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Sample records for understanding gun4 biological

  1. Porphyrin Binding to Gun4 Protein, Facilitated by a Flexible Loop, Controls Metabolite Flow through the Chlorophyll Biosynthetic Pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopečná, Jana; Cabeza de Vaca, Israel; Adams, Nathan B P; Davison, Paul A; Brindley, Amanda A; Hunter, C Neil; Guallar, Victor; Sobotka, Roman

    2015-11-20

    In oxygenic phototrophs, chlorophylls, hemes, and bilins are synthesized by a common branched pathway. Given the phototoxic nature of tetrapyrroles, this pathway must be tightly regulated, and an important regulatory role is attributed to magnesium chelatase enzyme at the branching between the heme and chlorophyll pathway. Gun4 is a porphyrin-binding protein known to stimulate in vitro the magnesium chelatase activity, but how the Gun4-porphyrin complex acts in the cell was unknown. To address this issue, we first performed simulations to determine the porphyrin-docking mechanism to the cyanobacterial Gun4 structure. After correcting crystallographic loop contacts, we determined the binding site for magnesium protoporphyrin IX. Molecular modeling revealed that the orientation of α6/α7 loop is critical for the binding, and the magnesium ion held within the porphyrin is coordinated by Asn-211 residue. We also identified the basis for stronger binding in the Gun4-1 variant and for weaker binding in the W192A mutant. The W192A-Gun4 was further characterized in magnesium chelatase assay showing that tight porphyrin binding in Gun4 facilitates its interaction with the magnesium chelatase ChlH subunit. Finally, we introduced the W192A mutation into cells and show that the Gun4-porphyrin complex is important for the accumulation of ChlH and for channeling metabolites into the chlorophyll biosynthetic pathway. © 2015 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  2. Understanding Biological Regulation Through Synthetic Biology.

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    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.

  3. Porphyrin Binding to Gun4 Protein, Facilitated by a Flexible Loop, Controls Metabolite Flow through the Chlorophyll Biosynthetic Pathway*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopečná, Jana; Cabeza de Vaca, Israel; Adams, Nathan B. P.; Davison, Paul A.; Brindley, Amanda A.; Hunter, C. Neil; Guallar, Victor; Sobotka, Roman

    2015-01-01

    In oxygenic phototrophs, chlorophylls, hemes, and bilins are synthesized by a common branched pathway. Given the phototoxic nature of tetrapyrroles, this pathway must be tightly regulated, and an important regulatory role is attributed to magnesium chelatase enzyme at the branching between the heme and chlorophyll pathway. Gun4 is a porphyrin-binding protein known to stimulate in vitro the magnesium chelatase activity, but how the Gun4-porphyrin complex acts in the cell was unknown. To address this issue, we first performed simulations to determine the porphyrin-docking mechanism to the cyanobacterial Gun4 structure. After correcting crystallographic loop contacts, we determined the binding site for magnesium protoporphyrin IX. Molecular modeling revealed that the orientation of α6/α7 loop is critical for the binding, and the magnesium ion held within the porphyrin is coordinated by Asn-211 residue. We also identified the basis for stronger binding in the Gun4-1 variant and for weaker binding in the W192A mutant. The W192A-Gun4 was further characterized in magnesium chelatase assay showing that tight porphyrin binding in Gun4 facilitates its interaction with the magnesium chelatase ChlH subunit. Finally, we introduced the W192A mutation into cells and show that the Gun4-porphyrin complex is important for the accumulation of ChlH and for channeling metabolites into the chlorophyll biosynthetic pathway. PMID:26446792

  4. Defining Kidney Biology to Understand Renal Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Melissa H.; Brown, Dennis; Humphreys, Benjamin D.; McMahon, Andrew P.; Miner, Jeffrey H.; Sands, Jeff M.; Weisz, Ora A.; Mullins, Chris

    2014-01-01

    The Kidney Research National Dialogue represents a novel effort by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases to solicit and prioritize research objectives from the renal research and clinical communities. The present commentary highlights selected scientific opportunities specific to the study of renal development, physiology, and cell biology. Describing such fundamental kidney biology serves as a necessary foundation for translational and clinical studies that will advance disease care and prevention. It is intended that these objectives foster and focus scientific efforts in these areas in the coming decade and beyond. PMID:24370769

  5. PREFACE: Scales of understanding in biological development Scales of understanding in biological development

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    Newman, Timothy

    2011-08-01

    The development of an adult organism from a fertilized egg remains one of the deep mysteries of biology. Great strides have been made in the past three decades, primarily through ever more sophisticated genetic analyses and the advent of live-cell imaging, yet the underlying principles governing development are elusive. Recently, a new generation of biological physicists has entered the field, attracted by the hallmarks of development— coordinated dynamics and pattern formation arising from cell-cell interactions—which reflect tantalizing analogs with many-body systems in condensed matter physics and related fields. There have been corresponding influxes of researchers from other quantitative disciplines. With new workers come new questions and foci at different scales in space, time and complexity. The reductionist philosophy of developmental genetics has become increasingly complemented by a search for effective mechanisms at higher scales, a strategy which has a proven track record of success in the study of complex systems in physics. Are there new and universal mechanisms of development, supra-genetic in nature, waiting to be discovered by focusing on higher scales, or is development fundamentally the intricately scripted unfolding of complex genetic instructions? In this special focus issue of Physical Biology, we present cutting-edge research into embryo development from a broad spectrum of groups representing cell and developmental biology, biological physics, bioengineering and biomathematics. We are provided with a sense of how this multidisciplinary community views the fundamental issue of scale in development and are given some excellent examples of how we can bridge these scales through interdisciplinary collaboration, in order to create new levels of understanding. We start with two reviews which will provide newcomers with a guide to some of the outstanding questions in the field. Winklbauer and Müller use the phenomenon of mesoderm spreading as

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

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    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…

  7. The role of genetics in students' understandings of biological evolution

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    Rowe, Mary Frances

    2001-10-01

    An important element of an education is an understanding of biology. Science education researchers have shown that both high school and college biology students finish their biology instruction with a poor understanding of evolution, an important unifying concept of the discipline. The goal of this study is to examine the role of genetics in students understanding of evolution. Eight introductory college biology students' understandings of evolutionary biology and their use of genetics concepts as they addressed problems in evolution were examined. Data collected included students' classwork and individual student interviews. Data analysis began with an examination of each students understanding of evolution concepts. The framework for this analysis was based on Mayr's (1982) description of Darwin's five theories: evolution as such, common descent, natural selection, gradualism, and multiplication of species. The descriptions of students' understandings of evolution are followed by an account of how students used genetics concepts to support their explanations of evolutionary processes. The data from this study illustrate how students used transmission genetics, molecular biology and population genetics to support their understandings of evolution. The students in this study constructed syntheses of genetics and evolution concepts that they employed to solve problems. These syntheses fell into three categories: productive, semi-productive and obstructive. Students who achieved a productive synthesis of genetics and evolution concepts also held appropriate understandings of common descent, natural selection, gradualism, and speciation. Students who constructed either a semi-productive or obstructive synthesis of genetics and evolution did not benefit in the same way. Productive synthesis students benefited from their syntheses of genetics and evolution concepts in three ways. They were able to construct complete problem solutions for evolutionary problems, to

  8. Understanding the Intersections between Metabolism and Cancer Biology.

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    Vander Heiden, Matthew G; DeBerardinis, Ralph J

    2017-02-09

    Transformed cells adapt metabolism to support tumor initiation and progression. Specific metabolic activities can participate directly in the process of transformation or support the biological processes that enable tumor growth. Exploiting cancer metabolism for clinical benefit requires defining the pathways that are limiting for cancer progression and understanding the context specificity of metabolic preferences and liabilities in malignant cells. Progress toward answering these questions is providing new insight into cancer biology and can guide the more effective targeting of metabolism to help patients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Understanding the intersections between metabolism and cancer biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heiden, Matthew G. Vander; DeBerardinis, Ralph J.

    2017-01-01

    Transformed cells adapt metabolism to support tumor initiation and progression. Specific metabolic activities can participate directly in the process of transformation or support the biological processes that enable tumor growth. Exploiting cancer metabolism for clinical benefit requires defining the pathways that are limiting for cancer progression and understanding the context specificity of metabolic preferences and liabilities in malignant cells. Progress towards answering these questions is providing new insight into cancer biology and can guide the more effective targeting of metabolism to help patients. PMID:28187287

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

  13. Systems biology approaches to understand natural products biosynthesis

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    Cuauhtemoc eLicona-Cassani

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Actinomycetes populate soils and aquatic sediments which impose biotic and abiotic challenges for their survival. As a result, actinomycetes metabolism and genomes have evolved to produce an overwhelming diversity of specialized molecules. Polyketides, non-ribosomal peptides, post-translationally modified peptides, lactams and terpenes are well known bioactive natural products with enormous industrial potential. Accessing such biological diversity has proven difficult due to the complex regulation of cellular metabolism in actinomycetes and to the sparse knowledge of their physiology. The past decade, however, has seen the development of omics technologies that have significantly contributed to our better understanding of their biology. Key observations have contributed towards a shift in the exploitation of actinomycetes biology, such as using their full genomic potential, activating entire pathways through key metabolic elicitors and pathway engineering to improve biosynthesis. Here, we review recent efforts devoted to achieving enhanced discovery, activation and manipulation of natural product biosynthetic pathways in model actinomycetes using genome-scale biological datasets.

  14. Systems biology for understanding and engineering of heterotrophic oleaginous microorganisms.

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    Park, Beom Gi; Kim, Minsuk; Kim, Joonwon; Yoo, Heewang; Kim, Byung-Gee

    2017-01-01

    Heterotrophic oleaginous microorganisms continue to draw interest as they can accumulate a large amount of lipids which is a promising feedstock for the production of biofuels and oleochemicals. Nutrient limitation, especially nitrogen limitation, is known to effectively trigger the lipid production in these microorganisms. For the aim of developing improved strains, the mechanisms behind the lipid production have been studied for a long time. Nowadays, system-level understanding of their metabolism and associated metabolic switches is attainable with modern systems biology tools. This work reviews the systems biology studies, based on (i) top-down, large-scale 'omics' tools, and (ii) bottom-up, mathematical modeling methods, on the heterotrophic oleaginous microorganisms with an emphasis on further application to metabolic engineering. Copyright © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  15. Using functional genetics to understand breast cancer biology.

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    Ashworth, Alan; Bernards, Rene

    2010-07-01

    Genetic screens were for long the prerogative of those that studied model organisms. The discovery in 2001 that gene silencing through RNA interference (RNAi) can also be brought about in mammalian cells paved the way for large scale loss-of-function genetic screens in higher organisms. In this article, we describe how functional genetic studies can help us understand the biology of breast cancer, how it can be used to identify novel targets for breast cancer therapy, and how it can help in the identification of those patients that are most likely to respond to a given therapy.

  16. Biomarkers in anal cancer: from biological understanding to stratified treatment.

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    Jones, Christopher M; Goh, Vicky; Sebag-Montefiore, David; Gilbert, Duncan C

    2017-01-17

    Squamous cell carcinomas of the anus and anal canal represent a model of a cancer and perhaps the first where level 1 evidence supported primary chemoradiotherapy (CRT) in treating locoregional disease with curative intent. The majority of tumours are associated with infection with oncogenic subtypes of human papilloma virus and this plays a significant role in their sensitivity to treatment. However, not all tumours are cured with CRT and there remain opportunities to improve outcomes in terms of oncological control and also reducing late toxicities. Understanding the biology of ASCC promises to allow a more personalised approach to treatment, with the development and validation of a range of biomarkers and associated techniques that are the focus of this review.

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

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    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.

  18. Understanding the biological responses of nanostructured metals and surfaces

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    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.

  19. Understanding the biological and environmental implications of nanomaterials

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    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

  20. Context Dependence of Students' Views about the Role of Equations in Understanding Biology

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    Watkins, Jessica; Elby, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    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…

  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. Cognition and Rhetoric: Biological Basis of Meaning and Understanding

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    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.

  3. Pathogen refuge: a key to understanding biological control.

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    Johnson, Kenneth B

    2010-01-01

    Pathogen refuge is the idea that some potentially infectious pathogen propagules are not susceptible to the influence of an antagonistic microbial agent. The existence of a refuge can be attributable to one or more factors, including temporal, spatial, structural, and probabilistic, or to the pathogen's evolved ability to acquire antagonist-free space prior to ingress into a plant host. Within a specific pathosystem, refuge size can be estimated in experiments by measuring the proportion of pathogen propagules that remain infective as a function of the amount of antagonist introduced to the system. Refuge size is influenced by qualities of specific antagonists and by environment but less so by the quantity of antagonist. Consequently, most efforts to improve and optimize biological control are in essence efforts to reduce refuge size. Antagonist mixtures, optimal timing of antagonist introductions, integrated biological and chemical control, environmental optimization, and the utilization of disarmed pathogens as antagonists are strategies with potential to minimize a pathogen refuge.

  4. The EvoDevoCI: A Concept Inventory for Gauging Students' Understanding of Evolutionary Developmental Biology

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    Perez, Kathryn E.; Hiatt, Anna; Davis, Gregory K.; Trujillo, Caleb; French, Donald P.; Terry, Mark; Price, Rebecca M.

    2013-01-01

    The American Association for the Advancement of Science 2011 report "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education" encourages the teaching of developmental biology as an important part of teaching evolution. Recently, however, we found that biology majors often lack the developmental knowledge needed to understand evolutionary…

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

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    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.

  6. Lipids in cell biology: how can we understand them better?

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    Muro, Eleonora; Atilla-Gokcumen, G. Ekin; Eggert, Ulrike S.

    2014-01-01

    Lipids are a major class of biological molecules and play many key roles in different processes. The diversity of lipids is on the same order of magnitude as that of proteins: cells express tens of thousands of different lipids and hundreds of proteins to regulate their metabolism and transport. Despite their clear importance and essential functions, lipids have not been as well studied as proteins. We discuss here some of the reasons why it has been challenging to study lipids and outline technological developments that are allowing us to begin lifting lipids out of their “Cinderella” status. We focus on recent advances in lipid identification, visualization, and investigation of their biophysics and perturbations and suggest that the field has sufficiently advanced to encourage broader investigation into these intriguing molecules. PMID:24925915

  7. Nasopharyngeal carcinoma: understanding its molecular biology at a fine scale.

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    Paul, Prosenjit; Deka, Himangshu; Malakar, Arup K; Halder, Binata; Chakraborty, Supriyo

    2018-01-01

    Among all cancers, the incidence of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is quite high in the endemic regions. NPC is a head and neck cancer with poor survival rate, and is rare throughout most of the world but common in certain geographic areas, like southern Asia and some regions of North East India (Nagaland, Manipur, and Mizoram). A clear understanding of its etiology is still lacking, but NPC is widely suspected to be the result of both genetic susceptibility and exposure to environmental factors or Epstein-Barr virus infection. Diagnosis in the early stages needs a high index of clinical acumen, and, although most cross-sectional imaging investigations show the tumor with precision, confirmation is dependent on histology. This article reviews all related research reports on NPC histopathological classifications worldwide that have been published within the past 20 years. Genome-wide association studies suggested that there might be common disease mechanisms between that disease and NPC. Personalized management rules, quality assessment of life in patients, and an understanding of the essential mechanisms of recurrence could be directed toward research into recurrent NPC. Hence, this literature would offer otolaryngologists a deeper insight into the etiological and management aspects of NPC.

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

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    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].

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Pathogenesis of biliary atresia: defining biology to understand clinical phenotypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asai, Akihiro; Miethke, Alexander; Bezerra, Jorge A.

    2016-01-01

    Biliary atresia is a severe cholangiopathy of early infancy that destroys extrahepatic bile ducts and disrupts bile flow. With a poorly defined disease pathogenesis, treatment consists of the surgical removal of duct remnants followed by hepatoportoenterostomy. Although this approach can improve the short-term outcome, the liver disease progresses to end-stage cirrhosis in most children. Further improvement in outcome will require a greater understanding of the mechanisms of biliary injury and fibrosis. Here, we review progress in the field, which has been fuelled by collaborative studies in larger patient cohorts and the development of cell culture and animal model systems to directly test hypotheses. Advances include the identification of phenotypic subgroups and stages of disease based on clinical, pathological and molecular features. Stronger evidence exists for viruses, toxins and gene sequence variations in the aetiology of biliary atresia, triggering a proinflammatory response that injures the duct epithelium and produces a rapidly progressive cholangiopathy. The immune response also activates the expression of type 2 cytokines that promote epithelial cell proliferation and extracellular matrix production by nonparenchymal cells. These advances provide insight into phenotype variability and might be relevant to the design of personalized trials to block progression of liver disease. PMID:26008129

  13. 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

    2015-02-01

    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 understanding was validated through an exploratory factor analysis of participants' responses. As for the questionnaire regarding the students' biology learning self-efficacy (BLSE), an exploratory factor analysis revealed a total of four factors including higher-order cognitive skills (BLSE-HC), everyday application (BLSE-EA), science communication (BLSE-SC), and practical works (BLSE-PW). The results of the cluster analysis according to the participants' conceptions of learning biology indicated that students in the two major clusters either viewed learning biology as understanding or possessed mixed-conceptions of memorizing and understanding. The students in the third cluster mainly focused on memorizing in their learning while the students in the fourth cluster showed less agreement with both conceptions of memorizing and understanding. This study further revealed that the conception of learning as understanding was positively associated with the BLSE of university students with biology-related majors. However, the conception of learning as memorizing may foster students' BLSE only when such a notion co-exists with the conception of learning with understanding.

  14. 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…

  15. Analyzing Students' Understanding of Models and Modeling Referring to the Disciplines Biology, Chemistry, and Physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krell, Moritz; Reinisch, Bianca; Krüger, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    In this study, secondary school students' (N?=?617; grades 7 to 10) understanding of models and modeling was assessed using tasks which explicitly refer to the scientific disciplines of biology, chemistry, and physics and, as a control, to no scientific discipline. The students' responses are interpreted as their biology-, chemistry-, and…

  16. "Evo in the News:" Understanding Evolution and Students' Attitudes toward the Relevance of Evolutionary Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Infanti, Lynn M.; Wiles, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    This investigation evaluated the effects of exposure to the "Evo in the News" section of the "Understanding Evolution" website on students' attitudes toward biological evolution in undergraduates in a mixed-majors introductory biology course at Syracuse University. Students' attitudes toward evolution and changes therein were…

  17. 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.

  18. 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 group may have scored higher on the posttest (M = 8.830 +/- .477 vs. M = 7.330 +/- .330; z =-1.729, p = .084) and the traditional group may have scored higher on the pretest than the posttest (M = 8.333 +/- .333 vs M = 7.333 +/- .333; z = -1.650 , p = .099). Two themes emerged after the interviews and instructor reflections: 1) After instruction students had a more extensive understanding of classification in three areas: vocabulary terms, physical characteristics, and types of evidence used to classify. Both groups extended their understanding, but only POGIL students could explain how molecular evidence is used in classification. 2) The challenges preventing students from understanding classification were: 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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".

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Understanding recognition and self-assembly in biology using the chemist's toolbox. Insight into medicinal chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quirolo, Z B; Benedini, L A; Sequeira, M A; Herrera, M G; Veuthey, T V; Dodero, V I

    2014-01-01

    Medicinal chemistry is intimately connected with basic science such as organic synthesis, chemical biology and biophysical chemistry among other disciplines. The reason of such connections is due to the power of organic synthesis to provide designed molecules; chemical biology to give tools to discover biological and/or pathological pathways and biophysical chemistry which provides the techniques to characterize and the theoretical background to understand molecular behaviour. The present review provides some selective examples of these research areas. Initially, template dsDNA organic synthesis and the spatio-temporal control of transcription are presenting following by the supramolecular entities used in drug delivery, such as liposomes and liquid crystal among others. Finally, peptides and protein self-assembly is connected with biomaterials and as an important event in the balance between health and disease. The final aim of the present review is to show the power of chemical tools not only for the synthesis of new molecules but also to improve our understanding of recognition and self-assembly in the biological context.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Understanding the sorption and biotransformation of organic micropollutants in innovative biological wastewater treatment technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarino, T; Suarez, S; Lema, J; Omil, F

    2018-02-15

    New technologies for wastewater treatment have been developed in the last years based on the combination of biological reactors operating under different redox conditions. Their efficiency in the removal of organic micropollutants (OMPs) has not been clearly assessed yet. This review paper is focussed on understanding the sorption and biotransformation of a selected group of 17 OMPs, including pharmaceuticals, hormones and personal care products, during biological wastewater treatment processes. Apart from considering the role of "classical" operational parameters, new factors such as biomass conformation and particle size, upward velocity applied or the addition of adsorbents have been considered. It has been found that the OMP removal by sorption not only depends on their physico-chemical characteristics and other parameters, such as the biomass conformation and particle size, or some operational conditions also relevant. Membrane biological reactors (MBR), have shown to enhance sorption and biotransformation of some OMPs. The same applies to technologies bases on direct addition of activated carbon in bioreactors. The OMP biotransformation degree and pathway is mainly driven by the redox potential and the primary substrate activity. The combination of different redox potentials in hybrid reactor systems can significantly enhance the overall OMP removal efficiency. Sorption and biotransformation can be synergistically promoted in biological reactors by the addition of activated carbon. The deeper knowledge of the main parameters influencing OMP removal provided by this review will allow optimizing the biological processes in the future. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Choroid plexus papillomas: advances in molecular biology and understanding of tumorigenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safaee, Michael; Oh, Michael C; Bloch, Orin; Sun, Matthew Z; Kaur, Gurvinder; Auguste, Kurtis I; Tihan, Tarik; Parsa, Andrew T

    2013-03-01

    Choroid plexus papillomas are rare, benign tumors originating from the choroid plexus. Although generally found within the ventricular system, they can arise ectopically in the brain parenchyma or disseminate throughout the neuraxis. We sought to review recent advances in our understanding of the molecular biology and oncogenic pathways associated with this disease. A comprehensive PubMed literature review was conducted to identify manuscripts discussing the clinical, molecular, and genetic features of choroid plexus papillomas. Articles concerning diagnosis, treatment, and long-term patient outcomes were also reviewed. The introduction of atypical choroid plexus papilloma as a distinct entity has increased the need for accurate histopathologic diagnosis. Advances in immunohistochemical staining have improved our ability to differentiate choroid plexus papillomas from other intracranial tumors or metastatic lesions using combinations of key markers and mitotic indices. Recent findings have implicated Notch3 signaling, the transcription factor TWIST1, platelet-derived growth factor receptor, and the tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand pathway in choroid plexus papilloma tumorigenesis. A combination of commonly occurring chromosomal duplications and deletions has also been identified. Surgical resection remains the standard of care, although chemotherapy and radiotherapy may be considered for recurrent or metastatic lesions. While generally considered benign, these tumors possess a complex biology that sheds insight into other choroid plexus tumors, particularly malignant choroid plexus carcinomas. Improving our understanding of the molecular biology, genetics, and oncogenic pathways associated with this tumor will allow for the development of targeted therapies and improved outcomes for patients with this disease.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  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. © 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).

  15. Teaching statistics in biology: using inquiry-based learning to strengthen understanding of statistical analysis in biology laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metz, Anneke M

    2008-01-01

    There is an increasing need for students in the biological sciences to build a strong foundation in quantitative approaches to data analyses. Although most science, engineering, and math field majors are required to take at least one statistics course, statistical analysis is poorly integrated into undergraduate biology course work, particularly at the lower-division level. Elements of statistics were incorporated into an introductory biology course, including a review of statistics concepts and opportunity for students to perform statistical analysis in a biological context. Learning gains were measured with an 11-item statistics learning survey instrument developed for the course. Students showed a statistically significant 25% (p biology. Students improved their scores on the survey after completing introductory biology, even if they had previously completed an introductory statistics course (9%, improvement p biology showed no loss of their statistics knowledge as measured by this instrument, suggesting that the use of statistics in biology course work may aid long-term retention of statistics knowledge. No statistically significant differences in learning were detected between male and female students in the study.

  16. "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…

  17. Proposition of diagnostic tool to provide indicatives about the understanding of biological knowledge and their interrelationships

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Maria de Andrade Caldeira

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the developing and validating steps of a Likert’s evaluative scale. The aim is to systematize the answers of Biological Sciences students about to: 1 Understanding or notunderstanding thescientific knowledge; and 2.If there is a relationship amongscientific concepts in order to contemplate a systemic thinking about natural phenomena. The described scale was validated by Cronbach's Alpha tests (α = 0.741, KMO (0.779 and Bartlett (0.000 and a Multivariate Analysis was fulfilled, typePrincipal Component Analysis (PCA. We understood that this kind of instrument allows a large amount of data to be collected and it groups can be compared efficiently, which justified the development of evaluative scale presented here.

  18. EGFR-Targeting as a Biological Therapy: Understanding Nimotuzumab's Clinical Effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perez, Rolando; Moreno, Ernesto; Garrido, Greta; Crombet, Tania

    2011-01-01

    Current clinical trials of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted therapies are mostly guided by a classical approach coming from the cytotoxic paradigm. The predominant view is that the efficacy of EGFR antagonists correlates with skin rash toxicity and induction of objective clinical response. Clinical benefit from EGFR-targeted therapies is well documented; however, chronic use in advanced cancer patients has been limited due to cumulative and chemotherapy-enhanced toxicity. Here we analyze different pieces of data from mechanistic and clinical studies with the anti-EGFR monoclonal antibody Nimotuzumab, which provides several clues to understand how this antibody may induce a biological control of tumor growth while keeping a low toxicity profile. Based on these results and the current state of the art on EGFR-targeted therapies, we discuss the need to evaluate new therapeutic approaches using anti-EGFR agents, which would have the potential of transforming advanced cancer into a long-term controlled chronic disease

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

    2017-12-27

    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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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 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. PMID:24833580

  3. 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.

  4. Achieving a Predictive Understanding of Antimicrobial Stress Physiology through Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Sean G; Turner, Randi L; Dwyer, Daniel J

    2018-04-01

    The dramatic spread and diversity of antibiotic-resistant pathogens has significantly reduced the efficacy of essentially all antibiotic classes, bringing us ever closer to a postantibiotic era. Exacerbating this issue, our understanding of the multiscale physiological impact of antimicrobial challenge on bacterial pathogens remains incomplete. Concerns over resistance and the need for new antibiotics have motivated the collection of omics measurements to provide systems-level insights into antimicrobial stress responses for nearly 20 years. Although technological advances have markedly improved the types and resolution of such measurements, continued development of mathematical frameworks aimed at providing a predictive understanding of complex antimicrobial-associated phenotypes is critical to maximize the utility of multiscale data. Here we highlight recent efforts utilizing systems biology to enhance our knowledge of antimicrobial stress physiology. We provide a brief historical perspective of antibiotic-focused omics measurements, highlight new measurement discoveries and trends, discuss examples and opportunities for integrating measurements with mathematical models, and describe future challenges for the field. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Understanding the Role of Biology in the Global Environment: NASA'S Mission to Planet Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Townsend, William F.

    1996-01-01

    NASA has long used the unique perspective of space as a means of expanding our understanding of how the Earth's environment functions. In particular, the linkages between land, air, water, and life-the elements of the Earth system-are a focus for NASA's Mission to Planet Earth. This approach, called Earth system science, blends together fields like meteorology, biology, oceanography, and atmospheric science. Mission to Planet Earth uses observations from satellites, aircraft, balloons, and ground researchers as the basis for analysis of the elements of the Earth system, the interactions between those elements, and possible changes over the coming years and decades. This information is helping scientists improve our understanding of how natural processes affect us and how we might be affecting them. Such studies will yield improved weather forecasts, tools for managing agriculture and forests, information for fishermen and local planners, and, eventually, an enhanced ability to predict how the climate will change in the future. NASA has designed Mission to Planet Earth to focus on five primary themes: Land Cover and Land Use Change; Seasonal to Interannual Climate Prediction; Natural Hazards; Long-Term Climate Variability; and Atmosphere Ozone.

  6. 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

  7. 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…

  8. The Effectiveness of an Online Curriculum on High School Students' Understanding of Biological Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsteller, Robert B.; Bodzin, Alec M.

    2015-01-01

    An online curriculum about biological evolution was designed to promote increased student content knowledge and evidentiary reasoning. A feasibility study was conducted with 77 rural high school biology students who learned with the online biological evolution unit. Data sources included the Biological Evolution Assessment Measure (BEAM), an…

  9. 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…

  10. Putting the Mind in the Brain: Promoting an Appreciation of the Biological Basis to Understanding Human Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, David L.

    2010-01-01

    A surprising number of students in psychology, behavioral science, and related social science classes fail to appreciate the importance of biological mechanisms to understanding behavior. To help teachers promote this understanding, this paper outlines six sources of evidence. These are (a) phylogenetic, (b) genetic/developmental, (c) clinical,…

  11. 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.

  12. Understanding human thiol dioxygenase enzymes: structure to function, and biology to pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Bibekananda; Kulharia, Mahesh; Mantha, Anil K

    2017-04-01

    Amino acid metabolism is a significant metabolic activity in humans, especially of sulphur-containing amino acids, methionine and cysteine (Cys). Cys is cytotoxic and neurotoxic in nature; hence, mammalian cells maintain a constant intracellular level of Cys. Metabolism of Cys is mainly regulated by two thiol dioxygenases: cysteine dioxygenase (CDO) and 2-aminoethanethiol dioxygenase (ADO). CDO and ADO are the only human thiol dioxygenases reported with a role in Cys metabolism and localized to mitochondria. This metabolic pathway is important in various human disorders, as it is responsible for the synthesis of antioxidant glutathione and is also for the synthesis of hypotaurine and taurine. CDO is the most extensively studied protein, whose high-resolution crystallographic structures have been solved. As compared to CDO, ADO is less studied, even though it has a key role in cysteamine metabolism. To further understand ADO's structure and function, the three-dimensional structures have been predicted from I-TASSER and SWISS-MODEL servers and validated with PROCHECK software. Structural superimposition approach using iPBA web server further confirmed near-identical structures (including active sites) for the predicted protein models of ADO as compared to CDO. In addition, protein-protein interaction and their association in patho-physiology are crucial in understanding protein functions. Both ADO and CDO interacting partner profiles have been presented using STRING database. In this study, we have predicted a 3D model structure for ADO and summarized the biological roles and the pathological consequences which are associated with the altered expression and functioning of ADO and CDO in case of cancer, neurodegenerative disorders and other human diseases. © 2017 The Authors. International Journal of Experimental Pathology © 2017 International Journal of Experimental Pathology.

  13. Why are well-educated Muscovites more likely to survive? Understanding the biological pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Megan A.; Shkolnikov, Vladimir M.; Goldman, Noreen

    2016-01-01

    There are large socioeconomic disparities in adult mortality in Russia, although the biological mechanisms are not well understood. With data from the study of Stress, Aging, and Health in Russia (SAHR), we use Gompertz hazard models to assess the relationship between educational attainment and mortality among older adults in Moscow and to evaluate biomarkers associated with inflammation, neuroendocrine function, heart rate variability, and clinical cardiovascular and metabolic risk as potential mediators of that relationship. We do this by assessing the extent to which the addition of biomarker variables into hazard models of mortality attenuates the association between educational attainment and mortality. We find that an additional year of education is associated with about 5% lower risk of age-specific all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. Inflammation biomarkers are best able to account for this relationship, explaining 25% of the education-all-cause mortality association, and 35% of the education-cardiovascular mortality association. Clinical markers perform next best, accounting for 13% and 23% of the relationship between education and all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, respectively. Although heart rate biomarkers are strongly associated with subsequent mortality, they explain very little of the education-mortality link. Neuroendocrine biomarkers fail to account for any portion of the link. These findings suggest that inflammation may be important for understanding mortality disparities by socioeconomic status. PMID:27085072

  14. 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.

  15. Understanding XPO1 target networks using systems biology and mathematical modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muqbil, Irfana; Kauffman, Michael; Shacham, Sharon; Mohammad, Ramzi M; Azmi, Asfar S

    2014-01-01

    The nuclear transport protein Exportin 1 (XPO1), also called chromosome region maintenance 1 (CRM1), is over-expressed 2- 4 fold in cancer. XPO1 is one of seven nuclear exporter proteins, and is solely responsible for the transport of the major tumor suppressor proteins (TSPs) from the nucleus to the cytoplasm. XPO1 exports any protein that carries a leucine-rich, hydrophobic nuclear export sequence (NES). A number of inhibitors have been discovered that block XPO1 function and thereby restore TSPs to the nucleus of both malignant and normal cells. However, natural product, irreversible XPO1 antagonists such as leptomycin B (LMB) have proven toxic in both preclinical models and in the clinic. Recently, orally bioavailable, drug-like small molecule, potent and selective inhibitors of XPO1 mediated nuclear export ("SINE") have been designed and are undergoing clinical evaluations in both humans and canines with cancer. The breadth of clinical applicability and long-term viability of an XPO1 inhibition strategy requires a deeper evaluation of the consequence of global re-organization of proteins in cancer and normal cells. Unfortunately, most of the studies on XPO1 inhibitors have focused on evaluating a limited number of TSPs or other proteins. Because XPO1 carries ~220 mammalian proteins out of the nucleus, such reductionism has not permitted a global understanding of cellular behavior upon drug-induced disruption of XPO1 function. The consequence of XPO1 inhibition requires holistic investigations that consider the entire set of XPO1 targets and their respective pathways modulated without losing key details. Systems biology is one such holistic approach that can be applied to understand XPO1 regulated proteins along with the downstream players involved. This review provides comprehensive evaluations of the different computational tools that can be utilized in the better understanding of XPO1 and its target. We anticipate that such holistic approaches can allow for

  16. 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

  17. 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…

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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,…

  2. Inherit the policy: A sociocultural approach to understanding evolutionary biology policy in South Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Gregory D.

    South Carolina biology Indicator 5.6 calls for students to "Summarize ways that scientists use data from a variety of sources to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory" (South Carolina Department of Education, 2006). Levinson and Sutton (2001) offered a sociocultural approach to policy that considers cultural and historical influences at all levels of the policy process. Lipsky (1980/2010) and others have identified teachers as de facto policy makers, exercising broad discretion in the execution of their work. This study looks to Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behavior as an initial framework to inform how evolutionary biology policy in South Carolina is conceptualized and understood at different levels of the policy process. The results of this study indicate that actors in the state's evolutionary biology policy process draw upon a myriad of Discourses (Gee, 1999/2005). These Discourses shape cultural dynamics and the agency of the policy actors as they navigate conflicting messages between testing mandates and evolutionary biology policy. There indeed exist gaps between how evolutionary biology policy in South Carolina is conceptualized and understood at the different levels of the policy process. Evidence from this study suggests that appropriation-level policy actors must be brought into the Discourse related to the critical analysis of evolutionary biology and academic freedom legislation must be enacted if South Carolina biology Indicator 5.6 is to realize practical significance in educational policy.

  3. 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.

