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Sample records for anaplasma phagocytophilum exploits

  1. Anaplasma phagocytophilum: deceptively simple or simply deceptive?

    PubMed Central

    Severo, Maiara S; Stephens, Kimberly D; Kotsyfakis, Michail; Pedra, Joao HF

    2012-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligate intracellular rickettsial pathogen transmitted by ixodid ticks. This bacterium colonizes myeloid and nonmyeloid cells and causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis – an important immunopathological vector-borne disease in the USA, Europe and Asia. Recent studies uncovered novel insights into the mechanisms of A. phagocytophilum pathogenesis and immunity. Here, we provide an overview of the underlying events by which the immune system responds to A. phagocytophilum infection, how this pathogen counteracts host immunity and the contribution of the tick vector for microbial transmission. We also discuss current scientific gaps in the knowledge of A. phagocytophilum biology for the purpose of exchanging research perspectives. PMID:22702526

  2. Dendrimer-enabled transformation of Anaplasma phagocytophilum.

    PubMed

    Oki, Aminat T; Seidman, David; Lancina, Michael G; Mishra, Manoj K; Kannan, Rangaramanujam M; Yang, Hu; Carlyon, Jason A

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligate intracellular bacterium that causes the emerging infection, granulocytic anaplasmosis. While electroporation can transform A. phagocytophilum isolated from host cells, no method has been developed to transform it while growing inside the ApV (A. phagocytophilum-occupied vacuole). Polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimers, well-defined tree-branched macromolecules used for gene therapy and nucleic acid delivery into mammalian cells, were recently shown to be effective in transforming Chlamydia spp. actively growing in host cells. We determined if we could adapt a similar system to transform A. phagocytophilum. Incubating fluorescently labeled PAMAM dendrimers with infected host cells resulted in fluorescein-positive ApVs. Incubating infected host cells or host cell-free A. phagocytophilum organisms with dendrimers complexed with pCis GFPuv-SS Himar A7 plasmid, which carries a Himar1 transposon cassette encoding GFPuv and spectinomycin/streptomycin resistance plus the Himar1 transposase itself, resulted in GFP-positive, antibiotic resistant bacteria. Yet, transformation efficiencies were low. The transformed bacterial populations could only be maintained for a few passages, likely due to random Himar1 cassette-mediated disruption of A. phagocytophilum genes required for fitness. Nonetheless, these results provide proof of principle that dendrimers can deliver exogenous DNA into A. phagocytophilum, both inside and outside of host cells. PMID:26369714

  3. The natural history of Anaplasma phagocytophilum.

    PubMed

    Woldehiwet, Zerai

    2010-02-10

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is the recently designated name replacing three species of granulocytic bacteria, Ehrlichia phagocytophila, Ehrlichia equi and the agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis, after the recent reorganization of the families Rickettsiaceae and Anaplasmataceae in the order Rickettsiales. Tick-borne fever (TBF), which is caused by the prototype of A. phagocytophilum, was first described in 1932 in Scotland. A similar disease caused by a related granulocytic agent was first described in horses in the USA in 1969; this was followed by the description of two distinct granulocytic agents causing similar diseases in dogs in the USA in 1971 and 1982. Until the discovery of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) in the USA in 1994, these organisms were thought to be distinct species of bacteria infecting specific domestic animals and free-living reservoirs. It is now widely accepted that the agents affecting different animal hosts are variants of the same Gram-negative obligatory intracellular bacterium, which is transmitted by hard ticks belonging to the Ixodes persulcatus complex. One of its fascinating features is that it infects and actively grows in neutrophils by employing an array of mechanisms to subvert their bactericidal activity. It is also able to survive within an apparently immune host by employing a complex mechanism of antigenic variation. Ruminants with TBF and humans with HGA develop severe febrile reaction, bacteraemia and leukopenia due to neutropenia, lymphocytopenia and thrombocytopenia within a week of exposure to a tick bite. Because of the severe haematological disorders lasting for several days and other adverse effects on the host's immune functions, infected animals and humans are more susceptible to other infections. PMID:19811878

  4. Anaplasma phagocytophilum seroprevalence in equids: a survey in Sicily (Italy).

    PubMed

    Giudice, Elisabetta; Giannetto, Claudia; Furco, Vincenzo; Alongi, Angela; Torina, Alessandra

    2012-08-01

    This study was undertaken to determine the prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection in Equidae and investigate the possibility of exposure to the organism in Sicily (Southern Italy). During the study blood samples were collected in horses and donkeys housed in five of the nine provinces of Sicilian Island. Of 133 horses and 100 donkeys tested, respectively 9.0% and 6.0% were seroactive (IFAT) with A. phagocytophilum antigen. In only 4.7% of the horses, specific A. phagocytophilum DNA was recorded; in donkey, Anaplasma DNA was not found. Our results indicate a low prevalence of A. phagocytophilum in Sicilian equids. This condition does not justify the exclusion of equids from prophylactic plans for this multihost pathogen infection, a zoonosis with a wide distribution in other European countries. However, further studies are necessary to elucidate the possible mechanisms that involve the Equidae as host of this pathogen. PMID:22362364

  5. Anaplasma phagocytophilum in ruminants in Europe.

    PubMed

    Woldehiwet, Zerai

    2006-10-01

    The agent that causes tick-borne fever (TBF) in sheep was first described in 1940, 8 years after the disease was first recognized in Scotland. The same agent was soon shown to cause TBF in sheep and pasture fever in cattle in other parts of the UK, Scandinavia, and other parts of Europe. After the initial use of the name Rickettsia phagocytophila, the organism was given the name Cytoecetes phagocytophila to reflect its association with granulocytes and its morphological similarity with Cytoecetes microti. This name continued to be used by workers in the UK until the recent reclassification of the granulocytic ehrlichiae affecting ruminants, horses, and humans as variants of the same species, Anaplasma phagocytophilum. TBF and pasture fever are characterized by high fever, recurrent bacteremia, neutropenia, lymphocytopenia, thrombocytopenia, and general immunosuppression, resulting in more severe secondary infections such as tick pyemia, pneumonic pasteurellosis, listeriosis, and enterotoxemia. During the peak period of bacteremia as many as 90% of granulocytes may be infected. The agent is transmitted transtadially by the hard tick Ixodes ricinus, and possibly other ticks. After patent bacteremia, sheep, goats, and cattle become persistently infected "carriers," perhaps playing an important role in the maintenance of infection, in the flock/herd. Little is known about how efficiently ticks acquire and maintain infection in ruminant populations or whether "carrier" domestic ruminants play an important role as reservoirs of infection, but deer, other free-living ruminants, and wild rodents are also potential sources of infection. During the late 1990s serological evidence of infection of humans was demonstrated in several European countries, creating a renewed interest and increased awareness of the zoonotic potential of TBF variants. More recently, a few cases of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) have been reported in some European countries, but it remains to

  6. Reservoir Competence of Vertebrate Hosts for Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Hersh, Michelle H.; Tibbetts, Michael; McHenry, Diana J.; Duerr, Shannon; Brunner, Jesse; Killilea, Mary; LoGiudice, Kathleen; Schmidt, Kenneth A.; Ostfeld, Richard S.

    2012-01-01

    Fourteen vertebrate species (10 mammals and 4 birds) were assessed for their ability to transmit Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the bacterium that causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis, to uninfected feeding ixodid ticks. Small mammals were most likely to infect ticks but all species assessed were capable of transmitting the bacterium, in contrast to previous findings. PMID:23171835

  7. The pathogen-occupied vacuoles of anaplasma phagocytophilum and anaplasma marginale interact with the endoplasmic reticulum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genus Anaplasma consists of tick-transmitted obligate intracellular bacteria that invade white or red blood cells to cause debilitating and potentially fatal infections. A. phagocytophilum, a human and veterinary pathogen, infects neutrophils to cause granulocytic anaplasmosis. A. marginale inva...

  8. Breaking in and grabbing a meal: Anaplasma phagocytophilum cellular invasion, nutrient acquisition, and promising tools for their study.

    PubMed

    Truchan, Hilary K; Seidman, David; Carlyon, Jason A

    2013-12-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum invades neutrophils to cause the emerging infection, human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Here, we provide a focused review of the A. phagocytophilum invasin-host cell receptor interactions that promote bacterial entry and the degradative and membrane traffic pathways that the organism exploits to route nutrients to the organelle in which it resides. Because its obligatory intracellular nature hinders knock out-complementation approaches, we also discuss the current methods used to study A. phagocytophilum gene function and the potential benefit of applying novel tools that have advanced studies of other obligate intracellular bacterial pathogens. PMID:24141091

  9. Prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in horses from Southern Punjab (Pakistan).

    PubMed

    Razzaq, F; Khosa, T; Ahmad, S; Hussain, M; Saeed, Z; Khan, M A; Shaikh, R S; Ali, M; Iqbal, F

    2015-06-01

    The present study was designed to optimize a PCR-RFLP protocol for the molecular detection of Anaplasma sp. and to compare its prevalence in blood samples of equines from Southern Punjab (Pakistan) and to find out the risk factors involved in the spread of anaplasmosis. A total of 210 blood samples were collected from equines from 2 sampling sites (Dera Ghazi Khan and Khanewal districts). Data on the animals' characteristics (age, species and gender) were collected through survey. PCR amplified the 577bp product specific for 16S rRNA gene of Anaplasma spp. in 9 blood samples (4.3% of total), [Dera Ghazi Khan (N = 3) and Khanewal (N = 6)]. These Anaplasma spp. positive blood samples were used for PCR amplification using A. phagocytophilum specific primers and parasite was detected in all of them. Also it was revealed that the characteristics of the animals i.e. age, gender, species had no significant association with the presence of Anaplasma sp. Hematological parameters remained unaffected while lymphocyte count was significantly lowered in A. phagocytophilum positive samples. PMID:26691251

  10. Mechanisms of Obligatory Intracellular Infection with Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Rikihisa, Yasuko

    2011-01-01

    Summary: Anaplasma phagocytophilum persists in nature by cycling between mammals and ticks. Human infection by the bite of an infected tick leads to a potentially fatal emerging disease called human granulocytic anaplasmosis. A. phagocytophilum is an obligatory intracellular bacterium that replicates inside mammalian granulocytes and the salivary gland and midgut cells of ticks. A. phagocytophilum evolved the remarkable ability to hijack the regulatory system of host cells. A. phagocytophilum alters vesicular traffic to create an intracellular membrane-bound compartment that allows replication in seclusion from lysosomes. The bacterium downregulates or actively inhibits a number of innate immune responses of mammalian host cells, and it upregulates cellular cholesterol uptake to acquire cholesterol for survival. It also upregulates several genes critical for the infection of ticks, and it prolongs tick survival at freezing temperatures. Several host factors that exacerbate infection have been identified, including interleukin-8 (IL-8) and cholesterol. Host factors that overcome infection include IL-12 and gamma interferon (IFN-γ). Two bacterial type IV secretion effectors and several bacterial proteins that associate with inclusion membranes have been identified. An understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying A. phagocytophilum infection will foster the development of creative ideas to prevent or treat this emerging tick-borne disease. PMID:21734244

  11. Natural Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection in ticks from a forest area of Selenge province, Mongolia

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is a zoonotic agent of public health importance, infecting both humans and animals. An investigation of the presence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum as well as Anaplasma platys was conducted in a forest area of Selenge province, Mongolia, where ticks are widely distributed and tick-borne diseases are highly endemic. Ticks were collected and tested using polymerase chain reaction based on groEL methodology. Anaplasma phagocytophilum was detected in 14 (6%) of Ixodes persulcatus ticks and four (1%) Dermacentor nuttalli ticks; infection of Anaplasma platys was detected in 1% of Ixodes persulcatus ticks and 10% of Dermacentor nuttalli ticks. The phylogenetic tree showed that the Anaplasma phagocytophilum clustered with the Russian group, most likely due to similar geographical locations. This finding is significant for both veterinary and public health officials given that these agents can cause both animal and human illness. PMID:24734213

  12. Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma phagocytophilum: Rickettsiales pathogens of veterinary and public health significance.

    PubMed

    Atif, Farhan Ahmad

    2015-11-01

    Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma phagocytophilum are the most important tick-borne bacteria of veterinary and public health significance in the family Anaplasmataceae. The objective of current review is to provide knowledge on ecology and epidemiology of A. phagocytophilum and compare major similarities and differences of A. marginale and A. phagocytophilum. Bovine anaplasmosis is globally distributed tick-borne disease of livestock with great economic importance in cattle industry. A. phagocytophilum, a cosmopolitan zoonotic tick transmitted pathogen of wide mammalian hosts. The infection in domestic animals is generally referred as tick-borne fever. Concurrent infections exist in ticks, domestic and wild animals in same geographic area. All age groups are susceptible, but the prevalence increases with age. Movement of susceptible domestic animals from tick free non-endemic regions to disease endemic regions is the major risk factor of bovine anaplasmosis and tick-borne fever. Recreational activities or any other high-risk tick exposure habits as well as blood transfusion are important risk factors of human granulocytic anaplasmosis. After infection, individuals remain life-long carriers. Clinical anaplasmosis is usually diagnosed upon examination of stained blood smears. Generally, detection of serum antibodies followed by molecular diagnosis is usually recommended. There are problems of sensitivity and cross-reactivity with both the Anaplasma species during serological tests. Tetracyclines are the drugs of choice for treatment and elimination of anaplasmosis in animals and humans. Universal vaccine is not available for either A. marginale or A. phagocytophilum, effective against geographically diverse strains. Major control measures for bovine anaplasmosis and tick-borne fever include rearing of tick-resistant breeds, endemic stability, breeding Anaplasma-free herds, identification of regional vectors, domestic/wild reservoirs and control, habitat modification

  13. Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection in moose (Alces alces) in Norway.

    PubMed

    Pūraitė, Irma; Rosef, Olav; Paulauskas, Algimantas; Radzijevskaja, Jana

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is a tick-borne bacterium that infects a wide range of animal species. The aim of our study was to investigate the prevalence of A. phagocytophilum in Norwegian moose Alces alces and to characterize the bacteria by sequencing of partial msp4 and 16S rRNA genes. Hunters collected spleen samples from 99 moose of different ages during 2013 and 2014 in two areas: Aust-Agder County (n = 70) where Ixodes ricinus ticks are abundant and Oppland County (n = 29) where ticks were either absent, or abundance very low. A. phagocytophilum was detected only in moose from the I. ricinus - abundant area. The overall prevalence of infection according to 16S rRNA and msp4 gene-based PCR was 41.4% and 31.4% respectively. Sequence analysis of the partial 16S rRNA and msp4 gene revealed two and eight different sequence types respectively. Four of eight msp4 sequence types determined in this study were unique, while others were identical to sequences derived from other ruminants and ticks. The present study indicates that moose could be a potential wildlife reservoir of A. phagocytophilum in Norway. PMID:26428857

  14. Prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in small rodents in France.

    PubMed

    Chastagner, A; Moinet, M; Perez, G; Roy, E; McCoy, K D; Plantard, O; Agoulon, A; Bastian, S; Butet, A; Rantier, Y; Verheyden, H; Cèbe, N; Leblond, A; Vourc'h, G

    2016-07-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging zoonotic tick-borne pathogen affecting a wide range of mammals. Rodents are suspected to be natural reservoirs for this bacterium, but their role in the epidemiologic cycles affecting domestic animals and wild ungulates has not been demonstrated. This study aimed to improve our knowledge on A. phagocytophilum prevalence in Apodemus sylvaticus, A. flavicollis and Myodes glareolus using data collected in 2010 in one area in eastern France and in 2012-2013 in two others areas in western France. Rodents were captured in each site and infection was tested using qualitative real-time PCR assays on either blood or spleen samples. Prevalence showed high variability among sites. The highest prevalence was observed in the most eastern site (with an average infection rate of 22.8% across all species), whereas no rodent was found to be PCR positive in the south-west site and only 6.6% were positive in the north-west of France. Finally, a significant increase in prevalence was observed in autumn samples compared to spring samples in the north-west, but no change was found in the other two sites. PMID:27270190

  15. The Pathogen-Occupied Vacuoles of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Anaplasma marginale Interact with the Endoplasmic Reticulum

    PubMed Central

    Truchan, Hilary K.; Cockburn, Chelsea L.; Hebert, Kathryn S.; Magunda, Forgivemore; Noh, Susan M.; Carlyon, Jason A.

    2016-01-01

    The genus Anaplasma consists of tick-transmitted obligate intracellular bacteria that invade white or red blood cells to cause debilitating and potentially fatal infections. A. phagocytophilum, a human and veterinary pathogen, infects neutrophils to cause granulocytic anaplasmosis. A. marginale invades bovine erythrocytes. Evidence suggests that both species may also infect endothelial cells in vivo. In mammalian and arthropod host cells, A. phagocytophilum and A. marginale reside in host cell derived pathogen-occupied vacuoles (POVs). While it was recently demonstrated that the A. phagocytophilum-occupied vacuole (ApV) intercepts membrane traffic from the trans-Golgi network, it is unclear if it or the A. marginale-occupied vacuole (AmV) interacts with other secretory organelles. Here, we demonstrate that the ApV and AmV extensively interact with the host endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in endothelial, myeloid, and/or tick cells. ER lumen markers, calreticulin, and protein disulfide isomerase, and the ER membrane marker, derlin-1, were pronouncedly recruited to the peripheries of both POVs. ApV association with the ER initiated early and continued throughout the infection cycle. Both the ApV and AmV interacted with the rough ER and smooth ER. However, only derlin-1-positive rough ER derived vesicles were delivered into the ApV lumen where they localized with intravacuolar bacteria. Transmission electron microscopy identified multiple ER-POV membrane contact sites on the cytosolic faces of both species' vacuoles that corresponded to areas on the vacuoles' lumenal faces where intravacuolar Anaplasma organisms closely associated. A. phagocytophilum is known to hijack Rab10, a GTPase that regulates ER dynamics and morphology. Yet, ApV-ER interactions were unhindered in cells in which Rab10 had been knocked down, demonstrating that the GTPase is dispensable for the bacterium to parasitize the ER. These data establish the ApV and AmV as pathogen-host interfaces that directly

  16. The Pathogen-Occupied Vacuoles of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Anaplasma marginale Interact with the Endoplasmic Reticulum.

    PubMed

    Truchan, Hilary K; Cockburn, Chelsea L; Hebert, Kathryn S; Magunda, Forgivemore; Noh, Susan M; Carlyon, Jason A

    2016-01-01

    The genus Anaplasma consists of tick-transmitted obligate intracellular bacteria that invade white or red blood cells to cause debilitating and potentially fatal infections. A. phagocytophilum, a human and veterinary pathogen, infects neutrophils to cause granulocytic anaplasmosis. A. marginale invades bovine erythrocytes. Evidence suggests that both species may also infect endothelial cells in vivo. In mammalian and arthropod host cells, A. phagocytophilum and A. marginale reside in host cell derived pathogen-occupied vacuoles (POVs). While it was recently demonstrated that the A. phagocytophilum-occupied vacuole (ApV) intercepts membrane traffic from the trans-Golgi network, it is unclear if it or the A. marginale-occupied vacuole (AmV) interacts with other secretory organelles. Here, we demonstrate that the ApV and AmV extensively interact with the host endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in endothelial, myeloid, and/or tick cells. ER lumen markers, calreticulin, and protein disulfide isomerase, and the ER membrane marker, derlin-1, were pronouncedly recruited to the peripheries of both POVs. ApV association with the ER initiated early and continued throughout the infection cycle. Both the ApV and AmV interacted with the rough ER and smooth ER. However, only derlin-1-positive rough ER derived vesicles were delivered into the ApV lumen where they localized with intravacuolar bacteria. Transmission electron microscopy identified multiple ER-POV membrane contact sites on the cytosolic faces of both species' vacuoles that corresponded to areas on the vacuoles' lumenal faces where intravacuolar Anaplasma organisms closely associated. A. phagocytophilum is known to hijack Rab10, a GTPase that regulates ER dynamics and morphology. Yet, ApV-ER interactions were unhindered in cells in which Rab10 had been knocked down, demonstrating that the GTPase is dispensable for the bacterium to parasitize the ER. These data establish the ApV and AmV as pathogen-host interfaces that directly

  17. Bovine anaplasmosis in Turkey: First laboratory confirmed clinical cases caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum.

    PubMed

    Aktas, Munir; Özübek, Sezayi

    2015-08-01

    Anaplasma species are obligate intracellular rickettsial pathogens that affect the health of humans and other animals. Clinical cases of anaplasmosis caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum were evaluated, and the frequency of bovine Anaplasma species was determined in cattle. Blood samples and thin blood smears were collected from 10 cattle exhibiting clinical signs of tick-borne fever. In addition, blood samples were collected from 123 apparently healthy cattle from the same area. DNA was screened by reverse line blot assay for the presence of the hypervariable V1 region of the 16S rRNA gene of Anaplasma/Ehrlichia species. Intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies of A. phagocytophilum were observed in neutrophils of 6 sick animals. Parasitemia ranged from 0.2 to 1.6% in individual slides. Reverse line blot showed 45.1% (60/133) of the sampled cattle to be positive for one or more of five Anaplasma species. The frequency of single infections was 20.3% (27/133), while mixed infections were found in 24.8% (33/133) of samples with six different combinations of species and a maximum of four pathogens detected. A. phagocytophilum was the most prevalent (41/133, 30.8%) followed by Anaplasma marginale (25/133, 18.8%), Anaplasma centrale (24/133, 18%), Ehrlichia sp. strain Omatjenne (18/133, 13.5%) and Anaplasma bovis (1/133, 0.7%). This is the first report of A. bovis in a cow from Turkey. This is also the first report of clinical cases caused by A. phagocytophilum in cattle from the country. Therefore, A. phagocytophilum should be taken into account as differential diagnosis in cases of high fever and anorexia in pastured animals. PMID:26051478

  18. Transovarial transmission of Francisella-like endosymbionts and Anaplasma phagocytophilum variants in Dermacentor albipictus (Acari: Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Baldridge, Gerald D; Scoles, Glen A; Burkhardt, Nicole Y; Schloeder, Brian; Kurtti, Timothy J; Munderloh, Ulrike G

    2009-05-01

    Dermacentor albipictus (Packard) is a North American tick that feeds on cervids and livestock. It is a suspected vector of anaplasmosis in cattle, but its microbial flora and vector potential remain underevaluated. We screened D. albipictus ticks collected from Minnesota white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) for bacteria of the genera Anaplasma, Ehrlichia, Francisella, and Rickettsia using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) gene amplification and sequence analyses. We detected Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Francisella-like endosymbionts (FLEs) in nymphal and adult ticks of both sexes at 45 and 94% prevalences, respectively. The A. phagocytophilum and FLEs were transovarially transmitted to F1 larvae by individual ticks at efficiencies of 10-40 and 95-100%, respectively. The FLEs were transovarially transmitted to F2 larvae obtained as progeny of adults from F1 larval ticks reared to maturity on a calf, but A. phagocytophilum were not. Based on PCR and tissue culture inoculation assays, A. phagocytophilum and FLEs were not transmitted to the calf. The amplified FLE 16S rRNA gene sequences were identical to that of an FLE detected in a D. albipictus from Texas, whereas those of the A. phagocytophilum were nearly identical to those of probable human-nonpathogenic A. phagocytophilum WI-1 and WI-2 variants detected in white-tailed deer from central Wisconsin. However, the D. albipictus A. phagocytophilum sequences differed from that of the nonpathogenic A. phagocytophilum variant-1 associated with Ixodes scapularis ticks and white-tailed deer as well as that of the human-pathogenic A. phagocytophilum ha variant associated with I. scapularis and the white-footed mouse, Peromyscus leucopus. The transovarial transmission of A. phagocytophilum variants in Dermacentor ticks suggests that maintenance of A. phagocytophilum in nature may not be solely dependent on horizontal transmission. PMID:19496436

  19. Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection in small mammal hosts of Ixodes ticks, western United States.

    PubMed

    Foley, Janet E; Nieto, Nathan C; Adjemian, Jennifer; Dabritz, Haydee; Brown, Richard N

    2008-07-01

    A total of 2,121 small mammals in California were assessed for Anaplasma phagocytophilum from 2006 through 2008. Odds ratios were >1 for 4 sciurids species and dusky-footed woodrats. High seroprevalence was observed in northern sites. Ten tick species were identified. Heavily infested rodent species included meadow voles, woodrats, deer mice, and redwood chipmunks. PMID:18598645

  20. Stat1 negatively regulates immune-mediated injury with Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection.

    PubMed

    Choi, Kyoung-Seong; Scorpio, Diana G; Dumler, J Stephen

    2014-11-15

    Human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) is caused by the obligate intracellular bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Our data previously demonstrated that A. phagocytophilum induces an immunopathologic response by activating IFN-γ production through the Stat1 signaling pathway. In this study, we investigated the broader role of Stat1 signaling in the host response to infection with A. phagocytophilum. In Stat1 knockout (KO) compared with wild-type mice, A. phagocytophilum infection was more highly pathogenic as characterized by the unanticipated development of clinical signs in mice including markedly increased splenomegaly, more severe inflammatory splenic and hepatic histopathology, >100-fold higher blood and splenic bacterial loads, and more elevated proinflammatory cytokine/chemokine responses in serum. CD4(+) and CD8(+) T lymphocyte populations were significantly expanded in spleens of A. phagocytophilum-infected Stat1 KO mice compared with wild-type mice. The leukocyte infiltrates in the livers and spleens of A. phagocytophilum-infected Stat1 KO mice also contained expansions in neutrophil and monocyte/macrophage populations. Importantly, A. phagocytophilum-infected Stat1 KO mice did not demonstrate induction of inducible NO synthase in splenocytes. These results show that Stat1 plays an important role in controlling bacterial loads but also by unexpectedly providing an undefined mechanism for dampening of the immunopathologic response observed with A. phagocytophilum infection. PMID:25305312

  1. Stat1 negatively regulates immune-mediated injury with Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection1

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Kyoung-Seong; Scorpio, Diana G.; Dumler, J. Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) is caused by the obligate intracellular bacterium, Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Our data previously demonstrated that A. phagocytophilum induces an immunopathologic response by activating IFNγ production through the signal transducer and activation of transcription 1 (Stat1) signaling pathway. In this study, we investigated the broader role of Stat1 signaling in the host response to infection with A. phagocytophilum. In Stat1 knock out (KO) compared to wild type mice, A. phagocytophilum infection was more highly pathogenic as characterized by the unanticipated development of clinical signs in mice including markedly increased splenomegaly, more severe inflammatory splenic and hepatic histopathology, >100-fold higher blood and splenic bacterial loads, and more elevated pro-inflammatory cytokine/chemokine responses in serum. CD4+ and CD8+ T lymphocyte populations were significantly expanded in spleens of A. phagocytophilum-infected Stat1 KO mice compared with wild-type (WT) mice. The leukocyte infiltrates in the livers and spleens of A. phagocytophilum-infected Stat1 KO mice also contained expansions in neutrophil and monocytes/macrophage populations. Importantly, A. phagocytophilum-infected Stat1 KO mice did not demonstrate induction of iNOS in splenocytes. These results show that Stat1 plays an important role in controlling bacterial loads but also by unexpectedly providing an undefined mechanism for dampening of the immunopathologic response observed with A. phagocytophilum infection. PMID:25305312

  2. Molecular characterization reveals distinct genospecies of Anaplasma phagocytophilum from diverse North American hosts

    PubMed Central

    Bradburd, Gideon; Foley, Janet

    2012-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging tick-borne pathogen that infects humans, domestic animals and wildlife throughout the Holarctic. In the far-western United States, multiple rodent species have been implicated as natural reservoirs for A. phagocytophilum. However, the presence of multiple A. phagocytophilum strains has made it difficult to determine which reservoir hosts pose the greatest risk to humans and domestic animals. Here we characterized three genetic markers (23S–5S rRNA intergenic spacer, ank and groESL) from 73 real-time TaqMan PCR-positive A. phagocytophilum strains infecting multiple rodent and reptile species, as well as a dog and a horse, from California. Bayesian and maximum-likelihood phylogenetic analyses of all three genetic markers consistently identified two major clades, one of which consisted of A. phagocytophilum strains infecting woodrats and the other consisting of strains infecting sciurids (chipmunks and squirrels) as well as the dog and horse strains. In addition, analysis of the 23S–5S rRNA spacer region identified two unique and highly dissimilar clades of A. phagocytophilum strains infecting several lizard species. Our findings indicate that multiple unique strains of A. phagocytophilum with distinct host tropisms exist in California. Future epidemiological studies evaluating human and domestic animal risk should incorporate these distinctions. PMID:21921109

  3. Opening the black box of Anaplasma phagocytophilum diversity: current situation and future perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Dugat, Thibaud; Lagrée, Anne-Claire; Maillard, Renaud; Boulouis, Henri-Jean; Haddad, Nadia

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is a zoonotic obligate intracellular bacterium known to be transmitted by ticks belonging to the Ixodes persulcatus complex. This bacterium can infect several mammalian species, and is known to cause diseases with variable symptoms in many domestic animals. Specifically, it is the causative agent of tick-borne fever (TBF), a disease of important economic impact in European domestic ruminants, and human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA), an emerging zoonotic disease in Asia, USA and Europe. A. phagocytophilum epidemiological cycles are complex and involve different ecotypes, vectors, and mammalian host species. Moreover, the epidemiology of A. phagocytophilum infection differs greatly between Europe and the USA. These different epidemiological contexts are associated with considerable variations in bacterial strains. Until recently, few A. phagocytophilum molecular typing tools were available, generating difficulties in completely elucidating the epidemiological cycles of this bacterium. Over the last few years, many A. phagocytophilum typing techniques have been developed, permitting in-depth epidemiological exploration. Here, we review the current knowledge and future perspectives regarding A. phagocytophilum epidemiology and phylogeny, and then focus on the molecular typing tools available for studying A. phagocytophilum genetic diversity. PMID:26322277

  4. Seroprevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum among healthy dogs and horses in Israel.

    PubMed

    Levi, O; Waner, T; Baneth, G; Keysary, A; Bruchim, Y; Silverman, J; Harrus, S

    2006-03-01

    The presence of reacting antibodies to Anaplasma phagocytophilum has previously been demonstrated in Israel, both in humans and the golden jackal (Canis aureus syriacus). This study was undertaken to determine the seroprevalence of A. phagocytophilum antibodies in two additional potential hosts, domestic dogs and horses in order to investigate the possibility of exposure to the organism in Israel. Of 195 dogs tested, 9% were seroreactive with A. phagocytophilum antigen and 30% were seroreactive to Ehrlichia canis. Twenty-nine percent of the dogs seropositive for E. canis were also reactive to A. phagocytophilum. Two dogs had immunofluorescence antibody (IFA) antibody titres for A. phagocytophilum greater than E. canis. The equine serological survey (n = 300) revealed no seroreactive horses. The results presented in this study suggest that dogs in Israel could have been accidentally exposed to A. phagocytophilum, for example by ticks carried on migrating birds, however, the possibility of cross-reaction with E. canis should also be considered. In spite of the high prevalence of ticks on horses in Israel during the summer months, no evidence for exposure to A. phagocytophilum was apparent. PMID:16626404

  5. Prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in domestic felines in the United States.

    PubMed

    Billeter, Sarah A; Spencer, Jennifer A; Griffin, Brenda; Dykstra, Christine C; Blagburn, Byron L

    2007-06-20

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is among the more common tick-borne disease agents in the United States. It is of veterinary and public health significance as dogs, cats, and human beings are known to be susceptible. A. phagocytophilum is transmitted trans-stadially by either nymphs or adults of either the black-legged tick (Ixodes scapularis) or the western black-legged tick (Ixodes pacificus). Little information is available regarding either the prevalence of this agent in cats or the dynamics of vector transmission. Four hundred and sixty feline blood samples from sites throughout the United States were assayed for antibodies to A. phagocytophilum using an indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA). Results of the prevalence study showed that 20 samples (4.3%) were positive for A. phagocytophilum antibodies by IFA at a 1:50 dilution, however these results could not be confirmed by PCR analysis. PCR analysis for other cross-reacting Ehrlichia/Anaplasma spp. was also negative. These results demonstrate that natural infection of A. phagocytophilum in cats is uncommon. PMID:17493756

  6. Identification of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in patients with erythema migrans.

    PubMed

    Hulínská, D; Votýpka, J; Vanousová, D; Hercogová, J; Hulínský, V; Drevová, H; Kurzová, Z; Uherková, L

    2009-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum has been first isolated from the blood of two Czech patients simultaneously with a cultivation of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato from their erythema migrans lesions. Cultivation of different Borrelia spp. from 12 erythema migrans biopsies, from 2 blood, one liquor and one placenta sample in BSK-H medium was successful. Adapted conventional methods targeting 16S rRNA and OspA genes for real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and partial sequencing of these genes together with microscopical examinations of the blood smears provided a direct detection of the B. afzelii, B. burgdorferi, B. garinii, B. valaisiana and B. bissettii in the skin, B. garinii in the blood, placenta and liquor in 24 (36.3 %) patients, and A. phagocytophilum in 10 (15 %) patients with erythema migrans. Positive indirect IgM immunofluorescence against Anaplasma sp. was obtained in 7 cases, specific IgG antibodies were detected in 12 patients. Three women suffering from erythema migrans in the first trimester had positive PCR for Anaplasma and/or for Borrelia in the blood and two of them, later, in the placenta. Interpretation of laboratory data can bring important contribution to establishing the role of Anaplasma sp. in erythema migrans and forming the principle of precaution with laboratory diagnosis during pregnancy which always should be reflected in the resistance of Anaplasma sp. toward penicillins. PMID:19649743

  7. Anaplasma phagocytophilum in questing Ixodes ricinus ticks from Romania.

    PubMed

    Matei, Ioana Adriana; Kalmár, Zsuzsa; Magdaş, Cristian; Magdaş, Virginia; Toriay, Hortenzia; Dumitrache, Mirabela Oana; Ionică, Angela Monica; D'Amico, Gianluca; Sándor, Attila D; Mărcuţan, Daniel Ioan; Domşa, Cristian; Gherman, Călin Mircea; Mihalca, Andrei Daniel

    2015-04-01

    Granulocytic anaplasmosis is a common vector-borne disease of humans and animals with natural transmission cycle that involves tick vectors, among which Ixodes ricinus is the most important. The present paper reports the prevalence and geographical distribution of A. phagocytophilum in 10,438 questing Ixodes ricinus ticks collected at 113 locations from 40 counties of Romania. The unfed ticks were examined for the presence of A. phagocytophilum by PCR targeting a portion of ankA gene. The overall prevalence of infection was 3.42%, with local prevalences ranging between 0.29% and 22.45%, with an average prevalence of 5.39% in the infected localities. The infection with A. phagocytophilum was detected in 72 out of 113 localities and in 34 out of 40 counties. The highest prevalence was recorded in females followed by males and nymphs. The results and the distribution model have shown a large distribution of A. phagocytophilum, covering Romania's entire territory. This study is the first large scale survey of the presence of A. phagocytophilum in questing I. ricinus ticks from Romania. PMID:25838178

  8. Identification and Characterization of Anaplasma phagocytophilum Proteins Involved in Infection of the Tick Vector, Ixodes scapularis

    PubMed Central

    Kocan, Katherine M.; Bonzón-Kulichenko, Elena; Alberdi, Pilar; Blouin, Edmour F.; Weisheit, Sabine; Mateos-Hernández, Lourdes; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Bell-Sakyi, Lesley; Vancová, Marie; Bílý, Tomáš; Meyer, Damien F.; Sterba, Jan; Contreras, Marinela; Rudenko, Nataliia; Grubhoffer, Libor; Vázquez, Jesús; de la Fuente, José

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging zoonotic pathogen transmitted by Ixodes scapularis that causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Here, a high throughput quantitative proteomics approach was used to characterize A. phagocytophilum proteome during rickettsial multiplication and identify proteins involved in infection of the tick vector, I. scapularis. The first step in this research was focused on tick cells infected with A. phagocytophilum and sampled at two time points containing 10–15% and 65–71% infected cells, respectively to identify key bacterial proteins over-represented in high percentage infected cells. The second step was focused on adult female tick guts and salivary glands infected with A. phagocytophilum to compare in vitro results with those occurring during bacterial infection in vivo. The results showed differences in the proteome of A. phagocytophilum in infected ticks with higher impact on protein synthesis and processing than on bacterial replication in tick salivary glands. These results correlated well with the developmental cycle of A. phagocytophilum, in which cells convert from an intracellular reticulated, replicative form to the nondividing infectious dense-core form. The analysis of A. phagocytophilum differentially represented proteins identified stress response (GroEL, HSP70) and surface (MSP4) proteins that were over-represented in high percentage infected tick cells and salivary glands when compared to low percentage infected cells and guts, respectively. The results demonstrated that MSP4, GroEL and HSP70 interact and bind to tick cells, thus playing a role in rickettsia-tick interactions. The most important finding of these studies is the increase in the level of certain bacterial stress response and surface proteins in A. phagocytophilum-infected tick cells and salivary glands with functional implication in tick-pathogen interactions. These results gave a new dimension to the role of these stress response and surface

  9. Global proteomic analysis of two tick-borne emerging zoonotic agents: Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, Mingqun ..; Kikuchi, Takane; Brewer, Heather M.; Norbeck, Angela D.; Rikihisa, Yasuko

    2011-02-17

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis are obligatory intracellular {alpha}-proteobacteria that infect human leukocytes and cause potentially fatal emerging zoonoses. In the present study, we determined global protein expression profiles of these bacteria cultured in the human promyelocytic leukemia cell line, HL-60. Mass spectrometric (MS) analyses identified a total of 1,212 A. phagocytophilum and 1,021 E. chaffeensis proteins, representing 89.3 and 92.3% of the predicted bacterial proteomes, respectively. Nearly all bacterial proteins ({approx}99%) with known functions were expressed, whereas only approximately 80% of hypothetical proteins were detected in infected human cells. Quantitative MS/MS analyses indicated that highly expressed proteins in both bacteria included chaperones, enzymes involved in biosynthesis and metabolism, and outer membrane proteins, such as A. phagocytophilum P44 and E. chaffeensis P28/OMP-1. Among 113 A. phagocytophilum p44 paralogous genes, 110 of them were expressed and 88 of them were encoded by pseudogenes. In addition, bacterial infection of HL-60 cells up-regulated the expression of human proteins involved mostly in cytoskeleton components, vesicular trafficking, cell signaling, and energy metabolism, but down regulated some pattern recognition receptors involved in innate immunity. Our proteomics data represent a comprehensive analysis of A. phagocytophilum and E. chaffeensis proteomes, and provide a quantitative view of human host protein expression profiles regulated by bacterial infection. The availability of these proteomic data will provide new insights into biology and pathogenesis of these obligatory intracellular pathogens.

  10. Subversion of NPC1 pathway of cholesterol transport by Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Xiong, Qingming; Rikihisa, Yasuko

    2013-01-01

    Summary Intracellular cholesterol amounts, distribution, and traffic are tightly regulated to maintain the healthy eukaryotic cell function. However, how intracellular pathogens that require cholesterol, interact with the host cholesterol homeostasis and traffic is not well understood. Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligatory intracellular and cholesterol-robbing bacterium, which causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Here we found that a subset of cholesterol-binding membrane protein, Niemann–Pick type C1 (NPC1)-bearing vesicles devoid of lysosomal markers were upregulated in HL-60 cells infected with A. phagocytophilum, and trafficked to live bacterial inclusions. The NPC1 localization to A. phagocytophilum inclusions was abolished by low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-derived cholesterol traffic inhibitor U18666A. Studies using NPC1 siRNA and the cell line with cholesterol traffic defect demonstrated that the NPC1 function is required for bacterial cholesterol acquisition and infection. Furthermore, trans-Golgi network-specific soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors, vesicle-associated membrane protein (VAMP4) and syntaxin 16, which are associated with NPC1 and LDL-derived cholesterol vesicular transport were recruited to A. phagocytophilum inclusions, and VAMP4 was required for bacteria infection. Taken together, A. phagocytophilum is the first example of a pathogen that subverts the NPC1 pathway of intracellular cholesterol transport and homeostasis for bacterial inclusion membrane biogenesis and cholesterol capture. PMID:22212234

  11. Anaplasma phagocytophilum surface protein AipA mediates invasion of mammalian host cells

    PubMed Central

    Seidman, David; Ojogun, Nore; Walker, Naomi J.; Mastronunzio, Juliana; Kahlon, Amandeep; Hebert, Kathryn S.; Karandashova, Sophia; Miller, Daniel P.; Tegels, Brittney K.; Marconi, Richard T.; Fikrig, Erol; Borjesson, Dori L.; Carlyon, Jason A.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Anaplasma phagocytophilum, which causes granulocytic anaplasmosis in humans and animals, is a tick-transmitted obligate intracellular bacterium that mediates its own uptake into neutrophils and non-phagocytic cells. Invasins of obligate intracellular pathogens are attractive targets for protecting against or curing infection because blocking the internalization step prevents survival of these organisms. The complement of A. phagocytophilum invasins is incompletely defined. Here, we report the significance of a novel A. phagocytophilum invasion protein, AipA. A. phagocytophilum induced aipA expression during transmission feeding of infected ticks on mice. The bacterium upregulated aipA transcription when it transitioned from its non-infectious reticulate cell morphotype to its infectious dense-cored morphotype during infection of HL-60 cells. AipA localized to the bacterial surface and was expressed during in vivo infection. Of the AipA regions predicted to be surface-exposed, only residues 1 to 87 (AipA1–87) were found to be essential for host cell invasion. Recombinant AipA1–87 protein bound to and competitively inhibited A. phagocytophilum infection of mammalian cells. Antiserum specific for AipA1–87, but not other AipA regions, antagonized infection. Additional blocking experiments using peptide-specific antisera narrowed down the AipA invasion domain to residues 9 to 21. An antisera combination targeting AipA1–87 together with two other A. phagocytophilum invasins, OmpA and Asp14, nearly abolished infection of host cells. This study identifies AipA as an A. phagocytophilum surface protein that is critical for infection, demarcates its invasion domain, and establishes a rationale for targeting multiple invasins to protect against granulocytic anaplasmosis. PMID:24612118

  12. The infection of reintroduced ruminants - Bison bonasus and Alces alces - with Anaplasma phagocytophilum in northern Poland.

    PubMed

    Karbowiak, Grzegorz; Víchová, Bronislava; Werszko, Joanna; Demiaszkiewicz, Aleksander W; Pyziel, Anna M; Sytykiewicz, Hubert; Szewczyk, Tomasz; Peťko, Branislav

    2015-12-01

    The north-eastern part of Poland is considered an area of high risk for infection with tick-borne diseases, including with human granulocytic ehrlichiosis (HGE) agents. The etiological agent of HGE is Anaplasma phagocytophilum. As the animal reservoir for A. phagocytophilum in the environment serve the species from Cervidae and Bovidae families. European bison (Bison bonasus) and elk (Alces alces) are the big ruminant species, reintroduced to the forests of Middle Europe after many decades of absence. In the foci of zoonotic diseases they are able to play a role as natural reservoir to pathogens, however, their status as protected animals means their study has been rare and fragmentary. The studies of B. bonasus were conducted in Białowieża Primeval Forest and A. alces in Biebrza National Park. PCR amplifications were performed using primers amplifing the end of the groES gene, the intergenic spacer and approximately two-thirds of the groEL gene in the first round, and primers that span a 395-bp region of the groEL gene were used in the second round. The positive results were obtained in B. bonasus and A. alces, the prevalence of infection was 66.7 and 20.0%, respectively. Randomly selected samples were sequenced, sequences were compared with GenBank entries using Blast N2.2.13 and determined as A. phagocytophilum. The results presented herein are the first record of the presence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in A. alces, and at the same time confirm the previous observations regarding the infection of B. bonasus with A. phagocytophilum. PMID:26408585

  13. Analysis of the population structure of Anaplasma phagocytophilum using multilocus sequence typing.

    PubMed

    Huhn, Christian; Winter, Christina; Wolfsperger, Timo; Wüppenhorst, Nicole; Strašek Smrdel, Katja; Skuballa, Jasmin; Pfäffle, Miriam; Petney, Trevor; Silaghi, Cornelia; Dyachenko, Viktor; Pantchev, Nikola; Straubinger, Reinhard K; Schaarschmidt-Kiener, Daniel; Ganter, Martin; Aardema, Matthew L; von Loewenich, Friederike D

    2014-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is a Gram-negative obligate intracellular bacterium that replicates in neutrophils. It is transmitted via tick-bite and causes febrile disease in humans and animals. Human granulocytic anaplasmosis is regarded as an emerging infectious disease in North America, Europe and Asia. However, although increasingly detected, it is still rare in Europe. Clinically apparent A. phagocytophilum infections in animals are mainly found in horses, dogs, cats, sheep and cattle. Evidence from cross-infection experiments that A. phagocytophilum isolates of distinct host origin are not uniformly infectious for heterologous hosts has led to several approaches of molecular strain characterization. Unfortunately, the results of these studies are not always easily comparable, because different gene regions and fragment lengths were investigated. Multilocus sequence typing is a widely accepted method for molecular characterization of bacteria. We here provide for the first time a universal typing method that is easily transferable between different laboratories. We validated our approach on an unprecedented large data set of almost 400 A. phagocytophilum strains from humans and animals mostly from Europe. The typability was 74% (284/383). One major clonal complex containing 177 strains was detected. However, 54% (49/90) of the sequence types were not part of a clonal complex indicating that the population structure of A. phagocytophilum is probably semiclonal. All strains from humans, dogs and horses from Europe belonged to the same clonal complex. As canine and equine granulocytic anaplasmosis occurs frequently in Europe, human granulocytic anaplasmosis is likely to be underdiagnosed in Europe. Further, wild boars and hedgehogs may serve as reservoir hosts of the disease in humans and domestic animals in Europe, because their strains belonged to the same clonal complex. In contrast, as they were only distantly related, roe deer, voles and shrews are unlikely to

  14. Antigen variability in Anaplasma phagocytophilum during chronic infection of a reservoir host

    PubMed Central

    Foley, Patrick; Barbet, Anthony; Foley, Janet

    2012-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligately intracellular, tick-transmitted, bacterial pathogen of humans and other animals. In order to evade host immunity during the course of infection, A. phagocytophilum utilizes gene conversion to shuffle approximately 100 functional pseudogenes into a single expression cassette of the msp2(p44) gene, which encodes the major surface antigen, major surface protein 2 (Msp2). The role and extent of msp2(p44) recombination in a reservoir host for A. phagocytophilum have not been evaluated. In the current study, we explored patterns of recombination and expression site variability of the msp2(p44) gene in three chronically infected woodrats, a reservoir for the disease in the Western USA. All three woodrats developed persistent infection of at least 6 months duration; two of them maintained active infection for at least 8 months. In total, we detected the emergence of 60 unique msp2(p44) expression site variants with no common temporal patterns of expression site recombination among the three A. phagocytophilum populations. Both the strength of infection (i.e. pathogen load) and the genetic diversity of pseudogenes detected at the msp2(p44) expression site fluctuated periodically during the course of infection. An analysis of the genomic pseudogene exhaustion rate showed that the repertoire of pseudogenes available to the A. phagocytophilum population could in theory become depleted within a year. However, the apparent emergence of variant pseudogenes suggests that the pathogen could potentially evade host immunity indefinitely. Our findings suggest a tightly co-evolved relationship between A. phagocytophilum and woodrats in which the pathogen perpetually evades host immunity yet causes no detectable disease. PMID:22859615

  15. Evaluation of squirrels (Rodentia: Sciuridae) as ecologically significant hosts for Anaplasma phagocytophilum in California.

    PubMed

    Nieto, Nathan C; Foley, Janet E

    2008-07-01

    Granulocytic anaplasmosis (GA), caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum, is a potentially fatal, emerging rickettsial disease of humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. The purpose of this study was to determine whether sciurids from multiple areas of northern California were infested with ticks or exposed to or infected with A. phagocytophilum using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and indirect-fluorescent antibody (IFA) serology. Sciurids of nine different tree- and ground-dwelling species were assessed: arboreal squirrels (western and eastern gray squirrels, Sciurus griseus and S. carolinensis, and Douglas squirrels, Tamiasciurus douglasii) but not northern flying squirrels (Glaucomys sabrinus) had greater evidence of exposure and current infection than did semiarboreal or ground dwelling sciurids (California ground squirrels, Spermophilus beecheyi, and chipmunks, Tamias spp.). Western gray squirrels had the most extensive exposure (70.7% seroprevalence and 12.1% PCR prevalence). Positive squirrels were identified in all regions where squirrels were collected. A logistic regression identified being a western gray squirrel (OR = 20.5, P = 2.95 X 10(-8)) and from the north coastal region of California (OR = 9.052, P = 1.41 X 10(-6)) as having the highest risk of exposure to A. phagocytophilum. Five of nine sciurid species had evidence of infestation with Ixodes pacificus or I. spinipalpis that could vector A. phagocytophilum. Extensive exposure from multiple areas suggests sciurids may be important in the maintenance of GA in California and indicates that studies of reservoir competence of these species are warranted. PMID:18714881

  16. First Report of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia microti in Rodents in Finland

    PubMed Central

    Begon, Michael; Birtles, Richard J.; Bown, Kevin J.; Koskela, Esa; Mappes, Tapio; Watts, Phillip C.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Tick-borne diseases pose an increasingly important public health problem in Europe. Rodents are the reservoir host for many tick-transmitted pathogens, including Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia microti, which can cause human granulocytic anaplasmosis and babesiosis, respectively. To estimate the presence of these pathogens in rodents in Finland, we examined blood samples from 151 bank voles (Myodes glareolus) and demonstrate, for the first time, that A. phagocytophilum and B. microti commonly infect bank voles (in 22% and 40% of animals, respectively) in Finland. Sequence analysis of a fragment of 18S rRNA showed that the B. microti strain isolated was identical to the Munich strain, which is considered to be nonzoonotic. The A. phagocytophilum strain (based on a fragment of the msp4 gene) was identical to one found earlier in rodents in the United Kingdom that is transmitted by the tick Ixodes trianguliceps, all the life stages of which feed on small mammals. The infection probability of B. microti in the bank voles was the greater the older the individual was, and males were more often infected than females. A. phagocytophilum infection probability first increased and then decreased with the age of individual without any difference between sexes. While these pathogens presumably pose a limited zoonotic risk to humans in Finland, they might have important interactions with other rodent pathogens and therefore affect infection dynamics of, for example, zoonotic pathogens. PMID:24848684

  17. First report of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia microti in rodents in Finland.

    PubMed

    Kallio, Eva R; Begon, Michael; Birtles, Richard J; Bown, Kevin J; Koskela, Esa; Mappes, Tapio; Watts, Phillip C

    2014-06-01

    Tick-borne diseases pose an increasingly important public health problem in Europe. Rodents are the reservoir host for many tick-transmitted pathogens, including Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia microti, which can cause human granulocytic anaplasmosis and babesiosis, respectively. To estimate the presence of these pathogens in rodents in Finland, we examined blood samples from 151 bank voles (Myodes glareolus) and demonstrate, for the first time, that A. phagocytophilum and B. microti commonly infect bank voles (in 22% and 40% of animals, respectively) in Finland. Sequence analysis of a fragment of 18S rRNA showed that the B. microti strain isolated was identical to the Munich strain, which is considered to be nonzoonotic. The A. phagocytophilum strain (based on a fragment of the msp4 gene) was identical to one found earlier in rodents in the United Kingdom that is transmitted by the tick Ixodes trianguliceps, all the life stages of which feed on small mammals. The infection probability of B. microti in the bank voles was the greater the older the individual was, and males were more often infected than females. A. phagocytophilum infection probability first increased and then decreased with the age of individual without any difference between sexes. While these pathogens presumably pose a limited zoonotic risk to humans in Finland, they might have important interactions with other rodent pathogens and therefore affect infection dynamics of, for example, zoonotic pathogens. PMID:24848684

  18. Reservoir Competence of the Redwood Chipmunk (Tamias Ochrogenys) for Anaplasma Phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Foley, Janet E.

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Granulocytic anaplasmosis (GA) is an emerging tick-transmitted disease that persists in rodent- Ixodes ricinus-complex tick cycles across the Holarctic. Although the putative reservoir for anaplasmosis in the western United States is the dusky-footed woodrat (Neotoma fuscipes), this rodent was not shown reservoir-competent because of failure of infection from woodrats to other animals via ticks. Redwood chipmunks are common in habitats where Anaplasma phagocytophilum is common, have high PCR- and seroprevalence, and are infested with a diversity of Ixodes spp. ticks. Experimental infection of seven wild-caught A. phagocytophilum-negative redwood chipmunks induced persistent periods of recurrent rickettsemia during the persistent phase of infection. Of three animals for which xenodiagnosis was attempted, all successfully infected pools of I. pacificus larvae during the primary rickettsemia. We show that chipmunks are reservoir-competent for GA and may be important for maintaining infection in nature. PMID:19327022

  19. Anaplasma phagocytophilum Asp14 Is an Invasin That Interacts with Mammalian Host Cells via Its C Terminus To Facilitate Infection

    PubMed Central

    Kahlon, Amandeep; Ojogun, Nore; Ragland, Stephanie A.; Seidman, David; Troese, Matthew J.; Ottens, Andrew K.; Mastronunzio, Juliana E.; Truchan, Hilary K.; Walker, Naomi J.; Borjesson, Dori L.; Fikrig, Erol

    2013-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum, a member of the family Anaplasmataceae, is the tick-transmitted obligate intracellular bacterium that causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis. The life cycle of A. phagocytophilum is biphasic, transitioning between the noninfectious reticulate cell (RC) and infectious dense-cored (DC) forms. We analyzed the bacterium's DC surface proteome by selective biotinylation of surface proteins, NeutrAvidin affinity purification, and mass spectrometry. Transcriptional profiling of selected outer membrane protein candidates over the course of infection revealed that aph_0248 (designated asp14 [14-kDa A. phagocytophilum surface protein]) expression was upregulated the most during A. phagocytophilum cellular invasion. asp14 transcription was induced during transmission feeding of A. phagocytophilum-infected ticks on mice and was upregulated when the bacterium engaged its receptor, P-selectin glycoprotein ligand 1. Asp14 localized to the A. phagocytophilum surface and was expressed during in vivo infection. Treating DC organisms with Asp14 antiserum or preincubating mammalian host cells with glutathione S-transferase (GST)–Asp14 significantly inhibited infection of host cells. Moreover, preincubating host cells with GST-tagged forms of both Asp14 and outer membrane protein A, another A. phagocytophilum invasin, pronouncedly reduced infection relative to treatment with either protein alone. The Asp14 domain that is sufficient for cellular adherence and invasion lies within the C-terminal 12 to 24 amino acids and is conserved among other Anaplasma and Ehrlichia species. These results identify Asp14 as an A. phagocytophilum surface protein that is critical for infection, delineate its invasion domain, and demonstrate the potential of targeting Asp14 in concert with OmpA for protecting against infection by A. phagocytophilum and other Anaplasmataceae pathogens. PMID:23071137

  20. Bioinformatic and mass spectrometry identification of Anaplasma phagocytophilum proteins translocated into host cell nuclei

    PubMed Central

    Sinclair, Sara H. G.; Garcia-Garcia, Jose C.; Dumler, J. Stephen

    2015-01-01

    Obligate intracellular bacteria have an arsenal of proteins that alter host cells to establish and maintain a hospitable environment for replication. Anaplasma phagocytophilum secrets Ankyrin A (AnkA), via a type IV secretion system, which translocates to the nucleus of its host cell, human neutrophils. A. phagocytophilum-infected neutrophils have dramatically altered phenotypes in part explained by AnkA-induced transcriptional alterations. However, it is unlikely that AnkA is the sole effector to account for infection-induced transcriptional changes. We developed a simple method combining bioinformatics and iTRAQ protein profiling to identify potential bacterial-derived nuclear-translocated proteins that could impact transcriptional programming in host cells. This approach identified 50 A. phagocytophilum candidate genes or proteins. The encoding genes were cloned to create GFP fusion protein-expressing clones that were transfected into HEK-293T cells. We confirmed nuclear translocation of six proteins: APH_0062, RplE, Hup, APH_0382, APH_0385, and APH_0455. Of the six, APH_0455 was identified as a type IV secretion substrate and is now under investigation as a potential nucleomodulin. Additionally, application of this approach to other intracellular bacteria such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Chlamydia trachomatis and other intracellular bacteria identified multiple candidate genes to be investigated. PMID:25705208

  1. Epidemiology and Genetic Diversity of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in the San Francisco Bay Area, California.

    PubMed

    Nieto, Nathan C; Salkeld, Daniel J

    2016-07-01

    In California, the agent of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA), Anaplasma phagocytophilum, is transmitted by western black-legged ticks (Ixodes pacificus). Cases of HGA are infrequent in California but do occur annually. We investigated nymphal and adult western black-legged tick populations in 20 recreational areas in California's San Francisco Bay Area (Marin, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, and Sonoma counties). Overall, prevalence of A. phagocytophilum in adult ticks was 0.8% (11/1,465), and in nymphal ticks was 4.2% (24/568), though presence was patchy and prevalence varied locally. We detected significant sequence variation in our quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR)-positive samples. This included four sequences that grouped within a clade that contains clinical human and veterinary isolates as well as four others that grouped with sequences from PCR-positive lizards from northern California. Tick populations in our study sites harbor genetically diverse strains of A. phagocytophilum, which may influence potential risk in the region. PMID:27139447

  2. Anaplasma phagocytophilum Inhibits Apoptosis and Promotes Cytoskeleton Rearrangement for Infection of Tick Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ayllón, Nieves; Villar, Margarita; Busby, Ann T.; Kocan, Katherine M.; Blouin, Edmour F.; Bonzón-Kulichenko, Elena; Galindo, Ruth C.; Mangold, Atilio J.; Alberdi, Pilar; Pérez de la Lastra, José M.; Vázquez, Jesús

    2013-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Infection with this zoonotic pathogen affects gene expression in both the vertebrate host and the tick vector, Ixodes scapularis. Here, we identified new genes, including spectrin alpha chain or alpha-fodrin (CG8) and voltage-dependent anion-selective channel or mitochondrial porin (T2), that are involved in A. phagocytophilum infection/multiplication and the tick cell response to infection. The pathogen downregulated the expression of CG8 in tick salivary glands and T2 in both the gut and salivary glands to inhibit apoptosis as a mechanism to subvert host cell defenses and increase infection. In the gut, the tick response to infection through CG8 upregulation was used by the pathogen to increase infection due to the cytoskeleton rearrangement that is required for pathogen infection. These results increase our understanding of the role of tick genes during A. phagocytophilum infection and multiplication and demonstrate that the pathogen uses similar strategies to establish infection in both vertebrate and invertebrate hosts. PMID:23630955

  3. Human Exposure to Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Two Cities of Northwestern Morocco

    PubMed Central

    Elhamiani Khatat, Sarah; Sahibi, Hamid; Hing, Mony; Alaoui Moustain, Ismail; El Amri, Hamid; Benajiba, Mohammed; Kachani, Malika; Duchateau, Luc; Daminet, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging tick-borne zoonosis with extensive increased interest. Epidemiological data are available in several regions of the USA, Europe and Asia in contrast to other parts of the world such as North Africa. Blood samples of 261 healthy individuals divided in two groups i.e., dog handlers and blood donors were analysed. Indirect immunofluorescent assay using a commercial kit was performed to detect specific A. phagocytophilum IgG. Two dilutions were used to assess the prevalence of seroreactive samples. Demographic variables were assessed as potential risk factors using exact logistic regression. Seropositivity rates reached 37% and 27% in dog handlers and 36% and 22% in blood donors. No statistically significant differences were found in the prevalence rates between the two groups. Analysis of risk factors such as gender, age groups, outdoor activities, self-reported previous exposure to ticks, or contact with domestic animals (dogs, cats, ruminants and horses) did not shown any significant difference. A. phagocytophilum exposure was common in both high-risk population and blood donors in Morocco. PMID:27532208

  4. Human Exposure to Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Two Cities of Northwestern Morocco.

    PubMed

    Elhamiani Khatat, Sarah; Sahibi, Hamid; Hing, Mony; Alaoui Moustain, Ismail; El Amri, Hamid; Benajiba, Mohammed; Kachani, Malika; Duchateau, Luc; Daminet, Sylvie

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging tick-borne zoonosis with extensive increased interest. Epidemiological data are available in several regions of the USA, Europe and Asia in contrast to other parts of the world such as North Africa. Blood samples of 261 healthy individuals divided in two groups i.e., dog handlers and blood donors were analysed. Indirect immunofluorescent assay using a commercial kit was performed to detect specific A. phagocytophilum IgG. Two dilutions were used to assess the prevalence of seroreactive samples. Demographic variables were assessed as potential risk factors using exact logistic regression. Seropositivity rates reached 37% and 27% in dog handlers and 36% and 22% in blood donors. No statistically significant differences were found in the prevalence rates between the two groups. Analysis of risk factors such as gender, age groups, outdoor activities, self-reported previous exposure to ticks, or contact with domestic animals (dogs, cats, ruminants and horses) did not shown any significant difference. A. phagocytophilum exposure was common in both high-risk population and blood donors in Morocco. PMID:27532208

  5. Spatial distribution of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Hepatozoon canis in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in Hungary.

    PubMed

    Tolnai, Z; Sréter-Lancz, Z; Sréter, T

    2015-07-01

    In recent years, Ehrlichia canis and Hepatozoon canis transmitted by Rhipicephalus sanguineus were reported from Hungary. The aim of the present study was to reveal the spatial distribution pattern of pathogens transmitted by R. sanguineus in a sentinel species, red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Hungary and to analyse the relationship of these patterns with landscape and climate by geographical information systems. Fox carcasses, representing 0.5% of the total fox population were randomly selected out of all the foxes of Hungary. The spleen samples of the animals were tested by real-time PCR for Anaplasma platys, Babesia vogeli, E. canis and H. canis infection. Positive results were confirmed by conventional PCR followed by sequencing. The prevalence of H. canis infection was 22.2% (95% CI=18.4-26.4%), and this parasite was detected in all areas including the mountain regions of Hungary. These findings indicate that other tick species or other transmission routes (oral and transplacental) might be in the background of the countrywide distribution of H. canis. Anaplasma platys was not found; nevertheless, the prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection transmitted by Ixodes ricinus was 12.5% (95% CI=9.7-16.1%) in foxes. B. vogeli and E. canis infection was not detected. There was no correlation between environmental parameter values in the home range of foxes and A. phagocytophilum or H. canis infection, which is in line with that observed in the case of tick species infesting foxes in Hungary. The results of this study indicate that R. sanguineus, if present, might be rare in Hungary. Our baseline study can be used for future evaluation of the effect of climate change on the spreading and emergence of R. sanguineus transmitted pathogens in Hungary. PMID:26065623

  6. Wild boar (Sus scrofa) - reservoir host of Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Slovakia.

    PubMed

    Reiterová, Katarína; Špilovská, Silvia; Blaňarová, Lucia; Derdáková, Markéta; Čobádiová, Andrea; Hisira, Vladimír

    2016-06-01

    In Central Europe the wild boar population is permanently growing and consequently Cf foodborne infections. In this study serological and molecular detection of Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora caninum in wild boars was evaluated. Moreover, same samples were screened for the presence and genetic variability of tick-borne bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Blood samples collected from 113 wild boars from Southern Slovakia were examined for antibodies to T. gondii by indirect and to N. caninum by competitive ELISA. The presence of parasitic DNA in blood samples was determined by standard or real time PCR techniques. Antibodies against T. gondii and N. caninum were detected in 45 (39.8%) and 38 (33.6%) animals, respectively. Females were more frequently infected for both pathogens than males. The high seropositivity against both coccidia indicates a permanent occurrence of these pathogens in the studied locality. T. gondii DNA was confirmed in five seropositive boars (4.4%) and N. caninum in 23 blood samples (20.4%). Three out of 23 N. caninum PCR positive animals did not show seropositivity. Three out of 113 blood samples of wild boars were positive for A. phagocytophilum (2.7%). The obtained A. phagocytophilum sequences were 100% identical with GenBankTM isolates from Slovak dog (KC985242); German horse (JF893938) or wild boar (EF143810) and red deer (EF143808) from Poland. Coinfections of T. gondii with N. caninum and N. caninum with A. phagocytophilum were detected in single cases. Results suggest a potential zoonotic risk of toxoplasmosis transmission to humans and the spread of neosporosis to farm animals. PMID:27078648

  7. Differential exposure to Anaplasma phagocytophilum in rodent species in northern California.

    PubMed

    Foley, Janet E; Clueit, S Bernadette; Brown, Richard N

    2008-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is a zoonotic tick-borne rickettsial pathogen that causes granulocytic anaplasmosis (GA) in humans, horses, and dogs. In California, dusky-footed woodrats (Neotoma fuscipes) are a putative reservoir host, and Ixodes pacificus is a vector for transmission from rodents to humans, dogs, and horses. Cases are clustered in coastal and Sierra Nevada foothill regions, but not necessarily in proximity to infected woodrats. This study was designed to compare exposures and active infections of A. phagocytophilum in multiple rodents at a fine spatial scale in a hyperenzootic area and to evaluate the spatial clustering of infections. Of 331 rodents, the seroprevalence was 14.5%, with 60% in tree squirrels (Sciurus griseus and Tamiasciurus douglasii), 29% in woodrats, 14% in flying squirrels (Glaucomys sabrinus), and 5% in chipmunks (Tamias senex). No seropositive ground squirrels (Spermophilus beecheyi) were detected. The seroprevalence was significantly higher west of the Trinity River (23.1%) than east (11.8%) of the river. One Douglas squirrel and one western gray squirrel were polymerase chain reaction (PCR) positive. There was more spatial clustering among seropositive animals compared with all animals tested across the spatial scales evaluated, and this clustering was significantly greater than expected by chance alone. A significant cluster of 24 seropositive animals was found west of the Trinity River, with a population of 56 animals considered within the 50% population-at-risk, and a radius of 362.8 meters. The diversity of cricetine and sciurid rodents infected suggests that squirrels and chipmunks may be underappreciated contributors to A. phagocytophilum ecology in the western United States. The spatial clustering of exposed animals suggests interesting underlying spatially heterogeneous environmental variables that could facilitate the persistence of A. phagocytophilum in nature. PMID:18047398

  8. First molecular detection and phylogenetic analysis of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in shelter dogs in Seoul, Korea.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sukyee; Lee, Seung-Hun; VanBik, Dorene; Kim, Neung-Hee; Kim, Kyoo-Tae; Goo, Youn-Kyoung; Rhee, Man Hee; Kwon, Oh-Deog; Kwak, Dongmi

    2016-07-01

    In this study, the status of Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection was assessed in shelter dogs in Seoul, Korea, with PCR and phylogenetic analyses. Nested PCR on 1058 collected blood samples revealed only one A. phagocytophilum positive sample (female, age <1year, mixed breed, collected from the north of the Han River). The genetic variability of A. phagocytophilum was evaluated by genotyping, using the 16S rRNA, groEL, and msp2 gene sequences of the positive sample. BLASTn analysis revealed that the 16S rRNA, groEL, and msp2 genes had 99.6%, 99.9%, and 100% identity with the following sequences deposited in GenBank: a cat 16S rRNA sequence from Korea (KR021166), a rat groEL sequence from Korea (KT220194), and a water deer msp2 sequence from Korea (HM752099), respectively. Phylogenetic analyses classified the groEL gene into two distinct groups (serine and alanine), whereas the msp2 gene showed a general classification into two groups (USA and Europe) that were further subgrouped according to region. To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first to describe the molecular diagnosis of A. phagocytophilum in dogs reared in Korea. In addition, the high genetic identity of the 16S rRNA and groEL sequences between humans and dogs from the same region suggests a possible epidemiological relation. Given the conditions of climate change, tick ecology, and recent incidence of human granulocytic anaplasmosis in Korea, the findings of this study underscore the need to establish appropriate control programs for tick-borne diseases in Korea. PMID:27130537

  9. Clinical and molecular features of one case of human infection with Anaplasma phagocytophilum from Podlaskie Province in eastern Poland.

    PubMed

    Welc-Falęciak, Renata; Kowalec, Maciej; Zajkowska, Joanna; Pancewicz, Sławomir A; Siński, Edward

    2015-01-01

    The article focuses on the clinical and laboratory diagnosis of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection in one of 28 patients (3.6%; n=1/28 tested samples) with early Lyme borreliosis. The clinical and laboratory results of a 42-year-old patient fulfilled criteria of confirm anaplasmosis and suggest an acute stage of illness. The described case provides strong presumptive evidence that infection in this patient was acquired with a pathogenic strain of A. phagocytophilum through a tick bite. A positive DNA with PCR for A. phagocytophilum infection was sequenced and analyzed phylogenetically. Physicians should consider the possibility of anaplasmosis in patients with early Lyme borreliosis, and A. phagocytophilum should be considered as a differential diagnosis in all patients from an endemic region of potential high risk factors for tick-borne diseases. PMID:26403105

  10. Essential Domains of Anaplasma phagocytophilum Invasins Utilized to Infect Mammalian Host Cells

    PubMed Central

    Seidman, David; Hebert, Kathryn S.; Truchan, Hilary K.; Miller, Daniel P.; Tegels, Brittney K.; Marconi, Richard T.; Carlyon, Jason A.

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum causes granulocytic anaplasmosis, an emerging disease of humans and domestic animals. The obligate intracellular bacterium uses its invasins OmpA, Asp14, and AipA to infect myeloid and non-phagocytic cells. Identifying the domains of these proteins that mediate binding and entry, and determining the molecular basis of their interactions with host cell receptors would significantly advance understanding of A. phagocytophilum infection. Here, we identified the OmpA binding domain as residues 59 to 74. Polyclonal antibody generated against a peptide spanning OmpA residues 59 to 74 inhibited A. phagocytophilum infection of host cells and binding to its receptor, sialyl Lewis x (sLex-capped P-selectin glycoprotein ligand 1. Molecular docking analyses predicted that OmpA residues G61 and K64 interact with the two sLex sugars that are important for infection, α2,3-sialic acid and α1,3-fucose. Amino acid substitution analyses demonstrated that K64 was necessary, and G61 was contributory, for recombinant OmpA to bind to host cells and competitively inhibit A. phagocytophilum infection. Adherence of OmpA to RF/6A endothelial cells, which express little to no sLex but express the structurally similar glycan, 6-sulfo-sLex, required α2,3-sialic acid and α1,3-fucose and was antagonized by 6-sulfo-sLex antibody. Binding and uptake of OmpA-coated latex beads by myeloid cells was sensitive to sialidase, fucosidase, and sLex antibody. The Asp14 binding domain was also defined, as antibody specific for residues 113 to 124 inhibited infection. Because OmpA, Asp14, and AipA each contribute to the infection process, it was rationalized that the most effective blocking approach would target all three. An antibody cocktail targeting the OmpA, Asp14, and AipA binding domains neutralized A. phagocytophilum binding and infection of host cells. This study dissects OmpA-receptor interactions and demonstrates the effectiveness of binding domain-specific antibodies

  11. Comparative strain analysis of Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection and clinical outcomes in a canine model of granulocytic anaplasmosis.

    PubMed

    Scorpio, Diana G; Dumler, J Stephen; Barat, Nicole C; Cook, Judith A; Barat, Christopher E; Stillman, Brett A; DeBisceglie, Kristen C; Beall, Melissa J; Chandrashekar, Ramaswamy

    2011-03-01

    A pilot study was conducted to determine whether existing human or canine strains of Anaplasma phagocytophilum would reproduce clinical disease in experimentally inoculated dogs similar to dogs with naturally acquired granulocytic anaplasmosis. Six hounds were inoculated intravenously with one human and two canine strains of A. phagocytophilum that were propagated in vitro in HL-60 cells or in infected autologous neutrophils. Infected dogs were monitored for lethargy, anorexia, petechiae, lymphadenopathy, and fever. Dogs were assessed for complete blood count (CBC), serum chemistry, and serology (IFA and SNAP® 4Dx®); for A. phagocytophilum blood load by quantitative polymerase chain reaction; and for cytokine production. Prominent clinical signs were generalized lymphadenopathy and scleral injection; only one dog developed fever lasting 4 days. Notable laboratory alterations included sustained leukopenia and thrombocytopenia in all dogs. A. phagocytophilum morulae were noted in blood between days 10 and 11, although all dogs retained A. phagocytophilum DNA in blood through day 60. All dogs seroconverted by days 10-15 by IFA, and by days 17-30 by SNAP 4Dx; cytokine analyses revealed 10-fold increases in interleukin-2 and interleukin-18 in the neutrophil-propagated 98E4 strain-infected dog. All A. phagocytophilum strains produced infection, although canine 98E4 strain reproduced clinical signs, hematologic changes, and inflammatory cytokine elevations most consistent with granulocytic anaplasmosis when recognized clinically. Therefore, this strain should be considered for use in future studies of A. phagocytophilum canine infection models. PMID:20846015

  12. The first report of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and a novel Theileria spp. co-infection in a South African giraffe.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yan; Li, Tongyi; Cui, Yanyan; Wang, Jinhong; Lv, Yali; Wang, Rongjun; Jian, Fuchun; Zhang, Longxian; Wang, Jiantang; Yang, Guangcheng; Ning, Changshen

    2016-08-01

    Organisms of the genera Anaplasma and Theileria are important intracellular bacteria and parasites that cause various tick-borne diseases, threatening the health of numerous animals as well as human beings. In the present study, a 12-month-old male wild South African giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis giraffa) originating from South Africa, and living in Zhengzhou Zoo (located in the urban district of Zhengzhou in the provincial capital of Henan), suddenly developed an unknown fatal disease and died 1day after the onset of the clinical signs. By microscopic examination of Giemsa-stained blood smears combined with nested PCR and DNA sequence analysis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Anaplasma bovis and a novel Theileria spp. were found in the blood of this giraffe. The six other Cervidae animals in the zoo and three ruminants living in the same colony house with them were found to be negative for both Anaplasma and Theileria in their blood specimens. We report on the first case of an A. phagocytophilum infection and the occurrence of a novel Theileria spp. in the blood of a giraffe. This is the first reported case of a multi-infection of A. bovis, A. phagocytophilum and Theileria spp. in a giraffe, as revealed by microscopic examination of blood smears and the results of nested PCR and DNA sequencing. PMID:27109775

  13. Anaplasma phagocytophilum Infection in Domestic Animals in Ten Provinces/Cities of China

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lijuan; Liu, Hong; Xu, Bianli; Lu, Qunying; Li, Liang; Chang, Litao; Zhang, Xiuchun; Fan, Desheng; Li, Guohua; Jin, Yuming; Cui, Feng; Shi, Yonglin; Li, Weihong; Xu, Jianguo; Yu, Xue Jie

    2012-01-01

    A nationwide epidemiologic investigation of domestic animal infections has been conducted in nine provinces and one city during 2007–2010. Serum samples from a total of 707 goats, 433 cattle, and 219 dogs were collected for detecting Anaplasma phagocytophilum IgG antibody by immunofluorescence assays and the average seroprevalences were 10.05% for dogs, 3.82% for goats, and 0.69% for cattle, respectively. A total of 472 goats, 201 cattle, 102 dog blood clots, and 1,580 ticks were collected for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplifying A. phagocytophilum 16S rRNA genes and the PCR-positive rates were 26.69% for goats, 23.38% for cattle, and 10.89% for dogs. Six species were identified and the average PCR-positive rates were 58.3% for Dermacentor silvarum, 43.9% for Haemaphysalis longicornis, 12.5% for Ixodes persulcatus, 7.5% (3 of 40) for Boophilus microplus, and 5.2% for Rhipicephalus sanguineus, respectively. The evidence in the study indicated the zoonotic Rickettsia is highly prevalent in China. PMID:22764312

  14. Habitat factors influencing distributions of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley.

    PubMed

    Manangan, J S; Schweitzer, S H; Nibbelink, N; Yabsley, M J; Gibbs, S E J; Wimberly, M C

    2007-01-01

    Human monocytotropic ehrlichiosis (HME), caused by the bacterium Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA), caused by the bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum, are two emerging tick-borne zoonoses of concern. Factors influencing geographic distributions of these pathogens are not fully understood, especially at varying spatial extents (regional versus landscape) and resolutions (counties versus smaller land units). We used logistic regression to compare influences of physical environment, land cover composition, and landscape heterogeneity on distributions of A. phagocytophilum and E. chaffeensis at multiple spatial extents. Pathogen presence or absence was determined from white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) serum samples collected from 1981 to 2005. Ecological predictor variables were derived from spatial datasets that represented deer density, elevation, land cover, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), hydrology, and soil moisture. We used three strategies (a priori, exploratory, and spatial extent) to develop models. Best fitting models were applied within a geographic information system to create predictive probability surfaces for each bacterium. Ecological predictor variables generally resulted in better fitting models for E. chaffeensis than A. phagocytophilum (90.5% and 68% sensitivity, respectively), possibly as a result of differences in the natural histories of tick vectors. Although alternative model development strategies produced different models, in all cases bacteria presence or absence was affected by a combination of soil moisture or flooding variables (thought to affect primarily tick vectors) and forest cover or NDVI variables (thought to affect primarily mammalian hosts). This research demonstrates the potential for modeling the distributions of microscopic tick-borne pathogens using coarse regional datasets and emphasizes the importance of forest cover and flooding as environmental constraints, as well as

  15. Anaplasma phagocytophilum groEL gene heterogeneity in Ixodes ricinus larvae feeding on roe deer in Northeastern Italy.

