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Sample records for 4-fold degenerate sites

  1. Targeting Inflammatory Demyelinating Lesions to Sites of Wallerian Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Tsunoda, Ikuo; Tanaka, Tomoko; Saijoh, Yukio; Fujinami, Robert S.

    2007-01-01

    In Theiler’s murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV) infection, an animal model for multiple sclerosis (MS), axonal injury precedes inflammatory demyelinating lesions, and the distribution of axonal damage present during the early phase of infection corresponds to regions where subsequent demyelination occurs during the chronic phase. We hypothesized that axonal damage recruits inflammatory cells to sites of Wallerian degeneration, leading to demyelination. Three weeks after TMEV infection, axonal degeneration was induced in the posterior funiculus of mice by injecting the toxic lectin Ricinus communis agglutinin (RCA) I into the sciatic nerve. Neuropathology was examined 1 week after lectin injection. Control mice, infected with TMEV but receiving no RCA I, had inflammatory demyelinating lesions in the anterior/lateral funiculi. Other control mice that received RCA I alone did not develop inflammatory lesions. In contrast, RCA I injection into TMEV-infected mice induced lesions in the posterior funiculus in addition to the anterior/lateral funiculi. We found no differences in lymphoproliferative responses or antibody titers against TMEV among the groups. This suggests that axonal degeneration contributes to the recruitment of inflammatory cells into the central nervous system by altering the local microenvironment. In this scenario, lesions develop from the axon (inside) to the myelin (outside) (Inside-Out model). PMID:17823280

  2. Human cartilage endplate permeability varies with degeneration and intervertebral disc site.

    PubMed

    DeLucca, John F; Cortes, Daniel H; Jacobs, Nathan T; Vresilovic, Edward J; Duncan, Randall L; Elliott, Dawn M

    2016-02-29

    Despite the critical functions the human cartilage endplate (CEP) plays in the intervertebral disc, little is known about its structural and mechanical properties and their changes with degeneration. Quantifying these changes with degeneration is important for understanding how the CEP contributes to the function and pathology of the disc. Therefore the objectives of this study were to quantify the effect of disc degeneration on human CEP mechanical properties, determine the influence of superior and inferior disc site on mechanics and composition, and simulate the role of collagen fibers in CEP and disc mechanics using a validated finite element model. Confined compression data and biochemical composition data were used in a biphasic-swelling model to calculate compressive extrafibrillar elastic and permeability properties. Tensile properties were obtained by applying published tensile test data to an ellipsoidal fiber distribution. Results showed that with degeneration CEP permeability decreased 50-60% suggesting that transport is inhibited in the degenerate disc. CEP fibers are organized parallel to the vertebrae and nucleus pulposus and may contribute to large shear strains (0.1-0.2) and delamination failure of the CEP commonly seen in herniated disc tissue. Fiber-reinforcement also reduces CEP axial strains thereby enhancing fluid flux by a factor of 1.8. Collectively, these results suggest that the structure and mechanics of the CEP may play critical roles in the solute transport and disc mechanics. PMID:26874969

  3. 4-fold photocurrent enhancement in ultrathin nanoplasmonic perovskite solar cells.

    PubMed

    Cai, Boyuan; Peng, Yong; Cheng, Yi-Bing; Gu, Min

    2015-11-30

    Although perovskite materials have been widely investigated for thin-film photovoltaic devices due to the potential for high efficiency, their high toxicity has pressed the development of a solar cell structure of an ultra-thin absorber layer. But insufficient light absorption could be a result of ultra-thin perovskite films. In this paper, we propose a new nanoplasmonic solar cell that integrates metal nanoparticles at its rear/front surfaces of the perovskite layer. Plasmon-enhanced light scattering and near-field enhancement effects from lumpy sliver nanoparticles result in the photocurrent enhancement for a 50 nm thick absorber, which is higher than that for a 300 nm thick flat perovskite solar cell. We also predict the 4-fold photocurrent enhancement in an ultrathin perovskite solar cell with the absorber thickness of 10 nm. Our results pave a new way for ultrathin high-efficiency solar cells with either a lead-based or a lead-free perovskite absorption layer. PMID:26698816

  4. Arterial wall degeneration plus hemodynamic insult cause arterial wall remodeling and nascent aneurysm formation at specific sites in dogs.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yue-Qi; Li, Ming-Hua; Yan, Lei; Tan, Hua-Qiao; Cheng, Ying-Sheng

    2014-09-01

    To determine whether arterial wall degeneration, in combination with hemodynamic insult, causes cerebral artery aneurysms in a dog model, we simulated the geometry and hemodynamics of a human artery by surgical reconstruction of both common carotid arteries in 12 dogs. The dogs were then randomly assigned to one of the following groups: hemodynamic insult + elastase insult group ( n = 6), hemodynamic insult group (n = 6), or elastase control group (n = 3), in which the straight common carotid arteries were subjected to elastase alone. Angiography and hemodynamic analysis were performed immediately and at 12 weeks after surgery; the animals were then killed for histologic evaluation. The 12 surgically reconstructed distal internal carotid arteries simulated the human artery well with respect to geometric and hemodynamic measurements, with the intended aneurysm sites exposed to higher wall shear stress and velocity, lower pressure, turbulent flow, and changes in wall shear stress gradient. Nascent aneurysms developed in 4 hemodynamic insult + elastase insult group dogs at 12 weeks; blood flow analysis demonstrated decreased wall shear stress, increased pressure, and wall shear stress gradient from the neck to the dome. Arterial wall remodeling or nascent aneurysm formation in the hemodynamic insult + elastase insult group versus the other groups was indicated by internal elastic lamina/elastic fiber disruption, muscular layer thinning, increased smooth muscle cell proliferation, macrophage infiltration, and high expression of matrix metalloproteinase-2 and matrix metalloproteinase-9 in the media. These data suggest that nascent aneurysms were caused by the combination of arterial wall degeneration and hemodynamic perturbations in this distal internal carotid artery dog model. PMID:25111020

  5. Cerebellar Degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... Degeneration? Cerebellar degeneration is a process in which neurons in the cerebellum - the area of the brain ... proteins that are necessary for the survival of neurons. Associated diseases: Diseases that are specific to the ...

  6. Striatonigral Degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... seen in Parkinson's disease, including rigidity, instability, impaired speech, and slow movements. Is there any treatment? There is no cure for striatonigral degeneration, and treatments for the disorder ...

  7. Crystalline structures of polymeric hydrocarbon with 3,4-fold helical chains

    PubMed Central

    Lian, Chao-Sheng; Li, Han-Dong; Wang, Jian-Tao

    2015-01-01

    Molecular hydrocarbons are well-known to polymerize under pressure to form covalently bonded frameworks. Here we predict by ab initio calculations two distinct three-dimensional hydrocarbon crystalline structures composed of 3-fold and 4-fold helical CH chains in rhombohedral () and tetragonal (I41/a) symmetry, respectively. Both structures with 1:1 stoichiometry are found to be energetically more favorable than solid acetylene and cubane, and even more stable than benzene II solid at high pressure. The calculations on vibrational, electronic, and optical properties reveal that the new chiral hydrocarbons are dynamically stable with large bulk moduli around 200 GPa, and exhibit a transparent insulating behavior with indirect band gaps of 5.9 ~ 6.7 eV and anisotropic adsorption spectra. Such forms of hydrocarbon, once synthesized, would have wide applications in mechanical, optoelectronic, and biological materials. PMID:25579707

  8. Lipoprotein(A) with An Intact Lysine Binding Site Protects the Retina From an Age-Related Macular Degeneration Phenotype in Mice (An American Ophthalmological Society Thesis)

    PubMed Central

    Handa, James T.; Tagami, Mizuki; Ebrahimi, Katayoon; Leibundgut, Gregor; Janiak, Anna; Witztum, Joseph L.; Tsimikas, Sotirios

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: To test the hypothesis that the accumulation of oxidized phospholipids (OxPL) in the macula is toxic to the retina unless neutralized by a variety of mechanisms, including binding by lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)], which is composed of apolipoprotein(a) [apo(a)] and apolipoprotein B-100 (apoB). Methods: Human maculas and eyes from two Lp(a) transgenic murine models were subjected to morphologic, ultrastructural, and immunohistochemical analysis. “Wild-type Lp(a)” mice, which express human apoB-100 and apo(a) that contains oxidized phospholipid, and “mutant LBS− Lp(a)” mice with a defective apo(a) lysine binding site (LBS) for oxidized phospholipid binding, were fed a chow or high-fat diet for 2 to 12 months. Oxidized phospholipid–containing lipoproteins were detected by immunoreactivity to E06, a murine monoclonal antibody binding to the phosphocholine headgroup of oxidized, but not native, phospholipids. Results: Oxidized phospholipids, apo(a), and apoB accumulate in maculas, including drusen, of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) samples and age-matched controls. Lp(a) mice fed a high-fat diet developed age-related changes. However, mutant LBS− Lp(a) mice fed a high-fat diet developed retinal pigment epithelial cell degeneration and drusen. These changes were associated with increased OxPL, decreased antioxidant defenses, increased complement, and decreased complement regulators. Conclusions: Human maculas accumulate Lp(a) and OxPL. Mutant LBS− Lp(a) mice, lacking the ability to bind E06-detectable oxidized phospholipid, develop AMD-like changes. The ability of Lp(a) to bind E06-detectable OxPL may play a protective role in AMD.

  9. A degenerate tri-partite DNA binding site required for activation of ComA-dependent quorum response gene expression in Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Griffith, Kevin L.; Grossman, Alan D.

    2008-01-01

    Summary In Bacillus subtilis, the transcription factor ComA activates several biological processes in response to increasing population density. Extracellular peptide signaling is used to coordinate the activity of ComA with population density. At low culture densities, when the concentration of signaling peptides is lowest, ComA is largely inactive. At higher densities, when the concentration of signaling peptides is higher, ComA is active and activates transcription of at least 9 operons involved in the development of competence and the production of degradative enzymes and antibiotics. We found that ComA binds a degenerate tri-partite sequence consisting of three DNA binding determinants or recognition elements. Mutational analyses showed that all three recognition elements are required for transcription activation in vivo and for specific DNA binding by ComA in vitro. Degeneracy of the recognition elements in the ComA binding site is an important regulatory feature for coordinating transcription with population density, i.e., promoters containing an optimized binding site have high activity at low culture density and were no longer regulated in the normal density-dependent manner. We found that purified ComA forms a dimer in solution and we propose a model for how two dimers of ComA bind to an odd number of DNA binding determinants to activate transcription of target genes. This DNA-protein architecture for transcription activation appears to be conserved for ComA homologs in other Bacillus species. PMID:18585392

  10. Macular degeneration (image)

    MedlinePLUS

    Macular degeneration is a disease of the retina that affects the macula in the back of the eye. ... see fine details. There are two types of macular degeneration, dry and wet. Dry macular degeneration is more ...

  11. Macular Degeneration: An Overview.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chalifoux, L. M.

    1991-01-01

    This article presents information on macular degeneration for professionals helping persons with this disease adjust to their visual loss. It covers types of macular degeneration, the etiology of the disease, and its treatment. Also considered are psychosocial problems and other difficulties that persons with age-related macular degeneration face.

  12. Biomechanics of Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Palepu, V.; Kodigudla, M.; Goel, V. K.

    2012-01-01

    Disc degeneration and associated disorders are among the most debated topics in the orthopedic literature over the past few decades. These may be attributed to interrelated mechanical, biochemical, and environmental factors. The treatment options vary from conservative approaches to surgery, depending on the severity of degeneration and response to conservative therapies. Spinal fusion is considered to be the “gold standard” in surgical methods till date. However, the association of adjacent level degeneration has led to the evolution of motion preservation technologies like spinal arthroplasty and posterior dynamic stabilization systems. These new technologies are aimed to address pain and preserve motion while maintaining a proper load sharing among various spinal elements. This paper provides an elaborative biomechanical review of the technologies aimed to address the disc degeneration and reiterates the point that biomechanical efficacy followed by long-term clinical success will allow these nonfusion technologies as alternatives to fusion, at least in certain patient population. PMID:22745914

  13. Double Degenerate Binary Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Yakut, K.

    2011-09-21

    In this study, angular momentum loss via gravitational radiation in double degenerate binary (DDB)systems (NS + NS, NS + WD, WD + WD, and AM CVn) is studied. Energy loss by gravitational waves has been estimated for each type of systems.

  14. Kraepelin and degeneration theory.

    PubMed

    Hoff, Paul

    2008-06-01

    Emil Kraepelin's contribution to the clinical and scientific field of psychiatry is recognized world-wide. In recent years, however, there have been a number of critical remarks on his acceptance of degeneration theory in particular and on his political opinion in general, which was said to have carried "overtones of proto-fascism" by Michael Shepherd [28]. The present paper discusses the theoretical cornerstones of Kraepelinian psychiatry with regard to their relevance for Kraepelin's attitude towards degeneration theory. This theory had gained wide influence not only in scientific, but also in philosophical and political circles in the last decades of the nineteenth century. There is no doubt that Kraepelin, on the one hand, accepted and implemented degeneration theory into the debate on etiology and pathogenesis of mental disorders. On the other hand, it is not appropriate to draw a simple and direct line from early versions of degeneration theory to the crimes of psychiatrists and politicians during the rule of national socialism. What we need, is a differentiated view, since this will be the only scientific one. Much research needs to be done here in the future, and such research will surely have a significant impact not only on the historical field, but also on the continuous debate about psychiatry, neuroscience and neurophilosophy. PMID:18516511

  15. American Macular Degeneration Foundation

    MedlinePLUS

    ... of Macular Degeneration The Eye as a Camera Anatomy of a Normal Human Eye ADA and Your Legal Protection AMD Treatment ... Amsler Grid Ten Questions to Ask Your Doctor Anatomy of a Normal Human Eye Disclaimer Privacy Policy Americans with Disabilities Act ...

  16. X-82 to Treat Age-related Macular Degeneration

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2015-05-15

    Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD); Macular Degeneration; Exudative Age-related Macular Degeneration; AMD; Macular Degeneration, Age-related, 10; Eye Diseases; Retinal Degeneration; Retinal Diseases

  17. Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... this page please turn Javascript on. Age-related Macular Degeneration What is AMD? Click for more information Age-related macular degeneration, ... the macula allows you to see fine detail. AMD Blurs Central Vision AMD blurs the sharp central ...

  18. Signaling mechanisms regulating Wallerian degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Marc R.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Wallerian degeneration (WD) occurs after an axon is cut or crushed and entails the disintegration and clearance of the severed axon distal to the injury site. WD was initially thought to result from the passive wasting away of the distal axonal fragment, presumably because it lacked a nutrient supply from the cell body. The discovery of the slow Wallerian degeneration (Wlds) mutant mouse, in which distal severed axons survive intact for weeks rather than only 12 days, radically changed our thoughts on the autonomy of axon survival. Wlds taught us that under some conditions the axonal compartment can survive for weeks after axotomy without a cell body. The phenotypic and molecular characterization of Wlds and current models for Wlds molecular function are reviewed hereinthe mechanism(s) by which WldS spares severed axons remains unresolved. However, recent studies inspired by Wlds have led to the identification of the first axon death signaling molecules whose endogenous activities promote axon destruction during WD. PMID:24907513

  19. Quantum degenerate systems

    SciTech Connect

    Micheli, Fiorenza de; Zanelli, Jorge

    2012-10-15

    A degenerate dynamical system is characterized by a symplectic structure whose rank is not constant throughout phase space. Its phase space is divided into causally disconnected, nonoverlapping regions in each of which the rank of the symplectic matrix is constant, and there are no classical orbits connecting two different regions. Here the question of whether this classical disconnectedness survives quantization is addressed. Our conclusion is that in irreducible degenerate systems-in which the degeneracy cannot be eliminated by redefining variables in the action-the disconnectedness is maintained in the quantum theory: there is no quantum tunnelling across degeneracy surfaces. This shows that the degeneracy surfaces are boundaries separating distinct physical systems, not only classically, but in the quantum realm as well. The relevance of this feature for gravitation and Chern-Simons theories in higher dimensions cannot be overstated.

  20. Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Rabinovici, Gil D.; Miller, Bruce L.

    2010-01-01

    Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) is a clinically and pathologically heterogeneous syndrome, characterized by progressive decline in behaviour or language associated with degeneration of the frontal and anterior temporal lobes. While the seminal cases were described at the turn of the 20th century, FTLD has only recently been appreciated as a leading cause of dementia, particularly in patients presenting before the age of 65 years. Three distinct clinical variants of FTLD have been described: (i) behavioural-variant frontotemporal dementia, characterized by changes in behaviour and personality in association with frontal-predominant cortical degeneration; (ii) semantic dementia, a syndrome of progressive loss of knowledge about words and objects associated with anterior temporal neuronal loss; and (iii) progressive nonfluent aphasia, characterized by effortful language output, loss of grammar and motor speech deficits in the setting of left perisylvian cortical atrophy. The majority of pathologies associated with FTLD clinical syndromes include either tau-positive (FTLD-TAU) or TAR DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP-43)-positive (FTLD-TDP) inclusion bodies. FTLD overlaps clinically and pathologically with the atypical parkinsonian disorders corticobasal degeneration and progressive supranuclear palsy, and with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. The majority of familial FTLD cases are caused by mutations in the genes encoding microtubule-associated protein tau (leading to FTLD-TAU) or progranulin (leading to FTLD-TDP). The clinical and pathologic heterogeneity of FTLD poses a significant diagnostic challenge, and in vivo prediction of underlying histopathology can be significantly improved by supplementing the clinical evaluation with genetic tests and emerging biological markers. Current pharmacotherapy for FTLD focuses on manipulating serotonergic or dopaminergic neurotransmitter systems to ameliorate behavioural or motor symptoms. However, recent advances in FTLD genetics and molecular pathology make the prospect of biologically driven, disease-specific therapies for FTLD seem closer than ever. PMID:20369906

  1. Age related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    Introduction Sight-threatening (late) age-related macular degeneration (AMD) occurs in 2% of people aged over 50 years in industrialised countries, with prevalence increasing with age. Early-stage disease is marked by normal vision, but retinal changes (drusen and pigment changes). Disease progression leads to worsening central vision, but peripheral vision is preserved. Methods and outcomes We conducted a systematic review and aimed to answer the following clinical questions: What are the effects of interventions to prevent progression of early- or late-stage age-related macular degeneration; and exudative age-related macular degeneration? We searched: Medline, Embase, The Cochrane Library and other important databases up to March 2006 (BMJ Clinical Evidence reviews are updated periodically, please check our website for the most up-to-date version of this review). We included harms alerts from relevant organisations such as the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). Results We found 45 systematic reviews, RCTs, or observational studies that met our inclusion criteria. We performed a GRADE evaluation of the quality of evidence for interventions. Conclusions In this systematic review we present information relating to the effectiveness and safety of the following interventions: antiangiogenesis (using pegaptanib, ranibizumab, interferon alfa-2a, or anecortave acetate), antioxidant vitamins plus zinc, external beam radiation, laser treatment to drusen, photodynamic therapy with verteporfin, submacular surgery, thermal laser photocoagulation, transpupillary thermotherapy. PMID:19454069

  2. Retinal remodeling triggered by photoreceptor degenerations.

    PubMed

    Jones, Bryan W; Watt, Carl B; Frederick, Jeanne M; Baehr, Wolfgang; Chen, Ching-Kang; Levine, Edward M; Milam, Ann H; Lavail, Matthew M; Marc, Robert E

    2003-09-01

    Many photoreceptor degenerations initially affect rods, secondarily leading to cone death. It has long been assumed that the surviving neural retina is largely resistant to this sensory deafferentation. New evidence from fast retinal degenerations reveals that subtle plasticities in neuronal form and connectivity emerge early in disease. By screening mature natural, transgenic, and knockout retinal degeneration models with computational molecular phenotyping, we have found an extended late phase of negative remodeling that radically changes retinal structure. Three major transformations emerge: 1) Mller cell hypertrophy and elaboration of a distal glial seal between retina and the choroid/retinal pigmented epithelium; 2) apparent neuronal migration along glial surfaces to ectopic sites; and 3) rewiring through evolution of complex neurite fascicles, new synaptic foci in the remnant inner nuclear layer, and new connections throughout the retina. Although some neurons die, survivors express molecular signatures characteristic of normal bipolar, amacrine, and ganglion cells. Remodeling in human and rodent retinas is independent of the initial molecular targets of retinal degenerations, including defects in the retinal pigmented epithelium, rhodopsin, or downstream phototransduction elements. Although remodeling may constrain therapeutic intervals for molecular, cellular, or bionic rescue, it suggests that the neural retina may be more plastic than previously believed. PMID:12866125

  3. Cortical basal ganglionic degeneration.

    PubMed

    Scarmeas, N; Chin, S S; Marder, K

    2001-10-01

    In this case study, we describe the symptoms, neuropsychological testing, and brain pathology of a retired mason's assistant with cortical basal ganglionic degeneration (CBGD). CBGD is an extremely rare neurodegenerative disease that is categorized under both Parkinsonian syndromes and frontal lobe dementias. It affects men and women nearly equally, and the age of onset is usually in the sixth decade of life. CBGD is characterized by Parkinson's-like motor symptoms and by deficits of movement and cognition, indicating focal brain pathology. Neuronal cell loss is ultimately responsible for the neurological symptoms. PMID:14602941

  4. Cortical Basal Ganglionic Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Scarmeas, Nikolaos; Chin, Steven S.; Marder, Karen

    2011-01-01

    In this case study, we describe the symptoms, neuropsychological testing, and brain pathology of a retired mason's assistant with cortical basal ganglionic degeneration (CBGD). CBGD is an extremely rare neurodegenerative disease that is categorized under both Parkinsonian syndromes and frontal lobe dementias. It affects men and women nearly equally, and the age of onset is usually in the sixth decade of life. CBGD is characterized by Parkinson's-like motor symptoms and by deficits of movement and cognition, indicating focal brain pathology. Neuronal cell loss is ultimately responsible for the neurological symptoms. PMID:14602941

  5. The degenerate gravitino scenario

    SciTech Connect

    Boubekeur, Lotfi; Vives, Oscar; Choi, Ki Young; Austri, Roberto Ruiz de E-mail: kiyoung.choi@uam.es E-mail: oscar.vives@uv.es

    2010-04-01

    In this work, we explore the ''degenerate gravitino'' scenario where the mass difference between the gravitino and the lightest MSSM particle is much smaller than the gravitino mass itself. In this case, the energy released in the decay of the next to lightest sypersymmetric particle (NLSP) is reduced. Consequently the cosmological and astrophysical constraints on the gravitino abundance, and hence on the reheating temperature, become softer than in the usual case. On the other hand, such small mass splittings generically imply a much longer lifetime for the NLSP. We find that, in the constrained MSSM (CMSSM), for neutralino LSP or NLSP, reheating temperatures compatible with thermal leptogenesis are reached for small splittings of order 10{sup −2} GeV. While for stau NLSP, temperatures of T{sub RH} ≅ 4 × 10{sup 9}GeV can be obtained even for splittings of order of tens of GeVs. This ''degenerate gravitino'' scenario offers a possible way out to the gravitino problem for thermal leptogenesis in supersymmetric theories.

  6. 4-fold enhancement in the critical current density of YBa{sub 2}Cu{sub 3}O{sub 7} films by practical ion irradiation

    SciTech Connect

    Matsui, H.; Ogiso, H.; Yamasaki, H.; Kumagai, T.; Sohma, M.; Yamaguchi, I.; Manabe, T.

    2012-12-03

    We report an up-to-4-fold enhancement in the in-magnetic-field critical current density at 77 K of epitaxial YBa{sub 2}Cu{sub 3}O{sub 7} films on CeO{sub 2}-buffered SrTiO{sub 3} substrates by 3-MeV Au{sup 2+} irradiation. This indicates that irradiation using an industrially practical ion beam, which generally has kinetic energy less than 5 MeV, can provide a substantial increase in the in-field current performance of high-temperature superconductor films. Transmission electron microscopy results show that point-like defects smaller than 6 nm in diameter were created in the films by the irradiation.

  7. Unraveling of the E-helices and Disruption of 4-Fold Pores Are Associated with Iron Mishandling in a Mutant Ferritin Causing Neurodegeneration

    SciTech Connect

    Baraibar, Martin A.; Muhoberac, Barry B.; Garringer, Holly J.; Hurley, Thomas D.; Vidal, Ruben

    2010-03-12

    Mutations in the coding sequence of the ferritin light chain (FTL) gene cause a neurodegenerative disease known as neuroferritinopathy or hereditary ferritinopathy, which is characterized by the presence of intracellular inclusion bodies containing the mutant FTL polypeptide and by abnormal accumulation of iron in the brain. Here, we describe the x-ray crystallographic structure and report functional studies of ferritin homopolymers formed from the mutant FTL polypeptide p.Phe167SerfsX26, which has a C terminus that is altered in amino acid sequence and length. The structure was determined and refined to 2.85 {angstrom} resolution and was very similar to the wild type between residues Ile-5 and Arg-154. However, instead of the E-helices normally present in wild type ferritin, the C-terminal sequences of all 24 mutant subunits showed substantial amounts of disorder, leading to multiple C-terminal polypeptide conformations and a large disruption of the normally tiny 4-fold axis pores. Functional studies underscored the importance of the mutant C-terminal sequence in iron-induced precipitation and revealed iron mishandling by soluble mutant FTL homopolymers in that only wild type incorporated iron when in direct competition in solution with mutant ferritin. Even without competition, the amount of iron incorporation over the first few minutes differed severalfold. Our data suggest that disruption at the 4-fold pores may lead to direct iron mishandling through attenuated iron incorporation by the soluble form of mutant ferritin and that the disordered C-terminal polypeptides may play a major role in iron-induced precipitation and formation of ferritin inclusion bodies in hereditary ferritinopathy.

  8. Helicoidal peripapillary chorioretinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Sveinsson, K

    1979-02-01

    A family with helicoidal peripapillary chorioretinal degeneration is described. This is a rare bilateral fundus affection--only seven more or less typical cases have been reported in the literature. 21 patients from the same family in four generations were examined, 10 men and 11 women. Seven men and six women showed a helicoidal affection. Of this number, there were 11 children aged from 4-17 years, six were girls of whom three had helicoidal fundus and five were boys of whom two were affected. General examination revealed nothing of particular interest. We have here a congenital hereditary fundus anomaly or minor malformation in four generations--young people with normal visual acuity who develop with age a clear tendency to invasion of the macular region by a degenerative process. This is most dangerous for the visual acuity when the atropic helicoidal wings lie in or near the macula region. PMID:419979

  9. [Helicoidal peripapillary chorioretinal degeneration (HCPD)].

    PubMed

    Brydak-Godowska, Joanna; Drbecka-Brydak, Ewa; Switka-Bachnik, Elzbieta; Ciszewska, Joanna

    2007-01-01

    Helicoidal peripapillary chorioretinal degeneration (HCPD) is characterized by bilateral wing- shaped atrophic areas in retina, radiating from the optic disc. Two cases (women: 23 and 58 years old) of this rare degeneration are presented. No changes of eye fundus and erg, eog, visual field evaluations had been noticed during 2 years follow-up. PMID:17687914

  10. Imaging frontotemporal lobar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Diehl-Schmid, Janine; Onur, Oezguer A; Kuhn, Jens; Gruppe, Traugott; Drzezga, Alexander

    2014-10-01

    The term frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) refers to a group of neurodegenerative disorders that target the frontal and temporal lobes. It accounts for approximately 10 % of pathologically confirmed dementias but has been demonstrated to be as prevalent as Alzheimer's disease in patients below the age of 65. The 3 major clinical syndromes associated with FTLD include behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia, semantic and nonfluent variants of primary progressive aphasia. The more recently introduced term logopenic variant appears to represent an atypical form of Alzheimer's disease in the majority of cases. The neuropathology underlying these clinical syndromes is very heterogeneous and does not correlate well with the clinical phenotype. This causes great difficulties in early and reliable diagnosis and treatment of FTLD. However, significant advances have been made in recent years via the application of magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography imaging methods as biomarkers. The current review aims to provide a synopsis on the value of magnetic resonance imaging-based and molecular imaging procedures in FTLD. PMID:25171901

  11. Salzmann's Nodular Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Maharana, Prafulla K; Sharma, Namrata; Das, Sujata; Agarwal, Tushar; Sen, Seema; Prakash, Gaurav; Vajpayee, Rasik B

    2016-01-01

    Salzmann's nodular degeneration (SND) is a rare, noninflammatory, slowly progressive degenerative disease of the cornea that is characterized by the appearance of nodular bluish gray opacities that vary in number and size. It is usually bilateral; most commonly occurring in people aged 50-60 years old, with a female preponderance; and often associated with a history of prior corneal inflammation. The clinical features usually depend on the location of the nodules. Generally, the nodules of SND are bluish white to gray in color, 1-2 mm in size, and round, conical or prismatic in shape. The overlying Bowman's layer is usually absent from the nodular areas and is partially replaced by granular Periodic Acid Schiff-positive eosinophilic material resembling the basement membrane. Diagnostic investigations include ultrasonic pachymetry, anterior segment optical coherence tomography, ultrasound biomicroscopy, and confocal microscopy. The majority of patients respond well to conservative management with topical lubricants; severe cases may require surgical intervention. The various surgical modalities described include superficial keratectomy, which may be combined with phototherapeutic keratectomy and keratoplasty. Various modifications of these procedures include the use of alcohol-assisted epithelial delamination, intraoperative mitomycin-C or amniotic membrane transplantation to make the procedure easy, reduce the risk of recurrence and improve postoperative comfort. Recurrences are rarely reported; overall, the visual prognosis following treatment is optimal. PMID:26462409

  12. Epidermal cells are the primary phagocytes in the fragmentation and clearance of degenerating dendrites in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Hui; Wang, Denan; Franc, Nathalie C.; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh-Nung

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY During developmental remodeling, neurites destined for pruning often degenerate on-site. Physical injury also induces degeneration of neurites distal to the injury site. Prompt clearance of degenerating neurites is important for maintaining tissue homeostasis and preventing inflammatory responses. Here we show that in both dendrite pruning and dendrite injury of Drosophila sensory neurons, epidermal cells rather than hemocytes are the primary phagocytes in clearing degenerating dendrites. Epidermal cells act via Draper-mediated recognition to facilitate dendrite degeneration and to engulf and degrade degenerating dendrites. Using multiple dendritic membrane markers to trace phagocytosis, we show that two members of the CD36 family, croquemort (crq) and debris buster (dsb), act at distinct stages of phagosome maturation for dendrite clearance. Our finding reveals the physiological importance of coordination between neurons and their surrounding epidermis, for both dendrite fragmentation and clearance. PMID:24412417

  13. Age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed Central

    O'Shea, J. G.

    1998-01-01

    Macular degeneration is now responsible for approximately 95% of blindness and partial sighted registrations in the UK. This review has been written specifically to make the general medical community of the UK aware of the prevalence and clinical manifestations of aged-related macular degeneration. The review encompasses the risk factors, the disabilities and problems experienced by suffers of the condition and current therapeutic options. Age related macular degeneration increases in prevalence in our community from 0% among people under 55 years old to 18.5% among those 85 years or older. There is a marked female preponderance. The exudative form of the disorder is commoner. Treatment remains supportive for most patients with macular degeneration although a minority will benefit from macular laser photocoagulation. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 PMID:9683972

  14. [Age related macular degeneration].

    PubMed

    Helgadttir, Gudleif; Jnasson, Fridbert; Sigurdsson, Haraldur; Magnsson, Kristinn P; Stefnsson, Einar

    2006-10-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the main reason for blindness today in the western hemisphere. According to Bjrn Olafsson, who was the first ophthalmologist in Iceland a century ago, this disease was not found in Iceland. In the blindness-registry of 1950 6% blindness was due to this disease. Today, AMD is responsible for 54% of legal blindness in Iceland. The incidence of the disease increases with age. Heredity and environmental factors are thought to influence its etiology. Indirect methods, including twin studies and increased frequency of this disease in some families, have demonstrated that hereditary factors may be important. This has been confirmed recently by demonstrating that genes on chromosome 1 and chromosome10 play a role. This disease is classified as early stage, with drusen and pigmentary changes and insignificant visual loss. Treatment options for this stage are limited. The use of vitamin E and C and Zinc has, however, been shown to delay its progress. The second and end stage involves visual loss, either as a dry form with pigment epithelial atrophy or wet form, with new vessel formation. Treatment options for the dry form are limited. The second form is more common in Iceland than in other countries. Treatment options for the wet form have increased. Localised laser and drug treatment to neovascular membranes, either alone or as a combination treatment with drugs that have anti-proliferate effect on new vessels (anti-VEGF) are increasingly used. New treatment methods are also used in assisting those that are already visually handicapped. The use of computers is increasing as are the patients' computer skills. As the number of the elderly increases, AMD will be an increasing health problem in Iceland as in other Western countries. It is therefore important to improve the treatment options and the service and counselling of patients. PMID:17062902

  15. Frontotemporal lobar degeneration: current perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Riedl, Lina; Mackenzie, Ian R; Frstl, Hans; Kurz, Alexander; Diehl-Schmid, Janine

    2014-01-01

    The term frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) refers to a group of progressive brain diseases, which preferentially involve the frontal and temporal lobes. Depending on the primary site of atrophy, the clinical manifestation is dominated by behavior alterations or impairment of language. The onset of symptoms usually occurs before the age of 60 years, and the mean survival from diagnosis varies between 3 and 10 years. The prevalence is estimated at 15 per 100,000 in the population aged between 45 and 65 years, which is similar to the prevalence of Alzheimers disease in this age group. There are two major clinical subtypes, behavioral-variant frontotemporal dementia and primary progressive aphasia. The neuropathology underlying the clinical syndromes is also heterogeneous. A common feature is the accumulation of certain neuronal proteins. Of these, the microtubule-associated protein tau (MAPT), the transactive response DNA-binding protein, and the fused in sarcoma protein are most important. Approximately 10% to 30% of FTLD shows an autosomal dominant pattern of inheritance, with mutations in the genes for MAPT, progranulin (GRN), and in the chromosome 9 open reading frame 72 (C9orf72) accounting for more than 80% of familial cases. Although significant advances have been made in recent years regarding diagnostic criteria, clinical assessment instruments, neuropsychological tests, cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers, and brain imaging techniques, the clinical diagnosis remains a challenge. To date, there is no specific pharmacological treatment for FTLD. Some evidence has been provided for serotonin reuptake inhibitors to reduce behavioral disturbances. No large-scale or high-quality studies have been conducted to determine the efficacy of non-pharmacological treatment approaches in FTLD. In view of the limited treatment options, caregiver education and support is currently the most important component of the clinical management. PMID:24600223

  16. Frontotemporal lobar degeneration: current perspectives.

    PubMed

    Riedl, Lina; Mackenzie, Ian R; Frstl, Hans; Kurz, Alexander; Diehl-Schmid, Janine

    2014-01-01

    The term frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) refers to a group of progressive brain diseases, which preferentially involve the frontal and temporal lobes. Depending on the primary site of atrophy, the clinical manifestation is dominated by behavior alterations or impairment of language. The onset of symptoms usually occurs before the age of 60 years, and the mean survival from diagnosis varies between 3 and 10 years. The prevalence is estimated at 15 per 100,000 in the population aged between 45 and 65 years, which is similar to the prevalence of Alzheimer's disease in this age group. There are two major clinical subtypes, behavioral-variant frontotemporal dementia and primary progressive aphasia. The neuropathology underlying the clinical syndromes is also heterogeneous. A common feature is the accumulation of certain neuronal proteins. Of these, the microtubule-associated protein tau (MAPT), the transactive response DNA-binding protein, and the fused in sarcoma protein are most important. Approximately 10% to 30% of FTLD shows an autosomal dominant pattern of inheritance, with mutations in the genes for MAPT, progranulin (GRN), and in the chromosome 9 open reading frame 72 (C9orf72) accounting for more than 80% of familial cases. Although significant advances have been made in recent years regarding diagnostic criteria, clinical assessment instruments, neuropsychological tests, cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers, and brain imaging techniques, the clinical diagnosis remains a challenge. To date, there is no specific pharmacological treatment for FTLD. Some evidence has been provided for serotonin reuptake inhibitors to reduce behavioral disturbances. No large-scale or high-quality studies have been conducted to determine the efficacy of non-pharmacological treatment approaches in FTLD. In view of the limited treatment options, caregiver education and support is currently the most important component of the clinical management. PMID:24600223

  17. A porous 4-fold-interpenetrated chiral framework exhibiting vapochromism, single-crystal-to-single-crystal solvent exchange, gas sorption, and a poisoning effect.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Ming-Hua; Tan, Yan-Xi; He, Yan-Ping; Yin, Zheng; Chen, Qing; Kurmoo, Mohamedally

    2013-03-01

    The synthesis and characterization of a 4-fold-interpenetrated pseudodiamond metal-organic framework (MOF), Co(II)(pybz)22DMF [pybz = 4-(4-pyridyl)benzoate], are reported. N,N-Dimethylformamide (DMF) of the channels can be removed to give the porous framework, and it can also be exchanged for methanol, ethanol, benzene, and cyclohexane. It is a rare example of a stable MOF based on a single octahedral building unit. The single-crystal structures of Co(II)(pybz)22DMF, Co(II)(pybz)2, Co(II)(pybz)24MeOH, and Co(II)(pybz)22.5EtOH have been successfully determined. In all of them, the framework is marginally modified and contains a highly distorted and strained octahedral node of cobalt with two pyridine nitrogen atoms and two chelate carboxylate groups. In air, the crystals of Co(II)(pybz)22DMF readily change color from claret red to light pink. Thermogravimetric analysis and Raman spectroscopy indicate a change in coordination, where the carboxylate becomes monodentate and an additional two water molecules are coordinated to each cobalt atom. In a dry solvent, this transformation does not take place. Tests show that Co(II)(pybz)2 may be a more efficient drying agent than silica gel and anhydrous CuSO4. The desolvated Co(II)(pybz)2 can absorb several gases such as CO2, N2, H2, and CH4 and also vapors of methanol, ethanol, benzene, and cyclohexane. If Co(II)(pybz)2 is exposed to air and followed by reactivation, its sorption capacity is considerably reduced, which we associate with a poisoning effect. Because of the long distance between the cobalt atoms in the structure, the magnetic properties are those of a paramagnet. PMID:23398593

  18. The crystal structure of ferritin from Chlorobium tepidum reveals a new conformation of the 4-fold channel for this protein family.

    PubMed

    Arenas-Salinas, Mauricio; Townsend, Philip D; Brito, Christian; Marquez, Valeria; Marabolli, Vanessa; Gonzalez-Nilo, Fernando; Matias, Cata; Watt, Richard K; Lpez-Castro, Juan D; Domnguez-Vera, Jos; Pohl, Ehmke; Yvenes, Alejandro

    2014-11-01

    Ferritins are ubiquitous iron-storage proteins found in all kingdoms of life. They share a common architecture made of 24 subunits of five ?-helices. The recombinant Chlorobium tepidum ferritin (rCtFtn) is a structurally interesting protein since sequence alignments with other ferritins show that this protein has a significantly extended C-terminus, which possesses 12 histidine residues as well as several aspartate and glutamic acid residues that are potential metal ion binding residues. We show that the macromolecular assembly of rCtFtn exhibits a cage-like hollow shell consisting of 24 monomers that are related by 4-3-2 symmetry; similar to the assembly of other ferritins. In all ferritins of known structure the short fifth ?-helix adopts an acute angle with respect to the four-helix bundle. However, the crystal structure of the rCtFtn presented here shows that this helix adopts a new conformation defining a new assembly of the 4-fold channel of rCtFtn. This conformation allows the arrangement of the C-terminal region into the inner cavity of the protein shell. Furthermore, two Fe(III) ions were found in each ferroxidase center of rCtFtn, with an average FeA-FeB distance of 3?; corresponding to a diferric ?-oxo/hydroxo species. This is the first ferritin crystal structure with an isolated di-iron center in an iron-storage ferritin. The crystal structure of rCtFtn and the biochemical results presented here, suggests that rCtFtn presents similar biochemical properties reported for other members of this protein family albeit with distinct structural plasticity. PMID:25079050

  19. Testicular degeneration in Huntington disease.

    PubMed

    Van Raamsdonk, Jeremy M; Murphy, Zoe; Selva, David M; Hamidizadeh, Reza; Pearson, Jacqueline; Petersn, Asa; Bjrkqvist, Maria; Muir, Cameron; Mackenzie, Ian R; Hammond, Geoffrey L; Vogl, A Wayne; Hayden, Michael R; Leavitt, Blair R

    2007-06-01

    Huntington disease (HD) is an adult onset, neurodegenerative disorder that results from CAG expansion in the HD gene. Recent work has demonstrated testicular degeneration in mouse models of HD and alterations in the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis in HD patients. Here, we show that HD patients have specific testicular pathology with reduced numbers of germ cells and abnormal seminiferous tubule morphology. In the YAC128 mouse model, testicular degeneration develops prior to 12 months of age, but at 12 months, there is no evidence for decreased testosterone levels or loss of GnRH neurons in the hypothalamus. This suggests that testicular pathology results from a direct toxic effect of mutant huntingtin in the testis and is supported by the fact that huntingtin is highly expressed in the affected cell populations in the testis. Understanding the pathogenesis of HD in the testis may reveal common critical pathways which lead to degeneration in both the brain and testis. PMID:17433700

  20. Macular Degeneration - Multiple Languages: MedlinePlus

    MedlinePLUS

    ... Are Here: Home ? Multiple Languages ? All Health Topics ? Macular Degeneration URL of this page: https://www.nlm.nih. ... V W XYZ List of All Topics All Macular Degeneration - Multiple Languages To use the sharing features on ...

  1. What Is Age-Related Macular Degeneration?

    MedlinePLUS

    ... D. Español Eye Health / Eye Health A-Z Age-Related Macular Degeneration Sections What Is Age-Related ... Age-Related Macular Degeneration Vision Simulator What Is Age-Related Macular Degeneration? Written by: Kierstan Boyd Reviewed ...

  2. Neurosyphilis masquerading as corticobasal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Benito-Len, J; Alvarez-Linera, J; Louis, E D

    2004-11-01

    We report on a patient with a syndrome resembling corticobasal ganglionic degeneration (CBD), including slight cognitive impairment, asymmetric akinesia, rigidity with myoclonus, and arm levitation, which can be one of the features of alien limb phenomenon; however, further diagnostic testing was consistent with neurosyphilis. Syphilis, "the great imitator," may also masquerade as CBD. Because neurosyphilis is treatable, it should be considered in the workup of patients with cognitive impairment and motor signs of CBD. PMID:15389980

  3. Glial Vascular Degeneration in CADASIL

    PubMed Central

    Brennan-Krohn, Thea; Salloway, Stephen; Correia, Stephen; Dong, Matthew; de la Monte, Suzanne M.

    2010-01-01

    Background CADASIL is a genetic vascular dementia caused by mutations in the Notch 3 gene on Chromosome 19. However, little is known about the mechanisms of vascular degeneration. Methods We characterized upstream components of Notch signaling pathways that may be disrupted in CADASIL, by measuring expression of insulin, IGF-1, and IGF-2 receptors, Notch 1, Notch 3, and aspartyl-(asparaginyl)-?-hydroxylase (AAH) in cortex and white matter from 3 CADASIL and 6 control brains. We assessed CADASIL-associated cell loss by measuring mRNA corresponding to neurons, oligodendroglia, and astrocytes, and indices of vascular degeneration by measuring smooth muscle actin (SMA) and endothelin-1 (ET-1) expression in isolated vessels. Immunohistochemical staining was used to assess SMA degeneration. Results Significant abnormalities including reduced cerebral white matter mRNA levels of Notch 1, Notch 3, AAH, SMA, IGF receptors, myelin-associated glycoproteins, and glial fibrillary acidic protein, and reduced vascular expression of SMA, IGF receptors, Notch 1 and Notch 3 were detected in CADASIL-lesioned brains. In addition, we found CADASIL-associated reductions in SMA, and increases in ubiquitin immunoreactivity in the media of white matter and meningeal vessels. No abnormalities in gene expression or immunoreactivity were observed in CADASIL cerebral cortex. Conclusions Molecular abnormalities in CADASIL are largely restricted to white matter and white matter vessels, corresponding to the distribution of neuropathological lesions. These preliminary findings suggest that CADASIL is mediated by both glial and vascular degeneration with reduced expression of IGF receptors and AAH, which regulate Notch expression and function. PMID:21504125

  4. General Pathophysiology in Retinal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Wert, Katherine J.; Lin, Jonathan H.; Tsang, Stephen H.

    2015-01-01

    Retinal degeneration, including that seen in age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa (RP), is the most common form of neural degenerative disease in the world. There is great genetic and allelic heterogeneity of the various retinal dystrophies. Classifications of these diseases can be ambiguous, as there are similar clinical presentations in retinal degenerations arising from different genetic mechanisms. As would be expected, alterations in the activity of the phototransduction cascade, such as changes affecting the renewal and shedding of the photoreceptor OS, visual transduction, and/ or retinol metabolism have a great impact on the health of the retina. Mutations within any of the molecules responsible for these visual processes cause several types of retinal and retinal pigment epithelium degenerative diseases. Apoptosis has been implicated in the rod cell loss seen in a mouse model of RP, but the precise mechanisms that connect the activation of these pathways to the loss of phosphodiesterase (PDE6?) function has yet to be defined. Additionally, the activation of apoptosis by CCAAT/-enhancer-binding protein homologous protein (CHOP), after activation of the unfolded protein response pathway, may be responsible for cell death, although the mechanism remains unknown. However, the mechanisms of cell death after loss of function of PDE6, which is a commonly studied mammalian model in research, may be generalizable to loss of function of different key proteins involved in the phototransduction cascade. PMID:24732759

  5. General pathophysiology in retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Wert, Katherine J; Lin, Jonathan H; Tsang, Stephen H

    2014-01-01

    Retinal degeneration, including that seen in age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa (RP), is the most common form of neural degenerative disease in the world. There is great genetic and allelic heterogeneity of the various retinal dystrophies. Classifications of these diseases can be ambiguous, as there are similar clinical presentations in retinal degenerations arising from different genetic mechanisms. As would be expected, alterations in the activity of the phototransduction cascade, such as changes affecting the renewal and shedding of the photoreceptor OS, visual transduction, and/or retinol metabolism have a great impact on the health of the retina. Mutations within any of the molecules responsible for these visual processes cause several types of retinal and retinal pigment epithelium degenerative diseases. Apoptosis has been implicated in the rod cell loss seen in a mouse model of RP, but the precise mechanisms that connect the activation of these pathways to the loss of phosphodiesterase (PDE6β) function has yet to be defined. Additionally, the activation of apoptosis by CCAAT/-enhancer-binding protein homologous protein (CHOP), after activation of the unfolded protein response pathway, may be responsible for cell death, although the mechanism remains unknown. However, the mechanisms of cell death after loss of function of PDE6, which is a commonly studied mammalian model in research, may be generalizable to loss of function of different key proteins involved in the phototransduction cascade. PMID:24732759

  6. Genetics, Pregnancy, and Aortic Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Crawford, Jeffrey D; Hsieh, Cindy M; Schenning, Ryan C; Slater, Matthew S; Landry, Gregory J; Moneta, Gregory L; Mitchell, Erica L

    2016-01-01

    We present a case of familial thoracic aortic aneurysm and dissection (FTAAD) in a pregnant female. FTAAD is an inherited, nonsyndromic aortopathy resulting from several genetic mutations critical to aortic wall integrity have been identified. One such mutation is the myosin heavy chain gene (MYH11) which is responsible for 1-2% of all FTAAD cases. This mutation results in aortic medial degeneration, loss of elastin, and reticulin fiber fragmentation predisposing to TAAD. Aortic disease is more aggressive during pregnancy as a result of increased wall stress from hyperdynamic cardiovascular changes and estrogen-induced aortic media degeneration. Our patient was a 29-year-old G2P1 woman at 26weeks gestation presenting with abdominal and back pain. Work-up revealed a 6.4-cm ascending aortic aneurysm with a type A dissection extending into all arch vessels, aortic coarctation at the isthmus, and a separate focal type B aortic dissection with visceral involvement. Surgical management included concomitant cesarean section with delivery of a live premature infant, tubal ligation, ascending aortic replacement with reconstruction of the arch vessels, and aortic valve resuspension. The type B dissection was managed medically without complication. This is the first reported case of aortic dissection in a patient with FTAAD/MYH11 mutation and pregnancy. This case highlights that FTAAD and pregnancy cause aortic degeneration via distinct mechanisms and that hyperdynamics of pregnancy increase aortic wall stress. Management of pregnancy associated with aortopathy requires early transfer to a tertiary center, careful investigation to identify familial aortopathy, fetal monitoring, and a multidisciplinary team approach. PMID:26381327

  7. Degeneration of a Nonrecombining Chromosome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rice, William R.

    1994-01-01

    Comparative studies suggest that sex chromosomes begin as ordinary autosomes that happen to carry a major sex determining locus. Over evolutionary time the Y chromosome is selected to stop recombining with the X chromosome, perhaps in response to accumulation of alleles beneficial to the heterogametic but harmful to the homogametic sex. Population genetic theory predicts that a nonrecombining Y chromosome should degenerate. Here this prediction is tested by application of specific selection pressures to Drosophila melanogaster populations. Results demonstrate the decay of a nonrecombining, nascent Y chromosome and the capacity for recombination to ameliorate such decay.

  8. Age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Querques, Giuseppe; Avellis, Fernando Onofrio; Querques, Lea; Bandello, Francesco; Souied, Eric H

    2011-01-01

    Clinical question: Is there any new knowledge about the pathogenesis and treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD)? Results: We now understand better the biochemical and pathological pathways involved in the genesis of AMD. Treatment of exudative AMD is based on intravitreal injection of new antivascular endothelial growth factor drugs for which there does not yet exist a unique recognized strategy of administration. No therapies are actually available for atrophic AMD, despite some experimental new pharmacological approaches. Implementation: strategy of administration, safety of intravitreal injection PMID:21654887

  9. Mathematical glimpse on the Y chromosome degeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobo, M. P.

    2006-04-01

    The Y chromosomes are genetically degenerate and do not recombine with their matching partners X. Non-recombination of XY pairs has been pointed out as the key factor for the degeneration of the Y chromosome. The aim here is to show that there is a mathematical asymmetry in sex chromosomes which leads to the degeneration of Y chromosomes even in the absence of XX and XY recombination. A model for sex-chromosome evolution in a stationary regime is proposed. The consequences of their asymmetry are analyzed and lead us to a couple of conclusions. First, Y chromosome degeneration shows up sqrt{2} more often than X chromosome degeneration. Second, if nature prohibits female mortalities from beeing exactly 50%, then Y chromosome degeneration is inevitable.

  10. New mouse primary retinal degeneration (rd-3)

    SciTech Connect

    Chang, B.; Hawes, N.L.; Roderick, T.H. ); Heckenlively, J.R. )

    1993-04-01

    A new mouse retinal degeneration that appears to be an excellent candidate for modeling human retinitis pigmentosa is reported. In this degeneration, called rd-3, differentiation proceeds postnatally through 2 weeks, and photoreceptor degeneration starts by 3 weeks. The rod photoreceptor loss is essentially complete by 5 weeks, whereas remnant cone cells are seen through 7 weeks. This is the only mouse homozygous retinal degeneration reported to date in which photoreceptors are initially normal. Crosses with known mouse retinal degenerations rd, Rds, nr, and pcd are negative for retinal degeneration in offspring, and linkage analysis places rd-3 on mouse chromosome 1 at 10 [+-]2.5 cM distal to Akp-1. Homology mapping suggests that the homologous human locus should be on chromosome 1q. 32 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  11. Degenerate oligonucleotide-primed PCR: general amplification of target DNA by a single degenerate primer.

    PubMed

    Telenius, H; Carter, N P; Bebb, C E; Nordenskjöld, M; Ponder, B A; Tunnacliffe, A

    1992-07-01

    A version of the polymerase chain reaction (PCR), termed degenerate oligonucleotide-primed PCR (DOP-PCR), which employs oligonucleotides of partially degenerate sequence, has been developed for genome mapping studies. This degeneracy, together with a PCR protocol utilizing a low initial annealing temperature, ensures priming from multiple (e.g., approximately 10(6) in human) evenly dispersed sites within a given genome. Furthermore, as efficient amplification is achieved from the genomes of all species tested using the same primer, the method appears to be species-independent. Thus, for the general amplification of target DNA, DOP-PCR has advantages over interspersed repetitive sequence PCR (IRS-PCR), which relies on the appropriate positioning of species-specific repeat elements. In conjunction with chromosome flow sorting, DOP-PCR has been applied to the characterization of abnormal chromosomes and also to the cloning of new markers for specific chromosome regions. DOP-PCR therefore represents a rapid, efficient, and species-independent technique for general DNA amplification. PMID:1639399

  12. Laser therapy and macular degeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menchini, Ugo; Virgili, Gianni; Giansanti, Fabrizio; Giacomelli, Giovanni; Cappelli, Stefania

    2001-10-01

    Among macular diseases, choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is one of the most common causes of visual loss, especially in the form associated with age-related macular degeneration and pathologic myopia. Research on these diseases has recently evaluated new treatment modalities that use laser light differently; among these, photodynamic therapy (PDT) has been introduced in the clinical practice, allowing us to expand the possibility of reducing visual loss in patients affected by CNV. With PDT, a photosensitizer (verteporfin, VisudyneTM) is injected intravenously, and it selectively binds to new vessels; low-power laser light exposure then activates the drug, leading to oxidative damage of the endothelium and new vessels thrombosis. Yet, other therapies, such as transpupillary termotherapy, or the use of photocoagulation to cause feeder-vessel occlusion, could proof effective, but they need further investigation.

  13. Genetics of Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Galimberti, Daniela; Scarpini, Elio

    2012-01-01

    Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), the most frequent neurodegenerative disorder with a presenile onset, presents with a spectrum of clinical manifestations, ranging from behavioral and executive impairment to language disorders and motor dysfunction. Familial aggregation is frequently reported, and about 10% of cases have an autosomal dominant transmission. Microtubule associated protein tau (MAPT) gene mutations have been the first ones identified and are associated with early onset behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia phenotype. More recently, progranulin gene (GRN) mutations were recognized in association with familial form of FTLD. In addition, other genes are linked to rare cases of familial FTLD. Lastly, a number of genetic risk factors for sporadic forms have also been identified. In this review, current knowledge about mutations at the basis of familial FTLD will be described, together with genetic risk factors influencing the susceptibility to FTLD. PMID:22536193

  14. Degenerate doping of metallic anodes

    DOEpatents

    Friesen, Cody A; Zeller, Robert A; Johnson, Paul B; Switzer, Elise E

    2015-05-12

    Embodiments of the invention relate to an electrochemical cell comprising: (i) a fuel electrode comprising a metal fuel, (ii) a positive electrode, (iii) an ionically conductive medium, and (iv) a dopant; the electrodes being operable in a discharge mode wherein the metal fuel is oxidized at the fuel electrode and the dopant increases the conductivity of the metal fuel oxidation product. In an embodiment, the oxidation product comprises an oxide of the metal fuel which is doped degenerately. In an embodiment, the positive electrode is an air electrode that absorbs gaseous oxygen, wherein during discharge mode, oxygen is reduced at the air electrode. Embodiments of the invention also relate to methods of producing an electrode comprising a metal and a doped metal oxidation product.

  15. Pollen Tube Discharge Completes the Process of Synergid Degeneration That Is Initiated by Pollen Tube-Synergid Interaction in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Leydon, Alexander R; Tsukamoto, Tatsuya; Dunatunga, Damayanthi; Qin, Yuan; Johnson, Mark A; Palanivelu, Ravishankar

    2015-09-01

    In flowering plant reproduction, pollen tube reception is the signaling system that results in pollen tube discharge, synergid degeneration, and successful delivery of male gametes (two sperm cells) to the site where they can fuse with female gametes (egg cell and central cell). Some molecules required for this complex and essential signaling exchange have been identified; however, fundamental questions about the nature of the interactions between the pollen tube and the synergid cells remain to be clarified. Here, we monitor pollen tube arrival, pollen tube discharge, and synergid degeneration in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) wild type and in male and female gametophytic mutants that disrupt development and function of the gametophytes. By combining assays used previously to study these interactions and an assay that facilitates simultaneous analysis of pollen tube discharge and synergid degeneration, we find that synergid degeneration could be initiated without pollen tube discharge. Our data support the hypothesis that pollen tube-synergid contact, or signaling via secreted molecules, initiates receptive synergid degeneration. We also find that when pollen tubes successfully burst, they always discharge into a degenerated synergid. In addition to this pollen tube-dependent promotion of synergid degeneration, we also show that a basal developmental pathway mediates synergid degeneration in the absence of pollination. Our results are consistent with the model that a complex set of interactions between the pollen tube and synergid cells promote receptive synergid degeneration. PMID:26229050

  16. Advances in the management of macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Current management of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) can be divided into two categories: first, anti-vasoendothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) injection for wet macular degeneration; second, anti-oxidant vitamins for dry macular degeneration. New therapies are being developed for both of these diseases using novel technologies and different modes of administration. The hope is that some of these therapies will achieve significant improvement to current management and prevent future loss of vision in this devastating eye condition. PMID:24860651

  17. A Monte Carlo algorithm for degenerate plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Turrell, A.E. Sherlock, M.; Rose, S.J.

    2013-09-15

    A procedure for performing Monte Carlo calculations of plasmas with an arbitrary level of degeneracy is outlined. It has possible applications in inertial confinement fusion and astrophysics. Degenerate particles are initialised according to the FermiDirac distribution function, and scattering is via a Pauli blocked binary collision approximation. The algorithm is tested against degenerate electronion equilibration, and the degenerate resistivity transport coefficient from unmagnetised first order transport theory. The code is applied to the cold fuel shell and alpha particle equilibration problem of inertial confinement fusion.

  18. Advances in the management of macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Singer, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Current management of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) can be divided into two categories: first, anti-vasoendothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) injection for wet macular degeneration; second, anti-oxidant vitamins for dry macular degeneration. New therapies are being developed for both of these diseases using novel technologies and different modes of administration. The hope is that some of these therapies will achieve significant improvement to current management and prevent future loss of vision in this devastating eye condition. PMID:24860651

  19. Total absorption by degenerate critical coupling

    SciTech Connect

    Piper, Jessica R. Liu, Victor; Fan, Shanhui

    2014-06-23

    We consider a mirror-symmetric resonator with two ports. We show that, when excited from a single port, complete absorption can be achieved through critical coupling to degenerate resonances with opposite symmetry. Moreover, any time two resonances with opposite symmetry are degenerate in frequency and absorption is always significantly enhanced. In contrast, when two resonances with the same symmetry are nearly degenerate, there is no absorption enhancement. We numerically demonstrate these effects using a graphene monolayer on top of a photonic crystal slab, illuminated from a single side in the near-infrared.

  20. Degenerate coding in neural systems.

    PubMed

    Leonardo, Anthony

    2005-11-01

    When the dimensionality of a neural circuit is substantially larger than the dimensionality of the variable it encodes, many different degenerate network states can produce the same output. In this review I will discuss three different neural systems that are linked by this theme. The pyloric network of the lobster, the song control system of the zebra finch, and the odor encoding system of the locust, while different in design, all contain degeneracies between their internal parameters and the outputs they encode. Indeed, although the dynamics of song generation and odor identification are quite different, computationally, odor recognition can be thought of as running the song generation circuitry backwards. In both of these systems, degeneracy plays a vital role in mapping a sparse neural representation devoid of correlations onto external stimuli (odors or song structure) that are strongly correlated. I argue that degeneracy between input and output states is an inherent feature of many neural systems, which can be exploited as a fault-tolerant method of reliably learning, generating, and discriminating closely related patterns. PMID:16252121

  1. Genetics Home Reference: Stargardt macular degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... people with Stargardt macular degeneration, a fatty yellow pigment (lipofuscin) builds up in cells underlying the macula. ... acids ; gene ; inheritance ; inherited ; juvenile ; lipofuscin ; macula ; photoreceptor ; pigment ; prevalence ; protein ; recessive ; retina ; tissue ; toxic You may ...

  2. Parkinson's Drug Shows Promise Against Macular Degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... nih.gov/medlineplus/news/fullstory_155695.html Parkinson's Drug Shows Promise Against Macular Degeneration But more research ... no one is recommending that patients take the drug, levodopa (L-dopa), to thwart eye disease. But ...

  3. Degenerate primer design for highly variable genomes.

    PubMed

    Li, Kelvin; Shrivastava, Susmita; Stockwell, Timothy B

    2015-01-01

    The application of degenerate PCR primers towards target amplification and sequencing is a useful technique when a population of organisms under investigation is evolving rapidly, or is highly diverse. Degenerate bases in these primers are specified with ambiguity codes that represent alternative nucleotide configurations. Degenerate PCR primers allow the simultaneous amplification of a heterogeneous population by providing a mixture of PCR primers each of which anneal to an alternative genotype found in the isolated sample. However, as the number of degenerate bases specified in a pair of primers rises, the likelihood of amplifying unwanted alternative products also increases. These alternative products may confound downstream data analyses if their levels begin to obfuscate the desired PCR products. This chapter describes a set of computational methodologies that may be used to minimize the degeneracy of designed primers, while still maximizing the proportion of genotypes assayed in the targeted population. PMID:25697654

  4. I-degenerate pseudo-Riemannian metrics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hervik, Sigbjrn; Haarr, Anders; Yamamoto, Kei

    2015-12-01

    In this paper we study pseudo-Riemannian spaces with a degenerate curvature structure i.e.there exists a continuous family of metrics having identical polynomial curvature invariants. We approach this problem by utilising an idea coming from invariant theory. This involves the existence of a boost which is assumed to extend to a neighbourhood. This approach proves to be very fruitful: It produces a class of metrics containing all known examples of I-degenerate metrics. To date, only Kundt and Walker metrics have been given, however, our study gives a plethora of examples showing that I-degenerate metrics extend beyond the Kundt and Walker examples. The approach also gives a useful criterion for a metric to be I-degenerate. Specifically, we use this to study the subclass of VSI and CSI metrics (i.e.,spaces where polynomial curvature invariants are all vanishing or constants, respectively).

  5. Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

    MedlinePLUS

    ... Research at NEI Education Programs Training and Jobs Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) Listen AMD Defined AMD ... of Cases between 2000 and 2010 2010 U.S. Age-Specific Prevalence Rates for AMD by Age and ...

  6. Neural remodeling in retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Marc, Robert E; Jones, Bryan W; Watt, Carl B; Strettoi, Enrica

    2003-09-01

    Mammalian retinal degenerations initiated by gene defects in rods, cones or the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) often trigger loss of the sensory retina, effectively leaving the neural retina deafferented. The neural retina responds to this challenge by remodeling, first by subtle changes in neuronal structure and later by large-scale reorganization. Retinal degenerations in the mammalian retina generally progress through three phases. Phase 1 initiates with expression of a primary insult, followed by phase 2 photoreceptor death that ablates the sensory retina via initial photoreceptor stress, phenotype deconstruction, irreversible stress and cell death, including bystander effects or loss of trophic support. The loss of cones heralds phase 3: a protracted period of global remodeling of the remnant neural retina. Remodeling resembles the responses of many CNS assemblies to deafferentation or trauma, and includes neuronal cell death, neuronal and glial migration, elaboration of new neurites and synapses, rewiring of retinal circuits, glial hypertrophy and the evolution of a fibrotic glial seal that isolates the remnant neural retina from the surviving RPE and choroid. In early phase 2, stressed photoreceptors sprout anomalous neurites that often reach the inner plexiform and ganglion cell layers. As death of rods and cones progresses, bipolar and horizontal cells are deafferented and retract most of their dendrites. Horizontal cells develop anomalous axonal processes and dendritic stalks that enter the inner plexiform layer. Dendrite truncation in rod bipolar cells is accompanied by revision of their macromolecular phenotype, including the loss of functioning mGluR6 transduction. After ablation of the sensory retina, Mller cells increase intermediate filament synthesis, forming a dense fibrotic layer in the remnant subretinal space. This layer invests the remnant retina and seals it from access via the choroidal route. Evidence of bipolar cell death begins in phase 1 or 2 in some animal models, but depletion of all neuronal classes is evident in phase 3. As remodeling progresses over months and years, more neurons are lost and patches of the ganglion cell layer can become depleted. Some survivor neurons of all classes elaborate new neurites, many of which form fascicles that travel hundreds of microns through the retina, often beneath the distal glial seal. These and other processes form new synaptic microneuromas in the remnant inner nuclear layer as well as cryptic connections throughout the retina. Remodeling activity peaks at mid-phase 3, where neuronal somas actively migrate on glial surfaces. Some amacrine and bipolar cells move into the former ganglion cell layer while other amacrine cells are everted through the inner nuclear layer to the glial seal. Remodeled retinas engage in anomalous self-signaling via rewired circuits that might not support vision even if they could be driven anew by cellular or bionic agents. We propose that survivor neurons actively seek excitation as sources of homeostatic Ca(2+) fluxes. In late phase 3, neuron loss continues and the retina becomes increasingly glial in composition. Retinal remodeling is not plasticity, but represents the invocation of mechanisms resembling developmental and CNS plasticities. Together, neuronal remodeling and the formation of the glial seal may abrogate many cellular and bionic rescue strategies. However, survivor neurons appear to be stable, healthy, active cells and given the evidence of their reactivity to deafferentation, it may be possible to influence their emergent rewiring and migration habits. PMID:12892644

  7. Age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Lily K; Eaton, Angie

    2013-08-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness in the elderly, and the prevalence of the disease increases exponentially with every decade after age 50 years. It is a multifactorial disease involving a complex interplay of genetic, environmental, metabolic, and functional factors. Besides smoking, hypertension, obesity, and certain dietary habits, a growing body of evidence indicates that inflammation and the immune system may play a key role in the development of the disease. AMD may progress from the early form to the intermediate form and then to the advanced form, where two subtypes exist: the nonneovascular (dry) type and the neovascular (wet) type. The results from the Age-Related Eye Disease Study have shown that for the nonneovascular type of AMD, supplementation with high-dose antioxidants (vitamin C, vitamin E, and β-carotene) and zinc is recommended for those with the intermediate form of AMD in one or both eyes or with advanced AMD or vision loss due to AMD in one eye. As for the neovascular type of the advanced AMD, the current standard of therapy is intravitreal injections of vascular endothelial growth factor inhibitors. In addition, lifestyle and dietary modifications including improved physical activity, reduced daily sodium intake, and reduced intake of solid fats, added sugars, cholesterol, and refined grain foods are recommended. To date, no study has demonstrated that AMD can be cured or effectively prevented. Clearly, more research is needed to fully understand the pathophysiology as well as to develop prevention and treatment strategies for this devastating disease. PMID:23580402

  8. Reduced Cytosolic Protein Synthesis Suppresses Mitochondrial Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaowen; Zuo, Xiaoming; Kucejova, Blanka; Chen, Xin Jie

    2009-01-01

    Mitochondrial function degenerates during aging and in aging-related neuromuscular degenerative diseases, which leads to the physiological decline of the cell1. Factors that can delay the degenerative process are actively sought after. Here, we show that reduced cytosolic protein synthesis is a robust cellular strategy that suppresses aging-related mitochondrial degeneration. We modelled the adult-or later-onset degenerative disease, autosomal dominant Progressive External Ophthalmoplegia (adPEO), by introducing the A128P mutation into the yeast adenine nucleotide translocase, Aac2p. The aac2A128P allele dominantly induces aging-dependent mitochondrial degeneration and phenotypically tractable degenerative cell death independent of its ADP/ATP exchange activity. Mitochondrial degeneration is suppressed by lifespan-extending nutritional interventions and by 8 longevity mutations, which are all known to reduce cytosolic protein synthesis. These longevity interventions also independently suppress aging-related mitochondrial degeneration in the pro-aging prohibitin mutants. The aac2A128P mutant has reduced mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm) and is synthetically lethal to low Δψm conditions, including the loss of prohibitin. Mitochondrial degeneration is accelerated by defects in protein turnover on the inner membrane and is suppressed by cycloheximide, a specific inhibitor of cytosolic ribosomes. Reduced cytosolic protein synthesis suppresses membrane depolarization and defects in mitochondrial gene expression in aac2A128P cells. Our finding thus provides a link between protein homeostasis (proteostasis), cellular bioenergetics and mitochondrial maintenance during aging. PMID:19160490

  9. Microscopic Observation of Pauli Blocking in Degenerate Fermionic Lattice Gases.

    PubMed

    Omran, Ahmed; Boll, Martin; Hilker, Timon A; Kleinlein, Katharina; Salomon, Guillaume; Bloch, Immanuel; Gross, Christian

    2015-12-31

    The Pauli exclusion principle is one of the most fundamental manifestations of quantum statistics. Here, we report on its local observation in a spin-polarized degenerate gas of fermions in an optical lattice. We probe the gas with single-site resolution using a new generation quantum gas microscope avoiding the common problem of light induced losses. In the band insulating regime, we measure a strong local suppression of particle number fluctuations and a low local entropy per atom. Our work opens a new avenue for studying quantum correlations in fermionic quantum matter both in and out of equilibrium. PMID:26764988

  10. Microscopic Observation of Pauli Blocking in Degenerate Fermionic Lattice Gases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Omran, Ahmed; Boll, Martin; Hilker, Timon A.; Kleinlein, Katharina; Salomon, Guillaume; Bloch, Immanuel; Gross, Christian

    2015-12-01

    The Pauli exclusion principle is one of the most fundamental manifestations of quantum statistics. Here, we report on its local observation in a spin-polarized degenerate gas of fermions in an optical lattice. We probe the gas with single-site resolution using a new generation quantum gas microscope avoiding the common problem of light induced losses. In the band insulating regime, we measure a strong local suppression of particle number fluctuations and a low local entropy per atom. Our work opens a new avenue for studying quantum correlations in fermionic quantum matter both in and out of equilibrium.