  4. Biological effect of radiation. Basis for understanding the risk of Fukushima nuclear accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Imaoka, Tatsuhiko

    2011-01-01

    The radionuclide release in the Fukushima Nuclear Accident has induced a tremendous anxiety on possible health effects of low dose radiation. When radiation hits a cell in an organism, it may induce DNA damages which, if not repaired properly, lead to either cell death or genetic mutation. If function of the tissue is lost as a result of cell death, various tissue responses including dysfunction of hematopoietic tissues, sterility and skin responses may occur; these responses are not manifested if the radiation dose is low enough. Genetic mutation is considered to occur, albeit at a low frequency, even if the radiation dose is very small. Cancer is a result of genetic mutation and its probability is considered to rise, albeit slightly, if radiation induces a small amount of additional mutations. These assumptions lead to a notion that there is no 'safety dose' below which radiation does not cause any cancer. On the other hand, the study of atomic bomb survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki provides the most reliable quantitative information on the relationship between radiation dose and accompanying increase in cancer risk. The analysis so far indicates that cancer risk increases by 0.5-fold, compared to a background level, if a human body is exposed to 1 sievert of radiation; at lower doses, the risk is proportional to the dose, but it is impossible to detect cancer risk associated with 100 milli sievert of exposure because of statistical limitations. Although exposure to atomic bomb radiation occurred in a very little instance, the current situation poses a prolonged (i.e., low dose rate) exposure, probably resulting in still lower cancer risk. Still, since current radiation exposure has no benefit, unlike that in medical situations, it is important to reduce it to a level as low as reasonably achievable. I will explain the biological effect of radiation, including its mechanistic basis and effects on the human body, and wish to help the audience to

  5. 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).…

  6. The Effectiveness of an Online Curriculum on High School Students' Understanding of Biological Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsteller, Robert B.; Bodzin, Alec M.

    2015-12-01

    An online curriculum about biological evolution was designed to promote increased student content knowledge and evidentiary reasoning. A feasibility study was conducted with 77 rural high school biology students who learned with the online biological evolution unit. Data sources included the Biological Evolution Assessment Measure (BEAM), an analysis of discussion forum posts, and a post-implementation perceptions and attitudes questionnaire. BEAM posttest scores were significantly higher than the pretest scores. However, the findings revealed that the students required additional support to develop evidentiary reasoning. Many students perceived that the Web-based curriculum would have been enhanced by increased immediate interaction and feedback. Students required greater scaffolding to support complex, process-oriented tasks. Implications for designing Web-based science instruction with curriculum materials to support students' acquisition of content knowledge and science process skills in a Web-based setting are discussed.

  7. Systems-synthetic biology in understanding the complexities and simple devices in immunology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soni, Bhavnita; Nimsarkar, Prajakta; Mol, Milsee; Saha, Bhaskar; Singh, Shailza

    2018-03-23

    Systems and synthetic biology in the coming era has the ability to manipulate, stimulate and engineer cells to counteract the pathogenic immune response. The inherent biological complexities associated with the creation of a device allow capitalizing the biotechnological resources either by simply administering a recombinant cytokine or just reprogramming the immune cells. The strategy outlined, adopted and discussed may mark the beginning with promising therapeutics based on the principles of synthetic immunology. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Complex Systems Biology Approach To Understanding Coordination of JAK-STAT Signaling

    OpenAIRE

    Soebiyanto, Radina P.; Sreenath, Sree N.; Qu, Cheng-Kui; Loparo, Kenneth A.; Bunting, Kevin D.

    2007-01-01

    In this work, we search for coordination as an organizing principle in a complex signaling system using a multilevel hierarchical paradigm. The objective is to explain the underlying mechanism of Interferon (IFNγ) induced JAK-STAT (specifically JAK1/JAK2-STAT1) pathway behavior. Starting with a mathematical model of the pathway from the literature, we modularize the system using biological knowledge via principles of biochemical cohesion, biological significance, and functionality. The modula...

  9. Understanding channel tropism in traditional Chinese medicine in the context of systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ping; Liu, Songlin; Chen, Gang; Wang, Ping

    2013-09-01

    Channel tropism is investigated and developed through long-term clinical practice. In recent years, the development of channel tropism theory has attracted increasing attention. This study analyzed channel tropism theory and the problems associated with it. Results showed that this theory and systems biology have a similar holistic viewpoint. Systems biology could provide novel insights and platform in the study of channel tropism. Some problems in channel tropism theory, including pharmacology and action mechanism, were investigated.

  10. 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.

  11. Understanding Bateson and Maturana: Toward a Biological Foundation for the Social Sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell, Paul F.

    1985-01-01

    Offers a study guide for translating the work of Gregory Bateson and Humberto R. Maturana. Demonstrates that their work is highly compatible. Highlights their essential message: social systems and all human endeavor must be understood in light of our existence as biological entities. (BH)

  12. 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…

  13. 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…

  14. Inherit the Policy: A Sociocultural Approach to Understanding Evolutionary Biology Policy in South Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Gregory D.

    2012-01-01

    South Carolina biology Indicator 5.6 calls for students to "Summarize ways that scientists use data from a variety of sources to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory" (South Carolina Department of Education, 2006). Levinson and Sutton (2001) offered a sociocultural approach to policy that considers cultural…

  15. 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…

  16. 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...

  17. Understanding the Information Needs of Academic Scholars in Agricultural and Biological Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuruppu, Pali U.; Gruber, Anne Marie

    2006-01-01

    This study investigates the information needs of faculty and graduate students in agricultural and biological sciences. Qualitative research methods, interviews and focus groups, were used to examine what types of information these scholars need for their research, teaching and learning, how they seek that information, and perceptions. The…

  18. 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.

  19. Developing teachers' understanding of molecular biology: Building a foundation for students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boulay, Rachel; Parisky, Alex; Campbell, Chris

    2010-01-01

    Molecular biology often uses participation in active research laboratories as a form of educational training. However, this approach to learning severely restricts access. As a way of addressing this need, the University of Hawaii launched a project to expand this model to include newly developed online training materials in addition to a hands-on laboratory experience. This paper further explores the process of material development and assessment plans. A pilot case study of a group of advanced biology teachers who embark on learning molecular biology over a four-month period through online training materials and working side-by-side with medical researchers in a laboratory is described. Teachers were positive in reporting about the many areas they gained instruction in although some feedback suggested that the initial online materials over-emphasised abstract concepts and laboratory techniques and did not adequately connect to the active research problems or local context of most interest to teachers and students. The experiences of the teachers are shared in an effort to gain insight on how teachers perceive their participation in the study.

  20. 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.

  1. Sign language: its history and contribution to the understanding of the biological nature of language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruben, Robert J

    2005-05-01

    The development of conceptualization of a biological basis of language during the 20th century has come about, in part, through the appreciation of the central nervous system's ability to utilize varied sensory inputs, and particularly vision, to develop language. Sign language has been a part of the linguistic experience from prehistory to the present day. Data suggest that human language may have originated as a visual language and became primarily auditory with the later development of our voice/speech tract. Sign language may be categorized into two types. The first is used by individuals who have auditory/oral language and the signs are used for special situations, such as communication in a monastery in which there is a vow of silence. The second is used by those who do not have access to auditory/oral language, namely the deaf. The history of the two forms of sign language and the development of the concept of the biological basis of language are reviewed from the fourth century BC to the present day. Sign languages of the deaf have been recognized since at least the fourth century BC. The codification of a monastic sign language occurred in the seventh to eighth centuries AD. Probable synergy between the two forms of sign language occurred in the 16th century. Among other developments, the Abbey de L'Epée introduced, in the 18th century, an oral syntax, French, into a sign language based upon indigenous signs of the deaf and newly created signs. During the 19th century, the concept of a "critical" period for the acquisition of language developed; this was an important stimulus for the exploration of the biological basis of language. The introduction of techniques, e.g. evoked potentials and functional MRI, during the 20th century allowed study of the brain functions associated with language.

  2. 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

  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. The Development of Understanding of Evidence in Pre-University Biology Education in the Netherlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Schalk, H; van der Schee, J.A.; Boersma, Th.

    2013-01-01

    Ensuring the quality of investigations requires the understanding of procedures by which empirical evidence is obtained. This can be interpreted as becoming aware of and using criteria for evidence in one's mental structure. The question is whether this process can be observed in practice. In two

  5. 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…

  6. 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

  7. Nuclear, biological, and chemical terrorism: understanding the threat and designing responses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, J D

    1999-01-01

    Today nuclear, biological, and chemical (NBC) terrorism is a serious issue. The threat of terrorist or rogue states acquiring and using NBC weapons has ushered in a new age of terrorism; an age that is far more dangerous than any previous period. It is an age of terrorism with which no one yet knows how to deal. This article reviews recent trends in terrorism, and identifies groups that have both the potential and the motive to use weapons of mass destruction. In addition, it discusses the design and implemention of effective measures to meet this threat, as well as the role of CISM teams in preparation for, and in the aftermath of, an incident involving NBC weapons.

  8. Contributions of an animal scientist to understanding the biology of the uterus and pregnancy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazer, Fuller W

    2012-01-01

    I developed a passion for reproductive biology when taking a course in Physiology of Reproduction at Louisiana State University while preparing to apply for Veterinary School at Texas A&M University. My career path changed. I entered graduate school, obtained a Ph.D. and have enjoyed an academic career conducting research in uterine biology and pregnancy in animal science departments at the University of Florida and at Texas A&M University. My contributions to science include: (1) identification of molecules secreted by or transported by uterine epithelia into the uterine lumen that are critical to successful establishment and maintenance of pregnancy, (2) discovery of steroids and proteins required for pregnancy-recognition signalling and their mechanisms of action in pigs and ruminants, (3) patterns of fetal-placental development and placental transport of nutrients, (4) identification of links between nutrients and components of histotroph that affect fetal-placental development, (5) characterising aspects of the endocrinology of pregnancy and (6) contributing to efforts to exploit the therapeutic value of interferon tau, particularly for treatment of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. Current research focuses on select nutrients in the uterine lumen, specifically amino acids, glucose and fructose, that affect conceptus development, the therapeutic potential for interferon tau, stromal-epithelial cell signalling whereby progesterone and oestrogen act via steroid receptors in uterine stromal cells to stimulate secretion of growth factors (e.g. fibroblast growth factors and hepatocyte growth factor) that regulate uterine epithelial cells and conceptus trophectoderm, and roles of toll-like receptors expressed by uterine epithelia and conceptus trophectoderm in pregnancy.

  9. 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).

  10. [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.

  11. 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.

  12. Understanding specificity in metabolic pathways--structural biology of human nucleotide metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welin, Martin; Nordlund, Pär

    2010-05-21

    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. 2010. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Biological Niches within Human Calcified Aortic Valves: Towards Understanding of the Pathological Biomineralization Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Cottignoli

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite recent advances, mineralization site, its microarchitecture, and composition in calcific heart valve remain poorly understood. A multiscale investigation, using scanning electron microscopy (SEM, transmission electron microscopy (TEM, and energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (EDS, from micrometre up to nanometre, was conducted on human severely calcified aortic and mitral valves, to provide new insights into calcification process. Our aim was to evaluate the spatial relationship existing between bioapatite crystals, their local growing microenvironment, and the presence of a hierarchical architecture. Here we detected the presence of bioapatite crystals in two different mineralization sites that suggest the action of two different growth processes: a pathological crystallization process that occurs in biological niches and is ascribed to a purely physicochemical process and a matrix-mediated mineralized process in which the extracellular matrix acts as the template for a site-directed nanocrystals nucleation. Different shapes of bioapatite crystallization were observed at micrometer scale in each microenvironment but at the nanoscale level crystals appear to be made up by the same subunits.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Proteomic profiling: a novel approach to understanding the biological causes of soil water repellency

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Keulen, Geertje; Doerr, Stefan H.; Urbanek, Emilia; Jones, Alun; Dudley, Ed

    2010-05-01

    Soil water repellency is a common phenomenon affecting a wide range of soil and land use types in different climates and is considered "the norm rather than the exception with its degree being variable". In all but the most severe cases, soil water repellency is transient with soils wetting eventually after prolonged wet weather and returning, when soil moisture content falls below the critical value. Despite the far-reaching environmental and (agro-)economic consequences, the fundamental biological causes of soil water repellency and its transient behaviour remain poorly understood. It is widely accepted that soil water repellency is caused by organic compounds coating soil particle surfaces. This reduces the particle's surface tension to values lower than that of water, which, as a net effect, inhibits the intrusion of liquid water into the soil pore space. Microbial as well as plant-derived substances have been implicated as sources of these organic materials, while some microbes have also been identified as degraders and/or emulsifiers of hydrophobic compounds. Common hydrophobic compounds and metabolites (e.g. alkanes and fatty acids) have been isolated from both wettable and water repellent soils in similar amounts indicating that their relevance is ambiguous. Even greater uncertainty exists about the role of soil micro-organisms in the development, reduction and temporal variability of soil water repellency. Importantly, certain filamentous fungi and actinomycete bacteria are able to render their hydrophilic cell surface hydrophobic, for example, during spore formation and hyphal foraging through air-containing pores in soil, by producing extracellular hydrophobic proteins. Beyond their own cell surface, the extracellular proteins can form highly recalcitrant hydrophobic surfaces on the hydrophilic side of amphiphilic, i.e. air-water or soil particle, interfaces. Remarkably, the proteins from fungi can also adhere to hydrophobic surfaces under drying

  20. 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.

  1. Resonant Mie scattering in infrared spectroscopy of biological materials--understanding the 'dispersion artefact'.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassan, Paul; Byrne, Hugh J; Bonnier, Franck; Lee, Joe; Dumas, Paul; Gardner, Peter

    2009-08-01

    Infrared spectroscopic cytology is potentially a powerful clinical tool. However, in order for it to be successful, practitioners must be able to extract reliably a pure absorption spectrum from a measured spectrum that often contains many confounding factors. The most intractable problem to date is the, so called, dispersion artefact which most prominently manifests itself as a sharp decrease in absorbance on the high wavenumber side of the amide I band in the measured spectrum, exhibiting a derivative-like line shape. In this paper we use synchrotron radiation FTIR micro-spectroscopy to record spectra of mono-dispersed poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) spheres of systematically varying size and demonstrate that the spectral distortions in the data can be understood in terms of resonant Mie scattering. A full understanding of this effect will enable us to develop strategies for deconvolving the scattering contribution and recovering the pure absorption spectrum, thus removing one of the last technological barriers to the development of clinical spectroscopic cytology.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    I am particularly happy that the Academy is bringing out this document by Professor M S. Valiathan on Ayurvedic Biology. It is an effort to place before the scientific community, especially that of India, the unique scientific opportunities that arise out of viewing Ayurveda from the perspective of contemporary science, its tools ...

  7. 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

  8. Understanding the molecular biology of intervertebral disc degeneration and potential gene therapy strategies for regeneration: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sampara, Prasanthi; Banala, Rajkiran Reddy; Vemuri, Satish Kumar; Av, Gurava Reddy; Gpv, Subbaiah

    2018-03-22

    Intervertebral disc degeneration (IVDD) is a multi-factorial process characterized by phenotypic and genotypic changes, which leads to low back pain and disability. Prolonged imbalance between anabolism and catabolism in discs alters their composition resulting in progressive loss of proteoglycans and hydration leading to IVDD. The current managements for IVDD are only able to relieve the symptoms but do not address the underlying pathology of degeneration. Researchers have tried to find out differences between the aging and degeneration of the disc. Intense attempts are in progress for identifying the various factors responsible for disc degeneration, as well as strategies for regeneration. Recently biological approaches have gained thrust in the field of IVDD. The present review illustrates the current understanding of intervertebral disc degeneration and aims to put forth recent advancements in regeneration strategies involving different biological therapies such as growth factor, cell, and gene therapy. The potentials and consequences of these therapies are also extensively discussed along with citing the most suitable method, that is, the gene therapy in detail. Initially, gene therapy was mediated by viral vectors but recent progress has enabled researchers to opt for non-virus-mediated gene therapy methods, which ensure that there are no risks of mutagenicity and infection in target cells. With constant efforts, non-virus-mediated gene therapy may prove to be an extremely powerful tool in treatment of IVDD in future.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Understanding biological control of greenhouse whitefly with the parasitoid Encarsia formosa : from individual behaviour to population dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roermund, van H.J.W.

    1995-01-01

    The greenhouse whitefly, Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Westwood) (Homoptera, Aleyrodidae), is a very common, highly polyphagous pest insect all over the world. Biological control of whiteflies with the parasitoid Encarsia formosa Gahan (Hymenoptera, Aphelinidae) was already applied in the 1920s in

  2. Taming a wild beast: Developing molecular tools and new methods to understand the biology of Zymoseptoria tritici.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talbot, Nicholas J

    2015-06-01

    Septoria blotch of wheat is one of the world's most serious plant diseases, which is difficult to control due to the absence of durable host resistance and the increasing frequency of fungicide-resistance. The ascomycete fungus that causes the disease, Zymoseptoria tritici, has been very challenging to study. This special issue of Fungal Genetics and Biology showcases an integrated approach to method development and the innovation of new molecular tools to study the biology of Z. tritici. When considered together, these new methods will have a rapid and dramatic effect on our ability to combat this significant disease. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. 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

    2017-01-01

    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…

  4. Understanding why we age and how: Evolutionary biology meets different model organisms and multi-level omics: Meeting report on "Comparative Biology of Aging," Roscoff, October 12-16, 2015.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilson, Eric; Bosch, Thomas C G

    2016-06-01

    The conference explored an extraordinary diversity of aging strategies in organisms ranging from short-lived species to "immortal" animals and plants. Research on the biological processes of aging is at the brink of a revolution with respect to our understanding of its underlying mechanisms as well as our ability to prevent and cure a wide variety of age-related pathologies. © 2016 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  5. 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.

  6. Current perspectives and challenges in understanding the role of nitrite as an integral player in nitric oxide biology and therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitturi, Dario A; Patel, Rakesh P

    2011-08-15

    Beyond an inert oxidation product of nitric oxide (NO) metabolism, current thinking posits a key role for nitrite as a mediator of NO signaling, especially during hypoxia. This concept has been discussed in the context of nitrite serving a role as an endogenous modulator of NO homeostasis, but also from a novel clinical perspective whereby nitrite therapy may replenish NO signaling and prevent ischemic tissue injury. Indeed, the relatively rapid translation of studies delineating mechanisms of action to ongoing and planned clinical trials has been critical in fuelling interest in nitrite biology, and several excellent reviews have been written on this topic. In this article we limit our discussions to current concepts and what we feel are questions that remain unanswered within the paradigm of nitrite being a mediator of NO biology. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Understanding the Biological Roles of Pectins in Plants through Physiological and Functional Characterizations of Plant and Fungal Mutants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stranne, Maria

    polysaccharides and consist of backbones rich in galacturonic acids, which are decorated with a range of functional groups including acetyl esters and arabinan sidechains. Although much effort has been made to uncover biological functions of pectins in plants and remarkable progresses have taken place, many...... aspects remain elusive. Studies described in this thesis aimed at gaining new insights into the biological roles of pectin acetylation and arabinosylation in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. The thesis consists of four chapters: physiological characterization of cell wall mutants affected in cell......-degrading enzyme secreted by B. cinerea during infection of plants (Chapter 5). The results described resulted in valuable new knowledge regarding the role of pectin acetylation and arabinosylation in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana documented in three published research papers, one manuscript and one...

  8. Biological removal of iron and manganese in rapid sand filters - Process understanding of iron and manganese removal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lin, Katie

    -filter, where iron is removed. Step 2: Filtration in an after-filter where e.g. ammonium and manganese is removed. The treatment relies on microbial processes and may present an alternative, greener and more sustainable approach for drinking water production spending less chemicals and energy than chemical (e...... of manganese by simple aeration and precipitation under normal drinking water treatment conditions insignificant. Manganese may also be oxidized autocatalytically. Iron is usually easier to remove. First, iron is rapidly chemically oxidized by oxygen at neutral pH followed by precipitation and filtration...... manganese removal. Iron had a negative effect on manganese removal and even caused an increase in manganese concentration (release). Experiments with filter material from another water works, Astrup, specially designed to remove iron biologically, showed that the biological iron removal increased...

  9. 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

    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 ...... strategies that seek to modulate body mobilisation and the endocrine environment by use of glucogenic and lipogenic diets, and the use of in-line progesterone profiles to monitor reproductive status are then discussed in this biological context...

  10. Recent progress on our understanding of the biological effects of mercury in fish and wildlife in the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheuhammer, Anton; Braune, Birgit; Chan, Hing Man; Frouin, Héloïse; Krey, Anke; Letcher, Robert; Loseto, Lisa; Noël, Marie; Ostertag, Sonja; Ross, Peter; Wayland, Mark

    2015-03-15

    This review summarizes our current state of knowledge regarding the potential biological effects of mercury (Hg) exposure on fish and wildlife in the Canadian Arctic. Although Hg in most freshwater fish from northern Canada was not sufficiently elevated to be of concern, a few lakes in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut contained fish of certain species (e.g. northern pike, Arctic char) whose muscle Hg concentrations exceeded an estimated threshold range (0.5-1.0 μg g(-1) wet weight) within which adverse biological effects begin to occur. Marine fish species generally had substantially lower Hg concentrations than freshwater fish; but the Greenland shark, a long-lived predatory species, had mean muscle Hg concentrations exceeding the threshold range for possible effects on health or reproduction. An examination of recent egg Hg concentrations for marine birds from the Canadian Arctic indicated that mean Hg concentration in ivory gulls from Seymour Island fell within the threshold range associated with adverse effects on reproduction in birds. Mercury concentrations in brain tissue of beluga whales and polar bears were generally lower than levels associated with neurotoxicity in mammals, but were sometimes high enough to cause subtle neurochemical changes that can precede overt neurotoxicity. Harbour seals from western Hudson Bay had elevated mean liver Hg concentrations along with comparatively high muscle Hg concentrations indicating potential health effects from methylmercury (MeHg) exposure on this subpopulation. Because current information is generally insufficient to determine with confidence whether Hg exposure is impacting the health of specific fish or wildlife populations in the Canadian Arctic, biological effects studies should comprise a major focus of future Hg research in the Canadian Arctic. Additionally, studies on cellular interactions between Hg and selenium (Se) are required to better account for potential protective effects of Se on Hg

  11. Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Systems biology seeks to study biological systems as a whole, contrary to the reductionist approach that has dominated biology. Such a view of biological systems emanating from strong foundations of molecular level understanding of the individual components in terms of their form, function and interactions is promising to ...

  12. Students' Participation in an Interdisciplinary, Socioscientific Issues Based Undergraduate Human Biology Major and Their Understanding of Scientific Inquiry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eastwood, Jennifer L.; Sadler, Troy D.; Sherwood, Robert D.; Schlegel, Whitney M.

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine whether Socioscientific Issues (SSI) based learning environments affect university students' epistemological understanding of scientific inquiry differently from traditional science educational contexts. We identify and compare conceptions of scientific inquiry of students participating in an…

  13. Manipulatives-Based Laboratory for Majors Biology – a Hands-On Approach to Understanding Respiration and Photosynthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah M. Boomer

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The first course in our year-long introductory series for Biology majors encompasses four learning units: biological molecules and cells, metabolism, genetics, and evolution. Of these, the metabolism unit, which includes respiration and photosynthesis, has shown the lowest student exam scores, least interest, and lowest laboratory ratings. Consequently, we hypothesized that modeling metabolic processes in the laboratory would improve student content learning during this course unit. Specifically, we developed manipulatives-based laboratory exercises that combined paper cutouts, movable blocks, and large diagrams of the cell. In particular, our novel use of connecting LEGO blocks allowed students to move model electrons and phosphates between molecules and within defined spaces of the cell. We assessed student learning using both formal (content indicators and attitude surveys and informal (the identification of misconceptions or discussions with students approaches. On the metabolism unit content exam, student performance improved by 46% over pretest scores and by the end of the course, the majority of students rated metabolism as their most-improved (43% and favorite (33% subject as compared with other unit topics. The majority of students rated manipulatives-based labs as very helpful, as compared to non-manipulatives-based labs. In this report, we will demonstrate that students made learning gains across all content areas, but most notably in the unit that covered respiration and photosynthesis.

  14. Below the Callus Surface: Applying Paleohistological Techniques to Understand the Biology of Bone Healing in Skeletonized Human Remains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assis, Sandra; Keenleyside, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Bone trauma is a common occurrence in human skeletal remains. Macroscopic and imaging scrutiny is the approach most currently used to analyze and describe trauma. Nevertheless, this line of inquiry may not be sufficient to accurately identify the type of traumatic lesion and the associated degree of bone healing. To test the usefulness of histology in the examination of bone healing biology, we used an integrative approach that combines gross inspection and microscopy. Six bone samples belonging to 5 adult individuals with signs of bone trauma were collected from the Human Identified Skeletal Collection from the Museu Bocage (Lisbon, Portugal). Previous to sampling, the lesions were described according to their location, morphology, and healing status. After sampling, the bone specimens were prepared for plane light and polarized light analysis. The histological analysis was pivotal: (1) to differentiate between types of traumatic lesions; (2) to ascertain the posttraumatic interval, and (3) to diagnose other associated pathological conditions. The outer surface of a bone lesion may not give a complete picture of the biology of the tissue's response. Accordingly, microscopic analysis is essential to differentiate, characterize, and classify trauma signs. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  15. Robustness leads close to the edge of chaos in coupled map networks: toward the understanding of biological networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Nen; Kikuchi, Macoto

    2013-05-01

    Dynamics in biological networks are, in general, robust against several perturbations. We investigate a coupled map network as a model motivated by gene regulatory networks and design systems that are robust against phenotypic perturbations (perturbations in dynamics), as well as systems that are robust against mutation (perturbations in network structure). To achieve such a design, we apply a multicanonical Monte Carlo method. Analysis based on the maximum Lyapunov exponent and parameter sensitivity shows that systems with marginal stability, which are regarded as systems at the edge of chaos, emerge when robustness against network perturbations is required. This emergence of the edge of chaos is a self-organization phenomenon and does not need a fine tuning of parameters.

  16. Biological warfare warriors, secrecy and pure science in the Cold War: how to understand dialogue and the classifications of science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bud, Robert

    2014-01-01

    This paper uses a case study from the Cold War to reflect on the meaning at the time of the term 'Pure Science'. In 1961, four senior scientists from Britain's biological warfare centre at Porton Down visited Moscow both attending an International Congress and visiting Russian microbiological and biochemical laboratories. The reports of the British scientists in talking about a limited range of topics encountered in the Soviet Union expressed qualities of openness, sociologists of the time associated with pure science. The paper reflects on the discourses of "Pure Science", secrecy and security in the Cold War. Using Bakhtin's approach, I suggest the cordial communication between scientists from opposing sides can be seen in terms of the performance, or speaking, of one language among several at their disposal. Pure science was the language they were allowed to share outside their institutions, and indeed political blocs.

  17. The paths of mortality: how understanding the biology of aging can help explain systems behavior of single cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crane, Matthew M; Kaeberlein, Matt

    2018-04-01

    Aging is a fundamental aspect of life, yet also one of the most confounding. In individual cells, aging results in a progressive decline which affects all organelles and reduces a cell's ability to maintain homeostasis. Because of the interconnected nature of cellular systems, the failure of even a single organelle can have cascading effects. We are just beginning to understand the dramatic physiological changes that occur during aging. Because most aging research has focused on population dynamics, or differences between wild-type and mutant populations, single-cell behavior has been largely overlooked. An open question is whether aging cells are defined by predictable sequences of physiological changes, or whether they proceed along divergent aging trajectories defined by whichever system begins to fail first. Can aging be best characterized by a cell-cycle like model with stereotyped states all cells progress through, or a Waddington landscape with divergent trajectories? Here we present work on understanding the changing physiological states of aging cells, why it will impact systems and synthetic biologists, and how the systems community can contribute significantly to the study of aging.

  18. Understanding the adsorption interface of polyelectrolyte coating on redox active nanoparticles using soft particle electrokinetics and its biological activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saraf, Shashank; Neal, Craig J; Das, Soumen; Barkam, Swetha; McCormack, Rameech; Seal, Sudipta

    2014-04-23

    The application of cerium oxide nanoparticles (CNPs) for therapeutic purposes requires a stable dispersion of nanoparticles in a biological environment. The objective of this study is to tailor the properties of polyelectrolyte coated CNPs as a function of molecular weight to achieve a stable and catalytic active dispersion. The coating of CNPs with polyacrylic acid (PAA) has increased the dispersion stability of CNPs and enhanced the catalytic ability. The stability of PAA coating was analyzed using the change in the Gibbs free energy computed by the Langmuir adsorption model. The adsorption isotherms were determined using soft particle electrokinetics which overcomes the challenges presented by other techniques. The change in Gibbs free energy was highest for CNPs coated with PAA of 250 kg/mol indicating the most stable coating. The change in free energy for PAA of 100 kg/mol coated CNPs was 85% lower than the PAA of 250 kg/mol coated CNPs. This significant difference is caused by the strong adsorption of PAA of 100 kg/mol on CNPs. Catalytic activity of PAA-CNPs is assessed by the catalase enzymatic mimetic activity of nanoparticles. The catalase activity was higher for PAA coated CNPs as compared to bare CNPs which indicated preferential adsorption of hydrogen peroxide induced by coating. This indicates that the catalase activity is also affected by the structure of the coating layer.

  19. 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.

  20. Problem-Centered Supplemental Instruction in Biology: Influence on Content Recall, Content Understanding, and Problem Solving Ability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardner, Joel; Belland, Brian R.

    2017-08-01

    To address the need for effective, efficient ways to apply active learning in undergraduate biology courses, in this paper, we propose a problem-centered approach that utilizes supplemental web-based instructional materials based on principles of active learning. We compared two supplementary web-based modules using active learning strategies: the first used Merrill's First Principles of Instruction as a framework for organizing multiple active learning strategies; the second used a traditional web-based approach. Results indicated that (a) the First Principles group gained significantly from pretest to posttest at the Remember level ( t(40) = -1.432, p = 0.08, ES = 0.4) and at the Problem Solving level ( U = 142.5, N1 = 21, N2 = 21, p = .02, ES = 0.7) and (b) the Traditional group gained significantly from pretest to posttest at the Remember level ( t(36) = 1.762, p = 0.043, ES = 0.6). Those in the First Principles group were significantly more likely than the traditional group to be confident in their ability to solve problems in the future (χ2 (2, N = 40) = 3.585, p = 0.09).

  1. III. Cellular ultrastructures in situ as key to understanding tumor energy metabolism: biological significance of the Warburg effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witkiewicz, Halina; Oh, Phil; Schnitzer, Jan E

    2013-01-01

    cell cycle through mitosis, indicated that Warburg effect had a fundamental biological significance extending to non-malignant tissues. The approach used here could facilitate integration of accumulated cyber knowledge on cancer metabolism into predictive science.

  2. The role of biological sciences in understanding the genesis and a new therapeutic approach to Alzheimer’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugenia Tęgowska

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper contrasts the historical view on causal factors in Alzheimer’s disease (AD with the modern concept of the symptoms’ origin. Biological sciences dealing with cell structure and physiology enabled comprehension of the role of mitochondrial defects in the processes of formation of neurofibrillary tangles and β-amyloid, which in turn gives hope for developing a new, more effective therapeutic strategy for AD. It has been established that although mitochondria constantly generate free radicals, from which they are protected by their own defensive systems, in some situations these systems become deregulated, which leads to free radical-based mitochondrial defects. This causes an energetic deficit in neurons and a further increase in the free radical pool. As a result, due to compensation processes, formation of tangles and/or acceleration of β-amyloid production takes place. The nature of these processes is initially a protective one, due to their anti-oxidative action, but as the amount of the formations increases, their beneficial effect wanes. They become a storage place for substances enhancing free radical processes, which makes them toxic themselves. It is such an approach to the primary causal factor for AD which lies at the roots of the new view on AD therapy, suggesting the use of methylene blue-based drugs, laser or intranasally applied insulin. A necessary condition, however, for these methods’ effectiveness is definitely an earlier diagnosis of the disease. Although there are numerous diagnostic methods for AD, their low specificity and high price, often accompanied by a considerable level of patient discomfort, make them unsuitable for early, prodromal screening. In this matter a promising method may be provided using an olfactory test, which is an inexpensive and non-invasive method and thus suitable for screening, although as a test of low specificity, it should be combined with other methods. Introducing new methods

  3. Engaging Students in Authentic Microbiology Research in an Introductory Biology Laboratory Course is Correlated with Gains in Student Understanding of the Nature of Authentic Research and Critical Thinking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brittany J. Gasper

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Recent recommendations for biology education highlight the role of authentic research experiences early in undergraduate education as a means of increasing the number and quality of biology majors. These experiences will inform students on the nature of science, increase their confidence in doing science, as well as foster critical thinking skills, an area that has been lacking despite it being one of the desired outcomes at undergraduate institutions and with future employers. With these things in mind, we have developed an introductory biology laboratory course where students design and execute an authentic microbiology research project. Students in this course are assimilated into the community of researchers by engaging in scholarly activities such as participating in inquiry, reading scientific literature, and communicating findings in written and oral formats. After three iterations of a semester-long laboratory course, we found that students who took the course showed a significant increase in their understanding of the nature of authentic research and their level of critical thinking skills.

  4. 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

  5. Female high school biology students' biofilm-focused learning: The contributions of three instructional strategies to patterns in understanding and motivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ales, Jo Dale Hill

    2000-12-01

    This exploratory study examined three instructional strategies used with female high school biology students. The relative contributions of the strategies to student understanding of microbiology and motivation in science were analyzed. The science education community targeted underachievement in science by implementing changes in content and practices (NRC, 1996). Research suggested that teachers facilitate learnirig environments based on human constructivism (Mintzes, Wandersee, & Novak, 1997) that is rooted in meaningful learning theory (Ausubel, Novak & Hanesian, 1978). Teachers were advised to use both visual and verbal instructional strategies (Paivio, 1983) and encourage students to construct understandings by connecting new experiences to prior knowledge. The American Society for Microbiology supports the study of microorganisms because of their prominence in the biosphere (ASK 1997). In this study, two participating teachers taught selected microbiology concepts while focused on the cutting edge science of biofilms. Biology students accessed digitized biofilm images on an ASM web page and adapted them into products, communicated with biofilm researchers, and adapted a professional-quality instructional video for cross-age teaching. The study revealed improvements in understanding as evidenced on a written test; however, differences in learnirig outcomes were not significant. Other data, including student journal reflections, observations of student interactions, and student clinical interviews indicate that students were engaged in cutting edge science and adapted biofilm images in ways that increased understanding of microbiology (with respect to both science content and as a way of knowing) and motivation. An ASM CD-ROM of the images did not effectively enhance learning and this study provides insights into what could make it more successful. It also identifies why, in most cases, students' E-mail communication with biofilm researchers was unsuccessful

  6. Building Capacity in Understanding Foundational Biology Concepts: A K-12 Learning Progression in Genetics Informed by Research on Children's Thinking and Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmesky, Rowhea

    2013-06-01

    This article describes the substance, structure, and rationale of a learning progression in genetics spanning kindergarten through twelfth grade (K-12). The learning progression is designed to build a foundation towards understanding protein structure and activity and should be viewed as one possible pathway to understanding concepts of genetics and ultimately protein expression, based on the existing research. The kindergarten through fifth grade segment reflects findings that show children have a rich knowledge base and sophisticated cognitive abilities, and therefore, is designed so that elementary-aged children can learn content in deep and abstract manners, as well as apply scientific explanations appropriate to their knowledge level. The article also details the LP segment facilitating secondary students' understanding by outlining the overlapping conceptual frames which guide student learning from cell structures and functions to cell splitting (both cell division and gamete formation) to genetics as trait transmission, culminating in genetics as protein expression. The learning progression product avoids the use of technical language, which has been identified as a prominent source of student misconceptions in learning cellular biology, and explicit connections between cellular and macroscopic phenomena are encouraged.