    PubMed

    Carpi, Giovanna; Bertolotti, Luigi; Pecchioli, Elena; Cagnacci, Francesca; Rizzoli, Annapaola

    2009-04-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging tick-borne pathogen with both veterinary and human health implications. The role of wildlife hosts for this pathogen are not well defined, even thought roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) has been suggested to contribute to the occurrence of this tick-borne diseases in Europe. Therefore the aim of the present study was to investigate the potential role of this ungulate species as a reservoir of human pathogenic strains of A. phagocytophilum in a tick-borne diseases endemic area in Northeastern Italy. Ixodes ricinus feeding on roe deer were collected and analyzed for the presence for A. phagocytophilum by a molecular approach targeting 16S rRNA and groEL genes. The mean prevalence of A. phagocytophilum recorded was 5.11%, highlighting the ability of roe deer to infect the I. ricinus larval stage. The results of further genetic characterization of the strains of A. phagocytophilum herein isolated, based on phylogenetic information contained in groEL gene sequences, showed substantial heterogeneity among sequences analyzed. Nevertheless, these findings suggest that the roe deer population of the Trentino region of Italy harbors strains of A. phagocytophilum of unknown pathogenicity for humans. PMID:18945191

  16. The Prostaglandin E2-EP3 Receptor Axis Regulates Anaplasma phagocytophilum-Mediated NLRC4 Inflammasome Activation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiaowei; Shaw, Dana K; Hammond, Holly L; Sutterwala, Fayyaz S; Rayamajhi, Manira; Shirey, Kari Ann; Perkins, Darren J; Bonventre, Joseph V; Velayutham, Thangam S; Evans, Sean M; Rodino, Kyle G; VieBrock, Lauren; Scanlon, Karen M; Carbonetti, Nicholas H; Carlyon, Jason A; Miao, Edward A; McBride, Jere W; Kotsyfakis, Michail; Pedra, Joao H F

    2016-08-01

    Rickettsial agents are sensed by pattern recognition receptors but lack pathogen-associated molecular patterns commonly observed in facultative intracellular bacteria. Due to these molecular features, the order Rickettsiales can be used to uncover broader principles of bacterial immunity. Here, we used the bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the agent of human granulocytic anaplasmosis, to reveal a novel microbial surveillance system. Mechanistically, we discovered that upon A. phagocytophilum infection, cytosolic phospholipase A2 cleaves arachidonic acid from phospholipids, which is converted to the eicosanoid prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) via cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2) and the membrane associated prostaglandin E synthase-1 (mPGES-1). PGE2-EP3 receptor signaling leads to activation of the NLRC4 inflammasome and secretion of interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-18. Importantly, the receptor-interacting serine/threonine-protein kinase 2 (RIPK2) was identified as a major regulator of the immune response against A. phagocytophilum. Accordingly, mice lacking COX2 were more susceptible to A. phagocytophilum, had a defect in IL-18 secretion and exhibited splenomegaly and damage to the splenic architecture. Remarkably, Salmonella-induced NLRC4 inflammasome activation was not affected by either chemical inhibition or genetic ablation of genes associated with PGE2 biosynthesis and signaling. This divergence in immune circuitry was due to reduced levels of the PGE2-EP3 receptor during Salmonella infection when compared to A. phagocytophilum. Collectively, we reveal the existence of a functionally distinct NLRC4 inflammasome illustrated by the rickettsial agent A. phagocytophilum. PMID:27482714

  17. The Prostaglandin E2-EP3 Receptor Axis Regulates Anaplasma phagocytophilum-Mediated NLRC4 Inflammasome Activation

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaowei; Shaw, Dana K.; Hammond, Holly L.; Sutterwala, Fayyaz S.; Rayamajhi, Manira; Shirey, Kari Ann; Perkins, Darren J.; Bonventre, Joseph V.; Velayutham, Thangam S.; Evans, Sean M.; Rodino, Kyle G.; VieBrock, Lauren; Scanlon, Karen M.; Carbonetti, Nicholas H.; Carlyon, Jason A.; Miao, Edward A.; McBride, Jere W.; Kotsyfakis, Michail

    2016-01-01

    Rickettsial agents are sensed by pattern recognition receptors but lack pathogen-associated molecular patterns commonly observed in facultative intracellular bacteria. Due to these molecular features, the order Rickettsiales can be used to uncover broader principles of bacterial immunity. Here, we used the bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the agent of human granulocytic anaplasmosis, to reveal a novel microbial surveillance system. Mechanistically, we discovered that upon A. phagocytophilum infection, cytosolic phospholipase A2 cleaves arachidonic acid from phospholipids, which is converted to the eicosanoid prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) via cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2) and the membrane associated prostaglandin E synthase-1 (mPGES-1). PGE2-EP3 receptor signaling leads to activation of the NLRC4 inflammasome and secretion of interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-18. Importantly, the receptor-interacting serine/threonine-protein kinase 2 (RIPK2) was identified as a major regulator of the immune response against A. phagocytophilum. Accordingly, mice lacking COX2 were more susceptible to A. phagocytophilum, had a defect in IL-18 secretion and exhibited splenomegaly and damage to the splenic architecture. Remarkably, Salmonella-induced NLRC4 inflammasome activation was not affected by either chemical inhibition or genetic ablation of genes associated with PGE2 biosynthesis and signaling. This divergence in immune circuitry was due to reduced levels of the PGE2-EP3 receptor during Salmonella infection when compared to A. phagocytophilum. Collectively, we reveal the existence of a functionally distinct NLRC4 inflammasome illustrated by the rickettsial agent A. phagocytophilum. PMID:27482714

  18. Evidence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Borrelia burgdorferi infection in cats after exposure to wild-caught adult Ixodes scapularis.

    PubMed

    Lappin, Michael R; Chandrashekar, Ramaswamy; Stillman, Brett; Liu, Jiayou; Mather, Thomas N

    2015-07-01

    Cats are infected by Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Borrelia burgdorferi when exposed to infected Ixodes scapularis (black-legged ticks). The purpose of our study was to allow wild-caught I. scapularis to feed on healthy research cats (n = 4) and temporally evaluate for A. phagocytophilum DNA in blood by a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay as well as for antibody responses to the B. burgdorferi C6 peptide, to the A. phagocytophilum P44 peptide, and to a novel A. phagocytophilum peptide (P44-4). Prior to I. scapularis infestation, all cats were negative for antibodies against both organisms based on a kit optimized for dog serum, and negative for A. phagocytophilum DNA in blood using a conventional PCR assay. Using the pre-infestation samples, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for detecting antibodies against the P44-4 peptide was optimized. Cats were infested with wild-caught I. scapularis for 7 days. Genomic DNA of A. phagocytophilum was amplified from the blood before antibodies were detected in all 4 cats. Antibodies against the C6 peptide, P44 peptide, and P44-4 peptide were detected in the sera of all 4 cats. Antibodies against P44-4 were detected prior to those against P44 in 3 out of 4 cats. The results suggest that a PCR assay should be considered in acutely ill cats with suspected anaplasmosis that are seronegative. PMID:26179101

  19. The infection of questing Dermacentor reticulatus ticks with Babesia canis and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in the Chernobyl exclusion zone.

    PubMed

    Karbowiak, Grzegorz; Vichová, Bronislavá; Slivinska, Kateryna; Werszko, Joanna; Didyk, Julia; Peťko, Branislav; Stanko, Michal; Akimov, Igor

    2014-08-29

    Tick occurrence was studied in the Chernobyl exclusion zone (CEZ) during the August-October 2009-2012. Dermacentor reticulatus ticks were collected using the flagging method and then screened for infection with Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia canis by a PCR method incorporating specific primers and sequence analysis. The prevalence of infection with B. canis canis and A. phagocytophilum was found to be 3.41% and 25.36%, respectively. The results present the first evidence of B. canis canis and A. phagocytophilum in questing D. reticulatus ticks from the Chernobyl exclusion zone. They also reveal the presence of tick-borne disease foci in areas with no human activity, and confirm that they can be maintained in areas after a nuclear disaster with radioactive contamination. PMID:24953751

  20. Nidicolous ticks of small mammals in Anaplasma phagocytophilum-enzootic sites in northern California

    PubMed Central

    Foley, Janet; Rejmanek, Daniel; Fleer, Katryna; Nieto, Nathan

    2011-01-01

    Ixodes spp. tick-borne zoonotic diseases are present across the Holarctic in humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. Small mammals are reservoirs for the rickettsial pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum and tick vectors may include catholic-feeding bridge vectors as well as host-specialist or nidicolous ticks. Far western North American communities in which A. phagocytophilum is maintained are complex ecologically, with multiple reservoir host and tick species, multiple strains of the bacterial pathogen A. phagocytophilum and differences in dynamics of hosts and vectors across heterogeneous landscapes. We evaluated sites in northern California in order to identify primarily nidicolous ticks and the hosts they infest. A total of 667 ticks was found in 11 study sites, including 288 on flags and 379 attached to small mammals. Larvae were over-represented among attached ticks and adults on flags. The most abundant species was I. pacificus. Two-hundred fourteen nidicolous ticks were found, most abundantly I. angustus and I. spinipalpis. All adult I. ochotonae, I. auritulus, I. angustus, I. jellisoni, and I. woodi were female, while the male:female ratio of I. spinipalpis was 1.2:1 and 1:1 for I. pacificus. The greatest number of ticks was obtained from Tamias ochrogenys, Peromyscus spp., and Neotoma fuscipes. Of 234 small mammal individuals that were infested with Ixodes spp., only 81 (34.6%) were infested with I. pacificus. The remaining infested small mammals hosted nidicolous tick species. Eight ticks were PCR-positive, including 6 I. pacificus (one adult, one larva, and 6 nymphs), and 2 adult I. ochotonae and high PCR prevalences of 18% and 9% were detected in woodrats and chipmunks, respectively. Nymphal I. angustus ticks were active year-long with a possible increase in August while larval activity was only observed in December and spring months and adults only during spring and fall. Overall, we show high tick species richness and year-round high levels of

  1. Structure of the type IV secretion system in different strains of Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an intracellular organism in the Order Rickettsiales that infects diverse animal species and is causing an emerging disease in humans, dogs and horses. Different strains have very different cell tropisms and virulence. For example, in the U.S., strains have been described that infect ruminants but not dogs or rodents. An intriguing question is how the strains of A. phagocytophilum differ and what different genome loci are involved in cell tropisms and/or virulence. Type IV secretion systems (T4SS) are responsible for translocation of substrates across the cell membrane by mechanisms that require contact with the recipient cell. They are especially important in organisms such as the Rickettsiales which require T4SS to aid colonization and survival within both mammalian and tick vector cells. We determined the structure of the T4SS in 7 strains from the U.S. and Europe and revised the sequence of the repetitive virB6 locus of the human HZ strain. Results Although in all strains the T4SS conforms to the previously described split loci for vir genes, there is great diversity within these loci among strains. This is particularly evident in the virB2 and virB6 which are postulated to encode the secretion channel and proteins exposed on the bacterial surface. VirB6-4 has an unusual highly repetitive structure and can have a molecular weight greater than 500,000. For many of the virs, phylogenetic trees position A. phagocytophilum strains infecting ruminants in the U.S. and Europe distant from strains infecting humans and dogs in the U.S. Conclusions Our study reveals evidence of gene duplication and considerable diversity of T4SS components in strains infecting different animals. The diversity in virB2 is in both the total number of copies, which varied from 8 to 15 in the herein characterized strains, and in the sequence of each copy. The diversity in virB6 is in the sequence of each of the 4 copies in the single locus and the

  2. Nidicolous ticks of small mammals in Anaplasma phagocytophilum-enzootic sites in northern California.

    PubMed

    Foley, Janet; Rejmanek, Daniel; Fleer, Katryna; Nieto, Nathan

    2011-06-01

    Ixodes spp. tick-borne zoonotic diseases are present across the Holarctic in humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. Small mammals are reservoirs for the rickettsial pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum and tick vectors may include catholic-feeding bridge vectors as well as host-specialist or nidicolous ticks. Far western North American communities in which A. phagocytophilum is maintained are complex ecologically, with multiple reservoir host and tick species, multiple strains of the bacterial pathogen A. phagocytophilum and differences in dynamics of hosts and vectors across heterogeneous landscapes. We evaluated sites in northern California in order to identify primarily nidicolous ticks and the hosts they infest. A total of 667 ticks was found in 11 study sites, including 288 on flags and 379 attached to small mammals. Larvae were over-represented among attached ticks and adults on flags. The most abundant species was I. pacificus. Two-hundred fourteen nidicolous ticks were found, most abundantly I. angustus and I. spinipalpis. All adult I. ochotonae, I. auritulus, I. angustus, I. jellisoni, and I. woodi were female, while the male:female ratio of I. spinipalpis was 1.2:1 and 1:1 for I. pacificus. The greatest number of ticks was obtained from Tamias ochrogenys, Peromyscus spp., and Neotoma fuscipes. Of 234 small mammal individuals that were infested with Ixodes spp., only 81 (34.6%) were infested with I. pacificus. The remaining infested small mammals hosted nidicolous tick species. Eight ticks were PCR-positive, including 6 I. pacificus (one adult, one larva, and 6 nymphs), and 2 adult I. ochotonae and high PCR prevalences of 18% and 9% were detected in woodrats and chipmunks, respectively. Nymphal I. angustus ticks were active year-long with a possible increase in August while larval activity was only observed in December and spring months and adults only during spring and fall. Overall, we show high tick species richness and year-round high levels of

  3. Infection of Ixodes spp. tick cells with different Anaplasma phagocytophilum isolates induces the inhibition of apoptotic cell death.

    PubMed

    Alberdi, Pilar; Ayllón, Nieves; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Bell-Sakyi, Lesley; Zweygarth, Erich; Stuen, Snorre; de la Fuente, José

    2015-09-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an intracellular rickettsial pathogen transmitted by Ixodes spp. ticks, which causes granulocytic anaplasmosis in humans, horses and dogs and tick-borne fever (TBF) in ruminants. In the United States, human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) is highly prevalent while TBF has not been reported. However, in Europe the situation is the opposite, with high prevalence for TBF in sheep and low prevalence of HGA. The origin of these differences has not been identified and our hypothesis is that different A. phagocytophilum isolates impact differently on tick vector capacity through inhibition of apoptosis to establish infection of the tick vector. In this study we used three different isolates of A. phagocytophilum of human, canine and ovine origin to infect the Ixodes ricinus-derived cell line IRE/CTVM20 and the Ixodes scapularis-derived cell line ISE6 in order to characterize the effect of infection on the level of tick cell apoptosis. Inhibition of apoptosis was observed by flow cytometry as early as 24h post-infection for both tick cell lines and all three isolates of A. phagocytophilum, suggesting that pathogen infection inhibits apoptotic pathways to facilitate infection independently of the origin of the A. phagocytophilum isolate and tick vector species. However, infection with A. phagocytophilum isolates inhibited the intrinsic apoptosis pathway at different levels in I. scapularis and I. ricinus cells. These results suggested an impact of vector-pathogen co-evolution on the adaptation of A. phagocytophilum isolates to grow in tick cells as each isolate grew better in the tick cell line derived from its natural vector species. These results increase our understanding of the mechanisms of A. phagocytophilum infection and multiplication and suggest that multiple mechanisms may affect disease prevalence in different geographical regions. PMID:26183310

  4. Sensitive multiplex PCR assay to differentiate Lyme spirochetes and emerging pathogens Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia microti

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The infection with Borrelia burgdorferi can result in acute to chronic Lyme disease. In addition, coinfection with tick-borne pathogens, Babesia species and Anaplasma phagocytophilum has been increasing in endemic regions of the USA and Europe. The currently used serological diagnostic tests are often difficult to interpret and, moreover, antibodies against the pathogens persist for a long time making it difficult to confirm the cure of the disease. In addition, these tests cannot be used for diagnosis of early disease state before the adaptive immune response is established. Since nucleic acids of the pathogens do not persist after the cure, DNA-based diagnostic tests are becoming highly useful for detecting infectious diseases. Results In this study, we describe a real-time multiplex PCR assay to detect the presence of B. burgdorferi, B. microti and A. phagocytophilum simultaneously even when they are present in very low copy numbers. Interestingly, this quantitative PCR technique is also able to differentiate all three major Lyme spirochete species, B. burgdorferi, B. afzelii, and B. garinii by utilizing a post-PCR denaturation profile analysis and a single molecular beacon probe. This could be very useful for diagnosis and discrimination of various Lyme spirochetes in European countries where all three Lyme spirochete species are prevalent. As proof of the principle for patient samples, we detected the presence of low number of Lyme spirochetes spiked in the human blood using our assay. Finally, our multiplex assay can detect all three tick-borne pathogens in a sensitive and specific manner irrespective of the level of each pathogen present in the sample. We anticipate that this novel diagnostic method will be able to simultaneously diagnose early to chronic stages of Lyme disease, babesiosis and anaplasmosis using the patients’ blood samples. Conclusion Real-time quantitative PCR using specific primers and molecular beacon probes for the selected

  5. An O-Methyltransferase Is Required for Infection of Tick Cells by Anaplasma phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Oliva Chávez, Adela S.; Fairman, James W.; Felsheim, Roderick F.; Nelson, Curtis M.; Herron, Michael J.; Higgins, LeeAnn; Burkhardt, Nicole Y.; Oliver, Jonathan D.; Markowski, Todd W.; Kurtti, Timothy J.; Edwards, Thomas E.; Munderloh, Ulrike G.

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the causative agent of Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis (HGA), is an obligately intracellular α-proteobacterium that is transmitted by Ixodes spp ticks. However, the pathogen is not transovarially transmitted between tick generations and therefore needs to survive in both a mammalian host and the arthropod vector to complete its life cycle. To adapt to different environments, pathogens rely on differential gene expression as well as the modification of proteins and other molecules. Random transposon mutagenesis of A. phagocytophilum resulted in an insertion within the coding region of an o-methyltransferase (omt) family 3 gene. In wild-type bacteria, expression of omt was up-regulated during binding to tick cells (ISE6) at 2 hr post-inoculation, but nearly absent by 4 hr p.i. Gene disruption reduced bacterial binding to ISE6 cells, and the mutant bacteria that were able to enter the cells were arrested in their replication and development. Analyses of the proteomes of wild-type versus mutant bacteria during binding to ISE6 cells identified Major Surface Protein 4 (Msp4), but also hypothetical protein APH_0406, as the most differentially methylated. Importantly, two glutamic acid residues (the targets of the OMT) were methyl-modified in wild-type Msp4, whereas a single asparagine (not a target of the OMT) was methylated in APH_0406. In vitro methylation assays demonstrated that recombinant OMT specifically methylated Msp4. Towards a greater understanding of the overall structure and catalytic activity of the OMT, we solved the apo (PDB_ID:4OA8), the S-adenosine homocystein-bound (PDB_ID:4OA5), the SAH-Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCA), and SAM- Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCL) X-ray crystal structures of the enzyme. Here, we characterized a mutation in A. phagocytophilum that affected the ability of the bacteria to productively infect cells from its natural vector. Nevertheless, due to the lack of complementation, we cannot rule out secondary mutations

  6. An O-Methyltransferase Is Required for Infection of Tick Cells by Anaplasma phagocytophilum.

    PubMed

    Oliva Chávez, Adela S; Fairman, James W; Felsheim, Roderick F; Nelson, Curtis M; Herron, Michael J; Higgins, LeeAnn; Burkhardt, Nicole Y; Oliver, Jonathan D; Markowski, Todd W; Kurtti, Timothy J; Edwards, Thomas E; Munderloh, Ulrike G

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the causative agent of Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis (HGA), is an obligately intracellular α-proteobacterium that is transmitted by Ixodes spp ticks. However, the pathogen is not transovarially transmitted between tick generations and therefore needs to survive in both a mammalian host and the arthropod vector to complete its life cycle. To adapt to different environments, pathogens rely on differential gene expression as well as the modification of proteins and other molecules. Random transposon mutagenesis of A. phagocytophilum resulted in an insertion within the coding region of an o-methyltransferase (omt) family 3 gene. In wild-type bacteria, expression of omt was up-regulated during binding to tick cells (ISE6) at 2 hr post-inoculation, but nearly absent by 4 hr p.i. Gene disruption reduced bacterial binding to ISE6 cells, and the mutant bacteria that were able to enter the cells were arrested in their replication and development. Analyses of the proteomes of wild-type versus mutant bacteria during binding to ISE6 cells identified Major Surface Protein 4 (Msp4), but also hypothetical protein APH_0406, as the most differentially methylated. Importantly, two glutamic acid residues (the targets of the OMT) were methyl-modified in wild-type Msp4, whereas a single asparagine (not a target of the OMT) was methylated in APH_0406. In vitro methylation assays demonstrated that recombinant OMT specifically methylated Msp4. Towards a greater understanding of the overall structure and catalytic activity of the OMT, we solved the apo (PDB_ID:4OA8), the S-adenosine homocystein-bound (PDB_ID:4OA5), the SAH-Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCA), and SAM- Mn2+ bound (PDB_ID:4PCL) X-ray crystal structures of the enzyme. Here, we characterized a mutation in A. phagocytophilum that affected the ability of the bacteria to productively infect cells from its natural vector. Nevertheless, due to the lack of complementation, we cannot rule out secondary mutations

  7. Isolation, propagation and preliminary characterisation of Anaplasma phagocytophilum from roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) in the tick cell line IDE8.

    PubMed

    Silaghi, Cornelia; Kauffmann, Melanie; Passos, Lygia M F; Pfister, Kurt; Zweygarth, Erich

    2011-12-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligate intracellular bacterium causing granulocytic anaplasmosis in dogs, horses, and humans and tick-borne fever of ruminants. The bacterium has been detected in a variety of other mammals including wild ruminants without overt clinical signs of disease. Isolates in cell culture have been obtained from humans, dogs, horses, sheep, and ticks, but no strain from wild ruminants exists in cell culture in Europe. From September to November 2010, EDTA blood samples were collected from the jugular vein of 19 shot roe deer from a forest in southern Germany. The presence of specific A. phagocytophilum DNA was demonstrated with a real-time PCR targeting the msp2 gene in all 19 animals. Subsequently, blood cells were used to inoculate the tick cell line IDE8. The first infected IDE8 cells were detected in Giemsa-stained smears 57 days post inoculation. Only one roe deer yielded a positive culture which has been propagated for 9 consecutive passages thus far representing 228 days in culture. Further analysis of the A. phagocytophilum strain was performed by PCR followed by sequencing for the partial 16S rRNA, groEL, msp2, and msp4 genes. Phylogenetic topology of groEL and msp4 sequences placed the roe deer isolate in close proximity to sequences available from roe deer and goats from the neighbouring Alpine regions of Austria and Switzerland, and of msp2 with other ruminant species. This represents the first isolation of A. phagocytophilum in a tick cell line directly from an infected wild ruminant reservoir host, Capreolus capreolus, in Europe. The availability of a cultured A. phagocytophilum strain isolated from roe deer will allow us to study the biological characteristics and the pathogenic potential of this strain as well as to compare its host tropism and its genetic and antigenetic properties with those of other A. phagocytophilum strains from other animal species. PMID:22108013

  8. Systems biology of tissue-specific response to Anaplasma phagocytophilum reveals differentiated apoptosis in the tick vector Ixodes scapularis.

    PubMed

    Ayllón, Nieves; Villar, Margarita; Galindo, Ruth C; Kocan, Katherine M; Šíma, Radek; López, Juan A; Vázquez, Jesús; Alberdi, Pilar; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Kopáček, Petr; de la Fuente, José

    2015-03-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging pathogen that causes human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Infection with this zoonotic pathogen affects cell function in both vertebrate host and the tick vector, Ixodes scapularis. Global tissue-specific response and apoptosis signaling pathways were characterized in I. scapularis nymphs and adult female midguts and salivary glands infected with A. phagocytophilum using a systems biology approach combining transcriptomics and proteomics. Apoptosis was selected for pathway-focused analysis due to its role in bacterial infection of tick cells. The results showed tissue-specific differences in tick response to infection and revealed differentiated regulation of apoptosis pathways. The impact of bacterial infection was more pronounced in tick nymphs and midguts than in salivary glands, probably reflecting bacterial developmental cycle. All apoptosis pathways described in other organisms were identified in I. scapularis, except for the absence of the Perforin ortholog. Functional characterization using RNA interference showed that Porin knockdown significantly increases tick colonization by A. phagocytophilum. Infection with A. phagocytophilum produced complex tissue-specific alterations in transcript and protein levels. In tick nymphs, the results suggested a possible effect of bacterial infection on the inhibition of tick immune response. In tick midguts, the results suggested that A. phagocytophilum infection inhibited cell apoptosis to facilitate and establish infection through up-regulation of the JAK/STAT pathway. Bacterial infection inhibited the intrinsic apoptosis pathway in tick salivary glands by down-regulating Porin expression that resulted in the inhibition of Cytochrome c release as the anti-apoptotic mechanism to facilitate bacterial infection. However, tick salivary glands may promote apoptosis to limit bacterial infection through induction of the extrinsic apoptosis pathway. These dynamic changes in response to A

  9. Detection of Anaplasma phagocytophilum genotypes that are potentially virulent for human in wild ruminants and Ixodes ricinus in Central Italy.

    PubMed

    Di Domenico, M; Pascucci, I; Curini, V; Cocco, A; Dall'Acqua, F; Pompilii, C; Cammà, C

    2016-07-01

    Human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) is an emerging tick-borne zoonosis worldwide. As is the case for many tick-borne diseases, the epidemiological cycle is associated to the environmental conditions, including the presence of wild vertebrate reservoir hosts, vectors, climate and vegetation. In this study a total number of 87 spleen samples of wild ruminants carcasses from Central Italy, and 77 Ixodes ricinus collected from the same dead animals were screened for Anaplasma phagocytophilum by using Real Time PCR. A. phagocytophilum DNA was detected in 75%, 66.7% and 54.2% of the spleen samples from red deer (Cervus elaphus), Apennine chamois (Rupicapra pyrenaica ornata) and roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) respectively, whereas it was detected in the 31.2% of I. ricinus. A total of 27 positive samples were characterized by sequencing a portion of the groEL gene. Two A. phagocytophilum lineages could clearly be delineated from the phylogenetic tree. Four sequences from red deer, 2 from I. ricinus and 1 from Apennine chamois clustered into lineage I together with those previously described as virulent genotypes related to HGA. The presence of A. phagocytophilum DNA in the Apennine chamois represents the first report for this Italian endemic subspecies. PMID:27020736

  10. Anaplasma phagocytophilum Infects Mast Cells via α1,3-Fucosylated but Not Sialylated Glycans and Inhibits IgE-Mediated Cytokine Production and Histamine Release ▿

    PubMed Central

    Ojogun, Nore; Barnstein, Brian; Huang, Bernice; Oskeritzian, Carole A.; Homeister, Jonathon W.; Miller, Daniel; Ryan, John J.; Carlyon, Jason A.

    2011-01-01

    Mast cells are sentinels for infection. Upon exposure to pathogens, they release their stores of proinflammatory cytokines, chemokines, and histamine. Mast cells are also important for the control of certain tick-borne infections. Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligate intracellular tick-transmitted bacterium that infects neutrophils to cause the emerging disease granulocytic anaplasmosis. A. phagocytophilum adhesion to and infection of neutrophils depend on sialylated and α1,3-fucosylated glycans. We investigated the hypotheses that A. phagocytophilum invades mast cells and inhibits mast cell activation. We demonstrate that A. phagocytophilum binds and/or infects murine bone marrow-derived mast cells (BMMCs), murine peritoneal mast cells, and human skin-derived mast cells. A. phagocytophilum infection of BMMCs depends on α1,3-fucosylated, but not sialylated, glycans. A. phagocytophilum binding to and invasion of BMMCs do not elicit proinflammatory cytokine secretion. Moreover, A. phagocytophilum-infected cells are inhibited in the release of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukin 6 (IL-6), IL-13, and histamine following stimulation with IgE or antigen. Thus, A. phagocytophilum mitigates mast cell activation. These findings potentially represent a novel means by which A. phagocytophilum usurps host defense mechanisms and shed light on the interplay between mast cells and vector-borne bacterial pathogens. PMID:21536789

  11. Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Questing Ixodes ricinus Ticks: Comparison of Prevalences and Partial 16S rRNA Gene Variants in Urban, Pasture, and Natural Habitats

    PubMed Central

    Pfister, Kurt; Thiel, Claudia; Herb, Ingrid; Mahling, Monia; Silaghi, Cornelia

    2013-01-01

    Urban, natural, and pasture areas were investigated for prevalences and 16S rRNA gene variants of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in questing Ixodes ricinus ticks. The prevalences differed significantly between habitat types, and year-to-year variations in prevalence and habitat-dependent occurrence of 16S rRNA gene variants were detected. PMID:23263964

  12. Prevalence of Human-Active and Variant 1 Strains of the Tick-Borne Pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Hosts and Forests of Eastern North America

    PubMed Central

    Keesing, Felicia; McHenry, Diana J.; Hersh, Michelle; Tibbetts, Michael; Brunner, Jesse L.; Killilea, Mary; LoGiudice, Kathleen; Schmidt, Kenneth A.; Ostfeld, Richard S.

    2014-01-01

    Anaplasmosis is an emerging infectious disease caused by infection with the bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum. In the eastern United States, A. phagocytophilum is transmitted to hosts through the bite of the blacklegged tick, Ixodes scapularis. We determined the realized reservoir competence of 14 species of common vertebrate hosts for ticks by establishing the probability that each species transmits two important strains of A. phagocytophilum (A. phagocytophilum human-active, which causes human cases, and A. phagocytophilum variant 1, which does not) to feeding larval ticks. We also sampled questing nymphal ticks from ∼150 sites in a single county over 2 years and sampled over 6 years at one location. White-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus) and Eastern chipmunks (Tamias striatus) were the most competent reservoirs for infection with the A. phagocytophilum human-active strain. Across the county, prevalence in ticks for both strains together was 8.3%; ticks were more than two times as likely to be infected with A. phagocytophilum human-active as A. phagocytophilum variant 1. PMID:24865688

  13. Unique strains of Anaplasma phagocytophilum segregate among diverse questing and non-questing Ixodes tick species in the western United States

    PubMed Central

    Rejmanek, Daniel; Freycon, Pauline; Bradburd, Gideon; Dinstell, Jenna; Foley, Janet

    2013-01-01

    The emerging tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum infects humans, domestic animals, and wildlife throughout the Holarctic. In the western U.S., the ecology of A. phagocytophilum is particularly complex, with multiple pathogen strains, tick vectors, and reservoir hosts. A recent phylogenetic analysis of A. phagocytophilum strains isolated from various small mammal hosts in California documented distinct clustering of woodrat strains separate from sciurid (chipmunk and squirrel) strains. Here, we identified strains of A. phagocytophilum in various Ixodes tick species in California and related these genotypes to those found among reservoir and clinical hosts from the same areas. The sequences from all of the nidicolous (nest-dwelling) Ixodes ticks grouped within a clade that also contained all of the woodrat-origin A. phagocytophilum strains. Two of the I. pacificus sequences were also grouped within this woodrat clade, while the remaining five belonged to a less genetically diverse clade that included several sciurid-origin strains as well as a dog, a horse, and a human strain. By comparing A. phagocytophilum strains from multiple sources concurrently, we were able to gain a clearer picture of how A. phagocytophilum strains in the western U.S. are partitioned, which hosts and vectors are most likely to be infected with a particular strain, and which tick species and reservoir hosts pose the greatest health risk to humans and domestic animals. PMID:23994335

  14. Efficacy of sarolaner in the prevention of Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum transmission from infected Ixodes scapularis to dogs.

    PubMed

    Honsberger, Nicole A; Six, Robert H; Heinz, Thomas J; Weber, Angela; Mahabir, Sean P; Berg, Thomas C

    2016-05-30

    The efficacy of sarolaner (Simparica™, Zoetis) to prevent transmission primarily of Borrelia burgdorferi and secondarily of Anaplasma phagocytophilum from infected wild-caught Ixodes scapularis to dogs was evaluated in a placebo-controlled laboratory study. Twenty-four purpose-bred laboratory Beagles seronegative for B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum antibodies were allocated randomly to one of three treatment groups: placebo administered orally on Days 0 and 7, or sarolaner at 2mg/kg administered orally on Day 0 (28 days prior to tick infestation) or on Day 7 (21 days prior to tick infestation). On Day 28, each dog was infested with approximately 25 female and 25 male wild caught adult I. scapularis that were determined to have prevalence of 57% for B. burgdorferi and 6.7% for A. phagocytophilum by PCR. In situ tick counts were conducted on Days 29 and 30. On Day 33, all ticks were counted and removed. Acaricidal efficacy was calculated based on the reduction of geometric mean live tick counts in the sarolaner-treated groups compared to the placebo-treated group for each tick count. Blood samples collected from each dog on Days 27, 49, 63, 77, 91 and 104 were tested for the presence of B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum antibodies using the SNAP(®) 4Dx(®) Plus Test, and quantitatively assayed for B. burgdorferi antibodies using an ELISA test. Skin biopsies collected on Day 104 were tested for the presence of B. burgdorferi by bacterial culture and PCR. Geometric mean live tick counts for placebo-treated dogs were 14.8, 12.8, and 19.1 on Days 29, 30, and 33, respectively. The percent reductions in mean live tick counts at 1, 2, and 5 days after infestation were 86.3%, 100%, and 100% for the group treated with sarolaner 21 days prior to infestation, and 90.9%, 97.1%, and 100% for the group treated with sarolaner 28 days prior to infestation. Geometric mean live tick counts for both sarolaner-treated groups were significantly lower than those for the

  15. Comparative Experimental Infection Study in Dogs with Ehrlichia canis, E. chaffeensis, Anaplasma platys and A. phagocytophilum

    PubMed Central

    Nair, Arathy D. S.; Cheng, Chuanmin; Ganta, Chanran K.; Sanderson, Michael W; Alleman, Arthur R.; Munderloh, Ulrike G.; Ganta, Roman R.

    2016-01-01

    Dogs acquire infections with the Anaplasmataceae family pathogens, E. canis, E. chaffeensis, E. ewingii, A. platys and A. phagocytophilum mostly during summer months when ticks are actively feeding on animals. These pathogens are also identified as causing diseases in people. Despite the long history of tick-borne diseases in dogs, much remains to be defined pertaining to the clinical and pathological outcomes of infections with these pathogens. In the current study, we performed experimental infections in dogs with E. canis, E. chaffeensis, A. platys and A. phagocytophilum. Animals were monitored for 42 days to evaluate infection-specific clinical, hematological and pathological differences. All four pathogens caused systemic persistent infections detectible throughout the 6 weeks of infection assessment. Fever was frequently detected in animals infected with E. canis, E. chaffeensis, and A. platys, but not in dogs infected with A. phagocytophilum. Hematological differences were evident in all four infected groups, although significant overlap existed between the groups. A marked reduction in packed cell volume that correlated with reduced erythrocytes and hemoglobin was observed only in E. canis infected animals. A decline in platelet numbers was common with E. canis, A. platys and A. phagocytophilum infections. Histopathological lesions in lung, liver and spleen were observed in all four groups of infected dogs; infection with E. canis had the highest pathological scores, followed by E. chaffeensis, then A. platys and A. phagocytophilum. All four pathogens induced IgG responses starting on day 7 post infection, which was predominantly comprised of IgG2 subclass antibodies. This is the first detailed investigation comparing the infection progression and host responses in dogs after inoculation with four pathogens belonging to the Anaplasmataceae family. The study revealed a significant overlap in clinical, hematological and pathological changes resulting from the

  16. Comparative Experimental Infection Study in Dogs with Ehrlichia canis, E. chaffeensis, Anaplasma platys and A. phagocytophilum.

    PubMed

    Nair, Arathy D S; Cheng, Chuanmin; Ganta, Chanran K; Sanderson, Michael W; Alleman, Arthur R; Munderloh, Ulrike G; Ganta, Roman R

    2016-01-01

    Dogs acquire infections with the Anaplasmataceae family pathogens, E. canis, E. chaffeensis, E. ewingii, A. platys and A. phagocytophilum mostly during summer months when ticks are actively feeding on animals. These pathogens are also identified as causing diseases in people. Despite the long history of tick-borne diseases in dogs, much remains to be defined pertaining to the clinical and pathological outcomes of infections with these pathogens. In the current study, we performed experimental infections in dogs with E. canis, E. chaffeensis, A. platys and A. phagocytophilum. Animals were monitored for 42 days to evaluate infection-specific clinical, hematological and pathological differences. All four pathogens caused systemic persistent infections detectible throughout the 6 weeks of infection assessment. Fever was frequently detected in animals infected with E. canis, E. chaffeensis, and A. platys, but not in dogs infected with A. phagocytophilum. Hematological differences were evident in all four infected groups, although significant overlap existed between the groups. A marked reduction in packed cell volume that correlated with reduced erythrocytes and hemoglobin was observed only in E. canis infected animals. A decline in platelet numbers was common with E. canis, A. platys and A. phagocytophilum infections. Histopathological lesions in lung, liver and spleen were observed in all four groups of infected dogs; infection with E. canis had the highest pathological scores, followed by E. chaffeensis, then A. platys and A. phagocytophilum. All four pathogens induced IgG responses starting on day 7 post infection, which was predominantly comprised of IgG2 subclass antibodies. This is the first detailed investigation comparing the infection progression and host responses in dogs after inoculation with four pathogens belonging to the Anaplasmataceae family. The study revealed a significant overlap in clinical, hematological and pathological changes resulting from the

  17. Prevalence of antibodies against Rickettsia conorii, Babesia canis, Ehrlichia canis, and Anaplasma phagocytophilum antigens in dogs from the Stretto di Messina area (Italy).

    PubMed

    Pennisi, Maria-Grazia; Caprì, Alessandra; Solano-Gallego, Laia; Lombardo, Gabriella; Torina, Alessandra; Masucci, Marisa

    2012-12-01

    The aims of this study were to determine the seroprevalence for Rickettsia conorii, Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, and Babesia canis in outdoor-kennelled dogs (n=249) from the Stretto di Messina (Italy) and to compare seroprevalence in 2 public shelters and 4 privately-owned kennels where different tick-preventive measures were implemented in order to focus on the specific sanitary risk posed by public shelters in southern Italy for tick-borne pathogens. R. conorii (72%) and B. canis (70%) were the most prevalent infections when compared to E. canis (46%) and A. phagocytophilum (38%). Seroprevalence for R. conorii, E. canis, and A. phagocytophilum was significantly higher in public shelters than in private kennels. However, B. canis seropositivity was similar in both types of kennels. In addition, in private kennels where a regular ectocide treatment was carried out by means of spot-on devices, dogs did not present E. canis and A. phagocytophilum antibodies. One hundred fifty-one dogs out of 249 (61%) were seropositive to more than one pathogen with R. conorii and B. canis the most common ones. Coinfections were more frequently found in public-shelter dogs. This study demonstrated high seroprevalences against R. conorii, B. canis, E. canis, and A. phagocytophilum in kennelled dogs from both coastal sites of the Stretto di Messina and the importance of regular tick-bite prevention by means of individual spot-on devices. PMID:23140895

  18. Coinfection of western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus) and other sciurid rodents with Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in California.

    PubMed

    Nieto, Nathan C; Leonhard, Sarah; Foley, Janet E; Lane, Robert S

    2010-01-01

    Overlapping geographic distributions of tick-borne disease agents utilizing the same tick vectors are common, and coinfection of humans, domestic animals, wildlife, and ticks with both Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum has been frequently reported. This study was undertaken in order to evaluate the prevalence of both B. burgdorferi sensu stricto (hereinafter referred to as B. burgdorferi) and A. phagocytophilum in several species of sciurid rodents from northern California, USA. Rodents were either collected dead as road-kills or live-trapped in four state parks from 13 counties. Thirty-seven western gray squirrels (Sciurus griseus), nine nonnative eastern gray squirrels (S. carolinensis) and an eastern fox squirrel (S. niger), four Douglas squirrels (Tamiasciurus douglasii), and two northern flying squirrels (Glaucomys sabrinus) were tested by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and serology for evidence of coinfection. Of the 14 individual S. griseus that were PCR-positive for B. burgdorferi, two (14%) also were PCR-positive for A. phagocytophilum and 11 (79%) had serologic evidence of A. phagocytophilum exposure. Two of the four Douglas squirrels were PCR positive for B. burgdorferi and seropositive to A. phagocytophilum. Evidence of coinfection with these zoonotic pathogens in western gray squirrels suggests that both bacteria may be maintained in a similar transmission cycle involving this sciurid and the western black-legged tick Ixodes pacificus, the primary bridging vector to humans in the far-western US. PMID:20090047

  19. Babesia spp. and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in questing ticks, ticks parasitizing rodents and the parasitized rodents – Analyzing the host-pathogen-vector interface in a metropolitan area

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The aims of this study were to evaluate the host-tick-pathogen interface of Babesia spp. and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in restored areas in both questing and host-attached Ixodes ricinus and Dermacentor reticulatus and their small mammalian hosts. Methods Questing ticks were collected from 5 sites within the city of Leipzig, Germany, in 2009. Small mammals were trapped at 3 of the 5 sites during 2010 and 2011. DNA extracts of questing and host-attached I. ricinus and D. reticulatus and of several tissue types of small mammals (the majority bank voles and yellow-necked mice), were investigated by PCR followed by sequencing for the occurrence of DNA of Babesia spp. and by real-time PCR for A. phagocytophilum. A selected number of samples positive for A. phagocytophilum were further investigated for variants of the partial 16S rRNA gene. Co-infection with Rickettsia spp. in the questing ticks was additionally investigated. Results 4.1% of questing I. ricinus ticks, but no D. reticulatus, were positive for Babesia sp. and 8.7% of I. ricinus for A. phagocytophilum. Sequencing revealed B. microti, B. capreoli and Babesia spp. EU1 in Leipzig and sequence analysis of the partial 16S RNA gene of A. phagocytophilum revealed variants either rarely reported in human cases or associated with cervid hosts. The statistical analysis revealed significantly less ticks infected with A. phagocytophilum in a city park in Leipzig as compared to the other sampling sites. A. phagocytophilum-DNA was detected in 2 bank voles, DNA of B. microti in 1 striped field-mouse and of Babesia sp. EU1 in the skin tissue of a mole. Co-infections were detected. Conclusion Our results show the involvement of small mammals in the natural endemic cycles of tick-borne pathogens. A more thorough understanding of the interactions of ticks, pathogens and hosts is the essential basis for effective preventive control measures. PMID:22950642

  20. Transovarial Transmission of Francisella-Like Endosymbionts and Anaplasma phagocytophilum Variants in Dermacentor albipictus (Acari: Ixodidae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Dermacentor albipictus (Packard) is a North American Ixodid tick that parasitizes deer species but also infests livestock. It is a suspected vector of the agent of anaplasmosis in cattle herds, Anaplasma marginale, but its microbial flora and emerging pathogen vector potential remain under-evaluated...

  1. Surveillance for Ixodes pacificus and the tick-borne pathogens Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Borrelia burgdorferi in birds from California's Inner Coast Range.

    PubMed

    Dingler, Regina J; Wright, Stan A; Donohue, Ann M; Macedo, Paula A; Foley, Janet E

    2014-06-01

    We investigated the involvement of birds in the ecology of the western black-legged tick, Ixodes pacificus, and its associated zoonotic bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum, at two interior coast-range study sites in northern California. Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the agent of granulocytic anaplasmosis (GA), and B. burgdorferi s.s., the agent of Lyme disease (LD), are tick-borne pathogens that are well established in California. We screened blood and ticks from 349 individual birds in 48 species collected in 2011 and 2012 using pathogen-specific PCR. A total of 617 immature I. pacificus was collected with almost three times as many larvae than nymphs. There were 7.5 times more I. pacificus at the Napa County site compared to the Yolo County site. Two of 74 (3%) nymphal pools from an Oregon junco (Junco hyemalis) and a hermit thrush (Catharus guttatus) and 4 individual larvae (all from Oregon juncos) were PCR-positive for B. burgdorferi. Blood samples from a golden-crowned sparrow (Zonotrichia atricapilla) and a European starling (Sturnus vulgaris) were positive for A. phagocytophilum DNA at very low levels. Birds that forage on ground or bark and nest on the ground, as well as some migratory species, are at an increased risk for acquiring I. pacificus. Our findings show that birds contribute to the ecologies of LD and GA in California by serving as a blood-meal source, feeding and transporting immature I. pacificus, and sometimes as a source of Borrelia infection. PMID:24690191

  2. Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato and co-infections with Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Rickettsia spp. in Ixodes ricinus in Hamburg, Germany.

    PubMed

    May, K; Jordan, D; Fingerle, V; Strube, C

    2015-12-01

    To obtain initial data on Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (Spirochaetales: Spirochaetaceae) in Ixodes ricinus (Ixodida: Ixodidae) ticks in Hamburg, Germany, 1400 questing ticks were collected by flagging at 10 different public recreation areas in 2011 and analysed using probe-based quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. The overall rate of infection with B. burgdorferi s.l. was 34.1%; 30.0% of adults were infected (36.7% of females and 26.0% of males), as were 34.5% of nymphs. Significant differences in tick infection rates were observed between the spring and summer/autumn months, as well as among sampling locations. Borrelia genospecies identification by reverse line blotting was successful in 43.6% of positive tick samples. The most frequent genospecies was Borrelia garinii/Borrelia bavariensis, followed by Borrelia afzelii, Borrelia valaisiana, B. burgdorferi sensu stricto, Borrelia spielmanii, Borrelia bissettii and Borrelia lusitaniae. Based on previously published data, co-infection of Borrelia and Rickettsiales spp. was determined in 25.8% of ticks. Overall, 22.9% of ticks were co-infected with Rickettsia spp. (Rickettsiales: Rickettsiaceae), 1.7% with Anaplasma phagocytophilum (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae), and 1.2% with both pathogens. Study results show a high prevalence of Borrelia-positive ticks in recreation areas in the northern German city of Hamburg and the potential health risk to humans in these areas should not be underestimated. PMID:26096626

  3. Tissue-Specific Signatures in the Transcriptional Response to Anaplasma phagocytophilum Infection of Ixodes scapularis and Ixodes ricinus Tick Cell Lines

    PubMed Central

    Alberdi, Pilar; Mansfield, Karen L.; Manzano-Román, Raúl; Cook, Charlotte; Ayllón, Nieves; Villar, Margarita; Johnson, Nicholas; Fooks, Anthony R.; de la Fuente, José

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum are transmitted by Ixodes spp. ticks and have become one of the most common and relevant tick-borne pathogens due to their impact on human and animal health. Recent results have increased our understanding of the molecular interactions between Ixodes scapularis and A. phagocytophilum through the demonstration of tissue-specific molecular pathways that ensure pathogen infection, development and transmission by ticks. However, little is known about the Ixodes ricinus genes and proteins involved in the response to A. phagocytophilum infection. The tick species I. scapularis and I. ricinus are evolutionarily closely related and therefore similar responses are expected in A. phagocytophilum-infected cells. However, differences may exist between I. scapularis ISE6 and I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 tick cells associated with tissue-specific signatures of these cell lines. To address this hypothesis, the transcriptional response to A. phagocytophilum infection was characterized by RNA sequencing and compared between I. scapularis ISE6 and I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 tick cell lines. The transcriptional response to infection of I. scapularis ISE6 cells resembled that of tick hemocytes while the response in I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 cells was more closely related to that reported previously in infected tick midguts. The inhibition of cell apoptosis by A. phagocytophilum appears to be a key adaptation mechanism to facilitate infection of both vertebrate and tick cells and was used to investigate further the tissue-specific response of tick cell lines to pathogen infection. The results supported a role for the intrinsic pathway in the inhibition of cell apoptosis by A. phagocytophilum infection of I. scapularis ISE6 cells. In contrast, the results in I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 cells were similar to those obtained in tick midguts and suggested a role for the JAK/STAT pathway in the inhibition of apoptosis in tick cells infected with A. phagocytophilum. Nevertheless, tick

  4. Tissue-Specific Signatures in the Transcriptional Response to Anaplasma phagocytophilum Infection of Ixodes scapularis and Ixodes ricinus Tick Cell Lines.

    PubMed

    Alberdi, Pilar; Mansfield, Karen L; Manzano-Román, Raúl; Cook, Charlotte; Ayllón, Nieves; Villar, Margarita; Johnson, Nicholas; Fooks, Anthony R; de la Fuente, José

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum are transmitted by Ixodes spp. ticks and have become one of the most common and relevant tick-borne pathogens due to their impact on human and animal health. Recent results have increased our understanding of the molecular interactions between Ixodes scapularis and A. phagocytophilum through the demonstration of tissue-specific molecular pathways that ensure pathogen infection, development and transmission by ticks. However, little is known about the Ixodes ricinus genes and proteins involved in the response to A. phagocytophilum infection. The tick species I. scapularis and I. ricinus are evolutionarily closely related and therefore similar responses are expected in A. phagocytophilum-infected cells. However, differences may exist between I. scapularis ISE6 and I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 tick cells associated with tissue-specific signatures of these cell lines. To address this hypothesis, the transcriptional response to A. phagocytophilum infection was characterized by RNA sequencing and compared between I. scapularis ISE6 and I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 tick cell lines. The transcriptional response to infection of I. scapularis ISE6 cells resembled that of tick hemocytes while the response in I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 cells was more closely related to that reported previously in infected tick midguts. The inhibition of cell apoptosis by A. phagocytophilum appears to be a key adaptation mechanism to facilitate infection of both vertebrate and tick cells and was used to investigate further the tissue-specific response of tick cell lines to pathogen infection. The results supported a role for the intrinsic pathway in the inhibition of cell apoptosis by A. phagocytophilum infection of I. scapularis ISE6 cells. In contrast, the results in I. ricinus IRE/CTVM20 cells were similar to those obtained in tick midguts and suggested a role for the JAK/STAT pathway in the inhibition of apoptosis in tick cells infected with A. phagocytophilum. Nevertheless, tick

  5. Detecting DNAs of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Babesia in the blood of patients suspected of Lyme disease.

    PubMed

    Hermanowska-Szpakowicz, Teresa; Skotarczak, Bogumiła; Kondrusik, Maciej; Rymaszewska, Anna; Sawczuk, Marek; Maciejewska, Agnieszka; Adamska, Małgorzata; Pancewicz, Sławomir; Zajkowska, Joanna

    2004-01-01

    Co-occurrence of granulocytic anaplasmosis, borreliosis and babesiosis in humans is a result of common vectors for the respective pathogens of these diseases, most commonly ticks from the genus Ixodes. Studies on ticks in Europe and also in Poland have shown that several pathogens may co-occur in individuals of I. ricnus. A total of 96 hospitalised patients infected or suspected of being infected with borreliosis were screened for A. phagocytophilum and Babesia sp. DNA. Positive results of PCRs for A. phagocytophilum DNA were obtained for 10 patients, 8 of whom were diagnosed with borreliosis earlier, and 4 of whom were diagnosed with tick-borne encephalitis (on the basis of serological studies of serum and cerebrospinal fluid). None of the 10 patients had clinical or biochemical markers of anaplasmosis, corroborating the existence of asymptomatic anaplasmosis or self-limiting course. in Europe. Similarly, Babesia DNA was not found in the blood of any of the patients. The results of the studies show that in diagnosing tick-borne diseases, clinical examinations should consider infection by two or even three tick-borne pathogens. PMID:15627349

  6. Elimination of Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Rodent Reservoirs and Ixodes scapularis Ticks Using a Doxycycline Hyclate-Laden Bait

    PubMed Central

    Dolan, Marc C.; Schulze, Terry L.; Jordan, Robert A.; Dietrich, Gabrielle; Schulze, Christopher J.; Hojgaard, Andrias; Ullmann, Amy J.; Sackal, Cherilyn; Zeidner, Nordin S.; Piesman, Joseph

    2011-01-01

    A field trial was conducted in a Lyme disease-endemic area of New Jersey to determine the efficacy of a doxycyline hyclate rodent bait to prophylactically protect and cure small-mammal reservoirs and reduce infection rates in questing Ixodes scapularis ticks for Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum. The doxycycline-laden bait was formulated at a concentration of 500 mg/kg and delivered during the immature tick feeding season in rodent-targeted bait boxes. The percentage of infected small mammals recovered from treated areas after 2 years of treatment was reduced by 86.9% for B. burgdorferi and 74% for A. phagocytophilum. Infection rates in questing nymphal ticks for both B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum were reduced by 94.3% and 92%, respectively. Results from this study indicate that doxycycline-impregnated bait is an effective means of reducing infection rates for B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum in both rodent reservoirs and questing I. scapularis ticks. PMID:22144454

  7. Host, habitat and climate preferences of Ixodes angustus (Acari: Ixodidae) and infection with Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in California, USA.

    PubMed

    Stephenson, Nicole; Wong, Johnny; Foley, Janet

    2016-10-01

    The Holarctic tick Ixodes angustus is a competent vector for Borrelia burgdorferi, the etiologic agent of Lyme disease, and possibly Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the etiologic agent of granulocytic anaplasmosis, as well. From 2005 to 2013, we collected host-feeding I. angustus individuals from live-trapped small mammals and by flagging vegetation from 12 study sites in northern and central California, and tested for B. burgdorferi sensu lato, A. phagocytophilum, and Rickettsia spp. DNA by real-time PCR. Among 261 I. angustus collected (259 from hosts and two by flagging), the most common hosts were tree squirrels (20 % of ticks) and chipmunks (37 %). The PCR-prevalence for A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi in ticks was 2 % and zero, respectively. The minimum infection prevalence on pooled DNA samples was 10 % for Rickettsia spp. DNA sequencing of the ompA gene identified this rickettsia as Candidatus Rickettsia angustus, a putative endosymbiont. A zero-inflated negative binomial mixed effects model was used to evaluate geographical and climatological predictors of I. angustus burden. When host species within study site and season within year were included in the model as nested random effects, all significant variables revealed that I. angustus burden increased as temperature decreased. Together with published data, these findings suggest that I. angustus is a host generalist, has a broad geographic distribution, is more abundant in areas with lower temperature within it's range, and is rarely infected with the pathogens A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi. PMID:27416728

  8. Anaplasma phagocytophilum up-regulates some anti-apoptotic genes in neutrophils and pro-inflammatory genes in mononuclear cells of sheep.

    PubMed

    Woldehiwet, Z; Yavari, C

    2014-05-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the causative agent of tick-borne fever (TBF) in sheep and cattle and human granulocytic anaplasmosis, has the unique ability to selectively infect and multiply within the hostile environment of the neutrophil. Previous studies have shown that sheep with TBF are more susceptible to other infections and that infected neutrophils have reduced phagocytic ability and delayed apoptosis. This suggests that survival of A. phagocytophilum in these short-lived cells involves the ability to subvert or resist their bacterial killing, but also to modify the host cells such that the host cells survive long after infection. The present study shows that infection of sheep by A. phagocytophilum is characterized by up-regulation of some anti-apoptotic genes (BCL2, BIRC3 and CFLAR) in neutrophils and up-regulation of genes encoding the pro-inflammatory cytokines interferon-γ, interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-6 in mononuclear cells during the period of bacteraemia. Infection with A. phagocytophilum was also characterized by significant up-regulation of CYBB, which is associated with the respiratory burst of neutrophils. PMID:24602324

  9. Serologic and Molecular Prevalence of Rickettsia helvetica and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Wild Cervids and Domestic Mammals in the Central Parts of Sweden.

    PubMed

    Elfving, Karin; Malmsten, Jonas; Dalin, Anne-Marie; Nilsson, Kenneth

    2015-09-01

    Both Rickettsia helvetica and Anaplasma phagocytophilum are common in Ixodes ricinus ticks in Sweden. Knowledge is limited regarding different animal species' competence to act as reservoirs for these organism. For this reason, blood samples were collected from wild cervids (roe deer, moose) and domestic mammals (horse, cat, dog) in central Sweden, and sera were tested using immunofluorescence assay to detect antibodies against spotted fever rickettsiae using Rickettsia helvetica as antigen. Sera with a titer ≥1:64 were considered as positive, and 23.1% (104/450) of the animals scored positive. The prevalence of seropositivity was 21.5% (23/107) in roe deer, 23.3% (21/90) in moose, 36.5% (23/63) in horses, 22.1% (19/90) in cats, and 17.0% (17/100) in dogs. PCR analysis of 113 spleen samples from moose and sheep from the corresponding areas were all negative for rickettsial DNA. In roe deer, 85% (91/107) also tested seropositive for A. phagocytophilum with a titer cutoff of 1:128. The findings indicate that the surveyed animal species are commonly exposed to rickettsiae and roe deer also to A. phagocytophilum. PMID:26378972

  10. Assessment of antibodies against surface and outer membrane proteins of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Lyme borreliosis and tick-borne encephalitis paediatric patients.

    PubMed

    Krbková, L; Homola, L; Hlaváčová, A; Mikolášek, P; Bednářová, J; Čermáková, Z

    2016-09-01

    To examine evidence of positive antibodies against immunogenic proteins of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in patients with other tick-borne infections and to diagnose possible co-infections, 412 serum specimens were tested by immunoblotting using three specific Anaplasma antigens: surface proteins p44 and Asp62 and outer membrane protein A (OmpA). In total, 284 serum samples from children with Lyme borreliosis and 12 serum samples from children with tick-borne encephalitis were tested. Sera from patients with viral aseptic meningitis (n = 47) and from blood donors (n = 69) were used as controls. Among all serum specimens from patients with tick-borne infections submitted for this study, six samples (2·0%) showed positive IgM reactions and seven samples (2·4%) were IgG positive for A. phagocytophilum by immunoblot. Borderline reactivity was found in 30 samples (10·14%) for IgM and 36 samples (12·2%) for IgG. The difference between patients and blood donors was statistically significant for IgM (P = 0·006) and for IgG (P = 0·0007) antibodies. A statistically significant result was obtained for IgG (P = 0·02) but not for IgM between patients and children with aseptic meningitis. Immunoblot using three specific antigens provides novel information about the positivity of antibodies to A. phagocytophilum in children with other tick-borne infections. Taking into account clinical and laboratory findings of children despite antibody positivity, no case of human granulocytic anaplasmosis was demonstrated. PMID:27180603

  11. Evaluation of the performance of a rapid enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in the detection of Anaplasma phagocytophilum antibodies in horses.

    PubMed

    Veronesi, Fabrizia; Passamonti, Fabrizio; Moretti, Annabella; Morganti, Giulia; Vardi, Doron Moshe; Laus, Fulvio; Marenzoni, Maria Luisa; Spaterna, Andrea; Coletti, Mauro; Fioretti, Daniela Piergili

    2014-05-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the performance of a commercially available rapid enzyme-linked immonosorbent assay, the Snap® 4Dx test, in the detection of Anaplasma phagocytophilum antibodies in horses. Two hundred apparently healthy horses (asymptomatic) and 244 animals showing clinical symptoms (symptomatic), were tested for A. phagocytophilum immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies using both the Snap® 4Dx kit and an indirect fluorescence antibody test (IFAT), with the latter serving as a comparative test. Horses belonging to the symptomatic group were also tested for evidence of active infection with A. phagocytophilum by analysis of IFAT IgM titers and PCR assay amplifying a specific fragment of the 16S rRNA gene. The overall agreement between the results obtained using the two tests, as well as the relative performance exhibited by the Snap® 4Dx test in the two groups, was assessed. Forty of the 45 animals (89%) testing positive for IgG antibodies using IFAT were correctly identified using Snap® 4Dx testing. The agreement between the results of the two tests was very high (k>0.9), with almost identical performances in both symptomatic and asymptomatic animals. Conversely, within the symptomatic group, only 44% (no. 11/25) of Snap® 4Dx positives appeared to be associated with a state of active infection, whereas the remaining 56% (no. 14/25) were related both to not infected animals (no. 1) and to horses whose status of infection needed further evaluations to be confirmed (no. 13/25). This study suggests that the Snap® 4Dx test could represent a valid screening method for use during epidemiological surveys of equine populations. Nevertheless, in-clinic application of the test does not appear to be merited. PMID:24745728

  12. Are patients with erythema migrans who have leukopenia and/or thrombocytopenia coinfected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum or tick-borne encephalitis virus?

    PubMed

    Strle, Franc; Bogovič, Petra; Cimperman, Jože; Maraspin, Vera; Ogrinc, Katarina; Rojko, Tereza; Stupica, Daša; Lusa, Lara; Avšič-Županc, Tatjana; Smrdel, Katja Strašek; Jelovšek, Mateja; Lotrič-Furlan, Stanka

    2014-01-01

    Lyme borreliosis (LB), tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) and human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) are endemic in central part of Slovenia. We tested the hypothesis that patients with erythema migrans (EM) from this region, who have leukopenia and/or thrombocytopenia (typical findings in HGA and in the initial phase of TBE but not in patients with LB) are coinfected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum and/or with TBE virus, i.e. that cytopenia is a result of concomitant HGA or the initial phase of TBE. Comparison of clinical and laboratory findings for 67 patients with EM who disclosed leukopenia/thrombocytopenia with the corresponding results in sex- and age-matched patients with EM and normal blood cell counts revealed no differences. In addition, patients with typical EM and leukopenia and/or thrombocytopenia tested negative for the presence of IgM and IgG antibodies to TBE virus by ELISA as well as for the presence of specific IgG antibodies to A. phagocytophilum antigens by IFA in acute and convalescent serum samples. Thus, none of 67 patients (95% CI: 0 to 5.3%) with typical EM (the presence of this skin lesion attests for early Lyme borreliosis and is the evidence for a recent tick bite) was found to be coinfected with A. phagocytophilum or had a recent primary infection with TBE virus. The findings in the present study indicate that in Slovenia, and probably in other European countries endemic for LB, TBE and HGA, patients with early LB are rarely coinfected with the other tick-transmitted agents. PMID:25057802

  13. Rural Residents in China Are at Increased Risk of Exposure to Tick-Borne Pathogens Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lijuan; Liu, Hong; Xu, Bianli; Zhang, Zhilun; Jin, Yuming; Li, Weiming; Lu, Qunying; Li, Liang; Chang, Litao; Zhang, Xiuchun; Fan, Desheng; Cao, Minghua; Bao, Manli; Zhang, Ying; Guan, Zengzhi; Cheng, Xueqin; Tian, Lina; Wang, Shiwen; Yu, Huilan; Yu, Qiang; Wang, Yong; Zhang, Yonggen; Tang, Xiaoyan; Yin, Jieying; Lao, Shijun; Wu, Bin; Li, Juan; Li, Weihong; Xu, Qiyi; Shi, Yonglin; Huang, Fang

    2014-01-01

    As emerging tick born rickettsial diseases caused by A. phagocytophilum and E. chaffeensis, anaplasmosis and ehrlichiosis have become a serious threat to human and animal health throughout the world. In particular, in China, an unusual transmission of nosocomial cases of human granulocytic anaplasmosis occurred in Anhui Province in 2006 and more recent coinfection case of A. phagocytophilum and E. chaffeensis was documented in Shandong Province. Although the seroprevalence of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (former human granulocytic ehrlichiosis, HGE) has been documented in several studies, these data existed on local investigations, and also little data was reported on the seroprevalence of human monocytic ehrlichiosis (HME) in China. In this cross-sectional epidemiological study, indirect immunofluorescence antibody assay (IFA) proposed by WHO was used to detect A. phagocytophilum and E. chaffeensis IgG antibodies for 7,322 serum samples from agrarian residents from 9 provinces/cities and 819 urban residents from 2 provinces. Our data showed that farmers were at substantially increased risk of exposure. However, even among urban residents, risk was considerable. Seroprevalence of HGA and HME occurred in diverse regions of the country and tended to be the highest in young adults. Many species of ticks were confirmed carrying A. phagocytophilum organisms in China while several kinds of domestic animals including dog, goats, sheep, cattle, horse, wild rabbit, and some small wild rodents were proposed to be the reservoir hosts of A. phagocytophilum. The broad distribution of vector and hosts of the A. phagocytophilum and E. chaffeensis, especially the relationship between the generalized susceptibility of vectors and reservoirs and the severity of the disease's clinical manifestations and the genetic variation of Chinese HGA isolates in China, is urgently needed to be further investigated. PMID:24877080

  14. Role of Migratory Birds in Introduction and Range Expansion of Ixodes scapularis Ticks and of Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in Canada▿

    PubMed Central

    Ogden, N. H.; Lindsay, L. R.; Hanincová, K.; Barker, I. K.; Bigras-Poulin, M.; Charron, D. F.; Heagy, A.; Francis, C. M.; O'Callaghan, C. J.; Schwartz, I.; Thompson, R. A.

    2008-01-01

    During the spring in 2005 and 2006, 39,095 northward-migrating land birds were captured at 12 bird observatories in eastern Canada to investigate the role of migratory birds in northward range expansion of Lyme borreliosis, human granulocytic anaplasmosis, and their tick vector, Ixodes scapularis. The prevalence of birds carrying I. scapularis ticks (mostly nymphs) was 0.35% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.30 to 0.42), but a nested study by experienced observers suggested a more realistic infestation prevalence of 2.2% (95% CI = 1.18 to 3.73). The mean infestation intensity was 1.66 per bird. Overall, 15.4% of I. scapularis nymphs (95% CI = 10.7 to 20.9) were PCR positive for Borrelia burgdorferi, but only 8% (95% CI = 3.8 to 15.1) were positive when excluding nymphs collected at Long Point, Ontario, where B. burgdorferi is endemic. A wide range of ospC and rrs-rrl intergenic spacer alleles of B. burgdorferi were identified in infected ticks, including those associated with disseminated Lyme disease and alleles that are rare in the northeastern United States. Overall, 0.4% (95% CI = 0.03 to 0.41) of I. scapularis nymphs were PCR positive for Anaplasma phagocytophilum. We estimate that migratory birds disperse 50 million to 175 million I. scapularis ticks across Canada each spring, implicating migratory birds as possibly significant in I. scapularis range expansion in Canada. However, infrequent larvae and the low infection prevalence in ticks carried by the birds raise questions as to how B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum become endemic in any tick populations established by bird-transported ticks. PMID:18245258

  15. Characterization of Anaplasma phagocytophilum Major Surface Protein 5 and the Extent of Its Cross-Reactivity with A. marginale

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The major surface protein 5 (MSP5) of A. marginale is the antigen used in a commercially available competitive ELISA for serologic identification of infected cattle. MSP5 is highly conserved in the genus Anaplasma. The objectives of this investigation were to determine the degree of conservation of ...

  16. Prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi (Spirochaetales: Spirochaetaceae), Anaplasma phagocytophilum (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae), and Babesia microti (Piroplasmida: Babesiidae) in Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae) collected from recreational lands in the Hudson Valley Region, New York State.

    PubMed

    Prusinski, M A; Kokas, J E; Hukey, K T; Kogut, S J; Lee, J; Backenson, P B

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Blacklegged ticks, Ixodes scapularis Say, were collected from 27 sites in eight New York State counties from 2003 to 2006 to determine the prevalence and distribution of tick-borne pathogens in public-use areas over a 4-yr period. In total, 11,204 I. scapularis (3,300 nymphs and 7,904 adults) were individually analyzed using polymerase chain reaction to detect the presence of Borrelia burgdorferi (causative agent of Lyme disease), Anaplasma phagocytophilum (formerly Ehrlichia phagocytophila, causative agent of human granulocytic anaplasmosis), and Babesia microti (causative agent of human babesiosis). Overall prevalence of B. burgdorferi, A. phagocytophilum, and B. microti was 14.4, 6.5, and 2.7% in nymphs and 45.7, 12.3, and 2.5% in adult ticks, respectively. Rates varied geographically and temporally during the time period examined, and were related to measurements of tick density. Average rate ofpolymicrobial infection for nymphs and adults, respectively, was 1.5 and 8.5% overall, with 0.5 and 6.3% coinfection of B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum, 1.0 and 1.5% B. burgdorferi and B. microti, and 0.05 and 0.6% A. phagocytophilum and B. microti. Thirty-three individual adult ticks from seven study sites in Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, and Rockland counties tested positive for simultaneous infection with all three agents by multiplex polymerase chain reaction assay. PMID:24605473

  17. Nuclease Tudor-SN Is Involved in Tick dsRNA-Mediated RNA Interference and Feeding but Not in Defense against Flaviviral or Anaplasma phagocytophilum Rickettsial Infection

    PubMed Central

    Ayllón, Nieves; Naranjo, Victoria; Hajdušek, Ondrej; Villar, Margarita; Galindo, Ruth C.; Kocan, Katherine M.; Alberdi, Pilar; Šíma, Radek; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Rückert, Claudia; Bell-Sakyi, Lesley; Kazimírová, Mária; Havlíková, Sabína; Klempa, Boris; Kopáček, Petr; de la Fuente, José

    2015-01-01

    Tudor staphylococcal nuclease (Tudor-SN) and Argonaute (Ago) are conserved components of the basic RNA interference (RNAi) machinery with a variety of functions including immune response and gene regulation. The RNAi machinery has been characterized in tick vectors of human and animal diseases but information is not available on the role of Tudor-SN in tick RNAi and other cellular processes. Our hypothesis is that tick Tudor-SN is part of the RNAi machinery and may be involved in innate immune response and other cellular processes. To address this hypothesis, Ixodes scapularis and I. ricinus ticks and/or cell lines were used to annotate and characterize the role of Tudor-SN in dsRNA-mediated RNAi, immune response to infection with the rickettsia Anaplasma phagocytophilum and the flaviviruses TBEV or LGTV and tick feeding. The results showed that Tudor-SN is conserved in ticks and involved in dsRNA-mediated RNAi and tick feeding but not in defense against infection with the examined viral and rickettsial pathogens. The effect of Tudor-SN gene knockdown on tick feeding could be due to down-regulation of genes that are required for protein processing and blood digestion through a mechanism that may involve selective degradation of dsRNAs enriched in G:U pairs that form as a result of adenosine-to-inosine RNA editing. These results demonstrated that Tudor-SN plays a role in tick RNAi pathway and feeding but no strong evidence for a role in innate immune responses to pathogen infection was found. PMID:26186700

  18. Current Surveys of the Seroprevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi, Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Leishmania infantum, Babesia canis, Angiostrongylus vasorum and Dirofilaria immitis in Dogs in Bulgaria.

    PubMed

    Pantchev, Nikola; Schnyder, Manuela; Vrhovec, Majda Globokar; Schaper, Roland; Tsachev, Ilia

    2015-08-01

    Canine vector-borne diseases (CVBDs) have increasingly become a focus of interest in recent years. Some of the CVBDs are zoonotic and may therefore also represent a risk for the human population. Different factors are in discussion to explain the expansion of vectors and pathogens into formerly unaffected areas. Knowledge of the prevalence and distribution of CVBDs in Bulgaria is scant overall and most data rely on single case descriptions. The aim of the present study was to determine the seroprevalence of important CVBDs in 167 dogs from central-southern Bulgaria (Stara Zagora), with special emphasis on hitherto uninvestigated babesiosis and angiostrongylosis, on poorly investigated Lyme borreliosis and canine granulocytic anaplasmosis, and on the potentially zoonotic dirofilariosis and leishmaniosis. Relatively high prevalence rates were documented for anti-Babesia canis antibodies, Dirofilaria immitis antigen (16.2 %; 27/167 each), anti-Ehrlichia canis (21 %; 35/167) and anti-Anaplasma phagocytophilum antibodies (30.5 - 46.1 %; 51 - 77/167), while Borrelia burgdorferi seroprevalence was low (2.4 %; 4/167). All samples were negative for Leishmania infantum antibodies and Angiostrongylus vasorum antigen and antibodies. In total, 64.7 % (108/167) of the samples indicated infection or exposure to at least one agent and a high proportion of dual infections (39.8 %; 43/108) was demonstrated. Multiple infections with up to four different organisms were also detected. Our data underline the importance of CVBDs and especially of co-infections which could influence the clinical outcome in dogs. PMID:26152413

  19. [Study of the heterogeneity of 16s rRNA gene and groESL operone in the dna samples of Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Ehrlichia muris, and "Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis" determined in the Ixodes persulcatus ticks in the area of Urals, Siberia, and far east of Russia].

