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Sample records for capocaccia manuela merli

  1. MER SPICE Interface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sayfi, Elias

    2004-01-01

    MER SPICE Interface is a software module for use in conjunction with the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission and the SPICE software system of the Navigation and Ancillary Information Facility (NAIF) at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (SPICE is used to acquire, record, and disseminate engineering, navigational, and other ancillary data describing circumstances under which data were acquired by spaceborne scientific instruments.) Given a Spacecraft Clock value, MER SPICE Interface extracts MER-specific data from SPICE kernels (essentially, raw data files) and calculates values for Planet Day Number, Local Solar Longitude, Local Solar Elevation, Local Solar Azimuth, and Local Solar Time (UTC). MER SPICE Interface was adapted from a subroutine, denoted m98SpiceIF written by Payam Zamani, that was intended to calculate SPICE values for the Mars Polar Lander. The main difference between MER SPICE Interface and m98SpiceIf is that MER SPICE Interface does not explicitly call CHRONOS, a time-conversion program that is part of a library of utility subprograms within SPICE. Instead, MER SPICE Interface mimics some portions of the CHRONOS code, the advantage being that it executes much faster and can efficiently be called from a pipeline of events in a parallel processing environment.

  2. Alone You Are Nobody, Together We Float: The Manuela Ramos Movement. Quality/Calidad/Qualite Number 10.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rogow, Debbie

    The Manuela Ramos Movement began in the 1970s when seven women in Lima, Peru, started meeting each Tuesday to reconsider their assumptions about everyday life. By 1980, the group formed a nongovernmental organization whose strategy was to train women community leaders in Lima's barrios through workshops focusing on the following themes: identity…

  3. Learning Cultures in Travel and Tourism: A Critique of Manuela du Bois-Reymond's Trendsetter Learner Thesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morrison, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    This article aims to contribute to the discussion surrounding Manuela du Bois-Reymond's important "trendsetter learner" thesis and, in so doing, to join the wider debate about post-compulsory learning cultures. The article outlines the trendsetter learner thesis and then considers recent criticisms that it has attracted. While the author concurs…

  4. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

    MedlinePlus

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus; MERS-CoV; Novel coronavirus; nCoV ... Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Middle East ... 2, 2015. www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/mers/faq.html . Accessed April ...

  5. MER Telemetry Processor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Hyun H.

    2012-01-01

    MERTELEMPROC processes telemetered data in data product format and generates Experiment Data Records (EDRs) for many instruments (HAZCAM, NAVCAM, PANCAM, microscopic imager, Moessbauer spectrometer, APXS, RAT, and EDLCAM) on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER). If the data is compressed, then MERTELEMPROC decompresses the data with an appropriate decompression algorithm. There are two compression algorithms (ICER and LOCO) used in MER. This program fulfills a MER specific need to generate Level 1 products within a 60-second time requirement. EDRs generated by this program are used by merinverter, marscahv, marsrad, and marsjplstereo to generate higher-level products for the mission operations. MERTELEPROC was the first GDS program to process the data product. Metadata of the data product is in XML format. The software allows user-configurable input parameters, per-product processing (not streambased processing), and fail-over is allowed if the leading image header is corrupted. It is used within the MER automated pipeline. MERTELEMPROC is part of the OPGS (Operational Product Generation Subsystem) automated pipeline, which analyzes images returned by in situ spacecraft and creates level 1 products to assist in operations, science, and outreach.

  6. MER ARA pyroshock test results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, Kurng Y.

    2004-01-01

    This paper presents the shock test results achieved in the MER ARA/brush motor pyroshock qualification. The results of MER flight system pyrofiring tests in comparison with the ARA shock test requirements are discussed herein. Alternate test methods were developed in an effort to qualify the critical MER equipment for adequate performance in the actual flight pyroshock condition.

  7. Analyzing MER Uplink Reports

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Savin, Stephen C.

    2005-01-01

    The MER project includes two rovers working simultaneously on opposite sides of Mars each receiving commands only once a day. Creating this uplink is critical, since a failed uplink means a lost day and a waste of money. Examining the process of creating this uplink, I tracked the use of the system developed for requesting observations as well as the development, from stage to stage, in forming an activity plan. I found the system for requesting observations was commonly misused, if used at all. There are half a dozen reports to document the creation of the uplink plan and often there are discrepancies among them. Despite this, the uplink process worked very well and MER has been one of the most successful missions for NASA in recent memory. Still it is clear there is room for improvement.

  8. Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)

    PubMed Central

    Cunha, Cheston B; Opal, Steven M

    2014-01-01

    Coronaviruses have traditionally been associated with mild upper respiratory tract infections throughout the world. In the fall of 2002, a new coronavirus emerged in in Asia causing severe viral pneumonia, i.e., severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). Nearly a decade following the SARS epidemic, a new coronavirus causing severe viral pneumonia has emerged, i.e., middle east respiratory syndrome (MERS). Since the initial case of MERS-CoV occurred in June of 2012 in Saudi Arabia there have been 688 confirmed cases and 282 deaths in 20 countries.   Although both SARS and MERS are caused by coronaviruses, SARS was characterized by efficient human transmission and relatively low mortality rate. In contrast, MERS is relatively inefficiently transmitted to humans but has a high mortality rate. Given the potential overlap in presentation and manifestation, it is important to understand the clinical and epidemiologic differences between MERS, SARS and influenza. PMID:25089913

  9. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

    MedlinePlus

    ... United Kingdom (UK), and United States of America (USA). CDC Commentary: Be on the Lookout for MERS- ... OIG 1600 Clifton Road Atlanta , GA 30329-4027 USA 800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) , TTY: 888- ...

  10. First record of Loricifera from the Iberian Peninsula, with the description of Rugiloricus manuelae sp. nov., (Loricifera, Pliciloricidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pardos, Fernando; Kristensen, Reinhardt Møbjerg

    2013-12-01

    Sediment samples were taken along the Cantabric platform (Northern Spain) from 200 to 600 meters depth in October 1990. Forty specimens of loriciferans were sorted out of the samples, of which 38 specimens belong to a new species of Rugiloricus. The new species, R. manuelae sp. nov., was investigated with both light (DIC) and electron microscopy (SEM). Complete descriptions of both adult and larval stages are provided, including mapping of the introvert scalids for both stages. Information from a molting stage with an adult male inside confirms conspecificity of larvae and adults. The presence of a highly reduced postlarval stage leaded to the suggestion of a new modified life cycle for the family Pliciloricidae.

  11. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Sonja A; Watson, Amelia K; Swerdlow, David L

    2016-06-01

    Since the identification of the first patients with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012, over 1,600 cases have been reported as of February 2016. Most cases have occurred in Saudi Arabia or in other countries on or near the Arabian Peninsula, but travel-associated cases have also been seen in countries outside the Arabian Peninsula. MERS-CoV causes a severe respiratory illness in many patients, with a case fatality rate as high as 40%, although when contacts are investigated, a significant proportion of patients are asymptomatic or only have mild symptoms. At this time, no vaccines or treatments are available. Epidemiological and other data suggest that the source of most primary cases is exposure to camels. Person-to-person transmission occurs in household and health care settings, although sustained and efficient person-to-person transmission has not been observed. Strict adherence to infection control recommendations has been associated with control of previous outbreaks. Vigilance is needed because genomic changes in MERS-CoV could result in increased transmissibility, similar to what was seen in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV). PMID:27337460

  12. Robust k-mer frequency estimation using gapped k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Ghandi, Mahmoud; Mohammad-Noori, Morteza

    2013-01-01

    Oligomers of fixed length, k, commonly known as k-mers, are often used as fundamental elements in the description of DNA sequence features of diverse biological function, or as intermediate elements in the constuction of more complex descriptors of sequence features such as position weight matrices. k-mers are very useful as general sequence features because they constitute a complete and unbiased feature set, and do not require parameterization based on incomplete knowledge of biological mechanisms. However, a fundamental limitation in the use of k-mers as sequence features is that as k is increased, larger spatial correlations in DNA sequence elements can be described, but the frequency of observing any specific k-mer becomes very small, and rapidly approaches a sparse matrix of binary counts. Thus any statistical learning approach using k-mers will be susceptible to noisy estimation of k-mer frequencies once k becomes large. Because all molecular DNA interactions have limited spatial extent, gapped k-mers often carry the relevant biological signal. Here we use gapped k-mer counts to more robustly estimate the ungapped k-mer frequencies, by deriving an equation for the minimum norm estimate of k-mer frequencies given an observed set of gapped k-mer frequencies. We demonstrate that this approach provides a more accurate estimate of the k-mer frequencies in real biological sequences using a sample of CTCF binding sites in the human genome. PMID:23861010

  13. Exploring Gusev with MER A

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grin, E. A.; Cabrol, N. A.; Des Marais, D.; Farmer, J.; Greeley, R.; Carr, M.; Kramer, M.; Moore, J.; Sutter, B.; Fike, D.; Kuzmin, R.; Grant, F.; Barlow, N.; Newsom, H.; Tanaka, K.; Urquhart, M.; de Goursac, O.; Grisby, B.

    2002-12-01

    Gusev will be an outstanding candidate to achieve the 2003 MER mission goals. The crater has collected sediments from a diversity of parent rocks in the vast Maadim Vallis watershed over a period of three billion years. Because of the interaction between Gusev and Maadim, it has been proposed that a significant volume of the sedimentary material in the crater is of aqueous origin. Mars Odyssey has shown that the hydrogen abundance in the Gusev region is higher than average at corresponding latitudes. This observation could be consistent with a past long lived aqueous activity. The presence of aqueous material is central to the MER mission because it can provide clues about the past water history, climate changes, and the potential habitability of Mars. However, while Gusev is recognized as a primary site because of its past fluvio lacustrine activity, the geological diversity and history of its immediate surroundings makes it exceptional and provides the foundation for an exciting exploration leading to key discoveries. In addition to aqueous, many other processes can have contributed to the material in the crater basin: volcanic, Apollinaris patera is only 200 km away, aeolian, glacial, and global airfall processes. How to identify the signature of each process? What was their succession in time? Do we see the evolution from perennial to more episodic lakes? Do we see interaction between volcanic, glacial, aeolian and lacustrine processes? What was the recurrence of dry episodes? What type of measurements can provide a definitive answer for each of these questions in the 600 m traverse range that the rover will accomplish? What diversity can we also expect in this range? Finally, the uniqueness and potential of Gusev does not reside only in this exceptional diversity. As there is evidence for long lived lake episodes, Gusev also offers the unique possibility to study for the first time the results of the in situ formation of aqueous sediments and minerals in their

  14. Travelers' Health: MERS in the Arabian Peninsula

    MedlinePlus

    ... Zika risk at high elevations Find a Clinic Yellow Fever Vaccinations Clinics FAQ Disease Directory Resources Resources for ... ... found in people. Symptoms of MERS include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. CDC is working ...

  15. Structural basis for the neutralization of MERS-CoV by a human monoclonal antibody MERS-27

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaojuan; Zhang, Senyan; Jiang, Liwei; Cui, Ye; Li, Dongxia; Wang, Dongli; Wang, Nianshuang; Fu, Lili; Shi, Xuanlin; Li, Ziqiang; Zhang, Linqi; Wang, Xinquan

    2015-01-01

    The recently reported Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes severe respiratory illness in humans with an approximately 30% mortality rate. The envelope spike glycoprotein on the surface of MERS-CoV mediates receptor binding, membrane fusion, and viral entry. We previously reported two human monoclonal antibodies that target the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the spike and exhibit strong neutralization activity against live and pesudotyped MERS-CoV infection. Here we determined the crystal structure of MERS-CoV RBD bound to the Fab fragment of MERS-27 antibody at 3.20 Å resolution. The MERS-27 epitope in the RBD overlaps with the binding site of the MERS-CoV receptor DPP4. Further biochemical, viral entry, and neutralization analyses identified two critical residues in the RBD for both MERS-27 recognition and DPP4 binding. One of the residues, Trp535, was found to function as an anchor residue at the binding interface with MERS-27. Upon receptor binding, Trp535 interacts with the N-linked carbohydrate moiety of DPP4. Thus, MERS-27 inhibits MERS-CoV infection by directly blocking both protein-protein and protein-carbohydrate interactions between MERS-CoV RBD and DPP4. These results shed light on the molecular basis of MERS-27 neutralization and will assist in the optimization of MERS-27 as a tool to combat MERS-CoV infection. PMID:26281793

  16. Targeting Axl and Mer kinases in cancer.

    PubMed

    Verma, Anupam; Warner, Steven L; Vankayalapati, Hariprasad; Bearss, David J; Sharma, Sunil

    2011-10-01

    Receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK) are cell-surface transmembrane receptors that contain regulated kinase activity within their cytoplasmic domain and play an important role in signal transduction in both normal and malignant cells. The mammalian TAM RTK family includes 3 closely related members: Tyro-3, Axl, and Mer. Overexpression or ectopic expression of the TAM receptors has been detected in a wide array of human cancers. Growth arrest-specific gene 6 has been identified as the major ligand for these TAM RTKs, and its binding to the receptors has been shown to promote proliferation and survival of cancer cells in vitro. Abnormal expression and activation of Axl or Mer can provide a survival advantage for certain cancer cells. Inhibition of Axl and Mer may enhance the sensitivity of cancer cells to cytotoxic agents and would potentially be a therapeutic strategy to target cancer cells. This review elucidates the role of Axl and Mer in normal cellular function and their role in oncogenesis. In addition, we review the potential to inhibit these RTKs for the development of therapeutic targets in treatment of cancer. PMID:21933973

  17. Potential MER Landing Site in Melas Chasma

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weitz, C. M.; Parker, Timothy J.; Anderson, F. Scott

    2001-01-01

    We have selected one area in Valles Marineris as a potential landing site for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission. After 30 years of analyses, the formation of the Valles Marineris system of troughs and its associated deposits still remains an enigma. Understanding all aspects of the Valles Marineris would significantly contribute to deciphering the internal and external history of Mars. A landing site within Melas Chasma could provide insight into both the formation of Valles Marineris and the composition and origin of the interior layered deposits (ILDs). The ILDs have been proposed as: (1) sedimentary deposits formed in lakes mass wasted material from the walls; (3) remnants of the wall rock; (4) carbonate deposits; (5) aeolian deposits; and (6) volcanic. More recently, Malin and Edgett suggest that the fine-scale, rhythmic layering seen in the interior deposits, as well as other layered deposits in craters, supports a sedimentary origin. Because an understanding of the formation of Valles Marineris and its interior deposits is so important to deciphering the history of Mars, we have proposed a landing site for the MER mission on an exposure of interior deposits in western Melas Chasma. Either MER-A and MER-B could land at this same location.

  18. The MER/CIP Portal for Ground Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chan, Louise; Desai, Sanjay; DOrtenzio, Matthew; Filman, Robtert E.; Heher, Dennis M.; Hubbard, Kim; Johan, Sandra; Keely, Leslie; Magapu, Vish; Mak, Ronald

    2003-01-01

    We developed the Mars Exploration Rover/Collaborative Information Portal (MER/CIP) to facilitate MER operations. MER/CIP provides a centralized, one-stop delivery platform integrating science and engineering data from several distributed heterogeneous data sources. Key issues for MER/CIP include: 1) Scheduling and schedule reminders; 2) Tracking the status of daily predicted outputs; 3) Finding and analyzing data products; 4) Collaboration; 5) Announcements; 6) Personalization.

  19. Human Centered Design and Development for NASA's MerBoard

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Trimble, Jay

    2003-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation provides an overview of the design and development process for NASA's MerBoard. These devices are large interactive display screens which can be shown on the user's computer, which will allow scientists in many locations to interpret and evaluate mission data in real-time. These tools are scheduled to be used during the 2003 Mars Exploration Rover (MER) expeditions. Topics covered include: mission overview, Mer Human Centered Computers, FIDO 2001 observations and MerBoard prototypes.

  20. Animal models for SARS and MERS coronaviruses

    PubMed Central

    Gretebeck, Lisa M; Subbarao, Kanta

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), two strains of animal coronaviruses that crossed the species barrier to infect and cause severe respiratory infections in humans within the last 12 years, have taught us that coronaviruses represent a global threat that does not recognize international borders. We can expect to see other novel coronaviruses emerge in the future. An ideal animal model should reflect the clinical signs, viral replication and pathology seen in humans. In this review, we present factors to consider in establishing an animal model for the study of novel coronaviruses and compare the different animal models that have been employed to study SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. PMID:26184451

  1. Two Years Onboard the MER Opportunity Rover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estlin, Tara; Anderson, Robert C.; Bornstein, Benjamin; Burl, Michael; Castano, Rebecca; Gaines, Daniel; Judd, Michele; Thompson, David R.

    2012-01-01

    The Autonomous Exploration for Gathering Increased Science (AEGIS) system provides automated data collection for planetary rovers. AEGIS is currently being used onboard the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission's Opportunity to provide autonomous targeting of the MER Panoramic camera. Prior to AEGIS, targeted data was collected in a manual fashion where targets were manually identified in images transmitted to Earth and the rover had to remain in the same location for one to several communication cycles. AEGIS enables targeted data to be rapidly acquired with no delays for ground communication. Targets are selected by AEGIS through the use of onboard data analysis techniques that are guided by scientist-specified objectives. This paper provides an overview of the how AEGIS has been used on the Opportunity rover, focusing on usage that occurred during a 21 kilometer historic trek to the Mars Endeavour crater.

  2. Barrier properties of k-mer packings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebovka, N.; Khrapatiy, S.; Vygornitskyi; Pivovarova, N.

    2014-08-01

    This work discusses numerical studies of the barrier properties of k-mer packings by the Monte Carlo method. The studied variants of regular and non-regular arrangements on a square lattice included models of random sequential adsorption (RSA) and random deposition (RD). The discrete problem of diffusion through the bonds of a square lattice was considered. The k-mers were perfectly oriented perpendicular to the diffusion direction and blocked certain fraction of bonds fb against diffusion. The barrier efficiency was estimated by calculation of the ratio D/Do where D is diffusion coefficient in direction perpendicular to the orientation of k-mers and Do is the same value for diffusion on the square lattice without blocked bonds, i.e., at fb=0. The value of k varied from 1 to 512 and different lattice sizes up to L=8192 lattice units were used. For dense packings (p=1), the obtained D/Do versus fb dependences deviated from the theoretical prediction of effective medium (EM) theory and deviation was the most obvious for the regular non-staggered arrangement. For loose RSA and RD packings, the percolation like-behavior of D/Do with threshold at fb=p∞ was observed and the data evidenced that their barrier properties at large values of k may be more effective than those of some dense packings. Such anomalous behavior can reflect the details of k-mer spatial organization (aggregation) and structure of pores in RD and RSA packings. The contradictions between simulation data and predictions of EM theory were also discussed.

  3. Automated Targeting for the MER Rovers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Estlin, Tara; Castano, Rebecca; Anderson, Robert C.; Bornstein, Benjamin; Gaines, Daniel; de Granville, Charles; Thompson, David; Burl, Michael; Chien, Steve; Judd, Michele

    2009-01-01

    The Autonomous Exploration for Gathering Increased Science System (AEGIS) will soon provide automated targeting for remote sensing instruments on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission, which currently which currently has two rovers exploring the surface of Mars. Currently, targets for rover remote-sensing instruments, especially narrow field-of-view instruments (such as the MER Mini- TES spectrometer or the 2011 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Mission ChemCam Spectrometer), must be selected manually based on imagery already on the ground with the operations team. AEGIS enables the rover flight software to analyze imagery onboard in order to autonomously select and sequence targeted remote-sensing observations in an opportunistic fashion. In this paper, we first provide some background information on the larger autonomous science framework in which AEGIS was developed. We then describe how AEGIS was specifically developed and tested on the JPL FIDO rover. Finally we discuss how AEGIS will be uploaded and used on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission in early 2009.

  4. Managing PV Power on Mars - MER Rovers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stella, Paul M.; Chin, Keith; Wood, Eric; Herman, Jennifer; Ewell, Richard

    2009-01-01

    The MER Rovers have recently completed over 5 years of operation! This is a remarkable demonstration of the capabilities of PV power on the Martian surface. The extended mission required the development of an efficient process to predict the power available to the rovers on a day-to-day basis. The performance of the MER solar arrays is quite unlike that of any other Space array and perhaps more akin to Terrestrial PV operation, although even severe by that comparison. The impact of unpredictable factors, such as atmospheric conditions and dust accumulation (and removal) on the panels limits the accurate prediction of array power to short time spans. Based on the above, it is clear that long term power predictions are not sufficiently accurate to allow for detailed long term planning. Instead, the power assessment is essentially a daily activity, effectively resetting the boundary points for the overall predictive power model. A typical analysis begins with the importing of the telemetry from each rover's previous day's power subsystem activities. This includes the array power generated, battery state-of-charge, rover power loads, and rover orientation, all as functions of time. The predicted performance for that day is compared to the actual performance to identify the extent of any differences. The model is then corrected for these changes. Details of JPL's MER power analysis procedure are presented, including the description of steps needed to provide the final prediction for the mission planners. A dust cleaning event of the solar array is also highlighted to illustrate the impact of Martian weather on solar array performance

  5. MERS coronavirus: data gaps for laboratory preparedness.

    PubMed

    de Sousa, Rita; Reusken, Chantal; Koopmans, Marion

    2014-01-01

    Since the emergence of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012, many questions remain on modes of transmission and sources of virus. In outbreak situations, especially with emerging organisms causing severe human disease, it is important to understand the full spectrum of disease, and shedding kinetics in relation to infectivity and the ability to transmit the microorganism. Laboratory response capacity during the early stages of an outbreak focuses on development of virological and immunological methods for patient diagnosis, for contact tracing, and for epidemiological studies into sources, modes of transmission, identification of risk groups, and animal reservoirs. However, optimal use of this core public health laboratory capacity requires a fundamental understanding of kinetics of viral shedding and antibody response, of assay validation and of interpretation of test outcomes. We reviewed available data from MERS-CoV case reports, and compared this with data on kinetics of shedding and immune response from published literature on other human coronaviruses (hCoVs). We identify and discuss important data gaps, and biases that limit the laboratory preparedness to this novel disease. Public health management will benefit from standardised reporting of methods used, details of test outcomes by sample type, sampling date, in relation to symptoms and risk factors, along with the currently reported demographic, clinical and epidemiological findings. PMID:24286807

  6. Science Activity Planner for the MER Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Norris, Jeffrey S.; Crockett, Thomas M.; Fox, Jason M.; Joswig, Joseph C.; Powell, Mark W.; Shams, Khawaja S.; Torres, Recaredo J.; Wallick, Michael N.; Mittman, David S.

    2008-01-01

    The Maestro Science Activity Planner is a computer program that assists human users in planning operations of the Mars Explorer Rover (MER) mission and visualizing scientific data returned from the MER rovers. Relative to its predecessors, this program is more powerful and easier to use. This program is built on the Java Eclipse open-source platform around a Web-browser-based user-interface paradigm to provide an intuitive user interface to Mars rovers and landers. This program affords a combination of advanced display and simulation capabilities. For example, a map view of terrain can be generated from images acquired by the High Resolution Imaging Science Explorer instrument aboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft and overlaid with images from a navigation camera (more precisely, a stereoscopic pair of cameras) aboard a rover, and an interactive, annotated rover traverse path can be incorporated into the overlay. It is also possible to construct an overhead perspective mosaic image of terrain from navigation-camera images. This program can be adapted to similar use on other outer-space missions and is potentially adaptable to numerous terrestrial applications involving analysis of data, operations of robots, and planning of such operations for acquisition of scientific data.

  7. NT-38MerTK AS A TARGET IN GLIOBLASTOMA

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jing; Huey, Lauren; Bash, Ryan E.; Cohen, Stephanie M.; Ewend, Matthew G.; Wang, Xiaodong; Graham, Douglas K.; Frye, Stephen V.; Earp, H. Shelton; Miller, C. Ryan

    2014-01-01

    Glioma-associated macrophages and microglia (GIM) are infiltrating immune cells that modulate the glioblastoma (GBM) micro-environment. Pharmacological targeting of GIM represents a promising therapeutic strategy. MerTK receptor tyrosine kinase triggers macrophage ingestion of apoptotic material and polarizes macrophages to an M2-like, immunosuppressive phenotype that promotes tumor growth. In addition, aberrant MerTK expression in GBM tumor cells can provide pro-survival, pro-invasion and chemo-resistance signals. We examined MerTK expression by double immunofluorescence (IF) in 40 human GBM. Both GFAP+ tumor cells and CD68+ GIM expressed MerTK. Quantification in 12 matched pairs of newly-diagnosed and recurrent GBM showed a 5.5-fold increase in MerTK/CD68+ macrophages (p = 0.002), but no consistent changes in MerTK/GFAP+ tumor cells upon recurrence. Next, we examined the efficacy of a novel UNC-developed small molecule MerTK inhibitor (MerTKI) in a genetically engineered orthotopic allograft model of GBM (TRP). GBM were established for 7 days upon stereotactic injection of luciferase-expressing TRP cells into syngeneic, immune-competent mice. Mice (N = 10-12/group) were then randomized to receive no treatment, daily MerTKI (65mg/kg p.o.), or MerTKI plus fractionated radiation (XRT, 5 Gy q.o.d x3). Median survival was 24, 22, and 41.5 days, respectively (p = 0.003), while historical survival of TRP allograft mice treated with XRT alone was 30 days. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI) showed a significant growth delay in MerTKI + XRT-treated mice (doubling time 14 versus 4-4.5 days, p < 0.0001). Two mice remain alive after 50 days of combination treatment and tumor growth remains stable with 90-99% reduction in pre-treatment BLI. Post-mortem histology and IF are pending. These results suggest that both human GBM tumor cells and GIM express MerTK and that MerTK+ GIM may increase upon disease recurrence. MerTK inhibition in an immune-competent pre-clinical model may

  8. KAnalyze: a fast versatile pipelined K-mer toolkit

    PubMed Central

    Audano, Peter; Vannberg, Fredrik

    2014-01-01

    Motivation: Converting nucleotide sequences into short overlapping fragments of uniform length, k-mers, is a common step in many bioinformatics applications. While existing software packages count k-mers, few are optimized for speed, offer an application programming interface (API), a graphical interface or contain features that make it extensible and maintainable. We designed KAnalyze to compete with the fastest k-mer counters, to produce reliable output and to support future development efforts through well-architected, documented and testable code. Currently, KAnalyze can output k-mer counts in a sorted tab-delimited file or stream k-mers as they are read. KAnalyze can process large datasets with 2 GB of memory. This project is implemented in Java 7, and the command line interface (CLI) is designed to integrate into pipelines written in any language. Results: As a k-mer counter, KAnalyze outperforms Jellyfish, DSK and a pipeline built on Perl and Linux utilities. Through extensive unit and system testing, we have verified that KAnalyze produces the correct k-mer counts over multiple datasets and k-mer sizes. Availability and implementation: KAnalyze is available on SourceForge: https://sourceforge.net/projects/kanalyze/ Contact: fredrik.vannberg@biology.gatech.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:24642064

  9. Genomic DNA k-mer Spectra: Models and Modalities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chor, Benny; Horn, David; Goldman, Nick; Levy, Yaron; Massingham, Tim

    Background: The empirical frequencies of DNA k-mers in whole genome sequences provide an interesting perspective on genomic complexity, and the availability of large segments of genomic sequence from many organisms means that analysis of k-mers with non-trivial lengths is now possible.

  10. Engineering MerR for Sequestration and MerA for Reduction of Toxic Metals and Radionuclides

    SciTech Connect

    Anne O. Summers

    2008-12-15

    The objectives of this project were (1) to alter a metalloregulatory protein (MerR) so that it would bind other toxic metals or radionuclides with similar affinity so that the engineered protein itself and/or bacteria expressing it could be deployed in the environment to specifically sequester such metals and (2) to alter the mercuric reductase, MerA, to reduce radionuclides and render them less mobile. Both projects had a basic science component. In the first case, such information about MerR illuminates how proteins discriminate very similar metals/elements. In the second case, information about MerA reveals the criteria for transmission of reducing equivalents from NADPH to redox-active metals. The work involved genetic engineering of all or parts of both proteins and examination of their resultant properties both in vivo and in vitro, the latter with biochemical and biophysical tools including equilibrium and non-equilibrium dialysis, XAFS, NMR, x-ray crystallography, and titration calorimetry. We defined the basis for metal specificity in MerR, devised a bacterial strain that sequesters Hg while growing, characterized gold reduction by MerA and the role of the metallochaperone domain of MerA, and determined the 3-D structure of MerB, the organomercurial lyase.

  11. The Ames MER Microscopic Imager Toolkit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sargent, Randy; Deans, Matthew; Kunz, Clayton; Sims, Michael; Herkenhoff, Ken

    2005-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, have spent several successful months on Mars, returning gigabytes of images and spectral data to scientists on Earth. One of the instruments on the MER rovers, the Athena Microscopic Imager (MI), is a fixed focus, megapixel camera providing a plus or minus mm depth of field and a 3lx31mm field of view at a working distance of 63 mm from the lens to the object being imaged. In order to maximize the science return from this instrument, we developed the Ames MI Toolkit and supported its use during the primary mission. The MI Toolkit is a set of programs that operate on collections of MI images, with the goal of making the data more understandable to the scientists on the ground. Because of the limited depth of field of the camera, and the often highly variable topography of the terrain being imaged, MI images of a given rock are often taken as a stack, with the Instrument Deployment Device (IDD) moving along a computed normal vector, pausing every few millimeters for the MI to acquire an image. The MI Toolkit provides image registration and focal section merging, which combine these images to form a single, maximally in-focus image, while compensating for changes in lighting as well as parallax due to the motion of the camera. The MI Toolkit also provides a 3-D reconstruction of the surface being imaged using stereo and can embed 2-D MI images as texture maps into 3-D meshes produced by other imagers on board the rover to provide context. The 2-D images and 3-D meshes output from the Toolkit are easily viewed by scientists using other mission tools, such as Viz or the MI Browser. This paper describes the MI Toolkit in detail, as well as our experience using it with scientists at JPL during the primary MER mission.

  12. The Ames MER microscopic imager toolkit

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sargent, R.; Deans, Matthew; Kunz, C.; Sims, M.; Herkenhoff, K.

    2005-01-01

    12The Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, have spent several successful months on Mars, returning gigabytes of images and spectral data to scientists on Earth. One of the instruments on the MER rovers, the Athena Microscopic Imager (MI), is a fixed focus, megapixel camera providing a ??3mm depth of field and a 31??31mm field of view at a working distance of 63 mm from the lens to the object being imaged. In order to maximize the science return from this instrument, we developed the Ames MI Toolkit and supported its use during the primary mission. The MI Toolkit is a set of programs that operate on collections of MI images, with the goal of making the data more understandable to the scientists on the ground. Because of the limited depth of field of the camera, and the often highly variable topography of the terrain being imaged, MI images of a given rock are often taken as a stack, with the Instrument Deployment Device (IDD) moving along a computed normal vector, pausing every few millimeters for the MI to acquire an image. The MI Toolkit provides image registration and focal section merging, which combine these images to form a single, maximally in-focus image, while compensating for changes in lighting as well as parallax due to the motion of the camera. The MI Toolkit also provides a 3-D reconstruction of the surface being imaged using stereo and can embed 2-D MI images as texture maps into 3-D meshes produced by other imagers on board the rover to provide context. The 2-D images and 3-D meshes output from the Toolkit are easily viewed by scientists using other mission tools, such as Viz or the MI Browser.This paper describes the MI Toolkit in detail, as well as our experience using it with scientists at JPL during the primary MER mission. ?? 2005 IEEE.

  13. mer [Römer, Roemer], Ole [Olaf] Christensen (1644-1710)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Born in Aarhus, Denmark, studied at the University of Copenhagen under Thomas and Erasmus Bartholin, who gave him TYCHO BRAHE's manuscripts to edit and his own daughter to wed. Rømer accompanied Bartholin and JEAN PICARD to Hven to measure the position of Tycho's observatory, the better to reduce Tycho's observations. He went on to the Paris Observatory where he made and used instruments for the ...

  14. Recombination spot identification Based on gapped k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Rong; Xu, Yong; Liu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Recombination is crucial for biological evolution, which provides many new combinations of genetic diversity. Accurate identification of recombination spots is useful for DNA function study. To improve the prediction accuracy, researchers have proposed several computational methods for recombination spot identification. The k-mer feature is one of the most useful features for modeling the properties and function of DNA sequences. However, it suffers from the inherent limitation. If the value of word length k is large, the occurrences of k-mers are closed to a binary variable, with a few k-mers present once and most k-mers are absent. This usually causes the sparse problem and reduces the classification accuracy. To solve this problem, we add gaps into k-mer and introduce a new feature called gapped k-mer (GKM) for identification of recombination spots. By using this feature, we present a new predictor called SVM-GKM, which combines the gapped k-mers and Support Vector Machine (SVM) for recombination spot identification. Experimental results on a widely used benchmark dataset show that SVM-GKM outperforms other highly related predictors. Therefore, SVM-GKM would be a powerful predictor for computational genomics. PMID:27030570

  15. Recombination spot identification Based on gapped k-mers.

    PubMed

    Wang, Rong; Xu, Yong; Liu, Bin

    2016-01-01

    Recombination is crucial for biological evolution, which provides many new combinations of genetic diversity. Accurate identification of recombination spots is useful for DNA function study. To improve the prediction accuracy, researchers have proposed several computational methods for recombination spot identification. The k-mer feature is one of the most useful features for modeling the properties and function of DNA sequences. However, it suffers from the inherent limitation. If the value of word length k is large, the occurrences of k-mers are closed to a binary variable, with a few k-mers present once and most k-mers are absent. This usually causes the sparse problem and reduces the classification accuracy. To solve this problem, we add gaps into k-mer and introduce a new feature called gapped k-mer (GKM) for identification of recombination spots. By using this feature, we present a new predictor called SVM-GKM, which combines the gapped k-mers and Support Vector Machine (SVM) for recombination spot identification. Experimental results on a widely used benchmark dataset show that SVM-GKM outperforms other highly related predictors. Therefore, SVM-GKM would be a powerful predictor for computational genomics. PMID:27030570

  16. MGS and Odyssey - relay satellites for the MER mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Esposito, Pasquale B.; Bhat, R.; Demeak, S.; Ardalan, S.; Breeden, J.; Helfrich, C.; Jefferson, D.; Stauch, J.

    2004-01-01

    Both Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) and Odyssey are currently in low altitude, nearly circular and highly inclined orbits about Mars. Thus, they are available adn compartible to serve as relay satellites for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) mission. Consequently, the MER project developed requirements for MGS to be overhead for MER-A (Spirit) at Gusev crater, at maximum elevation, mudway between lander separation and initial touchdown; in time, this was specified as 01/04/04. 04:24:55 UTC/SCET with a 30 sec tolerance.

  17. Monoclonal Antibody Shows Promise as Potential Therapeutic for MERS | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    A monoclonal antibody has proven effective in preventing Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in lab animals, suggesting further development as a potential intervention for the deadly disease in humans, according to new research. MERS is a newly emerged coronavirus first detected in humans in 2012. Most cases have occurred in the Middle East, but the disease has appeared elsewhere. In all, MERS has infected more than 1,700 individuals and killed more than 600, according to the World Health Organization. No vaccines or antiviral therapies currently exist. Several candidate vaccines are being developed, and some have been tested in animal models, a prerequisite to human clinical trials.

  18. Translating MAPGEN to ASPEN for MER

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rabideau, Gregg R.; Knight, Russell L.; Lenda, Matthew; Maldague, Pierre F.

    2013-01-01

    This software translates MAPGEN (Europa and APGEN) domains to ASPEN, and the resulting domain can be used to perform planning for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER). In other words, this is a conversion of two distinct planning languages (both declarative and procedural) to a third (declarative) planning language in order to solve the problem of faithful translation from mixed-domain representations into the ASPEN Modeling Language. The MAPGEN planning system is an example of a hybrid procedural/declarative system where the advantages of each are leveraged to produce an effective planner/scheduler for MER tactical planning. The adaptation of the planning system (ASPEN) was investigated, and, with some translation, much of the procedural knowledge encoding is amenable to declarative knowledge encoding. The approach was to compose translators from the core languages used for adapting MAGPEN, which consists of Europa and APGEN. Europa is a constraint- based planner/scheduler where domains are encoded using a declarative model. APGEN is also constraint-based, in that it tracks constraints on resources and states and other variables. Domains are encoded in both constraints and code snippets that execute according to a forward sweep through the plan. Europa and APGEN communicate to each other using proxy activities in APGEN that represent constraints and/or tokens in Europa. The composition of a translator from Europa to ASPEN was fairly straightforward, as ASPEN is also a declarative planning system, and the specific uses of Europa for the MER domain matched ASPEN s native encoding fairly closely. On the other hand, translating from APGEN to ASPEN was considerably more involved. On the surface, the types of activities and resources one encodes in APGEN appear to match oneto- one to the activities, state variables, and resources in ASPEN. But, when looking into the definitions of how resources are profiled and activities are expanded, one sees code snippets that access

  19. PERFORMANCE CHARACTERISTICS OF 65-MER OLIGONUCLEOTIDE MICROARRAYS

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Myoyong; Xiang, Charlie C.; Trent, Jeffrey M.; Bittner, Michael L.

    2009-01-01

    Microarray fabrication using pre-synthesized long oligonucleotide is becoming increasingly important, but a study of large-scale array productions is not published yet. We addressed the issue of fabricating oligonucleotide microarrays by spotting commercial, pre-synthesized 65-mers with 5′ amines representing 7500 murine genes. Amine-modified oligonucleotides were immobilized on glass slides having aldehyde groups via transient Schiff base formation followed by reduction to produce a covalent conjugate. When RNA derived from the same source was used for Cy3 and Cy5 labeling and hybridized to the same array, signal intensities spanning three orders of magnitude were observed, and the coefficient of variation between the two channels for all spots was 8–10%. To ascertain the reproducibility of ratio determination of these arrays, two triplicate hybridizations (with fluorochrome reversal) comparing RNAs from a fibroblast (NIH3T3) and a breast cancer (JC) cell line were carried out. The 95% confidence interval for all spots in the six hybridizations was 0.60 – 1.66. This level of reproducibility allows use of the full range of pattern finding and discriminant analysis typically applied to cDNA microarrays. Further comparative testing was carried out with oligonucleotide microarrays, cDNA microarrays and RT-PCR assays to examine the comparability of results across these different methodologies. PMID:17617369

  20. SARS and MERS: recent insights into emerging coronaviruses.

    PubMed

    de Wit, Emmie; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Falzarano, Darryl; Munster, Vincent J

    2016-08-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012 marked the second introduction of a highly pathogenic coronavirus into the human population in the twenty-first century. The continuing introductions of MERS-CoV from dromedary camels, the subsequent travel-related viral spread, the unprecedented nosocomial outbreaks and the high case-fatality rates highlight the need for prophylactic and therapeutic measures. Scientific advancements since the 2002-2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) pandemic allowed for rapid progress in our understanding of the epidemiology and pathogenesis of MERS-CoV and the development of therapeutics. In this Review, we detail our present understanding of the transmission and pathogenesis of SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, and discuss the current state of development of measures to combat emerging coronaviruses. PMID:27344959

  1. WATER ON MARS: EVIDENCE FROM MER MISSION RESULTS

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2006-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission landed two rovers on Mars, equipped with a highly-capable suite of science instruments. The Spirit rover landed on the inside Gusev Crater on January 5, 2004, and the Opportunity rover three weeks later on Meridiani Planum. This paper summarizes some of the findings from the MER rovers related to the NASA science strategy of investigating past and present water on Mars.

  2. Self-assembly of 33-mer gliadin peptide oligomers.

    PubMed

    Herrera, M G; Benedini, L A; Lonez, C; Schilardi, P L; Hellweg, T; Ruysschaert, J-M; Dodero, V I

    2015-11-28

    The 33-mer gliadin peptide, LQLQPF(PQPQLPY)3PQPQPF, is a highly immunogenic peptide involved in celiac disease and probably in other immunopathologies associated with gliadin. Herein, dynamic light scattering measurements showed that 33-mer, in the micromolar concentration range, forms polydisperse nano- and micrometer range particles in aqueous media. This behaviour is reminiscent of classical association of colloids and we hypothesized that the 33-mer peptide self-assembles into micelles that could be the precursors of 33-mer oligomers in water. Deposition of 33-mer peptide aqueous solution on bare mica generated nano- and microstructures with different morphologies as revealed by atomic force microscopy. At 6 μM, the 33-mer is organised in isolated and clusters of spherical nanostructures. In the 60 to 250 μM concentration range, the spherical oligomers associated mainly in linear and annular arrangements and structures adopting a "sheet" type morphology appeared. At higher concentrations (610 μM), mainly filaments and plaques immersed in a background of nanospherical structures were detected. The occurrence of different morphologies of oligomers and finally the filaments suggests that the unique specific geometry of the 33-mer oligomers has a crucial role in the subsequent condensation and organization of their fractal structures into the final filaments. The self-assembly process on mica is described qualitatively and quantitatively by a fractal diffusion limited aggregation (DLA) behaviour with the fractal dimension in the range of 1.62 ± 0.02 to 1.73 ± 0.03. Secondary structure evaluation of the oligomers by Attenuated Total Reflection FTIR spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) revealed the existence of a conformational equilibrium of self-assembled structures, from an extended conformation to a more folded parallel beta elongated structures. Altogether, these findings provide structural and morphological information about supramolecular organization of the 33-mer

  3. Role of MerH in mercury resistance in the archaeon Sulfolobus solfataricus

    PubMed Central

    Schelert, James; Rudrappa, Deepak; Johnson, Tyler

    2013-01-01

    Crenarchaeota include extremely thermoacidophilic organisms that thrive in geothermal environments dominated by sulfidic ores and heavy metals such as mercury. Mercuric ion, Hg(II), inactivates transcription in the crenarchaeote Sulfolobus solfataricus and simultaneously derepresses transcription of a resistance operon, merHAI, through interaction with the MerR transcription factor. While mercuric reductase (MerA) is required for metal resistance, the role of MerH, an adjacent small and predicted product of an ORF, has not been explored. Inactivation of MerH either by nonsense mutation or by in-frame deletion diminished Hg(II) resistance of mutant cells. Promoter mapping studies indicated that Hg(II) sensitivity of the merH nonsense mutant arose through transcriptional polarity, and its metal resistance was restored partially by single copy merH complementation. Since MerH was not required in vitro for MerA-catalysed Hg(II) reduction, MerH may play an alternative role in metal resistance. Inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry analysis of the MerH deletion strain following metal challenge indicated that there was prolonged retention of intracellular Hg(II). Finally, a reduced rate of mer operon induction in the merH deletion mutant suggested that the requirement for MerH could result from metal trafficking to the MerR transcription factor. PMID:23619003

  4. Evaluation of candidate vaccine approaches for MERS-CoV

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Wang, Lingshu; Shi, Wei; Joyce, M. Gordon; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Zhang, Yi; Leung, Kwanyee; Lees, Christopher R.; Zhou, Tongqing; Yassine, Hadi M.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; et al

    2015-07-28

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) as a cause of severe respiratory disease highlights the need for effective approaches to CoV vaccine development. Efforts focused solely on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the viral Spike (S) glycoprotein may not optimize neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses. Here we show that immunogens based on full-length S DNA and S1 subunit protein elicit robust serum-neutralizing activity against several MERS-CoV strains in mice and non-human primates. Serological analysis and isolation of murine monoclonal antibodies revealed that immunization elicits NAbs to RBD and, non-RBD portions of S1 and S2 subunit. Multiple neutralization mechanismsmore » were demonstrated by solving the atomic structure of a NAb-RBD complex, through sequencing of neutralization escape viruses and by constructing MERS-CoV S variants for serological assays. Immunization of rhesus macaques confers protection against MERS-CoV-induced radiographic pneumonia, as assessed using computerized tomography, supporting this strategy as a promising approach for MERS-CoV vaccine development.« less

  5. Evaluation of candidate vaccine approaches for MERS-CoV

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Lingshu; Shi, Wei; Joyce, M. Gordon; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Zhang, Yi; Leung, Kwanyee; Lees, Christopher R.; Zhou, Tongqing; Yassine, Hadi M.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; Yang, Zhi-yong; Chen, Xuejun; Becker, Michelle M.; Freeman, Megan; Vogel, Leatrice; Johnson, Joshua C.; Olinger, Gene; Todd, John P.; Bagci, Ulas; Solomon, Jeffrey; Mollura, Daniel J.; Hensley, Lisa; Jahrling, Peter; Denison, Mark R.; Rao, Srinivas S.; Subbarao, Kanta; Kwong, Peter D.; Mascola, John R.; Kong, Wing-Pui; Graham, Barney S.

    2015-07-28

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) as a cause of severe respiratory disease highlights the need for effective approaches to CoV vaccine development. Efforts focused solely on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the viral Spike (S) glycoprotein may not optimize neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses. Here we show that immunogens based on full-length S DNA and S1 subunit protein elicit robust serum-neutralizing activity against several MERS-CoV strains in mice and non-human primates. Serological analysis and isolation of murine monoclonal antibodies revealed that immunization elicits NAbs to RBD and, non-RBD portions of S1 and S2 subunit. Multiple neutralization mechanisms were demonstrated by solving the atomic structure of a NAb-RBD complex, through sequencing of neutralization escape viruses and by constructing MERS-CoV S variants for serological assays. Immunization of rhesus macaques confers protection against MERS-CoV-induced radiographic pneumonia, as assessed using computerized tomography, supporting this strategy as a promising approach for MERS-CoV vaccine development.

  6. Evaluation of candidate vaccine approaches for MERS-CoV

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lingshu; Shi, Wei; Joyce, M. Gordon; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Zhang, Yi; Leung, Kwanyee; Lees, Christopher R.; Zhou, Tongqing; Yassine, Hadi M.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; Yang, Zhi-yong; Chen, Xuejun; Becker, Michelle M.; Freeman, Megan; Vogel, Leatrice; Johnson, Joshua C.; Olinger, Gene; Todd, John P.; Bagci, Ulas; Solomon, Jeffrey; Mollura, Daniel J.; Hensley, Lisa; Jahrling, Peter; Denison, Mark R.; Rao, Srinivas S.; Subbarao, Kanta; Kwong, Peter D.; Mascola, John R.; Kong, Wing-Pui; Graham, Barney S.

    2015-01-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) as a cause of severe respiratory disease highlights the need for effective approaches to CoV vaccine development. Efforts focused solely on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the viral Spike (S) glycoprotein may not optimize neutralizing antibody (NAb) responses. Here we show that immunogens based on full-length S DNA and S1 subunit protein elicit robust serum-neutralizing activity against several MERS-CoV strains in mice and non-human primates. Serological analysis and isolation of murine monoclonal antibodies revealed that immunization elicits NAbs to RBD and, non-RBD portions of S1 and S2 subunit. Multiple neutralization mechanisms were demonstrated by solving the atomic structure of a NAb-RBD complex, through sequencing of neutralization escape viruses and by constructing MERS-CoV S variants for serological assays. Immunization of rhesus macaques confers protection against MERS-CoV-induced radiographic pneumonia, as assessed using computerized tomography, supporting this strategy as a promising approach for MERS-CoV vaccine development. PMID:26218507

  7. Systolic dysfunction in cardiac-specific ligand-inducible MerCreMer transgenic mice

    PubMed Central

    Hall, Michael E.; Smith, Grant; Hall, John E.

    2011-01-01

    The Cre-loxP system is a useful tool to study the physiological effects of gene knockout in the heart. One limitation with using this system in the heart is the toxic effect of chronic expression of the Cre recombinase. To circumvent this limitation, a widely used inducible cardiac-specific model, Myh6-MerCreMer (Cre), using tamoxifen (TAM) to activate Cre has been developed. The current study examined cardiac function in Cre-positive C57B/J6 mice exposed to one, three, or five daily doses of a 40 mg/kg TAM to induce Cre activity specifically in the heart. Echocardiography demonstrated no statistically significant differences in systolic function (SF) at baseline as assessed by fractional shortening. In mice exposed to five injections, a significant fall in all determinants of SF was observed 6 days after TAM was initiated. However, SF returned to baseline levels 10 days after TAM initiation although the hearts exhibited significant hypertrophy. Heart weight-to-tibia length ratios were 73 ± 3, 78.5 ± 6, and 87.6 ± 9 mg/cm for one, three, and five TAM injections, respectively. TAM had no effect on cardiac function or hypertrophy in Cre-negative mice. Cre-positive mice receiving five TAM injections had significant reductions in cardiac mitochondrial ATP and significant reductions in the expression of proteins important for the regulation of cardiac oxidative phosphorylation including peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ coactivator-1α and pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase-4. Thus inducible cardiac-specific activation of Cre recombinase caused a transient decline in SF that was dependent on the number of TAM doses and associated with significant hypertrophy and alterations in mitochondrial ATP and important proteins involved in the regulation of cardiac oxidative phosphorylation. PMID:21536850

  8. Model for the distributions of k -mers in DNA sequences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yaw-Hwang; Nyeo, Su-Long; Yeh, Chiung-Yuh

    2005-07-01

    The evolutionary features based on the distributions of k -mers in the DNA sequences of various organisms are studied. The organisms are classified into three groups based on their evolutionary periods: (a) E. coli and T. pallidum (b) yeast, zebrafish, A. thaliana, and fruit fly, (c) mouse, chicken, and human. The distributions of 6-mers of these three groups are shown to be, respectively, (a) unimodal, (b) unimodal with peaks generally shifted to smaller frequencies of occurrence, (c) bimodal. To describe the bimodal feature of the k -mer distributions of group (c), a model based on the cytosine-guanine “ CG ” content of the DNA sequences is introduced and shown to provide reasonably good agreements.

  9. A stable mercury-containing complex of the organomercurial lyase MerB: catalysis, product release, and direct transfer to MerA.

    PubMed

    Benison, Gregory C; Di Lello, Paola; Shokes, Jacob E; Cosper, Nathaniel J; Scott, Robert A; Legault, Pascale; Omichinski, James G

    2004-07-01

    Bacteria isolated from organic mercury-contaminated sites have developed a system of two enzymes that allows them to efficiently convert both ionic and organic mercury compounds to the less toxic elemental mercury. Both enzymes are encoded on the mer operon and require sulfhydryl-bound substrates. The first enzyme is an organomercurial lyase (MerB), and the second enzyme is a mercuric ion reductase (MerA). MerB catalyzes the protonolysis of the carbon-mercury bond, resulting in the formation of a reduced carbon compound and inorganic ionic mercury. Of several mercury-containing MerB complexes that we attempted to prepare, the most stable was a complex consisting of the organomercurial lyase (MerB), a mercuric ion, and a molecule of the MerB inhibitor dithiothreitol (DTT). Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and extended X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy of the MerB/Hg/DTT complex have shown that the ligands to the mercuric ion in the complex consist of both sulfurs from the DTT molecule and one cysteine ligand, C96, from the protein. The stability of the MerB/Hg/DTT complex, even in the presence of a large excess of competing cysteine, has been demonstrated by NMR and dialysis. We used an enzyme buffering test to determine that the MerB/Hg/DTT complex acts as a substrate for the mercuric reductase MerA. The observed MerA activity is higher than the expected activity assuming free diffusion of the mercuric ion from MerB to MerA. This suggests that the mercuric ion can be transferred between the two enzymes by a direct transfer mechanism. PMID:15222746

  10. The Ballerina Experiment on the Rømer Mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, Soren

    The Rømer mission has recently been approved as the next mission within the Danish Small Satellite Program. The scientific payload will consist of two separate experiments, the MONS and the Ballerina payloads. The primary objective of Ballerina is to provide accurate, real-time positions relayed to ground for ~ 70 Gamma Ray Bursts (GRBs) per year, and to study the temporal and spectral evolution of the early GRB X-ray afterglow. As an additional goal, Ballerina will detect and study bright X-ray transients, in particular X-ray novae and micro-quasar systems. R{\\o}mer is currently scheduled for launch in late 2003.

  11. Cassini, Rømer, and the velocity of light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bobis, Laurence; Lequeux, James

    2008-07-01

    The discovery of the finite nature of the velocity of light is usually attributed to Rømer. However, a text at the Paris Observatory confirms the minority opinion according to which Cassini was first to propose the ‘successive motion’ of light, while giving a rather correct order of magnitude for the duration of its propagation from the Sun to the Earth. We examine this question, and discuss why, in spite of the criticisms of Halley, Cassini abandoned this hypothesis while leaving Rømer free to publish it.