  7. Investigating the Relationship between Instructors' Use of Active-Learning Strategies and Students' Conceptual Understanding and Affective Changes in Introductory Biology: A Comparison of Two Active-Learning Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cleveland, Lacy M.; Olimpo, Jeffrey T.; DeChenne-Peters, Sue Ellen

    2017-01-01

    In response to calls for reform in undergraduate biology education, we conducted research examining how varying active-learning strategies impacted students' conceptual understanding, attitudes, and motivation in two sections of a large-lecture introductory cell and molecular biology course. Using a quasi-experimental design, we collected…

  8. 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

  9. Adaptive radiation of Pseudomonas fluorescens SBW25 in experimental microcosms provides an understanding of the evolutionary ecology and molecular biology of A-L interface biofilm formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koza, Anna; Kusmierska, Anna; McLaughlin, Kimberley; Moshynets, Olena; Spiers, Andrew J

    2017-07-03

    Combined experimental evolutionary and molecular biology approaches have been used to investigate the adaptive radiation of Pseudomonas fluorescens SBW25 in static microcosms leading to the colonisation of the air-liquid interface by biofilm-forming mutants such as the Wrinkly Spreader (WS). In these microcosms, the ecosystem engineering of the early wild-type colonists establishes the niche space for subsequent WS evolution and colonisation. Random WS mutations occurring in the developing population that deregulate diguanylate cyclases and c-di-GMP homeostasis result in cellulose-based biofilms at the air-liquid interface. These structures allow Wrinkly Spreaders to intercept O2 diffusing into the liquid column and limit the growth of competitors lower down. As the biofilm matures, competition increasingly occurs between WS lineages, and niche divergence within the biofilm may support further diversification before system failure when the structure finally sinks. A combination of pleiotropic and epistasis effects, as well as secondary mutations, may explain variations in WS phenotype and fitness. Understanding how mutations subvert regulatory networks to express intrinsic genome potential and key innovations providing a selective advantage in novel environments is key to understanding the versatility of bacteria, and how selection and ecological opportunity can rapidly lead to substantive changes in phenotype and in community structure and function. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Conservation and function of Rab small GTPases in Entamoeba: annotation of E. invadens Rab and its use for the understanding of Entamoeba biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakada-Tsukui, Kumiko; Saito-Nakano, Yumiko; Husain, Afzal; Nozaki, Tomoyoshi

    2010-11-01

    Entamoeba invadens is a reptilian enteric protozoan parasite closely related to the human pathogen Entamoeba histolytica and a good model organism of encystation. To understand the molecular mechanism of vesicular trafficking involved in the encystation of Entamoeba, we examined the conservation of Rab small GTPases between the two species. E. invadens has over 100 Rab genes, similar to E. histolytica. Most of the Rab subfamilies are conserved between the two species, while a number of species-specific Rabs are also present. We annotated all E. invadens Rabs according to the previous nomenclature [Saito-Nakano, Y., Loftus, B.J., Hall, N., Nozaki, T., 2005. The diversity of Rab GTPases in Entamoeba histolytica. Experimental Parasitology 110, 244-252]. Comparative genomic analysis suggested that the fundamental vesicular traffic machinery is well conserved, while there are species-specific protein transport mechanisms. We also reviewed the function of Rabs in Entamoeba, and proposed the use of the annotation of E. invadens Rab genes to understand the ubiquitous importance of Rab-mediated membrane trafficking during important biological processes including differentiation in Entamoeba. (c) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. A Dual Case Study: Students' Perceptions, Self-Efficacy and Understanding of the Nature of Science in Varied Introductory Biology Laboratories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quigley, Dena Beth Boans

    Since World War II, science education has been at the forefront of curricular reforms. Although the philosophical approach to science education has changed numerous times, the importance of the laboratory has not waned. A laboratory is meant to allow students to encounter scientific concepts in a very real, hands-on way so that they are able to either recreate experiments that have given rise to scientific theories or to use science to understand a new idea. As the interactive portion of science courses, the laboratory should not only reinforce conceptual ideas, but help students to understand the process of science and interest them in learning more about science. However, most laboratories have fallen into a safe pattern having teachers and students follow a scientific recipe, removing the understanding of and interest in science for many participants. In this study, two non-traditional laboratories are evaluated and compared with a traditional laboratory in an effort to measure student satisfaction, self-efficacy, attitudes towards science, and finally their epistemology of the nature of science (NOS). Students in all populations were administered a survey at the beginning and the end of their spring 2016 laboratory, and the survey was a mixture of qualitative questions and quantitative instruments. Overall, students who participated in one of the non-traditional labs rated their satisfaction higher and used affirming supportive statements. They also had significant increases in self-efficacy from pre to post, while the students in the traditional laboratory had a significant decrease. The students in the traditional laboratory had significant changed in attitudes towards science, as did the students in one of the non-traditional laboratories. All students lacked a firm grasp of the tenets of NOS, although one laboratory that includes explicit discussions of NOS saw improvement in at least on tenet. Data for two non-major biology laboratory populations was

  12. Dominance as adaptive stressing and ranking of males, serving to allocate reproduction by differential self-suppressed fertility: towards a fully biological understanding of social systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moxon, Steve

    2009-07-01

    mutually exclusive of the consensus model, that dominance/DH is: same-sex only; present whenever, within one or both sexes, there is potential conflict over reproduction, and there is no mechanism to preclude this, but otherwise is absent; always associated with some degree of differential physiological reproductive suppression. This new conceptualization of dominance has major implications for the social as well as biological sciences, in that resource-competition models of the basis of sociality will have to give way to a thoroughgoing biological understanding that places centre-stage not resources but reproduction; with consequent radical revision of notions of 'power'.

  13. Entendendo o papel de marcadores biológicos no câncer de pulmão Understanding the role of biological markers in lung cancer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    VERA LUIZA CAPELOZZI

    2001-11-01

    ógicos intermediários.Biological markers are cellular, structural and biochemical components that can define cellular as well as molecular changes in both normal and neoplastic cells. There are two types of biological markers: 1 intermediate markers that evaluate cellular and molecular alterations before malignancy occurs; and 2 diagnostic markers, present in association with malignancy. The identification and validation of biological markers for clinical use are performed in stages: ¨ initial identification in cell cultures of the tumor; ¨ testing of the marker in tissues obtained in biopsies of patients with an established diagnosis of the tumor; ¨ testing of biopsies of normal tissues and tissues with an inflammatory process; ¨ sputum, blood or urine tests for validation as a non-invasive test that can be used in high-risk populations. Sorologic and histopathologic biological markers are cellular, structural and biochemical components found in both normal and neoplastic cells that can be quantitatively assessed by biochemical, immunological and molecular methods in the body fluids or tissues, respectively, and may be associated with malignancies and, possibly, with the neoplastic organ. Biological markers are studied in diverse primary neoplasms. However, few of them proved to be clinically valuable. The role of biological markers in lung cancer patients remains unclear because only a small number of markers has been properly assessed. The aim of this paper is to understand the role of sorologic and histologic biological markers in the prognosis and survival of lung cancer patients based on our previous works. Furthermore, we present a future perspective of the early detection of lung cancer on the basis of the role of intermediate biological markers.

  14. Is synthetic biology mechanical biology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holm, Sune

    2015-12-01

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

  15. Teaching Teaching & Understanding Understanding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2006-01-01

    "Teaching Teaching & Understanding Understanding" is a 19-minute award-winning short-film about teaching at university and higher-level educational institutions. It is based on the "Constructive Alignment" theory developed by Prof. John Biggs. The film delivers a foundation for understanding what...

  16. Using a Professional Development Program for Enhancing Chilean Biology Teachers' Understanding of Nature of Science (NOS) and Their Perceptions about Using History of Science to Teach NOS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavez, José M.; Vergara, Claudia A.; Santibañez, David; Cofré, Hernán

    2016-01-01

    A number of authors have recognized the importance of understanding the nature of science (NOS) for scientific literacy. Different instructional strategies such as decontextualized, hands-on inquiry, and history of science (HOS) activities have been proposed for teaching NOS. This article seeks to understand the contribution of HOS in enhancing…

  17. The "What Is a System" Reflection Interview as a Knowledge Integration Activity for High School Students' Understanding of Complex Systems in Human Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripto, Jaklin; Ben-Zvi Assaraf, Orit; Snapir, Zohar; Amit, Miriam

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the reflection interview as a tool for assessing and facilitating the use of "systems language" amongst 11th grade students who have recently completed their first year of high school biology. Eighty-three students composed two concept maps in the 10th grade--one at the beginning of the school year and one at its end.…

  18. Investigating the Relationship between Instructors' Use of Active-Learning Strategies and Students' Conceptual Understanding and Affective Changes in Introductory Biology: A Comparison of Two Active-Learning Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cleveland, Lacy M; Olimpo, Jeffrey T; DeChenne-Peters, Sue Ellen

    2017-01-01

    In response to calls for reform in undergraduate biology education, we conducted research examining how varying active-learning strategies impacted students' conceptual understanding, attitudes, and motivation in two sections of a large-lecture introductory cell and molecular biology course. Using a quasi-experimental design, we collected quantitative data to compare participants' conceptual understanding, attitudes, and motivation in the biological sciences across two contexts that employed different active-learning strategies and that were facilitated by unique instructors. Students participated in either graphic organizer/worksheet activities or clicker-based case studies. After controlling for demographic and presemester affective differences, we found that students in both active-learning environments displayed similar and significant learning gains. In terms of attitudinal and motivational data, significant differences were observed for two attitudinal measures. Specifically, those students who had participated in graphic organizer/worksheet activities demonstrated more expert-like attitudes related to their enjoyment of biology and ability to make real-world connections. However, all motivational and most attitudinal data were not significantly different between the students in the two learning environments. These data reinforce the notion that active learning is associated with conceptual change and suggests that more research is needed to examine the differential effects of varying active-learning strategies on students' attitudes and motivation in the domain. © 2017 L. M. Cleveland et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 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).

  19. Understanding the biological invasion risk posed by the global wildlife trade: propagule pressure drives the introduction and establishment of Nearctic turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Díaz, Pablo; Ross, Joshua V; Ayres, César; Cassey, Phillip

    2015-03-01

    Biological invasions are a key component of human-induced global change. The continuing increase in global wildlife trade has raised concerns about the parallel increase in the number of new invasive species. However, the factors that link the wildlife trade to the biological invasion process are still poorly understood. Moreover, there are analytical challenges in researching the role of global wildlife trade in biological invasions, particularly issues related to the under-reporting of introduced and established populations in areas with reduced sampling effort. In this work, we use high-quality data on the international trade in Nearctic turtles (1999-2009) coupled with a statistical modelling framework, which explicitly accounts for detection, to investigate the factors that influence the introduction (release, or escape into the wild) of globally traded Nearctic turtles and the establishment success (self-sustaining exotic populations) of slider turtles (Trachemys scripta), the most frequently traded turtle species. We found that the introduction of a species was influenced by the total number of turtles exported to a jurisdiction and the age at maturity of the species, while the establishment success of slider turtles was best associated with the propagule number (number of release events), and the number of native turtles in the jurisdiction of introduction. These results indicate both a direct and indirect association between the wildlife trade and the introduction of turtles and establishment success of slider turtles, respectively. Our results highlight the existence of gaps in the number of globally recorded introduction events and established populations of slider turtles, although the expected bias is low. We emphasize the importance of researching independently the factors that affect the different stages of the invasion pathway. Critically, we observe that the number of traded individuals might not always be an adequate proxy for propagule pressure

  20. Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance and smoldering multiple myeloma: a review of the current understanding of epidemiology, biology, risk stratification, and management of myeloma precursor disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Amit; Ghobrial, Irene M

    2013-03-01

    The term monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) was coined in 1978. The recent advances in our knowledge about MGUS and smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM) have helped us better understand the pathogenesis of myeloma. It seems that myeloma evolves from a precursor state in almost all cases. We do not completely understand the multistep process from the precursor state to myeloma, but studies like whole genome sequencing continue to improve our understanding of this process. The process of transformation may not be linear acquisition of changes, but rather a branched heterogeneous process. Clinical features that are prognostic of rapid transformation have been identified, but no specific molecular markers have been identified. Even with recent advances, multiple myeloma remains an incurable disease in the vast majority, and intervening at the precursor state provides a unique opportunity to alter the natural history of the disease. A limitation is that a vast majority of patients with precursor disease, especially low-risk MGUS, will never progress to myeloma in their lifetime, and treating these patients is not only unnecessary but may be potentially harmful. The challenge is to identify a subset of patients with the precursor state that would definitely progress to myeloma and in whom interventions will have a meaningful impact. As our understanding of the molecular and genetic processes improves, these studies will guide the selection of high-risk patients more appropriately and ultimately direct a tailored management strategy to either delay progression to symptomatic myeloma or even "cure" a person at this premalignant stage. ©2012 AACR.

  1. Final Report: Filling Knowledge Gaps in Biological Networks: Integrated Global Approaches to Understand H{sub 2} Metabolism in Chlamydomonas Reinhardtii

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grossman, Arthur

    2012-05-01

    The major goal of our part of this project has been to generate mutants in fermentation metabolism and begin to decipher how lesions in the pathways associated with fermentation metabolism impact both H{sub 2} production and the production of other metabolites that accumulate as cells become anoxic. We are also trying to understand how metabolic pathways are regulated as O{sub 2} in the environment becomes depleted.

  2. Understanding the fouling of UF/MF hollow fibres of biologically treated wastewaters using advanced EfOM characterization and statistical tools

    KAUST Repository

    Filloux, Emmanuelle

    2012-08-01

    Five secondary effluents and a river water source were characterized using size exclusion chromatography (LC-OCD-UVD-OND) and emission-excitation matrix (EEM) fluorescence spectroscopy in order to identify the major effluent organic matter (EfOM) fractions responsible for membrane fouling. This study showed the feasibility of coupling fluorescence EEM and LC-OCD-UVD-OND to investigate the fouling potential as well as a means to differentiate natural organic matter (NOM) from EfOM. The secondary effluents and river water showed a significant difference in organic matter characteristics and fouling potential, highlighting the importance of biological processes and the feed water source on EfOM characteristics and fouling potential. On the basis of statistical analysis, protein-like substances were found to be highly correlated to the fouling potential of secondary effluents. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

  3. Biological rhythms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halberg, F.

    1975-01-01

    An overview is given of basic features of biological rhythms. The classification of periodic behavior of physical and psychological characteristics as circadian, circannual, diurnal, and ultradian is discussed, and the notion of relativistic time as it applies in biology is examined. Special attention is given to circadian rhythms which are dependent on the adrenocortical cycle. The need for adequate understanding of circadian variations in the basic physiological indicators of an individual (heart rate, body temperature, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, etc.) to ensure the effectiveness of prophylactic and therapeutic measures is stressed.

  4. 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...

  5. Working hard to make a simple definition of synergies. Comment on: "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alessandro, Cristiano; Oliveira Barroso, Filipe; Tresch, Matthew

    2016-07-01

    The paper ;Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands; [1] presents a comprehensive review of the work carried out as part of the EU funded project ;The Hand Embodied;. The work uses the concept of ;synergy; to study the neuromuscular control of the human hand and to design novel robotics systems. The project has been very productive and has made important contributions. We are therefore confident that it will lead to further advancements and experiments in the future.

  6. The `What is a system' reflection interview as a knowledge integration activity for high school students' understanding of complex systems in human biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripto, Jaklin; Ben-Zvi Assaraf, Orit; Snapir, Zohar; Amit, Miriam

    2016-03-01

    This study examined the reflection interview as a tool for assessing and facilitating the use of 'systems language' amongst 11th grade students who have recently completed their first year of high school biology. Eighty-three students composed two concept maps in the 10th grade-one at the beginning of the school year and one at its end. The first part of the interview is dedicated to guiding the students through comparing their two concept maps and by means of both explicit and non-explicit teaching. Our study showed that the explicit guidance in comparing the two concept maps was more effective than the non-explicit, eliciting a variety of different, more specific, types of interactions and patterns (e.g. 'hierarchy', 'dynamism', 'homeostasis') in the students' descriptions of the human body system. The reflection interview as a knowledge integration activity was found to be an effective tool for assessing the subjects' conceptual models of 'system complexity', and for identifying those aspects of a system that are most commonly misunderstood.

  7. What has made deer farming in New Zealand so successful? The importance of venison quality, understanding the industry, the market and the biology of the animals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. Pearse

    1990-09-01

    Full Text Available In summarising these aspects of success within the NZ deer industry we can note: (1 NZ traditional farming skills of pasture based production have been readily adapted to deer farming. (2 The industry has grown with strength through the diversity of its participants, leading farmers, innovative researchers, business investors and leaders and the NZDFA and its membership. All are united in their determination that market signals, rather than farm production demands should shape the development of venison supply and presentation. (3 The frank and rapid exchange of research results, farmer innovation, market information and exchange of experience and ideas within the industry. (4 The overwhelming commitment to quality production. Biologically, deer has their own contributing attributes: (a they are intelligent and easy to farm; (b they are efficient converters of pasture and supplements to venison or to progeny; (c they thrive throughout NZ varied agricultural terrain on native grasses or improved pasture, and have a healthy and long productive life; (d they have enormous climatic and environmental tolerance, a defined breeding season and predictable calving pattern; (e they are immensely seasonal, and now, when feeding and breeding requirements are well understood in terms of that seasonality, productive growth targets are readily set and achieved to accommodate the market signal; (f they are simple to manage with a minimum of labour and physical inputs.

  8. The use of wavelength-selective plastic cladding materials in horticulture: understanding of crop and fungal responses through the assessment of biological spectral weighting functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Nigel D; Jacobson, Rob J; Taylor, Anna; Wargent, Jason J; Moore, Jason P

    2005-01-01

    Plant responses to light spectral quality can be exploited to deliver a range of agronomically desirable end points in protected crops. This can be achieved using plastics with specific spectral properties as crop covers. We have studied the responses of a range of crops to plastics that have either (a) increased transmission of UV compared with standard horticultural covers, (b) decreased transmission of UV or (c) increased the ratio of red (R) : far-red (FR) radiation. Both the UV-transparent and R : FR increasing films reduced leaf area and biomass, offering potential alternatives to chemical growth regulators. The UV-opaque film increased growth, but while this may be useful in some crops, there were trade-offs with elements of quality, such as pigmentation and taste. UV manipulation may also influence disease control. Increasing UV inhibited not only the pathogenic fungus Botrytis cinerea but also the disease biocontrol agent Trichoderma harzianum. Unlike B. cinerea, T. harzianum was highly sensitive to UV-A radiation. These fungal responses and those for plant growth in the growth room and the field under different plastics are analyzed in terms of alternative biological spectral weighting functions (BSWF). The role of BSWF in assessing general patterns of response to UV modification in horticulture is also discussed.

  9. Neuro-prosthetic interplay. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by M. Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schieber, Marc H.

    2016-07-01

    Control of the human hand has been both difficult to understand scientifically and difficult to emulate technologically. The article by Santello and colleagues in the current issue of Physics of Life Reviews[1] highlights the accelerating pace of interaction between the neuroscience of controlling body movement and the engineering of robotic hands that can be used either autonomously or as part of a motor neuroprosthesis, an artificial body part that moves under control from a human subject's own nervous system. Motor neuroprostheses typically involve a brain-computer interface (BCI) that takes signals from the subject's nervous system or muscles, interprets those signals through a decoding algorithm, and then applies the resulting output to control the artificial device.

  10. Understanding the uneven spread of HIV within Africa: comparative study of biologic, behavioral, and contextual factors in rural populations in Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boerma, J Ties; Gregson, Simon; Nyamukapa, Constance; Urassa, Mark

    2003-10-01

    Large differences in the spread of HIV have been observed within sub-Saharan Africa. The goal was to identify factors that could explain differences in the spread of HIV within sub-Saharan African populations. Ecologic comparison of data from population-based surveys in high and relatively low HIV prevalence rural areas in Zimbabwe, Manicaland, and Tanzania, Kisesa. HIV prevalence in Manicaland and Kisesa was 15.4% and 5.3% in men aged 17-44 years and 21.1% and 8.0% in women aged 15-44 years (odds ratios, 3.3 and 3.1, respectively). Marriage is later, spatial mobility more common, cohabitation with marital partners less frequent, education levels are higher, and male circumcision is less common in Manicaland. However, adjustment for differences in these factors increased the odds ratios for HIV infection in Manicaland versus Kisesa to 6.9 and 4.8 for men and women, respectively. Sexually transmitted infection levels were similar, but syphilis was only common in Kisesa. Respondents in Kisesa started sex earlier and reported more sexual partners. Age differences between partners were similar in the 2 locations. Substantial differences exist between the contemporary sociodemographic profiles of rural Manicaland and Kisesa. However, these differences did not translate into measurable differences in the biologic or behavioral factors for which data were available and did not explain the much higher HIV prevalence found in Manicaland. These findings might reflect more extensive AIDS-selective mortality and behavior change or greater bias in reporting of sexual behavior in Zimbabwe.

  11. Mycosphaerella fijiensis, the black leaf streak pathogen of banana: progress towards understanding pathogen biology and detection, disease development, and the challenges of control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Churchill, Alice C L

    2011-05-01

    primary hosts of M. fijiensis, the ornamental plant Heliconia psittacorum has been reported as an alternative host. Several valuable tools and resources have been developed to overcome some of the challenges of studying this host-pathogen system. These include a DNA-mediated fungal transformation system and the ability to conduct targeted gene disruptions, reliable quantitative plant bioassays, diagnostic probes to detect and differentiate M. fijiensis from related pathogens and to distinguish strains of different mating types, and a genome sequence that has revealed a wealth of gene sequences and molecular markers to be utilized in functional and population biology studies. http://bananas.bioversityinternational.org/, http://genome.jgi-psf.org/Mycfi2/Mycfi2.home.html, http://www.isppweb.org/names_banana_pathogen.asp#fun, http://www.promusa.org/. © 2010 THE AUTHOR. MOLECULAR PLANT PATHOLOGY © 2010 BSPP AND BLACKWELL PUBLISHING LTD.

  12. Biologic Scaffolds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Alessandra; Naranjo, Juan Diego; Londono, Ricardo; Badylak, Stephen F

    2017-09-01

    Biologic scaffold materials composed of allogeneic or xenogeneic extracellular matrix are commonly used for the repair and functional reconstruction of injured and missing tissues. These naturally occurring bioscaffolds are manufactured by the removal of the cellular content from source tissues while preserving the structural and functional molecular units of the remaining extracellular matrix (ECM). The mechanisms by which these bioscaffolds facilitate constructive remodeling and favorable clinical outcomes include release or creation of effector molecules that recruit endogenous stem/progenitor cells to the site of scaffold placement and modulation of the innate immune response, specifically the activation of an anti-inflammatory macrophage phenotype. The methods by which ECM biologic scaffolds are prepared, the current understanding of in vivo scaffold remodeling, and the associated clinical outcomes are discussed in this article. Copyright © 2017 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  13. Bioinstrumentation: Tools for Understanding Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wandersee, James H., Ed.; And Others

    This book was written to help introductory biology teachers gain a basic understanding of contemporary bioinstrumentation and the uses to which it is put in the laboratory. It includes topics that are most basic to understanding the nature of biology. The book is divided into five sections: (1) "Separation and Identification" that includes…

  14. 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…

  15. Systems biology in animal sciences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Woelders, H.; Pas, te M.F.W.; Bannink, A.; Veerkamp, R.F.; Smits, M.A.

    2011-01-01

    Systems biology is a rapidly expanding field of research and is applied in a number of biological disciplines. In animal sciences, omics approaches are increasingly used, yielding vast amounts of data, but systems biology approaches to extract understanding from these data of biological processes

  16. Industrial chemical exposure: guidelines for biological monitoring

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lauwerys, Robert R; Hoet, Perrine

    2001-01-01

    .... With Third Edition of Industrial Chemical Exposure you will understand the objectives of biological monitoring, the types of biological monitoring methods, their advantages and limitations, as well...

  17. Understanding Carbohydrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Size: A A A Listen En Español Understanding Carbohydrates How much and what type of carbohydrate foods ... glucose levels in your target range. Explore: Understanding Carbohydrates Glycemic Index and Diabetes Learn about the glycemic ...

  18. The Biology of Behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broom, D. M.

    1981-01-01

    Discusses topics to aid in understanding animal behavior, including the value of the biological approach to psychology, functional systems, optimality and fitness, universality of environmental effects on behavior, and evolution of social behavior. (DS)

  19. Understanding classification

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Subianto, M.

    2009-01-01

    In practical data analysis, the understandability of models plays an important role in their acceptance. In the data mining literature, however, understandability plays is hardly ever mentioned. If it is mentioned, it is interpreted as meaning that the models have to be simple. In this thesis we

  20. Embodied understanding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Western culture has inherited a view of understanding as an intellectual cognitive operation of grasping of concepts and their relations. However, cognitive science research has shown that this received intellectualist conception is substantially out of touch with how humans actually make and experience meaning. The view emerging from the mind sciences recognizes that understanding is profoundly embodied, insofar as our conceptualization and reasoning recruit sensory, motor, and affective patterns and processes to structure our understanding of, and engagement with, our world. A psychologically realistic account of understanding must begin with the patterns of ongoing interaction between an organism and its physical and cultural environments and must include both our emotional responses to changes in our body and environment, and also the actions by which we continuously transform our experience. Consequently, embodied understanding is not merely a conceptual/propositional activity of thought, but rather constitutes our most basic way of being in, and engaging with, our surroundings in a deep visceral manner.

  1. Branching processes in biology

    CERN Document Server

    Kimmel, Marek

    2015-01-01

    This book provides a theoretical background of branching processes and discusses their biological applications. Branching processes are a well-developed and powerful set of tools in the field of applied probability. The range of applications considered includes molecular biology, cellular biology, human evolution and medicine. The branching processes discussed include Galton-Watson, Markov, Bellman-Harris, Multitype, and General Processes. As an aid to understanding specific examples, two introductory chapters, and two glossaries are included that provide background material in mathematics and in biology. The book will be of interest to scientists who work in quantitative modeling of biological systems, particularly probabilists, mathematical biologists, biostatisticians, cell biologists, molecular biologists, and bioinformaticians. The authors are a mathematician and cell biologist who have collaborated for more than a decade in the field of branching processes in biology for this new edition. This second ex...

  2. Understanding semantics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thrane, Torben

    1997-01-01

    Understanding natural language is a cognitive, information-driven process. Discussing some of the consequences of this fact, the paper offers a novel look at the semantic effect of lexical nouns and the identification of reference types....

  3. Understanding Alzheimer's

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Navigation Bar Home Current Issue Past Issues Understanding Alzheimer's Past Issues / Fall 2007 Table of Contents For ... and brain scans. No treatment so far stops Alzheimer's. However, for some in the disease's early and ...

  4. Understanding homelessness

    OpenAIRE

    Somerville, Peter

    2013-01-01

    This paper reviews the literature on understanding homelessness. It criticizes approaches that ignore, distort or diminish the humanity of homeless people, or else, add little to our understanding of that humanity. In particular, it rejects what it calls “epidemiological” approaches, which deny the possibility of agency for homeless people, insofar as those approaches view the situation of those people largely as a “social fact”, to be explained in terms of causal variables or “risk factors” ...

  5. Understanding Maple

    CERN Document Server

    Thompson, Ian

    2016-01-01

    Maple is a powerful symbolic computation system that is widely used in universities around the world. This short introduction gives readers an insight into the rules that control how the system works, and how to understand, fix, and avoid common problems. Topics covered include algebra, calculus, linear algebra, graphics, programming, and procedures. Each chapter contains numerous illustrative examples, using mathematics that does not extend beyond first-year undergraduate material. Maple worksheets containing these examples are available for download from the author's personal website. The book is suitable for new users, but where advanced topics are central to understanding Maple they are tackled head-on. Many concepts which are absent from introductory books and manuals are described in detail. With this book, students, teachers and researchers will gain a solid understanding of Maple and how to use it to solve complex mathematical problems in a simple and efficient way.

  6. Biological computation

    CERN Document Server

    Lamm, Ehud

    2011-01-01

    Introduction and Biological BackgroundBiological ComputationThe Influence of Biology on Mathematics-Historical ExamplesBiological IntroductionModels and Simulations Cellular Automata Biological BackgroundThe Game of Life General Definition of Cellular Automata One-Dimensional AutomataExamples of Cellular AutomataComparison with a Continuous Mathematical Model Computational UniversalitySelf-Replication Pseudo Code Evolutionary ComputationEvolutionary Biology and Evolutionary ComputationGenetic AlgorithmsExample ApplicationsAnalysis of the Behavior of Genetic AlgorithmsLamarckian Evolution Genet

  7. Understanding physics

    CERN Document Server

    Mansfield, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Understanding Physics - Second edition is a comprehensive, yet compact, introductory physics textbook aimed at physics undergraduates and also at engineers and other scientists taking a general physics course. Written with today's students in mind, this text covers the core material required by an introductory course in a clear and refreshing way. A second colour is used throughout to enhance learning and understanding. Each topic is introduced from first principles so that the text is suitable for students without a prior background in physics. At the same time the book is designed to enable

  8. Understanding Energy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menon, Deepika; Shelby, Blake; Mattingly, Christine

    2016-01-01

    "Energy" is a term often used in everyday language. Even young children associate energy with the food they eat, feeling tired after playing soccer, or when asked to turn the lights off to save light energy. However, they may not have the scientific conceptual understanding of energy at this age. Teaching energy and matter could be…

  9. Cytoprotection of Human Endothelial Cells Against Oxidative Stress by 1-[2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9(11)-dien-28-oyl]imidazole (CDDO-Im): Application of Systems Biology to Understand the Mechanism of Action

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-04-03

    c, Phillip D. Bowman b,nn a Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine-Georgia Campus...right-tailed Fisher’s exact test was used to calculate a P value to determine the probability that each biological function assigned to that network...tailed Fisher’s exact test was used to calculate a P value to determine the probability that each biological function assigned to the entire data set

  10. Biological Age Predictors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juulia Jylhävä

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available The search for reliable indicators of biological age, rather than chronological age, has been ongoing for over three decades, and until recently, largely without success. Advances in the fields of molecular biology have increased the variety of potential candidate biomarkers that may be considered as biological age predictors. In this review, we summarize current state-of-the-art findings considering six potential types of biological age predictors: epigenetic clocks, telomere length, transcriptomic predictors, proteomic predictors, metabolomics-based predictors, and composite biomarker predictors. Promising developments consider multiple combinations of these various types of predictors, which may shed light on the aging process and provide further understanding of what contributes to healthy aging. Thus far, the most promising, new biological age predictor is the epigenetic clock; however its true value as a biomarker of aging requires longitudinal confirmation.

  11. Understanding translation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schjoldager, Anne Gram; Gottlieb, Henrik; Klitgård, Ida

    Understanding Translation is designed as a textbook for courses on the theory and practice of translation in general and of particular types of translation - such as interpreting, screen translation and literary translation. The aim of the book is to help you gain an in-depth understanding...... of the phenomenon of translation and to provide you with a conceptual framework for the analysis of various aspects of professional translation. Intended readers are students of translation and languages, but the book will also be relevant for others who are interested in the theory and practice of translation...... - translators, language teachers, translation users and literary, TV and film critics, for instance. Discussions focus on translation between Danish and English....

  12. Understanding Resilience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gang eWu

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Resilience is the ability to adapt successfully in the face of stress and adversity. Stressful life events, trauma and chronic adversity can have a substantial impact on brain function and structure, and can result in the development of PTSD, depression and other psychiatric disorders. However, most individuals do not develop such illnesses after experiencing stressful life events, and are thus thought to be resilient. Resilience as successful adaptation relies on effective responses to environmental challenges and ultimate resistance to the deleterious effects of stress, therefore a greater understanding of the factors that promote such effects is of great relevance. This review focuses on recent findings regarding genetic, epigenetic, developmental, psychosocial and neurochemical factors that are considered essential contributors to the development of resilience. Neural circuits and pathways involved in mediating resilience are also discussed. The growing understanding of resilience factors will hopefully lead to the development of new pharmacological and psychological interventions for enhancing resilience and mitigating the untoward consequences.

  13. Understand electronics

    CERN Document Server

    Bishop, Owen

    2013-01-01

    Understand Electronics provides a readable introduction to the exciting world of electronics for the student or enthusiast with little previous knowledge. The subject is treated with the minimum of mathematics and the book is extensively illustrated.This is an essential guide for the newcomer to electronics, and replaces the author's best-selling Beginner's Guide to Electronics.The step-by-step approach makes this book ideal for introductory courses such as the Intermediate GNVQ.

  14. Understanding users

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johannsen, Carl Gustav Viggo

    2014-01-01

    Segmentation of users can help libraries in the process of understanding user similarities and differences. Segmentation can also form the basis for selecting segments of target users and for developing tailored services for specific target segments. Several approaches and techniques have been...... segmentation project using computer-generated clusters. Compared to traditional marketing texts, this article also tries to identify user segments or images or metaphors by the library profession itself....

  15. Understanding unemployment

    OpenAIRE

    Guillaume Rocheteau

    2006-01-01

    Modern economists have built models of the labor market, which isolate the market’s key drivers and describe the way these interact to produce particular levels of unemployment. One of the most popular models used by macroeconomists today is the search-matching model of equilibrium unemployment. We explain this model, and show how it can be applied to understand the way various policies, such as unemployment benefits, taxes, or technological changes, can affect the unemployment rate.

  16. Understanding Technology?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Bendtsen

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available We are facing radical changes in our ways of living in the nearest future. Not necessarily of our own choice, but because tchnological development is moving so fast, that it will have still greater impact on many aspects of our lives. We have seen the beginnings of that change within the latest 35 years or so, but according to newest research that change will speed up immensely in the nearest years to come. The impact of that change or these changes will affect our working life immensely as a consequence of automation. How these changes are brought about and which are their consequences in a broad sense is being attempted to be understood and guessed by researchers. No one knows for sure, but specific patterns are visible. This paper will not try to guess, what will come, but will rather try to understand the deepest ”nature” of technology in order to understand the driving factors in this development: the genesis of technology in a broad sense in order to contibute to the understanding of the basis for the expected development.

  17. Microgravity Fluids for Biology, Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, DeVon; Kohl, Fred; Massa, Gioia D.; Motil, Brian; Parsons-Wingerter, Patricia; Quincy, Charles; Sato, Kevin; Singh, Bhim; Smith, Jeffrey D.; Wheeler, Raymond M.