    PubMed

    Rar, V A; Epikhina, T I; Livanova, N N; Panov, V V; Doroshenko, E K; Pukhovskaia, N M; Vysochina, N P; Ivanov, L I

    2011-01-01

    A total of 3552 Ixodes persulcatus from Sverdlovsk, Chelyabinsk, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk regions and Khabarovsk Territory were examined on the Ehrlichia and Anaplasma presence by nested PCR based on the 16S rRNA gene. Both Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia muris DNA were found in I. persulcatus in all studied regions. A. Phagocytophilum was detected in 1.3-6.3% of ticks and E. muris - in 2.0-14.1% of ticks. Moreover, "Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis" DNA was found in 8 ticks collected in Novosibirsk, Irkutsk Regions and Khabarovsk Territory. Partial nucleotide sequences of 16S rRNA gene and groESL operone (1240-1300 bp) were determined for 65 samples of A. Phagocytophilum, 17 samples of E. muris and 4 samples of "Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis". Nucleotide sequences of 16S rRNA gene and groESL operone of E. muris and "Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis" were shown to be highly conservative, and nucleotide sequences of groESL operone of both E. muris and "Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis" differed from the sequences found previously in other species of Ixodid tick. On the basis of analysis of the 16S rRNA gene and groESL operone sequences it was concluded that all revealed samples A. Phagocytophilum could be divided into 2 groups. GroESL operone sequences of A. Phagocytophilum from the first group were identical to each other but significantly differed from the known groESL operone sequences (less than 98.2% of similarity), whereas their 16S rRNA gene sequences were identical to the sequence of widely distributed and pathogenic for human A. Phagocytophilum genetic variant (CAHU-HGEl, GenBank AF093788) or differed from it by a single nucleotide substitution. The nucleotide sequences of groESL operone of A. Phagocytophilum from the second group differed from each other by 1-4 nucleotides and were closely related (99.2-99.4% of similarity) to the sequences of groESL operone ofA. phagocytophilum isolates found in Europe in Ixodes ricinus and roe deer. The

  20. DGGE Identification of Microorganisms Associated with Borrelia burgdorferi Sensu Lato- or Anaplasma phagocytophilum-Infected Ixodes ricinus Ticks from Northwest Norway

    PubMed Central

    Vadseth, Hanne Tjelle

    2013-01-01

    Ticks acquire a wide range of microorganisms as a natural part of their lifecycle. Bacteria, viruses, and protozoa can be transmitted to ticks during feeding and free-living phases. DGGE profiling is a molecular method to describe the microbial population associated with ticks and demonstrate some of the complexity and variety of tick-borne microorganisms. The present study profiled a total of 120 I. ricinus ticks, which were divided into three equally sized groups. We found that B. burgdorferi s.l.-infected ticks presented a pattern consisting of bacterial Pseudomonas spp. (67.5%), Bacillus spp. (50%), and Sphingomonas spp. (77.5%), while A. phagocytophilum-infected ticks were associated with Pseudomonas spp. (82.5%) and Sphingomonas spp. (57.5%). All profiles had one or more Pseudomonas species present, and the intramitochondrial endosymbiont Candidatus Midichloria mitochondrii was present in more than 25% of the samples. Statistical analysis demonstrated that the microbial communities were not significantly different between the groups and that the groups could not be characterised by a specific microbial population. PMID:24282414

  1. First molecular survey and identification of Anaplasma spp. in white yaks (Bos grunniens) in China.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jifei; Liu, Zhijie; Niu, Qingli; Liu, Junlong; Guan, Guiquan; Xie, Jingying; Luo, Jianxun; Wang, Shuqing; Wang, Shufang; Yin, Hong

    2016-05-01

    Anaplasmosis is caused by a group of obligate intracellular bacteria in the genus Anaplasma, which are transmitted by ticks and infect humans, domestic animals and wildlife. This study was conducted to determine the prevalence and molecular characterization of Anaplasma spp. in semi-wild white yaks sampled in Tianzhu Tibetan Autonomous County, northwest China. Out of 332 samples tested, 35 (10·9%) were positive for Anaplasma spp. The positive rates were 6·2% (20/322) and 5·3% (17/322) for Anaplasma bovis and Anaplasma phagocytophilum in white yaks, respectively. None of the sample was positive for Anaplasma marginale. Two (0·6%) samples were simultaneously positive to A. bovis and A. phagocytophilum. Sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA gene revealed two genotypes (ApG1 and ApG2) of A. phagocytophilum and two sequence types (ST1 and ST2) of A. bovis in white yaks. This study is the first to document the presence of Anaplasma in white yaks. Our findings extend the host range for Anaplasma species and provide more valuable information for the control and management of anaplasmosis in white yaks. PMID:27003378

  2. Molecular Investigation and Phylogeny of Anaplasma spp. in Mediterranean Ruminants Reveal the Presence of Neutrophil-Tropic Strains Closely Related to A. platys

    PubMed Central

    Zobba, Rosanna; Anfossi, Antonio G.; Pinna Parpaglia, Maria Luisa; Dore, Gian Mario; Chessa, Bernardo; Spezzigu, Antonio; Rocca, Stefano; Visco, Stefano; Pittau, Marco

    2014-01-01

    Few data are available on the prevalence and molecular typing of species belonging to the genus Anaplasma in Mediterranean ruminants. In this study, PCR analysis and sequencing of both 16S rRNA and groEL genes were combined to investigate the presence, prevalence, and molecular traits of Anaplasma spp. in ruminants sampled on the Island of Sardinia, chosen as a subtropical representative area. The results demonstrate a high prevalence of Anaplasma spp. in ruminants, with animals infected by at least four of six Anaplasma species (Anaplasma marginale, A. bovis, A. ovis, and A. phagocytophilum). Moreover, ruminants host a number of neutrophil-tropic strains genetically closely related to the canine pathogen A. platys. The high Anaplasma spp. prevalence and the identification of as-yet-unclassified neutrophil-tropic strains raise concerns about the specificity of serological tests routinely used in ruminants and provide additional background for reconstructing the evolutionary history of species genetically related to A. phagocytophilum. PMID:24162569

  3. Molecular survey and sequence analysis of Anaplasma spp. in cattle and ticks in a Malaysian farm.

    PubMed

    Tay, S T; Koh, F X; Kho, K L; Ong, B L

    2014-12-01

    This study was conducted to determine the occurrence of Anaplasma spp. in the blood samples of cattle, goats, deer and ticks in a Malaysian farm. Using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing approach, Anaplasma spp. was detected from 81(84.4%) of 96 cattle blood samples. All blood samples from 23 goats and 22 deer tested were negative. Based on the analysis of the Anaplasma partial 16S ribosomal RNA gene, four sequence types (genotypes 1 to 4) were identified in this study. Genotypes 1-3 showed high sequence similarity to those of Anaplasma platys/ Anaplasma phagocytophilum, whilst genotype 4 was identical to those of Anaplasma marginale/ Anaplasma centrale/ Anaplasma ovis. Anaplasma DNA was detected from six (5.5%) of 109 ticks which were identified as Rhipicephalus (formely known as Boophilus) microplus ticks collected from the cattle. This study reported for the first time the detection of four Anaplasma sequence types circulating in the cattle population in a farm in Malaysia. The detection of Anaplasma DNA in R. microplus ticks in this study provides evidence that the ticks are one of the potential vectors for transmission of anaplasmosis in the cattle. PMID:25776603

  4. First molecular evidence for the presence of Anaplasma DNA in milk from sheep and goats in China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yan; Lv, Yali; Cui, Yanyan; Wang, Jinhong; Cao, Shuxuan; Jian, Fuchun; Wang, Rongjun; Zhang, Longxian; Ning, Changshen

    2016-07-01

    Anaplasmosis, a disease caused by bacteria in the genus of Anaplasma, imposes economic constraints on animal breeders and also threatens human health. In the present study, we investigated the presence of Anaplasma spp. DNA in milk collected from sheep and goats in China. A total of 120 milk samples and 414 field-sampled blood specimens from sheep and goats were analyzed by PCR and DNA sequencing. Anaplasma ovis was detected in 12 milk samples (three from sheep and nine from goats). The blood specimens corresponding to the A. ovis DNA-positive milk were analyzed for Anaplasma DNA presence, and A. ovis DNA was identified in 10 out of the 12 blood specimens. One goat's milk sample was Anaplasma bovis DNA-positive, as was the corresponding blood sample. Anaplasma phagocytophilum was found in a milk sample and blood sample from one goat. One milk sample from Xinmi in Henan province was simultaneously positive for A. bovis and A. phagocytophilum; however, the corresponding blood was negative for both species. DNA sequencing of the PCR products and phylogenetic analysis confirmed that the sequences from the milk samples matched those of the corresponding blood samples. This is the first report to detect the Anaplasma DNA in milk samples under natural condition, and represents the first evidence of the presence of A. ovis, A. bovis and A. phagocytophilum DNA in milk from sheep and goats. PMID:27038248

  5. Molecular detection of Anaplasma spp. in pangolins (Manis javanica) and wild boars (Sus scrofa) in Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Koh, Fui Xian; Kho, Kai Ling; Panchadcharam, Chandrawathani; Sitam, Frankie Thomas; Tay, Sun Tee

    2016-08-30

    Anaplasma spp. infects a wide variety of wildlife and domestic animals. This study describes the identification of a novel species of Anaplasma (Candidatus Anaplasma pangolinii) from pangolins (Manis javanica) and Anaplasma bovis from wild boars (Sus scrofa) in Malaysia. Based on 16S rRNA gene sequences, Candidatus Anaplasma pangolinii is identified in a distinct branch within the family Anaplasmataceae, exhibiting the closest sequence similarity with the type strains of Anaplasma bovis (97.7%) and Anaplasma phagocytophilum (97.6%). The sequence also aligned closely (99.9%) with that of an Anaplasma spp. (strain AnAj360) detected from Amblyomma javanense ticks. The nearly full length sequence of the 16S rRNA gene derived from two wild boars in this study demonstrated the highest sequence similarity (99.7%) to the A. bovis type strain. Partial 16S rRNA gene fragments of A. bovis were also detected from a small population of Haemaphysalis bispinosa cattle ticks in this study. Our finding suggests a possible spread of two Anaplasma species in the Malaysian wildlife and ticks. The zoonotic potential of the Anaplasma species identified in this study is yet to be determined. PMID:27523941

  6. Anaplasma phagocytophilum—a widespread multi-host pathogen with highly adaptive strategies

    PubMed Central

    Stuen, Snorre; Granquist, Erik G.; Silaghi, Cornelia

    2013-01-01

    The bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum has for decades been known to cause the disease tick-borne fever (TBF) in domestic ruminants in Ixodes ricinus-infested areas in northern Europe. In recent years, the bacterium has been found associated with Ixodes-tick species more or less worldwide on the northern hemisphere. A. phagocytophilum has a broad host range and may cause severe disease in several mammalian species, including humans. However, the clinical symptoms vary from subclinical to fatal conditions, and considerable underreporting of clinical incidents is suspected in both human and veterinary medicine. Several variants of A. phagocytophilum have been genetically characterized. Identification and stratification into phylogenetic subfamilies has been based on cell culturing, experimental infections, PCR, and sequencing techniques. However, few genome sequences have been completed so far, thus observations on biological, ecological, and pathological differences between genotypes of the bacterium, have yet to be elucidated by molecular and experimental infection studies. The natural transmission cycles of various A. phagocytophilum variants, the involvement of their respective hosts and vectors involved, in particular the zoonotic potential, have to be unraveled. A. phagocytophilum is able to persist between seasons of tick activity in several mammalian species and movement of hosts and infected ticks on migrating animals or birds may spread the bacterium. In the present review, we focus on the ecology and epidemiology of A. phagocytophilum, especially the role of wildlife in contribution to the spread and sustainability of the infection in domestic livestock and humans. PMID:23885337

  7. The occurrence of Anaplasma phagocyto- philum in wild bison from the Bialowieza Primeval Forest in Eastern Poland.

    PubMed

    Dzięgiel, Beata; Adaszekl, Łukasz; Krzysiak, Michał; Skrzypczak, Maciej; Adaszek, Michał; Furmaga, Barbara; Winiarczyk, Stanislaw

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the occurrence of Anaplasma spp. in a group of 120 wild bison (Bison bonasus) from the Bialowieza Primeval Forest in eastern Poland and to determine which species of Anaplasma could infect these animals based on a PCR of a part of the 16S rRNA gene followed by sequencing. The PCR technique showed the presence of 16S rRNA Anaplasma spp. genetic material in the blood of 22 from a total of 120 animals. DNA amplification by means of the primers EHR 521 and EHR 747 gave a product size of 252-bp. The sequences of the PCR products obtained showed 100% homology with each other and 100% homology with the Anaplasma phagocytophilum GU 183908 sequence from our earlier study, isolated from a horse with a clinical case of anaplasmosis. The similarity of the sequences with the sequences of the 16S rRNA gene isolated from various Anaplasma species deposited in the GeneBank, ranged between 95.8% and 98.8%. Based on the results of molecular analysis, bacterial DNA detected in the blood of 22 wild bison was identified as Anaplasma phagocytophilum. PMID:26281444

  8. A Molecular and Serological Survey of Rickettsiales Bacteria in Wild Sika Deer (Cervus nippon nippon) in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan: High Prevalence of Anaplasma Species.

    PubMed

    Wu, Dongxing; Wuritu; Yoshikawa, Yuko; Gaowa; Kawamori, Fumihiko; Ikegaya, Asaka; Ohtake, Masayoshi; Ohashi, Masataka; Shimada, Masahiko; Takada, Ayumi; Iwai, Katsuki; Ohashi, Norio

    2015-01-01

    We surveyed Rickettsiales bacteria, including Rickettsia, Ehrlichia, Anaplasma, and Neoehrlichia, in wild sika deer (Cervus nippon nippon) from Shizuoka prefecture, Japan. In spleen samples from 187 deer, Anaplasma phagocytophilum (deer type), A. bovis, and A. centrale were successfully detected by PCR assay targeting to 16S rDNA or p44/msp2, and their positive rates were 96.3% (180/187), 53.5% (100/187), and 78.1% (146/187), respectively. Additionally, 2 or 3 Anaplasma species could be detected from a single deer in 165 spleen samples (88.2%), indicating dual or triple infection. In contrast, A. phagocytophilum (human type) 16S rDNA, Rickettsia gltA, Ehrlichia p28/omp-1, and Neoehrlichia 16S rDNA could not be amplified. The serological test of 105 deer serum samples by immunofluorescence assay showed that the detection of antibodies against antigens of A. phagocytophilum HZ (US-human isolate) and Rickettsia japonica YH were 29.5% (31/105) and 75.2% (79/105), respectively. These findings suggest that A. phagocytophilum (deer type), A. centrale, and A. bovis are highly dominant and prevalent in wild sika deer from Shizuoka, a central region of Japan, and that the antibodies against some Rickettsiales bacteria have also been retained in deer blood. PMID:25971318

  9. Prevalence of Anaplasma and Bartonella spp. in Ticks Collected from Korean Water Deer (Hydropotes inermis argyropus).

    PubMed

    Kang, Jun-Gu; Ko, Sungjin; Kim, Heung-Chul; Chong, Sung-Tae; Klein, Terry A; Chae, Jeong-Byoung; Jo, Yong-Sun; Choi, Kyoung-Seong; Yu, Do-Hyeon; Park, Bae-Keun; Park, Jinho; Chae, Joon-Seok

    2016-02-01

    Deer serve as reservoirs of tick-borne pathogens that impact on medical and veterinary health worldwide. In the Republic of Korea, the population of Korean water deer (KWD, Hydropotes inermis argyropus) has greatly increased from 1982 to 2011, in part, as a result of reforestation programs established following the Korean War when much of the land was barren of trees. Eighty seven Haemaphysalis flava, 228 Haemaphysalis longicornis, 8 Ixodes nipponensis, and 40 Ixodes persulcatus (21 larvae, 114 nymphs, and 228 adults) were collected from 27 out of 70 KWD. A total of 89/363 ticks (266 pools, 24.5% minimum infection rate) and 5 (1.4%) fed ticks were positive for Anaplasma phagocytophilum using nested PCR targeting the 16S rRNA and groEL genes, respectively. The 16S rRNA gene fragment sequences of 88/89 (98.9%) of positive samples for A. phagocytophilum corresponded to previously described gene sequences from KWD spleen tissues. The 16S rRNA gene fragment sequences of 20/363 (5.5%) of the ticks were positive for A. bovis and were identical to previously reported sequences. Using the ITS specific nested PCR, 11/363 (3.0%) of the ticks were positive for Bartonella spp. This is the first report of Anaplasma and Bartonella spp. detected in ticks collected from KWD, suggesting that ticks are vectors of Anaplasma and Bartonella spp. between reservoir hosts in natural surroundings. PMID:26951985

  10. Prevalence of Anaplasma and Bartonella spp. in Ticks Collected from Korean Water Deer (Hydropotes inermis argyropus)

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Jun-Gu; Ko, Sungjin; Kim, Heung-Chul; Chong, Sung-Tae; Klein, Terry A.; Chae, Jeong-Byoung; Jo, Yong-Sun; Choi, Kyoung-Seong; Yu, Do-Hyeon; Park, Bae-Keun; Park, Jinho; Chae, Joon-Seok

    2016-01-01

    Deer serve as reservoirs of tick-borne pathogens that impact on medical and veterinary health worldwide. In the Republic of Korea, the population of Korean water deer (KWD, Hydropotes inermis argyropus) has greatly increased from 1982 to 2011, in part, as a result of reforestation programs established following the Korean War when much of the land was barren of trees. Eighty seven Haemaphysalis flava, 228 Haemaphysalis longicornis, 8 Ixodes nipponensis, and 40 Ixodes persulcatus (21 larvae, 114 nymphs, and 228 adults) were collected from 27 out of 70 KWD. A total of 89/363 ticks (266 pools, 24.5% minimum infection rate) and 5 (1.4%) fed ticks were positive for Anaplasma phagocytophilum using nested PCR targeting the 16S rRNA and groEL genes, respectively. The 16S rRNA gene fragment sequences of 88/89 (98.9%) of positive samples for A. phagocytophilum corresponded to previously described gene sequences from KWD spleen tissues. The 16S rRNA gene fragment sequences of 20/363 (5.5%) of the ticks were positive for A. bovis and were identical to previously reported sequences. Using the ITS specific nested PCR, 11/363 (3.0%) of the ticks were positive for Bartonella spp. This is the first report of Anaplasma and Bartonella spp. detected in ticks collected from KWD, suggesting that ticks are vectors of Anaplasma and Bartonella spp. between reservoir hosts in natural surroundings. PMID:26951985

  11. Detection of Babesia and Anaplasma species in rabbits from Texas and Georgia, USA.

    PubMed

    Yabsley, Michael J; Romines, Janean; Nettles, Victor F

    2006-01-01

    Rabbits have been shown to harbor a suite of zoonotic organisms, including a Babesia species, Borrelia burgdorferi, and Anaplasma phagocytophilum. In this study, we conducted a molecular survey for various tick-borne pathogens in three species of rabbits from Texas and Georgia. Of 18 black-tailed jackrabbits (Lepus californicus) tested from Texas, six (28%) were polymerase chain reaction (PCR) positive for Babesia, and nucleotide sequencing revealed two distinct species or strains. Two jackrabbits were infected with a Babesia species or strain (Babesia sp. A) that was nearly identical (99.9%) to a piroplasm previously detected in humans from Washington state, and the remaining four jackrabbits were infected with a Babesia species (Babesia sp. B) that was most similar (99.7%) to a Babesia species detected in cottontail rabbits from Massachusetts and humans from Kentucky and Missouri. Eleven (61%) black-tailed jackrabbits were positive for A. bovis, and one was positive for A. phagocytophilum. Two of four desert cottontails (Sylvilagus audubonii) from Texas were positive for the Babesia sp. B, and one desert cottontail each was positive for A. bovis and A. phagocytophilum. One of these desert cottontails was coinfected with the Babesia sp. B and A. phagocytophilum, and five jackrabbits were coinfected with Babesia species and A. bovis. Of 19 eastern cottontails (S. floridanus) from Georgia, only one (5.3%) was positive for A. phagocytophilum, and three (15.8%) were positive for A. bovis. No rabbits from Texas or Georgia were positive for Borrelia species. The only tick species detected on the Texas and Georgia rabbits was the rabbit tick, Haemaphysalis leporispalustris. These data extend the geographic and host range of these pathogens, and because both the Babesia species and A. phagocytophilum are potential zoonotic pathogens, it is important to be aware that these organisms are enzootic in parts of the southern United States. PMID:16584322

  12. Molecular detection of novel Anaplasmataceae closely related to Anaplasma platys and Ehrlichia canis in the dromedary camel (Camelus dromedarius).

    PubMed

    Bastos, Armanda D S; Mohammed, Osama B; Bennett, Nigel C; Petevinos, Charalambos; Alagaili, Abdulaziz N

    2015-09-30

    Serological surveys have confirmed Anaplasma marginale and Anaplasma phagocytophilum infections in dromedary camels, but molecular surveys and genetic characterisation of camel-associated Anaplasma species are lacking. In this study, we detected tick-borne Anaplasmataceae in 30 of 100 (30%) healthy dromedary camels screened using a combined 16S rRNA-groEL PCR-sequencing approach. Nucleotide sequencing confirmed Anaplasmataceae genome presence in 28 of the 33 16S rRNA PCR-positive samples, with two additional positive samples, for which 16S rRNA sequence data were ambiguous, being identified by groEL gene characterisation. Phylogenetic analyses of a 1289 nt segment of the 16S rRNA gene confirmed the presence of a unique Ehrlichia lineage and a discrete Anaplasma lineage, comprising three variants, occurring at an overall prevalence of 4% and 26%, respectively. Genetic characterisation of an aligned 559 nt groEL gene region revealed the camel-associated Anaplasma and Ehrlichia lineages to be novel and most closely related to Anaplasma platys and Ehrlichia canis. Based on the confirmed monophyly, minimum pairwise genetic distances between each novel lineage and its closest sister taxon, and the inability to isolate the bacteria, we propose that Candidatus status be assigned to each. This first genetic characterisation of Anaplasmataceae from naturally infected, asymptomatic dromedary camels in Saudi Arabia confirms the presence of two novel lineages that are phylogenetically linked to two pathogenic canid species of increasing zoonotic concern. PMID:26096752

  13. Migratory and carnivorous birds in Brazil: reservoirs for Anaplasma and Ehrlichia species?

    PubMed

    Machado, Rosangela Zacarias; André, Marcos Rogério; Werther, Karin; de Sousa, Eliane; Gavioli, Fernando Antônio; Alves Junior, José Roberto Ferreira

    2012-08-01

    In order to investigate new hosts for Anaplasmataceae agents in Brazil, we collected blood samples from 21 wild birds. Using molecular techniques, we detected the presence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and an Ehrlichia species closely related to Ehrlichia canis in carnivorous avian blood samples. In addition, an Ehrlichia species closely related to an Ehrlichia species found in wild felines in Brazil was also detected in a goose blood sample. Wild birds may play a role as carriers of Anaplasmataceae agents in Brazil. PMID:22607070

  14. Development of a real-time PCR assay for detection and quantification of Anaplasma ovis infection.

    PubMed

    Chi, Q; Liu, Z; Li, Y; Yang, J; Chen, Z; Yue, C; Luo, J; Yin, H

    2013-11-01

    Anaplasma ovis is a tick-borne intra-erythrocytic rickettsial pathogen of small ruminants. Real-time PCR possesses merits of rapidity, accuracy, reliability, automation and ease of standardization, but has not been used for detection of A. ovis, to the best of our knowledge. In this study, a real-time PCR assay was developed for detection and quantification of A. ovis. Species-specific primers and TaqMan probe were designed based on the gltA gene. No cross-reactions were observed with Anaplasma marginale, Anaplasma bovis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia burgdorferi s. l., Chlamydia psittaci, Mycoplasma mycoides, Theileria luwenshuni and Babesia sp. Xinjiang isolate. Analytic sensitivity results revealed that real-time PCR could detect as few as 10 copies of the gltA gene. The performance of real-time PCR was assessed by testing 254 blood samples from goats and comparing with the results from conventional PCR. This demonstrated that the real-time PCR assay was significantly more sensitive than conventional PCR. Our results indicated that real-time PCR is a useful approach for detecting A. ovis infections and has potential as an alternative tool for ecological and epidemiological surveillance of ovine anaplasmosis. PMID:24589111

  15. Neutrophils exposed to A. phagocytophilum under shear stress fail to fully activate, polarize, and transmigrate across inflamed endothelium.

    PubMed

    Schaff, U Y; Trott, K A; Chase, S; Tam, K; Johns, J L; Carlyon, J A; Genetos, D C; Walker, N J; Simon, S I; Borjesson, D L

    2010-07-01

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an obligate intracellular bacterium that has evolved mechanisms to hijack polymorphonuclear neutrophil (PMN) receptors and signaling pathways to bind, infect, and multiply within the host cell. E-selectin is upregulated during inflammation and is a requisite endothelial receptor that supports PMN capture, rolling, and activation of integrin-mediated arrest. Ligands expressed by PMN that mediate binding to endothelium via E-selectin include sialyl Lewis x (sLe(x))-expressing ligands such as P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 (PSGL-1) and other glycolipids and glycoproteins. As A. phagocytophilum is capable of binding to sLe(x)-expressing ligands expressed on PMN, we hypothesized that acute bacterial adhesion to PMN would subsequently attenuate PMN recruitment during inflammation. We assessed the dynamics of PMN recruitment and migration under shear flow in the presence of a wild-type strain of A. phagocytophilum and compared it with a strain of bacteria that binds to PMN independent of PSGL-1. Acute bacterial engagement with PMN resulted in transient PMN arrest and minimal PMN polarization. Although the wild-type pathogen also signaled activation of beta2 integrins and elicited a mild intracellular calcium flux, downstream signals including PMN transmigration and phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) were inhibited. The mutant strain bound less well to PMN and failed to activate beta2 integrins and induce a calcium flux but did result in decreased PMN arrest and polarization that may have been partially mediated by a suppression of p38 MAPK activation. This model suggests that A. phagocytophilum binding to PMN under shear flow during recruitment to inflamed endothelium interferes with normal tethering via E-selectin and navigational signaling of transendothelial migration. PMID:20392928

  16. Sequence analysis of the msp4 gene of Anaplasma ovis strains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    de la Fuente, J.; Atkinson, M.W.; Naranjo, V.; Fernandez de Mera, I. G.; Mangold, A.J.; Keating, K.A.; Kocan, K.M.

    2007-01-01

    Anaplasma ovis (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae) is a tick-borne pathogen of sheep, goats and wild ruminants. The genetic diversity of A. ovis strains has not been well characterized due to the lack of sequence information. In this study, we evaluated bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) from Montana for infection with A. ovis by serology and sequence analysis of the msp4 gene. Antibodies to Anaplasma spp. were detected in 37% and 39% of bighorn sheep and mule deer analyzed, respectively. Four new msp4 genotypes were identified. The A. ovis msp4 sequences identified herein were analyzed together with sequences reported previously for the characterization of the genetic diversity of A. ovis strains in comparison with other Anaplasma spp. The results of these studies demonstrated that although A. ovis msp4 genotypes may vary among geographic regions and between sheep and deer hosts, the variation observed was less than the variation observed between A. marginale and A. phagocytophilum strains. The results reported herein further confirm that A. ovis infection occurs in natural wild ruminant populations in Western United States and that bighorn sheep and mule deer may serve as wildlife reservoirs of A. ovis. ?? 2006.

  17. Differences in prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi and Anaplasma spp. infection among host-seeking Dermacentor occidentalis, Ixodes pacificus, and Ornithodoros coriaceus ticks in northwestern California

    PubMed Central

    Lane, Robert S.; Mun, Jeomhee; Peribáñez, Miguel A.; Fedorova, Natalia

    2010-01-01

    Previous studies revealed that the Pacific Coast tick (Dermacentor occidentalis) is infected occasionally with the agents of Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi) or human granulocytic anaplasmosis (Anaplasma phagocytophilum) and that it is an inefficient experimental vector of B. burgdorferi. The relationship of the pajahuello tick (Ornithodoros coriaceus) to each of these bacterial zoonotic agents has not been reported. The primary bridging vector of both bacterial zoonotic agents to humans is the western black-legged tick (Ixodes pacificus). Because of the spatial and temporal overlap of D. occidentalis and O. coriaceus populations with those of I. pacificus in natural foci of B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum in northwestern California, we conducted field and laboratory studies to determine if the Pacific Coast tick or the pajahuello tick potentially may serve as secondary vectors of either bacterium. Our findings reconfirmed that wild-caught D. occidentalis ticks are infected infrequently with B. burgdorferi or A. phagocytophilum, but some adult ticks from dense woodlands or chaparral were found to contain 2 important veterinary pathogens for the first time (Anaplasma bovis, A. ovis). The high prevalence of A. bovis infection (4.3%, n=185 ticks) within chaparral-derived ticks suggests that D. occidentalis could be an efficient vector of this rickettsia. Experimental attempts to transmit borreliae or Anaplasma spp. that may have been present in >100 wild-caught D. occidentalis adults to naïve rabbits were unsuccessful. Anaplasma spp. were not detected in O. coriaceus, but one (4.3%) of 23 nymphs was infected with B. bissettii. This finding and an antecedent report of a B. burgdorferi-like spirochete from the same tick species demonstrate that O. coriaceus sometimes acquires and transstadially passes Lyme disease group spirochetes. I. pacificus nymphs inhabiting a woodland nidus of B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum had a 5-fold higher prevalence of

  18. Vector-Borne Diseases in Stray Dogs in Peninsular Malaysia and Molecular Detection of Anaplasma and Ehrlichia spp. from Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Acari: Ixodidae) Ticks.

    PubMed

    Koh, Fui Xian; Panchadcharam, Chandrawathani; Tay, Sun Tee

    2016-01-01

    Little data are available on the prevalence and transmission of vector-borne diseases in stray dogs in Peninsular Malaysia. This study was designed to determine the occurrence of vector-borne pathogens in Malaysian stray dogs using serological and molecular approaches. In total, 48 dog blood samples were subjected to serological analysis using SNAP 4Dx kit (IDEXX Laboratories, Westbrook, ME). The presence of Ehrlichia and Anaplasma DNA in the dog blood samples and Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Latreille) ticks was detected using nested polymerase chain reaction assays. Positive serological findings against Ehrlichia canis and Anaplasma phagocytophilum were obtained in 17 (39.5%) and four (9.3%) of 43 dog samples, respectively. None of the dog blood samples were positive for Borrelia burgdorferi and Dirofilaria immitis. DNA of E. canis and A. phagocytophilum was detected in 12 (25.5%) and two (4.3%) of 47 dog blood samples, and 17 (51.5%) and one (3.0%) of 33 R. sanguineus ticks, respectively. Additionally, DNA of Ehrlichia spp. closely related to Ehrlichia chaffeensis was detected in two (6.1%) R. sanguineus ticks. This study highlights the prevalence of anaplasmosis and ehrlichiosis in dogs in Malaysia. Due to the zoonotic potential of Ehrlichia and Anaplasma spp., appropriate measures should be instituted for prevention and control of vector-borne diseases in dogs. PMID:26494821

  19. Molecular Detection of Zoonotic Rickettsiae and Anaplasma spp. in Domestic Dogs and Their Ectoparasites in Bushbuckridge, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Kolo, Agatha O; Sibeko-Matjila, Kgomotso P; Maina, Alice N; Richards, Allen L; Knobel, Darryn L; Matjila, Paul T

    2016-04-01

    Members of the order Rickettsiales are small, obligate intracellular bacteria that are vector-borne and can cause mild to fatal diseases in humans worldwide. There is little information on the zoonotic rickettsial pathogens that may be harbored by dogs from rural localities in South Africa. To characterize rickettsial pathogens infecting dogs, we screened 141 blood samples, 103 ticks, and 43 fleas collected from domestic dogs in Bushbuckridge Municipality, Mpumalanga Province of South Africa, between October 2011 and May 2012 using the reverse line blot (RLB) and Rickettsia genus and species-specific quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) assays. Results from RLB showed that 49% of blood samples and 30% of tick pools were positive for the genus-specific probes for Ehrlichia/Anaplasma; 16% of the blood samples were positive for Ehrlichia canis. Hemoparasite DNA could not be detected in 36% of blood samples and 30% of tick pools screened. Seven (70%) tick pools and both flea pools were positive for Rickettsia spp; three (30%) tick pools were positive for Rickettsia africae; and both flea pools (100%) were positive for Rickettsia felis. Sequencing confirmed infection with R. africae and Candidatus Rickettsia asemboensis; an R. felis-like organism from one of the R. felis-positive flea pools. Anaplasma sp. South Africa dog strain (closely related to Anaplasma phagocytophilum), A. phagocytophilum, and an Orientia tsutsugamushi-like sequence were identified from blood samples. The detection of emerging zoonotic agents from domestic dogs and their ectoparasites in a rural community in South Africa highlights the potential risk of human infection that may occur with these pathogens. PMID:26974185

  20. Intravascular persistence of Anaplasma platys, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and Ehrlichia ewingii DNA in the blood of a dog and two family members

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Anaplasmosis, caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Anaplasma platys, and ehrlichiosis, caused by Ehrlichia chaffeensis, Ehrlichia ewingii, the "Panola Mountain Ehrlichia" and Ehrlichia muris-like pathogens have been identified as emerging tick borne infectious diseases in dogs and human patients. Persistent intravascular infection with these bacteria is well documented in dogs, but is less well documented in human beings. Methods Serology and PCR targeting multiple microbial genes, followed by DNA sequencing, was used to test sequential blood samples. Tissue culture isolation was attempted in two laboratories. Results A. platys, E. chaffeensis, and E. ewingii DNA was amplified from two Anaplasma and Ehrlichia seronegative family members and their dog, all lacking typical symptoms of anaplasmosis or ehrlichiosis. Following treatment with doxycycline, the dog and mother were Anaplasma and Ehrlichia spp. PCR negative. Conclusions Sequential PCR testing provided molecular evidence supporting intravascular persistence of A. platys and Ehrlichia spp. in two humans and their dog. Diagnosticians and clinicians should consider the potential for co-infections due to these tick borne organisms. PMID:24984562

  1. Prevalence of Anaplasma, Bartonella and Borrelia Species in Haemaphysalis longicornis collected from goats in North Korea

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Jun-Gu; Ko, Sungjin; Smith, W. Barney; Kim, Heung-Chul; Lee, In-Yong

    2016-01-01

    North Korea is located on the northern part of the Korean Peninsula in East Asia. While tick-borne pathogens of medical and veterinary importance have been reported from China and South Korea, they have not been reported from North Korea. To screen for zoonotic tick-borne pathogens in North Korea, ticks were collected from domestic goats. A total of 292 (27 nymph, 26 male, 239 female) Haemaphysalis (H.) longicornis were collected and assayed individually for selected tick-borne pathogens. A total of 77 (26.4%) were positive for Anaplasma bovis, followed by Bartonella (B.) grahamii (15, 5.1%), Anaplasma phagocytophilum (12, 4.1%), Bartonella henselae (10, 3.4%), and Borrelia spp. (3, 1.0%) based on 16S ribosomal RNA and ITS species-specific nested polymerase chain reaction. Using the groEL-based nested PCR, a total of 6 and 1 H. longicornis were positive for B. grahamii and B. henselae, respectively. All products were sequenced and demonstrated 100% identity and homology with previously reported sequences from other countries in GenBank. This is the first report of the detection of tick-borne pathogens in the North Korea and suggests that farm animals may act as reservoirs for zoonotic tick-borne pathogens. PMID:26645342

  2. Prevalence of Anaplasma, Bartonella and Borrelia Species in Haemaphysalis longicornis collected from goats in North Korea.

    PubMed

    Kang, Jun-Gu; Ko, Sungjin; Smith, W Barney; Kim, Heung-Chul; Lee, In-Yong; Chae, Joon-Seok

    2016-06-30

    North Korea is located on the northern part of the Korean Peninsula in East Asia. While tick-borne pathogens of medical and veterinary importance have been reported from China and South Korea, they have not been reported from North Korea. To screen for zoonotic tick-borne pathogens in North Korea, ticks were collected from domestic goats. A total of 292 (27 nymph, 26 male, 239 female) Haemaphysalis (H.) longicornis were collected and assayed individually for selected tick-borne pathogens. A total of 77 (26.4%) were positive for Anaplasma bovis, followed by Bartonella (B.) grahamii (15, 5.1%), Anaplasma phagocytophilum (12, 4.1%), Bartonella henselae (10, 3.4%), and Borrelia spp. (3, 1.0%) based on 16S ribosomal RNA and ITS species-specific nested polymerase chain reaction. Using the groEL-based nested PCR, a total of 6 and 1 H. longicornis were positive for B. grahamii and B. henselae, respectively. All products were sequenced and demonstrated 100% identity and homology with previously reported sequences from other countries in GenBank. This is the first report of the detection of tick-borne pathogens in the North Korea and suggests that farm animals may act as reservoirs for zoonotic tick-borne pathogens. PMID:26645342

  3. Serological and molecular investigation of Ehrlichia spp. and Anaplasma spp. in ticks and blood of dogs, in the Thrace Region of Turkey.

    PubMed

    Çetinkaya, Handan; Matur, Erdal; Akyazi, İbrahim; Ekiz, Elif Ergul; Aydin, Levent; Toparlak, Mufit

    2016-07-01

    In recent years, tick-borne diseases like ehrlichiosis and anaplasmosis became widespread worldwide threatening the health of both human and companion animals. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine the presence of Anaplasma spp., and Ehrlichia spp. in dogs and ticks in the Thrace Region of Turkey. A total of 400 blood samples and 912 ticks were collected from dogs living in shelters that are located in four cities (Istanbul, Edirne, Tekirdag and Kirklareli) of the Thrace Region. Blood and buffy coat smears were prepared for microscopic examination. Hematologic and serologic analyses were performed using cell counter and commercial Snap3Dx test kit, respectively. Eight hundred fifty of collected ticks were classified as Rhipicephalus sanguineus, 33 as Rhipicephalus turanicus and 29 as Ixodes ricinus. After DNA extraction from blood samples and pooled ticks (127 tick pools, in total), nested PCR was performed to detect the DNA of Anaplasma spp., and Ehrlichia spp. The seroprevalence of Ehrlichia canis was 27.25% (109) by Snap3Dx test and the total molecular positivity was 11.75% (47) in dog blood samples and 21.25% (27) in tick pools by nested PCR. The frequencies of the infected blood samples with E. canis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Anaplasma platys were detected as 6%, 4% and 6%, respectively. E. canis and A. platys were detected in R. sanguineus pools with a ratio of 15.75% and 0.7%, respectively. In addition, A. platys was also detected in R. turanicus pools (0.7%). A. phagocytophilum was found only in I. ricinus pools (3.93%). Morulae of three species were detected in buffy coat and blood smears. While anemia was observed in dogs infected with E. canis and co-infected (with one or more species), thrombocytopenia was observed only in co-infected dogs. This is the first study providing evidence for the presence of Anaplasma spp. and Ehrlichia spp. in dogs and ticks in the Thrace Region of Turkey. Based on the results of the tests used in this study

  4. Molecular characterization and specific detection of Anaplasma species (AP-sd) in sika deer and its first detection in wild brown bears and rodents in Hokkaido, Japan.

    PubMed

    Moustafa, Mohamed Abdallah Mohamed; Lee, Kyunglee; Taylor, Kyle; Nakao, Ryo; Sashika, Mariko; Shimozuru, Michito; Tsubota, Toshio

    2015-12-01

    A previously undescribed Anaplasma species (herein referred to as AP-sd) has been detected in sika deer, cattle and ticks in Japan. Despite being highly similar to some strains of A. phagocytophilum, AP-sd has never been detected in humans. Its ambiguous epidemiology and the lack of tools for its specific detection make it difficult to understand and interpret the prevalence of this Anaplasma species. We developed a method for specific detection, and examined AP-sd prevalence in Hokkaido wildlife. Our study included 250 sika deer (Cervus nippon yesoensis), 13 brown bears (Ursus arctos yesoensis) and 252 rodents including 138 (Apodemus speciosus), 45 (Apodemus argenteus), 42 (Myodes rufocanus) and 27 (Myodes rutilus) were collected from Hokkaido island, northern Japan, collected during 2010 to 2015. A 770 bp and 382 bp segment of the 16S rRNA and gltA genes, respectively, were amplified by nested PCR. Results were confirmed by cloning and sequencing of the positive PCR products. A reverse line blot hybridization (RLB) based on the 16S rRNA gene was then developed for the specific detection of AP-sd. The prevalence of AP-sd by nested PCR in sika deer was 51% (128/250). We detected this Anaplasma sp. for the first time in wild brown bears and rodents with a prevalence of 15% (2/13) and 2.4% (6/252), respectively. The sequencing results of the 16S rRNA and gltA gene amplicons were divergent from the selected A. phagocytophilum sequences in GenBank. Using a newly designed AP-sd specific probe for RLB has enabled us to specifically detect this Anaplasma species. Besides sika deer and cattle, wild brown bears and rodents were identified as potential reservoir hosts for AP-sd. This study provided a high throughput molecular method that specifically detects AP-sd, and which can be used to investigate its ecology and its potential as a threat to humans in Japan. PMID:26431688

  5. Expression of Anaplasma marginale Ankyrin Repeat-Containing Proteins during Infection of the Mammalian Host and Tick Vector ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Ramabu, Solomon S.; Schneider, David A.; Brayton, Kelly A.; Ueti, Massaro W.; Graça, Telmo; Futse, James E.; Noh, Susan M.; Baszler, Timothy V.; Palmer, Guy H.

    2011-01-01

    Transmission of tick-borne pathogens requires transition between distinct host environments with infection and replication in host-specific cell types. Anaplasma marginale illustrates this transition: in the mammalian host, the bacterium infects and replicates in mature (nonnucleated) erythrocytes, while in the tick vector, replication occurs in nucleated epithelial cells. We hypothesized that proteins containing ankyrin motifs would be expressed by A. marginale only in tick cells and would traffic to the infected host cell nucleus. A. marginale encodes three proteins containing ankyrin motifs, an AnkA orthologue (the AM705 protein), AnkB (the AM926 protein), and AnkC (the AM638 protein). All three A. marginale Anks were confirmed to be expressed during intracellular infection: AnkA is expressed at significantly higher levels in erythrocytes, AnkB is expressed equally by both infected erythrocytes and tick cells, and AnkC is expressed exclusively in tick cells. There was no evidence of any of the Ank proteins trafficking to the nucleus. Thus, the hypothesis that ankyrin-containing motifs were predictive of cell type expression and nuclear localization was rejected. In contrast, AnkA orthologues in the closely related A. phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis have been shown to localize to the host cell nucleus. This difference, together with the lack of a nuclear localization signal in any of the AnkA orthologues, suggests that trafficking may be mediated by a separate transporter rather than by endogenous signals. Selection for divergence in Ank function among Anaplasma and Ehrlichia spp. is supported by both locus and allelic analyses of genes encoding orthologous proteins and their ankyrin motif compositions. PMID:21576345

  6. Expression of Anaplasma marginale ankyrin repeat-containing proteins during infection of the mammalian host and tick vector.

    PubMed

    Ramabu, Solomon S; Schneider, David A; Brayton, Kelly A; Ueti, Massaro W; Graça, Telmo; Futse, James E; Noh, Susan M; Baszler, Timothy V; Palmer, Guy H

    2011-07-01

    Transmission of tick-borne pathogens requires transition between distinct host environments with infection and replication in host-specific cell types. Anaplasma marginale illustrates this transition: in the mammalian host, the bacterium infects and replicates in mature (nonnucleated) erythrocytes, while in the tick vector, replication occurs in nucleated epithelial cells. We hypothesized that proteins containing ankyrin motifs would be expressed by A. marginale only in tick cells and would traffic to the infected host cell nucleus. A. marginale encodes three proteins containing ankyrin motifs, an AnkA orthologue (the AM705 protein), AnkB (the AM926 protein), and AnkC (the AM638 protein). All three A. marginale Anks were confirmed to be expressed during intracellular infection: AnkA is expressed at significantly higher levels in erythrocytes, AnkB is expressed equally by both infected erythrocytes and tick cells, and AnkC is expressed exclusively in tick cells. There was no evidence of any of the Ank proteins trafficking to the nucleus. Thus, the hypothesis that ankyrin-containing motifs were predictive of cell type expression and nuclear localization was rejected. In contrast, AnkA orthologues in the closely related A. phagocytophilum and Ehrlichia chaffeensis have been shown to localize to the host cell nucleus. This difference, together with the lack of a nuclear localization signal in any of the AnkA orthologues, suggests that trafficking may be mediated by a separate transporter rather than by endogenous signals. Selection for divergence in Ank function among Anaplasma and Ehrlichia spp. is supported by both locus and allelic analyses of genes encoding orthologous proteins and their ankyrin motif compositions. PMID:21576345

  7. Detection of Rickettsia and Anaplasma from hard ticks in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Malaisri, Premnika; Hirunkanokpun, Supanee; Baimai, Visut; Trinachartvanit, Wachareeporn; Ahantarig, Arunee

    2015-12-01

    We collected a total of 169 adult hard ticks and 120 nymphs from under the leaves of plants located along tourist nature trails in ten localities. The results present data examining the vector competence of ticks of different genera and the presence of Rickettsia and Anaplasma species. The ticks belonged to three genera, Amblyomma, Dermacentor, and Haemaphysalis, comprising 11 species. Rickettsia bacteria were detected at three collection sites, while Anaplasma bacteria were detected at only one site. Phylogenetic analysis revealed new rickettsia genotypes from Thailand that were closely related to Rickettsia tamurae, Rickettsia monacensis, and Rickettsia montana. This study was also the first to show that Anaplasma bacteria are found in Haemaphysalis shimoga ticks and are closely related evolutionarily to Anaplasma bovis. These results provide additional information for the geographical distribution of tick species and tick-borne bacteria in Thailand and can therefore be applied for ecotourism management. PMID:26611960

  8. Complete Genome Sequence of Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale is a naturally attenuated subtype that has been used as a vaccine for a century. We sequenced the genome of this organism and compared it to those of virulent senso stricto A. marginale strains. The comparison markedly narrows the number of outer membrane protein ...

  9. In vivo Endothelial Cell Infection by Anaplasma marginale

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaplasma marginale has recently been shown to infect endothelial cells in vitro but it remains unknown as to whether endothelial infection also occurs in vivo. In this report, we demonstrate through dual fluorescence microscopy that A. marginale, detected by the monoclonal antibody, ANAF16C1, co-lo...

  10. Anaplasma sp. and hemoplasma infection in leopard cats (Prionailurus bengalensis euptilurus) from Korea

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Jusun; Oh, Dae-Hyun; Lee, Hang

    2015-01-01

    This study examined the occurrence of Anaplasma spp. and hemoplasma infection in leopard cats, Prionailurus bengalensis euptilurus, in Korea. Twenty-nine biological samples were tested by molecular analysis. Two (6.9%) and eight (27.6%) tested specimens were positive for Anaplasma bovis and hemoplasma infection, respectively. Based on our results, Anaplasma/Ehrlichia spp. and hemoplasma are regularly infecting leopard cat populations of Korea. Considering their endangered status, regular monitoring of infection by arthropod-borne pathogens known to cause clinical symptoms in feline hosts such as Anaplasma/Ehrlichia spp. and hemoplasma would be crucial as part of ongoing conservation efforts. PMID:26040618

  11. Knockdown of the rhipicephalus microplus cytochrome c oxidase subunit III gene is associated with a failure of anaplasma marginale transmission

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rhipicephalus microplus is an obligate hematophagous ectoparasite of cattle and an important biological vector of Anaplasma marginale in tropical and subtropical regions. The primary determinants for Anaplasma transmission are infection of tick gut epithelial cells followed by infection of salivary ...

  12. Anaplasma marginale and Theileria annulata in questing ticks from Portugal.

    PubMed

    Antunes, S; Ferrolho, J; Domingues, N; Santos, A S; Santos-Silva, M M; Domingos, A

    2016-09-01

    Ticks are ubiquitous arthropods and vectors of several pathogenic agents in animals and humans. Monitoring questing ticks is of great importance to ascertain the occurrence of pathogens and the potential vector species, offering an insight into the risk of disease transmission in a given area. In this study 428 host-seeking ticks, belonging to nine species of Ixodidae and collected from 17 of the 23 Portuguese mainland subregions, were screened for several tick-borne agents with veterinary relevance: Anaplasma marginale, Anaplasma ovis, Anaplasma centrale, Babesia spp., Coxiella burnetii and Theileria spp. Prevalence was assessed by PCR and amplified amplicons sequenced for validation of results. Twenty ticks, in a total of 428, were found positive: one Ixodes ventalloi for Theileria annulata and four Dermacentor marginatus, one Haemaphysalis punctata, five Ixodes ricinus, five I. ventalloi, and four Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato for A. marginale. According to the reviewed literature, this is the first report of A. marginale and T. annulata detection in I. ventalloi. Furthermore, the amplification of A. marginale DNA in several tick species suggests a broad range for this agent in Portugal that might include other uncommon species as R. sanguineus s.l. This work provides new data towards a better understanding of tick-pathogen associations and also contributes to the surveillance of tick-borne agents in geographic areas with limited information. PMID:27394441

  13. Anaplasma odocoilei sp. nov. (family Anaplasmataceae) from white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus).

    PubMed

    Tate, Cynthia M; Howerth, Elizabeth W; Mead, Daniel G; Dugan, Vivien G; Luttrell, M Page; Sahora, Alexandra I; Munderloh, Ulrike G; Davidson, William R; Yabsley, Michael J

    2013-02-01

    Recently, an undescribed Anaplasma sp. (also called Ehrlichia-like sp. or WTD agent) was isolated in ISE6 tick cells from captive white-tailed deer. The goal of the current study was to characterize this organism using a combination of experimental infection, morphologic, serologic, and molecular studies. Each of 6 experimentally inoculated white-tailed deer fawns (Odocoileus virginianus) became chronically infected (100+ days) with the Anaplasma sp. by inoculation of either infected whole blood or culture. None of the deer showed evidence of clinical disease, but 3 of the 6 deer evaluated had multiple episodes of transient thrombocytopenia. Light microscopy of Giemsa-stained, thin blood smears revealed tiny, dark, spherical structures in platelets of acutely infected deer. Anaplasma sp. was detected in platelets of inoculated deer by polymerase chain reaction, transmission electron microscopy, immunohistochemistry, and in situ hybridization. Five of 6 deer developed antibodies reactive to Anaplasma sp. antigen, as detected by indirect fluorescent antibody testing. Phylogenetic analyses of 16S rRNA, groESL, and gltA sequences confirmed the Anaplasma sp. is related to A. platys. Two attempts to transmit the Anaplasma sp. between deer by feeding Amblyomma americanum, a suspected tick vector, were unsuccessful. Based on its biologic, antigenic, and genetic characteristics, this organism is considered a novel species of Anaplasma, and the name Anaplasma odocoilei sp. nov. is proposed with UMUM76(T) (=CSUR-A1) as the type strain. PMID:23276749

  14. Molecular detection of Anaplasma platys, Ehrlichia canis, Hepatozoon canis and Rickettsia monacensis in dogs from Maio Island of Cape Verde archipelago.

    PubMed

    Lauzi, Stefania; Maia, João P; Epis, Sara; Marcos, Ricardo; Pereira, Cristina; Luzzago, Camilla; Santos, Marta; Puente-Payo, Pablo; Giordano, Alessia; Pajoro, Massimo; Sironi, Giuseppe; Faustino, Augusto

    2016-07-01

    Tick-borne diseases are emerging worldwide and have an important zoonotic relevance. Dogs play an important role in the epidemiology of several zoonotic tick-borne pathogens acting as sentinels and/or reservoirs. This study focused on the molecular identification of tick-borne pathogens in blood samples of 153 autochthonous asymptomatic dogs in Maio Island, Cape Verde archipelago. Eighty-four (54.9%) dogs were positive for one or more pathogens. Fifty-five (35.9%) dogs were infected with Hepatozoon canis, 53 (34.6%) with Anaplasma platys, five (3.3%) with Ehrlichia canis and Rickettsia monacensis, an emerging human pathogen, was also identified in a single dog (0.7%). The former three pathogens cause important canine tick-borne diseases that are transmitted or potentially transmitted by Rhipicephalus sanguineus s.l., the only hard tick identified in Cape Verde. Furthermore, Wolbachia spp. was amplified from the blood of one dog. None of the dogs were positive for Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, Midichloria mitochondrii, Bartonella spp., Babesia spp. or Theileria spp. Fifty-four (35.3%) animals showed single infections and 30 (19.6%) co-infections, with A. platys and H. canis co-infection being the most frequent (28 dogs, 18.3%). The frequency of E. canis infection was statistically different among age groups (P=0.017), being higher among dogs older than 4 years compared to younger dogs. Infection by A. platys was also statistically different among age groups (P=0.031), being higher in dogs younger than 2 years compared to older dogs. The statistical analyses showed no significant association of PCR positivity with gender or location. The frequency of tick-borne pathogens detected in dogs in Maio Island, including R. monacensis, highlights the need to improve diagnosis and control in order to prevent the risk of transmission of these pathogens among dogs and humans living in or travelling to this touristic island. PMID:27177475

  15. Pathological observations on clinical Anaplasma marginale infection in cattle.

    PubMed

    Jaswal, Hitesh; Bal, M S; Singla, L D; Gupta, K; Brar, A P S

    2015-09-01

    Gross and histopathological changes were recorded in a pregnant cattle died of clinical anaplasmosis, a tick transmitted economically important disease caused by Anaplasma marginale. Grossly emaciated carcass along with pale visible mucous membranes and pale serosal surface, splenomegaly and hepatomegaly was observed. Microscopically, in lungs variable extend of interstitial pneumonia, emphysema along with infiltration of mononuclear cells was seen. Spleen showed extensive increase in red pulp area with massive proliferation of lymphocytes. In liver marked thickening of capsule with fatty changes along with retention of bile was seen. Gall bladder showed congestion, glandular hyperplasia and thickening wall. Myocardium showed degeneration and necrosis. PMID:26345059

  16. Molecular detection of Rickettsia, Anaplasma, Coxiella and Francisella bacteria in ticks collected from Artiodactyla in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Sumrandee, Chalao; Baimai, Visut; Trinachartvanit, Wachareeporn; Ahantarig, Arunee

    2016-07-01

    A total of 79 ticks collected from Sambar deer (Cervus unicolor), Barking deer (Muntiacus muntjak) and Wild boar (Sus scrofa) were examined by PCR for the presence of Rickettsia, Anaplasma, Coxiella, and Francisella bacteria. Of the 79 ticks, 13% tested positive for Rickettsia, 15% tested positive for Anaplasma, 4% tested positive for Coxiella, and 3% tested positive for Francisella. Interestingly, triple infection with Anaplasma, Rickettsia and Francisella was determined in a Dermacentor auratus tick. Moreover, another triple infection with Rickettsia, Anaplasma, and Coxiella was found in a Haemaphysalis lagrangei tick. Double infection of Rickettsia with Coxiella was also detected in another H. lagrangei tick. From the phylogenetic analyses, we found a Rickettsia sp. with a close evolutionary relationship to Rickettsia bellii in the H. lagrangei tick. We also found the first evidence of a Rickettsia sp. that is closely related to Rickettsia tamurae in Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus ticks from Thailand. H. lagrangei and Haemaphysalis obesa ticks collected from Sambar deer tested positive for Anaplasma species form the same clade with Anaplasma bovis. In contrast, other H. lagrangei ticks collected from Sambar deer and D. auratus ticks collected from Wild boar were also reported for the first time to be infected with an Anaplasma species that is closely related to Anaplasma platys. The phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA gene of Coxiella bacteria revealed that Coxiella symbionts from H. lagrangei formed a distinctly different lineage from Coxiella burnetii (a human pathogen). Additionally, Francisella bacteria identified in D. auratus ticks were found to be distantly related to a group of pathogenic Francisella species. The identification of these bacteria in several feeding ticks suggests the risk of various emerging tick-borne diseases and endosymbionts in humans, wildlife, and domestic animals in Thailand. PMID:26934997

  17. Validation of an Anaplasma marginale cELISA for use in the diagnosis of A. ovis infections in domestic sheep and Anaplasma spp. in wild ungulates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A commercially available cELISA kit for diagnosing Anaplasma marginale infection in cattle was validated for diagnosing A. ovis infection in sheep using bovine serum controls as supplied by the manufacturer (BcELISA) and sheep serum controls from hand-raised pathogen free sheep (OcELISA). ROC analy...

  18. Molecular study on infection rates of Anaplasma ovis and Anaplasma marginale in sheep and cattle in West-Azerbaijan province, Iran.

    PubMed

    Noaman, Vahid; Bastani, Davood

    2016-01-01

    This study was carried out to determine the presence and frequency of Anaplasma ovis and Anaplasma marginale in sheep and dairy cattle in West-Azerbaijan province, Iran. A total number of 200 blood samples were randomly collected via the jugular vein from apparently healthy cattle (100) and sheep (100). The extracted DNA from blood cells was screened using genus-specific (Anaplasma spp.) nested-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based on 16S rRNA gene primer sets. Species-specific PCR was set up using major surface protein 4 (MSP4) gene primer set. None of cattle blood samples were positive for Anaplasma spp. by the first nested PCR. Five samples among the 100 sheep blood samples were both positive in the first nested PCR and A. ovis -specific PCR, based on MSP4 gene. In total, 5.00% of animals were A. ovis positive. This study identified a low prevalence of A. ovis in the blood of apparently healthy sheep in West Azerbaijan province. PMID:27482362

  19. Molecular study on infection rates of Anaplasma ovis and Anaplasma marginale in sheep and cattle in West-Azerbaijan province, Iran

    PubMed Central

    Noaman, Vahid; Bastani, Davood

    2016-01-01

    This study was carried out to determine the presence and frequency of Anaplasma ovis and Anaplasma marginale in sheep and dairy cattle in West-Azerbaijan province, Iran. A total number of 200 blood samples were randomly collected via the jugular vein from apparently healthy cattle (100) and sheep (100). The extracted DNA from blood cells was screened using genus-specific (Anaplasma spp.) nested-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based on 16S rRNA gene primer sets. Species-specific PCR was set up using major surface protein 4 (MSP4) gene primer set. None of cattle blood samples were positive for Anaplasma spp. by the first nested PCR. Five samples among the 100 sheep blood samples were both positive in the first nested PCR and A. ovis -specific PCR, based on MSP4 gene. In total, 5.00% of animals were A. ovis positive. This study identified a low prevalence of A. ovis in the blood of apparently healthy sheep in West Azerbaijan province. PMID:27482362

  20. [Microbiological diagnosis of emerging bacterial pathogens: Anaplasma, Bartonella, Rickettsia, and Tropheryma whipplei].

    PubMed

    Blanco, José Ramón; Jado, Isabel; Marín, Mercedes; Sanfeliu, Isabel; Portillo, Aránzazu; Anda, Pedro; Pons, Immaculada; Oteo, José Antonio

    2008-11-01

    Ehrlichia/Anaplasma, Bartonella, Rickettsia and Tropheryma whipplei (formerly called whippelii) are fastidious bacterial organisms, considered the causative agents of potentially severe emerging and re-emerging diseases with repercussions on public health. The recent availability of advanced molecular biology and cell culture techniques has led to the implication of many of these species in human pathologies. These issues are extensively covered in number 27 of the SEIMC microbiological procedure: Diagnóstico microbiológico de las infecciones por patógenos bacterianos emergentes: Anaplasma, Bartonella, Rickettsia y Tropheryma whippelii (Microbiological diagnosis of Anaplasma, Bartonella, Rickettsia and Tropheryma whippelii infections) (2nd ed., 2007) (www.seimc.org/documentos/protocolos/microbiologia/). PMID:19100178

  1. A molecular epidemiological survey of Babesia, Hepatozoon, Ehrlichia and Anaplasma infections of dogs in Japan.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Shotaro; Tateno, Morihiro; Ichikawa, Yasuaki; Endo, Yasuyuki

    2015-10-01

    Tick-borne diseases are often encountered in canine clinical practice. In the present study, a molecular epidemiological survey of dogs in Japan was conducted to understand the prevalence and geographical distribution of Babesia spp., Hepatozoon spp., Ehrlichia spp. and Anaplasma spp. Pathogen-derived DNA in blood samples obtained from 722 dogs with a history of exposure to ticks and/or fleas was examined by PCR. The prevalence of Babesia gibsoni, Babesia odocoilei-like species, Hepatozoon canis and Ehrlichia spp./Anaplasma spp. was 2.4% (16/722), 0.1% (1/722), 2.5% (18/722) and 1.5% (11/722), respectively. While B. gibsoni and Ehrlichia spp./Anaplasma spp. were detected in the western part of Japan, H. canis was detected in Tohoku area in addition to western and central parts of Japan. PMID:25947226

  2. Experimental transmission of Anaplasma marginale by male Dermacentor reticulatus

    PubMed Central

    Zivkovic, Zorica; Nijhof, Ard M; de la Fuente, José; Kocan, Katherine M; Jongejan, Frans

    2007-01-01

    Background Bovine anaplasmosis has been reported in several European countries, but the vector competency of tick species for Anaplasma marginale from these localities has not been determined. Because of the wide distributional range of Dermacentor reticulatus within Europe and the major role of Dermacentor spp. as a vector of A. marginale in the United States, we tested the vector competency of D. reticulatus for A. marginale. Results Male D. reticulatus were allowed to feed for 7 days on a calf persistently infected with a Zaria isolate of A. marginale, after which they were removed and held off-host for 7 days. The ticks were then allowed to feed a second time for 7 days on a susceptible tick-naïve calf. Infection of calf No. 4291 was detected 20 days post exposure (p.i.) and confirmed by msp4 PCR. Thirty percent of the dissected acquisition fed ticks was infected. In addition, A. marginale colonies were detected by light microscopy in the salivary glands of the acquisition fed ticks. Transmission of A. marginale to calf No. 9191 was confirmed by examination of Giemsa-stained blood smears and msp4 PCR. Ticks were dissected after transmission feeding and presence of A. marginale was confirmed in 18.5% of the dissected ticks. Conclusion This study demonstrates that D. reticulatus males are competent vectors of A. marginale. Further studies are needed to confirm the vector competency of D. reticulatus for other A. marginale strains from geographic areas in Europe. PMID:18053123

  3. Stochastic Transmission of Multiple Genotypically Distinct Anaplasma marginale Strains in a Herd with High Prevalence of Anaplasma Infection

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, Guy H.; Knowles, Donald P.; Rodriguez, Jose-Luis; Gnad, David P.; Hollis, Larry C.; Marston, Twig; Brayton, Kelly A.

    2004-01-01

    Multiple genotypically unique strains of the tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma marginale occur and are transmitted within regions where the organism is endemic. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that specific A. marginale strains are preferentially transmitted. The study herd of cattle (n = 261) had an infection prevalence of 29% as determined by competitive inhibition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and PCR, with complete concordance between results of the two assays. Genotyping revealed the presence of 11 unique strains within the herd. Although the majority of the individuals (70 of 75) were infected with only a single A. marginale strain, five animals each carried two strains with markedly distinct genotypes, indicating that superinfection does occur with distinct A. marginale strains, as has been reported with A. marginale and A. marginale subsp. centrale strains. Identification of strains in animals born into and infected within the herd during the period from 1998 to 2003 revealed no significant difference from the overall strain prevalence in the herd, results that do not support the occurrence of preferential strain transmission within a population of persistently infected animals and are most consistent with pathogen strain transmission being stochastic. PMID:15528749

  4. Identification of Anaplasma marginale Type IV Secretion System Effector Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Brayton, Kelly A.; Beare, Paul A.; Brown, Wendy C.; Heinzen, Robert A.; Broschat, Shira L.

    2011-01-01

    Background Anaplasma marginale, an obligate intracellular alphaproteobacterium in the order Rickettsiales, is a tick-borne pathogen and the leading cause of anaplasmosis in cattle worldwide. Complete genome sequencing of A. marginale revealed that it has a type IV secretion system (T4SS). The T4SS is one of seven known types of secretion systems utilized by bacteria, with the type III and IV secretion systems particularly prevalent among pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria. The T4SS is predicted to play an important role in the invasion and pathogenesis of A. marginale by translocating effector proteins across its membrane into eukaryotic target cells. However, T4SS effector proteins have not been identified and tested in the laboratory until now. Results By combining computational methods with phylogenetic analysis and sequence identity searches, we identified a subset of potential T4SS effectors in A. marginale strain St. Maries and chose six for laboratory testing. Four (AM185, AM470, AM705 [AnkA], and AM1141) of these six proteins were translocated in a T4SS-dependent manner using Legionella pneumophila as a reporter system. Conclusions The algorithm employed to find T4SS effector proteins in A. marginale identified four such proteins that were verified by laboratory testing. L. pneumophila was shown to work as a model system for A. marginale and thus can be used as a screening tool for A. marginale effector proteins. The first T4SS effector proteins for A. marginale have been identified in this work. PMID:22140462

  5. Anaplasma marginale actively modulates vacuolar maturation during intracellular infection of its tick vector dermacentor andersoni

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Tick-borne transmission of bacterial pathogens in the Order Rickettsiales is responsible for a diversity of infectious diseases, many of them severe, in both humans and animals. Transmission dynamics differ among these pathogens and are reflected in the pathogen-vector interaction. Anaplasma margina...

  6. Selection for Simple Major Surface Protein 2 Variants during Anaplasma marginale Transmission to Immunologically Naive Animals

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaplasma marginale, a rickettsial pathogen, evades clearance in the animal host by antigenic variation. Under immune selection, A. marginale expresses complex MSP2 mosaics, derived from multiple donor sequences. However, these mosaics have a selective advantage only in the presence of adaptive immu...

  7. Anaplasma Infection in Ticks, Livestock and Human in Ghaemshahr, Mazandaran Province, Iran

    PubMed Central

    Hosseini-Vasoukolaei, Nasibeh; Oshaghi, Mohammad Ali; Shayan, Parviz; Vatandoost, Hassan; Babamahmoudi, Farhang; Yaghoobi-Ershadi, Mohammad Reza; Telmadarraiy, Zakkyeh; Mohtarami, Fatemeh

    2014-01-01

    Background: Anaplasmosis is an important issue for animal breeders in terms of economic losses as well as a health concern to human. Ticks are considered as the main vector of this disease. Lack of documented information about Anaplasma species in Iran was the scope of this study to determine the population of ticks and the presence of Anaplasma in ticks, domestic ruminants and also human beings in northern Iran. Methods: A total of 101 unengorged hard ticks, 78 domestic ruminants and 40 human blood samples collected from Ghaemshahr, Mazandaran Province, northern Iran were tested by nested PCR against 16s rRNA gene of Anaplasma species. Results: Positive PCR was found in 50 ticks, 28 sheep, 2 cattle, one goat, and 10 human specimens. Sequence analysis of the PCR products confirmed presence of A. ovis in two Rhipicephalus sanguineus and two Ixodes ricinus ticks, one human and 4 sheep samples. Moreover one Boophilus annulatus tick and one sheep sample were infected with A. bovis. Furthermore one sample of sheep was infected with A. centrale. Conclusion: This study is the first report of tick infection to A. ovis, A. bovis and human infection to A. ovis in Iran. The result of this study is a survey of Anaplasma infections from ticks, domestic animals and human in Iran which help to have appropriate prevention measures for anaplasmosis. PMID:26114134

  8. Protective immunity induced by immunization with a live, cultured anaplasma marginale strain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Despite significant economic losses resulting from infection with Anaplasma marginale, a tick-transmitted rickettsial disease of cattle, available vaccines provide, at best, only partial protection against clinical disease. The green-fluorescent protein (GFP) expressing mutant of the A. marginale St...

  9. Subdominant outer membrane antigens in anaplasma marginale: conservation, antigenicity, and protective capacity using recombinant protein

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaplasma marginale is a tick-borne rickettsial pathogen of cattle with a worldwide distribution. Currently a safe and efficacious vaccine is unavailable. Outer membrane protein (OMP) extracts or a well- defined surface protein complex reproducibly induce protective immunity. However, there are seve...

  10. Primary structural variation in anaplasma marginale Msp2 efficiently generates immune escape variants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Antigenic variation allows microbial pathogens to evade immune clearance and establish persistent infection. Anaplasma marginale utilizes gene conversion of a repertoire of silent msp2 alleles into a single active expression site to encode unique Msp2 variants. As the genomic complement of msp2 alle...

  11. Association of anaplasma marginale strain superinfection with infection prevalence within tropical regions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Strain superinfection occurs when a second strain infects a host already infected with a primary strain. The incidence of superinfection with Anaplasma marginale, a tick-borne rickettsial pathogen of domestic and wild ruminants, has been shown to be higher in tropical versus temperate regions. This ...

  12. Molecular and serological in-herd prevalence of Anaplasma marginale infection in Texas cattle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bovine anaplasmosis is an infectious, non-contagious disease caused by the rickettsial pathogen Anaplasma marginale (A. marginale). The organism has a global distribution and infects erythrocytes, resulting in anemia, jaundice, fever, abortions and death. Once infected, animals remain carriers for l...

  13. Knockout of an outer membrane protein operon of anaplasma marginale by transposon mutagenesis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Large amounts of data generated by genomics, transcriptomics and proteomics technologies have increased our understanding of the biology of Anaplasma marginale. However, these data have also led to new assumptions that require testing, ideally through classic genetic mutation. One example is the def...

  14. Conservation of Transmission Phenotype of Anaplasma marginale (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae) Strains Among Dermacentor and Rhipicephalus Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Before the eradication of Boophilus ticks from the United States, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus (Canestrini) and Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) annulatus (Say) were important biological vectors of the cattle pathogen Anaplasma marginale Theiler. In the absence of Boophilus ticks, A. marginale conti...

  15. The Indian Athlete: Exploiting or Exploited?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salter, Michael A.

    It is the purpose of this paper to examine the nineteenth century Canadian Indian lacrosse player to determine whether or not he was exploited by his European counterparts, and if so, the manner in which this exploitation occurred. Caucasian lacrosse enthusiasts sought to promote "their" game by arranging for Indian demonstrations to be staged…

  16. Comparison of the Efficiency of Biological Transmission of Anaplasma marginale (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae) by Dermacentor andersoni Stiles (Acari: Ixodidae) with Mechanical Transmission by the Horse Fly, Tabanus fuscicos

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mechanical transmission of Anaplasma marginale by horse flies (Tabanidae) is thought to be epidemiologically significant in some areas of the US. We compared the relative efficiencies of mechanical transmission of Anaplasma marginale by the horse fly, Tabanus fuscicostatus Hine during acute infectio...

  17. Survey of Ticks Collected from Tennessee Cattle and Their Pastures for Anaplasma and Ehrlichia Species.

    PubMed

    Pompo, K; Mays, S; Wesselman, C; Paulsen, D J; Fryxell, R T Trout

    2016-02-01

    Anaplasma marginale is the causative agent for bovine anaplasmosis (BA) and Ehrlichia ruminantium is the causative agent for heartwater, 2 devastating diseases of cattle. BA is common in the United States and frequently reported in western Tennessee cattle; however, cases of heartwater are not yet established in the continental United States. Because both pathogens are transmitted via the bites of infected ticks, the objective of this study was to survey cattle and pastures for ticks and for each pathogen. University of Tennessee AgResearch has 7 research and education centers (REC) located throughout the state at which they manage cattle. Ticks were collected from selected cattle (every fourth to sixth animal) and pastures (via dragging) associated with the herd from each REC during the summer of 2013. A total of 512 ticks were collected from cattle (n = 386) and pastures (n = 126) and were PCR-screened for Anaplasma and Ehrlichia using genus-specific primers. Collections consisted of 398 (77.7%) Amblyomma americanum, 84 (16.4%) Amblyomma maculatum, and 30 (5.9%) Dermacentor variabilis. Ticks were not recovered from pastures or cattle east of the Tennessee Plateau. The North American vectors for An. marginale and E. ruminantium were identified (D. variabilis and A. maculatum, respectively), but neither pathogen was recovered. A large proportion of ticks were collected from cattle and, of these, a majority were attached to their host (compared to questing on their host or engorged on the host). Four A. americanum were positive for Ehrlichia spp. (Ehrlichia ewingii, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and Panola Mountain Ehrlichia), all in western Tennessee. With the identification of a few Ehrlichia infections in cattle-associated ticks and current A. marginale rates in Tennessee beef cattle nearing 11%, additional research is needed to establish baseline tick, Anaplasma, and Ehrlichia data for future management studies. PMID:26348980

  18. Molecular identification and characterization of Anaplasma platys and Ehrlichia canis in dogs in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Almazán, Consuelo; González-Álvarez, Vicente H; Fernández de Mera, Isabel G; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Rodríguez-Martínez, Rafael; de la Fuente, José

    2016-03-01

    The tick-borne pathogens Ehrlichia canis and Anaplasma platys are the causative agents of canine monocytic ehrlichiosis (CME) and canine cyclic thrombocytopenia (CCT). Although molecular evidence of E. canis has been shown, phylogenetic analysis of this pathogen has not been performed and A. platys has not been identified in Mexico, where the tick vector Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato (s.l.) is common. The aim of this research was to screen, identify and characterize E. canis and A. platys by PCR and phylogenetic analysis in dogs from La Comarca Lagunera, a region formed by three municipalities, Torreon, Gomez-Palacio and Lerdo, in the Northern states of Coahuila and Durango, Mexico. Blood samples and five engorged R. sanguineus s.l. ticks per animal were collected from 43 females and 57 male dogs presented to veterinary clinics or lived in the dog shelter from La Comarca Lagunera. All the sampled dogs were apparently healthy and PCR for Anaplasma 16S rRNA, Ehrlichia 16S rRNA, and E. canis trp36 were performed. PCR products were sequenced and used for phylogenetic analysis. PCR products were successfully amplified in 31% of the samples using primers for Anaplasma 16S rRNA, while 10% and 4% amplified products using primers for Ehrlichia 16S rRNA and E. canis trp36 respectively. Subsequent sequencing and phylogenetic analyses of these products showed that three samples corresponded to A. platys and four to E. canis. Based on the analysis of trp36 we confirmed that the E. canis strains isolated from Mexico belong to a conservative clade of E. canis and are closely related to strains from USA. In conclusion, this is the first molecular identification of A. platys and the first molecular characterization and phylogenetic study of both A. platys and E. canis in dogs in Mexico. PMID:26615872

  19. Molecular Evidence of Anaplasma platys Infection in Two Women from Venezuela

    PubMed Central

    Arraga-Alvarado, Cruz M.; Qurollo, Barbara A.; Parra, Omaira C.; Berrueta, Maribel A.; Hegarty, Barbara C.; Breitschwerdt, Edward B.

    2014-01-01

    This article presents two case reports of Anaplasma platys detection in two women from Venezuela. Both patients were exposed to Rhipicephalus sanguineus, the presumed tick vector, and experienced chronic, nonspecific clinical signs including headaches and muscle pains. Intra-platelet inclusion bodies resembling A. platys were observed in buffy coat smears and A. platys DNA was amplified and sequenced from whole blood; however, treatment with doxycycline did not alleviate their symptoms. These cases provide further support for A. platys as a zoonotic tick-borne pathogen, most likely of low pathogenicity; nonetheless, the cause of illness in humans by A. platys is yet to be confirmed. PMID:25266347

  20. Identification of Midgut and Salivary Glands as Specific and Distinct Barriers to Efficient Tick-Borne Transmission of Anaplasma marginale

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding the determinants of efficient tick-borne microbial transmission is needed to better predict the emergence of highly transmissible pathogen strains and disease outbreaks. Although the basic developmental cycle of Anaplasma and Ehrlichia spp. within the tick has been delineated, there a...

  1. Tick-Borne Transmission of Two Genetically Distinct Anaplasma marginale Strains following Superinfection of the Mammalian Reservoir Host

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Strain superinfection affects the dynamics of epidemiological spread of pathogens through a host population. Superinfection has recently been shown to occur for genetically distinct strains of the tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma marginale that encode distinctly different surface protein variants. Supe...

  2. Quantitative Differences in Salivary Pathogen Load during Tick Transmission Underlie Strain-Specific Variation in Transmission Efficiency of Anaplasma marginale

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The relative fitness of arthropod-borne pathogens within the vector can be a major determinant of pathogen prevalence within the mammalian host population. Strains of the tick-borne rickettsia Anaplasma marginale differ markedly in transmission efficiency with consequent impact on pathogen strain st...

  3. Stability and tick transmission phenotype of gfp-transformed Anaplasma marginale through a complete in vivo infection cycle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We tested the stability of transformed Anaplasma marginale during a complete in vivo infection cycle. Similar to wild-type, the transformed A. marginale established infection in cattle, a natural reservoir host, and persisted in immune competent animals. The tick infection rate was indistinguishab...

  4. Expression of Anaplasma marginale ankyrin repeat-containing proteins during infection of the mammalian host and tick vector

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Using searches of the NCBI conserved domain database and SMART genomic architecture analysis, we identified three ankyrin repeat-containing genes in Anaplasma marginale: AM705, AM926 and AM638. Recombinant protein was used to immunize mice and generate fusion hybridomas secreting protein-specific mo...

