; Yuenyong, Chokchai

    2018-01-01

    This paper aimed to investigate the existing ideas of nature of science (NOS) teaching in Thailand biology classroom. The study reported the existing ideas of nature of science (NOS) teaching of one biology teacher Mrs. Mali who had been teaching for 6 years at in a school in Khon Kaen city. Methodology regarded interpretive paradigm. Tools of interpretation included 2 months of classroom observation, interviewing, and questionnaire of NOS. The findings revealed Mali held good understanding of the nature of science in the aspect of the use of evidence, the aspect of knowledge inquiry through different observation and deduction, the aspect of creativity and imagination influencing science knowledge inquiry, and the aspect of changeable scientific knowledge. Her biology teaching indicated that she used both the deficient nature of science approach and the implicit nature of science approach. The implicit nature of science approach was applied mostly in 7 periods and only 2 periods were arranged using the deficient nature of science approach. The paper has implication for professional development and pre-service program on NOS teaching in Thailand.

  15. Screening the efficient biological prospects of triazole allied mixed ligand metal complexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utthra, Ponnukalai Ponya; Kumaravel, Ganesan; Raman, Natarajan

    2017-12-01

    Triazole appended mixed ligand complexes (1-8) of the general formula [ML (bpy/phen)2]Cl2, where M = Cu(II), Co(II), Ni(II) and Zn(II), L = triazole appended Schiff base (E)sbnd N-(4-nitrobenzylidene)-1H-1,2,4-triazol-3-amine and bpy/phen = 2,2‧-bipyridine/1,10-phenanthroline, have been synthesized. The design and synthesis of this elaborate ligand has been performed with the aim of increasing stability and conjugation of 1,2,4 triazole, whose Schiff base derivatives are known as biologically active compounds thereby exploring their DNA binding affinity and other biological applications. The compounds have been comprehensively characterized by elemental analysis, spectroscopic methods (IR, UV-Vis, EPR, 1H and 13C NMR spectroscopy), ESI mass spectrometry and magnetic susceptibility measurements. The complexes were found to exhibit octahedral geometry. The complexes 1-8 were subjected to DNA binding techniques evaluated using UV-Vis absorption, CV, CD, Fluorescence spectroscopy and hydrodynamic measurements. Complex 5 showed a Kb value of 3.9 × 105 M-1. The DNA damaging efficacy for the complexes was observed to be high compared to the ligand. The antimicrobial screening of the compounds against bacterial and fungal strains indicates that the complexes possess excellent antimicrobial activity than the ligand. The overall biological activity of the complexes with phen as a co-ligand possessed superior potential than the ligand.

  16. Modeling systems-level dynamics: Understanding without mechanistic explanation in integrative systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLeod, Miles; Nersessian, Nancy J

    2015-02-01

    In this paper we draw upon rich ethnographic data of two systems biology labs to explore the roles of explanation and understanding in large-scale systems modeling. We illustrate practices that depart from the goal of dynamic mechanistic explanation for the sake of more limited modeling goals. These processes use abstract mathematical formulations of bio-molecular interactions and data fitting techniques which we call top-down abstraction to trade away accurate mechanistic accounts of large-scale systems for specific information about aspects of those systems. We characterize these practices as pragmatic responses to the constraints many modelers of large-scale systems face, which in turn generate more limited pragmatic non-mechanistic forms of understanding of systems. These forms aim at knowledge of how to predict system responses in order to manipulate and control some aspects of them. We propose that this analysis of understanding provides a way to interpret what many systems biologists are aiming for in practice when they talk about the objective of a "systems-level understanding." Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Understanding the physiology of complex congenital heart disease using cardiac magnetic resonance imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kappanayil, Mahesh; Kannan, Rajesh; Kumar, Raman Krishna

    2011-01-01

    Complex congenital heart diseases are often associated with complex alterations in hemodynamics. Understanding these key hemodynamic changes is critical to making management decisions including surgery and postoperative management. Existing tools for imaging and hemodynamic assessment like echocardiography, computed tomography and cardiac catheterization have inherent limitations. Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is emerging as a powerful bouquet of tools that allow not only excellent imaging, but also a unique insight into hemodynamics. This article introduces the reader to cardiac MRI and its utility through the clinical example of a child with a complex congenital cyanotic heart disease

  18. Perceptual Influence of Ugandan Biology Students' Understanding of HIV/AIDS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutonyi, Harriet; Nashon, Samson; Nielsen, Wendy S.

    2010-08-01

    In Uganda, curbing the spread of HIV/AIDS has largely depended on public and private media messages about the disease. Media campaigns based on Uganda’s cultural norms of communication are metaphorical, analogical and simile-like. The topic of HIV/AIDS has been introduced into the Senior Three (Grade 11) biology curriculum in Uganda. To what extent do students’ pre-conceptions of the disease, based on these media messages influence students’ development of conceptual understanding of the disease, its transmission and prevention? Of significant importance is the impact the conceptions students have developed from the indirect media messages on classroom instruction on HIV/AIDS. The study is based in a theoretical framework of conceptual change in science learning. An interpretive case study to determine the impact of Ugandan students’ conceptions or perceptions on classroom instruction about HIV/AIDS, involving 160 students aged 15-17, was conducted in four different Ugandan high schools: girls boarding, boys boarding, mixed boarding, and mixed day. Using questionnaires, focus group discussions, recorded biology lessons and informal interviews, students’ preconceptions of HIV/AIDS and how these impact lessons on HIV/AIDS were discerned. These preconceptions fall into four main categories: religious, political, conspiracy and traditional African worldviews. Results of data analysis suggest that students’ prior knowledge is persistent even after biology instructions. This has implications for current teaching approaches, which are mostly teacher-centred in Ugandan schools. A rethinking of the curriculum with the intent of offering science education programs that promote understanding of the science of HIV/AIDS as opposed to what is happening now—insensitivity to misconceptions about the disease—is needed.

  19. Proteomics-Based Analysis of Protein Complexes in Pluripotent Stem Cells and Cancer Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudhir, Putty-Reddy; Chen, Chung-Hsuan

    2016-03-22

    A protein complex consists of two or more proteins that are linked together through protein-protein interactions. The proteins show stable/transient and direct/indirect interactions within the protein complex or between the protein complexes. Protein complexes are involved in regulation of most of the cellular processes and molecular functions. The delineation of protein complexes is important to expand our knowledge on proteins functional roles in physiological and pathological conditions. The genetic yeast-2-hybrid method has been extensively used to characterize protein-protein interactions. Alternatively, a biochemical-based affinity purification coupled with mass spectrometry (AP-MS) approach has been widely used to characterize the protein complexes. In the AP-MS method, a protein complex of a target protein of interest is purified using a specific antibody or an affinity tag (e.g., DYKDDDDK peptide (FLAG) and polyhistidine (His)) and is subsequently analyzed by means of MS. Tandem affinity purification, a two-step purification system, coupled with MS has been widely used mainly to reduce the contaminants. We review here a general principle for AP-MS-based characterization of protein complexes and we explore several protein complexes identified in pluripotent stem cell biology and cancer biology as examples.

  20. Chinese Herbal Medicine Meets Biological Networks of Complex Diseases: A Computational Perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Shuo Gu; Jianfeng Pei

    2017-01-01

    With the rapid development of cheminformatics, computational biology, and systems biology, great progress has been made recently in the computational research of Chinese herbal medicine with in-depth understanding towards pharmacognosy. This paper summarized these studies in the aspects of computational methods, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) compound databases, and TCM network pharmacology. Furthermore, we chose arachidonic acid metabolic network as a case study to demonstrate the regula...

  1. Physicochemical and biological study of a renal scintigraphy agent: the DMSA - 99mTc complex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Laroche, Dominique

    1979-01-01

    This research thesis deals with the study of the dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) marked with 99m Tc, a recently developed scintigraphy agent used for the kidney isotopic exploration. The author notably studied the relationships between the physicochemical properties of solutions of dimercaptosuccinic acid marked with 99m Tc and the biological distribution of 99m Tc in order to reach a better understanding of the biological mechanism which results in technetium fixation to the kidney

  2. Features of Knowledge Building in Biology: Understanding Undergraduate Students' Ideas about Molecular Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn; Wince, Tyler; Meddleton, Shanice; Bolger, Molly S

    2016-01-01

    Research has suggested that teaching and learning in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) is difficult. We used a new lens to understand undergraduate reasoning about molecular mechanisms: the knowledge-integration approach to conceptual change. Knowledge integration is the dynamic process by which learners acquire new ideas, develop connections between ideas, and reorganize and restructure prior knowledge. Semistructured, clinical think-aloud interviews were conducted with introductory and upper-division MCB students. Interviews included a written conceptual assessment, a concept-mapping activity, and an opportunity to explain the biomechanisms of DNA replication, transcription, and translation. Student reasoning patterns were explored through mixed-method analyses. Results suggested that students must sort mechanistic entities into appropriate mental categories that reflect the nature of MCB mechanisms and that conflation between these categories is common. We also showed how connections between molecular mechanisms and their biological roles are part of building an integrated knowledge network as students develop expertise. We observed differences in the nature of connections between ideas related to different forms of reasoning. Finally, we provide a tentative model for MCB knowledge integration and suggest its implications for undergraduate learning. © 2016 K. Southard et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  3. Understanding Biological Rates and their Temperature Dependence, from Enzymes to Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prentice, E.; Arcus, V. L.

    2017-12-01

    Temperature responses over various scales in biological systems follow a similar pattern; negative curvature results in an optimum temperature (Topt) for activity/growth/turnover, with decreases in rates on either side of Topt. Previously this downturn in rates at high temperatures has been attributed to enzyme denaturation, where a failing of the basic driving units of metabolism was used to describe curvature at the enzyme and organism level. However, recent developments in our understanding of the factors governing enzyme rates at different temperatures have guided a new understanding of the responses of biological systems. Enzymes catalyse reactions by driving the substrate through a high energy species, which is tightly bound to the enzyme. Macromolecular rate theory (MMRT) has recently been developed to account for the changes in the system brought about by this tight binding, specifically the change in the physical parameter heat capacity (ΔCǂp), and the effect this has on the temperature dependence of enzyme reactions. A negative ΔCǂp imparts the signature negative curvature to rates in the absence of denaturation, and finds that Topt, ΔCǂp and curvature are all correlated, placing constraints on biological systems. The simplest of cells comprise thousands of enzymatically catalysed reactions, functioning in series and in parallel in metabolic pathways to determine the overall growth rate of an organism. Intuitively, the temperature effects of enzymes play a role in determining the overall temperature dependence of an organism, in tandem with cellular level regulatory responses. However, the effect of individual Topt values and curvature on overall pathway behaviour is less apparent. Here, this is investigated in the context of MMRT through the in vitro characterisation of a six-step metabolic pathway to understand the steps in isolation and functioning in series. Pathway behaviour is found to be approximately an average of the properties of the

  4. MURI: An Integrated Multi-Scale Approach for Understanding Ion Transport in Complex Heterogeneous Organic Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-09-30

    Thomas A. Witten,f Matthew W. Liberatore,a and Andrew M. Herring,a,* a Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering and bDepartment of Chemistry ...2) To fundamentally understand, with combined experimental and computational approaches, the interplay of chemistry , processing, and morphology on...Society, The International Society of Electrochemistry and The American Institute of Chemical Engineers to give oral and poster presentations. In

  5. On the analysis of complex biological supply chains: From Process Systems Engineering to Quantitative Systems Pharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Rohit T; Scherholz, Megerle L; Hartmanshenn, Clara; Bae, Seul-A; Androulakis, Ioannis P

    2017-12-05

    The use of models in biology has become particularly relevant as it enables investigators to develop a mechanistic framework for understanding the operating principles of living systems as well as in quantitatively predicting their response to both pathological perturbations and pharmacological interventions. This application has resulted in a synergistic convergence of systems biology and pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic modeling techniques that has led to the emergence of quantitative systems pharmacology (QSP). In this review, we discuss how the foundational principles of chemical process systems engineering inform the progressive development of more physiologically-based systems biology models.

  6. Understanding complexity in managing agro-pastoral dams ecosystem services in Northern Benin

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kpera, G.N.

    2015-01-01

    Key words: conflict, water quality, crocodile, fish diversity, vegetable, watershed management, institutional changes, innovation system.

    Understanding complexity in managing agro-pastoral dams ecosystem services in Northern Benin

    Gnanki

  7. Hypothesis: the chaos and complexity theory may help our understanding of fibromyalgia and similar maladies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Lavin, Manuel; Infante, Oscar; Lerma, Claudia

    2008-02-01

    Modern clinicians are often frustrated by their inability to understand fibromyalgia and similar maladies since these illnesses cannot be explained by the prevailing linear-reductionist medical paradigm. This article proposes that new concepts derived from the Complexity Theory may help understand the pathogenesis of fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, and Gulf War syndrome. This hypothesis is based on the recent recognition of chaos fractals and complex systems in human physiology. These nonlinear dynamics concepts offer a different perspective to the notion of homeostasis and disease. They propose that the essence of disease is dysfunction and not structural damage. Studies using novel nonlinear instruments have shown that fibromyalgia and similar maladies may be caused by the degraded performance of our main complex adaptive system. This dysfunction explains the multifaceted manifestations of these entities. To understand and alleviate the suffering associated with these complex illnesses, a paradigm shift from reductionism to holism based on the Complexity Theory is suggested. This shift perceives health as resilient adaptation and some chronic illnesses as rigid dysfunction.

  8. The effects of academic literacy instruction on engagement and conceptual understanding of biology of ninth-grade students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Susan C.

    Academic language, discourse, vocabulary, motivation, and comprehension of complex texts and concepts are keys to learning subject-area content. The need for a disciplinary literacy approach in high school classrooms accelerates as students become increasing disengaged in school and as content complexity increases. In the present quasi-experimental mixed-method study, a ninth-grade biology unit was designed with an emphasis on promoting academic literacy skills, discourse, meaningful constructivist learning, interest development, and positive learning experiences in order to learn science content. Quantitative and qualitative analyses on a variety of measures completed by 222 students in two high schools revealed that those who received academic literacy instruction in science class performed at significantly higher levels of conceptual understanding of biology content, academic language and vocabulary use, reasoned thought, engagement, and quality of learning experience than control-group students receiving traditionally-organized instruction. Academic literacy was embedded into biology instruction to engage students in meaning-making discourses of science to promote learning. Academic literacy activities were organized according the phases of interest development to trigger and sustain interest and goal-oriented engagement throughout the unit. Specific methods included the Generative Vocabulary Matrix (GVM), scenario-based writing, and involvement in a variety of strategically-placed discourse activities to sustain or "boost" engagement for learning. Traditional instruction for the control group included teacher lecture, whole-group discussion, a conceptual organizer, and textbook reading. Theoretical foundations include flow theory, sociocultural learning theory, and interest theory. Qualitative data were obtained from field notes and participants' journals. Quantitative survey data were collected and analyzed using the Experience Sampling Method (ESM) to

  9. A study of ruthenium complexes of some biologically relevant a-N ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Journal of Chemical Sciences; Volume 112; Issue 3. A study of ruthenium complexes of some biologically relevant ∙ -N-heterocyclic ... Author Affiliations. P Sengupta1 S Ghosh1. Department of Inorganic Chemistry, Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science, Jadavpur, Calcutta 700 032, India ...

  10. Metal-containing Complexes of Lactams, Imidazoles, and Benzimidazoles and Their Biological Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kukalenko, S. S.; Bovykin, B. A.; Shestakova, S. I.; Omel'chenko, A. M.

    1985-07-01

    The results of the latest investigations of the problem of the synthesis of metal-containing complexes of lactams, imidazoles, and benzimidazoles, their structure, and their stability in solutions are surveyed. Some data on their biological activity (pesticide and pharmacological) and the mechanism of their physiological action are presented. The bibliography includes 190 references.

  11. "Toward High School Biology": Helping Middle School Students Understand Chemical Reactions and Conservation of Mass in Nonliving and Living Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann-Abell, Cari F.; Koppal, Mary; Roseman, Jo Ellen

    2016-01-01

    Modern biology has become increasingly molecular in nature, requiring students to understand basic chemical concepts. Studies show, however, that many students fail to grasp ideas about atom rearrangement and conservation during chemical reactions or the application of these ideas to biological systems. To help provide students with a better…

  12. The role of mathematical models in understanding pattern formation in developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umulis, David M; Othmer, Hans G

    2015-05-01

    In a Wall Street Journal article published on April 5, 2013, E. O. Wilson attempted to make the case that biologists do not really need to learn any mathematics-whenever they run into difficulty with numerical issues, they can find a technician (aka mathematician) to help them out of their difficulty. He formalizes this in Wilsons Principle No. 1: "It is far easier for scientists to acquire needed collaboration from mathematicians and statisticians than it is for mathematicians and statisticians to find scientists able to make use of their equations." This reflects a complete misunderstanding of the role of mathematics in all sciences throughout history. To Wilson, mathematics is mere number crunching, but as Galileo said long ago, "The laws of Nature are written in the language of mathematics[Formula: see text] the symbols are triangles, circles and other geometrical figures, without whose help it is impossible to comprehend a single word." Mathematics has moved beyond the geometry-based model of Galileo's time, and in a rebuttal to Wilson, E. Frenkel has pointed out the role of mathematics in synthesizing the general principles in science (Both point and counter-point are available in Wilson and Frenkel in Notices Am Math Soc 60(7):837-838, 2013). We will take this a step further and show how mathematics has been used to make new and experimentally verified discoveries in developmental biology and how mathematics is essential for understanding a problem that has puzzled experimentalists for decades-that of how organisms can scale in size. Mathematical analysis alone cannot "solve" these problems since the validation lies at the molecular level, but conversely, a growing number of questions in biology cannot be solved without mathematical analysis and modeling. Herein, we discuss a few examples of the productive intercourse between mathematics and biology.

  13. Beyond disease susceptibility-Leveraging genome-wide association studies for new insights into complex disease biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, J C

    2017-12-01

    Genetic studies in complex diseases have been highly successful, but have also been largely one-dimensional: predominantly focusing on the genetic contribution to disease susceptibility. While this is undoubtedly important-indeed it is a pre-requisite for understanding the mechanisms underlying disease development-there are many other important aspects of disease biology that have received comparatively little attention. In this review, I will discuss how existing genetic data can be leveraged to provide new insights into other aspects of disease biology, why such insights could change the way we think about complex disease, and how this could provide opportunities for better therapies and/or facilitate personalised medicine. To do this, I will use the example of Crohn's disease-a chronic form of inflammatory bowel disease that has been one of the main success stories in complex disease genetics. Indeed, thanks to genetic studies, we now have a much more detailed understanding of the processes involved in Crohn's disease development, but still know relatively little about what determines the subsequent disease course (prognosis) and why this differs so considerably between individuals. I will discuss how we came to realise that genetic variation plays an important role in determining disease prognosis and how this has changed the way we think about Crohn's disease genetics. This will illustrate how phenotypic data can be used to leverage new insights from genetic data and will provide a broadly applicable framework that could yield new insights into the biology of multiple diseases. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Features of Knowledge Building in Biology: Understanding Undergraduate Students’ Ideas about Molecular Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn; Wince, Tyler; Meddleton, Shanice; Bolger, Molly S.

    2016-01-01

    Research has suggested that teaching and learning in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) is difficult. We used a new lens to understand undergraduate reasoning about molecular mechanisms: the knowledge-integration approach to conceptual change. Knowledge integration is the dynamic process by which learners acquire new ideas, develop connections between ideas, and reorganize and restructure prior knowledge. Semistructured, clinical think-aloud interviews were conducted with introductory and upper-division MCB students. Interviews included a written conceptual assessment, a concept-mapping activity, and an opportunity to explain the biomechanisms of DNA replication, transcription, and translation. Student reasoning patterns were explored through mixed-method analyses. Results suggested that students must sort mechanistic entities into appropriate mental categories that reflect the nature of MCB mechanisms and that conflation between these categories is common. We also showed how connections between molecular mechanisms and their biological roles are part of building an integrated knowledge network as students develop expertise. We observed differences in the nature of connections between ideas related to different forms of reasoning. Finally, we provide a tentative model for MCB knowledge integration and suggest its implications for undergraduate learning. PMID:26931398

  15. The molecular biology of prostate cancer: current understanding and clinical implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandhi, Jason; Afridi, Adil; Vatsia, Sohrab; Joshi, Gargi; Joshi, Gunjan; Kaplan, Steven A; Smith, Noel L; Khan, Sardar Ali

    2018-04-01

    With continuous progress over the past few decades in understanding diagnosis, treatment, and genetics, much has been learned about the prostate cancer-diagnosed genome. A comprehensive MEDLINE® and Google scholar literature search was conducted using keyword variations relating to the genetics of prostate cancer such as chromosomal alterations, androgen receptor, castration-resistant, inheritance, polymorphisms, oncogenes, metastasis, biomarkers, and immunotherapy. Traditionally, androgen receptors (AR) have been the focus of research. Recently, identification of recurrent chromosomal alterations that lead to either multiplication of regions (gain-of-function) or deletion of regions (loss-of-function) has opened the door to greater genetic accessibility. These chromosomal aberrations lead to variation in copy number and gene expression. Some of these chromosomal alterations are inherited, while others undergo somatic mutations during disease progression. Inherited gene mutations that make one susceptible to prostate cancer have been identified with familial-linked studies. Somatic genes that progress tumorigenesis have also been identified. Research on the molecular biology of prostate cancer has characterized these genes into tumor suppressor genes or oncogenes. Additionally, genome-wide assay studies have identified many high-risk single-nucleotide polymorphisms recurrent throughout the prostate cancer-diagnosed genome. Castration-resistant prostate cancer is the most aggressive form of prostate cancer, and its research has elucidated many types of mutations associated with AR itself, including enhanced expression and amplification, point mutations, and alternative splicing. Understanding the molecular biology of prostate cancer has permitted more accurate identification using advanced biomarkers and therapy for aggressive forms using immunotherapy. An age-related disease, prostate cancer commands profound attention. With increasing life expectancy and the

  16. Understanding the implementation of complex interventions in health care: the normalization process model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogers Anne

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Normalization Process Model is a theoretical model that assists in explaining the processes by which complex interventions become routinely embedded in health care practice. It offers a framework for process evaluation and also for comparative studies of complex interventions. It focuses on the factors that promote or inhibit the routine embedding of complex interventions in health care practice. Methods A formal theory structure is used to define the model, and its internal causal relations and mechanisms. The model is broken down to show that it is consistent and adequate in generating accurate description, systematic explanation, and the production of rational knowledge claims about the workability and integration of complex interventions. Results The model explains the normalization of complex interventions by reference to four factors demonstrated to promote or inhibit the operationalization and embedding of complex interventions (interactional workability, relational integration, skill-set workability, and contextual integration. Conclusion The model is consistent and adequate. Repeated calls for theoretically sound process evaluations in randomized controlled trials of complex interventions, and policy-makers who call for a proper understanding of implementation processes, emphasize the value of conceptual tools like the Normalization Process Model.

  17. Transition metal complexes of some biologically active ligands; synthesis characterization and bioactivities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rehman, S.; Ali, N.; Nisar, M.

    2009-01-01

    Transition/representative transition metals complexes of biologically active chelating agent 1,2-dipyrolodinoethane were synthesized and characterized through spectral and analytical data. The complexes are of the formula (M(L)X/sub 2/). Where (M = Co (II), Ni (II), Cu (II), Zn (II), Hg (II) and Cd (II) and X = CI, Br, NO/sub 3/). Tetrahedral geometry has been proposed to these-metal complexes with the help of magnetic measurements, elemental analysis, chemical stoichiometry and spectroscopic data Antibacterial activity of the ligand and its metal complexes were screened against Eschereschi coli, Klebsiello pneumonia, Proteus mirabilis, Proteus vulhari, Streptococcus pneumonia, Salmonella Iyphi, Bacilh,s anthrax, Streptococcus fecalis and Staphylococcus aureus. Complexes were found to be active against Eschereschi coli, Klebsiella pneumonia, Proteus mirabilis and Proteus vulharis. (author)

  18. Top-down models in biology: explanation and control of complex living systems above the molecular level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pezzulo, Giovanni; Levin, Michael

    2016-11-01

    It is widely assumed in developmental biology and bioengineering that optimal understanding and control of complex living systems follows from models of molecular events. The success of reductionism has overshadowed attempts at top-down models and control policies in biological systems. However, other fields, including physics, engineering and neuroscience, have successfully used the explanations and models at higher levels of organization, including least-action principles in physics and control-theoretic models in computational neuroscience. Exploiting the dynamic regulation of pattern formation in embryogenesis and regeneration requires new approaches to understand how cells cooperate towards large-scale anatomical goal states. Here, we argue that top-down models of pattern homeostasis serve as proof of principle for extending the current paradigm beyond emergence and molecule-level rules. We define top-down control in a biological context, discuss the examples of how cognitive neuroscience and physics exploit these strategies, and illustrate areas in which they may offer significant advantages as complements to the mainstream paradigm. By targeting system controls at multiple levels of organization and demystifying goal-directed (cybernetic) processes, top-down strategies represent a roadmap for using the deep insights of other fields for transformative advances in regenerative medicine and systems bioengineering. © 2016 The Author(s).

  19. Stress biology and aging mechanisms: toward understanding the deep connection between adaptation to stress and longevity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epel, Elissa S; Lithgow, Gordon J

    2014-06-01

    The rate of biological aging is modulated in part by genes interacting with stressor exposures. Basic research has shown that exposure to short-term stress can strengthen cellular responses to stress ("hormetic stress"). Hormetic stress promotes longevity in part through enhanced activity of molecular chaperones and other defense mechanisms. In contrast, prolonged exposure to stress can overwhelm compensatory responses ("toxic stress") and shorten lifespan. One key question is whether the stressors that are well understood in basic models of aging can help us understand psychological stressors and human health. The psychological stress response promotes regulatory changes important in aging (e.g., increases in stress hormones, inflammation, oxidative stress, insulin). The negative effects of severe stress are well documented in humans. Potential positive effects of acute stress (stress resistance) are less studied, especially at the cellular level. Can stress resistance slow the rate of aging in humans, as it does in model organisms? If so, how can we promote stress resistance in humans? We urge a new research agenda embracing the continuum from cellular stress to psychological stress, using basic and human research in tandem. This will require interdisciplinary novel approaches that hold much promise for understanding and intervening in human chronic disease. © The Author 2014. 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.

  20. [Biological and neural bases of partner preferences in rodents: models to understand human pair bonds].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coria-Avila, G A; Hernández-Aguilar, M E; Toledo-Cárdenas, R; García-Hernández, L I; Manzo, J; Pacheco, P; Miquel, M; Pfaus, J G

    To analyse the biological and neural bases of partner preference formation in rodents as models to understand human pair bonding. Rodents are social individuals, capable of forming short- or long-lasting partner preferences that develop slowly by stimuli like cohabitation, or rapidly by stimuli like sex and stress. Dopamine, corticosteroids, oxytocin, vasopressin, and opioids form the neurochemical substrate for pair bonding in areas like the nucleus accumbens, the prefrontal cortex, the piriform cortex, the medial preoptic area, the ventral tegmental area and the medial amygdala, among others. Additional areas may participate depending on the nature of the conditioned stimuli by which and individual recognizes a preferred partner. Animal models help us understand that the capacity of an individual to display long-lasting and selective preferences depends on neural bases, selected throughout evolution. The challenge in neuroscience is to use this knowledge to create new solutions for mental problems associated with the incapacity of an individual to display a social bond, keep one, or cope with the disruption of a consolidated one.

  1. The Relationship between Biology Teachers' Understanding of the Nature of Science and the Understanding and Acceptance of the Theory of Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cofré, Hernán; Cuevas, Emilia; Becerra, Beatriz

    2017-01-01

    Despite the importance of the theory of evolution (TE) to scientific knowledge, a number of misconceptions continue to be found among biology teachers. In this context, the first objective of this study was to identify the impact of professional development programme (PDP) on teachers' understanding of nature of science (NOS) and evolution and on…

  2. Critical evaluation of the JDO API for the persistence and portability requirements of complex biological databases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Schwieger Michael

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Complex biological database systems have become key computational tools used daily by scientists and researchers. Many of these systems must be capable of executing on multiple different hardware and software configurations and are also often made available to users via the Internet. We have used the Java Data Object (JDO persistence technology to develop the database layer of such a system known as the SigPath information management system. SigPath is an example of a complex biological database that needs to store various types of information connected by many relationships. Results Using this system as an example, we perform a critical evaluation of current JDO technology; discuss the suitability of the JDO standard to achieve portability, scalability and performance. We show that JDO supports portability of the SigPath system from a relational database backend to an object database backend and achieves acceptable scalability. To answer the performance question, we have created the SigPath JDO application benchmark that we distribute under the Gnu General Public License. This benchmark can be used as an example of using JDO technology to create a complex biological database and makes it possible for vendors and users of the technology to evaluate the performance of other JDO implementations for similar applications. Conclusions The SigPath JDO benchmark and our discussion of JDO technology in the context of biological databases will be useful to bioinformaticians who design new complex biological databases and aim to create systems that can be ported easily to a variety of database backends.

  3. Perspective: Differential dynamic microscopy extracts multi-scale activity in complex fluids and biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerbino, Roberto; Cicuta, Pietro

    2017-09-01

    Differential dynamic microscopy (DDM) is a technique that exploits optical microscopy to obtain local, multi-scale quantitative information about dynamic samples, in most cases without user intervention. It is proving extremely useful in understanding dynamics in liquid suspensions, soft materials, cells, and tissues. In DDM, image sequences are analyzed via a combination of image differences and spatial Fourier transforms to obtain information equivalent to that obtained by means of light scattering techniques. Compared to light scattering, DDM offers obvious advantages, principally (a) simplicity of the setup; (b) possibility of removing static contributions along the optical path; (c) power of simultaneous different microscopy contrast mechanisms; and (d) flexibility of choosing an analysis region, analogous to a scattering volume. For many questions, DDM has also advantages compared to segmentation/tracking approaches and to correlation techniques like particle image velocimetry. The very straightforward DDM approach, originally demonstrated with bright field microscopy of aqueous colloids, has lately been used to probe a variety of other complex fluids and biological systems with many different imaging methods, including dark-field, differential interference contrast, wide-field, light-sheet, and confocal microscopy. The number of adopting groups is rapidly increasing and so are the applications. Here, we briefly recall the working principles of DDM, we highlight its advantages and limitations, we outline recent experimental breakthroughs, and we provide a perspective on future challenges and directions. DDM can become a standard primary tool in every laboratory equipped with a microscope, at the very least as a first bias-free automated evaluation of the dynamics in a system.

  4. Revealing complex function, process and pathway interactions with high-throughput expression and biological annotation data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Nitesh Kumar; Ernst, Mathias; Liebscher, Volkmar; Fuellen, Georg; Taher, Leila

    2016-10-20

    The biological relationships both between and within the functions, processes and pathways that operate within complex biological systems are only poorly characterized, making the interpretation of large scale gene expression datasets extremely challenging. Here, we present an approach that integrates gene expression and biological annotation data to identify and describe the interactions between biological functions, processes and pathways that govern a phenotype of interest. The product is a global, interconnected network, not of genes but of functions, processes and pathways, that represents the biological relationships within the system. We validated our approach on two high-throughput expression datasets describing organismal and organ development. Our findings are well supported by the available literature, confirming that developmental processes and apoptosis play key roles in cell differentiation. Furthermore, our results suggest that processes related to pluripotency and lineage commitment, which are known to be critical for development, interact mainly indirectly, through genes implicated in more general biological processes. Moreover, we provide evidence that supports the relevance of cell spatial organization in the developing liver for proper liver function. Our strategy can be viewed as an abstraction that is useful to interpret high-throughput data and devise further experiments.

  5. Spies and Bloggers: New Synthetic Biology Tools to Understand Microbial Processes in Soils and Sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masiello, C. A.; Silberg, J. J.; Cheng, H. Y.; Del Valle, I.; Fulk, E. M.; Gao, X.; Bennett, G. N.

    2017-12-01

    Microbes can be programmed through synthetic biology to report on their behavior, informing researchers when their environment has triggered changes in their gene expression (e.g. in response to shifts in O2 or H2O), or when they have participated in a specific step of an elemental cycle (e.g. denitrification). This use of synthetic biology has the potential to significantly improve our understanding of microbes' roles in elemental and water cycling, because it allows reporting on the environment from the perspective of a microbe, matching the measurement scale exactly to the scale that a microbe experiences. However, synthetic microbes have not yet seen wide use in soil and sediment laboratory experiments because synthetic organisms typically report by fluorescing, making their signals difficult to detect outside the petri dish. We are developing a new suite of microbial programs that report instead by releasing easily-detected gases, allowing the real-time, noninvasive monitoring of behaviors in sediments and soils. Microbial biosensors can, in theory, be programmed to detect dynamic processes that contribute to a wide range of geobiological processes, including C cycling (biofilm production, methanogenesis, and synthesis of extracellular enzymes that degrade organic matter), N cycling (expression of enzymes that underlie different steps of the N cycle) and potentially S cycling. We will provide an overview of the potential uses of gas-reporting biosensors in soil and sediment lab experiments, and will report the development of the systematics of these sensors. Successful development of gas biosensors for laboratory use will require addressing issues including: engineering the intensity and selectivity of microbial gas production to maximize the signal to noise ratio; normalizing the gas reporter signal to cell population size, managing gas diffusion effects on signal shape; and developing multiple gases that can be used in parallel.

  6. Chinese Herbal Medicine Meets Biological Networks of Complex Diseases: A Computational Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shuo Gu

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available With the rapid development of cheminformatics, computational biology, and systems biology, great progress has been made recently in the computational research of Chinese herbal medicine with in-depth understanding towards pharmacognosy. This paper summarized these studies in the aspects of computational methods, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM compound databases, and TCM network pharmacology. Furthermore, we chose arachidonic acid metabolic network as a case study to demonstrate the regulatory function of herbal medicine in the treatment of inflammation at network level. Finally, a computational workflow for the network-based TCM study, derived from our previous successful applications, was proposed.

  7. Chinese Herbal Medicine Meets Biological Networks of Complex Diseases: A Computational Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Shuo; Pei, Jianfeng

    2017-01-01

    With the rapid development of cheminformatics, computational biology, and systems biology, great progress has been made recently in the computational research of Chinese herbal medicine with in-depth understanding towards pharmacognosy. This paper summarized these studies in the aspects of computational methods, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) compound databases, and TCM network pharmacology. Furthermore, we chose arachidonic acid metabolic network as a case study to demonstrate the regulatory function of herbal medicine in the treatment of inflammation at network level. Finally, a computational workflow for the network-based TCM study, derived from our previous successful applications, was proposed.

  8. Implementation of Complex Biological Logic Circuits Using Spatially Distributed Multicellular Consortia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urrios, Arturo; de Nadal, Eulàlia; Solé, Ricard; Posas, Francesc

    2016-01-01

    Engineered synthetic biological devices have been designed to perform a variety of functions from sensing molecules and bioremediation to energy production and biomedicine. Notwithstanding, a major limitation of in vivo circuit implementation is the constraint associated to the use of standard methodologies for circuit design. Thus, future success of these devices depends on obtaining circuits with scalable complexity and reusable parts. Here we show how to build complex computational devices using multicellular consortia and space as key computational elements. This spatial modular design grants scalability since its general architecture is independent of the circuit’s complexity, minimizes wiring requirements and allows component reusability with minimal genetic engineering. The potential use of this approach is demonstrated by implementation of complex logical functions with up to six inputs, thus demonstrating the scalability and flexibility of this method. The potential implications of our results are outlined. PMID:26829588

  9. Evaluating the biological activity of oil-polluted soils using a complex index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kabirov, R. R.; Kireeva, N. A.; Kabirov, T. R.; Dubovik, I. Ye.; Yakupova, A. B.; Safiullina, L. M.

    2012-02-01

    A complex index characterizing the biological activity of soils (BAS) is suggested. It is based on an estimate of the level of activity of catalase; the number of heterotrophic and hydrocarbon oxidizing microorganisms, microscopic fungi, algae, and cyanobacteria; and the degree of development of higher plants and insects in the studied soil. The data on using the BAS coefficient for evaluating the efficiency of rehabilitation measures for oil-polluted soils are given. Such measures included introducing the following biological preparations: Lenoil based on a natural consortium of microorganisms Bacillus brevis and Arthrobacter sp.; the Azolen biofertilizer with complex action based on Azotobacter vinelandii; the Belvitamil biopreparation, which is the active silt of pulp and paper production; and a ready-mixed industrial association of aerobic and anaerobic microorganisms that contains hydrocarbon oxidizing microorganisms of the Arthrobacter, Bacillus, Candida, Desulfovibrio, and Pseudomonas genera.

  10. Tackling complexities in understanding the social determinants of health: the contribution of ethnographic research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bandyopadhyay, Mridula

    2011-11-25

    The complexities inherent in understanding the social determinants of health are often not well-served by quantitative approaches. My aim is to show that well-designed and well-conducted ethnographic studies have an important contribution to make in this regard. Ethnographic research designs are a difficult but rigorous approach to research questions that require us to understand the complexity of people's social and cultural lives. I draw on an ethnographic study to describe the complexities of studying maternal health in a rural area in India. I then show how the lessons learnt in that setting and context can be applied to studies done in very different settings. I show how ethnographic research depends for rigour on a theoretical framework for sample selection; why immersion in the community under study, and rapport building with research participants, is important to ensure rich and meaningful data; and how flexible approaches to data collection lead to the gradual emergence of an analysis based on intense cross-referencing with community views and thus a conclusion that explains the similarities and differences observed. When using ethnographic research design it can be difficult to specify in advance the exact details of the study design. Researchers can encounter issues in the field that require them to change what they planned on doing. In rigorous ethnographic studies, the researcher in the field is the research instrument and needs to be well trained in the method. Ethnographic research is challenging, but nevertheless provides a rewarding way of researching complex health problems that require an understanding of the social and cultural determinants of health.

  11. Large, dynamic, multi-protein complexes: a challenge for structural biology

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Rozycki, B.; Bouřa, Evžen

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 26, č. 46 (2014), 463103/1-463103/11 ISSN 0953-8984 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LO1302 EU Projects: European Commission(XE) 333916 - STARPI4K Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : protein structure * multi-protein complexes * hybrid methods of structural biology Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry Impact factor: 2.346, year: 2014

  12. Understanding Crew Decision-Making in the Presence of Complexity: A Flight Simulation Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Steven D.; Daniels, Taumi S.; Evans, Emory; deHaag, Maarten Uijt; Duan, Pengfei

    2013-01-01

    Crew decision making and response have long been leading causal and contributing factors associated with aircraft accidents. Further, it is anticipated that future aircraft and operational environments will increase exposure to risks related to these factors if proactive steps are not taken to account for ever-increasing complexity. A flight simulation study was designed to collect data to help in understanding how complexity can, or may, be manifest. More specifically, an experimental apparatus was constructed that allowed for manipulation of information complexity and uncertainty, while also manipulating operational complexity and uncertainty. Through these manipulations, and the aid of experienced airline pilots, several issues have been discovered, related most prominently to the influence of information content, quality, and management. Flight crews were immersed in an environment that included new operational complexities suggested for the future air transportation system as well as new technological complexities (e.g. electronic flight bags, expanded data link services, synthetic and enhanced vision systems, and interval management automation). In addition, a set of off-nominal situations were emulated. These included, for example, adverse weather conditions, traffic deviations, equipment failures, poor data quality, communication errors, and unexpected clearances, or changes to flight plans. Each situation was based on one or more reference events from past accidents or incidents, or on a similar case that had been used in previous developmental tests or studies. Over the course of the study, 10 twopilot airline crews participated, completing over 230 flights. Each flight consisted of an approach beginning at 10,000 ft. Based on the recorded data and pilot and research observations, preliminary results are presented regarding decision-making issues in the presence of the operational and technological complexities encountered during the flights.

  13. Draft Genome of the Pearl Oyster Pinctada fucata: A Platform for Understanding Bivalve Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeuchi, Takeshi; Kawashima, Takeshi; Koyanagi, Ryo; Gyoja, Fuki; Tanaka, Makiko; Ikuta, Tetsuro; Shoguchi, Eiichi; Fujiwara, Mayuki; Shinzato, Chuya; Hisata, Kanako; Fujie, Manabu; Usami, Takeshi; Nagai, Kiyohito; Maeyama, Kaoru; Okamoto, Kikuhiko; Aoki, Hideo; Ishikawa, Takashi; Masaoka, Tetsuji; Fujiwara, Atushi; Endo, Kazuyoshi; Endo, Hirotoshi; Nagasawa, Hiromichi; Kinoshita, Shigeharu; Asakawa, Shuichi; Watabe, Shugo; Satoh, Nori

    2012-01-01

    The study of the pearl oyster Pinctada fucata is key to increasing our understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in pearl biosynthesis and biology of bivalve molluscs. We sequenced ∼1150-Mb genome at ∼40-fold coverage using the Roche 454 GS-FLX and Illumina GAIIx sequencers. The sequences were assembled into contigs with N50 = 1.6 kb (total contig assembly reached to 1024 Mb) and scaffolds with N50 = 14.5 kb. The pearl oyster genome is AT-rich, with a GC content of 34%. DNA transposons, retrotransposons, and tandem repeat elements occupied 0.4, 1.5, and 7.9% of the genome, respectively (a total of 9.8%). Version 1.0 of the P. fucata draft genome contains 23 257 complete gene models, 70% of which are supported by the corresponding expressed sequence tags. The genes include those reported to have an association with bio-mineralization. Genes encoding transcription factors and signal transduction molecules are present in numbers comparable with genomes of other metazoans. Genome-wide molecular phylogeny suggests that the lophotrochozoan represents a distinct clade from ecdysozoans. Our draft genome of the pearl oyster thus provides a platform for the identification of selection markers and genes for calcification, knowledge of which will be important in the pearl industry. PMID:22315334

  14. Found in translation: understanding the biology and behavior of experimental traumatic brain injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bondi, Corina O.; Semple, Bridgette D.; Noble-Haeusslein, Linda J.; Osier, Nicole D.; Carlson, Shaun W.; Dixon, C. Edward; Giza, Christopher C.; Kline, Anthony E.

    2014-01-01

    BONDI, C.O., B.D. Semple, L.J. Noble-Haeusslein, N.D. Osier, S.W. Carlson, C.E. Dixon, C.C. Giza and A.E. Kline. Found in translation: understanding the biology and behavior of experimental traumatic brain injury. NEUROSCI BIOBEHAV REV. The aim of this review is to discuss in greater detail the topics covered in the recent symposium entitled “Traumatic brain injury: laboratory and clinical perspectives,” presented at the 2014 International Behavioral Neuroscience Society annual meeting. Herein we review contemporary laboratory models of traumatic brain injury (TBI) including common assays for sensorimotor and cognitive behavior. New modalities to evaluate social behavior after injury to the developing brain, as well as the attentional set-shifting test (AST) as a measure of executive function in TBI, will be highlighted. Environmental enrichment (EE) will be discussed as a preclinical model of neurorehabilitation, and finally, an evidence-based approach to sports-related concussion will be considered. The review consists predominantly of published data, but some discussion of ongoing or future directions is provided. PMID:25496906

  15. Understanding the biological activity of high rate algae ponds through the calculation of oxygen balances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arbib, Zouhayr; de Godos Crespo, Ignacio; Corona, Enrique Lara; Rogalla, Frank

    2017-06-01

    Microalgae culture in high rate algae ponds (HRAP) is an environmentally friendly technology for wastewater treatment. However, for the implementation of these systems, a better understanding of the oxygenation potential and the influence of climate conditions is required. In this work, the rates of oxygen production, consumption, and exchange with the atmosphere were calculated under varying conditions of solar irradiance and dilution rate during six months of operation in a real scale unit. This analysis allowed determining the biological response of these dynamic systems. The rates of oxygen consumption measured were considerably higher than the values calculated based on the organic loading rate. The response to light intensity in terms of oxygen production in the bioreactor was described with one of the models proposed for microalgae culture in dense concentrations. This model is based on the availability of light inside the culture and the specific response of microalgae to this parameter. The specific response to solar radiation intensity showed a reasonable stability in spite of the fluctuations due to meteorological conditions. The methodology developed is a useful tool for optimization and prediction of the performance of these systems.