    2013-01-01

    Microgravity Fluids for Biology represents an intersection of biology and fluid physics that present exciting research challenges to the Space Life and Physical Sciences Division. Solving and managing the transport processes and fluid mechanics in physiological and biological systems and processes are essential for future space exploration and colonization of space by humans. Adequate understanding of the underlying fluid physics and transport mechanisms will provide new, necessary insights and technologies for analyzing and designing biological systems critical to NASAs mission. To enable this mission, the fluid physics discipline needs to work to enhance the understanding of the influence of gravity on the scales and types of fluids (i.e., non-Newtonian) important to biology and life sciences. In turn, biomimetic, bio-inspired and synthetic biology applications based on physiology and biology can enrich the fluid mechanics and transport phenomena capabilities of the microgravity fluid physics community.

  18. Understanding uncertainty

    CERN Document Server

    Lindley, Dennis V

    2013-01-01

    Praise for the First Edition ""...a reference for everyone who is interested in knowing and handling uncertainty.""-Journal of Applied Statistics The critically acclaimed First Edition of Understanding Uncertainty provided a study of uncertainty addressed to scholars in all fields, showing that uncertainty could be measured by probability, and that probability obeyed three basic rules that enabled uncertainty to be handled sensibly in everyday life. These ideas were extended to embrace the scientific method and to show how decisions, containing an uncertain element, could be rationally made.

  19. Systems biology approach to bioremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chakraborty, Romy; Wu, Cindy H.; Hazen, Terry C.

    2012-06-01

    Bioremediation has historically been approached as a ‘black box’ in terms of our fundamental understanding. Thus it succeeds and fails, seldom without a complete understanding of why. Systems biology is an integrated research approach to study complex biological systems, by investigating interactions and networks at the molecular, cellular, community, and ecosystem level. The knowledge of these interactions within individual components is fundamental to understanding the dynamics of the ecosystem under investigation. Finally, understanding and modeling functional microbial community structure and stress responses in environments at all levels have tremendous implications for our fundamental understanding of hydrobiogeochemical processes and the potential for making bioremediation breakthroughs and illuminating the ‘black box’.

  20. Physics and biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frauenfelder, H.

    1988-01-01

    The author points out that the coupling between physics and biology is becoming closer as time goes on. He tries to show that physical studies on biological systems not only yield insight into biology but also provide results of interest to physics. Biological systems are extremly complex system. Ideally one would like to understand the behavior of such systems in terms of the behavior of its constituent atoms. Since in small organisms this may be 10 20 atoms, it is clear these are not simple many-body systems. He reviews the basic elements of cells and then considers the broader questions of structure, complexity, and function, which must be looked at on levels from the cell to the organism. Despite the vast amount of observational material already in existence, biophysics and biological physics are only at a beginning. We can expect that physics will continue to interact strongly with biology. Actually, the connection also includes chemistry and mathematics. New tools that become available in physics will continue to be applied to biological problems. We can expect that the flow of information will not be one way; biological systems will provide new information on many old and new parts of physics, from reaction theory and transport phenomena to complexity, cooperativity, and nonlinear processes

  1. Understanding analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Abbott, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    This lively introductory text exposes the student to the rewards of a rigorous study of functions of a real variable. In each chapter, informal discussions of questions that give analysis its inherent fascination are followed by precise, but not overly formal, developments of the techniques needed to make sense of them. By focusing on the unifying themes of approximation and the resolution of paradoxes that arise in the transition from the finite to the infinite, the text turns what could be a daunting cascade of definitions and theorems into a coherent and engaging progression of ideas. Acutely aware of the need for rigor, the student is much better prepared to understand what constitutes a proper mathematical proof and how to write one. Fifteen years of classroom experience with the first edition of Understanding Analysis have solidified and refined the central narrative of the second edition. Roughly 150 new exercises join a selection of the best exercises from the first edition, and three more project-sty...

  2. Understanding ayurveda.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadgil, Vaidya Dilip

    2010-01-01

    Ayurveda needs to achieve its full potential both in India and globally. This requires imparting to its students full appreciation of Ayurveda's power and strength, particularly proper understanding of the advantages of applying it to treat chronic and acute diseases. To this end, we explain the necessity of learning Sanskrit as a medium of study, and the advantages of learning the Texts in the traditional way, rather than relying on translations with all the loss of meaning and precision, which that entails. We emphasize the use of Triskandhakosha as a means to fully understand Ayurveda fundamental concepts and technical terms, so that all their shades of meaning are fully understood, and all their usages given in different places in the texts. Only by such methods can full appreciation of Ayurvedic wisdom be achieved, and the full depth and power of its knowledge be applied. Only then will its true status among systems of medicine come to be appreciated, either in India or more widely in the world as a whole.

  3. Understanding Ayurveda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vaidya Dilip Gadgil

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Ayurveda needs to achieve its full potential both in India and globally. This requires imparting to its students full appreciation of Ayurveda′s power and strength, particularly proper understanding of the advantages of applying it to treat chronic and acute diseases. To this end, we explain the necessity of learning Sanskrit as a medium of study, and the advantages of learning the Texts in the traditional way, rather than relying on translations with all the loss of meaning and precision, which that entails. We emphasize the use of Triskandhakosha as a means to fully understand Ayurveda fundamental concepts and technical terms, so that all their shades of meaning are fully understood, and all their usages given in different places in the texts. Only by such methods can full appreciation of Ayurvedic wisdom be achieved, and the full depth and power of its knowledge be applied. Only then will its true status among systems of medicine come to be appreciated, either in India or more widely in the world as a whole.

  4. Building biological foundries for next-generation synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chao, Ran; Yuan, YongBo; Zhao, HuiMin

    2015-07-01

    Synthetic biology is an interdisciplinary field that takes top-down approaches to understand and engineer biological systems through design-build-test cycles. A number of advances in this relatively young field have greatly accelerated such engineering cycles. Specifically, various innovative tools were developed for in silico biosystems design, DNA de novo synthesis and assembly, construct verification, as well as metabolite analysis, which have laid a solid foundation for building biological foundries for rapid prototyping of improved or novel biosystems. This review summarizes the state-of-the-art technologies for synthetic biology and discusses the challenges to establish such biological foundries.

  5. 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

    OpenAIRE

    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 aspect...

  6. Understanding physics

    CERN Document Server

    Cassidy, David; Rutherford, James

    2002-01-01

    Understanding Physics provides a thorough grounding in contemporary physics while placing physics into its social and historical context Based in large part on the highly respected Project Physics Course developed by two of the authors, it also integrates the results of recent pedagogical research The text thus - teaches about the basic phenomena in the physical world and the concepts developed to explain them - shows that science is a rational human endeavor with a long and continuing tradition, involving many different cultures and people - develops facility in critical thinking, reasoned argumentation, evaluation of evidence, mathematical modeling, and ethical values The treatment emphasizes not only what we know but also how we know it, why we believe it, and what effects that knowledge has - Why do we believe the Earth and planets revolve around the Sun? - Why do we believe that matter is made of atoms? - How do relativity theory and quantum mechanics alter our conception of Nature and in what ways do th...

  7. Systems Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiley, H S.

    2006-06-01

    The biology revolution over the last 50 years has been driven by the ascendancy of molecular biology. This was enthusiastically embraced by most biologists because it took us into increasingly familiar territory. It took mysterious processes, such as the replication of genetic material and assigned them parts that could be readily understood by the human mind. When we think of ''molecular machines'' as being the underlying basis of life, we are using a paradigm derived from everyday experience. However, the price that we paid was a relentless drive towards reductionism and the attendant balkanization of biology. Now along comes ''systems biology'' that promises us a solution to the problem of ''knowing more and more about less and less''. Unlike molecular biology, systems biology appears to be taking us into unfamiliar intellectual territory, such as statistics, mathematics and computer modeling. Not surprisingly, systems biology has met with widespread skepticism and resistance. Why do we need systems biology anyway and how does this new area of research promise to change the face of biology in the next couple of decades?

  8. Biological therapeutics

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Greenstein, Ben; Brook, Daniel A

    2011-01-01

    This introductory textbook covers all the main categories of biological medicines, including vaccines, hormonal preparations, drugs for rheumatoid arthritis and other connective tissue diseases, drugs...

  9. The production of understanding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Link, Bruce G

    2003-12-01

    While there is little doubt that sociological theory and research has had an important impact on the way people think about health and health care, mental health and medical sociologists are often confronted with challenges concerning the utility of the work that they do. Among the doubters are deans, funding agencies and family members. We are challenged by the ascendency of biological interpretations of human behaviors, by the incompatibility between the contextual view we prefer and the very strong individualistic orientation of our culture, and by the fact that we do not have an applied arm that trains the professionals who treat health and mental-health conditions. How do we respond to this challenge? The title of this paper gives a short answer: "The Production of Understanding." I propose that a powerful but under-recognized value of our work is the generation of explanations about health and mental health matters that help people understand the other side of an "us"/"them" divide. We produce understanding in a context in which misunderstanding is regularly constructed by powerful people who offer victim-blaming explanations for the circumstances experienced by people with less power. The production of understanding serves as an important counterbalance to this tendency. Our work shapes the way people think about problems related to health and mental health, limits the power of inaccurate victim-blaming accounts and provides understanding about why health and mental health are mal-distributed among people from different social circumstances.

  10. Synthetic Biology in Health and Disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Passel, van M.W.J.; Lam, C.M.C.; Martins dos Santos, V.A.P.; Suarez Diez, M.

    2014-01-01

    Synthetic biology draws on the understanding from genetics, biology, chemistry, physics, engineering, and computational sciences to (re-)design and (re-)engineer biological functions. Here we address how synthetic biology can be possibly deployed to promote health and tackle disease. We discuss how

  11. Tree biology and dendrochemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kevin T. Smith; Walter C. Shortle

    1996-01-01

    Dendrochemistry, the interpretation of elemental analysis of dated tree rings, can provide a temporal record of environmental change. Using the dendrochemical record requires an understanding of tree biology. In this review, we pose four questions concerning assumptions that underlie recent dendrochemical research: 1) Does the chemical composition of the wood directly...

  12. Multiscale Biological Materials

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frølich, Simon

    materials are characterized by their hierarchical and composite design, where features with sizes ranging from nanometers to centimeters provide the basis for the functionality of the material. Understanding of biological materials is, while very interesting from a basic research perspective, also valuable...... as inspiration for the development of new materials for medical and technological applications. In order to successfully mimic biological materials we must first have a thorough understanding of their design. As such, the purpose of the characterization of biological materials can be defined as the establishment...... mineral and the organic matrix in biomineralized calcite. High resolution powder diffraction was used to study how calcite in chalk, coccoliths, and mollusk shell is affected by the co-existent organic matrix. The calcified attachment organ in the saddle oyster, Anomia simplex serves as a brilliant...

  13. Standardization in synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Kristian M; Arndt, Katja M

    2012-01-01

    Synthetic Biology is founded on the idea that complex biological systems are built most effectively when the task is divided in abstracted layers and all required components are readily available and well-described. This requires interdisciplinary collaboration at several levels and a common understanding of the functioning of each component. Standardization of the physical composition and the description of each part is required as well as a controlled vocabulary to aid design and ensure interoperability. Here, we describe standardization initiatives from several disciplines, which can contribute to Synthetic Biology. We provide examples of the concerted standardization efforts of the BioBricks Foundation comprising the request for comments (RFC) and the Registry of Standardized Biological parts as well as the international Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) competition.

  14. Nutritional Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kasper

    and network biology has the potential to increase our understanding of how small molecules affect metabolic pathways and homeostasis, how this perturbation changes at the disease state, and to what extent individual genotypes contribute to this. A fruitful strategy in approaching and exploring the field...... biology research. The paper also shows as a proof-of-concept that a systems biology approach to diet is meaningful and demonstrates some basic principles on how to work with diet systematic. The second chapter of this thesis we developed the resource NutriChem v1.0. A foodchemical database linking...... sites of diet on the disease pathway. We propose a framework for interrogating the critical targets in colon cancer process and identifying plant-based dietary interventions as important modifiers using a systems chemical biology approach. The fifth chapter of the thesis is on discovering of novel anti...

  15. Mesoscopic biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. In this paper we present a qualitative outlook of mesoscopic biology where the typical length scale is of the order of nanometers and the energy scales comparable to thermal energy. ... National Center for Biological Sciences, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, UAS-GKVK Campus, Bangalore 560 065, India ...

  16. Computational biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartmann, Lars Røeboe; Jones, Neil; Simonsen, Jakob Grue

    2011-01-01

    Computation via biological devices has been the subject of close scrutiny since von Neumann’s early work some 60 years ago. In spite of the many relevant works in this field, the notion of programming biological devices seems to be, at best, ill-defined. While many devices are claimed or proved t...

  17. Mesoscopic biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this paper we present a qualitative outlook of mesoscopic biology where the typical length scale is of the order of nanometers and the energy scales comparable to thermal energy. Novel biomolecular machines, governed by coded information at the level of DNA and proteins, operate at these length scales in biological ...

  18. Integration of robotics and neuroscience beyond the hand: What kind of synergies?. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    d'Avella, Andrea

    2016-07-01

    Santello et al. [1] review an impressive amount of work on the control of biological and artificial hands that demonstrates how the concept of synergies can lead to a successful integration of robotics and neuroscience. Is it possible to generalize the same approach to the control of biological and artificial limbs and bodies beyond the hand? The human hand synergies that appear most relevant for robotic hands are those defined at the kinematic level, i.e. postural synergies [2]. Postural synergies capture the geometric relations among the many joints of the hand and allow for a low dimensional characterization and synthesis of the static hand postures involved in grasping and manipulating a large set of objects. However, many other complex motor skills such as walking, reaching, throwing, and catching require controlling multi-articular time-varying trajectories rather than static postures. Dynamic control of biological and artificial limbs and bodies, especially when geometric and inertial parameters are uncertain and the joints are compliant, poses great challenges. What kind of synergies might simplify the dynamic control of motor skills involving upper and lower limbs as well as the whole body?

  19. Scientific Drilling at Lake Tanganyika, Africa: A Transformative Record for Understanding Evolution in Isolation and the Biological History of the African Continent, University of Basel, 6-8 June 2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Andrew S.; Salzburger, Walter

    2017-05-01

    We report on the outcomes of a workshop held to discuss evolutionary biology, paleobiology and paleoecology questions that could be addressed by a scientific drilling project at Lake Tanganyika, the largest, deepest and oldest of the African Rift Valley lakes. Lake Tanganyika is of special significance to evolutionary biologists as it harbors one of the most spectacular endemic faunas of any lake on earth, with hundreds of unique species of fish, molluscs, crustaceans and other organisms that have evolved over the lake's long history. Most of these groups of organisms are known from fossils in short cores from the lake, raising the possibility that both body fossil and ancient DNA records might be recovered from long drill cores. The lake's sedimentary record could also provide a record of African terrestrial ecosystem history since the late Miocene. This 3-day workshop brought together biological and geological specialists on the lake and its surroundings to prioritize paleobiological, ecological and microbiological objectives that could ultimately be incorporated into an overall drilling plan for Lake Tanganyika and to consider how biological objectives can effectively be integrated into the paleoclimate and tectonics objectives of a Lake Tanganyika drilling project already considered in prior workshops.

  20. Understanding PISA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen DOWNES

    2005-04-01

    Full Text Available Understanding PISA Stephen DOWNESMoncton, CANADA ABSTRACT The headline was dramatic enough to cause a ripple in the reading public. "Students who use computers a lot at school have worse maths and reading performance," noted the BBC news article, citing a 2004 study by Ludger Woessmann and Thomas Fuchs (Fuchs and Woessman, 2004. It was not long before the blogosphere took notice. Taking the theme and running with it, Alice and Bill ask, "Computers Make School Kids Dumber?" They theorize, "If you track the admitted decline of education, you'll probably notice that it follows along with the increase of technology in the classroom." In a similar vein, James Bartholomew asks, "Do you think that the government will turn down the volume of its boasting about how it has spent billions introducing computers in schools (while keeping down the pay of teachers so much that there are shortages? Do you think it will stop sending governors of state schools glossy pamphlets about insisting that computers are used in their schools as much as possible?" In this study, therefore, PISA looks well beyond educational attainment, and also includes school demographics, such as whether it is a public or private school, has large or small classes, or has access or not to technological resources. Finally, it does measure student information-their family background, access to books and computers and parental support as well. The PISA survey departs from previous surveys in disregarding the stated curricula of the schools being measured. Therefore, the conclusion is not surprising, nor even wrong for him to consider independently of any parental or teacher support, considered without reference to the software running on it, considered without reference to student attitudes and interests, does not positively impact an education. Finally, he focus on missing the reporting of results

  1. Tumor Biology and Microenvironment Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Part of NCI's Division of Cancer Biology's research portfolio, research in this area seeks to understand the role of tumor cells and the tumor microenvironment (TME) in driving cancer initiation, progression, maintenance and recurrence.

  2. Quantum Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Sergi

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available A critical assessment of the recent developmentsof molecular biology is presented.The thesis that they do not lead to a conceptualunderstanding of life and biological systems is defended.Maturana and Varela's concept of autopoiesis is briefly sketchedand its logical circularity avoided by postulatingthe existence of underlying living processes,entailing amplification from the microscopic to the macroscopic scale,with increasing complexity in the passage from one scale to the other.Following such a line of thought, the currently accepted model of condensed matter, which is based on electrostatics and short-ranged forces,is criticized. It is suggested that the correct interpretationof quantum dispersion forces (van der Waals, hydrogen bonding, and so onas quantum coherence effects hints at the necessity of includinglong-ranged forces (or mechanisms for them incondensed matter theories of biological processes.Some quantum effects in biology are reviewedand quantum mechanics is acknowledged as conceptually important to biology since withoutit most (if not all of the biological structuresand signalling processes would not even exist. Moreover, it is suggested that long-rangequantum coherent dynamics, including electron polarization,may be invoked to explain signal amplificationprocess in biological systems in general.

  3. Biological Oceanography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyhrman, Sonya

    2004-10-01

    The ocean is arguably the largest habitat on the planet, and it houses an astounding array of life, from microbes to whales. As a testament to this diversity and its importance, the discipline of biological oceanography spans studies of all levels of biological organization, from that of single genes, to organisms, to their population dynamics. Biological oceanography also includes studies on how organisms interact with, and contribute to, essential global processes. Students of biological oceanography are often as comfortable looking at satellite images as they are electron micrographs. This diversity of perspective begins the textbook Biological Oceanography, with cover graphics including a Coastal Zone Color Scanner image representing chlorophyll concentration, an electron micrograph of a dinoflagellate, and a photograph of a copepod. These images instantly capture the reader's attention and illustrate some of the different scales on which budding oceanographers are required to think. Having taught a core graduate course in biological oceanography for many years, Charlie Miller has used his lecture notes as the genesis for this book. The text covers the subject of biological oceanography in a manner that is targeted to introductory graduate students, but it would also be appropriate for advanced undergraduates.

  4. An Integrated Approach to Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    An Integrated Approach to Biology. Aniket Bhattacharya. Keywords. Zoology, genomics, schistoso- miasis, schistosome genomics, praziquantel, origin of clothing. Zoology, being a basic bioscience, is essential for a better understanding of applied biological disciplines. A sound back- ground in zoology can often be the key ...

  5. Static Analysis for Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielson, Flemming; Nielson, Hanne Riis; Rosa, D. Schuch da

    2004-01-01

    This paper shows how static analysis techniques can help understanding biological systems. Based on a simple example we illustrate the outcome of performing three different analyses extracting information of increasing precision. We conclude by reporting on the potential impact and exploitation o...... of these techniques in systems biology....

  6. Towards a synergy framework across neuroscience and robotics: Lessons learned and open questions. Reply to comments on: "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; Jorntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M. L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Schaeffer, Alin Abu; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    We would like to thank all commentators for their insightful commentaries. Thanks to their diverse and complementary expertise in neuroscience and robotics, the commentators have provided us with the opportunity to further discuss state-of-the-art and gaps in the integration of neuroscience and robotics reviewed in our article. We organized our reply in two sections that capture the main points of all commentaries [1-9]: (1) Advantages and limitations of the synergy approach in neuroscience and robotics, and (2) Learning and role of sensory feedback in biological and robotics synergies.

  7. Are we ready to move beyond the reductionist approach of classical synergy control?. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by Marco Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacquaniti, Francesco; Ivanenko, Yuri P.; Zago, Myrka

    2016-07-01

    Starting from the classical concepts introduced by Sherrington [1] and considerably elaborated by Bernstein [2], much has been learned about motor synergies in the last several years. The contributions of the group funded by the European project ;The Hand Embodied; are remarkable in the field of biological and robotic control of the hand based on synergies, and they are reflected in this enjoyable review [3]. There, Santello et al. adopt Bernstein's definition of motor synergies as multiple elements working together towards a common goal, with the result that multiple degrees of freedom are controlled within a lower-dimensional space than the available number of dimensions.

  8. Using the Biodatamation(TM) strategy to learn introductory college biology: Value-added effects on selected students' conceptual understanding and conceptual integration of the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reuter, Jewel Jurovich

    The purpose of this exploratory research was to study how students learn photosynthesis and cellular respiration and to determine the value added to the student's learning by each of the three technology-scaffolded learning strategy components (animated concept presentations and WebQuest-style activities, data collection, and student-constructed animations) of the BioDatamation(TM) (BDM) Program. BDM learning strategies utilized the Theory of Interacting Visual Fields(TM) (TIVF) (Reuter & Wandersee, 2002a, 2002b; 2003a, 2003b) which holds that meaningful knowledge is hierarchically constructed using the past, present, and future visual fields, with visual metacognitive components that are derived from the principles of Visual Behavior (Jones, 1995), Human Constructivist Theory (Mintzes & Wandersee, 1998a), and Visual Information Design Theory (Tufte, 1990, 1997, 2001). Student alternative conceptions of photosynthesis and cellular respiration were determined by the item analysis of 263,267 Biology Advanced Placement Examinations and were used to develop the BDM instructional strategy and interview questions. The subjects were 24 undergraduate students of high and low biology prior knowledge enrolled in an introductory-level General Biology course at a major research university in the Deep South. Fifteen participants received BDM instruction which included original and innovative learning materials and laboratories in 6 phases; 8 of the 15 participants were the subject of in depth, extended individual analysis. The other 9 participants received traditional, non-BDM instruction. Interviews which included participants' creation of concept maps and visual field diagrams were conducted after each phase. Various content analyses, including Chi's Verbal Analysis and quantitizing/qualitizing were used for data analysis. The total value added to integrative knowledge during BDM instruction with the three visual fields was an average increase of 56% for cellular respiration

  9. 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.

  10. Biological Pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skip to main content Biological Pathways Fact Sheet Enter Search Term(s): Español Research Funding An Overview Bioinformatics Current Grants Education and Training Funding Extramural Research News Features ...

  11. 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.

  12. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George

    2003-01-01

    To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive therapy. Methods: 1...

  13. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George L

    2004-01-01

    To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive therapy. Methods: 1...

  14. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George L

    2006-01-01

    To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive (OC) therapy. 1...

  15. The Physics behind Systems Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radde Nicole E.

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Systems Biology is a young and rapidly evolving research field, which combines experimental techniques and mathematical modeling in order to achieve a mechanistic understanding of processes underlying the regulation and evolution of living systems. Systems Biology is often associated with an Engineering approach: The purpose is to formulate a data-rich, detailed simulation model that allows to perform numerical (‘in silico’ experiments and then draw conclusions about the biological system. While methods from Engineering may be an appropriate approach to extending the scope of biological investigations to experimentally inaccessible realms and to supporting data-rich experimental work, it may not be the best strategy in a search for design principles of biological systems and the fundamental laws underlying Biology. Physics has a long tradition of characterizing and understanding emergent collective behaviors in systems of interacting units and searching for universal laws. Therefore, it is natural that many concepts used in Systems Biology have their roots in Physics. With an emphasis on Theoretical Physics, we will here review the ‘Physics core’ of Systems Biology, show how some success stories in Systems Biology can be traced back to concepts developed in Physics, and discuss how Systems Biology can further benefit from its Theoretical Physics foundation.

  16. Chemical reporters for biological discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grammel, Markus; Hang, Howard C

    2013-08-01

    Functional tools are needed to understand complex biological systems. Here we review how chemical reporters in conjunction with bioorthogonal labeling methods can be used to image and retrieve nucleic acids, proteins, glycans, lipids and other metabolites in vitro, in cells as well as in whole organisms. By tagging these biomolecules, researchers can now monitor their dynamics in living systems and discover specific substrates of cellular pathways. These advances in chemical biology are thus providing important tools to characterize biological pathways and are poised to facilitate our understanding of human diseases.

  17. Integrating Functional, Developmental and Evolutionary Biology into Biology Curricula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haave, Neil

    2012-01-01

    A complete understanding of life involves how organisms are able to function in their environment and how they arise. Understanding how organisms arise involves both their evolution and development. Thus to completely comprehend living things, biology must study their function, development and evolution. Previous proposals for standardized…

  18. Finding Hope in Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takala, Tuija

    2017-04-01

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

  19. Quantum biology of the retina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sia, Paul Ikgan; Luiten, André N; Stace, Thomas M; Wood, John Pm; Casson, Robert J

    2014-08-01

    The emerging field of quantum biology has led to a greater understanding of biological processes at the microscopic level. There is recent evidence to suggest that non-trivial quantum features such as entanglement, tunnelling and coherence have evolved in living systems. These quantum features are particularly evident in supersensitive light-harvesting systems such as in photosynthesis and photoreceptors. A biomimetic strategy utilizing biological quantum phenomena might allow new advances in the field of quantum engineering, particularly in quantum information systems. In addition, a better understanding of quantum biological features may lead to novel medical diagnostic and therapeutic developments. In the present review, we discuss the role of quantum physics in biological systems with an emphasis on the retina. © 2014 Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists.

  20. Biological Soft Robotics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feinberg, Adam W

    2015-01-01

    In nature, nanometer-scale molecular motors are used to generate force within cells for diverse processes from transcription and transport to muscle contraction. This adaptability and scalability across wide temporal, spatial, and force regimes have spurred the development of biological soft robotic systems that seek to mimic and extend these capabilities. This review describes how molecular motors are hierarchically organized into larger-scale structures in order to provide a basic understanding of how these systems work in nature and the complexity and functionality we hope to replicate in biological soft robotics. These span the subcellular scale to macroscale, and this article focuses on the integration of biological components with synthetic materials, coupled with bioinspired robotic design. Key examples include nanoscale molecular motor-powered actuators, microscale bacteria-controlled devices, and macroscale muscle-powered robots that grasp, walk, and swim. Finally, the current challenges and future opportunities in the field are addressed.

  1. Biological preconcentrator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manginell, Ronald P [Albuquerque, NM; Bunker, Bruce C [Albuquerque, NM; Huber, Dale L [Albuquerque, NM

    2008-09-09

    A biological preconcentrator comprises a stimulus-responsive active film on a stimulus-producing microfabricated platform. The active film can comprise a thermally switchable polymer film that can be used to selectively absorb and desorb proteins from a protein mixture. The biological microfabricated platform can comprise a thin membrane suspended on a substrate with an integral resistive heater and/or thermoelectric cooler for thermal switching of the active polymer film disposed on the membrane. The active polymer film can comprise hydrogel-like polymers, such as poly(ethylene oxide) or poly(n-isopropylacrylamide), that are tethered to the membrane. The biological preconcentrator can be fabricated with semiconductor materials and technologies.

  2. Digital biology and chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witters, Daan; Sun, Bing; Begolo, Stefano; Rodriguez-Manzano, Jesus; Robles, Whitney; Ismagilov, Rustem F

    2014-09-07

    This account examines developments in "digital" biology and chemistry within the context of microfluidics, from a personal perspective. Using microfluidics as a frame of reference, we identify two areas of research within digital biology and chemistry that are of special interest: (i) the study of systems that switch between discrete states in response to changes in chemical concentration of signals, and (ii) the study of single biological entities such as molecules or cells. In particular, microfluidics accelerates analysis of switching systems (i.e., those that exhibit a sharp change in output over a narrow range of input) by enabling monitoring of multiple reactions in parallel over a range of concentrations of signals. Conversely, such switching systems can be used to create new kinds of microfluidic detection systems that provide "analog-to-digital" signal conversion and logic. Microfluidic compartmentalization technologies for studying and isolating single entities can be used to reconstruct and understand cellular processes, study interactions between single biological entities, and examine the intrinsic heterogeneity of populations of molecules, cells, or organisms. Furthermore, compartmentalization of single cells or molecules in "digital" microfluidic experiments can induce switching in a range of reaction systems to enable sensitive detection of cells or biomolecules, such as with digital ELISA or digital PCR. This "digitizing" offers advantages in terms of robustness, assay design, and simplicity because quantitative information can be obtained with qualitative measurements. While digital formats have been shown to improve the robustness of existing chemistries, we anticipate that in the future they will enable new chemistries to be used for quantitative measurements, and that digital biology and chemistry will continue to provide further opportunities for measuring biomolecules, understanding natural systems more deeply, and advancing molecular and

  3. Biologics for tendon repair☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Docheva, Denitsa; Müller, Sebastian A.; Majewski, Martin; Evans, Christopher H.

    2015-01-01

    Tendon injuries are common and present a clinical challenge to orthopedic surgery mainly because these injuries often respond poorly to treatment and require prolonged rehabilitation. Therapeutic options used to repair ruptured tendons have consisted of suture, autografts, allografts, and synthetic prostheses. To date, none of these alternatives has provided a successful long-term solution, and often the restored tendons do not recover their complete strength and functionality. Unfortunately, our understanding of tendon biology lags far behind that of other musculoskeletal tissues, thus impeding the development of new treatment options for tendon conditions. Hence, in this review, after introducing the clinical significance of tendon diseases and the present understanding of tendon biology, we describe and critically assess the current strategies for enhancing tendon repair by biological means. These consist mainly of applying growth factors, stem cells, natural biomaterials and genes, alone or in combination, to the site of tendon damage. A deeper understanding of how tendon tissue and cells operate, combined with practical applications of modern molecular and cellular tools could provide the long awaited breakthrough in designing effective tendon-specific therapeutics and overall improvement of tendon disease management. PMID:25446135

  4. Marine Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewees, Christopher M.; Hooper, Jon K.

    1976-01-01

    A variety of informational material for a course in marine biology or oceanology at the secondary level is presented. Among the topics discussed are: food webs and pyramids, planktonic blooms, marine life, plankton nets, food chains, phytoplankton, zooplankton, larval plankton and filter feeders. (BT)

  5. Mesoscopic biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. In this paper we present a qualitative outlook of mesoscopic biology where the typical length scale is of the order of nanometers and the energy scales comparable to thermal energy. Novel biomolecular machines, governed by coded information at the level of DNA and proteins, operate at these length scales in ...

  6. Scaffolded biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minelli, Alessandro

    2016-09-01

    Descriptions and interpretations of the natural world are dominated by dichotomies such as organism vs. environment, nature vs. nurture, genetic vs. epigenetic, but in the last couple of decades strong dissatisfaction with those partitions has been repeatedly voiced and a number of alternative perspectives have been suggested, from perspectives such as Dawkins' extended phenotype, Turner's extended organism, Oyama's Developmental Systems Theory and Odling-Smee's niche construction theory. Last in time is the description of biological phenomena in terms of hybrids between an organism (scaffolded system) and a living or non-living scaffold, forming unit systems to study processes such as reproduction and development. As scaffold, eventually, we can define any resource used by the biological system, especially in development and reproduction, without incorporating it as happens in the case of resources fueling metabolism. Addressing biological systems as functionally scaffolded systems may help pointing to functional relationships that can impart temporal marking to the developmental process and thus explain its irreversibility; revisiting the boundary between development and metabolism and also regeneration phenomena, by suggesting a conceptual framework within which to investigate phenomena of regular hypermorphic regeneration such as characteristic of deer antlers; fixing a periodization of development in terms of the times at which a scaffolding relationship begins or is terminated; and promoting plant galls to legitimate study objects of developmental biology.

  7. Biological digestion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosevear, A.

    1988-01-01

    This paper discusses the biological degradation of non-radioactive organic material occurring in radioactive wastes. The biochemical steps are often performed using microbes or isolated enzymes in combination with chemical steps and the aim is to oxidise the carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen and sulphur to their respective oxides. (U.K.)

  8. Biology Notes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    School Science Review, 1981

    1981-01-01

    Outlines a variety of laboratory procedures, techniques, and materials including construction of a survey frame for field biology, a simple tidal system, isolation and applications of plant protoplasts, tropisms, teaching lung structure, and a key to statistical methods for biologists. (DS)

  9. Quantum Mechanics predicts evolutionary biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torday, J S

    2018-01-11

    Nowhere are the shortcomings of conventional descriptive biology more evident than in the literature on Quantum Biology. In the on-going effort to apply Quantum Mechanics to evolutionary biology, merging Quantum Mechanics with the fundamentals of evolution as the First Principles of Physiology-namely negentropy, chemiosmosis and homeostasis-offers an authentic opportunity to understand how and why physics constitutes the basic principles of biology. Negentropy and chemiosmosis confer determinism on the unicell, whereas homeostasis constitutes Free Will because it offers a probabilistic range of physiologic set points. Similarly, on this basis several principles of Quantum Mechanics also apply directly to biology. The Pauli Exclusion Principle is both deterministic and probabilistic, whereas non-localization and the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle are both probabilistic, providing the long-sought after ontologic and causal continuum from physics to biology and evolution as the holistic integration recognized as consciousness for the first time. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  10. Quantum Effects in Biological Systems

    CERN Document Server

    2016-01-01

    Since the last decade the study of quantum mechanical phenomena in biological systems has become a vibrant field of research. Initially sparked by evidence of quantum effects in energy transport that is instrumental for photosynthesis, quantum biology asks the question of how methods and models from quantum theory can help us to understand fundamental mechanisms in living organisms. This approach entails a paradigm change challenging the related disciplines: The successful framework of quantum theory is taken out of its low-temperature, microscopic regimes and applied to hot and dense macroscopic environments, thereby extending the toolbox of biology and biochemistry at the same time. The Quantum Effects in Biological Systems conference is a platform for researchers from biology, chemistry and physics to present and discuss the latest developments in the field of quantum biology. After meetings in Lisbon (2009), Harvard (2010), Ulm (2011), Berkeley (2012), Vienna (2013), Singapore (2014) and Florence (2015),...

