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Sample records for voltage-dependent process enhanced

  1. Physics-Based Compact Model for CIGS and CdTe Solar Cells: From Voltage-Dependent Carrier Collection to Light-Enhanced Reverse Breakdown: Preprint

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sun, Xingshu; Alam, Muhammad Ashraful; Raguse, John; Garris, Rebekah; Deline, Chris; Silverman, Timothy

    2015-10-15

    In this paper, we develop a physics-based compact model for copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS) and cadmium telluride (CdTe) heterojunction solar cells that attributes the failure of superposition to voltage-dependent carrier collection in the absorber layer, and interprets light-enhanced reverse breakdown as a consequence of tunneling-assisted Poole-Frenkel conduction. The temperature dependence of the model is validated against both simulation and experimental data for the entire range of bias conditions. The model can be used to characterize device parameters, optimize new designs, and most importantly, predict performance and reliability of solar panels including the effects of self-heating and reverse breakdown due to partial-shading degradation.

  2. Inflammatory cytokine signaling in insulin producing beta-cells enhances the colocalization correlation coefficient between L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel and calcium-sensing receptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkash, Jai

    2008-08-01

    The immunological processes in type 1 diabetes and metabolic/inflammatory disorder in type 2 diabetes converge on common signaling pathway(s) leading to beta-cell death in these two diseases. The cytokine-mediated beta-cell death seems to be dependent on voltage-dependent calcium channel (VDCC)-mediated Ca2+ entry. The Ca2+ handling molecular networks control the homeostasis of [Ca2+]i in the beta-cell. The activity and membrane density of VDCC are regulated by several mechanisms including G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). CaR is a 123-kDa seven transmembrane extracellular Ca2+ sensing protein that belongs to GPCR family C. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), is a cytokine widely known to activate nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) transcription in beta-cells. To obtain a better understanding of TNF-alpha-induced molecular interactions between CaR and VDCC, confocal fluorescence measurements were performed on insulin-producing beta-cells exposed to varying concentrations of TNF-alpha and the results are discussed in the light of increased colocalization correlation coefficient. The insulin producing beta-cells were exposed to 5, 10, 20, 30, and 50 ng/ml TNF-alpha for 24 h at 37 degrees . The cells were then immunolabelled with antibodies directed against CaR, VDCC, and NF-kappaB. The confocal fluorescence imaging data showed enhancement in the colocalization correlation coefficient between CaR and VDCC in beta-cells exposed to TNF-alpha thereby indicating increased membrane delimited spatial interactions between these two membrane proteins. TNF-alpha-induced colocalization of VDCC with CaR was inhibited by nimodipine, an inhibitor of L-type VDCC thereby suggesting that VDCC activity is required for spatial interactions with CaR. The 3-D confocal fluorescence imaging data also demonstrated that addition of TNF-alpha to RIN cells led to the translocation of NF-kappaB from the cytoplasm to the nucleus. Such molecular interactions between CaR and VDCC in tissues

  3. Voltage Dependence of Supercapacitor Capacitance

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    Szewczyk Arkadiusz

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Electronic Double-Layer Capacitors (EDLC, called Supercapacitors (SC, are electronic devices that are capable to store a relatively high amount of energy in a small volume comparing to other types of capacitors. They are composed of an activated carbon layer and electrolyte solution. The charge is stored on electrodes, forming the Helmholtz layer, and in electrolyte. The capacitance of supercapacitor is voltage- dependent. We propose an experimental method, based on monitoring of charging and discharging a supercapacitor, which enables to evaluate the charge in an SC structure as well as the Capacitance-Voltage (C-V dependence. The measurement setup, method and experimental results of charging/discharging commercially available supercapacitors in various voltage and current conditions are presented. The total charge stored in an SC structure is proportional to the square of voltage at SC electrodes while the charge on electrodes increases linearly with the voltage on SC electrodes. The Helmholtz capacitance increases linearly with the voltage bias while a sublinear increase of total capacitance was found. The voltage on SC increases after the discharge of electrodes due to diffusion of charges from the electrolyte to the electrodes. We have found that the recovery voltage value is linearly proportional to the initial bias voltage value.

  4. A vesicle-trafficking protein commandeers Kv channel voltage sensors for voltage-dependent secretion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grefen, Christopher; Karnik, Rucha; Larson, Emily; Lefoulon, Cécile; Wang, Yizhou; Waghmare, Sakharam; Zhang, Ben; Hills, Adrian; Blatt, Michael R

    2015-01-01

    Growth in plants depends on ion transport for osmotic solute uptake and secretory membrane trafficking to deliver material for wall remodelling and cell expansion. The coordination of these processes lies at the heart of the question, unresolved for more than a century, of how plants regulate cell volume and turgor. Here we report that the SNARE protein SYP121 (SYR1/PEN1), which mediates vesicle fusion at the Arabidopsis plasma membrane, binds the voltage sensor domains (VSDs) of K(+) channels to confer a voltage dependence on secretory traffic in parallel with K(+) uptake. VSD binding enhances secretion in vivo subject to voltage, and mutations affecting VSD conformation alter binding and secretion in parallel with channel gating, net K(+) concentration, osmotic content and growth. These results demonstrate a new and unexpected mechanism for secretory control, in which a subset of plant SNAREs commandeer K(+) channel VSDs to coordinate membrane trafficking with K(+) uptake for growth.

  5. Voltage dependence of the Na-K pump.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Weer, P; Gadsby, D C; Rakowski, R F

    1988-01-01

    Present evidence demonstrates that the Na-K pump rate is voltage dependent, whereas early work was largely inconclusive. The I-V relationship has a positive slope over a wide voltage range, and the existence of a negative slope region is now doubtful. Monotonic voltage dependence is consistent with the reaction cycle containing a single voltage-dependent step. Recent measurements suggest that this voltage-dependent step occurs during Na translocation and may be deocclusion of Na+. In addition, two results suggest that K translocation is voltage insensitive: (a) large positive potentials appear to have no influence on Rb-Rb exchange or associated conformational transitions; and (b) transient currents associated with Na translocation appear to involve movement of a single charge, which is sufficient for a 3Na-2K cycle. The simplest interpretation is that the pump's cation binding sites supply two negative charges. Pre-steady-state measurements demonstrate that Na translocation precedes the pump cycle's rate-limiting step, presumably K translocation. But, because K translocation seems voltage insensitive, the voltage dependence of the steady-state pump rate probably reflects that of the concentration of the intermediate entering this slow step. Further pump current and flux data (both transient and steady-state), carefully determined over a range of conditions, should increase our understanding of the voltage-dependent step(s) in the Na-K pump cycle.

  6. The effects of S4 segments on the voltage-dependence of inactivation for Cav3.1 calcium channels

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI JunYing

    2007-01-01

    T-type calcium channels exhibit fast voltage-dependent inactivation,for which the underlying structure-function relationship still remains unclear.To investigate the roles of S4 segments in voltage-dependent inactivation of T-type calcium channels,we created S4 replacement chimeras between Cav3.1 calcium channels(fast voltage-dependent inactivation)and Cav1.2 calcium channels(little oltage-dependent inactivation)by replacing S4s in Cav3.1 with the corresponding regions in Cav1.2.Wild type and chimeric channels were expressed in Xenopus oocytes and channel currents were recorded with two-electrode voltage-clamp.We showed that replacing S4 region in domain I shifted voltage-dependence for inactivation of Cav3.1 to the left,and the V0.5 inact and kinact value were significantly changed.However replacing S4s in domains Ⅱ-Ⅳ had no effects on the voltage-dependent inactivation properties.These results suggest that the roles of S4 segments in domains Ⅰ-Ⅳ are different,and S4 in domain I is likely to be involved in voltage-dependent Inactivation process.Its movement during membrane depolarization may trigger a conformational change in the inactivation gate.

  7. A comparative study of the action of tolperisone on seven different voltage dependent sodium channel isoforms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofer, Doris; Lohberger, Birgit; Steinecker, Bibiane; Schmidt, Kurt; Quasthoff, Stefan; Schreibmayer, Wolfgang

    2006-05-24

    The specific, acute interaction of tolperisone, an agent used as a muscle relaxant and for the treatment of chronic pain conditions, with the Na(v1.2), Na(v1.3), Na(v1.4), Na(v1.5), Na(v1.6), Na(v1.7), and Na(v1.8) isoforms of voltage dependent sodium channels was investigated and compared to that of lidocaine. Voltage dependent sodium channels were expressed in the Xenopus laevis oocyte expression system and sodium currents were recorded with the two electrode voltage clamp technique. Cumulative dose response relations revealed marked differences in IC(50) values between the two drugs on identical isoforms, as well as between isoforms. A detailed kinetic analysis uncovered that tolperisone as well as lidocaine exhibited their blocking action not only via state dependent association/dissociation with voltage dependent sodium channels, but a considerable fraction of inhibition is tonic, i.e. permanent and basic in nature. Voltage dependent activation was affected to a minor extent only. A shift in steady-state inactivation to more negative potentials could be observed for most drug/isoform combinations. The contribution of this shift to overall block was, however, small at drug concentrations resulting in considerable overall block. Recovery from inactivation was affected notably by both drugs. Lidocaine application led to a pronounced prolongation of the time constant of the fast recovery process for the Na(v1.3), Na(v1.5), and Na(v1.7) isoforms, indicating common structural properties in the local anesthetic receptor site of these three proteins. Interestingly, this characteristic drug action was not observed for tolperisone.

  8. Proper Voltage-Dependent Ion Channel Function in Dysferlin-Deficient Cardiomyocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubi, Lena; Gawali, Vaibhavkumar S; Kubista, Helmut; Todt, Hannes; Hilber, Karlheinz; Koenig, Xaver

    2015-01-01

    Dysferlin plays a decisive role in calcium-dependent membrane repair in myocytes. Mutations in the encoding DYSF gene cause a number of myopathies, e.g. limb-girdle muscular dystrophy type 2B (LGMD2B). Besides skeletal muscle degenerative processes, dysferlin deficiency is also associated with cardiac complications. Thus, both LGMD2B patients and dysferlin-deficient mice develop a dilated cardiomyopathy. We and others have recently reported that dystrophin-deficient ventricular cardiomyocytes from mouse models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy show significant abnormalities in voltage-dependent ion channels, which may contribute to the pathophysiology in dystrophic cardiomyopathy. The aim of the present study was to investigate if dysferlin, like dystrophin, is a regulator of cardiac ion channels. By using the whole cell patch-clamp technique, we compared the properties of voltage-dependent calcium and sodium channels, as well as action potentials in ventricular cardiomyocytes isolated from the hearts of normal and dysferlin-deficient (dysf) mice. In contrast to dystrophin deficiency, the lack of dysferlin did not impair the ion channel properties and left action potential parameters unaltered. In connection with normal ECGs in dysf mice these results suggest that dysferlin deficiency does not perturb cardiac electrophysiology. Our study demonstrates that dysferlin does not regulate cardiac voltage-dependent ion channels, and implies that abnormalities in cardiac ion channels are not a universal characteristic of all muscular dystrophy types. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. Voltage Dependence of Conformational Dynamics and Subconducting States of VDAC-1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briones, Rodolfo; Weichbrodt, Conrad; Paltrinieri, Licia; Mey, Ingo; Villinger, Saskia; Giller, Karin; Lange, Adam; Zweckstetter, Markus; Griesinger, Christian; Becker, Stefan; Steinem, Claudia; de Groot, Bert L

    2016-09-20

    The voltage-dependent anion channel 1 (VDAC-1) is an important protein of the outer mitochondrial membrane that transports energy metabolites and is involved in apoptosis. The available structures of VDAC proteins show a wide β-stranded barrel pore, with its N-terminal α-helix (N-α) bound to its interior. Electrophysiology experiments revealed that voltage, its polarity, and membrane composition modulate VDAC currents. Experiments with VDAC-1 mutants identified amino acids that regulate the gating process. However, the mechanisms for how these factors regulate VDAC-1, and which changes they trigger in the channel, are still unknown. In this study, molecular dynamics simulations and single-channel experiments of VDAC-1 show agreement for the current-voltage relationships of an "open" channel and they also show several subconducting transient states that are more cation selective in the simulations. We observed voltage-dependent asymmetric distortions of the VDAC-1 barrel and the displacement of particular charged amino acids. We constructed conformational models of the protein voltage response and the pore changes that consistently explain the protein conformations observed at opposite voltage polarities, either in phosphatidylethanolamine or phosphatidylcholine membranes. The submicrosecond VDAC-1 voltage response shows intrinsic structural changes that explain the role of key gating amino acids and support some of the current gating hypotheses. These voltage-dependent protein changes include asymmetric barrel distortion, its interaction with the membrane, and significant displacement of N-α amino acids.

  10. Proper Voltage-Dependent Ion Channel Function in Dysferlin-Deficient Cardiomyocytes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lena Rubi

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Dysferlin plays a decisive role in calcium-dependent membrane repair in myocytes. Mutations in the encoding DYSF gene cause a number of myopathies, e.g. limb-girdle muscular dystrophy type 2B (LGMD2B. Besides skeletal muscle degenerative processes, dysferlin deficiency is also associated with cardiac complications. Thus, both LGMD2B patients and dysferlin-deficient mice develop a dilated cardiomyopathy. We and others have recently reported that dystrophin-deficient ventricular cardiomyocytes from mouse models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy show significant abnormalities in voltage-dependent ion channels, which may contribute to the pathophysiology in dystrophic cardiomyopathy. The aim of the present study was to investigate if dysferlin, like dystrophin, is a regulator of cardiac ion channels. Methods and Results: By using the whole cell patch-clamp technique, we compared the properties of voltage-dependent calcium and sodium channels, as well as action potentials in ventricular cardiomyocytes isolated from the hearts of normal and dysferlin-deficient (dysf mice. In contrast to dystrophin deficiency, the lack of dysferlin did not impair the ion channel properties and left action potential parameters unaltered. In connection with normal ECGs in dysf mice these results suggest that dysferlin deficiency does not perturb cardiac electrophysiology. Conclusion: Our study demonstrates that dysferlin does not regulate cardiac voltage-dependent ion channels, and implies that abnormalities in cardiac ion channels are not a universal characteristic of all muscular dystrophy types.

  11. Voltage-dependent calcium channels from brain incorporated into planar lipid bilayers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Mark T.; French, Robert J.; Krueger, Bruce K.

    1984-03-01

    Many important physiological processes, including neurotransmitter release and muscle contraction1-3, are regulated by the concentration of Ca2+ ions in the cell. Levels of cytoplasmic Ca2+ can be elevated by the entry of Ca2+ ions through voltage-dependent channels which are selective for Ca2+, Ba2+ and Sr2+ ions4-14. We have measured currents through single, voltage-dependent calcium channels from rat brain that have been incorporated into planar lipid bilayers. Channel gating was voltage-dependent: membrane depolarization increased the channel open times and decreased the closed times. The channels were selective for divalent cations over monovalent ions. The well-known calcium channel blockers, lanthanum and cadmium, produced a concentration-dependent reduction of the apparent single-channel conductance. Contrary to expectations14, the nature of the divalent cation carrying current through the channel affected not only the single-channel conductance, but also the channel open times, with mean open times being shortest for barium.

  12. Voltage-dependent gating of hERG potassium channels

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    Yen May eCheng

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The mechanisms by which voltage-gated channels sense changes in membrane voltage and energetically couple this with opening of the ion conducting pore has been the source of significant interest. In voltage-gated potassium (Kv channels, much of our knowledge in this area comes from Shaker-type channels, for which voltage-dependent gating is quite rapid. In these channels, activation and deactivation are associated with rapid reconfiguration of the voltage-sensing domain unit that is electromechanically coupled, via the S4-S5 linker helix, to the rate-limiting opening of an intracellular pore gate. However, fast voltage-dependent gating kinetics are not typical of all Kv channels, such as Kv11.1 (human ether-a-go-go related gene, hERG, which activates and deactivates very slowly. Compared to Shaker channels, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying slow hERG gating is much poorer. Here, we present a comparative review of the structure-function relationships underlying voltage-dependent gating in Shaker and hERG channels, with a focus on the roles of the voltage sensing domain and the S4-S5 linker that couples voltage sensor movements to the pore. Measurements of gating current kinetics and fluorimetric analysis of voltage sensor movement are consistent with models suggesting that the hERG activation pathway contains a voltage independent step, which limits voltage sensor transitions. Constraints upon hERG voltage sensor movement may result from loose packing of the S4 helices and additional intra-voltage sensor counter charge interactions. More recent data suggest that key amino acid differences in the hERG voltage sensing unit and S4-S5 linker, relative to fast activating Shaker-type Kv channels, may also contribute to the increased stability of the resting state of the voltage sensor.

  13. Pharmacology of the human cell voltage-dependent cation channel. Part II: inactivation and blocking

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bennekou, Poul; Barksmann, Trine L.; Kristensen, Berit I.

    2004-01-01

    Human red cells; Nonselective voltage-dependent cation channel; NSVDC channel; Thiol group reagents......Human red cells; Nonselective voltage-dependent cation channel; NSVDC channel; Thiol group reagents...

  14. Manipulating the voltage dependence of tunneling spin torques

    KAUST Repository

    Manchon, Aurelien

    2012-10-01

    Voltage-driven spin transfer torques in magnetic tunnel junctions provide an outstanding tool to design advanced spin-based devices for memory and reprogrammable logic applications. The non-linear voltage dependence of the torque has a direct impact on current-driven magnetization dynamics and on devices performances. After a brief overview of the progress made to date in the theoretical description of the spin torque in tunnel junctions, I present different ways to alter and control the bias dependence of both components of the spin torque. Engineering the junction (barrier and electrodes) structural asymmetries or controlling the spin accumulation profile in the free layer offer promising tools to design effcient spin devices.

  15. Voltage dependent potassium channel remodeling in murine intestinal smooth muscle hypertrophy induced by partial obstruction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong-Hai Liu

    Full Text Available Partial obstruction of the small intestine causes obvious hypertrophy of smooth muscle cells and motility disorder in the bowel proximate to the obstruction. To identify electric remodeling of hypertrophic smooth muscles in partially obstructed murine small intestine, the patch-clamp and intracellular microelectrode recording methods were used to identify the possible electric remodeling and Western blot, immunofluorescence and immunoprecipitation were utilized to examine the channel protein expression and phosphorylation level changes in this research. After 14 days of obstruction, partial obstruction caused obvious smooth muscle hypertrophy in the proximally located intestine. The slow waves of intestinal smooth muscles in the dilated region were significantly suppressed, their amplitude and frequency were reduced, whilst the resting membrane potentials were depolarized compared with normal and sham animals. The current density of voltage dependent potassium channel (KV was significantly decreased in the hypertrophic smooth muscle cells and the voltage sensitivity of KV activation was altered. The sensitivity of KV currents (IKV to TEA, a nonselective potassium channel blocker, increased significantly, but the sensitivity of IKv to 4-AP, a KV blocker, stays the same. The protein levels of KV4.3 and KV2.2 were up-regulated in the hypertrophic smooth muscle cell membrane. The serine and threonine phosphorylation levels of KV4.3 and KV2.2 were significantly increased in the hypertrophic smooth muscle cells. Thus this study represents the first identification of KV channel remodeling in murine small intestinal smooth muscle hypertrophy induced by partial obstruction. The enhanced phosphorylations of KV4.3 and KV2.2 may be involved in this process.

  16. Voltage dependent potassium channel remodeling in murine intestinal smooth muscle hypertrophy induced by partial obstruction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dong-Hai; Huang, Xu; Guo, Xin; Meng, Xiang-Min; Wu, Yi-Song; Lu, Hong-Li; Zhang, Chun-Mei; Kim, Young-chul; Xu, Wen-Xie

    2014-01-01

    Partial obstruction of the small intestine causes obvious hypertrophy of smooth muscle cells and motility disorder in the bowel proximate to the obstruction. To identify electric remodeling of hypertrophic smooth muscles in partially obstructed murine small intestine, the patch-clamp and intracellular microelectrode recording methods were used to identify the possible electric remodeling and Western blot, immunofluorescence and immunoprecipitation were utilized to examine the channel protein expression and phosphorylation level changes in this research. After 14 days of obstruction, partial obstruction caused obvious smooth muscle hypertrophy in the proximally located intestine. The slow waves of intestinal smooth muscles in the dilated region were significantly suppressed, their amplitude and frequency were reduced, whilst the resting membrane potentials were depolarized compared with normal and sham animals. The current density of voltage dependent potassium channel (KV) was significantly decreased in the hypertrophic smooth muscle cells and the voltage sensitivity of KV activation was altered. The sensitivity of KV currents (IKV) to TEA, a nonselective potassium channel blocker, increased significantly, but the sensitivity of IKv to 4-AP, a KV blocker, stays the same. The protein levels of KV4.3 and KV2.2 were up-regulated in the hypertrophic smooth muscle cell membrane. The serine and threonine phosphorylation levels of KV4.3 and KV2.2 were significantly increased in the hypertrophic smooth muscle cells. Thus this study represents the first identification of KV channel remodeling in murine small intestinal smooth muscle hypertrophy induced by partial obstruction. The enhanced phosphorylations of KV4.3 and KV2.2 may be involved in this process.

  17. [Role of voltage-dependent ion channels in epileptogenesis].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricard-Mousnier, B; Couraud, F

    1993-10-01

    The aim of this review is to gather information in favour of the involvement of voltage-dependent ion channels in epileptogenesis. Although, up to now, no study has shown that epilepsy is accompanied by a modification in the activity to these channels, the recently acquired knowledge of their physiology allows to presume would favor their involvement in epileptogenesis. The results from electrophysiological studies are as follows: a persistent sodium current increases neuronal excitability whereas potassium currents have an inhibitory role. In particular, calcium-dependent potassium current are involved in the post-hyperpolarization phases which follows PDS. Calcium currents are also involved in the genesis of the "bursting pacemaker" activity displayed by the neurons presumed to be inducers of the epileptic activity. Biochemical data has shown that as a consequence of epileptic activity, sodium and calcium channels are down regulated. This down-regulation could be a way to reduces neuronal hyperexcitability. Pharmacological data demonstrate the drugs which activate calcium channels or which inhibit potassium channels have a convusilvant effect. On the contrary, agents which block calcium or sodium channels or which properties. Among the latter ones, some antiepileptic drugs can be found. In summary situations which lead to increase in calcium and sodium currents and/or to an inhibition in potassium currents are potentially epileptogenic.

  18. Conductance hysteresis in the voltage-dependent anion channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rappaport, Shay M; Teijido, Oscar; Hoogerheide, David P; Rostovtseva, Tatiana K; Berezhkovskii, Alexander M; Bezrukov, Sergey M

    2015-09-01

    Hysteresis in the conductance of voltage-sensitive ion channels is observed when the transmembrane voltage is periodically varied with time. Although this phenomenon has been used in studies of gating of the voltage-dependent anion channel, VDAC, from the outer mitochondrial membrane for nearly four decades, full hysteresis curves have never been reported, because the focus was solely on the channel opening branches of the hysteresis loops. We studied the hysteretic response of a multichannel VDAC system to a triangular voltage ramp the frequency of which was varied over three orders of magnitude, from 0.5 mHz to 0.2 Hz. We found that in this wide frequency range the area encircled by the hysteresis curves changes by less than a factor of three, suggesting broad distribution of the characteristic times and strongly non-equilibrium behavior. At the same time, quasi-equilibrium two-state behavior is observed for hysteresis branches corresponding to VDAC opening. This enables calculation of the usual equilibrium gating parameters, gating charge and voltage of equipartitioning, which were found to be almost insensitive to the ramp frequency. To rationalize this peculiarity, we hypothesize that during voltage-induced closure and opening the system explores different regions of the complex free energy landscape, and, in the opening branch, follows quasi-equilibrium paths.

  19. Origin of the voltage dependence of G-protein regulation of P/Q-type Ca2+ channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yun; Chen, Yu-Hang; Bangaru, Saroja D; He, Linling; Abele, Kathryn; Tanabe, Shihori; Kozasa, Tohru; Yang, Jian

    2008-12-24

    G-protein (Gbetagamma)-mediated voltage-dependent inhibition of N- and P/Q-type Ca(2+) channels contributes to presynaptic inhibition and short-term synaptic plasticity. The voltage dependence derives from the dissociation of Gbetagamma from the inhibited channels, but the underlying molecular and biophysical mechanisms remain largely unclear. In this study we investigated the role in this process of Ca(2+) channel beta subunit (Ca(v)beta) and a rigid alpha-helical structure between the alpha-interacting domain (AID), the primary Ca(v)beta docking site on the channel alpha(1) subunit, and the pore-lining IS6 segment. Gbetagamma inhibition of P/Q-type channels was reconstituted in giant inside-out membrane patches from Xenopus oocytes. Large populations of channels devoid of Ca(v)beta were produced by washing out a mutant Ca(v)beta with a reduced affinity for the AID. These beta-less channels were still inhibited by Gbetagamma, but without any voltage dependence, indicating that Ca(v)beta is indispensable for voltage-dependent Gbetagamma inhibition. A truncated Ca(v)beta containing only the AID-binding guanylate kinase (GK) domain could fully confer voltage dependence to Gbetagamma inhibition. Gbetagamma did not alter inactivation properties, and channels recovered from Gbetagamma inhibition exhibited the same activation property as un-inhibited channels, indicating that Gbetagamma does not dislodge Ca(v)beta from the inhibited channel. Furthermore, voltage-dependent Gbetagamma inhibition was abolished when the rigid alpha-helix between the AID and IS6 was disrupted by insertion of multiple glycines, which also eliminated Ca(v)beta regulation of channel gating, revealing a pivotal role of this rigid alpha-helix in both processes. These results suggest that depolarization-triggered movement of IS6, coupled to the subsequent conformational change of the Gbetagamma-binding pocket through a rigid alpha-helix induced partly by the Ca(v)beta GK domain, causes the

  20. Cellular elements for seeing in the dark: voltage-dependent conductances in cockroach photoreceptors

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    Salmela Iikka

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The importance of voltage-dependent conductances in sensory information processing is well-established in insect photoreceptors. Here we present the characterization of electrical properties in photoreceptors of the cockroach (Periplaneta americana, a nocturnal insect with a visual system adapted for dim light. Results Whole-cell patch-clamped photoreceptors had high capacitances and input resistances, indicating large photosensitive rhabdomeres suitable for efficient photon capture and amplification of small photocurrents at low light levels. Two voltage-dependent potassium conductances were found in the photoreceptors: a delayed rectifier type (KDR and a fast transient inactivating type (KA. Activation of KDR occurred during physiological voltage responses induced by light stimulation, whereas KA was nearly fully inactivated already at the dark resting potential. In addition, hyperpolarization of photoreceptors activated a small-amplitude inward-rectifying (IR current mediated at least partially by chloride. Computer simulations showed that KDR shapes light responses by opposing the light-induced depolarization and speeding up the membrane time constant, whereas KA and IR have a negligible role in the majority of cells. However, larger KA conductances were found in smaller and rapidly adapting photoreceptors, where KA could have a functional role. Conclusions The relative expression of KA and KDR in cockroach photoreceptors was opposite to the previously hypothesized framework for dark-active insects, necessitating further comparative work on the conductances. In general, the varying deployment of stereotypical K+ conductances in insect photoreceptors highlights their functional flexibility in neural coding.

  1. Phosphorylation of purified mitochondrial Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel by c-Jun N-terminal Kinase-3 modifies channel voltage-dependence

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    Rajeev Gupta

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel (VDAC phosphorylated by c-Jun N-terminal Kinase-3 (JNK3 was incorporated into the bilayer lipid membrane. Single-channel electrophysiological properties of the native and the phosphorylated VDAC were compared. The open probability versus voltage curve of the native VDAC displayed symmetry around the voltage axis, whereas that of the phosphorylated VDAC showed asymmetry. This result indicates that phosphorylation by JNK3 modifies voltage-dependence of VDAC.

  2. The voltage dependence of Ih in human myelinated axons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howells, James; Trevillion, Louise; Bostock, Hugh; Burke, David

    2012-01-01

    HCN channels are responsible for Ih, a voltage-gated inwardly rectifying current activated by hyperpolarization. This current appears to be more active in human sensory axons than motor and may play a role in the determination of threshold. Differences in Ih are likely to be responsible for the high variability in accommodation to hyperpolarization seen in different subjects. The aim of this study was to characterise this current in human axons, both motor and sensory. Recordings of multiple axonal excitability properties were performed in 10 subjects, with a focus on the changes in threshold evoked by longer and stronger hyperpolarizing currents than normally studied. The findings confirm that accommodation to hyperpolarization is greater in sensory than motor axons in all subjects, but the variability between subjects was greater than the modality difference. An existing model of motor axons was modified to take into account the behaviour seen with longer and stronger hyperpolarization, and a mathematical model of human sensory axons was developed based on the data collected. The differences in behaviour of sensory and motor axons and the differences between different subjects are best explained by modulation of the voltage dependence, along with a modest increase of expression of the underlying conductance of Ih. Accommodation to hyperpolarization for the mean sensory data is fitted well with a value of −94.2 mV for the mid-point of activation (V0.5) of Ih as compared to −107.3 mV for the mean motor data. The variation in response to hyperpolarization between subjects is accounted for by varying this parameter for each modality (sensory: −89.2 to −104.2 mV; motor −87.3 to −127.3 mV). These voltage differences are within the range that has been described for physiological modulation of Ih function. The presence of slowly activated Ih isoforms on both motor and sensory axons was suggested by modelling a large internodal leak current and a masking of

  3. Smart Image Enhancement Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jobson, Daniel J. (Inventor); Rahman, Zia-ur (Inventor); Woodell, Glenn A. (Inventor)

    2012-01-01

    Contrast and lightness measures are used to first classify the image as being one of non-turbid and turbid. If turbid, the original image is enhanced to generate a first enhanced image. If non-turbid, the original image is classified in terms of a merged contrast/lightness score based on the contrast and lightness measures. The non-turbid image is enhanced to generate a second enhanced image when a poor contrast/lightness score is associated therewith. When the second enhanced image has a poor contrast/lightness score associated therewith, this image is enhanced to generate a third enhanced image. A sharpness measure is computed for one image that is selected from (i) the non-turbid image, (ii) the first enhanced image, (iii) the second enhanced image when a good contrast/lightness score is associated therewith, and (iv) the third enhanced image. If the selected image is not-sharp, it is sharpened to generate a sharpened image. The final image is selected from the selected image and the sharpened image.

  4. G Protein-induced Trafficking of Voltage-dependent Calcium Channels

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Eugene Tombler; Nory Jun Cabanilla; Paul Carman; Natasha Permaul; John J. Hall; Ryan W. Richman; Jessica Lee; Jennifer Rodriguez; Dan P. Felsenfeld; Robert F. Hennigan; María A. Diversé-Pierluissi

    2006-01-01

    .... Here we report a novel mechanism for G protein-mediated modulation of neuronal voltage-dependent calcium channels that involves the destabilization and subsequent removal of calcium channels from the plasma membrane...

  5. Analytical Model for Voltage-Dependent Photo and Dark Currents in Bulk Heterojunction Organic Solar Cells

    OpenAIRE

    2016-01-01

    A physics-based explicit mathematical model for the external voltage-dependent forward dark current in bulk heterojunction (BHJ) organic solar cells is developed by considering Shockley-Read-Hall (SRH) recombination and solving the continuity equations for both electrons and holes. An analytical model for the external voltage-dependent photocurrent in BHJ organic solar cells is also proposed by incorporating exponential photon absorption, dissociation efficiency of bound electron-hole pairs (...

  6. Pharmacology of the human red cell voltage-dependent cation channel Part I. Activation by clotrimazole and analogues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barksmann, Trine Lyberth; Kristensen, Berit I.; Christophersen, Palle.

    2004-01-01

    Human red cells, Nonselective voltage dependent cation channel, NSVDC channel, Gárdos channel blockers, NSVDC channel activators......Human red cells, Nonselective voltage dependent cation channel, NSVDC channel, Gárdos channel blockers, NSVDC channel activators...

  7. Enhanced processive cellulases

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adney, William S.; Beckham, Gregg T.; Jarvis, Eric; Himmel, Michael E.; Decker, Stephen R.; Linger, Jeffrey G.; Podkaminer, Kara; Baker, John O.; Taylor, II, Larry; Xu, Qi; Singh, Arjun

    2017-06-20

    Nucleic acid sequences encoding chimeric polypeptides that exhibit enhanced cellulase activities are disclosed herein. These nucleic acids may be expressed in hosts such as fungi, which in turn may be cultured to produce chimeric polypeptides. Also disclosed are chimeric polypeptides and their use in the degradation of cellulosic materials.

  8. Regulation of mitochondrial function by voltage dependent anion channels in ethanol metabolism and the Warburg effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemasters, John J; Holmuhamedov, Ekhson L; Czerny, Christoph; Zhong, Zhi; Maldonado, Eduardo N

    2012-06-01

    Voltage dependent anion channels (VDAC) are highly conserved proteins that are responsible for permeability of the mitochondrial outer membrane to hydrophilic metabolites like ATP, ADP and respiratory substrates. Although previously assumed to remain open, VDAC closure is emerging as an important mechanism for regulation of global mitochondrial metabolism in apoptotic cells and also in cells that are not dying. During hepatic ethanol oxidation to acetaldehyde, VDAC closure suppresses exchange of mitochondrial metabolites, resulting in inhibition of ureagenesis. In vivo, VDAC closure after ethanol occurs coordinately with mitochondrial uncoupling. Since acetaldehyde passes through membranes independently of channels and transporters, VDAC closure and uncoupling together foster selective and more rapid oxidative metabolism of toxic acetaldehyde to nontoxic acetate by mitochondrial aldehyde dehydrogenase. In single reconstituted VDAC, tubulin decreases VDAC conductance, and in HepG2 hepatoma cells, free tubulin negatively modulates mitochondrial membrane potential, an effect enhanced by protein kinase A. Tubulin-dependent closure of VDAC in cancer cells contributes to suppression of mitochondrial metabolism and may underlie the Warburg phenomenon of aerobic glycolysis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: VDAC structure, function, and regulation of mitochondrial metabolism.

  9. Over Expression of Voltage Dependent Anion Channel 2 (VDAC2 in Muscles of Electrically Stunned Chickens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norshahida Abu Samah, Azura Amid, and Faridah Yusof

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Water bath stunning is a common practice in commercial slaughterhouses. Such treatment is economic and in line with animal welfare practice. However, the conditions applied for the stunning process may vary from a slaughterhouse to another slaughterhouse. Such a loose regulation on the stunning procedure has opened up doors for food adulteration such as over dose stunning. In this study, a simple and reliable approach using proteomics have been developed to study the effect of different currents and voltages in stunning on the protein expression of the chickens. Protein profiles of the chickens were constructed in order to detect any differences in protein expression and modifications. The different voltage studied were 10 V, 40 V and 70 V while the values for current studied were 0.25 A, 0.5 A, and 0.75 A. After the proteomics analyses using 2D Platinum ImageMaster 6.0 and Matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization- time of flight (MALDI TOF spectrometry identification, Voltage dependent anion channel 2 (VDAC2 was identified to be over expressed in the muscle sample of over stunned chicken. The over expression of VDAC2 was confirmed at the transcriptional level of RNA expression. Real Time PCR showed that all over stunned samples contained higher mRNA expression level for VDAC2 genes. The mRNA level of VDAC2 was up-regulated by 59.87 fold change when normalized with housekeeping gene. In conclusion, VDAC2 could serve as potential biomarkers for identification of electrically stimulated chickens. The existence of these biomarkers will help to monitor the slaughtering and stunning process in the future. It will revolutionize the food authentication field and give a new breathe to the meat industry.ABSTRAK: Kaedah "waterbath stunning" merupakan amalan biasa di pusat-pusat penyembelihan. Kaedah ini adalah ekonomik dan selari dengan amalan kebajikan haiwan. Walaubagaimanapun, syarat-syarat yang digunakan untuk proses kejutan tersebut mungkin

  10. Voltage-dependent amplification of synaptic inputs in respiratory motoneurones

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Enríquez Denton, M; Wienecke, Jacob; Zhang, Mengliang

    2012-01-01

    of the inputs. Knowledge of these processes is important in understanding conditions such as motoneurone disease, or the spasticity that can follow spinal cord injury or stroke Respiration is a natural motor act that continues normally under experimental conditions, and this study investigated, for the first...

  11. Voltage dependence of proton pumping by bacteriorhodopsin mutants with altered lifetime of the M intermediate.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sven Geibel

    Full Text Available The light-driven proton pump bacteriorhodopsin (BR from Halobacterium salinarum is tightly regulated by the [H(+] gradient and transmembrane potential. BR exhibits optoelectric properties, since spectral changes during the photocycle are kinetically controlled by voltage, which predestines BR for optical storage or processing devices. BR mutants with prolonged lifetime of the blue-shifted M intermediate would be advantageous, but the optoelectric properties of such mutants are still elusive. Using expression in Xenopus oocytes and two-electrode voltage-clamping, we analyzed photocurrents of BR mutants with kinetically destabilized (F171C, F219L or stabilized (D96N, D96G M intermediate in response to green light (to probe H(+ pumping and blue laser flashes (to probe accumulation/decay of M. These mutants have divergent M lifetimes. As for BR-WT, this strictly correlates with the voltage dependence of H(+ pumping. BR-F171C and BR-F219L showed photocurrents similar to BR-WT. Yet, BR-F171C showed a weaker voltage dependence of proton pumping. For both mutants, blue laser flashes applied during and after green-light illumination showed reduced M accumulation and shorter M lifetime. In contrast, BR-D96G and BR-D96N exhibited small photocurrents, with nonlinear current-voltage curves, which increased strongly in the presence of azide. Blue laser flashes showed heavy M accumulation and prolonged M lifetime, which accounts for the strongly reduced H(+ pumping rate. Hyperpolarizing potentials augmented these effects. The combination of M-stabilizing and -destabilizing mutations in BR-D96G/F171C/F219L (BR-tri shows that disruption of the primary proton donor Asp-96 is fatal for BR as a proton pump. Mechanistically, M destabilizing mutations cannot compensate for the disruption of Asp-96. Accordingly, BR-tri and BR-D96G photocurrents were similar. However, BR-tri showed negative blue laser flash-induced currents even without actinic green light, indicating

  12. Pharmacological Investigation of Voltage-dependent Ca2+ Channels in Human Ejaculatory Sperm in vitro

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Lu; LIU Jihong; LI Jiagui; YE Zhangqun

    2006-01-01

    The types of the voltage-dependent calcium channels (VDCCs) in human ejaculatory sperm and the effects of calcium channel blocker (CCB) on human sperm motility parameters in vitro were investigated. The human sperm motility parameters in vitro in response to the pharmacological agents nifedipine (NIF, inhibitor of L-type VDCC) and ω-conotoxin (GVIA, inhibitor of N-type VDCC) were compared and analyzed statistically. The results showed that NIF (1, 5, 10 μmol/L)could not only significantly affect human sperm's shape but also spermatozoa motility after incubated at least 10 min in vitro (P<0.001). GVIA (0.1, 0.5 and 1 μmol/L) could just only significantly affect human sperm's progressive motility (a %+b %) after incubated for 20 min in vitro (P<0.01), but they both could not significantly affect spermic abnormality rate. It is suggested that L-type VDCC, non L-type VDCCs and isoform of L-type VDCC exist in the cell membrane of human sperm solely or together, and they participate in the spermic physiological processes especially the spermic motility.

  13. Vector spin modeling for magnetic tunnel junctions with voltage dependent effects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manipatruni, Sasikanth, E-mail: sasikanth.manipatruni@intel.com; Nikonov, Dmitri E.; Young, Ian A. [Exploratory Integrated Circuits, Components Research, Intel Corp., Hillsboro, Oregon 97124 (United States)

    2014-05-07

    Integration and co-design of CMOS and spin transfer devices requires accurate vector spin conduction modeling of magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) devices. A physically realistic model of the MTJ should comprehend the spin torque dynamics of nanomagnet interacting with an injected vector spin current and the voltage dependent spin torque. Vector spin modeling allows for calculation of 3 component spin currents and potentials along with the charge currents/potentials in non-collinear magnetic systems. Here, we show 4-component vector spin conduction modeling of magnetic tunnel junction devices coupled with spin transfer torque in the nanomagnet. Nanomagnet dynamics, voltage dependent spin transport, and thermal noise are comprehended in a self-consistent fashion. We show comparison of the model with experimental magnetoresistance (MR) of MTJs and voltage degradation of MR with voltage. Proposed model enables MTJ circuit design that comprehends voltage dependent spin torque effects, switching error rates, spin degradation, and back hopping effects.

  14. Novel expression and regulation of voltage-dependent potassium channels in placentas from women with preeclampsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mistry, Hiten D; McCallum, Laura A; Kurlak, Lesia O; Greenwood, Iain A; Broughton Pipkin, Fiona; Tribe, Rachel M

    2011-09-01

    Preeclampsia is associated with structural/functional alterations in placental and maternal vasculature. Voltage-dependant potassium channels encoded by KCNQ1-5 genes have been detected in several types of blood vessels where they promote vascular relaxation. Voltage-dependant potassium channel function can be modulated by KCNE1-5-encoded accessory proteins. The aim of this study was to determine whether KCNQ and KCNE genes are differentially expressed in placentas from women with preeclampsia compared with normotensive controls and to examine any differences in those who delivered preterm (voltage-dependant potassium channels are expressed and markedly modulated in placentas from preeclamptic women. Differential expression of isoforms may lead to altered cell proliferation. The correlation between KCNQ3 and KCNE5 expression is indicative of a novel channel complex and warrants further investigation.

  15. Poly(ethylene glycol-cholesterol inhibits L-type Ca2+ channel currents and augments voltage-dependent inactivation in A7r5 cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rikuo Ochi

    Full Text Available Cholesterol distributes at a high density in the membrane lipid raft and modulates ion channel currents. Poly(ethylene glycol cholesteryl ether (PEG-cholesterol is a nonionic amphipathic lipid consisting of lipophilic cholesterol and covalently bound hydrophilic PEG. PEG-cholesterol is used to formulate lipoplexes to transfect cultured cells, and liposomes for encapsulated drug delivery. PEG-cholesterol is dissolved in the external leaflet of the lipid bilayer, and expands it to flatten the caveolae and widen the gap between the two leaflets. We studied the effect of PEG-cholesterol on whole cell L-type Ca(2+ channel currents (I(Ca,L recorded from cultured A7r5 arterial smooth muscle cells. The pretreatment of cells with PEG-cholesterol decreased the density of ICa,L and augmented the voltage-dependent inactivation with acceleration of time course of inactivation and negative shift of steady-state inactivation curve. Methyl-β-cyclodextrin (MβCD is a cholesterol-binding oligosaccharide. The enrichment of cholesterol by the MβCD:cholesterol complex (cholesterol (MβCD caused inhibition of I(Ca,L but did not augment voltage-dependent inactivation. Incubation with MβCD increased I(Ca,L, slowed the time course of inactivation and shifted the inactivation curve to a positive direction. Additional pretreatment by a high concentration of MβCD of the cells initially pretreated with PEG-cholesterol, increased I(Ca,L to a greater level than the control, and removed the augmented voltage-dependent inactivation. Due to the enhancement of the voltage-dependent inactivation, PEG-cholesterol inhibited window I(Ca,L more strongly as compared with cholesterol (MβCD. Poly(ethylene glycol conferred to cholesterol the efficacy to induce sustained augmentation of voltage-dependent inactivation of I(Ca,L.

  16. Blockade of the voltage-dependent sodium current in isolated rat hippocampal neurons by tetrodotoxin and lidocaine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaneda, M; Oyama, Y; Ikemoto, Y; Akaike, N

    1989-04-10

    The effects of tetrodotoxin and lidocaine on the voltage-dependent sodium current (INa) were studied in the CA1 pyramidal neurons isolated acutely from rat hippocampus using a 'concentration-clamp' technique which combines the intracellular perfusion with a rapid external solution change within a few ms. Tetrodotoxin (TTX) exerted its inhibitory action in time- and dose-dependent manner on the peak amplitude of INa without any apparent effects on both the current activation and inactivation processes of the current. The time course for reaching a steady-state of the inhibitory action shortened with increasing TTX concentration, but the time course of recovery from the inhibition after washing out the toxin was quite the same at any concentrations used. Lidocaine also inhibited dose-dependently the INa, though with slightly accelerating both the activation and inactivation processes. The time courses for reaching the steady-state inhibition and the recovery from the inhibition were much shorter than those in the case of TTX. The results indicate that the voltage-dependent sodium channel of mammalian brain neuron is TTX-sensitive as well as that of peripheral neuron and that the mode of TTX inhibition on the INa is quite different from that of lidocaine.

  17. KCNQ1 Channels Voltage Dependence through a Voltage-dependent Binding of the S4-S5 Linker to the Pore Domain*

    OpenAIRE

    2010-01-01

    Voltage-dependent potassium (Kv) channels are tetramers of six transmembrane domain (S1–S6) proteins. Crystallographic data demonstrate that the tetrameric pore (S5–S6) is surrounded by four voltage sensor domains (S1–S4). One key question remains: how do voltage sensors (S4) regulate pore gating? Previous mutagenesis data obtained on the Kv channel KCNQ1 highlighted the critical role of specific residues in both the S4-S5 linker (S4S5L) and S6 C terminus (S6T). From these data, we hypothesiz...

  18. Eugenol dilates rat cerebral arteries by inhibiting smooth muscle cell voltage-dependent calcium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peixoto-Neves, Dieniffer; Leal-Cardoso, Jose Henrique; Jaggar, Jonathan H

    2014-11-01

    Plants high in eugenol, a phenylpropanoid compound, are used as folk medicines to alleviate diseases including hypertension. Eugenol has been demonstrated to relax conduit and ear arteries and reduce systemic blood pressure, but mechanisms involved are unclear. Here, we studied eugenol regulation of resistance-size cerebral arteries that control regional brain blood pressure and flow and investigated mechanisms involved. We demonstrate that eugenol dilates arteries constricted by either pressure or membrane depolarization (60 mM K) in a concentration-dependent manner. Experiments performed using patch-clamp electrophysiology demonstrated that eugenol inhibited voltage-dependent calcium (Ca) currents, when using Ba as a charge carrier, in isolated cerebral artery smooth muscle cells. Eugenol inhibition of voltage-dependent Ca currents involved pore block, a hyperpolarizing shift (∼-10 mV) in voltage-dependent inactivation, an increase in the proportion of steady-state inactivating current, and acceleration of inactivation rate. In summary, our data indicate that eugenol dilates cerebral arteries by means of multimodal inhibition of voltage-dependent Ca channels.

  19. Voltage-dependent currents in microvillar receptor cells of the frog vomeronasal organ.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trotier, D; Døving, K B; Rosin, J F

    1993-08-01

    Vomeronasal receptor cells are differentiated bipolar neurons with a long dendrite bearing numerous microvilli. Isolated cells (with a mean dendritic length of 65 microns) and cells in mucosal slices were studied using whole-cell and Nystatin-perforated patch-clamp recordings. At rest, the membrane potential was -61 +/- 13 mV (mean +/- SD; n = 61). Sixty-four per cent of the cells had a resting potential in the range of -60 to -86 mV, with almost no spontaneous action potential. The input resistance was in the G omega range and overshooting repetitive action potentials were elicited by injecting depolarizing current pulses in the range of 2-10 pA. Voltage-dependent currents were characterized under voltage-clamp conditions. A transient fast inward current activating near -45 mV was blocked by tetrodotoxin. In isolated cells, it was half-deactivated at a membrane potential near -75 mV. An outward K+ current was blocked by internal Cs+ ions or by external tetraethylammonium or Ba2+ ions. A calcium-activated voltage-dependent potassium current was blocked by external Cd2+ ions. A voltage-dependent Ca2+ current was observed in an iso-osmotic BaCl2 solution. Finally, a hyperpolarization-activated inward current was recorded. Voltage-dependent currents in these microvillar olfactory receptor neurons appear qualitatively similar to those already described in ciliated olfactory receptor cells located in the principal olfactory epithelium.

  20. Reversal of HCN channel voltage dependence via bridging of the S4-S5 linker and Post-S6.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prole, David L; Yellen, Gary

    2006-09-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels possess charged domains that move in response to changes in transmembrane voltage. How this movement is transduced into gating of the channel pore is largely unknown. Here we show directly that two functionally important regions of the spHCN1 pacemaker channel, the S4-S5 linker and the C-linker, come into close proximity during gating. Cross-linking these regions with high-affinity metal bridges or disulfide bridges dramatically alters channel gating in the absence of cAMP; after modification the polarity of voltage dependence is reversed. Instead of being closed at positive voltage and activating with hyperpolarization, modified channels are closed at negative voltage and activate with depolarization. Mechanistically, this reversal of voltage dependence occurs as a result of selectively eliminating channel deactivation, while retaining an existing inactivation process. Bridging also alters channel activation by cAMP, showing that interaction of these two regions can also affect the efficacy of physiological ligands.

  1. Calmodulin and calcium differentially regulate the neuronal Nav1.1 voltage-dependent sodium channel

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gaudioso, Christelle; Carlier, Edmond; Youssouf, Fahamoe [INSERM U641, Institut Jean Roche, Marseille F-13344 (France); Universite de la Mediterranee, Faculte de Medecine Secteur Nord, IFR 11, Marseille F-13344 (France); Clare, Jeffrey J. [Eaton Pharma Consulting, Eaton Socon, Cambridgeshire PE19 8EF (United Kingdom); Debanne, Dominique [INSERM U641, Institut Jean Roche, Marseille F-13344 (France); Universite de la Mediterranee, Faculte de Medecine Secteur Nord, IFR 11, Marseille F-13344 (France); Alcaraz, Gisele, E-mail: gisele.alcaraz@univmed.fr [INSERM U641, Institut Jean Roche, Marseille F-13344 (France); Universite de la Mediterranee, Faculte de Medecine Secteur Nord, IFR 11, Marseille F-13344 (France)

    2011-07-29

    Highlights: {yields} Both Ca{sup ++}-Calmodulin (CaM) and Ca{sup ++}-free CaM bind to the C-terminal region of Nav1.1. {yields} Ca{sup ++} and CaM have both opposite and convergent effects on I{sub Nav1.1}. {yields} Ca{sup ++}-CaM modulates I{sub Nav1.1} amplitude. {yields} CaM hyperpolarizes the voltage-dependence of activation, and increases the inactivation rate. {yields} Ca{sup ++} alone antagonizes CaM for both effects, and depolarizes the voltage-dependence of inactivation. -- Abstract: Mutations in the neuronal Nav1.1 voltage-gated sodium channel are responsible for mild to severe epileptic syndromes. The ubiquitous calcium sensor calmodulin (CaM) bound to rat brain Nav1.1 and to the human Nav1.1 channel expressed by a stably transfected HEK-293 cell line. The C-terminal region of the channel, as a fusion protein or in the yeast two-hybrid system, interacted with CaM via a consensus C-terminal motif, the IQ domain. Patch clamp experiments on HEK1.1 cells showed that CaM overexpression increased peak current in a calcium-dependent way. CaM had no effect on the voltage-dependence of fast inactivation, and accelerated the inactivation kinetics. Elevating Ca{sup ++} depolarized the voltage-dependence of fast inactivation and slowed down the fast inactivation kinetics, and for high concentrations this effect competed with the acceleration induced by CaM alone. Similarly, the depolarizing action of calcium antagonized the hyperpolarizing shift of the voltage-dependence of activation due to CaM overexpression. Fluorescence spectroscopy measurements suggested that Ca{sup ++} could bind the Nav1.1 C-terminal region with micromolar affinity.

  2. Vestibular integrator neurons have quadratic functions due to voltage dependent conductances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magnani, Christophe; Eugène, Daniel; Idoux, Erwin; Moore, Lee E

    2013-12-01

    The nonlinear properties of the dendrites of the prepositus hypoglossi nucleus (PHN) neurons are essential for the operation of the vestibular neural integrator that converts a head velocity signal to one that controls eye position. A novel system of frequency probing, namely quadratic sinusoidal analysis (QSA), was used to decode the intrinsic nonlinear behavior of these neurons under voltage clamp conditions. Voltage clamp currents were measured at harmonic and interactive frequencies using specific nonoverlapping stimulation frequencies. Eigenanalysis of the QSA matrix reduces it to a remarkably compact processing unit, composed of just one or two dominant components (eigenvalues). The QSA matrix of rat PHN neurons provides signatures of the voltage dependent conductances for their particular dendritic and somatic distributions. An important part of the nonlinear response is due to the persistent sodium conductance (gNaP), which is likely to be essential for sustained effects needed for a neural integrator. It was found that responses in the range of 10 mV peak to peak could be well described by quadratic nonlinearities suggesting that effects of higher degree nonlinearities would add only marginal improvement. Therefore, the quadratic response is likely to sufficiently capture most of the nonlinear behavior of neuronal systems except for extremely large synaptic inputs. Thus, neurons have two distinct linear and quadratic functions, which shows that piecewise linear + quadratic analysis is much more complete than just piecewise linear analysis; in addition quadratic analysis can be done at a single holding potential. Furthermore, the nonlinear neuronal responses contain more frequencies over a wider frequency band than the input signal. As a consequence, they convert limited amplitude and bandwidth input signals to wider bandwidth and more complex output responses. Finally, simulations at subthreshold membrane potentials with realistic PHN neuron models

  3. Localization and pharmacological characterization of voltage dependent calcium channels in cultured neocortical neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Timmermann, D B; Lund, T M; Belhage, B

    2001-01-01

    using the fluorescent calcium chelator fura-2. The types of calcium channels present at the synaptic terminal were determined by the inhibitory action of calcium channel blockers on potassium-induced [3H]GABA release in the same cell preparation. L-, N-, P-, Q- and R-/T-type voltage dependent calcium...... channels were differentially distributed in somata, neurites and nerve terminals. omega-conotoxin MVIIC (omega-CgTx MVIIC) inhibited approximately 40% of the Ca(2+)-rise in both somata and neurites and 60% of the potassium induced [3H]GABA release, indicating that the Q-type channel is the quantitatively...... in cytosolic calcium concentration. The results of this investigation demonstrate that pharmacologically distinct types of voltage dependent calcium channels are differentially localized in cell bodies, neurites and nerve terminals of mouse cortical neurons but that the Q-type calcium channel appears...

  4. Lavender Oil-Potent Anxiolytic Properties via Modulating Voltage Dependent Calcium Channels

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    Recent clinical data support the clinical use of oral lavender oil in patients suffering from subsyndromal anxiety. We identified the molecular mechanism of action that will alter the perception of lavender oil as a nonspecific ingredient of aromatherapy to a potent anxiolytic inhibiting voltage dependent calcium channels (VOCCs) as highly selective drug target. In contrast to previous publications where exorbitant high concentrations were used, the effects of lavender oil in behavioral, bioc...

  5. Zn2+ regulates Kv2.1 voltage-dependent gating and localization following ischemia

    OpenAIRE

    Aras, Mandar A.; Saadi, Robert A.; Aizenman, Elias

    2009-01-01

    The delayed-rectifier K+ channel Kv2.1 exists in highly phosphorylated somatodendritic clusters. Ischemia induces rapid Kv2.1 dephosphorylation and a dispersal of these clusters, accompanied by a hyperpolarizing shift in their voltage-dependent activation kinetics. Transient modulation of Kv2.1 activity and localization following ischemia is dependent on a rise in intracellular Ca2+and the protein phosphatase calcineurin. Here, we show that neuronal free Zn2+also plays a critical role in the ...

  6. Development of voltage-dependent calcium, sodium, and potassium currents in Xenopus spinal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Dowd, D K; Ribera, A B; Spitzer, N C

    1988-03-01

    Action potentials of embryonic nerve and muscle cells often have a different ionic dependence and longer duration than those of mature cells. The action potential of spinal cord neurons from Xenopus laevis exhibits a prominent calcium component at early stages of development that diminishes with age as the impulse becomes principally sodium dependent. Whole-cell voltage-clamp analysis has been undertaken to characterize the changes in membrane currents during development of these neurons in culture. Four voltage-dependent currents of cells were identified and examined during the first day in vitro, when most of the change in the action potential occurs. There are no changes in the peak density of the calcium current (ICa), its voltage dependence, or time to half-maximal activation; a small increase in inactivation is apparent. The major change in sodium current (INa) is a 2-fold increase in its density. In addition, more subtle changes in the kinetics of the macroscopic sodium current were noted. The peak density of voltage-dependent potassium current (IKv) increases 3-fold, and this current becomes activated almost twice as fast. No changes were noted in the extent of its inactivation. The calcium-dependent potassium current (IKc) consists of an inactivating and a sustained component. The former increases 2-fold in peak current density, and the latter increases similarly at less depolarized voltages. The changes in these currents contribute to the decrease in duration and the change in ionic dependence of the impulse.

  7. Voltage dependence of Na translocation by the Na/K pump.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakao, M; Gadsby, D C

    During each complete reaction cycle, the Na/K pump transports three Na ions out across the cell membrane and two K ions in. The resulting net extrusion of positive charge generates outward membrane current but, until now, it was unclear how that net charge movement occurs. Reasonable possibilities included a single positive charge moving outwards during Na translocation; or a single negative charge moving inwards during K translocation; or either positive or negative charges moving during both translocation steps, but in unequal quantities. Any step that involves net charge movement through the membrane must have voltage-dependent transition rates. Here we report measurements of transient, voltage-dependent, displacement currents generated by the pump when its normal Na/K transport cycle has been interrupted by removal of external K and it is thus constrained to carry out Na/Na exchange. The quantity and voltage sensitivity of the charge moved during these transient currents suggests that Na translocation includes a voltage-dependent transition involving movement of one positive charge across the membrane. This single step can thus fully account for the electrogenic nature of Na/K exchange. The result provides important new insight into the molecular mechanism of active cation transport.

  8. Hypotonicity activates a voltage-dependent membrane conductance in N2a neuroblastoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taruno, Akiyuki; Marunaka, Yoshinori

    2017-03-04

    To maintain cellular and bodily homeostasis, cells respond to extracellular stimuli including osmotic stress by activating various ion channels, which have been implicated in many physiological and pathophysiological conditions. However, cellular osmosensory mechanisms remain elusive. Here, we report a novel voltage-dependent current in N2a cells activated by exposure to hypotonic stress. After a hypotonic challenge, N2a cells sequentially develop two distinct currents. The volume-regulated anion channel (VRAC) current emerges first and, after a delay, activation of a previously uncharacterized strongly outwardly rectifying current follows. The latter, delayed current (Id) is insensitive to NPPB, a nonspecific blocker of Cl(-) channels, and intracellular Mg(2+), which inhibits VRAC and swelling-activated TRPM3 and TRPM7 channels. Replacement of extracellular Na(+) with NMDG(+) reduces inward tail currents, suggesting that Id is mediated by cations. Finally, Id shows voltage-dependent activation with slow activation kinetics and half-maximal activation at +76 mV. These pharmacological and biophysical characteristics of Id are distinct from those of known osmotic cell swelling-activated ion channels. In conclusion, our data identify and characterize a novel osmotically-activated, voltage-dependent ion channel in N2a cells.

  9. Endocytic regulation of voltage-dependent potassium channels in the heart.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishii, Kuniaki; Norota, Ikuo; Obara, Yutaro

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the regulation of cardiac ion channels is critical for the prevention of arrhythmia caused by abnormal excitability. Ion channels can be regulated by a change in function (qualitative) and a change in number (quantitative). Functional changes have been extensively investigated for many ion channels including cardiac voltage-dependent potassium channels. By contrast, the regulation of ion channel numbers has not been widely examined, particularly with respect to acute modulation of ion channels. This article briefly summarizes stimulus-induced endocytic regulation of major voltage-dependent potassium channels in the heart. The stimuli known to cause their endocytosis include receptor activation, drugs, and low extracellular [K(+)], following which the potassium channels undergo either clathrin-mediated or caveolin-mediated endocytosis. Receptor-mediated endocytic regulation has been demonstrated for Kv1.2, Kv1.5, KCNQ1 (Kv7.1), and Kv4.3, while drug-induced endocytosis has been demonstrated for Kv1.5 and hERG. Low [K(+)](o)-induced endocytosis might be unique for hERG channels, whose electrophysiological characteristics are known to be under strong influence of [K(+)](o). Although the precise mechanisms have not been elucidated, it is obvious that major cardiac voltage-dependent potassium channels are modulated by endocytosis, which leads to changes in cardiac excitability.

  10. Voltage dependence of Hodgkin-Huxley rate functions for a multistage K+ channel voltage sensor within a membrane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaccaro, S. R.

    2014-11-01

    The activation of a K+channel sensor in two sequential stages during a voltage clamp may be described as the translocation of a Brownian particle in an energy landscape with two large barriers between states. A solution of the Smoluchowski equation for a square-well approximation to the potential function of the S4 voltage sensor satisfies a master equation and has two frequencies that may be determined from the forward and backward rate functions. When the higher-frequency terms have small amplitude, the solution reduces to the relaxation of a rate equation, where the derived two-state rate functions are dependent on the relative magnitude of the forward rates (α and γ ) and the backward rates (β and δ ) for each stage. In particular, the voltage dependence of the Hodgkin-Huxley rate functions for a K+channel may be derived by assuming that the rate functions of the first stage are large relative to those of the second stage—α ≫γ and β ≫δ . For a Shaker IR K+ channel, the first forward and backward transitions are rate limiting (α <γ and δ ≪β ), and for an activation process with either two or three stages, the derived two-state rate functions also have a voltage dependence that is of a similar form to that determined for the squid axon. The potential variation generated by the interaction between a two-stage K+ ion channel and a noninactivating Na+ ion channel is determined by the master equation for K+channel activation and the ionic current equation when the Na+channel activation time is small, and if β ≪δ and α ≪γ , the system may exhibit a small amplitude oscillation between spikes, or mixed-mode oscillation, in which the slow closed state modulates the K+ ion channel conductance in the membrane.

  11. KCNQ1 channels voltage dependence through a voltage-dependent binding of the S4-S5 linker to the pore domain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choveau, Frank S; Rodriguez, Nicolas; Abderemane Ali, Fayal; Labro, Alain J; Rose, Thierry; Dahimène, Shehrazade; Boudin, Hélène; Le Hénaff, Carole; Escande, Denis; Snyders, Dirk J; Charpentier, Flavien; Mérot, Jean; Baró, Isabelle; Loussouarn, Gildas

    2011-01-07

    Voltage-dependent potassium (Kv) channels are tetramers of six transmembrane domain (S1-S6) proteins. Crystallographic data demonstrate that the tetrameric pore (S5-S6) is surrounded by four voltage sensor domains (S1-S4). One key question remains: how do voltage sensors (S4) regulate pore gating? Previous mutagenesis data obtained on the Kv channel KCNQ1 highlighted the critical role of specific residues in both the S4-S5 linker (S4S5(L)) and S6 C terminus (S6(T)). From these data, we hypothesized that S4S5(L) behaves like a ligand specifically interacting with S6(T) and stabilizing the closed state. To test this hypothesis, we designed plasmid-encoded peptides corresponding to portions of S4S5(L) and S6(T) of the voltage-gated potassium channel KCNQ1 and evaluated their effects on the channel activity in the presence and absence of the ancillary subunit KCNE1. We showed that S4S5(L) peptides inhibit KCNQ1, in a reversible and state-dependent manner. S4S5(L) peptides also inhibited a voltage-independent KCNQ1 mutant. This inhibition was competitively prevented by a peptide mimicking S6(T), consistent with S4S5(L) binding to S6(T). Val(254) in S4S5(L) is known to contact Leu(353) in S6(T) when the channel is closed, and mutations of these residues alter the coupling between the two regions. The same mutations introduced in peptides altered their effects, further confirming S4S5(L) binding to S6(T). Our results suggest a mechanistic model in which S4S5(L) acts as a voltage-dependent ligand bound to its receptor on S6 at rest. This interaction locks the channel in a closed state. Upon plasma membrane depolarization, S4 pulls S4S5(L) away from S6(T), allowing channel opening.

  12. Voltage-dependent metabolic regulation of Kv2.1 channels in pancreatic beta-cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Masashi; Nakata, Masanori; Yamato, Shiho; Dezaki, Katsuya; Sugawara, Hitoshi; Ishikawa, San-e; Kawakami, Masanobu; Yada, Toshihiko; Kakei, Masafumi

    2010-05-28

    Voltage-gated potassium channels (Kv channels) play a crucial role in formation of action potentials in response to glucose stimulation in pancreatic beta-ells. We previously reported that the Kv channel is regulated by glucose metabolism, particularly by MgATP. We examined whether the regulation of Kv channels is voltage-dependent and mechanistically related with phosphorylation of the channels. In rat pancreatic beta-cells, suppression of glucose metabolism with low glucose concentrations of 2.8mM or less or by metabolic inhibitors decreased the Kv2.1-channel activity at positive membrane potentials, while increased it at potentials negative to -10 mV, suggesting that modulation of Kv channels by glucose metabolism is voltage-dependent. Similarly, in HEK293 cells expressing the recombinant Kv2.1 channels, 0mM but not 10mM MgATP modulated the channel activity in a manner similar to that in beta-cells. Both steady-state activation and inactivation kinetics of the channel were shifted toward the negative potential in association with the voltage-dependent modulation of the channels by cytosolic dialysis of alkaline phosphatase in beta-cells. The modulation of Kv-channel current-voltage relations were also observed during and after glucose-stimulated electrical excitation. These results suggest that the cellular metabolism including MgATP production and/or channel phosphorylation/dephosphorylation underlie the physiological modulation of Kv2.1 channels during glucose-induced insulin secretion.

  13. Purification and Characterization of Two Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel Isoforms from Plant Seeds1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrecht, Helge; Wattiez, Ruddy; Ruysschaert, Jean-Marie; Homblé, Fabrice

    2000-01-01

    Mitochondria were isolated from imbibed seeds of lentil (Lens culinaris) and Phaseolus vulgaris. We copurified two voltage-dependent anion channel from detergent solubilized mitochondria in a single purification step using hydroxyapatite. The two isoforms from P. vulgaris were separated by chromatofocusing chromatography in 4 m urea without any loss of channel activity. Channel activity of each isoform was characterized upon reconstitution into diphytanoyl phosphatidylcholine planar lipid bilayers. Both isoforms form large conductance channels that are slightly anion selective and display cation selective substates. PMID:11080295

  14. Admittance Spectroscopy in CZTSSe: Metastability Behavior and Voltage Dependent Defect Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koeper, Mark J.; Hages, Charles J.; Li, Jian V.; Levi, Dean; Agrawal, Rakesh

    2016-11-21

    Admittance spectroscopy has been performed on a CZTSSe device with a carrier injection pretreatment and under electronically relaxed conditions to demonstrate metastability behavior. We show that the measurements with the carrier injection pretreatment demonstrate two admittance signatures while the relaxed measurement demonstrates only one admittance signature with a different activation energy. Additionally, voltage dependent admittance spectroscopy was performed using the carrier injection pretreatment method at each of the applied voltage bias. The activation energies of the two admittance signatures were calculated and are shown to be independent of the voltage bias.

  15. Analytical Model for Voltage-Dependent Photo and Dark Currents in Bulk Heterojunction Organic Solar Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mesbahus Saleheen

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A physics-based explicit mathematical model for the external voltage-dependent forward dark current in bulk heterojunction (BHJ organic solar cells is developed by considering Shockley-Read-Hall (SRH recombination and solving the continuity equations for both electrons and holes. An analytical model for the external voltage-dependent photocurrent in BHJ organic solar cells is also proposed by incorporating exponential photon absorption, dissociation efficiency of bound electron-hole pairs (EHPs, carrier trapping, and carrier drift and diffusion in the photon absorption layer. Modified Braun’s model is used to compute the electric field-dependent dissociation efficiency of the bound EHPs. The overall net current is calculated considering the actual solar spectrum. The mathematical models are verified by comparing the model calculations with various published experimental results. We analyze the effects of the contact properties, blend compositions, charge carrier transport properties (carrier mobility and lifetime, and cell design on the current-voltage characteristics. The power conversion efficiency of BHJ organic solar cells mostly depends on electron transport properties of the acceptor layer. The results of this paper indicate that improvement of charge carrier transport (both mobility and lifetime and dissociation of bound EHPs in organic blend are critically important to increase the power conversion efficiency of the BHJ solar cells.

  16. Voltage dependence of rate functions for Na+ channel inactivation within a membrane

    CERN Document Server

    Vaccaro, Samuel R

    2015-01-01

    The inactivation of a Na+ channel occurs when the activation of the charged S4 segment of domain IV, with rate functions $\\alpha_{i}$ and $\\beta_{i}$, is followed by the binding of an intracellular hydrophobic motif which blocks conduction through the ion pore, with rate functions $\\gamma_{i}$ and $\\delta_{i}$. During a voltage clamp of the Na+ channel, the solution of the master equation for inactivation reduces to the relaxation of a rate equation when the binding of the inactivation motif is rate limiting ($\\alpha_{i} \\gg \\gamma_{i}$ and $\\beta_{i} \\gg \\delta_{i}$). The voltage dependence of the derived forward rate function for Na+ channel inactivation has an exponential dependence on the membrane potential for small depolarizations and approaches a constant value for larger depolarizations, whereas the voltage dependence of the backward rate function is exponential, and each rate has a similar form to the Hodgkin-Huxley empirical rate functions for Na+ channel inactivation in the squid axon.

  17. The Eag domain regulates the voltage-dependent inactivation of rat Eag1 K+ channels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ting-Feng Lin

    Full Text Available Eag (Kv10 and Erg (Kv11 belong to two distinct subfamilies of the ether-à-go-go K+ channel family (KCNH. While Erg channels are characterized by an inward-rectifying current-voltage relationship that results from a C-type inactivation, mammalian Eag channels display little or no voltage-dependent inactivation. Although the amino (N-terminal region such as the eag domain is not required for the C-type inactivation of Erg channels, an N-terminal deletion in mouse Eag1 has been shown to produce a voltage-dependent inactivation. To further discern the role of the eag domain in the inactivation of Eag1 channels, we generated N-terminal chimeras between rat Eag (rEag1 and human Erg (hERG1 channels that involved swapping the eag domain alone or the complete cytoplasmic N-terminal region. Functional analyses indicated that introduction of the homologous hERG1 eag domain led to both a fast phase and a slow phase of channel inactivation in the rEag1 chimeras. By contrast, the inactivation features were retained in the reverse hERG1 chimeras. Furthermore, an eag domain-lacking rEag1 deletion mutant also showed the fast phase of inactivation that was notably attenuated upon co-expression with the rEag1 eag domain fragment, but not with the hERG1 eag domain fragment. Additionally, we have identified a point mutation in the S4-S5 linker region of rEag1 that resulted in a similar inactivation phenotype. Biophysical analyses of these mutant constructs suggested that the inactivation gating of rEag1 was distinctly different from that of hERG1. Overall, our findings are consistent with the notion that the eag domain plays a critical role in regulating the inactivation gating of rEag1. We propose that the eag domain may destabilize or mask an inherent voltage-dependent inactivation of rEag1 K+ channels.

  18. Inhibition of rat hippocampal excitability by the plant alkaloid 3-acetylaconitine mediated by interaction with voltage-dependent sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ameri, A

    1997-02-01

    The effects of the Aconitum alkaloid 3-acetylaconitine on neuronal activity were investigated in the slice preparation and on cultivated neurons of rat hippocampus by extracellular and patch-clamp recordings, respectively. 3-Acetylaconitine (0.01-1 microM) diminished the orthodromic and antidromic population spike in a concentration-dependent manner. The inhibitory action of the drug was preceded by a transiently enhanced excitability. The latency of onset of the inhibition was accelerated by increased stimulation frequency, whereas recovery during washout of the alkaloid was accelerated by decreased stimulation frequency. Moreover, the inhibitory effect of 3-acetylaconitine was evaluated in two different models of epileptiform activity induced either by blockade of GABA receptors by bicuculline (10 microM) or by a nominal Mg(2+)-free bathing medium. In accordance with the activity-dependent mode of action, this compound abolished the synaptically evoked population spikes in the presence of bicuculline or nominal Mg(2+)-free bathing medium, respectively. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings revealed an interaction of 3-acetylaconitine with the voltage-dependent sodium channel. At a concentration of 1 microM, 3-acetylaconitine did not affect the peak amplitude of the sodium current, but shifted the current-voltage relationship in the hyperpolarized direction such that sodium currents were already activated at the resting potential.

  19. Decreases of voltage-dependent K+ currents densities in ventricular myocytes of guinea pigs by chronic oxidant stress

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    De-li DONG; Yan LIU; Yu-hong ZHOU; Wei-hua SONG; He WANG; Bao-feng YANG

    2004-01-01

    AIM: To determine the changes of delayed rectifier K+ currents (Ik) and inward rectifier K+ currents (Ik1) in the ventricular myocytes of guinea pigs during the gradual apoptotic process by the chronic oxidant stress treatment.METHODS: H2O250 μmol/L (24 h) was used for inducing apoptosis in the cardiomyocytes culture of neonatal rats and to treat the isolated ventricular myocytes of adult guinea pigs in vitro for 24 h. Apoptosis was evaluated by TUNEL methods and voltage-dependent K+ currents were recorded by patch-clamp techniques. RESULTS: H2O250 μmol/L (24 h) induced cell apoptosis in the cardiomyocytes culture of neonatal rats. This concentration was used to treat the isolated ventricular myocytes of adult guinea pigs in vitro for 24 h and the voltage-dependent K+currents densities (Ik, Ik1) were down-regulated. The densities of the delayed rectifier K+ currents (Ik) in 50 μmol/L H2O2 group were 2.52±0.57 pA/pF vs 5.73±1.84 pA/pF in the control group at +50 mV (n=8, P<0.01). The densities of the inward rectifier K+ currents (Ik1) in 50 μmol/L H2O2 group were -13.9±2.70 pA/pF, 2.52±0.57 pA/pF vs -59.7± 11.9 pA/pF, 5.73± 1.84 pA/pF in the control group at -120 mV (n=8, P<0.01) and -40 mV (n=8, P<0.05), respectively. The extent of inward rectifier property of Ik1 was weakened by 50μmol/L H2O2 treatment. CONCLUSION: The densities of Ik, Ik1 in the cardiomyocytes of guinea pigs were downregulated and the inward rectifier property of Ik1 was weakened during the gradual apoptotic process after 50 μmol/L H2O2 treatment for 24 h.