  16. Tumour biology of obesity-related cancers: understanding the molecular concept for better diagnosis and treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teoh, Seong Lin; Das, Srijit

    2016-11-01

    Obesity continues to be a major global problem. Various cancers are related to obesity and proper understanding of their aetiology, especially their molecular tumour biology is important for early diagnosis and better treatment. Genes play an important role in the development of obesity. Few genes such as leptin, leptin receptor encoded by the db (diabetes), pro-opiomelanocortin, AgRP and NPY and melanocortin-4 receptors and insulin-induced gene 2 were linked to obesity. MicroRNAs control gene expression via mRNA degradation and protein translation inhibition and influence cell differentiation, cell growth and cell death. Overexpression of miR-143 inhibits tumour growth by suppressing B cell lymphoma 2, extracellular signal-regulated kinase-5 activities and KRAS oncogene. Cancers of the breast, uterus, renal, thyroid and liver are also related to obesity. Any disturbance in the production of sex hormones and insulin, leads to distortion in the balance between cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. The possible mechanism linking obesity to cancer involves alteration in the level of adipokines and sex hormones. These mediators act as biomarkers for cancer progression and act as targets for cancer therapy and prevention. Interestingly, many anti-cancerous drugs are also beneficial in treating obesity and vice versa. We also reviewed the possible link in the mechanism of few drugs which act both on cancer and obesity. The present review may be important for molecular biologists, oncologists and clinicians treating cancers and also pave the way for better therapeutic options.

  17. Synthesis, characterization, and biological activity of a new palladium(II) complex with deoxyalliin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Corbi, P.P.; Massabni, A.C. [Inst. de Quimica - UNESP, Dept., Dept. de Quimica Geral e Inoganica, Araraquara (Brazil)]. E-mail: pedrocorbi@yahoo.com; Moreira, A.G. [Inst. de Quimica - UNESP, Dept. de Quimica Geral e Inoganica, Araraquara (Brazil); Faculdade de Medicina de Ribeirao Preto - USP, Dept. de Bioquimica e Imunologia, Ribeirao Preto (Brazil); Medrano, F.J. [Laboratorio Nacional de Luz Sincrotron - LNLS, Campinas (Brazil); Jasiulionis, M.G. [Escola Paulista de Medicina - UNIFESP, Dept. de Micro-Imuno-Parasitologia, Sao Paulo (Brazil); Costa-Neto, C.M. [Faculdade de Medicina de Ribeirao Preto - USP, Dept. de Bioquimica e Imunologia, Ribeirao Preto (Brazil)

    2005-02-15

    Synthesis, characterization, and biological activity of a new water-soluble Pd(II)-deoxyalliin (S-allyl-L-cysteine) complex are described in this article. Elemental and thermal analysis for the complex are consistent with the formula [Pd(C{sub 6}H{sub 10}NO{sub 2}S){sub 2}]. {sup 13}C NMR, {sup 1}H NMR, and IR spectroscopy show coordination of the ligand to Pd(II) through S and N atoms in a square planar geometry. Final residue of the thermal treatment was identified as a mixture of PdO and metallic Pd. Antiproliferative assays using aqueous solutions of the complex against HeLa and TM5 tumor cells showed a pronounced activity of the complex even at low concentrations. After incubation for 24 h, the complex induced cytotoxic effect over HeLa cells when used at concentrations higher than 0.40 mmol/L. At lower concentrations, the complex was nontoxic, indicating its action is probably due to cell cycle arrest, rather than cell death. In agreement with these results, the flow cytometric analysis indicated that after incubation for 24 h at low concentrations of the complex cells are arrested in G0/G1. (author)

  18. Biological Recovery of Platinum Complexes from Diluted Aqueous Streams by Axenic Cultures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Synthia Maes

    Full Text Available The widespread use of platinum in high-tech and catalytic applications has led to the production of diverse Pt loaded wastewaters. Effective recovery strategies are needed for the treatment of low concentrated waste streams to prevent pollution and to stimulate recovery of this precious resource. The biological recovery of five common environmental Pt-complexes was studied under acidic conditions; the chloro-complexes PtCl42- and PtCl62-, the amine-complex Pt(NH34Cl2 and the pharmaceutical complexes cisplatin and carboplatin. Five bacterial species were screened on their platinum recovery potential; the Gram-negative species Shewanella oneidensis MR-1, Cupriavidus metallidurans CH34, Geobacter metallireducens, and Pseudomonas stutzeri, and the Gram-positive species Bacillus toyonensis. Overall, PtCl42- and PtCl62- were completely recovered by all bacterial species while only S. oneidensis and C. metallidurans were able to recover cisplatin quantitatively (99%, all in the presence of H2 as electron donor at pH 2. Carboplatin was only partly recovered (max. 25% at pH 7, whereas no recovery was observed in the case of the Pt-tetraamine complex. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM revealed the presence of both intra- and extracellular platinum particles. Flow cytometry based microbial viability assessment demonstrated the decrease in number of intact bacterial cells during platinum reduction and indicated C. metallidurans to be the most resistant species. This study showed the effective and complete biological recovery of three common Pt-complexes, and estimated the fate and transport of the Pt-complexes in wastewater treatment plants and the natural environment.

  19. On improved understanding of plasma-chemical processes in complex low-temperature plasmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röpcke, Jürgen; Loffhagen, Detlef; von Wahl, Eric; Nave, Andy S. C.; Hamann, Stephan; van Helden, Jean-Piere H.; Lang, Norbert; Kersten, Holger

    2018-05-01

    Over the last years, chemical sensing using optical emission spectroscopy (OES) in the visible spectral range has been combined with methods of mid infrared laser absorption spectroscopy (MIR-LAS) in the molecular fingerprint region from 3 to 20 μm, which contains strong rotational-vibrational absorption bands of a large variety of gaseous species. This optical approach established powerful in situ diagnostic tools to study plasma-chemical processes of complex low-temperature plasmas. The methods of MIR-LAS enable to detect stable and transient molecular species in ground and excited states and to measure the concentrations and temperatures of reactive species in plasmas. Since kinetic processes are inherent to discharges ignited in molecular gases, high time resolution on sub-second timescales is frequently desired for fundamental studies as well as for process monitoring in applied research and industry. In addition to high sensitivity and good temporal resolution, the capacity for broad spectral coverage enabling multicomponent detection is further expanding the use of OES and MIR-LAS techniques. Based on selected examples, this paper reports on recent achievements in the understanding of complex low-temperature plasmas. Recently, a link with chemical modeling of the plasma has been provided, which is the ultimate objective for a better understanding of the chemical and reaction kinetic processes occurring in the plasma. Contribution to the Topical Issue "Fundamentals of Complex Plasmas", edited by Jürgen Meichsner, Michael Bonitz, Holger Fehske, Alexander Piel.

  20. Degeneracy: a link between evolvability, robustness and complexity in biological systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Whitacre James M

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract A full accounting of biological robustness remains elusive; both in terms of the mechanisms by which robustness is achieved and the forces that have caused robustness to grow over evolutionary time. Although its importance to topics such as ecosystem services and resilience is well recognized, the broader relationship between robustness and evolution is only starting to be fully appreciated. A renewed interest in this relationship has been prompted by evidence that mutational robustness can play a positive role in the discovery of adaptive innovations (evolvability and evidence of an intimate relationship between robustness and complexity in biology. This paper offers a new perspective on the mechanics of evolution and the origins of complexity, robustness, and evolvability. Here we explore the hypothesis that degeneracy, a partial overlap in the functioning of multi-functional components, plays a central role in the evolution and robustness of complex forms. In support of this hypothesis, we present evidence that degeneracy is a fundamental source of robustness, it is intimately tied to multi-scaled complexity, and it establishes conditions that are necessary for system evolvability.

  1. Mediation, moderation, and context: Understanding complex relations among cognition, affect, and health behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiviniemi, Marc T; Ellis, Erin M; Hall, Marissa G; Moss, Jennifer L; Lillie, Sarah E; Brewer, Noel T; Klein, William M P

    2018-01-01

    Researchers have historically treated cognition and affect as separate constructs in motivating health behaviour. We present a framework and empirical evidence for complex relations between cognition and affect in predicting health behaviour. Main Outcome, Design and Results: First, affect and cognition can mediate each other's relation to health behaviour. Second, affect and cognition can moderate the other's impact. Third, context can change the interplay of affect and cognition. Fourth, affect and cognition may be indelibly fused in some psychological constructs (e.g. worry, anticipated regret and reactance). These four propositions in our framework are not mutually exclusive. Examination of the types of complex relations described here can benefit theory development, empirical testing of theories and intervention design. Doing so will advance the understanding of mechanisms involved in regulation of health behaviours and the effectiveness of interventions to change health behaviours.

  2. Novel synthesis on poly (vinyl alcohol): characterization, complexation a biological activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Sawy, N.M.; Elassar, A.Z.; Al-Fulaij, O.

    2002-01-01

    Poly(vinyl alcohol), PVA, readily condensed with phenyl hydrazine and malononitrile in basic medium to give the hydrazone and pyran derivatives, respectively. PVA reacted with chloroacetonitrile, biuet and thiophene carbonyl chloride to give modified polymeric materials. While addition of PVA to acrylonitrile and phenyl isothiocyanate gives the ether and thiocarbamate ester derivatives, respectively. Hydroxylamine hydrochloride reacted with the modified, carbonitrile containing, polymer to give the amidoxime derivative. The amidoximated products of PVA and carbamate ester of polymeric material were complexed with CUCL2 solution. The complex materials were confirmed by using UV and ESDS measurements. The morphology of PVA and complex with CUII was observed by SEM. Biological activity of some of the prepared compounds was investigated toward bacteria and fungi

  3. Understanding valve program complexity in a refurbishment environment - learning from the past

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roth, H.E.

    2012-01-01

    The complexity of Valve Program development, planning, execution and management in a refurbishment environment is an enormous undertaking requiring the proper coordination and integration of many moving parts. As such, lack of attention and understanding of this complexity has led to significant cost and schedule overruns in past refurbishment projects in the province. OPEX indicates the challenges in completing valve scope during refurbishments are related but not limited to; lack of detailed condition assessments, improper scope development, insignificant strategic approach to work task planning, scheduling and procurement, absence of contingency planning for common ‘as found’ conditions during execution, lack of proper training requirements, etc. In addition, past contracting strategies to employ numerous companies in collaboration to complete such a complex and specialized program, has resulted in further complications surrounding the management and integration of multiple quality programs and internal company processes. Finally, the aftermath of such fragmented projects results in an absolute closeout nightmare, often times taking years to locate, sift through and re-integrate pertinent information back into customer systems. Valve Program complexity cannot be understood by just anyone, only those that have lived through a refurbishment project and experienced the challenges mentioned above have the knowledge, skill, and ability to appreciate how to tactically apply past learning to realize future improvements. Furthermore, effective contractor-customer collaboration is crucial; true and in-depth knowledge and understanding of the customer quality programs, engineering and work management processes, configuration management requirements, and most importantly the imperative significance of nuclear safety, are all essential components to ensure overall alignment and program success. (author)

  4. Understanding valve program complexity in a refurbishment environment - learning from the past

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Roth, H.E. [Babcock & Wilcox Canada Ltd., Cambridge, Ontario (Canada)

    2012-07-01

    The complexity of Valve Program development, planning, execution and management in a refurbishment environment is an enormous undertaking requiring the proper coordination and integration of many moving parts. As such, lack of attention and understanding of this complexity has led to significant cost and schedule overruns in past refurbishment projects in the province. OPEX indicates the challenges in completing valve scope during refurbishments are related but not limited to; lack of detailed condition assessments, improper scope development, insignificant strategic approach to work task planning, scheduling and procurement, absence of contingency planning for common ‘as found’ conditions during execution, lack of proper training requirements, etc. In addition, past contracting strategies to employ numerous companies in collaboration to complete such a complex and specialized program, has resulted in further complications surrounding the management and integration of multiple quality programs and internal company processes. Finally, the aftermath of such fragmented projects results in an absolute closeout nightmare, often times taking years to locate, sift through and re-integrate pertinent information back into customer systems. Valve Program complexity cannot be understood by just anyone, only those that have lived through a refurbishment project and experienced the challenges mentioned above have the knowledge, skill, and ability to appreciate how to tactically apply past learning to realize future improvements. Furthermore, effective contractor-customer collaboration is crucial; true and in-depth knowledge and understanding of the customer quality programs, engineering and work management processes, configuration management requirements, and most importantly the imperative significance of nuclear safety, are all essential components to ensure overall alignment and program success. (author)

  5. Toward understanding the thermodynamics of TALSPEAK process. Medium effects on actinide complexation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zalupski, Peter R.; Martin, Leigh R.; Nash, Ken; Nakamura, Yoshinobu; Yamamoto, Masahiko

    2009-01-01

    The ingenious combination of lactate and diethylenetriamine-N,N,N',N(double p rime),N(double p rime)-pentaacetic acid (DTPA) as an aqueous actinide-complexing medium forms the basis of the successful separation of americium and curium from lanthanides known as the TALSPEAK process. While numerous reports in the prior literature have focused on the optimization of this solvent extraction system, considerably less attention has been devoted to the understanding of the basic thermodynamic features of the complex fluids responsible for the separation. The available thermochemical information of both lactate and DTPA protonation and metal complexation reactions are representative of the behavior of these ions under idealized conditions. Our previous studies of medium effects on lactate protonation suggest that significant departures from the speciation predicted based on reported thermodynamic values should be expected in the TALSPEAK aqueous environment. Thermodynamic parameters describing the separation chemistry of this process thus require further examination at conditions significantly removed from conventional ideal systems commonly employed in fundamental solution chemistry. Such thermodynamic characterization is the key to predictive modelling of TALSPEAK. Improved understanding will, in principle, allow process technologists to more efficiently respond to off-normal conditions during large scale process operation. In this report, the results of calorimetric and potentiometric investigations of the effects of aqueous electrolytes on the thermodynamic parameters for lactate protonation and lactate complexation of americium and neodymium will be presented. Studies on the lactate protonation equilibrium will clearly illustrate distinct thermodynamic variations between strong electrolyte aqueous systems and buffered lactate environment.

  6. Synthesis, Characterization and Biological Evaluation of Transition Metal Complexes Derived from N, S Bidentate Ligands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Enis Nadia Md Yusof

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Two bidentate NS ligands were synthesized by the condensation reaction of S-2-methylbenzyldithiocarbazate (S2MBDTC with 2-methoxybenzaldehyde (2MB and 3-methoxybenzaldehyde (3MB. The ligands were reacted separately with acetates of Cu(II, Ni(II and Zn(II yielding 1:2 (metal:ligand complexes. The metal complexes formed were expected to have a general formula of [M(NS2] where M = Cu2+, Ni2+, and Zn2+. These compounds were characterized by elemental analysis, molar conductivity, magnetic susceptibility and various spectroscopic techniques. The magnetic susceptibility measurements and spectral results supported the predicted coordination geometry in which the Schiff bases behaved as bidentate NS donor ligands coordinating via the azomethine nitrogen and thiolate sulfur. The molecular structures of the isomeric S2M2MBH (1 and S2M3MBH (2 were established by X-ray crystallography to have very similar l-shaped structures. The Schiff bases and their metal complexes were evaluated for their biological activities against estrogen receptor-positive (MCF-7 and estrogen receptor-negative (MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines. Only the Cu(II complexes showed marked cytotoxicity against the cancer cell lines. Both Schiff bases and other metal complexes were found to be inactive. In concordance with the cytotoxicity studies, the DNA binding studies indicated that Cu(II complexes have a strong DNA binding affinity.

  7. Understanding complexities of synaptic transmission in medically intractable seizures: A paradigm of epilepsy research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jyotirmoy Banerjee

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Investigating the changes associated with the development of epileptic state in humans is complex and requires a multidisciplinary approach. Understanding the intricacies of medically intractable epilepsy still remains a challenge for neurosurgeons across the world. A significant number of patients who has undergone resective brain surgery for epilepsy still continue to have seizures. The reason behind this therapy resistance still eludes us. Thus to develop a cure for the difficult to treat epilepsy, we need to comprehensively study epileptogenesis. Although various animal models are developed but none of them replicate the pathological conditions in humans. So the ideal way to understand epileptogenecity is to examine the tissue resected for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Advanced imaging and electrical localization procedures are utilized to establish the epileptogenic zone in epilepsy patients. Further molecular and cytological studies are required for the microscopic analysis of brain samples collected from the epileptogenic focus. As alterations in inhibitory as well as excitatory synaptic transmission are key features of epilepsy, understanding the regulation of neurotransmission in the resected surgery zone is of immense importance. Here we summarize various modalities of in vitro slice analysis from the resected brain specimen to understand the changes in GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic transmission in epileptogenic zone. We also review evidence pertaining to the proposed role of nicotinic receptors in abnormal synaptic transmission which is one of the major causes of epileptiform activity. Elucidation of current concepts in regulation of synaptic transmission will help develop therapies for epilepsy cases that cannot me managed pharmacologically.

  8. Do Zoo Visitors Need Zoology Knowledge to Understand Conservation Messages? An Exploration of the Public Understanding of Animal Biology and of the Conservation of Biodiversity in a Zoo Setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dove, Tracy; Byrne, Jenny

    2014-01-01

    This study explores the current knowledge and understanding about animal biology of zoo visitors and investigates whether knowledge of animal biology influences the ability of people to understand how human activity affects biodiversity. Zoos can play a role in the development of scientific literacy in the fields of animal biology and biodiversity…

  9. A network biology approach to understanding the importance of chameleon proteins in human physiology and pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahramali, Golnaz; Goliaei, Bahram; Minuchehr, Zarrin; Marashi, Sayed-Amir

    2017-02-01

    Chameleon proteins are proteins which include sequences that can adopt α-helix-β-strand (HE-chameleon) or α-helix-coil (HC-chameleon) or β-strand-coil (CE-chameleon) structures to operate their crucial biological functions. In this study, using a network-based approach, we examined the chameleon proteins to give a better knowledge on these proteins. We focused on proteins with identical chameleon sequences with more than or equal to seven residues long in different PDB entries, which adopt HE-chameleon, HC-chameleon, and CE-chameleon structures in the same protein. One hundred and ninety-one human chameleon proteins were identified via our in-house program. Then, protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks, Gene ontology (GO) enrichment, disease network, and pathway enrichment analyses were performed for our derived data set. We discovered that there are chameleon sequences which reside in protein-protein interaction regions between two proteins critical for their dual function. Analysis of the PPI networks for chameleon proteins introduced five hub proteins, namely TP53, EGFR, HSP90AA1, PPARA, and HIF1A, which were presented in four PPI clusters. The outcomes demonstrate that the chameleon regions are in critical domains of these proteins and are important in the development and treatment of human cancers. The present report is the first network-based functional study of chameleon proteins using computational approaches and might provide a new perspective for understanding the mechanisms of diseases helping us in developing new medical therapies along with discovering new proteins with chameleon properties which are highly important in cancer.

  10. Experimental and Modeling Approaches for Understanding the Effect of Gene Expression Noise in Biological Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Holloway

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Biological development involves numerous chemical and physical processes which must act in concert to reliably produce a cell, a tissue, or a body. To be successful, the developing organism must be robust to variability at many levels, such as the environment (e.g., temperature, moisture, upstream information (such as long-range positional information gradients, or intrinsic noise due to the stochastic nature of low concentration chemical kinetics. The latter is especially relevant to the regulation of gene expression in cell differentiation. The temporal stochasticity of gene expression has been studied in single celled organisms for nearly two decades, but only recently have techniques become available to gather temporally-resolved data across spatially-distributed gene expression patterns in developing multicellular organisms. These demonstrate temporal noisy “bursting” in the number of gene transcripts per cell, raising the question of how the transcript number defining a particular cell type is produced, such that one cell type can reliably be distinguished from a neighboring cell of different type along a tissue boundary. Stochastic spatio-temporal modeling of tissue-wide expression patterns can identify signatures for specific types of gene regulation, which can be used to extract regulatory mechanism information from experimental time series. This Perspective focuses on using this type of approach to study gene expression noise during the anterior-posterior segmentation of the fruit fly embryo. Advances in experimental and theoretical techniques will lead to an increasing quantification of expression noise that can be used to understand how regulatory mechanisms contribute to embryonic robustness across a range of developmental processes.

  11. How does undergraduate college biology students' level of understanding, in regard to the role of the seed plant root system, relate to their level of understanding of photosynthesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Njeng'ere, James Gicheha

    This research study investigated how undergraduate college biology students' level of understanding of the role of the seed plant root system relates to their level of understanding of photosynthesis. This research was conducted with 65 undergraduate non-majors biology who had completed 1 year of biology at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond. A root probe instrument was developed from some scientifically acceptable propositional statements about the root system, the process of photosynthesis, as well as the holistic nature of the tree. These were derived from research reviews of the science education and the arboriculture literature. This was administered to 65 students selected randomly from class lists of the two institutions. Most of the root probe's items were based on the Live Oak tree. An in-depth, clinical interview-based analysis was conducted with 12 of those tested students. A team of root experts participated by designing, validating and answering the same questions that the students were asked. A "systems" lens as defined by a team of college instructors, root experts (Shigo, 1991), and this researcher was used to interpret the results. A correlational coefficient determining students' level of understanding of the root system and their level of understanding of the process of photosynthesis was established by means of Pearson's r correlation (r = 0.328) using the SAS statistical analysis (SAS, 1987). From this a coefficient of determination (r2 = 0.104) was determined. Students' level of understanding of the Live Oak root system (mean score 5.94) was not statistically different from their level of understanding of the process of photosynthesis (mean score 5.54) as assessed by the root probe, t (129) = 0.137, p > 0.05 one tailed-test. This suggests that, to some degree, level of the root system limits level of understanding of photosynthesis and vice versa. Analysis of quantitative and qualitative

  12. Energy landscape scheme for an intuitive understanding of complex domain dynamics in ferroelectric thin films.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Tae Heon; Yoon, Jong-Gul; Baek, Seung Hyub; Park, Woong-kyu; Yang, Sang Mo; Yup Jang, Seung; Min, Taeyuun; Chung, Jin-Seok; Eom, Chang-Beom; Noh, Tae Won

    2015-07-01

    Fundamental understanding of domain dynamics in ferroic materials has been a longstanding issue because of its relevance to many systems and to the design of nanoscale domain-wall devices. Despite many theoretical and experimental studies, a full understanding of domain dynamics still remains incomplete, partly due to complex interactions between domain-walls and disorder. We report domain-shape-preserving deterministic domain-wall motion, which directly confirms microscopic return point memory, by observing domain-wall breathing motion in ferroelectric BiFeO3 thin film using stroboscopic piezoresponse force microscopy. Spatial energy landscape that provides new insights into domain dynamics is also mapped based on the breathing motion of domain walls. The evolution of complex domain structure can be understood by the process of occupying the lowest available energy states of polarization in the energy landscape which is determined by defect-induced internal fields. Our result highlights a pathway for the novel design of ferroelectric domain-wall devices through the engineering of energy landscape using defect-induced internal fields such as flexoelectric fields.

  13. Energy landscape scheme for an intuitive understanding of complex domain dynamics in ferroelectric thin films

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heon Kim, Tae; Yoon, Jong-Gul; Hyub Baek, Seung; Park, Woong-Kyu; Mo Yang, Sang; Yup Jang, Seung; Min, Taeyuun; Chung, Jin-Seok; Eom, Chang-Beom; Won Noh, Tae

    2015-07-01

    Fundamental understanding of domain dynamics in ferroic materials has been a longstanding issue because of its relevance to many systems and to the design of nanoscale domain-wall devices. Despite many theoretical and experimental studies, a full understanding of domain dynamics still remains incomplete, partly due to complex interactions between domain-walls and disorder. We report domain-shape-preserving deterministic domain-wall motion, which directly confirms microscopic return point memory, by observing domain-wall breathing motion in ferroelectric BiFeO3 thin film using stroboscopic piezoresponse force microscopy. Spatial energy landscape that provides new insights into domain dynamics is also mapped based on the breathing motion of domain walls. The evolution of complex domain structure can be understood by the process of occupying the lowest available energy states of polarization in the energy landscape which is determined by defect-induced internal fields. Our result highlights a pathway for the novel design of ferroelectric domain-wall devices through the engineering of energy landscape using defect-induced internal fields such as flexoelectric fields.

  14. Treatment of complex biological mixtures with pulsed electric fields An energy transfer characterization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schrive, Luc

    2004-01-01

    Sewage sludge from waste water treatment plants is a complex biological mixture and a problematic by-product because of valorisation restrictions. In order to limit its production, pulsed electric fields (PEF) were studied because of their biological effects and their potentially physico-chemical action. This work demonstrated a paradoxical phenomenon: cell lysis triggered a respirometric activation followed by a delayed lethality. This phenomenon was related to the leakage of internal compounds which were immediately bio-assimilated. At high energy expense, the plasmic membrane permeabilization led to cell death. Practically, with the technical configuration of the equipment, no hydrolysis was detected. This limitation decreases the interest for excess sludge reduction, but for the same reason, PEF cold sterilization technique can be assessed as a promising process. The representation of the electric energy transfer from electrodes to cell was exchanged by the study of mass transfer from the biological cell to the surrounding media under an electromotive force. Thus, the survival rate was modelled by a Sherwood number taking account of electrical, biological and hydraulic parameters. (author) [fr

  15. Simulation-based education: understanding the socio-cultural complexity of a surgical training 'boot camp'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cleland, Jennifer; Walker, Kenneth G; Gale, Michael; Nicol, Laura G

    2016-08-01

    The focus of simulation-based education (SBE) research has been limited to outcome and effectiveness studies. The effect of social and cultural influences on SBE is unclear and empirical work is lacking. Our objective in this study was to explore and understand the complexity of context and social factors at a surgical boot camp (BC). A rapid ethnographic study, employing the theoretical lenses of complexity and activity theory and Bourdieu's concept of 'capital', to better understand the socio-cultural influences acting upon, and during, two surgical BCs, and their implications for SBE. Over two 4-day BCs held in Scotland, UK, an observer and two preceptors conducted 81 hours of observations, 14 field interviews and 11 formal interviews with faculty members (n = 10, including the lead faculty member, session leaders and junior faculty members) and participants (n = 19 core surgical trainees and early-stage residents). Data collection and inductive analysis for emergent themes proceeded iteratively. This paper focuses on three analytical themes. First, the complexity of the surgical training system and wider health care education context, and how this influenced the development of the BC. Second, participants' views of the BC as a vehicle not just for learning skills but for gaining 'insider information' on how best to progress in surgical training. Finally, the explicit aim of faculty members to use the Scottish Surgical Bootcamp to welcome trainees and residents into the world of surgery, and how this occurred. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first empirical study of a surgical BC that takes a socio-cultural approach to exploring and understanding context, complexities, uncertainties and learning associated with one example of SBE. Our findings suggest that a BC is as much about social and cultural processes as it is about individual, cognitive and acquisitive learning. Acknowledging this explicitly will help those planning similar enterprises and

  16. Application of Biologically Based Lumping To Investigate the Toxicokinetic Interactions of a Complex Gasoline Mixture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jasper, Micah N; Martin, Sheppard A; Oshiro, Wendy M; Ford, Jermaine; Bushnell, Philip J; El-Masri, Hisham

    2016-03-15

    People are often exposed to complex mixtures of environmental chemicals such as gasoline, tobacco smoke, water contaminants, or food additives. We developed an approach that applies chemical lumping methods to complex mixtures, in this case gasoline, based on biologically relevant parameters used in physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling. Inhalation exposures were performed with rats to evaluate the performance of our PBPK model and chemical lumping method. There were 109 chemicals identified and quantified in the vapor in the chamber. The time-course toxicokinetic profiles of 10 target chemicals were also determined from blood samples collected during and following the in vivo experiments. A general PBPK model was used to compare the experimental data to the simulated values of blood concentration for 10 target chemicals with various numbers of lumps, iteratively increasing from 0 to 99. Large reductions in simulation error were gained by incorporating enzymatic chemical interactions, in comparison to simulating the individual chemicals separately. The error was further reduced by lumping the 99 nontarget chemicals. The same biologically based lumping approach can be used to simplify any complex mixture with tens, hundreds, or thousands of constituents.

  17. Understanding the Interaction of Peptides and Proteins with Abiotic Surfaces: Towards Water-Free Biologics

    Science.gov (United States)

    2018-02-03

    engineering , materials, spectroscopy, laser techniques, chemical biology, computational chemistry, and nanoscience and nanotechnology . We have regular bi...water-free biologics” based on engineered abiotic/biotic interfaces. Using knowledge gained from studies in Aim 1, we aim to a) engineer peptides...universities. The research is highly interdisciplinary, covering many research areas in biology, chemistry, engineering , and physics. The

  18. Monitoring prion protein expression in complex biological samples by SERS for diagnostic applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Manno, D; Filippo, E; Fiore, R; Serra, A; Urso, E; Rizzello, A; Maffia, M

    2010-01-01

    Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) allows a new insight into the analysis of cell physiology. In this work, the difficulty of producing suitable substrates that, besides permitting the amplification of the Raman signal, do not interact with the biological material causing alteration, has been overcome by a combined method of hydrothermal green synthesis and thermal annealing. The SERS analysis of the cell membrane has been performed with special attention to the cellular prion protein PrP C . In addition, SERS has also been used to reveal the prion protein-Cu(II) interaction in four different cell models (B104, SH-SY5Y, GN11, HeLa), expressing PrP C at different levels. A significant implication of the current work consists of the intriguing possibility of revealing and quantifying prion protein expression in complex biological samples by a cheap SERS-based method, replacing the expensive and time-consuming immuno-assay systems commonly employed.

  19. Synthesis, Spectroscopic Characterization and Biological Activities of Transition Metal Complexes Derived from a Tridentate Schiff Base

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Senthil Kumaran

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A new series of Cu (II, Ni (II, Co (II and Zn (II complexes have been synthesized from the Schiff base derived from 4-hydroxy-3-methoxybenzylidine-4-aminoantipyrine and 2-aminophenol. The structural features have been determined from their elemental analysis, magnetic susceptibility, molar conductance, Mass, IR, UV-Vis, 1H-NMR, 13C-NMR and ESR spectral studies. The redox behavior of the copper complex has been studied by cyclic voltammetry. The data confirm that the complexes have composition of ML2 type. The electronic absorption spectral data of the complexes propose an octahedral geometry around the central metal ion. All the metal complexes with DNA structure were guided by the presence of inter-molecular C–H⋯O and C–H⋯N hydrogen bonds. The biological activity of the synthesized compounds were tested against the bacterial species such as Bacillus subtilis, Staphylococcus aureus, Proteus vulgaris and fungal species such as Candida albicans by the well-diffusion method.

  20. Synthesis, characterization and biological activities of semicarbazones and their copper complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatachalam, Taracad K; Bernhardt, Paul V; Noble, Chris J; Fletcher, Nicholas; Pierens, Gregory K; Thurecht, Kris J; Reutens, David C

    2016-09-01

    Substituted semicarbazones/thiosemicarbazones and their copper complexes have been prepared and several single crystal structures examined. The copper complexes of these semicarbazone/thiosemicarbazones were prepared and several crystal structures examined. The single crystal X-ray structure of the pyridyl-substituted semicarbazone showed two types of copper complexes, a monomer and a dimer. We also found that the p-nitrophenyl semicarbazone formed a conventional 'magic lantern' acetate-bridged dimer. Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) of several of the copper complexes was consistent with the results of single crystal X-ray crystallography. The EPR spectra of the p-nitrophenyl semicarbazone copper complex in dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO) showed the presence of two species, confirming the structural information. Since thiosemicarbazones and semicarbazones have been reported to exhibit anticancer activity, we examined the anticancer activity of several of the derivatives reported in the present study and interestingly only the thiosemicarbazone showed activity while the semicarbazones were not active indicating that introduction of sulphur atom alters the biological profile of these thiosemicarbazones. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Spectroscopic, thermal, catalytic and biological studies of Cu(II) azo dye complexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Sonbati, A. Z.; Diab, M. A.; El-Bindary, A. A.; Shoair, A. F.; Hussein, M. A.; El-Boz, R. A.

    2017-08-01

    New complexes of copper(II) with azo compounds of 5-amino-2-(aryl diazenyl)phenol (HLn) are prepared and investigated by elemental analyses, molar conductance, IR, 1H NMR, UV-Visible, mass, ESR spectra, magnetic susceptibility measurements and thermal analyses. The complexes have a square planar structure and general formula [Cu(Ln)(OAc)]H2O. Study the catalytic activities of Cu(II) complexes toward oxidation of benzyl alcohol derivatives to carbonyl compounds were tested using H2O2 as the oxidant. The intrinsic binding constants (Kb) of the ligands (HLn) and Cu(II) complexes (1-4) with CT-DNA are determined. The formed compounds have been tested for biological activity of antioxidants, antibacterial against Gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus) and Gram-negative (Escherichia coli) bacteria and yeast Candida albicans. Antibiotic (Ampicillin) and antifungal against (Colitrimazole) and cytotoxic compounds HL1, HL2, HL3 and complex (1) showed moderate to good activity against S. aureus, E. coli and Candida albicans, and also to be moderate on antioxidants and toxic substances. Molecular docking is used to predict the binding between the ligands with the receptor of breast cancer (2a91).

  2. Understanding and quantifying cognitive complexity level in mathematical problem solving items

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SUSAN E. EMBRETSON

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available The linear logistic test model (LLTM; Fischer, 1973 has been applied to a wide variety of new tests. When the LLTM application involves item complexity variables that are both theoretically interesting and empirically supported, several advantages can result. These advantages include elaborating construct validity at the item level, defining variables for test design, predicting parameters of new items, item banking by sources of complexity and providing a basis for item design and item generation. However, despite the many advantages of applying LLTM to test items, it has been applied less often to understand the sources of complexity for large-scale operational test items. Instead, previously calibrated item parameters are modeled using regression techniques because raw item response data often cannot be made available. In the current study, both LLTM and regression modeling are applied to mathematical problem solving items from a widely used test. The findings from the two methods are compared and contrasted for their implications for continued development of ability and achievement tests based on mathematical problem solving items.

  3. Using an adaptive expertise lens to understand the quality of teachers' classroom implementation of computer-supported complex systems curricula in high school science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Susan A.; Koehler-Yom, Jessica; Anderson, Emma; Lin, Joyce; Klopfer, Eric

    2015-05-01

    Background: This exploratory study is part of a larger-scale research project aimed at building theoretical and practical knowledge of complex systems in students and teachers with the goal of improving high school biology learning through professional development and a classroom intervention. Purpose: We propose a model of adaptive expertise to better understand teachers' classroom practices as they attempt to navigate myriad variables in the implementation of biology units that include working with computer simulations, and learning about and teaching through complex systems ideas. Sample: Research participants were three high school biology teachers, two females and one male, ranging in teaching experience from six to 16 years. Their teaching contexts also ranged in student achievement from 14-47% advanced science proficiency. Design and methods: We used a holistic multiple case study methodology and collected data during the 2011-2012 school year. Data sources include classroom observations, teacher and student surveys, and interviews. Data analyses and trustworthiness measures were conducted through qualitative mining of data sources and triangulation of findings. Results: We illustrate the characteristics of adaptive expertise of more or less successful teaching and learning when implementing complex systems curricula. We also demonstrate differences between case study teachers in terms of particular variables associated with adaptive expertise. Conclusions: This research contributes to scholarship on practices and professional development needed to better support teachers to teach through a complex systems pedagogical and curricular approach.

  4. How to Generate Understanding of the Scientific Process in Introductory Biology: A Student-Designed Laboratory Exercise on Yeast Fermentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Linda T.; Bell, Rebekah P.

    2004-01-01

    Heavy faculty teaching loads and limited funds biology teachers designed certain objectives in order to increase the understandability of the subject matter of the laboratory exercises they write. In relation to these objectives an old "cookbook" laboratory exercise on yeast fermentation is introduced which involve students asking questions,…

  5. The Crucible simulation: Behavioral simulation improves clinical leadership skills and understanding of complex health policy change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Daniel; Vlaev, Ivo; McMahon, Laurie; Harvey, Sarah; Mitchell, Andy; Borovoi, Leah; Darzi, Ara

    2017-05-11

    The Health and Social Care Act 2012 represents the most complex National Health Service reforms in history. High-quality clinical leadership is important for successful implementation of health service reform. However, little is known about the effectiveness of current leadership training. This study describes the use of a behavioral simulation to improve the knowledge and leadership of a cohort of medical doctors expected to take leadership roles in the National Health Service. A day-long behavioral simulation (The Crucible) was developed and run based on a fictitious but realistic health economy. Participants completed pre- and postsimulation questionnaires generating qualitative and quantitative data. Leadership skills, knowledge, and behavior change processes described by the "theory of planned behavior" were self-assessed pre- and postsimulation. Sixty-nine medical doctors attended. Participants deemed the simulation immersive and relevant. Significant improvements were shown in perceived knowledge, capability, attitudes, subjective norms, intentions, and leadership competency following the program. Nearly one third of participants reported that they had implemented knowledge and skills from the simulation into practice within 4 weeks. This study systematically demonstrates the effectiveness of behavioral simulation for clinical management training and understanding of health policy reform. Potential future uses and strategies for analysis are discussed. High-quality care requires understanding of health systems and strong leadership. Policymakers should consider the use of behavioral simulation to improve understanding of health service reform and development of leadership skills in clinicians, who readily adopt skills from simulation into everyday practice.

  6. Forty Years of Ebolavirus Molecular Biology: Understanding a Novel Disease Agent Through the Development and Application of New Technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groseth, Allison; Hoenen, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Molecular biology is a broad discipline that seeks to understand biological phenomena at a molecular level, and achieves this through the study of DNA, RNA, proteins, and/or other macromolecules (e.g., those involved in the modification of these substrates). Consequently, it relies on the availability of a wide variety of methods that deal with the collection, preservation, inactivation, separation, manipulation, imaging, and analysis of these molecules. As such the state of the art in the field of ebolavirus molecular biology research (and that of all other viruses) is largely intertwined with, if not driven by, advancements in the technical methodologies available for these kinds of studies. Here we review of the current state of our knowledge regarding ebolavirus biology and emphasize the associated methods that made these discoveries possible.

  7. Repair Responses of Dental Pulp to Tooth Injury and Biological Properties of Dentin-pulp Complex

    OpenAIRE

    大島, 勇人; Ohshima, Hayato

    2004-01-01

    Regeneration-the creation of a new tissue after the original one has been lost-is the fundamental biological capability in an organism. Numerous organs are considered to contain stem cells referred to as adult stem cells, even in the adult. Adult stem cells can give rise to a limited set of adult tissue types. In the field of clinical dentistry, it is well-known that the dentin-pulp complex is capable of repair after tooth injuries such as tooth replantation/transplantation or restorative pro...

  8. The relationship between biology teachers' understanding of the nature of science and the understanding and acceptance of the theory of evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cofré, Hernán; Cuevas, Emilia; Becerra, Beatriz

    2017-11-01

    Despite the importance of the theory of evolution (TE) to scientific knowledge, a number of misconceptions continue to be found among biology teachers. In this context, the first objective of this study was to identify the impact of professional development programme (PDP) on teachers' understanding of nature of science (NOS) and evolution and on the acceptance of this theory. Its second objective was to study the relationship among these variables. Three instruments were used to quantify these variables: the Views of the Nature of Science Version D (VNOS D+), the Assessing Contextual Reasoning about Natural Selection (ACORN), and the Measure of Acceptance of Theory of Evolution (MATE). The results indicate that the PDP had a positive impact on teachers, significantly improving their understanding of the NOS and natural selection, as well as their acceptance of the TE. Furthermore, a positive correlation between the understanding of the NOS obtained by teachers in the first part of the PDP and the understanding and acceptance of evolution that these teachers showed at the end of the programme was determined. However, no relationship between an understanding of the NOS and gains in the understanding and acceptance of evolution was found.

  9. PeTTSy: a computational tool for perturbation analysis of complex systems biology models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domijan, Mirela; Brown, Paul E; Shulgin, Boris V; Rand, David A

    2016-03-10

    Over the last decade sensitivity analysis techniques have been shown to be very useful to analyse complex and high dimensional Systems Biology models. However, many of the currently available toolboxes have either used parameter sampling, been focused on a restricted set of model observables of interest, studied optimisation of a objective function, or have not dealt with multiple simultaneous model parameter changes where the changes can be permanent or temporary. Here we introduce our new, freely downloadable toolbox, PeTTSy (Perturbation Theory Toolbox for Systems). PeTTSy is a package for MATLAB which implements a wide array of techniques for the perturbation theory and sensitivity analysis of large and complex ordinary differential equation (ODE) based models. PeTTSy is a comprehensive modelling framework that introduces a number of new approaches and that fully addresses analysis of oscillatory systems. It examines sensitivity analysis of the models to perturbations of parameters, where the perturbation timing, strength, length and overall shape can be controlled by the user. This can be done in a system-global setting, namely, the user can determine how many parameters to perturb, by how much and for how long. PeTTSy also offers the user the ability to explore the effect of the parameter perturbations on many different types of outputs: period, phase (timing of peak) and model solutions. PeTTSy can be employed on a wide range of mathematical models including free-running and forced oscillators and signalling systems. To enable experimental optimisation using the Fisher Information Matrix it efficiently allows one to combine multiple variants of a model (i.e. a model with multiple experimental conditions) in order to determine the value of new experiments. It is especially useful in the analysis of large and complex models involving many variables and parameters. PeTTSy is a comprehensive tool for analysing large and complex models of regulatory and

  10. Assessing Students' Understandings of Biological Models and Their Use in Science to Evaluate a Theoretical Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grünkorn, Juliane; Upmeier zu Belzen, Annette; Krüger, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    Research in the field of students' understandings of models and their use in science describes different frameworks concerning these understandings. Currently, there is no conjoint framework that combines these structures and so far, no investigation has focused on whether it reflects students' understandings sufficiently (empirical evaluation).…

  11. Understanding Global Change (UGC) as a Unifying Conceptual Framework for Teaching Ecology: Using UGC in a High School Biology Program to Integrate Earth Science and Biology, and to Demonstrate the Value of Modeling Global Systems in Promoting Conceptual Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, J.; Bean, J. R.

    2017-12-01

    Global change science is ideal for NGSS-informed teaching, but presents a serious challenge to K-12 educators because it is complex and interdisciplinary- combining earth science, biology, chemistry, and physics. Global systems are themselves complex. Adding anthropogenic influences on those systems creates a formidable list of topics - greenhouse effect, climate change, nitrogen enrichment, introduced species, land-use change among them - which are often presented as a disconnected "laundry list" of "facts." This complexity, combined with public and mass-media scientific illiteracy, leaves global change science vulnerable to misrepresentation and politicization, creating additional challenges to teachers in public schools. Ample stand-alone, one-off, online resources, many of them excellent, are (to date) underutilized by teachers in the high school science course taken by most students: biology. The Understanding Global Change project (UGC) from the UC Berkeley Museum of Paleontology has created a conceptual framework that organizes, connects, and explains global systems, human and non-human drivers of change in those systems, and measurable changes in those systems. This organization and framework employ core ideas, crosscutting concepts, structure/function relationships, and system models in a unique format that facilitates authentic understanding, rather than memorization. This system serves as an organizing framework for the entire ecology unit of a forthcoming mainstream high school biology program. The UGC system model is introduced up front with its core informational graphic. The model is elaborated, step by step, by adding concepts and processes as they are introduced and explained in each chapter. The informational graphic is thus used in several ways: to organize material as it is presented, to summarize topics in each chapter and put them in perspective, and for review and critical thinking exercises that supplement the usual end-of-chapter lists of

  12. Biological properties of novel ruthenium- and osmium-nitrosyl complexes with azole heterocycles

    KAUST Repository

    Novak, Maria S.; Bü chel, Gabriel E.; Keppler, Bernhard K.; Jakupec, Michael A.