  11. EDITORIAL: Physical Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roscoe, Jane

    2004-06-01

    Physical Biology is a new peer-reviewed publication from Institute of Physics Publishing. Launched in 2004, the journal will foster the integration of biology with the traditionally more quantitative fields of physics, chemistry, computer science and other math-based disciplines. Its primary aim is to further the understanding of biological systems at all levels of complexity, ranging from the role of structure and dynamics of a single molecule to cellular networks and organisms. The journal encourages the development of a new biology-driven physics based on the extraordinary and increasingly rich data arising in biology, and provides research directions for those involved in the creation of novel bio-engineered systems. Physical Biology will publish a stimulating combination of full length research articles, communications, perspectives, reviews and tutorials from a wide range of disciplines covering topics such as: Single-molecule studies and nanobiotechnology Molecular interactions and protein folding Charge transfer and photobiology Ion channels; structure, function and ion regulation Molecular motors and force generation Subcellular processes Biological networks and neural systems Modeling aspects of molecular and cell biology Cell-cell signaling and interaction Biological patterns and development Evolutionary processes Novel tools and methods in physical biology Experts in the areas encompassed by the journal's scope have been appointed to the Editorial Scientific Committee and the composition of the Committee will be updated regularly to reflect the developments in this new and exciting field. Physical Biology is free online to everyone in 2004; you are invited to take advantage of this offer by visiting the journal homepage at http://physbio.iop.org This special print edition of Physical Biology is a combination of issues 1 and 2 of this electronic-only journal and it brings together an impressive range of articles in the fields covered, including a popular

  12. Biological process linkage networks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dikla Dotan-Cohen

    Full Text Available The traditional approach to studying complex biological networks is based on the identification of interactions between internal components of signaling or metabolic pathways. By comparison, little is known about interactions between higher order biological systems, such as biological pathways and processes. We propose a methodology for gleaning patterns of interactions between biological processes by analyzing protein-protein interactions, transcriptional co-expression and genetic interactions. At the heart of the methodology are the concept of Linked Processes and the resultant network of biological processes, the Process Linkage Network (PLN.We construct, catalogue, and analyze different types of PLNs derived from different data sources and different species. When applied to the Gene Ontology, many of the resulting links connect processes that are distant from each other in the hierarchy, even though the connection makes eminent sense biologically. Some others, however, carry an element of surprise and may reflect mechanisms that are unique to the organism under investigation. In this aspect our method complements the link structure between processes inherent in the Gene Ontology, which by its very nature is species-independent. As a practical application of the linkage of processes we demonstrate that it can be effectively used in protein function prediction, having the power to increase both the coverage and the accuracy of predictions, when carefully integrated into prediction methods.Our approach constitutes a promising new direction towards understanding the higher levels of organization of the cell as a system which should help current efforts to re-engineer ontologies and improve our ability to predict which proteins are involved in specific biological processes.

  13. The next step in biology: A periodic table?

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    PRAKASH KUMAR

    2007-08-06

    Aug 6, 2007 ... understand natural biology in its entirety (systems biology) and use it for designing new living systems (synthetic biology). Interestingly a constant concept in biology has always come rarely. Even the dogma that was considered central in biology has now morphed into a complex wiring of feedback loops.

  14. III. Cellular ultrastructures in situ as key to understanding tumor energy metabolism: biological significance of the Warburg effect [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/a0

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Halina Witkiewicz

    2013-01-01

    progression of cell cycle through mitosis, indicated that Warburg effect had a fundamental biological significance extending to non-malignant tissues. The approach used here could facilitate integration of accumulated cyber knowledge on cancer metabolism into predictive science.

  15. Mammalian Synthetic Biology: Engineering Biological Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Joshua B; Perez-Pinera, Pablo; Gersbach, Charles A

    2017-06-21

    The programming of new functions into mammalian cells has tremendous application in research and medicine. Continued improvements in the capacity to sequence and synthesize DNA have rapidly increased our understanding of mechanisms of gene function and regulation on a genome-wide scale and have expanded the set of genetic components available for programming cell biology. The invention of new research tools, including targetable DNA-binding systems such as CRISPR/Cas9 and sensor-actuator devices that can recognize and respond to diverse chemical, mechanical, and optical inputs, has enabled precise control of complex cellular behaviors at unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution. These tools have been critical for the expansion of synthetic biology techniques from prokaryotic and lower eukaryotic hosts to mammalian systems. Recent progress in the development of genome and epigenome editing tools and in the engineering of designer cells with programmable genetic circuits is expanding approaches to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease and to establish personalized theranostic strategies for next-generation medicines. This review summarizes the development of these enabling technologies and their application to transforming mammalian synthetic biology into a distinct field in research and medicine.

  16. Editorial overview : Systems biology for biotechnology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heinemann, Matthias; Pilpel, Yitzhak

    About 15 years ago, systems biology was introduced as a novel approach to biological research. On the one side, its introduction was a result of the recognition that through solely the reductionist approach, we would ulti- mately not be able to understand how biological systems function as a whole.

  17. Synthetic biology: an emerging engineering discipline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Allen A; Lu, Timothy K

    2012-01-01

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

  18. Fostering synergy between cell biology and systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eddy, James A; Funk, Cory C; Price, Nathan D

    2015-08-01

    In the shared pursuit of elucidating detailed mechanisms of cell function, systems biology presents a natural complement to ongoing efforts in cell biology. Systems biology aims to characterize biological systems through integrated and quantitative modeling of cellular information. The process of model building and analysis provides value through synthesizing and cataloging information about cells and molecules, predicting mechanisms and identifying generalizable themes, generating hypotheses and guiding experimental design, and highlighting knowledge gaps and refining understanding. In turn, incorporating domain expertise and experimental data is crucial for building towards whole cell models. An iterative cycle of interaction between cell and systems biologists advances the goals of both fields and establishes a framework for mechanistic understanding of the genome-to-phenome relationship. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Biological radioprotector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stefanescu, Ioan; Titescu, Gheorghe; Tamaian, Radu; Haulica, Ion; Bild, Walther

    2002-01-01

    According to the patent description, the biological radioprotector is deuterium depleted water, DDW, produced by vacuum distillation with an isotopic content lower than natural value. It appears as such or in a mixture with natural water and carbon dioxide. It can be used for preventing and reducing the ionizing radiation effects upon humans or animal organisms, exposed therapeutically, professionally or accidentally to radiation. The most significant advantage of using DDW as biological radioprotector results from its way of administration. Indeed no one of the radioprotectors currently used today can be orally administrated, what reduces the patients' compliance to prophylactic administrations. The biological radioprotector is an unnoxious product obtained from natural water, which can be administrated as food additive instead of drinking water. Dose modification factor is according to initial estimates around 1.9, what is a remarkable feature when one takes into account that the product is toxicity-free and side effect-free and can be administrated prophylactically as a food additive. A net radioprotective action of the deuterium depletion was evidenced experimentally in laboratory animals (rats) hydrated with DDW of 30 ppm D/(D+H) concentration as compared with normally hydrated control animals. Knowing the effects of irradiation and mechanisms of the acute radiation disease as well as the effects of administration of radiomimetic chemicals upon cellular lines of fast cell division, it appears that the effects of administrating DDW result from stimulation of the immunity system. In conclusion, the biological radioprotector DDW presents the following advantages: - it is obtained from natural products without toxicity; - it is easy to be administrated as a food additive, replacing the drinking water; - besides radioprotective effects, the product has also immunostimulative and antitumoral effects

  20. Crusts: biological

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belnap, Jayne; Elias, Scott A.

    2013-01-01

    Biological soil crusts, a community of cyanobacteria, lichens, mosses, and fungi, are an essential part of dryland ecosystems. They are critical in the stabilization of soils, protecting them from wind and water erosion. Similarly, these soil surface communities also stabilized soils on early Earth, allowing vascular plants to establish. They contribute nitrogen and carbon to otherwise relatively infertile dryland soils, and have a strong influence on hydrologic cycles. Their presence can also influence vascular plant establishment and nutrition.

  1. Marine biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thurman, H.V.; Webber, H.H.

    1984-01-01

    This book discusses both taxonomic and ecological topics on marine biology. Full coverage of marine organisms of all five kingdoms is provided, along with interesting and thorough discussion of all major marine habitats. Organization into six major parts allows flexibility. It also provides insight into important topics such as disposal of nuclear waste at sea, the idea that life began on the ocean floor, and how whales, krill, and people interact. A full-color photo chapter reviews questions, and exercises. The contents are: an overview marine biology: fundamental concepts/investigating life in the ocean; the physical ocean, the ocean floor, the nature of water, the nature and motion of ocean water; general ecology, conditions for life in the sea, biological productivity and energy transfer; marine organisms; monera, protista, mycota and metaphyta; the smaller marine animals, the large animals marine habitats, the intertidal zone/benthos of the continental shelf, the photic zone, the deep ocean, the ocean under stress, marine pollution, appendix a: the metric system and conversion factors/ appendix b: prefixes and suffixes/ appendix c: taxonomic classification of common marine organisms, and glossary, and index

  2. A biologia molecular contribuindo para a compreensão e a prevenção das doenças hereditárias Molecular biology contribution to the understanding and prevention of genetic disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayana Zatz

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available O fim do seqüenciamento do genoma humano levanta inúmeras questões: Como o projeto genoma humano vai influenciar nossas vidas? Como a medicina tem se beneficiado do estudo dos genes? Quais são as aplicações práticas imediatas e o que se espera para o futuro? Quais são as implicações éticas? Este capítulo ilustra como as doenças genéticas têm contribuído para a compreensão do genoma humano. Ajuda-nos a entender como nossos genes funcionam quando normais e por que causam doenças quando alterados. Do ponto de vista prático, o estudo dos genes tem permitido o diagnóstico molecular para um número crescente de patologias, o que é fundamental para evitar outros exames invasivos, identificar casais em risco, e prevenir o nascimento de novos afetados. Além disso, discute-se quais são as perspectivas futuras em relação ao tratamento destas e de outras patologias genéticas incluindo a clonagem para fins terapêuticos e a utilização de células-tronco. Finalmente aborda as implicações éticas relacionadas ao uso de testes genéticos. Os benefícios de cada teste, principalmente para doenças de início tardio para as quais ainda não há tratamento, têm que ser discutidos exaustivamente com os consulentes antes de sua aplicação.The sequencing of the human genome raised many questions such as: How the human genome project will influence our lives? How the medicine will benefit from the study of genes ? What are the application in practice and what can we expect from the future? What are the ethical implications? This chapter illustrates how genetic diseases, such as neuromuscular disorders are contributing to our understanding of the human genome. It helps us to start to understand how our genes work and why they cause diseases when mutated. One of the practical application of studying genes is the improvement of molecular diagnosis for a growing number of disorders which is of utmost importance to avoid other invasive exams

  3. Grasping versus knitting: A geometric perspective. Comment on "Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands" by M. Santello et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laumond, Jean-Paul

    2016-07-01

    Grasping an object is a matter of first moving a prehensile organ at some position in the world, and then managing the contact relationship between the prehensile organ and the object. Once the contact relationship has been established and made stable, the object is part of the body and it can move in the world. As any action, the action of grasping is ontologically anchored in the physical space while the correlative movement originates in the space of the body. Robots-as any living system-access the physical space only indirectly through sensors and motors. Sensors and motors constitute the space of the body where homeostasis takes place. Physical space and both sensor space and motor space constitute a triangulation, which is the locus of the action embodiment, i.e. the locus of operations allowing the fundamental inversion between world-centered and body-centered frames. Referring to these three fundamental spaces, geometry appears as the best abstraction to capture the nature of action-driven movements. Indeed, a particular geometry is captured by a particular group of transformations of the points of a space such that every point or every direction in space can be transformed by an element of the group to every other point or direction within the group. Quoting mathematician Poincaré, the issue is not find the truest geometry but the most practical one to account for the complexity of the world [1]. Geometry is then the language fostering the dialog between neurophysiology and engineering about natural and artificial movement science and technology. Evolution has found amazing solutions that allow organisms to rapidly and efficiently manage the relationship between their body and the world [2]. It is then natural that roboticists consider taking inspiration of these natural solutions, while contributing to better understand their origin.

  4. Compositional Modeling of Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Zámborszky, Judit

    2010-01-01

    Molecular interactions are wired in a fascinating way resulting in complex behavior of bio-logical systems. Theoretical modeling provides us a useful framework for understanding the dynamics and the function of such networks. The complexity of the biological systems calls for conceptual tools that manage the combinatorial explosion of the set of possible interac-tions. A suitable conceptual tool to attack complexity is compositionality, already success-fully used in the process algebra field ...

  5. Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Wu, Chia-Chou

    2013-01-01

    Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i) system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii) system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii) system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv) systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering. PMID:24709875

  6. Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bor-Sen Chen

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

  7. Systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Wu, Chia-Chou

    2013-10-11

    Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i) system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii) system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii) system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv) systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

  8. Ten questions about systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joyner, Michael J; Pedersen, Bente K

    2011-01-01

    In this paper we raise 'ten questions' broadly related to 'omics', the term systems biology, and why the new biology has failed to deliver major therapeutic advances for many common diseases, especially diabetes and cardiovascular disease. We argue that a fundamentally narrow and reductionist...... to understand how whole animals adapt to the real world. We argue that a lack of fluency in these concepts is a major stumbling block for what has been narrowly defined as 'systems biology' by some of its leading advocates. We also point out that it is a failure of regulation at multiple levels that causes many...

  9. Biological biomaterials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jorge-Herrero, E. [Servicio de Cirugia Experimental. Clinica Puerta de Hierro, Madrid (Spain)

    1997-05-01

    There are a number of situations in which substances of biological origin are employed as biomaterials. Most of them are macromolecules derived from isolated connective tissue or the connective tissue itself in membrane form, in both cases, the tissue can be used in its natural form or be chemically treated. In other cases, certain blood vessels can be chemically pretreated and used as vascular prostheses. Proteins such as albumin, collagen and fibrinogen are employed to coat vascular prostheses. Certain polysaccharides have also been tested for use in controlled drug release systems. Likewise, a number of tissues, such as dura mater, bovine pericardium, procine valves and human valves, are used in the preparation of cardiac prostheses. We also use veins from animals or humans in arterial replacement. In none of these cases are the tissues employed dissimilar to the native tissues as they have been chemically modified, becoming a new bio material with different physical and biochemical properties. In short, we find that natural products are being utilized as biomaterials and must be considered as such; thus, it is necessary to study both their chemicobiological and physicomechanical properties. In the present report, we review the current applications, problems and future prospects of some of these biological biomaterials. (Author) 84 refs.

  10. Shape understanding system machine understanding and human understanding

    CERN Document Server

    Les, Zbigniew

    2015-01-01

    This is the third book presenting selected results of research on the further development of the shape understanding system (SUS) carried out by authors in the newly founded Queen Jadwiga Research Institute of Understanding. In this book the new term Machine Understanding is introduced referring to a new area of research aiming to investigate the possibility of building machines with the ability to understand. It is presented that SUS needs to some extent mimic human understanding and for this reason machines are evaluated according to the rules applied for the evaluation of human understanding. The book shows how to formulate problems and how it can be tested if the machine is able to solve these problems.    

  11. Quantum physics meets biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arndt, Markus; Juffmann, Thomas; Vedral, Vlatko

    2009-12-01

    Quantum physics and biology have long been regarded as unrelated disciplines, describing nature at the inanimate microlevel on the one hand and living species on the other hand. Over the past decades the life sciences have succeeded in providing ever more and refined explanations of macroscopic phenomena that were based on an improved understanding of molecular structures and mechanisms. Simultaneously, quantum physics, originally rooted in a world-view of quantum coherences, entanglement, and other nonclassical effects, has been heading toward systems of increasing complexity. The present perspective article shall serve as a "pedestrian guide" to the growing interconnections between the two fields. We recapitulate the generic and sometimes unintuitive characteristics of quantum physics and point to a number of applications in the life sciences. We discuss our criteria for a future "quantum biology," its current status, recent experimental progress, and also the restrictions that nature imposes on bold extrapolations of quantum theory to macroscopic phenomena.

  12. Biological Correlates of Empathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Timucin Oral

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Empathy can be defined as the capacity to know emotionally what another is experiencing from within the frame of reference of that other person and the capacity to sample the feelings of another or it can be metaphorized as to put oneself in another’s shoes. Although the concept of empathy was firstly described in psychological theories, researches studying the biological correlates of psychological theories have been increasing recently. Not suprisingly, dinamically oriented psychotherapists Freud, Kohut, Basch and Fenichel had suggested theories about the biological correlates of empathy concept and established the basis of this modality decades ago. Some other theorists emphasized the importance of empathy in the early years of lifetime regarding mother-child attachment in terms of developmental psychology and investigated its role in explanation of psychopathology. The data coming from some of the recent brain imaging and animal model studies also seem to support these theories. Although increased activity in different brain regions was shown in many of the brain imaging studies, the role of cingulate cortex for understanding mother-child relationship was constantly emphasized in nearly all of the studies. In addition to these studies, a group of Italian scientists has defined a group of neurons as “mirror neurons” in their studies observing rhesus macaque monkeys. Later, they also defined mirror neurons in human studies, and suggested them as “empathy neurons”. After the discovery of mirror neurons, the hopes of finding the missing part of the puzzle for understanding the biological correlates of empathy raised again. Although the roles of different biological parameters such as skin conductance and pupil diameter for defining empathy have not been certain yet, they are going to give us the opportunity to revise the inconsistent basis of structural validity in psychiatry and to stabilize descriptive validity. In this review, the

  13. Biological effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trott, K.R.

    1973-01-01

    Following an introduction into the field of cellular radiation effect considering the most important experimental results, the biological significance of the colony formation ability is brought out. The inactivation concept of stem cells does not only prove to be good, according to the present results, in the interpretation of the pathogenesis of acute radiation effects on moult tissue, it also enables chronicle radiation injuries to be interpreted through changes in the fibrous part of the organs. Radiation therapy of tumours can also be explained to a large extent by the radiation effect on the unlimited reproductiveness of tumour cells. The more or less similar dose effect curves for healthy and tumour tissue in practice lead to intermittent irradiation. The dependence of the intermittent doses and intervals on factors such as Elkind recovery, synchronisation, redistribution, reoxygenation, repopulation and regeneration are reviewed. (ORU/LH) [de

  14. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Partners & Collaborators Spotlight on Scientists Research Areas Cancer Biology Research Cancer Genomics Research Research on Causes of ... Collaborators Spotlight on Scientists NCI Research Areas Cancer Biology Cancer Genomics Causes of Cancer Diagnosis Prevention Screening & ...

  15. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Laboratory for Cancer Research Partners & Collaborators Spotlight on Scientists Research Areas Cancer Biology Research Cancer Genomics Research ... Centers Frederick National Lab Partners & Collaborators Spotlight on Scientists NCI Research Areas Cancer Biology Cancer Genomics Causes ...

  16. The Molecular Biology Capstone Assessment: A Concept Assessment for Upper-Division Molecular Biology Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couch, Brian A.; Wood, William B.; Knight, Jennifer K.

    2015-01-01

    Measuring students' conceptual understandings has become increasingly important to biology faculty members involved in evaluating and improving departmental programs. We developed the Molecular Biology Capstone Assessment (MBCA) to gauge comprehension of fundamental concepts in molecular and cell biology and the ability to apply these concepts in…

  17. PSL Chemical Biology Symposia First 2016 Edition: When Chemistry and Biology Share the Language of Discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautier, Arnaud; Rodriguez, Raphaël

    2017-05-18

    Chemical biology, the science of understanding biological processes at the molecular level, has grown exponentially with the development of chemical strategies to manipulate and quantify biology with unprecedented precision. Recent advances presented at the Université Paris Sciences et Lettres symposium are discussed. © 2017 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Integrating Concepts in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luckie, Douglas B; Hoskinson, Anne-Marie; Griffin, Caleigh E; Hess, Andrea L; Price, Katrina J; Tawa, Alex; Thacker, Samantha M

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the educational impact of an intervention, the inquiry-focused textbook Integrating Concepts in Biology ( ICB ), when used in a yearlong introductory biology course sequence. Student learning was evaluated using three published instruments: 1) The Biology Concept Inventory probed depth of student mastery of fundamental concepts in organismal and cellular topics when confronting misconceptions as distractors. ICB students had higher gains in all six topic categories (+43% vs. peers overall, p concepts, like experts. The frequency with which ICB students connected deep-concept pairs, or triplets, was similar to peers; but deep understanding of structure/function was much higher (for pairs: 77% vs. 25%, p < 0.01). 3) A content-focused Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) posttest compared ICB student content knowledge with that of peers from 15 prior years. Historically, MCAT performance for each semester ranged from 53% to 64%; the ICB cohort scored 62%, in the top quintile. Longitudinal tracking in five upper-level science courses the following year found ICB students outperformed peers in physiology (85% vs. 80%, p < 0.01). © 2017 D. B. Luckie et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2017 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).

  19. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C

    2014-02-01

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

  20. Creating biological nanomaterials using synthetic biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rice, MaryJoe K; Ruder, Warren C

    2014-01-01

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

  1. Inspiring Integration in College Students Reading Multiple Biology Texts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firetto, Carla

    2013-01-01

    Introductory biology courses typically present topics on related biological systems across separate chapters and lectures. A complete foundational understanding requires that students understand how these biological systems are related. Unfortunately, spontaneous generation of these connections is rare for novice learners. These experiments focus…

  2. Evolution of Biological Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, Raymond E.

    It is a general rule of nature that larger organisms are more complex, at least as measured by the number of distinct types of cells present. This reflects the fitness advantage conferred by a division of labor among specialized cells over homogeneous totipotency. Yet, increasing size has both costs and benefits, and the search for understanding the driving forces behind the evolution of multicellularity is becoming a very active area of research. This article presents an overview of recent experimental and theoretical work aimed at understanding this biological problem from the perspective of physics. For a class of model organisms, the Volvocine green algae, an emerging hypothesis connects the transition from organisms with totipotent cells to those with terminal germ-soma differentiation to the competition between diffusion and fluid advection created by beating flagella. A number of challenging problems in fluid dynamics, nonlinear dynamics, and control theory emerge when one probes the workings of the simplest multicellular organisms.

  3. Understanding the biological mechanisms of Zika virus disease ...

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

    This project will use advanced biomolecular, genomics and proteomics techniques to explain the molecular mechanisms by which the Zika virus infects and persists in the human body, how it affects the human reproductive and central nervous system, and how the risk of fetal abnormalities can be better predicted in infected ...

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

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Timr, Štěpán; Pleskot, Roman; Kadlec, Jan; Kohagen, Miriam; Magarkar, Aniket; Jungwirth, Pavel

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 3, č. 8 (2017), s. 868-874 ISSN 2374-7943 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP208/12/G016 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : recoverin * membrane * myristoyl * molecular dynamics Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry OBOR OECD: Physical chemistry Impact factor: 7.481, year: 2016 http://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/acscentsci.7b00210

  5. The biology and treatment of cancer: understanding cancer

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stein, Gary S; Pardee, Arthur B. (Arthur Beck)

    2009-01-01

    ... 8 CANCER DETECTION AND BIOMARKERS Arthur B. Pardee and Peng Liang 145 vvi CONTENTS 9 CLINICAL CHALLENGES FOR TREATMENT AND A CURE Eleni Efstathiou and Christopher J. Logothetis 155 10 CLINICAL T...

  6. Systems Biology Approach to Understanding Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-14

    can be used for the accurate diagnosis , prognosis, and evaluation of therapeutics for the disorder. Although many candi- date biomarkers have been...the identification of subgroups from DNAmicroarray data has previously been applied to the study of diseases such as cancer and fibromyalgia .91–93 3...therapeutic applications. The time dependent profile, different for each subject, further complicates the diagnosis . A recent clinical study89 has shown

  7. Understanding the biological mechanisms of Zika virus disease ...

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

    ... as well as via sexual and mother-to-child transmission. It causes a wide spectrum of disease, ranging from symptom-free infections to mild, self-limiting symptoms, to severe infections requiring hospitalization. Additionally, Zika infection in pregnant women has been linked to microcephaly) and other brain abnormalities in ...

  8. Bringing the Real World into the Biology Curriculum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Jenny

    2006-01-01

    This study followed a small but diverse group of biology teachers through the first two years of the pilot for a new Advanced Level Biology course--Salters-Nuffield Advanced Biology. SNAB aims to modernise A-level Biology using real world contexts and examples as the starting point, promoting conceptual understanding rather than factual recall,…

  9. Towards A Theoretical Biology: Reminiscences

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In 1967 I had decided to broaden my activities beyond the theoretical physics I had been engaged in since the start of my career at the University of Chicago. Theoretical biology was among the possibilities I was considering, though I then had no deep understanding of what it was and what it might become. Jack Cowan, a ...

  10. Future Science Teachers' Understandings of Diffusion and Osmosis Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomazic, Iztok; Vidic, Tatjana

    2012-01-01

    The concepts of diffusion and osmosis cross the disciplinary boundaries of physics, chemistry and biology. They are important for understanding how biological systems function. Since future (pre-service) science teachers in Slovenia encounter both concepts at physics, chemistry and biology courses during their studies, we assessed the first-,…

  11. The Dark Matter of Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, Jennifer L

    2016-09-06

    The inside of the cell is full of important, yet invisible species of molecules and proteins that interact weakly but couple together to have huge and important effects in many biological processes. Such "dark matter" inside cells remains mostly hidden, because our tools were developed to investigate strongly interacting species and folded proteins. Example dark-matter species include intrinsically disordered proteins, posttranslational states, ion species, and rare, transient, and weak interactions undetectable by biochemical assays. The dark matter of biology is likely to have multiple, vital roles to regulate signaling, rates of reactions, water structure and viscosity, crowding, and other cellular activities. We need to create new tools to image, detect, and understand these dark-matter species if we are to truly understand fundamental physical principles of biology. Copyright © 2016 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. [The Biology of Learning].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campo-Cabal, Gerardo

    2012-01-01

    The effort to relate mental and biological functioning has fluctuated between two doctrines: 1) an attempt to explain mental functioning as a collective property of the brain and 2) as one relatied to other mental processes associated with specific regions of the brain. The article reviews the main theories developed over the last 200 years: phrenology, the psuedo study of the brain, mass action, cellular connectionism and distributed processing among others. In addition, approaches have emerged in recent years that allows for an understanding of the biological determinants and individual differences in complex mental processes through what is called cognitive neuroscience. Knowing the definition of neuroscience, the learning of memory, the ways in which learning occurs, the principles of the neural basis of memory and learning and its effects on brain function, among other things, allows us the basic understanding of the processes of memory and learning and is an important requirement to address the best manner to commit to the of training future specialists in Psychiatry. Copyright © 2012 Asociación Colombiana de Psiquiatría. Publicado por Elsevier España. All rights reserved.

  13. Systems biology of human atherosclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shalhoub, Joseph; Sikkel, Markus B; Davies, Kerry J; Vorkas, Panagiotis A; Want, Elizabeth J; Davies, Alun H

    2014-01-01

    Systems biology describes a holistic and integrative approach to understand physiology and pathology. The "omic" disciplines include genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolic profiling (metabonomics and metabolomics). By adopting a stance, which is opposing (yet complimentary) to conventional research techniques, systems biology offers an overview by assessing the "net" biological effect imposed by a disease or nondisease state. There are a number of different organizational levels to be understood, from DNA to protein, metabolites, cells, organs and organisms, even beyond this to an organism's context. Systems biology relies on the existence of "nodes" and "edges." Nodes are the constituent part of the system being studied (eg, proteins in the proteome), while the edges are the way these constituents interact. In future, it will be increasingly important to collaborate, collating data from multiple studies to improve data sets, making them freely available and undertaking integrative analyses.

  14. The relativity of biological function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laubichler, Manfred D; Stadler, Peter F; Prohaska, Sonja J; Nowick, Katja

    2015-12-01

    Function is a central concept in biological theories and explanations. Yet discussions about function are often based on a narrow understanding of biological systems and processes, such as idealized molecular systems or simple evolutionary, i.e., selective, dynamics. Conflicting conceptions of function continue to be used in the scientific literature to support certain claims, for instance about the fraction of "functional DNA" in the human genome. Here we argue that all biologically meaningful interpretations of function are necessarily context dependent. This implies that they derive their meaning as well as their range of applicability only within a specific theoretical and measurement context. We use this framework to shed light on the current debate about functional DNA and argue that without considering explicitly the theoretical and measurement contexts all attempts to integrate biological theories are prone to fail.

  15. Integrative radiation systems biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Unger, Kristian

    2014-01-01

    Maximisation of the ratio of normal tissue preservation and tumour cell reduction is the main concept of radiotherapy alone or combined with chemo-, immuno- or biologically targeted therapy. The foremost parameter influencing this ratio is radiation sensitivity and its modulation towards a more efficient killing of tumour cells and a better preservation of normal tissue at the same time is the overall aim of modern therapy schemas. Nevertheless, this requires a deep understanding of the molecular mechanisms of radiation sensitivity in order to identify its key players as potential therapeutic targets. Moreover, the success of conventional approaches that tried to statistically associate altered radiation sensitivity with any molecular phenotype such as gene expression proofed to be somewhat limited since the number of clinically used targets is rather sparse. However, currently a paradigm shift is taking place from pure frequentistic association analysis to the rather holistic systems biology approach that seeks to mathematically model the system to be investigated and to allow the prediction of an altered phenotype as the function of one single or a signature of biomarkers. Integrative systems biology also considers the data from different molecular levels such as the genome, transcriptome or proteome in order to partially or fully comprehend the causal chain of molecular mechanisms. An example for the application of this concept currently carried out at the Clinical Cooperation Group “Personalized Radiotherapy in Head and Neck Cancer” of the Helmholtz-Zentrum München and the LMU Munich is described. This review article strives for providing a compact overview on the state of the art of systems biology, its actual challenges, potential applications, chances and limitations in radiation oncology research working towards improved personalised therapy concepts using this relatively new methodology

  16. Digital 'faces' of synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedrich, Kathrin

    2013-06-01

    In silicio design plays a fundamental role in the endeavour to synthesise biological systems. In particular, computer-aided design software enables users to manage the complexity of biological entities that is connected to their construction and reconfiguration. The software's graphical user interface bridges the gap between the machine-readable data on the algorithmic subface of the computer and its human-amenable surface represented by standardised diagrammatic elements. Notations like the Systems Biology Graphical Notation (SBGN), together with interactive operations such as drag & drop, allow the user to visually design and simulate synthetic systems as 'bio-algorithmic signs'. Finally, the digital programming process should be extended to the wet lab to manufacture the designed synthetic biological systems. By exploring the different 'faces' of synthetic biology, I argue that in particular computer-aided design (CAD) is pushing the idea to automatically produce de novo objects. Multifaceted software processes serve mutually aesthetic, epistemic and performative purposes by simultaneously black-boxing and bridging different data sources, experimental operations and community-wide standards. So far, synthetic biology is mainly a product of digital media technologies that structurally mimic the epistemological challenge to take both qualitative as well as quantitative aspects of biological systems into account in order to understand and produce new and functional entities. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Uncovering the Biology of Cancers in Adolescents and Young Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evidence suggests that some adolescent and young adult cancers may have unique genetic and biological features. Researchers are trying to better understand the biology of these cancers in order to identify potential therapeutic targets.

  18. Disturb or stabilise? Effects of different molecules on biological membranes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Siwko, Magdalena Elzbieta

    2008-01-01

    The properties of biological membranes are often regulated by special molecules produced by organisms. Knowledge about the mechanisms by which these molecules affect biological membranes is a key issue in understanding living organisms. The interactions between phospholipid membranes and different

  19. Radiation biology for the non-biologist

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Myers, D.K.

    1978-06-01

    This colloquium introduces some of the general concepts used in cell biology and in the study of the effects of ionizing radiation on living organisms. The present research activities in radiation biology in the Biology Branch at the Chalk River Nuclear Laboratories cover a broad range of interests in the entire chain of events by which the initial radiation-induced changes in the living cell are translated into significant biological effects, including the eventual production of cancers and hereditary defects. The main theme of these research activities is an understanding of the mechanisms by which radiation damage to DNA (the carrier of hereditary information in all living organisms) can be actively repaired by the living cell. Advances in our understanding of these processes have broad implications for other areas of biology but also bear directly on the assessment of the biological hazards of ionizing radiation. The colloquium concludes with a brief discussion of the hazards of low-level radiation. (author)

  20. Geoparks for understanding geodiversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anttila-Muilu, Sirpa

    2015-04-01

    Global Geoparks are sites which promote their geodiversity through community-led initiatives to enhance regional sustainable development and environmental education. The Global Geoparks Network (GGN) now includes 111 sites in 32 countries. Finland's only and the world's northernmost Geopark, Rokua Geopark, is part of the Global and European Geoparks Networks operating under the auspices of UNESCO. This kind of global networking enhances the possibilities of learning geodiversity in different spatial scales, i.e. locally, regionally and globally. The networking of Geoparks also supports science and environmental education at schools. The schools just have get to know the Geoparks and get connected with them. I am working as a biology and geography teacher at Oulun Lyseon lukio which is an upper secondary school at Oulu, Finland. The Rokua Geopark locates about 50 kilometers southeast from Oulu. So, the proximity of the Rokua Geopark explains my interest. However, it is not the only reason. I'm also concerned about the diminishing amount of physical geography which will be taught in Finnish upper secondary schools according to the new national curriculum. As the amount of teaching geography will be diminished, the quality should be made better and more interesting for students. In my poster I show practical examples what has been done at Rokua Geopark and in Finland to support science and environmental education at schools. These examples include the creation of geological spots and trails which students can visit with their class trips to Rokua Geopark. As the class field trips are not so common because of their costs the digital resources offer an alternative for learning. In the classrooms it is possible to play an educational board game which occurs at Rokua Geopark. Teachers can print the actual board game with instructions and question cards from the Rokua Geopark's net page. I also give some ideas how e-learning, digital resources and global connections can be

  1. Biological and Chemical Impact to Educational Facilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manicone, Santo

    2002-01-01

    Discusses preparing an educational facility to address the threat of biological or chemical terrorism, including understanding the potential impact, implementing information and communication systems, and improving medical surveillance and awareness. (EV)

  2. Network Reconstruction of Dynamic Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Asadi, Behrang

    2013-01-01

    Inference of network topology from experimental data is a central endeavor in biology, since knowledge of the underlying signaling mechanisms a requirement for understanding biological phenomena. As one of the most important tools in bioinformatics area, development of methods to reconstruct biological networks has attracted remarkable attention in the current decade. Integration of different data types can lead to remarkable improvements in our ability to identify the connectivity of differe...

  3. History of the molecular biology of cytomegaloviruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stinski, Mark F

    2014-01-01

    The history of the molecular biology of cytomegaloviruses from the purification of the virus and the viral DNA to the cloning and expression of the viral genes is reviewed. A key genetic element of cytomegalovirus (the CMV promoter) contributed to our understanding of eukaryotic cell molecular biology and to the development of lifesaving therapeutic proteins. The study of the molecular biology of cytomegaloviruses also contributed to the development of antivirals to control the viral infection.

  4. The biology of melanoma prognostic factors.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spatz, A.; Stock, N.; Batist, G.; Kempen, L.C.L.T. van

    2010-01-01

    Cutaneous melanoma still represents a paradox among all solid tumors. It is the cancer for which the best prognostic markers ever identified in solid tumors are available, yet there is very little understanding of their biological significance. This review focuses on recent biological data that shed

  5. Computational structural biology: methods and applications

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Schwede, Torsten; Peitsch, Manuel Claude

    2008-01-01

    ... sequencing reinforced the observation that structural information is needed to understand the detailed function and mechanism of biological molecules such as enzyme reactions and molecular recognition events. Furthermore, structures are obviously key to the design of molecules with new or improved functions. In this context, computational structural biology...