  5. First description of natural Ehrlichia canis and Anaplasma platys infections in dogs from Argentina.

    PubMed

    Eiras, Diego Fernando; Craviotto, María Belén; Vezzani, Darío; Eyal, Osnat; Baneth, Gad

    2013-03-01

    Bacteria belonging to the Anaplasmataceae family are vector transmitted agents that affect a variety of vertebrate hosts including the tick-borne pathogens Ehrlichia canis and Anaplasma platys, which cause canine monocytic ehrlichiosis and cyclic thrombocytopenia, respectively. These two infections, typically reported from tropical and sub-tropical regions, have not been previously reported in dogs from Argentina. A total of 86 blood samples from dogs with suspected rickettsial disease and 28 non-suspected dogs were studied. Analysis included evaluation of hematological findings, PCR for Ehrlichia and Anaplasma species and sequencing of the positive PCR products. E. canis was detected in the blood of six dogs and A. platys in eighteen. All the dogs categorized as non-suspected were negative by PCR. Co-infection with Hepatozoon canis and Babesia vogeli was documented. This first report of E. canis and A. platys infections in dogs from Argentina indicates that these tick-borne infections have a considerably broader range than previously recognized in South America. PMID:23273677

  6. Propagation of the Israeli vaccine strain of Anaplasma centrale in tick cell lines.

    PubMed

    Bell-Sakyi, Lesley; Palomar, Ana M; Bradford, Emma L; Shkap, Varda

    2015-09-30

    Anaplasma centrale has been used in cattle as a live blood vaccine against the more pathogenic Anaplasma marginale for over 100 years. While A. marginale can be propagated in vitro in tick cell lines, facilitating studies on antigen production, immunisation and vector-pathogen interaction, to date there has been no in vitro culture system for A. centrale. In the present study, 25 cell lines derived from 13 ixodid tick species were inoculated with the Israeli vaccine strain of A. centrale and monitored for at least 12 weeks by microscopic examination of Giemsa-stained cytocentrifuge smears. Infection of 19 tick cell lines was subsequently attempted by transfer of cell-free supernate from vaccine-inoculated tick cells. In two separate experiments, rickettsial inclusions were detected in cultures of the Rhipicephalus appendiculatus cell line RAE25 28-32 days following inoculation with the vaccine. Presence of A. centrale in the RAE25 cells was confirmed by PCR assays targeting the 16S rRNA, groEL and msp4 genes; sequenced PCR products were 100% identical to published sequences of the respective genes in the Israeli vaccine strain of A. centrale. A. centrale was taken through three subcultures in RAE25 cells over a 30 week period. In a single experiment, the Dermacentor variabilis cell line DVE1 was also detectably infected with A. centrale 11 weeks after inoculation with the vaccine. Availability of an in vitro culture system for A. centrale in tick cells opens up the possibility of generating a safer and more ethical vaccine for bovine anaplasmosis. PMID:26210950

  7. Co-infection with Anaplasma platys, Bartonella henselae and Candidatus Mycoplasma haematoparvum in a veterinarian

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background During a two year period, a 27-year-old female veterinarian experienced migraine headaches, seizures, including status epilepticus, and other neurological and neurocognitive abnormalities. Prior to and during her illness, she had been actively involved in hospital-based work treating domestic animals, primarily cats and dogs, in Grenada and Ireland and anatomical research requiring the dissection of wild animals (including lions, giraffe, rabbits, mongoose, and other animals), mostly in South Africa. The woman reported contact with fleas, ticks, lice, biting flies, mosquitoes, spiders and mites and had also been scratched or bitten by dogs, cats, birds, horses, reptiles, rabbits and rodents. Prior diagnostic testing resulted in findings that were inconclusive or within normal reference ranges and no etiological diagnosis had been obtained to explain the patient’s symptoms. Methods PCR assays targeting Anaplasma spp. Bartonella spp. and hemotopic Mycoplasma spp. were used to test patient blood samples. PCR positive amplicons were sequenced directly and compared to GenBank sequences. In addition, Bartonella alpha Proteobacteria growth medium (BAPGM) enrichment blood culture was used to facilitate bacterial growth and Bartonella spp. serology was performed by indirect fluorescent antibody testing. Results Anaplasma platys, Bartonella henselae and Candidatus Mycoplasma haematoparvum DNA was amplified and sequenced from the woman’s blood, serum or blood culture samples. Her serum was variably seroreactive to several Bartonella sp. antigens. Despite symptomatic improvement, six months of doxycycline most likely failed to eliminate the B. henselae infection, whereas A. platys and Candidatus M. haematoparvum DNA was no longer amplified from post-treatment samples. Conclusions As is typical of many veterinary professionals, this individual had frequent exposure to arthropod vectors and near daily contact with persistently bacteremic reservoir hosts, including

  8. Propagation of the Israeli vaccine strain of Anaplasma centrale in tick cell lines

    PubMed Central

    Bell-Sakyi, Lesley; Palomar, Ana M.; Bradford, Emma L.; Shkap, Varda

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma centrale has been used in cattle as a live blood vaccine against the more pathogenic Anaplasma marginale for over 100 years. While A. marginale can be propagated in vitro in tick cell lines, facilitating studies on antigen production, immunisation and vector-pathogen interaction, to date there has been no in vitro culture system for A. centrale. In the present study, 25 cell lines derived from 13 ixodid tick species were inoculated with the Israeli vaccine strain of A. centrale and monitored for at least 12 weeks by microscopic examination of Giemsa-stained cytocentrifuge smears. Infection of 19 tick cell lines was subsequently attempted by transfer of cell-free supernate from vaccine-inoculated tick cells. In two separate experiments, rickettsial inclusions were detected in cultures of the Rhipicephalus appendiculatus cell line RAE25 28–32 days following inoculation with the vaccine. Presence of A. centrale in the RAE25 cells was confirmed by PCR assays targeting the 16S rRNA, groEL and msp4 genes; sequenced PCR products were 100% identical to published sequences of the respective genes in the Israeli vaccine strain of A. centrale. A. centrale was taken through three subcultures in RAE25 cells over a 30 week period. In a single experiment, the Dermacentor variabilis cell line DVE1 was also detectably infected with A. centrale 11 weeks after inoculation with the vaccine. Availability of an in vitro culture system for A. centrale in tick cells opens up the possibility of generating a safer and more ethical vaccine for bovine anaplasmosis. PMID:26210950

  9. [Child sexual exploitation].

    PubMed

    Cabello, María F; Castaldi, Paula D; Cataldo, Andrea M

    2009-01-01

    Child Sexual Exploitation is a complex phenomenon in our country and the world; it dates back to an ancient past but it has a very recent conceptualization and specific approach. This article proposes a tour through this process as well as some inputs for its categorization, the attention to the affected subjects by the very design of public policies taken from a concrete institutional experience. PMID:19812796

  10. Evaluation of oxidant/antioxidant status, trace mineral levels, and erythrocyte osmotic fragility in goats naturally infected with Anaplasma ovis.

    PubMed

    Jalali, Seyedeh Missagh; Bahrami, Somayeh; Rasooli, Aria; Hasanvand, Saman

    2016-08-01

    Anaplasma ovis, an arthropod-borne pathogen that infects erythrocytes, is the major cause of ovine and caprine anaplasmosis. This study was performed to assess in goats infected with A. ovis the osmotic fragility of erythrocytes, antioxidant status, and serum levels of microminerals. Blood samples were collected from 104 mixed breed goats in Ahvaz area, southwest Iran and subjected to parasitologic, hematologic, oxidant/antioxidant, and micromineral assessment. Anaplasma infection was detected in 30 samples (28.8 %) by microscopic examination of blood smears while PCR-RFLP analysis revealed infection with A. ovis in 68 samples (65.4 %). Studied animals were divided into three groups based on A. ovis infection: Uninfected goats as control group (group 1), PCR positive without parasitemia (group 2) and PCR positive with parasitemia (group 3). Hematological evaluation showed significantly increased lymphocyte and monocyte counts in Anaplasma-infected groups (group 2 and 3). A significantly lower MCHC and higher MCV were also observed in infected groups. In group 3 significant rises in erythrocyte's osmotic fragility in different salt concentrations and also in median corpuscular fragility (MCF) was seen. Evaluation of the antioxidant defense system of the erythrocytes revealed a decrease in total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity in group 3. There was no significant difference in serum micromineral levels between infected and uninfected animals. Overall, the observed substantial decrease in the antioxidant enzyme activities with remarkable elevated levels of erythrocyte osmotic fragility indicate high exposure of erythrocytes to oxidative damage in Anaplasma-infected goats. These results also suggest that the disturbed antioxidant defense mechanisms in caprine anaplasmosis can promote the development of anemia. PMID:27142027

  11. Multisensor staring exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bryant, Michael L.

    2008-04-01

    The focus of this paper is on the exploitation of new staring sensors to address the urban surveillance challenge and help combat the war on terror. A staring sensor visualization environment, known as the Data Table, will be presented which integrates staring sensors with close-in sensors, such as small UAVs, building mounted sensors, and unattended ground sensors (UGS). There are several staring sensors in development, but two in particular will be highlighted in this paper - NightStare and the Gotcha Radar, both under development by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL).

  12. Moving target exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Bruce L.; Grayson, Timothy P.

    1998-08-01

    The understanding of maneuvering forces is invaluable to the warfighter, as it enhances understanding of enemy force structure and disposition, provides cues to potential enemy actions, and expedites targeting of time critical targets. Airborne ground moving target indicator (GMTI) radars are a class of highly-effective, all-weather, wide-area senors that aid in the surveillance of these moving ground vehicles. Unfortunately conventional GMTI radars are incapable of identifying individual vehicles, and techniques for exploiting information imbedded within GMTI radar reports are limited. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Moving Target Exploitation (MTE) program is working to mitigate these deficiencies by developing, integrating, and evaluating a suite of automated and semi-automated technologies to classify moving targets and units, and to provide indications of their activities. These techniques include: aid in the interpretation of GMTI data to provide moving force structure analysis, automatic tracking of thousands of moving ground vehicles, 1-D target classification based upon high-range- resolution (HRR) radar profiles, and 2-D target classification based upon moving target imaging (MTIm) synthetic aperture radar (SAR). This paper shall present the MTE concept and motivation and provide an overview of results to date.

  13. Multilevel fusion exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindberg, Perry C.; Dasarathy, Belur V.; McCullough, Claire L.

    1996-06-01

    This paper describes a project that was sponsored by the U.S. Army Space and Strategic Defense Command (USASSDC) to develop, test, and demonstrate sensor fusion algorithms for target recognition. The purpose of the project was to exploit the use of sensor fusion at all levels (signal, feature, and decision levels) and all combinations to improve target recognition capability against tactical ballistic missile (TBM) targets. These algorithms were trained with simulated radar signatures to accurately recognize selected TBM targets. The simulated signatures represent measurements made by two radars (S-band and X- band) with the targets at a variety of aspect and roll angles. Two tests were conducted: one with simulated signatures collected at angles different from those in the training database and one using actual test data. The test results demonstrate a high degree of recognition accuracy. This paper describes the training and testing techniques used; shows the fusion strategy employed; and illustrates the advantages of exploiting multi-level fusion.

  14. Improved diagnostic performance of a commercial anaplasma antibody competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay using recombinant major surface protein 5–glutathione S-transferase fusion protein as antigen

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This study tested the hypothesis that removal of maltose binding protein from recombinant antigen used for plate coating would improve the specificity of Anaplasma antibody competitive ELISA. Three hundred and eight sera with significant MBP antibody binding (=30%I) in Anaplasma negative herds was 1...

  15. Biotechnological exploitation of microalgae.

    PubMed

    Gangl, Doris; Zedler, Julie A Z; Rajakumar, Priscilla D; Martinez, Erick M Ramos; Riseley, Anthony; Włodarczyk, Artur; Purton, Saul; Sakuragi, Yumiko; Howe, Christopher J; Jensen, Poul Erik; Robinson, Colin

    2015-12-01

    Microalgae are a diverse group of single-cell photosynthetic organisms that include cyanobacteria and a wide range of eukaryotic algae. A number of microalgae contain high-value compounds such as oils, colorants, and polysaccharides, which are used by the food additive, oil, and cosmetic industries, among others. They offer the potential for rapid growth under photoautotrophic conditions, and they can grow in a wide range of habitats. More recently, the development of genetic tools means that a number of species can be transformed and hence used as cell factories for the production of high-value chemicals or recombinant proteins. In this article, we review exploitation use of microalgae with a special emphasis on genetic engineering approaches to develop cell factories, and the use of synthetic ecology approaches to maximize productivity. We discuss the success stories in these areas, the hurdles that need to be overcome, and the potential for expanding the industry in general. PMID:26400987

  16. Exploiting Endocytosis for Nanomedicines

    PubMed Central

    Akinc, Akin; Battaglia, Giuseppe

    2013-01-01

    In this article, we briefly review the endocytic pathways used by cells, pointing out their defining characteristics and highlighting physical limitations that may direct the internalization of nanoparticles to a subset of these pathways. A more detailed description of these pathways is presented in the literature. We then focus on the endocytosis of nanomedicines and present how various nanomaterial parameters impact these endocytic processes. This topic is an area of active research, motivated by the recognition that an improved understanding of how nanomaterials interact at the molecular, cellular, and whole-organism level will lead to the design of better nanomedicines in the future. Next, we briefly review some of the important nanomedicines already on the market or in clinical development that serve to exemplify how endocytosis can be exploited for medical benefit. Finally, we present some key unanswered questions and remaining challenges to be addressed by the field. PMID:24186069

  17. The Geohazards Exploitation Platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laur, Henri; Casu, Francesco; Bally, Philippe; Caumont, Hervé; Pinto, Salvatore

    2016-04-01

    The Geohazards Exploitation Platform, or Geohazards TEP (GEP), is an ESA originated R&D activity of the EO ground segment to demonstrate the benefit of new technologies for large scale processing of EO data. This encompasses on-demand processing for specific user needs, systematic processing to address common information needs of the geohazards community, and integration of newly developed processors for scientists and other expert users. The platform supports the geohazards community's objectives as defined in the context of the International Forum on Satellite EO and Geohazards organised by ESA and GEO in Santorini in 2012. The GEP is a follow on to the Supersites Exploitation Platform (SSEP) an ESA initiative to support the Geohazards Supersites & Natural Laboratories initiative (GSNL). Today the GEP allows to exploit 70+ Terabyte of ERS and ENVISAT archive and the Copernicus Sentinel-1 data available on line. The platform has already engaged 22 European early adopters in a validation activity initiated in March 2015. Since September, this validation has reached 29 single user projects. Each project is concerned with either integrating an application, running on demand processing or systematically generating a product collection using an application available in the platform. The users primarily include 15 geoscience centres and universities based in Europe: British Geological Survey (UK), University of Leeds (UK), University College London (UK), ETH University of Zurich (CH), INGV (IT), CNR-IREA and CNR-IRPI (IT), University of L'Aquila (IT), NOA (GR), Univ. Blaise Pascal & CNRS (FR), Ecole Normale Supérieure (FR), ISTERRE / University of Grenoble-Alpes (FR). In addition, there are users from Africa and North America with the University of Rabat (MA) and the University of Miami (US). Furthermore two space agencies and four private companies are involved: the German Space Research Centre DLR (DE), the European Space Agency (ESA), Altamira Information (ES

  18. Image exploitation for MISAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heinze, N.; Edrich, M.; Saur, G.; Krüger, W.

    2007-04-01

    The miniature SAR-system MiSAR has been developed by EADS Germany for lightweight UAVs like the LUNASystem. MiSAR adds to these tactical UAV-systems the all-weather reconnaissance capability, which is missing until now. Unlike other SAR sensors, that produce large strip maps at update rates of several seconds, MiSAR generates sequences of SAR images with approximately 1 Hz frame rate. photo interpreters (PI) of tactical drones, now mainly experienced with visual interpretation, are not used to SARimages, especially not with SAR-image sequence characteristics. So they should be supported to improve their ability to carry out their task with a new, demanding sensor system. We have therefore analyzed and discussed with military PIs in which task MiSAR can be used and how the PIs can be supported by special algorithms. We developed image processing- and exploitation-algorithms for such SAR-image sequences. A main component is the generation of image sequence mosaics to get more oversight. This mosaicing has the advantage that also non straight /linear flight-paths and varying squint angles can be processed. Another component is a screening-component for manmade objects to mark regions of interest in the image sequences. We use a classification based approach, which can be easily adapted to new sensors and scenes. These algorithms are integrated into an image exploitation system to improve the image interpreters ability to get a better oversight, better orientation and helping them to detect relevant objects, especially considering long endurance reconnaissance missions.

  19. Battlespace exploitation vision

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilmore, John F.; Johnson, Ray O.

    1997-06-01

    The quantity and quality of data collected by military and commercial electro-optic and radar sensors is rapidly increasing. This increase in imagery data has not been accompanied by an increase in the number of image analysts needed to rapidly screen the imagery to locate and identify military targets or other objects of interest. Automatic target recognition (ATR) technology that automates the target detection, classification, and identification process has been a promising technology for at least two decades, and recent advances make the realization of aided target recognition possible. The future military battlespace will be filled with airborne, spaceborne, and land-based sensors observing moving and stationary targets at various locations, from multiple aspects, and at multiple frequencies and wavelengths. Only through the use of computer-assisted data analysis and ATR can the vast amount of data be analyzed within the timelines required by the military. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has a number of programs developing technology to support the exploitation and control of the future battlespace information.

  20. Detection of Ehrlichia spp., Anaplasma spp., Rickettsia spp., and Other Eubacteria in Ticks from the Thai-Myanmar Border and Vietnam

    PubMed Central

    Parola, Philippe; Cornet, Jean-Paul; Sanogo, Yibayiri Osée; Miller, R. Scott; Thien, Huynh Van; Gonzalez, Jean-Paul; Raoult, Didier; Telford III, Sam R.; Wongsrichanalai, Chansuda

    2003-01-01

    A total of 650 ticks, including 13 species from five genera, were collected from animals, from people, or by flagging of the vegetation at sites on the Thai-Myanmar border and in Vietnam. They were tested by PCR to detect DNA of bacteria of the order Rickettsiales. Three Anaplasma spp. were detected in ticks collected in Thailand, including (i) Anaplasma sp. strain AnDa465, which was considered a genotype of Anaplasma platys (formerly Ehrlichia platys) and which was obtained from Dermacentor auratus ticks collected from dogs; (ii) Anaplasma sp. strain AnAj360, which was obtained from Amblyomma javanense ticks collected on a pangolin; and (iii) Anaplasma sp. strain AnHl446, which was closely related to Anaplasma bovis and which was detected in Haemaphysalis lagrangei ticks collected from a bear. Three Ehrlichia spp. were identified, including (i) Ehrlichia sp. strain EBm52, which was obtained from Boophilus microplus ticks collected from cattle from Thailand; (ii) Ehrlichia sp. strain EHh324, which was closely related to Ehrlichia chaffeensis and which was detected in Haemaphysalis hystricis ticks collected from wild pigs in Vietnam; and (iii) Ehrlichia sp. strain EHh317, which was closely related to Ehrlichia sp. strain EBm52 and which was also detected in H. hystricis ticks collected from wild pigs in Vietnam. Two Rickettsia spp. were detected in Thailand, including (i) Rickettsia sp. strain RDla420, which was detected in Dermacentor auratus ticks collected from a bear, and (ii) Rickettsia sp. strain RDla440, which was identified from two pools of Dermacentor larvae collected from a wild pig nest. Finally, two bacteria named Eubacterium sp. strain Hw124 and Eubacterium sp. strain Hw191 were identified in Haemaphysalis wellingtoni ticks collected from chicken in Thailand; these strains could belong to a new group of bacteria. PMID:12682151

  1. Detection of Ehrlichia spp., Anaplasma spp., Rickettsia spp., and other eubacteria in ticks from the Thai-Myanmar border and Vietnam.

    PubMed

    Parola, Philippe; Cornet, Jean-Paul; Sanogo, Yibayiri Osée; Miller, R Scott; Thien, Huynh Van; Gonzalez, Jean-Paul; Raoult, Didier; Telford III, Sam R; Wongsrichanalai, Chansuda

    2003-04-01

    A total of 650 ticks, including 13 species from five genera, were collected from animals, from people, or by flagging of the vegetation at sites on the Thai-Myanmar border and in Vietnam. They were tested by PCR to detect DNA of bacteria of the order RICKETTSIALES: Three Anaplasma spp. were detected in ticks collected in Thailand, including (i) Anaplasma sp. strain AnDa465, which was considered a genotype of Anaplasma platys (formerly Ehrlichia platys) and which was obtained from Dermacentor auratus ticks collected from dogs; (ii) Anaplasma sp. strain AnAj360, which was obtained from Amblyomma javanense ticks collected on a pangolin; and (iii) Anaplasma sp. strain AnHl446, which was closely related to Anaplasma bovis and which was detected in Haemaphysalis lagrangei ticks collected from a bear. Three Ehrlichia spp. were identified, including (i) Ehrlichia sp. strain EBm52, which was obtained from Boophilus microplus ticks collected from cattle from Thailand; (ii) Ehrlichia sp. strain EHh324, which was closely related to Ehrlichia chaffeensis and which was detected in Haemaphysalis hystricis ticks collected from wild pigs in Vietnam; and (iii) Ehrlichia sp. strain EHh317, which was closely related to Ehrlichia sp. strain EBm52 and which was also detected in H. hystricis ticks collected from wild pigs in Vietnam. Two Rickettsia spp. were detected in Thailand, including (i) Rickettsia sp. strain RDla420, which was detected in Dermacentor auratus ticks collected from a bear, and (ii) Rickettsia sp. strain RDla440, which was identified from two pools of Dermacentor larvae collected from a wild pig nest. Finally, two bacteria named Eubacterium sp. strain Hw124 and Eubacterium sp. strain Hw191 were identified in Haemaphysalis wellingtoni ticks collected from chicken in Thailand; these strains could belong to a new group of bacteria. PMID:12682151

  2. Detection and phylogenetic characterization of Theileria spp. and Anaplasma marginale in Rhipicephalus bursa in Portugal.

    PubMed

    Ferrolho, Joana; Antunes, Sandra; Santos, Ana S; Velez, Rita; Padre, Ludovina; Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Santos-Silva, Maria Margarida; Domingos, Ana

    2016-04-01

    Ticks are obligatory blood-sucking arthropod (Acari:Ixodida) ectoparasites of domestic and wild animals as well as humans. The incidence of tick-borne diseases is rising worldwide, challenging our approach toward diagnosis, treatment and control options. Rhipicephalus bursa Canestrini and Fanzago, 1877, a two-host tick widely distributed in the Palearctic Mediterranean region, is considered a multi-host tick that can be commonly found on sheep, goats and cattle, and occasionally on horses, dogs, deer and humans. R. bursa is a species involved in the transmission of several tick-borne pathogens with a known impact on animal health and production. The aim of this study was to estimate R. bursa prevalence in Portugal Mainland and circulating pathogens in order to contribute to a better knowledge of the impact of this tick species. Anaplasma marginale and Theileria spp. were detected and classified using phylogenetic analysis. This is the first report of Theileria annulata and Theileria equi detection in R. bursa ticks feeding on cattle and horses, respectively, in Portugal. This study contributes toward the identification of currently circulating pathogens in this tick species as a prerequisite for developing future effective anti-tick control measures. PMID:26797395

  3. Identification of Rhipicephalus microplus Genes That Modulate the Infection Rate of the Rickettsia Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    Mercado-Curiel, Ricardo F.; Ávila-Ramírez, María L.; Palmer, Guy H.; Brayton, Kelly A.

    2014-01-01

    Arthropod vectors transmit a diversity of animal and human pathogens, ranging from RNA viruses to protozoal parasites. Chemotherapeutic control of pathogens has classically focused either on insecticides that kill the vector itself or antimicrobials for infected patients. The limitation of the former is that it targets both infected and uninfected vectors and selects for resistant populations while the latter requires prompt and accurate diagnosis. An alternative strategy is to target vector molecules that permit the pathogen to establish itself, replicate, and/or develop within the vector. Using the rickettsial pathogen Anaplasma marginale and its tropical tick vector, Rhipicephalus microplus, as a model, we tested whether silencing specific gene targets would affect tick infection rates (the % of fed ticks that are infected with the pathogen) and pathogen levels within infected ticks. Silencing of three R. microplus genes, CK187220, CV437619 and TC18492, significantly decreased the A. marginale infection rate in salivary glands, whereas gene silencing of TC22382, TC17129 and TC16059 significantly increased the infection rate in salivary glands. However in all cases of significant difference in the infection rate, the pathogen levels in the ticks that did become infected, were not significantly different. These results are consistent with the targeted genes affecting the pathogen at early steps in infection of the vector rather than in replication efficiency. Identifying vector genes and subsequent determination of the encoded functions are initial steps in discovery of new targets for inhibiting pathogen development and subsequent transmission. PMID:24608654

  4. Introduction to the alpha-proteobacteria: Wolbachia and Bartonella, Rickettsia, Brucella, Ehrlichia, and Anaplasma.

    PubMed

    Bowman, Dwight D

    2011-11-01

    Wolbachia is an obligate intracellular endosymbiont and likely mutualist living within the heartworm Dirofilaria immitis and a number of other filarial nematodes in the family Onchocercidae. The bacterial infection is passed from worm to worm transovarially; the organisms are in ovarian cells, the developing microfilariae, and multiply and persist in all later developmental stages through the mosquito and into the next host. Besides being present in the ovaries of the adult worms, they also are present in large numbers within the hypodermal tissues of the nematode. It is now know that these bacteria that were first observed in heartworms more than 30 years ago are actually related to similar Wolbachia bacteria that are found in arthropods. Wolbachia is an alpha-proteobacteria, and this group includes a number of important arthropod-transmitted bacterial agents of dogs and cats: Rickettsia rickettsii, R. felis, Anaplasma platys, Ehrlichia canis, E. chaffeensis, and E. ewingii. Alpha-proteobacteria are also important as obligate intracellular mutualists in plants in which they are responsible for nitrogen fixation. Recent work on the treatment of heartworms in dogs with doxycycline stems from related work with the human filarial nematode Onchocerca volvulus that causes river blindness in people. PMID:22152604

  5. Reduced Infectivity in Cattle for an Outer Membrane Protein Mutant of Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    Brayton, Kelly A.; Magunda, Forgivemore; Munderloh, Ulrike G.; Kelley, Karen L.; Barbet, Anthony F.

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma marginale is the causative agent of anaplasmosis in cattle. Transposon mutagenesis of this pathogen using the Himar1 system resulted in the isolation of an omp10 operon insertional mutant referred to as the omp10::himar1 mutant. The work presented here evaluated if this mutant had morphological and/or growth rate defects compared to wild-type A. marginale. Results showed that the morphology, developmental cycle, and growth in tick and mammalian cell cultures are similar for the mutant and the wild type. Tick transmission experiments established that tick infection levels with the mutant were similar to those with wild-type A. marginale and that infected ticks successfully infected cattle. However, this mutant exhibited reduced infectivity and growth in cattle. The possibility of transforming A. marginale by transposon mutagenesis coupled with in vitro and in vivo assessment of altered phenotypes can aid in the identification of genes associated with virulence. The isolation of deliberately attenuated organisms that can be evaluated in their natural biological system is an important advance for the rational design of vaccines against this species. PMID:25595772

  6. Protective immunity induced by immunization with a live, cultured Anaplasma marginale strain

    PubMed Central

    Hammac, G. Kenitra; Ku, Pei-Shin; Galletti, Maria F.; Noh, Susan M.; Scoles, Glen A.; Palmer, Guy H.; Brayton, Kelly A.

    2014-01-01

    Despite significant economic losses resulting from infection with Anaplasma marginale, a tick-transmitted rickettsial pathogen of cattle, available vaccines provide, at best, only partial protection against clinical disease. The green-fluorescent protein expressing mutant of the A. marginale St. Maries strain is a live, marked vaccine candidate (AmStM-GFP1). To test whether AmStM-GFP is safe and provides clinical protection, a group of calves was vaccinated, and clinical parameters, including percent parasitized erythrocytes (PPE), packed cell volume (PCV) and days required to reach peak bacteremia, were measured following inoculation and following tick challenge with wild type St Maries strain (AmStM). These clinical parameters were compared to those obtained during infection with the A. marginale subsp. centrale vaccine strain (A. centrale) or wild type AmStM. AmStM-GFP resulted in similar clinical parameters to A. centrale, but had a lower maximum PPE, smaller drop in PCV and took longer to reach peak bacteremia than wild type AmStM. AmStM-GFP provided clinical protection, yielding a stable PCV and low bacteremia following challenge, whereas A. centrale only afforded partial clinical protection. PMID:23664994

  7. First molecular survey of Anaplasma bovis in small ruminants from Tunisia.

    PubMed

    Ben Said, Mourad; Belkahia, Hanène; Karaoud, Maroua; Bousrih, Maha; Yahiaoui, Mouna; Daaloul-Jedidi, Monia; Messadi, Lilia

    2015-09-30

    To date, no information is available regarding the presence of Anaplasma bovis in the South Mediterranean area. In this study, prevalence, risk factors, and genetic diversity of A. bovis were assessed in small ruminants. A total of 563 healthy small ruminants (260 sheep and 303 goats), from 25 randomly selected flocks located in 5 localities from two bioclimatic areas in Tunisia, were investigated for the detection of A. bovis in blood by nested polymerase chain reaction (nPCR) assay. The overall infection rates of A. bovis were 42.7 and 23.8% in sheep and goats, respectively. Goats located in a sub-humid area were statistically more infected than those located in a humid area. A. bovis prevalence rate varied significantly according to sheep and goat flocks, and to the sheep breed. Infection with A. bovis was validated by sequencing. Sequence analysis based on the 16S rRNA gene showed that A. bovis from Tunisian goats and sheep clustered with other strain sequences detected from wild and domestic animals and published in GenBank. This study gives the first insight of presence of A. bovis DNA in small ruminants in Tunisia and suggests that these animal species may be playing an important role in the bovine anaplasmosis natural cycle caused by A. bovis in the South Mediterranean ecosystem. PMID:26088935

  8. Functional and Immunological Relevance of Anaplasma marginale Major Surface Protein 1a Sequence and Structural Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Cabezas-Cruz, Alejandro; Passos, Lygia M. F.; Lis, Katarzyna; Kenneil, Rachel; Valdés, James J.; Ferrolho, Joana; Tonk, Miray; Pohl, Anna E.; Grubhoffer, Libor; Zweygarth, Erich; Shkap, Varda; Ribeiro, Mucio F. B.; Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Kocan, Katherine M.; de la Fuente, José

    2013-01-01

    Bovine anaplasmosis is caused by cattle infection with the tick-borne bacterium, Anaplasma marginale. The major surface protein 1a (MSP1a) has been used as a genetic marker for identifying A. marginale strains based on N-terminal tandem repeats and a 5′-UTR microsatellite located in the msp1a gene. The MSP1a tandem repeats contain immune relevant elements and functional domains that bind to bovine erythrocytes and tick cells, thus providing information about the evolution of host-pathogen and vector-pathogen interactions. Here we propose one nomenclature for A. marginale strain classification based on MSP1a. All tandem repeats among A. marginale strains were classified and the amino acid variability/frequency in each position was determined. The sequence variation at immunodominant B cell epitopes was determined and the secondary (2D) structure of the tandem repeats was modeled. A total of 224 different strains of A. marginale were classified, showing 11 genotypes based on the 5′-UTR microsatellite and 193 different tandem repeats with high amino acid variability per position. Our results showed phylogenetic correlation between MSP1a sequence, secondary structure, B-cell epitope composition and tick transmissibility of A. marginale strains. The analysis of MSP1a sequences provides relevant information about the biology of A. marginale to design vaccines with a cross-protective capacity based on MSP1a B-cell epitopes. PMID:23776456

  9. Evaluating the effectiveness of an inactivated vaccine from Anaplasma marginale derived from tick cell culture.

    PubMed

    Lasmar, Pedro Veloso Facury; Carvalho, Antônio Último de; Facury Filho, Elias Jorge; Bastos, Camila Valgas; Ribeiro, Múcio Flávio Barbosa

    2012-01-01

    The protective efficacy of an inactivated vaccine from Anaplasma marginale that was cultured in tick cells (IDE8) for use against bovine anaplasmosis was evaluated. Five calves (Group 1) were inoculated subcutaneously, at 21-day intervals, with three doses of vaccine containing 3 × 10(9) A. marginale initial bodies. Five control calves received saline solution alone (Group 2). Thirty-two days after the final inoculation, all the calves were challenged with approximately 3 × 10(5) erythrocytes infected with A. marginale high-virulence isolate (UFMG2). The Group 1 calves seroconverted 14 days after the second dose of vaccine. After the challenge, all the animals showed patent rickettsemia. There was no significant difference (p > 0.05) between the Group 1 and 2 calves during the incubation period, patency period or convalescence period. All the animals required treatment to prevent death. The results suggest that the inactivated vaccine from A. marginale produced in IDE8 induced seroconversion in calves, but was not effective for preventing anaplasmosis induced by the UFMG2 isolate under the conditions of this experiment. PMID:22832750

  10. AMU NEXRAD Exploitation Task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lambert, Winifred C.; Wheeler, Mark M.

    1997-01-01

    This report documents the results of the Applied Meteorology Unit's NEXRAD Exploitation Task. The objectives of this task are to determine what radar signatures are present prior to and at the time of convection initiation, and to determine radar signatures which will help distinguish whether the ensuing convection will become severe. Radar data from the WSR-88D radar located at NWS Melbourne (WSR-88D/KMLB) were collected between June and September 1995, and 16 convective case studies were analyzed for which the radar was operating during the entire period of interest. All WSR-88D/KMLB products were scrutinized for their utility in detecting convection initiation and severe storm signatures. Through process of elimination, it was found that the 0.5 deg reflectivity product with the lowest reflectivity values displayed is the best product to monitor for convection initiation signatures. Seven meteorological features associated with the initiation of deep convection were identified: the Merritt Island and Indian River convergence zones, interlake convergence, horizontal convective rolls, the sea breeze, storm outflow boundaries, and fires. Their reflectivity values ranged from -5 to 20 dBZ. Of the three severe weather phenomena (winds greater than or equal to 50 kts, tornado, 3/4 inch hail), high wind events due to microbursts were most common in the data set. It was found that the values and trends of composite reflectivity, vertically integrated liquid, and core aspect ratio were key indicators of the potential of a cell to produce a microburst. The data were not analyzed for the other two severe weather phenomena because they rarely occurred during the data collection period. This report also includes suggestions for new WSR-88D products, summaries of ongoing research aimed at creating new products, and explicit recommended procedures for detecting convection initiation and severe storm signatures in the radar data using the currently available technology.

  11. Canine infection with Dirofilaria immitis, Borrelia burgdorferi, Anaplasma spp., and Ehrlichia spp. in the United States, 2010–2012

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The geographic distribution of canine infection with vector-borne disease agents in the United States appears to be expanding. Methods To provide an updated assessment of geographic trends in canine infection with Dirofilaria immitis, Borrelia burgdorferi, Ehrlichia spp., and Anaplasma spp., we evaluated results from an average of 3,588,477 dogs tested annually by veterinarians throughout the United States from 2010 – 2012. Results As in an earlier summary report, the percent positive test results varied by agent and region, with antigen of D. immitis and antibody to Ehrlichia spp. most commonly identified in the Southeast (2.9% and 3.2%, respectively) and antibody to both B. burgdorferi and Anaplasma spp. most commonly identified in the Northeast (13.3% and 7.1%, respectively) and upper Midwest (4.4% and 3.9%, respectively). Percent positive test results for D. immitis antigen were lower in every region considered, including in the Southeast, than previously reported. Percent positive test results for antibodies to B. burgdorferi and Ehrlichia spp. were higher nationally than previously reported, and, for antibodies to Anaplasma spp., were higher in the Northeast but lower in the Midwest and West, than in the initial report. Annual reports of human cases of Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, and anaplasmosis were associated with percent positive canine test results by state for each respective tick-borne disease agent (R2 = 0.701, 0.457, and 0.314, respectively). Within endemic areas, percent positive test results for all three tick-borne agents demonstrated evidence of geographic expansion. Conclusions Continued national monitoring of canine test results for vector-borne zoonotic agents is an important tool for accurately mapping the geographic distribution of these agents, and greatly aids our understanding of the veterinary and public health threats they pose. PMID:24886589

  12. Temporal characterisation of the organ-specific Rhipicephalusmicroplus transcriptional response to Anaplasma marginale infection

    PubMed Central

    Mercado-Curiel, Ricardo F.; Palmer, Guy H.; Guerrero, Felix D.; Brayton, Kelly A.

    2011-01-01

    Arthropods transmit important infectious diseases of humans and animals. Importantly, replication and the development of pathogen infectivity are tightly linked to vector feeding on the mammalian host; thus analysis of the transcriptomes of both vector and pathogen during feeding is fundamental to understanding transmission. Using Anaplasma marginale infection of Rhipicephalusmicroplus as the experimental model, we tested three hypotheses exploring the temporal and organ-specific nature of the tick midgut and salivary gland transcriptomes during feeding and in response to infection. Numerous R. microplus genes were regulated in response to feeding and were differentially regulated between the midgut and salivary gland; additionally, there was a progression in regulated gene expression in the salivary gland over time. In contrast, relatively few tick genes were specifically regulated in response to A. marginale infection and these genes were predominantly annotated as hypothetical or were of unknown function. Notable among the genes with informative annotation was that several ribosomal proteins were down-regulated, suggesting that there may be a corresponding decrease in translation. The hypotheses that R. microplus midgut and salivary gland genes are differentially regulated and that the salivary gland transcriptome is dynamic over time were accepted. This is consistent with, and important for understanding the roles of, the two organs, the midgut serving as an initial site of uptake and replication while the salivary gland serves as the final site of replication and secretion. The nominal effect of A. marginale on the tick transcriptome in terms of numbers of regulated genes and fold of regulation supports the view that the vector–pathogen relationship is well established with minimal deleterious effect on the tick. The small set of predominantly hypothetical genes regulated by infection suggests that A. marginale is affecting a novel set of tick genes and may

  13. Primary Structural Variation in Anaplasma marginale Msp2 Efficiently Generates Immune Escape Variants

    PubMed Central

    Paradiso, Lydia; Broschat, Shira L.; Noh, Susan M.; Palmer, Guy H.

    2015-01-01

    Antigenic variation allows microbial pathogens to evade immune clearance and establish persistent infection. Anaplasma marginale utilizes gene conversion of a repertoire of silent msp2 alleles into a single active expression site to encode unique Msp2 variants. As the genomic complement of msp2 alleles alone is insufficient to generate the number of variants required for persistence, A. marginale uses segmental gene conversion, in which oligonucleotide segments from multiple alleles are recombined into the expression site to generate a novel msp2 mosaic not represented elsewhere in the genome. Whether these segmental changes are sufficient to evade a broad antibody response is unknown. We addressed this question by identifying Msp2 variants that differed in primary structure within the immunogenic hypervariable region microdomains and tested whether they represented true antigenic variants. The minimal primary structural difference between variants was a single amino acid resulting from a codon insertion, and overall, the amino acid identity among paired microdomains ranged from 18 to 92%. Collectively, 89% of the expressed structural variants were also antigenic variants across all biological replicates, independent of a specific host major histocompatibility complex haplotype. Biological relevance is supported by the following: (i) all structural variants were expressed during infection of a natural host, (ii) the structural variation observed in the microdomains corresponded to the mean length of variants generated by segmental gene conversion, and (iii) antigenic variants were identified using a broad antibody response that developed during infection of a natural host. The findings demonstrate that segmental gene conversion efficiently generates Msp2 antigenic variants. PMID:26259814

  14. Association of Pathogen Strain-Specific Gene Transcription and Transmission Efficiency Phenotype of Anaplasma marginale▿

    PubMed Central

    Agnes, Joseph T.; Herndon, David; Ueti, Massaro W.; Ramabu, Solomon S.; Evans, Marc; Brayton, Kelly A.; Palmer, Guy H.

    2010-01-01

    Efficient transmission of pathogens by an arthropod vector is influenced by the ability of the pathogen to replicate and develop infectiousness within the arthropod host. While the basic life cycle of development within and transmission from the arthropod vector are known for many bacterial and protozoan pathogens, the determinants of transmission efficiency are largely unknown and represent a significant gap in our knowledge. The St. Maries strain of Anaplasma marginale is a high-transmission-efficiency strain that replicates to a high titer in the tick salivary gland and can be transmitted by <10 ticks. In contrast, A. marginale subsp. centrale (Israel vaccine strain) has an identical life cycle but replicates to a significantly lower level in the salivary gland, with transmission requiring >30-fold more ticks. We hypothesized that strain-specific genes expressed in the tick salivary gland at the time of transmission are linked to the differences in the transmission efficiency phenotype. Using both annotation-dependent and -independent analyses of the complete genome sequences, we identified 58 strain-specific genes. These genes most likely represent divergence from common ancestral genes in one or both strains based on analysis of synteny and lack of statistical support for acquisition as islands by lateral gene transfer. Twenty of the St. Maries strain-specific genes and 16 of the strain-specific genes in the Israel strain were transcribed in the tick salivary gland at the time of transmission. Although associated with the transmission phenotype, the expression levels of strain-specific genes were equal to or less than the expression levels in infected erythrocytes in the mammalian host, suggesting that function is not limited to salivary gland colonization. PMID:20308303

  15. Global transcriptional analysis reveals surface remodeling of Anaplasma marginale in the tick vector

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Pathogens dependent upon vectors for transmission to new hosts undergo environment specific changes in gene transcription dependent on whether they are replicating in the vector or the mammalian host. Differential gene transcription, especially of potential vaccine candidates, is of interest in Anaplasma marginale, the tick-borne causative agent of bovine anaplasmosis. Methods RNA-seq technology allowed a comprehensive analysis of the transcriptional status of A. marginale genes in two conditions: bovine host blood and tick derived cell culture, a model for the tick vector. Quantitative PCR was used to assess transcription of a set of genes in A. marginale infected tick midguts and salivary glands at two time points during the transmission cycle. Results Genes belonging to fourteen pathways or component groups were found to be differentially transcribed in A. marginale in the bovine host versus the tick vector. One of the most significantly altered groups was composed of surface proteins. Of the 56 genes included in the surface protein group, eight were up regulated and 26 were down regulated. The down regulated surface protein encoding genes include several that are well studied due to their immunogenicity and function. Quantitative PCR of a set of genes demonstrated that transcription in tick cell culture most closely approximates transcription in salivary glands of recently infected ticks. Conclusions The ISE6 tick cell culture line is an acceptable model for early infection in tick salivary glands, and reveals disproportionate down regulation of surface protein genes in the tick. Transcriptional profiling in other cell lines may help us simulate additional microenvironments. Understanding vector-specific alteration of gene transcription, especially of surface protein encoding genes, may aid in the development of vaccines or transmission blocking therapies. PMID:24751137

  16. Association of pathogen strain-specific gene transcription and transmission efficiency phenotype of Anaplasma marginale.

    PubMed

    Agnes, Joseph T; Herndon, David; Ueti, Massaro W; Ramabu, Solomon S; Evans, Marc; Brayton, Kelly A; Palmer, Guy H

    2010-06-01

    Efficient transmission of pathogens by an arthropod vector is influenced by the ability of the pathogen to replicate and develop infectiousness within the arthropod host. While the basic life cycle of development within and transmission from the arthropod vector are known for many bacterial and protozoan pathogens, the determinants of transmission efficiency are largely unknown and represent a significant gap in our knowledge. The St. Maries strain of Anaplasma marginale is a high-transmission-efficiency strain that replicates to a high titer in the tick salivary gland and can be transmitted by <10 ticks. In contrast, A. marginale subsp. centrale (Israel vaccine strain) has an identical life cycle but replicates to a significantly lower level in the salivary gland, with transmission requiring >30-fold more ticks. We hypothesized that strain-specific genes expressed in the tick salivary gland at the time of transmission are linked to the differences in the transmission efficiency phenotype. Using both annotation-dependent and -independent analyses of the complete genome sequences, we identified 58 strain-specific genes. These genes most likely represent divergence from common ancestral genes in one or both strains based on analysis of synteny and lack of statistical support for acquisition as islands by lateral gene transfer. Twenty of the St. Maries strain-specific genes and 16 of the strain-specific genes in the Israel strain were transcribed in the tick salivary gland at the time of transmission. Although associated with the transmission phenotype, the expression levels of strain-specific genes were equal to or less than the expression levels in infected erythrocytes in the mammalian host, suggesting that function is not limited to salivary gland colonization. PMID:20308303

  17. Molecular characterization of Anaplasma marginale in ticks naturally feeding on buffaloes.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Jenevaldo Barbosa; da Fonseca, Adivaldo Henrique; Barbosa, José Diomedes

    2015-10-01

    Anaplasma marginale is the most prevalent pathogen transmitted by ticks in cattle in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. However, the tick species involved in the transmission of A. marginale in buffaloes in Brazil have not been identified. The objective of the present study was to determine the presence of A. marginale in ticks parasitizing water buffaloes. A total of 200 samples of Rhipicephalus microplus, Dermacentor nitens, Amblyomma cajennense, and Amblyomma maculatum were collected and tested by conventional and quantitative PCR for the presence of the msp1a and msp5 genes. In the present study, 35 ticks (17.5%) were positive for A. marginale DNA by qPCR analysis. The positive ticks belonged to four different species: R. microplus (22.2%), A. cajennense (13.8%), A. maculatum (16.0%), and D. nitens (10.0%). Individuals of the three developmental stages (larvae, nymphs, and adults) of R. microplus and A. cajennense were found to be positive for A. marginale, only nymphs and adults of A. maculatum were found to be positive, and finally, only adults of D. nitens were positive for A. marginale. Our results suggest that R. microplus, A. cajennense, A. maculatum, and D. nitens ticks may be involved in the transmission of A. marginale in buffaloes. However, while A. marginale PCR positive ticks were recorded, this does not indicate vector competence; only that the ticks may contain a blood meal from an infected host. Additionally, the results show that the strains of A. marginale from buffaloes and cattle are phylogenetically related. PMID:26209411

  18. Molecular and serological in-herd prevalence of Anaplasma marginale infection in Texas cattle.

    PubMed

    Hairgrove, Thomas; Schroeder, Megan E; Budke, Christine M; Rodgers, Sandy; Chung, Chungwon; Ueti, Massaro W; Bounpheng, Mangkey A

    2015-04-01

    Bovine anaplasmosis is an infectious, non-contagious disease caused by the rickettsial pathogen Anaplasma marginale (A. marginale). The organism has a global distribution and infects erythrocytes, resulting in anemia, jaundice, fever, abortions and death. Once infected, animals remain carriers for life. The carrier status provides immunity to clinical disease, but is problematic if infected and naïve cattle are comingled. Knowledge of infection prevalence and spatial distribution is important in disease management. The objective of this study was to assess A. marginale infection in-herd prevalence in Texas cattle using both molecular and serological methods. Blood samples from 11 cattle herds within Texas were collected and analyzed by reverse transcription quantitative real-time PCR (RT-qPCR) and a commercial competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (cELISA). Samples from experimentally infected animals were also analyzed and RT-qPCR detected A. marginale infection up to 15 days before cELISA, providing empirical data to support the interpretation of herd prevalence results. Herds with high prevalence were located in the north Texas Rolling Plains and west Trans-Pecos Desert, with RT-qPCR prevalence as high as 82% and cELISA prevalence as high as 88%. Overall prevalence was significantly higher in cattle in north and west Texas compared to cattle in east Texas (p<0.0001 for prevalence based on both RT-qPCR and cELISA). The overall RT-qPCR and cELISA results exhibited 90% agreement (kappa=0.79) and provide the first A. marginale infection prevalence study for Texas cattle using two diagnostic methods. Since cattle are the most important reservoir host for A. marginale and can serve as a source of infection for tick and mechanical transmission, information on infection prevalence is beneficial in the development of prevention and control strategies. PMID:25732914

  19. Immunization-induced anaplasma marginale-specific T lymphocyte reponses impaired by A. marginale infection are restored after eliminating the infection with tetracycline

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Infection of cattle with Anaplasma marginale fails to prime sustained effector/memory T-cell responses, and high bacterial load may induce antigen-specific CD4 T exhaustion and deletion. We tested the hypothesis that clearance of persistent infection restores the exhausted T-cell response. We show t...

  20. Independence of Anaplasma marginale Strains with High and Low Transmission Efficiencies in the Tick Vector following Simultaneous Acquisition by Feeding on a Superinfected Mammalian Reservoir Host

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Strain superinfection occurs when a second pathogen strain infects a host already carrying a primary strain. Anaplasma marginale superinfection occurs when the second strain encodes a unique variant surface repertoire as compared to the primary strain and the epidemiologic consequences depend on th...

  1. Independence of anaplasma marginale strains with high and low transmission efficiencies in the tick vector following simultaneous acquisition by feeding on a superinfected mammalian reservoir host

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Strain superinfection occurs when a second pathogen strain infects a host already carrying a primary strain. Anaplasma marginale superinfection occurs when the second strain carries a variant repertoire different from that of the primary strain, and the epidemiologic consequences depend on the relat...

  2. Anaplasma marginale infection with persistent high-load bacteremia induces a dysfunctional memory CD4+ T lymphocyte response but sustained high IgG titers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Control of blood-borne infections is dependent on antigen-specific effector and memory T cells and high-affinity IgG responses. In chronic infections characterized by a high antigen load, it has been shown that antigen-specific T and B cells are vulnerable to downregulation and apoptosis. Anaplasma ...

  3. Molecular characterization of Rickettsia massiliae and Anaplasma platys infecting Rhipicephalus sanguineus ticks and domestic dogs, Buenos Aires (Argentina).

    PubMed

    Cicuttin, Gabriel L; Brambati, Diego F; Rodríguez Eugui, Juan I; Lebrero, Cecilia González; De Salvo, María N; Beltrán, Fernando J; Gury Dohmen, Federico E; Jado, Isabel; Anda, Pedro

    2014-09-01

    Rickettsioses, ehrlichioses and anaplasmoses are emerging diseases that are mainly transmitted by arthropods and that affect humans and animals. The aim of the present study was to use molecular techniques to detect and characterize those pathogens in dogs and ticks from Buenos Aires city. We studied 207 Rhipicephalus sanguineus ticks and 52 canine blood samples from poor neighborhoods of Buenos Aires city. The samples were molecularly screened for the genera Rickettsia, Ehrlichia, and Anaplasma by PCR and sequencing. DNA of Rickettsia massiliae (3.4%) and Anaplasma platys (13.5%) was detected in ticks and blood samples, respectively. For characterization, the positive samples were subjected to amplification of a fragment of the 190-kDa outer membrane protein gene (spotted fever group rickettsiae) and a fragment of the groESL gene (specific for A. platys). A phylogenetic tree was constructed using the neighbor-joining method, revealing that the sequences were closely related to those of strains from other geographic regions. The results indicate that human and animal pathogens are abundant in dogs and their ticks in Buenos Aires city and portray the potentially high risk of human exposure to infection with these agents, especially in poor neighborhoods, where there is close contact with animals in an environment of poor health conditions. PMID:24907186

  4. Molecular detection and characterization of Anaplasma platys in dogs and ticks in Cuba.

    PubMed

    Silva, Claudia Bezerra da; Santos, Huarrisson Azevedo; Navarrete, Maylín González; Ribeiro, Carla Carolina Dias Uzedo; Gonzalez, Belkis Corona; Zaldivar, Maykelin Fuentes; Pires, Marcus Sandes; Peckle, Maristela; Costa, Renata Lins da; Vitari, Gabriela Lopes Vivas; Massard, Carlos Luiz

    2016-07-01

    Canine cyclic thrombocytopenia, an infectious disease caused by Anaplasma platys is a worldwide dog health problem. This study aimed to detect and characterize A. platys deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in dogs and ticks from Cuba using molecular methods. The study was conducted in four cities of Cuba (Habana del Este, Boyeros, Cotorro and San José de las Lajas). Blood samples were collected from 100 dogs in these cities. The animals were inspected for the detection of tick infestation and specimens were collected. Genomic DNA was extracted from dog blood and ticks using a commercial kit. Genomic DNA samples from blood and ticks were tested by a nested polymerase chain reaction (nPCR) to amplify 678 base pairs (bp) from the 16S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) of A. platys. Positive samples in nPCR were also subjected to PCR to amplify a fragment of 580bp from the citrate synthase (gltA) gene and the products were sequenced. Only Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato (s.l.) was found on dogs, and 10.20% (n=5/49) of these ticks plus sixteen percent (16.0%, n=16/100) of dogs were considered positive for A. platys by nPCR targeting the 16S rDNA gene. All analyzed gltA and 16S rDNA sequences showed a 99-100% identity with sequences of A. platys reported in around the world. Phylogenetic analysis showed two defined clusters for the 16S rDNA gene and three defined clusters for the gltA gene. Based on the gltA gene, the deduced amino acid sequence showed two mutations at positions 88 and 168 compared with the sequence DQ525687 (GenBank ID from Italian sample), used as a reference in the alignment. A preliminary study on the epidemiological aspects associated with infection by A. platys showed no statistical association with the variables studied (p>0.05). This is the first evidence of the presence of A. platys in dogs and ticks in Cuba. Further studies are needed to evaluate the epidemiological aspects of A. platys infection in Cuban dogs. PMID:27132516

  5. Subdominant Outer Membrane Antigens in Anaplasma marginale: Conservation, Antigenicity, and Protective Capacity Using Recombinant Protein

    PubMed Central

    Ducken, Deirdre R.; Brown, Wendy C.; Alperin, Debra C.; Brayton, Kelly A.; Reif, Kathryn E.; Turse, Joshua E.; Palmer, Guy H.; Noh, Susan M.

    2015-01-01

    Anaplasma marginale is a tick-borne rickettsial pathogen of cattle with a worldwide distribution. Currently a safe and efficacious vaccine is unavailable. Outer membrane protein (OMP) extracts or a defined surface protein complex reproducibly induce protective immunity. However, there are several knowledge gaps limiting progress in vaccine development. First, are these OMPs conserved among the diversity of A. marginale strains circulating in endemic regions? Second, are the most highly conserved outer membrane proteins in the immunogens recognized by immunized and protected animals? Lastly, can this subset of OMPs recognized by antibody from protected vaccinates and conserved among strains recapitulate the protection of outer membrane vaccines? To address the first goal, genes encoding OMPs AM202, AM368, AM854, AM936, AM1041, and AM1096, major subdominant components of the outer membrane, were cloned and sequenced from geographically diverse strains and isolates. AM202, AM936, AM854, and AM1096 share 99.9 to 100% amino acid identity. AM1041 has 97.1 to 100% and AM368 has 98.3 to 99.9% amino acid identity. While all four of the most highly conserved OMPs were recognized by IgG from animals immunized with outer membranes, linked surface protein complexes, or unlinked surface protein complexes and shown to be protected from challenge, the highest titers and consistent recognition among vaccinates were to AM854 and AM936. Consequently, animals were immunized with recombinant AM854 and AM936 and challenged. Recombinant vaccinates and purified outer membrane vaccinates had similar IgG and IgG2 responses to both proteins. However, the recombinant vaccinates developed higher bacteremia after challenge as compared to adjuvant-only controls and outer membrane vaccinates. These results provide the first evidence that vaccination with specific antigens may exacerbate disease. Progressing from the protective capacity of outer membrane formulations to recombinant vaccines

  6. Transcriptional pathways associated with the slow growth phenotype of transformed Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The ability to genetically manipulate bacteria has been fundamentally important for both basic biological discovery and translational research to develop new vaccines and antibiotics. Experimental alteration of the genetic content of prokaryotic pathogens has revealed both expected functional relationships and unexpected phenotypic consequences. Slow growth phenotypes have been reported for multiple transformed bacterial species, including extracellular and intracellular pathogens. Understanding the genes and pathways responsible for the slow growth phenotype provides the opportunity to develop attenuated vaccines as well as bacteriostatic antibiotics. Transformed Anaplasma marginale, a rickettsial pathogen, exhibits slow growth in vitro and in vivo as compared to the parent wild type strain, providing the opportunity to identify the underlying genes and pathways associated with this phenotype. Results Whole genome transcriptional profiling allowed for identification of specific genes and pathways altered in transformed A. marginale. Genes found immediately upstream and downstream of the insertion site, including a four gene operon encoding key outer membrane proteins, were not differentially transcribed between wild type and transformed A. marginale. This lack of significant difference in transcription of flanking genes and the large size of the insert relative to the genome were consistent with a trans rather than a cis effect. Transcriptional profiling across the complete genome identified the most differentially transcribed genes, including an iron transporter, an RNA cleaving enzyme and several genes involved in translation. In order to confirm the trend seen in translation-related genes, K-means clustering and Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA) were applied. These algorithms allowed evaluation of the behavior of genes as groups that share transcriptional status or biological function. Clustering and GSEA confirmed the initial observations and

  7. Sensory exploitation and sexual conflict

    PubMed Central

    Arnqvist, Göran

    2006-01-01

    Much of the literature on male–female coevolution concerns the processes by which male traits and female preferences for these can coevolve and be maintained by selection. There has been less explicit focus on the origin of male traits and female preferences. Here, I argue that it is important to distinguish origin from subsequent coevolution and that insights into the origin can help us appreciate the relative roles of various coevolutionary processes for the evolution of diversity in sexual dimorphism. I delineate four distinct scenarios for the origin of male traits and female preferences that build on past contributions, two of which are based on pre-existing variation in quality indicators among males and two on exploitation of pre-existing sensory biases among females. Recent empirical research, and theoretical models, suggest that origin by sensory exploitation has been widespread. I argue that this points to a key, but perhaps transient, role for sexually antagonistic coevolution (SAC) in the subsequent evolutionary elaboration of sexual traits, because (i) sensory exploitation is often likely to be initially costly for individuals of the exploited sex and (ii) the subsequent evolution of resistance to sensory exploitation should often be associated with costs due to selective constraints. A review of a few case studies is used to illustrate these points. Empirical data directly relevant to the costs of being sensory exploited and the costs of evolving resistance is largely lacking, and I stress that such data would help determining the general importance of sexual conflict and SAC for the evolution of sexual dimorphism. PMID:16612895

  8. Influence of experimental Anaplasma marginale infection and splenectomy on NTPDase and 5'nucleotidase activities in platelets of cattle.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Rovaina L; Oliveira, Camila B; França, Raqueli T; Doleski, Pedro H; Souza, Viviane C; Leal, Daniela B R; Martins, João R; Lopes, Sonia T A; Machado, Gustavo; Da Silva, Aleksandro S; Andrade, Cinthia M

    2016-06-01

    The objective of this paper was to evaluate NTPDase and 5'-nucleotidase activities in platelets of bovine with and without spleen and infected by Anaplasma marginale. Our results demonstrate that infection along with splenectomy is able of inducing a profile of cellular protection, which showed an increase in the degradation of the nucleotides ATP and ADP by NTPDase, in addition to AMP by 5'nucleotidase to form the nucleoside adenosine in platelets, i.e., the enzymatic activities of platelets were increased in splenectomized animals when compared to non-splenectomized group. It notes that adenosine is a molecule with anti-inflammatory function. But this profile is related to a deficiency in immune signaling triggered by nucleotide ATP, which may be related to the increase in bacteremia and disability in combating the parasite in splenectomized host. PMID:26945560

  9. Simultaneous Variation of the Immunodominant Outer Membrane Proteins, MSP2 and MSP3, during Anaplasma marginale Persistence In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Brayton, Kelly A.; Meeus, Patrick F. M.; Barbet, Anthony F.; Palmer, Guy H.

    2003-01-01

    Vector-borne bacterial pathogens persist in the mammalian host by varying surface antigens to evade the existing immune response. To test whether the model of surface coat switching and immune evasion can be extended to a vector-borne bacterial pathogen with multiple immunodominant surface proteins, we examined Anaplasma marginale, a rickettsia with two highly immunogenic outer membrane proteins, major surface protein 2 (MSP2) and MSP3. The simultaneous clearance of variants of the two most immunodominant surface proteins of A. marginale followed by emergence of unique variants indicates that the switch rates and immune selection for MSP2 and MSP3 are sufficiently similar to explain the cyclic bacteremia observed during infection in the immunocompetent host. PMID:14573687

  10. In vitro establishment and propagation of a Brazilian strain of Anaplasma marginale with appendage in IDE8 (Ixodes scapularis) cells

    PubMed Central

    Bastos, Camila V.; Passos, Lygia M. F.; Vasconcelos, Maria Mercês C.; Ribeiro, Múcio F. B.

    2009-01-01

    A Brazilian isolate of Anaplasma marginale with appendage was successfully established and maintained in vitro in a tick cell line (IDE8). Infection was confirmed by optical and transmission electron microscopy. In addition, primers MSP1aNF2 and MSP1aNR2 amplified products from DNA extracted from infected IDE8 cells. Comparisons with partial sequences of the msp1α gene and the complete genome of A. marginale confirmed that the sequences of amplified fragments were from the A. marginale genome. This is the first establishment of a Brazilian A. marginale isolate in tick cells, representing a new system for biological and molecular studies and also a new source of material for diagnosis and development of vaccines. PMID:24031379

  11. Bacterial Profiling Reveals Novel “Ca. Neoehrlichia”, Ehrlichia, and Anaplasma Species in Australian Human-Biting Ticks

    PubMed Central

    Gofton, Alexander W.; Doggett, Stephen; Ratchford, Andrew; Oskam, Charlotte L.; Paparini, Andrea; Ryan, Una; Irwin, Peter

    2015-01-01

    In Australia, a conclusive aetiology of Lyme disease-like illness in human patients remains elusive, despite growing numbers of people presenting with symptoms attributed to tick bites. In the present study, we surveyed the microbial communities harboured by human-biting ticks from across Australia to identify bacteria that may contribute to this syndrome. Universal PCR primers were used to amplify the V1-2 hyper-variable region of bacterial 16S rRNA genes in DNA samples from individual Ixodes holocyclus (n = 279), Amblyomma triguttatum (n = 167), Haemaphysalis bancrofti (n = 7), and H. longicornis (n = 7) ticks. The 16S amplicons were sequenced on the Illumina MiSeq platform and analysed in USEARCH, QIIME, and BLAST to assign genus and species-level taxonomies. Nested PCR and Sanger sequencing were used to confirm the NGS data and further analyse novel findings. All 460 ticks were negative for Borrelia spp. by both NGS and nested PCR analysis. Two novel “Candidatus Neoehrlichia” spp. were identified in 12.9% of I. holocyclus ticks. A novel Anaplasma sp. was identified in 1.8% of A. triguttatum ticks, and a novel Ehrlichia sp. was identified in both A. triguttatum (1.2%) ticks and a single I. holocyclus (0.6%) tick. Further phylogenetic analysis of novel “Ca. Neoehrlichia”, Anaplasma and Ehrlichia based on 1,265 bp 16S rRNA gene sequences suggests that these are new species. Determining whether these newly discovered organisms cause disease in humans and animals, like closely related bacteria do abroad, is of public health importance and requires further investigation. PMID:26709826

  12. The Exploitation of Black Athletes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edwards, Harry

    1983-01-01

    Colleges and universities have not up held their end of the bargain with athletes, exploiting a disproportionate number of talented Black athletes by not providing the kind of education the students sought or needed and by applying rigid academic standards for eligibility. (MSE)

  13. Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis, Japan

    PubMed Central

    Gaowa; Wuritu; Kawamori, Fumihiko; Wu, Dongxing; Yoshikawa, Yuko; Chiya, Seizou; Fukunaga, Kazutoshi; Funato, Toyohiko; Shiojiri, Masaaki; Nakajima, Hideki; Hamauzu, Yoshiji; Takano, Ai; Kawabata, Hiroki; Ando, Shuji; Kishimoto, Toshio

    2013-01-01

    We retrospectively confirmed 2 cases of human Anaplasma phagocytophilum infection. Patient blood samples contained unique p44/msp2 for the pathogen, and antibodies bound to A. phagocytophilum antigens propagated in THP-1 rather than HL60 cells. Unless both cell lines are used for serodiagnosis of rickettsiosis-like infections, cases of human granulocytic anaplasmosis could go undetected. PMID:23460988

  14. Infections and risk factors for livestock with species of Anaplasma, Babesia and Brucella under semi-nomadic rearing in Karamoja Region, Uganda.

    PubMed

    Lolli, Chiara; Marenzoni, Maria Luisa; Strona, Paolo; Lappo, Pier Giorgio; Etiang, Patrick; Diverio, Silvana

    2016-03-01

    A survey was conducted to estimate the prevalence of Anaplasma, Babesia and Brucella spp. infections in cattle, goats and sheep in the Karamoja Region of Uganda and to identify possible risk factors existing in this semi-nomadic and pastoral area. Low cost laboratory tests were used to diagnose infections (Rose Bengal test for Brucella spp. antibodies and direct microscopic examination for Anaplasma and Babesia spp.). Multivariable logistic regression models were applied to identify possible risk factors linked to gender, animal species, age (only for cattle) and districts. A total of 3935 cattle, 729 goats and 306 sheep of five districts of the Karamoja Region were tested. Seroprevalence for Brucella was 9.2 % (CI, 95 %: 8.4-10), for Anaplasma 19.5 % (CI 95 %: 18.4-20.6) and for Babesia 16 % (CI 95 %: 15-17.1). Significant differences in infections prevalence were observed against risk factors associated with districts and species. Cattle were the species with higher risk of the infections. Female gender was identified as at risk only for Brucella spp. infection. Cattle more than one year old had greater likelihood to be Brucella seropositive. Co-infections of Anaplasma and Babesia spp. were statistically associated, especially in goats and sheep. Further studies to identify risk factors related to host species and geographical districts are needed. The influence on the semi-nomadic agro-pastoral system in Karamoja of animal raids and animal mixing should be further investigated. Findings were important to sensitize Karamojong undertaking measures on infection control, especially on cattle, which are their main source of food. PMID:26888206

  15. Teotihuacan, tepeapulco, and obsidian exploitation.

    PubMed

    Charlton, T H

    1978-06-16

    Current cultural ecological models of the development of civilization in central Mexico emphasize the role of subsistence production techniques and organization. The recent use of established and productive archeological surface survey techniques along natural corridors of communication between favorable niches for cultural development within the Central Mexican symbiotic region resulted in the location of sites that indicate an early development of a decentralized resource exploitation, manufacturing, and exchange network. The association of the development of this system with Teotihuacán indicates the importance such nonsubsistence production and exchange had in the evolution of this first central Mexican civilization. The later expansion of Teotihuacán into more distant areas of Mesoamerica was based on this resource exploitation model. Later civilizations centered at Tula and Tenochtitlán also used such a model in their expansion. PMID:17738704

  16. Dark matters: exploitation as cooperation.

    PubMed

    Dasgupta, Partha

    2012-04-21

    The empirical literature on human cooperation contains studies of communitarian institutions that govern the provision of public goods and management of common property resources in poor countries. Scholars studying those institutions have frequently used the Prisoners' Dilemma game as their theoretical tool-kit. But neither the provision of local public goods nor the management of local common property resources involves the Prisoners' Dilemma. That has implications for our reading of communitarian institutions. By applying a fundamental result in the theory of repeated games to a model of local common property resources, it is shown that communitarian institutions can harbour exploitation of fellow members, something that would not be possible in societies where cooperation amounts to overcoming the Prisoners' Dilemma. The conclusion we should draw is that exploitation can masquerade as cooperation. PMID:21549130

  17. Exploiting perceptual redundancy in images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Hongyi; Chen, Zhenzhong

    2015-03-01

    Exploiting perceptual redundancy plays an important role in image processing. Conventional JND models describe the visibility of the minimally perceptible difference by assuming that the visual acuity is consistent over the whole image. Some earlier work considers the space-variant properties of HVS-based on the non-uniform density of photoreceptor cells. In this paper, we aim to exploit the relationship between the masking effects and the foveation properties of HVS. We design the psychophysical experiments which are conducted to model the foveation properties in response to the masking effects. The experiment examines the reduction of visual sensitivity in HVS due to the increased retinal eccentricity. Based on these experiments, the developed Foveated JND model measures the perceptible difference of images according to masking effects therefore provides the information to quantify the perceptual redundancy in the images. Subjective evaluations validate the proposed FJND model.

  18. The ESA Geohazard Exploitation Platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bally, Philippe; Laur, Henri; Mathieu, Pierre-Philippe; Pinto, Salvatore

    2015-04-01

    Earthquakes represent one of the world's most significant hazards in terms both of loss of life and damages. In the first decade of the 21st century, earthquakes accounted for 60 percent of fatalities from natural disasters, according to the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UNISDR). To support mitigation activities designed to assess and reduce risks and improve response in emergency situations, satellite EO can be used to provide a broad range of geo-information services. This includes for instance crustal block boundary mapping to better characterize active faults, strain rate mapping to assess how rapidly faults are deforming, soil vulnerability mapping to help estimate how the soil is behaving in reaction to seismic phenomena, geo-information to assess the extent and intensity of the earthquake impact on man-made structures and formulate assumptions on the evolution of the seismic sequence, i.e. where local aftershocks or future main shocks (on nearby faults) are most likely to occur. In May 2012, the European Space Agency and the GEO Secretariat convened the International Forum on Satellite EO for Geohazards now known as the Santorini Conference. The event was the continuation of a series of international workshops such as those organized by the Geohazards Theme of the Integrated Global Observing Strategy Partnership. In Santorini the seismic community has set out a vision of the EO contribution to an operational global seismic risk program, which lead to the Geohazard Supersites and Natural Laboratories (GSNL) initiative. The initial contribution of ESA to suuport the GSNL was the first Supersites Exploitation Platform (SSEP) system in the framework of Grid Processing On Demand (GPOD), now followed by the Geohazard Exploitation Platform (GEP). In this presentation, we will describe the contribution of the GEP for exploiting satellite EO for geohazard risk assessment. It is supporting the GEO Supersites and has been further

  19. Routing Algorithm Exploits Spatial Relations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Okino, Clayton; Jennings, Esther

    2004-01-01

    A recently developed routing algorithm for broadcasting in an ad hoc wireless communication network takes account of, and exploits, the spatial relationships among the locations of nodes, in addition to transmission power levels and distances between the nodes. In contrast, most prior algorithms for discovering routes through ad hoc networks rely heavily on transmission power levels and utilize limited graph-topology techniques that do not involve consideration of the aforesaid spatial relationships. The present algorithm extracts the relevant spatial-relationship information by use of a construct denoted the relative-neighborhood graph (RNG).

  20. Knowledge based SAR images exploitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, David L.

    1987-01-01

    One of the basic functions of SAR images exploitation system is the detection of man-made objects. The performance of object detection is strongly limited by performance of segmentation modules. This paper presents a detection paradigm composed of an adaptive segmentation algorithm based on a priori knowledge of objects followed by a top-down hierarchical detection process that generates and evaluates object hypotheses. Shadow information and inter-object relationships can be added to the knowledge base to improve performance over that of a statistical detector based only on the attributes of individual objects.

  1. National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

    MedlinePlus

    ... child Call 1-800-843-5678 Report sexual exploitation of a child The CyberTipline ® receives leads and tips regarding suspected crimes of sexual exploitation committed against children. More than 3.3 million ...

  2. The exploitation argument against commercial surrogacy.

    PubMed

    Wilkinson, Stephen

    2003-04-01

    This paper discusses the exploitation argument against commercial surrogacy: the claim that commercial surrogacy is morally objectionable because it is exploitative. The following questions are addressed. First, what exactly does the exploitation argument amount to? Second, is commercial surrogacy in fact exploitative? Third, if it were exploitative, would this provide a sufficient reason to prohibit (or otherwise legislatively discourage) it? The focus throughout is on the exploitation of paid surrogates, although it is noted that other parties (e.g. 'commissioning parents') may also be the victims of exploitation. It is argued that there are good reasons for believing that commercial surrogacy is often exploitative. However, even if we accept this, the exploitation argument for prohibiting (or otherwise legislatively discouraging) commercial surrogacy remains quite weak. One reason for this is that prohibition may well 'backfire' and lead to potential surrogates having to do other things that are more exploitative and/or more harmful than paid surrogacy. It is concluded therefore that those who oppose exploitation should (rather than attempting to stop particular practices like commercial surrogacy) concentrate on: (a) improving the conditions under which paid surrogates 'work'; and (b) changing the background conditions (in particular, the unequal distribution of power and wealth) which generate exploitative relationships. PMID:12812183

  3. Anaplasma marginale major surface protein 1a directs cell surface display of tick BM95 immunogenic peptides on Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Canales, Mario; Almazán, Consuelo; Pérez de la Lastra, José M; de la Fuente, José

    2008-07-31

    The surface display of heterologous proteins on live Escherichia coli using anchoring motifs from outer membranes proteins has impacted on many areas of biochemistry, molecular biology and biotechnology. The Anaplasma marginale major surface protein 1a (MSP1a) contains N-terminal surface-exposed repeated peptides (28-289 amino acids) that are involved in pathogen interaction with host cell receptors and is surface-displayed when the recombinant protein is expressed in E. coli. Therefore, it was predicted that MSP1a would surface display on E. coli peptides inserted in the N-terminal repeats region of the protein. The Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus BM86 and BM95 glycoproteins are homologous proteins that protect cattle against tick infestations. In this study, we demonstrated that a recombinant protein comprising tick BM95 immunogenic peptides fused to the A. marginale MSP1a N-terminal region is displayed on the E. coli surface and is recognized by anti-BM86 and anti-MSP1a antibodies. This system provides a novel approach to the surface display of heterologous antigenic proteins on live E. coli and suggests the possibility to use the recombinant bacteria for immunization studies against cattle tick infestations. PMID:18582976

  4. Knockdown of the Rhipicephalus microplus Cytochrome c Oxidase Subunit III Gene Is Associated with a Failure of Anaplasma marginale Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Bifano, Thais D.; Ueti, Massaro W.; Esteves, Eliane; Reif, Kathryn E.; Braz, Glória R. C.; Scoles, Glen A.; Bastos, Reginaldo G.; White, Stephen N.; Daffre, Sirlei

    2014-01-01

    Rhipicephalus microplus is an obligate hematophagous ectoparasite of cattle and an important biological vector of Anaplasma marginale in tropical and subtropical regions. The primary determinants for A. marginale transmission are infection of the tick gut, followed by infection of salivary glands. Transmission of A. marginale to cattle occurs via infected saliva delivered during tick feeding. Interference in colonization of either the tick gut or salivary glands can affect transmission of A. marginale to naïve animals. In this study, we used the tick embryonic cell line BME26 to identify genes that are modulated in response to A. marginale infection. Suppression-subtractive hybridization libraries (SSH) were constructed, and five up-regulated genes {glutathione S-transferase (GST), cytochrome c oxidase sub III (COXIII), dynein (DYN), synaptobrevin (SYN) and phosphatidylinositol-3,4,5-triphosphate 3-phosphatase (PHOS)} were selected as targets for functional in vivo genomic analysis. RNA interference (RNAi) was used to determine the effect of tick gene knockdown on A. marginale acquisition and transmission. Although RNAi consistently knocked down all individually examined tick genes in infected tick guts and salivary glands, only the group of ticks injected with dsCOXIII failed to transmit A. marginale to naïve calves. To our knowledge, this is the first report demonstrating that RNAi of a tick gene is associated with a failure of A. marginale transmission. PMID:24878588

  5. Imidocarb dipropionate in the treatment of Anaplasma marginale in cattle: Effects on enzymes of the antioxidant, cholinergic, and adenosinergic systems.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Rovaina L; Fritzen, Alexandro; Bottari, Nathieli B; Alves, Mariana S; da Silva, Aniélen D; Morsch, Vera M; Schetinger, Maria Rosa C; Martins, João R; Santos, Julsan S; Machado, Gustavo; da Silva, Aleksandro S

    2016-08-01

    Anaplasmosis is a worldwide hemolytic disease in cattle caused by a gram-negative obligatory intracellular bacterium, characterized by anemia and jaundice. Among the treatments used for anaplasmosis is a drug called imidocarb dipropionate, also indicated as an immunomodulator agent. However, it causes side effects associated with increased levels of acetylcholine. In view of this, the effects of imidocarb dipropionate on the purinergic system, and antioxidant enzymes in animals naturally infected by Anaplasma marginale were evaluated. Young cattle (n = 22) infected by A. marginale were divided into two groups: the Group A consisted of 11 animals used as controls; and the Group B composed of 11 animals. Imidocarb dipropionate (5 mg/kg) was used subcutaneously to treat both groups (the Group A on day 6 and the Group B on day 0). The treatment reduced acetylcholinesterase (AChE), and adenosine deaminase (ADA) activities, and increased the dismutase superoxide and catalase activities. No changes on lipid peroxidation (TBARS levels) and BChE activities were noticed. These results suggest that imidocarb dipropionate used to treat A. marginale infection in cattle has effect on antioxidant enzymes, and significantly inhibits the enzymatic activities of ADA and AChE. PMID:27301742

  6. Tick-Borne Transmission of Two Genetically Distinct Anaplasma marginale Strains following Superinfection of the Mammalian Reservoir Host▿

    PubMed Central

    Leverich, Christina K.; Palmer, Guy H.; Knowles, Donald P.; Brayton, Kelly A.

    2008-01-01

    Strain superinfection affects the dynamics of epidemiological spread of pathogens through a host population. Superinfection has recently been shown to occur for two genetically distinct strains of the tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma marginale that encode distinctly different surface protein variants. Superinfected animals could serve as a reservoir for onward transmission of both strains if the tick vector is capable of acquiring and transmitting both strains. Whether competition among strains during development within the tick vector, which requires sequential invasion and replication events, limits colonization and subsequent transmission to a single strain is unknown. We tested this possibility by acquisition feeding Dermacentor andersoni ticks on a reservoir host superinfected with the genetically distinct St. Maries and EMΦ strains. Although the St. Maries strain consistently maintained higher bacteremia levels in the mammalian host and the EMΦ strain had an early advantage in colonization of the tick salivary glands, individual ticks were coinfected, and there was successful transmission of both strains. These results indicate that a genetically distinct A. marginale strain capable of superinfecting the mammalian host can subsequently be cotransmitted and become established within the host population despite the presence of an existing established strain. PMID:18573892

  7. Generation of Antigenic Variants via Gene Conversion: Evidence for Recombination Fitness Selection at the Locus Level in Anaplasma marginale▿

    PubMed Central

    Futse, James E.; Brayton, Kelly A.; Nydam, Seth D.; Palmer, Guy H.

    2009-01-01

    Multiple bacterial and protozoal pathogens utilize gene conversion to generate antigenically variant surface proteins to evade immune clearance and establish persistent infection. Both the donor alleles that encode the variants following recombination into an expression site and the donor loci themselves are under evolutionary selection: the alleles that encode variants that are sufficiently antigenically unique yet retain growth fitness and the loci that allow efficient recombination. We examined allelic usage in generating Anaplasma marginale variants during in vivo infection in the mammalian reservoir host and identified preferential usage of specific alleles in the absence of immune selective pressure, consistent with certain individual alleles having a fitness advantage for in vivo growth. In contrast, the loci themselves appear to have been essentially equally selected for donor function in gene conversion with no significant effect of locus position relative to the expression site or origin of replication. This pattern of preferential allelic usage but lack of locus effect was observed independently for Msp2 and Msp3 variants, both generated by gene conversion. Furthermore, there was no locus effect observed when a single locus contained both msp2 and msp3 alleles in a tail-to-tail orientation flanked by a repeat. These experimental results support the hypothesis that predominance of specific variants reflects in vivo fitness as determined by the encoding allele, independent of locus structure and chromosomal position. Identification of highly fit variants provides targets for vaccines that will prevent the high-level bacteremia associated with acute disease. PMID:19487473

  8. Seroprevalence estimation and management factors associated with high herd seropositivity for Anaplasma marginale in commercial dairy farms of Puerto Rico.