  20. Voltage-dependent K+ currents contribute to heterogeneity of olfactory ensheathing cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rela, Lorena; Piantanida, Ana Paula; Bordey, Angelique; Greer, Charles A.

    2015-01-01

    The olfactory nerve is permissive for axon growth throughout life. This has been attributed in part to the olfactory ensheathing glial cells that encompass the olfactory sensory neuron fascicles. Olfactory ensheathing cells also promote axon growth in vitro and when transplanted in vivo to sites of injury. The mechanisms involved remain largely unidentified owing in part to the limited knowledge of the physiological properties of ensheathing cells. Glial cells rely for many functions on the properties of the potassium channels expressed; however, those expressed in ensheathing cells are unknown. Here we show that olfactory ensheathing cells express voltage-dependent potassium currents compatible with inward rectifier (Kir) and delayed rectifier (KDR) channels. Together with gap junction coupling, these contribute to the heterogeneity of membrane properties observed in olfactory ensheathing cells. The relevance of K+ currents expressed by ensheathing cells is discussed in relation to plasticity of the olfactory nerve. PMID:25856239

  1. Selective modulation of cellular voltage dependent calcium channels by hyperbaric pressure - a suggested HPNS partial mechanism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben eAviner

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Professional deep sea divers experience motor and cognitive impairment, known as High Pressure Neurological Syndrome (HPNS, when exposed to pressures of 100 msw (1.1MPa and above, considered to be the result of synaptic transmission alteration. Previous studies have indicated modulation of presynaptic Ca2+ currents at high pressure. We directly measured for the first time pressure effects on the currents of voltage dependent Ca2+ channels (VDCCs expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Pressure selectivity augmented the current in CaV1.2 and depressed it in CaV3.2 channels. Pressure application also affected the channels' kinetics, such as ƮRise, ƮDecay. Pressure modulation of VDCCs seems to play an important role in generation of HPNS signs and symptoms.

  2. G protein-induced trafficking of voltage-dependent calcium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tombler, Eugene; Cabanilla, Nory Jun; Carman, Paul; Permaul, Natasha; Hall, John J; Richman, Ryan W; Lee, Jessica; Rodriguez, Jennifer; Felsenfeld, Dan P; Hennigan, Robert F; Diversé-Pierluissi, María A

    2006-01-20

    Calcium channels are well known targets for inhibition by G protein-coupled receptors, and multiple forms of inhibition have been described. Here we report a novel mechanism for G protein-mediated modulation of neuronal voltage-dependent calcium channels that involves the destabilization and subsequent removal of calcium channels from the plasma membrane. Imaging experiments in living sensory neurons show that, within seconds of receptor activation, calcium channels are cleared from the membrane and sequestered in clathrin-coated vesicles. Disruption of the L1-CAM-ankyrin B complex with the calcium channel mimics transmitter-induced trafficking of the channels, reduces calcium influx, and decreases exocytosis. Our results suggest that G protein-induced removal of plasma membrane calcium channels is a consequence of disrupting channel-cytoskeleton interactions and might represent a novel mechanism of presynaptic inhibition.

  3. The Mechanism of Voltage Dependent Gating of the NaChBac Prokaryotic Sodium Channel

    Science.gov (United States)

    Decaen, Paul G.

    Electrical signaling in cells depends on selective conductance of ions through membrane proteins called 'voltage gated ion channels'. These channels are characterized by their ability turn on and off the flow of ionic current by opening and closing their conductive pore in response to changes in membrane potential. The opening and closing of the pore is a mechanically linked to conformational movement of the positively charged fourth transmembrane segment (S4) in 'the voltage sensor' region. How the S4 moves in response to membrane potential is a controversial subject. In this thesis, we used the prokaryotic sodium channel NaChBac as our model sodium channel to study voltage dependent movement of the S4 in the voltage sensor. We use a disulfide-locking method where we introduced pairs of cysteines in the voltage sensor that crosslink and trap the S4 in its path after depolarization. We screened over one hundred mutations of the NaChBac channel in the whole cell patch clamp assay and demonstrated discrete and sequential voltage dependent ion pair interactions that occur in at least three states between the positively charged residues of the S4 segment and the acidic residues in the S1, S2 and S3 segments. In conjunction with structural modeling of the voltage sensor and our disulfide locking data, we propose that the S4 moves in and out of the plane of the membrane 8-13 A, forming distinct gating charge interactions with counter charges of the voltage sensor and adopts a 310 helix over a portion of its structure during activation. These findings are compatible with the sliding helix model and refine our understanding of the structural determinates of voltage sensor function in voltage gated ion channels.

  4. Correlation character of ionic current fluctuations: analysis of ion current through a voltage-dependent potassium single channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong-Han, Lan; Huang, Xi; Jia-Rui, Lin

    2005-10-03

    The gating of ion channels has widely been modeled by assuming the transition between open and closed states is a memoryless process. Nevertheless, the statistical analysis of an ionic current signal recorded from voltage dependence K(+) single channel is presented. Calculating the sample auto-correlation function of the ionic current based on the digitized signals, rather than the sequence of open and closed states duration time. The results provide evidence for the existence of memory. For different voltages, the ion channel current fluctuation has different correlation attributions. The correlations in data generated by simulation of two Markov models, on one hand, auto-correlation function of the ionic current shows a weaker memory, after a delayed period of time, the attribute of memory does not exist; on the other hand, the correlation depends on the number of states in the Markov model. For V(p)=-60 mV pipette potential, spectral analysis of ion channel current was conducted, the result indicates that the spectrum is not a flat spectrum, the data set from ionic current fluctuations shows considerable variability with a broad 1/f -like spectrum, alpha=1.261+/-0.24. Thus the ion current fluctuations give information about the kinetics of the channel protein, the results suggest the correlation character of ion channel protein nonlinear kinetics regardless of whether the channel is in open or closed state.

  5. The voltage-dependent K+ channels Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 in human cancer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comes, Núria; Bielanska, Joanna; Vallejo-Gracia, Albert; Serrano-Albarrás, Antonio; Marruecos, Laura; Gómez, Diana; Soler, Concepció; Condom, Enric; Ramón y Cajal, Santiago; Hernández-Losa, Javier; Ferreres, Joan C.; Felipe, Antonio

    2013-01-01

    Voltage-dependent K+ channels (Kv) are involved in a number of physiological processes, including immunomodulation, cell volume regulation, apoptosis as well as differentiation. Some Kv channels participate in the proliferation and migration of normal and tumor cells, contributing to metastasis. Altered expression of Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 channels has been found in several types of tumors and cancer cells. In general, while the expression of Kv1.3 apparently exhibits no clear pattern, Kv1.5 is induced in many of the analyzed metastatic tissues. Interestingly, evidence indicates that Kv1.5 channel shows inversed correlation with malignancy in some gliomas and non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. However, Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 are similarly remodeled in some cancers. For instance, expression of Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 correlates with a certain grade of tumorigenicity in muscle sarcomas. Differential remodeling of Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 expression in human cancers may indicate their role in tumor growth and their importance as potential tumor markers. However, despite of this increasing body of information, which considers Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 as emerging tumoral markers, further research must be performed to reach any conclusion. In this review, we summarize what it has been lately documented about Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 channels in human cancer. PMID:24133455

  6. The voltage-dependent K(+) channels Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 in human cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Comes, Núria; Bielanska, Joanna; Vallejo-Gracia, Albert; Serrano-Albarrás, Antonio; Marruecos, Laura; Gómez, Diana; Soler, Concepció; Condom, Enric; Ramón Y Cajal, Santiago; Hernández-Losa, Javier; Ferreres, Joan C; Felipe, Antonio

    2013-10-10

    Voltage-dependent K(+) channels (Kv) are involved in a number of physiological processes, including immunomodulation, cell volume regulation, apoptosis as well as differentiation. Some Kv channels participate in the proliferation and migration of normal and tumor cells, contributing to metastasis. Altered expression of Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 channels has been found in several types of tumors and cancer cells. In general, while the expression of Kv1.3 apparently exhibits no clear pattern, Kv1.5 is induced in many of the analyzed metastatic tissues. Interestingly, evidence indicates that Kv1.5 channel shows inversed correlation with malignancy in some gliomas and non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. However, Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 are similarly remodeled in some cancers. For instance, expression of Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 correlates with a certain grade of tumorigenicity in muscle sarcomas. Differential remodeling of Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 expression in human cancers may indicate their role in tumor growth and their importance as potential tumor markers. However, despite of this increasing body of information, which considers Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 as emerging tumoral markers, further research must be performed to reach any conclusion. In this review, we summarize what it has been lately documented about Kv1.3 and Kv1.5 channels in human cancer.

  7. Probing the gate--voltage-dependent surface potential of individual InAs nanowires using random telegraph signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salfi, Joe; Paradiso, Nicola; Roddaro, Stefano; Heun, Stefan; Nair, Selvakumar V; Savelyev, Igor G; Blumin, Marina; Beltram, Fabio; Ruda, Harry E

    2011-03-22

    We report a novel method for probing the gate-voltage dependence of the surface potential of individual semiconductor nanowires. The statistics of electronic occupation of a single defect on the surface of the nanowire, determined from a random telegraph signal, is used as a measure for the local potential. The method is demonstrated for the case of one or two switching defects in indium arsenide (InAs) nanowire field effect transistors at temperatures T=25-77 K. Comparison with a self-consistent model shows that surface potential variation is retarded in the conducting regime due to screening by surface states with density Dss≈10(12) cm(-2) eV(-1). Temperature-dependent dynamics of electron capture and emission producing the random telegraph signals are also analyzed, and multiphonon emission is identified as the process responsible for capture and emission of electrons from the surface traps. Two defects studied in detail had capture activation energies of EB≈50 meV and EB≈110 meV and cross sections of σ∞≈3×10(-19) cm2 and σ∞≈2×10(-17) cm2, respectively. A lattice relaxation energy of Sℏω=187±15 meV was found for the first defect.

  8. PIP2 regulation of KCNQ channels: biophysical and molecular mechanisms for lipid modulation of voltage-dependent gating

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Alan Zaydman

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Voltage-gated potassium (Kv channels contain voltage-sensing (VSD and pore-gate (PGD structural domains. During voltage-dependent gating, conformational changes in the two domains are coupled giving rise to voltage-dependent opening of the channel. In addition to membrane voltage, KCNQ (Kv7 channel opening requires the membrane lipid phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2. Recent studies suggest that PIP2 serves as a cofactor to mediate VSD-PGD coupling in KCNQ1 channels. In this review, we put these findings in the context of the current understanding of voltage-dependent gating, lipid modulation of Kv channel activation, and PIP2-regulation of KCNQ channels. We suggest that lipid-mediated coupling of functional domains is a common mechanism among KCNQ channels that may be applicable to other Kv channels and membrane proteins.

  9. PIP2 regulation of KCNQ channels: biophysical and molecular mechanisms for lipid modulation of voltage-dependent gating.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaydman, Mark A; Cui, Jianmin

    2014-01-01

    Voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels contain voltage-sensing (VSD) and pore-gate (PGD) structural domains. During voltage-dependent gating, conformational changes in the two domains are coupled giving rise to voltage-dependent opening of the channel. In addition to membrane voltage, KCNQ (Kv7) channel opening requires the membrane lipid phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2). Recent studies suggest that PIP2 serves as a cofactor to mediate VSD-PGD coupling in KCNQ1 channels. In this review, we put these findings in the context of the current understanding of voltage-dependent gating, lipid modulation of Kv channel activation, and PIP2-regulation of KCNQ channels. We suggest that lipid-mediated coupling of functional domains is a common mechanism among KCNQ channels that may be applicable to other Kv channels and membrane proteins.

  10. Charged Residues at the First Transmembrane Region Contribute to the Voltage Dependence of the Slow Gate of Connexins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Bernardo I; García, Isaac E; Pupo, Amaury; Retamal, Mauricio A; Martínez, Agustín D; Latorre, Ramón; González, Carlos

    2016-07-22

    Connexins (Cxs) are a family of membrane-spanning proteins that form gap junction channels and hemichannels. Connexin-based channels exhibit two distinct voltage-dependent gating mechanisms termed slow and fast gating. Residues located at the C terminus of the first transmembrane segment (TM-1) are important structural components of the slow gate. Here, we determined the role of the charged residues at the end of TM-1 in voltage sensing in Cx26, Cx46, and Cx50. Conductance/voltage curves obtained from tail currents together with kinetics analysis reveal that the fast and slow gates of Cx26 involves the movement of two and four charges across the electric field, respectively. Primary sequence alignment of different Cxs shows the presence of well conserved glutamate residues in the C terminus of TM-1; only Cx26 contains a lysine in that position (lysine 41). Neutralization of lysine 41 in Cx26 increases the voltage dependence of the slow gate. Swapping of lysine 41 with glutamate 42 maintains the voltage dependence. In Cx46, neutralization of negative charges or addition of a positive charge in the Cx26 equivalent region reduced the slow gate voltage dependence. In Cx50, the addition of a glutamate in the same region decreased the voltage dependence, and the neutralization of a negative charge increased it. These results indicate that the charges at the end of TM-1 are part of the slow gate voltage sensor in Cxs. The fact that Cx42, which has no charge in this region, still presents voltage-dependent slow gating suggests that charges still unidentified also contribute to the slow gate voltage sensitivity.

  11. Cortisone dissociates voltage-dependent K+ channel from its beta subunit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Yaping; Weng, Jun; Kabaleeswaran, Venkataraman; Li, Huiguang; Cao, Yu; Bhosle, Rahul C.; Zhou, Ming

    2009-01-01

    The Shaker family voltage-dependent potassium channels (Kv1) are expressed in a wide variety of cells and essential for cellular excitability. In humans, loss-of-function mutations of Kv1 channels lead to hyperexcitability and are directly linked to episodic ataxia and atrial fibrillation. All Kv1 channels assemble with beta subunits (Kvβ) and certain Kvβs, for example Kvβ1, have an N-terminal segment that closes a channel by the N-type inactivation mechanism. In principle dissociation of Kvβ1, although never reported, should eliminate inactivation and thus potentiate Kv1 current. We found that cortisone increases mammalian (rat) Kv1 channel activity by binding to Kvβ1. A crystal structure of the Kvβ-cortisone complex was solved to 1.82 Å resolution and revealed novel cortisone binding sites. Further studies demonstrated that cortisone promotes dissociation of Kvβ. The new mode of channel modulation may be explored by native or synthetic ligands to fine tune cellular excitability. PMID:18806782

  12. RAS-RAF-MEK-dependent oxidative cell death involving voltage-dependent anion channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yagoda, Nicholas; von Rechenberg, Moritz; Zaganjor, Elma; Bauer, Andras J; Yang, Wan Seok; Fridman, Daniel J; Wolpaw, Adam J; Smukste, Inese; Peltier, John M; Boniface, J Jay; Smith, Richard; Lessnick, Stephen L; Sahasrabudhe, Sudhir; Stockwell, Brent R

    2007-06-14

    Therapeutics that discriminate between the genetic makeup of normal cells and tumour cells are valuable for treating and understanding cancer. Small molecules with oncogene-selective lethality may reveal novel functions of oncoproteins and enable the creation of more selective drugs. Here we describe the mechanism of action of the selective anti-tumour agent erastin, involving the RAS-RAF-MEK signalling pathway functioning in cell proliferation, differentiation and survival. Erastin exhibits greater lethality in human tumour cells harbouring mutations in the oncogenes HRAS, KRAS or BRAF. Using affinity purification and mass spectrometry, we discovered that erastin acts through mitochondrial voltage-dependent anion channels (VDACs)--a novel target for anti-cancer drugs. We show that erastin treatment of cells harbouring oncogenic RAS causes the appearance of oxidative species and subsequent death through an oxidative, non-apoptotic mechanism. RNA-interference-mediated knockdown of VDAC2 or VDAC3 caused resistance to erastin, implicating these two VDAC isoforms in the mechanism of action of erastin. Moreover, using purified mitochondria expressing a single VDAC isoform, we found that erastin alters the permeability of the outer mitochondrial membrane. Finally, using a radiolabelled analogue and a filter-binding assay, we show that erastin binds directly to VDAC2. These results demonstrate that ligands to VDAC proteins can induce non-apoptotic cell death selectively in some tumour cells harbouring activating mutations in the RAS-RAF-MEK pathway.

  13. Functional unit size of the neurotoxin receptors on the voltage-dependent sodium channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelides, K J; Nutter, T J; Elmer, L W; Kempner, E S

    1985-03-25

    Radiation inactivation was used in situ to determine the functional unit sizes of the neurotoxin receptors of the voltage-dependent sodium channel from rat brain. Frozen or lyophilized synaptosomes were irradiated with high energy electrons generated by a linear accelerator and assayed for [3H]saxitoxin, 125I-Leiurus quinquestriatus quinquestriatus (alpha-scorpion toxin), 125I-Centruroides suffusus suffusus (beta-scorpion toxin), and batrachotoxinin-A 20 alpha-[3H]benzoate binding activity. The functional unit size of the neurotoxin receptors determined in situ by target analysis are 220,000 for saxitoxin, 263,000 for alpha-scorpion toxin, and 45,000 for beta-scorpion toxin. Analysis of the inactivation curve for batrachotoxinin-A 20 alpha-benzoate binding to the channel yields two target sizes of Mr approximately 287,000 (50%) and approximately 51,000 (50%). The results are independent of the purity of the membrane preparation. Comparison of the radiation inactivation data with the protein composition of the rat brain sodium channel indicates that there are at least two functional components.

  14. Voltage-dependent Ca2+ channel and Na+ channel in frog taste cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kashiwayanagi, M; Miyake, M; Kurihara, K

    1983-01-01

    Frog taste cells were hyperpolarized by injecting an inward current pulse, and regenerative anode-break potentials were observed at the termination of the current pulse. The results obtained are as follows. 1) The magnitude of the anode-break potentials increased with the extent of hyperpolarization of taste cells and reached a saturation level around -200 mV. 2) The magnitudes of the anode-break potentials observed in 80 different taste cells hyperpolarized to about -200 mV were distributed widely from cell to cell. The average magnitude was 39 mV. 3) The anode-break potentials were recorded after the lingual artery was perfused with artificial solutions containing various channel blockers. The results indicated that the anode-break potentials are composed of Na+ and Ca2+ components. 4) The slope of the current-voltage relation obtained with cells hyperpolarized to 100 mV was appreciably decreased above -50 mV by application of tetrodotoxin to the perfusing solution. Discussion was made on possible roles of the voltage-dependent Na+ and Ca2+ channels in the electrotonic spreading of the depolarization at the receptor membranes to the synaptic area and in releasing a chemical transmitter.

  15. Tetrahydroacridine inhibits voltage-dependent Na+ current in guinea-pig ventricular myocytes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wei WANG; Yi-ping WANG; Guo-yuan HU

    2004-01-01

    AIM: To study the effects of tetrahydroacridine (tacrine) on voltage-gated Na+ channels in cardiac tissues.METHODS: Single ventricular myocytes were enzymatically dissociated from adult guinea-pig heart. Voltagedependent Na+ current was recorded using whole cell voltage-clamp technique. RESULTS: (1) Tacrine reversibly inhibited Na+ current with an IC50 value of 120 μmol/L (95 % confidence range: 108-133 μmol/L). (2) The inhibitory effects of tacrine on Na+ current exhibited both a tonic nature and use-dependence. (3) Tacrine at 100 μmol/L caused a negative shift (about 10 mV) in the voltage-dependence of steady-state inactivation of Na+ current, and retarded its recovery from inactivation, but did not affect its activation curve. (4) Intracellular application of tacrine significantly inhibited Na+ current. CONCLUSION: In addition to blocking other voltage-gated ion channels,tacrine blocked Na+ channels in guinea-pig ventricular myocytes. Tactine acted as inactivation stabilizer of Na+channels in cardiac tissues.

  16. Regulation of KV channel voltage-dependent activation by transmembrane β subunits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaohui eSun

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Voltage-activated K+ (KV channels are important for shaping action potentials and maintaining resting membrane potential in excitable cells. KV channels contain a central pore-gate domain (PGD surrounded by four voltage-sensing domains (VSD. The VSDs will change conformation in response to alterations of the membrane potential thereby inducing the opening of the PGD. Many KV channels are heteromeric protein complexes containing auxiliary β subunits. These β subunits modulate channel expression and activity to increase functional diversity and render tissue specific phenotypes. This review focuses on the KV β subunits that contain transmembrane (TM segments including the KCNE family and the β subunits of large conductance, Ca2+- and voltage-activated K+ (BK channels. These TM β subunits affect the voltage-dependent activation of KV α subunits. Experimental and computational studies have described the structural location of these β subunits in the channel complexes and the biophysical effects on VSD activation, PGD opening and VSD-PGD coupling. These results reveal some common characteristics and mechanistic insights into KV channel modulation by TM β subunits.

  17. The human red cell voltage-dependent cation channel. Part III: Distribution homogeneity and pH dependence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bennekou, P.; Barksmann, T. L.; Christophersen, P.

    2006-01-01

    The homogeneity of the distribution of the non-selective voltage-dependent cation channel (the NSVDC channel) in the human erythrocyte, and the pH dependence was investigated. Activation of this channel caused a uniform cellular dehydration, which was characterized by the changes in the erythrocyte...

  18. VOLTAGE-DEPENDENT SODIUM AND POTASSIUM, BUT NO CALCIUM CONDUCTANCES IN DDT1 MF-2 SMOOTH-MUSCLE CELLS

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    MOLLEMAN, A; NELEMANS, A; VANDENAKKER, J; DUIN, M; DENHERTOG, A

    1991-01-01

    Voltage-dependent inward and outward membrane currents were investigated in the DDT1 MF-2 smooth muscle cell line using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique. Application of a pulse protocol with subsequent depolarizing voltage steps elicited an inactivating inward current and a non-inactivating outw

  19. Lavender oil-potent anxiolytic properties via modulating voltage dependent calcium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuwald, Anita M; Nöldner, Michael; Wilmes, Thomas; Klugbauer, Norbert; Leuner, Kristina; Müller, Walter E

    2013-01-01

    Recent clinical data support the clinical use of oral lavender oil in patients suffering from subsyndromal anxiety. We identified the molecular mechanism of action that will alter the perception of lavender oil as a nonspecific ingredient of aromatherapy to a potent anxiolytic inhibiting voltage dependent calcium channels (VOCCs) as highly selective drug target. In contrast to previous publications where exorbitant high concentrations were used, the effects of lavender oil in behavioral, biochemical, and electrophysiological experiments were investigated in physiological concentrations in the nanomolar range, which correlate to a single dosage of 80 mg/d in humans that was used in clinical trials. We show for the first time that lavender oil bears some similarities with the established anxiolytic pregabalin. Lavender oil inhibits VOCCs in synaptosomes, primary hippocampal neurons and stably overexpressing cell lines in the same range such as pregabalin. Interestingly, Silexan does not primarily bind to P/Q type calcium channels such as pregabalin and does not interact with the binding site of pregabalin, the α2δ subunit of VOCCs. Lavender oil reduces non-selectively the calcium influx through several different types of VOCCs such as the N-type, P/Q-type and T-type VOCCs. In the hippocampus, one brain region important for anxiety disorders, we show that inhibition by lavender oil is mainly mediated via N-type and P/Q-type VOCCs. Taken together, we provide a pharmacological and molecular rationale for the clinical use of the oral application of lavender oil in patients suffering from anxiety.

  20. Lavender oil-potent anxiolytic properties via modulating voltage dependent calcium channels.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita M Schuwald

    Full Text Available Recent clinical data support the clinical use of oral lavender oil in patients suffering from subsyndromal anxiety. We identified the molecular mechanism of action that will alter the perception of lavender oil as a nonspecific ingredient of aromatherapy to a potent anxiolytic inhibiting voltage dependent calcium channels (VOCCs as highly selective drug target. In contrast to previous publications where exorbitant high concentrations were used, the effects of lavender oil in behavioral, biochemical, and electrophysiological experiments were investigated in physiological concentrations in the nanomolar range, which correlate to a single dosage of 80 mg/d in humans that was used in clinical trials. We show for the first time that lavender oil bears some similarities with the established anxiolytic pregabalin. Lavender oil inhibits VOCCs in synaptosomes, primary hippocampal neurons and stably overexpressing cell lines in the same range such as pregabalin. Interestingly, Silexan does not primarily bind to P/Q type calcium channels such as pregabalin and does not interact with the binding site of pregabalin, the α2δ subunit of VOCCs. Lavender oil reduces non-selectively the calcium influx through several different types of VOCCs such as the N-type, P/Q-type and T-type VOCCs. In the hippocampus, one brain region important for anxiety disorders, we show that inhibition by lavender oil is mainly mediated via N-type and P/Q-type VOCCs. Taken together, we provide a pharmacological and molecular rationale for the clinical use of the oral application of lavender oil in patients suffering from anxiety.

  1. Voltage-dependent modulation of cardiac ryanodine receptors (RyR2 by protamine.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula L Diaz-Sylvester

    Full Text Available It has been reported that protamine (>10 microg/ml blocks single skeletal RyR1 channels and inhibits RyR1-mediated Ca2+ release from sarcoplasmic reticulum microsomes. We extended these studies to cardiac RyR2 reconstituted into planar lipid bilayers. We found that protamine (0.02-20 microg/ml added to the cytosolic surface of fully activated RyR2 affected channel activity in a voltage-dependent manner. At membrane voltage (V(m; SR lumen-cytosol = 0 mV, protamine induced conductance transitions to several intermediate states (substates as well as full block of RyR2. At V(m>10 mV, the substate with the highest level of conductance was predominant. Increasing V(m from 0 to +80 mV, decreased the number of transitions and residence of the channel in this substate. The drop in current amplitude (full opening to substate had the same magnitude at 0 and +80 mV despite the approximately 3-fold increase in amplitude of the full opening. This is more similar to rectification of channel conductance induced by other polycations than to the action of selective conductance modifiers (ryanoids, imperatoxin. A distinctive effect of protamine (which might be shared with polylysines and histones but not with non-peptidic polycations is the activation of RyR2 in the presence of nanomolar cytosolic Ca2+ and millimolar Mg2+ levels. Our results suggest that RyRs would be subject to dual modulation (activation and block by polycationic domains of neighboring proteins via electrostatic interactions. Understanding these interactions could be important as such anomalies may be associated with the increased RyR2-mediated Ca2+ leak observed in cardiac diseases.

  2. Thiazolidinedione insulin sensitizers alter lipid bilayer properties and voltage-dependent sodium channel function: implications for drug discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rusinova, Radda; Herold, Karl F; Sanford, R Lea; Greathouse, Denise V; Hemmings, Hugh C; Andersen, Olaf S

    2011-08-01

    The thiazolidinediones (TZDs) are used in the treatment of diabetes mellitus type 2. Their canonical effects are mediated by activation of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) transcription factor. In addition to effects mediated by gene activation, the TZDs cause acute, transcription-independent changes in various membrane transport processes, including glucose transport, and they alter the function of a diverse group of membrane proteins, including ion channels. The basis for these off-target effects is unknown, but the TZDs are hydrophobic/amphiphilic and adsorb to the bilayer-water interface, which will alter bilayer properties, meaning that the TZDs may alter membrane protein function by bilayer-mediated mechanisms. We therefore explored whether the TZDs alter lipid bilayer properties sufficiently to be sensed by bilayer-spanning proteins, using gramicidin A (gA) channels as probes. The TZDs altered bilayer elastic properties with potencies that did not correlate with their affinity for PPARγ. At concentrations where they altered gA channel function, they also altered the function of voltage-dependent sodium channels, producing a prepulse-dependent current inhibition and hyperpolarizing shift in the steady-state inactivation curve. The shifts in the inactivation curve produced by the TZDs and other amphiphiles can be superimposed by plotting them as a function of the changes in gA channel lifetimes. The TZDs' partition coefficients into lipid bilayers were measured using isothermal titration calorimetry. The most potent bilayer modifier, troglitazone, alters bilayer properties at clinically relevant free concentrations; the least potent bilayer modifiers, pioglitazone and rosiglitazone, do not. Unlike other TZDs tested, ciglitazone behaves like a hydrophobic anion and alters the gA monomer-dimer equilibrium by more than one mechanism. Our results provide a possible mechanism for some off-target effects of an important group of drugs, and

  3. Voltage-dependent changes in specific membrane capacitance caused by prestin, the outer hair cell lateral membrane motor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos-Sacchi, Joseph; Navarrete, Enrique

    2002-05-01

    In the outer hair cell (OHC), membrane capacitance principally derives from two components - that associated with lateral membrane sensor/motor charge movement, and that proportional to the membrane surface area (C(sa)). We used measures of membrane capacitance to test a model hypothesis that OHC lateral membrane molecular motors, recently identified as the protein prestin, fluctuate between two area states. By measuring membrane capacitance in native OHCs or prestin-transfected HEK cells at extreme voltages (+/-200 mV) where motor-derived charge movement is small or absent, we observed that C(sa) depends on the state of the motors, or correspondingly on membrane voltage. Deiters cells or control HEK cells, which lack motors, do not show this dependence. We modeled the voltage-dependent change in C(sa) as a Boltzmann process with the same parameters that describe the charge movement of the motors' voltage sensors. C(sa) is 3.28+/-0.75 pF (mean +/-SD; n=23) larger during extreme hyperpolarization, and the number of motors in OHCs and prestin-transfected HEK cells correlates with the magnitude of Delta C(sa)( r=0.78). Although these data are consistent with the area motor model, the corresponding area change, assuming 0.5 microF/cm(2) under constant membrane thickness, is unphysiologically large, and indicates that the capacitance change must result from changes not only in lateral membrane area but also specific capacitance. Thus, we conclude that a conformational change in the lateral membrane motor, prestin, additionally alters the dielectric constant and/or thickness of the lateral plasma membrane.

  4. Ropivacaine-Induced Contraction Is Attenuated by Both Endothelial Nitric Oxide and Voltage-Dependent Potassium Channels in Isolated Rat Aortae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seong-Ho Ok

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated endothelium-derived vasodilators and potassium channels involved in the modulation of ropivacaine-induced contraction. In endothelium-intact rat aortae, ropivacaine concentration-response curves were generated in the presence or absence of the following inhibitors: the nonspecific nitric oxide synthase (NOS inhibitor Nω-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME, the neuronal NOS inhibitor Nω-propyl-L-arginine hydrochloride, the inducible NOS inhibitor 1400W dihydrochloride, the nitric oxide-sensitive guanylyl cyclase (GC inhibitor ODQ, the NOS and GC inhibitor methylene blue, the phosphoinositide-3 kinase inhibitor wortmannin, the cytochrome p450 epoxygenase inhibitor fluconazole, the voltage-dependent potassium channel inhibitor 4-aminopyridine (4-AP, the calcium-activated potassium channel inhibitor tetraethylammonium (TEA, the inward-rectifying potassium channel inhibitor barium chloride, and the ATP-sensitive potassium channel inhibitor glibenclamide. The effect of ropivacaine on endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS phosphorylation in human umbilical vein endothelial cells was examined by western blotting. Ropivacaine-induced contraction was weaker in endothelium-intact aortae than in endothelium-denuded aortae. L-NAME, ODQ, and methylene blue enhanced ropivacaine-induced contraction, whereas wortmannin, Nω-propyl-L-arginine hydrochloride, 1400W dihydrochloride, and fluconazole had no effect. 4-AP and TEA enhanced ropivacaine-induced contraction; however, barium chloride and glibenclamide had no effect. eNOS phosphorylation was induced by ropivacaine. These results suggest that ropivacaine-induced contraction is attenuated primarily by both endothelial nitric oxide and voltage-dependent potassium channels.

  5. Effects of arsenic trioxide on voltage-dependent potassium channels and on cell proliferation of human multiple myeloma cells

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHOU Jin; WANG Wei; WEI Qing-fang; FENG Tie-ming; TAN Li-jun; YANG Bao-feng

    2007-01-01

    @@ Arsenic trioxide (ATO) can induce cellular apoptosis and inhibit the activities of multiple myeloma (MM)cells in vitro,1 but how it works is not very clear. Recent studies showed that ATO worked on the voltagedependent potassium channel and L-type calcium channel in myocardial cells,2-5 but the effect of ATO on ion channels of tumor cells was rarely reported. As the potassium channel plays an important role in controlling cell proliferation,6 we studied the effects of ATO on the voltage-dependent potassium current (Ikv) of the voltage-dependent potassium channel in an MM cell line,and probed into the relationship between changes of the Ikv caused by ATO and cell proliferation.

  6. Distribution of voltage-dependent and intracellular Ca2+ channels in submucosal neurons from rat distal colon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rehn, Matthias; Bader, Sandra; Bell, Anna; Diener, Martin

    2013-09-01

    We recently observed a bradykinin-induced increase in the cytosolic Ca2+ concentration in submucosal neurons of rat colon, an increase inhibited by blockers of voltage-dependent Ca2+ (Ca(v)) channels. As the types of Ca(v) channels used by this part of the enteric nervous system are unknown, the expression of various Ca(v) subunits has been investigated in whole-mount submucosal preparations by immunohistochemistry. Submucosal neurons, identified by a neuronal marker (microtubule-associated protein 2), are immunoreactive for Ca(v)1.2, Ca(v)1.3 and Ca(v)2.2, expression being confirmed by reverse transcription plus the polymerase chain reaction. These data agree with previous observations that the inhibition of L- and N-type Ca2+ currents strongly inhibits the response to bradykinin. However, whole-cell patch-clamp experiments have revealed that bradykinin does not enhance Ca2+ inward currents under voltage-clamp conditions. Consequently, bradykinin does not directly interact with Ca(v) channels. Instead, the kinin-induced Ca2+ influx is caused indirectly by the membrane depolarization evoked by this peptide. As intracellular Ca2+ channels on Ca(2+)-storing organelles can also contribute to Ca2+ signaling, their expression has been investigated by imaging experiments and immunohistochemistry. Inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) receptors (IP3R) have been functionally demonstrated in submucosal neurons loaded with the Ca(2+)-sensitive fluorescent dye, fura-2. Histamine, a typical agonist coupled to the phospholipase C pathway, induces an increase in the fura-2 signal ratio, which is suppressed by 2-aminophenylborate, a blocker of IP3 receptors. The expression of IP3R1 has been confirmed by immunohistochemistry. In contrast, ryanodine, tested over a wide concentration range, evokes no increase in the cytosolic Ca2+ concentration nor is there immunohistochemical evidence for the expression of ryanodine receptors in these neurons. Thus, rat submucosal neurons are equipped

  7. State-dependent FRET reports calcium- and voltage-dependent gating-ring motions in BK channels

    OpenAIRE

    Miranda, Pablo; Contreras, Jorge E.; Plested, Andrew J. R.; Sigworth, Fred J.; Holmgren, Miguel; Giraldez, Teresa

    2013-01-01

    Large-conductance voltage- and calcium-dependent potassium channels (BK, “Big K+”) are important controllers of cell excitability. In the BK channel, a large C-terminal intracellular region containing a “gating-ring” structure has been proposed to transduce Ca2+ binding into channel opening. Using patch-clamp fluorometry, we have investigated the calcium and voltage dependence of conformational changes of the gating-ring region of BK channels, while simultaneously monitoring channel conductan...

  8. VOLTAGE STABILITY ASSESSMENT FOR WIND FARMS INTEGRATION INTO ELECTRICITY GRIDS WITH AND WITHOUT CONSIDERATION OF VOLTAGE DEPENDENT LOADS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TOMA R.

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents a comparative study between the effects on voltage stability of the integration of a wind farm into the electricity grid with or without voltage dependent loads in the context of different locations of a synchronous compensator from the grid. The P-V curves are built by using the PowerFactory DigSilent 15.2.2 and a DPL script that implements a simplified form of the Continuation Power Flow method.

  9. The action of a phorbol ester on voltage-dependent parameters of the sodium current in isolated hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chizhmakov, I V; Klee, M R

    1994-03-01

    The action of a phorbol ester (phorbol-12,13-diacetate) on the voltage-activated sodium current has been investigated by the voltage-clamp method in acutely isolated pyramidal neurons from rat hippocampus. The intracellular perfusion of isolated pyramidal neurons for 30-40 min induced a gradual 10-15 mV shift in both the current-voltage relationship and voltage-dependent steady-state inactivation to more negative potentials. The application of phorbol ester (1-10 microM) to isolated neurons for the same time increased the amplitude of sodium current by 15-20%, shifted the above-mentioned voltage-dependent parameters for an additional 10-15 mV in the same direction and changed the slope of the steady-state inactivation curve. In contrast, after prolonged incubation of slices in the phorbol ester-containing solution (1-10 microM) for 0.5-3 h, subsequent application of phorbol ester at the same concentration caused neither the addition shift of the voltage-dependent characteristics of sodium channels nor the change of the slope of the steady-state inactivation curve. However, in this case an increase in the amplitude of sodium current by 15-20% during 30-40 min intracellular perfusion was observed.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  10. Phosphoinositide 5- and 3-phosphatase activities of a voltage-sensing phosphatase in living cells show identical voltage dependence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keum, Dongil; Kruse, Martin; Kim, Dong-Il; Hille, Bertil; Suh, Byung-Chang

    2016-06-28

    Voltage-sensing phosphatases (VSPs) are homologs of phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN), a phosphatidylinositol 3,4-bisphosphate [PI(3,4)P2] and phosphatidylinositol 3,4,5-trisphosphate [PI(3,4,5)P3] 3-phosphatase. However, VSPs have a wider range of substrates, cleaving 3-phosphate from PI(3,4)P2 and probably PI(3,4,5)P3 as well as 5-phosphate from phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PI(4,5)P2] and PI(3,4,5)P3 in response to membrane depolarization. Recent proposals say these reactions have differing voltage dependence. Using Förster resonance energy transfer probes specific for different PIs in living cells with zebrafish VSP, we quantitate both voltage-dependent 5- and 3-phosphatase subreactions against endogenous substrates. These activities become apparent with different voltage thresholds, voltage sensitivities, and catalytic rates. As an analytical tool, we refine a kinetic model that includes the endogenous pools of phosphoinositides, endogenous phosphatase and kinase reactions connecting them, and four exogenous voltage-dependent 5- and 3-phosphatase subreactions of VSP. We show that apparent voltage threshold differences for seeing effects of the 5- and 3-phosphatase activities in cells are not due to different intrinsic voltage dependence of these reactions. Rather, the reactions have a common voltage dependence, and apparent differences arise only because each VSP subreaction has a different absolute catalytic rate that begins to surpass the respective endogenous enzyme activities at different voltages. For zebrafish VSP, our modeling revealed that 3-phosphatase activity against PI(3,4,5)P3 is 55-fold slower than 5-phosphatase activity against PI(4,5)P2; thus, PI(4,5)P2 generated more slowly from dephosphorylating PI(3,4,5)P3 might never accumulate. When 5-phosphatase activity was counteracted by coexpression of a phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate 5-kinase, there was accumulation of PI(4,5)P2 in parallel to PI(3,4,5)P3 dephosphorylation

  11. Development of enhanced sulfur rejection processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoon, R.H.; Luttrell, G.H.; Adel, G.T.; Richardson, P.E.

    1996-03-01

    Research at Virginia Tech led to the development of two complementary concepts for improving the removal of inorganic sulfur from many eastern U.S. coals. These concepts are referred to as Electrochemically Enhanced Sulfur Rejection (EESR) and Polymer Enhanced Sulfur Rejection (PESR) processes. The EESR process uses electrochemical techniques to suppress the formation of hydrophobic oxidation products believed to be responsible for the floatability of coal pyrite. The PESR process uses polymeric reagents that react with pyrite and convert floatable middlings, i.e., composite particles composed of pyrite with coal inclusions, into hydrophilic particles. These new pyritic-sulfur rejection processes do not require significant modifications to existing coal preparation facilities, thereby enhancing their adoptability by the coal industry. It is believed that these processes can be used simultaneously to maximize the rejection of both well-liberated pyrite and composite coal-pyrite particles. The project was initiated on October 1, 1992 and all technical work has been completed. This report is based on the research carried out under Tasks 2-7 described in the project proposal. These tasks include Characterization, Electrochemical Studies, In Situ Monitoring of Reagent Adsorption on Pyrite, Bench Scale Testing of the EESR Process, Bench Scale Testing of the PESR Process, and Modeling and Simulation.

  12. "Slow" Voltage-Dependent Inactivation of CaV2.2 Calcium Channels Is Modulated by the PKC Activator Phorbol 12-Myristate 13-Acetate (PMA.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lei Zhu

    Full Text Available CaV2.2 (N-type voltage-gated calcium channels (Ca2+ channels play key roles in neurons and neuroendocrine cells including the control of cellular excitability, neurotransmitter / hormone secretion, and gene expression. Calcium entry is precisely controlled by channel gating properties including multiple forms of inactivation. "Fast" voltage-dependent inactivation is relatively well-characterized and occurs over the tens-to- hundreds of milliseconds timeframe. Superimposed on this is the molecularly distinct, but poorly understood process of "slow" voltage-dependent inactivation, which develops / recovers over seconds-to-minutes. Protein kinases can modulate "slow" inactivation of sodium channels, but little is known about if/how second messengers control "slow" inactivation of Ca2+ channels. We investigated this using recombinant CaV2.2 channels expressed in HEK293 cells and native CaV2 channels endogenously expressed in adrenal chromaffin cells. The PKC activator phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA dramatically prolonged recovery from "slow" inactivation, but an inactive control (4α-PMA had no effect. This effect of PMA was prevented by calphostin C, which targets the C1-domain on PKC, but only partially reduced by inhibitors that target the catalytic domain of PKC. The subtype of the channel β-subunit altered the kinetics of inactivation but not the magnitude of slowing produced by PMA. Intracellular GDP-β-S reduced the effect of PMA suggesting a role for G proteins in modulating "slow" inactivation. We postulate that the kinetics of recovery from "slow" inactivation could provide a molecular memory of recent cellular activity and help control CaV2 channel availability, electrical excitability, and neurotransmission in the seconds-to-minutes timeframe.

  13. Effect of angiotensin II-induced arterial hypertension on the voltage-dependent contractions of mouse arteries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fransen, Paul; Van Hove, Cor E; Leloup, Arthur J A; Schrijvers, Dorien M; De Meyer, Guido R Y; De Keulenaer, Gilles W

    2016-02-01

    Arterial hypertension (AHT) affects the voltage dependency of L-type Ca(2+) channels in cardiomyocytes. We analyzed the effect of angiotensin II (AngII)-induced AHT on L-type Ca(2+) channel-mediated isometric contractions in conduit arteries. AHT was induced in C57Bl6 mice with AngII-filled osmotic mini-pumps (4 weeks). Normotensive mice treated with saline-filled osmotic mini-pumps were used for comparison. Voltage-dependent contractions mediated by L-type Ca(2+) channels were studied in vaso-reactive studies in vitro in isolated aortic and femoral arteries by using extracellular K(+) concentration-response (KDR) experiments. In aortic segments, AngII-induced AHT significantly sensitized isometric contractions induced by elevated extracellular K(+) and depolarization. This sensitization was partly prevented by normalizing blood pressure with hydralazine, suggesting that it was caused by AHT rather than by direct AngII effects on aortic smooth muscle cells. The EC50 for extracellular K(+) obtained in vitro correlated significantly with the rise in arterial blood pressure induced by AngII in vivo. The AHT-induced sensitization persisted when aortic segments were exposed to levcromakalim or to inhibitors of basal nitric oxide release. Consistent with these observations, AngII-treatment also sensitized the vaso-relaxing effects of the L-type Ca(2+) channel blocker diltiazem during K(+)-induced contractions. Unlike aorta, AngII-treatment desensitized the isometric contractions to depolarization in femoral arteries pointing to vascular bed specific responses of arteries to hypertension. AHT affects the voltage-dependent L-type Ca(2+) channel-mediated contraction of conduit arteries. This effect may contribute to the decreased vascular compliance in AHT and explain the efficacy of Ca(2+) channel blockers to reduce vascular stiffness and central blood pressure in AHT.

  14. Analysis and Comparison of Voltage Dependent Charging Strategies for Single-Phase Electric Vehicles in an Unbalanced Danish Distribution Grid

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Álvarez, Jorge Nájera; Knezovic, Katarina; Marinelli, Mattia

    2016-01-01

    This paper studies four voltage dependent solutions for modulating the charging of multiple Electric Vehicles (EVs) in a real Danish network. Uncontrolled EV charging, especially in grid with high EV penetration, can result in overloaded lines and transformers, low-voltages and other performance......-in on phases with lower voltages are constrained during the charging period. In order to solve instability issues which may occur due to lack of communication between the controllers, several improvements are applied to the aforementioned droop control. Simulation results demonstrate the performance...

  15. Evidence for functional interaction of plasma membrane electron transport, voltage-dependent anion channel and volume-regulated anion channel in frog aorta

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Rashmi P Rao; J Prakasa Rao

    2010-12-01

    Frog aortic tissue exhibits plasma membrane electron transport (PMET) owing to its ability to reduce ferricyanide even in the presence of mitochondrial poisons, such as cyanide and azide. Exposure to hypotonic solution (108 mOsmol/kg H2O) enhanced the reduction of ferricyanide in excised aortic tissue of frog. Increment in ferricyanide reductase activity was also brought about by the presence of homocysteine (100 M dissolved in isotonic frog Ringer solution), a redox active compound and a potent modulator of PMET. Two plasma-membrane-bound channels, the volume regulated anion channel (VRAC) and the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), are involved in the response to hypotonic stress. The presence of VRAC and VDAC antagonists–tamoxifen, glibenclamide, fluoxetine and verapamil, and 4,4′-diisothiocyanatostilbene-2,2′-disulphonic acid (DIDS), respectively–inhibited this enhanced activity brought about by either hypotonic stress or homocysteine. The blockers do not affect the ferricyanide reductase activity under isotonic conditions. Taken together, these findings indicate a functional interaction of the three plasma membrane proteins, namely, ferricyanide reductase (PMET), VDAC and VRAC.

  16. Fingerprint image enhancement by differential hysteresis processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blotta, Eduardo; Moler, Emilce

    2004-05-10

    A new method to enhance defective fingerprints images through image digital processing tools is presented in this work. When the fingerprints have been taken without any care, blurred and in some cases mostly illegible, as in the case presented here, their classification and comparison becomes nearly impossible. A combination of spatial domain filters, including a technique called differential hysteresis processing (DHP), is applied to improve these kind of images. This set of filtering methods proved to be satisfactory in a wide range of cases by uncovering hidden details that helped to identify persons. Dactyloscopy experts from Policia Federal Argentina and the EAAF have validated these results.

  17. Development of a voltage-dependent current noise algorithm for conductance-based stochastic modelling of auditory nerve fibres.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badenhorst, Werner; Hanekom, Tania; Hanekom, Johan J

    2016-12-01

    This study presents the development of an alternative noise current term and novel voltage-dependent current noise algorithm for conductance-based stochastic auditory nerve fibre (ANF) models. ANFs are known to have significant variance in threshold stimulus which affects temporal characteristics such as latency. This variance is primarily caused by the stochastic behaviour or microscopic fluctuations of the node of Ranvier's voltage-dependent sodium channels of which the intensity is a function of membrane voltage. Though easy to implement and low in computational cost, existing current noise models have two deficiencies: it is independent of membrane voltage, and it is unable to inherently determine the noise intensity required to produce in vivo measured discharge probability functions. The proposed algorithm overcomes these deficiencies while maintaining its low computational cost and ease of implementation compared to other conductance and Markovian-based stochastic models. The algorithm is applied to a Hodgkin-Huxley-based compartmental cat ANF model and validated via comparison of the threshold probability and latency distributions to measured cat ANF data. Simulation results show the algorithm's adherence to in vivo stochastic fibre characteristics such as an exponential relationship between the membrane noise and transmembrane voltage, a negative linear relationship between the log of the relative spread of the discharge probability and the log of the fibre diameter and a decrease in latency with an increase in stimulus intensity.

  18. Involvement of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate formation in the voltage-dependent regulation of the Ca(2+) concentration in porcine coronary arterial smooth muscle cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamura, Hisao; Ohya, Susumu; Muraki, Katsuhiko; Imaizumi, Yuji

    2012-08-01

    The involvement of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP(3)) formation in the voltage-dependent regulation of intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)) was examined in smooth muscle cells of the porcine coronary artery. Slow ramp depolarization from -90 to 0 mV induced progressive [Ca(2+)](i) increase. The slope was reduced or increased in the presence of Cd(2+) or (±)-1,4-dihydro-2,6-dimethyl-5-nitro-4-(2-[trifluoromethyl]-phenyl)pyridine-3-carboxlic acid methyl ester (Bay K 8644), respectively. The decrease in [Ca(2+)](i) via the membrane hyperpolarization induced by K(+) channel openers (levcromakalim and Evans blue) under current clamp was identical to that under voltage clamp. The step hyperpolarization from -40 to -80 mV reduced [Ca(2+)](i) uniformly over the whole-cell area with a time constant of ∼10 s. The [Ca(2+)](i) at either potential was unaffected by heparin, an inhibitor of IP(3) receptors. Alternatively, [Ca(2+)](i) rapidly increased in the peripheral regions by depolarization from -80 to 0 mV and stayed at that level (∼400 nM) during a 60-s pulse. When the pipette solution contained IP(3) pathway blockers [heparin, 2-aminoethoxydiphenylborate, xestospongin C, or 1-[6-[((17β)-3-methoxyestra-1,3,5[10]-trien-17-yl)amino]hexyl]-1H-pyrrole-2,5-dione (U73122)], the peak [Ca(2+)](i) was unchanged, but the sustained [Ca(2+)](i) was gradually reduced by ∼250 nM within 30 s. In the presence of Cd(2+), a long depolarization period slightly increased the [Ca(2+)](i), which was lower than that in the presence of heparin alone. In coronary arterial myocytes, the sustained increase in the [Ca(2+)](i) during depolarization was partly caused by the Ca(2+) release mediated by the enhanced formation of IP(3). The initial [Ca(2+)](i) elevation triggered by the Ca(2+) influx though voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels may be predominantly responsible for the activation of phospholipase C for IP(3) formation.

  19. Extracellular Linkers Completely Transplant the Voltage Dependence from Kv1.2 Ion Channels to Kv2.1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elinder, Fredrik; Madeja, Michael; Zeberg, Hugo; Århem, Peter

    2016-10-18

    The transmembrane voltage needed to open different voltage-gated K (Kv) channels differs by up to 50 mV from each other. In this study we test the hypothesis that the channels' voltage dependences to a large extent are set by charged amino-acid residues of the extracellular linkers of the Kv channels, which electrostatically affect the charged amino-acid residues of the voltage sensor S4. Extracellular cations shift the conductance-versus-voltage curve, G(V), by interfering with these extracellular charges. We have explored these issues by analyzing the effects of the divalent strontium ion (Sr(2+)) on the voltage dependence of the G(V) curves of wild-type and chimeric Kv channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes, using the voltage-clamp technique. Out of seven Kv channels, Kv1.2 was found to be most sensitive to Sr(2+) (50 mM shifted G(V) by +21.7 mV), and Kv2.1 to be the least sensitive (+7.8 mV). Experiments on 25 chimeras, constructed from Kv1.2 and Kv2.1, showed that the large Sr(2+)-induced G(V) shift of Kv1.2 can be transferred to Kv2.1 by exchanging the extracellular linker between S3 and S4 (L3/4) in combination with either the extracellular linker between S5 and the pore (L5/P) or that between the pore and S6 (LP/6). The effects of the linker substitutions were nonadditive, suggesting specific structural interactions. The free energy of these interactions was ∼20 kJ/mol, suggesting involvement of hydrophobic interactions and/or hydrogen bonds. Using principles from double-layer theory we derived an approximate linear equation (relating the voltage shifts to altered ionic strength), which proved to well match experimental data, suggesting that Sr(2+) acts on these channels mainly by screening surface charges. Taken together, these results highlight the extracellular surface potential at the voltage sensor as an important determinant of the channels' voltage dependence, making the extracellular linkers essential targets for evolutionary selection.

  20. [Role of calcineurin in down-regulation of left ventricular transmural voltage- dependent K(+) currents in mice with heart failure].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Chen-Xia; Dong, Fang; Chang, Yan-Chao; Wang, Xiao-Feng; Xu, Yan-Fang

    2015-08-25

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of calcineurin in the down-regulation of left ventricular transmural voltage-dependent K(+) currents in heart failure. Transverse aorta was banded by using microsurgical techniques to create mouse heart failure model. Sham-operated (Sham) or aorta banded (Band) mice were randomized to receive calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine A (CsA) or vehicle. The densities and kinetic properties of voltage-dependent K(+) currents, as well as action potential (AP), of left ventricular subendocardial (Endo) and subepicardial (Epi) myocytes were determined by using whole-cell patch-clamp technique. The results showed that calcineurin activity was significant higher in Endo myocytes than that in Epi ones in all the groups. Compared with Sham group, Band mice showed significantly increased calcineurin activity both in Endo and Epi myocytes. CsA significantly reduced calcineurin activity in Band mice. CsA treatment in Band mice partially reversed the down-regulation of Ito density, completely reversed the down-regulation of IK,slow density both in Endo and Epi myocytes, and Iss density in Endo myocytes. In addition, CsA treatment in Band mice partially antagonized the prolongation of action potential duration (APD), and APD at 50% (APD50) and 90% repolarization (APD90) were significantly reduced. Because of non-parallel shortening of APD in Endo and Epi myocytes, the ratio of Endo/Epi APD90 was reduced from 4.8:1 in Band mice to 2.6:1 in CsA-treated mice, which was close to that in Sham mice. The results suggest that non-parallel activation of calcineurin in Endo and Epi myocytes contributes to the down-regulation of transmural voltage-dependent K(+) currents and the amplification of transmural dispersion of repolarization (TDR) in left ventricular failure hearts. Inhibition of calcineurin may be a potential new therapeutic strategy to prevent and cure arrhythmias and sudden death in heart failure.

  1. The voltage dependence of GABAA receptor gating depends on extracellular pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pytel, Maria; Mercik, Katarzyna; Mozrzymas, Jerzy W

    2005-11-28

    Recent studies have indicated that changes in extracellular pH and in membrane voltage affect the gamma-amino-n-butyric acid type A receptor gating mainly by altering desensitization and binding. To test whether the effects of membrane potential and pH are additive, their combined actions were investigated. By analyzing the current responses to rapid gamma-amino-n-butyric acid applications, we found that the current to voltage relationship was close to linear at acid pH but the increasing pH induced an inward rectification. Desensitization was enhanced at depolarizing potentials, but this strongly depended on pH, being weak at acidic and strong at basic pH values. A similar trend was observed for the onset rate of responses to saturating gamma-amino-n-butyric acid concentration. These data provide evidence that the voltage sensitivity of GABAA receptors depends on extracellular pH.

  2. The voltage dependence of GABAA receptor gating depends on extracellular pH

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pytel, Maria; Mercik, Katarzyna; Mozrzymas, Jerzy W.

    2007-01-01

    Recent studies have indicated that changes in extracellular pH and in membrane voltage affect the γ-amino-n-butyric acid type A receptor gating mainly by altering desensitization and binding. To test whether the effects of membrane potential and pH are additive, their combined actions were investigated. By analyzing the current responses to rapid γ-amino-n-butyric acid applications, we found that the current to voltage relationship was close to linear at acid pH but the increasing pH induced an inward rectification. Desensitization was enhanced at depolarizing potentials, but this strongly depended on pH, being weak at acidic and strong at basic pH values. A similar trend was observed for the onset rate of responses to saturating γ-amino-n-butyric acid concentration. These data provide evidence that the voltage sensitivity of GABAA receptors depends on extracellular pH. PMID:16272885

  3. Quantity language speakers show enhanced subcortical processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Caitlin; Aalto, Daniel; Šimko, Juraj; Putkinen, Vesa; Tervaniemi, Mari; Vainio, Martti

    2016-07-01

    The complex auditory brainstem response (cABR) can reflect language-based plasticity in subcortical stages of auditory processing. It is sensitive to differences between language groups as well as stimulus properties, e.g. intensity or frequency. It is also sensitive to the synchronicity of the neural population stimulated by sound, which results in increased amplitude of wave V. Finnish is a full-fledged quantity language, in which word meaning is dependent upon duration of the vowels and consonants. Previous studies have shown that Finnish speakers have enhanced behavioural sound duration discrimination ability and larger cortical mismatch negativity (MMN) to duration change compared to German and French speakers. The next step is to find out whether these enhanced duration discrimination abilities of quantity language speakers originate at the brainstem level. Since German has a complementary quantity contrast which restricts the possible patterns of short and long vowels and consonants, the current experiment compared cABR between nonmusician Finnish and German native speakers using seven short complex stimuli. Finnish speakers had a larger cABR peak amplitude than German speakers, while the peak onset latency was only affected by stimulus intensity and spectral band. The results suggest that early cABR responses are better synchronised for Finns, which could underpin the enhanced duration sensitivity of quantity language speakers. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Differential expression of T- and L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels in renal resistance vessels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Pernille B. Lærkegaard; Jensen, Boye L.; Andreasen, D;

    2001-01-01

    .2 protein was demonstrated by immunochemical labeling of rat preglomerular vasculature and juxtamedullary efferent arterioles and vasa recta. Cortical efferent arterioles were not immunopositive. Recordings of intracellular calcium concentration with digital fluorescence imaging microscopy showed......The distribution of voltage-dependent calcium channels in kidney pre- and postglomerular resistance vessels was determined at the molecular and functional levels. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis of microdissected rat preglomerular vessels and cultured smooth muscle cells...... showed coexpression of mRNAs for T-type subunits (Ca(V)3.1, Ca(V)3.2) and for an L-type subunit (Ca(V)1.2). The same expression pattern was observed in juxtamedullary efferent arterioles and outer medullary vasa recta. No calcium channel messages were detected in cortical efferent arterioles. Ca(V)1...

  5. Characterization and functional analysis of voltage-dependent anion channel 1 (VDAC1) from orange-spotted grouper (Epinephelus coioides).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Yan; Zhao, Zhe; Hong, Xiaoyou; Chen, Kunci; Zhu, Xinping

    2014-07-01

    The voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC) is a highly conserved integral protein of mitochondria in different eukaryotic species. It forms a selective channel in the mitochondrial outer membrane that serves as the controlled pathway for small metabolites and ions. In this study, a VDAC gene, EcVDAC1, was isolated from orange-spotted grouper (Epinephelus coioides). The EcVDAC1 exhibits ubiquitous expression in various tissues of orange-spotted grouper and is upregulated in liver, gill, and spleen after stimulation with lipopolysaccharides (LPS). Subcellular localization analysis shows that the EcVDAC1 protein colocalized with the mitochondria. A caspase-3 assay demonstrates that overexpression of the EcVDAC1 induced apoptotic cell death in fathead minnow cells. The data presented in this study provide new information regarding the relationship between LPS and the EcVDAC1 gene, suggesting that the fish VDAC1 gene may play an important role in antibacterial immune response.

  6. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor sertraline inhibits voltage-dependent K+ channels in rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    HAN SOL KIM; HONGLIANG LI; HYE WON KIM; SUNG EUN SHIN; IL-WHAN CHOI; AMY L FIRTH; HYOWEON BANG; YOUNG MIN BAE; WON SUN PARK

    2016-12-01

    We examined the effects of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) sertraline on voltage-dependent K+ (Kv)channels in freshly isolated rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells using the voltage-clamp technique. Sertralinedecreased the Kv channel current in a dose-dependent manner, with an IC50 value of 0.18 μM and a slope value (Hillcoefficient) of 0.61. Although the application of 1 μM sertraline did not affect the steady-state activation curves,sertraline caused a significant, negative shift in the inactivation curves. Pretreatment with another SSRI, paroxetine,had no significant effect on Kv currents and did not alter the inhibitory effects of sertraline on Kv currents. From theseresults, we concluded that sertraline dose-dependently inhibited Kv currents independently of serotonin reuptakeinhibition by shifting inactivation curves to a more negative potential.

  7. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor sertraline inhibits voltage-dependent K+ channels in rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Han Sol; Li, Hongliang; Kim, Hye Won; Shin, Sung Eun; Choi, Il-Whan; Firth, Amy L; Bang, Hyoweon; Bae, Young Min; Park, Won Sun

    2016-12-01

    We examined the effects of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) sertraline on voltage-dependent K+ (Kv) channels in freshly isolated rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells using the voltage-clamp technique. Sertraline decreased the Kv channel current in a dose-dependent manner, with an IC50 value of 0.18 mu M and a slope value (Hill coefficient) of 0.61. Although the application of 1 mu M sertraline did not affect the steady-state activation curves, sertraline caused a significant, negative shift in the inactivation curves. Pretreatment with another SSRI, paroxetine, had no significant effect on Kv currents and did not alter the inhibitory effects of sertraline on Kv currents. From these results, we concluded that sertraline dose-dependently inhibited Kv currents independently of serotonin reuptake inhibition by shifting inactivation curves to a more negative potential.

  8. Temperature and bias voltage dependence of Co/Pd multilayer-based magnetic tunnel junctions with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kugler, Zoe, E-mail: zkugler@physik.uni-bielefeld.d [Bielefeld University, Department of Physics, Universitaetsstr. 25, 33615 Bielefeld (Germany); Drewello, Volker; Schaefers, Markus; Schmalhorst, Jan; Reiss, Guenter; Thomas, Andy [Bielefeld University, Department of Physics, Universitaetsstr. 25, 33615 Bielefeld (Germany)

    2011-01-15

    Temperature- and bias voltage-dependent transport measurements of magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs) with perpendicularly magnetized Co/Pd electrodes are presented. Magnetization measurements of the Co/Pd multilayers are performed to characterize the electrodes. The effects of the Co layer thickness in the Co/Pd bilayers, the annealing temperature, the Co thickness at the MgO barrier interface, and the number of bilayers on the tunneling magneto resistance (TMR) effect are investigated. TMR-ratios of about 11% at room temperature and 18.5% at 13 K are measured and two well-defined switching fields are observed. The results are compared to measurements of MTJs with Co-Fe-B electrodes and in-plane anisotropy.

  9. Differential expression of T- and L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels in renal resistance vessels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Pernille B. Lærkegaard; Jensen, Boye L.; Andreasen, D

    2001-01-01

    The distribution of voltage-dependent calcium channels in kidney pre- and postglomerular resistance vessels was determined at the molecular and functional levels. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis of microdissected rat preglomerular vessels and cultured smooth muscle cells...... showed coexpression of mRNAs for T-type subunits (Ca(V)3.1, Ca(V)3.2) and for an L-type subunit (Ca(V)1.2). The same expression pattern was observed in juxtamedullary efferent arterioles and outer medullary vasa recta. No calcium channel messages were detected in cortical efferent arterioles. Ca(V)1.......2 protein was demonstrated by immunochemical labeling of rat preglomerular vasculature and juxtamedullary efferent arterioles and vasa recta. Cortical efferent arterioles were not immunopositive. Recordings of intracellular calcium concentration with digital fluorescence imaging microscopy showed...

  10. Functional coupling between sodium-activated potassium channels and voltage-dependent persistent sodium currents in cricket Kenyon cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Izumi; Yoshino, Masami

    2015-10-01

    In this study, we examined the functional coupling between Na(+)-activated potassium (KNa) channels and Na(+) influx through voltage-dependent Na(+) channels in Kenyon cells isolated from the mushroom body of the cricket Gryllus bimaculatus. Single-channel activity of KNa channels was recorded with the cell-attached patch configuration. The open probability (Po) of KNa channels increased with increasing Na(+) concentration in a bath solution, whereas it decreased by the substitution of Na(+) with an equimolar concentration of Li(+). The Po of KNa channels was also found to be reduced by bath application of a high concentration of TTX (1 μM) and riluzole (100 μM), which inhibits both fast (INaf) and persistent (INaP) Na(+) currents, whereas it was unaffected by a low concentration of TTX (10 nM), which selectively blocks INaf. Bath application of Cd(2+) at a low concentration (50 μM), as an inhibitor of INaP, also decreased the Po of KNa channels. Conversely, bath application of the inorganic Ca(2+)-channel blockers Co(2+) and Ni(2+) at high concentrations (500 μM) had little effect on the Po of KNa channels, although Cd(2+) (500 μM) reduced the Po of KNa channels. Perforated whole cell clamp analysis further indicated the presence of sustained outward currents for which amplitude was dependent on the amount of Na(+) influx. Taken together, these results indicate that KNa channels could be activated by Na(+) influx passing through voltage-dependent persistent Na(+) channels. The functional significance of this coupling mechanism was discussed in relation to the membrane excitability of Kenyon cells and its possible role in the formation of long-term memory.

  11. trans-Caryophyllene, a Natural Sesquiterpene, Causes Tracheal Smooth Muscle Relaxation through Blockade of Voltage-Dependent Ca2+ Channels

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jader Santos Cruz

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available trans-Caryophyllene is a major component in the essential oils of various species of medicinal plants used in popular medicine in Brazil. It belongs to the chemical class of the sesquiterpenes and has been the subject of a number of studies. Here, we evaluated the effects of this compound in airway smooth muscle. The biological activities of trans-caryophyllene were examined in isolated bath organs to investigate the effect in basal tonus. Electromechanical and pharmacomechanical couplings were evaluated through the responses to K+ depolarization and exposure to acetylcholine (ACh, respectively. Isolated cells of rat tracheal smooth muscle were used to investigate trans-caryophyllene effects on voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels by using the whole-cell voltage-clamp configuration of the patch-clamp technique. trans-Caryophyllene showed more efficiency in the blockade of electromechanical excitation-contraction coupling while it has only minor inhibitory effect on pharmacomechanical coupling. Epithelium removal does not modify tracheal smooth muscle response elicited by trans-caryophyllene in the pharmacomechanical coupling. Under Ca2+-free conditions, pre-exposure to trans-caryophyllene did not reduce the contraction induced by ACh in isolated rat tracheal smooth muscle, regardless of the presence of intact epithelium. In the whole-cell configuration, trans-caryophyllene (3 mM, inhibited the inward Ba2+ current (IBa to approximately 50% of control levels. Altogether, our results demonstrate that trans-caryophyllene has anti-spasmodic activity on rat tracheal smooth muscle which could be explained, at least in part, by the voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels blockade.

  12. Forgetting of long-term memory requires activation of NMDA receptors, L-type voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels, and calcineurin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sachser, Ricardo Marcelo; Santana, Fabiana; Crestani, Ana Paula; Lunardi, Paula; Pedraza, Lizeth Katherine; Quillfeldt, Jorge Alberto; Hardt, Oliver; de Oliveira Alvares, Lucas

    2016-01-01

    In the past decades, the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying memory consolidation, reconsolidation, and extinction have been well characterized. However, the neurobiological underpinnings of forgetting processes remain to be elucidated. Here we used behavioral, pharmacological and electrophysiological approaches to explore mechanisms controlling forgetting. We found that post-acquisition chronic inhibition of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR), L-type voltage-dependent Ca2+ channel (LVDCC), and protein phosphatase calcineurin (CaN), maintains long-term object location memory that otherwise would have been forgotten. We further show that NMDAR activation is necessary to induce forgetting of object recognition memory. Studying the role of NMDAR activation in the decay of the early phase of long-term potentiation (E-LTP) in the hippocampus, we found that ifenprodil infused 30 min after LTP induction in vivo blocks the decay of CA1-evoked postsynaptic plasticity, suggesting that GluN2B-containing NMDARs activation are critical to promote LTP decay. Taken together, these findings indicate that a well-regulated forgetting process, initiated by Ca2+ influx through LVDCCs and GluN2B-NMDARs followed by CaN activation, controls the maintenance of hippocampal LTP and long-term memories over time. PMID:26947131

  13. Forgetting of long-term memory requires activation of NMDA receptors, L-type voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels, and calcineurin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sachser, Ricardo Marcelo; Santana, Fabiana; Crestani, Ana Paula; Lunardi, Paula; Pedraza, Lizeth Katherine; Quillfeldt, Jorge Alberto; Hardt, Oliver; Alvares, Lucas de Oliveira

    2016-03-07

    In the past decades, the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying memory consolidation, reconsolidation, and extinction have been well characterized. However, the neurobiological underpinnings of forgetting processes remain to be elucidated. Here we used behavioral, pharmacological and electrophysiological approaches to explore mechanisms controlling forgetting. We found that post-acquisition chronic inhibition of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR), L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channel (LVDCC), and protein phosphatase calcineurin (CaN), maintains long-term object location memory that otherwise would have been forgotten. We further show that NMDAR activation is necessary to induce forgetting of object recognition memory. Studying the role of NMDAR activation in the decay of the early phase of long-term potentiation (E-LTP) in the hippocampus, we found that ifenprodil infused 30 min after LTP induction in vivo blocks the decay of CA1-evoked postsynaptic plasticity, suggesting that GluN2B-containing NMDARs activation are critical to promote LTP decay. Taken together, these findings indicate that a well-regulated forgetting process, initiated by Ca(2+) influx through LVDCCs and GluN2B-NMDARs followed by CaN activation, controls the maintenance of hippocampal LTP and long-term memories over time.

  14. Neuroprotective activity of stiripentol with a possible involvement of voltage-dependent calcium and sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verleye, Marc; Buttigieg, Dorothée; Steinschneider, Rémy

    2016-02-01

    A growing body of data has shown that recurrent epileptic seizures may be caused by an excessive release of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate in the brain. Glutamatergic overstimulation results in massive neuronal influxes of calcium and sodium through N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid, and kainic acid glutamate subtype receptors and also through voltage-gated calcium and sodium channels. These persistent and abnormal sodium and calcium entry points have deleterious consequences (neurotoxicity) for neuronal function. The therapeutic value of an antiepileptic drug would include not only control of seizure activity but also protection of neuronal tissue. The present study examines the in vitro neuroprotective effects of stiripentol, an antiepileptic compound with γ-aminobutyric acidergic properties, on neuronal-astroglial cultures from rat cerebral cortex exposed to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) or to glutamate (40 µM for 20 min), two in vitro models of brain injury. In addition, the affinity of stiripentol for the different glutamate receptor subtypes and the interaction with the cell influx of Na(+) and of Ca(2+) enhanced by veratridine and NMDA, respectively, are assessed. Stiripentol (10-100 µM) included in the culture medium during OGD or with glutamate significantly increased the number of surviving neurons relative to controls. Stiripentol displayed no binding affinity for different subtypes of glutamate receptors (IC50  >100 µM) but significantly blocked the entry of Na(+) and Ca(2+) activated by veratridine and NMDA, respectively. These results suggest that Na(+) and Ca(2+) channels could contribute to the neuroprotective properties of sitiripentol.

  15. Applied-voltage dependence on conductometric track etching of poly(vinylidene fluoride) films

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nuryanthi, N. [Department of Nuclear Engineering and Management, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8656 (Japan); Quantum Beam Science Directorate, Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Yamaki, T., E-mail: yamaki.tetsuya@jaea.go.jp [Quantum Beam Science Directorate, Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Koshikawa, H.; Asano, M.; Sawada, S.; Hasegawa, S.; Maekawa, Y. [Quantum Beam Science Directorate, Japan Atomic Energy Agency, 1233 Watanuki, Takasaki, Gunma 370-1292 (Japan); Katsumura, Y. [Department of Nuclear Engineering and Management, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8656 (Japan)

    2013-11-01

    We investigated the conductometric etching of heavy-ion-irradiated poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) films to study their pore growth behavior, which was estimated from radial etch rates under the application of different voltages. The plateau of the pore diameter seen in a bulk etching region was constant at an applied voltage ranging from 0.1 to 3.0 V, while the breakthrough time varied considerably. Employing the first derivative of the conductometric curve, corresponding to the radial etch rate, R, enabled us to clearly analyze parameters reflecting the track structures (i.e., the maximum radial etch rate, R{sub max}, and the time for the diameter to reach the final plateau, T{sub E}). Interestingly, these two parameters were significantly influenced by the applied voltage. There was a trend toward increasing values of R{sub max} and, in contrast, decreasing levels of T{sub E} as the applied voltage was increased. These promotional effects of the etching process can be rationalized by considering the electrophoretic migration of dissolved species in and out of each pore. Thus, conductometric etching under different voltage conditions offers the ability to control pore geometries by optimizing the etching process in the transverse direction as well as in the thickness direction.

  16. Simulation-enhanced lean design process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon H. Marvel

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available 72 Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} A traditional lean transformation process does not validate the future state before implementation, relying instead on a series of iterations to modify the system until performance is satisfactory. An enhanced lean process that includes future state validation before implementation is presented.  Simulation modeling and experimentation is proposed as the primary validation tool.  Simulation modeling and experimentation extends value stream mapping to include time, the behavior of individual entities, structural variability, random variability, and component interaction effects. Experiments to analyze the model and draw conclusions about whether the lean transformation effectively addresses the current state gap can be conducted.  Industrial applications of the enhanced lean process show it effectiveness.