    2016-01-01

    Since the discovery that nitric oxide (NO) is a physiologically relevant molecule, there has been great interest in the use of metal nitrosyl compounds as antitumor pharmaceuticals. Particularly interesting are those complexes which can deliver NO to biological targets. Ruthenium- and osmium-based compounds offer lower toxicity compared to other metals and show different mechanisms of action as well as different spectra of activity compared to platinum-based drugs. Novel ruthenium- and osmium-nitrosyl complexes with azole heterocycles were studied to elucidate their cytotoxicity and possible interactions with DNA. Apoptosis induction, changes of mitochondrial transmembrane potential and possible formation of reactive oxygen species were investigated as indicators of NO-mediated damage by flow cytometry. Results suggest that ruthenium- and osmium-nitrosyl complexes with the general formula (indazolium)[cis/trans-MCl4(NO)(1H-indazole)] have pronounced cytotoxic potency in cancer cell lines. Especially the more potent ruthenium complexes strongly induce apoptosis associated with depolarization of mitochondrial membranes, and elevated reactive oxygen species levels. Furthermore, a slight yet not unequivocal trend to accumulation of intracellular cyclic guanosine monophosphate attributable to NO-mediated effects was observed.

  13. Biological properties of novel ruthenium- and osmium-nitrosyl complexes with azole heterocycles

    KAUST Repository

    Novak, Maria S.

    2016-03-09

    Since the discovery that nitric oxide (NO) is a physiologically relevant molecule, there has been great interest in the use of metal nitrosyl compounds as antitumor pharmaceuticals. Particularly interesting are those complexes which can deliver NO to biological targets. Ruthenium- and osmium-based compounds offer lower toxicity compared to other metals and show different mechanisms of action as well as different spectra of activity compared to platinum-based drugs. Novel ruthenium- and osmium-nitrosyl complexes with azole heterocycles were studied to elucidate their cytotoxicity and possible interactions with DNA. Apoptosis induction, changes of mitochondrial transmembrane potential and possible formation of reactive oxygen species were investigated as indicators of NO-mediated damage by flow cytometry. Results suggest that ruthenium- and osmium-nitrosyl complexes with the general formula (indazolium)[cis/trans-MCl4(NO)(1H-indazole)] have pronounced cytotoxic potency in cancer cell lines. Especially the more potent ruthenium complexes strongly induce apoptosis associated with depolarization of mitochondrial membranes, and elevated reactive oxygen species levels. Furthermore, a slight yet not unequivocal trend to accumulation of intracellular cyclic guanosine monophosphate attributable to NO-mediated effects was observed.

  14. Synthesis, characterization and biological assay of Salicylaldehyde Schiff base Cu(II) complexes and their precursors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iftikhar, Bushra; Javed, Kanwal; Khan, Muhammad Saif Ullah; Akhter, Zareen; Mirza, Bushra; Mckee, Vickie

    2018-03-01

    Three new Schiff base ligands were synthesized by the reaction of Salicylaldehyde with semi-aromatic diamines, prepared by the reduction of corresponding dinitro-compounds, and were further used for the formation of complexes with Cu(II) metal ion. The structural features of the synthesized compounds were confirmed by their physical properties and infrared, electronic and NMR spectroscopic techniques. The studies revealed that the synthesized Schiff bases existed as tetradentate ligands and bonded to the metal ion through the phenolic oxygen and azomethine nitrogen. One of the dinitro precursors was also analyzed by single crystal X-ray crystallography, which showed that it crystallizes in monoclinic system with space group P2/n. The thermal behavior of the Cu(II) complexes was determined by thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and kinetic parameters were evaluated from the data. Schiff base ligands, their precursors and metal complexes were also screened for antibacterial, antifungal, antitumor, Brine shrimp lethality, DPPH free radical scavenging and DNA damage assays. The results of these analyses indicated the substantial potential of the synthesized Schiff bases, their precursors and Cu(II) complexes in biological field as future drugs.

  15. Efficient sample preparation from complex biological samples using a sliding lid for immobilized droplet extractions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casavant, Benjamin P; Guckenberger, David J; Beebe, David J; Berry, Scott M

    2014-07-01

    Sample preparation is a major bottleneck in many biological processes. Paramagnetic particles (PMPs) are a ubiquitous method for isolating analytes of interest from biological samples and are used for their ability to thoroughly sample a solution and be easily collected with a magnet. There are three main methods by which PMPs are used for sample preparation: (1) removal of fluid from the analyte-bound PMPs, (2) removal of analyte-bound PMPs from the solution, and (3) removal of the substrate (with immobilized analyte-bound PMPs). In this paper, we explore the third and least studied method for PMP-based sample preparation using a platform termed Sliding Lid for Immobilized Droplet Extractions (SLIDE). SLIDE leverages principles of surface tension and patterned hydrophobicity to create a simple-to-operate platform for sample isolation (cells, DNA, RNA, protein) and preparation (cell staining) without the need for time-intensive wash steps, use of immiscible fluids, or precise pinning geometries. Compared to other standard isolation protocols using PMPs, SLIDE is able to perform rapid sample preparation with low (0.6%) carryover of contaminants from the original sample. The natural recirculation occurring within the pinned droplets of SLIDE make possible the performance of multistep cell staining protocols within the SLIDE by simply resting the lid over the various sample droplets. SLIDE demonstrates a simple easy to use platform for sample preparation on a range of complex biological samples.

  16. Modelling and Simulating Complex Systems in Biology: introducing NetBioDyn : A Pedagogical and Intuitive Agent-Based Software

    OpenAIRE

    Ballet, Pascal; Rivière, Jérémy; Pothet, Alain; Théron, Michaël; Pichavant, Karine; Abautret, Frank; Fronville, Alexandra; Rodin, Vincent

    2017-01-01

    International audience; Modelling and teaching complex biological systems is a difficult process. Multi-Agent Based Simulations (MABS) have proved to be an appropriate approach both in research and education when dealing with such systems including emergent, self-organizing phenomena. This chapter presents NetBioDyn, an original software aimed at biologists (students, teachers, researchers) to easily build and simulate complex biological mechanisms observed in multicellular and molecular syst...

  17. Understanding coral reefs as complex systems: degradation and prospects for recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raymond T. Dizon

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available The present century is witness to unprecedented levels of coral reef degradation worldwide. Current understanding based on traditional ideas is unlikely to capture adequately the dynamics of phenomena accompanying this trend. In this regard, the ideas of complexity are reviewed. Some applications to coral reefs as complex systems have already been discussed in the literature although further progress is warranted as the search for new and more effective management tools continues, and the direction towards more holistic, integrative and large scale approaches gains wider acceptance. We distinguish between the concepts of robustness and resilience in the face of disturbance, highlight the various mechanisms that foster these stability properties and provide some coral reef examples. We identify some of the driving forces behind succession that are critical for community assembly and possible reef recovery. Finally, we consider how self-organization arises out of apparently random and chaotic processes and interactions to exhibit certain regularities and patterns especially when moving up on the scale of space and/or time.

  18. Systematic metabolite annotation and identification in complex biological extracts : combining robust mass spectrometry fragmentation and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hooft, van der J.J.J.

    2012-01-01

    Detailed knowledge of the chemical content of organisms, organs, tissues, and cells is needed to fully characterize complex biological systems. The high chemical variety of compounds present in biological systems is illustrated by the presence of a large variety of compounds, ranging from apolar

  19. Y-12 National Security Complex Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program 2007 Calendar Yeare Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peterson, M.J.; Greeley, M. S. Jr.; Morris, G. W.; Roy, W. K.; Ryan, M. G.; Smith, J. G.; Southworth, G. R.

    2008-07-01

    The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued for the Oak Ridge Y-12 National Security Complex (Y-12 Complex) which became effective May 1, 2006, continued a requirement for a Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP). The BMAP was originally developed in 1985 to demonstrate that the effluent limitations established for the Y-12 Complex protected the classified uses of the receiving stream (East Fork Poplar Creek: EFPC), in particular, the growth and propagation of aquatic life (Loar et al. 1989). The objectives of the current BMAP are similar, specifically to assess stream ecological conditions relative to regulatory limits and criteria, to assess ecological impacts as well as recovery in response to Y-12 operations, and to investigate the causes of continuing impacts. The BMAP consists of three tasks that reflect complementary approaches to evaluating the effects of the Y-12 Complex discharges on the biotic integrity of EFPC. These tasks include: (1) bioaccumulation monitoring, (2) benthic macroinvertebrate community monitoring, and (3) fish community monitoring. As required by the NPDES permit, the BMAP benthic macroinvertebrate community monitoring task includes studies to annually evaluate the receiving stream's biological integrity in comparison to TN Water Quality Criteria. BMAP monitoring is currently being conducted at five primary EFPC sites, although sites may be excluded or added depending upon the specific objectives of the various tasks. Criteria used in selecting the sites include: (1) location of sampling sites used in other studies, (2) known or suspected sources of downstream impacts, (3) proximity to U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) boundaries, (4) appropriate habitat distribution, and (5) access. The primary sampling sites include upper EFPC at kilometers (EFKs) 24.4 and 23.4 [upstream and downstream of Lake Reality (LR) respectively]; EFK 18.7 (also EFK 18.2 and 19), located

  20. Advances in the understanding of the BBSome complex structure and function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hernandez-Hernandez V

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Victor Hernandez-Hernandez, Dagan JenkinsGenetics and Genomic Medicine Programme, UCL Institute of Child Health, London, UKAbstract: Bardet–Biedl syndrome (BBS is an autosomal recessive condition characterized by important clinical features, including obesity, blindness, renal cystic disease, and intellectual disability. BBS is caused by mutations in >20 genes, a subset of which form the so-called BBSome. The BBSome is a complex that coats intracellular vesicles and interacts with key proteins, such as small GTPases, that regulate the trafficking of these vesicles to the base of cilia. Cilia are microtubular protusions present on the surface of most cells that are defective in a key group of disorders known as ciliopathies, of which BBS is one. BBSome components particularly localize to the basal body of cilia, and also centrosomes, where they interact with pericentriolar material proteins that regulate their function. The BBSome also facilitates the transport of key cargo within cilia by acting as an adaptor protein for intraflagellar transport complexes, and as such BBS mutations lead to a variety of functional defects in cilia in a tissue- and cell-type-specific manner. This might include defects in photoreceptor trafficking linked to the connecting cilium, abnormal hedgehog signaling within bone, and aberrant calcium signaling in response to fluid flow along renal tubules, although the precise mechanisms are still not completely understood. Taken together, the BBSome is an important complex that may be targeted for treatment of a variety of common and important disorders, and understanding the precise function of the BBSome will be essential to capitalize on this translationally.Keywords: retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator, polycystin, disrupted in schizophrenia 1, Hedgehog signaling, calcium signaling, photoreceptors

  1. Understanding Student Cognition about Complex Earth System Processes Related to Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNeal, K. S.; Libarkin, J.; Ledley, T. S.; Dutta, S.; Templeton, M. C.; Geroux, J.; Blakeney, G. A.

    2011-12-01

    The Earth's climate system includes complex behavior and interconnections with other Earth spheres that present challenges to student learning. To better understand these unique challenges, we have conducted experiments with high-school and introductory level college students to determine how information pertaining to the connections between the Earth's atmospheric system and the other Earth spheres (e.g., hydrosphere and cryosphere) are processed. Specifically, we include psychomotor tests (e.g., eye-tracking) and open-ended questionnaires in this research study, where participants were provided scientific images of the Earth (e.g., global precipitation and ocean and atmospheric currents), eye-tracked, and asked to provide causal or relational explanations about the viewed images. In addition, the students engaged in on-line modules (http://serc.carleton.edu/eslabs/climate/index.html) focused on Earth system science as training activities to address potential cognitive barriers. The developed modules included interactive media, hands-on lessons, links to outside resources, and formative assessment questions to promote a supportive and data-rich learning environment. Student eye movements were tracked during engagement with the materials to determine the role of perception and attention on understanding. Students also completed a conceptual questionnaire pre-post to determine if these on-line curriculum materials assisted in their development of connections between Earth's atmospheric system and the other Earth systems. The pre-post results of students' thinking about climate change concepts, as well as eye-tracking results, will be presented.

  2. The Effects of Case-Based Instruction on Undergraduate Biology Students' Understanding of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burniston, Amy Lucinda

    Undergraduate science education is currently seeing a dramatic pedagogical push towards teaching the philosophies underpinning science as well as an increase in strategies that employ active learning. Many active learning strategies stem from constructivist ideals and have been shown to affect a student's understanding of how science operates and its impact on society- commonly referred to as the nature of science (NOS). One particular constructivist teaching strategy, case-based instruction (CBI), has been recommended by researchers and science education reformists as an effective instructional strategy for teaching NOS. Furthermore, when coupled with explicit-reflective instruction, CBI has been found to significantly increasing understanding of NOS in elementary and secondary students. However, few studies aimed their research on CBI and NOS towards higher education. Thus, this study uses a quasi-experimental, nonequivalent group design to study the effects of CBI on undergraduate science students understandings of NOS. Undergraduate biology student's understanding of NOS were assessed using the Views of Science Education (VOSE) instrument pre and post CBI intervention in Cellular and Molecular Biology and Human Anatomy and Physiology II. Data analysis indicated statistically significant differences between students NOS scores in experimental versus control sections for both courses, with experimental groups obtaining higher posttest scores. The results of this study indicate that undergraduate male and female students have similarly poor understandings of NOS and the use of historical case based instruction can be used as a means to increase undergraduate understanding of NOS.

  3. Attraction Basins as Gauges of Robustness against Boundary Conditions in Biological Complex Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demongeot, Jacques; Goles, Eric; Morvan, Michel; Noual, Mathilde; Sené, Sylvain

    2010-01-01

    One fundamental concept in the context of biological systems on which researches have flourished in the past decade is that of the apparent robustness of these systems, i.e., their ability to resist to perturbations or constraints induced by external or boundary elements such as electromagnetic fields acting on neural networks, micro-RNAs acting on genetic networks and even hormone flows acting both on neural and genetic networks. Recent studies have shown the importance of addressing the question of the environmental robustness of biological networks such as neural and genetic networks. In some cases, external regulatory elements can be given a relevant formal representation by assimilating them to or modeling them by boundary conditions. This article presents a generic mathematical approach to understand the influence of boundary elements on the dynamics of regulation networks, considering their attraction basins as gauges of their robustness. The application of this method on a real genetic regulation network will point out a mathematical explanation of a biological phenomenon which has only been observed experimentally until now, namely the necessity of the presence of gibberellin for the flower of the plant Arabidopsis thaliana to develop normally. PMID:20700525

  4. Attraction basins as gauges of robustness against boundary conditions in biological complex systems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacques Demongeot

    Full Text Available One fundamental concept in the context of biological systems on which researches have flourished in the past decade is that of the apparent robustness of these systems, i.e., their ability to resist to perturbations or constraints induced by external or boundary elements such as electromagnetic fields acting on neural networks, micro-RNAs acting on genetic networks and even hormone flows acting both on neural and genetic networks. Recent studies have shown the importance of addressing the question of the environmental robustness of biological networks such as neural and genetic networks. In some cases, external regulatory elements can be given a relevant formal representation by assimilating them to or modeling them by boundary conditions. This article presents a generic mathematical approach to understand the influence of boundary elements on the dynamics of regulation networks, considering their attraction basins as gauges of their robustness. The application of this method on a real genetic regulation network will point out a mathematical explanation of a biological phenomenon which has only been observed experimentally until now, namely the necessity of the presence of gibberellin for the flower of the plant Arabidopsis thaliana to develop normally.

  5. Present Day Biology seen in the Looking Glass of Physics of Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuster, P.

    Darwin's theory of variation and selection in its simplest form is directly applicable to RNA evolution in vitro as well as to virus evolution, and it allows for quantitative predictions. Understanding evolution at the molecular level is ultimately related to the central paradigm of structural biology: sequence⇒ structure ⇒ function. We elaborate on the state of the art in modeling and understanding evolution of RNA driven by reproduction and mutation. The focus will be laid on the landscape concept—originally introduced by Sewall Wright—and its application to problems in biology. The relation between genotypes and phenotypes is the result of two consecutive mappings from a space of genotypes called sequence space onto a space of phenotypes or structures, and fitness is the result of a mapping from phenotype space into non-negative real numbers. Realistic landscapes as derived from folding of RNA sequences into structures are characterized by two properties: (i) they are rugged in the sense that sequences lying nearby in sequence space may have very different fitness values and (ii) they are characterized by an appreciable degree of neutrality implying that a certain fraction of genotypes and/or phenotypes cannot be distinguished in the selection process. Evolutionary dynamics on realistic landscapes will be studied as a function of the mutation rate, and the role of neutrality in the selection process will be discussed.

  6. Dose prescription complexity versus tumor control probability in biologically conformal radiotherapy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    South, C. P.; Evans, P. M.; Partridge, M.

    2009-01-01

    The technical feasibility and potential benefits of voxel-based nonuniform dose prescriptions for biologically heterogeneous tumors have been widely demonstrated. In some cases, an ''ideal'' dose prescription has been generated by individualizing the dose to every voxel within the target, but often this voxel-based prescription has been discretized into a small number of compartments. The number of dose levels utilized and the methods used for prescribing doses and assigning tumor voxels to different dose compartments have varied significantly. The authors present an investigation into the relationship between the complexity of the dose prescription and the tumor control probability (TCP) for a number of these methods. The linear quadratic model of cell killing was used in conjunction with a number of modeled tumors heterogeneous in clonogen density, oxygenation, or proliferation. Models based on simple mathematical functions, published biological data, and biological image data were investigated. Target voxels were assigned to dose compartments using (i) simple rules based on the initial biological distribution, (ii) iterative methods designed to maximize the achievable TCP, or (iii) methods based on an ideal dose prescription. The relative performance of the simple rules was found to depend on the form of heterogeneity of the tumor, while the iterative and ideal dose methods performed comparably for all models investigated. In all cases the maximum achievable TCP was approached within the first few (typically two to five) compartments. Results suggest that irrespective of the pattern of heterogeneity, the optimal dose prescription can be well approximated using only a few dose levels but only if both the compartment boundaries and prescribed dose levels are well chosen.

  7. Progress in the understanding and utilization of biologic response modifiers in the treatment of uveitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maleki, Arash; Meese, Halea; Sahawneh, Haitham; Foster, C Stephen

    2016-07-01

    Uveitis is the third most common cause of blindness in developed countries. Considering the systemic and local complications of long-term corticosteroid therapy and the intolerance due to side effects and ineffectiveness of conventional chemotherapy, use of biologic response modifiers is a reasonable alternative in the treatment of non-infectious uveitis and persistent uveitic macular edema. The majority of the evidence presented here comes from open uncontrolled analyses. Based on these studies, tumor necrosis factor alpha inhibitors, especially infliximab and adalimumab, have been shown to be effective in the treatment of non-infectious uveitis in numerous studies. More research is necessary, particularly multi-center randomized clinical trials, to address the choice of biologic response modifier agent and the length of treatment as we employ biologic response modifiers in different types of uveitis and persistent uveitic macular edema.

  8. Geometric triangular chiral hexagon crystal-like complexes organization in pathological tissues biological collision order.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jairo A Díaz

    Full Text Available The present study describes and documents self-assembly of geometric triangular chiral hexagon crystal like complex organizations (GTCHC in human pathological tissues. The authors have found this architectural geometric expression at macroscopic and microscopic levels mainly in cancer processes. This study is based essentially on macroscopic and histopathologic analyses of 3000 surgical specimens: 2600 inflammatory lesions and 400 malignant tumours. Geometric complexes identified photographically at macroscopic level were located in the gross surgical specimen, and these areas were carefully dissected. Samples were taken to carry out histologic analysis. Based on the hypothesis of a collision genesis mechanism and because it is difficult to carry out an appropriate methodological observation in biological systems, the authors designed a model base on other dynamic systems to obtain indirect information in which a strong white flash wave light discharge, generated by an electronic device, hits over the lines of electrical conductance structured in helicoidal pattern. In their experimental model, the authors were able to reproduce and to predict polarity, chirality, helicoid geometry, triangular and hexagonal clusters through electromagnetic sequential collisions. They determined that similar events among constituents of extracelular matrix which drive and produce piezoelectric activity are responsible for the genesis of GTCHC complexes in pathological tissues. This research suggests that molecular crystals represented by triangular chiral hexagons derived from a collision-attraction event against collagen type I fibrils emerge at microscopic and macroscopic scales presenting a lateral assembly of each side of hypertrophy helicoid fibers, that represent energy flow in cooperative hierarchically chiral electromagnetic interaction in pathological tissues and arises as a geometry of the equilibrium in perturbed biological systems. Further

  9. Geometric triangular chiral hexagon crystal-like complexes organization in pathological tissues biological collision order.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz, Jairo A; Jaramillo, Natalia A; Murillo, Mauricio F

    2007-12-12

    The present study describes and documents self-assembly of geometric triangular chiral hexagon crystal like complex organizations (GTCHC) in human pathological tissues. The authors have found this architectural geometric expression at macroscopic and microscopic levels mainly in cancer processes. This study is based essentially on macroscopic and histopathologic analyses of 3000 surgical specimens: 2600 inflammatory lesions and 400 malignant tumours. Geometric complexes identified photographically at macroscopic level were located in the gross surgical specimen, and these areas were carefully dissected. Samples were taken to carry out histologic analysis. Based on the hypothesis of a collision genesis mechanism and because it is difficult to carry out an appropriate methodological observation in biological systems, the authors designed a model base on other dynamic systems to obtain indirect information in which a strong white flash wave light discharge, generated by an electronic device, hits over the lines of electrical conductance structured in helicoidal pattern. In their experimental model, the authors were able to reproduce and to predict polarity, chirality, helicoid geometry, triangular and hexagonal clusters through electromagnetic sequential collisions. They determined that similar events among constituents of extracelular matrix which drive and produce piezoelectric activity are responsible for the genesis of GTCHC complexes in pathological tissues. This research suggests that molecular crystals represented by triangular chiral hexagons derived from a collision-attraction event against collagen type I fibrils emerge at microscopic and macroscopic scales presenting a lateral assembly of each side of hypertrophy helicoid fibers, that represent energy flow in cooperative hierarchically chiral electromagnetic interaction in pathological tissues and arises as a geometry of the equilibrium in perturbed biological systems. Further interdisciplinary studies must

  10. Biological evaluation of transdichloridoplatinum(II) complexes with 3- and 4-acetylpyridine in comparison to cisplatin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Filipovic, Lana; Arandelovic, Sandra; Gligorijevic, Nevenka; Krivokuca, Ana; Jankovic, Radmila; Srdic-Rajic, Tatjana; Rakic, Gordana; Tesic, Zivoslav; Radulovic, Sinisa

    2013-01-01

    In our previous study we reported the synthesis and cytotoxicity of two trans-platinum(II) complexes: trans-[PtCl 2 (3-acetylpyridine) 2 ] (1) and trans-[PtCl 2 (4-acetylpyridine) 2 ] (2), revealing significant cytotoxic potential of 2. In order to evaluate the mechanism underlying biological activity of both trans-Pt(II) isomers, comparative studies versus cisplatin were performed in HeLa, MRC-5 and MS1 cells. The cytotoxic activity of the investigated complexes was determined using SRB assay. The colagenolytic activity was determined using gelatin zymography, while the effect of platinum complexes on matrix metalloproteinases 2 and 9 mRNA expression was evaluated by quantitative real-time PCR. Apoptotic potential and cell cycle alterations were determined by FACS analyses. Western blot analysis was used to evaluate the effect on expression of DNA-repair enzyme ERCC1, and quantitative real-time PCR was used for the ERCC1 mRNA expression analysis. In vitro antiangiogenic potential was determined by tube formation assay. Platinum content in intracellular DNA and proteins was determined by inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry. Compound 2 displayed an apparent cytoselective profile, and flow cytometry analysis in HeLa cells indicated that 2 exerted antiproliferative effect through apoptosis induction, while 1 induced both apoptosis and necrosis. Action of 1 and 2, as analyzed by quantitative real-time PCR and Western blot, was associated with down-regulation of ERCC1. Both trans-complexes inhibited MMP-9 mRNA expression in HeLa, while 2 significantly abrogated in vitro tubulogenesis in MS1 cells. The ability of 2 to induce multiple and selective in vitro cytotoxic effects encourages further investigations of trans-platinum(II) complexes with substituted pyridines

  11. Carbon-water Cycling in the Critical Zone: Understanding Ecosystem Process Variability Across Complex Terrain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barnard, Holly [Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States); Brooks, Paul [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States)

    2016-06-16

    One of the largest knowledge gaps in environmental science is the ability to understand and predict how ecosystems will respond to future climate variability. The links between vegetation, hydrology, and climate that control carbon sequestration in plant biomass and soils remain poorly understood. Soil respiration is the second largest carbon flux of terrestrial ecosystems, yet there is no consensus on how respiration will change as water availability and temperature co-vary. To address this knowledge gap, we use the variation in soil development and topography across an elevation and climate gradient on the Front Range of Colorado to conduct a natural experiment that enables us to examine the co-evolution of soil carbon, vegetation, hydrology, and climate in an accessible field laboratory. The goal of this project is to further our ability to combine plant water availability, carbon flux and storage, and topographically driven hydrometrics into a watershed scale predictive model of carbon balance. We hypothesize: (i) landscape structure and hydrology are important controls on soil respiration as a result of spatial variability in both physical and biological drivers: (ii) variation in rates of soil respiration during the growing season is due to corresponding shifts in belowground carbon inputs from vegetation; and (iii) aboveground carbon storage (biomass) and species composition are directly correlated with soil moisture and therefore, can be directly related to subsurface drainage patterns.

  12. Bringing content understanding into usability testing in complex application domains—a case study in eHealth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Simon Bruntse; Rasmussen, Claire Kirchert; Frøkjær, Erik

    2017-01-01

    A usability evaluation technique, Cooperative Usability Testing with Questions of Understanding (CUT with QU) intended to illuminate users’ ability to understand the content information of an application is proposed. In complex application domains as for instance the eHealth domain, this issue...... of users’ content understanding is sometimes crucial, and thus should be carefully evaluated. Unfortunately, conventional usability evaluation techniques do not address challenges of content understanding. In a case study within eHealth, specifically the setting of a rehabilitation clinic involving...... the participation of four physiotherapists and four clients in a period of 3.5 months, it was demonstrated how CUT with QU can complement conventional usability testing and provide insight into users’ challenges with understanding of a new complex eHealth application. More experiments in other complex application...

  13. Biological Screening of Newly Synthesized BIAN N-Heterocyclic Gold Carbene Complexes in Zebrafish Embryos

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farooq, Muhammad; Abu Taha, Nael; Butorac, Rachel R.; Evans, Daniel Anthony; Elzatahry, Ahmed A.; Elsayed, Elsayed Ahmed; Wadaan, Mohammad A. M.; Al-Deyab, Salem S.; Cowley, Alan H.

    2015-01-01

    N-Heterocyclic carbene (NHC) metal complexes possess diverse biological activities but have yet to be extensively explored as potential chemotherapeutic agents. We have previously reported the synthesis of a new class of NHC metal complexes N-heterocyclic with acetate [IPr(BIAN)AuOAc] and chloride [IPr(BIAN)AuCl] ligands. In the experiments reported herein, the zebrafish embryos were exposed to serial dilutions of each of these complexes for 10–12 h. One hundred percent mortality was observed at concentrations ≥50 µM. At sub-lethal concentrations (10–30 µM), both compounds influenced zebrafish embryonic development. However, quite diverse categories of abnormalities were found in exposed embryos with each compound. Severe brain deformation and notochord degeneration were evident in the case of [IPr(BIAN)AuOAc]. The zebrafish embryos treated with [IPr(BIAN)AuCl] exhibited stunted growth and consequently had smaller body sizes. A depletion of 30%–40% glutathione was detected in the treated embryos, which could account for one of the possible mechanism of neurotoxicity. The fact that these compounds are capable of both affecting the growth and also compromising antioxidant systems by elevating intracellular ROS production implies that they could play an important role as a new breed of therapeutic molecules. PMID:26501273

  14. Improving off-line accelerated tryptic digestion. Towards fast-lane proteolysis of complex biological samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vukovic, Jadranka; Loftheim, Håvard; Winther, Bjørn; Reubsaet, J Léon E

    2008-06-27

    Off-line digestion of proteins using immobilized trypsin beads is studied with respect to the format of the digestion reactor, the digestion conditions, the comparison with in-solution digestion and its use in complex biological samples. The use of the filter vial as the most appropriate digestion reactor enables simple, efficient and easy-to-handle off-line digestion of the proteins on trypsin beads. It was shown that complex proteins like bovine serum albumin (BSA) need much longer time (89 min) and elevated temperature (37 degrees C) to be digested to an acceptable level compared to smaller proteins like cytochrome c (5 min, room temperature). Comparing the BSA digestion using immobilized trypsin beads with conventional in-solution digestion (overnight at 37 degrees C), it was shown that comparable results were obtained with respect to sequence coverage (>90%) and amount of missed cleavages (in both cases around 20 peptides with 1 or 2 missed cleavages were detected). However, the digestion using immobilized trypsin beads was considerable less time consuming. Good reproducibility and signal intensities were obtained for the digestion products of BSA in a complex urine sample. In addition to this, peptide products of proteins typically present in urine were identified.

  15. Systems Modelling and the Development of Coherent Understanding of Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhoeff, Roald P.; Waarlo, Arend Jan; Boersma, Kerst Th.

    2008-01-01

    This article reports on educational design research concerning a learning and teaching strategy for cell biology in upper-secondary education introducing "systems modelling" as a key competence. The strategy consists of four modelling phases in which students subsequently develop models of free-living cells, a general two-dimensional model of…

  16. Taiwan High School Biology Teachers' Acceptance and Understanding of Evolution and the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Li-Hua

    2015-01-01

    Evolution is the cornerstone of biological sciences, but anti-evolution teaching has become a global controversy since the introduction of evolutionary ideas into the United States high school science curricula in 1914. It is suggested that teachers' attitude toward and acceptance of the theory of evolution will influence their effect of teaching…

  17. Perceptual Influence of Ugandan Biology Students' Understanding of HIV/AIDS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutonyi, Harriet; Nashon, Samson; Nielsen, Wendy S.

    2010-01-01

    In Uganda, curbing the spread of HIV/AIDS has largely depended on public and private media messages about the disease. Media campaigns based on Uganda's cultural norms of communication are metaphorical, analogical and simile-like. The topic of HIV/AIDS has been introduced into the Senior Three (Grade 11) biology curriculum in Uganda. To what…

  18. Measurement issues associated with quantitative molecular biology analysis of complex food matrices for the detection of food fraud.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burns, Malcolm; Wiseman, Gordon; Knight, Angus; Bramley, Peter; Foster, Lucy; Rollinson, Sophie; Damant, Andrew; Primrose, Sandy

    2016-01-07

    Following a report on a significant amount of horse DNA being detected in a beef burger product on sale to the public at a UK supermarket in early 2013, the Elliott report was published in 2014 and contained a list of recommendations for helping ensure food integrity. One of the recommendations included improving laboratory testing capacity and capability to ensure a harmonised approach for testing for food authenticity. Molecular biologists have developed exquisitely sensitive methods based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or mass spectrometry for detecting the presence of particular nucleic acid or peptide/protein sequences. These methods have been shown to be specific and sensitive in terms of lower limits of applicability, but they are largely qualitative in nature. Historically, the conversion of these qualitative techniques into reliable quantitative methods has been beset with problems even when used on relatively simple sample matrices. When the methods are applied to complex sample matrices, as found in many foods, the problems are magnified resulting in a high measurement uncertainty associated with the result which may mean that the assay is not fit for purpose. However, recent advances in the technology and the understanding of molecular biology approaches have further given rise to the re-assessment of these methods for their quantitative potential. This review focuses on important issues for consideration when validating a molecular biology assay and the various factors that can impact on the measurement uncertainty of a result associated with molecular biology approaches used in detection of food fraud, with a particular focus on quantitative PCR-based and proteomics assays.

  19. Y-12 National Security Complex Biological Monitoring And Abatement Program 2008 Calendar Year Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peterson, M. J.; Greeley Jr., M. S.; Mathews, T. J.; Morris, G. W.; Roy, W. K.; Ryon, M. G.; Smith, J. G.; Southworth, G. R.

    2009-07-01

    The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued for the Oak Ridge Y-12 National Security Complex (Y-12 Complex) which became effective May 1, 2006, continued a requirement for a Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP). The BMAP was originally developed in 1985 to demonstrate that the effluent limitations established for the Y-12 Complex protected the classified uses of the receiving stream (East Fork Poplar Creek: EFPC), in particular, the growth and propagation of aquatic life (Loar et al. 1989). The objectives of the current BMAP are similar, specifically to assess stream ecological conditions relative to regulatory limits and criteria, to assess ecological impacts as well as recovery in response to Y-12 operations, and to investigate the causes of continuing impacts. The BMAP consists of three tasks that reflect complementary approaches to evaluating the effects of the Y-12 Complex discharges on the biotic integrity of EFPC. These tasks include: (1) bioaccumulation monitoring, (2) benthic macroinvertebrate community monitoring, and (3) fish community monitoring. As required by the NPDES permit, the BMAP benthic macroinvertebrate community monitoring task includes studies to annually evaluate the receiving stream's biological integrity in comparison to TN Water Quality Criteria. BMAP monitoring is currently being conducted at five primary EFPC sites, although sites may be excluded or added depending upon the specific objectives of the various tasks. Criteria used in selecting the sites include: (1) location of sampling sites used in other studies, (2) known or suspected sources of downstream impacts, (3) proximity to U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) boundaries, (4) appropriate habitat distribution, and (5) access. The primary sampling sites include upper EFPC at kilometers (EFKs) 24.4 and 23.4 [upstream and downstream of Lake Reality (LR) respectively]; EFK 18.7 (also EFK 18.2 and 19), located off

  20. A Hypothesis for Using Pathway Genetic Load Analysis for Understanding Complex Outcomes in Bilirubin Encephalopathy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riordan, Sean M.; Bittel, Douglas C.; Le Pichon, Jean-Baptiste; Gazzin, Silvia; Tiribelli, Claudio; Watchko, Jon F.; Wennberg, Richard P.; Shapiro, Steven M.

    2016-01-01

    Genetic-based susceptibility to bilirubin neurotoxicity and chronic bilirubin encephalopathy (kernicterus) is still poorly understood. Neonatal jaundice affects 60–80% of newborns, and considerable effort goes into preventing this relatively benign condition from escalating into the development of kernicterus making the incidence of this potentially devastating condition very rare in more developed countries. The current understanding of the genetic background of kernicterus is largely comprised of mutations related to alterations of bilirubin production, elimination, or both. Less is known about mutations that may predispose or protect against CNS bilirubin neurotoxicity. The lack of a monogenetic source for this risk of bilirubin neurotoxicity suggests that disease progression is dependent upon an overall decrease in the functionality of one or more essential genetically controlled metabolic pathways. In other words, a “load” is placed on key pathways in the form of multiple genetic variants that combine to create a vulnerable phenotype. The idea of epistatic interactions creating a pathway genetic load (PGL) that affects the response to a specific insult has been previously reported as a PGL score. We hypothesize that the PGL score can be used to investigate whether increased susceptibility to bilirubin-induced CNS damage in neonates is due to a mutational load being placed on key genetic pathways important to the central nervous system's response to bilirubin neurotoxicity. We propose a modification of the PGL score method that replaces the use of a canonical pathway with custom gene lists organized into three tiers with descending levels of evidence combined with the utilization of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) causality prediction methods. The PGL score has the potential to explain the genetic background of complex bilirubin induced neurological disorders (BIND) such as kernicterus and could be the key to understanding ranges of outcome severity

  1. Emerging systems biology approaches in nanotoxicology: Towards a mechanism-based understanding of nanomaterial hazard and risk

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Costa, Pedro M.; Fadeel, Bengt, E-mail: Bengt.Fadeel@ki.se

    2016-05-15

    Engineered nanomaterials are being developed for a variety of technological applications. However, the increasing use of nanomaterials in society has led to concerns about their potential adverse effects on human health and the environment. During the first decade of nanotoxicological research, the realization has emerged that effective risk assessment of the multitudes of new nanomaterials would benefit from a comprehensive understanding of their toxicological mechanisms, which is difficult to achieve with traditional, low-throughput, single end-point oriented approaches. Therefore, systems biology approaches are being progressively applied within the nano(eco)toxicological sciences. This novel paradigm implies that the study of biological systems should be integrative resulting in quantitative and predictive models of nanomaterial behaviour in a biological system. To this end, global ‘omics’ approaches with which to assess changes in genes, proteins, metabolites, etc. are deployed allowing for computational modelling of the biological effects of nanomaterials. Here, we highlight omics and systems biology studies in nanotoxicology, aiming towards the implementation of a systems nanotoxicology and mechanism-based risk assessment of nanomaterials. - Highlights: • Systems nanotoxicology is a multi-disciplinary approach to quantitative modelling. • Transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics remain the most common methods. • Global “omics” techniques should be coupled to computational modelling approaches. • The discovery of nano-specific toxicity pathways and biomarkers is a prioritized goal. • Overall, experimental nanosafety research must endeavour reproducibility and relevance.

  2. Emerging systems biology approaches in nanotoxicology: Towards a mechanism-based understanding of nanomaterial hazard and risk

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Costa, Pedro M.; Fadeel, Bengt

    2016-01-01

    Engineered nanomaterials are being developed for a variety of technological applications. However, the increasing use of nanomaterials in society has led to concerns about their potential adverse effects on human health and the environment. During the first decade of nanotoxicological research, the realization has emerged that effective risk assessment of the multitudes of new nanomaterials would benefit from a comprehensive understanding of their toxicological mechanisms, which is difficult to achieve with traditional, low-throughput, single end-point oriented approaches. Therefore, systems biology approaches are being progressively applied within the nano(eco)toxicological sciences. This novel paradigm implies that the study of biological systems should be integrative resulting in quantitative and predictive models of nanomaterial behaviour in a biological system. To this end, global ‘omics’ approaches with which to assess changes in genes, proteins, metabolites, etc. are deployed allowing for computational modelling of the biological effects of nanomaterials. Here, we highlight omics and systems biology studies in nanotoxicology, aiming towards the implementation of a systems nanotoxicology and mechanism-based risk assessment of nanomaterials. - Highlights: • Systems nanotoxicology is a multi-disciplinary approach to quantitative modelling. • Transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics remain the most common methods. • Global “omics” techniques should be coupled to computational modelling approaches. • The discovery of nano-specific toxicity pathways and biomarkers is a prioritized goal. • Overall, experimental nanosafety research must endeavour reproducibility and relevance.

  3. Molecular phenology in plants: in natura systems biology for the comprehensive understanding of seasonal responses under natural environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudoh, Hiroshi

    2016-04-01

    Phenology refers to the study of seasonal schedules of organisms. Molecular phenology is defined here as the study of the seasonal patterns of organisms captured by molecular biology techniques. The history of molecular phenology is reviewed briefly in relation to advances in the quantification technology of gene expression. High-resolution molecular phenology (HMP) data have enabled us to study phenology with an approach of in natura systems biology. I review recent analyses of FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC), a temperature-responsive repressor of flowering, along the six steps in the typical flow of in natura systems biology. The extensive studies of the regulation of FLC have made this example a successful case in which a comprehensive understanding of gene functions has been progressing. The FLC-mediated long-term memory of past temperatures creates time lags with other seasonal signals, such as photoperiod and short-term temperature. Major signals that control flowering time have a phase lag between them under natural conditions, and hypothetical phase lag calendars are proposed as mechanisms of season detection in plants. Transcriptomic HMP brings a novel strategy to the study of molecular phenology, because it provides a comprehensive representation of plant functions. I discuss future perspectives of molecular phenology from the standpoints of molecular biology, evolutionary biology and ecology. © 2015 The Author. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  4. Cognitive Deficits in Schizophrenia: Understanding the Biological Correlates and Remediation Strategies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Adarsh; Shukla, Rashmi

    2018-01-01

    Cognitive deficits are one of the core symptoms of schizophrenia that evolve during the course of schizophrenia, after being originated even before the onset of illness. Existing pharmacological and biological treatment modalities fall short to meet the needs to improve the cognitive symptoms; hence, various cognitive remediation strategies have been adopted to address these deficits. Research evidences suggest that cognitive remediation measures improve the functioning, limit disability bettering the quality of life. The functional outcomes of cognitive remediation in schizophrenia are resultant of neurobiological changes in specific brain areas. Recent years witnessed significant innovations in cognitive remediation strategies in schizophrenia. This comprehensive review highlights the biological correlates of cognitive deficits in schizophrenia and the remedial measures with evidence base. PMID:29397662

  5. Modeling complex biological flows in multi-scale systems using the APDEC framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trebotich, David

    2006-09-01

    We have developed advanced numerical algorithms to model biological fluids in multiscale flow environments using the software framework developed under the SciDAC APDEC ISIC. The foundation of our computational effort is an approach for modeling DNA laden fluids as ''bead-rod'' polymers whose dynamics are fully coupled to an incompressible viscous solvent. The method is capable of modeling short range forces and interactions between particles using soft potentials and rigid constraints. Our methods are based on higher-order finite difference methods in complex geometry with adaptivity, leveraging algorithms and solvers in the APDEC Framework. Our Cartesian grid embedded boundary approach to incompressible viscous flow in irregular geometries has also been interfaced to a fast and accurate level-sets method within the APDEC Framework for extracting surfaces from volume renderings of medical image data and used to simulate cardio-vascular and pulmonary flows in critical anatomies.

  6. Stress Biology and Aging Mechanisms: Toward Understanding the Deep Connection Between Adaptation to Stress and Longevity

    OpenAIRE

    Epel, Elissa S.; Lithgow, Gordon J.

    2014-01-01

    The rate of biological aging is modulated in part by genes interacting with stressor exposures. Basic research has shown that exposure to short-term stress can strengthen cellular responses to stress (“hormetic stress”). Hormetic stress promotes longevity in part through enhanced activity of molecular chaperones and other defense mechanisms. In contrast, prolonged exposure to stress can overwhelm compensatory responses (“toxic stress”) and shorten lifespan. One key question is whether the str...

  7. Bions: a family of biomimetic mineralo-organic complexes derived from biological fluids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng-Yeu Wu

    Full Text Available Mineralo-organic nanoparticles form spontaneously in human body fluids when the concentrations of calcium and phosphate ions exceed saturation. We have shown previously that these mineralo-organic nanoparticles possess biomimetic properties and can reproduce the whole phenomenology of the so-called nanobacteria-mineralized entities initially described as the smallest microorganisms on earth. Here, we examine the possibility that various charged elements and ions may form mineral nanoparticles with similar properties in biological fluids. Remarkably, all the elements tested, including sodium, magnesium, aluminum, calcium, manganese, iron, cobalt, nickel, copper, zinc, strontium, and barium form mineralo-organic particles with bacteria-like morphologies and other complex shapes following precipitation with phosphate in body fluids. Upon formation, these mineralo-organic particles, which we term bions, invariably accumulate carbonate apatite during incubation in biological fluids; yet, the particles also incorporate additional elements and thus reflect the ionic milieu in which they form. Bions initially harbor an amorphous mineral phase that gradually converts to crystals in culture. Our results show that serum produces a dual inhibition-seeding effect on bion formation. Using a comprehensive proteomic analysis, we identify a wide range of proteins that bind to these mineral particles during incubation in medium containing serum. The two main binding proteins identified, albumin and fetuin-A, act as both inhibitors and seeders of bions in culture. Notably, bions possess several biomimetic properties, including the possibility to increase in size and number and to be sub-cultured in fresh culture medium. Based on these results, we propose that bions represent biological, mineralo-organic particles that may form in the body under both physiological and pathological homeostasis conditions. These mineralo-organic particles may be part of a

  8. Monitoring prion protein expression in complex biological samples by SERS for diagnostic applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manno, D; Filippo, E; Fiore, R; Serra, A [Dipartimento di Scienza dei Materiali, Universita del Salento, Lecce (Italy); Urso, E; Rizzello, A; Maffia, M [Dipartimento di Scienze e Tecnologie Biologiche ed Ambientali, Universita del Salento, Lecce (Italy)

    2010-04-23

    Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) allows a new insight into the analysis of cell physiology. In this work, the difficulty of producing suitable substrates that, besides permitting the amplification of the Raman signal, do not interact with the biological material causing alteration, has been overcome by a combined method of hydrothermal green synthesis and thermal annealing. The SERS analysis of the cell membrane has been performed with special attention to the cellular prion protein PrP{sup C}. In addition, SERS has also been used to reveal the prion protein-Cu(II) interaction in four different cell models (B104, SH-SY5Y, GN11, HeLa), expressing PrP{sup C} at different levels. A significant implication of the current work consists of the intriguing possibility of revealing and quantifying prion protein expression in complex biological samples by a cheap SERS-based method, replacing the expensive and time-consuming immuno-assay systems commonly employed.