    PubMed

    Urdaz-Rodríguez, J H; Fosgate, G T; Alleman, A R; Rae, D O; Donovan, G A; Melendez, P

    2009-10-01

    A cross-sectional study was conducted to determine individual cow seroprevalence of Anaplasma marginale in adult lactating dairy cattle of Puerto Rico (PR) and to assess the associations of farm management factors on herd seroprevalence. Antibody activity against A. marginale was determined using the MSP-5 competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Serum samples were obtained from 2,414 adult lactating dairy cattle from 76 randomly selected commercial dairy farms. Herd seroprevalence ranged from 3 to 100% with an overall individual cow seroprevalence for A. marginale of 27.4%. Factors associated with high herd seropositivity were pasture grazing as the main feed source (OR = 6.5, 95% CI = 1.2-34), observed monkeys on the premises (OR = 13, 95% CI = 1.2-138), use of 11% permethrin (OR = 17, 95% CI = 2.2-129), farmers who attended an acaricide certification program (OR = 0.18, 95% CI = 0.04-0.74), and lack of a fly control program (OR = 5.6, 95% CI = 1.3-24). PMID:19337849

  9. Presence of common antigens, including major surface protein epitopes, between the cattle (intraerythrocytic) and tick stages of Anaplasma marginale.

    PubMed Central

    Palmer, G H; Kocan, K M; Barron, S J; Hair, J A; Barbet, A F; Davis, W C; McGuire, T C

    1985-01-01

    Epitopes of major surface proteins of the intraerythrocytic cattle stage of Anaplasma marginale were demonstrated in the midgut stage of the organism within the infective tick host Dermacentor andersoni. These proteins were common to all A. marginale isolates tested and at all stages of parasitemia. Sera from cattle immunized with the tick midgut stage of A. marginale immunoprecipitated multiple-erythrocyte-stage proteins, as demonstrated by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The major proteins recognized (primarily greater than 14 and less than 200 kilodaltons [kDa]) included two major-erythrocyte-stage surface proteins of 36 and 105 kDa molecular size. To confirm the presence of common tick and erythrocyte A. marginale antigens with the immunized cattle sera, we purified the 36-kDa erythrocyte-stage protein by monoclonal immunoaffinity chromatography and developed an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay based on the purified protein. All sera from cattle immunized with tick-stage A. marginale and cattle infected with various isolates of A. marginale developed antibodies to the 36-kDa protein. The potential immunoprophylactic, diagnostic, and epidemiologic value of the major epitopes common to both the invertebrate and mammalian stages of A. marginale, especially the 36-kDa protein, is discussed. Images PMID:2415457

  10. Energy for lunar resource exploitation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glaser, Peter E.

    1992-01-01

    Humanity stands at the threshold of exploiting the known lunar resources that have opened up with the access to space. America's role in the future exploitation of space, and specifically of lunar resources, may well determine the level of achievement in technology development and global economic competition. Space activities during the coming decades will significantly influence the events on Earth. The 'shifting of history's tectonic plates' is a process that will be hastened by the increasingly insistent demands for higher living standards of the exponentially growing global population. Key to the achievement of a peaceful world in the 21st century, will be the development of a mix of energy resources at a societally acceptable and affordable cost within a realistic planning horizon. This must be the theme for the globally applicable energy sources that are compatible with the Earth's ecology. It is in this context that lunar resources development should be a primary goal for science missions to the Moon, and for establishing an expanding human presence. The economic viability and commercial business potential of mining, extracting, manufacturing, and transporting lunar resource based materials to Earth, Earth orbits, and to undertake macroengineering projects on the Moon remains to be demonstrated. These extensive activities will be supportive of the realization of the potential of space energy sources for use on Earth. These may include generating electricity for use on Earth based on beaming power from Earth orbits and from the Moon to the Earth, and for the production of helium 3 as a fuel for advanced fusion reactors.

  11. Opportunistic exploitation: an overlooked pathway to extinction.

    PubMed

    Branch, Trevor A; Lobo, Aaron S; Purcell, Steven W

    2013-07-01

    How can species be exploited economically to extinction? Past single-species hypotheses examining the economic plausibility of exploiting rare species have argued that the escalating value of rarity allows extinction to be profitable. We describe an alternative pathway toward extinction in multispecies exploitation systems, termed 'opportunistic exploitation'. In this mode, highly valued species that are targeted first by fishing, hunting, and logging become rare, but their populations can decline further through opportunistic exploitation while more common but less desirable species are targeted. Effectively, expanding exploitation to more species subsidizes the eventual extinction of valuable species at low densities. Managers need to recognize conditions that permit opportunistic depletion and pass regulations to protect highly desirable species when exploitation can expand to other species. PMID:23562732

  12. Immunization-Induced Anaplasma marginale-Specific T-Lymphocyte Responses Impaired by A. marginale Infection Are Restored after Eliminating Infection with Tetracycline

    PubMed Central

    Turse, Joshua E.; Scoles, Glen A.; Deringer, James R.; Fry, Lindsay M.

    2014-01-01

    Infection of cattle with Anaplasma marginale fails to prime sustained effector/memory T-cell responses, and high bacterial load may induce antigen-specific CD4 T exhaustion and deletion. We tested the hypothesis that clearance of persistent infection restores the exhausted T-cell response. We show that infection-induced T-cell exhaustion, characterized as loss of antigen-specific proliferation, and gamma interferon (IFN-γ) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) production are partially restored in cattle following clearance of persistent infection with tetracycline. PMID:25008904

  13. Immunization-induced Anaplasma marginale-specific T-lymphocyte responses impaired by A. marginale infection are restored after eliminating infection with tetracycline.

    PubMed

    Turse, Joshua E; Scoles, Glen A; Deringer, James R; Fry, Lindsay M; Brown, Wendy C

    2014-09-01

    Infection of cattle with Anaplasma marginale fails to prime sustained effector/memory T-cell responses, and high bacterial load may induce antigen-specific CD4 T exhaustion and deletion. We tested the hypothesis that clearance of persistent infection restores the exhausted T-cell response. We show that infection-induced T-cell exhaustion, characterized as loss of antigen-specific proliferation, and gamma interferon (IFN-γ) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) production are partially restored in cattle following clearance of persistent infection with tetracycline. PMID:25008904

  14. Exploiting dual otoacoustic emission sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdala, Carolina; Kalluri, Radha

    2015-12-01

    Two distinct processes generate otoacoustic emissions (OAEs). Reflection-source emissions, here recorded as stimulus frequency OAEs, are optimally informative at low sound levels and are more sensitive to slight hearing loss; they have been linked to cochlear amplifier gain and tuning. Distortion-source emissions are strongest at moderate-high sound levels and persist despite mild hearing loss; they likely originate in the nonlinear process of hair cell transduction. In this preliminary study, we exploit the unique features of each by generating a combined reflection-distortion OAE profile in normal hearing and hearing-impaired ears. Distortion-product (DP) and stimulus-frequency (SF) OAEs were recorded over a broad range of stimulus levels and frequencies. Individual I/O and transfer functions were generated for both emission types in each ear, and OAE peak strength, compression threshold, and rate of compression were calculated. These combined SFOAE and DPOAE features in normal and hearing-impaired ears may provide a potentially informative and novel index of hearing loss. This is an initial step toward utilizing OAE source in characterizing cochlear function and dysfunction.

  15. The Gaia scientific exploitation networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Figueras, F.; Jordi, C.

    2015-05-01

    On July 2014 the Gaia satellite, placed at L2 since January 2014, finished their commissioning phase and started collecting high accurate scientific data. New and more realistic estimations of the astrometric, photometric and spectroscopic accuracy expected after five years mission operation (2014-2019) have been recently published in the Gaia Science Performance Web page. Here we present the coordination efforts and the activities being conducted through the two GREAT (Gaia Research for European Astronomy Training) European Networks, the GREAT-ESF, a programme supported by the European Science Foundation (2010-2015), and the GREAT-ITN network, from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (2011-2015). The main research theme of these networks is to unravel the origin and history of our home galaxy. Emphasis is placed on the research projects being conducted by the Spanish Researchers through these networks, well coordinated by the Red Española de Explotación Científica de Gaia (REG network, with more than 140 participants). Members of the REG play an important role on the collection of complementary spectroscopic data from ground based telescopes, on the development of new tools for an optimal scientific exploitation of Gaia data and on the preparation task to create the Gaia archive.

  16. Exploiting scientific advances. Philip Russell.

    PubMed

    1992-04-01

    The Children's Vaccine Initiative (CVI) will hopefully accelerate the vaccine development process, make it more efficient, and produce new and better vaccines which will prevent most, if not all, of today's preventable diseases which lead to childhood mortality. The technology exists, but has simply not been exploited. Many exciting approaches to vaccine development never advance beyond the product development stage because, until now, there has been no mechanism for overseeing the entire process from the initial conception of a vaccine in the laboratory to its development by industry and its incorporation into vaccine programs. The CVI, however, has been established to provide such oversight and to coordinate the process. Recently developed technologies which could advance the attainment of CVI goals are the microencapsulation process and the use of live viral or attenuated bacterial vectors, genetically engineered to express desired vaccine antigen structures and induce immunity to specific infectious agents. The scientific obstacles are simply challenges which can be overcome. However, for the CVI to achieve its goals, it requires both adequate public sector resources and the collaboration of private industry. PMID:12321835

  17. Two questions about surrogacy and exploitation.

    PubMed

    Wertheimer, Alan

    1992-01-01

    In this article I will consider two related questions about surrogacy and exploitation: (1) Is surrogacy exploitative? (2) If surrogacy is exploitative, what is the moral force of this exploitation? Briefly stated, I shall argue that whether surrogacy is exploitative depends on whether exploitation must be harmful to the exploited party or whether (as I think) there can be mutually advantageous exploitation. It also depends on some facts about surrogacy about which we have little reliable evidence and on our philosophical view on what counts as a harm to the surrogate. Our answer to the second question will turn in part on the account of exploitation we invoke in answering the first question and in part on the way in which we resolve some other questions about the justification of state interference. I shall suggest, however, that if surrogacy is a form of voluntary and mutually advantageous exploitation, then there is a strong presumption that surrogacy contracts should be permitted and even enforceable, although that presumption may be overridden on other grounds. PMID:11652070

  18. Identification of multilocus genetic heterogeneity in Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale and its restriction following tick-borne transmission.

    PubMed

    Herndon, David R; Ueti, Massaro W; Reif, Kathryn E; Noh, Susan M; Brayton, Kelly A; Agnes, Joseph T; Palmer, Guy H

    2013-05-01

    Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale was the first vaccine used to protect against a rickettsial disease and is still in widespread use a century later. As its use preceded development of either cryopreservation or cell culture, the vaccine strain was maintained for decades by sequential passage among donor animals, excluding the natural tick-borne transmission cycle that provides a selective pressure or population "bottleneck." We demonstrated that the vaccine strain is genetically heterogeneous at 46 chromosomal loci and that heterogeneity was maintained upon inoculation into recipient animals. The number of variants per site ranged from 2 to 11 with a mean of 2.8/locus and a mode and median of 2/locus; variants included single-nucleotide polymorphisms, insertions/deletions, polynucleotide tracts, and different numbers of perfect repeats. The genetic heterogeneity is highly unlikely to be a result of strain contamination based on analysis using a panel of eight gene markers with a high power for strain discrimination. In contrast, heterogeneity appears to be a result of genetic drift in the absence of the restriction of tick passage. Heterogeneity could be reduced following tick passage, and the reduced heterogeneity could be maintained in sequential intravenous and tick-borne passages. The reduction in vaccine strain heterogeneity following tick passage did not confer an enhanced transmission phenotype, indicating that a stochastically determined population bottleneck was likely responsible as opposed to a positive selective pressure. These findings demonstrate the plasticity of an otherwise highly constrained genome and highlight the role of natural transmission cycles in shaping and maintaining the bacterial genome. PMID:23509140

  19. Identification of Multilocus Genetic Heterogeneity in Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale and Its Restriction following Tick-Borne Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Herndon, David R.; Ueti, Massaro W.; Reif, Kathryn E.; Noh, Susan M.; Brayton, Kelly A.; Agnes, Joseph T.

    2013-01-01

    Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale was the first vaccine used to protect against a rickettsial disease and is still in widespread use a century later. As its use preceded development of either cryopreservation or cell culture, the vaccine strain was maintained for decades by sequential passage among donor animals, excluding the natural tick-borne transmission cycle that provides a selective pressure or population “bottleneck.” We demonstrated that the vaccine strain is genetically heterogeneous at 46 chromosomal loci and that heterogeneity was maintained upon inoculation into recipient animals. The number of variants per site ranged from 2 to 11 with a mean of 2.8/locus and a mode and median of 2/locus; variants included single-nucleotide polymorphisms, insertions/deletions, polynucleotide tracts, and different numbers of perfect repeats. The genetic heterogeneity is highly unlikely to be a result of strain contamination based on analysis using a panel of eight gene markers with a high power for strain discrimination. In contrast, heterogeneity appears to be a result of genetic drift in the absence of the restriction of tick passage. Heterogeneity could be reduced following tick passage, and the reduced heterogeneity could be maintained in sequential intravenous and tick-borne passages. The reduction in vaccine strain heterogeneity following tick passage did not confer an enhanced transmission phenotype, indicating that a stochastically determined population bottleneck was likely responsible as opposed to a positive selective pressure. These findings demonstrate the plasticity of an otherwise highly constrained genome and highlight the role of natural transmission cycles in shaping and maintaining the bacterial genome. PMID:23509140

  20. Biased Immunoglobulin G1 Isotype Responses Induced in Cattle with DNA Expressing msp1a of Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    Arulkanthan, Appudurai; Brown, Wendy C.; McGuire, Travis C.; Knowles, Donald P.

    1999-01-01

    Immunization with the native major surface protein 1 (MSP1) (a heterodimer containing disulfide and noncovalently bonded polypeptides designated MSP1a and MSP1b) of the erythrocytic stage of Anaplasma marginale conferred protection against homologous challenge (G. H. Palmer, A. F. Barbet, W. C. Davis, and T. C. McGuire, Science 231:1299–1302, 1986). The MSP1a polypeptide possesses a conserved neutralization-sensitive epitope. In the present study, the immune response to DNA-mediated immunization using msp1a was studied. The plasmid pVCL/MSP1a, which encodes the complete msp1a gene of A. marginale under the control of human cytomegalovirus immediate-early enhancer/promoter and intron A, was constructed. The immune responses elicited by immunization with pVCL/MSP1a into cardiotoxin-induced regenerating muscle were evaluated in mice and cattle. Antibody reactive with native MSP1a was detected in pooled sera of immunized BALB/c mice 3 weeks following primary immunization. Two calves seronegative for A. marginale were immunized four times, at weeks 0, 3, 7, and 13, with pVCL/MSP1a. By 8 weeks, both calves responded to MSP1a with an antibody titer of 1:100, which peaked at 1:1,600 and 1:800 by 16 weeks after the initial immunization. Interestingly, immunoblotting with anti-immunoglobulin G1 (anti-IgG1) and anti-IgG2 specific monoclonal antibodies revealed a restricted IgG1 anti-MSP1a response in both animals. T-lymphocyte lines, established after the fourth immunization, proliferated specifically against A. marginale homogenate and purified MSP1 in a dose-dependent manner. These data provide a basis for an immunization strategy to direct bovine immune responses by using DNA vaccine vectors containing single or multiple genes encoding major surface proteins of A. marginale. PMID:10377129

  1. Development of a multilocus sequence typing scheme for the study of Anaplasma marginale population structure over space and time.

    PubMed

    Guillemi, Eliana C; Ruybal, Paula; Lia, Verónica; Gonzalez, Sergio; Lew, Sergio; Zimmer, Patricia; Lopez Arias, Ludmila; Rodriguez, Jose L; Rodriguez, Sonia Y; Frutos, Roger; Wilkowsky, Silvina E; Farber, Marisa D

    2015-03-01

    Bovine Anaplasmosis caused by Anaplasma marginale is a worldwide disease prevalent in tropical and subtropical regions where Rhipicephalus microplus is considered the most significant biological vector. Molecular markers previously applied for A. marginale typing are efficient for isolate discrimination but they are not a suitable tool for studying population structure and dynamics. Here we report the development of an MLST scheme based on the study of seven genes: dnaA, ftsZ, groEl, lipA, recA, secY and sucB. Five annotated genomes (Saint Maries, Florida, Mississippi, Puerto Rico and Virginia) and 53 bovine blood samples from different world regions were analyzed. High nucleotide diversity and a large proportion of synonymous substitutions, indicative of negative selection resulted from DnaSP 5.00.02 package application. Recombination events were detected in almost all genes, this evidence together with the coexistence of more than one A. marginale strain in the same sample might suggest the superinfection phenomena as a potential source of variation. The allelic profile analysis performed through GoeBURST shown two main CC that did not support geography. In addition, the AMOVA test confirmed the occurrence of at least two main genetically divergent groups. The composition of the emergent groups reflected the impact of both historical and environmental traits on A. marginale population structure. Finally, a web-based platform "Galaxy MLST-Pipeline" was developed to automate DNA sequence editing and data analysis that together with the Data Base are freely available to users. The A. marginale MLST scheme developed here is a valuable tool with a high discrimination power, besides PCR based strategies are still the better choice for epidemiological intracellular pathogens studies. Finally, the allelic profile describe herein would contribute to uncover the mechanisms in how intracellular pathogens challenge virulence paradigm. PMID:25550150

  2. Identification of a vertically transmitted strain from Anaplasma marginale (UFMG3): Molecular and phylogenetic characterization, and evaluation of virulence.

    PubMed

    Silvestre, Bruna T; Silveira, Júlia A G; Meneses, Rodrigo M; Facury-Filho, Elias J; Carvalho, Antônio U; Ribeiro, Múcio F B

    2016-02-01

    Bovine anaplasmosis is a disease caused by the intraerythrocytic rickettsia species Anaplasma marginale and results in great economic losses in tropical and subtropical regions. Vertical transmission is an important phenomenon that contributes to the persistence of different strains of the agent within the same herd. The identification of new strains and genetic characterization studies are essential to understanding their epidemiology and virulence and for vaccine development. The aim of this study was to perform molecular and phylogenetic characterizations of a new vertically transmitted strain from A. marginale and to evaluate its virulence by experimental inoculation of rickettsia-free calves. Thirty newborn Holstein calves were subjected to molecular tests for the detection of A. marginale, Babesia bovis and Babesia bigemina. Calves positive for A. marginale (n=3) were splenectomized and monitored for the clinical manifestations of anaplasmosis. Blood samples from one of the calves that presented rickettsemia of 42.8% and spontaneous recovery of clinical parameters were used for molecular and phylogenetic characterization (msp1a gene), and inoculum production was used for the evaluation of virulence. This strain was identified as UFMG3. Three tandem repeat forms (13 and MGI19) were identified from the analysis of the msp1a gene, in which the form MGI19 appeared twice. Analysis of these repeats revealed the presence of the sequences QASTSS and SSASGQQQESS and of aspartic acid (D) at position 20 of both repeats. Phylogenetic analysis showed a close relationship among the UFMG3, MGI19 and UFMG2 strains. For virulence evaluation, six Holstein calves were inoculated intravenously with 2×10(7)A. marginale UFMG3-infected erythrocytes. The calves showed maximum rickettsemia of 5.1%, a moderate decrease in packed cell volume and spontaneous recovery of clinical parameters without the need for treatment. The results of experimental inoculation suggest that the strain A

  3. A new quantitative PCR method for the detection of Anaplasma platys in dogs based on the citrate synthase gene.

    PubMed

    da Silva, Claudia B; Pires, Marcus S; Vilela, Joice A R; Peckle, Maristela; da Costa, Renata L; Vitari, Gabriela L V; Santos, Leandro A; Santos, Huarrisson A; Massard, Carlos L

    2016-09-01

    Anaplasma platys is an obligate intracellular bacterium that primarily affects dogs, but it can also infect humans. Our study aimed to standardize a quantitative real-time (q)PCR method using the citrate synthase gene (gltA) as a specific target for A. platys detection in naturally infected dogs. Primers (gltA84F and gltA84R) and probe (PLATYSp) were designed to amplify an 84-bp fragment based on the gltA gene sequences of A. platys available in GenBank. A total of 186 dog blood samples originating from the Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro were tested by qPCR. Additionally, the same samples were tested by cytology and a nested (n)PCR that targeted the 16S ribosomal DNA to determine the performance of our qPCR method compared to these existing techniques. Among the samples tested with qPCR, 17.2% were considered positive, significantly more than detected by nPCR (14.0%). Under optical microscopy, inclusions were observed in platelets of 25.3% of the samples, and among these samples, only 33.9% were identified as positive for A. platys using qPCR. The qPCR technique proved to be more specific than cytology and to have superior sensitivity to nPCR for detecting A. platys in dogs. The development of this new qPCR method contributes to the advancement of research involving A. platys Furthermore, it can be used to quantify the presence of this bacterium to evaluate the treatment of infected animals, or even as a more sensitive and specific tool for situations indicating possible clinical disease but with negative cytology. PMID:27423737

  4. Cattle experimentally infected by Anaplasma marginale: Influence of splenectomy on disease pathogenesis, oxidative profile, and antioxidant status.

    PubMed

    Doyle, Rovaina L; França, Raqueli T; Oliveira, Camila B; Rezer, João F P; Klafke, Guilherme M; Martins, João R; Santos, Andrea P; do Nascimento, Naíla C; Mesick, Joanne B; Lopes, Sonia T A; Leal, Daniela B R; Da Silva, Aleksandro S; Andrade, Cinthia M

    2016-06-01

    Bovine anaplasmosis is caused by the obligate intraerythrocytic bacteria Anaplasma marginale. These bacteria are transmitted by tick species such as Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, blood-sucking insects, and fomites (needles, clippers, and other blood contaminated equipment). During the acute phase of infection, animals may develop fever, anemia, jaundice, and hepatosplenomegaly. The aims of this study are to quantify the bacteremia by quantitative PCR in eight naïve calves experimentally infected by A. marginale [splenectomized (n = 4), and intact/non-splenectomized (n = 4)], and to correlate these findings with markers of oxidative stress on days 0, 8, 15, 21 and 23 post-infection. Complete blood counts (CBC) were performed in both groups. Lipid peroxidation was estimated by quantifying thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS); and non-enzymatic antioxidants were assessed by erythrocyte content of non-protein thiols (NPSH). There were no significant differences in complete blood counts (CBC) between the two groups. However, both groups had a slight decrease on packet cell volume (PCV), erythrocytes and hemoglobin concentration, as well as an increase in total leukocyte counts due to elevated lymphocytes when comparing pre and post-infection with A. marginale. Progressive increase on TBARS levels and concomitant decrease on NPSH content were observed in all animals, without significant differences between splenectomized and intact animals. A positive correlation between bacteremia and TBARS, and a negative correlation between bacteremia and NPSH were observed in both groups with higher correlation for NPSH in splenectomized animals. A negative correlation between TBARS and NPSH levels was observed in both groups indicating lipid peroxidation without a non-enzymatic antioxidant response. The results of experimental infection by A. marginale in cattle showed that bacteremia has an impact on lipid peroxidation regardless of the splenectomy. PMID

  5. Loss of immunization-induced epitope-specific CD4 T-cell response following anaplasma marginale infection requires presence of the T-cell epitope on the pathogen and is not associated with an increase in lymphocytes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We have shown that in cattle previously immunized with outer membrane proteins, infection with Anaplasma marginale induces a functionally exhausted CD4 T-cell response to the A. marginale immunogen. Furthermore, T-cell responses following infection in nonimmunized cattle had a delayed onset and were...

  6. Evaluation of the immune response to Anaplasma marginale MSP5 protein using a HSV-1 amplicon vector system or recombinant protein.

    PubMed

    Palacios, Carlos; Torioni de Echaide, Susana; Mattion, Nora

    2014-12-01

    Anaplasma marginale is an intraerythrocytic vector-borne infectious agent of cattle. Immunization with the current vaccine, based on parasitized erythrocytes with live Anaplasma centrale, shows some constraints and confers partial protection, suggesting the feasibility for the development of new generation of vaccines. The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of sequential immunization of BALB/c mice, with herpesvirus amplicon vector-based vaccines combined with protein-based vaccines, on the quality of the immune response against the major surface protein 5 of A. marginale. The highest antibody titers against MSP5 were elicited in mice that received two doses of adjuvanted recombinant protein (p < 0.0001). Mice treated with a heterologous prime-boost strategy generated sustained antibody titers at least up to 200 days, and a higher specific cellular response. The results presented here showed that sequential immunization with HSV-based vectors and purified antigen enhances the quality of the immune response against A. marginale. PMID:25458492

  7. Interviewing Child Victims of Sexual Exploitation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spaulding, William

    The interviewing of the child victim of sexual exploitation is one of the first and most important steps in solving and prosecuting a case of child exploitation and is the topic of this document. The first chapter discusses the interviewer's role, focusing on improving communication, dealing with emotion, the interviewer's response, male or female…

  8. The exploitation of Gestalt principles by magicians.

    PubMed

    Barnhart, Anthony S

    2010-01-01

    Magicians exploit a host of psychological principles in deceiving their audiences. Psychologists have recently attempted to pinpoint the most common psychological tendencies exploited by magicians. This paper highlights two co-occurring principles that appear to be the basis for many popular magic tricks: accidental alignment and good continuation. PMID:21125955

  9. A New Measure of Interpersonal Exploitativeness

    PubMed Central

    Brunell, Amy B.; Davis, Mark S.; Schley, Dan R.; Eng, Abbey L.; van Dulmen, Manfred H.M.; Wester, Kelly L.; Flannery, Daniel J.

    2013-01-01

    Measures of exploitativeness evidence problems with validity and reliability. The present set of studies assessed a new measure [the Interpersonal Exploitativeness Scale (IES)] that defines exploitativeness in terms of reciprocity. In Studies 1 and 2, 33 items were administered to participants. Exploratory and Confirmatory Factor Analysis demonstrated that a single factor consisting of six items adequately assess interpersonal exploitativeness. Study 3 results revealed that the IES was positively associated with “normal” narcissism, pathological narcissism, psychological entitlement, and negative reciprocity and negatively correlated with positive reciprocity. In Study 4, participants competed in a commons dilemma. Those who scored higher on the IES were more likely to harvest a greater share of resources over time, even while controlling for other relevant variables, such as entitlement. Together, these studies show the IES to be a valid and reliable measure of interpersonal exploitativeness. The authors discuss the implications of these studies. PMID:23755031

  10. Financial exploitation, financial capacity, and Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Lichtenberg, Peter A

    2016-01-01

    Research in the past decade has documented that financial exploitation of older adults has become a major problem, and psychology is only recently increasing its presence in efforts to reduce exploitation. During the same time period, psychology has been a leader in setting best practices for the assessment of diminished capacity in older adults culminating in the 2008 American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging and American Psychological Association (ABA/APA) joint publication on a handbook for psychologists. Assessment of financial decision-making capacity is often the cornerstone assessment needed in cases of financial exploitation. This article will examine the intersection of financial exploitation and decision-making capacity and introduce a new conceptual model and new tools for both the investigation and prevention of financial exploitation. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27159438

  11. Global Climate Responses to Anthropogenic Groundwater Exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Y.; Xie, Z.

    2015-12-01

    In this study, a groundwater exploitation scheme is incorporated into the earth system model, Community Earth System Model 1.2.0 (CESM1.2.0), which is called CESM1.2_GW, and the climatic responses to anthropogenic groundwater withdrawal are then investigated on global scale. The scheme models anthropogenic groundwater exploitation and consumption, which are then divided into agricultural irrigation, industrial use and domestic use. A group of 41-year ensemble groundwater exploitation simulations with six different initial conditions, and a group of ensemble control simulations without exploitation are conducted using the developed model CESM1.2_GW with water supplies and demands estimated. The results reveal that the groundwater exploitation and water consumption cause drying effects on soil moisture in deep layers and wetting effects in upper layers, along with a rapidly declining groundwater table in Central US, Haihe River Basin in China and Northern India and Pakistan where groundwater extraction are most severe in the world. The atmosphere also responds to anthropogenic groundwater exploitation. Cooling effects on lower troposphere appear in large areas of North China Plain and of Northern India and Pakistan. Increased precipitation occurs in Haihe River Basin due to increased evapotranspiration from irrigation. Decreased precipitation occurs in Northern India because water vapor here is taken away by monsoon anomalies induced by anthropogenic alteration of groundwater. The local reducing effects of anthropogenic groundwater exploitation on total terrestrial water storage evinces that water resource is unsustainable with the current high exploitation rate. Therefore, a balance between slow groundwater withdrawal and rapid human economic development must be achieved to maintain a sustainable water resource, especially in over-exploitation regions such as Central US, Northern China, India and Pakistan.

  12. Differential expression of genes in salivary glands of male Rhipicephalus (Boophilus)microplus in response to infection with Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Bovine anaplasmosis, caused by the rickettsial tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma marginale (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae), is vectored by Rhipicephalus (Boophilus)microplus in many tropical and subtropical regions of the world. A. marginale undergoes a complex developmental cycle in ticks which results in infection of salivary glands from where the pathogen is transmitted to cattle. In previous studies, we reported modification of gene expression in Dermacentor variabilis and cultured Ixodes scapularis tick cells in response to infection with A. marginale. In these studies, we extended these findings by use of a functional genomics approach to identify genes differentially expressed in R. microplus male salivary glands in response to A. marginale infection. Additionally, a R. microplus-derived cell line, BME26, was used for the first time to also study tick cell gene expression in response to A. marginale infection. Results Suppression subtractive hybridization libraries were constructed from infected and uninfected ticks and used to identify genes differentially expressed in male R. microplus salivary glands infected with A. marginale. A total of 279 ESTs were identified as candidate differentially expressed genes. Of these, five genes encoding for putative histamine-binding protein (22Hbp), von Willebrand factor (94Will), flagelliform silk protein (100Silk), Kunitz-like protease inhibitor precursor (108Kunz) and proline-rich protein BstNI subfamily 3 precursor (7BstNI3) were confirmed by real-time RT-PCR to be down-regulated in tick salivary glands infected with A. marginale. The impact of selected tick genes on A. marginale infections in tick salivary glands and BME26 cells was characterized by RNA interference. Silencing of the gene encoding for putative flagelliform silk protein (100Silk) resulted in reduced A. marginale infection in both tick salivary glands and cultured BME26 cells, while silencing of the gene encoding for subolesin (4D8

  13. Evidence of the Importance of Host Habitat Use in Predicting the Dilution Effect of Wild Boar for Deer Exposure to Anaplasma spp

    PubMed Central

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Acevedo, Pelayo; Ruiz-Fons, Francisco; Gortázar, Christian; de la Fuente, José

    2008-01-01

    Foci of tick-borne pathogens occur at fine spatial scales, and depend upon a complex arrangement of factors involving climate, host abundance and landscape composition. It has been proposed that the presence of hosts that support tick feeding but not pathogen multiplication may dilute the transmission of the pathogen. However, models need to consider the spatial component to adequately explain how hosts, ticks and pathogens are distributed into the landscape. In this study, a novel, lattice-derived, behavior-based, spatially-explicit model was developed to test how changes in the assumed perception of different landscape elements affect the outcome of the connectivity between patches and therefore the dilution effect. The objective of this study was to explain changes in the exposure rate (ER) of red deer to Anaplasma spp. under different configurations of suitable habitat and landscape fragmentation in the presence of variable densities of the potentially diluting host, wild boar. The model showed that the increase in habitat fragmentation had a deep impact on Habitat Sharing Ratio (HSR), a parameter describing the amount of habitat shared by red deer and wild boar, weighted by the probability of the animals to remain together in the same patch (according to movement rules), the density of ticks and the density of animals at a given vegetation patch, and decreased the dilution effect of wild boar on deer Anaplasma ER. The model was validated with data collected on deer, wild boar and tick densities, climate, landscape composition, host vegetation preferences and deer seropositivity to Anaplasma spp. (as a measure of ER) in 10 study sites in Spain. However, although conditions were appropriate for a dilution effect, empirical results did not show a decrease in deer ER in sites with high wild boar densities. The model showed that the HSR was the most effective parameter to explain the absence of the dilution effect. These results suggest that host habitat usage may

  14. Phylogeographic analysis reveals association of tick-borne pathogen, Anaplasma marginale, MSP1a sequences with ecological traits affecting tick vector performance

    PubMed Central

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Naranjo, Victoria; Acevedo-Whitehouse, Karina; Mangold, Atilio J; Kocan, Katherine M; de la Fuente, José

    2009-01-01

    Background The tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma marginale, which is endemic worldwide, is the type species of the genus Anaplasma (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae). Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus is the most important tick vector of A. marginale in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Despite extensive characterization of the genetic diversity in A. marginale geographic strains using major surface protein sequences, little is known about the biogeography and evolution of A. marginale and other Anaplasma species. For A. marginale, MSP1a was shown to be involved in vector-pathogen and host-pathogen interactions and to have evolved under positive selection pressure. The MSP1a of A. marginale strains differs in molecular weight because of a variable number of tandem 23-31 amino acid repeats and has proven to be a stable marker of strain identity. While phylogenetic studies of MSP1a repeat sequences have shown evidence of A. marginale-tick co-evolution, these studies have not provided phylogeographic information on a global scale because of the high level of MSP1a genetic diversity among geographic strains. Results In this study we showed that the phylogeography of A. marginale MSP1a sequences is associated with world ecological regions (ecoregions) resulting in different evolutionary pressures and thence MSP1a sequences. The results demonstrated that the MSP1a first (R1) and last (RL) repeats and microsatellite sequences were associated with world ecoregion clusters with specific and different environmental envelopes. The evolution of R1 repeat sequences was found to be under positive selection. It is hypothesized that the driving environmental factors regulating tick populations could act on the selection of different A. marginale MSP1a sequence lineages, associated to each ecoregion. Conclusion The results reported herein provided the first evidence that the evolution of A. marginale was linked to ecological traits affecting tick vector performance. These

  15. Organ sales: exploitative at any price?

    PubMed

    Lawlor, Rob

    2014-05-01

    In many cases, claims that a transaction is exploitative will focus on the details of the transaction, such as the price paid or conditions. For example, in a claim that a worker is exploited, the grounds for the claim are usually that the pay is not sufficient or the working conditions too dangerous. In some cases, however, the claim that a transaction is exploitative is not seen to rely on these finer details. Many, for example, claim that organ sales would be exploitative, in a way that doesn't seem to depend on the details. This article considers, but ultimately rejects, a number of arguments which could be used to defend this sort of claim. PMID:23025892

  16. Exploitation of Children Widespread, ILO Reports.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kucherov, Tanya

    1980-01-01

    Reports that nearly 55 million children under age 15 are working in violation of labor standards. Discusses industries in which child labor is common, effects on children's safety and health, and social and economic causes of exploitation. (SK)

  17. Exploitations and their complications: the necessity of identifying the multiple forms of exploitation in pharmaceutical trials.

    PubMed

    Snyder, Jeremy

    2012-06-01

    Human subject trials of pharmaceuticals in low and middle income countries (LMICs) have been associated with the moral wrong of exploitation on two grounds. First, these trials may include a placebo control arm even when proven treatments for a condition are in use in other (usually wealthier) parts of the world. Second, the trial researchers or sponsors may fail to make a successful treatment developed through the trial available to either the trial participants or the host community following the trial. Many commentators have argued that a single form of exploitation takes place during human subject research in LMICs. These commentators do not, however, agree as to what kind of moral wrong exploitation is or when exploitation is morally impermissible. In this paper, I have two primary goals. First, I will argue for a taxonomy of exploitation that identifies three distinct forms of exploitation. While each of these forms of exploitation has its critics, I will argue that they can each be developed into plausible accounts of exploitation tied to different vulnerabilities and different forms of wrongdoing. Second, I will argue that each of these forms of exploitation can coexist in single situations, including human subject trials of pharmaceuticals. This lesson is important, since different forms of exploitation in a single relationship can influence, among other things, whether the relationship is morally permissible. PMID:21039692

  18. Development and assessment of a latex agglutination test based on recombinant MSP5 to detect antibodies against Anaplasma marginale in cattle

    PubMed Central

    Ramos, Carlos A.N.; Araújo, Flábio R.; Santos, Rafaelle C.; Melo, Elaine S.P.; Sousa, Letícia C.; Vidal, Carlos E.S.; Guerra, Neurisvan R.; Ramos, Rafael A.N.

    2014-01-01

    The recombinant protein MSP5 has been established as an important antigen for serological diagnosis of Anaplasma marginale by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). However, due to the high cost of specialized equipment, this technique is not accessible to all laboratories, especially in developing countries in areas where the disease is endemic. The present study describes the standardization of a latex agglutination test (LAT) to detect antibodies against A. marginale based on recombinant MSP5. Compared with indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (iELISA), the relative sensitivity and specificity of the LAT were 95.21% and 91.86% respectively, with an almost perfect agreement between tests (kappa index = 0.863). These results can be considered important for the serological diagnosis of A. marginale, as they indicate that the test represents a rapid and low cost alternative to ELISA. PMID:24948931

  19. Active surveillance of Anaplasma marginale in populations of arthropod vectors (Acari: Ixodidae; Diptera: Tabanidae) during and after an outbreak of bovine anaplasmosis in southern Manitoba, Canada.

    PubMed

    Yunik, Matthew E M; Galloway, Terry D; Lindsay, L Robbin

    2016-04-01

    Bovine anaplasmosis is the disease caused by the bacterium Anaplasma marginale. It can cause production loss and death in cattle and bison. This was a reportable disease in Canada until April 2014. Before then, infected herds were quarantined and culled, removing infected animals. In North America, A. marginale is biologically vectored by hard ticks (Acari: Ixodidae), Dermacentor variabilis and D. andersoni. Biting flies, particularly horse flies (Diptera: Tabanidae), can also act as mechanical vectors. An outbreak of bovine anaplasmosis, consisting of 14 herds, was detected in southern Manitoba in 2008. This outbreak lasted multiple rounds of testing and culling before eradication in 2011, suggesting local maintenance of the pathogen was occurring. We applied novel approaches to examine the vector ecology of this disease in this region. We did not detect A. marginale by screening of 2056 D. variabilis (2011 and 2012) and 520 horse flies (2011) using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). PMID:27127345

  20. Characterization of an immunoprotective protein complex of Anaplasma marginale by cloning and expression of the gene coding for polypeptide Am105L.

    PubMed Central

    Barbet, A F; Palmer, G H; Myler, P J; McGuire, T C

    1987-01-01

    Immunization with an Anaplasma marginale surface protein complex containing two polypeptides (Am105U and Am105L), each having a molecular weight of 105,000, protected cattle against challenge with virulent organisms. These polypeptides were immunoprecipitated together from detergent extracts of A. marginale by a neutralizing monoclonal antibody. After surface radioiodination of intact parasites, both Am105U and Am105L contained the radiolabel. To define the structural and antigenic relationships between Am105U and Am105L and to determine individual efficacies as protective immunogens, we cloned and expressed A. marginale DNA in Escherichia coli. We identified recombinant bacteria which expressed a novel protein of 105,000 molecular weight as a major cellular component. The recombinant protein was structurally and antigenically homologous to Am105L. There were multiple, partially homologous copies of the cloned DNA sequence in the rickettsial genome. Images PMID:2443451

  1. Independence of Anaplasma marginale Strains with High and Low Transmission Efficiencies in the Tick Vector following Simultaneous Acquisition by Feeding on a Superinfected Mammalian Reservoir Host▿

    PubMed Central

    Galletti, Maria F. B. M.; Ueti, Massaro W.; Knowles, Donald P.; Brayton, Kelly A.; Palmer, Guy H.

    2009-01-01

    Strain superinfection occurs when a second pathogen strain infects a host already carrying a primary strain. Anaplasma marginale superinfection occurs when the second strain carries a variant repertoire different from that of the primary strain, and the epidemiologic consequences depend on the relative efficiencies of tick-borne transmission of the two strains. Following strain superinfection in the reservoir host, we tested whether the presence of two A. marginale (sensu lato) strains that differed in transmission efficiency altered the transmission phenotypes in comparison to those for single-strain infections. Dermacentor andersoni ticks were fed on animals superinfected with the Anaplasma marginale subsp. centrale vaccine strain (low transmission efficiency) and the A. marginale St. Maries strain (high transmission efficiency). Within ticks that acquired both strains, the St. Maries strain had a competitive advantage and replicated to significantly higher levels than the vaccine strain. The St. Maries strain was subsequently transmitted to naïve hosts by ticks previously fed either on superinfected animals or on animals singly infected with the St. Maries strain, consistent with the predicted transmission phenotype of this strain and the lack of interference due to the presence of a competing low-efficiency strain. The vaccine strain was not transmitted by either singly infected or coinfected ticks, consistent with the predicted transmission phenotype and the lack of enhancement due to the presence of a high-efficiency strain. These results support the idea that the strain predominance in regions of endemicity is mediated by the intrinsic transmission efficiency of specific strains regardless of occurrence of superinfection. PMID:19188360

  2. Exploitation in International Paid Surrogacy Arrangements

    PubMed Central

    Wilkinson, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Many critics have suggested that international paid surrogacy is exploitative. Taking such concerns as its starting point, this article asks: (1) how defensible is the claim that international paid surrogacy is exploitative and what could be done to make it less exploitative? (2) In the light of the answer to (1), how strong is the case for prohibiting it? Exploitation could in principle be dealt with by improving surrogates' pay and conditions. However, doing so may exacerbate problems with consent. Foremost amongst these is the argument that surrogates from economically disadvantaged countries cannot validly consent because their background circumstances are coercive. Several versions of this argument are examined and I conclude that at least one has some merit. The article's overall conclusion is that while ethically there is something to be concerned about, paid surrogacy is in no worse a position than many other exploitative commercial transactions which take place against a backdrop of global inequality and constrained options, such as poorly‐paid and dangerous construction work. Hence, there is little reason to single surrogacy out for special condemnation. On a policy level, the case for prohibiting international commercial surrogacy is weak, despite legitimate concerns about consent and background poverty. PMID:27471338

  3. Child Exploitation: Some Pieces of the Puzzle.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rohlader, Dorothy

    The report addresses the status in North Carolina and in the nation of child exploitation. Legislative and judicial backgrounds of child pornography and child prostitution are reviewed, and difficulties in obtaining statistical data are noted. Law enforcement issues in pornography are cited, and suggestions for further legislation regarding child…

  4. The World's Exploited Children: Growing Up Sadly.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knight, William James

    This monograph, fourth in a series on labor development, focuses on child exploitation in the context of child labor. The collection of papers briefly discusses (1) the relation between conditions of poverty and the prevalence of child labor in developing countries; (2) the lack of effectiveness of labor legislation in preventing child…

  5. User interface development for semiautomated imagery exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Connor, R. P.; Bohling, Edward H.

    1991-08-01

    Operational reconnaissance technical organizations are burdened by greatly increasing workloads due to expanding capabilities for collection and delivery of large-volume near-real- time multisensor/multispectral softcopy imagery. Related to the tasking of reconnaissance platforms to provide the imagery are more stringent timelines for exploiting the imagery in response to the rapidly changing threat environment being monitored. The development of a semi-automated softcopy multisensor image exploitation capability is a critical step toward integrating existing advanced image processing techniques in conjunction with appropriate intelligence and cartographic data for next-generation image exploitation systems. This paper discusses the results of a recent effort to develop computer-assisted aids for the image analyst (IA) in order to rapidly and accurately exploit multispectral/multisensor imagery in combination with intelligence support data and cartographic information for the purpose of target detection and identification. A key challenge of the effort was to design and implement an effective human-computer interface that would satisfy any generic IA task and readily accommodate the needs of a broad range of IAs.

  6. Geothermal energy exploitation in New Zealand

    SciTech Connect

    Elder, J.W.

    1980-01-01

    The essential factors, human and technical, which control the operation of geothermal systems, particularly those which allow prediction of behavior during and after exploitation, are sketched. The strategy and co-ordination involved in using New Zealand's geothermal resources for power production are considered. The broader aspects of the technical matters involved in the design of the parasitic plant reservoir system are described. (MHR)

  7. Trolling may intensify exploitation in crappie fisheries

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meals, K. O.; Dunn, A. W.; Miranda, Leandro E.

    2012-01-01

    In some parts of the USA, anglers targeting crappies Pomoxis spp. are transitioning from mostly stationary angling with a single pole around submerged structures to using multiple poles while drifting with the wind or under power. This shift in fishing methods could result in a change in catch efficiency, possibly increasing exploitation rates to levels that would be of concern to managers. We studied the catch statistics of anglers fishing while trolling with multiple poles (trollers) and those fishing with single poles (polers) in Mississippi reservoirs. Specifically, we tested whether (1) various catch statistics differed between trollers and polers, (2) catch rates of trollers were related to the number of poles fished, and (3) trollers could raise exploitation rates to potentially unsustainable levels. Results showed that participation in the crappie fisheries was about equally split between polers and trollers. In spring, 90% of crappie anglers were polers; in summer, 85% of crappie anglers were trollers. The size of harvested crappies was similar for the two angler groups, but the catch per hour was almost three times higher for trollers than for polers. Catch rates by trollers were directly correlated to the number of poles fished, although the relationship flattened as the number of poles increased. The average harvest rate for one troller fishing with three poles was similar to the harvest rate obtained by one poler. Simulations predicted that at the existing mix of about 50% polers and 50% trollers and with no restrictions on the number of poles used by trollers, exploitation of crappies is about 1.3 times higher than that in a polers-only fishery; under a scenario in which 100% of crappie anglers were trollers, exploitation was forecasted to increase to about 1.7 times the polers-only rate. The efficiency of trolling for crappies should be of concern to fishery managers because crappie fisheries are mostly consumptive and may increase exploitation

  8. Intelligence, mapping, and geospatial exploitation system (IMAGES)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moellman, Dennis E.; Cain, Joel M.

    1998-08-01

    This paper provides further detail to one facet of the battlespace visualization concept described in last year's paper Battlespace Situation Awareness for Force XXI. It focuses on the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) goal to 'provide customers seamless access to tailorable imagery, imagery intelligence, and geospatial information.' This paper describes Intelligence, Mapping, and Geospatial Exploitation System (IMAGES), an exploitation element capable of CONUS baseplant operations or field deployment to provide NIMA geospatial information collaboratively into a reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition (RSTA) environment through the United States Imagery and Geospatial Information System (USIGS). In a baseplant CONUS setting IMAGES could be used to produce foundation data to support mission planning. In the field it could be directly associated with a tactical sensor receiver or ground station (e.g. UAV or UGV) to provide near real-time and mission specific RSTA to support mission execution. This paper provides IMAGES functional level design; describes the technologies, their interactions and interdependencies; and presents a notional operational scenario to illustrate the system flexibility. Using as a system backbone an intelligent software agent technology, called Open Agent ArchitectureTM (OAATM), IMAGES combines multimodal data entry, natural language understanding, and perceptual and evidential reasoning for system management. Configured to be DII COE compliant, it would utilize, to the extent possible, COTS applications software for data management, processing, fusion, exploitation, and reporting. It would also be modular, scaleable, and reconfigurable. This paper describes how the OAATM achieves data synchronization and enables the necessary level of information to be rapidly available to various command echelons for making informed decisions. The reasoning component will provide for the best information to be developed in the timeline

  9. Exploiting host immunity: the Salmonella paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Behnsen, Judith; Perez-Lopez, Araceli; Nuccio, Sean-Paul; Raffatellu, Manuela

    2014-01-01

    Pathogens have evolved clever strategies to evade and in some cases exploit the attacks of an activated immune system. Salmonella enterica is one such pathogen, exploiting multiple aspects of host defense to promote its replication in the host. Here we review recent findings on the mechanisms by which Salmonella establishes systemic and chronic infection, including strategies involving manipulation of innate immune signaling and inflammatory forms of cell death, as well as immune evasion by establishing residency in M2 macrophages. We also examine recent evidence showing that the oxidative environment and the high levels of antimicrobial proteins produced in response to localized Salmonella gastrointestinal infection enable the pathogen to successfully outcompete the resident gut microbiota. PMID:25582038

  10. Exploiting Quantum Resonance to Solve Combinatorial Problems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zak, Michail; Fijany, Amir

    2006-01-01

    Quantum resonance would be exploited in a proposed quantum-computing approach to the solution of combinatorial optimization problems. In quantum computing in general, one takes advantage of the fact that an algorithm cannot be decoupled from the physical effects available to implement it. Prior approaches to quantum computing have involved exploitation of only a subset of known quantum physical effects, notably including parallelism and entanglement, but not including resonance. In the proposed approach, one would utilize the combinatorial properties of tensor-product decomposability of unitary evolution of many-particle quantum systems for physically simulating solutions to NP-complete problems (a class of problems that are intractable with respect to classical methods of computation). In this approach, reinforcement and selection of a desired solution would be executed by means of quantum resonance. Classes of NP-complete problems that are important in practice and could be solved by the proposed approach include planning, scheduling, search, and optimal design.

  11. Tribal children are most exploited - UNICEF.

    PubMed

    A workshop sponsored by the UN Children's Fund in the Philippines examined the status of the children of indigenous people and found that exploitation of the assets of indigenous people in the name of development has resulted in social inequalities that have damaged the indigenous children. As examples of the disregard for the human rights of the children, participants cited projects in Davao, Boracay, and Benguet that have displaced native children. These include mining schemes that have "raped" ancestral lands, large-scale agricultural enterprises, promotion of tourism, and creation of hydroelectric dams. The children rarely benefit at all from any of these projects as their families are moved from a position of isolated independence to one of exploited dependence. Social changes accompanying development ruin traditional culture without providing a better or even similar basis of existence. PMID:12348873

  12. Integrative mobile elements exploiting Xer recombination.

    PubMed

    Das, Bhabatosh; Martínez, Eriel; Midonet, Caroline; Barre, François-Xavier

    2013-01-01

    Integrative mobile genetic elements directly participate in the rapid response of bacteria to environmental challenges. They generally encode their own dedicated recombination machineries. CTXφ, a filamentous bacteriophage that harbors the genes encoding cholera toxin in Vibrio cholerae provided the first notable exception to this rule: it hijacks XerC and XerD, two chromosome-encoded tyrosine recombinases for lysogenic conversion. XerC and XerD are highly conserved in bacteria because of their role in the topological maintenance of circular chromosomes and, with the advent of high throughput sequencing, numerous other integrative mobile elements exploiting them have been discovered. Here, we review our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of integration of the different integrative mobile elements exploiting Xer (IMEXs) so far described. PMID:23127381

  13. Joint multisensor exploitation for mine detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaven, Scott G.; Stocker, Alan D.; Winter, Edwin M.

    2004-09-01

    Robust, timely, and remote detection of mines and minefields is central to both tactical and humanitarian demining efforts, yet remains elusive for single-sensor systems. Here we present an approach to jointly exploit multisensor data for detection of mines from remotely sensed imagery. LWIR, MWIR, laser, multispectral, and radar sensor have been applied individually to the mine detection and each has shown promise for supporting automated detection. However, none of these sources individually provides a full solution for automated mine detection under all expected mine, background and environmental conditions. Under support from Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate (NVESD) we have developed an approach that, through joint exploitation of multiple sensors, improves detection performance over that achieved from a single sensor. In this paper we describe the joint exploitation method, which is based on fundamental detection theoretic principles, demonstrate the strength of the approach on imagery from minefields, and discuss extensions of the method to additional sensing modalities. The approach uses pre-threshold anomaly detector outputs to formulate accurate models for marginal and joint statistics across multiple detection or sensor features. This joint decision space is modeled and decision boundaries are computed from measured statistics. Since the approach adapts the decision criteria based on the measured statistics and no prior target training information is used, it provides a robust multi-algorithm or multisensor detection statistic. Results from the joint exploitation processing using two different imaging sensors over surface mines acquired by NVESD will be presented to illustrate the process. The potential of the approach to incorporate additional sensor sources, such as radar, multispectral and hyperspectral imagery is also illustrated.

  14. DANDRUFF: THE MOST COMMERCIALLY EXPLOITED SKIN DISEASE

    PubMed Central

    Ranganathan, S; Mukhopadhyay, T

    2010-01-01

    The article discuss in detail about the prevalence, pathophysiology, clinical manifestations of dandruff including the etio-pathology. The article also discusses in detail about various treatment methods available for dandruff. The status of dandruff being amphibious – a disease/disorder, and relatively less medical intervention is sought after for the treatment, dandruff is the most commercially exploited skin and scalp disorder/disease by personal care industries. PMID:20606879

  15. SAIM: a mobile multisensor image exploitation system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devambez, Francois

    2000-11-01

    The control of information is an essential part of operations. Technology allows today a near real time surveillance capacity, over wide areas, due to sensor performances, communication networks. The system presented herein has been developed by Thomson-Csf, under contract with the French MOD to give to the decision makers the right information, in a very short delay, and prepare support information, to help for decision. The SAIM, Mobile Multisensor Image Exploitation Ground System, uses near real time acquisition units, very large data base management, data processing, including fusion and decision aiding tools, and communication networks. It then helps for all the steps of exploitation of data incoming from image sensors, form preparation of the reconnaissance mission to the dissemination of intelligence. The SAIM system is in operations in the French Air Force, and soon in the French Navy and the French Army. Initially defined for the specific use of French Recce sensors, the SAIM is now intended to be widely used for the exploitation of UAV and battle field MTI and SAR surveillance systems.

  16. Immunogenicity of Outer Membrane Proteins VirB9-1 and VirB9-2, a Novel Nanovaccine against Anaplasma marginale.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Liang; Mahony, Donna; Cavallaro, Antonino S; Zhang, Bing; Zhang, Jun; Deringer, James R; Zhao, Chun-Xia; Brown, Wendy C; Yu, Chengzhong; Mitter, Neena; Middelberg, Anton P J

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma marginale is the most prevalent tick-borne livestock pathogen and poses a significant threat to cattle industry. In contrast to currently available live blood-derived vaccines against A. marginale, alternative safer and better-defined subunit vaccines will be of great significance. Two proteins (VirB9-1 and VirB9-2) from the Type IV secretion system of A. marginale have been shown to induce humoral and cellular immunity. In this study, Escherichia coli were used to express VirB9-1 and VirB9-2 proteins. Silica vesicles having a thin wall of 6 nm and pore size of 5.8 nm were used as the carrier and adjuvant to deliver these two antigens both as individual or mixed nano-formulations. High loading capacity was achieved for both proteins, and the mouse immunisation trial with individual as well as mixed nano-formulations showed high levels of antibody titres over 107 and strong T-cell responses. The mixed nano-formulation also stimulated high-level recall responses in bovine T-cell proliferation assays. These results open a promising path towards the development of efficient A. marginale vaccines and provide better understanding on the role of silica vesicles to deliver multivalent vaccines as mixed nano-formulations able to activate both B-cell and T-cell immunity, for improved animal health. PMID:27115492

  17. Bacterial membranes enhance the immunogenicity and protective capacity of the surface exposed tick Subolesin-Anaplasma marginale MSP1a chimeric antigen.

    PubMed

    Contreras, Marinela; Moreno-Cid, Juan A; Domingos, Ana; Canales, Mario; Díez-Delgado, Iratxe; Pérez de la Lastra, José M; Sánchez, Emilio; Merino, Octávio; Zavala, Rigoberto López; Ayllón, Nieves; Boadella, Mariana; Villar, Margarita; Gortázar, Christian; de la Fuente, José

    2015-09-01

    Ticks are vectors of diseases that affect humans and animals worldwide. Tick vaccines have been proposed as a cost-effective and environmentally sound alternative for tick control. Recently, the Rhipicephalus microplus Subolesin (SUB)-Anaplasma marginale MSP1a chimeric antigen was produced in Escherichia coli as membrane-bound and exposed protein and used to protect vaccinated cattle against tick infestations. In this research, lipidomics and proteomics characterization of the E. coli membrane-bound SUB-MSP1a antigen showed the presence of components with potential adjuvant effect. Furthermore, vaccination with membrane-free SUB-MSP1a and bacterial membranes containing SUB-MSP1a showed that bacterial membranes enhance the immunogenicity of the SUB-MSP1a antigen in animal models. R. microplus female ticks were capillary-fed with sera from pigs orally immunized with membrane-free SUB, membrane bound SUB-MSP1a and saline control. Ticks ingested antibodies added to the blood meal and the effect of these antibodies on reduction of tick weight was shown for membrane bound SUB-MSP1a but not SUB when compared to control. Using the simple and cost-effective process developed for the purification of membrane-bound SUB-MSP1a, endotoxin levels were within limits accepted for recombinant vaccines. These results provide further support for the development of tick vaccines using E. coli membranes exposing chimeric antigens such as SUB-MSP1a. PMID:26219233

  18. The prevalence of Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma platys and Babesia spp. in dogs in Nueva Ecija, Philippines based on multiplex polymerase chain reaction (mPCR) assay.

    PubMed

    Corales, Joyce Marielle I; Viloria, Victoria V; Venturina, Virginia M; Mingala, Claro N

    2014-01-01

    The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma platys and Babesia spp. in dogs. It describes the practice of veterinarians in detecting tick-borne diseases in Nueva Ecija, Philippines. Seventy blood samples were collected and were subjected to multiplex PCR for the detection of E. canis, Babesia spp. and A. platys. The prevalence of babesiosis is the highest in Cabanatuan City (2/10), while a 10% prevalence (1/10) was observed in Science City of Muñoz, Talavera and Sta. Rosa. E. canis were only detected in Cabanatuan City. However, no anaplasmosis was detected in any area. The prevalence of babesiosis and ehrlichiosis in Nueva Ecija is 7.14% (5/70) and 2.85% (2/70) respectively. In addition, 70% (7/10) of the Nueva Ecija veterinary practitioners encountered cases of suspected ehrlichiosis in their practice. The diagnosis of ehrlichiosis is based primarily on presented clinical signs and complete blood counts, which include a platelet count. Of the 10 respondents, half utilized test kits while 90% interpreted blood samples. Meanwhile, only 60% of the respondents used an ELISA test kit for ehrlichiosis. For some practitioners, the main reason for not utilizing a kit is the high cost. None of the respondents had previously attended cases of suspected anaplasmosis. Only one respondent diagnosed a case of babesiosis by blood smear microscopy. PMID:25706424

  19. Infection with Ehrlichia canis and Anaplasma platys (Rickettsiales: Anaplasmataceae) in two lineages of Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato (Acari: Ixodidae) from Argentina.

    PubMed

    Cicuttin, Gabriel L; Tarragona, Evelina L; De Salvo, M Nazarena; Mangold, Atilio J; Nava, Santiago

    2015-09-01

    Natural infection with Ehrlichia canis and Anaplasma platys in ticks belonging to the tropical and temperate lineages of Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato from Argentina was evaluated. Samples were tested for Ehrlichia canis infection by PCR assays using 16S rRNA, dsb and p28 gene, while detection of A. platys was performed with 16S rRNA and groESL gene. The assignment of the ticks to each lineage was corroborated with 16S rDNA sequences. All ticks infected with E. canis and A. platys belonged to the tropical lineage. These results constitute the first record of E. canis infection in R. sanguineus s.l ticks from Argentina. No ticks from the temperate lineage were found to be infected with E. canis, coinciding with previous studies performed in Argentina and Uruguay where E. canis infection was not detected in R. sanguineus s.l from the temperate lineage. Because the presence of the tropical lineage of R. sanguineus s.l has been documented in tropical areas of northern Argentina between 22° and 24° of south latitude, the findings of this work indicate that transmission of E. canis and A. platys to dogs by R. sanguineus s.l probably occurs along this region. PMID:26100492

  20. Immunogenicity of Outer Membrane Proteins VirB9-1 and VirB9-2, a Novel Nanovaccine against Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    Cavallaro, Antonino S.; Zhang, Bing; Zhang, Jun; Deringer, James R.; Zhao, Chun-Xia; Brown, Wendy C.; Yu, Chengzhong; Mitter, Neena; Middelberg, Anton P. J.

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma marginale is the most prevalent tick-borne livestock pathogen and poses a significant threat to cattle industry. In contrast to currently available live blood-derived vaccines against A. marginale, alternative safer and better-defined subunit vaccines will be of great significance. Two proteins (VirB9-1 and VirB9-2) from the Type IV secretion system of A. marginale have been shown to induce humoral and cellular immunity. In this study, Escherichia coli were used to express VirB9-1 and VirB9-2 proteins. Silica vesicles having a thin wall of 6 nm and pore size of 5.8 nm were used as the carrier and adjuvant to deliver these two antigens both as individual or mixed nano-formulations. High loading capacity was achieved for both proteins, and the mouse immunisation trial with individual as well as mixed nano-formulations showed high levels of antibody titres over 107 and strong T-cell responses. The mixed nano-formulation also stimulated high-level recall responses in bovine T-cell proliferation assays. These results open a promising path towards the development of efficient A. marginale vaccines and provide better understanding on the role of silica vesicles to deliver multivalent vaccines as mixed nano-formulations able to activate both B-cell and T-cell immunity, for improved animal health. PMID:27115492

  1. Gaze interaction in UAS video exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hild, Jutta; Brüstle, Stefan; Heinze, Norbert; Peinsipp-Byma, Elisabeth

    2013-05-01

    A frequently occurring interaction task in UAS video exploitation is the marking or selection of objects of interest in the video. If an object of interest is visually detected by the image analyst, its selection/marking for further exploitation, documentation and communication with the team is a necessary task. Today object selection is usually performed by mouse interaction. As due to sensor motion all objects in the video move, object selection can be rather challenging, especially if strong and fast and ego-motions are present, e.g., with small airborne sensor platforms. In addition to that, objects of interest are sometimes too shortly visible to be selected by the analyst using mouse interaction. To address this issue we propose an eye tracker as input device for object selection. As the eye tracker continuously provides the gaze position of the analyst on the monitor, it is intuitive to use the gaze position for pointing at an object. The selection is then actuated by pressing a button. We integrated this gaze-based "gaze + key press" object selection into Fraunhofer IOSB's exploitation station ABUL using a Tobii X60 eye tracker and a standard keyboard for the button press. Representing the object selections in a spatial relational database, ABUL enables the image analyst to efficiently query the video data in a post processing step for selected objects of interest with respect to their geographical and other properties. An experimental evaluation is presented, comparing gaze-based interaction with mouse interaction in the context of object selection in UAS videos.

  2. Exploitation of subsea gas hydrate reservoirs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janicki, Georg; Schlüter, Stefan; Hennig, Torsten; Deerberg, Görge

    2016-04-01

    Natural gas hydrates are considered to be a potential energy resource in the future. They occur in permafrost areas as well as in subsea sediments and are stable at high pressure and low temperature conditions. According to estimations the amount of carbon bonded in natural gas hydrates worldwide is two times larger than in all known conventional fossil fuels. Besides technical challenges that have to be overcome climate and safety issues have to be considered before a commercial exploitation of such unconventional reservoirs. The potential of producing natural gas from subsea gas hydrate deposits by various means (e.g. depressurization and/or injection of carbon dioxide) is numerically studied in the frame of the German research project »SUGAR«. The basic mechanisms of gas hydrate formation/dissociation and heat and mass transport in porous media are considered and implemented into a numerical model. The physics of the process leads to strong non-linear couplings between hydraulic fluid flow, hydrate dissociation and formation, hydraulic properties of the sediment, partial pressures and seawater solution of components and the thermal budget of the system described by the heat equation. This paper is intended to provide an overview of the recent development regarding the production of natural gas from subsea gas hydrate reservoirs. It aims at giving a broad insight into natural gas hydrates and covering relevant aspects of the exploitation process. It is focused on the thermodynamic principles and technological approaches for the exploitation. The effects occurring during natural gas production within hydrate filled sediment layers are identified and discussed by means of numerical simulation results. The behaviour of relevant process parameters such as pressure, temperature and phase saturations is described and compared for different strategies. The simulations are complemented by calculations for different safety relevant problems.

  3. Molecular Detection of Tick-Borne Rickettsiales in Goats and Sheep from Southeastern China.

    PubMed

    Ge, Yan; Yin, Hongmei; Rikihisa, Yasuko; Pan, Weiqing; Yin, Hong

    2016-05-01

    Members from Rickettsiales such as Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and some spotted fever group (SFG) Rickettsiae are important tick-borne pathogens. One hundred goats and sheep from southeastern China were examined for the presence of Anaplasma, E. chaffeensis, and SFG Rickettsiae by PCR. A. phagocytophilum, Anaplasma bovis, and Anaplasma centrale were detected in 15, 49, and 16 samples, respectively. The A. phagocytophilum and A. centrale were highly homologous to strains from Japanese sika deer and Japanese cattle, respectively, whereas a diversity of A. bovis sequences were detected. New genetic variants of Anaplasma close to A. centrale have been revealed. No Ehrlichia was detected in this study. The presence of SFG Rickettsiae was determined in 26 samples. The coinfection with more than two pathogens tested in this study was as high as 29%. This study has molecularly characterized the circulation of Anaplasma and Rickettsiae in goats and sheep in southeastern China, which highlights the risk of contracting the pathogens upon tick exposure. PMID:26872274

  4. Exploration versus exploitation in polydomous ant colonies.

    PubMed

    Cook, Zoe; Franks, Daniel W; Robinson, Elva J H

    2013-04-21

    In socially foraging species resource information can be shared between individuals, increasing foraging success. In ant colonies, nestmate recruitment allows high exploitation rates at known resources however, to maximise foraging efficiency this must be balanced with searching for new resources. Many ant species form colonies inhabiting two or more spatially separated but socially connected nests: this type of organisation is known as polydomy. Polydomous colonies may benefit from increased foraging efficiency by carrying out dispersed-central place foraging. However, decentralisation of the colony may affect recruitment success by limiting interaction between ants based in separate nests. We use an agent-based model which compares the foraging success of monodomous and polydomous colonies in different food environments, incorporating recruitment through pheromone trails and group foraging. In contrast to previous results we show that polydomy is beneficial in some but not all cases. Polydomous colonies discover resources at a higher rate, making them more successful when food is highly dispersed, but their relative success can be lowered by limitations on recruitment success. Monodomous colonies can have higher foraging efficiency than polydomous colonies by exploiting food more rapidly. The results show the importance of interactions between recruitment strategy, colony size, and colony organisation. PMID:23380232

  5. Large size space construction for space exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kondyurin, Alexey

    2016-07-01

    Space exploitation is impossible without large space structures. We need to make sufficient large volume of pressurized protecting frames for crew, passengers, space processing equipment, & etc. We have to be unlimited in space. Now the size and mass of space constructions are limited by possibility of a launch vehicle. It limits our future in exploitation of space by humans and in development of space industry. Large-size space construction can be made with using of the curing technology of the fibers-filled composites and a reactionable matrix applied directly in free space. For curing the fabric impregnated with a liquid matrix (prepreg) is prepared in terrestrial conditions and shipped in a container to orbit. In due time the prepreg is unfolded by inflating. After polymerization reaction, the durable construction can be fitted out with air, apparatus and life support systems. Our experimental studies of the curing processes in the simulated free space environment showed that the curing of composite in free space is possible. The large-size space construction can be developed. A project of space station, Moon base, Mars base, mining station, interplanet space ship, telecommunication station, space observatory, space factory, antenna dish, radiation shield, solar sail is proposed and overviewed. The study was supported by Humboldt Foundation, ESA (contract 17083/03/NL/SFe), NASA program of the stratospheric balloons and RFBR grants (05-08-18277, 12-08-00970 and 14-08-96011).

  6. Exploiting Resistive Guiding for Fast Ignition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robinson, Alex

    2012-10-01

    Devising methods and schemes for controlling fast electron transport remains a major challenge in Fast Ignition research. Realistic estimates of the fast electron divergence angle require this control in order to ensure that the fast electron to hot spot coupling efficiency does not reach excessively low values. Resistivity gradients in the target will lead to strong magnetic field growth (via ∇ηxj) which can be exploited for the purposes of controlling the fast electron propagation (Robinson and Sherlock, PoP (2007)). There are a number of possible schemes which might be considered. Here we will report on numerical simulations that we have carried out on both simple configurations such as parabolic reflectors, and complex arrangements (Robinson, Key and Tabak, PRL (2012)). Substantial improvements to the fast electron to hot spot coupling efficiency have been found even for realistic fast electron divergence angles.

  7. Exploiting CRISPR/Cas systems for biotechnology

    PubMed Central

    Sampson, Timothy R.; Weiss, David S.

    2015-01-01

    The Cas9 endonuclease is the central component of the Type II CRISPR/Cas system, a prokaryotic adaptive restriction system against invading nucleic acids, such as those originating from bacteriophages and plasmids. Recently, this RNA-directed DNA endonuclease has been harnessed to target DNA sequences of interest. Here, we review the development of Cas9 as an important tool to not only edit the genomes of a number of different prokaryotic and eukaryotic species, but also as an efficient system for site-specific transcriptional repression or activation. Additionally, a specific Cas9 protein has been observed to target an RNA substrate, suggesting that Cas9 may have the ability to be programmed to target RNA as well. Cas proteins from other CRISPR/Cas subtypes may also be exploited in this regard. Thus, CRISPR/Cas systems represent an effective and versatile biotechnological tool, which will have significant impact on future advancements in genome engineering. PMID:24323919

  8. Iron and Zinc Exploitation during Bacterial Pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Li; Terwilliger, Austen; Maresso, Anthony W.

    2016-01-01

    Ancient bacteria originated from metal-rich environments. Billions of years of evolution directed these tiny single cell creatures to exploit the versatile properties of metals in catalyzing chemical reactions and biological responses. The result is an entire metallome of proteins that use metal co-factors to facilitate key cellular process that range from the production of energy to the replication of DNA. Two key metals in this regard are iron and zinc, both abundant on Earth but not readily accessible in a human host. Instead, pathogenic bacteria must employ clever ways to acquire these metals. In this review we describe the many elegant ways these bacteria mine, regulate, and craft the use of two key metals (iron and zinc) to build a virulence arsenal that challenges even the most sophisticated immune response. PMID:26497057

  9. Digital video steganalysis exploiting collusion sensitivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Budhia, Udit; Kundur, Deepa

    2004-09-01

    In this paper we present an effective steganalyis technique for digital video sequences based on the collusion attack. Steganalysis is the process of detecting with a high probability and low complexity the presence of covert data in multimedia. Existing algorithms for steganalysis target detecting covert information in still images. When applied directly to video sequences these approaches are suboptimal. In this paper, we present a method that overcomes this limitation by using redundant information present in the temporal domain to detect covert messages in the form of Gaussian watermarks. Our gains are achieved by exploiting the collusion attack that has recently been studied in the field of digital video watermarking, and more sophisticated pattern recognition tools. Applications of our scheme include cybersecurity and cyberforensics.

  10. Exploiting data redundancy in computational optical imaging.

    PubMed

    Munro, Peter R T

    2015-11-30

    We present an algorithm which exploits data redundancy to make computational, coherent, optical imaging more computationally efficient. This algorithm specifically addresses the computation of how light scattered by a sample is collected and coherently detected. It is of greatest benefit in the simulation of broadband optical systems employing coherent detection, such as optical coherence tomography. Although also amenable to time-harmonic data, the algorithm is designed to be embedded within time-domain electromagnetic scattering simulators such as the psuedo-spectral and finite-difference time domain methods. We derive the algorithm in detail as well as criteria which ensure accurate execution of the algorithm. We present simulations that verify the developed algorithm and demonstrate its utility. We expect this algorithm to be important to future developments in computational imaging. PMID:26698693

  11. Redressing China's Strategy of Water Resource Exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ran, Lishan; Lu, Xi Xi

    2013-03-01

    China, with the confrontation of water-related problems as an element of its long history, has been investing heavily in water engineering projects over the past few decades based on the assumption that these projects can solve its water problems. However, the anticipated benefits did not really occur, or at least not as large as expected. Instead, the results involved additional frustrations, such as biodiversity losses and human-induced disasters (i.e., landslides and earthquakes). Given its inherent shortcomings, the present engineering-dominated strategy for the management of water resources cannot help solve China's water problems and achieve its goal of low-carbon transformation. Therefore, the present strategy for water resources exploitation needs to be reevaluated and redressed. A policy change to achieve better management of Chinese rivers is urgently needed.

  12. Redressing China's strategy of water resource exploitation.

    PubMed

    Ran, Lishan; Lu, Xi Xi

    2013-03-01

    China, with the confrontation of water-related problems as an element of its long history, has been investing heavily in water engineering projects over the past few decades based on the assumption that these projects can solve its water problems. However, the anticipated benefits did not really occur, or at least not as large as expected. Instead, the results involved additional frustrations, such as biodiversity losses and human-induced disasters (i.e., landslides and earthquakes). Given its inherent shortcomings, the present engineering-dominated strategy for the management of water resources cannot help solve China's water problems and achieve its goal of low-carbon transformation. Therefore, the present strategy for water resources exploitation needs to be reevaluated and redressed. A policy change to achieve better management of Chinese rivers is urgently needed. PMID:23314565

  13. On the practical exploitation of scarsity.

    SciTech Connect

    Lyons, A.; Utke, J.; Mathematics and Computer Science

    2008-01-01

    Scarsity is the notion that the Jacobian J for a given function f: {Re}{sup n} {yields} {Re}{sup m} may have fewer than n {sup *} m degrees of freedom. A scarse J may be represented by a graph with a minimal edge count. So far, scarsity has been recognized only from a high-level application point of view, and no automatic exploitation has been attempted. We introduce an approach to recognize and use scarsity in computational graphs in a source transformation context. The goal is to approximate the minimal graph representation through a sequence of transformations including eliminations, reroutings, and normalizations, with a secondary goal of minimizing the transformation cost. The method requires no application-level insight and is implemented as a fully automatic transformation in OpenAD. This paper introduces the problem and a set of heuristics to approximate the minimal graph representation. We also present results on a set of test problems.

  14. Protocol to Exploit Waiting Resources for UASNs.

    PubMed

    Hung, Li-Ling; Luo, Yung-Jeng

    2016-01-01

    The transmission speed of acoustic waves in water is much slower than that of radio waves in terrestrial wireless sensor networks. Thus, the propagation delay in underwater acoustic sensor networks (UASN) is much greater. Longer propagation delay leads to complicated communication and collision problems. To solve collision problems, some studies have proposed waiting mechanisms; however, long waiting mechanisms result in low bandwidth utilization. To improve throughput, this study proposes a slotted medium access control protocol to enhance bandwidth utilization in UASNs. The proposed mechanism increases communication by exploiting temporal and spatial resources that are typically idle in order to protect communication against interference. By reducing wait time, network performance and energy consumption can be improved. A performance evaluation demonstrates that when the data packets are large or sensor deployment is dense, the energy consumption of proposed protocol is less than that of existing protocols as well as the throughput is higher than that of existing protocols. PMID:27005624

  15. Exploiting tumor metabolism: challenges for clinical translation

    PubMed Central

    Vander Heiden, Matthew G.

    2013-01-01

    The metabolism of cancer cells differs from most normal cells, but how to exploit this difference for patient benefit is incompletely understood. Cancer cells require altered metabolism to efficiently incorporate nutrients into biomass and support abnormal proliferation. In addition, the survival of tumor cells outside of a normal tissue context requires adaptation of metabolism to different microenvironments. Some existing chemotherapies target metabolic enzymes, and there is a resurgent interest in developing new cancer drugs that interfere with metabolism. Success with this approach depends on understanding why specific metabolic pathways are important for cancer cells, determining how best to select patients, and developing technologies for monitoring patient response to therapies that target metabolic enzymes. The articles in this Review series address these issues, with a focus on how altered metabolism might influence tumor progression and how this knowledge might inform the use of new therapies targeting cancer metabolism. Emerging biomarker strategies to guide drug development are also highlighted. PMID:23999437

  16. Implementing functional languages to exploit locality

    SciTech Connect

    Wolski, R.; Feo, J.; Cann, D.

    1991-01-01

    In the quest for high performance, no obstacle has been as persistent or unyielding as memory latency. It was hoped that dataflow's fine-grain asynchronous model of execution might defeat the memory latency problem. Unable to realize efficient fine-grain systems, the dataflow community is now studying medium-grain and coarse-grain implementations which, like conventional execution models, suffer the effects of memory latency. In this paper, we describe a functional language implementation that automatically exploits locality on cache-coherent multiprocessors. Our system achieves performance improvements reaching 20% for some programs. This study lends further support to the superiority of the functional paradigm for parallel processing. 11 refs., 9 figs.