  17. A voltage-dependent persistent sodium current in mammalian hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, C R; Sah, P; Buckett, K J; Gage, P W

    1990-06-01

    Currents generated by depolarizing voltage pulses were recorded in neurons from the pyramidal cell layer of the CA1 region of rat or guinea pig hippocampus with single electrode voltage-clamp or tight-seal whole-cell voltage-clamp techniques. In neurons in situ in slices, and in dissociated neurons, subtraction of currents generated by identical depolarizing voltage pulses before and after exposure to tetrodotoxin revealed a small, persistent current after the transient current. These currents could also be recorded directly in dissociated neurons in which other ionic currents were effectively suppressed. It was concluded that the persistent current was carried by sodium ions because it was blocked by TTX, decreased in amplitude when extracellular sodium concentration was reduced, and was not blocked by cadmium. The amplitude of the persistent sodium current varied with clamp potential, being detectable at potentials as negative as -70 mV and reaching a maximum at approximately -40 mV. The maximum amplitude at -40 mV in 21 cells in slices was -0.34 +/- 0.05 nA (mean +/- 1 SEM) and -0.21 +/- 0.05 nA in 10 dissociated neurons. Persistent sodium conductance increased sigmoidally with a potential between -70 and -30 mV and could be fitted with the Boltzmann equation, g = gmax/(1 + exp[(V' - V)/k)]). The average gmax was 7.8 +/- 1.1 nS in the 21 neurons in slices and 4.4 +/- 1.6 nS in the 10 dissociated cells that had lost their processes indicating that the channels responsible are probably most densely aggregated on or close to the soma. The half-maximum conductance occurred close to -50 mV, both in neurons in slices and in dissociated neurons, and the slope factor (k) was 5-9 mV. The persistent sodium current was much more resistant to inactivation by depolarization than the transient current and could be recorded at greater than 50% of its normal amplitude when the transient current was completely inactivated. Because the persistent sodium current activates at

  18. Conducting and voltage-dependent behaviors of potassium ion channels reconstituted from diaphragm sarcoplasmic reticulum: comparison with the cardiac isoform.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picher, M; Decrouy, A; Rousseau, E

    1996-02-21

    Sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) K+ channels from canine diaphragm were studied upon fusion of longitudinal and junctional membrane vesicles into planar lipid bilayers (PLB). The large-conductance cation selective channel (gamma(max) = 250 pS; Km = 33 mM) displays long-lasting open events which are much more frequent at positive than at negative voltages. A major subconducting state about 45% of the fully-open state current amplitude was occasionally observed at all voltages. The voltage-dependence of the open probability displays a sigmoid relationship that was fitted by the Boltzmann equation and expressed in terms of thermodynamic parameters, namely the free energy (delta Gi) and the effective gating charge (Zs): delta Gi = 0.27 kcal/mol and Zs = -1.19 in 250 mM potassium gluconate (K-gluconate). Kinetic analyses also confirmed the voltage-dependent gating behavior of this channel, and indicate the implication of at least two open and three closed states. The diaphragm SR K+ channel shares several biophysical properties with the cardiac isoform: g = 180 pS, delta Gi = 0.75 kcal/mol, Zs = -1.45 in 150 mM K-gluconate, and a similar sigmoid P(o)/voltage relationship. Little is known about the regulation of the diaphragm and cardiac SR K+ channels. The conductance and gating of these channels were not influenced by physiological concentrations of Ca2+ (0.1 microM-1 mM) or Mg2+ (0.25-1 mM), as well as by cGMP (25-100 microM), lemakalim (1-100 microM), glyburide (up to 10 microM) or charybdotoxin (45-200 nM), added either to the cis or to the trans chamber. The apparent lack of biochemical or pharmacological modulation of these channels implies that they are not related to any of the well characterized surface membrane K+ channels. On the other hand, their voltage sensitivity strongly suggests that their activity could be modulated by putative changes in SR membrane potential that might occur during calcium fluxes.

  19. Voltage-dependent potassium currents during fast spikes of rat cerebellar Purkinje neurons: inhibition by BDS-I toxin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martina, Marco; Metz, Alexia E; Bean, Bruce P

    2007-01-01

    We characterized the kinetics and pharmacological properties of voltage-activated potassium currents in rat cerebellar Purkinje neurons using recordings from nucleated patches, which allowed high resolution of activation and deactivation kinetics. Activation was exceptionally rapid, with 10-90% activation in about 400 mus at +30 mV, near the peak of the spike. Deactivation was also extremely rapid, with a decay time constant of about 300 mus near -80 mV. These rapid activation and deactivation kinetics are consistent with mediation by Kv3-family channels but are even faster than reported for Kv3-family channels in other neurons. The peptide toxin BDS-I had very little blocking effect on potassium currents elicited by 100-ms depolarizing steps, but the potassium current evoked by action potential waveforms was inhibited nearly completely. The mechanism of inhibition by BDS-I involves slowing of activation rather than total channel block, consistent with the effects described in cloned Kv3-family channels and this explains the dramatically different effects on currents evoked by short spikes versus voltage steps. As predicted from this mechanism, the effects of toxin on spike width were relatively modest (broadening by roughly 25%). These results show that BDS-I-sensitive channels with ultrafast activation and deactivation kinetics carry virtually all of the voltage-dependent potassium current underlying repolarization during normal Purkinje cell spikes.

  20. Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel 1(VDAC1) Participates the Apoptosis of the Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Desminopathy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mo, Yanqing; Gong, Qi; Jiang, Aihua; Zhao, Jing

    2016-01-01

    Desminopathies caused by the mutation in the gene coding for desmin are genetically protein aggregation myopathies. Mitochondrial dysfunction is one of pathological changes in the desminopathies at the earliest stage. The molecular mechanisms of mitochondria dysfunction in desminopathies remain exclusive. VDAC1 regulates mitochondrial uptake across the outer membrane and mitochondrial outer membrane permeabilization (MOMP). Relationships between desminopathies and Voltage-dependent anion channel 1 (VDAC1) remain unclear. Here we successfully constructed the desminopathy rat model, evaluated with conventional stains, containing hematoxylin and eosin (HE), Gomori Trichrome (MGT), (PAS), red oil (ORO), NADH-TR, SDH staining and immunohistochemistry. Immunofluorescence results showed that VDAC1 was accumulated in the desmin highly stained area of muscle fibers of desminopathy patients or desminopathy rat model compared to the normal ones. Meanwhile apoptosis related proteins bax and ATF2 were involved in desminopathy patients and desminopathy rat model, but not bcl-2, bcl-xl or HK2.VDAC1 and desmin are closely relevant in the tissue splices of deminopathies patients and rats with desminopathy at protein lever. Moreover, apoptotic proteins are also involved in the desminopathies, like bax, ATF2, but not bcl-2, bcl-xl or HK2. This pathological analysis presents the correlation between VDAC1 and desmin, and apoptosis related proteins are correlated in the desminopathy. Furthermore, we provide a rat model of desminopathy for the investigation of desmin related myopathy. PMID:27941998

  1. Inhibitory effect of resveratrol on the proliferation of GH3 pituitary-adenoma cells and voltage-dependent potassium current

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ming Chu; Lanlan Wei; Chao Wang; Yu Cheng; Kongbin Yang; Baofeng Yang

    2006-01-01

    BACKGROUND:Recent researches indicate that activation of potassium channel is likely to cause many kinds of cells to proliferate and differentiate;using chemical to block the potassium channel can restrain the proliferation of small lung-cancer cells.breast cancer.prostate cancer and human lymphocyte,etc.Previous researches proved that resveratrol(RE),a selective estrogen receptor modulator(SERM).could inhibit growth of GH3 calls,induce apoptosis,and resist tumor through interfering K+ channel.OBJECTIVE:To investigate the effects of RE on Voltage-dependent K+ current [Ik(v)] and cell proliferation in GH3 pituitary-tumor cells.DESIGN:Observational contrast study.SETTING:Department of Neurosurgery.the First Clinical Hospital of Harbin Medical University;Department of Microbiology,Harbin Medical University;Department of Pharmacology,Harbin Medical University.MATERIALS: GH3 pituitary-tumor cell line of rats was purchased from the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC).RE and[3-(4,5-dimethylthiazo1-2-y1)-2.5-diphenyl-tetrazolium bromide](MTT)were obtained from Sigma Chemical CO,St Louis,USA;Ham's F-10 medium from Gibco BRL;Equine serum and fetal bovine serum from Hyclone Laboratories,Logan,UT;FACSCalibur flow cytometer from BD Company,USA.RE was dissolved in ethanol and stored at-20 ℃.It was diluted to different concentrations (10.50,100 μmol/L)with medium and extra cellular solution when needed.rhe final concentration of ethanol was Jess than 0.01%.METHODS:The experiment was carried out in the Department of Microbiology and Pharmacology of Harbin Medical University from March 2005 to January 2006.①Cell preparation:Proliferating indexes affected by 10.50 and 100 μmol/L RE were measured with MTT,respectively.0.0001 volume fraction of ethan ol was added into control group.Inhibitory rate of cellular growth was calculated as the following formula:Inhibitory rate (%)=(1-A value in experimental group/A value in control group)x100%.The experiments mentioned above were

  2. Multiphasic profiles for voltage-dependent K+ channels: Reanalysis of data of MacKinnon and coworkers

    CERN Document Server

    Nissen, Per

    2016-01-01

    In a study of the role that voltage-dependent K+ channels may have in the mechanosensation of living cells (Schmidt et al. Proc Soc Natl Acad Sci USA 109: 10352-10357. 2012), the data were as conventionally done fitted by a Boltzmann function. However, as also found for other data for ion channels, this interpretation must be rejected in favor of a multiphasic profile, a series of straight lines separated by discontinuous transitions, quite often in the form of noncontiguities (jumps). The data points in the present study are often very unevenly distributed around the curvilinear profiles. Thus, for 43 of the 75 profiles, the probability is less than 5% that the uneven distribution is due to chance, for 26 the probability is less than 1%, and for 12 the probability is less than 0.1%, giving a vanishingly low overall probability for all profiles. Especially at low voltages, the differences between the fits to curvilinear and multiphasic profiles may be huge. In the multiphasic profiles, adjacent lines are quit...

  3. Scorpion toxin prolongs an inactivation phase of the voltage-dependent sodium current in rat isolated single hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaneda, M; Oyama, Y; Ikemoto, Y; Akaike, N

    1989-05-15

    The effects of scorpion toxin on the voltage-dependent sodium current (INa) of CA1 pyramidal neurons isolated from rat hippocampus were studied under the single-electrode voltage-clamp condition using a 'concentration-clamp' technique. The toxin increased the peak amplitude of INa and prolonged its inactivation phase in a time- and dose-dependent manner. Inactivation phase of INa proceeded with two exponential components in the absence (control) and presence of the toxin. In the toxin-treated neurons, both the time constant of slow component and its fractional contribution to the total current increased dose-dependently while the fractional contribution of the fast one decreased in a dose-dependent fashion without changing its time constant. Actions of scorpion toxin on the sodium channels of hippocampal pyramidal neurons were essentially similar to those of peripheral preparations. Therefore, it can be concluded that the sodium channels of mammalian brain neurons have structures and functions similar to peripheral channels.

  4. Voltage-dependent motion of the catalytic region of voltage-sensing phosphatase monitored by a fluorescent amino acid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakata, Souhei; Jinno, Yuka; Kawanabe, Akira; Okamura, Yasushi

    2016-07-05

    The cytoplasmic region of voltage-sensing phosphatase (VSP) derives the voltage dependence of its catalytic activity from coupling to a voltage sensor homologous to that of voltage-gated ion channels. To assess the conformational changes in the cytoplasmic region upon activation of the voltage sensor, we genetically incorporated a fluorescent unnatural amino acid, 3-(6-acetylnaphthalen-2-ylamino)-2-aminopropanoic acid (Anap), into the catalytic region of Ciona intestinalis VSP (Ci-VSP). Measurements of Anap fluorescence under voltage clamp in Xenopus oocytes revealed that the catalytic region assumes distinct conformations dependent on the degree of voltage-sensor activation. FRET analysis showed that the catalytic region remains situated beneath the plasma membrane, irrespective of the voltage level. Moreover, Anap fluorescence from a membrane-facing loop in the C2 domain showed a pattern reflecting substrate turnover. These results indicate that the voltage sensor regulates Ci-VSP catalytic activity by causing conformational changes in the entire catalytic region, without changing their distance from the plasma membrane.

  5. Voltage-dependent anion channels (VDACs, porin) expressed in the plasma membrane regulate the differentiation and function of human osteoclasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kotake, Shigeru; Yago, Toru; Kawamoto, Manabu; Nanke, Yuki

    2013-01-01

    Fewer molecules have been identified on human than murine osteoclasts, the former differing from murine osteoclasts in many ways. We show that voltage-dependent anion channels (VDACs, porin) are expressed in the plasma membrane of human osteoclasts. A search for novel proteins expressed in the plasma membrane of human osteoclasts identified VDAC. Anti-VDAC antibodies inhibited human osteoclastogenesis in vitro. VDAC expression was detected in membranes by immunoelectron microscopy and immunocytochemical double staining. The VDAC protein functions as a Cl(-) channel. VDACs regulate bone resorption, which show using Osteologic™ plates. The epitope of the antibody lay within a 10-amino acid sequence in the VDAC. The findings suggest that the VDAC is, at least partly, a novel Cl(-) channel regulating the differentiation and function of human osteoclasts. VDACs may play a crucial role in acidifying the resorption lacunae between osteoclasts and bone. Inhibitors of VDACs could be used to treat diseases involving increased resorption, such as osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and Paget's disease. © 2012 International Federation for Cell Biology.

  6. Actin Dynamics Regulates Voltage-Dependent Calcium-Permeable Channels of the Vicia faba Guard Cell Plasma Membrane

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wei Zhang; Liu-Min Fan

    2009-01-01

    Free cytosolic Ca~(2+) ([Ca~(2+)]_(cyt)) is an ubiquitous second messenger in plant cell signaling, and [Ca~(2+)]_(cyt) elevation is associated with Ca~(2+)-permeable channels in the plasma membrane and endomembranes regulated by a wide range of stimuli. However, knowledge regarding Ca~(2+) channels and their regulation remains limited in planta. A type of voltage-dependent Ca~(2+)-permeable channel was identified and characterized for the Vicia faba L. guard cell plasma membrane by using patch-clamp techniques. These channels are permeable to both Ba~(2+) and Ca~(2+), and their activities can be inhibited by micromolar Gd~(3+). The unitary conductance and the reversal potential of the channels depend on the Ca~(2+) or Ba~(2+) gradients across the plasma membrane. The inward whole-cell Ca~(2+) (Ba~(2+)) current, as well as the unitary current amplitude and NP. of the single Ca~(2+) channel, increase along with the membrane hyperpolarization. Pharmacological experiments suggest that actin dynamics may serve as an upstream regulator of this type of calcium channel of the guard cell plasma membrane. Cytochalasin D, an actin polymerization blocker, activated the NP_o of these channels at the single channel level and increased the current amplitude at the whole-cell level. But these channel activations and current increments could be restrained by pretreatment with an F-actin stabilizer, phalloidin. The potential physiological significance of this regulatory mechanism is also discussed.

  7. Voltage-dependent anion channels modulate mitochondrial metabolism in cancer cells: regulation by free tubulin and erastin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maldonado, Eduardo N; Sheldon, Kely L; DeHart, David N; Patnaik, Jyoti; Manevich, Yefim; Townsend, Danyelle M; Bezrukov, Sergey M; Rostovtseva, Tatiana K; Lemasters, John J

    2013-04-26

    Respiratory substrates and adenine nucleotides cross the mitochondrial outer membrane through the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), comprising three isoforms--VDAC1, 2, and 3. We characterized the role of individual isoforms in mitochondrial metabolism by HepG2 human hepatoma cells using siRNA. With VDAC3 to the greatest extent, all VDAC isoforms contributed to the maintenance of mitochondrial membrane potential, but only VDAC3 knockdown decreased ATP, ADP, NAD(P)H, and mitochondrial redox state. Cells expressing predominantly VDAC3 were least sensitive to depolarization induced by increased free tubulin. In planar lipid bilayers, free tubulin inhibited VDAC1 and VDAC2 but not VDAC3. Erastin, a compound that interacts with VDAC, blocked and reversed mitochondrial depolarization after microtubule destabilizers in intact cells and antagonized tubulin-induced VDAC blockage in planar bilayers. In conclusion, free tubulin inhibits VDAC1/2 and limits mitochondrial metabolism in HepG2 cells, contributing to the Warburg phenomenon. Reversal of tubulin-VDAC interaction by erastin antagonizes Warburg metabolism and restores oxidative mitochondrial metabolism.

  8. The episodic ataxia type 1 mutation I262T alters voltage-dependent gating and disrupts protein biosynthesis of human Kv1.1 potassium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Szu-Han; Fu, Ssu-Ju; Huang, Jing-Jia; Tang, Chih-Yung

    2016-01-18

    Voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels are essential for setting neuronal membrane excitability. Mutations in human Kv1.1 channels are linked to episodic ataxia type 1 (EA1). The EA1-associated mutation I262T was identified from a patient with atypical phenotypes. Although a previous report has characterized its suppression effect, several key questions regarding the impact of the I262T mutation on Kv1.1 as well as other members of the Kv1 subfamily remain unanswered. Herein we show that the dominant-negative effect of I262T on Kv1.1 current expression is not reversed by co-expression with Kvβ1.1 or Kvβ2 subunits. Biochemical examinations indicate that I262T displays enhanced protein degradation and impedes membrane trafficking of Kv1.1 wild-type subunits. I262T appears to be the first EA1 mutation directly associated with impaired protein stability. Further functional analyses demonstrate that I262T changes the voltage-dependent activation and Kvβ1.1-mediated inactivation, uncouples inactivation from activation gating, and decelerates the kinetics of cumulative inactivation of Kv1.1 channels. I262T also exerts similar dominant effects on the gating of Kv1.2 and Kv1.4 channels. Together our data suggest that I262T confers altered channel gating and reduced functional expression of Kv1 channels, which may account for some of the phenotypes of the EA1 patient.

  9. Processing solubility enhancement and Nanoparticles dispersion enhanced Performance Materials through thermomagnetic processing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ludtka, Gerard Michael [ORNL; Ludtka, Gail Mackiewicz- [ORNL; Rios, Orlando [ORNL; Kisner, Roger A [ORNL; Muralidharan, Govindarajan [ORNL; Manuel, Michele Viola [University of Florida, Gainesville; Manuel, Michele [University of Florida, Gainesville

    2012-01-01

    This research demonstrates that significantly enhanced materials microstructures and improved performance can be achieved by coupling two previously independent materials research concepts, namely, the thermo-magnetic processing (T-MP)1 and the electromagnetic acoustic transducer (EMAT)2 technologies. In prior, separate NHMFL research endeavors, ORNL researchers have demonstrated that: (1) thermo-magnetic processing (T-MP) can significantly enhance Ni solubility in Fe by up to 30%; and (2) using the electromagnetic acoustic transducer (EMAT) technology can significantly improve cast product homogeneity. Based on these earlier successful results, we proposed simultaneously coupling these two R&D approaches/eff ects (i.e., T-MP with EMAT), in order to simultaneously achieve: (1) enhanced elemental solid-solubility in Mg and in at least one Fe-based alloy; and (2) uniform dispersion of intentional additions of inert nanoparticles in Mg. Developing homogeneous dispersions of inert nanoparticles is and has been pursued as one of the holy grails for achieving unprecedented materials performance and highly desired mechanical properties, e.g., in creep and oxidation resistant alloys. Successfully coupling these two technologies would provide the ability to create uniquely controlled nano-scale microstructures that currently are unachievable by any other materials processing technologies.

  10. Cloning, chromosomal localization, and functional expression of the alpha 1 subunit of the L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel from normal human heart

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schultz, D; Mikala, G; Yatani, A; Engle, D B; Iles, D E; Segers, B; Sinke, R J; Weghuis, D O; Klöckner, U; Wakamori, M

    1993-01-01

    A unique structural variant of the cardiac L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel alpha 1 subunit cDNA was isolated from libraries derived from normal human heart mRNA. The deduced amino acid sequence shows significant homology to other calcium channel alpha 1 subunits. However, differences from t

  11. Lack of negatively charged residues at the external mouth of Kir2.2 channels enable the voltage-dependent block by external Mg2+.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junwei Li

    Full Text Available Kir channels display voltage-dependent block by cytosolic cations such as Mg2+ and polyamines that causes inward rectification. In fact, cations can regulate K channel activity from both the extracellular and intracellular sides. Previous studies have provided insight into the up-regulation of Kir channel activity by extracellular K+ concentration. In contrast, extracellular Mg2+ has been found to reduce the amplitude of the single-channel current at milimolar concentrations. However, little is known about the molecular mechanism of Kir channel blockade by external Mg2+ and the relationship between the Mg2+ blockade and activity potentiation by permeant K+ ions. In this study, we applied an interactive approach between theory and experiment. Electrophysiological recordings on Kir2.2 and its mutants were performed by heterologous expression in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Our results confirmed that extracellular Mg2+ could reduce heterologously expressed WT Kir2.2 currents in a voltage dependent manner. The kinetics of inhibition and recovery of Mg2+ exhibit a 3∼4s time constant. Molecular dynamics simulation results revealed a Mg2+ binding site located at the extracellular mouth of Kir2.2 that showed voltage-dependent Mg2+ binding. The mutants, G119D, Q126E and H128D, increased the number of permeant K+ ions and reduced the voltage-dependent blockade of Kir2.2 by extracellular Mg2+.

  12. Image processing for flight crew enhanced situation awareness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Barry

    1993-01-01

    This presentation describes the image processing work that is being performed for the Enhanced Situational Awareness System (ESAS) application. Specifically, the presented work supports the Enhanced Vision System (EVS) component of ESAS.

  13. The sea anemone Bunodosoma caissarum toxin BcIII modulates the sodium current kinetics of rat dorsal root ganglia neurons and is displaced in a voltage-dependent manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salceda, Emilio; López, Omar; Zaharenko, André J; Garateix, Anoland; Soto, Enrique

    2010-03-01

    Sea anemone toxins bind to site 3 of the sodium channels, which is partially formed by the extracellular linker connecting S3 and S4 segments of domain IV, slowing down the inactivation process. In this work we have characterized the actions of BcIII, a sea anemone polypeptide toxin isolated from Bunodosoma caissarum, on neuronal sodium currents using the patch clamp technique. Neurons of the dorsal root ganglia of Wistar rats (P5-9) in primary culture were used for this study (n=65). The main effects of BcIII were a concentration-dependent increase in the sodium current inactivation time course (IC(50)=2.8 microM) as well as an increase in the current peak amplitude. BcIII did not modify the voltage at which 50% of the channels are activated or inactivated, nor the reversal potential of sodium current. BcIII shows a voltage-dependent action. A progressive acceleration of sodium current fast inactivation with longer conditioning pulses was observed, which was steeper as more depolarizing were the prepulses. The same was observed for other two anemone toxins (CgNa, from Condylactis gigantea and ATX-II, from Anemonia viridis). These results suggest that the binding affinity of sea anemone toxins may be reduced in a voltage-dependent manner, as has been described for alpha-scorpion toxins.

  14. Enhanced parametric processes in binary metamaterials

    OpenAIRE

    Gorkunov, Maxim V.; Shadrivov, Ilya V.; Kivshar, Yuri S.

    2005-01-01

    We suggest double-resonant (binary) metamaterials composed of two types of magnetic resonant elements, and demonstrate that in the nonlinear regime such metamaterials provide unique possibilities for phase-matched parametric interaction and enhanced second-harmonic generation.

  15. Hippocampal Processing of Ambiguity Enhances Fear Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amadi, Ugwechi; Lim, Seh Hong; Liu, Elizabeth; Baratta, Michael V; Goosens, Ki A

    2017-02-01

    Despite the ubiquitous use of Pavlovian fear conditioning as a model for fear learning, the highly predictable conditions used in the laboratory do not resemble real-world conditions, in which dangerous situations can lead to unpleasant outcomes in unpredictable ways. In the current experiments, we varied the timing of aversive events after predictive cues in rodents and discovered that temporal ambiguity of aversive events greatly enhances fear. During fear conditioning with unpredictably timed aversive events, pharmacological inactivation of the dorsal hippocampus or optogenetic silencing of cornu ammonis 1 cells during aversive negative prediction errors prevented this enhancement of fear without affecting fear learning for predictable events. Dorsal hippocampal inactivation also prevented ambiguity-related enhancement of fear during auditory fear conditioning under a partial-reinforcement schedule. These results reveal that information about the timing and occurrence of aversive events is rapidly acquired and that unexpectedly timed or omitted aversive events generate hippocampal signals to enhance fear learning.

  16. Altered ischemic cerebral injury in mice lacking αIE subunit of the voltage-dependent Ca2+ channel

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Objective ①To set up a stable and reproducible focal cerebral infarct modelin mice; (②To examine theinvolvement of αIE subunit of voltage-dependent Ca2 + channel in cerebral ischemic injury. Methods Male C57BL/6J Jclmice 8 ~ 12w and F4 ~ F6αIE subunit of Ca2+ channel mutant mice were both used in this study. All animals were allowedto freely access to food and water before and after operation. Animals were anesthetized with pentobarbital sodium 60mg/kg,ip. Rectal temperature was continuously monitored before, during and after operation, and maintained at (36.6 +0.1 )°C by a autoregulating pad. To produce pilot models, the middle cerebral artery (MCA) was occluded either by sur-gical ligation or electrical coagulation and in some models the common carotid artery (CCA) was surgically ligated in tan-dem. In our latter work the MCA was cut off soon after it was ligated or coagulated in order to make sure that the bloodflow was occluded completely. The MCA was coagulated or ligated with a bipolar coagulator or microsurgery suture at thesite just superior to the rhinal fissure. Twenty~four hours after the operation, the mice were anesthetized and decapitated,then their brains were dissected from the skull and put into cold artificial brain spinal fluid as soon as possible. Lmm thickcoronal sections were cut by vibratome and stained with 2% 2,3,5-triphenyltetrazolium chloride (TTC) at 37°C for30min. Every section was photographed positively and the whole infarction volume was calculated by summing up the in-farction volumes of all sections by NIH Image System. Infarction ratio ( % ) was also calculated by the following fommula:(contralateral volume-ipsilateral undamaged volume)/contralateral volume × 100% to eliminate the influence of edema.In brief, the mutant mice were produced with gene targeting technique. F4 ~ F6 mice were used in this experiment. Alloffsprings were genotyped by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and the genotypes remained umknown

  17. Voltage dependence of Hodgkin-Huxley rate functions for a multistage K^{+} channel voltage sensor within a membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaccaro, S R

    2014-11-01

    The activation of a K^{+} channel sensor in two sequential stages during a voltage clamp may be described as the translocation of a Brownian particle in an energy landscape with two large barriers between states. A solution of the Smoluchowski equation for a square-well approximation to the potential function of the S4 voltage sensor satisfies a master equation and has two frequencies that may be determined from the forward and backward rate functions. When the higher-frequency terms have small amplitude, the solution reduces to the relaxation of a rate equation, where the derived two-state rate functions are dependent on the relative magnitude of the forward rates (α and γ) and the backward rates (β and δ) for each stage. In particular, the voltage dependence of the Hodgkin-Huxley rate functions for a K^{+} channel may be derived by assuming that the rate functions of the first stage are large relative to those of the second stage-α≫γ and β≫δ. For a Shaker IR K^{+} channel, the first forward and backward transitions are rate limiting (αchannel and a noninactivating Na^{+} ion channel is determined by the master equation for K^{+} channel activation and the ionic current equation when the Na^{+} channel activation time is small, and if β≪δ and α≪γ, the system may exhibit a small amplitude oscillation between spikes, or mixed-mode oscillation, in which the slow closed state modulates the K^{+} ion channel conductance in the membrane.

  18. Voltage-dependent ionic channels in differentiating neural precursor cells collected from adult mouse brains six hours post-mortem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bellardita, Carmelo; Bolzoni, Francesco; Sorosina, Melissa; Marfia, Giovanni; Carelli, Stephana; Gorio, Alfredo; Formenti, Alessandro

    2012-04-01

    A novel type of adult neural precursor cells (NPCs) has been isolated from the subventricular zone of the mouse 6 hr after animal death (T6-NPCs). This condition is supposed to select hypoxia-resistant cells of scientific and clinical interest. Ionic channels are ultimately the expression of the functional maturation of neurons, so the aim of this research was to characterize the pattern of the main voltage-dependent ionic channels in T6-NPCs differentiating to a neuronal phenotype, comparing it with NPCs isolated soon after death (T0-NPCs). T6- and T0-NPCs grow in medium containing epidermal growth factor (EGF) and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF). Differentiation was performed in small wells without the addition of growth factors, in the presence of adhesion molecules, fetal bovine serum, and leukemia inhibitory factor. Ionic currents, recorded by means of whole-cell patch-clamp, namely, I(Ca2+) HVA, both L- and non-L-type, I(K+) delayed rectifying, I(K+) inward rectifier, transient I(K+A) , and TTX-sensitive I(Na+) have been found, although Na(+) currents were found in only a small percentage of cells and after the fifth week of differentiation. No significant differences in current types, density, orcell capacitance were observed between T6-NPCs and T0-NPCs. The sequence in which the markers appear in new neural cells is not necessarily a fixed program, but the discrepancies in morphological, biochemical, and electrophysiological maturation of mouse NPCs to neurons, possibly different in vivo, suggest that the various steps of the differentiation are independently regulated. Therefore, in addition to morphological and biochemical data, functional tests should be considered for characterizing the maturation of neurons.

  19. The Voltage-dependent Anion Channel 1 Mediates Amyloid β Toxicity and Represents a Potential Target for Alzheimer Disease Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smilansky, Angela; Dangoor, Liron; Nakdimon, Itay; Ben-Hail, Danya; Mizrachi, Dario; Shoshan-Barmatz, Varda

    2015-12-25

    The voltage-dependent anion channel 1 (VDAC1), found in the mitochondrial outer membrane, forms the main interface between mitochondrial and cellular metabolisms, mediates the passage of a variety of molecules across the mitochondrial outer membrane, and is central to mitochondria-mediated apoptosis. VDAC1 is overexpressed in post-mortem brains of Alzheimer disease (AD) patients. The development and progress of AD are associated with mitochondrial dysfunction resulting from the cytotoxic effects of accumulated amyloid β (Aβ). In this study we demonstrate the involvement of VDAC1 and a VDAC1 N-terminal peptide (VDAC1-N-Ter) in Aβ cell penetration and cell death induction. Aβ directly interacted with VDAC1 and VDAC1-N-Ter, as monitored by VDAC1 channel conductance, surface plasmon resonance, and microscale thermophoresis. Preincubated Aβ interacted with bilayer-reconstituted VDAC1 and increased its conductance ∼ 2-fold. Incubation of cells with Aβ resulted in mitochondria-mediated apoptotic cell death. However, the presence of non-cell-penetrating VDAC1-N-Ter peptide prevented Aβ cellular entry and Aβ-induced mitochondria-mediated apoptosis. Likewise, silencing VDAC1 expression by specific siRNA prevented Aβ entry into the cytosol as well as Aβ-induced toxicity. Finally, the mode of Aβ-mediated action involves detachment of mitochondria-bound hexokinase, induction of VDAC1 oligomerization, and cytochrome c release, a sequence of events leading to apoptosis. As such, we suggest that Aβ-mediated toxicity involves mitochondrial and plasma membrane VDAC1, leading to mitochondrial dysfunction and apoptosis induction. The VDAC1-N-Ter peptide targeting Aβ cytotoxicity is thus a potential new therapeutic strategy for AD treatment.

  20. Photoaffinity labeling with cholesterol analogues precisely maps a cholesterol-binding site in voltage-dependent anion channel-1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Budelier, Melissa M; Cheng, Wayland W L; Bergdoll, Lucie; Chen, Zi-Wei; Janetka, James W; Abramson, Jeff; Krishnan, Kathiresan; Mydock-McGrane, Laurel; Covey, Douglas F; Whitelegge, Julian P; Evers, Alex S

    2017-06-02

    Voltage-dependent anion channel-1 (VDAC1) is a highly regulated β-barrel membrane protein that mediates transport of ions and metabolites between the mitochondria and cytosol of the cell. VDAC1 co-purifies with cholesterol and is functionally regulated by cholesterol, among other endogenous lipids. Molecular modeling studies based on NMR observations have suggested five cholesterol-binding sites in VDAC1, but direct experimental evidence for these sites is lacking. Here, to determine the sites of cholesterol binding, we photolabeled purified mouse VDAC1 (mVDAC1) with photoactivatable cholesterol analogues and analyzed the photolabeled sites with both top-down mass spectrometry (MS), and bottom-up MS paired with a clickable, stable isotope-labeled tag, FLI-tag. Using cholesterol analogues with a diazirine in either the 7 position of the steroid ring (LKM38) or the aliphatic tail (KK174), we mapped a binding pocket in mVDAC1 localized to Thr(83) and Glu(73), respectively. When Glu(73) was mutated to a glutamine, KK174 no longer photolabeled this residue, but instead labeled the nearby Tyr(62) within this same binding pocket. The combination of analytical strategies employed in this work permits detailed molecular mapping of a cholesterol-binding site in a protein, including an orientation of the sterol within the site. Our work raises the interesting possibility that cholesterol-mediated regulation of VDAC1 may be facilitated through a specific binding site at the functionally important Glu(73) residue. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  1. Charged residues distribution modulates selectivity of the open state of human isoforms of the voltage dependent anion-selective channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amodeo, Giuseppe Federico; Scorciapino, Mariano Andrea; Messina, Angela; De Pinto, Vito; Ceccarelli, Matteo

    2014-01-01

    Voltage Dependent Anion-selective Channels (VDACs) are pore-forming proteins located in the outer mitochondrial membrane. They are responsible for the access of ions and energetic metabolites into the inner membrane transport systems. Three VDAC isoforms exist in mammalian, but their specific role is unknown. In this work we have performed extensive (overall ∼5 µs) Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations of the human VDAC isoforms to detect structural and conformational variations among them, possibly related to specific functional roles of these proteins. Secondary structure analysis of the N-terminal domain shows a high similarity among the three human isoforms of VDAC but with a different plasticity. In particular, the N-terminal domain of the hVDAC1 is characterized by a higher plasticity, with a ∼20% occurrence for the 'unstructured' conformation throughout the folded segment, while hVDAC2, containing a peculiar extension of 11 amino acids at the N-terminal end, presents an additional 310-helical folded portion comprising residues 10' to 3, adhering to the barrel wall. The N-terminal sequences of hVDAC isoforms are predicted to have a low flexibility, with possible consequences in the dynamics of the human VDACs. Clear differences were found between hVDAC1 and hVDAC3 against hVDAC2: a significantly modified dynamics with possible important consequence on the voltage-gating mechanism. Charge distribution inside and at the mouth of the pore is responsible for a different preferential localization of ions with opposite charge and provide a valuable rationale for hVDAC1 and hVDAC3 having a Cl-/K+ selectivity ratio of 1.8, whereas hVDAC2 of 1.4. Our conclusion is that hVDAC isoforms, despite sharing a similar scaffold, have modified working features and a biological work is now requested to give evidence to the described dissimilarities.

  2. Transient voltage-dependent potassium currents are reduced in NTS neurons isolated from renal wrap hypertensive rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belugin, Sergei; Mifflin, Steve

    2005-12-01

    Whole cell patch-clamp measurements were made in neurons enzymatically dispersed from the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) to determine if alterations occur in voltage-dependent potassium channels from rats made hypertensive (HT) by unilateral nephrectomy/renal wrap for 4 wk. Some rats had the fluorescent tracer DiA applied to the aortic nerve before the experiment to identify NTS neurons receiving monosynaptic baroreceptor afferent inputs. Mean arterial pressure (MAP) was greater in 4-wk HT (165 +/- 5 mmHg, n = 26, P NTS neurons from NT and HT rats. At activation voltages from -10 to +10 mV, TOCs were significantly less in HT neurons compared with those observed in NT neurons (P NTS neurons from NT and HT rats and was not different comparing neurons from NT and HT rats. However, examination of the subset of NTS neurons exhibiting somatic DiA fluorescence revealed that DiA-labeled neurons from HT rats had a significantly shorter duration delayed excitation (n = 8 cells, P = 0.022) than DiA-labeled neurons from NT rats (n = 7 cells). Neurons with delayed excitation from HT rats had a significantly broader first action potential (AP) and a slower maximal downstroke velocity of repolarization compared with NT neurons with delayed excitation (P = 0.016 and P = 0.014, respectively). The number of APs in the first 200 ms of a sustained depolarization was greater in HT than NT neurons (P = 0.012). These results suggest that HT of 4-wk duration reduces TOCs in NTS neurons, and this contributes to reduced delayed excitation and increased AP responses to depolarizing inputs. Such changes could alter baroreflex function in hypertension.

  3. Delta receptors are required for full inhibitory coupling of mu-receptors to voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels in dorsal root ganglion neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walwyn, Wendy; John, Scott; Maga, Matthew; Evans, Christopher J; Hales, Tim G

    2009-07-01

    Recombinant micro and delta opioid receptors expressed in cell lines can form heterodimers with distinctive properties and trafficking. However, a role for opioid receptor heterodimerization in neurons has yet to be identified. The inhibitory coupling of opioid receptors to voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels (VDCCs) is a relatively inefficient process and therefore provides a sensitive assay of altered opioid receptor function and expression. We examined micro-receptor coupling to VDCCs in dorsal root ganglion neurons of delta(+/+), delta(+/-), and delta(-/-) mice. Neurons deficient in delta receptors exhibited reduced inhibition of VDCCs by morphine and [D-Ala(2),Phe(4),Gly(5)-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO). An absence of delta receptors caused reduced efficacy of DAMGO without affecting potency. An absence of delta receptors reduced neither the density of VDCCs nor their inhibition by either the GABA(B) receptor agonist baclofen or intracellular guanosine 5'-O-(3-thio)triphosphate. Flow cytometry revealed a reduction in micro-receptor surface expression in delta(-/-) neurons without altered DAMGO-induced internalization. There was no change in micro-receptor mRNA levels. D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Arg-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH(2)-sensitive mu-receptor-coupling efficacy was fully restored to delta(+/+) levels in delta(-/-) neurons by expression of recombinant delta receptors. However, the dimerization-deficient delta-15 construct expressed in delta(-/-) neurons failed to fully restore the inhibitory coupling of micro-receptors compared with that seen in delta(+/+) neurons, suggesting that, although not essential for micro-receptor function, micro-delta receptor dimerization contributes to full micro-agonist efficacy. Because DAMGO exhibited a similar potency in delta(+/+) and delta(-/-) neurons and caused similar levels of internalization, the role for heterodimerization is probably at the level of receptor biosynthesis.

  4. Voltage-dependent anion channels (VDACs) promote mitophagy to protect neuron from death in an early brain injury following a subarachnoid hemorrhage in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jian; Lu, Jianfei; Mi, Yongjie; Shi, Zhao; Chen, Chunhua; Riley, John; Zhou, Changman

    2014-07-21

    The term mitophagy is coined to describe the selective removal of mitochondria by autophagy but the process itself is still contentious, especially in the early period following subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH). In the present study, we investigated the role of mitophagy following 48h after SAH injury in rats. Specifically evaluating whether mitophagy, through voltage dependant anion channels (VDACs) interacting with microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3, could orchestrate the induction of apoptotic and necrotic cell death in neurons, a VDAC1siRNA and an activitor Rapamycian (RAPA), were engaged. One hundred and twelve male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 4 groups: Sham, SAH, SAH+VDAC1siRNA, and SAH+RAPA. Outcomes measured included mortality rate, brain edema, BBB disruption, and neurobehavioral testing. We also used western blotting techniques to analyze the expressions of key mitophagic/autophagic proteins and pro-apoptotic protein such as ROS, VDAC1, LC-3II and Caspase-3. Rapamycin treatment significantly improved the mortality rate, cerebral edema, and neurobehavioral deficits; apoptotic and necrotic cell death in neurons were reduced by Rapamycin following SAH injury. However, VDAC1siRNA worsened the brain injury following SAH. Immunohistochemical staining and western blot analysis demonstrated a decreased expression of VDAC1, LC3II, and an increase of ROS and Caspase-3 followed by VDAC1siRNA administration. In conclusion, mitophagy induced by VDAC1 following SAH injury may in fact play a significant role in neuroprotection, the mechanism which may be through the attenuation of the apoptosic and necrosic molecular pathways. This translates a preservation of functional integrity and an improvement in mortality.

  5. Study of Image Processing, Enhancement and Restoration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bhausaheb Shivajirao Shinde

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Digital image processing is a means by which the valuable information in observed raw image data can be revealed. A web-based image processing pipeline was created under the ambitious educational program Venus Transit 2004 (VT-2004. The active participants in the VT-2004 can apply the basic processing methods to the images obtained by their amateur telescopes and/or they can process an image observed at any observatory involved in the project. The processed result image is displayed immediately on the display. Above that all participants can follow the distance Sun-Venus centers computation performed at the professional observatory in the real time. There is a possibility to submit an image from their own observation into the database. It will be used for the distance Earth-Sun computation.

  6. Process mining discovery, conformance and enhancement of business processes

    CERN Document Server

    van der Aalst, Wil M P

    2011-01-01

    The first to cover this missing link between data mining and process modeling, this book provides real-world techniques for monitoring and analyzing processes in real time. It is a powerful new tool destined to play a key role in business process management.

  7. Negative emotional stimuli enhance vestibular processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Preuss, Nora; Ellis, Andrew W; Mast, Fred W

    2015-08-01

    Recent studies have shown that vestibular stimulation can influence affective processes. In the present study, we examined whether emotional information can also modulate vestibular perception. Participants performed a vestibular discrimination task on a motion platform while viewing emotional pictures. Six different picture categories were taken from the International Affective Picture System: mutilation, threat, snakes, neutral objects, sports, and erotic pictures. Using a Bayesian hierarchical approach, we were able to show that vestibular discrimination improved when participants viewed emotionally negative pictures (mutilation, threat, snake) when compared to neutral/positive objects. We conclude that some of the mechanisms involved in the processing of vestibular information are also sensitive to emotional content. Emotional information signals importance and mobilizes the body for action. In case of danger, a successful motor response requires precise vestibular processing. Therefore, negative emotional information improves processing of vestibular information. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Time-resolved photoluminescence measurements for determining voltage-dependent charge-separation efficiencies of subcells in triple-junction solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tex, David M.; Ihara, Toshiyuki; Akiyama, Hidefumi; Imaizumi, Mitsuru; Kanemitsu, Yoshihiko

    2015-01-01

    Conventional external quantum-efficiency measurement of solar cells provides charge-collection efficiency for approximate short-circuit conditions. Because this differs from actual operating voltages, the optimization of high-quality tandem solar cells is especially complicated. Here, we propose a contactless method, which allows for the determination of the voltage dependence of charge-collection efficiency for each subcell independently. By investigating the power dependence of photoluminescence decays, charge-separation and recombination-loss time constants are obtained. The upper limit of the charge-collection efficiencies at the operating points is then obtained by applying the uniform field model. This technique may complement electrical characterization of the voltage dependence of charge collection, since subcells are directly accessible.

  9. Enhanced Mixed Feedstock Processing Using Ionic Liquids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Simmons, Blake A [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States)

    2016-10-22

    Biomass pretreatment using certain ionic liquids (ILs) is very efficient, generally producing a substrate that is amenable to saccharification with fermentable sugar yields approaching theoretical limits. Although promising, several challenges must be addressed before IL pretreatment technology becomes commercially viable. Once of the most significant challenges is the affordable and scalable recovery and recycle or the IL itself. Pervaporation is a highly selective and scalable membrane separation process for quantitatively recovering volatile solutes or solvents directly from non-volatile solvents that could prove more versatile for IL dehydration than traditional solvent extraction processes, as well as efficient and energetically more advantageous than standard evaporative techniques. In this study we evaluated a commercially available pervaporation system for IL dehydration and recycling as part of an integrated IL pretreatment process using 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium acetate ([C2C1Im][OAc]) that has been proven to be very effective as a biomass pretreatment solvent. We demonstrate that >99.9 wt% [C2C1Im][OAc] can be recovered from aqueous solution and recycled at least five times. A preliminary techno-economic analysis validated the promising role of pervaporation in improving overall biorefinery process economics, especially in the case where other IL recovery technologies might lead to significant losses. These findings establish the foundation for further development of pervaporation as an effective method of recovering and recycling ILs using a commercially viable process technology.

  10. An enhanced relative spectral processing of speech

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHEN Bin; WU Xihong; LIU Zhimin; CHI Huisheng

    2002-01-01

    An enhanced relative spectral (E_RASTA) technique for speech and speaker recognition is proposed. The new method consists of classical RASTA filtering in logarithmic spectral domain following by another additive RASTA filtering in the same domain. In this manner,both the channel distortion and additive noise are removed effectively. In speaker identification and speech recognition experiments on TI46 database, the E_RASTA performs equal or better than J_RASTA method in both tasks. The E_RASTA does not need the speech SNR estimation in order to determinate the optimal value of J in J_RASTA, and the information of how the speech degrades. The choice of E_RASTA filter also indicates that the low temporal modulation components in speech can deteriorate the performance of both recognition tasks. Besides, the speaker recognition needs less temporal modulation frequency band than that of the speech recognition.

  11. Intelligence amplification framework for enhancing scheduling processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dobrkovic, Andrej; Liu, Luyao; Iacob, Maria-Eugenia; Hillegersberg, van Jos

    2016-01-01

    The scheduling process in a typical business environment consists of predominantly repetitive tasks that have to be completed in limited time and often containing some form of uncertainty. The intelligence amplification is a symbiotic relationship between a human and an intelligent agent. This partn

  12. Enhancing visuospatial processing skills in children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chabani, Elaheh (Ellahe)

    2014-01-01

    Growing evidence highlights the importance of visual-spatial processing skills (VSPS) but teaching and training of these skills at early age in schools remain understudied. To this end, we have developed a computerized application called TangSolver that aim to move one step toward assessment and tra

  13. Intelligence amplification framework for enhancing scheduling processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dobrkovic, Andrej; Liu, Luyao; Iacob, Maria Eugenia; van Hillegersberg, Jos

    2016-01-01

    The scheduling process in a typical business environment consists of predominantly repetitive tasks that have to be completed in limited time and often containing some form of uncertainty. The intelligence amplification is a symbiotic relationship between a human and an intelligent agent. This

  14. Decision enhancement and business process agility

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amiyo, Mercy Rebecca

    2012-01-01

    Business Process Agility (BPA) is het vermogen om bedrijfsprocessen snel en correct aan te passen, als reactie op interne en externe veranderingen in de bedrijfsomgeving, ook als hiervoor geen vooraf gedefiniëerde richtlijnen voor zijn. Organisaties zijn steeds meer op zoek naar manieren om agile te

  15. Voltage-dependent capacitance behavior and underlying mechanisms in metal-insulator-metal capacitors with Al2O3-ZrO2-SiO2 nano-laminates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Bao; Liu, Wen-Jun; Wei, Lei; Ding, Shi-Jin

    2016-04-01

    Nano-laminates consisting of high-permittivity dielectrics and SiO2 have been extensively studied for radio frequency metal-insulator-metal (MIM) capacitors because of their superior voltage linearity and low leakage current. However, there are no reports on the capacitance-voltage (C-V) characteristics at a high sweep voltage range. In this work, an interesting variation in the voltage-dependent capacitance that forms a ‘ω’-like shape is demonstrated for the MIM capacitors with Al2O3/ZrO2/SiO2 nano-laminates. As the thickness ratio of the SiO2 film to the total insulator increases to around 0.15, the C-V curve changes from an upward parabolic shape to a ‘ω’ shape. This can be explained based on the competition between the orientation polarization from SiO2 and the electrode polarization from Al2O3 and ZrO2. When the SiO2 film is very thin, the electrode polarization dominates in the MIM capacitor, generating a positive curvature C-V curve. When the thickness of SiO2 is increased, the orientation polarization is enhanced and thus both polarizations are operating in the MIM capacitors. This leads to the appearance of a multiple domain C-V curve containing positive and negative curvatures. Therefore, good consistency between the experimental results and the theoretical simulations is demonstrated. Such voltage-dependent capacitance behavior is not determined by the stack structure of the insulator, measurement frequency and oscillator voltage, but by the thickness ratio of the SiO2 film to the whole insulator. These findings are helpful to engineer MIM capacitors with good voltage linearity.

  16. Fuzzy Logic Enhanced Digital PIV Processing Software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wernet, Mark P.

    1999-01-01

    Digital Particle Image Velocimetry (DPIV) is an instantaneous, planar velocity measurement technique that is ideally suited for studying transient flow phenomena in high speed turbomachinery. DPIV is being actively used at the NASA Glenn Research Center to study both stable and unstable operating conditions in a high speed centrifugal compressor. Commercial PIV systems are readily available which provide near real time feedback of the PIV image data quality. These commercial systems are well designed to facilitate the expedient acquisition of PIV image data. However, as with any general purpose system, these commercial PIV systems do not meet all of the data processing needs required for PIV image data reduction in our compressor research program. An in-house PIV PROCessing (PIVPROC) code has been developed for reducing PIV data. The PIVPROC software incorporates fuzzy logic data validation for maximum information recovery from PIV image data. PIVPROC enables combined cross-correlation/particle tracking wherein the highest possible spatial resolution velocity measurements are obtained.

  17. Enhanced substrate conversion efficiency of fermentation processes

    OpenAIRE

    Sanders, J.P.M.; Weusthuis, R.A.; Mooibroek, H.

    2006-01-01

    The present invention relates to the field of fermentation technology. In particular the invention relates to fermentation processes for the production of a first and a second fermentation product by a single production organism wherein the first product is in a more reduced state than the substrate and the second fermentation product is in a more oxidised state than the substrate yet in less oxidised state than the final oxidation product CO2, such that the concurrent synthesis of the first ...

  18. r-Process Enhanced Halo Stars

    CERN Document Server

    Cowan, J J; Lawler, J E; Den Hartog, E A

    2006-01-01

    Abundance observations indicate the presence of rapid-neutron capture (i.e., r-process) elements in old Galactic halo and globular cluster stars. These observations provide insight into the nature of the earliest generations of stars in the Galaxy -- the progenitors of the halo stars -- responsible for neutron-capture synthesis of the heavy elements. The large star-to-star scatter observed in the abundances of neutron-capture element/iron ratios at low metallicities -- which diminishes with increasing metallicity or [Fe/H] -- suggests the formation of these heavy elements (presumably from certain types of supernovae) was rare in the early Galaxy. The stellar abundances also indicate a change from the r-process to the slow neutron capture (i.e., s-) process at higher metallicities in the Galaxy and provide insight into Galactic chemical evolution. Finally, the detection of thorium and uranium in halo and globular cluster stars offers an independent age-dating technique that can put lower limits on the age of t...

  19. Voltage-dependent regulation of CaV2.2 channels by Gq-coupled receptor is facilitated by membrane-localized β subunit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keum, Dongil; Baek, Christina; Kim, Dong-Il; Kweon, Hae-Jin; Suh, Byung-Chang

    2014-10-01

    G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) signal through molecular messengers, such as Gβγ, Ca(2+), and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2), to modulate N-type voltage-gated Ca(2+) (CaV2.2) channels, playing a crucial role in regulating synaptic transmission. However, the cellular pathways through which GqPCRs inhibit CaV2.2 channel current are not completely understood. Here, we report that the location of CaV β subunits is key to determining the voltage dependence of CaV2.2 channel modulation by GqPCRs. Application of the muscarinic agonist oxotremorine-M to tsA-201 cells expressing M1 receptors, together with CaV N-type α1B, α2δ1, and membrane-localized β2a subunits, shifted the current-voltage relationship for CaV2.2 activation 5 mV to the right and slowed current activation. Muscarinic suppression of CaV2.2 activity was relieved by strong depolarizing prepulses. Moreover, when the C terminus of β-adrenergic receptor kinase (which binds Gβγ) was coexpressed with N-type channels, inhibition of CaV2.2 current after M1 receptor activation was markedly reduced and delayed, whereas the delay between PIP2 hydrolysis and inhibition of CaV2.2 current was decreased. When the Gβγ-insensitive CaV2.2 α1C-1B chimera was expressed, voltage-dependent inhibition of calcium current was virtually abolished, suggesting that M1 receptors act through Gβγ to inhibit CaV2.2 channels bearing membrane-localized CaV β2a subunits. Expression of cytosolic β subunits such as β2b and β3, as well as the palmitoylation-negative mutant β2a(C3,4S), reduced the voltage dependence of M1 muscarinic inhibition of CaV2.2 channels, whereas it increased inhibition mediated by PIP2 depletion. Together, our results indicate that, with membrane-localized CaV β subunits, CaV2.2 channels are subject to Gβγ-mediated voltage-dependent inhibition, whereas cytosol-localized β subunits confer more effective PIP2-mediated voltage-independent regulation. Thus, the voltage dependence of

  20. Unattended musical beats enhance visual processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escoffier, Nicolas; Sheng, Darren Yeo Jian; Schirmer, Annett

    2010-09-01

    The present study investigated whether and how a musical rhythm entrains a listener's visual attention. To this end, participants were presented with pictures of faces and houses and indicated whether picture orientation was upright or inverted. Participants performed this task in silence or with a musical rhythm playing in the background. In the latter condition, pictures could occur off-beat or on a rhythmically implied, silent beat. Pictures presented without the musical rhythm and off-beat were responded to more slowly than pictures presented on-beat. This effect was comparable for faces and houses. Together these results indicate that musical rhythm both synchronizes and facilitates concurrent stimulus processing.

  1. Breast restoration decision making: enhancing the process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reaby, L L

    1998-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore the breast restoration decision-making patterns used by women who opted to have their breast cancer treated by mastectomy. Sixty-four women wearing external breast prostheses and 31 women with breast reconstructions were interviewed. Modified versions of Simon's notion of "bounded rationality" and Janis and Mann's conflict model provided the conceptual scaffolding for the study. Five breast restoration decision-making patterns emerged from the analysis of the interview data: (a) Enlightened (actively seeks information, considers positive and negative aspects, and demonstrates deliberation on the alternatives), (b) Contented (passively accepts minimum information on alternatives because of a preference toward a particular type), (c) Sideliner (uncritically adopts any alternative that is easy and simple to implement), (d) Shifter (gives over the decision to others), and (e) Panic-stricken (can make no rational decision on alternatives). In the prosthesis group, the major pattern used was the Sideliner, and in the reconstruction group it was the Contented. None of the participants used the Enlightened pattern. The data indicated that there was no evidence of active information-seeking behavior or deliberation on the alternatives as part of the women's decision-making process. The findings suggest a need for a registered nurse oncology specialist to be accessible to women during the period when decisions regarding breast restoration are made. This professional has the knowledge to interact effectively with these women and serve as their advocate during the decision-making process. Implications for professional practice and a model for competent breast restoration decision making are presented.

  2. IMAGE ENHANCEMENT USING IMAGE FUSION AND IMAGE PROCESSING TECHNIQUES

    OpenAIRE

    Arjun Nelikanti

    2015-01-01

    Principle objective of Image enhancement is to process an image so that result is more suitable than original image for specific application. Digital image enhancement techniques provide a multitude of choices for improving the visual quality of images. Appropriate choice of such techniques is greatly influenced by the imaging modality, task at hand and viewing conditions. This paper will provide a combination of two concepts, image fusion by DWT and digital image processing techniques. The e...

  3. Rab3 interacting molecule 3 mutations associated with autism alter regulation of voltage-dependent Ca²⁺ channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takada, Yoshinori; Hirano, Mitsuru; Kiyonaka, Shigeki; Ueda, Yoshifumi; Yamaguchi, Kazuma; Nakahara, Keiko; Mori, Masayuki X; Mori, Yasuo

    2015-09-01

    Autism is a neurodevelopmental psychiatric disorder characterized by impaired reciprocal social interaction, disrupted communication, and restricted and stereotyped patterns of interests. Autism is known to have a strong genetic component. Although mutations in several genes account for only a small proportion of individuals with autism, they provide insight into potential biological mechanisms that underlie autism, such as dysfunction in Ca(2+) signaling, synaptic dysfunction, and abnormal brain connectivity. In autism patients, two mutations have been reported in the Rab3 interacting molecule 3 (RIM3) gene. We have previously demonstrated that RIM3 physically and functionally interacts with voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels (VDCCs) expressed in neurons via the β subunits, and increases neurotransmitter release. Here, by introducing corresponding autism-associated mutations that replace glutamic acid residue 176 with alanine (E176A) and methionine residue 259 with valine (M259V) into the C2B domain of mouse RIM3, we demonstrate that both mutations partly cancel the suppressive RIM3 effect on voltage-dependent inactivation of Ba(2+) currents through P/Q-type CaV2.1 recombinantly expressed in HEK293 cells. In recombinant N-type CaV2.2 VDCCs, the attenuation of the suppressive RIM3 effect on voltage-dependent inactivation is conserved for M259V but not E176A. Slowing of activation speed of P/Q-type CaV2.1 currents by RIM3 is abolished in E176A, while the physical interaction between RIM3 and β subunits is significantly attenuated in M259V. Moreover, increases by RIM3 in depolarization-induced Ca(2+) influx and acetylcholine release are significantly attenuated by E176A in rat pheochromocytoma PC12 cells. Thus, our data raise the interesting possibility that autism phenotypes are elicited by synaptic dysfunction via altered regulation of presynaptic VDCC function and neurotransmitter release.

  4. Computer image processing - The Viking experience. [digital enhancement techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, W. B.

    1977-01-01

    Computer processing of digital imagery from the Viking mission to Mars is discussed, with attention given to subjective enhancement and quantitative processing. Contrast stretching and high-pass filtering techniques of subjective enhancement are described; algorithms developed to determine optimal stretch and filtering parameters are also mentioned. In addition, geometric transformations to rectify the distortion of shapes in the field of view and to alter the apparent viewpoint of the image are considered. Perhaps the most difficult problem in quantitative processing of Viking imagery was the production of accurate color representations of Orbiter and Lander camera images.

  5. Gαi2- and Gαi3-specific regulation of voltage-dependent L-type calcium channels in cardiomyocytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara Dizayee

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Two pertussis toxin sensitive G(i proteins, G(i2 and G(i3, are expressed in cardiomyocytes and upregulated in heart failure. It has been proposed that the highly homologous G(i isoforms are functionally distinct. To test for isoform-specific functions of G(i proteins, we examined their role in the regulation of cardiac L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels (L-VDCC. METHODS: Ventricular tissues and isolated myocytes were obtained from mice with targeted deletion of either Gα(i2 (Gα(i2 (-/- or Gα(i3 (Gα(i3 (-/-. mRNA levels of Gα(i/o isoforms and L-VDCC subunits were quantified by real-time PCR. Gα(i and Ca(vα(1 protein levels as well as protein kinase B/Akt and extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1/2 (ERK1/2 phosphorylation levels were assessed by immunoblot analysis. L-VDCC function was assessed by whole-cell and single-channel current recordings. RESULTS: In cardiac tissue from Gα(i2 (-/- mice, Gα(i3 mRNA and protein expression was upregulated to 187 ± 21% and 567 ± 59%, respectively. In Gα(i3 (-/- mouse hearts, Gα(i2 mRNA (127 ± 5% and protein (131 ± 10% levels were slightly enhanced. Interestingly, L-VDCC current density in cardiomyocytes from Gα(i2 (-/- mice was lowered (-7.9 ± 0.6 pA/pF, n = 11, p<0.05 compared to wild-type cells (-10.7 ± 0.5 pA/pF, n = 22, whereas it was increased in myocytes from Gα(i3 (-/- mice (-14.3 ± 0.8 pA/pF, n = 14, p<0.05. Steady-state inactivation was shifted to negative potentials, and recovery kinetics slowed in the absence of Gα(i2 (but not of Gα(i3 and following treatment with pertussis toxin in Gα(i3 (-/-. The pore forming Ca(vα(1 protein level was unchanged in all mouse models analyzed, similar to mRNA levels of Ca(vα(1 and Ca(vβ(2 subunits. Interestingly, at the cellular signalling level, phosphorylation assays revealed abolished carbachol-triggered activation of ERK1/2 in mice lacking Gα(i2. CONCLUSION: Our data provide novel evidence for an isoform

  6. Coexpression of voltage-dependent calcium channels Cav1.2, 2.1a, and 2.1b in vascular myocytes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andreasen, Ditte; Friis, Ulla Glenert; Uhrenholt, Torben Rene

    2006-01-01

    , and blocking P-type currents (omega-agatoxin IVA 10 nmol/L) led to 20.2+/-3.0% inhibition, whereas 300 nmol/L of omega agatoxin IVA (blocking P/Q-type) inhibited 45.0+/-7.3%. In rat aortic smooth muscle cells (A7r5), blockade of L-type channels resulted in 28.5+/-6.1% inhibition, simultaneous blockade of L...... microscopy revealed expression of both channels in all of the smooth muscle cells. Whole-cell patch clamp on single preglomerular VSMCs from mice showed L-, P-, and Q-type currents. Blockade of the L-type currents by calciseptine (20 nmol/L) inhibited 35.6+/-3.9% of the voltage-dependent Ca2+ current......-type and P-type channels inhibited 58.0+/-11.8%, and simultaneous inhibition of L-, P-, and Q-type channels led to blockade (88.7+/-5.6%) of the Ca2+ current. We conclude that aortic and renal preglomerular smooth muscle cells express L-, P-, and Q-type voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels in the rat and mouse....

  7. Structural mapping of the voltage-dependent sodium channel. Distance between the tetrodotoxin and Centruroides suffusus suffusus II beta-scorpion toxin receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darbon, H; Angelides, K J

    1984-05-25

    A 7- dimethylaminocoumarin -4-acetate fluorescent derivative of toxin II from the venom of the scorpion Centruroides suffusus suffusus (Css II) has been prepared to study the structural, conformational, and cellular properties of the beta-neurotoxin receptor site on the voltage-dependent sodium channel. The derivative retains high affinity for its receptor site on the synaptosomal sodium channel with a KD of 7 nM and site capacity of 1.5 pmol/mg of synaptosomal protein. The fluorescent toxin is very environmentally sensitive and the fluorescence emission upon binding indicates that the Css II receptor is largely hydrophobic. Binding of tetrodotoxin or batrachotoxin does not alter the spectroscopic properties of bound Css II, whereas toxin V from Leiurus quinquestriatus effects a 10-nm blue shift to a more hydrophobic environment. This is the first direct indication of conformational coupling between these separate neurotoxin receptor sites. The distance between the tetrodotoxin and Css II scorpion toxin receptors on the sodium channel was measured by fluorescence resonance energy transfer. Efficiencies were measured by both donor quenching and acceptor-sensitized emission. The distance between these two neurotoxin sites is about 34 A. The implications of these receptor locations together with other known molecular distances are discussed in terms of a molecular structure of the voltage-dependent sodium channel.

  8. Functional coupling between large-conductance potassium channels and Cav3.2 voltage-dependent calcium channels participates in prostate cancer cell growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian Gackière

    2013-07-01

    It is strongly suspected that potassium (K+ channels are involved in various aspects of prostate cancer development, such as cell growth. However, the molecular nature of those K+ channels implicated in prostate cancer cell proliferation and the mechanisms through which they control proliferation are still unknown. This study uses pharmacological, biophysical and molecular approaches to show that the main voltage-dependent K+ current in prostate cancer LNCaP cells is carried by large-conductance BK channels. Indeed, most of the voltage-dependent current was inhibited by inhibitors of BK channels (paxillin and iberiotoxin and by siRNA targeting BK channels. In addition, we reveal that BK channels constitute the main K+ channel family involved in setting the resting membrane potential in LNCaP cells at around −40 mV. This consequently promotes a constitutive calcium entry through T-type Cav3.2 calcium channels. We demonstrate, using single-channel recording, confocal imaging and co-immunoprecipitation approaches, that both channels form macromolecular complexes. Finally, using flow cytometry cell cycle measurements, cell survival assays and Ki67 immunofluorescent staining, we show that both BK and Cav3.2 channels participate in the proliferation of prostate cancer cells.

  9. Altered calcium homeostasis in motor neurons following AMPA receptor but not voltage-dependent calcium channels' activation in a genetic model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guatteo, Ezia; Carunchio, Irene; Pieri, Massimo; Albo, Federica; Canu, Nadia; Mercuri, Nicola B; Zona, Cristina

    2007-10-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a late-onset progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by a substantial loss of motor neurons in the spinal cord, brain stem and motor cortex. By combining electrophysiological recordings with imaging techniques, clearance/buffering capacity of cultured spinal cord motor neurons after a calcium accumulation has been analyzed in response to AMPA receptors' (AMPARs') activation and to depolarizing stimuli in a genetic mouse model of ALS (G93A). Our studies demonstrate that the amplitude of the calcium signal in response to AMPARs' or voltage-dependent calcium channels' activation is not significantly different in controls and G93A motor neurons. On the contrary, in G93A motor neurons, the [Ca(2+)](i) recovery to basal level is significantly slower compared to control neurons following AMPARs but not voltage-dependent calcium channels' activation. This difference was not observed in G93A cultured cortical neurons. This observation is the first to indicate a specific alteration of the calcium clearance linked to AMPA receptors' activation in G93A motor neurons and the involvement of AMPA receptor regulatory proteins controlling both AMPA receptor functionality and the sequence of events connected to them.

  10. Effects of in vitro and in vivo lead exposure on voltage-dependent calcium channels in central neurons of Lymnaea stagnalis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audesirk, G

    1987-01-01

    Currents through calcium channels of members of an identified cluster of neurons (B cells) in the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis were studied under voltage clamp. The normal physiological saline was modified to maximize the visibility of voltage-dependent calcium currents and minimize contamination by other currents. Barium was used as the charge carrier for the calcium channels. Depolarizing voltage steps induce an inward current, the magnitude of which varies with the barium concentration. In brains taken from animals not exposed in vivo to lead, in vitro addition of lead acetate to the recording medium (0.25 to 14 microM) inhibits the barium current by 59 +/- 14% (mean +/- s.d.), in a manner that is independent of the lead concentration. The magnitude of the residual current still varies with the barium concentration. The voltage dependence of the current appears to be unaffected by lead. In contrast to some other calcium-channel blockers, such as cobalt, the inhibition of barium currents by in vitro lead exposure is irreversible, at least in short-term experiments. Contrary to expectations based on these in vitro results, barium currents in B cells of animals exposed to 5 microM lead for 6 to 12 weeks in vivo were approximately twice as large as barium currents in B cells from unexposed controls, when both were recorded in lead-free saline. It is possible that chronic in vivo lead exposure causes an increase in the number of calcium channels in these neurons.

  11. Web Services-Enhanced Agile Modeling and Integrating Business Processes

    CERN Document Server

    Belouadha, Fatima-Zahra; Roudiès, Ounsa

    2012-01-01

    In a global business context with continuous changes, the enterprises have to enhance their operational efficiency, to react more quickly, to ensure the flexibility of their business processes, and to build new collaboration pathways with external partners. To achieve this goal, they must use e-business methods, mechanisms and techniques while capitalizing on the potential of new information and communication technologies. In this context, we propose a standards, model and Web services-based approach for modeling and integrating agile enterprise business processes. The purpose is to benefit from Web services characteristics to enhance the processes design and realize their dynamic integration. The choice of focusing on Web services is essentially justified by their broad adoption by enterprises as well as their capability to warranty interoperability between both intra and inter-enterprises systems. Thereby, we propose in this chapter a metamodel for describing business processes, and discuss their dynamic in...

  12. Carbon Nanotube Bonding Strength Enhancement Using Metal "Wicking" Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamb, James L.; Dickie, Matthew R.; Kowalczyk, Robert S.; Liao, Anna; Bronikowski, Michael J.

    2012-01-01

    Carbon nanotubes grown from a surface typically have poor bonding strength at the interface. A process has been developed for adding a metal coat to the surface of carbon nano tubes (CNTs) through a wicking process, which could lead to an enhanced bonding strength at the interface. This process involves merging CNTs with indium as a bump-bonding enhancement. Classical capillary theory would not normally allow materials that do not wet carbon or graphite to be drawn into the spacings by capillary action because the contact angle is greater than 90 degrees. However, capillary action can be induced through JPL's ability to fabricate oriented CNT bundles to desired spacings, and through the use of deposition techniques and temperature to control the size and mobility of the liquid metal streams and associated reservoirs. A reflow and plasma cleaning process has also been developed and demonstrated to remove indium oxide, and to obtain smooth coatings on the CNT bundles.

  13. Intramitochondrial accumulation of cationic Atto520-biotin proceeds via voltage-dependent slow permeation through lipid membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonenko, Yuri N; Nechaeva, Natalya L; Baksheeva, Victoria E; Rokitskaya, Tatyana I; Plotnikov, Egor Y; Kotova, Elena A; Zorov, Dmitry B

    2015-06-01

    Conjugation to penetrating cations is a general approach for intramitochondrial delivery of physiologically active compounds, supported by a high membrane potential of mitochondria having negative sign on the matrix side. By using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, we found here that Atto520-biotin, a conjugate of a fluorescent cationic rhodamine-based dye with the membrane-impermeable vitamin biotin, accumulated in energized mitochondria in contrast to biotin-rhodamine 110. The energy-dependent uptake of Atto520-biotin by mitochondria, being slower than that of the conventional mitochondrial dye tetramethyl-rhodamine ethyl ester, was enhanced by the hydrophobic anion tetraphenylborate (TPB). Atto520-biotin also exhibited accumulation in liposomes driven by membrane potential resulting from potassium ion gradient in the presence valinomycin. The induction of electrical current across planar bilayer lipid membrane by Atto520-biotin proved the ability of the compound to permeate through lipid membrane in a cationic form. Atto520-biotin stained mitochondria in a culture of L929 cells, and the staining was enhanced in the presence of TPB. Therefore, the fluorescent Atto520 moiety can serve as a vehicle for intramitochondrial delivery of hydrophilic drugs. Of importance for biotin-streptavidin technology, binding of Atto520-biotin to streptavidin was found to cause quenching of its fluorescence similar to the case of fluorescein-4-biotin.

  14. The Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel 1 (AtVDAC1 Negatively Regulates Plant Cold Responses during Germination and Seedling Development in Arabidopsis and Interacts with Calcium Sensor CBL1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhi-Yong Li

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC, a highly conserved major mitochondrial outer membrane protein, plays crucial roles in energy metabolism and metabolite transport. However, knowledge about the roles of the VDAC family in plants is limited. In this study, we investigated the expression pattern of VDAC1 in Arabidopsis and found that cold stress promoted the accumulation of VDAC1 transcripts in imbibed seeds and mature plants. Overexpression of VDAC1 reduced tolerance to cold stress in Arabidopsis. Phenotype analysis of VDAC1 T-DNA insertion mutant plants indicated that a vdac1 mutant line had faster germination kinetics under cold treatment and showed enhanced tolerance to freezing. The yeast two-hybrid system revealed that VDAC1 interacts with CBL1, a calcium sensor in plants. Like the vdac1, a cbl1 mutant also exhibited a higher seed germination rate. We conclude that both VDAC1 and CBL1 regulate cold stress responses during seed germination and plant development.

  15. Enhancement of surface processes with low energy ions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chason, E.

    1995-05-01

    Continuing trends in device fabrication towards smaller feature sizes, lower thermal budgets and advanced device structures put greater emphasis on controlling the surface structure and reactivity during processing. Since the evolution of the semiconductor surface during processing is determined by the interaction of multiple surface processes, understanding how to control and modify these processes on the atomic level would enable us to exert greater control over the resulting morphology and composition. Low energy ions represent one method for bringing controlled amounts of energy to the surface to modify surface structure and kinetics. The kinetic energy deposited by the ions can break bonds and displace atoms, creating defect populations significantly in excess of the equilibrium concentration. Consequences of these non-equilibrium conditions include the enhancement of surface kinetic processes, increased surface reactivity and formation of metastable structures and compositions. These effects can be beneficial (ion enhanced mass transport can lead to surface smoothing) or they can be detrimental (residual defects can degrade electrical properties or lead to amorphization). The net results depend on a complex balance that depends on many parameters including ion mass, energy, flux and temperature. In the following section, we review progress both in our fundamental understanding of the production of low-energy ion-induced defects and in the use of low energy ions to enhance surface morphology, stimulate low temperature growth and obtain non-equilibrium structures and compositions.

  16. Process development and intensification for enhanced production of Bacillus lipopeptides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rangarajan, Vivek; Clarke, Kim G

    2015-01-01

    The growing interest in Bacillus lipopeptides for high-value applications has driven process design, development and optimization for enhanced lipopeptide production. Traditional optimization approaches have been directed towards improving the overall titres by modification of media components and environmental parameters, almost exclusively in submerged cultures. Carbon and nitrogen sources, trace elements and oxygen availability have all been demonstrated to exhibit significant influences on lipopeptide yield, productivity and selectivity. This insight into process-linked kinetics, especially selectivity, has led to the introduction of novel process intensification and integration strategies which further promote process efficiency, and which include foam fractionation, inverse fluidization, rotating disc contacting and microfiltration with recycle. These strategies have not only transformed the production capabilities, but have also successfully integrated upstream production with downstream purification through cell retention and in situ product removal. This review analyses and critically discusses the impact of process conditions and process optimization strategies for improving lipopeptide production kinetics, specifically highlighting the emerging trend of process intensification and integration strategies and further, proposes a heuristic route to enhance lipopeptide production.