  9. SWIM: a computational tool to unveiling crucial nodes in complex biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paci, Paola; Colombo, Teresa; Fiscon, Giulia; Gurtner, Aymone; Pavesi, Giulio; Farina, Lorenzo

    2017-03-20

    SWItchMiner (SWIM) is a wizard-like software implementation of a procedure, previously described, able to extract information contained in complex networks. Specifically, SWIM allows unearthing the existence of a new class of hubs, called "fight-club hubs", characterized by a marked negative correlation with their first nearest neighbors. Among them, a special subset of genes, called "switch genes", appears to be characterized by an unusual pattern of intra- and inter-module connections that confers them a crucial topological role, interestingly mirrored by the evidence of their clinic-biological relevance. Here, we applied SWIM to a large panel of cancer datasets from The Cancer Genome Atlas, in order to highlight switch genes that could be critically associated with the drastic changes in the physiological state of cells or tissues induced by the cancer development. We discovered that switch genes are found in all cancers we studied and they encompass protein coding genes and non-coding RNAs, recovering many known key cancer players but also many new potential biomarkers not yet characterized in cancer context. Furthermore, SWIM is amenable to detect switch genes in different organisms and cell conditions, with the potential to uncover important players in biologically relevant scenarios, including but not limited to human cancer.

  10. An attempt to understand glioma stem cell biology through centrality analysis of a protein interaction network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mallik, Mrinmay Kumar

    2018-02-07

    Biological networks can be analyzed using "Centrality Analysis" to identify the more influential nodes and interactions in the network. This study was undertaken to create and visualize a biological network comprising of protein-protein interactions (PPIs) amongst proteins which are preferentially over-expressed in glioma cancer stem cell component (GCSC) of glioblastomas as compared to the glioma non-stem cancer cell (GNSC) component and then to analyze this network through centrality analyses (CA) in order to identify the essential proteins in this network and their interactions. In addition, this study proposes a new centrality analysis method pertaining exclusively to transcription factors (TFs) and interactions amongst them. Moreover the relevant molecular functions, biological processes and biochemical pathways amongst these proteins were sought through enrichment analysis. A protein interaction network was created using a list of proteins which have been shown to be preferentially expressed or over-expressed in GCSCs isolated from glioblastomas as compared to the GNSCs. This list comprising of 38 proteins, created using manual literature mining, was submitted to the Reactome FIViz tool, a web based application integrated into Cytoscape, an open source software platform for visualizing and analyzing molecular interaction networks and biological pathways to produce the network. This network was subjected to centrality analyses utilizing ranked lists of six centrality measures using the FIViz application and (for the first time) a dedicated centrality analysis plug-in ; CytoNCA. The interactions exclusively amongst the transcription factors were nalyzed through a newly proposed centrality analysis method called "Gene Expression Associated Degree Centrality Analysis (GEADCA)". Enrichment analysis was performed using the "network function analysis" tool on Reactome. The CA was able to identify a small set of proteins with consistently high centrality ranks that

  11. Toward a better understanding of the complex geochemical processes governing subsurface contaminant transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Puls, R.W.

    1990-01-01

    Identification and understanding of the geochemical processes, including ion exchange, precipitation, organic partitioning, chemisorption, aqueous complexation, and colloidal stability and transport, controlling subsurface contamination is essential for making accurate predictions of the fate and transport of these constituents. Current approaches to quantify the effect of these processes primarily involve laboratory techniques, including the use of closed static systems (batch experiments) where small amounts of aquifer solids or minerals are contacted with an aqueous phase containing the components of interest for relatively short durations; and dynamic systems (column experiments) where a larger segment of the aquifer is investigated by analyzing the breakthrough profiles of reactive and non-reactive species. Both approaches are constrained by differences in scale, alteration of media during sample collection and use, and spatial variability. More field reactivity studies are needed to complement established laboratory approaches for the determination of retardation factors and scaling factors, corroboration of batch and column results, and validation of sampling techniques. These studies also serve to accentuate areas of geochemical process research where data deficiencies exist, such as the kinetics of adsorption-desorption, metal-organic-mineral interactions, and colloidal mobility. The advantages and disadvantages of the above approaches are discussed in the context of achieving a more completely integrated approach to geochemical transport experiments, with supportive data presented from selected studies. (Author) (16 refs., 4 figs., 2 tabs.)

  12. Complexities in Understanding Attentional Functioning among Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kimberly eLane

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Parental reports of attention problems and clinical symptomatology of ADHD among children with fetal alcohol syndrome disorder (FASD were assessed in relation to performance on standardized subtests of attantional control/shifting and selective attention from the Test of Everyday Attention for Children (TEA-Ch; Manly et al., 1998. The participants included 14 children with FASD with a mean CA of 11.7 years and a mean MA of 9.7 years, and 14 typically developing (TD children with no reported history of prenatal exposure to alcohol or attention problems with a mean CA of 8.4 years and a mean MA of 9.6 years. The children with FASD were rated by their caregivers as having clinically significant attention difficulties for their developmental age. The reported symptomatology for the majority of the children with FASD were consistent with a diagnosis of ADHD, combined type, and only one child had a score within the average range. These reports are consistent with the finding here that the children with FASD demonstrated difficulties on the Creature Counting subtest of attentional control/shifting, but inconsistent with the finding that they outperformed the TD children on the Map Mission subtest of selective attention. These findings are considered within the context of the complexity in understanding attentional functioning among children with FASD and discrepancies across sources of information and components of attention.

  13. Understanding How to Support Family Caregivers of Seniors with Complex Needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, Lesley; Brémault-Phillips, Suzette; Parmar, Jasneet; Johnson, Melissa; Sacrey, Lori-Ann

    2017-01-01

    Purpose of the Study The purpose of this study was to describe the experiences and challenges of supporting family caregivers of seniors with complex needs and to outline support strategies and research priorities aimed at supporting them. Design and Methods A CIHR-funded, two-day conference entitled “Supporting Family Caregivers of Seniors: Improving Care and Caregiver Outcomes” was held. An integrated knowledge translation approach guided this planning conference. Day 1 included presentations of research evidence, followed by participant engagement Qualitative data was collected regarding facilitators, barriers/gaps, and recommendations for the provision of caregiver supports. Day 2 focused on determination of research priorities. Results Identified facilitators to the provision of caregiver support included accessibility of health-care and community-based resources, availability of well-intended health-care providers, and recognition of caregivers by the system. Barriers/gaps related to challenges with communication, access to information, knowledge of what is needed, system navigation, access to financial resources, and current policies. Recommendations regarding caregiver services and research revolved around assisting caregivers to self-identify and seek support, formalizing caregiver supports, centralizing resources, making system navigation available, and preparing the next generation for caregiving. Implication A better understanding of the needs of family caregivers and ways to support them is critical to seniors’ health services redesign. PMID:28690707

  14. Understanding Epistatic Interactions between Genes Targeted by Non-coding Regulatory Elements in Complex Diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min Kyung Sung

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide association studies have proven the highly polygenic architecture of complex diseases or traits; therefore, single-locus-based methods are usually unable to detect all involved loci, especially when individual loci exert small effects. Moreover, the majority of associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms resides in non-coding regions, making it difficult to understand their phenotypic contribution. In this work, we studied epistatic interactions associated with three common diseases using Korea Association Resource (KARE data: type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM, hypertension (HT, and coronary artery disease (CAD. We showed that epistatic single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs were enriched in enhancers, as well as in DNase I footprints (the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements [ENCODE] Project Consortium 2012, which suggested that the disruption of the regulatory regions where transcription factors bind may be involved in the disease mechanism. Accordingly, to identify the genes affected by the SNPs, we employed whole-genome multiple-cell-type enhancer data which discovered using DNase I profiles and Cap Analysis Gene Expression (CAGE. Assigned genes were significantly enriched in known disease associated gene sets, which were explored based on the literature, suggesting that this approach is useful for detecting relevant affected genes. In our knowledge-based epistatic network, the three diseases share many associated genes and are also closely related with each other through many epistatic interactions. These findings elucidate the genetic basis of the close relationship between DM, HT, and CAD.

  15. Silver nanoparticles in complex biological media: assessment of colloidal stability and protein corona formation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Argentiere, Simona, E-mail: simona.argentiere@fondazionefilarete.com; Cella, Claudia, E-mail: claudia.cella@unimi.it [Fondazione Filarete (Italy); Cesaria, Maura, E-mail: maura.cesaria@le.infn.it [Università del Salento, Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica “Ennio De Giorgi” (Italy); Milani, Paolo, E-mail: paolo.milani@mi.infn.it; Lenardi, Cristina, E-mail: cristina.lenardi@mi.infn.it [Università degli Studi di Milano, CIMAINA and Dipartimento di Fisica (Italy)

    2016-08-15

    Engineered silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are among the most used nanomaterials in consumer products, therefore concerns are raised about their potential for adverse effects in humans and environment. Although an increasing number of studies in vitro and in vivo are being reported on the toxicity of AgNPs, most of them suffer from incomplete characterization of AgNPs in the tested biological media. As a consequence, the comparison of toxicological data is troublesome and the toxicity evaluation still remains an open critical issue. The development of a reliable protocol to evaluate interactions of AgNPs with surrounding proteins as well as to assess their colloidal stability is therefore required. In this regard, it is of importance not only to use multiple, easy-to-access and simple techniques but also to understand limitations of each characterization methods. In this work, the morphological and structural behaviour of AgNPs has been studied in two relevant biological media, namely 10 % FBS and MP. Three different techniques (Dynamic Light Scattering, Transmission Electron Microscopy, UV–Vis spectroscopy) were tested for their suitability in detecting AgNPs of three different sizes (10, 40 and 100 nm) coated with either citrate or polyvinylpyrrolidone. Results showed that UV–Vis spectroscopy is the most versatile and informative technique to gain information about interaction between AgNPs and surrounding proteins and to determine their colloidal stability in the tested biological media. These findings are expected to provide useful insights in characterizing AgNPs before performing any further in vitro/in vivo experiment.

  16. Routine medicare and radiation exposure (3) biology about radiation exposure for its understanding

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saito, Tsutomu; Hirata, Hideki

    2013-01-01

    Radiation-induced biological responses are easily explained as follows. The process of cancer formation is on the hypothesis of multi-step carcinogenesis of the initiation, promotion and progression. Radiation is an exogenous physical initiator. Physical process of ionization in biomaterials by radiation occurs within the time of 10 -12 sec order, which resulting in chemical process (10 -6 sec) leading to tissue response or to cancerous change (several tens hours to several decades). Direct and indirect effects on DNA are yielded with the high LET (linear energy transfer) radiation and low, through OH-radical formation, respectively. Double strand break of DNA induced by radiation is repaired by the error-free homologous recombination or error-prone non-homologous end-joining. At the early phase of the damage, DNA damage response begins to work for repairing, and when the response is inoperable, cellular response is induced to lead radiation apoptosis as an exclusion mechanism of abnormal cells. The biological effects differ even at the same dose of different radiations when their LET is different, and relative biological effectiveness (RBE) is used. For correction of the stochastic radiation effect, the radiation weighting factor (W R ) is used for conversion to the single photon beam dose that ICRP defines as the equivalent dose (H T , Sv). ICRP (Pub. 103) also recommends the use of RBE (Gy) for the definitive effect. Radiation effects are known to be modified by such phenomena as the bystander effect, cluster damage of DNA, radiation adaptation, hormesis, dose rate effect and non-tumor inducing dose. ICRP employs linear non-threshold (LNT) hypothesis for low dose and low dose rate carcinogenesis. (T.T.)

  17. The biology of personalized cancer medicine: facing individual complexities underlying hallmark capabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Palma, Michele; Hanahan, Douglas

    2012-04-01

    It is a time of great promise and expectation for the applications of knowledge about mechanisms of cancer toward more effective and enduring therapies for human disease. Conceptualizations such as the hallmarks of cancer are providing an organizing principle with which to distill and rationalize the abject complexities of cancer phenotypes and genotypes across the spectrum of the human disease. A countervailing reality, however, involves the variable and often transitory responses to most mechanism-based targeted therapies, returning full circle to the complexity, arguing that the unique biology and genetics of a patient's tumor will in the future necessarily need to be incorporated into the decisions about optimal treatment strategies, the frontier of personalized cancer medicine. This perspective highlights considerations, metrics, and methods that may prove instrumental in charting the landscape of evaluating individual tumors so to better inform diagnosis, prognosis, and therapy. Integral to the consideration is remarkable heterogeneity and variability, evidently embedded in cancer cells, but likely also in the cell types composing the supportive and interactive stroma of the tumor microenvironment (e.g., leukocytes and fibroblasts), whose diversity in form, regulation, function, and abundance may prove to rival that of the cancer cells themselves. By comprehensively interrogating both parenchyma and stroma of patients' cancers with a suite of parametric tools, the promise of mechanism-based therapy may truly be realized. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Reduction theories elucidate the origins of complex biological rhythms generated by interacting delay-induced oscillations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ikuhiro Yamaguchi

    Full Text Available Time delay is known to induce sustained oscillations in many biological systems such as electroencephalogram (EEG activities and gene regulations. Furthermore, interactions among delay-induced oscillations can generate complex collective rhythms, which play important functional roles. However, due to their intrinsic infinite dimensionality, theoretical analysis of interacting delay-induced oscillations has been limited. Here, we show that the two primary methods for finite-dimensional limit cycles, namely, the center manifold reduction in the vicinity of the Hopf bifurcation and the phase reduction for weak interactions, can successfully be applied to interacting infinite-dimensional delay-induced oscillations. We systematically derive the complex Ginzburg-Landau equation and the phase equation without delay for general interaction networks. Based on the reduced low-dimensional equations, we demonstrate that diffusive (linearly attractive coupling between a pair of delay-induced oscillations can exhibit nontrivial amplitude death and multimodal phase locking. Our analysis provides unique insights into experimentally observed EEG activities such as sudden transitions among different phase-locked states and occurrence of epileptic seizures.

  19. Towards Biological Control of Kudzu Through an Improved Understanding of Insect-Kudzu Interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Orr, D.; Barber, G.; DeBarr, G.; Thornton, M.

    2001-08-03

    The authors evaluated various approaches to the biological control of kudzu and exotic weed that infests the SRS. A large number of native pollinators were found to be attracted to kudzu. The viability of seed was found to be low, between 2% and 11%. This is the result of native Hemiptera. The results suggest that seed feeding insects should not be targeted for importation. Both kudzu and soybeans had the same level of abundance and diversity of herbivore insects and the same levels of defoliation. No vine or root damaging species were found. Efforts should be targeted to the latter insects to control kudzu.

  20. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Santello, M.; Bianchi, M.; Gabiccini, M.; Ricciardi, E.; Salvietti, G.; Prattichizzo, D.; Ernst, M.; Moscatelli, A.; Jörntell, H.; Kappers, A.M.L.; Kyriakopoulos, K.; Albu-Schäffer, A.; Castellini, C.; Bicchi, A.

    The term ‘synergy’ – from the Greek synergia – means ‘working together’. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural

  1. Understanding a Basic Biological Process: Expert and Novice Models of Meiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kindfield, Ann C. H.

    The results of a study of the meiosis models utilized by individuals at varying levels of expertise while reasoning about the process of meiosis are presented. Based on these results, the issues of sources of misconceptions/difficulties and the construction of a sound understanding of meiosis are discussed. Five individuals from each of three…

  2. Toward an Understanding of the Epistemic Values of Biological Scientists as Expressed in Scholarly Publication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Kathel

    2010-01-01

    This dissertation develops a deeper understanding of the epistemic values of scientists, specifically exploring the proposed values of community, collaboration, connectivity and credit as part of the scholarly communication system. These values are the essence of scientists actively engaged in conducting science and in communicating their work to…

  3. Student Teachers' Ways of Thinking and Ways of Understanding Digestion and the Digestive System in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çimer, Sabiha Odabasi; Ursavas, Nazihan

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the ways in which student teachers understand digestion and the digestive system and, subsequently, their ways of thinking, as reflected in their problem solving approaches and the justification schemes that they used to validate their claims. For this purpose, clinical interviews were conducted with 10…

  4. Future development of biological understanding of radiation protection: implications of nonstochastic effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hahn, F.F.; McClellan, R.O.; Boecker, B.B.; Muggenburg, B.A.

    1988-01-01

    Radiation-protection standards are based on minimizing or preventing biological effects in exposed populations. Radiation-induced biological effects can be classified as stochastic--malignant and hereditary diseases for which the probability of an effect occurring is a function of dose without threshold--and nonstochastic--inflammatory and degenerative diseases for which the severity and frequency of the effect varies with the dose and for which a threshold is present. The current International Commission on Radiation Protection (ICRP) approach for setting limits for intakes of radionuclides by workers, which accounts for doses to significantly exposed organs of the body, is based on limitation of stochastic effects in most situations. When setting exposure limits, nonstochastic effects are generally considered to be unlikely at the limits for stochastic effects. In some situations, limits based on prevention of nonstochastic effects are lower than for stochastic effects. This review considers the threshold radiation doses for thyroid, bone, liver and lung and their relationship to the limits recommended by the ICRP and the cancer risks at the limits. This review indicates that the threshold dose for nonstochastic effects in thyroid and lung is much above the dose limit as advocated by ICRP. The threshold dose for nonstochastic effects in bone and liver is much closer to the dose limit, but protection from nonstochastic effects should still be afforded by the dose limits

  5. Oligometastatic prostate cancer: shaping the definition with molecular imaging and an improved understanding of tumor biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joice, Gregory A; Rowe, Steven P; Pienta, Kenneth J; Gorin, Michael A

    2017-11-01

    The aim of this review is to discuss how novel imaging modalities and molecular markers are shaping the definition of oligometastatic prostate cancer. To effectively classify a patient as having oligometastatic prostate cancer, diagnostic tests must be sensitive enough to detect subtle sites of metastatic disease. Conventional imaging modalities can readily detect widespread polymetastatic disease but do not have the sensitivity necessary to reliably classify patients as oligometastatic. Molecular imaging using both metabolic- and molecularly-targeted radiotracers has demonstrated great promise in aiding in our ability to define the oligometastatic state. Perhaps the most promising data to date have been generated with radiotracers targeting prostate-specific membrane antigen. In addition, early studies are beginning to define biologic markers in the oligometastatic state that may be indicative of disease with minimal metastatic potential. Recent developments in molecular imaging have allowed for improved detection of metastatic prostate cancer allowing for more accurate staging of patients with oligometastatic disease. Future development of biologic markers may assist in defining the oligometastatic state and determining prognosis.

  6. Synthesis, spectroscopic and biological studies of transition metal complexes of novel schiff bases derived from amoxicillin and sugars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naz, N.

    2009-01-01

    Fe (II), Co (II) and Ni (II) metal complexes of new Schiff bases derived from amoxicillin with sugars (D-Glucose, D-Galactose and D-Mannose) have been synthesized and characterized by elemental analysis, FTIR, electronic absorption, and atomic absorption spectroscopy, magnetic moment measurements and thermal analysis. It has been found that Schiff bases behave as bi-dentate ligands forming complexes with 1:2 (metal:ligand) stoichiometry. The complexes were neutral as confirmed by their low conductance values. The biological applications of complexes have been studied on two gram negative (Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) and two gram positive (Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus aureus) microorganisms by Agar diffusion disc method. It has been found that all the complexes have higher biological activities than the pure amoxicillin. (author)

  7. Understanding Water-Stress Responses in Soybean Using Hydroponics System-A Systems Biology Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Prateek; Rabara, Roel C; Shulaev, Vladimir; Shen, Qingxi J; Rushton, Paul J

    2015-01-01

    The deleterious changes in environmental conditions such as water stress bring physiological and biochemical changes in plants, which results in crop loss. Thus, combating water stress is important for crop improvement to manage the needs of growing population. Utilization of hydroponics system in growing plants is questionable to some researchers, as it does not represent an actual field condition. However, trying to address a complex problem like water stress we have to utilize a simpler growing condition like the hydroponics system wherein every input given to the plants can be controlled. With the advent of high-throughput technologies, it is still challenging to address all levels of the genetic machinery whether a gene, protein, metabolite, and promoter. Thus, using a system of reduced complexity like hydroponics can certainly direct us toward the right candidates, if not completely help us to resolve the issue.

  8. Understanding Water-Stress Responses in Soybean Using Hydroponics System—A Systems Biology Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Prateek; Rabara, Roel C.; Shulaev, Vladimir; Shen, Qingxi J.; Rushton, Paul J.

    2015-01-01

    The deleterious changes in environmental conditions such as water stress bring physiological and biochemical changes in plants, which results in crop loss. Thus, combating water stress is important for crop improvement to manage the needs of growing population. Utilization of hydroponics system in growing plants is questionable to some researchers, as it does not represent an actual field condition. However, trying to address a complex problem like water stress we have to utilize a simpler growing condition like the hydroponics system wherein every input given to the plants can be controlled. With the advent of high-throughput technologies, it is still challenging to address all levels of the genetic machinery whether a gene, protein, metabolite, and promoter. Thus, using a system of reduced complexity like hydroponics can certainly direct us toward the right candidates, if not completely help us to resolve the issue. PMID:26734044

  9. The Value of a Comparative Approach to Understand the Complex Interplay between Microbiota and Host Immunity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norma M. Morella

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The eukaryote immune system evolved and continues to evolve within a microbial world, and as such is critically shaped by—and in some cases even reliant upon—the presence of host-associated microbial species. There are clear examples of adaptations that allow the host to simultaneously tolerate and/or promote growth of symbiotic microbiota while protecting itself against pathogens, but the relationship between immunity and the microbiome reaches far beyond simple recognition and includes complex cross talk between host and microbe as well as direct microbiome-mediated protection against pathogens. Here, we present a broad but brief overview of how the microbiome is controlled by and interacts with diverse immune systems, with the goal of identifying questions that can be better addressed by taking a comparative approach across plants and animals and different types of immunity. As two key examples of such an approach, we focus on data examining the importance of early exposure on microbiome tolerance and immune system development and function, and the importance of transmission among hosts in shaping the potential coevolution between, and long-term stability of, host–microbiome associations. Then, by comparing existing evidence across short-lived plants, mouse model systems and humans, and insects, we highlight areas of microbiome research that are strong in some systems and absent in others with the hope of guiding future research that will allow for broad-scale comparisons moving forward. We argue that such an approach will not only help with identification of generalities in host–microbiome–immune interactions but also improve our understanding of the role of the microbiome in host health.

  10. Theory and research in audiology education: understanding and representing complexity through informed methodological decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Stella L

    2013-05-01

    The discipline of audiology has the opportunity to embark on research in education from an informed perspective, learning from professions that began this journey decades ago. The goal of this article is to position our discipline as a new member in the academic field of health professional education (HPE), with much to learn and contribute. In this article, I discuss the need for theory in informing HPE research. I also stress the importance of balancing our research goals by selecting appropriate methodologies for relevant research questions, to ensure that we respect the complexity of social processes inherent in HPE. Examples of relevant research questions are used to illustrate the need to consider alternative methodologies and to rethink the traditional hierarchy of evidence. I also provide an example of the thought processes and decisions that informed the design of an educational research study using a constructivist grounded theory methodology. As audiology enters the scholarly field of HPE, we need to arm ourselves with some of the knowledge and perspective that informs the field. Thus, we need to broaden our conceptions of what we consider to be appropriate styles of academic writing, relevant research questions, and valid evidence. Also, if we are to embark on qualitative inquiry into audiology education (or other audiology topics), we need to ensure that we conduct this research with an adequate understanding of the theories and methodologies informing such approaches. We must strive to conduct high quality, rigorous qualitative research more often than uninformed, generic qualitative research. These goals are imperative to the advancement of the theoretical landscape of audiology education and evolving the place of audiology in the field of HPE. American Academy of Audiology.

  11. Genetically engineered mouse models of craniopharyngioma: an opportunity for therapy development and understanding of tumor biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apps, John Richard; Martinez-Barbera, Juan Pedro

    2017-05-01

    Adamantinomatous craniopharyngioma (ACP) is the commonest tumor of the sellar region in childhood. Two genetically engineered mouse models have been developed and are giving valuable insights into ACP biology. These models have identified novel pathways activated in tumors, revealed an important function of paracrine signalling and extended conventional theories about the role of organ-specific stem cells in tumorigenesis. In this review, we summarize these mouse models, what has been learnt, their limitations and open questions for future research. We then discussed how these mouse models may be used to test novel therapeutics against potentially targetable pathways recently identified in human ACP. © 2017 The Authors. Brain Pathology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of International Society of Neuropathology.

  12. Complex Parts, Complex Data: Why You Need to Understand What Radiation Single Event Testing Data Does and Doesn't Show and the Implications Thereof

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaBel, Kenneth A.; Berg, Melanie D.

    2015-01-01

    Electronic parts (integrated circuits) have grown in complexity such that determining all failure modes and risks from single particle event testing is impossible. In this presentation, the authors will present why this is so and provide some realism on what this means. Its all about understanding actual risks and not making assumptions.

  13. Nutritional sub-fertility in the dairy cow: towards improved reproductive management through a better biological understanding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Friggens, Nic; Disenhaus, C; Petit, H V

    2010-01-01

    for the dairy producer. In this study we focus on understanding the overall biological phenomena associated with nutritional sub-fertility rather than the underlying multiplicity of physiological interactions (already described in a number of recent studies). These phenomena are important because they represent...... the natural adaptations of the animal for dealing with variations in the nutritional environment. They can also be used to monitor and modulate reproductive performance on-farm. There is an underlying trade-off between two aspects of reproduction: investment in the viability of the current calf and investment...... embryos, which are of poorer quality, than do non-lactating cows. The same applies to high- compared to medium-genetic merit cows. Another important biological property is the adaptive use of body reserves in support of reproduction. Orchestrated endocrine changes in pregnancy and lactation facilitate...

  14. Bringing content understanding into usability testing in complex application domains—a case study in eHealth

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Simon Bruntse; Rasmussen, Claire Kirchert; Frøkjær, Erik

    2017-01-01

    A usability evaluation technique, Cooperative Usability Testing with Questions of Understanding (CUT with QU) intended to illuminate users’ ability to understand the content information of an application is proposed. In complex application domains as for instance the eHealth domain, this issue...... the participation of four physiotherapists and four clients in a period of 3.5 months, it was demonstrated how CUT with QU can complement conventional usability testing and provide insight into users’ challenges with understanding of a new complex eHealth application. More experiments in other complex application...... domains involving different kinds of users and evaluators are needed before we can tell whether CUT with QU is an effective usability testing technique of wider applicability. Performing CUT with QU is very demanding by drawing heavily on the evaluators’ ability to respond effectively to openings...

  15. Toward High School Biology: Helping Middle School Students Understand Chemical Reactions and Conservation of Mass in Nonliving and Living Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann-Abell, Cari F; Koppal, Mary; Roseman, Jo Ellen

    2016-01-01

    Modern biology has become increasingly molecular in nature, requiring students to understand basic chemical concepts. Studies show, however, that many students fail to grasp ideas about atom rearrangement and conservation during chemical reactions or the application of these ideas to biological systems. To help provide students with a better foundation, we used research-based design principles and collaborated in the development of a curricular intervention that applies chemistry ideas to living and nonliving contexts. Six eighth grade teachers and their students participated in a test of the unit during the Spring of 2013. Two of the teachers had used an earlier version of the unit the previous spring. The other four teachers were randomly assigned either to implement the unit or to continue teaching the same content using existing materials. Pre- and posttests were administered, and the data were analyzed using Rasch modeling and hierarchical linear modeling. The results showed that, when controlling for pretest score, gender, language, and ethnicity, students who used the curricular intervention performed better on the posttest than the students using existing materials. Additionally, students who participated in the intervention held fewer misconceptions. These results demonstrate the unit's promise in improving students' understanding of the targeted ideas. © 2016 C. F. Herrmann-Abell et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  16. Impacting Early Childhood Teachers' Understanding of the Complexities of Place Value

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cady, Jo Ann; Hopkins, Theresa M.; Price, Jamie

    2014-01-01

    In order to help children gain a more robust understanding of place value, teachers must understand the connections and relationships among the related concepts as well as possess knowledge of how children learn early number concepts. Unfortunately, teachers' familiarity with the base-ten number system and/or lack of an understanding of…

  17. [Bone Cell Biology Assessed by Microscopic Approach. A mathematical approach to understand bone remodeling].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kameo, Yoshitaka; Adachi, Taiji

    2015-10-01

    It is well known that bone tissue can change its outer shape and internal structure by remodeling according to a changing mechanical environment. However, the mechanism of bone functional adaptation induced by the collaborative metabolic activities of bone cells in response to mechanical stimuli remains elusive. In this article, we focus on the hierarchy of bone structure and function from the microscopic cellular level to the macroscopic tissue level. We provide an overview of a mathematical approach to understand the adaptive changes in trabecular morphology under the application of mechanical stress.

  18. Functional liposomes and supported lipid bilayers: towards the complexity of biological archetypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berti, Debora; Caminati, Gabriella; Baglioni, Piero

    2011-05-21

    This perspective paper provides some illustrative examples on the interplay between information gathered on planar supported lipid bilayers (SLB) and unilamellar lipid vesicles (ULV) to get an integrated description of phenomena occurring at the nanoscale that involve locally bilayered structures. Similarities and differences are underlined and critically compared in terms of biomimetic fidelity and instrumental accessibility to structural and dynamical parameters, focusing on some recent reports that either explicitly address this comparison or introducing some studies that separately investigate the same process in SLB and lipid vesicles. Despite the structural similarity on the nanoscale, the different topology implies radically different characterization techniques that have evolved in sectorial and separated approaches. The quest for increasing levels of compositional complexity for bilayered systems should not result in a loss of structural and dynamical control: this is the central challenge of future research in this area, where the integrated approach highlighted in this contribution would enable improved levels of understanding. © The Owner Societies 2011

  19. Understanding specificity in metabolic pathways-Structural biology of human nucleotide metabolism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Welin, Martin; Nordlund, Paer

    2010-01-01

    Interactions are the foundation of life at the molecular level. In the plethora of activities in the cell, the evolution of enzyme specificity requires the balancing of appropriate substrate affinity with a negative selection, in order to minimize interactions with other potential substrates in the cell. To understand the structural basis for enzyme specificity, the comparison of structural and biochemical data between enzymes within pathways using similar substrates and effectors is valuable. Nucleotide metabolism is one of the largest metabolic pathways in the human cell and is of outstanding therapeutic importance since it activates and catabolises nucleoside based anti-proliferative drugs and serves as a direct target for anti-proliferative drugs. In recent years the structural coverage of the enzymes involved in human nucleotide metabolism has been dramatically improved and is approaching completion. An important factor has been the contribution from the Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC) at Karolinska Institutet, which recently has solved 33 novel structures of enzymes and enzyme domains in human nucleotide metabolism pathways and homologs thereof. In this review we will discuss some of the principles for substrate specificity of enzymes in human nucleotide metabolism illustrated by a selected set of enzyme families where a detailed understanding of the structural determinants for specificity is now emerging.

  20. Prospects of Understanding the Molecular Biology of Disease Resistance in Rice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pankaj Kumar Singh

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Rice is one of the important crops grown worldwide and is considered as an important crop for global food security. Rice is being affected by various fungal, bacterial and viral diseases resulting in huge yield losses every year. Deployment of resistance genes in various crops is one of the important methods of disease management. However, identification, cloning and characterization of disease resistance genes is a very tedious effort. To increase the life span of resistant cultivars, it is important to understand the molecular basis of plant host–pathogen interaction. With the advancement in rice genetics and genomics, several rice varieties resistant to fungal, bacterial and viral pathogens have been developed. However, resistance response of these varieties break down very frequently because of the emergence of more virulent races of the pathogen in nature. To increase the durability of resistance genes under field conditions, understanding the mechanismof resistance response and its molecular basis should be well understood. Some emerging concepts like interspecies transfer of pattern recognition receptors (PRRs and transgenerational plant immunitycan be employed to develop sustainable broad spectrum resistant varieties of rice.

  1. Recent advances in understanding the biology, epidemiology and control of chlamydial infections in koalas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polkinghorne, Adam; Hanger, Jon; Timms, Peter

    2013-08-30

    The koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) is recognised as a threatened wildlife species in various parts of Australia. A major contributing factor to the decline and long-term viability of affected populations is disease caused by the obligate intracellular bacteria, Chlamydia. Two chlamydial species infect the koala, Chlamydia pecorum and Chlamydia pneumoniae, and have been reported in nearly all mainland koala populations. Chlamydial infections of koalas are associated with ocular infections leading to blindness and genital tract infections linked to infertility, among other serious clinical manifestations. Diagnosis can be based on clinical presentation alone, however, it is complicated by the observation that many koala chlamydial infections occur with no overt signs of clinical disease. Instead, accurate diagnosis requires detailed clinical assessment and confirmatory testing by a range of PCR-based assays. Antibiotic treatment for koala chlamydial infection is possible, however, results on its success are mixed. A more practical solution for the protection of diseased populations is the application of a koala Chlamydia vaccine, with recent trials indicating promising results. Interestingly, molecular epidemiology studies of koala C. pecorum infections and recent comparative genomic analyses of koala C. pneumoniae have revealed potential differences in their origin that will have wider ramifications for our understanding of human chlamydial infections and host adaptation of the chlamydiae. This review summarises changes to the taxonomy of koala chlamydial infections and recent advances in our understanding of the epidemiology, diagnosis, treatment, control and evolution of Chlamydia infections in this iconic wildlife species. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Single lipid vesicle assay for characterizing single-enzyme kinetics of phospholipid hydrolysis in a complex biological fluid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabaei, Seyed R; Rabe, Michael; Zetterberg, Henrik; Zhdanov, Vladimir P; Höök, Fredrik

    2013-09-25

    Imaging of individual lipid vesicles is used to track single-enzyme kinetics of phospholipid hydrolysis. The method is employed to quantify the catalytic activity of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) in both pure and complex biological fluids. The measurements are demonstrated to offer a subpicomolar limit of detection (LOD) of human secretory PLA2 (sPLA2) in up to 1000-fold-diluted cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). An additional new feature provided by the single-enzyme sensitivity is that information about both relative concentration variations of active sPLA2 in CSF and the specific enzymatic activity can be simultaneously obtained. When CSF samples from healthy controls and individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease (AD) are analyzed, the specific enzymatic activity is found to be preserved within 7% in the different CSF samples whereas the enzyme concentration differs by up to 56%. This suggests that the previously reported difference in PLA2 activity in CSF samples from healthy and AD individuals originates from differences in the PLA2 expression level rather than from the enzyme activity. Conventional ensemble averaging methods used to probe sPLA2 activity do not allow one to obtain such information. Together with an improvement in the LOD of at least 1 order of magnitude compared to that of conventional assays, this suggests that the method will become useful in furthering our understanding of the role of PLA2 in health and disease and in detecting the pharmacodynamic effects of PLA2-targeting drug candidates.

  3. Towards the Biological Understanding of CTC: Capture Technologies, Definitions and Potential to Create Metastasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana M.C. Barradas

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Circulating Tumor Cells (CTC are rare cells originated from tumors that travel into the blood stream, extravasate to different organs of which only a small fraction will develop into metastasis. The presence of CTC enumerated with the CellSearch system is associated with a relative short survival and their continued presence after the first cycles of therapy indicates a futile therapy in patients with metastatic carcinomas. Detailed characterization of CTC holds the promise to enable the choice of the optimal therapy for the individual patients during the course of the disease. The phenotype, physical and biological properties are however not well understood making it difficult to assess the merit of recent technological advancements to improve upon the capture of CTC or to evaluate their metastatic potential. Here we will discuss the recent advances in the classification of CTC captured by the CellSearch system, the implications of their features and numbers. Latest capture platforms are reviewed and placed in the light of technology improvements needed to detect CTC. Physical properties, phenotype, viability and proliferative potential and means to assess their proliferation and metastatic capacity will be summarized and placed in the context of the latest CTC capture platforms.

  4. Mass amplifying probe for sensitive fluorescence anisotropy detection of small molecules in complex biological samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Liang; Zou, Yuan; Lin, Ninghang; Zhu, Zhi; Jenkins, Gareth; Yang, Chaoyong James

    2012-07-03

    detection of small molecules by means of FA in complex biological samples.

  5. Biologically Complex Planar Cell Plasma Membranes Supported on Polyelectrolyte Cushions Enhance Transmembrane Protein Mobility and Retain Native Orientation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Han-Yuan; Chen, Wei-Liang; Ober, Christopher K; Daniel, Susan

    2018-01-23

    Reconstituted supported lipid bilayers (SLB) are widely used as in vitro cell-surface models because they are compatible with a variety of surface-based analytical techniques. However, one of the challenges of using SLBs as a model of the cell surface is the limited complexity in membrane composition, including the incorporation of transmembrane proteins and lipid diversity that may impact the activity of those proteins. Additionally, it is challenging to preserve the transmembrane protein native orientation, function, and mobility in SLBs. Here, we leverage the interaction between cell plasma membrane vesicles and polyelectrolyte brushes to create planar bilayers from cell plasma membrane vesicles that have budded from the cell surface. This approach promotes the direct incorporation of membrane proteins and other species into the planar bilayer without using detergent or reconstitution and preserves membrane constituents. Furthermore, the structure of the polyelectrolyte brush serves as a cushion between the planar bilayer and rigid supporting surface, limiting the interaction of the cytosolic domains of membrane proteins with this surface. Single particle tracking was used to analyze the motion of GPI-linked yellow fluorescent proteins (GPI-YFP) and neon-green fused transmembrane P2X2 receptors (P2X2-neon) and shows that this platform retains over 75% mobility of multipass transmembrane proteins in its native membrane environment. An enzyme accessibility assay confirmed that the protein orientation is preserved and results in the extracellular domain facing toward the bulk phase and the cytosolic side facing the support. Because the platform presented here retains the complexity of the cell plasma membrane and preserves protein orientation and mobility, it is a better representative mimic of native cell surfaces, which may find many applications in biological assays aimed at understanding cell membrane phenomena.

  6. The infection biology of Sphaerulina musiva: clues to understanding a forest pathogen.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruqian Qin

    Full Text Available Trees in the genus Populus and their interspecific hybrids are used across North America for fiber production and as a potential source of biofuel. Plantations of these species are severely impacted by a fungal pathogen, Sphaerulina musiva, the cause of leaf spot and stem canker. An inoculation protocol that does not rely on stem wounding to achieve infection was recently developed. Using this protocol two experiments were conducted to examine infection biology and disease development in the S. musiva-Populus interaction. In the first experiment non-wounded stems of one moderately resistant clone (NM6 and one susceptible clone (NC11505 were inoculated and examined by scanning electron microscopy at six different times (6 h, 12 h, 24 h, 72 h, 1 week, and 3 weeks post-inoculation. The images indicate that the pathogen appears to enter host tissue through small openings and lenticels and that there are no significant differences in the penetration rate between the moderately resistant (NM6 and susceptible (NC11505 clones at 12 h post-inoculation. In a second experiment a histological comparison of stem cankers for resistant clone DN74 and susceptible clone NC11505 were conducted at three time points (3 weeks, 5 weeks, and 7 weeks post-inoculation. Distinct differences in disease development were apparent between the resistant and susceptible clones at each time point, with the susceptible clone exhibiting a weak and delayed defense response. These results suggest, that following penetration, the pathogen may be able to interfere with the defense response in the susceptible host.

  7. Methodology for designing and manufacturing complex biologically inspired soft robotic fluidic actuators: prosthetic hand case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson-Bean, E; Das, R; McDaid, A

    2016-10-31

    We present a novel methodology for the design and manufacture of complex biologically inspired soft robotic fluidic actuators. The methodology is applied to the design and manufacture of a prosthetic for the hand. Real human hands are scanned to produce a 3D model of a finger, and pneumatic networks are implemented within it to produce a biomimetic bending motion. The finger is then partitioned into material sections, and a genetic algorithm based optimization, using finite element analysis, is employed to discover the optimal material for each section. This is based on two biomimetic performance criteria. Two sets of optimizations using two material sets are performed. Promising optimized material arrangements are fabricated using two techniques to validate the optimization routine, and the fabricated and simulated results are compared. We find that the optimization is successful in producing biomimetic soft robotic fingers and that fabrication of the fingers is possible. Limitations and paths for development are discussed. This methodology can be applied for other fluidic soft robotic devices.

  8. Biology, ecology and control of the Penthaleus species complex (Acari: Penthaleidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umina, Paul A; Hoffmann, Ary A; Weeks, Andrew R

    2004-01-01

    Blue oat mites, Penthaleus spp. (Acari: Penthaleidae), are major agricultural pests in southern Australia and other parts of the world, attacking various pasture, vegetable and crop plants. Management of these mites has been complicated by the recent discovery of three cryptic pest species of Penthaleus, whereas prior research had assumed a single species. The taxonomy, population genetics, ecology, biology and control of the Penthaleus spp. complex are reviewed. Adult Penthaleus have a dark blue-black body approximately 1 mm in length, and eight red-orange legs. Within Australia, they are winter pests completing two or three generations a season, depending on conditions. The summer is passed as diapausing eggs, when long-distance dispersal is thought to occur. The Penthaleus spp. reproduce by thelytokous parthenogenesis, with populations comprising clones that differ ecologically. The three pest Penthaleus spp. differ markedly in their distributions, plant hosts, timing of diapause egg production and response to pesticides, highlighting the need to develop control strategies that consider each species separately. Chemicals are the main weapons used in current control programs, however research continues into alternative more sustainable management options. Host plant resistance, crop rotations, conservation of natural enemies, and improved timing of pesticide application would improve the management of these pests. The most cost-effective and environmentally acceptable means of control will result from the integration of these practices combined with the development of a simple field-based kit to distinguish the different mite species.

  9. A review of human factors challenges of complex adaptive systems: discovering and understanding chaos in human performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karwowski, Waldemar

    2012-12-01

    In this paper, the author explores a need for a greater understanding of the true nature of human-system interactions from the perspective of the theory of complex adaptive systems, including the essence of complexity, emergent properties of system behavior, nonlinear systems dynamics, and deterministic chaos. Human performance, more often than not, constitutes complex adaptive phenomena with emergent properties that exhibit nonlinear dynamical (chaotic) behaviors. The complexity challenges in the design and management of contemporary work systems, including service systems, are explored. Examples of selected applications of the concepts of nonlinear dynamics to the study of human physical performance are provided. Understanding and applications of the concepts of theory of complex adaptive and dynamical systems should significantly improve the effectiveness of human-centered design efforts of a large system of systems. Performance of many contemporary work systems and environments may be sensitive to the initial conditions and may exhibit dynamic nonlinear properties and chaotic system behaviors. Human-centered design of emergent human-system interactions requires application of the theories of nonlinear dynamics and complex adaptive system. The success of future human-systems integration efforts requires the fusion of paradigms, knowledge, design principles, and methodologies of human factors and ergonomics with those of the science of complex adaptive systems as well as modern systems engineering.