  6. Understanding Polymer-Cell Attachment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venturato, Andrea; MacFarlane, Gillian; Geng, Jin; Bradley, Mark

    2016-12-01

    The development of polymeric materials with cell adhesion abilities requires an understanding of cell-surface interactions which vary with cell type. To investigate the correlation between cell attachment and the nature of the polymer, a series of random and block copolymers composed of 2-(dimethylamino)ethyl acrylate and ethyl acrylate are synthesized through single electron transfer living radical polymerization. The polymers are synthesized with highly defined and controlled monomer compositions and exhibited narrow polydispersity indices. These polymers are examined for their performance in the attachment and growth of HeLa and HEK cells, with attachment successfully modeled on monomer composition and polymer chain length, with both cell lines found to preferentially attach to moderately hydrophobic functional materials. The understanding of the biological-material interactions assessed in this study will underpin further investigations of engineered polymer scaffolds with predictable cell binding performance. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  7. The Concept of Biological/Ecological interaction: contributions to studies in Epistemology of Biology and Biology Education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fúlvia Eloá Maricato

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Epistemology of biology has been the subject of many discussions in the field of Science and Biology education. This study aimed to bring new elaborations to enrich these discussions, highlighting its importance and how this epistemology canbe inserted in Science and Biology education. The presented investigation is anchored on three main pillars:(i some reflections on epistemologyof biology; (iithe importance and vagueness of the concept of biological/ecological interaction in literature; (iii the empirical investigation on epistemologyof biology by this research group. The semiotic analysis allowed us to infer that the research subjects: expressed to understand the importance, amplitude and centrality of this concept to the Biology Knowledge; evolved from a starting vision in which it was only understood the biological interactions with the external environment to one in which we start to understand the biological interactions in several levels of organization thus, advancing from a syncretic/abductive thinking to a deductive reasoning, going through the inductive one; and are concerned on how to teach the studied concept to their future students. This analysisallowed some reflections that can contribute to a creation of a solid epistemology of biology in its many contexts, with the main focus on initial teacher training.

  8. Review of Biological Network Data and Its Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Donghyeon Yu

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Studying biological networks, such as protein-protein interactions, is key to understanding complex biological activities. Various types of large-scale biological datasets have been collected and analyzed with high-throughput technologies, including DNA microarray, next-generation sequencing, and the two-hybrid screening system, for this purpose. In this review, we focus on network-based approaches that help in understanding biological systems and identifying biological functions. Accordingly, this paper covers two major topics in network biology: reconstruction of gene regulatory networks and network-based applications, including protein function prediction, disease gene prioritization, and network-based genome-wide association study.

  9. Biological effects of radiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2013-01-01

    This fourth chapter presents: cell structure and metabolism; radiation interaction with biological tissues; steps of the production of biological effect of radiation; radiosensitivity of tissues; classification of biological effects; reversibility, transmissivity and influence factors; pre-natal biological effects; biological effects in therapy and syndrome of acute irradiation

  10. Mitochondria in biology and medicine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Claus Desler; Rasmussen, Lene Juel

    2012-01-01

    pathologies (Luft, 1994). Since 1959, the understanding of mitochondrial cytopathies has evolved immensely and mitochondrial cytopathies are now known to be the largest group of metabolic diseases and to be resulting in a wide variety of pathologies. "Mitochondria in Biology and Medicine" was the title...... of the first annual conference of Society of Mitochondrial Research and Medicine - India. The conference was organized by A. S. Sreedhar, Keshav Singh and Kumarasamy Thangaraj, and was held at The Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) Hyderabad, India, during 9-10 December 2011. The conference...

  11. Molecular Biology and Prevention of Endometrial Cancer. Addendum

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Maxwell, George L

    2008-01-01

    Objective: To increase our understanding of the molecular aberrations associated with endometrial carcinogenesis and the biologic mechanisms underlying the protective effect of oral contraceptive (OC) therapy. Methods: 1...

  12. Molecular biology of the cell

    CERN Document Server

    Alberts, Bruce; Lewis, Julian

    2000-01-01

    Molecular Biology of the Cell is the classic in-dept text reference in cell biology. By extracting the fundamental concepts from this enormous and ever-growing field, the authors tell the story of cell biology, and create a coherent framework through which non-expert readers may approach the subject. Written in clear and concise language, and beautifully illustrated, the book is enjoyable to read, and it provides a clear sense of the excitement of modern biology. Molecular Biology of the Cell sets forth the current understanding of cell biology (completely updated as of Autumn 2001), and it explores the intriguing implications and possibilities of the great deal that remains unknown. The hallmark features of previous editions continue in the Fourth Edition. The book is designed with a clean and open, single-column layout. The art program maintains a completely consistent format and style, and includes over 1,600 photographs, electron micrographs, and original drawings by the authors. Clear and concise concept...

  13. Where Synthetic Biology Meets ET

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Synthetic Biology and Personalized Medicine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, K.K.

    2013-01-01

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

  15. The biology of strigolactones

    KAUST Repository

    Ruyter-Spira, Carolien P.

    2013-02-01

    The strigolactones are rhizosphere signaling molecules as well as a new class of plant hormones with a still increasing number of biological functions being uncovered. Here, we review a recent major breakthrough in our understanding of strigolactone biosynthesis, which has revealed the unexpected simplicity of the originally postulated complex pathway. Moreover, the discovery and localization of a strigolactone exporter sheds new light on putative strigolactone fluxes to the rhizosphere as well as within the plant. The combination of these data with information on the expression and regulation of strigolactone biosynthetic and downstream signaling genes provides new insights into how strigolactones control the many different aspects of plant development and how their rhizosphere signaling role may have evolved. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.

  16. Biologic poisons for pain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reisner, Lori

    2004-12-01

    Pain therapies from natural sources date back thousands of years to the use of plant and animal extracts for a variety of painful conditions and injuries. We certainly are all familiar with modern uses of plant-derived analgesic compounds such as opium derivatives from papaverum somniferum and salicylates from willow bark (Salix species). Local anesthetics were isolated from coca leaves in the late 1800s. Sarapin, derived from carnivorous pitcher plants, has been injected for regional analgesia in human and veterinary medicine, but efficacy is controversial. Biologic organisms can play important roles in developing an understanding of pain mechanisms, either from isolation of compounds that are analgesic or of compounds that produce pain, hyperalgesia, and allodynia.

  17. Defining the Synthetic Biology Supply Chain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Frazar, Sarah L.; Hund, Gretchen E.; Bonheyo, George T.; Diggans, James; Bartholomew, Rachel A.; Gehrig, Lindsey; Greaves, Mark

    2017-08-01

    In this article, a team of experts in synthetic biology, data analytics, and national security describe the overall supply chain surrounding synthetic biology. The team analyzes selected interactions within that network to better understand the risks raised by synthetic biology and identifies opportunities for risk mitigation. To introduce the concept, the article will briefly describe how an understanding of supply chains has been important in promoting nuclear nonproliferation objectives. The article concludes by assessing the structure and networks identified in the supply chains to reveal potential opportunities for future biodefense research and development; options for additional information exchange; and means to interdict, detect, or deter suspicious activity.

  18. Reproductive biology in the era of genomics biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazer, Fuller W; Spencer, Thomas E

    2005-08-01

    Current and emerging technologies in reproductive biology, including assisted reproductive technologies and animal cloning, are discussed in the context of the impact of genomics era biology. The discussion focuses on the endocrinology associated with establishment and maintenance of pregnancy, fetal-placental development, lactation, and neonatal survival. Various aspects of uterine biology, including development during the neonatal period and function in adult females, are discussed with respect to reproductive efficiency. It is clear that combining strategies for use of conventional animal models for studying the reproductive system with new genomics technologies will provide exceptional opportunities in discovery research involving data integration and application of functional genomics to benefit animal agriculture and the biomedical community. New and emerging biotechnologies and comparative genomics approaches will greatly advance our understanding of genes that are critical to development of the reproductive system and to key events at each stage of the reproductive cycle of females and males.

  19. Metaphor, skepticism, understanding Metaphor, skepticism, understanding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helena Martins

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available

    This paper examines the idea that metaphor is a basic cognitive tool from a Wittgensteinian point of view. One specific aspect of Wittgenstein’s legacy is explored, namely his account of verbal understanding. Two interconnected and notoriously difficult features of this account are highlighted and discussed: the idea that linguistic understanding is not an event or a process, but an “abiding condition” (Philosophical Investigations, §143-84; and the idea that neither the meaning of a linguistic expression nor our understanding of it can ever go beyond our capacity of explaining it (Philosophical Investigations, §75. This perspective is shown to be particularly apt in reflecting upon the virtues of metaphor as a means of understanding, especially because it allows for the avoidance of both essentialist and skeptical accounts.

    This paper examines the idea that metaphor is a basic cognitive tool from a Wittgensteinian point of view. One specific aspect of Wittgenstein’s legacy is explored, namely his account of verbal understanding. Two interconnected and notoriously difficult features of this account are highlighted and discussed: the idea that linguistic understanding is not an event or a process, but an “abiding condition” (Philosophical Investigations, §143-84; and the idea that neither the meaning of a linguistic expression nor our understanding of it can ever go beyond our capacity of explaining it (Philosophical Investigations, §75. This perspective is shown to be particularly apt in reflecting upon the virtues of metaphor as a means of understanding, especially because it allows for the avoidance of both essentialist and skeptical accounts

  20. Network biology methods integrating biological data for translational science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bebek, Gurkan; Koyutürk, Mehmet; Price, Nathan D; Chance, Mark R

    2012-07-01

    The explosion of biomedical data, both on the genomic and proteomic side as well as clinical data, will require complex integration and analysis to provide new molecular variables to better understand the molecular basis of phenotype. Currently, much data exist in silos and is not analyzed in frameworks where all data are brought to bear in the development of biomarkers and novel functional targets. This is beginning to change. Network biology approaches, which emphasize the interactions between genes, proteins and metabolites provide a framework for data integration such that genome, proteome, metabolome and other -omics data can be jointly analyzed to understand and predict disease phenotypes. In this review, recent advances in network biology approaches and results are identified. A common theme is the potential for network analysis to provide multiplexed and functionally connected biomarkers for analyzing the molecular basis of disease, thus changing our approaches to analyzing and modeling genome- and proteome-wide data.

  1. Understanding Identity and Organizations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Lars Thøger

    2013-01-01

    The article reviews the book "Understanding Identity and Organizations," by Kate Kenny, Andrea Whitle, and Hugh Wilmott.......The article reviews the book "Understanding Identity and Organizations," by Kate Kenny, Andrea Whitle, and Hugh Wilmott....

  2. Understanding Hereditary Angioedema

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Allergy Library ▸ Understanding Hereditary Angioedema Share | Understanding Hereditary Angioedema This article has been reviewed by Thanai Pongdee, MD, FAAAAI Hereditary Angioedema (HAE) is a rare genetic condition. People with ...

  3. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Prognosis Questions to Ask about Your Diagnosis Research Understanding Cancer Prognosis Oncologist Anthony L. Back, M.D., ... find our information on Coping With Cancer helpful. Understanding Statistics About Survival Doctors estimate prognosis by using ...

  4. Understanding in mathematics

    CERN Document Server

    Sierpinska, Anna

    1994-01-01

    The concept of understanding in mathematics with regard to mathematics education is considered in this volume, the main problem for mathematics teachers being how to facilitate their students'' understanding of the mathematics being taught.

  5. Understanding Food Labels

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Healthy eating for girls Understanding food labels Understanding food labels There is lots of info on food ... need to avoid because of food allergies. Other food label terms top In addition to the Nutrition ...

  6. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Care Unusual Cancers of Childhood Treatment Childhood Cancer Genomics Study Findings Metastatic Cancer Metastatic Cancer Research Common ... on Scientists Research Areas Cancer Biology Research Cancer Genomics Research Research on Causes of Cancer Cancer Diagnosis ...

  7. [Molecular biology of brain meningiomas].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byvalsev, V A; Stepanov, I A; Belykh, E G; Yarullina, A I

    2017-01-01

    Meningiomas are by far the most common tumors arising from the minges. A myriad of aberrant signaling pathways involved with meningioma tumorigenesis, have been discovered. Understanding these disrupted pathways will aid in deciphering the relationship between various genetic changes and their downstream effects on meningioma pathogenesis. An understanding of the genetic and molecular profile of meningioma would provide a valuable first step towards developing more effective treatment for this intracranial tumor. Chromosomes 1, 10, 14, 22, their associated genes, have been linked to meningioma proliferation and progression. It is presumed that through an understanding of these genetic factors, more educated meningioma treatment techniques can be implemented. Future therapies will include combinations of targeted molecular agents including gene therapy, si-RNA mediation, proton therapy, and other approaches as a result of continued progress in the understanding of genetic and biological changes associated with meningiomas.

  8. The mathematics behind biological invasions

    CERN Document Server

    Lewis, Mark A; Potts, Jonathan R

    2016-01-01

    This book investigates the mathematical analysis of biological invasions. Unlike purely qualitative treatments of ecology, it draws on mathematical theory and methods, equipping the reader with sharp tools and rigorous methodology. Subjects include invasion dynamics, species interactions, population spread, long-distance dispersal, stochastic effects, risk analysis, and optimal responses to invaders. While based on the theory of dynamical systems, including partial differential equations and integrodifference equations, the book also draws on information theory, machine learning, Monte Carlo methods, optimal control, statistics, and stochastic processes. Applications to real biological invasions are included throughout. Ultimately, the book imparts a powerful principle: that by bringing ecology and mathematics together, researchers can uncover new understanding of, and effective response strategies to, biological invasions. It is suitable for graduate students and established researchers in mathematical ecolo...

  9. Mesoscopic models of biological membranes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Venturoli, M.; Sperotto, Maria Maddalena; Kranenburg, M.

    2006-01-01

    Phospholipids are the main components of biological membranes and dissolved in water these molecules self-assemble into closed structures, of which bilayers are the most relevant from a biological point of view. Lipid bilayers are often used, both in experimental and by theoretical investigations......, as model systems to understand the fundamental properties of biomembranes. The properties of lipid bilayers can be studied at different time and length scales. For some properties it is sufficient to envision a membrane as an elastic sheet, while for others it is important to take into account the details...... to coarse grain a biological membrane. The conclusion of this comparison is that there can be many valid different strategies, but that the results obtained by the various mesoscopic models are surprisingly consistent. A second objective of this review is to illustrate how mesoscopic models can be used...

  10. The biology of cultural conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berns, Gregory S.; Atran, Scott

    2012-01-01

    Although culture is usually thought of as the collection of knowledge and traditions that are transmitted outside of biology, evidence continues to accumulate showing how biology and culture are inseparably intertwined. Cultural conflict will occur only when the beliefs and traditions of one cultural group represent a challenge to individuals of another. Such a challenge will elicit brain processes involved in cognitive decision-making, emotional activation and physiological arousal associated with the outbreak, conduct and resolution of conflict. Key targets to understand bio-cultural differences include primitive drives—how the brain responds to likes and dislikes, how it discounts the future, and how this relates to reproductive behaviour—but also higher level functions, such as how the mind represents and values the surrounding physical and social environment. Future cultural wars, while they may bear familiar labels of religion and politics, will ultimately be fought over control of our biology and our environment. PMID:22271779

  11. Valuation of Understanding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiberg, Merete

    An important aim for the teacher in Higher Education is that students, in order to learn, achieve understanding in terms of being able to handle knowledge in a certain way. In this paper focus will be on understanding as a phenomenon which is permeated with values of what good understanding might...... be. Understanding is to be discussed as a phenomenon which in its definition is relative to the paradigm of educational thinking in which it is embedded. Paradigms of valuation of understanding in higher education will be viewed from two perspectives: An anglosaxon curriculum studies tradition...

  12. Memorandum of Understanding.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Siple, Bud H. [Sandia National Laboratories (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2014-07-01

    A Memorandum of Understanding establishes a clear understanding of how an agreement is going to be implemented. The Memorandum of Understanding allows all involved to specifically understand that they are agreeing to the same thing and the terms are clearly identified. It also includes the clear distinction of functions and the level of involvement of the agencies involved. Specifically, a Memorandum of Understanding gives a chance to all of those involved in the agreement to see on paper as to what they all have agreed to.

  13. Cancer research meets evolutionary biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pepper, John W; Scott Findlay, C; Kassen, Rees; Spencer, Sabrina L; Maley, Carlo C

    2009-02-01

    There is increasing evidence that Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection provides insights into the etiology and treatment of cancer. On a microscopic scale, neoplastic cells meet the conditions for evolution by Darwinian selection: cell reproduction with heritable variability that affects cell survival and replication. This suggests that, like other areas of biological and biomedical research, Darwinian theory can provide a general framework for understanding many aspects of cancer, including problems of great clinical importance. With the availability of raw molecular data increasing rapidly, this theory may provide guidance in translating data into understanding and progress. Several conceptual and analytical tools from evolutionary biology can be applied to cancer biology. Two clinical problems may benefit most from the application of Darwinian theory: neoplastic progression and acquired therapeutic resistance. The Darwinian theory of cancer has especially profound implications for drug development, both in terms of explaining past difficulties, and pointing the way toward new approaches. Because cancer involves complex evolutionary processes, research should incorporate both tractable (simplified) experimental systems, and also longitudinal observational studies of the evolutionary dynamics of cancer in laboratory animals and in human patients. Cancer biology will require new tools to control the evolution of neoplastic cells.

  14. Pathogenesis and biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkler, Frank

    2018-01-01

    Metastasis to the brain is an increasing complication of solid cancers. Fortunately, our understanding of its pathogenesis has greatly increased in the last decade, with crucial insights into the molecular and cellular determinants of successful brain colonization; some aspects remain less well understood. The latter include the exact features of brain metastasis-initiating cancer cells, and a potential premetastatic niche. It is clear that a brain-arrested cancer cell has to master a sequence of steps to eventually grow to a clinically relevant brain metastasis. Various brain-specific cell types and molecular niches promote or hinder brain colonization in a dynamic and reciprocal manner. After mandatory extravasation and colonization of a brain-specific perivascular niche, the cancer cell can stay dormant, or further grow by dynamic interactions with cerebral blood vessels. In addition, the activation of certain molecular pathways on site of the cancer cell which are related to growth, motility, survival, and adaptation to the brain environment appears also important, given their characteristic modification in brain metastases of patients. A deeper understanding of the most vulnerable steps of the brain metastatic cascade may foster the development of novel preventive approaches, and that of core biologic mechanisms for macrometastatic growth and persistence will help to develop better therapeutics. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Integrating quantitative thinking into an introductory biology course improves students' mathematical reasoning in biological contexts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hester, Susan; Buxner, Sanlyn; Elfring, Lisa; Nagy, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Recent calls for improving undergraduate biology education have emphasized the importance of students learning to apply quantitative skills to biological problems. Motivated by students' apparent inability to transfer their existing quantitative skills to biological contexts, we designed and taught an introductory molecular and cell biology course in which we integrated application of prerequisite mathematical skills with biology content and reasoning throughout all aspects of the course. In this paper, we describe the principles of our course design and present illustrative examples of course materials integrating mathematics and biology. We also designed an outcome assessment made up of items testing students' understanding of biology concepts and their ability to apply mathematical skills in biological contexts and administered it as a pre/postcourse test to students in the experimental section and other sections of the same course. Precourse results confirmed students' inability to spontaneously transfer their prerequisite mathematics skills to biological problems. Pre/postcourse outcome assessment comparisons showed that, compared with students in other sections, students in the experimental section made greater gains on integrated math/biology items. They also made comparable gains on biology items, indicating that integrating quantitative skills into an introductory biology course does not have a deleterious effect on students' biology learning.

  16. Integrating Quantitative Thinking into an Introductory Biology Course Improves Students’ Mathematical Reasoning in Biological Contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hester, Susan; Buxner, Sanlyn; Elfring, Lisa; Nagy, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    Recent calls for improving undergraduate biology education have emphasized the importance of students learning to apply quantitative skills to biological problems. Motivated by students’ apparent inability to transfer their existing quantitative skills to biological contexts, we designed and taught an introductory molecular and cell biology course in which we integrated application of prerequisite mathematical skills with biology content and reasoning throughout all aspects of the course. In this paper, we describe the principles of our course design and present illustrative examples of course materials integrating mathematics and biology. We also designed an outcome assessment made up of items testing students’ understanding of biology concepts and their ability to apply mathematical skills in biological contexts and administered it as a pre/postcourse test to students in the experimental section and other sections of the same course. Precourse results confirmed students’ inability to spontaneously transfer their prerequisite mathematics skills to biological problems. Pre/postcourse outcome assessment comparisons showed that, compared with students in other sections, students in the experimental section made greater gains on integrated math/biology items. They also made comparable gains on biology items, indicating that integrating quantitative skills into an introductory biology course does not have a deleterious effect on students’ biology learning. PMID:24591504

  17. Dyneins: structure, biology and disease

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    King, Stephen M

    2012-01-01

    .... From bench to bedside, Dynein: Structure, Biology and Disease offers research on fundamental cellular processes to researchers and clinicians across developmental biology, cell biology, molecular biology, biophysics, biomedicine...

  18. Learning Biology by Designing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssen, Fred; Waarlo, Arend Jan

    2010-01-01

    According to a century-old tradition in biological thinking, organisms can be considered as being optimally designed. In modern biology this idea still has great heuristic value. In evolutionary biology a so-called design heuristic has been formulated which provides guidance to researchers in the generation of knowledge about biological systems.…

  19. Biological conversion system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, C.D.

    A system for bioconversion of organic material comprises a primary bioreactor column wherein a biological active agent (zymomonas mobilis) converts the organic material (sugar) to a product (alcohol), a rejuvenator column wherein the biological activity of said biological active agent is enhanced, and means for circulating said biological active agent between said primary bioreactor column and said rejuvenator column.

  20. [Biogeography: geography or biology?].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kafanov, A I

    2009-01-01

    General biogeography is an interdisciplinary science, which combines geographic and biological aspects constituting two distinct research fields: biological geography and geographic biology. These fields differ in the nature of their objects of study, employ different methods and represent Earth sciences and biological sciences, respectively. It is suggested therefore that the classification codes for research fields and the state professional education standard should be revised.

  1. [Biological rhythms for anaesthesia and intensive care].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dispersyn, G; Chassard, D; Pain, L

    2010-06-01

    Knowledge of biological rhythms has led to better understanding of the time-of-day dependent effects of anaesthetic drugs. These chronopharmacological effects are currently explained by the biological rhythms modulating the pharmacokinetic, toxic and pharmacodynamic parameters of these substances. Such effect has been described for general anesthetics, local anaesthetics, analgesics as well as for antibiotics. But recent data also highlight that general anaesthetics, probably part of their brain effects, also alter the regulation of biological rhythms, including the sleep-wake or the endogenous circadian temperature rhythms. This desynchronization of biological rhythms can led to disturbance of the circadian secretion of many substances, including hormones. Finally, biological rhythms have been also described with regard to physiology of pain and cardiovascular physiopathology. The concept of biological rhythm should be present in mind not only for the clinical management of patients but also for setting studies in the field of anaesthesia, pain and intensive care. 2010. Published by Elsevier SAS.

  2. Classification of Recombinant Biologics in the EU

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klein, Kevin; De Bruin, Marie L; Broekmans, Andre W

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Biological medicinal products (biologics) are subject to specific pharmacovigilance requirements to ensure that biologics are identifiable by brand name and batch number in adverse drug reaction (ADR) reports. Since Member States collect ADR data at the national level...... before the data is aggregated at the European Union (EU) level, it is important that an unambiguous understanding of which medicinal products belong to the biological product category exists. This study aimed to identify the level of consistency between Member States regarding the classification...... of biologics by national authorities responsible for ADR reporting. METHODS: A sample list of recombinant biologics from the European Medicines Agency database of European Public Assessment Reports was created to analyze five Member States (Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, and the UK) according...

  3. Mathematical Modeling of Complex Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Fischer, Hans Peter

    2008-01-01

    To understand complex biological systems such as cells, tissues, or even the human body, it is not sufficient to identify and characterize the individual molecules in the system. It also is necessary to obtain a thorough understanding of the interaction between molecules and pathways. This is even truer for understanding complex diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, or alcoholism. With recent technological advances enabling researchers to monitor complex cellular processes on the mole...

  4. Inverse problems in systems biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Engl, Heinz W; Lu, James; Müller, Stefan; Flamm, Christoph; Schuster, Peter; Kügler, Philipp

    2009-01-01

    Systems biology is a new discipline built upon the premise that an understanding of how cells and organisms carry out their functions cannot be gained by looking at cellular components in isolation. Instead, consideration of the interplay between the parts of systems is indispensable for analyzing, modeling, and predicting systems' behavior. Studying biological processes under this premise, systems biology combines experimental techniques and computational methods in order to construct predictive models. Both in building and utilizing models of biological systems, inverse problems arise at several occasions, for example, (i) when experimental time series and steady state data are used to construct biochemical reaction networks, (ii) when model parameters are identified that capture underlying mechanisms or (iii) when desired qualitative behavior such as bistability or limit cycle oscillations is engineered by proper choices of parameter combinations. In this paper we review principles of the modeling process in systems biology and illustrate the ill-posedness and regularization of parameter identification problems in that context. Furthermore, we discuss the methodology of qualitative inverse problems and demonstrate how sparsity enforcing regularization allows the determination of key reaction mechanisms underlying the qualitative behavior. (topical review)

  5. Preservice Biology Teachers' Conceptions about the Tentative Nature of Theories and Models in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinisch, Bianca; Krüger, Dirk

    2018-01-01

    In research on the nature of science, there is a need to investigate the role and status of different scientific knowledge forms. Theories and models are two of the most important knowledge forms within biology and are the focus of this study. During interviews, preservice biology teachers (N = 10) were asked about their understanding of theories…

  6. Understanding quantum physics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spillner, Vera

    2011-01-01

    This thesis presents a bundle definition for 'scientific understanding' through which the empirically equivalent interpretations of quantum mechanics can be evaluated with respect to the understanding they generate. The definition of understanding is based on a sufficient and necessary criterion, as well as a bundle of conditions - where a theory can be called most understandable whenever it fulfills the highest number of bundle criteria. Thereby the definition of understanding is based on the one hand on the objective number of criteria a theory fulfills, as well as, on the other hand, on the individual's preference of bundle criteria. Applying the definition onto three interpretations of quantum mechanics, the interpretation of David Bohm appears as most understandable, followed by the interpretation of Tim Maudlin and the Kopenhagen interpretation. These three interpretations are discussed in length in my thesis. (orig.)

  7. Integrated Modular Teaching of Human Biology for Primary Care Practitioners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glasgow, Michael S.

    1977-01-01

    Describes the use of integrated modular teaching of the human biology component of the Health Associate Program at Johns Hopkins University, where the goal is to develop an understanding of the sciences as applied to primary care. Discussion covers the module sequence, the human biology faculty, goals of the human biology faculty, laboratory…

  8. Bringing RNA into View: RNA and Its Roles in Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkins, John F.; Ellington, Andrew; Friedman, B. Ellen; Gesteland, Raymond F.; Noller, Harry F.; Pasquale, Stephen M.; Storey, Richard D.; Uhlenbeck, Olke C.; Weiner, Alan M.

    This guide presents a module for college students on ribonucleic acid (RNA) and its role in biology. The module aims to integrate the latest research and its findings into college-level biology and provide an opportunity for students to understand biological processes. Four activities are presented: (1) "RNA Structure: Tapes to Shapes"; (2) "RNA…

  9. Systems biology approaches and pathway tools for investigating cardiovascular disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wheelock, C.E.; Wheelock, A.M.; Kawashima, S.; Diez, D.; Kanehisa, M.; Erk, M. van; Kleemann, R.; Haeggström, J.Z.; Goto, S.

    2009-01-01

    Systems biology aims to understand the nonlinear interactions of multiple biomolecular components that characterize a living organism. One important aspect of systems biology approaches is to identify the biological pathways or networks that connect the differing elements of a system, and examine

  10. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... our information on Coping With Cancer helpful. Understanding Statistics About Survival Doctors estimate prognosis by using statistics that researchers have collected over many years about ...

  11. Human biological rhythm in traditional Chinese medicine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tianxing Zhang

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM has a comprehensive and thorough understanding of biological rhythm. Biological rhythm is an inherent connotation of “harmony between human and nature”, one of the thoughts in TCM. TCM discusses emphatically circadian rhythm, syzygial rhythm and seasonal rhythm, and particularly circadian and seasonal rhythms. Theories of Yin Yang and Five Elements are the principles and methods, with which TCM understands biological rhythms. Based on theories in TCM, biological rhythm in essence is a continuous variation of the human body state synchronized with natural rhythms, and theories of Yin Yang and Five Elements are both language tools to describe this continuous variation and theoretical tools for its investigation and application. The understandings of biological rhythm in TCM can be applied to etiology, health care, disease control and treatment. Many understandings in TCM have been confirmed by modern research and clinical reports, but there are still some pending issues. TCM is distinguished for its holistic viewpoint on biological rhythms.

  12. Physics and Biology Collaborate to Color the World

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dennis W. C.

    2013-01-01

    To understand how life works, it is essential to understand physics and chemistry. Most biologists have a clear notion of where chemistry fits into their life sciences research and teaching. Although we are physical beings, physics does not always find a place in the biology curriculum. Physics informs and enlightens biology in myriad dimensions,…

  13. Understanding cancer onset

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Veldhuis, Djuke

    2015-01-01

    Researchers in Malaysia analysed the genomes of people with a rare genetic disorder to better understand people’s predisposition to cancer across generations.......Researchers in Malaysia analysed the genomes of people with a rare genetic disorder to better understand people’s predisposition to cancer across generations....

  14. Understanding Menstrual Migraine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calhoun, Anne H

    2018-04-01

    Menstrual-related migraine is very prevalent, very disabling, yet very easy to manage given a good understanding of its cause. This article is intended to help with that understanding and to enable headache specialists to prescribe or create effective hormonal preventives of menstrual-related migraine. © 2018 American Headache Society.

  15. Understanding the visual resource

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floyd L. Newby

    1971-01-01

    Understanding our visual resources involves a complex interweaving of motivation and cognitive recesses; but, more important, it requires that we understand and can identify those characteristics of a landscape that influence the image formation process. From research conducted in Florida, three major variables were identified that appear to have significant effect...

  16. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Questions to Ask about Your Diagnosis Research Understanding Cancer Prognosis Oncologist Anthony L. Back, M.D., a ... for provider care teams (PDF-210KB). Understanding Your Cancer Prognosis Video View this video on YouTube. Three ...

  17. Communication theory and multicellular biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mian, I S; Rose, C

    2011-04-01

    In this Perspective, we propose that communication theory--a field of mathematics concerned with the problems of signal transmission, reception and processing--provides a new quantitative lens for investigating multicellular biology, ancient and modern. What underpins the cohesive organisation and collective behaviour of multicellular ecosystems such as microbial colonies and communities (microbiomes) and multicellular organisms such as plants and animals, whether built of simple tissue layers (sponges) or of complex differentiated cells arranged in tissues and organs (members of the 35 or so phyla of the subkingdom Metazoa)? How do mammalian tissues and organs develop, maintain their architecture, become subverted in disease, and decline with age? How did single-celled organisms coalesce to produce many-celled forms that evolved and diversified into the varied multicellular organisms in existence today? Some answers can be found in the blueprints or recipes encoded in (epi)genomes, yet others lie in the generic physical properties of biological matter such as the ability of cell aggregates to attain a certain complexity in size, shape, and pattern. We suggest that Lasswell's maxim "Who says what to whom in what channel with what effect" provides a foundation for understanding not only the emergence and evolution of multicellularity, but also the assembly and sculpting of multicellular ecosystems and many-celled structures, whether of natural or human-engineered origin. We explore how the abstraction of communication theory as an organising principle for multicellular biology could be realised. We highlight the inherent ability of communication theory to be blind to molecular and/or genetic mechanisms. We describe selected applications that analyse the physics of communication and use energy efficiency as a central tenet. Whilst communication theory has and could contribute to understanding a myriad of problems in biology, investigations of multicellular biology

  18. The Microbiome and Human Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knight, Rob; Callewaert, Chris; Marotz, Clarisse; Hyde, Embriette R; Debelius, Justine W; McDonald, Daniel; Sogin, Mitchell L

    2017-08-31

    Over the past few years, microbiome research has dramatically reshaped our understanding of human biology. New insights range from an enhanced understanding of how microbes mediate digestion and disease processes (e.g., in inflammatory bowel disease) to surprising associations with Parkinson's disease, autism, and depression. In this review, we describe how new generations of sequencing technology, analytical advances coupled to new software capabilities, and the integration of animal model data have led to these new discoveries. We also discuss the prospects for integrating studies of the microbiome, metabolome, and immune system, with the goal of elucidating mechanisms that govern their interactions. This systems-level understanding will change how we think about ourselves as organisms.

  19. Biological darkening of ice: measurements and models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, J.; Tedstone, A.; Hodson, A. J.; Williamson, C.; McCutcheon, J.; Tranter, M.

    2017-12-01

    Biological growth occurs in the ablation zones of glaciers and ice sheets, resulting in a reduction of the ice albedo. Given the critical role of albedo in determining the surface energy balance - and therefore melt rate - of a mass of ice, understanding and quantifying biological albedo reduction is fundamental to predicting future ice dynamics. This may be particularly important on ablating ice on the western Greenland Ice Sheet, where a `dark ice zone' of varying spatial extent may be partly or mostly explained by biological growth. However, our ability to quantify and predict the contribution of biological impurities to the overall energy balance of glacial systems is currently limited by a lack of understanding of the mechanisms of biological darkening, difficulties in determining the spatial extent of biological impurities and uncertainty in isolating biological from non-biological albedo reduction. Here, new spectral measurements are presented for ice containing varying amounts of biological impurities which were obtained on the ground using a field spectrometer and from the air using a purpose built UAV on the Greenland Ice Sheet in summer 2016 and 2017. Distinctive spectral signatures are identified and used to map the spatial extent of algal blooms on the ice surface. A new radiative transfer scheme (BioSNICAR) for predicting the albedo of snow or ice discolored by microbial life is also described, offering insight into the mechanisms of biological darkening. Together, these demonstrate the critical role played by pigmented algae in darkening ice surfaces and provide a framework for predicting biological albedo reduction in future climate scenarios.

  20. Advancing metabolic engineering through systems biology of industrial microorganisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dai, Zongjie; Nielsen, Jens

    2015-01-01

    resources. The objective of systems biology is to gain a comprehensive and quantitative understanding of living cells and can hereby enhance our ability to characterize and predict cellular behavior. Systems biology of industrial microorganisms is therefore valuable for metabolic engineering. Here we review...... the application of systems biology tools for the identification of metabolic engineering targets which may lead to reduced development time for efficient cell factories. Finally, we present some perspectives of systems biology for advancing metabolic engineering further....