  17. Voltage dependence of cardiac excitation-contraction coupling: unitary Ca2+ current amplitude and open channel probability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altamirano, Julio; Bers, Donald M

    2007-09-14

    Excitation-contraction coupling in cardiac myocytes occurs by Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release, where L-type Ca2+ current evokes a larger sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca2+ release. The Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release amplification factor or gain (SR Ca2+ release/I(Ca)) is usually assessed by the V(m) dependence of current and Ca2+ transients. Gain rises at negative V(m), as does single channel I(Ca) (i(Ca)), which has led to the suggestion that the increases of i(Ca) amplitude enhances gain at more negative V(m). However, I(Ca) = NP(o) x i(Ca) (where NP(o) is the number of open channels), and NP(o) and i(Ca) both depend on V(m). To assess how i(Ca) and NP(o) separately influence Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release, we measured I(Ca) and junctional SR Ca2+ release in voltage-clamped rat ventricular myocytes using "Ca2+ spikes" (confocal microscopy). To vary i(Ca) alone, we changed [Ca2+](o) rapidly at constant test V(m) (0 mV) or abruptly repolarized from +120 mV to different V(m) (at constant [Ca2+](o)). To vary NP(o) alone, we altered Ca2+ channel availability by varying holding V(m) (at constant test V(m)). Reducing either i(Ca) or NP(o) alone increased excitation-contraction coupling gain. Thus, increasing i(Ca) does not increase gain at progressively negative test V(m). Such enhanced gain depends on lower NP(o) and reduced redundant Ca2+ channel openings (per junction) and a consequently smaller denominator in the gain equation. Furthermore, modest i(Ca) (at V(m) = 0 mV) may still effectively trigger SR Ca2+ release, whereas at positive V(m) (and smaller i(Ca)), high and well-synchronized channel openings are required for efficient excitation-contraction coupling. At very positive V(m), reduced i(Ca) must explain reduced SR Ca2+ release.

  18. Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel 2 of Arabidopsis thaliana (AtVDAC2 Is Involved in ABA-Mediated Early Seedling Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xufeng Li

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available The voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC is the major transport protein in the outer membrane of mitochondria and plays crucial roles in energy metabolism, apoptosis, and metabolites transport. In plants, the expression of VDACs can be affected by different stresses, including drought, salinity and pathogen defense. In this study, we investigated the expression pattern of AtVDAC2 in A. thaliana and found ABA suppressed the accumulation of AtVDAC2 transcripts. Further, phenotype analysis of this VDAC deregulated-expression transgenic Arabidopsis plants indicated that AtVDAC2 anti-sense line showed an ABA-insensitivity phenotype during the early seedling development under ABA treatment. The results suggested that AtVDAC2 might be involved in ABA signaling in A. thaliana.

  19. Reduced KCNQ4-encoded voltage-dependent potassium channel activity underlies impaired ß-adrenoceptor-mediated relaxation of renal arteries in hypertension

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chadha, Preet S; Zunke, Friederike; Zhu, Hai-Lei;

    2012-01-01

    KCNQ4-encoded voltage-dependent potassium (Kv7.4) channels are important regulators of vascular tone that are severely compromised in models of hypertension. However, there is no information as to the role of these channels in responses to endogenous vasodilators. We used a molecular knockdown...... strategy, as well as pharmacological tools, to examine the hypothesis that Kv7.4 channels contribute to ß-adrenoceptor-mediated vasodilation in the renal vasculature and underlie the vascular deficit in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Quantitative PCR and immunohistochemistry confirmed gene and protein...... spontaneously hypertensive rats, which was associated with ˜60% decrease in Kv7.4 abundance. This study provides the first evidence that Kv7 channels contribute to ß-adrenoceptor-mediated vasodilation in the renal vasculature and that abrogation of Kv7.4 channels is strongly implicated in the impaired ß...

  20. Involvement of presynaptic voltage-dependent Kv3 channel in endothelin-1-induced inhibition of noradrenaline release from rat gastric sympathetic nerves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Kumiko; Shimizu, Takahiro; Tanaka, Kenjiro; Taniuchi, Keisuke; Yokotani, Kunihiko

    2012-11-05

    We previously reported that two types of K(+) channels, the BK type Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channel coupled with phospholipase C (PLC) and the voltage-dependent K(+) channel (Kv channel), are, respectively, involved in the prostanoid TP receptor- and muscarinic M(2) receptor-mediated inhibition of noradrenaline (NA) release from rat gastric sympathetic nerves. In the present study, therefore, we examined whether these K(+) channels are involved in endothelin-1-induced inhibition of NA release, using an isolated, vascularly perfused rat stomach. The gastric sympathetic postganglionic nerves around the left gastric artery were electrically stimulated twice at 2.5 Hz for 1 min, and endothelin-1 was added during the second stimulation. Endothelin-1 (1, 2 and 10 nM) dose-dependently inhibited gastric NA release. Endothelin-1 (2 nM)-induced inhibition of NA release was neither attenuated by PLC inhibitors [U-73122 (3 μM) and ET-18-OCH(3) (3 μM)] nor by Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channel blockers [charybdotoxin (0.1 μM) (a blocker of BK type K(+) channel) and apamin (0.3 μM) (a blocker of SK type K(+) channel)]. The endothelin-1-induced inhibitory response was also not attenuated by α-dendrotoxin (0.1 μM) (a selective inhibitor of Kv1 channel), but abolished by 4-aminopyridine (20 μM) (a selectively inhibitory dose for Kv3 channel). These results suggest the involvement of a voltage-dependent Kv3 channel in the endothelin-1-induced inhibition of NA release from the gastric sympathetic nerves in rats.

  1. Heparin/heparan sulfates bind to and modulate neuronal L-type (Cav1.2) voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garau, Gianpiero; Magotti, Paola; Heine, Martin; Korotchenko, Svetlana; Lievens, Patricia Marie-Jeanne; Berezin, Vladimir; Dityatev, Alexander

    2015-12-01

    Our previous studies revealed that L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels (Cav1.2 L-VDCCs) are modulated by the neural extracellular matrix backbone, polyanionic glycan hyaluronic acid. Here we used isothermal titration calorimetry and screened a set of peptides derived from the extracellular domains of Cav1.2α1 to identify putative binding sites between the channel and hyaluronic acid or another class of polyanionic glycans, such as heparin/heparan sulfates. None of the tested peptides showed detectable interaction with hyaluronic acid, but two peptides derived from the first pore-forming domain of Cav1.2α1 subunit bound to heparin. At 25 °C the binding of the peptide P7 (MGKMHKTCYN) was at ~50 μM, and that of the peptide P8 (GHGRQCQNGTVCKPGWDGPKHG) was at ~21 μM. The Cav1.2α1 first pore forming segment that contained both peptides maintained a high affinity for heparin (~23 μM), integrating their enthalpic and entropic binding contributions. Interaction between heparin and recombinant as well as native full-length neuronal Cav1.2α1 channels was confirmed using the heparin-agarose pull down assay. Whole cell patch clamp recordings in HEK293 cells transfected with neuronal Cav1.2 channels revealed that enzymatic digestion of highly sulfated heparan sulfates with heparinase 1 affects neither voltage-dependence of channel activation nor the level of steady state inactivation, but did speed up channel inactivation. Treatment of hippocampal cultures with heparinase 1 reduced the firing rate and led to appearance of long-lasting bursts in the same manner as treatment with the inhibitor of L-VDCC diltiazem. Thus, heparan sulfate proteoglycans may bind to and regulate L-VDCC inactivation and network activity.

  2. Cyanocobalamin, vitamin B12, depresses glutamate release through inhibition of voltage-dependent Ca2+ influx in rat cerebrocortical nerve terminals (synaptosomes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hung, Kun-Long; Wang, Chia-Chuan; Huang, Chia-Yu; Wang, Su-Jane

    2009-01-14

    The effect of cyanocobalamin, vitamin B12, on glutamate release in isolated nerve terminals (synaptosomes) prepared from rat prefrontal cortex was examined. Cyanocobalamin inhibited the release of glutamate evoked by 4-aminopyridine in a concentration-dependent manner. The inhibitory action of cyanocobalamin was blocked by the vesicular transporter inhibitor bafilomycin A1, not by the glutamate transporter inhibitor L-transpyrrolidine-2,4-dicarboxylic acid or the nontransportable glutamate inhibitor DL-threo-beta-benzyloxyaspartate, indicating that this release inhibition results from a reduction of vesicular exocytosis and not from an inhibition of Ca(2+)-independent efflux via glutamate transporter. Examination of the effect of cyanocobalamin on cytosolic free Ca(2+) concentration revealed that the inhibition of glutamate release could be attributed to a reduction in voltage-dependent Ca(2+) influx. Consistent with this, the N- and P/Q-type Ca(2+) channel blocker omega-conotoxin MVIIC, largely attenuated the inhibitory effect of cyanocobalamin on 4-aminopyridine-evoked glutamate release, but the Ca(2+) release inhibitor dantrolene had no effect. Cyanocobalamin did not alter the resting synaptosomal membrane potential or 4-aminopyridine-mediated depolarization; thus, the inhibition of 4-aminopyridine-evoked Ca(2+) influx and glutamate release produced by cyanocobalamin was not due to its decreasing synaptosomal excitability. In addition, cyanocobalamin-mediated inhibition of 4-aminopyridine-evoked Ca(2+) influx and glutamate release was significantly attenuated by protein kinase C inhibitors GF109203X and Ro318220. Furthermore, 4-aminopyridine-induced phosphorylation of protein kinase C was significantly reduced by cyanocobalamin. These results suggest that cyanocobalamin effects a decrease in protein kinase C activation, which subsequently reduces the Ca(2+) entry through voltage-dependent N- and P/Q-type Ca(2+) channels to cause a decrease in evoked glutamate

  3. The agonist-specific voltage dependence of M2 muscarinic receptors modulates the deactivation of the acetylcholine-gated K(+) current (I KACh).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno-Galindo, Eloy G; Alamilla, Javier; Sanchez-Chapula, José A; Tristani-Firouzi, Martin; Navarro-Polanco, Ricardo A

    2016-07-01

    Recently, it has been shown that G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) display intrinsic voltage sensitivity. We reported that the voltage sensitivity of M2 muscarinic receptor (M2R) is also ligand specific. Here, we provide additional evidence to understand the mechanism underlying the ligand-specific voltage sensitivity of the M2R. Using ACh, pilocarpine (Pilo), and bethanechol (Beth), we evaluated the agonist-specific effects of voltage by measuring the ACh-activated K(+) current (I KACh) in feline and rabbit atrial myocytes and in HEK-293 cells expressing M2R-Kir3.1/Kir3.4. The activation of I KACh by the muscarinic agonist Beth was voltage insensitive, suggesting that the voltage-induced conformational changes in M2R do not modify its affinity for this agonist. Moreover, deactivation of the Beth-evoked I KACh was voltage insensitive. By contrast, deactivation of the ACh-induced I KACh was significantly slower at -100 mV than at +50 mV, while an opposite effect was observed when I KACh was activated by Pilo. These findings are consistent with the voltage affinity pattern observed for these three agonists. Our findings suggest that independent of how voltage disturbs the receptor binding site, the voltage dependence of the signaling pathway is ultimately determined by the agonist. These observations emphasize the pharmacological potential to regulate the M2R-parasympathetic associated cardiac function and also other cellular signaling pathways by exploiting the voltage-dependent properties of GPCRs.

  4. Adenine nucleotides and intracellular Ca2+ regulate a voltage-dependent and glucose-sensitive potassium channel in neurosecretory cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onetti, C G; Lara, J; García, E

    1996-05-01

    Effects of membrane potential, intracellular Ca2+ and adenine nucleotides on glucose-sensitive channels from X organ (XO) neurons of the crayfish were studied in excised inside-out patches. Glucose- sensitive channels were selective to K+ ions; the unitary conductance was 112 pS in symmetrical K+, and the K+ permeability (PK) was 1.3 x 10(-13) cm x s(-1). An inward rectification was observed when intracellular K+ was reduced. Using a quasi-physiological K+ gradient, a non-linear K+ current/voltage relationship was found showing an outward rectification and a slope conductance of 51 pS. The open-state probability (Po) increased with membrane depolarization as a result of an enhancement of the mean open time and a shortening of the longer period of closures. In quasi-physio- logical K+ concentrations, the channel was activated from a threshold of about -60 mV, and the activation midpoint was -2 mV. Po decreased noticeably at 50 microM internal adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP), and single-channel activity was totally abolished at 1 mM ATP. Hill analysis shows that this inhibition was the result of simultaneous binding of two ATP molecules to the channel, and the half-blocking concentration of ATP was 174 microM. Internal application of 5'-adenylylimidodiphosphate (AMP-PNP) as well as glibenclamide also decreased Po. By contrast, the application of internal ADP (0.1 to 2 mM) activated this channel. An optimal range of internal free Ca2+ ions (0.1 to 10 microM) was required for the activation of this channel. The glucose--sensitive K+ channel of XO neurons could be considered as a subtype of ATP-sensitive K+ channel, contributing substantially to macroscopic outward current.

  5. Series resistance mapping of Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} solar cells by voltage dependent electroluminescence

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Daume, Felix; Puttnins, Stefan [Solarion AG, Ostende 5, 04288 Leipzig (Germany); Institut fuer Experimentelle Physik II, Universitaet Leipzig, Linnestr. 5, 04103 Leipzig (Germany); Scheit, Christian; Rahm, Andreas [Solarion AG, Ostende 5, 04288 Leipzig (Germany); Grundmann, Marius [Institut fuer Experimentelle Physik II, Universitaet Leipzig, Linnestr. 5, 04103 Leipzig (Germany)

    2011-07-01

    Cu(In,Ga)Se{sub 2} (CIGSe) thin film solar cells deposited on flexible polyimide foil promising innovative applications and a fabrication in continuous roll-to-roll processes currently reach efficiencies up to 17.6 %. The optimization of the solar cell efficiency requires the reduction of inherent losses in the cell. In order to achieve this goal preferably spatially resolved access to parameters characterizing ohmic losses like series and shunt resistances are indispensable. We apply an interpretation method for electroluminescence (EL) images taken at different voltages which is known for solar cells made of crystalline silicon from literature to solar cells made of polycrystalline CIGSe. The theory of this method to obtain a mapping of the series resistance and the EL imaging process as well as the data interpretation ils reviewed and demonstrated on an example. Furthermore, the benefit of this method for the characterization of solar cells under accelerated aging conditions (damp heat) which is important for the estimation of the long-term stability is shown.

  6. Supporting technology for enhanced oil recovery - EOR thermal processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-03-01

    This report contains the results of efforts under the six tasks of the Eighth Amendment and Extension of Annex IV, Enhanced Oil Recovery Thermal Processes of the Venezuela/USA Agreement. The report is presented in sections and each section contains one or more reports prepared by various individuals or groups describing the results of efforts under each of the tasks. A statement of each task, taken from the agreement, is presented on the first page of each section.

  7. Musical training enhances neural processing of binaural sounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parbery-Clark, Alexandra; Strait, Dana L; Hittner, Emily; Kraus, Nina

    2013-10-16

    While hearing in noise is a complex task, even in high levels of noise humans demonstrate remarkable hearing ability. Binaural hearing, which involves the integration and analysis of incoming sounds from both ears, is an important mechanism that promotes hearing in complex listening environments. Analyzing inter-ear differences helps differentiate between sound sources--a key mechanism that facilitates hearing in noise. Even when both ears receive the same input, known as diotic hearing, speech intelligibility in noise is improved. Although musicians have better speech-in-noise perception compared with non-musicians, we do not know to what extent binaural processing contributes to this advantage. Musicians often demonstrate enhanced neural responses to sound, however, which may undergird their speech-in-noise perceptual enhancements. Here, we recorded auditory brainstem responses in young adult musicians and non-musicians to a speech stimulus for which there was no musician advantage when presented monaurally. When presented diotically, musicians demonstrated faster neural timing and greater intertrial response consistency relative to non-musicians. Furthermore, musicians' enhancements to the diotically presented stimulus correlated with speech-in-noise perception. These data provide evidence for musical training's impact on biological processes and suggest binaural processing as a possible contributor to more proficient hearing in noise.

  8. Enhancement of entanglement using cascaded four-wave mixing processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xin, Jun; Qi, Jian; Jing, Jietai

    2017-01-15

    A maximal joint quadrature squeezing of -6.8±0.4  dB is experimentally obtained by a scheme of cascaded four-wave mixing (FWM) processes, which gives strong proof about the inseparability or entanglement between output of the twin beams from the system. Here joint quadrature is the difference between the two quadratures of the twin beam output from the cascaded FWM processes. This result is enhanced by about 3.1 dB, compared with the one of the single FWM process. We also study the gain dependence of the entanglement enhancement in this cascaded system. Theoretical predictions with the considerations of the losses in the experiment are also studied, and a similar trend in the low-gain regime can be found between the experimental results and the theoretical predictions. The scheme of cascaded FWM processes, which can be used to improve or even manipulate the degree of the entanglement between the output fields from the single FWM process, may find its applications in the continuous-variable quantum communication protocols.

  9. Developing a lean measurement system to enhance process improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lewis P.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available A key ingredient to underpin process improvement is a robust, reliable, repeatable measurement system. Process improvement activity needs to be supported by accurate and precise data because effective decision making, within process improvement activity, demands the use of “hard” data. One of the oldest and most established process improvement methods is Deming’s Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA cycle which is reliant on the check phase, a measurement activity where data is being gathered and evaluated. Recent expansions of the PDCA such as the Six-Sigma Define-Measure-Analyse-Improve-Control (DMAIC methodology place significant importance upon measurement. The DMAIC cycle incorporates the regimented requirement for the inclusion of measurement system analysis (MSA into the breakthrough strategy. The call for MSA within the DMAIC cycle is to provide the improvement activity with a robust measurement system that will ensure a pertinent level of data during any validation process. The Lean methodology is heavily centred on the removal of the seven Mudas (wastes from a manufacturing process: defects, overproduction, transportation, waiting, inventory, motion and processing. The application of lean, particularly within the manufacturing industry, has led to a perception that measurement is a waste within a manufacturing process because measurement processes identify defective products. The metrologists’ pursuit for measurement excellence could be construed as a hindrance by the “cost down” demands being perpetrated from the same organisation’s lean policy. So what possible benefits does enforcing the regimes of the lean and quality philosophies upon the measurement process have and how does this ultimately enhance the process improvement activity? The key fundamental to embed with any process improvement is the removal of waste. The process improvement techniques embedded within lean and quality concepts are extremely powerful practices in the

  10. Enhanced Software for Scheduling Space-Shuttle Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barretta, Joseph A.; Johnson, Earl P.; Bierman, Rocky R.; Blanco, Juan; Boaz, Kathleen; Stotz, Lisa A.; Clark, Michael; Lebovitz, George; Lotti, Kenneth J.; Moody, James M.; Nguyen, Tony K.; Peterson, Kenneth A.; Sargent, Susan; Shaw, Karma; Stoner, Mack D.; Stowell, Deborah S.; Young, Daniel A.; Tulley, James H., Jr.

    2004-01-01

    The Ground Processing Scheduling System (GPSS) computer program is used to develop streamlined schedules for the inspection, repair, and refurbishment of space shuttles at Kennedy Space Center. A scheduling computer program is needed because space-shuttle processing is complex and it is frequently necessary to modify schedules to accommodate unanticipated events, unavailability of specialized personnel, unexpected delays, and the need to repair newly discovered defects. GPSS implements constraint-based scheduling algorithms and provides an interactive scheduling software environment. In response to inputs, GPSS can respond with schedules that are optimized in the sense that they contain minimal violations of constraints while supporting the most effective and efficient utilization of space-shuttle ground processing resources. The present version of GPSS is a product of re-engineering of a prototype version. While the prototype version proved to be valuable and versatile as a scheduling software tool during the first five years, it was characterized by design and algorithmic deficiencies that affected schedule revisions, query capability, task movement, report capability, and overall interface complexity. In addition, the lack of documentation gave rise to difficulties in maintenance and limited both enhanceability and portability. The goal of the GPSS re-engineering project was to upgrade the prototype into a flexible system that supports multiple- flow, multiple-site scheduling and that retains the strengths of the prototype while incorporating improvements in maintainability, enhanceability, and portability.

  11. Sorption enhanced reaction process (SERP) for the production of hydrogen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hufton, J.; Mayorga, S.; Gaffney, T.; Nataraj, S.; Rao, M.; Sircar, S. [Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Allentown, PA (United States)

    1998-08-01

    The novel Sorption Enhanced Reaction Process has the potential to decrease the cost of hydrogen production by steam methane reforming. Current effort for development of this technology has focused on adsorbent development, experimental process concept testing, and process development and design. A preferred CO{sub 2} adsorbent, K{sub 2}CO{sub 3} promoted hydrotalcite, satisfies all of the performance targets and it has been scaled up for process testing. A separate class of adsorbents has been identified which could potentially improve the performance of the H{sub 2}-SER process. Although this material exhibits improved CO{sub 2} adsorption capacity compared to the HTC adsorbent, its hydrothermal stability must be improved. Single-step process experiments (not cyclic) indicate that the H{sub 2}-SER reactor performance during the reaction step improves with decreasing pressure and increasing temperature and steam to methane ratio in the feed. Methane conversion in the H{sub 2}-SER reactor is higher than for a conventional catalyst-only reactor operated at similar temperature and pressure. The reactor effluent gas consists of 90+% H{sub 2}, balance CH{sub 4}, with only trace levels (< 50 ppm) of carbon oxides. A best-case process design (2.5 MMSCFD of 99.9+% H{sub 2}) based on the HTC adsorbent properties and a revised SER process cycle has been generated. Economic analysis of this design indicates the process has the potential to reduce the H{sub 2} product cost by 25--31% compared to conventional steam methane reforming.

  12. A CACNA1C variant associated with reduced voltage-dependent inactivation, increased CaV1.2 channel window current, and arrhythmogenesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica A Hennessey

    Full Text Available Mutations in CACNA1C that increase current through the CaV1.2 L-type Ca2+ channel underlie rare forms of long QT syndrome (LQTS, and Timothy syndrome (TS. We identified a variant in CACNA1C in a male child of Filipino descent with arrhythmias and extracardiac features by candidate gene sequencing and performed functional expression studies to electrophysiologically characterize the effects of the variant on CaV1.2 channels. As a baby, the subject developed seizures and displayed developmental delays at 30 months of age. At age 5 years, he displayed a QTc of 520 ms and experienced recurrent VT. Physical exam at 17 years of age was notable for microcephaly, short stature, lower extremity weakness and atrophy with hyperreflexia, spastic diplegia, multiple dental caries and episodes of rhabdomyolysis. Candidate gene sequencing identified a G>C transversion at position 5731 of CACNA1C (rs374528680 predicting a glycine>arginine substitution at residue 1911 (p.G1911R of CaV1.2. The allele frequency of this variant is 0.01 in Malays, but absent in 984 Caucasian alleles and in the 1000 genomes project. In electrophysiological analyses, the variant decreased voltage-dependent inactivation, thus causing a gain of function of CaV1.2. We also observed a negative shift of V1/2 of activation and positive shift of V1/2 of channel inactivation, resulting in an increase of the window current. Together, these suggest a gain-of-function effect on CaV1.2 and suggest increased susceptibility for arrhythmias in certain clinical settings. The p.G1911R variant was also identified in a case of sudden unexplained infant death (SUID, for which an increasing number of clinical observations have demonstrated can be associated with arrhythmogenic mutations in cardiac ion channels. In summary, the combined effects of the CACNA1C variant to diminish voltage-dependent inactivation of CaV1.2 and increase window current expand our appreciation of mechanisms by which a gain of

  13. Speech and audio processing for coding, enhancement and recognition

    CERN Document Server

    Togneri, Roberto; Narasimha, Madihally

    2015-01-01

    This book describes the basic principles underlying the generation, coding, transmission and enhancement of speech and audio signals, including advanced statistical and machine learning techniques for speech and speaker recognition with an overview of the key innovations in these areas. Key research undertaken in speech coding, speech enhancement, speech recognition, emotion recognition and speaker diarization are also presented, along with recent advances and new paradigms in these areas. ·         Offers readers a single-source reference on the significant applications of speech and audio processing to speech coding, speech enhancement and speech/speaker recognition. Enables readers involved in algorithm development and implementation issues for speech coding to understand the historical development and future challenges in speech coding research; ·         Discusses speech coding methods yielding bit-streams that are multi-rate and scalable for Voice-over-IP (VoIP) Networks; ·     �...

  14. Phased array ultrasonic processing for enhanced and affordable diagnosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dominguez, N.; Rougeron, G.; Leberre, S.; Pautel, R.

    2013-01-01

    Phased array ultrasonic reconstruction techniques are often presented as a prospect for better and enhanced diagnosis. However to date few applications of these techniques can be found in the industry, partly because of questions on sizing but also because they often require heavy acquisitions. A way forward is then to propose techniques requiring less intensive data acquisition to make them broadly affordable in practice. Several approaches ranging from full matrix capture to paintbrush acquisitions are presented in this paper in combination with associated reconstruction processing like the Total Focusing Method (TFM) and the Time Domain Topological Energy (TDTE) techniques. Emphasis is given to their relative relevancies and practical applicability on typical configurations of interest for industries. The paper also presents recent efforts made on the acceleration of processing computation times, in particular through the use of GPU architectures.

  15. Concentrative meditation enhances preattentive processing: a mismatch negativity study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasan, Narayanan; Baijal, Shruti

    2007-10-29

    The mismatch negativity (MMN) paradigm that is an indicator of preattentive processing was used to study the effects of concentrative meditation. Sudarshan Kriya Yoga meditation is a yogic exercise practiced in an ordered sequence beginning with breathing exercises, and ending with concentrative (Sahaj Samadhi) meditation. Auditory MMN waveforms were recorded at the beginning and after each of these practices for meditators, and equivalently after relaxation sessions for the nonmeditators. Overall meditators were found to have larger MMN amplitudes than nonmeditators. The meditators also exhibited significantly increased MMN amplitudes immediately after meditation suggesting transient state changes owing to meditation. The results indicate that concentrative meditation practice enhances preattentive perceptual processes, enabling better change detection in auditory sensory memory.

  16. Enhancement of activated sludge disintegration and dewaterability by Fenton process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heng, G. C.; Isa, M. H.

    2016-06-01

    Municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plants produce large amounts of sludge. This excess sludge is an inevitable drawback inherent to the activated sludge process. In this study, the waste activated sludge was obtained from the campus wastewater treatment plant at Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (UTP), Malaysia. Fenton pretreatment was optimized by using the response surface methodology (RSM) to study the effects of three operating conditions including the dosage of H2O2 (g H2O2/kg TS), the molar ratio of H2O2/Fe2+ and reaction time. The optimum operating variables to achieve MLVSS removal 65%, CST reduction 28%, sCOD 11000 mg/L and EPS 500 mg/L were: 1000 g H2O2/kg TS, H2O2/Fe2+ molar ratio 70 and reaction time 45 min. Fenton process was proved to be able to enhance the sludge disintegration and dewaterability.

  17. Processing Digital Imagery to Enhance Perceptions of Realism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodell, Glenn A.; Jobson, Daniel J.; Rahman, Zia-ur

    2003-01-01

    Multi-scale retinex with color restoration (MSRCR) is a method of processing digital image data based on Edwin Land s retinex (retina + cortex) theory of human color vision. An outgrowth of basic scientific research and its application to NASA s remote-sensing mission, MSRCR is embodied in a general-purpose algorithm that greatly improves the perception of visual realism and the quantity and quality of perceived information in a digitized image. In addition, the MSRCR algorithm includes provisions for automatic corrections to accelerate and facilitate what could otherwise be a tedious image-editing process. The MSRCR algorithm has been, and is expected to continue to be, the basis for development of commercial image-enhancement software designed to extend and refine its capabilities for diverse applications.

  18. Holistic face training enhances face processing in developmental prosopagnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeGutis, Joseph; Cohan, Sarah; Nakayama, Ken

    2014-06-01

    Prosopagnosia has largely been regarded as an untreatable disorder. However, recent case studies using cognitive training have shown that it is possible to enhance face recognition abilities in individuals with developmental prosopagnosia. Our goal was to determine if this approach could be effective in a larger population of developmental prosopagnosics. We trained 24 developmental prosopagnosics using a 3-week online face-training program targeting holistic face processing. Twelve subjects with developmental prosopagnosia were assessed before and after training, and the other 12 were assessed before and after a waiting period, they then performed the training, and were then assessed again. The assessments included measures of front-view face discrimination, face discrimination with view-point changes, measures of holistic face processing, and a 5-day diary to quantify potential real-world improvements. Compared with the waiting period, developmental prosopagnosics showed moderate but significant overall training-related improvements on measures of front-view face discrimination. Those who reached the more difficult levels of training ('better' trainees) showed the strongest improvements in front-view face discrimination and showed significantly increased holistic face processing to the point of being similar to that of unimpaired control subjects. Despite challenges in characterizing developmental prosopagnosics' everyday face recognition and potential biases in self-report, results also showed modest but consistent self-reported diary improvements. In summary, we demonstrate that by using cognitive training that targets holistic processing, it is possible to enhance face perception across a group of developmental prosopagnosics and further suggest that those who improved the most on the training task received the greatest benefits.

  19. Correlation between Barrier Width, Barrier Height, and DC Bias Voltage Dependences on the Magnetoresistance Ratio in Ir-Mn Exchange Biased Single and Double Tunnel Junctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Yoshiaki; Amano, Minoru; Nakajima, Kentaro; Takahashi, Shigeki; Sagoi, Masayuki; Inomata, Koichiro

    2000-10-01

    Dual spin-valve-type double tunnel junctions (DTJs) of Ir-Mn/CoFe/AlOx/Co90Fe10/AlOx/CoFe/Ir-Mn and spin-valve-type single tunnel junctions (STJs) of Ir-Mn/CoFe/AlOx/CoFe/Ni-Fe were fabricated using an ultrahigh vacuum sputtering system, conventional photolithography and ion-beam milling. The STJs could be fabricated with various barrier heights by changing the oxidization conditions during deposition and changing the annealing temperature after deposition, while the AlOx layer thickness remained unchanged. There was a correlation between barrier width, height estimated using Simmons’ expressions, and dc bias voltage dependence on the MR ratio. The VB dependence on the tunneling magnetoresistance (TMR) ratio was mainly related to the barrier width, and the decrease in the TMR ratio with increasing bias voltage is well explained, taking into account the spin-independent two-step tunneling via defect states in the barrier, as a main mechanism, at room temperature. Under optimized oxidization and annealing conditions, the maximum TMR ratio at a low bias voltage, and the dc bias voltage value at which the TMR ratio decreases in value by half (V1/2) were 42.4% and 952 mV in DTJs, and 49.0% and 425 mV in STJs, respectively.

  20. hERG S4-S5 linker acts as a voltage-dependent ligand that binds to the activation gate and locks it in a closed state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malak, Olfat A; Es-Salah-Lamoureux, Zeineb; Loussouarn, Gildas

    2017-12-01

    Delayed-rectifier potassium channels (hERG and KCNQ1) play a major role in cardiac repolarization. These channels are formed by a tetrameric pore (S5-S6) surrounded by four voltage sensor domains (S1-S4). Coupling between voltage sensor domains and the pore activation gate is critical for channel voltage-dependence. However, molecular mechanisms remain elusive. Herein, we demonstrate that covalently binding, through a disulfide bridge, a peptide mimicking the S4-S5 linker (S4-S5L) to the channel S6 C-terminus (S6T) completely inhibits hERG. This shows that channel S4-S5L is sufficient to stabilize the pore activation gate in its closed state. Conversely, covalently binding a peptide mimicking S6T to the channel S4-S5L prevents its inhibiting effect and renders the channel almost completely voltage-independent. This shows that the channel S4-S5L is necessary to stabilize the activation gate in its closed state. Altogether, our results provide chemical evidence that S4-S5L acts as a voltage-controlled ligand that binds S6T to lock the channel in a closed state, elucidating the coupling between voltage sensors and the gate in delayed rectifier potassium channels and potentially other voltage-gated channels.

  1. Ca2+ channel inhibitor NNC 55-0396 inhibits voltage-dependent K+ channels in rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Son, Youn Kyoung; Hong, Da Hye; Li, Hongliang; Kim, Dae-Joong; Na, Sung Hun; Park, Hongzoo; Jung, Won-Kyo; Choi, Il-Whan; Park, Won Sun

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrated the inhibitory effect of NNC 55-0396, a T-type Ca(2+) channel inhibitor, on voltage-dependent K(+) (K(V)) channels in freshly isolated rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells. NNC 55-0396 decreased the amplitude of K(V) currents in a concentration-dependent manner, with an IC(50) of 0.080 μM and a Hill coefficient of 0.76.NNC 55-0396 did not affect steady-state activation and inactivation curves, indicating that the compound does not affect the voltage sensitivity of K(V) channel gating. Both the K(V) currents and the inhibitory effect of NNC 55-0396 on K(V) channels were not altered by depletion of extracellular Ca(2+) or intracellular ATP, suggesting that the inhibitory effect of NNC 55-0396 is independent of Ca(2+)-channel activity and phosphorylation-dependent signaling cascades. From these results, we concluded that NNC 55-0396 dosedependently inhibits K(V) currents, independently of Ca(2+)-channel activity and intracellular signaling cascades.

  2. Flow- and voltage-dependent blocking effect of ethosuximide on the inward rectifier K⁺ (Kir2.1) channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Chiung-Wei; Kuo, Chung-Chin

    2015-08-01

    Absence seizures are manifestations of abnormal thalamocortical oscillations characterized by spike-and-wave complexes in EEG. Ethosuximide (ETX) is one of the principal medications against absence seizures. We investigate the effect of ETX on the Kir2.1 channel, a prototypical inward rectifier K(+) channel possibly playing an important role in the setting of neuronal membrane potential. We demonstrate that the outward currents of Kir2.1 channels are significantly inhibited by intracellular ETX. We further show that the movement of neutral molecule ETX in the Kir2.1 channel is accompanied by ∼1.2 K(+), giving rise to the vivid voltage dependence of ETX unbinding rate. Moreover, the apparent affinity (K d ) of ETX in the channels are decreased by single-point mutations involving M183, E224, and S165, and especially by double mutations involving T141/S165, which always also disrupt the flux-coupling feature of ETX block. Molecular dynamics simulation demonstrates narrowing of the pore at ∼D172 by binding of ETX to S165 or T141. ETX block of the Kir2.1 channels may cause a modest but critical depolarization of the relevant neurons, decreasing available T-type Ca(2+) channels and consequently lessening pathological thalamocortical burst discharges.

  3. Differential rescue of spatial memory deficits in aged rats by L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel and ryanodine receptor antagonism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopp, S C; D'Angelo, H M; Royer, S E; Kaercher, R M; Adzovic, L; Wenk, G L

    2014-11-01

    Age-associated memory impairments may result as a consequence of neuroinflammatory induction of intracellular calcium (Ca(+2)) dysregulation. Altered L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel (L-VDCC) and ryanodine receptor (RyR) activity may underlie age-associated learning and memory impairments. Various neuroinflammatory markers are associated with increased activity of both L-VDCCs and RyRs, and increased neuroinflammation is associated with normal aging. In vitro, pharmacological blockade of L-VDCCs and RyRs has been shown to be anti-inflammatory. Here, we examined whether pharmacological blockade of L-VDCCs or RyRs with the drugs nimodipine and dantrolene, respectively, could improve spatial memory and reduce age-associated increases in microglia activation. Dantrolene and nimodipine differentially attenuated age-associated spatial memory deficits but were not anti-inflammatory in vivo. Furthermore, RyR gene expression was inversely correlated with spatial memory, highlighting the central role of Ca(+2) dysregulation in age-associated memory deficits.

  4. α-Synuclein Shows High Affinity Interaction with Voltage-dependent Anion Channel, Suggesting Mechanisms of Mitochondrial Regulation and Toxicity in Parkinson Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rostovtseva, Tatiana K; Gurnev, Philip A; Protchenko, Olga; Hoogerheide, David P; Yap, Thai Leong; Philpott, Caroline C; Lee, Jennifer C; Bezrukov, Sergey M

    2015-07-24

    Participation of the small, intrinsically disordered protein α-synuclein (α-syn) in Parkinson disease (PD) pathogenesis has been well documented. Although recent research demonstrates the involvement of α-syn in mitochondrial dysfunction in neurodegeneration and suggests direct interaction of α-syn with mitochondria, the molecular mechanism(s) of α-syn toxicity and its effect on neuronal mitochondria remain vague. Here we report that at nanomolar concentrations, α-syn reversibly blocks the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), the major channel of the mitochondrial outer membrane that controls most of the metabolite fluxes in and out of the mitochondria. Detailed analysis of the blockage kinetics of VDAC reconstituted into planar lipid membranes suggests that α-syn is able to translocate through the channel and thus target complexes of the mitochondrial respiratory chain in the inner mitochondrial membrane. Supporting our in vitro experiments, a yeast model of PD shows that α-syn toxicity in yeast depends on VDAC. The functional interactions between VDAC and α-syn, revealed by the present study, point toward the long sought after physiological and pathophysiological roles for monomeric α-syn in PD and in other α-synucleinopathies.

  5. Experimental characterization of enhanced SNCR process with carbonaceous gas additives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Ting; Duan, Yufeng; Yang, Zhizhong; Li, Yuan; Wang, Linwei; Zhu, Chun; Zhou, Qiang; Zhang, Jun; She, Min; Liu, Meng

    2017-06-01

    Carbonaceous gases such as CO and alkanes are commonly used as additives to enhance the selective non-catalytic reduction (SNCR) performance due to their high reducibility. This study compared the effect of CO and CH4 on NO reduction in a tubular reactor with simulated flue gas. The enhancement of C3H8 on SNCR process was tested at extremely low temperature, i.e. 650 °C. Experimental results suggested that reactions between NH3 and SO2 were favored at low temperatures and the competition for NH3 between SO2 and NO was influenced by gas additives. A maximum downward shift of 25 °C and 100 °C in temperature window for 50% NO reduction efficiency was obtained with the addition of CO and CH4, respectively. Considerable CO emission was observed with addition of CH4. The addition of CH4 contributed to the formation of a self-accelerating reaction route within NO/O2/NH3 SNCR reaction system. NO2 produced from NO accelerates the oxidation of CH4 to CO, while the oxidation of CH4 returns to enhance the NO reduction globally. Optimal NO reduction of 44% was achieved with addition of C3H8 at 650 °C. Substantial portion of C3H8 was partially oxidized to CO and the remaining was converted into C2H4 and C3H6 during the SNCR process. Oxidative dehydrogenation of C3H8 was involved. High reactivity of C3H6 and C2H4 favored the further oxidation and cracking to produce CO. These differences in oxidation behavior significantly influence the promotion capacities of CO, CH4 and C3H8 for NO reduction. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Lean process management implementation through enhanced problem solving capabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perumal Puvanasvaran

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available All Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM organizations in Aerospace, Automotive and Electronics industries had to upgrade their functions. These organizations including suppliers and solutions providers are duty bound to improve their functions through strategic initiatives. One such initiative is Lean Process Management. Lean Process Management has proven to aid organizations in developing manufacturing and administrative management solutions and make the organization a leaner at the same time a ‘fitter’ one, achieving World Class standards in terms of production, quality, marketing, etc, etc. The issue or problem is, although a number of authors, experts, researchers have discussed the lean process management as part organization centric issues, they failed to provide an effective lean process management system. Besides the need to formulate an effective lean process as suggested by some authors, another important reason suggested is the employee’s development aspect regarding how to unlock the infinite potential of their workforce. This employee’s development is basically the problem solving capabilities of the employees while implementing the Lean through clear cutting protocols or processes of Lean Process Management. The employees need to be developed and equipped to contribute optimally to the process. Because of this scenario, the main objective of this study is to develop an employees development system which the author has acronym or trademark it as People Development System (PDS to enhance problem solving capability among its employees while implementing the lean process management there. Although, the PDS can be implemented throughout the organization, if it is implemented in a particular department in an organization, it will be feasible to study and analyze its effectiveness in-depth. So, this study documents and analyzes the implementation of Lean process in the Kitting Department of the aerospace company, ABC Company

  7. Enhanced cumulative sum charts for monitoring process dispersion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abujiya, Mu'azu Ramat; Riaz, Muhammad; Lee, Muhammad Hisyam

    2015-01-01

    The cumulative sum (CUSUM) control chart is widely used in industry for the detection of small and moderate shifts in process location and dispersion. For efficient monitoring of process variability, we present several CUSUM control charts for monitoring changes in standard deviation of a normal process. The newly developed control charts based on well-structured sampling techniques - extreme ranked set sampling, extreme double ranked set sampling and double extreme ranked set sampling, have significantly enhanced CUSUM chart ability to detect a wide range of shifts in process variability. The relative performances of the proposed CUSUM scale charts are evaluated in terms of the average run length (ARL) and standard deviation of run length, for point shift in variability. Moreover, for overall performance, we implore the use of the average ratio ARL and average extra quadratic loss. A comparison of the proposed CUSUM control charts with the classical CUSUM R chart, the classical CUSUM S chart, the fast initial response (FIR) CUSUM R chart, the FIR CUSUM S chart, the ranked set sampling (RSS) based CUSUM R chart and the RSS based CUSUM S chart, among others, are presented. An illustrative example using real dataset is given to demonstrate the practicability of the application of the proposed schemes.

  8. Biodegradable and radically polymerized elastomers with enhanced processing capabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ifkovits, Jamie L; Padera, Robert F; Burdick, Jason A

    2008-09-01

    The development of biodegradable materials with elastomeric properties is beneficial for a variety of applications, including for use in the engineering of soft tissues. Although others have developed biodegradable elastomers, they are restricted by their processing at high temperatures and under vacuum, which limits their fabrication into complex scaffolds. To overcome this, we have modified precursors to a tough biodegradable elastomer, poly(glycerol sebacate) (PGS) with acrylates to impart control over the crosslinking process and allow for more processing options. The acrylated-PGS (Acr-PGS) macromers are capable of crosslinking through free radical initiation mechanisms (e.g., redox and photo-initiated polymerizations). Alterations in the molecular weight and % acrylation of the Acr-PGS led to changes in formed network mechanical properties. In general, Young's modulus increased with % acrylation and the % strain at break increased with molecular weight when the % acrylation was held constant. Based on the mechanical properties, one macromer was further investigated for in vitro and in vivo degradation and biocompatibility. A mild to moderate inflammatory response typical of implantable biodegradable polymers was observed, even when formed as an injectable system with redox initiation. Moreover, fibrous scaffolds of Acr-PGS and a carrier polymer, poly(ethylene oxide), were prepared via an electrospinning and photopolymerization technique and the fiber morphology was dependent on the ratio of these components. This system provides biodegradable polymers with tunable properties and enhanced processing capabilities towards the advancement of approaches in engineering soft tissues.

  9. Collaborative business processes for enhancing partnerships among software services providers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heil Cancian, Maiara; Rabelo, Ricardo; Gresse von Wangenheim, Christiane

    2015-08-01

    Software services have represented a powerful view to support the realisation of the service-oriented architecture (SOA) paradigm. Using open standards and facilitating systems projects, they have increasingly been used as a corporate architectural approach to create interoperable services-based software solutions that can more easily be reused and shared across disparate applications. In the context of software companies, most of them are small firms having enormous difficulties to keep competitive. One strategy to enhance their sustainability is to enlarge partnerships among them at a more valuable level by jointly offering (web) services-based solutions. However, their culture of collaboration is low, and partnerships are usually done with the same companies and sporadically. This article presents an approach to support a more intense collaboration among software companies to attend business opportunities in a more agile way, joining capacities and capabilities which they would not have if they worked alone. This requires, however, some preparedness. From the perspective of business processes, they should understand how to carry out a collaboration more properly. This is essentially what this article is about. It presents a comprehensive list of collaborative business processes and base practices that can also act as a guide for service providers' managers to implement and manage the collaboration along its lifecycle. Processes have been validated and results are discussed.

  10. Kinesiological Development: Interpretation of a Process to Enhance Body Movement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marlen Rojas Rojas

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available This article makes a review about the process offunctional movement production along first yearRecibido: diciembre 15, 2005.Aceptado: enero 10, 2006.* Fisioterapeuta. Especialista en Neurodesarrollo, AsociaciónNorteamericana de Neurodesarrollo. Especialista enDocencia Universitaria, Universidad del Rosario. Docentedel programa de Fisioterapia de la Universidad del Rosario.E-mail: marrojas@urosario.edu.coDesarrollo kinesiológico: la interpretaciónde un proceso para facilitar el movimientocorporal humanoKinesiological Development: Interpretation of a Process to Enhance BodyMovementMarlen Rojas Rojas*of life, within the framework of kinesiology,where trunk is considered stabilizer and mainaxis in motor execution of extremities. Thepresent review facilitates understanding of basicmotor elements needed to develop a more complexand functional activity, which strengthenprofessional skills to observe, evaluate and focusits action in managing persons with motor functionaldisability.This information result from a literature review relatesto normal movement development of humanbody segments and direct observance of the normaland abnormal process on several childrenfor more than 12 years of professional experience.In general, this review stands out the relationshipbetween activities of each corporal segmentwith others rather than showing isolated partsand, in the same way; it remarks production ofsimultaneous mechanics events which havedifferent functional purposes.

  11. Abundance analysis of s-process enhanced barium stars

    CERN Document Server

    Mahanta, Upakul; Goswami, Aruna; Duorah, Kalpana

    2016-01-01

    Detailed chemical composition studies of stars with enhanced abundances of neutron-capture elements can provide observational constraints for neutron-capture nucleosynthesis studies and clues for understanding their contribution to the Galactic chemical enrichment. We present abundance results from high-resolution spectral analyses of a sample of four chemically peculiar stars characterized by s-process enhancement. High-Resolution spectra (R ~ 42000) of these objects spanning a wavelength range from 4000 to 6800 A, are taken from the ELODIE archive. We have estimated the stellar atmospheric parameters, the effective temperature T_eff, the surface gravity log g, and metallicity [Fe/H] from local thermodynamic equilibrium analysis using model atmospheres. We report estimates of elemental abundances for several neutron-capture elements, Sr, Y, Zr, Ba, La, Ce, Pr, Nd, Sm, Eu and Dy. While HD 49641 and HD 58368 show [Ba/Fe] > 1.16 the other two objects HD 119650 and HD 191010 are found to be mild barium stars wit...

  12. Bimodal audio-visual training enhances auditory adaptation process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawase, Tetsuaki; Sakamoto, Shuichi; Hori, Yoko; Maki, Atsuko; Suzuki, Yôiti; Kobayashi, Toshimitsu

    2009-09-23

    Effects of auditory training with bimodal audio-visual stimuli on monomodal aural speech intelligibility were examined in individuals with normal hearing using highly degraded noise-vocoded speech sound. Visual cue simultaneously presented with auditory stimuli during the training session significantly improved auditory speech intelligibility not only for words used in the training session, but also untrained words, when compared with the auditory training using only auditory stimuli. Visual information is generally considered to complement insufficient speech information conveyed by the auditory system during audio-visual speech perception. However, the present results showed another beneficial effect of audio-visual training that the visual cue enhances the auditory adaptation process to the degraded new speech sound, which is different from those given during bimodal training.

  13. Enhancement of Stainless Steel's Mechanical Properties via Carburizing Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, S.; Alias, S. K.; Abdullah, B.; Hafiz Mohd Bakri, Mohd.; Hafizuddin Jumadin, Muhammad; Mat Shah, Muhammad Amir

    2016-11-01

    Carburizing process is a method to disperse carbon into the steel surface in order to enhance its mechanical properties such as hardness and wear resistance. This paper study investigates the effect of carburizing temperature to the carbon dispersion layer in stainless steel. The standard AISI 304 stainless steel was carburized in two different temperatures which were 900°C and 950°C. The effect of carbon dispersion layers were observed and the results indicated that the increasing value of the average dispersion layer from 1.30 mm to 2.74 mm thickness was found to be related to increment of carburizing holding temperature . The increment of carbon thickness layer also resulted in improvement of hardness and tensile strength of carburized stainless steel.

  14. New magnetic-enhanced adsorption process for wastewater treatment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cotten, G.B.; Navratil, J.D. [Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Lab., Idaho Falls, ID (United States); Sebesta, F. [Czech Tech Univ. (Czech Republic)

    1999-09-01

    Radioactive and nonradioactive metal ion and particulate species in aqueous solutions present a formidable treatment problem for the nuclear and commercial industries. An economical and highly effective system for the treatment of wastewater containing these metal species is presented that uses a new magnetic enhanced adsorption technique. The process employs low-cost magnetite (FeO{center_dot}Fe{sub 2}O{sub 3}) supported on various organic and inorganic support media, and an external magnetic field to couple the inherent sorption properties of the magnetite with a high gradient magnetic separation technique. This combination of sorption techniques offers several advantages over current filtration and ion exchange systems and removes a variety of heavy metals and radioactive species. Filtration systems do not remove ionic species, and ion exchange systems can be plugged by particulate matter, which may limit the amount of exchange sites able to be accessed.

  15. Sorption enhanced reaction process (SERP) for production of hydrogen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sircar, S.; Anand, M.; Carvill, B. [Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Allentown, PA (United States)] [and others

    1995-09-01

    Sorption Enhanced Reaction (SER) is a novel process that is being developed for the production of lower cost hydrogen by steam-methane reforming (SMR). In this process, the reaction of methane with steam is carried out in the presence of an admixture of a catalyst and a selective adsorbent for carbon dioxide. The consequences of SER are: (1) reformation reaction at a significantly lower temperature (300-500{degrees}C) than conventional SMR (800-1100{degrees}C), while achieving the same conversion of methane to hydrogen, (2) the product hydrogen is obtained at reactor pressure (200-400 psig) and at 99+% purity directly from the reactor (compared to only 70-75% H{sub 2} from conventional SMR reactor), (3) downstream hydrogen purification step is either eliminated or significantly reduced in size. The early focus of the program will be on the identification of an adsorbent/chemisorbent for CO{sub 2} and on the demonstration of the SER concept for SMR in our state-of-the-art bench scale process. In the latter stages, a pilot plant will be built to scale-up the technology and to develop engineering data. The program has just been initiated and no significant results for SMR will be reported. However, results demonstrating the basic principles and process schemes of SER technology will be presented for reverse water gas shift reaction as the model reaction. If successful, this technology will be commercialized by Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (APCI) and used in its existing hydrogen business. APCI is the world leader in merchant hydrogen production for a wide range of industrial applications.

  16. Frequency and voltage dependence dielectric properties, ac electrical conductivity and electric modulus profiles in Al/Co{sub 3}O{sub 4}-PVA/p-Si structures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bilkan, Çiğdem, E-mail: cigdembilkan@gmail.com [Department of Physics, Faculty of Sciences, The University of Çankırı Karatekin, 18100 Çankırı (Turkey); Azizian-Kalandaragh, Yashar [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, The University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Ardabil (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Altındal, Şemsettin [Department of Physics, Faculty of Sciences, The University of Gazi, 06500 Ankara (Turkey); Shokrani-Havigh, Roya [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, The University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Ardabil (Iran, Islamic Republic of)

    2016-11-01

    In this research a simple microwave-assisted method have been used for preparation of cobalt oxide nanostructures. The as-prepared sample has been investigated by UV–vis spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM). On the other hand, frequency and voltage dependence of both the real and imaginary parts of dielectric constants (ε′, ε″) and electric modulus (M′ and M″), loss tangent (tanδ), and ac electrical conductivity (σ{sub ac}) values of Al/Co{sub 3}O{sub 4}-PVA/p-Si structures were obtained in the wide range of frequency and voltage using capacitance (C) and conductance (G/ω) data at room temperature. The values of ε′, ε″ and tanδ were found to decrease with increasing frequency almost for each applied bias voltage, but the changes in these parameters become more effective in the depletion region at low frequencies due to the charges at surface states and their relaxation time and polarization effect. While the value of σ is almost constant at low frequency, increases almost as exponentially at high frequency which are corresponding to σ{sub dc} and σ{sub ac}, respectively. The M′ and M″ have low values at low frequencies region and then an increase with frequency due to short-range mobility of charge carriers. While the value of M′ increase with increasing frequency, the value of M″ shows two peak and the peaks positions shifts to higher frequency with increasing applied voltage due to the decrease of the polarization and N{sub ss} effects with increasing frequency.

  17. Alterations of voltage-dependent calcium channel currents in basilar artery smooth muscle cells at early stage of subarachnoid hemorrhage in a rabbit model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xianqing Shi

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: To investigate the changes in the currents of voltage-dependent calcium channels (VDCCs in smooth muscle cells of basilar artery in a rabbit model of subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH. METHODS: New Zealand white rabbits were randomly divided into five groups: sham (C, normal (N, 24 hours (S1, 48 hours (S2 and 72 hours (S3 after SAH. Non-heparinized autologous arterial blood (1 ml/kg was injected into the cisterna magna to create SAH after intravenous anesthesia, and 1 ml/kg of saline was injected into cisterna magna in the sham group. Rabbits in group N received no injections. Basilar artery in S1, S2, S3 group were isolated at 24, 48, 72 hours after SAH. Basilar artery in group C was isolated at 72 hours after physiological saline injection. Basilar artery smooth muscle cells were isolated for all groups. Whole-cell patch-clamp technique was utilized to record cell membrane capacitance and VDCCs currents. The VDCCs antagonist nifedipine was added to the bath solution to block the Ca(++ channels currents. RESULTS: There were no significant differences in the number of cells isolated, the cell size and membrane capacitance among all the five groups. VDCC currents in the S1-S3 groups had higher amplitudes than those in control and sham groups. The significant change of current amplitude was observed at 72 hours after SAH, which was higher than those of 24 and 48 hours. The VDCCs were shown to expression in human artery smooth muscle cells. CONCLUSIONS: The changes of activation characteristics and voltage-current relationship at 72 hours after SAH might be an important event which leads to a series of molecular events in the microenvironment of the basilar artery smooth muscle cells. This may be the key time point for potential therapeutic intervention against subarachnoid hemorrhage.

  18. A conserved threonine in the S1-S2 loop of KV7.2 and K V7.3 channels regulates voltage-dependent activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Füll, Yvonne; Seebohm, Guiscard; Lerche, Holger; Maljevic, Snezana

    2013-06-01

    The voltage-gated potassium channels KV7.2 and KV7.3 (KCNQ2/3 genes) play an important role in regulating neuronal excitability. More than 50 KCNQ2/3 mutations have been identified to cause an inherited form of epilepsy in newborns. For two of those (E119G and S122L) found in the S1-S2 region of KV7.2, we previously showed a decreased channel availability mainly at action potential subthreshold voltages caused by a slight depolarizing shift of the activation curve. Interestingly, recent studies revealed that a threonine residue within the S1-S2 loop, highly conserved among different classes of KV channels, is crucial for both their function and surface expression. To investigate the functional role of the homologous threonine residues in KV7.2 (T114) and KV7.3 (T144) channels, we replaced them with alanine and examined the electrophysiological properties using heterologous expression in CHO cells and whole cell patch clamping. Channels comprising mutant subunits yielded decreased potassium currents with slowed activation and accelerated deactivation kinetics. However, the most striking effect was a depolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of activation reaching +30 mV upon co-expression of both mutant subunits. Potential interactions of T114 within the channel were analyzed by creating a 3D homology model of KV7.2 in an open state suggesting that this residue plays a central role in the formation of a stable interface between the S1-S2 and the S5 segment helices. This could be the explanation why substitution of the conserved threonine in KV7.2 and KV7.3 channels destabilizes the open and favors the closed state of these channels.

  19. 线粒体电压依赖性阴离子通道与心血管疾病%Voltage-dependent Anion Channel and Cardiovascular Diseases

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    夏晶

    2013-01-01

    电压依赖性阴离子通道(VDAC)是位于线粒体外膜的通道蛋白,是线粒体与细胞质之间转运ATP以及其他代谢产物的主要通道,在线粒体代谢和细胞生长中发挥重要调控作用.近期研究发现,在心肌缺血再灌、糖尿病、心衰、高血压和动脉粥样硬化时,VDAC表达明显增加,引起细胞内钙离子循环紊乱、氧化应激,进而导致细胞凋亡,已成为心血管疾病研究的新热点.本文就VDAC的分子功能,调控及其在心血管疾病中的作用和相关机制进行综述.%The voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC),a mitochondrial membrane channel protein located in the outer of mitochondrial membrane,is the main pathway between mitochondria and cytoplasm exchanging ADP,ATP,and other metabolites,and plays an important role in mitochondrial metabolism and cell growth.A growing evidence showed that VDAC was increased in cardiovascular diseases including myocardial ischemia and reperfusion,diabetes,heart failure,hypertension and atherosclerosis.The abnormal state of VDAC will result in cell death by inducing calcium cycling dysfunction and oxidative stress.And VDAC has become a hot topic in the field of cardiovascular diseases research.In this article,we will introduce the molecular function and regulation of VDAC and its role in cardiovascular diseases.

  20. IgG anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibody inhibits the voltage-dependent calcium channel currents in PC12 pheochromocytoma cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakatani, Yoshihiko; Nagaoka, Takumi; Hotta, Sayako; Utsunomiya, Iku; Yoshino, Hiide; Miyatake, Tadashi; Hoshi, Keiko; Taguchi, Kyoji

    2007-03-01

    We investigated the effects of IgG anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibodies, produced by immunizing rabbits with GalNAc-GD1a, on the voltage-dependent calcium channel (VDCCs) currents in nerve growth factor (NGF)-differentiated PC12 pheochromocytoma cells. VDCCs currents in NGF-differentiated PC12 cells were recorded using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique. Immunized rabbit serum that had a high titer of anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibodies inhibited the VDCCs currents in the NGF-differentiated PC12 cells (36.0+/-9.6% reduction). The inhibitory effect of this serum was reversed to some degree within 3-4 min by washing with bath solution. Similarly, application of purified IgG from rabbit serum immunized with GalNAc-GD1a significantly inhibited the VDCCs currents in PC12 cells (30.6+/-2.5% reduction), and this inhibition was recovered by washing with bath solution. Furthermore, the inhibitory effect was also observed in the GalNAc-GD1a affinity column binding fraction (reduction of 31.1+/-9.85%), while the GalNAc-GD1a affinity column pass-through fraction attenuated the inhibitory effect on VDCCs currents. Normal rabbit serum and normal rabbit IgG did not affect the VDCCs currents in the PC12 cells. In an immunocytochemical study using fluorescence staining, the PC12 cells were stained using GalNAc-GD1a binding fraction. These results indicate that anti-GalNAc-GD1a antibodies inhibit the VDCCs currents in NGF-differentiated PC12 cells.

  1. Reduced KCNQ4-encoded voltage-dependent potassium channel activity underlies impaired β-adrenoceptor-mediated relaxation of renal arteries in hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chadha, Preet S; Zunke, Friederike; Zhu, Hai-Lei; Davis, Alison J; Jepps, Thomas A; Olesen, Søren P; Cole, William C; Moffatt, James D; Greenwood, Iain A

    2012-04-01

    KCNQ4-encoded voltage-dependent potassium (Kv7.4) channels are important regulators of vascular tone that are severely compromised in models of hypertension. However, there is no information as to the role of these channels in responses to endogenous vasodilators. We used a molecular knockdown strategy, as well as pharmacological tools, to examine the hypothesis that Kv7.4 channels contribute to β-adrenoceptor-mediated vasodilation in the renal vasculature and underlie the vascular deficit in spontaneously hypertensive rats. Quantitative PCR and immunohistochemistry confirmed gene and protein expression of KCNQ1, KCNQ3, KCNQ4, KCNQ5, and Kv7.1, Kv7.4, and Kv7.5 in rat renal artery. Isoproterenol produced concentration-dependent relaxation of precontracted renal arteries and increased Kv7 channel currents in isolated smooth muscle cells. Application of the Kv7 blocker linopirdine attenuated isoproterenol-induced relaxation and current. Isoproterenol-induced relaxations were also reduced in arteries incubated with small interference RNAs targeted to KCNQ4 that produced a ≈60% decrease in Kv7.4 protein level. Relaxation to isoproterenol and the Kv7 activator S-1 were abolished in arteries from spontaneously hypertensive rats, which was associated with ≈60% decrease in Kv7.4 abundance. This study provides the first evidence that Kv7 channels contribute to β-adrenoceptor-mediated vasodilation in the renal vasculature and that abrogation of Kv7.4 channels is strongly implicated in the impaired β-adrenoceptor pathway in spontaneously hypertensive rats. These findings may provide a novel pathogenic link between arterial dysfunction and hypertension.

  2. Voltage-dependent gating of hyperpolarization-activated, cyclic nucleotide-gated pacemaker channels: molecular coupling between the S4-S5 and C-linkers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Decher, Niels; Chen, Jun; Sanguinetti, Michael C

    2004-04-02

    Hyperpolarization-activated, cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels have a transmembrane topology that is highly similar to voltage-gated K(+) channels, yet HCN channels open in response to membrane hyperpolarization instead of depolarization. The structural basis for the "inverted" voltage dependence of HCN gating and how voltage sensing by the S1-S4 domains is coupled to the opening of the intracellular gate formed by the S6 domain are unknown. Coupling could arise from interaction between specific residues or entire transmembrane domains. We previously reported that the mutation of specific residues in the S4-S5 linker of HCN2 (i.e. Tyr-331 and Arg-339) prevented normal channel closure presumably by disruption of a crucial interaction with the activation gate. Here we hypothesized that the C-linker, a carboxyl terminus segment that connects S6 to the cyclic nucleotide binding domain, interacts with specific residues of the S4-S5 linker to mediate coupling. The recently solved structure of the C-linker of HCN2 indicates that an alpha-helix (the A'-helix) is located near the end of each S6 domain, the presumed location of the activation gate. Ala-scanning mutagenesis of the end of S6 and the A'-helix identified five residues that were important for normal gating as mutations disrupted channel closure. However, partial deletion of the C-linker indicated that the presence of only two of these residues was required for normal coupling. Further mutation analyses suggested that a specific electrostatic interaction between Arg-339 of the S4-S5 linker and Asp-443 of the C-linker stabilizes the closed state and thus participates in the coupling of voltage sensing and activation gating in HCN channels.

  3. The N-Terminal Peptides of the Three Human Isoforms of the Mitochondrial Voltage-Dependent Anion Channel Have Different Helical Propensities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guardiani, Carlo; Scorciapino, Mariano Andrea; Amodeo, Giuseppe Federico; Grdadolnik, Joze; Pappalardo, Giuseppe; De Pinto, Vito; Ceccarelli, Matteo; Casu, Mariano

    2015-09-15

    The voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC) is the main mitochondrial porin allowing the exchange of ions and metabolites between the cytosol and the mitochondrion. In addition, VDAC was found to actively interact with proteins playing a fundamental role in the regulation of apoptosis and being of central interest in cancer research. VDAC is a large transmembrane β-barrel channel, whose N-terminal helical fragment adheres to the channel interior, partially closing the pore. This fragment is considered to play a key role in protein stability and function as well as in the interaction with apoptosis-related proteins. Three VDAC isoforms are differently expressed in higher eukaryotes, for which distinct and complementary roles are proposed. In this work, the folding propensity of their N-terminal fragments has been compared. By using multiple spectroscopic techniques, and complementing the experimental results with theoretical computer-assisted approaches, we have characterized their conformational equilibrium. Significant differences were found in the intrinsic helical propensity of the three peptides, decreasing in the following order: hVDAC2 > hVDAC3 > hVDAC1. In light of the models proposed in the literature to explain voltage gating, selectivity, and permeability, as well as interactions with functionally related proteins, our results suggest that the different chemicophysical properties of the N-terminal domain are possibly correlated to different functions for the three isoforms. The overall emerging picture is that a similar transmembrane water accessible conduit has been equipped with not identical domains, whose differences can modulate the functional roles of the three VDAC isoforms.

  4. Frequency and voltage dependence dielectric properties, ac electrical conductivity and electric modulus profiles in Al/Co3O4-PVA/p-Si structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bilkan, Çiğdem; Azizian-Kalandaragh, Yashar; Altındal, Şemsettin; Shokrani-Havigh, Roya

    2016-11-01

    In this research a simple microwave-assisted method have been used for preparation of cobalt oxide nanostructures. The as-prepared sample has been investigated by UV-vis spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM). On the other hand, frequency and voltage dependence of both the real and imaginary parts of dielectric constants (ε‧, ε″) and electric modulus (M‧ and M″), loss tangent (tanδ), and ac electrical conductivity (σac) values of Al/Co3O4-PVA/p-Si structures were obtained in the wide range of frequency and voltage using capacitance (C) and conductance (G/ω) data at room temperature. The values of ε‧, ε″ and tanδ were found to decrease with increasing frequency almost for each applied bias voltage, but the changes in these parameters become more effective in the depletion region at low frequencies due to the charges at surface states and their relaxation time and polarization effect. While the value of σ is almost constant at low frequency, increases almost as exponentially at high frequency which are corresponding to σdc and σac, respectively. The M‧ and M″ have low values at low frequencies region and then an increase with frequency due to short-range mobility of charge carriers. While the value of M‧ increase with increasing frequency, the value of M″ shows two peak and the peaks positions shifts to higher frequency with increasing applied voltage due to the decrease of the polarization and Nss effects with increasing frequency.

  5. The calmodulin inhibitor CGS 9343B inhibits voltage-dependent K{sup +} channels in rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li, Hongliang; Hong, Da Hye; Kim, Han Sol; Kim, Hye Won [Institute of Medical Sciences, Department of Physiology, Kangwon National University School of Medicine, Chuncheon, 200-701 (Korea, Republic of); Jung, Won-Kyo [Department of Biomedical Engineering, Center for Marine-Integrated Biomedical Technology (BK21 Plus), Pukyong National University, Busan 608-737 (Korea, Republic of); Na, Sung Hun [Institute of Medical Sciences, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Kangwon National University Hospital, School of Medicine, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon, 200-701 (Korea, Republic of); Jung, In Duk; Park, Yeong-Min [Department of Immunology, Lab of Dendritic Cell Differentiation and Regulation, College of Medicine, Konkuk University, Chungju 380-701 (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Il-Whan, E-mail: cihima@inje.ac.kr [Department of Microbiology, Inje University College of Medicine, Busan, 614-735 (Korea, Republic of); Park, Won Sun, E-mail: parkws@kangwon.ac.kr [Institute of Medical Sciences, Department of Physiology, Kangwon National University School of Medicine, Chuncheon, 200-701 (Korea, Republic of)

    2015-06-15

    We investigated the effects of the calmodulin inhibitor CGS 9343B on voltage-dependent K{sup +} (Kv) channels using whole-cell patch clamp technique in freshly isolated rabbit coronary arterial smooth muscle cells. CGS 9343B inhibited Kv currents in a concentration-dependent manner, with a half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC{sub 50}) value of 0.81 μM. The decay rate of Kv channel inactivation was accelerated by CGS 9343B. The rate constants of association and dissociation for CGS 9343B were 2.77 ± 0.04 μM{sup −1} s{sup −1} and 2.55 ± 1.50 s{sup −1}, respectively. CGS 9343B did not affect the steady-state activation curve, but shifted the inactivation curve toward to a more negative potential. Train pulses (1 or 2 Hz) application progressively increased the CGS 9343B-induced Kv channel inhibition. In addition, the inactivation recovery time constant was increased in the presence of CGS 9343B, suggesting that CGS 9343B-induced inhibition of Kv channel was use-dependent. Another calmodulin inhibitor, W-13, did not affect Kv currents, and did not change the inhibitory effect of CGS 9343B on Kv current. Our results demonstrated that CGS 9343B inhibited Kv currents in a state-, time-, and use-dependent manner, independent of calmodulin inhibition. - Highlights: • We investigated the effects of CGS 9394B on Kv channels. • CGS 9394B inhibited Kv current in a state-, time-, and use-dependent manner. • Caution is required when using CGS 9394B in vascular function studies.

  6. Sorption Enhanced Reaction Process (SERP) for production of hydrogen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anand, M.; Hufton, J.; Mayorga, S. [Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Allentown, PA (United States)] [and others

    1996-10-01

    Sorption Enhanced Reaction Process (SERP) is a novel process that is being developed for the production of lower cost hydrogen by steam-methane reforming (SMR). In this process the reaction of methane with steam is carried out in the presence of an admixture of a catalyst and a selective adsorbent for carbon dioxide. The key consequences of SERP are: (i) reformation reaction is carried out at a significantly lower temperature (300-500{degrees}C) than that in a conventional SMR reactor (800-1100{degrees}C), while achieving the same conversion of methane to hydrogen, (ii) the product hydrogen is obtained at reactor pressure (200-400 psig) and at 98+% purity directly from the reactor (compared to only 70-75% H{sub 2} from conventional SMR reactor), (iii) downstream hydrogen purification step is either eliminated or significantly reduced in size. The first phase of the program has focused on the development of a sorbent for CO{sub 2} which has (a) reversible CO{sub 2} capacity >0.3 mmol/g at low partial pressures of CO{sub 2} (0.1 - 1.0 atm) in the presence of excess steam (pH{sub 2}O/pCO{sub 2}>20) at 400-500{degrees}C and (b) fast sorption-desorption kinetics for CO{sub 2}, at 400-500{degrees}C. Several families of supported sorbents have been identified that meet the target CO{sub 2} capacity. A few of these sorbents have been tested under repeated sorption/desorption cycles and extended exposure to high pressure steam at 400-500{degrees}C. One sorbent has been scaled up to larger quantities (2-3 kg) and tested in the laboratory process equipment for sorption and desorption kinetics of CO{sub 2}. The CO{sub 2}, sorption and desorption kinetics are desirably fast. This was a critical path item for the first phase of the program and now has been successfully demonstrated. A reactor has been designed that will allow nearly isothermal operation for SERP-SMR. This reactor was integrated into an overall process flow diagram for the SERP-SMR process.

  7. Enhanced performance in graphene RF transistors via advanced process integration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Seul Ki; Oh, Joong Gun; Hwang, Wan Sik; Cho, Byung Jin

    2017-04-01

    The state-of-the-art performance of a graphene radio-frequency (RF) field-effect transistor (FET) made of chemical vapor deposition (CVD) graphene is presented. The record high cut-off frequency as high as 380 GHz using CVD graphene was attributed to the implementation of advanced process integration. On the one hand, interface engineering has become critical in two-dimensional (2D) electronics since the charge transport of a 2D electron system like graphene is highly affected by the interface. The interface engineering was made for both the top and bottom of the graphene surface by implementing a non-polar material (1, 3, 5-trimethyl-1, 3, 5-trivinyl cyclotrisiloxane). In contrast to conventional polar materials, such as SiO2, the non-polar materials significantly reduce the surface optical phonon scattering in the graphene channel, leading to the enhanced RF performance of graphene FET. On the other hand, micro-scaled holes over the multilayer graphene and self-aligned structure also become a critical factor in minimizing the parasitic resistance that is inversely proportional to RF performance. As the growth technique of CVD graphene greatly advances, the advanced process integration scheme could bring graphene electronics one step further towards practical application.

  8. Allyl isothiocyanate enhances shelf life of minimally processed shredded cabbage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Aparajita; Penna, Suprasanna; Variyar, Prasad S

    2015-09-15

    The effect of allyl isothiocyanate (AITC), in combination with low temperature (10°C) storage on post harvest quality of minimally processed shredded cabbage was investigated. An optimum concentration of 0.05μL/mL AITC was found to be effective in maintaining the microbial and sensory quality of the product for a period of 12days. Inhibition of browning was shown to result from a down-regulation (1.4-fold) of phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) gene expression and a consequent decrease in PAL enzyme activity and o-quinone content. In the untreated control samples, PAL activity increased following up-regulation in PAL gene expression that could be linearly correlated with enhanced o-quinone formation and browning. The efficacy of AITC in extending the shelf life of minimally processed shredded cabbage and its role in down-regulation of PAL gene expression resulting in browning inhibition in the product is reported here for the first time. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Supporting technology for enhanced oil recovery for thermal processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reid, T.B.; Bolivar, J.

    1997-12-01

    This report contains the results of efforts under the six tasks of the Ninth Amendment and Extension of Annex IV, Enhanced Oil Recovery Thermal Processes of the Venezuela/USA Agreement. The report is presented in sections (for each of the 6 tasks) and each section contains one or more reports prepared by various individuals or groups describing the results of efforts under each of the tasks. A statement of each task, taken from the agreement, is presented on the first page of each section. The tasks are numbered 62 through 67. The first, second, third, fourth fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth reports on Annex IV, [Venezuela MEM/USA-DOE Fossil Energy Report IV-1, IV-2, IV-3, IV-4, IV-5, IV-6, IV-7, and IV-8 (DOE/BETC/SP-83/15, DOE/BC-84/6/SP, DOE/BC-86/2/SP, DOE/BC-87/2/SP, DOE/BC-90/1/SP, DOE/BC-90/1/SP) (DOE/BC-92/1/SP, DOE/BC-93/3/SP, and DOE/BC-95/3/SP)] contain the results from the first 61 tasks. Those reports are dated April 1983, August 1984, March 1986, July 1987, November 1988, October 1991, February 1993, and March 1995 respectively.