  11. Peripheral glia have a pivotal role in the initial response to axon degeneration of peripheral sensory neurons in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Pope, Holly M; Voigt, Mark M

    2014-01-01

    Axon degeneration is a feature of many peripheral neuropathies. Understanding the organismal response to this degeneration may aid in identifying new therapeutic targets for treatment. Using a transgenic zebrafish line expressing a bacterial nitroreductase (Ntr)/mCherry fusion protein in the peripheral sensory neurons of the V, VII, IX, and X cranial nerves, we were able to induce and visualize the pathology of axon degeneration in vivo. Exposure of 4 days post fertilization Ntr larvae to the prodrug metronidazole (Met), which Ntr metabolizes into cytotoxic metabolites, resulted in dose-dependent cell death and axon degeneration. This was limited to the Ntr-expressing sensory neurons, as neighboring glia and motor axons were unaffected. Cell death was rapid, becoming apparent 3-4 hours after Met treatment, and was followed by phagocytosis of soma and axon debris by cells within the nerves and ganglia beginning at 4-5 hours of exposure. Although neutrophils appear to be activated in response to the degenerating neurons, they did not accumulate at the sites of degeneration. In contrast, macrophages were found to be attracted to the sites of the degenerating axons, where they phagocytosed debris. We demonstrated that peripheral glia are critical for both the phagocytosis and inflammatory response to degenerating neurons: mutants that lack all peripheral glia (foxD3-/-; Ntr) exhibit a much reduced reaction to axonal degeneration, resulting in a dramatic decrease in the clearance of debris, and impaired macrophage recruitment. Overall, these results show that this zebrafish model of peripheral sensory axon degeneration exhibits many aspects common to peripheral neuropathies and that peripheral glia play an important role in the initial response to this process. PMID:25058656

  12. Prospectives for Gene Therapy of Retinal Degenerations

    PubMed Central

    Thumann, Gabriele

    2012-01-01

    Retinal degenerations encompass a large number of diseases in which the retina and associated retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells progressively degenerate leading to severe visual disorders or blindness. Retinal degenerations can be divided into two groups, a group in which the defect has been linked to a specific gene and a second group that has a complex etiology that includes environmental and genetic influences. The first group encompasses a number of relatively rare diseases with the most prevalent being Retinitis pigmentosa that affects approximately 1 million individuals worldwide. Attempts have been made to correct the defective gene by transfecting the appropriate cells with the wild-type gene and while these attempts have been successful in animal models, human gene therapy for these inherited retinal degenerations has only begun recently and the results are promising. To the second group belong glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic retinopathy (DR). These retinal degenerations have a genetic component since they occur more often in families with affected probands but they are also linked to environmental factors, specifically elevated intraocular pressure, age and high blood sugar levels respectively. The economic and medical impact of these three diseases can be assessed by the number of individuals affected; AMD affects over 30 million, DR over 40 million and glaucoma over 65 million individuals worldwide. The basic defect in these diseases appears to be the relative lack of a neurogenic environment; the neovascularization that often accompanies these diseases has suggested that a decrease in pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), at least in part, may be responsible for the neurodegeneration since PEDF is not only an effective neurogenic and neuroprotective agent but also a potent inhibitor of neovascularization. In the last few years inhibitors of vascularization, especially antibodies against vascular endothelial cell growth factors (VEGF), have been used to prevent the neovascularization that accompanies AMD and DR resulting in the amelioration of vision in a significant number of patients. In animal models it has been shown that transfection of RPE cells with the gene for PEDF and other growth factors can prevent or slow degeneration. A limited number of studies in humans have also shown that transfection of RPE cells in vivo with the gene for PEDF is effective in preventing degeneration and restore vision. Most of these studies have used virally mediated gene delivery with all its accompanying side effects and have not been widely used. New techniques using non-viral protocols that allow efficient delivery and permanent integration of the transgene into the host cell genome offer novel opportunities for effective treatment of retinal degenerations. PMID:23372421

  13. Antioxidative nanofullerol prevents intervertebral disk degeneration.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xinlin; Jin, Li; Yao, Lu; Shen, Francis H; Shimer, Adam L; Li, Xudong

    2014-01-01

    Compelling evidence suggests that reactive oxygen species (ROS) play a pivotal role in disk degeneration. Fullerol nanoparticles prepared in aqueous solution have been demonstrated to have outstanding ability to scavenge ROS. In this report, in vitro and in vivo models were used to study the efficacy of fullerol in preventing disk degeneration. For in vitro experiments, a pro-oxidant H2O2 or an inflammatory cytokine interleukin (IL)-1? was employed to induce degenerated phenotypes in human nucleus pulposus cells encapsulated in alginate beads, and fullerol was added in the culture medium. For the animal study, an annulus-puncture model with rabbit was created, and fullerol was injected into disks. It was shown that cytotoxicity and cellular ROS level induced by H2O2 were significantly diminished by fullerol. IL-1?-induced nitric oxide generation in culture medium was suppressed by fullerol as well. Gene-profile and biochemical assays showed that fullerol effectively reversed the matrix degradation caused by either H2O2 or IL-1?. The animal study delineated that intradiskal injection of fullerol prevented disk degeneration, increasing water and proteoglycan content and inhibiting ectopic bone formation. These results suggest that antioxidative fullerol may have a potential therapeutic application for disk degeneration. PMID:24876775

  14. Antioxidative nanofullerol prevents intervertebral disk degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xinlin; Jin, Li; Yao, Lu; Shen, Francis H; Shimer, Adam L; Li, Xudong

    2014-01-01

    Compelling evidence suggests that reactive oxygen species (ROS) play a pivotal role in disk degeneration. Fullerol nanoparticles prepared in aqueous solution have been demonstrated to have outstanding ability to scavenge ROS. In this report, in vitro and in vivo models were used to study the efficacy of fullerol in preventing disk degeneration. For in vitro experiments, a pro-oxidant H2O2 or an inflammatory cytokine interleukin (IL)-1β was employed to induce degenerated phenotypes in human nucleus pulposus cells encapsulated in alginate beads, and fullerol was added in the culture medium. For the animal study, an annulus-puncture model with rabbit was created, and fullerol was injected into disks. It was shown that cytotoxicity and cellular ROS level induced by H2O2 were significantly diminished by fullerol. IL-1β-induced nitric oxide generation in culture medium was suppressed by fullerol as well. Gene-profile and biochemical assays showed that fullerol effectively reversed the matrix degradation caused by either H2O2 or IL-1β. The animal study delineated that intradiskal injection of fullerol prevented disk degeneration, increasing water and proteoglycan content and inhibiting ectopic bone formation. These results suggest that antioxidative fullerol may have a potential therapeutic application for disk degeneration. PMID:24876775

  15. Optic pathway degeneration in Japanese black cattle

    PubMed Central

    CHIBA, Shiori; FUNATO, Shingo; HORIUCHI, Noriyuki; MATSUMOTO, Kotaro; INOKUMA, Hisashi; FURUOKA, Hidefumi; KOBAYASHI, Yoshiyasu

    2014-01-01

    Degeneration of the optic pathway has been reported in various animal species including cattle. We experienced a case of bilateral optic tract degeneration characterized by severe gliosis in a Japanese black cattle without any obvious visual defects. To evaluate the significance, pathological nature and pathogenesis of the lesions, we examined the optic pathway in 60 cattle (41 Japanese black, 13 Holstein and 6 crossbreed) with or without ocular abnormalities. None of these animals had optic canal stenosis. Degenerative changes with severe gliosis in the optic pathway, which includes the optic nerve, optic chiasm and optic tract, were only observed in 8 Japanese black cattle with or without ocular abnormalities. Furthermore, strong immunoreactivity of glial fibrillary acidic protein was observed in the retinal stratum opticum and ganglion cell layer in all 5 cattle in which the optic pathway lesions could be examined. As etiological research, we also examined whether the concentrations of vitamin A and vitamin B12 or bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) infection was associated with optic pathway degeneration. However, our results suggested that the observed optic pathway degeneration was probably not caused by these factors. These facts indicate the presence of optic pathway degeneration characterized by severe gliosis that has never been reported in cattle without bilateral compressive lesions in the optic pathway or bilateral severe retinal atrophy. PMID:25421501

  16. [Neuropsychological profile of frontotemporal lobar degeneration].

    PubMed

    Carmona-Abelln, M M; Luquin, M R; Lamet, I; Pujol Gimnez, N; Esteve-Belloch, P; Rivero, M

    2015-01-01

    Frontotemporal lobar degeneration encompasses three different syndromes, with clinical and pathologic commonalities, making diagnosis difficult in early stages. Three subtypes are recognized: frontotemporal dementia and its three variants, corticobasal syndrome and supranuclear palsy syndrome. The objective of this study is to review the neuropsychological features of each syndrome in order to differentiate amongst subtypes as well as from other forms of dementia. We review multiple studies from the literature, highlighting the main clinical features, neuropathology and changes in brain imaging of each syndrome. Subsequently, we describe the neuropsychological profile compared to other dementias, and how it progresses over time. Although there is an overlap amongst the different subtypes of frontotemporal lobar degeneration, neuropsychological profiles can help identify subtypes and discriminate frontotemporal lobar degeneration from other forms of dementia. PMID:25963461

  17. Retinal Cell Degeneration in Animal Models.

    PubMed

    Niwa, Masayuki; Aoki, Hitomi; Hirata, Akihiro; Tomita, Hiroyuki; Green, Paul G; Hara, Akira

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this review is to provide an overview of various retinal cell degeneration models in animal induced by chemicals (N-methyl-d-aspartate- and CoCl?-induced), autoimmune (experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis), mechanical stress (optic nerve crush-induced, light-induced) and ischemia (transient retinal ischemia-induced). The target regions, pathology and proposed mechanism of each model are described in a comparative fashion. Animal models of retinal cell degeneration provide insight into the underlying mechanisms of the disease, and will facilitate the development of novel effective therapeutic drugs to treat retinal cell damage. PMID:26784179

  18. Pathogenesis of tendinopathies: inflammation or degeneration?

    PubMed Central

    Abate, Michele; Gravare-Silbernagel, Karin; Siljeholm, Carl; Di Iorio, Angelo; De Amicis, Daniele; Salini, Vincenzo; Werner, Suzanne; Paganelli, Roberto

    2009-01-01

    The intrinsic pathogenetic mechanisms of tendinopathies are largely unknown and whether inflammation or degeneration has the prominent role is still a matter of debate. Assuming that there is a continuum from physiology to pathology, overuse may be considered as the initial disease factor; in this context, microruptures of tendon fibers occur and several molecules are expressed, some of which promote the healing process, while others, including inflammatory cytokines, act as disease mediators. Neural in-growth that accompanies the neovessels explains the occurrence of pain and triggers neurogenic-mediated inflammation. It is conceivable that inflammation and degeneration are not mutually exclusive, but work together in the pathogenesis of tendinopathies. PMID:19591655

  19. CT of sarcomatous degeneration in neurofibromatosis

    SciTech Connect

    Coleman, B.G.; Arger, P.H.; Dalinka, M.K.; Obringer, A.C.; Raney, B.R.; Meadows, A.T.

    1983-02-01

    Neurofibromatosis is a relatively common disorder that often involves many organ systems. One of the least understood aspects of this malady is a well documented potential for sarcomatous degeneration of neurofibromas. The inability to identify patients at risk and the lack of noninvasive screening methods for symptomatic patients often leads to late diagnosis. In six of seven subsequently proven neurofibrosarcomas, CT demonstrated low-density areas that histopathologically appeared to be due to necrosis, hemorrhage, and/or cystic degeneration. The density differences within these sarcomas were enhanced by the intravenous adminstration of iodinated contrast agents.

  20. Kinematic control of robot with degenerate wrist

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barker, L. K.; Moore, M. C.

    1984-01-01

    Kinematic resolved rate equations allow an operator with visual feedback to dynamically control a robot hand. When the robot wrist is degenerate, the computed joint angle rates exceed operational limits, and unwanted hand movements can result. The generalized matrix inverse solution can also produce unwanted responses. A method is introduced to control the robot hand in the region of the degenerate robot wrist. The method uses a coordinated movement of the first and third joints of the robot wrist to locate the second wrist joint axis for movement of the robot hand in the commanded direction. The method does not entail infinite joint angle rates.

  1. Histone Deacetylase: Therapeutic Targets in Retinal Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Daly, Conor; Yin, Jun; Kennedy, Breandn N

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies report that retinitis pigmentosa (RP) patients treated with the histone deacetylase inhibitor (HDACi) valproic acid (VPA) present with improved visual fields and delayed vision loss. However, other studies report poor efficacy and safety of HDACi in other cohorts of retinal degeneration patients. Furthermore, the molecular mechanisms by which HDACi can improve visual function is unknown, albeit HDACi can attenuate pro-apoptotic stimuli and induce expression of neuroprotective factors. Thus, further analysis of HDACi is warranted in pre-clinical models of retinal degeneration including zebrafish. Analysis of HDAC expression in developing zebrafish reveals diverse temporal expression patterns during development and maturation of visual function. PMID:26427446

  2. Retinal Cell Degeneration in Animal Models

    PubMed Central

    Niwa, Masayuki; Aoki, Hitomi; Hirata, Akihiro; Tomita, Hiroyuki; Green, Paul G.; Hara, Akira

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this review is to provide an overview of various retinal cell degeneration models in animal induced by chemicals (N-methyl-d-aspartate- and CoCl2-induced), autoimmune (experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis), mechanical stress (optic nerve crush-induced, light-induced) and ischemia (transient retinal ischemia-induced). The target regions, pathology and proposed mechanism of each model are described in a comparative fashion. Animal models of retinal cell degeneration provide insight into the underlying mechanisms of the disease, and will facilitate the development of novel effective therapeutic drugs to treat retinal cell damage. PMID:26784179

  3. Alzheimer neurofibrillary degeneration: significance, etiopathogenesis, therapeutics and prevention

    PubMed Central

    Iqbal, K; Grundke-Iqbal, I

    2008-01-01

    Abstract Alzheimer disease (AD) is multi-factorial and heterogeneous. Independent of the aetiology, this disease is characterized clinically by chronic and progressive dementia and histopathologically by neurofibrillary degeneration of abnormally hyperphosphorylated tau seen as intraneuronal neurofibrillary tangles, neuropil threads and dystrophic neurites, and by neuritic (senile) plaques of β-amyloid. The neurofibrillary degeneration is apparently required for the clinical expression of AD, and in related tauopathies it leads to dementia in the absence of amyloid plaques. While normal tau promotes assembly and stabilizes microtubules, the abnormally hyperphosphorylated tau sequesters normal tau, MAP1 and MAP2, and disrupts microtubules. The abnormal hyperphosphorylation of tau also promotes its self-assembly into tangles of paired helical and or straight filaments. Tau is phosphorylated by a number of protein kinases. Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) and cyclin dependent protein kinase 5 (cdk5) are among the kinases most implicated in the abnormal hyperphosphorylation of tau. Among the phosphatases which regulate the phosphorylation of tau, protein phosphatase-2A (PP-2A), the activity of which is down-regulated in AD brain, is by far the major enzyme. The inhibition of abnormal hyperphosphorylation of tau is one of the most promising therapeutic targets for the development of disease modifying drugs. A great advantage of inhibiting neurofibrillary degeneration is that it can be monitored by evaluating the levels of total tau and tau phosphorylated at various known abnormally hyperphosphorylated sites in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients, obtained by lumbar puncture. There are at least five subgroups of AD, each is probably caused by a different etiopathogenic mechanism. The AD subgroup identification of patients can help increase the success of clinical trials and the development of specific and potent disease modifying drugs. PMID:18194444

  4. Driving and Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Owsley, Cynthia; McGwin, Gerald, Jr.

    2008-01-01

    This article reviews the research literature on driving and age-related macular degeneration, which is motivated by the link between driving and the quality of life of older adults and their increased collision rate. It addresses the risk of crashes, driving performance, driving difficulty, self-regulation, and interventions to enhance, safety,

  5. Depression in Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Casten, Robin; Rovner, Barry

    2008-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a major cause of disability in the elderly, substantially degrades the quality of their lives, and is a risk factor for depression. Rates of depression in AMD are substantially greater than those found in the general population of older people, and are on par with those of other chronic and disabling

  6. Exploring Nonconvex, Crossed and Degenerate Polygons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Contreras, Jose N.

    2004-01-01

    An exploration of nonconvex, crossed, and degenerate polygons (NCCDPs) are described with the help of examples with pedagogical tips and recommendations that are found useful when teaching the mathematical process of extending geometric patterns to NCCDPs. The study concludes that investigating such extensions with interactive geometry software

  7. Retinal remodeling in inherited photoreceptor degenerations.

    PubMed

    Marc, Robert E; Jones, Bryan W

    2003-10-01

    Photoreceptor degenerations initiated in rods or the retinal pigmented epithelium usually evoke secondary cone death and sensory deafferentation of the surviving neural retina. In the mature central nervous system, deafferentation evokes atrophy and connective re-patterning. It has been assumed that the neural retina does not remodel, and that it is a passive survivor. Screening of advanced stages of human and rodent retinal degenerations with computational molecular phenotyping has exposed a prolonged period of aggressive negative remodeling in which neurons migrate along aberrant glial columns and seals, restructuring the adult neural retina (1). Many neurons die, but survivors rewire the remnant inner plexiform layer (IPL), forming thousands of novel ectopic microneuromas in the remnant inner nuclear layer (INL). Bipolar and amacrine cells engage in new circuits that are most likely corruptive. Remodeling in human and rodent retinas emerges regardless of the molecular defects that initially trigger retinal degenerations. Although remodeling may constrain therapeutic intervals for molecular, cellular, or bionic rescue, the exposure of intrinsic retinal remodeling by the removal of sensory control in retinal degenerations suggests that neuronal organization in the normal retina may be more plastic than previously believed. PMID:14576452

  8. Depression in Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Casten, Robin; Rovner, Barry

    2008-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a major cause of disability in the elderly, substantially degrades the quality of their lives, and is a risk factor for depression. Rates of depression in AMD are substantially greater than those found in the general population of older people, and are on par with those of other chronic and disabling…

  9. Tenascin-C and human tendon degeneration.

    PubMed

    Riley, G P; Harrall, R L; Cawston, T E; Hazleman, B L; Mackie, E J

    1996-09-01

    We investigated the distribution of tenascin in supraspinatus tendons to determine whether an alteration in tenascin expression was associated with human tendon degeneration. Tenascin was present in all of the tendons studied, although with two distinct patterns of expression. First, tenascin was associated with organized, fibrous regions of the tendon matrix that were typical of the normal tendon structure. This distribution is consistent with a role for tenascin in collagen fibril organization, perhaps maintaining the interface between fibrils and adjacent structures. Second, although tenascin was generally absent from poorly organized matrix in degenerate tendons, it was strongly associated with some rounded cells in disorganized fibrocartilaginous regions that were more abundant in pathological specimens. Tenascin was also found around infiltrating blood vessels, with more intense staining associated with a mononuclear cell infiltrate. Western blotting of tendon extracts showed differences in tenascin isoform expression, with only the small (200-kd) tenascin isoform found in normal tendons. Degenerate tendons also expressed the 300-kd isoform, consistent with a role for the larger tenascin isoform in tendon disease, potentially stimulating tenocyte proliferation, cell rounding, and fibrocartilaginous change. Proteolytic fragments of tenascin were detected but only in ruptured tendons, an indication of matrix remodeling in degenerate tendons, with fragment sizes consistent with the activity of matrix metalloproteinase enzymes. PMID:8780397

  10. Constitutive activation of phototransduction by K296E opsin is not a cause of photoreceptor degeneration.

    PubMed Central

    Li, T; Franson, W K; Gordon, J W; Berson, E L; Dryja, T P

    1995-01-01

    The missense mutation Lys-296-->Glu (K296E) in the rhodopsin gene produces an opsin with no chromophore binding site and therefore is not activated by light. Nevertheless, the mutant opsin constitutively activates transducin in vitro and causes photoreceptor degeneration in vivo, possibly by continuously activating the phototransduction cascade, analogous to constant exposure to environmental light. We studied the K296E mutation in eight lines of transgenic mice. Each line developed photoreceptor degeneration with the rate of degeneration increasing monotonically as the ratio of mutant:wild-type opsin mRNA increased. At no time in the course of degeneration was there endogenous light adaptation in the retina as measured by the electroretinogram. The mutant opsin was found to be invariably phosphorylated and stably bound to arrestin. Light-independent activation of transducin was demonstrated only after the removal of arrestin and dephosphorylation of K296E opsin. Thus, K296E opsin in vivo does not activate the phototransduction cascade because it is shut off by photoreceptor inactivation mechanisms. Our data show that the K296E mutation does not cause photoreceptor degeneration by continuous activation of phototransduction. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 PMID:7724596

  11. Pollen Tube Discharge Completes the Process of Synergid Degeneration That Is Initiated by Pollen Tube-Synergid Interaction in Arabidopsis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Leydon, Alexander R.; Tsukamoto, Tatsuya; Dunatunga, Damayanthi; Qin, Yuan; Johnson, Mark A.; Palanivelu, Ravishankar

    2015-01-01

    In flowering plant reproduction, pollen tube reception is the signaling system that results in pollen tube discharge, synergid degeneration, and successful delivery of male gametes (two sperm cells) to the site where they can fuse with female gametes (egg cell and central cell). Some molecules required for this complex and essential signaling exchange have been identified; however, fundamental questions about the nature of the interactions between the pollen tube and the synergid cells remain to be clarified. Here, we monitor pollen tube arrival, pollen tube discharge, and synergid degeneration in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) wild type and in male and female gametophytic mutants that disrupt development and function of the gametophytes. By combining assays used previously to study these interactions and an assay that facilitates simultaneous analysis of pollen tube discharge and synergid degeneration, we find that synergid degeneration could be initiated without pollen tube discharge. Our data support the hypothesis that pollen tube-synergid contact, or signaling via secreted molecules, initiates receptive synergid degeneration. We also find that when pollen tubes successfully burst, they always discharge into a degenerated synergid. In addition to this pollen tube-dependent promotion of synergid degeneration, we also show that a basal developmental pathway mediates synergid degeneration in the absence of pollination. Our results are consistent with the model that a complex set of interactions between the pollen tube and synergid cells promote receptive synergid degeneration. PMID:26229050

  12. Molecular pharmacodynamics of emixustat in protection against retinal degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jianye; Kiser, Philip D.; Badiee, Mohsen; Palczewska, Grazyna; Dong, Zhiqian; Golczak, Marcin; Tochtrop, Gregory P.; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2015-01-01

    Emixustat is a visual cycle modulator that has entered clinical trials as a treatment for age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This molecule has been proposed to inhibit the visual cycle isomerase RPE65, thereby slowing regeneration of 11-cis-retinal and reducing production of retinaldehyde condensation byproducts that may be involved in AMD pathology. Previously, we reported that all-trans-retinal (atRAL) is directly cytotoxic and that certain primary amine compounds that transiently sequester atRAL via Schiff base formation ameliorate retinal degeneration. Here, we have shown that emixustat stereoselectively inhibits RPE65 by direct active site binding. However, we detected the presence of emixustat-atRAL Schiff base conjugates, indicating that emixustat also acts as a retinal scavenger, which may contribute to its therapeutic effects. Using agents that lack either RPE65 inhibitory activity or the capacity to sequester atRAL, we assessed the relative importance of these 2 modes of action in protection against retinal phototoxicity in mice. The atRAL sequestrant QEA-B-001-NH2 conferred protection against phototoxicity without inhibiting RPE65, whereas an emixustat derivative incapable of atRAL sequestration was minimally protective, despite direct inhibition of RPE65. These data indicate that atRAL sequestration is an essential mechanism underlying the protective effects of emixustat and related compounds against retinal phototoxicity. Moreover, atRAL sequestration should be considered in the design of next-generation visual cycle modulators. PMID:26075817

  13. Cellular localization of cerebellar muscarinic receptors: an autoradiographic analysis of weaver, reeler, Purkinje cell degeneration and staggerer mice

    SciTech Connect

    Neustadt, A.; Frostholm, A.; Rotter, A.

    1988-02-01

    Light microscopic autoradiography of (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate binding sites was used to study the distribution of muscarinic cholinergic receptors in mouse mutants which have abnormalities affecting specific cerebellar cell types. In the normal C57BL/6J mouse, binding sites were distributed throughout the cerebellar cortex, with the highest levels in the granule cell layer and deep cerebellar nuclei. Normal binding site density was observed in the cerebellum of the weaver mutant in which the majority of granule cells had degenerated. The density of (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate binding sites was elevated in the cortex of the reeler, despite a reduction in the number of granule cells. The concentration of binding sites was also high over the Purkinje cell masses where granule cells were largely absent. No significant reduction in cortical (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate binding site density was detected in the Purkinje cell degeneration mutant, in which essentially all Purkinje cells had degenerated. In contrast, receptor binding in the deep cerebellar nuclei of this mutant was significantly increased. A substantial increase in labeling was observed in the cortex and deep nuclei of the staggerer cerebellum in which a large fraction of Golgi II cells, Purkinje cells, granule cells and mossy fibers have degenerated. We discuss the possibility that the persistence of (/sup 3/H)quinuclidinyl benzilate binding sites in all four mutants may imply a non-neuronal localization for a large proportion of muscarinic receptors in the mouse cerebellar cortex.

  14. Macular degeneration in an arc welder.

    PubMed

    Kim, Eun A; Kim, Byung-Gyu; Yi, Cheol-Ho; Kim, Il Gon; Chae, Chang-Ho; Kang, Seong-Kyu

    2007-04-01

    A male welder who had been working in an industrial machine plant for more than 20 years experienced acute intense pain in his left eye with continuous lacrimation while performing arc welding in 1997. Later in 1997, at the age of 39 yr, macular edema was found in his left eye. He was diagnosed with macular degeneration (MD) of the left eye in 2002, and with right eye MD in 2004. Radiation in the visible and near infrared (IR) spectra penetrates the eye and is absorbed by the retina, possibly causing thermal or photochemical damage. Such retinal damage may be permanent and, therefore, sight-threatening. The young age and history of an acute painful eye injury are not consistent with age related macular degeneration (AMD) but rather is likely maculopathy caused by welding arc exposure. PMID:17485886

  15. Shell nuclear explosions in degenerate dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuznetsov, O. A.; Tutukov, A. V.; Chechetkin, V. M.

    1989-08-01

    Numerical gas dynamics simulations are used to study shell nuclear explosions of degenerate carbon-oxygen dwarfs with masses of 1.17, 1.36, and 1.42 solar masses. It is assumed that the calorific capacity of the burning shell matter is between 5 X 10 to the 17th and 5 X 10 to the 18th erg/g. It is shown that, at a low calorific capacity, a remnant may form if the mass of the shell is less than 90 percent of the mass of the degenerate dwarf. In the case of high calorific capacity, a remnant may form only if the mass of the shell is less than half of the dwarf's mass.

  16. NEUTRINO PROCESSES IN PARTIALLY DEGENERATE NEUTRON MATTER

    SciTech Connect

    Bacca, S.; Hally, K.; Liebendoerfer, M.; Perego, A.; Pethick, C. J.; Schwenk, A.

    2012-10-10

    We investigate neutrino processes for conditions reached in simulations of core-collapse supernovae. In regions where neutrino-matter interactions play an important role, matter is partially degenerate, and we extend earlier work that addressed the degenerate regime. We derive expressions for the spin structure factor in neutron matter, which is a key quantity required for evaluating rates of neutrino processes. We show that, for essentially all conditions encountered in the post-bounce phase of core-collapse supernovae, it is a very good approximation to calculate the spin relaxation rates in the nondegenerate limit. We calculate spin relaxation rates based on chiral effective field theory interactions and find that they are typically a factor of two smaller than those obtained using the standard one-pion-exchange interaction alone.

  17. Inflammation in intervertebral disc degeneration and regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Molinos, Maria; Almeida, Catarina R.; Caldeira, Joana; Cunha, Carla; Gonçalves, Raquel M.; Barbosa, Mário A.

    2015-01-01

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is one of the major causes of low back pain, a problem with a heavy economic burden, which has been increasing in prevalence as populations age. Deeper knowledge of the complex spatial and temporal orchestration of cellular interactions and extracellular matrix remodelling is critical to improve current IVD therapies, which have so far proved unsatisfactory. Inflammation has been correlated with degenerative disc disease but its role in discogenic pain and hernia regression remains controversial. The inflammatory response may be involved in the onset of disease, but it is also crucial in maintaining tissue homeostasis. Furthermore, if properly balanced it may contribute to tissue repair/regeneration as has already been demonstrated in other tissues. In this review, we focus on how inflammation has been associated with IVD degeneration by describing observational and in vitro studies as well as in vivo animal models. Finally, we provide an overview of IVD regenerative therapies that target key inflammatory players. PMID:25673296

  18. Macular degeneration: a possible biochemical mechanism.

    PubMed

    Soloway, Albert H; Curley, Robert W; Soloway, Scott M

    2011-05-01

    The possible role of labile endogenous metabolites in the cause of various chronic debilitating diseases such as macular degeneration has not been adequately explored. In the metabolism of the various retinoids, namely retinal (vitamin A aldehyde), retinol (vitamin A alcohol) and retinoic acid, each has the potential for generating labile intermediates, such as their corresponding 5,6-epoxides by the action of various cytochrome P(450)s. Such retinoid epoxides may well have the capacity for acting as toxins upon the neurons in the macula unless they are rapidly hydrolyzed by epoxide hydrolases. Since the cytochrome P(450)s responsible for epoxide formation and the various epoxide hydrolases involved in their hydrolysis are determined genetically, this may serve to explain a genetic component being involved in the causation of age-related macular degeneration. PMID:21349651

  19. Seizures in corticobasal degeneration: a case report.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Vanja C; DeArmond, Stephen J; Aminoff, Michael J; Miller, Bruce L; Rabinovici, Gil D

    2009-08-01

    Seizures are relatively common in Alzheimer disease (AD) and other neurodegenerative disorders. To our knowledge, however, there have been no reports of seizures associated with corticobasal degeneration (CBD). We describe a patient with brain biopsy features suggestive of CBD whose course was complicated by complex partial seizures with secondary generalization. Thus, the occurrence of seizures in a patient with dementia should not exclude the diagnosis of CBD. PMID:19544144

  20. Asymmetrical alien hands in corticobasal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Fitzgerald, David B; Drago, Valeria; Jeong, Yong; Chang, Yu-Ling; White, Keith D; Heilman, Kenneth M

    2007-03-15

    There are several forms of alien limb, but alien limb in corticobasal degeneration (CBD) is not well understood. We studied a patient with CBD who demonstrated two different types of alien limb. With his right hand he demonstrated a tactile avoidance response with levitation. With his left hand, he demonstrated continuous tactile pursuit of the examiner's hand ("tactile mitgehen"). Mitgehen is often associated with frontal dysfunction, but avoidance response and levitation are often associated with parietal dysfunction. PMID:17230447

  1. Recombination-generation currents in degenerate semiconductors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Von Roos, O.

    1978-01-01

    The classical Shockley-Read-Hall theory of free carrier recombination and generation via traps is extended to degenerate semiconductors. A concise and simple expression is found which avoids completely the concept of a Fermi level, a concept which is alien to nonequilibrium situations. Assumptions made in deriving the recombination generation current are carefully delineated and are found to be basically identical to those made in the original theory applicable to nondegenerate semiconductors.

  2. Stem cell horizons in intervertebral disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Ciacci, Joseph; Ho, Allen; Ames, Christopher P; Jandial, Rahul

    2009-01-01

    Intervertebral disc degeneration remains a pervasive and intractable disease arising from a combination of aging and stress on the back and spine. The growing field of regenerative medicine brings the promise of stem cells in the treatment of disc disease. Scientists and physicians hope to employ stem cells not only to stop, but also reverse degeneration. However, there are many important outstanding issues, including the hostile avascular, apoptotic physiological environment of the intervertebral disc, and the difficulty of obtaining mesenchymal stem cells, and directing them towards chondrocytic differentiation and integration within the nucleus pulposus of the disc. Given the recent advances in minimally invasive spine surgery, and developing body of work on stem cell manipulation and transplantation, stem cells are uniquely poised to bring about large-scale improvements in treatment and outcomes for degenerative disc disease. In this review we will first discuss the cellular and molecular factors influencing degeneration, and then examine the efficacy and difficulties of stem cell transplantation. PMID:24198503

  3. Confirmation of Substellar and Degenerate Companion Candidates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patience, Jennifer; De Rosa, Robert; Vigan, Arthur

    2013-02-01

    With the AO-equipped NIRI instrument, we propose to obtain follow-up confirmation imaging of candidate substellar and degenerate companions to young, nearby A-stars discovered as a part of the two large-scale surveys: the IDPS (International Deep Planet Search) and VAST (Volume-limited A-STar) Surveys. The candidate substellar companions have masses covering the planet/brown dwarf transition (7 - 45 45 Mjup) at well-determined young ages between 30 and 400 Myrs and confirmed objects will serve as important benchmarks against which theoretical evolutionary and atmospheric models can be tested. Any confirmed substellar companions would cover either important intermediate ages or particularly low masses compared to isolated field brown dwarfs. The final target has an unusual pair of candidate co-moving objects that are potential white dwarfs, and would present a unique system of a quadruple composed of an A-star binary surrounded by a circumbinary debris disk with a wide pair of exceptionally young white dwarfs. This degenerate system would be another example of a Sirius B-type system, though unusual in containing two degenerate objects and a debris disk. In summary, the proposed observations are the critical follow-up measurements require to: estimate the frequency of wide orbit planetary mass and brown dwarf companions, and confirm the nature of a unique young quadruple system with a pair of white dwarfs.

  4. Exome Sequencing in Familial Corticobasal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Fekete, Robert; Bainbridge, Matthew; Baizabal-Carvallo, Jose Fidel; Rivera, Andreana; Miller, Bradley; Du, Peicheng; Kholodovich, Vladyslav; Powell, Suzanne; Ondo, William

    2014-01-01

    Background Corticobasal degeneration (CBD) is a neurodegenerative, sporadic disorder of unknown cause. Few familial cases have been described. Objective We aim to characterize the clinical, imaging, pathological and genetic features of two familial cases of CBD. Methods We describe two first cousins with CBD associated with atypical MRI findings. We performed exome sequencing in both subjects and in an unaffected first cousin of similar age. Results The cases include a 79-year-old woman and a 72-year-old man of Native American and British origin. The onset of the neurological manifestations was 74 and 68 years respectively. Both patients presented with a combination of asymmetric parkinsonism, apraxia, myoclonic tremor, cortical sensory syndrome, and gait disturbance. The female subject developed left side fixed dystonia. The manifestations were unresponsive to high doses of levodopa in both cases. Extensive bilateral T1-W hyperintensities and T2-W hypointensities in basal ganglia and thalamus were observed in the female patient; whereas these findings were more subtle in the male subject. Postmortem examination of both patients was consistent with corticobasal degeneration; the female patient had additional findings consistent with mild Alzheimer’s disease. No Lewy bodies were found in either case. Exome sequencing showed mutations leading to possible structural changes in MRS2 and ZHX2 genes, which appear to have the same upstream regulator miR-4277. Conclusions Corticobasal degeneration can have a familial presentation; the role of MRS2 and ZHX2 gene products in CBD should be further investigated. PMID:23867865

  5. Degeneration of spared axons following partial white matter lesion: implications for optic nerve neuropathies.

    PubMed

    Yoles, E; Schwartz, M

    1998-09-01

    Neuroprotective therapy is a relatively new development in the approach to the treatment of acute and chronic brain damage. Though initially viewed in the framework of acute CNS injuries, the concept was recently extended to include chronic injuries, in which at any given time there are some neurons in an acute phase of degeneration coexisting with others that are healthy, marginally damaged, or dead. The healthy neurons and those that are only marginally damaged are the potential targets for neuroprotection. For the development of neuroprotective therapies, it is essential to employ an animal model in which the damage resulting from secondary degeneration can be quantitatively distinguished from primary degeneration. This is of particular relevance when the site of the damage is in the white matter (nerve fibers) rather than in the gray matter (cell bodies). In the present work we reexamine the concepts of secondary degeneration and neuroprotection in white matter lesions. Using a partial crush injury of the adult rat optic nerve as a model, we were able to assess both primary and secondary nerve damage. We show that neurons whose axons were not damaged or only marginally damaged after an acute insult will eventually degenerate as a consequence of their existence in the degenerative environment produced by the injury. This secondary degeneration does not occur in all of the neurons at once, but affects them in a stepwise fashion related to the severity of the damage inflicted. These findings, which may be applicable to the progression of acute or chronic neuropathy, imply that neuroprotective therapy may have a beneficial effect even if there is a time lag between injury and treatment. PMID:9743562

  6. Retinal degenerations in the dog: IV. Early retinal degeneration (erd) in Norwegian elkhounds.

    PubMed

    Acland, G M; Aguirre, G D

    1987-04-01

    A new early onset hereditary retinal degeneration is characterized in Norwegian elkhound dogs. This disease, termed early retinal degeneration (erd), was studied in 10 affected dogs, from 30 days- to 7 years old, clinically, by electroretinography, and by light- and electron-microscopic morphology. Control studies were performed on 49 non-affected dogs. Affected dogs are initially nightblind, and become totally blind between 12- and 18 months of age. The postnatal development of their rod and cone photoreceptors is abnormal both structurally and functionally. Morphologically, rod and cone inner- and outer-segment growth occurs but appears uncoordinated. Adjacent rods become very disparate in the size and proportions of their inner- and outer segments. Prominent villiform processes extend from the inner segments of rods and, to a lesser extent, cones. Synaptic terminals of rods and cones fail to develop properly. The b-wave of the electroretinogram fails to develop and the electroretinogram (ERG) remains a-wave-dominated. Subsequent to these abnormalities of development, the rods and cones degenerate, rapidly at first and later more gradually. In normal dogs, development of the ERG a- and b-waves is shown to follow, respectively, morphologic development of the photoreceptor outer segments and synaptic terminals. Similarly the abnormal development and subsequent degeneration of photoreceptor outer segments and synaptic terminals in affected dogs, correspond in time course to development and degeneration of the ERG a- and b-waves. PMID:3496233

  7. Human disc degeneration is associated with increased MMP 7 expression.

    PubMed

    Le Maitre, C L; Freemont, A J; Hoyland, J A

    2006-01-01

    During intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration, normal matrix synthesis decreases and degradation of disc matrix increases. A number of proteases that are increased during disc degeneration are thought to be involved in its pathogenesis. Matrix metalloproteinase 7 (MMP 7) (Matrilysin, PUMP-1) is known to cleave the major matrix molecules found within the IVD, i.e., the proteoglycan aggrecan and collagen type II. To date, however, it is not known how its expression changes with degeneration or its exact location. We investigated the localization of MMP 7 in human, histologically graded, nondegenerate, degenerated and prolapsed discs to ascertain whether MMP 7 is up-regulated during disc degeneration. Samples of human IVD tissue were fixed in neutral buffered formalin, embedded in paraffin, and sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin to score the degree of morphological degeneration. Immunohistochemistry was performed to localize MMP 7 in 41 human IVDs with varying degrees of degeneration. We found that the chondrocyte-like cells of the nucleus pulposus and inner annulus fibrosus were MMP 7 immunopositive; little immunopositivity was observed in the outer annulus. Nondegenerate discs showed few immunopositive cells. A significant increase in the proportion of MMP 7 immunopositive cells was seen in the nucleus pulposus of discs classified as showing intermediate levels of degeneration and a further increase was seen in discs with severe degeneration. Prolapsed discs showed more MMP 7 immunopositive cells compared to nondegenerated discs, but fewer than those seen in cases of severe degeneration. PMID:17129995

  8. The progressive nature of Wallerian degeneration in wild-type and slow Wallerian degeneration (WldS) nerves

    PubMed Central

    Beirowski, Bogdan; Adalbert, Robert; Wagner, Diana; Grumme, Daniela S; Addicks, Klaus; Ribchester, Richard R; Coleman, Michael P

    2005-01-01

    Background The progressive nature of Wallerian degeneration has long been controversial. Conflicting reports that distal stumps of injured axons degenerate anterogradely, retrogradely, or simultaneously are based on statistical observations at discontinuous locations within the nerve, without observing any single axon at two distant points. As axon degeneration is asynchronous, there are clear advantages to longitudinal studies of individual degenerating axons. We recently validated the study of Wallerian degeneration using yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) in a small, representative population of axons, which greatly improves longitudinal imaging. Here, we apply this method to study the progressive nature of Wallerian degeneration in both wild-type and slow Wallerian degeneration (WldS) mutant mice. Results In wild-type nerves, we directly observed partially fragmented axons (average 5.3%) among a majority of fully intact or degenerated axons 3742 h after transection and 4044 h after crush injury. Axons exist in this state only transiently, probably for less than one hour. Surprisingly, axons degenerated anterogradely after transection but retrogradely after a crush, but in both cases a sharp boundary separated intact and fragmented regions of individual axons, indicating that Wallerian degeneration progresses as a wave sequentially affecting adjacent regions of the axon. In contrast, most or all WldS axons were partially fragmented 1525 days after nerve lesion, WldS axons degenerated anterogradely independent of lesion type, and signs of degeneration increased gradually along the nerve instead of abruptly. Furthermore, the first signs of degeneration were short constrictions, not complete breaks. Conclusions We conclude that Wallerian degeneration progresses rapidly along individual wild-type axons after a heterogeneous latent phase. The speed of progression and its ability to travel in either direction challenges earlier models in which clearance of trophic or regulatory factors by axonal transport triggers degeneration. WldS axons, once they finally degenerate, do so by a fundamentally different mechanism, indicated by differences in the rate, direction and abruptness of progression, and by different early morphological signs of degeneration. These observations suggest that WldS axons undergo a slow anterograde decay as axonal components are gradually depleted, and do not simply follow the degeneration pathway of wild-type axons at a slower rate. PMID:15686598

  9. Wallerian degeneration: the innate-immune response to traumatic nerve injury

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Traumatic injury to peripheral nerves results in the loss of neural functions. Recovery by regeneration depends on the cellular and molecular events of Wallerian degeneration that injury induces distal to the lesion site, the domain through which severed axons regenerate back to their target tissues. Innate-immunity is central to Wallerian degeneration since innate-immune cells, functions and molecules that are produced by immune and non-immune cells are involved. The innate-immune response helps to turn the peripheral nerve tissue into an environment that supports regeneration by removing inhibitory myelin and by upregulating neurotrophic properties. The characteristics of an efficient innate-immune response are rapid onset and conclusion, and the orchestrated interplay between Schwann cells, fibroblasts, macrophages, endothelial cells, and molecules they produce. Wallerian degeneration serves as a prelude for successful repair when these requirements are met. In contrast, functional recovery is poor when injury fails to produce the efficient innate-immune response of Wallerian degeneration. PMID:21878125

  10. Treatment of age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Bylsma, Guy W; Guymer, Robyn H

    2005-09-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the greatest cause of legal blindness in the western world. Established treatments include argon laser photocoagulation of extrafoveal choroidal neovascularisation (CNV) and photodynamic therapy of selected sub-foveal CNV. Newer approaches are targeting the angiogenic pathway in CNV development. Currently, other treatment modalities, such as radiotherapy and transpupillary thermotherapy do not have a clear role to play. Surgical options are experimental and only available in some centres for selected patients. Prevention of AMD remains elusive. Dietary supplements may have a role, while statins and prophylactic laser photocoagulation of drusen remain experimental. This paper explains the principles behind these approaches. PMID:16255691

  11. Asymptotic behavior of degenerate logistic equations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arrieta, Jos M.; Pardo, Rosa; Rodrguez-Bernal, Anbal

    2015-12-01

    We analyze the asymptotic behavior of positive solutions of parabolic equations with a class of degenerate logistic nonlinearities of the type ?u - n (x)u?. An important characteristic of this work is that the region where the logistic term n (?) vanishes, that is K0 = { x : n (x) = 0 }, may be non-smooth. We analyze conditions on ?, ?, n (?) and K0 guaranteeing that the solution starting at a positive initial condition remains bounded or blows up as time goes to infinity. The asymptotic behavior may not be the same in different parts of K0.

  12. Cerebellar Degeneration Associated with Sjgren's Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Mi Jung; Lee, Myoung Chong; Lee, Jae-Hong

    2012-01-01

    Background Neurologic manifestations of primary Sjgren's syndrome (PSS) have been reported to vary from sensory polyneuropathy to encephalopathy or psychiatric problems. However, marked cerebellar degeneration associated with PSS has rarely been reported. Case Report We describe a patient with Sjgren's syndrome who exhibited rapidly progressive cerebellar ataxia, nystagmus, cognitive decline, and psychiatric problems. Brain magnetic resonance imaging revealed marked atrophy of the cerebellum, and 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose positron-emission tomography demonstrated glucose hypometabolism of the cerebellum. Conclusions Our PSS patient exhibited a progressive course of cerebellar syndrome, as evidenced by cerebellar atrophy on serial brain images. PMID:22787501

  13. Spin susceptibility of degenerate quark matter

    SciTech Connect

    Pal, Kausik; Dutt-Mazumder, Abhee K.

    2009-11-15

    The expression for spin susceptibility {chi} of degenerate quark matter is derived with corrections up to O(g{sup 4}ln g{sup 2}). It is shown that, at low density, {chi}{sup -1} changes sign and turns negative, indicating a ferromagnetic phase transition. To this order, we also calculate sound velocity c{sub 1} and incompressibility K with arbitrary spin polarization. The estimated values of c{sub 1} and K show that the equation of state of the polarized matter is stiffer than that of unpolarized matter. Finally, we determine the finite temperature corrections to the exchange energy and derive corresponding results for the spin susceptibility.

  14. The non-directional pattern of axonal changes in Wallerian degeneration: a computer-aided morphometric analysis.

    PubMed Central

    Malbouisson, A M; Ghabriel, M N; Allt, G

    1984-01-01

    Wallerian degeneration was investigated to determine whether axonal changes occur progressively in a somatofugal or somatopetal direction or simultaneously along the length of the axon. Microtubule density was used as a measure of the extent of axonal degeneration and was assessed by a computer-aided analysis of electron micrographs. The left sural nerves of ten rats were crushed and 30 hours later axonal areas and axonal microtubule numbers were recorded from a large sample of axons at two sites 1 cm and 3 cm distal to the crush. The same recordings were made from the right unoperated nerve at two comparable sites. Statistical analysis of all the data provided no evidence for a somatofugal or reverse direction of degeneration. It is concluded therefore that in Wallerian degeneration axonal changes, as indicated by microtubule dissolution, occur simultaneously along the length of the axon. It is proposed that to interpret the conflicting published data on the direction of fibre degeneration, Schwann cell changes (e.g. myelin ovoid formation) and axonal changes (e.g. microtubule dissolution) should be considered independently since they have different aetiological mechanisms which may account for the differing experimental results reported. Images Fig. 1 Figs. 7-8 Figs. 9-10 PMID:6469853

  15. Stanniocalcin-1 rescued photoreceptor degeneration in two rat models of inherited retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Roddy, Gavin W; Rosa, Robert H; Oh, Joo Youn; Ylostalo, Joni H; Bartosh, Thomas J; Choi, Hosoon; Lee, Ryang Hwa; Yasumura, Douglas; Ahern, Kelly; Nielsen, Gregory; Matthes, Michael T; LaVail, Matthew M; Prockop, Darwin J

    2012-04-01

    Oxidative stress and photoreceptor apoptosis are prominent features of many forms of retinal degeneration (RD) for which there are currently no effective therapies. We previously observed that mesenchymal stem/stromal cells reduce apoptosis by being activated to secrete stanniocalcin-1 (STC-1), a multifunctional protein that reduces oxidative stress by upregulating mitochondrial uncoupling protein-2 (UCP-2). Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that intravitreal injection of STC-1 can rescue photoreceptors. We first tested STC-1 in the rhodopsin transgenic rat characterized by rapid photoreceptor loss. Intravitreal STC-1 decreased the loss of photoreceptor nuclei and transcripts and resulted in measurable retinal function when none is otherwise present in this rapid degeneration. We then tested STC-1 in the Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) rat characterized by a slower photoreceptor degeneration. Intravitreal STC-1 reduced the number of pyknotic nuclei in photoreceptors, delayed the loss of photoreceptor transcripts, and improved function of rod photoreceptors. Additionally, STC-1 upregulated UCP-2 and decreased levels of two protein adducts generated by reactive oxygen species (ROS). Microarrays from the two models demonstrated that STC-1 upregulated expression of a similar profile of genes for retinal development and function. The results suggested that intravitreal STC-1 is a promising therapy for various forms of RD including retinitis pigmentosa and atrophic age-related macular degeneration (AMD). PMID:22294148

  16. Family-Specific Degenerate Primer Design: A Tool to Design Consensus Degenerated Oligonucleotides

    PubMed Central

    Goñi, Sandra Elizabeth; Lozano, Mario Enrique

    2013-01-01

    Designing degenerate PCR primers for templates of unknown nucleotide sequence may be a very difficult task. In this paper, we present a new method to design degenerate primers, implemented in family-specific degenerate primer design (FAS-DPD) computer software, for which the starting point is a multiple alignment of related amino acids or nucleotide sequences. To assess their efficiency, four different genome collections were used, covering a wide range of genomic lengths: Arenavirus (10 × 104 nucleotides), Baculovirus (0.9 × 105 to 1.8 × 105 bp), Lactobacillus sp. (1 × 106 to 2 × 106 bp), and Pseudomonas sp. (4 × 106 to 7 × 106 bp). In each case, FAS-DPD designed primers were tested computationally to measure specificity. Designed primers for Arenavirus and Baculovirus were tested experimentally. The method presented here is useful for designing degenerate primers on collections of related protein sequences, allowing detection of new family members. PMID:23533783

  17. Congenital Head Nodding and Nystagmus with Cerebrocerebellar Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalyanaraman, K.; And Others

    1973-01-01

    Reported are three case histories of children with congenital head nodding and nystagmus (rhytmic oscillation of the eyeballs) associated with brain degeneration and motor and mental retardation. (DB)

  18. Progressive retinal degeneration in ranch mink.

    PubMed

    Hadlow, W J

    1984-01-01

    Retinal degeneration was prevalent in a large group of sapphire and pastel mink (Mustela vison) kept for studies on slow viral diseases. Nearly 78% of those two to eight years old were affected. The retinopathy was equally common in both sexes but more frequent in sapphires (85%) than in pastels (63%), and it was severe more often in sapphires than in pastels. By light microscopy, the primary change appeared to be progressive degeneration of fully developed photoreceptors, beginning in their outer segments. In many mink, including some younger ones, the rods and cones and outer nuclear layer had disappeared from all but the far periphery of the fundus. The inner retinal layers were spared until late in the disease, and the pigment epithelium remained essentially unchanged. The cause of the retinopathy was not established. It may represent an abiotrophy in which the structural integrity of the photoreceptors began to wane in many mink after they reached two years of age. Apart from reducing visual acuity, the retinopathy has implications for the photoperiodic control of fur growth and reproduction in this highly light-sensitive carnivore. PMID:6710807

  19. Wallerian degeneration in ICAM-1-deficient mice.

    PubMed Central

    Vougioukas, V. I.; Roeske, S.; Michel, U.; Brck, W.

    1998-01-01

    Wallerian degeneration of the peripheral nervous system was studied in ICAM-1-deficient mice and compared with the phenomena observed in C57BL wild-type animals. There was a decrease in myelin density in both mice strains 4 and 6 days after transection of the sciatic nerve. The degenerating nerves were invaded by Mac-1-, LFA-1-, and F4/80-positive macrophages; significantly lower numbers of macrophages were present in ICAM-1-deficient nerves. Myelin loss decreased after nerve transection with a more prominent loss in ICAM-1-deficient animals. Schwann cells revealed a much higher myelin load in these animals when compared with wild-type nerves, and there was an increased proliferation of endoneurial cells in ICAM-1-deficient mice. These data indicate that ICAM-1 is involved in macrophage recruitment to injured peripheral nerves as well as in the proliferative and phagocytic response of Schwann cells after peripheral nerve transection. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 PMID:9422541

  20. Degenerate parametric oscillation in quantum membrane optomechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benito, Mónica; Sánchez Muñoz, Carlos; Navarrete-Benlloch, Carlos

    2016-02-01

    The promise of innovative applications has triggered the development of many modern technologies capable of exploiting quantum effects. But in addition to future applications, such quantum technologies have already provided us with the possibility of accessing quantum-mechanical scenarios that seemed unreachable just a few decades ago. With this spirit, in this work we show that modern optomechanical setups are mature enough to implement one of the most elusive models in the field of open system dynamics: degenerate parametric oscillation. Introduced in the eighties and motivated by its alleged implementability in nonlinear optical resonators, it rapidly became a paradigm for the study of dissipative phase transitions whose corresponding spontaneously broken symmetry is discrete. However, it was found that the intrinsic multimode nature of optical cavities makes it impossible to experimentally study the model all the way through its phase transition. In contrast, here we show that this long-awaited model can be implemented in the motion of a mechanical object dispersively coupled to the light contained in a cavity, when the latter is properly driven with multichromatic laser light. We focus on membranes as the mechanical element, showing that the main signatures of the degenerate parametric oscillation model can be studied in state-of-the-art setups, thus opening the possibility of analyzing spontaneous symmetry breaking and enhanced metrology in one of the cleanest dissipative phase transitions. In addition, the ideas put forward in this work would allow for the dissipative preparation of squeezed mechanical states.

  1. Thermodynamic functions of degenerate magnetized electron gas

    SciTech Connect

    Skobelev, V. V.

    2011-11-15

    The Fermi energy, pressure, internal energy, entropy, and heat capacity of completely degenerate relativistic electron gas are calculated by numerical methods. It is shown that the maximum admissible magnetic field on the order of 10{sup 9} G in white dwarfs increases the pressure by a factor of 1.06 in the central region, where the electron concentration is {approx}10{sup 33} cm{sup -3}, while the equilibrium radius increases by approximately a factor of 1.03, which obviously cannot be observed experimentally. A magnetic field of {approx}10{sup 8} G or lower has no effect on the pressure and other thermodynamic functions. It is also shown that the contribution of degenerate electron gas to the total pressure in neutron stars is negligible compared to that of neutron gas even in magnetic fields with a maximum induction {approx}10{sup 17} G possible in neutron stars. The neutron beta-decay forbiddeness conditions in a superstrong magnetic field are formulated. It is assumed that small neutron stars have such magnetic fields and that pulsars with small periods are the most probable objects that can have super-strong magnetic fields.

  2. The formation of primordial degenerate protostars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lenzuni, Paolo; Chernoff, David F.; Salpeter, Edwin E.

    1992-07-01

    Low rates of accretion (less than 10 exp -10 solar masses/yr) of metal-free gas onto a small (less than 0.15 solar masses) protostellar core allow efficient cooling of the settling gas and yield very degenerate interior conditions. The steady-state, spherically symmetric flow near such a protostar is modeled. The calculations include a shock which stands above the stellar surface, a cooling region in which bremsstrahlung is the dominant radiative mechanism, an absorption layer just above the protostellar surface in which ionizing radiation is reprocessed, and a settling region in which the newly accreted material cools and joins the hydrostatic atmosphere of the protostar. In addition, there exists an external H II-like region in the preshock region. The transition between degenerate and nondegenerate conditions is a strong function of both mass and accretion rate. Opacity in the outer layers is primarily due to collision-induced absorption. An extensive set of solutions is provided in which a given interior flux is carried by convection at large depths. Some astrophysical implications of accretion at the rates considered are briefly discussed.

  3. MMPs and ADAMTSs in intervertebral disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wen-Jun; Yu, Xiao-Hua; Wang, Cheng; Yang, Wei; He, Wen-Si; Zhang, Shu-Jun; Yan, Yi-Guo; Zhang, Jian

    2015-08-25

    Intervertebral disc degeneration (IDD) is the most common diagnosis in patients with low back pain, a leading cause of musculoskeletal disability worldwide. The major components of extracellular matrix (ECM) within the discs are type II collagen (Col II) and aggrecan. Excessive destruction of ECM, especially loss of Col II and aggrecan, plays a critical role in promoting the occurrence and development of IDD. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and a disintegrin and metalloprotease with thrombospondin motifs (ADAMTSs) are primary enzymes that degrade collagens and aggrecan. There is a large and growing body of evidence that many members of MMPs and ADAMTSs are highly expressed in degenerative IVD tissue and cells, and are closely involved in ECM breakdown and the process of disc degeneration. In contrast, targeting these enzymes has shown promise for promoting ECM repair and mitigating disc regeneration. In the current review, after a brief description regarding the biology of MMPs and ADAMTSs, we mainly focus on their expression profiles, roles and therapeutic potential in IDD. A greater understanding of the catabolic pathways involved in IDD will help to develop potential prophylactic or regenerative biological treatment for degenerative disc disease in the future. PMID:26162271

  4. SIRT3 Reverses Aging-associated Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Katharine; Xie, Stephanie; Qiu, Xiaolei; Mohrin, Mary; Shin, Jiyung; Liu, Yufei; Zhang, Dan; Scadden, David T.; Chen, Danica

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Sirtuins extend lifespan across species, although the role in nematodes and fruitflies is controversial. Whether sirtuins can reverse aging-associated degeneration is unknown. Tissue-specific stem cells persist throughout the entire lifespan to repair and maintain tissues, but their self-renewal and differentiation potential become dysregulated with aging. We show that SIRT3, a mammalian sirtuin that regulates the global acetylation landscape of mitochondrial proteins and reduces oxidative stress, is highly enriched in hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) where it regulates a stress response. SIRT3 is dispensable for HSC maintenance and tissue homeostasis at a young age under homeostatic conditions, but is essential under stress or at an old age. Importantly, SIRT3 is suppressed with aging, and SIRT3 upregulation in aged HSCs improves their regenerative capacity. Our study illuminates the plasticity of mitochondrial homeostasis controlling stem cell and tissue maintenance during the aging process, and shows that aging-associated degeneration can be reversed by a sirtuin. PMID:23375372

  5. Retinoid receptors trigger neuritogenesis in retinal degenerations.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yanhua; Jones, Bryan W; Liu, Aihua; Tucker, James F; Rapp, Kevin; Luo, Ling; Baehr, Wolfgang; Bernstein, Paul S; Watt, Carl B; Yang, Jia-Hui; Shaw, Marguerite V; Marc, Robert E

    2012-01-01

    Anomalous neuritogenesis is a hallmark of neurodegenerative disorders, including retinal degenerations, epilepsy, and Alzheimer's disease. The neuritogenesis processes result in a partial reinnervation, new circuitry, and functional changes within the deafferented retina and brain regions. Using the light-induced retinal degeneration (LIRD) mouse model, which provides a unique platform for exploring the mechanisms underlying neuritogenesis, we found that retinoid X receptors (RXRs) control neuritogenesis. LIRD rapidly triggered retinal neuron neuritogenesis and up-regulated several key elements of retinoic acid (RA) signaling, including retinoid X receptors (RXRs). Exogenous RA initiated neuritogenesis in normal adult retinas and primary retinal cultures and exacerbated it in LIRD retinas. However, LIRD-induced neuritogenesis was partly attenuated in retinol dehydrogenase knockout (Rdh12(-/-)) mice and by aldehyde dehydrogenase inhibitors. We further found that LIRD rapidly increased the expression of glutamate receptor 2 and β Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (βCaMKII). Pulldown assays demonstrated interaction between βCaMKII and RXRs, suggesting that CaMKII pathway regulates the activities of RXRs. RXR antagonists completely prevented and RXR agonists were more effective than RA in inducing neuritogenesis. Thus, RXRs are in the final common path and may be therapeutic targets to attenuate retinal remodeling and facilitate global intervention methods in blinding diseases and other neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:21940995

  6. Interleukin-1? Inhibition Prevents Choroidal Neovascularization and Does Not Exacerbate Photoreceptor Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lavalette, Sophie; Raoul, William; Houssier, Marianne; Camelo, Serge; Levy, Olivier; Calippe, Bertrand; Jonet, Laurent; Behar-Cohen, Francine; Chemtob, Sylvain; Guillonneau, Xavier; Combadire, Christophe; Sennlaub, Florian

    2011-01-01

    The pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-1? has been shown to promote angiogenesis. It can have a neurotoxic or neuroprotective effect. Here, we have studied the expression of IL-1? in vivo and the effect of the IL-1 receptor antagonist on choroidal neovascularization (CNV) and retinal degeneration (RD). IL-1? expression significantly increased after laser injury (real time PCR) in C57BL/6 mice, in the C57BL/6 Cx3cr1?/? model of age-related macular degeneration (enzyme-linked immunoabsorbent assay), and in albino Wistar rats and albino BALB Cx3cr1+/+ and Cx3cr1?/? mice (enzyme-linked immunoabsorbent assay) after light injury. IL-1? was localized to Ly6G-positive, Iba1-negative infiltrating neutrophils in laser-induced CNV as determined by IHC. IL-1 receptor antagonist treatment significantly inhibited CNV but did not affect Iba1-positive macrophage recruitment to the injury site. IL-1? significantly increased endothelial cell outgrowth in aortic ring assay independently of vascular endothelial growth factor, suggesting a direct effect of IL-1? on choroidal endothelial cell proliferation. Inhibition of IL-1? in light- and laser-induced RD models did not alter photoreceptor degeneration in Wistar rats, C57BL/6 mice, or RD-prone Cx3cr1?/? mice. Our results suggest that IL-1? inhibition might represent a valuable and safe alternative to inhibition of vascular endothelial growth factor in the control of CNV in the context of concomitant photoreceptor degeneration as observed in age-related macular degeneration. PMID:21514452

  7. Overexpression of Dyrk1A contributes to neurofibrillary degeneration in Down syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Fei; Liang, Zhihou; Wegiel, Jerzy; Hwang, Yu-Wen; Iqbal, Khalid; Grundke-Iqbal, Inge; Ramakrishna, Narayan; Gong, Cheng-Xin

    2008-01-01

    Adults with Down syndrome (DS) develop Alzheimer neurofibrillary degeneration in the brain, but the underlying molecular mechanism is unknown. Here, we report that the presence of an extra copy of the dual-specificity tyrosine-phosphorylated and regulated kinase 1A (Dyrk1A) gene due to trisomy 21 resulted in overexpression of Dyrk1A and elevated kinase activity in DS brain. Dyrk1A phosphorylated tau at several sites, and these sites were hyperphosphorylated in adult DS brains. Phosphorylation of tau by Dyrk1A primed its further phosphorylation by glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β). Dyrk1A-induced tau phosphorylation inhibited tau’s biological activity and promoted its self-aggregation. In Ts65Dn mouse brain, an extra copy of the Dyrk1A gene caused increased expression and activity of Dyrk1A and resulted in increased tau phosphorylation. These findings strongly suggest a novel mechanism by which the overexpression of Dyrk1A in DS brain causes neurofibrillary degeneration via hyperphosphorylating tau. Liu, F., Liang, Z., Wegiel, J., Hwang, Y.-W., Iqbal, K., Grundke-Iqbal, I., Ramakrishna, N., Gong, C.-X. Overexpression of Dyrk1A contributes to neurofibrillary degeneration in Down syndrome. PMID:18509201

  8. Functional Rescue of Retinal Degeneration-Associated Mutant RPE65 Proteins.

    PubMed

    Jin, Minghao; Li, Songhua; Hu, Jane; Jin, Heather H; Jacobson, Samuel G; Bok, Dean

    2016-01-01

    More than 100 different mutations in the RPE65 gene are associated with inherited retinal degeneration. Although some missense mutations have been shown to abolish isomerase activity of RPE65, the molecular bases leading to loss of function and retinal degeneration remain incompletely understood. Here we show that several missense mutations resulted in significant decrease in expression level of RPE65 in the human retinal pigment epithelium cells. The 26S proteasome non-ATPase regulatory subunit 13, a newly identified negative regulator of RPE65, mediated degradation of mutant RPE65s, which were misfolded and formed aggregates in the cells. Many mutations, including L22P, T101I, and L408P, were mapped on nonactive sites of RPE65. Enzyme activities of these mutant RPE65s were significantly rescued at low temperature, whereas mutant RPE65s with a distinct active site mutation could not be rescued under the same conditions. 4-phenylbutyrate (PBA) displayed a significant synergistic effect on the low temperature-mediated rescue of the mutant RPE65s. Our results suggest that a low temperature eye mask and PBA, a FDA-approved oral medicine, may provide a promising "protein repair therapy" that can enhance the efficacy of gene therapy for delaying retinal degeneration caused by RPE65 mutations. PMID:26427455

  9. Degenerate polygonal tilings in simple animal tissues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hočevar, A.; Ziherl, P.

    2009-07-01

    The salient feature of one-cell-thick epithelia is their en face view, which reveals the polygonal cross section of the close-packed prismatic cells. The physical mechanisms that shape these tissues were hitherto explored using theories based on cell proliferation, which were either entirely topological or included certain morphogenetic forces. But mitosis itself may not be instrumental in molding the tissue. We show that the structure of simple epithelia can be explained by an equilibrium model where energy-degenerate polygons in an entropy-maximizing tiling are described by a single geometric parameter encoding their inflatedness. The two types of tilings found numerically—ordered and disordered—closely reproduce the patterns observed in Drosophila, Hydra, and Xenopus and they generalize earlier theoretical results. Free of a specific cell self-energy, cell-cell interaction, and cell division kinetics, our model provides an insight into the universality of living and inanimate two-dimensional cellular structures.

  10. Subwavelength total acoustic absorption with degenerate resonators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Min; Meng, Chong; Fu, Caixing; Li, Yong; Yang, Zhiyu; Sheng, Ping

    2015-09-01

    We report the experimental realization of perfect sound absorption by sub-wavelength monopole and dipole resonators that exhibit degenerate resonant frequencies. This is achieved through the destructive interference of two resonators' transmission responses, while the matching of their averaged impedances to that of air implies no backscattering, thereby leading to total absorption. Two examples, both using decorated membrane resonators (DMRs) as the basic units, are presented. The first is a flat panel comprising a DMR and a pair of coupled DMRs, while the second one is a ventilated short tube containing a DMR in conjunction with a sidewall DMR backed by a cavity. In both examples, near perfect absorption, up to 99.7%, has been observed with the airborne wavelength up to 1.2 m, which is at least an order of magnitude larger than the composite absorber. Excellent agreement between theory and experiment is obtained.

  11. A COMPUTATIONAL MODEL OF MOTOR NEURON DEGENERATION

    PubMed Central

    Le Masson, Gwendal; Przedborski, Serge; Abbott, L.F.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY To explore the link between bioenergetics and motor neuron degeneration, we used a computational model in which detailed morphology and ion conductance are paired with intracellular ATP production and consumption. We found that reduced ATP availability increases the metabolic cost of a single action potential and disrupts K+/Na+ homeostasis, resulting in a chronic depolarization. The magnitude of the ATP shortage at which this ionic instability occurs depends on the morphology and intrinsic conductance characteristic of the neuron. If ATP shortage is confined to the distal part of the axon, the ensuing local ionic instability eventually spreads to the whole neuron and involves fasciculation-like spiking events. A shortage of ATP also causes a rise in intracellular calcium. Our modeling work supports the notion that mitochondrial dysfunction can account for salient features of the paralytic disorder amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, including motor neuron hyperexcitability, fasciculation, and differential vulnerability of motor neuron subpopulations. PMID:25088365

  12. Topological superradiance in a degenerate Fermi gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Jian-Song; Liu, Xiong-Jun; Zhang, Wei; Yi, Wei; Guo, Guang-Can; Yi's Group Team; Liu's Group Team; Zhang's Group Team

    2015-05-01

    We predict the existence of a topological superradiant state in a two-component degenerate Fermi gas in a cavity. The superradiant light generation in the transversely driven cavity mode induces a cavity-assisted spin-orbit coupling in the system and opens a bulk gap at half filling. This mechanism can simultaneously drive a topological phase transition in the system, yielding a topological superradiant state. We map out the steady-state phase diagram of the system in the presence of an effective Zeeman field, and identify a critical tetracritical point beyond which the topological and the conventional superraidiant phase boundaries separate. We propose to detect the topological phase transition based on its signatures in either the momentum distribution of the atoms or in the cavity photon occupation.

  13. Degenerate R-S perturbation theory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hirschfelder, J. O.; Certain, P. R.

    1973-01-01

    A concise, systematic procedure is given for determining the Rayleigh-Schrodinger energies and wave functions of degenerate states to arbitrarily high orders even when the degeneracies of the various states are resolved in arbitrary orders. The procedure is expressed in terms of an iterative cycle in which the energy through the (2n+1)st order is expressed in terms of the partially determined wave function through the n-th order. Both a direct and an operator derivation are given. The two approaches are equivalent and can be transcribed into each other. The direct approach deals with the wave functions (without the use of formal operators) and has the advantage that it resembles the usual treatment of nondegenerate perturbations and maintains close contact with the basic physics. In the operator approach, the wave functions are expressed in terms of infinite order operators which are determined by the successive resolution of the space of the zeroth order functions.

  14. Therapeutic interventions in parkinsonism: Corticobasal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Marsili, Luca; Suppa, Antonio; Berardelli, Alfredo; Colosimo, Carlo

    2016-01-01

    Corticobasal degeneration (CBD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder resulting from pathological accumulation of tau protein and is included in the spectrum of Atypical Parkinsonism. The typical clinical phenotype of CBD is characterized by the Corticobasal syndrome (CBS). In recent years it has become clear that the clinical picture of CBS may be caused by different pathological conditions, resulting in frequent misdiagnosis. CBD has high morbidity and poor prognosis with no effective therapies. In this review, we will discuss the symptomatic treatment, the palliative care and the disease modifying strategies currently in use. Symptomatic treatment in patients with CBD may sometimes be useful for improving motor (parkinsonism, dystonia and myoclonus) and non-motor (cognitive-behavioral) symptoms, but the effects are often unsatisfactory. In addition, non-pharmacological strategies and palliative care are useful integrating components of the multidisciplinary therapeutic approach for patients with CBD. Despite many efforts, a disease-modifying treatment is still unavailable for CBD. PMID:26382843

  15. Anterior insula degeneration in frontotemporal dementia

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    The human anterior insula is anatomically and functionally heterogeneous, containing key nodes within distributed speechlanguage and viscero-autonomic/socialemotional networks. The frontotemporal dementias selectively target these large-scale systems, leading to at least three distinct clinical syndromes. Examining these disorders, researchers have begun to dissect functions which rely on specific insular nodes and networks. In the behavioral variant of frontotemporal dementia, early-stage frontoinsular degeneration begets progressive Salience Network breakdown that leaves patients unable to model the emotional impact of their own actions or inactions. Ongoing studies seek to clarify local microcircuit- and cellular-level factors that confer selective frontoinsular vulnerability. The search for frontotemporal dementia treatments will depend on a rich understanding of insular biology and could help clarify specialized human language, social, and emotional functions. PMID:20512369

  16. Accreting degenerate dwarfs in close binary systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cordova, F. A.; Mason, K. O.

    1983-01-01

    Advances in the study of cataclysmic variables made during the past few years are reviewed. The classification of cataclysmic binaries and their dynamic properties are summarized. The hard and soft X-ray emission from these objects is discussed, and two alternative accretion geometries for producing this radiation from deep in the potential well of the degenerate dwarf are considered. The ultraviolet and optical spectrum is addressed, including disk emission and contributions from the companion star. Magnetic fields in cataclysmic variables are discussed, and the temporal behavior of these stars is addressed, including periodic modulations associated with orbital motion and rotation as well as flickering and pulsation reflecting the mass transfer process and the dynamics of matter near the surface of the accreting star. The outburst process is considered, including classical novae, recurrent novae, and dwarf novae.

  17. Retinal degeneration following lead exposure - functional aspects.

    PubMed

    Sobieniecki, Andrzej; Gutowska, Izabela; Machali?ska, Anna; Chlubek, Dariusz; Baranowska-Bosiacka, Irena

    2015-01-01

    Due to the prevalence of lead (Pb) in the environment, the neurotoxic effects on the human body have become an important clinical problem. Despite that Pb concentration in the environment decreased after banning its use in petrol, it is still a significant issue which can affect child development and vision. This paper focuses on the degeneration of the retina under exposure to lead. We present the most frequent sources of exposure to lead in the environment and the influence on vision, mechanisms leading to the apoptosis of photoreceptor cells, as well as strategies for blocking rod apoptosis. We also present Pb-induced disorders in the calcium metabolism of photoreceptor cells and Ca2+-dependent enzymes. PMID:26671916

  18. Isolation and characterization of Drosophila retinal degeneration B suppressors.

    PubMed Central

    Paetkau, D W; Elagin, V A; Sendi, L M; Hyde, D R

    1999-01-01

    The Drosophila retinal degeneration B protein (RdgB) is a novel integral membrane phosphatidylinositol transfer protein required for photoreceptor cell viability and light response. We isolated one intragenic suppressor (rdgBsu100) and four autosomal suppressors of the hypomorphic rdgBKS222 retinal degeneration phenotype. The rdgBsu100 suppressor dramatically slowed rdgBKS222's photoreceptor degeneration without significantly improving the electroretinogram (ERG) light response. One autosomal recessive suppressor [su(rdgB)69] significantly slowed rdgBKS222 retinal degeneration and restored the ERG light response near to that of the wild type. Unlike all the previously characterized rdgB suppressors, the four new autosomal suppressors do not affect the ERG light response in rdgB+ flies. Only Su(rdgB)116 exhibited a mutant phenotype in a rdgB+ background, which was smaller R1-6 rhabdomeres. We also examined the extent to which two previously identified visual transduction mutations suppressed rdgB retinal degeneration. Absence of one of the light-activated calcium channels (trpCM) slowed the onset of rdgB-dependent degeneration. However, loss of protein kinase C (inaC209), which blocks photoreceptor cell deactivation, desensitization, and light adaptation, failed to suppress rdgB degeneration under normal light conditions. This demonstrates that TRP activity, but not INAC, is required for rapid rdgB-dependent degeneration. PMID:9927463

  19. 9 CFR 311.35 - Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. 311.35 Section 311.35 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE... PARTS § 311.35 Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. (a) If muscular lesions are...