  17. Explosives Detection: Exploitation of the Physical Signatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atkinson, David

    2010-10-01

    Explosives based terrorism is an ongoing threat that is evolving with respect to implementation, configuration and materials used. There are a variety of devices designed to detect explosive devices, however, each technology has limitations and operational constraints. A full understanding of the signatures available for detection coupled with the array of detection choices can be used to develop a conceptual model of an explosives screening operation. Physics based sensors provide a robust approach to explosives detection, typically through the identification of anomalies, and are currently used for screening in airports around the world. The next generation of detectors for explosives detection will need to be more sensitive and selective, as well as integrate seamlessly with devices focused on chemical signatures. An appreciation for the details of the physical signature exploitation in cluttered environments with time, space, and privacy constraints is necessary for effective explosives screening of people, luggage, cargo, and vehicles.

  18. Looking for prognosticators in ovine anaplasmosis: discriminant analysis of clinical and haematological parameters in lambs belonging to differently susceptible breeds experimentally infected with Anaplasma ovis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background A study was carried out to evaluate the response of different native sheep breeds to experimental infection with Anaplasma ovis, the most prevalent sheep tick-borne pathogen in Apulia (Southern Italy). Thirty-four lambs belonging to a Northern European breed (Suffolk) and two Southern Italian breeds (Comisana and Altamurana) were infected. Eleven clinical as well as haematological parameters were monitored at different temporal resolutions on the same subjects before and after the infection, resulting in a data set of 435 observations. The present work, aiming to further the research, presents the results of a multivariate analysis carried out to identify which parameters out of the eleven considered are the most reliable parameters to be considered as markers of the disease phenotype as well as prognosticators of practical clinical importance. Results Data were analysed by discriminant analysis. Out of the eleven considered variables (red blood cells, packed cell volume, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular haemoglobin, mean corpuscular haemoglobin content, haemoglobin concentration, white blood cells, neutrophils, leukocytes, platelets, rectal temperature), only seven were included in the step-wise model since significantly increasing the Mahlanobis distance between the two closest groups. Both discriminant functions resulted to be highly significant (P < 0.0001) and the percentage of variation accounted for by the first discriminant function was 63.6% of the variance in the grouping variable. Conclusions Taken together, the observed results stress the marked differentiation among the three breeds in terms of physio-pathological phenotypes indicating packed cell volume and red blood cell count as the most informative parameters in the routine clinical practice for A. ovis infection in sheep. PMID:24053615

  19. Functional Epitope Core Motif of the Anaplasma marginale Major Surface Protein 1a and Its Incorporation onto Bioelectrodes for Antibody Detection

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigues, Luciano P.; Santos, Fabiana A. A.; Faria, Paula C. B.; Martins, João R. S.; Brito-Madurro, Ana G.; Madurro, João M.; Goulart, Luiz R.

    2012-01-01

    Anaplasmosis, a persistent intraerythrocytic infection of cattle by Anaplasma marginale, causes severe anemia and a higher rate of abortion, resulting in significant loss to both dairy and beef industries. Clinical diagnosis is based on symptoms and confirmatory laboratory tests are required. Currently, all the diagnostic assays have been developed with whole antigens with indirect ELISA based on multiple epitopes. In a pioneer investigation we demonstrated the use of critical motifs of an epitope as biomarkers for immunosensor applications. Mimotopes of the MSP1a protein functional epitope were obtained through Phage Display after three cycles of selection of a 12-mer random peptide library against the neutralizing monoclonal antibody 15D2. Thirty-nine clones were randomly selected, sequenced, translated and aligned with the native sequence. The consensus sequence SxSSQSEASTSSQLGA was obtained, which is located in C-terminal end of the 28-aa repetitive motif of the MSP1a protein, but the alignment and sequences' variation among mimotopes allowed us to map the critical motif STSSxL within the consensus sequence. Based on these results, two peptides were chemically synthesized: one based on the critical motif (STSSQL, Am1) and the other based on the consensus sequence aligned with the native epitope (SEASTSSQLGA, Am2). Sera from 24 infected and 52 healthy animals were tested by ELISA for reactivity against Am1 and Am2, which presented sensitivities of 96% and 100%, respectively. The Am1 peptide was incorporated onto a biolectrode (graphite modified with poly-3-hydroxyphenylacetic acid) and direct serum detection was demonstrated by impedance, differential pulse voltammetry, and atomic force microscopy. The electrochemical sensor system proved to be highly effective in discriminating sera from positive and negative animals. These immunosensors were highly sensitive and selective for positive IgG, contaminants did not affect measurements, and were based on a simple

  20. GOCE Exploitation for Moho Modeling and Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sampierto, D.

    2011-07-01

    New ESA missions dedicated to the observation of the Earth from space, like the gravity-gradiometry mission GOCE and the radar altimetry mission CRYOSAT 2, foster research, among other subjects, also on inverse gravimetric problems and on the description of the nature and the geographical location of gravimetric signals. In this framework the GEMMA project (GOCE Exploitation for Moho Modeling and Applications), funded by the European Space Agency and Politecnico di Milano, aims at estimating the boundary between Earth's crust and mantle (the so called Mohorovičić discontinuity or Moho) from GOCE data in key regions of the world. In the project a solution based on a simple two layer model in spherical approximation is proposed. This inversion problem based on the linearization of the Newton's gravitational law around an approximate mean Moho surface will be solved by exploiting Wiener-Kolmogorov theory in the frequency domain where the depth of the Moho discontinuity will be treated as a random signal with a zero mean and its own covariance function. The algorithm can be applied in a numerically efficient way by using the Fast Fourier Transform. As for the gravity observations, we will consider grids of the anomalous gravitational potential and its second radial derivative at satellite altitude. In particular this will require first of all to elaborate GOCE data to obtain a local grid of the gravitational potential field and its second radial derivative and after that to separate the gravimetric signal due to the considered discontinuity from the gravitational effects of other geological structures present into the observations. The first problem can be solved by applying the so called space- wise approach to GOCE observations, while the second one can be achieved by considering a priori models and geophysical information by means of an appropriate Bayesan technique. Moreover other data such as ground gravity anomalies or seismic profiles can be combined, in an

  1. Mission Exploitation Platform PROBA-V

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goor, Erwin

    2016-04-01

    VITO and partners developed an end-to-end solution to drastically improve the exploitation of the PROBA-V EO-data archive (http://proba-v.vgt.vito.be/), the past mission SPOT-VEGETATION and derived vegetation parameters by researchers, service providers and end-users. The analysis of time series of data (+1PB) is addressed, as well as the large scale on-demand processing of near real-time data. From November 2015 an operational Mission Exploitation Platform (MEP) PROBA-V, as an ESA pathfinder project, will be gradually deployed at the VITO data center with direct access to the complete data archive. Several applications will be released to the users, e.g. - A time series viewer, showing the evolution of PROBA-V bands and derived vegetation parameters for any area of interest. - Full-resolution viewing services for the complete data archive. - On-demand processing chains e.g. for the calculation of N-daily composites. - A Virtual Machine will be provided with access to the data archive and tools to work with this data, e.g. various toolboxes and support for R and Python. After an initial release in January 2016, a research platform will gradually be deployed allowing users to design, debug and test applications on the platform. From the MEP PROBA-V, access to Sentinel-2 and landsat data will be addressed as well, e.g. to support the Cal/Val activities of the users. Users can make use of powerful Web based tools and can self-manage virtual machines to perform their work on the infrastructure at VITO with access to the complete data archive. To realise this, private cloud technology (openStack) is used and a distributed processing environment is built based on Hadoop. The Hadoop ecosystem offers a lot of technologies (Spark, Yarn, Accumulo, etc.) which we integrate with several open-source components. The impact of this MEP on the user community will be high and will completely change the way of working with the data and hence open the large time series to a larger

  2. Human anaplasmosis: the first Spanish case confirmed by PCR.

    PubMed

    García, J C; Núñez, M J; Castro, B; Fraile, F J; López, A; Mella, M C; Blanco, A; Sieira, C; Loureiro, E; Portillo, A; Oteo, J A

    2006-10-01

    We report a case of human anaplasmosis (HA) fulfilling the confirmation criteria: epidemiologic data and clinical picture compatible with HA; presence of a morulae within polymorphonuclear leukocyte; and positive PCR assay for Anaplasma phagocytophilum: This case report shows the presence of HA in Spain. PMID:17114773

  3. Role of Birds in Dispersal of Etiologic Agents of Tick-borne Zoonoses, Spain, 2009

    PubMed Central

    Palomar, Ana M.; Santibáñez, Paula; Mazuelas, David; Roncero, Lidia; Santibáñez, Sonia; Portillo, Aránzazu

    2012-01-01

    We amplified gene sequences from Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia garinii, B. valaisiana, B. turdi, Rickettsia monacensis, R. helvetica, R. sibirica sibirica, and Rickettsia spp. (including Candidatus Rickettsia vini) in ticks removed from birds in Spain. The findings support the role of passerine birds as possible dispersers of these tick-borne pathogens. PMID:22709801

  4. Infections with Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis and Cytokine Responses in 2 Persons Bitten by Ticks, Sweden

    PubMed Central

    Grankvist, Anna; Sandelin, Lisa Labbé; Andersson, Jennie; Fryland, Linda; Wilhelmsson, Peter; Lindgren, Per-Eric; Forsberg, Pia

    2015-01-01

    The prevalence of Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis infection was determined in 102 persons bitten by ticks in Sweden. Two infected women had erythematous rashes; 1 was co-infected with a Borrelia sp., and the other showed seroconversion for Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Both patients had increased levels of Neoehrlichia DNA and serum cytokines for several months. PMID:26197035

  5. Exploiting fungal cell wall components in vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Levitz, Stuart M.; Huang, Haibin; Ostroff, Gary R.; Specht, Charles A.

    2014-01-01

    Innate recognition of fungi leads to strong adaptive immunity. Investigators are trying to exploit this observation in vaccine development by combining antigens with evolutionarily conserved fungal cell wall carbohydrates to induce protective responses. Best studied is β-1,3-glucan, a glycan that activates complement and is recognized by Dectin-1. Administration of antigens in association with β-1,3-glucan, either by direct conjugation or complexed in glucan particles, results in robust humoral and cellular immune responses. While the host has a host of mannose receptors, responses to fungal mannoproteins generally are amplified if cells are cooperatively stimulated with an additional danger signal such as a toll-like receptor agonist. Chitosan, a polycationic homopolymer of glucosamine manufactured by the deacetylation of chitin, is being studied as an adjuvant in DNA and protein-based vaccines. It appears particularly promising in mucosal vaccines. Finally, universal and organism-specific fungal vaccines have been formulated by conjugating fungal cell wall glycans to carrier proteins. A major challenge will be to advance these experimental findings so that at risk patients can be protected. PMID:25404118

  6. Exploiting range imagery: techniques and applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armbruster, Walter

    2009-07-01

    Practically no applications exist for which automatic processing of 2D intensity imagery can equal human visual perception. This is not the case for range imagery. The paper gives examples of 3D laser radar applications, for which automatic data processing can exceed human visual cognition capabilities and describes basic processing techniques for attaining these results. The examples are drawn from the fields of helicopter obstacle avoidance, object detection in surveillance applications, object recognition at high range, multi-object-tracking, and object re-identification in range image sequences. Processing times and recognition performances are summarized. The techniques used exploit the bijective continuity of the imaging process as well as its independence of object reflectivity, emissivity and illumination. This allows precise formulations of the probability distributions involved in figure-ground segmentation, feature-based object classification and model based object recognition. The probabilistic approach guarantees optimal solutions for single images and enables Bayesian learning in range image sequences. Finally, due to recent results in 3D-surface completion, no prior model libraries are required for recognizing and re-identifying objects of quite general object categories, opening the way to unsupervised learning and fully autonomous cognitive systems.

  7. Exploiting Microbeams for Membrane Protein Structure Determination.

    PubMed

    Warren, Anna J; Axford, Danny; Paterson, Neil G; Owen, Robin L

    2016-01-01

    A reproducible, and sample independent means of predictably obtaining large, well-ordered crystals has proven elusive in macromolecular crystallography. In the structure determination pipeline, crystallisation often proves to be a rate-limiting step, and the process of obtaining even small or badly ordered crystals can prove time-consuming and laborious. This is particularly true in the field of membrane protein crystallography and this is reflected in the limited number of unique membrane protein structures deposited in the protein data bank (less than 650 by June 2016 - http://blanco.biomol.uci.edu/mpstruc ). Over recent years the requirement for, and time and cost associated with obtaining, large crystals has been partially alleviated through the development of beamline instrumentation allowing data collection, and structure solution, from ever-smaller crystals. Advances in several areas have led to a step change in what might be considered achievable during a synchrotron trip over the last decade. This chapter will briefly review the current status of the field, the tools available to ease data collection and processing, and give some examples of exploitation of these for membrane protein microfocus macromolecular crystallography. PMID:27553238

  8. Accelerating Large Data Analysis By Exploiting Regularities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moran, Patrick J.; Ellsworth, David

    2003-01-01

    We present techniques for discovering and exploiting regularity in large curvilinear data sets. The data can be based on a single mesh or a mesh composed of multiple submeshes (also known as zones). Multi-zone data are typical to Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations. Regularities include axis-aligned rectilinear and cylindrical meshes as well as cases where one zone is equivalent to a rigid-body transformation of another. Our algorithms can also discover rigid-body motion of meshes in time-series data. Next, we describe a data model where we can utilize the results from the discovery process in order to accelerate large data visualizations. Where possible, we replace general curvilinear zones with rectilinear or cylindrical zones. In rigid-body motion cases we replace a time-series of meshes with a transformed mesh object where a reference mesh is dynamically transformed based on a given time value in order to satisfy geometry requests, on demand. The data model enables us to make these substitutions and dynamic transformations transparently with respect to the visualization algorithms. We present results with large data sets where we combine our mesh replacement and transformation techniques with out-of-core paging in order to achieve significant speed-ups in analysis.

  9. Exploiting death: apoptotic immunity in microbial pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Ucker, D S

    2016-06-01

    Innate immunity typically is responsible for initial host responses against infections. Independently, nucleated cells that die normally as part of the physiological process of homeostasis in mammals (including humans) suppress immunity. Specifically, the physiological process of cell death (apoptosis) generates cells that are recognized specifically by viable cells of all types and elicit a profound transient suppression of host immunity (termed 'innate apoptotic immunity' (IAI)). IAI appears to be important normally for the maintenance of self-tolerance and for the resolution of inflammation. In addition, pathogens are able to take advantage of IAI through a variety of distinct mechanisms, to enable their proliferation within the host and enhance pathogenicity. For example, the protist pathogen Leishmania amazonensis, at its infective stage, mimics apoptotic cells by expressing apoptotic-like protein determinants on the cell surface, triggering immunosuppression directly. In contrast, the pathogenic bacterium Listeria monocytogenes triggers cell death in host lymphocytes, relying on those apoptotic cells to suppress host immune control and facilitate bacterial expansion. Finally, although the inhibition of apoptotic cell death is a common attribute of many viruses which facilitates their extended replication, it is clear that adenoviruses also reprogram the non-apoptotic dead cells that arise subsequently to manifest apoptotic-like immunosuppressive properties. These three instances represent diverse strategies used by microbial pathogens to exploit IAI, focusing attention on the potency of this facet of host immune control. Further examination of these cases will be revealing both of varied mechanisms of pathogenesis and the processes involved in IAI control. PMID:26943319

  10. Tonic Dopamine Modulates Exploitation of Reward Learning

    PubMed Central

    Beeler, Jeff A.; Daw, Nathaniel; Frazier, Cristianne R. M.; Zhuang, Xiaoxi

    2010-01-01

    The impact of dopamine on adaptive behavior in a naturalistic environment is largely unexamined. Experimental work suggests that phasic dopamine is central to reinforcement learning whereas tonic dopamine may modulate performance without altering learning per se; however, this idea has not been developed formally or integrated with computational models of dopamine function. We quantitatively evaluate the role of tonic dopamine in these functions by studying the behavior of hyperdopaminergic DAT knockdown mice in an instrumental task in a semi-naturalistic homecage environment. In this “closed economy” paradigm, subjects earn all of their food by pressing either of two levers, but the relative cost for food on each lever shifts frequently. Compared to wild-type mice, hyperdopaminergic mice allocate more lever presses on high-cost levers, thus working harder to earn a given amount of food and maintain their body weight. However, both groups show a similarly quick reaction to shifts in lever cost, suggesting that the hyperdominergic mice are not slower at detecting changes, as with a learning deficit. We fit the lever choice data using reinforcement learning models to assess the distinction between acquisition and expression the models formalize. In these analyses, hyperdopaminergic mice displayed normal learning from recent reward history but diminished capacity to exploit this learning: a reduced coupling between choice and reward history. These data suggest that dopamine modulates the degree to which prior learning biases action selection and consequently alters the expression of learned, motivated behavior. PMID:21120145

  11. Generating circuit tests by exploiting designed behavior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirley, Mark H.

    1988-12-01

    Generating tests for sequential devices is one of the hardest problems in designing and manufacturing digital circuits. This task is difficult primarily because internal components are accessible only indirectly, forcing a test generator to use the surrounding components collectively as a probe for detecting faults. This in turn forces the test generator to reason about complex interactions between the behaviors of these surrounding components. Current automated solutions are becoming ineffective as designs grow larger and more complex. Yet, despite the complexity, human experts remain remarkably successful, in part, because they use knowledge from many sources and use a variety of reasoning techniques. This thesis exploits several kinds of expert knowledge about circuits and test generation not used by the current algorithms. First, many test generation problems can be solved efficiently using operation relations, a novel representation of circuit behavior that connects internal component operations with directly executable circuit operations. Operation relations can be computed efficiently for sequential circuits that provide few operations at their interfaces by searching traces of simulated circuit behavior. Second, experts write test programs rather than test vectors because programs are a more readable and compact representation for tests than vectors are. Test programs can be constructed automatically by merging test program fragments using expert supplied goal-refined rules and domain independent planning techniques from artificial intelligence.

  12. Exploiting intrinsic fluctuations to identify model parameters.

    PubMed

    Zimmer, Christoph; Sahle, Sven; Pahle, Jürgen

    2015-04-01

    Parameterisation of kinetic models plays a central role in computational systems biology. Besides the lack of experimental data of high enough quality, some of the biggest challenges here are identification issues. Model parameters can be structurally non-identifiable because of functional relationships. Noise in measured data is usually considered to be a nuisance for parameter estimation. However, it turns out that intrinsic fluctuations in particle numbers can make parameters identifiable that were previously non-identifiable. The authors present a method to identify model parameters that are structurally non-identifiable in a deterministic framework. The method takes time course recordings of biochemical systems in steady state or transient state as input. Often a functional relationship between parameters presents itself by a one-dimensional manifold in parameter space containing parameter sets of optimal goodness. Although the system's behaviour cannot be distinguished on this manifold in a deterministic framework it might be distinguishable in a stochastic modelling framework. Their method exploits this by using an objective function that includes a measure for fluctuations in particle numbers. They show on three example models, immigration-death, gene expression and Epo-EpoReceptor interaction, that this resolves the non-identifiability even in the case of measurement noise with known amplitude. The method is applied to partially observed recordings of biochemical systems with measurement noise. It is simple to implement and it is usually very fast to compute. This optimisation can be realised in a classical or Bayesian fashion. PMID:26672148

  13. Examining the potential exploitation of UNOS policies.

    PubMed

    Zink, Sheldon; Wertlieb, Stacey; Catalano, John; Marwin, Victor

    2005-01-01

    The United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) waiting list was designed as a just and equitable system through which the limited number of organs is allocated to the millions of Americans in need of a transplant. People have trusted the system because of the belief that everyone on the list has an equal opportunity to receive an organ and also that allocation is blind to matters of financial standing, celebrity or political power. Recent events have revealed that certain practices and policies have the potential to be exploited. The policies addressed in this paper enable those on the list with the proper resources to gain an advantage over other less fortunate members, creating a system that benefits not the individual most in medical need, but the one with the best resources. These policies are not only unethical but threaten the balance and success of the entire UNOS system. This paper proposes one possible solution, which seeks to balance the concepts of justice and utility. PMID:16109680

  14. Relationship between exploitation, oscillation, MSY and extinction.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Bapan; Kar, T K; Legovic, T

    2014-10-01

    We give answers to two important problems arising in current fisheries: (i) how maximum sustainable yield (MSY) policy is influenced by the initial population level, and (ii) how harvesting, oscillation and MSY are related to each other in prey-predator systems. To examine the impact of initial population on exploitation, we analyze a single species model with strong Allee effect. It is found that even when the MSY exists, the dynamic solution may not converge to the equilibrium stock if the initial population level is higher but near the critical threshold level. In a prey-predator system with Allee effect in the prey species, the initial population does not have such important impact neither on MSY nor on maximum sustainable total yield (MSTY). However, harvesting the top predator may cause extinction of all species if odd number of trophic levels exist in the ecosystem. With regard to the second problem, we study two prey-predator models and establish that increasing harvesting effort either on prey, predator or both prey and predator destroys previously existing oscillation. Moreover, equilibrium stock both at MSY and MSTY level is stable. We also discuss the validity of found results to other prey-predator systems. PMID:25050794

  15. Exploiting Genetic Interference for Antiviral Therapy.

    PubMed

    Tanner, Elizabeth J; Kirkegaard, Karla A; Weinberger, Leor S

    2016-05-01

    Rapidly evolving viruses are a major threat to human health. Such viruses are often highly pathogenic (e.g., influenza virus, HIV, Ebola virus) and routinely circumvent therapeutic intervention through mutational escape. Error-prone genome replication generates heterogeneous viral populations that rapidly adapt to new selection pressures, leading to resistance that emerges with treatment. However, population heterogeneity bears a cost: when multiple viral variants replicate within a cell, they can potentially interfere with each other, lowering viral fitness. This genetic interference can be exploited for antiviral strategies, either by taking advantage of a virus's inherent genetic diversity or through generating de novo interference by engineering a competing genome. Here, we discuss two such antiviral strategies, dominant drug targeting and therapeutic interfering particles. Both strategies harness the power of genetic interference to surmount two particularly vexing obstacles-the evolution of drug resistance and targeting therapy to high-risk populations-both of which impede treatment in resource-poor settings. PMID:27149616

  16. Exploiting Virtualization and Cloud Computing in ATLAS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harald Barreiro Megino, Fernando; Benjamin, Doug; De, Kaushik; Gable, Ian; Hendrix, Val; Panitkin, Sergey; Paterson, Michael; De Silva, Asoka; van der Ster, Daniel; Taylor, Ryan; Vitillo, Roberto A.; Walker, Rod

    2012-12-01

    The ATLAS Computing Model was designed around the concept of grid computing; since the start of data-taking, this model has proven very successful in the federated operation of more than one hundred Worldwide LHC Computing Grid (WLCG) sites for offline data distribution, storage, processing and analysis. However, new paradigms in computing, namely virtualization and cloud computing, present improved strategies for managing and provisioning IT resources that could allow ATLAS to more flexibly adapt and scale its storage and processing workloads on varied underlying resources. In particular, ATLAS is developing a “grid-of-clouds” infrastructure in order to utilize WLCG sites that make resources available via a cloud API. This work will present the current status of the Virtualization and Cloud Computing R&D project in ATLAS Distributed Computing. First, strategies for deploying PanDA queues on cloud sites will be discussed, including the introduction of a “cloud factory” for managing cloud VM instances. Next, performance results when running on virtualized/cloud resources at CERN LxCloud, StratusLab, and elsewhere will be presented. Finally, we will present the ATLAS strategies for exploiting cloud-based storage, including remote XROOTD access to input data, management of EC2-based files, and the deployment of cloud-resident LCG storage elements.

  17. Understanding Online Child Sexual Exploitation Offenses.

    PubMed

    Ly, Thanh; Murphy, Lisa; Fedoroff, J Paul

    2016-08-01

    In the past three decades, there has been an exponential increase in the worldwide availability of Internet access and devices that are able to access online materials. This literature review investigated whether increased accessibility of Internet child pornography (CP) increases the risk of in-person child sexual exploitation. The current review found little to no evidence that availability of the Internet has increased the worldwide incidence or prevalence of in-person child sexual abuse. In fact, during the time period in which the Internet has flourished, international crime statistics have shown a steady decrease of in-person child sexual abuse. The only exception to this trend is an increase in Internet child pornography or luring offenses (e.g., Stats Can, 2014), which involves child abuse by definition. This article reviews the impact of the Internet on child sexual abuse. It also reviews the characteristics of online CP offenders. Treatment of these offenders and prevention of such offenses is also discussed. PMID:27325170

  18. Exploiting graph properties of game trees

    SciTech Connect

    Plaat, A.; Pijls, W.; Bruin, A. de; Schaeffer, J.

    1996-12-31

    The state space of most adversary games is a directed graph. However, due to the success of simple recursive algorithms based on alpha-beta, theoreticians and practitioners have concentrated on the traversal of trees, giving the field the name {open_quotes}game-tree search,{close_quotes} This paper shows that the focus on trees has obscured some important properties of the underlying graphs. One of the hallmarks of the field of game-tree search has been the notion of the minimal tree, the smallest tree that has to be searched by any algorithm to find the minimax value. In fact, for most games it is a directed graph. As demonstrated in chess and checkers, we show that the minimal graph is significantly smaller than previously thought, proving that there is more room for improvement of current algorithms. We exploit the graph properties of the search space to reduce the size of trees built in practice by at least 25%. For over a decade, fixed-depth alpha-beta searching has been considered a closed subject, with research moving on to more application-dependent techniques. This work opens up new avenues of research for further application-independent improvements.

  19. Exploiting phase transitions for fusion optimization problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Svenson, Pontus

    2005-05-01

    Many optimization problems that arise in multi-target tracking and fusion applications are known to be NP-complete, ie, believed to have worst-case complexities that are exponential in problem size. Recently, many such NP-complete problems have been shown to display threshold phenomena: it is possible to define a parameter such that the probability of a random problem instance having a solution jumps from 1 to 0 at a specific value of the parameter. It is also found that the amount of resources needed to solve the problem instance peaks at the transition point. Among the problems found to display this behavior are graph coloring (aka clustering, relevant for multi-target tracking), satisfiability (which occurs in resource allocation and planning problem), and the travelling salesperson problem. Physicists studying these problems have found intriguing similarities to phase transitions in spin models of statistical mechanics. Many methods previously used to analyze spin glasses have been used to explain some of the properties of the behavior at the transition point. It turns out that the transition happens because the fitness landscape of the problem changes as the parameter is varied. Some algorithms have been introduced that exploit this knowledge of the structure of the fitness landscape. In this paper, we review some of the experimental and theoretical work on threshold phenomena in optimization problems and indicate how optimization problems from tracking and sensor resource allocation could be analyzed using these results.

  20. Exploiting Genetic Interference for Antiviral Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Kirkegaard, Karla A.; Weinberger, Leor S.

    2016-01-01

    Rapidly evolving viruses are a major threat to human health. Such viruses are often highly pathogenic (e.g., influenza virus, HIV, Ebola virus) and routinely circumvent therapeutic intervention through mutational escape. Error-prone genome replication generates heterogeneous viral populations that rapidly adapt to new selection pressures, leading to resistance that emerges with treatment. However, population heterogeneity bears a cost: when multiple viral variants replicate within a cell, they can potentially interfere with each other, lowering viral fitness. This genetic interference can be exploited for antiviral strategies, either by taking advantage of a virus’s inherent genetic diversity or through generating de novo interference by engineering a competing genome. Here, we discuss two such antiviral strategies, dominant drug targeting and therapeutic interfering particles. Both strategies harness the power of genetic interference to surmount two particularly vexing obstacles—the evolution of drug resistance and targeting therapy to high-risk populations—both of which impede treatment in resource-poor settings. PMID:27149616

  1. GOCE: mission accomplished but exploitation continues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Floberghagen, Rune; Fehringer, Michael; Steiger, Christoph; Romanazzo, Massimo; Frommknecht, Bjoern; Klinkrad, Heiner

    2014-05-01

    Launched in March 2009 into an extremely low Earth orbit on an originally 20-months mission to map the quasi-static gravity field, the GOCE satellite more than tripled its expected measurement return. Being the lowest orbiting research satellite since the beginning, GOCE underwent a series of orbit lowerings towards the end of its lifetime in order to further maximise the signal content (both in amplitude and scale) of the gravity gradient and hi-lo satellite-to-satellite observations. Gravity field mapping in drag-compensation mode at 224 km altitude was completed on 21 October 2013, after which the satellite rapidly decayed deeper into the upper layers of the atmosphere. During this phase all instruments and avionics equipment were acquiring data. Finally, the satellite re-entered over the South Atlantic ocean in the very early hours of 11 November 2013 (UTC). This contribution describes the science return of GOCE in its final phase, including the de-orbiting and re-entry phase. It provides an overview of the impact of GOCE in the earth sciences, incl. geodesy, oceanography, solid earth and aeronomy. Plans for continued exploitation of GOCE data - within and outside the context of the European Space Agency programmes - will be also presented.

  2. Exploiting fungal cell wall components in vaccines.

    PubMed

    Levitz, Stuart M; Huang, Haibin; Ostroff, Gary R; Specht, Charles A

    2015-03-01

    Innate recognition of fungi leads to strong adaptive immunity. Investigators are trying to exploit this observation in vaccine development by combining antigens with evolutionarily conserved fungal cell wall carbohydrates to induce protective responses. Best studied is β-1,3-glucan, a glycan that activates complement and is recognized by dectin-1. Administration of antigens in association with β-1,3-glucan, either by direct conjugation or complexed in glucan particles, results in robust humoral and cellular immune responses. While the host has a host of mannose receptors, responses to fungal mannoproteins generally are amplified if cells are cooperatively stimulated with an additional danger signal such as a toll-like receptor agonist. Chitosan, a polycationic homopolymer of glucosamine manufactured by the deacetylation of chitin, is being studied as an adjuvant in DNA and protein-based vaccines. It appears particularly promising in mucosal vaccines. Finally, universal and organism-specific fungal vaccines have been formulated by conjugating fungal cell wall glycans to carrier proteins. A major challenge will be to advance these experimental findings so that at risk patients can be protected. PMID:25404118

  3. Competing Discourses about Youth Sexual Exploitation in Canadian News Media

    PubMed Central

    Saewyc, Elizabeth M.; Miller, Bonnie B.; Rivers, Robert; Matthews, Jennifer; Hilario, Carla; Hirakata, Pam

    2015-01-01

    Media holds the power to create, maintain, or break down stigmatizing attitudes, which affect policies, funding, and services. To understand how Canadian news media depicts the commercial sexual exploitation of children and youth, we examined 835 Canadian newspaper articles from 1989–2008 using a mixed methods critical discourse analysis approach, comparing representations to existing research about sexually exploited youth. Despite research evidence that equal rates of boys and girls experience exploitation, Canadian news media depicted exploited youth predominantly as heterosexual girls, and described them alternately as victims or workers in a trade, often both in the same story. News media mentioned exploiters far less often than victims, and portrayed them almost exclusively as male, most often called ‘customers’ or ‘consumers,’ and occasionally ‘predators’; in contrast, research has documented the majority of sexually exploited boys report female exploiters. Few news stories over the past two decades portrayed the diversity of victims, perpetrators, and venues of exploitation reported in research. The focus on victims but not exploiters helps perpetuate stereotypes of sexual exploitation as business or a ‘victimless crime,’ maintains the status quo, and blurs responsibility for protecting youth under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Health care providers and researchers can be advocates for accuracy in media coverage about sexual exploitation; news reporters and editors should focus on exploiters more than victims, draw on existing research evidence to avoid perpetuating stereotypes, and use accurate terms, such as commercial sexual exploitation, rather than terms related to business or trade. PMID:26793015

  4. Transnational gestational surrogacy: does it have to be exploitative?

    PubMed

    Kirby, Jeffrey

    2014-01-01

    This article explores the controversial practice of transnational gestational surrogacy and poses a provocative question: Does it have to be exploitative? Various existing models of exploitation are considered and a novel exploitation-evaluation heuristic is introduced to assist in the analysis of the potentially exploitative dimensions/elements of complex health-related practices. On the basis of application of the heuristic, I conclude that transnational gestational surrogacy, as currently practiced in low-income country settings (such as rural, western India), is exploitative of surrogate women. Arising out of consideration of the heuristic's exploitation conditions, a set of public education and enabled choice, enhanced protections, and empowerment reforms to transnational gestational surrogacy practice is proposed that, if incorporated into a national regulatory framework and actualized within a low income country, could possibly render such practice nonexploitative. PMID:24766117

  5. Aspects of abuse: commercial sexual exploitation of children.

    PubMed

    Jimenez, Melissa; Jackson, Allison M; Deye, Katherine

    2015-03-01

    Commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) and adolescents is a serious worldwide problem. It is, in essence, the sexual abuse of a minor for economic gain. In the United States, there is no uniform nationwide database to capture the incidence and prevalence of CSEC. Therefore, there is a great variation in the estimates, but the actual numbers are unknown. Given the clandestine nature of the practice, it is often underreported and underidentified. Healthcare providers will often encounter victims of commercial sexual exploitation due to mental health, physical health, and sexual health consequences, and therefore should be knowledgeable in the signs of possible sexual exploitation. The aim of this article is to educate healthcare providers on how vulnerable children may become sexually exploited, the health consequences involved with sexual exploitation, how to better identify possible victims, and the medical evaluation of a victim of sexual exploitation. PMID:25823944

  6. Exploiting spatial descriptions in visual scene analysis.

    PubMed

    Ziegler, Leon; Johannsen, Katrin; Swadzba, Agnes; De Ruiter, Jan P; Wachsmuth, Sven

    2012-08-01

    The reliable automatic visual recognition of indoor scenes with complex object constellations using only sensor data is a nontrivial problem. In order to improve the construction of an accurate semantic 3D model of an indoor scene, we exploit human-produced verbal descriptions of the relative location of pairs of objects. This requires the ability to deal with different spatial reference frames (RF) that humans use interchangeably. In German, both the intrinsic and relative RF are used frequently, which often leads to ambiguities in referential communication. We assume that there are certain regularities that help in specific contexts. In a first experiment, we investigated how speakers of German describe spatial relationships between different pieces of furniture. This gave us important information about the distribution of the RFs used for furniture-predicate combinations, and by implication also about the preferred spatial predicate. The results of this experiment are compiled into a computational model that extracts partial orderings of spatial arrangements between furniture items from verbal descriptions. In the implemented system, the visual scene is initially scanned by a 3D camera system. From the 3D point cloud, we extract point clusters that suggest the presence of certain furniture objects. We then integrate the partial orderings extracted from the verbal utterances incrementally and cumulatively with the estimated probabilities about the identity and location of objects in the scene, and also estimate the probable orientation of the objects. This allows the system to significantly improve both the accuracy and richness of its visual scene representation. PMID:22806654

  7. Exploiting Untapped Information Resources in Earth Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramachandran, R.; Fox, P. A.; Kempler, S.; Maskey, M.

    2015-12-01

    One of the continuing challenges in any Earth science investigation is the amount of time and effort required for data preparation before analysis can begin. Current Earth science data and information systems have their own shortcomings. For example, the current data search systems are designed with the assumption that researchers find data primarily by metadata searches on instrument or geophysical keywords, assuming that users have sufficient knowledge of the domain vocabulary to be able to effectively utilize the search catalogs. These systems lack support for new or interdisciplinary researchers who may be unfamiliar with the domain vocabulary or the breadth of relevant data available. There is clearly a need to innovate and evolve current data and information systems in order to improve data discovery and exploration capabilities to substantially reduce the data preparation time and effort. We assert that Earth science metadata assets are dark resources, information resources that organizations collect, process, and store for regular business or operational activities but fail to utilize for other purposes. The challenge for any organization is to recognize, identify and effectively utilize the dark data stores in their institutional repositories to better serve their stakeholders. NASA Earth science metadata catalogs contain dark resources consisting of structured information, free form descriptions of data and pre-generated images. With the addition of emerging semantic technologies, such catalogs can be fully utilized beyond their original design intent of supporting current search functionality. In this presentation, we will describe our approach of exploiting these information resources to provide novel data discovery and exploration pathways to science and education communities

  8. Exploitation of Parallelism in Climate Models

    SciTech Connect

    Baer, F.; Tribbia, J.J.; Williamson, D.L.

    1999-03-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE), through its CHAMMP initiative, hopes to develop the capability to make meaningful regional climate forecasts on time scales exceeding a decade, such capability to be based on numerical prediction type models. We propose research to contribute to each of the specific items enumerated in the CHAMMP announcement (Notice 91-3); i.e., to consider theoretical limits to prediction of climate and climate change on appropriate time scales, to develop new mathematical techniques to utilize massively parallel processors (MPP), to actually utilize MPPs as a research tool, and to develop improved representations of some processes essential to climate prediction. In particular, our goals are to: (1) Reconfigure the prediction equations such that the time iteration process can be compressed by use of MMP architecture, and to develop appropriate algorithms. (2) Develop local subgrid scale models which can provide time and space dependent parameterization for a state- of-the-art climate model to minimize the scale resolution necessary for a climate model, and to utilize MPP capability to simultaneously integrate those subgrid models and their statistics. (3) Capitalize on the MPP architecture to study the inherent ensemble nature of the climate problem. By careful choice of initial states, many realizations of the climate system can be determined concurrently and more realistic assessments of the climate prediction can be made in a realistic time frame. To explore these initiatives, we will exploit all available computing technology, and in particular MPP machines. We anticipate that significant improvements in modeling of climate on the decadal and longer time scales for regional space scales will result from our efforts.

  9. Simulation of subsea gas hydrate exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Janicki, Georg; Schlüter, Stefan; Hennig, Torsten; Deerberg, Görge

    2014-05-01

    The recovery of methane from gas hydrate layers that have been detected in several subsea sediments and permafrost regions around the world is a promising perspective to overcome future shortages in natural gas supply. Being aware that conventional natural gas resources are limited, research is going on to develop technologies for the production of natural gas from such new sources. Thus various research programs have started since the early 1990s in Japan, USA, Canada, India, and Germany to investigate hydrate deposits and develop required technologies. In recent years, intensive research has focussed on the capture and storage of CO2 from combustion processes to reduce climate impact. While different natural or man-made reservoirs like deep aquifers, exhausted oil and gas deposits or other geological formations are considered to store gaseous or liquid CO2, the storage of CO2 as hydrate in former methane hydrate fields is another promising alternative. Due to beneficial stability conditions, methane recovery may be well combined with CO2 storage in the form of hydrates. Regarding technological implementation many problems have to be overcome. Especially mixing, heat and mass transfer in the reservoir are limiting factors causing very long process times. Within the scope of the German research project »SUGAR« different technological approaches for the optimized exploitation of gas hydrate deposits are evaluated and compared by means of dynamic system simulations and analysis. Detailed mathematical models for the most relevant chemical and physical processes are developed. The basic mechanisms of gas hydrate formation/dissociation and heat and mass transport in porous media are considered and implemented into simulation programs. Simulations based on geological field data have been carried out. The studies focus on the potential of gas production from turbidites and their fitness for CO2 storage. The effects occurring during gas production and CO2 storage within

  10. Nanostructures Exploit Hybrid-Polariton Resonances

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, Mark

    2008-01-01

    Nanostructured devices that exploit the hybrid-polariton resonances arising from coupling among photons, phonons, and plasmons are subjects of research directed toward the development of infrared-spectroscopic sensors for measuring extremely small quantities of molecules of interest. The spectroscopic techniques in question are surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) and surface enhanced infrared absorption (SEIRA). An important intermediate goal of this research is to increase the sensitivity achievable by these techniques. The basic idea of the approach being followed in this research is to engineer nanostructured devices and thereby engineer their hybrid-polariton resonances to concentrate infrared radiation incident upon their surfaces in such a manner as to increase the absorption of the radiation for SEIRA and measure the frequency shifts of surface vibrational modes. The underlying hybrid-polariton-resonance concept is best described by reference to experimental devices that have been built and tested to demonstrate the concept. The nanostructure of each such device includes a matrix of silicon carbide particles of approximately 1 micron in diameter that are supported on a potassium bromide (KBr) or poly(tetrafluoroethylene) [PTFE] window. These grains are sputter-coated with gold grains of 40-nm size (see figure). From the perspective of classical electrodynamics, in this nanostructure, that includes a particulate or otherwise rough surface, the electric-field portion of an incident electromagnetic field becomes concentrated on the particles when optical resonance conditions are met. Going beyond the perspective of classical electrodynamics, it can be seen that when the resonance frequencies of surface phonons and surface plasmons overlap, the coupling of the resonances gives rise to an enhanced radiation-absorption or -scattering mechanism. The sizes, shapes, and aggregation of the particles determine the frequencies of the resonances. Hence, the task of

  11. Simulated population responses of common carp to commercial exploitation

    SciTech Connect

    Weber, Michael J.; Hennen, Matthew J.; Brown, Michael L.

    2011-12-01

    Common carp Cyprinus carpio is a widespread invasive species that can become highly abundant and impose deleterious ecosystem effects. Thus, aquatic resource managers are interested in controlling common carp populations. Control of invasive common carp populations is difficult, due in part to the inherent uncertainty of how populations respond to exploitation. To understand how common carp populations respond to exploitation, we evaluated common carp population dynamics (recruitment, growth, and mortality) in three natural lakes in eastern South Dakota. Common carp exhibited similar population dynamics across these three systems that were characterized by consistent recruitment (ages 3 to 15 years present), fast growth (K = 0.37 to 0.59), and low mortality (A = 1 to 7%). We then modeled the effects of commercial exploitation on size structure, abundance, and egg production to determine its utility as a management tool to control populations. All three populations responded similarly to exploitation simulations with a 575-mm length restriction, representing commercial gear selectivity. Simulated common carp size structure modestly declined (9 to 37%) in all simulations. Abundance of common carp declined dramatically (28 to 56%) at low levels of exploitation (0 to 20%) but exploitation >40% had little additive effect and populations were only reduced by 49 to 79% despite high exploitation (>90%). Maximum lifetime egg production was reduced from 77 to 89% at a moderate level of exploitation (40%), indicating the potential for recruitment overfishing. Exploitation further reduced common carp size structure, abundance, and egg production when simulations were not size selective. Our results provide insights to how common carp populations may respond to exploitation. Although commercial exploitation may be able to partially control populations, an integrated removal approach that removes all sizes of common carp has a greater chance of controlling population abundance

  12. Exploiting for medical and biological applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giano, Michael C.

    Biotherapeutics are an emerging class of drug composed of molecules ranging in sizes from peptides to large proteins. Due to their poor stability and mucosal membrane permeability, biotherapeutics are administered by a parenteral method (i.e., syringe, intravenous or intramuscular). Therapeutics delivered systemically often experience short half-lives. While, local administration may involve invasive surgical procedures and suffer from poor retention at the site of application. To compensate, the patient receives frequent doses of highly concentrated therapeutic. Unfortunately, the off-target side effects and discomfort associated with multiple injections results in poor patient compliance. Therefore, new delivery methods which can improve therapeutic retention, reduce the frequency of administration and may aid in decreasing the off-target side effects is a necessity. Hydrogels are a class of biomaterials that are gaining interests for tissue engineering and drug delivery applications. Hydrogel materials are defined as porous, 3-dimensional networks that are primarily composed of water. Generally, they are mechanically rigid, cytocompatible and easily chemically functionalized. Collectively, these properties make hydrogels fantastic candidates to perform as drug delivery depots. Current hydrogel delivery systems physically entrap the target therapeutic which is then subsequently released over time at the site of administration. The swelling and degradation of the material effect the diffusion of the therapy from the hydrogel, and therefore should be controlled. Although these strategies provide some regulation over therapeutic release, full control of the delivery is not achieved. Newer approaches are focused on designing hydrogels that exploit known interactions, covalently attach the therapy or respond to an external stimulus in an effort to gain improved control over the therapy's release. Unfortunately, the biotherapeutic is typically required to be chemically

  13. A Descriptive Study on Sexually Exploited Children in Residential Treatment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Twill, Sarah E.; Green, Denise M.; Traylor, Amy

    2010-01-01

    Sexual exploitation and prostitution of children and adolescents is a multibillion dollar industry in the United States (Estes and Weiner in "Medical, legal & social science aspects of child sexual exploitation: A comprehensive review of pornography, prostitution, and internet crimes, vol I," G.W. Medical Publishing, Inc, St Louis, 2005; Milloy in…

  14. Early Sexual Exploitation as an Influence in Prostitution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Silbert, Mimi H.; Pines, Ayala M.

    1983-01-01

    Surveyed 200 female street prostitutes to determine whether they were sexually exploited during childhood. Results showed 60 percent of the subjects were sexually exploited. The few girls who discussed their abuse with others were met with shame and most often inaction. Only 10 percent were abused by strangers. (JAC)

  15. Self-Report Measure of Financial Exploitation of Older Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conrad, Kendon J.; Iris, Madelyn; Ridings, John W.; Langley, Kate; Wilber, Kathleen H.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: This study was designed to improve the measurement of financial exploitation (FE) by testing psychometric properties of the older adult financial exploitation measure (OAFEM), a client self-report instrument. Design and Methods: Rasch item response theory and traditional validation approaches were used. Questionnaires were administered by…

  16. The Intersection of Financial Exploitation and Financial Capacity

    PubMed Central

    Lichtenberg, P.A.

    2016-01-01

    Research in the past decade has documented that financial exploitation of older adults has become a major problem and Psychology is only recently increasing its presence in efforts to reduce exploitation. During the same time period, Psychology has been a leader in setting best practices for the assessment of diminished capacity in older adults culminating in the 2008 ABA/APA joint publication on a handbook for psychologists. Assessment of financial decision making capacity is often the cornerstone assessment needed in cases of financial exploitation. This paper will examine the intersection of financial exploitation and decision making capacity; introduce a new conceptual model and new tools for both the investigation and prevention of financial exploitation. PMID:27159438

  17. [Ecotourism exploitation model in Bita Lake Natural Reserve of Yunnan].

    PubMed

    Yang, G; Wang, Y; Zhong, L

    2000-12-01

    Bita lake provincial natural reserve is located in Shangri-La region of North-western Yunnan, and was set as a demonstrating area for ecotourism exploitation in 1998. After a year's exploitation construction and half a year's operation as a branch of the 99' Kunming International Horticulture Exposition to accept tourists, it was proved that the ecotourism demonstrating area attained four integrated functions of ecotourism, i.e., tourism, protection, poverty clearing and environment education. Five exploitation and management models including function zoned exploitation model, featured tourism communication model signs system designing model, local Tibetan family reception model and environmental monitoring model, were also successful, which were demonstrated and spreaded to the whole province. Bita lake provincial natural reserve could be a good sample for the ecotourism exploitation natural reserves of the whole country. PMID:11767581

  18. Exploit and ignore the consequences: A mother of planetary issues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moustafa, K.

    2016-07-01

    Many environmental and planetary issues are due to an exploitation strategy based on exploit, consume and ignore the consequences. As many natural and environmental resources are limited in time and space, such exploitation approach causes important damages on earth, in the sea and maybe soon in the space. To sustain conditions under which humans and other living species can coexist in productive and dynamic harmony with their environments, terrestrial and space exploration programs may need to be based on 'scrutinize the consequences, prepare adequate solutions and then, only then, exploit'. Otherwise, the exploitation of planetary resources may put the environmental stability and sustainability at a higher risk than it is currently predicted. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Exploit and ignore the consequences: A mother of planetary issues.

    PubMed

    Moustafa, Khaled

    2016-07-01

    Many environmental and planetary issues are due to an exploitation strategy based on exploit, consume and ignore the consequences. As many natural and environmental resources are limited in time and space, such exploitation approach causes important damages on earth, in the sea and maybe soon in the space. To sustain conditions under which humans and other living species can coexist in productive and dynamic harmony with their environments, terrestrial and space exploration programs may need to be based on 'scrutinize the consequences, prepare adequate solutions and then, only then, exploit'. Otherwise, the exploitation of planetary resources may put the environmental stability and sustainability at a higher risk than it is currently predicted. PMID:27133936

  20. Uncertainty of exploitation estimates made from tag returns

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miranda, L.E.; Brock, R.E.; Dorr, B.S.

    2002-01-01

    Over 6,000 crappies Pomoxis spp. were tagged in five water bodies to estimate exploitation rates by anglers. Exploitation rates were computed as the percentage of tags returned after adjustment for three sources of uncertainty: postrelease mortality due to the tagging process, tag loss, and the reporting rate of tagged fish. Confidence intervals around exploitation rates were estimated by resampling from the probability distributions of tagging mortality, tag loss, and reporting rate. Estimates of exploitation rates ranged from 17% to 54% among the five study systems. Uncertainty around estimates of tagging mortality, tag loss, and reporting resulted in 90% confidence intervals around the median exploitation rate as narrow as 15 percentage points and as broad as 46 percentage points. The greatest source of estimation error was uncertainty about tag reporting. Because the large investments required by tagging and reward operations produce imprecise estimates of the exploitation rate, it may be worth considering other approaches to estimating it or simply circumventing the exploitation question altogether.

  1. Rationalising predictors of child sexual exploitation and sex-trading.

    PubMed

    Klatt, Thimna; Cavner, Della; Egan, Vincent

    2014-02-01

    Although there is evidence for specific risk factors leading to child sexual exploitation and prostitution, these influences overlap and have rarely been examined concurrently. The present study examined case files for 175 young persons who attended a voluntary organization in Leicester, United Kingdom, which supports people who are sexually exploited or at risk of sexual exploitation. Based on the case files, the presence or absence of known risk factors for becoming a sex worker was coded. Data were analyzed using t-test, logistic regression, and smallest space analysis. Users of the voluntary organization's services who had been sexually exploited exhibited a significantly greater number of risk factors than service users who had not been victims of sexual exploitation. The logistic regression produced a significant model fit. However, of the 14 potential predictors--many of which were associated with each other--only four variables significantly predicted actual sexual exploitation: running away, poverty, drug and/or alcohol use, and having friends or family members in prostitution. Surprisingly, running away was found to significantly decrease the odds of becoming involved in sexual exploitation. Smallest space analysis of the data revealed 5 clusters of risk factors. Two of the clusters, which reflected a desperation and need construct and immature or out-of-control lifestyles, were significantly associated with sexual exploitation. Our research suggests that some risk factors (e.g. physical and emotional abuse, early delinquency, and homelessness) for becoming involved in sexual exploitation are common but are part of the problematic milieu of the individuals affected and not directly associated with sex trading itself. Our results also indicate that it is important to engage with the families and associates of young persons at risk of becoming (or remaining) a sex worker if one wants to reduce the numbers of persons who engage in this activity. PMID

  2. Conceptual model and map of financial exploitation of older adults.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Kendon J; Iris, Madelyn; Ridings, John W; Fairman, Kimberly P; Rosen, Abby; Wilber, Kathleen H

    2011-10-01

    This article describes the processes and outcomes of three-dimensional concept mapping to conceptualize financial exploitation of older adults. Statements were generated from a literature review and by local and national panels consisting of 16 experts in the field of financial exploitation. These statements were sorted and rated using Concept Systems software, which grouped the statements into clusters and depicted them as a map. Statements were grouped into six clusters, and ranked by the experts as follows in descending severity: (a) theft and scams, (b) financial victimization, (c) financial entitlement, (d) coercion, (e) signs of possible financial exploitation, and (f) money management difficulties. The hierarchical model can be used to identify elder financial exploitation and differentiate it from related but distinct areas of victimization. The severity hierarchy may be used to develop measures that will enable more precise screening for triage of clients into appropriate interventions. PMID:21978290

  3. Detection of canine vector-borne diseases in eastern Poland by ELISA and PCR.

    PubMed

    Dzięgiel, Beata; Adaszek, Łukasz; Carbonero, Alfonso; Łyp, Paweł; Winiarczyk, Mateusz; Dębiak, Piotr; Winiarczyk, Stanisław

    2016-03-01

    The aim of the study was to establish the prevalence of Ehrlichia canis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Borrelia burgdorferi in dogs in eastern Poland and to determine the factors associated with exposure (seroposity) or infection (PCR). Anti-A. phagocytophilum, anti-B. burgdorferi and anti-E. canis antibodies were determined in 400 dogs, using the SNAP 4Dx ® test (IDEXX Laboratories). In addition, PCRs were performed for the detection of E. canis, A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi DNA. In reference to the risk factor analysis, a regression logistic model was determined for each aetiological agent. The overall seroprevalence was highest for B. burgdorferi (11.0 %), followed by A. phagocytophilum (8.0 %) and E. canis (1.5 %). Eleven healthy dogs were found to be infected with A. phagocytophilum, as determined by PCR, while the remainder were seronegative. For B. burgdorferi, the DNA of the spirochetes was detected in the blood of 20 dogs, while the presence of anti-B. burgdorferi IgG was detected in the sera of ten of these. For E. canis, none of the dogs tested positive by PCR. Tick control was included as a protective factor for A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi, while the origin (rural) was included as a risk factor for B. burgdorferi and A. phagocytophilum infection. In addition, breed (pure) was a risk factor for B. burgdorferi infection, and sex (female) was a risk factor for E. canis. PMID:26581374

  4. Experimental quantum imaging exploiting multimode spatial correlation of twin beams

    SciTech Connect

    Brida, Giorgio; Genovese, Marco; Meda, Alice; Berchera, Ivano Ruo

    2011-03-15

    Properties of quantum states have disclosed new and revolutionary technologies, ranging from quantum information to quantum imaging. This last field is intended to overcome the limits of classical imaging by exploiting specific properties of quantum states of light. One of the most interesting proposed schemes exploits spatial quantum correlations between twin beams for realizing sub-shot-noise imaging of weakly absorbing objects, leading ideally to a noise-free imaging. Here we discuss in detail the experimental realization of this scheme, showing its capability to reach a larger signal-to-noise ratio with respect to classical imaging methods and therefore its potential for future practical applications.

  5. From Exploitation to Industry: Definitions, Risks, and Consequences of Domestic Sexual Exploitation and Sex Work Among Women and Girls

    PubMed Central

    Gerassi, Lara

    2015-01-01

    In the last 15 years, terms such as prostitution, sex trafficking, sexual exploitation, modern-day slavery, and sex work have elicited much confusion and debate as to their definitions. Consequently several challenges have emerged for both law enforcement in the prosecution of criminals and practitioners in service provision. This article reviews the state of the literature with regard to domestic, sexual exploitation among women and girls in the United States and seeks to (1) provide definitions and describe the complexity of all terms relating to domestic sexual exploitation of women and girls in the United States, (2) explore available national prevalence data according to the definitions provided, and (3) review the evidence of mental health, social, and structural risk factors at the micro-, mezzo-, and macrolevels. PMID:26726289

  6. Exploitation and community engagement: can community advisory boards successfully assume a role minimising exploitation in international research?

    PubMed

    Pratt, Bridget; Lwin, Khin Maung; Zion, Deborah; Nosten, Francois; Loff, Bebe; Cheah, Phaik Yeong

    2015-04-01

    It has been suggested that community advisory boards (CABs) can play a role in minimising exploitation in international research. To get a better idea of what this requires and whether it might be achievable, the paper first describes core elements that we suggest must be in place for a CAB to reduce the potential for exploitation. The paper then examines a CAB established by the Shoklo Malaria Research Unit under conditions common in resource-poor settings - namely, where individuals join with a very limited understanding of disease and medical research and where an existing organisational structure is not relied upon to serve as the CAB. Using the Tak Province Border Community Ethics Advisory Board (T-CAB) as a case study, we assess the extent to which it might be able to take on a role minimising exploitation were it to decide to do so. We investigate whether, after two years in operation, T-CAB is capable of assessing clinical trials for exploitative features and addressing those found to have them. The findings show that, although T-CAB members have gained knowledge and developed capacities that are foundational for one-day taking on a role to reduce exploitation, their ability to critically evaluate studies for the presence of exploitative elements has not yet been strongly demonstrated. In light of this example, we argue that CABs may not be able to perform such a role for a number of years after initial formation, making it an unsuitable responsibility for many short-term CABs. PMID:23725206

  7. Epidemiology and control of human granulocytic anaplasmosis: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Jin, Hongtao; Wei, Feng; Liu, Quan; Qian, Jun

    2012-04-01

    Granulocytic anaplasmosis caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum is an emerging tick-borne zoonosis worldwide. The obligate intracellular pathogen is transmitted by Ixodes ticks and infects neutrophils in humans and animals, resulting in clinical symptoms ranging from asymptomatic seroconversion to mild, severe, or fatal disease. Since the initial description of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) in the United States in 1990, HGA has been increasingly recognized in America, Europe, and Asia. This review describes the epidemiology, diagnosis, and treatment of HGA and provides background information on the potential vectors and reservoirs of A. phagocytophilum. PMID:22217177

  8. The forecast effectiveness of mining exploitation effects on the exploited area conducted with the use of Bialek`s formulas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orwat, Justyna

    2016-06-01

    The article presents the results of numerical calculations conducted with the use of a computer programme EDN - OPN for forecasting permanent deformations of a mining area being the result of the underground exploitation of coal deposits. The theoretical values of basic deformation indicators (decreases, inclinations, curvatures, displacements and horizontal strains) were determined with the use of Bialek`s formulas. They were subsequently juxtaposed with the practical values obtained thanks to the geodetic measurements conducted in the years 2001-2011 on the established observation line. The evaluation of the effectiveness of the conducted forecast of effects of the mining exploitation was carried out on this basis.

  9. The Sexual Exploitation of Missing Children: A Research Review.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hotaling, Gerald T.; Finkelhor, David

    This paper evaluates current knowledge about the prevalence, dynamics, and short- and long-term effects of sexual exploitation among missing children. It is based upon empirical research findings from books, papers presented at professional meetings, doctoral dissertations, works in progress, and more than 75 articles in professional journals.…

  10. Bats track and exploit changes in insect pest populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The role of bats or any generalist predator in suppressing prey populations depends on the predator’s ability to exploit available prey in space and time. Using a qPCR faecal DNA assay, we document significant association between numbers of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) consumin...

  11. Risk assessment by dynamic representation of vulnerability, exploitation, and impact

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cam, Hasan

    2015-05-01

    Assessing and quantifying cyber risk accurately in real-time is essential to providing security and mission assurance in any system and network. This paper presents a modeling and dynamic analysis approach to assessing cyber risk of a network in real-time by representing dynamically its vulnerabilities, exploitations, and impact using integrated Bayesian network and Markov models. Given the set of vulnerabilities detected by a vulnerability scanner in a network, this paper addresses how its risk can be assessed by estimating in real-time the exploit likelihood and impact of vulnerability exploitation on the network, based on real-time observations and measurements over the network. The dynamic representation of the network in terms of its vulnerabilities, sensor measurements, and observations is constructed dynamically using the integrated Bayesian network and Markov models. The transition rates of outgoing and incoming links of states in hidden Markov models are used in determining exploit likelihood and impact of attacks, whereas emission rates help quantify the attack states of vulnerabilities. Simulation results show the quantification and evolving risk scores over time for individual and aggregated vulnerabilities of a network.

  12. Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and the School Nurse

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grace, Lisa Goldblatt; Starck, Maureen; Potenza, Jane; Kenney, Patricia A.; Sheetz, Anne H.

    2012-01-01

    As trusted health professionals in the school setting, school nurses are well positioned to identify students who may be victims of commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC). However, until recently this issue has been clouded by lack of awareness, stigma, and/or denial. Since nationally the average age of entry for girls into the…

  13. Malware Sandbox Analysis for Secure Observation of Vulnerability Exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshioka, Katsunari; Inoue, Daisuke; Eto, Masashi; Hoshizawa, Yuji; Nogawa, Hiroki; Nakao, Koji

    Exploiting vulnerabilities of remote systems is one of the fundamental behaviors of malware that determines their potential hazards. Understanding what kind of propagation tactics each malware uses is essential in incident response because such information directly links with countermeasures such as writing a signature for IDS. Although recently malware sandbox analysis has been studied intensively, little work is done on securely observing the vulnerability exploitation by malware. In this paper, we propose a novel sandbox analysis method for securely observing malware's vulnerability exploitation in a totally isolated environment. In our sandbox, we prepare two victim hosts. We first execute the sample malware on one of these hosts and then let it attack the other host which is running multiple vulnerable services. As a simple realization of the proposed method, we have implemented a sandbox using Nepenthes, a low-interaction honeypot, as the second victim. Because Nepenthes can emulate a variety of vulnerable services, we can efficiently observe the propagation of sample malware. In the experiments, among 382 samples whose scan capabilities are confirmed, 381 samples successfully started exploiting vulnerabilities of the second victim. This indicates the certain level of feasibility of the proposed method.

  14. Exploiting link dynamics in LEO-to-ground communications

    SciTech Connect

    Palmer, Joseph Mcrae; Caffrey, Michael P

    2009-01-01

    The high dynamics of the LEO-to-ground radio channel are described. An analysis shows how current satellite radio systems largely underutilize the available radio link, and that a radio that can adaptively vary the bit rate can more fully exploit it, resulting in increased data throughput and improved power efficiency. We propose one method for implementing the adaptivity, and present simulation results.

  15. Key points in biotechnological patents to be exploited.

    PubMed

    García, Alfredo Mateos; López-Moya, José Rafael; Ramos, Patricia

    2013-08-01

    Patents in some biotechnological fields are controversial. Despite this fact, the number of patent applications increases every year. Total revenues in the global biotechnology market are expected to increase in the middle term. Nowadays, the bioeconomy is an important socio-economic area, which is reflected in the number of firms dedicated to or using biotechnology. The exploitation of biotechnological patents is an essential task in the management of intellectual capital. This paper explains the multiplicity of factors that influence the exploitation of biotechnological patents; specifically, the internal and external key points of patents exploitation. The external determining factors for patents are: (i) the market need for biotechnological products and services, (ii) the importance of the freedom to operate analysis before entering the market, and (iii) efficiency in prosecution by Patent Offices. This paper primarily focuses on the internal determining factors, more particularly, the characteristics that the patent's owner must take into consideration in order to have a strong, broad subject-matter in the granted patent. The experimentation needed to obtain an adequate scope of the subject- matter in the claims is a critical issue in the exploitation of a patent or patent application. PMID:23848273

  16. Exploitation of commercial remote sensing images: reality ignored?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, Paul C.

    1999-12-01

    The remote sensing market is on the verge of being awash in commercial high-resolution images. Market estimates are based on the growing numbers of planned commercial remote sensing electro-optical, radar, and hyperspectral satellites and aircraft. EarthWatch, Space Imaging, SPOT, and RDL among others are all working towards launch and service of one to five meter panchromatic or radar-imaging satellites. Additionally, new advances in digital air surveillance and reconnaissance systems, both manned and unmanned, are also expected to expand the geospatial customer base. Regardless of platform, image type, or location, each system promises images with some combination of increased resolution, greater spectral coverage, reduced turn-around time (request-to- delivery), and/or reduced image cost. For the most part, however, market estimates for these new sources focus on the raw digital images (from collection to the ground station) while ignoring the requirements for a processing and exploitation infrastructure comprised of exploitation tools, exploitation training, library systems, and image management systems. From this it would appear the commercial imaging community has failed to learn the hard lessons of national government experience choosing instead to ignore reality and replicate the bias of collection over processing and exploitation. While this trend may be not impact the small quantity users that exist today it will certainly adversely affect the mid- to large-sized users of the future.

  17. Confirmatory Factor Analysis of Perceived Exploitation of College Athletes Questionnaire

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Rheenen, Derek; Atwood, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    The exploitation of college athletes has been a topic of controversy within American higher education for over half of a century. Especially in the revenue-generating sports of men's basketball and football, critics have highlighted the surplus gains expropriated by colleges and universities on the backs of these young men, who are…

  18. Exploiting Patient Labour at Kew Cottages, Australia, 1887-1950

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Monk, Lee-Ann

    2010-01-01

    This article examines the exploitation of patient labour at Kew Cottages, Australia's first purpose-built state institution for people with learning disabilities. Analysing historical evidence for the period 1887-1950 shows that unpaid patient labour contributed significantly to the economy of the Cottages and so to the government department of…

  19. Commercial sexual exploitation of children and the school nurse.

    PubMed

    Grace, Lisa Goldblatt; Starck, Maureen; Potenza, Jane; Kenney, Patricia A; Sheetz, Anne H

    2012-12-01

    As trusted health professionals in the school setting, school nurses are well positioned to identify students who may be victims of commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC). However, until recently this issue has been clouded by lack of awareness, stigma, and/or denial. Since nationally the average age of entry for girls into the commercial sex industry (specifically prostitution) is 12-15 years old, many of these young people continue to attend school although attendance may be sporadic. Additional continuing education is needed to increase school nurses' awareness that these young victims might be in their practices, whether they are located in urban, rural, or suburban communities. As primary sources of health care for children throughout the United States, school nurses have a pivotal role in helping an exploited girl move beyond invisibility to a path of safety and support-and a new life. PMID:22627024

  20. Exploitation of puddles for breakthroughs in claustrum research

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, John-Irwin; Fenske, Brian A.; Jaswa, Amar S.; Morris, John A.

    2014-01-01

    Since its first identification as a thin strip of gray matter enclosed between stretches of neighboring fiber bundles, the claustrum has been considered impossible to study by many modern techniques that need a certain roominess of tissue for their application. Known as the front wall, vormauren in German from 1822, and still called avant-mur in French, we here propose a means for breaking into and through this wall, by utilizing the instances where the claustral tissue itself has broken free into more spacious dimensions. This has occurred several times in the evolution of modern mammals, and all that needs be done is to exploit these natural expansions in order to take advantage of a great panoply of technological advances now at our disposal. So here we review the kinds of breakout “puddles” that await productive exploitation, to bring our knowledge of structure and function up to the level enjoyed for other more accessible regions of the brain. PMID:24860441

  1. Exploiting cantilever curvature for noise reduction in atomic force microscopy.

    PubMed

    Labuda, Aleksander; Grütter, Peter H

    2011-01-01

    Optical beam deflection is a widely used method for detecting the deflection of atomic force microscope (AFM) cantilevers. This paper presents a first order derivation for the angular detection noise density which determines the lower limit for deflection sensing. Surprisingly, the cantilever radius of curvature, commonly not considered, plays a crucial role and can be exploited to decrease angular detection noise. We demonstrate a reduction in angular detection shot noise of more than an order of magnitude on a home-built AFM with a commercial 450 μm long cantilever by exploiting the optical properties of the cantilever curvature caused by the reflective gold coating. Lastly, we demonstrate how cantilever curvature can be responsible for up to 45% of the variability in the measured sensitivity of cantilevers on commercially available AFMs. PMID:21280834

  2. Lunar Resource Exploitation with Team Hakuto Swarm Rovers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acierno, Kyle

    2016-07-01

    While much research has been done on the exploration, extraction and utilization of the Moon's resources, little attention has been given to exploring the economic opportunities that exist in the exploitation of those resources with the use of swam rovers. In order to develop a holistic view of lunar resources, this paper will first investigate the most important volatiles and minerals that are known to exist on the Moon. Next, Google Lunar XPRIZE Team Hakuto's technology and current robotic set up will be given. Finally, TEAM HAKUTO's 2017 Lunar mission plan will be outlined, providing an overview of future architectures using future swarm robotics to search for, map and eventually exploit the resources and volatiles.

  3. Wireless Jamming Localization by Exploiting Nodes' Hearing Ranges

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zhenhua; Liu, Hongbo; Xu, Wenyuan; Chen, Yingying

    Jamming attacks are especially harmful when ensuring the dependability of wireless communication. Finding the position of a jammer will enable the network to actively exploit a wide range of defense strategies. Thus, in this paper, we focus on developing mechanisms to localize a jammer. We first conduct jamming effect analysis to examine how a hearing range, e.g., the area from which a node can successfully receive and decode the packet, alters with the jammer's location and transmission power. Then, we show that the affected hearing range can be estimated purely by examining the network topology changes caused by jamming attacks. As such, we solve the jammer location estimation by constructing a least-squares problem, which exploits the changes of the hearing ranges. Compared with our previous iterative-search-based virtual force algorithm, our proposed hearing-range-based algorithm exhibits lower computational cost (i.e., one-step instead of iterative searches) and higher localization accuracy.

  4. Online child sexual exploitation: prevalence, process, and offender characteristics.

    PubMed

    Kloess, Juliane A; Beech, Anthony R; Harkins, Leigh

    2014-04-01

    This review provides an overview of current knowledge and understanding of the process of sexual grooming and exploitation of children via the Internet. Specifically, the prevalence of online sexual grooming and exploitation is explored as well as associated challenges relating to the identification of its occurrence. This is complemented by a detailed outline and discussion of the process, both online and in the physical world, and legal responses to this phenomenon. A number of factors are examined to provide an explanation of the facilitating and contributing role they may play in offense processes online. Finally, current typologies are discussed in relation to characteristics of Internet offenders in general and "groomers"/chat room offenders specifically. This review concludes by offering suggestions for future research. PMID:24608540

  5. SAR data exploitation: computational technology enabling SAR ATR algorithm development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majumder, Uttam K.; Casteel, Curtis H., Jr.; Buxa, Peter; Minardi, Michael J.; Zelnio, Edmund G.; Nehrbass, John W.

    2007-04-01

    A fundamental issue with synthetic aperture radar (SAR) application development is data processing and exploitation in real-time or near real-time. The power of high performance computing (HPC) clusters, FPGA, and the IBM Cell processor presents new algorithm development possibilities that have not been fully leveraged. In this paper, we will illustrate the capability of SAR data exploitation which was impractical over the last decade due to computing limitations. We can envision that SAR imagery encompassing city size coverage at extremely high levels of fidelity could be processed at near-real time using the above technologies to empower the warfighter with access to critical information for the war on terror, homeland defense, as well as urban warfare.

  6. Exploitation of puddles for breakthroughs in claustrum research.

    PubMed

    Johnson, John-Irwin; Fenske, Brian A; Jaswa, Amar S; Morris, John A

    2014-01-01

    Since its first identification as a thin strip of gray matter enclosed between stretches of neighboring fiber bundles, the claustrum has been considered impossible to study by many modern techniques that need a certain roominess of tissue for their application. Known as the front wall, vormauren in German from 1822, and still called avant-mur in French, we here propose a means for breaking into and through this wall, by utilizing the instances where the claustral tissue itself has broken free into more spacious dimensions. This has occurred several times in the evolution of modern mammals, and all that needs be done is to exploit these natural expansions in order to take advantage of a great panoply of technological advances now at our disposal. So here we review the kinds of breakout "puddles" that await productive exploitation, to bring our knowledge of structure and function up to the level enjoyed for other more accessible regions of the brain. PMID:24860441

  7. The ESA Scientific Exploitation of Operational Missions element

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desnos, Yves-Louis; Regner, Peter; Delwart, Steven; Benveniste, Jerome; Engdahl, Marcus; Zehner, Claus; Mathieu, Pierre-Philippe; Bojkov, Bojan; Gascon, Ferran; Donlon, Craig; Davidson, Malcolm; Goryl, Philippe; Pinnock, Simon

    2015-04-01

    SEOM is a program element within the fourth period (2013-2017) of ESA's Earth Observation Envelope Programme (http://seom.esa.int/). The prime objective is to federate, support and expand the international research community that the ERS,ENVISAT and the Envelope programmes have built up over the last 25 years. It aims to further strengthen the leadership of the European Earth Observation research community by enabling them to extensively exploit future European operational EO missions. SEOM will enable the science community to address new scientific research that are opened by free and open access to data from operational EO missions. Based on community-wide recommendations for actions on key research issues, gathered through a series of international thematic workshops and scientific user consultation meetings, a work plan has been established and is approved every year by ESA Members States. The 2015 SEOM work plan is covering the organisation of three Science users consultation workshops for Sentinel1/3/5P , the launch of new R&D studies for scientific exploitation of the Sentinels, the development of open-source multi-mission scientific toolboxes, the organisation of advanced international training courses, summer schools and educational materials, as well as activities for promoting the scientific use of EO data. The first SEOM projects have been tendered since 2013 including the development of Sentinel toolboxes, advanced INSAR algorithms for Sentinel-1 TOPS data exploitation, Improved Atmospheric Spectroscopic data-base (IAS), as well as grouped studies for Sentinel-1, -2, and -3 land and ocean applications and studies for exploiting the synergy between the Sentinels. The status and first results from these SEOM projects will be presented and an outlook for upcoming SEOM studies will be given.

  8. Combating sexual exploitation at the macro and micro levels.

    PubMed

    Perpinan, M S

    1998-01-01

    The Third World Movement against the Exploitation of Women (TW-MAE-W) is an international nongovernmental organization based in the Philippines which conducts advocacy upon global issues such as the root causes of exploitation and campaigns against sex tourism and military prostitution. TW-MAE-W began providing direct services at the local level in 1987, and now has 7 drop-in centers and 3 homes around the country, run by 35 female staff members. In addition, the Bethany Transition Home in Quezon City, Manila, houses 10-20 women, all who have outside employment. The girls and women who come to TW-MAE-W's facilities have all been exploited in some way. For example, they may be battered wives, women who have experienced incest, or girls who have been sold or tricked into prostitution. They arrive after either calling a telephone hotline on their own or being referred by social workers and nongovernmental organizations. Following an initial 3-month course of recuperation, center residents are helped to either continue their academic training, receive vocational training, or find a job. Basic health services are provided to the residents and drop-in center clients. PMID:12348690

  9. Architectures for intelligent robots in the age of exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, E. L.; Ali, S. M. Alhaj; Ghaffari, M.; Liao, X.; Sarkar, Saurabh; Mathur, Kovid; Tennety, Srinivas

    2009-01-01

    History shows that problems that cause human confusion often lead to inventions to solve the problems, which then leads to exploitation of the invention, creating a confusion-invention-exploitation cycle. Robotics, which started as a new type of universal machine implemented with a computer controlled mechanism in the 1960's, has progressed from an Age of Over-expectation, a Time of Nightmare, an Age of Realism, and is now entering the Age of Exploitation. The purpose of this paper is to propose architecture for the modern intelligent robot in which sensors permit adaptation to changes in the environment are combined with a "creative controller" that permits adaptive critic, neural network learning, and a dynamic database that permits task selection and criteria adjustment. This ideal model may be compared to various controllers that have been implemented using Ethernet, CAN Bus and JAUS architectures and to modern, embedded, mobile computing architectures. Several prototypes and simulations are considered in view of peta-computing. The significance of this comparison is that it provides some insights that may be useful in designing future robots for various manufacturing, medical, and defense applications.

  10. Neanderthal exploitation of ibex and chamois in southwestern Europe.

    PubMed

    Yravedra, José; Cobo-Sánchez, Lucía

    2015-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that Neanderthals had a diverse and flexible diet. They exploited a wide range of resources from large proboscideans to small animals like turtles, rabbits, and marine species. Here, we discuss the importance of ibex and chamois in Neanderthal hunting strategies. The exploitation of both animals has traditionally been regarded as typical of Homo sapiens hunting behavior but was not a feature of Neanderthal behavior, which was thought to have focused on other kinds of game like deer, horses or large bovids. Our analysis of an extensive sample of Middle Paleolithic sites with faunal remains in the Iberian Peninsula reveals that Iberian ibex and chamois were frequently present throughout this period. Statistical analyses allowed us to assess the conditions that might have favored the presence or absence of these animals in the sites, while the taphonomic analyses enabled us to address the issue of whether ibex and chamois were indeed hunted by Neanderthals in the Iberian Peninsula. Our results indicate a better representation of both species in rocky and mountainous areas. The taphonomy of some sites reveals that chamois and ibex were hunted by Neanderthals, who showed great adaptive capacities to a wide variety of environments, including mountainous habitats. In contrast, other sites with favorable ecological conditions for ibex and chamois where these animals were not exploited by Neanderthals, who chose to hunt other species like deer, horses or aurochs, suggest behavioral complexity and large versatility. PMID:25481629

  11. Harsh childhood environmental characteristics predict exploitation and retaliation in humans

    PubMed Central

    McCullough, Michael E.; Pedersen, Eric J.; Schroder, Jaclyn M.; Tabak, Benjamin A.; Carver, Charles S.