  12. Vaccines for the prevention against the threat of MERS-CoV.

    PubMed

    Du, Lanying; Tai, Wanbo; Zhou, Yusen; Jiang, Shibo

    2016-09-01

    First identified in 2012, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is listed as a new Category C Priority Pathogen. While the high mortality of MERS-CoV infection is further intensified by potential human-to-human transmissibility, no MERS vaccines are available for human use. This review explains immune responses resulting from MERS-CoV infection, describes MERS vaccine criteria, and presents available small animal models to evaluate the efficacy of MERS vaccines. Current advances in vaccine development are summarized, focusing on specific applications and limitations of each vaccine category. Taken together, this review provides valuable guidelines toward the development of an effective and safe MERS vaccine. This article is written for a Special Focus Issue of Expert Review of Vaccines on 'Vaccines for Biodefence'. PMID:26985862

  13. Planning Mars Memory: Learning from the MER Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Charlotte, Linde

    2004-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation discusses ways in which the lessons learned from a mission can be systematically remembered, retained, and applied by individuals and by an organization as a whole. The presentation cites lessons learned from the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Mission as examples.

  14. Characterization of MER Landing Sites Using MOC and MOLA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, F. S.; Parker, T. J.

    2002-01-01

    The MOC images for MER are compared with MOLA data to characterize and locate each image. MOLA profiles show that Hematite remains benign, Melas and Isidis are rougher, and Athabasca and Gusev have regions of significant small scale topography. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  15. ROLE OF NA+ IN TRANSPORT OF HG2+ AND INDUCTION OF THE TN21 "MER" OPERON

    EPA Science Inventory

    The effects of sodium ions on the uptake of Hg 2 + and induction of the TN21 mer operon were studied using E. coli HMS174 harboring the reporter plasmids pRB28 and pOS14. lasmid pRB28 carries merRT' and pOS14 carries merRTPC of the mer operon, both cloned upstream of a promoterle...

  16. MERS-CoV Antibodies in Humans, Africa, 2013-2014.

    PubMed

    Liljander, Anne; Meyer, Benjamin; Jores, Joerg; Müller, Marcel A; Lattwein, Erik; Njeru, Ian; Bett, Bernard; Drosten, Christian; Corman, Victor Max

    2016-06-01

    Dromedaries in Africa and elsewhere carry the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). To search for evidence of autochthonous MERS-CoV infection in humans, we tested archived serum from livestock handlers in Kenya for MERS-CoV antibodies. Serologic evidence of infection was confirmed for 2 persons sampled in 2013 and 2014. PMID:27071076

  17. Antenna Designs for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) Spacecraft, Lander, and Rover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vacchione, Joseph; Thelen, Michael; Brown, Paula; Huang, John; Kelly, Ken; Krishnan, Satish

    2001-01-01

    This presentation focuses on the design of antennas for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER). Specific topics covered include: MER spacecraft architecture, the evolution of an antenna system, MER cruise stage antennas, antenna stacks, the heat-shield/back shell antenna, and lander and rover antennas. Additionally, the mission's science objectives are reviewed.

  18. Development of human neutralizing monoclonal antibodies for prevention and therapy of MERS-CoV infections

    PubMed Central

    Ying, Tianlei; Li, Haoyang; Lu, Lu; Dimitrov, Dimiter S; Jiang, Shibo

    2014-01-01

    The recent Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak poses a serious threat to public health. Here, we summarize recent advances in identifying human neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against MERS-CoV, describe their mechanisms of action, and analyze their potential for treatment of MERS-CoV infections. PMID:25456101

  19. MERS-CoV Antibodies in Humans, Africa, 2013–2014

    PubMed Central

    Liljander, Anne; Meyer, Benjamin; Jores, Joerg; Müller, Marcel A.; Lattwein, Erik; Njeru, Ian; Bett, Bernard; Corman, Victor Max

    2016-01-01

    Dromedaries in Africa and elsewhere carry the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). To search for evidence of autochthonous MERS-CoV infection in humans, we tested archived serum from livestock handlers in Kenya for MERS-CoV antibodies. Serologic evidence of infection was confirmed for 2 persons sampled in 2013 and 2014. PMID:27071076

  20. Unraveling the drivers of MERS-CoV transmission.

    PubMed

    Cauchemez, Simon; Nouvellet, Pierre; Cori, Anne; Jombart, Thibaut; Garske, Tini; Clapham, Hannah; Moore, Sean; Mills, Harriet Linden; Salje, Henrik; Collins, Caitlin; Rodriquez-Barraquer, Isabel; Riley, Steven; Truelove, Shaun; Algarni, Homoud; Alhakeem, Rafat; AlHarbi, Khalid; Turkistani, Abdulhafiz; Aguas, Ricardo J; Cummings, Derek A T; Van Kerkhove, Maria D; Donnelly, Christl A; Lessler, Justin; Fraser, Christophe; Al-Barrak, Ali; Ferguson, Neil M

    2016-08-01

    With more than 1,700 laboratory-confirmed infections, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) remains a significant threat for public health. However, the lack of detailed data on modes of transmission from the animal reservoir and between humans means that the drivers of MERS-CoV epidemics remain poorly characterized. Here, we develop a statistical framework to provide a comprehensive analysis of the transmission patterns underlying the 681 MERS-CoV cases detected in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) between January 2013 and July 2014. We assess how infections from the animal reservoir, the different levels of mixing, and heterogeneities in transmission have contributed to the buildup of MERS-CoV epidemics in KSA. We estimate that 12% [95% credible interval (CI): 9%, 15%] of cases were infected from the reservoir, the rest via human-to-human transmission in clusters (60%; CI: 57%, 63%), within (23%; CI: 20%, 27%), or between (5%; CI: 2%, 8%) regions. The reproduction number at the start of a cluster was 0.45 (CI: 0.33, 0.58) on average, but with large SD (0.53; CI: 0.35, 0.78). It was >1 in 12% (CI: 6%, 18%) of clusters but fell by approximately one-half (47% CI: 34%, 63%) its original value after 10 cases on average. The ongoing exposure of humans to MERS-CoV from the reservoir is of major concern, given the continued risk of substantial outbreaks in health care systems. The approach we present allows the study of infectious disease transmission when data linking cases to each other remain limited and uncertain. PMID:27457935

  1. Unraveling the drivers of MERS-CoV transmission

    PubMed Central

    Cauchemez, Simon; Nouvellet, Pierre; Cori, Anne; Jombart, Thibaut; Clapham, Hannah; Moore, Sean; Mills, Harriet Linden; Salje, Henrik; Collins, Caitlin; Rodriquez-Barraquer, Isabel; Riley, Steven; Truelove, Shaun; Algarni, Homoud; Alhakeem, Rafat; AlHarbi, Khalid; Turkistani, Abdulhafiz; Aguas, Ricardo J.; Cummings, Derek A. T.; Van Kerkhove, Maria D.; Donnelly, Christl A.; Lessler, Justin; Fraser, Christophe; Al-Barrak, Ali; Ferguson, Neil M.

    2016-01-01

    With more than 1,700 laboratory-confirmed infections, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) remains a significant threat for public health. However, the lack of detailed data on modes of transmission from the animal reservoir and between humans means that the drivers of MERS-CoV epidemics remain poorly characterized. Here, we develop a statistical framework to provide a comprehensive analysis of the transmission patterns underlying the 681 MERS-CoV cases detected in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) between January 2013 and July 2014. We assess how infections from the animal reservoir, the different levels of mixing, and heterogeneities in transmission have contributed to the buildup of MERS-CoV epidemics in KSA. We estimate that 12% [95% credible interval (CI): 9%, 15%] of cases were infected from the reservoir, the rest via human-to-human transmission in clusters (60%; CI: 57%, 63%), within (23%; CI: 20%, 27%), or between (5%; CI: 2%, 8%) regions. The reproduction number at the start of a cluster was 0.45 (CI: 0.33, 0.58) on average, but with large SD (0.53; CI: 0.35, 0.78). It was >1 in 12% (CI: 6%, 18%) of clusters but fell by approximately one-half (47% CI: 34%, 63%) its original value after 10 cases on average. The ongoing exposure of humans to MERS-CoV from the reservoir is of major concern, given the continued risk of substantial outbreaks in health care systems. The approach we present allows the study of infectious disease transmission when data linking cases to each other remain limited and uncertain. PMID:27457935

  2. Demonstration of Mer-Cure Technology for Enhanced Mercury Control

    SciTech Connect

    John Marion; Dave O'Neill; Kevin Taugher; Shin Kang; Mark Johnson; Gerald Pargac; Jane Luedecke; Randy Gardiner; Mike Silvertooth; Jim Hicks; Carl Edberg; Ray Cournoyer; Stanley Bohdanowicz; Ken Peterson; Kurt Johnson; Steve Benson; Richard Schulz; Don McCollor; Mike Wuitshick

    2008-06-01

    Alstom Power Inc. has completed a DOE/NETL-sponsored program (under DOE Cooperative Agreement No. De-FC26-07NT42776) to demonstrate Mer-Cure{trademark}, one of Alstom's mercury control technologies for coal-fired boilers. The Mer-Cure{trademark}system utilizes a small amount of Mer-Clean{trademark} sorbent that is injected into the flue gas stream for oxidation and adsorption of gaseous mercury. Mer-Clean{trademark} sorbents are carbon-based and prepared with chemical additives that promote oxidation and capture of mercury. The Mer-Cure{trademark} system is unique in that the sorbent is injected into an environment where the mercury capture kinetics is accelerated. The full-scale demonstration program originally included test campaigns at two host sites: LCRA's 480-MW{sub e} Fayette Unit No.3 and Reliant Energy's 190-MW{sub e} Shawville Unit No.3. The only demonstration tests actually done were the short-term tests at LCRA due to budget constraints. This report gives a summary of the demonstration testing at Fayette Unit No.3. The goals for this Mercury Round 3 program, established by DOE/NETL under the original solicitation, were to reduce the uncontrolled mercury emissions by 90% at a cost significantly less than 50% of the previous target of $60,000/lb mercury removed. The results indicated that Mer-Cure{trademark} technology could achieve mercury removal of 90% based on uncontrolled stack emissions. The estimated costs for 90% mercury control, at a sorbent cost of $0.75 to $2.00/lb respectively, were $13,400 to $18,700/lb Hg removed. In summary, the results from demonstration testing show that the goals established by DOE/NETL were met during this test program. The goal of 90% mercury reduction was achieved. Estimated mercury removal costs were 69-78% lower than the benchmark of $60,000/lb mercury removed, significantly less than 50% of the baseline removal cost.

  3. Preventing cleavage of Mer promotes efferocytosis and suppresses acute lung injury in bleomycin treated mice

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Ye-Ji; Lee, Seung-Hae; Youn, Young-So; Choi, Ji-Yeon; Song, Keung-Sub; Cho, Min-Sun; Kang, Jihee Lee

    2012-08-15

    Mer receptor tyrosine kinase (Mer) regulates macrophage activation and promotes apoptotic cell clearance. Mer activation is regulated through proteolytic cleavage of the extracellular domain. To determine if membrane-bound Mer is cleaved during bleomycin-induced lung injury, and, if so, how preventing the cleavage of Mer enhances apoptotic cell uptake and down-regulates pulmonary immune responses. During bleomycin-induced acute lung injury in mice, membrane-bound Mer expression decreased, but production of soluble Mer and activity as well as expression of disintegrin and metalloproteinase 17 (ADAM17) were enhanced . Treatment with the ADAM inhibitor TAPI-0 restored Mer expression and diminished soluble Mer production. Furthermore, TAPI-0 increased Mer activation in alveolar macrophages and lung tissue resulting in enhanced apoptotic cell clearance in vivo and ex vivo by alveolar macrophages. Suppression of bleomycin-induced pro-inflammatory mediators, but enhancement of hepatocyte growth factor induction were seen after TAPI-0 treatment. Additional bleomycin-induced inflammatory responses reduced by TAPI-0 treatment included inflammatory cell recruitment into the lungs, levels of total protein and lactate dehydrogenase activity in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid, as well as caspase-3 and caspase-9 activity and alveolar epithelial cell apoptosis in lung tissue. Importantly, the effects of TAPI-0 on bleomycin-induced inflammation and apoptosis were reversed by coadministration of specific Mer-neutralizing antibodies. These findings suggest that restored membrane-bound Mer expression by TAPI-0 treatment may help resolve lung inflammation and apoptosis after bleomycin treatment. -- Highlights: ►Mer expression is restored by TAPI-0 treatment in bleomycin-stimulated lung. ►Mer signaling is enhanced by TAPI-0 treatment in bleomycin-stimulated lung. ►TAPI-0 enhances efferocytosis and promotes resolution of lung injury.

  4. These Are Not the K-mers You Are Looking For: Efficient Online K-mer Counting Using a Probabilistic Data Structure

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Qingpeng; Pell, Jason; Canino-Koning, Rosangela; Howe, Adina Chuang; Brown, C. Titus

    2014-01-01

    K-mer abundance analysis is widely used for many purposes in nucleotide sequence analysis, including data preprocessing for de novo assembly, repeat detection, and sequencing coverage estimation. We present the khmer software package for fast and memory efficient online counting of k-mers in sequencing data sets. Unlike previous methods based on data structures such as hash tables, suffix arrays, and trie structures, khmer relies entirely on a simple probabilistic data structure, a Count-Min Sketch. The Count-Min Sketch permits online updating and retrieval of k-mer counts in memory which is necessary to support online k-mer analysis algorithms. On sparse data sets this data structure is considerably more memory efficient than any exact data structure. In exchange, the use of a Count-Min Sketch introduces a systematic overcount for k-mers; moreover, only the counts, and not the k-mers, are stored. Here we analyze the speed, the memory usage, and the miscount rate of khmer for generating k-mer frequency distributions and retrieving k-mer counts for individual k-mers. We also compare the performance of khmer to several other k-mer counting packages, including Tallymer, Jellyfish, BFCounter, DSK, KMC, Turtle and KAnalyze. Finally, we examine the effectiveness of profiling sequencing error, k-mer abundance trimming, and digital normalization of reads in the context of high khmer false positive rates. khmer is implemented in C++ wrapped in a Python interface, offers a tested and robust API, and is freely available under the BSD license at github.com/ged-lab/khmer. PMID:25062443

  5. Constitutive synthesis of a transport function encoded by the Thiobacillus ferrooxidans merC gene cloned in Escherichia coli

    SciTech Connect

    Kusano, Tomonobu Akita Prefectural College of Agriculture ); Ji, Guangyong; Silver, S. ); Inoue, Chihiro )

    1990-05-01

    Mercuric reductase activity determined by the Thiobacillus ferrooxidans merA gene (cloned and expressed constitutively in Escherichia coli) was measured by volatilization of {sup 203}Hg{sup 2+}. (The absence of a merR regulatory gene in the cloned Thiobacillus mer determinant provides a basis for the constitutive synthesis of this system.) In the absence of the Thiobacillus merC transport gene, the mercury volatilization activity was cryptic and was not seen with whole cells but only with sonication-disrupted cells. The Thiobacillus merC transport function was compared with transport via the merT-merP system of plasmid pDU1358. Both systems, cloned and expressed in E. coli, governed enhanced uptake of {sup 203}Hg{sup 2+} in a temperature- and concentration-dependent fashion. Uptake via MerT-MerP was greater and conferred greater hypersensitivity to Hg{sup 2+} than did uptake with MerC. Mercury uptake was inhibited by N-ethylmaleimide but not by EDTA. Ag{sup +} salts inhibited mercury uptake by the MerT-MerP system but did not inhibit uptake via MerC. Radioactive mercury accumulated by the MerT-MerP and by the MerC systems was exchangeable with nonradioactive Hg{sup 2+}.

  6. Computational Performance Assessment of k-mer Counting Algorithms.

    PubMed

    Pérez, Nelson; Gutierrez, Miguel; Vera, Nelson

    2016-04-01

    This article is about the assessment of several tools for k-mer counting, with the purpose to create a reference framework for bioinformatics researchers to identify computational requirements, parallelizing, advantages, disadvantages, and bottlenecks of each of the algorithms proposed in the tools. The k-mer counters evaluated in this article were BFCounter, DSK, Jellyfish, KAnalyze, KHMer, KMC2, MSPKmerCounter, Tallymer, and Turtle. Measured parameters were the following: RAM occupied space, processing time, parallelization, and read and write disk access. A dataset consisting of 36,504,800 reads was used corresponding to the 14th human chromosome. The assessment was performed for two k-mer lengths: 31 and 55. Obtained results were the following: pure Bloom filter-based tools and disk-partitioning techniques showed a lesser RAM use. The tools that took less execution time were the ones that used disk-partitioning techniques. The techniques that made the major parallelization were the ones that used disk partitioning, hash tables with lock-free approach, or multiple hash tables. PMID:26982880

  7. MERS coronavirus induces apoptosis in kidney and lung by upregulating Smad7 and FGF2.

    PubMed

    Yeung, Man-Lung; Yao, Yanfeng; Jia, Lilong; Chan, Jasper F W; Chan, Kwok-Hung; Cheung, Kwok-Fan; Chen, Honglin; Poon, Vincent K M; Tsang, Alan K L; To, Kelvin K W; Yiu, Ming-Kwong; Teng, Jade L L; Chu, Hin; Zhou, Jie; Zhang, Qing; Deng, Wei; Lau, Susanna K P; Lau, Johnson Y N; Woo, Patrick C Y; Chan, Tak-Mao; Yung, Susan; Zheng, Bo-Jian; Jin, Dong-Yan; Mathieson, Peter W; Qin, Chuan; Yuen, Kwok-Yung

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes sporadic zoonotic disease and healthcare-associated outbreaks in human. MERS is often complicated by acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and multi-organ failure(1,2). The high incidence of renal failure in MERS is a unique clinical feature not often found in other human coronavirus infections(3,4). Whether MERS-CoV infects the kidney and how it triggers renal failure are not understood(5,6). Here, we demonstrated renal infection and apoptotic induction by MERS-CoV in human ex vivo organ culture and a nonhuman primate model. High-throughput analysis revealed that the cellular genes most significantly perturbed by MERS-CoV have previously been implicated in renal diseases. Furthermore, MERS-CoV induced apoptosis through upregulation of Smad7 and fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF2) expression in both kidney and lung cells. Conversely, knockdown of Smad7 effectively inhibited MERS-CoV replication and protected cells from virus-induced cytopathic effects. We further demonstrated that hyperexpression of Smad7 or FGF2 induced a strong apoptotic response in kidney cells. Common marmosets infected by MERS-CoV developed ARDS and disseminated infection in kidneys and other organs. Smad7 and FGF2 expression were elevated in the lungs and kidneys of the infected animals. Our results provide insights into the pathogenesis of MERS-CoV and host targets for treatment. PMID:27572168

  8. Replication and shedding of MERS-CoV in Jamaican fruit bats (Artibeus jamaicensis)

    PubMed Central

    Munster, Vincent J.; Adney, Danielle R.; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Brown, Vienna R.; Miazgowicz, Kerri L.; Milne-Price, Shauna; Bushmaker, Trenton; Rosenke, Rebecca; Scott, Dana; Hawkinson, Ann; de Wit, Emmie; Schountz, Tony; Bowen, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) highlights the zoonotic potential of Betacoronaviruses. Investigations into the origin of MERS-CoV have focused on two potential reservoirs: bats and camels. Here, we investigated the role of bats as a potential reservoir for MERS-CoV. In vitro, the MERS-CoV spike glycoprotein interacted with Jamaican fruit bat (Artibeus jamaicensis) dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4) receptor and MERS-CoV replicated efficiently in Jamaican fruit bat cells, suggesting there is no restriction at the receptor or cellular level for MERS-CoV. To shed light on the intrinsic host-virus relationship, we inoculated 10 Jamaican fruit bats with MERS-CoV. Although all bats showed evidence of infection, none of the bats showed clinical signs of disease. Virus shedding was detected in the respiratory and intestinal tract for up to 9 days. MERS-CoV replicated transiently in the respiratory and, to a lesser extent, the intestinal tracts and internal organs; with limited histopathological changes observed only in the lungs. Analysis of the innate gene expression in the lungs showed a moderate, transient induction of expression. Our results indicate that MERS-CoV maintains the ability to replicate in bats without clinical signs of disease, supporting the general hypothesis of bats as ancestral reservoirs for MERS-CoV. PMID:26899616

  9. Segmented K-mer and its application on similarity analysis of mitochondrial genome sequences.

    PubMed

    Yu, Hong-Jie

    2013-04-15

    K-mer-based approach has been widely used in similarity analyses so as to discover similarity/dissimilarity among different biological sequences. In this study, we have improved the traditional K-mer method, and introduce a segmented K-mer approach (s-K-mer). After each primary sequence is divided into several segments, we simultaneously transform all these segments into corresponding K-mer-based vectors. In this approach, it is vital how to determine the optimal combination of distance metric with the number of K and the number of segments, i.e., (K(⁎), s(⁎), and d(⁎)). Based on the cascaded feature vectors transformed from s(⁎) segmented sequences, we analyze 34 mammalian genome sequences using the proposed s-K-mer approach. Meanwhile, we compare the results of s-K-mer with those of traditional K-mer. The contrastive analysis results demonstrate that s-K-mer approach outperforms the traditionally K-mer method on similarity analysis among different species. PMID:23353775

  10. Replication and shedding of MERS-CoV in Jamaican fruit bats (Artibeus jamaicensis).

    PubMed

    Munster, Vincent J; Adney, Danielle R; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Brown, Vienna R; Miazgowicz, Kerri L; Milne-Price, Shauna; Bushmaker, Trenton; Rosenke, Rebecca; Scott, Dana; Hawkinson, Ann; de Wit, Emmie; Schountz, Tony; Bowen, Richard A

    2016-01-01

    The emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) highlights the zoonotic potential of Betacoronaviruses. Investigations into the origin of MERS-CoV have focused on two potential reservoirs: bats and camels. Here, we investigated the role of bats as a potential reservoir for MERS-CoV. In vitro, the MERS-CoV spike glycoprotein interacted with Jamaican fruit bat (Artibeus jamaicensis) dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4) receptor and MERS-CoV replicated efficiently in Jamaican fruit bat cells, suggesting there is no restriction at the receptor or cellular level for MERS-CoV. To shed light on the intrinsic host-virus relationship, we inoculated 10 Jamaican fruit bats with MERS-CoV. Although all bats showed evidence of infection, none of the bats showed clinical signs of disease. Virus shedding was detected in the respiratory and intestinal tract for up to 9 days. MERS-CoV replicated transiently in the respiratory and, to a lesser extent, the intestinal tracts and internal organs; with limited histopathological changes observed only in the lungs. Analysis of the innate gene expression in the lungs showed a moderate, transient induction of expression. Our results indicate that MERS-CoV maintains the ability to replicate in bats without clinical signs of disease, supporting the general hypothesis of bats as ancestral reservoirs for MERS-CoV. PMID:26899616

  11. Evaluation of MerCAP for Power Plant Mercury Control

    SciTech Connect

    Carl Richardson

    2008-09-30

    This report is submitted to the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE-NETL) as part of Cooperative Agreement DE-FC26-03NT41993, 'Evaluation of EPRI's MerCAP{trademark} Technology for Power Plant Mercury Control'. This project has investigated the mercury removal performance of EPRI's Mercury Capture by Amalgamation Process (MerCAP{trademark}) technology. Test programs were conducted to evaluate gold-based MerCAP{trademark} at Great River Energy's Stanton Station Unit 10 (Site 1), which fired both North Dakota lignite (NDL) and Power River Basin (PRB) coal during the testing period, and at Georgia Power's Plant Yates Unit 1 (Site 2) [Georgia Power is a subsidiary of The Southern Company] which fires a low sulfur Eastern bituminous coal. Additional tests were carried out at Alabama Power's Plant Miller, which fires Powder River Basin Coal, to evaluate a carbon-based MerCAP{trademark} process for removing mercury from flue gas downstream of an electrostatic precipitator [Alabama Power is a subsidiary of The Southern Company]. A full-scale gold-based sorbent array was installed in the clean-air plenum of a single baghouse compartment at GRE's Stanton Station Unit 10, thereby treating 1/10th of the unit's exhaust gas flow. The substrates that were installed were electroplated gold screens oriented parallel to the flue gas flow. The sorbent array was initially installed in late August of 2004, operating continuously until its removal in July 2006, after nearly 23 months. The initial 4 months of operation were conducted while the host unit was burning North Dakota lignite (NDL). In November 2004, the host unit switched fuel to burn Powder River Basin (PRB) subbituminous coal and continued to burn the PRB fuel for the final 19 months of this program. Tests were conducted at Site 1 to evaluate the impacts of flue gas flow rate, sorbent plate spacing, sorbent pre-cleaning and regeneration, and spray dryer operation on Mer

  12. MERS-CoV in a healthcare worker in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia: an index case investigation.

    PubMed

    Shalhoub, S; Abdraboh, S; Palma, R; AlSharif, H; Assiri, N

    2016-07-01

    In September 2015, a confirmed case of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) was diagnosed in a healthcare worker in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Given the absence of confirmed MERS cases in Jeddah at the time, an epidemiological index case investigation took place. The investigation identified a probable source of an index case who had been in hospital in Jordan in August 2015 while there was an ongoing MERS outbreak and who then subsequently sought medical care in Jeddah. PMID:27210272

  13. Aberrant Mer receptor tyrosine kinase expression contributes to leukemogenesis in acute myeloid leukemia

    PubMed Central

    Lee-Sherick, A B; Eisenman, K M; Sather, S; McGranahan, A; Armistead, P M; McGary, C S; Hunsucker, S A; Schlegel, J; Martinson, H; Cannon, C; Keating, A K; Earp, H S; Liang, X; DeRyckere, D; Graham, D K

    2013-01-01

    Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) continues to be extremely difficult to treat successfully, and the unacceptably low overall survival rates mandate that we assess new potential therapies to ameliorate poor clinical response to conventional therapy. Abnormal tyrosine kinase activation in AML has been associated with poor prognosis and provides strategic targets for novel therapy development. We found that Mer receptor tyrosine kinase was over-expressed in a majority of pediatric (29/36, 80%) and adult (10/10, 100%) primary AML patient blasts at the time of diagnosis, and 100% of patient samples at the time of relapse. Mer was also found to be expressed in 12 of 14 AML cell lines (86%). In contrast, normal bone marrow myeloid precursors expressed little to no Mer. Following AML cell line stimulation with Gas6, a Mer ligand, we observed activation of prosurvival and proliferative signaling pathways, including phosphorylation of ERK1/2, p38, MSK1, CREB, ATF1, AKT and STAT6. To assess the phenotypic role of Mer in AML, two independent short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) constructs were used to decrease Mer expression in the AML cell lines Nomo-1 and Kasumi-1. Reduction of Mer protein levels significantly increased rates of myeloblast apoptosis two to threefold in response to serum starvation. Furthermore, myeloblasts with knocked-down Mer demonstrated decreased colony formation by 67–87%, relative to control cell lines (P<0.01). NOD-SCID-gamma mice transplanted with Nomo-1 myeloblasts with reduced levels of Mer had a significant prolongation in survival compared with mice transplanted with the parental or control cell lines (median survival 17 days in parental and control cell lines, versus 32–36 days in Mer knockdown cell lines, P<0.0001). These data suggest a role for Mer in acute myeloid leukemogenesis and indicate that targeted inhibition of Mer may be an effective therapeutic strategy in pediatric and adult AML. PMID:23474756

  14. Aberrant Mer receptor tyrosine kinase expression contributes to leukemogenesis in acute myeloid leukemia.

    PubMed

    Lee-Sherick, A B; Eisenman, K M; Sather, S; McGranahan, A; Armistead, P M; McGary, C S; Hunsucker, S A; Schlegel, J; Martinson, H; Cannon, C; Keating, A K; Earp, H S; Liang, X; DeRyckere, D; Graham, D K

    2013-11-14

    Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) continues to be extremely difficult to treat successfully, and the unacceptably low overall survival rates mandate that we assess new potential therapies to ameliorate poor clinical response to conventional therapy. Abnormal tyrosine kinase activation in AML has been associated with poor prognosis and provides strategic targets for novel therapy development. We found that Mer receptor tyrosine kinase was over-expressed in a majority of pediatric (29/36, 80%) and adult (10/10, 100%) primary AML patient blasts at the time of diagnosis, and 100% of patient samples at the time of relapse. Mer was also found to be expressed in 12 of 14 AML cell lines (86%). In contrast, normal bone marrow myeloid precursors expressed little to no Mer. Following AML cell line stimulation with Gas6, a Mer ligand, we observed activation of prosurvival and proliferative signaling pathways, including phosphorylation of ERK1/2, p38, MSK1, CREB, ATF1, AKT and STAT6. To assess the phenotypic role of Mer in AML, two independent short-hairpin RNA (shRNA) constructs were used to decrease Mer expression in the AML cell lines Nomo-1 and Kasumi-1. Reduction of Mer protein levels significantly increased rates of myeloblast apoptosis two to threefold in response to serum starvation. Furthermore, myeloblasts with knocked-down Mer demonstrated decreased colony formation by 67-87%, relative to control cell lines (P<0.01). NOD-SCID-gamma mice transplanted with Nomo-1 myeloblasts with reduced levels of Mer had a significant prolongation in survival compared with mice transplanted with the parental or control cell lines (median survival 17 days in parental and control cell lines, versus 32-36 days in Mer knockdown cell lines, P<0.0001). These data suggest a role for Mer in acute myeloid leukemogenesis and indicate that targeted inhibition of Mer may be an effective therapeutic strategy in pediatric and adult AML. PMID:23474756

  15. Disk-based k-mer counting on a PC

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The k-mer counting problem, which is to build the histogram of occurrences of every k-symbol long substring in a given text, is important for many bioinformatics applications. They include developing de Bruijn graph genome assemblers, fast multiple sequence alignment and repeat detection. Results We propose a simple, yet efficient, parallel disk-based algorithm for counting k-mers. Experiments show that it usually offers the fastest solution to the considered problem, while demanding a relatively small amount of memory. In particular, it is capable of counting the statistics for short-read human genome data, in input gzipped FASTQ file, in less than 40 minutes on a PC with 16 GB of RAM and 6 CPU cores, and for long-read human genome data in less than 70 minutes. On a more powerful machine, using 32 GB of RAM and 32 CPU cores, the tasks are accomplished in less than half the time. No other algorithm for most tested settings of this problem and mammalian-size data can accomplish this task in comparable time. Our solution also belongs to memory-frugal ones; most competitive algorithms cannot efficiently work on a PC with 16 GB of memory for such massive data. Conclusions By making use of cheap disk space and exploiting CPU and I/O parallelism we propose a very competitive k-mer counting procedure, called KMC. Our results suggest that judicious resource management may allow to solve at least some bioinformatics problems with massive data on a commodity personal computer. PMID:23679007

  16. Planetary GIS on the Web for the MER 2003 Landers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hare, T. M.; Tanaka, K. L.; Skinner, J. A.

    2001-01-01

    PIGWAD or "Planetary Interactive GIS-on-the-Web Analyzable Database," has been operational since May of 1999. It currently provides GIS database support for the research and academic planetary science communities. We are now focused on creating a Mars Exploration Rover (MER) web-based landing-site analysis page. Along with the NASA Ames Research Center's web site, the PIGWAD web server also contains mission information including engineering constraints. The marriage of these two web sites gives scientists a great resource of information to analyze for landing-site selection.

  17. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) entry inhibitors targeting spike protein.

    PubMed

    Xia, Shuai; Liu, Qi; Wang, Qian; Sun, Zhiwu; Su, Shan; Du, Lanying; Ying, Tianlei; Lu, Lu; Jiang, Shibo

    2014-12-19

    The recent outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection has led to more than 800 laboratory-confirmed MERS cases with a high case fatality rate (∼35%), posing a serious threat to global public health and calling for the development of effective and safe therapeutic and prophylactic strategies to treat and prevent MERS-CoV infection. Here we discuss the most recent studies on the structure of the MERS-CoV spike protein and its role in virus binding and entry, and the development of MERS-CoV entry/fusion inhibitors targeting the S1 subunit, particularly the receptor-binding domain (RBD), and the S2 subunit, especially the HR1 region, of the MERS-CoV spike protein. We then look ahead to future applications of these viral entry/fusion inhibitors, either alone or in combination with specific and nonspecific MERS-CoV replication inhibitors, for the treatment and prevention of MERS-CoV infection. PMID:25451066

  18. CoMeta: Classification of Metagenomes Using k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Kawulok, Jolanta; Deorowicz, Sebastian

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, the study of environmental samples has been developing rapidly. Characterization of the environment composition broadens the knowledge about the relationship between species composition and environmental conditions. An important element of extracting the knowledge of the sample composition is to compare the extracted fragments of DNA with sequences derived from known organisms. In the presented paper, we introduce an algorithm called CoMeta (Classification of metagenomes), which assigns a query read (a DNA fragment) into one of the groups previously prepared by the user. Typically, this is one of the taxonomic rank (e.g., phylum, genus), however prepared groups may contain sequences having various functions. In CoMeta, we used the exact method for read classification using short subsequences (k-mers) and fast program for indexing large set of k-mers. In contrast to the most popular methods based on BLAST, where the query is compared with each reference sequence, we begin the classification from the top of the taxonomy tree to reduce the number of comparisons. The presented experimental study confirms that CoMeta outperforms other programs used in this context. CoMeta is available at https://github.com/jkawulok/cometa under a free GNU GPL 2 license. PMID:25884504

  19. mer and fac isomerism in tris chelate diimine metal complexes.

    PubMed

    Dabb, Serin L; Fletcher, Nicholas C

    2015-03-14

    In this perspective, we highlight the issue of meridional (mer) and facial (fac) orientation of asymmetrical diimines in tris-chelate transition metal complexes. Diimine ligands have long been the workhorse of coordination chemistry, and whilst there are now good strategies to isolate materials where the inherent metal centered chirality is under almost complete control, and systematic methodologies to isolate heteroleptic complexes, the conceptually simple geometrical isomerism has not been widely investigated. In systems where the two donor atoms are significantly different in terms of the σ-donor and π-accepting ability, the fac isomer is likely to be the thermodynamic product. For the diimine complexes with two trigonal planar nitrogen atoms there is much more subtlety to the system, and external factors such as the solvent, lattice packing and the various steric considerations play a delicate role in determining the observed and isolable product. In this article we discuss the possibilities to control the isomeric ratio in labile systems, consider the opportunities to separate inert complexes and discuss the observed differences in their spectroscopic properties. Finally we report on the ligand orientation in supramolecular systems where facial coordination leads to simple regular structures such as helicates and tetrahedra, but the ability of the ligand system to adopt a mer orientation enables self-assembled structures of considerable beauty and complexity. PMID:25600485

  20. Overlapping MERS and mild AESD caused by HHV-6 infection.

    PubMed

    Hatanaka, Mari; Kashiwagi, Mitsuru; Tanabe, Takuya; Nakahara, Hiroshi; Ohta, Kazumi; Tamai, Hiroshi

    2015-03-01

    We report the case of an overlapping encephalopathy syndrome consisting of clinically mild encephalitis/encephalopathy with a reversible splenial lesion (MERS) and a mild form of acute encephalopathy with biphasic seizures and late reduced diffusion (AESD) caused by human herpesvirus-6. A previously healthy 17-month-old girl was admitted to our hospital as a precaution because of seizures that had developed more than 25 hours (h) after fever. Brain diffusion-weighted images (DWI) showed high signal intensity in the central splenial region on Day 2. She regained consciousness 16 h after the second seizure. On Day 6, she had a secondary cluster of partial seizures. DWI showed resolution of the splenial lesion and revealed reduced diffusion in the fronto-subcortical white matter. She regained consciousness 36 h after the secondary cluster of seizures without any sequelae. A third DWI performed on Day 15 showed that the fronto-subcortical white matter lesions had completely disappeared. Based on the clinicoradiological findings, we diagnosed the patient with overlapping MERS and mild AESD. Our case, together with previous reports, suggests that patients can develop combined encephalopathy syndromes as a phenotype. Many encephalopathy syndromes have been established and classified; however, some may not present as independent syndromes. PMID:24856142

  1. CoMeta: classification of metagenomes using k-mers.

    PubMed

    Kawulok, Jolanta; Deorowicz, Sebastian

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, the study of environmental samples has been developing rapidly. Characterization of the environment composition broadens the knowledge about the relationship between species composition and environmental conditions. An important element of extracting the knowledge of the sample composition is to compare the extracted fragments of DNA with sequences derived from known organisms. In the presented paper, we introduce an algorithm called CoMeta (Classification of metagenomes), which assigns a query read (a DNA fragment) into one of the groups previously prepared by the user. Typically, this is one of the taxonomic rank (e.g., phylum, genus), however prepared groups may contain sequences having various functions. In CoMeta, we used the exact method for read classification using short subsequences (k-mers) and fast program for indexing large set of k-mers. In contrast to the most popular methods based on BLAST, where the query is compared with each reference sequence, we begin the classification from the top of the taxonomy tree to reduce the number of comparisons. The presented experimental study confirms that CoMeta outperforms other programs used in this context. CoMeta is available at https://github.com/jkawulok/cometa under a free GNU GPL 2 license. PMID:25884504

  2. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV): animal to human interaction.

    PubMed

    Omrani, Ali S; Al-Tawfiq, Jaffar A; Memish, Ziad A

    2015-01-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a novel enzootic betacoronavirus that was first described in September 2012. The clinical spectrum of MERS-CoV infection in humans ranges from an asymptomatic or mild respiratory illness to severe pneumonia and multi-organ failure; overall mortality is around 35.7%. Bats harbour several betacoronaviruses that are closely related to MERS-CoV but more research is needed to establish the relationship between bats and MERS-CoV. The seroprevalence of MERS-CoV antibodies is very high in dromedary camels in Eastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. MERS-CoV RNA and viable virus have been isolated from dromedary camels, including some with respiratory symptoms. Furthermore, near-identical strains of MERS-CoV have been isolated from epidemiologically linked humans and camels, confirming inter-transmission, most probably from camels to humans. Though inter-human spread within health care settings is responsible for the majority of reported MERS-CoV cases, the virus is incapable at present of causing sustained human-to-human transmission. Clusters can be readily controlled with implementation of appropriate infection control procedures. Phylogenetic and sequencing data strongly suggest that MERS-CoV originated from bat ancestors after undergoing a recombination event in the spike protein, possibly in dromedary camels in Africa, before its exportation to the Arabian Peninsula along the camel trading routes. MERS-CoV serosurveys are needed to investigate possible unrecognized human infections in Africa. Amongst the important measures to control MERS-CoV spread are strict regulation of camel movement, regular herd screening and isolation of infected camels, use of personal protective equipment by camel handlers and enforcing rules banning all consumption of unpasteurized camel milk and urine. PMID:26924345

  3. Structural basis of the mercury(II)-mediated conformational switching of the dual-function transcriptional regulator MerR

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Chih-Chiang; Lin, Li-Ying; Zou, Xiao-Wei; Huang, Chieh-Chen; Chan, Nei-Li

    2015-01-01

    The mer operon confers bacterial resistance to inorganic mercury (Hg2+) and organomercurials by encoding proteins involved in sensing, transport and detoxification of these cytotoxic agents. Expression of the mer operon is under tight control by the dual-function transcriptional regulator MerR. The metal-free, apo MerR binds to the mer operator/promoter region as a repressor to block transcription initiation, but is converted into an activator upon Hg2+-binding. To understand how MerR interacts with Hg2+ and how Hg2+-binding modulates MerR function, we report here the crystal structures of apo and Hg2+-bound MerR from Bacillus megaterium, corresponding respectively to the repressor and activator conformation of MerR. To our knowledge, the apo-MerR structure represents the first visualization of a MerR family member in its intact and inducer-free form. And the Hg2+-MerR structure offers the first view of a triligated Hg2+-thiolate center in a metalloprotein, confirming that MerR binds Hg2+ via trigonal planar coordination geometry. Structural comparison revealed the conformational transition of MerR is coupled to the assembly/disassembly of a buried Hg2+ binding site, thereby providing a structural basis for the Hg2+-mediated functional switching of MerR. The pronounced Hg2+-induced repositioning of the MerR DNA-binding domains suggests a plausible mechanism for the transcriptional regulation of the mer operon. PMID:26150423

  4. MERS epidemiological investigation to detect potential mode of transmission in the 178th MERS confirmed case in Pyeongtaek, Korea

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Kyujin; Ki, Moran; Lee, Eun Gyu; Lee, Soon Young; Yoo, Byoungin; Choi, Jong Hyuk

    2015-01-01

    Most cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) infection in Korea (outbreak: May 11-July 4, 2015) occurred in hospital settings, with uncertain transmission modes in some cases. We performed an in-depth investigation epidemiological survey on the 178th case to determine the precise mode of transmission. A 29- year-old man living in Pyeongtaek presented on June 16 with a febrile sensation, chills, and myalgia. Upon confirmatory diagnosis on June 23, he was treated in an isolation room and discharged on July 2 after cure. An epidemiological investigation of all possible infection routes indicated two likely modes of transmission: exposure to MERS in Pyeongtaek St. Mary’s Hospital during a visit to his hospitalized father (May 18-29), and infection through frequent contact with his father between the latter’s referral to Pyeongtaek Good Samaritan Bagae Hospital for treatment without confirmatory diagnosis until his death (May 29-June 6). Although lack of clear proof or evidence to the contrary does not allow a definitive conclusion, all other possibilities could be excluded by epidemiological inferences. While it is impossible to trace back the modes of transmission of all cases in a large-scale outbreak, case-by-case tracking and isolation of infected individuals and those in close contact with them is important in preventing the spread. Efforts should be made to establish a methodology for rapid tracking of all possible contacts and elimination-based identification of the precise modes of transmission. PMID:26493651

  5. 19F-NMR reveals metal and operator-induced allostery in MerR.

    PubMed

    Song, Lingyun; Teng, Quincy; Phillips, Robert S; Brewer, John M; Summers, Anne O

    2007-08-01

    Metalloregulators of the MerR family activate transcription upon metal binding by underwinding the operator-promoter DNA to permit open complex formation by pre-bound RNA polymerase. Historically, MerR's allostery has been monitored only indirectly via nuclease sensitivity or by fluorescent nucleotide probes and was very specific for Hg(II), although purified MerR binds several thiophilic metals. To observe directly MerR's ligand-induced behavior we made 2-fluorotyrosine-substituted MerR and found similar, minor changes in (19)F chemical shifts of tyrosine residues in the free protein exposed to Hg(II), Cd(II) or Zn(II). However, DNA binding elicits large chemical shift changes in MerR's tyrosine residues and in DNA-bound MerR Hg(II) provokes changes very distinct from those of Cd(II) or Zn(II). These chemical shift changes and other biophysical and phenotypic properties of wild-type MerR and relevant mutants reveal elements of an allosteric network that enables the coordination state of the metal binding site to direct metal-specific movements in the distant DNA binding site and the DNA-bound state also to affect the metal binding domain. PMID:17560604

  6. Exportations of Symptomatic Cases of MERS-CoV Infection to Countries outside the Middle East.

    PubMed

    Carias, Cristina; O'Hagan, Justin J; Jewett, Amy; Gambhir, Manoj; Cohen, Nicole J; Haber, Yoni; Pesik, Nicki; Swerdlow, David L

    2016-04-01

    In 2012, an outbreak of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), was detected in the Arabian Peninsula. Modeling can produce estimates of the expected annual number of symptomatic cases of MERS-CoV infection exported and the likelihood of exportation from source countries in the Middle East to countries outside the region. PMID:27358972

  7. Knowledge and Apprehension of Dental Patients about MERS-A Questionnaire Survey

    PubMed Central

    Ashok, Nipun; Rodrigues, Jean Clare; Azouni, Khalid; Darwish, Shorouk; Abuderman, Abdulwahab; Alkaabba, Abdul Aziz Fahad

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a disease caused by beta corona virus. From April 11th to 9th June 2014, World Health Organization (WHO) reported a total of 402 laboratory confirmed cases of MERS from KSA, out of which 132 cases were reported from Riyadh alone. Aim The aim of this study was to assess the knowledge and apprehension of patients about MERS visiting Al Farabi College of Dentistry, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods A cross-sectional questionnaire based survey was conducted which consisted of 10 self-prepared questions. A total of 404 patients participated in this study. Results Three hundred and forty patients had heard about MERS. Nearly a quarter of the patients (25.74%) were apprehensive about undergoing dental treatment because of MERS. A little more than half of the patients (50.99%) knew that camel was a source of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-Corona virus. Most of the patients (80.72%) were aware of the infection control measures to be followed by dentist and 138 patients claimed they took some precaution when present inside the dental college. Conclusion Majority of the patients had heard about MERS and was aware of the infection control measures. However, some patients were apprehensive about undergoing dental treatment because of MERS. Further steps need to be taken to educate the patient’s about transmission of MERS and infection control measures in a dental hospital. PMID:27437361

  8. Evolutionary Dynamics of MERS-CoV: Potential Recombination, Positive Selection and Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhao; Shen, Libing; Gu, Xun

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) belongs to beta group of coronavirus and was first discovered in 2012. MERS-CoV can infect multiple host species and cause severe diseases in human. We conducted a series of phylogenetic and bioinformatic analyses to study the evolution dynamics of MERS-CoV among different host species with genomic data. Our analyses show: 1) 28 potential recombinant sequences were detected and they can be classified into seven potential recombinant types; 2) The spike (S) protein of MERS-CoV was under strong positive selection when MERS-CoV transmitted from their natural host to human; 3) Six out of nine positive selection sites detected in spike (S) protein are located in its receptor-binding domain which is in direct contact with host cells; 4) MERS-CoV frequently transmitted back and forth between human and camel after it had acquired the human-camel infection capability. Together, these results suggest that potential recombination events might have happened frequently during MERS-CoV’s evolutionary history and the positive selection sites in MERS-CoV’s S protein might enable it to infect human. PMID:27142087

  9. Evolutionary Dynamics of MERS-CoV: Potential Recombination, Positive Selection and Transmission.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhao; Shen, Libing; Gu, Xun

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) belongs to beta group of coronavirus and was first discovered in 2012. MERS-CoV can infect multiple host species and cause severe diseases in human. We conducted a series of phylogenetic and bioinformatic analyses to study the evolution dynamics of MERS-CoV among different host species with genomic data. Our analyses show: 1) 28 potential recombinant sequences were detected and they can be classified into seven potential recombinant types; 2) The spike (S) protein of MERS-CoV was under strong positive selection when MERS-CoV transmitted from their natural host to human; 3) Six out of nine positive selection sites detected in spike (S) protein are located in its receptor-binding domain which is in direct contact with host cells; 4) MERS-CoV frequently transmitted back and forth between human and camel after it had acquired the human-camel infection capability. Together, these results suggest that potential recombination events might have happened frequently during MERS-CoV's evolutionary history and the positive selection sites in MERS-CoV's S protein might enable it to infect human. PMID:27142087

  10. Exportations of Symptomatic Cases of MERS-CoV Infection to Countries outside the Middle East

    PubMed Central

    O’Hagan, Justin J.; Jewett, Amy; Gambhir, Manoj; Cohen, Nicole J.; Haber, Yoni; Pesik, Nicki; Swerdlow, David L.

    2016-01-01

    In 2012, an outbreak of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), was detected in the Arabian Peninsula. Modeling can produce estimates of the expected annual number of symptomatic cases of MERS-CoV infection exported and the likelihood of exportation from source countries in the Middle East to countries outside the region. PMID:27358972

  11. MER : from landing to six wheels on Mars ... twice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krajewski, Joel; Burke, Kevin; Lewicki, Chris; Limonadi, Daniel; Trebi-Ollennu, Ashitey; Voorhees, Chris

    2005-01-01

    Application of the Pathfinder landing system design to enclose the much larger Mars Exploration Rover required a variety of Rover deployments to achieve the surface driving configuration. The project schedule demanded that software design, engineering model test, and flight hardware build to be accomplished in parallel. This challenge was met through (a) bounding unknown environments against which to design and test, (b) early mechanical prototype testing, (c) constraining the scope of on-board autonomy to survival-critical deployments, (d) executing a balance of nominal and off-nominal test cases, (e) developing off-nominal event mitigation techniques before landing, (f) flexible replanning in response to surprises during operations. Here is discussed several specific events encountered during initial MER surface operations.

  12. The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Transverse Impulse Rocket System (TIRS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    SanMartin, Alejandro Miguel; Bailey, Erik

    2005-01-01

    In a very short period of time the MER project successfully developed and tested a system, TIRS/DIMES, to improve the probability of success in the presence of large Martian winds. The successful development of TIRS/DIMES played a big role in the landing site selection process by enabling the landing of Spirit on Gusev crater, a site of very high scientific interest but with known high wind conditions. The performance of TIRS by Spirit at Gusev Crater was excellent. The velocity prediction error was small and Big TIRS was fired reducing the impact horizontal velocity from approximately 23 meters per second to approximately 11 meters per second, well within the airbag capabilities. The performance of TIRS by Opportunity at Meridiani was good. The velocity prediction error was rather large (approximately 6 meters per second, a less than 2 sigma value, but TIRS did not fire which was the correct action.

  13. MER-DIMES : a planetary landing application of computer vision

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheng, Yang; Johnson, Andrew; Matthies, Larry

    2005-01-01

    During the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) landings, the Descent Image Motion Estimation System (DIMES) was used for horizontal velocity estimation. The DIMES algorithm combines measurements from a descent camera, a radar altimeter and an inertial measurement unit. To deal with large changes in scale and orientation between descent images, the algorithm uses altitude and attitude measurements to rectify image data to level ground plane. Feature selection and tracking is employed in the rectified data to compute the horizontal motion between images. Differences of motion estimates are then compared to inertial measurements to verify correct feature tracking. DIMES combines sensor data from multiple sources in a novel way to create a low-cost, robust and computationally efficient velocity estimation solution, and DIMES is the first use of computer vision to control a spacecraft during planetary landing. In this paper, the detailed implementation of the DIMES algorithm and the results from the two landings on Mars are presented.

  14. MERS and the dromedary camel trade between Africa and the Middle East.

    PubMed

    Younan, M; Bornstein, S; Gluecks, I V

    2016-08-01

    Dromedary camels are the most likely source for the coronavirus that sporadically causes Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in humans. Serological results from archived camel sera provide evidence for circulation of MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV) among dromedary camels in the Greater Horn of Africa as far back as 1983 and in Saudi Arabia as far back as 1992. High seroprevalences of MERS-CoV antibodies and the high virus prevalence in Saudi Arabian dromedary camels indicate an endemicity of the virus in the Arabian Peninsula, which predates the 2012 human MERS index case. Saudi Arabian dromedary camels show significantly higher MERS-CoV carrier rates than dromedary camels imported from Africa. Two MERS-CoV lineages identified in Nigerian camels were found to be genetically distinct from those found in camels and humans in the Middle East. This supports the hypothesis that camel imports from Africa are not of significance for circulation of the virus in camel populations of the Arabian Peninsula. PMID:27324244

  15. Sero-epidemiology of MERS coronavirus in Saudi Arabia (1993) and Australia (2014) and characterization of assay specificity

    PubMed Central

    Hemida, MG; Perera, RAPM; Al Jassim, RAM; Kayali, G; Siu, LY; Wang, P; Chu, DKW; Perlman, S; Ali, MA; Alnaeem, A; Poon, LLM; Saif, L; Peiris, M

    2015-01-01

    Pseudoparticle virus neutralization (ppNT) and a conventional microneutralization (MN) assays are specific for detecting antibodies to MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV) when used in sero-epidemiological studies in animals. Genetically diverse MERS-CoV appear antigenically similar in MN tests. We confirm that MERS-CoV has been circulating in dromedaries in Saudi Arabia in 1993. Preliminary data suggests that feral Australian dromedaries may be free of MERS-CoV but larger confirmatory studies are needed. PMID:24957744

  16. Opposing Roles of Tyrosine Kinase Receptors Mer and Axl Determine Clinical Outcomes in Experimental Immune-Mediated Nephritis.

    PubMed

    Zhen, Yuxuan; Priest, Stephen O; Shao, Wen-Hai

    2016-09-15

    Glomerulonephritis is one of the most severe manifestations of systemic lupus erythematosus, with considerable morbidity and mortality. There remains a major unmet need for successful management of lupus nephritis. TAM family receptor tyrosine kinases (Mer and Axl) play an important role in the maintenance of immune homeostasis in the kidney. Mer is constitutively expressed in the glomeruli; Axl expression is inducible in glomeruli under inflammatory conditions. To investigate the distinct functions of Axl and Mer in lupus nephritis, we compared the severity of nephrotoxic serum glomerulonephritis in wild-type (WT), Axl-knockout (KO), Mer-KO, and Axl/Mer-KO mice. Mer-KO mice developed severe glomerulonephritis, with significantly decreased survival and increased blood urea nitrogen levels compared with WT mice given the same treatment. However, nephrotoxic serum-treated Axl-KO mice had significantly increased survival rates and improved renal function compared with similarly treated WT, Mer-KO, and Axl/Mer-KO mice. Interestingly, mice lacking both Axl and Mer developed kidney inflammation comparable to WT mice. Western blot analysis revealed significantly increased Stat3 phosphorylation and caspase-1 activation in the kidneys of nephritic Mer-KO mice. In contrast, Axl-deficient nephrotoxic serum-injected mice showed decreased Akt phosphorylation and Bcl-xL upregulation. Thus, the reciprocal activation of Axl and Mer receptor tyrosine kinases has a major impact on the outcome of renal inflammation. PMID:27527599

  17. Prophylaxis With a Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV)-Specific Human Monoclonal Antibody Protects Rabbits From MERS-CoV Infection.