  1. Emergent mechanics of biological structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumont, Sophie; Prakash, Manu

    2014-01-01

    Mechanical force organizes life at all scales, from molecules to cells and tissues. Although we have made remarkable progress unraveling the mechanics of life's individual building blocks, our understanding of how they give rise to the mechanics of larger-scale biological structures is still poor. Unlike the engineered macroscopic structures that we commonly build, biological structures are dynamic and self-organize: they sculpt themselves and change their own architecture, and they have structural building blocks that generate force and constantly come on and off. A description of such structures defies current traditional mechanical frameworks. It requires approaches that account for active force-generating parts and for the formation of spatial and temporal patterns utilizing a diverse array of building blocks. In this Perspective, we term this framework “emergent mechanics.” Through examples at molecular, cellular, and tissue scales, we highlight challenges and opportunities in quantitatively understanding the emergent mechanics of biological structures and the need for new conceptual frameworks and experimental tools on the way ahead. PMID:25368421

  2. Evolutionary Biology Needs Wild Microbiomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hird, Sarah M

    2017-01-01

    The microbiome is a vital component to the evolution of a host and much of what we know about the microbiome derives from studies on humans and captive animals. But captivity alters the microbiome and mammals have unique biological adaptations that affect their microbiomes (e.g., milk). Birds represent over 30% of known tetrapod diversity and possess their own suite of adaptations relevant to the microbiome. In a previous study, we showed that 59 species of birds displayed immense variation in their microbiomes and host (bird) taxonomy and ecology were most correlated with the gut microbiome. In this Frontiers Focused Review, I put those results in a broader context by discussing how collecting and analyzing wild microbiomes contributes to the main goals of evolutionary biology and the specific ways that birds are unique microbial hosts. Finally, I outline some of the methodological considerations for adding microbiome sampling to the research of wild animals and urge researchers to do so. To truly understand the evolution of a host, we need to understand the millions of microorganisms that inhabit it as well: evolutionary biology needs wild microbiomes.

  3. Advances in Biological Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oppenheimer, Steven B.; And Others

    1988-01-01

    Reviews major developments in areas that are at the cutting edge of biological research. Areas include: human anti-cancer gene, recombinant DNA techniques for the detection of Huntington disease carriers, and marine biology. (CW)

  4. Biological basis of detoxication

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Caldwell, John; Jakoby, William B

    1983-01-01

    This volume considers that premise that most of the major patterns of biological conversion of foreign compounds are known and may have predictive value in assessing the biological course for novel compounds...

  5. Biology of Blood

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... switch to the Professional version Home Blood Disorders Biology of Blood Overview of Blood Resources In This ... Version. DOCTORS: Click here for the Professional Version Biology of Blood Overview of Blood Components of Blood ...

  6. Physical mechanisms of biological molecular motors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miller, John H. Jr.; Vajrala, Vijayanand; Infante, Hans L.; Claycomb, James R.; Palanisami, Akilan; Fang Jie; Mercier, George T.

    2009-01-01

    Biological motors generally fall into two categories: (1) those that convert chemical into mechanical energy via hydrolysis of a nucleoside triphosphate, usually adenosine triphosphate, regarded as life's chemical currency of energy and (2) membrane bound motors driven directly by an ion gradient and/or membrane potential. Here we argue that electrostatic interactions play a vital role for both types of motors and, therefore, the tools of physics can greatly contribute to understanding biological motors

  7. Understanding Prenatal Tests

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Navigation Bar Home Current Issue Past Issues Understanding Prenatal Tests Past Issues / Winter 2008 Table of Contents ... be done before pregnancy or at the first prenatal visit. If there is Rh incompatibility, treatments can ...

  8. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Reporting & Auditing Grant Transfer Grant Closeout Contracts & Small Business Training Cancer Training at NCI (Intramural) Funding for ... disease will go for you is called prognosis. It can be hard to understand what prognosis means ...

  9. Understanding health insurance plans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000879.htm Understanding health insurance plans To use the sharing features on this ... for you and your family. Types of Health Insurance Plans Depending on how you get your health ...

  10. Thermometers: Understand the Options

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... the options Thermometers come in a variety of styles. Understand the different types of thermometers and how ... MA. Fever in infants and children: Pathophysiology and management. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed July 23, ...

  11. Understanding cardiovascular disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000759.htm Understanding cardiovascular disease To use the sharing features on this page, ... lead to heart attack or stroke. Types of Cardiovascular Disease Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the most common ...

  12. Tinnitus: Understanding the Facts

    Science.gov (United States)

    American Tinnitus Association Donate Become A Member Member Login Find A Provider Search form Search Menu Close Understanding The Facts Managing Your Tinnitus Research Toward A Cure About Us Initiatives News & ...

  13. Economics and International Understanding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chandra, Ramesh

    1983-01-01

    A methodology linking the teaching of economics to the promotion of international understanding is discussed. The content of a course dealing with the new international economic order is examined. (Author/RM)

  14. Understanding the New Economy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrell, Louis R.

    2001-01-01

    Asserts that while the Nasdaq bubble did burst, the new economy is real and that failure to understand the rules of the digital economy can lead to substandard investment portfolio performance. Offers guidelines for higher education institutional investors. (EV)

  15. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... side effects from the cancer treatments you received. Video Series This video series offers the perspectives of ... care teams (PDF-210KB). Understanding Your Cancer Prognosis Video View this video on YouTube. Three cancer patients ...

  16. Understanding the DASH diet

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000784.htm Understanding the DASH diet To use the sharing features on this page, please enable JavaScript. The DASH diet is low in salt and rich in fruits, ...

  17. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Managing Cancer Care Finding Health Care Services Costs & Medical Information Advance Directives Using Trusted Resources Understanding Cancer ... Care Finding Health Care Services Managing Costs and Medical Information Advance Directives Using Trusted Resources Cancer Types ...

  18. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Care Finding Health Care Services Costs & Medical Information Advance Directives Using Trusted Resources Understanding Cancer What Is ... Health Care Services Managing Costs and Medical Information Advance Directives Using Trusted Resources Cancer Types Adolescents and ...

  19. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Research Managing Cancer Care Finding Health Care Services Costs & Medical Information Advance Directives Using Trusted Resources Understanding ... Managing Cancer Care Finding Health Care Services Managing Costs and Medical Information Advance Directives Using Trusted Resources ...

  20. Understanding the Opioid Epidemic

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Search Form Controls Cancel Submit Search The CDC Opioid Overdose Note: Javascript is disabled or is not ... message, please visit this page: About CDC.gov . Opioid Overdose Opioid Basics Understanding the Epidemic Commonly Used ...

  1. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... doctor to give you an accurate prognosis. Understanding the Difference Between Cure and Remission Cure means that ... about her colorectal cancer prognosis. Diving Out of the Dark View this video on YouTube. Andrew wants ...

  2. Understanding your hospital bill

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... medlineplus.gov/ency/patientinstructions/000881.htm Understanding your hospital bill To use the sharing features on this ... help you save money. Charges Listed on Your Hospital Bill A hospital bill will list the major ...

  3. Understanding Blood Pressure Readings

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Artery Disease Venous Thromboembolism Aortic Aneurysm More Understanding Blood Pressure Readings Updated:Feb 19,2018 What do your ... this chart: English | Spanish | Traditional Chinese Enter Your Blood Pressure Systolic mm Hg (upper #) Diastolic mm Hg (lower #) ...

  4. Biological Races in Humans

    OpenAIRE

    Templeton, Alan R.

    2013-01-01

    Races may exist in humans in a cultural sense, but biological concepts of race are needed to access their reality in a non-species-specific manner and to see if cultural categories correspond to biological categories within humans. Modern biological concepts of race can be implemented objectively with molecular genetic data through hypothesis-testing. Genetic data sets are used to see if biological races exist in humans and in our closest evolutionary relative, the chimpanzee. Using the two m...

  5. Biological Age Predictors

    OpenAIRE

    Jylh?v?, Juulia; Pedersen, Nancy L.; H?gg, Sara

    2017-01-01

    The search for reliable indicators of biological age, rather than chronological age, has been ongoing for over three decades, and until recently, largely without success. Advances in the fields of molecular biology have increased the variety of potential candidate biomarkers that may be considered as biological age predictors. In this review, we summarize current state-of-the-art findings considering six potential types of biological age predictors: epigenetic clocks, telomere length, transcr...

  6. Understanding Conflict?...Maybe!

    OpenAIRE

    Anthony P. Johnson

    2008-01-01

    The premise of this paper is the study in the field of conflict andconflict resolution and that conflict and conflict resolution are usefulareas of focus in order to better understand human behavior. Additionally,I will present data that will highlight the notion that conflict is not in itselfa bad thing and that conflict has the capability to be utilized as a vehiclefor understanding the many contradictions that are necessarily present inour efforts to be social beings.

  7. Understanding Family Diversity

    OpenAIRE

    Knowles, G

    2012-01-01

    This essential text will help students and those already working with children to understand both theoretically and practically, what may constitute a ‘family’. It explores how to build relationships with a child’s family to ensure early years settings and schools are working in partnership with children’s home environments, thereby supporting the best possible learning outcomes for children. It will help the reader to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding of their professional pr...

  8. Evolutionary cell biology: two origins, one objective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, Michael; Field, Mark C; Goodson, Holly V; Malik, Harmit S; Pereira-Leal, José B; Roos, David S; Turkewitz, Aaron P; Sazer, Shelley

    2014-12-02

    All aspects of biological diversification ultimately trace to evolutionary modifications at the cellular level. This central role of cells frames the basic questions as to how cells work and how cells come to be the way they are. Although these two lines of inquiry lie respectively within the traditional provenance of cell biology and evolutionary biology, a comprehensive synthesis of evolutionary and cell-biological thinking is lacking. We define evolutionary cell biology as the fusion of these two eponymous fields with the theoretical and quantitative branches of biochemistry, biophysics, and population genetics. The key goals are to develop a mechanistic understanding of general evolutionary processes, while specifically infusing cell biology with an evolutionary perspective. The full development of this interdisciplinary field has the potential to solve numerous problems in diverse areas of biology, including the degree to which selection, effectively neutral processes, historical contingencies, and/or constraints at the chemical and biophysical levels dictate patterns of variation for intracellular features. These problems can now be examined at both the within- and among-species levels, with single-cell methodologies even allowing quantification of variation within genotypes. Some results from this emerging field have already had a substantial impact on cell biology, and future findings will significantly influence applications in agriculture, medicine, environmental science, and synthetic biology.

  9. Information Literacy in Biology Education: An Example from an Advanced Cell Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porter, John R.

    2005-01-01

    Information literacy skills are critically important for the undergraduate biology student. The ability to find, understand, evaluate, and use information, whether from the scientific literature or from Web resources, is essential for a good understanding of a topic and for the conduct of research. A project in which students receive information…

  10. Education science and biological anthropology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krebs, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    This contribution states deficits and makes proposals in order to overcome them. First there is the question as to why the Biological Anthropology--despite all its diversifications--hardly ever deals with educational aspects of its subject. Second it is the question as to why Educational Science neglects or even ignores data of Biological Anthropology which are recognizably important for its subject. It is postulated that the stated deficits are caused by several adverse influences such as, the individual identity of each of the involved single sciences; aspects of the recent history of the German Anthropology; a lack of conceptual understanding of each other; methodological differences and, last but not least, the structure of the universities. The necessity to remedy this situation was deduced from two groups of facts. First, more recent data of the Biological Anthropology (e.g. brain functions and learning, sex specificity and education) are of substantial relevance for the Educational Science. Second, the epistemological requirements of complex subjects like education need interdisciplinary approaches. Finally, a few suggestions of concrete topics are given which are related to both, Educational Science and Biological Anthropology.

  11. Biological Water or Rather Water in Biology?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jungwirth, Pavel

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 6, č. 13 (2015), s. 2449-2451 ISSN 1948-7185 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : biological water * protein * interface Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry Impact factor: 8.539, year: 2015

  12. Molecular biology of potyviruses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Revers, Frédéric; García, Juan Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Potyvirus is the largest genus of plant viruses causing significant losses in a wide range of crops. Potyviruses are aphid transmitted in a nonpersistent manner and some of them are also seed transmitted. As important pathogens, potyviruses are much more studied than other plant viruses belonging to other genera and their study covers many aspects of plant virology, such as functional characterization of viral proteins, molecular interaction with hosts and vectors, structure, taxonomy, evolution, epidemiology, and diagnosis. Biotechnological applications of potyviruses are also being explored. During this last decade, substantial advances have been made in the understanding of the molecular biology of these viruses and the functions of their various proteins. After a general presentation on the family Potyviridae and the potyviral proteins, we present an update of the knowledge on potyvirus multiplication, movement, and transmission and on potyvirus/plant compatible interactions including pathogenicity and symptom determinants. We end the review providing information on biotechnological applications of potyviruses. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Evolutionary Biology Today

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Evolutionary Biology Today - The Domain of Evolutionary Biology ... Keywords. Evolution; natural selection; biodiversity; fitness; adaptation. Author Affiliations. Amitabh Joshi1. Evolutionary and Organismal Biology Unit Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research P.Box 6436, Jakkur Bangalore 560 065, India.

  14. Biology Myth-Killers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lampert, Evan

    2014-01-01

    "Biology Myth-Killers" is an activity designed to identify and correct common misconceptions for high school and college introductory biology courses. Students identify common myths, which double as biology misconceptions, and use appropriate sources to share the "truth" about the myths. This learner-centered activity is a fun…

  15. Designing synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agapakis, Christina M

    2014-03-21

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

  16. Biological Therapies for Cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Page What is biological therapy? What is the immune system and what role does it have in biological therapy for cancer? ... trials (research studies involving people). What is the immune system and what role does it have in biological therapy for cancer? ...

  17. Carbon-13 NMR spectroscopy of biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Beckmann, Nicolau

    1995-01-01

    This book is intended to provide an in-depth understanding of 13C NMR as a tool in biological research. 13C NMR has provided unique information concerning complex biological systems, from proteins and nucleic acids to animals and humans. The subjects addressed include multidimensional heteronuclear techniques for structural studies of molecules in the liquid and solid states, the investigation of interactions in model membranes, the elucidation of metabolic pathwaysin vitro and in vivo on animals, and noninvasive metabolic studies performed on humans. The book is a unique mix of NMR methods and biological applications which makes it a convenient reference for those interested in research in this interdisciplinary area of physics, chemistry, biology, and medicine.Key Features* An interdisciplinary text with emphasis on both 13C NMR methodology and the relevant biological and biomedical issues* State-of-the-art 13C NMR techniques are described; Whenever possible, their advantages over other approaches are empha...

  18. Systems biology in critical-care nursing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schallom, Lynn; Thimmesch, Amanda R; Pierce, Janet D

    2011-01-01

    Systems biology applies advances in technology and new fields of study including genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics to the development of new treatments and approaches of care for the critically ill and injured patient. An understanding of systems biology enhances a nurse's ability to implement evidence-based practice and to educate patients and families on novel testing and therapies. Systems biology is an integrated and holistic view of humans in relationship with the environment. Biomarkers are used to measure the presence and severity of disease and are rapidly expanding in systems biology endeavors. A systems biology approach using predictive, preventive, and participatory involvement is being utilized in a plethora of conditions of critical illness and injury including sepsis, cancer, pulmonary disease, and traumatic injuries.

  19. Plant systems biology: insights, advances and challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheth, Bhavisha P; Thaker, Vrinda S

    2014-07-01

    Plants dwelling at the base of biological food chain are of fundamental significance in providing solutions to some of the most daunting ecological and environmental problems faced by our planet. The reductionist views of molecular biology provide only a partial understanding to the phenotypic knowledge of plants. Systems biology offers a comprehensive view of plant systems, by employing a holistic approach integrating the molecular data at various hierarchical levels. In this review, we discuss the basics of systems biology including the various 'omics' approaches and their integration, the modeling aspects and the tools needed for the plant systems research. A particular emphasis is given to the recent analytical advances, updated published examples of plant systems biology studies and the future trends.

  20. Chemically induced proximity in biology and medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stanton, Benjamin Z; Chory, Emma J; Crabtree, Gerald R

    2018-03-09

    Proximity, or the physical closeness of molecules, is a pervasive regulatory mechanism in biology. For example, most posttranslational modifications such as phosphorylation, methylation, and acetylation promote proximity of molecules to play deterministic roles in cellular processes. To understand the role of proximity in biologic mechanisms, chemical inducers of proximity (CIPs) were developed to synthetically model biologically regulated recruitment. Chemically induced proximity allows for precise temporal control of transcription, signaling cascades, chromatin regulation, protein folding, localization, and degradation, as well as a host of other biologic processes. A systematic analysis of CIPs in basic research, coupled with recent technological advances utilizing CRISPR, distinguishes roles of causality from coincidence and allows for mathematical modeling in synthetic biology. Recently, induced proximity has provided new avenues of gene therapy and emerging advances in cancer treatment. Copyright © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  1. Mammalian synthetic biology for studying the cell.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathur, Melina; Xiang, Joy S; Smolke, Christina D

    2017-01-02

    Synthetic biology is advancing the design of genetic devices that enable the study of cellular and molecular biology in mammalian cells. These genetic devices use diverse regulatory mechanisms to both examine cellular processes and achieve precise and dynamic control of cellular phenotype. Synthetic biology tools provide novel functionality to complement the examination of natural cell systems, including engineered molecules with specific activities and model systems that mimic complex regulatory processes. Continued development of quantitative standards and computational tools will expand capacities to probe cellular mechanisms with genetic devices to achieve a more comprehensive understanding of the cell. In this study, we review synthetic biology tools that are being applied to effectively investigate diverse cellular processes, regulatory networks, and multicellular interactions. We also discuss current challenges and future developments in the field that may transform the types of investigation possible in cell biology. © 2017 Mathur et al.

  2. Positioning Genomics in Biology Education: Content Mapping of Undergraduate Biology Textbooks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naomi L. B. Wernick

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Biological thought increasingly recognizes the centrality of the genome in constituting and regulating processes ranging from cellular systems to ecology and evolution. In this paper, we ask whether genomics is similarly positioned as a core concept in the instructional sequence for undergraduate biology. Using quantitative methods, we analyzed the order in which core biological concepts were introduced in textbooks for first-year general and human biology. Statistical analysis was performed using self-organizing map algorithms and conventional methods to identify clusters of terms and their relative position in the books. General biology textbooks for both majors and nonmajors introduced genome-related content after text related to cell biology and biological chemistry, but before content describing higher-order biological processes. However, human biology textbooks most often introduced genomic content near the end of the books. These results suggest that genomics is not yet positioned as a core concept in commonly used textbooks for first-year biology and raises questions about whether such textbooks, or courses based on the outline of these textbooks, provide an appropriate foundation for understanding contemporary biological science.

  3. Understanding Overeating and Obesity

    OpenAIRE

    Christopher J. Ruhm

    2010-01-01

    The combination of economic and biological factors is likely to result in overeating, in the current environment of cheap and readily available food. This propensity is shown using a "dual-decision" approach where choices reflect the interaction between two parts of the brain: a "deliberative" system, operating as in standard economic models, and an "affective" system that responds rapidly to stimuli without considering long-term consequences. This framework is characterized by excess food co...

  4. The Biology of Neisseria Adhesins

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miao-Chiu Hung

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Members of the genus Neisseria include pathogens causing important human diseases such as meningitis, septicaemia, gonorrhoea and pelvic inflammatory disease syndrome. Neisseriae are found on the exposed epithelia of the upper respiratory tract and the urogenital tract. Colonisation of these exposed epithelia is dependent on a repertoire of diverse bacterial molecules, extending not only from the surface of the bacteria but also found within the outer membrane. During invasive disease, pathogenic Neisseriae also interact with immune effector cells, vascular endothelia and the meninges. Neisseria adhesion involves the interplay of these multiple surface factors and in this review we discuss the structure and function of these important molecules and the nature of the host cell receptors and mechanisms involved in their recognition. We also describe the current status for recently identified Neisseria adhesins. Understanding the biology of Neisseria adhesins has an impact not only on the development of new vaccines but also in revealing fundamental knowledge about human biology.

  5. Carbon nanomaterials in biological systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pu Chun Ke [Laboratory of Single-Molecule Biophysics and Polymer Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634 (United States); Qiao Rui [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634 (United States)

    2007-09-19

    This paper intends to reflect, from the biophysical viewpoint, our current understanding on interfacing nanomaterials, such as carbon nanotubes and fullerenes, with biological systems. Strategies for improving the solubility, and therefore, the bioavailability of nanomaterials in aqueous solutions are summarized. In particular, the underlining mechanisms of attaching biomacromolecules (DNA, RNA, proteins) and lysophospholipids onto carbon nanotubes and gallic acids onto fullerenes are analyzed. The diffusion and the cellular delivery of RNA-coated carbon nanotubes are characterized using fluorescence microscopy. The translocation of fullerenes across cell membranes is simulated using molecular dynamics to offer new insight into the complex issue of nanotoxicity. To assess the fate of nanomaterials in the environment, the biomodification of lipid-coated carbon nanotubes by the aquatic organism Daphnia magna is discussed. The aim of this paper is to illuminate the need for adopting multidisciplinary approaches in the field study of nanomaterials in biological systems and in the environment. (topical review)

  6. Carbon nanomaterials in biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pu Chun Ke; Qiao Rui

    2007-01-01

    This paper intends to reflect, from the biophysical viewpoint, our current understanding on interfacing nanomaterials, such as carbon nanotubes and fullerenes, with biological systems. Strategies for improving the solubility, and therefore, the bioavailability of nanomaterials in aqueous solutions are summarized. In particular, the underlining mechanisms of attaching biomacromolecules (DNA, RNA, proteins) and lysophospholipids onto carbon nanotubes and gallic acids onto fullerenes are analyzed. The diffusion and the cellular delivery of RNA-coated carbon nanotubes are characterized using fluorescence microscopy. The translocation of fullerenes across cell membranes is simulated using molecular dynamics to offer new insight into the complex issue of nanotoxicity. To assess the fate of nanomaterials in the environment, the biomodification of lipid-coated carbon nanotubes by the aquatic organism Daphnia magna is discussed. The aim of this paper is to illuminate the need for adopting multidisciplinary approaches in the field study of nanomaterials in biological systems and in the environment. (topical review)

  7. Biomaterial science meets computational biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutmacher, Dietmar W; Little, J Paige; Pettet, Graeme J; Loessner, Daniela

    2015-05-01

    There is a pressing need for a predictive tool capable of revealing a holistic understanding of fundamental elements in the normal and pathological cell physiology of organoids in order to decipher the mechanoresponse of cells. Therefore, the integration of a systems bioengineering approach into a validated mathematical model is necessary to develop a new simulation tool. This tool can only be innovative by combining biomaterials science with computational biology. Systems-level and multi-scale experimental data are incorporated into a single framework, thus representing both single cells and collective cell behaviour. Such a computational platform needs to be validated in order to discover key mechano-biological factors associated with cell-cell and cell-niche interactions.

  8. Synthetic biological networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Archer, Eric; Süel, Gürol M

    2013-01-01

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

  9. Biological Control in Agroecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batra, Suzanne W. T.

    1982-01-01

    Living organisms are used as biological pest control agents in (i) classical biological control, primarily for permanent control of introduced perennial weed pests or introduced pests of perennial crops; (ii) augmentative biological control, for temporary control of native or introduced pests of annual crops grown in monoculture; and (iii) conservative or natural control, in which the agroecosystem is managed to maximize the effect of native or introduced biological control agents. The effectiveness of biological control can be improved if it is based on adequate ecological information and theory, and if it is integrated with other pest management practices.

  10. Quantum biological information theory

    CERN Document Server

    Djordjevic, Ivan B

    2016-01-01

    This book is a self-contained, tutorial-based introduction to quantum information theory and quantum biology. It serves as a single-source reference to the topic for researchers in bioengineering, communications engineering, electrical engineering, applied mathematics, biology, computer science, and physics. The book provides all the essential principles of the quantum biological information theory required to describe the quantum information transfer from DNA to proteins, the sources of genetic noise and genetic errors as well as their effects. Integrates quantum information and quantum biology concepts; Assumes only knowledge of basic concepts of vector algebra at undergraduate level; Provides a thorough introduction to basic concepts of quantum information processing, quantum information theory, and quantum biology; Includes in-depth discussion of the quantum biological channel modelling, quantum biological channel capacity calculation, quantum models of aging, quantum models of evolution, quantum models o...

  11. Understanding Sex for Sale

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    This book Understanding Sex for Sale: Meanings and Moralities of Sexual Commerce is dedicated to the exploration of the ways in which sex prostitution, sex work or sex for sale are taken for granted by particularly looking at how the relation between sex and money is interpreted and enacted....... This interdisciplinary book aims to understand how prostitution, sex work or sex for sale are defined, delineated, contested and understood in different places and times. The book offers contributions from a number of scholars who, based on their on their own research, discuss on going theoretical issues and analytical...... challenges Some chapters focuses on how prostitution, sex work or sex for sale have been regulated by the authorities and what understandings this regulation builds on. Other chapters investigate the experiences of the sex workers and sex buyers asking how these actors adjust to or resist the categorisation...

  12. Adapting to Biology: Maintaining Container-Closure System Compatibility with the Therapeutic Biologic Revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Degrazio, Dominick

    Many pharmaceutical companies are transitioning their research and development drug product pipeline from traditional small-molecule injectables to the dimension of evolving therapeutic biologics. Important concerns associated with this changeover are becoming forefront, as challenges develop of varying complexity uncommon with the synthesis and production of traditional drugs. Therefore, alternative measures must be established that aim to preserve the efficacy and functionality of a biologic that might not be implemented for small molecules. Conserving protein stability is relative to perpetuating a net equilibrium of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Key to sustaining this balance is the ability of container-closure systems to maintain their compatibility with the ever-changing dynamics of therapeutic biologics. Failure to recognize and adjust the material properties of packaging components to support compatibility with therapeutic biologics can compromise patient safety, drug productivity, and biological stability. This review will examine the differences between small-molecule drugs and therapeutic biologics, lay a basic foundation for understanding the stability of therapeutic biologics, and demonstrate potential sources of container-closure systems' incompatibilities with therapeutic biologics at a mechanistic level. Many pharmaceutical companies are transitioning their research and development drug product pipeline from traditional small-molecule injectables to recombinantly derived therapeutic biologics. Concerns associated with this transformation are becoming prominent, as therapeutic biologics are uncharacteristic to small-molecule drugs. Maintaining the stability of a therapeutic biologic is a combination of balancing intrinsic factors and external elements within the biologic's microenvironment. An important aspect of this balance is relegated to the overall compatibility of primary, parenteral container-closure systems with therapeutic biologics

  13. Discovery of Chemical Toxicity via Biological Networks and Systems Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perkins, Edward; Habib, Tanwir; Guan, Xin; Escalon, Barbara; Falciani, Francesco; Chipman, J.K.; Antczak, Philipp; Edwards, Stephen; Taylor, Ronald C.; Vulpe, Chris; Loguinov, Alexandre; Van Aggelen, Graham; Villeneuve, Daniel L.; Garcia-Reyero, Natalia

    2010-09-30

    Both soldiers and animals are exposed to many chemicals as the result of military activities. Tools are needed to understand the hazards and risks that chemicals and new materials pose to soldiers and the environment. We have investigated the potential of global gene regulatory networks in understanding the impact of chemicals on reproduction. We characterized effects of chemicals on ovaries of the model animal system, the Fathead minnow (Pimopheles promelas) connecting chemical impacts on gene expression to circulating blood levels of the hormones testosterone and estradiol in addition to the egg yolk protein vitellogenin. We describe the application of reverse engineering complex interaction networks from high dimensional gene expression data to characterize chemicals that disrupt the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal endocrine axis that governs reproduction in fathead minnows. The construction of global gene regulatory networks provides deep insights into how drugs and chemicals effect key organs and biological pathways.

  14. Porphyrin Binding to Gun4 Protein, Facilitated by a Flexible Loop, Controls Metabolite Flow through the Chlorophyll Biosynthetic Pathway

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kopečná, Jana; de Vaca, C.; Adams, N.P.B.; Davison, P.A.; Brindley, A.; Hunter, C. N.; Guallar, V.; Sobotka, Roman

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 290, č. 47 (2015), s. 28477-28488 ISSN 0021-9258 R&D Projects: GA ČR GBP501/12/G055; GA MŠk LO1416; GA MŠk EE2.3.30.0059 Institutional support: RVO:61388971 Keywords : MAGNESIUM CHELATASE * TETRAPYRROLE BIOSYNTHESIS * MG-CHELATASE Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 4.258, year: 2015

  15. Understanding pastoral mobility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adriansen, Hanne Kirstine

    2008-01-01

    Based on a case study from Sahelian Senegal, this paper analyses how various actors perceive the importance of pastoral mobility and presents issues of importance for understanding the use of mobility among Fulani of Ferlo. One knowledge system is a scientific one, the 'new rangeland paradigm...... territory, which they consider their place, but are unwilling to employ large-scale mobility themselves. Mobility is not of importance for their ethnic identity and some use paid herders to care for their livestock. By looking at both knowledge systems, we achieve a better understanding of pastoral mobility...

  16. Understanding Digital Learning from the Perspective of Systems Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kok, Ayse

    2009-01-01

    The System Dynamics approach can be seen as a new way of understanding dynamical phenonema (natural, physical, biological, etc.) that occur in our daily lives taking into consideration not only single pairs of cause-effect variables, but the functioning of the system as a whole. This approach also provides the students with a new understanding in…

  17. Understanding human action: integrating meanings, mechanisms, causes, and contexts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keestra, M.; Repko, A.F.; Newell, W.H.; Szostak, R.

    2012-01-01

    Humans are capable of understanding an incredible variety of actions performed by other humans. Even though these range from primary biological actions like eating and fleeing, to acts in parliament or in poetry, humans generally can make sense of each other’s actions. Understanding other people’s

  18. Soil and terrestrial biology studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1976-01-01

    Soil and terrestrial biology studies focused on developing an understanding of the uptake of gaseous substances from the atmosphere by plants, biodegradation of oil, and the movement of Pu in the terrestrial ecosystems of the southeastern United States. Mathematical models were developed for SO 2 and tritium uptake from the atmosphere by plants; the uptake of tritium by soil microorganisms was measured; and the relationships among the Pu content of soil, plants, and animals of the Savannah River Plant area were studied. Preliminary results are reported for studies on the biodegradation of waste oil on soil surfaces

  19. A framework for evolutionary systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loewe, Laurence

    2009-02-24

    Many difficult problems in evolutionary genomics are related to mutations that have weak effects on fitness, as the consequences of mutations with large effects are often simple to predict. Current systems biology has accumulated much data on mutations with large effects and can predict the properties of knockout mutants in some systems. However experimental methods are too insensitive to observe small effects. Here I propose a novel framework that brings together evolutionary theory and current systems biology approaches in order to quantify small effects of mutations and their epistatic interactions in silico. Central to this approach is the definition of fitness correlates that can be computed in some current systems biology models employing the rigorous algorithms that are at the core of much work in computational systems biology. The framework exploits synergies between the realism of such models and the need to understand real systems in evolutionary theory. This framework can address many longstanding topics in evolutionary biology by defining various 'levels' of the adaptive landscape. Addressed topics include the distribution of mutational effects on fitness, as well as the nature of advantageous mutations, epistasis and robustness. Combining corresponding parameter estimates with population genetics models raises the possibility of testing evolutionary hypotheses at a new level of realism. EvoSysBio is expected to lead to a more detailed understanding of the fundamental principles of life by combining knowledge about well-known biological systems from several disciplines. This will benefit both evolutionary theory and current systems biology. Understanding robustness by analysing distributions of mutational effects and epistasis is pivotal for drug design, cancer research, responsible genetic engineering in synthetic biology and many other practical applications.

  20. Quantum metrology and its application in biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taylor, Michael A. [Centre for Engineered Quantum Systems, University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland 4072 (Australia); Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP), Max F. Perutz Laboratories & Research Platform for Quantum Phenomena and Nanoscale Biological Systems (QuNaBioS), University of Vienna, Dr. Bohr Gasse 7-9, A-1030 Vienna (Austria); Bowen, Warwick P., E-mail: w.bowen@uq.edu.au [Centre for Engineered Quantum Systems, University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland 4072 (Australia)

    2016-02-23

    Quantum metrology provides a route to overcome practical limits in sensing devices. It holds particular relevance to biology, where sensitivity and resolution constraints restrict applications both in fundamental biophysics and in medicine. Here, we review quantum metrology from this biological context, focusing on optical techniques due to their particular relevance for biological imaging, sensing, and stimulation. Our understanding of quantum mechanics has already enabled important applications in biology, including positron emission tomography (PET) with entangled photons, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) using nuclear magnetic resonance, and bio-magnetic imaging with superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs). In quantum metrology an even greater range of applications arise from the ability to not just understand, but to engineer, coherence and correlations at the quantum level. In the past few years, quite dramatic progress has been seen in applying these ideas into biological systems. Capabilities that have been demonstrated include enhanced sensitivity and resolution, immunity to imaging artefacts and technical noise, and characterization of the biological response to light at the single-photon level. New quantum measurement techniques offer even greater promise, raising the prospect for improved multi-photon microscopy and magnetic imaging, among many other possible applications. Realization of this potential will require cross-disciplinary input from researchers in both biology and quantum physics. In this review we seek to communicate the developments of quantum metrology in a way that is accessible to biologists and biophysicists, while providing sufficient details to allow the interested reader to obtain a solid understanding of the field. We further seek to introduce quantum physicists to some of the central challenges of optical measurements in biological science. We hope that this will aid in bridging the communication gap that exists

  1. Quantum metrology and its application in biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Michael A.; Bowen, Warwick P.

    2016-02-01

    Quantum metrology provides a route to overcome practical limits in sensing devices. It holds particular relevance to biology, where sensitivity and resolution constraints restrict applications both in fundamental biophysics and in medicine. Here, we review quantum metrology from this biological context, focusing on optical techniques due to their particular relevance for biological imaging, sensing, and stimulation. Our understanding of quantum mechanics has already enabled important applications in biology, including positron emission tomography (PET) with entangled photons, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) using nuclear magnetic resonance, and bio-magnetic imaging with superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs). In quantum metrology an even greater range of applications arise from the ability to not just understand, but to engineer, coherence and correlations at the quantum level. In the past few years, quite dramatic progress has been seen in applying these ideas into biological systems. Capabilities that have been demonstrated include enhanced sensitivity and resolution, immunity to imaging artefacts and technical noise, and characterization of the biological response to light at the single-photon level. New quantum measurement techniques offer even greater promise, raising the prospect for improved multi-photon microscopy and magnetic imaging, among many other possible applications. Realization of this potential will require cross-disciplinary input from researchers in both biology and quantum physics. In this review we seek to communicate the developments of quantum metrology in a way that is accessible to biologists and biophysicists, while providing sufficient details to allow the interested reader to obtain a solid understanding of the field. We further seek to introduce quantum physicists to some of the central challenges of optical measurements in biological science. We hope that this will aid in bridging the communication gap that exists

  2. A first attempt to bring computational biology into advanced high school biology classrooms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallagher, Suzanne Renick; Coon, William; Donley, Kristin; Scott, Abby; Goldberg, Debra S

    2011-10-01

    Computer science has become ubiquitous in many areas of biological research, yet most high school and even college students are unaware of this. As a result, many college biology majors graduate without adequate computational skills for contemporary fields of biology. The absence of a computational element in secondary school biology classrooms is of growing concern to the computational biology community and biology teachers who would like to acquaint their students with updated approaches in the discipline. We present a first attempt to correct this absence by introducing a computational biology element to teach genetic evolution into advanced biology classes in two local high schools. Our primary goal was to show students how computation is used in biology and why a basic understanding of computation is necessary for research in many fields of biology. This curriculum is intended to be taught by a computational biologist who has worked with a high school advanced biology teacher to adapt the unit for his/her classroom, but a motivated high school teacher comfortable with mathematics and computing may be able to teach this alone. In this paper, we present our curriculum, which takes into consideration the constraints of the required curriculum, and discuss our experiences teaching it. We describe the successes and challenges we encountered while bringing this unit to high school students, discuss how we addressed these challenges, and make suggestions for future versions of this curriculum.We believe that our curriculum can be a valuable seed for further development of computational activities aimed at high school biology students. Further, our experiences may be of value to others teaching computational biology at this level. Our curriculum can be obtained at http://ecsite.cs.colorado.edu/?page_id=149#biology or by contacting the authors.