  20. 9 CFR 311.35 - Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. 311.35 Section 311.35 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE... PARTS § 311.35 Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. (a) If muscular lesions are...

  1. 9 CFR 311.35 - Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. 311.35 Section 311.35 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE... PARTS § 311.35 Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. (a) If muscular lesions are...

  2. 9 CFR 311.35 - Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. 311.35 Section 311.35 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE... PARTS § 311.35 Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. (a) If muscular lesions are...

  3. 9 CFR 311.35 - Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. 311.35 Section 311.35 Animals and Animal Products FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE... PARTS § 311.35 Muscular inflammation, degeneration, or infiltration. (a) If muscular lesions are...

  4. [Depression in Patients with Age-Related Macular Degeneration].

    PubMed

    Narváez, Yamile Reveiz; Gómez-Restrepo, Carlos

    2012-09-01

    Age-related macular degeneration is a cause for disability in the elderly since it greatly affects their quality of life and increases depression likelihood. This article discusses the negative effect depression has on patients with age-related macular degeneration and summarizes the interventions available for decreasing their depression index. PMID:26572116

  5. Crystallization and collapse in relativistically degenerate matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2013-04-01

    In this paper, it is shown that a mass density limit exists beyond which the relativistically degenerate matter would crystallize. The mass density limit, found here, is quite analogous to the mass limit predicted by Chandrasekhar for a type of compact stars called white dwarfs (MCh?1.43 Solar Mass). In this study, the old problem of white dwarf core collapse, which has been previously investigated by Chandrasekhar using hydrostatic stability criteria, is revisited in the framework of the quantum hydrodynamics model by inspection of the charge screening at atomic scales in the relativistic degeneracy plasma regime taking into account the relativistic Fermi-Dirac statistics and electron interaction features such as the quantum statistical pressure, Coulomb attraction, electron exchange-correlation, and quantum recoil effects. It is revealed that the existence of ion correlation and crystallization of matter in the relativistically degenerate plasma puts a critical mass density limit on white dwarf core region. It is shown that a white dwarf star with a core mass density beyond this critical limit can undergo the spontaneous core collapse (SCC). The SCC phenomenon, which is dominantly caused by the electron quantum recoil effect (interference and localization of the electron wave function), leads to a new exotic state of matter. In such exotic state, the relativistic electron degeneracy can lead the white dwarf crystallized core to undergo the nuclear fusion and an ultimate supernova by means of the volume reduction (due to the enhanced compressibility) and huge energy release (due to the increase in cohesive energy), under the stars huge inward gravitational pressure. Moreover, it is found that the SCC phenomenon is significantly affected by the core composition (it is more probable for heavier plasmas). The critical mass density found here is consistent with the values calculated for core density of typical white dwarf stars.

  6. Crystallization and collapse in relativistically degenerate matter

    SciTech Connect

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2013-04-15

    In this paper, it is shown that a mass density limit exists beyond which the relativistically degenerate matter would crystallize. The mass density limit, found here, is quite analogous to the mass limit predicted by Chandrasekhar for a type of compact stars called white dwarfs (M{sub Ch} Asymptotically-Equal-To 1.43 Solar Mass). In this study, the old problem of white dwarf core collapse, which has been previously investigated by Chandrasekhar using hydrostatic stability criteria, is revisited in the framework of the quantum hydrodynamics model by inspection of the charge screening at atomic scales in the relativistic degeneracy plasma regime taking into account the relativistic Fermi-Dirac statistics and electron interaction features such as the quantum statistical pressure, Coulomb attraction, electron exchange-correlation, and quantum recoil effects. It is revealed that the existence of ion correlation and crystallization of matter in the relativistically degenerate plasma puts a critical mass density limit on white dwarf core region. It is shown that a white dwarf star with a core mass density beyond this critical limit can undergo the spontaneous core collapse (SCC). The SCC phenomenon, which is dominantly caused by the electron quantum recoil effect (interference and localization of the electron wave function), leads to a new exotic state of matter. In such exotic state, the relativistic electron degeneracy can lead the white dwarf crystallized core to undergo the nuclear fusion and an ultimate supernova by means of the volume reduction (due to the enhanced compressibility) and huge energy release (due to the increase in cohesive energy), under the stars huge inward gravitational pressure. Moreover, it is found that the SCC phenomenon is significantly affected by the core composition (it is more probable for heavier plasmas). The critical mass density found here is consistent with the values calculated for core density of typical white dwarf stars.

  7. EXONIC SINE INSERTION IN STK38L CAUSES CANINE EARLY RETINAL DEGENERATION (erd)

    PubMed Central

    Goldstein, Orly; Kukekova, Anna V.; Aguirre, Gustavo D.; Acland, Gregory M.

    2010-01-01

    Fine mapping followed by candidate gene analysis of erd - a canine hereditary retinal degeneration characterized by aberrant photoreceptor development - established that the disease cosegregates with a SINE insertion in exon 4 of the canine STK38L/NDR2 gene. The mutation removes exon 4 from STK38L transcripts and is predicted to remove much of the N-terminus from the translated protein, including binding sites for S100B and Mob Proteins, part of the protein kinase domain, and a Thr-75 residue critical for autophosphorylation. Although known to have roles in neuronal cell function, the STK38L pathway has not previously been implicated in normal or abnormal photoreceptor development. Loss of STK38L function in erd provides novel potential insights into the role of the STK38L pathway in neuronal and photoreceptor cell function, and suggests that genes in this pathway need to be considered as candidate genes for hereditary retinal degenerations. PMID:20887780

  8. Anomalous skin effects in a weakly magnetized degenerate electron plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Abbas, G. Sarfraz, M.; Shah, H. A.

    2014-09-15

    Fully relativistic analysis of anomalous skin effects for parallel propagating waves in a weakly magnetized degenerate electron plasma is presented and a graphical comparison is made with the results obtained using relativistic Maxwellian distribution function [G. Abbas, M. F. Bashir, and G. Murtaza, Phys. Plasmas 18, 102115 (2011)]. It is found that the penetration depth for R- and L-waves for degenerate case is qualitatively small in comparison with the Maxwellian plasma case. The quantitative reduction due to weak magnetic field in the skin depth in R-wave for degenerate plasma is large as compared to the non-degenerate one. By ignoring the ambient magnetic field, previous results for degenerate field free case are salvaged [A. F. Alexandrov, A. S. Bogdankevich, and A. A. Rukhadze, Principles of Plasma Electrodynamics (Springer-Verlag, Berlin/Heidelberg, 1984), p. 90].

  9. Anomalous skin effects in a weakly magnetized degenerate electron plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abbas, G.; Sarfraz, M.; Shah, H. A.

    2014-09-01

    Fully relativistic analysis of anomalous skin effects for parallel propagating waves in a weakly magnetized degenerate electron plasma is presented and a graphical comparison is made with the results obtained using relativistic Maxwellian distribution function [G. Abbas, M. F. Bashir, and G. Murtaza, Phys. Plasmas 18, 102115 (2011)]. It is found that the penetration depth for R- and L-waves for degenerate case is qualitatively small in comparison with the Maxwellian plasma case. The quantitative reduction due to weak magnetic field in the skin depth in R-wave for degenerate plasma is large as compared to the non-degenerate one. By ignoring the ambient magnetic field, previous results for degenerate field free case are salvaged [A. F. Alexandrov, A. S. Bogdankevich, and A. A. Rukhadze, Principles of Plasma Electrodynamics (Springer-Verlag, Berlin/Heidelberg, 1984), p. 90].

  10. Computer assisted characterization of cervical intervertebral disc degeneration in MRI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michopoulou, S.; Boniatis, I.; Costaridou, L.; Cavouras, D.; Panagiotopoulos, E.; Panayiotakis, G.

    2009-05-01

    A texture-based pattern recognition system is proposed for the automatic characterization of cervical intervertebral disc degeneration from saggital magnetic resonance images of the spine. A case sample of 50 manually segmented ROIs, corresponding to 25 normal and 25 degenerated discs, was analyzed and textural features were generated from each disc-ROI. Student's t-test verified the existence of statistically significant differences between textural feature values generated from normal and degenerated discs. This finding is indicative of disc image texture differentiation due to the degeneration of the disc. The generated features were employed in the design of a pattern recognition system based on the Least Squares Minimum Distance classifier. The system achieved a classification accuracy of 94{%} and it may be of value to physicians for the assessment of cervical intervertebral disc degeneration in MRI.

  11. SARM1 activation triggers axon degeneration locally via NAD+ destruction

    PubMed Central

    Gerdts, Josiah; Brace, E.J.; Sasaki, Yo; DiAntonio, Aaron

    2015-01-01

    Axon degeneration is an intrinsic self-destruction program that underlies axon loss during injury and disease. Sterile alpha and TIR motif containing 1 (SARM1) protein is an essential mediator of axon degeneration. We report that SARM1 initiates a local destruction program involving rapid breakdown of NAD+ after injury. We used an engineered protease-sensitized SARM1 to demonstrate that SARM1 activity is required after axon injury to induce axon degeneration. Dimerization of the Toll-Interleukin Receptor (TIR) domain of SARM1 alone was sufficient to induce locally-mediated axon degeneration. Formation of the SARM1 TIR dimer triggered rapid breakdown of NAD+, whereas SARM1-induced axon destruction could be counteracted by increased NAD+ synthesis. SARM1-induced depletion of NAD+ may explain the potent axon protection in Wallerian Degeneration slow (Wlds) mutant mice. PMID:25908823

  12. SARM1 activation triggers axon degeneration locally via NAD? destruction.

    PubMed

    Gerdts, Josiah; Brace, E J; Sasaki, Yo; DiAntonio, Aaron; Milbrandt, Jeffrey

    2015-04-24

    Axon degeneration is an intrinsic self-destruction program that underlies axon loss during injury and disease. Sterile alpha and TIR motif-containing 1 (SARM1) protein is an essential mediator of axon degeneration. We report that SARM1 initiates a local destruction program involving rapid breakdown of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD(+)) after injury. We used an engineered protease-sensitized SARM1 to demonstrate that SARM1 activity is required after axon injury to induce axon degeneration. Dimerization of the Toll-interleukin receptor (TIR) domain of SARM1 alone was sufficient to induce locally mediated axon degeneration. Formation of the SARM1 TIR dimer triggered rapid breakdown of NAD(+), whereas SARM1-induced axon destruction could be counteracted by increased NAD(+) synthesis. SARM1-induced depletion of NAD(+) may explain the potent axon protection in Wallerian degeneration slow (Wld(s)) mutant mice. PMID:25908823

  13. Age-related macular degeneration: what do patients find on the internet?

    PubMed Central

    Rennie, Christina A; Hannan, Shabeeba; Maycock, Nick; Kang, Chee

    2007-01-01

    Objective To assess the quality of information and readability of the top internet sites for age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Design An examination of the technical information provision, quality and readability of websites found during an internet search for age-related macular degeneration. Setting Six internet search engines were used to find 26 unique sites on AMD. Main outcome measures Technical information and quality were assessed using a simple grading system. Readability was assessed using a Simple Measure Of Gobbledygook (SMOG) rating. Results Twelve organizational, seven academic and seven commercial sites were identified. The average technical scores were 82.3%, 67.9% and 65.2% for each type of site, respectively (P=0.097, one way ANOVA). The average quality scores were 62.2%, 62.6%, and 49.5% for each type of site, respectively (P=0.356, one-way ANOVA). The average SMOG ratings were 16.3, 16.1, and 16.2 for each type of site, respectively (P=0.983, one-way ANOVA). Fifteen of the sites provided details of new and emerging treatments, with seven providing a detailed discussion. Conclusions Many websites are now meeting the challenge of providing comprehensive information about AMD and its new treatments. Quality scores were disappointing, with sites needing to provide more evidence of authorship and attribution of information. The majority of sites had SMOG scores above 10, making them difficult for the average person to understand. As physicians we need to help design and direct patients to sites that provide high quality, current information. PMID:17911131

  14. Differential Light-induced Responses in Sectorial Inherited Retinal Degeneration*

    PubMed Central

    Ramon, Eva; Cordom, Arnau; Aguil, Mnica; Srinivasan, Sundaramoorthy; Dong, Xiaoyun; Moore, Anthony T.; Webster, Andrew R.; Cheetham, Michael E.; Garriga, Pere

    2014-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a group of genetically and clinically heterogeneous inherited degenerative retinopathies caused by abnormalities of photoreceptors or retinal pigment epithelium in the retina leading to progressive sight loss. Rhodopsin is the prototypical G-protein-coupled receptor located in the vertebrate retina and is responsible for dim light vision. Here, novel M39R and N55K variants were identified as causing an intriguing sector phenotype of RP in affected patients, with selective degeneration in the inferior retina. To gain insights into the molecular aspects associated with this sector RP phenotype, whose molecular mechanism remains elusive, the mutations were constructed by site-directed mutagenesis, expressed in heterologous systems, and studied by biochemical, spectroscopic, and functional assays. M39R and N55K opsins had variable degrees of chromophore regeneration when compared with WT opsin but showed no gross structural misfolding or altered trafficking. M39R showed a faster rate for transducin activation than WT rhodopsin with a faster metarhodopsinII decay, whereas N55K presented a reduced activation rate and an altered photobleaching pattern. N55K also showed an altered retinal release from the opsin binding pocket upon light exposure, affecting its optimal functional response. Our data suggest that these sector RP mutations cause different protein phenotypes that may be related to their different clinical progression. Overall, these findings illuminate the molecular mechanisms of sector RP associated with rhodopsin mutations. PMID:25359768

  15. Identification of genes associated with disc degeneration using bioinformatics.

    PubMed

    Ji, S-C; Han, N; Liu, Y; Li, G; Sun, Z; Li, Z

    2015-07-01

    Intervertebral disc degeneration is a common orthopedic disease that has been recognized as the major cause of low back pain. About 80% of the population is affected by this disease. We explored molecular mechanisms of disc degeneration and identified the genes associated with the disease. The transcription profile of GSE34095 was downloaded from Gene Expression Omnibus database with three degenerative disc samples and three healthy disc samples. Gene ontology and pathway enrichment analysis were performed. We constructed a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network and a transcription factor (TF) target network. Differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in normal and disc degeneration samples were identified including 243 up-regulated genes and 351 down-regulated genes. Meanwhile, seven Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways were obtained by mapping the 594 DEGs to the KEGG and we found that the calcium signaling pathway was the most significant for developing disc degeneration. The pathways interaction network analysis showed that the adherens junction pathway interacted with other six pathways. In addition, the top five genes, FYN, PRKCD, YWHAB, YWHAZ and AR, with a high degree of interaction of 7, 4, 4, 4 and 4, respectively, were related to the disc degeneration in the PPI network. Furthermore, transcription factors including TFAP2A, E2F4, SP3 and AR had the potential to regulate disc degeneration through the mitogen-activated protein kinase, vascular endothelial growth factor and p53 pathways. The genes and pathways that we identified may be involved in disc degeneration. PMID:25801299

  16. Mass limits for dark clusters of degenerate fermions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Membrado, M.; Pacheco, A. F.

    2013-03-01

    We calculate the range of possible masses for dark spheres of bound fully degenerate fermions as a function of the fermion mass. The cosmological constant is included in our calculations. We deduce that the minimum fermion mass that is able to give rise to degenerate fermion clusters is ~0.02 g-1/4 eV, where g is the spin degeneracy parameter. We show that degenerate fermions of mc2 ? (15-30) g-1/4 eV can build bound degenerate dark haloes that could reproduce the values of the rotation velocities of galaxies. The masses and radii derived for these degenerate dark haloes of typical galaxies, without considering any cosmological information, agree with the Jeans masses and radii of a cosmological background of ~(20-30) g-1/4 eV degenerate fermions at redshift z ? 50. However, degenerate fermion objects of 1015 M? composed of these particles are too small to constitute the dark halo of galaxy clusters. We also derive degeneracy conditions for hot and cold dark matter fermions.

  17. Interventions for asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration for preventing retinal detachment

    PubMed Central

    Wilkinson, Charles P

    2016-01-01

    Background Asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration are visible lesions that are risk factors for later retinal detachment. Retinal detachments occur when fluid in the vitreous cavity passes through tears or holes in the retina and separates the retina from the underlying retinal pigment epithelium. Creation of an adhesion surrounding retinal breaks and lattice degeneration, with laser photocoagulation or cryotherapy, has been recommended as an effective means of preventing retinal detachment. This therapy is of value in the management of retinal tears associated with the symptoms of flashes and floaters and persistent vitreous traction upon the retina in the region of the retinal break, because such symptomatic retinal tears are associated with a high rate of progression to retinal detachment. Retinal tears and holes unassociated with acute symptoms and lattice degeneration are significantly less likely to be the sites of retinal breaks that are responsible for later retinal detachment. Nevertheless, treatment of these problems is frequently recommended, in spite of the fact that the effectiveness of this therapy is unproven. Objectives The purpose of this review was to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions for asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration. Search methods We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Group Trials Register) (The Cochrane Library 2012, Issue 1), MEDLINE (January 1950 to January 2012), EMBASE (January 1980 to January 2012), the metaRegister of Controlled Trials (mRCT) (www.controlled-trials.com), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov) and the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). There were no date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. The electronic databases were last searched on 28 January 2012. Textbooks regarding retinal detachment and the reference lists of relevant reports were reviewed for additional study reports. Experts in the field were contacted for details of other published and unpublished studies. Selection criteria This review was designed to include randomized controlled trials in which one treatment for asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration was compared to another treatment or to no treatment. Data collection and analysis Initially one author assessed the search results and collected relevant studies. Since no studies met the inclusion criteria, no studies were assessed for methodological quality. No data were extracted and no meta-analysis could be performed. Main results No trials were found that met the inclusion criteria for this review. Authors conclusions No conclusions could be reached about the effectiveness of surgical interventions to prevent retinal detachment in eyes with asymptomatic retinal breaks and/or lattice degeneration. Some current recommendations for treatment, based upon a consensus of expert opinion, are contradicted by the best available evidence. PMID:22419286

  18. Weakly dissipative solitons in dense relativistic-degenerate plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmad, Saeed; Ata-ur-Rahman; Khan, S. A.

    2015-07-01

    We investigate the features of weakly nonlinear waves in a collisional dense plasma consisting of ultra-relativistic degenerate electrons and non-relativistic degenerate ions. In weak dissipation limit, the dynamics of low frequency nonlinear ion (solitary) wave is described by solving a damped Korteweg-deVries equation. The analytical and numerical analysis shows the existence of weakly dissipative solitons evolving with time. The characteristics of soliton evolution with plasma number density and slow ion-neutral collision rate are discussed with some detail. The relevance of the study with degenerate plasmas in ultra-dense astrophysical objects, particularly white dwarf stars is also pointed out.

  19. Degenerate Fermi gas perturbations at standard background cosmology

    SciTech Connect

    Bernardini, A.E.; Perico, E.L.D. E-mail: elduarte@ifi.unicamp.br

    2011-01-01

    The hypothesis of a tiny fraction of the cosmic inventory evolving cosmologically as a degenerate Fermi gas test fluid at some dominant cosmological background is investigated. Our analytical results allow for performing preliminary computations to the evolution of perturbations for relativistic and non-relativistic test fluids. The density fluctuation, ?, the fluid velocity divergence, ?, and an explicit expression for the dynamics of the shear stress, ?, are obtained for a degenerate Fermi gas in the background regime of radiation. Extensions to the dominance of matter and to the ?CDM cosmological background are also investigated and lessons concerning the formation of large structures of degenerate Fermi gas are depicted.

  20. Unfolding degenerate grazing dynamics in impact actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Xiaopeng; Dankowicz, Harry

    2006-02-01

    In this paper, a selected analysis of the dynamics in an example impact microactuator is performed through a combination of numerical simulations and local analysis. Here, emphasis is placed on investigating the system response in the vicinity of the so-called grazing trajectories, i.e. motions that include zero-relative-velocity contact of the actuator parts, using the concept of discontinuity mappings that account for the effects of low-relative-velocity impacts and brief episodes of stick-slip motion. The analysis highlights the existence of isolated co-dimension-two grazing bifurcation points and the way in which these organize the behaviour of the impacting dynamics. In particular, it is shown how higher-order truncations of local maps of the near-grazing dynamics predict and enable the computation of global bifurcation curves emanating from such degenerate bifurcation points, thereby unfolding the near-grazing dynamics. Although the numerical results presented here are specific for the chosen model of an electrically driven and previously experimentally realized impact microactuator, the methodology generalizes naturally to arbitrary systems with impacts. Moreover, the qualitative nature of the near-grazing dynamics is expected to generalize to systems with similar nonlinearities.

  1. Producing Quantum Degenerate Gases of Strontium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camargo, Francisco; Ding, Roger; Whalen, Joseph; Woehl, Germano; Dunning, Barry; Killian, Thomas

    2015-05-01

    We present our progress towards producing quantum degenerate gases of all four stable isotopes of strontium (84Sr, 86Sr, 87Sr, 88Sr) and isotopic mixtures. We characterize the performance of our broad-line (461 nm, 30.5 MHz), narrow-line (689 nm, 7.5 kHz) magneto-optical traps, and examine evaporative cooling for all four isotopes. The new apparatus will be used to create and study tunable long-range interactions by dressing with strongly-interacting Rydberg states. The ability to trap the four different isotopes allows a measure of control of these interactions through access to a range of attractive and repulsive interactions. Simultaneous trapping of different isotopes provides opportunities for novel laser cooling schemes for studying Bose-Bose and Bose-Fermi mixtures. Research supported by the AFOSR under grant no. FA9550-12-1-0267, the NSF under grants nos. 1301773 and 1205946, and the Robert A. Welch Foundation under grant no. C-0734.

  2. Physics of Age Related Macular Degeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Family, Fereydoon

    2009-11-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness beyond the age of 50 years. The most common pathogenic mechanism that leads to AMD is choroidal neovascularization (CNV). CNV is produced by accumulation of residual material caused by aging of retinal pigment epithelium cells (RPE). The RPE is a phagocytic system that is essential for renewal of photoreceptors (rods and cones). With time, incompletely degraded membrane material builds up in the form of lipofuscin. Lipofuscin is made of free-radical-damaged protein and fat, which forms not only in AMD, but also Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease. The study of lipofuscin formation and growth is important, because of their association with cellular aging. In this talk I will discuss a model of non-equilibrium cluster growth that we have developed for studying the formation and growth of lipofuscin in AMD [K.I. Mazzitello, C.M. Arizmendi, Fereydoon Family, H. E. Grossniklaus, Physical Review E (2009)]. I will also present an overview of our theoretical and computational efforts in modeling some other aspects of the physics of AMD, including CNV and the breakdown of Bruch's membrane [Ongoing collaboration with Abbas Shirinifard and James A. Glazier, Biocomplexity Institute and Department of Physics, Indiana University, Y. Jiang, Los Alamos, and Hans E. Grossniklaus, Department of Ophthalmology, Emory University].

  3. Statistical physics of age related macular degeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Family, Fereydoon; Mazzitello, K. I.; Arizmendi, C. M.; Grossniklaus, H. E.

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness beyond the age of 50 years. The most common pathogenic mechanism that leads to AMD is choroidal neovascularization (CNV). CNV is produced by accumulation of residual material caused by aging of retinal pigment epithelium cells (RPE). The RPE is a phagocytic system that is essential for renewal of photoreceptors (rods and cones). With time, incompletely degraded membrane material builds up in the form of lipofuscin. Lipofuscin is made of free-radical-damaged protein and fat, which forms not only in AMD, but also Alzheimer disease and Parkinson disease. The study of lipofuscin formation and growth is important, because of their association with cellular aging. We introduce a model of non-equilibrium cluster growth and aggregation that we have developed for studying the formation and growth of lipofuscin in the aging RPE. Our results agree with a linear growth of the number of lipofuscin granules with age. We apply the dynamic scaling approach to our model and find excellent data collapse for the cluster size distribution. An unusual feature of our model is that while small particles are removed from the RPE the larger ones become fixed and grow by aggregation.

  4. Degenerate crystals from colloidal dimers under confinement.

    PubMed

    Muangnapoh, Kullachate; Avendao, Carlos; Escobedo, Fernando A; Liddell Watson, Chekesha M

    2014-12-28

    Colloidal aperiodic phases (i.e., entropy stabilized degenerate crystals, DCs) are realized via self-assembly of hollow fluorescent silica dimers under wedge-cell confinement. The dimer building blocks approximate two tangent spheres and their arrangements are studied via laser scanning confocal microscopy. In the DCs, the individual lobes tile a lattice and five distinct DC arrangements with square, triangular or rectangular layer symmetry are determined as a function of confinement height. Moreover, Monte Carlo simulations are used to construct the phase diagram for DCs up to two layer confinements and to analyze structural order in detail. Just as for spheres, the DC structural transitions under confinement are attributed to the ability or frustration to accommodate an integral number of particle layers between hard walls. Unlike spheres, dimers can also experience transitions involving changes in orientation. DCs are among the unconventional structures (e.g., semi-regular tilings, quasicrystals, plastic crystals) expected to enhance the properties of photonic solids. PMID:25366128

  5. Memory in patients with cerebellar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Appollonio, I M; Grafman, J; Schwartz, V; Massaquoi, S; Hallett, M

    1993-08-01

    Eleven patients with relatively selective cerebellar degeneration and 11 normal control subjects underwent a comprehensive neurologic and neuropsychological examination. The neuropsychological tests assessed general intellectual ability, different aspects of memory (effortful, automatic, and implicit memory processes), speed of information processing, and verbal fluency (using both category and letter fluency tasks). The results indicated that cerebellar patients were significantly impaired only on tasks requiring the use of executive functions, such as the initiation/perseveration subtest of the Mattis Dementia Rating Scale or the fluency tests, and on memory measures requiring greater processing effort. They performed normally on automatic and implicit measures of memory. Performance on the effortful memory and executive measures was not associated with neurologic variables or mood state. After controlling for the initiation/perseveration deficit, the effortful memory scores of the cerebellar patients were no longer different from those of controls. The present study suggests that memory in patients with relatively pure cerebellar dysfunction is only partially compromised and that the impairment is secondary to a deficit in executive functions. PMID:8351008

  6. [Criteria for the diagnosis of corticobasal degeneration].

    PubMed

    Shimohata, Takayoshi; Aiba, Ikuko; Nishizawa, Masatoyo

    2015-04-01

    Corticobasal degeneration (CBD) is a distinct neurodegenerative disorder characterized by widespread neuronal and glial accumulation of abnormally phosphorylated tau protein. Patients with CBD often present with corticobasal syndrome (CBS) showing impairment of the motor system, cognition, or both. Several studies demonstrate that they may also present with progressive supranuclear palsy syndrome (PSPS), aphasia, Alzheimer disease-like dementia, or behavioral changes, suggesting that CBS is merely one of the presenting phenotypes of CBD. Accurate diagnosis is important for future clinical trials using drugs aimed at modifying the underlying tau pathology. Although previous CBD diagnostic criteria reflected only CBS, Armstrong et al. proposed new diagnostic criteria for CBD in 2013 (Armstrong's criteria). The new criteria include 4 CBD phenotypes, including CBS, frontal behavioral-spatial syndrome (FBS), nonfluent/agrammatic variant of primary progressive aphasia (naPPA), and PSPS. These phenotypes were combined to create 2 sets of criteria: specific clinical research criteria for probable CBD (cr-CBD) and broader criteria for possible CBD that are more inclusive but have a higher probability of detecting other tau-based pathologies (p-CBD). However, two recent studies revealed that the sensitivity and specificity of these criteria were insufficient. Further refinement of the criteria is needed via biomarker research with prospective study designs. (Received August 19, 2014; Accepted December 26, 2014: Published April 1, 2015). PMID:25846600

  7. Flavour identification in frontotemporal lobar degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Omar, Rohani; Mahoney, Colin J; Buckley, Aisling H; Warren, Jason D

    2013-01-01

    Background Deficits of flavour processing may be clinically important in frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). Objective To examine  flavour processing in FTLD. Methods We studied flavour identification prospectively in 25 patients with FTLD (12 with behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD), eight with semantic variant primary progressive aphasia (svPPA), five with non-fluent variant primary progressive aphasia (nfvPPA)) and 17 healthy control subjects, using a new test based on cross-modal matching of flavours to words and pictures. All subjects completed a general neuropsychological assessment, and odour identification was also assessed using a modified University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test. Brain MRI volumes from the patient cohort were analysed using voxel-based morphometry to identify regional grey matter associations of flavour identification. Results Relative to the healthy control group, the bvFTD and svPPA subgroups showed significant (p<0.05) deficits of flavour identification and all three FTLD subgroups showed deficits of odour identification. Flavour identification performance did not differ significantly between the FTLD syndromic subgroups. Flavour identification performance in the combined FTLD cohort was significantly (p<0.05 after multiple comparisons correction) associated with grey matter volume in the left entorhinal cortex, hippocampus, parahippocampal gyrus and temporal pole. Conclusions Certain FTLD syndromes are associated with impaired flavour identification and this is underpinned by grey matter atrophy in an anteromedial temporal lobe network. These findings may have implications for our understanding of abnormal eating behaviour in these diseases. PMID:23138765

  8. Animal models of age related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Pennesi, Mark E.; Neuringer, Martha; Courtney, Robert J.

    2013-01-01

    Age related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss of those over the age of 65 in the industrialized world. The prevalence and need to develop effective treatments for AMD has lead to the development of multiple animal models. AMD is a complex and heterogeneous disease that involves the interaction of both genetic and environmental factors with the unique anatomy of the human macula. Models in mice, rats, rabbits, pigs and non-human primates have recreated many of the histological features of AMD and provided much insight into the underlying pathological mechanisms of this disease. In spite of the large number of models developed, no one model yet recapitulates all of the features of human AMD. However, these models have helped reveal the roles of chronic oxidative damage, inflammation and immune dysregulation, and lipid metabolism in the development of AMD. Models for induced choroidal neovascularization have served as the backbone for testing new therapies. This article will review the diversity of animal models that exist for AMD as well as their strengths and limitations. PMID:22705444

  9. Animal models of age related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Pennesi, Mark E; Neuringer, Martha; Courtney, Robert J

    2012-08-01

    Age related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss of those over the age of 65 in the industrialized world. The prevalence and need to develop effective treatments for AMD has lead to the development of multiple animal models. AMD is a complex and heterogeneous disease that involves the interaction of both genetic and environmental factors with the unique anatomy of the human macula. Models in mice, rats, rabbits, pigs and non-human primates have recreated many of the histological features of AMD and provided much insight into the underlying pathological mechanisms of this disease. In spite of the large number of models developed, no one model yet recapitulates all of the features of human AMD. However, these models have helped reveal the roles of chronic oxidative damage, inflammation and immune dysregulation, and lipid metabolism in the development of AMD. Models for induced choroidal neovascularization have served as the backbone for testing new therapies. This article will review the diversity of animal models that exist for AMD as well as their strengths and limitations. PMID:22705444

  10. Nonneovascular Age-Related Macular Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Michels, Stephan; Garhfer, Gerhard

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of several genetic variants associated with an increased risk for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) has led to a completely new understanding of AMD. In addition to the known modifiable risk factors, genetic risk factors may also help to assess the risk to progress to nonneovascular AMD. Recently published primary studies have indicated that genetic risk analysis may be valuable in the selection of the currently available antioxidant therapy. So far, the best evidence for preventing progression to nonneovascular AMD comes from the Age-Related Eye Disease Studies (AREDS) I and II. These studies indicate that high doses of antioxidants can reduce the risk of progression to the advanced form of the disease. However, the recent evaluation of the addition of either lutein and zeaxanthin, or x03C9;-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, or both, to the established AREDS I formulation did not significantly reduce the risk of developing advanced AMD. There is clearly a large unmet medical need for new therapeutic options for nonneovascular AMD. The modulation of the complement cascade is - despite initially disappointing outcomes obtained with blocking complement factor 5 - currently the most promising approach to the treatment of nonneovascular AMD. PMID:26502209

  11. Neovascular Age-Related Macular Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Shao, Jack; Choudhary, Maria M; Schachat, Andrew P

    2016-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of severe vision loss in individuals over the age of 50 years. Choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is the hallmark of 'wet' or 'exudative' AMD, and is responsible for approximately 90% of cases of severe vision loss due to AMD. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a key component in the development and progression of wet AMD. Since the approval of ranibizumab in 2006, VEGF inhibitors have rapidly altered the treatment and standard of care for wet AMD. Ranibizumab, bevacizumab, and aflibercept are now the most widely used anti-VEGF agents for the treatment of wet AMD. This chapter discusses the pharmacologic properties, pharmacokinetics, safety, and efficacy of these medications, as well as revisits landmark clinical trials that establish these drugs as gold standards in care. While these medications have greatly and positively altered the way we treat AMD, there are still many economic and therapeutic limitations with our current therapy regimens. There continue to be advancements and innovations in exploring alternative and new treatment modalities, as well as combining existing treatment options to improve efficacy, and reduce cost and patient burden. PMID:26501146

  12. Bmp6 Regulates Retinal Iron Homeostasis and Has Altered Expression in Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Hadziahmetovic, Majda; Song, Ying; Wolkow, Natalie; Iacovelli, Jared; Kautz, Leon; Roth, Marie-Paule; Dunaief, Joshua L.

    2011-01-01

    Iron-induced oxidative stress causes hereditary macular degeneration in patients with aceruloplasminemia. Similarly, retinal iron accumulation in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) may exacerbate the disease. The cause of retinal iron accumulation in AMD is poorly understood. Given that bone morphogenetic protein 6 (Bmp6) is a major regulator of systemic iron, we examined the role of Bmp6 in retinal iron regulation and in AMD pathogenesis. Bmp6 was detected in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), a major site of pathology in AMD. In cultured RPE cells, Bmp6 was down-regulated by oxidative stress and up-regulated by iron. Intraocular Bmp6 protein injection in mice up-regulated retinal hepcidin, an iron regulatory hormone, and altered retinal labile iron levels. Bmp6?/? mice had age-dependent retinal iron accumulation and degeneration. Postmortem RPE from patients with early AMD exhibited decreased Bmp6 levels. Because oxidative stress is associated with AMD pathogenesis and down-regulates Bmp6 in cultured RPE cells, the diminished Bmp6 levels observed in RPE cells in early AMD may contribute to iron build-up in AMD. This may in turn propagate a vicious cycle of oxidative stress and iron accumulation, exacerbating AMD and other diseases with hereditary or acquired iron excess. PMID:21703414

  13. [Multi-infarct disorder presenting as corticobasal degeneration (DCB): vascular pseudo-corticobasal degeneration?].

    PubMed

    Kreisler, A; Mastain, B; Tison, F; Fnelon, G; Deste, A

    2007-12-01

    We report on five patients with a clinical presentation of corticobasal degeneration (CBD), including gradually progressive, asymmetric, L-DOPA-resistant parkinsonism associated variously with apraxia, focal action myoclonus, focal dystonia, cortical sensory loss and alien limb phenomenon. Some patients also presented an atypical CBD clinical history or signs - notably sudden onset. The disease was however not suggestive of another diagnosis. Magnetic resonance imaging of the brain revealed extensive vascular lesions. Only five similar cases have been published to our knowledge. Although we cannot exclude underlying CBD pathology, our cases illustrate the fact that multi-infarct pathology can masquerade as CBD or alter the clinical phenotype of the disease. PMID:18355466

  14. Genetics Home Reference: Age-related macular degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... form. The dry form is much more common, accounting for 85 to 90 percent of all cases ... Where can I find information about diagnosis or management of age-related macular degeneration? These resources address ...

  15. Intervertebral disc degeneration: evidence for two distinct phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Michael A; Dolan, Patricia

    2012-01-01

    We review the evidence that there are two types of disc degeneration. Endplate-driven disc degeneration involves endplate defects and inwards collapse of the annulus, has a high heritability, mostly affects discs in the upper lumbar and thoracic spine, often starts to develop before age 30 years, usually leads to moderate back pain, and is associated with compressive injuries such as a fall on the buttocks. Annulus-driven disc degeneration involves a radial fissure and/or a disc prolapse, has a low heritability, mostly affects discs in the lower lumbar spine, develops progressively after age 30 years, usually leads to severe back pain and sciatica, and is associated with repetitive bending and lifting. The structural defects which initiate the two processes both act to decompress the disc nucleus, making it less likely that the other defect could occur subsequently, and in this sense the two disc degeneration phenotypes can be viewed as distinct. PMID:22881295

  16. Degenerate higher derivative theories beyond Horndeski: evading the Ostrogradski instability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langlois, David; Noui, Karim

    2016-02-01

    Theories with higher order time derivatives generically suffer from ghost-like instabilities, known as Ostrogradski instabilities. This fate can be avoided by considering ``degenerate'' Lagrangians, whose kinetic matrix cannot be inverted, thus leading to constraints between canonical variables and a reduced number of physical degrees of freedom. In this work, we derive in a systematic way the degeneracy conditions for scalar-tensor theories that depend quadratically on second order derivatives of a scalar field. We thus obtain a classification of all degenerate theories within this class of scalar-tensor theories. The quartic Horndeski Lagrangian and its extension beyond Horndeski belong to these degenerate cases. We also identify new families of scalar-tensor theories with the property that they are degenerate despite the nondegeneracy of the purely scalar part of their Lagrangian.

  17. Many-Body Green Function of Degenerate Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Brouder, Christian; Panati, Gianluca; Stoltz, Gabriel

    2009-12-04

    A rigorous nonperturbative adiabatic approximation of the evolution operator in the many-body physics of degenerate systems is derived. This approximation is used to solve the long-standing problem of the choice of the initial states of H{sub 0} leading to eigenstates of H{sub 0}+V for degenerate systems. These initial states are eigenstates of P{sub 0}VP{sub 0}, where P{sub 0} is the projection onto a degenerate eigenspace of H{sub 0}. This result is used to give the proper definition of the Green function, the statistical Green function and the nonequilibrium Green function of degenerate systems. The convergence of these Green functions is established.

  18. Meromorphic differentials with imaginary periods on degenerating hyperelliptic curves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertola, M.; Tovbis, A.

    2015-03-01

    We provide a direct and explicit proof that imaginary (real) normalized differentials of the second kind with prescribed polar part do not develop additional singularities as the underlying hyperelliptic Riemann surface degenerates in an arbitrary way.

  19. Degenerate states in optical rotation and time-reversal invariance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiu, Ying-Nan

    1985-10-01

    The consequence of time-reversal symmetry in a general second-order optical process between degenerate initial and final states is elucidated. The principle is applied to the pseudoscalar natural-optical-rotation operator (RL.ML), which involves the interference of an electric-multipole (RL) transition and a magnetic-multipole (ML) transition. In addition to deriving point-group selection rules, time-reversal effects on matrix elements between degenerate states of a chiral versus an achiral molecule are compared and contrasted. Other non-time-reversal-degenerate states in chiral versus achiral molecules (D3 versus C3v and D4 versus D2d) are also compared. The analogy to the Jahn-Teller effect, which also involves (albeit first-order vibronic) matrix elements over degenerate states, is mentioned, especially with regard to the formal ``splitting'' of the degenerate levels by the pseudoscalar optical-rotation operator. A comprehensive search among the point groups for degenerate-state self-products that will give rise to the pseudoscalar function is conducted. Detailed results for the coupling of (degenerate) irreducible representations for important point groups (and their subgroups) are worked out for Td (T), O, D6d (D6, D3, C6v, C3v, C6, C3, D2d), and D4d. The couplings to give dipolar (L=1), quadrupolar (L=2), and octopolar (L=3) pseudoscalars are shown explicitly. Attention is called to the differences in the transformation of a magnetic-multipole operator and an electric-multipole operator, even though they both belong to the same irreducible representation. The resulting differences in coupling coefficients for degenerate states are given to help determine nonvanishing optical-rotation matrix elements. A summary and a discussion of the conservation of parity and time symmetry in optical rotation are given.

  20. Single-degenerate Type Ia Supernovae Are Preferentially Overluminous

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Robert; Jumper, Kevin

    2015-06-01

    Recent observational and theoretical progress has favored merging and helium-accreting sub-Chandrasekhar mass white dwarfs (WDs) in the double-degenerate and the double-detonation channels, respectively, as the most promising progenitors of normal Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). Thus the fate of rapidly accreting Chandrasekhar mass WDs in the single-degenerate channel remains more mysterious then ever. In this paper, we clarify the nature of ignition in Chandrasekhar-mass single-degenerate SNe Ia by analytically deriving the existence of a characteristic length scale which establishes a transition from central ignitions to buoyancy-driven ignitions. Using this criterion, combined with data from three-dimensional simulations of convection and ignition, we demonstrate that the overwhelming majority of ignition events within Chandrasekhar-mass WDs in the single-degenerate channel are buoyancy-driven, and consequently lack a vigorous deflagration phase. We thus infer that single-degenerate SNe Ia are generally expected to lead to overluminous 1991T-like SNe Ia events. We establish that the rates predicted from both the population of supersoft X-ray sources (SSSs) and binary population synthesis models of the single-degenerate channel are broadly consistent with the observed rates of overluminous SNe Ia, and suggest that the population of SSSs are the dominant stellar progenitors of SNe 1991T-like events. We further demonstrate that the single-degenerate channel contribution to the normal and failed 2002cx-like rates is not likely to exceed 1% of the total SNe Ia rate. We conclude with a range of observational tests of overluminous SNe Ia which will either support or strongly constrain the single-degenerate scenario.

  1. Simulation of biological therapies for degenerated intervertebral discs.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Qiaoqiao; Gao, Xin; Temple, H Thomas; Brown, Mark D; Gu, Weiyong

    2016-04-01

    The efficacy of biological therapies on intervertebral disc repair was quantitatively studied using a three-dimensional finite element model based on a cell-activity coupled multiphasic mixture theory. In this model, cell metabolism and matrix synthesis and degradation were considered. Three types of biological therapies-increasing the cell density (Case I), increasing the glycosaminoglycan (GAG) synthesis rate (Case II), and decreasing the GAG degradation rate (Case III)-to the nucleus pulposus (NP) of each of two degenerated discs [one mildly degenerated (e.g., 80% viable cells in the NP) and one severely degenerated (e.g., 30% viable cells in the NP)] were simulated. Degenerated discs without treatment were also simulated as a control. The cell number needed, nutrition level demanded, time required for the repair, and the long-term outcomes of these therapies were analyzed. For Case I, the repair process was predicted to be dependent on the cell density implanted and the nutrition level at disc boundaries. With sufficient nutrition supply, this method was predicted to be effective for treating both mildly and severely degenerated discs. For Case II, the therapy was predicted to be effective for repairing the mildly degenerated disc, but not for the severely degenerated disc. Similar results were predicted for Case III. No change in cell density for Cases II and III were predicted under normal nutrition level. This study provides a quantitative guide for choosing proper strategies of biological therapies for different degenerated discs. © 2015 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 34:699-708, 2016. PMID:26425965

  2. Electromagnetic solitons in degenerate relativistic electron-positron plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berezhiani, V. I.; Shatashvili, N. L.; Tsintsadze, N. L.

    2015-06-01

    The existence of soliton-like electromagnetic (EM) distributions in a fully degenerate electron-positron plasma is studied applying relativistic hydrodynamic and Maxwell equations. For a circularly polarized wave it is found that the soliton solutions exist both in relativistic as well as nonrelativistic degenerate plasmas. Plasma density in the region of soliton pulse localization is reduced considerably. The possibility of plasma cavitation is also shown.

  3. Solitary waves in an ultrarelativistic degenerate dense plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Mamun, A. A.; Shukla, P. K.

    2010-10-15

    Solitary waves in an ultrarelativistic degenerate dense plasma have been investigated by the reductive perturbation method. The modified Korteweg-de Vries equation has been derived and its numerical solutions have been analyzed to identify the basic features of spherical electrostatic solitary structures that may form in such a degenerate dense plasma. The implications of our results in compact astrophysical objects, particularly in white dwarfs, have been briefly discussed.

  4. Autophagy-dependent rhodopsin degradation prevents retinal degeneration in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Midorikawa, Ryosuke; Yamamoto-Hino, Miki; Awano, Wakae; Hinohara, Yoshimi; Suzuki, Emiko; Ueda, Ryu; Goto, Satoshi

    2010-08-11

    Recent studies have demonstrated protective roles for autophagy in various neurodegenerative disorders, including the polyglutamine diseases; however, the role of autophagy in retinal degeneration has remained unclear. Accumulation of activated rhodopsin in some Drosophila mutants leads to retinal degeneration, and although it is known that activated rhodopsin is degraded in endosomal pathways in normal photoreceptor cells, the contribution of autophagy to rhodopsin regulation has remained elusive. This study reveals that activated rhodopsin is degraded by autophagy in collaboration with endosomal pathways to prevent retinal degeneration. Light-dependent retinal degeneration in the Drosophila visual system is caused by the knockdown or mutation of autophagy-essential components, such as autophagy-related protein 7 and 8 (atg-7/atg-8), or genes essential for PE (phosphatidylethanolamine) biogenesis and autophagosome formation, including Phosphatidylserine decarboxylase (Psd) and CDP-ethanolamine:diacylglycerol ethanolaminephosphotransferase (Ept). The knockdown of atg-7/8 or Psd/Ept produced an increase in the amount of rhodopsin localized to Rab7-positive late endosomes. This rhodopsin accumulation, followed by retinal degeneration, was suppressed by overexpression of Rab7, which accelerated the endosomal degradation pathway. These results indicate a degree of cross talk between the autophagic and endosomal/lysosomal pathways. Importantly, a reduction in rhodopsin levels rescued Psd knockdown-induced retinal degeneration. Additionally, the Psd knockdown-induced retinal degeneration phenotype was enhanced by Ppt1 inactivation, which causes infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis, implying that autophagy plays a significant role in its pathogenesis. Collectively, the current data reveal that autophagy suppresses light-dependent retinal degeneration in collaboration with the endosomal degradation pathway and that rhodopsin is a key substrate for autophagic degradation in this context. PMID:20702701

  5. Perceptual learning in patients with macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Plank, Tina; Rosengarth, Katharina; Schmalhofer, Carolin; Goldhacker, Markus; Brandl-Rhle, Sabine; Greenlee, Mark W

    2014-01-01

    Patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or hereditary macular dystrophies (JMD) rely on an efficient use of their peripheral visual field. We trained eight AMD and five JMD patients to perform a texture-discrimination task (TDT) at their preferred retinal locus (PRL) used for fixation. Six training sessions of approximately one hour duration were conducted over a period of approximately 3 weeks. Before, during and after training twelve patients and twelve age-matched controls (the data from two controls had to be discarded later) took part in three functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) sessions to assess training-related changes in the BOLD response in early visual cortex. Patients benefited from the training measurements as indexed by significant decrease (p = 0.001) in the stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) between the presentation of the texture target on background and the visual mask, and in a significant location specific effect of the PRL with respect to hit rate (p = 0.014). The following trends were observed: (i) improvement in Vernier acuity for an eccentric line-bisection task; (ii) positive correlation between the development of BOLD signals in early visual cortex and initial fixation stability (r = 0.531); (iii) positive correlation between the increase in task performance and initial fixation stability (r = 0.730). The first two trends were non-significant, whereas the third trend was significant at p = 0.014, Bonferroni corrected. Consequently, our exploratory study suggests that training on the TDT can enhance eccentric vision in patients with central vision loss. This enhancement is accompanied by a modest alteration in the BOLD response in early visual cortex. PMID:25368597

  6. Perceptual learning in patients with macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Plank, Tina; Rosengarth, Katharina; Schmalhofer, Carolin; Goldhacker, Markus; Brandl-Rhle, Sabine; Greenlee, Mark W.

    2014-01-01

    Patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or hereditary macular dystrophies (JMD) rely on an efficient use of their peripheral visual field. We trained eight AMD and five JMD patients to perform a texture-discrimination task (TDT) at their preferred retinal locus (PRL) used for fixation. Six training sessions of approximately one hour duration were conducted over a period of approximately 3 weeks. Before, during and after training twelve patients and twelve age-matched controls (the data from two controls had to be discarded later) took part in three functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) sessions to assess training-related changes in the BOLD response in early visual cortex. Patients benefited from the training measurements as indexed by significant decrease (p = 0.001) in the stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) between the presentation of the texture target on background and the visual mask, and in a significant location specific effect of the PRL with respect to hit rate (p = 0.014). The following trends were observed: (i) improvement in Vernier acuity for an eccentric line-bisection task; (ii) positive correlation between the development of BOLD signals in early visual cortex and initial fixation stability (r = 0.531); (iii) positive correlation between the increase in task performance and initial fixation stability (r = 0.730). The first two trends were non-significant, whereas the third trend was significant at p = 0.014, Bonferroni corrected. Consequently, our exploratory study suggests that training on the TDT can enhance eccentric vision in patients with central vision loss. This enhancement is accompanied by a modest alteration in the BOLD response in early visual cortex. PMID:25368597

  7. Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration and MicroRNAs

    PubMed Central

    Piscopo, Paola; Albani, Diego; Castellano, Anna E.; Forloni, Gianluigi; Confaloni, Annamaria

    2016-01-01

    Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) includes a spectrum of disorders characterized by changes of personality and social behavior and, often, a gradual and progressive language dysfunction. In the last years, several efforts have been fulfilled in identifying both genetic mutations and pathological proteins associated with FTLD. The molecular bases undergoing the onset and progression of the disease remain still unknown. Recent literature prompts an involvement of RNA metabolism in FTLD, particularly microRNAs (miRNAs). Dysregulation of miRNAs in several disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases, and increasing importance of circulating miRNAs in different pathologies has suggested to implement the study of their possible application as biological markers and new therapeutic targets; moreover, miRNA-based therapy is becoming a powerful tool to deepen the function of a gene, the mechanism of a disease, and validate therapeutic targets. Regarding FTLD, different studies showed that miRNAs are playing an important role. For example, several reports have evaluated miRNA regulation of the progranulin gene suggesting that it is under their control, as described for miR-29b, miR-107, and miR-659. More recently, it has been demonstrated that TMEM106B gene, which protein is elevated in FTLD-TDP brains, is repressed by miR-132/212 cluster; this post-transcriptional mechanism increases intracellular levels of progranulin, affecting its pathways. These findings if confirmed could suggest that these microRNAs have a role as potential targets for some related-FTLD genes. In this review, we focus on the emerging roles of the miRNAs in the pathogenesis of FTLD. PMID:26903860

  8. Distinct optical properties of relativistically degenerate matter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2014-06-01

    In this paper, we use the collisional quantum magnetohydrodynamic (CQMHD) model to derive the transverse dielectric function of a relativistically degenerate electron fluid and investigate various optical parameters, such as the complex refractive index, the reflection and absorption coefficients, the skin-depth and optical conductivity. In this model we take into accounts effects of many parameters such as the atomic-number of the constituent ions, the electron exchange, electron diffraction effect and the electron-ion collisions. Study of the optical parameters in the solid-density, the warm-dense-matter, the big-planetary core, and the compact star number-density regimes reveals that there are distinct differences between optical characteristics of the latter and the former cases due to the fundamental effects of the relativistic degeneracy and other quantum mechanisms. It is found that in the relativistic degeneracy plasma regime, such as found in white-dwarfs and neutron star crusts, matter possess a much sharper and well-defined step-like reflection edge beyond the x-ray electromagnetic spectrum, including some part of gamma-ray frequencies. It is also remarked that the magnetic field intensity only significantly affects the plasma reflectivity in the lower number-density regime, rather than the high density limit. Current investigation confirms the profound effect of relativistic degeneracy on optical characteristics of matter and can provide an important plasma diagnostic tool for studying the physical processes within the wide scope of quantum plasma regimes be it the solid-density, inertial-confined, or astrophysical compact stars.

  9. [Nutrition and age-related macular degeneration].

    PubMed

    Desmettre, T; Lecerf, J-M; Souied, E-H

    2004-11-01

    The nutritional factors involved in the pathogenesis of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) include antioxidants or antioxidant cofactors: vitamins A, C, etc.; zinc, etc.; anti-free-radicals such as beta-carotene and carotenoids, including lutein and zeaxanthin; micronutrients protecting from blue light such as lutein and zeaxanthin; and finally components of the membranes of the photoreceptors docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These nutritional factors are closely related to environmental risk factors such as smoking and chronic blue light exposure. Although the experimental and epidemiological data are concordant and coherent, the protective role of these micronutrients is not clearly established, mainly because there are very few clinical studies. However, a first observation study showed positive effects at stages 3 and 4 of AMD. Report #8 of the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) provides important results for preventing complications of AMD (secondary prevention), and the cocktail of micronutrients proposed even encourages complementary studies on, for example, lutein and zeaxanthin instead of beta-carotene. The outcome of observation studies including a supplementation of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) of the omega-3 family (DHA) is also important, as it addresses primary prevention of the disease. A supplementation of omega-3 PUFAs could be proposed to certain subjects at risk for AMD for primary prevention and a supplementation with an antioxidant cocktail of micronutrients could be proposed to patients presenting AMD at stages 3 or 4 or to subjects with a nutritional imbalance. These conceivable supplementations are compatible with simple dietary advice. The supplements currently proposed could be optimized to increase their advantages. New research and new clinical studies are necessary to definitively validate these formulations in order to grant them an authentic drug status. PMID:15602406

  10. Distinct optical properties of relativistically degenerate matter

    SciTech Connect

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2014-06-15

    In this paper, we use the collisional quantum magnetohydrodynamic (CQMHD) model to derive the transverse dielectric function of a relativistically degenerate electron fluid and investigate various optical parameters, such as the complex refractive index, the reflection and absorption coefficients, the skin-depth and optical conductivity. In this model we take into accounts effects of many parameters such as the atomic-number of the constituent ions, the electron exchange, electron diffraction effect and the electron-ion collisions. Study of the optical parameters in the solid-density, the warm-dense-matter, the big-planetary core, and the compact star number-density regimes reveals that there are distinct differences between optical characteristics of the latter and the former cases due to the fundamental effects of the relativistic degeneracy and other quantum mechanisms. It is found that in the relativistic degeneracy plasma regime, such as found in white-dwarfs and neutron star crusts, matter possess a much sharper and well-defined step-like reflection edge beyond the x-ray electromagnetic spectrum, including some part of gamma-ray frequencies. It is also remarked that the magnetic field intensity only significantly affects the plasma reflectivity in the lower number-density regime, rather than the high density limit. Current investigation confirms the profound effect of relativistic degeneracy on optical characteristics of matter and can provide an important plasma diagnostic tool for studying the physical processes within the wide scope of quantum plasma regimes be it the solid-density, inertial-confined, or astrophysical compact stars.

  11. Disruption in dopaminergic innervation during photoreceptor degeneration.

    PubMed

    Ivanova, Elena; Yee, Christopher W; Sagdullaev, Botir T

    2016-04-15

    Dopaminergic amacrine cells (DACs) release dopamine in response to light-driven synaptic inputs, and are critical to retinal light adaptation. Retinal degeneration (RD) compromises the light responsiveness of the retina and, subsequently, dopamine metabolism is impaired. As RD progresses, retinal neurons exhibit aberrant activity, driven by AII amacrine cells, a primary target of the retinal dopaminergic network. Surprisingly, DACs are an exception to this physiological change; DACs exhibit rhythmic activity in healthy retina, but do not burst in RD. The underlying mechanism of this divergent behavior is not known. It is also unclear whether RD leads to structural changes in DACs, impairing functional regulation of AII amacrine cells. Here we examine the anatomical details of DACs in three mouse models of human RD to determine how changes to the dopaminergic network may underlie physiological changes in RD. By using rd10, rd1, and rd1/C57 mice we were able to dissect the impacts of genetic background and the degenerative process on DAC structure in RD retina. We found that DACs density, soma size, and primary dendrite length are all significantly reduced. Using a novel adeno-associated virus-mediated technique to label AII amacrine cells in mouse retina, we observed diminished dopaminergic contacts to AII amacrine cells in RD mice. This was accompanied by changes to the components responsible for dopamine synthesis and release. Together, these data suggest that structural alterations of the retinal dopaminergic network underlie physiological changes during RD. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:1208-1221, 2016. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26356010

  12. The advantages of frontotemporal degeneration drug development (part 2 of frontotemporal degeneration: the next therapeutic frontier).

    PubMed

    Boxer, Adam L; Gold, Michael; Huey, Edward; Hu, William T; Rosen, Howard; Kramer, Joel; Gao, Fen-Biao; Burton, Edward A; Chow, Tiffany; Kao, Aimee; Leavitt, Blair R; Lamb, Bruce; Grether, Megan; Knopman, David; Cairns, Nigel J; Mackenzie, Ian R; Mitic, Laura; Roberson, Erik D; Van Kammen, Daniel; Cantillon, Marc; Zahs, Kathleen; Jackson, George; Salloway, Stephen; Morris, John; Tong, Gary; Feldman, Howard; Fillit, Howard; Dickinson, Susan; Khachaturian, Zaven S; Sutherland, Margaret; Abushakra, Susan; Lewcock, Joseph; Farese, Robert; Kenet, Robert O; Laferla, Frank; Perrin, Steve; Whitaker, Steve; Honig, Lawrence; Mesulam, Marsel M; Boeve, Brad; Grossman, Murray; Miller, Bruce L; Cummings, Jeffrey L

    2013-03-01

    Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) encompasses a spectrum of related neurodegenerative disorders with behavioral, language, and motor phenotypes for which there are currently no effective therapies. This is the second of two articles that summarize the presentations and discussions that occurred at two symposia in 2011 sponsored by the Frontotemporal Degeneration Treatment Study Group, a collaborative group of academic and industry researchers that is devoted to developing treatments for FTD. This article discusses the current status of FTD clinical research that is relevant to the conduct of clinical trials, and why FTD research may be an attractive pathway for developing therapies for neurodegenerative disorders. The clinical and molecular features of FTD, including rapid disease progression and relatively pure molecular pathology, suggest that there are advantages to developing drugs for FTD as compared with other dementias. FTD qualifies as orphan indication, providing additional advantages for drug development. Two recent sets of consensus diagnostic criteria will facilitate the identification of patients with FTD, and a variety of neuropsychological, functional, and behavioral scales have been shown to be sensitive to disease progression. Moreover, quantitative neuroimaging measurements demonstrate progressive brain atrophy in FTD at rates that may surpass Alzheimer's disease. Finally, the similarities between FTD and other neurodegenerative diseases with drug development efforts already underway suggest that FTD researchers will be able to draw on this experience to create a road map for FTD drug development. We conclude that FTD research has reached sufficient maturity to pursue clinical development of specific FTD therapies. PMID:23062850

  13. Frontotemporal degeneration, the next therapeutic frontier: molecules and animal models for frontotemporal degeneration drug development.

    PubMed

    Boxer, Adam L; Gold, Michael; Huey, Edward; Gao, Fen-Biao; Burton, Edward A; Chow, Tiffany; Kao, Aimee; Leavitt, Blair R; Lamb, Bruce; Grether, Megan; Knopman, David; Cairns, Nigel J; Mackenzie, Ian R; Mitic, Laura; Roberson, Erik D; Van Kammen, Daniel; Cantillon, Marc; Zahs, Kathleen; Salloway, Stephen; Morris, John; Tong, Gary; Feldman, Howard; Fillit, Howard; Dickinson, Susan; Khachaturian, Zaven; Sutherland, Margaret; Farese, Robert; Miller, Bruce L; Cummings, Jeffrey

    2013-03-01

    Frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) is a common cause of dementia for which there are currently no approved therapies. Over the past decade, there has been an explosion of knowledge about the biology and clinical features of FTD that has identified a number of promising therapeutic targets as well as animal models in which to develop drugs. The close association of some forms of FTD with neuropathological accumulation of tau protein or increased neuroinflammation due to progranulin protein deficiency suggests that a drug's success in treating FTD may predict efficacy in more common diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. A variety of regulatory incentives, clinical features of FTD such as rapid disease progression, and relatively pure molecular pathology suggest that there are advantages to developing drugs for FTD as compared with other more common neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. In March 2011, the Frontotemporal Degeneration Treatment Study Group sponsored a conference entitled "FTD, the Next Therapeutic Frontier," which focused on preclinical aspects of FTD drug development. The goal of the meeting was to promote collaborations between academic researchers and biotechnology and pharmaceutical researchers to accelerate the development of new treatments for FTD. Here we report the key findings from the conference, including the rationale for FTD drug development; epidemiological, genetic, and neuropathological features of FTD; FTD animal models and how best to use them; and examples of successful drug development collaborations in other neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:23043900

  14. Differential charge-transfer cross sections for systems with energetically degenerate or near-degenerate channels

    SciTech Connect

    Nguyen, H.; Bredy, R.; Camp, H.A.; DePaola, B.D.; Awata, T.

    2004-09-01

    Resolution plays a vital role in spectroscopic studies. In the usual recoil-ion momentum spectroscopy (RIMS), Q-value resolution is relied upon to distinguish between different collision channels: The better the Q-value resolution, the better one is able to resolve energetically similar channels. Although traditional COLTRIMS greatly improves Q-value resolution by cooling the target and thus greatly reducing the initial target momentum spread, the resolution of the technique is still limited by target temperature. However, with the recent development in RIMS, namely, magneto-optical trap recoil ion momentum spectroscopy (MOTRIMS) superior recoil ion momentum resolution as well as charge transfer measurements with laser excited targets have become possible. Through MOTRIMS, methods for the measurements of target excited state fraction and kinematically complete relative charge transfer cross sections have been developed, even for some systems having energetically degenerate or nearly degenerate channels. In the present work, the systems of interest having energy degeneracies or near degeneracies are Rb{sup +}, K{sup +}, and Li{sup +} colliding with trapped Rb(5l), where l=s and p.

  15. A novel retinal degeneration locus identified by linkage and comparative mapping of canine early retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Acland, G M; Ray, K; Mellersh, C S; Langston, A A; Rine, J; Ostrander, E A; Aguirre, G D

    1999-07-15

    Early retinal degeneration (erd) is an early onset progressive retinal atrophy, a hereditary canine retinal disease phenotypically similar to human retinitis pigmentosa (RP). In previous efforts to identify the erd locus, canine homologs of genes causally associated with RP in humans, such as opsin (RHO), the beta-subunit gene for cyclic GMP phosphodiesterase (PDE6B), and RDS/peripherin, were excluded. A genome-wide screen was undertaken on canine families segregating the erd disease. Analysis of over 150 canine-specific markers has localized erd to a single linkage group comprising two previously identified canine linkage groups, 20 and 26, corresponding to canine radiation hybrid groups RH.34-a and RH.40-a. Multipoint analysis places erd in the interval between marker FH2289 (distance 23.6 cM) and FH2407 (5.9 cM) with a lod score of 12.23. Although the erd linkage group has not been assigned to an identified canine chromosome, conserved synteny of this linkage group with human 12p13-q13 suggests several candidates for erd and identifies a novel retinal degeneration locus. The rapid progress now occurring in canine genetics will expedite identification of the genes and molecular mechanisms underlying the inherited traits and diseases that make the dog a unique asset for study of mammalian traits. PMID:10409424

  16. Development of Animal Models of Local Retinal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lorach, Henri; Kung, Jennifer; Beier, Corinne; Mandel, Yossi; Dalal, Roopa; Huie, Philip; Wang, Jenny; Lee, Seungjun; Sher, Alexander; Jones, Bryan William; Palanker, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Development of nongenetic animal models of local retinal degeneration is essential for studies of retinal pathologies, such as chronic retinal detachment or age-related macular degeneration. We present two different methods to induce a highly localized retinal degeneration with precise onset time, that can be applied to a broad range of species in laboratory use. Methods A 30-?m thin polymer sheet was implanted subretinally in wild-type (WT) rats. The effects of chronic retinal separation from the RPE were studied using histology and immunohistochemistry. Another approach is applicable to species with avascular retina, such as rabbits, where the photoreceptors and RPE were thermally ablated over large areas, using a high power scanning laser. Results Photoreceptors above the subretinal implant in rats degenerated over time, with 80% of the outer nuclear layer disappearing within a month, and the rest by 3 months. Similar loss was obtained by selective photocoagulation with a scanning laser. Cells in the inner nuclear layer and ganglion cell layer were preserved in both cases. However, there were signs of rewiring and decrease in the size of the bipolar cell terminals in the damaged areas. Conclusions Both methods induce highly reproducible degeneration of photoreceptors over a defined area, with complete preservation of the inner retinal neurons during the 3-month follow-up. They provide a reliable platform for studies of local retinal degeneration and development of therapeutic strategies in a wide variety of species. PMID:26207299

  17. A Novel Form of Transducin-Dependent Retinal Degeneration: Accelerated Retinal Degeneration in the Absence of Rod Transducin

    PubMed Central

    Brill, Elliott; Malanson, Katherine M.; Radu, Roxana A.; Boukharov, Natalia V.; Wang, Zhongyan; Chung, Hae-Yun; Lloyd, Marcia B.; Bok, Dean; Travis, Gabriel H.; Obin, Martin; Lem, Janis

    2008-01-01

    PURPOSE Rhodopsin mutations account for approximately 25% of human autosomal dominant retinal degenerations. However, the molecular mechanisms by which rhodopsin mutations cause photoreceptor cell death are unclear. Mutations in genes involved in the termination of rhodopsin signaling activity have been shown to cause degeneration by persistent activation of the phototransduction cascade. This study examined whether three disease-associated rhodopsin substitutions Pro347Ser, Lys296Glu, and the triple mutant Val20Gly, Pro23His, Pro27Leu (VPP) caused degeneration by persistent transducin-mediated signaling activity. METHODS Transgenic mice expressing each of the rhodopsin mutants were crossed onto a transducin α-subunit null (Trα−/−) background, and the rates of photoreceptor degeneration were compared with those of transgenic mice on a wild-type background. RESULTS Mice expressing VPP-substituted rhodopsin had the same severity of degeneration in the presence or absence of Trα. Unexpectedly, mice expressing Pro347Ser- or Lys296Glu-substituted rhodopsins exhibited faster degeneration on a Trα−/− background. To test whether the absence of α-transducin contributed to degeneration by favoring the formation of stable rhodopsin/arrestin complexes, mutant Pro347Ser+, Trα−/− mice lacking arrestin (Arr−/−) were analyzed. Rhodopsin/arrestin complexes were found not to contribute to degeneration. CONCLUSIONS The authors hypothesized that the decay of metarhodopsin to apo-opsin and free all-trans-retinaldehyde is faster with Pro347Ser-substituted rhodopsin than it is with wild-type rhodopsin. Consistent with this, the lipofuscin fluorophores A2PE, A2E, and A2PE-H2, which form from retinaldehyde, were elevated in Pro347Ser transgenic mice. PMID:18055791

  18. The birth rate of supernovae from double-degenerate and core-degenerate systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meng, X.; Yang, W.

    2012-07-01

    Context. Some recent observations of the delay-time distribution (DTD) of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) seem to uphold the double-degenerate (DD) scenario as the progenitor model of SNe Ia, but the core-degenerate (CD) scenario remains a strong competitor to the DD one. Aims: We investigate the effects of metallicity and the different treatments of common envelope (CE) on the DTD of SNe Ia by considering the DD and CD scenarios, and check the suggestion that the total mass of DD system is the main dependent variable of Phillips relation. Methods: We perform a series of Monte Carlo simulations based on a rapid binary evolution code and consider two treatments of CE evolution, i.e. ?-formalism and ?-algorithm. Results: We find that only when the ?-formalism is considered with a high CE ejection efficiency, may the shape of the DTD for DD systems be consistent with that derived observationally, i.e. a power law of ~t-1, while the value of the birth rate of SNe Ia marginally matches observations. For the ?-formalism with a low CE ejection efficiency and the ?-algorithm, neither the shape of the DTD nor the value of the birth rate can be compared with those of the observations. Metallicity may not have a significant influence on the shape of DTD, but a lower metallicity may lead to a slightly higher birth rate of SNe Ia by a factor of 2, especially for SNe Ia with long delay times. If the results for the single-degenerate (SD) channel are incorporated into those for the DTD, both the shape of DTD and its value may be closely consistent with observations for SNe Ia younger than 2.5 Gyr, and SD and DD channels provide comparable contributions to the total SNe Ia, while for SNe Ia with delay times longer than 2.5 Gyr, DD is the dominant channel and the birth rate is lower than that derived from observations by a factor up to about four. In addition, we calculate the evolutions of various integral parameters of DD systems, and do not find any one suitable to explain the correlation between the brightness of SNe Ia and its delay time. Moreover, there are three channels producing CD systems that may contribute a few SNe Ia, but the contribution of CD systems to the total SNe Ia is no more than 1%. Conclusions: There may be other channels or mechanisms contributing to SNe Ia with long delay times.

  19. Tyro3 Modulates Mertk-Associated Retinal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Vollrath, Douglas; Yasumura, Douglas; Benchorin, Gillie; Matthes, Michael T.; Feng, Wei; Nguyen, Natalie M.; Sedano, Cecilia D.; Calton, Melissa A.; LaVail, Matthew M.