    PubMed

    Houser, Katherine V; Gretebeck, Lisa; Ying, Tianlei; Wang, Yanping; Vogel, Leatrice; Lamirande, Elaine W; Bock, Kevin W; Moore, Ian N; Dimitrov, Dimiter S; Subbarao, Kanta

    2016-05-15

    With >1600 documented human infections with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and a case fatality rate of approximately 36%, medical countermeasures are needed to prevent and limit the disease. We examined the in vivo efficacy of the human monoclonal antibody m336, which has high neutralizing activity against MERS-CoV in vitro. m336 was administered to rabbits intravenously or intranasally before infection with MERS-CoV. Prophylaxis with m336 resulted in a reduction of pulmonary viral RNA titers by 40-9000-fold, compared with an irrelevant control antibody with little to no inflammation or viral antigen detected. This protection in rabbits supports further clinical development of m336. PMID:26941283

  18. Water on Mars: Evidence from MER Mission Results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2004-01-01

    The Viking and the Mars Exploration Rover missions observed that the surface of Mars is encrusted by a thinly cemented layer, or "duricrust". Elemental analyzes at five sites on Mars show that these soils have sulfur content and chlorine content consistent with the presence of sulfates and halides as mineral cements. The soil is highly enriched in the salt-forming elements compared with rock. Analysis of the soil cementation indicates some features which may be evidence of liquid water. At both MER sites, duricrust textures revealed by the Microscopic Imager show features including the presence of fine sand-sized grains, some of which may be aggregates of fine silt and clay, surrounded by a pervasive light colored material that is associated with microtubular structures and networks of microfractures. Stereo views of undisturbed duricrust surfaces reveal rugged microrelief between 2-3 mm and minimal loose material. Comparisons of microscopic images of duricrust soils obtain before and after placement of the Mossbauer spectrometer indicate differing degrees of compaction and cementation. Two models of a transient water hypothesis are offered, a "top down" hypothesis that emphasizes the surface deposition of frost, melting and downward migration of liquid water and a "bottom up" alternative that proposes the presence of interstitial ice/brine, with the upward capillary migration of liquid water. The viability of both of these models ultimately hinges on the availability of seasonally transient liquid water for brief periods.

  19. Redefining Tactical Operations for MER Using Cloud Computing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Joswig, Joseph C.; Shams, Khawaja S.

    2011-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover Mission (MER) includes the twin rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, which have been performing geological research and surface exploration since early 2004. The rovers' durability well beyond their original prime mission (90 sols or Martian days) has allowed them to be a valuable platform for scientific research for well over 2000 sols, but as a by-product it has produced new challenges in providing efficient and cost-effective tactical operational planning. An early stage process adaptation was the move to distributed operations as mission scientists returned to their places of work in the summer of 2004, but they would still came together via teleconference and connected software to plan rover activities a few times a week. This distributed model has worked well since, but it requires the purchase, operation, and maintenance of a dedicated infrastructure at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. This server infrastructure is costly to operate and the periodic nature of its usage (typically heavy usage for 8 hours every 2 days) has made moving to a cloud based tactical infrastructure an extremely tempting proposition. In this paper we will review both past and current implementations of the tactical planning application focusing on remote plan saving and discuss the unique challenges present with long-latency, distributed operations. We then detail the motivations behind our move to cloud based computing services and as well as our system design and implementation. We will discuss security and reliability concerns and how they were addressed

  20. Autonomous Navigation Results from the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maimone, Mark; Johnson, Andrew; Cheng, Yang; Willson, Reg; Matthies, Larry H.

    2004-01-01

    In January, 2004, the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission landed two rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, on the surface of Mars. Several autonomous navigation capabilities were employed in space for the first time in this mission. ]n the Entry, Descent, and Landing (EDL) phase, both landers used a vision system called the, Descent Image Motion Estimation System (DIMES) to estimate horizontal velocity during the last 2000 meters (m) of descent, by tracking features on the ground with a downlooking camera, in order to control retro-rocket firing to reduce horizontal velocity before impact. During surface operations, the rovers navigate autonomously using stereo vision for local terrain mapping and a local, reactive planning algorithm called Grid-based Estimation of Surface Traversability Applied to Local Terrain (GESTALT) for obstacle avoidance. ]n areas of high slip, stereo vision-based visual odometry has been used to estimate rover motion, As of mid-June, Spirit had traversed 3405 m, of which 1253 m were done autonomously; Opportunity had traversed 1264 m, of which 224 m were autonomous. These results have contributed substantially to the success of the mission and paved the way for increased levels of autonomy in future missions.

  1. Planning Mars Memory: Learning from the Mer Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Linde, Charlotte

    2004-01-01

    Knowledge management for space exploration is part of a multi-generational effort at recognizing, preserving and transmitting learning. Each mission should be built on the learning, of both successes and failures, derived from previous missions. Knowledge management begins with learning, and the recognition that this learning has produced knowledge. The Mars Exploration Rover mission provides us with an opportunity to track how learning occurs, how it is recorded, and whether the representations of this learning will be optimally useful for subsequent missions. This paper focuses on the MER science and engineering teams during Rover operations. A NASA team conducted an observational study of the ongoing work and learning of the these teams. Learning occurred in a wide variety of areas: how to run two teams on Mars time for three months; how to use the instruments within the constraints of the martian environment, the deep space network and the mission requirements; how to plan science strategy; how best to use the available software tools. This learning is preserved in many ways. Primarily it resides in peoples memories, to be carried on to the next mission. It is also encoded in stones, in programming sequences, in published reports, and in lessons learned activities, Studying learning and knowledge development as it happens allows us to suggest proactive ways of capturing and using it across multiple missions and generations.

  2. Nutrient availability at Mer Bleue bog measured by PRSTM probes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, M.; Moore, T. R.; Talbot, J.

    2015-12-01

    Bogs, covering ~0.7 million km2 in Canada, store a large amount of C and N. As nutrient deficient ecosystems, it's critical to examine the nutrient availabilities and seasonal dynamics. We used Plant Root Simulators (PRSTM) at Mer Bleue bog to provide some baseline data on nutrient availability and its variability. In particular, we focused on ammonium, nitrate, phosphate, calcium, magnesium and potassium, iron, sulphate and aluminum. We placed PRS probes at a depth of 5 - 15 cm in pristine plots and plots with long term N, P and K fertilization for 4 weeks and determined the availability of these nutrients, from spring through to fall. Probes were also placed beneath the water table in hummock and hollow microtopography and along a transect including part of the bog which had been drained through the creation of a ditch 80 years ago. The result showed that there was limited available ammonium, nitrate and phosphate in the bog, the seasonal variation of nutrient availabilities probably due to mineralization, an increase in the availability of some nutrients between different water table depths or as a result of drainage, and the relative availability of nutrients compared to the input from fertilization. We suggest that PRS probes could be a useful tool to examine nutrient availability and dynamics in wetlands, with careful consideration of installing condition, for example, proper exposure period, depth relative to water table etc.

  3. Travel implications of emerging coronaviruses: SARS and MERS-CoV.

    PubMed

    Al-Tawfiq, Jaffar A; Zumla, Alimuddin; Memish, Ziad A

    2014-01-01

    The emergence of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and of the Middle East Syndrome Cornavirus (MERS-CoV) caused widespread fear and concern for their potential threat to global health security. There are similarities and differences in the epidemiology and clinical features between these two diseases. The origin of SARS-COV and MERS-CoV is thought to be an animal source with subsequent transmission to humans. The identification of both the intermediate host and the exact route of transmission of MERS-CoV is crucial for the subsequent prevention of the introduction of the virus into the human population. So far MERS-CoV had resulted in a limited travel-associated human cases with no major events related to the Hajj. PMID:25047726

  4. China upgrades surveillance and control measures of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).

    PubMed

    Gao, Jianjun; Song, Peipei

    2015-06-01

    Three years after the identification of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in Saudi Arabia, the first case of MERS in China was reported on May 29, 2015. Although the Chinese government issued the MERS Prevention and Control Plan in 2013, a novel edition was released on June 5, 2015 to better cope with the current epidemic situation. The revised Plan refines the descriptions in case-finding and establishment of case-monitoring systems. In addition, tougher regulations on close contacts of confirmed patients and suspected cases are introduced in this new Plan. It is expected these countermeasures will play a greater role in surveilling and controlling MERS in China. PMID:26063202

  5. Lessons to learn from MERS-CoV outbreak in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Khan, Adnan; Farooqui, Amber; Guan, Yi; Kelvin, David J

    2015-06-01

    Since the first identification of Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012 the virus has infected 1289 humans with approximately 40% mortalities. Currently South Korea is experiencing the hospital-associated outbreak of MER-CoV that has infected 126 human cases and 13 deaths, as of 12 June 2015, following the return of a MERS infected patient from Middle East. The episode is characterized unique being the largest cluster of patients linked to the single introduction of virus that involves three generations of virus transmission. Human-to-human transmission though was observed on several occasions in past, it is documented as non-sustainable event. The recent outbreak including the healthcare workers, index case's roommates and their caregivers, raises several concerns about the infection control practices and timely diagnosis of MERS. PMID:26142661

  6. UNC2025, a Potent and Orally Bioavailable MER/FLT3 Dual Inhibitor

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    We previously reported a potent small molecule Mer tyrosine kinase inhibitor UNC1062. However, its poor PK properties prevented further assessment in vivo. We report here the sequential modification of UNC1062 to address DMPK properties and yield a new potent and highly orally bioavailable Mer inhibitor, 11, capable of inhibiting Mer phosphorylation in vivo, following oral dosing as demonstrated by pharmaco-dynamic (PD) studies examining phospho-Mer in leukemic blasts from mouse bone marrow. Kinome profiling versus more than 300 kinases in vitro and cellular selectivity assessments demonstrate that 11 has similar subnanomolar activity against Flt3, an additional important target in acute myelogenous leukemia (AML), with pharmacologically useful selectivity versus other kinases examined. PMID:25068800

  7. Health Care Associated Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS): A Case from Iran

    PubMed Central

    Moniri, Afshin; Marjani, Majid; Tabarsi, Payam; Yadegarynia, Davood

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) Infection, has caused recurrent outbreaks worldwide. It is associated with severe morbidity and mortality, and is not treatable with the currently available antiviral therapies. We present a case of a 43 year-old male healthcare provider, who admitted with productive cough, dyspnea, myalgia, pleuritic chest pain and fever. Computed tomography (CT) showed bilateral ground glass opacities and consolidation. Sputum polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for MERS-coronavirus was positive. PMID:27114729

  8. Human Infection with MERS Coronavirus after Exposure to Infected Camels, Saudi Arabia, 2013

    PubMed Central

    Memish, Ziad A.; Cotten, Matthew; Meyer, Benjamin; Watson, Simon J.; Alsahafi, Abdullah J.; Al Rabeeah, Abdullah A.; Corman, Victor Max; Sieberg, Andrea; Makhdoom, Hatem Q.; Assiri, Abdullah; Al Masri, Malaki; Aldabbagh, Souhaib; Bosch, Berend-Jan; Beer, Martin; Müller, Marcel A.; Kellam, Paul

    2014-01-01

    We investigated a case of human infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) after exposure to infected camels. Analysis of the whole human-derived virus and 15% of the camel-derived virus sequence yielded nucleotide polymorphism signatures suggestive of cross-species transmission. Camels may act as a direct source of human MERS-CoV infection. PMID:24857749

  9. Genetic analysis of transcriptional activation and repression in the Tn21 mer operon. [Bacteria

    SciTech Connect

    Ross, W.; Park, S.J.; Summers, A.O. )

    1989-07-01

    Transcription of the Tn21 mercury resistance operon (mer) is controlled by the toxic metal cation Hg(II). This control is mediated by the product of the merR gene, a 144-amino-acid protein which represses transcription of the structural genes (merTPCAD) in the absence of Hg(II) and activates transcription in the presence of Hg(II). We have used a mer-lac transcriptional fusion to obtain regulatory mutants in this metal-responsive system. Some mutants were defective in Hg(II)-induced activation while retaining repression function, others were defective in repression but not activation, and some had lost both functions. Mutations in three of the four cysteine residues of merR resulted in complete loss of Hg(II)-inducible activation but retention of the repressor function. Other lesions adjacent to or very near these cysteines exhibited severely reduced activation and also retained repressor function. There were two putative helix-turn-helix (HTH) domains in merR, and mutants in each had very different phenotypes. A partially dominant mutation in the more amino-terminal region of the two putative HTH regions resulted in loss of both activation and repression, consistent with a role for this region in DNA binding. Mutations in the more centrally located HTH region resulted only in loss of Hg(II)-induced activation. Lesions in the central and in the carboxy-terminal regions of merR exhibited both Hg(II)-independent and Hg(II)-dependent transcriptional activation. The sole cis-acting mutant obtained with this operon fusion strategy, a down-promoter mutation, lies in a highly conserved base in the -35 region of the merTPCAD promoter.

  10. A Truncated Receptor-Binding Domain of MERS-CoV Spike Protein Potently Inhibits MERS-CoV Infection and Induces Strong Neutralizing Antibody Responses: Implication for Developing Therapeutics and Vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Cuiqing; Tao, Xinrong; Wang, Lili; Zhao, Guangyu; Chen, Yaoqing; Yu, Fei; Tseng, Chien-Te K.; Zhou, Yusen; Jiang, Shibo

    2013-01-01

    An emerging respiratory infectious disease with high mortality, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), is caused by a novel coronavirus (MERS-CoV). It was first reported in 2012 in Saudi Arabia and has now spread to eight countries. Development of effective therapeutics and vaccines is crucial to save lives and halt the spread of MERS-CoV. Here, we show that a recombinant protein containing a 212-amino acid fragment (residues 377-588) in the truncated receptor-binding domain (RBD: residues 367–606) of MERS-CoV spike (S) protein fused with human IgG Fc fragment (S377-588-Fc) is highly expressed in the culture supernatant of transfected 293T cells. The purified S377-588-Fc protein efficiently binds to dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4), the receptor of MERS-CoV, and potently inhibited MERS-CoV infection, suggesting its potential to be further developed as a therapeutic modality for treating MERS-CoV infection and saving the patients’ lives. The recombinant S377-588-Fc is able to induce in the vaccinated mice strong MERS-CoV S-specific antibodies, which blocks the binding of RBD to DPP4 receptor and effectively neutralizes MERS-CoV infection. These findings indicate that this truncated RBD protein shows promise for further development as an effective and safe vaccine for the prevention of MERS-CoV infection. PMID:24324708

  11. Challenges presented by MERS corona virus, and SARS corona virus to global health.

    PubMed

    Al-Hazmi, Ali

    2016-07-01

    Numerous viral infections have arisen and affected global healthcare facilities. Millions of people are at severe risk of acquiring several evolving viral infections through several factors. In the present article we have described about risk factors, chance of infection, and prevention methods of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS-CoV), human coronaviruses (CoVs) frequently cause a normal cold which is mild and self-restricting. Zoonotic transmission of CoVs such as the newly discovered MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV, may be associated with severe lower respiratory tract infection. The present review provides the recent clinical and pathological information on MERS and SARS. The task is to transform these discoveries about MERS and SARS pathogenesis and to develop intervention methods that will eventually allow the effective control of these recently arising severe viral infections. Global health sector has learnt many lessons through the recent outbreak of MERS and SARS, but the need for identifying new antiviral treatment was not learned. In the present article we have reviewed the literature on the several facets like transmission, precautions and effectiveness of treatments used in patients with MERS-CoV and SARS infections. PMID:27298584

  12. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus "MERS-CoV": current knowledge gaps.

    PubMed

    Banik, G R; Khandaker, G; Rashid, H

    2015-06-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) that causes a severe lower respiratory tract infection in humans is now considered a pandemic threat to the Gulf region. Since its discovery in 2012, MERS-CoV has reached 23 countries affecting about 1100 people, including a dozen children, and claiming over 400 lives. Compared to SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), MERS-CoV appears to kill more people (40% versus 10%), more quickly, and is especially more severe in those with pre-existing medical conditions. Most MERS-CoV cases (>85%) reported thus far have a history of residence in, or travel to the Middle East. The current epidemiology is characterised by slow and sustained transmission with occasional sparks. The dromedary camel is the intermediate host of MERS-CoV, but the transmission cycle is not fully understood. In this current review, we have briefly summarised the latest information on the epidemiology, clinical features, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of MERS-CoV especially highlighting the knowledge gaps in its transmission dynamics, diagnosis and preventive strategy. PMID:26002405

  13. Prophylactic and postexposure efficacy of a potent human monoclonal antibody against MERS coronavirus

    PubMed Central

    Corti, Davide; Zhao, Jincun; Pedotti, Mattia; Simonelli, Luca; Agnihothram, Sudhakar; Fett, Craig; Fernandez-Rodriguez, Blanca; Foglierini, Mathilde; Agatic, Gloria; Vanzetta, Fabrizia; Gopal, Robin; Langrish, Christopher J.; Barrett, Nicholas A; Sallusto, Federica; Baric, Ralph S.; Varani, Luca; Zambon, Maria; Perlman, Stanley; Lanzavecchia, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a highly lethal pulmonary infection caused by a previously unidentified coronavirus (CoV), likely transmitted to humans by infected camels. There is no licensed vaccine or antiviral for MERS, therefore new prophylactic and therapeutic strategies to combat human infections are needed. In this study, we describe, for the first time, to our knowledge, the isolation of a potent MERS-CoV–neutralizing antibody from memory B cells of an infected individual. The antibody, named LCA60, binds to a novel site on the spike protein and potently neutralizes infection of multiple MERS-CoV isolates by interfering with the binding to the cellular receptor CD26. Importantly, using mice transduced with adenovirus expressing human CD26 and infected with MERS-CoV, we show that LCA60 can effectively protect in both prophylactic and postexposure settings. This antibody can be used for prophylaxis, for postexposure prophylaxis of individuals at risk, or for the treatment of human cases of MERS-CoV infection. The fact that it took only 4 mo from the initial screening of B cells derived from a convalescent patient for the development of a stable chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell line producing neutralizing antibodies at more than 5 g/L provides an example of a rapid pathway toward the generation of effective antiviral therapies against emerging viruses. PMID:26216974

  14. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV): prevention in travelers.

    PubMed

    Pavli, Androula; Tsiodras, Sotirios; Maltezou, Helena C

    2014-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), a novel coronavirus that causes a severe lower respiratory tract infection in humans, emerged in the Middle East in 2012. Since then, MERS-CoV has caused an ongoing epidemic in the Arabian Peninsula with sporadic cases imported in Europe, North Africa, Southeast Asia, and the United States of America. As of 28th May 2014, 636 laboratory-confirmed cases of infection with MERS-CoV have been reported to World Health Organization including 14 cases imported by travelers. The epicenter of the current MERS-CoV epidemic is located in Saudi Arabia, where millions of pilgrims travel for two mass gatherings annually. In this review we summarize MERS-CoV cases in relation to travel with focus on the epidemiology and prevention in travelers. It is important to increase awareness of travelers about the risks and appropriate preventive measures and for health professionals to be on alert if a patient with severe respiratory symptoms reports a recent history of travel to the region affected with MERS-CoV. Measures should be taken by local health authorities of the affected countries in order to improve hospital hygiene. Finally, it is crucial to investigate the reasons for travelers' poor compliance with rules and recommendations issued by Saudi officials and to take appropriate measures in order to improve them. PMID:25457301

  15. Mer receptor tyrosine kinase is a therapeutic target in pre–B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia

    PubMed Central

    Linger, Rachel M. A.; Lee-Sherick, Alisa B.; DeRyckere, Deborah; Cohen, Rebecca A.; Jacobsen, Kristen M.; McGranahan, Amy; Brandão, Luis N.; Winges, Amanda; Sawczyn, Kelly K.; Liang, Xiayuan; Keating, Amy K.; Tan, Aik Choon; Earp, H. Shelton

    2013-01-01

    Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is currently treated with an intense regimen of chemotherapy yielding cure rates near 85%. However, alterations to treatment strategies using available drugs are unlikely to provide significant improvement in survival or decrease therapy-associated toxicities. Here, we report ectopic expression of the Mer receptor tyrosine kinase in pre–B-cell ALL (B-ALL) cell lines and pediatric patient samples. Inhibition of Mer in B-ALL cell lines decreased activation of AKT and MAPKs and led to transcriptional changes, including decreased expression of antiapoptotic PRKCB gene and increase in proapoptotic BAX and BBC3 genes. Further, Mer inhibition promoted chemosensitization, decreased colony-forming potential in clonogenic assays, and delayed disease onset in a mouse xenograft model of leukemia. Our results identify Mer as a potential therapeutic target in B-ALL and suggest that inhibitors of Mer may potentiate lymphoblast killing when used in combination with chemotherapy. This strategy could reduce minimal residual disease and/or allow for chemotherapy dose reduction, thereby leading to improved event-free survival and reduced therapy-associated toxicity for patients with B-ALL. Additionally, Mer is aberrantly expressed in numerous other malignancies suggesting that this approach may have broad applications. PMID:23861246

  16. Mer receptor tyrosine kinase is a therapeutic target in pre-B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

    PubMed

    Linger, Rachel M A; Lee-Sherick, Alisa B; DeRyckere, Deborah; Cohen, Rebecca A; Jacobsen, Kristen M; McGranahan, Amy; Brandão, Luis N; Winges, Amanda; Sawczyn, Kelly K; Liang, Xiayuan; Keating, Amy K; Tan, Aik Choon; Earp, H Shelton; Graham, Douglas K

    2013-08-29

    Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is currently treated with an intense regimen of chemotherapy yielding cure rates near 85%. However, alterations to treatment strategies using available drugs are unlikely to provide significant improvement in survival or decrease therapy-associated toxicities. Here, we report ectopic expression of the Mer receptor tyrosine kinase in pre-B-cell ALL (B-ALL) cell lines and pediatric patient samples. Inhibition of Mer in B-ALL cell lines decreased activation of AKT and MAPKs and led to transcriptional changes, including decreased expression of antiapoptotic PRKCB gene and increase in proapoptotic BAX and BBC3 genes. Further, Mer inhibition promoted chemosensitization, decreased colony-forming potential in clonogenic assays, and delayed disease onset in a mouse xenograft model of leukemia. Our results identify Mer as a potential therapeutic target in B-ALL and suggest that inhibitors of Mer may potentiate lymphoblast killing when used in combination with chemotherapy. This strategy could reduce minimal residual disease and/or allow for chemotherapy dose reduction, thereby leading to improved event-free survival and reduced therapy-associated toxicity for patients with B-ALL. Additionally, Mer is aberrantly expressed in numerous other malignancies suggesting that this approach may have broad applications. PMID:23861246

  17. Mice lacking Axl and Mer tyrosine kinase receptors are susceptible to experimental autoimmune orchitis induction.

    PubMed

    Li, Nan; Liu, Zhenghui; Zhang, Yue; Chen, Qiaoyuan; Liu, Peng; Cheng, C Yan; Lee, Will M; Chen, Yongmei; Han, Daishu

    2015-03-01

    The mammalian testis is an immunoprivileged organ where male germ cell autoantigens are immunologically ignored. Both systemic immune tolerance to autoantigens and local immunosuppressive milieu contribute to the testicular immune privilege. Testicular immunosuppression has been intensively studied, but information on systemic immune tolerance to autoantigens is lacking. In the present study, we aimed to determine the role of Axl and Mer receptor tyrosine kinases in maintaining the systemic tolerance to male germ cell antigens using the experimental autoimmune orchitis (EAO) model. Axl and Mer double-knockout (Axl(-/-)Mer(-/-)) mice developed evident EAO after a single immunization with germ cell homogenates emulsified with complete Freund's adjuvant. EAO was characterized by the accumulation of macrophages and T lymphocytes in the testis. Damage to the seminiferous epithelium was also observed. EAO induction was associated with pro-inflammatory cytokine upregulation in the testes, impaired permeability of the blood-testis barrier and generation of autoantibodies against germ cell antigens in Axl(-/-)Mer(-/-) mice. Immunization also induced mild EAO in Axl or Mer single-gene-knockout mice. By contrast, a single immunization failed to induce EAO in wild-type mice. The results indicate that Axl and Mer receptors cooperatively regulate the systemic immune tolerance to male germ cell antigens. PMID:25403570

  18. Mer receptor tyrosine kinase mediates both tethering and phagocytosis of apoptotic cells

    PubMed Central

    Dransfield, I; Zagórska, A; Lew, E D; Michail, K; Lemke, G

    2015-01-01

    Billions of inflammatory leukocytes die and are phagocytically cleared each day. This regular renewal facilitates the normal termination of inflammatory responses, suppressing pro-inflammatory mediators and inducing their anti-inflammatory counterparts. Here we investigate the role of the receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) Mer and its ligands Protein S and Gas6 in the initial recognition and capture of apoptotic cells (ACs) by macrophages. We demonstrate extremely rapid binding kinetics of both ligands to phosphatidylserine (PtdSer)-displaying ACs, and show that ACs can be co-opsonized with multiple PtdSer opsonins. We further show that macrophage phagocytosis of ACs opsonized with Mer ligands can occur independently of a requirement for αV integrins. Finally, we demonstrate a novel role for Mer in the tethering of ACs to the macrophage surface, and show that Mer-mediated tethering and subsequent AC engulfment can be distinguished by their requirement for Mer kinase activity. Our results identify Mer as a receptor uniquely capable of both tethering ACs to the macrophage surface and driving their subsequent internalization. PMID:25695599

  19. Ligand-induced Dimerization of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) Coronavirus nsp5 Protease (3CLpro)

    PubMed Central

    Tomar, Sakshi; Johnston, Melanie L.; St. John, Sarah E.; Osswald, Heather L.; Nyalapatla, Prasanth R.; Paul, Lake N.; Ghosh, Arun K.; Denison, Mark R.; Mesecar, Andrew D.

    2015-01-01

    All coronaviruses, including the recently emerged Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) from the β-CoV subgroup, require the proteolytic activity of the nsp5 protease (also known as 3C-like protease, 3CLpro) during virus replication, making it a high value target for the development of anti-coronavirus therapeutics. Kinetic studies indicate that in contrast to 3CLpro from other β-CoV 2c members, including HKU4 and HKU5, MERS-CoV 3CLpro is less efficient at processing a peptide substrate due to MERS-CoV 3CLpro being a weakly associated dimer. Conversely, HKU4, HKU5, and SARS-CoV 3CLpro enzymes are tightly associated dimers. Analytical ultracentrifugation studies support that MERS-CoV 3CLpro is a weakly associated dimer (Kd ∼52 μm) with a slow off-rate. Peptidomimetic inhibitors of MERS-CoV 3CLpro were synthesized and utilized in analytical ultracentrifugation experiments and demonstrate that MERS-CoV 3CLpro undergoes significant ligand-induced dimerization. Kinetic studies also revealed that designed reversible inhibitors act as activators at a low compound concentration as a result of induced dimerization. Primary sequence comparisons and x-ray structural analyses of two MERS-CoV 3CLpro and inhibitor complexes, determined to 1.6 Å, reveal remarkable structural similarity of the dimer interface with 3CLpro from HKU4-CoV and HKU5-CoV. Despite this structural similarity, substantial differences in the dimerization ability suggest that long range interactions by the nonconserved amino acids distant from the dimer interface may control MERS-CoV 3CLpro dimerization. Activation of MERS-CoV 3CLpro through ligand-induced dimerization appears to be unique within the genogroup 2c and may potentially increase the complexity in the development of MERS-CoV 3CLpro inhibitors as antiviral agents. PMID:26055715

  20. Factors affecting antimicrobial activity of MUC7 12-mer, a human salivary mucin-derived peptide

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Guo-Xian; Campagna, Alexander N; Bobek, Libuse A

    2007-01-01

    Background MUC7 12-mer (RKSYKCLHKRCR), a cationic antimicrobial peptide derived from the human low-molecular-weight salivary mucin MUC7, possesses potent antimicrobial activity in vitro. In order to evaluate the potential therapeutic application of the MUC7 12-mer, we examined the effects of mono- and divalent cations, EDTA, pH, and temperature on its antimicrobial activity. Methods Minimal Inhibitory Concentrations (MICs) were determined using a liquid growth inhibition assay in 96-well microtiter plates. MUC7 12-mer was added at concentrations of 1.56–50 μM. MICs were determined at three endpoints: MIC-0, MIC-1, and MIC-2 (the lowest drug concentration showing 10%, 25% and 50% of growth, respectively). To examine the effect of salts or EDTA, a checkerboard microdilution technique was used. Fractional inhibitory concentration index (FICi) was calculated on the basis of MIC-0. The viability of microbial cells treated with MUC7 12-mer in the presence of sodium or potassium was also determined by killing assay or flow cytometry. Results The MICs of MUC7 12-mer against organisms tested ranged from 6.25–50 μM. For C. albicans, antagonism (FICi 4.5) was observed for the combination of MUC7 12-mer and calcium; however, there was synergism (FICi 0.22) between MUC7 12-mer and EDTA, and the synergism was retained in the presence of calcium at its physiological concentration (1–2 mM). No antagonism but additivity or indifference (FICi 0.55–2.5) was observed for the combination of MUC7 12-mer and each K+, Na+, Mg2+, or Zn2+. MUC7 12-mer peptide (at 25 μM) also exerted killing activity in the presence of NaCl, (up to 25 mM for C. albicans and up to 150 mM for E. coli, a physiological concentration of sodium in the oral cavity and serum, respectively) and retained candidacidal activity in the presence of KCl (up to 40 mM). The peptide exhibited higher inhibitory activity against C. albicans at pH 7, 8, and 9 than at pH 5 and 6, and temperature up to 60°C did not

  1. Membrane topology of a 14-mer model amphipathic peptide: a solid-state NMR spectroscopy study.

    PubMed

    Ouellet, Marise; Doucet, Jean-Daniel; Voyer, Normand; Auger, Michèle

    2007-06-01

    We have investigated the interaction between a synthetic amphipathic 14-mer peptide and model membranes by solid-state NMR. The 14-mer peptide is composed of leucines and phenylalanines modified by the addition of crown ethers and forms a helical amphipathic structure in solution and bound to lipid membranes. To shed light on its membrane topology, 31P, 2H, 15N solid-state NMR experiments have been performed on the 14-mer peptide in interaction with mechanically oriented bilayers of dilauroylphosphatidylcholine (DLPC), dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC), and dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC). The 31P, 2H, and 15N NMR results indicate that the 14-mer peptide remains at the surface of the DLPC, DMPC, and DPPC bilayers stacked between glass plates and perturbs the lipid orientation relative to the magnetic field direction. Its membrane topology is similar in DLPC and DMPC bilayers, whereas the peptide seems to be more deeply inserted in DPPC bilayers, as revealed by the greater orientational and motional disorder of the DPPC lipid headgroup and acyl chains. 15N{31P} rotational echo double resonance experiments have also been used to measure the intermolecular dipole-dipole interaction between the 14-mer peptide and the phospholipid headgroup of DMPC multilamellar vesicles, and the results indicate that the 14-mer peptide is in contact with the polar region of the DMPC lipids. On the basis of these studies, the mechanism of membrane perturbation of the 14-mer peptide is associated to the induction of a positive curvature strain induced by the peptide lying on the bilayer surface and seems to be independent of the bilayer hydrophobic thickness. PMID:17487978

  2. Biomolecular Mechanisms of Mercury Transfers and Transformations by Proteins of the Mer Operon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, S. M.; Hong, B.; Nauss, R.; Momany, C.; Summers, A. O.; Feng, X.; Harwood, I.; Stroud, R.

    2008-12-01

    Aerobic bacteria exhibiting resistance to the toxic effects of Hg(II) and organomercurials [RHg(I), e.g. MeHg(I)] and are widely found in both pristine and mercury contaminated environments. Resistance, afforded by a plasmid- or transposon-associated mer operon, involves an unusual pathway where Hg(II) and organomercurials [RHg(I)] undergo facilitated entry into the bacterial cytoplasm via an integral membrane transport protein (MerT) and are then "detoxified" by the concerted effort of two enzymes, organomercurial lyase (MerB), which catalyzes dealkylation (i.e., demethylation) of RHg(I) to Hg(II) and a hydrocarbon, and mercuric ion reductase (MerA), which catalyzes reduction of Hg(II) to Hg(0) as the ultimate detoxification for the organism. With a widespread distribution, these bacterial transformations play a significant role in the fate of mercury in the environment. Our focus is on elucidation of the molecular mechanisms for the transport and catalytic transformations of RHg(I) and Hg(II) by these proteins and the factors that influence the overall efficiency of the process. Current efforts are focused primarily on elucidating details of RHg(I) binding and dealkylation by MerB as well as the mechanism for transfer of the Hg(II) product to MerA. Key findings include the demonstration of a non-cysteine residue as essential for the catalytic activity and demonstration that direct transfer of Hg(II) to MerA proceeds more rapidly and more completely than transfer to small MW thiols such as cysteines or glutathione. Reuslts of these studies as well as an overview of our current understanding of the whole system will be presented.

  3. An orthopoxvirus-based vaccine reduces virus excretion after MERS-CoV infection in dromedary camels.

    PubMed

    Haagmans, Bart L; van den Brand, Judith M A; Raj, V Stalin; Volz, Asisa; Wohlsein, Peter; Smits, Saskia L; Schipper, Debby; Bestebroer, Theo M; Okba, Nisreen; Fux, Robert; Bensaid, Albert; Solanes Foz, David; Kuiken, Thijs; Baumgärtner, Wolfgang; Segalés, Joaquim; Sutter, Gerd; Osterhaus, Albert D M E

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infections have led to an ongoing outbreak in humans, which was fueled by multiple zoonotic MERS-CoV introductions from dromedary camels. In addition to the implementation of hygiene measures to limit further camel-to-human and human-to-human transmissions, vaccine-mediated reduction of MERS-CoV spread from the animal reservoir may be envisaged. Here we show that a modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) vaccine expressing the MERS-CoV spike protein confers mucosal immunity in dromedary camels. Compared with results for control animals, we observed a significant reduction of excreted infectious virus and viral RNA transcripts in vaccinated animals upon MERS-CoV challenge. Protection correlated with the presence of serum neutralizing antibodies to MERS-CoV. Induction of MVA-specific antibodies that cross-neutralize camelpox virus would also provide protection against camelpox. PMID:26678878

  4. Rare k-mer DNA: Identification of sequence motifs and prediction of CpG island and promoter.

    PubMed

    Mohamed Hashim, Ezzeddin Kamil; Abdullah, Rosni

    2015-12-21

    Empirical analysis on k-mer DNA has been proven as an effective tool in finding unique patterns in DNA sequences which can lead to the discovery of potential sequence motifs. In an extensive study of empirical k-mer DNA on hundreds of organisms, the researchers found unique multi-modal k-mer spectra occur in the genomes of organisms from the tetrapod clade only which includes all mammals. The multi-modality is caused by the formation of the two lowest modes where k-mers under them are referred as the rare k-mers. The suppression of the two lowest modes (or the rare k-mers) can be attributed to the CG dinucleotide inclusions in them. Apart from that, the rare k-mers are selectively distributed in certain genomic features of CpG Island (CGI), promoter, 5' UTR, and exon. We correlated the rare k-mers with hundreds of annotated features using several bioinformatic tools, performed further intrinsic rare k-mer analyses within the correlated features, and modeled the elucidated rare k-mer clustering feature into a classifier to predict the correlated CGI and promoter features. Our correlation results show that rare k-mers are highly associated with several annotated features of CGI, promoter, 5' UTR, and open chromatin regions. Our intrinsic results show that rare k-mers have several unique topological, compositional, and clustering properties in CGI and promoter features. Finally, the performances of our RWC (rare-word clustering) method in predicting the CGI and promoter features are ranked among the top three, in eight of the CGI and promoter evaluations, among eight of the benchmarked datasets. PMID:26427337

  5. Comparison of De Novo Transcriptome Assemblers and k-mer Strategies Using the Killifish, Fundulus heteroclitus

    PubMed Central

    Rana, Satshil B.; Zadlock, Frank J.; Zhang, Ziping; Murphy, Wyatt R.; Bentivegna, Carolyn S.

    2016-01-01

    Background De novo assembly of non-model organism’s transcriptomes has recently been on the rise in concert with the number of de novo transcriptome assembly software programs. There is a knowledge gap as to what assembler software or k-mer strategy is best for construction of an optimal de novo assembly. Additionally, there is a lack of consensus on which evaluation metrics should be used to assess the quality of de novo transcriptome assemblies. Result Six different assembly strategies were evaluated from four different assemblers. The Trinity assembly was used in its default 25 single k-mer value while Bridger, Oases, and SOAPdenovo-Trans were performed with multiple k-mer strategies. Bridger, Oases, and SOAPdenovo-Trans used a small multiple k-mer (SMK) strategy consisting of the k-mer lengths of 21, 25, 27, 29, 31, and 33. Additionally, Oases and SOAPdenovo-Trans were performed using a large multiple k-mer (LMK) strategy consisting of k-mer lengths of 25, 35, 45, 55, 65, 75, and 85. Eleven metrics were used to evaluate each assembly strategy including three genome related evaluation metrics (contig number, N50 length, Contigs >1 kb, reads) and eight transcriptome evaluation metrics (mapped back to transcripts (RMBT), number of full length transcripts, number of open reading frames, Detonate RSEM-EVAL score, and percent alignment to the southern platyfish, Amazon molly, BUSCO and CEGMA databases). The assembly strategy that performed the best, that is it was within the top three of each evaluation metric, was the Bridger assembly (10 of 11) followed by the Oases SMK assembly (8 of 11), the Oases LMK assembly (6 of 11), the Trinity assembly (4 of 11), the SOAP LMK assembly (4 of 11), and the SOAP SMK assembly (3 of 11). Conclusion This study provides an in-depth multi k-mer strategy investigation concluding that the assembler itself had a greater impact than k-mer size regardless of the strategy employed. Additionally, the comprehensive performance

  6. Infection with MERS-CoV Causes Lethal Pneumonia in the Common Marmoset

    PubMed Central

    Feldmann, Friederike; Rasmussen, Angela L.; Okumura, Atsushi; Peng, Xinxia; Thomas, Matthew J.; van Doremalen, Neeltje; Haddock, Elaine; Nagy, Lee; LaCasse, Rachel; Liu, Tingting; Zhu, Jiang; McLellan, Jason S.; Scott, Dana P.; Katze, Michael G.; Feldmann, Heinz; Munster, Vincent J.

    2014-01-01

    The availability of a robust disease model is essential for the development of countermeasures for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). While a rhesus macaque model of MERS-CoV has been established, the lack of uniform, severe disease in this model complicates the analysis of countermeasure studies. Modeling of the interaction between the MERS-CoV spike glycoprotein and its receptor dipeptidyl peptidase 4 predicted comparable interaction energies in common marmosets and humans. The suitability of the marmoset as a MERS-CoV model was tested by inoculation via combined intratracheal, intranasal, oral and ocular routes. Most of the marmosets developed a progressive severe pneumonia leading to euthanasia of some animals. Extensive lesions were evident in the lungs of all animals necropsied at different time points post inoculation. Some animals were also viremic; high viral loads were detected in the lungs of all infected animals, and total RNAseq demonstrated the induction of immune and inflammatory pathways. This is the first description of a severe, partially lethal, disease model of MERS-CoV, and as such will have a major impact on the ability to assess the efficacy of vaccines and treatment strategies as well as allowing more detailed pathogenesis studies. PMID:25144235

  7. The mercury resistance (mer) operon in a marine gliding flavobacterium, Tenacibaculum discolor 9A5.

    PubMed

    Allen, Rachel C; Tu, Yen-Kuei; Nevarez, Michael J; Bobbs, Alexander S; Friesen, Joseph W; Lorsch, Jon R; McCauley, John A; Voet, Judith G; Hamlett, Nancy V

    2013-01-01

    Genes conferring mercury resistance have been investigated in a variety of bacteria and archaea but not in bacteria of the phylum Bacteroidetes, despite their importance in many environments. We found, however, that a marine gliding Bacteroidetes species, Tenacibaculum discolor, was the predominant mercury-resistant bacterial taxon cultured from a salt marsh fertilized with mercury-contaminated sewage sludge. Here we report characterization of the mercuric reductase and the narrow-spectrum mercury resistance (mer) operon from one of these strains - T. discolor 9A5. This mer operon, which confers mercury resistance when cloned into Flavobacterium johnsoniae, encodes a novel mercury-responsive ArsR/SmtB family transcriptional regulator that appears to have evolved independently from other mercury-responsive regulators, a novel putative transport protein consisting of a fusion between the integral membrane Hg(II) transporter MerT and the periplasmic Hg(II)-binding protein MerP, an additional MerP protein, and a mercuric reductase that is phylogenetically distinct from other known mercuric reductases. PMID:22816663

  8. MERS-CoV papain-like protease has deISGylating and deubiquitinating activities

    PubMed Central

    Mielech, Anna M.; Kilianski, Andy; Baez-Santos, Yahira M.; Mesecar, Andrew D.; Baker, Susan C.

    2014-01-01

    Coronaviruses encode papain-like proteases (PLpro) that are often multifunctional enzymes with protease activity to process the viral replicase polyprotein and deubiquitinating (DUB)/deISGylating activity, which is hypothesized to modify the innate immune response to infection. Here, we investigate the predicted DUB activity of the PLpro domain of the recently described Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). We found that expression of MERS-CoV PLpro reduces the levels of ubiquitinated and ISGylated host cell proteins; consistent with multifunctional PLpro activity. Further, we compared the ability of MERS-CoV PLpro and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) PLpro to block innate immune signaling of proinflammatory cytokines. We show that expression of SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV PLpros blocks upregulation of cytokines CCL5, IFN-β and CXCL10 in stimulated cells. Overall these results indicate that the PLpro domains of MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV have the potential to modify the innate immune response to viral infection and contribute to viral pathogenesis. PMID:24503068

  9. Design and Performance of the MER (Mars Exploration Rovers) Solar Arrays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stella, Paul M.; Ewell, Richard C.; Hoskin, Julie J.

    2005-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) program posed a significant engineering and technology challenge. Now that the Rovers have operated beyond their original design life of three months by nearly a factor of four it is clear that the challenge was met and far exceeded. A key to the success of MER has been the enhanced power provided by the cruise and Rover solar arrays. Benefiting from a nearly 50% improvement in cell efficiency compared to the single junction GaAs cells used on Pathfinder, the MER designs were subject to many constraints both in design and in operation. These constraints included limited available panel area, changing illumination levels and temperatures, and variable shadowing, atmospheric conditions and dust accumulation for the rovers. This paper will discuss those constraints and their impact on the design. In addition, flight data will be provided to assess the performance achieved during the mission.

  10. Preventing healthcare-associated transmission of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS): Our Achilles heel.

    PubMed

    Balkhy, Hanan H; Perl, Trish M; Arabi, Yaseen M

    2016-01-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus is the most recent among the Coronaviridae family to jump species and infect humans. Major healthcare associated MERS outbreaks have occurred in the Middle East and Korea that affected both patients and healthcare workers. These outbreaks were characterized by intra and inter-hospital spread and were exacerbated specifically by overcrowding, delayed diagnosis and appropriate use of personal protective equipment. Recent experience with this virus emphasizes the importance of compliance with infection control practices and with other interventions addressing patient triage, placement and flow within and between healthcare facilities. Our Achilles heel remains compliance with the best infection prevention practices and their harmonization with patient flow. Both infection prevention compliance and maintenance of patient flow are critical in preventing healthcare-associated transmission of many of these emerging infectious diseases, including MERS. PMID:27158023

  11. MERS-CoV vaccine candidates in development: The current landscape.

    PubMed

    Modjarrad, Kayvon

    2016-06-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), an emerging infectious disease of growing global importance, has caused severe acute respiratory disease in more than 1600 people, resulting in more than 600 deaths. The high case fatality rate, growing geographic distribution and vaguely defined epidemiology of MERS-CoV have created an urgent need for effective public health countermeasures, paramount of which is an effective means of prevention through a vaccine or antibody prophylaxis. Despite the relatively few number of cases to-date, research and development of MERS-CoV vaccine candidates is advancing quickly. This review surveys the landscape of these efforts across multiple groups in academia, government and industry. PMID:27083424

  12. Dynamical transmission model of MERS-CoV in two areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yong, Benny; Owen, Livia

    2016-02-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a disease first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and it can be transmitted from human to human. This disease has spread to several other countries, most confirmed cases have displayed symptoms of severe acute respiratory illness and many of these patients have died. This research is aimed to construct a mathematical model for the transmission of MERS-CoV in two areas by separating the human population into two groups; susceptible and infectious groups. The dynamics of the disease is studied by a compartmental model involving ordinary differrential equations. The basic reproductive number of this disease is discussed to control the outbreak of this disease. Sensitivity analysis of this model is performed to determine the relative importance of the model parameters to the MERS-CoV transmission.

  13. Simrank: Rapid and sensitive general-purpose k-mer search tool

    SciTech Connect

    DeSantis, T.Z.; Keller, K.; Karaoz, U.; Alekseyenko, A.V; Singh, N.N.S.; Brodie, E.L; Pei, Z.; Andersen, G.L; Larsen, N.

    2011-04-01

    Terabyte-scale collections of string-encoded data are expected from consortia efforts such as the Human Microbiome Project (http://nihroadmap.nih.gov/hmp). Intra- and inter-project data similarity searches are enabled by rapid k-mer matching strategies. Software applications for sequence database partitioning, guide tree estimation, molecular classification and alignment acceleration have benefited from embedded k-mer searches as sub-routines. However, a rapid, general-purpose, open-source, flexible, stand-alone k-mer tool has not been available. Here we present a stand-alone utility, Simrank, which allows users to rapidly identify database strings the most similar to query strings. Performance testing of Simrank and related tools against DNA, RNA, protein and human-languages found Simrank 10X to 928X faster depending on the dataset. Simrank provides molecular ecologists with a high-throughput, open source choice for comparing large sequence sets to find similarity.

  14. Value, market preferences and trade of Beche-de-mer from Pacific Island sea cucumbers.

    PubMed

    Purcell, Steven W

    2014-01-01

    Market preferences of natural resources contribute to shape their exploitation and production. Beche-de-mer, the product after gutting, cooking, salting and drying sea cucumbers, is exported worldwide to Asian dried seafood markets. A better understanding of the trade, value and market preferences of Pacific island beche-de-mer could identify critical postharvest processing techniques and management strategies for fisheries and aquaculture. Data were collected on export prices and trade of beche-de-mer from Kiribati, Fiji, Tonga and New Caledonia, and the selling prices, respective sizes and organoleptic properties of the products in stores in China. Export prices varied considerably within and among the four countries and low-value species were the most exported by volume. Most of the beche-de-mer from the four Pacific islands is exported to Hong Kong, where quality products are sold and others are distributed to mainland China. Prices of the beche-de-mer in Chinese stores varied up to ten-fold and were mostly influenced by species, body size and, to a lesser extent, physical damage to the products. Market prices across species (averaging US$15-385 kg-1) appear to have mostly increased six- to twelve-fold over the past decade. The data allude that fisheries for Holothuria scabra, H. lessoni, H. fuscogilva, H. whitmaei and Thelenota ananas should be most carefully managed because they were the highest-value species and under greatest demand. The relationships between size of beche-de-mer and sale price were species specific and highly varied. This study also highlights the need for better regulations and/or enforcement of minimum size limits in sea cucumber fisheries, which can help to maximise economic benefits of wild stocks. PMID:24736374

  15. Compact representation of k-mer de Bruijn graphs for genome read assembly

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Processing of reads from high throughput sequencing is often done in terms of edges in the de Bruijn graph representing all k-mers from the reads. The memory requirements for storing all k-mers in a lookup table can be demanding, even after removal of read errors, but can be alleviated by using a memory efficient data structure. Results The FM-index, which is based on the Burrows–Wheeler transform, provides an efficient data structure providing a searchable index of all substrings from a set of strings, and is used to compactly represent full genomes for use in mapping reads to a genome: the memory required to store this is in the same order of magnitude as the strings themselves. However, reads from high throughput sequences mostly have high coverage and so contain the same substrings multiple times from different reads. I here present a modification of the FM-index, which I call the kFM-index, for indexing the set of k-mers from the reads. For DNA sequences, this requires 5 bit of information for each vertex of the corresponding de Bruijn subgraph, i.e. for each different k−1-mer, plus some additional overhead, typically 0.5 to 1 bit per vertex, for storing the equivalent of the FM-index for walking the underlying de Bruijn graph and reproducing the actual k-mers efficiently. Conclusions The kFM-index could replace more memory demanding data structures for storing the de Bruijn k-mer graph representation of sequence reads. A Java implementation with additional technical documentation is provided which demonstrates the applicability of the data structure (http://folk.uio.no/einarro/Projects/KFM-index/). PMID:24152242

  16. Healthcare Workers Emotions, Perceived Stressors and Coping Strategies During a MERS-CoV Outbreak

    PubMed Central

    Khalid, Imran; Khalid, Tabindeh J.; Qabajah, Mohammed R.; Barnard, Aletta G.; Qushmaq, Ismael A.

    2016-01-01

    Objective Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at high risk of contracting Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) during an epidemic. We explored the emotions, perceived stressors, and coping strategies of healthcare workers who worked during a MERS-CoV outbreak in our hospital. Design A cross-sectional descriptive survey design. Setting A tertiary care hospital. Participants HCWs (150) who worked in high risk areas during the April–May 2014 MERS-CoV outbreak that occurred in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Methods We developed and administered a “MERS-CoV staff questionnaire” to study participants. The questionnaire consisted of 5 sections with 72 questions. The sections evaluated hospital staffs emotions, perceived stressors, factors that reduced their stress, coping strategies, and motivators to work during future outbreaks. Responses were scored on a scale from 0–3. The varying levels of stress or effectiveness of measures were reported as mean and standard deviation, as appropriate. Results Completed questionnaires were returned by 117 (78%) of the participants. The results had many unique elements. HCWs ethical obligation to their profession pushed them to continue with their jobs. The main sentiments centered upon fear of personal safety and well-being of colleagues and family. Positive attitudes in the workplace, clinical improvement of infected colleagues, and stoppage of disease transmission among HCWs after adopting strict protective measures alleviated their fear and drove them through the epidemic. They appreciated recognition of their efforts by hospital management and expected similar acknowledgment, infection control guidance, and equipment would entice them to work during future epidemics. Conclusion The MERS-CoV outbreak was a distressing time for our staff. Hospitals can enhance HCWs experiences during any future MERS-CoV outbreak by focusing on the above mentioned aspects. PMID:26847480

  17. Value, Market Preferences and Trade of Beche-De-Mer from Pacific Island Sea Cucumbers

    PubMed Central

    Purcell, Steven W.