  10. Transcriptional upregulation of α2δ-1 elevates arterial smooth muscle cell voltage-dependent Ca2+ channel surface expression and cerebrovascular constriction in genetic hypertension.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bannister, John P; Bulley, Simon; Narayanan, Damodaran; Thomas-Gatewood, Candice; Luzny, Patrik; Pachuau, Judith; Jaggar, Jonathan H

    2012-10-01

    A hallmark of hypertension is an increase in arterial myocyte voltage-dependent Ca2+ (CaV1.2) currents that induces pathological vasoconstriction. CaV1.2 channels are heteromeric complexes composed of a pore-forming CaV1.2α1 with auxiliary α2δ and β subunits. Molecular mechanisms that elevate CaV1.2 currents during hypertension and the potential contribution of CaV1.2 auxiliary subunits are unclear. Here, we investigated the pathological significance of α2δ subunits in vasoconstriction associated with hypertension. Age-dependent development of hypertension in spontaneously hypertensive rats was associated with an unequal elevation in α2δ-1 and CaV1.2α1 mRNA and protein in cerebral artery myocytes, with α2δ-1 increasing more than CaV1.2α1. Other α2δ isoforms did not emerge in hypertension. Myocytes and arteries of hypertensive spontaneously hypertensive rats displayed higher surface-localized α2δ-1 and CaV1.2α1 proteins, surface α2δ-1:CaV1.2α1 ratio, CaV1.2 current density and noninactivating current, and pressure- and depolarization-induced vasoconstriction than those of Wistar-Kyoto controls. Pregabalin, an α2δ-1 ligand, did not alter α2δ-1 or CaV1.2α1 total protein but normalized α2δ-1 and CaV1.2α1 surface expression, surface α2δ-1:CaV1.2α1, CaV1.2 current density and inactivation, and vasoconstriction in myocytes and arteries of hypertensive rats to control levels. Genetic hypertension is associated with an elevation in α2δ-1 expression that promotes surface trafficking of CaV1.2 channels in cerebral artery myocytes. This leads to an increase in CaV1.2 current-density and a reduction in current inactivation that induces vasoconstriction. Data also suggest that α2δ-1 targeting is a novel strategy that may be used to reverse pathological CaV1.2 channel trafficking to induce cerebrovascular dilation in hypertension.

  11. Temperature and voltage dependence of barrier height and ideality factor in Au/0.07 graphene-doped PVA/n-Si structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altındal Yerişkin, S.; Balbaşı, M.; Demirezen, S.

    2017-01-01

    In this study, Au/0.07 graphene-doped PVA/n-Si structures were fabricated and current conduction mechanism in these structures were investigated in the temperature range of 80-380 K through forward bias current-voltage (I-V) measurements. Main electrical parameters were extracted from I-V data. Zero-bias barrier height (overline{Φ}_{B0} ) and ideality factor (n) were found strong functions of temperature and their values ranged from 0.234 eV and 4.98 (at 80 K) to 0.882 eV and 1.15 (at 380 K), respectively. Φ ap versus q/2kT plot was drawn to obtain an evidence of a Gaussian distribution of the barrier heights (BHs) and it revealed two distinct linear regions with different slopes and intercepts. The mean values of BH (Φ Bo) and zero-bias standard deviation (σ s ) were obtained from the intercept and slope of the linear regions of this plot as 1.30 eV and 0.16 V for the first region (280-380 K) and 0.74 eV and 0.085 V for the second region (80-240 K), respectively. Thus, the values of overline{Φ}_{B0} and effective Richardson constant (A*) were also found from the intercept and slope of the modified Richardson plot [ln(I s /T 2) - q 2 σ {/o 2} /2k 2 T 2 vs q/kT] as 1.31 eV and 130 A/cm2 K2 for the first region and 0.76 eV and 922 A/cm2 K2 for the second region, respectively. The value of A* for the first region was very close to the theoretical value for n-Si (112 A/cm2 K2). The energy density distribution profile of surface states (Nss) was also extracted from the forward bias I-V data by taking into account voltage dependent effective BH (Φe) and n.

  12. Gaussian process modelling for uncertainty quantification in convectively-enhanced dissolution processes in porous media

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crevillén-García, D.; Wilkinson, R. D.; Shah, A. A.; Power, H.

    2017-01-01

    Numerical groundwater flow and dissolution models of physico-chemical processes in deep aquifers are usually subject to uncertainty in one or more of the model input parameters. This uncertainty is propagated through the equations and needs to be quantified and characterised in order to rely on the model outputs. In this paper we present a Gaussian process emulation method as a tool for performing uncertainty quantification in mathematical models for convection and dissolution processes in porous media. One of the advantages of this method is its ability to significantly reduce the computational cost of an uncertainty analysis, while yielding accurate results, compared to classical Monte Carlo methods. We apply the methodology to a model of convectively-enhanced dissolution processes occurring during carbon capture and storage. In this model, the Gaussian process methodology fails due to the presence of multiple branches of solutions emanating from a bifurcation point, i.e., two equilibrium states exist rather than one. To overcome this issue we use a classifier as a precursor to the Gaussian process emulation, after which we are able to successfully perform a full uncertainty analysis in the vicinity of the bifurcation point.

  13. Effects of different kinds of stretch on voltage-dependent calcium current in antrial circular smooth muscle cells of the guinea-pig%不同牵张刺激对豚鼠胃窦环行肌细胞电压依赖性钙电流的影响

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    许文燮; 李英; 吴龙仁; 李在琉

    2000-01-01

    利用全细胞膜片钳技术,在胃窦环行肌细胞上观察了不同方式的牵张刺激对电压依赖性钙电流的影响,探讨牵张刺激对胃窦平滑肌细胞电压依赖性钙电流的作用.用低渗性溶液灌流细胞引起的牵张刺激首先增加电压依赖性钙电流,接着激活一种内向性钳制电流.钙电流的增加发生在灌流后1 min内,而内向性钳制电流在细胞明显膨胀之后缓慢激活.低渗和正压引起的细胞膨胀明显增加电压依赖性钙离子电流,而利用两个电极直接牵拉细胞则不出现钙电流增加效应.结果提示: 细胞膜牵张增强电压依赖性钙通道的活性,而这一作用可能与牵拉引起的细胞所受的膜张力或/和牵拉的方向有关.%In order to elucidate the effect of membrane stretch on ionic currents, we employed the whole-cell patch-clamp technique to investigate the effects of different kinds of stretch on voltage-dependent calcium currents in antrial circular smooth muscle cells of the guinea-pig. The membrane stretch induced by superfusing the smooth muscle cells with hyposmotic bath solution enhanced voltage-operated calcium current and activated inward holding current. The increase in calcium current occurred within 1 minute of superfusion and the sustained inward holding current was slowly activated after prominent cell swelling. Voltage-dependent calcium currents (Ica) were significantly increased by membrane stretch which was induced by cell swelling and cell inflation, but was not affected by direct longitudinal stretch (110~130%) using two electrodes.The results suggest that the cell membrane stretch can increase voltage-dependent calcium channel activity and the effect of stretch on calcium channels was related to the membrane tension and/or the direction of membrane stretch.

  14. Enhancing Manufacturing Process Education via Computer Simulation and Visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manohar, Priyadarshan A.; Acharya, Sushil; Wu, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Industrially significant metal manufacturing processes such as melting, casting, rolling, forging, machining, and forming are multi-stage, complex processes that are labor, time, and capital intensive. Academic research develops mathematical modeling of these processes that provide a theoretical framework for understanding the process variables…

  15. TREATMENT TANK CORROSION STUDIES FOR THE ENHANCED CHEMICAL CLEANING PROCESS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiersma, B.

    2011-08-24

    Radioactive waste is stored in high level waste tanks on the Savannah River Site (SRS). Savannah River Remediation (SRR) is aggressively seeking to close the non-compliant Type I and II waste tanks. The removal of sludge (i.e., metal oxide) heels from the tank is the final stage in the waste removal process. The Enhanced Chemical Cleaning (ECC) process is being developed and investigated by SRR to aid in Savannah River Site (SRS) High-Level Waste (HLW) as an option for sludge heel removal. Corrosion rate data for carbon steel exposed to the ECC treatment tank environment was obtained to evaluate the degree of corrosion that occurs. These tests were also designed to determine the effect of various environmental variables such as temperature, agitation and sludge slurry type on the corrosion behavior of carbon steel. Coupon tests were performed to estimate the corrosion rate during the ECC process, as well as determine any susceptibility to localized corrosion. Electrochemical studies were performed to develop a better understanding of the corrosion mechanism. The tests were performed in 1 wt.% and 2.5 wt.% oxalic acid with HM and PUREX sludge simulants. The following results and conclusions were made based on this testing: (1) In 1 wt.% oxalic acid with a sludge simulant, carbon steel corroded at a rate of less than 25 mpy within the temperature and agitation levels of the test. No susceptibility to localized corrosion was observed. (2) In 2.5 wt.% oxalic acid with a sludge simulant, the carbon steel corrosion rates ranged between 15 and 88 mpy. The most severe corrosion was observed at 75 C in the HM/2.5 wt.% oxalic acid simulant. Pitting and general corrosion increased with the agitation level at this condition. No pitting and lower general corrosion rates were observed with the PUREX/2.5 wt.% oxalic acid simulant. The electrochemical and coupon tests both indicated that carbon steel is more susceptible to localized corrosion in the HM/oxalic acid environment than

  16. TREATMENT TANK CORROSION STUDIES FOR THE ENHANCED CHEMICAL CLEANING PROCESS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiersma, B.

    2011-08-24

    Radioactive waste is stored in high level waste tanks on the Savannah River Site (SRS). Savannah River Remediation (SRR) is aggressively seeking to close the non-compliant Type I and II waste tanks. The removal of sludge (i.e., metal oxide) heels from the tank is the final stage in the waste removal process. The Enhanced Chemical Cleaning (ECC) process is being developed and investigated by SRR to aid in Savannah River Site (SRS) High-Level Waste (HLW) as an option for sludge heel removal. Corrosion rate data for carbon steel exposed to the ECC treatment tank environment was obtained to evaluate the degree of corrosion that occurs. These tests were also designed to determine the effect of various environmental variables such as temperature, agitation and sludge slurry type on the corrosion behavior of carbon steel. Coupon tests were performed to estimate the corrosion rate during the ECC process, as well as determine any susceptibility to localized corrosion. Electrochemical studies were performed to develop a better understanding of the corrosion mechanism. The tests were performed in 1 wt.% and 2.5 wt.% oxalic acid with HM and PUREX sludge simulants. The following results and conclusions were made based on this testing: (1) In 1 wt.% oxalic acid with a sludge simulant, carbon steel corroded at a rate of less than 25 mpy within the temperature and agitation levels of the test. No susceptibility to localized corrosion was observed. (2) In 2.5 wt.% oxalic acid with a sludge simulant, the carbon steel corrosion rates ranged between 15 and 88 mpy. The most severe corrosion was observed at 75 C in the HM/2.5 wt.% oxalic acid simulant. Pitting and general corrosion increased with the agitation level at this condition. No pitting and lower general corrosion rates were observed with the PUREX/2.5 wt.% oxalic acid simulant. The electrochemical and coupon tests both indicated that carbon steel is more susceptible to localized corrosion in the HM/oxalic acid environment than

  17. High school music classes enhance the neural processing of speech

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam eTierney

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Should music be a priority in public education? One argument for teaching music in school is that private music instruction relates to enhanced language abilities and neural function. However, the directionality of this relationship is unclear and it is unknown whether school-based music training can produce these enhancements. Here we show that two years of group music classes in high school enhance the subcortical encoding of speech. To tease apart the relationships between music and neural function, we tested high school students participating in either music or fitness-based training. These groups were matched at the onset of training on neural timing, reading ability, and IQ. Auditory brainstem responses were collected to a synthesized speech sound presented in background noise. After 2 years of training, the subcortical responses of the music training group were earlier than at pretraining, while the neural timing of students in the fitness training group was unchanged. These results represent the strongest evidence to date that in-school music education can cause enhanced speech encoding. The neural benefits of musical training are, therefore, not limited to expensive private instruction early in childhood but can be elicited by cost-effective group instruction during adolescence.

  18. High school music classes enhance the neural processing of speech.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tierney, Adam; Krizman, Jennifer; Skoe, Erika; Johnston, Kathleen; Kraus, Nina

    2013-01-01

    Should music be a priority in public education? One argument for teaching music in school is that private music instruction relates to enhanced language abilities and neural function. However, the directionality of this relationship is unclear and it is unknown whether school-based music training can produce these enhancements. Here we show that 2 years of group music classes in high school enhance the neural encoding of speech. To tease apart the relationships between music and neural function, we tested high school students participating in either music or fitness-based training. These groups were matched at the onset of training on neural timing, reading ability, and IQ. Auditory brainstem responses were collected to a synthesized speech sound presented in background noise. After 2 years of training, the neural responses of the music training group were earlier than at pre-training, while the neural timing of students in the fitness training group was unchanged. These results represent the strongest evidence to date that in-school music education can cause enhanced speech encoding. The neural benefits of musical training are, therefore, not limited to expensive private instruction early in childhood but can be elicited by cost-effective group instruction during adolescence.

  19. Enhancing the Teaching of Digital Processing of Remote Sensing Image Course through Geospatial Web Processing Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    di, L.; Deng, M.

    2010-12-01

    Remote sensing (RS) is an essential method to collect data for Earth science research. Huge amount of remote sensing data, most of them in the image form, have been acquired. Almost all geography departments in the world offer courses in digital processing of remote sensing images. Such courses place emphasis on how to digitally process large amount of multi-source images for solving real world problems. However, due to the diversity and complexity of RS images and the shortcomings of current data and processing infrastructure, obstacles for effectively teaching such courses still remain. The major obstacles include 1) difficulties in finding, accessing, integrating and using massive RS images by students and educators, and 2) inadequate processing functions and computing facilities for students to freely explore the massive data. Recent development in geospatial Web processing service systems, which make massive data, computing powers, and processing capabilities to average Internet users anywhere in the world, promises the removal of the obstacles. The GeoBrain system developed by CSISS is an example of such systems. All functions available in GRASS Open Source GIS have been implemented as Web services in GeoBrain. Petabytes of remote sensing images in NASA data centers, the USGS Landsat data archive, and NOAA CLASS are accessible transparently and processable through GeoBrain. The GeoBrain system is operated on a high performance cluster server with large disk storage and fast Internet connection. All GeoBrain capabilities can be accessed by any Internet-connected Web browser. Dozens of universities have used GeoBrain as an ideal platform to support data-intensive remote sensing education. This presentation gives a specific example of using GeoBrain geoprocessing services to enhance the teaching of GGS 588, Digital Remote Sensing taught at the Department of Geography and Geoinformation Science, George Mason University. The course uses the textbook "Introductory

  20. ENHANCING LEAN SUPPLY CHAIN MATURITY WITH BUSINESS PROCESS MANAGEMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jurij Jaklic

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available In today’s global market the main focus of competition is not only between different companies but also between supply chains. Technological changes and organizational improvements are important for effective supply chain management (SCM, however, the main cause of SCM improvements is not the implementation of an information system (IS itself, but rather a change and an integration of business processes. The paper summarizes the most important concepts of SCM and specifically concentrates on the importance of business process management (BPM in supply chains, because full advantages can be realized when business processes in the supply chain are well defined, integrated and managed. The main purpose of this paper is to show that successful SCM calls for the maturity of supply chain processes in all involved companies and at the supply chain level, which can be realized by using effective BPM methods. A necessary condition for growing of SCM in terms of supply chain process maturity levels is an inter-organizational information system development and process renovation. Yet, BPM should not be considered as a one-time project of IS implementation and process change, but as a permanent process performance measurement, analysis and continuous improvement of the supply chain processes. The concepts are illustrated with a case study of fuel supply process.

  1. Image Processing for Binarization Enhancement via Fuzzy Reasoning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dominguez, Jesus A. (Inventor)

    2009-01-01

    A technique for enhancing a gray-scale image to improve conversions of the image to binary employs fuzzy reasoning. In the technique, pixels in the image are analyzed by comparing the pixel's gray scale value, which is indicative of its relative brightness, to the values of pixels immediately surrounding the selected pixel. The degree to which each pixel in the image differs in value from the values of surrounding pixels is employed as the variable in a fuzzy reasoning-based analysis that determines an appropriate amount by which the selected pixel's value should be adjusted to reduce vagueness and ambiguity in the image and improve retention of information during binarization of the enhanced gray-scale image.

  2. Adaptive real-time signal processing for image enhancement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadjadi, Firooz A.; Au, Wing K.

    1993-09-01

    A significant need exists for autonomous landing of an aircraft in adverse weather conditions, e.g., fog, haze, rain or snow. Such systems must provide the pilot the ability to view the runway and its surrounding with timely display information for each weather landing category. The most important requirements of such vision systems include a large field-of-view, a high update/frame rate, and high spatial resolution at low glazing angle in poor visibility conditions. To satisfy these requirements, Honeywell's System and Research Center has developed and demonstrated through flight tests the feasibility of a synthetic vision system for aircraft landing. This paper introduces the concept of the synthetic vision system, based on the Honeywell 35 GHz millimeter wave radar. It provides a detailed discussion on the adaptive image enhancement algorithms and their real-time implementation. The algorithms include beam sharpening and range adaptive contrast enhancement.

  3. Systematic Procedure for Integrated Process Operation: Reverse Electro-Enhanced Dialysis (REED) during Lactic Acid Fermentation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prado Rubio, Oscar Andres; Jørgensen, Sten Bay; Jonsson, Gunnar Eigil

    2011-01-01

    The integration of lactic acid fermentation and Reverse Electro-Enhanced Dialysis (REED) is investigated based upon previously developed mathematical models. A goal driven process and operation design procedure is proposed and partially investigated. The conceptual analysis of the processes...

  4. Enhanced Multistatic Active Sonar via Innovative Signal Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering , P.O. Box 116130 University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611 phone: (352) 392-2642 fax: (352...Range-Doppler Imaging and Target Parameter Estimation in Multistatic Active Sonar Systems," IEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering , Vol. 39, No. 2, pp...3. DATES COVERED (From - To) Oct. 01, 2014-Sept. 30, 2015 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Enhanced Multistatic Active Sonar via Innovative Signal

  5. Enhancement of radiative processes in nanofibers with embedded plasmonic nanoparticles

    CERN Document Server

    Jurga, Radoslaw; Pisignano, Dario; Ciracì, Cristian

    2016-01-01

    Efficient manipulation and long distance transport of single-photons is a key component in nanoscale quantum optics. In this letter, we study the emission properties of an individual light emitter placed into a nanofiber and coupled to a metallic nanoparticle. We find that plasmonic field enhancement together with the nanofiber optical confinement uniquely and synergistically contribute to an overall increase of emission rates as well as quantum yields.

  6. Enhancing the Teaching-Learning Process: A Knowledge Management Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhusry, Mamta; Ranjan, Jayanthi

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to emphasize the need for knowledge management (KM) in the teaching-learning process in technical educational institutions (TEIs) in India, and to assert the impact of information technology (IT) based KM intervention in the teaching-learning process. Design/methodology/approach: The approach of the paper is…

  7. Using Statistical Process Control to Enhance Student Progression

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanna, Mark D.; Raichura, Nilesh; Bernardes, Ednilson

    2012-01-01

    Public interest in educational outcomes has markedly increased in the most recent decade; however, quality management and statistical process control have not deeply penetrated the management of academic institutions. This paper presents results of an attempt to use Statistical Process Control (SPC) to identify a key impediment to continuous…

  8. Enhancing the Teaching-Learning Process: A Knowledge Management Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhusry, Mamta; Ranjan, Jayanthi

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to emphasize the need for knowledge management (KM) in the teaching-learning process in technical educational institutions (TEIs) in India, and to assert the impact of information technology (IT) based KM intervention in the teaching-learning process. Design/methodology/approach: The approach of the paper is…

  9. The Role of Feature Enhanced Processing for Automatic Target Recognition using High Resolution Polarimetric SAR Data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Broek, A.C. van den; Steeghs, T.P.H.; Dekker, R.J.

    2005-01-01

    We have studied the effect of feature enhanced processing on the discrimination of targets in highresolution polarimetric ISAR and SAR images. This is done by comparing feature-based classification results for original images and images which have been pre-processed to enhance target features. The d

  10. Riemann problem for one-dimensional binary gas enhanced coalbed methane process

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2011-01-01

    With an extended Langmuir isotherm, a Riemann problem for one-dimensional binary gas enhanced coalbed methane (ECBM) process is investigated. A new analytical solution to the Riemann problem, based on the method of characteristics, is developed by introducing a gas selectivity ratio representing the gas relative sorption affinity. The influence of gas selectivity ratio on the enhanced coalbed methane processes is identified.

  11. Optimization of aqueous extraction process to enhance the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Kumar Sudhir

    2014-02-12

    Feb 12, 2014 ... Aqueous extraction process was optimized to reduce endotoxins from mixed substrate (1:1) for further phytase .... Microorganism and chemicals ..... The experimental design output (Table 2) was analyzed .... synthesis.

  12. Image processing and enhancement provided by commercial dental software programs

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lehmann, T M; Troeltsch, E; Spitzer, K

    2002-01-01

    To identify and analyse methods/algorithms for image processing provided by various commercial software programs used in direct digital dental imaging and to map them onto a standardized nomenclature...

  13. Enhancing the Processing Characteristics of Edible Beans Project

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Advanced life-support systems, which use chemical, physical, and biological processes, are being developed to support future long-term human planetary exploration....

  14. Enhancing lives together: reviewing the process of an organizational amalgamation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christoffersen, Emily; Cripps, Donna; Badzioch, Lillian; Sersen, Mary Anne; Flaherty, Brenda; Martin, Murray T

    2010-01-01

    The amalgamation between two hospitals creates a transition period of significant change, uncertainty and complexity. It is a challenging time within an organization that needs to be managed effectively. This article outlines the integration process and eight-step framework used during an amalgamation of an acute hospital organization and a post-acute hospital. The initial process evaluation and lessons learned are also presented.

  15. Process for the enhanced capture of heavy metal emissions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswas, Pratim; Wu, Chang-Yu

    2001-01-01

    This invention is directed to a process for forming a sorbent-metal complex. The process includes oxidizing a sorbent precursor and contacting the sorbent precursor with a metallic species. The process further includes chemically reacting the sorbent precursor and the metallic species, thereby forming a sorbent-metal complex. In one particular aspect of the invention, at least a portion of the sorbent precursor is transformed into sorbent particles during the oxidation step. These sorbent particles then are contacted with the metallic species and chemically reacted with the metallic species, thereby forming a sorbent-metal complex. Another aspect of the invention is directed to a process for forming a sorbent metal complex in a combustion system. The process includes introducing a sorbent precursor into a combustion system and subjecting the sorbent precursor to an elevated temperature sufficient to oxidize the sorbent precursor and transform the sorbent precursor into sorbent particles. The process further includes contacting the sorbent particles with a metallic species and exposing the sorbent particles and the metallic species to a complex-forming temperature whereby the metallic species reacts with the sorbent particles thereby forming a sorbent-metal complex under UV irradiation.

  16. Citicoline enhances neuroregenerative processes after experimental stroke in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diederich, Kai; Frauenknecht, Katrin; Minnerup, Jens; Schneider, Barbara K; Schmidt, Antje; Altach, Elena; Eggert, Verena; Sommer, Clemens J; Schäbitz, Wolf-Rüdiger

    2012-07-01

    The neuroprotective potential of citicoline in acute ischemic stroke has been shown in many experimental studies and, although the exact mechanisms are still unknown, a clinical Phase III trial is currently underway. Our present study was designed to check whether citicoline also enhances neuroregeneration after experimental stroke. Forty Wistar rats were subjected to photothrombotic stroke and treated either with daily injections of citicoline (100 mg/kg) or vehicle for 10 consecutive days starting 24 hours after ischemia induction. Sensorimotor tests were performed after an adequate training period at Days 1, 10, 21, and 28 after stroke. Then brains were removed and analyzed for infarct size, glial scar formation, neurogenesis, and ligand binding densities of excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors. Animals treated with citicoline showed a significantly better neurological outcome at Days 10, 21, and 28 after ischemia, which could not be attributed to differences in infarct volumes or glial scar formation. However, neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus, subventricular zone, and peri-infarct area was significantly increased by citicoline. Furthermore, enhanced neurological outcome after citicoline treatment was associated with a shift toward excitation in the perilesional cortex. Our present data demonstrate that, apart from the well-known neuroprotective effects in acute ischemic stroke, citicoline also possesses a substantial neuroregenerative potential. Thanks to its multimodal effects, easy applicability, and history as a well-tolerated drug, promising possibilities of neurological treatment including chronic stroke open up.

  17. Beta-scorpion toxin effects suggest electrostatic interactions in domain II of voltage-dependent sodium channels. : Electrostatic interactions between segments IIS2, IIS3 and IIS4 of Na+ channel.

    OpenAIRE

    Mantegazza, Massimo; Cestèle, Sandrine

    2005-01-01

    International audience; Beta-scorpion toxins specifically modulate the voltage dependence of sodium channel activation by acting through a voltage-sensor trapping model. We used mutagenesis, functional analysis and the action of beta-toxin as tools to investigate the existence and role in channel activation of molecular interactions between the charged residues of the S2, S3 and S4 segments in domain II of sodium channels. Mutating to arginine the acidic residues of the S2 and S3 transmembran...

  18. PLS-based memory control scheme for enhanced process monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Harrou, Fouzi

    2017-01-20

    Fault detection is important for safe operation of various modern engineering systems. Partial least square (PLS) has been widely used in monitoring highly correlated process variables. Conventional PLS-based methods, nevertheless, often fail to detect incipient faults. In this paper, we develop new PLS-based monitoring chart, combining PLS with multivariate memory control chart, the multivariate exponentially weighted moving average (MEWMA) monitoring chart. The MEWMA are sensitive to incipient faults in the process mean, which significantly improves the performance of PLS methods and widen their applicability in practice. Using simulated distillation column data, we demonstrate that the proposed PLS-based MEWMA control chart is more effective in detecting incipient fault in the mean of the multivariate process variables, and outperform the conventional PLS-based monitoring charts.

  19. Enhanced Spreading Dynamics by Non-Poissonian Processes

    CERN Document Server

    Jo, Hang-Hyun; Kaski, Kimmo; Kertész, János

    2013-01-01

    In order to characterize in detail the nature of temporally inhomogeneous spreading processes we introduce a novel dynamic mean field model to investigate analytically the effect of non-Poissonian or bursty inter-event time distributions on the Susceptible-Infected (SI) spreading dynamics. The exact solution shows that for early and intermediate times bursty dynamics accelerates the spreading as compared to a corresponding Poisson-like process with the same mean activity and lower bound of the inter-event times. The late time dynamics in finite systems is the opposite, where the power law distribution of inter-event times results in a slower and algebraic convergence to the asymptotics as compared to the exponential decay of the Poisson-like process.

  20. Gap bridging enhancement of modified Urca process in nuclear matter

    CERN Document Server

    Alford, Mark G

    2016-01-01

    In nuclear matter at neutron-star densities and temperatures, Cooper pairing leads to the formation of a gap in the nucleon excitation spectra resulting in exponentially strong Boltzmann suppression of many transport coefficients. Previous calculations have shown evidence that density oscillations of sufficiently large amplitude can overcome this suppression for flavor-changing beta processes, via the mechanism of "gap bridging". We address the simplifications made in that initial work, and show that gap bridging can counteract Boltzmann suppression of neutrino emissivity for the realistic case of modified Urca processes in matter with $^3P_2$ neutron pairing.

  1. Enzyme Assay: An Investigative Approach to Enhance Science Process Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vartak, Rekha; Ronad, Anupama; Ghanekar, Vikrant

    2013-01-01

    Scientific investigations play a vital role in teaching and learning the process of science. An investigative task that was developed for pre-university students is described here. The task involves extraction of an enzyme from a vegetable source and its detection by biochemical method. At the beginning of the experiment, a hypothesis is presented…

  2. Enhanced 3D face processing using an active vision system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lidegaard, Morten; Larsen, Rasmus; Kraft, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    We present an active face processing system based on 3D shape information extracted by means of stereo information. We use two sets of stereo cameras with different field of views (FOV): One with a wide FOV is used for face tracking, while the other with a narrow FOV is used for face identificati...

  3. Amalgamation of Anomaly-Detection Indices for Enhanced Process Monitoring

    KAUST Repository

    Harrou, Fouzi

    2016-01-29

    Accurate and effective anomaly detection and diagnosis of modern industrial systems are crucial for ensuring reliability and safety and for maintaining desired product quality. Anomaly detection based on principal component analysis (PCA) has been studied intensively and largely applied to multivariate processes with highly cross-correlated process variables; howver conventional PCA-based methods often fail to detect small or moderate anomalies. In this paper, the proposed approach integrates two popular process-monitoring detection tools, the conventional PCA-based monitoring indices Hotelling’s T2 and Q and the exponentially weighted moving average (EWMA). We develop two EWMA tools based on the Q and T2 statistics, T2-EWMA and Q-EWMA, to detect anomalies in the process mean. The performances of the proposed methods were compared with that of conventional PCA-based anomaly-detection methods by applying each method to two examples: a synthetic data set and experimental data collected from a flow heating system. The results clearly show the benefits and effectiveness of the proposed methods over conventional PCA-based methods.

  4. Energy enhancer for mask based laser materials processing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bastue, Jens; Olsen, Flemmming Ove

    1996-01-01

    A device capable of drastically improving the energy efficiency of present mask based laser materials processing systems is presented. Good accordance between experiments and simulations for a TEA-CO2 laser system designed for laser marking has been demonstrated. The energy efficiency may...

  5. Resolution enhancement techniques for submicron deep trench processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Lijun; Hsiang, Joyce; Lin, Kuanchih; Newman, Gary

    1999-08-01

    Due to the rapid advancements in the data storage market, the development of new technologies and mechanisms are needed to support the continued growth of data storage systems. The concept and technology of Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS) can provide opportunities to meet these demands. Correspondingly, new MEMS devices can be made commercially available by sharing the benefits of developments in data storage systems. The photolithography requirements for thin film head (TFH) processing have grown increasingly challenging. Specifically, the resolution of submicron isolated features is required in thick photoresist; resulting in aspect ratios of nearly 10 to 1. To satisfy these imaging requirements, the use of i-line reduction lithography tools with variable numerical aperture and partial coherence are necessary. This study examines the influence of NA, (sigma) , and reticle bias on critical features in a typical TFH write-layer process. Combinations of NA and (sigma) were investigated for their impact on minimum feature size, process latitude, and sidewall angle. Process latitude was quantified for each illumination condition over a range of focus and exposure conditions.

  6. Organic solar cells: Degradation processes and approaches to enhance performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungura, Fadzai

    Organic solar cells (OSCs) have attracted a lot of attention due to their potential as flexible, lightweight, and low-cost renewable energy sources. Significant improvements have been made in increasing the devices' power conversion efficiency (PCE) and extensive efforts to understand degradation mechanisms and increase OSCs' lifetimes are ongoing. OSCs with higher than 10% efficiency have been reported. Enhanced stability and efficiency of inverted poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) solar cells with Cesium (Cs) halides were achieved by spin-coating Bphen (4,7-di(phenyl)-1,10-phenanthroline) on the halide layer and adding an 100nm polystyrene beads layer on the blank side of the OSC. To investigate photodegradation in a low-bandgap polymer, PBDTTT-EFT (benzo[1,2-b:4,5-b']dithiophene (BDT) and thieno[3,4-b]-thiophene), PBDTTT-EFT:PCBM bulk heterojunction (BHJ) solar cells were irradiated under 1X sun intensity and their electronic measurements were monitored over time. The electronic measurements revealed an increase in deep defect density in the polymer and at the donor-acceptor (D/A) interface of BHJ SCs and an increase in charge recombination as well as a decrease in external quantum efficiency, charge collection, short circuit current, open circuit voltage and hole mobility. Filtering blue and UV light resulted in drastically reduced photodegradation. Electron paramagnetic resonance measurements were performed on the photodegraded polymer and BHJ films, and revealed for the first time experimental evidence for metastable carbon dangling bonds (g=2.0029+/-0.0004) formed by blue/UV irradiation of the films. Dark EPR showed an increase in densities of other spin-active sites in the polymer, fullerene and polymer:fullerene blends in agreement with electronic measurements. The EPR results revealed that the carbon dangling bonds were at the D/A interface. These studies helped to better understand degradation mechanisms in a low-bandgap polymer, PBDTTT-EFT, ways to enhance

  7. Application of Anodization Process for Cast Aluminium Surface Properties Enhancement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Włodarczyk-Fligier A.

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available An huge interest is observed in last years in metal matrix composite, mostly light metal based, which have found their applications in many industry branches, among others in the aircraft industry, automotive-, and armaments ones, as well as in electrical engineering and electronics, where one of the most important issue is related to the corrosion resistance, especially on the surface layer of the used aluminium alloys. This elaboration presents the influence of ceramic phase on the corrosion resistance, quality of the surface layer its thickness and structure of an anodic layer formed on aluminium alloys. As test materials it was applied the aluminium alloys Al-Si-Cu and Al-Cu-Mg, for which heat treatment processes and corrosion tests were carried out. It was presented herein grindability test results and metallographic examination, as well. Hardness of the treated alloys with those ones subjected to corrosion process were compared.

  8. Kinesiological Development: Interpretation of a Process to Enhance Body Movement

    OpenAIRE

    2006-01-01

    This article makes a review about the process offunctional movement production along first yearRecibido: diciembre 15, 2005.Aceptado: enero 10, 2006.* Fisioterapeuta. Especialista en Neurodesarrollo, AsociaciónNorteamericana de Neurodesarrollo. Especialista enDocencia Universitaria, Universidad del Rosario. Docentedel programa de Fisioterapia de la Universidad del Rosario.E-mail: lo kinesiológico: la interpretaciónde un proceso para facilitar el movimientocorpo...

  9. ENHANCING LEAN SUPPLY CHAIN MATURITY WITH BUSINESS PROCESS MANAGEMENT

    OpenAIRE

    Jurij Jaklic; Peter Trkman; Ales Groznik; Mojca Indihar Stemberger

    2006-01-01

    In today’s global market the main focus of competition is not only between different companies but also between supply chains. Technological changes and organizational improvements are important for effective supply chain management (SCM), however, the main cause of SCM improvements is not the implementation of an information system (IS) itself, but rather a change and an integration of business processes. The paper summarizes the most important concepts of SCM and specifically concentrates o...

  10. Enhancement of MS Signal Processing For Improved Cancer Biomarker Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, Qian

    Technological advances in proteomics have shown great potential in detecting cancer at the earliest stages. One way is to use the time of flight mass spectroscopy to identify biomarkers, or early disease indicators related to the cancer. Pattern analysis of time of flight mass spectra data from blood and tissue samples gives great hope for the identification of potential biomarkers among the complex mixture of biological and chemical samples for the early cancer detection. One of the keys issues is the pre-processing of raw mass spectra data. A lot of challenges need to be addressed: unknown noise character associated with the large volume of data, high variability in the mass spectroscopy measurements, and poorly understood signal background and so on. This dissertation focuses on developing statistical algorithms and creating data mining tools for computationally improved signal processing for mass spectrometry data. I have introduced an advanced accurate estimate of the noise model and a half-supervised method of mass spectrum data processing which requires little knowledge about the data.

  11. Enhanced fabrication process of zinc oxide nanowires for optoelectronics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    García Núñez, C., E-mail: carlos.garcia@uam.es [Grupo de Electrónica y Semiconductores, Departamento de Física Aplicada, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 28049 Madrid (Spain); Pau, J.L.; Ruíz, E.; García Marín, A.; García, B.J.; Piqueras, J. [Grupo de Electrónica y Semiconductores, Departamento de Física Aplicada, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 28049 Madrid (Spain); Shen, G.; Wilbert, D.S.; Kim, S.M.; Kung, P. [Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487 (United States)

    2014-03-31

    Zinc oxide (ZnO) nanowires (NWs) based ultraviolet (UV) sensors have been fabricated using different assembly techniques to form functional structures, aiming at the improvement of the performance of NW-based sensors for optoelectronic applications. NWs with diameters and lengths varying between 90–870 nm and 2–20 μm, respectively, were synthesized by controlling the growth conditions in a chemical vapor transport system. Optical properties of NWs were studied by means of transmission spectroscopy. Electrical properties of single ZnO NW-based sensors were analyzed in dark and under UV illumination (at photon wavelength of λ < 370 nm) as a function of the NW diameter. Results of the study indicate that reduction of the NW diameter below 200 nm leads to an improvement of the photocurrent (at λ < 370 nm) up to 10{sup 2} μA and a decrease of the decay time around 150 s. These enhancements may help to improve the performance of ZnO-based optoelectronic devices. - Highlights: • ZnO nanowires (NWs) with diameters 90–870 nm were grown by chemical vapor transport. • ZnO NWs showed strong absorption in the UV range. • Different assembly techniques were tested for preparing ZnO NW-based UV sensors. • Sensor photoresponses were around 10{sup 3} A/W. • Reducing NW diameter below 200 nm improved sensor photosensitivity.

  12. Enhancing flood forecasting with the help of processed based calibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cullmann, Johannes; Krauße, Thomas; Philipp, Andy

    Due to the fact that the required input data are not always completely available and model structures are only a crude description of the underlying natural processes, model parameters need to be calibrated. Calibrated model parameters only reflect a small domain of the natural processes well. This imposes an obstacle on the accuracy of modelling a wide range of flood events, which, in turn is crucial for flood forecasting systems. Together with the rigid model structures of currently available rainfall-runoff models this presents a serious constraint to portraying the highly non-linear transformation of precipitation into runoff. Different model concepts (interflow, direct runoff), or rather the represented processes, such as infiltration, soil water movement etc. are more or less dominating different sections of the runoff spectrum. Most models do not account for such transient characteristics inherent to the hydrograph. In this paper we try to show a way out of the dilemma of limited model parameter validity. Exemplarily, we investigate on the model performance of WaSiM-ETH, focusing on the parameterisation strategy in the context of flood forecasting. In order to compensate for the non-transient parameters of the WaSiM model we propose a process based parameterisation strategy. This starts from a detailed analysis of the considered catchments rainfall-runoff characteristics. Based on a classification of events, WaSiM-ETH is calibrated and validated to describe all the event classes separately. These specific WaSiM-ETH event class models are then merged to improve the model performance in predicting peak flows. This improved catchment modelling can be used to train an artificial intelligence based black box forecasting tool as described in [Schmitz, G.H., Cullmann, J., Görner, W., Lennartz, F., Dröge, W., 2005. PAI-OFF: Eine neue Strategie zur Hochwasservorhersage in schnellreagierenden Einzugsgebieten. Hydrologie und Wasserbewirtschaftung 49, 226

  13. Nanoscale control of interfacial processes for latent fingerprint enhancement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sapstead, Rachel M; Ryder, Karl S; Fullarton, Claire; Skoda, Maximilian; Dalgliesh, Robert M; Watkins, Erik B; Beebee, Charlotte; Barker, Robert; Glidle, Andrew; Hillman, A Robert

    2013-01-01

    Latent fingerprints on metal surfaces may be visualized by exploiting the insulating characteristics of the fingerprint deposit as a "mask" to direct electrodeposition of an electroactive polymer to the bare metal between the fingerprint ridges. This approach is complementary to most latent fingerprint enhancement methods, which involve physical or chemical interaction with the fingerprint residue. It has the advantages of sensitivity (a nanoscale residue can block electron transfer) and, using a suitable polymer, optimization of visual contrast. This study extends the concept in two significant respects. First, it explores the feasibility of combining observation based on optical absorption with observation based on fluorescence. Second, it extends the methodology to materials (here, polypyrrole) that may undergo post-deposition substitution chemistry, here binding of a fluorophore whose size and geometry preclude direct polymerization of the functionalised monomer. The scenario involves a lateral spatial image (the whole fingerprint, first level detail) at the centimetre scale, with identification features (minutiae, second level detail) at the 100-200 microm scale and finer features (third level detail) at the 10-50 microm scale. However, the strategy used requires vertical spatial control of the (electro)chemistry at the 10-100 nm scale. We show that this can be accomplished by polymerization of pyrrole functionalised with a good leaving group, ester-bound FMOC, which can be hydrolysed and eluted from the deposited polymer to generate solvent "voids". Overall the "void" volume and the resulting effect on polymer dynamics facilitate entry and amide bonding of Dylight 649 NHS ester, a large fluorophore. FTIR spectra demonstrate the spatially integrated compositional changes. Both the hydrolysis and fluorophore functionalization were followed using neutron reflectivity to determine vertical spatial composition variations, which control image development in the

  14. ISTAT DATA UTILIZATION TO ENHANCE LANDSAT 8 IMAGES CLASSIFICATION PROCESS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Mugnoli

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available ISTAT geographic data, updated to realize census 2010 project in October 2011, represents an useful resource to improve the results derived from Land cover/use cartography or satellite image processing. In fact, both ISTAT vector data and other cartography data (i.e. satellite image classification can be integrated to realize a product that can help to better understand land cover data especially in urban environment (i. e. urban sprawl, although it can’t be considered a cartography product in a strict sense. This paper summarizes an experimental study based on a LANDSAT 8 image that cover completely 5 provinces in the north of Italy, where it’s shown that ISTAT data, DEM and combine of NDVI and NDBI indices can improve the results of the satellite image classification process, especially in urban areas. Used SW: ARCGIS 10.1 for desktop (ArcInfo license and ERDAS Imagine.

  15. Chronic electroconvulsive stimulation but not chronic restraint stress modulates mRNA expression of voltage-dependent potassium channels Kv7.2 and Kv11.1 in the rat piriform cortex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjæresen, Marie-Louise; Hageman, Ida; Plenge, Per

    2008-01-01

    The mechanisms by which stress and electroconvulsive therapy exert opposite effects on the course of major depression are not known. Potential candidates might include the voltage-dependent potassium channels. Potassium channels play an important role in maintaining the resting membrane potential...... and controlling neuronal excitability. To explore this hypothesis, we examined the effects of one or several electroconvulsive stimulations and chronic restraint stress (6 h/day for 21 days) on the expression of voltage-dependent potassium channel Kv7.2, Kv11.1, and Kv11.3 mRNA in the rat brain using in situ...... hybridization. Repeated, but not acute, electroconvulsive stimulation increased Kv7.2 and Kv11.1 mRNA levels in the piriform cortex. In contrast, restraint stress had no significant effect on mRNA expression of Kv7.2, Kv11.1, or Kv11.3 in any of the brain regions examined. Thus, it appears that the investigated...

  16. DENITRIFICATION PROCESS ENHANCING IN FOUR-STAGES ROTATING BIOLOGICAL CONTACTOR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Artur Mielcarek

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study was to determine the degree of an organic substrate consumption in the denitrification process involving a biofilm in four-stages laboratory scale rotating biological contactor (RBC. The discs submergence was 40% of their diameter. Acetic acid, used as external carbon source, was fed to the fourth stage of RBC. Consumption of substrate was observed for 2 and 24 hours. For a shorter period there was the removal of 37.9 ± 1.8 mg N·m-2, while using 499,9 ± 33.2 mg O2·m-2 of organic compounds. The prolongation of the experiment duration guaranteed higher efficiency of denitrification. The ratio of organic substrate used to the amount of nitrogen removed was 13: 1 and 21: 1 for 2 and 24 hours respectively.

  17. Numerical Modeling of Natural and Enhanced Denitrification Processes in Aquifers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinzelbach, Wolfgang; SchäFer, Wolfgang; Herzer, JöRg

    1991-06-01

    Nitrate modeling in the groundwater environment must incorporate microbial denitrification as the major process of nitrate elimination. A multispecies transport model is presented which describes the interaction of oxygen, nitrate, organic carbon, and bacteria. Three phases (mobile pore water, biophase, and aquifer material) are taken into account. The model is applied to a natural aquifer situation as well as to an in situ remediation case where nitrate is employed as an oxidant. In the natural aquifer it is shown that the release of organic carbon from the matrix is the controlling factor for denitrification. In the remediation case, on the other hand, the data suggest that diffusion limitation of the nutrient supply to the biophase controls bacterial growth.

  18. Graphics Processing Unit Enhanced Parallel Document Flocking Clustering

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cui, Xiaohui [ORNL; Potok, Thomas E [ORNL; ST Charles, Jesse Lee [ORNL

    2010-01-01

    Analyzing and clustering documents is a complex problem. One explored method of solving this problem borrows from nature, imitating the flocking behavior of birds. One limitation of this method of document clustering is its complexity O(n2). As the number of documents grows, it becomes increasingly difficult to generate results in a reasonable amount of time. In the last few years, the graphics processing unit (GPU) has received attention for its ability to solve highly-parallel and semi-parallel problems much faster than the traditional sequential processor. In this paper, we have conducted research to exploit this archi- tecture and apply its strengths to the flocking based document clustering problem. Using the CUDA platform from NVIDIA, we developed a doc- ument flocking implementation to be run on the NVIDIA GEFORCE GPU. Performance gains ranged from thirty-six to nearly sixty times improvement of the GPU over the CPU implementation.

  19. Enhanced 3D face processing using an active vision system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lidegaard, Morten; Larsen, Rasmus; Kraft, Dirk;

    2014-01-01

    of the narrow FOV camera. We substantiate these two observations by qualitative results on face reconstruction and quantitative results on face recognition. As a consequence, such a set-up allows to achieve better and much more flexible system for 3D face reconstruction e.g. for recognition or emotion......We present an active face processing system based on 3D shape information extracted by means of stereo information. We use two sets of stereo cameras with different field of views (FOV): One with a wide FOV is used for face tracking, while the other with a narrow FOV is used for face identification....... We argue for two advantages of such a system: First, an extended work range, and second, the possibility to place the narrow FOV camera in a way such that a much better reconstruction quality can be achieved compared to a static camera even if the face had been fully visible in the periphery...

  20. The Method of Enhancing Ability of VB's Image Processing Using APl

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhang,Zhaochen; Ma,Jing; Han,Zhongdong

    2003-01-01

    This paper introduces a method of the enhancing ability ofVB's image processing using API. It expanded the competency of im-age processing and raised the efficiency of executive program by oper-ating the functions display buffer oriented during image processing. Thesatisfactory purpose is gained through contrast stretching referring tounderexposured and upperexposured X-ray image about bosom.

  1. Enhanced uptake of water by oxidatively processed oleic acid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Asad

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available A quartz crystal microbalance apparatus has been used to measure the room temperature uptake of water vapour by thin films of oleic acid as a function of relative humidity, both before and following exposure of the films to various partial pressures of gas phase ozone. A rapid increase in the water-sorbing ability of the film is observed as its exposure to ozone is increased, followed by a plateau region in which additional water is taken up more gradually. In this fully-processed region the mass of water taken up by the film is about 4 times that of the unprocessed film. Infrared spectra of the films, measured after variable exposures to ozone, show dramatic increases in both the 'free' and hydrogen-bonded O-H stretching regions, and a decrease in the intensity of olefinic features. These results are consistent with the formation of an oxygenated polymeric product or products, as well as the gas phase products previously identified.

  2. New Sensor Concepts for Enhancing Heat Treatment Processes and Analysis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jay I. Frankel

    2004-01-01

    The need for developing accurate quenching models requires an extensive experimental database that includes surface heat flux characterization. Quantification of the quenching process permits i) the development of high-quality heat treated products, ii) the evaluation of new quenchants and quenchant systems, and iii) the evaluation of quenchant quality over usage time. The surface heat transfer coefficient (or heat flux) is rarely measured, calculated or modeled in sufficient detail for real scientific use. Many single-thermocouple based probes are designed for the purpose of measuring the cooling power of a liquid quenchant or for monitoring quenchant quality. Lumped based probes are sufficient for these types of applications. However, the lack of sufficient distributed detail impedes the development of future high-quality heat-treated products. Frankel and his coworkers are developing a new family of transient thermal-rate sensors that will improve both diagnostic and real-time analyzes in heat transfer studies. Analyzes have been performed indicating that there exists a novel,thermal-rate sensor hierarchy that stabilizes predictions when used with analysis. This concept can be used for investigating both (i) direct surface heat transfer effects, and (ii) projective surface analysis based on embedded sensors. This new sensor family includes the ability to measure temperature, T; heat flux, q"; and their temporal derivatives, i.e., dT/dt, d2T/dt2 and dq"/dt.

  3. Enhanced Productivity of Chemical Processes Using Dense Fluidized Beds

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sibashis Banerjee; Alvin Chen; Rutton Patel; Dale Snider; Ken Williams; Timothy O' Hern; Paul Tortora

    2008-02-29

    The work detailed in this report addresses Enabling Technologies within Computational Technology by integrating a “breakthrough” particle-fluid computational technology into traditional Process Science and Engineering Technology. The work completed under this DOE project addresses five major development areas 1) gas chemistry in dense fluidized beds 2) thermal cracking of liquid film on solids producing gas products 3) liquid injection in a fluidized bed with particle-to-particle liquid film transport 4) solid-gas chemistry and 5) first level validation of models. Because of the nature of the research using tightly coupled solids and fluid phases with a Lagrangian description of the solids and continuum description of fluid, the work provides ground-breaking advances in reactor prediction capability. This capability has been tested against experimental data where available. The commercial product arising out of this work is called Barracuda and is suitable for a wide (dense-to-dilute) range of industrial scale gas-solid flows with and without reactions. Commercial applications include dense gas-solid beds, gasifiers, riser reactors and cyclones.

  4. Enhanced uptake of water by oxidatively processed oleic acid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Asad

    2004-07-01

    Full Text Available A quartz crystal microbalance apparatus has been used to measure the room temperature uptake of water vapour by thin films of oleic acid as a function of relative humidity, both before and following exposure of the films to various partial pressures of gas phase ozone. A rapid increase in the water-sorbing ability of the film is observed as its exposure to ozone is increased, followed by a plateau region in which no additional water is taken up. In this fully-processed region the mass of water taken up by the film is about 4 times that of the unprocessed film. Infrared spectra of the films, measured after variable exposures to ozone, show dramatic increases in both the "free" and hydrogen-bonded O-H stretching regions, and a decrease in the intensity of olefinic features. These results are consistent with the formation of an oxygenated polymeric product or products, as well as the gas phase products previously identified.

  5. Optimized Enhanced Bioremediation Through 4D Geophysical Monitoring and Autonomous Data Collection, Processing and Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-01

    ER-200717) Optimized Enhanced Bioremediation Through 4D Geophysical Monitoring and Autonomous Data Collection, Processing and Analysis...N/A 3. DATES COVERED - 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Optimized Enhanced Bioremediation Through 4D Geophysical Monitoring and Autonomous Data...8 2.1.2 The Geophysical Signatures of Bioremediation ......................................... 8 2.2 PRIOR

  6. Ultrasound-enhanced bioscouring of greige cotton: regression analysis of process factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ultrasound-enhanced bioscouring process factors for greige cotton fabric are examined using custom experimental design utilizing statistical principles. An equation is presented which predicts bioscouring performance based upon percent reflectance values obtained from UV-Vis measurements of rutheniu...

  7. Enhancement of surface integrity of titanium alloy with copper by means of laser metal deposition process

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Erinosho, MF

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The laser metal deposition process possesses the combination of metallic powder and laser beam respectively. However, these combinations create an adhesive bonding that permanently solidifies the laser-enhanced-deposited powders. Titanium alloys (Ti...

  8. Geochemical Proxies for Enhanced Process Control of Underground Coal Gasification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronimus, A.; Koenen, M.; David, P.; Veld, H.; van Dijk, A.; van Bergen, F.

    2009-04-01

    Underground coal gasification (UCG) represents a strategy targeting at syngas production for fuel or power generation from in-situ coal seams. It is a promising technique for exploiting coal deposits as an energy source at locations not allowing conventional mining under economic conditions. Although the underlying concept has already been suggested in 1868 and has been later on implemented in a number of field trials and even at a commercial scale, UCG is still facing technological barriers, impeding its widespread application. Field UCG operations rely on injection wells enabling the ignition of the target seam and the supply with oxidants (air, O2) inducing combustion (oxidative conditions). The combustion process delivers the enthalpy required for endothermic hydrogen production under reduction prone conditions in some distance to the injection point. The produced hydrogen - usually accompanied by organic and inorganic carbon species, e.g. CH4, CO, and CO2 - can then be retrieved through a production well. In contrast to gasification of mined coal in furnaces, it is difficult to measure the combustion temperature directly during UCG operations. It is already known that geochemical parameters such as the relative production gas composition as well as its stable isotope signature are related to the combustion temperature and, consequently, can be used as temperature proxies. However, so far the general applicability of such relations has not been proven. In order to get corresponding insights with respect to coals of significantly different rank and origin, four powdered coal samples covering maturities ranging from Ro= 0.43% (lignite) to Ro= 3.39% (anthracite) have been gasified in laboratory experiments. The combustion temperature has been varied between 350 and 900 ˚ C, respectively. During gasification, the generated gas has been captured in a cryo-trap, dried and the carbon containing gas components have been catalytically oxidized to CO2. Thereafter, the

  9. Bias-enhanced post-treatment process for enhancing the electron field emission properties of ultrananocrystalline diamond films

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saravanan, A.; Huang, B. R.; Sankaran, K. J.; Dong, C. L.; Tai, N. H.; Lin, I. N.

    2015-03-01

    The electron field emission (EFE) properties of ultrananocrystalline diamond films were markedly improved via the bias-enhanced plasma post-treatment (bep) process. The bep-process induced the formation of hybrid-granular structure of the diamond (bep-HiD) films with abundant nano-graphitic phase along the grain boundaries that increased the conductivity of the films. Moreover, the utilization of Au-interlayer can effectively suppress the formation of resistive amorphous-carbon (a-C) layer, thereby enhancing the transport of electrons crossing the diamond-to-Si interface. Therefore, bep-HiD/Au/Si films exhibit superior EFE properties with low turn-on field of E0 = 2.6 V/μm and large EFE current density of Je = 3.2 mA/cm2 (at 5.3 V/μm).

  10. Low Temperature Synthesis of Metal Oxides by a Supercritical Seed Enhanced Crystallization (SSEC) Process

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Henrik; Brummerstedt Iversen, Steen; Joensen, Karsten Dan

    2006-01-01

    A novel method for producing crystalline nanosized metal oxides by a Supercritical Seed Enhanced Crystallization (SSEC) Process has been developed. The process is a modified sol-gel process taking place at temperatures as low as 95 ºC with supercritical CO2 as solvent and polypropylene as seeding....... The crystallinity can be controlled by changing the heating rate of the initial formation of the nanoparticles and the morphology can be altered by changing the process time....

  11. Prototype of an energy enhancer for mask based laser materials processing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bastue, Jens; Olsen, Flemmming Ove

    1997-01-01

    In general mask based laser material processing (MBLMP) is a process which suffers from a low energy efficiency, because the majority of the laser light is absorbed in or reflected by the mask. We have developed a device called an energy enhancer which is capable of improving the energy efficiency...

  12. Modeling shear failure and permeability enhancement due to coupled Thermal-Hydrological-Mechanical processes in Enhanced Geothermal Reservoirs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelkar, Sharad [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2011-01-01

    The connectivity and accessible surface area of flowing fractures, whether natural or man-made, is possibly the single most important factor, after temperature, which determines the feasibility of an Enhanced Geothermal System (EGS). Rock deformation and in-situ stress changes induced by injected fluids can lead to shear failure on preexisting fractures which can generate microseismic events, and also enhance the permeability and accessible surface area of the geothermal formation. Hence, the ability to accurately model the coupled thermal-hydrologic-mechanical (THM) processes in fractured geological formations is critical in effective EGS reservoir development and management strategies. The locations of the microseismic events can serve as indicators of the zones of enhanced permeability, thus providing vital information for verification of the coupled THM models. We will describe a general purpose computational code, FEHM, developed for this purpose, that models coupled THM processes during multiphase fluid flow and transport in fractured porous media. The code incorporates several models of fracture aperture and stress behavior combined with permeability relationships. We provide field scale examples of applications to geothermal systems to demonstrate the utility of the method.

  13. Isoprenaline enhances local Ca2+ release in cardiac myocytes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jian-xin SHEN

    2006-01-01

    Aim: Contraction of cardiac myocytes is controlled by the generation and amplification of intracellular Ca2+ signals. The key step of this process is the coupling between sarcolemma L-type Ca2+ channels (LCCs) and ryanodine receptors (RyRs) in the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR). β-Adrenergic stimulation is an important regulatory mechanism for this coupling process. But the details underlied the global level, which require local Ca2+ release study are still unclear. The present study is to explore the effects of β-adrenergic stimulation on local Ca2+ release. Methods: Using confocal microscopy combined with loose-seal patch-clamp approaches, effects of isoprenaline (1 μmol·L-1), a β-adrenergic agonist, on local SR Ca2+ release triggered by Ca2+ influx through LCCs in intact rat cardiac myocytes were investigated. Results: Isoprenaline increased the intensity of ensemble averaged local Ca2+ transients, the peak of which displayed a typical bell-shaped voltage-dependence over the membrane voltages ranging from ~-40mV to ~+35mV. Further analysis showed that this enhancement could be explained by the increased coupling fidelity (which refers the increased probability of RyRs activation upon depolarization), and the increased amplitude of evoked Ca2+ sparks (due to more Ca2+ releases through local RyRs). In addition, isoprenaline decreased the first latency, which displayed a typical "U"-shaped voltage-dependence, showing the available acceleration and synchronization of β-adrenergic stimulation on intracellular calcium release. Conclusions: Isoprenaline enhances local Ca2+ release in cardiac myocytes. These results underscore the importance of regulation of β-adrenergic stimulation on local intermolecular signals between LCCs and RyRs in heart cells.

  14. Process Ontology Specification for Enhancing the Process Compliance of a Measurement and Evaluation Strategy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pablo Becker

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we specify a generic ontology for the process domain considering the related state-of-the-art research literature. As a result, the recently built process ontology contributes to enrich semantically the terms for the (previously developed measurement and evaluation domain ontology by means of stereotypes. One of the underlying hypothesis in this research is that the generic ontology for process can be seen as a reusable artifact which can be used to enrich semantically not only the measurement and evaluation domain ontology but also to other domains involved in different organizational endeavors. For instance, for the measurement domain, now is explicit that the measurement term has the semantic of task, the measure term has the meaning of outcome, and the metric term has the semantic of method, from the process terminological base standpoint. The augmented conceptual framework, i.e. measurement and evaluation concepts plus process concepts, has also a positive impact on the GOCAME (Goal-Oriented Context-Aware Measurement and Evaluation strategy capabilities since ensures terminological uniformity, consistency and verifiability to its process and method specifications. In order to illustrate how the augmented conceptual framework impacts on the verifiability of GOCAME process and method specifications in addition to the consistency and comparability of results in measurement and evaluation projects, an ICT (Information and Communications Technology security and risk evaluation case study is used.

  15. Enhanced nutrient removal in three types of step feeding process from municipal wastewater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Yongzhen; Ge, Shijian

    2011-06-01

    An anoxic/oxic step feeding process was improved to enhance nutrient removal by reconfiguring the process into (1) anaerobic/anoxic/oxic step feeding process or (2) modified University of Capetown (UCT) step feeding process. Enhanced nitrogen and phosphorus removal and optimized organics utilization were obtained simultaneously in the modified UCT type with both internal and sludge recycle ratios of 75% as well as anaerobic/anoxic/oxic volume ratio of 1:3:6. Specifically, the UCT configuration and optimized operational conditions lead to the enrichment of denitrifying phosphorus removal microorganisms and achieved improved anaerobic P-release and anoxic P-uptake activities, which were beneficial to the denitrifying phosphorus removal activities and removal efficiencies. Due to high mixed liquor suspended solid and uneven distributed dissolved oxygen, 35% of total nitrogen was eliminated through simultaneous nitrification and denitrification process in aerobic zones. Moreover, 62 ± 6% of influent chemical oxygen demands was involved in the denitrification or phosphorus release processes.

  16. [Investigation of team processes that enhance team performance in business organization].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawata, Kengo; Yamaguchi, Hiroyuki; Hatano, Toru; Aoshima, Mika

    2015-02-01

    Many researchers have suggested team processes that enhance team performance. However, past team process models were based on crew team, whose all team members perform an indivisible temporary task. These models may be inapplicable business teams, whose individual members perform middle- and long-term tasks assigned to individual members. This study modified the teamwork model of Dickinson and McIntyre (1997) and aimed to demonstrate a whole team process that enhances the performance of business teams. We surveyed five companies (member N = 1,400, team N = 161) and investigated team-level-processes. Results showed that there were two sides of team processes: "communication" and "collaboration to achieve a goal." Team processes in which communication enhanced collaboration improved team performance with regard to all aspects of the quantitative objective index (e.g., current income and number of sales), supervisor rating, and self-rating measurements. On the basis of these results, we discuss the entire process by which teamwork enhances team performance in business organizations.

  17. Trait absorption is related to enhanced emotional picture processing and reduced processing of secondary acoustic probes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benning, Stephen D; Rozalski, Vincent; Klingspon, Kara L

    2015-10-01

    Trait absorption reflects a propensity to have one's attention drawn to engaging sensory or imaginal experiences. It is related to self-reported levels of positive and negative emotionality, but little work has examined whether absorption is related to greater levels of basic emotional processing. We used the late positive potential (LPP) to pictures and P3 response to subsequent startle probes during those pictures to examine how absorption was related to initial emotional processing and reactivity to a second stimulus. Across genders, absorption was positively related to LPP amplitude to emotional versus neutral pictures at PZ, and it was negatively related to overall P3 amplitude to startle probes at FZ. Thus, absorption appears to index greater processing of emotional material at the cost of reduced processing of subsequent incoming stimuli.

  18. Potentiation of prolactin secretion following lactotrope escape from dopamine action. II. Phosphorylation of the alpha(1) subunit of L-type, voltage-dependent calcium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández, M E; del Mar Hernández, M; Díaz-Muñoz, M; Clapp, C; de la Escalera, G M

    1999-07-01

    Modulation of Ca(2+) channels has been shown to alter cellular functions. It can play an important role in the amplification of signals in the endocrine system, including the pleiotropically regulated pituitary lactotropes. Prolactin (PRL) secretion is tonically inhibited by dopamine (DA), the escape from which triggers acute episodes of hormone secretion. The magnitude of these episodes is explained by a potentiation of the PRL-releasing action of secretagogues such as thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH). While the mechanisms of this potentiation are not fully understood, it is known to be mimicked by the dihydropyridine, L-type Ca(2+) channel agonist Bay K 8644 and blocked by nifedipine and methoxyverapamil. The potentiation is also blocked by inhibitors of cyclic AMP-dependent protein kinase and protein kinase C. We recently described that the escape from tonic actions of DA results in increased macroscopic Ca(2+) currents in GH(4)C(1) lactotropic clonal cells transfected with a cDNA encoding the long form of the human D(2)-DA receptor. Here we show that the withdrawal from DA potentiates the PRL-releasing action of TRH in GH(4)C(1)/D(2)-DAR cells to the same extent as in enriched lactotropes in primary culture. In both experimental models a low density of dihydropyridine receptors was shown by (+)-[(3)H]PN200-110 binding. Photoaffinity labelling with the dihydropyridine [(3)H]azidopine revealed a protein consistent with the alpha(1) subunit of L-type Ca(2+) channels of 165-170 kDa. In both experimental models, the facilitation of TRH action triggered by the escape from DA was correlated with an enhanced rate of phosphorylation of this putative alpha(1) subunit, the nature of which was further supported by immunoprecipitation with selective antibodies directed against the alpha(1C) and alpha(1D) subunit of voltage-gated calcium channels. We propose that PKA- and PKC-dependent phosphorylation of the alpha(1) subunit of high voltage activated, L-type Ca(2

  19. Voltage-dependent BK and Hv1 channels expressed in non-excitable tissues: New therapeutics opportunities as targets in human diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morera, Francisco J; Saravia, Julia; Pontigo, Juan Pablo; Vargas-Chacoff, Luis; Contreras, Gustavo F; Pupo, Amaury; Lorenzo, Yenisleidy; Castillo, Karen; Tilegenova, Cholpon; Cuello, Luis G; Gonzalez, Carlos

    2015-11-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels are the molecular determinants of cellular excitability. This group of ion channels is one of the most important pharmacological targets in excitable tissues such as nervous system, cardiac and skeletal muscle. Moreover, voltage-gated ion channels are expressed in non-excitable cells, where they mediate key cellular functions through intracellular biochemical mechanisms rather than rapid electrical signaling. This review aims at illustrating the pharmacological impact of these ion channels, highlighting in particular the structural details and physiological functions of two of them - the high conductance voltage- and Ca(2+)-gated K(+) (BK) channels and voltage-gated proton (Hv1) channels- in non-excitable cells. BK channels have been implicated in a variety of physiological processes ranging from regulation of smooth muscle tone to modulation of hormone and neurotransmitter release. Interestingly, BK channels are also involved in modulating K(+) transport in the mammalian kidney and colon epithelium with a potential role in the hyperkalemic phenotype observed in patients with familial hyperkalemic hypertension type 2, and in the pathophysiology of hypertension. In addition, BK channels are responsible for resting and stimulated Ca(2+)-activated K(+) secretion in the distal colon. Hv1 channels have been detected in many cell types, including macrophages, blood cells, lung epithelia, skeletal muscle and microglia. These channels have a central role in the phagocytic system. In macrophages, Hv1 channels participate in the generation of reactive oxygen species in the respiratory burst during the process of phagocytosis. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. A Linearity-Enhanced Time-Domain CMOS Thermostat with Process-Variation Calibration

    OpenAIRE

    Chun-Chi Chen; Yi Lin

    2014-01-01

    This study proposes a linearity-enhanced time-domain complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) thermostat with process-variation calibration for improving the accuracy, expanding the operating temperature range, and reducing test costs. For sensing temperatures in the time domain, the large characteristic curve of a CMOS inverter markedly affects the accuracy, particularly when the operating temperature range is increased. To enhance the on-chip linearity, this study proposes a novel tem...

  1. Enhanced Down-Stream Processing of Biobutanol in the ABE Fermentation Process

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bîldea, Costin Sorin; Patraşcu, Iulian; Segovia Hernandez, J. G.; Kiss, Anton A.; Kravanja, Zdravko; Bogataj, Miloš

    2016-01-01

    Butanol is considered a superior biofuel, as it is more energy dense and less hygroscopic than bioethanol, resulting in higher possible blending ratios with gasoline. However, the production cost of the acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE) fermentation process is high, mainly due to the low butanol titer,

  2. The Hamburg/ESO R-process Enhanced Star survey (HERES) X. HE 2252-4225, one more r-process enhanced and actinide-boost halo star

    CERN Document Server

    Mashonkina, L; Eriksson, K

    2014-01-01

    We report on a detailed abundance analysis of the r-process enhanced giant star, HE 2252-4225 ([Fe/H] = -2.63, [r/Fe] = 0.80). Determination of stellar parameters and element abundances was based on analysis of high-quality VLT/UVES spectra. The surface gravity was calculated from the NLTE ionisation balance between Fe I and Fe II. Accurate abundances were determined for a total of 38 elements, including 22 neutron-capture elements beyond Sr and up to Th. This object is deficient in carbon, as expected for a giant star with Teff < 4800 K. The stellar Na-Zn abundances are well fitted by the yields of a single supernova of 14.4 Msun. For the neutron-capture elements in the Sr-Ru, Ba-Yb, and Os-Ir regions, the abundance pattern of HE 2252-4225 is in excellent agreement with the average abundance pattern of the strongly r-process enhanced stars CS 22892-052, CS 31082-001, HE 1219-0312, and HE 1523-091. This suggests a common origin of the first, second, and third r-process peak elements in HE 2252-4225 in the ...

  3. Advanced process monitoring and feedback control to enhance cell culture process production and robustness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, An; Tsang, Valerie Liu; Moore, Brandon; Shen, Vivian; Huang, Yao-Ming; Kshirsagar, Rashmi; Ryll, Thomas

    2015-12-01

    It is a common practice in biotherapeutic manufacturing to define a fixed-volume feed strategy for nutrient feeds, based on historical cell demand. However, once the feed volumes are defined, they are inflexible to batch-to-batch variations in cell growth and physiology and can lead to inconsistent productivity and product quality. In an effort to control critical quality attributes and to apply process analytical technology (PAT), a fully automated cell culture feedback control system has been explored in three different applications. The first study illustrates that frequent monitoring and automatically controlling the complex feed based on a surrogate (glutamate) level improved protein production. More importantly, the resulting feed strategy was translated into a manufacturing-friendly manual feed strategy without impact on product quality. The second study demonstrates the improved process robustness of an automated feed strategy based on online bio-capacitance measurements for cell growth. In the third study, glucose and lactate concentrations were measured online and were used to automatically control the glucose feed, which in turn changed lactate metabolism. These studies suggest that the auto-feedback control system has the potential to significantly increase productivity and improve robustness in manufacturing, with the goal of ensuring process performance and product quality consistency.

  4. Neuroplasticity as a double-edged sword: deaf enhancements and dyslexic deficits in motion processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Courtney; Neville, Helen

    2006-05-01

    We examined the hypothesis that aspects of processing that are most modifiable by experience (i.e., "plastic") display the most vulnerability in developmental disorders and the most compensatory enhancement after sensory deprivation. A large literature reports that motion processing and magnocellular visual function is selectively deficient in dyslexia. A smaller literature reports enhancements in such functions in deaf individuals. However, studies with dyslexic and deaf individuals have used different experimental paradigms to assess visual function, and no research has yet examined both sides of modifiability (i.e., enhancements and deficits) using the same experimental paradigm. In the present research, visual function was compared in dyslexic (n=15), deaf (n=17), and control adults by using automated peripheral kinetic and foveal static perimetry. In the kinetic perimetry task, the dyslexic group showed deficits ( pdeaf group showed enhancements ( pdeaf ( p=.632) group differed significantly from controls in foveal contrast sensitivity thresholds, and no group or individual approached ceiling performance on this task. Taken together, the present data bridge previous literatures and suggest that motion processing tasks are selectively modifiable, either to decrement or enhancement, whereas foveal contrast sensitivity does not differ in dyslexic or deaf groups.

  5. Tanks Focus Area retrieval process development and enhancements FY96 technology development summary report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rinker, M.W.; Bamberger, J.A.; Hatchell, B.K. [and others

    1996-09-01

    The Retrieval Process Development and Enhancements (RPD&E) activities are part of the Retrieval and Closure Program of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) EM-50 Tanks Focus Area. The purposes of RPD&E are to understand retrieval processes, including emerging and existing technologies, and to gather data on those processes, so that end users have the requisite technical basis to make retrieval decisions. Work has been initiated to support the need for multiple retrieval technologies across the DOE complex. Technologies addressed during FY96 focused on enhancements to sluicing, borehole mining, confined sluicing retrieval end effectors, the lightweight scarifier, and pulsed air mixing. Furthermore, a decision tool and database have been initiated to link retrieval processes with tank closure to assist end users in making retrieval decisions.

  6. Coal-oxygen process provides CO/sub 2/ for enhanced recovery

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abraham, B.M.

    1982-03-15

    Carbon dioxide for use in enhanced oil recovery could be produced by electric power plants which burn coal in an O/SUB/2/CO/SUB/2 mixture. The process appears to be competitive with the monoethanol amine and hot potassium carbonate methods of CO/SUB/2 recovery from flue gases.

  7. Computer Games Development Experience and Appreciative Learning Approach for Creative Process Enhancement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leng, Eow Yee; Ali, Wan Zah bte Wan; Mahmud, Rosnaini bt.; Baki, Roselan

    2010-01-01

    Nurturing children into thinking creatively needs to take account of what interest them. Therefore, the study conducted engaged students with computer games development as it corresponded with the young generation's habits and interests. This was done with the purpose to enhance the creative process experienced by students. It involved 69…

  8. Twitter for Teaching: Can Social Media Be Used to Enhance the Process of Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Can social media be used to enhance the process of learning by students in higher education? Social media have become widely adopted by students in their personal lives. However, the application of social media to teaching and learning remains to be fully explored. In this study, the use of the social media tool Twitter for teaching was…

  9. MISC-MUSIC: A Music Program to Enhance Cognitive Processing among Children with Learning Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portowitz, Adena; Klein, Pnina S.

    2007-01-01

    Research findings confirm positive links between music education, scholastic achievement, and social adaptability, especially among at-risk and special needs children. However, few studies explain how this process occurs. This article presents a didactic approach, which suggests practical ways of enhancing general learning skills while teaching…

  10. MISC-MUSIC: A Music Program to Enhance Cognitive Processing among Children with Learning Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Portowitz, Adena; Klein, Pnina S.

    2007-01-01

    Research findings confirm positive links between music education, scholastic achievement, and social adaptability, especially among at-risk and special needs children. However, few studies explain how this process occurs. This article presents a didactic approach, which suggests practical ways of enhancing general learning skills while teaching…

  11. Mine detection using SF-GPR: A signal processing approach for resolution enhancement and clutter reduction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Karlsen, Brian; Jakobsen, Kaj Bjarne; Larsen, Jan;

    2001-01-01

    Proper clutter reduction is essential for Ground Penetrating Radar data since low signal-to-clutter ratio prevent correct detection of mine objects. A signal processing approach for resolution enhancement and clutter reduction used on Stepped-Frequency Ground Penetrating Radar (SF-GPR) data is pr...

  12. Enhanced Versus Conventional Sludge Anaerobic Processes: Performances and Techno-Economic Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gianico, Andrea; Bertanza, Giorgio; Braguglia, Camilla M; Canato, Matteo; Gallipoli, Agata; Laera, Giuseppe; Levantesi, Caterina; Mininni, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Sewage sludge processing is a key issue in water resource recovery facilities due to the inefficacy of conventional treatments to produce high quality biosolids to be safely used in agriculture. Under this framework, the performances of several enhanced stabilization processes, namely ultrasound-pretreated Mesophilic Anaerobic Digestion (US+MAD), thermophilic anaerobic digestion (TAD), thermal-pretreated TAD (TH+TAD) and ultrasound-pretreated inverse Temperature Phased Anaerobic Digestion (US+iTPAD) have been investigated. Such enhanced processes resulted in higher biogas yields and higher destruction of pathogens with respect to conventional MAD process, thus suggesting their feasibility in full-scale implementation perspectives. A procedure for technical-economic comparison of new sludge processing lines against conventional ones (benchmarking) was developed, based on the definition of technical issues (e.g. reliability, complexity, etc.) which are rated for each situation. Moreover, capital and operating costs were estimated. The enhanced processes analyzed in this work showed some potentially critical items, mainly related to energy balance and reagent consumption.