    2015-01-01

    Inherited photoreceptor degenerations (IPDs) are the most genetically heterogeneous of Mendelian diseases. Many IPDs exhibit substantial phenotypic variability, but the basis is usually unknown. Mutations in MERTK cause recessive IPD phenotypes associated with the RP38 locus. We have identified a murine genetic modifier of Mertk-associated photoreceptor degeneration, the C57BL/6 (B6) allele of which acts as a suppressor. Photoreceptors degenerate rapidly in Mertk-deficient animals homozygous for the 129P2/Ola (129) modifier allele, whereas animals heterozygous for B6 and 129 modifier alleles exhibit an unusual intermixing of degenerating and preserved retinal regions, with females more severely affected than males. Mertk-deficient mice homozygous for the B6 modifier allele display degeneration only in the far periphery, even at 8 months of age, and have improved retinal function compared to animals homozygous for the 129 allele. We genetically mapped the modifier to an approximately 2-megabase critical interval that includes Tyro3, a paralog of Mertk. Tyro3 expression in the outer retina varies with modifier genotype in a manner characteristic of a cis-acting expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL), with the B6 allele conferring an approximately three-fold higher expression level. Loss of Tyro3 function accelerates the pace of photoreceptor degeneration in Mertk knockout mice, and TYRO3 protein is more abundant in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) adjacent to preserved central retinal regions of Mertk knockout mice homozygous for the B6 modifier allele. Endogenous human TYRO3 protein co-localizes with nascent photoreceptor outer segment (POS) phagosomes in a primary RPE cell culture assay, and expression of murine Tyro3 in cultured cells stimulates phagocytic ingestion of POS. Our findings demonstrate that Tyro3 gene dosage modulates Mertk-associated retinal degeneration, provide strong evidence for a direct role for TYRO3 in RPE phagocytosis, and suggest that an eQTL can modify a recessive IPD. PMID:26656104

  20. Tyro3 Modulates Mertk-Associated Retinal Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Vollrath, Douglas; Yasumura, Douglas; Benchorin, Gillie; Matthes, Michael T; Feng, Wei; Nguyen, Natalie M; Sedano, Cecilia D; Calton, Melissa A; LaVail, Matthew M

    2015-12-01

    Inherited photoreceptor degenerations (IPDs) are the most genetically heterogeneous of Mendelian diseases. Many IPDs exhibit substantial phenotypic variability, but the basis is usually unknown. Mutations in MERTK cause recessive IPD phenotypes associated with the RP38 locus. We have identified a murine genetic modifier of Mertk-associated photoreceptor degeneration, the C57BL/6 (B6) allele of which acts as a suppressor. Photoreceptors degenerate rapidly in Mertk-deficient animals homozygous for the 129P2/Ola (129) modifier allele, whereas animals heterozygous for B6 and 129 modifier alleles exhibit an unusual intermixing of degenerating and preserved retinal regions, with females more severely affected than males. Mertk-deficient mice homozygous for the B6 modifier allele display degeneration only in the far periphery, even at 8 months of age, and have improved retinal function compared to animals homozygous for the 129 allele. We genetically mapped the modifier to an approximately 2-megabase critical interval that includes Tyro3, a paralog of Mertk. Tyro3 expression in the outer retina varies with modifier genotype in a manner characteristic of a cis-acting expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL), with the B6 allele conferring an approximately three-fold higher expression level. Loss of Tyro3 function accelerates the pace of photoreceptor degeneration in Mertk knockout mice, and TYRO3 protein is more abundant in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) adjacent to preserved central retinal regions of Mertk knockout mice homozygous for the B6 modifier allele. Endogenous human TYRO3 protein co-localizes with nascent photoreceptor outer segment (POS) phagosomes in a primary RPE cell culture assay, and expression of murine Tyro3 in cultured cells stimulates phagocytic ingestion of POS. Our findings demonstrate that Tyro3 gene dosage modulates Mertk-associated retinal degeneration, provide strong evidence for a direct role for TYRO3 in RPE phagocytosis, and suggest that an eQTL can modify a recessive IPD. PMID:26656104

  1. Genetic Association Studies in Lumbar Disc Degeneration: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Eskola, Pasi J.; Lemmel, Susanna; Kjaer, Per; Solovieva, Svetlana; Mnnikk, Minna; Tommerup, Niels; Lind-Thomsen, Allan; Husgafvel-Pursiainen, Kirsti; Cheung, Kenneth M. C.; Chan, Danny

    2012-01-01

    Objective Low back pain is associated with lumbar disc degeneration, which is mainly due to genetic predisposition. The objective of this study was to perform a systematic review to evaluate genetic association studies in lumbar disc degeneration as defined on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in humans. Methods A systematic literature search was conducted in MEDLINE, MEDLINE In-Process, SCOPUS, ISI Web of Science, The Genetic Association Database and The Human Genome Epidemiology Network for information published between 19902011 addressing genes and lumbar disc degeneration. Two investigators independently identified studies to determine inclusion, after which they performed data extraction and analysis. The level of cumulative genetic association evidence was analyzed according to The HuGENet Working Group guidelines. Results Fifty-two studies were included for review. Forty-eight studies reported at least one positive association between a genetic marker and lumbar disc degeneration. The phenotype definition of lumbar disc degeneration was highly variable between the studies and replications were inconsistent. Most of the associations presented with a weak level of evidence. The level of evidence was moderate for ASPN (D-repeat), COL11A1 (rs1676486), GDF5 (rs143383), SKT (rs16924573), THBS2 (rs9406328) and MMP9 (rs17576). Conclusions Based on this first extensive systematic review on the topic, the credibility of reported genetic associations is mostly weak. Clear definition of lumbar disc degeneration phenotypes and large population-based cohorts are needed. An international consortium is needed to standardize genetic association studies in relation to disc degeneration. PMID:23185509

  2. Potential regenerative treatment strategies for intervertebral disc degeneration in dogs

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Pain due to spontaneous intervertebral disc (IVD) disease is common in dogs. In chondrodystrophic (CD) dogs, IVD disease typically develops in the cervical or thoracolumbar spine at about 3–7 years of age, whereas in non-chondrodystrophic (NCD) dogs, it usually develops in the caudal cervical or lumbosacral spine at about 6–8 years of age. IVD degeneration is characterized by changes in the biochemical composition and mechanical integrity of the IVD. In the degenerated IVD, the content of glycosaminoglycan (GAG, a proteoglycan side chain) decreases and that of denatured collagen increases. Dehydration leads to tearing of the annulus fibrosus (AF) and/or disc herniation, which is clinically characterized by pain and/or neurological signs. Current treatments (physiotherapy, anti-inflammatory/analgesic medication, surgery) for IVD disease may resolve neurological deficits and reduce pain (although in many cases insufficient), but do not lead to repair of the degenerated disc. For this reason, there is interest in new regenerative therapies that can repair the degenerated disc matrix, resulting in restoration of the biomechanical function of the IVD. CD dogs are considered a suitable animal model for human IVD degeneration because of their spontaneous IVD degeneration, and therefore studies investigating cell-, growth factor-, and/or gene therapy-based regenerative therapies with this model provide information relevant to both human and canine patients. The aim of this article is to review potential regenerative treatment strategies for canine IVD degeneration, with specific emphasis on cell-based strategies. PMID:24387033

  3. Statins for age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Gehlbach, Peter; Li, Tianjing; Hatef, Elham

    2016-01-01

    Background Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive late onset disorder of the macula affecting central vision. Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in people over 65 years in industrialized countries. Recent epidemiologic, genetic, and pathological evidence has shown AMD shares a number of risk factors with atherosclerosis, leading to the hypothesis that statins may exert protective effects in AMD. Objectives The objective of this review was to examine the effectiveness of statins compared with other treatments, no treatment, or placebo in delaying the onset and progression of AMD. Search methods We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Group Trials Register) (2014, Issue 6), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to June 2014), EMBASE (January 1980 to June 2014), Latin American and Caribbean Health Sciences Literature Database (LILACS) (January 1982 to June 2014), PubMed (January 1946 to June 2014), the metaRegister of Controlled Trials (mRCT) (www.controlled-trials.com), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov), and the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 5 June 2014. Selection criteria We included randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that compared statins with other treatments, no treatment, or placebo in participants who were either susceptible to or diagnosed as having early stages of AMD. Data collection and analysis We used standard methodological procedures expected by The Cochrane Collaboration. Two authors independently evaluated the search results against the selection criteria, abstracted data, and assessed risk of bias. We did not perform meta-analysis due to heterogeneity in the interventions and outcomes among the included studies. Main results Two RCTs with 144 total participants met the selection criteria. Both trials compared simvastatin versus placebo in older people (> 50 or 60 years) with high risk of developing AMD (drusen present on examination). The larger trial with 114 participants was conducted in Australia and used a higher dose (40 mg daily) of simvastatin for three years. Participants and study personnel in this trial were adequately masked; however, data were missing for 30% of participants at three years follow-up. The smaller trial of 30 participants was conducted in Italy and used a lower dose (20 mg) of simvastatin for three months. This trial reported insufficient details to assess the risk of bias. Neither trial reported data for change in visual acuity. Analysis of 30 participants in the smaller trial did not show a statistically significant difference between the simvastatin and placebo groups in visual acuity values at three months of treatment (decimal visual acuity 0.21 ± 0.56 in simvastatin group and 0.19 ± 0.40 in placebo group) or 45 days after the completion of treatment (decimal visual acuity 0.20 ± 0.50 in simvastatin group and 0.19 ± 0.48 in placebo group). The lack of a difference in visual acuity was not explained by lens or retina status, which remained unchanged during and after the treatment period for both groups. Preliminary analyses of 42 participants who had completed 12 months follow-up in the larger trial did not show a statistically significant difference between simvastatin and the placebo groups for visual acuity, drusen score, or visual function (effect estimates and confidence intervals were not available). Complete data for these outcomes at three years follow-up were not reported. At three years, the effect of simvastatin in slowing progression of AMD compared with placebo was uncertain (odds ratio 0.51, 95% confidence interval 0.23 to 1.09). One trial did not report adverse outcomes. The second trial reported no difference between groups in terms of adverse events such as death, muscle aches, and acute hepatitis. Authors’ conclusions Evidence from currently available RCTs is insufficient to conclude that statins have a role in preventing or delaying the onset or progression of AMD. PMID:25675254

  4. Transplantation and Stem Cell Therapy for Cerebellar Degenerations.

    PubMed

    Cendelin, Jan

    2016-02-01

    Stem cell-based and regenerative therapy may become a hopeful treatment for neurodegenerative diseases including hereditary cerebellar degenerations. Neurotransplantation therapy mainly aims to substitute lost cells, but potential effects might include various mechanisms including nonspecific trophic effects and stimulation of endogenous regenerative processes and neural plasticity. Nevertheless, currently, there remain serious limitations. There is a wide spectrum of human hereditary cerebellar degenerations as well as numerous cerebellar mutant mouse strains that serve as models for the development of effective therapy. By now, transplantation has been shown to ameliorate cerebellar function, e.g. in Purkinje cell degeneration mice, Lurcher mutant mice and mouse models of spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 and type 2 and Niemann-Pick disease type C. Despite the lack of direct comparative studies, it appears that there might be differences in graft development and functioning between various types of cerebellar degeneration. Investigation of the relation of graft development to specific morphological, microvascular or biochemical features of the diseased host tissue in various cerebellar degenerations may help to identify factors determining the fate of grafted cells and potential of their functional integration. PMID:26155762

  5. Rapid Y degeneration and dosage compensation in plant sex chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Papadopulos, Alexander S T; Chester, Michael; Ridout, Kate; Filatov, Dmitry A

    2015-10-20

    The nonrecombining regions of animal Y chromosomes are known to undergo genetic degeneration, but previous work has failed to reveal large-scale gene degeneration on plant Y chromosomes. Here, we uncover rapid and extensive degeneration of Y-linked genes in a plant species, Silene latifolia, that evolved sex chromosomes de novo in the last 10 million years. Previous transcriptome-based studies of this species missed unexpressed, degenerate Y-linked genes. To identify sex-linked genes, regardless of their expression, we sequenced male and female genomes of S. latifolia and integrated the genomic contigs with a high-density genetic map. This revealed that 45% of Y-linked genes are not expressed, and 23% are interrupted by premature stop codons. This contrasts with X-linked genes, in which only 1.3% of genes contained stop codons and 4.3% of genes were not expressed in males. Loss of functional Y-linked genes is partly compensated for by gene-specific up-regulation of X-linked genes. Our results demonstrate that the rate of genetic degeneration of Y-linked genes in S. latifolia is as fast as in animals, and that the evolutionary trajectories of sex chromosomes are similar in the two kingdoms. PMID:26438872

  6. Rapid Y degeneration and dosage compensation in plant sex chromosomes

    PubMed Central

    Papadopulos, Alexander S. T.; Chester, Michael; Ridout, Kate; Filatov, Dmitry A.

    2015-01-01

    The nonrecombining regions of animal Y chromosomes are known to undergo genetic degeneration, but previous work has failed to reveal large-scale gene degeneration on plant Y chromosomes. Here, we uncover rapid and extensive degeneration of Y-linked genes in a plant species, Silene latifolia, that evolved sex chromosomes de novo in the last 10 million years. Previous transcriptome-based studies of this species missed unexpressed, degenerate Y-linked genes. To identify sex-linked genes, regardless of their expression, we sequenced male and female genomes of S. latifolia and integrated the genomic contigs with a high-density genetic map. This revealed that 45% of Y-linked genes are not expressed, and 23% are interrupted by premature stop codons. This contrasts with X-linked genes, in which only 1.3% of genes contained stop codons and 4.3% of genes were not expressed in males. Loss of functional Y-linked genes is partly compensated for by gene-specific up-regulation of X-linked genes. Our results demonstrate that the rate of genetic degeneration of Y-linked genes in S. latifolia is as fast as in animals, and that the evolutionary trajectories of sex chromosomes are similar in the two kingdoms. PMID:26438872

  7. Mechanisms of distal axonal degeneration in peripheral neuropathies.

    PubMed

    Cashman, Christopher R; Höke, Ahmet

    2015-06-01

    Peripheral neuropathy is a common complication of a variety of diseases and treatments, including diabetes, cancer chemotherapy, and infectious causes (HIV, hepatitis C, and Campylobacter jejuni). Despite the fundamental difference between these insults, peripheral neuropathy develops as a combination of just six primary mechanisms: altered metabolism, covalent modification, altered organelle function and reactive oxygen species formation, altered intracellular and inflammatory signaling, slowed axonal transport, and altered ion channel dynamics and expression. All of these pathways converge to lead to axon dysfunction and symptoms of neuropathy. The detailed mechanisms of axon degeneration itself have begun to be elucidated with studies of animal models with altered degeneration kinetics, including the slowed Wallerian degeneration (Wld(S)) and Sarm knockout animal models. These studies have shown axonal degeneration to occur through a programmed pathway of injury signaling and cytoskeletal degradation. Insights into the common disease insults that converge on the axonal degeneration pathway promise to facilitate the development of therapeutics that may be effective against other mechanisms of neurodegeneration. PMID:25617478

  8. RADIOLOGICAL ANALYSIS OF EXPERIMENTAL DISC DEGENERATION IN RABBITS

    PubMed Central

    Vialle, Emiliano; Vialle, Luiz Roberto; Arruda, André de Oliveira; Riet, Ricardo Nascimento; Krieger, Antônio Bernardo de Queiroz

    2015-01-01

    Objective: To validate radiographic evaluation of a rabbit model for disc degeneration. Methods: Lumbar intervertebral discs of New Zealand rabbits were stabbed three times with a 18G needle at a limited depth of 5mm, through lateral approach. Serial radiographic images were taken on the early pre-and postoperative periods, and after four, eight and 12 weeks of the procedure, with subsequent analysis of disc height, osteophyte formation, endplate sclerosis, and presence of disc degeneration. The statistical analysis of data was validated by the Kappa coefficient, with a confidence interval (CI) of 95%. Results: A significant reduction of disc space was found on AP X-ray images after 12 postoperative weeks, with Kappa = 0.489 for CI 95% (0.25-0.72) with p < 0.001. X-ray signs of disc degeneration also presented Kappa = 0.63 for CI 95% (0.39-0.86) with p < 0.001. The remaining assessed criteria showed positive results, but with a lower Kappa value. Conclusion: The disc degeneration model using rabbits as proposed in this study was shown to be feasible, with positive X-ray correlation between pre- and postoperative images, validating the potential to induce disc degeneration in this animal model for future studies.

  9. Review: Retinal degeneration: Focus on the unfolded protein response

    PubMed Central

    Gorbatyuk, Oleg

    2013-01-01

    Recently published literature has provided evidence that the unfolded protein response (UPR) is involved in the development of retinal degeneration. The scope of these studies encompassed diabetic retinopathy, retinopathy of prematurity, glaucoma, retinal detachment, light-induced retinal degeneration, age-related macular degeneration, and inherited retinal degeneration. Subsequent studies investigating the role of individual UPR markers in retinal pathogenesis and examining the therapeutic potential of reprogramming the UPR as a method for modulating the rate of retinal degeneration have been initiated. Manipulation of UPR markers has been made possible by the use of knockout mice, pharmacological agents, and viral vector-mediated augmentation of gene expression. Future research will aim at identifying specific inhibitors and/or inducers of UPR regulatory markers as well as expand the list of UPR-related animal models. Additionally, adeno-associated virus-mediated gene delivery is a safe and effective method for modulating gene expression, and thus is a useful research tool for manipulating individual UPR markers in affected retinas and a promising delivery vector for gene therapy in retinal degenerative disorders. PMID:24068865

  10. Femoral head shape differences during development may identify hips at risk of degeneration.

    PubMed

    Vanden Berg-Foels, Wendy S; Schwager, Steven J; Todhunter, Rory J; Reeves, Anthony P

    2011-12-01

    Developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH) is a common cause of elevated contact stress and early onset osteoarthritis (OA). We hypothesized that adaptation to focal loading during postnatal development would result in signature changes to the shape of the femoral head secondary center of ossification (SCO). SCO shape was evaluated in a canine model of DDH at ages 14 and 32 weeks. The evolving 3D morphology of the SCO was captured using serial quantitative computed tomography. A discrete medial representation shape model was fit to each SCO and served as the basis for quantitative thickness and bending measurements. Shape measurements were tested for associations with hip subluxation and degeneration. At 32 weeks, the SCO was thinner (flatter) in the perifoveal region, the site of focal loading; a greater bend to the SCO was present lateral to the site of thinning; SCO thinning and bending were associated with less femoral head coverage and with a higher probability of degeneration. Shape changes were not detected at 14 weeks. Measurement and visualization of SCO shape changes due to altered loading may provide a basis for identifying hips at risk of early onset OA and a tool for surgical planning of hip restructuring. PMID:21909817

  11. [Survival factors in the treatment of hereditary retinal degeneration].

    PubMed

    Frigg, R; Wenzel, A; Grimm, C; Rem, C E

    2005-08-01

    Hereditary retinal degeneration is characterized by apoptotic photoreceptor loss, a process governed by intricate molecular interplay and initiated when proapoptotic signals predominate in the individual cell. Identification of molecules involved and their actions has paved the way for testing the ones with anti-apoptotic functions in models of inherited retinal degeneration. Many of these factors are able to slow the course of the degeneration. However, to date no such treatment has been able to stop or even prevent the devolution of the disorder. Moreover, preservation of morphology does not necessarily correlate with preservation of ERG function. Deepened understanding of the pro- and anti-apoptotic networks is clearly needed for survival factors to be feasible for therapy in humans. In comparison, in a dog model of Leber's congenital amaurosis gene therapy could establish retinal function, thus supplying proof of efficacy of the method. PMID:15990984

  12. Age-related macular degeneration: update for primary care.

    PubMed

    Fong, D S

    2000-05-15

    Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of severe vision loss among the elderly. In this condition, central vision is lost, but peripheral vision almost always remains intact. Affected persons rarely require canes or guide dogs. The diagnosis of age-related macular degeneration is based on symptoms and ophthalmoscopic findings, and the disease can be classified into atrophic and exudative forms. The two currently proven treatments are laser photocoagulation and photodynamic therapy, but these measures are effective in only a small fraction of eyes with the exudative form of macular degeneration. Vision rehabilitation can help patients maximize their remaining vision and adapt so that they can perform activities of daily living. Families need encouragement in providing support and helping patients adjust to being partially sighted. PMID:10839553

  13. Diverse cellular and molecular modes of axon degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Neukomm, Lukas J.

    2014-01-01

    The elimination of large portions of axons is a widespread event in the developing and diseased nervous system. Subsets of axons are selectively destroyed to help fine tune neural circuit connectivity during development. Axonal degeneration is also an early feature of nearly all neurodegenerative diseases, occurs after most neural injuries, and is a primary driver of functional impairment in patients. In this review, we discuss the diversity of cellular mechanisms by which axons degenerate. Initial molecular characterization highlights some similarities in their execution, but also argues that unique genetic programs modulate each mode of degeneration. Defining these pathways rigorously will provide new targets for therapeutic intervention after neural injury or in neurodegenerative disease. PMID:24780172

  14. Synaptic remodeling of neuronal circuits in early retinal degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Soto, Florentina; Kerschensteiner, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptor degenerations are a major cause of blindness and among the most common forms of neurodegeneration in humans. Studies of mouse models revealed that synaptic dysfunction often precedes photoreceptor degeneration, and that abnormal synaptic input from photoreceptors to bipolar cells causes circuits in the inner retina to become hyperactive. Here, we provide a brief overview of frequently used mouse models of photoreceptor degenerations. We then discuss insights into circuit remodeling triggered by early synaptic dysfunction in the outer and hyperactivity in the inner retina. We discuss these insights in the context of other experimental manipulations of synaptic function and activity. Knowledge of the plasticity and early remodeling of retinal circuits will be critical for the design of successful vision rescue strategies. PMID:26500497

  15. GLUT1 reductions exacerbate Alzheimer's disease vasculoneuronal dysfunction and degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Rege, Sanket V.; Bell, Robert D.; Perlmutter, David; Sengillo, Jesse D.; Hillman, Sara; Kong, Pan; Nelson, Amy R.; Sullivan, John S.; Zhao, Zhen; Meiselman, Herbert J.; Wendy, Rosalinda B.; Soto, Jamie; Abel, E. Dale; Makshanoff, Jacob; Zuniga, Edward; De Vivo, Darryl C.; Zlokovic, Berislav V.

    2015-01-01

    The glucose transporter GLUT1 at the blood-brain barrier (BBB) mediates glucose transport into the brain. Alzheimer's disease is characterized by early reductions in glucose transport associated with diminished GLUT1 expression at the BBB. Whether GLUT1 reduction influences disease pathogenesis remains, however, elusive. Here, we show that GLUT1 deficiency in mice overexpressing amyloid ?-petpide (A?) precursor protein leads to: 1) early cerebral microvascular degeneration, blood flow reductions and dysregulation, and BBB breakdown; and (2) accelerated amyloid ?-peptide (A?) pathology, reduced A? clearance, diminished neuronal activity, behavioral deficits, and progressive neuronal loss and neurodegeneration that develop after initial cerebrovascular degenerative changes. We also show that GLUT1 deficiency in endothelium, but not in astrocytes, initiates the vascular phenotype as shown by BBB breakdown. Thus, reduced BBB GLUT1 expression worsens Alzheimer's disease cerebrovascular degeneration, neuropathology and cognitive function suggesting that GLUT1 may represent a novel therapeutic target for Alzheimer's disease vasculo-neuronal dysfunction and degeneration. PMID:25730668

  16. Electromagnetic wave equations for relativistically degenerate quantum magnetoplasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Masood, Waqas; Eliasson, Bengt; Shukla, Padma K.

    2010-06-15

    A generalized set of nonlinear electromagnetic quantum hydrodynamic (QHD) equations is derived for a magnetized quantum plasma, including collisional, electron spin-(1/2), and relativistically degenerate electron pressure effects that are relevant for dense astrophysical systems, such as white dwarfs. For illustrative purposes, linear dispersion relations are derived for one-dimensional magnetoacoustic waves for a collisionless nonrelativistic degenerate gas in the presence of the electron spin-(1/2) contribution and for magnetoacoustic waves in a plasma containing relativistically degenerate electrons. It is found that both the spin and relativistic degeneracy at high densities tend to slow down the magnetoacoustic wave due to the Pauli paramagnetic effect and relativistic electron mass increase. The present study outlines the theoretical framework for the investigation of linear and nonlinear behaviors of electromagnetic waves in dense astrophysical systems. The results are applied to calculate the magnetoacoustic speeds for both the nonrelativistic and relativistic electron degeneracy cases typical for white dwarf stars.

  17. Triaxial degenerate dwarfs and pulsing X-ray sources

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Durisen, R. H.

    1975-01-01

    It is shown that triaxial configurations for rotating degenerate dwarfs consisting entirely of fluid are not limited to forms analogous to the Jacobi ellipsoids. Arguments are presented which rule out only the specialized class of uniformly rotating analogs of the Jacobi ellipsoid for some degenerate dwarfs. Several ways of forming triaxial degenerate dwarfs are examined along with the characteristic lifetimes of such objects. Noting that some of the alternative forms may exist in mass-transfer binary systems, consideration is given to the secondaries in Her X-1 and Cen X-3. It is suggested that the secondary in Her X-1 must be close to an analog of a Dedekind ellipsoid, and plausible triaxial white-dwarf configurations are proposed for the secondary in Cen X-3.

  18. Electromagnetic wave equations for relativistically degenerate quantum magnetoplasmas.

    PubMed

    Masood, Waqas; Eliasson, Bengt; Shukla, Padma K

    2010-06-01

    A generalized set of nonlinear electromagnetic quantum hydrodynamic (QHD) equations is derived for a magnetized quantum plasma, including collisional, electron spin- 1/2, and relativistically degenerate electron pressure effects that are relevant for dense astrophysical systems, such as white dwarfs. For illustrative purposes, linear dispersion relations are derived for one-dimensional magnetoacoustic waves for a collisionless nonrelativistic degenerate gas in the presence of the electron spin- 1/2 contribution and for magnetoacoustic waves in a plasma containing relativistically degenerate electrons. It is found that both the spin and relativistic degeneracy at high densities tend to slow down the magnetoacoustic wave due to the Pauli paramagnetic effect and relativistic electron mass increase. The present study outlines the theoretical framework for the investigation of linear and nonlinear behaviors of electromagnetic waves in dense astrophysical systems. The results are applied to calculate the magnetoacoustic speeds for both the nonrelativistic and relativistic electron degeneracy cases typical for white dwarf stars. PMID:20866534

  19. Detection of quantum well induced single degenerate-transition-dipoles in ZnO nanorods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Siddharth; Ghosh, Moumita; Seibt, Michael; Mohan Rao, G.

    2016-01-01

    Quantifying and characterising atomic defects in nanocrystals is difficult and low-throughput using the existing methods such as high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). In this article, using a defocused wide-field optical imaging technique, we demonstrate that a single ultrahigh-piezoelectric ZnO nanorod contains a single defect site. We model the observed dipole-emission patterns from optical imaging with a multi-dimensional dipole and find that the experimentally observed dipole pattern and model-calculated patterns are in excellent agreement. This agreement suggests the presence of vertically oriented degenerate-transition-dipoles in vertically aligned ZnO nanorods. The HRTEM of the ZnO nanorod shows the presence of a stacking fault, which generates a localised quantum well induced degenerate-transition-dipole. Finally, we elucidate that defocused wide-field imaging can be widely used to characterise defects in nanomaterials to answer many difficult questions concerning the performance of low-dimensional devices, such as in energy harvesting, advanced metal-oxide-semiconductor storage, and nanoelectromechanical and nanophotonic devices.Quantifying and characterising atomic defects in nanocrystals is difficult and low-throughput using the existing methods such as high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). In this article, using a defocused wide-field optical imaging technique, we demonstrate that a single ultrahigh-piezoelectric ZnO nanorod contains a single defect site. We model the observed dipole-emission patterns from optical imaging with a multi-dimensional dipole and find that the experimentally observed dipole pattern and model-calculated patterns are in excellent agreement. This agreement suggests the presence of vertically oriented degenerate-transition-dipoles in vertically aligned ZnO nanorods. The HRTEM of the ZnO nanorod shows the presence of a stacking fault, which generates a localised quantum well induced degenerate-transition-dipole. Finally, we elucidate that defocused wide-field imaging can be widely used to characterise defects in nanomaterials to answer many difficult questions concerning the performance of low-dimensional devices, such as in energy harvesting, advanced metal-oxide-semiconductor storage, and nanoelectromechanical and nanophotonic devices. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Details of hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanorods, ferroelectric characterisation, defocused imaging setup and parameters, sample preparation for defocused imaging, fundamental of dipole modelling, photoluminescence images with issues of spatial distribution and XRD confirmation of zinc-blend stacking fault. See DOI: 10.1039/c5nr06722g

  20. Key emerging issues in progressive supranuclear palsy and corticobasal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Josephs, Keith A

    2015-03-01

    It has been approximately 50 years since neurologists were introduced to the entities, "progressive supranuclear palsy" and "corticobasal degeneration". Since the two seminal publications, there have been significant advancements in our understanding of these two neurodegenerative diseases, particularly the fact that both are associated with tau. Recent advances over the past 3 years that are notable to the field are discussed in this review that covers clinical diagnosis, pathological features, neuroimaging and CSF biomarkers, genetic associations and clinical trials related to progressive supranuclear palsy and corticobasal degeneration. PMID:25701010

  1. Mapping the progression of progranulin-associated frontotemporal lobar degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Rohrer, Jonathan D; Warren, Jason D; Barnes, Josephine; Mead, Simon; Beck, Jonathan; Pepple, Tracey; Boyes, Richard; Omar, Rohani; Collinge, John; Stevens, John M; Warrington, Elizabeth K; Rossor, Martin N; Fox, Nick C

    2008-01-01

    Summary Background A 55-year-old woman was followed over a 13-year period as part of a longitudinal study of people at risk for familial dementia. She was a member of a family with an autosomal dominant familial dementia that fulfilled consensus criteria for frontotemporal lobar degeneration. She was initially asymptomatic but developed progressive behavioral and cognitive decline characterized by early apathy, impaired emotion recognition, mixed aphasia and parietal lobe dysfunction. Investigations Clinical assessments, neuropsychometry, volumetric brain MRI, genetic mutation screening. Diagnosis Progranulin-associated frontotemporal lobar degeneration. Management Explanation of the patient's condition and genetic counseling for her family. PMID:18648346

  2. Hepatic zonal degeneration and necrosis in Reye syndrome.

    PubMed

    Brown, R E; Ishak, K G

    1976-03-01

    Seven pediatric cases with hepatic peripheral zonal degeneration or necrosis in the liver, or both, were studied. From the standpoint of clinicopathological features, these cases fit best into the spectrum of Reye syndrome. Exogenous toxins, such as phosphorus and drugs, could not be implicated as principal causative factors in any of the cases. In the context of Reye syndrome, fatty acids would seem to have been the toxins most likely responsible for the pathogenesis of the peripheral zonal degeneration and necrosis in the liver. PMID:803201

  3. Intramuscular iron therapy and tapetoretinal degeneration. A case report.

    PubMed

    Syversen, K

    1979-06-01

    A 63-years-old male with pernicious anemia had been treated for 20 years with weekly injections of iron-dextran and cyanocobalamine. Ophthalmological examination revealed the ophthalmoscopic picture of a tapetoretinal degeneration, reduced visual acuity and narrow visual fields. ERG and dark-adaptation test were normal. Hematological examination including liver and bone marrow biopsies gave no support for the existence of systemic siderosis. It is proposed that the retinal degeneration is due to the extensive parenteral iron treatment with a total dose of approximately 100 grams of iron. This theory is supported by a previous experimental report. PMID:474082

  4. Mitochondrial degeneration after organic phosphate poisoning in prosimian primates.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, M M; Glees, P

    1977-01-01

    The degenerative reaction of mitochondria to tricresylphosphate (TCP) poisoning in spinal ganglion cells of Slow Loris (Nycticebus coucang coucang) were studied with the electron microscope. In neurones of animals treated with TCP, mitochondria display various stages of alterations which confirm mitochondrial involvement in TCP poisoning. The role of degenerated mitochondria in the formation of neuronal lipofuscin is discussed. It is suggested that the lipofuscin granule is a metabolic product inherently related to mitochondrial degeneration, irrespective of the primary cause: ageing or intoxication. PMID:401474

  5. Automated imaging dark adaptometer for investigating hereditary retinal degenerations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azevedo, Dario F. G.; Cideciyan, Artur V.; Regunath, Gopalakrishnan; Jacobson, Samuel G.

    1995-05-01

    We designed and built an automated imaging dark adaptometer (AIDA) to increase accuracy, reliability, versatility and speed of dark adaptation testing in patients with hereditary retinal degenerations. AIDA increases test accuracy by imaging the ocular fundus for precise positioning of bleaching and stimulus lights. It improves test reliability by permitting continuous monitoring of patient fixation. Software control of stimulus presentation provides broad testing versatility without sacrificing speed. AIDA promises to facilitate the measurement of dark adaptation in studies of the pathophysiology of retinal degenerations and in future treatment trials of these diseases.

  6. Degenerate Grazing Bifurcations in a Simple Bilinear Oscillator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yi, Tingting; Du, Zhengdong

    Degenerate grazing bifurcation occurring in a simple bilinear oscillator, namely the limit discontinuous case of the smooth and discontinuous (SD) oscillator, is investigated by numerical simulations. The unperturbed system has a saddle-like singularity at the origin with two periodic orbits grazing at the same point. The matrix in the leading-order truncation of the Poincar map at a grazing bifurcation for either of the two periodic orbits has a zero eigenvalue. Our numerical experiments suggest that the near-grazing dynamics are much more complicated than previously found. The results obtained in this paper is expected to be useful in developing analytical methods of this type of degenerate grazing bifurcations.

  7. Extended Hellmann-Feynman theorem for degenerate eigenstates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, G. P.; George, Thomas F.

    2004-04-01

    In a previous paper, we reported a failure of the traditional Hellmann-Feynman theorem (HFT) for degenerate eigenstates. This has generated enormous interest among different groups. In four independent papers by Fernandez, by Balawender, Hola, and March, by Vatsya, and by Alon and Cederbaum, an elegant method to solve the problem was devised. The main idea is that one has to construct and diagonalize the force matrix for the degenerate case, and only the eigenforces are well defined. We believe this is an important extension to HFT. Using our previous example for an energy level of fivefold degeneracy, we find that those eigenforces correctly reflect the symmetry of the molecule.

  8. Quantum Degenerate Gases in an All-Optical Toroidal Trap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marti, G. Edward; Olf, Ryan; Lourette, Sean; Stamper-Kurn, Dan

    2012-06-01

    Quantum degenerate gases confined in a toroidal potential show persistent currents, azimuthal sound waves, and other transport phenomena related to coherent, unrestricted flow around the waveguide. Sound waves and vortex states in a ring can be used to for accurate, absolute rotation sensing. We report on the status of our all-optical toroidal trap for Bose-condensed ^87Rb. We discuss techniques to generate angular momentum and unusual spin structures as well as future prospects with spinor gases and quantum degenerate lithium.

  9. Quantum Degenerate Rubidium in an All-Optical Toroidal Trap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marti, G. Edward; Olf, Ryan; Dunn, Gabriel; Stamper-Kurn, Dan

    2011-05-01

    Quantum degenerate gases confined in a toroidal potential show persistent currents and other transport phenomena relating to coherent, unrestricted flow around the waveguide. Vortex states are particularly interesting in such traps because multiply-charged states are topologically stable, unlike in a simply connected condensate. Much as a SQUID attains high magnetic field sensitivity, atomic configurations containing vortices may allow for accurate, absolute rotation sensing. We report on the status of our all-optical toroidal trap for Bose-condensed rubidium-87. We will discuss techniques to generate angular momentum in the condensate as well as future prospects with spinor gases and quantum degenerate lithium.

  10. Ranibizumab in neovascular age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Eng, Kenneth T; Kertes, Peter J

    2006-01-01

    Neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a visually devastating condition resulting from choroidal neovascularization and secondary photoreceptor loss. Ranibizumab and bevacizumab are medications that target vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). While other therapies have demonstrated some ability to reduce the risk of losing vision from neovascular AMD, most patients continue to lose some degree of central visual acuity. There is growing evidence that intravitreal administration of ranibizumab and bevacizumab is effective in significantly improving the visual acuity in patients with neovascular age-related macular degeneration. PMID:18046922

  11. Oxidative damage to mitochondria at the nodes of Ranvier precedes axon degeneration in ex vivo transected axons.

    PubMed

    Bros, Helena; Millward, Jason M; Paul, Friedemann; Niesner, Raluca; Infante-Duarte, Carmen

    2014-11-01

    Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction appear to contribute to axon degeneration in numerous neurological disorders. However, how these two processes interact to cause axonal damage-and how this damage is initiated-remains unclear. In this study we used transected motor axons from murine peripheral roots to investigate whether oxidative stress alters mitochondrial dynamics in myelinated axons. We show that the nodes of Ranvier are the initial sites of mitochondrial damage induced by oxidative stress. There, mitochondria became depolarized, followed by alterations of the external morphology and disruption of the cristae, along with reduced mitochondrial transport. These mitochondrial changes expanded from the nodes of Ranvier bidirectionally towards both internodes and eventually affected the entire mitochondrial population in the axon. Supplementing axonal bioenergetics by applying nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide and methyl pyruvate, rendered the mitochondria at the nodes of Ranvier resistant to these oxidative stress-induced changes. Importantly, this inhibition of mitochondrial damage protected the axons from degeneration. In conclusion, we present a novel ex vivo approach for monitoring mitochondrial dynamics within axons, which proved suitable for detecting mitochondrial changes upon exogenous application of oxidative stress. Our results indicate that the nodes of Ranvier are the site of initial mitochondrial damage in peripheral axons, and suggest that dysregulation of axonal bioenergetics plays a critical role in oxidative stress-triggered mitochondrial alterations and subsequent axonal injury. These novel insights into the mechanisms underlying axon degeneration may have implications for neurological disorders with a degenerative component. PMID:24973623

  12. Comparison of voltage parameters for the stimulation of normal and degenerate retina.

    PubMed

    Ye, Jang Hee; Goo, Yong Sook

    2007-01-01

    Retinal prosthesis is regarded as a promising method for restoring vision for the blind with retinal diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age related macular degeneration (ARMD). Among the several prerequisites for retinal prosthesis to succeed, one of the most important is the optimization of electrical stimuli applied through the prosthesis. Since the electrical characteristics of diseased retina are expected to be different with those of normal retina, we investigated different voltage parameters to stimulate normal and degenerate retina. The retinal degeneration model (rd/rd mouse) was compared against control mice. Voltage stimulations were delivered via one channel of 60 channels 8 x 8 Multi-electrode array (MEA), and ganglion cell activities were recorded with the remaining 58 channels. The parameters of voltage stimulation were set based on previous experiment with rabbit. Evoked ganglion cell responses were counted during a 10 - 20 ms time span after the stimulation. The voltage amplitudes and voltage durations were set to obtain consistent values for ganglion cell responses. When the same stimulus was applied on the rd/rd mouse, evoked ganglion cell responses were rarely observed. The distribution patterns of evoked responses appeared only on a site distant from the stimulation electrode on the rd/rd retina. Conversely, in normal retina, evenly distributed response patterns were observed. Since the charge intensity tends to decrease with the distance from stimulation electrode, the uneven patterns from the rd/rd mouse retina suggest that lower charge is required to evoke a response from rd/rd retina. PMID:18003327

  13. Biomechanical properties of lumbar endplates and their correlation with MRI findings of lumbar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Liu, Junhui; Hao, Lu; Suyou, Letu; Shan, Zhi; Maiwulanjiang, Mamuti; Li, Shengyun; Wang, Chongyan; Fan, Shunwu; Zhao, Fengdong

    2016-02-29

    How stiffness and strength of the human lumbar endplate vary with location, spinal level, and its correlation with MRI findings of lumbar degeneration, has not been reported in detail. 27 lumbar spines (16 male, 11 female, 31-49yrs) were harvested from cadavers without history of lumbar lesion or trauma. Disc and endplate degeneration was evaluated from MRI. Micro-CT was used to evaluate endplate microstructure. Indentation tests were performed to quantify stiffness and strength at 23 sites on each endplate from load-displacement graphs. Results showed that stiffness and strength increased from the centre of the endplate towards its periphery. There was no general age-related reduction in endplate stiffness or strength, although strength decreased slightly with age opposite the inner annulus. Disc degeneration was associated with a 39-46% decrease in stiffness, and a 21-30% decrease in strength, with effects being greatest near the endplate periphery. The presence of Modic changes had a similar effect. Strength and stiffness consistently increased at lower spinal levels, and were consistently greater in the inferior endplate (relative to the vertebra). Gender had little influence, although stiffness in the peripheral endplate was greater in males. BV/TV, SMI, Tb.Th and BMD were positively correlated with strength. We conclude that endplate properties reflect compressive stresses within adjacent intervertebral discs. Weaker and softer endplates may indicate reduced mechanical loading in decompressed discs that are stress-shielded by the neural arch. Preoperative MRI evaluation of endplate integrity could reduce the risk of implant subsidence following inter-body fusion. PMID:26892896

  14. Selective Rod Degeneration and Partial Cone Inactivation Characterize an Iodoacetic Acid Model of Swine Retinal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wei; de Castro, Juan Fernandez; Vukmanic, Eric; Zhou, Liang; Emery, Douglas; DeMarco, Paul J.; Kaplan, Henry J.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose. Transgenic pigs carrying a mutant human rhodopsin transgene have been developed as a large animal model of retinitis pigmentosa (RP). This model displays some key features of human RP, but the time course of disease progression makes this model costly, time consuming, and difficult to study because of the size of the animals at end-stage disease. Here, the authors evaluate an iodoacetic acid (IAA) model of photoreceptor degeneration in the pig as an alternative model that shares features of the transgenic pig and human RP. Methods. IAA blocks glycolysis, thereby inhibiting photoreceptor function. The effect of the intravenous injection of IAA on swine rod and cone photoreceptor viability and morphology was followed by histologic evaluation of different regions of the retina using hematoxylin and eosin and immunostaining. Rod and cone function was analyzed by full-field electroretinography and multifocal electroretinography. Results. IAA led to specific loss of rods in a central-to-peripheral retinal gradient. Although cones were resistant, they showed shortened outer segments, loss of bipolar cell synaptic connections, and a diminished flicker ERG, hallmarks of transition to cone dysfunction in RP patients. Conclusions. IAA provides an alternative rod-dominant model of retinal damage that shares a surprising number of features with the pig transgenic model of RP and with human RP. This IAA model is cost-effective and rapid, ensuring that the size of the animals does not become prohibitive for end-stage evaluation or therapeutic intervention. PMID:21896868

  15. Oocyte Degeneration Associated with Follicle Cells in Female Mactra chinensis (Bivalvia: Mactridae).

    PubMed

    Kim, Sung Han; Chung, Ee-Yung; Lee, Ki-Young

    2014-12-01

    Ultrastructural studies of oocyte degeneration in the oocyte, and the functions of follicle cells during oocyte degeneration are described to clarify the reproductive mechanism on oocyte degeneration of Mactra chinensis using cytological methods. Commonly, the follicle cells are attached to the oocyte. Follicle cells play an important role in oocyte degeneration. In particular, the functions of follicle cells during oocyte degeneration are associated with phagocytosis and the intracellular digestion of products. In this study, morphologically similar degenerated phagosomes (various lysosomes), which were observed in the degenerated oocytes, appeared in the follicle cells. After the spawning of the oocytes, the follicle cells were involved in oocyte degeneration through phagocytosis by phagolysosomes. Therefore, it can be assumed that follicle cells reabsorb phagosomes from degenerated oocytes. In this study, the presence of lipid granules, which occurred from degenerating yolk granules, gradually increased in degenerating oocytes. The function of follicle cells can accumulate reserves of lipid granules and glycogen in the cytoplasm, which can be employed by the vitellogenic oocyte. Based on observations of follicle cells attached to degenerating oocytes after spawning, the follicle cells of this species are involved in the lysosomal induction of oocyte degeneration for the reabsorption of phagosomes (phagolysosomes) in the cytoplasm for nutrient storage, as seen in other bivalves. PMID:25949203

  16. Oocyte Degeneration Associated with Follicle Cells in Female Mactra chinensis (Bivalvia: Mactridae)

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Sung Han; Chung, Ee-Yung; Lee, Ki-Young

    2014-01-01

    Ultrastructural studies of oocyte degeneration in the oocyte, and the functions of follicle cells during oocyte degeneration are described to clarify the reproductive mechanism on oocyte degeneration of Mactra chinensis using cytological methods. Commonly, the follicle cells are attached to the oocyte. Follicle cells play an important role in oocyte degeneration. In particular, the functions of follicle cells during oocyte degeneration are associated with phagocytosis and the intracellular digestion of products. In this study, morphologically similar degenerated phagosomes (various lysosomes), which were observed in the degenerated oocytes, appeared in the follicle cells. After the spawning of the oocytes, the follicle cells were involved in oocyte degeneration through phagocytosis by phagolysosomes. Therefore, it can be assumed that follicle cells reabsorb phagosomes from degenerated oocytes. In this study, the presence of lipid granules, which occurred from degenerating yolk granules, gradually increased in degenerating oocytes. The function of follicle cells can accumulate reserves of lipid granules and glycogen in the cytoplasm, which can be employed by the vitellogenic oocyte. Based on observations of follicle cells attached to degenerating oocytes after spawning, the follicle cells of this species are involved in the lysosomal induction of oocyte degeneration for the reabsorption of phagosomes (phagolysosomes) in the cytoplasm for nutrient storage, as seen in other bivalves. PMID:25949203

  17. Cesare Lombroso: an anthropologist between evolution and degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Mazzarello, Paolo

    Summary Cesare Lombroso (18351909) was a prominent Italian medical doctor and intellectual in the second half of the nineteenth century. He became world famous for his theory that criminality, madness and genius were all sides of the same psychobiological condition: an expression of degeneration , a sort of regression along the phylogenetic scale, and an arrest at an early stage of evolution. Degeneration affected criminals especially, in particular the born delinquent whose development had stopped at an early stage, making them the most atavistic types of human being. Lombroso also advocated the theory that genius was closely linked with madness. A man of genius was a degenerate, an example of retrograde evolution in whom madness was a form of biological compensation for excessive intellectual development. To confirm this theory, in August 1897, Lombroso, while attending the Twelfth International Medical Congress in Moscow, decided to meet the great Russian writer Lev Tolstoy in order to directly verify, in him, his theory of degeneration in the genius. Lombrosos anthropological ideas fuelled a heated debate on the biological determinism of human behaviour. PMID:21729591

  18. The Experience of Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wong, Elaine Y. H.; Guymer, Robyn H.; Hassell, Jennifer B.; Keeffe, Jill E.

    2004-01-01

    This qualitative article describes the impact of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) among 15 participants: how a person makes sense of ARMD, the effect of ARMD on the person's quality of life, the psychological disturbances associated with the limitations of ARMD, and the influence of ARMD on social interactions. Such in-depth appreciation of

  19. Awareness, Knowledge, and Concern about Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cimarolli, Verena R.; Laban-Baker, Allie; Hamilton, Wanda S.; Stuen, Cynthia

    2012-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD)--a common eye disease causing vision loss--can be detected early through regular eye-health examinations, and measures can be taken to prevent visual decline. Getting eye examinations requires certain levels of awareness, knowledge, and concern related to AMD. However, little is known about AMD-related

  20. Treatment of dry age-related macular degeneration with dobesilate.

    PubMed

    Cuevas, P; Outeirio, L A; Angulo, J; Gimnez-Gallego, G

    2012-01-01

    The authors present anatomical and functional evidences of dry age-macular degeneration improvement, after intravitreal treatment with dobesilate. Main outcomes measures were normalisation of retinal structure and function, assessed by optical coherence tomography, fundus-monitored microperimetry, electrophysiology and visual acuity. The effect might be related to the normalisation of the outer retinal architecture. PMID:22729337

  1. Urocortin 2 treatment is protective in excitotoxic retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Szabadfi, K; Kiss, P; Reglodi, D; Fekete, E M; Tamas, A; Danyadi, B; Atlasz, T; Gabriel, R

    2014-03-01

    Urocortin 2 (Ucn 2) is a corticotrop releasing factor paralog peptide with many physiological functions and it has widespread distribution. There are some data on the cytoprotective effects of Ucn 2, but less is known about its neuro- and retinoprotective actions. We have previously shown that Ucn 2 is protective in ischemia-induced retinal degeneration. The aim of the present study was to examine the protective potential of Ucn 2 in monosodium-glutamate (MSG)-induced retinal degeneration by routine histology and to investigate cell-type specific effects by immunohistochemistry. Rat pups received MSG applied on postnatal days 1, 5 and 9 and Ucn 2 was injected intravitreally into one eye. Retinas were processed for histology and immunocytochemistry after 3 weeks. Immunolabeling was determined for glial fibrillary acidic protein, vesicular glutamate transporter 1, protein kinase C?, calbindin, parvalbumin and calretinin. Retinal tissue from animals treated with MSG showed severe degeneration compared to normal retinas, but intravitreal Ucn 2 treatment resulted in a retained retinal structure both at histological and neurochemical levels: distinct inner retinal layers and rescued inner retinal cells (different types of amacrine and rod bipolar cells) could be observed. These findings support the neuroprotective function of Ucn 2 in MSG-induced retinal degeneration. PMID:24311224

  2. Toxic neurofilamentous axonopathies -- accumulation of neurofilaments and axonal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Llorens, J

    2013-05-01

    A number of neurotoxic chemicals induce accumulation of neurofilaments in axonal swellings that appear at varying distances from the cell body. This pathology is associated with axonal degeneration of different degrees. The clinical manifestation is most commonly that of a mixed motor-sensory peripheral axonopathy with a disto-proximal pattern of progression, as in cases of chronic exposure to n-hexane and carbon disulphide. It has been demonstrated that protein adduct formation is a primary molecular mechanism of toxicity in these axonopathies, but how this mechanism leads to neurofilament accumulation and axonal degeneration remains unclear. Furthermore, little is known regarding the mechanisms of neurofilamentous axonopathy caused by 3,3'-iminodipropionitrile, an experimental toxin that induces proximal axon swelling that is strikingly similar to that found in early amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Here, we review the available data and main hypotheses regarding the toxic axonopathies and compare them with the current knowledge of the biological basis of neurofilament transport. We also review recent studies addressing the question of how these axonopathies may cause axonal degeneration. Understanding the mechanisms underlying the toxic axonopathies may provide insight into the relationship between neurofilament behaviour and axonal degeneration, hopefully enabling the identification of new targets for therapeutic intervention. Because neurofilament abnormalities are a common feature of many neurodegenerative diseases, advances in this area may have a wider impact beyond toxicological significance. PMID:23331301

  3. Speech and Language Findings Associated with Paraneoplastic Cerebellar Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Paslawski, Teresa; Duffy, Joseph R.; Vernino, Steven

    2005-01-01

    Paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration (PCD) is an autoimmune disease that can be associated with cancer of the breast, lung, and ovary. The clinical presentation of PCD commonly includes ataxia, visual disturbances, and dysarthria. The speech disturbances associated with PCD have not been well characterized, despite general acceptance that…

  4. Quantum error correction with degenerate codes for correlated noise

    SciTech Connect

    Chiribella, Giulio; Dall'Arno, Michele; D'Ariano, Giacomo Mauro; Macchiavello, Chiara; Perinotti, Paolo

    2011-05-15

    We introduce a quantum packing bound on the minimal resources required by nondegenerate error-correction codes for any kind of noise. We prove that degenerate codes can outperform nondegenerate ones in the presence of correlated noise, by exhibiting examples where the quantum packing bound is violated.

  5. The Effects of Simulated Microgravity on Intervertebral Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Li; Feng, Gang; Reames, Davis L; Shimer, Adam L; Shen, Francis H; Li, Xudong

    2012-01-01

    BACKGROUND CONTEXT Astronauts experience back pain, particularly low back pain, during and after spaceflight. Recent studies have described histological and biochemical changes in rat intervertebral discs after space travel, but there is still no in vitro model to investigate the effects of microgravity on disc metabolism. PURPOSE To study the effects of microgravity on disc degeneration and to establish an in vitro simulated microgravity study model STUDY DESIGN Discs were cultured in static and rotating conditions in bioreactor, and the characteristics of disc degeneration were evaluated METHODS The mice discs were cultured in a rotating wall vessel bioreactor where the microgravity condition was simulated. Intervertebral discs were cultured in static and microgravity condition. Histology, biochemistry, and immunohistochemical assays were performed to evaluate the characteristics of the discs in microgravity condition. RESULTS Intervertebral discs cultured in rotating bioreactors were found to develop changes of disc degeneration manifested by reduced red Safranin-o staining within the annulus fibrosus, downregulated GAG content and GAG/Hypro ratio, increased MMP-3 expression, and upregulated apoptosis. CONCLUSIONS We conclude that simulated microgravity induces the molecular changes of disc degeneration. The rotating bioreactor model will provide a foundation to investigate the effects of microgravity on disc metabolism. PMID:23537452

  6. Electron-ion relaxation time in moderately degenerate plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vronskii, M. A.; Koryakina, Yu. V.

    2015-09-01

    A formula is derived for the electron-ion relaxation time in a partially degenerate plasma with electron-ion interaction via a central field. The resulting expression in the form of an integral of the transport cross section generalizes the well-known Landau and Brysk approximations.

  7. Advancing Research and Treatment for Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration (ARTFL)

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-02-05

    FTLD; Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP); Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD); Corticobasal Degeneration (CBD); PPA Syndrome; Behavioral Variant Frontotemporal Dementia (bvFTD); Semantic Variant Primary Progressive Aphasia (svPPA); Nonfluent Variant Primary Progressive Aphasia (nfvPPA); FTD With Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (FTD/ALS); Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS); Oligosymptomatic PSP (oPSP); Corticobasal Syndrome (CBS)

  8. Treatment of dry age-related macular degeneration with dobesilate

    PubMed Central

    Cuevas, P; Outeirio, L A; Angulo, J; Gimnez-Gallego, G

    2012-01-01

    The authors present anatomical and functional evidences of dry age-macular degeneration improvement, after intravitreal treatment with dobesilate. Main outcomes measures were normalisation of retinal structure and function, assessed by optical coherence tomography, fundus-monitored microperimetry, electrophysiology and visual acuity. The effect might be related to the normalisation of the outer retinal architecture. PMID:22729337

  9. Therapeutic Approaches to Histone Reprogramming in Retinal Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Berner, Andre K; Kleinman, Mark E

    2016-01-01

    Recent data have revealed epigenetic derangements and subsequent chromatin remodeling as a potent biologic switch for chronic inflammation and cell survival which are important therapeutic targets in the pathogenesis of several retinal degenerations. Histone deacetylases (HDACs) are a major component of this system and serve as a unique control of the chromatin remodeling process. With a multitude of targeted HDAC inhibitors now available, their use in both basic science and clinical studies has widened substantially. In the field of ocular biology, there are data to suggest that HDAC inhibition may suppress neovascularization and may be a possible treatment for retinitis pigmentosa and dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD). However, the effects of these inhibitors on cell survival and chemokine expression in the chorioretinal tissues remain very unclear. Here, we review the multifaceted biology of HDAC activity and pharmacologic inhibition while offering further insight into the importance of this epigenetic pathway in retinal degenerations. Our laboratory investigations aim to open translational avenues to advance dry AMD therapeutics while exploring the role of acetylation on inflammatory gene expression in the aging and degenerating retina. PMID:26427391

  10. Speech and Language Findings Associated with Paraneoplastic Cerebellar Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Paslawski, Teresa; Duffy, Joseph R.; Vernino, Steven

    2005-01-01

    Paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration (PCD) is an autoimmune disease that can be associated with cancer of the breast, lung, and ovary. The clinical presentation of PCD commonly includes ataxia, visual disturbances, and dysarthria. The speech disturbances associated with PCD have not been well characterized, despite general acceptance that

  11. The Cerebellum and Language: Evidence from Patients with Cerebellar Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stoodley, Catherine J.; Schmahmann, Jeremy D.

    2009-01-01

    Clinical and imaging studies suggest that the cerebellum is involved in language tasks, but the extent to which slowed language production in cerebellar patients contributes to their poor performance on these tasks is not clear. We explored this relationship in 18 patients with cerebellar degeneration and 16 healthy controls who completed measures

  12. Nutritional modulation of age-related macular degeneration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness in the elderly worldwide. It affects 30-50 million individuals and clinical hallmarks of AMD are observed in at least one third of persons over the age of 75 in industrialized countries (Gehrs et al., 2006). Costs associated wi...

  13. Anisotropic uniqueness classes for a degenerate parabolic equation

    SciTech Connect

    Vil'danova, V F; Mukminov, F Kh

    2013-11-30

    Anisotropic uniqueness classes of Tacklind type are identified for a degenerate linear parabolic equation of the second order in an unbounded domain. The Cauchy problem and mixed problems with boundary conditions of the first and third type are considered. Bibliography: 18 titles.

  14. Gestural Imitation and Limb Apraxia in Corticobasal Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salter, Jennifer E.; Roy, Eric A.; Black, Sandra E.; Joshi, Anish; Almeida, Quincy

    2004-01-01

    Limb apraxia is a common symptom of corticobasal degeneration (CBD). While previous research has shown that individuals with CBD have difficulty imitating transitive (tool-use actions) and intransitive non-representational gestures (nonsense actions), intransitive representational gestures (actions without a tool) have not been examined. In the…

  15. MicroRNAs: New players in intervertebral disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Wang, Cheng; Wang, Wen-Jun; Yan, Yi-Guo; Xiang, Yong-Xiao; Zhang, Jian; Tang, Zhi-Han; Jiang, Zhi-Sheng

    2015-10-23

    Chronic low back pain is generally attributed to intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration (IDD), which is closely associated with apoptosis, extracellular matrix (ECM) disruption, cell proliferation and inflammatory response. Currently, there is no clinical therapy targeting the pathophysiology of disc degeneration. microRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small noncoding RNA molecules that negatively regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional levels. miRNAs not only regulate many normal physiological processes, but also play an important role in the development of most disorders, including degenerative disc disease. A variety of miRNAs are differentially expressed in degenerative human IVD tissues and cells. Among these, some of the miRNAs have been shown to be involved in multiple pathological processes during disc degeneration, including apoptosis, ECM degradation, cell proliferation and inflammatory response. This review will mainly focus on the expression profiles, roles, and therapeutic implications of miRNAs in IDD. With continued efforts, restoration of dysregulated miRNA expression may represent a promising biological treatment approach for mitigating or reversing IVD degeneration. PMID:26368266

  16. Inflammatory Mediators in Intervertebral Disk Degeneration and Discogenic Pain

    PubMed Central

    Wuertz, Karin; Haglund, Lisbet

    2013-01-01

    Although degeneration of the intervertebral disk has historically been described as a misbalance between anabolic and catabolic factors, the role of inflammatory mediators has long been neglected. However, past research clearly indicates that inflammatory mediators such as interleukin (IL)-1?, IL-6, IL-8 and tumor necrosis factor-? are expressed at higher levels in diseased intervertebral disks. Both disk cells as well as invading macrophages can be the source of the detected cytokines. Importantly, occurrence of inflammatory mediators in the disk can worsen the progress of degeneration by inducing the expression of matrix degrading enzymes as well as by inhibiting extracellular matrix synthesis. In addition, inflammatory mediators play a crucial role in pain development during intervertebral disk herniation (i.e., sciatica) and disk degeneration (i.e., discogenic pain). This review provides information on the most relevant inflammatory mediators during different types of disk diseases and explains how these factors can induce disk degeneration and the development of discogenic and sciatic/radiculopathic pain. PMID:24436868

  17. Exact null controllability of degenerate evolution equations with scalar control

    SciTech Connect

    Fedorov, Vladimir E; Shklyar, Benzion

    2012-12-31

    Necessary and sufficient conditions for the exact null controllability of a degenerate linear evolution equation with scalar control are obtained. These general results are used to examine the exact null controllability of the Dzektser equation in the theory of seepage. Bibliography: 13 titles.

  18. Degenerating Y chromosome of Drosophila miranda: a trap for retrotransposons.

    PubMed Central

    Steinemann, M; Steinemann, S

    1992-01-01

    In Drosophila miranda, the larval cuticle protein (Lcp) genes are located on the X2 and Y chromosomes, while in other Drosophila species the Lcp genes are inherited on the autosomes. We chose the D. miranda species as a model system to analyze the molecular bases of Y chromosome degeneration, a phenomenon observed in many species. DNA sequence analysis of the Y chromosomal Lcp gene locus reveals dense clustering of trapped retrotransposons. Once inserted at the Y chromosomal location they cannot easily be eliminated by unequal crossing-over, as recombination is a rare event in Drosophila males. In addition, we have uncovered an example of a completely inactive allele on the degenerating Y chromosome. The existence of such inactive Y-specific alleles was originally predicted in H. J. Muller's model for Y chromosome degeneration. We demonstrate that the Y chromosomal Lcp4 allele is no longer transcribed. From the divergence in DNA sequence organization of former homologous chromosome regions we conclude that changes in chromosome structure and destruction of genetic activity in degenerating Y chromosomes are based on one major mechanism, which operates by means of transposable elements. Images PMID:1323846

  19. Gestural Imitation and Limb Apraxia in Corticobasal Degeneration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salter, Jennifer E.; Roy, Eric A.; Black, Sandra E.; Joshi, Anish; Almeida, Quincy

    2004-01-01

    Limb apraxia is a common symptom of corticobasal degeneration (CBD). While previous research has shown that individuals with CBD have difficulty imitating transitive (tool-use actions) and intransitive non-representational gestures (nonsense actions), intransitive representational gestures (actions without a tool) have not been examined. In the

  20. NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTATION, CATARACTS AND AGE-RELATED MACULAR DEGENERATION

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Age-related cataract and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are the major causes of visual impairment and blindness in the aging population. Specific nutrients in the diet that are thought to be important in the prevention of these diseases are vitamins C and E, the carotenoids, lutein and zeaxa...

  1. Vitamin E supplementation and macular degeneration: randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Hugh R; Tikellis, Gabriella; Robman, Luba D; McCarty, Catherine A; McNeil, John J

    2002-01-01

    Objective To determine whether vitamin E supplementation influences the incidence or rate of progression of age related maculopathy (AMD). Design Prospective randomised placebo controlled clinical trial. Setting An urban study centre in a residential area supervised by university research staff. Participants 1193 healthy volunteers aged between 55 and 80 years; 73% completed the trial on full protocol. Interventions Vitamin E 500 IU or placebo daily for four years. Main outcome measures Primary outcome: development of early age related macular degeneration in retinal photographs. Other measures included alternative definitions of age related macular degeneration, progression, changes in component features, visual acuity, and visual function Results The incidence of early age related macular degeneration (early AMD 3) was 8.6% in those receiving vitamin E versus 8.1% in those on placebo (relative risk 1.05, 95% confidence interval 0.69 to 1.61). For late disease the incidence was 0.8% versus 0.6% (1.36, 0.67 to 2.77). Further analysis showed no consistent differences in secondary outcomes. Conclusion Daily supplement with vitamin E supplement does not prevent the development or progression of early or later stages of age related macular degeneration. What is already known on this topicAge related macular degeneration is the leading cause of loss of vision and blindness in elderly people; for people aged ?90 years, two out of every three will be affected and one in four will become blindCurrently, there are no methods of prevention or treatment in most cases, though a third of cases are due to cigarette smokingAntioxidant vitamins have been suggested as a possible preventionWhat this study addsDaily supplementation with 500 mg vitamin E for four years did not alter the incidence or progression of AMD PMID:12098721

  2. Repair of the degenerate retina by photoreceptor transplantation.

    PubMed

    Barber, Amanda C; Hippert, Claire; Duran, Yanai; West, Emma L; Bainbridge, James W B; Warre-Cornish, Katherine; Luhmann, Ulrich F O; Lakowski, Jorn; Sowden, Jane C; Ali, Robin R; Pearson, Rachael A

    2013-01-01

    Despite different aetiologies, age-related macular degeneration and most inherited retinal disorders culminate in the same final common pathway, the loss of photoreceptors. There are few treatments and none reverse the loss of vision. Photoreceptor replacement by transplantation is proposed as a broad treatment strategy applicable to all degenerations. Recently, we demonstrated restoration of vision following rod-photoreceptor transplantation into a mouse model of stationary night-blindness, raising the critical question of whether photoreceptor replacement is equally effective in different types and stages of degeneration. We present a comprehensive assessment of rod-photoreceptor transplantation across six murine models of inherited photoreceptor degeneration. Transplantation is feasible in all models examined but disease type has a major impact on outcome, as assessed both by the morphology and number of integrated rod-photoreceptors. Integration can increase (Prph2(+/?307)), decrease (Crb1(rd8/rd8), Gnat1(-/-), Rho(-/-)), or remain constant (PDE6?(rd1/rd1), Prph2(rd2/rd2)) with disease progression, depending upon the gene defect, with no correlation with severity. Robust integration is possible even in late-stage disease. Glial scarring and outer limiting membrane integrity, features that change with degeneration, significantly affect transplanted photoreceptor integration. Combined breakdown of these barriers markedly increases integration in a model with an intact outer limiting membrane, strong gliotic response, and otherwise poor transplantation outcome (Rho(-/-)), leading to an eightfold increase in integration and restoration of visual function. Thus, it is possible to achieve robust integration across a broad range of inherited retinopathies. Moreover, transplantation outcome can be improved by administering appropriate, tailored manipulations of the recipient environment. PMID:23248312

  3. Viruses Associated with Ovarian Degeneration in Apis mellifera L. Queens

    PubMed Central

    Gauthier, Laurent; Ravallec, Marc; Tournaire, Magali; Cousserans, François; Bergoin, Max; Dainat, Benjamin; de Miranda, Joachim R.

    2011-01-01

    Queen fecundity is a critical issue for the health of honeybee (Apis mellifera L.) colonies, as she is the only reproductive female in the colony and responsible for the constant renewal of the worker bee population. Any factor affecting the queen's fecundity will stagnate colony development, increasing its susceptibility to opportunistic pathogens. We discovered a pathology affecting the ovaries, characterized by a yellow discoloration concentrated in the apex of the ovaries resulting from degenerative lesions in the follicles. In extreme cases, marked by intense discoloration, the majority of the ovarioles were affected and these cases were universally associated with egg-laying deficiencies in the queens. Microscopic examination of the degenerated follicles showed extensive paracrystal lattices of 30 nm icosahedral viral particles. A cDNA library from degenerated ovaries contained a high frequency of deformed wing virus (DWV) and Varroa destructor virus 1 (VDV-1) sequences, two common and closely related honeybee Iflaviruses. These could also be identified by in situ hybridization in various parts of the ovary. A large-scale survey for 10 distinct honeybee viruses showed that DWV and VDV-1 were by far the most prevalent honeybee viruses in queen populations, with distinctly higher prevalence in mated queens (100% and 67%, respectively for DWV and VDV-1) than in virgin queens (37% and 0%, respectively). Since very high viral titres could be recorded in the ovaries and abdomens of both functional and deficient queens, no significant correlation could be made between viral titre and ovarian degeneration or egg-laying deficiency among the wider population of queens. Although our data suggest that DWV and VDV-1 have a role in extreme cases of ovarian degeneration, infection of the ovaries by these viruses does not necessarily result in ovarian degeneration, even at high titres, and additional factors are likely to be involved in this pathology. PMID:21283547

  4. Mechanism of calcium entry during axon injury and degeneration.

    PubMed

    LoPachin, R M; Lehning, E J

    1997-04-01

    Axon degeneration is a hallmark consequence of chemical neurotoxicant exposure (e.g., acrylamide), mechanical trauma (e.g., nerve transection, spinal cord contusion), deficient perfusion (e.g., ischemia, hypoxia), and inherited neuropathies (e.g., infantile neuroaxonal dystrophy). Regardless of the initiating event, degeneration in the PNS and CNS progresses according to a characteristic sequence of morphological changes. These shared neuropathologic features suggest that subsequent degeneration, although induced by different injury modalities, might evolve via a common mechanism. Studies conducted over the past two decades indicate that Ca2+ accumulation in injured axons has significant neuropathic implications and is a potentially unifying mechanistic event. However, the route of Ca2+ entry and the involvement of other relevant ions (Na+, K+) have not been adequately defined. In this overview, we discuss evidence for reverse operation of the Na+-Ca2+ exchanger as a primary route of Ca2+ entry during axon injury. We propose that diverse injury processes (e.g., axotomy, ischemia, trauma) which culminate in axon degeneration cause an increase in intraaxonal Na+ in conjunction with a loss of K+ and axolemmal depolarization. These conditions favor reverse Na+-Ca2+ exchange operation which promotes damaging extraaxonal Ca2+ entry and subsequent Ca2+-mediated axon degeneration. Deciphering the route of axonal Ca2+ entry is a fundamental step in understanding the pathophysiologic processes induced by chemical neurotoxicants and other types of nerve damage. Moreover, the molecular mechanism of Ca2+ entry can be used as a target for the development of efficacious pharmacotherapies that might be useful in preventing or limiting irreversible axon injury. PMID:9144441

  5. Detection of quantum well induced single degenerate-transition-dipoles in ZnO nanorods.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Siddharth; Ghosh, Moumita; Seibt, Michael; Mohan Rao, G

    2016-01-28

    Quantifying and characterising atomic defects in nanocrystals is difficult and low-throughput using the existing methods such as high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM). In this article, using a defocused wide-field optical imaging technique, we demonstrate that a single ultrahigh-piezoelectric ZnO nanorod contains a single defect site. We model the observed dipole-emission patterns from optical imaging with a multi-dimensional dipole and find that the experimentally observed dipole pattern and model-calculated patterns are in excellent agreement. This agreement suggests the presence of vertically oriented degenerate-transition-dipoles in vertically aligned ZnO nanorods. The HRTEM of the ZnO nanorod shows the presence of a stacking fault, which generates a localised quantum well induced degenerate-transition-dipole. Finally, we elucidate that defocused wide-field imaging can be widely used to characterise defects in nanomaterials to answer many difficult questions concerning the performance of low-dimensional devices, such as in energy harvesting, advanced metal-oxide-semiconductor storage, and nanoelectromechanical and nanophotonic devices. PMID:26691877

  6. [The utility of voxel-based morphometry in the diagnosis of spinocerebellar degeneration].

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Nobuyuki; Nanri, Kazunori; Taguchi, Takeshi; Tanaka, Noriko; Fujita, Tsuneo; Mitoma, Hiroshi; Kawata, Akihiro; Mizusawa, Hidehiro

    2014-06-01

    We evaluated atrophic sites in the brainstem and cerebellum in the patients with spinocerebellar degeneration by using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). Gray matter atrophy was found extensively in both the cerebellar hemispheres and vermis of subjects presenting the cerebellar variant of multiple system atrophy (MSA-C; n=9). In addition, remarkable white matter atrophy was observed in the middle cerebellar peduncle, brainstem, and cerebellar hemispheres. In contrast, gray matter atrophy was not apparent in the cerebellar hemispheres or vermis of subjects in the SCA3 group (n=6), whereas intense white matter atrophy was visible in the middle cerebellar peduncle, brainstem, and cerebellar hemispheres. White matter atrophy was also observed in the brainstem and surrounding the dentate nucleus in both cases of dentatorubral-pallidoluysian atrophy (DRPLA) (n=2), whereas gray matter atrophy of the cerebellum was not remarkable. In both the SCA6 group (n=3) and the SCA31 group (n=2), gray matter atrophy was prominent in the cerebellar hemispheres and vermis; however, white matter atrophy was not found in the middle cerebellar peduncle and brainstem, whereas symmetric atrophy of white matter was found in the vicinity of the dentate nucleus. In each of these diseases, VBM findings were consistent with the pathological findings; therefore, VBM can be considered a useful tool for the diagnosis of spinocerebellar degeneration. PMID:24899352

  7. Interventions for asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration for preventing retinal detachment

    PubMed Central

    Wilkinson, Charles P

    2015-01-01

    Background Asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration are visible lesions that are risk factors for later retinal detachment. Retinal detachments occur when fluid in the vitreous cavity passes through tears or holes in the retina and separates the retina from the underlying retinal pigment epithelium. Creation of an adhesion surrounding retinal breaks and lattice degeneration, with laser photocoagulation or cryotherapy, has been recommended as an effective means of preventing retinal detachment. This therapy is of value in the management of retinal tears associated with the symptoms of flashes and floaters and persistent vitreous traction upon the retina in the region of the retinal break, because such symptomatic retinal tears are associated with a high rate of progression to retinal detachment. Retinal tears and holes unassociated with acute symptoms and lattice degeneration are significantly less likely to be the sites of retinal breaks that are responsible for later retinal detachment. Nevertheless, treatment of these lesions frequently is recommended, in spite of the fact that the effectiveness of this therapy is unproven. Objectives The objective of this review was to assess the effectiveness and safety of techniques used to treat asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration for the prevention of retinal detachment. Search methods We searched CENTRAL (which contains the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Group Trials Register) (2014, Issue 2), Ovid MEDLINE, Ovid MEDLINE In-Process and Other Non-Indexed Citations, Ovid MEDLINE Daily, Ovid OLDMEDLINE (January 1946 to February 2014), EMBASE (January 1980 to February 2014), PubMed (January 1948 to February 2014), the metaRegister of Controlled Trials (mRCT) (www.controlled-trials.com), ClinicalTrials.gov (www.clinicaltrials.gov) and the World Health Organization (WHO) International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) (www.who.int/ictrp/search/en). We did not use any date or language restrictions in the electronic searches for trials. We last searched the electronic databases on 19 February 2014. Textbooks regarding retinal detachment and the reference lists of relevant reports were reviewed for additional study reports. We contacted experts in the field for details of other published and unpublished studies. Selection criteria This review was designed to include randomized controlled trials in which one treatment for asymptomatic retinal breaks and lattice degeneration was compared with another treatment or no treatment. Data collection and analysis Initially, one author assessed the search results and collected relevant studies. Since no studies met the inclusion criteria, no studies were assessed for risk of bias. No data were extracted and no meta-analysis could be performed. Main results No trials were found that met the inclusion criteria for this review. Authors’ conclusions No conclusions could be reached about the effectiveness of surgical interventions to prevent retinal detachment in eyes with asymptomatic retinal breaks or lattice degeneration, or both. Current recommendations for treatment, based upon a consensus of expert opinion, should be assessed in a randomized controlled trial. PMID:25191970

  8. Nonlinear Electromagnetic Waves in a Degenerate Electron-Positron Plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    El-Labany, S. K.; El-Taibany, W. F.; El-Samahy, A. E.; Hafez, A. M.; Atteya, A.