    2014-01-01

    Market preferences of natural resources contribute to shape their exploitation and production. Beche-de-mer, the product after gutting, cooking, salting and drying sea cucumbers, is exported worldwide to Asian dried seafood markets. A better understanding of the trade, value and market preferences of Pacific island beche-de-mer could identify critical postharvest processing techniques and management strategies for fisheries and aquaculture. Data were collected on export prices and trade of beche-de-mer from Kiribati, Fiji, Tonga and New Caledonia, and the selling prices, respective sizes and organoleptic properties of the products in stores in China. Export prices varied considerably within and among the four countries and low-value species were the most exported by volume. Most of the beche-de-mer from the four Pacific islands is exported to Hong Kong, where quality products are sold and others are distributed to mainland China. Prices of the beche-de-mer in Chinese stores varied up to ten-fold and were mostly influenced by species, body size and, to a lesser extent, physical damage to the products. Market prices across species (averaging US$15–385 kg−1) appear to have mostly increased six- to twelve-fold over the past decade. The data allude that fisheries for Holothuria scabra, H. lessoni, H. fuscogilva, H. whitmaei and Thelenota ananas should be most carefully managed because they were the highest-value species and under greatest demand. The relationships between size of beche-de-mer and sale price were species specific and highly varied. This study also highlights the need for better regulations and/or enforcement of minimum size limits in sea cucumber fisheries, which can help to maximise economic benefits of wild stocks. PMID:24736374

  18. External Quality Assessment of MERS-CoV Molecular Diagnostics During the 2015 Korean Outbreak

    PubMed Central

    Seong, Moon-Woo; Lee, Seung Jun; Cho, Sung Im; Ko, Kyungphil; Kim, Mi-Na; Sung, Heungsub; Kim, Jae-Seok; Ahn, Ji Soo; Yu, Byung Su; Kim, Taek Soo; Kim, Eui Chong

    2016-01-01

    Background The largest outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection outside Middle East Asia in 2015 has necessitated the rapid expansion of laboratories that conduct MERS-CoV molecular testing in Korea, together with external quality assessment (EQA) to evaluate the assays used. Methods The EQA program consisted of two phases; self-validation and blind assessment. For the first EQA phase, in vitro transcribed upstream region of the envelope gene (upE) and the open reading frame (ORF)1a RNAs were used at a concentration of 1,000 copies/µL. The test panel for the second EQA phase consisted of RNA extracts from three samples, which were obtained from two MERS-CoV positive patients and one MERS-CoV negative patient. Results The first EQA phase results for 46 participants showed a linear relationship between the threshold cycle (CT) values of RNA materials and the logarithmic concentrations for both upE and ORF1a gene targets (R2=0.73 and 0.75, respectively). The mean CT value for each concentration was different depending on which commercial kit was used for the assay. Among the three commonly used kits, PowerChek MERS Real-Time PCR kit (KogeneBiotech, Korea) showed the lowest CT values at all concentrations of upE and most concentrations of ORF1a. The second EQA phase results for 47 participants were 100% correct for all tested samples. Conclusions This EQA survey demonstrates that the MERS-CoV molecular testing performed in Korea during the 2015 outbreak is of robust capability. However, careful establishment and validation of a cut-off value are recommended to ensure good analytical sensitivity. PMID:26915611

  19. Local Surface Reconstruction from MER images using Stereo Workstation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shin, Dongjoe; Muller, Jan-Peter

    2010-05-01

    The authors present a semi-automatic workflow that reconstructs the 3D shape of the martian surface from local stereo images delivered by PnCam or NavCam on systems such as the NASA Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Mission and in the future the ESA-NASA ExoMars rover PanCam. The process is initiated with manually selected tiepoints on a stereo workstation which is then followed by a tiepoint refinement, stereo-matching using region growing and Levenberg-Marquardt Algorithm (LMA)-based bundle adjustment processing. The stereo workstation, which is being developed by UCL in collaboration with colleagues at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) within the EU FP7 ProVisG project, includes a set of practical GUI-based tools that enable an operator to define a visually correct tiepoint via a stereo display. To achieve platform and graphic hardware independence, the stereo application has been implemented using JPL's JADIS graphic library which is written in JAVA and the remaining processing blocks used in the reconstruction workflow have also been developed as a JAVA package to increase the code re-usability, portability and compatibility. Although initial tiepoints from the stereo workstation are reasonably acceptable as true correspondences, it is often required to employ an optional validity check and/or quality enhancing process. To meet this requirement, the workflow has been designed to include a tiepoint refinement process based on the Adaptive Least Square Correlation (ALSC) matching algorithm so that the initial tiepoints can be further enhanced to sub-pixel precision or rejected if they fail to pass the ALSC matching threshold. Apart from the accuracy of reconstruction, it is obvious that the other criterion to assess the quality of reconstruction is the density (or completeness) of reconstruction, which is not attained in the refinement process. Thus, we re-implemented a stereo region growing process, which is a core matching algorithm within the UCL

  20. The MER Mossbauer Spectrometers: 40 Months of Operation on the Martian Surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleischer, Iris; Rodionov, D.; Schroeder, C.; Morris, R.; Yen, A.; Ming, D.; McCoy, T.; Mittlefehldt, D.; Gellert, R.; Cohen, B.; Schmidt, M.; Klingelhoefer, Goestar

    2007-01-01

    The primary MER objectives have been successfully completed. The total integration time of all MB measurements exceeds the duration of the primary 90-sols-mission for Spirit's MB spectrometer, and approaches this value for Opportunity's MB spectrometer. Both MB spectrometers continue to accumulate valuable scientific data after three years of operation (data is available for download [13]) The identification of aqueous minerals such as goethite in Gusev crater and jarosite at Meridiani Planum by the MER Mossbauer spectrometers is strong evidence for past water activity at the two landing sites.

  1. Interleukin 17 Regulates Mer Tyrosine Kinase–Positive Cells in Pseudomonas aeruginosa Keratitis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Cui; McClellan, Sharon A.; Barrett, Ronald; Hazlett, Linda D.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To determine if IL-17 regulates Mer tyrosine kinase–positive (MerTK+) cells in Pseudomonas aeruginosa keratitis. Methods. Interleukin 17 was tested in normal and infected cornea of susceptible C57BL/6 and resistant BALB/c mice. The latter were treated with recombinant mouse (rm) IL-17; both groups were treated with IL-17 neutralizing antibody. Mice were infected, and clinical score, PCR, ELISA, and myeloperoxidase (MPO) assays tested expression of proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory mediators and polymorphonuclear neutrophilic leukocyte (PMN) infiltrate. Fas and Fas ligand (FasL) protein levels were assessed in both mouse strains, while MerTK+ cells were examined by immunostaining and cell sorting before and after IL-17 neutralization. Results. The IL-17 mRNA and protein were higher in C57BL/6 versus BALB/c cornea after infection. The rmIL-17 treatment of BALB/c mice modified proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory mediators, but clinical score and MPO assay revealed no differences. However, only BALB/c mice treated with IL-17 neutralizing antibody showed increased disease, macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP) 2, and MPO levels. Fas and FasL protein levels, elevated earlier in BALB/c versus C57BL/6 mice, correlated with significantly more MerTK+ cells in BALB/c cornea at 3 days after infection. Neutralization of IL-17 in C57BL/6 mice elevated MerTK+ cells, while similar treatment of BALB/c mice significantly decreased them. Conclusions. These data provide evidence that IL-17 expression is higher in C57BL/6 versus BALB/c cornea after infection and that the latter group has more MerTK+ cells. Exogenous rmIL-17 failed to shift the disease response in resistant mice, but its neutralization resulted in worsened disease and reduced MerTK+ cells. Neutralization of IL-17 in C57BL/6 mice increased MerTK+ cells but did not dramatically shift the disease response. PMID:25298414

  2. Crystal Structures of the Organomercurial Lyase MerB in Its Free and Mercury-Bound Forms

    SciTech Connect

    Lafrance-Vanasse, J.; Lefebvre, M; Di Lello, P; Sygusch, J; Omichinski, J

    2009-01-01

    Bacteria resistant to methylmercury utilize two enzymes (MerA and MerB) to degrade methylmercury to the less toxic elemental mercury. The crucial step is the cleavage of the carbon-mercury bond of methylmercury by the organomercurial lyase (MerB). In this study, we determined high resolution crystal structures of MerB in both the free (1.76-{angstrom} resolution) and mercury-bound (1.64-{angstrom} resolution) states. The crystal structure of free MerB is very similar to theNMRstructure, but important differences are observed when comparing the two structures. In the crystal structure, an amino-terminal-helix that is not present in the NMR structure makes contact with the core region adjacent to the catalytic site. This interaction between the amino-terminal helix and the core serves to bury the active site of MerB. The crystal structures also provide detailed insights into the mechanism of carbon-mercury bond cleavage by MerB. The structures demonstrate that two conserved cysteines (Cys-96 and Cys-159) play a role in substrate binding, carbon-mercury bond cleavage, and controlled product (ionic mercury) release. In addition, the structures establish that an aspartic acid (Asp-99) in the active site plays a crucial role in the proton transfer step required for the cleavage of the carbon-mercury bond. These findings are an important step in understanding the mechanism of carbon-mercury bond cleavage by MerB.

  3. 77 FR 49059 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel CHAT DE MER; Invitation for...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-15

    ... published on April 11, 2000 (65 FR 19477-78). By Order of the Maritime Administrator. Dated: August 9, 2012... Maritime Administration Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel CHAT DE MER... of the vessel CHAT DE MER is: Intended Commercial Use of Vessel: Primarily carrying passengers...

  4. Co-circulation of three camel coronavirus species and recombination of MERS-CoVs in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Sabir, Jamal S M; Lam, Tommy T-Y; Ahmed, Mohamed M M; Li, Lifeng; Shen, Yongyi; Abo-Aba, Salah E M; Qureshi, Muhammd I; Abu-Zeid, Mohamed; Zhang, Yu; Khiyami, Mohammad A; Alharbi, Njud S; Hajrah, Nahid H; Sabir, Meshaal J; Mutwakil, Mohammed H Z; Kabli, Saleh A; Alsulaimany, Faten A S; Obaid, Abdullah Y; Zhou, Boping; Smith, David K; Holmes, Edward C; Zhu, Huachen; Guan, Yi

    2016-01-01

    Outbreaks of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) raise questions about the prevalence and evolution of the MERS coronavirus (CoV) in its animal reservoir. Our surveillance in Saudi Arabia in 2014 and 2015 showed that viruses of the MERS-CoV species and a human CoV 229E-related lineage co-circulated at high prevalence, with frequent co-infections in the upper respiratory tract of dromedary camels. viruses of the betacoronavirus 1 species, we found that dromedary camels share three CoV species with humans. Several MERS-CoV lineages were present in camels, including a recombinant lineage that has been dominant since December 2014 and that subsequently led to the human outbreaks in 2015. Camels therefore serve as an important reservoir for the maintenance and diversification of the MERS-CoVs and are the source of human infections with this virus. PMID:26678874

  5. merA gene expression in aquatic environments measured by mRNA production and Hg(II) volatilization.

    PubMed Central

    Nazaret, S; Jeffrey, W H; Saouter, E; Von Haven, R; Barkay, T

    1994-01-01

    The relationship of merA gene expression (specifying the enzyme mercuric reductase) to mercury volatilization in aquatic microbial communities was investigated with samples collected at a mercury-contaminated freshwater pond, Reality Lake, in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Levels of merA mRNA transcripts and the rate of inorganic mercury [Hg(II)] volatilization were related to the concentration of mercury in the water and to heterotrophic activity in field samples and laboratory incubations of pond water in which microbial heterotrophic activity and Hg(II) concentration were manipulated. Levels of merA-specific mRNA and Hg(II) volatilization were influenced more by microbial metabolic activity than by the concentration of mercury. merA-specific transcripts were detected in some samples which did not reduce Hg(II), suggesting that rates of mercury volatilization in environmental samples may not always be proportional to merA expression. PMID:7527625

  6. Geology of a Proposed MER Landing Site in Western Melas Chasma

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weitz, C. M.; Parker, T. J.; Anderson, F. S.; Grant, J. A.

    2002-01-01

    A proposed landing site for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) has been identified in western Melas Chasma. The landing ellipse contains a blocky, bright deposit which we propose formed as a landslide, perhaps beneath a former lake. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  7. Clinically mild encephalitis with a reversible splenial lesion (MERS) after mumps vaccination.

    PubMed

    Takanashi, Jun-Ichi; Shiihara, Takashi; Hasegawa, Takeshi; Takayanagi, Masaru; Hara, Munetsugu; Okumura, Akihisa; Mizuguchi, Masashi

    2015-02-15

    We retrospectively collected three patients with clinically mild encephalitis with a reversible splenial lesion (MERS) after mumps vaccination, and reviewed five patients, including two patients previously reported. The five patients (all males, aged 1 to 9) presented with fever, vomiting, or headache as the initial symptoms (day 0), suggesting meningitis, at 13 to 21 days after mumps vaccination. Consciousness disturbance, delirious behavior, seizures, or dysarthria was observed on days 1 to 3, which had completely resolved before day 11. Hyponatremia was observed in all patients. A cerebrospinal fluid study showed pleocytosis, and confirmed the vaccine strain genome. MRI revealed reduced diffusion in the splenium of the corpus callosum on days 2 to 4, which had completely disappeared on the follow-up studies performed on days 7-15. EEG showed high voltage slow wave in three patients, which later normalized. These findings led to a diagnosis of MERS after mumps vaccination. MERS after mumps vaccination may be more common than previously considered. MERS is suspected when a male patient after mumps vaccination presents with neurological symptoms with hyponatremia, following symptoms of aseptic meningitis, and MRI would be performed to examine the splenium of the corpus callosum. PMID:25542078

  8. Feasibility of Using Convalescent Plasma Immunotherapy for MERS-CoV Infection, Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Arabi, Yaseen M; Hajeer, Ali H; Luke, Thomas; Raviprakash, Kanakatte; Balkhy, Hanan; Johani, Sameera; Al-Dawood, Abdulaziz; Al-Qahtani, Saad; Al-Omari, Awad; Al-Hameed, Fahad; Hayden, Frederick G; Fowler, Robert; Bouchama, Abderrezak; Shindo, Nahoko; Al-Khairy, Khalid; Carson, Gail; Taha, Yusri; Sadat, Musharaf; Alahmadi, Mashail

    2016-09-01

    We explored the feasibility of collecting convalescent plasma for passive immunotherapy of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection by using ELISA to screen serum samples from 443 potential plasma donors: 196 patients with suspected or laboratory-confirmed MERS-CoV infection, 230 healthcare workers, and 17 household contacts exposed to MERS-CoV. ELISA-reactive samples were further tested by indirect fluorescent antibody and microneutralization assays. Of the 443 tested samples, 12 (2.7%) had a reactive ELISA result, and 9 of the 12 had reactive indirect fluorescent antibody and microneutralization assay titers. Undertaking clinical trials of convalescent plasma for passive immunotherapy of MERS-CoV infection may be feasible, but such trials would be challenging because of the small pool of potential donors with sufficiently high antibody titers. Alternative strategies to identify convalescent plasma donors with adequate antibody titers should be explored, including the sampling of serum from patients with more severe disease and sampling at earlier points during illness. PMID:27532807

  9. Structure and Conformational Dynamics of the Metalloregulator MerR upon Binding of Hg(II)

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Hao-Bo; Johs, Alexander; Parks, Jerry M; Olliff, Lyn; Miller, Susan M; Summers, Anne O; Liang, Liyuan; Smith, Jeremy C

    2010-03-01

    The bacterial metalloregulator MerR is the index case of an eponymous family of regulatory proteins, which controls the transcription of a set of genes (the mer operon) conferring mercury resistance in many bacteria. Homodimeric MerR represses transcription in the absence of mercury and activates transcription upon Hg(II) binding. Here, the average structures of the apo and Hg(II)-bound forms of MerR in aqueous solution are examined using small-angle X-ray scattering, indicating an extended conformation of the metal-bound protein and revealing the existence of a novel compact conformation in the absence of Hg(II). Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are performed to characterize the conformational dynamics of the Hg(II)-bound form. In both small-angle X-ray scattering and MD, the average torsional angle between DNA-binding domains is approximately 65 degrees. Furthermore, in MD, interdomain motions on a timescale of approximately 10 ns involving large-amplitude (approximately 20 A) domain opening-and-closing, coupled to approximately 40 degrees variations of interdomain torsional angle, are revealed. This correlated domain motion may propagate allosteric changes from the metal-binding site to the DNA-binding site while maintaining DNA contacts required to initiate DNA underwinding.

  10. Structure and Conformational Dynamics of the Metalloregulator MerR upon Binding of Hg(II)

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Hao-Bo; Johs, Alexander; Parks, Jerry M; Olliff, Lyn; Miller, Susan M; Summers, Anne O; Liang, Liyuan; Smith, Jeremy C

    2010-05-01

    The bacterial metalloregulator MerR is the index case of an eponymous family of regulatory proteins, which controls the transcription of a set of genes (the mer operon) conferring mercury resistance in many bacteria. Homodimeric MerR represses transcription in the absence of mercury and activates transcription upon Hg(II) binding. Here, the average structures of the apo and Hg(II)-bound forms of MerR in aqueous solution are examined using small-angle X-ray scattering, indicating an extended conformation of the metal-bound protein and revealing the existence of a novel compact conformation in the absence of Hg(II). Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are performed to characterize the conformational dynamics of the Hg(II)-bound form. In both small-angle X-ray scattering and MD, the average torsional angle between DNA-binding domains is not, vert, similar 65 . Furthermore, in MD, interdomain motions on a timescale of not, vert, similar 10 ns involving large-amplitude (not, vert, similar 20 ) domain opening-and-closing, coupled to not, vert, similar 40 variations of interdomain torsional angle, are revealed. This correlated domain motion may propagate allosteric changes from the metal-binding site to the DNA-binding site while maintaining DNA contacts required to initiate DNA underwinding.

  11. Feasibility of Using Convalescent Plasma Immunotherapy for MERS-CoV Infection, Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Hajeer, Ali H.; Luke, Thomas; Raviprakash, Kanakatte; Balkhy, Hanan; Johani, Sameera; Al-Dawood, Abdulaziz; Al-Qahtani, Saad; Al-Omari, Awad; Al-Hameed, Fahad; Hayden, Frederick G.; Fowler, Robert; Bouchama, Abderrezak; Shindo, Nahoko; Al-Khairy, Khalid; Carson, Gail; Taha, Yusri; Sadat, Musharaf; Alahmadi, Mashail

    2016-01-01

    We explored the feasibility of collecting convalescent plasma for passive immunotherapy of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection by using ELISA to screen serum samples from 443 potential plasma donors: 196 patients with suspected or laboratory-confirmed MERS-CoV infection, 230 healthcare workers, and 17 household contacts exposed to MERS-CoV. ELISA-reactive samples were further tested by indirect fluorescent antibody and microneutralization assays. Of the 443 tested samples, 12 (2.7%) had a reactive ELISA result, and 9 of the 12 had reactive indirect fluorescent antibody and microneutralization assay titers. Undertaking clinical trials of convalescent plasma for passive immunotherapy of MERS-CoV infection may be feasible, but such trials would be challenging because of the small pool of potential donors with sufficiently high antibody titers. Alternative strategies to identify convalescent plasma donors with adequate antibody titers should be explored, including the sampling of serum from patients with more severe disease and sampling at earlier points during illness. PMID:27532807

  12. Enhanced MERS coronavirus surveillance of travelers from the Middle East to England.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Helen Lucy; Zhao, Hongxin; Green, Helen K; Boddington, Nicola L; Carvalho, Carlos F A; Osman, Husam K; Sadler, Carol; Zambon, Maria; Bermingham, Alison; Pebody, Richard G

    2014-09-01

    During the first year of enhanced MERS coronavirus surveillance in England, 77 persons traveling from the Middle East had acute respiratory illness and were tested for the virus. Infection was confirmed in 2 travelers with acute respiratory distress syndrome and 2 of their contacts. Patients with less severe manifestations tested negative. PMID:25148267

  13. Enhanced MERS Coronavirus Surveillance of Travelers from the Middle East to England

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Helen Lucy; Zhao, Hongxin; Green, Helen K.; Boddington, Nicola L.; Carvalho, Carlos F.A.; Osman, Husam K.; Sadler, Carol; Zambon, Maria; Bermingham, Alison

    2014-01-01

    During the first year of enhanced MERS coronavirus surveillance in England, 77 persons traveling from the Middle East had acute respiratory illness and were tested for the virus. Infection was confirmed in 2 travelers with acute respiratory distress syndrome and 2 of their contacts. Patients with less severe manifestations tested negative. PMID:25148267

  14. Phase coexistence and spatial correlations in reconstituting k-mer models.

    PubMed

    Chatterjee, Amit Kumar; Daga, Bijoy; Mohanty, P K

    2016-07-01

    In reconstituting k-mer models, extended objects that occupy several sites on a one-dimensional lattice undergo directed or undirected diffusion, and reconstitute-when in contact-by transferring a single monomer unit from one k-mer to the other; the rates depend on the size of participating k-mers. This polydispersed system has two conserved quantities, the number of k-mers and the packing fraction. We provide a matrix product method to write the steady state of this model and to calculate the spatial correlation functions analytically. We show that for a constant reconstitution rate, the spatial correlation exhibits damped oscillations in some density regions separated, from other regions with exponential decay, by a disorder surface. In a specific limit, this constant-rate reconstitution model is equivalent to a single dimer model and exhibits a phase coexistence similar to the one observed earlier in totally asymmetric simple exclusion process on a ring with a defect. PMID:27575091

  15. Toward Bioremediation of Methylmercury Using Silica Encapsulated Escherichia coli Harboring the mer Operon.

    PubMed

    Kane, Aunica L; Al-Shayeb, Basem; Holec, Patrick V; Rajan, Srijay; Le Mieux, Nicholas E; Heinsch, Stephen C; Psarska, Sona; Aukema, Kelly G; Sarkar, Casim A; Nater, Edward A; Gralnick, Jeffrey A

    2016-01-01

    Mercury is a highly toxic heavy metal and the ability of the neurotoxin methylmercury to biomagnify in the food chain is a serious concern for both public and environmental health globally. Because thousands of tons of mercury are released into the environment each year, remediation strategies are urgently needed and prompted this study. To facilitate remediation of both organic and inorganic forms of mercury, Escherichia coli was engineered to harbor a subset of genes (merRTPAB) from the mercury resistance operon. Protein products of the mer operon enable transport of mercury into the cell, cleavage of organic C-Hg bonds, and subsequent reduction of ionic mercury to the less toxic elemental form, Hg(0). E. coli containing merRTPAB was then encapsulated in silica beads resulting in a biological-based filtration material. Performing encapsulation in aerated mineral oil yielded silica beads that were smooth, spherical, and similar in diameter. Following encapsulation, E. coli containing merRTPAB retained the ability to degrade methylmercury and performed similarly to non-encapsulated cells. Due to the versatility of both the engineered mercury resistant strain and silica bead technology, this study provides a strong foundation for use of the resulting biological-based filtration material for methylmercury remediation. PMID:26761437

  16. Metalloregulatory DNA-Binding Protein Encoded by the merR Gene: Isolation and Characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Halloran, Thomas; Walsh, Christopher

    1987-01-01

    The MerR protein mediates the induction of the mercury resistance phenotype in bacteria; it has been isolated in order to study the effects of metal-ion induced changes in the metabolism of prokaryotic cells at the molecular level. After DNA sequences responsible for negative autoregulation were removed, the 16-kilodalton protein was overproduced and purified to more than 90 percent homogeneity by a salt extraction procedure that yields about 5 milligrams of protein per gram of cells. Complementation data, amino terminal analysis, gel filtration, and deoxyribonuclease I protection studies demonstrate that the purified merR gene product is a dimer under nondenaturing conditions and that it binds specifically to DNA, in the presence and absence of mercury, at a palindromic site which is directly between the -10 and -35 regions of the structural genes and adjacent to its own promoter. These initial results indicate that MerR is a DNA-binding metalloregulatory protein that plays a central role in this heavy metal responsive system and they delineate an operator site in the mer operon.

  17. Multi-Agent Modeling and Simulation Approach for Design and Analysis of MER Mission Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seah, Chin; Sierhuis, Maarten; Clancey, William J.

    2005-01-01

    A space mission operations system is a complex network of human organizations, information and deep-space network systems and spacecraft hardware. As in other organizations, one of the problems in mission operations is managing the relationship of the mission information systems related to how people actually work (practices). Brahms, a multi-agent modeling and simulation tool, was used to model and simulate NASA's Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission work practice. The objective was to investigate the value of work practice modeling for mission operations design. From spring 2002 until winter 2003, a Brahms modeler participated in mission systems design sessions and operations testing for the MER mission held at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). He observed how designers interacted with the Brahms tool. This paper discussed mission system designers' reactions to the simulation output during model validation and the presentation of generated work procedures. This project spurred JPL's interest in the Brahms model, but it was never included as part of the formal mission design process. We discuss why this occurred. Subsequently, we used the MER model to develop a future mission operations concept. Team members were reluctant to use the MER model, even though it appeared to be highly relevant to their effort. We describe some of the tool issues we encountered.

  18. Toward Bioremediation of Methylmercury Using Silica Encapsulated Escherichia coli Harboring the mer Operon

    PubMed Central

    Kane, Aunica L.; Al-Shayeb, Basem; Holec, Patrick V.; Rajan, Srijay; Le Mieux, Nicholas E.; Heinsch, Stephen C.; Psarska, Sona; Aukema, Kelly G.; Sarkar, Casim A.; Nater, Edward A.; Gralnick, Jeffrey A.

    2016-01-01

    Mercury is a highly toxic heavy metal and the ability of the neurotoxin methylmercury to biomagnify in the food chain is a serious concern for both public and environmental health globally. Because thousands of tons of mercury are released into the environment each year, remediation strategies are urgently needed and prompted this study. To facilitate remediation of both organic and inorganic forms of mercury, Escherichia coli was engineered to harbor a subset of genes (merRTPAB) from the mercury resistance operon. Protein products of the mer operon enable transport of mercury into the cell, cleavage of organic C-Hg bonds, and subsequent reduction of ionic mercury to the less toxic elemental form, Hg(0). E. coli containing merRTPAB was then encapsulated in silica beads resulting in a biological-based filtration material. Performing encapsulation in aerated mineral oil yielded silica beads that were smooth, spherical, and similar in diameter. Following encapsulation, E. coli containing merRTPAB retained the ability to degrade methylmercury and performed similarly to non-encapsulated cells. Due to the versatility of both the engineered mercury resistant strain and silica bead technology, this study provides a strong foundation for use of the resulting biological-based filtration material for methylmercury remediation. PMID:26761437

  19. 21 CFR 177.1040 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 3 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer. 177.1040 Section 177.1040 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (CONTINUED) INDIRECT FOOD ADDITIVES: POLYMERS Substances for Use as Basic Components of Single and Repeated Use...

  20. MER Surface Phase; Blurring the Line Between Fault Protection and What is Supposed to Happen

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reeves, Glenn E.

    2008-01-01

    An assessment on the limitations of communication with MER rovers and how such constraints drove the system design, flight software and fault protection architecture, blurring the line between traditional fault protection and expected nominal behavior, and requiring the most novel autonomous and semi-autonomous elements of the vehicle software including communication, surface mobility, attitude knowledge acquisition, fault protection, and the activity arbitration service.

  1. Direct Measurement of Hg(II) Removal from Organomercurial Lyase (MerB) by Tryptophan Fluorescence: NmerA Domain of Co-evolved γ -Proteobacterial Mercuric Ion Reductase (MerA) Is More Efficient than MerA Catalytic Core or Glutathione†

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Baoyu; Nauss, Rachel; Harwood, Ian; Miller, Susan M.

    2011-01-01

    Aerobic and facultative bacteria and archaea harboring mer loci exhibit resistance to the toxic effects of Hg(II) and organomercurials [RHg(I)]. In broad spectrum resistance, RHg(I) is converted to less toxic Hg(0) in the cytosol by the sequential action of organomercurial lyase (MerB: RHg(I) --> RH + Hg(II)) and mercuric ion reductase (MerA: Hg(II) --> Hg(0)) enzymes, requiring transfer of Hg(II) from MerB to MerA. Although previous studies with γ-proteobacterial versions of MerA and a non-physiological Hg(II)-DTT-MerB complex qualitatively support a pathway for direct transfer between proteins, assessment of the relative efficiencies of Hg(II) transfer to the two different di-cysteine motifs in γ-proteobacterial MerA and to competing cellular thiol is lacking. Here we show the intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence of γ-proteobacterial MerB is sensitive to Hg(II) binding and use this to probe the kinetics of Hg(II) removal from MerB by the N-terminal domain (NmerA) and catalytic core C-terminal cysteine pairs of its co-evolved MerA, and by glutathione (GSH), the major competing cellular thiol in γ-proteobacteria. At physiologically relevant concentrations, reaction with a 10-fold excess NmerA over HgMerB removes ≥ 92% Hg(II), while similar extents of reaction require more than 1000-fold excess of GSH. Kinetically, the apparent second order rate constant for Hg(II) transfer from MerB to NmerA, at 2.3 ± 0.1 × 104 M−1 s−1 is ~ 100-fold greater than that for GSH (1.2 ± 0.2 × 102 M−1 s−1) or the MerA catalytic core (1.2 × 102 M−1 s−1), establishing transfer to the metallochaperone-like NmerA domain as the kinetically favored pathway in this co-evolved system. PMID:20722420

  2. Direct measurement of mercury(II) removal from organomercurial lyase (MerB) by tryptophan fluorescence: NmerA domain of coevolved γ-proteobacterial mercuric ion reductase (MerA) is more efficient than MerA catalytic core or glutathione .

    PubMed

    Hong, Baoyu; Nauss, Rachel; Harwood, Ian M; Miller, Susan M

    2010-09-21

    Aerobic and facultative bacteria and archaea harboring mer loci exhibit resistance to the toxic effects of Hg(II) and organomercurials [RHg(I)]. In broad spectrum resistance, RHg(I) is converted to less toxic Hg(0) in the cytosol by the sequential action of organomercurial lyase (MerB: RHg(I) → RH + Hg(II)) and mercuric ion reductase (MerA: Hg(II) → Hg(0)) enzymes, requiring transfer of Hg(II) from MerB to MerA. Although previous studies with γ-proteobacterial versions of MerA and a nonphysiological Hg(II)-DTT-MerB complex qualitatively support a pathway for direct transfer between proteins, assessment of the relative efficiencies of Hg(II) transfer to the two different dicysteine motifs in γ-proteobacterial MerA and to competing cellular thiol is lacking. Here we show the intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence of γ-proteobacterial MerB is sensitive to Hg(II) binding and use this to probe the kinetics of Hg(II) removal from MerB by the N-terminal domain (NmerA) and catalytic core C-terminal cysteine pairs of its coevolved MerA and by glutathione (GSH), the major competing cellular thiol in γ-proteobacteria. At physiologically relevant concentrations, reaction with a 10-fold excess of NmerA over HgMerB removes ≥92% Hg(II), while similar extents of reaction require more than 1000-fold excess of GSH. Kinetically, the apparent second-order rate constant for Hg(II) transfer from MerB to NmerA, at (2.3 ± 0.1) × 10(4) M(-1) s(-1), is ∼100-fold greater than that for GSH ((1.2 ± 0.2) × 10(2) M(-1) s(-1)) or the MerA catalytic core (1.2 × 10(2) M(-1) s(-1)), establishing transfer to the metallochaperone-like NmerA domain as the kinetically favored pathway in this coevolved system. PMID:20722420

  3. Human polyclonal immunoglobulin G from transchromosomic bovines inhibits MERS-CoV in vivo.

    PubMed

    Luke, Thomas; Wu, Hua; Zhao, Jincun; Channappanavar, Rudragouda; Coleman, Christopher M; Jiao, Jin-An; Matsushita, Hiroaki; Liu, Ye; Postnikova, Elena N; Ork, Britini L; Glenn, Gregory; Flyer, David; Defang, Gabriel; Raviprakash, Kanakatte; Kochel, Tadeusz; Wang, Jonathan; Nie, Wensheng; Smith, Gale; Hensley, Lisa E; Olinger, Gene G; Kuhn, Jens H; Holbrook, Michael R; Johnson, Reed F; Perlman, Stanley; Sullivan, Eddie; Frieman, Matthew B

    2016-02-17

    As of 13 November 2015, 1618 laboratory-confirmed human cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection, including 579 deaths, had been reported to the World Health Organization. No specific preventive or therapeutic agent of proven value against MERS-CoV is currently available. Public Health England and the International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infection Consortium identified passive immunotherapy with neutralizing antibodies as a treatment approach that warrants priority study. Two experimental MERS-CoV vaccines were used to vaccinate two groups of transchromosomic (Tc) bovines that were genetically modified to produce large quantities of fully human polyclonal immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies. Vaccination with a clade A γ-irradiated whole killed virion vaccine (Jordan strain) or a clade B spike protein nanoparticle vaccine (Al-Hasa strain) resulted in Tc bovine sera with high enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and neutralizing antibody titers in vitro. Two purified Tc bovine human IgG immunoglobulins (Tc hIgG), SAB-300 (produced after Jordan strain vaccination) and SAB-301 (produced after Al-Hasa strain vaccination), also had high ELISA and neutralizing antibody titers without antibody-dependent enhancement in vitro. SAB-301 was selected for in vivo and preclinical studies. Administration of single doses of SAB-301 12 hours before or 24 and 48 hours after MERS-CoV infection (Erasmus Medical Center 2012 strain) of Ad5-hDPP4 receptor-transduced mice rapidly resulted in viral lung titers near or below the limit of detection. Tc bovines, combined with the ability to quickly produce Tc hIgG and develop in vitro assays and animal model(s), potentially offer a platform to rapidly produce a therapeutic to prevent and/or treat MERS-CoV infection and/or other emerging infectious diseases. PMID:26888429

  4. Construction and characterization of a mercury-independent MerR activator (MerRAC): transcriptional activation in the absence of Hg(II) is accompanied by DNA distortion.

    PubMed Central

    Parkhill, J; Ansari, A Z; Wright, J G; Brown, N L; O'Halloran, T V

    1993-01-01

    The MeR regulatory protein of transposon Tn501 controls the expression of the mercury resistance (mer) genes in response to the concentration of mercuric ions. MerR is unique among prokaryotic regulatory proteins so far described in that it acts as a repressor [-Hg(II)] and an activator [+Hg(II)] of transcription of the mer genes, but binds to a single site on the DNA in both cases. This transcriptional activation process has been postulated to involve a protein-induced conformational change in the DNA that allows RNA polymerase more readily to form an open complex at the promoter. It has been shown [Frantz and O'Halloran (1990) Biochemistry, 29, 4747-4751] that activation of transcription by MerR in the presence of mercury is accompanied by hypersensitivity of the operator to chemical nucleases that are sensitive to local distortion in DNA structure. Here we describe specific mutations in MerR that allow the protein to stimulate transcription in the absence of the allosteric activator Hg(II). We demonstrate that the degree of activation caused by these mutants directly correlates with the degree of DNA distortion as measured by the hypersensitivity of MerR-DNA complexes to the nuclease Cu-5-phenyl-o-phenanthroline. These results support the model described above. Images PMID:8440234

  5. 3B11-N, a monoclonal antibody against MERS-CoV, reduces lung pathology in rhesus monkeys following intratracheal inoculation of MERS-CoV Jordan-n3/2012.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Reed F; Bagci, Ulas; Keith, Lauren; Tang, Xianchun; Mollura, Daniel J; Zeitlin, Larry; Qin, Jing; Huzella, Louis; Bartos, Christopher J; Bohorova, Natasha; Bohorov, Ognian; Goodman, Charles; Kim, Do H; Paulty, Michael H; Velasco, Jesus; Whaley, Kevin J; Johnson, Joshua C; Pettitt, James; Ork, Britini L; Solomon, Jeffrey; Oberlander, Nicholas; Zhu, Quan; Sun, Jiusong; Holbrook, Michael R; Olinger, Gene G; Baric, Ralph S; Hensley, Lisa E; Jahrling, Peter B; Marasco, Wayne A

    2016-03-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was identified in 2012 as the causative agent of a severe, lethal respiratory disease occurring across several countries in the Middle East. To date there have been over 1600 laboratory confirmed cases of MERS-CoV in 26 countries with a case fatality rate of 36%. Given the endemic region, it is possible that MERS-CoV could spread during the annual Hajj pilgrimage, necessitating countermeasure development. In this report, we describe the clinical and radiographic changes of rhesus monkeys following infection with 5×10(6) PFU MERS-CoV Jordan-n3/2012. Two groups of NHPs were treated with either a human anti-MERS monoclonal antibody 3B11-N or E410-N, an anti-HIV antibody. MERS-CoV Jordan-n3/2012 infection resulted in quantifiable changes by computed tomography, but limited other clinical signs of disease. 3B11-N treated subjects developed significantly reduced lung pathology when compared to infected, untreated subjects, indicating that this antibody may be a suitable MERS-CoV treatment. PMID:26828465

  6. Intranasal vaccination with recombinant receptor-binding domain of MERS-CoV spike protein induces much stronger local mucosal immune responses than subcutaneous immunization: Implication for designing novel mucosal MERS vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Cuiqing; Li, Ye; Wang, Lili; Zhao, Guangyu; Tao, Xinrong; Tseng, Chien-Te K; Zhou, Yusen; Du, Lanying; Jiang, Shibo

    2014-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was originally identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012. It has caused MERS outbreaks with high mortality in the Middle East and Europe, raising a serious concern about its pandemic potential. Therefore, development of effective vaccines is crucial for preventing its further spread and future pandemic. Our previous study has shown that subcutaneous (s.c.) vaccination of a recombinant protein containing receptor-binding domain (RBD) of MERS-CoV S fused with Fc of human IgG (RBD-Fc) induced strong systemic neutralizing antibody responses in vaccinated mice. Here, we compared local and systemic immune responses induced by RBD-Fc via intranasal (i.n.) and s.c. immunization pathways. We found that i.n. vaccination of MERS-CoV RBD-Fc induced systemic humoral immune responses comparable to those induced by s.c. vaccination, including neutralizing antibodies, but more robust systemic cellular immune responses and significantly higher local mucosal immune responses in mouse lungs. This study suggests the potential of developing MERS-CoV RBD protein into an effective and safe mucosal candidate vaccine for prevention of respiratory tract infections caused by MERS-CoV. PMID:24560617

  7. Synthesis, biological evaluation, and physicochemical property assessment of 4-substituted 2-phenylaminoquinazolines as Mer tyrosine kinase inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sheng-Biao; Cui, Mu-Tian; Wang, Xiao-Feng; Ohkoshi, Emika; Goto, Masuo; Yang, De-Xuan; Li, Linna; Yuan, Shoujun; Morris-Natschke, Susan L; Lee, Kuo-Hsiung; Xie, Lan

    2016-07-01

    Current results identified 4-substituted 2-phenylaminoquinazoline compounds as novel Mer tyrosine kinase (Mer TK) inhibitors with a new scaffold. Twenty-one 2,4-disubstituted quinazolines (series 4-7) were designed, synthesized, and evaluated against Mer TK and a panel of human tumor cell lines aimed at exploring new Mer TK inhibitors as novel potential antitumor agents. A new lead, 4b, was discovered with a good balance between high potency (IC50 0.68μM) in the Mer TK assay and antiproliferative activity against MV4-11 (GI50 8.54μM), as well as other human tumor cell lines (GI50<20μM), and a desirable druglike property profile with low logP value (2.54) and high aqueous solubility (95.6μg/mL). Molecular modeling elucidated an expected binding mode of 4b with Mer TK and necessary interactions between them, thus supporting the hypothesis that Mer TK might be a biologic target of this kind of new active compound. PMID:27238842

  8. Inhibition of MerTK increases chemosensitivity and decreases oncogenic potential in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.

    PubMed

    Brandao, L N; Winges, A; Christoph, S; Sather, S; Migdall-Wilson, J; Schlegel, J; McGranahan, A; Gao, D; Liang, X; Deryckere, D; Graham, D K

    2013-01-01

    Pediatric leukemia survival rates have improved dramatically over the past decades. However, current treatment protocols are still largely ineffective in cases of relapsed leukemia and are associated with a significant rate of chronic health conditions. Thus, there is a continued need for new therapeutic options. Here, we show that mer receptor tyrosine kinase (MerTK) was abnormally expressed in approximately one half of pediatric T-cell leukemia patient samples and T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) cell lines. Stimulation of MerTK by the ligand Gas6 led to activation of the prosurvival proteins Erk 1/2 and Stat5, and MerTK-dependent activation of the STAT pathway in leukemia represents a novel finding. Furthermore, inhibition of MerTK expression increased the sensitivity of T-ALL cells to treatment with chemotherapeutic agents and decreased the oncogenic potential of the Jurkat T-ALL cell line in a methylcellulose colony-forming assay. Lastly, inhibition of MerTK expression significantly increased median survival in a xenograft mouse model of leukemia (30.5 days vs 60 days, P<0.0001). These results suggest that inhibition of MerTK is a promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of leukemia and may allow for dose reduction of currently used chemotherapeutics resulting in decreased rates of therapy-associated toxicities. PMID:23353780

  9. Inhibition of MerTK increases chemosensitivity and decreases oncogenic potential in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia

    PubMed Central

    Brandao, L N; Winges, A; Christoph, S; Sather, S; Migdall-Wilson, J; Schlegel, J; McGranahan, A; Gao, D; Liang, X; DeRyckere, D; Graham, D K

    2013-01-01

    Pediatric leukemia survival rates have improved dramatically over the past decades. However, current treatment protocols are still largely ineffective in cases of relapsed leukemia and are associated with a significant rate of chronic health conditions. Thus, there is a continued need for new therapeutic options. Here, we show that mer receptor tyrosine kinase (MerTK) was abnormally expressed in approximately one half of pediatric T-cell leukemia patient samples and T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) cell lines. Stimulation of MerTK by the ligand Gas6 led to activation of the prosurvival proteins Erk 1/2 and Stat5, and MerTK-dependent activation of the STAT pathway in leukemia represents a novel finding. Furthermore, inhibition of MerTK expression increased the sensitivity of T-ALL cells to treatment with chemotherapeutic agents and decreased the oncogenic potential of the Jurkat T-ALL cell line in a methylcellulose colony-forming assay. Lastly, inhibition of MerTK expression significantly increased median survival in a xenograft mouse model of leukemia (30.5 days vs 60 days, P<0.0001). These results suggest that inhibition of MerTK is a promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of leukemia and may allow for dose reduction of currently used chemotherapeutics resulting in decreased rates of therapy-associated toxicities. PMID:23353780

  10. UNC569, a novel small molecule Mer inhibitor with efficacy against acute lymphoblastic leukemia in vitro and in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Christoph, Sandra; DeRyckere, Deborah; Schlegel, Jennifer; Frazer, J. Kimble; Batchelor, Lance A.; Trakhimets, Alesia Y.; Sather, Susan; Hunter, Debra M.; Cummings, Christopher; Liu, Jing; Yang, Chao; Kireev, Dmitri; Simpson, Catherine; Norris-Drouin, Jacqueline; Hull-Ryde, Emily A.; Janzen, William P.; Johnson, Gary L.; Wang, Xiaodong; Frye, Stephen V.; Earp, H. Shelton; Graham, Douglas K.

    2013-01-01

    Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common malignancy in children. Although survival rates have improved, patients with certain biological subtypes still have suboptimal outcomes. Current chemotherapeutic regimens are associated with short- and long-term toxicities and novel, less toxic therapeutic strategies are needed. Mer receptor tyrosine kinase is ectopically expressed in ALL patient samples and cell lines. Inhibition of Mer expression reduces pro-survival signaling, increases chemosensitivity, and delays development of leukaemia in vivo suggesting that Mer tyrosine kinase inhibitors are excellent candidates for targeted therapies. Brain and spinal tumors are the second most common malignancies in childhood. Multiple chemotherapy approaches and radiation have been attempted, yet overall survival remains dismal. Mer is also abnormally expressed in atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumors (ATRT), providing a rationale for targeting Mer as a therapeutic strategy. We have previously described UNC569, the first small molecule Mer inhibitor. This manuscript describes the biochemical and biological effects of UNC569 in ALL and ATRT. UNC569 inhibited Mer activation and downstream signaling through ERK1/2 and AKT, determined by western blot analysis. Treatment with UNC569 reduced proliferation/survival in liquid culture, decreased colony formation in methylcellulose/soft agar, and increased sensitivity to cytotoxic chemotherapies. MYC transgenic zebrafish with T-ALL were treated with UNC569 (4 µM for 2 weeks). Fluorescence was quantified as indicator of the distribution of lymphoblasts, which express Mer and enhanced green fluorescent protein. UNC569 induced >50% reduction in tumor burden compared to vehicle- and mock-treated fish. These data support further development of Mer inhibitors as effective therapies in ALL and ATRT. PMID:23997116

  11. Protective Effect of Intranasal Regimens Containing Peptidic Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Fusion Inhibitor Against MERS-CoV Infection.

    PubMed

    Channappanavar, Rudragouda; Lu, Lu; Xia, Shuai; Du, Lanying; Meyerholz, David K; Perlman, Stanley; Jiang, Shibo

    2015-12-15

    To gain entry into the target cell, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus (MERS-CoV) uses its spike (S) protein S2 subunit to fuse with the plasma or endosomal membrane. Previous work identified a peptide derived from the heptad repeat (HR) 2 domain in S2 subunit, HR2P, which potently blocked MERS-CoV S protein-mediated membrane fusion. Here, we tested an HR2P analogue with improved pharmaceutical property, HR2P-M2, for its inhibitory activity against MERS-CoV infection in vitro and in vivo. HR2P-M2 was highly effective in inhibiting MERS-CoV S protein-mediated cell-cell fusion and infection by pseudoviruses expressing MERS-CoV S protein with or without mutation in the HR1 region. It interacted with the HR1 peptide to form stable α-helical complex and blocked six-helix bundle formation between the HR1 and HR2 domains in the viral S protein. Intranasally administered HR2P-M2 effectively protected adenovirus serotype-5-human dipeptidyl peptidase 4-transduced mice from infection by MERS-CoV strains with or without mutations in the HR1 region of S protein, with >1000-fold reduction of viral titers in lung, and the protection was enhanced by combining HR2P-M2 with interferon β. These results indicate that this combination regimen merits further development to prevent MERS in high-risk populations, including healthcare workers and patient family members, and to treat MERS-CoV-infected patients. PMID:26164863

  12. NCI Researchers Discover Exceptionally Potent Antibodies with Potential for Prophylaxis and Therapy of MERS-Coronavirus Infections | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    By Andrea Frydl, Contributing Writer In a recent article published in the Journal of Virology, Tianlei Ying, Ph.D., Dimiter Dimitrov, Ph.D., and their colleagues in the Laboratory of Experimental Immunology (LEI), Cancer and Inflammation Program, NCI Center for Cancer Research, reported the identification of three human monoclonal antibodies (m336, m337, and m338) that target the part of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) that is responsible for binding to its receptor. These antibodies are exceptionally potent inhibitors of MERS-CoV infection and also provide a basis for creating a future MERS-CoV vaccine.

  13. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) origin and animal reservoir.

    PubMed

    Mohd, Hamzah A; Al-Tawfiq, Jaffar A; Memish, Ziad A

    2016-01-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a novel coronavirus discovered in 2012 and is responsible for acute respiratory syndrome in humans. Though not confirmed yet, multiple surveillance and phylogenetic studies suggest a bat origin. The disease is heavily endemic in dromedary camel populations of East Africa and the Middle East. It is unclear as to when the virus was introduced to dromedary camels, but data from studies that investigated stored dromedary camel sera and geographical distribution of involved dromedary camel populations suggested that the virus was present in dromedary camels several decades ago. Though bats and alpacas can serve as potential reservoirs for MERS-CoV, dromedary camels seem to be the only animal host responsible for the spill over human infections. PMID:27255185

  14. The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) does not replicate in Syrian hamsters.

    PubMed

    de Wit, Emmie; Prescott, Joseph; Baseler, Laura; Bushmaker, Trenton; Thomas, Tina; Lackemeyer, Matthew G; Martellaro, Cynthia; Milne-Price, Shauna; Haddock, Elaine; Haagmans, Bart L; Feldmann, Heinz; Munster, Vincent J

    2013-01-01

    In 2012 a novel coronavirus, MERS-CoV, associated with severe respiratory disease emerged in the Arabian Peninsula. To date, 55 human cases have been reported, including 31 fatal cases. Several of the cases were likely a result of human-to-human transmission. The emergence of this novel coronavirus prompts the need for a small animal model to study the pathogenesis of this virus and to test the efficacy of potential intervention strategies. In this study we explored the use of Syrian hamsters as a small animal disease model, using intratracheal inoculation and inoculation via aerosol. Clinical signs of disease, virus replication, histological lesions, cytokine upregulation nor seroconversion were observed in any of the inoculated animals, indicating that MERS-CoV does not replicate in Syrian hamsters. PMID:23844250

  15. Application of State Analysis and Goal-Based Operations to a MER Mission Scenario

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, J. Richard; Ingham, Michel D.; Mishkin, Andrew H.; Rasmussen, Robert D.; Starbird, Thomas W.

    2006-01-01

    State Analysis is a model-based systems engineering methodology employing a rigorous discovery process which articulates operations concepts and operability needs as an integrated part of system design. The process produces requirements on system and software design in the form of explicit models which describe the behavior of states and the relationships among them. By applying State Analysis to an actual MER flight mission scenario, this study addresses the specific real world challenges of complex space operations and explores technologies that can be brought to bear on future missions. The paper describes the tools currently used on a daily basis for MER operations planning and provides an in-depth description of the planning process, in the context of a Martian day's worth of rover engineering activities, resource modeling, flight rules, science observations, and more. It then describes how State Analysis allows for the specification of a corresponding goal-based sequence that accomplishes the same objectives, with several important additional benefits.

  16. The Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) Does Not Replicate in Syrian Hamsters

    PubMed Central

    de Wit, Emmie; Prescott, Joseph; Baseler, Laura; Bushmaker, Trenton; Thomas, Tina; Lackemeyer, Matthew G.; Martellaro, Cynthia; Milne-Price, Shauna; Haddock, Elaine; Haagmans, Bart L.; Feldmann, Heinz; Munster, Vincent J.

    2013-01-01

    In 2012 a novel coronavirus, MERS-CoV, associated with severe respiratory disease emerged in the Arabian Peninsula. To date, 55 human cases have been reported, including 31 fatal cases. Several of the cases were likely a result of human-to-human transmission. The emergence of this novel coronavirus prompts the need for a small animal model to study the pathogenesis of this virus and to test the efficacy of potential intervention strategies. In this study we explored the use of Syrian hamsters as a small animal disease model, using intratracheal inoculation and inoculation via aerosol. Clinical signs of disease, virus replication, histological lesions, cytokine upregulation nor seroconversion were observed in any of the inoculated animals, indicating that MERS-CoV does not replicate in Syrian hamsters. PMID:23844250

  17. NCI Scientists Solve Structure of Protein that Enables MERS Virus to Spread | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    Scientists at the Frederick National Lab have produced three crystal structures that reveal a specific part of a protein that can be targeted to fight the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), which causes an emerging viral respiratory illness. Senior Investigator David Waugh, Ph.D., Macromolecular Crystallography Laboratory, has solved the structure of an enzyme known as the 3C-like protease (3CLpro), which, if blocked, can prevent the virus from replicating...

  18. Mechanism of Hg-C Protonolysis in the Organomercurial Lyase MerB

    SciTech Connect

    Parks, Jerry M; Guo, Hong; Liang, Liyuan; Miller, Susan M; Summers, Anne O; Smith, Jeremy C

    2009-01-01

    Demethylation is a key reaction in global mercury cycling. The bacterial organomercurial lyase, MerB, catalyzes the demethylation of a wide range of organomercurials via Hg-C protonolysis. Two strictly conserved cysteine residues in the active site are required for catalysis, but the source of the catalytic proton and the detailed reaction mechanism have not been determined. Here, the two major proposed reaction mechanisms of MerB are investigated and compared using hybrid density functional theory calculations. A model of the active site was constructed from an X-ray crystal structure of the Hg(II)-bound MerB product complex. Stationary point structures and energies characterized for the Hg-C protonolysis of methylmercury rule out the direct protonation mechanism in which a cysteine residue delivers the catalytic proton directly to the organic leaving group. Instead, the calculations support a two-step mechanism in which Cys96 or Cys159 first donates a proton to Asp99, enabling coordination of two thiolates with R-Hg(II). At the rate-limiting transition state, Asp99 protonates the nascent carbanion in a trigonal planar, bis thiol-ligated R-Hg(II) species to cleave the Hg-C bond and release the hydrocarbon product. Reactions with two other substrates, vinylmercury and cis-2-butenyl-2-mercury, were also modeled, and the computed activation barriers for all three organomercurial substrates reproduce the trend in the experimentally observed enzymatic reaction rates. Analysis of atomic charges in the rate-limiting transition state structure using Natural Population Analysis shows that MerB lowers the activation free energy in the Hg-C protonolysis reaction by redistributing electron density into the leaving group and away from the catalytic proton.

  19. MerTK Is a Functional Regulator of Myelin Phagocytosis by Human Myeloid Cells.

    PubMed

    Healy, Luke M; Perron, Gabrielle; Won, So-Yoon; Michell-Robinson, Mackenzie A; Rezk, Ayman; Ludwin, Samuel K; Moore, Craig S; Hall, Jeffery A; Bar-Or, Amit; Antel, Jack P

    2016-04-15

    Multifocal inflammatory lesions featuring destruction of lipid-rich myelin are pathologic hallmarks of multiple sclerosis. Lesion activity is assessed by the extent and composition of myelin uptake by myeloid cells present in such lesions. In the inflamed CNS, myeloid cells are comprised of brain-resident microglia, an endogenous cell population, and monocyte-derived macrophages, which infiltrate from the systemic compartment. Using microglia isolated from the adult human brain, we demonstrate that myelin phagocytosis is dependent on the polarization state of the cells. Myelin ingestion is significantly enhanced in cells exposed to TGF-β compared with resting basal conditions and markedly reduced in classically activated polarized cells. Transcriptional analysis indicated that TGF-β-treated microglia closely resembled M0 cells. The tyrosine kinase phagocytic receptor MerTK was one of the most upregulated among a select number of differentially expressed genes in TGF-β-treated microglia. In contrast, MerTK and its known ligands, growth arrest-specific 6 and Protein S, were downregulated in classically activated cells. MerTK expression and myelin phagocytosis were higher in CNS-derived microglia than observed in monocyte-derived macrophages, both basally and under all tested polarization conditions. Specific MerTK inhibitors reduced myelin phagocytosis and the resultant anti-inflammatory biased cytokine responses for both cell types. Defining and modulating the mechanisms that regulate myelin phagocytosis has the potential to impact lesion and disease evolution in multiple sclerosis. Relevant effects would include enhancing myelin clearance, increasing anti-inflammatory molecule production by myeloid cells, and thereby permitting subsequent tissue repair. PMID:26962228

  20. Serological Evidence of MERS-CoV Antibodies in Dromedary Camels (Camelus dromedaries) in Laikipia County, Kenya

    PubMed Central

    Deem, Sharon L.; Fèvre, Eric M.; Kinnaird, Margaret; Browne, A. Springer; Muloi, Dishon; Godeke, Gert-Jan; Koopmans, Marion; Reusken, Chantal B.