  13. Alternate pulses of ultrasound and electricity enhanced electrochemical process for p-nitrophenol degradation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Fengchun; Xu, Yun; Xia, Kunyuan; Jia, Caixia; Zhang, Pin

    2016-01-01

    A novel alternated ultrasonic and electric pulse enhanced electrochemical process was developed and used for investigating its effectiveness on the degradation of p-nitrophenol (PNP) in an aqueous solution. The impacts of pulse mode, pH, cell voltage, supporting electrolyte concentration, ultrasonic power and the initial concentration of PNP on the performance of PNP degradation were evaluated. Possible pathway of PNP degradation in this system was proposed based on the intermediates identified by GC-MS. Experimental results showed that 94.1% of PNP could be removed at 2h in the dual-pulse ultrasound enhanced electrochemical (dual-pulse US-EC) process at mild operating conditions (i.e., pulse mode of electrochemical pulse time (TEC)=50 ms and ultrasonic pulse time (T US)=100 ms, initial pH of 3.0, cell voltage of 10 V, Na2SO4 concentration of 0.05 M, ultrasonic powder of 48.8 W and initial concentration of PNP of 100mg/L), compared with 89.0%, 58.9%, 2.4% in simultaneous ultrasound enhanced electrochemical (US-EC) process, pulsed electrochemical (EC) process and pulsed ultrasound (US), respectively. Moreover, energy used in the dual-pulse US-EC process was reduced by 50.4% as compared to the US-EC process. The degradation of PNP in the pulsed EC process, US-EC process and dual-pulse process followed pseudo-first-order kinetics. Therefore, the dual-pulse US-EC process was found to be a more effective technique for the degradation of PNP and would have a promising application in wastewater treatment.

  14. Phasic alertness enhances processing of face and non-face stimuli in congenital prosopagnosia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanzer, Michal; Weinbach, Noam; Mardo, Elite; Henik, Avishai; Avidan, Galia

    2016-08-01

    Congenital prosopagnosia (CP) is a severe face processing impairment that occurs in the absence of any obvious brain damage and has often been associated with a more general deficit in deriving holistic relations between facial features or even between non-face shape dimensions. Here we further characterized this deficit and examined a potential way to ameliorate it. To this end we manipulated phasic alertness using alerting cues previously shown to modulate attention and enhance global processing of visual stimuli in normal observers. Specifically, we first examined whether individuals with CP, similarly to controls, would show greater global processing when exposed to an alerting cue in the context of a non-facial task (Navon global/local task). We then explored the effect of an alerting cue on face processing (upright/inverted face discrimination). Confirming previous findings, in the absence of alerting cues, controls showed a typical global bias in the Navon task and an inversion effect indexing holistic processing in the upright/inverted task, while CP failed to show these effects. Critically, when alerting cues preceded the experimental trials, both groups showed enhanced global interference and a larger inversion effect. These results suggest that phasic alertness may modulate visual processing and consequently, affect global/holistic perception. Hence, these findings further reinforce the notion that global/holistic processing may serve as a possible mechanism underlying the face processing deficit in CP. Moreover, they imply a possible route for enhancing face processing in individuals with CP and thus shed new light on potential amelioration of this disorder.

  15. Supporting technology for enhanced oil recovery: Sixth amendment and extension to Annex IV enhanced oil recovery thermal processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reid, T.B. (USDOE Bartlesville Project Office, OK (United States)); Rivas, O. (INTEVEP, Filial de Petroleos de Venezuela, SA, Caracas (Venezuela))

    1991-10-01

    This report contains the results of efforts under the six tasks of the Sixth Amendment and Extension of Annex 4, Enhanced Oil Recovery Thermal Processes of the Venezuela/USA Agreement. The report is presented in sections (for each of the 6 tasks) and each section contains one or more reports prepared by various individuals or groups describing the results of efforts under each of the tasks. A statement of each task, taken from the agreement, is presented on the first page of each section. The tasks are numbered 44 through 49. Tasks are: DOE-SUPRI-laboratory research on steam foam, CAT-SCAN, and in-situ combustion; INTEVEP-laboratory research and field projects on steam foam; DOE-NIPER-laboratory research and field projects light oil steam flooding; INTEVEP-laboratory research and field studies on wellbore heat losses; DOE-LLNL-laboratory research and field projects on electromagnetic induction tomography; INTEVEP-laoboratory research on mechanistic studies.

  16. Prior perceptual processing enhances the effect of emotional arousal on the neural correlates of memory retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dew, Ilana T Z; Ritchey, Maureen; LaBar, Kevin S; Cabeza, Roberto

    2014-07-01

    A fundamental idea in memory research is that items are more likely to be remembered if encoded with a semantic, rather than perceptual, processing strategy. Interestingly, this effect has been shown to reverse for emotionally arousing materials, such that perceptual processing enhances memory for emotional information or events. The current fMRI study investigated the neural mechanisms of this effect by testing how neural activations during emotional memory retrieval are influenced by the prior encoding strategy. Participants incidentally encoded emotional and neutral pictures under instructions to attend to either semantic or perceptual properties of each picture. Recognition memory was tested 2 days later. fMRI analyses yielded three main findings. First, right amygdalar activity associated with emotional memory strength was enhanced by prior perceptual processing. Second, prior perceptual processing of emotional pictures produced a stronger effect on recollection- than familiarity-related activations in the right amygdala and left hippocampus. Finally, prior perceptual processing enhanced amygdalar connectivity with regions strongly associated with retrieval success, including hippocampal/parahippocampal regions, visual cortex, and ventral parietal cortex. Taken together, the results specify how encoding orientations yield alterations in brain systems that retrieve emotional memories.

  17. Enhanced surface patterning of chalcogenide glass via imprinting process using a buffer layer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Byeong Kyou; Choi, Duk-Yong; Chung, Woon Jin; Choi, Yong Gyu

    2017-09-01

    In an effort to enhance transcriptability of quasi-three-dimensional patterns present in silicon stamp onto the surface of 'bulk' chalcogenide glass, a buffer layer was introduced during the replication process via imprinting. Dissimilar patterns with diverse depths along the surface normal direction were imprinted with or without the buffer layer, and the resulting patterns on the glass surface were compared with regard to the transcription quality in both the lateral and vertical directions. After assessing the processing conditions appropriate for imprinting bulk As2S3 glass especially in terms of temperature and duration, candidate materials suitable for the buffer layer were screened: Commercially available polydimethylsiloxane was then chosen, and impact of this buffer layer was elucidated. The imprinted patterns turned out to become more uniform over large surface areas when the buffer layer was inserted. This finding confirmed that the use of buffer layer conspicuously enhanced the transcriptability of imprinting process for bulk chalcogenide glass.

  18. Enhanced performance of wearable piezoelectric nanogenerator fabricated by two-step hydrothermal process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Qiu, Yu; Lei, Jixue; Yin, Bing; Zhang, Heqiu; Ji, Jiuyu; Hu, Lizhong, E-mail: lizhongh@dlut.edu.cn [School of Physics and Optoelectronic Technology, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024 (China); The Key Laboratory for Micro/Nano Technology and System of Liaoning Province, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024 (China); Yang, Dechao [Department of Electronic Engineering, Dalian Neusoft University of Information, Dalian 116024 (China); Bian, Jiming; Liu, Yanhong; Zhao, Yu; Luo, Yingmin [School of Physics and Optoelectronic Technology, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024 (China)

    2014-03-17

    A simple two-step hydrothermal process was proposed for enhancing the performance of the nanogenerator on flexible and wearable terylene-fabric substrate. With this method, a significant enhancement in output voltage of the nanogenerator from ∼10 mV to 7 V was achieved, comparing with the one by conventional one-step process. In addition, another advantage with the devices synthesized by two-step hydrothermal process was that their output voltages are only sensitive to strain rather than strain rate. The devices with a high output voltage have the ability to power common electric devices and will have important applications in flexible electronics and wearable devices.

  19. Accuracy, security, and processing time comparisons of biometric fingerprint recognition system using digital and optical enhancements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alsharif, Salim; El-Saba, Aed; Jagapathi, Rajendarreddy

    2011-06-01

    Fingerprint recognition is one of the most commonly used forms of biometrics and has been widely used in daily life due to its feasibility, distinctiveness, permanence, accuracy, reliability, and acceptability. Besides cost, issues related to accuracy, security, and processing time in practical biometric recognition systems represent the most critical factors that makes these systems widely acceptable. Accurate and secure biometric systems often require sophisticated enhancement and encoding techniques that burdens the overall processing time of the system. In this paper we present a comparison between common digital and optical enhancementencoding techniques with respect to their accuracy, security and processing time, when applied to biometric fingerprint systems.

  20. Genotypic to expression profiling of bovine calcium channel, voltage-dependent, alpha-2/delta subunit 1 gene, and their association with bovine mastitis among Frieswal (HFX Sahiwal) crossbred cattle of Indian origin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deb, Rajib; Singh, Umesh; Kumar, Sushil; Kumar, Arun; Singh, Rani; Sengar, Gyanendra; Mann, Sandeep; Sharma, Arjava

    2014-04-01

    Calcium channel, voltage-dependent, alpha-2/delta subunit 1 (CACNA2D1) gene is considered to be an important noncytokine candidate gene influencing mastitis. Scanty of reports are available until today regarding the role play of CACNA2D1 gene on the susceptibility of bovine mastitis. We interrogated the CACNA2D1 G519663A [A>G] SNP by PCR-RFLP among two hundreds Frieswal (HF X Sahiwal) crossbred cattle of Indian origin. Genotypic frequency of AA (51.5, n=101) was comparatively higher than AG (35, n=70) and GG (14.5, n=29). Association of Somatic cell score (SCS) with genotypes revealed that, GG genotypes showing lesser count (less susceptible to mastitis) compare to AA and AG. Relative expression of CACNA2D1 transcript (in milk samples) was significantly higher among GG than AG and AA. Further we have also isolated blood sample from the all groups and PBMCs were cultured from each blood sample as per the standard protocol. They were treated with Calcium channel blocker and the expression level of the CACNA2D1 gene was evaluated by Real Time PCR. Results show that expression level decline in each genotypic group after treatment and expression level of GG are again significantly higher than AA and AG. Thus, it may be concluded that GG genotypic animals are favorable for selecting disease resistant breeds.

  1. Frequency and voltage dependence of electric and dielectric properties of Au/TiO2/n-4H-SiC (metal-insulator-semiconductor) type Schottky barrier diodes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanrıkulu, E. E.; Yıldız, D. E.; Günen, A.; Altındal, Ş.

    2015-09-01

    The main electrical and dielectric properties of Au/TiO2/n-4H-SiC (MIS) type Schottky barrier diodes (SBDs) have been investigated as functions of frequency and applied bias voltage. We believe that the use of high dielectric interfacial layer between metal and semiconductor can improve the performance of Schottky diodes. From the experimental data, both electrical and dielectric parameters were found as strong function of frequency and applied bias voltage. The Fermi energy level (EF), the concentration of doping donor atoms (P), barrier height (ΦB) and series resistance (Rs) values were obtained from reverse and forward bias C-V characteristics. The changes in EF and ND with frequency are considerably low. Therefore, their values were taken at about constant. The real and imaginary parts of dielectric constant (\\varepsilon \\prime , \\varepsilon \\prime\\prime ), tangent loss (tanδ), ac electrical conductivity (σac), and real and imaginary parts of electric modulus (M‧ and M″) values were also obtained from reverse and forward bias C-V and G/ω-V characteristics. In addition, the voltage dependent profiles of all these electrical and dielectric parameters were drawn for each frequency. These results confirmed that both electrical and dielectric properties of Au/TiO2/n-4H-SiC (MIS) type SBD are quite sensitive to both the frequency and applied bias voltage due to surface polarization, density distribution of interface traps (Dit), and interfacial layer.

  2. Enhanced visuomotor processing of phobic images in blood-injury-injection fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haberkamp, Anke; Schmidt, Thomas

    2014-04-01

    Numerous studies have identified attentional biases and processing enhancements for fear-relevant stimuli in individuals with specific phobias. However, this has not been conclusively shown in blood-injury-injection (BII) phobia, which has rarely been investigated even though it has features distinct from all other specific phobias. The present study aims to fill that gap and compares the time-course of visuomotor processing of phobic stimuli (i.e., pictures of small injuries) in BII-fearful (n=19) and non-anxious control participants (n=23) by using a response priming paradigm. In BII-fearful participants, phobic stimuli produced larger priming effects and lower response times compared to neutral stimuli, whereas non-anxious control participants showed no such differences. Because these effects are fully present in the fastest responses, they indicate an enhancement in early visuomotor processing of injury pictures in BII-fearful participants. These results are comparable to the enhanced processing of phobic stimuli in other specific phobias (i.e., spider phobia). Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. EM-50 Tanks Focus Area retrieval process development and enhancements. FY97 technology development summary report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rinker, M.W.; Bamberger, J.A. [Pacific Northwest National Lab., Richland, WA (United States); Alberts, D.G. [Waterjet Technology, Inc., Kent, WA (United States)] [and others

    1997-09-01

    The Retrieval Process Development and Enhancements (RPD and E) activities are part of the US Department of Energy (DOE) EM-50 Tanks Focus Area, Retrieval and Closure program. The purpose of RPD and E is to understand retrieval processes, including emerging and existing technologies, and to gather data on these processes, so that end users have requisite technical bases to make retrieval decisions. Technologies addressed during FY97 include enhancements to sluicing, the use of pulsed air to assist mixing, mixer pumps, innovative mixing techniques, confined sluicing retrieval end effectors, borehole mining, light weight scarification, and testing of Russian-developed retrieval equipment. Furthermore, the Retrieval Analysis Tool was initiated to link retrieval processes with tank waste farms and tank geometric to assist end users by providing a consolidation of data and technical information that can be easily assessed. The main technical accomplishments are summarized under the following headings: Oak Ridge site-gunite and associated tanks treatability study; pulsed air mixing; Oak Ridge site-Old Hydrofracture Facility; hydraulic testbed relocation; cooling coil cleaning end effector; light weight scarifier; innovative tank mixing; advanced design mixer pump; enhanced sluicing; Russian retrieval equipment testing; retrieval data analysis and correlation; simulant development; and retrieval analysis tool (RAT).

  4. Fabricating an enhanced stable superhydrophobic surface on copper plates by introducing a sintering process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Jinyi; Yuan, Wei; Yan, Zhiguo; Zhou, Bo; Tang, Yong; Li, Zongtao

    2015-11-01

    The superhydrophobic surface has the potential for use in functional applications. This study reports a novel method for coupling a sintering process with a traditional technique based on the solution-immersion method to prepare a stable superhydrophobic surface. The use of a sintering process aids in the enhancement of the adhesive strength and acid resistance of the surface structure. The advantage of using this method lies in its flexibility in regulating the processing parameters and functional behaviours. The influences of different processing parameters were experimentally investigated. The surface treated with a sintering process remains superhydrophobic with a contact angle of >150° after immersion in an acid solution for 120 h. The sintered surface maintains good integrity after experiencing ultrasonic vibration for 5 min. The results indicate that the sintering temperature must be optimized to increase the adhesive strength and maintain sufficient hydrophobicity. The modification time is an important factor related to the level of hydrophobicity.

  5. Resonance-enhanced multiphoton ionization mass spectrometry (REMPI-MS): applications for process analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Streibel, Thorsten; Zimmermann, Ralf

    2014-01-01

    Process analysis is an emerging discipline in analytical sciences that poses special requirements on analytical techniques, especially when conducted in an online manner. Mass spectrometric methods seem exceedingly suitable for this task, particularly if a soft ionization method is applied. Resonance-enhanced multiphoton ionization (REMPI) in combination with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOFMS) provides a selective and sensitive means for monitoring (poly)aromatic compounds in process flows. The properties of REMPI and various variations of the ionization process are presented. The potential of REMPI for process analysis is highlighted with several examples, and drawbacks of the method are also noted. Applications of REMPI-TOFMS for the detection and monitoring of aromatic species in a large variety of combustion processes comprising flames, vehicle exhaust, and incinerators are discussed. New trends in technical development and combination with other analytical methods are brought forward.

  6. Nonlinear enhancement in photonic crystal slow light waveguides fabricated using CMOS-compatible process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shinkawa, Mizuki; Ishikura, Norihiro; Hama, Yosuke; Suzuki, Keijiro; Baba, Toshihiko

    2011-10-24

    We have studied low-dispersion slow light and its nonlinear enhancement in photonic crystal waveguides. In this work, we fabricated the waveguides using Si CMOS-compatible process. It enables us to integrate spotsize converters, which greatly simplifies the optical coupling from fibers as well as demonstration of the nonlinear enhancement. Two-photon absorption, self-phase modulation and four-wave mixing were observed clearly for picosecond pulses in a 200-μm-long device. In comparison with Si wire waveguides, a 60-120 fold higher nonlinearity was evaluated for a group index of 51. Unique intensity response also occurred due to the specific transmission spectrum and enhanced nonlinearities. Such slow light may add various functionalities in Si photonics, while loss reduction is desired for ensuring the advantage of slow light.

  7. Enhancing four-wave-mixing processes by nanowire arrays coupled to a gold film.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poutrina, Ekaterina; Ciracì, Cristian; Gauthier, Daniel J; Smith, David R

    2012-05-07

    We consider the process of four-wave mixing in an array of gold nanowires strongly coupled to a gold film. Using full-wave simulations, we perform a quantitative comparison of the four-wave mixing efficiency associated with a bare film and films with nanowire arrays. We find that the strongly localized surface plasmon resonances of the coupled nanowires provide an additional local field enhancement that, along with the delocalized surface plasmon of the film, produces an overall four-wave mixing efficiency enhancement of up to six orders of magnitude over that of the bare film. The enhancement occurs over a wide range of excitation angles. The film-coupled nanowire array is easily amenable to nanofabrication, and could find application as an ultra-compact component for integrated photonic and quantum optic systems.

  8. TESTING OF A FULL-SCALE ROTARY MICROFILTER FOR THE ENHANCED PROCESS FOR RADIONUCLIDES REMOVAL

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Herman, D; David Stefanko, D; Michael Poirier, M; Samuel Fink, S

    2009-01-01

    Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) researchers are investigating and developing a rotary microfilter for solid-liquid separation applications in the Department of Energy (DOE) complex. One application involves use in the Enhanced Processes for Radionuclide Removal (EPRR) at the Savannah River Site (SRS). To assess this application, the authors performed rotary filter testing with a full-scale, 25-disk unit manufactured by SpinTek Filtration with 0.5 micron filter media manufactured by Pall Corporation. The filter includes proprietary enhancements by SRNL. The most recent enhancement is replacement of the filter's main shaft seal with a John Crane Type 28LD gas-cooled seal. The feed material was SRS Tank 8F simulated sludge blended with monosodium titanate (MST). Testing examined total insoluble solids concentrations of 0.06 wt % (126 hours of testing) and 5 wt % (82 hours of testing). The following are conclusions from this testing.

  9. Musical intervention enhances infants' neural processing of temporal structure in music and speech.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, T Christina; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2016-05-10

    Individuals with music training in early childhood show enhanced processing of musical sounds, an effect that generalizes to speech processing. However, the conclusions drawn from previous studies are limited due to the possible confounds of predisposition and other factors affecting musicians and nonmusicians. We used a randomized design to test the effects of a laboratory-controlled music intervention on young infants' neural processing of music and speech. Nine-month-old infants were randomly assigned to music (intervention) or play (control) activities for 12 sessions. The intervention targeted temporal structure learning using triple meter in music (e.g., waltz), which is difficult for infants, and it incorporated key characteristics of typical infant music classes to maximize learning (e.g., multimodal, social, and repetitive experiences). Controls had similar multimodal, social, repetitive play, but without music. Upon completion, infants' neural processing of temporal structure was tested in both music (tones in triple meter) and speech (foreign syllable structure). Infants' neural processing was quantified by the mismatch response (MMR) measured with a traditional oddball paradigm using magnetoencephalography (MEG). The intervention group exhibited significantly larger MMRs in response to music temporal structure violations in both auditory and prefrontal cortical regions. Identical results were obtained for temporal structure changes in speech. The intervention thus enhanced temporal structure processing not only in music, but also in speech, at 9 mo of age. We argue that the intervention enhanced infants' ability to extract temporal structure information and to predict future events in time, a skill affecting both music and speech processing.

  10. Biodegradability enhancement of purified terephthalic acid wastewater by coagulation-flocculation process as pretreatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karthik, Manikavasagam; Dafale, Nishant; Pathe, Pradyumna; Nandy, Tapas

    2008-06-15

    In this work, the coagulation-flocculation process was used as pretreatment for purified terephthalic acid (PTA) wastewater with the objective of improving its overall biodegradability. PTA production generates wastewaters with toxicants p-xylene [1,4-dimethyl-benzene (C8H10)], a major raw material used in the production process, along with some of the intermediates, viz., p-toluic acid, benzoic acid, 4-carboxybenzaldehyde, phthalic acid and terephthalic acid. These compounds affect the bio-oxidation process of wastewater treatment; hence removal of these constituents is necessary, prior to conventional aerobic treatment. This paper addresses the application of coagulation-flocculation process using chemical coagulants, viz., aluminium sulphate (alum), polyaluminium chloride (PAC), ferrous sulphate and ferric chloride in combination with anionic polyelectrolyte. Polyaluminium chloride (PAC) in conjunction with lime and polyelectrolyte removed about 63.1% chemical oxygen demand (COD) and 45.2% biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) from PTA wastewater. Coagulation-flocculation process coupled with aerobic bio-oxidation treatment of PTA wastewater achieved, COD & BOD removals of 97.4% and 99.4%, respectively. The biodegradability enhancement evaluated in terms of the BOD5/COD ratio, increased from 0.45 to 0.67 at the optimum conditions. The results obtained from these studies indicate that the coagulation-flocculation process could be a suitable pretreatment method in reducing toxicity of PTA wastewater whilst enhancing biodegradability for aerobic biological treatment scheme.

  11. Remediation of phthalates in river sediment by integrated enhanced bioremediation and electrokinetic process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Gordon C C; Huang, Sheng-Chih; Jen, Yu-Sheng; Tsai, Pei-Shin

    2016-05-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of enhanced bioremediation coupling with electrokinetic process for promoting the growth of intrinsic microorganisms and removing phthalate esters (PAEs) from river sediment by adding an oxygen releasing compound (ORC). Test results are given as follows: Enhanced removal of PAEs was obtained by electrokinetics, through which the electroosmotic flow would render desorption of organic pollutants from sediment particles yielding an increased bioavailability. It was also found that the ORC injected into the sediment compartment not only would alleviate the pH value variation due to acid front and base front, but would be directly utilized as the carbon source and oxygen source for microbial growth resulting in an enhanced degradation of organic pollutants. However, injection of the ORC into the anode compartment could yield a lower degree of microbial growth due to the loss of ORC during the transport by EK. Through the analysis of molecular biotechnology it was found that both addition of an ORC and application of an external electric field can be beneficial to the growth of intrinsic microbial and abundance of microflora. In addition, the sequencing result showed that PAEs could be degraded by the following four strains: Flavobacterium sp., Bacillus sp., Pseudomonas sp., and Rhodococcus sp. The above findings confirm that coupling of enhanced bioremediation and electrokinetic process could be a viable remediation technology to treat PAEs-contaminated river sediment.

  12. Enhanced Performance of Denitrifying Sulifde Removal Process by 1,2-Naphthoquinone-4-Sulphonate

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Liu Chunshuang; Han Kang; Zhao Dongfeng; Guo Yadonag; Liu Lihong; Liu Fang; Zhao Chaocheng

    2016-01-01

    The denitrifying sulifde removal (DSR) process with bio-granules comprising both heterotrophic and autotrophic denitriifers can simultaneously convert nitrate, sulifde and acetate species into di-nitrogen gas, elemental sulfur and carbon dioxide, respectively, at high loading rates. This study has determined that the reaction rate of sulifde oxidized into sulfur could be enhanced in the presence of 1,2-naphthoquinone-4-sulphonate (NQS). The presence of NQS mitigated the inhibi-tion effects of sulifde species on denitriifcation. Furthermore, the reaction rates of nitrate and acetate to nitrogen gas and CO2, respectively, were also promoted in the presence of NQS, thereby enhancing the performance of DSR granules. The advantages and disadvantages of applying the NQS-DSR process are discussed.

  13. A mechanistic understanding of processing additive-induced efficiency enhancement in bulk heterojunction organic solar cells

    KAUST Repository

    Schmidt, Kristin

    2013-10-31

    The addition of processing additives is a widely used approach to increase power conversion efficiencies for many organic solar cells. We present how additives change the polymer conformation in the casting solution leading to a more intermixed phase-segregated network structure of the active layer which in turn results in a 5-fold enhancement in efficiency. © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  14. Enhancing the Industrial Service Offering : New Requirements on Content and Processes

    OpenAIRE

    Kowalkowski, Christian

    2006-01-01

    The overall purpose of this thesis is to describe and analyse how capital goods manufacturers can enhance their industrial service offering. The theoretical basis of this research is found in services marketing, recognising co-creation of value, that the service process is an open production system and that the customer determines value as the manufacturer can only offer value propositions. The empirical basis is a multiple case study of service management at BT Industries, Electrolux Laundry...

  15. Stimulation of alveolar macrophages by BCG vaccine enhances the process of lung fibrosis induced by bleomycin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chyczewska, E; Chyczewski, L; Bańkowski, E; Sułkowski, S; Nikliński, J

    1993-01-01

    It was found that the BCG vaccine injected subcutaneously to the rats enhances the process of lung fibrosis induced by bleomycin. Pretreatment of rats with this vaccine results in accumulation of activated macrophages in lung interstitium and in the bronchoalveolar spaces. It may be suggested that the activated macrophages release various cytokines which may stimulate the proliferation of fibroblasts and biosynthesis of extracellular matrix components.

  16. Twitter for teaching: Can social media be used to enhance the process of learning?

    OpenAIRE

    Evans, C

    2013-01-01

    Can social media be used to enhance the process of learning by students in higher education? Social media have become widely adopted by students in their personal lives. However, the application of social media to teaching and learning remains to be fully explored. In this study, the use of the social media tool Twitter for teaching was considered. Undergraduate students in Business and Management (n = 252) were encouraged to use Twitter for communicating with their tutor and each other durin...

  17. Synthesis of carbon nanotubes by plasma-enhanced CVD process: gas phase study of synthesis conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Guláš, Michal; Cojocaru, Costel Sorin; Fleaca, Claudiu; Farhat, Samir; Veis, Pavel; Le Normand, Francois

    2008-01-01

    International audience; To support experimental investigations, a model based on ChemkinTM software was used to simulate gas phase and surface chemistry during plasma-enhanced catalytic CVD of carbon nanotubes. According to these calculations, gas phase composition, etching process and growth rates are calculated. The role of several carbon species, hydrocarbon molecules and ions in the growth mechanism of carbon nanotubes is presented in this study. Study of different conditions of gas phase ...

  18. Synthesis of carbon nanbotubes by plasma-enhanced CVD process: gas phase study of synthesis conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guláš, M.; Cojocaru, C. S.; Fleaca, C. T.; Farhat, S.; Veis, P.; Le Normand, F.

    2008-09-01

    To support experimental investigations, a model based on Chemkin^TM software was used to simulate gas phase and surface chemistry during plasma-enhanced catalytic CVD of carbon nanotubes. According to these calculations, gas phase composition, etching process and growth rates are calculated. The role of several carbon species, hydrocarbon molecules and ions in the growth mechanism of carbon nanotubes is presented in this study. Study of different conditions of gas phase activation sources and pressure is performed.

  19. Apparatus and process to enhance the uniform formation of hollow glass microspheres

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumacher, Ray F

    2013-10-01

    A process and apparatus is provided for enhancing the formation of a uniform population of hollow glass microspheres. A burner head is used which directs incoming glass particles away from the cooler perimeter of the flame cone of the gas burner and distributes the glass particles in a uniform manner throughout the more evenly heated portions of the flame zone. As a result, as the glass particles are softened and expand by a released nucleating gas so as to form a hollow glass microsphere, the resulting hollow glass microspheres have a more uniform size and property distribution as a result of experiencing a more homogenous heat treatment process.

  20. Low-Energy Rate Enhancement in Recombination Processes of Electrons into Bare Uranium Ions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    WU Yong; ZENG Si-Liang; DUAN Bin; YAN Jun; WANG Jian-Guo; DONG Chen-Zhong; MA Xin-Wen

    2007-01-01

    Based on the Dirac-Fork-Slater method combined with the multichannel quantum defect theory, the recombination processes of electrons into bare uranium ions (U92+) are investigated in the relative energy range close to zero, and the x-ray spectrum emitted in the direct radiative recombination and cascades processes are simulated. Compared with the recent measurement, it is found that the rate enhancement comes from the additional populations on high Rydberg states. These additional populations may be produced by other recombination mechanisms, such as the external electric-magnetic effects and the many-body correlation effects, which still remains an open problem.

  1. In situ monitoring of biomolecular processes in living systems using surface-enhanced Raman scattering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altunbek, Mine; Kelestemur, Seda; Culha, Mustafa

    2015-12-01

    Surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) continues to strive to gather molecular level information from dynamic biological systems. It is our ongoing effort to utilize the technique for understanding of the biomolecular processes in living systems such as eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. In this study, the technique is investigated to identify cell death mechanisms in 2D and 3D in vitro cell culture models, which is a very important process in tissue engineering and pharmaceutical applications. Second, in situ biofilm formation monitoring is investigated to understand how microorganisms respond to the environmental stimuli, which inferred information can be used to interfere with biofilm formation and fight against their pathogenic activity.

  2. The Hamburg/ESO R-process Enhanced Star survey (HERES) XI. The highly $r$-process-enhanced star CS 29497-004

    CERN Document Server

    Hill, V; Beers, T C; Barklem, P S; Kratz, K -L; Nordström, B; Pfeiffer, B; Farouqi, K

    2016-01-01

    We report an abundance analysis for the highly r-process-enhanced (r-II) star CS 29497-004, a very metal-poor giant with Teff = 5013K and [Fe/H]=-2.85, whose nature was initially discovered in the course of the HERES project. Our analysis is based on high signal-to-noise, high-resolution (R~75000) VLT/UVES spectra and MARCS model atmospheres under the assumption of local thermodynamic equilibrium, and obtains abundance measurements for a total of 46 elements, 31 of which are neutron-capture elements. As is the case for the other 25 r-II stars currently known, the heavy-element abundance pattern of CS 29497-004 well-matches a scaled Solar System second peak r-process-element abundance pattern. We confirm our previous detection of Th, and demonstrate that this star does not exhibit an "actinide boost". Uranium is also detected (log e(U) =-2.20+/-0.30), albeit with a large measurement error that hampers its use as a precision cosmo-chronometer. Combining the various elemental chronometer pairs that are available...

  3. Supporting technology for enhanced oil recovery: EOR thermal processes. Seventh Amendment and Extension to Annex 4, Enhanced oil recovery thermal processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reid, T B [USDOE Bartlesville Project Office, OK (United States); Colonomos, P [INTEVEP, Filial de Petroleos de Venezuela, SA, Caracas (Venezuela)

    1993-02-01

    This report contains the results of efforts under the six tasks of the Seventh Amendment and Extension of Annex IV, Enhanced Oil Recovery Thermal Processes of the Venezuela/USA Agreement. The report is presented in sections (for each of the 6 tasks) and each section contains one or more reports prepared by various individuals or groups describing the results of efforts under each of the tasks. A statement of each task, taken from the agreement, is presented on the first page of each section. The tasks are numbered 50 through 55. The first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh reports on Annex IV, Venezuela MEM/USA-DOE Fossil Energy Report IV-1, IV-2, IV-3, IV-4, IV-5 and IV-6 (DOE/BETC/SP-83/15, DOE/BC-84/6/SP, DOE/BC-86/2/SP, DOE/BC-87/2/SP, DOE/BC-89/l/SP, DOE/BC-90/l/SP, and DOE/BC-92/l/SP) contain the results for the first 49 tasks. Those reports are dated April 1983, August 1984, March 1986, July 1987, November 1988, December 1989, and October 1991, respectively. Each task report has been processed separately for inclusion in the Energy Science and Technology Database.

  4. Optimum temperature policy for sorption enhanced steam methane reforming process for hydrogen production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Retnamma, Rajasree [National Laboratory of energy and Geology (LNEG), Lisbon (PT). Energy Systems Modeling and Optimization Unit (UMOSE); Ravi Kumar, V.; Kulkarni, B.D. [National Chemical Laboratory, Pune (India). Chemical Engineering and Process Development

    2010-07-01

    Sorption enhanced steam methane reforming (SE-SMR) process offers high potential for producing H{sub 2} in fuel cell applications compared to conventional catalytic steam methane reforming (SMR) process. The reactor temperature can significantly affect the performance of the SE-SMR reaction and simultaneous adsorption behavior of CO{sub 2}. Determination of an optimal temperature policy in SE-SMR reactor is therefore an important optimization issue. Multi-stage operation is a possible way to implement optimum temperature policies. In the present work, simulation study has been carried out for multi-stage operation using a mathematical model incorporating basic mechanisms operating in a fixed bed reactor with nonlinear reaction kinetic features of an SE-SMR process. Three cases were considered for implementing the multi-stage concept and the results show that increase in temperature based on a policy leads to considerable improvement in the process performance. (orig.)

  5. Controlled Thermal-Mechanical Processing of Tubes and Pipes for Enhanced Manufacturing and Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kolarik, Robert V.

    2005-11-11

    The Alloy Steel Business of The Timken Company won an award for the controlled thermo-mechanical processing (CTMP) project and assembled a strong international public/private partnership to execute the project. The premise of the CTMP work was to combine Timken's product understanding with its process expertise and knowledge of metallurgical and deformation fundamentals developed during the project to build a predictive process design capability. The CTMP effort succeeded in delivering a pc-based capability in the tube optimization model, with a virtual pilot plant (VPP) feature to represent the desired tube making process to predict the resultant microstructure tailored for the desired application. Additional tasks included a system for direct, online measurement of grain size and demonstration of application of CTMP via robotically enhanced manufacturing.

  6. Sensor-based atomic layer deposition for rapid process learning and enhanced manufacturability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lei, Wei

    In the search for sensor based atomic layer deposition (ALD) process to accelerate process learning and enhance manufacturability, we have explored new reactor designs and applied in-situ process sensing to W and HfO 2 ALD processes. A novel wafer scale ALD reactor, which features fast gas switching, good process sensing compatibility and significant similarity to the real manufacturing environment, is constructed. The reactor has a unique movable reactor cap design that allows two possible operation modes: (1) steady-state flow with alternating gas species; or (2) fill-and-pump-out cycling of each gas, accelerating the pump-out by lifting the cap to employ the large chamber volume as ballast. Downstream quadrupole mass spectrometry (QMS) sampling is applied for in-situ process sensing of tungsten ALD process. The QMS reveals essential surface reaction dynamics through real-time signals associated with byproduct generation as well as precursor introduction and depletion for each ALD half cycle, which are then used for process learning and optimization. More subtle interactions such as imperfect surface saturation and reactant dose interaction are also directly observed by QMS, indicating that ALD process is more complicated than the suggested layer-by-layer growth. By integrating in real-time the byproduct QMS signals over each exposure and plotting it against process cycle number, the deposition kinetics on the wafer is directly measured. For continuous ALD runs, the total integrated byproduct QMS signal in each ALD run is also linear to ALD film thickness, and therefore can be used for ALD film thickness metrology. The in-situ process sensing is also applied to HfO2 ALD process that is carried out in a furnace type ALD reactor. Precursor dose end-point control is applied to precisely control the precursor dose in each half cycle. Multiple process sensors, including quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) and QMS are used to provide real time process information. The

  7. Sustained multifocal attentional enhancement of stimulus processing in early visual areas predicts tracking performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Störmer, Viola S; Winther, Gesche N; Li, Shu-Chen; Andersen, Søren K

    2013-03-20

    Keeping track of multiple moving objects is an essential ability of visual perception. However, the mechanisms underlying this ability are not well understood. We instructed human observers to track five or seven independent randomly moving target objects amid identical nontargets and recorded steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEPs) elicited by these stimuli. Visual processing of moving targets, as assessed by SSVEP amplitudes, was continuously facilitated relative to the processing of identical but irrelevant nontargets. The cortical sources of this enhancement were located to areas including early visual cortex V1-V3 and motion-sensitive area MT, suggesting that the sustained multifocal attentional enhancement during multiple object tracking already operates at hierarchically early stages of visual processing. Consistent with this interpretation, the magnitude of attentional facilitation during tracking in a single trial predicted the speed of target identification at the end of the trial. Together, these findings demonstrate that attention can flexibly and dynamically facilitate the processing of multiple independent object locations in early visual areas and thereby allow for tracking of these objects.

  8. Solar-Enhanced Advanced Oxidation Processes for Water Treatment: Simultaneous Removal of Pathogens and Chemical Pollutants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsydenova, Oyuna; Batoev, Valeriy; Batoeva, Agniya

    2015-08-14

    The review explores the feasibility of simultaneous removal of pathogens and chemical pollutants by solar-enhanced advanced oxidation processes (AOPs). The AOPs are based on in-situ generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), most notably hydroxyl radicals •OH, that are capable of destroying both pollutant molecules and pathogen cells. The review presents evidence of simultaneous removal of pathogens and chemical pollutants by photocatalytic processes, namely TiO2 photocatalysis and photo-Fenton. Complex water matrices with high loads of pathogens and chemical pollutants negatively affect the efficiency of disinfection and pollutant removal. This is due to competition between chemical substances and pathogens for generated ROS. Other possible negative effects include light screening, competitive photon absorption, adsorption on the catalyst surface (thereby inhibiting its photocatalytic activity), etc. Besides, some matrix components may serve as nutrients for pathogens, thus hindering the disinfection process. Each type of water/wastewater would require a tailor-made approach and the variables that were shown to influence the processes-catalyst/oxidant concentrations, incident radiation flux, and pH-need to be adjusted in order to achieve the required degree of pollutant and pathogen removal. Overall, the solar-enhanced AOPs hold promise as an environmentally-friendly way to substitute or supplement conventional water/wastewater treatment, particularly in areas without access to centralized drinking water or sewage/wastewater treatment facilities.

  9. Exercise and BDNF reduce Aβ production by enhancing α-secretase processing of APP.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nigam, Saket M; Xu, Shaohua; Kritikou, Joanna S; Marosi, Krisztina; Brodin, Lennart; Mattson, Mark P

    2017-07-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is an age-related neurodegenerative disorder characterized by aggregation of toxic forms of amyloid β peptide (Aβ). Treatment strategies have largely been focused on inhibiting the enzymes (β- and γ-secretases) that liberate Aβ from the amyloid precursor protein (APP). While evidence suggests that individuals who exercise regularly are at reduced risk for AD and studies of animal models demonstrate that running can ameliorate brain Aβ pathology and associated cognitive deficits, the underlying mechanisms are unknown. However, considerable evidence suggests that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mediates beneficial effects of exercise on neuroplasticity and cellular stress resistance. Here, we tested the hypothesis that BDNF promotes non-amyloidogenic APP processing. Using a transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease and cultured human neural cells, we demonstrate that exercise and BDNF reduce production of toxic Aβ peptides through a mechanism involving enhanced α-secretase processing of APP. This anti-amyloidogenic APP processing involves subcellular redistribution of α-secretase and an increase in intracellular neuroprotective APP peptides capable of binding and inhibiting β-secretase. Moreover, our results suggest that BDNF's ability to promote neurite outgrowth is primarily exerted through pathways other than APP processing. Exercise and other factors that enhance BDNF signaling may therefore have both therapeutic and prophylactic value in the battle against AD. Read the Editorial Highlight for this article on page 191. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  10. An r-process Enhanced Star in the Dwarf Galaxy Tucana III

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, T. T.; Simon, J. D.; Marshall, J. L.; Li, T. S.; Carollo, D.; DePoy, D. L.; Nagasawa, D. Q.; Bernstein, R. A.; Drlica-Wagner, A.; Abdalla, F. B.; Allam, S.; Annis, J.; Bechtol, K.; Benoit-Lévy, A.; Brooks, D.; Buckley-Geer, E.; Carnero Rosell, A.; Carrasco Kind, M.; Carretero, J.; Cunha, C. E.; da Costa, L. N.; Desai, S.; Eifler, T. F.; Fausti Neto, A.; Flaugher, B.; Frieman, J.; García-Bellido, J.; Gaztanaga, E.; Gerdes, D. W.; Gruen, D.; Gruendl, R. A.; Gschwend, J.; Gutierrez, G.; James, D. J.; Krause, E.; Kuehn, K.; Kuropatkin, N.; Lahav, O.; Miquel, R.; Plazas, A. A.; Romer, A. K.; Sanchez, E.; Santiago, B.; Scarpine, V.; Smith, R. C.; Soares-Santos, M.; Sobreira, F.; Suchyta, E.; Swanson, M. E. C.; Tarle, G.; Walker, A. R.; DES Collaboration

    2017-03-01

    Chemically peculiar stars in dwarf galaxies provide a window for exploring the birth environment of stars with varying chemical enrichment. We present a chemical abundance analysis of the brightest star in the newly discovered ultra-faint dwarf galaxy candidate Tucana III. Because it is particularly bright for a star in an ultra-faint Milky Way (MW) satellite, we are able to measure the abundance of 28 elements, including 13 neutron-capture species. This star, DES J235532.66‑593114.9 (DES J235532), shows a mild enhancement in neutron-capture elements associated with the r-process and can be classified as an r-I star. DES J235532 is the first r-I star to be discovered in an ultra-faint satellite, and Tuc III is the second extremely low-luminosity system found to contain r-process enriched material, after Reticulum II. Comparison of the abundance pattern of DES J235532 with r-I and r-II stars found in other dwarf galaxies and in the MW halo suggests a common astrophysical origin for the neutron-capture elements seen in all r-process enhanced stars. We explore both internal and external scenarios for the r-process enrichment of Tuc III and show that with abundance patterns for additional stars, it should be possible to distinguish between them. This paper includes data gathered with the 6.5 meter Magellan Telescopes located at Las Campanas Observatory, Chile.

  11. Alternative selection of processing additives to enhance the lifetime of OPVs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kettle, J.; Waters, H.; Horie, M.; Smith, G. C.

    2016-03-01

    The use of processing additives is known to accelerate the degradation of organic photovoltaics (OPVs) and therefore, this paper studies the impact of selecting alternative processing additives for PCPDTBT:PC71BM solar cells in order to improve the stability. The use of naphthalene-based processing additives has been undertaken, which is shown to reduce the initial power conversion efficiency by 23%-42%, primarily due to a decrease in the short-circuit current density, but also fill factor. However, the stability is greatly enhanced by using such additives, with the long term stability (T 50%) enhanced by a factor of four. The results show that there is a trade-off between initial performance and stability to consider when selecting the initial process additives. XPS studies have provided some insight into the decreased degradation and show that using 1-chloronaphthalene (ClN) leads to reduced morphology changes and reduced oxidation of the thiophene-ring within the PCPDTBT backbone.

  12. Enhancement of the automatic ultrasonic signal processing system using digital technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Koo, In Soo; Park, H. Y.; Suh, Y. S.; Kim, D. Hoon; Huh, S.; Sung, S. H.; Jang, G. S.; Ryoo, S. G.; Choi, J. H.; Kim, Y. H.; Lee, J. C.; Kim, D. Hyun; Park, H. J.; Kim, Y. C.; Lee, J. P.; Park, C. H.; Kim, M. S

    1999-12-01

    The objective of this study is to develop the automatic ultrasonic signal processing system which can be used in the inspection equipment to assess the integrity of the reactor vessel by enhancing the performance of the ultrasonic signal processing system. Main activities of this study divided into three categories such as the development of the circuits for generating ultrasonic signal and receiving the signal from the inspection equipment, the development of signal processing algorithm and H/W of the data processing system, and the development of the specification for application programs and system S/W for the analysis and evaluation computer. The results of main activities are as follows 1) the design of the ultrasonic detector and the automatic ultrasonic signal processing system by using the investigation of the state-of-the-art technology in the inside and outside of the country. 2) the development of H/W and S/W of the data processing system based on the results. Especially, the H/W of the data processing system, which have both advantages of digital and analog controls through the real-time digital signal processing, was developed using the DSP which can process the digital signal in the real-time, and was developed not only firmware of the data processing system in order for the peripherals but also the test algorithm of specimen for the calibration. The application programs and the system S/W of the analysis/evaluation computer were developed. Developed equipment was verified by the performance test. Based on developed prototype for the automatic ultrasonic signal processing system, the localization of the overall ultrasonic inspection equipment for nuclear industries would be expected through the further studies of the H/W establishment of real applications, developing the S/W specification of the analysis computer. (author)

  13. Application of image processing techniques for contrast enhancement in dense breast digital mammograms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunes, Fatima d. L. d. S.; Schiabel, Homero; Benatti, Rodrigo H.

    1999-05-01

    Dense breasts, that usually are characteristic of women less than 40 years old, difficult many times early detection of breast cancer. In this work we present the application of some image processing techniques intended to enhance the contrast in dense breast images, regarding the detection of clustered microcalcifications. The procedure was, firstly, determining in the literature the main techniques used for mammographic images contrast enhancement. The results indicate that, in general: (1) as expected, the overall performance of the CAD scheme for clusters detection decreased when applied exclusively to dense breast images, compared to the application to a set of images without this characteristic; (2) most of the techniques for contrast enhancement used successfully in generic mammography images databases are not able to enhance structures of athirst in databases formed only by dense breasts images, due to the very poor contrast between microcalcifications, for example, and other tissues. These features should stress, therefore, the need of developing a methodology specifically for this type of images in order to provide better conditions to the detection of breast suspicious structures in these group of women.

  14. Effect of sodium reduction and flavor enhancer addition on probiotic Prato cheese processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, H L A; Balthazar, C F; Esmerino, E A; Vieira, A H; Cappato, L P; Neto, R P C; Verruck, S; Cavalcanti, R N; Portela, J B; Andrade, M M; Moraes, J; Franco, R M; Tavares, M I B; Prudencio, E S; Freitas, M Q; Nascimento, J S; Silva, M C; Raices, R S L; Cruz, A G

    2017-09-01

    The effect of partial substitution of NaCl with KCl and the flavor enhancers addition (arginine, yeast extract and oregano extract) on Probiotic Prato cheese processing with (L. casei 01, 7logCFU/mL) was investigated. Microbiological (lactic acid bacteria and probiotic counts), physicochemical (proximate composition, pH, proteolysis), bioactivity (antioxidant and angiotensin I-converting enzyme inhibitory activity), rheological (uniaxial compression and creep tests), water mobility (time domain low field magnetic resonance), microstructure (scanning electron microscopy) and sensory evaluation (consumer test) were performed. Sodium reduction and flavor enhancers addition did not constitute an obstacle to the survival of lactic and probiotic bacteria. Proximate composition, antioxidant and angiotensin I-converting enzyme inhibitory activity, and the rheological parameters were affected by the addition of flavor enhancer. No change in the fatty acid profile of cheeses was observed while good performance in the consumer test was obtained by the addition of yeast extract and oregano extract. Prato cheese can be an adequate carrier of probiotics and the addition of different flavor enhancers can contribute developing this functional product in the cheese industry. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. A Novel Approach to Mineral Carbonation: Enhancing Carbonation While Avoiding Mineral Pretreatment Process Cost

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andrew V. G. Chizmeshya; Michael J. McKelvy; Kyle Squires; Ray W. Carpenter; Hamdallah Bearat

    2007-06-21

    Known fossil fuel reserves, especially coal, can support global energy demands for centuries to come, if the environmental problems associated with CO{sub 2} emissions can be overcome. Unlike other CO{sub 2} sequestration candidate technologies that propose long-term storage, mineral sequestration provides permanent disposal by forming geologically stable mineral carbonates. Carbonation of the widely occurring mineral olivine (e.g., forsterite, Mg{sub 2}SiO{sub 4}) is a large-scale sequestration process candidate for regional implementation, which converts CO{sub 2} into the environmentally benign mineral magnesite (MgCO{sub 3}). The primary goal is cost-competitive process development. As the process is exothermic, it inherently offers low-cost potential. Enhancing carbonation reactivity is key to economic viability. Recent studies at the U.S. DOE Albany Research Center have established that aqueous-solution carbonation using supercritical CO{sub 2} is a promising process; even without olivine activation, 30-50% carbonation has been achieved in an hour. Mechanical activation (e.g., attrition) has accelerated the carbonation process to an industrial timescale (i.e., near completion in less than an hour), at reduced pressure and temperature. However, the activation cost is too high to be economical and lower cost pretreatment options are needed. We have discovered that robust silica-rich passivating layers form on the olivine surface during carbonation. As carbonation proceeds, these passivating layers thicken, fracture and eventually exfoliate, exposing fresh olivine surfaces during rapidly-stirred/circulating carbonation. We are exploring the mechanisms that govern carbonation reactivity and the impact that (1) modeling/controlling the slurry fluid-flow conditions, (2) varying the aqueous ion species/size and concentration (e.g., Li+, Na+, K+, Rb+, Cl-, HCO{sub 3}{sup -}), and (3) incorporating select sonication offer to enhance exfoliation and carbonation. Thus

  16. Nanomilling of Drugs for Bioavailability Enhancement: A Holistic Formulation-Process Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Meng; Azad, Mohammad; Davé, Rajesh; Bilgili, Ecevit

    2016-01-01

    Preparation of drug nanoparticles via wet media milling (nanomilling) is a very versatile drug delivery platform and is suitable for oral, injectable, inhalable, and buccal applications. Wet media milling followed by various drying processes has become a well-established and proven formulation approach especially for bioavailability enhancement of poorly water-soluble drugs. It has several advantages such as organic solvent-free processing, tunable and relatively high drug loading, and applicability to a multitude of poorly water-soluble drugs. Although the physical stability of the wet-milled suspensions (nanosuspensions) has attracted a lot of attention, fundamental understanding of the process has been lacking until recently. The objective of this review paper is to present fundamental insights from available published literature while summarizing the recent advances and highlighting the gap areas that have not received adequate attention. First, stabilization by conventionally used polymers/surfactants and novel stabilizers is reviewed. Then, a fundamental understanding of the process parameters, with a focus on wet stirred media milling, is revealed based on microhydrodynamic models. This review is expected to bring a holistic formulation-process perspective to the nanomilling process and pave the way for robust process development scale-up. Finally, challenges are indicated with a view to shedding light on future opportunities. PMID:27213434

  17. Enhancing surgical performance outcomes through process-driven care: a systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pucher, Philip H; Aggarwal, Rajesh; Singh, Pritam; Darzi, Ara

    2014-06-01

    Recent evidence has demonstrated the variability in quality of postoperative care, as measured by rates of failure to rescue (FTR). The identification of structure- and process-related factors affecting the quality of postoperative care is the first step towards understanding and improving outcomes. The aim of this review is to review current evidence for structure and process factors affecting postoperative care. A systematic review was conducted. Studies were selected that examined structure or process variables affecting FTR rates and postoperative outcomes. Quality analysis with Jadad and Newcastle-Ottawa scales was conducted and poor-quality studies were excluded. Thirty-seven studies were included in final analysis. Of these, 23 were related to enhanced recovery protocols in seven surgical specialties. Twenty-one of these 23 studies reported decreases in length of stay. Six studies also reported decreases in morbidity. No studies reported increases in stay duration or morbidity. Of the 16 studies that examined other structural and process factors, the strongest evidence was for the association between nursing ratios and FTR rates. The effects of hospital size, resources, and subspecialist care processes were less clear. Process-led care represents a clear, evidence-based approach that can be integrated on a local scale, without necessitating major structural or organisational change, to improve outcomes and may also be cost effective. To foster success, process improvement must be driven on a local level and backed up by appropriate understanding, education, and multidisciplinary involvement.

  18. Nanomilling of Drugs for Bioavailability Enhancement: A Holistic Formulation-Process Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Meng; Azad, Mohammad; Davé, Rajesh; Bilgili, Ecevit

    2016-05-20

    Preparation of drug nanoparticles via wet media milling (nanomilling) is a very versatile drug delivery platform and is suitable for oral, injectable, inhalable, and buccal applications. Wet media milling followed by various drying processes has become a well-established and proven formulation approach especially for bioavailability enhancement of poorly water-soluble drugs. It has several advantages such as organic solvent-free processing, tunable and relatively high drug loading, and applicability to a multitude of poorly water-soluble drugs. Although the physical stability of the wet-milled suspensions (nanosuspensions) has attracted a lot of attention, fundamental understanding of the process has been lacking until recently. The objective of this review paper is to present fundamental insights from available published literature while summarizing the recent advances and highlighting the gap areas that have not received adequate attention. First, stabilization by conventionally used polymers/surfactants and novel stabilizers is reviewed. Then, a fundamental understanding of the process parameters, with a focus on wet stirred media milling, is revealed based on microhydrodynamic models. This review is expected to bring a holistic formulation-process perspective to the nanomilling process and pave the way for robust process development scale-up. Finally, challenges are indicated with a view to shedding light on future opportunities.

  19. Nanomilling of Drugs for Bioavailability Enhancement: A Holistic Formulation-Process Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meng Li

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Preparation of drug nanoparticles via wet media milling (nanomilling is a very versatile drug delivery platform and is suitable for oral, injectable, inhalable, and buccal applications. Wet media milling followed by various drying processes has become a well-established and proven formulation approach especially for bioavailability enhancement of poorly water-soluble drugs. It has several advantages such as organic solvent-free processing, tunable and relatively high drug loading, and applicability to a multitude of poorly water-soluble drugs. Although the physical stability of the wet-milled suspensions (nanosuspensions has attracted a lot of attention, fundamental understanding of the process has been lacking until recently. The objective of this review paper is to present fundamental insights from available published literature while summarizing the recent advances and highlighting the gap areas that have not received adequate attention. First, stabilization by conventionally used polymers/surfactants and novel stabilizers is reviewed. Then, a fundamental understanding of the process parameters, with a focus on wet stirred media milling, is revealed based on microhydrodynamic models. This review is expected to bring a holistic formulation-process perspective to the nanomilling process and pave the way for robust process development scale-up. Finally, challenges are indicated with a view to shedding light on future opportunities.

  20. Expecting to teach enhances motor learning and information processing during practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daou, Marcos; Lohse, Keith R; Miller, Matthew W

    2016-10-01

    Recent research has revealed that having learners study and practice a motor skill with the expectation of having to teach it enhances motor learning. However, the mechanisms underlying this effect remain unknown. We attempted to replicate this effect and elucidate the mechanisms underlying it. Thus, participants studied golf putting instructions and practiced putting either with the expectation of having to teach another participant how to putt or the expectation of being tested on their putting. During this acquisition phase, participants' motivation, anxiety, and information processing (the duration they took preparing each putt) were indexed as possible mechanisms underlying a motor learning effect. One day and seven days after the acquisition phase, learning was assessed by testing all participants on their golf putting. Results revealed that expecting to teach enhanced motor learning, replicating the original finding. Moreover, expecting to teach increased the duration participants took preparing each putt, which was correlated with superior motor learning. Thus, results suggest expecting to teach enhances motor learning by increasing information processing during practice.

  1. Digital Learning As Enhanced Learning Processing? Cognitive Evidence for New insight of Smart Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dina Di Giacomo

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Large use of technology improved quality of life across aging and favoring the development of digital skills. Digital skills can be considered an enhancing to human cognitive activities. New research trend is about the impact of the technology in the elaboration information processing of the children. We wanted to analyze the influence of technology in early age evaluating the impact on cognition. We investigated the performance of a sample composed of n. 191 children in school age distributed in two groups as users: high digital users and low digital users. We measured the verbal and visuoperceptual cognitive performance of children by n. 8 standardized psychological tests and ad hoc self-report questionnaire. Results have evidenced the influence of digital exposition on cognitive development: the cognitive performance is looked enhanced and better developed: high digital users performed better in naming, semantic, visual memory and logical reasoning tasks. Our finding confirms the data present in literature and suggests the strong impact of the technology using not only in the social, educational and quality of life of the people, but also it outlines the functionality and the effect of the digital exposition in early age; increased cognitive abilities of the children tailor digital skilled generation with enhanced cognitive processing toward to smart learning.

  2. Self-enhancement processing in the default network: a single-pulse TMS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luber, Bruce; Lou, Hans C; Keenan, Julian P; Lisanby, Sarah H

    2012-11-01

    Much research has been done on positive self-evaluation and its relationship to mental health. However, little is known about its neural underpinnings. Imaging studies have suggested that the brain's default network is involved with self-related processing and that one portion of the default network, medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC), is particularly involved with self-evaluation. Here, we used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to causally demonstrate that this network, and particularly MPFC, is involved with self-evaluative processing. In a first experiment, 27 healthy volunteers judged whether adjectives, evenly divided between desirable and undesirable traits, described themselves or their best friends, and a robust self-enhancement bias effect was found. In a second experiment, single-pulse TMS was applied targeting three locations (MPFC and left and right parietal cortex) in a different group of healthy volunteers while they performed the adjective task. In each trial, TMS was applied at one of five different times relative to onset of the adjective ranging from 0 to 480 ms. TMS affected self-enhancement bias in a site- and latency-specific manner: at MPFC, the self-enhancement bias actually reversed at 160 ms, with subjects favoring their best friend over themselves. TMS may thus be of use in investigating areas of mental illness in which self-evaluation is abnormal, potentially as a diagnostic tool. In addition, the present study, combined with our previous reports (Lou et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 101(17):6827-6832, 2004, Exp Brain Res 207:27-38, 2010), causally demonstrates two kinds of self-related processing within the default network, one centered in parietal cortex and concerned with retrieval of self-related associations, and the other MPFC-centered and involved in self-evaluative processing.

  3. Bandwidth Enhancement between Graphics Processing Units on the Peripheral Component Interconnect Bus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANTON Alin

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available General purpose computing on graphics processing units is a new trend in high performance computing. Present day applications require office and personal supercomputers which are mostly based on many core hardware accelerators communicating with the host system through the Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI bus. Parallel data compression is a difficult topic but compression has been used successfully to improve the communication between parallel message passing interface (MPI processes on high performance computing clusters. In this paper we show that special pur pose compression algorithms designed for scientific floating point data can be used to enhance the bandwidth between 2 graphics processing unit (GPU devices on the PCI Express (PCIe 3.0 x16 bus in a homebuilt personal supercomputer (PSC.

  4. Logarithmic Type Image Processing Framework for Enhancing Photographs Acquired in Extreme Lighting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    FLOREA, C.

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The Logarithmic Type Image Processing (LTIP tools are mathematical models that were constructed for the representation and processing of gray tones images. By careful redefinition of the fundamental operations, namely addition and scalar multiplication, a set of mathematical properties are achieved. Here we propose the extension of LTIP models by a novel parameterization rule that ensures preservation of the required cone space structure. To prove the usability of the proposed extension we present an application for low-light image enhancement in images acquired with digital still camera. The closing property of the named model facilitates similarity with human visual system and digital camera processing pipeline, thus leading to superior behavior when compared with state of the art methods.

  5. Enhanced biological phosphorus removal and its modeling for the activated sludge and membrane bioreactor processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuthi, M F R; Guo, W S; Ngo, H H; Nghiem, L D; Hai, F I

    2013-07-01

    A modified activated sludge process (ASP) for enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) needs to sustain stable performance for wastewater treatment to avoid eutrophication in the aquatic environment. Unfortunately, the overall efficiency of the EBPR in ASPs and membrane bioreactors (MBRs) is frequently hindered by different operational/system constraints. Moreover, although phosphorus removal data from several wastewater treatment systems are available, a comprehensive mathematical model of the process is still lacking. This paper presents a critical review that highlights the core issues of the biological phosphorus removal in ASPs and MBRs while discussing the inhibitory process requirements for other nutrients' removal. This mini review also successfully provided an assessment of the available models for predicting phosphorus removal in both ASP and MBR systems. The advantages and limitations of the existing models were discussed together with the inclusion of few guidelines for their improvement. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Five-Photon Absorption and Selective Enhancement of Multiphoton Absorption Processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friese, Daniel H; Bast, Radovan; Ruud, Kenneth

    2015-05-20

    We study one-, two-, three-, four-, and five-photon absorption of three centrosymmetric molecules using density functional theory. These calculations are the first ab initio calculations of five-photon absorption. Even- and odd-order absorption processes show different trends in the absorption cross sections. The behavior of all even- and odd-photon absorption properties shows a semiquantitative similarity, which can be explained using few-state models. This analysis shows that odd-photon absorption processes are largely determined by the one-photon absorption strength, whereas all even-photon absorption strengths are largely dominated by the two-photon absorption strength, in both cases modulated by powers of the polarizability of the final excited state. We demonstrate how to selectively enhance a specific multiphoton absorption process.

  7. A Study on Enhancement of Filtration Process with Filter Aids Diatomaceous Earth and Wood Pulp Cellulose

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    都丽红; 陈旭; 李文苹; 朱企新

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, a study to enhance the filtration for solid/liquid materials difficult to be filtered, such as highly viscous, highly compactible or gel like materials, is presented. Filter aids diatomaceous earth and wood pulp cellulose are used to enhance the filtration by improving filter cake structure and properties in the filtration of a biological health product and a highly viscous chemical fiber polymer melt product. The property of solid/liquidsystems, filtration at different flow rates, specitic cake resistance, cake wetness, filtration rate, filtrate turbidity for filter aid selection and evaluation, and operation optimization are investigated. The results are successfully applied to industrial process, .and can be used as a reference for similar filtration applications.

  8. Study on Enhancement in Gibbsite Precipitation of Bayer Process under 33 kHz Ultrasound

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jihua ZHAO; Qiyuan CHEN

    2003-01-01

    The enhancement of gibbsite precipitation in Bayer process by 33 kHz ultrasound has been studied. From orthomethod experiment, the optimized operating parameters of treatment under 33 kHz ultrasonic cleaner have obtained.Compared with crystallization of Al(OH)3 without treatment of ultrasound, the precipitation time is reduced by 15 h when the precipitation ratio is 45%. From the results of grain size distribution and SEM photographs of gibbsite, it is found that secondary nucleation and agglomeration could be enhanced under 33 kHz ultrasound. The products are same from comparison of X-ray powder diffraction, but the Raman spectrum of sodium aluminate solution under 33 kHz ultrasound is different from that without ultrasound.

  9. Orientation enhancement in early visual processing can explain time course of brightness contrast and White's illusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karmakar, Subhajit; Sarkar, Sandip

    2013-06-01

    Dynamics of orientation tuning in V1 indicates that computational model of V1 should not only comprise of bank of static spatially oriented filters but also include the contribution for dynamical response facilitation or suppression along orientation. Time evolution of orientation response in V1 can emerge due to time- dependent excitation and lateral inhibition in the orientation domain. Lateral inhibition in the orientation domain suggests that Ernst Mach's proposition can be applied for the enhancement of initial orientation distribution that is generated due to interaction of visual stimulus with spatially oriented filters and subcortical temporal filter. Oriented spatial filtering that appears much early (explain experimentally observed temporal dynamics of brightness contrast illusion. But, enhancement of orientation response at early phase of visual processing is the key mechanism that can guide visual system to predict the brightness by "Max-rule" or "Winner Takes All" (WTA) estimation and thus producing White's illusions at any exposure.

  10. Agro-Process Intensification through Synthetic Rhizosphere Media for Nitrogen Fixation and Yield Enhancement in Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Akay

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: In order to combat global warming and the emerging Food, Energy and Water shortages (FEWs, several approaches have been adopted, including genetic engineering and farming practices. Biomass based energy technology will further stress food and water resources and hence novel holistic approaches to FEWs should be designed. Approach: A novel technique (Agro-Process Intensification, A-PI which simultaneously addresses FEWs in general and food production in particular was described. The technique was based on the enhancement of multiple interactions between plant roots, water, nutrients and bacteria using soil additives in the form of micro-bioreactors which allow plant root growth through them thus generating a micro-environment acting as a Synthetic Rhizo Sphere (SRS. The SRS-media was a nano-structured micro-porous crosslinked, elastic, ionic and highly hydrophilic polymer, facilitating the efficient use of water and nutrients as well as nitrogen fixation in legumes. Results: SRS media, with or without bacteria, was prepared, characterized and used in greenhouse experiments. Grass, for which the enhancement was well above 200% under water stress, was used to evaluate the mechanism of A-PI. The pea plant was used to demonstrate the intensification achievable by biologically active micro-bioreactors in which nitrogen fixing bacteria, Rhizobia, were supported within the SRS-media. Biologically active SRS-media enhanced the plant root infection by nitrogen fixing bacteria and increased both crop yield (ca. 70% and mineral content. Conclusion/Recommendations: A-PI is achieved principally through the elimination of the random nature of the root/water/nutrient/microorganism interactions. The association of SRS-media with plant roots provides a unique and efficient delivery technique for water and nutrients while protecting beneficial bacteria within the SRS for infection enhancement. Focus on the understanding of the molecular

  11. Anodic Fenton process assisted by a microbial fuel cell for enhanced degradation of organic pollutants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xian-Wei; Sun, Xue-Fei; Li, Dao-Bo; Li, Wen-Wei; Huang, Yu-Xi; Sheng, Guo-Ping; Yu, Han-Qing

    2012-09-15

    The electro-Fenton process is efficient for degradation of organic pollutants, but it suffers from the high operating costs due to the need of power investment. Here, a new anodic Fenton system is developed for energy-saving and efficient treatment of organic pollutants by incorporating microbial fuel cell (MFC) into an anodic Fenton process. This system is composed of an anodic Fenton reactor and a two-chamber air-cathode MFC. The power generated from a two-chamber MFC is used to drive the anodic Fenton process for Acid Orange 7 (AO7) degradation through accelerating in situ generation of Fe(2+) from sacrificial iron. The kinetic results show that the MFC-assisted anodic Fenton process system had a significantly higher pseudo-first-order rate constant than those for the chemical Fenton methods. The electrochemical analysis reveals that AO7 did not hinder the corrosion of iron. The anodic Fenton process was influenced by the MFC performance. It was also found that increasing dissolved oxygen in the cathode improved the MFC power density, which in turn enhanced the AO7 degradation rate. These clearly demonstrate that the anodic Fenton process could be integrated with MFC to develop a self-sustained system for cost-effective and energy-saving electrochemical wastewater treatment. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Microbes as Engines of Ecosystem Function: When Does Community Structure Enhance Predictions of Ecosystem Processes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Emily B; Knelman, Joseph E; Schindlbacher, Andreas; Siciliano, Steven; Breulmann, Marc; Yannarell, Anthony; Beman, J M; Abell, Guy; Philippot, Laurent; Prosser, James; Foulquier, Arnaud; Yuste, Jorge C; Glanville, Helen C; Jones, Davey L; Angel, Roey; Salminen, Janne; Newton, Ryan J; Bürgmann, Helmut; Ingram, Lachlan J; Hamer, Ute; Siljanen, Henri M P; Peltoniemi, Krista; Potthast, Karin; Bañeras, Lluís; Hartmann, Martin; Banerjee, Samiran; Yu, Ri-Qing; Nogaro, Geraldine; Richter, Andreas; Koranda, Marianne; Castle, Sarah C; Goberna, Marta; Song, Bongkeun; Chatterjee, Amitava; Nunes, Olga C; Lopes, Ana R; Cao, Yiping; Kaisermann, Aurore; Hallin, Sara; Strickland, Michael S; Garcia-Pausas, Jordi; Barba, Josep; Kang, Hojeong; Isobe, Kazuo; Papaspyrou, Sokratis; Pastorelli, Roberta; Lagomarsino, Alessandra; Lindström, Eva S; Basiliko, Nathan; Nemergut, Diana R

    2016-01-01

    Microorganisms are vital in mediating the earth's biogeochemical cycles; yet, despite our rapidly increasing ability to explore complex environmental microbial communities, the relationship between microbial community structure and ecosystem processes remains poorly understood. Here, we address a fundamental and unanswered question in microbial ecology: 'When do we need to understand microbial community structure to accurately predict function?' We present a statistical analysis investigating the value of environmental data and microbial community structure independently and in combination for explaining rates of carbon and nitrogen cycling processes within 82 global datasets. Environmental variables were the strongest predictors of process rates but left 44% of variation unexplained on average, suggesting the potential for microbial data to increase model accuracy. Although only 29% of our datasets were significantly improved by adding information on microbial community structure, we observed improvement in models of processes mediated by narrow phylogenetic guilds via functional gene data, and conversely, improvement in models of facultative microbial processes via community diversity metrics. Our results also suggest that microbial diversity can strengthen predictions of respiration rates beyond microbial biomass parameters, as 53% of models were improved by incorporating both sets of predictors compared to 35% by microbial biomass alone. Our analysis represents the first comprehensive analysis of research examining links between microbial community structure and ecosystem function. Taken together, our results indicate that a greater understanding of microbial communities informed by ecological principles may enhance our ability to predict ecosystem process rates relative to assessments based on environmental variables and microbial physiology.

  13. EMPRESS: A European Project to Enhance Process Control Through Improved Temperature Measurement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearce, J. V.; Edler, F.; Elliott, C. J.; Rosso, L.; Sutton, G.; Andreu, A.; Machin, G.

    2017-08-01

    A new European project called EMPRESS, funded by the EURAMET program `European Metrology Program for Innovation and Research,' is described. The 3 year project, which started in the summer of 2015, is intended to substantially augment the efficiency of high-value manufacturing processes by improving temperature measurement techniques at the point of use. The project consortium has 18 partners and 5 external collaborators, from the metrology sector, high-value manufacturing, sensor manufacturing, and academia. Accurate control of temperature is key to ensuring process efficiency and product consistency and is often not achieved to the level required for modern processes. Enhanced efficiency of processes may take several forms including reduced product rejection/waste; improved energy efficiency; increased intervals between sensor recalibration/maintenance; and increased sensor reliability, i.e., reduced amount of operator intervention. Traceability of temperature measurements to the International Temperature Scale of 1990 (ITS-90) is a critical factor in establishing low measurement uncertainty and reproducible, consistent process control. Introducing such traceability in situ (i.e., within the industrial process) is a theme running through this project.

  14. Enhancing the functional properties and nutritional quality of ice cream with processed amla (Indian gooseberry).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goraya, Rajpreet Kaur; Bajwa, Usha

    2015-12-01

    Amla (Indian gooseberry) and its processed products are rich source of vitamin C, phenols, dietary fibre and antioxidants. In contrast, ice cream is a poor source of these phytochemicals and antioxidants; therefore, the present investigation was undertaken to enhance the functional properties and nutritional quality of ice cream with the incorporation of processed amla. Ice cream was prepared using amla shreds, pulp, preserve and candy at 5 to 20 % and powder at 0.5 to 2.0 % levels in ice cream mix prior to freezing. Inclusion of amla products at augmented levels resulted in significant changes in physico-chemical properties and phytochemical content of ice cream. The total solids decreased on addition of shreds and pulp and increased with preserve, candy and powder in ice cream at increasing levels. The functional constituents i.e. fibre, total phenols, tannins, ascorbic acid and antioxidant activity increased with greater level of inclusion. Incorporation of processed amla raised the melting resistance of ice cream and decreased the overrun. The samples with 5 % shreds and pulp, 10 % preserve and candy and 0.5 % powder were found to have highest overall acceptability scores. Inclusion of amla in all the forms i.e. shreds, pulp, preserve, candy and powder enhanced the functional properties and nutritional value of ice cream.

  15. Solar-Enhanced Advanced Oxidation Processes for Water Treatment: Simultaneous Removal of Pathogens and Chemical Pollutants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oyuna Tsydenova

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The review explores the feasibility of simultaneous removal of pathogens and chemical pollutants by solar-enhanced advanced oxidation processes (AOPs. The AOPs are based on in-situ generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS, most notably hydroxyl radicals •OH, that are capable of destroying both pollutant molecules and pathogen cells. The review presents evidence of simultaneous removal of pathogens and chemical pollutants by photocatalytic processes, namely TiO2 photocatalysis and photo-Fenton. Complex water matrices with high loads of pathogens and chemical pollutants negatively affect the efficiency of disinfection and pollutant removal. This is due to competition between chemical substances and pathogens for generated ROS. Other possible negative effects include light screening, competitive photon absorption, adsorption on the catalyst surface (thereby inhibiting its photocatalytic activity, etc. Besides, some matrix components may serve as nutrients for pathogens, thus hindering the disinfection process. Each type of water/wastewater would require a tailor-made approach and the variables that were shown to influence the processes—catalyst/oxidant concentrations, incident radiation flux, and pH—need to be adjusted in order to achieve the required degree of pollutant and pathogen removal. Overall, the solar-enhanced AOPs hold promise as an environmentally-friendly way to substitute or supplement conventional water/wastewater treatment, particularly in areas without access to centralized drinking water or sewage/wastewater treatment facilities.