  3. Standard biological parts knowledgebase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galdzicki, Michal; Rodriguez, Cesar; Chandran, Deepak; Sauro, Herbert M; Gennari, John H

    2011-02-24

    We have created the Knowledgebase of Standard Biological Parts (SBPkb) as a publically accessible Semantic Web resource for synthetic biology (sbolstandard.org). The SBPkb allows researchers to query and retrieve standard biological parts for research and use in synthetic biology. Its initial version includes all of the information about parts stored in the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (partsregistry.org). SBPkb transforms this information so that it is computable, using our semantic framework for synthetic biology parts. This framework, known as SBOL-semantic, was built as part of the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL), a project of the Synthetic Biology Data Exchange Group. SBOL-semantic represents commonly used synthetic biology entities, and its purpose is to improve the distribution and exchange of descriptions of biological parts. In this paper, we describe the data, our methods for transformation to SBPkb, and finally, we demonstrate the value of our knowledgebase with a set of sample queries. We use RDF technology and SPARQL queries to retrieve candidate "promoter" parts that are known to be both negatively and positively regulated. This method provides new web based data access to perform searches for parts that are not currently possible.

  4. Biologic fatigue in psoriasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Ethan C; Gupta, Rishu; Brown, Gabrielle; Malakouti, Mona; Koo, John

    2014-02-01

    Over the past 15 years, biologic medications have greatly advanced psoriasis therapy. However, these medications may lose their efficacy after long-term use, a concept known as biologic fatigue. We sought to review the available data on biologic fatigue in psoriasis and identify strategies to help clinicians optimally manage patients on biologic medications in order to minimize biologic fatigue. We reviewed phase III clinical trials for the biologic medications used to treat psoriasis and performed a PubMed search for the literature that assessed the loss of response to biologic therapy. In phase III clinical trials of biologic therapies for the treatment of psoriasis, 20-32% of patients lost their PASI-75 response during 0.8-3.9 years of follow-up. A study using infliximab reported the highest percentage of patients who lost their response (32%) over the shortest time-period (0.8 years). Although not consistently reported across all studies, the presence of antidrug antibodies was associated with the loss of response to treatment with infliximab and adalimumab. Biologic fatigue may be most frequent in those patients using infliximab. Further studies are needed to identify risk factors associated with biologic fatigue and to develop meaningful antidrug antibody assays.

  5. Standard biological parts knowledgebase.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Galdzicki

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available We have created the Knowledgebase of Standard Biological Parts (SBPkb as a publically accessible Semantic Web resource for synthetic biology (sbolstandard.org. The SBPkb allows researchers to query and retrieve standard biological parts for research and use in synthetic biology. Its initial version includes all of the information about parts stored in the Registry of Standard Biological Parts (partsregistry.org. SBPkb transforms this information so that it is computable, using our semantic framework for synthetic biology parts. This framework, known as SBOL-semantic, was built as part of the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL, a project of the Synthetic Biology Data Exchange Group. SBOL-semantic represents commonly used synthetic biology entities, and its purpose is to improve the distribution and exchange of descriptions of biological parts. In this paper, we describe the data, our methods for transformation to SBPkb, and finally, we demonstrate the value of our knowledgebase with a set of sample queries. We use RDF technology and SPARQL queries to retrieve candidate "promoter" parts that are known to be both negatively and positively regulated. This method provides new web based data access to perform searches for parts that are not currently possible.

  6. Zika virus genome biology and molecular pathogenesis

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Anyou; Thurmond, Stephanie; Islas, Leonel; Hui, Kingyung; Hai, Rong

    2017-01-01

    Zika virus (ZIKV) is an emerging RNA virus in the widespread Flavivirus genus. Recently, ZIKV has rapidly spread around the world and has been implicated in human disease, including neurological disorders, triggering public and scientific attention. Understanding how ZIKV causes disease is the highest priority, yet little is known about this virus. Here we examine the currently published data from ZIKV studies to provide the latest understanding of ZIKV genome biology and molecular pathogenes...

  7. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... Your Diagnosis Research Understanding Cancer Prognosis Oncologist Anthony L. Back, M.D., a national expert on doctor- ... Centered Approach View this video on YouTube. Anthony L. Back, M.D., coaches other oncologists about how ...

  8. Understanding Inclusion in Cyprus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mamas, Christoforos

    2013-01-01

    This paper provides a framework for understanding inclusion in Cyprus. The evidence base is the result of a six-month qualitative research study in five Cypriot mainstream primary schools. Despite the rhetoric in favour of inclusion, it seems that the Cypriot educational system is still highly segregating in its philosophy and does not fully…

  9. Understanding regime shifts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heymann, Matthias; Nielsen, Kristian Hvidtfelt

    ”. Danish wind power development is all the more surprising, as the innovation process in wind technology was carried to a large extent by non-academic craftsmen and political activists. Many features of this innovation story have been investigated and that research makes it possible to summarize...... the current understanding of the regime shift....

  10. Understanding land administration systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    P. Williamson, Ian; Enemark, Stig; Wallace, Judy

    2008-01-01

    This paper introduces basic land administration theory and highlights four key concepts that are fundamental to understanding modern land administration systems. Readers may recall the first part of the paper in October issue of Coordinates. Here is the concluding part that focuses on the changing...

  11. Understanding the bubbles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Turcan, Romeo V.

    all boils down to the role pricing plays vis-à-vis the emergence of a new venture and its perceived value. Being in the midst of the global economic crisis provides us with a unique opportunity to refine the proposed model, especially by understanding its temporal and contextual boundaries....

  12. Teachers' Understandings of Probability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yan; Thompson, Patrick

    2007-01-01

    Probability is an important idea with a remarkably wide range of applications. However, psychological and instructional studies conducted in the last two decades have consistently documented poor understanding of probability among different populations across different settings. The purpose of this study is to develop a theoretical framework for…

  13. Understanding Ocean Acidification

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 2011

    2011-01-01

    This curriculum module is designed for students who are taking high school chemistry. Students should already have some experience with the following: (1) Understanding and reading the pH scale; (2) Knowledge of the carbon cycle; (3) Using scientific notation to express large and small values; and (4) Reading chemical equations. This curriculum…

  14. Phun Week: Understanding Physiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Limson, Mel; Matyas, Marsha Lakes

    2009-01-01

    Topics such as sports, exercise, health, and nutrition can make the science of physiology relevant and engaging for students. In addition, many lessons on these topics, such as those on the cardiovascular, respiratory, and digestive systems, align with national and state life science education standards. Physiology Understanding Week (PhUn…

  15. Understanding Organizational Advantage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stea, Diego; Linder, Stefan; Foss, Nicolai Juul

    2015-01-01

    The attention-based view (ABV) of the firm highlights the role of decision makers’ attention in firm behavior. The ABV vastly improves our understanding of decision makers’ focus of attention; how that focus is situated in an organization’s procedural and communication channels; and how the distr......The attention-based view (ABV) of the firm highlights the role of decision makers’ attention in firm behavior. The ABV vastly improves our understanding of decision makers’ focus of attention; how that focus is situated in an organization’s procedural and communication channels; and how...... the distribution of the focus of attention among decision makers participating in those procedural and communication channels affects their understanding of a situation, their motivation to act, and, ultimately, their behavior. Significant progress has been made in recent years in refining and extending the ABV....... However, the role of individual differences in the capacity to read other people’s desires, intentions, knowledge, and beliefs that is, the theory of mind (ToM) has remained on the sidelines. The ToM is a natural complement to the ABV. In this study, we explore how the ToM allows for an understanding...

  16. Understanding ADHD through entification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Mikka

    with adults diagnosed with ADHD, I illustrate how the process of entification (transforming a trait, temperament, emotion, or some other psychological phenomenon into a thing or agent) can be a way to understand, accept and handle the symptoms of ADHD. In this context, ADHD is perceived on the one hand...

  17. Measuring Spreadsheet Formula Understandability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hermans, F.F.J.; Pinzger, M.; Van Deursen, A.

    2012-01-01

    Spreadsheets are widely used in industry, because they are flexible and easy to use. Often they are used for business-critical applications. It is however difficult for spreadsheet users to correctly assess the quality of spreadsheets, especially with respect to the understandability.

  18. Understanding Cancer Prognosis

    Medline Plus

    Full Text Available ... 1-800-4-CANCER Live Chat Publications Dictionary Menu Contact Dictionary Search About Cancer Causes and Prevention ... source and a link to this page included, e.g., “Understanding Cancer Prognosis was originally published by ...

  19. Text understanding for computers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kenter, T.M.

    2017-01-01

    A long-standing challenge for computers communicating with humans is to pass the Turing test, i.e., to communicate in such a way that it is impossible for humans to determine whether they are talking to a computer or another human being. The field of natural language understanding — which studies

  20. Interviewing to Understand Strengths

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hass, Michael R.

    2018-01-01

    Interviewing clients about their strengths is an important part of developing a complete understanding of their lives and has several advantages over simply focusing on problems and pathology. Prerequisites for skillfully interviewing for strengths include the communication skills that emerge from a stance of not knowing, developing a vocabulary…

  1. Synthetic Biology: Mapping the Scientific Landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldham, Paul; Hall, Stephen; Burton, Geoff

    2012-01-01

    This article uses data from Thomson Reuters Web of Science to map and analyse the scientific landscape for synthetic biology. The article draws on recent advances in data visualisation and analytics with the aim of informing upcoming international policy debates on the governance of synthetic biology by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. We use mapping techniques to identify how synthetic biology can best be understood and the range of institutions, researchers and funding agencies involved. Debates under the Convention are likely to focus on a possible moratorium on the field release of synthetic organisms, cells or genomes. Based on the empirical evidence we propose that guidance could be provided to funding agencies to respect the letter and spirit of the Convention on Biological Diversity in making research investments. Building on the recommendations of the United States Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues we demonstrate that it is possible to promote independent and transparent monitoring of developments in synthetic biology using modern information tools. In particular, public and policy understanding and engagement with synthetic biology can be enhanced through the use of online interactive tools. As a step forward in this process we make existing data on the scientific literature on synthetic biology available in an online interactive workbook so that researchers, policy makers and civil society can explore the data and draw conclusions for themselves. PMID:22539946

  2. Native American Students' Understanding of Geologic Time Scale: 4th-8th Grade Ojibwe Students' Understanding of Earth's Geologic History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nam, Younkyeong; Karahan, Engin; Roehrig, Gillian

    2016-01-01

    Geologic time scale is a very important concept for understanding long-term earth system events such as climate change. This study examines forty-three 4th-8th grade Native American--particularly Ojibwe tribe--students' understanding of relative ordering and absolute time of Earth's significant geological and biological events. This study also…

  3. The Biology of REM Sleep

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peever, John; Fuller, Patrick M.

    2018-01-01

    Considerable advances in our understanding of the mechanisms and functions of rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep have occurred over the past decade. Much of this progress can be attributed to the development of new neuroscience tools that have enabled high-precision interrogation of brain circuitry linked with REM sleep control, in turn revealing how REM sleep mechanisms themselves impact processes such as sensorimotor function. This review is intended to update the general scientific community about the recent mechanistic, functional and conceptual developments in our current understanding of REM sleep biology and pathobiology. Specifically, this review outlines the historical origins of the discovery of REM sleep, the diversity of REM sleep expression across and within species, the potential functions of REM sleep (e.g., memory consolidation), the neural circuits that control REM sleep, and how dysfunction of REM sleep mechanisms underlie debilitating sleep disorders such as REM sleep behaviour disorder and narcolepsy. PMID:26766231

  4. Biological tracer method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strong-Gunderson, Janet M.; Palumbo, Anthony V.

    1998-01-01

    The present invention is a biological tracer method for characterizing the movement of a material through a medium, comprising the steps of: introducing a biological tracer comprising a microorganism having ice nucleating activity into a medium; collecting at least one sample of the medium from a point removed from the introduction point; and analyzing the sample for the presence of the biological tracer. The present invention is also a method for using a biological tracer as a label for material identification by introducing a biological tracer having ice nucleating activity into a material, collecting a sample of a portion of the labelled material and analyzing the sample for the presence of the biological tracer.

  5. Plant synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wusheng; Stewart, C Neal

    2015-05-01

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

  6. Biological detector and method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sillerud, Laurel; Alam, Todd M; McDowell, Andrew F

    2013-02-26

    A biological detector includes a conduit for receiving a fluid containing one or more magnetic nanoparticle-labeled, biological objects to be detected and one or more permanent magnets or electromagnet for establishing a low magnetic field in which the conduit is disposed. A microcoil is disposed proximate the conduit for energization at a frequency that permits detection by NMR spectroscopy of whether the one or more magnetically-labeled biological objects is/are present in the fluid.

  7. Biological Water Quality Criteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Page contains links to Technical Documents pertaining to Biological Water Quality Criteria, including, technical assistance documents for states, tribes and territories, program overviews, and case studies.

  8. Space Synthetic Biology (SSB)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This project focused on employing advanced biological engineering and bioelectrochemical reactor systems to increase life support loop closure and in situ resource...

  9. Systems Biology of Metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Jens

    2017-06-20

    Metabolism is highly complex and involves thousands of different connected reactions; it is therefore necessary to use mathematical models for holistic studies. The use of mathematical models in biology is referred to as systems biology. In this review, the principles of systems biology are described, and two different types of mathematical models used for studying metabolism are discussed: kinetic models and genome-scale metabolic models. The use of different omics technologies, including transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and fluxomics, for studying metabolism is presented. Finally, the application of systems biology for analyzing global regulatory structures, engineering the metabolism of cell factories, and analyzing human diseases is discussed.

  10. Synthetic biology and the technicity of biofuels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackenzie, Adrian

    2013-06-01

    The principal existing real-world application of synthetic biology is biofuels. Several 'next generation biofuel' companies-Synthetic Genomics, Amyris and Joule Unlimited Technologies-claim to be using synthetic biology to make biofuels. The irony of this is that highly advanced science and engineering serves the very mundane and familiar realm of transport. Despite their rather prosaic nature, biofuels could offer an interesting way to highlight the novelty of synthetic biology from several angles at once. Drawing on the French philosopher of technology and biology Gilbert Simondon, we can understand biofuels as technical objects whose genesis involves processes of concretisation that negotiate between heterogeneous geographical, biological, technical, scientific and commercial realities. Simondon's notion of technicity, the degree of concretisation of a technical object, usefully conceptualises this relationality. Viewed in terms of technicity, we might understand better how technical entities, elements, and ensembles are coming into being in the name of synthetic biology. The broader argument here is that when we seek to identify the newness of disciplines, their newness might be less epistemic and more logistic. Crown Copyright © 2013. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Understanding Games as Played

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Leino, Olli Tapio

    2009-01-01

    Researchers interested in player’s experience would assumedly, across disciplines, agree that the goal behind enquiries into player’s experience is to understand the how games’ features end up affecting the player’s experience. Much of the contemporary interdisciplinary research into player......’s experience leans toward the empirical-scientific, in the forms (neuro)psychology, sociology and cognitive science, to name a few. In such approaches, for example demonstrating correlation between physiological symptoms and an in-game event may amount to ‘understanding’. However, the experience of computer...... game play is a viable topic also for computer game studies within the general tradition of humanities. In such context, the idea of ‘understanding an experience’ invites an approach focusing on the experienced significance of events and objects within computer game play. This focus, in turn, suggests...

  12. Understanding Video Games

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heide Smith, Jonas; Tosca, Susana Pajares; Egenfeldt-Nielsen, Simon

    From Pong to PlayStation 3 and beyond, Understanding Video Games is the first general introduction to the exciting new field of video game studies. This textbook traces the history of video games, introduces the major theories used to analyze games such as ludology and narratology, reviews...... the economics of the game industry, examines the aesthetics of game design, surveys the broad range of game genres, explores player culture, and addresses the major debates surrounding the medium, from educational benefits to the effects of violence. Throughout the book, the authors ask readers to consider...... larger questions about the medium: * What defines a video game? * Who plays games? * Why do we play games? * How do games affect the player? Extensively illustrated, Understanding Video Games is an indispensable and comprehensive resource for those interested in the ways video games are reshaping...

  13. Understanding Video Games

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heide Smith, Jonas; Tosca, Susana Pajares; Egenfeldt-Nielsen, Simon

    From Pong to PlayStation 3 and beyond, Understanding Video Games is the first general introduction to the exciting new field of video game studies. This textbook traces the history of video games, introduces the major theories used to analyze games such as ludology and narratology, reviews...... larger questions about the medium: * What defines a video game? * Who plays games? * Why do we play games? * How do games affect the player? Extensively illustrated, Understanding Video Games is an indispensable and comprehensive resource for those interested in the ways video games are reshaping...... entertainment and society. A companion website (www.routledge.com/textbooks/9780415977210) features student resources including discussion questions for each chapter, a glossary of key terms, a video game timeline, and links to other video game studies resources for further study....

  14. Understanding China's Transformations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Xing

    The objective of this paper is to offer a framework of understanding the dialectical nexus between China's internal evolutions and the external influences with a focus on the century-long "challenge-response" dynamism. That is to explore how external factors helped shaping China's internal...... transformations, i.e. how generations of Chinese have been struggling in responding to the external challenges and attempting to sinicize external political ideas in order to change China from within. Likewise, it is equally important to understand how China's inner transformation contributed to reshaping...... the world. Each time, be it China's dominance or decline, the capitalist world system has to adjust and readjust itself to the opportunities and constraints brought about by the "China factors"....

  15. Strategies for structuring interdisciplinary education in Systems Biology: an European perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cvijovic, Marija; Höfer, Thomas; Acimovic, Jure; Alberghina, Lilia; Almaas, Eivind; Besozzi, Daniela; Blomberg, Anders; Bretschneider, Till; Cascante, Marta; Collin, Olivier; Atauri, de Pedro; Depner, Cornelia; Dickinson, Robert; Dobrzynski, Maciej; Fleck, C.; Garcia-Ojalvo, Jordi; Gonze, Didier; Hahn, Jens; Hess, Heide Marie; Hollmann, Susanne; Krantz, Marcus; Kummer, Ursula; Lundh, Torbjörn; Martial, Gifta; Martins dos Santos, V.A.P.; Mauer-Oberthür, Angela; Regierer, Babette; Skene, Barbara; Stalidzans, Egils; Stelling, Jörg; Teusink, Bas; Workman, Christopher T.; Hohmann, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Systems Biology is an approach to biology and medicine that has the potential to lead to a better understanding of how biological properties emerge from the interaction of genes, proteins, molecules, cells and organisms. The approach aims at elucidating how these interactions govern biological

  16. Intention understanding in autism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Boria

    Full Text Available When we observe a motor act (e.g. grasping a cup done by another individual, we extract, according to how the motor act is performed and its context, two types of information: the goal (grasping and the intention underlying it (e.g. grasping for drinking. Here we examined whether children with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD are able to understand these two aspects of motor acts. Two experiments were carried out. In the first, one group of high-functioning children with ASD and one of typically developing (TD children were presented with pictures showing hand-object interactions and asked what the individual was doing and why. In half of the "why" trials the observed grip was congruent with the function of the object ("why-use" trials, in the other half it corresponded to the grip typically used to move that object ("why-place" trials. The results showed that children with ASD have no difficulties in reporting the goals of individual motor acts. In contrast they made several errors in the why task with all errors occurring in the "why-place" trials. In the second experiment the same two groups of children saw pictures showing a hand-grip congruent with the object use, but within a context suggesting either the use of the object or its placement into a container. Here children with ASD performed as TD children, correctly indicating the agent's intention. In conclusion, our data show that understanding others' intentions can occur in two ways: by relying on motor information derived from the hand-object interaction, and by using functional information derived from the object's standard use. Children with ASD have no deficit in the second type of understanding, while they have difficulties in understanding others' intentions when they have to rely exclusively on motor cues.

  17. Understanding nuclear issues

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Marx, G. [Department of Atomic Physics, Eoetvoes Univ., Budapest (Hungary)

    1999-09-01

    In our days technological progress for the benefit of society is slowed down by the fact that common citizens (opinion-forming media reporters, journalists, furthermore elected decision-makers) are underinformed about basic numerical facts concerning harms and benefits of high technology. Here a comparative risk study is presented about smoking, ozone hole, global warming, and ionizing radiation. This approach has turned out to be successful in educating the youth in Hungary; because school-going teenagers do understand numbers. (author)

  18. Understanding the spermatozoon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neri, Queenie V; Hu, Jennifer; Rosenwaks, Zev; Palermo, Gianpiero D

    2014-01-01

    The former perception of the spermatozoon as a delivery device of the male genome has been expanded to include a new understanding of the cell's complex role in fertilization. Once the spermatozoon reaches the oocyte, it triggers egg activation and orchestrates the stages of pre- and post-fertilization in a preprogrammed pattern while tapping the oocyte's resources in an effort to generate a new life.

  19. Understanding Mediation Support

    OpenAIRE

    Lanz, David; Pring, Jamie; von Burg, Corinne; Zeller, Mathias

    2017-01-01

    Recent decades have witnessed increasing institutionalization of mediation support through the establishment of mediation support structures (MSS) within foreign ministries and secretariats of multilateral organizations. This study sheds light on this trend and aims to better understand the emergence, design and development of different MSS. This study analyzes six MSS, namely those established in the United Nations (UN), the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the Eu...

  20. Understanding nuclear issues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marx, G.

    1999-01-01

    In our days technological progress for the benefit of society is slowed down by the fact that common citizens (opinion-forming media reporters, journalists, furthermore elected decision-makers) are underinformed about basic numerical facts concerning harms and benefits of high technology. Here a comparative risk study is presented about smoking, ozone hole, global warming, and ionizing radiation. This approach has turned out to be successful in educating the youth in Hungary; because school-going teenagers do understand numbers. (author)

  1. Image Understanding Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980-03-31

    Numerlues en Sciences Physiques et Economiques , Collection Methode Mathematiques de l’Informatique, Dunod, 1976. 47 26. P. Saint-Pierre, "Etude Theorique et...overlap since adjacent linear features are being presented. References 1. S. Rubin, "The ARGOS Image Understanding System," Ph.D. thesis, Computer Science ...Techniques," TR 480, Computer Science Center, University of Maryland, September i979. 5. Davis, Larry S. and Azriel Rosenfeld, "Hierarchical Relaxation for

  2. Modeling the mechanisms of biological GTP hydrolysis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carvalho, Alexandra T.P.; Szeler, Klaudia; Vavitsas, Konstantinos

    2015-01-01

    in which GTP hydrolysis is activated and regulated is still a controversial topic and well-designed simulations can play an important role in resolving and rationalizing the experimental data. In this review, we discuss the contributions of computational biology to our understanding of GTP hydrolysis...

  3. Nutritional Systems Biology: Definitions and Approaches

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Panagiotou, Gianni; Nielsen, Jens

    2009-01-01

    waiting for a predictive knowledge of genetic variation. It is widely recognized that systems and network biology has the potential to increase our understanding of how nutrition influences metabolic pathways and homeostasis, how this regulation is disturbed in a diet-related disease, and to what extent...... individual genotypes contribute to such diseases....

  4. Modelling biological pathway dynamics with Timed Automata

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schivo, Stefano; Scholma, Jetse; Urquidi Camacho, R.A.; Wanders, B.; van der Vet, P.E.; Karperien, Hermanus Bernardus Johannes; Langerak, Romanus; van de Pol, Jan Cornelis; Post, Janine Nicole

    2012-01-01

    When analysing complex interaction networks occurring in biological cells, a biologist needs computational support in order to understand the effects of signalling molecules (e.g. growth factors, drugs). ANIMO (Analysis of Networks with Interactive MOdelling) is a tool that allows the user to create

  5. Biological Awareness: Statements for Self-Discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edington, D.W.; Cunningham, Lee

    This guide to biological awareness through guided self-discovery is based on 51 single focus statements concerning the human body. For each statement there are explanations of the underlying physiological principles and suggested activities and discussion ideas to encourage understanding of the statement in terms of the human body's functions,…

  6. Methods in molecular biology: plant cytogenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cytogenetic studies have contributed greatly to our understanding of genetics, biology, reproduction, and evolution. From early studies in basic chromosome behavior the field has expanded enabling whole genome analysis to the manipulation of chromosomes and their organization. This book covers a ran...

  7. Towards distributed multiscale simulation of biological processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bernsdorf, J.; Berti, G.; Chopard, B.; Hegewald, J.; Krafczyk, M.; Wang, D.; Lorenz, E.; Hoekstra, A.

    2011-01-01

    The understanding of biological processes, e.g. related to cardio-vascular disease and treatment, can significantly be improved by numerical simulation. In this paper, we present an approach for a multiscale simulation environment, applied for the prediction of in-stent re-stenos is. Our focus is on

  8. Understanding individual human mobility patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Marta C; Hidalgo, César A; Barabási, Albert-László

    2008-06-05

    Despite their importance for urban planning, traffic forecasting and the spread of biological and mobile viruses, our understanding of the basic laws governing human motion remains limited owing to the lack of tools to monitor the time-resolved location of individuals. Here we study the trajectory of 100,000 anonymized mobile phone users whose position is tracked for a six-month period. We find that, in contrast with the random trajectories predicted by the prevailing Lévy flight and random walk models, human trajectories show a high degree of temporal and spatial regularity, each individual being characterized by a time-independent characteristic travel distance and a significant probability to return to a few highly frequented locations. After correcting for differences in travel distances and the inherent anisotropy of each trajectory, the individual travel patterns collapse into a single spatial probability distribution, indicating that, despite the diversity of their travel history, humans follow simple reproducible patterns. This inherent similarity in travel patterns could impact all phenomena driven by human mobility, from epidemic prevention to emergency response, urban planning and agent-based modelling.

  9. Integration of biological clocks and rhythms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Refinetti, Roberto

    2012-04-01

    Animals, plants, and microorganisms exhibit numerous biological rhythms that are generated by numerous biological clocks. This article summarizes experimental data pertinent to the often-ignored issue of integration of multiple rhythms. Five contexts of integration are discussed: (i) integration of circadian rhythms of multiple processes within an individual organism, (ii) integration of biological rhythms operating in different time scales (such as tidal, daily, and seasonal), (iii) integration of rhythms across multiple species, (iv) integration of rhythms of different members of a species, and (v) integration of rhythmicity and physiological homeostasis. Understanding of these multiple rhythmic interactions is an important first step in the eventual thorough understanding of how organisms arrange their vital functions temporally within and without their bodies. © 2012 American Physiological Society. Compr Physiol 2:1213-1239, 2012.

  10. C. elegans network biology: a beginning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piano, Fabio; Gunsalus, Kristin C; Hill, David E; Vidal, Marc

    2006-08-21

    The architecture and dynamics of molecular networks can provide an understanding of complex biological processes complementary to that obtained from the in-depth study of single genes and proteins. With a completely sequenced and well-annotated genome, a fully characterized cell lineage, and powerful tools available to dissect development, Caenorhabditis elegans, among metazoans, provides an optimal system to bridge cellular and organismal biology with the global properties of macromolecular networks. This chapter considers omic technologies available for C. elegans to describe molecular networks--encompassing transcriptional and phenotypic profiling as well as physical interaction mapping--and discusses how their individual and integrated applications are paving the way for a network-level understanding of C. elegans biology.

  11. Practical approaches to biological inorganic chemistry

    CERN Document Server

    Louro, Ricardo O

    2012-01-01

    The book reviews the use of spectroscopic and related methods to investigate the complex structures and mechanisms of biological inorganic systems that contain metals. Each chapter presents an overview of the technique including relevant theory, clearly explains what it is and how it works and then presents how the technique is actually used to evaluate biological structures. Practical examples and problems are included to illustrate each technique and to aid understanding. Designed for students and researchers who want to learn both the basics, and more advanced aspects of bioinorganic chemistry. It includes many colour illustrations enable easier visualization of molecular mechanisms and structures. It provides worked examples and problems that are included to illustrate and test the reader's understanding of each technique. It is written by a multi-author team who use and teach the most important techniques used today to analyse complex biological structures.

  12. Organic chemistry and biology: chemical biology through the eyes of collaboration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hruby, Victor J

    2009-12-18

    From a scientific perspective, efforts to understand biology including what constitutes health and disease has become a chemical problem. However, chemists and biologists "see" the problems of understanding biology from different perspectives, and this has retarded progress in solving the problems especially as they relate to health and disease. This suggests that close collaboration between chemists and biologists is not only necessary but essential for progress in both the biology and chemistry that will provide solutions to the global questions of biology. This perspective has directed my scientific efforts for the past 45 years, and in this overview I provide my perspective of how the applications of synthetic chemistry, structural design, and numerous other chemical principles have intersected in my collaborations with biologists to provide new tools, new science, and new insights that were only made possible and fruitful by these collaborations.

  13. Understanding radioactive waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Murray, R.L.

    1981-12-01

    This document contains information on all aspects of radioactive wastes. Facts are presented about radioactive wastes simply, clearly and in an unbiased manner which makes the information readily accessible to the interested public. The contents are as follows: questions and concerns about wastes; atoms and chemistry; radioactivity; kinds of radiation; biological effects of radiation; radiation standards and protection; fission and fission products; the Manhattan Project; defense and development; uses of isotopes and radiation; classification of wastes; spent fuels from nuclear reactors; storage of spent fuel; reprocessing, recycling, and resources; uranium mill tailings; low-level wastes; transportation; methods of handling high-level nuclear wastes; project salt vault; multiple barrier approach; research on waste isolation; legal requiremnts; the national waste management program; societal aspects of radioactive wastes; perspectives; glossary; appendix A (scientific American articles); appendix B (reference material on wastes). (ATT)

  14. Understanding radioactive waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murray, R.L.

    1981-12-01

    This document contains information on all aspects of radioactive wastes. Facts are presented about radioactive wastes simply, clearly and in an unbiased manner which makes the information readily accessible to the interested public. The contents are as follows: questions and concerns about wastes; atoms and chemistry; radioactivity; kinds of radiation; biological effects of radiation; radiation standards and protection; fission and fission products; the Manhattan Project; defense and development; uses of isotopes and radiation; classification of wastes; spent fuels from nuclear reactors; storage of spent fuel; reprocessing, recycling, and resources; uranium mill tailings; low-level wastes; transportation; methods of handling high-level nuclear wastes; project salt vault; multiple barrier approach; research on waste isolation; legal requiremnts; the national waste management program; societal aspects of radioactive wastes; perspectives; glossary; appendix A (scientific American articles); appendix B (reference material on wastes)

  15. Strange Bedfellows; Physical and Biological Oceanographers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wooster, W. S.

    2002-12-01

    When I started graduate study at Scripps in 1947, both the text, "The Oceans", and the curriculum - all students took the introductory courses in physics, chemistry, biology, and geology - conspired to create awareness of the interactions among these fields. In their preface, the authors spoke of the book as "an aid to the beginner and specialist alike in the coordination of the various fields of oceanography." Harald Sverdrup, perhaps the best known physical oceanographer of his day, introduced us to the interdisciplinary organization, ICES, wrote an important paper (1953) on "the vernal blooming of phytoplankton", and together with fishery biologist O.E.Sette, launched the world renowned CalCOFI program. Another noted physical oceanographer, Henry Stommel, 1949, teamed up with biologist Gordon Riley in a major study of the quantitative ecology of plankton. At the time, physical and biological oceanographers often seemed to be engaged in the same mission. The curriculum format, with its four basic courses, spread to most other graduate programs in oceanography, but the forces of specialization also spread. While the biological oceanographers have always seen the need to understand the milieu within which their creatures function, the physicists often seemed to chafe against wasting their time on squishy subjects like biology when there were so many more important and fascinating things to study. Interactions were further complicated by the confusion between "biological oceanography" and "marine biology", and by the status of "fishery biology" which was often disdained by oceanographers of all stripes. I propose to discuss the evolution of the relationship among these fields during the 60 years since "The Oceans" was first published, concluding with the present marriage of convenience, or at least amicable co-habitation, forced by the widespread concern over the threat of global warming and the need to understand its consequences. It has become clear that

  16. Evolutionary developmental biology its roots and characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morange, Michel

    2011-09-01

    The rise of evolutionary developmental biology was not the progressive isolation and characterization of developmental genes and gene networks. Many obstacles had to be overcome: the idea that all genes were more or less involved in development; the evidence that developmental processes in insects had nothing in common with those of vertebrates. Different lines of research converged toward the creation of evolutionary developmental biology, giving this field of research its present heterogeneity. This does not prevent all those working in the field from sharing the conviction that a precise characterization of evolutionary variations is required to fully understand the evolutionary process. Some evolutionary developmental biologists directly challenge the Modern Synthesis. I propose some ways to reconcile these apparently opposed visions of evolution. The turbulence seen in evolutionary developmental biology reflects the present entry of history into biology. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Biological Systems Thinking for Control Engineering Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. J. Murray-Smith

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Artificial neural networks and genetic algorithms are often quoted in discussions about the contribution of biological systems thinking to engineering design. This paper reviews work on the neuromuscular system, a field in which biological systems thinking could make specific contributions to the development and design of automatic control systems for mechatronics and robotics applications. The paper suggests some specific areas in which a better understanding of this biological control system could be expected to contribute to control engineering design methods in the future. Particular emphasis is given to the nonlinear nature of elements within the neuromuscular system and to processes of neural signal processing, sensing and system adaptivity. Aspects of the biological system that are of particular significance for engineering control systems include sensor fusion, sensor redundancy and parallelism, together with advanced forms of signal processing for adaptive and learning control. 

  18. Biological Clocks & Circadian Rhythms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Laura; Jones, M. Gail

    2009-01-01

    The study of biological clocks and circadian rhythms is an excellent way to address the inquiry strand in the National Science Education Standards (NSES) (NRC 1996). Students can study these everyday phenomena by designing experiments, gathering and analyzing data, and generating new experiments. As students explore biological clocks and circadian…

  19. Biologic Patterns of Disability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granger, Carl V.; Linn, Richard T.

    2000-01-01

    Describes the use of Rasch analysis to elucidate biological patterns of disability present in the functional ability of persons undergoing medical rehabilitation. Uses two measures, one for inpatients and one for outpatients, to illustrate the approach and provides examples of some biological patterns of disability associated with specific types…

  20. Archives: Tropical Freshwater Biology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Items 1 - 23 of 23 ... Archives: Tropical Freshwater Biology. Journal Home > Archives: Tropical Freshwater Biology. Log in or Register to get access to full text downloads. Username, Password, Remember me, or Register · Journal Home · ABOUT THIS JOURNAL · Advanced Search · Current Issue · Archives. 1 - 23 of 23 Items ...