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a recently identified virus causing severe viral respiratory illness in people. Little is known about the reservoir in the Horn of Africa. In Kenya, where no human MERS cases have been reported, our survey of 335 dromedary camels, representing nine herds in Laikipia County, showed a high seroprevalence (46.9%) to MERS-CoV antibodies. Between herd differences were present (14.3%– 82.9%), but was not related to management type or herd isolation. Further research should focus on identifying similarity between MERS-CoV viral isolates in Kenya and clinical isolates from the Middle East and elsewhere. PMID:26473733

  1. Relationship between the persistence of mer operon sequences in Escherichia coli and their resistance to mercury.

    PubMed

    Murtaza, Imtiyaz; Dutt, Amit; Ali, Arif

    2002-03-01

    Studies related to geographic distribution of E. coli carrying mer operon sequences were carried out on the Indian subcontinent. Out of the 80 E. coli isolates, collected from five geographically distinct regions of India, 68 were found to be resistant to one or the other heavy metal used in the study. Among these isolates, 36 were found to be resistant to the inorganic form (HgCl2) and only 5 to resist both the inorganic and organic forms of mercury. Colony hybridization studies revealed 35 isolates out of 68 to hybridize with the probe. Interestingly, some of the mercury-sensitive isolates (Hgs), especially from the Dal Lake, were found positive in hybridization studies. These findings, supported by mercury volatilization studies, indicate the presence of nonfunctional/vestigial mer sequences in the isolates collected from different environments. On the other hand, few of the mercury-resistant isolates (Hgr) from the Yamuna River did not show any sign of hybridization. Further, volatilization studies also indicated an alternate mode of resistance mechanism operating in them. The studies demonstrate that the mer operon sequences share very high homology among the E. coli isolates collected from different geographical locations, and this metal resistance may be a genetic character that arose from a common ancestral background. PMID:11821925

  2. Cutoffs and k-mers: implications from a transcriptome study in allopolyploid plants

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Transcriptome analysis is increasingly being used to study the evolutionary origins and ecology of non-model plants. One issue for both transcriptome assembly and differential gene expression analyses is the common occurrence in plants of hybridisation and whole genome duplication (WGD) and hybridization resulting in allopolyploidy. The divergence of duplicated genes following WGD creates near identical homeologues that can be problematic for de novo assembly and also reference based assembly protocols that use short reads (35 - 100 bp). Results Here we report a successful strategy for the assembly of two transcriptomes made using 75 bp Illumina reads from Pachycladon fastigiatum and Pachycladon cheesemanii. Both are allopolyploid plant species (2n = 20) that originated in the New Zealand Alps about 0.8 million years ago. In a systematic analysis of 19 different coverage cutoffs and 20 different k-mer sizes we showed that i) none of the genes could be assembled across all of the parameter space ii) assembly of each gene required an optimal set of parameter values and iii) these parameter values could be explained in part by different gene expression levels and different degrees of similarity between genes. Conclusions To obtain optimal transcriptome assemblies for allopolyploid plants, k-mer size and k-mer coverage need to be considered simultaneously across a broad parameter space. This is important for assembling a maximum number of full length ESTs and for avoiding chimeric assemblies of homeologous and paralogous gene copies. PMID:22417298

  3. Meter-scale slopes of candidate MER landing sites from point photoclinometry

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beyer, R.A.; McEwen, A.S.; Kirk, R.L.

    2003-01-01

    Photoclinometry was used to analyze the small-scale roughness of areas that fall within the proposed Mars Exploration Rover (MER) 2003 landing ellipses. The landing ellipses presented in this study were those in Athabasca Valles, Elysium Planitia, Eos Chasma, Gusev Crater, Isidis Planitia, Melas Chasma, and Meridiani Planum. We were able to constrain surface slopes on length scales comparable to the image resolution (1.5 to 12 m/pixel). The MER 2003 mission has various engineering constraints that each candidate landing ellipse must satisfy. These constraints indicate that the statistical slope values at 5 m baselines are an important criterion. We used our technique to constrain maximum surface slopes across large swaths of each image, and built up slope statistics for the images in each landing ellipse. We are confident that all MER 2003 landing site ellipses in this study, with the exception of the Melas Chasma ellipse, are within the small-scale roughness constraints. Our results have provided input into the landing hazard assessment process. In addition to evaluating the safety of the landing sites, our mapping of small-scale roughnesses can also be used to better define and map morphologic units. The morphology of a surface is characterized by the slope distribution and magnitude of slopes. In looking at how slopes are distributed, we can better define landforms and determine the boundaries of morphologic units. Copyright 2003 by the American Geophysical Union.

  4. The effects of downwelling radiance on MER surface spectra: the evil that atmospheres do

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolff, M.; Ghosh, A.; Arvidson, R.; Christensen, P.; Guinness, E.; Ruff, S.; Seelos, F.; Smith, M.; Athena Science

    2004-11-01

    While it may not be surprising to some that downwelling radiation in the martian atmosphere may contribute a non-negligible fraction of the radiance for a given surface scene, others remain shocked and surprised (and often dismayed) to discover this fact; particularly with regard to mini-TES observations. Naturally, the relative amplitude of this sky ``contamination'' is often a complicated function of meteorological conditions, viewing geometry, surface properties, and (for the IR) surface temperature. Ideally, one would use a specialized observations to mimic the actual hemispherical-directional nature of the problem. Despite repeated attempts to obtain Pancam complete sky observations and mini-TES sky octants, such observations are not available in the MER observational database. As a result, one is left with the less-enviable, though certainly more computationally intensive, task of connecting point observations (radiance and derived meteorological parameters) to a hemispherical integral of downwelling radiance. Naturally, one must turn to a radiative transfer analysis, despite oft-repeated attempts to assert otherwise. In our presentation, we offer insight into the conditions under which one must worry about atmospheric removal, as well as semi-empirical approaches (based upon said radiative transfer efforts) for producing the correction factors from the available MER atmospheric observations. This work is proudly supported by the MER program through NASA/JPL Contract No. 1242889 (MJW), as well as the contracts for the co-authors.

  5. Understanding M-ligand bonding and mer-/fac-isomerism in tris(8-hydroxyquinolinate) metallic complexes.

    PubMed

    Lima, Carlos F R A C; Taveira, Ricardo J S; Costa, José C S; Fernandes, Ana M; Melo, André; Silva, Artur M S; Santos, Luís M N B F

    2016-06-28

    Tris(8-hydroxyquinolinate) metallic complexes, Mq3, are one of the most important classes of organic semiconductor materials. Herein, the nature of the chemical bond in Mq3 complexes and its implications on their molecular properties were investigated by a combined experimental and computational approach. Various Mq3 complexes, resulting from the alteration of the metal and substitution of the 8-hydroxyquinoline ligand in different positions, were prepared. The mer-/fac-isomerism in Mq3 was explored by FTIR and NMR spectroscopy, evidencing that, irrespective of the substituent, mer- and fac-are the most stable molecular configurations of Al(iii) and In(iii) complexes, respectively. The relative M-ligand bond dissociation energies were evaluated experimentally by electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS-MS), showing a non-monotonous variation along the group (Al > In > Ga). The results reveal a strong covalent character in M-ligand bonding, which allows for through-ligand electron delocalization, and explain the preferred molecular structures of Mq3 complexes as resulting from the interplay between bonding and steric factors. The mer-isomer reduces intraligand repulsions, being preferred for smaller metals, while the fac-isomer is favoured for larger metals where stronger covalent M-ligand bonds can be formed due to more extensive through-ligand conjugation mediated by metal "d" orbitals. PMID:27273193

  6. Geology of the MER 2003 "Elysium" candidate landing site in southeastern Utopia Planitia, Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tanaka, K.L.; Carr, M.H.; Skinner, J.A.; Gilmore, M.S.; Hare, T.M.

    2003-01-01

    The NASA Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Project has been considering a landing-site ellipse designated EP78B2 in southeastern Utopia Planitia, southwest of Elysium Mons. The site appears to be relatively safe for a MER landing site because of its predicted low wind velocities in mesoscale atmospheric circulation models and its low surface roughness at various scales as indicated by topographic and imaging data sets. Previously, the site's surface rocks have been interpreted to be marine sediments or lava flows. In addition, we suggest that Late Noachian to Early Hesperian collapse and mass wasting of Noachian highland rocks contributed to the deposition of detritus in the area of the ellipse. Furthermore, we document partial Late Hesperian to Early Amazonian resurfacing of the ellipse by flows and vents that may be of mud or silicate volcanic origin. A rover investigation of the Utopia landing site using the MER Athena instrument package might address some fundamental aspects of Martian geologic evolution, such as climate change, hydrologic evolution, and magmatic and tectonic history. Copyright 2003 by the American Geophysical Union.

  7. Avoiding student infection during a Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) outbreak: a single medical school experience

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: In outbreaks of infectious disease, medical students are easily overlooked in the management of healthcare personnel protection although they serve in clinical clerkships in hospitals. In the early summer of 2015, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) struck South Korea, and students of Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine (SKKUSOM) were at risk of contracting the disease. The purpose of this report is to share SKKUSOM’s experience against the MERS outbreak and provide suggestions for medical schools to consider in the face of similar challenges. Methods: Through a process of reflection-on-action, we examined SKKUSOM’s efforts to avoid student infection during the MERS outbreak and derived a few practical guidelines that medical schools can adopt to ensure student safety in outbreaks of infectious disease. Results: The school leadership conducted ongoing risk assessment and developed contingency plans to balance student safety and continuity in medical education. They rearranged the clerkships to another hospital and offered distant lectures and tutorials. Five suggestions are extracted for medical schools to consider in infection outbreaks: instant cessation of clinical clerkships; rational decision making on a school closure; use of information technology; constant communication with hospitals; and open communication with faculty, staff, and students. Conclusion: Medical schools need to take the initiative and actively seek countermeasures against student infection. It is essential that medical schools keep constant communication with their index hospitals and the involved personnel. In order to assure student learning, medical schools may consider offering distant education with online technology. PMID:27240893

  8. From Prime to Extended Mission: Evolution of the MER Tactical Uplink Process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mishkin, Andrew H.; Laubach, Sharon

    2006-01-01

    To support a 90-day surface mission for two robotic rovers, the Mars Exploration Rover mission designed and implemented an intensive tactical operations process, enabling daily commanding of each rover. Using a combination of new processes, custom software tools, a Mars-time staffing schedule, and seven-day-a-week operations, the MER team was able to compress the traditional weeks-long command-turnaround for a deep space robotic mission to about 18 hours. However, the pace of this process was never intended to be continued indefinitely. Even before the end of the three-month prime mission, MER operations began evolving towards greater sustainability. A combination of continued software tool development, increasing team experience, and availability of reusable sequences first reduced the mean process duration to approximately 11 hours. The number of workshifts required to perform the process dropped, and the team returned to a modified 'Earth-time' schedule. Additional process and tool adaptation eventually provided the option of planning multiple Martian days of activity within a single workshift, making 5-day-a-week operations possible. The vast majority of the science team returned to their home institutions, continuing to participate fully in the tactical operations process remotely. MER has continued to operate for over two Earth-years as many of its key personnel have moved on to other projects, the operations team and budget have shrunk, and the rovers have begun to exhibit symptoms of aging.

  9. Simrank: Rapid and sensitive general-purpose k-mer search tool

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Terabyte-scale collections of string-encoded data are expected from consortia efforts such as the Human Microbiome Project http://nihroadmap.nih.gov/hmp. Intra- and inter-project data similarity searches are enabled by rapid k-mer matching strategies. Software applications for sequence database partitioning, guide tree estimation, molecular classification and alignment acceleration have benefited from embedded k-mer searches as sub-routines. However, a rapid, general-purpose, open-source, flexible, stand-alone k-mer tool has not been available. Results Here we present a stand-alone utility, Simrank, which allows users to rapidly identify database strings the most similar to query strings. Performance testing of Simrank and related tools against DNA, RNA, protein and human-languages found Simrank 10X to 928X faster depending on the dataset. Conclusions Simrank provides molecular ecologists with a high-throughput, open source choice for comparing large sequence sets to find similarity. PMID:21524302

  10. Probing high-affinity 11-mer DNA aptamer against Lup an 1 (β-conglutin).

    PubMed

    Nadal, P; Svobodova, M; Mairal, T; O'Sullivan, C K

    2013-11-01

    Aptamers are synthetic nucleic acids with great potential as analytical tools. However, the length of selected aptamers (typically 60-100 bases) can affect affinity, due to the presence of bases not required for interaction with the target, and therefore, the truncation of these selected sequences and identification of binding domains is a critical step to produce potent aptamers with higher affinities and specificities and lowered production costs. In this paper we report the truncation of an aptamer that specifically binds to β-conglutin (Lup an 1), an anaphylactic allergen. Through comparing the predicted secondary structures of the aptamers, a hairpin structure with a G-rich loop was determined to be the binding motif. The highest affinity was observed with a truncation resulting in an 11-mer sequence that had an apparent equilibrium dissociation constant (K D) of 1.7 × 10(-9) M. This 11-mer sequence was demonstrated to have high specificity for β-conglutin and showed no cross-reactivity to other lupin conglutins (α-, δ-, γ-conglutins) and closely related proteins such as gliadin. Finally, the structure of the truncated 11-mer aptamer was preliminarily elucidated, and the GQRS Mapper strongly predicted the presence of a G-quadruplex, which was subsequently corroborated using one-dimensional NMR, thus highlighting the stability of the truncated structure. PMID:24126837

  11. From Prime to Extended Mission: Evolution of the MER Tactical Uplink Process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Michkin, Andrew H.; Laubach, Sharon

    2006-01-01

    To support a 90-day surface mission for two robotic rovers, the Mars Exploration Rover mission designed and implemented an intensive tactical operations process, enabling daily commanding of each rover. Using a combination of new processes, custom software tools, a Mars-time staffing schedule, and seven-day-a-week operations, the MER team was able to compress the traditional weeks-long command-turnaround for a deep space robotic mission to about 18 hours. However, there was never an intention of maintaining the pace of this process indefinitely. Even before the end of the three-month prime mission, MER operations began evolving towards greater sustainability. A combination of continued software tool development, increasing team experience, and availability of reusable sequences first reduced the mean process duration to approximately 11 hours. The number of workshifts required to perform the process dropped, and the team returned to a modified 'Earth-time' schedule. Additional process and tool adaptation eventually provided the option of planning multiple Martian days of activity within a single workshift, making 5- day-a-week operations possible. The vast majority of the science team returned to their home institutions, continuing to participate fully in the tactical operations process remotely. MER has continued to operate for over two Earth-years as many of its key personnel have moved on to other projects, the operations team and budget have shrunk, and the rovers have begun to exhibit symptoms of aging.

  12. Identification of human neutralizing antibodies against MERS-CoV and their role in virus adaptive evolution

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Xian-Chun; Agnihothram, Sudhakar S.; Jiao, Yongjun; Stanhope, Jeremy; Graham, Rachel L.; Peterson, Eric C.; Avnir, Yuval; Tallarico, Aimee St. Clair; Sheehan, Jared; Zhu, Quan; Baric, Ralph S.; Marasco, Wayne A.

    2014-01-01

    The newly emerging Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes a Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome-like disease with ∼43% mortality. Given the recent detection of virus in dromedary camels, zoonotic transfer of MERS-CoV to humans is suspected. In addition, little is known about the role of human neutralizing Ab (nAb) pressure as a driving force in MERS-CoV adaptive evolution. Here, we used a well-characterized nonimmune human Ab-phage library and a panning strategy with proteoliposomes and cells to identify seven human nAbs against the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the MERS-CoV Spike protein. These nAbs bind to three different epitopes in the RBD and human dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (hDPP4) interface with subnanomolar/nanomolar binding affinities and block the binding of MERS-CoV Spike protein with its hDPP4 receptor. Escape mutant assays identified five amino acid residues that are critical for neutralization escape. Despite the close proximity of the three epitopes on the RBD interface, escape from one epitope did not have a major impact on neutralization with Abs directed to a different epitope. Importantly, the majority of escape mutations had negative impacts on hDPP4 receptor binding and viral fitness. To our knowledge, these results provide the first report on human nAbs against MERS-CoV that may contribute to MERS-CoV clearance and evolution. Moreover, in the absence of a licensed vaccine or antiviral for MERS, this panel of nAbs offers the possibility of developing human mAb-based immunotherapy, especially for health-care workers. PMID:24778221

  13. Jamming and percolation in generalized models of random sequential adsorption of linear k -mers on a square lattice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lebovka, Nikolai I.; Tarasevich, Yuri Yu.; Dubinin, Dmitri O.; Laptev, Valeri V.; Vygornitskii, Nikolai V.

    2015-12-01

    The jamming and percolation for two generalized models of random sequential adsorption (RSA) of linear k -mers (particles occupying k adjacent sites) on a square lattice are studied by means of Monte Carlo simulation. The classical RSA model assumes the absence of overlapping of the new incoming particle with the previously deposited ones. The first model is a generalized variant of the RSA model for both k -mers and a lattice with defects. Some of the occupying k adjacent sites are considered as insulating and some of the lattice sites are occupied by defects (impurities). For this model even a small concentration of defects can inhibit percolation for relatively long k -mers. The second model is the cooperative sequential adsorption one where, for each new k -mer, only a restricted number of lateral contacts z with previously deposited k -mers is allowed. Deposition occurs in the case when z ≤(1 -d ) zm where zm=2 (k +1 ) is the maximum numbers of the contacts of k -mer, and d is the fraction of forbidden contacts. Percolation is observed only at some interval kmin≤k ≤kmax where the values kmin and kmax depend upon the fraction of forbidden contacts d . The value kmax decreases as d increases. A logarithmic dependence of the type log10(kmax) =a +b d , where a =4.04 ±0.22 ,b =-4.93 ±0.57 , is obtained.

  14. Short communication: Measuring the angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitory activity of an 8-amino acid (8mer) fragment of the C12 antihypertensive peptide.

    PubMed

    Paul, Moushumi; Phillips, John G; Renye, John A

    2016-05-01

    An 8-AA (8mer) fragment (PFPEVFGK) of a known antihypertensive peptide derived from bovine αS1-casein (C12 antihypertensive peptide) was synthesized by microwave-assisted solid-phase peptide synthesis and purified by reverse phase HPLC. Its ability to inhibit angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) was assessed and compared with that of the parent 12mer peptide (FFVAPFPEVFGK) to determine the effect of truncating the sequence on overall hypotensive activity. The activity of the truncated 8mer peptide was found to be almost 1.5 times less active than that of the 12mer, with ACE-inhibiting IC50 (half-maximal inhibitory concentration) values of 108 and 69μM, for the 8mer and 12mer, respectively. Although the 8mer peptide is less active than the original 12mer peptide, its overall activity is comparable to activities reported for other small proteins that elicit physiological responses within humans. These results suggest that microbial degradation of the 12mer peptide would not result in a complete loss of antihypertensive activity if used to supplement fermented foods and that the stable 8mer peptide could have potential as a blood pressure-lowering agent for use in functional foods. PMID:26971162

  15. NMR structural studies reveal a novel protein fold for MerB, the organomercurial lyase involved in the bacterial mercury resistance system.

    PubMed

    Di Lello, Paola; Benison, Gregory C; Valafar, Homayoun; Pitts, Keith E; Summers, Anne O; Legault, Pascale; Omichinski, James G

    2004-07-01

    Mercury resistant bacteria have developed a system of two enzymes (MerA and MerB), which allows them to efficiently detoxify both ionic and organomercurial compounds. The organomercurial lyase (MerB) catalyzes the protonolysis of the carbon-mercury bond resulting in the formation of ionic mercury and a reduced hydrocarbon. The ionic mercury [Hg(II)] is subsequently reduced to the less reactive elemental mercury [Hg(0)] by a specific mercuric reductase (MerA). To better understand MerB's unique enzymatic activity, we used nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to determine the structure of the free enzyme. MerB is characterized by a novel protein fold consisting of three noninteracting antiparallel beta-sheets surrounded by six alpha-helices. By comparing the NMR data of free MerB and the MerB/Hg/DTT complex, we identified a set of residues that likely define a Hg/DTT binding site. These residues cluster around two cysteines (C(96) and C(159)) that are crucial to MerB's catalytic activity. A detailed analysis of the structure revealed the presence of an extensive hydrophobic groove adjacent to this Hg/DTT binding site. This extensive hydrophobic groove has the potential to interact with the hydrocarbon moiety of a wide variety of substrates and may explain the broad substrate specificity of MerB. PMID:15222745

  16. Mass dependent stable isotope fractionation of mercury during mer mediated microbial degradation of monomethylmercury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kritee, K.; Barkay, Tamar; Blum, Joel D.

    2009-03-01

    Controlling bioaccumulation of toxic monomethylmercury (MMHg) in aquatic food chains requires differentiation between biotic and abiotic pathways that lead to its production and degradation. Recent mercury (Hg) stable isotope measurements of natural samples suggest that Hg isotope ratios can be a powerful proxy for tracing dominant Hg transforming pathways in aquatic ecosystems. Specifically, it has been shown that photo-degradation of MMHg causes both mass dependent (MDF) and mass independent fractionation (MIF) of Hg isotopes. Because the extent of MDF and MIF observed in natural samples (e.g., fish, soil and sediments) can potentially be used to determine the relative importance of pathways leading to MMHg accumulation, it is important to determine the potential role of microbial pathways in contributing to the fractionation, especially MIF, observed in these samples. This study reports the extent of fractionation of Hg stable isotopes during degradation of MMHg to volatile elemental Hg and methane via the microbial Hg resistance ( mer) pathway in Escherichia coli carrying a mercury resistance ( mer) genetic system on a multi-copy plasmid. During experimental microbial degradation of MMHg, MMHg remaining in reactors became progressively heavier (increasing δ202Hg) with time and underwent mass dependent Rayleigh fractionation with a fractionation factor α202/198 = 1.0004 ± 0.0002 (2SD). However, MIF was not observed in any of the microbial MMHg degradation experiments indicating that the isotopic signature left by mer mediated MMHg degradation is significantly different from fractionation observed during DOC mediated photo-degradation of MMHg. Additionally, a clear suppression of Hg isotope fractionation, both during reduction of Hg(II) and degradation of MMHg, was observed when the cell densities increased, possibly due to a reduction in substrate bioavailability. We propose a multi-step framework for understanding the extent of fractionation seen in our MMHg

  17. A safe and convenient pseudovirus-based inhibition assay to detect neutralizing antibodies and screen for viral entry inhibitors against the novel human coronavirus MERS-CoV

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Evidence points to the emergence of a novel human coronavirus, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), which causes a severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-like disease. In response, the development of effective vaccines and therapeutics remains a clinical priority. To accomplish this, it is necessary to evaluate neutralizing antibodies and screen for MERS-CoV entry inhibitors. Methods In this study, we produced a pseudovirus bearing the full-length spike (S) protein of MERS-CoV in the Env-defective, luciferase-expressing HIV-1 backbone. We then established a pseudovirus-based inhibition assay to detect neutralizing antibodies and anti-MERS-CoV entry inhibitors. Results Our results demonstrated that the generated MERS-CoV pseudovirus allows for single-cycle infection of a variety of cells expressing dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP4), the confirmed receptor for MERS-CoV. Consistent with the results from a live MERS-CoV-based inhibition assay, the antisera of mice vaccinated with a recombinant protein containing receptor-binding domain (RBD, residues 377–662) of MERS-CoV S fused with Fc of human IgG exhibited neutralizing antibody response against infection of MERS-CoV pseudovirus. Furthermore, one small molecule HIV entry inhibitor targeting gp41 (ADS-J1) and the 3-hydroxyphthalic anhydride-modified human serum albumin (HP-HSA) could significantly inhibit MERS-CoV pseudovirus infection. Conclusion Taken together, the established MERS-CoV inhibition assay is a safe and convenient pseudovirus-based alternative to BSL-3 live-virus restrictions and can be used to rapidly screen MERS-CoV entry inhibitors, as well as evaluate vaccine-induced neutralizing antibodies against the highly pathogenic MERS-CoV. PMID:23978242

  18. Percolation and jamming of linear k-mers on a square lattice with defects: Effect of anisotropy.

    PubMed

    Tarasevich, Yuri Yu; Burmistrov, Andrei S; Shinyaeva, Taisiya S; Laptev, Valeri V; Vygornitskii, Nikolai V; Lebovka, Nikolai I

    2015-12-01

    Using the Monte Carlo simulation, we study the percolation and jamming of oriented linear k-mers on a square lattice that contains defects. The point defects with a concentration d are placed randomly and uniformly on the substrate before deposition of the k-mers. The general case of unequal probabilities for orientation of depositing of k-mers along different directions of the lattice is analyzed. Two different relaxation models of deposition that preserve the predetermined order parameter s are used. In the relaxation random sequential adsorption (RRSA) model, the deposition of k-mers is distributed over different sites on the substrate. In the single-cluster relaxation (RSC) model, the single cluster grows by the random accumulation of k-mers on the boundary of the cluster (Eden-like model). For both models, a suppression of growth of the infinite (percolation) cluster at some critical concentration of defects d(c) is observed. In the zero-defect lattices, the jamming concentration p(j) (RRSA model) and the density of single clusters p(s) (RSC model) decrease with increasing length k-mers and with a decrease in the order parameter. For the RRSA model, the value of d(c) decreases for short k-mers (k<16) as the value of s increases. For k=16 and 32, the value of d(c) is almost independent of s. Moreover, for short k-mers, the percolation threshold is almost insensitive to the defect concentration for all values of s. For the RSC model, the growth of clusters with ellipselike shapes is observed for nonzero values of s. The density of the clusters p(s) at the critical concentration of defects d(c) depends in a complex manner on the values of s and k. An interesting finding for disordered systems (s=0) is that the value of p(s) tends towards zero in the limits of the very long k-mers, k→∞, and very small critical concentrations d(c)→0. In this case, the introduction of defects results in a suppression of k-mer stacking and in the formation of empty or loose

  19. Protection of rat liver against hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury by a novel selenocysteine-containing 7-mer peptide

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Qianqian; Pan, Yu; Cheng, Yupeng; Li, Huiling; Li, Hui

    2016-01-01

    Hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (I-R) injury causes acute organ damage or dysfunction, and remains a problem for liver transplantation. In the I-R phase, the generation of reactive oxygen species aggravates the injury. In the current study, a novel selenocysteine-containing 7-mer peptide (H-Arg-Sec-Gly-Arg-Asn-Ala-Gln-OH) was constructed to imitate the active site of an antioxidant enzyme, glutathione peroxidase (GPX). The 7-mer peptide which has a lower molecular weight, and improved water-solubility, higher stability and improved cell membrane permeability compared with other GPX mimics. Its GPX activity reached 13 U/µmol, which was 13 times that of ebselen (a representative GPX mimic). The effect of this GPX mimic on I-R injury of the liver was assessed in rats. The 7-mer peptide significantly inhibited the increase in serum hepatic amino-transferases, tissue malondialdehyde, nitric oxide contents, myeloperoxidase activity and decrease of GPX activity compared with I-R tissue. Following treatment with the 7-mer peptide, the expression of B-cell CLL/lymphoma-2 (Bcl-2) was significantly upregulated at the mRNA and protein level compared with the I-R group, as determined by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and immunohistochemistry, respectively. By contrast, Bcl-2 associated X protein (Bax) was downregulated by the 7-mer peptide compared the I-R group. Histological and ultrastructural changes of the rat liver tissue were also compared among the experimental groups. The results of the current study suggest that the 7-mer peptide protected the liver against hepatic I-R injury via suppression of oxygen-derived free radicals and regulation of Bcl-2 and Bax expression, which are involved in the apoptosis of liver cells. The findings of the present study will further the investigation of the 7-mer peptide as an effective therapeutic agent in hepatic I-R injury. PMID:27431272

  20. [Molecular diagnosis and phylogenetic analysis of the first MERS case in Turkey].

    PubMed

    Bayrakdar, Fatma; Altaş, Ayşe Başak; Korukluoğlu, Gülay; Topal, Selmur

    2015-07-01

    Coronaviruses (CoV) are enveloped, spherical, single-stranded positive-sense RNA viruses causing mainly respiratory and intestinal infections in animals and humans. Until recently five types of human coronaviruses (HCoV-OC43, HCoV-HKU1, HCoV-NL63, HCoV-229E, SARS-CoV) have been known, however a novel CoV has been identified in 2012 in Saudi Arabia. This virus, namely MERS-CoV (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus), was classified within Coronaviridae family, Coronavirinae sub-family, Betacoronavirus genus, clade C. It causes acute respiratory infections in humans and transmits via respiratory route and close contact between humans. The aim of this study was to present the first MERS case from Turkey identified by molecular methods and the results of viral sequence analysis. A 42-year-old male Turkish citizen who worked as an employee in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, admitted to hospital with the complaints of fever and malaise on 25-26 September 2014. Since his symptoms went on and got worse, he returned to Turkey, and hospitalized in a hospital's intensive care unit in Hatay on 6th of October with the symptoms of fever, malaise, sweating, cough and respiratory distress. He transferred to a university hospital on 8th of October and died on 11th October. The tracheal aspirate sample obtained before he died was sent to Virology Unit of Reference Laboratories of the Turkish Public Health Institution. Detection of viral RNA was performed by using a commercial real-time PCR kit (hCoV-EMC Real-Time RT-PCR, Fast Track Diagnostics, Luxembourg) targeting the MERS-CoV E protein (upE), ORF1a and ORF1b gene regions. The reference method Superscript III One Step RT-PCR (Invitrogen, USA) recommended by World Health Organization (WHO) was also applied for confirmation. Both of the methods yielded positive results for MERS-CoV RNA. For the amplification of nucleocapsid (N) and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) genes, hemi-nested PCR (Invitrogen, ABD) was conducted

  1. Efficient Design of Compact Unstructured RNA Libraries Covering All k-mers

    PubMed Central

    Orenstein, Yaron

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Current microarray technologies to determine RNA structure or measure protein–RNA interactions rely on single-stranded, unstructured RNA probes on a chip covering together all k-mers. Since space on the array is limited, the problem is to efficiently design a compact library of unstructured ℓ-long RNA probes, where each k-mer is covered at least p times. Ray et al. designed such a library for specific values of k, ℓ, and p using ad-hoc rules. To our knowledge, there is no general method to date to solve this problem. Here, we address the problem of finding a minimum-size covering of all k-mers by ℓ-long sequences with the desired properties for any value of k, ℓ, and p. As we prove that the problem is NP-hard, we give two solutions: the first is a greedy algorithm with a logarithmic approximation ratio; the second, a heuristic greedy approach based on random walks in de Bruijn graphs. The heuristic algorithm works well in practice and produces a library of unstructured RNA probes that is only ∼1.1-times greater in size compared to the theoretical lower bound. We present results for typical values of k and probe lengths ℓ and show that our algorithm generates a library that is significantly smaller than the library of Ray et al.; moreover, we show that our algorithm outperforms naive methods. Our approach can be generalized and extended to generate RNA or DNA oligo libraries with other desired properties. The software is freely available online. PMID:26713687

  2. The Amorphous Component in Martian Basaltic Soil in Global Perspective from MSL and MER Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, R. V.; Ming, D. W.; Blake, D. F.; Vaniman, D. T.; Bish, D. L.; Chipera, S. J.; Downs, R. T.; Gellert, R.; Treiman, A. H.; Yen, A. S.; Achilles, C. N.; Anderson, R. C.; Bristow, T. F.; Crisp, J. A.; Des Marais, D. J.; Farmer, J. D.; Grotzinger, J. P.; Leshin, L. A.; McAdam, A. C.; Morookian, J. M.; Morrison, S. M.; Rampe, E. B.; Sarrazin, P. C.; Spanovich, N.; Stolper, E. M.

    2013-01-01

    The mineralogy instrument CheMin onboard the MSL rover Curiosity analyzed by transmission XRD [1] the <150 microns size fraction of putative global basaltic martian soil from scoops 4 and 5 of the Rocknest aeolian bedform (sol 81-120). Here, we combine chemical (APXS) and mineralogical (Mossbauer; MB) results from the MER rovers with chemical (APXS) and mineralogical (CheMin) results from Curiosity to constrain the relative proportions of amorphous and crystalline components, the bulk chemical composition of those components, and the

  3. 2015 Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) nosocomial outbreak in South Korea: insights from modeling

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background. Since the emergence of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012, more than 1,300 laboratory confirmed cases of MERS-CoV infections have been reported in Asia, North Africa, and Europe by July 2015. The recent MERS-CoV nosocomial outbreak in South Korea quickly became the second largest such outbreak with 186 total cases and 36 deaths in a little more than one month, second only to Saudi Arabia in country-specific number of reported cases. Methods. We use a simple mathematical model, the Richards model, to trace the temporal course of the South Korea MERS-CoV outbreak. We pinpoint its outbreak turning point and its transmissibility via basic reproduction number R0 in order to ascertain the occurrence of this nosocomial outbreak and how it was quickly brought under control. Results. The estimated outbreak turning point of ti = 23.3 days (95% CI [22.6–24.0]), or 23–24 days after the onset date of the index case on May 11, pinpoints June 3–4 as the time of the turning point or the peak incidence for this outbreak by onset date. R0 is estimated to range between 7.0 and 19.3. Discussion and Conclusion. The turning point of the South Korea MERS-CoV outbreak occurred around May 27–29, when control measures were quickly implemented after laboratory confirmation of the first cluster of nosocomial infections by the index patient. Furthermore, transmissibility of MERS-CoV in the South Korea outbreak was significantly higher than those reported from past MERS-CoV outbreaks in the Middle East, which is attributable to the nosocomial nature of this outbreak. Our estimate of R0 for the South Korea MERS-CoV nosocomial outbreak further highlights the importance and the risk involved in cluster infections and superspreading events in crowded settings such as hospitals. Similar to the 2003 SARS epidemic, outbreaks of infectious diseases with low community transmissibility like MERS-CoV could still occur initially with large clusters of

  4. Effects of APP 5-mer peptide analogue P165 on the synaptic proteins and insulin signal transduction proteins

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Bo; Hu, Peng; Lu, Shu-Jun; Wang, Rong; Du, Yi-Feng

    2014-01-01

    Diabetic encephalopathy (DE) is one of risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Our previous findings indicated that DE animals had impairment of learning and memory and degeneration of hippocampal neurons, which could be improved by neurotrophic peptide. APP 17-mer peptide is a synthesized peptide sequenced from soluble amyloid precursor protein. APP 17-mer peptide has neural protective effect, but is susceptible to enzyme degradation. Soluble APP 5-mer peptide is the active form of APP 17-mer peptide, and composed of arginine, glutamic acid, arginine, methionine and serine. P165, an APP 5-mer peptide analog reconstructed by our lab, is resistant to enzyme degradation, and can be orally used to protect neurons. In the present study, high glucose and Aβ25-35 were used to cause injury to human neuroblastoma cell line SH-SY5Y in vitro, and streptozotocin was used to induce diabetes in mice in vivo. The changes in synaptic proteins and proteins of insulin signal transduction which closely correlate with learning and memory were detected in these cells and the brain of mice. Results showed that P165 could up-regulate the expression of α-synuclein and insulin receptor (IR), down-regulate the expression of insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1), PSD-95, Shank1 and MAPK expression. All these findings suggest that nicorandil might be a potential drug used for the treatment of AD. PMID:24753747

  5. Transport of localized and extended excitations in chains embedded with randomly distributed linear and nonlinear n -mers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López-González, Dany; Molina, Mario I.

    2016-03-01

    We examine the transport of extended and localized excitations in one-dimensional linear chains populated by linear and nonlinear symmetric identical n -mers (with n =3 , 4, 5, and 6), randomly distributed. First, we examine the transmission of plane waves across a single linear n -mer, paying attention to its resonances, and looking for parameters that allow resonances to merge. Within this parameter regime we examine the transmission of plane waves through a disordered and nonlinear segment composed by n -mers randomly placed inside a linear chain. It is observed that nonlinearity tends to inhibit the transmission, which decays as a power law at long segment lengths. This behavior still holds when the n -mer parameters do not obey the resonance condition. On the other hand, the mean square displacement exponent of an initially localized excitation does not depend on nonlinearity at long propagation distances z , and shows a superdiffusive behavior ˜z1.8 for all n -mers, when parameters obey the resonance merging condition; otherwise the exponent reverts back to the random dimer model value ˜z1.5 .

  6. The heptad repeat region is a major selection target in MERS-CoV and related coronaviruses

    PubMed Central

    Forni, Diego; Filippi, Giulia; Cagliani, Rachele; De Gioia, Luca; Pozzoli, Uberto; Al-Daghri, Nasser; Clerici, Mario; Sironi, Manuela

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) originated in bats and spread to humans via zoonotic transmission from camels. We analyzed the evolution of the spike (S) gene in betacoronaviruses (betaCoVs) isolated from different mammals, in bat coronavirus populations, as well as in MERS-CoV strains from the current outbreak. Results indicated several positively selected sites located in the region comprising the two heptad repeats (HR1 and HR2) and their linker. Two sites (R652 and V1060) were positively selected in the betaCoVs phylogeny and correspond to mutations associated with expanded host range in other coronaviruses. During the most recent evolution of MERS-CoV, adaptive mutations in the HR1 (Q/R/H1020) arose in camels or in a previous host and spread to humans. We determined that different residues at position 1020 establish distinct inter- and intra-helical interactions and affect the stability of the six-helix bundle formed by the HRs. A similar effect on stability was observed for a nearby mutation (T1015N) that increases MERS-CoV infection efficiency in vitro. Data herein indicate that the heptad repeat region was a major target of adaptive evolution in MERS-CoV-related viruses; these results are relevant for the design of fusion inhibitor peptides with antiviral function. PMID:26404138

  7. A 17-mer Membrane-Active MSI-78 Derivative with Improved Selectivity toward Bacterial Cells.

    PubMed

    Monteiro, Claudia; Pinheiro, Marina; Fernandes, Mariana; Maia, Sílvia; Seabra, Catarina L; Ferreira-da-Silva, Frederico; Reis, Salette; Gomes, Paula; Martins, M Cristina L

    2015-08-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are widely recognized as an excellent alternative to conventional antibiotics. MSI-78, a highly effective and broad spectrum AMP, is one of the most promising AMPs for clinical application. In this study, we have designed shorter derivatives of MSI-78 with the aim of improving selectivity while maintaining antimicrobial activity. Shorter 17-mer derivatives were created by truncating MSI-78 at the N- and/or C-termini, while spanning MSI-78 sequence. Despite the truncations made, we found a 17-mer peptide, MSI-78(4-20) (KFLKKAKKFGKAFVKIL), which was demonstrated to be as effective as MSI-78 against the Gram-positive Staphylococcus strains tested and the Gram-negative Pseudomonas aeruginosa. This shorter derivative is more selective toward bacterial cells as it was less toxic to erythrocytes than MSI-78, representing an improved version of the lead peptide. Biophysical studies support a mechanism of action for MSI-78(4-20) based on the disruption of the bacterial membrane permeability barrier, which in turn leads to loss of membrane integrity and ultimately to cell death. These features point to a mechanism of action similar to the one described for the lead peptide MSI-78. PMID:26066462

  8. The emergence of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV)

    PubMed Central

    Milne-Price, Shauna; Miazgowicz, Kerri L.; Munster, Vincent J.

    2014-01-01

    On September 20, 2012, a Saudi Arabian physician reported the isolation of a novel coronavirus from a patient with pneumonia on ProMED-mail. Within a few days the same virus was detected in a Qatari patient receiving intensive care in a London hospital, a situation reminiscent of the role air travel played in the spread of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in 2002. SARS-CoV originated in China’s Guangdong Province and affected more than 8000 patients in 26 countries before it was contained six months later. Over a year after the emergence of this novel coronavirus—Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV)—it has caused 178 laboratory confirmed cases and 76 deaths The emergence of a second highly pathogenic coronavirus within a decade highlights the importance of a coordinated global response incorporating reservoir surveillance, high-containment capacity with fundamental and applied research programs, and dependable communication pathways to ensure outbreak containment. Here we review the current state of knowledge on the epidemiology, ecology, molecular biology, clinical features and intervention strategies of the novel coronavirus, MERS-CoV. PMID:24585737

  9. A lesson learned from Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Al Shehri, Ali M

    2015-04-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) caused by novel Corona virus hit Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and resulted in hundreds of mortality and morbidity, fears and psychosocial stress among population, economic loss and major political change at Ministry of Health (MoH). Although MERS discovered two years ago, confusion still exists about its origin, nature, and consequences. In 2003, similar virus (SARS) hit Canada and resulted in a reform of Canada's public health system and creation of a Canadian Agency for Public Health, similar to the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The idea of Saudi CDC is attractive and even "sexy" but it is not the best option. Experience and literature indicate that the best option for KSA is to revitalize national public health systems on the basis of comprehensive, continuing, and integrated primary health care (PHC) and public health (PH). This article proposes three initial, but essential, steps for such revitalization to take place: political will and support, integration of PHC and PH, and on-job professional programs for the workforce. In addition, current academic and training programs for PHC and PH should be revisited in the light of national vision and strategy that aim for high quality products that protect and promote healthy nation. Scientific associations, medical education research chair, and relevant academic bodies should be involved in the revitalization to ensure quality of process and outcomes. PMID:25803593

  10. Seasonal Variation of Aerosol Particle Size Using MER/Pancam Sky Imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, M. D.; Wolff, M. J.

    2013-12-01

    Imaging of the sky taken by the Pancam cameras on-board the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) provide a useful tool for determining the optical depth and physcial properties of aerosols above the rover. Specifically, the brightness of the sky as a function of angle away from the Sun provides a powerful constraint on the size distribution and shape of dust and water ice aerosols. More than 100 Pancam "sky surveys" were taken by each of the two MER rovers covering a time span of several Mars years and a wide range of dust loading conditions including the planet-encirclind dust storm during Mars Year 28 (Earth year 2007). These sky surveys enable the time evolution of aerosol particle size to be determined including its relation to dust loading. Radiative transfer modeling is used to model the observations. Synthetic Pancam sky brightness is computed using a discrete-ordinates radiative transfer code that accounts for multiple scattering from aerosols and spherical geometry by integrating the source functions along curved paths in that coordinate system. We find that Mie scattering from spheres is not a good approximation for describing the angular variation of sky brightness far from the Sun (at scattering angles greater than 45 degrees). Significant seasonal variations are seen in the retrieved effective radius of the aerosols with higher optical depth strongly correlated with larger particle size.

  11. Application of State Analysis and Goal-based Operations to a MER Mission Scenario

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, John Richard; Ingham, Michel D.; Mishkin, Andrew H.; Rasmussen, Robert D.; Starbird, Thomas W.

    2006-01-01

    State Analysis is a model-based systems engineering methodology employing a rigorous discovery process which articulates operations concepts and operability needs as an integrated part of system design. The process produces requirements on system and software design in the form of explicit models which describe the system behavior in terms of state variables and the relationships among them. By applying State Analysis to an actual MER flight mission scenario, this study addresses the specific real world challenges of complex space operations and explores technologies that can be brought to bear on future missions. The paper first describes the tools currently used on a daily basis for MER operations planning and provides an in-depth description of the planning process, in the context of a Martian day's worth of rover engineering activities, resource modeling, flight rules, science observations, and more. It then describes how State Analysis allows for the specification of a corresponding goal-based sequence that accomplishes the same objectives, with several important additional benefits.

  12. Evaluation of 50-mer oligonucleotide arrays for detectingmicrobial populations in environmental samples.

    SciTech Connect

    Tiquia, S.M.; Wu, L.; Chong, S.C.; Passovets, S.; Xu, D.; Xu, Y.; Zhou, J.

    2004-03-30

    Microarrays fabricated with oligonucleotides longer than 40bp have been introduced for monitoring whole genome expression but havenot been evaluated with environmental samples. To determine the potentialof this type of microarray for environmental studies, a 50-meroligonucleotide microarray was constructed using 763 genes involved innitrogen cycling: nitrite reductase (nirS and nirK), ammoniamonooxygenase (amoA), nitrogenase (nifH), methane monooxygenase (pmoA),and sulfite reductase (dsrAB) from public databases and our own sequencecollections. The comparison of the sequences from pure cultures indicatedthat the developed microarrays could provide species-level resolution foranalyzing microorganisms involved in nitrification, denitrification,nitrogen fixation, methane oxidation, and sulfite reduction. Sensitivitytests suggested that the 50-mer oligonucleotide arrays could detectdominant populations in the environments, although sensitivity stillneeds to be improved. A significant quantitative relationship was alsoobtained with a mixture of DNAs from eight different bacteria. Theseresults suggest that the 50-mer oligonucleotide array can be used as aspecific and quantitative parallel tool for the detection of microbialpopulations in environmental samples.

  13. High-Resolution Topomapping of Mars: Life After MER Site Selection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirk, R. L.; Howington-Kraus, E.; Hare, T. M.; Soricone, R.; Ross, K.; Weller, L.; Rosiek, M.; Redding, B.; Galuszka, D.; Haldemann, A. F. C.

    2004-01-01

    In this abstract we describe our ongoing use of high-resolution images from the Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera Narrow-Angle subsystem (MGS MOC-NA) to derive quantitative topographic and slope data for the martian surface at 3 - 10-m resolution. Our efforts over the past several years focused on assessment of candidate landing sites for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) and culminated in the selection of sites in Gusev crater and Meridiani Planum as safe as well as scientifically compelling. As of this writing, MER-A (Spirit) has landed safely in Gusev and we are performing a limited amount of additional mapping near the landing point to support localization of the lander and rover operations planning. The primary focus of our work, however, has been extending our techniques to sample a variety of geologic terrains planetwide to support both a variety of geoscientific studies and planning and data analysis for missions such as Mars Express, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and Phoenix.

  14. Characterization of Immunodominant BK Polyomavirus 9mer Epitope T Cell Responses.

    PubMed

    Cioni, M; Leboeuf, C; Comoli, P; Ginevri, F; Hirsch, H H

    2016-04-01

    Uncontrolled BK polyomavirus (BKPyV) replication in kidney transplant recipients (KTRs) causes polyomavirus-associated nephropathy and allograft loss. Reducing immunosuppression is associated with clearing viremia and nephropathy and increasing BKPyV-specific T cell responses in most patients; however, current immunoassays have limited sensitivity, target mostly CD4(+) T cells, and largely fail to predict onset and clearance of BKPyV replication. To characterize BKPyV-specific CD8(+) T cells, bioinformatics were used to predict 9mer epitopes in the early viral gene region (EVGR) presented by 14 common HLAs in Europe and North America. Thirty-nine EVGR epitopes were experimentally confirmed by interferon-γ enzyme-linked immunospot assays in at least 30% of BKPyV IgG-seropositive healthy participants. Most 9mers clustered in domains, and some were presented by more than one HLA class I, as typically seen for immunodominant epitopes. Specific T cell binding using MHC class I streptamers was demonstrated for 21 of 39 (54%) epitopes. In a prospective cohort of 118 pediatric KTRs, 19 patients protected or recovering from BKPyV viremia were experimentally tested, and 13 epitopes were validated. Single HLA mismatches were not associated with viremia, suggesting that failing immune control likely involves multiple factors including maintenance immunosuppression. Combining BKPyV load and T cell assays using immunodominant epitopes may help in evaluating risk and reducing immunosuppression and may lead to safe adoptive T cell transfer. PMID:26663765

  15. MERS-CoV in Upper Respiratory Tract and Lungs of Dromedary Camels, Saudi Arabia, 2013–2014

    PubMed Central

    Khalafalla, Abdelmalik I.; Lu, Xiaoyan; Al-Mubarak, Abdullah I.A.; Dalab, Abdul Hafeed S.; Al-Busadah, Khalid A.S.

    2015-01-01

    To assess the temporal dynamics of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection in dromedary camels, specimens were collected at 1–2 month intervals from 2 independent groups of animals during April 2013–May 2014 in Al-Ahsa Province, Saudi Arabia, and tested for MERS-CoV RNA by reverse transcription PCR. Of 96 live camels, 28 (29.2%) nasal swab samples were positive; of 91 camel carcasses, 56 (61.5%) lung tissue samples were positive. Positive samples were more commonly found among young animals (<4 years of age) than adults (>4 years of age). The proportions of positive samples varied by month for both groups; detection peaked during November 2013 and January 2014 and declined in March and May 2014. These findings further our understanding of MERS-CoV infection in dromedary camels and may help inform intervention strategies to reduce zoonotic infections. PMID:26079346

  16. Overview of preparedness and response for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in Oman.

    PubMed

    Al-Abaidani, I S; Al-Maani, A S; Al-Kindi, H S; Al-Jardani, A K; Abdel-Hady, D M; Zayed, B E; Al-Harthy, K S; Al-Shaqsi, K H; Al-Abri, S S

    2014-12-01

    Several countries in the Middle East and around 22 countries worldwide have reported cases of human infection with the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). The exceptionally high fatality rate resulting from MERS-CoV infection in conjunction with the paucity of knowledge about this emerging virus has led to major public and international concern. Within the framework of the national acute respiratory illness surveillance, the Ministry of Health in the Sultanate of Oman has announced two confirmed cases of MERS-CoV to date. The aim of this report is to describe the epidemiological aspects of these two cases and to highlight the importance of public health preparedness and response. The absence of secondary cases among contacts of the reported cases can be seen as evidence of the effectiveness of infection prevention and control precautions as an important pillar of the national preparedness and response plan applied in the health care institutions in Oman. PMID:25447719

  17. The Effects of the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) Work Schedule Regime on Locomotor Activity Circadian Rhythms, Sleep and Fatigue

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DeRoshia, Charles W.; Colletti, Laura C.; Mallis, Melissa M.

    2008-01-01

    This study assessed human adaptation to a Mars sol by evaluating sleep metrics obtained by actigraphy and subjective responses in 22 participants, and circadian rhythmicity in locomotor activity in 9 participants assigned to Mars Exploration Rover (MER) operational work schedules (24.65 hour days) at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 2004. During MER operations, increased work shift durations and reduced sleep durations and time in bed were associated with the appearance of pronounced 12-hr (circasemidian) rhythms with reduced activity levels. Sleep duration, workload, and circadian rhythm stability have important implications for adaptability and maintenance of operational performance not only of MER operations personnel but also in space crews exposed to a Mars sol of 24.65 hours during future Mars missions.

  18. Identification of residues on human receptor DPP4 critical for MERS-CoV binding and entry

    SciTech Connect

    Song, Wenfei; Wang, Ying; Wang, Nianshuang; Wang, Dongli; Guo, Jianying; Fu, Lili; Shi, Xuanling

    2014-12-15

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infects host cells through binding the receptor binding domain (RBD) on its spike glycoprotein to human receptor dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (hDPP4). Here, we report identification of critical residues on hDPP4 for RBD binding and virus entry through analysis of a panel of hDPP4 mutants. Based on the RBD–hDPP4 crystal structure we reported, the mutated residues were located at the interface between RBD and hDPP4, which potentially changed the polarity, hydrophobic or hydrophilic properties of hDPP4, thereby interfering or disrupting their interaction with RBD. Using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) binding analysis and pseudovirus infection assay, we showed that several residues in hDPP4–RBD binding interface were important on hDPP4–RBD binding and viral entry. These results provide atomic insights into the features of interactions between hDPP4 and MERS-CoV RBD, and also provide potential explanation for cellular and species tropism of MERS-CoV infection. - Highlights: • It has been demonstrated that MERS-CoV infects host cells through binding its envelope spike (S) glycoprotein to the host cellular receptor dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4). • To identify the critical residues on hDPP4 for RBD binding and virus entry, we constructed a panel of hDPP4 mutants based on structure-guided mutagenesis. • Using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) binding analysis and pseudovirus infection assay, we showed that several residues on hDPP4 had significant impacts on virus/receptor interactions and viral entry. • Our study has provided new insights into the features of interactions between hDPP4 and MERS-CoV RBD, and provides potential explanation for cellular and species tropism of MERS-CoV infection.