  10. Understanding the Complexity of Temperature Dynamics in Xinjiang, China, from Multitemporal Scale and Spatial Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jianhua Xu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on the observed data from 51 meteorological stations during the period from 1958 to 2012 in Xinjiang, China, we investigated the complexity of temperature dynamics from the temporal and spatial perspectives by using a comprehensive approach including the correlation dimension (CD, classical statistics, and geostatistics. The main conclusions are as follows (1 The integer CD values indicate that the temperature dynamics are a complex and chaotic system, which is sensitive to the initial conditions. (2 The complexity of temperature dynamics decreases along with the increase of temporal scale. To describe the temperature dynamics, at least 3 independent variables are needed at daily scale, whereas at least 2 independent variables are needed at monthly, seasonal, and annual scales. (3 The spatial patterns of CD values at different temporal scales indicate that the complex temperature dynamics are derived from the complex landform.

  11. Understanding complex clinical reasoning in infectious diseases for improving clinical decision support design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Roosan; Weir, Charlene R; Jones, Makoto; Del Fiol, Guilherme; Samore, Matthew H

    2015-11-30

    Clinical experts' cognitive mechanisms for managing complexity have implications for the design of future innovative healthcare systems. The purpose of the study is to examine the constituents of decision complexity and explore the cognitive strategies clinicians use to control and adapt to their information environment. We used Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) methods to interview 10 Infectious Disease (ID) experts at the University of Utah and Salt Lake City Veterans Administration Medical Center. Participants were asked to recall a complex, critical and vivid antibiotic-prescribing incident using the Critical Decision Method (CDM), a type of Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA). Using the four iterations of the Critical Decision Method, questions were posed to fully explore the incident, focusing in depth on the clinical components underlying the complexity. Probes were included to assess cognitive and decision strategies used by participants. The following three themes emerged as the constituents of decision complexity experienced by the Infectious Diseases experts: 1) the overall clinical picture does not match the pattern, 2) a lack of comprehension of the situation and 3) dealing with social and emotional pressures such as fear and anxiety. All these factors contribute to decision complexity. These factors almost always occurred together, creating unexpected events and uncertainty in clinical reasoning. Five themes emerged in the analyses of how experts deal with the complexity. Expert clinicians frequently used 1) watchful waiting instead of over- prescribing antibiotics, engaged in 2) theory of mind to project and simulate other practitioners' perspectives, reduced very complex cases into simple 3) heuristics, employed 4) anticipatory thinking to plan and re-plan events and consulted with peers to share knowledge, solicit opinions and 5) seek help on patient cases. The cognitive strategies to deal with decision complexity found in this study have important

  12. Cu(II AND Zn(II COMPLEX COMPOUNDS WITH BIGUANIDES AROMATIC DERIVATIVES. SYNTHESIS, CHARACTERIZATION, BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ticuţa Negreanu-Pîrjol

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we report the synthesis, physical-chemical characterization and antimicrobial activity of some new complex compounds of hetero-aromatic biguanides ligands, chlorhexidine base (CHX and chlorhexidine diacetate (CHXac2 with metallic ions Cu(II and Zn(II, in different molar ratio. The synthesized complexes were characterized by elemental chemical analysis and differential thermal analysis. The stereochemistry of the metallic ions was determined by infrared spectra, UV-Vis, EPR spectroscopy and magnetic susceptibility in the aim to establish the complexes structures. The biological activity of the new complex compounds was identified in solid technique by measuring minimum inhibition diameter of bacterial and fungal culture, against three standard pathogen strains, Escherichia coli ATCC 25922, Staphilococcus aureus ATCC 25923 and Candida albicans ATCC 10231. The results show an increased specific antimicrobial activity for the complexes chlorhexidine:Cu(II 1:1 and 1:2 compared with the one of the Zn(II complexes.

  13. Detecting protein complexes based on a combination of topological and biological properties in protein-protein interaction network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pooja Sharma

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Protein complexes are known to play a major role in controlling cellular activity in a living being. Identifying complexes from raw protein protein interactions (PPIs is an important area of research. Earlier work has been limited mostly to yeast. Such protein complex identification methods, when applied to large human PPIs often give poor performance. We introduce a novel method called CSC to detect protein complexes. The method is evaluated in terms of positive predictive value, sensitivity and accuracy using the datasets of the model organism, yeast and humans. CSC outperforms several other competing algorithms for both organisms. Further, we present a framework to establish the usefulness of CSC in analyzing the influence of a given disease gene in a complex topologically as well as biologically considering eight major association factors. Keywords: Protein complex, Connectivity, Semantic similarity, Contribution

  14. Can a Multimedia Tool Help Students' Learning Performance in Complex Biology Subjects?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koseoglu, Pinar; Efendioglu, Akin

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to determine the effects of multimedia-based biology teaching (Mbio) and teacher-centered biology (TCbio) instruction approaches on learners' biology achievements, as well as their views towards learning approaches. During the research process, an experimental design with two groups, TCbio (n = 22) and Mbio (n =…

  15. Compounds Released from Biomass Deconstruction: Understanding Their Effect on Cellulose Enzyme Hydrolysis and Their Biological Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djioleu, Angele Mezindjou

    The effect of compounds produced during biomass pretreatment on cellulolytic enzyme was investigated. Liquid prehydrolyzates were prepared by pretreating switchgrass using 24 combinations of temperature, time, and sulfuric acid concentration based on a full factorial design. Temperature was varied from 140°C to 180°C; time ranged from 10 to 40 min; and the sulfuric acid concentrations were 0.5% or 1% (v/v). Identified products in the prehydrolyzates included xylose, glucose, hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF), furfural, acetic acid, formic acid, and phenolic compounds at concentration ranging from 0 to 21.4 g/L. Pretreatment conditions significantly affected the concentrations of compounds detected in prehydrolyzates. When assayed in the presence of switchgrass prehydrolyzates against model substrates, activities of cellulase, betaglucosidase, and exoglucanase, were significantly reduced by at least 16%, 31.8%, and 57.8%, respectively, as compared to the control. A strong positive correlation between inhibition of betaglucosidase and concentration of glucose, acetic acid, and furans in prehydrolyzate was established. Exoglucanase inhibition correlated with the presence of phenolic compounds and acetic acid. The prehydrolyzate, prepared at 160°C, 30 min, and 1% acid, was fractionated by centrifugal partition chromatography (CPC) into six fractions; the inhibition effect of these fractions on betaglucosidase and exoglucanase was determined. The initial hydrolysis rate of cellobiose by betaglucosidase was significantly reduced by the CPC sugar-rich fraction; however, exoglucanase was deactivated by the CPC phenolic-rich fraction. Finally, biological activities of water-extracted compounds from sweetgum bark and their effect on cellulase was investigated. It was determined that 12% of solid content of the bark extract could be accounted by phenolic compounds with gallic acid identified as the most concentrated phytochemical. Sweetgum bark extract inhibited Staphylococcus

  16. Technological advances for deciphering the complexity of psychiatric disorders: merging proteomics with cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wesseling, Hendrik; Guest, Paul C; Lago, Santiago G; Bahn, Sabine

    2014-08-01

    Proteomic studies have increased our understanding of the molecular pathways affected in psychiatric disorders. Mass spectrometry and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis analyses of post-mortem brain samples from psychiatric patients have revealed effects on synaptic, cytoskeletal, antioxidant and mitochondrial protein networks. Multiplex immunoassay profiling studies have found alterations in hormones, growth factors, transport and inflammation-related proteins in serum and plasma from living first-onset patients. Despite these advances, there are still difficulties in translating these findings into platforms for improved treatment of patients and for discovery of new drugs with better efficacy and side effect profiles. This review describes how the next phase of proteomic investigations in psychiatry should include stringent replication studies for validation of biomarker candidates and functional follow-up studies which can be used to test the impact on physiological function. All biomarker candidates should now be tested in series with traditional and emerging cell biological approaches. This should include investigations of the effects of post-translational modifications, protein dynamics and network analyses using targeted proteomic approaches. Most importantly, there is still an urgent need for development of disease-relevant cellular models for improved translation of proteomic findings into a means of developing novel drug treatments for patients with these life-altering disorders.

  17. Toward High School Biology: Helping Middle School Students Understand Chemical Reactions and Conservation of Mass in Nonliving and Living Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann-Abell, Cari F.; Koppal, Mary; Roseman, Jo Ellen

    2016-01-01

    Modern biology has become increasingly molecular in nature, requiring students to understand basic chemical concepts. Studies show, however, that many students fail to grasp ideas about atom rearrangement and conservation during chemical reactions or the application of these ideas to biological systems. To help provide students with a better foundation, we used research-based design principles and collaborated in the development of a curricular intervention that applies chemistry ideas to living and nonliving contexts. Six eighth grade teachers and their students participated in a test of the unit during the Spring of 2013. Two of the teachers had used an earlier version of the unit the previous spring. The other four teachers were randomly assigned either to implement the unit or to continue teaching the same content using existing materials. Pre- and posttests were administered, and the data were analyzed using Rasch modeling and hierarchical linear modeling. The results showed that, when controlling for pretest score, gender, language, and ethnicity, students who used the curricular intervention performed better on the posttest than the students using existing materials. Additionally, students who participated in the intervention held fewer misconceptions. These results demonstrate the unit’s promise in improving students’ understanding of the targeted ideas. PMID:27909024

  18. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M. L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project ;The Hand Embodied; (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies.

  19. A comparison of the application of a biological and phenetic species concept in the Hebeloma crustuliniforme complex within a phylogenetic framework

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur Kornelis; Kuyper, T.W.

    2004-01-01

    a major factor. Intercompatibility tests and DNA based phylogenies indicate that most biological species are very closely related and hence provide support for the claim that correspondence between a biological species concept and a phenetic species concept in the H. crustuliniforme complex is not likely...... biological species in that complex. Based on two nuclear sequences, we present a best estimate of the phylogeny of biological species within the complex. Using this phylogeny, on the basis of strict monophyly only two species can be morphologically recognised among 22 biological species. Relaxing......A method is presented to derive an operational phenetic species concept for the Hebeloma crustuliniforme complex in northwestern Europe. The complex was found to consist of at least 22 biological species (intercompatibility groups; ICGs). Almost none of these biological species could be recognised...

  20. Looking at the Complexity of Two Young Children's Understanding of Number

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thom, Jennifer S.; Pirie, Susan E. B.

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents a qualitative study that investigated two third-grade students' understanding of number. The children were videotaped while they worked to record everything they knew about the number, 72. Their artifacts and conversations were then analyzed using the Pirie-Kieren dynamical theory for the growth of mathematical understanding as…

  1. The Complexity in Defining Leadership: How Gifted Students' Backgrounds Influence Their Understanding of Effective Leadership

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Shawon; Sakuma, Satoe; DeVol, Purva

    2015-01-01

    There is no universally accepted definition of what it means to be an effective leader. Individuals understand leadership differently based on their own identities and lived experiences. The purpose of this investigation is to determine how one's ethnicity, class, and gender identities influence their understanding of effective leadership,…

  2. Quantification of biopharmaceuticals and biomarkers in complex biological matrices: a comparison of liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry and ligand binding assays

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bults, Peter; van de Merbel, Nico C; Bischoff, Rainer

    2015-01-01

    The quantification of proteins (biopharmaceuticals or biomarkers) in complex biological samples such as blood plasma requires exquisite sensitivity and selectivity, as all biological matrices contain myriads of proteins that are all made of the same 20 proteinogenic amino acids, notwithstanding

  3. From genotype to EEG endophenotype: a route for post-genomic understanding of complex psychiatric disease?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Geus, E.J.C.

    2010-01-01

    Twin and family studies have shown the importance of biological variation in psychiatric disorders. Heritability estimates vary from 50% to 80% for cognitive disorders, such as schizophrenia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and autism, and from 40% to 65% for affective disorders, such as

  4. Understanding the limits of animal models as predictors of human biology: lessons learned from the sbv IMPROVER Species Translation Challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhrissorrakrai, Kahn; Belcastro, Vincenzo; Bilal, Erhan; Norel, Raquel; Poussin, Carine; Mathis, Carole; Dulize, Rémi H J; Ivanov, Nikolai V; Alexopoulos, Leonidas; Rice, J Jeremy; Peitsch, Manuel C; Stolovitzky, Gustavo; Meyer, Pablo; Hoeng, Julia

    2015-02-15

    Inferring how humans respond to external cues such as drugs, chemicals, viruses or hormones is an essential question in biomedicine. Very often, however, this question cannot be addressed because it is not possible to perform experiments in humans. A reasonable alternative consists of generating responses in animal models and 'translating' those results to humans. The limitations of such translation, however, are far from clear, and systematic assessments of its actual potential are urgently needed. sbv IMPROVER (systems biology verification for Industrial Methodology for PROcess VErification in Research) was designed as a series of challenges to address translatability between humans and rodents. This collaborative crowd-sourcing initiative invited scientists from around the world to apply their own computational methodologies on a multilayer systems biology dataset composed of phosphoproteomics, transcriptomics and cytokine data derived from normal human and rat bronchial epithelial cells exposed in parallel to 52 different stimuli under identical conditions. Our aim was to understand the limits of species-to-species translatability at different levels of biological organization: signaling, transcriptional and release of secreted factors (such as cytokines). Participating teams submitted 49 different solutions across the sub-challenges, two-thirds of which were statistically significantly better than random. Additionally, similar computational methods were found to range widely in their performance within the same challenge, and no single method emerged as a clear winner across all sub-challenges. Finally, computational methods were able to effectively translate some specific stimuli and biological processes in the lung epithelial system, such as DNA synthesis, cytoskeleton and extracellular matrix, translation, immune/inflammation and growth factor/proliferation pathways, better than the expected response similarity between species. pmeyerr@us.ibm.com or Julia

  5. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M.L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2017-01-01

    The term ‘synergy’ – from the Greek synergia – means ‘working together’. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project “The Hand Embodied” (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. PMID:26923030

  6. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M L; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project "The Hand Embodied" (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Understanding psychological stress, its biological processes, and impact on primary headache.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Justin M; Thebarge, Ronald W

    2006-10-01

    Psychological stress is generally acknowledged to be a central contributor to primary headache. Stress results from any challenge or threat, either real or perceived, to normal functioning. The stress response is the body's activation of physiological systems, namely the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, to protect and restore functioning. Chronic activation of the stress response can lead to wear and tear that eventually can predispose an individual to disease. There are multiple ways that stress and headache are closely related. Stress can (a) be a predisposing factor that contributes to headache disorder onset, (b) accelerate the progression of the headache disorder into a chronic condition, and (c) precipitate and exacerbate individual headache episodes. How stress impacts headache is not often understood. However, stress is assumed to affect primary headache by directly impacting pain production and modulation processes at both the peripheral and central levels. Stress can also independently worsen headache-related disability and quality of life. Finally, the headache experience itself can serve as a stressor that compromises an individual's health and well-being. With the prominent role that stress plays in headache, there are implications for the evaluation of stress and the use of stress reduction strategies at the various stages of headache disorder onset and progression. Future directions can help to develop a better empirical understanding of the pattern of the stress and headache connections and the mechanisms that explain the connections. Further research can also examine the interactive effects of stress and other factors that impact headache disorder onset, course, and adjustment.

  8. On understanding creative language : The late positive complex and novel metaphor comprehension

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rataj, Karolina; Przekoracka-Krawczyk, Anna; van der Lubbe, Rob H.J.

    2018-01-01

    Novel metaphoric sentences have repeatedly evoked larger N400 amplitudes than literal sentences, while investigations of the late positive complex (LPC) have brought inconsistent results, with reports of both increased and reduced amplitudes. In two experiments, we examined novel metaphor

  9. Understanding the Role of Context in the Interpretation of Complex Battlespace Intelligence

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Powell, Gerald M; Kokar, Mieczyslaw M; Matheus, Christopher J; Lorenz, David

    2006-01-01

    ... the information and identify critical enemy activities in a timely manner. What makes this information fusion problem particularly difficult is the strong contextual dependency of the interpretation of complex battlespace information...

  10. Understanding and Mitigating the Charging Behavior of Next Generation Complex and Active Spacecraft

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Spacecraft that are fundamentally more complex and higher powered are necessary to expand our scientific missions and take commercial space endeavors to the next...

  11. Entropy as a method to investigate complex biological systems. An alternative view on the biological transition from healthy aging to frailty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberto Siciliano

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Everyone is subject to a process of progressive deterioration of control mechanisms, which supervise the complex network of human physiological functions, reducing the individual ability to adapt to emerging situations of stress or change. In the light of results obtained during the last years, it appears that some of the tools of nonlinear dynamics, first developed for the physical sciences are well suited for studies of biological systems. We believe that, considering the level of order or complexity of the anatomical apparatus by measuring a physical quantity, which is the entropy, we can evaluate the health status or vice versa fragility of a biological system. In particular, a reduction in the entropy value, indicates modification of the structural order with a progressive reduction of functional reserve of the individual, which is associated with a failure to adapt to stress conditions, difficult to be analyzed and documented with a unique traditional biochemical or biomolecular vision. Therefore, in this paper, we present a method that, conceptually combines complexity, disease and aging, alloys Poisson statistics, predictive of the personal level of health, to the entropy value indicating the status of bio-dynamic and functional body, seen as a complex and open thermodynamic system.

  12. Biologically meaningful scents: a framework for understanding predator-prey research across disciplines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, Michael H; Apfelbach, Raimund; Banks, Peter B; Cameron, Elissa Z; Dickman, Chris R; Frank, Anke S K; Jones, Menna E; McGregor, Ian S; McLean, Stuart; Müller-Schwarze, Dietland; Sparrow, Elisa E; Blumstein, Daniel T

    2018-02-01

    Fear of predation is a universal motivator. Because predators hunt using stealth and surprise, there is a widespread ability among prey to assess risk from chemical information - scents - in their environment. Consequently, scents often act as particularly strong modulators of memory and emotions. Recent advances in ecological research and analytical technology are leading to novel ways to use this chemical information to create effective attractants, repellents and anti-anxiolytic compounds for wildlife managers, conservation biologists and health practitioners. However, there is extensive variation in the design, results, and interpretation of studies of olfactory-based risk discrimination. To understand the highly variable literature in this area, we adopt a multi-disciplinary approach and synthesize the latest findings from neurobiology, chemical ecology, and ethology to propose a contemporary framework that accounts for such disparate factors as the time-limited stability of chemicals, highly canalized mechanisms that influence prey responses, and the context within which these scents are detected (e.g. availability of alternative resources, perceived shelter, and ambient physical parameters). This framework helps to account for the wide range of reported responses by prey to predator scents, and explains, paradoxically, how the same individual predator scent can be interpreted as either safe or dangerous to a prey animal depending on how, when and where the cue was deposited. We provide a hypothetical example to illustrate the most common factors that influence how a predator scent (from dingoes, Canis dingo) may both attract and repel the same target organism (kangaroos, Macropus spp.). This framework identifies the catalysts that enable dynamic scents, odours or odorants to be used as attractants as well as deterrents. Because effective scent tools often relate to traumatic memories (fear and/or anxiety) that cause future avoidance, this information may

  13. Assessing the Possibility of Biological Complexity on Other Worlds, with an Estimate of the Occurrence of Complex Life in the Milky Way Galaxy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louis N. Irwin

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Rational speculation about biological evolution on other worlds is one of the outstanding challenges in astrobiology. With the growing confirmation that multiplanetary systems abound in the universe, the prospect that life occurs redundantly throughout the cosmos is gaining widespread support. Given the enormous number of possible abodes for life likely to be discovered on an ongoing basis, the prospect that life could have evolved into complex, macro-organismic communities in at least some cases merits consideration. Toward that end, we here propose a Biological Complexity Index (BCI, designed to provide a quantitative estimate of the relative probability that complex, macro-organismic life forms could have emerged on other worlds. The BCI ranks planets and moons by basic, first-order characteristics detectable with available technology. By our calculation only 11 (~1.7% of the extrasolar planets known to date have a BCI above that of Europa; but by extrapolation, the total of such planets could exceed 100 million in our galaxy alone. This is the first quantitative assessment of the plausibility of complex life throughout the universe based on empirical data. It supports the view that the evolution of complex life on other worlds is rare in frequency but large in absolute number.

  14. Complex formation of blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium) anthocyanins during freeze-drying and its influence on their biological activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correa-Betanzo, Julieta; Padmanabhan, Priya; Corredig, Milena; Subramanian, Jayasankar; Paliyath, Gopinadhan

    2015-03-25

    Biological activity of polyphenols is influenced by their uptake and is highly influenced by their interactions with the food matrix. This study evaluated the complex formation of blueberry polyphenols with fruit matrixes such as pectin and cellulose and their effect on the biological and antiproliferative properties of human colon cell lines HT-29 and CRL 1790. Free or complexed polyphenols were isolated by dialyzing aqueous or methanolic blueberry homogenates. Seven phenolic compounds and thirteen anthocyanins were identified in blueberry extracts. Blueberry extracts showed varying degrees of antioxidant and antiproliferative activities, as well as α-glucosidase activity. Fruit matrix containing cellulose and pectin, or purified polygalacturonic acid and cellulose, did not retain polyphenols and showed very low antioxidant or antiproliferative activities. These findings suggest that interactions between polyphenols and the food matrix may be more complex than a simple association and may play an important role in the bioefficacy of blueberry polyphenols.

  15. Understanding the Complex Relationship between Critical Thinking and Science Reasoning among Undergraduate Thesis Writers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dowd, Jason E; Thompson, Robert J; Schiff, Leslie A; Reynolds, Julie A

    2018-01-01

    Developing critical-thinking and scientific reasoning skills are core learning objectives of science education, but little empirical evidence exists regarding the interrelationships between these constructs. Writing effectively fosters students' development of these constructs, and it offers a unique window into studying how they relate. In this study of undergraduate thesis writing in biology at two universities, we examine how scientific reasoning exhibited in writing (assessed using the Biology Thesis Assessment Protocol) relates to general and specific critical-thinking skills (assessed using the California Critical Thinking Skills Test), and we consider implications for instruction. We find that scientific reasoning in writing is strongly related to inference , while other aspects of science reasoning that emerge in writing (epistemological considerations, writing conventions, etc.) are not significantly related to critical-thinking skills. Science reasoning in writing is not merely a proxy for critical thinking. In linking features of students' writing to their critical-thinking skills, this study 1) provides a bridge to prior work suggesting that engagement in science writing enhances critical thinking and 2) serves as a foundational step for subsequently determining whether instruction focused explicitly on developing critical-thinking skills (particularly inference ) can actually improve students' scientific reasoning in their writing. © 2018 J. E. Dowd et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2018 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  16. Synthesis, spectroscopic and biological studies of transition metal complexes of novel schiff bases derived from cephradine and sugars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naz, N.; Iqbal, M.Z.

    2011-01-01

    Fe(II), Co(II) and Ni(II) metal complexes of novel schiff bases derived from Cephradine and sugars (D-Glucose, L. Arabinose and D-Galactose) were synthesized and characterized by elemental analysis, magnetic susceptibility, thermal analysis, electronic absorption and FT-IR spectral studies. It has been found that schiff bases behave as bi-dentate-ligands forming complexes with 1:2 (metal:ligand) stoichiometry. the neutral nature of the complexes was confirmed by their low conductance values. The biological activities of complexes have been evaluated against two gram negative (Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) and two gram positive (Bacillus subtilis and staphylococcus aureus) bacteria by Agar diffusion disc method. It has been found that the complexes have higher activity as compared to the pure Cephradine against the same bacteria. (author)

  17. Theoretical study of chromophores for biological sensing: Understanding the mechanism of rhodol based multi-chromophoric systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivera-Jacquez, Hector J.; Masunov, Artëm E.

    2018-06-01

    Development of two-photon fluorescent probes can aid in visualizing the cellular environment. Multi-chromophore systems display complex manifolds of electronic transitions, enabling their use for optical sensing applications. Time-Dependent Density Functional Theory (TDDFT) methods allow for accurate predictions of the optical properties. These properties are related to the electronic transitions in the molecules, which include two-photon absorption cross-sections. Here we use TDDFT to understand the mechanism of aza-crown based fluorescent probes for metals sensing applications. Our findings suggest changes in local excitation in the rhodol chromophore between unbound form and when bound to the metal analyte. These changes are caused by a charge transfer from the aza-crown group and pyrazol units toward the rhodol unit. Understanding this mechanism leads to an optimized design with higher two-photon excited fluorescence to be used in medical applications.

  18. Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Web Academy Webinar: Compost from Food Waste: Understanding Soil Chemistry and Soil Biology on a College/University Campus

    Science.gov (United States)

    This page contains information about the Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Web Academy Webinar Series titled Compost from Food Waste:Understanding Soil Chemistry and Soil Biology on a College/University Campus

  19. Exploring the practicing-connections hypothesis: using gesture to support coordination of ideas in understanding a complex statistical concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Son, Ji Y; Ramos, Priscilla; DeWolf, Melissa; Loftus, William; Stigler, James W

    2018-01-01

    In this article, we begin to lay out a framework and approach for studying how students come to understand complex concepts in rich domains. Grounded in theories of embodied cognition, we advance the view that understanding of complex concepts requires students to practice, over time, the coordination of multiple concepts, and the connection of this system of concepts to situations in the world. Specifically, we explore the role that a teacher's gesture might play in supporting students' coordination of two concepts central to understanding in the domain of statistics: mean and standard deviation. In Study 1 we show that university students who have just taken a statistics course nevertheless have difficulty taking both mean and standard deviation into account when thinking about a statistical scenario. In Study 2 we show that presenting the same scenario with an accompanying gesture to represent variation significantly impacts students' interpretation of the scenario. Finally, in Study 3 we present evidence that instructional videos on the internet fail to leverage gesture as a means of facilitating understanding of complex concepts. Taken together, these studies illustrate an approach to translating current theories of cognition into principles that can guide instructional design.

  20. Exploring biological and social networks to better understand and treat diabetes mellitus. Comment on "Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review" by Gosak et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belgardt, Bengt-Frederik; Jarasch, Alexander; Lammert, Eckhard

    2018-03-01

    Improvements and breakthroughs in computational sciences in the last 20 years have paralleled the rapid gain of influence of social networks on our daily life. As timely reviewed by Perc and colleagues [1], understanding and treating complex human diseases, such as type 2 diabetes (T2D), from which already more than 5% of the global population suffer, will necessitate analyzing and understanding the multi-layered and interconnected networks that usually keep physiological functions intact, but are disturbed in disease states. These networks range from intra- and intercellular networks influencing cell behavior (e.g., secretion of insulin in response to food intake and anabolic response to insulin) to social networks influencing human behavior (e.g., food intake and physical activity). This commentary first expands on the background of pancreatic beta cell networks in human health and T2D, briefly introduces exosomes as novel signals exchanged between distant cellular networks, and finally discusses potential pitfalls and chances in network analyses with regards to experimental data acquisition and processing.

  1. Recent advances in the understanding of brown spider venoms: From the biology of spiders to the molecular mechanisms of toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gremski, Luiza Helena; Trevisan-Silva, Dilza; Ferrer, Valéria Pereira; Matsubara, Fernando Hitomi; Meissner, Gabriel Otto; Wille, Ana Carolina Martins; Vuitika, Larissa; Dias-Lopes, Camila; Ullah, Anwar; de Moraes, Fábio Rogério; Chávez-Olórtegui, Carlos; Barbaro, Katia Cristina; Murakami, Mario Tyago; Arni, Raghuvir Krishnaswamy; Senff-Ribeiro, Andrea; Chaim, Olga Meiri; Veiga, Silvio Sanches

    2014-06-01

    The Loxosceles genus spiders (the brown spiders) are encountered in all the continents, and the clinical manifestations following spider bites include skin necrosis with gravitational lesion spreading and occasional systemic manifestations, such as intravascular hemolysis, thrombocytopenia and acute renal failure. Brown spider venoms are complex mixtures of toxins especially enriched in three molecular families: the phospholipases D, astacin-like metalloproteases and Inhibitor Cystine Knot (ICK) peptides. Other toxins with low level of expression also present in the venom include the serine proteases, serine protease inhibitors, hyaluronidases, allergen factors and translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP). The mechanisms by which the Loxosceles venoms act and exert their noxious effects are not fully understood. Except for the brown spider venom phospholipase D, which causes dermonecrosis, hemolysis, thrombocytopenia and renal failure, the pathological activities of the other venom toxins remain unclear. The objective of the present review is to provide insights into the brown spider venoms and loxoscelism based on recent results. These insights include the biology of brown spiders, the clinical features of loxoscelism and the diagnosis and therapy of brown spider bites. Regarding the brown spider venom, this review includes a description of the novel toxins revealed by molecular biology and proteomics techniques, the data regarding three-dimensional toxin structures, and the mechanism of action of these molecules. Finally, the biotechnological applications of the venom components, especially for those toxins reported as recombinant molecules, and the challenges for future study are discussed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Systems Biology for Smart Crops and Agricultural Innovation: Filling the Gaps between Genotype and Phenotype for Complex Traits Linked with Robust Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pathak, Rajesh Kumar; Gupta, Sanjay Mohan; Gaur, Vikram Singh; Pandey, Dinesh

    2015-01-01

    Abstract In recent years, rapid developments in several omics platforms and next generation sequencing technology have generated a huge amount of biological data about plants. Systems biology aims to develop and use well-organized and efficient algorithms, data structure, visualization, and communication tools for the integration of these biological data with the goal of computational modeling and simulation. It studies crop plant systems by systematically perturbing them, checking the gene, protein, and informational pathway responses; integrating these data; and finally, formulating mathematical models that describe the structure of system and its response to individual perturbations. Consequently, systems biology approaches, such as integrative and predictive ones, hold immense potential in understanding of molecular mechanism of agriculturally important complex traits linked to agricultural productivity. This has led to identification of some key genes and proteins involved in networks of pathways involved in input use efficiency, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, photosynthesis efficiency, root, stem and leaf architecture, and nutrient mobilization. The developments in the above fields have made it possible to design smart crops with superior agronomic traits through genetic manipulation of key candidate genes. PMID:26484978

  3. Does constructive neutral evolution play an important role in the origin of cellular complexity? Making sense of the origins and uses of biological complexity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Speijer, Dave

    2011-01-01

    Recently, constructive neutral evolution has been touted as an important concept for the understanding of the emergence of cellular complexity. It has been invoked to help explain the development and retention of, amongst others, RNA splicing, RNA editing and ribosomal and mitochondrial respiratory

  4. Understanding the Complex Dimensions of the Digital Divide: Lessons Learned in the Alaskan Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subramony, Deepak Prem

    2007-01-01

    An ethnographic case study of Inupiat Eskimo in the Alaskan Arctic has provided insights into the complex nature of the sociological issues surrounding equitable access to technology tools and skills, which are referred to as the digital divide. These people can overcome the digital divide if they get the basic ready access to hardware and…

  5. Understanding social behaviour with the help of complexity science (Invited article)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hemelrijk, C.K.

    2002-01-01

    In the study of complexity, a new kind of explanation has been developed for social behaviour. It shows how patterns of social behaviour can arise as a side-effect of the interaction of individuals with their social or physical environment (e.g. by self-organization). This development may influence

  6. Further Understanding of Complex Information Processing in Verbal Adolescents and Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Diane L.; Minshew, Nancy J.; Goldstein, Gerald

    2015-01-01

    More than 20?years ago, Minshew and colleagues proposed the Complex Information Processing model of autism in which the impairment is characterized as a generalized deficit involving multiple modalities and cognitive domains that depend on distributed cortical systems responsible for higher order abilities. Subsequent behavioral work revealed a…

  7. Entropy: A Unifying Path for Understanding Complexity in Natural, Artificial and Social Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-01

    details can be seen. Figure 24 – Rank frequency functions of plays ( Shakespeare ) and books (Dickens) fitted by the generalizations of the...0-387-75888-6]. [4] Tsallis, C. (2009b). Introduction to Nonextensive Statistical Mechanics - Approaching a Complex World. (Springer, New York

  8. Understanding the Complex Processes in Developing Student Teachers' Knowledge about Grammar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svalberg, Agneta M.-L.

    2015-01-01

    This article takes the view that grammar is driven by user choices and is therefore complex and dynamic. This has implications for the teaching of grammar in language teacher education and how teachers' cognitions about grammar, and hence their own grammar teaching, might change. In this small, interpretative study, the participants--students on…

  9. Towards a Better Understanding of Complex Disease: Identifying Endotypes of Childhood Asthma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Complex disease, where the diagnostic criteria cannot distinguish among differing etiologies, is often difficult to diagnose, treat and study due to the inability to classify individuals into suitable subtypes of the disease. Here, we aim to use and compare a combination of met...

  10. Complexity of Geometric Inductive Reasoning Tasks: Contribution to the Understanding of Fluid Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Primi, Ricardo

    2002-01-01

    Created two geometric inductive reasoning matrix tests by manipulating four sources of complexity orthogonally. Results for 313 undergraduates show that fluid intelligence is most strongly associated with the part of the central executive component of working memory that is related to controlled attention processing and selective encoding. (SLD)

  11. Supporting Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Understanding and Coping with Complex Social Emotional Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahlers, Kaitlyn P.; Gabrielsen, Terisa P.; Lewis, Danielle; Brady, Anna M.; Litchford, April

    2017-01-01

    Core deficits in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) center around social communication and behavior. For those with ASD, these deficits complicate the task of learning how to cope with and manage complex social emotional issues. Although individuals with ASD may receive sufficient academic and basic behavioral support in school settings, supports for…

  12. Measurement of Androgen and Estrogen Concentrations in Cord Blood: Accuracy, Biological Interpretation and Applications to Understanding Human Behavioural Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren P Hollier

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Accurately measuring hormone exposure during prenatal life presents a methodological challenge and there is currently no ‘gold standard’ approach. Ideally, circulating fetal hormone levels would be measured at repeated time points during pregnancy. However, it is not currently possible to obtain fetal blood samples without significant risk to the fetus, and therefore surrogate markers of fetal hormone levels must be utilized. Umbilical cord blood can be readily obtained at birth and largely reflects fetal circulation in late gestation. This review examines the accuracy and biological interpretation of the measurement of androgens and estrogens in cord blood. The use of cord blood hormones to understand and investigate human development is then discussed.

  13. Bayesian uncertainty analysis for complex systems biology models: emulation, global parameter searches and evaluation of gene functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vernon, Ian; Liu, Junli; Goldstein, Michael; Rowe, James; Topping, Jen; Lindsey, Keith

    2018-01-02

    Many mathematical models have now been employed across every area of systems biology. These models increasingly involve large numbers of unknown parameters, have complex structure which can result in substantial evaluation time relative to the needs of the analysis, and need to be compared to observed data of various forms. The correct analysis of such models usually requires a global parameter search, over a high dimensional parameter space, that incorporates and respects the most important sources of uncertainty. This can be an extremely difficult task, but it is essential for any meaningful inference or prediction to be made about any biological system. It hence represents a fundamental challenge for the whole of systems biology. Bayesian statistical methodology for the uncertainty analysis of complex models is introduced, which is designed to address the high dimensional global parameter search problem. Bayesian emulators that mimic the systems biology model but which are extremely fast to evaluate are embeded within an iterative history match: an efficient method to search high dimensional spaces within a more formal statistical setting, while incorporating major sources of uncertainty. The approach is demonstrated via application to a model of hormonal crosstalk in Arabidopsis root development, which has 32 rate parameters, for which we identify the sets of rate parameter values that lead to acceptable matches between model output and observed trend data. The multiple insights into the model's structure that this analysis provides are discussed. The methodology is applied to a second related model, and the biological consequences of the resulting comparison, including the evaluation of gene functions, are described. Bayesian uncertainty analysis for complex models using both emulators and history matching is shown to be a powerful technique that can greatly aid the study of a large class of systems biology models. It both provides insight into model behaviour

  14. Complexity in the biological recovery of Tatra Mountain lakes from acidification

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Stuchlík, Evžen; Bitušík, P.; Hardekopf, D.W.; Hořická, Zuzana; Kahounová, M.; Tátosová, J.; Vondrák, Daniel; Dočkalová, Kateřina

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 228, č. 5 (2017), č. článku 184. ISSN 0049-6979 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-09231S Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : phytoplankton * zooplankton * chironomids * oligotrophication * eutrophication Subject RIV: DA - Hydrology ; Limnology OBOR OECD: Marine biology, freshwater biology, limnology Impact factor: 1.702, year: 2016

  15. Research Progress in Oncology. Highlighting and Exploiting the Roles of Several Strategic Proteins in Understanding Cancer Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Odiba Arome S.

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Although almost all biological processes are mediated by a variety of proteins, it is important to bring to spotlight recent experimental and clinical research advances that had their focus on highlighting and taking advantage of the roles of several strategic proteins in order to gain more understanding of cancer biology. Proteins have a major stake in the initiation, progression, sustenance and completion of cellular processes, and have also demonstrated their vital roles in cancer processes. The characteristic functions of proteins and modified proteins have been utilized in the understanding and treatment of cancer. Recent insights in such roles and applications include linker histone H1.2 in the compaction of chromatin and gene silencing via the recognition of H3K27me3; c-Jun with Fra-2/c-Fos in the promotion of aggressive tumour phenotypes in tongue cancer; the use of sodium channelinhibiting agents targeting the transmembrane protein in breast, colon and prostate cancer; SET-mediated activities; protein interaction networks in glioma; Gpnmb significance as a biomarker; β-carbolines inhibition on Wnt/β-catenin signaling; p53 mutants co-opt chromatin pathways; Bone morphogenetic protein 4 as regulator of the behaviors of cancer cell; Brain-Expressed X-linked (BEX proteins in human cancers; targeting CDK4/6 including protein kinases to make a reversal of multidrug resistance in sarcoma. In-depth knowledge of Proteomics will go a long way in helping us uncover a lot more strategies that will help us in the long fight against cancer.

  16. From technological advances to biological understanding: The main steps toward high-precision RT in breast cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leonardi, Maria Cristina; Ricotti, Rosalinda; Dicuonzo, Samantha; Cattani, Federica; Morra, Anna; Dell'Acqua, Veronica; Orecchia, Roberto; Jereczek-Fossa, Barbara Alicja

    2016-10-01

    Radiotherapy improves local control in breast cancer (BC) patients which increases overall survival in the long term. Improvements in treatment planning and delivery and a greater understanding of BC behaviour have laid the groundwork for high-precision radiotherapy, which is bound to further improve the therapeutic index. Precise identification of target volumes, better coverage and dose homogeneity have had a positive impact on toxicity and local control. The conformity of treatment dose due to three-dimensional radiotherapy and new techniques such as intensity modulated radiotherapy makes it possible to spare surrounding normal tissue. The widespread use of dose-volume constraints and histograms have increased awareness of toxicity. Real time image guidance has improved geometric precision and accuracy, together with the implementation of quality assurance programs. Advances in the precision of radiotherapy is also based on the choice of the appropriate fractionation and approach. Adaptive radiotherapy is not only a technical concept, but is also a biological concept based on the knowledge that different types of BC have distinctive patterns of locoregional spread. A greater understanding of cancer biology helps in choosing the treatment best suited to a particular situation. Biomarkers predictive of response play a crucial role. The combination of radiotherapy with molecular targeted therapies may enhance radiosensitivity, thus increasing the cytotoxic effects and improving treatment response. The appropriateness of an alternative fractionation, partial breast irradiation, dose escalating/de-escalating approaches, the extent of nodal irradiation have been examined for all the BC subtypes. The broadened concept of adaptive radiotherapy is vital to high-precision treatments. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    the overarching scientific questions outlined in this essay can help advance both scientific understanding and ... Āyurveda which proclaimed over a thousand years ago that its claim to ..... traditions since a very long time past. The arts thus ...

  18. Complex Problem Solving in Radiologic Technology: Understanding the Roles of Experience, Reflective Judgment, and Workplace Culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yates, Jennifer L.

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this research study was to explore the process of learning and development of problem solving skills in radiologic technologists. The researcher sought to understand the nature of difficult problems encountered in clinical practice, to identify specific learning practices leading to the development of professional expertise, and to…

  19. Techniques to better understand complex epikarst hydrogeology and contaminant transport in telogenetic karst settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    The movement of autogenic recharge through the shallow epikarstic zone in soil-mantled karst aquifers is important in understanding recharge areas and rates, groundwater storage, and contaminant transport processes. The groundwater flow in agricultural karst areas, such as Kentucky’s Pennyroyal Plat...

  20. Understanding social complexity within the wildland urban interface: A new species of human habitation? Environmental Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Travis B. Paveglio; Pamela J. Jakes; Matthew S. Carroll; Daniel R. Williams

    2009-01-01

    The lack of knowledge regarding social diversity in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) or an in-depth understanding of the ways people living there interact to address common problems is concerning, perhaps even dangerous, given that community action is necessary for successful wildland fire preparedness and natural resource management activities. In this article, we...

  1. Application of Biologically-Based Lumping To Investigate the Toxicological Interactions of a Complex Gasoline Mixture

    Science.gov (United States)

    People are often exposed to complex mixtures of environmental chemicals such as gasoline, tobacco smoke, water contaminants, or food additives. However, investigators have often considered complex mixtures as one lumped entity. Valuable information can be obtained from these exp...

  2. Synthesis, spectral studies and biological evaluation of 2-aminonicotinic acid metal complexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawaz, Muhammad; Abbasi, Muhammad Waseem; Hisaindee, Soleiman; Zaki, Muhammad Javed; Abbas, Hira Fatima; Mengting, Hu; Ahmed, M. Arif

    2016-05-01

    We synthesized 2-aminonicotinic acid (2-ANA) complexes with metals such as Co(II), Fe(III), Ni(II), Mn(II), Zn(II), Ag(I),Cr(III), Cd(II) and Cu(II) in aqueous media. The complexes were characterized and elucidated using FT-IR, UV-Vis, a fluorescence spectrophotometer and thermo gravimetric analysis (TGA). TGA data showed that the stoichiometry of complexes was 1:2 metal/ligand except for Ag(I) and Mn(II) where the ratio was 1:1. The metal complexes showed varied antibacterial, fungicidal and nematicidal activities. The silver and zinc complexes showed highest activity against Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus licheniformis respectively. Fusarium oxysporum was highly susceptible to nickel and copper complexes whereas Macrophomina phaseolina was completely inert to the complexes. The silver and cadmium complexes were effective against the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne javanica.

  3. Synthesis, spectral studies and biological evaluation of 2-aminonicotinic acid metal complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawaz, Muhammad; Abbasi, Muhammad Waseem; Hisaindee, Soleiman; Zaki, Muhammad Javed; Abbas, Hira Fatima; Mengting, Hu; Ahmed, M Arif

    2016-05-15

    We synthesized 2-aminonicotinic acid (2-ANA) complexes with metals such as Co(II), Fe(III), Ni(II), Mn(II), Zn(II), Ag(I),Cr(III), Cd(II) and Cu(II) in aqueous media. The complexes were characterized and elucidated using FT-IR, UV-Vis, a fluorescence spectrophotometer and thermo gravimetric analysis (TGA). TGA data showed that the stoichiometry of complexes was 1:2 metal/ligand except for Ag(I) and Mn(II) where the ratio was 1:1. The metal complexes showed varied antibacterial, fungicidal and nematicidal activities. The silver and zinc complexes showed highest activity against Bacillus subtilis and Bacillus licheniformis respectively. Fusarium oxysporum was highly susceptible to nickel and copper complexes whereas Macrophomina phaseolina was completely inert to the complexes. The silver and cadmium complexes were effective against the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne javanica. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Contemporary Leadership Theories. Enhancing the Understanding of the Complexity, Subjectivity and Dynamic of Leadership

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Winkler, Ingo

    This book provides a comprehensive overview of basic theoretical approaches of today's leadership research. These approaches conceive leadership as an interactive and complex process. They stress the significance of the individual perception for developing and forming leadership relations....... Leadership is understood as product of complex social relationships embedded in the logic and dynamic of the social system. The book discusses theoretical approaches from top leadership journals, but also addresses various alternatives that are suitable to challenge mainstream leadership research....... It includes attributional and psychodynamic approaches, charismatic leadership theories, and theoretical approaches that define leader-member relations in terms of exchange relations leadership under symbolic and political perspectives, in the light of role theory and as process of social learning....