  16. Solar-Enhanced Advanced Oxidation Processes for Water Treatment: Simultaneous Removal of Pathogens and Chemical Pollutants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsydenova, Oyuna; Batoev, Valeriy; Batoeva, Agniya

    2015-01-01

    The review explores the feasibility of simultaneous removal of pathogens and chemical pollutants by solar-enhanced advanced oxidation processes (AOPs). The AOPs are based on in-situ generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), most notably hydroxyl radicals •OH, that are capable of destroying both pollutant molecules and pathogen cells. The review presents evidence of simultaneous removal of pathogens and chemical pollutants by photocatalytic processes, namely TiO2 photocatalysis and photo-Fenton. Complex water matrices with high loads of pathogens and chemical pollutants negatively affect the efficiency of disinfection and pollutant removal. This is due to competition between chemical substances and pathogens for generated ROS. Other possible negative effects include light screening, competitive photon absorption, adsorption on the catalyst surface (thereby inhibiting its photocatalytic activity), etc. Besides, some matrix components may serve as nutrients for pathogens, thus hindering the disinfection process. Each type of water/wastewater would require a tailor-made approach and the variables that were shown to influence the processes—catalyst/oxidant concentrations, incident radiation flux, and pH—need to be adjusted in order to achieve the required degree of pollutant and pathogen removal. Overall, the solar-enhanced AOPs hold promise as an environmentally-friendly way to substitute or supplement conventional water/wastewater treatment, particularly in areas without access to centralized drinking water or sewage/wastewater treatment facilities. PMID:26287222

  17. Enhanced Early Neuronal Processing of Food Pictures in Anorexia Nervosa: A Magnetoencephalography Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lauren R. Godier

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuroimaging studies in Anorexia Nervosa (AN have shown increased activation in reward and cognitive control regions in response to food, and a behavioral attentional bias (AB towards food stimuli is reported. This study aimed to further investigate the neural processing of food using magnetoencephalography (MEG. Participants were 13 females with restricting-type AN, 14 females recovered from restricting-type AN, and 15 female healthy controls. MEG data was acquired whilst participants viewed high- and low-calorie food pictures. Attention was assessed with a reaction time task and eye tracking. Time-series analysis suggested increased neural activity in response to both calorie conditions in the AN groups, consistent with an early AB. Increased activity was observed at 150 ms in the current AN group. Neuronal activity at this latency was at normal level in the recovered group; however, this group exhibited enhanced activity at 320 ms after stimulus. Consistent with previous studies, analysis in source space and behavioral data suggested enhanced attention and cognitive control processes in response to food stimuli in AN. This may enable avoidance of salient food stimuli and maintenance of dietary restraint in AN. A later latency of increased activity in the recovered group may reflect a reversal of this avoidance, with source space and behavioral data indicating increased visual and cognitive processing of food stimuli.

  18. Advanced signal processing method for ground penetrating radar feature detection and enhancement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yu; Venkatachalam, Anbu Selvam; Huston, Dryver; Xia, Tian

    2014-03-01

    This paper focuses on new signal processing algorithms customized for an air coupled Ultra-Wideband (UWB) Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) system targeting highway pavements and bridge deck inspections. The GPR hardware consists of a high-voltage pulse generator, a high speed 8 GSps real time data acquisition unit, and a customized field-programmable gate array (FPGA) control element. In comparison to most existing GPR system with low survey speeds, this system can survey at normal highway speed (60 mph) with a high horizontal resolution of up to 10 scans per centimeter. Due to the complexity and uncertainty of subsurface media, the GPR signal processing is important but challenging. In this GPR system, an adaptive GPR signal processing algorithm using Curvelet Transform, 2D high pass filtering and exponential scaling is proposed to alleviate noise and clutter while the subsurface features are preserved and enhanced. First, Curvelet Transform is used to remove the environmental and systematic noises while maintain the range resolution of the B-Scan image. Then, mathematical models for cylinder-shaped object and clutter are built. A two-dimension (2D) filter based on these models removes clutter and enhances the hyperbola feature in a B-Scan image. Finally, an exponential scaling method is applied to compensate the signal attenuation in subsurface materials and to improve the desired signal feature. For performance test and validation, rebar detection experiments and subsurface feature inspection in laboratory and field configurations are performed.

  19. Process oriented knowledge management to enhance process and product quality; Prozessorientiertes Wissensmanagement zur Verbesserung der Prozess- und Produktqualitaet

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanel, G.K.

    2002-07-01

    Knowledge and knowledge management today are viewed as the main success factor for enhancing the process and product quality of organizations, but the practical application of the many theoretical concepts is still difficult owing to the fact that most organizations are unable to identify the organizational compartments where knowledge management can fill an existing knowledge gap. The author presents a strategy for analyzing the knowledge requirements of existing processes in industrial organizations. On this basis, they will be available to select the best suited strategies out of a catalogue of knowledge management methods and tools. [German] Wissen und das Management von Wissen werden zunehmend als der wichtigste Erfolgsfaktor von Unternehmen gesehen, um ihre Prozess- und damit auch ihre Produktqualitaet nachhaltig zu steigern. Trotz der wachsenden Popularitaet von Wissensmanagement gestaltet sich die praktische Anwendung der zahlreich vorhandenen theoretischen Konzepte als aeusserst schwierig. Die Gruende dafuer liegen darin, dass Unternehmen nicht wissen, an welchen Stellen in ihrer Organisation sie einen konkreten Bedarf an Wissen haben, den sie mit Wissensmanagement decken koennen. In der Arbeit wird eine Vorgehensweise vorgestellt, mit deren Hilfe Unternehmen ihre bestehenden Prozesse hinsichtlich ihres Wissensbedarfes analysieren koennen. Auf dieser Basis ist es ihnen moeglich, aus einem Katalog von Wissensmanagement-Methoden und -Werkzeugen diejenigen auszuwaehlen, die fuer sie am besten geeignet sind. (orig.)

  20. Direct monitoring of molecular recognition processes using fluorescence enhancement at colloid-coated microplates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lobmaier, C; Hawa, G; Götzinger, M; Wirth, M; Pittner, F; Gabor, F

    2001-01-01

    Direct monitoring of recognition processes at the molecular level is a valuable tool for studying reaction kinetics to assess affinity constants (e.g. drugs to receptors) and for designing rapid single step immunoassays. Methods currently used to gain information about binding processes predominantly depend on surface plasmon resonance. These systems use excitation with coherent light in attenuated total reflection geometry to obtain discrimination between surface-bound and free molecules in solution. Therefore labeling of the compounds is not necessary, but due to the complexity of the measuring setup the method is rather costly. In this contribution we present a simple method for performing kinetic single step biorecognition assays with fluorophore labeled compounds using the fluorescence enhancement properties of surface bound silver colloids. Silver colloids are bound to standard microplates via silanization of the plastic surface. Fluorophores close to this colloid coated surface show a significant gain in fluorescence compared to fluorophores farther away in the bulk solution. Therefore discrimination between surface bound and free fluorophores is possible and the binding of, for example, fluorophore labeled antibodies to antigens immobilized on the colloid surface results in increasing fluorescence intensity. Utilization of standard microplates makes this method fully compatible with conventional microplate processing and reading devices. Neither excitation with coherent laser light nor ATR geometry is required, the measurement is performed in a standard fluorescence microplate reader in front face geometry with a xenon flash lamp as excitation source. Methods for the preparation of colloid-coated microplates and fluorescence-enhanced biorecognition assays are presented. Additionally the dependence of the system performance on the structure and properties of the metal colloid coated surface is described. A two-component biorecognition model system shows a

  1. A Linearity-Enhanced Time-Domain CMOS Thermostat with Process-Variation Calibration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chun-Chi Chen

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This study proposes a linearity-enhanced time-domain complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS thermostat with process-variation calibration for improving the accuracy, expanding the operating temperature range, and reducing test costs. For sensing temperatures in the time domain, the large characteristic curve of a CMOS inverter markedly affects the accuracy, particularly when the operating temperature range is increased. To enhance the on-chip linearity, this study proposes a novel temperature-sensing cell comprising a simple buffer and a buffer with a thermal-compensation circuit to achieve a linearised delay. Thus, a linearity-enhanced oscillator consisting of these cells can generate an oscillation period with high linearity. To achieve one-point calibration support, an adjustable-gain time stretcher and calibration circuit were adopted for the process-variation calibration. The programmable temperature set point was determined using a reference clock and a second (identical adjustable-gain time stretcher. A delay-time comparator with a built-in customised hysteresis circuit was used to perform a time comparison to obtain an appropriate response. Based on the proposed design, a thermostat with a small area of 0.067 mm2 was fabricated using a TSMC 0.35-μm 2P4M CMOS process, and a robust resolution of 0.05 °C and dissipation of 25 μW were achieved at a sample rate of 10 samples/s. An inaccuracy of −0.35 °C to 1.35 °C was achieved after one-point calibration at temperatures ranging from −40 °C to 120 °C. Compared with existing thermostats, the proposed thermostat substantially improves the circuit area, accuracy, operating temperature range, and test costs.

  2. A linearity-enhanced time-domain CMOS thermostat with process-variation calibration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chun-Chi; Lin, Yi

    2014-10-10

    This study proposes a linearity-enhanced time-domain complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) thermostat with process-variation calibration for improving the accuracy, expanding the operating temperature range, and reducing test costs. For sensing temperatures in the time domain, the large characteristic curve of a CMOS inverter markedly affects the accuracy, particularly when the operating temperature range is increased. To enhance the on-chip linearity, this study proposes a novel temperature-sensing cell comprising a simple buffer and a buffer with a thermal-compensation circuit to achieve a linearised delay. Thus, a linearity-enhanced oscillator consisting of these cells can generate an oscillation period with high linearity. To achieve one-point calibration support, an adjustable-gain time stretcher and calibration circuit were adopted for the process-variation calibration. The programmable temperature set point was determined using a reference clock and a second (identical) adjustable-gain time stretcher. A delay-time comparator with a built-in customised hysteresis circuit was used to perform a time comparison to obtain an appropriate response. Based on the proposed design, a thermostat with a small area of 0.067 mm2 was fabricated using a TSMC 0.35-μm 2P4M CMOS process, and a robust resolution of 0.05 °C and dissipation of 25 μW were achieved at a sample rate of 10 samples/s. An inaccuracy of -0.35 °C to 1.35 °C was achieved after one-point calibration at temperatures ranging from -40 °C to 120 °C. Compared with existing thermostats, the proposed thermostat substantially improves the circuit area, accuracy, operating temperature range, and test costs.

  3. Resonance enhanced laser mass spectrometry for process- and environmental-analysis: Applications and perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmermann, Ralf; Heger, Hans Jörg; Dorfner, Ralph; Boesl, Ulrich; Kettrup, Antonius

    1998-12-01

    Laser induced Resonance-Enhanced Multi-Photon Ionization Time-Of-Flight Mass Spectrometry (REMPI TOFMS) is a highly selective as well as sensitive analytical technique, well suited for species selective, on-line monitoring of trace-substances. In this contribution some analytical applications of a mobile REMPI-TOFMS are presented. This includes REMPI-TOMS on-line analysis of coffee roasting gas and waste incineration flue gas as well as headspace measurements of pulp processing lye or rapid analysis of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons from soil samples via thermal desorption.

  4. Enhanced Tensile Properties of Mg Sheets by a Unique Thermomechanical Processing Method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bian, Mingzhe; Zeng, Zhuoran; Xu, Shiwei; Tang, Weineng; Davies, Christopher H. J.; Birbilis, Nick; Nie, Jian-feng

    2016-12-01

    A unique thermomechanical processing method combining fast rolling with large thickness reduction and short-time annealing (FR-STA) was developed to produce lower-cost magnesium (Mg) sheets with improved tensile properties. Sheets of Mg-3Al-1Zn-0.3Mn (wt pct) and Mg-1Zn-0.2Nd-0.2Zr (wt pct) were produced by FR incorporating large thickness reduction, exhibiting enhanced strength and improved ductility relative to slow rolling with small thickness reduction after STA.

  5. Adsorption characteristics of zinc ions on sodium dodecyl sulfate in process of micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    To separate zinc ions from aqueous solution efficiently, micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration(MEUF) of hollow ultrafiltration membrane was used with sodium dodecyl sulfate(SDS) as surfactant. The formation of micellar and the adsorption mechanism were investigated, including the influence of the ratio of SDS to zinc ions on the micelle quantity, the micelle ratio, the gross adsorptive capacity, the rejection of zinc ions and the adsorption isotherm law. The results show that the rejection rate of zinc ions reaches 97% and the adsorption of zinc ions on SDS conforms to the Langmuir adsorption isotherm and the adsorption is a chemical adsorption process.

  6. Enhancement of tunability of MAPK cascade due to coexistence of processive and distributive phosphorylation mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Jianqiang; Yi, Ming; Yang, Lijian; Wei, Wenbin; Ding, Yiming; Jia, Ya

    2014-03-04

    The processive phosphorylation mechanism becomes important when there is macromolecular crowding in the cytoplasm. Integrating the processive phosphorylation mechanism with the traditional distributive one, we propose a mixed dual-site phosphorylation (MDP) mechanism in a single-layer phosphorylation cycle. Further, we build a degree model by applying the MDP mechanism to a three-layer mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascade. By bifurcation analysis, our study suggests that the crowded-environment-induced pseudoprocessive mechanism can qualitatively change the response of this biological network. By adjusting the degree of processivity in our model, we find that the MAPK cascade is able to switch between the ultrasensitivity, bistability, and oscillatory dynamical states. Sensitivity analysis shows that the theoretical results remain unchanged within a reasonably chosen variation of parameter perturbation. By scaling the reaction rates and also introducing new connections into the kinetic scheme, we further construct a proportion model of the MAPK cascade to validate our findings. Finally, it is illustrated that the spatial propagation of the activated MAPK signal can be improved (or attenuated) by increasing the degree of processivity of kinase (or phosphatase). Our research implies that the MDP mechanism makes the MAPK cascade become a flexible signal module, and the coexistence of processive and distributive phosphorylation mechanisms enhances the tunability of the MAPK cascade.

  7. Food processing strategies to enhance phenolic compounds bioaccessibility and bioavailability in plant-based foods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ribas-Agustí, Albert; Martín-Belloso, Olga; Soliva-Fortuny, Robert; Elez-Martínez, Pedro

    2017-06-13

    Phenolic compounds are important constituents of plant-based foods, as their presence is related to protective effects on health. To exert their biological activity, phenolic compounds must be released from the matrix during digestion in an absorbable form (bioaccessible) and finally absorbed and transferred to the bloodstream (bioavailable). Chemical structure and matrix interactions are some food-related factors that hamper phenolic compounds bioaccessibility and bioavailability, and that can be counteracted by food processing. It has been shown that food processing can induce chemical or physical modifications in food that enhance phenolic compounds bioaccessibility and bioavailability. These changes include: (i) chemical modifications into more bioaccessible and bioavailable forms; (ii) cleavage of covalent or hydrogen bonds or hydrophobic forces that attach phenolic compounds to matrix macromolecules; (iii) damaging microstructural barriers such as cell walls that impede the release from the matrix; and (iv) create microstructures that protect phenolic compounds until they are absorbed. Indeed, food processing can produce degradation of phenolic compounds, however, it is possible to counteract it by modulating the operating conditions in favor of increased bioaccessibility and bioavailability. This review compiles the current knowledge on the effects of processing on phenolic compounds bioaccessibility or bioavailability, while suggesting new guidelines in the search of optimal processing conditions as a step forward towards the design of healthier foods.

  8. The intermediate neutron-capture process and carbon-enhanced metal-poor stars

    CERN Document Server

    Hampel, Melanie; Lugaro, Maria; Meyer, Bradley S

    2016-01-01

    Carbon-enhanced metal-poor (CEMP) stars in the Galactic Halo display enrichments in heavy elements associated with either the s (slow) or the r (rapid) neutron-capture process (e.g., barium and europium respectively), and in some cases they display evidence of both. The abundance patterns of these CEMP-s/r stars, which show both Ba and Eu enrichment, are particularly puzzling since the s and the r processes require neutron densities that are more than ten orders of magnitude apart, and hence are thought to occur in very different stellar sites with very different physical conditions. We investigate whether the abundance patterns of CEMP-s/r stars can arise from the nucleosynthesis of the intermediate neutron-capture process (the i process), which is characterised by neutron densities between those of the s and the r processes. Using nuclear network calculations, we study neutron capture nucleosynthesis at different constant neutron densities n ranging from $10^7$ to $10^{15}$ cm$^{-3}$. With respect to the cl...

  9. Water-processed carbon nanotube/graphene hybrids with enhanced field emission properties

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Song, Meng; Xu, Peng; Wang, Xu; Wu, Huizhen; Wang, Miao, E-mail: peizhao@zju.edu.cn, E-mail: miaowang@css.zju.edu.cn [Department of Physics, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027 (China); Song, Yenan; Li, Zhenhua; Zhao, Pei, E-mail: peizhao@zju.edu.cn, E-mail: miaowang@css.zju.edu.cn [Institute of Applied Mechanics, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310027 (China); Shang, Xuefu [Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212013 (China)

    2015-09-15

    Integrating carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and graphene into hybrid structures provides a novel approach to three dimensional (3D) materials with advantageous properties. Here we present a water-processing method to create integrated CNT/graphene hybrids and test their field emission properties. With an optimized mass ratio of CNTs to graphene, the hybrid shows a significantly enhanced field emission performance, such as turn-on electric field of 0.79 V/μm, threshold electric field of 1.05 V/μm, maximum current density of 0.1 mA/cm{sup 2}, and field enhancement factor of ∼1.3 × 10{sup 4}. The optimized mass ratio for field emission emphasizes the importance of both CNTs and graphene in the hybrid. We also hypothesize a possible mechanism for this enhanced field emission performance from the CNT/graphene hybrid. During the solution treatment, graphene oxide behaves as surfactant sheets for CNTs to form a well dispersed solution, which leads to a better organized 3D structure with more conducting channels for electron transport.

  10. Water-processed carbon nanotube/graphene hybrids with enhanced field emission properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meng Song

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Integrating carbon nanotubes (CNTs and graphene into hybrid structures provides a novel approach to three dimensional (3D materials with advantageous properties. Here we present a water-processing method to create integrated CNT/graphene hybrids and test their field emission properties. With an optimized mass ratio of CNTs to graphene, the hybrid shows a significantly enhanced field emission performance, such as turn-on electric field of 0.79 V/μm, threshold electric field of 1.05 V/μm, maximum current density of 0.1 mA/cm2, and field enhancement factor of ∼1.3 × 104. The optimized mass ratio for field emission emphasizes the importance of both CNTs and graphene in the hybrid. We also hypothesize a possible mechanism for this enhanced field emission performance from the CNT/graphene hybrid. During the solution treatment, graphene oxide behaves as surfactant sheets for CNTs to form a well dispersed solution, which leads to a better organized 3D structure with more conducting channels for electron transport.

  11. Water-processed carbon nanotube/graphene hybrids with enhanced field emission properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Meng; Xu, Peng; Song, Yenan; Wang, Xu; Li, Zhenhua; Shang, Xuefu; Wu, Huizhen; Zhao, Pei; Wang, Miao

    2015-09-01

    Integrating carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and graphene into hybrid structures provides a novel approach to three dimensional (3D) materials with advantageous properties. Here we present a water-processing method to create integrated CNT/graphene hybrids and test their field emission properties. With an optimized mass ratio of CNTs to graphene, the hybrid shows a significantly enhanced field emission performance, such as turn-on electric field of 0.79 V/μm, threshold electric field of 1.05 V/μm, maximum current density of 0.1 mA/cm2, and field enhancement factor of ˜1.3 × 104. The optimized mass ratio for field emission emphasizes the importance of both CNTs and graphene in the hybrid. We also hypothesize a possible mechanism for this enhanced field emission performance from the CNT/graphene hybrid. During the solution treatment, graphene oxide behaves as surfactant sheets for CNTs to form a well dispersed solution, which leads to a better organized 3D structure with more conducting channels for electron transport.

  12. Trouble Shooting and Performance Enhancement in Activated Sludge Process for Treatment of Textile Wastewaters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehali J. Mehta

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The untreated textile wastewater can cause rapid depletion of dissolved oxygen if it is directly discharged into the surface water sources due to its high Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD and Chemical Oxygen Demand(COD value. This paper focuses on various troubles in performance of activated sludge process and performance enhancement by suggesting remedial measures to ensure the proper operation of activated sludge process(ASP.Also, it is noted that modification and alternative use of chemicals such as 45% solution of sodium bisulphate in burnout printing instead of this 15% of acetic acid and 30% sodium bisulphate is mixed to improve the overall efficiency in terms of Chemical Oxygen Demand(COD and Biological Oxygen Demand(BOD.

  13. An analog VLSI implementation of a visual interneuron: enhanced sensory processing through biophysical modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrison, R R; Koch, C

    1999-10-01

    Flies are capable of rapid, coordinated flight through unstructured environments. This flight is guided by visual motion information that is extracted from photoreceptors in a robust manner. One feature of the fly's visual processing that adds to this robustness is the saturation of wide-field motion-sensitive neuron responses with increasing pattern size. This makes the cell's responses less dependent on the sparseness of the optical flow field while retaining motion information. By implementing a compartmental neuronal model in silicon, we add this "gain control" to an existing analog VLSI model of fly vision. This results in enhanced performance in a compact, low-power CMOS motion sensor. Our silicon system also demonstrates that modern, biophysically-detailed models of neural sensory processing systems can be instantiated in VLSI hardware.

  14. An observation on sludge granulation in an enhanced biological phosphorus removal process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ong, Ying Hui; Chua, Adeline Seak May; Lee, Boon Pin; Ngoh, Gek Cheng; Hashim, Mohd Ali

    2012-01-01

    A sequencing batch reactor (SBR) seeded with flocculated sludge and fed with synthetic wastewater was operated for an enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process. Eight weeks after reactor startup, sludge granules were observed. The granules had a diameter of 0.5 to 3.0 mm and were brownish in color and spherical or ellipsoidal in shape. No significant change was observed in sludge granule size when operational pH was changed from 7 to 8. The 208-day continuous operation of the SBR showed that sludge granules were stably maintained with a sludge volume index (SVI) between 30 to 55 mL/g while securing a removal efficiency of 83% for carbon and 97% for phosphorus. Fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) confirmed the enrichment of polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs) in the SBR. The observations of sludge granulation in this study encourage further studies in the development of granules-based EBPR process.

  15. Low temperature enhanced ductility of friction stir processed 5083 aluminum alloy

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Ehab A El-Danaf; Magdy M El-Rayes; Mahmoud S Soliman

    2011-12-01

    Commercial 5083 Al rolled plates were subjected to friction stir processing (FSP) with two different processing parameters, having 430 and 850 rpm tool rotational speed with a single traverse feed rate of 90 mm/min. These FSP conditions resulted in two fine grained microstructures of 0.95 m (430 rpm) and 2.6 m (850 rpm). Tensile elongations were measured at a relatively low temperature of 250°C at three strain rates, and demonstrated that a decrease in grain size resulted in significantly enhanced ductility and lower forming loads. The occurrence of a relatively high value of strain rate sensitivity, of 0.45 for a grain size of 0.95 m, suggests the operation of superplastic deformation under these present experimental conditions.

  16. Enhanced bioavailability of sirolimus via preparation of solid dispersion nanoparticles using a supercritical antisolvent process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kim MS

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Min-Soo Kim1, Jeong-Soo Kim1, Hee Jun Park1, Won Kyung Cho1,3, Kwang-Ho Cha1,3, Sung-Joo Hwang2,31College of Pharmacy, Chungnam National University, Daejeon, Republic of Korea, 2College of Pharmacy, 3Yonsei Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Yonsei University, Incheon, Republic of KoreaBackground: The aim of this study was to improve the physicochemical properties and bioavailability of poorly water-soluble sirolimus via preparation of a solid dispersion of nanoparticles using a supercritical antisolvent (SAS process.Methods: First, excipients for enhancing the stability and solubility of sirolimus were screened. Second, using the SAS process, solid dispersions of sirolimus-polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP K30 nanoparticles were prepared with or without surfactants such as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS, tocopheryl propylene glycol succinate, Sucroester 15, Gelucire 50/13, and Myrj 52. A mean particle size of approximately 250 nm was obtained for PVP K30-sirolimus nanoparticles. Solid state characterization, kinetic solubility, powder dissolution, stability, and pharmacokinetics were analyzed in rats.Results: X-ray diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry, and high-pressure liquid chromatography indicated that sirolimus existed in an anhydrous amorphous form within a solid dispersion of nanoparticles and that no degradation occurred after SAS processing. The improved supersaturation and dissolution of sirolimus as a solid dispersion of nanoparticles appeared to be well correlated with enhanced bioavailability of oral sirolimus in rats. With oral administration of a solid dispersion of PVP K30-SLS-sirolimus nanoparticles, the peak concentration and AUC0→12h of sirolimus were increased by approximately 18.3-fold and 15.2-fold, respectively.Conclusion: The results of this study suggest that preparation of PVP K30-sirolimus-surfactant nanoparticles using the SAS process may be a promising approach for improving the bioavailability of sirolimus

  17. Radiative levitation in carbon-enhanced metal-poor stars with s-process enrichment

    CERN Document Server

    Matrozis, E

    2016-01-01

    A significant fraction of all metal-poor stars are carbon-rich. Most of these carbon-enhanced metal-poor (CEMP) stars also show enhancement in elements produced mainly by the s-process (CEMP-s stars) and evidence suggests that the origin of these non-standard abundances can be traced to mass transfer from a binary asymptotic giant branch (AGB) companion. Thus, observations of CEMP-s stars are commonly used to infer the nucleosynthesis output of low-metallicity AGB stars. A crucial step in this exercise is understanding what happens to the accreted material after mass transfer ceases. Here we present models of the post-mass-transfer evolution of CEMP-s stars considering the physics of thermohaline mixing and atomic diffusion, including radiative levitation. We find that stars with typical CEMP-s star masses (M ~ 0.85 Msun) have very shallow convective envelopes (Menv +4). We are therefore unable to reproduce the spread in the observed abundances with these models and conclude that some other physical process m...

  18. Foodborne Pathogens Prevention and Sensory Attributes Enhancement in Processed Cheese via Flavoring with Plant Extracts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tayel, Ahmed A; Hussein, Heba; Sorour, Noha M; El-Tras, Wael F

    2015-12-01

    Cheese contaminations with foodborne bacterial pathogens, and their health outbreaks, are serious worldwide problems that could happen from diverse sources during cheese production or storage. Plants, and their derivatives, were always regarded as the potential natural and safe antimicrobial alternatives for food preservation and improvement. The extracts from many plants, which are commonly used as spices and flavoring agents, were evaluated as antibacterial agents against serious foodborne pathogens, for example Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella Typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli O157:H7, using qualitative and quantitative assaying methods. Dairy-based media were also used for evaluating the practical application of plant extracts as antimicrobial agents. Most of the examined plant extracts exhibited remarkable antibacterial activity; the extracts of cinnamon, cloves, garden cress, and lemon grass were the most powerful, either in synthetic or in dairy-based media. Flavoring processed cheese with plant extracts resulted in the enhancement of cheese sensory attributes, for example odor, taste, color, and overall quality, especially in flavored samples with cinnamon, lemon grass, and oregano. It can be concluded that plant extracts are strongly recommended, as powerful and safe antibacterial and flavoring agents, for the preservation and sensory enhancement of processed cheese.

  19. Enhanced visible emission from vertically aligned ZnO nanostructures by aqueous chemical growth process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amiruddin, R., E-mail: amirphy9@yahoo.com; Kumar, M.C. Santhosh, E-mail: santhoshmc@nitt.edu

    2014-11-15

    ZnO nanostructures consisting of nanowires and nanorods have been grown by aqueous chemical growth (ACG) process on the ZnO seed layers. ACG process has been carried out for 5 h and 15 h to obtain the one dimensional nanostructures. This ZnO nanostructure comprises mixture of vertically aligned nanorods and nanowires. Structural analysis reveals that the crystal orientation is along (002) plane exhibiting a hexagonal wurtzite structure. The crystallinity of ZnO nanostructures increases after aqueous chemical treatment with respect to the growth duration. Optical studies revealed that when the duration of aqueous chemical treatment is increased, the transmittance of the films decreases considerably. The as-deposited ZnO seed layers exhibit electron carrier concentration of 4.69×10{sup 14} cm{sup −3} and the value increases to 9.44×10{sup 15} cm{sup −3} after 5 h and 1.53×10{sup 16} cm{sup −3} after 15 h of aqueous chemical treatment. It has been observed that ZnO nanostructures exhibit enhanced luminescence properties in visible region which covers the entire visible region of the spectrum. - Highlights: • Mixture of nanorods and nanowires are grown upon same glass substrates. • The grown nanostructures are found to be vertically aligned. • Improved electron carrier concentration is observed. • Luminescence properties of these ZnO nanostructures are highly enhanced.

  20. A Novel Approach to Mineral Carbonation: Enhancing Carbonation While Avoiding Mineral Pretreatment Process Cost

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Andrew V. G. Chizmeshya; Michael J. McKelvy; Kyle Squires; Ray W. Carpenter; Hamdallah Bearat

    2007-06-21

    Known fossil fuel reserves, especially coal, can support global energy demands for centuries to come, if the environmental problems associated with CO{sub 2} emissions can be overcome. Unlike other CO{sub 2} sequestration candidate technologies that propose long-term storage, mineral sequestration provides permanent disposal by forming geologically stable mineral carbonates. Carbonation of the widely occurring mineral olivine (e.g., forsterite, Mg{sub 2}SiO{sub 4}) is a large-scale sequestration process candidate for regional implementation, which converts CO{sub 2} into the environmentally benign mineral magnesite (MgCO{sub 3}). The primary goal is cost-competitive process development. As the process is exothermic, it inherently offers low-cost potential. Enhancing carbonation reactivity is key to economic viability. Recent studies at the U.S. DOE Albany Research Center have established that aqueous-solution carbonation using supercritical CO{sub 2} is a promising process; even without olivine activation, 30-50% carbonation has been achieved in an hour. Mechanical activation (e.g., attrition) has accelerated the carbonation process to an industrial timescale (i.e., near completion in less than an hour), at reduced pressure and temperature. However, the activation cost is too high to be economical and lower cost pretreatment options are needed. We have discovered that robust silica-rich passivating layers form on the olivine surface during carbonation. As carbonation proceeds, these passivating layers thicken, fracture and eventually exfoliate, exposing fresh olivine surfaces during rapidly-stirred/circulating carbonation. We are exploring the mechanisms that govern carbonation reactivity and the impact that (1) modeling/controlling the slurry fluid-flow conditions, (2) varying the aqueous ion species/size and concentration (e.g., Li+, Na+, K+, Rb+, Cl-, HCO{sub 3}{sup -}), and (3) incorporating select sonication offer to enhance exfoliation and carbonation. Thus

  1. A Novel Approach To Mineral Carbonation: Enhancing Carbonation While Avoiding Mineral Pretreatment Process Cost

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Michael J. McKelvy; Andrew V. G. Chizmeshya; Kyle Squires; Ray W. Carpenter; Hamdallah Bearat

    2006-06-21

    Known fossil fuel reserves, especially coal, can support global energy demands for centuries to come, if the environmental problems associated with CO{sub 2} emissions can be overcome. Unlike other CO{sub 2} sequestration candidate technologies that propose long-term storage, mineral sequestration provides permanent disposal by forming geologically stable mineral carbonates. Carbonation of the widely occurring mineral olivine (e.g., forsterite, Mg{sub 2}SiO{sub 4}) is a large-scale sequestration process candidate for regional implementation, which converts CO{sub 2} into the environmentally benign mineral magnesite (MgCO{sub 3}). The primary goal is cost-competitive process development. As the process is exothermic, it inherently offers low-cost potential. Enhancing carbonation reactivity is key to economic viability. Recent studies at the U.S. DOE Albany Research Center have established that aqueous-solution carbonation using supercritical CO{sub 2} is a promising process; even without olivine activation, 30-50% carbonation has been achieved in an hour. Mechanical activation (e.g., attrition) has accelerated the carbonation process to an industrial timescale (i.e., near completion in less than an hour), at reduced pressure and temperature. However, the activation cost is too high to be economical and lower cost pretreatment options are needed. Herein, we report our second year progress in exploring a novel approach that offers the potential to substantially enhance carbonation reactivity while bypassing pretreatment activation. As our second year progress is intimately related to our earlier work, the report is presented in that context to provide better overall understanding of the progress made. We have discovered that robust silica-rich passivating layers form on the olivine surface during carbonation. As carbonation proceeds, these passivating layers thicken, fracture and eventually exfoliate, exposing fresh olivine surfaces during rapidly

  2. A Novel Approach To Mineral Carbonation: Enhancing Carbonation While Avoiding Mineral Pretreatment Process Cost

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Michael J. McKelvy; Andrew V. G. Chizmeshya; Kyle Squires; Ray W. Carpenter; Hamdallah Bearat

    2006-06-21

    Known fossil fuel reserves, especially coal, can support global energy demands for centuries to come, if the environmental problems associated with CO{sub 2} emissions can be overcome. Unlike other CO{sub 2} sequestration candidate technologies that propose long-term storage, mineral sequestration provides permanent disposal by forming geologically stable mineral carbonates. Carbonation of the widely occurring mineral olivine (e.g., forsterite, Mg{sub 2}SiO{sub 4}) is a large-scale sequestration process candidate for regional implementation, which converts CO{sub 2} into the environmentally benign mineral magnesite (MgCO{sub 3}). The primary goal is cost-competitive process development. As the process is exothermic, it inherently offers low-cost potential. Enhancing carbonation reactivity is key to economic viability. Recent studies at the U.S. DOE Albany Research Center have established that aqueous-solution carbonation using supercritical CO{sub 2} is a promising process; even without olivine activation, 30-50% carbonation has been achieved in an hour. Mechanical activation (e.g., attrition) has accelerated the carbonation process to an industrial timescale (i.e., near completion in less than an hour), at reduced pressure and temperature. However, the activation cost is too high to be economical and lower cost pretreatment options are needed. Herein, we report our second year progress in exploring a novel approach that offers the potential to substantially enhance carbonation reactivity while bypassing pretreatment activation. As our second year progress is intimately related to our earlier work, the report is presented in that context to provide better overall understanding of the progress made. We have discovered that robust silica-rich passivating layers form on the olivine surface during carbonation. As carbonation proceeds, these passivating layers thicken, fracture and eventually exfoliate, exposing fresh olivine surfaces during rapidly

  3. Post-Processing Enhancement of Reverberation-Noise Suppression in Dual-Frequency SURF Imaging

    CERN Document Server

    Nasholm, Sven Peter; Angelsen, Bjørn A J; 10.1109/TUFFC.2011.1811

    2013-01-01

    A post-processing adjustment technique which aims for enhancement of dual-frequency SURF (Second order UltRasound Field) reverberation-noise suppression imaging in medical ultrasound is analyzed. Two variant methods are investigated through numerical simulations. They both solely involve post-processing of the propagated high-frequency (HF) imaging wave fields, which in real-time imaging corresponds to post-processing of the beamformed receive radio-frequency signals. Hence the transmit pulse complexes are the same as for the previously published SURF reverberation-suppression imaging method. The adjustment technique is tested on simulated data from propagation of SURF pulse complexes consisting of a 3.5 MHz HF imaging pulse added to a 0.5 low-frequency sound-speed manipulation pulse. Imaging transmit beams are constructed with and without adjustment. The post-processing involves filtering, e.g., by a time-shift, in order to equalize the two SURF HF pulses at a chosen depth. This depth is typically chosen to ...

  4. Moral disengagement and associated processes in performance-enhancing drug use: a national qualitative investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boardley, Ian D; Grix, Jonathan; Dewar, Andrew James

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated psychosocial processes associated with avoidance of health- and morality-based deterrents to performance-enhancing drug (PED) use. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with 64 English male bodybuilders with experience of doping. Resultant data were content analysed deductively using definitions for the eight mechanisms of moral disengagement (MD; Bandura, A. (1991). Social cognitive theory of moral thought and action. In W. M. Kurtines & J. L. Gewirtz (Eds.), Handbook of moral behavior and development: Theory research and applications (pp. 71-129). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.), and three further themes from Boardley and Grix (2013. Doping in bodybuilders: A qualitative investigation of facilitative psychosocial processes. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise, and Health. Advance online publication, doi 10.1080/2159676X.2013.766809). These analyses evidenced six MD mechanisms, and all three of the themes from Boardley and Grix (2013. Doping in bodybuilders: A qualitative investigation of facilitative psychosocial processes. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise, and Health. Advance online publication). Subsequent frequency analyses revealed six of the eight MD mechanisms, and two of the three additional themes, were common across the sample. Overall, the findings suggest MD may help athletes circumvent health- and morality-based deterrents to doping, describe a process linking supplement and PED use and detail how some athletes may actively avoid social censure for doping by only discussing PED use with other PED users from within their training environment.

  5. Social and emotional relevance in face processing: Happy faces of future interaction partners enhance the LPP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian eBublatzky

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Human face perception is modulated by both emotional valence and social relevance, but their interaction has rarely been examined. Event-related brain potentials (ERP to happy, neutral, and angry facial expressions with different degrees of social relevance were recorded. Social relevance was manipulated by presenting pictures of two specific face actors as future interaction partners (meet condition, whereas two other face actors remained non-relevant. As a further control condition all stimuli were presented without specific task instructions (passive viewing condition. A within-subject design (Facial Expression x Relevance x Task was implemented, where randomly ordered face stimuli of four actors (2 women, from the KDEF were presented for 1s to 26 participants (16 female. Results showed an augmented N170, early posterior negativity (EPN, and late positive potential (LPP for emotional in contrast to neutral facial expressions. Of particular interest, face processing varied as a function of instructed social relevance. Whereas the meet condition was accompanied with unspecific effects regardless of relevance (P1, EPN, viewing potential interaction partners was associated with increased LPP amplitudes. The LPP was specifically enhanced for happy facial expressions of the future interaction partners. This underscores that social relevance can impact face processing already at an early stage of visual processing. These findings are discussed within the framework of motivated attention and face processing theories.

  6. Marrying content and process in clinical method teaching: enhancing the Calgary-Cambridge guides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurtz, Suzanne; Silverman, Jonathan; Benson, John; Draper, Juliet

    2003-08-01

    Communication skills training is now internationally accepted as an essential component of medical education. However, learners and teachers in communication skills programs continue to experience problems integrating communication with other clinical skills, ensuring that clinical faculty support and teach communication beyond the formal communication course, extending communication training coherently into clerkship and residency, and applying communication skills in medical practice at a professional level of competence. One factor contributing to these problems is that learners confront two apparently conflicting models of the medical interview: a communication model describing the process of the interview and the "traditional medical history" describing the content of the interview. The resulting confusion exacerbates the above dilemmas and interferes with learners using communication skills training to advantage in real-life practice. The authors propose a comprehensive clinical method that explicitly integrates traditional clinical method with effective communication skills. To implement this more comprehensive approach, they have modified their own Calgary-Cambridge guides to the medical interview by developing three diagrams that visually and conceptually improve the way communication skills teaching is introduced and that place communication process skills within a comprehensive clinical method; devising a content guide for medical interviewing that is more closely aligned with the structure and process skills used in communication skills training; and incorporating patient-centered medicine into both process and content aspects of the medical interview. These enhancements help resolve ongoing difficulties associated with both teaching communication skills and applying them effectively in medical practice.

  7. Enhancement of MgAl2O4 spinel formation from coprecipitated precursor by powder processing

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Soumen Pal; A K Bandyopadhyay; S Mukherjee; B N Samaddar; P G Pal

    2011-07-01

    Although low temperature fast coprecipitation technique has been used to synthesize stoichiometric (MgO–nAl2O3, = 1) MgAl2O4 spinel forming precursor, delayed spinellization has always been the concern in this process. In this article, the precursor of this ‘fast technique’ has been used for bulk production by further processing by high speed mixing with solvents and mechanical activation by attrition milling in terms of superior spinellization. At 1000°C, MgAl2O4 – -Al2O3 solid solution and MgO phases are formed (spinel formed by 1000°C is regarded as primary spinel). At higher temperatures, due to large agglomerate size, MgO can not properly interact with the exsolved -Al2O3 from spinel solid solution to form secondary spinel; and consequently spinellization gets affected. Solvent treatment and attrition milling of the coprecipitated precursor disintegrate the larger agglomerates into smaller size (effect is more in attrition). Then MgO comes in proper contact with exsolved alumina, and therefore total spinel formation (primary + secondary) is enhanced. Extent of spinellization, for processed calcined samples where some alumina exists as solid solution with spinel, can be determined from the percentage conversion of MgO. Analysis of the processed powders suggests that the 4 h attrited precursor is most effective in terms of nano size (< 25 nm) stoichiometric spinel crystallite formation at ≤ 1100°C.

  8. Enhancing Image Processing Performance for PCID in a Heterogeneous Network of Multi-code Processors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linderman, R.; Spetka, S.; Fitzgerald, D.; Emeny, S.

    hundred cores in a round robin fashion. Current efforts toward further performance enhancement for PCID are shifting toward using the Playstations in conjunction with the Xeons to take advantage of outstanding price/performance as well as the Flops/Watt cost advantage. We are fine-tuning the PCID parallization strategy to balance processing over Xeons and Cell BEs to find an optimal partitioning of PCID over the heterogeneous processors. A high performance information management system that exploits native Infiniband multicast is used to improve latency among the head nodes. Using a publication/subscription oriented information management system to implement a unified communications platform makes runs on large HPCs with thousands of intercommunicating cores more flexible and more fault tolerant. It features a loose couplingof publishers to subscribers through intervening brokers. We are also working on enhancing performance for both Xeons and Cell BEs, buy moving selected operations to single precision. Techniques for adapting the code to single precision and performance results are reported.

  9. Microbes as engines of ecosystem function: when does community structure enhance predictions of ecosystem processes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emily B. Graham

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Microorganisms are vital in mediating the earth’s biogeochemical cycles; yet, despite our rapidly increasing ability to explore complex environmental microbial communities, the relationship between microbial community structure and ecosystem processes remains poorly understood. Here, we address a fundamental and unanswered question in microbial ecology: ‘When do we need to understand microbial community structure to accurately predict function?’ We present a statistical analysis investigating the value of environmental data and microbial community structure independently and in combination for explaining rates of carbon and nitrogen cycling processes within 82 global datasets. Environmental variables were the strongest predictors of process rates but left 44% of variation unexplained on average, suggesting the potential for microbial data to increase model accuracy. Although only 29% of our datasets were significantly improved by adding information on microbial community structure, we observed improvement in models of processes mediated by narrow phylogenetic guilds via functional gene data, and conversely, improvement in models of facultative microbial processes via community diversity metrics. Our results also suggest that microbial diversity can strengthen predictions of respiration rates beyond microbial biomass parameters, as 53% of models were improved by incorporating both sets of predictors compared to 35% by microbial biomass alone. Our analysis represents the first comprehensive analysis of research examining links between microbial community structure and ecosystem function. Taken together, our results indicate that a greater understanding of microbial communities informed by ecological principles may enhance our ability to predict ecosystem process rates relative to assessments based on environmental variables and microbial physiology.

  10. Combined humic acid adsorption and enhanced Fenton processes for the treatment of naphthalene dye intermediate wastewater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Lin; Zhu, Nanwen; Wang, Liang; Bing, Xiaoxiao; Chen, Xiaoliang

    2011-12-30

    In this work, an humic acid adsorption with an enhanced Fenton oxidation was employed to treat the real effluent originating from the 1-diazo-2-naphthol-4-sulfonic acid (1,2,4-Acid) production plant. In a first step, humic acid with MgSO(4) was selected as adsorbent and precipitant for physicochemical pretreatment, the synergetic effect had led to 39% of COD removal and 89% of colour removal. A multi-staged Fenton oxidation process with inner circulation was introduced subsequently. The TOC, COD, 1,2,4-Acid, NH(4)(+)-N, SS and colour were reduced from 3024 mg/L, 12,780 mg/L, 9103 mg/L, 110 mg/L, 240 mg/L and 25,600 (multiple) to 46 mg/L, 210 mg/L, 21 mg/L, 16 mg/L, 3 mg/L and 25 through the combined process, respectively. Hydrogen peroxide consumed per kg COD had saved up to 36% when two-staged Fenton process with inner circulation (flow-back to influent ratio: 3) was applied. Influence of H(2)O(2) concentration, flow-back to influent ratio and staged Fenton mode were investigated in detail in order to find out the optimal operating parameters. The kinetics of 1,2,4-Acid degradation by two-staged Fenton process was investigated. The evolution of the main intermediates during the degradation process was conducted using the LC-(ESI)-TOF-MS technique, and the results showed a staged degradation pathway from the ring opening of naphthalene compounds to the formation of benzene compounds and carboxyl acids. The combined process had been proved effective in both technical and economic aspects.

  11. Phenolic-enriched foods: sources and processing for enhanced health benefits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDougall, Gordon J

    2017-05-01

    Polyphenols are ubiquitous secondary products present in many plant foods. Their intake has been associated with health benefits ranging from reduced incidence of CVD, diabetes and cancers to improved neurodegenerative outcomes. Major dietary sources include beverages such as coffee, teas and foods such as chocolate. Fruits are also major sources and berries in particular are a palatable source of a diverse range of polyphenol components. There are a number of ways that polyphenol uptake could be increased and healthier polyphenol-rich foods could be produced with specific compositions to target-specific health effects. Firstly, we could exploit the genetic diversity of plants (with a focus on berries) to select varieties that have enhanced levels of specific polyphenols implicated in disease mitigation (e.g. anthocyanins, tannins or flavonols). Working with variation induced by environmental and agronomic factors, modern molecular breeding techniques could exploit natural variation and beneficially alter polyphenol content and composition, although this could be relatively long term. Alternatively, we could employ a synthetic biology approach and design new plants that overexpress certain genes or re-deploy more metabolic effort into specific polyphenols. However, such 'polyphenol-plus' fruit could prove unpalatable as polyphenols contribute to sensorial properties (e.g. astringency of tannins). However, if the aim was to produce a polyphenol as a pharmaceutical then 'lifting' biosynthetic pathways from plants and expressing them in microbial vectors may be a feasible option. Secondly, we could design processing methods to enhance the polyphenolic composition or content of foods. Fermentation of teas, cocoa beans and grapes, or roasting of cocoa and coffee beans has long been used and can massively influence polyphenol composition and potential bioactivity. Simple methods such as milling, heat treatment, pasteurisation or juicing (v. pureeing) can have notable

  12. Enhancing the effectiveness of clearance for physical activity participation: background and overall process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamnik, Veronica K; Warburton, Darren E R; Makarski, Julie; McKenzie, Donald C; Shephard, Roy J; Stone, James A; Charlesworth, S; Gledhill, Norman

    2011-07-01

    Recent feedback from physical activity (PA) participants, fitness professionals, and physicians has indicated that there are limitations to the utility and effectiveness of the existing PAR-Q and PARmed-X screening tools for PA participation. The aim of this study was to have authorities in exercise and chronic disease management to work with an expert panel to increase the effectiveness of clearance for PA participation using an evidence-based consensus approach and the well-established Appraisal of Guidelines for Research and Evaluation (AGREE) Instrument. Systematic reviews were conducted to develop a new PA clearance protocol involving risk stratification and a decision-tree process. Evidence-based support was sought for enabling qualified exercise professionals to have a direct role in the PA participation clearance process. The PAR-Q+ was developed to use formalized probes to clarify problematic responses and to explore issues arising from currently diagnosed chronic disease or condition. The original PARmed-X tool is replaced with an interactive computer program (ePARmed-X+) to clear prospective PA participants for either unrestricted or supervised PA or to direct them to obtain medical clearance. Evidence-based validation was also provided for the direct role of highly qualified university-educated exercise professionals in the PA clearance process. The risks associated with exercise during pregnancy were also evaluated. The systematic review and consensus process, conforming to the AGREE Instrument, has provided a sound evidence base for enhanced effectiveness of the clearance process for PA participation of both asymptomatic populations and persons with chronic diseases or conditions.

  13. STIMULI-RESPONSIVE POLYMERS WITH ENHANCED EFFICIENCY IN RESERVOIR RECOVERY PROCESSES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Charles McCormick; Roger Hester

    2004-09-30

    This sixth and final progress report for DOE Award Number DE-FC26-01BC15317 describes research during the period March 01, 2004 through August 31, 2004 performed at the University of Southern Mississippi on ''Stimuli Responsive Polymers with Enhanced Efficiency in Reservoir Recovery'' processes. Significantly, terpolymers that are responsive to changes in pH and ionic strength have been synthesized, characterized, and their solution properties have been extensively examined. Terpolymers composed of acrylamide, a carboxylated acrylamido monomer (AMBA), and a quaternary ammonium monomer (AMBATAC) with balanced compositions of the latter two, exhibit increases in aqueous solution viscosity as NaCl concentration is increased. This increase in polymer coil size can be expected upon injection of this type of polymer into oil reservoirs of moderate-to-high salinity, leading to better mobility control. The opposite effect (loss of viscosity) is observed for conventional polymer systems. Additionally polymer mobility characteristics have been conducted for a number of hydrophilic copolymers utilizing an extensional flow apparatus and size exclusion chromatography. This study reveled that oil recovery enhancement through use of polymers in a water flood is due to the polymer's resistance to deformation as it flows through the reservoir. Individual polymers when in aqueous solution form coils. The larger the polymer's coil size, the greater the polymer's resistance to extensional flow and the more effective the polymer is in enhancing oil recovery. Large coil sizes are obtained by increasing the polymer molecular weight and having macromolecular structures that favor greater swelling of the coil by the aqueous solvent conditions (temperature, pH and electrolyte concentration) existing in the reservoir.

  14. Sorption enhanced steam reforming of biomass-derived compounds: process and material

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    He, Li

    2010-07-01

    An attempt has been made to develop a flexible system to produce very pure H{sub 2} with high efficiency from renewable bio-based recourses. First, such model compounds as ethanol, glycerol, sorbitol and glucose, have been tested for H{sub 2} production via sorption enhanced steam reforming (SESR) over Co-Ni/hydrotalcite-like (HTls) derived catalyst and CaO-based CO{sub 2} acceptor. The experimental results show that all of feedstocks, even heavy feedstocks, were able to offer high H{sub 2} purity (97.3approx99.1%) and yield at low steam to carbon (S/C = 1.3approx6) ratio in comparison to the corresponding steam reforming process. In addition, the studied system also presents encouraging potential for improvement of energy efficiency. Chemical looping combustion (CLC) was coupled to the cyclic multi-step SESR process to assist the acceptor regeneration by using multifunctional Pd/Co-Ni/HTls catalyst. With coupling of CLC to SESR, H{sub 2} concentration in the gas effluent of the SESR reactions was still higher than 95 mol% on a dry basis. The assembled CLC-SESR process has inherent high efficiency in H{sub 2} production. (Author)

  15. Micellar enhanced ultrafiltration process for the treatment of olive mill wastewater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Abbassi, Abdelilah; Khayet, Mohamed; Hafidi, Abdellatif

    2011-10-01

    Olive mill wastewater (OMW) is an important environmental pollution problem, especially in the Mediterranean, which is the main olive oil production region worldwide. Environmental impact of OMW is related to its high organic load and particularly to the phytotoxic and antibacterial action of its phenolic content. In fact, polyphenols are known as powerful antioxidants with interesting nutritional and pharmaceutical properties. In the present work, the efficiency of OMW Micellar Enhanced Ultrafiltration (MEUF) treatment for removal and concentration of polyphenols was investigated, using an anionic surfactant (Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate salt, SDS) and a hydrophobic poly(vinyldene fluoride) (PVDF) membrane. The effects of the process experimental conditions on the permeate flux were investigated, and the secondary membrane resistance created by SDS molecules was evaluated. The initial fluxes of OMW processing by MEUF using SDS were 25.7 and 44.5 l/m2 h under transmembrane pressures of 3.5 and 4.5 bar, respectively. The rejection rate of polyphenols without using any surfactant ranged from 5 to 28%, whereas, it reached 74% when SDS was used under optimum pH (pH 2). The MEUF provides a slightly colored permeate (about 88% less dark), which requires clearly less chemical oxygen demand (COD) for its oxidation (4.33% of the initial COD). These results showed that MEUF process can efficiently be applied to the treatment of OMW and for the concentration and recovery of polyphenols.

  16. Deployment of an innovative thermally enhanced soil mixing process augmented with zero-valent iron.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lynch, P. L.

    1999-01-15

    An innovative in-situ soil treatment process, referred to as soil mixing/thermally enhanced soil vapor extraction (SM/TESVE), was used to remediate the 317 Area of Argonne National Laboratory-East (i.e., Argonne), which is contaminated with volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Following the initial soil treatment, polishing was required to reduce residual concentrations of contaminants. A study of polishing methods was conducted. It determined that injecting metallic iron particles into the soil, in conjunction with soil mixing, would reduce residual VOC concentrations more effectively than the original conventional soil ventilation approach. After the effectiveness of iron injection was verified, it replaced the soil ventilation step. The modified process involved mixing the soil while hot air and steam were injected into it. Off-gases were captured in a hood over the treatment area. During this process, an iron slurry, consisting of up to 50% iron particles in water with guar gum added as a thickening agent, was injected and mixed into the soil by the mixing equipment. Approximately 6,246 m{sup 3} (8, 170 yd{sup 3}) of soil was treated during this project. Confirmatory samples were then collected. In these samples, VOC concentrations were usually reduced by more than 80%.

  17. Basal forebrain motivational salience signal enhances cortical processing and decision speed

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvina M Raver

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The basal forebrain (BF contains major projections to the cerebral cortex, and plays a well-documented role in arousal, attention, decision-making, and in modulating cortical activity. BF neuronal degeneration is an early event in Alzheimer’s disease and dementias, and occurs in normal cognitive aging. While the BF is best known for its population of cortically projecting cholinergic neurons, the region is anatomically and neurochemically diverse, and also contains prominent populations of non-cholinergic projection neurons. In recent years, increasing attention has been dedicated to these non-cholinergic BF neurons in order to better understand how non-cholinergic BF circuits control cortical processing and behavioral performance. In this review, we focus on a unique population of putative non-cholinergic BF neurons that encodes the motivational salience of stimuli with a robust ensemble bursting response. We review recent studies that describe the specific physiological and functional characteristics of these BF salience-encoding neurons in behaving animals. These studies support the unifying hypothesis whereby BF salience-encoding neurons act as a gain modulation mechanism of the decision-making process to enhance cortical processing of behaviorally relevant stimuli, and thereby facilitate faster and more precise behavioral responses. This function of BF salience-encoding neurons represents a critical component in determining which incoming stimuli warrant an animal’s attention, and is therefore a fundamental and early requirement of behavioral flexibility.

  18. Temporal processing of audiovisual stimuli is enhanced in musicians: evidence from magnetoencephalography (MEG.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yao Lu

    Full Text Available Numerous studies have demonstrated that the structural and functional differences between professional musicians and non-musicians are not only found within a single modality, but also with regard to multisensory integration. In this study we have combined psychophysical with neurophysiological measurements investigating the processing of non-musical, synchronous or various levels of asynchronous audiovisual events. We hypothesize that long-term multisensory experience alters temporal audiovisual processing already at a non-musical stage. Behaviorally, musicians scored significantly better than non-musicians in judging whether the auditory and visual stimuli were synchronous or asynchronous. At the neural level, the statistical analysis for the audiovisual asynchronous response revealed three clusters of activations including the ACC and the SFG and two bilaterally located activations in IFG and STG in both groups. Musicians, in comparison to the non-musicians, responded to synchronous audiovisual events with enhanced neuronal activity in a broad left posterior temporal region that covers the STG, the insula and the Postcentral Gyrus. Musicians also showed significantly greater activation in the left Cerebellum, when confronted with an audiovisual asynchrony. Taken together, our MEG results form a strong indication that long-term musical training alters the basic audiovisual temporal processing already in an early stage (direct after the auditory N1 wave, while the psychophysical results indicate that musical training may also provide behavioral benefits in the accuracy of the estimates regarding the timing of audiovisual events.

  19. Microbial processes in the Athabasca Oil Sands and their potential applications in microbial enhanced oil recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harner, N K; Richardson, T L; Thompson, K A; Best, R J; Best, A S; Trevors, J T

    2011-11-01

    The Athabasca Oil Sands are located within the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin, which covers over 140,200 km(2) of land in Alberta, Canada. The oil sands provide a unique environment for bacteria as a result of the stressors of low water availability and high hydrocarbon concentrations. Understanding the mechanisms bacteria use to tolerate these stresses may aid in our understanding of how hydrocarbon degradation has occurred over geological time, and how these processes and related tolerance mechanisms may be used in biotechnology applications such as microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR). The majority of research has focused on microbiology processes in oil reservoirs and oilfields; as such there is a paucity of information specific to oil sands. By studying microbial processes in oil sands there is the potential to use microbes in MEOR applications. This article reviews the microbiology of the Athabasca Oil Sands and the mechanisms bacteria use to tolerate low water and high hydrocarbon availability in oil reservoirs and oilfields, and potential applications in MEOR.

  20. ENHANCED CHEMICAL CLEANING: A NEW PROCESS FOR CHEMICALLY CLEANING SAVANNAH RIVER WASTE TANKS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ketusky, E; Neil Davis, N; Renee Spires, R

    2008-01-17

    The Savannah River Site (SRS) has 49 high level waste (HLW) tanks that must be emptied, cleaned, and closed as required by the Federal Facilities Agreement. The current method of chemical cleaning uses several hundred thousand gallons per tank of 8 weight percent (wt%) oxalic acid to partially dissolve and suspend residual waste and corrosion products such that the waste can be pumped out of the tank. This adds a significant quantity of sodium oxalate to the tanks and, if multiple tanks are cleaned, renders the waste incompatible with the downstream processing. Tank space is also insufficient to store this stream given the large number of tanks to be cleaned. Therefore, a search for a new cleaning process was initiated utilizing the TRIZ literature search approach, and Chemical Oxidation Reduction Decontamination--Ultraviolet (CORD-UV), a mature technology currently used for decontamination and cleaning of commercial nuclear reactor primary cooling water loops, was identified. CORD-UV utilizes oxalic acid for sludge dissolution, but then decomposes the oxalic acid to carbon dioxide and water by UV treatment outside the system being treated. This allows reprecipitation and subsequent deposition of the sludge into a selected container without adding significant volume to that container, and without adding any new chemicals that would impact downstream treatment processes. Bench top and demonstration loop measurements on SRS tank sludge stimulant demonstrated the feasibility of applying CORD-UV for enhanced chemical cleaning of SRS HLW tanks.

  1. Temporal processing of audiovisual stimuli is enhanced in musicians: evidence from magnetoencephalography (MEG).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yao; Paraskevopoulos, Evangelos; Herholz, Sibylle C; Kuchenbuch, Anja; Pantev, Christo

    2014-01-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated that the structural and functional differences between professional musicians and non-musicians are not only found within a single modality, but also with regard to multisensory integration. In this study we have combined psychophysical with neurophysiological measurements investigating the processing of non-musical, synchronous or various levels of asynchronous audiovisual events. We hypothesize that long-term multisensory experience alters temporal audiovisual processing already at a non-musical stage. Behaviorally, musicians scored significantly better than non-musicians in judging whether the auditory and visual stimuli were synchronous or asynchronous. At the neural level, the statistical analysis for the audiovisual asynchronous response revealed three clusters of activations including the ACC and the SFG and two bilaterally located activations in IFG and STG in both groups. Musicians, in comparison to the non-musicians, responded to synchronous audiovisual events with enhanced neuronal activity in a broad left posterior temporal region that covers the STG, the insula and the Postcentral Gyrus. Musicians also showed significantly greater activation in the left Cerebellum, when confronted with an audiovisual asynchrony. Taken together, our MEG results form a strong indication that long-term musical training alters the basic audiovisual temporal processing already in an early stage (direct after the auditory N1 wave), while the psychophysical results indicate that musical training may also provide behavioral benefits in the accuracy of the estimates regarding the timing of audiovisual events.

  2. Bidirectional transport by molecular motors: enhanced processivity and response to external forces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Müller, Melanie J I; Klumpp, Stefan; Lipowsky, Reinhard

    2010-06-02

    Intracellular transport along cytoskeletal filaments is often mediated by two teams of molecular motors that pull on the same cargo and move in opposite directions along the filaments. We have recently shown theoretically that this bidirectional transport can be understood as a stochastic tug-of-war between the two motor teams. Here, we further develop our theory to investigate the experimentally accessible dynamic behavior of cargos transported by strong motors such as kinesin-1 or cytoplasmic dynein. By studying the run and binding times of such a cargo, we show that the properties of biological motors, such as the large ratio of stall/detachment force and the small ratio of superstall backward/forward velocity, are favorable for bidirectional cargo transport, leading to fast motion and enhanced diffusion. In addition, cargo processivity is shown to be strongly enhanced by transport via several molecular motors even if these motors are engaged in a tug-of-war. Finally, we study the motility of a bidirectional cargo under force. Frictional forces arising, e.g., from the viscous cytoplasm, lead to peaks in the velocity distribution, while external forces as exerted, e.g., by an optical trap, lead to hysteresis effects. Our results, in particular our explicit expressions for the cargo binding time and the distance of the peaks in the velocity relation under friction, are directly accessible to in vitro as well as in vivo experiments.

  3. Supercritical processed starch nanosponge as a carrier for enhancement of dissolution and pharmacological efficacy of fenofibrate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jadhav, Nitin V; Vavia, Pradeep R

    2017-06-01

    In current study, supercritical processed starch nanosponge (SSNS) used as a carrier for poorly water soluble drug (fenofibrate) to enhance its in-vitro and in-vivo performance. SSNS was prepared by using sol- gel method and effective supercritical drying technique. Fenofibrate was loaded into the SSNS by using solvent immersion method with selected and optimized organic solvent. BET surface area of SSNS was evaluated by nitrogen adsorption/desorption analysis. SSNS and drug loaded SSNS were characterized by DSC, XRPD, FTIR, SEM, Contact angle study and evaluated for in-vitro, in-vivo studies. The results revealed that the formed SSNS material has high surface area (180m2/gm) with pore size (40 nm to 200nm). The DSC and XRPD study revealed the amorphization of drug within a SSNS. SEM study showed the continuous porous structure with differ nanosized pores of SSNS. Contact angle study showed improvement in aqueous wetting property of drug within a SSNS. In-vitro drug release study showed remarkable dissolution enhancement of SSNS formulation as compared to plain drug. In vivo pharmacodynamic study (hyperlipidaemia model) showed SNSS based formulation significantly improved the bioavailability of drug. Thus SSNS carrier system has good potential to be explored as a delivery system for poorly water soluble drugs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Ursolic acid regulates aging process through enhancing of metabolic sensor proteins level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahrami, Soroush Alaghehband; Bakhtiari, Nuredin

    2016-08-01

    We previously reported that Ursolic Acid (UA) ameliorates skeletal muscle performance through satellite cells proliferation and cellular energy status. In studying the potential role of the hypothalamus in aging, we developed a strategy to pursue UA effects on the hypothalamus anti-aging proteins such as; SIRT1, SIRT6, PGC-1β and α-Klotho. In this study, we used a model of aging animals (C57BL/6). UA dissolved in Corn oil (20mg/ml) and then administrated (200mg/Kg i.p injection) to mice, twice daily for 7days. After treatment times, the mice perfused and the hypothalamus isolated for preparing of tissue to Immunofluorescence microscopy. The data illustrated that UA significantly increased SIRT1 (∼3.5±0.3 folds) and SIRT-6 (∼1.5±0.2 folds) proteins overexpression (Presults showed that UA enhanced α-Klotho (∼3.3±0.3) and PGC-1β (∼2.6±0.2 folds) proteins levels (PUA through enhancing of anti-aging biomarkers (SIRT1 and SIRT6) and PGC-1β in hypothalamus regulates aging-process and attenuates mitochondrial-related diseases. In regard to the key role of α-Klotho in aging, our data indicate that UA may be on the horizon to forestall diseases of aging.

  5. Enhancing diversity in science: is teaching science process skills the answer?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dirks, Clarissa; Cunningham, Matthew

    2006-01-01

    The Biology Fellows Program at the University of Washington aims to enhance diversity in science by helping students succeed in the rigorous introductory biology classes and motivating them to engage in undergraduate research. The composite Scholastic Achievement Test scores and high school grade point averages of the Biology Fellows are comparable to those of students who are not in the program; however, they earn, on average, higher grades in introductory biology classes than non-Biology Fellows. Underrepresented minorities and disadvantaged students in the program also earn higher grades in the introductory biology classes than do their non-Biology Fellows counterparts. Analysis of the performance of Biology Fellows shows that the program assists students who are not proficient in certain science process skills and that students who lack these skills are at risk for failing introductory biology. This evaluation provides insight for designing programs that aim to enhance the performance of beginning students of biology, particularly for underrepresented minorities, who want to obtain a life science degree.

  6. Micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration process (MEUF) for removing copper from synthetic wastewater containing ligands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chuan-Kun; Li, Chi-Wang; Lin, Ching-Yu

    2004-11-01

    The effects of the type and concentration of ligands on the removal of Cu by micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration (MEUF) with the help of either anionic or cationic surfactants were investigated. The removal efficiency of copper by anionic surfactant-(SDS-) MEUF depends on the ligand-to-Cu ratio and the ligand-to-Cu complexation constant. At fixed ligand-to-Cu ratio, the Cu removal efficiency decreases in the order of citric acid>NTA>EDTA, which is the reverse order of Cu-ligand complexation constants for these ligands. Increasing SDS-ligand ratios from 12 to 60 at fixed ligand concentration did not improve copper removal efficiency. The cationic surfactant, CPC, enhances Cu removal efficiency in systems with condition of ligand-copper ratios higher than 1.0, where Cu removal is not very efficient using SDS-MEUF process. The Cu removal efficiency with CPC-MEUF depends on both the ligand-to-Cu ratio and the type of ligands.

  7. Enhanced anthocyanin extraction from red cabbage using pulsed electric field processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gachovska, Tanya; Cassada, David; Subbiah, Jeyamkondan; Hanna, Milford; Thippareddi, Harshavardhan; Snow, Daniel

    2010-08-01

    This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of pulsed electric field (PEF) treatment on anthocyanin extraction from red cabbage using water as a solvent. Mashed cabbage was placed in a batch treatment chamber and subjected to PEF (2.5 kV/cm electric field strength; 15 micros pulse width and 50 pulses, specific energy 15.63 J/g). Extracted anthocyanin concentrations (16 to 889 microg/mL) were determined using HPLC. Heat and light stabilities of the control and PEF-treated samples, having approximately the same initial concentrations, were studied. PEF treatments enhanced total anthocyanin extraction in water from red cabbage by 2.15 times with a higher proportion of nonacylated forms than the control (P light stabilities of the PEF-treated samples and control samples were not significantly different (P > 0.05). Practical Application: An innovative pretreatment technology, pulsed electric field processing, enhanced total anthocyanin extraction in water from red cabbage by 2.15 times. Manufacturers of natural colors can use this technology to extract anthocyanins from red cabbage efficiently.

  8. [Microcystin safety study during Cyanobacteria removal by pressure enhanced coagulation process].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Xin-Yue; Luan, Qing; Cong, Hai-Bing; Xu, Si-Tao; Liu, Yu-Jiao; Zhu, Xue-Yuan

    2014-11-01

    Pressure enhanced coagulation and sedimentation technique is an effective way for blue algae treatment. It is not clear whether Cyanobacteria balloon rupture will cause Cyanobacteria cells rupture, resulting in high intracellular concentrations of microcystin LR leak into the water, affecting drinking water safety. Therefore, in this study experimental comparative study of pressure and pre-oxidation of water containing Cyanobacteria was carried out to examine the microcystin LR concentration changes and Cyanobacteria removal efficiency. The results showed that microcystin concentration increase was not significant by the pre-treatment with Cyanobacteria water pressure, while the pre-oxidation process caused a significant increase in the concentration of microcystin. After 0.5-0.8 MPa pressure coagulation and sedimentation, removal of Cyanobacteria basically was over 90%, up to 93.5%, while the removal rate by pre-oxidation was low and unstable. Effluent turbidity is also significantly better in the pre-pressure method than the pre-oxidation. The results indicated that pressure enhanced coagulation is a safe and reliable method for Cyanobacteria removal.

  9. Processing of diamond enhanced cemented tungsten carbide insert for rock drilling

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Bao-chang; SUN You-hong; ZHANG Zu-pei

    2004-01-01

    This paper introduced the structure, component and sintering procedure of the Diamond/WC-Co composite insert fabricated by high pressure and high temper ature (HPHT) method as well as by hot pressing method. In HPHT method, to avoid breakage and delamination of the diamond layer, two transition layers were added between the most outer diamond layer and the WC-Co body. The transition layers compensate for differences in thermal expansion coefficient and elastic modulus of diamond layer and WC-Co substrate. Thus reduces the residual stress induced by cooling the inserts from sintering temperature to room temperature. In hot pressing method, to decrease sintering temperature so as to protect diamond, an active sintering process which achieved by adding nickel and phosphorus into the starting mixed powder is adopted. To increase the toughness of the inserts to resist breakage, proper amount of rare earth compound, LaNi5 and CeO2, are added into the original mixed powder, too. Laboratory tests indicated that both of the diamond enhanced inserts fabricated by HPHT method and by hot pressing method have relatively high hardness and impact toughness, while their wear resistance is about hundreds of times greater than that of conventional cemented tungsten carbide inserts. The results of field drilling test indicated that the diamond enhanced inserts can meet the demands of rotary percussion drilling.

  10. Optimization of the anaerobic treatment of a waste stream from an enhanced oil recovery process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alimahmoodi, Mahmood; Mulligan, Catherine N

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this work was to optimize the anaerobic treatment of a waste stream from an enhanced oil recovery (EOR) process. The treatment of a simulated waste water containing about 150 mg chemical oxygen demand (COD)/L of total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) and the saturation level of CO2 was evaluated. A two-step anaerobic system was undertaken in the mesophilic temperature range (30-40°C). The method of evolutionary operation EVOP factorial design was used to optimize pH, temperature and organic loading rate with the target parameters of CO2 reduction and CH4 production in the first reactor and TPH removal in the second reactor. The results showed 98% methanogenic removal of CO2 and CH4 yield of 0.38 L/gCOD in the first reactor and 83% TPH removal in the second reactor. In addition to enhancing CO2 and TPH removal and CH4 production, application of this method showed the degree of importance of the operational variables and their interactive effects for the two reactors in series. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Microwave enhanced electroanalysis of formulations: processes in micellar media at glassy carbon and at platinum electrodes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghanem, Mohamed A; Compton, Richard G; Coles, Barry A; Canals, Antonio; Marken, Frank

    2005-10-01

    The direct electroanalysis of complex formulations containing alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E) is possible in micellar solution and employing microwave-enhanced voltammetry. In the presence of microwave radiation substantial heating and current enhancement effects have been observed at 330 microm diameter glassy carbon electrodes placed into a micellar aqueous solution and both hydrophilic and highly hydrophobic redox systems are detected. For the water soluble Fe(CN)(6)(3-/4-) redox system in micellar aqueous solutions of 0.1 M NaCl and 0.1 M sodium dodecylsulfate (SDS) at low to intermediate microwave power, thermal effects and convection effects are observed. At higher microwave power, thermal cavitation is induced and dominates the mass transport at the electrode surface. For the micelle-soluble redox systems tert-butylferrocene and 2,5-di-tert-butyl-1,4-benzoquinone, strong and concentration dependent current responses are observed only in the presence of microwave radiation. For the oxidation of micelle-soluble alpha-tocopherol current responses at glassy carbon electrodes are affected by adsorption and desorption processes whereas at platinum electrodes, analytical limiting currents are obtained over a wide range of alpha-tocopherol concentrations. However, for the determination of alpha-tocopherol in a commercial formulation interference from proteins is observed at platinum electrodes and direct measurements are possible only over a limited concentration range and at glassy carbon electrodes.

  12. Modelling and Enhancement of Organizational Resilience Potential in Process Industry SMEs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Slavko Arsovski

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The business environment is rapidly changing and puts pressure on enterprises to find effective ways to survive and develop. Since it is almost impossible to identify the multitude of complex conditions and business risks, an organization has to build its resilience in order to be able to overcome issues and achieve long term sustainability. This paper contributes by establishing a two-step model for assessment and enhancement of organizational resilience potential oriented towards Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs in the process industry. Using a dynamic modelling technique and statistical tools, a sample of 120 SMEs in Serbia has been developed as a testing base, and one randomly selected enterprise was used for model testing and verification. Uncertainties regarding the relative importance of organizational resilience potential factors (ORPFs and their value at each level of business are described by pre-defined linguistic expressions. The calculation of the relative importance of ORPFs for each business level is stated as a fuzzy group decision making problem. First, the weighted ORPFs’ values and resilience potential at each business level are determined. In the second step, near optimal enhancement of ORPFs’ values is achieved by applying a genetic algorithm (GA.

  13. Radiation-enhanced thermal processes during implantation of gold into copper

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perret, N.E.; King, B.V.; Dastoor, P.C. [Newcastle Univ., NSW (Australia). Dept. of Physics

    1996-12-31

    A copper (100) single crystal has been implanted with gold ions at temperatures ranging from 133 K to 673 K. Rutherford Backscattering Spectroscopy (RBS) has been used to observe the changes in the gold implant distribution that occur as a function of the sample temperature during implantation. Two distinct effects have been observed. Firstly the gold implant distribution, as a function of depth, broadens with sample temperature. This broadening of the gold depth profile is most marked at temperatures above 473 K. Secondly, the gold is implanted deeper into the copper crystal as the sample temperature is increased. These results are discussed in terms of radiation enhanced diffusion and radiation-induced segregation processes. 10 refs., 3 figs.