    2015-08-01

    Using the reductive perturbation technique (RPT), the nonlinear propagation of magnetosonic solitary waves in an ultracold, degenerate (extremely dense) electron-positron (EP) plasma (containing ultracold, degenerate electron, and positron fluids) is investigated. The set of basic equations is reduced to a Korteweg-de Vries (KdV) equation for the lowest-order perturbed magnetic field and to a KdV type equation for the higher-order perturbed magnetic field. The solutions of these evolution equations are obtained. For better accuracy and searching on new features, the new solutions are analyzed numerically based on compact objects (white dwarf) parameters. It is found that including the higher-order corrections results as a reduction (increment) of the fast (slow) electromagnetic wave amplitude but the wave width is increased in both cases. The ranges where the RPT can describe adequately the total magnetic field including different conditions are discussed.

  9. Current-Drive Efficiency in a Degenerate Plasma

    SciTech Connect

    S. Son and N.J. Fisch

    2005-11-01

    a degenerate plasma, the rates of electron processes are much smaller than the classical model would predict, affecting the efficiencies of current generation by external non-inductive means, such as by electromagnetic radiation or intense ion beams. For electron-based mechanisms, the current-drive efficiency is higher than the classical prediction by more than a factor of 6 in a degenerate hydrogen plasma, mainly because the electron-electron collisions do not quickly slow down fast electrons. Moreover, electrons much faster than thermal speeds are more readily excited without exciting thermal electrons. In ion-based mechanisms of current drive, the efficiency is likewise enhanced due to the degeneracy effects, since the electron stopping power on slow ion beams is significantly reduced.

  10. C1,1 regularity for degenerate elliptic obstacle problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daskalopoulos, Panagiota; Feehan, Paul M. N.

    2016-03-01

    The Heston stochastic volatility process is a degenerate diffusion process where the degeneracy in the diffusion coefficient is proportional to the square root of the distance to the boundary of the half-plane. The generator of this process with killing, called the elliptic Heston operator, is a second-order, degenerate-elliptic partial differential operator, where the degeneracy in the operator symbol is proportional to the distance to the boundary of the half-plane. In mathematical finance, solutions to the obstacle problem for the elliptic Heston operator correspond to value functions for perpetual American-style options on the underlying asset. With the aid of weighted Sobolev spaces and weighted Hölder spaces, we establish the optimal C 1 , 1 regularity (up to the boundary of the half-plane) for solutions to obstacle problems for the elliptic Heston operator when the obstacle functions are sufficiently smooth.

  11. Degenerate stars and gravitational collapse in AdS/CFT

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arsiwalla, Xerxes; de Boer, Jan; Papadodimas, Kyriakos; Verlinde, Erik

    2011-01-01

    We construct composite CFT operators from a large number of fermionic primary fields corresponding to states that are holographically dual to a zero temperature Fermi gas in AdS space. We identify a large N regime in which the fermions behave as free particles. In the hydrodynamic limit the Fermi gas forms a degenerate star with a radius determined by the Fermi level, and a mass and angular momentum that exactly matches the boundary calculations. Next we consider an interacting regime, and calculate the effect of the gravitational back-reaction on the radius and the mass of the star using the Tolman-Oppenheimer-Volkoff equations. Ignoring other interactions, we determine the "Chandrasekhar limit" beyond which the degenerate star (presumably) undergoes gravitational collapse towards a black hole. This is interpreted on the boundary as a high density phase transition from a cold baryonic phase to a hot deconfined phase.

  12. Degenerate band edge resonances in periodic silicon ridge waveguides.

    PubMed

    Wood, Michael G; Burr, Justin R; Reano, Ronald M

    2015-06-01

    We experimentally demonstrate degenerate band edge resonances in periodic Si ridge waveguides that are compatible with carrier injection modulation for active electro-optical devices. The resonant cavities are designed using a combination of the plane-wave expansion method and the finite difference time domain technique. Measured and simulated quality factors of the first band edge resonances scale to the fifth power of the number of periods. Quality factor scaling is determined to be limited by fabrication imperfections. Compared to resonators based on a regular transmission band edge, degenerate band edge devices can achieve significantly larger quality factors in the same number of periods. Applications include compact electro-optical switches, modulators, and sensors that benefit from high-quality factors and large distributed electric fields. PMID:26030540

  13. Specialised contacts of endoneurial fibroblasts with macrophages in wallerian degeneration.

    PubMed

    Ohara, S; Takahashi, H; Ikuta, F

    1986-10-01

    Wallerian degeneration was induced by crushing the mouse phrenic nerve at the neck. During a chronological study, a specialised cell contact was often observed between the activated endoneurial fibroblast and the macrophage at the period when the removal of myelin debris by macrophages was prominent in the endoneurium. The specialised contact was characterised by paired subplasmalemmal linear condensations with a relatively constant thickness and varied length. It was sometimes asymmetrical. In these specialised cell membrane areas the intercellular space was filled with fine granular material showing a midline denser stratum. Coated vesicles were occasionally found in association with the subplasmalemmal densities. The specialised contacts with these features are quite different from any type of previously described cell contact between fibroblasts but are morphologically identical to those reported between cells of the mononuclear phagocytotic system. The significance of specialised contacts between the fibroblasts and macrophages in Wallerian degeneration is discussed. PMID:3693095

  14. Iron in hereditary retinal degeneration: PIXE microanalysis. Preliminary results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sergeant, C.; Gouget, B.; Llabador, Y.; Simonoff, M.; Yefimova, M.; Courtois, Y.; Jeanny, J. C.

    1999-10-01

    Several types of hereditary retinal degeneration with progressive alteration of photoreceptors exist in men and animals. Recent immunohistochemical results have shown strong degradation of transferrin, the protein responsible for iron transport, in retinas of rats with hereditary retinal degeneration. Freeze-dried thin sections of rat retinas from different stages of the disease, and respective coeval control sections, have been analyzed using nuclear microprobe. In this first part of the study, the rat retinas at post-natal stages of 35 and 45 days have been analyzed. The sample preparation and the post-irradiation staining to determine precisely the retinal layers involved are described. Preliminary results of element distributions (K, Ca, Fe) in the rat retina layers are discussed. A very high content of calcium in the choriocapillaris of dystrophic rat retinas was observed. Preliminary results on iron distribution in the rat retina layers are presented.

  15. Universal dynamics of a degenerate unitary Bose gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornell, Eric

    2014-03-01

    It has long been thought that one can not study a degenerate Bose gas with fully resonant (unitary) interactions because the gas is unstable to three-body recombination. We find empirically instead that after a Bose-Einstein condensate has been tuned from a weakly interacting state to a fully unitary gas at the peak of a Feshbach resonance, it survives for a time long enough to permit the characterization momentum-population dynamics. In particular, a high momentum tail forms and comes to a quasi-steady state in perhaps 100 microseconds, while the sample continues to survive and indeed remains degenerate for considerably longer. We show that the shape- and time-dependence of the momentum distribution scale in a universal way with sample density. This work was done in collaboration with Phil Makotyn, Deborah Jin, Cathy Klauss and David Goldberger. This work was supported by NSF, ONR and NIST.

  16. Clinical diagnostic criteria and classification controversies in frontotemporal lobar degeneration

    PubMed Central

    RASCOVSKY, KATYA; GROSSMAN, MURRAY

    2014-01-01

    Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) can manifest as a spectrum of clinical syndromes, ranging from behavioural impairment to language or motor dysfunction. Recently, revised diagnostic criteria have been proposed for the behavioural and progressive aphasia syndromes associated with frontotemporal degeneration. The present review will summarize these diagnostic guidelines and highlight some lingering controversies in the classification of FTLD clinical syndromes. We will discuss common tools and methods used to identify the insidious changes of behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD), the value of new, patient-based tasks of orbitofrontal function, and the issue of a benign or phenocopy variant of bvFTD. With regard to primary progressive aphasia (PPA), we will discuss the scope of the semantic disorder in semantic-variant PPA, the nature of the speech disorder in non-fluent, agrammatic PPA, and the preliminary utility of a logopenic PPA classification. PMID:23611345

  17. Suppression of Density Fluctuations in a Quantum Degenerate Fermi Gas

    SciTech Connect

    Sanner, Christian; Su, Edward J.; Keshet, Aviv; Gommers, Ralf; Shin, Yong-il; Huang Wujie; Ketterle, Wolfgang

    2010-07-23

    We study density profiles of an ideal Fermi gas and observe Pauli suppression of density fluctuations (atom shot noise) for cold clouds deep in the quantum degenerate regime. Strong suppression is observed for probe volumes containing more than 10 000 atoms. Measuring the level of suppression provides sensitive thermometry at low temperatures. After this method of sensitive noise measurements has been validated with an ideal Fermi gas, it can now be applied to characterize phase transitions in strongly correlated many-body systems.

  18. Ultrafast Degenerate Transient Lens Spectroscopy in Semiconductor Nanosctructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leontyev, A. V.; Zharkov, D. K.; Shmelev, A. G.; Nikiforov, V. G.; Lobkov, V. S.

    2015-09-01

    We report the non-resonant excitation and probing of the nonlinear refractive index change in bulk semiconductors and semiconductor quantum dots through degenerate transient lens spectroscopy. The signal oscillates at the center laser field frequency, and the envelope of the former in quantum dots is distinctly different from the one in bulk sample. We discuss the applicability of this technique for polarization state probing in semiconductor media with femtosecond temporal resolution.

  19. The propagator formulation of the degenerate parametric oscillator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daniel, B.; Fesseha, K.

    1998-06-01

    After systematically deriving general expressions for a two-time correlation function and the photon number distribution in terms of the Q-function, we analyze the squeezing spectrum and the photon number distribution of the signal mode produced by a degenerate parametric oscillator operating below threshold. The time-dependent Q-function is obtained by solving the pertinent Fokker-Planck equation applying the method of evaluating the propagator discussed in J. Math. Phys. 33 (1992) 2179.

  20. Characterization of a Degenerate Fermi Gas of 87Sr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desalvo, B. J.; Yan, M.; Killian, T. C.

    2011-05-01

    We report progress on the study of a SU(10) degenerate Fermi gas of neutral 87Sr atoms. We will describe measurements of the magnetic sublevel populations using the optical Stern-Gerlach effect and discuss prospects for utilizing an optical Feshbach resonance to modify interactions. The ability to directly measure spin population and manipulate interactions, combined with the achievement of low T /TF paves the way toward studying the rich physics predicted for this novel system.

  1. Ignition Regime for Fusion in a Degenerate Plasma

    SciTech Connect

    Son, S.; Fisch, N.J.

    2005-12-01

    We identify relevant parameter regimes in which aneutronic fuels can undergo fusion ignition in hot-ion degenerate plasma. Because of relativistic effects and partial degeneracy, the self-sustained burning regime is considerably larger than previously calculated. Inverse bremsstrahlung plays a major role in containing the reactor energy. We solve the radiation transfer equation and obtain the contribution to the heat conductivity from inverse bremsstrahlung.

  2. Autophagy Protects the Retina from Light-induced Degeneration*

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yu; Sawada, Osamu; Kohno, Hideo; Le, Yun-Zheng; Subauste, Carlos; Maeda, Tadao; Maeda, Akiko

    2013-01-01

    Autophagy is a conserved feature of lysosome-mediated intracellular degradation. Dysregulated autophagy is implicated as a contributor in neurodegenerative diseases; however, the role of autophagy in retinal degeneration remains largely unknown. Here, we report that the photo-activated visual chromophore, all-trans-retinal, modulated autophagosome formation in ARPE19 retinal cells. Increased formation of autophagosomes in these cells was observed when incubated with 2.5 ?m all-trans-retinal, a condition that did not cause cell death after 24 h in culture. However, autophagosome formation was decreased at concentrations, which caused cell death. Increased expression of activating transcription factor 4 (Atf4), which indicates the activation of oxidative stress, was recorded in response to light illumination in retinas of Abca4?/?Rdh8?/? mice, which showed delayed clearance of all-trans-retinal after light exposure. Expression of autophagosome marker LC3B-II and mitochondria-specific autophagy, mitophagy, regulator Park2, were significantly increased in the retinas of Abca4?/?Rdh8?/? mice after light exposure, suggesting involvement of autophagy and mitophagy in the pathogenesis of light-induced retinal degeneration. Deletion of essential genes required for autophagy, including Beclin1 systemically or Atg7 in only rod photoreceptors resulted in increased susceptibility to light-induced retinal damage. Increased photoreceptor cell death was observed when retinas lacking the rod photoreceptor-specific Atg7 gene were coincubated with 20 ?m all-trans-retinal. Park2?/? mice also displayed light-induced retinal degeneration. Ultra-structural analyses showed mitochondrial and endoplasmic reticulum impairment in retinas of these model animals after light exposure. Taken together, these observations provide novel evidence implicating an important role of autophagy and mitophagy in protecting the retina from all-trans-retinal- and light-induced degeneration. PMID:23341467

  3. Smoking and Age-Related Macular Degeneration: Review and Update

    PubMed Central

    Velilla, Sara; Garca-Medina, Jos Javier; Garca-Layana, Alfredo; Pons-Vzquez, Sheila; Pinazo-Durn, M. Dolores; Gmez-Ulla, Francisco; Arvalo, J. Fernando; Daz-Llopis, Manuel; Gallego-Pinazo, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the main socioeconomical health issues worldwide. AMD has a multifactorial etiology with a variety of risk factors. Smoking is the most important modifiable risk factor for AMD development and progression. The present review summarizes the epidemiological studies evaluating the association between smoking and AMD, the mechanisms through which smoking induces damage to the chorioretinal tissues, and the relevance of advising patients to quit smoking for their visual health. PMID:24368940

  4. Complement pathway biomarkers and age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Gemenetzi, M; Lotery, A J

    2016-01-01

    In the age-related macular degeneration (AMD) 'inflammation model', local inflammation plus complement activation contributes to the pathogenesis and progression of the disease. Multiple genetic associations have now been established correlating the risk of development or progression of AMD. Stratifying patients by their AMD genetic profile may facilitate future AMD therapeutic trials resulting in meaningful clinical trial end points with smaller sample sizes and study duration. PMID:26493033

  5. Degeneration of the Y chromosome in evolutionary aging models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobo, M. P.; Onody, R. N.

    2005-06-01

    The Y chromosomes are genetically degenerated and do not recombine with their matching partners X. Recombination of XX pairs is pointed out as the key factor for the Y chromosome degeneration. However, there is an additional evolutionary force driving sex-chromosomes evolution. Here we show this mechanism by means of two different evolutionary models, in which sex chromosomes with non-recombining XX and XY pairs of chromosomes is considered. Our results show three curious effects. First, we observed that even when both XX and XY pairs of chromosomes do not recombine, the Y chromosomes still degenerate. Second, the accumulation of mutations on Y chromosomes followed a completely different pattern then those accumulated on X chromosomes. And third, the models may differ with respect to sexual proportion. These findings suggest that a more primeval mechanism rules the evolution of Y chromosomes due exclusively to the sex-chromosomes asymmetry itself, i.e., the fact that Y chromosomes never experience female bodies. Over aeons, natural selection favored X chromosomes spontaneously, even if at the very beginning of evolution, both XX and XY pairs of chromosomes did not recombine.

  6. Symptomatic articular cartilage degeneration: the impact in the new millennium.

    PubMed

    Jackson, D W; Simon, T M; Aberman, H M

    2001-10-01

    The symptomatic degeneration of articular cartilage and associated arthritis is among the most prevalent chronic conditions in the United States and the population most at risk is increasing. It is the leading cause of limitations in activities of daily living and is second to heart disease in causing work disability. The current and future socioeconomic impact of chronic articular cartilage disease on the healthcare system will be magnified by increasing numbers of patients who will seek relief of their symptoms and their disability to remain active. Because these individuals live longer and remain active, the proportion of their life living with symptoms and disability from articular cartilage degeneration increases. The economic, psychologic, and social impact of degenerative articular cartilage can be enormous for these individuals but it also impacts their family and society. The direct traditional medical costs and indirect economic and wage loss from arthritis in individuals the United States has reached in excess of $65 billion annually and is expected to increase as the population ages. In addition, the expenditures for complementary and alternative professional services and therapies for arthritis is increasing and is also in the billions of dollars annually. Because of these escalating costs, documenting the value of the patient and cost effectiveness to society of prevention and treatment programs for symptomatic articular cartilage degeneration will be required. PMID:11603698

  7. Quantum degenerate mixture of ytterbium and lithium atoms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, Anders H.; Khramov, Alexander; Dowd, William H.; Jamison, Alan O.; Ivanov, Vladyslav V.; Gupta, Subhadeep

    2011-07-01

    We have produced a quantum degenerate mixture of fermionic alkali-metal 6Li and bosonic spin-singlet 174Yb gases. This was achieved using sympathetic cooling of lithium atoms by evaporatively cooled ytterbium atoms in a far-off-resonant optical dipole trap. We observe the coexistence of Bose-condensed (T/Tc?0.8) 174Yb with 2.3104 atoms and Fermi degenerate (T/TF?0.3) 6Li with 1.2104 atoms. Quasipure Bose-Einstein condensates of up to 3104 174Yb atoms can be produced in single-species experiments. Our results mark a significant step toward studies of few- and many-body physics with mixtures of alkali-metal and alkaline-earth-metal-like atoms, and for the production of paramagnetic polar molecules in the quantum regime. Our methods also establish a convenient scheme for producing quantum degenerate ytterbium atoms in a 1064 nm optical dipole trap.

  8. Well-posedness results for triply nonlinear degenerate parabolic equations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreianov, B.; Bendahmane, M.; Karlsen, K. H.; Ouaro, S.

    We study well-posedness of triply nonlinear degenerate elliptic-parabolic-hyperbolic problems of the kind b(-diva(u,??(u))+?(u)=f, u|=u in a bounded domain with homogeneous Dirichlet boundary conditions. The nonlinearities b,? and ? are supposed to be continuous non-decreasing, and the nonlinearity a falls within the Leray-Lions framework. Some restrictions are imposed on the dependence of a(u,??(u)) on u and also on the set where ? degenerates. A model case is a(u,??(u))=f(b(u),?(u),?(u))+k(u)a(??(u)), with a nonlinearity ? which is strictly increasing except on a locally finite number of segments, and the nonlinearity a which is of the Leray-Lions kind. We are interested in existence, uniqueness and stability of L entropy solutions. For the parabolic-hyperbolic equation ( b=Id), we obtain a general continuous dependence result on data u,f and nonlinearities b,?,?,a. Similar result is shown for the degenerate elliptic problem, which corresponds to the case of b?0 and general non-decreasing surjective ?. Existence, uniqueness and continuous dependence on data u,f are shown in more generality. For instance, the assumptions [b+?](R)=R and the continuity of ??[ permit to achieve the well-posedness result for bounded entropy solutions of this triply nonlinear evolution problem.

  9. Exact nonlinear excitations in double-degenerate plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2012-06-15

    In this work, we use the conventional hydrodynamics formalism and incorporate the Chew-Goldberger-Low double-adiabatic theory to evaluate the nonlinear electrostatic ion excitations in double-degenerate (electron spin-orbit degenerate) magnetized quantum plasmas. Based on the Sagdeev pseudopotential method, an exact general pseudopotential is calculated which leads to the allowed Mach-number range criteria for such localized density structures in an anisotropic magnetized plasma. We employ the criteria on the Mach-number range for diverse magnetized quantum plasma with different equations of state. It is remarked that various plasma fractional parameters such as the system dimensionality, ion-temperature, relativistic-degeneracy, Zeeman-energy, and plasma composition are involved in the stability of an obliquely propagating nonlinear ion-acoustic wave in a double-degenerate quantum plasma. Current study is most appropriate for nonlinear wave analysis in dense astrophysical magnetized plasma environments such as white-dwarfs and neutron-star crusts where the strong magnetic fields can be present.

  10. Exact nonlinear excitations in double-degenerate plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2012-06-01

    In this work, we use the conventional hydrodynamics formalism and incorporate the Chew-Goldberger-Low double-adiabatic theory to evaluate the nonlinear electrostatic ion excitations in double-degenerate (electron spin-orbit degenerate) magnetized quantum plasmas. Based on the Sagdeev pseudopotential method, an exact general pseudopotential is calculated which leads to the allowed Mach-number range criteria for such localized density structures in an anisotropic magnetized plasma. We employ the criteria on the Mach-number range for diverse magnetized quantum plasma with different equations of state. It is remarked that various plasma fractional parameters such as the system dimensionality, ion-temperature, relativistic-degeneracy, Zeeman-energy, and plasma composition are involved in the stability of an obliquely propagating nonlinear ion-acoustic wave in a double-degenerate quantum plasma. Current study is most appropriate for nonlinear wave analysis in dense astrophysical magnetized plasma environments such as white-dwarfs and neutron-star crusts where the strong magnetic fields can be present.

  11. Electrostatic rogue-waves in relativistically degenerate plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Akbari-Moghanjoughi, M.

    2014-10-15

    In this paper, we investigate the modulational instability and the possibility of electrostatic rogue-wave propagations in a completely degenerate plasma with arbitrary degree of degeneracy, i.e., relativistically degenerate plasma, ranging from solid density to the astrophysical compact stars. The hydrodynamic approach along with the perturbation method is used to reduce the governing equations to the nonlinear Schrödinger equation from which the modulational instability, the growth rate of envelope excitations and the occurrence of rogue as well as super-rogue waves in the plasma, is evaluated. It is observed that the modulational instability in a fully degenerate plasma can be quite sensitive to the plasma number-density and the wavenumber of envelop excitations. It is further revealed that the relativistically degeneracy plasmas (R{sub 0} > 1) are almost always modulationally unstable. It is found, however, that the highly energetic sharply localized electrostatic rogue as well as super-rogue waves can exist in the astrophysical compact objects like white dwarfs and neutron star crusts. The later may provide a link to understand many physical processes in such stars and it may lead us to the origin of the random-localized intense short gamma-ray bursts, which “appear from nowhere and disappear without a trace” quite similar to oceanic rogue structures.

  12. Non-aggregating tau phosphorylation by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 contributes to motor neuron degeneration in spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Miller, Nimrod; Feng, Zhihua; Edens, Brittany M; Yang, Ben; Shi, Han; Sze, Christie C; Hong, Benjamin Taige; Su, Susan C; Cantu, Jorge A; Topczewski, Jacek; Crawford, Thomas O; Ko, Chien-Ping; Sumner, Charlotte J; Ma, Long; Ma, Yong-Chao

    2015-04-15

    Mechanisms underlying motor neuron degeneration in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), the leading inherited cause of infant mortality, remain largely unknown. Many studies have established the importance of hyperphosphorylation of the microtubule-associated protein tau in various neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. However, tau phosphorylation in SMA pathogenesis has yet to be investigated. Here we show that tau phosphorylation on serine 202 (S202) and threonine 205 (T205) is increased significantly in SMA motor neurons using two SMA mouse models and human SMA patient spinal cord samples. Interestingly, phosphorylated tau does not form aggregates in motor neurons or neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), even at late stages of SMA disease, distinguishing it from other tauopathies. Hyperphosphorylation of tau on S202 and T205 is mediated by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) in SMA disease condition, because tau phosphorylation at these sites is significantly reduced in Cdk5 knock-out mice; genetic knock-out of Cdk5 activating subunit p35 in an SMA mouse model also leads to reduced tau phosphorylation on S202 and T205 in the SMA;p35(-/-) compound mutant mice. In addition, expression of the phosphorylation-deficient tauS202A,T205A mutant alleviates motor neuron defects in a zebrafish SMA model in vivo and mouse motor neuron degeneration in culture, whereas expression of phosphorylation-mimetic tauS202E,T205E promotes motor neuron defects. More importantly, genetic knock-out of tau in SMA mice rescues synapse stripping on motor neurons, NMJ denervation, and motor neuron degeneration in vivo. Altogether, our findings suggest a novel mechanism for SMA pathogenesis in which hyperphosphorylation of non-aggregating tau by Cdk5 contributes to motor neuron degeneration. PMID:25878277

  13. Non-Aggregating Tau Phosphorylation by Cyclin-Dependent Kinase 5 Contributes to Motor Neuron Degeneration in Spinal Muscular Atrophy

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Nimrod; Feng, Zhihua; Edens, Brittany M.; Yang, Ben; Shi, Han; Sze, Christie C.; Hong, Benjamin Taige; Su, Susan C.; Cantu, Jorge A.; Topczewski, Jacek; Crawford, Thomas O.; Ko, Chien-Ping; Sumner, Charlotte J.; Ma, Long

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms underlying motor neuron degeneration in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), the leading inherited cause of infant mortality, remain largely unknown. Many studies have established the importance of hyperphosphorylation of the microtubule-associated protein tau in various neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. However, tau phosphorylation in SMA pathogenesis has yet to be investigated. Here we show that tau phosphorylation on serine 202 (S202) and threonine 205 (T205) is increased significantly in SMA motor neurons using two SMA mouse models and human SMA patient spinal cord samples. Interestingly, phosphorylated tau does not form aggregates in motor neurons or neuromuscular junctions (NMJs), even at late stages of SMA disease, distinguishing it from other tauopathies. Hyperphosphorylation of tau on S202 and T205 is mediated by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) in SMA disease condition, because tau phosphorylation at these sites is significantly reduced in Cdk5 knock-out mice; genetic knock-out of Cdk5 activating subunit p35 in an SMA mouse model also leads to reduced tau phosphorylation on S202 and T205 in the SMA;p35−/− compound mutant mice. In addition, expression of the phosphorylation-deficient tauS202A,T205A mutant alleviates motor neuron defects in a zebrafish SMA model in vivo and mouse motor neuron degeneration in culture, whereas expression of phosphorylation-mimetic tauS202E,T205E promotes motor neuron defects. More importantly, genetic knock-out of tau in SMA mice rescues synapse stripping on motor neurons, NMJ denervation, and motor neuron degeneration in vivo. Altogether, our findings suggest a novel mechanism for SMA pathogenesis in which hyperphosphorylation of non-aggregating tau by Cdk5 contributes to motor neuron degeneration. PMID:25878277

  14. Retinal degeneration increases susceptibility to myopia in mice

    PubMed Central

    Park, Hanna; Tan, Christopher C.; Faulkner, Amanda; Jabbar, Seema B.; Schmid, Gregor; Abey, Jane; Iuvone, P. Michael

    2013-01-01

    Purpose Retinal diseases are often associated with refractive errors, suggesting the importance of normal retinal signaling during emmetropization. For instance, retinitis pigmentosa, a disease characterized by severe photoreceptor degeneration, is associated with myopia; however, the underlying link between these conditions is not known. This study examines the influence of photoreceptor degeneration on refractive development by testing two mouse models of retinitis pigmentosa under normal and form deprivation visual conditions. Dopamine, a potential stop signal for refractive eye growth, was assessed as a potential underlying mechanism. Methods Refractive eye growth in mice that were homozygous for a mutation in Pde6b, Pde6brd1/rd1 (rd1), or Pde6brd10/rd10 (rd10) was measured weekly from 4 to 12 weeks of age and compared to age-matched wild-type (WT) mice. Refractive error was measured using an eccentric infrared photorefractor, and axial length was measured with partial coherence interferometry or spectral domain ocular coherence tomography. A cohort of mice received head-mounted diffuser goggles to induce form deprivation from 4 to 6 weeks of age. Dopamine and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) levels were measured with high-performance liquid chromatography in each strain after exposure to normal or form deprivation conditions. Results The rd1 and rd10 mice had significantly greater hyperopia relative to the WT controls throughout normal development; however, axial length became significantly longer only in WT mice starting at 7 weeks of age. After 2 weeks of form deprivation, the rd1 and rd10 mice demonstrated a faster and larger myopic shift (?6.140.62 and ?7.381.46 diopter, respectively) compared to the WT mice (?2.410.47 diopter). Under normal visual conditions, the DOPAC levels and DOPAC/dopamine ratios, a measure of dopamine turnover, were significantly lower in the rd1 and rd10 mice compared to the WT mice, while the dopamine levels were similar or higher than WT in the rd10 mice. Lower basal levels of DOPAC were highly correlated with increasing myopic shifts. Conclusions Refractive development under normal visual conditions was disrupted toward greater hyperopia from 4 to 12 weeks of age in these photoreceptor degeneration models, despite significantly lower DOPAC levels. However, the retinal degeneration models with low basal levels of DOPAC had increased susceptibility to form deprivation myopia. These results indicate that photoreceptor degeneration may alter dopamine metabolism, leading to increased susceptibility to myopia with an environmental visual challenge. PMID:24146540

  15. MRI evaluation of spontaneous intervertebral disc degeneration in the alpaca cervical spine.

    PubMed

    Stolworthy, Dean K; Bowden, Anton E; Roeder, Beverly L; Robinson, Todd F; Holland, Jacob G; Christensen, S Loyd; Beatty, Amanda M; Bridgewater, Laura C; Eggett, Dennis L; Wendel, John D; Stieger-Vanegas, Susanne M; Taylor, Meredith D

    2015-12-01

    Animal models have historically provided an appropriate benchmark for understanding human pathology, treatment, and healing, but few animals are known to naturally develop intervertebral disc degeneration. The study of degenerative disc disease and its treatment would greatly benefit from a more comprehensive, and comparable animal model. Alpacas have recently been presented as a potential large animal model of intervertebral disc degeneration due to similarities in spinal posture, disc size, biomechanical flexibility, and natural disc pathology. This research further investigated alpacas by determining the prevalence of intervertebral disc degeneration among an aging alpaca population. Twenty healthy female alpacas comprised two age subgroups (5 young: 2-6 years; and 15 older: 10+ years) and were rated according to the Pfirrmann-grade for degeneration of the cervical intervertebral discs. Incidence rates of degeneration showed strong correlations with age and spinal level: younger alpacas were nearly immune to developing disc degeneration, and in older animals, disc degeneration had an increased incidence rate and severity at lower cervical levels. Advanced disc degeneration was present in at least one of the cervical intervertebral discs of 47% of the older alpacas, and it was most common at the two lowest cervical intervertebral discs. The prevalence of intervertebral disc degeneration encourages further investigation and application of the lower cervical spine of alpacas and similar camelids as a large animal model of intervertebral disc degeneration. PMID:26135031

  16. Systemic blood plasma CCL5 and CXCL6: Potential biomarkers for human lumbar disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Grad, S; Bow, C; Karppinen, J; Luk, K D; Cheung, K M; Alini, M; Samartzis, D

    2016-01-01

    Lumbar disc degeneration severity on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is associated with low back pain. Pro-inflammatory chemokines CCL5 and CXCL6 are released by induced degenerative discs, and CCL5 has been associated with discogenic back pain. A case-control study was performed, based on the Hong Kong Disc Degeneration Population-Based Cohort of Southern Chinese, to investigate if systemic levels of CCL5 and CXCL6 were elevated in subjects with disc degeneration compared to non-degenerated individuals. Eighty subjects were selected, 40 with no disc degeneration (control group; DDD score 0) and 40 with moderate/severe disc degeneration (disc degeneration group; DDD score ?5) as noted on MRI. Subjects were matched for age, sex, body mass index and workload. Blood plasma samples were obtained from each individual, and levels of CCL5 and CXCL6 were measured. Secondary phenotypes of lumbar disc displacement and cervical disc changes were also assessed. CCL5 concentrations were significantly increased in the disc degeneration (mean: 19.8ng/mL) compared to the control group (mean: 12.8ng/mL) (p=0.015). The degeneration group demonstrated higher levels of CXCL6 (mean: 56.9pg/mL) compared to the control group (mean: 43.4pg/mL) (p=0.010). There was a trend towards elevated CCL5 levels with disc displacement in the degeneration group (p=0.073). Cervical disc degeneration was not associated with elevated chemokine levels (p>0.05). This is the first study to note that elevated systemic CCL5 and CXCL6 were associated with moderate/severe lumbar disc degeneration, further corroborating tissue studies of painful discs. These chemokines may be systemic biomarkers for the diagnosis and monitoring of disc degeneration. PMID:26728495

  17. The Local Type Ia Supernova Progenitors: One Double-Degenerate, No Symbiotics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pagnotta, Ashley; Schaefer, B. E.

    2012-01-01

    Although the basic mechanism responsible for Type Ia supernovae appears to be well understood (thermonuclear explosion of a carbon-oxygen white dwarf that has reached the Chandrasekhar mass limit), the identity of the progenitor system(s) remains a mystery. With implications from stellar evolution to frontline cosmology, it is critical to attack this problem from every possible angle. We present results from our study of three known historical Ia supernovae in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) which allow us to eliminate possible progenitor candidates for at least the local population. We used archival Hubble Space Telescope images of SNR 0509-67.5, SNR 0509-68.7, and SNR 0519-69.0 to determine the site of each explosion and then search the surrounding area for potential ex-companion stars that were left behind. The search was carried out within an error ellipse that accounts for measurement error on the geometric center of the remnant, the orbital velocity of the pre-supernova binary system, and kicks from the actual explosion. For SNR 0509-67.5, the error ellipse is empty to the HST 5? limiting magnitude of V=26.9. Using an LMC distance modulus of 18.5, this implies that any single degenerate ex-companion must be fainter than MV=+8.4 (corresponding approximately to a K9 main sequence star), which eliminates all currently-published single-degenerate models and leads us to conclude that this system had a double-degenerate (double white dwarf) progenitor. For SNR 0509-68.7 and SNR 0519-69.0, we can eliminate the possibility of red giant and subgiant ex-companions. It has been shown that the two confident galactic Ia supernovae (Tycho's SN 1572 and SN 1006) also do not have red giant ex-companion stars. Combined with our three systems, this eliminates the symbiotic progenitor channel for all of the nearby Ia supernovae. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (AST-1109420).

  18. Gaze holding deficits discriminate early from late onset cerebellar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Tarnutzer, Alexander A; Weber, K P; Schuknecht, B; Straumann, D; Marti, S; Bertolini, G

    2015-08-01

    The vestibulo-cerebellum calibrates the output of the inherently leaky brainstem neural velocity-to-position integrator to provide stable gaze holding. In healthy humans small-amplitude centrifugal nystagmus is present at extreme gaze-angles, with a non-linear relationship between eye-drift velocity and eye eccentricity. In cerebellar degeneration this calibration is impaired, resulting in pathological gaze-evoked nystagmus (GEN). For cerebellar dysfunction, increased eye drift may be present at any gaze angle (reflecting pure scaling of eye drift found in controls) or restricted to far-lateral gaze (reflecting changes in shape of the non-linear relationship) and resulting eyed-drift patterns could be related to specific disorders. We recorded horizontal eye positions in 21 patients with cerebellar neurodegeneration (gaze-angle=40) and clinically confirmed GEN. Eye-drift velocity, linearity and symmetry of drift were determined. MR-images were assessed for cerebellar atrophy. In our patients, the relation between eye-drift velocity and gaze eccentricity was non-linear, yielding (compared to controls) significant GEN at gaze-eccentricities?20. Pure scaling was most frequently observed (n=10/18), followed by pure shape-changing (n=4/18) and a mixed pattern (n=4/18). Pure shape-changing patients were significantly (p=0.001) younger at disease-onset compared to pure scaling patients. Atrophy centered around the superior/dorsal vermis, flocculus/paraflocculus and dentate nucleus and did not correlate with the specific drift behaviors observed. Eye drift in cerebellar degeneration varies in magnitude; however, it retains its non-linear properties. With different drift patterns being linked to age at disease-onset, we propose that the gaze-holding pattern (scaling vs. shape-changing) may discriminate early- from late-onset cerebellar degeneration. Whether this allows a distinction among specific cerebellar disorders remains to be determined. PMID:25980905

  19. The role of epigenetics in age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Gemenetzi, M; Lotery, A J

    2014-12-01

    It is becoming increasingly evident that epigenetic mechanisms influence gene expression and can explain how interactions between genetics and the environment result in particular phenotypes during development. The extent to which this epigenetic effect contributes to phenotype heritability in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is currently ill defined. However, emerging evidence suggests that epigenetic changes are relevant to AMD and as such provide an exciting new avenue of research for AMD. This review addresses information on the impact of posttranslational modification of the genome on the pathogenesis of AMD, such as DNA methylation changes affecting antioxidant gene expression, hypoxia-regulated alterations in chromatin structure, and histone acetylation status in relation to angiogenesis and inflammation. It also contains information on the role of non-coding RNA-mediated gene regulation in AMD at a posttranscriptional (before translation) level. Our aim was to review the epigenetic mechanisms that cause heritable changes in gene activity without changing the DNA sequence. We also describe some long-term alterations in the transcriptional potential of a cell, which are not necessarily heritable but remains to be defined in the future. Increasing understanding of the significance of common and rare genetic variants and their relationship to epigenetics and environmental influences may help in establishing methods to assess the risk of AMD. This in turn may allow new therapeutic interventions for the leading cause of central vision impairment in patients over the age of 50 years in developed countries. Search strategy We searched the MEDLINE/PubMed database following MeSH suggestions for articles including the terms: 'ocular epigenetic mechanisms', 'human disease epigenetics', and 'age-related macular degeneration genetics'. The headline used to locate related articles in PubMed was 'epigenetics in ocular disease', and to restrict search, we used the headlines 'DNA methylation in age related macular degeneration', 'altered gene expression in AMD pathogenesis'. A manual search was also based on references from these articles as well as review articles. PMID:25233816

  20. Taurine provides neuroprotection against retinal ganglion cell degeneration.

    PubMed

    Froger, Nicolas; Cadetti, Lucia; Lorach, Henri; Martins, Joao; Bemelmans, Alexis-Pierre; Dubus, Elisabeth; Degardin, Julie; Pain, Dorothée; Forster, Valérie; Chicaud, Laurent; Ivkovic, Ivana; Simonutti, Manuel; Fouquet, Stéphane; Jammoul, Firas; Léveillard, Thierry; Benosman, Ryad; Sahel, José-Alain; Picaud, Serge

    2012-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration occurs in numerous retinal diseases leading to blindness, either as a primary process like in glaucoma, or secondary to photoreceptor loss. However, no commercial drug is yet directly targeting RGCs for their neuroprotection. In the 70s, taurine, a small sulfonic acid provided by nutrition, was found to be essential for the survival of photoreceptors, but this dependence was not related to any retinal disease. More recently, taurine deprivation was incriminated in the retinal toxicity of an antiepileptic drug. We demonstrate here that taurine can improve RGC survival in culture or in different animal models of RGC degeneration. Taurine effect on RGC survival was assessed in vitro on primary pure RCG cultures under serum-deprivation conditions, and on NMDA-treated retinal explants from adult rats. In vivo, taurine was administered through the drinking water in two glaucomatous animal models (DBA/2J mice and rats with vein occlusion) and in a model of Retinitis pigmentosa with secondary RGC degeneration (P23H rats). After a 6-day incubation, 1 mM taurine significantly enhanced RGCs survival (+68%), whereas control RGCs were cultured in a taurine-free medium, containing all natural amino-acids. This effect was found to rely on taurine-uptake by RGCs. Furthermore taurine (1 mM) partly prevented NMDA-induced RGC excitotoxicity. Finally, taurine supplementation increased RGC densities both in DBA/2J mice, in rats with vein occlusion and in P23H rats by contrast to controls drinking taurine-free water. This study indicates that enriched taurine nutrition can directly promote RGC survival through RGC intracellular pathways. It provides evidence that taurine can positively interfere with retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:23115615

  1. Lack of Acid Sphingomyelinase Induces Age-Related Retinal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Bill X.; Fan, Jie; Boyer, Nicholas P.; Jenkins, Russell W.; Koutalos, Yiannis; Hannun, Yusuf A.; Crosson, Craig E.

    2015-01-01

    Background Mutations of acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase) cause NiemannPick diseases type A and B, which are fatal inherited lipid lysosomal storage diseases, characterized with visceral organ abnormalities and neurodegeneration. However, the effects of suppressing retinal ASMase expression are not understood. The goal of this study was to determine if the disruption of ASMase expression impacts the retinal structure and function in the mouse, and begin to investigate the mechanisms underlying these abnormalities. Methods Acid sphingomyelinase knockout (ASMase KO) mice were utilized to study the roles of this sphingolipid metabolizing enzyme in the retina. Electroretinogram and morphometric analysis were used to assess the retinal function and structure at various ages. Sphingolipid profile was determined by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Western blots evaluated the level of the autophagy marker LC3-II. Results When compared to control animals, ASMase KO mice exhibited significant age-dependent reduction in ERG a- and b-wave amplitudes. Associated with these functional deficits, morphometric analysis revealed progressive thinning of retinal layers; however, the most prominent degeneration was observed in the photoreceptor and outer nuclear layer. Additional analyses of ASMase KO mice revealed early reduction in ERG c-wave amplitudes and increased lipofuscin accumulation in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Sphingolipid analyses showed abnormal accumulation of sphingomyelin and sphingosine in ASMase KO retinas. Western blot analyses showed a higher level of the autophagosome marker LC3-II. Conclusions These studies demonstrate that ASMase is necessary for the maintenance of normal retinal structure and function. The early outer retinal dysfunction, outer segment degeneration, accumulation of lipofuscin and autophagosome markers provide evidence that disruption of lysosomal function contributes to the age-dependent retinal degeneration exhibited by ASMase KO mice. PMID:26168297

  2. Striatal degeneration impairs language learning: evidence from Huntington's disease

    PubMed Central

    De Diego-Balaguer, Ruth; Couette, Marylin; Dolbeau, Guillaume; Drr, Alexandra; Youssov, Katia; Bachoud-Lvi, Anne-Catherine

    2008-01-01

    Although the role of the striatum in language processing is still largely unclear, a number of recent proposals have outlined its specific contribution. Different studies report evidence converging to a picture where the striatum may be involved in those aspects of rule-application requiring non-automatized behavior. This is the main characteristic of the earliest phases of language acquisition that require the online detection of distant dependencies and the creation of syntactic categories by means of rule learning. Learning of sequences and categorization processes in non-language domains has been known to require striatal recruitment. Thus, we hypothesized that the striatum should play a prominent role in the extraction of rules in learning a language. We studied 13 pre-symptomatic gene-carriers and 22 early stage patients of Huntingtons disease (HD), both characterized by a progressive degeneration of the striatum and 21 late stage patients HD (18 stages II, 2 stage III and 1 stage IV) where cortical degeneration accompanies striatal degeneration. When presented with a simplified artificial language where words and rules could be extracted, early stage HD patients (stage I) were impaired in the learning test, demonstrating a greater impairment in rule than word learning compared to the twenty age- and education- matched controls. HD patients at later stages were impaired both on word and rule learning. While spared in their overall performance, gene-carriers having learned a set of abstract artificial language rules were then impaired in the transfer of those rules to similar artificial language structures. The correlation analyses among several neuropsychological tests assessing executive function showed that rule learning correlated with tests requiring working memory and attentional control, while word learning correlated with a test involving episodic memory. These learning impairments significantly correlated with the bicaudate ratio. The overall results support striatal involvement in rule extraction from speech and suggest that language acquisition requires several aspects of memory and executive functions for word and rule learning. PMID:18842608

  3. Taurine Provides Neuroprotection against Retinal Ganglion Cell Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Froger, Nicolas; Cadetti, Lucia; Lorach, Henri; Martins, Joao; Bemelmans, Alexis-Pierre; Dubus, Elisabeth; Degardin, Julie; Pain, Dorothée; Forster, Valérie; Chicaud, Laurent; Ivkovic, Ivana; Simonutti, Manuel; Fouquet, Stéphane; Jammoul, Firas; Léveillard, Thierry; Benosman, Ryad; Sahel, José-Alain; Picaud, Serge

    2012-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration occurs in numerous retinal diseases leading to blindness, either as a primary process like in glaucoma, or secondary to photoreceptor loss. However, no commercial drug is yet directly targeting RGCs for their neuroprotection. In the 70s, taurine, a small sulfonic acid provided by nutrition, was found to be essential for the survival of photoreceptors, but this dependence was not related to any retinal disease. More recently, taurine deprivation was incriminated in the retinal toxicity of an antiepileptic drug. We demonstrate here that taurine can improve RGC survival in culture or in different animal models of RGC degeneration. Taurine effect on RGC survival was assessed in vitro on primary pure RCG cultures under serum-deprivation conditions, and on NMDA-treated retinal explants from adult rats. In vivo, taurine was administered through the drinking water in two glaucomatous animal models (DBA/2J mice and rats with vein occlusion) and in a model of Retinitis pigmentosa with secondary RGC degeneration (P23H rats). After a 6-day incubation, 1 mM taurine significantly enhanced RGCs survival (+68%), whereas control RGCs were cultured in a taurine-free medium, containing all natural amino-acids. This effect was found to rely on taurine-uptake by RGCs. Furthermore taurine (1 mM) partly prevented NMDA-induced RGC excitotoxicity. Finally, taurine supplementation increased RGC densities both in DBA/2J mice, in rats with vein occlusion and in P23H rats by contrast to controls drinking taurine-free water. This study indicates that enriched taurine nutrition can directly promote RGC survival through RGC intracellular pathways. It provides evidence that taurine can positively interfere with retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:23115615

  4. CREB1/ATF1 Activation in Photoreceptor Degeneration and Protection

    PubMed Central

    Beltran, William A.; Allore, Heather G.; Johnson, Elizabeth; Towle, Virginia; Tao, Weng; Acland, Gregory M.; Aguirre, Gustavo D.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose. The cAMP response element binding protein 1 (CREB1) and activating transcription factor 1 (ATF1) are closely related members of the bZIP superfamily of transcription factors. Both are activated in response to a wide array of stimuli, including cellular stress. This study was conducted to assess the CREB1/ATF1 pathway in photoreceptor disease and protection. Methods. The expression levels of p-CREB1, CREB1, and ATF1 were examined by immunoblot and immunohistochemistry in normal canine retina and retinas of several canine models of retinal degeneration (rcd1, rcd2, erd, prcd, XLPRA1, XLPRA2, T4R RHO). Humans retinas affected with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) were also examined. p-CREB1/ATF1 immunolabeling was assessed in normal and rcd1 dogs treated with ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF), to examine the effect of a neuroprotective stimulus on activation of CREB1/ATF1. Results. Native CREB1 and ATF1 as well as phosphorylated CREB1/ATF1 was examined in normal canine retina by immunoblot. The p-CREB1 antibody identified phosphorylated CREB1 and ATF1 and labeled the inner retina only in normal dogs. In degenerate canine and human retinas, strong immunolabeling appeared in rod and cone photoreceptors, indicating increased expression of native CREB1 and ATF1, as well as increased phosphorylation of these proteins. Retinal protection by CNTF in rcd1 dogs was accompanied by a significant increase in the number of p-CREB1/ATF1-labeled photoreceptor nuclei. Conclusions. Positive association of CREB1/ATF1 phosphorylation with photoreceptor protection suggests that it may contribute to an innate protective response. These data identify a signaling mechanism in rods and cones of potential importance for therapies of RP and AMD. PMID:19643965

  5. Decreased Proteasomal Activity Causes Photoreceptor Degeneration in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Ando, Ryo; Noda, Kousuke; Tomaru, Utano; Kamoshita, Mamoru; Ozawa, Yoko; Notomi, Shoji; Hisatomi, Toshio; Noda, Mika; Kanda, Atsuhiro; Ishibashi, Tatsuro; Kasahara, Masanori; Ishida, Susumu

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To study the retinal degeneration caused by decreased proteasomal activity in β5t transgenic (β5t-Tg) mice, an animal model of senescence acceleration. Methods. β5t-Tg mice and age-matched littermate control (WT) mice were used. Proteasomal activities and protein level of poly-ubiquitinated protein in retinal extracts were quantified. Fundus images of β5t-Tg mice were taken and their features were assessed. For histologic evaluation, the thicknesses of inner nuclear layer (INL), outer nuclear layer (ONL), and photoreceptor outer segment (OS) were measured. For functional analysis, ERG was recorded under scotopic and photopic illumination conditions. Immunofluorescence (IF) staining and TUNEL were performed to investigate the mechanism of photoreceptor degeneration. Results. Chymotrypsin-like activity was partially suppressed in retinal tissues of β5t-Tg mice. Retinal degenerative changes with arterial attenuation were present in β5t-Tg, but not in WT mice. Inner nuclear layer thickness showed no significant change between β5t-Tg and WT mice at 1, 3, 6, and 9 months of age. By contrast, thicknesses of ONL and OS in β5t-Tg mice were significantly decreased at 3, 6, and 9 months compared with those in WT mice. Electroretinograms showed decrease of scotopic a-wave amplitude in β5t-Tg mice. The number of TUNEL-positive cells in ONL were significantly increased in β5t-Tg mice and colocalized with apoptosis-inducing factor, but not with cleaved caspase-3 and -9, indicating that the photoreceptor cell death was induced via a caspase-independent pathway. Conclusions. The current data showed that impaired proteasomal function causes photoreceptor degeneration. PMID:24994871

  6. PCR Amplicon Prediction from Multiplex Degenerate Primer and Probe Sets

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2013-08-08

    Assessing primer specificity and predicting both desired and off-target amplification products is an essential step for robust PCR assay design. Code is described to predict potential polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplicons in a large sequence database such as NCBI nt from either singleplex or a large multiplexed set of primers, allowing degenerate primer and probe bases, with target mismatch annotates amplicons with gene information automatically downloaded from NCBI, and optionally it can predict whether theremore » are also TaqMan/Luminex probe matches within predicted amplicons.« less

  7. Future Therapies of Wet Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Daisuke; Sawada, Yu; Abe, Sanae; Yoshitomi, Takeshi

    2015-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness in the elderly population, and the prevalence of the disease increases exponentially with every decade after the age of 50 years. While VEGF inhibitors are promising drugs for treating patients with ocular neovascularization, there are limitations to their potential for improving vision in AMD patients. Thus, future therapies are required to have the potential to improve visual outcomes. This paper will summarize the future strategies and therapeutic targets that are aimed at enhancing the efficacy and duration of effect of antiangiogenic strategies. PMID:25802751

  8. Expansion of a quantum degenerate boson-fermion mixture

    SciTech Connect

    Hu, Hui; Liu, Xia-Ji; Modugno, Michele

    2003-06-01

    We study the expansion of an ultracold boson-fermion mixture released from an elongated magnetic trap, by using a scaling approach. We discuss in detail the role of the boson-fermion interaction on the evolution of the radial-to-axial aspect ratio of the condensate, and show that the latter depends crucially on the relative dynamics of the condensate and degenerate Fermi gas in the radial direction, which is characterized by the ratio between the trapping frequencies for fermions and bosons. The numerical solution of the scaling equations provides a reasonable agreement with the recent experiment [G. Roati et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 89, 150403 (2002)].

  9. Age-Related Macular Degeneration: Advances in Management and Diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    Yonekawa, Yoshihiro; Miller, Joan W.; Kim, Ivana K.

    2015-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common cause of irreversible visual impairment in older populations in industrialized nations. AMD is a late-onset deterioration of photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium in the central retina caused by various environmental and genetic factors. Great strides in our understanding of AMD pathogenesis have been made in the past several decades, which have translated into revolutionary therapeutic agents in recent years. In this review, we describe the clinical and pathologic features of AMD and present an overview of current diagnosis and treatment strategies. PMID:26239130

  10. Photon upconversion in degenerately sulfur doped InP nanowires.

    PubMed

    Mergenthaler, K; Lehmann, S; Wallentin, J; Zhang, W; Borgstrm, M T; Yartsev, A; Pistol, M-E

    2015-12-01

    Radiative recombination in degenerately n-doped InP nanowires is studied for excitation above and below the Fermi energy of the electron gas, using photoluminescence. Laser-induced electron heating is observed, which allows absorption below the Fermi energy. We observe photon upconversion where photo-excited holes recombine with high |k| electrons. This can be attributed to hole scattering to high |k|-values, and the temperature dependence of this process is measured. We show that hole relaxation via phonon scattering can be observed in continuous wave excitation luminescence measurements. PMID:26585229

  11. PCR Amplicon Prediction from Multiplex Degenerate Primer and Probe Sets

    SciTech Connect

    2013-08-08

    Assessing primer specificity and predicting both desired and off-target amplification products is an essential step for robust PCR assay design. Code is described to predict potential polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplicons in a large sequence database such as NCBI nt from either singleplex or a large multiplexed set of primers, allowing degenerate primer and probe bases, with target mismatch annotates amplicons with gene information automatically downloaded from NCBI, and optionally it can predict whether there are also TaqMan/Luminex probe matches within predicted amplicons.

  12. Suppression of Myoclonus in Corticobasal Degeneration by Levetiracetam

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Jae Wook; Lee, Jae Hyeok

    2014-01-01

    Myoclonus in corticobasal degeneration (CBD) has often been associated with severe and difficult to treat disabilities. Levetiracetam is a new antiepileptic agent with antimyoclonic effects. Herein, we present a 72-year-old woman with clinically probable CBD and with spontaneous rhythmic myoclonus in the right foot, which was markedly ameliorated through treatment with levetiracetam. The effect of levetiracetam was associated with the decreased amplitude of enlarged cortical somatosensory evoked potentials. This result suggests that the antimyoclonic effect of levetiracetam might be mediated through the suppression of increased cortical excitability. PMID:24926409

  13. [Diagnostic Criteria for Atrophic Age-related Macular Degeneration].

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Kanji; Shiraga, Fumio; Ishida, Susumu; Kamei, Motohiro; Yanagi, Yasuo; Yoshimura, Nagahisa

    2015-10-01

    Diagnostic criteria for dry age-related macular degeneration is described. Criteria include visual acuity, fundscopic findings, diagnostic image findings, exclusion criteria and classification of severity grades. Essential findings to make diagnosis as "geographic atrophy" are, 1) at least 250 ?m in diameter, 2) round/oval/cluster-like or geographic in shape, 3) sharp delineation, 4) hypopigmentation or depigmentation in retinal pigment epithelium, 5) choroidal vessels are more visible than in surrounding area. Severity grades were classified as mild, medium and severe by relation of geographic atrophy to the fovea and attendant findings. PMID:26571627

  14. Isotropic nonmagnetic flat cloaks degenerated from homogeneous anisotropic trapeziform cloaks.

    PubMed

    Han, Tiancheng; Qiu, Cheng-Wei

    2010-06-01

    We propose a novel kind of trapeziform cloak requiring only homogeneous anisotropic materials. Large-scale flat cloaks can be degenerated from the general trapeziform cloak with PEC inner boundary, and be realized by isotropic nonmagnetic materials for optical frequencies with controlled index profiles and improved invisibility. With the support of PEC inner boundary, large vehicles and objects of arbitrary shape can be concealed between the PEC and ground, and PEC can be firm by adding pillars in the cloaking space. Full-wave simulations validate the proposed cloaking concept, which is not only based on simple isotropic nonmagnetic materials but also realizable in practice. PMID:20588432

  15. Coupling and degenerating modes in longitudinal-torsional step horns.

    PubMed

    Harkness, Patrick; Lucas, Margaret; Cardoni, Andrea

    2012-12-01

    Longitudinal-torsional vibration is used and proposed for a variety of ultrasonic applications including motors, welding, and rock-cutting. To obtain this behavior in an ultrasonic step horn one can either, (i) couple the longitudinal and torsional modes of the horn by incorporating a ring of diagonal slits in the thick base section or, (ii) place helical flutes in the thin stem section to degenerate the longitudinal mode into a modified behavior with a longitudinal-torsional motion. This paper compares the efficacy of these two design approaches using both numerical and experimental techniques. PMID:22770885

  16. Effects of Vitreomacular Adhesion on Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Eui Chun; Koh, Hyoung Jun

    2015-01-01

    Herein, we review the association between vitreomacular adhesion (VMA) and neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Meta-analyses have shown that eyes with neovascular AMD are twice as likely to have VMA as normal eyes. VMA in neovascular AMD may induce inflammation, macular traction, decrease in oxygenation, sequestering of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and other cytokines or may directly stimulate VEGF production. VMA may also interfere with the treatment effects of anti-VEGF therapy, which is the standard treatment for neovascular AMD, and releasing VMA can improve the treatment response to anti-VEGF treatment in neovascular AMD. We also reviewed currently available methods of relieving VMA. PMID:26425354

  17. Degenerate stimulated parametric scattering in LiTaO(3).

    PubMed

    Odoulov, S; Belabaev, K; Kiseleva, I

    1985-01-01

    Degenerate nonlinear light scattering in LiTaO(3) caused by parametric forward four-wave mixing of waves with orthogonal polarization is reported. Scattered light is located on a cone whose apex angle is defined by the phase-matching condition. The photorefractive-type nonlinearity involved in this process is caused by the excitation of spatially oscillating photovoltaic currents directed normal to the optical axis and the subsequent formation of a volume space-charge field modulating the refractive index. PMID:19724336

  18. Hepatic encephalopathy coexists with acquired chronic hepatocerebral degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Feng-Zhen; Hou, Xuan; Zhou, Tie-Qiao; Chen, Si

    2015-01-01

    Hyperkinetic extrapyramidal syndrome is the typical clinical characteristic of acquired hepatocerebral degeneration (AHD), but is usually not observed with hepatic encephalopathy (HE). We present a case of AHD coexisting with HE. Both conditions were secondary to liver cirrhosis and hepatitis C virus infection. The brain MRI showed bilateral and symmetric high T1 signal-intensity in the globus pallidus, and diffuse high signal-intensity of the hemispheric white matter on T2-FLAIR images. As we usually neglect the existence of AHD, the diagnosis is often ignored, especially when it coexists with HE. This case highlights the need to distinguish irreversible AHD from HE. PMID:26166598

  19. Aetiology of spheroidal degeneration of the cornea in Labrador.

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, G J

    1981-01-01

    To determine the aetiology of spheroidal degeneration of the cornea (Labrador keratopathy), total population surveys were conducted in 5 communities in coastal Labrador and northern Newfoundland. For 4 years records were also kept on all clinic patients aged 40 or more throughout the region. Both methods gave a peak prevalence at latitudes 55 degrees--56 degrees north. The greatest severity and earliest age of onset occurred around the same latitudes. Of the proposed environmental causative agents only ultraviolet radiation, reflected from ice and snow, explains the distribution of the disease. The high cumulative UV dosage is due to the unique geographical and climatic features of the region. Images PMID:7236572

  20. [Glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration intricacy].

    PubMed

    Valtot, F

    2008-07-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of legal blindness among the elderly in Western nations. Age is also a well-known and well-evidenced risk factor for glaucoma. With increasing longevity and the rising prevalence of older people around the world, more and more patients will have glaucoma and AMD. Clinical evaluation of these patients still poses problems for clinicians. It is very important to order the right tests at the right time to distinguish glaucomatous defects from those caused by retinal lesions, because appropriate therapy has a beneficial effect on slowing or halting damage. PMID:18957915

  1. Familial spinocerebellar degeneration as an expression of adrenoleukodystrophy.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, T; Noda, S; Umezaki, H; Goto, I; Suzuki, S; Kitaguchi, T; Kuroiwa, Y

    1986-12-01

    A family with adrenoleukodystrophy and clinical manifestations of spinocerebellar degeneration was studied. Two adult male first cousins showed progressive limb and truncal ataxia, slurred speech and spasticity of the extremities. Brain CT scans demonstrated atrophy of the pons and cerebellum, in both cases. Very long chain fatty acids in plasma and erythrocyte membranes were elevated in the affected patients and intermediately increased in an aunt and the mother of one patient, thereby indicating homozygotes and carriers of adrenoleukodystrophy, respectively. This unusual type of adrenoleukodystrophy seems to be transmitted as an X-linked recessive trait. PMID:3468205

  2. Chemically reacting mixtures in terms of degenerated parabolic setting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mucha, P. B.; Pokorn, M.; Zatorska, E.

    2013-07-01

    The paper analyzes basic mathematical questions for a model of chemically reacting mixtures. We derive a model of several (finite) component compressible gas taking rigorously into account the thermodynamical regime. Mathematical description of the model leads to a degenerate parabolic equation with hyperbolic deviation. The thermodynamics implies that the diffusion terms are non-symmetric, not positively defined, and cross-diffusion effects must be strongly marked. The mathematical goal is to establish the existence of weak solutions globally in time for arbitrary number of reacting species. A key point is an entropy-like estimate showing possible renormalization of the system.

  3. Degenerate Bose-Fermi mixtures of rubidium and ytterbium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaidya, V. D.; Tiamsuphat, J.; Rolston, S. L.; Porto, J. V.

    2015-10-01

    We report the realization of a quantum degenerate mixture of bosonic 87Rb and fermionic 171Yb atoms in a hybrid optical dipole trap with a tunable, species-dependent trapping potential. 87Rb is shown to be a viable refrigerant for the noninteracting 171Yb atoms, cooling up to 2.4 105 Yb atoms to a temperature of T /TF=0.16 (2 ) while simultaneously forming a 87Rb Bose-Einstein condensate of 3.5 105 atoms. Furthermore we demonstrate our ability to independently tailor the potentials for each species, which paves the way for studying impurities immersed in a Bose gas.

  4. Genetics and molecular pathology of Stargardt-like macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Vasireddy, Vidyullatha; Wong, Paul; Ayyagaria, Radha

    2010-01-01

    Stargardt-like macular degeneration (STGD3) is an early onset, autosomal dominant macular degeneration. STGD3 is characterized by a progressive pathology, the loss of central vision, atrophy of the retinal pigment epithelium, and accumulation of lipofuscin, clinical features that are also characteristic of age-related macular degeneration. The onset of clinical symptoms in STGD3, however, is typically observed within the second or third decade of life (i.e., starting in the teenage years). The clinical profile at any given age among STGD3 patients can be variable suggesting that, although STGD3 is a single gene defect, other genetic or environmental factors may play a role in moderating the final disease phenotype. Genetic studies localized the STGD3 disease locus to a small region on the short arm of human chromosome 6, and application of a positional candidate gene approach identified protein truncating mutations in the elongation of very long chain fatty acids-4 gene (ELOVL4) in patients with this disease. The ELOVL4 gene encodes a protein homologous to the ELO group of proteins that participate in fatty acid elongation in yeast. Pathogenic mutations found in the ELOVL4 gene result in altered trafficking of the protein and behave with a dominant negative effect. Mice carrying an Elovl4 mutation developed photoreceptor degeneration and depletion of very long chain fatty acids (VLCFA). ELOVL4 protein participates in the synthesis of fatty acids with chain length longer than 26 carbons. Studies on ELOVL4 indicate that VLCFA may be necessary for normal function of the retina, and the defective protein trafficking and/or altered VLCFA elongation underlies the pathology associated with STGD3. Determining the role of VLCFA in the retina and discerning the implications of abnormal trafficking of mutant ELOVL4 and depleted VLCFA content in the pathology of STGD3 will provide valuable insight in understanding the retinal structure, function, and pathology underlying STGD3 and may lead to a better understanding of the process of macular disease in general. PMID:20096366

  5. Hydrodynamics in a Degenerate, Strongly Attractive Fermi Gas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thomas, John E.; Kinast, Joseph; Hemmer, Staci; Turlapov, Andrey; O'Hara, Ken; Gehm, Mike; Granade, Stephen

    2004-01-01

    In summary, we use all-optical methods with evaporative cooling near a Feshbach resonance to produce a strongly interacting degenerate Fermi gas. We observe hydrodynamic behavior in the expansion dynamics. At low temperatures, collisions may not explain the expansion dynamics. We observe hydrodynamics in the trapped gas. Our observations include collisionally-damped excitation spectra at high temperature which were not discussed above. In addition, we observe weakly damped breathing modes at low temperature. The observed temperature dependence of the damping time and hydrodynamic frequency are not consistent with collisional dynamics nor with collisionless mean field interactions. These observations constitute the first evidence for superfluid hydrodynamics in a Fermi gas.

  6. Degenerate nonlinear programming with a quadratic growth condition.

    SciTech Connect

    Anitescu, M.; Mathematics and Computer Science

    2000-01-01

    We show that the quadratic growth condition and the Mangasarian-Fromovitz constraint qualification (MFCQ) imply that local minima of nonlinear programs are isolated stationary points. As a result, when started sufficiently close to such points, an L1 exact penalty sequential quadratic programming algorithm will induce at least R-linear convergence of the iterates to such a local minimum. We construct an example of a degenerate nonlinear program with a unique local minimum satisfying the quadratic growth and the MFCQ but for which no positive semidefinite augmented Lagrangian exists. We present numerical results obtained using several nonlinear programming packages on this example and discuss its implications for some algorithms.

  7. ATF6 Is Mutated in Early Onset Photoreceptor Degeneration With Macular Involvement

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Mingchu; Gelowani, Violet; Eblimit, Aiden; Wang, Feng; Young, Marielle P.; Sawyer, Briana L.; Zhao, Li; Jenkins, Glen; Creel, Donnell J.; Wang, Keqing; Ge, Zhongqi; Wang, Hui; Li, Yumei; Hartnett, M. Elizabeth; Chen, Rui

    2015-01-01

    Purpose. Photoreceptor degeneration (PRD) is a genetically heterogeneous retinal disorder. Although a number of genes involved in PRD have been identified, their genetic basis remains unknown in a significant number of patients. In this study, we aimed to identify novel disease-causing genes of PRD. Methods. Comprehensive ocular examinations were performed in a 2-year-old patient diagnosed with early onset PRD. Retinal capture sequencing was performed to screen causative mutations in known retinal disease-causing loci. Whole-exome sequencing (WES) and a series of variant-filtering strategies were applied for identifying novel disease-causing genes. Retina ATF6 expression was confirmed by immunohistochemistry. RT-PCR was performed to identify ATF6 mRNA in the patient. Results. The patient showed typical PRD features, with macular involvement and ellipsoid zone irregularities. Results of retinal capture sequencing were negative. WES data led to identification of biallelic loss-of-function mutations in the ATF6 gene. The first variant generates a premature stop codon (NCBI accession no. NM_007348: c.1126C>T, p.R376*) and the second variant affects a splicing donor site (NM_007348: c.1533+1G>C). Sanger sequencing confirmed the 2 alleles are from 1 parent each. Both of the variants are extremely rare in the population. The splicing variant causes either intron inclusion or exon skipping in the patient, thus severely disrupting ATF6 functional domains. ATF6 is expressed in three neuronal cell layers of mouse retina. Conclusions. Our results support ATF6 as a novel disease-causing gene for PRD and suggest that disrupted protein quality control mechanisms may be a novel pathological mechanism underlying human retinal degeneration. PMID:26070061

  8. Inhibition of polyisoprenylated methylated protein methyl esterase by synthetic musks induces cell degeneration.

    PubMed

    Ayuk-Takem, Lambert; Amissah, Felix; Aguilar, Byron J; Lamango, Nazarius S

    2014-04-01

    Synthetic fragrances are persistent environmental pollutants that tend to bioaccumulate in animal tissues. They are widely used in personal care products and cleaning agents. Worldwide production of Galaxolide and Tonalide are in excess of 4500 tons annually. Because of their widespread production and use, they have been detected in surface waters and fish in the US and Europe. Consumption of contaminated water and fish from such sources leads to bioaccumulation and eventual toxicity. Since fragrances and flavors bear structural similarities to polyisoprenes, it was of interest to determine whether toxicity by Galaxolide and Tonalide may be linked with polyisoprenylated methylated protein methyl esterase (PMPMEase) inhibition. A concentration-dependent study of PMPMEase inhibition by Galaxolide and Tonalide as well as their effects on the degeneration of cultured cells were conducted. Galaxolide and Tonalide inhibited purified porcine liver PMPMEase with Ki values of 11 and 14 ?M, respectively. Galaxolide and Tonalide also induced human cancer cell degeneration with EC50 values of 26 and 98 ?M (neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells) and 58 and 14 ?M (lung cancer A549 cells), respectively. The effects on cell viability correlate well with the inhibition of PMPMEase activity in the cultured cells. Molecular docking analysis revealed that the binding interactions are most likely between the fragrance molecules and hydrophobic amino acids in the active site of the enzyme. These results appear to suggest that the reported neurotoxicity of these compounds may be associated with their inhibition of PMPMEase. Exposure to fragrances may pose a significant risk to individuals predisposed to developing degenerative disorders. PMID:22489002

  9. Application of Degenerately Doped Metal Oxides in the Study of Photoinduced Interfacial Electron Transfer.

    PubMed

    Farnum, Byron H; Morseth, Zachary A; Brennaman, M Kyle; Papanikolas, John M; Meyer, Thomas J

    2015-06-18

    Degenerately doped In2O3:Sn semiconductor nanoparticles (nanoITO) have been used to study the photoinduced interfacial electron-transfer reactivity of surface-bound [Ru(II)(bpy)2(4,4'-(PO3H2)2-bpy)](2+) (RuP(2+)) molecules as a function of driving force over a range of 1.8 eV. The metallic properties of the ITO nanoparticles, present within an interconnected mesoporous film, allowed for the driving force to be tuned by controlling their Fermi level with an external bias while their optical transparency allowed for transient absorption spectroscopy to be used to monitor electron-transfer kinetics. Photoinduced electron transfer from excited-state -RuP(2+*) molecules to nanoITO was found to be dependent on applied bias and competitive with nonradiative energy transfer to nanoITO. Back electron transfer from nanoITO to oxidized -RuP(3+) was also dependent on the applied bias but without complication from inter- or intraparticle electron diffusion in the oxide nanoparticles. Analysis of the electron injection kinetics as a function of driving force using Marcus-Gerischer theory resulted in an experimental estimate of the reorganization energy for the excited-state -RuP(3+/2+*) redox couple of ?* = 0.83 eV and an electronic coupling matrix element, arising from electronic wave function overlap between the donor orbital in the molecule and the acceptor orbital(s) in the nanoITO electrode, of Hab = 20-45 cm(-1). Similar analysis of the back electron-transfer kinetics yielded ? = 0.56 eV for the ground-state -RuP(3+/2+) redox couple and Hab = 2-4 cm(-1). The use of these wide band gap, degenerately doped materials provides a unique experimental approach for investigating single-site electron transfer at the surface of oxide nanoparticles. PMID:25668488

  10. Mechanical overloading causes mitochondrial superoxide and SOD2 imbalance in chondrocytes resulting in cartilage degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Koike, Masato; Nojiri, Hidetoshi; Ozawa, Yusuke; Watanabe, Kenji; Muramatsu, Yuta; Kaneko, Haruka; Morikawa, Daichi; Kobayashi, Keiji; Saita, Yoshitomo; Sasho, Takahisa; Shirasawa, Takuji; Yokote, Koutaro; Kaneko, Kazuo; Shimizu, Takahiko

    2015-01-01

    Mechanical stress and aging are major risk factors of cartilage degeneration. Human studies have previously reported that oxidative damage increased, while SOD2 protein was reciprocally downregulated in osteoarthritic degenerated cartilage. However, it remains unclear whether mitochondrial superoxide imbalance in chondrocytes causes cartilage degeneration. We herein demonstrate that mechanical loading promoted mitochondrial superoxide generation and selective Sod2 downregulation in chondrocytes in vivo and that mitochondrial superoxide inducer also downregulated Sod2 expression in chondrocytes in vitro. A genetically manipulated model revealed that Sod2 deficiency in chondrocytes also resulted in mitochondrial superoxide overproduction and dysfunction, thus leading to cartilage degeneration. Intra-articular injection of a permeable antioxidant effectively suppressed the mechanical loading-induced mitochondrial superoxide generation and cartilage degeneration in mice. Our findings demonstrate that mitochondrial superoxide plays a pivotal role in the development and progression of osteoarthritis, and the mitochondrial superoxide balance may therefore be a promising target for the treatment of cartilage degeneration. PMID:26108578

  11. The effects of claudin 14 during early Wallerian degeneration after sciatic nerve injury

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Leilei; Zhu, Yun; Xu, Xi; Li, Huaiqin; Guo, Weimin; Zhao, Qin; Yao, Dengbing

    2014-01-01

    Claudin 14 has been shown to promote nerve repair and regeneration in the early stages of Wallerian degeneration (04 days) in rats with sciatic nerve injury, but the mechanism underlying this process remains poorly understood. This study reported the effects of claudin 14 on nerve degeneration and regeneration during early Wallerian degeneration. Claudin 14 expression was up-regulated in sciatic nerve 4 days after Wallerian degeneration. The altered expression of claudin 14 in Schwann cells resulted in expression changes of cytokines in vitro. Expression of claudin 14 affected c-Jun, but not Akt and ERK1/2 pathways. Further studies revealed that enhanced expression of claudin 14 could promote Schwann cell proliferation and migration. Silencing of claudin 14 expression resulted in Schwann cell apoptosis and reduction in Schwann cell proliferation. Our data revealed the role of claudin 14 in early Wallerian degeneration, which may provide new insights into the molecular mechanisms of Wallerian degeneration. PMID:25657736

  12. Growth Factors and Anticatabolic Substances for Prevention and Management of Intervertebral Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Longo, Umile Giuseppe; Petrillo, Stefano; Franceschetti, Edoardo; Maffulli, Nicola; Denaro, Vincenzo

    2012-01-01

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is frequent, appearing from the second decade of life and progressing with age. Conservative management often fails, and patients with IVD degeneration may need surgical intervention. Several treatment strategies have been proposed, although only surgical discectomy and arthrodesis have been proved to be predictably effective. Biological strategies aim to prevent and manage IVD degeneration, improving the function and anabolic and reparative capabilities of the nucleus pulposus and annulus fibrosus cells and inhibiting matrix degradation. At present, clinical applications are still in their infancy. Further studies are required to clarify the role of growth factors and anticatabolic substances for prevention and management of intervertebral disc degeneration. PMID:25098367

  13. Resveratrol delays Wallerian degeneration in a NAD(+) and DBC1 dependent manner.

    PubMed

    Calliari, Aldo; Bobba, Natalia; Escande, Carlos; Chini, Eduardo N

    2014-01-01

    Axonal degeneration is a central process in the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Understanding the molecular mechanisms that are involved in axonal degeneration is crucial to developing new therapies against diseases involving neuronal damage. Resveratrol is a putative SIRT1 activator that has been shown to delay neurodegenerative diseases, including Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Alzheimer, and Huntington's disease. However, the effect of resveratrol on axonal degeneration is still controversial. Using an in vitro model of Wallerian degeneration based on cultures of explants of the dorsal root ganglia (DRG), we showed that resveratrol produces a delay in axonal degeneration. Furthermore, the effect of resveratrol on Wallerian degeneration was lost when SIRT1 was pharmacologically inhibited. Interestingly, we found that knocking out Deleted in Breast Cancer-1 (DBC1), an endogenous SIRT1 inhibitor, restores the neuroprotective effect of resveratrol. However, resveratrol did not have an additive protective effect in DBC1 knockout-derived DRGs, suggesting that resveratrol and DBC1 are working through the same signaling pathway. We found biochemical evidence suggesting that resveratrol protects against Wallerian degeneration by promoting the dissociation of SIRT1 and DBC1 in cultured ganglia. Finally, we demonstrated that resveratrol can delay degeneration of crushed nerves in vivo. We propose that resveratrol protects against Wallerian degeneration by activating SIRT1 through dissociation from its inhibitor DBC1. PMID:24252177

  14. The condition of regular degeneration for singularly perturbed systems of linear differential-difference equations.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooke, K. L.; Meyer, K. R.