  19. Critical Assessment of the Important Residues Involved in the Dimerization and Catalysis of MERS Coronavirus Main Protease

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Bo-Lin; Cheng, Shu-Chun; Shi, Lin; Wang, Ting-Yun; Ho, Kuan-I; Chou, Chi-Yuan

    2015-01-01

    Background A highly pathogenic human coronavirus (CoV), Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), has emerged in Jeddah and other places in Saudi Arabia, and has quickly spread to European and Asian countries since September 2012. Up to the 1st October 2015 it has infected at least 1593 people with a global fatality rate of about 35%. Studies to understand the virus are necessary and urgent. In the present study, MERS-CoV main protease (Mpro) is expressed; the dimerization of the protein and its relationship to catalysis are investigated. Methods and Results The crystal structure of MERS-CoV Mpro indicates that it shares a similar scaffold to that of other coronaviral Mpro and consists of chymotrypsin-like domains I and II and a helical domain III of five helices. Analytical ultracentrifugation analysis demonstrated that MERS-CoV Mpro undergoes a monomer to dimer conversion in the presence of a peptide substrate. Glu169 is a key residue and plays a dual role in both dimerization and catalysis. The mutagenesis of other residues found on the dimerization interface indicate that dimerization of MERS-CoV Mpro is required for its catalytic activity. One mutation, M298R, resulted in a stable dimer with a higher level of proteolytic activity than the wild-type enzyme. Conclusions MERS-CoV Mpro shows substrate-induced dimerization and potent proteolytic activity. A critical assessment of the residues important to these processes provides insights into the correlation between dimerization and catalysis within the coronaviral Mpro family. PMID:26658006

  20. Allosteric underwinding of DNA is a critical step in positive control of transcription by Hg-MerR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ansari, Aseem Z.; Chael, Mark L.; O'Halloran, Thomas V.

    1992-01-01

    POSITIVE control of transcription often involves stimulatory protein-protein interactions between regulatory factors and RNA polymerase1. Critical steps in the activation process itself are seldom ascribed to protein-DNA distortions. Activator-induced DNA bending is typically assigned a role in binding-site recognition2, alterations in DNA loop structures3 or optimal positioning of the activator for interaction with polymerase4. Here we present a transcriptional activation mechanism that does not require a signal-induced DNA bend but rather a receptor-induced untwisting of duplex DNA. The allosterically modulated transcription factor MerR is a represser and an Hg(II)-responsive activator of bacterial mercury-resistance genes5-7.Escherichia coliRNA polymerase binds to the MerR-promoter complex but cannot proceed to a transcriptionally active open complex until Hg(II) binds to MerR (ref. 6). Chemical nuclease studies show that the activator form, but not the represser, induces a unique alteration of the helical structure localized at the centre of the DNA-binding site6. Data presented here indicate that this Hg-MerR-induced DNA distortion corresponds to a local underwinding of the spacer region of the promoter by about 33° relative to the MerR-operator complex. The magnitude and the direction of the Hg-MerR-induced change in twist angle are consistent with a positive control mechanism involving reorientation of conserved, but suboptimally phased, promoter elements and are consistent with a role for torsional stress in formation of an open complex.

  1. Jamming and percolation in generalized models of random sequential adsorption of linear k-mers on a square lattice.

    PubMed

    Lebovka, Nikolai I; Tarasevich, Yuri Yu; Dubinin, Dmitri O; Laptev, Valeri V; Vygornitskii, Nikolai V

    2015-12-01

    The jamming and percolation for two generalized models of random sequential adsorption (RSA) of linear k-mers (particles occupying k adjacent sites) on a square lattice are studied by means of Monte Carlo simulation. The classical RSA model assumes the absence of overlapping of the new incoming particle with the previously deposited ones. The first model is a generalized variant of the RSA model for both k-mers and a lattice with defects. Some of the occupying k adjacent sites are considered as insulating and some of the lattice sites are occupied by defects (impurities). For this model even a small concentration of defects can inhibit percolation for relatively long k-mers. The second model is the cooperative sequential adsorption one where, for each new k-mer, only a restricted number of lateral contacts z with previously deposited k-mers is allowed. Deposition occurs in the case when z≤(1-d)z(m) where z(m)=2(k+1) is the maximum numbers of the contacts of k-mer, and d is the fraction of forbidden contacts. Percolation is observed only at some interval k(min)≤k≤k(max) where the values k(min) and k(max) depend upon the fraction of forbidden contacts d. The value k(max) decreases as d increases. A logarithmic dependence of the type log(10)(k(max))=a+bd, where a=4.04±0.22,b=-4.93±0.57, is obtained. PMID:26764641

  2. Distinct Immune Response in Two MERS-CoV-Infected Patients: Can We Go from Bench to Bedside?

    PubMed Central

    Goffard, Anne; Fournier, Clement; Kipnis, Eric; Titecat, Marie; Bortolotti, Perinne; Martinez, Laura; Dubucquoi, Sylvain; Dessein, Rodrigue; Gosset, Philippe; Mathieu, Daniel; Guery, Benoit

    2014-01-01

    One year after the occurrence of the first case of infection by the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) there is no clear consensus on the best treatment to propose. The World Health Organization, as well as several other national agencies, are still working on different clinical approaches to implement the most relevant treatment in MERS-CoV infection. We compared innate and adaptive immune responses of two patients infected with MERS-CoV to understand the underlying mechanisms involved in the response and propose potential therapeutic approaches. Broncho-alveolar lavage (BAL) of the first week and sera of the first month from the two patients were used in this study. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qRTPCR) was performed after extraction of RNA from BAL cells of MERS-CoV infected patients and control patients. BAL supernatants and sera were used to assess cytokines and chemokines secretion by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The first patient died rapidly after 3 weeks in the intensive care unit, the second patient still recovers from infection. The patient with a poor outcome (patient 1), compared to patient 2, did not promote type-1 Interferon (IFN), and particularly IFNα, in response to double stranded RNA (dsRNA) from MERS-CoV. The absence of IFNα, known to promote antigen presentation in response to viruses, impairs the development of a robust antiviral adaptive Th-1 immune response. This response is mediated by IL-12 and IFNγ that decreases viral clearance; levels of both of these mediators were decreased in patient 1. Finally, we confirm previous in vitro findings that MERS-CoV can drive IL-17 production in humans. Host recognition of viral dsRNA determines outcome in the early stage of MERS-CoV infection. We highlight the critical role of IFNα in this initial stage to orchestrate a robust immune response and bring substantial arguments for the indication of early IFNα treatment during MERS-CoV infection. PMID:24551142

  3. HYBRIDIZATION OF DNA PROBES WITH WHOLE-COMMUNITY GENOMES FOR DETECTION OF GENES THAT ENCODE MICROBIAL RESPONSES TO POLLUTANTS: MER GENES AND HG2+ RESISTANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nucleic acids extracted from microbial biomass were hybridized with probes representing four mer operons, to detect genes encoding adaptation to Hg2+. An enrichment in sequences similar to the mer genes of transposon 501 occurred during adaptation in a freshwater community. In an...

  4. The Planning, Programming, Budgeting, and Evaluation System of the Board of Education for the Borough of York. Management of Educational Resources System (MERS). Progress Report Number One.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    York Borough Board of Education, Toronto (Ontario).

    Three aspects of the York Borough's school instructional programs are discussed: program structure, program costs, and program evaluation. Some basic philosophies of the Management of Educational Resources System (MERS) are set forth and the early history of the project is described showing how the boardwide MERS evolved from a pilot experiment…

  5. Up-Regulation of Soluble Axl and Mer Receptor Tyrosine Kinases Negatively Correlates with Gas6 in Established Multiple Sclerosis Lesions

    PubMed Central

    Weinger, Jason G.; Omari, Kakuri M.; Marsden, Kurt; Raine, Cedric S.; Shafit-Zagardo, Bridget

    2009-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis is a disease that is characterized by inflammation, demyelination, and axonal damage; it ultimately forms gliotic scars and lesions that severely compromise the function of the central nervous system. Evidence has shown previously that altered growth factor receptor signaling contributes to lesion formation, impedes recovery, and plays a role in disease progression. Growth arrest-specific protein 6 (Gas6), the ligand for the TAM receptor tyrosine kinase family, consisting of Tyro3, Axl, and Mer, is important for cell growth, survival, and clearance of debris. In this study, we show that levels of membrane-bound Mer (205 kd), soluble Mer (∼150 kd), and soluble Axl (80 kd) were all significantly elevated in homogenates from established multiple sclerosis lesions comprised of both chronic active and chronic silent lesions. Whereas in normal tissue Gas6 positively correlated with soluble Axl and Mer, there was a negative correlation between Gas6 and soluble Axl and Mer in established multiple sclerosis lesions. In addition, increased levels of soluble Axl and Mer were associated with increased levels of mature ADAM17, mature ADAM10, and Furin, proteins that are associated with Axl and Mer solubilization. Soluble Axl and Mer are both known to act as decoy receptors and block Gas6 binding to membrane-bound receptors. These data suggest that in multiple sclerosis lesions, dysregulation of protective Gas6 receptor signaling may prolong lesion activity. PMID:19541935

  6. Crystal Structures of the Organomercurial Lyase MerB in Its Free and Mercury-bound Forms: INSIGHTS INTO THE MECHANISM OF METHYLMERCURY DEGRADATION

    SciTech Connect

    Lafrance-Vanasse, Julien; Lefebvre, Maryse; Lello, Paola Di; Sygusch, Jurgen; Omichinski, James G. )

    2009-01-27

    Bacteria resistant to methylmercury utilize two enzymes (MerA and MerB) to degrade methylmercury to the less toxic elemental mercury. The crucial step is the cleavage of the carbon-mercury bond of methylmercury by the organomercurial lyase (MerB). In this study, we determined high resolution crystal structures of MerB in both the free (1.76-{angstrom} resolution) and mercury-bound (1.64-{angstrom} resolution) states. The crystal structure of free MerB is very similar to the NMR structure, but important differences are observed when comparing the two structures. In the crystal structure, an amino-terminal {alpha}-helix that is not present in the NMR structure makes contact with the core region adjacent to the catalytic site. This interaction between the amino-terminal helix and the core serves to bury the active site of MerB. The crystal structures also provide detailed insights into the mechanism of carbon-mercury bond cleavage by MerB. The structures demonstrate that two conserved cysteines (Cys-96 and Cys-159) play a role in substrate binding, carbon-mercury bond cleavage, and controlled product (ionic mercury) release. In addition, the structures establish that an aspartic acid (Asp-99) in the active site plays a crucial role in the proton transfer step required for the cleavage of the carbon-mercury bond. These findings are an important step in understanding the mechanism of carbon-mercury bond cleavage by MerB.

  7. MER Field Geologic Traverse in Gusev Crater, Mars: Initial Results From the Perspective of Spirit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crumpler, L.; Cabrol, N.; desMarais, D.; Farmer, J.; Golmbek, M.; Grant, J.; Greely, R.; Grotzinger, J.; Haskin, L.; Arvidson, R.

    2004-01-01

    This report casts the initial results of the traverse and science investigations by the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit at Gusev crater [1] in terms of data sets commonly used in field geologic investigations: Local mapping of geologic features, analyses of selected samples, and their location within the local map, and the regional context of the field traverse in terms of the larger geologic and physiographic region. These elements of the field method are represented in the MER characterization of the Gusev traverse by perspective-based geologic/morphologic maps, the placement of the results from Mossbauer, APXS, Microscopic Imager, Mini-TES and Pancam multispectral studies in context within this geologic/ morphologic map, and the placement of the overall traverse in the context of narrow-angle MOC (Mars Orbiter Camera) and descent images. A major campaign over a significance fraction of the mission will be the first robotic traverse of the ejecta from a Martian impact crater along an approximate radial from the crater center. The Mars Exploration Rovers have been conceptually described as 'robotic field geologists', that is, a suite of instruments with mobility that enables far-field traverses to multiple sites located within a regional map/image base at which in situ analyses may be done. Initial results from MER, where the field geologic method has been used throughout the initial course of the investigation, confirm that this field geologic model is applicable for remote planetary surface exploration. The field geologic method makes use of near-field geologic characteristics ('outcrops') to develop an understanding of the larger geologic context through continuous loop of rational steps focused on real-time hypothesis identification and testing. This poster equates 'outcrops' with the locations of in situ investigations and 'regional context' with the geology over distance of several kilometers. Using this fundamental field geologic method, we have

  8. Environmental Conditions Constrain the Distribution and Diversity of Archaeal merA in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, U.S.A.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wang, Y.; Boyd, E.; Crane, S.; Lu-Irving, P.; Krabbenhoft, D.; King, S.; Dighton, J.; Geesey, G.; Barkay, T.

    2011-01-01

    The distribution and phylogeny of extant protein-encoding genes recovered from geochemically diverse environments can provide insight into the physical and chemical parameters that led to the origin and which constrained the evolution of a functional process. Mercuric reductase (MerA) plays an integral role in mercury (Hg) biogeochemistry by catalyzing the transformation of Hg(II) to Hg(0). Putative merA sequences were amplified from DNA extracts of microbial communities associated with mats and sulfur precipitates from physicochemically diverse Hg-containing springs in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, using four PCR primer sets that were designed to capture the known diversity of merA. The recovery of novel and deeply rooted MerA lineages from these habitats supports previous evidence that indicates merA originated in a thermophilic environment. Generalized linear models indicate that the distribution of putative archaeal merA lineages was constrained by a combination of pH, dissolved organic carbon, dissolved total mercury and sulfide. The models failed to identify statistically well supported trends for the distribution of putative bacterial merA lineages as a function of these or other measured environmental variables, suggesting that these lineages were either influenced by environmental parameters not considered in the present study, or the bacterial primer sets were designed to target too broad of a class of genes which may have responded differently to environmental stimuli. The widespread occurrence of merA in the geothermal environments implies a prominent role for Hg detoxification in these environments. Moreover, the differences in the distribution of the merA genes amplified with the four merA primer sets suggests that the organisms putatively engaged in this activity have evolved to occupy different ecological niches within the geothermal gradient. ?? 2011 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  9. Biophysical characterization of the MerP-like amino-terminal extension of the mercuric reductase from Ralstonia metallidurans CH34.

    PubMed

    Rossy, Emmanuel; Champier, Ludovic; Bersch, Beate; Brutscher, Bernhard; Blackledge, Martin; Covès, Jacques

    2004-01-01

    The purified native mercuric reductase (MerA) from Ralstonia metallidurans CH34 contains an N-terminal sequence of 68 amino acids predicted to be homologous to MerP, the periplasmic mercury-binding protein. This MerP-like protein has now been expressed independently. The protein was named MerAa by homology with Ccc2a, the first soluble domain of the copper-transporting ATPase from yeast. Deltaa has been characterized using a set of biophysical techniques. The binding of mercury was followed using circular dichroism spectroscopy and electrospray mass spectrometry. The two cysteine residues contained in the consensus sequence GMTC XXC are involved in the binding of one mercury atom, with an apparent affinity comparable to that of MerP for the same metal. The metal-binding site is confirmed by NMR chemical shift changes observed between apo- and metal-bound MerAa in solution. NMR shift and NOE data also indicate that only minor structural changes occur upon metal binding. Further NMR investigation of the fold of MerAa using long-range methyl-methyl NOE and backbone residual dipolar coupling data confirm the expected close structural homology with MerP. (15)N relaxation data show that MerAa is a globally rigid molecule. An increased backbone mobility was observed for the loop region connecting the first beta-strand and the first alpha-helix and comprising the metal-binding domain. Although significantly reduced, this loop region keeps some conformational flexibility upon metal binding. Altogether, our data suggest a role of MerAa in mercury trafficking. PMID:14624351

  10. Results from Automated Cloud and Dust Devil Detection Onboard the MER

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chien, Steve; Castano, Rebecca; Bornstein, Benjamin; Fukunaga, Alex; Castano, Andres; Biesiadecki, Jeffrey; Greeley, Ron; Whelley, Patrick; Lemmon, Mark

    2008-01-01

    We describe a new capability to automatically detect dust devils and clouds in imagery onboard rovers, enabling downlink of just the images with the targets or only portions of the images containing the targets. Previously, the MER rovers conducted campaigns to image dust devils and clouds by commanding a set of images be collected at fixed times and downloading the entire image set. By increasing the efficiency of the campaigns, more campaigns can be executed. Software for these new capabilities was developed, tested, integrated, uploaded, and operationally checked out on both rovers as part of the R9.2 software upgrade. In April 2007 on Sol 1147 a dust devil was automatically detected onboard the Spirit rover for the first time. We discuss the operational usage of the capability and present initial dust devil results showing how this preliminary application has demonstrated the feasibility and potential benefits of the approach.

  11. THEMIS Observations, Discoveries and Predictions for the MER A Landing Site in Gusev Crater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rice, J. W.; Christensen, P. R.

    2003-12-01

    THEMIS has "followed the water" and discovered the youngest water flow into the MER A landing site in Gusev crater. This flow has a rumpled looking texture and is interpreted to be viscous material emanating from the mouth of Ma'adim Vallis. The flow can be traced for over 150 km across the floor of Gusev. This flow is emplaced on top of the smooth plains material and covers the whole western half of the landing ellipse. The flow does not show up in THEMIS IR indicating that it is mantled with at least a few cm of dust. This flow is either a debris flow (15-40% water volume content) or hyperconcentrated flow (40-80% water volume content) and not a lava flow based on its morphology, geologic setting, and lack of nearby volcanic sources. Debris flow deposits can be differentiated from hyperconcentrated flows on the basis of particle sorting, sedimentary structures, and inferred rheological properties. Access to this deposit will allow sampling of the most recent water related sediment in the basin. A very interesting relationship has been found to exist for many craters in the region of Gusev. These craters contain stacks of layered sedimentary deposits. It should be noted that these craters lack a large inflowing channel system. A similar layered morphology is seen on the floor of Gusev, especially the SE portion of the crater, where a 190 m thick deposit is being eroded. We propose that this material in Gusev is the remnant of a formerly more extensive regional unit related to the layered deposits seen in the many nearby craters. This observation suggests that the region was formerly buried by several hundred meters of material that is now being exhumed. This also implies that Ma'adim Vallis was a superposed channel that cut down from above and across Gusev. We also offer another scenario for Gusev in that it received periodic outwash deposits and may have contained shallow ephemeral playas with short lifetimes and not deep long lived lakes as suggested by some

  12. Mineralogy Considerations for 2003 MER Site Selection and the Importance for Astrobiology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bishop, J. L.

    2001-01-01

    Much of the discussion of site selection on Mars is based on interesting images of the surface combined with safety issues. I argue that the two rovers should be sent to mineralogically distinct regions. Compositional information is still poorly constrained on Mars; however, the instruments on the 2003 Mars Exploration Rovers (MERs) will provide a unique opportunity for detailed characterization including mineral identification. There is strong motivation for sending one rover to a "typical" region on Mars to be used as a ground truth for the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES), while the other rover should be sent to a site where water and chemical alteration are likely to have occurred. Determining the mineralogy of the Martian surface material provides information about the past and present environments on Mars which are an integral aspect of whether or not Mars was suitable for the origin of life. Understanding the mineralogy of terrestrial samples from potentially Mars-like environments is essential to this effort.

  13. Contributions from Particles in Europe (PiE) 2010, Villefranche-sur-Mer, France: an introduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikkelsen, Ole A.; Chami, Malik; Doxaran, David

    2012-04-01

    This special issue of Geo-Marine Letters presents selected contributions from the international conference Particles in Europe (PiE) 2010 organized by Sequoia Scientific, Inc., and the Laboratoire d'Océanographie de Villefranche (LOV) on 15-17 November 2010 in Villefranche-sur-Mer, France, and guest-edited by Ole Mikkelsen, Malik Chami and David Doxaran. PiE was initiated in 2008, in order to promote and further our understanding of the importance of suspended particulate matter (SPM) for a very wide range of processes in the aquatic environment—from optics and acoustics, over sediment transport, to the global carbon balance. The papers in this special issue are in particular concerned with the interaction between SPM and water optical properties, as well as how to use optical proxy measurements to understand SPM processes. The next PiE conference is scheduled for 17-19 October 2012 in Barcelona, Spain.

  14. 21 CFR 177.1050 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 3 2010-04-01 2009-04-01 true Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer. 177.1050 Section 177.1050 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (CONTINUED) INDIRECT FOOD ADDITIVES: POLYMERS Substances for Use as...

  15. 21 CFR 177.1050 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 3 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer. 177.1050 Section 177.1050 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (CONTINUED) INDIRECT FOOD ADDITIVES: POLYMERS Substances for Use as...

  16. 21 CFR 177.1050 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 3 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer. 177.1050 Section 177.1050 Food and Drugs FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (CONTINUED) FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (CONTINUED) INDIRECT FOOD ADDITIVES: POLYMERS Substances for Use as...

  17. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes transient lower respiratory tract infection in rhesus macaques

    PubMed Central

    de Wit, Emmie; Rasmussen, Angela L.; Falzarano, Darryl; Bushmaker, Trenton; Brining, Douglas L.; Fischer, Elizabeth R.; Martellaro, Cynthia; Okumura, Atsushi; Chang, Jean; Scott, Dana; Benecke, Arndt G.; Katze, Michael G.; Feldmann, Heinz; Munster, Vincent J.

    2013-01-01

    In 2012, a novel betacoronavirus, designated Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus or MERS-CoV and associated with severe respiratory disease in humans, emerged in the Arabian Peninsula. To date, 108 human cases have been reported, including cases of human-to-human transmission. The availability of an animal disease model is essential for understanding pathogenesis and developing effective countermeasures. Upon a combination of intratracheal, ocular, oral, and intranasal inoculation with 7 × 106 50% tissue culture infectious dose of the MERS-CoV isolate HCoV-EMC/2012, rhesus macaques developed a transient lower respiratory tract infection. Clinical signs, virus shedding, virus replication in respiratory tissues, gene expression, and cytokine and chemokine profiles peaked early in infection and decreased over time. MERS-CoV caused a multifocal, mild to marked interstitial pneumonia, with virus replication occurring mainly in alveolar pneumocytes. This tropism of MERS-CoV for the lower respiratory tract may explain the severity of the disease observed in humans and the, up to now, limited human-to-human transmission. PMID:24062443

  18. Comparative and kinetic analysis of viral shedding and immunological responses in MERS patients representing a broad spectrum of disease severity

    PubMed Central

    Min, Chan-Ki; Cheon, Shinhye; Ha, Na-Young; Sohn, Kyung Mok; Kim, Yuri; Aigerim, Abdimadiyeva; Shin, Hyun Mu; Choi, Ji-Yeob; Inn, Kyung-Soo; Kim, Jin-Hwan; Moon, Jae Young; Choi, Myung-Sik; Cho, Nam-Hyuk; Kim, Yeon-Sook

    2016-01-01

    Despite the ongoing spread of MERS, there is limited knowledge of the factors affecting its severity and outcomes. We analyzed clinical data and specimens from fourteen MERS patients treated in a hospital who collectively represent a wide spectrum of disease severity, ranging from mild febrile illness to fatal pneumonia, and classified the patients into four groups based on severity and mortality. Comparative and kinetic analyses revealed that high viral loads, weak antibody responses, and lymphopenia accompanying thrombocytopenia were associated with disease mortality, whereas persistent and gradual increases in lymphocyte responses might be required for effective immunity against MERS-CoV infection. Leukocytosis, primarily due to increased neutrophils and monocytes, was generally observed in more severe and fatal cases. The blood levels of cytokines such as IL-10, IL-15, TGF-β, and EGF were either positively or negatively correlated with disease mortality. Robust induction of various chemokines with differential kinetics was more prominent in patients that recovered from pneumonia than in patients with mild febrile illness or deceased patients. The correlation of the virological and immunological responses with disease severity and mortality, as well as their responses to current antiviral therapy, may have prognostic significance during the early phase of MERS. PMID:27146253

  19. Comparative and kinetic analysis of viral shedding and immunological responses in MERS patients representing a broad spectrum of disease severity.

    PubMed

    Min, Chan-Ki; Cheon, Shinhye; Ha, Na-Young; Sohn, Kyung Mok; Kim, Yuri; Aigerim, Abdimadiyeva; Shin, Hyun Mu; Choi, Ji-Yeob; Inn, Kyung-Soo; Kim, Jin-Hwan; Moon, Jae Young; Choi, Myung-Sik; Cho, Nam-Hyuk; Kim, Yeon-Sook

    2016-01-01

    Despite the ongoing spread of MERS, there is limited knowledge of the factors affecting its severity and outcomes. We analyzed clinical data and specimens from fourteen MERS patients treated in a hospital who collectively represent a wide spectrum of disease severity, ranging from mild febrile illness to fatal pneumonia, and classified the patients into four groups based on severity and mortality. Comparative and kinetic analyses revealed that high viral loads, weak antibody responses, and lymphopenia accompanying thrombocytopenia were associated with disease mortality, whereas persistent and gradual increases in lymphocyte responses might be required for effective immunity against MERS-CoV infection. Leukocytosis, primarily due to increased neutrophils and monocytes, was generally observed in more severe and fatal cases. The blood levels of cytokines such as IL-10, IL-15, TGF-β, and EGF were either positively or negatively correlated with disease mortality. Robust induction of various chemokines with differential kinetics was more prominent in patients that recovered from pneumonia than in patients with mild febrile illness or deceased patients. The correlation of the virological and immunological responses with disease severity and mortality, as well as their responses to current antiviral therapy, may have prognostic significance during the early phase of MERS. PMID:27146253

  20. One-step, regioselective synthesis of up to 50-mers of RNA oligomers by montmorillonite catalysis.

    PubMed

    Huang, Wenhua; Ferris, James P

    2006-07-12

    5'-Nucleotides of A and U with the phosphate activated with 1-methyladenine generate RNA oligomers containing 40-50 monomers in 1 day in reactions catalyzed by montmorillonite. The corresponding monomers of C give oligomers that are 20-25-mers in length after a 9-day reaction. It was not possible to determine the chain lengths of the oligomers of G since they did not give well-defined bands on gel electrophoresis. Co-oligomers of A and U as well as A, U, G, and C were also prepared. The oligo(A)s formed were separated by gel electrophoresis, and the bands of the 7-39-mers were isolated, the 3',5'-phosphodiester bonds were cleaved by RNase T(2), and the terminal phosphate groups were cleaved with alkaline phosphatase. HPLC analysis revealed that the proportions of A(5)'pp(5)'A, A, A(2)'pA, and A(2)'pA(2)'pA formed were almost the same for the long and shorter oligomers. A similar structure analysis performed on the oligo(U)s established that the proportions of U(5)'pp(5)'U, U, U(2)'pU, U(2)'pU(2)'pU, U(2)'pU(2)'pU(2)'pU, and U(2)'pU(2)'pU(2)'pU(2)'pU did not vary with chain length. The structural analysis of the oligomers of A revealed that 74% of the phosphodiester bonds were 3',5'-linked a value slightly greater than 67% observed when imidazole was the activating group. 61% of the bonds in the U oligomers were 3',5'-linked, which is almost 3 times greater than the 20% measured when imidazole was the activating group. The potential significance of these data to the origin and early evolution of life is discussed. PMID:16819887

  1. Conceptual Design and Architecture of Mars Exploration Rover (MER) for Seismic Experiments Over Martian Surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garg, Akshay; Singh, Amit

    2012-07-01

    Keywords: MER, Mars, Rover, Seismometer Mars has been a subject of human interest for exploration missions for quite some time now. Both rover as well as orbiter missions have been employed to suit mission objectives. Rovers have been preferentially deployed for close range reconnaissance and detailed experimentation with highest accuracy. However, it is essential to strike a balance between the chosen science objectives and the rover operations as a whole. The objective of this proposed mechanism is to design a vehicle (MER) to carry out seismic studies over Martian surface. The conceptual design consists of three units i.e. Mother Rover as a Surrogate (Carrier) and Baby Rovers (two) as seeders for several MEMS-based accelerometer / seismometer units (Nodes). Mother Rover can carry these Baby Rovers, having individual power supply with solar cells and with individual data transmission capabilities, to suitable sites such as Chasma associated with Valles Marineris, Craters or Sand Dunes. Mother rover deploys these rovers in two opposite direction and these rovers follow a triangulation pattern to study shock waves generated through firing tungsten carbide shells into the ground. Till the time of active experiments Mother Rover would act as a guiding unit to control spatial spread of detection instruments. After active shock experimentation, the babies can still act as passive seismometer units to study and record passive shocks from thermal quakes, impact cratering & landslides. Further other experiments / payloads (XPS / GAP / APXS) can also be carried by Mother Rover. Secondary power system consisting of batteries can also be utilized for carrying out further experiments over shallow valley surfaces. The whole arrangement is conceptually expected to increase the accuracy of measurements (through concurrent readings) and prolong life cycle of overall experimentation. The proposed rover can be customised according to the associated scientific objectives and further

  2. The Miniaturized Moessbauer Spectrometers MIMOS II on MER: Four Years of Operation - A Summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleischer, I.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Morris, R. V.; Rodionov, D.; Blumers, M.; Bernhardt, B.; Schroeder, C.; Ming, D. W.; Yen, A. S.; Cohen, B. A.; McCoy, T. J.; Mittlefehldt, D. W.; Schmidt, M. E.; Girones Lopez, J.; Studlek, G.; Brueckner, J.; Gellert, R.; d'Uston, C.

    2008-01-01

    The two Miniaturized Moessbauer Spectrometers (MIMOS II) on board the two Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity have now been collecting important scientific data for more than four years. The spectrometers provide information about Fe-bearing mineral phases and determine Fe oxidation states. The total amount of targets analized exceeds 600, the total integration time exceeds 260 days for both rovers. Since landing, more than five half-lives of the Co-57 MB sources have past (intensity at the time of landing approx. 150 mCi). Current integration times are about 50 hours in order to achieve reasonable statistics as opposed to 8 hours at the beginning of the mission. In total, 13 different mineral phases were detected: Olivine, pyroxene, hematite, magnetite and nanophase ferric oxide were detected at both landing sites. At Gusev, ilmenite, goethite, a ferric sulfate phase and a yet unassigned phase (in the rock Fuzzy Smith) were detected. At Meridiani, jarosite, metallic iron in meteoritic samples (kamacite), troilite, and an unassigned ferric phase were detected. Jarosite and goethite are of special interest, as these minerals are indicators for water activity. In this abstract, an overview of Moessbauer results will be given, with a focus on data obtained since the last martian winter. The MER mission has proven that Moessbauer spectroscopy is a valuable tool for the in situ exploration of extraterrestrial bodies and for the study of Febearing samples. The experience gained through the MER mission makes MIMOS II a obvious choice for future missions to Mars and other targets. Currently, MIMOS II is on the scientific payload of two approved future missions: Phobos Grunt (Russian Space Agency; 2009) and ExoMars (European Space Agency; 2013).

  3. Protection of rat liver against hepatic ischemia-reperfusion injury by a novel selenocysteine-containing 7-mer peptide.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Qianqian; Pan, Yu; Cheng, Yupeng; Li, Huiling; Li, Hui

    2016-09-01

    Hepatic ischemia-reperfusion (I-R) injury causes acute organ damage or dysfunction, and remains a problem for liver transplantation. In the I-R phase, the generation of reactive oxygen species aggravates the injury. In the current study, a novel selenocysteine-containing 7‑mer peptide (H-Arg-Sec-Gly-Arg-Asn-Ala-Gln-OH) was constructed to imitate the active site of an antioxidant enzyme, glutathione peroxidase (GPX). The 7‑mer peptide which has a lower molecular weight, and improved water‑solubility, higher stability and improved cell membrane permeability compared with other GPX mimics. Its GPX activity reached 13 U/µmol, which was 13 times that of ebselen (a representative GPX mimic). The effect of this GPX mimic on I‑R injury of the liver was assessed in rats. The 7‑mer peptide significantly inhibited the increase in serum hepatic amino‑transferases, tissue malondialdehyde, nitric oxide contents, myeloperoxidase activity and decrease of GPX activity compared with I‑R tissue. Following treatment with the 7‑mer peptide, the expression of B‑cell CLL/lymphoma‑2 (Bcl‑2) was significantly upregulated at the mRNA and protein level compared with the I‑R group, as determined by reverse transcription‑polymerase chain reaction and immunohistochemistry, respectively. By contrast, Bcl‑2 associated X protein (Bax) was downregulated by the 7‑mer peptide compared the I‑R group. Histological and ultrastructural changes of the rat liver tissue were also compared among the experimental groups. The results of the current study suggest that the 7‑mer peptide protected the liver against hepatic I‑R injury via suppression of oxygen‑derived free radicals and regulation of Bcl‑2 and Bax expression, which are involved in the apoptosis of liver cells. The findings of the present study will further the investigation of the 7-mer peptide as an effective therapeutic agent in hepatic I-R injury. PMID:27431272

  4. PEDF and 34-mer inhibit angiogenesis in the heart by inducing tip cells apoptosis via up-regulating PPAR-γ to increase surface FasL.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hao; Wei, Tengteng; Jiang, Xia; Li, Zhimin; Cui, Huazhu; Pan, Jiajun; Zhuang, Wei; Sun, Teng; Liu, Zhiwei; Zhang, Zhongming; Dong, Hongyan

    2016-01-01

    Pigment epithelial-derived factor (PEDF) is a potent anti-angiogenic factor whose effects are partially mediated through the induction of endothelial cell apoptosis. However, the underlying mechanism for PEDF and the functional PEDF peptides 34-mer and 44-mer to inhibit angiogenesis in the heart has not been fully established. In the present study, by constructing adult Sprague-Dawley rat models of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and in vitro myocardial angiogenesis, we showed that PEDF and 34-mer markedly inhibits angiogenesis by selectively inducing tip cells apoptosis rather than quiescent cells. Peptide 44-mer on the other hand exhibits no such effects. Next, we identified Fas death pathway as essential downstream regulators of PEDF and 34-mer activities in inhibiting angiogenesis. By using peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPAR-γ) siRNA and PPAR-γ inhibitor, GW9662, we found the effects of PEDF and 34-mer were extensively blocked. These data suggest that PEDF and 34-mer inhibit angiogenesis via inducing tip cells apoptosis at least by means of up-regulating PPAR-γ to increase surface FasL in the ischemic heart, which might be a novel mechanism to understanding cardiac angiogenesis after AMI. PMID:26519036

  5. The Synechocystis PCC6803 MerA-Like Enzyme Operates in the Reduction of Both Mercury and Uranium under the Control of the Glutaredoxin 1 Enzyme

    PubMed Central

    Marteyn, Benoit; Sakr, Samer; Farci, Sandrine; Bedhomme, Mariette; Chardonnet, Solenne; Decottignies, Paulette; Lemaire, Stéphane D.; Cassier-Chauvat, Corinne

    2013-01-01

    In a continuing effort to analyze the selectivity/redundancy of the three glutaredoxin (Grx) enzymes of the model cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC6803, we have characterized an enzyme system that plays a crucial role in protection against two toxic metal pollutants, mercury and uranium. The present data show that Grx1 (Slr1562 in CyanoBase) selectively interacts with the presumptive mercuric reductase protein (Slr1849). This MerA enzyme plays a crucial role in cell defense against both mercuric and uranyl ions, in catalyzing their NADPH-driven reduction. Like MerA, Grx1 operates in cell protection against both mercury and uranium. The Grx1-MerA interaction requires cysteine 86 (C86) of Grx1 and C78 of MerA, which is critical for its reductase activity. MerA can be inhibited by glutathionylation and subsequently reactivated by Grx1, likely through deglutathionylation. The two Grx1 residues C31, which belongs to the redox active site (CX2C), and C86, which operates in MerA interactions, are both required for reactivation of MerA. These novel findings emphasize the role of glutaredoxins in tolerance to metal stress as well as the evolutionary conservation of the glutathionylation process, so far described mostly for eukaryotes. PMID:23852862

  6. In-vitro renal epithelial cell infection reveals a viral kidney tropism as a potential mechanism for acute renal failure during Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) Coronavirus infection

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes symptoms similar to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV), yet involving an additional component of acute renal failure (ARF) according to several published case reports. Impairment of the kidney is not typically seen in Coronavirus infections. The role of kidney infection in MERS is not understood. Findings A systematic review of communicated and peer-reviewed case reports revealed differences in descriptions of kidney involvement in MERS versus SARS patients. In particular, ARF in MERS patients occurred considerably earlier after a median time to onset of 11 days (SD ±2,0 days) as opposed to 20 days for SARS, according to the literature. In-situ histological staining of the respective cellular receptors for MERS- and SARS-Coronavirus showed highly similar staining patterns with a focus of a receptor-specific signal in kidney epithelial cells. Comparative infection experiments with SARS- and MERS-CoV in primary human kidney cells versus primary human bronchial epithelial cells showed cytopathogenic infection only in kidney cells, and only if infected with MERS-CoV. Kidney epithelial cells produced almost 1000-fold more infectious MERS-CoV progeny than bronchial epithelial cells, while only a small difference was seen between cell types when infected with SARS-CoV. Conclusion Epidemiological studies should analyze kidney impairment and its characteristics in MERS-CoV. Virus replication in the kidney with potential shedding in urine might constitute a way of transmission, and could explain untraceable transmission chains leading to new cases. Individual patients might benefit from early induction of renoprotective treatment. PMID:24364985

  7. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) RNA and neutralising antibodies in milk collected according to local customs from dromedary camels, Qatar, April 2014.

    PubMed

    Reusken, C B; Farag, E A; Jonges, M; Godeke, G J; El-Sayed, A M; Pas, S D; Raj, V S; Mohran, K A; Moussa, H A; Ghobashy, H; Alhajri, F; Ibrahim, A K; Bosch, B J; Pasha, S K; Al-Romaihi, H E; Al-Thani, M; Al-Marri, S A; AlHajri, M M; Haagmans, B L; Koopmans, M P

    2014-01-01

    Antibodies to Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) were detected in serum and milk collected according to local customs from 33 camels in Qatar, April 2014. At one location, evidence for active virus shedding in nasal secretions and/or faeces was observed for 7/12 camels; viral RNA was detected in milk of five of these seven camels. The presence of MERS-CoV RNA in milk of camels actively shedding the virus warrants measures to prevent putative food-borne transmission of MERS-CoV. PMID:24957745

  8. Dust Accumulation and Solar Panel Array Performance on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Turgay, Eren H.

    2004-01-01

    One of the most fundamental design considerations for any space vehicle is its power supply system. Many options exist, including batteries, fuel cells, nuclear reactors, radioisotopic thermal generators (RTGs), and solar panel arrays. Solar arrays have many advantages over other types of power generation. They are lightweight and relatively inexpensive, allowing more mass and funding to be allocated for other important devices, such as scientific instruments. For Mars applications, solar power is an excellent option, especially for long missions. One might think that dust storms would be a problem; however, while dust blocks some solar energy, it also scatters it, making it diffuse rather than beamed. Solar cells are still able to capture this diffuse energy and convert it into substantial electrical power. For these reasons, solar power was chosen to be used on the 1997 Mars Pathfinder mission. The success of this mission set a precedent, as NASA engineers have selected solar power as the energy system of choice for all future Mars missions, including the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Project. Solar sells have their drawbacks, however. They are difficult to manufacture and are relatively fragile. In addition, solar cells are highly sensitive to different parts of the solar spectrum, and finding the correct balance is crucial to the success of space missions. Another drawback is that the power generated is not a constant with respect to time, but rather changes with the relative angle to the sun. On Mars, dust accumulation also becomes a factor. Over time, dust settles out of the atmosphere and onto solar panels. This dust blocks and shifts the frequency of the incoming light, degrading solar cell performance. My goal is to analyze solar panel telemetry data from the two MERs (Spirit and Opportunity) in an effort to accurately model the effect of dust accumulation on solar panels. This is no easy process due to the large number of factors involved. Changing solar

  9. Evaporative evolution of Martian brines based on halogens in nakhlites and MER samples

    SciTech Connect

    Rao, M.N.; Sutton, S.R.; McKay, D.S.

    2005-02-04

    Comparison of Cl and Br from Nakhla viens to MER samples suggests two kinds of brine solutions existed on Mars, one early and one late in the evaporation sequence. These solutions precipitated the secondary salts at the Meridiani and Gusev sites. We have recently reported the Cl and Br abundances determined by APS X-ray Microprobe and EMPA analyses of secondary aqueous minerals in Nakhla veins and discussed the significance of Cl-Br correlations with respect to the evolution of brine solutions on Mars. In that study, we suggested that the low Br concentration ({approx}10 ppm) in Lafayette Iddingsite is indicative of early stage of evaporation during progressive evolution of Martian brine solutions, which is, in turn, consistent with the petrographic evidence of early deposition of salt sequence of carbonate-sulfate- and no halite in Lafayette. We showed that the high Br concentrations of {approx}240 ppm in secondary salts in Nakhla veins similarly indicate late stages of evaporation in evolving Martian brine solutions which is again consistent with petrographic evidence of late stage deposition of salt sequence i.e. carbonate-sulfate-halite in Nakhla. When sea water evaporates under equilibrium conditions, the most insoluble carbonates (siderite and calcite) deposit first, followed by sulfates (gypsum and anhydrite) and finally the water-soluble halides are precipitated when the water content is sufficiently low. In the present study, we make a detailed comparison of Cl/Br ratios in secondary minerals in nakhlites with those in MER soils and rocks at Gusev and Meridiani and show that the compositions of solutions that inundated Lafayette iddingsite (early stage) and Nakhla veins (late stage) include the range of solution-compositions that gave rise to a variety of secondary salts at Gusev and Meridiani sites. Further, the results obtained here suggest that two kinds of brine solutions (one, late and the other, early or intermediate stage) seem to have inundated

  10. Expression and single-step purification of mercury transporter (merT) from Cupriavidus metallidurans in E. coli.

    PubMed

    Senthil, K; Gautam, P

    2010-11-01

    The mercury transporter, merT, from Cupriavidus metallidurans was cloned into pRSET-C and expressed in various E. coli hosts. Expression of merT gene failed in common expression hosts like E. coli BL21(DE3), E. coli BL21(DE3)pLysS and E. coli GJ1158 due to expression induced toxicity. The protein was successfully expressed in E. coli C43(DE3) as inclusion bodies. The inclusion bodies were solubilized with Triton X-100 detergent. The detergent solubilized protein with N-terminal His-tag was purified in a single-step by immobilized metal affinity chromatography with a yield of 8 mg l(-1). PMID:20574829

  11. Extraintestinal manifestations of celiac disease: 33-mer gliadin binding to glutamate receptor GRINA as a new explanation.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Quintanilla, Albert; Miranzo-Navarro, Domingo

    2016-05-01

    We propose a biochemical mechanism for celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity that may rationalize many of the extradigestive disorders not explained by the current immunogenetic model. Our hypothesis is based on the homology between the 33-mer gliadin peptide and a component of the NMDA glutamate receptor ion channel - the human GRINA protein - using BLASTP software. Based on this homology the 33-mer may act as a natural antagonist interfering with the normal interactions of GRINA and its partners. The theory is supported by numerous independent data from the literature, and provides a mechanistic link with otherwise unrelated disorders, such as cleft lip and palate, thyroid dysfunction, restless legs syndrome, depression, ataxia, hearing loss, fibromyalgia, dermatitis herpetiformis, schizophrenia, toxoplasmosis, anemia, osteopenia, Fabry disease, Barret's adenocarcinoma, neuroblastoma, urinary incontinence, recurrent miscarriage, cardiac anomalies, reduced risk of breast cancer, stiff person syndrome, etc. The hypothesis also anticipates better animal models, and has the potential to open new avenues of research. PMID:26990286

  12. Identification, synthesis and evaluation of SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV 3C-like protease inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Vathan; Tan, Kian-Pin; Wang, Ying-Ming; Lin, Sheng-Wei; Liang, Po-Huang

    2016-07-01

    Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) led to a life-threatening form of atypical pneumonia in late 2002. Following that, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) has recently emerged, killing about 36% of patients infected globally, mainly in Saudi Arabia and South Korea. Based on a scaffold we reported for inhibiting neuraminidase (NA), we synthesized the analogues and identified compounds with low micromolar inhibitory activity against 3CL(pro) of SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV. Docking studies show that a carboxylate present at either R(1) or R(4) destabilizes the oxyanion hole in the 3CL(pro). Interestingly, 3f, 3g and 3m could inhibit both NA and 3CL(pro) and serve as a starting point to develop broad-spectrum antiviral agents. PMID:27240464

  13. Inoculation of Goats, Sheep, and Horses with MERS-CoV Does Not Result in Productive Viral Shedding

    PubMed Central

    Adney, Danielle R.; Brown, Vienna R.; Porter, Stephanie M.; Bielefeldt-Ohmann, Helle; Hartwig, Airn E.; Bowen, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first recognized in 2012 and can cause severe disease in infected humans. Dromedary camels are the reservoir for the virus, although, other than nasal discharge, these animals do not display any overt clinical disease. Data from in vitro experiments suggest that other livestock such as sheep, goats, and horses might also contribute to viral transmission, although field data has not identified any seropositive animals. In order to understand if these animals could be infected, we challenged young goats and horses and adult sheep with MERS-CoV by intranasal inoculation. Minimal or no virus shedding was detected in all of the animals. During the four weeks following inoculation, neutralizing antibodies were detected in the young goats, but not in sheep or horses. PMID:27548203

  14. Inoculation of Goats, Sheep, and Horses with MERS-CoV Does Not Result in Productive Viral Shedding.

    PubMed

    Adney, Danielle R; Brown, Vienna R; Porter, Stephanie M; Bielefeldt-Ohmann, Helle; Hartwig, Airn E; Bowen, Richard A

    2016-01-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first recognized in 2012 and can cause severe disease in infected humans. Dromedary camels are the reservoir for the virus, although, other than nasal discharge, these animals do not display any overt clinical disease. Data from in vitro experiments suggest that other livestock such as sheep, goats, and horses might also contribute to viral transmission, although field data has not identified any seropositive animals. In order to understand if these animals could be infected, we challenged young goats and horses and adult sheep with MERS-CoV by intranasal inoculation. Minimal or no virus shedding was detected in all of the animals. During the four weeks following inoculation, neutralizing antibodies were detected in the young goats, but not in sheep or horses. PMID:27548203

  15. Structural and Biochemical Characterization of a Copper-Binding Mutant of the Organomercurial Lyase MerB: Insight into the Key Role of the Active Site Aspartic Acid in Hg-Carbon Bond Cleavage and Metal Binding Specificity.

    PubMed

    Wahba, Haytham M; Lecoq, Lauriane; Stevenson, Michael; Mansour, Ahmed; Cappadocia, Laurent; Lafrance-Vanasse, Julien; Wilkinson, Kevin J; Sygusch, Jurgen; Wilcox, Dean E; Omichinski, James G

    2016-02-23

    In bacterial resistance to mercury, the organomercurial lyase (MerB) plays a key role in the detoxification pathway through its ability to cleave Hg-carbon bonds. Two cysteines (C96 and C159; Escherichia coli MerB numbering) and an aspartic acid (D99) have been identified as the key catalytic residues, and these three residues are conserved in all but four known MerB variants, where the aspartic acid is replaced with a serine. To understand the role of the active site serine, we characterized the structure and metal binding properties of an E. coli MerB mutant with a serine substituted for D99 (MerB D99S) as well as one of the native MerB variants containing a serine residue in the active site (Bacillus megaterium MerB2). Surprisingly, the MerB D99S protein copurified with a bound metal that was determined to be Cu(II) from UV-vis absorption, inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, nuclear magnetic resonance, and electron paramagnetic resonance studies. X-ray structural studies revealed that the Cu(II) is bound to the active site cysteine residues of MerB D99S, but that it is displaced following the addition of either an organomercurial substrate or an ionic mercury product. In contrast, the B. megaterium MerB2 protein does not copurify with copper, but the structure of the B. megaterium MerB2-Hg complex is highly similar to the structure of the MerB D99S-Hg complexes. These results demonstrate that the active site aspartic acid is crucial for both the enzymatic activity and metal binding specificity of MerB proteins and suggest a possible functional relationship between MerB and its only known structural homologue, the copper-binding protein NosL. PMID:26820485

  16. A FASTQ compressor based on integer-mapped k-mer indexing for biologist.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yeting; Patel, Khyati; Endrawis, Tony; Bowers, Autumn; Sun, Yazhou

    2016-03-15

    Next generation sequencing (NGS) technologies have gained considerable popularity among biologists. For example, RNA-seq, which provides both genomic and functional information, has been widely used by recent functional and evolutionary studies, especially in non-model organisms. However, storing and transmitting these large data sets (primarily in FASTQ format) have become genuine challenges, especially for biologists with little informatics experience. Data compression is thus a necessity. KIC, a FASTQ compressor based on a new integer-mapped k-mer indexing method, was developed (available at http://www.ysunlab.org/kic.jsp). It offers high compression ratio on sequence data, outstanding user-friendliness with graphic user interfaces, and proven reliability. Evaluated on multiple large RNA-seq data sets from both human and plants, it was found that the compression ratio of KIC had exceeded all major generic compressors, and was comparable to those of the latest dedicated compressors. KIC enables researchers with minimal informatics training to take advantage of the latest sequence compression technologies, easily manage large FASTQ data sets, and reduce storage and transmission cost. PMID:26743127

  17. Leveraging Cloud Computing to Improve Storage Durability, Availability, and Cost for MER Maestro

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chang, George W.; Powell, Mark W.; Callas, John L.; Torres, Recaredo J.; Shams, Khawaja S.

    2012-01-01

    The Maestro for MER (Mars Exploration Rover) software is the premiere operation and activity planning software for the Mars rovers, and it is required to deliver all of the processed image products to scientists on demand. These data span multiple storage arrays sized at 2 TB, and a backup scheme ensures data is not lost. In a catastrophe, these data would currently recover at 20 GB/hour, taking several days for a restoration. A seamless solution provides access to highly durable, highly available, scalable, and cost-effective storage capabilities. This approach also employs a novel technique that enables storage of the majority of data on the cloud and some data locally. This feature is used to store the most recent data locally in order to guarantee utmost reliability in case of an outage or disconnect from the Internet. This also obviates any changes to the software that generates the most recent data set as it still has the same interface to the file system as it did before updates

  18. Duplex stabilities of phosphorothioate, methylphosphonate, and RNA analogs of two DNA 14-mers.

    PubMed Central

    Kibler-Herzog, L; Zon, G; Uznanski, B; Whittier, G; Wilson, W D

    1991-01-01

    The duplex stabilities of various phosphorothioate, methylphosphonate, RNA and 2'-OCH3 RNA analogs of two self-complementary DNA 14-mers are compared. Phosphorothioate and/or methylphosphonate analogs of the two sequences d(TAATTAATTAATTA) [D1] and d(TAGCTAATTAGCTA) [D2] differ in the number, position, or chirality (at the 5' terminal linkage) of the modified phosphates. Phosphorothioate derivatives of D1 are found to be less destabilized when the linkage modified is between adenines rather than between thymines. Surprisingly, no base sequence effect on duplex stabilization is observed for any methylphosphonate derivatives of D1 or D2. Highly modified phosphorothioates or methylphosphonates are less stable than their partially modified counterparts which are less stable than the unmodified parent compounds. The 'normal' (2'-OH) RNA analog of duplex D1 is slightly destabilized, whereas the 2'-OCH3 RNA derivative is significantly stabilized relative to the unmodified DNA. For the D1 sequence, at approximately physiological salt concentration, the order of duplex stability is 2'-OCH3 RNA greater than unmodified DNA greater than 'normal' RNA greater than methylphosphonate DNA greater than phosphorothioate DNA. D2 and the various D2 methylphosphonate analogs investigated all formed hairpin conformations at low salt concentrations. PMID:1711677

  19. Alignment independent 3D-QSAR, quantum calculations and molecular docking of Mer specific tyrosine kinase inhibitors as anticancer drugs

    PubMed Central

    Shiri, Fereshteh; Pirhadi, Somayeh; Ghasemi, Jahan B.

    2015-01-01

    Mer receptor tyrosine kinase is a promising novel cancer therapeutic target in many human cancers, because abnormal activation of Mer has been implicated in survival signaling and chemoresistance. 3D-QSAR analyses based on alignment independent descriptors were performed on a series of 81 Mer specific tyrosine kinase inhibitors. The fractional factorial design (FFD) and the enhanced replacement method (ERM) were applied and tested as variable selection algorithms for the selection of optimal subsets of molecular descriptors from a much greater pool of such regression variables. The data set was split into 65 molecules as the training set and 16 compounds as the test set. All descriptors were generated by using the GRid INdependent descriptors (GRIND) approach. After variable selection, GRIND were correlated with activity values (pIC50) by PLS regression. Of the two applied variable selection methods, ERM had a noticeable improvement on the statistical parameters of PLS model, and yielded a q2 value of 0.77, an rpred2 of 0.94, and a low RMSEP value of 0.25. The GRIND information contents influencing the affinity on Mer specific tyrosine kinase were also confirmed by docking studies. In a quantum calculation study, the energy difference between HOMO and LUMO (gap) implied the high interaction of the most active molecule in the active site of the protein. In addition, the molecular electrostatic potential energy at DFT level confirmed results obtained from the molecular docking. The identified key features obtained from the molecular modeling, enabled us to design novel kinase inhibitors. PMID:27013913

  20. Possible Evidence for Iron Sulfates, Iron Sulfides, and Elemental Sulfur at Gusev Crater, Mars, from Mer, Crism, and Analog Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, R. V.; Ming, D. W.; Yen, A.; Arvidson, R. E.; Gruener, J.; Humm, D.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Murchie, S.; Schroeder, C.; Seelos, F., IV; Squyres, S.; Wiseman, S.; Wolff, M.