    2013-01-01

    Across and within societies, people vary in their propensities towards exploitative and retaliatory defection in potentially cooperative interaction. We hypothesized that this variation reflects adaptive responses to variation in cues during childhood that life will be harsh, unstable and short—cues that probabilistically indicate that it is in one's fitness interests to exploit co-operators and to retaliate quickly against defectors. Here, we show that childhood exposure to family neglect, conflict and violence, and to neighbourhood crime, were positively associated for men (but not women) with exploitation of an interaction partner and retaliatory defection after that partner began to defect. The associations between childhood environment and both forms of defection for men appeared to be mediated by participants' endorsement of a ‘code of honour’. These results suggest that individual differences in mutual benefit cooperation are not merely due to genetic noise, random developmental variation or the operation of domain-general cultural learning mechanisms, but rather, might reflect the adaptive calibration of social strategies to local social–ecological conditions. PMID:23118435

  12. Relativistic quantum metrology: exploiting relativity to improve quantum measurement technologies.

    PubMed

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Bruschi, David Edward; Sabín, Carlos; Adesso, Gerardo; Fuentes, Ivette

    2014-01-01

    We present a framework for relativistic quantum metrology that is useful for both Earth-based and space-based technologies. Quantum metrology has been so far successfully applied to design precision instruments such as clocks and sensors which outperform classical devices by exploiting quantum properties. There are advanced plans to implement these and other quantum technologies in space, for instance Space-QUEST and Space Optical Clock projects intend to implement quantum communications and quantum clocks at regimes where relativity starts to kick in. However, typical setups do not take into account the effects of relativity on quantum properties. To include and exploit these effects, we introduce techniques for the application of metrology to quantum field theory. Quantum field theory properly incorporates quantum theory and relativity, in particular, at regimes where space-based experiments take place. This framework allows for high precision estimation of parameters that appear in quantum field theory including proper times and accelerations. Indeed, the techniques can be applied to develop a novel generation of relativistic quantum technologies for gravimeters, clocks and sensors. As an example, we present a high precision device which in principle improves the state-of-the-art in quantum accelerometers by exploiting relativistic effects. PMID:24851858

  13. Relativistic Quantum Metrology: Exploiting relativity to improve quantum measurement technologies

    PubMed Central

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Bruschi, David Edward; Sabín, Carlos; Adesso, Gerardo; Fuentes, Ivette

    2014-01-01

    We present a framework for relativistic quantum metrology that is useful for both Earth-based and space-based technologies. Quantum metrology has been so far successfully applied to design precision instruments such as clocks and sensors which outperform classical devices by exploiting quantum properties. There are advanced plans to implement these and other quantum technologies in space, for instance Space-QUEST and Space Optical Clock projects intend to implement quantum communications and quantum clocks at regimes where relativity starts to kick in. However, typical setups do not take into account the effects of relativity on quantum properties. To include and exploit these effects, we introduce techniques for the application of metrology to quantum field theory. Quantum field theory properly incorporates quantum theory and relativity, in particular, at regimes where space-based experiments take place. This framework allows for high precision estimation of parameters that appear in quantum field theory including proper times and accelerations. Indeed, the techniques can be applied to develop a novel generation of relativistic quantum technologies for gravimeters, clocks and sensors. As an example, we present a high precision device which in principle improves the state-of-the-art in quantum accelerometers by exploiting relativistic effects. PMID:24851858

  14. Distinct Urban Mines: Exploiting secondary resources in unique anthropogenic spaces.

    PubMed

    Ongondo, F O; Williams, I D; Whitlock, G

    2015-11-01

    Fear of scarcity of resources highlight the need to exploit secondary materials from urban mines in the anthroposphere. Analogous to primary mines rich in one type of material (e.g. copper, gold, etc.), some urban mines are unique/distinct. We introduce, illustrate and discuss the concept of Distinct Urban Mines (DUM). Using the example of a university DUM in the UK, analogous to a primary mine, we illustrate potential product/material yields in respect of size, concentration and spatial location of the mine. Product ownership and replacement cycles for 17 high-value electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) among students showed that 20 tonnes of valuable e-waste were in stockpile in this DUM and a further 87 tonnes would 'soon' be available for exploitation. We address the opportunities and challenges of exploiting DUMs and conclude that they are readily available reservoirs for resource recovery. Two original contributions arise from this work: (i) a novel approach to urban mining with a potential for maximising resource recovery within the anthroposphere is conceptualised; and (ii) previously unavailable data for high-value products for a typical university DUM are presented and analysed. PMID:26066575

  15. Relativistic Quantum Metrology: Exploiting relativity to improve quantum measurement technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmadi, Mehdi; Bruschi, David Edward; Sabín, Carlos; Adesso, Gerardo; Fuentes, Ivette

    2014-05-01

    We present a framework for relativistic quantum metrology that is useful for both Earth-based and space-based technologies. Quantum metrology has been so far successfully applied to design precision instruments such as clocks and sensors which outperform classical devices by exploiting quantum properties. There are advanced plans to implement these and other quantum technologies in space, for instance Space-QUEST and Space Optical Clock projects intend to implement quantum communications and quantum clocks at regimes where relativity starts to kick in. However, typical setups do not take into account the effects of relativity on quantum properties. To include and exploit these effects, we introduce techniques for the application of metrology to quantum field theory. Quantum field theory properly incorporates quantum theory and relativity, in particular, at regimes where space-based experiments take place. This framework allows for high precision estimation of parameters that appear in quantum field theory including proper times and accelerations. Indeed, the techniques can be applied to develop a novel generation of relativistic quantum technologies for gravimeters, clocks and sensors. As an example, we present a high precision device which in principle improves the state-of-the-art in quantum accelerometers by exploiting relativistic effects.

  16. Exploitation of marine gas hydrates: Benefits and risks (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallmann, K. J.

    2013-12-01

    Vast amounts of natural gas are stored in marine gas hydrates deposited at continental margins. The global inventory of carbon bound as methane in gas hydrates is currently estimated as 1000 × 500 Gt. Large-scale national research projects located mostly in South-East Asia but also in North America and Europe are aiming to exploit these ice-like solids as new unconventional resource of natural gas. Japan, South Korea and other Asian countries are taking the lead because their national waters harbor exploitable gas hydrate deposits which could be developed to reduce the dependency of these nations on costly LGN imports. In 2013, the first successful production test was performed off Japan at water depths of ca. 1000 m demonstrating that natural gas can be released and produced from marine hydrates by lowering the pressure in the sub-seabed hydrate reservoirs. In an alternative approach, CO2 from coal power plans and other industrial sources is used to release natural gas (methane) from hydrates while CO2 is bound and stored in the sub-surface as solid hydrate. These new approaches and technologies are still in an early pre-commercial phase; the costs of field development and gas production exceed the value of natural gas being produced from the slowly dissociating hydrates. However, new technologies are currently under development in the German SUGAR project and elsewhere to reduce costs and enhance gas production rates such that gas hydrates may become commercially exploitable over the coming decade(s). The exploitation of marine gas hydrates may help to reduce CO2 emissions from the fossil fuel sector if the produced natural gas is used to replace coal and/or LNG. Hydrate development could also provide important incentives for carbon capture technologies since CO2 can be used to produce natural gas from hydrates. However, leakage of gas may occur during the production process while slope failure may be induced by the accompanying dissociation/conversion of gas

  17. Diversity of rickettsial pathogens in Columbian black-tailed deer and their associated keds (Diptera: Hippoboscidae) and ticks (Acari: Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Foley, Janet E; Hasty, Jeomhee M; Lane, Robert S

    2016-06-01

    Cervids host multiple species of ixodid ticks, other ectoparasites, and a variety of rickettsiae. However, diagnostic test cross-reactivity has precluded understanding the specific role of deer in rickettsial ecology. In our survey of 128 Columbian black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus (Richardson)) and their arthropod parasites from two northern Californian herds, combined with reports from the literature, we identified four distinct Anaplasma spp. and one Ehrlichia species. Two keds, Lipoptena depressa (Say) and Neolipoptena ferrisi Bequaert, and two ixodid ticks, Ixodes pacificus Cooley and Kohls and Dermacentor occidentalis Marx, were removed from deer. One D. occidentalis was PCR-positive for E. chaffeensis; because it was also PCR-positive for Anaplasma sp., this is an Anaplasma/Ehrlichia co-infection prevalence of 4.3%. 29% of L. depressa, 23% of D. occidentalis, and 14% of deer were PCR-positive for Anaplasma spp. DNA sequencing confirmed A. bovis and A. ovis infections in D. occidentalis, A. odocoilei in deer and keds, and Anaplasma phagocytophilum strain WI-1 in keds and deer. This is the first report of Anaplasma spp. in a North America deer ked, and begs the question whether L. depressa may be a competent vector of Anaplasma spp. or merely acquire such bacteria while feeding on rickettsemic deer. PMID:27232123

  18. Enhancing data exploitation through DTN-based data transmission protocols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daglis, Ioannis A.; Tsaoussidis, Vassilis; Rontogiannis, Athanasios; Balasis, Georgios; Keramitsoglou, Iphigenia; Paronis, Dimitrios; Sykioti, Olga; Tsinganos, Antonios

    2014-05-01

    Data distribution and data access are major issues in space sciences and geosciences as they strongly influence the degree of data exploitation. Processing and analysis of large volumes of Earth observation and space/planetary data face two major impediments: limited access capabilities due to narrow connectivity windows between spacecraft and ground receiving stations and lack of sufficient communication and dissemination mechanisms between space data receiving centres and the end-user community. Real-time data assimilation that would be critical in a number of forecasting capabilities is particularly affected by such limitations. The FP7-Space project "Space-Data Routers" (SDR) has the aim of allowing space agencies, academic institutes and research centres to disseminate/share space data generated by single or multiple missions, in an efficient, secure and automated manner. The approach of SDR relies on space internetworking - and in particular on Delay-Tolerant Networking (DTN), which marks the new era in space communications, unifies space and earth communication infrastructures and delivers a set of tools and protocols for space-data exploitation. The project includes the definition of limitations imposed by typical space mission scenarios in which the National Observatory of Athens is currently involved, including space and planetary exploration, as well as satellite-supported geoscience applications. In this paper, we present the mission scenarios, the SDR-application and the evaluation of the associated impact from the space-data router enhancements. The work leading to this paper has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7-SPACE-2010-1) under grant agreement no. 263330 for the SDR (Space-Data Routers for Exploiting Space Data) collaborative research project. This paper reflects only the authors' views and the Union is not liable for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.

  19. Biosonar navigation above water II: exploiting mirror images.

    PubMed

    Genzel, Daria; Hoffmann, Susanne; Prosch, Selina; Firzlaff, Uwe; Wiegrebe, Lutz

    2015-02-15

    As in vision, acoustic signals can be reflected by a smooth surface creating an acoustic mirror image. Water bodies represent the only naturally occurring horizontal and acoustically smooth surfaces. Echolocating bats flying over smooth water bodies encounter echo-acoustic mirror images of objects above the surface. Here, we combined an electrophysiological approach with a behavioral experimental paradigm to investigate whether bats can exploit echo-acoustic mirror images for navigation and how these mirrorlike echo-acoustic cues are encoded in their auditory cortex. In an obstacle-avoidance task where the obstacles could only be detected via their echo-acoustic mirror images, most bats spontaneously exploited these cues for navigation. Sonar ensonifications along the bats' flight path revealed conspicuous changes of the reflection patterns with slightly increased target strengths at relatively long echo delays corresponding to the longer acoustic paths from the mirrored obstacles. Recordings of cortical spatiotemporal response maps (STRMs) describe the tuning of a unit across the dimensions of elevation and time. The majority of cortical single and multiunits showed a special spatiotemporal pattern of excitatory areas in their STRM indicating a preference for echoes with (relative to the setup dimensions) long delays and, interestingly, from low elevations. This neural preference could effectively encode a reflection pattern as it would be perceived by an echolocating bat detecting an object mirrored from below. The current study provides both behavioral and neurophysiological evidence that echo-acoustic mirror images can be exploited by bats for obstacle avoidance. This capability effectively supports echo-acoustic navigation in highly cluttered natural habitats. PMID:25411457

  20. The strv 1 microsatellite semes: Exploiting the geosynchronous transfer orbit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blott, R. J.; Wells, N. S.; Eves, J.

    Following 3 successful years in orbit, the UK Defence Evaluation and Research Agency's two Space Technology Research Vehicle microsatellites (STRV) 1 a&b will be followed by a second mission. STRV 1 c&d are now in construction for a planned launch in 1999. The new mission, which includes 22 experimental payloads and developmental spacecraft bus technologies from European, US and Canadian military, civil and commercial sponsors, exploits the Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) to offer an affordable, working space research tool for both government and industry. The STRV 1 programme objective is to promote the enhancement of military and civil space communications, remote sensing and navigation capabilities at reduced cost and risk. Additional aims are to help industry to achieve commercial benefit from investment in emerging technologies and to develop the synergy between government, commercial and civilian space applications. The paper explains how STRV 1 exploits the variable altitude and high radiation environment of GTO to investigate the performance of emerging technologies and techniques. This includes the accelerated life testing of components and materials, such as infra-red detectors, advanced microprocessors and solar cell technologies, and the prototyping of new techniques to improve communications and spacecraft autonomy. Experiments include implementing a secure version of the Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) packet telecommand and telemetry standards, further development of the Internet-based Space Communication Protocol Standards (SCPS) and evaluating the exploitation of the Global Positioning System (GPS) in geosynchronous orbit. The new mission also builds on and extends the comprehensive environmental monitoring achieved by STRV 1 a&b.

  1. Widespread exploitation of the honeybee by early Neolithic farmers.

    PubMed

    Roffet-Salque, Mélanie; Regert, Martine; Evershed, Richard P; Outram, Alan K; Cramp, Lucy J E; Decavallas, Orestes; Dunne, Julie; Gerbault, Pascale; Mileto, Simona; Mirabaud, Sigrid; Pääkkönen, Mirva; Smyth, Jessica; Šoberl, Lucija; Whelton, Helen L; Alday-Ruiz, Alfonso; Asplund, Henrik; Bartkowiak, Marta; Bayer-Niemeier, Eva; Belhouchet, Lotfi; Bernardini, Federico; Budja, Mihael; Cooney, Gabriel; Cubas, Miriam; Danaher, Ed M; Diniz, Mariana; Domboróczki, László; Fabbri, Cristina; González-Urquijo, Jesus E; Guilaine, Jean; Hachi, Slimane; Hartwell, Barrie N; Hofmann, Daniela; Hohle, Isabel; Ibáñez, Juan J; Karul, Necmi; Kherbouche, Farid; Kiely, Jacinta; Kotsakis, Kostas; Lueth, Friedrich; Mallory, James P; Manen, Claire; Marciniak, Arkadiusz; Maurice-Chabard, Brigitte; Mc Gonigle, Martin A; Mulazzani, Simone; Özdoğan, Mehmet; Perić, Olga S; Perić, Slaviša R; Petrasch, Jörg; Pétrequin, Anne-Marie; Pétrequin, Pierre; Poensgen, Ulrike; Pollard, C Joshua; Poplin, François; Radi, Giovanna; Stadler, Peter; Stäuble, Harald; Tasić, Nenad; Urem-Kotsou, Dushka; Vuković, Jasna B; Walsh, Fintan; Whittle, Alasdair; Wolfram, Sabine; Zapata-Peña, Lydia; Zoughlami, Jamel

    2015-11-12

    The pressures on honeybee (Apis mellifera) populations, resulting from threats by modern pesticides, parasites, predators and diseases, have raised awareness of the economic importance and critical role this insect plays in agricultural societies across the globe. However, the association of humans with A. mellifera predates post-industrial-revolution agriculture, as evidenced by the widespread presence of ancient Egyptian bee iconography dating to the Old Kingdom (approximately 2400 BC). There are also indications of Stone Age people harvesting bee products; for example, honey hunting is interpreted from rock art in a prehistoric Holocene context and a beeswax find in a pre-agriculturalist site. However, when and where the regular association of A. mellifera with agriculturalists emerged is unknown. One of the major products of A. mellifera is beeswax, which is composed of a complex suite of lipids including n-alkanes, n-alkanoic acids and fatty acyl wax esters. The composition is highly constant as it is determined genetically through the insect's biochemistry. Thus, the chemical 'fingerprint' of beeswax provides a reliable basis for detecting this commodity in organic residues preserved at archaeological sites, which we now use to trace the exploitation by humans of A. mellifera temporally and spatially. Here we present secure identifications of beeswax in lipid residues preserved in pottery vessels of Neolithic Old World farmers. The geographical range of bee product exploitation is traced in Neolithic Europe, the Near East and North Africa, providing the palaeoecological range of honeybees during prehistory. Temporally, we demonstrate that bee products were exploited continuously, and probably extensively in some regions, at least from the seventh millennium cal BC, likely fulfilling a variety of technological and cultural functions. The close association of A. mellifera with Neolithic farming communities dates to the early onset of agriculture and may provide

  2. Human Collective Intelligence under Dual Exploration-Exploitation Dilemmas

    PubMed Central

    Toyokawa, Wataru; Kim, Hye-rin; Kameda, Tatsuya

    2014-01-01

    The exploration-exploitation dilemma is a recurrent adaptive problem for humans as well as non-human animals. Given a fixed time/energy budget, every individual faces a fundamental trade-off between exploring for better resources and exploiting known resources to optimize overall performance under uncertainty. Colonies of eusocial insects are known to solve this dilemma successfully via evolved coordination mechanisms that function at the collective level. For humans and other non-eusocial species, however, this dilemma operates within individuals as well as between individuals, because group members may be motivated to take excessive advantage of others' exploratory findings through social learning. Thus, even though social learning can reduce collective exploration costs, the emergence of disproportionate “information scroungers” may severely undermine its potential benefits. We investigated experimentally whether social learning opportunities might improve the performance of human participants working on a “multi-armed bandit” problem in groups, where they could learn about each other's past choice behaviors. Results showed that, even though information scroungers emerged frequently in groups, social learning opportunities reduced total group exploration time while increasing harvesting from better options, and consequentially improved collective performance. Surprisingly, enriching social information by allowing participants to observe others' evaluations of chosen options (e.g., Amazon's 5-star rating system) in addition to choice-frequency information had a detrimental impact on performance compared to the simpler situation with only the choice-frequency information. These results indicate that humans groups can handle the fundamental “dual exploration-exploitation dilemmas” successfully, and that social learning about simple choice-frequencies can help produce collective intelligence. PMID:24755892

  3. Entropy principle, non-regular processes, and generalized exploitation procedures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Triani, V.; Cimmelli, V. A.

    2012-06-01

    The classical Coleman-Noll approach to the exploitation of the entropy principle regards the classical balances of mass, linear and angular momentum and energy as differential constraints for the entropy inequality, and presupposes that the second law of thermodynamics is a restriction on the constitutive equations describing the material properties [B. D. Coleman and W. Noll, "The thermodynamics of elastic materials with heat conduction and viscosity," Arch. Rational Mech. Anal. 13, 167-178 (1963), 10.1007/BF01262690]. In 1996, Muschik and Ehrentraut proved that this presupposition may be confirmed by a rigorous proof, provided that an amendment to the classical second law of thermodynamics, which asserts that, except in equilibria, reversible process directions in state space do not exist, is postulated ["An amendment to the second law," J. Non-Equilib. Thermodyn. 21, 175-192 (1996), 10.1515/jnet.1996.21.2.175]. In their paper, the authors considered regular processes only. In a recent article [V. Triani and V. A. Cimmelli, "Interpretation of second law of thermodynamics in the presence of interfaces," Continuum. Mech. Thermodyn. 24, 165-174 (2012), 10.1007/s00161-011-0231-8], we proved that the result above remains valid in the presence of interfaces across which the unknown fields suffer jump discontinuities. Here, we show that the same conclusions achieved by Muschik and Ehrentraut and Triani and Cimmelli hold when the classical Coleman-Noll and Liu ["Method of Lagrange multipliers for exploitation of the entropy principle," Arch. Rational Mech. Anal. 46, 131-148 (1972), 10.1007/BF00250688] procedures for the exploitation of the second law, are generalized by considering also the gradients of the fundamental balance equations as constraints for the entropy inequality.

  4. Questioning 'black humour': racial exploitation, media and health.

    PubMed

    Hodgetts, Darrin; Stolte, Ottilie

    2009-07-01

    This commentary explores the relevance of media racism to health psychology. While supporting Dr Estacio's call for health psychologists to get involved in promoting social justice via the media, we propose that health psychologists should not overstate the negative influence of the media on racism in society. Media content is complex and contradictory. It contains both racist and anti-racist representations. Challenging racism requires a conceptualization of links between the representational spaces provided by the media and the everyday geographic places within which inter-personal interactions and exploitation occur. PMID:19515676

  5. Exploiting the Potential of Data Centers in the Smart Grid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xiaoying; Zhang, Yu-An; Liu, Xiaojing; Cao, Tengfei

    As the number of cloud computing data centers grows rapidly in recent years, from the perspective of smart grid, they are really large and noticeable electric load. In this paper, we focus on the important role and the potential of data centers as controllable loads in the smart grid. We reviewed relevant research in the area of letting data centers participate in the ancillary services market and demand response programs of the grid, and further investigate the possibility of exploiting the impact of data center placement on the grid. Various opportunities and challenges are summarized, which could provide more chances for researches to explore this field.

  6. XJava: Exploiting Parallelism with Object-Oriented Stream Programming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Otto, Frank; Pankratius, Victor; Tichy, Walter F.

    This paper presents the XJava compiler for parallel programs. It exploits parallelism based on an object-oriented stream programming paradigm. XJava extends Java with new parallel constructs that do not expose programmers to low-level details of parallel programming on shared memory machines. Tasks define composable parallel activities, and new operators allow an easier expression of parallel patterns, such as pipelines, divide and conquer, or master/worker. We also present an automatic run-time mechanism that extends our previous work to automatically map tasks and parallel statements to threads.

  7. On the Exploitation of Sensitivity Derivatives for Improving Sampling Methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cao, Yanzhao; Hussaini, M. Yousuff; Zang, Thomas A.

    2003-01-01

    Many application codes, such as finite-element structural analyses and computational fluid dynamics codes, are capable of producing many sensitivity derivatives at a small fraction of the cost of the underlying analysis. This paper describes a simple variance reduction method that exploits such inexpensive sensitivity derivatives to increase the accuracy of sampling methods. Three examples, including a finite-element structural analysis of an aircraft wing, are provided that illustrate an order of magnitude improvement in accuracy for both Monte Carlo and stratified sampling schemes.

  8. The ESA Scientific Exploitation of Operational Missions element, first results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desnos, Yves-Louis; Regner, Peter; Delwart, Steven; Benveniste, Jerome; Engdahl, Marcus; Mathieu, Pierre-Philippe; Gascon, Ferran; Donlon, Craig; Davidson, Malcolm; Pinnock, Simon; Foumelis, Michael; Ramoino, Fabrizio

    2016-04-01

    SEOM is a program element within the fourth period (2013-2017) of ESA's Earth Observation Envelope Programme (http://seom.esa.int/). The prime objective is to federate, support and expand the international research community that the ERS, ENVISAT and the Envelope programmes have built up over the last 25 years. It aims to further strengthen the leadership of the European Earth Observation research community by enabling them to extensively exploit future European operational EO missions. SEOM will enable the science community to address new scientific research that are opened by free and open access to data from operational EO missions. Based on community-wide recommendations for actions on key research issues, gathered through a series of international thematic workshops and scientific user consultation meetings, a work plan is established and is approved every year by ESA Members States. During 2015 SEOM, Science users consultation workshops have been organized for Sentinel1/3/5P ( Fringe, S3 Symposium and Atmospheric science respectively) , new R&D studies for scientific exploitation of the Sentinels have been launched ( S3 for Science SAR Altimetry and Ocean Color , S2 for Science,) , open-source multi-mission scientific toolboxes have been launched (in particular the SNAP/S1-2-3 Toolbox). In addition two advanced international training courses have been organized in Europe to exploit the new S1-A and S2-A data for Land and Ocean remote sensing (over 120 participants from 25 countries) as well as activities for promoting the first scientific results ( e.g. Chili Earthquake) . In addition the First EO Open Science 2.0 was organised at ESA in October 2015 with 225 participants from 31 countries bringing together young EO scientists and data scientists. During the conference precursor activities in EO Open Science and Innovation were presented, while developing a Roadmap preparing for future ESA scientific exploitation activities. Within the conference, the first

  9. Tickborne fever associated with abortion outbreak in dairy cows.

    PubMed

    2016-08-20

    Anaplasma phagocytophilum detected in aborting cows on rough grazingLead poisoning in bullocksPersistent bovine viral diarrhoea virus infection and colisepticaemia in a 20-hour-old calfAbortion due to bovine herpesvirus 1 in a four-year-old cowTickborne fever in lambsInfectious sinusitis due to Mycoplasma gallisepticum in pheasants These are among matters discussed in the disease surveillance report for May 2016 from SAC Consulting: Veterinary Services (SAC C VS). PMID:27550334

  10. Characterization of CRISPR RNA transcription by exploiting stranded metatranscriptomic data.

    PubMed

    Ye, Yuzhen; Zhang, Quan

    2016-07-01

    CRISPR-Cas systems are bacterial adaptive immune systems, each typically composed of a locus of cas genes and a CRISPR array of spacers flanked by repeats. Processed transcripts of CRISPR arrays (crRNAs) play important roles in the interference process mediated by these systems, guiding targeted immunity. Here we developed computational approaches that allow us to characterize the expression of many CRISPRs in their natural environments, using community RNA-seq (metatranscriptomic) data. By exploiting public human gut metatranscriptomic data sets, we studied the expression of 56 repeat-sequence types of CRISPRs, revealing that most CRISPRs are transcribed in one direction (producing crRNAs). In rarer cases, including a type II system associated with Bacteroides fragilis, CRISPRs are transcribed in both directions. Type III CRISPR-Cas systems were found in the microbiomes, but metatranscriptomic reads were barely found for their CRISPRs. We observed individual-level variation of the crRNA transcription, and an even greater transcription of a CRISPR from the antisense strand than the crRNA strand in one sample. The orientations of CRISPR expression implicated by metatranscriptomic data are largely in agreement with prior predictions for CRISPRs, with exceptions. Our study shows the promise of exploiting community RNA-seq data for investigating the transcription of CRISPR-Cas systems. PMID:27190232

  11. Characterization of CRISPR RNA transcription by exploiting stranded metatranscriptomic data

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Yuzhen; Zhang, Quan

    2016-01-01

    CRISPR–Cas systems are bacterial adaptive immune systems, each typically composed of a locus of cas genes and a CRISPR array of spacers flanked by repeats. Processed transcripts of CRISPR arrays (crRNAs) play important roles in the interference process mediated by these systems, guiding targeted immunity. Here we developed computational approaches that allow us to characterize the expression of many CRISPRs in their natural environments, using community RNA-seq (metatranscriptomic) data. By exploiting public human gut metatranscriptomic data sets, we studied the expression of 56 repeat-sequence types of CRISPRs, revealing that most CRISPRs are transcribed in one direction (producing crRNAs). In rarer cases, including a type II system associated with Bacteroides fragilis, CRISPRs are transcribed in both directions. Type III CRISPR–Cas systems were found in the microbiomes, but metatranscriptomic reads were barely found for their CRISPRs. We observed individual-level variation of the crRNA transcription, and an even greater transcription of a CRISPR from the antisense strand than the crRNA strand in one sample. The orientations of CRISPR expression implicated by metatranscriptomic data are largely in agreement with prior predictions for CRISPRs, with exceptions. Our study shows the promise of exploiting community RNA-seq data for investigating the transcription of CRISPR–Cas systems. PMID:27190232

  12. Herbivore exploits orally secreted bacteria to suppress plant defenses

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Seung Ho; Rosa, Cristina; Scully, Erin D.; Peiffer, Michelle; Tooker, John F.; Hoover, Kelli; Luthe, Dawn S.; Felton, Gary W.

    2013-01-01

    Induced plant defenses in response to herbivore attack are modulated by cross-talk between jasmonic acid (JA)- and salicylic acid (SA)-signaling pathways. Oral secretions from some insect herbivores contain effectors that overcome these antiherbivore defenses. Herbivores possess diverse microbes in their digestive systems and these microbial symbionts can modify plant–insect interactions; however, the specific role of herbivore-associated microbes in manipulating plant defenses remains unclear. Here, we demonstrate that Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) larvae exploit bacteria in their oral secretions to suppress antiherbivore defenses in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum). We found that antibiotic-untreated larvae decreased production of JA and JA-responsive antiherbivore defenses, but increased SA accumulation and SA-responsive gene expression. Beetles benefit from down-regulating plant defenses by exhibiting enhanced larval growth. In SA-deficient plants, suppression was not observed, indicating that suppression of JA-regulated defenses depends on the SA-signaling pathway. Applying bacteria isolated from larval oral secretions to wounded plants confirmed that three microbial symbionts belonging to the genera Stenotrophomonas, Pseudomonas, and Enterobacter are responsible for defense suppression. Additionally, reinoculation of these bacteria to antibiotic-treated larvae restored their ability to suppress defenses. Flagellin isolated from Pseudomonas sp. was associated with defense suppression. Our findings show that the herbivore exploits symbiotic bacteria as a decoy to deceive plants into incorrectly perceiving the threat as microbial. By interfering with the normal perception of herbivory, beetles can evade antiherbivore defenses of its host. PMID:24019469

  13. Exploiting first-class arrays in Fortran for accelerator programming

    SciTech Connect

    Rasmussen, Craig E; Weseloh, Wayne N; Robey, Robert W; Matthew, Sottile J; Quinlan, Daniel; Overbye, Jeffrey

    2010-12-15

    Emerging architectures for high performance computing often are well suited to a data parallel programming model. This paper presents a simple programming methodology based on existing languages and compiler tools that allows programmers to take advantage of these systems. We will work with the array features of Fortran 90 to show how this infrequently exploited, standardized language feature is easily transformed to lower level accelerator code. Our transformations are based on a mapping from Fortran 90 to C++ code with OpenCL extensions. The sheer complexity of programming for clusters of many or multi-core processors with tens of millions threads of execution make the simplicity of the data parallel model attractive. Furthermore, the increasing complexity of todays applications (especially when convolved with the increasing complexity of the hardware) and the need for portability across hardware architectures make a higher-level and simpler programming model like data parallel attractive. The goal of this work has been to exploit source-to-source transformations that allow programmers to develop and maintain programs at a high-level of abstraction, without coding to a specific hardware architecture. Furthermore these transformations allow multiple hardware architectures to be targeted without changing the high-level source. It also removes the necessity for application programmers to understand details of the accelerator architecture or to know OpenCL.

  14. Exploitation of induced 2n-gametes for plant breeding.

    PubMed

    Younis, Adnan; Hwang, Yoon-Jung; Lim, Ki-Byung

    2014-02-01

    Unreduced gamete formation derived via abnormal meiotic cell division is an important approach to polyploidy breeding. This process is considered the main driving force in spontaneous polyploids formation in nature, but the potential application of these gametes to plant breeding has not been fully exploited. An effective mechanism for their artificial induction is needed to attain greater genetic variation and enable efficient use of unreduced gametes in breeding programs. Different approaches have been employed for 2n-pollen production including interspecific hybridization, manipulation of environmental factors and treatment with nitrous oxide, trifluralin, colchicine, oryzalin and other chemicals. These chemicals can act as a stimulus to produce viable 2n pollen; however, their exact mode of action, optimum concentration and developmental stages are still not known. Identification of efficient methods of inducing 2n-gamete formation will help increase pollen germination of sterile interspecific hybrids for inter-genomic recombination and introgression breeding to develop new polyploid cultivars and increase heterozygosity among plant populations. Additionally, the application of genomic tools and identification and isolation of genes and mechanisms involved in the induction of 2n-gamete will enable increased exploitation in different plant species, which will open new avenues for plant breeding. PMID:24311154

  15. Infomax Strategies for an Optimal Balance Between Exploration and Exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy, Gautam; Celani, Antonio; Vergassola, Massimo

    2016-06-01

    Proper balance between exploitation and exploration is what makes good decisions that achieve high reward, like payoff or evolutionary fitness. The Infomax principle postulates that maximization of information directs the function of diverse systems, from living systems to artificial neural networks. While specific applications turn out to be successful, the validity of information as a proxy for reward remains unclear. Here, we consider the multi-armed bandit decision problem, which features arms (slot-machines) of unknown probabilities of success and a player trying to maximize cumulative payoff by choosing the sequence of arms to play. We show that an Infomax strategy (Info-p) which optimally gathers information on the highest probability of success among the arms, saturates known optimal bounds and compares favorably to existing policies. Conversely, gathering information on the identity of the best arm in the bandit leads to a strategy that is vastly suboptimal in terms of payoff. The nature of the quantity selected for Infomax acquisition is then crucial for effective tradeoffs between exploration and exploitation.

  16. An automated data exploitation system for airborne sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Hai-Wen; McGurr, Mike

    2014-06-01

    Advanced wide area persistent surveillance (WAPS) sensor systems on manned or unmanned airborne vehicles are essential for wide-area urban security monitoring in order to protect our people and our warfighter from terrorist attacks. Currently, human (imagery) analysts process huge data collections from full motion video (FMV) for data exploitation and analysis (real-time and forensic), providing slow and inaccurate results. An Automated Data Exploitation System (ADES) is urgently needed. In this paper, we present a recently developed ADES for airborne vehicles under heavy urban background clutter conditions. This system includes four processes: (1) fast image registration, stabilization, and mosaicking; (2) advanced non-linear morphological moving target detection; (3) robust multiple target (vehicles, dismounts, and human) tracking (up to 100 target tracks); and (4) moving or static target/object recognition (super-resolution). Test results with real FMV data indicate that our ADES can reliably detect, track, and recognize multiple vehicles under heavy urban background clutters. Furthermore, our example shows that ADES as a baseline platform can provide capability for vehicle abnormal behavior detection to help imagery analysts quickly trace down potential threats and crimes.

  17. Noise-exploitation and adaptation in neuromorphic sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hindo, Thamira; Chakrabartty, Shantanu

    2012-04-01

    Even though current micro-nano fabrication technology has reached integration levels where ultra-sensitive sensors can be fabricated, the sensing performance (resolution per joule) of synthetic systems are still orders of magnitude inferior to those observed in neurobiology. For example, the filiform hairs in crickets operate at fundamental limits of noise; auditory sensors in a parasitoid fly can overcome fundamental limitations to precisely localize ultra-faint acoustic signatures. Even though many of these biological marvels have served as inspiration for different types of neuromorphic sensors, the main focus these designs have been to faithfully replicate the biological functionalities, without considering the constructive role of "noise". In man-made sensors device and sensor noise are typically considered as a nuisance, where as in neurobiology "noise" has been shown to be a computational aid that enables biology to sense and operate at fundamental limits of energy efficiency and performance. In this paper, we describe some of the important noise-exploitation and adaptation principles observed in neurobiology and how they can be systematically used for designing neuromorphic sensors. Our focus will be on two types of noise-exploitation principles, namely, (a) stochastic resonance; and (b) noise-shaping, which are unified within our previously reported framework called Σ▵ learning. As a case-study, we describe the application of Σ▵ learning for the design of a miniature acoustic source localizer whose performance matches that of its biological counterpart(Ormia Ochracea).

  18. Exploiting similarity in turbulent shear flows for turbulence modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Robinson, David F.; Harris, Julius E.; Hassan, H. A.

    1992-01-01

    It is well known that current k-epsilon models cannot predict the flow over a flat plate and its wake. In an effort to address this issue and other issues associated with turbulence closure, a new approach for turbulence modeling is proposed which exploits similarities in the flow field. Thus, if we consider the flow over a flat plate and its wake, then in addition to taking advantage of the log-law region, we can exploit the fact that the flow becomes self-similar in the far wake. This latter behavior makes it possible to cast the governing equations as a set of total differential equations. Solutions of this set and comparison with measured shear stress and velocity profiles yields the desired set of model constants. Such a set is, in general, different from other sets of model constants. The rational for such an approach is that if we can correctly model the flow over a flat plate and its far wake, then we can have a better chance of predicting the behavior in between. It is to be noted that the approach does not appeal, in any way, to the decay of homogeneous turbulence. This is because the asymptotic behavior of the flow under consideration is not representative of the decay of homogeneous turbulence.

  19. User-Driven Sampling Strategies in Image Exploitation

    SciTech Connect

    Harvey, Neal R.; Porter, Reid B.

    2013-12-23

    Visual analytics and interactive machine learning both try to leverage the complementary strengths of humans and machines to solve complex data exploitation tasks. These fields overlap most significantly when training is involved: the visualization or machine learning tool improves over time by exploiting observations of the human-computer interaction. This paper focuses on one aspect of the human-computer interaction that we call user-driven sampling strategies. Unlike relevance feedback and active learning sampling strategies, where the computer selects which data to label at each iteration, we investigate situations where the user selects which data is to be labeled at each iteration. User-driven sampling strategies can emerge in many visual analytics applications but they have not been fully developed in machine learning. We discovered that in user-driven sampling strategies suggest new theoretical and practical research questions for both visualization science and machine learning. In this paper we identify and quantify the potential benefits of these strategies in a practical image analysis application. We find user-driven sampling strategies can sometimes provide significant performance gains by steering tools towards local minima that have lower error than tools trained with all of the data. Furthermore, in preliminary experiments we find these performance gains are particularly pronounced when the user is experienced with the tool and application domain.

  20. JPEG2000-coded image error concealment exploiting convex sets projections.

    PubMed

    Atzori, Luigi; Ginesu, Giaime; Raccis, Alessio

    2005-04-01

    Transmission errors in JPEG2000 can be grouped into three main classes, depending on the affected area: LL, high frequencies at the lower decomposition levels, and high frequencies at the higher decomposition levels. The first type of errors are the most annoying but can be concealed exploiting the signal spatial correlation like in a number of techniques proposed in the past; the second are less annoying but more difficult to address; the latter are often imperceptible. In this paper, we address the problem of concealing the second class or errors when high bit-planes are damaged by proposing a new approach based on the theory of projections onto convex sets. Accordingly, the error effects are masked by iteratively applying two procedures: low-pass (LP) filtering in the spatial domain and restoration of the uncorrupted wavelet coefficients in the transform domain. It has been observed that a uniform LP filtering brought to some undesired side effects that negatively compensated the advantages. This problem has been overcome by applying an adaptive solution, which exploits an edge map to choose the optimal filter mask size. Simulation results demonstrated the efficiency of the proposed approach. PMID:15825483

  1. User-Driven Sampling Strategies in Image Exploitation

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Harvey, Neal R.; Porter, Reid B.

    2013-12-23

    Visual analytics and interactive machine learning both try to leverage the complementary strengths of humans and machines to solve complex data exploitation tasks. These fields overlap most significantly when training is involved: the visualization or machine learning tool improves over time by exploiting observations of the human-computer interaction. This paper focuses on one aspect of the human-computer interaction that we call user-driven sampling strategies. Unlike relevance feedback and active learning sampling strategies, where the computer selects which data to label at each iteration, we investigate situations where the user selects which data is to be labeled at each iteration. User-drivenmore » sampling strategies can emerge in many visual analytics applications but they have not been fully developed in machine learning. We discovered that in user-driven sampling strategies suggest new theoretical and practical research questions for both visualization science and machine learning. In this paper we identify and quantify the potential benefits of these strategies in a practical image analysis application. We find user-driven sampling strategies can sometimes provide significant performance gains by steering tools towards local minima that have lower error than tools trained with all of the data. Furthermore, in preliminary experiments we find these performance gains are particularly pronounced when the user is experienced with the tool and application domain.« less

  2. A case study of exploiting enterprise resource planning requirements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niu, Nan; Jin, Mingzhou; Cheng, Jing-Ru C.

    2011-05-01

    The requirements engineering (RE) processes have become a key to conceptualising corporate-wide integrated solutions based on packaged enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. The RE literature has mainly focused on procuring the most suitable ERP package. Little is known about how an organisation exploits the chosen ERP RE model to frame the business application development. This article reports an exploratory case study of a key tenet of ERP RE adoption, namely that aligning business applications to the packaged RE model leads to integral practices and economic development. The case study analysed a series interrelated pilot projects developed for a business division of a large IT manufacturing and service company, using Oracle's appl1ication implementation method (AIM). The study indicated that AIM RE improved team collaboration and project management experience, but needed to make hidden assumptions explicit to support data visibility and integrity. Our study can direct researchers towards rigorous empirical evaluations of ERP RE adoption, collect experiences and lessons learned for practitioners, and help generate more effective and mature processes when exploiting ERP RE methods.

  3. REG and GREAT, two networks to optimize Gaia scientific exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Figueras, F.; Jordi, C.; Spanish Participants in Reg; Great

    2013-05-01

    The launch of Gaia satellite by the European Space Agency is a year ahead (last quarter of 2013), and Spanish and European community have already out in place two networks devoted to the preparation of the scientific exploitation of the data acquired by the satellite: GREAT (Gaia Research for European Astronomy Training), funded by the European Science Foundation and by Marie Curie Actions in its People 7th Programme, and REG (Spanish Network for the scientific exploitation of Gaia) funded by MINECO. These networks, which are open to the international community, have adopted the challenges of Gaia mission: to revolutionize our understanding of the Milky Way and its components, trace the distribution of dark matter in the local universe, validate and improve models of stellar structure and evolution, characterizing solar system objects, ... and many more. Both networks promote the close interaction among researchers of different institutes, by supporting short and long exchange visits, workshops, schools and large conferences. Currently, 128 Spanish people actively participate in the several working groups in GREAT and REG and 2 students are performing their PhD in the framework of the GREAT-ITN Spanish node. This paper provides detailed information about the structure of these networks, the Spanish participation, and present and future tasks that are foreseen.

  4. Infomax Strategies for an Optimal Balance Between Exploration and Exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy, Gautam; Celani, Antonio; Vergassola, Massimo

    2016-04-01

    Proper balance between exploitation and exploration is what makes good decisions that achieve high reward, like payoff or evolutionary fitness. The Infomax principle postulates that maximization of information directs the function of diverse systems, from living systems to artificial neural networks. While specific applications turn out to be successful, the validity of information as a proxy for reward remains unclear. Here, we consider the multi-armed bandit decision problem, which features arms (slot-machines) of unknown probabilities of success and a player trying to maximize cumulative payoff by choosing the sequence of arms to play. We show that an Infomax strategy (Info-p) which optimally gathers information on the highest probability of success among the arms, saturates known optimal bounds and compares favorably to existing policies. Conversely, gathering information on the identity of the best arm in the bandit leads to a strategy that is vastly suboptimal in terms of payoff. The nature of the quantity selected for Infomax acquisition is then crucial for effective tradeoffs between exploration and exploitation.

  5. Salmonella Typhimurium exploits inflammation to its own advantage in piglets

    PubMed Central

    Chirullo, Barbara; Pesciaroli, Michele; Drumo, Rosanna; Ruggeri, Jessica; Razzuoli, Elisabetta; Pistoia, Claudia; Petrucci, Paola; Martinelli, Nicola; Cucco, Lucilla; Moscati, Livia; Amadori, Massimo; Magistrali, Chiara F.; Alborali, Giovanni L.; Pasquali, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Salmonella Typhimurium (S. Typhimurium) is responsible for foodborne zoonotic infections that, in humans, induce self-limiting gastroenteritis. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the wild-type strain S. Typhimurium (STM14028) is able to exploit inflammation fostering an active infection. Due to the similarity between human and porcine diseases induced by S. Typhimurium, we used piglets as a model for salmonellosis and gastrointestinal research. This study showed that STM14028 is able to efficiently colonize in vitro porcine mono-macrophages and intestinal columnar epithelial (IPEC-J2) cells, and that the colonization significantly increases with LPS pre-treatment. This increase was then reversed by inhibiting the LPS stimulation through LPS antagonist, confirming an active role of LPS stimulation in STM14028-intracellular colonization. Moreover, LPS in vivo treatment increased cytokines blood level and body temperature at 4 h post infection, which is consistent with an acute inflammatory stimulus, capable to influence the colonization of STM14028 in different organs and tissues. The present study proves for the first time that in acute enteric salmonellosis, S. Typhimurium exploits inflammation for its benefit in piglets. PMID:26441914

  6. Activity-based exploitation of Full Motion Video (FMV)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kant, Shashi

    2012-06-01

    Video has been a game-changer in how US forces are able to find, track and defeat its adversaries. With millions of minutes of video being generated from an increasing number of sensor platforms, the DOD has stated that the rapid increase in video is overwhelming their analysts. The manpower required to view and garner useable information from the flood of video is unaffordable, especially in light of current fiscal restraints. "Search" within full-motion video has traditionally relied on human tagging of content, and video metadata, to provision filtering and locate segments of interest, in the context of analyst query. Our approach utilizes a novel machine-vision based approach to index FMV, using object recognition & tracking, events and activities detection. This approach enables FMV exploitation in real-time, as well as a forensic look-back within archives. This approach can help get the most information out of video sensor collection, help focus the attention of overburdened analysts form connections in activity over time and conserve national fiscal resources in exploiting FMV.

  7. Herbivore exploits orally secreted bacteria to suppress plant defenses.

    PubMed

    Chung, Seung Ho; Rosa, Cristina; Scully, Erin D; Peiffer, Michelle; Tooker, John F; Hoover, Kelli; Luthe, Dawn S; Felton, Gary W

    2013-09-24

    Induced plant defenses in response to herbivore attack are modulated by cross-talk between jasmonic acid (JA)- and salicylic acid (SA)-signaling pathways. Oral secretions from some insect herbivores contain effectors that overcome these antiherbivore defenses. Herbivores possess diverse microbes in their digestive systems and these microbial symbionts can modify plant-insect interactions; however, the specific role of herbivore-associated microbes in manipulating plant defenses remains unclear. Here, we demonstrate that Colorado potato beetle (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) larvae exploit bacteria in their oral secretions to suppress antiherbivore defenses in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum). We found that antibiotic-untreated larvae decreased production of JA and JA-responsive antiherbivore defenses, but increased SA accumulation and SA-responsive gene expression. Beetles benefit from down-regulating plant defenses by exhibiting enhanced larval growth. In SA-deficient plants, suppression was not observed, indicating that suppression of JA-regulated defenses depends on the SA-signaling pathway. Applying bacteria isolated from larval oral secretions to wounded plants confirmed that three microbial symbionts belonging to the genera Stenotrophomonas, Pseudomonas, and Enterobacter are responsible for defense suppression. Additionally, reinoculation of these bacteria to antibiotic-treated larvae restored their ability to suppress defenses. Flagellin isolated from Pseudomonas sp. was associated with defense suppression. Our findings show that the herbivore exploits symbiotic bacteria as a decoy to deceive plants into incorrectly perceiving the threat as microbial. By interfering with the normal perception of herbivory, beetles can evade antiherbivore defenses of its host. PMID:24019469

  8. Cheating by exploitation of developmental prestalk patterning in Dictyostelium discoideum.

    PubMed

    Khare, Anupama; Shaulsky, Gad

    2010-02-01

    The cooperative developmental system of the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum is susceptible to exploitation by cheaters-strains that make more than their fair share of spores in chimerae. Laboratory screens in Dictyostelium have shown that the genetic potential for facultative cheating is high, and field surveys have shown that cheaters are abundant in nature, but the cheating mechanisms are largely unknown. Here we describe cheater C (chtC), a strong facultative cheater mutant that cheats by affecting prestalk differentiation. The chtC gene is developmentally regulated and its mRNA becomes stalk-enriched at the end of development. chtC mutants are defective in maintaining the prestalk cell fate as some of their prestalk cells transdifferentiate into prespore cells, but that defect does not affect gross developmental morphology or sporulation efficiency. In chimerae between wild-type and chtC mutant cells, the wild-type cells preferentially give rise to prestalk cells, and the chtC mutants increase their representation in the spore mass. Mixing chtC mutants with other cell-type proportioning mutants revealed that the cheating is directly related to the prestalk-differentiation propensity of the victim. These findings illustrate that a cheater can victimize cooperative strains by exploiting an established developmental pathway. PMID:20195510

  9. Exploiting GPUs in Virtual Machine for BioCloud

    PubMed Central

    Jo, Heeseung; Jeong, Jinkyu; Lee, Myoungho; Choi, Dong Hoon

    2013-01-01

    Recently, biological applications start to be reimplemented into the applications which exploit many cores of GPUs for better computation performance. Therefore, by providing virtualized GPUs to VMs in cloud computing environment, many biological applications will willingly move into cloud environment to enhance their computation performance and utilize infinite cloud computing resource while reducing expenses for computations. In this paper, we propose a BioCloud system architecture that enables VMs to use GPUs in cloud environment. Because much of the previous research has focused on the sharing mechanism of GPUs among VMs, they cannot achieve enough performance for biological applications of which computation throughput is more crucial rather than sharing. The proposed system exploits the pass-through mode of PCI express (PCI-E) channel. By making each VM be able to access underlying GPUs directly, applications can show almost the same performance as when those are in native environment. In addition, our scheme multiplexes GPUs by using hot plug-in/out device features of PCI-E channel. By adding or removing GPUs in each VM in on-demand manner, VMs in the same physical host can time-share their GPUs. We implemented the proposed system using the Xen VMM and NVIDIA GPUs and showed that our prototype is highly effective for biological GPU applications in cloud environment. PMID:23710465

  10. Exploiting Domain Knowledge by Automated Taxonomy Generation in Recommender Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Tao; Anand, Sarabjot S.

    The effectiveness of incorporating domain knowledge into recommender systems to address their sparseness problem and improve their prediction accuracy has been discussed in many research works. However, this technique is usually restrained in practice because of its high computational expense. Although cluster analysis can alleviate the computational complexity of the recommendation procedure, it is not satisfactory in preserving pair-wise item similarities, which would severely impair the recommendation quality. In this paper, we propose an efficient approach based on the technique of Automated Taxonomy Generation to exploit relational domain knowledge in recommender systems so as to achieve high system scalability and prediction accuracy. Based on the domain knowledge, a hierarchical data model is synthesized in an offline phase to preserve the original pairwise item similarities. The model is then used by online recommender systems to facilitate the similarity calculation and keep their recommendation quality comparable to those systems by means of real-time exploiting domain knowledge. Experiments were conducted upon real datasets to evaluate our approach.

  11. Survey for zoonotic rickettsial pathogens in northern flying squirrels, Glaucomys sabrinus, in California.

    PubMed

    Foley, Janet E; Nieto, Nathan C; Clueit, S Bernadette; Foley, Patrick; Nicholson, William N; Brown, Richard N

    2007-10-01

    Epidemic typhus, caused by Rickettsia prowazekii, is maintained in a southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans) sylvatic cycle in the southeastern United States. The northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus) has not been previously associated with R. prowazekii transmission. A second rickettsial pathogen, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, infects dusky-footed woodrats (Neotoma fuscipes) and tree squirrels in northern California. Because northern flying squirrels or their ectoparasites have not been tested for these rickettsial pathogens, serology and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) were used to test 24 northern flying squirrels for R. prowazekii and A. phagocytophilum infection or antibodies. Although there was no evidence of exposure to R. prowazekii, we provide molecular evidence of A. phagocytophilum infection in one flying squirrel; two flying squirrels also were seropositive for this pathogen. Fleas and ticks removed from the squirrels included Ceratophyllus ciliatus mononis, Opisodasys vesperalis, Ixodes hearlei, Ixodes pacificus, and Dermacentor paramapertus. PMID:17984264

  12. Exploitation: One View of Industry and Business. Training and Development Research Center: Project Number Ten.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swanson, Richard A.; And Others

    A reasonable definition of exploitation is an unjust or improper use of another person for one's own profit or advantage. Exploitation predates the age of industry; it is not the sole province of industry and business. Worker responses to exploitation in the evolving industrial democracy have taken the form of labor unions, political clubs, credit…

  13. The Illusions and Juxtapositions of Commercial Sexual Exploitation among Youth: Identifying Effective Street-Outreach Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Holger-Ambrose, Beth; Langmade, Cheree; Edinburgh, Laurel D.; Saewyc, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    To explore sexually exploited youths' perspectives of how street outreach workers can effectively provide outreach and connections to services, we conducted qualitative interviews with 13 female participants, ages 14 to 22, in a Midwest U.S. city. Participants reported multiple types of exploitation, most first exploited by age 13, plus…

  14. 75 FR 40838 - Establishment of the Advisory Board on Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-07-14

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Establishment of the Advisory Board on Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation AGENCY... Board on Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation is authorized under section 2021, Subtitle H--Elder... establishment of the Advisory Board on Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation, as directed by section...

  15. Prevalence of selected rickettsial infections in cats in Southern Germany.

    PubMed

    Bergmann, Michèle; Englert, Theresa; Stuetzer, Bianca; Hawley, Jennifer R; Lappin, Michael R; Hartmann, Katrin

    2015-10-01

    Prevalence of Anaplasma, Ehrlichia, Neorickettsia, and Wolbachia DNA in blood of 479 cats collected in different veterinary clinics in Southern Germany was determined using a previously published conventional PCR using 16S-23S intergenic spacer primers (5' CTG GGG ACT ACG GTC GCA AGA C 3' - forward; 5' CTC CAG TTT ATC ACT GGA AGT T 3' - reverse). Purified amplicons were sequenced to confirm genus and species. Associations between rickettsial infections, and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), as well as feline leukemia virus (FeLV) status were evaluated. Rickettsial prevalence was 0.4% (2/479; CI: 0.01-1.62%). In the two infected cats, Anaplasma phagocytophilum DNA was amplified. These cats came from different environment and had outdoor access. Both were ill with many of their problems likely related to other diseases. However, one cat had neutrophilia with left shift and the other thrombocytopenia potentially caused by their A. phagocytophilum infection. There was no significant difference in the FIV and FeLV status between A. phagocytophilum-negative and -positive cats. A. phagocytophilum can cause infection in cats in Southern Germany, and appropriate tick control is recommended. PMID:26387062

  16. Assessing the risk of human granulocytic anaplasmosis and lyme borreliosis after a tick bite in Bavaria, Germany.

    PubMed

    von Wissmann, Beatrix; Hautmann, Wolfgang; Sing, Andreas; Hizo-Teufel, Cecilia; Fingerle, Volker

    2015-10-01

    To date, only isolated incidences of human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA) have been reported in Europe. However, entomological studies in Bavaria, Germany showed a prevalence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum of between 2 and 9.5% in the tick vector Ixodes ricinus. In this study we assessed the risk of pathogenic A. phagocytophilum infection after a tick bite in Bavaria. The seroprevalence of anti-Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (s.l.) antibodies was investigated as an indicator of past exposure, seroconversion as actual exposure of participants to ticks. Patients with a tick bite in the preceding four weeks were recruited by participating doctors. Questionnaires on demographics, tick exposure and clinical signs were completed by patients and doctors, respectively. Two blood samples, taken at an interval of two weeks, were tested for antibodies against A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi s.l. One of 107 recruited patients showed serological evidence of an acute infection of A. phagocytophilum but had no clinical signs. Four out of six patients with serological evidence of an acute B. burgdorferi s.l. infection, presented with erythema migrans. A seroprevalence of 7.5% for A. phagocytophilum and 13.1% for B. burgdorferi s.l. was detected. The comparatively high seroprevalence of B. burdorferi s.l. and A. phagocytophilum antibodies indicate frequent past exposure of participants to ticks. The finding of one acute infection of A. phagocytophilum in the absence of clinical signs, supports entomological evidence that the strains of A. phagocytophilum predominantly present in the Bavarian tick population may cause transient infections but are of low pathogenicity in humans. PMID:26338146

  17. Exploitation of resonance Raman spectroscopy as a remote chemical sensor

    SciTech Connect

    Sedlacek, A.J.; Chen, C.L.

    1995-08-01

    We have discussed recent experimental results using a resonance-Raman-based LIDAR system as a remote chemical sensor. This spectroscopy has the fundamental advantage that it is based on optical fingerprints that are insensitive to environmental perturbations. By taking advantage of resonance enhancement, which 6 orders-of-magnitude, can be as large as 4 to an increased sensing range for a given chemical concentration or lower detection limit for a given stand-off distance can be realized. The success discussed above can in part be traced back to the use of new state-of-the-art technologies which, only recently, have allowed the phenomenon of resonance-enhanced Raman spectroscopy to be fully exploited as a remote chemical sensor platform. Since many chemicals have electronic transitions in the UV/IS, it is expected that many will have pronounced resonance enhancements.

  18. Exploiting the colloidal nanocrystal library to construct electronic devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Ji-Hyuk; Wang, Han; Oh, Soong Ju; Paik, Taejong; Sung, Pil; Sung, Jinwoo; Ye, Xingchen; Zhao, Tianshuo; Diroll, Benjamin T.; Murray, Christopher B.; Kagan, Cherie R.

    2016-04-01

    Synthetic methods produce libraries of colloidal nanocrystals with tunable physical properties by tailoring the nanocrystal size, shape, and composition. Here, we exploit colloidal nanocrystal diversity and design the materials, interfaces, and processes to construct all-nanocrystal electronic devices using solution-based processes. Metallic silver and semiconducting cadmium selenide nanocrystals are deposited to form high-conductivity and high-mobility thin-film electrodes and channel layers of field-effect transistors. Insulating aluminum oxide nanocrystals are assembled layer by layer with polyelectrolytes to form high–dielectric constant gate insulator layers for low-voltage device operation. Metallic indium nanocrystals are codispersed with silver nanocrystals to integrate an indium supply in the deposited electrodes that serves to passivate and dope the cadmium selenide nanocrystal channel layer. We fabricate all-nanocrystal field-effect transistors on flexible plastics with electron mobilities of 21.7 square centimeters per volt-second.

  19. Exploitation, conservation, preservation: A geographic perspective on natural resource use

    SciTech Connect

    Cutter, S.L.; Renwick, H.L.; Renwick, W.H.

    1985-01-01

    The authors of this college textbook deliberately chose the title words ''exploitation,'' ''conservation,'' and ''preservation'' to clearly illustrate that people may have very different views of natural resources. The authors state that they have attempted to include a wide range of opinions and interpretations of natural resource issues, and they have achieved this goal remarkable well. Part one (five chapters) examines the economic, ecological, political, and other factors involved in making decisions about resource use. Part two (ten chapters) consists of relatively traditional coverage of the various resources. Part three has a chapter on various models of the future that were prepared by various individuals and organizations. Then there is an epilogue in which each author views the future.

  20. Microfluidic photocatalytic device exploiting PDMS/TiO2 nanocomposite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lamberti, Andrea

    2015-04-01

    A microfluidic device exploiting PDMS/TiO2 nanocomposite has been used for photocatalytic degradation studies of organic dye. By using commercial P25 TiO2 nanoparticles (NPs) and conventional PDMS casting and replication techniques, high density and well-dispersed TiO2 NPs were embedded in the elastomeric surface. The obtained nanocomposite membranes were characterized by morphological, chemical, and physical points of view. The fabrication process allows an easy integration of the membrane into an all-PDMS microfluidic device for pollutant photodegradation. The high surface-to-volume ratio intrinsic in nanoparticles and the functional properties of the proposed nanocomposite substrate are responsible for the interesting photocatalytic device performance.

  1. Sustained Administration of Hormones Exploiting Nanoconfined Diffusion through Nanochannel Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Geninatti, Thomas; Hood, R. Lyle; Bruno, Giacomo; Jain, Priya; Nicolov, Eugenia; Ziemys, Arturas; Grattoni, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Implantable devices may provide a superior means for hormone delivery through maintaining serum levels within target therapeutic windows. Zero-order administration has been shown to reach an equilibrium with metabolic clearance, resulting in a constant serum concentration and bioavailability of released hormones. By exploiting surface-to-molecule interaction within nanochannel membranes, it is possible to achieve a long-term, constant diffusive release of agents from implantable reservoirs. In this study, we sought to demonstrate the controlled release of model hormones from a novel nanochannel system. We investigated the delivery of hormones through our nanochannel membrane over a period of 40 days. Levothyroxine, osteocalcin and testosterone were selected as representative hormones based on their different molecular properties and structures. The release mechanisms and transport behaviors of these hormones within 3, 5 and 40 nm channels were characterized. Results further supported the suitability of the nanochannels for sustained administration from implantable platforms. PMID:27293533

  2. Exploiting Intimate Relationships: Controlling Mosquito-Transmitted Disease with Wolbachia.

    PubMed

    Caragata, Eric P; Dutra, Heverton L C; Moreira, Luciano A

    2016-03-01

    Mosquito-transmitted diseases impose a growing burden on human health, and current control strategies have proven insufficient to stem the tide. The bacterium Wolbachia is a novel and promising form of control for mosquito-transmitted disease. It manipulates host biology, restricts infection with dengue and other pathogens, and alters host reproduction to promote rapid spread in the field. In this review, we examine how the intimate and diverse relationships formed between Wolbachia and their mosquito hosts can be exploited for disease control purposes. We consider these relationships in the context of recent developments, including successful field trials with Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes to combat dengue, and new Wolbachia infections in key malaria vectors, which have enhanced the disease control prospects of this unique bacterium. PMID:26776329

  3. Exploiting the geomagnetic distortion of inclined atmospheric showers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Billoir, Pierre; Settimo, Mariangela; Blanco, Miguel

    2016-02-01

    We propose a novel approach to the determination of the nature of ultra-high energy cosmic rays by exploiting the geomagnetic deviation of muons in nearly horizontal showers. The distribution of muons at ground level is well described by a simple parameterization providing a few shape parameters tightly correlated to Xmaxμ, the depth of maximal muon production, which is a mass indicator tightly correlated to the usual parameter Xmax, the depth of maximal development of the shower. We show that some constraints can be set on the predictions of hadronic models, especially by combining the geomagnetic distortion with standard measurements of the longitudinal profile. We discuss the precision needed to obtain significant results, and we propose a schematic layout of a detector.

  4. Review of oil and gas exploitation impacts on grizzly bears

    SciTech Connect

    Schallenberger, A.

    1980-01-01

    It is concluded that available information indicates that impacts of oil and gas exploitation should be considered primarily detrimental for grizzly bears in northwestern Montana. Research has shown that grizzlies tend to react strongly to aircraft, especially helicopters. Marked animals previously captured by aircraft show the greatest reaction. Helicopter disturbance may cause den abandonment. Biologists suggest that road development has contributed to a decline in numbers of bears by accelerating habitat loss and increasing hunting and poaching pressure. Use of river valleys for transportation corridors, campsites, and other activities magnifies the effect of human presence by concentrating it in some of the most vulnerable and essential grizzly habitat. Bear-human conflicts may increase as a result of secondary development such as recreation, logging, livestock grazing, and construction of subdivisions.

  5. Microbial biosurfactants: challenges and opportunities for future exploitation.

    PubMed

    Marchant, Roger; Banat, Ibrahim M

    2012-11-01

    The drive for industrial sustainability has pushed biosurfactants to the top of the agenda of many companies. Biosurfactants offer the possibility of replacing chemical surfactants, produced from nonrenewable resources, with alternatives produced from cheap renewable feedstocks. Biosurfactants are also attractive because they are less damaging to the environment yet are robust enough for industrial use. The most promising biosurfactants at the present time are the glycolipids, sophorolipids produced by Candida yeasts, mannosylerythritol lipids (MELs) produced by Pseudozyma yeasts, and rhamnolipids produced by Pseudomonas. Despite the current enthusiasm for these compounds several residual problems remain. This review highlights remaining problems and indicates the prospects for imminent commercial exploitation of a new generation of microbial biosurfactants. PMID:22901730

  6. Exploiting material softening in hard PZTs for resonant bandwidth enhancement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leadenham, S.; Moura, A.; Erturk, A.

    2016-04-01

    Intentionally designed nonlinearities have been employed by several research groups to enhance the frequency bandwidth of vibration energy harvesters. Another type of nonlinear resonance behavior emerges from the piezoelectric constitutive behavior for high excitation levels and is manifested in the form of softening stiffness. This material nonlinearity does not result in the jump phenomenon in soft piezoelectric ceramics, e.g. PZT-5A and PZT-5H, due to their large internal dissipation. This paper explores the potential for wideband energy harvesting using a hard (relatively high quality factor) PZT-8 bimorph by exploiting its material softening. A wide range of base excitation experiments conducted for a set of resistive electrical loads confirms the frequency bandwidth enhancement.

  7. Exploiting Biocatalysis in the Synthesis of Supramolecular Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roy, Sangita; Ulijn, Rein V.

    This chapter details the exploitation of biocatalysis in generating supramolecular polymers. This approach provides highly dynamic supramolecular structures, inspired by biological polymeric systems found in the intra- and extracellular space. The molecular design of the self-assembling precursors is discussed in terms of enzyme recognition, molecular switching mechanisms and non-covalent interactions that drive the supramolecular polymerisation process, with an emphasis on aromatic peptide amphiphiles. We discuss a number of unique features of these systems, including spatiotemporal control of nucleation and growth of supramolecular polymers and the possibility of kinetically controlling mechanical properties. Fully reversible systems that operate under thermodynamic control allow for defect correction and selection of the most stable structures from mixtures of monomers. Finally, a number of potential applications of enzymatic supramolecular polymerisations are discussed in the context of biomedicine and nanotechnology.

  8. Compressive SAR imaging with joint sparsity and local similarity exploitation.

    PubMed

    Shen, Fangfang; Zhao, Guanghui; Shi, Guangming; Dong, Weisheng; Wang, Chenglong; Niu, Yi

    2015-01-01

    Compressive sensing-based synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imaging has shown its superior capability in high-resolution image formation. However, most of those works focus on the scenes that can be sparsely represented in fixed spaces. When dealing with complicated scenes, these fixed spaces lack adaptivity in characterizing varied image contents. To solve this problem, a new compressive sensing-based radar imaging approach with adaptive sparse representation is proposed. Specifically, an autoregressive model is introduced to adaptively exploit the structural sparsity of an image. In addition, similarity among pixels is integrated into the autoregressive model to further promote the capability and thus an adaptive sparse representation facilitated by a weighted autoregressive model is derived. Since the weighted autoregressive model is inherently determined by the unknown image, we propose a joint optimization scheme by iterative SAR imaging and updating of the weighted autoregressive model to solve this problem. Eventually, experimental results demonstrated the validity and generality of the proposed approach. PMID:25686307

  9. Thermal infrared exploitation for 3D face reconstruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abayowa, Bernard O.

    2009-05-01

    Despite the advances in face recognition research, current face recognition systems are still not accurate or robust enough to be deployed in uncontrolled environments. The existence of a pose and illumination invariant face recognition system is still lacking. This research exploits the relationship between thermal infrared and visible imagery, to estimate 3D face with visible texture from infrared imagery. The relationship between visible and thermal infrared texture is learned using kernel canonical correlation analysis(KCCA), and then a 3D modeler is used to estimate the geometric structure from predicted visual imagery. This research will find it's application in uncontrolled environments where illumination and pose invariant identification or tracking is required at long range such as urban search and rescue (Amber alert, missing dementia patient), and manhunt scenarios.

  10. Smart facility application: exploiting space technology for smart city solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Termizi, A. A. A.; Ahmad, N.; Omar, M. F.; Wahap, N. A.; Zainal, D.; Ismail, N. M.

    2016-06-01

    Facilities and amenities management is amongst the core functionalities of local government. Considering the vast area that local government has to manage, a smart solution is extremely inevitable to solve issues such as inefficient maintenance of public parks, drainage system and so forth. Therefore, this paper aims to offer a smart city solution which exploits the benefit of space technology. This proposed solution is one of the modules developed in Spatial Smart City Service Delivery Engine (SSC SDE) Project undertaken by Agensi Angkasa Negara (ANGKASA). Various levels of local government have been chosen to understand real issues faced by them. Based on this data, a Smart Facility application has been developed with the aim to enhance the service delivery by the local government hence improving citizens’ satisfaction. Since this project is still in progress, this paper will merely discussing the concept of this application.

  11. SMARTS: Exploiting Temporal Locality and Parallelism through Vertical Execution

    SciTech Connect

    Beckman, P.; Crotinger, J.; Karmesin, S.; Malony, A.; Oldehoeft, R.; Shende, S.; Smith, S.; Vajracharya, S.

    1999-01-04

    In the solution of large-scale numerical prob- lems, parallel computing is becoming simultaneously more important and more difficult. The complex organization of today's multiprocessors with several memory hierarchies has forced the scientific programmer to make a choice between simple but unscalable code and scalable but extremely com- plex code that does not port to other architectures. This paper describes how the SMARTS runtime system and the POOMA C++ class library for high-performance scientific computing work together to exploit data parallelism in scientific applications while hiding the details of manag- ing parallelism and data locality from the user. We present innovative algorithms, based on the macro -dataflow model, for detecting data parallelism and efficiently executing data- parallel statements on shared-memory multiprocessors. We also desclibe how these algorithms can be implemented on clusters of SMPS.

  12. Apoptosis pathways and their therapeutic exploitation in pancreatic cancer.

    PubMed

    Fulda, Simone

    2009-07-01

    Resistance to apoptosis (programmed cell death) is a characteristic feature of human malignancies including pancreatic cancer, which is one of the leading causes of cancer deaths in the western world. Defects in this intrinsic cell death program can contribute to the multistep process of tumorigenesis, because too little cell death can disturb tissue homeostasis. Further, blockade of apoptosis pathways can cause treatment failure, because intact apoptosis signalling cascades largely mediate therapy-induced cytotoxicity. The elucidation of apoptosis pathways in pancreatic carcinoma over the last decade has resulted in the identification of various molecular defects. How apoptosis pathways can be exploited for the treatment of pancreatic cancer will be discussed in this review. PMID:19382915

  13. Protocol to Exploit Waiting Resources for UASNs †

    PubMed Central

    Hung, Li-Ling; Luo, Yung-Jeng

    2016-01-01

    The transmission speed of acoustic waves in water is much slower than that of radio waves in terrestrial wireless sensor networks. Thus, the propagation delay in underwater acoustic sensor networks (UASN) is much greater. Longer propagation delay leads to complicated communication and collision problems. To solve collision problems, some studies have proposed waiting mechanisms; however, long waiting mechanisms result in low bandwidth utilization. To improve throughput, this study proposes a slotted medium access control protocol to enhance bandwidth utilization in UASNs. The proposed mechanism increases communication by exploiting temporal and spatial resources that are typically idle in order to protect communication against interference. By reducing wait time, network performance and energy consumption can be improved. A performance evaluation demonstrates that when the data packets are large or sensor deployment is dense, the energy consumption of proposed protocol is less than that of existing protocols as well as the throughput is higher than that of existing protocols. PMID:27005624

  14. Exploiting the colloidal nanocrystal library to construct electronic devices.

    PubMed

    Choi, Ji-Hyuk; Wang, Han; Oh, Soong Ju; Paik, Taejong; Sung, Pil; Sung, Jinwoo; Ye, Xingchen; Zhao, Tianshuo; Diroll, Benjamin T; Murray, Christopher B; Kagan, Cherie R

    2016-04-01

    Synthetic methods produce libraries of colloidal nanocrystals with tunable physical properties by tailoring the nanocrystal size, shape, and composition. Here, we exploit colloidal nanocrystal diversity and design the materials, interfaces, and processes to construct all-nanocrystal electronic devices using solution-based processes. Metallic silver and semiconducting cadmium selenide nanocrystals are deposited to form high-conductivity and high-mobility thin-film electrodes and channel layers of field-effect transistors. Insulating aluminum oxide nanocrystals are assembled layer by layer with polyelectrolytes to form high-dielectric constant gate insulator layers for low-voltage device operation. Metallic indium nanocrystals are codispersed with silver nanocrystals to integrate an indium supply in the deposited electrodes that serves to passivate and dope the cadmium selenide nanocrystal channel layer. We fabricate all-nanocrystal field-effect transistors on flexible plastics with electron mobilities of 21.7 square centimeters per volt-second. PMID:27124455

  15. Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and State Child Welfare Systems.

    PubMed

    Bounds, Dawn; Julion, Wrenetha A; Delaney, Kathleen R

    2015-01-01

    In several states, commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) is now a reportable child abuse offense. Illinois has taken the lead in tackling the issue and the Illinois experience illuminates valuable lessons. This article delineates the protection, practice, and policy implications that evolve when CSEC falls under a state child welfare system. The specific aims are to (a) discuss CSEC, its victims, risks, harms, and challenges inherent in providing effective care; (b) use Illinois as an exemplar to explicate the consequences and implementation challenges of establishing a state reporting system that frames CSEC as a child welfare issue; (c) recommend strategies for developing effective state reporting models, and (d) demonstrate how nurses are well poised to advocate for victims of human trafficking on both state and national levels. Recommendations for improving the identification of CSEC victims and overcoming challenges to state implementation are offered. PMID:25908664

  16. Rehabilitation of a case of pure alexia: exploiting residual abilities.

    PubMed

    Maher, L M; Clayton, M C; Barrett, A M; Schober-Peterson, D; Gonzalez Rothi, L J

    1998-11-01

    We present a case study of a 43-year-old woman with chronic and stable pure alexia. Using a multiple baseline design we report the results of two different interventions to improve reading. First, a restitutive treatment approach using an implicit semantic access strategy was attempted. This approach was designed to exploit privileged access to lexical-semantic representations and met with little success. Treatment was then switched to a substitutive treatment strategy, which involved using the patient's finger to pretend to copy the letters in words and sentences. Reading using this motor cross-cuing strategy was 100% accurate and doubled in speed after 4 weeks of intervention. We propose that this patient's inability to benefit from the implicit semantic access treatment approach may be in part related to her inability to suppress the segmental letter identification process of word recognition. PMID:10050368

  17. Apoptosis pathways and their therapeutic exploitation in pancreatic cancer

    PubMed Central

    Fulda, Simone

    2009-01-01

    Resistance to apoptosis (programmed cell death) is a characteristic feature of human malignancies including pancreatic cancer, which is one of the leading causes of cancer deaths in the western world. Defects in this intrinsic cell death program can contribute to the multistep process of tumorigenesis, because too little cell death can disturb tissue homeostasis. Further, blockade of apoptosis pathways can cause treatment failure, because intact apoptosis signalling cascades largely mediate therapy-induced cytotoxicity. The elucidation of apoptosis pathways in pancreatic carcinoma over the last decade has resulted in the identification of various molecular defects. How apoptosis pathways can be exploited for the treatment of pancreatic cancer will be discussed in this review. PMID:19382915

  18. Individual ambidexterity: exploring and exploiting in dynamic contexts.

    PubMed

    Good, Darren; Michel, Eric J

    2013-01-01

    Previous research regarding the role of individuals within the organizational ambidexterity construct has primarily focused on behavioral characteristics of managers. Drawing from the organizational, psychological, and neuroscience literatures, this study develops and tests hypotheses concerning the formative construct of Individual Ambidexterity (IA), the cognitive abilities necessary to balance efforts of exploration and exploitation. In an initial criterion-related predictive validity laboratory study, 181 undergraduate students completed successive trials in a computer-simulated, real-time dynamic microworld context. Findings explained unique variance beyond measures of general intelligence on the total score of task adaptive performance. The results indicate a novel combination of abilities that may further understanding of how individual abilities contribute to the ambidexterity literature. PMID:24003589

  19. Image exploitation using multi-sensor/neural network systems

    SciTech Connect

    Uberbacher, E.C.; Xu, Y.; Lee, R.W.

    1995-12-31

    We have developed and evaluated a tool for change detection and other analysis tasks relevant to image exploitation. The tool, visGRAIL, integrates three key elements: (1) the use of multiple algorithms to extract information from images - feature extractors or {open_quotes}sensors{close_quotes}, (2) an algorithm to fuse the information - presently a neural network, and (3) empirical estimation of the fusion parameters based on a representative set of images. The system was applied to test images in the RADIUS Common Development Environment (RCDE). In a task designed to distinguish natural scenes from those containing various amounts of human-made objects and structure, the system classified correctly 95% of 350 images in a test set. This paper describes details of the feature extractors, and presents analyses of the discriminatory characteristics of the features. visGRAIL has been integrated into the RCDE.

  20. Exploiting sequential phonetic constraints in recognizing spoken words

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huttenlocher, D. P.

    1985-10-01

    Machine recognition of spoken language requires developing more robust recognition algorithms. A recent study by Shipman and Zue suggest using partial descriptions of speech sounds to eliminate all but a handful of word candidates from a large lexicon. The current paper extends their work by investigating the power of partial phonetic descriptions for developing recognition algorithms. First, we demonstrate that sequences of manner of articulation classes are more reliable and provide more constraint than certain other classes. Alone these results are of limited utility, due to the high degree of variability in natural speech. This variability is not uniform however, as most modifications and deletions occur in unstressed syllables. Comparing the relative constraint provided by sounds in stressed versus unstressed syllables, we discover that the stressed syllables provide substantially more constraint. This indicates that recognition algorithms can be made more robust by exploiting the manner of articulation information in stressed syllables.