    1966-01-01

    Extension of problem of singular perturbation for linear scalar constant coefficient differential- difference equation with single retardation to several retardations, noting degenerate equation solution

  15. Expression of NG2 proteoglycan in the degenerated intervertebral disc in dachshunds.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Hakiem, Mohammed; Yamashita, Ayuko; Atiba, Ayman; Okamura, Yasuhiko; Katayama, Masaaki; Youssef, Haroun; Isomura, Hiroshi; Uzuka, Yuji

    2016-02-01

    The pathogenesis of intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is not fully understood. The biomolecular signaling pathways involved in the IVD degeneration require further investigation. The aim of this study was to investigate the expression of NG2 proteoglycan in the degenerated IVD. IVD samples were obtained from 16 Dachshunds that were confirmed to have IVD herniation and subsequently underwent hemilaminectomy. The samples were subjected to histological and immunohistochemical (IHC) examinations. IHC revealed positive results for the expression of NG2 proteoglycan in all examined samples. The results showed the expression of NG2 proteoglycan by the degenerated IVDs. PMID:26300439

  16. Three dimensional electrostatic solitary waves in a dense magnetoplasma with relativistically degenerate electrons

    SciTech Connect

    Ata-ur-Rahman,; Qamar, A.; National Centre for Physics, QAU Campus, Shahdrah Valley Road, Islamabad 44000 ; Masood, W.; COMSATS, Institute of Information Technology, Park Road, Chak Shahzad, Islamabad 44000 ; Eliasson, B.

    2013-09-15

    In this paper, small but finite amplitude electrostatic solitary waves in a relativistic degenerate magnetoplasma, consisting of relativistically degenerate electrons and non-degenerate cold ions, are investigated. The Zakharov-Kuznetsov equation is derived employing the reductive perturbation technique and its solitary wave solution is analyzed. It is shown that only compressive electrostatic solitary structures can propagate in such a degenerate plasma system. The effects of plasma number density, ion cyclotron frequency, and direction cosines on the profiles of ion acoustic solitary waves are investigated and discussed at length. The relevance of the present investigation vis-a-vis pulsating white dwarfs is also pointed out.

  17. Coupled modes in magnetized dense plasma with relativistic-degenerate electrons

    SciTech Connect

    Khan, S. A.

    2012-01-15

    Low frequency electrostatic and electromagnetic waves are investigated in ultra-dense quantum magnetoplasma with relativistic-degenerate electron and non-degenerate ion fluids. The dispersion relation is derived for mobile as well as immobile ions by employing hydrodynamic equations for such plasma under the influence of electromagnetic forces and pressure gradient of relativistic-degenerate Fermi gas of electrons. The result shows the coexistence of shear Alfven and ion modes with relativistically modified dispersive properties. The relevance of results to the dense degenerate plasmas of astrophysical origin (for instance, white dwarf stars) is pointed out with brief discussion on ultra-relativistic and non-relativistic limits.

  18. Do Single-Degenerate Type Ia Supernovae Generally Lead to Normal Type Ia Supernovae?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Recent observational and theoretical progress has favored merging and helium-accreting sub-Chandrasekhar mass white dwarfs (WDs) in the double-degenerate and the double-detonation channels, respectively, as the dominant progenitors of normal Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). Thus the fate of rapidly-accreting Chandrasekhar mass WDs in the single-degenerate channel remains more mysterious then ever. In this talk, I will clarify the nature of ignition in Chandrasekhar-mass single-degenerate SNe Ia and demonstrate that the overwhelming majority of ignition events within Chandrasekhar-mass WDs in the single-degenerate channel are generally expected to be buoyancy-driven, and consequently lack a vigorous deflagration phase. I will show, using both analytic criteria and multidimensional numerical simulations, that the single-degenerate channel is inherently stochastic and leads to a variety of outcomes from failed SN 2002cx-like events through overluminous SN 1991T-like events. I will also demonstrate how the rates predicted from both the population of supersoft X-ray sources (SSSs) and binary population synthesis models of the single-degenerate channel can be brought into agreement with single-degenerate SNe Ia. I will further demonstrate that the single-degenerate channel contribution to the normal and failed 2002cx-like rates is not likely to exceed 1% of the total SNe Ia rate. I will conclude with a range of observational tests which will either support or strongly constrain the single-degenerate scenario.

  19. The brain basis of musicophilia: evidence from frontotemporal lobar degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Fletcher, Phillip D.; Downey, Laura E.; Witoonpanich, Pirada; Warren, Jason D.

    2013-01-01

    Musicophilia, or abnormal craving for music, is a poorly understood phenomenon that has been associated in particular with focal degeneration of the temporal lobes. Here we addressed the brain basis of musicophilia using voxel-based morphometry (VBM) on MR volumetric brain images in a retrospectively ascertained cohort of patients meeting clinical consensus criteria for frontotemporal lobar degeneration: of 37 cases ascertained, 12 had musicophilia, and 25 did not exhibit the phenomenon. The syndrome of semantic dementia was relatively over-represented among the musicophilic subgroup. A VBM analysis revealed significantly increased regional gray matter volume in left posterior hippocampus in the musicophilic subgroup relative to the non-musicophilic group (p < 0.05 corrected for regional comparisons); at a relaxed significance threshold (p < 0.001 uncorrected across the brain volume) musicophilia was associated with additional relative sparing of regional gray matter in other temporal lobe and prefrontal areas and atrophy of gray matter in posterior parietal and orbitofrontal areas. The present findings suggest a candidate brain substrate for musicophilia as a signature of distributed network damage that may reflect a shift of hedonic processing toward more abstract (non-social) stimuli, with some specificity for particular neurodegenerative pathologies. PMID:23801975

  20. Chronic Subdural Hematoma in the Aged, Trauma or Degeneration?

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Chronic subdural hematomas (CSHs) are generally regarded to be a traumatic lesion. It was regarded as a stroke in 17th century, an inflammatory disease in 19th century. From 20th century, it became a traumatic lesion. CSH frequently occur after a trauma, however, it cannot occur when there is no enough subdural space even after a severe head injury. CSH may occur without trauma, when there is sufficient subdural space. The author tried to investigate trends in the causation of CSH. By a review of literature, the author suggested a different view on the causation of CSH. CSH usually originated from either a subdural hygroma or an acute subdural hematoma. Development of CSH starts from the separation of the dural border cell (DBC) layer, which induces proliferation of DBCs with production of neomembrane. Capillaries will follow along the neomembrane. Hemorrhage would occur into the subdural fluid either by tearing of bridge veins or repeated microhemorrhage from the neomembrane. That is the mechanism of hematoma enlargement. Trauma or bleeding tendency may precipitate development of CSH, however, it cannot lead CSH, if there is no sufficient subdural space. The key determinant for development of CSH is a sufficient subdural space, in other words, brain atrophy. The most common and universal cause of brain atrophy is the aging. Modifying Virchow's description, CSH is sometimes traumatic, but most often caused by degeneration of the brain. Now, it is reasonable that degeneration of brain might play pivotal role in development of CSH in the aged persons. PMID:26885279

  1. Selective degeneration of oligodendrocytes mediated by reactive oxygen species.

    PubMed

    Griot, C; Vandevelde, M; Richard, A; Peterhans, E; Stocker, R

    1990-01-01

    The mechanism underlying demyelination in inflammatory canine distemper encephalitis is uncertain. Macrophages and their secretory products are thought to play an important effector role in this lesion. Recently, we have shown that anti-canine distemper virus antibodies, known to occur in chronic inflammatory lesions, stimulate macrophages leading to the secretion of reactive oxygen species (ROS). To investigate whether ROS could be involved in demyelination, dog glial cell cultures were exposed to xanthine/xanthine oxidase (X/XO), a system capable of generating O2-. This treatment resulted in a specific time-dependent degeneration and loss of oligodendrocytes, the myelin producing cells of the central nervous system. Initial degeneration was not associated with a decrease in viability of oligodendrocytes as judged by trypan blue and propidium iodide exclusion. Astrocytes and brain macrophages were not affected morphologically by this treatment. Further, an evaluation of the effect of several ROS scavengers, transition metal chelators and inhibitors of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase suggests that a metal dependent formation of .OH or a similar highly oxidizing species could be responsible for the observed selective damage to oligodendrocytes. PMID:1965721

  2. Diffusion Tensor Imaging in a Child with Hypertrophic Olivary Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Meoded, Avner; Poretti, Andrea; Ilica, A. Turan; Perez, Randall; Jallo, George; Burger, Peter C.; Huisman, Thierry A. G. M.

    2015-01-01

    Hypertrophic olivary degeneration (HOD) is caused by disruptive lesions affecting components of the GuillainMollaret triangle (GMT). We present conventional magnetic resonance and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) findings in a 6-year-old girl with HOD after surgery for a midbrain pilocytic astrocytoma. To our knowledge, this is the first dedicated DTI analysis of GMT in a child with HOD in the literature. In our patient, we found higher fractional anisotropy (FA) and axial diffusivity values of the inferior olivary nucleus (ION) and lower FA, but higher radial diffusivity (RD) values of all other GMT components compared to age-matched controls. Increased FA values of the ION may be explained by increased packing of white matter fibers. However, associated hyperintense T2 signal is contradictory and the association between increased FA values and hyperintense T2 signal remains unclear. Low FA and high RD values of the other GMT components likely reflect demyelination with axonal degeneration and correlate well with histopathological findings. PMID:23307661

  3. Mouse Models of Stargardt 3 Dominant Macular Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Barabas, Peter; Gorusupudi, Aruna; Bernstein, Paul S; Krizaj, David

    2016-01-01

    Stargardt type 3 macular degeneration is dependent on a dominant defect in a single gene, ELOVL4 (elongase of very long chain fatty acids 4). The encoded enzyme, ELOVL4, is required for the synthesis of very long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (VLC-PUFAs), a rare class of >C24 lipids. In vitro expression studies suggest that mutated ELOVL4(STGD3) proteins fold improperly, resulting in ER stress and formation of cytosolic aggresomes of wild type and mutant ELOVL4. Although a number of mouse models have been developed to determine whether photoreceptor cell loss in STGD3 results from depletion of VLC-PUFAs, aggresome-dependent cell stress or a combination of these two factors, none of these models adequately recapitulates the disease phenotype in humans. Thus, the precise molecular mechanism by which ELOVL4 mutation causes photoreceptor degeneration in mice and in human patients remains to be characterized. This mini review compares and evaluates current STGD3 mouse models and determines what conclusions can be drawn from past work. PMID:26427404

  4. Present and future treatment possibilities in macular degeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, E.; Wegner, A.; Pfeiler, T.; Mertz, M.

    2005-11-01

    Purpose: To discuss present and future treatment possibilities in different types of choroidal neovascularisation. Methods: Presented are angiographic- and OCT-findings in patients with macular degeneration of different origin. Choroidal neovascularisations, which are not likely to respond positively to established procedures like thermal laser coagulation or photodynamic therapy will be discussed. Results and conclusions: Present study-guidelines and new methods of pharmacological intervention are analysed in different patterns of macular degeneration. Conventional laser coagulation in the treatment of classic, extrafoveal CNV and photodynamic therapy of predominantly classic subfoveal CNV still represent a gold standard. There are new recommendations, loosening the tight criteria of the TAP and VIP-guidelines, which cover, for instance, wider visual acuity ranges and the treatment of juxtafoveally located choroidal neovascularisations. Positive findings in literature confirm the role of PDT in pathologic myopia and other non-AMD CNV. Studies about surgical procedures, like macula- or RPE-translocation after surgical removal or thermal laser destruction of the CNV are in progress and are expected to show promising results. Phase II/III studies will soon point out the effect of anti-VEGF agents. The application of intravitreal (triamcinolone) or peribulbar (anecortave acetat) steroids could be useful. The combination with surgical or laser techniques could bring further benefit to the patient.

  5. Testing the single degenerate channel for supernova Ia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parsons, Steven

    2014-10-01

    The progenitors of supernova Ia are close binaries containing white dwarfs. Of crucial importance to the evolution of these systems is how much material the white dwarf can stably accrete and hence grow in mass. This occurs during a short-lived intense phase of mass transfer known as the super soft source (SSS) phase. The short duration of this phase and large extinction to soft X-rays means that only a handful are known in our Galaxy. Far more can be learned from the underlying SSS progenitor population of close white dwarf plus FGK type binaries. Unfortunately, these systems are hard to find since the main-sequence stars completely outshine the white dwarfs at optical wavelengths. Because of this, there are currently no known close white dwarf binaries with F, G or early K type companions, making it impossible to determine the contribution of the single degenerate channel towards supernova Ia. Using the GALEX and RAVE surveys we have now identified the first large sample of FGK stars with UV excesses, a fraction of which are these illusive, close systems. Following an intense ground based spectroscopic investigation of these systems, we have identified 5 definite close binaries, with periods of less than a few days. Here we apply for COS spectroscopic observations to measure the mass and temperature of the white dwarfs in order to determine the future evolution of these systems. This will provide a crucial test for the single degenerate channel towards supernova Ia.

  6. Neuropsychological decline in frontotemporal lobar degeneration: a longitudinal analysis.

    PubMed

    Libon, David J; Xie, Sharon X; Wang, Xingmei; Massimo, Lauren; Moore, Peachie; Vesely, Luisa; Khan, Alea; Chatterjee, Anjan; Coslett, H Branch; Hurtig, Howard I; Liang, Tsao-Wei; Grossman, Murray

    2009-05-01

    Few studies have assessed whether the patterns of neuropsychological impairment in patients with different frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) subtypes remain distinct over the duration of their illness or devolve into a common, undifferentiated neuropsychological state. A longitudinal neuropsychological analysis was obtained over 100 months assessing executive control, language/naming, and visuoconstruction in 441 patients diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and four FTLD subtypes, i.e., a social comportment/dysexecutive (SOC/EXEC) disorder; progressive non-fluent aphasia (PNFA); semantic dementia (SemD); and corticobasal degeneration (CBD). Initial group differences on each measure were maintained over the duration of illness, including several double dissociations. For example, AD patients exhibited a decline in 'animal' fluency; PNFA patients had difficulty on tests of executive control, SemD maintained their impairment on tests of naming, and CBD had presented with performance on visuoconstructional tests. None of the group by neuropsychological task interactions evaluating longitudinal decline was significant, suggesting that performance does not converge onto a common subtype over time. These data indicate that distinct patterns of neuropsychological impairment are maintained longitudinally, reflecting the unique anatomic distribution of relative disease burden in AD and FTLD. PMID:19413447

  7. Quasi-degenerate perturbation theory using matrix product states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Sandeep; Jeanmairet, Guillaume; Alavi, Ali

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we generalize the recently proposed matrix product state perturbation theory (MPSPT) for calculating energies of excited states using quasi-degenerate (QD) perturbation theory. Our formulation uses the Kirtman-Certain-Hirschfelder canonical Van Vleck perturbation theory, which gives Hermitian effective Hamiltonians at each order, and also allows one to make use of Wigner's 2n + 1 rule. Further, our formulation satisfies Granovsky's requirement of model space invariance which is important for obtaining smooth potential energy curves. Thus, when we use MPSPT with the Dyall Hamiltonian, we obtain a model space invariant version of quasi-degenerate n-electron valence state perturbation theory (NEVPT), a property that the usual formulation of QD-NEVPT2 based on a multipartitioning technique lacked. We use our method on the benchmark problems of bond breaking of LiF which shows ionic to covalent curve crossing and the twist around the double bond of ethylene where significant valence-Rydberg mixing occurs in the excited states. In accordance with our previous work, we find that multi-reference linearized coupled cluster theory is more accurate than other multi-reference theories of similar cost.

  8. Quasi-degenerate perturbation theory using matrix product states.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Sandeep; Jeanmairet, Guillaume; Alavi, Ali

    2016-01-21

    In this work, we generalize the recently proposed matrix product state perturbation theory (MPSPT) for calculating energies of excited states using quasi-degenerate (QD) perturbation theory. Our formulation uses the Kirtman-Certain-Hirschfelder canonical Van Vleck perturbation theory, which gives Hermitian effective Hamiltonians at each order, and also allows one to make use of Wigner's 2n + 1 rule. Further, our formulation satisfies Granovsky's requirement of model space invariance which is important for obtaining smooth potential energy curves. Thus, when we use MPSPT with the Dyall Hamiltonian, we obtain a model space invariant version of quasi-degenerate n-electron valence state perturbation theory (NEVPT), a property that the usual formulation of QD-NEVPT2 based on a multipartitioning technique lacked. We use our method on the benchmark problems of bond breaking of LiF which shows ionic to covalent curve crossing and the twist around the double bond of ethylene where significant valence-Rydberg mixing occurs in the excited states. In accordance with our previous work, we find that multi-reference linearized coupled cluster theory is more accurate than other multi-reference theories of similar cost. PMID:26801016

  9. Presenting neuropsychological testing profile of autopsy-confirmed frontotemporal degenerations

    PubMed Central

    Yoshizawa, Hiroshi; Vonsattel, Jean Paul G.; Honig, Lawrence S.

    2015-01-01

    Background/Aims We aimed to investigate how neuropsychological test measures at presentation might differentiate frontotemporal degenerations (FTD) from Alzheimer disease (AD). Methods We compared autopsy-confirmed frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) and definite AD with Clinical Dementia Rating ≤1. Factor scores and t-values of each neuropsychological test measure were compared between FTLD and AD patients. Logistic regression analyses were applied to identify independent predictors within test measures for differentiation of FTLD from AD. Results Factor analyses showed that memory domain was more severely impaired in AD than in FTLD, whereas language and attention domain were more severely impaired in FTLD than in AD. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that Letter Fluency, Boston Naming Test, and delayed memory recall remained as independent predictors of FTLD compared to AD. However, test measures did not discriminate between FTLD-tau and FTLD-ubiqutin (FTLD-U). Conclusion We confirm that memory and language function tests discriminate between FTLD and AD. PMID:23949428

  10. Dwarf spheroidal galaxies as degenerate gas of free fermions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Domcke, Valerie; Urbano, Alfredo

    2015-01-01

    In this paper we analyze a simple scenario in which Dark Matter (DM) consists of free fermions with mass mf. We assume that on galactic scales these fermions are capable of forming a degenerate Fermi gas, in which stability against gravitational collapse is ensured by the Pauli exclusion principle. The mass density of the resulting con figuration is governed by a non-relativistic Lane-Emden equation, thus leading to a universal cored profile that depends only on one free parameter in addition to mf. After reviewing the basic formalism, we test this scenario against experimental data describing the velocity dispersion of the eight classical dwarf spheroidal galaxies of the Milky Way. We find that, despite its extreme simplicity, the model exhibits a good fit to the data and realistic predictions for the size of DM halos providing that mfsimeq 200 eV. Furthermore, we show that in this setup larger galaxies correspond to the non-degenerate limit of the gas. We propose a concrete realization of this model in which DM is produced non-thermally via inflaton decay. We show that imposing the correct relic abundance and the bound on the free-streaming length constrains the inflation model in terms of inflaton mass, its branching ratio into DM and the reheating temperature.

  11. Transverse phase shielding solitons in the degenerated optical parametric oscillator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clerc, Marcel G.; Coulibaly, Saliya; Garcia-Ñustes, Mónica A.; Zárate, Yair

    2015-11-01

    Localized structures in optics have attracted attention for their potential applications in telecommunications and information storage. In the present work, localized structures with non-uniform phase structure in the degenerate optical parametrical oscillator are reported and elucidated. Dissipative solitons with non-uniform phase structures in parametrically driven systems have been already observed in prototype models being found in two typical shapes: symmetrical and asymmetrical. In contrast, the phase structure in degenerate optical parametrical oscillator is always symmetrical, showing a pronounced bell-shaped phase. We show that the nonlinear saturation present in this physical system is responsible of a relaxation dynamics and this symmetry. Probing that real physical systems exhibit always this unique type of localized structure with phase structure. An adequate analytical description for the phase, based on a simple model, is achieved showing that such structure is controlled by the interplay between the detuning, the external pump and the losses of the cavity. Numerical simulations present quite agreement with theoretical predictions.

  12. Dwarf spheroidal galaxies as degenerate gas of free fermions

    SciTech Connect

    Domcke, Valerie; Urbano, Alfredo E-mail: alfredo.urbano@sissa.it

    2015-01-01

    In this paper we analyze a simple scenario in which Dark Matter (DM) consists of free fermions with mass m{sub f}. We assume that on galactic scales these fermions are capable of forming a degenerate Fermi gas, in which stability against gravitational collapse is ensured by the Pauli exclusion principle. The mass density of the resulting con figuration is governed by a non-relativistic Lane-Emden equation, thus leading to a universal cored profile that depends only on one free parameter in addition to m{sub f}. After reviewing the basic formalism, we test this scenario against experimental data describing the velocity dispersion of the eight classical dwarf spheroidal galaxies of the Milky Way. We find that, despite its extreme simplicity, the model exhibits a good fit to the data and realistic predictions for the size of DM halos providing that m{sub f}?200 eV. Furthermore, we show that in this setup larger galaxies correspond to the non-degenerate limit of the gas. We propose a concrete realization of this model in which DM is produced non-thermally via inflaton decay. We show that imposing the correct relic abundance and the bound on the free-streaming length constrains the inflation model in terms of inflaton mass, its branching ratio into DM and the reheating temperature.

  13. Muscle fibre breakdown in venom-induced muscle degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Harris, JB; Vater, R; Wilson, M; Cullen, MJ

    2003-01-01

    We studied the early stages of the degeneration of skeletal muscles using the venom of Notechis scutatus as the myotoxic agent. The venom was used at a dose equivalent to the LD50 in the mouse. There was no mortality amongst the rats. Electron microscopy was used to show the progressive hypercontraction of sarcomeres and the loss of alignment of myofibrils in individual muscle fibres. Between areas of hypercontraction sarcomeres were torn, shedding loosened myofilaments into the cytosol. Western blotting and Coomassie staining were used to compare the respective rates of loss of desmin, titin, actin, myosin and dystrophin. We showed that desmin and titin were the first proteins to be degraded with a time to 50% loss of approximately 1 h and 3 h, respectively. The loss of major contractile proteins, myosin and actin, was rather slower. The loss of dystrophin was also slower than the loss of desmin and titin. Early damage to the plasma membrane of the muscle fibre caused the cells to depolarize, probably promoting the hypercontraction of the sarcomeres, but actual loss of membrane was incomplete even at 24 h. We suggest that the early degradation of desmin and titin was responsible for the disaggregation of the sarcomeres; the liberated contractile proteins myosin and actin were shed into the cytosol, where they were degraded. Phagocytic cells that had invaded the degenerating muscle fibres were primarily involved in the clearance of damaged mitochondria. PMID:12739614

  14. Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging in patients with cerebellar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Tedeschi, G; Bertolino, A; Massaquoi, S G; Campbell, G; Patronas, N J; Bonavita, S; Barnett, A S; Alger, J R; Hallett, M

    1996-01-01

    Using proton magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging, we studied the cerebellum of 9 patients with cerebellar degeneration and of 9 age-matched normal control subjects. This technique permits the simultaneous measurement of N-acetylaspartate, choline-containing compounds, creatine/phosphocreatine, and lactate signal intensities from four 15-mm slices divided into 0.84-ml single-volume elements. Because patients with cerebellar degeneration often show substantial atrophy on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), we specifically chose to analyze the spectroscopic signals only from tissue that did not have an atrophic appearance on the MRI. The spectroscopic findings showed a significant reduction of N-acetylaspartate in all parts of the cerebellum, a significant correlation with MRI scores of cerebellar atrophy, and a significant correlation with clinical rating scores of cerebellar disturbance. Our method of analysis suggests the presence of a neurodegenerative process in cerebellar areas that do not appear to be atrophic on the MRI. Some limitations of proton magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging in the present study were related to the partial field inhomogeneity characteristics of the posterior fossa, the anatomical location of the cerebellum, and the particularly severe cerebellar atrophy in some of the patients. PMID:8572670

  15. Motor skill learning in patients with cerebellar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Topka, H; Massaquoi, S G; Benda, N; Hallett, M

    1998-06-30

    To explore the role of the cerebellum in learning a complex motor task, we studied nineteen patients with cerebellar degeneration and sixteen healthy subjects who attempted to improve their performance in generating a trajectory connecting five via points on a data tablet. Multijoint arm movements were performed at a constant total movement time, and spatial error was measured. Subjects performed 100 trials at a movement time of 3.5 s (slow movements), and another 100 trials at maximum speed (fast movements). With slow movements, patients and normal subjects reduced the error over trials to the same extent, but in patients, the rate of improvement was slightly slower. With fast movements, patients showed less improvement than normal subjects. When tested 24 h later, patients demonstrated significant retention of acquired skill and tended to improve more rapidly when performing both slow and fast movements than during the first session. We conclude that patients with cerebellar degeneration can exhibit almost normal performance in skill learning with slow movements, but with fast movements, their performance improves to a lesser extent. The problem may be difficulty in the refinement of motor execution, which is more of a requirement for fast movements than for slow ones. PMID:9702687

  16. Procedural learning in Parkinson's disease and cerebellar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Pascual-Leone, A; Grafman, J; Clark, K; Stewart, M; Massaquoi, S; Lou, J S; Hallett, M

    1993-10-01

    We compared procedural learning, translation of procedural knowledge into declarative knowledge, and use of declarative knowledge in age-matched normal volunteers (n = 30), patients with Parkinson's disease (n = 20), and patients with cerebellar degeneration (n = 15) by using a serial reaction time task. Patients with Parkinson's disease achieved procedural knowledge and used declarative knowledge of the task to improve performance, but they required a larger number of repetitions of the task to translate procedural knowledge into declarative knowledge. Patients with cerebellar degeneration did not show performance improvement due to procedural learning, failed to achieve declarative knowledge, and showed limited use of declarative knowledge of the task to improve their performance. Both basal ganglia and cerebellum are involved in procedural learning, but their roles are different. The normal influence of the basal ganglia on the prefrontal cortex may be required for timely access of information to and from the working memory buffer, while the cerebellum may index and order events in the time domain and be therefore essential for any cognitive functions involving sequences. PMID:8215247

  17. Hypertrophic Olivary Degeneration: A Neurosurgical Point of View.

    PubMed

    Carvalho, Carlos Henrique; Kimmig, Hubert; Lopez, William Omar Contreras; Lange, Manfred; Oeckler, Reinhard

    2016-01-01

    Hypertrophic olivary degeneration (HOD) is a rare form of transsynaptic degeneration characterized by hypertrophy of the inferior olivary nucleus situated in the olivary body, part of the medulla oblongata, representing a major source of input to the cerebellum. HOD typically results from focal lesions interrupting connections from the inferior olive within the dentato-rubro-olivary pathway, a region also known as the triangle of Guillain-Mollaret (TGM) (red nucleus, inferior olivary nucleus, and contralateral dentate nucleus). Clinically, HOD presents classically as palatal tremor and can include dentatorubral tremor and/or ocular myoclonus. The pathologic changes associated with HOD feature radiologic changes with the inferior olivary nucleus appearing larger and increasing its T2-weighted signal intensity on magnetic resonance images. HOD is commonly managed with pharmacotherapy but may require surgical intervention in extreme cases. HOD has been found to develop as a consequence of any injury that disrupts the TGM pathways (e.g., pontine cavernoma).These findings highlight the critical importance of a thorough knowledge of TGM anatomy to avoid secondary HOD. We present a patient who developed HOD secondary to resection of a tectal plate cavernous malformation and review the literature with an emphasis on the current knowledge of this disorder. PMID:26588253

  18. Prevalence and pattern of spinocerebellar degenerations in northeastern Libya.

    PubMed

    Sridharan, R; Radhakrishnan, K; Ashok, P P; Mousa, M E

    1985-12-01

    An intensive search over a two-year period for cases of cerebellar and spinocerebellar degenerations in Benghazi, Libya, made through polyclinics, university hospitals and a centre for the handicapped, revealed a total of 52 patients, among whom 30 were index cases; the remainder were detected on family study. Twenty-five patients lived in Benghazi, giving a crude prevalence of 4.8/100 000 population. There were 24 patients (10 families) with hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), 13 (9 families) with early onset cerebellar ataxia with retained tendon reflexes (EOCA), 3 with Friedreich's ataxia (FA), 5 (1 family) with late onset cerebellar ataxia (LOCA) with pigmentary retinal degeneration and autosomal dominant inheritance, 6 single cases of LOCA and 1 with ataxia telangiectasia. There were 14 families with definite autosomal recessive inheritance and only 2 with dominant transmission. The large family size (average of 6.2 children per married woman in the patient group) and the high rate of consanguineous marriages contribute to the high incidence of familial cases, especially those with autosomal recessive inheritance. Nerve conduction studies were normal in HSP and abnormal in EOCA and FA. Computed tomographic scans revealed atrophy of the brainstem and cerebellum in 3 cases of EOCA and 2 with LOCA. No indigenous forms of the disease were observed and the clinical features differed little from the descriptions in literature. However, the relative rarity of patients with FA, in comparison with other types of hereditary ataxias, is striking. PMID:4075075

  19. [Brain stem auditory evoked potentials in spinocerebellar degeneration].

    PubMed

    Illarioshkin, S N; Fedin, P A; Ivanova-smolenskaia, I A; Solov'ev, O I

    1992-01-01

    A study was made of brainstem auditory evoked potentials (BAEP) in 66 patients from 56 families with different forms of spinocerebellar degenerations (SCD). 27 patients with olivopontocerebellar degeneration (OPCD), 13 patients suffering from Friedreich's disease (FD), 10 patients with Pierre Marie's familial ataxia (PMFA), 6 patients with late onset cerebellar atrophy (LOCA), and 10 patients with other forms of SCD were examined. The changes in BAEP turned out extremely diverse which can be regarded as a manifestation of marked phenotypic pleomorphism common to SCD. The most considerable changes in BAEP were discovered in FD and OPCD, whereas the least marked ones in PMFA and LOCA. The character and degree of BAEP disorders reflect the spreading and gravity of degenerative alterations in the brain stem in different forms of SCD. The authors discuss the possibility of the use of BAEP for objective estimation of the gravity and spreading of the pathological process as well as of the electrophysiological control over its course in SCD patients. PMID:1333700

  20. Photon upconversion in degenerately sulfur doped InP nanowires

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mergenthaler, K.; Lehmann, S.; Wallentin, J.; Zhang, W.; Borgstrm, M. T.; Yartsev, A.; Pistol, M.-E.

    2015-12-01

    Radiative recombination in degenerately n-doped InP nanowires is studied for excitation above and below the Fermi energy of the electron gas, using photoluminescence. Laser-induced electron heating is observed, which allows absorption below the Fermi energy. We observe photon upconversion where photo-excited holes recombine with high |k| electrons. This can be attributed to hole scattering to high |k|-values, and the temperature dependence of this process is measured. We show that hole relaxation via phonon scattering can be observed in continuous wave excitation luminescence measurements.Radiative recombination in degenerately n-doped InP nanowires is studied for excitation above and below the Fermi energy of the electron gas, using photoluminescence. Laser-induced electron heating is observed, which allows absorption below the Fermi energy. We observe photon upconversion where photo-excited holes recombine with high |k| electrons. This can be attributed to hole scattering to high |k|-values, and the temperature dependence of this process is measured. We show that hole relaxation via phonon scattering can be observed in continuous wave excitation luminescence measurements. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/C5NR05472A

  1. Molecular Heterogeneity Within the Clinical Diagnosis of Pericentral Retinal Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Matsui, Rodrigo; Cideciyan, Artur V.; Schwartz, Sharon B.; Sumaroka, Alexander; Roman, Alejandro J.; Swider, Malgorzata; Huang, Wei Chieh; Sheplock, Rebecca; Jacobson, Samuel G.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To characterize in detail the phenotype and genotype of patients with pericentral retinal degeneration (PRD). Methods Patients were screened for an annular ring scotoma ranging from 3° to 40° (n = 28, ages 24–71) with kinetic perimetry. All patients had pigmentary retinopathy in the region of the dysfunction. Further studies included cross-sectional and en face imaging, static chromatic perimetry, and electroretinography. Molecular screening was performed. Results Genotypes of 14 of 28 PRD patients were identified: There were mutations in eight different genes previously associated with autosomal dominant or autosomal recessive RDs. Kinetic fields monitored in some patients over years to more than a decade could be stable or show increased extent of the scotoma. Electroretinograms were recordable but with different severities of dysfunction. Patterns of photoreceptor outer nuclear layer (ONL) loss corresponded to the distribution of visual dysfunction. Outer nuclear layer thickness topography and en face imaging indicated that the greatest disease expression was in the area of known highest rod photoreceptor density. Conclusions Molecular heterogeneity was a feature of the PRD phenotype. Many of the molecular causes were also associated with other phenotypes, such as maculopathies, typical retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and cone–rod dystrophy. The pericentral pattern of retinal degeneration is thus confirmed to be an uncommon phenotype of many different genotypes rather than a distinct disease entity. PMID:26393467

  2. Rare earth nanoparticles prevent retinal degeneration induced by intracellular peroxides:

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Junping; Patil, Swanand; Seal, Sudipta; McGinnis, James F.

    2006-11-01

    Photoreceptor cells are incessantly bombarded with photons of light, which, along with the cells' high rate of oxygen metabolism, continuously exposes them to elevated levels of toxic reactive oxygen intermediates (ROIs). Vacancy-engineered mixed-valence-state cerium oxide nanoparticles (nanoceria particles) scavenge ROIs. Our data show that nanoceria particles prevent increases in the intracellular concentrations of ROIs in primary cell cultures of rat retina and, in vivo, prevent loss of vision due to light-induced degeneration of photoreceptor cells. These data indicate that the nanoceria particles may be effective in inhibiting the progression of ROI-induced cell death, which is thought to be involved in macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa and other blinding diseases, as well as the ROI-induced death of other cell types in diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis, stroke and so on. The use of nanoceria particles as a direct therapy for multiple diseases represents a novel strategy and suggests that they may represent a unique platform technology.

  3. Expression of bioactive bone morphogenetic proteins in the subacromial bursa of patients with chronic degeneration of the rotator cuff

    PubMed Central

    Neuwirth, Jana; Fuhrmann, Renée AE; Veit, Amanda; Aurich, Matthias; Stonâns, Ilmars; Trommer, Tilo; Hortschansky, Peter; Chubinskaya, Susanna; Mollenhauer, Juergen A

    2006-01-01

    Degeneration of the rotator cuff is often associated with inflammation of the subacromial bursa and focal mineralization of the supraspinatus tendon. Portions of the supraspinatus tendon distant from the insertion site could transform into fibrous cartilage, causing rotator-cuff tears owing to mechanical instability. Indirect evidence is presented to link this pathology to ectopic production and secretion of bioactive bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) from sites within the subacromial bursa. Surgically removed specimens of subacromial bursa tissue from patients with chronic tears of the rotator cuff were analyzed by immunohistochemistry and reverse transcription-PCR. Bioactive BMP was detected in bursa extracts by a bioassay based on induction of alkaline phosphatase in the osteogenic/myogenic cell line C2C12. Topical and differential expression of BMP-2/4 and BMP-7 mRNA and protein was found in bursa tissue. The bioassay of C2C12 cells revealed amounts of active BMP high enough to induce osteogenic cell types, and blocking BMP with specific antibodies or soluble BMP receptors Alk-3 and Alk-6 abolished the inductive properties of the extract. Sufficient information was gathered to explain how ectopic expression of BMP might induce tissue transformation into ectopic bone/cartilage and, therefore, promote structural degeneration of the rotator cuff. Early surgical removal of the subacromial bursa might present an option to interrupt disease progression. PMID:16719933

  4. Lipid extraction attenuates the calcific degeneration of bovine pericardium used in cardiac valve bioprostheses.

    PubMed Central

    Rossi, M. A.; Braile, D. M.; Teixeira, M. D.; Souza, D. R.; Peres, L. C.

    1990-01-01

    Bovine pericardial bioprostheses frequently fail due to dystrophic calcification. Since (a) recent studies indicate that membrane-associated complexed acidic phospholipids play an important role in the process of both physiologic and pathologic calcification, and (b) cytoplasmic organelles and plasma membrane of interstitial cells seem to serve as initial sites of calcific degeneration of bioprosthetic bovine pericardial tissue, this investigation was undertaken to evaluate whether, and if so, to what extent, the mineralization of valve tissue could be attenuated by previous lipid extraction. Pretreatment of glutaraldehyde-preserved bovine pericardium with acidified sulphuric ether (pH 3.0-4.0) attenuated calcification significantly: 28 days after subcutaneous implantation in young rats the degree of mineral deposition was approximately equal to typical 7 days implants in this model. The mechanism of this beneficial effect is suggested to be due to partial extraction of tissue phospholipids, as demonstrated by electron microscopy, thus reducing the number of available sites for deposition of hydroxyapatite crystals. In addition, and importantly, the present results indicate that any attempt to reduce cardiac valve bioprosthesis mineralization will have to take into account the role of lipids and, particularly, the membranous phospholipids in the calcification mechanism. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 4 PMID:2331406

  5. Growth of injured rabbit optic axons within their degenerating optic nerve

    SciTech Connect

    Lavie, V.; Murray, M.; Solomon, A.; Ben-Bassat, S.; Belkin, M.; Rumelt, S.; Schwartz, M. )

    1990-08-15

    Spontaneous growth of axons after injury is extremely limited in the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). It is now clear, however, that injured CNS axons can be induced to elongate when provided with a suitable environment. Thus injured CNS axons can elongate, but they do not do so unless their environment is altered. We now show apparent regenerative growth of injured optic axons. This growth is achieved in the adult rabbit optic nerve by the use of a combined treatment consisting of: (1) supplying soluble substances originating from growing axons to be injured rabbit optic nerves, and (2) application of low energy He-Ne laser irradiation, which appears to delay degenerative changes in the injured axons. Two to 8 weeks after this treatment, unmyelinated and thinly myelinated axons are found at the lesion site and distal to it. Morphological and immunocytochemical evidence indicate that these thinly myelinated and unmyelinated axons are growing in close association with glial cells. Only these axons are identified as being growing axons. These newly growing axons transverse the site of injury and extend into the distal stump of the nerve, which contains degenerating axons. Axons of this type could be detected distal to the lesion only in nerves subjected to the combined treatment. No unmyelinated or thinly myelinated axons in association with glial cells were seen at 6 or 8 weeks postoperatively in nerves that were not treated, or in nerves in which the two stumps were completely disconnected. Two millimeters distal to the site of injury, the growing axons are confined to a compartment comprising 5%-30% of the cross section of the nerve. A temporal analysis indicates that axons have grown as far as 6 mm distal to the site of injury, by 8 weeks postoperatively.

  6. A novel platform for minimally invasive delivery of cellular therapy as a thin layer across the subretina for treatment of retinal degeneration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rotenstreich, Ygal; Tzameret, Adi; Kalish, Sapir E.; Belkin, Michael; Meir, Amilia; Treves, Avraham J.; Nagler, Arnon; Sher, Ifat

    2015-03-01

    Incurable retinal degenerations affect millions worldwide. Stem cell transplantation rescued visual functions in animal models of retinal degeneration. In those studies cells were transplanted in subretinal "blebs", limited number of cells could be injected and photoreceptor rescue was restricted to areas in proximity to the injection sites. We developed a minimally-invasive surgical platform for drug and cell delivery in a thin layer across the subretina and extravascular spaces of the choroid. The novel system is comprised of a syringe with a blunt-tipped needle and an adjustable separator. Human bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (hBM-MSCs) were transplanted in eyes of RCS rats and NZW rabbits through a longitudinal triangular scleral incision. No immunosuppressants were used. Retinal function was determined by electroretinogram analysis and retinal structure was determined by histological analysis and OCT. Transplanted cells were identified as a thin layer across the subretina and extravascular spaces of the choroid. In RCS rats, cell transplantation delayed photoreceptor degeneration across the entire retina and significantly enhanced retinal functions. No retinal detachment or choroidal hemorrhages were observed in rabbits following transplantation. This novel platform opens a new avenue for drug and cell delivery, placing the transplanted cells in close proximity to the damaged RPE and retina as a thin layer, across the subretina and thereby slowing down cell death and photoreceptor degeneration, without retinal detachment or choroidal hemorrhage. This new transplantation system may increase the therapeutic effect of other cell-based therapies and therapeutic agents. This study is expected to directly lead to phase I/II clinical trials for autologous hBM-MSCs transplantation in retinal degeneration patients.

  7. BMP-2 and BMP-2/7 Heterodimers Conjugated to a Fibrin/Hyaluronic Acid Hydrogel in a Large Animal Model of Mild Intervertebral Disc Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Peeters, Mirte; Detiger, Suzanne E.L.; Karfeld-Sulzer, Lindsay S.; Smit, Theo H.; Yayon, Avner; Weber, Franz E.; Helder, Marco N.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration is etiologically associated with low back pain and is currently only treated in severe cases with spinal fusion. Regenerative medicine attempts to restore degenerated tissue by means of cells, hydrogels, and/or growth factors and can therefore be used to slow, halt, or reverse the degeneration of the IVD in a minimally invasive manner. Previously, the growth factors bone morphogenetic proteins 2 and 7 (BMP-2, -7) were shown to enhance disc regeneration, in vitro and in vivo. Since BMPs have only a short in vivo half-life, and to prevent heterotopic ossification, we evaluated the use of a slow release system for BMP-2 homodimers and BMP-2/7 heterodimers for IVD regeneration. BMP growth factors were conjugated to a fibrin/hyaluronic acid (FB/HA) hydrogel and intradiscally injected in a goat model of mild IVD degeneration to study safety and efficacy. Mild degeneration was induced in five lumbar discs of seven adult Dutch milk goats, by injections with the enzyme chondroitinase ABC. After 12 weeks, discs were treated with either FB/HA-hydrogel only or supplemented with 1 or 5 μg/mL of BMP-2 or BMP-2/7. BMPs were linked to the FB/HA hydrogels using a transglutaminase moiety, to be released through an incorporated plasmin cleavage site. After another 12 weeks, goats were sacrificed and discs were assessed using radiography, MRI T2* mapping, and biochemical and histological analyses. All animals maintained weight throughout the study and no heterotopic bone formation or other adverse effects were noted during follow-up. Radiographs showed significant disc height loss upon induction of mild degeneration. MRI T2* mapping showed strong and significant correlations with biochemistry and histology as shown before. Surprisingly, no differences could be demonstrated in any parameter between intervention groups. To our knowledge, this is the first large animal study evaluating BMPs conjugated to an FB/HA-hydrogel for the treatment of mild IVD degeneration. The conjugated BMP-2 and BMP-2/7 appeared safe, but no disc regeneration was observed. Possible explanations include too low dosages, short follow-up time, and/or insufficient release of the conjugated BMPs. These aspects should be addressed in future studies. PMID:26543683

  8. Conduction model covering non-degenerate through degenerate polycrystalline semiconductors with non-uniform grain-boundary potential heights based on an energy filtering model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kajikawa, Y.

    2012-12-01

    We propose a new conduction model associated with thermionic emission of carriers over potential barriers at grain boundaries, which is applicable to non-degenerate through degenerate polycrystalline semiconductors. We first assume the grain-boundary potential barriers of a uniform height and derive an analytical expression of the electrical conductivity on the basis of an energy filtering model with fully incorporating the Fermi-Dirac distribution of carriers. We then introduce fluctuations of the potential barrier height as a Gaussian distribution into the model. It is shown that the non-linear curves of Arrhenius plots of electrical conductivity in various polycrystalline semiconductors (Si, CdS, CdSe, ZnO, WO3, In2Se3) in literature are well fitted using the model with the effect of fluctuations taken into account, being regardless of whether carriers are degenerate or non-degenerate, without assuming other conduction mechanisms such as tunneling and variable range hopping.

  9. The role of epigenetics in age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Gemenetzi, M; Lotery, A J

    2014-01-01

    It is becoming increasingly evident that epigenetic mechanisms influence gene expression and can explain how interactions between genetics and the environment result in particular phenotypes during development. The extent to which this epigenetic effect contributes to phenotype heritability in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is currently ill defined. However, emerging evidence suggests that epigenetic changes are relevant to AMD and as such provide an exciting new avenue of research for AMD. This review addresses information on the impact of posttranslational modification of the genome on the pathogenesis of AMD, such as DNA methylation changes affecting antioxidant gene expression, hypoxia-regulated alterations in chromatin structure, and histone acetylation status in relation to angiogenesis and inflammation. It also contains information on the role of non-coding RNA-mediated gene regulation in AMD at a posttranscriptional (before translation) level. Our aim was to review the epigenetic mechanisms that cause heritable changes in gene activity without changing the DNA sequence. We also describe some long-term alterations in the transcriptional potential of a cell, which are not necessarily heritable but remains to be defined in the future. Increasing understanding of the significance of common and rare genetic variants and their relationship to epigenetics and environmental influences may help in establishing methods to assess the risk of AMD. This in turn may allow new therapeutic interventions for the leading cause of central vision impairment in patients over the age of 50 years in developed countries. Search strategy We searched the MEDLINE/PubMed database following MeSH suggestions for articles including the terms: ‘ocular epigenetic mechanisms', ‘human disease epigenetics', and ‘age-related macular degeneration genetics'. The headline used to locate related articles in PubMed was ‘epigenetics in ocular disease', and to restrict search, we used the headlines ‘DNA methylation in age related macular degeneration', ‘altered gene expression in AMD pathogenesis'. A manual search was also based on references from these articles as well as review articles. PMID:25233816

  10. 3-acetylpyridine-induced degeneration in the adult ascidian neural complex: Reactive and regenerative changes in glia and blood cells.

    PubMed

    Medina, Bianca N S P; Santos de Abreu, Isadora; Cavalcante, Leny A; Silva, Wagner A B; da Fonseca, Rodrigo N; Allodi, Silvana; de Barros, Cintia M

    2015-08-01

    Ascidians are interesting neurobiological models because of their evolutionary position as a sister-group of vertebrates and the high regenerative capacity of their central nervous system (CNS). We investigated the degeneration and regeneration of the cerebral ganglion complex of the ascidian Styela plicata following injection of the niacinamide antagonist 3-acetylpyridine (3AP), described as targeting the CNS of several vertebrates. For the analysis and establishment of a new model in ascidians, the ganglion complex was dissected and prepared for transmission electron microscopy (TEM), routine light microscopy (LM), immunohistochemistry and Western blotting, 1 or 10 days after injection of 3AP. The siphon stimulation test (SST) was used to quantify the functional response. One day after the injection of 3AP, CNS degeneration and recruitment of a non-neural cell type to the site of injury was observed by both TEM and LM. Furthermore, weaker immunohistochemical reactions for astrocytic glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and neuronal βIII-tubulin were observed. In contrast, the expression of caspase-3, a protein involved in the apoptotic pathway, and the glycoprotein CD34, a marker for hematopoietic stem cells, increased. Ten days after the injection of 3AP, the expression of markers tended toward the original condition. The SST revealed attenuation and subsequent recovery of the reflexes from 1 to 10 days after 3AP. Therefore, we have developed a new method to study ascidian neural degeneration and regeneration, and identified the decreased expression of GFAP and recruitment of blood stem cells to the damaged ganglion as reasons for the success of neuroregeneration in ascidians. PMID:25484282

  11. Functional consequences of locus coeruleus degeneration in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Weinshenker, David

    2008-06-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common cause of cognitive impairment in older patients, and its prevalence is expected to soar in coming decades. Neuropathologically, AD is characterized by beta-amyloid-containing plaques, tau-containing neurofibrillary tangles, and cholinergic neuronal loss. In addition to the hallmark of memory loss, the disease is associated with other neuropsychiatric and behavioral abnormalities, including psychosis, aggression, and depression. Although cholinergic cell loss is clearly an important attribute of the pathological process, another well-described yet underappreciated early feature of AD pathogenesis is degeneration of the locus coeruleus (LC), which serves as the main source of norepinephrine (NE) supplying various cortical and subcortical areas that are affected in AD. The purpose of this review is to explore the extent to which LC loss contributes to AD neuropathology and cognitive deficits. PMID:18537547

  12. Progress Toward Effective Treatments for Human Photoreceptor Degenerations

    PubMed Central

    Stone, Edwin M.

    2015-01-01

    Mutations in several dozen genes have been shown to cause inherited photoreceptor degeneration in humans and it is likely that mutations in several dozen more will eventually be identified. Careful study of these genes has provided insight into the cellular and molecular mechanisms of human photoreceptor disease and has accelerated the development of a number of different classes of therapy including: nutritional supplementation, toxin avoidance, small- and large-molecule drugs, gene replacement, cell replacement, and even retinal prostheses. The retina is a very favorable system for the development of novel treatments for neurodegenerative disease because of its optical and physical accessibility as well as its highly ordered structure. With several forms of treatment for inherited retinal disease in or near clinical trial, one of the greatest remaining challenges is to educate clinicians in the appropriate use of genetic testing for identifying the individuals who will be most likely to benefit from each specific modality. PMID:19414246

  13. Age-related macular degeneration and the aging eye

    PubMed Central

    Ehrlich, Rita; Harris, Alon; Kheradiya, Nisha S; Winston, Diana M; Ciulla, Thomas A; Wirostko, Barbara

    2008-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is an ocular disease that causes damage to the retinal macula, mostly in the elderly. Normal aging processes can lead to structural and blood flow changes that can predispose patients to AMD, although advanced age does not inevitably cause AMD. In this review, we describe changes that occur in the macular structure, such as the retinal pigment epithelium and Bruchs membrane, with advancing age and in AMD. The role of genetics in AMD and age-related changes in ocular blood flow that may play a role in the pathogenesis of AMD are also discussed. Understanding the pathophysiology of AMD development can help guide future research to further comprehend this disease and to develop better treatments to prevent its irreversible central vision loss in the elderly. PMID:18982917

  14. Vibronic excitation dynamics in orbitally degenerate correlated electron system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nasu, Joji; Ishihara, Sumio

    2013-11-01

    The orbital-lattice coupled excitation dynamics in orbitally degenerate correlated systems is examined. We present a theoretical framework where both local vibronic excitations and superexchange-type intersite interactions are treated on an equal footing. We generalize the spin-wave approximation so as to take local vibronic states into account. The present method is valid from weak to strong Jahn-Teller coupling magnitudes. Two characteristic excitation modes coexist, a low-energy dispersive mode and a high-energy multipeak mode; these are identified as a collective vibronic mode and Flanck-Condon excitations in a single Jahn-Teller center modified by the intersite interactions, respectively. The present formalism covers vibronic dynamics in several orbital-lattice coupled systems.

  15. Complement factor H polymorphism and age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Albert O; Ritter, Robert; Abel, Kenneth J; Manning, Alisa; Panhuysen, Carolien; Farrer, Lindsay A

    2005-04-15

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a common, late-onset, and complex trait with multiple risk factors. Concentrating on a region harboring a locus for AMD on 1q25-31, the ARMD1 locus, we tested single-nucleotide polymorphisms for association with AMD in two independent case-control populations. Significant association (P = 4.95 x 10(-10)) was identified within the regulation of complement activation locus and was centered over a tyrosine-402 --> histidine-402 protein polymorphism in the gene encoding complement factor H. Possession of at least one histidine at amino acid position 402 increased the risk of AMD 2.7-fold and may account for 50% of the attributable risk of AMD. PMID:15761121

  16. Gene Therapy for MERTK-Associated Retinal Degenerations.

    PubMed

    LaVail, Matthew M; Yasumura, Douglas; Matthes, Michael T; Yang, Haidong; Hauswirth, William W; Deng, Wen-Tao; Vollrath, Douglas

    2016-01-01

    MERTK-associated retinal degenerations are thought to have defects in phagocytosis of shed outer segment membranes by the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), as do the rodent models of these diseases. We have subretinally injected an RPE-specific AAV2 vector, AAV2-VMD2-hMERTK, to determine whether this would provide long-term photoreceptor rescue in the RCS rat, which it did for up to 6.5 months, the longest time point examined. Moreover, we found phagosomes in the RPE in the rescued regions of RCS retinas soon after the onset of light. The same vector also had a major protective effect in Mertk-null mice, with a concomitant increase in ERG response amplitudes in the vector-injected eyes. These findings suggest that planned clinical trials with this vector will have a favorable outcome. PMID:26427450

  17. [Visual fixation features after treatment of exudative age macular degeneration].

    PubMed

    Surguch, V K; Surnina, Z V; Sizova, M V

    2011-01-01

    Changes of visual fixation in patients with choroidal neovascularitation (CNV) associated with age macular degeneration (AMD) after bevacizumab are studied. 45 patients (45 eyes) with active CNV treated with intravitreal bevacizumab were enrolled into the study. Visual fixation was studied before and 3-6 months after treatment using original method that included fundus foto and fluorescein angiography. Fixation relative to fovea and lesion was evaluated. Foveal fixation beyond lesion was found in 9%, foveal fixation within lesion--in 47%, extrafoveal fixation beyond lesion--in 18%, extrafoveal fixation within lesion--in 26% of patients. Changes of fixation localization after treatment was found in 24% patients. Examination of visual fixation may be useful for prognosis of anti-VEGF treatment efficacy in patients with CNV. PMID:21721271

  18. Intracorneal rings for the correction of pellucid marginal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez-Prats, Jose; Galal, Ahmed; Garcia-Lledo, Magdalena; De La Hoz, Fernando; Alió, Jorge L

    2003-07-01

    We report a case of Intacs(R) (KeraVision) implantation for the correction of pellucid marginal degeneration (PMD). Preoperatively, the patient's uncorrected visual acuity (UCVA) was 0.05, the best spectacle-corrected visual acuity (BSCVA) was 0.1, and the refraction was -2.00 -7.00 x 90 in the right eye. The flattest meridian (K1) measured 43.8@104 and the steepest meridian (K2), 51.3@14. Ultrasound pachymetry revealed a thin cornea of 420 micrometers. One month postoperatively, the UCVA was 0.2, the BSCVA was 0.5, and the refraction was -8.00 -7.00 x 50. Contact lens best corrected visual acuity was 0.9; 6 months postoperatively, it improved to 1.0. The use of Intacs to treat PMD seems to be viable and improves visual acuity. The residual error can be corrected with contact lenses. PMID:12900254

  19. Radiation Therapy for Neovascular Age-related Macular Degeneration

    SciTech Connect

    Kishan, Amar U.; Modjtahedi, Bobeck S.; Morse, Lawrence S.; Lee, Percy

    2013-03-01

    In the enormity of the public health burden imposed by age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), much effort has been directed toward identifying effective and efficient treatments. Currently, anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) injections have demonstrated considerably efficacy in treating neovascular ARMD, but patients require frequent treatment to fully benefit. Here, we review the rationale and evidence for radiation therapy of ARMD. The results of early photon external beam radiation therapy are included to provide a framework for the sequential discussion of evidence for the usage of stereotactic radiation therapy, proton therapy, and brachytherapy. The evidence suggests that these 3 modern modalities can provide a dose-dependent benefit in the treatment of ARMD. Most importantly, preliminary data suggest that all 3 can be used in conjunction with anti-VEGF therapeutics, thereby reducing the frequency of anti-VEGF injections required to maintain visual acuity.

  20. Direct intranigral injection of dopaminochrome causes degeneration of dopamine neurons.

    PubMed

    Touchette, Jillienne C; Breckenridge, Julie M; Wilken, Gerald H; Macarthur, Heather

    2016-01-26

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by progressive neurodegeneration of nigrastriatal dopaminergic neurons leading to clinical motor dysfunctions. Many animal models of PD have been developed using exogenous neurotoxins and pesticides. Evidence strongly indicates that the dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) are highly susceptible to neurodegeneration due to a number of factors including oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. Oxidation of DA to a potential endogenous neurotoxin, dopaminochrome (DAC), may be a potential contributor to the vulnerability of the nigrostriatal tract to oxidative insult. In this study, we show that DAC causes slow and progressive degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in contrast to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP(+)), which induces rapid lesions of the region. The DAC model may be more reflective of early stresses that initiate the progressive neurodegenerative process of PD, and may prove a useful model for future neurodegenerative studies. PMID:26704434

  1. Age-Related Macular Degeneration: Insights into Inflammatory Genes

    PubMed Central

    Ragazzo, Michele; Missiroli, Filippo; Borgiani, Paola; Angelucci, Francesco; Marsella, Luigi Tonino; Cusumano, Andrea; Novelli, Giuseppe; Ricci, Federico; Giardina, Emiliano

    2014-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects approximately 8.7% of elderly people worldwide (>55 years old). AMD is characterized by a multifactorial aetiology that involves several genetic and environmental risk factors (genes, ageing, smoking, family history, dietary habits, oxidative stress, and hypertension). In particular, ageing and cigarette smoking (including oxidative compounds and reactive oxygen species) have been shown to significantly increase susceptibility to the disease. Furthermore, different genes (CFH, CFI, C2, C3, IL-6, IL-8, and ARMS2) that play a crucial role in the inflammatory pathway have been associated with AMD risk. Several genetic and molecular studies have indicated the participation of inflammatory molecules (cytokines and chemokines), immune cells (macrophages), and complement proteins in the development and progression of the disease. Taking into consideration the genetic and molecular background, this review highlights the genetic role of inflammatory genes involved in AMD pathogenesis and progression. PMID:25478207

  2. The physical properties of double degenerate common proper motion binaries

    SciTech Connect

    Sion, E.M.; Oswalt, T.D.; Liebert, J.; Hintzen, P. Villanova Univ., PA Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne Steward Observatory, Tucson, AZ Nevada Univ., Las Vegas )

    1991-04-01

    Spectral types and spectrophotometry are presented for 21 double degenerate (DD) common proper motion binaries, along with estimates of their colors, absolute visual and bolometric magnitudes, and cooling ages. The oldest pairs in the sample are 9 x 10 to the 9th yr; the differential cooling ages range from 0.01 to 0.84. The median and mean separations of the DD pairs are 426 and 407 Au, respectively, both apparently smaller than the WD+MS values. The average UVW motions and velocity dispersions are significantly larger than the average velocities and dispersions associated with selected samples of single white dwarfs and MS+WD binaries when the latter are restricted to the same color/Mv range as the DD systems. This may be a result of the dynamical inflation of the velocity dispersion of DD systems due to their extremely ancient total stellar ages. 24 refs.

  3. Degenerate horizons, Einstein metrics, and Lens space bundles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunduri, Hari K.; Lucietti, James

    2014-12-01

    We present a new infinite class of near-horizon geometries of degenerate horizons, satisfying Einstein's equations for all odd dimensions greater than five. The symmetry and topology of these solutions is compatible with those of black holes. The simplest examples give horizons of spatial topology S3 ×S2 or the non-trivial S3-bundle over S2. More generally, the horizons are Lens space bundles associated to certain principal torus-bundles over Fano Kähler-Einstein manifolds. We also consider the classification problem for Einstein metrics on such Lens space bundles and derive a family which unifies all the known examples (Sasakian and non-Sasakian).

  4. Broadband degenerate OPO for mid-infrared frequency comb generation.

    PubMed

    Leindecker, Nick; Marandi, Alireza; Byer, Robert L; Vodopyanov, Konstantin L

    2011-03-28

    We present a new technique suitable for generating broadband phase- and frequency-locked frequency combs in the mid-infrared. Our source is based on a degenerate optical parametric oscillator (OPO) which rigorously both down-converts and augments the spectrum of a pump frequency comb provided by a commercial mode-locked near-IR laser. Low intracavity dispersion, combined with extensive cross-mixing of comb components, results in extremely broad instantaneous mid-IR bandwidths. We achieve an output power of 60 mW and 20 dB bandwidth extending from 2500 to 3800 nm. Among other applications, such a source is well-suited for coherent Fourier-transform spectroscopy in the absorption-rich mid-IR 'molecular fingerprint' region. PMID:21451655

  5. Topological Superradiant States in a Degenerate Fermi Gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Jian-Song; Liu, Xiong-Jun; Zhang, Wei; Yi, Wei; Guo, Guang-Can

    2015-07-01

    We predict the existence of a topological superradiant state in a two-component degenerate Fermi gas in a cavity. The superradiant light generation in the transversely driven cavity mode induces a cavity-assisted spin-orbit coupling and opens a bulk gap at half filling. This mechanism can simultaneously drive a topological phase transition in the system, yielding a topological superradiant state. We map out the steady-state phase diagram in the presence of an effective Zeeman field, and identify a critical tetracritical point beyond which the topological and the conventional superraidiant phase boundaries separate. The topological phase transition can be detected from its signatures in either the momentum distribution of the atoms or the variation of the cavity photon occupation due to the nontrivial feedback of the atoms on the cavity field.

  6. Bietti's tapetoretinal degeneration with marginal corneal dystrophy crystalline retinopathy.

    PubMed Central

    Welch, R B

    1977-01-01

    In 1937 Bietti reported a tapetoretinal degeneration with associated corneal deposits at the limbus. The hallmark of the disease was the crystalline characteristics of the retinal spots as well as those at the corneal limbus. Bagolini and Ioli-Spade in 1968 presented a 30 year follow-up on Bietti's cases and presented six additional cases. The present report delas with this entity in Orientals, a Chinese woman and a Japanese man. Corneal and conjunctival biopsy from the female patient revelaed a lipid deposition in both fibroblasts and epithelium. The term "crystalline retinopathy" has been added to the description of this entity since it defines the most characteristic feature of the syndrome. Images FIGURE 7 A FIGURE 7 B FIGURE 1 A FIGURE 1 B FIGURE 1 C FIGURE 2 A FIGURE 2 B FIGURE 2 C FIGURE 3 FIGURE 4 A FIGURE 4 B FIGURE 5 FIGURE 6 A FIGURE 6 B FIGURE 6 C FIGURE 8 PMID:306693

  7. New Approaches for Producing Quantum Degenerate Gases of Strontium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, Roger; Woehl, Germano, Jr.; Camargo, Francisco; Whalen, Joseph; Dunning, F. Barry; Killian, Thomas

    2015-05-01

    We investigate two novel methods for laser cooling strontium to quantum degeneracy. The first takes advantage of the isotope shifts and the narrow 1S0 -3P1 intercombination line (7.5 kHz at 689 nm) to produce an isotope selective optical dipole trap (ODT). We demonstrate this technique by sympathetically cooling 88Sr or 87Sr using 86Sr to produce quantum degenerate gases. The second uses an acousto-optic modulator driven with multiple RF frequencies to dynamically shape a far-off resonance ODT. This is easy to implement in existing traps and allows for optimized loading and evaporation tailored for each isotope. The simple setup has been applied in various atomic physics experiments, and we describe its application in strontium. Research supported by the AFOSR under grant no. FA9550-12-1-0267, the NSF under grants nos. 1301773 and 1205946, and the Robert A. Welch Foundation under grant no. C-0734.

  8. Lifespan maturation and degeneration of human brain white matter

    PubMed Central

    Yeatman, Jason D.; Wandell, Brian A.; Mezer, Aviv A.

    2014-01-01

    Properties of human brain tissue change across the lifespan. Here we model these changes in the living human brain by combining quantitative MRI measurements of R1 (1/T1) with diffusion MRI and tractography (N=102, ages 785). The amount of R1 change during development differs between white matter fascicles, but in each fascicle the rate of development and decline are mirror symmetric; the rate of R1 development as the brain approaches maturity predicts the rate of R1 degeneration in aging. Quantitative measurements of macromolecule tissue volume (MTV) confirm that R1 is an accurate index of the growth of new brain tissue. In contrast to R1, diffusion development follows an asymmetric time-course with rapid childhood changes but a slow rate of decline in old age. Together, the time-courses of R1 and diffusion changes demonstrate that multiple biological processes drive changes in white matter tissue properties over the lifespan. PMID:25230200

  9. Unraveling the mechanisms involved in motor neuron degeneration in ALS.

    PubMed

    Bruijn, Lucie I; Miller, Timothy M; Cleveland, Don W

    2004-01-01

    Although Charcot described amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) more than 130 years ago, the mechanism underlying the characteristic selective degeneration and death of motor neurons in this common adult motor neuron disease has remained a mystery. There is no effective remedy for this progressive, fatal disorder. Modern genetics has now identified mutations in one gene [Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1)] as a primary cause and implicated others [encoding neurofilaments, cytoplasmic dynein and its processivity factor dynactin, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)] as contributors to, or causes of, motor neuron diseases. These insights have enabled development of model systems to test hypotheses of disease mechanism and potential therapies. Along with errors in the handling of synaptic glutamate and the potential excitotoxic response this provokes, these model systems highlight the involvement of nonneuronal cells in disease progression and provide new therapeutic strategies. PMID:15217349

  10. p62/SQSTM1 analysis in frontotemporal lobar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Miller, Louise; Rollinson, Sara; Callister, Janis Bennion; Young, Kate; Harris, Jenny; Gerhard, Alex; Neary, David; Richardson, Anna; Snowden, Julie; Mann, David M A; Pickering-Brown, Stuart M

    2015-03-01

    Mutations in the gene p62/SQSTM1 have been reported as a relatively rare cause of frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). To establish whether this was the case for cases of FTLD from the United Kingdom, we sequenced the sequenced the entire open reading frame of this gene in a large cohort of patients. We identified 3 novel mutations in p62/SQSTM1 in 4 patients. One of these was a premature stop codon that removed the last 101 amino acids of the protein that presumably has a negative effect on protein function. Another mutation was also found in a case with a repeat expansion mutation in C9orf72 confirmed by Southern blot. These findings confirm a role of p62/SQSTM1 as a cause of FTLD. PMID:25433461

  11. Anatomic correlates of stereotypies in frontotemporal lobar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Josephs, Keith A; Whitwell, Jennifer L; Jack, Clifford R

    2008-12-01

    Stereotypies are common in frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) however the anatomical correlates of stereotypies are unknown. We therefore set out to compare patterns of grey matter volume loss in FTLD subjects with and without stereotypies. Subjects with a diagnosis of FTLD that met international consensus criteria were prospectively recruited and separated into those with and without stereotypies. MRI and cognitive measures were obtained and voxel-based morphometry was used to assess the patterns of grey matter volume loss in those with and without stereotypies, compared to a group of age- and gender-matched controls. Demographic and clinical features were similar between subjects with and without stereotypies. FTLD subjects with stereotypies had greater volume loss in the striatum compared to those without stereotypies. Those without stereotypies showed a more widespread and typical pattern of cortical frontotemporal loss. Stereotypies in FTLD are therefore associated with a greater proportion of striatal to cortical volume loss than those without stereotypies. PMID:17574708

  12. [The concept of chronicity and degeneration in neurology].