  5. Understanding the complexity of biopsychosocial factors in the public health epidemic of overweight and obesity

    OpenAIRE

    Rosenbaum, Diane L; White, Kamila S

    2016-01-01

    Obesity is a complex and multifaceted public health problem. This commentary reflects on a new theoretical model of obesity (i.e. Homeostatic Theory of Obesity proposed by Marks), and calls for additional research to examine biopsychosocial factors that may be of importance in developing interventions that promote long-term maintenance of weight loss and in developing obesity prevention programs. Furthermore, we discuss the role of socioeconomic factors in obesity and call for interdisciplina...

  6. Eating disorder emergencies: understanding the medical complexities of the hospitalized eating disordered patient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartwright, Martina M

    2004-12-01

    Eating disorders are maladaptive eating behaviors that typically develop in adolescence and early adulthood. Psychiatric maladies and comorbid conditions, especially insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, frequently co-exist with eating disorders. Serious medical complications affecting all organs and tissues can develop and result in numerous emergent hospitalizations. This article reviews the pathophysiologies of anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and orthorexia nervosa and discusses the complexities associated with the treatment of medical complications seen in these patients.

  7. Using mLearning and MOOCs to Understand Chaos, Emergence, and Complexity in Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    deWaard, Inge; Abajian, Sean; Gallagher, Michael Sean; Hogue, Rebecca; Keskin, Nilgun; Koutropoulos, Apostolos; Rodriguez, Osvaldo C.

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, we look at how the massive open online course (MOOC) format developed by connectivist researchers and enthusiasts can help analyze the complexity, emergence, and chaos at work in the field of education today. We do this through the prism of a MobiMOOC, a six-week course focusing on mLearning that ran from April to May 2011. MobiMOOC…

  8. Models for Understanding Student Thinking using Data from Complex Computerized Science Tasks

    OpenAIRE

    LaMar, Michelle

    2014-01-01

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS Lead States, 2013) define performance targets which will require assessment tasks that can integrate discipline knowledge and cross-cutting ideas with the practices of science. Complex computerized tasks will likely play a large role in assessing these standards, but many questions remain about how best to make use of such tasks within a psychometric framework (National Research Council, 2014). This dissertation explores the use of a more extensive...

  9. Understanding and revisiting the most complex perovskite system via atomistic simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yali; Xu, Bin; Xu, Changsong; Ren, Wei; Bellaiche, Laurent

    2018-05-01

    A first-principles-based effective Hamiltonian is developed and used, along with direct ab initio techniques, to investigate finite-temperature properties of the system commonly coined the most complex perovskite, that is NaNbO3. Such simulations successfully reproduce the existence of seven different phases in its phase diagram. The decomposition of the total energy of this effective Hamiltonian into different terms, altogether with the values of the parameters associated with these terms, also allow us to shed some light into puzzling features of such a compound. Examples include revealing the microscopic reasons of why R 3 c is its ground state and why it solely adopts in-phase tiltings at high temperatures versus complex nanotwins for intermediate temperatures. The results of the computations also call for a revisiting of the so-called P ,R , and S states, in the sense that an unexpected and previously overlooked inhomogeneous electrical polarization is numerically found in the P state while complex tiltings associated with the simultaneous condensation of several k points are predicted for the controversial R and S phases.

  10. Understanding the determinants of problem-solving behavior in a complex environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casner, Stephen A.

    1994-01-01

    It is often argued that problem-solving behavior in a complex environment is determined as much by the features of the environment as by the goals of the problem solver. This article explores a technique to determine the extent to which measured features of a complex environment influence problem-solving behavior observed within that environment. In this study, the technique is used to determine how complex flight deck and air traffic control environment influences the strategies used by airline pilots when controlling the flight path of a modern jetliner. Data collected aboard 16 commercial flights are used to measure selected features of the task environment. A record of the pilots' problem-solving behavior is analyzed to determine to what extent behavior is adapted to the environmental features that were measured. The results suggest that the measured features of the environment account for as much as half of the variability in the pilots' problem-solving behavior and provide estimates on the probable effects of each environmental feature.

  11. Douglas Hanahan: The daunting complexity of cancer: understanding the battlefield is a step towards winning the war

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN. Geneva

    2014-01-01

    The Inaugural Grace-CERN Lecture The daunting complexity of cancer: understanding the battlefield is a step towards winning the war  Douglas Hanahan, Ph.D. Director, Swiss Institute for Experimental Cancer Research (ISREC)  Professor of Molecular Oncology, School of Life Sciences, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) Vice Director, Swiss Cancer Center Lausanne Synopsis (version francaise ci-dessous) Cancer is a disease with hundreds of variations, both in affected organs and in responses to different therapies.  Modern human cancer research is producing an avalanche of data about the distinctive genetic aberrations of its specific types, further accentuating the diversity and vast complexity of the disease. There is hope that elucidating its mechanisms will lead to more informed and more effective therapeutic strategies.  Understanding the enemy is paramount, and yet tumors arising in different organs can be so different as to de...

  12. Understanding the biological effects of thorium in human cells and animals and developing efficient approaches for its decorporation and mitigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kumar, Amit; Ali, Manjoor; Pandey, Badri N.

    2016-01-01

    Thorium-232 (Th) is being realized as a potential source of nuclear fuel for meeting long-term energy generation in India/other nations. In view of utilizing Th, it is hoped that mining, extraction, purification, back-end processing and disposal would increase significantly in near future. Therefore, understanding the biological effects of Th would enable its efficient utilization with adequate human health protection. Biological half-life and associated health effects of Th govern by its speciation, bio-kinetics, radiation decay and organ-specific accumulation due to Fe-like behaviour inside the body system. Our animal studies showed that Th mainly accumulates in liver and bone, in contrast to the accumulation of uranium in kidney. Cell culture experiments were performed to study the binding/internalization mechanism of Th (IV) with human liver cells (HepG2). Experiments using HepG2 cells suggested the role of transferrin (Tf), a blood protein in Th internalization. Recently, our in vitro study observed that the low concentration of Th nitrate induced proliferation in HepG2 through IGF-1R pathway. This study may have relevance to prevent early effects of Th using IGF-1 receptor-specific inhibitor. One of the major goals of our research group is to develop biological approaches for efficient decorporation of Th from liver. In this direction, liposomal form of DTPA has been optimized to effectively deliver DTPA to the liver. Testing of liposomal-DTPA in Th injected animal showed significant enhancement in removal of Th from liver and blood as compared to non-liposomal DTPA. Using ex-vivo human erythrocytes hemolysis assay and in whole blood condition, further efforts are in-progress to evaluate metal binding molecules in search of more effective decorporating agent than DTPA. In conclusion, this paper would discuss the results on mechanism of biological effects of Th on cells and proteins and newer molecules/approaches for its decorporation for human application

  13. Using a Design Science Perspective to Understand a Complex Design-Based Research Process

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bækgaard, Lars

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of the paper is to demonstrate how a design science perspective can be used to describe and understand a set of related design-based research processes. We describe and analyze a case study in a manner that is inspired by design science. The case study involves the design of modeling......-based research processes. And we argue that a design science perspective may be useful for both researchers and practitioners....... tools and the redesign of an information service in a library. We use a set of guidelines from a design science perspective to organize the description and analysis of the case study. By doing this we demonstrate the usefulness of design science as an analytical tool for understanding related design...

  14. A Diagrammatic Approach to Understanding Complex Eco-Social Interactions in Kathmandu, Nepal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Cynthia. Neudoerffer

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available As part of developing an international network of community-based ecosystem approaches to health, a project was undertaken in a densely populated and socio-economically diverse area of Kathmandu, Nepal. Drawing on hundreds of pages of narrative reports based on surveys, interviews, secondary data, and focus groups by trained Nepalese facilitators, the authors created systemic depictions of relationships between multiple stakeholder groups, ecosystem health, and human health. These were then combined to examine interactions among stakeholders, activities, concerns, perceived needs, and resource states (ecosystem health indicators. These qualitative models have provided useful heuristics for both community members and research scholars to understand the eco-social systems in which they live; many of the strategies developed by the communities and researchers to improve health intuitively drew on this systemic understanding. The diagrams enabled researchers and community participants to explicitly examine relationships and conflicts related to health and environmental issues in their community.

  15. The Impact of Different Instructional Strategies on Students' Understanding about the Cell Cycle in a General Education Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krishnamurthy, Sanjana

    This study investigated the impact of different instructional strategies on students' understanding about the cell cycle in a general education biology course. Although several studies have documented gains in students' cell cycle understanding after instruction, these studies generally use only one instructional method, often without a comparison group. The goal of this study was to learn more about students' misconceptions about the cell cycle and how those ideas change after three different evidence-based learning experiences in undergraduate general education. Undergraduate students in six laboratory sections (n = 24; N = 144) in a large public institution in the western United States were surveyed pre- and post-instruction using a 14-item valid and reliable survey of cell cycle knowledge. Cronbach's alpha for the standard scoring convention was 0.264 and for the alternate scoring convention was 0.360, documenting serious problems with inconsistent validity and reliability of the survey. Operating as though the findings are at least a proxy for actual cell cycle knowledge, score comparisons by groups of interest were explored, including pre- and post-instruction differences among demographic groups of interest and three instructional settings: a bead modeling activity, a role-playing game, and 5E instructional strategy. No significant differences were found across groups of interest or by strategy, but some significant item-level differences were found. Implications and discussion of these shifts is noted in lieu of the literature.

  16. Enacting understanding of inclusion in complex contexts: Classroom practices of South African teachers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petra Engelbrecht

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available While the practice of inclusive education has recently been widely embraced as an ideal model for education, the acceptance of inclusive education practices has not translated into reality in most mainstream classrooms. Despite the fact that education policies in South Africa stipulate that all learners should be provided with the opportunities to participate as far as possible in all classroom activities, the implementation of inclusive education is still hampered by a combination of a lack of resources and the attitudes and actions of the teachers in the classroom. The main purpose of this paper was to develop a deeper understanding of a group of South African teachers' personal understanding about barriers to learning and how their understanding relates to their consequent actions to implement inclusive education in their classrooms. A qualitative research approach placed within a cultural-historical and bio-ecological theoretical framework was used. The findings, in this paper, indicate that the way in which teachers understand a diversity of learning needs is based on the training that they initially received as teachers, which focused on a deficit, individualised approach to barriers to learning and development, as well as contextual challenges, and that both have direct and substantial effects on teachers' classroom practices. As a result, they engage in practices in their classrooms that are less inclusive, by creating dual learning opportunities that are not sufficiently made available for everyone, with the result that every learner is not able to participate fully as an accepted member of their peer group in all classroom activities.

  17. Synthesis and characterization of transition metal complexes derived from some biologically active furoic acid hydrazones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Venkateswar Rao

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Two new physiologically active ligands, N’-2-[(E-1-hydroxy-4-methyl-2-oxo-2H-8-chromenyl ethylidene-2-furan carbohydrazide (HMCFCH and N’-2-[(Z-1-(4-hydroxy-6-methyl-2-oxo-2H-pyranyl ethylidene]-furan carbohydrazide (HMPFCH and their VO(II, Mn(II, Fe(II, Co(II, Ni(II and Cu(II complexes have been prepared. The ligands and the metal complexes have been characterized by elemental analyses, electrical conductance, magnetic susceptibility measurements, UV-Vis, IR, and ESR spectroscopic data. Basing on the above data, Fe(II and Co(II complexes of HMCFCH and HMPFCH have been assigned a dimeric octahedral geometry. VO(II complexes of HMCFCH and HMPFCH have been assigned sulfate bridged dimeric square pyramidal geometry. Mn(II complex of HMCFCH has been assigned a dimeric octahedral geometry, where as Mn(II complex of HMPFCH has been ascribed to monomeric octahedral geometry. Cu(II and Ni(II complexes of HMCFCH have been ascribed to a polymeric structure. Ni(II complex of HMPFCH has been assigned a dimeric square planar geometry. Cu(II complex of HMPFCH has been proposed an octahedral geometry. The ligands and their metal chelates were screened against S. aureus and P. aeruginosa. The ligands and the metal complexes have been found to be active against these microorganisms. The ligands show more activity than the metal complexes.

  18. Emergent nested systems a theory of understanding and influencing complex systems as well as case studies in urban systems

    CERN Document Server

    Walloth, Christian

    2016-01-01

    This book presents a theory as well as methods to understand and to purposively influence complex systems. It suggests a theory of complex systems as nested systems, i. e. systems that enclose other systems and that are simultaneously enclosed by even other systems. According to the theory presented, each enclosing system emerges through time from the generative activities of the systems they enclose. Systems are nested and often emerge unplanned, and every system of high dynamics is enclosed by a system of slower dynamics. An understanding of systems with faster dynamics, which are always guided by systems of slower dynamics, opens up not only new ways to understanding systems, but also to effectively influence them. The aim and subject of this book is to lay out these thoughts and explain their relevance to the purposive development of complex systems, which are exemplified in case studies from an urban system. The interested reader, who is not required to be familiar with system-theoretical concepts or wit...

  19. The Affordable Care Act: a case study for understanding and applying complexity concepts to health care reform.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larkin, D Justin; Swanson, R Chad; Fuller, Spencer; Cortese, Denis A

    2016-02-01

    The current health system in the United States is the result of a history of patchwork policy decisions and cultural assumptions that have led to persistent contradictions in practice, gaps in coverage, unsustainable costs, and inconsistent outcomes. In working toward a more efficient health system, understanding and applying complexity science concepts will allow for policy that better promotes desired outcomes and minimizes the effects of unintended consequences. This paper will consider three applied complexity science concepts in the context of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA): developing a shared vision around reimbursement for value, creating an environment for emergence through simple rules, and embracing transformational leadership at all levels. Transforming the US health system, or any other health system, will be neither easy nor quick. Applying complexity concepts to health reform efforts, however, will facilitate long-term change in all levels, leading to health systems that are more effective, efficient, and equitable. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  20. Leveraging Understanding of Flow of Variable Complex Fluid to Design Better Absorbent Hygiene Products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krautkramer, C.; Rend, R. R.

    2014-12-01

    Menstrual flow, which is a result of shedding of uterus endometrium, occurs periodically in sync with a women's hormonal cycle. Management of this flow while allowing women to pursue their normal daily lives is the purpose of many commercial products. Some of these products, e.g. feminine hygiene pads and tampons, utilize porous materials in achieving their goal. In this paper we will demonstrate different phenomena that have been observed in flow of menstrual fluid through these porous materials, share some of the advances made in experimental and analytical study of these phenomena, and also present some of the unsolved challenges and difficulties encountered while studying this kind of flow. Menstrual fluid is generally composed of four main components: blood plasma, blood cells, cervical mucus, and tissue debris. This non-homogeneous, multiphase fluid displays very complex rheological behavior, e. g., yield stress, thixotropy, and visco-elasticity, that varies throughout and between menstrual cycles and among women due to various factors. Flow rates are also highly variable during menstruation and across the population and the rheological properties of the fluid change during the flow into and through the product. In addition to these phenomena, changes to the structure of the porous medium within the product can also be seen due to fouling and/or swelling of the material. This paper will, also, share how the fluid components impact the flow and the consequences for computer simulation, the creation of a simulant fluid and testing methods, and for designing products that best meet consumer needs. We hope to bring to light the challenges of managing this complex flow to meet a basic need of women all over the world. An opportunity exists to apply learnings from research in other disciplines to improve the scientific knowledge related to the flow of this complex fluid through the porous medium that is a sanitary product.

  1. Understanding the Narratives Explaining the Ukrainian Crisis: Identity Divisions and Complex Diversity in Ukraine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Smoor Lodewijk

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The central argument of this paper is that radical and opposing interpretations of the Ukrainian conflict in politics and media should be studied as offspring of broader narratives. These narratives can be better understood by examining the national identity of Ukraine. Since Ukrainian national identity shows a high degree of diversity, it offers a rich source of arguments for any party wanting to give an interpretation of the present Ukrainian crisis. Narratives explaining the crisis often ignore this complex diversity or deliberately use elements from it to construct the ‘desired’ narrative.

  2. Knowledge Discovery in Biological Databases for Revealing Candidate Genes Linked to Complex Phenotypes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassani-Pak, Keywan; Rawlings, Christopher

    2017-06-13

    Genetics and "omics" studies designed to uncover genotype to phenotype relationships often identify large numbers of potential candidate genes, among which the causal genes are hidden. Scientists generally lack the time and technical expertise to review all relevant information available from the literature, from key model species and from a potentially wide range of related biological databases in a variety of data formats with variable quality and coverage. Computational tools are needed for the integration and evaluation of heterogeneous information in order to prioritise candidate genes and components of interaction networks that, if perturbed through potential interventions, have a positive impact on the biological outcome in the whole organism without producing negative side effects. Here we review several bioinformatics tools and databases that play an important role in biological knowledge discovery and candidate gene prioritization. We conclude with several key challenges that need to be addressed in order to facilitate biological knowledge discovery in the future.

  3. Complex-Shaped Microcomponents by the Reactive Conversion of Biological Templates

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sandhage, Kenneth

    2004-01-01

    This project has been aimed at: 1) identifying gas/solid reaction conditions for converting biologically-derived micro/nanotemplates into other oxides without a loss of the starting 3-D shape and fine features, and 2...

  4. Introduction to symposium: Arthropods and wildlife conservation: synergy in complex biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    The symposium will discuss the effects of arthropods and other stressors on wildlife conservation programs. Speakers with affiliations in wildlife biology, parasitology and entomology will be included in the program. Research of national and international interest will be presented....

  5. Can a multimedia tool help students' learning performance in complex biology subjects?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pinar Koseoglu

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the present study was to determine the effects of multimedia-based biology teaching (Mbio and teacher-centered biology (TCbio instruction approaches on learners' biology achievements, as well as their views towards learning approaches. During the research process, an experimental design with two groups, TCbio (n = 22 and Mbio (n = 26, were used. The results of the study proved that the Mbio approach was more effective than the TCbio approach with regard to supporting meaningful learning, academic achievement, enjoyment and motivation. Moreover, the TCbio approach is ineffective in terms of time management, engaging attention, and the need for repetition of subjects. Additionally, the results were discussed in terms of teaching, learning, multimedia design as well as biology teaching/learning.

  6. Simulation of biological flow and transport in complex geometries using embedded boundary/volume-of-fluid methods

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trebotich, David

    2007-01-01

    We have developed a simulation capability to model multiscale flow and transport in complex biological systems based on algorithms and software infrastructure developed under the SciDAC APDEC CET. The foundation of this work is a new hybrid fluid-particle method for modeling polymer fluids in irregular microscale geometries that enables long-time simulation of validation experiments. Both continuum viscoelastic and discrete particle representations have been used to model the constitutive behavior of polymer fluids. Complex flow environment geometries are represented on Cartesian grids using an implicit function. Direct simulation of flow in the irregular geometry is then possible using embedded boundary/volume-of-fluid methods without loss of geometric detail. This capability has been used to simulate biological flows in a variety of application geometries including biomedical microdevices, anatomical structures and porous media

  7. Synthesis, physico-chemical characterization and biological activity of 2-aminobenzimidazole complexes with different metal ions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Podunavac-Kuzmanović Sanja O.

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Complexes of 2-aminobenzimidazole (L with nitrates of cobalt(II nickel(II, copper (II, zinc(II and silver(I were synthesized. The molar ratio metal:ligand in the reaction of the complex formation was 1:2. It should be noticed, that the reaction of all the metal salts yielded bis(ligand complexes of the general formula M(L2(NO32 × nH2O (M=Co, Ni Cu, Zn or Ag; n=0, 1, 2 or 6. The complexes were characterized by elemental analysis of the metal, molar conductivity, magnetic susceptibility measurements and IR spectra. Co(II, Ni(II and Cu(II complexes behave as non-electrolytes, whilst Zn(II and Ag(I are 1:1 electrolytes. Cu(II complex has a square-planar stereochemistry, Ag(I complex is linear, whilst the Co(II, Ni(II and Zn(II complexes have a tetrahedral configuration. In all the complexes ligand is coordinated by participation of the pyridine nitrogen of the benzimidazole ring. The antimicrobial activity of the ligand and its complexes against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Bacillus sp. Staphylococcus aureus and Saccharomyces cerevisiae was investigated. The effect of metal on the ligand antimicrobial activity is discussed.

  8. Synthesis, characterization and biological profile of metal and azo-metal complexes of embelin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Aravindhan

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The present study emphasizes synthesis and bioprofiling of embelin, embelin-metal (EM and embelin-azo-metal (EAM complexes in detail. EM complexes were prepared using pure embelin and d-block transition elements, namely Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, and Zn. Similarly, EAM complexes were synthesized using phenyl azo-embelin with the said transition metals. Embelin, EM, and EAM complexes were subjected to ultra violet visible spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance, electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, thermogravimetric analysis, carbon hydrogen nitrogen sulfur analysis. With regard to bioprofiling, the test complexes were studied for the antioxidant and antimicrobial activities. Results revealed that the prepared EM and EAM complexes form octahedral complexes with embelin with the yield in the range of 45–75%. All the instrumental analyses authenticate the interaction of metals with bidentate embelin through its enolic and quinonic oxygen atoms as [M(Emb2(H2O2]H2O and [M(Emb-Azo2(H2O2]. The antioxidant profile studies suggested that upon complexation with metals, the free radical scavenging activity of embelin reduced significantly. But, with regard to antimicrobial activity, cobalt and nickel embelin complexes displayed>80% growth inhibition in comparison with embelin alone. The hemolytic activity studies suggested that both embelin and the metal complexes are non-hemolytic. The reason for the reduction in antioxidant and an increase in antimicrobial activities were discussed in detail.

  9. Understanding characteristics in multivariate traffic flow time series from complex network structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Ying; Zhang, Shen; Tang, Jinjun; Wang, Xiaofei

    2017-07-01

    Discovering dynamic characteristics in traffic flow is the significant step to design effective traffic managing and controlling strategy for relieving traffic congestion in urban cities. A new method based on complex network theory is proposed to study multivariate traffic flow time series. The data were collected from loop detectors on freeway during a year. In order to construct complex network from original traffic flow, a weighted Froenius norm is adopt to estimate similarity between multivariate time series, and Principal Component Analysis is implemented to determine the weights. We discuss how to select optimal critical threshold for networks at different hour in term of cumulative probability distribution of degree. Furthermore, two statistical properties of networks: normalized network structure entropy and cumulative probability of degree, are utilized to explore hourly variation in traffic flow. The results demonstrate these two statistical quantities express similar pattern to traffic flow parameters with morning and evening peak hours. Accordingly, we detect three traffic states: trough, peak and transitional hours, according to the correlation between two aforementioned properties. The classifying results of states can actually represent hourly fluctuation in traffic flow by analyzing annual average hourly values of traffic volume, occupancy and speed in corresponding hours.

  10. #consumingitall: Understanding The Complex Relationship Between Media Consumption And Eating Behaviors

    OpenAIRE

    Albert, Stephanie L.

    2017-01-01

    Adolescents spend almost nine hours a day engaging with media. As a result, they are confronted with large amounts of obesogenic content that shapes their understanding of what are normal and acceptable eating behaviors. Utilizing primary data collected from a sample of 4,838 low-income, racially and ethnically diverse middle school students in Los Angeles County, I studied the effects of different types of media use (i.e., social media, TV/movies/videos, gaming, music, Internet) on dietary p...

  11. Palladium polypyridyl complexes: synthesis, characterization, DNA interaction and biological activity on Leishmania (L.) mexicana

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Navarro, Maribel [Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Cientificas, Caracas (Venezuela). Centro de Quimica; Betancourt, Adelmo [Universidad de Carabobo, Valencia (Venezuela). Facultad Experimental de Ciencia y Tecnologia. Dept. de Quimica; Hernandez, Clara [Universidad de Carabobo Sede Aragua, Maracay (Venezuela). Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud. Dept. de Ciencias Basicas; Marchan, Edgar [Universidad de Oriente, Cumana (Venezuela). Inst. de Investigaciones en Biomedicina y Ciencias Aplicadas. Nucleo de Sucre

    2008-07-01

    This paper describes the search for new potential chemotherapeutic agents based on transition metal complexes with planar ligands. In this study, palladium polypyridyl complexes were synthesized and characterized by elemental analysis, NMR, UV-VIS and IR spectroscopies. The interaction of the complexes with DNA was also investigated by spectroscopic methods. All metal-to-ligand charge transfer (MLCT) bands of the palladium polypyridyl complexes exhibited hypochromism and red shift in the presence of DNA. The binding constant and viscosity data suggested that the complexes [PdCl{sub 2}(phen)] and [PdCl{sub 2}(phendiamine)] interact with DNA by electrostatic forces. Additionally, these complexes induced an important leishmanistatic effect on L. (L.) mexicana promastigotes at the final concentration of 10 {mu}mol L{sup -1} in 48 h. (author)

  12. Palladium polypyridyl complexes: synthesis, characterization, DNA interaction and biological activity on Leishmania (L.) mexicana

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Navarro, Maribel; Betancourt, Adelmo; Hernandez, Clara; Marchan, Edgar

    2008-01-01

    This paper describes the search for new potential chemotherapeutic agents based on transition metal complexes with planar ligands. In this study, palladium polypyridyl complexes were synthesized and characterized by elemental analysis, NMR, UV-VIS and IR spectroscopies. The interaction of the complexes with DNA was also investigated by spectroscopic methods. All metal-to-ligand charge transfer (MLCT) bands of the palladium polypyridyl complexes exhibited hypochromism and red shift in the presence of DNA. The binding constant and viscosity data suggested that the complexes [PdCl 2 (phen)] and [PdCl 2 (phendiamine)] interact with DNA by electrostatic forces. Additionally, these complexes induced an important leishmanistatic effect on L. (L.) mexicana promastigotes at the final concentration of 10 μmol L -1 in 48 h. (author)

  13. Understanding the fate and biological effects of Ag- and TiO2-nanoparticles in the environment: The quest for advanced analytics and interdisciplinary concepts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schaumann, Gabriele E.; Philippe, Allan; Bundschuh, Mirco; Metreveli, George; Klitzke, Sondra; Rakcheev, Denis; Grün, Alexandra

    2015-01-01

    Engineered inorganic nanoparticles (EINP) from consumers' products and industrial applications, especially silver and titanium dioxide nanoparticles (NP), are emitted into the aquatic and terrestrial environments in increasing amounts. However, the current knowledge on their environmental fate and biological effects is diverse and renders reliable predictions complicated. This review critically evaluates existing knowledge on colloidal aging mechanisms, biological functioning and transport of Ag NP and TiO 2 NP in water and soil and it discusses challenges for concepts, experimental approaches and analytical methods in order to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the processes linking NP fate and effects. Ag NP undergo dissolution and oxidation with Ag 2 S as a thermodynamically determined endpoint. Nonetheless, Ag NP also undergo colloidal transformations in the nanoparticulate state and may act as carriers for other substances. Ag NP and TiO 2 NP can have adverse biological effects on organisms. Whereas Ag NP reveal higher colloidal stability and mobility, the efficiency of NOM as a stabilizing agent is greater towards TiO 2 NP than towards Ag NP, and multivalent cations can dominate the colloidal behavior over NOM. Many of the past analytical obstacles have been overcome just recently. Single particle ICP-MS based methods in combination with field flow fractionation techniques and hydrodynamic chromatography have the potential to fill the gaps currently hampering a comprehensive understanding of fate and effects also at a low field relevant concentrations. These analytical developments will allow for mechanistically orientated research and transfer to a larger set of EINP. This includes separating processes driven by NP specific properties and bulk chemical properties, categorization of effect-triggering pathways directing the EINP effects towards specific recipients, and identification of dominant environmental parameters triggering fate and effect of

  14. Understanding the fate and biological effects of Ag- and TiO{sub 2}-nanoparticles in the environment: The quest for advanced analytics and interdisciplinary concepts

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaumann, Gabriele E., E-mail: schaumann@uni-landau.de [Universität Koblenz-Landau, Institute for Environmental Sciences, Group of Environmental and Soil Chemistry, Fortstr. 7, D-76829 Landau (Germany); Philippe, Allan, E-mail: philippe@uni-landau.de [Universität Koblenz-Landau, Institute for Environmental Sciences, Group of Environmental and Soil Chemistry, Fortstr. 7, D-76829 Landau (Germany); Bundschuh, Mirco, E-mail: mirco.bundschuh@slu.se [Universität Koblenz-Landau, Institute for Environmental Sciences, Group of Ecotoxicology and Environment, Fortstr. 7, D-76829 Landau (Germany); Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Aquatic Sciences and Assessment, Lennart Hjelms väg 9, SE-75007 Uppsala (Sweden); Metreveli, George, E-mail: metreveli@uni-landau.de [Universität Koblenz-Landau, Institute for Environmental Sciences, Group of Environmental and Soil Chemistry, Fortstr. 7, D-76829 Landau (Germany); Klitzke, Sondra, E-mail: sondra.klitzke@tu-berlin.de [Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Institute of Forest Sciences, Chair of Soil Ecology, 79085 Freiburg i.Br. (Germany); Berlin University of Technology, Institute of Ecology, Department of Soil Science, Ernst-Reuter-Platz 1, D-10587 Berlin (Germany); Rakcheev, Denis, E-mail: rakcheev@uni-landau.de [Universität Koblenz-Landau, Institute for Environmental Sciences, Group of Environmental and Soil Chemistry, Fortstr. 7, D-76829 Landau (Germany); Grün, Alexandra, E-mail: alexg@uni-koblenz.de [Universität Koblenz-Landau, Institute for Integrated Natural Sciences, Dept. of Biology, Universitätsstr. 1, D-56070 Koblenz (Germany); and others

    2015-12-01

    Engineered inorganic nanoparticles (EINP) from consumers' products and industrial applications, especially silver and titanium dioxide nanoparticles (NP), are emitted into the aquatic and terrestrial environments in increasing amounts. However, the current knowledge on their environmental fate and biological effects is diverse and renders reliable predictions complicated. This review critically evaluates existing knowledge on colloidal aging mechanisms, biological functioning and transport of Ag NP and TiO{sub 2} NP in water and soil and it discusses challenges for concepts, experimental approaches and analytical methods in order to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the processes linking NP fate and effects. Ag NP undergo dissolution and oxidation with Ag{sub 2}S as a thermodynamically determined endpoint. Nonetheless, Ag NP also undergo colloidal transformations in the nanoparticulate state and may act as carriers for other substances. Ag NP and TiO{sub 2} NP can have adverse biological effects on organisms. Whereas Ag NP reveal higher colloidal stability and mobility, the efficiency of NOM as a stabilizing agent is greater towards TiO{sub 2} NP than towards Ag NP, and multivalent cations can dominate the colloidal behavior over NOM. Many of the past analytical obstacles have been overcome just recently. Single particle ICP-MS based methods in combination with field flow fractionation techniques and hydrodynamic chromatography have the potential to fill the gaps currently hampering a comprehensive understanding of fate and effects also at a low field relevant concentrations. These analytical developments will allow for mechanistically orientated research and transfer to a larger set of EINP. This includes separating processes driven by NP specific properties and bulk chemical properties, categorization of effect-triggering pathways directing the EINP effects towards specific recipients, and identification of dominant environmental parameters triggering

  15. Three-dimensional models of cancer for pharmacology and cancer cell biology: capturing tumor complexity in vitro/ex vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hickman, John A; Graeser, Ralph; de Hoogt, Ronald; Vidic, Suzana; Brito, Catarina; Gutekunst, Matthias; van der Kuip, Heiko

    2014-09-01

    Cancers are complex and heterogeneous pathological "organs" in a dynamic interplay with their host. Models of human cancer in vitro, used in cancer biology and drug discovery, are generally highly reductionist. These cancer models do not incorporate complexity or heterogeneity. This raises the question as to whether the cancer models' biochemical circuitry (not their genome) represents, with sufficient fidelity, a tumor in situ. Around 95% of new anticancer drugs eventually fail in clinical trial, despite robust indications of activity in existing in vitro pre-clinical models. Innovative models are required that better capture tumor biology. An important feature of all tissues, and tumors, is that cells grow in three dimensions. Advances in generating and characterizing simple and complex (with added stromal components) three-dimensional in vitro models (3D models) are reviewed in this article. The application of stirred bioreactors to permit both scale-up/scale-down of these cancer models and, importantly, methods to permit controlled changes in environment (pH, nutrients, and oxygen) are also described. The challenges of generating thin tumor slices, their utility, and potential advantages and disadvantages are discussed. These in vitro/ex vivo models represent a distinct move to capture the realities of tumor biology in situ, but significant characterization work still remains to be done in order to show that their biochemical circuitry accurately reflects that of a tumor. Copyright © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Application for 3d Scene Understanding in Detecting Discharge of Domesticwaste Along Complex Urban Rivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ninsalam, Y.; Qin, R.; Rekittke, J.

    2016-06-01

    In our study we use 3D scene understanding to detect the discharge of domestic solid waste along an urban river. Solid waste found along the Ciliwung River in the neighbourhoods of Bukit Duri and Kampung Melayu may be attributed to households. This is in part due to inadequate municipal waste infrastructure and services which has caused those living along the river to rely upon it for waste disposal. However, there has been little research to understand the prevalence of household waste along the river. Our aim is to develop a methodology that deploys a low cost sensor to identify point source discharge of solid waste using image classification methods. To demonstrate this we describe the following five-step method: 1) a strip of GoPro images are captured photogrammetrically and processed for dense point cloud generation; 2) depth for each image is generated through a backward projection of the point clouds; 3) a supervised image classification method based on Random Forest classifier is applied on the view dependent red, green, blue and depth (RGB-D) data; 4) point discharge locations of solid waste can then be mapped by projecting the classified images to the 3D point clouds; 5) then the landscape elements are classified into five types, such as vegetation, human settlement, soil, water and solid waste. While this work is still ongoing, the initial results have demonstrated that it is possible to perform quantitative studies that may help reveal and estimate the amount of waste present along the river bank.

  17. Understanding the Complexities of Subnational Incentives in Supporting a National Market for Distributed Photovoltaics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bush, B.; Doris, E.; Getman, D.

    2014-09-01

    Subnational policies pertaining to photovoltaic (PV) systems have increased in volume in recent years and federal incentives are set to be phased out over the next few. Understanding how subnational policies function within and across jurisdictions, thereby impacting PV market development, informs policy decision making. This report was developed for subnational policy-makers and researchers in order to aid the analysis on the function of PV system incentives within the emerging PV deployment market. The analysis presented is based on a 'logic engine,' a database tool using existing state, utility, and local incentives allowing users to see the interrelationships between PV system incentives and parameters, such as geographic location, technology specifications, and financial factors. Depending on how it is queried, the database can yield insights into which combinations of incentives are available and most advantageous to the PV system owner or developer under particular circumstances. This is useful both for individual system developers to identify the most advantageous incentive packages that they qualify for as well as for researchers and policymakers to better understand the patch work of incentives nationwide as well as how they drive the market.

  18. Food, health, and complexity: towards a conceptual understanding to guide collaborative public health action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shannon E. Majowicz

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background What we eat simultaneously impacts our exposure to pathogens, allergens, and contaminants, our nutritional status and body composition, our risks for and the progression of chronic diseases, and other outcomes. Furthermore, what we eat is influenced by a complex web of drivers, including culture, politics, economics, and our built and natural environments. To date, public health initiatives aimed at improving food-related population health outcomes have primarily been developed within ‘practice silos’, and the potential for complex interactions among such initiatives is not well understood. Therefore, our objective was to develop a conceptual model depicting how infectious foodborne illness, food insecurity, dietary contaminants, obesity, and food allergy can be linked via shared drivers, to illustrate potential complex interactions and support future collaboration across public health practice silos. Methods We developed the conceptual model by first conducting a systematic literature search to identify review articles containing schematics that depicted relationships between drivers and the issues of interest. Next, we synthesized drivers into a common model using a modified thematic synthesis approach that combined an inductive thematic analysis and mapping to synthesize findings. Results The literature search yielded 83 relevant references containing 101 schematics. The conceptual model contained 49 shared drivers and 227 interconnections. Each of the five issues was connected to all others. Obesity and food insecurity shared the most drivers (n = 28. Obesity shared several drivers with food allergy (n = 11, infectious foodborne illness (n = 7, and dietary contamination (n = 6. Food insecurity shared several drivers with infectious foodborne illness (n = 9 and dietary contamination (n = 9. Infectious foodborne illness shared drivers with dietary contamination (n = 8. Fewer drivers were

  19. Synthesis, characterization and biological activity of symmetric dinuclear complexes derived from a novel macrocyclic compartmental ligand

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mruthyunjayaswamy, B.H.M.; Ijare, Omkar B.; Jadegoud, Y. [Gulbarga University (India). Dept. of Chemistry]. E-mail: bhmmswamy53@rediffmail.com

    2005-07-15

    A phenol based novel macrocyclic binucleating compartmental ligand N,N-bis(2,6-diiminomethyl-4-methyl-1-hydroxyphenyl)malonoyldicarboxamide was prepared. The complexes were prepared by template method by reacting 2,6-diformyl-4-methylphenol, malonoyl dihydrazide and the metal chlorides of Cu(II), Ni(II), Co(II), Cd(II), Zn(II) and Hg(II) in methanol to get a series of dinuclear complexes. The complexes were characterized by elemental analyses, conductivity measurements, magnetic susceptibility data, IR, UV-Vis, ESR, NMR and FAB mass spectral data. The dinuclear nature of the complexes was confirmed on the basis of elemental analyses, magnetic susceptibility, ESR and FAB mass spectral data. The ligand as well as Cu(II), Ni(II), Co(II) and Zn(II) complexes were tested for their antibacterial and antifungal properties against Escherichia coli, Staphyloccocus aureus, Aspergillus niger and Fusarium oxysporum. Magnetic susceptibility measurements of Cu(II), Ni(II) and Co(II) complexes reveal that these complexes exhibit antiferromagnetic coupling behavior due to the presence of two metal ions in close proximity. FAB mass spectrum of the Cu(II) complex gave a clear evidence for the dinuclear nature. The ligand and the complexes were found to be less active against the tested bacteria, but the ligand alone was found active against the fungus Fusarium oxysporum. (author)

  20. Synthesis, characterization and biological activity of symmetric dinuclear complexes derived from a novel macrocyclic compartmental ligand

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mruthyunjayaswamy, B.H.M.; Ijare, Omkar B.; Jadegoud, Y.

    2005-01-01

    A phenol based novel macrocyclic binucleating compartmental ligand N,N-bis(2,6-diiminomethyl-4-methyl-1-hydroxyphenyl)malonoyldicarboxamide was prepared. The complexes were prepared by template method by reacting 2,6-diformyl-4-methylphenol, malonoyl dihydrazide and the metal chlorides of Cu(II), Ni(II), Co(II), Cd(II), Zn(II) and Hg(II) in methanol to get a series of dinuclear complexes. The complexes were characterized by elemental analyses, conductivity measurements, magnetic susceptibility data, IR, UV-Vis, ESR, NMR and FAB mass spectral data. The dinuclear nature of the complexes was confirmed on the basis of elemental analyses, magnetic susceptibility, ESR and FAB mass spectral data. The ligand as well as Cu(II), Ni(II), Co(II) and Zn(II) complexes were tested for their antibacterial and antifungal properties against Escherichia coli, Staphyloccocus aureus, Aspergillus niger and Fusarium oxysporum. Magnetic susceptibility measurements of Cu(II), Ni(II) and Co(II) complexes reveal that these complexes exhibit antiferromagnetic coupling behavior due to the presence of two metal ions in close proximity. FAB mass spectrum of the Cu(II) complex gave a clear evidence for the dinuclear nature. The ligand and the complexes were found to be less active against the tested bacteria, but the ligand alone was found active against the fungus Fusarium oxysporum. (author)

  1. Radiocharacterization of the 99mTc-rufloxacin complex and biological evaluation in Staphylococcus aureus infected rat model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Syed Qaiser Shah; Muhammad Rafiullah Khan

    2011-01-01

    99m Tc-rufloxacin ( 99m Tc-RUN) complex was prepared by reaction of different amounts of reduced sodium pertechnetate with different amount of Rufloxacin (RUN) antibiotic for the in vivo scintigraphic localization of the Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) infectious foci in Male Wister Rats (MWR) model. The 99m Tc-RUN complex was radiochemically and biologically characterized in terms of radiochemical stability in saline, serum, in vitro binding with S. aureus and biodistribution in artificially infected with S. aureus MWR. The 99m Tc-RUN complex showed stability more than 90% up to 240 min in normal saline with a maximum stability value of 98.10 ± 0.18% at 30 min after reconstitution. At 37 deg C the complex showed in vitro permanence in serum up to 16 h with 13.90% side products during incubation. The 99m Tc-RUN complex showed saturated in vitro binding with S. aureus at different intervals with a maximum uptake value of 71.50%. Infected to normal muscle, infected to inflamed and inflamed to normal muscles ratios were approximately 6.04, 4.31 and 1.40. Based on the stability of the complex in saline, serum, in vitro binding with S. aureus and biodistribution results, the 99m Tc-RUN complex is recommended for in vivo scintigraphic localization of the S. aureus in vivo infectious foci in human. (author)

  2. Syntheses, structural elucidation, thermal properties, theoretical quantum chemical studies (DFT and biological studies of barbituric–hydrazone complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amina A. Soayed

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Condensation of barbituric acid with hydrazine hydrate yielded barbiturichydrazone (L which was characterized using IR, 1H NMR and mass spectra. The Co(II, Ni(II and Cu(II complexes derived from this ligand have been synthesized and structurally characterized by elemental analyses, spectroscopic methods (IR, UV–Vis and ESR and thermal analyses (TGA, DTG and DTA and the structures were further elucidated using quantum chemical density functional theory. Complexes of L were found to have the ML.nH2O stoichiometry with either tetrahedral or octahedral geometry. The ESR data showed the Cu(II complex to be in a tetragonal geometry. Theoretical investigation of the electronic structure of metal complexes at the TD-DFT/B3LYP level of theory has been carried out and discussed. The fundamental vibrational wavenumbers were calculated and a good agreement between observed and scaled calculated wavenumbers was achieved. Thermal studies were performed to deduce the stabilities of the ligand and complexes. Thermodynamic parameters, such as the order of reactions (n, activation energy ΔE∗, enthalpy of reaction ΔH∗ and entropy ΔS∗ were calculated from DTA curves using Horowitz–Metzger method. The ligand L and its complexes have been screened for their antifungal and antibacterial activities and were found to possess better biological activities compared to those of unsubstituted barbituric acid complexes.