  1. How Polyomaviruses Exploit the ERAD Machinery to Cause Infection.

    PubMed

    Dupzyk, Allison; Tsai, Billy

    2016-01-01

    To infect cells, polyomavirus (PyV) traffics from the cell surface to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) where it hijacks elements of the ER-associated degradation (ERAD) machinery to penetrate the ER membrane and reach the cytosol. From the cytosol, the virus transports to the nucleus, enabling transcription and replication of the viral genome that leads to lytic infection or cellular transformation. How PyV exploits the ERAD machinery to cross the ER membrane and access the cytosol, a decisive infection step, remains enigmatic. However, recent studies have slowly unraveled many aspects of this process. These emerging insights should advance our efforts to develop more effective therapies against PyV-induced human diseases. PMID:27589785

  2. Exploiting periodicity to extract the atrial activity in atrial arrhythmias

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Llinares, Raul; Igual, Jorge

    2011-12-01

    Atrial fibrillation disorders are one of the main arrhythmias of the elderly. The atrial and ventricular activities are decoupled during an atrial fibrillation episode, and very rapid and irregular waves replace the usual atrial P-wave in a normal sinus rhythm electrocardiogram (ECG). The estimation of these wavelets is a must for clinical analysis. We propose a new approach to this problem focused on the quasiperiodicity of these wavelets. Atrial activity is characterized by a main atrial rhythm in the interval 3-12 Hz. It enables us to establish the problem as the separation of the original sources from the instantaneous linear combination of them recorded in the ECG or the extraction of only the atrial component exploiting the quasiperiodic feature of the atrial signal. This methodology implies the previous estimation of such main atrial period. We present two algorithms that separate and extract the atrial rhythm starting from a prior estimation of the main atrial frequency. The first one is an algebraic method based on the maximization of a cost function that measures the periodicity. The other one is an adaptive algorithm that exploits the decorrelation of the atrial and other signals diagonalizing the correlation matrices at multiple lags of the period of atrial activity. The algorithms are applied successfully to synthetic and real data. In simulated ECGs, the average correlation index obtained was 0.811 and 0.847, respectively. In real ECGs, the accuracy of the results was validated using spectral and temporal parameters. The average peak frequency and spectral concentration obtained were 5.550 and 5.554 Hz and 56.3 and 54.4%, respectively, and the kurtosis was 0.266 and 0.695. For validation purposes, we compared the proposed algorithms with established methods, obtaining better results for simulated and real registers.

  3. Sensor Exposure, Exploitation, and Experimentation Environment (SE4)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buell, D.; Duff, F.; Goding, J.; Bankston, M.; McLaughlin, T.; Six, S.; Taylor, S.; Wootton, S.

    2011-09-01

    As the resident space object population increases from new launches and events such as the COSMOS/IRIDIUM collision, the maintenance of high-level Space Situational Awareness (SSA) has become increasingly difficult. To maintain situational awareness of the changing environment, new systems and methods must be developed. The Sensor Exposure, Exploitation and Experimentation Environment (SE4) provides a platform to illustrate “The Art of the Possible” that shows the potential benefit of enriched sensor data collections and real-time data sharing. Through modeling and simulation, and a net-centric architecture, SE4 shows the added value of sharing data in real-time and exposing new types of sensor data. The objective of SE4 is to develop an experimentation and innovation environment for sensor data exposure, composable sensor capabilities, reuse, and exploitation that accelerates the delivery of needed Command and Control, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance capabilities to the warfighter. Through modeling, simulation and rapid prototyping, the art of the possible for a fully-connected, net-centric space Command and Control (C2) and sensor enterprise can be demonstrated. This paper provides results that demonstrate the potential for faster cataloging of breakup events and additional event monitoring that are possible with data available today in the Space Surveillance Network (SSN). Demonstrating the art of the possible for the enterprise will guide net-centric requirements definition and facilitate discussions with stakeholder organizations on the Concept of Operations (CONOPS), policy, and Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTP) evolution necessary to take full advantage of net-centric operations. SE4 aligns with direction from Secretary Gates and the Chairman Joint Chief of Staff that emphasizes the need to get the most out of our existing systems. Continuing to utilize SE4 will enable the enterprise by demonstrating the benefits of applying

  4. Automated motion imagery exploitation for surveillance and reconnaissance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Se, Stephen; Laliberte, France; Kotamraju, Vinay; Dutkiewicz, Melanie

    2012-06-01

    Airborne surveillance and reconnaissance are essential for many military missions. Such capabilities are critical for troop protection, situational awareness, mission planning and others, such as post-operation analysis / damage assessment. Motion imagery gathered from both manned and unmanned platforms provides surveillance and reconnaissance information that can be used for pre- and post-operation analysis, but these sensors can gather large amounts of video data. It is extremely labour-intensive for operators to analyse hours of collected data without the aid of automated tools. At MDA Systems Ltd. (MDA), we have previously developed a suite of automated video exploitation tools that can process airborne video, including mosaicking, change detection and 3D reconstruction, within a GIS framework. The mosaicking tool produces a geo-referenced 2D map from the sequence of video frames. The change detection tool identifies differences between two repeat-pass videos taken of the same terrain. The 3D reconstruction tool creates calibrated geo-referenced photo-realistic 3D models. The key objectives of the on-going project are to improve the robustness, accuracy and speed of these tools, and make them more user-friendly to operational users. Robustness and accuracy are essential to provide actionable intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance information. Speed is important to reduce operator time on data analysis. We are porting some processor-intensive algorithms to run on a Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) in order to improve throughput. Many aspects of video processing are highly parallel and well-suited for optimization on GPUs, which are now commonly available on computers. Moreover, we are extending the tools to handle video data from various airborne platforms and developing the interface to the Coalition Shared Database (CSD). The CSD server enables the dissemination and storage of data from different sensors among NATO countries. The CSD interface allows

  5. Model-supported exploitation of synthetic aperture radar images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chellappa, Rama; Kuttikkad, Shyam; Meth, Reuven; Burlina, Philippe; Shekhar, Chandra S.

    1996-02-01

    We address the application of model-supported exploitation techniques to synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery. The emphasis is on monitoring SAR imagery using wide area 2D and/or 3D site models along with contextual information. We consider here the following tasks useful in monitoring: (a) site model construction using segmentation and labeling techniques, (b) target detection, (c) target classification and indexing, and (d) SAR image-site model registration. The 2-D wide area site models used here for SAR image exploitation differ from typical site models developed for RADIUS applications, in that they do not model specific facilities, but constitute wide area site models of cultural features such as urban clutter areas, roads, clearings, fields, etc. These models may be derived directly from existing site models, possibly constructed from electro-optical (EO) observations. When such models are not available, a set of segmentation and labeling techniques described here can be used for the construction of 2D site models. The use of models can potentially yield critical information which can disambiguate target signatures in SAR images. We address registration of SAR and EO images to a common site model. Specific derivations are given for the case of registration within the RCDE platform. We suggest a constant false alarm rate (CFAR) detection scheme and a topographic primal sketch (TPS) based classification scheme for monitoring target occurrences in SAR images. The TPS of an observed target is matched against candidate targets TPSs synthesized for the preferred target orientation, inferred from context (e.g. road or parking lot targets). Experimental results on real and synthetic SAR images are provided.

  6. Current status EGS Soultz project during geothermal exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genter, A.; Cuenot, N.; Scheiber, J.; Melchert, B.

    2012-04-01

    A three-year research program (2010-2012) associated with the geothermal exploitation of the Soultz-sous-Forêts power plant is on-going with a scientific and technical monitoring. Several hydraulic circulation tests have been running that take into account one production well, GPK-2 and two reinjection wells, GPK-1 and GPK-3: a long term circulation for about 11 months in 2010, and two short term circulation tests in 2011. During the 2010 exploitation, geothermal fluid discharge from GPK-2 reached about 500 000 m3 by producing 18L/s and 164°C. In 2010, more than 400 induced micro-seismicity events occurred with low magnitude. Geochemical monitoring of the fluid discharged from GPK-2 indicates that the chemical composition of this fluid becomes closer to that of the native geothermal brine because it only remains 5% of injected freshwater. Corrosion study done on-site on several kinds of materials indicates a corrosion rate of about 0.2mm/year for re-injection conditions. During 2011, geothermal fluid discharge from GPK-2 reached about 300 000 m3 by producing 24L/s and 159°C. The strategy was to increase the reinjection flow rate in GPK-1 and simultaneously minimize it in GPK-3 in order to decrease reinjection pressure. Induced seismicity activity was very low with only 5 micro-earthquakes in 2011. In parallel, many research works have been carried out for characterizing scaling and the natural radioactivity derived from natural brines circulating within a deep fractured granite reservoir. Because Soultz is the first geothermal power plant in France, many challenges have been outlined, new scientific and technical expertise is raising and will benefit to the French-German consortium for transferring the results to some new geothermal applications through the Upper Rhine Valley.

  7. Exploiting tumor shrinkage through temporal optimization of radiotherapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Unkelbach, Jan; Craft, David; Hong, Theodore; Papp, Dávid; Ramakrishnan, Jagdish; Salari, Ehsan; Wolfgang, John; Bortfeld, Thomas

    2014-06-01

    In multi-stage radiotherapy, a patient is treated in several stages separated by weeks or months. This regimen has been motivated mostly by radiobiological considerations, but also provides an approach to reduce normal tissue dose by exploiting tumor shrinkage. The paper considers the optimal design of multi-stage treatments, motivated by the clinical management of large liver tumors for which normal liver dose constraints prohibit the administration of an ablative radiation dose in a single treatment. We introduce a dynamic tumor model that incorporates three factors: radiation induced cell kill, tumor shrinkage, and tumor cell repopulation. The design of multi-stage radiotherapy is formulated as a mathematical optimization problem in which the total dose to the normal tissue is minimized, subject to delivering the prescribed dose to the tumor. Based on the model, we gain insight into the optimal administration of radiation over time, i.e. the optimal treatment gaps and dose levels. We analyze treatments consisting of two stages in detail. The analysis confirms the intuition that the second stage should be delivered just before the tumor size reaches a minimum and repopulation overcompensates shrinking. Furthermore, it was found that, for a large range of model parameters, approximately one-third of the dose should be delivered in the first stage. The projected benefit of multi-stage treatments in terms of normal tissue sparing depends on model assumptions. However, the model predicts large dose reductions by more than a factor of 2 for plausible model parameters. The analysis of the tumor model suggests that substantial reduction in normal tissue dose can be achieved by exploiting tumor shrinkage via an optimal design of multi-stage treatments. This suggests taking a fresh look at multi-stage radiotherapy for selected disease sites where substantial tumor regression translates into reduced target volumes.

  8. The Illusions and Juxtapositions of Commercial Sexual Exploitation among Youth: Identifying Effective Street-Outreach Strategies

    PubMed Central

    HOLGER-AMBROSE, BETH; LANGMADE, CHEREE; EDINBURGH, LAUREL D.; SAEWYC, ELIZABETH

    2015-01-01

    To explore sexually exploited youths’ perspectives of how street outreach workers can effectively provide outreach and connections to services, we conducted qualitative interviews with 13 female participants, ages 14–22, in a Midwestern U.S. city. Participants reported multiple types of exploitation, most first exploited by age 13, plus substance use, and recurrent homelessness. Nearly all had a pimp, and all used the internet as a venue for sexual exploitation. Participants wanted outreach workers to use “soft words” to refer to exploitation. They expressed contradictory images of their “boyfriend” pimps and their exploitation. They wanted outreach workers to “provide resources,” “be non-judgmental,” ”listen,” and “care.” Street outreach can be one way to support sexually exploited youth, but should occur in multiple settings. PMID:23590353

  9. Rare earth elements exploitation, geopolitical implications and raw materials trading

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chemin, Marie-Charlotte

    2015-04-01

    Rare earth elements (REE) correspond to seventeen elements of the periodic table. They are used in high technology, cracking, electric cars' magnet, metal alloy for batteries, and also in phone construction or ceramics for electronic card. REEs are an important resource for high technology. This project targets 16 years old students in the subject "personalized aid" and will last six weeks. The purpose of this project is to develop autonomy and research in groups for a transdisciplinary work. This project gathers knowledge in geology, geography and economics. During the first session students analyze the geology applications of the REE. They begin the analysis with learning the composition in different rocks such as basalt and diorite to make the link with crystallization. Then they compare it with adakite to understand the formation of these rocks. In the second session, they study REE exploitation. We can find them as oxides in many deposits. The principal concentrations of rare earth elements are associated with uncommon varieties of igneous rocks, such as carbonatites. They can use Qgis, to localize this high concentration. In the third session, they study the environmental costs of REE exploitation. Indeed, the exploitation produces thorium and carcinogenic toxins: sulphates, ammonia and hydrochloric acid. Processing one ton of rare earths produces 2,000 tons of toxic waste. This session focuses, first, on Baotou's region, and then on an example they are free to choose. In the fourth session, they study the geopolitical issues of REE with a focus on China. In fact this country is the largest producer of REE, and is providing 95% of the overall production. REE in China are at the center of a geopolitical strategy. In fact, China implements a sort of protectionism. Indeed, the export tax on REE is very high so, as a foreign company, it is financially attractive to establish a manufacturing subsidiary in China in order to use REE. As a matter of fact

  10. The ESA Scientific Exploitation of Operational Missions element

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Desnos, Yves-Louis; Regner, Peter; Zehner, Claus; Engdahl, Marcus; Benveniste, Jerome; Delwart, Steven; Gascon, Ferran; Mathieu, Pierre-Philippe; Bojkov, Bojan; Koetz, Benjamin; Arino, Olivier; Donlon, Craig; Davidson, Malcolm; Goryl, Philippe; Foumelis, Michael

    2014-05-01

    The objectives of the ESA Scientific Exploitation of Operational Missions (SEOM) programme element are • to federate, support and expand the research community • to strengthen the leadership of European EO research community • to enable the science community to address new scientific research As a preparation for the SEOM element a series of international science users consultation has been organized by ESA in 2012 and 2013 In particular the ESA Living Planet Symposium was successfully organized in Edinburgh September 2013 and involving 1700 participants from 60 countries. The science users recommendations have been gathered and form the basis for the 2014 SEOM work plan approved by ESA member states. The SEOM element is organized along the following action lines: 1. Developing open-source, multi-mission, scientific toolboxes : the new toolboxes for Sentinel 1/2/3 and 5P will be introduced 2. Research and development studies: the first SEOM studies are being launched such as the INSARAP studies for Sentinel 1 interferometry in orbit demonstration , the IAS study to generate an improved spectroscopic database of the trace gas species CH4, H2O, and CO in the 2.3 μm region and SO2 in the UV region for Sentinel 5 P. In addition larger Sentinels for science call will be tendered in 2014 covering grouped studies for Sentinel 1 Land , Sentinel 1 Ocean , Sentinel 2 Land, Sentinel 3 SAR Altimetry ,Sentinel 3 Ocean color, Sentinel 3 Land and Sentinels Synergy . 3. Science users consultation : the Sentinel 2 for Science workshop is planned from 20 to 22 may 2014 at ESRIN to prepare for scientific exploitation of the Sentinel-2 mission (http://seom.esa.int/S2forScience2014 ) . In addition the FRINGE workshop focusing on scientific explotation of Sentinel1 using SAR interferometry is planned to be held at ESA ESRIN in Q2 2015 4. Training the next generation of European EO scientists on the scientific exploitation of Sentinels data: the Advanced Training course Land

  11. Species succession and fishery exploitation in the Great Lakes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, Stanford H.

    1968-01-01

    The species composition of fish in the Great Lakes has undergone continual change since the earliest records. Some changes were caused by enrichment of the environment, but others primarily by an intensive and selective fishery for certain species. Major changes related to the fishery were less frequent before the late 1930's than in recent years and involved few species. Lake sturgeon (Acipenser fulvescens) were overexploited knowingly during the late 1800's because they interfered with fishing for preferred species; sturgeon were greatly reduced in all lakes by the early 1900's. Heavy exploitation accompanied sharp declines of lake herring (Leucichthys artedi) in Lake Erie during the 1920's and lake whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis) in Lake Huron during the 1930's. A rapid succession of fish species in Lakes Huron, Michigan, and Superior that started about 1940 has been caused by selective predation by the sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) on native predatory species, and the resultant shifting emphasis of the fishery and species interaction as various species declined. Lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush) and burbot (Lota lota), the deepwater predators, were depleted first; this favored their prey, the chubs (Leucichthys spp.). The seven species of chubs were influenced differently according to differences in size. Fishing emphasis and predation by sea lampreys were selective for the largest species of chubs as lake trout and burbot declined. A single slow-growing chub, the bloater, was favored and increased, but as the large chubs declined the bloater was exploited by a new trawl fishery. The growth rate and size of the bloater increased, making it more vulnerable to conventional gillnet fishery and lamprey predation. This situation in Lakes Michigan and Huron favored the small alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus) which had recently become established in the upper Great Lakes, and the alewife increased rapidly and dominated the fish stocks of the lakes. The successive

  12. Association and Evidence for Linked Recognition of Type IV Secretion System Proteins VirB9-1, VirB9-2, and VirB10 in Anaplasma marginale

    PubMed Central

    Morse, Kaitlyn; Norimine, Junzo; Palmer, Guy H.; Sutten, Eric L.; Baszler, Timothy V.

    2012-01-01

    Like several other bacterial pathogens, Anaplasma marginale has an outer membrane that induces complete protection from infection and disease. However, the proteins that confer protective immunity and whether protection requires interacting proteins and/or linked T-cell and immunoglobulin G epitopes are not known. Our goal is to target the conserved type IV secretion system (T4SS) to identify conserved, immunogenic membrane proteins that are interacting and linked recognition candidates. Linked recognition is a process by which a B cell is optimally activated by a helper T cell that responds to the same, or physically associated, antigen. A. marginale T4SS proteins VirB2, VirB4-1, VirB4-2, VirB6-1, VirB7, VirB8-2, VirB9-1, VirB9-2, VirB10, VirB11, and VirD4 were screened for their ability to induce IgG and to stimulate CD4+ T cells from outer membrane-vaccinated cattle. VirB9-1, VirB9-2, and VirB10 induced the strongest IgG and T-cell responses in the majority of cattle, although three animals with major histocompatibility complex class II DRB3 restriction fragment length polymorphism types 8/23, 3/16, and 16/27 lacked T-cell responses to VirB9-1, VirB9-1 and VirB9-2, or VirB9-2 and VirB10, respectively. For these animals, VirB9-1-, VirB9-2-, and VirB10-specific IgG production may be associated with T-cell help provided by responses to an interacting protein partner(s). Interacting protein partners indicated by far-Western blotting were confirmed by immunoprecipitation assays and revealed, for the first time, specific interactions of VirB9-1 with VirB9-2 and VirB10. The immunogenicity and interactions of VirB9-1, VirB9-2, and VirB10 justify their testing as a linked protein vaccine against A. marginale. PMID:22038917

  13. Compressive sensing exploiting wavelet-domain dependencies for ECG compression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polania, Luisa F.; Carrillo, Rafael E.; Blanco-Velasco, Manuel; Barner, Kenneth E.

    2012-06-01

    Compressive sensing (CS) is an emerging signal processing paradigm that enables sub-Nyquist sampling of sparse signals. Extensive previous work has exploited the sparse representation of ECG signals in compression applications. In this paper, we propose the use of wavelet domain dependencies to further reduce the number of samples in compressive sensing-based ECG compression while decreasing the computational complexity. R wave events manifest themselves as chains of large coefficients propagating across scales to form a connected subtree of the wavelet coefficient tree. We show that the incorporation of this connectedness as additional prior information into a modified version of the CoSaMP algorithm can significantly reduce the required number of samples to achieve good quality in the reconstruction. This approach also allows more control over the ECG signal reconstruction, in particular, the QRS complex, which is typically distorted when prior information is not included in the recovery. The compression algorithm was tested upon records selected from the MIT-BIH arrhythmia database. Simulation results show that the proposed algorithm leads to high compression ratios associated with low distortion levels relative to state-of-the-art compression algorithms.

  14. Exploiting dimensionality and defect mitigation to create tunable microwave dielectrics.

    PubMed

    Lee, Che-Hui; Orloff, Nathan D; Birol, Turan; Zhu, Ye; Goian, Veronica; Rocas, Eduard; Haislmaier, Ryan; Vlahos, Eftihia; Mundy, Julia A; Kourkoutis, Lena F; Nie, Yuefeng; Biegalski, Michael D; Zhang, Jingshu; Bernhagen, Margitta; Benedek, Nicole A; Kim, Yongsam; Brock, Joel D; Uecker, Reinhard; Xi, X X; Gopalan, Venkatraman; Nuzhnyy, Dmitry; Kamba, Stanislav; Muller, David A; Takeuchi, Ichiro; Booth, James C; Fennie, Craig J; Schlom, Darrell G

    2013-10-24

    The miniaturization and integration of frequency-agile microwave circuits--relevant to electronically tunable filters, antennas, resonators and phase shifters--with microelectronics offers tantalizing device possibilities, yet requires thin films whose dielectric constant at gigahertz frequencies can be tuned by applying a quasi-static electric field. Appropriate systems such as BaxSr1-xTiO3 have a paraelectric-ferroelectric transition just below ambient temperature, providing high tunability. Unfortunately, such films suffer significant losses arising from defects. Recognizing that progress is stymied by dielectric loss, we start with a system with exceptionally low loss--Srn+1TinO3n+1 phases--in which (SrO)2 crystallographic shear planes provide an alternative to the formation of point defects for accommodating non-stoichiometry. Here we report the experimental realization of a highly tunable ground state arising from the emergence of a local ferroelectric instability in biaxially strained Srn+1TinO3n+1 phases with n ≥ 3 at frequencies up to 125 GHz. In contrast to traditional methods of modifying ferroelectrics-doping or strain-in this unique system an increase in the separation between the (SrO)2 planes, which can be achieved by changing n, bolsters the local ferroelectric instability. This new control parameter, n, can be exploited to achieve a figure of merit at room temperature that rivals all known tunable microwave dielectrics. PMID:24132232

  15. Exploiting Unsupervised and Supervised Constraints for Subspace Clustering.

    PubMed

    Hu, Han; Feng, Jianjiang; Zhou, Jie

    2015-08-01

    Data in many image and video analysis tasks can be viewed as points drawn from multiple low-dimensional subspaces with each subspace corresponding to one category or class. One basic task for processing such kind of data is to separate the points according to the underlying subspace, referred to as subspace clustering. Extensive studies have been made on this subject, and nearly all of them use unconstrained subspace models, meaning the points can be drawn from everywhere of a subspace, to represent the data. In this paper, we attempt to do subspace clustering based on a constrained subspace assumption that the data is further restricted in the corresponding subspaces, e.g., belonging to a submanifold or satisfying the spatial regularity constraint. This assumption usually describes the real data better, such as differently moving objects in a video scene and face images of different subjects under varying illumination. A unified integer linear programming optimization framework is used to approach subspace clustering, which can be efficiently solved by a branch-and-bound (BB) method. We also show that various kinds of supervised information, such as subspace number, outlier ratio, pairwise constraints, size prior and etc., can be conveniently incorporated into the proposed framework. Experiments on real data show that the proposed method outperforms the state-of-the-art algorithms significantly in clustering accuracy. The effectiveness of the proposed method in exploiting supervised information is also demonstrated. PMID:26352994

  16. Exploitation of semantic methods to cluster pharmacovigilance terms.

    PubMed

    Dupuch, Marie; Dupuch, Laëtitia; Hamon, Thierry; Grabar, Natalia

    2014-01-01

    Pharmacovigilance is the activity related to the collection, analysis and prevention of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) induced by drugs. This activity is usually performed within dedicated databases (national, European, international...), in which the ADRs declared for patients are usually coded with a specific controlled terminology MedDRA (Medical Dictionary for Drug Regulatory Activities). Traditionally, the detection of adverse drug reactions is performed with data mining algorithms, while more recently the groupings of close ADR terms are also being exploited. The Standardized MedDRA Queries (SMQs) have become a standard in pharmacovigilance. They are created manually by international boards of experts with the objective to group together the MedDRA terms related to a given safety topic. Within the MedDRA version 13, 84 SMQs exist, although several important safety topics are not yet covered. The objective of our work is to propose an automatic method for assisting the creation of SMQs using the clustering of semantically close MedDRA terms. The experimented method relies on semantic approaches: semantic distance and similarity algorithms, terminology structuring methods and term clustering. The obtained results indicate that the proposed unsupervised methods appear to be complementary for this task, they can generate subsets of the existing SMQs and make this process systematic and less time consuming. PMID:24739596

  17. Exploitation of interspecific diversity for monocot crop improvement

    PubMed Central

    King, J; Armstead, I; Harper, J; Ramsey, L; Snape, J; Waugh, R; James, C; Thomas, A; Gasior, D; Kelly, R; Roberts, L; Gustafson, P; King, I

    2013-01-01

    In many cultivated crop species there is limited genetic variation available for the development of new higher yielding varieties adapted to climate change and sustainable farming practises. The distant relatives of crop species provide a vast and largely untapped reservoir of genetic variation for a wide range of agronomically important traits that can be exploited by breeders for crop improvement. In this paper, in what we believe to be the largest introgression programme undertaken in the monocots, we describe the transfer of the entire genome of Festuca pratensis into Lolium perenne in overlapping chromosome segments. The L. perenne/F. pratensis introgressions were identified and characterised via 131 simple sequence repeats and 1612 SNPs anchored to the rice genome. Comparative analyses were undertaken to determine the syntenic relationship between L. perenne/F. pratensis and rice, wheat, barley, sorghum and Brachypodium distachyon. Analyses comparing recombination frequency and gene distribution indicated that a large proportion of the genes within the genome are located in the proximal regions of chromosomes which undergo low/very low frequencies of recombination. Thus, it is proposed that past breeding efforts to produce improved varieties have centred on the subset of genes located in the distal regions of chromosomes where recombination is highest. The use of alien introgression for crop improvement is important for meeting the challenges of global food supply and the monocots such as the forage grasses and cereals, together with recent technological advances in molecular biology, can help meet these challenges. PMID:23321705

  18. Gold microwires based amperometric biosensor exploiting microbial architecture.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Shikha; Srivastava, Sudha

    2013-12-15

    Amalgamation of nanotechnology and biology has opened new horizons for controlled synthesis of nanomaterials of nano and micro-lengthscales for diverse sensing, catalytic and electromechanical applications. Inspired from nature and driven by the need to have nanostructures of desired morphology, microbial architecture has been exploited as a template in the present work. Biocompatible 1-D gold microwires, generated by assembly of amino acid functionalized AuNPs over the proliferating fungal hyphae, served as potential microelectrodes for electron transfer between enzyme and electrode surface. Delocalization of electrons over longer length scales, large surface area provided by assembled AuNPs and high biocompatibility yielded excellent analytical performance characteristics with high sensitivity of 43.2 µA/mM/cm(2) with standard deviation of 0.88% and wide linear range from 5 µM to 20 mM of glucose. The gold microwires thus generated demonstrate appreciable repeatability over 20 cycles in a cyclic voltammogram, and reproducibility with root mean square deviation as low as 1.3%. High stability and biocompatibility attribute these microwires with myriad potential biosensing and catalytic applications in varied domains. PMID:23850785

  19. Efficient terrestrial laser scan segmentation exploiting data structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahmoudabadi, Hamid; Olsen, Michael J.; Todorovic, Sinisa

    2016-09-01

    New technologies such as lidar enable the rapid collection of massive datasets to model a 3D scene as a point cloud. However, while hardware technology continues to advance, processing 3D point clouds into informative models remains complex and time consuming. A common approach to increase processing efficiently is to segment the point cloud into smaller sections. This paper proposes a novel approach for point cloud segmentation using computer vision algorithms to analyze panoramic representations of individual laser scans. These panoramas can be quickly created using an inherent neighborhood structure that is established during the scanning process, which scans at fixed angular increments in a cylindrical or spherical coordinate system. In the proposed approach, a selected image segmentation algorithm is applied on several input layers exploiting this angular structure including laser intensity, range, normal vectors, and color information. These segments are then mapped back to the 3D point cloud so that modeling can be completed more efficiently. This approach does not depend on pre-defined mathematical models and consequently setting parameters for them. Unlike common geometrical point cloud segmentation methods, the proposed method employs the colorimetric and intensity data as another source of information. The proposed algorithm is demonstrated on several datasets encompassing variety of scenes and objects. Results show a very high perceptual (visual) level of segmentation and thereby the feasibility of the proposed algorithm. The proposed method is also more efficient compared to Random Sample Consensus (RANSAC), which is a common approach for point cloud segmentation.

  20. Research trends in wireless visual sensor networks when exploiting prioritization.

    PubMed

    Costa, Daniel G; Guedes, Luiz Affonso; Vasques, Francisco; Portugal, Paulo

    2015-01-01

    The development of wireless sensor networks for control and monitoring functions has created a vibrant investigation scenario, where many critical topics, such as communication efficiency and energy consumption, have been investigated in the past few years. However, when sensors are endowed with low-power cameras for visual monitoring, a new scope of challenges is raised, demanding new research efforts. In this context, the resource-constrained nature of sensor nodes has demanded the use of prioritization approaches as a practical mechanism to lower the transmission burden of visual data over wireless sensor networks. Many works in recent years have considered local-level prioritization parameters to enhance the overall performance of those networks, but global-level policies can potentially achieve better results in terms of visual monitoring efficiency. In this paper, we make a broad review of some recent works on priority-based optimizations in wireless visual sensor networks. Moreover, we envisage some research trends when exploiting prioritization, potentially fostering the development of promising optimizations for wireless sensor networks composed of visual sensors. PMID:25599425

  1. Compressed Sensing MR Image Reconstruction Exploiting TGV and Wavelet Sparsity

    PubMed Central

    Du, Huiqian; Han, Yu; Mei, Wenbo

    2014-01-01

    Compressed sensing (CS) based methods make it possible to reconstruct magnetic resonance (MR) images from undersampled measurements, which is known as CS-MRI. The reference-driven CS-MRI reconstruction schemes can further decrease the sampling ratio by exploiting the sparsity of the difference image between the target and the reference MR images in pixel domain. Unfortunately existing methods do not work well given that contrast changes are incorrectly estimated or motion compensation is inaccurate. In this paper, we propose to reconstruct MR images by utilizing the sparsity of the difference image between the target and the motion-compensated reference images in wavelet transform and gradient domains. The idea is attractive because it requires neither the estimation of the contrast changes nor multiple times motion compensations. In addition, we apply total generalized variation (TGV) regularization to eliminate the staircasing artifacts caused by conventional total variation (TV). Fast composite splitting algorithm (FCSA) is used to solve the proposed reconstruction problem in order to improve computational efficiency. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed method can not only reduce the computational cost but also decrease sampling ratio or improve the reconstruction quality alternatively. PMID:25371704

  2. Comparative analysis of redirection methods for asteroid resource exploitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bazzocchi, Michael C. F.; Emami, M. Reza

    2016-03-01

    An in-depth analysis and systematic comparison of asteroid redirection methods are performed within a resource exploitation framework using different assessment mechanisms. Through this framework, mission objectives and constraints are specified for the redirection of an asteroid from a near-Earth orbit to a stable orbit in the Earth-Moon system. The paper provides a detailed investigation of five redirection methods, i.e., ion beam, tugboat, gravity tractor, laser sublimation, and mass ejector, with respect to their capabilities for a redirection mission. A set of mission level criteria are utilized to assess the performance of each redirection method, and the means of assigning attributes to each criterion is discussed in detail. In addition, the uncertainty in physical characteristics of the asteroid population is quantified through the use of Monte Carlo analysis. The Monte Carlo simulation provides insight into the performance robustness of the redirection methods with respect to the targeted asteroid range. Lastly, the attributes for each redirection method are aggregated using three different multicriteria assessment approaches, i.e., the Analytical Hierarchy Process, a utility-based approach, and a fuzzy aggregation mechanism. The results of each assessment approach as well as recommendations for further studies are discussed in detail.

  3. Exploiting Flexibly Assignable Work to Improve Load Balance

    SciTech Connect

    Pinar, Ali; Hendrickson, Bruce

    2002-12-09

    In many applications of parallel computing, distribution of the data unambiguously implies distribution of work among processors. But there are exceptions where some tasks can be assigned to one of several processors without altering the total volume of communication. In this paper, we study the problem of exploiting this flexibility in assignment of tasks to improve load balance. We first model the problem in terms of network flow and use combinatorial techniques for its solution. Our parametric search algorithms use maximum flow algorithms for probing on a candidate optimal solution value. We describe two algorithms to solve the assignment problem with log W{sub T} and |P| probe calls, where W{sub T} and |P|, respectively, denote the total workload and number of processors. We also define augmenting paths and cuts for this problem, and show that any algorithm based on augmenting paths can be used to find an optimal solution for the task assignment problem. We then consider a continuous version of the problem, and formulate it as a linearly constrained optimization problem, i.e., min ||Ax||{sub {infinity}}, s.t. Bx = d. To avoid solving an intractable {infinity}-norm optimization problem, we show that in this case minimizing the 2-norm is sufficient to minimize the {infinity}-norm, which reduces the problem to the well-studied linearly-constrained least squares problem. The continuous version of the problem has the advantage of being easily amenable to parallelization.

  4. Exploiting apoptosis in photodynamic therapy: is it possible?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rendon, Cesar A.; Lilge, Lothar D.

    2003-06-01

    Glioblastoma Multiforme is the most common form of malignant brain tumors and accounts for approximately 25% of all primary brain tumors. Only 5% of these patients survive longer than 2 years. The standard form of treatment is radiation therapy and surgery if the site is accessible. Different forms of adjuvant chemotherapy have been largely proven unsuccessful. Another form of adjuvant therapy, Photodynamic Therapy (PDT), has undergone preliminary trials showing some promising results but at the cost of increased side effects like rise in intracranial blood pressure and neurological deficiency. Apoptotic cell kill used as a biological treatment endpoint can possibly ameliorate these side effects. This study evaluates the significance of apoptotic cell death in the 9L rat gliosarcoma using the aminolevulinic acid (ALA) induced endogenous photosensitizer Protophorphyrin IX (PpIX). A strong influence of drug incubation time with cell kill was observed. The percentage of apoptotic cell death was less than 10% for 2 and 4 hours incubation times and irradiation times ensuring up to 70 and 80% cell kill respectively. Accumulation of PpIX in the mitochondria and cytoplasm was quantified by confocal fluorescence microscopy showing a linear relationship of PpIX fluorescence with concentration. The possibility of an in vitro threshold in the PDT dose is discussed, above which cell repair mechanisms may become exhausted. In conclusion for the range of parameters investigated, apoptotic cell kill may be hard to exploit therapeutically in this tumor model.

  5. Exploiting motion-based redundancy to enhance microgrid polarimeter imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ratliff, Bradley M.; Tyo, J. Scott; Black, Wiley T.; LaCasse, Charles F.

    2009-08-01

    Microgrid polarimeters are a type of division of focal plane (DoFP) imaging polarimeter that contains a mosaic of pixel-wise micropolarizing elements superimposed upon an FPA sensor. Such a device measures a slightly different polarized state at each pixel. These measurements are combined to estimate the Stokes vector at each pixel in the image. DoFP devices have the advantage that they can obtain Stokes vector image estimates for an entire scene from a single frame capture. However, they suffer from the disadvantage that the neighboring measurements that are used to estimate the Stokes vector images are acquired at differing instantaneous fields of view (IFOV). This IFOV issue leads to false polarization signatures that significantly degrade the Stokes vector images. Interpolation and other image processing strategies can be employed to reduce IFOV artifacts; however these techniques have a limit to the amount of enhancement they can provide on a single microgrid image. Here we investigate algorithms that use multiple microgrid images that contain frame-to-frame global motion to further enhance the Stokes vector image estimates. Motion-based imagery provides additional redundancy that can be exploited to recover information that is "missing" from a single microgrid frame capture. We have found that IFOV and aliasing artifacts can be defeated entirely when these types of algorithms are applied to the data prior to Stokes vector estimation. We demonstrate results on real LWIR microgrid data using a particular resolution enhancement technique from the literature.

  6. On justifying the exploitation of animals in research.

    PubMed

    Sapontzis, S F

    1988-05-01

    In research employing animals we commonly do things to them which would be grossly immoral to do to humans. This paper discusses three possible justifications for so treating animals: (a) it is violating the autonomy of rational beings which makes actions immoral, and animals are not autonomous; (b) due to our participation in the human community, we have special obligations to humans that we do not have to animals; and (c) human life is morally more worthy than animal life. The conclusion of this discussion is that none of these three propositions justifies the routine sacrifice of animal interests for human benefit. Particular attention is paid to the idea that human life is morally more worthy than animal life, because I believe that to be the most common justification for our sacrifice of animal interests in research. The claim of greater worth is considered and criticized from both utilitarian and Kantian perspectives, and the inference from superior worth to being entitled to exploit one's inferiors is also criticized. The paper concludes by recommending a governing principle for research with animals which would bring that research into line with the rejection of hierarchical worldviews, social orders, and value systems which characterizes modern moral progress. PMID:3418247

  7. Development of infant leg coordination: Exploiting passive torques.

    PubMed

    Sargent, Barbara; Scholz, John; Reimann, Hendrik; Kubo, Masayoshi; Fetters, Linda

    2015-08-01

    Leg joint coordination systematically changes over the first months of life, yet there is minimal data on the underlying change in muscle torques that might account for this change in coordination. The purpose of this study is to investigate the contribution of torque changes to early changes in leg joint coordination. Kicking actions were analyzed of 10 full-term infants between 6 and 15-weeks of age using three-dimensional kinematics and kinetics. We found 11 of 15 joint angle pairs demonstrated a change from more in-phase intralimb coordination at 6-weeks to less in-phase coordination at 15-weeks. Although the magnitude of joint torques normalized to the mass of the leg remained relatively consistent, we noted more complex patterns of torque component contribution across ages. By focusing on the change in torques associated with hip-knee joint coordination, we found that less in-phase hip-knee joint coordination at 15-weeks was associated with decreased influence of knee muscle torque and increased influence of knee gravitational and motion-dependent torques, supporting that infants coordinate hip muscle torque with passive knee gravitational and motion-dependent torques to generate kicks with reduced active knee muscle torque. We propose that between 6 and 15-weeks of age less in-phase hip-knee coordination emerges as infants exploit passive dynamics in the coordination of hip and knee motions. PMID:26117493

  8. Informing or Exploiting? Public Reponses to Giuliana Rancic's Health Narrative.

    PubMed

    Bute, Jennifer J; Quinlan, Margaret M; Quandt, Lindsay K

    2016-08-01

    Popular entertainment journalist Giuliana Rancic has shared her struggles with pregnancy loss, infertility, and breast cancer in an array of public forums. In this study, we analyzed online comments responding to public discourses surrounding Rancic's revelations, including her miscarriage and fertility treatments, her breast cancer diagnosis, and her decision to undergo a double mastectomy. Our goal was to explore how the public framed Rancic's health challenges. Using a narrative lens, we argue that online comments reveal the tensions that celebrities like Rancic must manage as they contend with public scrutiny of their stories. Online commenters in this study framed Rancic's narrative as a privileged vantage point in which she exploited her health struggles for personal and financial gain. Our analysis of these comments also demonstrates how Rancic's narrative exists in concert with other discourses that challenge and disrupt her own account of events. The examination of these mediated discourses has implications for understanding the role of celebrity experiences in personal and public conversations about health. PMID:26756357

  9. Exploiting dimensionality and defect mitigation to create tunable microwave dielectrics

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Che-Hui; Orloff, Nathan; Birol, Turan; Zhu, Ye; Goian, Veronica; Haislmaier, Ryan; Vlahos, Eftihia; Mundy, Julia; Nie, Yuefen; Biegalski, Michael D; Zhang, Jingshu; Bernhagen, Margitta; Benedek, Nicole; Kim, Yongsam; Brock, Joel; Uecker, Reinhard; Xi, Xiaoxing; Gopalan, Venkatraman; Nuzhnyy, Dmitry; Kamba, Stanislav; Muller, David; Takeuchi, Ichiro; Booth, James; Fennie, Craig; Schlom, Darrell

    2013-01-01

    The miniaturization and integration of frequency-agile microwave circuits tunable filters, resonators, phase shifters and more with microelectronics offers tantalizing device possibilities, yet requires thin films whose dielectric constant at GHz frequencies can be tuned by applying a quasi-static electric field . Appropriate systems, e.g., BaxSr1 xTiO3, have a paraelectric-to-ferroelectric transition just below ambient temperature, providing high tunability1 . Unfortunately such films suffer significant losses arising from defects. Recognizing that progress is stymied by dielectric loss, we start with a system with exceptionally low loss Srn+1TinO3n+1 phases , where (SrO)2 crystallographic shear , planes provide an alternative to point defect formation for accommodating non-stoichiometry , . Here, we report the experimental realization of a highly tunable ground state arising from the emergence of a local ferroelectric instability in biaxially strained Srn+1TinO3n+1 phases with n 3 at frequencies up to 120 GHz. In contrast to traditional methods of modifying ferroelectrics doping or strain in this rather unique system increasing the separation between the (SrO)2 planes bolsters the local ferroelectric instability. This new control parameter, n, can be exploited to achieve a figure of merit at room temperature that rivals all known tunable microwave dielectrics.

  10. Exploitation of vegetables and fruits through lactic acid fermentation.

    PubMed

    Di Cagno, Raffaella; Coda, Rossana; De Angelis, Maria; Gobbetti, Marco

    2013-02-01

    Lactic acid fermentation represents the easiest and the most suitable way for increasing the daily consumption of fresh-like vegetables and fruits. Literature data are accumulating, and this review aims at describing the main features of the lactic acid bacteria to be used for fermentation. Lactic acid bacteria are a small part of the autochthonous microbiota of vegetables and fruits. The diversity of the microbiota markedly depends on the intrinsic and extrinsic parameters of the plant matrix. Notwithstanding the reliable value of the spontaneous fermentation to stabilize and preserve raw vegetables and fruits, a number of factors are in favour of using selected starters. Two main options may be pursued for the controlled lactic acid fermentation of vegetables and fruits: the use of commercial/allochthonous and the use of autochthonous starters. Several evidences were described in favour of the use of selected autochthonous starters, which are tailored for the specific plant matrix. Pro-technological, sensory and nutritional criteria for selecting starters were reported as well as several functional properties, which were recently ascribed to autochthonous lactic acid bacteria. The main features of the protocols used for the manufacture of traditional, emerging and innovative fermented vegetables and fruits were reviewed. Tailored lactic acid bacteria starters completely exploit the potential of vegetables and fruits, which enhances the hygiene, sensory, nutritional and shelf life properties. PMID:23122495

  11. Bats Track and Exploit Changes in Insect Pest Populations

    PubMed Central

    McCracken, Gary F.; Westbrook, John K.; Brown, Veronica A.; Eldridge, Melanie; Federico, Paula; Kunz, Thomas H.

    2012-01-01

    The role of bats or any generalist predator in suppressing prey populations depends on the predator's ability to track and exploit available prey. Using a qPCR fecal DNA assay, we document significant association between numbers of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) consuming corn earworm (CEW) moths (Helicoverpa zea) and seasonal fluctuations in CEW populations. This result is consistent with earlier research linking the bats' diet to patterns of migration, abundance, and crop infestation by important insect pests. Here we confirm opportunistic feeding on one of the world's most destructive insects and support model estimates of the bats' ecosystem services. Regression analysis of CEW consumption versus the moth's abundance at four insect trapping sites further indicates that bats track local abundance of CEW within the regional landscape. Estimates of CEW gene copies in the feces of bats are not associated with seasonal or local patterns of CEW abundance, and results of captive feeding experiments indicate that our qPCR assay does not provide a direct measure of numbers or biomass of prey consumed. Our results support growing evidence for the role of generalist predators, and bats specifically, as agents for biological control and speak to the value of conserving indigenous generalist predators. PMID:22952782

  12. Bats track and exploit changes in insect pest populations.

    PubMed

    McCracken, Gary F; Westbrook, John K; Brown, Veronica A; Eldridge, Melanie; Federico, Paula; Kunz, Thomas H

    2012-01-01

    The role of bats or any generalist predator in suppressing prey populations depends on the predator's ability to track and exploit available prey. Using a qPCR fecal DNA assay, we document significant association between numbers of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) consuming corn earworm (CEW) moths (Helicoverpa zea) and seasonal fluctuations in CEW populations. This result is consistent with earlier research linking the bats' diet to patterns of migration, abundance, and crop infestation by important insect pests. Here we confirm opportunistic feeding on one of the world's most destructive insects and support model estimates of the bats' ecosystem services. Regression analysis of CEW consumption versus the moth's abundance at four insect trapping sites further indicates that bats track local abundance of CEW within the regional landscape. Estimates of CEW gene copies in the feces of bats are not associated with seasonal or local patterns of CEW abundance, and results of captive feeding experiments indicate that our qPCR assay does not provide a direct measure of numbers or biomass of prey consumed. Our results support growing evidence for the role of generalist predators, and bats specifically, as agents for biological control and speak to the value of conserving indigenous generalist predators. PMID:22952782

  13. The business of exploiting induced pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Prescott, Catherine

    2011-08-12

    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) can be exploited for both research and clinical applications. The first part of this review seeks to provide an understanding of the financial drivers and key elements of a successful business strategy that underpin a company focused on developing iPS-related products and services targeted at the research market. The latter part of the review highlights some of the reasons as to why the reprogramming of somatic cells is currently being used to develop cell-based models to screen for small molecules with drug-like properties rather than to develop cell-based regenerative medicines per se. The latter may be used to repair or replace a patient's damaged cells and thereby have the potential to 'cure' a disease and, in doing so, prevent or delay the onset of associated medical conditions. However, the cost of an expensive regenerative medicine and time to accrue any benefit linked to a decrease in co-morbidity expenditure may not outweigh the benefit for a healthcare community that has finite resources. The implications of this are discussed together with evidence that the UK National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and the National Health Service (NHS) have established a precedent for a cost-sharing strategy with the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:21727138

  14. Exploitation of parallelism in climate models. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Baer, Ferdinand; Tribbia, Joseph J.; Williamson, David L.

    2001-02-05

    This final report includes details on the research accomplished by the grant entitled 'Exploitation of Parallelism in Climate Models' to the University of Maryland. The purpose of the grant was to shed light on (a) how to reconfigure the atmospheric prediction equations such that the time iteration process could be compressed by use of MPP architecture; (b) how to develop local subgrid scale models which can provide time and space dependent parameterization for a state-of-the-art climate model to minimize the scale resolution necessary for a climate model, and to utilize MPP capability to simultaneously integrate those subgrid models and their statistics; and (c) how to capitalize on the MPP architecture to study the inherent ensemble nature of the climate problem. In the process of addressing these issues, we created parallel algorithms with spectral accuracy; we developed a process for concurrent climate simulations; we established suitable model reconstructions to speed up computation; we identified and tested optimum realization statistics; we undertook a number of parameterization studies to better understand model physics; and we studied the impact of subgrid scale motions and their parameterization in atmospheric models.

  15. Polar Lunar Regions: Exploiting Natural and Augmented Thermal Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brannon, David; Ryan, Robert E.; Underwood, Lauren W.; Russell, Kristen

    2010-01-01

    In the polar regions of the Moon, some areas within craters are permanently shadowed from solar illumination and can drop to temperatures of 100 K or lower. These sites may serve as cold traps, capturing ice and other volatile compounds, possibly for eons. Interestingly, ice stored in these locations could potentially alter how lunar exploration is conducted. Within craters inside craters (double-shaded craters) that are shaded from thermal re-radiation and from solar illuminated regions, even colder regions should exist and, in many cases, temperatures in these regions never exceed 50 K. Working in these harsh environments with existing conventional systems, exploration or mining activities could be quite daunting and challenging. However, if the unique characteristics of these environments were exploited, the power, weight, and total mass that is required to be carried from the Earth to the Moon for lunar exploration and research would be substantially reduced. In theory, by minimizing the heat transfer between an object and the lunar surface, temperatures near absolute zero can be produced. In a single or double-shaded crater, if the object was isolated from the variety of thermal sources and was allowed to radiatively cool to space, the achievable temperature would be limited by the 3 K cosmic background and the anomalous solar wind that can strike the object being cooled. Our analysis shows that under many circumstances, with some simple thermal radiation shielding, it is possible to establish environments with temperatures of several degrees Kelvin.

  16. In situ exploitation of deep set porphyry ores

    SciTech Connect

    Hard, R.A.; Harvey, W.W.; Lingane, P.J.; Park, W.C.; Redman, M.J.

    1981-09-29

    Disclosed is a method of economically exploiting deep set porphyry ore bodies of the type containing metal values such as sulfidic copper, nickel, or uranium minerals and minerals capable of absorbing copper, uranium, and nickel ions. The method involves establishing communication with the ore body through access and recovery wells and passing fluids sequentially therethrough. If necessary, thief zones of as low as 25 to 50 md in igneous rock of 1 to 5 md are prevented from distorting flow, by the injection of a polymeric solution of macromolecules with molecular weights of the order of 5 million along the entire wellbore, the higher permeability zones initially accepting the majority of the flow and being impaired at a much faster rate than the less permeable zones. In a first stage, the permeability of the leaching interval is stimulated as an ammoniated solution of sodium, potassium, or ammonium nitrate or chloride contacts calcium containing minerals to promote ion exchange, resulting in clay contraction or calcium carbonate dissolution. In a second stage, the leaching interval is primed as calcium ion is displaced with an aqueous solution of ammonium salt, a calcium sulfate scale inhibitor, and oxygen gas. In a third stage, a two-phase lixiviant comprising entrained oxygen containing bubbles and an ammoniacal leach liquor having a pH less than 10.5 and less than 1.0 mole/liter ammonia is passed through the leaching interval to solubilize copper, nickel, uranium, and other metal values.

  17. Research Trends in Wireless Visual Sensor Networks When Exploiting Prioritization

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Daniel G.; Guedes, Luiz Affonso; Vasques, Francisco; Portugal, Paulo

    2015-01-01

    The development of wireless sensor networks for control and monitoring functions has created a vibrant investigation scenario, where many critical topics, such as communication efficiency and energy consumption, have been investigated in the past few years. However, when sensors are endowed with low-power cameras for visual monitoring, a new scope of challenges is raised, demanding new research efforts. In this context, the resource-constrained nature of sensor nodes has demanded the use of prioritization approaches as a practical mechanism to lower the transmission burden of visual data over wireless sensor networks. Many works in recent years have considered local-level prioritization parameters to enhance the overall performance of those networks, but global-level policies can potentially achieve better results in terms of visual monitoring efficiency. In this paper, we make a broad review of some recent works on priority-based optimizations in wireless visual sensor networks. Moreover, we envisage some research trends when exploiting prioritization, potentially fostering the development of promising optimizations for wireless sensor networks composed of visual sensors. PMID:25599425

  18. Augmented reality enabling intelligence exploitation at the edge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kase, Sue E.; Roy, Heather; Bowman, Elizabeth K.; Patton, Debra

    2015-05-01

    Today's Warfighters need to make quick decisions while interacting in densely populated environments comprised of friendly, hostile, and neutral host nation locals. However, there is a gap in the real-time processing of big data streams for edge intelligence. We introduce a big data processing pipeline called ARTEA that ingests, monitors, and performs a variety of analytics including noise reduction, pattern identification, and trend and event detection in the context of an area of operations (AOR). Results of the analytics are presented to the Soldier via an augmented reality (AR) device Google Glass (Glass). Non-intrusive AR devices such as Glass can visually communicate contextually relevant alerts to the Soldier based on the current mission objectives, time, location, and observed or sensed activities. This real-time processing and AR presentation approach to knowledge discovery flattens the intelligence hierarchy enabling the edge Soldier to act as a vital and active participant in the analysis process. We report preliminary observations testing ARTEA and Glass in a document exploitation and person of interest scenario simulating edge Soldier participation in the intelligence process in disconnected deployment conditions.

  19. The business of exploiting induced pluripotent stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Prescott, Catherine

    2011-01-01

    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS cells) can be exploited for both research and clinical applications. The first part of this review seeks to provide an understanding of the financial drivers and key elements of a successful business strategy that underpin a company focused on developing iPS-related products and services targeted at the research market. The latter part of the review highlights some of the reasons as to why the reprogramming of somatic cells is currently being used to develop cell-based models to screen for small molecules with drug-like properties rather than to develop cell-based regenerative medicines per se. The latter may be used to repair or replace a patient's damaged cells and thereby have the potential to ‘cure’ a disease and, in doing so, prevent or delay the onset of associated medical conditions. However, the cost of an expensive regenerative medicine and time to accrue any benefit linked to a decrease in co-morbidity expenditure may not outweigh the benefit for a healthcare community that has finite resources. The implications of this are discussed together with evidence that the UK National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and the National Health Service (NHS) have established a precedent for a cost-sharing strategy with the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:21727138

  20. Solving Optimal Control Problems by Exploiting Inherent Dynamical Systems Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flaßkamp, Kathrin; Ober-Blöbaum, Sina; Kobilarov, Marin

    2012-08-01

    Computing globally efficient solutions is a major challenge in optimal control of nonlinear dynamical systems. This work proposes a method combining local optimization and motion planning techniques based on exploiting inherent dynamical systems structures, such as symmetries and invariant manifolds. Prior to the optimal control, the dynamical system is analyzed for structural properties that can be used to compute pieces of trajectories that are stored in a motion planning library. In the context of mechanical systems, these motion planning candidates, termed primitives, are given by relative equilibria induced by symmetries and motions on stable or unstable manifolds of e.g. fixed points in the natural dynamics. The existence of controlled relative equilibria is studied through Lagrangian mechanics and symmetry reduction techniques. The proposed framework can be used to solve boundary value problems by performing a search in the space of sequences of motion primitives connected using optimized maneuvers. The optimal sequence can be used as an admissible initial guess for a post-optimization. The approach is illustrated by two numerical examples, the single and the double spherical pendula, which demonstrates its benefit compared to standard local optimization techniques.

  1. Improving industrial yeast strains: exploiting natural and artificial diversity.

    PubMed

    Steensels, Jan; Snoek, Tim; Meersman, Esther; Picca Nicolino, Martina; Voordeckers, Karin; Verstrepen, Kevin J

    2014-09-01

    Yeasts have been used for thousands of years to make fermented foods and beverages, such as beer, wine, sake, and bread. However, the choice for a particular yeast strain or species for a specific industrial application is often based on historical, rather than scientific grounds. Moreover, new biotechnological yeast applications, such as the production of second-generation biofuels, confront yeast with environments and challenges that differ from those encountered in traditional food fermentations. Together, this implies that there are interesting opportunities to isolate or generate yeast variants that perform better than the currently used strains. Here, we discuss the different strategies of strain selection and improvement available for both conventional and nonconventional yeasts. Exploiting the existing natural diversity and using techniques such as mutagenesis, protoplast fusion, breeding, genome shuffling and directed evolution to generate artificial diversity, or the use of genetic modification strategies to alter traits in a more targeted way, have led to the selection of superior industrial yeasts. Furthermore, recent technological advances allowed the development of high-throughput techniques, such as 'global transcription machinery engineering' (gTME), to induce genetic variation, providing a new source of yeast genetic diversity. PMID:24724938

  2. A legal market in organs: the problem of exploitation.

    PubMed

    Greasley, Kate

    2014-01-01

    The article considers the objection to a commercial market in living donor organs for transplantation on the ground that such a market would be exploitative of the vendors. It examines a key challenge to that objection, to the effect that denying poor people the option to sell an organ is to withhold from them the best that a bad situation has to offer. The article casts serious doubt on this attempt at justifying an organ market, and its philosophical underpinning. Drawing, in part, from the catalogued consequences of a thriving kidney market in some parts of India, it is argued that the justification relies on conditions which are extremely unlikely to obtain, even in a regulated donor market: that organ selling meaningfully improves the material situation of the organ vendor. Far from being axiomatic, both logic and the extant empirical evidence point towards the unlikelihood of such an upshot. Finally, the article considers a few conventional counter-arguments in favour of a permissive stance on organ sales. PMID:23001920

  3. Energy harvesting from human motion: exploiting swing and shock excitations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ylli, K.; Hoffmann, D.; Willmann, A.; Becker, P.; Folkmer, B.; Manoli, Y.

    2015-02-01

    Modern compact and low power sensors and systems are leading towards increasingly integrated wearable systems. One key bottleneck of this technology is the power supply. The use of energy harvesting techniques offers a way of supplying sensor systems without the need for batteries and maintenance. In this work we present the development and characterization of two inductive energy harvesters which exploit different characteristics of the human gait. A multi-coil topology harvester is presented which uses the swing motion of the foot. The second device is a shock-type harvester which is excited into resonance upon heel strike. Both devices were modeled and designed with the key constraint of device height in mind, in order to facilitate the integration into the shoe sole. The devices were characterized under different motion speeds and with two test subjects on a treadmill. An average power output of up to 0.84 mW is achieved with the swing harvester. With a total device volume including the housing of 21 cm3 a power density of 40 μW cm-3 results. The shock harvester generates an average power output of up to 4.13 mW. The power density amounts to 86 μW cm-3 for the total device volume of 48 cm3. Difficulties and potential improvements are discussed briefly.

  4. Commercial imagery archive, management, exploitation, and distribution project development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hollinger, Bruce; Sakkas, Alysa

    1999-10-01

    The Lockheed Martin (LM) team had garnered over a decade of operational experience on the U.S. Government's IDEX II (Imagery Dissemination and Exploitation) system. Recently, it set out to create a new commercial product to serve the needs of large-scale imagery archiving and analysis markets worldwide. LM decided to provide a turnkey commercial solution to receive, store, retrieve, process, analyze and disseminate in 'push' or 'pull' modes imagery, data and data products using a variety of sources and formats. LM selected 'best of breed' hardware and software components and adapted and developed its own algorithms to provide added functionality not commercially available elsewhere. The resultant product, Intelligent Library System (ILS)TM, satisfies requirements for (1) a potentially unbounded, data archive (5000 TB range) (2) automated workflow management for increased user productivity; (3) automatic tracking and management of files stored on shelves; (4) ability to ingest, process and disseminate data volumes with bandwidths ranging up to multi- gigabit per second; (5) access through a thin client-to-server network environment; (6) multiple interactive users needing retrieval of files in seconds from both archived images or in real time, and (7) scalability that maintains information throughput performance as the size of the digital library grows.

  5. Commercial imagery archive, management, exploitation, and distribution product development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hollinger, Bruce; Sakkas, Alysa

    1999-12-01

    The Lockheed Martin (LM) team had garnered over a decade of operational experience on the U.S. Government's IDEX II (Imagery Dissemination and Exploitation) system. Recently, it set out to create a new commercial product to serve the needs of large-scale imagery archiving and analysis markets worldwide. LM decided to provide a turnkey commercial solution to receive, store, retrieve, process, analyze and disseminate in 'push' or 'pull' modes imagery, data and data products using a variety of sources and formats. LM selected 'best of breed' hardware and software components and adapted and developed its own algorithms to provide added functionality not commercially available elsewhere. The resultant product, Intelligent Library System (ILS)TM, satisfies requirements for (a) a potentially unbounded, data archive (5000 TB range) (b) automated workflow management for increased user productivity; (c) automatic tracking and management of files stored on shelves; (d) ability to ingest, process and disseminate data volumes with bandwidths ranging up to multi- gigabit per second; (e) access through a thin client-to-server network environment; (f) multiple interactive users needing retrieval of files in seconds from both archived images or in real time, and (g) scalability that maintains information throughput performance as the size of the digital library grows.

  6. Exploiting models of molecular evolution to efficiently direct protein engineering.

    PubMed

    Cole, Megan F; Gaucher, Eric A

    2011-02-01

    Directed evolution and protein engineering approaches used to generate novel or enhanced biomolecular function often use the evolutionary sequence diversity of protein homologs to rationally guide library design. To fully capture this sequence diversity, however, libraries containing millions of variants are often necessary. Screening libraries of this size is often undesirable due to inaccuracies of high-throughput assays, costs, and time constraints. The ability to effectively cull sequence diversity while still generating the functional diversity within a library thus holds considerable value. This is particularly relevant when high-throughput assays are not amenable to select/screen for certain biomolecular properties. Here, we summarize our recent attempts to develop an evolution-guided approach, Reconstructing Evolutionary Adaptive Paths (REAP), for directed evolution and protein engineering that exploits phylogenetic and sequence analyses to identify amino acid substitutions that are likely to alter or enhance function of a protein. To demonstrate the utility of this technique, we highlight our previous work with DNA polymerases in which a REAP-designed small library was used to identify a DNA polymerase capable of accepting non-standard nucleosides. We anticipate that the REAP approach will be used in the future to facilitate the engineering of biopolymers with expanded functions and will thus have a significant impact on the developing field of 'evolutionary synthetic biology'. PMID:21132281

  7. Improving industrial yeast strains: exploiting natural and artificial diversity

    PubMed Central

    Steensels, Jan; Snoek, Tim; Meersman, Esther; Nicolino, Martina Picca; Voordeckers, Karin; Verstrepen, Kevin J

    2014-01-01

    Yeasts have been used for thousands of years to make fermented foods and beverages, such as beer, wine, sake, and bread. However, the choice for a particular yeast strain or species for a specific industrial application is often based on historical, rather than scientific grounds. Moreover, new biotechnological yeast applications, such as the production of second-generation biofuels, confront yeast with environments and challenges that differ from those encountered in traditional food fermentations. Together, this implies that there are interesting opportunities to isolate or generate yeast variants that perform better than the currently used strains. Here, we discuss the different strategies of strain selection and improvement available for both conventional and nonconventional yeasts. Exploiting the existing natural diversity and using techniques such as mutagenesis, protoplast fusion, breeding, genome shuffling and directed evolution to generate artificial diversity, or the use of genetic modification strategies to alter traits in a more targeted way, have led to the selection of superior industrial yeasts. Furthermore, recent technological advances allowed the development of high-throughput techniques, such as ‘global transcription machinery engineering’ (gTME), to induce genetic variation, providing a new source of yeast genetic diversity. PMID:24724938

  8. Methods for spectral image analysis by exploiting spatial simplicity

    DOEpatents

    Keenan, Michael R.

    2010-05-25

    Several full-spectrum imaging techniques have been introduced in recent years that promise to provide rapid and comprehensive chemical characterization of complex samples. One of the remaining obstacles to adopting these techniques for routine use is the difficulty of reducing the vast quantities of raw spectral data to meaningful chemical information. Multivariate factor analysis techniques, such as Principal Component Analysis and Alternating Least Squares-based Multivariate Curve Resolution, have proven effective for extracting the essential chemical information from high dimensional spectral image data sets into a limited number of components that describe the spectral characteristics and spatial distributions of the chemical species comprising the sample. There are many cases, however, in which those constraints are not effective and where alternative approaches may provide new analytical insights. For many cases of practical importance, imaged samples are "simple" in the sense that they consist of relatively discrete chemical phases. That is, at any given location, only one or a few of the chemical species comprising the entire sample have non-zero concentrations. The methods of spectral image analysis of the present invention exploit this simplicity in the spatial domain to make the resulting factor models more realistic. Therefore, more physically accurate and interpretable spectral and abundance components can be extracted from spectral images that have spatially simple structure.

  9. Methods for spectral image analysis by exploiting spatial simplicity

    DOEpatents

    Keenan, Michael R.

    2010-11-23

    Several full-spectrum imaging techniques have been introduced in recent years that promise to provide rapid and comprehensive chemical characterization of complex samples. One of the remaining obstacles to adopting these techniques for routine use is the difficulty of reducing the vast quantities of raw spectral data to meaningful chemical information. Multivariate factor analysis techniques, such as Principal Component Analysis and Alternating Least Squares-based Multivariate Curve Resolution, have proven effective for extracting the essential chemical information from high dimensional spectral image data sets into a limited number of components that describe the spectral characteristics and spatial distributions of the chemical species comprising the sample. There are many cases, however, in which those constraints are not effective and where alternative approaches may provide new analytical insights. For many cases of practical importance, imaged samples are "simple" in the sense that they consist of relatively discrete chemical phases. That is, at any given location, only one or a few of the chemical species comprising the entire sample have non-zero concentrations. The methods of spectral image analysis of the present invention exploit this simplicity in the spatial domain to make the resulting factor models more realistic. Therefore, more physically accurate and interpretable spectral and abundance components can be extracted from spectral images that have spatially simple structure.

  10. Method for hyperspectral imagery exploitation and pixel spectral unmixing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, Ching-Fang (Inventor)

    2003-01-01

    An efficiently hybrid approach to exploit hyperspectral imagery and unmix spectral pixels. This hybrid approach uses a genetic algorithm to solve the abundance vector for the first pixel of a hyperspectral image cube. This abundance vector is used as initial state in a robust filter to derive the abundance estimate for the next pixel. By using Kalman filter, the abundance estimate for a pixel can be obtained in one iteration procedure which is much fast than genetic algorithm. The output of the robust filter is fed to genetic algorithm again to derive accurate abundance estimate for the current pixel. The using of robust filter solution as starting point of the genetic algorithm speeds up the evolution of the genetic algorithm. After obtaining the accurate abundance estimate, the procedure goes to next pixel, and uses the output of genetic algorithm as the previous state estimate to derive abundance estimate for this pixel using robust filter. And again use the genetic algorithm to derive accurate abundance estimate efficiently based on the robust filter solution. This iteration continues until pixels in a hyperspectral image cube end.

  11. Thermal exploitation of wastes with lignite for energy production.

    PubMed

    Grammelis, Panagiotis; Kakaras, Emmanuel; Skodras, George

    2003-11-01

    The thermal exploitation of wastewood with Greek lignite was investigated by performing tests in a laboratory-scale fluidized bed reactor, a 1-MW(th) semi-industrial circulating fluidized bed combustor, and an industrial boiler. Blends of natural wood, demolition wood, railroad sleepers, medium-density fiberboard residues, and power poles with lignite were used, and the co-combustion efficiency and the effect of wastewood addition on the emitted pollutants were investigated. Carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and oxides of nitrogen emissions were continuously monitored, and, during the industrial-scale tests, the toxic emissions (polychlorinated dibenzodioxins and dibenzofurans and heavy metals) were determined. Ash samples were analyzed for heavy metals in an inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectroscopy spectrophotometer. Problems were observed during the preparation of wastewood, because species embedded with different compounds, such as railway sleepers and demolition wood, were not easily treated. All wastewood blends were proven good fuels; co-combustion proceeded smoothly and homogeneous temperature and pressure profiles were obtained. Although some fluctuations were observed, low emissions of gaseous pollutants were obtained for all fuel blends. The metal element emissions (in the flue gases and the solid residues) were lower than the legislative limits. Therefore, wastewood co-combustion with lignite can be realized, provided that the fuel handling and preparation can be practically performed in large-scale installations. PMID:14649749

  12. Systematic Exploitation of Multiple Receptor Conformations for Virtual Ligand Screening

    PubMed Central

    Bottegoni, Giovanni; Rocchia, Walter; Rueda, Manuel; Abagyan, Ruben; Cavalli, Andrea

    2011-01-01

    The role of virtual ligand screening in modern drug discovery is to mine large chemical collections and to prioritize for experimental testing a comparatively small and diverse set of compounds with expected activity against a target. Several studies have pointed out that the performance of virtual ligand screening can be improved by taking into account receptor flexibility. Here, we systematically assess how multiple crystallographic receptor conformations, a powerful way of discretely representing protein plasticity, can be exploited in screening protocols to separate binders from non-binders. Our analyses encompass 36 targets of pharmaceutical relevance and are based on actual molecules with reported activity against those targets. The results suggest that an ensemble receptor-based protocol displays a stronger discriminating power between active and inactive molecules as compared to its standard single rigid receptor counterpart. Moreover, such a protocol can be engineered not only to enrich a higher number of active compounds, but also to enhance their chemical diversity. Finally, some clear indications can be gathered on how to select a subset of receptor conformations that is most likely to provide the best performance in a real life scenario. PMID:21625529

  13. Exploiting data parallelism in the Image Content Engine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, W. Marcus; Garlick, Jim E.; Weinert, George F.; Abdulla, Ghaleb M.

    2006-05-01

    The Image Content Engine (ICE) is a framework of software and underlying mathematical and physical models that enable scientists and analysts to extract features from Terabytes of imagery and search the extracted features for content relevant to their problem domain. The ICE team has developed a set of tools for feature extraction and analysis of image data, primarily based on the image content. The scale and volume of imagery that must be searched presents a formidable computation and data bandwidth challenge, and a search of moderate to large scale imagery quickly becomes intractable without exploiting high degrees of data parallelism in the feature extraction engine. In this paper we describe the software and hardware architecture developed to build a data parallel processing engine for ICE. We discuss our highly tunable parallel process and job scheduling subsystem, remote procedure invocation, parallel I/O strategy, and our experience in running ICE on a 16 node, 32 processing element (CPU) Linux Cluster. We present performance and benchmark results, and describe how we obtain excellent speedup for the imagery searches in our test-bed prototype.

  14. Exploiting Temporal Collateral Sensitivity in Tumor Clonal Evolution.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Boyang; Sedlak, Joseph C; Srinivas, Raja; Creixell, Pau; Pritchard, Justin R; Tidor, Bruce; Lauffenburger, Douglas A; Hemann, Michael T

    2016-03-24

    The prevailing approach to addressing secondary drug resistance in cancer focuses on treating the resistance mechanisms at relapse. However, the dynamic nature of clonal evolution, along with potential fitness costs and cost compensations, may present exploitable vulnerabilities-a notion that we term "temporal collateral sensitivity." Using a combined pharmacological screen and drug resistance selection approach in a murine model of Ph(+) acute lymphoblastic leukemia, we indeed find that temporal and/or persistent collateral sensitivity to non-classical BCR-ABL1 drugs arises in emergent tumor subpopulations during the evolution of resistance toward initial treatment with BCR-ABL1-targeted inhibitors. We determined the sensitization mechanism via genotypic, phenotypic, signaling, and binding measurements in combination with computational models and demonstrated significant overall survival extension in mice. Additional stochastic mathematical models and small-molecule screens extended our insights, indicating the value of focusing on evolutionary trajectories and pharmacological profiles to identify new strategies to treat dynamic tumor vulnerabilities. PMID:26924578

  15. LALPC: Exploiting Parallelism from FPGAs Using C Language

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porto, Lucas F.; Fernandes, Marcio M.; Bonato, Vanderlei; Menotti, Ricardo

    2015-10-01

    This paper presents LALPC, a prototype high-level synthesis tool, specialized in hardware generation for loop-intensive code segments. As demonstrated in a previous work, the underlying hardware components target by LALPC are highly specialized for loop pipeline execution, resulting in efficient implementations, both in terms of performance and resources usage (silicon area). LALPC extends the functionality of a previous tool by using a subset of the C language as input code to describe computations, improving the usability and potential acceptance of the technique among developers. LALPC also enhances parallelism exploitation by applying loop unrolling, and providing support for automatic generation and scheduling of parallel memory accesses. The combination of using the C language to automate the process of hardware design, with an efficient underlying scheme to support loop pipelining, constitutes the main goal and contribution of the work described in this paper. Experimental results have shown the effectiveness of those techniques to enhance performance, and also exemplifies how some of the LALPC compiler features may support performance-resources trade-off analysis tasks.

  16. Selective tumor destruction with photodynamic therapy: exploitation of photodynamic thresholds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barr, Hugh

    1991-11-01

    The uptake and distribution of the photosensitizer aluminum sulphonated phthalocyanine (AlSPc) has been studied. In a variety of experimentally induced gastrointestinal tumors the photosensitizer is retained between 24 - 48 hours after intravenous administration compared with the adjacent normal tissue in which the tumor arose. However, the maximum tumor-to- normal-tissue ratio was only 2:1. Quantitative fluorescence photometry using digital image processing, with a CCD camera and helium neon laser, was used to probe the microscopic localization of the photosensitizer in tissue sections of tumor and normal tissue. Selective localization of the photosensitizer was nonspecific in tumor stroma and there was never any significant difference between normal and neoplastic cells. Exploitation of the small differences in photosensitizer concentration, photodynamic threshold effects, and photosensitizer photodegration allows up to 2 mm of selective tumor damage to be produced in a tumor, when a similar light dose will produce no damage in adjacent normal tissue. However, selective eradication of a tumor without adjacent tissue damage will not be possible by using these methods. This paper reviews this previously reported data.

  17. Plant stress signalling: understanding and exploiting plant-plant interactions.

    PubMed

    Pickett, J A; Rasmussen, H B; Woodcock, C M; Matthes, M; Napier, J A

    2003-02-01

    When plants are attacked by insects, volatile chemical signals can be released, not only from the damaged parts, but also systemically from other parts of the plant and this continues after cessation of feeding by the insect. These signals are perceived by olfactory sensory mechanisms in both the herbivorous insects and their parasites. Molecular structures involved can be characterized by means of electrophysiological assays, using the insect sensory system linked to chemical analysis. Evidence is mounting that such signals can also affect neighbouring intact plants, which initiate defence by the induction of further signalling systems, such as those that increase parasitoid foraging. Furthermore, insect electrophysiology can be used in the identification of plant compounds having effects on the plants themselves. It has been found recently that certain plants can release stress signals even when undamaged, and that these can cause defence responses in intact plants. These discoveries provide the basis for new crop protection strategies, that are either delivered by genetic modification of plants or by conventionally produced plants to which the signal is externally applied. Delivery can also be made by means of mixed seed strategies in which the provoking and recipient plants are grown together. Related signalling discoveries within the rhizosphere seem set to extend these approaches into new ways of controlling weeds, by exploiting the elusive potential of allelopathy, but through signalling rather than by direct physiological effects. PMID:12546668

  18. Use Hierarchical Storage and Analysis to Exploit Intrinsic Parallelism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zender, C. S.; Wang, W.; Vicente, P.

    2013-12-01

    Big Data is an ugly name for the scientific opportunities and challenges created by the growing wealth of geoscience data. How to weave large, disparate datasets together to best reveal their underlying properties, to exploit their strengths and minimize their weaknesses, to continually aggregate more information than the world knew yesterday and less than we will learn tomorrow? Data analytics techniques (statistics, data mining, machine learning, etc.) can accelerate pattern recognition and discovery. However, often researchers must, prior to analysis, organize multiple related datasets into a coherent framework. Hierarchical organization permits entire dataset to be stored in nested groups that reflect their intrinsic relationships and similarities. Hierarchical data can be simpler and faster to analyze by coding operators to automatically parallelize processes over isomorphic storage units, i.e., groups. The newest generation of netCDF Operators (NCO) embody this hierarchical approach, while still supporting traditional analysis approaches. We will use NCO to demonstrate the trade-offs involved in processing a prototypical Big Data application (analysis of CMIP5 datasets) using hierarchical and traditional analysis approaches.

  19. Exploiting Data Parallelism in the Image Content Engine

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, W M; Garlick, J E; Weinert, G F; Abdulla, G M

    2006-03-09

    The Image Content Engine (ICE) is a framework of software and underlying mathematical and physical models that enable scientists and analysts to extract features from Terabytes of imagery and search the extracted features for content relevant to their problem domain. The ICE team has developed a set of tools for feature extraction and analysis of image data, primarily based on the image content. The scale and volume of imagery that must be searched presents a formidable computation and data bandwidth challenge, and a search of moderate to large scale imagery quickly becomes intractable without exploiting high degrees of data parallelism in the feature extraction engine. In this paper we describe the software and hardware architecture developed to build a data parallel processing engine for ICE. We discuss our highly tunable parallel process and job scheduling subsystem, remote procedure invocation, parallel I/O strategy, and our experience in running ICE on a 16 node, 32 processing element (CPU) Linux Cluster. We present performance and benchmark results, and describe how we obtain excellent speedup for the imagery searches in our test-bed prototype.

  20. Exploiting pallidal plasticity for stimulation in Parkinson’s disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lourens, Marcel A. J.; Schwab, Bettina C.; Nirody, Jasmine A.; Meijer, Hil G. E.; van Gils, Stephan A.

    2015-04-01

    Objective. Continuous application of high-frequency deep brain stimulation (DBS) often effectively reduces motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease patients. While there is a growing need for more effective and less traumatic stimulation, the exact mechanism of DBS is still unknown. Here, we present a methodology to exploit the plasticity of GABAergic synapses inside the external globus pallidus (GPe) for the optimization of DBS. Approach. Assuming the existence of spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) at GABAergic GPe-GPe synapses, we simulate neural activity in a network model of the subthalamic nucleus and GPe. In particular, we test different DBS protocols in our model and quantify their influence on neural synchrony. Main results. In an exemplary set of biologically plausible model parameters, we show that STDP in the GPe has a direct influence on neural activity and especially the stability of firing patterns. STDP stabilizes both uncorrelated firing in the healthy state and correlated firing in the parkinsonian state. Alternative stimulation protocols such as coordinated reset stimulation can clearly profit from the stabilizing effect of STDP. These results are widely independent of the STDP learning rule. Significance. Once the model settings, e.g., connection architectures, have been described experimentally, our model can be adjusted and directly applied in the development of novel stimulation protocols. More efficient stimulation leads to both minimization of side effects and savings in battery power.