    2007-01-01

    The Mossbauer (MB) spectrometers on the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) Spirit (Gusev crater) and Opportunity (Meridiani Planum) have detected 14 Fe-bearing phases, and mineralogical assignments have been made for all except 3. Identified Fe2+-bearing phases are olivine, pyroxene, ilmenite, and troilite. Magnetite and chromite are present as mixed Fe(2+) and Fe(3+) phases. Identified Fe(3+) phase are jarosite, hematite, goethite, and nanophase ferric oxide (npOx). Fe(sup 0) (iron metal) is present as kamacite. Nanophase ferric oxide (npOx) is a generic name for octahedrally coordinated Fe(3+) alteration products that cannot be otherwise mineralogically assigned on the basis of MER data. On the Earth, npOx would include ferrihydrite, iddingsite, schwertmannite, akaganeite, and superparamagnetic hematite and goethite. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter CRISM instrument, a visible, near-IR hyperspectral imager (approximately 0.35 to 4 micron) enables mineralogical examination of Mars with a tool that is sensitive to H2O and to M-OH (M = Al, Si, Fe, Mg, etc.) at spatial resolution of about 20 m/pixel. We examined a CRISM image of the MER region of Gusev crater (Columbia Hills and plains to the west), looking for spectral evidence of the aqueous process apparent from the MER analyses. We also searched for spectral constraints for the mineralogical composition of our unidentified Fe-bearing phases and the forms of npOx present on Mars. We also consider evidence from analogue samples that the precursor for the goethite detected by MB in Clovis Class rocks is an iron sulfide. We suggest that there is some indirect evidence that elemental sulfur might be present to different extents in Clovis Class rocks, the Fe3Sulfate-rich soils, and perhaps even typical (Laguna Class) surface soils.

  1. Beta-arrestin-2 negatively modulates inflammation response in mouse chondrocytes induced by 4-mer hyaluronan oligosaccharide.

    PubMed

    Campo, Giuseppe M; Avenoso, Angela; D'Ascola, Angela; Scuruchi, Michele; Calatroni, Alberto; Campo, Salvatore

    2015-01-01

    Beta-arrestin-2 is an adaptor protein that terminates G protein activation and seems to be involved in the modulation of the inflammatory response. Small hyaluronan (HA) fragments, such as 4-mer HA oligosaccharides, are known to interact with the toll-like receptor-4 (TLR-4) with consequent activation of the nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kB) that in turn stimulates the inflammation response. NF-kB activation is mediated by different pathways, in particular by the transforming growth factor-activated kinase-1 (TAK-1). Conversely, increased levels of protein kinase A (PKA), induced by cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP), seem to inhibit NF-kB activation. We studied the involvement and role of beta-arrestin-2 in mouse chondrocytes stimulated with 4-mer HA fragments. The exposure of chondrocytes to 4-mer HA produced a significant up-regulation in TLR-4, cAMP, beta-arrestin-2, TAK-1, protein 38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK), and PKA, both in terms of mRNA expression and of the related protein levels. NF-kB was significantly activated, thereby producing the transcription of pro-inflammatory mediators, including tumor necrosis factor alpha, interleukin-6, and interleukin-17. The treatment of 4-mer HA-stimulated chondrocytes with antibodies against beta-arrestin-2 and/or a specific PKA inhibitor, significantly increased the inflammatory response, while the treatment with a specific p38MAPK inhibitor significantly reduced the inflammatory response. Interestingly, the anti-inflammatory action exerted by beta-arrestin-2 appeared to be mediated in part through the direct inhibition of p38MAPK, preventing NF-kB activation, and in part through cAMP and PKA activation primed by G protein signaling, which exerted an inhibitory effect on NF-kB. Taken together, these results could be useful for future anti-inflammatory strategies. PMID:25318610

  2. Mutagenesis of the C1 Oxidation Pathway in Methanosarcina barkeri: New Insights into the Mtr/Mer Bypass Pathway▿

    PubMed Central

    Welander, Paula V.; Metcalf, William W.

    2008-01-01

    A series of Methanosarcina barkeri mutants lacking the genes encoding the enzymes involved in the C1 oxidation/reduction pathway were constructed. Mutants lacking the methyl-tetrahydromethanopterin (H4MPT):coenzyme M (CoM) methyltransferase-encoding operon (Δmtr), the methylene-H4MPT reductase-encoding gene (Δmer), the methylene-H4MPT dehydrogenase-encoding gene (Δmtd), and the formyl-methanofuran:H4MPT formyl-transferase-encoding gene (Δftr) all failed to grow using either methanol or H2/CO2 as a growth substrate, indicating that there is an absolute requirement for the C1 oxidation/reduction pathway for hydrogenotrophic and methylotrophic methanogenesis. The mutants also failed to grow on acetate, and we suggest that this was due to an inability to generate the reducing equivalents needed for biosynthetic reactions. Despite their lack of growth on methanol, the Δmtr and Δmer mutants were capable of producing methane from this substrate, whereas the Δmtd and Δftr mutants were not. Thus, there is an Mtr/Mer bypass pathway that allows oxidation of methanol to the level of methylene-H4MPT in M. barkeri. The data further suggested that formaldehyde may be an intermediate in this bypass; however, no methanol dehydrogenase activity was found in Δmtr cell extracts, nor was there an obligate role for the formaldehyde-activating enzyme (Fae), which has been shown to catalyze the condensation of formaldehyde and H4MPT in vitro. Both the Δmer and Δmtr mutants were able to grow on a combination of methanol plus acetate, but they did so by metabolic pathways that are clearly distinct from each other and from previously characterized methanogenic pathways. PMID:18178739

  3. Association between Australian Hajj Pilgrims' awareness of MERS-CoV, and their compliance with preventive measures and exposure to camels.

    PubMed

    Alqahtani, Amani S; Wiley, Kerrie E; Mushta, Sami M; Yamazaki, Kaoruko; BinDhim, Nasser F; Heywood, Anita E; Booy, Robert; Rashid, Harunor

    2016-05-01

    Through a prospective cohort study the relationship between travellers' awareness of MERS-CoV, and compliance with preventive measures and exposure to camels was evaluated among Australian Hajj pilgrims who attended Hajj in 2015. Only 28% of Australian Hajj pilgrims were aware of MERS-CoV in Saudi Arabia. Those who were aware of MERS-CoV were more likely to receive recommended vaccines [odds ratio (OR) 3.1, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.5-5.9, P < 0.01], but there was no significant difference in avoiding camels or their raw products during Hajj between those who were aware of MERS-CoV and those who were not (OR 1.2, 95% CI: 0.3-5.2, P = 0.7). Hajj pilgrims' awareness is reflected in some of their practices but not in all. PMID:27432904

  4. Montmorillonite Catalysis of 30-50 Mer Oligonucleotides: Laboratory Demonstration of Potential Steps in the Origin of the RNA World

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferris, James P.

    2002-08-01

    Elongation of the primer 32pdA(pdA)8pA proceeds by the reaction of the 5'-phosphorimidazolides of adenosine and uridine in the presence of montmorillonite clay. Daily addition of the activated nucleotides for up to 14 days results in the formation of 40-50 mers using the 5'-phosphorimidazolide of adenosine (ImpA) and 25-30 mers using the 5'-phosphorimidazolide of uridine (ImpU). The limitation on the lengths of the chains formed is not due to the inhibitors formed since the same chain lengths were formed using 2-3 times the amount of montmorillonite catalyst. The shorter oligomers formed by the addition of U monomers is not due to its greater rate of decomposition since it was found that both the A and the U adducts decompose at about the same rates. Alkaline phosphatase hydrolysis studies revealed that some of the oligomers are capped at the 5'-end to form, with ImpA, Ap32pdA(pdA)8pA(pA)n. The extent of capping depends on the reaction time and the purine or pyrimidine base in the activated mononucleotide. Hydrolysis with ribonuclease T2 followed by alkaline phosphatase determined the sites of the 3', 5'- and 2', 5'-phosphodiester bonding to the primer. The potential significance of the mineral catalyzed formation of 50 mer oligonucleotides to the origin of life based on RNA (the RNA world scenario) is discussed.

  5. Flow cytometry and K-mer analysis estimates of the genome sizes of Bemisia tabaci B and Q (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae)

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Li T.; Wang, Shao L.; Wu, Qing J.; Zhou, Xu G.; Xie, Wen; Zhang, You J.

    2015-01-01

    The genome sizes of the B- and Q-types of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennnadius) were estimated using flow cytometry (Drosophila melanogaster as the DNA reference standard and propidium iodide (PI) as the fluorochrome) and k-mer analysis. For flow cytometry, the mean nuclear DNA content was 0.686 pg for B-type males, 1.392 pg for B-type females, 0.680 pg for Q-type males, and 1.306 pg for Q-type females. Based on the relationship between DNA content and genome size (1 pg DNA = 980 Mbp), the haploid genome size of B. tabaci ranged from 640 to 682 Mbp. For k-mer analysis, genome size of B-type by two methods were consistent highly, but the k-mer depth distribution graph of Q-type was not enough perfect and the genome size was estimated about 60 M larger than its flow cytometry result. These results corroborate previous reports of genome size based on karyotype analysis and chromosome counting. However, these estimates differ from previous flow cytometry estimates, probably because of differences in the DNA reference standard and dyeing time, which were superior in the current study. For Q-type genome size difference by two method, some discussion were also stated, and all these results represent a useful foundation for B. tabaci genomics research. PMID:26042041

  6. STN area detection using K-NN classifiers for MER recordings in Parkinson patients during neurostimulator implant surgery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiaffino, L.; Rosado Muñoz, A.; Guerrero Martínez, J.; Francés Villora, J.; Gutiérrez, A.; Martínez Torres, I.; Kohan, y. D. R.

    2016-04-01

    Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) applies electric pulses into the subthalamic nucleus (STN) improving tremor and other symptoms associated to Parkinson’s disease. Accurate STN detection for proper location and implant of the stimulating electrodes is a complex task and surgeons are not always certain about final location. Signals from the STN acquired during DBS surgery are obtained with microelectrodes, having specific characteristics differing from other brain areas. Using supervised learning, a trained model based on previous microelectrode recordings (MER) can be obtained, being able to successfully classify the STN area for new MER signals. The K Nearest Neighbours (K-NN) algorithm has been successfully applied to STN detection. However, the use of the fuzzy form of the K-NN algorithm (KNN-F) has not been reported. This work compares the STN detection algorithm of K-NN and KNN-F. Real MER recordings from eight patients where previously classified by neurophysiologists, defining 15 features. Sensitivity and specificity for the classifiers are obtained, Wilcoxon signed rank non-parametric test is used as statistical hypothesis validation. We conclude that the performance of KNN-F classifier is higher than K-NN with p<0.01 in STN specificity.

  7. Epitope-Based Vaccine Target Screening against Highly Pathogenic MERS-CoV: An In Silico Approach Applied to Emerging Infectious Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Li, Sijin; Sun, Jing; Teng, Yumei; Wu, Meini; Li, Jianfan; Li, Yanhan; Hu, Ningzhu; Wang, Haixuan; Hu, Yunzhang

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) with pandemic potential is a major worldwide threat to public health. However, vaccine development for this pathogen lags behind as immunity associated with protection is currently largely unknown. In this study, an immunoinformatics-driven genome-wide screening strategy of vaccine targets was performed to thoroughly screen the vital and effective dominant immunogens against MERS-CoV. Conservancy and population coverage analysis of the epitopes were done by the Immune Epitope Database. The results showed that the nucleocapsid (N) protein of MERS-CoV might be a better protective immunogen with high conservancy and potential eliciting both neutralizing antibodies and T-cell responses compared with spike (S) protein. Further, the B-cell, helper T-cell and cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) epitopes were screened and mapped to the N protein. A total of 15 linear and 10 conformal B-cell epitopes that may induce protective neutralizing antibodies were obtained. Additionally, a total of 71 peptides with 9-mer core sequence were identified as helper T-cell epitopes, and 34 peptides were identified as CTL epitopes. Based on the maximum HLA binding alleles, top 10 helper T-cell epitopes and CTL epitopes that may elicit protective cellular immune responses against MERS-CoV were selected as MERS vaccine candidates. Population coverage analysis showed that the putative helper T-cell epitopes and CTL epitopes could cover the vast majority of the population in 15 geographic regions considered where vaccine would be employed. The B- and T-cell stimulation potentials of the screened epitopes is to be further validated for their efficient use as vaccines against MERS-CoV. Collectively, this study provides novel vaccine target candidates and may prompt further development of vaccines against MERS-CoV and other emerging infectious diseases. PMID:26641892

  8. Crystal structures of the organomercurial lyase MerB in its free and mercury-bound forms: insights into the mechanism of methylmercury degradation.

    PubMed

    Lafrance-Vanasse, Julien; Lefebvre, Maryse; Di Lello, Paola; Sygusch, Jurgen; Omichinski, James G

    2009-01-01

    Bacteria resistant to methylmercury utilize two enzymes (MerA and MerB) to degrade methylmercury to the less toxic elemental mercury. The crucial step is the cleavage of the carbon-mercury bond of methylmercury by the organomercurial lyase (MerB). In this study, we determined high resolution crystal structures of MerB in both the free (1.76-A resolution) and mercury-bound (1.64-A resolution) states. The crystal structure of free MerB is very similar to the NMR structure, but important differences are observed when comparing the two structures. In the crystal structure, an amino-terminal alpha-helix that is not present in the NMR structure makes contact with the core region adjacent to the catalytic site. This interaction between the amino-terminal helix and the core serves to bury the active site of MerB. The crystal structures also provide detailed insights into the mechanism of carbon-mercury bond cleavage by MerB. The structures demonstrate that two conserved cysteines (Cys-96 and Cys-159) play a role in substrate binding, carbon-mercury bond cleavage, and controlled product (ionic mercury) release. In addition, the structures establish that an aspartic acid (Asp-99) in the active site plays a crucial role in the proton transfer step required for the cleavage of the carbon-mercury bond. These findings are an important step in understanding the mechanism of carbon-mercury bond cleavage by MerB. PMID:19004822

  9. Effect of the antiestrogen ethamoxytriphetol (MER-25) on placental low density lipoprotein uptake and degradation in baboons

    SciTech Connect

    Henson, M.C.; Babischkin, J.S.; Pepe, G.J.; Albrecht, E.D.

    1988-05-01

    The present study determined if the decline in placental progesterone (P4) production that results from administration of the antiestrogen ethamoxytriphetol (MER-25) to pregnant baboons results from a change in placental low density lipoprotein (LDL) uptake and/or degradation. Pregnant baboons (Papio anubis) were untreated (n = 10) or received MER-25 (25 mg/kg BW, orally; n = 10) daily on days 140-170 of gestation (term, 184 days). Placentas were removed by cesarean section on day 170 of gestation, and villous tissue was dispersed with 0.1% collagenase at 37 C for 40 min. Placental cells (10(6)) were incubated in medium 199 (pH 7.2) for 12 h at 37 C with increasing amounts (5-100 micrograms) of (125I)LDL, with or without a 100-fold excess of unlabeled baboon LDL. Mean (+/- SE) peripheral serum P4 concentrations on days 140-170 of gestation were 51% lower (P less than 0.01) in MER-25-treated (5.7 +/- 0.3 ng/ml) than in untreated (11.6 +/- 0.5 ng/ml) baboons. The uptake of LDL was 56% lower (P less than 0.01) in placental cells from antiestrogen-treated (6.3 +/- 1.6 ng/micrograms cell protein) than in those from untreated (14.4 +/- 1.9 ng/micrograms cell protein) baboons. The dissociation constants for placental LDL uptake, as assessed by Scatchard analysis, however, were similar in untreated (0.80 microgram/ml) and MER-25-treated (0.76 microgram/ml) animals. The amount of (125I)LDL concomitantly degraded by cells from baboons that received MER-25 was 54% of that degraded by cells from untreated controls. The relative decline in LDL degradation by cells of antiestrogen-treated baboons was proportionate to the decline in overall LDL uptake. The results indicate, therefore, that antiestrogen treatment decreased the amount of placental LDL uptake, but did not change the affinity for the lipoprotein.

  10. Chemical Diversity Along the Traverse of the Mer Rover Opportunity at Meridiani Planum, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gellert, R.; Arvidson, R. E.; Clark, B. C.; Squyres, S.; Yen, A. S.

    2012-12-01

    The APXS on board the MER rover Opportunity measured the chemical composition of some 200 samples over the 8 year mission and 34.6 km from Eagle Crater to the Rim of Endeavour Crater. Till reaching the rim of Endeavour the bedrock was found to be sulphate rich, very homogeneous with up to ~ 40 % sulphates by weight. Decreasing Mg-S trends were found downhill within all craters accompanied by up to 3 fold enrichment in Cl. At Cape York, a rim segment of the Noachian Crater, Endeavour, significant lower sulphate levels were found so far in the bedrock. Ejecta from secondary craters show significant signs of possible hydrothermal activity with drastically enriched Zn and Ni levels, accompanied by elevated P and Br values and changes in major chemistry. Many one inch wide bright veins with elevated Ca and S levels in good molar match for Calcium-sulphate were found and interpreted as Gypsum based on multi-spectral analysis of Pancam data. The soils consist of at least two end members, basaltic soil similar to the previous landing sites investigated with APXS or XRF and a Fe and Ni rich population of spherules and angular fragments, known to be rich in hematite from Moessbauer measurements. Comparisons with the first soil measurements in Gale Crater with the MSL APXS will be presented. Many erratics, Fe-Ni meteorites with chemical signs of surface alteration, basaltic ejecta, some identified stemming from Mars were measured by Opportunity, in addition to rocks identified as stony meteorites.. The diversity of the chemical composition is discussed under the aspect of changes in the alteration history and the environmental conditions of their formation. The comparison with mineralogical findings from orbital instruments will be discussed.

  11. The MerR-Like Transcriptional Regulator BrlR Contributes to Pseudomonas aeruginosa Biofilm Tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Julie

    2012-01-01

    Biofilms are composed of surface-attached microbial communities. A hallmark of biofilms is their profound tolerance of antimicrobial agents. While biofilm drug tolerance has been considered to be multifactorial, our findings indicate, instead, that bacteria within biofilms employ a classical regulatory mechanism to resist the action of antimicrobial agents. Here we report that the transcriptional regulator BrlR, a member of the MerR family of multidrug transport activators, plays a role in the high-level drug tolerance of biofilms formed by Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Expression of brlR was found to be biofilm specific, with brlR inactivation not affecting biofilm formation, motility, or pslA expression but increasing ndvB expression. Inactivation of brlR rendered biofilms but not planktonic cells grown to exponential or stationary phase significantly more susceptible to hydrogen peroxide and five different classes of antibiotics by affecting the MICs and the recalcitrance of biofilms to killing by microbicidal antimicrobial agents. In contrast, overexpression of brlR rendered both biofilms and planktonic cells more tolerant to the same compounds. brlR expression in three cystic fibrosis (CF) isolates was elevated regardless of the mode of growth, suggesting a selection for constitutive brlR expression upon in vivo biofilm formation associated with chronic infections. Despite increased brlR expression, however, isolate CF1-8 was as susceptible to tobramycin as was a ΔbrlR mutant because of a nonsense mutation in brlR. Our results indicate for the first time that biofilms employ a specific regulatory mechanism to resist the action of antimicrobial agents in a BrlR-dependent manner which affects MIC and recalcitrance to killing by microbicidal antimicrobial agents. PMID:22730129

  12. Automated Recognition of Geologically Significant Shapes in MER PANCAM and MI Images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, Robert; Shipman, Mark; Roush, Ted L.

    2004-01-01

    Autonomous recognition of scientifically important information provides the capability of: 1) Prioritizing data return; 2) Intelligent data compression; 3) Reactive behavior onboard robotic vehicles. Such capabilities are desirable as mission scenarios include longer durations with decreasing interaction from mission control. To address such issues, we have implemented several computer algorithms, intended to autonomously recognize morphological shapes of scientific interest within a software architecture envisioned for future rover missions. Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) instrument payloads include a Panoramic Camera (PANCAM) and Microscopic Imager (MI). These provide a unique opportunity to evaluate our algorithms when applied to data obtained from the surface of Mars. Early in the mission we applied our algorithms to images available at the mission web site (http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/images.html), even though these are not at full resolution. Some algorithms would normally use ancillary information, e.g. camera pointing and position of the sun, but these data were not readily available. The initial results of applying our algorithms to the PANCAM and MI images are encouraging. The horizon is recognized in all images containing it; such information could be used to eliminate unwanted areas from the image prior to data transmission to Earth. Additionally, several rocks were identified that represent targets for the mini-thermal emission spectrometer. Our algorithms also recognize the layers, identified by mission scientists. Such information could be used to prioritize data return or in a decision-making process regarding future rover activities. The spherules seen in MI images were also autonomously recognized. Our results indicate that reliable recognition of scientifically relevant morphologies in images is feasible.

  13. Detection of Specific IgA Antibodies against a Novel Deamidated 8-Mer Gliadin Peptide in Blood Plasma Samples from Celiac Patients

    PubMed Central

    Vallejo-Diez, Sara; Bernardo, David; Moreno, María de Lourdes; Muñoz-Suano, Alba; Fernández-Salazar, Luis; Calvo, Carmen; Sousa, Carolina; Garrote, José A.; Cebolla, Ángel; Arranz, Eduardo

    2013-01-01

    We studied whether celiac disease (CD) patients produce antibodies against a novel gliadin peptide specifically generated in the duodenum of CD patients by a previously described pattern of CD-specific duodenal proteases. Fingerprinting and ion-trap mass spectrometry of CD-specific duodenal gliadin-degrading protease pattern revealed a new 8-mer gliadin-derived peptide. An ELISA against synthetic deamidated 8-mer peptides (DGP 8-mer) was used to study the presence of IgA anti-DGP 8-mer antibodies in plasma samples from 81 children (31 active CD patients (aCD), 17 CD patients on a gluten-free diet (GFD), 10 healthy controls (C) and 23 patients with other gastrointestinal pathology (GP)) and 101 adults (16 aCD, 12 GFD, 27 C and 46 GP-patients). Deamidation of the 8-mer peptide significantly increased the reactivity of the IgA antibodies from CD patients against the peptide. Significant IgA anti-DGP 8-mer antibodies levels were detected in 93.5% of aCD-, 11.8% of GFD- and 4.3% of GP-patients in children. In adults, antibodies were detected in 81.3% of aCD-patients and 8.3% of GFD-patients while were absent in 100% of C- and GP-patients. Duodenal CD-specific gliadin degrading proteases release an 8-mer gliadin peptide that once deamidated is an antigen for specific IgA antibodies in CD patients which may provide a new accurate diagnostic tool in CD. PMID:24278359

  14. Transmission of SARS and MERS coronaviruses and influenza virus in healthcare settings: the possible role of dry surface contamination.

    PubMed

    Otter, J A; Donskey, C; Yezli, S; Douthwaite, S; Goldenberg, S D; Weber, D J

    2016-03-01

    Viruses with pandemic potential including H1N1, H5N1, and H5N7 influenza viruses, and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)/Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronaviruses (CoV) have emerged in recent years. SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and influenza virus can survive on surfaces for extended periods, sometimes up to months. Factors influencing the survival of these viruses on surfaces include: strain variation, titre, surface type, suspending medium, mode of deposition, temperature and relative humidity, and the method used to determine the viability of the virus. Environmental sampling has identified contamination in field-settings with SARS-CoV and influenza virus, although the frequent use of molecular detection methods may not necessarily represent the presence of viable virus. The importance of indirect contact transmission (involving contamination of inanimate surfaces) is uncertain compared with other transmission routes, principally direct contact transmission (independent of surface contamination), droplet, and airborne routes. However, influenza virus and SARS-CoV may be shed into the environment and be transferred from environmental surfaces to hands of patients and healthcare providers. Emerging data suggest that MERS-CoV also shares these properties. Once contaminated from the environment, hands can then initiate self-inoculation of mucous membranes of the nose, eyes or mouth. Mathematical and animal models, and intervention studies suggest that contact transmission is the most important route in some scenarios. Infection prevention and control implications include the need for hand hygiene and personal protective equipment to minimize self-contamination and to protect against inoculation of mucosal surfaces and the respiratory tract, and enhanced surface cleaning and disinfection in healthcare settings. PMID:26597631

  15. State of Knowledge and Data Gaps of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Abdallat, Mohammad Mousa; Abroug, Fekri; Al-Dhahry, Said Hamed; Al-Hajri, Mohammed M.; Al-Hakeem, Rafat; AlHosani, Farida Ismail; Al Qasrawi, Sultan Mohammed Abdalla; Al-Romaihi, Hamad Eid; Assiri, Abdullah; Baillie, J Kenneth; Embarek, Peter Karim Ben; Salah, Afif Ben; Blümel, Benjamin; Briese, Thomas; Buchholz, Udo; Cognat, Sebastien Bruno Francois; Defang, Gabriel N.; De La Rocque, Stéphane; Donatelli, Isabella; Drosten, Christian; Drury, Patrick A.; Eremin, Sergey R.; Ferguson, Neil M.; Fontanet, Arnaud; Formenty, Pierre B.H.; Fouchier, Ron A.M.; Gao, Christine Q; Garcia, Erika; Gerber, Susan; Guery, Benoît; Haagmans, Bart L.; Haddadin, Aktham Jeries; Hardiman, Maxwell C.; Hensley, Lisa E.; Hugonnet, Stéphane; Hui, David SC; Isla, Nicolas; Karesh, William; Koopmans, Marion; Kuehne, Anna; Lipkin, W. Ian; Mafi, Ali R.; Malik, Mamunur; Manuguerra, Jean-Claude; Memish, Ziad; Mounts, Anthony W.; Mumford, Elizabeth; Opoka, Langoya; Osterhaus, Ab; Oxenford, Christopher J.; Pang, Vincent; Pebody, Richard; Peiris, J. S. Malik; Plotkin, Bruce Jay; Poumerol, Gilles; Reusken, Chantal; Rezza, Giovanni; Roth, Cathy E.; Shindo, Nahoko; Shumate, Alice M.; Siwula, Molly A.; Slim, Amine; Smallwood, Catherine; van der Werf, Sylvie; Van Kerkhove, Maria D.; Zambon, Maria

    2013-01-01

    Background: Between September 2012 and 22 October 2013, 144 laboratory-confirmed and 17 probable MERS-CoV cases from nine countries were notified to WHO. Methods: We summarize what is known about the epidemiology, virology, phylogeny and emergence of MERS-CoV to inform public health policies. Results: The median age of patients (n=161) was 50 years (range 14 months to 94 years), 64.5% were male and 63.4% experienced severe respiratory disease. 76.0% of patients were reported to have ≥1 underlying medical condition and fatal cases, compared to recovered or asymptomatic cases were more likely to have an underlying condition (86.8% vs. 42.4%, p<0.001). Analysis of genetic sequence data suggests multiple independent introductions into human populations and modelled estimates using epidemiologic and genetic data suggest R0 is <1, though the upper range of estimates may exceed 1. Index/sporadic cases (cases with no epidemiologic-link to other cases) were more likely to be older (median 59.0 years vs. 43.0 years, p<0.001) compared to secondary cases, although these proportions have declined over time. 80.9% vs. 67.2% of index/sporadic and secondary cases, respectively, reported ≥1 underlying condition. Clinical presentation ranges from asymptomatic to severe pneumonia with acute respiratory distress syndrome and multi-organ failure. Nearly all symptomatic patients presented with respiratory symptoms and 1/3 of patients also had gastrointestinal symptoms. Conclusions: Sustained human-to-human transmission of MERS-CoV has not been observed. Outbreaks have been extinguished without overly aggressive isolation and quarantine suggesting that transmission of virus may be stopped with implementation of appropriate infection control measures. PMID:24270606

  16. An In-Situ Rb-Sr Dating & Organics Characterization Instrument For A MER+ Sized Rover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, F.; Whitaker, T.; Nowicki, K.; Zacny, K.; Pierce, J.

    2012-12-01

    We posit that a Mars in-situ geochronology mission that will triage and validate samples for Mars Sample Return (MSR) is technically feasible in the 2018-2022 time frame and addresses the competing scientific, political, and fiscal requirements for flight in this decade.The mission must be responsive to the astrobiological and chronological science goals of the MEPAG, Decadal Survey (DS), and E2E-iSAG, and avoid the MSR appearance of long term political commitment and cost. These requirements can best be accomplished by a rover with a coring drill. JPL has reassessed the MER landing system performance, and determined that the system is capable of significantly higher landed mass (~40-60 kg plus reserve), allowing more sophisticated instruments to be carried. The instrument package is comprised of a time of flight (TOF) mass spectrometer combined with a laser desorption resonance ionization source to sensitively measure isobar free Rb-Sr isotopes for geochronology and organics characterization. The desorption laser is also used with a μRaman/LIBS for mineral characterization, which in combination with the TOF, will additionally provide measurements of K-Ar isotopes for a second form of radiometric dating. The laser desorption resonance ionization mass spectrometry (LDRIMS) technique avoids the interference and mass resolution issues associated with geochronology measurements, and has miniaturization potential. A sample is placed in the TOF mass spectrometer and surface atoms, molecules, and ions are desorbed with a 213 nm laser. Ions are suppressed by an electric field and the plume of expanding particles is present for many μs, during which it is first illuminated with laser light tuned to ionize only Sr, and then 1-3 μs later, for Rb. We have partially miniaturized the instrument, including Sr lasers, ablation laser, and mass spectrometer, and will soon to start using the instrument for field measurements. Our current prototype can measure the isotope ratio of

  17. ROCK AND SOIL PHYSICAL PROPERTIES AT THE MER GUSEV CRATER AND MERIDIANI PLANUM LANDING SITES

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ming, Douglas W.; Richter, L.; Arvidson, R.; Bell, J.; Cabrol, N.; Gorevan, S.; Greeley, R.; Herkenhoff, K.

    2006-01-01

    Following the successful landings of both Mars Exploration Rover (MER) vehicles at Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum, respectively, their Athena suite of instruments is being used to study the geologic history of these two very different landing sites on Mars that had been selected on the basis of showing different types of evidence for aqueous processes in the planet s past. Utilizing the on-board instruments as well as the rovers mobility system, a wide range of physical properties investigations is carried out as well - the subject of this abstract - that provide additional information on the geology and processes at the sites. Results of the mission in general as well as of the physical properties studies thus far greatly exceed expectations in that observations and measurements by both vehicles show a rich variety in materials and processes: the Gusev site in the vicinity of the lander is remarkably flat and generally devoid of large rocks along traverses up to the time of this writing (approx.Sol 50) and suggestive of a deflated surface with generally only thin veneers of bright dust while exhibiting evidence of a widespread occurrence of a crust from cemented fines that has been observed to fail in the form of blocky clods when disturbed by vehicle rolling action; numerous small and shallow depressions - presumably created by impacts - are observed at the site which are infilled with bright, fine-grained material that likewise appears indurated and which was studied by a trenching experiment; small ripple bedforms are scattered across the site and were characterized in terms of particle size distributions. At the Meridiani site, studies so far - up to approx.Sol 33 - have focussed on soils and the rock outcrop encountered within the approx.20 m diameter crater that the spacecraft came to rest in: from a physical properties point of view, a mantle of dark, well-sorted, apparently basaltic sand with small to moderate cohesion has been of interest - and has

  18. Modelling impacts of offshore wind farms on trophic web: the Courseulles-sur-Mer case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raoux, Aurore; Pezy, Jean-Philippe; Dauvin, Jean-Claude; Tecchio, samuele; Degraer, Steven; Wilhelmsson, Dan; Niquil, Nathalie

    2016-04-01

    The French government is planning the construction of three offshore wind farms in Normandy. These offshore wind farms will integrate into an ecosystem already subject to a growing number of anthropogenic disturbances such as transportation, fishing, sediment deposit, and sediment extraction. The possible effects of this cumulative stressors on ecosystem functioning are still unknown, but they could impact their resilience, making them susceptible to changes from one stable state to another. Understanding the behaviour of these marine coastal complex systems is essential in order to anticipate potential state changes, and to implement conservation actions in a sustainable manner. Currently, there are no global and integrated studies on the effects of construction and exploitation of offshore wind farms. Moreover, approaches are generally focused on the conservation of some species or groups of species. Here, we develop a holistic and integrated view of ecosystem impacts through the use of trophic webs modelling tools. Trophic models describe the interaction between biological compartments at different trophic levels and are based on the quantification of flow of energy and matter in ecosystems. They allow the application of numerical methods for the characterization of emergent properties of the ecosystem, also called Ecological Network Analysis (ENA). These indices have been proposed as ecosystem health indicators as they have been demonstrated to be sensitive to different impacts on marine ecosystems. We present here in detail the strategy for analysing the potential environmental impacts of the construction of the Courseulles-sur-Mer offshore wind farm (Bay of Seine) such as the reef effect through the use of the Ecopath with Ecosim software. Similar Ecopath simulations will be made in the future on the Le Tréport offshore wind farm site. Results will contribute to a better knowledge of the impacts of the offshore wind farms on ecosystems. They also allow to

  19. Tumor Imaging and Targeting Potential of an Hsp70-Derived 14-Mer Peptide

    PubMed Central

    Oellinger, Rupert; Breuninger, Stephanie; Rad, Roland; Pockley, Alan G.; Multhoff, Gabriele

    2014-01-01

    Background We have previously used a unique mouse monoclonal antibody cmHsp70.1 to demonstrate the selective presence of a membrane-bound form of Hsp70 (memHsp70) on a variety of leukemia cells and on single cell suspensions derived from solid tumors of different entities, but not on non-transformed cells or cells from corresponding ’healthy‘ tissue. This antibody can be used to image tumors in vivo and target them for antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity. Tumor-specific expression of memHsp70 therefore has the potential to be exploited for theranostic purposes. Given the advantages of peptides as imaging and targeting agents, this study assessed whether a 14-mer tumor penetrating peptide (TPP; TKDNNLLGRFELSG), the sequence of which is derived from the oligomerization domain of Hsp70 which is expressed on the cell surface of tumor cells, can also be used for targeting membrane Hsp70 positive (memHsp70+) tumor cells, in vitro. Methodology/Principal Findings The specificity of carboxy-fluorescein (CF-) labeled TPP (TPP) to Hsp70 was proven in an Hsp70 knockout mammary tumor cell system. TPP specifically binds to different memHsp70+ mouse and human tumor cell lines and is rapidly taken up via endosomes. Two to four-fold higher levels of CF-labeled TPP were detected in MCF7 (82% memHsp70+) and MDA-MB-231 (75% memHsp70+) cells compared to T47D cells (29% memHsp70+) that exhibit a lower Hsp70 membrane positivity. After 90 min incubation, TPP co-localized with mitochondrial membranes in memHsp70+ tumors. Although there was no evidence that any given vesicle population was specifically localized, fluorophore-labeled cmHsp70.1 antibody and TPP preferentially accumulated in the proximity of the adherent surface of cultured cells. These findings suggest a potential association between membrane Hsp70 expression and cytoskeletal elements that are involved in adherence, the establishment of intercellular synapses and/or membrane reorganization. Conclusions

  20. Proglacial sediment supply and channel evolution of the Arveyron of the Mer de Glace since the early 20th c.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthet, Johan; Astrade, Laurent; Ravanel, Ludovic; Ployon, Estelle

    2015-04-01

    The Arveyron of the Mer de Glace is the emissary of the most famous and largest French glacier. The latter has dramatically shrunk since the end of the Little Ice Age (LIA), such as every alpine glacier: the front has registered a retreat of 2.7 km since 1820 and a recent modelling showed a likely decrease of an extra km by 2040. The Arveyron and its surroundings are deeply impacted by the retreat. Then, dynamics of proglacial streams and of lateral moraines have been studied at different time and space scales through various methods: airborne and terrestrial Lidar DEM comparisons, mapping from orthophotos, 2D and 3D monoplotting to quantify past events from old terrestrial pictures, etc. By coupling studies on moraines and on stream morphology we wanted to better understand the influence of glacier retreat on sediment supply and transport downstream. Results show the evolution of the stream sediment sources linked to the glacier retreat. Before the middle of the 20th century, till was the main sediment source and was released by major flood events such as GLOFs. Now, geomorphic activity is especially important on the right lateral moraine into the recently deglaciated hanging valley of the Mer de Glace but also in the moraine flanks of the current glacier tongue (many landslides occurred during the Summer 2014). The recent glacier retreat has also formed sediments sinks such as two proglacial lakes which are progressively filling. These lakes work as big sediment traps until they will disappear (around 2017). Fluvial dynamics of the Arveyron depends on the connectivity with potential sediments sources. This is why we crossed upstream studies with the channel evolution on its fan. Arveyron channel has got narrower and incised for at least a century. Such evolution should mean a decreasing sediment yield, but anthropic factors play also an important role on stream morphology. The main anthorpic impact is the complex subglacial harnessing of the Mer de Glace. The

  1. Structural and mutational analysis of the interaction between the Middle-East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) papain-like protease and human ubiquitin.

    PubMed

    Lei, Jian; Hilgenfeld, Rolf

    2016-08-01

    The papain-like protease (PL(pro)) of Middle-East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) has proteolytic, deubiquitinating, and deISGylating activities. The latter two are involved in the suppression of the antiviral innate immune response of the host cell. To contribute to an understanding of this process, we present here the X-ray crystal structure of a complex between MERS-CoV PL(pro) and human ubiquitin (Ub) that is devoid of any covalent linkage between the two proteins. Five regions of the PL(pro) bind to two areas of the Ub. The C-terminal five residues of Ub, RLRGG, are similar to the P5-P1 residues of the polyprotein substrates of the PL(pro) and are responsible for the major part of the interaction between the two macromolecules. Through sitedirected mutagenesis, we demonstrate that conserved Asp165 and non-conserved Asp164 are important for the catalytic activities of MERS-CoV PL(pro). The enzyme appears not to be optimized for catalytic efficiency; thus, replacement of Phe269 by Tyr leads to increased peptidolytic and deubiquitinating activities. Ubiquitin binding by MERS-CoV PL(pro) involves remarkable differences compared to the corresponding complex with SARS-CoV PL(pro). The structure and the mutational study help understand common and unique features of the deubiquitinating activity of MERS-CoV PL(pro). PMID:27245450

  2. Infectious diseases epidemic threats and mass gatherings: refocusing global attention on the continuing spread of the Middle East Respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).

    PubMed

    Zumla, Alimuddin; Alagaili, Abdulaziz N; Cotten, Matthew; Azhar, Esam I

    2016-01-01

    Media and World Health Organization (WHO) attention on Zika virus transmission at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and the 2015 Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa diverted the attention of global public health authorities from other lethal infectious diseases with epidemic potential. Mass gatherings such as the annual Hajj pilgrimage hosted by Kingdom of Saudi Arabia attract huge crowds from all continents, creating high-risk conditions for the rapid global spread of infectious diseases. The highly lethal Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) remains in the WHO list of top emerging diseases likely to cause major epidemics. The 2015 MERS-CoV outbreak in South Korea, in which 184 MERS cases including 33 deaths occurred in 2 months, that was imported from the Middle East by a South Korean businessman was a wake-up call for the global community to refocus attention on MERS-CoV and other emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases with epidemic potential. The international donor community and Middle Eastern countries should make available resources for, and make a serious commitment to, taking forward a "One Health" global network for proactive surveillance, rapid detection, and prevention of MERS-CoV and other epidemic infectious diseases threats. PMID:27604081

  3. Evolution of hut access facing glacier shrinkage in the Mer de Glace basin (Mont Blanc massif, France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mourey, Jacques; Ravanel, Ludovic

    2016-04-01

    Given the evolution of high mountain environment due to global warming, mountaineering routes and huts accesses are more and more strongly affected by glacial shrinkage and concomitant gravity processes, but almost no studies have been conducted on this relationship. The aim of this research is to describe and explain the evolution over the last century of the access to the five alpine huts around the Mer de Glace glacier (Mont Blanc massif), the larger French glacier (length = 11.5 km, area = 30 km²), a major place for Alpine tourism since 1741 and the birthplace of mountaineering, by using several methods (comparing photographs, surveying, collecting historical documents). While most of the 20th century shows no marked changes, loss of ice thickness and associated erosion of lateral moraines generate numerous and significant changes since the 1990s. Boulder falls, rockfalls and landslides are the main geomorphological processes that affect the access, while the glacier surface lowering makes access much longer and more unstable. The danger is then greatly increased and the access must be relocated and/or equipped more and more frequently (e.g. a total of 520 m of ladders has been added). This questions the future accessibility to the huts, jeopardizing an important part of mountaineering and its linked economy in the Mer de Glace area.

  4. An ensemble distance measure of k-mer and Natural Vector for the phylogenetic analysis of multiple-segmented viruses.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hsin-Hsiung

    2016-06-01

    The Natural Vector combined with Hausdorff distance has been successfully applied for classifying and clustering multiple-segmented viruses. Additionally, k-mer methods also yield promising results for global genome comparison. It is not known whether combining these two approaches can lead to more accurate results. The author proposes a method of combining the Hausdorff distances of the 5-mer counting vectors and natural vectors which achieves the best classification without cutting off any sample. Using the proposed method to predict the taxonomic labels for the 2363 NCBI reference viral genomes dataset, the accuracy rates are 96.95%, 94.37%, 99.41% and 93.82% for the Baltimore, family, subfamily, and genus labels, respectively. We further applied the proposed method to 48 isolates of the influenza A H7N9 viruses which have eight complete segments of nucleotide sequences. The single-linkage clustering trees and the statistical hypothesis testing results all indicate that the proposed ensemble distance measure can cluster viruses well using all of their segments of genome sequences. PMID:26972479

  5. Chinese social media reaction to the MERS-CoV and avian influenza A(H7N9) outbreaks

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background As internet and social media use have skyrocketed, epidemiologists have begun to use online data such as Google query data and Twitter trends to track the activity levels of influenza and other infectious diseases. In China, Weibo is an extremely popular microblogging site that is equivalent to Twitter. Capitalizing on the wealth of public opinion data contained in posts on Weibo, this study used Weibo as a measure of the Chinese people’s reactions to two different outbreaks: the 2012 Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak, and the 2013 outbreak of human infection of avian influenza A(H7N9) in China. Methods Keyword searches were performed in Weibo data collected by The University of Hong Kong’s Weiboscope project. Baseline values were determined for each keyword and reaction values per million posts in the days after outbreak information was released to the public. Results The results show that the Chinese people reacted significantly to both outbreaks online, where their social media reaction was two orders of magnitude stronger to the H7N9 influenza outbreak that happened in China than the MERS-CoV outbreak that was far away from China. Conclusions These results demonstrate that social media could be a useful measure of public awareness and reaction to disease outbreak information released by health authorities. PMID:24359669

  6. Receptor Tyrosine Kinases, TYRO3, AXL, and MER, Demonstrate Distinct Patterns and Complex Regulation of Ligand-induced Activation*

    PubMed Central

    Tsou, Wen-I; Nguyen, Khanh-Quynh N.; Calarese, Daniel A.; Garforth, Scott J.; Antes, Anita L.; Smirnov, Sergey V.; Almo, Steve C.; Birge, Raymond B.; Kotenko, Sergei V.

    2014-01-01

    TYRO3, AXL, and MER receptors (TAMs) are three homologous type I receptor-tyrosine kinases that are activated by endogenous ligands, protein S (PROS1) and growth arrest-specific gene 6 (GAS6). These ligands can either activate TAMs as soluble factors, or, in turn, opsonize phosphatidylserine (PS) on apoptotic cells (ACs) and serve as bridging molecules between ACs and TAMs. Abnormal expression and activation of TAMs have been implicated in promoting proliferation and survival of cancer cells, as well as in suppressing anti-tumor immunity. Despite the fact that TAM receptors share significant similarity, little is known about the specificity of interaction between TAM receptors and their ligands, particularly in the context of ACs, and about the functional diversity of TAM receptors. To study ligand-mediated activation of TAMs, we generated a series of reporter cell lines expressing chimeric TAM receptors. Using this system, we found that each TAM receptor has a unique pattern of interaction with and activation by GAS6 and PROS1, which is also differentially affected by the presence of ACs, PS-containing lipid vesicles and enveloped virus. We also demonstrated that γ-carboxylation of ligands is essential for the full activation of TAMs and that soluble immunoglobulin-like TAM domains act as specific ligand antagonists. These studies demonstrate that, despite their similarity, TYRO3, AXL, and MER are likely to perform distinct functions in both immunoregulation and the recognition and removal of ACs. PMID:25074926

  7. Effects of 8-mer acidic peptide concentration on the morphology and photoluminescence of synthesized ZnO nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon, Chung Hee; Tousi, Marzieh; Cheeney, Joseph; Ngo-Duc, Tam-Triet; Zuo, Zheng; Liu, Jianlin; Haberer, Elaine D.

    2015-11-01

    An 8-mer ZnO-binding peptide, VPGAAEHT, was identified using a M13 pVIII phage display library and employed as an additive during aqueous-based ZnO synthesis at 65 °C. Unlike most other well-studied ZnO-binding sequences which are strongly basic (pI > pH 7), the 8-mer peptide was overall acidic (pI < pH 7) in character, including only a single basic residue. The selected peptide strongly influenced ZnO nanostructure formation. Morphology and optical emission properties were found to be dependent on the concentration of peptide additive. Using lower peptide concentrations (<0.1 mM), single crystal hexagonal rods and platelets were produced, and using higher peptide concentrations (≥0.1 mM), polycrystalline layered platelets, yarn-like structures, and microspheres were assembled. Photoluminescence analysis revealed a characteristic ZnO band-edge peak, as well as sub-bandgap emission peaks. Defect-related green emission, typically associated with surface-related oxygen and zinc vacancies, was significantly reduced by the peptide additive, while blue emission, attributable to oxygen and zinc interstitials, emerged with increased peptide concentrations. Peptide-directed synthesis of ZnO materials may be useful for gas sensing and photocatalytic applications in which properly engineered morphology and defect levels have demonstrated enhanced performance.

  8. Prevalence of comorbidities in the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV): a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Badawi, Alaa; Ryoo, Seung Gwan

    2016-08-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is associated with life-threatening severe illnesses and a mortality rate of approximately 35%, particularly in patients with underlying comorbidities. A systematic analysis of 637 MERS-CoV cases suggests that diabetes and hypertension are equally prevalent in approximately 50% of the patients. Cardiac diseases are present in 30% and obesity in 16% of the cases. These conditions down-regulate the synthesis of proinflammatory cytokines and impair the host's innate and humoral immune systems. In conclusion, protection against MERS-CoV and other respiratory infections can be improved if public health vaccination strategies are tailored to target persons with chronic disorders. PMID:27352628

  9. Regulation of placental low-density lipoprotein uptake in baboons by estrogen: Dose-dependent effects of the anti-estrogen ethamoxytriphetol (MER-25)

    SciTech Connect

    Henson, M.C.; Pepe, G.J.; Albrecht, E.D. )

    1991-07-01

    In the present study, increasing amounts of the anti-estrogen 1-(p-2-diethylaminoethoxyphenyl)-1-phenyl-2-p-methoxyphenoletha nol (MER-25) were administered to pregnant baboons (Papio anubis) to block the action of endogenous estrogen and to determine effect on placental low-density lipoprotein (LDL) uptake. Pregnant baboons were untreated (n = 8) or received MER-25 orally at a dosage of 25 (n = 10), 50 (n = 8), or 75 (n = 4) mg/kg BW daily on Days 140-170 of gestation (term = 184 days). Placentas were removed on Day 170 of gestation and villous tissue was dispersed with 0.1% collagenase. Placental cells were incubated in Medium 199 for 12 h at 37{degrees} C with increasing amounts of 125I-LDL, with or without a 100-fold excess of unlabeled baboon LDL. Mean ({plus minus} SEM) placental uptake (ng/micrograms cell protein) of 125I-LDL was 55% (6.4 {plus minus} 1.0), 75% (3.6 {plus minus} 0.7), and 81% (2.7 {plus minus} 0.2) lower (p less than 0.001) in baboons that received MER-25 in doses of 25, 50, and 75 mg/kg BW, respectively, than in untreated baboons (14.2 {plus minus} 1.3 ng/micrograms cell protein). Maximal effect occurred with 50 mg MER-25, because LDL uptake was not further decreased with greater levels of MER-25. Dissociation constants for placental LDL uptake, as determined by Scatchard analysis, were unaltered by anti-estrogen treatment. The amount of 125I-LDL degradation by placental cells of untreated and MER-25-treated baboons was proportional to LDL uptake.

  10. Paleomagnetic Evidence for the Tectono-Stratigraphic Evolution of the Mt.Galili Area / MER / Ethiopia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popp, F.; Scholger, R.

    2007-12-01

    The Mt.Galili area (N 9,77°, E 040,55°) is the focus of current anthropological studies on early hominid evolution *[4]. The Mount Galili Formation (MGF)*[5] is subdivided into seven Members, each representing a sedimentary cycle, sustaining temporally interruptions by volcanic activity. Our paleomagnetic investigation concentrates on ascertaining primary magnetisation vectors (PMV) of volcanic layers embodied within the MGF, applying alternating field and thermal magnetic cleaning methods. Magnetite and ti-magnetite are the main carriers of the NRM (basalt, ignimbrite). Hematite shares in amounts up to 20%, Goethite occasionally participates up to 30% in magnitude of the NRM components. Two events of magnetic polarity reversals terminate a magnetic inverse period designating the lot of the MGF unit. The amount of the PMV's rotation in respect to an expected paleodirection*[1] of 183°/-13° are in the range of 1°-52° . The resulting mean PMV data provide implications on (A) rift-related block rotation / tilting in relation to the stable African crust since the Pliocene and they also support (B) stratigraphic age determinations of the MGF: A: Rotational movements cluster in 4 sectors: (a) The SE sector demonstrates almost unchanged orientation of the PMVs whereas (b) it's continuation to the NW sector suffered clockwise rotational tilting (up to 12° rot / 19° tilt). (c) The SW sector (Mt.Galili area s.str.) in contrast embrace a unique counterclockwise rotation component of 7°-17°, but the modulus of vector inclination, concerning individual rift blocks, is variable in either direction. (d) The NE sector (Satkawini) sustained the major counterclockwise rotation (41°°-52° rot / 3°- 17° tilt) We consider the Mt.Galili area being the place where trans-tensional tectonics were active during the late Miocene to create the lateral off-set of magmatic segments marking the centre of the MER. This tectonics are considered to belong to a arcuate accommodation

  11. Comparing the Chemistry for the Pathfinder, MER and MSL Martian Landing Sites with APXS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gellert, R.; Arvidson, R. E.; Clark, B. C.; Grotzinger, J. P.; Squyres, S. W.; Yen, A. S.

    2013-12-01

    The Alpha-Particle-X-ray Spectrometer is part of the science payload of all recent NASA Mars rover missions. It allows detailed comparison of the chemical composition and overall findings from rocks and soils at 4 landing sites. It can be even extended to the soil measurements performed with XRF on the two Viking landers. Typical soils at all 6 landing sites are very similar in chemical composition as well as mineralogy from instruments like Moessbauer on MER and CHEMIN on MSL. Beside a dominant basaltic composition the soil contains a significant altered and volatile rich component that is characterized by a constant S/Cl ratio in the APXS data. The overall similarity of the soils as well as the finding that soils around the 30 wt % SO3 rich bedrocks at Meridiani are not elevated in S, indicates the presence of a global distributed or at least large scale homogenized component in the Martian soil. This allows extending the SAM and CHEMIN findings in the altered and volatile components in the Gale Rocknest soils to other landing sites. However, in Gusev Crater anomalous subsurface soils were found - silica and hydrated ferric sulfate rich - that could indicate local fumarole and leaching activities. The sulfate rich Meridiani bedrock, called Burns formations, was documented to be remarkably homogeneous over the ~ 15 miles from the landing site at Eagle Crater to the base of the rim at Endurance Crater. Here for the first time a rover entered an area where evidence for clays is given by orbital CRISM data. With Opportunity's mineralogy instruments out of commission, the APXS was used to document the chemistry of the encountered outcrops. Having a composition close to the average Mars, one main characteristic feature of rocks at the rim is the low sulfur content compared to the younger Meridiani bedrock. The outcrops show post depositional cracks and veins filled with Calciumsulfate and Chlorine rich surface alteration rinds. A smaller outcrop called Esperance has

  12. Successful Mars remote sensors, MO THEMIS and MER Mini-TES

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silverman, Steven; Christensen, Phil

    2003-11-01

    Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS), covering the spectral range 5-29 μm at 10 cm-1 spectral resolution. Launched in June 2003, one Mini-TES instrument will fly to Mars aboard each of the two missions of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Project (MER), named Spirit and Opportunity. The first Mini-TES unit was required to meet a two-year development schedule with proven, flight-tested instrumentation. Therefore, SBRS designed Mini-TES based on proven heritage from the successful MGS TES. THEMIS is based on "bolt-together" pushbroom optics and uncooled silicon microbolometer focal plane array (FPA) technology. Sometimes dubbed "Mars Landsat," THEMIS was launched in 2001 on Mars Odyssey, and provides guidance for future lander missions now in preparation for launch. Advanced materials and optical machining allow THEMIS low-scatter, reflective, wide field-of-view (WFOV) pushbroom optics for relatively long dwell-time compared to narrow FOV optics requiring cross-track scanning for equivalent spatial resolution. This allows uncooled silicon microbolometer FPAs, with less signal sensitivity than cryogenically cooled photo-diode FPAs, to meet the THEMIS sensitivity requirements. Instrument design, performance, integration, as well as details of the calibration are discussed. Full instrument and calibration details are available in the Journal of Geophysical Research Mini-TES and THEMIS papers by Christensen, et al.