  3. Influence of the nucleobase on the physicochemical characteristics and biological activities of Sb{sup V}-ribonucleoside complexes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ferreira, Claudio S.; Demicheli, Cynthia, E-mail: demichel@netuno.lcc.ufmg.b [Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Dept. de Quimica; Rocha, Iara C.M. da; Melo, Maria N. [Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Dept. de Parasitologia; Monte Neto, Rubens L.; Frezard, Frederic [Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), Belo Horizonte, MG (Brazil). Dept. de Fisiologia e Biofisica

    2010-07-01

    The influence of the nucleobase (uracyl, U; cytosine, C; adenine, A; guanine, G) on the physicochemical characteristics and in vitro biological activities of Sb{sup V}-ribonucleoside complexes has been investigated. The 1:1 Sb-U and Sb-C complexes were characterized by NMR and ESI-MS spectroscopies and elemental analysis. The stability constant and the apparent association and dissociation rate constants of 1:1 Sb{sup V}-U, Sb{sup V}-C and Sb{sup V}-A complexes were determined. Although Sb{sup V} most probably binds via oxygen atoms to the same 2' and 3' positions in the different nucleosides, the ribose conformational changes and the physicochemical characteristics of the complex depend on the nucleobase. The nucleobase had a strong influence on the cytotoxicity against macrophages and the antileishmanial activity of the Sb{sup V}-ribonucleoside complexes. The Sb{sup V}-purine complexes were more cytotoxic and more effective against Leishmania chagasi than the Sb{sup V}-pyrimidine complexes, supporting the model that the interaction of Sb{sup V} with purine nucleosides may mediate the antileishmanial activity of pentavalent antimonial drugs. (author)

  4. A systems biology approach to studying Tai Chi, physiological complexity and healthy aging: design and rationale of a pragmatic randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wayne, Peter M; Manor, Brad; Novak, Vera; Costa, Madelena D; Hausdorff, Jeffrey M; Goldberger, Ary L; Ahn, Andrew C; Yeh, Gloria Y; Peng, C-K; Lough, Matthew; Davis, Roger B; Quilty, Mary T; Lipsitz, Lewis A

    2013-01-01

    Aging is typically associated with progressive multi-system impairment that leads to decreased physical and cognitive function and reduced adaptability to stress. Due to its capacity to characterize complex dynamics within and between physiological systems, the emerging field of complex systems biology and its array of quantitative tools show great promise for improving our understanding of aging, monitoring senescence, and providing biomarkers for evaluating novel interventions, including promising mind-body exercises, that treat age-related disease and promote healthy aging. An ongoing, two-arm randomized clinical trial is evaluating the potential of Tai Chi mind-body exercise to attenuate age-related loss of complexity. A total of 60 Tai Chi-naïve healthy older adults (aged 50-79) are being randomized to either six months of Tai Chi training (n=30), or to a waitlist control receiving unaltered usual medical care (n=30). Our primary outcomes are complexity-based measures of heart rate, standing postural sway and gait stride interval dynamics assessed at 3 and 6months. Multiscale entropy and detrended fluctuation analysis are used as entropy- and fractal-based measures of complexity, respectively. Secondary outcomes include measures of physical and psychological function and tests of physiological adaptability also assessed at 3 and 6months. Results of this study may lead to novel biomarkers that help us monitor and understand the physiological processes of aging and explore the potential benefits of Tai Chi and related mind-body exercises for healthy aging. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Nutritional sub-fertility in the dairy cow: towards improved reproductive management through a better biological understanding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friggens, N C; Disenhaus, C; Petit, H V

    2010-07-01

    There has been a significant decline in the reproductive performance of dairy cattle in recent decades. Cows, take longer time to return to the oestrus after calving, have poorer conception rates, and show fewer signs of oestrus. Achieving good reproductive performance is an increasing challenge for the dairy producer. In this study we focus on understanding the overall biological phenomena associated with nutritional sub-fertility rather than the underlying multiplicity of physiological interactions (already described in a number of recent studies). These phenomena are important because they represent the natural adaptations of the animal for dealing with variations in the nutritional environment. They can also be used to monitor and modulate reproductive performance on-farm. There is an underlying trade-off between two aspects of reproduction: investment in the viability of the current calf and investment in future offspring. As the investment in, and viability of, the current calf is related to maternal milk production, we can expect that level of milk production per se has effects on subsequent reproductive performance (investment in future offspring). Lactating cows have a lower proportion of viable embryos, which are of poorer quality, than do non-lactating cows. The same applies to high- compared to medium-genetic merit cows. Another important biological property is the adaptive use of body reserves in support of reproduction. Orchestrated endocrine changes in pregnancy and lactation facilitate the deposition of body lipid during pregnancy and mobilisation in early lactation. When the cow fails to accumulate the reserves she needs to safeguard reproduction she delays committing to further reproductive investment. But how does the cow 'know' that she is failing in energy terms? We argue that the cow does this by 'monitoring' both the body fat mobilisation and body fatness. Excessive body fat mobilisation indicates that current conditions are worse than

  6. Thinking processes of Filipino teachers representation of schema of some biology topics: Its effects to the students conceptual understanding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barquilla, Manuel B.

    2018-01-01

    This study is a qualitative-quantitative research, where the main concern is to investigate Content knowledge representation of Filipino Teachers in their schema (proposition, linear ordering and imagery) of some biology topics. The five biology topics includes: Photosynthesis, Cellular Respiration, human reproductive system, Mendelian genetics and NonMendelian genetics. The study focuses on the six (6) biology teachers and a total of 222 students in their respective classes. Of the Six (6) teachers, three (3) are under the Science curriculum and three (3) under regular curriculum in both public and private schools in Iligan city and Lanao del Norte, Philippines. The study utilizes interpretative case-study method, bracketing method, and concept analysis for qualitative part. For quantitative, it uses a nonparametric statistical tool, Kendall's Tau to determine congruence of students and teachers' concept maps and paired t-test for testing the significant differences of pre-and post-instruction concept maps to determine the effects of students' conceptual understanding before and after the teacher's representation of their schema that requires the teachers' thinking processes. The data were cross-validated with two or more techniques used in the study. The data collection entailed seven (7) months immersion: one (1) month for preliminary phase for the researcher to gain teachers' and students' confidence and the succeeding six (6) months for main observation and data collection. Results indicate that the teacher utilize six methods to construct meaning of concepts, three methods of representing classification, four methods to represent relationships, seven methods to represent transformation and three methods to represent causation in planning and implementing the lessons. They often modify definitions in the textbook and express these in lingua franca to be better understood by the students. Furthermore, the teachers' analogs given to student are sometimes far

  7. APPLICATION FOR 3D SCENE UNDERSTANDING IN DETECTING DISCHARGE OF DOMESTICWASTE ALONG COMPLEX URBAN RIVERS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Ninsalam

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available In our study we use 3D scene understanding to detect the discharge of domestic solid waste along an urban river. Solid waste found along the Ciliwung River in the neighbourhoods of Bukit Duri and Kampung Melayu may be attributed to households. This is in part due to inadequate municipal waste infrastructure and services which has caused those living along the river to rely upon it for waste disposal. However, there has been little research to understand the prevalence of household waste along the river. Our aim is to develop a methodology that deploys a low cost sensor to identify point source discharge of solid waste using image classification methods. To demonstrate this we describe the following five-step method: 1 a strip of GoPro images are captured photogrammetrically and processed for dense point cloud generation; 2 depth for each image is generated through a backward projection of the point clouds; 3 a supervised image classification method based on Random Forest classifier is applied on the view dependent red, green, blue and depth (RGB-D data; 4 point discharge locations of solid waste can then be mapped by projecting the classified images to the 3D point clouds; 5 then the landscape elements are classified into five types, such as vegetation, human settlement, soil, water and solid waste. While this work is still ongoing, the initial results have demonstrated that it is possible to perform quantitative studies that may help reveal and estimate the amount of waste present along the river bank.

  8. Theoretical investigation, biological evaluation and VEGFR2 kinase studies of metal(II) complexes derived from hydrotris(methimazolyl)borate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, S; Mahendiran, D; Srinivasan, T; Mohanraj, G; Kalilur Rahiman, A

    2016-02-01

    The reaction of soft tripodal scorpionate ligand, sodium hydrotris(methimazolyl)borate with M(ClO4)2·6H2O [MMn(II), Ni(II), Cu(II) or Zn(II)] in methanol leads to the cleavage of B-N bond followed by the formation of complexes of the type [M(MeimzH)4](ClO4)2·H2O (1-4), where MeimzH=methimazole. All the complexes were fully characterized by spectro-analytical techniques. The molecular structure of the zinc(II) complex (4) was determined by X-ray crystallography, which supports the observed deboronation reaction in the scorpionate ligand with tetrahedral geometry around zinc(II) ion. The electronic spectra of complexes suggested tetrahedral geometry for manganese(II) and nickel(II) complexes, and square-planar geometry for copper(II) complex. Frontier molecular orbital analysis (HOMO-LUMO) was carried out by B3LYP/6-31G(d) to understand the charge transfer occurring in the molecules. All the complexes exhibit significant antimicrobial activity against Gram (-ve) and Gram (+ve) bacterial as well as fungal strains, which are quite comparable to standard drugs streptomycin and clotrimazole. The copper(II) complex (3) showed excellent free radical scavenging activity against DPPH in all concentration with IC50 value of 30μg/mL, when compared to the other complexes. In the molecular docking studies, all the complexes showed hydrophobic, π-π and hydrogen bonding interactions with BSA. The cytotoxic activity of the complexes against human hepatocellular liver carcinoma (HepG2) cells was assessed by MTT assay, which showed exponential responses toward increasing concentration of complexes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Effects of human serun albumin in some biological properties of rhodium(II complexes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Espósito Breno P.

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available The affinities for human albumin (HSA of five rhodium(II complexes of general formula [Rh2(bridge4] (bridge = acetate, propionate, butyrate, trifluoroacetate and trifluoroacetamidate were determined by spectrophotometry. In the case of the alkylcarboxylates, an inverse correlation of affinity with their liposolubilities was observed. Diffusion of the free or protein-bound complexes into Ehrlich cells in vitro seems to be primarily governed by the hydrophobic character of the complex. The complex [Rh2(tfc4] exhibited affinity towards the protein (K = 214.1 as well as cell partition both in the absence (32.1% and presence (48.6% of HSA. The compound HSA: [Rh2(tfc4] has had its antitumoral action in tumor-bearing Balb-c mice investigated, showing that HSA can be a drug reservoir for the rhodium complex.

  10. FuturICT: Participatory computing to understand and manage our complex world in a more sustainable and resilient way

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helbing, D.; Bishop, S.; Conte, R.; Lukowicz, P.; McCarthy, J. B.

    2012-11-01

    We have built particle accelerators to understand the forces that make up our physical world. Yet, we do not understand the principles underlying our strongly connected, techno-socio-economic systems. We have enabled ubiquitous Internet connectivity and instant, global information access. Yet we do not understand how it impacts our behavior and the evolution of society. To fill the knowledge gaps and keep up with the fast pace at which our world is changing, a Knowledge Accelerator must urgently be created. The financial crisis, international wars, global terror, the spreading of diseases and cyber-crime as well as demographic, technological and environmental change demonstrate that humanity is facing serious challenges. These problems cannot be solved within the traditional paradigms. Moving our attention from a component-oriented view of the world to an interaction-oriented view will allow us to understand the complex systems we have created and the emergent collective phenomena characterising them. This paradigm shift will enable new solutions to long-standing problems, very much as the shift from a geocentric to a heliocentric worldview has facilitated modern physics and the ability to launch satellites. The FuturICT flagship project will develop new science and technology to manage our future in a complex, strongly connected world. For this, it will combine the power of information and communication technology (ICT) with knowledge from the social and complexity sciences. ICT will provide the data to boost the social sciences into a new era. Complexity science will shed new light on the emergent phenomena in socially interactive systems, and the social sciences will provide a better understanding of the opportunities and risks of strongly networked systems, in particular future ICT systems. Hence, the envisaged FuturICT flagship will create new methods and instruments to tackle the challenges of the 21st century. FuturICT could indeed become one of the most

  11. Biological 12C-13C fractionation increases with increasing community-complexity in soil microcosms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, Weijun; Magid, Jakob; Christensen, Søren

    2014-01-01

    -rates and determine the trophic level of organisms in biological systems. While it is widely accepted that 15N-accumulates in natural food-chains, it is disputed to which extent this is the case for C-13. We constructed sand-microcosms inoculated with a dilution series of soil organisms and amended with glucose......Isotope fractionation is a ubiquitous phenomenon in natural ecosystems. When chemical elements move through food chains, natural isotope ratios change because biological processes tend to discriminate against heavier isotopes. This effect can be used to trace flows of matter, estimate process...

  12. The AAA+ proteins Pontin and Reptin enter adult age: from understanding their basic biology to the identification of selective inhibitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matias, Pedro M; Baek, Sung Hee; Bandeiras, Tiago M; Dutta, Anindya; Houry, Walid A; Llorca, Oscar; Rosenbaum, Jean

    2015-01-01

    Pontin and Reptin are related partner proteins belonging to the AAA+ (ATPases Associated with various cellular Activities) family. They are implicated in multiple and seemingly unrelated processes encompassing the regulation of gene transcription, the remodeling of chromatin, DNA damage sensing and repair, and the assembly of protein and ribonucleoprotein complexes, among others. The 2nd International Workshop on Pontin and Reptin took place at the Instituto de Tecnologia Química e Biológica António Xavier in Oeiras, Portugal on October 10-12, 2014, and reported significant new advances on the mechanisms of action of these two AAA+ ATPases. The major points under discussion were related to the mechanisms through which these proteins regulate gene transcription, their roles as co-chaperones, and their involvement in pathophysiology, especially in cancer and ciliary biology and disease. Finally, they may become anticancer drug targets since small chemical inhibitors were shown to produce anti-tumor effects in animal models.

  13. The AAA+ proteins Pontin and Reptin enter adult age: from understanding their basic biology to the identification of selective inhibitors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matias, Pedro M.; Baek, Sung Hee; Bandeiras, Tiago M.; Dutta, Anindya; Houry, Walid A.; Llorca, Oscar; Rosenbaum, Jean

    2015-01-01

    Pontin and Reptin are related partner proteins belonging to the AAA+ (ATPases Associated with various cellular Activities) family. They are implicated in multiple and seemingly unrelated processes encompassing the regulation of gene transcription, the remodeling of chromatin, DNA damage sensing and repair, and the assembly of protein and ribonucleoprotein complexes, among others. The 2nd International Workshop on Pontin and Reptin took place at the Instituto de Tecnologia Química e Biológica António Xavier in Oeiras, Portugal on October 10–12, 2014, and reported significant new advances on the mechanisms of action of these two AAA+ ATPases. The major points under discussion were related to the mechanisms through which these proteins regulate gene transcription, their roles as co-chaperones, and their involvement in pathophysiology, especially in cancer and ciliary biology and disease. Finally, they may become anticancer drug targets since small chemical inhibitors were shown to produce anti-tumor effects in animal models. PMID:25988184

  14. Quantitative disease resistance: to better understand parasite-mediated selection on major histocompatibility complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westerdahl, Helena; Asghar, Muhammad; Hasselquist, Dennis; Bensch, Staffan

    2012-02-07

    We outline a descriptive framework of how candidate alleles of the immune system associate with infectious diseases in natural populations of animals. Three kinds of alleles can be separated when both prevalence of infection and infection intensity are measured--qualitative disease resistance, quantitative disease resistance and susceptibility alleles. Our descriptive framework demonstrates why alleles for quantitative resistance and susceptibility cannot be separated based on prevalence data alone, but are distinguishable on infection intensity. We then present a case study to evaluate a previous finding of a positive association between prevalence of a severe avian malaria infection (GRW2, Plasmodium ashfordi) and a major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I allele (B4b) in great reed warblers Acrocephalus arundinaceus. Using the same dataset, we find that individuals with allele B4b have lower GRW2 infection intensities than individuals without this allele. Therefore, allele B4b provides quantitative resistance rather than increasing susceptibility to infection. This implies that birds carrying B4b can mount an immune response that suppresses the acute-phase GRW2 infection, while birds without this allele cannot and may die. We argue that it is important to determine whether MHC alleles related to infections are advantageous (quantitative and qualitative resistance) or disadvantageous (susceptibility) to obtain a more complete picture of pathogen-mediated balancing selection.

  15. Animals on drugs: understanding the role of pharmaceutical companies in the animal-industrial complex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Twine, Richard

    2013-12-01

    In this paper I revisit previous critiques that I have made of much, though by no means all, bioethical discourse. These pertain to faithfulness to dualistic ontology, a taken-for-granted normative anthropocentrism, and the exclusion of a consideration of how political economy shapes the conditions for bioethical discourse (Twine Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 8(3):285-295, 2005; International Journal of Sociology of Agriculture and Food 16(3):1-18, 2007, 2010). Part of my argument around bioethical dualist ontology is to critique the assumption of a division between the "medical" (human) and "agricultural" (nonhuman) and to show various ways in which they are interrelated. I deepen this analysis with a focus on transnational pharmaceutical companies, with specific attention to their role in enhancing agricultural production through animal drug administration. I employ the topical case of antibiotics in order to speak to current debates in not only the interdisciplinary field of bioethics but also that of animal studies. More generally, the animal-industrial complex (Twine Journal for Critical Animal Studies 10(1):12-39, 2012) is underlined as a highly relevant bioethical object that deserves more conceptual and empirical attention.

  16. Mismatch repair proteins, meiosis, and mice: understanding the complexities of mammalian meiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svetlanov, Anton; Cohen, Paula E

    2004-05-15

    Mammalian meiosis differs from that seen in lower eukaryotes in several respects, not least of which is the added complexity of dealing with chromosomal interactions across a much larger genome (12 MB over 16 chromosome pairs in Saccharomyces cerevisiae compared to 2500 MB over 19 autosome pairs in Mus musculus). Thus, the recombination machinery, while being highly conserved through eukaryotes, has evolved to accommodate such issues to preserve genome integrity and to ensure propagation of the species. One group of highly conserved meiotic regulators is the DNA mismatch repair protein family that, as their name implies, were first identified as proteins that act to repair DNA mismatches that arise primarily during DNA replication. Their function in ensuring chromosomal integrity has also translated into a critical role for this family in meiotic recombination in most sexually reproducing organisms. In mice, targeted deletion of certain family members results in severe consequences for meiotic progression and infertility. This review will focus on the studies involving these mutant mouse models, with occasional comparison to the function of these proteins in other organisms.

  17. Continuity of care in mental health: understanding and measuring a complex phenomenon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burns, T; Catty, J; White, S; Clement, S; Ellis, G; Jones, I R; Lissouba, P; McLaren, S; Rose, D; Wykes, T

    2009-02-01

    Continuity of care is considered by patients and clinicians an essential feature of good quality care in long-term disorders, yet there is general agreement that it is a complex concept. Most policies emphasize it and encourage systems to promote it. Despite this, there is no accepted definition or measure against which to test policies or interventions designed to improve continuity. We aimed to operationalize a multi-axial model of continuity of care and to use factor analysis to determine its validity for severe mental illness. A multi-axial model of continuity of care comprising eight facets was operationalized for quantitative data collection from mental health service users using 32 variables. Of these variables, 22 were subsequently entered into a factor analysis as independent components, using data from a clinical population considered to require long-term consistent care. Factor analysis produced seven independent continuity factors accounting for 62.5% of the total variance. These factors, Experience and Relationship, Regularity, Meeting Needs, Consolidation, Managed Transitions, Care Coordination and Supported Living, were close but not identical to the original theoretical model. We confirmed that continuity of care is multi-factorial. Our seven factors are intuitively meaningful and appear to work in mental health. These factors should be used as a starting-point in research into the determinants and outcomes of continuity of care in long-term disorders.

  18. Understanding complexities in coupled dynamics of human-water and food security

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usmani, M.; Kondal, A.; Lin, L.; Colwell, R. R.; Jutla, A.

    2017-12-01

    Traditional premise of food security is associated with satisfying human hunger by providing sufficient calories to population. Water is the key variable associated with the growth of crops, which is then used as a metric of success for abundance of food across globe. The current framework often negates complex coupled interaction between availability of food nutrients and human well-being (such as productivity, work efficiency, low birth weight, physical and mental growth). Our analysis suggests that 1 in 3 humans suffer from malnutrition across the globe. In last five decades, most of the countries have a decreasing availability trend in at least one of the twenty-three essential food nutrients required for human well-being. We argue that food security can only be achieved if information on use of water for crops and consumption of food must include availability of nutrients for humans. Here, we propose a new concept of "consumptive nutrients" that include constant feedback mechanism between water-human and societal processes- essential for growth, distribution and consumption of food nutrients. Using Ethiopia as a signature rain-fed agricultural region, we will show how decreasing precipitation has led to an increase in crop productivity, but decreased availability of nutrients for humans. This in turn has destabilizing impact on overall regional economy. We will demonstrate why inclusion of nutrients must be a part of discussion for ensuring food security to human population.

  19. Nice to know you: Positive emotions, self-other overlap, and complex understanding in the formation of a new relationship.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waugh, Christian E; Fredrickson, Barbara L

    2006-04-01

    Based on Fredrickson's ((1998). What good are positive emotions? Review of General Psychology, 2, 300-319.; (2001). The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions. American Psychologist, 56, 218-226) broaden-and-build theory and Aron and Aron's ((1986). Love as expansion of the self: Understanding attraction and satisfaction. New York: Hemisphere) self-expansion theory, it was hypothesized that positive emotions broaden people's feelings of self-other overlap in the beginning of a new relationship. In a prospective study of first-year college students, we found that, after 1 week in college, positive emotions predicted increased self-other overlap with new roommates, which in turn predicted a more complex understanding of the roommate. In addition, participants who experienced a high ratio of positive to negative emotions throughout the first month of college reported a greater increase in self-other overlap and complex understanding than participants with a low positivity ratio. Implications for the role of positive emotions in the formation of new relationships are discussed.

  20. Nice to know you: Positive emotions, self–other overlap, and complex understanding in the formation of a new relationship

    Science.gov (United States)

    WAUGH, CHRISTIAN E.; FREDRICKSON, BARBARA L.

    2007-01-01

    Based on Fredrickson's ((1998). What good are positive emotions? Review of General Psychology, 2, 300–319.; (2001). The role of positive emotions in positive psychology: The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions. American Psychologist, 56, 218–226) broaden-and-build theory and Aron and Aron's ((1986). Love as expansion of the self: Understanding attraction and satisfaction. New York: Hemisphere) self-expansion theory, it was hypothesized that positive emotions broaden people's feelings of self–other overlap in the beginning of a new relationship. In a prospective study of first-year college students, we found that, after 1 week in college, positive emotions predicted increased self–other overlap with new roommates, which in turn predicted a more complex understanding of the roommate. In addition, participants who experienced a high ratio of positive to negative emotions throughout the first month of college reported a greater increase in self–other overlap and complex understanding than participants with a low positivity ratio. Implications for the role of positive emotions in the formation of new relationships are discussed. PMID:21691460

  1. Studying the complexity of change: toward an analytical framework for understanding deliberate social-ecological transformations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michele-Lee Moore

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Faced with numerous seemingly intractable social and environmental challenges, many scholars and practitioners are increasingly interested in understanding how to actively engage and transform the existing systems holding such problems in place. Although a variety of analytical models have emerged in recent years, most emphasize either the social or ecological elements of such transformations rather than their coupled nature. To address this, first we have presented a definition of the core elements of a social-ecological system (SES that could potentially be altered in a transformation. Second, we drew on insights about transformation from three branches of literature focused on radical change, i.e., social movements, socio-technical transitions, and social innovation, and gave consideration to the similarities and differences with the current studies by resilience scholars. Drawing on these findings, we have proposed a framework that outlines the process and phases of transformative change in an SES. Future research will be able to utilize the framework as a tool for analyzing the alteration of social-ecological feedbacks, identifying critical barriers and leverage points and assessing the outcome of social-ecological transformations.

  2. Dynamics on and of complex networks applications to biology, computer science, and the social sciences

    CERN Document Server

    Ganguly, Niloy; Mukherjee, Animesh

    2009-01-01

    This self-contained book systematically explores the statistical dynamics on and of complex networks having relevance across a large number of scientific disciplines. The theories related to complex networks are increasingly being used by researchers for their usefulness in harnessing the most difficult problems of a particular discipline. The book is a collection of surveys and cutting-edge research contributions exploring the interdisciplinary relationship of dynamics on and of complex networks. Towards this goal, the work is thematically organized into three main sections: Part I studies th

  3. Co(II) and Cd(II) Complexes Derived from Heterocyclic Schiff-Bases: Synthesis, Structural Characterisation, and Biological Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, Riyadh M.; Yousif, Enaam I.; Al-Jeboori, Mohamad J.

    2013-01-01

    New monomeric cobalt and cadmium complexes with Schiff-bases, namely, N′-[(E)-(3-hydroxy-4-methoxyphenyl)methylidene]furan-2-carbohydrazide (L1) and N′-[(E)-(3-hydroxy-4-methoxyphenyl)methylidene]thiophene-2-carbohydrazide (L2) are reported. Schiff-base ligands L1 and L2 were derived from condensation of 3-hydroxy-4-methoxybenzaldehyde (iso-vanillin) with furan-2-carboxylic acid hydrazide and thiophene-2-carboxylic acid hydrazide, respectively. Complexes of the general formula [M(L)2]Cl2 (where M = Co(II) or Cd(II), L = L1 or L2) have been obtained from the reaction of the corresponding metal chloride with the ligands. The ligands and their metal complexes were characterised by spectroscopic methods (FTIR, UV-Vis, 1H, and 13C NMR spectra), elemental analysis, metal content, magnetic measurement, and conductance. These studies revealed the formation of four-coordinate complexes in which the geometry about metal ion is tetrahedral. Biological activity of the ligands and their metal complexes against gram positive bacterial strain Bacillus (G+) and gram negative bacteria Pseudomonas (G−) revealed that the metal complexes become less resistive to the microbial activities as compared to the free ligands. PMID:24027449

  4. Towards a system level understanding of non-model organisms sampled from the environment: a network biology approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim D Williams

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The acquisition and analysis of datasets including multi-level omics and physiology from non-model species, sampled from field populations, is a formidable challenge, which so far has prevented the application of systems biology approaches. If successful, these could contribute enormously to improving our understanding of how populations of living organisms adapt to environmental stressors relating to, for example, pollution and climate. Here we describe the first application of a network inference approach integrating transcriptional, metabolic and phenotypic information representative of wild populations of the European flounder fish, sampled at seven estuarine locations in northern Europe with different degrees and profiles of chemical contaminants. We identified network modules, whose activity was predictive of environmental exposure and represented a link between molecular and morphometric indices. These sub-networks represented both known and candidate novel adverse outcome pathways representative of several aspects of human liver pathophysiology such as liver hyperplasia, fibrosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. At the molecular level these pathways were linked to TNF alpha, TGF beta, PDGF, AGT and VEGF signalling. More generally, this pioneering study has important implications as it can be applied to model molecular mechanisms of compensatory adaptation to a wide range of scenarios in wild populations.

  5. Recent introduction of an allodapine bee into Fiji: A new model system for understanding biological invasions by pollinators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groom, Scott V C; Tuiwawa, Marika V; Stevens, Mark I; Schwarz, Michael P

    2015-08-01

    Morphology-based studies have suggested a very depauperate bee fauna for islands in the South West Pacific, and recent genetic studies since have indicated an even smaller endemic fauna with many bee species in this region resulting from human-aided dispersal. These introduced species have the potential to both disrupt native pollinator suites as well as augment crop pollination, but for most species the timings of introduction are unknown. We examined the distribution and nesting biology of the long-tongued bee Braunsapis puangensis that was first recorded from Fiji in 2007. This bee has now become widespread in Fiji and both its local abundance and geographical range are likely to increase dramatically. The impacts of this invasion are potentially enormous for agriculture and native ecosystems, but they also provide opportunities for understanding how social insect species adapt to new environments. We outline the major issues associated with this recent invasion and argue that a long-term monitoring study is needed. © 2014 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  6. Towards a system level understanding of non-model organisms sampled from the environment: a network biology approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Tim D; Turan, Nil; Diab, Amer M; Wu, Huifeng; Mackenzie, Carolynn; Bartie, Katie L; Hrydziuszko, Olga; Lyons, Brett P; Stentiford, Grant D; Herbert, John M; Abraham, Joseph K; Katsiadaki, Ioanna; Leaver, Michael J; Taggart, John B; George, Stephen G; Viant, Mark R; Chipman, Kevin J; Falciani, Francesco

    2011-08-01

    The acquisition and analysis of datasets including multi-level omics and physiology from non-model species, sampled from field populations, is a formidable challenge, which so far has prevented the application of systems biology approaches. If successful, these could contribute enormously to improving our understanding of how populations of living organisms adapt to environmental stressors relating to, for example, pollution and climate. Here we describe the first application of a network inference approach integrating transcriptional, metabolic and phenotypic information representative of wild populations of the European flounder fish, sampled at seven estuarine locations in northern Europe with different degrees and profiles of chemical contaminants. We identified network modules, whose activity was predictive of environmental exposure and represented a link between molecular and morphometric indices. These sub-networks represented both known and candidate novel adverse outcome pathways representative of several aspects of human liver pathophysiology such as liver hyperplasia, fibrosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. At the molecular level these pathways were linked to TNF alpha, TGF beta, PDGF, AGT and VEGF signalling. More generally, this pioneering study has important implications as it can be applied to model molecular mechanisms of compensatory adaptation to a wide range of scenarios in wild populations.

  7. RNA-seq in kinetoplastids: A powerful tool for the understanding of the biology and host-pathogen interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patino, Luz Helena; Ramírez, Juan David

    2017-04-01

    The kinetoplastids include a large number of parasites responsible for serious diseases in humans and animals (Leishmania and Trypanosoma brucei) considered endemic in several regions of the world. These parasites are characterized by digenetic life cycles that undergo morphological and genetic changes that allow them to adapt to different microenvironments on their vertebrates and invertebrates hosts. Recent advances in ´omics´ technology, specifically transcriptomics have allowed to reveal aspects associated with such molecular changes. So far, different techniques have been used to evaluate the gene expression profile during the various stages of the life cycle of these parasites and during the host-parasite interactions. However, some of them have serious drawbacks that limit the precise study and full understanding of their transcriptomes. Therefore, recently has been implemented the latest technology (RNA-seq), which overcomes the drawbacks of traditional methods. In this review, studies that so far have used RNA-seq are presented and allowed to expand our knowledge regarding the biology of these parasites and their interactions with their hosts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Understanding the biology of bone sarcoma from early initiating events through late events in metastasis and disease progression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Limin eZhu

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The two most common primary bone malignancies, osteosarcoma and Ewing sarcoma, are both aggressive, highly metastatic cancers that most often strike teens, though both can be found in younger children and adults. Despite distinct origins and pathogenesis, both diseases share several mechanisms of progression and metastasis, including neovascularization, invasion, anoikis resistance, chemoresistance and evasion of the immune response. Some of these processes are well-studies in more common carcinoma models, and the observation from adult diseases may be readily applied to pediatric bone sarcomas. Neovascularization, which includes angiogenesis and vasculogenesis, is a clear example of a process that is likely to be similar between carcinomas and sarcomas, since the responding cells are the same in each case. Chemoresistance mechanisms also may be similar between other cancers and the bone sarcomas. Since osteosarcoma and Ewing sarcoma are mesenchymal in origin, the process of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transformation is largely absent in bone sarcomas, necessitating different approaches to study progression and metastasis in these diseases. One process that is less well-studied in bone sarcomas is dormancy, which allows micrometastatic disease to remain viable but not growing in distant sites – typically the lungs – for months or years before renewing growth to become overt metastatic disease. By understanding the basic biology of these processes, novel therapeutic strategies may be developed that could improve survival in children with osteosarcoma or Ewing sarcoma.

  9. Ebselen, a useful tool for understanding cellular redox biology and a promising drug candidate for use in human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noguchi, Noriko

    2016-04-01

    Ebselen is an organoselenium compound with glutathione peroxidase (GPx)-like hydroperoxide reducing activity. Moreover, ebselen has its own unique reactivity, with functions that GPx does not have, since it reacts with many kinds of thiols other than glutathione. Ebselen may affect the thioredoxin systems, through which it may contribute to regulation of cell function. With high reactivity toward thiols, hydroperoxides, and peroxynitrite, ebselen has been used as a useful tool in research on cellular redox mechanisms. Unlike α-tocopherol, ebselen does not scavenge lipid peroxyl radicals, which is another advantage of ebselen for use as a research tool in comparison with radical scavenging antioxidants. Selenium is not released from the ebselen molecule, which explains the low toxicity of ebselen. To further understand the mechanism of cellular redox biology, it should be interesting to compare the effects of ebselen with that of selenoprotein P, which supplies selenium to GPx. New medical applications of ebselen as a drug candidate for human diseases such as cancer and diabetes mellitus as well as brain stroke and ischemia will be expected. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Measuring the complex permittivity tensor of uniaxial biological materials with coplanar waveguide transmission line

    Science.gov (United States)

    A simple and accurate technique is described for measuring the uniaxial permittivity tensor of biological materials with a coplanar waveguide transmission-line configuration. Permittivity tensor results are presented for several chicken and beef fresh meat samples at 2.45 GHz....

  11. Synthesis, physicochemical studies and biological evaluation of unimetallic and heterobimetallic complexes of hexadentate dihydrazone ligands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fathy A. El Saied

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available A new coordination unimetallic and heterobimetallic complexes of hexadentate N2O4 donor dihydrazone ligands were prepared by the condensation of 4-formyl antipyrine with adipic dihydrazide and succinic dihydrazide. The ligands (1 and (11 and their complexes thoroughly characterized using various analytical, physical and spectroscopic techniques, which indicate a distorted octahedral geometry around the metal ions. The ESR spectra of solid copper(II complexes (2–4 and (12–14 showed axial symmetry with g||>g⊥ > ge, indicating distorted octahedral structure and the presence of the unpaired electron in a d(x2−y2 orbital with significant covalent bond character. The antimicrobial activity results of the metal compounds (2–5, (7, (10, (12–15 and (17 show that, all these complexes exhibit inhibitory moderate to mild effects towards Bacillus subtilis, Escherichia coli and Aspergillus niger.

  12. Synthesis, Characterization, and Biological Activity of Nickel (II and Palladium (II Complex with Pyrrolidine Dithiocarbamate (PDTC

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sk Imadul Islam

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The synthesis of square planar Ni(II and Pd(II complexes with pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC was characterized by elemental, physiochemical, and spectroscopic methods. Two complexes were prepared by the reaction of nickel acetate and palladium acetate with pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC in 1 : 2 molar ratio. The bovine serum albumin (BSA interaction with complexes was examined by absorption and fluorescence spectroscopic techniques at pH 7.4. All the spectral data suggest that coordination of the pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC takes place through the two sulphur atoms in a symmetrical bidentate fashion. All the synthesized compounds were screened for their antimicrobial activity against some species of pathogenic bacteria (Escherichia coli, Vibrio cholerae, Streptococcus pneumonia, and Bacillus cereus. It has been observed that complexes have higher activity than the free ligand.

  13. Metal complexes of the fourth generation quinolone antimicrobial drug gatifloxacin: Synthesis, structure and biological evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadeek, Sadeek A.; El-Shwiniy, Walaa H.

    2010-08-01

    Three metal complexes of the fourth generation quinolone antimicrobial agent gatifloxacin (GFLX) with Y(ΙΙΙ), Zr(ΙV) and U(VΙ) have been prepared and characterized with physicochemical and spectroscopic techniques. In these complexes, gatifloxacin acts as a bidentate deprotonated ligand bound to the metal through the ketone oxygen and a carboxylato oxygen. The complexes are six-coordinated with distorted octahedral geometry. The kinetic parameters for gatifloxacin and the three prepared complexes have been evaluated from TGA curves by using Coats-Redfern (CR) and Horowitz-Metzeger (HM) methods. The calculated bond length and force constant, F(U dbnd O), for the UO 2 bond in uranyl complex are 1.7522 Å and 639.46 N m -1. The antimicrobial activity of the complexes has been tested against microorganisms, three bacterial species, such as Staphylococcus aureus ( S. aureus), Escherichia coli ( E. coli) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa ( P. aeruginosa) and two fungi species, penicillium ( P. rotatum) and trichoderma ( T. sp.), showing that they exhibit higher activity than free ligand.

  14. Template synthesis and characterization of biologically active transition metal complexes comprising 14-membered tetraazamacrocyclic ligand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DHARMPAL SINGH

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available A novel series of complexes of the type [M(C28H24N4X2], whereM = Co(II, Ni(II, Cu(II, Zn(II and Cd(II, X = Cl–, NO3–, CH3COO– and (C28H24N4 corresponds to the tetradentate macrocyclic ligand, were synthe¬sized by template condensation of 1,8-diaminonaphthalene and diacetyl in the presence of divalent metal salts in methanolic medium. The complexes were characterized by elemental analyses, conductance and magnetic measurements, as well as by UV/Vis, NMR, IR and MS spectroscopy. The low values of the molar conductance indicate non-electrolyte type of complexes. Based on these spectral data, a distorted octahedral geometry may be proposed for all of these complexes. All the synthesized macrocyclic complexes were tested for in vitro antibacterial activity against some pathogenic bacterial strains, viz Bacillus cereus, Salmonella typhi, Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. The MIC values shown by the complexes against these bacterial strains were compared with the MIC shown by the standard antibiotics linezolid and cefaclor.

  15. Constant-Distance Mode Nanospray Desorption Electrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry Imaging of Biological Samples with Complex Topography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nguyen, Son N.; Liyu, Andrey V.; Chu, Rosalie K.; Anderton, Christopher R.; Laskin, Julia

    2017-01-17

    A new approach for constant distance mode mass spectrometry imaging of biological samples using nanospray desorption electrospray ionization (nano-DESI MSI) was developed by integrating a shear-force probe with nano-DESI probe. The technical concept and basic instrumental setup as well as general operation of the system are described. Mechanical dampening of resonant oscillations due to the presence of shear forces between the probe and the sample surface enables constant-distance imaging mode via a computer controlled closed feedback loop. The capability of simultaneous chemical and topographic imaging of complex biological samples is demonstrated using living Bacillus Subtilis ATCC 49760 colonies on agar plates. The constant-distance mode nano-DESI MSI enabled imaging of many metabolites including non-ribosomal peptides (surfactin, plipastatin and iturin) and iron-bound heme on the surface of living bacterial colonies ranging in diameter from 10 mm to 13 mm with height variations of up to 0.8 mm above the agar plate. Co-registration of ion images to topographic images provided higher-contrast images. Constant-mode nano-DESI MSI is ideally suited for imaging biological samples of complex topography in their native state.

  16. A Tryptoline Ring-Distortion Strategy Leads to Complex and Diverse Biologically Active Molecules from the Indole Alkaloid Yohimbine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paciaroni, Nicholas G; Ratnayake, Ranjala; Matthews, James H; Norwood, Verrill M; Arnold, Austin C; Dang, Long H; Luesch, Hendrik; Huigens, Robert W

    2017-03-28

    High-throughput screening (HTS) is the primary driver to current drug-discovery efforts. New therapeutic agents that enter the market are a direct reflection of the structurally simple compounds that make up screening libraries. Unlike medically relevant natural products (e.g., morphine), small molecules currently being screened have a low fraction of sp 3 character and few, if any, stereogenic centers. Although simple compounds have been useful in drugging certain biological targets (e.g., protein kinases), more sophisticated targets (e.g., transcription factors) have largely evaded the discovery of new clinical agents from screening collections. Herein, a tryptoline ring-distortion strategy is described that enables the rapid synthesis of 70 complex and diverse compounds from yohimbine (1); an indole alkaloid. The compounds that were synthesized had architecturally complex and unique scaffolds, unlike 1 and other scaffolds. These compounds were subjected to phenotypic screens and reporter gene assays, leading to the identification of new compounds that possessed various biological activities, including antiproliferative activities against cancer cells with functional hypoxia-inducible factors, nitric oxide inhibition, and inhibition and activation of the antioxidant response element. This tryptoline ring-distortion strategy can begin to address diversity problems in screening libraries, while occupying biologically relevant chemical space in areas critical to human health. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  17. High stability and biological activity of the copper(II) complexes of alloferon 1 analogues containing tryptophan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadej, Agnieszka; Kuczer, Mariola; Czarniewska, Elżbieta; Urbański, Arkadiusz; Rosiński, Grzegorz; Kowalik-Jankowska, Teresa

    2016-10-01

    Copper(II) complex formation processes between the alloferon 1 (Allo1) (HGVSGHGQHGVHG) analogues where the tryptophan residue is introducing in the place His residue H1W, H6W, H9W and H12W have been studied by potentiometric, UV-visible, CD and EPR spectroscopic, and MS methods. For all analogues of alloferon 1 complex speciation have been obtained for a 1:1 metal-to-ligand molar ratio and 2:1 of H1W because of precipitation at higher (2:1, 3:1 and 4:1) ratios. At physiological pH7.4 and a 1:1 metal-to-ligand molar ratio the tryptophan analogues of alloferon 1 form the CuH -1 L and/or CuH -2 L complexes with the 4N binding mode. The introduction of tryptophan in place of histidine residues changes the distribution diagram of the complexes formed with the change of pH and their stability constants compared to the respective substituted alanine analogues of alloferon 1. The CuH -1 L, CuH -2 L and CuH -3 L complexes of the tryptophan analogues are more stable from 1 to 5 log units in comparison to those of the alanine analogues. This stabilization of the complexes may result from cation(Cu(II))-π and indole/imidazole ring interactions. The induction of apoptosis in vivo, in Tenebrio molitor cells by the ligands and their copper(II) complexes at pH7.4 was studied. The biological results show that copper(II) ions in vivo did not cause any apparent apoptotic features. The most active were the H12W peptide and Cu(II)-H12W complex formed at pH7.4. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Synthesis characterization and biological evaluation of a novel mixed ligand 99mTc complex as potential brain imaging agent

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rey, A.; Manta, E.; Leon, A.; Papadopoulos, M.; Pirmettis, Y.; Raptopoulou, C.; Chiotellis, E.; Leon, E.; Mallo, L.

    1998-01-01

    One approach in the design of neutral oxotechnetium complexes is based on the simultaneous substitution of a tridentate dianionic ligand and a monodentate monoanionic coligand on a [Tc(V)O] +3 precursor. Following this ''mixed ligand'' concept, a novel 99m Tc complex with N,N-bis(2-mercaptoethyl)-N'N'-diethylethylenediamine as ligand and 1-octanethiol as coligand is prepared and evaluated as potential brain radiopharmaceutical. Preparation of the complex at tracer level was accomplished by using 99m Tc-glucoheptonate as precursor. The substitution was optimized and a coligand/ligand ratio of 5 was selected. Under this conditions the labeling yield was over 80% and a major product (with radiochemical purity > 80%) was isolated by HPLC methods and used for biological evaluation. Chemical characterization at carrier level was developed using the corresponding rhenium complex as structural model. The Re complex was also prepared by substitution method and isolated as a crystalline product. The crystals were characterized by UV-vis and IR spectra and elemental analysis. Results were consistent with the expected ReOLC structure. X ray crystallographic study demonstrated that the complex adopts a distorted trigonal bipyramidal geometry. The basal plane is defined by the SS atoms of the ligand and the oxo group, while the N of the ligand and the S of the colligand occupy the two apical positions. All sulphur atoms underwent ionization leading to the formation of a neutral compound. 99 Tc complex was also prepared. Although it was not isolated due to the small amount of reagents employed, the HPLC profile was identical to the one observed for the rhenium complex suggesting the same chemical structure. Biodistribution in mice demonstrated early brain uptake, fast blood clearance, excretion through hepatobiliary system and a brain/blood ratio that increased significantly with time. (author)

  19. Assessment of a new biological complex efficacy on dysseborrhea, inflammation, and Propionibacterium acnes proliferation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trompezinski S

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Sandra Trompezinski,1 Sophie Weber,1 Benoît Cadars,2 Florence Larue,1 Nathalie Ardiet,1 Marlène Chavagnac-Bonneville,2 Michèle Sayag,2 Eric Jourdan2 1NAOS, Aix-en Provence, 2Direction Scientifique Bioderma (NAOS, Lyon, France Introduction: Acne vulgaris is a common chronic inflammatory disease of the pilosebaceous unit triggered by Propionibacterium acnes. A bakuchiol, Ginkgo biloba extract, and mannitol (BGM complex has been developed to provide patients with acne with a specific dermocosmetic to be used adjunctively with conventional treatments. Objective: The aim of these studies was to assess the antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative potential of BGM complex and its individual compounds as well as its impact on sebum composition. Methods: The antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative potential of BGM complex and its compounds was assessed through in vitro, ex vivo, and clinical studies. The clinical benefit of BGM complex formulated in a cream was assessed in subjects prone to acne through sebum composition analysis and photometric assessments. Results: Results from the studies showed that the BGM complex has significant antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidative properties. At similar concentrations, bakuchiol has up to twice the antioxidative potential than vitamin E. In subjects, BGM complex regulated the sebum composition in acne patients by increasing the level of sapienic and linolenic acid and reducing the level of oleic acid. The reduced number of porphyrins on the skin surface showed that it is also effective against P. acnes. Conclusion: BGM complex provides a complete adjunctive care in patients with acne by targeting etiopathogenic factors of acne: dysseborrhea, inflammation, and P. acnes proliferation. Keywords: acne, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidation, cosmetics, sebum

  20. Flexible automated approach for quantitative liquid handling of complex biological samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palandra, Joe; Weller, David; Hudson, Gary; Li, Jeff; Osgood, Sarah; Hudson, Emily; Zhong, Min; Buchholz, Lisa; Cohen, Lucinda H

    2007-11-01

    A fully automated protein precipitation technique for biological sample preparation has been developed for the quantitation of drugs in various biological matrixes. All liquid handling during sample preparation was automated using a Hamilton MicroLab Star Robotic workstation, which included the preparation of standards and controls from a Watson laboratory information management system generated work list, shaking of 96-well plates, and vacuum application. Processing time is less than 30 s per sample or approximately 45 min per 96-well plate, which is then immediately ready for injection onto an LC-MS/MS system. An overview of the process workflow is discussed, including the software development. Validation data are also provided, including specific liquid class data as well as comparative data of automated vs manual preparation using both quality controls and actual sample data. The efficiencies gained from this automated approach are described.