  14. Folates in Asian noodles: III. Fortification, impact of processing, and enhancement of folate intakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bui, Lan T T; Small, Darryl M

    2007-06-01

    Asian noodles, a widely consumed staple food, were evaluated as potential vehicles for fortification with folic acid. Samples of white salted, yellow alkaline, and instant noodles, prepared under controlled laboratory conditions, were fortified and folates were measured at each stage of processing using a microbiological assay. Although the 3 styles showed differing patterns of retention, overall losses were slightly more than 40% and were similar for all styles. White salted and yellow alkaline noodles showed no significant decrease in total folate content during production. In contrast, significant losses occurred for instant noodles during steaming and deep-frying of the noodle strands. In all cases, substantial losses occurred during subsequent cooking of the dried noodles. Fortification at a rate of 50% of the reference value per serving resulted in retention of folate at levels corresponding to 30% following cooking, whereas unfortified noodles contributed less than 4% per serving. It is concluded that fortifying Asian noodles provides an effective means for enhancing folate intake.

  15. Class II transactivator (CIITA enhances cytoplasmic processing of HIV-1 Pr55Gag.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristen A Porter

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The Pr55(gag (Gag polyprotein of HIV serves as a scaffold for virion assembly and is thus essential for progeny virion budding and maturation. Gag localizes to the plasma membrane (PM and membranes of late endosomes, allowing for release of infectious virus directly from the cell membrane and/or upon exocytosis. The host factors involved in Gag trafficking to these sites are largely unknown. Upon activation, CD4+ T cells, the primary target of HIV infection, express the class II transcriptional activator (CIITA and therefore the MHC class II isotype, HLA-DR. Similar to Gag, HLA-DR localizes to the PM and at the membranes of endosomes and specialized vesicular MHC class II compartments (MIICs. In HIV producer cells, transient HLA-DR expression induces intracellular Gag accumulation and impairs virus release. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we demonstrate that both stable and transient expression of CIITA in HIV producer cells does not induce HLA-DR-associated intracellular retention of Gag, but does increase the infectivity of virions. However, neither of these phenomena is due to recapitulation of the class II antigen presentation pathway or CIITA-mediated transcriptional activation of virus genes. Interestingly, we demonstrate that CIITA, apart from its transcriptional effects, acts cytoplasmically to enhance Pr160(gag-pol (Gag-Pol levels and thereby the viral protease and Gag processing, accounting for the increased infectivity of virions from CIITA-expressing cells. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study demonstrates that CIITA enhances HIV Gag processing, and provides the first evidence of a novel, post-transcriptional, cytoplasmic function for a well-known transactivator.

  16. Insertion of the T3 DNA polymerase thioredoxin binding domain enhances the processivity and fidelity of Taq DNA polymerase

    OpenAIRE

    2003-01-01

    Insertion of the T3 DNA polymerase thioredoxin binding domain (TBD) into the distantly related thermostable Taq DNA polymerase at an analogous position in the thumb domain, converts the Taq DNA polymerase from a low processive to a highly processive enzyme. Processivity is dependent on the presence of thioredoxin. The enhancement in processivity is 20–50-fold when compared with the wild-type Taq DNA polymerase or to the recombinant polymerase in the absence of thioredoxin. The recombinant Taq...

  17. Statistics-enhanced multistage process models for integrated design &manufacturing of poly (vinyl alcohol) treated buckypaper

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Kan

    Carbon nanotube (CNT) is considered a promising engineering material because of its exceptional mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties. Buckypaper (BP), a thin sheet of assembled CNTs, is an effective way to handle CNTs in macro scale. Pristine BP is a fragile material which is held together by weak van der Waals attractions among CNTs. This dissertation introduces a modified filtration based manufacturing process which uses poly (vinyl alcohol) (PVA) to treat BP. This treatment greatly improves the handleability of BP, reduces the spoilage during transferring, and shortens the production time. The multistage manufacturing process of PVA-treated BP is discussed in this dissertation, and process models are developed to predict the nanostructure of final products from the process parameters. Based on the nanostructure, a finite element based physical model for prediction of Young's modulus is also developed. This accuracy of this physical model is further improved by statistical methods. The aim of this study is to investigate and improve the scalability of the manufacturing process of PVA-treated BP. To achieve this goal, various statistical tools are employed. The unique issues in nanomanufacturing also motivate the development of new statistical tools and modification of existing tools. Those issues include the uncertainties in nanostructure characterization due to the scale, limited number experimental data due to high cost of raw materials, large variation in final product due to the random nature in structure, and the high complexity in physical models due to the small scale of structural building blocks. This dissertation addresses those issues by combining engineering field knowledge and statistical methods. The resulting statistics-enhanced physical model provides an approach to design the manufacturing process of PVA-treated BP for a targeting property and tailor the robustness of the final product by manipulating the process parameters. In addition

  18. Bacterial strains from floodplain soils perform different plant-growth promoting processes and enhance cowpea growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine Martins da Costa

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Certain nodulating nitrogen-fixing bacteria in legumes and other nodule endophytes perform different plant-growth promoting processes. The objective of this study was to evaluate 26 bacterial strains isolated from cowpea nodules grown in floodplain soils in the Brazilian savannas, regarding performance of plant-growth promoting processes and ability to enhance cowpea growth. We also identified these strains by 16S rRNA sequencing. The following processes were evaluated: free-living biological nitrogen fixation (BNF, solubilization of calcium, aluminum and iron phosphates and production of indole-3-acetic acid (IAA. The abilities to nodulate and promote cowpea growth were evaluated in Leonard jars. Partial sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene identified 60 % of the strains as belonging to genus Paenibacillus. The following four genera were also identified: Bacillus, Bradyrhizobium, Enterobacter and Pseudomonas. None of the strains fixed N2 free-living. Among the strains, 80 % solubilized Ca phosphate and one solubilized Al phosphate and none solubilized Fe phosphate. The highest IAA concentrations (52.37, 51.52 and 51.00 μg mL−1 were obtained in the 79 medium with tryptophan by Enterobacter strains UFPI B5-7A, UFPI B5-4 and UFPI B5-6, respectively. Only eight strains nodulated cowpea, however, all increased production of total dry matter. The fact that the strains evaluated perform different biological processes to promote plant growth indicates that these strains have potential use in agricultural crops to increase production and environmental sustainability.

  19. Investment Processes in the Industrial Region: Current Status and Prospects of Enhancing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kumaneeva Mariya Konstantinovna

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The trends and direction of investment processes are the most important features of regional development. In modern conditions we observe the grave shortage of investment resources in the priority areas of industrialization. Despite the overall increase of investment volume, the investments in the production of high-tech products which have key value for the acceleration of industrialization continue to decline steadily. This process reveals itself urgently in the industrial regions of Russia. According to expert estimates, about two-thirds of investment savings are spent on the development of the mining sector. Under these conditions, the degradation of industrial structure is enhanced, the “scattering” of investment resources takes place as well as the increase of deficit in the industries which are the most priority and perspective for the development of the country. Therefore, the study of the efficiency of investment processes in the industrial region, as well as the existing models of investing in fixed assets represents an urgent task. The article describes the groups of economic sectors in Kemerovo region in terms of investments efficiency and the type of their financing. The results of the research showed that the nominal increase in the investments flow into the region’s economy does not always lead to a real investment increase. Otherwise speaking, under the inflationary pressures we can observe the actual effect of different scale for different sectors of regional economy. The author reveals that the lowest efficiency of investment in fixed assets is typical for the sectors of Kemerovo region’s economy, where the investment activity is determined by the existing public and regional policy. The articles contains the directions of investment processes intensification for the sectors of the Kemerovo region’s economy, taking into account the strategic development priorities and revealed efficiency of investments in fixed assets.

  20. Bitter-tasting and kokumi-enhancing molecules in thermally processed avocado (Persea americana Mill.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Degenhardt, Andreas Georg; Hofmann, Thomas

    2010-12-22

    Sequential application of solvent extraction and RP-HPLC in combination with taste dilution analyses (TDA) and comparative TDA, followed by LC-MS and 1D/2D NMR experiments, led to the discovery of 10 C(17)-C(21) oxylipins with 1,2,4-trihydroxy-, 1-acetoxy-2,4-dihydroxy-, and 1-acetoxy-2-hydroxy-4-oxo motifs, respectively, besides 1-O-stearoyl-glycerol and 1-O-linoleoyl-glycerol as bitter-tasting compounds in thermally processed avocado (Persea americana Mill.). On the basis of quantitative data, dose-over-threshold (DoT) factors, and taste re-engineering experiments, these phytochemicals, among which 1-acetoxy-2-hydroxy-4-oxo-octadeca-12-ene was found with the highest taste impact, were confirmed to be the key contributors to the bitter off-taste developed upon thermal processing of avocado. For the first time, those C(17)-C(21) oxylipins exhibiting a 1-acetoxy-2,4-dihydroxy- and a 1-acetoxy-2-hydroxy-4-oxo motif, respectively, were discovered to induce a mouthfulness (kokumi)-enhancing activity in sub-bitter threshold concentrations.

  1. Bioelectrochemically-assisted anaerobic composting process enhancing compost maturity of dewatered sludge with synchronous electricity generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Hang; Jiang, Junqiu; Zhao, Qingliang; Wang, Kun; Zhang, Yunshu; Zheng, Zhen; Hao, Xiaodi

    2015-10-01

    Bioelectrochemically-assisted anaerobic composting process (AnCBE) with dewatered sludge as the anode fuel was constructed to accelerate composting of dewatered sludge, which could increase the quality of the compost and harvest electric energy in comparison with the traditional anaerobic composting (AnC). Results revealed that the AnCBE yielded a voltage of 0.60 ± 0.02 V, and total COD (TCOD) removal reached 19.8 ± 0.2% at the end of 35 d. The maximum power density was 5.6 W/m(3). At the end of composting, organic matter content (OM) reduction rate increased to 19.5 ± 0.2% in AnCBE and to 12.9 ± 0.1% in AnC. The fuzzy comprehensive assessment (FCA) result indicated that the membership degree of class I of AnCBE compost (0.64) was higher than that of AnC compost (0.44). It was demonstrated that electrogenesis in the AnCBE could improve the sludge stabilization degree, accelerate anaerobic composting process and enhance composting maturity with bioelectricity generation.

  2. Microbubble enhanced ozonation process for advanced treatment of wastewater produced in acrylic fiber manufacturing industry

    KAUST Repository

    Zheng, Tianlong

    2015-02-02

    This work investigated microbubble-ozonation for the treatment of a refractory wet-spun acrylic fiber wastewater in comparison to macrobubble-ozonation. CODcr, NH3-N, and UV254 of the wastewater were removed by 42%, 21%, and 42%, respectively in the microbubble-ozonation, being 25%, 9%, and 35% higher than the removal rates achieved by macrobubble-ozonation at the same ozone dose. The microbubbles (with average diameter of 45μm) had a high concentration of 3.9×105 counts/mL at a gas flow rate of 0.5L/min. The gas holdup, total ozone mass-transfer coefficient, and average ozone utilization efficiency in the microbubble-ozonation were 6.6, 2.2, and 1.5 times higher than those of the macrobubble-ozonation. Greater generation of hydroxyl radicals and a higher zeta potential of the bubbles were also observed in the microbubble ozonation process. The biodegradability of the wastewater was also significantly improved by microbubble-ozonation, which was ascribed to the enhanced degradation of alkanes, aromatic compounds, and the many other bio-refractory organic compounds in the wastewater. Microbubble-ozonation can thus be a more effective treatment process than traditional macrobubble-ozonation for refractory wastewater produced by the acrylic fiber manufacturing industry.

  3. Enhancing memory performance after organic brain disease relies on retrieval processes rather than encoding or consolidation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hildebrandt, Helmut; Gehrmann, Annika; Modden, Claudia; Eling, Paul

    2011-02-01

    Neuropsychological rehabilitation of memory performance is still a controversial topic, and rehabilitation studies have not analyzed to which stage of memory processing (encoding, consolidation, or retrieval) enhancement may be attributed. We first examined the efficacy of a computer training program for stroke patients, based on a previous study (Hildebrandt, Clausing, Janssen, & Modden, 2007a) for memory-impaired patients of a rehabilitation unit and compared it with the standard group treatment. In a second randomized controlled experiment, we trained two groups of 15 patients with mild to moderate memory disorders, caused by organic brain lesions, with the same two treatment approaches. We used several standard tests to analyze improvement of memory functions, focusing on separate parameters for encoding, consolidation, and retrieval. We developed for that purpose a new word-list learning test, which allowed assessment of response to novelty and a systematic comparison of free recall after learning of semantically structured and nonstructured word lists. The first treatment experiment showed significant improvement of verbal learning for patients treated with the computer software program. The second experiment showed that memory improvement was based exclusively on retrieval processes, whereas no specific change was found for encoding and consolidation. However, the two groups of the second experiment showed no significant differences for the treatment, although the absolute scores pointed in the same direction as in the first experiment.

  4. Learning enhances the relative impact of top-down processing in the visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makino, Hiroshi; Komiyama, Takaki

    2015-08-01

    Theories have proposed that, in sensory cortices, learning can enhance top-down modulation by higher brain areas while reducing bottom-up sensory drives. To address circuit mechanisms underlying this process, we examined the activity of layer 2/3 (L2/3) excitatory neurons in the mouse primary visual cortex (V1) as well as L4 excitatory neurons, the main bottom-up source, and long-range top-down projections from the retrosplenial cortex (RSC) during associative learning over days using chronic two-photon calcium imaging. During learning, L4 responses gradually weakened, whereas RSC inputs became stronger. Furthermore, L2/3 acquired a ramp-up response temporal profile, potentially encoding the timing of the associated event, which coincided with a similar change in RSC inputs. Learning also reduced the activity of somatostatin-expressing inhibitory neurons (SOM-INs) in V1 that could potentially gate top-down inputs. Finally, RSC inactivation or SOM-IN activation was sufficient to partially reverse the learning-induced changes in L2/3. Together, these results reveal a learning-dependent dynamic shift in the balance between bottom-up and top-down information streams and uncover a role of SOM-INs in controlling this process.

  5. Design of a production process to enhance optical performance of 3ω optics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prasad, Rahul R.; Bruere, Justin R.; Halpin, John M.; Lucero, Phil; Mills, Steven; Bernacil, Michael; Hackel, Richard P.

    2004-06-01

    Using the Phoenix pre-production conditioning facility we have shown that raster scanning of 3ω optics using a XeF excimer laser and mitigation of the resultant damage sites with a CO2 laser can enhance their optical damage resistance. Several large-scale (43 cm x 43 cm) optics have been processed in this facility. A production facility capable of processing several large optics a week has been designed based on our experience in the pre-production facility. The facility will be equipped with UV conditioning lasers -- 351-nm XeF excimer lasers operating at 100 Hz and 23 ns. The facility will also include a CO2 laser for damage mitigation, an optics stage for raster scanning large-scale optics, a damage mapping system (DMS) that images large-scale optics and can detect damage sites or precursors as small as ~15 μm, and two microscopes to image damage sites with ~5 μm resolution. The optics will be handled in a class 100 clean room, within the facility that will be maintained at class 1000.

  6. A comparative study of the bacterial community in denitrifying and traditional enhanced biological phosphorus removal processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lv, Xiao-Mei; Shao, Ming-Fei; Li, Chao-Lin; Li, Ji; Gao, Xin-Lei; Sun, Fei-Yun

    2014-09-17

    Denitrifying phosphorus removal is an attractive wastewater treatment process due to its reduced carbon source demand and sludge minimization potential. Two lab-scale sequencing batch reactors (SBRs) were operated in alternating anaerobic-anoxic (A-A) or anaerobic-oxic (A-O) conditions to achieve denitrifying enhanced biological phosphate removal (EBPR) and traditional EBPR. No significant differences were observed in phosphorus removal efficiencies between A-A SBR and A-O SBR, with phosphorus removal rates being 87.9% and 89.0% respectively. The community structures in denitrifying and traditional EBPR processes were evaluated by high-throughput sequencing of the PCR-amplified partial 16S rRNA genes from each sludge. The results obtained showed that the bacterial community was more diverse in A-O sludge than in A-A sludge. Taxonomy and β-diversity analyses indicated that a significant shift occurred in the dominant microbial community in A-A sludge compared with the seed sludge during the whole acclimation phase, while a slight fluctuation was observed in the abundance of the major taxonomies in A-O sludge. One Dechloromonas-related OTU outside the 4 known Candidatus "Accumulibacter" clades was detected as the main OTU in A-A sludge at the stationary operation, while Candidatus "Accumulibacter" dominated in A-O sludge.

  7. Roles of extracellular polymeric substances in enhanced biological phosphorus removal process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wen-Wei; Zhang, Hai-Ling; Sheng, Guo-Ping; Yu, Han-Qing

    2015-12-01

    Enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process is known to mainly rely on the ability of phosphorus-accumulating organisms to take up, transform and store excess amount of phosphorus (P) inside the cells. However, recent studies have revealed considerable accumulation of P also in the extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) of sludge, implying a non-negligible role of EPS in P removal by EBPR sludge. However, the contribution of EPS to P uptake and the forms of accumulated extracellular P vary substantially in different studies, and the underlying mechanism of P transformation and transportation in EPS remains poorly understood. This review provides a new recognition into the P removal process in EBPR system by incorporating the role of EPS. It overviews on the characteristics of P accumulation in EPS, explores the mechanism of P transformation and transportation in EBPR sludge and EPS, summarizes the main influential factors for the P-accumulation properties of EPS, and discusses the remaining knowledge gaps and needed future efforts that may lead to better understanding and use of such an EPS role for maximizing P recovery from wastewater. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Enhancer of Rudimentary Homolog Affects the Replication Stress Response through Regulation of RNA Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kavanaugh, Gina; Zhao, Runxiang; Guo, Yan; Mohni, Kareem N.; Glick, Gloria; Lacy, Monica E.; Hutson, M. Shane; Ascano, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Accurate replication of DNA is imperative for the maintenance of genomic integrity. We identified Enhancer of Rudimentary Homolog (ERH) using a whole-genome RNA interference (RNAi) screen to discover novel proteins that function in the replication stress response. Here we report that ERH is important for DNA replication and recovery from replication stress. ATR pathway activity is diminished in ERH-deficient cells. The reduction in ATR signaling corresponds to a decrease in the expression of multiple ATR pathway genes, including ATR itself. ERH interacts with multiple RNA processing complexes, including splicing regulators. Furthermore, splicing of ATR transcripts is deficient in ERH-depleted cells. Transcriptome-wide analysis indicates that ERH depletion affects the levels of ∼1,500 transcripts, with DNA replication and repair genes being highly enriched among those with reduced expression. Splicing defects were evident in ∼750 protein-coding genes, which again were enriched for DNA metabolism genes. Thus, ERH regulation of RNA processing is needed to ensure faithful DNA replication and repair. PMID:26100022

  9. Pure Nanoscale Morphology Effect Enhancing the Energy Storage Characteristics of Processable Hierarchical Polypyrrole.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wannapob, Rodtichoti; Vagin, Mikhail Yu; Jeerapan, Itthipon; Mak, Wing Cheung

    2015-11-03

    We report a new synthesis approach for the precise control of wall morphologies of colloidal polypyrrole microparticles (PPyMPs) based on a time-dependent template-assisted polymerization technique. The resulting PPyMPs are water processable, allowing the simple and direct fabrication of multilevel hierarchical PPyMPs films for energy storage via a self-assembly process, whereas convention methods creating hierarchical conducting films based on electrochemical polymerization are complicated and tedious. This approach allows the rational design and fabrication of PPyMPs with well-defined size and tunable wall morphology, while the chemical composition, zeta potential, and microdiameter of the PPyMPs are well characterized. By precisely controlling the wall morphology of the PPyMPs, we observed a pure nanoscale morphological effect of the materials on the energy storage performance. We demonstrated by controlling purely the wall morphology of PPyMPs to around 100 nm (i.e., thin-walled PPyMPs) that the thin-walled PPyMPs exhibit typical supercapacitor characteristics with a significant enhancement of charge storage performance of up to 290% compared to that of thick-walled PPyMPs confirmed by cyclic voltametry, galvanostatic charge-discharge, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy. We envision that the present design concept could be extended to different conducting polymers as well as other functional organic and inorganic dopants, which provides an innovative model for future study and understanding of the complex physicochemical phenomena of energy-related materials.

  10. DESIGN OF A CONTROL SYSTEM TO ENHANCE PROCESS PERFOMANCE IN THE PRODUCTION OF SORGHUM BEER

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CATHERINE MAWARE

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Breweries in Zimbabwe use limited or no control systems at all. The aim of this study was to design a control system for monitoring and controlling mashing and cooling processes during production of a sorghum beer brewing. The design of the control circuit was done using sensors and controllers. For temperature control a PID controller was used. The system was able to raise the temperature of the mash to 50°C for 50 minutes for hydrolysis of protein, β glucons and pentasons by proteolic enzymes. The temperature was then raised to 80°C and maintained constant for 10 minutes for optimal activity of β-amylase. It was then raised to 95°C for the optimal activity of α- amylase. Finally, the temperature was raised to 100°C and was held constant for 60 minutes for enzyme inactivation. The control system designed in this study enhanced the process performance in the brewing of a sorghum beer.

  11. Enhancing Photocatalytic Performance through Tuning the Interfacial Process between -Assembled and Pt-Loaded Microspheres

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Zhang

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This work reports on a simple two-step approach to rutile TiO2-assembled microspheres loaded by Pt with an aim to tune semiconductor-metal interfacial processes for enhancing the photocatalytic performance. Systematic sample characterizations and structural analysis indicate that Pt loading did not produce any significant influences on the lattice structure of TiO2-assembled microspheres. Instead, upon Pt loading, Schottky barrier was formed in the interfaces between microspheres and Pt nanoparticles, which inhabited efficiently the recombination of photo-generated electron-hole pairs essential for the photocatalytic activities. In addition, TiO2 microspheres also showed a capacity of electrons storage and releasing as represented by a high dielectric constant, which increased the utility rate of photogenerated electrons. All these structural advantages contribute to the excellent photocatalytic activity under ultraviolet light irradiation. The interfacial process between microspheres and Pt nanoparticles was further tuned through adjusting the loading Pt content of metal Pt. As a consequence, the best photocatalytic activity on TiO2 was obtained at 0.85 wt% Pt loading, above or below which photocatalytic activity was apparently decreased.

  12. Effectiveness evaluation methodology for safety processes to enhance organisational culture in hazardous installations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mengolini, A; Debarberis, L

    2008-06-30

    Safety performance indicators are widely collected and used in hazardous installations. The IAEA, OECD and other international organisations have developed approaches that strongly promote deployment of safety performance indicators. These indicators focus mainly on operational performance, but some of them also address organisational and safety culture aspects. However, operators of hazardous installations, in particular those with limited resources and time constraints, often find it difficult to collect the large number of different safety performance indicators. Moreover, they also have difficulties with giving a meaning to the numbers and trends recorded, especially to those that should reflect a positive safety culture. In this light, the aim of this article is to address the need to monitor and assess progress on implementation of a programme to enhance safety and organisational culture. It proposes a specific process-view approach to effectiveness evaluation of organisational and safety culture indicators by means of a multi-level system in which safety processes and staff involvement in defining improvement activities are central. In this way safety becomes fully embedded in staff activities. Key members of personnel become directly involved in identifying and supplying leading indicators relating to their own daily activity and become responsible and accountable for keeping the measurement system alive. Besides use of lagging indicators, particular emphasis is placed on the importance of identifying and selecting leading indicators which can be used to drive safety performance for organisational and safety culture aspects as well.

  13. Significantly Enhanced Actuation Performance of IPMC by Surfactant-Assisted Processable MWCNT/Nafion Composite

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Qingsong He; Min Yu; Dingshan Yu; Yan Ding; Zhendong Dai

    2013-01-01

    The performance of Ionic Polymer Metal Composite (IPMC) actuator was significantly enhanced by incorporating surfactant-assisted processable Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotubes (MWCNTs) into a Nation solution.Cationic surfactant Cetyl Trimethyl Ammonium Bromide (CTAB) was employed to disperse MWCNTs in the Nation matrix,forming a homogeneous and stable dispersion of nanotubes.The processing did not involve any strong acid treatment and thus effectively preserved the excellent electronic properties associated with MWCNT.The as-obtained MWCNT/Nafion-IPMC actuator was tested in terms of conductivity,bulk and surface morphology,blocking force and electric current.It was shown that the blocking force and the current of the new IPMC are 2.4 times and 1.67 times higher compared with a pure Nation-based IPMC.Moreover,the MWCNT/IPMC performance is much better than previously reported Nafion-IPMC doped by acid-treated MWCNT.Such significantly improved performance should be attributed to the improvement of electrical property associated with the addition of MWCNTs without acid treatment.

  14. Efficiency enhancement in solution processed organic and organic-inorganic perovskite solar cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Zhengguo

    Solution processed thin film photovoltaic devices are one of the most promising renewable energy sources. Organic solar cells have been intensively studied due to their advantages of light-weight, flexibility and low-cost materials and manufacturing. The organic-inorganic hybrid perovskite materials have recently shown great potential application in solar cells. The PCE increased dramatically from 3.8% in 2009 to a certified efficiency of 20.1% in 2014. In this dissertation, we focus on the efficiency enhancement for solution processed organic and organic-inorganic solar cells. In Chapter 2, I demonstrated that the crystallinity of the ferroelectric polymer P(VDF-TrFE) at the organic active layer/ electrode interface plays a critical role in the efficiency enhancement of organic solar cells. Then, The ferroelectric P(VDF-TrFE) nanocrystals was synthesized and successfully applied in the low band gap polymers. A high efficiency of 6.8% was achieved in the PCDTBT:PCBM system. Another small polar molecule, TPACA, was also applied to increase the efficiency of organic solar cells. In Chapter 3, I developed a universal approach of solvent fluxing to fabricate graded bulk heterojunction (BHJ) polymer:fullerene films to increase the device efficiency. The solvent fluxing process can extract part of the fullerene inside the BHJ film to the top surface to form graded BHJ. The PCE of the devices after solvent fluxing is increased by 15%--50% compared with the control devices without solvent fluxing. In Chapter 5, a two-step spin coating approach was developed to fabricate the continuous and compact organolead trihalide perovskite (OTP) films. The average PCE of methylammonium lead iodide (MAPbI3) perovskite devices reached 14.5% and 85% of the devices had efficiency above 14%. In Chapter 6, I discovered that the solvent annealing can be used to increase the grain size and crystallinity of the perovskite films. The highest device efficiency reached 15.6%, and device

  15. Chemical and morphological characterization of sugarcane bagasse submitted to a delignification process for enhanced enzymatic digestibility

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rezende Camila

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In recent years, biorefining of lignocellulosic biomass to produce multi-products such as ethanol and other biomaterials has become a dynamic research area. Pretreatment technologies that fractionate sugarcane bagasse are essential for the successful use of this feedstock in ethanol production. In this paper, we investigate modifications in the morphology and chemical composition of sugarcane bagasse submitted to a two-step treatment, using diluted acid followed by a delignification process with increasing sodium hydroxide concentrations. Detailed chemical and morphological characterization of the samples after each pretreatment condition, studied by high performance liquid chromatography, solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance, diffuse reflectance Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy, is reported, together with sample crystallinity and enzymatic digestibility. Results Chemical composition analysis performed on samples obtained after different pretreatment conditions showed that up to 96% and 85% of hemicellulose and lignin fractions, respectively, were removed by this two-step method when sodium hydroxide concentrations of 1% (m/v or higher were used. The efficient lignin removal resulted in an enhanced hydrolysis yield reaching values around 100%. Considering the cellulose loss due to the pretreatment (maximum of 30%, depending on the process, the total cellulose conversion increases significantly from 22.0% (value for the untreated bagasse to 72.4%. The delignification process, with consequent increase in the cellulose to lignin ratio, is also clearly observed by nuclear magnetic resonance and diffuse reflectance Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy experiments. We also demonstrated that the morphological changes contributing to this remarkable improvement occur as a consequence of lignin removal from the sample. Bagasse unstructuring is favored by the loss of cohesion between

  16. Radiative levitation in carbon-enhanced metal-poor stars with s-process enrichment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matrozis, E.; Stancliffe, R. J.

    2016-07-01

    A significant fraction of all metal-poor stars are carbon-rich. Most of these carbon-enhanced metal-poor (CEMP) stars also show enhancement in elements produced mainly by the s-process (CEMP-s stars), and evidence suggests that the origin of these non-standard abundances can be traced to mass transfer from a binary asymptotic giant branch (AGB) companion. Thus, observations of CEMP-s stars are commonly used to infer the nucleosynthesis output of low-metallicity AGB stars. A crucial step in this exercise is understanding what happens to the accreted material after mass transfer ceases. Here we present models of the post-mass-transfer evolution of CEMP-s stars considering the physics of thermohaline mixing and atomic diffusion, including radiative levitation. We find that stars with typical CEMP-s star masses, M ≈ 0.85 M⊙, have very shallow convective envelopes (Menv ≲ 10-7 M⊙). Hence, the surface abundance variations arising from the competition between gravitational settling and radiative levitation should be orders of magnitude larger than observed (e.g. [C/Fe] +4). Lower-mass stars (M ≈ 0.80 M⊙) retain thicker convective envelopes and thus show variations more in line with observations, but are generally too unevolved (log g > 4) when they reach the age of the Universe. We are therefore unable to reproduce the spread in the observed abundances with these models and conclude that some other physical process must largely suppress atomic diffusion in the outer layers of CEMP-s stars. We demonstrate that this could be achieved by some additional (turbulent) mixing process operating at the base of the convective envelope, as found by other authors. Alternatively, mass-loss rates around 10-13 M⊙yr-1 could also negate most of the abundance variations by eroding the surface layers and forcing the base of the convective envelope to move inwards in mass. Since atomic diffusion cannot have a substantial effect on the surface abundances of CEMP-s stars, the

  17. Modelling and optimization of film thickness variation for plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waddell, Ewan; Gibson, Des; Lin, Li; Fu, Xiuhua

    2011-09-01

    This paper describes a method for modelling film thickness variation across the deposition area within plasma enhanced chemical vapour deposition (PECVD) processes. The model enables identification and optimization of film thickness uniformity sensitivities to electrode configuration, temperature, deposition system design and gas flow distribution. PECVD deposition utilizes a co-planar 300mm diameter electrodes with separate RF power matching to each electrode. The system has capability to adjust electrode separation and electrode temperature as parameters to optimize uniformity. Vacuum is achieved using dry pumping with real time control of butterfly valve position for active pressure control. Comparison between theory and experiment is provided for PECVD of diamond-like-carbon (DLC) deposition onto flat and curved substrate geometries. The process utilizes butane reactive feedstock with an argon carrier gas. Radiofrequency plasma is used. Deposited film thickness sensitivities to electrode geometry, plasma power density, pressure and gas flow distribution are demonstrated. Use of modelling to optimise film thickness uniformity is demonstrated. Results show DLC uniformity of 0.30% over a 200 mm flat zone diameter within overall electrode diameter of 300mm. Thickness uniformity of 0.75% is demonstrated over a 200mm diameter for a non-conformal substrate geometry. Use of the modelling method for PECVD using metal-organic chemical vapour deposition (MOCVD) feedstock is demonstrated, specifically for deposition of silica films using metal-organic tetraethoxy-silane. Excellent agreement between experimental and theory is demonstrated for conformal and non-conformal geometries. The model is used to explore scalability of PECVD processes and trade-off against film thickness uniformity. Application to MEMS, optical coatings and thin film photovoltaics is discussed.

  18. Enhanced vapor-phase processing in fluorinated Fe4 single-molecule magnets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rigamonti, Luca; Piccioli, Marco; Malavolti, Luigi; Poggini, Lorenzo; Mannini, Matteo; Totti, Federico; Cortigiani, Brunetto; Magnani, Agnese; Sessoli, Roberta; Cornia, Andrea

    2013-05-20

    A new tetrairon(III) single-molecule magnet with enhanced volatility and processability was obtained by partial fluorination of the ancillary β-diketonato ligands. Fluorinated proligand Hpta = pivaloyltrifluoroacetone was used to assemble the bis(alkoxido)-bridged dimer [Fe2(OEt)2(pta)4] (1) in crystalline form, from which the new tetranuclear complex [Fe4(L)2(pta)6] (2) was synthesized in a one-pot reaction with H3L = 2-hydroxymethyl-2-phenylpropane-1,3-diol, NaOEt, and FeCl3 in a Et2O:EtOH solvent mixture. The structure of compound 2 was inferred from (1)H NMR, mass spectrometry, magnetic measurements, and DFT calculations. Direct current magnetic data are consistent with the expected metal-centered triangular topology for the iron(III) ions, with an antiferromagnetic coupling constant J = 16.20(6) cm(-1) between the central iron and the peripheral ones and consequent stabilization of an S = 5 spin ground state. Alternating current (ac) susceptibility measurements in 0 and 1 kOe static applied fields show the presence of a thermally activated process for magnetic relaxation, with τ0 = 2.3(1) 10(-7) s and U(eff)/kB = 9.9(1) K at zero static field and τ0 = 2.0(2) 10(-7) s and U(eff)/kB = 13.0(2) K at 1 kOe. At a pressure of 10(-7) mbar, compound 2 sublimates at (440 ± 5) K vs (500 ± 10) K for the nonfluorinated variant [Fe4(L)2(dpm)6] (Hdpm = dipivaloylmethane). According to XPS, ToF-SIMS, and ac susceptibility studies, the chemical composition, fragmentation pattern, and slow magnetic relaxation of the pristine material are retained in sublimated samples, suggesting that the molecular structure remains totally unaffected upon vapor-phase processing.

  19. Exploring Ultrahigh Magnetic Field Processing of Materials for Developing Customized Microstructures and Enhanced Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ludtka, GERALD M.

    2005-03-31

    Thermodynamic calculations based on Gibbs free energy in the magnetization-magnetic intensity-temperature (M-H-T) magnetic equation of state space demonstrate that significantly different phase equilibria may result for those material systems where the product and parent phases exhibit different magnetization responses. These calculations show that the Gibbs free energy is changed by a factor equal to -MdH, where M and H are the magnetization and applied field strength, respectively. Magnetic field processing is directly applicable to a multitude of alloys and compounds for dramatically influencing phase stability and phase transformations. This ability to selectively control microstructural stability and alter transformation kinetics through appropriate selection of the magnetic field strength promises to provide a very robust mechanism for developing and tailoring enhanced microstructures (and even nanostructures through accelerated kinetics) with superior properties for a broad spectrum of material applications. For this Industrial Materials for the Future (IMF) Advanced Materials for the Future project, ferrous alloys were studied initially since this alloy family exhibits ferromagnetism over part of its temperature range of stability and therefore would demonstrate the maximum impact of this novel processing mechanism. Additionally, with these ferrous alloys, the high-temperature parent phase, austenite, exhibits a significantly different magnetization response from the potential product phases, ferrite plus carbide or martensite; and therefore, the solid-state transformation behavior of these alloys will be dramatically influenced by the presence of ultrahigh magnetic fields. Finally, a thermodynamic calculation capability (within ThermoCalc for example) was developed during this project to enable parametric studies to be performed to predict the magnitude of the influence of magnetic processing variables on the phase stability (phase diagrams) in

  20. An Intensified Vibratory Milling Process for Enhancing the Breakage Kinetics during the Preparation of Drug Nanosuspensions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Meng; Zhang, Lu; Davé, Rajesh N; Bilgili, Ecevit

    2016-04-01

    As a drug-sparing approach in early development, vibratory milling has been used for the preparation of nanosuspensions of poorly water-soluble drugs. The aim of this study was to intensify this process through a systematic increase in vibration intensity and bead loading with the optimal bead size for faster production. Griseofulvin, a poorly water-soluble drug, was wet-milled using yttrium-stabilized zirconia beads with sizes ranging from 50 to 1500 μm at low power density (0.87 W/g). Then, this process was intensified with the optimal bead size by sequentially increasing vibration intensity and bead loading. Additional experiments with several bead sizes were performed at high power density (16 W/g), and the results were compared to those from wet stirred media milling. Laser diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry, and dissolution tests were used for characterization. Results for the low power density indicated 800 μm as the optimal bead size which led to a median size of 545 nm with more than 10% of the drug particles greater than 1.8 μm albeit the fastest breakage. An increase in either vibration intensity or bead loading resulted in faster breakage. The most intensified process led to 90% of the particles being smaller than 300 nm. At the high power intensity, 400 μm beads were optimal, which enhanced griseofulvin dissolution significantly and signified the importance of bead size in view of the power density. Only the optimally intensified vibratory milling led to a comparable nanosuspension to that prepared by the stirred media milling.

  1. Vibratory shear enhanced membrane process and its application in starch wastewater recycle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazi Sarwar Hasan

    2002-11-01

    Full Text Available Membrane application in wastewater is gaining significant popularity. Selecting the right membrane and filtration technique is an important consideration to ensure a successful system development and long term performance. A new type of membrane filtration technology known as ‘Vibratory Shear Enhanced Process’ (VSEP is introduced in this paper with some test results that has been conducted with VSEP pilot unit to recycle starch wastewater. Conventional cross flow membrane process used in wastewater application always led to rapid fouling. This loss in throughput capacity is primarily due to the formation of a layer that builds up naturally on the membranes surface during the filtration process. In addition to cutting down on the flux performance of the membrane, this boundary or gel layer acts as a secondary membrane reducing the native design selectivity of the membrane in use. This inability to handle the buildup of solids has also limited the use of membranes to low-solids feed streams. In a VSEP system, an additional shear wave produced by the membrane’s vibration cause solids and foulants to be lifted off the membrane surface and remixed with the bulk material flowing through the membrane stack. This high shear processing exposes the membrane pores for maximum throughput that is typically between 3 to10 times the throughput of conventional cross-flow systems. The short term results with raw starch wastewater shows very stable flux rate of 110 lmh using the VSEP system and selecting the PVDF ultrafiltration membrane with no pre-filtration.

  2. Enhanced Efficiency in Plastic Solar Cells via Energy Matched Solution Processed NiOx Interlayers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steirer, K. Xerxes [Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO (United States); Ndione, Paul F. [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States). National Center for Photovoltaics; Widjonarko, N. Edwin [Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States). Dept. of Physics; Lloyd, Matthew T. [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States). National Center for Photovoltaics; Meyer, Jens [Princeton Univ., NJ (United States). Electrical Engineering Dept.; Ratcliff, Erin L. [Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States). Dept. of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Center for Interface Science: Solar Electric Materials (CISSEM); Kahn, Antoine [Princeton Univ., NJ (United States). Electrical Engineering Dept.; Armstrong, Neal R. [Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States). Dept. of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Center for Interface Science: Solar Electric Materials (CISSEM); Curtis, Calvin J. [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States). National Center for Photovoltaics; Ginley, David S. [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States). National Center for Photovoltaics; Berry, Joseph J. [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States). National Center for Photovoltaics; Olson, Dana C. [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States). National Center for Photovoltaics

    2011-07-18

    We show enhanced efficiency and stability of a high performance organic solar cell (OPV) when the work-function of the hole collecting indium-tin oxide (ITO) contact, modified with a solution-processed nickel oxide (NiOx) hole-transport layer (HTL), is matched to the ionization potential of the donor material in a bulk-heterojunction solar cell. Addition of the NiOx HTL to the hole collecting contact results in a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 6.7%, which is a 17.3% net increase in performance over the 5.7% PCE achieved with a poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) HTL on ITO. The impact of these NiOx films is evaluated through optical and electronic measurements as well as device modeling. The valence and conduction band energies for the NiOx HTL are characterized in detail through photoelectron spectroscopy studies while spectroscopic ellipsometry is used to characterize the optical properties. Oxygen plasma treatment of the NiOx HTL is shown to provide superior contact properties by increasing the ITO/NiOx contact work-function by 500 meV. Enhancement of device performance is attributed to reduction of the band edge energy offset at the ITO/NiOx interface with the poly(N-9'-heptadecanyl-2,7-carbazole-alt-5,5-(4',7'-di-2-thienyl-2',1',3'-benzothidiazole) (PCDTBT):[6,6]-phenyl-C61 butyric acid methyl ester PCBM and [6,6]-phenyl-C71 butyric acid methyl ester (PC₇₀BM) active layer. A high work-function hole collecting contact is therefore the appropriate choice for high ionization potential donor materials in order to maximize OPV performance.

  3. Enhanced Efficiency in Plastic Solar Cells via Energy Matched Solution Processed NiOx Interlayers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Steirer, K. Xerxes; Ndione, Paul F.; Widjonarko, N. Edwin; Lloyd, Matthew T.; Meyer, Jens; Ratcliff, Erin L.; Kahn, Antoine; Armstrong, Neal R.; Curtis, Calvin J.; Ginley, David S.; Berry, Joseph J.; Olson, Dana C.

    2011-07-18

    We show enhanced efficiency and stability of a high performance organic solar cell (OPV) when the work-function of the hole collecting indium-tin oxide (ITO) contact, modified with a solution-processed nickel oxide (NiOx) hole-transport layer (HTL), is matched to the ionization potential of the donor material in a bulk-heterojunction solar cell. Addition of the NiOx HTL to the hole collecting contact results in a power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 6.7%, which is a 17.3% net increase in performance over the 5.7% PCE achieved with a poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):poly(styrenesulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) HTL on ITO. The impact of these NiOx films is evaluated through optical and electronic measurements as well as device modeling. The valence and conduction band energies for the NiOx HTL are characterized in detail through photoelectron spectroscopy studies while spectroscopic ellipsometry is used to characterize the optical properties. Oxygen plasma treatment of the NiOx HTL is shown to provide superior contact properties by increasing the ITO/NiOx contact work-function by 500 meV. Enhancement of device performance is attributed to reduction of the band edge energy offset at the ITO/NiOx interface with the poly(N-9'-heptadecanyl-2,7-carbazole-alt-5,5-(4',7'-di-2-thienyl-2',1',3'-benzothidiazole) (PCDTBT):[6,6]-phenyl-C61 butyric acid methyl ester PCBM and [6,6]-phenyl-C71 butyric acid methyl ester (PC70BM) active layer. A high work-function hole collecting contact is therefore the appropriate choice for high ionization potential donor materials in order to maximize OPV performance.

  4. Enhanced Chemical Cleaning: A New Process for Chemically Cleaning Savannah River Waste Tanks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ketusky, Edward; Spires, Renee; Davis, Neil

    2009-02-11

    At the Savannah River Site (SRS) there are 49 High Level Waste (HLW) tanks that eventually must be emptied, cleaned, and closed. The current method of chemically cleaning SRS HLW tanks, commonly referred to as Bulk Oxalic Acid Cleaning (BOAC), requires about a half million liters (130,000 gallons) of 8 weight percent (wt%) oxalic acid to clean a single tank. During the cleaning, the oxalic acid acts as the solvent to digest sludge solids and insoluble salt solids, such that they can be suspended and pumped out of the tank. Because of the volume and concentration of acid used, a significant quantity of oxalate is added to the HLW process. This added oxalate significantly impacts downstream processing. In addition to the oxalate, the volume of liquid added competes for the limited available tank space. A search, therefore, was initiated for a new cleaning process. Using TRIZ (Teoriya Resheniya Izobretatelskikh Zadatch or roughly translated as the Theory of Inventive Problem Solving), Chemical Oxidation Reduction Decontamination with Ultraviolet Light (CORD-UV{reg_sign}), a mature technology used in the commercial nuclear power industry was identified as an alternate technology. Similar to BOAC, CORD-UV{reg_sign} also uses oxalic acid as the solvent to dissolve the metal (hydr)oxide solids. CORD-UV{reg_sign} is different, however, since it uses photo-oxidation (via peroxide/UV or ozone/UV to form hydroxyl radicals) to decompose the spent oxalate into carbon dioxide and water. Since the oxalate is decomposed and off-gassed, CORD-UV{reg_sign} would not have the negative downstream oxalate process impacts of BOAC. With the oxalate destruction occurring physically outside the HLW tank, re-precipitation and transfer of the solids, as well as regeneration of the cleaning solution can be performed without adding additional solids, or a significant volume of liquid to the process. With a draft of the pre-conceptual Enhanced Chemical Cleaning (ECC) flowsheet, taking full

  5. Modeling and model-aware signal processing methods for enhancement of optical systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aksoylar, Aydan

    Theoretical and numerical modeling of optical systems are increasingly being utilized in a wide range of areas in physics and engineering for characterizing and improving existing systems or developing new methods. This dissertation focuses on determining and improving the performance of imaging and non-imaging optical systems through modeling and developing model-aware enhancement methods. We evaluate the performance, demonstrate enhancements in terms of resolution and light collection efficiency, and improve the capabilities of the systems through changes to the system design and through post-processing techniques. We consider application areas in integrated circuit (IC) imaging for fault analysis and malicious circuitry detection, and free-form lens design for creating prescribed illumination patterns. The first part of this dissertation focuses on sub-surface imaging of ICs for fault analysis using a solid immersion lens (SIL) microscope. We first derive the Green's function of the microscope and use it to determine its resolution limits for bulk silicon and silicon-on-insulator (SOI) chips. We then propose an optimization framework for designing super-resolving apodization masks that utilizes the developed model and demonstrate the trade-offs in designing such masks. Finally, we derive the full electromagnetic model of the SIL microscope that models the image of an arbitrary sub-surface structure. With the rapidly shrinking dimensions of ICs, we are increasingly limited in resolving the features and identifying potential modifications despite the resolution improvements provided by the state-of-the-art microscopy techniques and enhancement methods described here. In the second part of this dissertation, we shift our focus away from improving the resolution and consider an optical framework that does not require high resolution imaging for detecting malicious circuitry. We develop a classification-based high-throughput gate identification method that utilizes

  6. Interaction of processes may explain induced seismicity after shut-in in Enhanced Geothermal Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Simone, Silvia; Carrera, Jesus; Vilarrasa, Victor

    2015-04-01

    Deep fluid injection is a necessary operation in several engineering sectors, like geothermal energy production, natural gas storage, CO2 storage, etc. The seismicity associated to these activities has, in some occasions, reached unexpected magnitude, raising public concern. Moreover, the occurrence of such seismicity after the injection shut-in pointed out the incompleteness of the knowledge and the inability of fully managing these processes. On the other hand, the growing attention toward clean energy makes it clear that we cannot abandon these procedures, which have a huge potential. Therefore, deeply understanding the mechanisms that induce seismicity is crucial. In this study we consider hydraulic stimulation of deep geothermal systems and analyze the mechanisms that may induce or trigger seismicity. Given that the basic mechanism is fluid pressure increase, secondary triggering processes have been studied. In detail, we attempt to identify the potential mechanisms that may trigger seismicity in the post-injection phase, when the overpressure decreases. These mechanisms have been investigated with a coupled and uncoupled approach, in order to understand the individual effects of each one and the effects of the interactions between them on the reservoir stability. Besides fluid overpressure, another relevant process is the temperature variation. Indeed, in the case of enhanced geothermal systems, the temperature contrast between the injected cold fluid and the deep hot reservoir is great and induces thermal stress, which sensibly affects the in-situ stress field. Therefore, we have studied overpressure and temperature effects by means of analytic solutions and by means of hydro-mechanical and thermo-hydro-mechanical numerical simulations. Results show that in fractured rocks the spatial variability of hydraulic and mechanic parameters provokes no isotropic variation of the tensional field, in response to pressure and temperature perturbations. Another

  7. Enhancing shelf life of minimally processed multiplier onion using silicone membrane.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naik, Ravindra; Ambrose, Dawn C P; Raghavan, G S Vijaya; Annamalai, S J K

    2014-12-01

    The aim of storage of minimal processed product is to increase the shelf life and thereby extend the period of availability of minimally processed produce. The silicone membrane makes use of the ability of polymer to permit selective passage of gases at different rates according to their physical and chemical properties. Here, the product stored maintains its own atmosphere by the combined effects of respiration process of the commodity and the diffusion rate through the membrane. A study was undertaken to enhance the shelf life of minimally processed multiplier onion with silicone membrane. The respiration activity was recorded at a temperature of 30 ± 2 °C (RH = 60 %) and 5 ± 1 °C (RH = 90 %). The respiration was found to be 23.4, 15.6, 10 mg CO2kg(-1)h(-1) at 5 ± 1 °C and 140, 110, 60 mg CO2kg(-1) h(-1) at 30 ± 2° for the peeled, sliced and diced multiplier onion, respectively. The respiration rate for the fresh multiplier onion was recorded to be 5, 10 mg CO2kg(-1) h(-1) at 5 ± 1 °C and 30 ± 1 ° C, respectively. Based on the shelf life studies and on the sensory evaluation, it was found that only the peeled multiplier onion could be stored. The sliced and diced multiplier onion did not have the required shelf life. The shelf life of the multiplier onion in the peel form could be increased from 4-5 days to 14 days by using the combined effect of silicone membrane (6 cm(2)/kg) and low temperature (5 ± 1 °C).

  8. Students’ Perception on the Effectiveness of Teamwork Based Activities in Enhancing the Learning Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anitha Sundrum

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, many organizations have begun to embrace the teamwork-based work culture in most aspects of their operations. Hence, employers are increasingly stressing on the need for fresh graduates to demonstrate the willingness and ability to work in a teamwork-based environment, before recruiting them. This in turn has placed tremendous pressure on academics to incorporate elements of teamwork-based activities in the teaching as well as assessment processes, in order to better equip their students to face the working world. Over the years much research has been done on various aspects of teamwork-based activities from the educators’ perspective. However, there is a lack of literature of the effectiveness of teamwork-based activities from the students’ perspective. This research attempts to explore the students’ perception on the effectiveness of teamwork-based activities in enhancing the learning process. A sample size of 70 students is randomly selected from a group of students in their First Year of the Diploma in Business Studies (Accounting program. These students are asked to complete a questionnaire to gauge their responses related to various aspects of teamworkbased activities. The data obtained will be analyzed using a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods. The results and implications derived from this research would be extremely beneficial to academics in helping them to understand the students’ point of view regarding teamwork-based activities. This would enable them to formulate more effective and constructive teamwork-based teaching strategies as well as assessment methods. In addition, the results of this research would also be valuable to employers in having a glimpse on what future graduates think and feel about teamwork-based activities, which are a crucial part of today’s working culture.

  9. Application of Response Surface Methodology to Enhance Phenol Removal from Refinery Wastewater by Microwave Process

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    Sherif A. Younis

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Phenol contaminated petroleum refinery wastewater presents a great threat on water resources safety. This study investigates the effect of microwave irradiation on removal of different concentrations of phenol in an attempt for petroleum refinery wastewater treatment. The obtained results show that the MW output power and irradiation time have a significant positive effect on the removal efficiency of phenol. The kinetic reaction is significantly affected by initial MW output power and initial phenol concentrations. Response surface methodology (RSM was employed to optimize and study the interaction effects of process parameters: MW output power, irradiation time, salinity, pH, and H2O2 concentration using central composite design (CCD. From the CCD design matrix, a quadratic model was considered as an ultimate model (R2 = 0.75 and its adequacy was justified through analysis of variance (ANOVA. The overall reaction rates were significantly enhanced in the combined MW/H2O2 system as proved by RSM. The optimum values for the design parameters of the MW/H2O2 process were evaluated giving predicted phenol removal percentage of 72.90% through RSM by differential approximation and were confirmed by experimental phenol removal of 75.70% in a batch experiment at optimum conditions of 439 W MW power, irradiation time of 24.22 min, salinity of 574 mg/L, pH 5.10, and initial H2O2 concentration of 10% (v/v.

  10. Mathematical analysis study for radar data processing and enhancement. Part 1: Radar data analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, R.; Brownlow, J. D.

    1985-01-01

    A study is performed under NASA contract to evaluate data from an AN/FPS-16 radar installed for support of flight programs at Dryden Flight Research Facility of NASA Ames Research Center. The purpose of this study is to provide information necessary for improving post-flight data reduction and knowledge of accuracy of derived radar quantities. Tracking data from six flights are analyzed. Noise and bias errors in raw tracking data are determined for each of the flights. A discussion of an altiude bias error during all of the tracking missions is included. This bias error is defined by utilizing pressure altitude measurements made during survey flights. Four separate filtering methods, representative of the most widely used optimal estimation techniques for enhancement of radar tracking data, are analyzed for suitability in processing both real-time and post-mission data. Additional information regarding the radar and its measurements, including typical noise and bias errors in the range and angle measurements, is also presented. This is in two parts. This is part 1, an analysis of radar data.

  11. OPTIMIZATION OF PROCESS PARAMETERS FOR ENHANCED MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF POLYPROPYLENE TERNARY NANOCOMPOSITES

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    Oladipupo Olaosebikan Ogunleye

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Preparation of Polypropylene ternary nanocomposites (PPTN was accomplished by blending multiwall carbon nanotube (MWCNT in polypropylene/clay binary system using a melt intercalation method. The effects of MWCNT loadings (A, melting temperature (B and mixing speed (C were investigated and optimized using central composite design. The analysis of the fitted cubic model clearly indicated that A and B were the main factors influencing the tensile properties at a fixed value of C. However, the analysis of variance showed that the interactions between the process parameters, such as; AB, AC, AB2, A2B and ABC, were highly significant on both tensile strength and Young’s modulus enhancement, while no interaction is significant in all models considered for elongation. The established optimal conditions gave 0.17%, 165 °C, and 120 rpm for A, B and C, respectively. These conditions yielded a percentage increase of 57 and 63% for tensile strength and Young’s modulus respectively compared to the virgin Polypropylene used.

  12. Scube2 enhances proteolytic Shh processing from the surface of Shh-producing cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakobs, Petra; Exner, Sebastian; Schürmann, Sabine; Pickhinke, Ute; Bandari, Shyam; Ortmann, Corinna; Kupich, Sabine; Schulz, Philipp; Hansen, Uwe; Seidler, Daniela G; Grobe, Kay

    2014-04-15

    All morphogens of the Hedgehog (Hh) family are synthesized as dual-lipidated proteins, which results in their firm attachment to the surface of the cell in which they were produced. Thus, Hh release into the extracellular space requires accessory protein activities. We suggested previously that the proteolytic removal of N- and C-terminal lipidated peptides (shedding) could be one such activity. More recently, the secreted glycoprotein Scube2 (signal peptide, cubulin domain, epidermal-growth-factor-like protein 2) was also implicated in the release of Shh from the cell membrane. This activity strictly depended on the CUB domains of Scube2, which derive their name from the complement serine proteases and from bone morphogenetic protein-1/tolloid metalloproteinases (C1r/C1s, Uegf and Bmp1). CUB domains function as regulators of proteolytic activity in these proteins. This suggested that sheddases and Scube2 might cooperate in Shh release. Here, we confirm that sheddases and Scube2 act cooperatively to increase the pool of soluble bioactive Shh, and that Scube2-dependent morphogen release is unequivocally linked to the proteolytic processing of lipidated Shh termini, resulting in truncated soluble Shh. Thus, Scube2 proteins act as protease enhancers in this setting, revealing newly identified Scube2 functions in Hh signaling regulation.

  13. An Enhanced Preventive Maintenance Optimization Model Based on a Three-Stage Failure Process

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    Ruifeng Yang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Nuclear power plants are highly complex systems and the issues related to their safety are of primary importance. Probabilistic safety assessment is regarded as the most widespread methodology for studying the safety of nuclear power plants. As maintenance is one of the most important factors for affecting the reliability and safety, an enhanced preventive maintenance optimization model based on a three-stage failure process is proposed. Preventive maintenance is still a dominant maintenance policy due to its easy implementation. In order to correspond to the three-color scheme commonly used in practice, the lifetime of system before failure is divided into three stages, namely, normal, minor defective, and severe defective stages. When the minor defective stage is identified, two measures are considered for comparison: one is that halving the inspection interval only when the minor defective stage is identified at the first time; the other one is that if only identifying the minor defective stage, the subsequent inspection interval is halved. Maintenance is implemented immediately once the severe defective stage is identified. Minimizing the expected cost per unit time is our objective function to optimize the inspection interval. Finally, a numerical example is presented to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed models.

  14. Supporting Technology for Enhanced Oil Recovery-EOR Thermal Processes Report IV-12

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Izequeido, Alexandor

    2001-04-01

    This report contains the results of efforts under the six tasks of the Ninth Amendment and Extension of Annex IV, Enhanced Oil Recovery Thermal Processes of the Venezuela/USA Agreement. The report is presented in sections (for each of the 6 tasks) and each section contains one or more reports prepared by various individuals or groups describing the results of efforts under each of the tasks. A statement of each task, taken from the agreement, is presented on the first page of each section. The tasks are numbered 62 through 67. The first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eight, and ninth reports on Annex IV, [Venezuela MEM/USA-DOE Fossil Energy Report IV-1, IV-2, IV-3, IV-4, IV-5, IV-6, IV-7, and IV-8 (DOE/BETC/SP-83/15, DOE/BC-84/6/SP, DOE/BC-86/2/SP, DOE/BC-87/2/SP, DOE/BC-89/1/SP, DOE/BC-90/1/SP) DOE/BC-92/1/SP, DOE/BC-93/3/SP, and DOE/BC-95/3/SP] contain the results from the first 61 tasks. Those reports are dated April 1983, August 1984, March 1986, July 1! 987, November 1988, December 1989, October 1991, February 1993, and March 1995 respectively.

  15. Unique membrane properties and enhanced signal processing in human neocortical neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eyal, Guy; Verhoog, Matthijs B; Testa-Silva, Guilherme; Deitcher, Yair; Lodder, Johannes C; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth; Morales, Juan; DeFelipe, Javier; de Kock, Christiaan PJ; Mansvelder, Huibert D; Segev, Idan

    2016-01-01

    The advanced cognitive capabilities of the human brain are often attributed to our recently evolved neocortex. However, it is not known whether the basic building blocks of the human neocortex, the pyramidal neurons, possess unique biophysical properties that might impact on cortical computations. Here we show that layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons from human temporal cortex (HL2/3 PCs) have a specific membrane capacitance (Cm) of ~0.5 µF/cm2, half of the commonly accepted 'universal' value (~1 µF/cm2) for biological membranes. This finding was predicted by fitting in vitro voltage transients to theoretical transients then validated by direct measurement of Cm in nucleated patch experiments. Models of 3D reconstructed HL2/3 PCs demonstrated that such low Cm value significantly enhances both synaptic charge-transfer from dendrites to soma and spike propagation along the axon. This is the first demonstration that human cortical neurons have distinctive membrane properties, suggesting important implications for signal processing in human neocortex. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16553.001 PMID:27710767

  16. Treating solid dairy manure using microwave-enhanced advanced oxidation process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenge, Anju A; Liao, Ping H; Lo, Kwang V

    2009-08-01

    The microwave enhanced advanced oxidation process (MW/H(2)O(2)-AOP) was used to treat separated solid dairy manure for nutrient release and solids reduction. The MW/H(2)O(2)-AOP was conducted at a microwave temperature of 120 degrees C for 10 minutes, and at three pH conditions of 3.5, 7.3 and 12. The hydrogen peroxide dosage at approximately 2 mL per 1% TS for a 30 mL sample was used in this study, reflecting a range of 0.53-0.75 g H(2)O(2)/g dry sludge. The results indicated that substantial quantities of nutrients could be released into the solution at pH of 3.5. However, at neutral and basic conditions only volatile fatty acids and soluble chemical oxygen demand could be released. The analyses on orthophosphate, soluble chemical oxygen demands and volatile fatty acids were re-examined for dairy manure. It was found that the orthophosphate concentration for untreated samples at a higher % total solids (TS) was suppressed and lesser than actual. To overcome this difficulty, the initial orthophosphate concentration had to be measured at 0.5% TS.

  17. Microwave enhanced advanced oxidation process for treating dairy manure at low pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lo, Kwang V; Chan, Winnie W I; Yawson, Selina K; Liao, Ping H

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated the treatment of dairy manure using the microwave enhanced advanced oxidation process (MW-AOP) at pH 2. An experimental design was developed based on a statistical program using response surface methodology to explore the effects of temperature, hydrogen peroxide dosage and heating time on sugar production, nutrient release and solids destruction. Temperature, hydrogen peroxide dosage and acid concentration were key factors affecting reducing sugar production. The highest reducing sugar yield of 7.4% was obtained at 160°C, 0 mL, 15 min heating time, and no H(2)O(2) addition. Temperature was a dominant factor for an increase of soluble chemical oxygen demand (SCOD) in the treated dairy manure. The important factors for volatile fatty acids (VFA) production were microwave temperature and hydrogen peroxide dosage. Temperature was the most important parameter, and heating time, to a lesser extent affecting orthophosphate release. Heating time, hydrogen peroxide dosage and temperature were significant factors for ammonia release. There was a maximum of 96% and 196% increase in orthophosphate and ammonia concentration, respectively at 160°C, 0.5 mL H(2)O(2) and 15 min heating time. The MW-AOP is an effective method in dairy manure treatment for sugar production, nutrient solubilisation, and solids disintegration.

  18. Treatment of dairy manure using the microwave enhanced advanced oxidation process under a continuous mode operation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yang; Lo, Ing W; Liao, Ping H; Lo, Kwang V

    2010-11-01

    The microwave enhanced advanced oxidation process (MW/H(2)O(2)-AOP) was used to treat dairy manure for solubilization of nutrients and organic matters. This study investigated the effectiveness of the MW/H(2)O(2)-AOP under a continuous mode of operation, and compared the results to those of batch operations. The main factors affecting solubilization by the MW/H(2)O(2)-AOP were heating temperature and hydrogen peroxide dosage. Soluble chemical oxygen demand (SCOD) and volatile fatty acids (VFA) increased with an increase of microwave (MW) heating temperature; very high concentrations were obtained at 90°C. Insignificant amounts of ammonia and reducing sugars were released in all runs. An acidic pH condition was required for phosphorus solubilisation from dairy manure. The best yield was obtained at 90°C with an acid dosage of 1.0 %; about 92 % of total phosphorus and 90 % of total chemical oxygen demand were in the soluble forms. The MW/H(2)O(2)-AOP operated in a continuous operation mode showed pronounced synergistic effects between hydrogen peroxide and microwave irradiation when compared to a batch system under similar operating conditions, resulting in much better yields.

  19. The microbial community in a high-temperature enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ying Hui Ong

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available An enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR process operated at a relatively high temperature, 28 °C, removed 85% carbon and 99% phosphorus from wastewater over a period of two years. This study investigated its microbial community through fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH and clone library generation. Through FISH, considerably more Candidatus “Accumulibacter phosphatis” (Accumulibacter-polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs than Candidatus ‘Competibacter phosphatis’ (Competibacter-glycogen accumulating organisms were detected in the reactor, at 36 and 7% of total bacterial population, respectively. A low ratio of Glycogen/Volatile Fatty Acid of 0.69 further indicated the dominance of PAOs in the reactor. From clone library generated, 26 operational taxonomy units were retrieved from the sludge and a diverse population was shown, comprising Proteobacteria (69.6%, Actinobacteria (13.7%, Bacteroidetes (9.8%, Firmicutes (2.94%, Planctomycetes (1.96%, and Acidobacteria (1.47%. Accumulibacter are the only recognized PAOs revealed by the clone library. Both the clone library and FISH results strongly suggest that Accumulibacter are the major PAOs responsible for the phosphorus removal in this long-term EBPR at relatively high temperature.

  20. Towards a smart Holter system with high performance analogue front-end and enhanced digital processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, Leilei; Yan, Yan; Wu, Wenxian; Mei, Qiujun; Luo, Yu; Li, Yang; Wang, Lei

    2013-01-01

    Multiple-lead dynamic ECG recorders (Holter) play an important role in the earlier detection of various cardiovascular diseases. In this paper, we present the first several steps towards a 12-lead Holter system with high-performance AFE (Analogue Front-End) and enhanced digital processing. The system incorporates an analogue front-end chip (ADS1298 from TI), which has not yet been widely used in most commercial Holter products. A highly-efficient data management module was designated to handle the data exchange between the ADS1298 and the microprocessor (STM32L151 from ST electronics). Furthermore, the system employs a Field Programmable Gate Array (Spartan-3E from Xilinx) module, on which a dedicated real-time 227-step FIR filter was executed to improve the overall filtering performance, since the ADS1298 has no high-pass filtering capability and only allows limited low-pass filtering. The Spartan-3E FPGA is also capable of offering further on-board computational ability for a smarter Holter. The results indicate that all functional blocks work as intended. In the future, we will conduct clinical trials and compare our system with other state-of-the-arts.

  1. Application of combined physicochemical and biological processes for enhanced treatment of avermectin fermentation wastewater.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Anfeng; Huang, Pengyu; Gui, Dawei; Wang, Haisheng; Feng, Quan; Chu, Libing; Xing, Xin-Hui

    2009-01-01

    This paper aimed at developing the enhanced biological treatment processes for treating avermectin fermentation wastewater (AFW). After UASB treatment and chemical coagulation, the pretreated AFW was subsequently flowed into a rCAA reactor (reactor with repeated coupling of aerobes and anaerobes using macroporous carriers) system for further pollutant degradation and excess sludge reduction. By the treatment with chemical coagulation, COD, total nitrogen and total phosphorus concentration of treated AFW were eliminated to 550-700 mg/L, 130-160 mg/L and 1 mg/L, respectively, and the dark color of the wastewater was greatly bleached. After this decolorized wastewater was treated by the following rCAA bioreactor, the COD could be reduced to around 200-300 mg/L, while the further decrease of COD less than 200 mg/L was difficult. The Biolog analysis and OUR test for the water treated by rCAA bioreactor demonstrated that the effluent from chemical coagulation contained some unknown compounds with low biodegradability and would simplify the microbial community in the subsequent rCAA reactor.

  2. Qualification of the ALKASORB sorbent for the sorption-enhanced water-gas shift process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van Selow, E.R.; Cobden, P.D.; Dijk, Van H.A.J.; Walspurger, S.; Verbraeken, P.A.; Jansen, D.

    2013-07-01

    For the sorption-enhanced water-gas shift (SEWGS) process, a new sorbent material has been qualified in a reactor of 2 m length under conditions close to industrial designs. The sorbent ALKASORB is a potassium-carbonate promoted hydrotalcite-based compound. ALKASORB is shown to have many favourable properties in comparison to the reference sorbent, in particular with respect to mechanical stability. The cyclic capacity of the new compound is substantially higher than the cyclic capacity of the reference sorbent, and it allows a reduction of the steam requirement of 50%. The sorbent has demonstrated catalytic activity for the water-gas shift reaction that is sufficient to omit a separate catalyst. It is demonstrated that the sorbent remains chemically and mechanically stable during operation of at least 2000 adsorption-desorption cycles, even in the presence of H2S in the feed. H2S is shown not to influence CO2 adsorption capacity and is co-captured with the CO2. In contrast to the reference material that showed mechanical degradation during extended adsorption-desorption cycles, the new material is stable and allows to obtain carbon capture levels exceeding 95% more efficiently and more economically since the required size of the vessels will be smaller.

  3. Simplified Process for Manufacturing Macroscale Patterns to Enhance Voltage Generation by a Triboelectric Generator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun-Ho Yang

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a simple, yet effective and affordable, manufacturing process to enhance the overall efficiency of voltage generation by a triboelectric generator (TEG using 3D printers for energy-harvesting applications. The proposed method can be classified as macroscale surface patterning, in contrast to micro- and nanoscale patterning of TEG proposed in previous studies. Experiments were conducted using a designed test-bed system that allowed the control of external factors, such as the magnitude and frequency of the frictional force and the relative humidity, and an output voltage increase of up to 67% was obtained from a TEG with macroscale patterns that increased the surface area by 14%. The peak voltage generated by the TEG was as high as 18 V, and the addition of a designed analog circuit that uses no external power enabled storage of a DC voltage of 0.4 V. In comparison with previous methods that employ micro- or nanoscale patterns, the proposed patterning method is faster and more suitable for mass production.

  4. Emotional, Cognitive and Self-Enhancement Processes in Aggressive Behavior After Interpersonal Rejection and Exclusion

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    Joanna Rajchert

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between exclusion or rejection and aggression is already well documented, but there is still a debate about the mechanisms that underlie this effect. In two studies we focused on the propensity to react aggressively (readiness for aggression on the bases of emotional, cognitive or self-enhancement (personality-immanent processes. In both studies we first measured readiness for aggression and then ego-depleted participants. Next, in Study 1 we excluded participants (n = 96 using an online ball throwing game and measured displaced aggressive behavior - intensity and duration of an unpleasant noise administrated to a stranger. In Study 2 participants (n = 140 were rejected by a peer on the basis of an interview that they gave and then could retaliate by reducing peer's chance for getting a job. The results show that exclusion effect on displaced aggression was moderated by cognitive readiness for aggression, while rejection effect on retaliatory aggression was shaped by emotional and personality-immanent readiness for aggression as well as ego-depletion. The results were discussed in light of the strength model of self-control by Baumeister, Vohs, and Tice (2007.

  5. IR camera temperature resolution enhancing using computer processing of IR image

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trofimov, Vyacheslav A.; Trofimov, Vladislav V.

    2016-05-01

    As it is well-known, application of the IR camera for the security problems is very promising way. In previous papers, we demonstrate new possibility of the passive THz camera using for a temperature difference observing on the human skin if this difference is caused by different temperatures inside the body. For proof of validity of our statement we make the similar physical experiment using the IR camera. We show a possility of viewing the temperature trace on a human body skin, caused by temperature changing inside the human body due to water drinking. We use new approach, based on usung a correlation function, for computer processing of IR images. Its application results in a temperature resolution enhancing of cameras. We analyze IR images of a person, which drinks water. We follow a temperature trace on human body skin, caused by changing of temperature inside the human body. Some experiments were made with measurements of a body temperature covered by shirt. We try to see a human body temperature changing in physical experiments under consideration. Shown phenomena are very important for the detection of forbidden objects, cancelled under clothes or inside the human body, by using non-destructive control without using X-rays.

  6. Using Argument Visualization to Enhance e-Participation in the Legislation Formation Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loukis, Euripidis; Xenakis, Alexandros; Tseperli, Nektaria

    Most public policy problems are ‘wicked’, being characterised by high complexity, many heterogeneous views and conflicts among various stakeholders. Therefore citizens interested to participate in such debates in order to be sufficiently informed should study large amounts of relevant material, such as reports, laws, committees’ minutes, etc., which are in legalistic or in other specialist languages, or very often their substance is hidden in political rhetoric, putting barriers to a meaningful participation. In this paper we present the results of the research we have conducted for addressing this problem through the use of ‘Computer Supported Argument Visualization’ (CSAV) methods for supporting and enhancing e-participation in the legislation formation process. This approach has been implemented in a pilot e-participation project and then evaluated using both quantitative and qualitative methods based on the ‘Technology Acceptance Model’ (TAM), with positive results. Based on the conclusions of this evaluation an enrichment of the IBIS framework has been developed for improving the visualization of legal documents.

  7. Degradation of remazol golden yellow dye wastewater in microwave enhanced ClO2 catalytic oxidation process.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bi, Xiaoyi; Wang, Peng; Jiao, Chunyan; Cao, Hailei

    2009-09-15

    Experiments were conducted to investigate the removal of remazol golden yellow dye in order to assess the effectiveness and feasibility of microwave enhanced chlorine dioxide (ClO(2)) catalytic oxidation process. The catalyst used in this process was CuO(n)-La(2)O(3)/gamma-Al(2)O(3). The operating parameters such as the ClO(2) dosage, catalyst dosage, and pH were evaluated. The results showed that microwave enhanced catalytic oxidation process could effectively degrade remazol golden yellow dye with low oxidant dosage in a short reaction time and extensive pH range compared to the conventional wet catalytic oxidation. Under the optimal condition (ClO(2) concentration 80 mg/L, microwave power 400 W, contacting time 1.5 min, catalyst dosage 70 g/L, and pH 7), color removal efficiency approached 94.03%, corresponding to 67.92% of total organic carbon removal efficiency. It was found that the fluorescence intensity in microwave enhanced ClO(2) catalytic oxidation system was about 500a.u. which was verified that there was much hydroxyl radical produced. Compared with different processes, microwave enhanced ClO(2) catalytic oxidation system could significantly enhance the degradation efficiency. It provides an effective technology for dye wastewater treatment.

  8. Enhanced process understanding and multivariate prediction of the relationship between cell culture process and monoclonal antibody quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokolov, Michael; Ritscher, Jonathan; MacKinnon, Nicola; Souquet, Jonathan; Broly, Hervé; Morbidelli, Massimo; Butté, Alessandro

    2017-05-27

    This work investigates the insights and understanding which can be deduced from predictive process models for the product quality of a monoclonal antibody based on designed high-throughput cell culture experiments performed at milliliter (ambr-15(®) ) scale. The investigated process conditions include various media supplements as well as pH and temperature shifts applied during the process. First, principal component analysis (PCA) is used to show the strong correlation characteristics among the product quality attributes including aggregates, fragments, charge variants, and glycans. Then, partial least square regression (PLS1 and PLS2) is applied to predict the product quality variables based on process information (one by one or simultaneously). The comparison of those two modeling techniques shows that a single (PLS2) model is capable of revealing the interrelationship of the process characteristics to the large set product quality variables. In order to show the dynamic evolution of the process predictability separate models are defined at different time points showing that several product quality attributes are mainly driven by the media composition and, hence, can be decently predicted from early on in the process, while others are strongly affected by process parameter changes during the process. Finally, by coupling the PLS2 models with a genetic algorithm first the model performance can be further improved and, most importantly, the interpretation of the large-dimensioned process-product-interrelationship can be significantly simplified. The generally applicable toolset presented in this case study provides a solid basis for decision making and process optimization throughout process development. © 2017 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Biotechnol. Prog., 2017. © 2017 American Institute of Chemical Engineers.

  9. Remote Sensing Image Enhancement Based on Non-subsampled Shearlet Transform and Parameterized Logarithmic Image Processing Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)<