    PubMed

    Castaeda-Lpez, Gabriela

    2006-01-01

    Chronic degenerative diseases hold a special place in current medicine due to the impact they have in the patient, the familiar and medical environment, and by its social, financial and work related repercussions. Even though medical literature includes numerous scientific writings that approach diverse aspects of these diseases, just a few of them deal with historical or conceptual questions. Following the historical evolution that medical language has undergone will allow us to approach and to study in depth both scientific and medical knowledge. The aim of this study was analyze, from a historical perspective, how two concepts: chronic and degeneration, that have a single origin, are used differently and have a different meaning, nowadays have been combined to describe diseases with an underlying biological process, generally known as degenerative, and which in addition share a temporal condition. In this sense chronic degenerative diseases offer medicine new challenges and different ways to approach them. PMID:16711552

  13. Condensing Magnons in a Degenerate Ferromagnetic Spinor Bose Gas.

    PubMed

    Fang, Fang; Olf, Ryan; Wu, Shun; Kadau, Holger; Stamper-Kurn, Dan M

    2016-03-01

    We observe the quasicondensation of magnon excitations within an F=1 ^{87}Rb spinor Bose-Einstein condensed gas. Magnons are pumped into a ferromagnetically ordered gas, allowed to equilibrate to a nondegenerate distribution, and then cooled evaporatively at near-constant net longitudinal magnetization, whereupon they condense. The critical magnon number, spatial distribution, and momentum distribution indicate that magnons condense in a potential that is uniform within the volume of the ferromagnetic condensate. The macroscopic transverse magnetization produced by the degenerate magnon gas remains inhomogeneous within the ∼10  s equilibration time accessed in our experiment, and includes signatures of Mermin-Ho spin textures that appear as phase singularities in the magnon quasicondensate wave function. PMID:26991184

  14. The physical properties of double degenerate common proper motion binaries

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sion, Edward M.; Oswalt, Terry D.; Liebert, James; Hintzen, Paul

    1991-01-01

    Spectral types and spectrophotometry are presented for 21 double degenerate (DD) common proper motion binaries, along with estimates of their colors, absolute visual and bolometric magnitudes, and cooling ages. The oldest pairs in the sample are 9 x 10 to the 9th yr; the differential cooling ages range from 0.01 to 0.84. The median and mean separations of the DD pairs are 426 and 407 Au, respectively, both apparently smaller than the WD+MS values. The average UVW motions and velocity dispersions are significantly larger than the average velocities and dispersions associated with selected samples of single white dwarfs and MS+WD binaries when the latter are restricted to the same color/Mv range as the DD systems. This may be a result of the dynamical inflation of the velocity dispersion of DD systems due to their extremely ancient total stellar ages.

  15. Speech and language findings associated with paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration.

    PubMed

    Paslawski, Teresa; Duffy, Joseph R; Vernino, Steven

    2005-08-01

    Paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration (PCD) is an autoimmune disease that can be associated with cancer of the breast, lung, and ovary. The clinical presentation of PCD commonly includes ataxia, visual disturbances, and dysarthria. The speech disturbances associated with PCD have not been well characterized, despite general acceptance that dysarthria is often part of the initial presentation. A retrospective study was conducted of the speech, language, and swallowing concerns of patients with PCD evaluated at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, between 1990 and 2001. Prospective speech and language assessments were then conducted with 5 patients who had PCD. While ataxic dysarthria was the most common speech diagnosis, a spastic component was recognized frequently enough to suggest that the subacute (days to weeks) emergence and progression of an ataxic or mixed ataxic-spastic dysarthria in the setting of a more diffuse cerebellar ataxia should raise suspicions about PCD and justify further investigation of a possible immune-related etiology. PMID:16229671

  16. Experiments with Ultracold Quantum-degenerate Fermionic Lithium Atoms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ketterle, Wolfgang

    2003-01-01

    Experimental methods of laser and evaporative cooling, used in the production of atomic Bose-Einstein condensates have recently been extended to realize quantum degeneracy in trapped Fermi gases. Fermi gases are a new rich system to explore the implications of Pauli exclusion on scattering properties of the system, and ultimately fermionic superfluidity. We have produced a new macroscopic quantum system, in which a degenerate Li-6 Fermi gas coexists with a large and stable Na-23 BEC. This was accomplished using inter-species sympathetic cooling of fermionic 6Li in a thermal bath of bosonic Na-23. We have achieved high numbers of both fermions (less than 10(exp 5) and bosons (less than 10(exp 6), and Li-6 quantum degeneracy corresponding to one half of the Fermi temperature. This is the first time that a Fermi sea was produced with a condensate as a "refrigerator".

  17. Adrenal Cortical Degeneration and Regeneration Following Administration of DDD

    PubMed Central

    Powers, J. M.; Hennigar, G. R.; Grooms, G.; Nichols, J.

    1974-01-01

    Degeneration and regeneration of canine adrenal cortical cells following DDD administration are described. The degenerative phase is rapid in onset and dose related. It is morphologically characterized by profound cytoplasmic vacuolation due to severe mitochondrial damage, disruption of the smooth endoplasmic reticulum, autolysosomal response and lipid accumulation. Toxic necrosis with a mononuclear cell reaction and fibrosis also occurs. The regenerative phase consists of centripetal cellular regeneration, cellular repair and some residual damage. Several of the ultrastructural and biochemical findings are discussed in relation to the pertinent literature. ImagesFig 6Fig 7Fig 8Fig 9Fig 10Fig 1Fig 2Fig 3Fig 4Fig 11Fig 12Fig 13Fig 14Fig 5 PMID:4825614

  18. Topological Superradiant States in a Degenerate Fermi Gas.

    PubMed

    Pan, Jian-Song; Liu, Xiong-Jun; Zhang, Wei; Yi, Wei; Guo, Guang-Can

    2015-07-24

    We predict the existence of a topological superradiant state in a two-component degenerate Fermi gas in a cavity. The superradiant light generation in the transversely driven cavity mode induces a cavity-assisted spin-orbit coupling and opens a bulk gap at half filling. This mechanism can simultaneously drive a topological phase transition in the system, yielding a topological superradiant state. We map out the steady-state phase diagram in the presence of an effective Zeeman field, and identify a critical tetracritical point beyond which the topological and the conventional superraidiant phase boundaries separate. The topological phase transition can be detected from its signatures in either the momentum distribution of the atoms or the variation of the cavity photon occupation due to the nontrivial feedback of the atoms on the cavity field. PMID:26252692

  19. Radiative neutrino mass model with degenerate right-handed neutrinos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kashiwase, Shoichi; Suematsu, Daijiro

    2016-03-01

    The radiative neutrino mass model can relate neutrino masses and dark matter at a TeV scale. If we apply this model to thermal leptogenesis, we need to consider resonant leptogenesis at that scale. It requires both finely degenerate masses for the right-handed neutrinos and a tiny neutrino Yukawa coupling. We propose an extension of the model with a U(1) gauge symmetry, in which these conditions are shown to be simultaneously realized through a TeV scale symmetry breaking. Moreover, this extension can bring about a small quartic scalar coupling between the Higgs doublet scalar and an inert doublet scalar which characterizes the radiative neutrino mass generation. It also is the origin of the Z_2 symmetry which guarantees the stability of dark matter. Several assumptions which are independently supposed in the original model are closely connected through this extension.

  20. Pharmacogenetics and nutritional supplementation in age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Hampton, Blake M; Kovach, Jaclyn L; Schwartz, Stephen G

    2015-01-01

    The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) recommended treatment with antioxidants plus zinc in patients with intermediate or advanced age-related macular degeneration in order to reduce progression risks. Recent pharmacogenetic studies have reported differences in treatment outcomes with respect to variants in genes for CFH and ARMS2, although the treatment recommendations based on these differences are controversial. Different retrospective analyses of subsets of patients from the same AREDS trial have drawn different conclusions. The practicing clinician, who is not an expert on genetics, clinical trial design, or statistical analysis, may be uncertain how to interpret these results. Based on the balance of the available literature, we suggest not changing established practice recommendations until additional evidence from clinical trials becomes available. PMID:26028959

  1. Nonlinear positron-acoustic waves in fully relativistic degenerate plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hossen, M. A.; Mamun, A. A.

    2016-03-01

    The nonlinear positron-acoustic (PA) waves propagating in a fully relativistic electron–positron–ion (EPI) plasma (containing degenerate electrons and positrons, and immobile heavy ions) have been theoretically investigated. A fully relativistic hydrodynamic model, which is consistent with the relativistic principle has been used, and the reductive perturbation method is employed to derive the dynamical Korteweg–de Vries equation. The dynamics of electrons as well as positrons, and the presence of immobile heavy ions are taken into account. It is found that the effects of relativistic degeneracy of electrons and positrons, static heavy ions, plasma particles velocity, enthalpy, etc have significantly modified the basic properties of the PA solitary waves propagating in the fully relativistic EPI plasmas. The application of the results of our present work in astrophysical compact objects such as white dwarfs and neutron stars, etc are briefly discussed.

  2. Condensing Magnons in a Degenerate Ferromagnetic Spinor Bose Gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fang, Fang; Olf, Ryan; Wu, Shun; Kadau, Holger; Stamper-Kurn, Dan M.

    2016-03-01

    We observe the quasicondensation of magnon excitations within an F =1 87Rb spinor Bose-Einstein condensed gas. Magnons are pumped into a ferromagnetically ordered gas, allowed to equilibrate to a nondegenerate distribution, and then cooled evaporatively at near-constant net longitudinal magnetization, whereupon they condense. The critical magnon number, spatial distribution, and momentum distribution indicate that magnons condense in a potential that is uniform within the volume of the ferromagnetic condensate. The macroscopic transverse magnetization produced by the degenerate magnon gas remains inhomogeneous within the ˜10 s equilibration time accessed in our experiment, and includes signatures of Mermin-Ho spin textures that appear as phase singularities in the magnon quasicondensate wave function.

  3. Gene-Diet Interactions in Age-Related Macular Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Rowan, Sheldon; Taylor, Allen

    2016-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a prevalent blinding disease, accounting for roughly 50% of blindness in developed nations. Very significant advances have been made in terms of discovering genetic susceptibilities to AMD as well as dietary risk factors. To date, nutritional supplementation is the only available treatment option for the dry form of the disease known to slow progression of AMD. Despite an excellent understanding of genes and nutrition in AMD, there is remarkably little known about gene-diet interactions that may identify efficacious approaches to treat individuals. This review will summarize our current understanding of gene-diet interactions in AMD with a focus on animal models and human epidemiological studies. PMID:26427399

  4. Nutritional supplements in age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Schmidl, Doreen; Garhöfer, Gerhard; Schmetterer, Leopold

    2015-03-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most frequent cause of blindness in the Western World. While with new therapies that are directed towards vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), a potentially efficient treatment option for the wet form of the disease has been introduced, a therapeutic regimen for dry AMD is still lacking. There is evidence from several studies that oral intake of supplements is beneficial in preventing progression of the disease. Several formulations of micronutrients are currently available. The present review focuses on the role of supplements in the treatment and prevention of AMD and sums up the current knowledge about the most frequently used micronutrients. In addition, regulatory issues are discussed, and future directions for the role of supplementation in AMD are highlighted. PMID:25586104

  5. Age-related macular degeneration: insights into inflammatory genes.

    PubMed

    Cascella, Raffaella; Ragazzo, Michele; Strafella, Claudia; Missiroli, Filippo; Borgiani, Paola; Angelucci, Francesco; Marsella, Luigi Tonino; Cusumano, Andrea; Novelli, Giuseppe; Ricci, Federico; Giardina, Emiliano

    2014-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects approximately 8.7% of elderly people worldwide (>55 years old). AMD is characterized by a multifactorial aetiology that involves several genetic and environmental risk factors (genes, ageing, smoking, family history, dietary habits, oxidative stress, and hypertension). In particular, ageing and cigarette smoking (including oxidative compounds and reactive oxygen species) have been shown to significantly increase susceptibility to the disease. Furthermore, different genes (CFH, CFI, C2, C3, IL-6, IL-8, and ARMS2) that play a crucial role in the inflammatory pathway have been associated with AMD risk. Several genetic and molecular studies have indicated the participation of inflammatory molecules (cytokines and chemokines), immune cells (macrophages), and complement proteins in the development and progression of the disease. Taking into consideration the genetic and molecular background, this review highlights the genetic role of inflammatory genes involved in AMD pathogenesis and progression. PMID:25478207

  6. Comparative and quantitative proteomic analysis of normal and degenerated human annulus fibrosus cells.

    PubMed

    Ye, Dongping; Liang, Weiguo; Dai, Libing; Zhou, Longqiang; Yao, Yicun; Zhong, Xin; Chen, Honghui; Xu, Jiake

    2015-05-01

    Degeneration of the intervertebral disc (IVD) is a major chronic medical condition associated with back pain. To better understand the pathogenesis of IVD degeneration, we performed comparative and quantitative proteomic analyses of normal and degenerated human annulus fibrosus (AF) cells and identified proteins that are differentially expressed between them. Annulus fibrosus cells were isolated and cultured from patients with lumbar disc herniation (the experimental group, degenerated AF cells) and scoliosis patients who underwent orthopaedic surgery (the control group, normal AF cells). Comparative proteomic analyses of normal and degenerated cultured AF cells were carried out using 2-D electrophoresis, mass spectrometric analyses, and database searching. Quantitative analyses of silver-stained 2-D electrophoresis gels of normal and degenerated cultured AF cells identified 10 protein spots that showed the most altered differential expression levels between the two groups. Among these, three proteins were decreased, including heat shock cognate 71-kDa protein, glucose-6-phosphate 1-dehydrogenase, and protocadherin-23, whereas seven proteins were increased, including guanine nucleotide-binding protein G(i) subunit ?-2, superoxide dismutase, transmembrane protein 51, adenosine receptor A3, 26S protease regulatory subunit 8, lipid phosphate phosphatase-related protein, and fatty acyl-crotonic acid reductase 1. These differentially expressed proteins might be involved in the pathophysiological process of IVD degeneration and have potential values as biomarkers of the degeneration of IVD. PMID:25739836

  7. Association of Abdominal Obesity with Lumbar Disc Degeneration A Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study

    PubMed Central

    Takatalo, Jani; Karppinen, Jaro; Taimela, Simo; Niinimki, Jaakko; Laitinen, Jaana; Sequeiros, Roberto Blanco; Samartzis, Dino; Korpelainen, Raija; Nyh, Simo; Remes, Jouko; Tervonen, Osmo

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To evaluate whether midsagittal (abdominal) obesity in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), waist circumference (WC) and body fat percentage are associated with lumbar disc degeneration in early adulthood. Methods We obtained the lumbar MRI (1.5-T scanner) of 325 females and 233 males at a mean age of 21 years. Lumbar disc degeneration was evaluated using Pfirrmann classification. We analysed the associations of MRI measures of obesity (abdominal diameter (AD), sagittal diameter (SAD), ventral subcutaneous thickness (VST), and dorsal subcutaneous thickness (DST)), WC and body fat percentage with disc degeneration sum scores using ordinal logistic regression. Results A total of 155 (48%) females and 147 (63%) males had disc degeneration. AD and SAD were associated with a disc degeneration sum score of ?3 compared to disc degeneration sum score of 02 (OR 1.67; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.202.33 and OR 1.40; 95% CI 1.121.75, respectively) among males, but we found no association among females. WC was also associated with disc degeneration among males (OR 1.03 per one cm; 95% CI 1.001.05), but not among females. Conclusion Measures of abdominal obesity in MRI and waist circumference were associated with disc degeneration among 21-year-old males. PMID:23418543

  8. Fibroid degeneration in a postmenopausal woman presenting as an acute abdomen

    PubMed Central

    Shrestha, Rajesh; Khanal, Raju; Aryal, Madan Raj; Pathak, Ranjan; Karmacharya, Paras; Naqi, Muniba; Murukutla, Srujitha; Bhatt, Vijaya Raj; Gottesman, Aaron

    2015-01-01

    Uterine fibroid, one of the most common tumors in women, is estrogen dependent, which commonly regresses after menopause. Fibroid degeneration after menopause, therefore, is rare. Here the authors report a case of 56-year-old postmenopausal woman who presented with acute abdominal pain, low grade fever, and leukocytosis as a result of fibroid degeneration. PMID:25656665

  9. The role of autophagy in axonal degeneration of the optic nerve.

    PubMed

    Koch, Jan Christoph; Lingor, Paul

    2016-03-01

    Different pathological conditions including glaucoma, optic neuritis, hereditary optic atrophy and traumatic injury lead to a degeneration of retinal ganglion cell axons in the optic nerve. Besides this clinical relevance, several experimental models employ the optic nerve as a model system to examine general mechanisms of axonal degeneration in the central nervous system. Several experimental studies have demonstrated that an activation of autophagy is a prominent feature of axonal degeneration in the optic nerve independent of the underlying pathological condition. However, the function of autophagy in axonal degeneration remains still unclear. Inhibition of autophagy was found to attenuate axonal degeneration within the first hours after optic nerve lesion. Other studies focusing on survival of retinal ganglion cells at later postlesional time points report contradicting results, where both inhibition and induction of autophagy were beneficial for survival, depending on the model system or examination time. Therefore, a more precise understanding of the role and the kinetics of autophagy in axonal degeneration is mandatory to develop new therapies for diseases of the optic nerve. Here, we review the literature on the pathophysiological role of autophagy in axonal degeneration in the optic nerve and discuss its implications for future therapeutic approaches in diseases of the eye and the central nervous system involving axonal degeneration. PMID:26315785

  10. Three Studies Point to Same Risk Gene for Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    MedlinePLUS

    ... degeneration.” Nature Genetics , September 2013. DOI: 10.1038/ng.2758. Seddon JM et al . “Rare variants in ... degeneration.” Nature Genetics , September 2013. DOI: 10.1038/ng.2741. Helgason H et al . “A rare nonsynonymous ...

  11. Telomerase reactivation reverses tissue degeneration in aged telomerase deficient mice

    PubMed Central

    Jaskelioff, Mariela; Muller, Florian L.; Paik, Ji-Hye; Thomas, Emily; Jiang, Shan; Adams, Andrew; Sahin, Ergun; Kost-Alimova, Maria; Protopopov, Alexei; Cadianos, Juan; Horner, James W.; Maratos-Flier, Eleftheria; DePinho, Ronald A.

    2010-01-01

    An ageing world population has fueled interest in regenerative remedies that may stem declining organ function and maintain fitness. Unanswered is whether elimination of intrinsic instigators driving age-associated degeneration can reverse, as opposed to simply arrest, various afflictions of the aged. Such instigators include progressively damaged genomes. Telomerase deficient mice have served as a model system to study the adverse cellular and organismal consequences of wide-spread endogenous DNA damage signaling activation in vivo1. Telomere loss and uncapping provokes progressive tissue atrophy, stem cell depletion, organ system failure, and impaired tissue injury responses1. Here, we sought to determine whether entrenched multi-system degeneration in adult mice with severe telomere dysfunction can be halted or possibly reversed by reactivation of endogenous telomerase activity. To this end, we engineered a knock-in allele encoding a 4-hydroxytamoxifen (4-OHT)-inducible telomerase reverse transcriptase-Estrogen Receptor (TERT-ER) under transcriptional control of the endogenous TERT promoter. Homozygous TERT-ER mice display short dysfunctional telomeres and sustain increased DNA damage signaling and classical degenerative phenotypes upon successive generational matings and advancing age. Telomerase reactivation in such late generation TERT-ER mice extends telomeres, reduces DNA damage signaling and associated cellular checkpoint responses, allows resumption of proliferation in quiescent cultures, and eliminates degenerative phenotypes across multiple organs including testes, spleens and intestines. Notably, somatic telomerase reactivation reversed neurodegeneration with restoration of proliferating Sox2+ neural progenitors, DCX+ newborn neurons, and Olig2+ oligodendrocyte populations. Consistent with the integral role of SVZ neural progenitors in generation and maintenance of olfactory bulb interneurons2, this wave of telomerase-dependent neurogenesis resulted in alleviation of hyposmia and recovery of innate olfactory avoidance responses. Accumulating evidence implicating telomere damage as a driver of age-associated organ decline and disease risk1,3 and the dramatic reversal of systemic degenerative phenotypes in adult mice observed here support the development of regenerative strategies designed to restore telomere integrity. PMID:21113150

  12. Muscle hypertrophy induced by myostatin inhibition accelerates degeneration in dysferlinopathy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yun-Sil; Lehar, Adam; Sebald, Suzanne; Liu, Min; Swaggart, Kayleigh A; Talbot, C Conover; Pytel, Peter; Barton, Elisabeth R; McNally, Elizabeth M; Lee, Se-Jin

    2015-10-15

    Myostatin is a secreted signaling molecule that normally acts to limit muscle growth. As a result, there is extensive effort directed at developing drugs capable of targeting myostatin to treat patients with muscle loss. One potential concern with this therapeutic approach in patients with muscle degenerative diseases like muscular dystrophy is that inducing hypertrophy may increase stress on dystrophic fibers, thereby accelerating disease progression. To investigate this possibility, we examined the effect of blocking the myostatin pathway in dysferlin-deficient (Dysf(-/-)) mice, in which membrane repair is compromised, either by transgenic expression of follistatin in skeletal muscle or by systemic administration of the soluble form of the activin type IIB receptor (ACVR2B/Fc). Here, we show that myostatin inhibition by follistatin transgene expression in Dysf(-/-) mice results in early improvement in histopathology but ultimately exacerbates muscle degeneration; this effect was not observed in dystrophin-deficient (mdx) mice, suggesting that accelerated degeneration induced by follistatin transgene expression is specific to mice lacking dysferlin. Dysf(-/-) mice injected with ACVR2B/Fc showed significant increases in muscle mass and amelioration of fibrotic changes normally seen in 8-month-old Dysf(-/-) mice. Despite these potentially beneficial effects, ACVR2B/Fc treatment caused increases in serum CK levels in some Dysf(-/-) mice, indicating possible muscle damage induced by hypertrophy. These findings suggest that depending on the disease context, inducing muscle hypertrophy by myostatin blockade may have detrimental effects, which need to be weighed against the potential gains in muscle growth and decreased fibrosis. PMID:26206886

  13. Helicoidal peripapillary chorioretinal degeneration: electrophysiology and psychophysics in 17patients

    PubMed Central

    Eysteinsson, T.; Jonasson, F.; Jonsson, V.; Bird, A.

    1998-01-01

    AIMSTo characterise retinal function using electrophysiological and psychophysical tests in 17patients with helicoidal peripapillary chorioretinal degeneration.?METHODSThe electroretinogram (ERG) was recorded using gold foil corneal electrodes. The electro-oculogram (EOG) was recorded using a standard protocol. Dark adaptometry was recorded with an SST-1 dark adaptometer and colour vision assessed with Ishihara plates and Farnsworth D-15.?RESULTSAll subjects had a recordable ERG. The amplitudes and implicit times of the a- and b-waves were within normal limits at all luminances in five subjects (age 21-70 years, mean 40years). The ERG of six (age 26-55 years, mean 40.7years) had subnormal amplitudes at all luminances, but normal implicit times, and six (age 38-81 years, mean 60.7years) had abnormal ERGs with marked reduction of a- and b-waves, and delayed implicit times of the b-wave. The implicit times of the a-wave were normal in all subjects. A reduction in the b/a wave ratios was not found, nor was there selective loss of scotopic, mixed rod/cone, or cone responses. The light/dark ratio of the EOG was subnormal (150-185%) or abnormal (below 150%) in all but three subjects. Two patients with normal EOG showed normal ERGs in both eyes, but one had subnormal ERGs in both eyes. The scotopic sensitivity was normal in all subjects and dark adaptation showed a normal time course. Colour vision was normal in all patients.?CONCLUSIONThe results suggest that in most cases the function of the retinal pigment epithelium is affected by this disease before any changes in the function of the sensory retina are detectable by our methods, and that retinal dysfunction is focal rather than diffuse.?? Keywords: chorioretinal degeneration; electroretinogram; dark adaptation; colour vision PMID:9602625

  14. Muscle hypertrophy induced by myostatin inhibition accelerates degeneration in dysferlinopathy

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Yun-Sil; Lehar, Adam; Sebald, Suzanne; Liu, Min; Swaggart, Kayleigh A.; Talbot, C. Conover; Pytel, Peter; Barton, Elisabeth R.; McNally, Elizabeth M.; Lee, Se-Jin

    2015-01-01

    Myostatin is a secreted signaling molecule that normally acts to limit muscle growth. As a result, there is extensive effort directed at developing drugs capable of targeting myostatin to treat patients with muscle loss. One potential concern with this therapeutic approach in patients with muscle degenerative diseases like muscular dystrophy is that inducing hypertrophy may increase stress on dystrophic fibers, thereby accelerating disease progression. To investigate this possibility, we examined the effect of blocking the myostatin pathway in dysferlin-deficient (Dysf−/−) mice, in which membrane repair is compromised, either by transgenic expression of follistatin in skeletal muscle or by systemic administration of the soluble form of the activin type IIB receptor (ACVR2B/Fc). Here, we show that myostatin inhibition by follistatin transgene expression in Dysf−/− mice results in early improvement in histopathology but ultimately exacerbates muscle degeneration; this effect was not observed in dystrophin-deficient (mdx) mice, suggesting that accelerated degeneration induced by follistatin transgene expression is specific to mice lacking dysferlin. Dysf−/− mice injected with ACVR2B/Fc showed significant increases in muscle mass and amelioration of fibrotic changes normally seen in 8-month-old Dysf−/− mice. Despite these potentially beneficial effects, ACVR2B/Fc treatment caused increases in serum CK levels in some Dysf−/− mice, indicating possible muscle damage induced by hypertrophy. These findings suggest that depending on the disease context, inducing muscle hypertrophy by myostatin blockade may have detrimental effects, which need to be weighed against the potential gains in muscle growth and decreased fibrosis. PMID:26206886

  15. Age-related macular degeneration: Evidence of a major gene

    SciTech Connect

    Bhatt, S.; Warren, C.; Yang, H.

    1994-09-01

    Age-related macular degeneration is a major cause of blindness in developing countries. It remains a very poorly understood disorder. Although environmental and genetic factors have been implicated in its pathogenesis, none have been firmly implicated. The purpose of this study was to use pedigree analysis to evaluate the possible role of a major gene as a determinant of familial aggregation. Information was collected regarding occupation, smoking, sun exposure, associated medical problems and family history. 50 probands with age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) and 39 age, race and sex-matched controls were included in the study. In the ARMD group 15/50 (30%) of probands reported a positive family history; 22 out of 222 first degree relatives over age 60 were reported to be affected. In the control groups, none of the 138 first degree relatives over age 50 had a history of ARMD. This difference is statistically significant (p = 0.0003), indicating that genetic factors may play an important role in the pathogenesis of ARMD. In the ARMD group more siblings as compared to parents (16/127 vs. 5/82) were affected. 5/50 (10%) of the ARMD probands also gave a history of a second degree relative affected with ARMD, compared to none known among the relatives of controls. Data from 50 pedigrees were analyzed by complex segregation analysis under a class A regressive logistic model using the REGD program implemented in the SAGE package. Preliminary results allow rejection of a polygenic model and suggest there is a major gene for ARMD in these families. The inheritance model most compatible with the observed familial aggregation is autosomal recessive. In conclusion, these results are suggestive of a major gene effect in the etiology of ARMD. Identification of a major gene effect is a first step to further pursue linkage analysis and to search for the gene(s) involved in the causation of ARMD.

  16. Simulating the Double-Degenerate Channel for Type Ia Supernovae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jumper, Kevin; Fisher, R. T.

    2013-01-01

    Type Ia Supernovae (SNe Ia) are the thermonuclear explosions of white dwarfs, and are of fundamental importance to the study of many phenomena, including the expansion of the universe and dark energy. For many years, it was suspected that that SNe Ia occur in binary systems, but the identity of the white dwarfs companion could not be determined. A leading hypothesis, the single-degenerate (SD) channel, suggests that the companion is either on the main sequence or a red giant, and that the white dwarf accretes matter off of its companion until it nears the Chandrasekhar limit of 1.4 solar masses, causing the white dwarf to detonate shortly thereafter. Another hypothesis, the double-degenerate (DD) channel, proposes that both stars in the system are white dwarfs and that they merge together, resulting in a central, rapidly spinning white dwarf, surrounded by a thick disk of remnant material. Precisely how this triggers a detonation remains unclear; early spherically-symmetric models by Nomoto et al. indicated that merged white dwarfs would collapse to neutron stars instead of producing supernovae. Recent observations of two supernovae discovered last year by the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF), SN 2011 fe and SN PTF11k, have provided evidence that suggests that both the SD and DD channels coexist in nature. Consequently, it is important to develop simulations that can resolve the mystery of the DD channels detonation mechanism. To this end, we use a smoothed-particle hydrodynamics (SPH) code, GADGET-1, to model the rotating flows characteristic of merged DD systems and study how they evolve with time.

  17. Late onset cerebellar degeneration in a middle-aged cat.

    PubMed

    Negrin, Arianna; Bernardini, Marco; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Castagnaro, Massimo

    2006-12-01

    Cerebellar degeneration (abiotrophy) (CD) is a spontaneous and accelerated degeneration of one or several mature cerebellar neuronal cell populations and has been described in many domestic animals, especially in dogs, with numerous breed-related cases. In cats, CD is mentioned as a rare sporadic entity. Late onset CDs are exceptionally uncommon and only two cases are reported in young adults, both aged 18 months. This report describes clinical and pathological findings of a late onset feline CD in a 9-year-old male Persian cat. The cat was presented with a history of progressive ataxia lasting 2 years. Neurological examination revealed severe neurological deficits such as generalised and severe ataxia, hypermetria in all four limbs, and bilateral absence of menace response. The lesion was diffusely localised in cerebellum. On gross pathology, the cerebellum appeared of normal size and shape and kidneys were characterised by mild hyperaemia. Histologically, lesions were limited to the cerebellum and kidneys. In the cerebellum, all cerebellar folia of both hemispheres and the vermis were affected. Changes were characterised by severe and diffuse loss of Purkinje cells, loss of cellularity in the granular layer, mild astrogliosis associated with moderate hypertrophy of Bergmann's glia. Immunohistochemistry for feline parvovirus antigen revealed a negative result. Renal lesions consisted of chronic fibrosis associated with chronic interstitial nephritis. CD is a rare disease and occurs commonly in puppies or young animals, who are clinically normal at birth and usually develop neurological signs within a few weeks or months after birth. This report represents the first case of CD in a middle-aged cat. PMID:16781880

  18. Capsaicin Induces Degeneration of Cutaneous Autonomic Nerve Fibers

    PubMed Central

    Gibbons, Christopher H; Wang, Ningshan; Freeman, Roy

    2010-01-01

    Objective To determine the effects of topical application of capsaicin on cutaneous autonomic nerves. Methods Thirty-two healthy subjects underwent occlusive application of 0.1% capsaicin cream (or placebo) for 48 hours. Subjects were followed for 6 months with serial assessments of sudomotor, vasomotor, pilomotor and sensory function with simultaneous assessment of innervation through skin biopsies. Results There were reductions in sudomotor, vasomotor, pilomotor and sensory function in capsaicin- treated subjects (p<0.01 vs. placebo). Sensory function declined more rapidly than autonomic function; reaching a nadir by day 6 while autonomic function reached a nadir by day 16. There were reductions in sudomotor, vasomotor, pilomotor and sensory nerve fiber densities in capsaicin treated subjects (p<0.01 vs. placebo). Intra-epidermal nerve fiber density declined maximally by 6 days while autonomic nerve fiber densities reached maximal degeneration by day 16. Conversely, autonomic nerves generally regenerated more rapidly than sensory nerves, requiring 4050 days to return to baseline levels while sensory fibers required 140150 days to return to baseline. Interpretation Topical capsaicin leads to degeneration of sudomotor, vasomotor and pilomotor nerves accompanied by impairment of sudomotor, vasomotor and pilomotor function. These results suggest the susceptibility and/or pathophysiologic mechanisms of nerve damage may differ between autonomic and sensory nerve fibers treated with capsaicin and enhances the capsaicin model for the study of disease modifying agents. The data suggest caution should be taken when topical capsaicin is applied to skin surfaces at risk for ulceration, particularly in neuropathic conditions characterized by sensory and autonomic impairment. PMID:21061393

  19. Polyethylene glycol induced mouse model of retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Lyzogubov, Valeriy V; Bora, Nalini S; Tytarenko, Ruslana G; Bora, Puran S

    2014-10-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of irreversible blindness. This study was done to characterize dry AMD-like changes in mouse retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and retina after polyethylene glycol (PEG) treatment. We injected male C57BL/6 mice subretinally with PBS, 0.025, 0.25, 0.5 and 1.0mg of PEG-400 and the animals were sacrificed on day 5. Eyes were harvested and processed for histological analysis. In all other experiments 0.5mg PEG was injected and animals were sacrificed on days 1, 3, 5 or 14. Paraffin, 5?m and plastic, 1?m and 80nm sections were used for further analysis. Subretinal injection of 0.5mg PEG induced a 32% reduction of outer nuclear layer (ONL) thickness, 61% decrease of photoreceptor outer and inner segment length, 49% decrease of nuclear density in the ONL and 31% increase of RPE cell density by day 5 after injection. The maximum level of TUNEL positive nuclei in the ONL (6.8+1.99%) was detected at day 5 after PEG injection and co-localized with Casp3act. Histological signs of apoptosis were observed in the ONL by light or electron microscopy. Degeneration of RPE cells was found in PEG injected eyes. Gene expression data identified several genes reported to be involved in human AMD. C3, Cfi, Serping1, Mmp9, Htra1 and Lpl were up-regulated in PEG injected eyes compared to PBS controls. PEG leads to morphological and gene expression changes in RPE and retina consistent with dry AMD. This model will be useful to investigate dry AMD pathogenesis and treatment. PMID:25088354

  20. Protective Effect of Ligustrazine on Lumbar Intervertebral Disc Degeneration of Rats Induced by Prolonged Upright Posture

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Qian-Qian; Ding, Dao-Fang; Xi, Zhi-Jie; Chen, Yan; Li, Chen-Guang; Liu, Shu-Fen; Lu, Sheng; Zhao, Yong-Jian; Shi, Qi; Wang, Yong-Jun

    2014-01-01

    Most chronic low back pain is the result of degeneration of the lumbar intervertebral disc. Ligustrazine, an alkaloid from Chuanxiong, reportedly is able to relieve pain, suppress inflammation, and treat osteoarthritis and it has the protective effect on cartilage and chondrocytes. Therefore, we asked whether ligustrazine could reduce intervertebral disc degeneration. To determine the effect of ligustrazine on disc degeneration, we applied a rat model. The intervertebral disc degeneration of the rats was induced by prolonged upright posture. We found that pretreatment with ligustrazine for 1 month recovered the structural distortion of the degenerative disc; inhibited the expression of type X collagen, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-13, and MMP3; upregulated type II collagen; and decreased IL-1?, cyclooxygenase (COX)-2, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) expression. In conclusion, ligustrazine is a promising agent for treating lumbar intervertebral disc degeneration disease. PMID:24872832

  1. Myxoid degeneration of appendix wall: An entity in search of identity: Report of two cases.

    PubMed

    Hakima, Laleh; Mohanty, Sambit K; Pradhan, Dinesh; Samal, Aurobinda; Pattnaik, Niharika; Turi, George K

    2015-01-01

    Myxoid degeneration of the appendix wall without accompanying acute appendicitis (AA) is rare. We report two cases of myxoid degeneration of appendix associated with appendiceal adhesions. Both the cases showed marked splitting and disruption of smooth muscle fibers of muscularis propria by abundant myxoid ground substance and dispersed degenerated hypereosinophilic myofibers with pyknotic nuclei. Scattered degenerated myocytes with vacuolated cytoplasm were also identified. Focal serosal fibrosis was observed in both cases. We reviewed other pathologic processes that involve the appendix such as fibrous obliteration, AA, and appendiceal mucinous neoplasm (AMN) and conclude that the constellations of pathologic findings described herein are unique. Nonneoplastic dissecting myxoid degeneration of the appendix muscularis propria has not been reported in the pathology literature to date. The pathologic nature of appendiceal mucinous stromal change remains unclear; however, we hypothesize that the lesion occurs as a consequence of traction related injury to the appendix. PMID:26881615

  2. The Rate of Vitamin A Dimerization in Lipofuscinogenesis, Fundus Autofluorescence, Retinal Senescence and Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Washington, Ilyas; Saad, Leonide

    2016-01-01

    One of the earliest events preceding several forms of retinal degeneration is the formation and accumulation of vitamin A dimers in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and underlying Bruch's membrane (BM). Such degenerations include Stargardt disease, Best disease, forms of retinitis pigmentosa, and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Since their discovery in the 1990's, dimers of vitamin A, have been postulated as chemical triggers driving retinal senescence and degeneration. There is evidence to suggest that the rate at which vitamin A dimerizes and the eye's response to the dimerization products may dictate the retina's lifespan. Here, we present outstanding questions, finding the answers to which may help to elucidate the role of vitamin A dimerization in retinal degeneration. PMID:26427431

  3. Quantitative Ultrasound Assessment of Cartilage Degeneration in Ovariectomized Rats with Low Estrogen Levels.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qing; Liu, Zhiwei; Wang, Yinong; Pan, Qingya; Feng, Qianjin; Huang, Qinghua; Chen, Wufan

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess quantitatively the site-specific degeneration of articular cartilage in ovariectomized rats with low estrogen levels using a high-frequency ultrasound system. Fourteen female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into two groups (n = 7 per group): a sham group in which only the peri-ovarian fatty tissue was exteriorized and an ovariectomized group that underwent bilateral ovariectomy to create a menopause model with low estrogen levels. All animals were sacrificed at the end of the third week after ovariectomy. Hindlimbs were harvested. The articular cartilage from five anatomic sites (i.e., femoral caput [FC], medial femoral condyle [MFC], lateral femoral condyle [LFC], medial tibial plateau [MTP] and lateral tibial plateau [LTP]) was examined with ultrasound. Four parameters were extracted from the ultrasound radiofrequency data: reflection coefficient of the cartilage surface (RC1), reflection coefficient of the cartilage-bone interface (RC2), ultrasound roughness index (URI) and thickness of the cartilage tissue. The results indicated significant (p < 0.05) site dependence for cartilage thickness, URI and RC1 in the sham group. The 3-wk post-menopause ovariectomized rats exhibited significant increases (p < 0.05) in the URI at the LFC, MTP and LTP; significant decreases (p < 0.05) in RC1 at the FC, LFC and MTP; and significant decreases (p < 0.05) in cartilage thickness at the MFC, LFC, MTP and LTP. These results of this study suggest that post-menopausal estrogen reduction induces morphologic and acoustic alterations in the articular cartilage of the hip and knee joints in ovariectomized rats. PMID:26497769

  4. Clinical Impact of Sagittal Spinopelvic Parameters on Disc Degeneration in Young Adults.

    PubMed

    Oh, Young-Min; Eun, Jong-Pil

    2015-10-01

    The sagittal balance plays an important role in the determination of shear and compressive forces applied on the anterior (vertebral bodies and intervertebral discs) and posterior (facet joints) elements of the lumbar vertebral column. Many studies have also examined the effect of structural changes in the disc on the biomechanical characteristics of the spinal segment. Nevertheless, the relationship between sagittal balance and the degree of disc degeneration has not been extensively explored. Thus, here we investigated the relationships between various sagittal spinopelvic parameters and the degree of disc degeneration in young adults.A total of 278 young adult male patients were included in this study (age range: 18-24 years old). Multiple sagittal spinopelvic parameters, including pelvic incidence (PI), sacral slope (SS), pelvic tilt (PT), lumbar lordosis (LL), sacral inclination (SI), lumbosacral angle (LSA), and sacral table angle (STA), were measured from standing lateral lumbosacral radiographs. The degree of intervertebral disc degeneration was classified using a modified Pfirrmann scale. To assess the pain intensity of each patient, the visual analogue scale (VAS) score for low back pain (LBP) was obtained from all the patients. Finally, the relationships between these spinopelvic parameters and the degree of disc degeneration in young adults were analyzed. Also, we performed multiple logistic regression study.Out of all the spinopelvic parameters measured in this study, a low STA and a low SI were the only significant risk factors that were associated with disc degeneration in young adults. It means that patients with disc degeneration tend to have more severe sacral kyphosis and vertical sacrum.We found that patients with disc degeneration showed a lower SI and lower STA compared with patients without disc degeneration in young adults. Therefore, we suggest that the patients with disc degeneration tend to have more vertical sacrum, more sacral kyphosis, and more severe LBP, and that SI and STA measurements should be carefully considered to predict or prevent further disc degeneration and LBP. PMID:26496324

  5. Clinical Impact of Sagittal Spinopelvic Parameters on Disc Degeneration in Young Adults

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Young-Min; Eun, Jong-Pil

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The sagittal balance plays an important role in the determination of shear and compressive forces applied on the anterior (vertebral bodies and intervertebral discs) and posterior (facet joints) elements of the lumbar vertebral column. Many studies have also examined the effect of structural changes in the disc on the biomechanical characteristics of the spinal segment. Nevertheless, the relationship between sagittal balance and the degree of disc degeneration has not been extensively explored. Thus, here we investigated the relationships between various sagittal spinopelvic parameters and the degree of disc degeneration in young adults. A total of 278 young adult male patients were included in this study (age range: 1824 years old). Multiple sagittal spinopelvic parameters, including pelvic incidence (PI), sacral slope (SS), pelvic tilt (PT), lumbar lordosis (LL), sacral inclination (SI), lumbosacral angle (LSA), and sacral table angle (STA), were measured from standing lateral lumbosacral radiographs. The degree of intervertebral disc degeneration was classified using a modified Pfirrmann scale. To assess the pain intensity of each patient, the visual analogue scale (VAS) score for low back pain (LBP) was obtained from all the patients. Finally, the relationships between these spinopelvic parameters and the degree of disc degeneration in young adults were analyzed. Also, we performed multiple logistic regression study. Out of all the spinopelvic parameters measured in this study, a low STA and a low SI were the only significant risk factors that were associated with disc degeneration in young adults. It means that patients with disc degeneration tend to have more severe sacral kyphosis and vertical sacrum. We found that patients with disc degeneration showed a lower SI and lower STA compared with patients without disc degeneration in young adults. Therefore, we suggest that the patients with disc degeneration tend to have more vertical sacrum, more sacral kyphosis, and more severe LBP, and that SI and STA measurements should be carefully considered to predict or prevent further disc degeneration and LBP. PMID:26496324

  6. Reduction of GABA/sub B/ receptor binding induced by climbing fiber degeneration in the rat cerebellum

    SciTech Connect

    Kato, K.; Fukuda, H.

    1985-07-22

    When the rat cerebellar climbing fibers degenerated, as induced by lesioning the inferior olive with 3-acetylpyridine (3-AP), GABA/sub B/ receptor binding determined with /sup 3/H-(+/-)baclofen was reduced in the cerebellum but not in the cerebral cortex of rats. Computer analysis of saturation data revealed two components of the binding sites, and indicated that decrease of the binding in the cerebellum was due to reduction in receptor density, mainly of the high-affinity sites, the B/sub max/ of which was reduced to one-third that in the control animals. In vitro treatment with 3-AP, of the membranes prepared from either the cerebellum or the cerebral cortex, induced no alteration in the binding sites, thereby indicating that the alteration of GABA/sub B/ sites induced by in vivo treatment with 3-AP is not due to a direct action of 3-AP on the receptor. GABA/sub A/ and benzodiazepine receptor binding labelled with /sup 3/H-muscimol and /sup 3/H-diazepam, respectively, in both of brain regions was not affected by destruction of the inferior olive. These results provide evidence that some of the GABA/sub B/ sites but neither GABA/sub A/ nor benzodiazepine receptors in the cerebellum are located at the climbing fiber terminals. 28 references, 4 figures, 2 tables.

  7. The origin of the neural macrophage: a quantitative ultrastructural study of cell population changes during Wallerian degeneration.

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, J D

    1979-01-01

    The changes that follow a localised crush injury to the rat sural nerve have been used to study endoneurial populations during Wallerian degeneration. The removal of products of degeneration, and in particular myelin debris, is accomplished by globule-laden cells which appear in the endoneurium during the first few days of repair. The origin of these cells has been investigated using a quantitative ultrastructural technique. Serial planimetric measurements of all populations, identifiable in terms of criteria that did not pre-judge their true nature, were made at intervals over a period of 15 days. Cell counts obtained immediately below the site of injury and 1 and 3 cm distally were compared, and graphs of endoneurial population changes constructed from these measurements. Additional descriptive evidence was invoked to assist in establishing the actual identity of the extratubal vacuolated cells which had been classified and measured empirically. Comparing the changes in the number of these cells with that of the intratubal vascuolated cell population, and taking account of the presence of immature macrophages in both proximal and distal situations, lead to the conclusion that the extratubal vacuolated cells are mostly derived from the bloodstream, the rest being of local intratubal origin. There was no evidence to support the notion that Schwann cells transform into macrophages. Images Fig. 6 Fig. 7 Fig. 8 Figs. 9 and 10 PMID:511756

  8. Injectable microcryogels reinforced alginate encapsulation of mesenchymal stromal cells for leak-proof delivery and alleviation of canine disc degeneration.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Yang; Chen, Chun; Liu, Wei; Fu, Qinyouen; Han, Zhihua; Li, Yaqian; Feng, Siyu; Li, Xiaokang; Qi, Chunxiao; Wu, Jianhong; Wang, Deli; Corbett, Christopher; Chan, Barbara P; Ruan, Dike; Du, Yanan

    2015-08-01

    In situ crosslinked thermo-responsive hydrogel applied for minimally invasive treatment of intervertebral disc degeneration (IVDD) may not prevent extrusion of cell suspension from injection site due to high internal pressure of intervertebral disc (IVD), causing treatment failure or osteophyte formation. In this study, mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) were encapsulated in alginate precursor and loaded into previously developed macroporous PGEDA-derived microcryogels (PMs) to form three-dimensional (3D) microscale cellular niches, enabling non-thermo-responsive alginate hydrogel to be injectable. The PMs reinforced alginate hydrogel showed superior elasticity compared to alginate hydrogel alone and could well protect encapsulated cells through injection. Chondrogenic committed MSCs in the injectable microniches expressed higher level of nucleus pulposus (NP) cell markers compared to 2D cultured cells. In an ex vivo organ culture model, injection of MSCs-laden PMs into NP tissue prevented cell leakage, improved cell retention and survival compared to free cell injection. In canine IVDD models, alleviated degeneration was observed in MSCs-laden PMs treated group after six months which was superior to other treated groups. Our results provide in-depth demonstration of injectable alginate hydrogel reinforced by PMs as a leak-proof cell delivery system for augmented regenerative therapy of IVDD in canine models. PMID:25956851

  9. Degenerate connective polypeptide 1 (CP1) domain from human mitochondrial leucyl-tRNA synthetase.

    PubMed

    Ye, Qing; Wang, Meng; Fang, Zhi-Peng; Ruan, Zhi-Rong; Ji, Quan-Quan; Zhou, Xiao-Long; Wang, En-Duo

    2015-10-01

    The connective polypeptide 1 (CP1) editing domain of leucyl-tRNA synthetase (LeuRS) from various species either harbors a conserved active site to exclude tRNA mis-charging with noncognate amino acids or is evolutionarily truncated or lost because there is no requirement for high translational fidelity. However, human mitochondrial LeuRS (hmtLeuRS) contains a full-length but degenerate CP1 domain that has mutations in some residues important for post-transfer editing. The significance of such an inactive CP1 domain and a translational accuracy mechanism with different noncognate amino acids are not completely understood. Here, we identified the essential role of the evolutionarily divergent CP1 domain in facilitating hmtLeuRS's catalytic efficiency and endowing enzyme with resistance to AN2690, a broad-spectrum drug acting on LeuRSs. In addition, the canonical core of hmtLeuRS is not stringent for noncognate norvaline (Nva) and valine (Val). hmtLeuRS has a very weak tRNA-independent pre-transfer editing activity for Nva, which is insufficient to remove mis-activated Nva. Moreover, hmtLeuRS chimeras fused with a functional CP1 domain from LeuRSs of other species, regardless of origin, showed restored post-transfer editing activity and acquired fidelity during aminoacylation. This work offers a novel perspective on the role of the CP1 domain in optimizing aminoacylation efficiency. PMID:26272616

  10. Lumbar disc degeneration is linked to a carbohydrate sulfotransferase 3 variant

    PubMed Central

    Song, You-Qiang; Karasugi, Tatsuki; Cheung, Kenneth M.C.; Chiba, Kazuhiro; Ho, Daniel W.H.; Miyake, Atsushi; Kao, Patrick Y.P.; Sze, Kit Ling; Yee, Anita; Takahashi, Atsushi; Kawaguchi, Yoshiharu; Mikami, Yasuo; Matsumoto, Morio; Togawa, Daisuke; Kanayama, Masahiro; Shi, Dongquan; Dai, Jin; Jiang, Qing; Wu, Chengai; Tian, Wei; Wang, Na; Leong, John C.Y.; Luk, Keith D.K.; Yip, Shea-ping; Cherny, Stacey S.; Wang, Junwen; Mundlos, Stefan; Kelempisioti, Anthi; Eskola, Pasi J.; Mnnikk, Minna; Mkel, Pirkka; Karppinen, Jaro; Jrvelin, Marjo-Riitta; OReilly, Paul F.; Kubo, Michiaki; Kimura, Tomoatsu; Kubo, Toshikazu; Toyama, Yoshiaki; Mizuta, Hiroshi; Cheah, Kathryn S.E.; Tsunoda, Tatsuhiko; Sham, Pak-Chung; Ikegawa, Shiro; Chan, Danny

    2013-01-01

    Lumbar disc degeneration (LDD) is associated with both genetic and environmental factors and affects many people worldwide. A hallmark of LDD is loss of proteoglycan and water content in the nucleus pulposus of intervertebral discs. While some genetic determinants have been reported, the etiology of LDD is largely unknown. Here we report the findings from linkage and association studies on a total of 32,642 subjects consisting of 4,043 LDD cases and 28,599 control subjects. We identified carbohydrate sulfotransferase 3 (CHST3), an enzyme that catalyzes proteoglycan sulfation, as a susceptibility gene for LDD. The strongest genome-wide linkage peak encompassed CHST3 from a Southern Chinese familybased data set, while a genome-wide association was observed at rs4148941 in the gene in a meta-analysis using multiethnic population cohorts. rs4148941 lies within a potential microRNA-513a-5p (miR-513a-5p) binding site. Interaction between miR-513a-5p and mRNA transcribed from the susceptibility allele (A allele) of rs4148941 was enhanced in vitro compared with transcripts from other alleles. Additionally, expression of CHST3 mRNA was significantly reduced in the intervertebral disc cells of human subjects carrying the A allele of rs4148941. Together, our data provide new insights into the etiology of LDD, implicating an interplay between genetic risk factors and miRNA. PMID:24216480

  11. Regulation of age-related macular degeneration-like pathology by complement factor H.

    PubMed

    Toomey, Christopher B; Kelly, Una; Saban, Daniel R; Bowes Rickman, Catherine

    2015-06-01

    Complement factor H (CFH) is a major susceptibility gene for age-related macular degeneration (AMD); however, its impact on AMD pathobiology is unresolved. Here, the role of CFH in the development of AMD pathology in vivo was interrogated by analyzing aged Cfh(+/-) and Cfh(-/-) mice fed a high-fat, cholesterol-enriched diet. Strikingly, decreased levels of CFH led to increased sub-retinal pigmented epithelium (sub-RPE) deposit formation, specifically basal laminar deposits, following high-fat diet. Mechanistically, our data show that deposits are due to CFH competition for lipoprotein binding sites in Bruch's membrane. Interestingly and despite sub-RPE deposit formation occurring in both Cfh(+/-) and Cfh(-/-) mice, RPE damage accompanied by loss of vision occurred only in old Cfh(+/-) mice. We demonstrate that such pathology is a function of excess complement activation in Cfh(+/-) mice versus complement deficiency in Cfh(-/-) animals. Due to the CFH-dependent increase in sub-RPE deposit height, we interrogated the potential of CFH as a previously unidentified regulator of Bruch's membrane lipoprotein binding and show, using human Bruch's membrane explants, that CFH removes endogenous human lipoproteins in aged donors. Thus, advanced age, high-fat diet, and decreased CFH induce sub-RPE deposit formation leading to complement activation, which contributes to RPE damage and visual function impairment. This new understanding of the complicated interactions of CFH in AMD-like pathology provides an improved foundation for the development of targeted therapies for AMD. PMID:25991857

  12. Investigating Mitochondria as a Target for Treating Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Terluk, Marcia R.; Kapphahn, Rebecca J.; Soukup, Lauren M.; Gong, Hwee; Gallardo, Christopher; Montezuma, Sandra R.

    2015-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness among older adults in the developed world. Although the pathological mechanisms have not been definitively elucidated, evidence suggests a key role for mitochondrial (mt) dysfunction. The current study used our unique collection of human retinal samples graded for the donor's stage of AMD to address fundamental questions about mtDNA damage in the retina. To evaluate the distribution of mtDNA damage in the diseased retina, damage in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and neural retina from individual donors were compared. To directly test a long-held belief that the macula is selectively damaged with AMD, RPE mtDNA damage was measured in the macula and peripheral sections from individual donors. Small segments of the entire mt genome were examined to determine whether specific regions are preferentially damaged. Our results show that mtDNA damage is limited to the RPE, equivalent mtDNA damage is found in the macular and peripheral RPE, and sites of damage are localized to regions of the mt genome that may impact mt function. These results provide a scientific basis for targeting the RPE mitochondria with therapies that protect and enhance mt function as a strategy for combating AMD. PMID:25948278

  13. Recent Patents on Emerging Therapeutics for the Treatment of Glaucoma, Age Related Macular Degeneration and Uveitis

    PubMed Central

    Vadlapudi, Aswani Dutt; Patel, Ashaben; Cholkar, Kishore; Mitra, Ashim K.

    2014-01-01

    Advancements in the field and rising interest among pharmaceutical researchers have led to the development of new molecules with enhanced therapeutic activity. Design of new drugs which can target a particular pathway and/or explore novel targets is of immense interest to ocular pharmacologists worldwide. Delivery of suitable pharmacologically active agents at proper dose (within the therapeutic window) to the target tissues without any toxicity to the healthy ocular tissues still remain an elusive task. Moreover, the presence of static and dynamic barriers to drug absorption including the corneal epithelium (lipophilic), corneal and scleral stroma (hydrophilic), conjunctival lymphatics, choroidal vasculature and the blood-ocular barriers also pose a significant challenge for achieving therapeutic drug concentrations at the target site. Although many agents are currently available, new compounds are being introduced for treating various ocular diseases. Deeper understanding of the etiology and complex mechanisms associated with the disease condition would aid in the development of potential therapeutic candidates. Novel small molecules as well as complex biotechnology derived macromolecules with superior efficacy, safety and tolerability are being developed. Therefore, this review article provides an overview of existing drugs, treatment options, advances in emerging therapeutics and related recent patents for the treatment of ocular disorders such as glaucoma, age related macular degeneration (AMD) and uveitis. PMID:25414810

  14. Deafness and Retinal Degeneration in A Novel USH1C Knock-In Mouse Model

    PubMed Central

    Lentz, Jennifer J.; Gordon, William C.; Farris, Hamilton E.; MacDonald, Glen H.; Cunningham, Dale E.; Robbins, Carol A.; Tempel, Bruce L.; Bazan, Nicolas G.; Rubel, Edwin W.; Oesterle, Elizabeth C.; Keats, Bronya J.

    2010-01-01

    Usher syndrome is the leading cause of combined deaf-blindness, but the molecular mechanisms underlying the auditory and visual impairment are poorly understood. Usher I is characterized by profound congenital hearing loss, vestibular dysfunction and progressive retinitis pigmentosa beginning in early adolescence. Using the c.216G>A cryptic splice site mutation in exon 3 of the USH1C gene found in Acadian Usher I patients in Louisiana, we constructed the first mouse model that develops both deafness and retinal degeneration. The same truncated mRNA transcript found in Usher 1C patients is found in the cochleae and retinas of these knock-in mice. Absent auditory-evoked brainstem responses indicated that the mutant mice are deaf at one month of age. Cochlear histology showed disorganized hair cell rows, abnormal bundles, and loss of both inner and outer hair cells in the middle turns and at the base. Retinal dysfunction as evident by an abnormal electroretinogram was seen as early as 1 month of age, with progressive loss of rod photoreceptors between 6 and 12 months of age. This knock-in mouse reproduces the dual sensory loss of human Usher I, providing a novel resource to study the disease mechanism and the development of therapies. PMID:20095043

  15. Safety and Tolerability Study of AAV2-sFLT01 in Patients With Neovascular Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-01-05

    Macular Degeneration; Age-Related Maculopathies; Age-Related Maculopathy; Maculopathies, Age-Related; Maculopathy, Age-Related; Retinal Degeneration; Retinal Neovascularization; Gene Therapy; Therapy, Gene; Eye Diseases

  16. Alterations in Kainate Receptor and TRPM1 Localization in Bipolar Cells after Retinal Photoreceptor Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Gayet-Primo, Jacqueline; Puthussery, Theresa

    2015-01-01

    Photoreceptor degeneration differentially impacts glutamatergic signaling in downstream On and Off bipolar cells. In rodent models, photoreceptor degeneration leads to loss of glutamatergic signaling in On bipolar cells, whereas Off bipolar cells appear to retain glutamate sensitivity, even after extensive photoreceptor loss. The localization and identity of the receptors that mediate these residual glutamate responses in Off bipolar cells have not been determined. Recent studies show that macaque and mouse Off bipolar cells receive glutamatergic input primarily through kainate-type glutamate receptors. Here, we studied the impact of photoreceptor degeneration on glutamate receptor and their associated proteins in Off and On bipolar cells. We show that the kainate receptor subunit, GluK1, persists in remodeled Off bipolar cell dendrites of the rd10 mouse retina. However, the pattern of expression is altered and the intensity of staining is reduced compared to wild-type retina. The kainate receptor auxiliary subunit, Neto1, also remains in Off bipolar cell dendrites after extensive photoreceptor degeneration. Similar preservation of kainate receptor subunits was evident in human retina in which photoreceptors had degenerated due to serous retinal detachment. In contrast, photoreceptor degeneration leads to loss of synaptic expression of TRPM1 in mouse and human On bipolar cells, but strong somatic expression remains. These findings demonstrate that Off bipolar cells retain dendritic glutamate receptors during retinal degeneration and could thus serve as a conduit for signal transmission from transplanted or optogenetically restored photoreceptors. PMID:26733812

  17. Evaluation of the Effect of Mega MSM on Improving Joint Function in Populations Experiencing Joint Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Gang; Zhou, Tian; Gu, Yaqin; Wang, Qinping; Shariff, Mina; Gu, Pingping; Nguyen, Tuong; Shi, Rong; Rao, Jianyu

    2015-01-01

    Joint degeneration has become a commonplace problem in aging populations. The main clinical manifestations include joint pain, joint stiffness and joint swelling with functional disorder. Mega MSM is a nutritional supplement that may provide potential relief for joint problems associated with joint degeneration. The current experiment performed was a 12-week, randomized, double-blind, controlled study conducted on populations in China experiencing joint degeneration. The objective of the study was to determine whether the daily use of Mega MSM capsules could improve joint function, relieve symptoms of joint degeneration and improve the quality of life in aging populations. A total of 100 male and female participants over 50 years old who had at least one of the related symptoms of joint degeneration (joint pain, joint stiffness, joint swelling, difficulty walking, difficulty getting up from bed and difficulty going down stairs) were recruited and their symptoms of joint degeneration before and after the intervention were recorded. In this study, Mega MSM shows positive effects in improving joint function, relieving symptoms associated with joint degeneration and improving the quality of life in aging populations. PMID:26199577

  18. Painful, degenerating intervertebral discs up-regulate neurite sprouting and CGRP through nociceptive factors

    PubMed Central

    Krock, Emerson; Rosenzweig, Derek H; Chabot-Dor, Anne-Julie; Jarzem, Peter; Weber, Michael H; Ouellet, Jean A; Stone, Laura S; Haglund, Lisbet

    2014-01-01

    Intervertebral disc degeneration (IVD) can result in chronic low back pain, a common cause of morbidity and disability. Inflammation has been associated with IVD degeneration, however the relationship between inflammatory factors and chronic low back pain remains unclear. Furthermore, increased levels of nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) are both associated with inflammation and chronic low back pain, but whether degenerating discs release sufficient concentrations of factors that induce nociceptor plasticity remains unclear. Degenerating IVDs from low back pain patients and healthy, painless IVDs from human organ donors were cultured ex vivo. Inflammatory and nociceptive factors released by IVDs into culture media were quantified by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays and protein arrays. The ability of factors released to induce neurite growth and nociceptive neuropeptide production was investigated. Degenerating discs release increased levels of tumour necrosis factor-?, interleukin-1?, NGF and BDNF. Factors released by degenerating IVDs increased neurite growth and calcitonin gene-related peptide expression, both of which were blocked by anti-NGF treatment. Furthermore, protein arrays found increased levels of 20 inflammatory factors, many of which have nociceptive effects. Our results demonstrate that degenerating and painful human IVDs release increased levels of NGF, inflammatory and nociceptive factors ex vivo that induce neuronal plasticity and may actively diffuse to induce neo-innervation and pain in vivo. PMID:24650225

  19. Mesenchymal stem cells attenuate peripheral neuronal degeneration in spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 knockin mice.

    PubMed

    Mieda, Tokue; Suto, Nana; Iizuka, Akira; Matsuura, Serina; Iizuka, Haku; Takagishi, Kenji; Nakamura, Kazuhiro; Hirai, Hirokazu

    2016-03-01

    Spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 (SCA1) is a devastating neurodegenerative disorder in which an abnormally expanded polyglutamine tract is inserted into causative ataxin-1 proteins. We have previously shown that SCA1 knockin (SCA1-KI) mice over 6 months of age exhibit a degeneration of motor neuron axons and their encasing myelin sheaths, as reported in SCA1 patients. We examined whether axon degeneration precedes myelin degeneration or vice versa in SCA1-KI mice and then attempted to mitigate motor neuron degeneration by intrathecally administering mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Temporal examination of the diameters of motor neuron axons and their myelin sheaths revealed a decrease in diameter of the axon but not of the myelin sheaths in SCA1-KI mice as early as 1 month of age, which suggests secondary degeneration of the myelin sheaths. We injected MSCs into the intrathecal space of SCA1-KI mice at 1 month of age, which resulted in a significant suppression of degeneration of both motor neuron axons and myelin sheaths, even 6 months after the MSC injection. Thus, MSCs effectively suppressed peripheral nervous system degeneration in SCA1-KI mice. It has not yet been clarified how clinically administered MSCs exhibit significant therapeutic effects in patients with SCA1. The morphological evidence presented in this current mouse study might explain the mechanisms that underlie the therapeutic effects of MSCs that are observed in patients with SCA1. 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26707550

  20. dnc-1/dynactin 1 knockdown disrupts transport of autophagosomes and induces motor neuron degeneration.

    PubMed

    Ikenaka, Kensuke; Kawai, Kaori; Katsuno, Masahisa; Huang, Zhe; Jiang, Yue-Mei; Iguchi, Yohei; Kobayashi, Kyogo; Kimata, Tsubasa; Waza, Masahiro; Tanaka, Fumiaki; Mori, Ikue; Sobue, Gen

    2013-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive loss of motor neurons. We previously showed that the expression of dynactin 1, an axon motor protein regulating retrograde transport, is markedly reduced in spinal motor neurons of sporadic ALS patients, although the mechanisms by which decreased dynactin 1 levels cause neurodegeneration have yet to be elucidated. The accumulation of autophagosomes in degenerated motor neurons is another key pathological feature of sporadic ALS. Since autophagosomes are cargo of dynein/dynactin complexes and play a crucial role in the turnover of several organelles and proteins, we hypothesized that the quantitative loss of dynactin 1 disrupts the transport of autophagosomes and induces the degeneration of motor neuron. In the present study, we generated a Caenorhabditis elegans model in which the expression of DNC-1, the homolog of dynactin 1, is specifically knocked down in motor neurons. This model exhibited severe motor defects together with axonal and neuronal degeneration. We also observed impaired movement and increased number of autophagosomes in the degenerated neurons. Furthermore, the combination of rapamycin, an activator of autophagy, and trichostatin which facilitates axonal transport dramatically ameliorated the motor phenotype and axonal degeneration of this model. Thus, our results suggest that decreased expression of dynactin 1 induces motor neuron degeneration and that the transport of autophagosomes is a novel and substantial therapeutic target for motor neuron degeneration. PMID:23408943

  1. dnc-1/dynactin 1 Knockdown Disrupts Transport of Autophagosomes and Induces Motor Neuron Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Ikenaka, Kensuke; Kawai, Kaori; Katsuno, Masahisa; Huang, Zhe; Jiang, Yue-Mei; Iguchi, Yohei; Kobayashi, Kyogo; Kimata, Tsubasa; Waza, Masahiro; Tanaka, Fumiaki; Mori, Ikue; Sobue, Gen

    2013-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive loss of motor neurons. We previously showed that the expression of dynactin 1, an axon motor protein regulating retrograde transport, is markedly reduced in spinal motor neurons of sporadic ALS patients, although the mechanisms by which decreased dynactin 1 levels cause neurodegeneration have yet to be elucidated. The accumulation of autophagosomes in degenerated motor neurons is another key pathological feature of sporadic ALS. Since autophagosomes are cargo of dynein/dynactin complexes and play a crucial role in the turnover of several organelles and proteins, we hypothesized that the quantitative loss of dynactin 1 disrupts the transport of autophagosomes and induces the degeneration of motor neuron. In the present study, we generated a Caenorhabditis elegans model in which the expression of DNC-1, the homolog of dynactin 1, is specifically knocked down in motor neurons. This model exhibited severe motor defects together with axonal and neuronal degeneration. We also observed impaired movement and increased number of autophagosomes in the degenerated neurons. Furthermore, the combination of rapamycin, an activator of autophagy, and trichostatin which facilitates axonal transport dramatically ameliorated the motor phenotype and axonal degeneration of this model. Thus, our results suggest that decreased expression of dynactin 1 induces motor neuron degeneration and that the transport of autophagosomes is a novel and substantial therapeutic target for motor neuron degeneration. PMID:23408943

  2. Multiple Independent Oscillatory Networks in the Degenerating Retina

    PubMed Central

    Euler, Thomas; Schubert, Timm

    2015-01-01

    During neuronal degenerative diseases, microcircuits undergo severe structural alterations, leading to remodeling of synaptic connectivity. This can be particularly well observed in the retina, where photoreceptor degeneration triggers rewiring of connections in the retina’s first synaptic layer (e.g., Strettoi et al., 2003; Haq et al., 2014), while the synaptic organization of inner retinal circuits appears to be little affected (O’Brien et al., 2014; Figures 1A,B). Remodeling of (outer) retinal circuits and diminishing light-driven activity due to the loss of functional photoreceptors lead to spontaneous activity that can be observed at different retinal levels (Figure 1C), including the retinal ganglion cells, which display rhythmic spiking activity in the degenerative retina (Margolis et al., 2008; Stasheff, 2008; Menzler and Zeck, 2011; Stasheff et al., 2011). Two networks have been suggested to drive the oscillatory activity in the degenerating retina: a network of remnant cone photoreceptors, rod bipolar cells (RBCs) and horizontal cells in the outer retina (Haq et al., 2014), and the AII amacrine cell-cone bipolar cell network in the inner retina (Borowska et al., 2011). Notably, spontaneous rhythmic activity in the inner retinal network can be triggered in the absence of synaptic remodeling in the outer retina, for example, in the healthy retina after photo-bleaching (Menzler et al., 2014). In addition, the two networks show remarkable differences in their dominant oscillation frequency range as well as in the types and numbers of involved cells (Menzler and Zeck, 2011; Haq et al., 2014). Taken together this suggests that the two networks are self-sustained and can be active independently from each other. However, it is not known if and how they modulate each other. In this mini review, we will discuss: (i) commonalities and differences between these two oscillatory networks as well as possible interaction pathways; (ii) how multiple self-sustained networks may hamper visual restoration strategies employing, for example, microelectronic implants, optogenetics or stem cells, and briefly; and (iii) how the finding of diverse (independent) networks in the degenerative retina may relate to other parts of the neurodegenerative central nervous system. PMID:26617491

  3. Anterograde Degeneration along the Visual Pathway after Optic Nerve Injury

    PubMed Central

    Graham, Stuart L.; Klistorner, Alexander

    2012-01-01

    Purpose To investigate anterograde degenerative changes along the visual pathway in a rat model of optic nerve axotomy. Methods Optic nerve transection was performed in adult Sprague-Dawley rats. Animals were sacrificed at regular time intervals and tissues harvested. Immunoblotting followed by densitometric analysis was used to determine the phosphorylation profile of Akt in the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) and the primary visual cortex (V1). The neuronal cell size and cell density were measured in the dLGN and the V1 using Nissl staining. The prevalence of apoptosis was characterized by terminal deoxynucleotidyl-transferase-mediated biotin-dUTP nick end labelling (TUNEL) histochemistry. Caspase-3 antibodies were also used to identify apoptotic cells. Neurons and astrocytes were detected using NeuN and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), respectively. Results An early and sustained loss of Akt phosphorylation was observed after optic nerve transection in both dLGN and V1. At week one, a decrease in the neuronal cell size (50.54.9 vs 60.35.0 m2, P?=?0.042) and an increase of TUNEL positive cells (7.90.6 vs 1.40.5 102 cells/mm2, P<0.001) were evident in the dLGN but not in V1. A significant decline in neuronal cell number (14.50.1 vs 17.41.3 102 cells/mm2, P?=?0.048), cell size (42.54.3 vs 62.14.7 m2, P?=?0.001) and an increase in apoptotic cells (5.60.5 vs 2.00.4 102 cells/mm2, P<0.001) appeared in V1 initially at one month post-transection. The changes in the visual pathway continued through two months. Both neuronal cells and GFAP-positive glial cells were affected in this anterograde degeneration along the visual pathway. Conclusions Anterograde degeneration along the visual pathway takes place in target relay (LGN) and visual cortex following the optic nerve injury. Apoptosis was observed in both neural and adjacent glial cells. Reduction of Akt phosphorylation preceded cellular and apoptotic changes. PMID:23300590

  4. Membrane time constant as a tool to assess cell degeneration.

    PubMed

    Isokawa, M

    1997-05-01

    Changes in neuronal surface area may be monitored by measuring the plasma membrane capacitance [8]. Membrane time constant (tao m) is given by the product of the membrane resistance (rm) and membrane capacitance (Cm), tao m = rm Cm. Thus, when membrane resistance is kept constant at a steady state (resting), membrane time constant can reflect the size of neuronal surface area. Membrane time constant is the time for the potential to fall from the resting to a fraction (1-l/e), or 63%, of its final value in the charging curve during the application of a small negative current pulse. Negative voltage shift from the resting potential hardly activates any voltage-dependent ion channel, resulting in nominal changes in cell membrane resistance. Although elaborated methods for mathematical models and simulations are available for the electrophysiological assessment of neuron geometry in order to estimate subthreshold potential attenuation during the propagation of synaptically mediated electrical signals, they involve a number of critical assumptions for the convenience to each model, and some of these assumptions are unlikely to be valid. With these restrictive assumptions, very little can be determined about the electronic structure of a neuron beyond the measurement of neuronal membrane resistance and membrane time constant. Alternatively, numerous tracers are available to visualize morphologies of neurons intracellularly and extracellularly. These anatomical methods provide direct and quantitative evidence for neuron geometry; however, they involve tissue processing and a series of chemical reactions, some of which are time- and effort-demanding. The purpose of the present paper is to show that membrane time constant can be effectively used as a tool to assess diminution in cell surface area without involving extensive mathematical theories and/or neuroanatomical techniques. This approach is particularly effective in electrotonically compact cells such as hippocampal neurons. Recent development in the technique of the whole-cell patch clamp recording in the slice preparation yielded longer time constant with better resolution due to the absence of the leak conductance associated with microelectrode impalement. Indeed, when membrane time constant was measured with the whole-cell patch clamp recording technique, it successfully detected the reduction in dendritic arbors (dendritic degeneration) in dentate granule cells in the pilocarpine model of chronic epilepsy, and this finding is supported by the neuroanatomical evidence that was obtained from the same specimen samples. Membrane time constant is an easy-to-measure "passive membrane property" and can be used as a reliable probe by itself for detecting dendritic degeneration or as a tool for decision-making in introducing neuroanatomical technique in combination with slice neurophysiology. PMID:9385072

  5. Altered Knee Joint Mechanics in Simple Compression Associated with Early Cartilage Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Dabiri, Y.; Li, L. P.