  1. Genomewide effects of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma in macrophages and dendritic cells--revealing complexity through systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuaranta-Monroy, Ixchelt; Kiss, Mate; Simandi, Zoltan; Nagy, Laszlo

    2015-09-01

    Systems biology approaches have become indispensable tools in biomedical and basic research. These data integrating bioinformatic methods gained prominence after high-throughput technologies became available to investigate complex cellular processes, such as transcriptional regulation and protein-protein interactions, on a scale that had not been studied before. Immunology is one of the medical fields that systems biology impacted profoundly due to the plasticity of cell types involved and the accessibility of a wide range of experimental models. In this review, we summarize the most important recent genomewide studies exploring the function of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ in macrophages and dendritic cells. PPARγ ChIP-seq experiments were performed in adipocytes derived from embryonic stem cells to complement the existing data sets and to provide comparators to macrophage data. Finally, lists of regulated genes generated from such experiments were analysed with bioinformatics and system biology approaches. We show that genomewide studies utilizing high-throughput data acquisition methods made it possible to gain deeper insights into the role of PPARγ in these immune cell types. We also demonstrate that analysis and visualization of data using network-based approaches can be used to identify novel genes and functions regulated by the receptor. The example of PPARγ in macrophages and dendritic cells highlights the crucial importance of systems biology approaches in establishing novel cellular functions for long-known signaling pathways. © 2015 Stichting European Society for Clinical Investigation Journal Foundation.

  2. Filtration device for rapid separation of biological particles from complex matrices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sangil; Naraghi-Arani, Pejman; Liou, Megan

    2018-01-09

    Methods and systems for filtering of biological particles are disclosed. Filtering membranes separate adjacent chambers. Through osmotic or electrokinetic processes, flow of particles is carried out through the filtering membranes. Cells, viruses and cell waste can be filtered depending on the size of the pores of the membrane. A polymer brush can be applied to a surface of the membrane to enhance filtering and prevent fouling.

  3. Electrochemiluminescence from Tunicate, Tunichrome--Metal Complexes and Other Biological Samples (Postprint)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1996-05-17

    terrestrial grass ( Eleusine indica ) was gathered from wooded areas around St Andrew Sound. Several blades of each plant species were crushed with...that live (green) grass (E. indica ) extracts exhibited high solution-phase ECL levels 200 ~ Ill c Cll .. .E .J 0 w c Ill Cll :;: 900 800...Figure 12. Comparison of intrinsic biological ECL from live (green) and dead (brown) terrestrial grass (E. indica ) and liv’ seagrass (T. testudinum

  4. Structural and biological evaluation of some metal complexes of vanillin-4N-(2-pyridyl) thiosemicarbazone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yousef, T. A.; Abu El-Reash, G. M.; Al-Jahdali, M.; El-Rakhawy, El-Bastawesy R.

    2013-12-01

    The synthesis and characterization of Mn(II), Co(II), Ni(II), Cu(II), Zn(II), Cd(II), Hg(II) and U(VI)O2 complexes of vanillin-4N-(2-pyridyl) thiosemicarbazone (H2PVT) are reported. Theoretical calculations have been performed to obtain IR spectra of ligand and its complexes using AM1, Zindo/1, MM+ and PM3, methods. The Schiff base and its metal complexes have been screened for antibacterial Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis and Staphylococcus saprophyticus. H2VPT shows no apparent digestion effect on the egg albumin while Mn(II), Hg(II) and Cu(II) complexes exhibited a considerable digestion effect following the order Cu(II) > Mn(II) > Hg(II). Moreover, Ni(II) and Co(II) complexes revealed strong digestion effect. Fe(II), Mn(II), Cu(II), Zn(II) and Ni(II) acted as metal co- SOD enzyme factors, which are located in different compartments of the cell.

  5. Structural, spectral, DFT and biological studies on macrocyclic mononuclear ruthenium (II) complexes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthukkumar, M.; Kamal, C.; Venkatesh, G.; Kaya, C.; Kaya, S.; Enoch, Israel V. M. V.; Vennila, P.; Rajavel, R.

    2017-11-01

    Macrocyclic mononuclear ruthenium (II) complexes have been synthesized by condensation method [Ru (L1, L2, L3) Cl2] L1 = (C36 H31 N9), L2= (C42H36N8), L3= (C32H32 N8)]. These ruthenium complexes have been established by elemental analyses and spectroscopic techniques (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), 1H- nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), 13C- NMR and Electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS)). The coordination mode of the ligand has been confirmed and the octahedral geometry around the ruthenium ion has been revealed. Binding affinity and binding mode of ruthenium (II) complexes with Bovine serum Albumin (BSA) have been characterized by Emission spectra analysis. UV-Visible and fluorescence spectroscopic techniques have also been utilized to examine the interaction between ligand and its complexes L1, L2, & L3 with BSA. Chemical parameters and molecular structure of Ru (II) complexes L1H, L2H, & L3H have been determined by DFT coupled with B3LYP/6-311G** functional in both the gaseous and aqueous phases.

  6. Spectroscopic characterization of metal complexes of novel Schiff base. Synthesis, thermal and biological activity studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omar, M. M.; Mohamed, Gehad G.; Ibrahim, Amr A.

    2009-07-01

    Novel Schiff base (HL) ligand is prepared via condensation of 4-aminoantipyrine and 2-aminobenzoic acid. The ligand is characterized based on elemental analysis, mass, IR and 1H NMR spectra. Metal complexes are reported and characterized based on elemental analyses, IR, 1H NMR, solid reflectance, magnetic moment, molar conductance and thermal analyses (TGA, DrTGA and DTA). The molar conductance data reveal that all the metal chelates are non-electrolytes. IR spectra show that HL is coordinated to the metal ions in a uninegatively tridentate manner with NNO donor sites of the azomethine N, amino N and deprotonated caroxylic-O. From the magnetic and solid reflectance spectra, it is found that the geometrical structures of these complexes are octahedral. The thermal behaviour of these chelates shows that the hydrated complexes losses water molecules of hydration in the first step followed immediately by decomposition of the anions and ligand molecules in the subsequent steps. The activation thermodynamic parameters, such as, E*, ΔH*, ΔS* and ΔG* are calculated from the DrTG curves using Coats-Redfern method. The synthesized ligands, in comparison to their metal complexes also were screened for their antibacterial activity against bacterial species, Escherichia Coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus Pyogones and Fungi (Candida). The activity data show that the metal complexes to be more potent/antibacterial than the parent Shciff base ligand against one or more bacterial species.

  7. Synthesis, characterization and biological evaluation of ruthenium flavanol complexes against breast cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Ashok Kumar; Saxena, Gunjan; Sahabjada; Arshad, M.

    2017-06-01

    Four Ru(II) DMSO complexes (M1R-M4R) having substituted flavones viz. 3-Hydroxy-2-(4-methoxyphenyl)-4H-chromen-4-one (HL1), 3-Hydroxy-2-(4-nitrophenyl)-4H-chromen-4-one (HL2), 3-Hydroxy-2-(4-dimethylaminophenyl)-4H-chromen-4-one (HL3) and 3-Hydroxy-2-(4-chlorophenyl)-4H-chromen-4-one (HL4) were synthesized and characterized by elemental analysis, IR, UV-Vis, 1H NMR spectroscopies and ESI-MS. The molecular structures of the complexes were investigated by integrated spectroscopic and computational techniques (DFT). Both ligands as well as their complexes were screened for anticancer activities against breast cancer cell lines MCF-7. Cytotoxicity was assayed by MTT [3-(4, 5-dimethyl thiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide] assay. All ligands and their complexes exhibited significant cytotoxic potential of 5-40 μM concentration at incubation period of 24 h. The cell cytotoxicity increased significantly in a concentration-dependent manner. In this series of compounds, HL2 (IC50 17.2 μM) and its complex M2R (IC50 16 μM) induced the highest cytotoxicity.

  8. Alkali Metal Ion Complexes with Phosphates, Nucleotides, Amino Acids, and Related Ligands of Biological Relevance. Their Properties in Solution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crea, Francesco; De Stefano, Concetta; Foti, Claudia; Lando, Gabriele; Milea, Demetrio; Sammartano, Silvio

    2016-01-01

    Alkali metal ions play very important roles in all biological systems, some of them are essential for life. Their concentration depends on several physiological factors and is very variable. For example, sodium concentrations in human fluids vary from quite low (e.g., 8.2 mmol dm(-3) in mature maternal milk) to high values (0.14 mol dm(-3) in blood plasma). While many data on the concentration of Na(+) and K(+) in various fluids are available, the information on other alkali metal cations is scarce. Since many vital functions depend on the network of interactions occurring in various biofluids, this chapter reviews their complex formation with phosphates, nucleotides, amino acids, and related ligands of biological relevance. Literature data on this topic are quite rare if compared to other cations. Generally, the stability of alkali metal ion complexes of organic and inorganic ligands is rather low (usually log K  Na(+) > K(+) > Rb(+) > Cs(+). For example, for citrate it is: log K ML = 0.88, 0.80, 0.48, 0.38, and 0.13 at 25 °C and infinite dilution. Some considerations are made on the main aspects related to the difficulties in the determination of weak complexes. The importance of the alkali metal ion complexes was also studied in the light of modelling natural fluids and in the use of these cations as probes for different processes. Some empirical relationships are proposed for the dependence of the stability constants of Na(+) complexes on the ligand charge, as well as for correlations among log K values of NaL, KL or LiL species (L = generic ligand).

  9. Synthesis, Characterization and Spectral Studies of Noble Heterobinuclear Complexes of Transition Metal Ions and their Biological Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Netra Pal Singh

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Some noble heterobinuclear complexes of transition metal ions with bis(salicylaldehydemalonyl-dihydrazone in the presence of 5-nitroindazole Cu(II / Ni(II- chloride of the type [ML1M‘L2Cl2] or [ML1FeL2Cl2]Cl, where M = Ni(II, Cu(II and M' = Mn(II, Co(II, have been prepared. All the complexes have been characterized by IR, UV vis and EPR spectroscopy, elemental analysis, magnetic moment and molar conductance measurement. Spectral studies and magnetic moment measurement in DMF suggest the covalent nature of the complexes, except the [ML1FeL2Cl2]Cl complex which is 1:1 electrolyte. An octahedral geometry is proposed for M‘ and square planer for M for the heterobinuclear complexes. The low value of magnetic moment and overlapping EPR signals are due to spin crossover since both of the metals have unpaired electrons with same molecular symmetry. The lowering of the magnetic moment has been discussed. The biological activity (antifungal and antibacterial of the represented compounds has been studied.

  10. Synthesis, catalytic and biological activity of novel dinuclear copper complex with Schiff base

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WEI Danyi; LI Ning; LU Gui; YAO Kemin

    2006-01-01

    A novel dinuclear copper complex with tetraglycol aldehyde-phenylalanine Schiff base has been synthesized. It was characterized and formulated as [Cu2L(NO3)]NO3 by elemental analysis,magnetic susceptibility, TG-DTA, IR, EPR and 1H NMR spectra. The obtained complex can be used as a good catalyst for the polymerization of methyl methacrylate (MMA). The optimum polymerization conditions are: MMNcatalyst = 500 (molar ratio); [catalyst] = 7.5×10-3 mol. L-1; dioxane as solvent;80℃; 6 h. Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) with 80% conversion, 7.2×105 viscosity-average molecular weight and 60.5% syndiotacticity was obtained. This complex has also been shown to play an important role in scavenging O-·2.

  11. Structural requirements and biological significance of interactions between peptides and the major histocompatibility complex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grey, H M; Buus, S; Colon, S

    1989-01-01

    Previous studies indicate that T cells recognize a complex between the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) restriction-element and peptide-antigen fragments. Two aspects of this complex formation are considered in this paper: (1) what is the nature of the specificity of the interactions that a...... of binding to Ia (i.e. determinant selection was operative), we found that about 40% of Ia-binding peptides were not immunogenic (i.e. there were also 'holes in the T-cell repertoire')....... responsiveness, we present data that suggest both mechanisms operate in concert with one another. Thus only about 30% of a collection of peptides that in sum represent the sequence of a protein molecule were found to bind to Ia. Although immunogenicity was restricted to those peptides that were capable...

  12. Understanding TR binding to pMHC complexes: how does a TR scan many pMHC complexes yet preferentially bind to one.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javed Mohammed Khan

    Full Text Available Understanding the basis of the binding of a T cell receptor (TR to the peptide-MHC (pMHC complex is essential due to the vital role it plays in adaptive immune response. We describe the use of computed binding (free energy (BE, TR paratope, pMHC epitope, molecular surface electrostatic potential (MSEP and calculated TR docking angle (θ to analyse 61 TR/pMHC crystallographic structures to comprehend TR/pMHC interaction. In doing so, we have successfully demonstrated a novel/rational approach for θ calculation, obtained a linear correlation between BE and θ without any "codon" or amino acid preference, provided an explanation for TR ability to scan many pMHC ligands yet specifically bind one, proposed a mechanism for pMHC recognition by TR leading to T cell activation and illustrated the importance of the peptide in determining TR specificity, challenging the "germline bias" theory.

  13. Phylogenetics and genetic diversity of the Cotesia flavipes complex of parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), biological control agents of lepidopteran stemborers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muirhead, Kate A; Murphy, Nicholas P; Sallam, Nader; Donnellan, Stephen C; Austin, Andrew D

    2012-06-01

    The Cotesia flavipes complex of parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) are economically important for the biological control of lepidopteran stemboring pests associated with gramineous crops. Some members of the complex successfully parasitize numerous stemborer pest species, however certain geographic populations have demonstrated variation in the range of hosts that they parasitize. In addition, the morphology of the complex is highly conserved and considerable confusion surrounds the identity of species and host-associated biotypes. We generated nucleotide sequence data for two mtDNA genes (COI, 16S) and three anonymous nuclear loci (CfBN, CfCN, CfEN) for the C. flavipes complex. To analyze genetic variation and relationships among populations we used (1) concatenated mtDNA and nDNA data, (2) a nDNA multilocus network approach, and (3) two species tree inference methods, i.e. Bayesian estimation of species trees (BEST) and Bayesian inference of species trees from multilocus data with (*)BEAST. All phylogenetic analyses provide strong support for monophyly of the complex and the presence of at least four species, C. chilonis (from China and Japan), C. sesamiae (from Africa), C. flavipes (originating from the Indo-Asia region but introduced into Africa and the New World), and C. nonagriae (from Australia and Papua New Guinea). Haplotype diversity of geographic populations relates to historical biogeographic barriers and biological control introductions, and reflects previous reports of ecological variation in these species. Strong discordance was found between the mitochondrial and nuclear markers in the Papua New Guinea haplotypes, which may be an outcome of hybridization and introgression of C. flavipes and C. nonagriae. The position of Cotesia flavipes from Japan was not well supported in any analysis and was the sister taxon to C. nonagriae (mtDNA, (*)BEAST), C. flavipes (nDNA) or C. flavipes+C. nonagriae (BEST) and, may represent a cryptic species. The

  14. Gaps in college biology students' understanding of photosynthesis: Implications for human constructivist learning theory and college classroom practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffard, Phyllis Baudoin

    1999-11-01

    The main research question of this study was: What gaps in biochemical understanding are revealed by a range of university introductory biology students as they work through a critically acclaimed multimedia program on photosynthesis, and what are the corresponding implications for elaboration of the Ausubel-Novak-Gowin Learning Theory (ANG, now Human Constructivism)? Twelve students, mixed for ability, gender and ethnicity, were recruited from two sections of "Bio 101." Before and after instruction in photosynthesis, in-depth clinical interviews were conducted during which participants completed a range of cognitive tasks such as sorting, concept mapping, explaining and predicting. Some tasks involved interacting with a computer simulation of photosynthesis. This study primarily employed qualitative case study and verbal analysis methods. Verbal analysis of the clinical interviews revealed numerous gaps that were categorized into typologies. The two major categories were propositional gaps and processing gaps. Propositional gaps were evident in development of participants' concepts, links and constructs. Significant among these were conceptual distance gaps and continuity of matter gaps. Gaps such as convention gaps and relative significance gaps seem to be due to naivete in the discipline. Processing gaps included gaps in graphic decoding skills and relevant cognitive habits such as self-monitoring and consulting prior knowledge. Although the gaps were easier to detect and isolate with the above-average participants, all participants showed evidence of at least some of these gaps. Since some gaps are not unexpected at all but the highest literacy levels, not all the gaps identified are to be considered deficiencies. The gaps identified support the attention given by ANG theorists to the role of prior knowledge and metacognition as well as the value of graphic organizers in knowledge construction. In addition, this study revealed numerous gaps in graphic decoding

  15. Thermal and biological evolution of Fe(III)-Sulfanilamide complexes synthesized by green strategy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prajapat, Garima; Rathore, Uma; Gupta, Rama; Bhojak, N.

    2018-05-01

    Sulfonamides belong to a category of sulfadrugs, that are widely used as antibiotic medicines. Their metal complexes, also called Metallodrugs, are known to have diverse pharmacological applications and are significantly used as therapeutic agents for treatment of several human diseases. Fe(III) complexes of two sulfonamides, namely Sulfanilamide and Sulfadiazine have been synthesized by the method of Microwave Assisted Organic Synthesis (MAOS), using acetone as solvent medium. Presence of excellent donor atoms such as N and O, induce these drugs to exhibit a chelating behavior with the metal ion, and to act as bidentate ligands. Both the complexes were found to have four coordinated, tetrahedral geometry with one molecule of water of crystallisation. Thermal decomposition studies were carried out in an inert nitrogen atmosphere by Thermogravimetric (TGA) and Derivative Thermogravimetric (DTA) analysis. Interpretation of thermograms have been done to evaluate various kinetic and thermodynamic parameters, using integral method of Coats and Redfern. The antibacterial activity for both complexes have been screened against E.coli, S. aureus and B. subtilis.

  16. Chemical and biological evaluation of Sm-153 and Ho-166 complexes with tetraethylester of DOTP ( DOTPOEt )

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Forsterová, Michaela; Margues, M. M.; Jandurová, Z.; Gano, L.; Hermann, P.; Melichar, František

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 50, č. 1 (2007), s. 273-273 ISSN 0362-4803 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR 1QS100480501 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10480505 Keywords : Phosphonate Complexes Subject RIV: FR - Pharmacology ; Medidal Chemistry

  17. Reduction enhances yields of nitric oxide trapping by iron-diethyldithiocarbamate complex in biological systems.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vanin, A.F.; Bevers, L.M.; Mikoyan, V.D.; Poltorakov, A.P.; Kubrina, L.N.; Faassen, E. van

    2007-01-01

    The mechanism of NO trapping by iron-diethylthiocarbamate complexes was investigated in cultured cells and animal and plant tissues. Contrary to common belief, the NO radicals are trapped by iron-diethylthiocarbamates not only in ferrous but in ferric state also in the biosystems. When DETC was

  18. Structural biology. Structures of the CRISPR-Cmr complex reveal mode of RNA target positioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Taylor, D.W.; Zhu, Y.; Staals, R.H.J.; Kornfeld, J.E.; Shinkai, A.; Oost, van der J.; Nogales, E.; Doudna, J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Adaptive immunity in bacteria involves RNA-guided surveillance complexes that use CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats)-associated (Cas) proteins together with CRISPR RNAs (crRNAs) to target invasive nucleic acids for degradation. Whereas type I and type II CRISPR-Cas

  19. COMPLEX HOST-PARASITE SYSTEMS IN MARTES: IMPLICATIONS FOR CONSERVATION BIOLOGY OF ENDEMIC FAUNAS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Complex assemblages of hosts and parasites reveal insights about biogeography and ecology and inform us about processes which serve to structure faunal diversity and the biosphere in space and time. Exploring aspects of parasite diversity among martens (species of Martes) and other mustelids reveal...

  20. RYBP and Cbx7 Define Specific Biological Functions of Polycomb Complexes in Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lluis Morey

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The Polycomb repressive complex 1 (PRC1 is required for decisions of stem cell fate. In mouse embryonic stem cells (ESCs, two major variations of PRC1 complex, defined by the mutually exclusive presence of Cbx7 or RYBP, have been identified. Here, we show that although the genomic localization of the Cbx7- and RYBP-containing PRC1 complexes overlaps in certain genes, it can also be mutually exclusive. At the molecular level, Cbx7 is necessary for recruitment of Ring1B to chromatin, whereas RYBP enhances the PRC1 enzymatic activity. Genes occupied by RYBP show lower levels of Ring1B and H2AK119ub and are consequently more highly transcribed than those bound by Cbx7. At the functional level, we show that genes occupied by RYBP are primarily involved in the regulation of metabolism and cell-cycle progression, whereas those bound by Cbx7 predominantly control early-lineage commitment of ESCs. Altogether, our results indicate that different PRC1 subtypes establish a complex pattern of gene regulation that regulates common and nonoverlapping aspects of ESC pluripotency and differentiation.

  1. Studies on the changes of biologically active complexes of sunflower oil, tard, and butter under gamma irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ivanov, A.; Stamatov, D.

    1976-01-01

    Investigations of changes in the biologically active complex of sunflower oil, lard and butter under the influence of gamma rays: The points examined are the effect of small, medium and large doses (10 4 , 10 6 and 10 7 ) of gamma rays (Co 60 ) and the after-effect on the carotenes, tocopherols, sterols and linoleic acid in sunflower oil, lard and butter. Under these conditions, only the carotenes and tocopherols are subjected to changes to the point of destruction. What was found is a good correlative connection between the changes in the tocopherols and the degree of oxidation of the corresponding fats. (orig.) [de

  2. Stability Constants of Some Biologically Important Pyrazoles and Their Ni2+ Complexes in Different Dielectric Constant of Medium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. D. Deosarkar

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The proton-ligand stability constants of some biologically important new pyrazoles and formation constants of their complexes with Ni(II were determined at 0.1 mol dm-3 ionic strength and at 303.15 K in different dielectric constant of dioxane-water mixture by potentiometric method. The Calvin-Bjerrum's pH-titration technique as used by Irving and Rossotti was used for determination of stability constants. The results enabled to study the electrostatic forces of attraction between metal ion and ligand with changes in dielectric constant of the medium.

  3. A complex neutron activation method for the analysis of biological materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ordogh, M.

    1978-01-01

    The aim of the present work was to deal primarily with a few essential trace elements and to obtain reliable results of adequate accuracy and precision for the analysis of biological samples. A few other than trace elements were determined by the nondestructive technique as they can be well evaluated from the gamma-spectra. In the development of the method BOWEN's kale was chosen as model material. To confirm the reliability of the method two samples were analysed proposed by the IAEA in the frame of an international comparative analysis series. The comparative analysis shows the present method to be reliable, the precision and accuracy are good. (author)

  4. A complex method for the neutron activation analysis of biological materials

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ordogh, M.

    1978-05-01

    The destructive and nondestructive approach of neutron activation analysis used by the author is reviewed to determine some trace elements in biological materials: Ca, Cl, Co, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Rb, Sb, Sc, V and Zn. Bowen's kale was used to determine the accuracy and reliability. The parameters obtained were confirmed by participating in round robins organized by the IAEA: in which potato powder and animal bone have been analyzed for Zn, Co, Fe, Cr, Mn, Rb, Na, K and Cu. Tabulated results are given and compared with recommended values and literature data. Gamma spectra are shown. (T.G.)

  5. Complexities in understanding the role of compensation-related factors on recovery from whiplash-associated disorders: discussion paper 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Linda J; Connelly, Luke B; Spearing, Natalie M; Côté, Pierre; Buitenhuis, Jan; Kenardy, Justin

    2011-12-01

    Focused discussion. To present some of the complexities in conducting research on the role of compensation and compensation-related factors in recovery from whiplash-associated disorders (WAD) and to suggest directions for future research. There is divergence of opinion, primary research findings, and systematic reviews on the role of compensation and/or compensation-related factors in WAD recovery. The topic of research of compensation/compensation-related factors was discussed at an international summit meeting of 21 researchers from diverse fields of scientific enquiry. This article summarizes the main points raised in that discussion. Traffic injury compensation is a complex sociopolitical construct, which varies widely across jurisdictions. This leads to conceptual and methodological challenges in conducting and interpreting research in this area. It is important that researchers and their audiences be clear about what aspect of the compensation system is being addressed, what compensation-related variables are being studied, and what social/economic environment the compensation system exists in. In addition, summit participants also recommended that nontraditional, sophisticated study designs and analysis strategies be employed to clarify the complex causal pathways and mechanisms of effects. Care must be taken by both researchers and their audiences not to overgeneralize or confuse different aspects of WAD compensation. In considering the role of compensation/compensation-related factors on WAD and WAD recovery, it is important to retain a broad-based conceptualization of the range of biological, psychological, social, and economic factors that combine and interact to define and determine how people recover from WAD.

  6. New Insights Into the Mechanisms and Biological Roles of D-Amino Acids in Complex Eco-Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aliashkevich, Alena; Alvarez, Laura; Cava, Felipe

    2018-01-01

    In the environment bacteria share their habitat with a great diversity of organisms, from microbes to humans, animals and plants. In these complex communities, the production of extracellular effectors is a common strategy to control the biodiversity by interfering with the growth and/or viability of nearby microbes. One of such effectors relies on the production and release of extracellular D-amino acids which regulate diverse cellular processes such as cell wall biogenesis, biofilm integrity, and spore germination. Non-canonical D-amino acids are mainly produced by broad spectrum racemases (Bsr). Bsr’s promiscuity allows it to generate high concentrations of D-amino acids in environments with variable compositions of L-amino acids. However, it was not clear until recent whether these molecules exhibit divergent functions. Here we review the distinctive biological roles of D-amino acids, their mechanisms of action and their modulatory properties of the biodiversity of complex eco-systems. PMID:29681896

  7. A mathematical framework for agent based models of complex biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinkelmann, Franziska; Murrugarra, David; Jarrah, Abdul Salam; Laubenbacher, Reinhard

    2011-07-01

    Agent-based modeling and simulation is a useful method to study biological phenomena in a wide range of fields, from molecular biology to ecology. Since there is currently no agreed-upon standard way to specify such models, it is not always easy to use published models. Also, since model descriptions are not usually given in mathematical terms, it is difficult to bring mathematical analysis tools to bear, so that models are typically studied through simulation. In order to address this issue, Grimm et al. proposed a protocol for model specification, the so-called ODD protocol, which provides a standard way to describe models. This paper proposes an addition to the ODD protocol which allows the description of an agent-based model as a dynamical system, which provides access to computational and theoretical tools for its analysis. The mathematical framework is that of algebraic models, that is, time-discrete dynamical systems with algebraic structure. It is shown by way of several examples how this mathematical specification can help with model analysis. This mathematical framework can also accommodate other model types such as Boolean networks and the more general logical models, as well as Petri nets.

  8. On the holistic approach in cellular and cancer biology: nonlinearity, complexity, and quasi-determinism of the dynamic cellular network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waliszewski, P; Molski, M; Konarski, J

    1998-06-01

    A keystone of the molecular reductionist approach to cellular biology is a specific deductive strategy relating genotype to phenotype-two distinct categories. This relationship is based on the assumption that the intermediary cellular network of actively transcribed genes and their regulatory elements is deterministic (i.e., a link between expression of a gene and a phenotypic trait can always be identified, and evolution of the network in time is predetermined). However, experimental data suggest that the relationship between genotype and phenotype is nonbijective (i.e., a gene can contribute to the emergence of more than just one phenotypic trait or a phenotypic trait can be determined by expression of several genes). This implies nonlinearity (i.e., lack of the proportional relationship between input and the outcome), complexity (i.e. emergence of the hierarchical network of multiple cross-interacting elements that is sensitive to initial conditions, possesses multiple equilibria, organizes spontaneously into different morphological patterns, and is controlled in dispersed rather than centralized manner), and quasi-determinism (i.e., coexistence of deterministic and nondeterministic events) of the network. Nonlinearity within the space of the cellular molecular events underlies the existence of a fractal structure within a number of metabolic processes, and patterns of tissue growth, which is measured experimentally as a fractal dimension. Because of its complexity, the same phenotype can be associated with a number of alternative sequences of cellular events. Moreover, the primary cause initiating phenotypic evolution of cells such as malignant transformation can be favored probabilistically, but not identified unequivocally. Thermodynamic fluctuations of energy rather than gene mutations, the material traits of the fluctuations alter both the molecular and informational structure of the network. Then, the interplay between deterministic chaos, complexity, self

  9. Biological activity of Fe(III) aquo-complexes towards ferric chelate reductase (FCR).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escudero, Rosa; Gómez-Gallego, Mar; Romano, Santiago; Fernández, Israel; Gutiérrez-Alonso, Ángel; Sierra, Miguel A; López-Rayo, Sandra; Nadal, Paloma; Lucena, Juan J

    2012-03-21

    In this study we have obtained experimental evidence that confirms the high activity of aquo complexes III and IV towards the enzyme FCR, responsible for the reduction of Fe(III) to Fe(II) in the process of iron acquisition by plants. The in vivo FCR assays in roots of stressed cucumber plants have shown a higher efficiency of the family of complexes III and a striking structure-activity relationship with the nature of the substituent placed in a phenyl group far away from the metal center. The results obtained in this work demonstrate that all the aquo compounds tested interact efficiently with the enzyme FCR and hence constitute a new concept of iron chelates that could be of great use in agronomy.

  10. Tilts, dopants, vacancies and non-stoichiometry: Understanding and designing the properties of complex solid oxide perovskites from first principles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Joseph W.

    Perovskite oxides of formula ABO3 have a wide range of structural, electrical and mechanical properties, making them vital materials for many applications, such as catalysis, ultrasound machines and communication devices. Perovskite solid solutions with high piezoelectric response, such as ferroelectrics, are of particular interest as they can be employed as sensors in SONAR devices. Ferroelectric materials are unique in that their chemical and electrical properties can be non-invasively and reversibly changed, by switching the bulk polarization. This makes ferroelectrics useful for applications in non-volatile random access memory (NVRAM) devices. Perovskite solid solutions with a lower piezoelectric response than ferroelectrics are important for communication technology, as they function well as electroceramic capacitors. Also of interest is how these materials act as a component in a solid oxide fuel cell, as they can function as an efficient source of energy. Altering the chemical composition of these solid oxide materials offers an opportunity to change the desired properties of the final ceramic, adding a degree of flexibility that is advantageous for a variety of applications. These solid oxides are complex, sometimes disordered systems that are a challenge to study experimentally. However, as it is their complexity which produces favorable properties, highly accurate modeling which captures the essential features of the disordered structure is necessary to explain the behavior of current materials and predict favorable compositions for new materials. Methodological improvements and faster computer speeds have made first-principles and atomistic calculations a viable tool for understanding these complex systems. Offering a combination of accuracy and computational speed, the density functional theory (DFT) approach can reveal details about the microscopic structure and interactions of complex systems. Using DFT and a combination of principles from both

  11. Understanding Spatially Complex Segmental and Branch Anatomy Using 3D Printing: Liver, Lung, Prostate, Coronary Arteries, and Circle of Willis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Javan, Ramin; Herrin, Douglas; Tangestanipoor, Ardalan

    2016-09-01

    Three-dimensional (3D) manufacturing is shaping personalized medicine, in which radiologists can play a significant role, be it as consultants to surgeons for surgical planning or by creating powerful visual aids for communicating with patients, physicians, and trainees. This report illustrates the steps in development of custom 3D models that enhance the understanding of complex anatomy. We graphically designed 3D meshes or modified imported data from cross-sectional imaging to develop physical models targeted specifically for teaching complex segmental and branch anatomy. The 3D printing itself is easily accessible through online commercial services, and the models are made of polyamide or gypsum. Anatomic models of the liver, lungs, prostate, coronary arteries, and the Circle of Willis were created. These models have advantages that include customizable detail, relative low cost, full control of design focusing on subsegments, color-coding potential, and the utilization of cross-sectional imaging combined with graphic design. Radiologists have an opportunity to serve as leaders in medical education and clinical care with 3D printed models that provide beneficial interaction with patients, clinicians, and trainees across all specialties by proactively taking on the educator's role. Complex models can be developed to show normal anatomy or common pathology for medical educational purposes. There is a need for randomized trials, which radiologists can design, to demonstrate the utility and effectiveness of 3D printed models for teaching simple and complex anatomy, simulating interventions, measuring patient satisfaction, and improving clinical care. Copyright © 2016 The Association of University Radiologists. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Genetic networking of the Bemisia tabaci cryptic species complex reveals pattern of biological invasions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul De Barro

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A challenge within the context of cryptic species is the delimitation of individual species within the complex. Statistical parsimony network analytics offers the opportunity to explore limits in situations where there are insufficient species-specific morphological characters to separate taxa. The results also enable us to explore the spread in taxa that have invaded globally. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using a 657 bp portion of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase 1 from 352 unique haplotypes belonging to the Bemisia tabaci cryptic species complex, the analysis revealed 28 networks plus 7 unconnected individual haplotypes. Of the networks, 24 corresponded to the putative species identified using the rule set devised by Dinsdale et al. (2010. Only two species proposed in Dinsdale et al. (2010 departed substantially from the structure suggested by the analysis. The analysis of the two invasive members of the complex, Mediterranean (MED and Middle East - Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1, showed that in both cases only a small number of haplotypes represent the majority that have spread beyond the home range; one MEAM1 and three MED haplotypes account for >80% of the GenBank records. Israel is a possible source of the globally invasive MEAM1 whereas MED has two possible sources. The first is the eastern Mediterranean which has invaded only the USA, primarily Florida and to a lesser extent California. The second are western Mediterranean haplotypes that have spread to the USA, Asia and South America. The structure for MED supports two home range distributions, a Sub-Saharan range and a Mediterranean range. The MEAM1 network supports the Middle East - Asia Minor region. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The network analyses show a high level of congruence with the species identified in a previous phylogenetic analysis. The analysis of the two globally invasive members of the complex support the view that global invasion often involve very small portions of

  13. What it takes to understand and cure a living system: computational systems biology and a systems biology-driven pharmacokinetics-pharmacodynamics platform

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Swat, Maciej; Kiełbasa, Szymon M.; Polak, Sebastian; Olivier, Brett; Bruggeman, Frank J.; Tulloch, Mark Quinton; Snoep, Jacky L.; Verhoeven, Arthur J.; Westerhoff, Hans V.

    2011-01-01

    The utility of model repositories is discussed in the context of systems biology (SB). It is shown how such repositories, and in particular their live versions, can be used for computational SB: we calculate the robustness of the yeast glycolytic network with respect to perturbations of one of its

  14. Genistein in 1:1 Inclusion Complexes with Ramified Cyclodextrins: Theoretical, Physicochemical and Biological Evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corina Danciu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Genistein is one of the most studied phytocompound in the class of isoflavones, presenting a notable estrogenic activity and in vitro and/or in vivo benefits in different types of cancer such as those of the bladder, kidney, lung, pancreatic, skin and endometrial cancer. A big inconvenience for drug development is low water solubility, which can be solved by using hydrophilic cyclodextrins. The aim of this study is to theoretically analyze, based on the interaction energy, the possibility of a complex formation between genistein (Gen and three different ramified cyclodextrins (CD, using a 1:1 molar ratio Gen:CD. Theoretical data were correlated with a screening of both in vitro and in vivo activity. Proliferation of different human cancer cell lines, antimicrobial activity and angiogenesis behavior was analyzed in order to see if complexation has a beneficial effect for any of the above mentioned activities and if so, which of the three CDs is the most suitable for the incorporation of genistein, and which may lead to future improved pharmaceutical formulations. Results showed antiproliferative activity with different IC50 values for all tested cell lines, remarkable antimicrobial activity on Bacillus subtilis and antiangiogenic activity as revealed by CAM assay. Differences regarding the intensity of the activity for pure and the three Gen complexes were noticed as explained in the text. The data represent a proof that the three CDs can be used for furtherer research towards practical use in the pharmaceutical and medical field.

  15. Synthesis, Characterization, Luminescence and Biological Activity of Two Lanthanide Complexes Involving Mixed Ligands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ma, Deyun; Guo, Haifu; Qin, Liang [Zhaoqing Univ., Zhaoqing (China); Xu, Jun [Jinan Univ., Guangzhou (China)

    2013-09-15

    Two new isostructural dinuclear complexes, Ln{sub 2}(4-cpa){sub 6}(bpy){sub 2} (Ln = Eu (1); Tb (2), 4-cpa = 4-chlorophenyl-acetate, bpy = 2,2'-bipyridine), have been hydrothermally synthesized and characterized by IR spectroscopy, elemental analysis, thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), powder X-ray diffraction and single-crystal X-ray diffraction. The lanthanide ions are bridged by two bidentate and two terdentate carboxylate groups to give centrosymmetric dimers with Ln···Ln separations of 3.967(2) and 3.956(3) A, respectively. Each metal atom is nine-coordinate and exhibits a distorted tricapped trigonal prismatic geometry. Three-dimensional fluorescence spectra show that both 1 and 2 emit bright red and green luminescence at room temperature, with long lifetimes of up to 0.369 ms (at 614 nm) and 0.432 ms (at 543 nm), respectively. Moreover, poor luminescence efficiency has been noted for complex 2. The 4-Hcpa ligand and complexes 1-2 have been screened for their phytogrowth-inhibitory activities against Brassica napus L. and Echinochloa crusgalli L., and the results are compared with the activity of quizalofop-P-ethyl.

  16. Teaching Trajectories and Students' Understanding of Difficult Concepts in Biology in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area in Rivers State

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mumuni, Abosede Anthonia Olufemi; Dike, John Worlu; Uzoma-Nwogu, Azibaolanari

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of teaching trajectories on students' understanding of difficult concepts in Biology. Two research questions and two null hypotheses guided the study which was carried out in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State. Two public coeducational schools out of thirteen drawn through purposive sampling…

  17. STRUCTURE AND SOME BIOLOGICAL PROPERTIES OF Fe(III COMPLEXES WITH NITROGEN-CONTAINING LIGANDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ion Bulhac

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Four coordination compounds of iron(III with ligands based on hydrazine and sulfadiazine: FeCl3·digsemi·2H2O (I (digsemi-semicarbazide diacetic acid dihydrazide, [Fe(HLSO4] (II (НL - sulfadiazine, [Fe(H2L1(H2O2](NO33·5H2O (III (H2L1-2,6-diacetylpyridine bis(nicotinoylhydrazone and [Fe(H2L2(H2O2](NO33•1.5H2O (IV (H2L2 - 2,6-diacetylpyridine bis(isonicotinoylhydrazone were synthesized. The spectroscopic and structural characterisation as well as their biological, properties are presented.

  18. CoreFlow: A computational platform for integration, analysis and modeling of complex biological data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pasculescu, Adrian; Schoof, Erwin; Creixell, Pau

    2014-01-01

    between data generation, analysis and manuscript writing. CoreFlow is being released to the scientific community as an open-sourced software package complete with proteomics-specific examples, which include corrections for incomplete isotopic labeling of peptides (SILAC) or arginine-to-proline conversion......A major challenge in mass spectrometry and other large-scale applications is how to handle, integrate, and model the data that is produced. Given the speed at which technology advances and the need to keep pace with biological experiments, we designed a computational platform, CoreFlow, which...... provides programmers with a framework to manage data in real-time. It allows users to upload data into a relational database (MySQL), and to create custom scripts in high-level languages such as R, Python, or Perl for processing, correcting and modeling this data. CoreFlow organizes these scripts...

  19. A chemical-biological evaluation of rhodium(I) N-heterocyclic carbene complexes as prospective anticancer drugs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oehninger, Luciano; Küster, Laura Nadine; Schmidt, Claudia; Muñoz-Castro, Alvaro; Prokop, Aram; Ott, Ingo

    2013-12-23

    Rhodium(I) complexes bearing N-heterocyclic carbene (NHC) ligands have been widely used in catalytic chemistry, but there are very few reports of biological properties of these organometallics. A series of Rh(I)-NHC derivatives with 1,5-cyclooctadiene and CO as secondary ligands were synthesized, characterized, and biologically investigated as prospective antitumor drug candidates. Pronounced antiproliferative effects were noted for all complexes, along with moderate inhibitory activity of thioredoxin reductase (TrxR) and efficient binding to biomolecules (DNA, albumin). Biodistribution studies showed that the presence of albumin lowered the cellular uptake and confirmed the transport of rhodium into the nuclei. Changes in the mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) were observed as well as DNA fragmentation in wild-type and daunorubicin- or vincristine-resistant Nalm-6 leukemia cells. Overall, these studies indicated that Rh(I)-NHC fragments could be used as partial structures of new antitumor agents, in particular in those drugs designed to address resistant malignant tissues. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  20. Photoactive platinum(II) complexes of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug naproxen: Interaction with biological targets, antioxidant activity and cytotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srivastava, Payal; Singh, Khushbu; Verma, Madhu; Sivakumar, Sri; Patra, Ashis K

    2018-01-20

    The effect on the therapeutic efficacy of Pt(II) complexes on combining non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is an attractive strategy to circumvent chronic inflammation mediated by cancer and metastasis. Two square-planar platinum(II) complexes: [Pt(dach)(nap)Cl] (1) and [Pt(dach)(nap) 2 ] (2), where dach = (1R,2R)-dichloro(cyclohexane-1,2-diamine) and NSAID drug naproxen (nap), have been designed for studying their biological activity. The naproxen bound to the Pt(II) centre get released upon photoirradiation with low-power UV-A light as confirmed by the significant enhancement in emission intensities of the complexes. The compounds were evaluated for their photophysical properties, photostability, reactivity with 5'-guanosine monophophosphate (5'-GMP), interactions with CT-DNA and BSA, antioxidant activity and reactive oxygen species mediated photo-induced DNA damage properties. ESI-MS studies demonstrated the formation of bis-adduct with 5'-GMP and the formation of Pt II -DNA crosslinks by gel electrophoretic mobility shift assay and ITC studies. The interaction of the complexes 1 and 2 with the CT-DNA exhibits potential binding affinity (K b  ∼ 10 4  M -1 , K app ∼ 10 5  M -1 ), implying intercalation to CT-DNA through planar naphthyl ring of the complexes. Both the complexes also exhibit strong binding affinity towards BSA (K BSA ∼ 10 5  M -1 ). The complexes exhibit efficient DNA damage activity on irradiation at 365 nm via formation of singlet oxygen ( 1 O 2 ) and hydroxyl radical ( • OH) under physiological conditions. Both the complexes were cytotoxic in dark and exhibit significant enhancement of cytotoxicity upon photo-exposure against HeLa and HepG2 cancer cells giving IC 50 values ranging from 8 to 12 μM for 1 and 2. The cellular internalization data showed cytosolic and nuclear localization of the complexes in the HeLa cells. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.