    2013-01-01

    The progression of osteoarthritis can be accompanied by depth-dependent changes in the properties of articular cartilage. The objective of the present study was to determine the subsequent alteration in the fluid pressurization in the human knee using a three-dimensional computer model. Only a small compression in the femur-tibia direction was applied to avoid numerical difficulties. The material model for articular cartilages and menisci included fluid, fibrillar and nonfibrillar matrices as distinct constituents. The knee model consisted of distal femur, femoral cartilage, menisci, tibial cartilage, and proximal tibia. Cartilage degeneration was modeled in the high load-bearing region of the medial condyle of the femur with reduced fibrillar and nonfibrillar elastic properties and increased hydraulic permeability. Three case studies were implemented to simulate (1) the onset of cartilage degeneration from the superficial zone, (2) the progression of cartilage degeneration to the middle zone, and (3) the progression of cartilage degeneration to the deep zone. As compared with a normal knee of the same compression, reduced fluid pressurization was observed in the degenerated knee. Furthermore, faster reduction in fluid pressure was observed with the onset of cartilage degeneration in the superficial zone and progression to the middle zone, as compared to progression to the deep zone. On the other hand, cartilage degeneration in any zone would reduce the fluid pressure in all three zones. The shear strains at the cartilage-bone interface were increased when cartilage degeneration was eventually advanced to the deep zone. The present study revealed, at the joint level, altered fluid pressurization and strains with the depth-wise cartilage degeneration. The results also indicated redistribution of stresses within the tissue and relocation of the loading between the tissue matrix and fluid pressure. These results may only be qualitatively interesting due to the small compression considered. PMID:23424607

  6. Diffusion Monte Carlo method with symmetry-constrained variational principle for degenerate excited states

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hipes, Paul G.

    2011-05-01

    Fixed-node diffusion Monte Carlo (FN-DMC) is an accurate and useful method for estimating the wave function and the energy of the quantum ground state of a many-fermion system. However, it has been shown that difficulties with the method may occur when it is applied to a degenerate excited state because the nodal surface of the degenerate trial function is generally insufficient to impose the complete symmetry properties of the trial function on the FN-DMC wave function. As a result, the tiling theorem and the symmetry-constrained variational principle may be violated by FN-DMC when the excited state is degenerate. There are two practical consequences for the study of degenerate excited states: The FN-DMC energy may lie below the energy of the lowest stationary state that transforms according to the same degenerate irreducible representation as the trial function; and the convergence of the FN-DMC energy with improvements in the trial function may not be quadratic. In this paper a diffusion Monte Carlo method for degenerate excited states is presented. It provides a direct generalization of the FN-DMC method, and when applied to the study of degenerate excited states, it has the support of the tiling theorem and the symmetry-constrained variational principle. The method is applied to the lowest degenerate state of a simple test problem in which FN-DMC has been shown to violate both the tiling theorem and the symmetry-constrained variational principle. The numerical results support the assertion that this method for degenerate excited states satisfies both the tiling theorem and the symmetry-constrained variational principle.

  7. Dual-pumped degenerate Kerr oscillator in a silicon nitride microresonator.

    PubMed

    Okawachi, Yoshitomo; Yu, Mengjie; Luke, Kevin; Carvalho, Daniel O; Ramelow, Sven; Farsi, Alessandro; Lipson, Michal; Gaeta, Alexander L

    2015-11-15

    We demonstrate a degenerate parametric oscillator in a silicon nitride microresonator. We use two frequency-detuned pump waves to perform parametric four-wave mixing and operate in the normal group-velocity dispersion regime to produce signal and idler fields that are frequency degenerate. Our theoretical modeling shows that this regime enables generation of bimodal phase states, analogous to the χ(2)-based degenerate OPO. Our system offers potential for realization of CMOS-chip-based coherent optical computing and an all-optical quantum random number generator. PMID:26565851

  8. Theory of degenerate coding and informational parameters of protein coding genes.

    PubMed

    Konopka, A K

    1985-05-01

    The theory of degenerate coding is presented in a way enabling further application to molecular biology. There are two kinds of redundancy of a degenerate code. The first is due to the excess in codon length and the second to the code degeneracy. If the code is asymmetrically degenerate, the second kind of redundancy can be profitable for control of error rate. This control can be performed just by selective synonymous codon usage. Utilisation of the genetic code is partially influenced by this theoretical possibility. In particular the degree of error protectivity is well correlated with deviation from equiprobability in synonymous codon usage. The biological significance of this fact is discussed. PMID:4027279

  9. Dual-pumped degenerate Kerr oscillator in a silicon nitride microresonator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okawachi, Yoshitomo; Yu, Mengjie; Luke, Kevin; Carvalho, Daniel O.; Ramelow, Sven; Farsi, Alessandro; Lipson, Michal; Gaeta, Alexander L.

    2015-11-01

    We demonstrate a degenerate parametric oscillator in a silicon-nitride microresonator. We use two frequency-detuned pump waves to perform parametric four-wave mixing and operate in the normal group-velocity dispersion regime to produce signal and idler fields that are frequency degenerate. Our theoretical modeling shows that this regime enables generation of bimodal phase states, analogous to the \\c{hi}(2)-based degenerate OPO. Our system offers potential for realization of CMOS-chip-based coherent optical computing and an all-optical quantum random number generator.

  10. Initial evolution of supports of solutions of quasilinear parabolic equations with degenerate absorption potential

    SciTech Connect

    Stepanova, Ekaterina V; Shishkov, Andrey E

    2013-03-31

    The propagation of supports of solutions of second-order quasilinear parabolic equations is studied; the equations are of the type of nonstationary diffusion, having semilinear absorption with an absorption potential which degenerates on the initial plane. We find sufficient conditions, which are sharp in a certain sense, on the relationship between the boundary regime and the type of degeneration of the potential to ensure the strong localization of solutions. We also establish a weak localization of solutions for an arbitrary potential which degenerates only on the initial plane. Bibliography: 12 titles.

  11. Models of collective cell spreading with variable cell aspect ratio: A motivation for degenerate diffusion models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simpson, Matthew J.; Baker, Ruth E.; McCue, Scott W.

    2011-02-01

    Continuum diffusion models are often used to represent the collective motion of cell populations. Most previous studies have simply used linear diffusion to represent collective cell spreading, while others found that degenerate nonlinear diffusion provides a better match to experimental cell density profiles. In the cell modeling literature there is no guidance available with regard to which approach is more appropriate for representing the spreading of cell populations. Furthermore, there is no knowledge of particular experimental measurements that can be made to distinguish between situations where these two models are appropriate. Here we provide a link between individual-based and continuum models using a multiscale approach in which we analyze the collective motion of a population of interacting agents in a generalized lattice-based exclusion process. For round agents that occupy a single lattice site, we find that the relevant continuum description of the system is a linear diffusion equation, whereas for elongated rod-shaped agents that occupy L adjacent lattice sites we find that the relevant continuum description is connected to the porous media equation (PME). The exponent in the nonlinear diffusivity function is related to the aspect ratio of the agents. Our work provides a physical connection between modeling collective cell spreading and the use of either the linear diffusion equation or the PME to represent cell density profiles. Results suggest that when using continuum models to represent cell population spreading, we should take care to account for variations in the cell aspect ratio because different aspect ratios lead to different continuum models.

  12. Conical refraction in a degenerated two-crystal cascade

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peet, V.

    2016-01-01

    When a collimated light beam is passed consequently along the optic axes of two identical biaxial crystals, the conical refraction produces in the focal image plane a specific light pattern consisting of a ring and a central spot. The ring is formed due to the additive action of two crystals, while the spot results from the reversed conical refraction in such a degenerated cascade arrangement. The relative intensity of these two components depends on the azimuth angle between the orientations of the crystals about the beam axis. It is shown that this dependence arises due to the interference of pairs of waves produced by conical refraction in two crystals. If a part of these waves is blocked by polarization selection of beam components, the dependence of the light pattern on the azimuth angle vanishes. In this case, the outgoing light profile consists of a ring and a central spot with fixed intensities so that the total beam power is divided equally between these two components. Depending on the applied polarization, the central spot appears either as a restored input beam or a charge-two optical vortex. The results of numerical simulations of the effect are in a very good agreement with the experimental observations.

  13. The CERAD Neuropsychological Battery in Patients with Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Haanp, Ramona M.; Suhonen, Noora-Maria; Hartikainen, Pivi; Koivisto, Anne M.; Moilanen, Virpi; Herukka, Sanna-Kaisa; Hnninen, Tuomo; Remes, Anne M.

    2015-01-01

    Background/Aims The diagnosis of frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) is based on neuropsychological examination in addition to clinical symptoms and brain imaging. There is no simple, validated, cognitive tool available in screening for FTLD. The Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease neuropsychological battery (CERAD-NB) was originally devised to identify the early cognitive changes related to Alzheimer's disease (AD). Our aim was to investigate the utility of the CERAD-NB in FTLD. Methods Patients with FTLD (n = 95) and AD (n = 90) were assessed with the CERAD-NB, Trail Making Test parts A and B and single-letter Phonemic Fluency. Results FTLD patients were more severely impaired in the Verbal Fluency subtest in the CERAD-NB and Trail Making Test part A compared to AD patients. In addition, AD patients were more impaired in memory subtests compared to FTLD patients. Conclusion The CERAD-NB may be a useful tool in screening for FTLD. Impaired performance in Verbal Fluency with moderately well-preserved Delayed Recall and Memory Tests may help in identifying patients with probable FTLD and discriminating FTLD from AD. Adding the Trail Making Test to the battery might enhance its value as a screening instrument for FTLD. PMID:25999981

  14. Age-related macular degeneration: experimental and emerging treatments

    PubMed Central

    Hubschman, Jean Pierre; Reddy, Shantan; Schwartz, Steven D

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: This essay reviews the experimental treatments and new imaging modalities that are currently being explored by investigators to help treat patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Design: Interpretative essay. Methods: Literature review and interpretation. Results: Experimental treatments to preserve vision in patients with exudative AMD include blocking vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), binding VEGF, and modulating the VEGF receptors. Investigators are also attempting to block signal transduction with receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Experimental treatments for non-exudative AMD include agents that target inflammation, oxidative stress, and implement immune-modulation. The effectiveness of these newer pharmacologic agents has the potential to grow exponentially when used in combination with new and improved imaging modalities that can help identify disease earlier and follow treatment response more precisely. Conclusion: With a better understanding, at the genetic and molecular level, of AMD and the development of superior imaging modalities, investigators are able to offer treatment options that may offer unprecedented visual gains while reducing the need for repetitive treatments. PMID:19668561

  15. White matter degeneration in schizophrenia: a comparative diffusion tensor analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ingalhalikar, Madhura A.; Andreasen, Nancy C.; Kim, Jinsuh; Alexander, Andrew L.; Magnotta, Vincent A.

    2010-03-01

    Schizophrenia is a serious and disabling mental disorder. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) studies performed on schizophrenia have demonstrated white matter degeneration either due to loss of myelination or deterioration of fiber tracts although the areas where the changes occur are variable across studies. Most of the population based studies analyze the changes in schizophrenia using scalar indices computed from the diffusion tensor such as fractional anisotropy (FA) and relative anisotropy (RA). The scalar measures may not capture the complete information from the diffusion tensor. In this paper we have applied the RADTI method on a group of 9 controls and 9 patients with schizophrenia. The RADTI method converts the tensors to log-Euclidean space where a linear regression model is applied and hypothesis testing is performed between the control and patient groups. Results show that there is a significant difference in the anisotropy between patients and controls especially in the parts of forceps minor, superior corona radiata, anterior limb of internal capsule and genu of corpus callosum. To check if the tensor analysis gives a better idea of the changes in anisotropy, we compared the results with voxelwise FA analysis as well as voxelwise geodesic anisotropy (GA) analysis.

  16. The ELM Survey. VI. Eleven New Double Degenerates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gianninas, A.; Kilic, Mukremin; Brown, Warren R.; Canton, Paul; Kenyon, Scott J.

    2015-10-01

    We present the discovery of 11 new double degenerate systems containing extremely low-mass white dwarfs (ELM WDs). Our radial velocity observations confirm that all of the targets have orbital periods ?slant 1 day. We perform spectroscopic fits and provide a complete set of physical and binary parameters. We review and compare recent evolutionary calculations and estimate that the systematic uncertainty in our mass determinations due to differences in the evolutionary models is small (? 0.01 M?). Five of the new systems will merge due to gravitational wave radiation within a Hubble time, bringing the total number of merger systems found in the ELM Survey to 38. We examine the ensemble properties of the current sample of ELM WD binaries, including the period distribution as a function of effective temperature, and the implications for the future evolution of these systems. We also revisit the empirical boundaries of instability strip of ELM WDs and identify new pulsating ELM WD candidates. Finally, we consider the kinematic properties of our sample of ELM WDs and estimate that a significant fraction of the WDs from the ELM Survey are members of the Galactic halo. Based on observations obtained at the MMT Observatory, a joint facility of the Smithsonian Institution and the University of Arizona.

  17. CSF neurofilament light chain reflects corticospinal tract degeneration in ALS

    PubMed Central

    Menke, Ricarda A L; Gray, Elizabeth; Lu, Ching-Hua; Kuhle, Jens; Talbot, Kevin; Malaspina, Andrea; Turner, Martin R

    2015-01-01

    Objective Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is sensitive to white matter tract pathology. A core signature involving the corticospinal tracts (CSTs) has been identified in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Raised neurofilament light chain protein (NfL) in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is thought to reflect axonal damage in a range of neurological disorders. The relationship between these two measures was explored. Methods CSF and serum NfL concentrations and DTI acquired at 3 Tesla on the same day were obtained from ALS patients (n = 25 CSF, 40 serum) and healthy, age-similar controls (n = 17 CSF, 25 serum). Within-group correlations between NfL and DTI measures of microstructural integrity in major white matter tracts (CSTs, superior longitudinal fasciculi [SLF], and corpus callosum) were performed using tract-based spatial statistics. Results NfL levels were higher in patients compared to controls. CSF levels correlated with clinical upper motor neuron burden and rate of disease progression. Higher NfL levels were significantly associated with lower DTI fractional anisotropy and increased radial diffusivity in the CSTs of ALS patients, but not in controls. Interpretation Elevated CSF and serum NfL is, in part, a result of CST degeneration in ALS. This highlights the wider potential for combining neurochemical and neuroimaging-based biomarkers in neurological disease. PMID:26273687

  18. Automatic age-related macular degeneration detection and staging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Grinsven, Mark J. J. P.; Lechanteur, Yara T. E.; van de Ven, Johannes P. H.; van Ginneken, Bram; Theelen, Thomas; Snchez, Clara I.

    2013-03-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a degenerative disorder of the central part of the retina, which mainly affects older people and leads to permanent loss of vision in advanced stages of the disease. AMD grading of non-advanced AMD patients allows risk assessment for the development of advanced AMD and enables timely treatment of patients, to prevent vision loss. AMD grading is currently performed manually on color fundus images, which is time consuming and expensive. In this paper, we propose a supervised classification method to distinguish patients at high risk to develop advanced AMD from low risk patients and provide an exact AMD stage determination. The method is based on the analysis of the number and size of drusen on color fundus images, as drusen are the early characteristics of AMD. An automatic drusen detection algorithm is used to detect all drusen. A weighted histogram of the detected drusen is constructed to summarize the drusen extension and size and fed into a random forest classifier in order to separate low risk from high risk patients and to allow exact AMD stage determination. Experiments showed that the proposed method achieved similar performance as human observers in distinguishing low risk from high risk AMD patients, obtaining areas under the Receiver Operating Characteristic curve of 0.929 and 0.934. A weighted kappa agreement of 0.641 and 0.622 versus two observers were obtained for AMD stage evaluation. Our method allows for quick and reliable AMD staging at low costs.

  19. Impact of age related macular degeneration on quality of life

    PubMed Central

    Hassell, J B; Lamoureux, E L; Keeffe, J E

    2006-01-01

    Aims To describe the impact of age related macular degeneration (AMD) on quality of life and explore the association with vision, health, and demographic variables. Methods Adult participants diagnosed with AMD and with impaired vision (visual acuity <6/12) were assessed with the Impact of Vision Impairment (IVI) questionnaire. Participants rated the extent that vision restricted participation in activities affecting quality of life and completed the Short Form General Health Survey (SF?12) and a sociodemographic questionnaire. Results The mean age of the 106 participants (66% female) was 83.6?years (range 6498). One quarter had mild vision impairment, (VA<6/126/18) and 75% had moderate or severely impaired vision. Participants reported from at least a little concern on 23 of the 32 IVI items including reading, emotional health, mobility, and participation in relevant activities. Those with mild and moderate vision impairment were similarly affected but significantly different from those with severe vision loss (p<0.05). Distance vision was associated with IVI scores but not age, sex, or duration of vision loss. Conclusion AMD affects many quality of life related activities and not just those related to reading. Referral to low vision care services should be considered for people with mild vision loss and worse. PMID:16622089

  20. Axonal Degeneration in Dental Pulp Precedes Human Primary Teeth Exfoliation.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, K; Lovera, M; Schmachtenberg, O; Couve, E

    2015-10-01

    The dental pulp in human primary teeth is densely innervated by a plethora of nerve endings at the coronal pulp-dentin interface. This study analyzed how the physiological root resorption (PRR) process affects dental pulp innervation before exfoliation of primary teeth. Forty-four primary canine teeth, classified into 3 defined PRR stages (early, middle, and advanced) were fixed and demineralized. Longitudinal cryosections of each tooth were stained for immunohistochemical and quantitative analysis of dental pulp nerve fibers and associated components with confocal and electron microscopy. During PRR, axonal degeneration was prominent and progressive in a Wallerian-like scheme, comprising nerve fiber bundles and nerve endings within the coronal and root pulp. Neurofilament fragmentation increased significantly during PRR progression and was accompanied by myelin degradation and a progressive loss of myelinated axons. Myelin sheath degradation involved activation of autophagic activity by Schwann cells to remove myelin debris. These cells expressed a sequence of responses comprising dedifferentiation, proliferative activity, GAP-43 overexpression, and Büngner band formation. During the advanced PRR stage, increased immune cell recruitment within the dental pulp and major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II upregulation by Schwann cells characterized an inflammatory condition associated with the denervation process in preexfoliative primary teeth. The ensuing loss of dental pulp axons is likely to be responsible for the progressive reduction of sensory function of the dental pulp during preexfoliative stages. PMID:26149320

  1. Smooth pursuit eye movements in patients with macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Shanidze, Natela; Fusco, Giovanni; Potapchuk, Elena; Heinen, Stephen; Verghese, Preeti

    2016-01-01

    Currently, there are no quantitative studies of smooth pursuit, a behavior attributed to the fovea, in individuals with macular degeneration (MD). We hypothesize that pursuit in MD patients depends on the relative positions of the scotoma and target trajectory. We tested this hypothesis with a scanning laser ophthalmoscope (SLO), which allows for direct visualization of the target on the damaged retina. Monocular microperimetry and eye movements were assessed in eleven individuals with differing degrees of MD. Observers were asked to visually track a 1.7° target that moved in one of eight radial directions at 5°/s–6°/s. Consistent with our hypothesis, pursuit metrics depended on whether the target moved into or out of scotoma. Pursuit gains decreased with increasing scotoma extent in the target's heading direction (p = 0.017). Latencies were higher when the scotoma was present along the target trajectory (in either starting or heading directions, p < 0.001). Furthermore, an analysis of retinal position shows that targets fell on the fixational locus nearly 50% of the time. The results suggest that MD patients are capable of smooth pursuit eye movements, but are limited by target trajectory and scotoma characteristics. PMID:26830707

  2. Pachychoroid neovasculopathy and age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Miyake, Masahiro; Ooto, Sotaro; Yamashiro, Kenji; Takahashi, Ayako; Yoshikawa, Munemitsu; Akagi-Kurashige, Yumiko; Ueda-Arakawa, Naoko; Oishi, Akio; Nakanishi, Hideo; Tamura, Hiroshi; Tsujikawa, Akitaka; Yoshimura, Nagahisa

    2015-01-01

    Pachychoroid neovasculopathy is a recently proposed clinical entity of choroidal neovascularization (CNV). As it often masquerades as neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD), it is currently controversial whether pachychoroid neovasculopathy should be distinguished from neovascular AMD. This is because its characteristics have yet to be well described. To estimate the relative prevalence of pachychoroid neovasculopathy in comparison with neovascular AMD and to investigate the phenotypic/genetic differences of the two diseases, we evaluated 200 consecutive Japanese patients who agreed to participate in the genetic study and diagnosed with pachychoroid neovasculopathy or neovascular AMD. Pachychoroid neovasculopathy was observed in 39 individuals (19.5%), which corresponds to one fourth of neovascular AMD. Patients with pachychoroid neovasculopathy were significantly younger (p?=?5.1??10?5) and showed a greater subfoveal choroidal thickness (p?=?3.4??10?14). Their genetic susceptibility to AMD was significantly lower than that of neovascular AMD; ARMS2 rs10490924 (p?=?0.029), CFH rs800292 (p?=?0.013) and genetic risk score calculated from 11 AMD susceptibility genes (p?=?3.8??10?3). Current results implicate that the etiologies of the two conditions must be different. Thus, it will be necessary to distinguish these two conditions in future studies. PMID:26542071

  3. Biomarkers of AAA progression. Part 1: extracellular matrix degeneration.

    PubMed

    Hellenthal, Femke A M V I; Buurman, Willem A; Wodzig, Will K W H; Schurink, Geert Willem H

    2009-07-01

    Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is an important health problem. Elective surgical treatment is recommended on the basis of an individual's risk of rupture, which is predicted by AAA diameter. However, the natural history of AAA differs between patients and a reliable and individual predictor of AAA progression (growth and expansion rates) has not been established. Several circulating biomarkers are candidates for an AAA diagnostic tool. However, they have yet to meet the triad of biomarker criteria: biological plausibility, correlation with AAA progression, and prediction of treatment effect on disease outcome. Circulating levels of markers of extracellular matrix degeneration, such as elastin peptides, aminoterminal propeptide of type III procollagen, elastase-alpha1-antitrypsin complexes, matrix metalloproteinase 9, cystatin C, plasmin-antiplasmin complexes and tissue plasminogen activator, have been correlated with AAA progression and have biological plausibility. Although studies of these markers have shown promising results, they have not yet led to a clinically applicable biomarker. In future studies, adjustment for initial AAA size, smoking history and the measurement error for determination of AAA size, among other variables, should be taken into account. A large, prospective, standardized, follow-up study will be needed to investigate multiple circulating biomarkers for their potential role in the prediction of AAA progression, followed by a study to investigate the effect of treatment on the circulating levels of biomarkers. PMID:19468292

  4. Genetic & Neuronanatomic Associations in Sporadic Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    McMillan, Corey T.; Toledo, Jon B.; Avants, Brian B.; Cook, Philip A.; Wood, Elisabeth M.; Suh, Eunran; Irwin, David J.; Powers, John; Olm, Christopher; Elman, Lauren; McCluskey, Leo; Schellenberg, Gerard D.; Lee, Virginia M.-Y.; Trojanowski, John Q.; Van Deerlin, Vivianna M.; Grossman, Murray

    2014-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies have identified SNPs that are sensitive for tau or TDP-43 pathology in frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). Neuroimaging analyses have revealed distinct distributions of disease in FTLD patients with genetic mutations. However, genetic influences on neuroanatomical structure in sporadic FTLD have not been assessed. In this report we use novel multivariate tools, eigenanatomy and sparse canonical correlation analysis (SCCAN), to identify associations between SNPs and neuroanatomical structure in sporadic FTLD. MRI analyses revealed that rs8070723 (MAPT) was associated with grey matter variance in the temporal cortex. DTI analyses revealed that rs1768208 (MOBP), rs646776 (near SORT1) and rs5848 (PGRN) were associated with white matter variance in the midbrain and superior longitudinal fasciculus. In an independent autopsy series we observed that rs8070723 and rs1768208 conferred significant risk of tau pathology relative to TDP-43, and rs646776 conferred increased risk of TDP-43 pathology relative to tau. Identified brain regions and SNPs may help provide an in vivo screen for underlying pathology in FTLD and contribute to our understanding of sporadic FTLD. PMID:24373676

  5. Gene therapy of inherited retinal degenerations: prospects and challenges.

    PubMed

    Trapani, Ivana; Banfi, Sandro; Simonelli, Francesca; Surace, Enrico M; Auricchio, Alberto

    2015-04-01

    Because of its favorable anatomical and immunological characteristics, the eye has been at the forefront of translational gene therapy. Dozens of promising proofs of concept have been obtained in animal models of inherited retinal degenerations (IRDs), and some of them have been relayed to the clinic. The results from the first clinical trials for a congenital form of blindness have generated great interest and have demonstrated the safety and efficacy of intraocular administrations of viral vectors in humans. However, this progress has also generated new questions and posed challenges that need to be addressed to further expand the applicability of gene therapy in the eye, including safe delivery of viral vectors to the outer retina, treatment of dominant IRDs as well as of IRDs caused by mutations in large genes, and, finally, selection of the appropriate IRDs and patients to maximize the efficacy of gene transfer. This review summarizes the strategies that are currently being exploited to overcome these challenges and drive the clinical development of retinal gene therapy. PMID:25762209

  6. Degenerate Quasicrystal of Hard Triangular Bipyramids Stabilized by Entropic Forces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haji-Akbari, Amir; Engel, Michael; Glotzer, Sharon

    2012-02-01

    The assembly of hard polyhedra into novel ordered structures has recently received much attention. Here we focus on triangular bipyramids (TBPs)- i.e. dimers of hard tetrahedra- which pack densely in a simple triclinic crystal with two particles per unit cell [1]. This packing is referred to as the TBP crystal. We show that hard TBPs do not form this densest packing in simulation. Instead, they assemble into a different, far more complicated structure, a dodecagonal quasicrystal, which, in the level of monomers, is identical to the quasicrystal recently discovered in the hard tetrahedron system [2], but the way that tetrahedra pair into TBPs in the nearest neighbor network is random, making it the first degenerate quasicrystal reported in the literature [3]. This notion of degeneracy is in the level of decorating individual tiles and is different from the degeneracy of a quasiperiodic random tiling arising from phason flips [4]. The (3.4.3^2.4) approximant of the quasicrystal is shown to be more stable than the TBP crystal at densities below 79.7%.[4pt] [1] Chen ER, Engel M, Sharon SC, Disc. Comp. Geom. 44:253 (2010).[0pt] [2] Haji-Akbari A, Engel M, et al. Nature 462:773 (2009).[0pt] [3] Haji-Akbari A, Engel M, Glotzer SC, arXiv:1106.5561 [PRL, in press].[0pt] [4] Elser V, PRL 54: 1730 (1985)

  7. Donor and acceptor concentrations in degenerate InN

    SciTech Connect

    Look, D.C.; Lu, H.; Schaff, W.J.; Jasinski, J.; Liliental-Weber, Z.

    2002-01-28

    A formalism is presented to determine donor (N{sub D}) and acceptor (N{sub A}) concentrations in wurtzitic InN characterized by degenerate carrier concentration (n) and mobility ({mu}). The theory includes scattering not only by charged point defects and impurities, but also by charged threading dislocations, of concentration N{sub dis}. For an 0.45-{micro}m-thick InN layer grown on Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} by molecular beam epitaxy, having N{sub dis} = 5 x 10{sup 10} cm{sup -2}, determined by transmission electron microscopy, n(20 K) = 3.5 x 10{sup 18} cm{sup -3}, and {mu}(20 K) = 1055 cm{sup 2}/V-s, determined by Hall-effect measurements, the fitted values are N{sub D} = 4.7 x 10{sup 18} cm{sup -3} and N{sub A} = 1.2 x 10{sup 18} cm{sup -3}. The identities of the donors and acceptors are not known, although a comparison of N{sub D} with analytical data, and also with calculations of defect formation energies, suggests that a potential candidate for the dominant donor is H.

  8. Seven new loci associated with age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Fritsche, Lars G; Chen, Wei; Schu, Matthew; Yaspan, Brian L; Yu, Yi; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Zack, Donald J; Arakawa, Satoshi; Cipriani, Valentina; Ripke, Stephan; Igo, Robert P; Buitendijk, Gabrille H S; Sim, Xueling; Weeks, Daniel E; Guymer, Robyn H; Merriam, Joanna E; Francis, Peter J; Hannum, Gregory; Agarwal, Anita; Armbrecht, Ana Maria; Audo, Isabelle; Aung, Tin; Barile, Gaetano R; Benchaboune, Mustapha; Bird, Alan C; Bishop, Paul N; Branham, Kari E; Brooks, Matthew; Brucker, Alexander J; Cade, William H; Cain, Melinda S; Campochiaro, Peter A; Chan, Chi-Chao; Cheng, Ching-Yu; Chew, Emily Y; Chin, Kimberly A; Chowers, Itay; Clayton, David G; Cojocaru, Radu; Conley, Yvette P; Cornes, Belinda K; Daly, Mark J; Dhillon, Baljean; Edwards, Albert O; Evangelou, Evangelos; Fagerness, Jesen; Ferreyra, Henry A; Friedman, James S; Geirsdottir, Asbjorg; George, Ronnie J; Gieger, Christian; Gupta, Neel; Hagstrom, Stephanie A; Harding, Simon P; Haritoglou, Christos; Heckenlively, John R; Holz, Frank G; Hughes, Guy; Ioannidis, John P A; Ishibashi, Tatsuro; Joseph, Peronne; Jun, Gyungah; Kamatani, Yoichiro; Katsanis, Nicholas; N Keilhauer, Claudia; Khan, Jane C; Kim, Ivana K; Kiyohara, Yutaka; Klein, Barbara E K; Klein, Ronald; Kovach, Jaclyn L; Kozak, Igor; Lee, Clara J; Lee, Kristine E; Lichtner, Peter; Lotery, Andrew J; Meitinger, Thomas; Mitchell, Paul; Mohand-Sad, Saddek; Moore, Anthony T; Morgan, Denise J; Morrison, Margaux A; Myers, Chelsea E; Naj, Adam C; Nakamura, Yusuke; Okada, Yukinori; Orlin, Anton; Ortube, M Carolina; Othman, Mohammad I; Pappas, Chris; Park, Kyu Hyung; Pauer, Gayle J T; Peachey, Neal S; Poch, Olivier; Priya, Rinki Ratna; Reynolds, Robyn; Richardson, Andrea J; Ripp, Raymond; Rudolph, Guenther; Ryu, Euijung; Sahel, Jos-Alain; Schaumberg, Debra A; Scholl, Hendrik P N; Schwartz, Stephen G; Scott, William K; Shahid, Humma; Sigurdsson, Haraldur; Silvestri, Giuliana; Sivakumaran, Theru A; Smith, R Theodore; Sobrin, Lucia; Souied, Eric H; Stambolian, Dwight E; Stefansson, Hreinn; Sturgill-Short, Gwen M; Takahashi, Atsushi; Tosakulwong, Nirubol; Truitt, Barbara J; Tsironi, Evangelia E; Uitterlinden, Andr G; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Vijaya, Lingam; Vingerling, Johannes R; Vithana, Eranga N; Webster, Andrew R; Wichmann, H-Erich; Winkler, Thomas W; Wong, Tien Y; Wright, Alan F; Zelenika, Diana; Zhang, Ming; Zhao, Ling; Zhang, Kang; Klein, Michael L; Hageman, Gregory S; Lathrop, G Mark; Stefansson, Kari; Allikmets, Rando; Baird, Paul N; Gorin, Michael B; Wang, Jie Jin; Klaver, Caroline C W; Seddon, Johanna M; Pericak-Vance, Margaret A; Iyengar, Sudha K; Yates, John R W; Swaroop, Anand; Weber, Bernhard H F; Kubo, Michiaki; Deangelis, Margaret M; Lveillard, Thierry; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Haines, Jonathan L; Farrer, Lindsay A; Heid, Iris M; Abecasis, Gonalo R

    2013-04-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a common cause of blindness in older individuals. To accelerate the understanding of AMD biology and help design new therapies, we executed a collaborative genome-wide association study, including >17,100 advanced AMD cases and >60,000 controls of European and Asian ancestry. We identified 19 loci associated at P < 5 10(-8). These loci show enrichment for genes involved in the regulation of complement activity, lipid metabolism, extracellular matrix remodeling and angiogenesis. Our results include seven loci with associations reaching P < 5 10(-8) for the first time, near the genes COL8A1-FILIP1L, IER3-DDR1, SLC16A8, TGFBR1, RAD51B, ADAMTS9 and B3GALTL. A genetic risk score combining SNP genotypes from all loci showed similar ability to distinguish cases and controls in all samples examined. Our findings provide new directions for biological, genetic and therapeutic studies of AMD. PMID:23455636

  9. Nearly degenerate electron distributions and superluminal radiation densities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tomaschitz, Roman

    2010-02-01

    Polylogarithmic fugacity expansions of the partition function, the caloric and thermal equations of state, and the specific heat of fermionic power-law distributions are derived in the nearly degenerate low-temperature/high-density quantum regime. The spectral functions of an ultra-relativistic electron plasma are obtained by averaging the tachyonic radiation densities of inertial electrons with Fermi power-laws, whose entropy is shown to be extensive and stable. The averaged radiation densities are put to test by performing tachyonic cascade fits to the γ-ray spectrum of the TeV blazar Markarian 421 in a low and high emission state. Estimates of the thermal electron plasma in this active galactic nucleus are extracted from the spectral fits, such as temperature, number count, and internal energy. The tachyonic cascades reproduce the quiescent as well as a burst spectrum of the blazar obtained with imaging atmospheric Cherenkov detectors. Double-logarithmic plots of the differential tachyon flux exhibit intrinsic spectral curvature, caused by the Boltzmann factor of the electron gas.

  10. Seven New Loci Associated with Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a common cause of blindness in older individuals. To accelerate understanding of AMD biology and help design new therapies, we executed a collaborative genomewide association study, examining >17,100 advanced AMD cases and >60,000 controls of European and Asian ancestry. We identified 19 genomic loci associated with AMD with p<5×10−8 and enriched for genes involved in regulation of complement activity, lipid metabolism, extracellular matrix remodeling and angiogenesis. Our results include 7 loci reaching p<5×10−8 for the first time, near the genes COL8A1/FILIP1L, IER3/DDR1, SLC16A8, TGFBR1, RAD51B, ADAMTS9/MIR548A2, and B3GALTL. A genetic risk score combining SNPs from all loci displayed similar good ability to distinguish cases and controls in all samples examined. Our findings provide new directions for biological, genetic and therapeutic studies of AMD. PMID:23455636

  11. Cadmium exposure and age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Kim, Myung Hun; Zhao, Di; Cho, Juhee; Guallar, Eliseo

    2016-03-01

    Cadmium (Cd) has been proposed as a risk factor for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), but the association between Cd exposure and AMD risk in large population studies is unknown. This study evaluated the association of Cd exposure with AMD in a large representative sample of Korean men and women. This was a cross-sectional study of 3865 Korean adults ?40 years of age who participated in the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES) during 2008-2011. Cd concentrations in whole blood were measured by graphite-furnace atomic absorption spectrometry. The presence of AMD was determined in digital non-mydriatic fundus photographs. Cd levels were higher in participants with AMD compared with those without AMD (1.3 vs 1.1??g/l, respectively, P<0.001). In fully adjusted models, the odds ratio for AMD comparing the highest with the lowest Cd quartiles was 1.92 (95% CI=1.08-3.39; P for trend 0.029). In restricted cubic spline models, the association between Cd and AMD was approximately linear, with no evidence of threshold effects. Blood Cd concentrations were independently associated with the prevalence of AMD. If the association is proven causal, population-based preventive strategies to decrease Cd exposure could reduce the population burden of AMD. PMID:25388812

  12. Pathogenesis of progressive rod-cone degeneration in miniature poodles

    SciTech Connect

    Aguirre, G.; Alligood, J.; O'Brien, P.; Buyukmihci, N.

    1982-11-01

    Visual cell pathologic changes and outer segment renewal were investigated in miniature poodles with progressive rod-cone degeneration. Early in this disease, visual cells in the posterior pole and equatorial regions show outer segment lamellar disorientation and vesicular profiles. Visual cells are normal in the periphery. Outer segment renewal determined after intravitreal injection of /sup 3/H-leucine was abnormally slower in affected animals than in controls. This renewal abnormality was similar in structurally normal and diseased photoreceptors, suggesting that the renewal defect is the earliest recognizable abnormality in the disease. The pigment epithelium was normal; the presence and density of pigment did not appear to affect the extent and severity of the disease or modify the abnormal renewal rate. As the disease progressed, photoreceptor outer segments were lost, and the remaining diminutive photoreceptors accumulated label in the inner segment and perinuclear zones. Sodium dodecyl sulfate gel electrophoresis of crude rod outer segment preparations showed no differences in opsin synthesis between normal and affected retinas early in the disease, but opsin synthesis decreased in the late stage of the disease.

  13. Age-Related Macular Degeneration: A Scientometric Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Ramin, Shahrokh; Soheilian, Masoud; Habibi, Gholamreza; Ghazavi, Roghayeh; Gharebaghi, Reza; Heidary, Fatemeh

    2015-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) is a major cause of central blindness among working aged adults across the world. Systematic research planning on any subject, including ARMD is in need of solid data regarding previous efforts in this field and to identify the gaps in the research. This study aimed to elucidate the most important trends, directions, and gap in this subject. The data extracted from the Institute for Scientific Information were used to perform a bibliometric analysis of the scientific productions (19932013) about ARMD. Specific parameters related to ARMD were analyzed to obtain a view of the topics structure, history, and document relationships. Additionally, the trends and authors in the most influential publications were analyzed. The number of articles in this field was found constantly increasing. Most highly cited articles addressed genetic epidemiology and clinical research topics in this field. During the past 3 years, there has been a trend toward biomarker research. Through performing the first scientometric survey on ARMD research, we analyzed the characteristics of papers and the trends in scientific production. We also identified some of the critical gaps in the current research efforts that would help in large-scale research strategic planning. PMID:26060829

  14. Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Age-Related Macular Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Souied, Eric H; Aslam, Tariq; Garcia-Layana, Alfredo; Holz, Frank G; Leys, Anita; Silva, Rufino; Delcourt, Ccile

    2015-12-01

    Against a background of considerable epidemiological and other evidence implicating omega-3 fatty acids in the prevention of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the negative results of the Age-Related Disease Study 2 (AREDS2) were unexpected. The possibility that the design, setting, intake or subjects of AREDS2 may not have permitted the prophylactic potential of omega-3 to be adequately demonstrated is considered. Epidemiological studies had indicated potential preventative effects of omega-3, and an earlier randomised prospective study (NAT2) showed that patients who achieved high red blood cell membrane EPA/DHA (eicosapentaenoic acid/docosahexaenoic acid) levels were significantly protected against AMD compared with those with permanently low EPA/DHA levels. Various methodological differences between these studies are considered. NAT2 included a true placebo group, whereas control subjects in AREDS2 received a nutritional formula already found to be effective in AREDS1, but no placebo for DHA/EPA supplementation. Differences in the handling of non-compliant subjects and the formulation of the test formulations are considered. Given these considerations, and other lines of evidence from laboratory and clinical studies, closing the chapter on omega-3 in AMD prevention may be premature. PMID:26610051

  15. Cerebellar cortical degeneration in cattle caused by Solanum kwebense.

    PubMed

    van der Lugt, Jaco J; Bastianello, Stella S; van Ederen, Anne Marie; van Wilpe, Erna

    2010-08-01

    The pathology of maldronksiekte, a sporadic neurological disorder of cattle caused by the ingestion of the plant Solanum kwebense in certain parts of South Africa, was studied in three chronic field cases. There was loss of cerebellar Purkinje cells with the remaining neurons either swollen or shrunken and showing degeneration and necrosis. Ultrastructurally, neurons with a swollen perikaryon showed depletion and empty dilated cisternae of granular endoplasmic reticulum. In a few Purkinje cells, the cytoplasm contained small numbers of lamellar and membranous bodies. In the shrunken neurons, the highly condensed cytoplasm contained distended Golgi saccules, dense clusters of granular endoplasmic reticulum and swollen mitochondria. Lectin histochemistry revealed that the cytoplasmic vacuoles in some distended Purkinje cells stained strongly with Canavalia ensiformis (ConA) agglutinin and weakly with Triticum vulgaris (WGA) and succinyl-WGA (S-WGA) agglutinin. The pattern of lectin binding only partially agreed with that reported in calves poisoned with Solanum fastigiatum, causing a presumed glycolipid storage disease. Apoptosis was not detected in neurons using a commercial deoxyuridine triphosphate nick-end labelling (TUNEL) method. The pathogenesis of the cerebellar lesions is unknown but the intoxication may have resulted from the inability of neurons, in particular Purkinje cells, to metabolise a plant toxin or cellular substrate. PMID:19457687

  16. Aberrant Activity in Degenerated Retinas Revealed by Electrical Imaging.

    PubMed

    Zeck, Günther

    2016-01-01

    In this review, I present and discuss the current understanding of aberrant electrical activity found in the ganglion cell layer (GCL) of rod-degenerated (rd) mouse retinas. The reported electrophysiological properties revealed by electrical imaging using high-density microelectrode arrays can be subdivided between spiking activity originating from retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and local field potentials (LFPs) reflecting strong trans-membrane currents within the GCL. RGCs in rd retinas show increased and rhythmic spiking compared to age-matched wild-type retinas. Fundamental spiking frequencies range from 5 to 15 Hz in various mouse models. The rhythmic RGC spiking is driven by a presynaptic network comprising AII amacrine and bipolar cells. In the healthy retina this rhythm-generating circuit is inhibited by photoreceptor input. A unique physiological feature of rd retinas is rhythmic LFP manifested as spatially-restricted low-frequency (5-15 Hz) voltage changes. Their spatiotemporal characterization revealed propagation and correlation with RGC spiking. LFPs rely on gap-junctional coupling and are shaped by glycinergic and by GABAergic transmission. The aberrant RGC spiking and LFPs provide a simple readout of the functionality of the remaining retinal circuitry which can be used in the development of improved vision restoration strategies. PMID:26903810

  17. Clinical characteristics and current therapies for inherited retinal degenerations.

    PubMed

    Sahel, José-Alain; Marazova, Katia; Audo, Isabelle

    2015-02-01

    Inherited retinal degenerations (IRDs) encompass a large group of clinically and genetically heterogeneous diseases that affect approximately 1 in 3000 people (>2 million people worldwide) (Bessant DA, Ali RR, Bhattacharya SS. 2001. Molecular genetics and prospects for therapy of the inherited retinal dystrophies. Curr Opin Genet Dev 11: 307-316.). IRDs may be inherited as Mendelian traits or through mitochondrial DNA, and may affect the entire retina (e.g., rod-cone dystrophy, also known as retinitis pigmentosa, cone dystrophy, cone-rod dystrophy, choroideremia, Usher syndrome, and Bardet-Bidel syndrome) or be restricted to the macula (e.g., Stargardt disease, Best disease, and Sorsby fundus dystrophy), ultimately leading to blindness. IRDs are a major cause of severe vision loss, with profound impact on patients and society. Although IRDs remain untreatable today, significant progress toward therapeutic strategies for IRDs has marked the past two decades. This progress has been based on better understanding of the pathophysiological pathways of these diseases and on technological advances. PMID:25324231

  18. Ocular Surface Temperature in Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Sodi, Andrea; Giacomelli, Giovanni; Corvi, Andrea; Menchini, Ugo

    2014-01-01

    Background. The aim of this study is to investigate the ocular thermographic profiles in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) eyes and age-matched controls to detect possible hemodynamic abnormalities, which could be involved in the pathogenesis of the disease. Methods. 32 eyes with early AMD, 37 eyes with atrophic AMD, 30 eyes affected by untreated neovascular AMD, and 43 eyes with fibrotic AMD were included. The control group consisted of 44 healthy eyes. Exclusion criteria were represented by any other ocular diseases other than AMD, tear film abnormalities, systemic cardiovascular abnormalities, diabetes mellitus, and a body temperature higher than 37.5°C. A total of 186 eyes without pupil dilation were investigated by infrared thermography (FLIR A320). The ocular surface temperature (OST) of three ocular points was calculated by means of an image processing technique from the infrared images. Two-sample t-test and one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) test were used for statistical analyses. Results. ANOVA analyses showed no significant differences among AMD groups (P value >0.272). OST in AMD patients was significantly lower than in controls (P > 0.05). Conclusions. Considering the possible relationship between ocular blood flow and OST, these findings might support the central role of ischemia in the pathogenesis of AMD. PMID:25436140

  19. Ocular surface temperature in age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Sodi, Andrea; Matteoli, Sara; Giacomelli, Giovanni; Finocchio, Lucia; Corvi, Andrea; Menchini, Ugo

    2014-01-01

    Background. The aim of this study is to investigate the ocular thermographic profiles in age-related macular degeneration (AMD) eyes and age-matched controls to detect possible hemodynamic abnormalities, which could be involved in the pathogenesis of the disease. Methods. 32 eyes with early AMD, 37 eyes with atrophic AMD, 30 eyes affected by untreated neovascular AMD, and 43 eyes with fibrotic AMD were included. The control group consisted of 44 healthy eyes. Exclusion criteria were represented by any other ocular diseases other than AMD, tear film abnormalities, systemic cardiovascular abnormalities, diabetes mellitus, and a body temperature higher than 37.5°C. A total of 186 eyes without pupil dilation were investigated by infrared thermography (FLIR A320). The ocular surface temperature (OST) of three ocular points was calculated by means of an image processing technique from the infrared images. Two-sample t-test and one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) test were used for statistical analyses. Results. ANOVA analyses showed no significant differences among AMD groups (P value >0.272). OST in AMD patients was significantly lower than in controls (P > 0.05). Conclusions. Considering the possible relationship between ocular blood flow and OST, these findings might support the central role of ischemia in the pathogenesis of AMD. PMID:25436140

  20. SINGLE-DEGENERATE TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE WITHOUT HYDROGEN CONTAMINATION

    SciTech Connect

    Justham, Stephen

    2011-04-01

    The lack of hydrogen in spectra of type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) is often seen as troublesome for single-degenerate (SD) progenitor models. We argue that, since continued accretion of angular momentum can prevent explosion of the white dwarf, it may be natural for the donor stars in SD progenitors of SNe Ia to exhaust their envelopes and shrink rapidly before the explosion. This outcome seems most likely for SD SN Ia progenitors where mass transfer begins from a giant donor star and might extend to other SD systems. Not only is the amount of hydrogen left in such a system below the current detection limit, but the donor star is typically orders of magnitude smaller than its Roche lobe by the point when an SD SN Ia occurs, in which case attempts to observe collisions between SN shocks and giant donor stars seem unlikely to succeed. We consider the constraints on this model from the circumstellar structures seen in spectra of SN 2006X and suggest a novel explanation for the origin of this material.

  1. Biomarkers in Frontotemporal Lobar Degenerations – Progress and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Hu, William T.; Trojanowski, John Q.; Shaw, Leslie M.

    2011-01-01

    Neuronal and glial changes associated with tau, TAR DNA binding protein of ~43 kD (TDP-43), and fused in sarcoma (FUS) together constitute the pathologic spectrum of frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). Most patients with FTLD present with prominent behavior or language changes, sometimes accompanied by extrapyramidal symptoms or motor neuron disease. Identification of FTLD patients with mutations in genes for tau, TDP-43, and FUS lends strong support for their pathogenic roles in FTLD, and elucidation of their dysfunction will pave the way for development of substrate specific therapy. However, there remains no reliable biomarker for early detection of FTLD or prediction of underlying FTLD pathologic change. Clinical syndromes usually reflects the earliest affected brain regions where atrophy can be visualized on structural MRI, but neither clinical nor structural imaging-based biomarkers has been accurately correlated with underlying pathology on the individual patient level. Biochemical markers in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) have also been investigated in FTLD and related disorders, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP). However, their accuracy and pathologic significance need to be confirmed in future multi-center studies. Here we review the progress made in FTLD biomarkers, including clinical phenotype/feature characterization, neuropsychological analysis, CSF and plasma analytes, and patterns of brain atrophy and network dysfunction detectable on brain imaging. Given the pathologic overlap of FTLD with ALS and PSP, collaboration with specialists in those fields will be essential in the translation of promising FTLD biomarkers into clinical practice. PMID:21554923

  2. Exploring age-related brain degeneration in meditation practitioners.

    PubMed

    Luders, Eileen

    2014-01-01

    A growing body of research suggests that meditation practices are associated with substantial psychological as well as physiological benefits. In searching for the biological mechanisms underlying the beneficial impact of meditation, studies have revealed practice-induced alterations of neurotransmitters, brain activity, and cognitive abilities, just to name a few. These findings not only imply a close link between meditation and brain structure, but also suggest possible modulating effects of meditation on age-related brain atrophy. Given that normal aging is associated with significant loss of brain tissue, meditation-induced growth and/or preservation might manifest as a seemingly reduced brain age in meditators (i.e., cerebral measures characteristic of younger brains). Surprisingly, there are only three published studies that have addressed the question of whether meditation diminishes age-related brain degeneration. This paper reviews these three studies with respect to the brain attributes studied, the analytical strategies applied, and the findings revealed. The review concludes with an elaborate discussion on the significance of existing studies, implications and directions for future studies, as well as the overall relevance of this field of research. PMID:23924195

  3. Beyond words: Pragmatic inference in behavioral variant of frontotemporal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Spotorno, Nicola; McMillan, Corey T; Rascovsky, Katya; Irwin, David J; Clark, Robin; Grossman, Murray

    2015-08-01

    When the message of a speaker goes beyond the literal or logical meaning of the sentences used, a pragmatic inference is required to understand the complete meaning of an utterance. Here we study one example of pragmatic inference, called scalar implicature. Such an inference is required when a weaker term "some" is used in a sentence like "Some of the students passed the exam" because the speaker presumably had a reason not to use a stronger term like "all". We investigated the comprehension of scalar implicatures in a group of 17 non-aphasic patients with behavioral variant frontotemporal degeneration (bvFTD) in order to test the contribution of non-linguistic decision-making ability and the role of prefrontal cortex in supporting the computation of pragmatic inferences. The results of two experiments point to a deficit in producing alternative interpretations beyond a logical reading. bvFTD patients thus prefer the narrowly literal or logical interpretation of a scalar term when they must generate a possible alternative interpretation by themselves, but patients prefer a pragmatic reading when offered a choice between the logical and the pragmatic interpretation of the same sentence. An imaging analysis links bvFTD patients' spontaneous tendency toward a narrowly logical interpretation with atrophy in ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Our findings are consistent with the pragmatic tolerance hypothesis, which proposes that difficulty generating alternative interpretations of an utterance, rather than a frank inability to compute an inference, affects the comprehension of a scalar term. PMID:26150205

  4. Late degeneration in rabbit tissues after irradiation by heavy ions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lett, J. T.; Cox, A. B.; Keng, P. C.; Lee, A. C.; Su, C. M.; Bergtold, D. S.

    1980-01-01

    Results are presented for investigations of the late effects of heavy-ion irradiation on rabbit tissues which were undertaken to assess the hazards associated with the long-term exposure of humans to heavy ions in space during such activities as the construction of solar power stations or voyages to Mars. White rabbits approximately six weeks old were exposed to various doses of collimated beams of 400-MeV/n Ne ions, 570 MeV/n Ar ions and Co-60 gamma rays directed through both eyes, and the responses of the various tissues (hair follicles, skin, cornea, lens, retina, Harderian glands, bone and forebrain) were examined. Proliferating tissues are found to exhibit high damage levels in the early and late periods following irradiation, while terminally differentiating tissues repond to radiation most intensely in the late period, years after irradiation, with no intermediate recovery. The results obtained from rabbits are used to predict the occurrence of late tissue degeneration in the central nervous system, terminally differentiating systems and stem cells of humans one or more decades following exposure to radiation levels anticipated during long-duration space flights. The studies also indicate that tissues may be prematurely aged in the sense that tissue life spans may be shortened without the development of malignancies.

  5. Superradiance of degenerate Fermi gases in a cavity.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yu; Yu, Zhenhua; Zhai, Hui

    2014-04-11

    In this Letter we consider spinless Fermi gases placed inside a cavity and study the critical strength of a pumping field for driving a superradiance transition. We emphasize that the Fermi surface nesting effect can strongly enhance the superradiance tendency. Around certain fillings, when the Fermi surface is nearly nested with a relevant nesting momentum, the susceptibility of the system toward a checkboard density-wave ordered state is greatly enhanced in comparison with a Bose gas with the same density, because of which a much smaller (sometime even vanishingly small) critical pumping field strength can give rise to superradiance. This effect leads to interesting reentrance behavior and a topologically distinct structure in the phase diagram. Away from these fillings, the Pauli exclusion principle brings about the dominant effect for which the critical pumping strength is lowered in the low-density regime and increased in the high-density regime. These results open the prospect of studying the rich phenomena of degenerate Fermi gases in a cavity. PMID:24765952

  6. Age-Related Macular Degeneration: Genetics and Biology Coming Together

    PubMed Central

    Fritsche, Lars G.; Fariss, Robert N.; Stambolian, Dwight; Abecasis, Gonalo R.; Curcio, Christine A.

    2014-01-01

    Genetic and genomic studies have enhanced our understanding of complex neurodegenerative diseases that exert a devastating impact on individuals and society. One such disease, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), is a major cause of progressive and debilitating visual impairment. Since the pioneering discovery in 2005 of complement factor H (CFH) as a major AMD susceptibility gene, extensive investigations have confirmed 19 additional genetic risk loci, and more are anticipated. In addition to common variants identified by now-conventional genome-wide association studies, targeted genomic sequencing and exome-chip analyses are uncovering rare variant alleles of high impact. Here, we provide a critical review of the ongoing genetic studies and of common and rare risk variants at a total of 20 susceptibility loci, which together explain 4060% of the disease heritability but provide limited power for diagnostic testing of disease risk. Identification of these susceptibility loci has begun to untangle the complex biological pathways underlying AMD pathophysiology, pointing to new testable paradigms for treatment. PMID:24773320

  7. Epidemiology of Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration in Northern Finland

    PubMed Central

    Luukkainen, Laura; Bloigu, Risto; Moilanen, Virpi; Remes, Anne Marja

    2015-01-01

    Background Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) is responsible for as many as every fifth case of early-onset dementia. Very few epidemiological studies of FTLD have been conducted; there are no published epidemiological data of FTLD from Finland or the other Nordic countries. The C9ORF72 expansion-associated FTLD is common in Finland; thus, the prevalence of FTLD is expected to be high in this population. Methods We retrospectively evaluated the incidence and prevalence of FTLD in university hospital settings in Northern Finland. Results The mean 1-year incidence of FTLD was 5.54/100,000 (range 1.9-11.3/100,000) in the population aged 45-65 years. The prevalence of FTLD in the same age group was 20.5/100,000. Conclusion The incidence and prevalence of FTLD in Finland seem to be the highest in Europe. However, studies from different countries may not be directly mutually comparable due to methodological issues. PMID:26675285

  8. Gravitational Thermodynamics for Interstellar Gas and Weakly Degenerate Quantum Gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Ding Yu; Shen, Jian Qi

    2016-03-01

    The temperature distribution of an ideal gas in gravitational fields has been identified as a longstanding problem in thermodynamics and statistical physics. According to the principle of entropy increase (i.e., the principle of maximum entropy), we apply a variational principle to the thermodynamical entropy functional of an ideal gas and establish a relationship between temperature gradient and gravitational field strength. As an illustrative example, the temperature and density distributions of an ideal gas in two simple but typical gravitational fields (i.e., a uniform gravitational field and an inverse-square gravitational field) are considered on the basis of entropic and hydrostatic equilibrium conditions. The effect of temperature inhomogeneity in gravitational fields is also addressed for a weakly degenerate quantum gas (e.g., Fermi and Bose gas). The present gravitational thermodynamics of a gas would have potential applications in quantum fluids, e.g., Bose–Einstein condensates in Earth’s gravitational field and the temperature fluctuation spectrum in cosmic microwave background radiation.

  9. Cellular models and therapies for age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Forest, David L.; Johnson, Lincoln V.; Clegg, Dennis O.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a complex neurodegenerative visual disorder that causes profound physical and psychosocial effects. Visual impairment in AMD is caused by the loss of retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) cells and the light-sensitive photoreceptor cells that they support. There is currently no effective treatment for the most common form of this disease (dry AMD). A new approach to treating AMD involves the transplantation of RPE cells derived from either human embryonic or induced pluripotent stem cells. Multiple clinical trials are being initiated using a variety of cell therapies. Although many animal models are available for AMD research, most do not recapitulate all aspects of the disease, hampering progress. However, the use of cultured RPE cells in AMD research is well established and, indeed, some of the more recently described RPE-based models show promise for investigating the molecular mechanisms of AMD and for screening drug candidates. Here, we discuss innovative cell-culture models of AMD and emerging stem-cell-based therapies for the treatment of this vision-robbing disease. PMID:26035859

  10. Nutritional Interventions against Age-Related Macular Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, P.S.

    2009-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of irreversible visual loss in the developed world. This disease of the elderly robs them of central vision in one or both eyes leading to a devastating loss of the ability to drive, read, and recognize faces. In recent years, a number of novel treatments for the neovascular form of AMD (also known as wet or exudative AMD) have been introduced, and for the first time, the relentless downhill course of vision loss experienced by the majority of patients with this particularly malignant variant of AMD has been transformed to the stabilization and even improvement of vision in at least two-thirds of patients. Likewise, the slower, more insidious form of AMD known as dry AMD which leads to geographic atrophy of the macula has become the focus of pharmaceutical firms efforts for intervention. Unfortunately, all of these novel treatments have limitations, and they tend to be very expensive. Thus, prevention of AMD is of paramount importance to reduce the healthcare burden of this blinding disorder. Accumulating evidence suggests that encouragement of increased consumption of fruits and vegetables rich in the xanthophyll carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin is a simple, cost effective public health intervention that might help to decrease the incidence of AMD. In this review article, the scientific underpinnings for these nutritional recommendations will be surveyed. PMID:20190863

  11. Aberrant Activity in Degenerated Retinas Revealed by Electrical Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Zeck, Günther

    2016-01-01

    In this review, I present and discuss the current understanding of aberrant electrical activity found in the ganglion cell layer (GCL) of rod-degenerated (rd) mouse retinas. The reported electrophysiological properties revealed by electrical imaging using high-density microelectrode arrays can be subdivided between spiking activity originating from retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and local field potentials (LFPs) reflecting strong trans-membrane currents within the GCL. RGCs in rd retinas show increased and rhythmic spiking compared to age-matched wild-type retinas. Fundamental spiking frequencies range from 5 to 15 Hz in various mouse models. The rhythmic RGC spiking is driven by a presynaptic network comprising AII amacrine and bipolar cells. In the healthy retina this rhythm-generating circuit is inhibited by photoreceptor input. A unique physiological feature of rd retinas is rhythmic LFP manifested as spatially-restricted low-frequency (5–15 Hz) voltage changes. Their spatiotemporal characterization revealed propagation and correlation with RGC spiking. LFPs rely on gap-junctional coupling and are shaped by glycinergic and by GABAergic transmission. The aberrant RGC spiking and LFPs provide a simple readout of the functionality of the remaining retinal circuitry which can be used in the development of improved vision restoration strategies. PMID:26903810

  12. Parainflammation, chronic inflammation and age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Mei; Xu, Heping

    2016-01-01

    Inflammation is an adaptive response of the immune system to noxious insults to maintain homeostasis and restore functionality. The retina is considered an immune privileged tissue due to its unique anatomical and physiological properties. During aging, the retina suffers from a low-grade chronic oxidative insult, which sustains for decades and increases in level with advancing age. As a result, the retinal innate immune system, particularly microglia and the complement system, undergo low levels of activation (para-inflammation). In many cases, this para-inflammatory response can maintain homeostasis in the healthy aging eye. However, in patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), this para-inflammatory response becomes dysregulated and contributes to macular damage. Factors contributing to the dysregulation of age-related retinal para-inflammation include genetic predisposition, environmental risk factors and old age. Dysregulated para-inflammation (chronic inflammation) in AMD damages the blood retina barrier (BRB), resulting in the breach of retinal immune privilege leading to the development of retinal lesions. This review discusses the basic principles of retinal innate immune responses to endogenous chronic insults in normal aging and in AMD, and explores the difference between beneficial para-inflammation and the detrimental chronic inflammation in the context of AMD. PMID:26292978

  13. Nitroxide pharmaceutical development for age-related degeneration and disease

    PubMed Central

    Zarling, Jacob A.; Brunt, Vienna E.; Vallerga, Anne K.; Li, Weixing; Tao, Albert; Zarling, David A.; Minson, Christopher T.

    2015-01-01

    Nitroxide small molecule agents are in development as preventative or therapeutic pharmaceutical drugs for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cardiovascular disease, which are two major diseases of aging. These aging diseases are associated with patient genetics, smoking, diet, oxidative stress, and chronic inflammation. Nitroxide drugs preventing aging-, smoking-, high sugar or high fat diet-, or radiation- and other environmental-induced pathophysiological conditions in aging disease are reviewed. Tempol (TP), Tempol Hydroxylamine (TP-H), and TP-H prodrug (OT-551) are evaluated in (1) non-smokers versus smokers with cutaneous microvascular dysfunction, rapidly reversed by cutaneous TP; (2) elderly cancer patients at risk for radiation-induced skin burns or hair loss, prevented by topical TP; and (3) elderly smoker or non-smoker AMD patients at risk for vision loss, prevented by daily eye drops of OT-551. The human data indicates safety and efficacy for these nitroxide drugs. Both TP and TP-H topically penetrate and function in skin or mucosa, protecting and treating radiation burns and hair loss or smoking-induced cutaneous vascular dysfunction. TP and TP-H do not penetrate the cornea, while OT-551 does effectively penetrate and travels to the back of the eye, preserving visual acuity and preserving normal and low light luminance in dry AMD smokers and non-smoker patients. Topical, oral, or injectable drug formulations are discussed. PMID:26594225

  14. Current therapeutic developments in atrophic age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Hanus, Jakub; Zhao, Fangkun; Wang, Shusheng

    2016-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a degenerative disorder of the central retina, is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the elderly. The underlying mechanism of the advanced form of dry AMD, also named geographic atrophy (GA) or atrophic AMD, remains unclear. Consequently, no cure is available for dry AMD or GA. The only prevention option currently available is the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) formulation, which has been demonstrated to slow down the progression of dry AMD. This review summarises recent advances in therapy for dry AMD and GA. Building on the new understanding of the disease and recent technological breakthroughs, numerous ongoing clinical trials have the goal of meeting the need to cure AMD. Therapeutic agents are being developed to target the key features of the disease, including inhibiting the complement pathway and other inflammatory pathways, reducing oxidative stress and protecting retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells, inhibiting lipofuscin and visual cycle, regenerating RPE cells from stem cells and restoring choroidal blood flow. Some of these therapeutic options, especially the stem cell-based therapy, hold great promise, which brings great hope for this devastating blinding disease. PMID:26553922

  15. Mild traumatic brain injury to the infant mouse causes robust white matter axonal degeneration which precedes apoptotic death of cortical and thalamic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dikranian, K.; Cohen, R.; Mac Donald, C.; Pan, Y.; Brakefield, D.; Bayly, P.; Parsadanian, A.

    2008-01-01

    The immature brain in the first several years of childhood is very vulnerable to trauma. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) during this critical period often leads to neuropathological and cognitive impairment. Previous experimental studies in rodent models of infant TBI were mostly concentrated on neuronal degeneration, while axonal injury and its relationship to cell death have attracted much less attention. To address this, we developed a closed controlled head injury model in infant (P7) mice and characterized the temporospatial pattern of axonal degeneration and neuronal cell death in the brain following mild injury. Using amyloid precursor protein (APP) as marker of axonal injury we found that mild head trauma causes robust axonal degeneration in the cingulum/external capsule as early as 30 min post-impact. These levels of axonal injury persisted throughout a 24 hr period, but significantly declined by 48 hrs. During the first 24 hrs injured axons underwent significant and rapid pathomorphological changes. Initial small axonal swellings evolved into larger spheroids and club-like swellings indicating the early disconnection of axons. Ultrastructural analysis revealed compaction of organelles, axolemmal and cytoskeletal defects. Axonal degeneration was followed by profound apoptotic cell death in the posterior cingulate and retrosplenial cortex and anterior thalamus which peaked between 16 and 24 hrs post-injury. At early stages post-injury no evidence of excitotoxic neuronal death at the impact site was found. At 48 hrs apoptotic cell death was reduced and paralleled with the reduction in the number of APP-labeled axonal profiles. Our data suggest that early degenerative response to injury in axons of the cingulum and external capsule may cause disconnection between cortical and thalamic neurons, and lead to their delayed apoptotic death. PMID:18440507

  16. Atypical multiple system atrophy is a new subtype of frontotemporal lobar degeneration: frontotemporal lobar degeneration associated with ?-synuclein.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Naoya; Boyer, Philip J; Lund, Cheryl; Lin, Wen-Lang; Koga, Shunsuke; Ross, Owen A; Weiner, Myron; Lipton, Anne; Powers, James M; White, Charles L; Dickson, Dennis W

    2015-07-01

    Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a sporadic neurodegenerative disease clinically characterized by cerebellar signs, parkinsonism, and autonomic dysfunction. Pathologically, MSA is an ?-synucleinopathy affecting striatonigral and olivopontocerebellar systems, while neocortical and limbic involvement is usually minimal. In this study, we describe four patients with atypical MSA with clinical features consistent with frontotemporal dementia (FTD), including two with corticobasal syndrome, one with progressive non-fluent aphasia, and one with behavioral variant FTD. None had autonomic dysfunction. All had frontotemporal atrophy and severe limbic ?-synuclein neuronal pathology. The neuronal inclusions were heterogeneous, but included Pick body-like inclusions. The latter were strongly associated with neuronal loss in the hippocampus and amygdala. Unlike typical Pick bodies, the neuronal inclusions were positive on Gallyas silver stain and negative on tau immunohistochemistry. In comparison to 34 typical MSA cases, atypical MSA had significantly more neuronal inclusions in anteromedial temporal lobe and limbic structures. While uncommon, our findings suggest that MSA may present clinically and pathologically as a frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). We suggest that this may represent a novel subtype of FTLD associated with ?-synuclein (FTLD-synuclein). PMID:25962793

  17. Exponential Mixing of the 3D Stochastic Navier-Stokes Equations Driven by Mildly Degenerate Noises

    SciTech Connect

    Albeverio, Sergio; Debussche, Arnaud; Xu Lihu

    2012-10-15

    We prove the strong Feller property and exponential mixing for 3D stochastic Navier-Stokes equation driven by mildly degenerate noises (i.e. all but finitely many Fourier modes being forced) via a Kolmogorov equation approach.

  18. X-ray and UV radiation from accreting nonmagnetic degenerate dwarfs. II

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kylafis, N. D.; Lamb, D. Q.

    1982-01-01

    Numerical calculations of X-ray and UV emission from accreting nonmagnetic degenerate dwarfs are reported, which span the entire range of accretion rates and stellar masses. Calculations include the effects of bremsstrahlung, Compton cooling, radiation pressure, albedo of the stellar surface, Compton degradation and free-free abscription of the X-ray spectrum by the accreting matter. Maximum X-ray luminosity for degenerate dwarfs undergoing spherical accretion is found to be 2.2 x 10 to the 36th ergs/s, which is little changed if accretion occurs radially over only a fraction of the stellar surface, so that the emitted radiation escapes without significant scattering. The temperature characterizing the X-ray spectra produced by degenerate dwarfs strongly depends on the stellar mass and the accretion rate, and it is suggested that the correlation between spectral temperature and luminosity is an important signature of degenerate X-ray sources.

  19. The retromer complex is required for rhodopsin recycling and its loss leads to photoreceptor degeneration.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shiuan; Tan, Kai Li; Agosto, Melina A; Xiong, Bo; Yamamoto, Shinya; Sandoval, Hector; Jaiswal, Manish; Bayat, Vafa; Zhang, Ke; Charng, Wu-Lin; David, Gabriela; Duraine, Lita; Venkatachalam, Kartik; Wensel, Theodore G; Bellen, Hugo J

    2014-04-01

    Rhodopsin mistrafficking can cause photoreceptor (PR) degeneration. Upon light exposure, activated rhodopsin 1 (Rh1) in Drosophila PRs is internalized via endocytosis and degraded in lysosomes. Whether internalized Rh1 can be recycled is unknown. Here, we show that the retromer complex is expressed in PRs where it is required for recycling endocytosed Rh1 upon light stimulation. In the absence of subunits of the retromer, Rh1 is processed in the endolysosomal pathway, leading to a dramatic increase in late endosomes, lysosomes, and light-dependent PR degeneration. Reducing Rh1 endocytosis or Rh1 levels in retromer mutants alleviates PR degeneration. In addition, increasing retromer abundance suppresses degenerative phenotypes of mutations that affect the endolysosomal system. Finally, expressing human Vps26 suppresses PR degeneration in Vps26 mutant PRs. We propose that the retromer plays a conserved role in recycling rhodopsins to maintain PR function and integrity. PMID:24781186

  20. Nemaline rod and degeneration of Z band of muscle cell in weightlessness at spaceflight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Imuta, Miharu; Higuchi, Itsuro

    1999-06-01

    There are some studies demonstrating the skeletal muscle degeneration associated with the degeneration of Z band and appearance of nemaline rods in experimental animals of the simulation model for spaceflight but not in human heart tissues. In the present study, therefore, we investigated the pathological changes or degeneration in left auricular heart muscles obtained during operations of mitral valves replacement using both electron and light microscopies. The degeneration of Z band even in the myofibrils of comparatively little damaged cell was found. Furthermore, nemaline rods were detected in most of the heart muscle cells. These results suggest that the existence of nemaline rods is involved in the cell injury in the heart muscle of patients with heart disease without nemaline myopathy. Further study is necessary to know whether the similar pathological findings are observed not only in the skeletal muscle but also in the cardiac muscle in experimental animals of the simulation model for spaceflight or in a prolonged spaceflight.