  13. Geology and MER target site characteristics along the southern rim of Isidis Planitia, Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crumpler, L.S.; Tanaka, K.L.

    2003-01-01

    crustal materials, in the form of rocks within the debris fans, and the weathered condition of the rocky material are potential sources for mineralogical evidence of climatic conditions in earliest Martian geologic history. The absence of alteration within rocks would, on the other hand, support the hypothesis that fluvial runoff during the earliest history of Mars was geologically brief rather than long-term and that long-term saturated groundwater flow was not present. Determination of the presence or absence of alteration would have corresponding implications for hypotheses requiring the long-term presence of aqueous solutions (i.e., complex organic compounds and life). A proposed MER site along the margin addresses realistic field science objectives of the Mars Exploration Rover mission and the current goals of the Mars Exploration Program. In situ measurements may be important in deriving estimates of the longevity and intensity of past wetter climates. Copyright 2003 by the American Geophysical Union.

  14. Seasonal variation of Argon in the martian atmosphere as measured by Spirit and Opportunity MER rovers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Economou, Thanasis

    Although there were no meteorological devices on any of the 2 rovers of the MER mission, by using the excellent ability of the Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) to detect even a small amount of the Ar gas in a predominantly CO2 martian atmosphere, we were able to obtain detailed information on the variability of the atmospheric Ar as a function of seasonal changes. The technique is simple and straightforward. In order to increase the accuracy of the technique by eliminating any interference from target elements and minimizing the background from the backscattered Pu-L X-ray lines, dedicated APXS atmospheric Ar measurements were performed over a period of almost 4 martian years. In that mode the only visible peak in the x-ray spectra is the Ar Kα x-ray line at energy Eα=2.96 keV. Polar condensation of CO2 during winter periods, when the temperature falls below the freezing point of CO2, causes massive movement of air masses from the equatorial regions towards the poles. As the CO2 freezes, the remaining air there is enriched in argon (and nitrogen). The GRS experiment on the Odyssey orbiter around Mars has observed a six-fold in the Ar/CO2 mixing ratio in the southern polar region during the winter period. During the summer season, the opposite occurs: sublimating CO2 increases the atmospheric pressure and creates an atmospheric high that pushes the air mass with an enriched Ar fraction towards the equatorial regions where when arrives it is detected by the APXS on the Opportunity and Spirit landing sites. Our results indicate that the variation of the Ar in the martian atmosphere at both landing sites follows generally the variation of the atmospheric pressure, but it is not in phase with it: there is a phase shift of almost one martian season. The measurement of the Ar mixing ratio at the Spirit and Opportunity landing sites is thus a direct probe of the global circulation between the polar CO2 resource/sink and the equatorial regions. This information is

  15. Iron Mineralogy and Aqueous Alteration on Mars from the MER Moessbauer Spectrometers. Chapter 15

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, Richard V.; Klingelhoefer, Goestar

    2007-01-01

    .05), is relatively uncommon, and occurs as subsurface deposits in the Columbia Hills. Berry Class soil is also heavily altered (SO3 = 5 +/- 1 wt.% and Fe(3+)/Fe(sub T) = 0.60 +/- 0.13) and occurs at Meridiani Planum as lag deposits, at the crests of aeolian bedforms, and as isolated pockets on outcrop surfaces. Magnetite is identified as the strongly magnetic component in martian soil. Jarosite (in the Burns outcrop at Meridiani Planum) and goethite (in Clovis Class rocks at Gusev crater) are mineralogical markers for aqueous processes because they contain the hydroxide anion (OH(-)) as an essential part of their structure. Each yields approx.10 wt.% H2O upon dehydroxylation. The presence of Fe sulfates on opposite sides of Mars is evidence that aqueous processes under acid sulfate conditions are or were common. Except for Independence Class rocks in the Columbia Hills, the overall Fe mineralogical compositions and similar basaltic bulk chemical compositions (calculated with respect to S = Cl = 0) of the population of altered rocks analyzed by MER imply isochemical alteration of basaltic precursors at low water-to-rock ratios.

  16. NMR structure note: Structure of the Membrane Protein MerF, a Bacterial Mercury Transporter, Improved by the Inclusion of Chemical Shift Anisotropy Constraints

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Ye; Lu, George J.; Marassi, Francesca M.; Opella, Stanley J.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY MerF is a mercury transport membrane protein from the bacterial mercury detoxification system. By performing a solid-state INEPT experiment and measuring chemical shift anisotropy frequencies in aligned samples, we are able to improve on the accuracy and precision of the initial structure that we presented. MerF has four N-terminal and eleven C-terminal residues that are mobile and unstructured in phospholipid bilayers. The structure presented here has average pairwise RMSDs of 1.78 Å for heavy atoms and 0.92 Å for backbone atoms. PMID:25103921

  17. A Single Serine Residue Determines Selectivity to Monovalent Metal Ions in Metalloregulators of the MerR Family

    PubMed Central

    Ibáñez, María M.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT MerR metalloregulators alleviate toxicity caused by an excess of metal ions, such as copper, zinc, mercury, lead, cadmium, silver, or gold, by triggering the expression of specific efflux or detoxification systems upon metal detection. The sensor protein binds the inducer metal ion by using two conserved cysteine residues at the C-terminal metal-binding loop (MBL). Divalent metal ion sensors, such as MerR and ZntR, require a third cysteine residue, located at the beginning of the dimerization (α5) helix, for metal coordination, while monovalent metal ion sensors, such as CueR and GolS, have a serine residue at this position. This serine residue was proposed to provide hydrophobic and steric restrictions to privilege the binding of monovalent metal ions. Here we show that the presence of alanine at this position does not modify the activation pattern of monovalent metal sensors. In contrast, GolS or CueR mutant sensors with a substitution of cysteine for the serine residue respond to monovalent metal ions or Hg(II) with high sensitivities. Furthermore, in a mutant deleted of the Zn(II) exporter ZntA, they also trigger the expression of their target genes in response to either Zn(II), Cd(II), Pb(II), or Co(II). IMPORTANCE Specificity in a stressor's recognition is essential for mounting an appropriate response. MerR metalloregulators trigger the expression of specific resistance systems upon detection of heavy metal ions. Two groups of these metalloregulators can be distinguished, recognizing either +1 or +2 metal ions, depending on the presence of a conserved serine in the former or a cysteine in the latter. Here we demonstrate that the serine residue in monovalent metal ion sensors excludes divalent metal ion detection, as its replacement by cysteine renders a pan-metal ion sensor. Our results indicate that the spectrum of signals detected by these sensors is determined not only by the metal-binding ligand availability but also by the metal-binding cavity

  18. Toward Developing a Preventive MERS-CoV Vaccine—Report from a Workshop Organized by the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Health and the International Vaccine Institute, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, November 14–15, 2015

    PubMed Central

    Delvecchio, Christopher J.; Wiley, Ryan E.; Williams, Marni; Yoon, In-Kyu; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Boujelal, Mohamed; Moorthy, Vasee S.; Hersi, Ahmad Salah; Kim, Jerome H.

    2016-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) remains a serious international public health threat. With the goal of accelerating the development of countermeasures against MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV), funding agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and researchers across the world assembled in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on November 14–15, 2015, to discuss vaccine development challenges. The meeting was spearheaded by the Saudi Ministry of Health and co-organized by the International Vaccine Institute, South Korea. Accelerating the development of a preventive vaccine requires a better understanding of MERS epidemiology, transmission, and pathogenesis in humans and animals. A combination of rodent and nonhuman primate models should be considered in evaluating and developing preventive and therapeutic vaccine candidates. Dromedary camels should be considered for the development of veterinary vaccines. Several vaccine technology platforms targeting the MERS-CoV spike protein were discussed. Mechanisms to maximize investment, provide robust data, and affect public health are urgently needed. PMID:27439020

  19. Toward Developing a Preventive MERS-CoV Vaccine-Report from a Workshop Organized by the Saudi Arabia Ministry of Health and the International Vaccine Institute, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, November 14-15, 2015.

    PubMed

    Excler, Jean-Louis; Delvecchio, Christopher J; Wiley, Ryan E; Williams, Marni; Yoon, In-Kyu; Modjarrad, Kayvon; Boujelal, Mohamed; Moorthy, Vasee S; Hersi, Ahmad Salah; Kim, Jerome H

    2016-08-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) remains a serious international public health threat. With the goal of accelerating the development of countermeasures against MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV), funding agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and researchers across the world assembled in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on November 14-15, 2015, to discuss vaccine development challenges. The meeting was spearheaded by the Saudi Ministry of Health and co-organized by the International Vaccine Institute, South Korea. Accelerating the development of a preventive vaccine requires a better understanding of MERS epidemiology, transmission, and pathogenesis in humans and animals. A combination of rodent and nonhuman primate models should be considered in evaluating and developing preventive and therapeutic vaccine candidates. Dromedary camels should be considered for the development of veterinary vaccines. Several vaccine technology platforms targeting the MERS-CoV spike protein were discussed. Mechanisms to maximize investment, provide robust data, and affect public health are urgently needed. PMID:27439020

  20. Successful Mars remote sensors, MO THEMIS and MER Mini-TES

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silverman, Steven; Christensen, Phil

    2006-10-01

    spectral range 5 29μm at 10cm spectral resolution. Launched in June 2003, one Mini-TES instrument will fly to Mars aboard each of the two missions of NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Project (MER), named Spirit and Opportunity. The first Mini-TES unit was required to meet a two-year development schedule with proven, flight-tested instrumentation. Therefore, SBRS designed Mini-TES based on proven heritage from the successful MGS TES. THEMIS is based on “bolt-together” pushbroom optics and uncooled silicon microbolometer focal plane array (FPA) technology. Sometimes dubbed “Mars Landsat,” THEMIS was launched in 2001 on Mars Odyssey, and provides guidance for future lander missions now in preparation for launch. Advanced materials and optical machining allow THEMIS low-scatter, reflective, wide field-of-view (WFOV) pushbroom optics for relatively long dwell-time compared to narrow FOV optics requiring cross-track scanning for equivalent spatial resolution. This allows uncooled silicon microbolometer FPAs, with less signal sensitivity than cryogenically cooled photo-diode FPAs, to meet the THEMIS sensitivity requirements. Instrument design, performance, integration, as well as details of the calibration are discussed. Full instrument and calibration details are available in the Journal of Geophysical Research Mini-TES and THEMIS papers by Christensen et al.

  1. Association of Higher MERS-CoV Virus Load with Severe Disease and Death, Saudi Arabia, 2014

    PubMed Central

    Feikin, Daniel R.; Alraddadi, Basem; Qutub, Mohammed; Shabouni, Omaima; Curns, Aaron; Oboho, Ikwo K.; Tomczyk, Sara M.; Wolff, Bernard; Watson, John T.

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes a spectrum of illness. We evaluated whether cycle threshold (Ct) values (which are inversely related to virus load) were associated with clinical severity in patients from Saudi Arabia whose nasopharyngeal specimens tested positive for this virus by real-time reverse transcription PCR. Among 102 patients, median Ct of 31.0 for the upstream of the E gene target for 41 (40%) patients who died was significantly lower than the median of 33.0 for 61 survivors (p = 0.0087). In multivariable regression analyses, risk factors for death were age >60 years), underlying illness, and decreasing Ct for each 1-point decrease in Ct). Results were similar for a composite severe outcome (death and/or intensive care unit admission). More data are needed to determine whether modulation of virus load by therapeutic agents affects clinical outcomes. PMID:26488195

  2. Association of Higher MERS-CoV Virus Load with Severe Disease and Death, Saudi Arabia, 2014.

    PubMed

    Feikin, Daniel R; Alraddadi, Basem; Qutub, Mohammed; Shabouni, Omaima; Curns, Aaron; Oboho, Ikwo K; Tomczyk, Sara M; Wolff, Bernard; Watson, John T; Madani, Tariq A

    2015-11-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes a spectrum of illness. We evaluated whether cycle threshold (Ct) values (which are inversely related to virus load) were associated with clinical severity in patients from Saudi Arabia whose nasopharyngeal specimens tested positive for this virus by real-time reverse transcription PCR. Among 102 patients, median Ct of 31.0 for the upstream of the E gene target for 41 (40%) patients who died was significantly lower than the median of 33.0 for 61 survivors (p=0.0087). In multivariable regression analyses, risk factors for death were age>60 years), underlying illness, and decreasing Ct for each 1-point decrease in Ct). Results were similar for a composite severe outcome (death and/or intensive care unit admission). More data are needed to determine whether modulation of virus load by therapeutic agents affects clinical outcomes. PMID:26488195

  3. The Martian Soil as a Geochemical Sink for Hydrothermally Altered Crustal Rocks and Mobile Elements: Implications of Early MER Results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newsom, H. E.; Nelson, M. J.; Shearer, C. K.; Draper, D. S.

    2005-01-01

    Hydrothermal and aqueous alteration can explain some of the exciting results from the MER team s analyses of the martian soil, including the major elements, mobile elements, and the nickel enrichment. Published results from the five lander missions lead to the following conclusions: 1) The soil appears to be globally mixed and basaltic with only small local variations in chemistry. Relative to martian basaltic meteorites and Gusev rocks the soils are depleted in the fluid-mobile element calcium, but only slightly enriched to somewhat depleted in iron oxide. 2) The presence of olivine in the soils based on M ssbauer data argues that the soil is only partly weathered and is more akin to a lunar regolith than a terrestrial soil. 3) The presence of bromine along with sulfur and chlorine in the soils is consistent with addition of a mobile element component to the soil.

  4. Liver X receptor and STAT1 cooperate downstream of Gas6/Mer to induce anti-inflammatory arginase 2 expression in macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Si-Yoon; Lim, Eun-Jin; Yoon, Young-So; Ahn, Young-Ho; Park, Eun-Mi; Kim, Hee-Sun; Kang, Jihee Lee

    2016-01-01

    Mer signaling increases the transcriptional activity of liver X receptor (LXR) to promote the resolution of acute sterile inflammation. Here, we aimed to understand the pathway downstream of Mer signaling after growth arrest-specific protein 6 (Gas6) treatment that leads to LXR expression and transcriptional activity in mouse bone-marrow derived macrophages (BMDM). Gas6-induced increases in LXRα and LXRβ and expression of their target genes were inhibited in BMDM from STAT1−/− mice or by the STAT1-specific inhibitor fludarabine. Gas6-induced STAT1 phosphorylation, LXR activation, and LXR target gene expression were inhibited in BMDM from Mer−/− mice or by inhibition of PI3K or Akt. Gas6-induced Akt phosphorylation was inhibited in BMDM from STAT1−/− mice or in the presence of fludarabine. Gas6-induced LXR activity was enhanced through an interaction between LXRα and STAT1 on the DNA promoter of Arg2. Additionally, we found that Gas6 inhibited lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced nitrite production in a STAT1 and LXR pathway-dependent manner in BMDM. Additionally, Mer-neutralizing antibody reduced LXR and Arg2 expression in lung tissue and enhanced NO production in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid in LPS-induced acute lung injury. Our data suggest the possibility that the Gas6-Mer-PI3K/Akt-STAT1-LXR-Arg2 pathway plays an essential role for resolving inflammatory response in acute lung injury. PMID:27406916

  5. Structure and Three-Dimensional Crystal Packing Preferences for mer-Tris (8-quinolinolato) Indium (III) Vapor-Phase-Grown Crystals

    SciTech Connect

    Sapochak, Linda S.; Ranasinghe, Asanga; Kohlmann, Holger; Ferris, Kim F.; Burrows, Paul E.

    2004-02-10

    Evaluation of indium(III) tris(8-quinolinolato) (Inq3) chelate crystals grown slowly from the vapor phase under vacuum ({approx}10-6 Torr) was compared to the aluminum analogue, Alq3. In both cases, a previously unidentified close - interaction is identified, which likely impacts charge conduction. In the case of Inq3, we observe a mixture of both meridianal (mer) and facial (fac) crystals. The larger pseudohexagon mer-Inq3 crystals were analyzed by single-crystal X-ray diffraction and showed average In-N and In-O bond lengths significantly longer (0.22 and 0.26 ?, respectively) than Alq3 and bond angles about the In3+ ion more distorted from an ideal octahedral geometry. The crystalline packing of mer-Inq3 is found to closely resemble the -Alq3 phase, where both metal chelates are characterized by pairing of symmetry-related mer-optical isomers in three-dimensional - stacking interactions ({approx}3.5 ? or less). The smaller needlelike crystals were determined to be pure fac-Inq3 by powder X-ray diffraction studies. An equivalent is not observed when Alq3 is processed in an identical manner.

  6. Real-Time Sequence-Validated Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification Assays for Detection of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV)

    PubMed Central

    Bhadra, Sanchita; Jiang, Yu Sherry; Kumar, Mia R.; Johnson, Reed F.; Hensley, Lisa E.; Ellington, Andrew D.

    2015-01-01

    The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), an emerging human coronavirus, causes severe acute respiratory illness with a 35% mortality rate. In light of the recent surge in reported infections we have developed asymmetric five-primer reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) assays for detection of MERS-CoV. Isothermal amplification assays will facilitate the development of portable point-of-care diagnostics that are crucial for management of emerging infections. The RT-LAMP assays are designed to amplify MERS-CoV genomic loci located within the open reading frame (ORF)1a and ORF1b genes and upstream of the E gene. Additionally we applied one-step strand displacement probes (OSD) for real-time sequence-specific verification of LAMP amplicons. Asymmetric amplification effected by incorporating a single loop primer in each assay accelerated the time-to-result of the OSD-RT-LAMP assays. The resulting assays could detect 0.02 to 0.2 plaque forming units (PFU) (5 to 50 PFU/ml) of MERS-CoV in infected cell culture supernatants within 30 to 50 min and did not cross-react with common human respiratory pathogens. PMID:25856093

  7. Professional Organizations and the Professionalizing of Practice: The Role of MER, EdCom, and the NAEA Museum Education Division, 1969-2002

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kai-Kee, Elliott

    2012-01-01

    The establishment of the Museum Education Roundtable (MER) in 1969, the formation of the Committee on Education of the American Association of Museums (AAM) in 1973, and the creation of the Museum Education Division of the National Art Education Association (NAEA) in 1981 all represent milestones in the professionalization of museum education…

  8. Working on Mars: Understanding How Scientists, Engineers and Rovers Interacted Across Space and Time during the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wales, Roxana C.

    2005-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation summarizes the scheduling and planning difficulties inherent in operating the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) during the overlapping terrestrial day and Martian sol. The presentation gives special empahsis to communication between the teams controlling the rovers from Earth, and keeping track of time on the two planets.

  9. Human protein S inhibits the uptake of AcLDL and expression of SR-A through Mer receptor tyrosine kinase in human macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Dan; Wang, Xinwen; Li, Min; Lin, Peter H.; Yao, Qizhi

    2009-01-01

    Human protein S is an anticoagulation protein. However, it is unknown whether protein S could regulate the expression and function of macrophage scavenger receptor A (SR-A) in macrophages. Human THP-1 monocytes and peripheral blood monocytes were differentiated into macrophages and then treated with physiological concentrations of human protein S. We found that protein S significantly reduced acetylated low-density lipoprotein (AcLDL) uptake and binding by macrophages and decreased the intracellular cholesteryl ester content. Protein S suppressed the expression of the SR-A at both mRNA and protein levels. Protein S reduced the SR-A promoter activity primarily through inhibition in the binding of transcription factors to the AP-1 promoter element in macrophages. Furthermore, human protein S could bind and induce phosphorylation of Mer receptor tyrosine kinase (Mer RTK). Soluble Mer protein or tyrosine kinase inhibitor herbimycin A effectively blocked the effects of protein S on AcLDL uptake. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that the level of protein S was substantially increased in human atherosclerotic arteries. Thus, human protein S can inhibit the expression and activity of SR-A through Mer RTK in macrophages, suggesting that human protein S is a modulator for macrophage functions in uptaking of modified lipoproteins. PMID:18922854

  10. Quantifying spatiotemporal heterogeneity of MERS-CoV transmission in the Middle East region: A combined modelling approach.

    PubMed

    Poletto, Chiara; Colizza, Vittoria; Boëlle, Pierre-Yves

    2016-06-01

    MERS coronavirus cases notified in the Middle East region since the identification of the virus in 2012 have displayed variations in time and across geography. Through a combined modelling approach, we estimate the rates of generation of cases along the zoonotic and human-to-human transmission routes and assess their spatiotemporal heterogeneity. We consider all cases notified to WHO from March 2012 to mid-September 2014. We use a stochastic modelling of the time series of case incidence in the Middle East region to estimate time- and space-dependent zoonotic and human-to-human transmission parameters. The model also accounts for possible lack of identification of secondary transmissions among notified cases. This approach is combined with the analysis of imported cases out of the region to assess the rate of underreporting of cases. Out of a total of 32 possible models, based on different parameterisation and scenario considered, the best-fit model is characterised by a large heterogeneity in time and across space for both zoonotic and human-to-human transmission. The variation in time that occurred during Spring 2014 led to a 17-fold and 3-fold increase in the two transmissions, respectively, bringing the reproductive rate to values above 1 during that period for all regions under study. The model suggests that 75% of MERS-CoV cases are secondary cases (human-to-human transmission), which is substantially higher than the 34% of reported cases with an epidemiological link to another case. Overall, estimated reporting rate is 0.26. Our findings show a higher level of spatial heterogeneity in zoonotic transmission compared to human-to-human, highlighting the strong environmental component of the epidemic. Since sporadic introductions are predicted to be a small proportion of notified cases and are responsible for triggering secondary transmissions, a more comprehensive understanding of zoonotic source and path of transmission could be critical to limit the epidemic

  11. High-resolution topomapping of candidate MER landing sites with Mars Orbiter Camera narrow-angle images

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kirk, R.L.; Howington-Kraus, E.; Redding, B.; Galuszka, D.; Hare, T.M.; Archinal, B.A.; Soderblom, L.A.; Barrett, J.M.

    2003-01-01

    We analyzed narrow-angle Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC-NA) images to produce high-resolution digital elevation models (DEMs) in order to provide topographic and slope information needed to assess the safety of candidate landing sites for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) and to assess the accuracy of our results by a variety of tests. The mapping techniques developed also support geoscientific studies and can be used with all present and planned Mars-orbiting scanner cameras. Photogrammetric analysis of MOC stereopairs yields DEMs with 3-pixel (typically 10 m) horizontal resolution, vertical precision consistent with ???0.22 pixel matching errors (typically a few meters), and slope errors of 1-3??. These DEMs are controlled to the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) global data set and consistent with it at the limits of resolution. Photoclinometry yields DEMs with single-pixel (typically ???3 m) horizontal resolution and submeter vertical precision. Where the surface albedo is uniform, the dominant error is 10-20% relative uncertainty in the amplitude of topography and slopes after "calibrating" photoclinometry against a stereo DEM to account for the influence of atmospheric haze. We mapped portions of seven candidate MER sites and the Mars Pathfinder site. Safety of the final four sites (Elysium, Gusev, Isidis, and Meridiani) was assessed by mission engineers by simulating landings on our DEMs of "hazard units" mapped in the sites, with results weighted by the probability of landing on those units; summary slope statistics show that most hazard units are smooth, with only small areas of etched terrain in Gusev crater posing a slope hazard.

  12. First confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection in the United States, updated information on the epidemiology of MERS-CoV infection, and guidance for the public, clinicians, and public health authorities - May 2014.

    PubMed

    Bialek, Stephanie R; Allen, Donna; Alvarado-Ramy, Francisco; Arthur, Ray; Balajee, Arunmozhi; Bell, David; Best, Susan; Blackmore, Carina; Breakwell, Lucy; Cannons, Andrew; Brown, Clive; Cetron, Martin; Chea, Nora; Chommanard, Christina; Cohen, Nicole; Conover, Craig; Crespo, Antonio; Creviston, Jeanean; Curns, Aaron T; Dahl, Rebecca; Dearth, Stephanie; DeMaria, Alfred; Echols, Fred; Erdman, Dean D; Feikin, Daniel; Frias, Mabel; Gerber, Susan I; Gulati, Reena; Hale, Christa; Haynes, Lia M; Heberlein-Larson, Lea; Holton, Kelly; Ijaz, Kashef; Kapoor, Minal; Kohl, Katrin; Kuhar, David T; Kumar, Alan M; Kundich, Marianne; Lippold, Susan; Liu, Lixia; Lovchik, Judith C; Madoff, Larry; Martell, Sandra; Matthews, Sarah; Moore, Jessica; Murray, Linda R; Onofrey, Shauna; Pallansch, Mark A; Pesik, Nicki; Pham, Huong; Pillai, Satish; Pontones, Pam; Pringle, Kimberly; Pritchard, Scott; Rasmussen, Sonja; Richards, Shawn; Sandoval, Michelle; Schneider, Eileen; Schuchat, Anne; Sheedy, Kristine; Sherin, Kevin; Swerdlow, David L; Tappero, Jordan W; Vernon, Michael O; Watkins, Sharon; Watson, John

    2014-05-16

    Since mid-March 2014, the frequency with which cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection have been reported has increased, with the majority of recent cases reported from Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates (UAE). In addition, the frequency with which travel-associated MERS cases have been reported and the number of countries that have reported them to the World Health Organization (WHO) have also increased. The first case of MERS in the United States, identified in a traveler recently returned from Saudi Arabia, was reported to CDC by the Indiana State Department of Health on May 1, 2014, and confirmed by CDC on May 2. A second imported case of MERS in the United States, identified in a traveler from Saudi Arabia having no connection with the first case, was reported to CDC by the Florida Department of Health on May 11, 2014. The purpose of this report is to alert clinicians, health officials, and others to increase awareness of the need to consider MERS-CoV infection in persons who have recently traveled from countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula. This report summarizes recent epidemiologic information, provides preliminary descriptions of the cases reported from Indiana and Florida, and updates CDC guidance about patient evaluation, home care and isolation, specimen collection, and travel as of May 13, 2014. PMID:24827411

  13. Computer aided prediction and identification of potential epitopes in the receptor binding domain (RBD) of spike (S) glycoprotein of MERS-CoV

    PubMed Central

    ali, Mohammad Tuhin; Morshed, Mohammed Monzur; Gazi, Md. Amran; Musa, Md. Abu; Kibria, Md Golam; Uddin, Md Jashim; Khan, Md. Anik Ashfaq; Hasan, Shihab

    2014-01-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) belongs to the coronaviridae family. In spite of several outbreaks in the very recent years, no vaccine against this deadly virus is developed yet. In this study, the receptor binding domain (RBD) of Spike (S) glycoprotein of MERS-CoV was analyzed through Computational Immunology approach to identify the antigenic determinants (epitopes). In order to do so, the sequences of S glycoprotein that belong to different geographical regions were aligned to observe the conservancy of MERS-CoV RBD. The immune parameters of this region were determined using different in silico tools and Immune Epitope Database (IEDB). Molecular docking study was also employed to check the affinity of the potential epitope towards the binding cleft of the specific HLA allele. The N-terminus RBD (S367-S606) of S glycoprotein was found to be conserved among all the available strains of MERS-CoV. Based on the lower IC50 value, a total of eight potential T-cell epitopes and 19 major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class-I alleles were identified for this conserved region. A 9-mer epitope CYSSLILDY displayed interactions with the maximum number of MHC class-I molecules and projected the highest peak in the B-cell antigenicity plot which concludes that it could be a better choice for designing an epitope based peptide vaccine against MERSCoV considering that it must undergo further in vitro and in vivo experiments. Moreover, in molecular docking study, this epitope was found to have a significant binding affinity of -8.5 kcal/mol towards the binding cleft of the HLA-C*12:03 molecule. PMID:25258490

  14. Combination chemotherapy-radiotherapy with and without the methanol-extraction residue of bacillus Calmette-Guerin (MER) in small cell carcinoma of the lung: a prospective randomized trial of the Piedmont Oncology Association

    SciTech Connect

    Jackson, D.V.; Paschal, B.R.; Ferree, C.

    1982-07-01

    The effect of addition of the nonspecific immunostimulant, MER, to combined treatment with chemotherapy and radiotherapy in small cell carcinoma of the lung was evaluated in a prospective randomized trial involving 102 evaluable patients. Chemotherapy consisted of cyclophosphamide, Adriamycin, vincristine, methotrexate, and CCNU; and radiotherapy was administered to the primary lesion, mediastinum, supraclavicular areas, and whole brain. Of 47 patients administered MER 400 mcg intradermally every six weeks, 12 (26%) attained complete remission with a median survival of 22.9 months. Complete remission was observed in 17 (31%) of 55 patients who received no MER with a median survival of 20.0 months (p > 0.05). Survival greater than or equal to 2 years has been observed in five patients who received MER and two patients who did not receive MER. The response rate and duration, survival, and toxicity of the two treatment arms were similar with the exception of cutaneous and occasional systemic reaction to MER. MER as used in this study has not influenced the overall results of a combined modality treatment program for patients with small cell carcinoma of the lung.

  15. The Same Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) yet Different Outbreak Patterns and Public Health Impacts on the Far East Expert Opinion from the Rapid Response Team of the Republic of Korea

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    A Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak, the largest outbreak outside the Middle East in 2012, occurred in the Republic of Korea and resulted in a large number of cases, with 186 infected people, including 38 deaths. A Rapid Response Team (RRT) was appointed after a request from the Korean government on June 8, 2015 calling for specialists to manage and control the MERS-CoV outbreak. This report presents the opinion of the RRT who worked to manage this healthcare-associated MERS-CoV outbreak in Korea. PMID:26788408

  16. Expansion of quiescent lung adenocarcinoma CD8+ T cells by MUC1-8-mer peptide-T2 cell-β2 microglobulin complexes

    PubMed Central

    ATZIN-MÉNDEZ, J.A.; LÓPEZ-GONZÁLEZ, J.S.; BÁEZ, R.; ARENAS-DEL ANGEL, M.C.; MONTAÑO, L.F.; SILVA-ADAYA, D.; LASCURAIN, R.; GOROCICA, P.

    2016-01-01

    Adoptive immunotherapy requires the isolation of CD8+ T cells specific for tumor-associated antigens, their expansion in vitro and their transfusion to the patient to mediate a therapeutic effect. MUC1 is an important adenocarcinoma antigen immunogenic for T cells. The MUC1-derived SAPDTRPA (MUC1-8-mer) peptide is a potent epitope recognized by CD8+ T cells in murine models. Likewise, the T2 cell line has been used as an antigen-presenting cell to activate CD8+ T cells, but so far MUC1 has not been assessed in this context. We evaluated whether the MUC1-8-mer peptide can be presented by T2 cells to expand CD25+CD8+ T cells isolated from HLA-A2+ lung adenocarcinoma patients with stage III or IV tumors. The results showed that MUC1-8-mer peptide-loaded T2 cells activated CD8+ T cells from cancer HLA-A2+ patients when anti-CD2, anti-CD28 antibodies and IL-2 were added. The percentage of CD25+CD8+ T cells was 3-fold higher than those in the non-stimulated cells (P=0.018). HLA-A2+ patient cells showed a significant difference (2.3-fold higher) in activation status than HLA-A2+ healthy control cells (P=0.04). Moreover, 77.6% of MUC1-8-mer peptide-specific CD8+ T cells proliferated following a second stimulation with MUC1-8-mer peptide-loaded T2 cells after 10 days of cell culture. There were significant differences in the percentage of basal CD25+CD8+ T cells in relation to the cancer stage; this difference disappeared after MUC1-8-mer peptide stimulation. In conclusion, expansion of CD25+CD8+ T cells by MUC1-8 peptide-loaded T2 cells plus costimulatory signals via CD2, CD28 and IL-2 can be useful in adoptive immunotherapy. PMID:26498650

  17. Detection of Genes Involved in Biodegradation and Biotransformation in Microbial Communities by Using 50-Mer Oligonucleotide Microarrays

    PubMed Central

    Rhee, Sung-Keun; Liu, Xueduan; Wu, Liyou; Chong, Song C.; Wan, Xiufeng; Zhou, Jizhong

    2004-01-01

    To effectively monitor biodegrading populations, a comprehensive 50-mer-based oligonucleotide microarray was developed based on most of the 2,402 known genes and pathways involved in biodegradation and metal resistance. This array contained 1,662 unique and group-specific probes with <85% similarity to their nontarget sequences. Based on artificial probes, our results showed that under hybridization conditions of 50°C and 50% formamide, the 50-mer microarray hybridization can differentiate sequences having <88% similarity. Specificity tests with representative pure cultures indicated that the designed probes on the arrays appeared to be specific to their corresponding target genes. The detection limit was ∼5 to 10 ng of genomic DNA in the absence of background DNA and 50 to 100 ng of pure-culture genomic DNA in the presence of background DNA or 1.3 × 107 cells in the presence of background RNA. Strong linear relationships between the signal intensity and the target DNA and RNA were observed (r2 = 0.95 to 0.99). Application of this type of microarray to analyze naphthalene-amended enrichment and soil microcosms demonstrated that microflora changed differently depending on the incubation conditions. While the naphthalene-degrading genes from Rhodococcus-type microorganisms were dominant in naphthalene-degrading enrichments, the genes involved in naphthalene (and polyaromatic hydrocarbon and nitrotoluene) degradation from gram-negative microorganisms, such as Ralstonia, Comamonas, and Burkholderia, were most abundant in the soil microcosms. In contrast to general conceptions, naphthalene-degrading genes from Pseudomonas were not detected, although Pseudomonas is widely known as a model microorganism for studying naphthalene degradation. The real-time PCR analysis with four representative genes showed that the microarray-based quantification was very consistent with real-time PCR (r2 = 0.74). In addition, application of the arrays to both polyaromatic

  18. Discovery of Carbonate-Rich Outcrops in the Gusev Crater Columbia Hills by the MER Rover Spirit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, Richard V.; Ruff, Steven W.; Gellert, Ralf; Ming, Douglas W.; Arvidson, Raymond E.; Clark, Benton C.; Golden, Dadi C.; Siebach, Kirsten L.; Klingelhoefer, Goestar; Schroeder, Christian; Fleischer, Iris; Yen, Albert S.; Squyres, Steven W.

    2010-01-01

    The chemical composition, global abundance, distribution, and formation pathways of carbonates are central to understanding aqueous processes, climate, and habitability of early Mars. The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit analyzed a series of olivine-rich outcrops while descending from the summit region of Husband Hill into the Inner Basin of the Columbia Hills of Gusev Crater to the eastern edge of the El Dorado ripple field in late 2005. Reanalysis of Spirit s mineralogical data from the Moessbauer Spectrometer (MB) and the Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (Mini-TES) and chemical data from the Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS) in 2010, coupled with new laboratory data for carbonate-bearing samples, lead to identification of carbonate in one of the outcrops (Comanche) [Morris, R.V., et al., Science, 329, 421-424]. The carbonate is rich in magnesium and iron (Mc62Sd25Cc11Rh2, assuming all Ca and Mn is associated with the carbonate) and is a major component of the Comanche outcrops (16 to 34 wt.%). The mineralogical, chemical, and abundance data are constrained in multiple, mutually consistent ways by the MER analyses. For example, a low-Ca carbonate is required by the MB and APXS data and is consistent with Mini-TES data. Three spectral features attributable to fundamental infrared vibrational modes of low-Ca carbonate are present in the Mini-TES spectra of Comanche outcrops. The average composition of Comanche carbonate approximates the average composition of the carbonate globules in Martian meteorite ALH 84001. Analogy with ALH 84001, terrestrial, and synthetic carbonate globules suggests that Comanche carbonate precipitated from aqueous solutions under hydrothermal conditions at near neutral pH in association with volcanic activity during the Noachian era. Comanche outcrop morphology suggests they are remnants of a larger carbonate-bearing formation that evolved in ultramafic rock and then preferentially eroded by a combination of aeolian

  19. Pre- and postexposure efficacy of fully human antibodies against Spike protein in a novel humanized mouse model of MERS-CoV infection.

    PubMed

    Pascal, Kristen E; Coleman, Christopher M; Mujica, Alejandro O; Kamat, Vishal; Badithe, Ashok; Fairhurst, Jeanette; Hunt, Charleen; Strein, John; Berrebi, Alexander; Sisk, Jeanne M; Matthews, Krystal L; Babb, Robert; Chen, Gang; Lai, Ka-Man V; Huang, Tammy T; Olson, William; Yancopoulos, George D; Stahl, Neil; Frieman, Matthew B; Kyratsous, Christos A

    2015-07-14

    Traditional approaches to antimicrobial drug development are poorly suited to combatting the emergence of novel pathogens. Additionally, the lack of small animal models for these infections hinders the in vivo testing of potential therapeutics. Here we demonstrate the use of the VelocImmune technology (a mouse that expresses human antibody-variable heavy chains and κ light chains) alongside the VelociGene technology (which allows for rapid engineering of the mouse genome) to quickly develop and evaluate antibodies against an emerging viral disease. Specifically, we show the rapid generation of fully human neutralizing antibodies against the recently emerged Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and development of a humanized mouse model for MERS-CoV infection, which was used to demonstrate the therapeutic efficacy of the isolated antibodies. The VelocImmune and VelociGene technologies are powerful platforms that can be used to rapidly respond to emerging epidemics. PMID:26124093

  20. Pre- and postexposure efficacy of fully human antibodies against Spike protein in a novel humanized mouse model of MERS-CoV infection

    PubMed Central

    Pascal, Kristen E.; Coleman, Christopher M.; Mujica, Alejandro O.; Kamat, Vishal; Badithe, Ashok; Fairhurst, Jeanette; Hunt, Charleen; Strein, John; Berrebi, Alexander; Sisk, Jeanne M.; Matthews, Krystal L.; Babb, Robert; Chen, Gang; Lai, Ka-Man V.; Huang, Tammy T.; Olson, William; Yancopoulos, George D.; Stahl, Neil; Frieman, Matthew B.; Kyratsous, Christos A.

    2015-01-01

    Traditional approaches to antimicrobial drug development are poorly suited to combatting the emergence of novel pathogens. Additionally, the lack of small animal models for these infections hinders the in vivo testing of potential therapeutics. Here we demonstrate the use of the VelocImmune technology (a mouse that expresses human antibody-variable heavy chains and κ light chains) alongside the VelociGene technology (which allows for rapid engineering of the mouse genome) to quickly develop and evaluate antibodies against an emerging viral disease. Specifically, we show the rapid generation of fully human neutralizing antibodies against the recently emerged Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and development of a humanized mouse model for MERS-CoV infection, which was used to demonstrate the therapeutic efficacy of the isolated antibodies. The VelocImmune and VelociGene technologies are powerful platforms that can be used to rapidly respond to emerging epidemics. PMID:26124093

  1. CDC's Early Response to a Novel Viral Disease, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), September 2012–May 2014

    PubMed Central

    Dunville, Richard L.; Gerber, Susan I.; Erdman, Dean D.; Pesik, Nicki; Kuhar, David; Mason, Karen A.; Haynes, Lia; Rotz, Lisa; St. Pierre, Jeanette; Poser, Sarah; Bunga, Sudhir; Pallansch, Mark A.; Swerdlow, David L.

    2015-01-01

    The first ever case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was reported in September 2012. This report describes the approaches taken by CDC, in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other partners, to respond to this novel virus, and outlines the agency responses prior to the first case appearing in the United States in May 2014. During this time, CDC's response integrated multiple disciplines and was divided into three distinct phases: before, during, and after the initial activation of its Emergency Operations Center. CDC's response to MERS-CoV required a large effort, deploying at least 353 staff members who worked in the areas of surveillance, laboratory capacity, infection control guidance, and travelers' health. This response built on CDC's experience with previous outbreaks of other pathogens and provided useful lessons for future emerging threats. PMID:26345122

  2. Apoptotic cell clearance of Leishmania major-infected neutrophils by dendritic cells inhibits CD8+ T-cell priming in vitro by Mer tyrosine kinase-dependent signaling

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro-Gomes, F L; Romano, A; Lee, S; Roffê, E; Peters, N C; Debrabant, A; Sacks, D

    2015-01-01

    Neutrophils are the predominant recruited and infected cells during the early stages of Leishmania major infection in the skin, and depletion of neutrophils promotes immunity to infection transmitted by sand fly bite. In order to better understand how the acute neutrophilic response suppresses immunity, we assessed the consequences of the interaction between neutrophils recovered from the skin-inoculation site and bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (DCs) in vitro. The capture of infected, apoptotic neutrophils by the DCs completely inhibited their cross-presentation function that was dependent on engagement of the receptor tyrosine kinase Mer on the DCs. The capture of uninfected neutrophils, or neutrophils infected with Toxoplasma gondii, had only slight immunomodulatory effects. These studies define the clearance of infected, apoptotic neutrophils by DCs and Mer receptor signaling as central to the early immune evasion strategies of L. major, with relevance to other vector-borne pathogens delivered by bite to the skin. PMID:26658192

  3. CDC's Early Response to a Novel Viral Disease, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), September 2012-May 2014.

    PubMed

    Williams, Holly Ann; Dunville, Richard L; Gerber, Susan I; Erdman, Dean D; Pesik, Nicki; Kuhar, David; Mason, Karen A; Haynes, Lia; Rotz, Lisa; St Pierre, Jeanette; Poser, Sarah; Bunga, Sudhir; Pallansch, Mark A; Swerdlow, David L

    2015-01-01

    The first ever case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was reported in September 2012. This report describes the approaches taken by CDC, in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other partners, to respond to this novel virus, and outlines the agency responses prior to the first case appearing in the United States in May 2014. During this time, CDC's response integrated multiple disciplines and was divided into three distinct phases: before, during, and after the initial activation of its Emergency Operations Center. CDC's response to MERS-CoV required a large effort, deploying at least 353 staff members who worked in the areas of surveillance, laboratory capacity, infection control guidance, and travelers' health. This response built on CDC's experience with previous outbreaks of other pathogens and provided useful lessons for future emerging threats. PMID:26345122

  4. Structural characterization of the N-terminal part of the MERS-CoV nucleocapsid by X-ray diffraction and small-angle X-ray scattering.

    PubMed

    Papageorgiou, Nicolas; Lichière, Julie; Baklouti, Amal; Ferron, François; Sévajol, Marion; Canard, Bruno; Coutard, Bruno

    2016-02-01

    The N protein of coronaviruses is a multifunctional protein that is organized into several domains. The N-terminal part is composed of an intrinsically disordered region (IDR) followed by a structured domain called the N-terminal domain (NTD). In this study, the structure determination of the N-terminal region of the MERS-CoV N protein via X-ray diffraction measurements is reported at a resolution of 2.4 Å. Since the first 30 amino acids were not resolved by X-ray diffraction, the structural study was completed by a SAXS experiment to propose a structural model including the IDR. This model presents the N-terminal region of the MERS-CoV as a monomer that displays structural features in common with other coronavirus NTDs. PMID:26894667

  5. MerMade: An Oligodeoxyribonucleotide Synthesizer for High Throughput Oligonucleotide Production in Dual 96-Well Plates

    PubMed Central

    Rayner, Simon; Brignac, Stafford; Bumeister, Ron; Belosludtsev, Yuri; Ward, Travis; Grant, O’dell; O’Brien, Kevin; Evans, Glen A.; Garner, Harold R.

    1998-01-01

    We have designed and constructed a machine that synthesizes two standard 96-well plates of oligonucleotides in a single run using standard phosphoramidite chemistry. The machine is capable of making a combination of standard, degenerate, or modified oligos in a single plate. The run time is typically 17 hr for two plates of 20-mers and a reaction scale of 40 nm. The reaction vessel is a standard polypropylene 96-well plate with a hole drilled in the bottom of each well. The two plates are placed in separate vacuum chucks and mounted on an xy table. Each well in turn is positioned under the appropriate reagent injection line and the reagent is injected by switching a dedicated valve. All aspects of machine operation are controlled by a Macintosh computer, which also guides the user through the startup and shutdown procedures, provides a continuous update on the status of the run, and facilitates a number of service procedures that need to be carried out periodically. Over 25,000 oligos have been synthesized for use in dye terminator sequencing reactions, polymerase chain reactions (PCRs), hybridization, and RT–PCR. Oligos up to 100 bases in length have been made with a coupling efficiency in excess of 99%. These machines, working in conjunction with our oligo prediction code are particularly well suited to application in automated high throughput genomic sequencing. PMID:9685322

  6. A First Look at the Mineralogy and Geochemistry of the MER-B Landing Site in Meridiani Planum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morris, Richard V.; Squyres, S.; Arvidson, R. E.; Bell, J. F., III; Christensen, P. C.; Gorevan, S.; Herkenhoff, K.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Rieder, R.; Farrand, W.

    2004-01-01

    The second MER rover (Opportunity) landed on Meridiani Planum on January 24, 2004 inside a shallow crater. The science rational for the selection of the landing site centered on detection of the mineral hematite from martian orbit by the Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer (MGS-TES) [1,2]. Other smaller occurrences of hematite are in Aram Chaos and several isolated spots in Valles Marineris. Proposed formation pathways for martian hematite include both aqueous (e.g., low temperature precipitation of Fe oxides/oxyhydroxides in a lacustrine environment, laterite-style weathering, and precipitation from fluids having a hydrothermal origin) and dry (e.g., oxidation of magnetite rich ash) processes [e.g., 1,2,3]. The crystallographic c-face of martian hematite must be exaggerated to account for the thermal emissions spectra and it must be gray in color so as to account for the absence of the characteristic spectral signature of red hematite at visible wavelengths

  7. Estimation of the Whitefly Bemisia tabaci Genome Size Based on k-mer and Flow Cytometric Analyses.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wenbo; Hasegawa, Daniel K; Arumuganathan, Kathiravetpillai; Simmons, Alvin M; Wintermantel, William M; Fei, Zhangjun; Ling, Kai-Shu

    2015-01-01

    Whiteflies of the Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) cryptic species complex are among the most important agricultural insect pests in the world. These phloem-feeding insects can colonize over 1000 species of plants worldwide and inflict severe economic losses to crops, mainly through the transmission of pathogenic viruses. Surprisingly, there is very little genomic information about whiteflies. As a starting point to genome sequencing, we report a new estimation of the genome size of the B. tabaci B biotype or Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) population. Using an isogenic whitefly colony with over 6500 haploid male individuals for genomic DNA, three paired-end genomic libraries with insert sizes of ~300 bp, 500 bp and 1 Kb were constructed and sequenced on an Illumina HiSeq 2500 system. A total of ~50 billion base pairs of sequences were obtained from each library. K-mer analysis using these sequences revealed that the genome size of the whitefly was ~682.3 Mb. In addition, the flow cytometric analysis estimated the haploid genome size of the whitefly to be ~690 Mb. Considering the congruency between both estimation methods, we predict the haploid genome size of B. tabaci MEAM1 to be ~680-690 Mb. Our data provide a baseline for ongoing efforts to assemble and annotate the B. tabaci genome. PMID:26463411

  8. Complete Taiwanese Macaque (Macaca cyclopis) Mitochondrial Genome: Reference-Assisted de novo Assembly with Multiple k-mer Strategy

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yu-Feng; Midha, Mohit; Chen, Tzu-Han; Wang, Yu-Tai; Smith, David Glenn; Pei, Kurtis Jai-Chyi; Chiu, Kuo Ping

    2015-01-01

    The Taiwanese (Formosan) macaque (Macaca cyclopis) is the only nonhuman primate endemic to Taiwan. This primate species is valuable for evolutionary studies and as subjects in medical research. However, only partial fragments of the mitochondrial genome (mitogenome) of this primate species have been sequenced, not mentioning its nuclear genome. We employed next-generation sequencing to generate 2 x 90 bp paired-end reads, followed by reference-assisted de novo assembly with multiple k-mer strategy to characterize the M. cyclopis mitogenome. We compared the assembled mitogenome with that of other macaque species for phylogenetic analysis. Our results show that, the M. cyclopis mitogenome consists of 16,563 nucleotides encoding for 13 protein-coding genes, 2 ribosomal RNAs and 22 transfer RNAs. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that M. cyclopis is most closely related to M. mulatta lasiota (Chinese rhesus macaque), supporting the notion of Asia-continental origin of M. cyclopis proposed in previous studies based on partial mitochondrial sequences. Our work presents a novel approach for assembling a mitogenome that utilizes the capabilities of de novo genome assembly with assistance of a reference genome. The availability of the complete Taiwanese macaque mitogenome will facilitate the study of primate evolution and the characterization of genetic variations for the potential usage of this species as a non-human primate model for medical research. PMID:26125617

  9. Effect of Inorganic and Organic Ligands on the Bioavailability of Methylmercury as Determined by Using a mer-lux Bioreporter

    PubMed Central

    Ndu, Udonna; Zhang, Huan; Lin, Senjie; Visscher, Pieter T.

    2012-01-01

    A mer-lux bioreporter was constructed to assess the bioavailability of methylmercury [CH3Hg(II)] in Escherichia coli. The bioreporter was shown to be sensitive, with a detection limit of 2.5 nM CH3Hg(II), and was used to investigate the effects of chlorides, humic acids, and thiols on the bioavailability of CH3Hg(II) in E. coli. It was found that increasing the concentration of chlorides resulted in an increase in CH3Hg(II) bioavailability, suggesting that there was passive diffusion of the neutral complex (CH3HgCl0). Humic acids were found to reduce the bioavailability of CH3Hg(II) in varying degrees. Complexation with cysteine resulted in increased bioavailability of CH3Hg(II), while assays with equivalent concentrations of methionine and leucine had little or no effect on bioavailability. The mechanism of uptake of the mercurial-cysteine complexes is likely not passive diffusion but could result from the activities of a cysteine transport system. The bioavailability of CH3Hg(II) decreased with increasing glutathione concentrations. PMID:22865079

  10. Stability and structure of oligomers of the Alzheimer peptide Abeta16-22: from the dimer to the 32-mer.

    PubMed

    Röhrig, Ute F; Laio, Alessandro; Tantalo, Nazario; Parrinello, Michele; Petronzio, Roberto

    2006-11-01

    Several neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's diseases are associated with amyloid fibrils formed by different polypeptides. We probe the structure and stability of oligomers of different sizes of the fragment Abeta(16-22) of the Alzheimer beta-amyloid peptide using atomic-detail molecular dynamics simulations with explicit solvent. We find that only large oligomers form a stable beta-sheet aggregate, the minimum nucleus size being of the order of 8-16 peptides. This effect is attributed to better hydrophobic contacts and a better shielding of backbone-backbone hydrogen bonds from the solvent in bigger assemblies. Moreover, the observed stability of beta-sheet aggregates with a different number of layers can be explained on the basis of their solvent-accessible surface area. Depending on the stacking interface between the sheets, we observe straight or twisted structures, which could be linked to the experimentally observed polymorphism of amyloid fibrils. To compare our 32-mer structure to experimental data, we calculate its x-ray diffraction pattern. Good agreement is found between experimentally and theoretically determined reflections, suggesting that our model indeed closely resembles the structures found in vitro. PMID:16920832

  11. Stability and Structure of Oligomers of the Alzheimer Peptide Aβ16–22: From the Dimer to the 32-Mer

    PubMed Central

    Röhrig, Ute F.; Laio, Alessandro; Tantalo, Nazario; Parrinello, Michele; Petronzio, Roberto

    2006-01-01

    Several neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's diseases are associated with amyloid fibrils formed by different polypeptides. We probe the structure and stability of oligomers of different sizes of the fragment Aβ16–22 of the Alzheimer β-amyloid peptide using atomic-detail molecular dynamics simulations with explicit solvent. We find that only large oligomers form a stable β-sheet aggregate, the minimum nucleus size being of the order of 8–16 peptides. This effect is attributed to better hydrophobic contacts and a better shielding of backbone-backbone hydrogen bonds from the solvent in bigger assemblies. Moreover, the observed stability of β-sheet aggregates with a different number of layers can be explained on the basis of their solvent-accessible surface area. Depending on the stacking interface between the sheets, we observe straight or twisted structures, which could be linked to the experimentally observed polymorphism of amyloid fibrils. To compare our 32-mer structure to experimental data, we calculate its x-ray diffraction pattern. Good agreement is found between experimentally and theoretically determined reflections, suggesting that our model indeed closely resembles the structures found in vitro. PMID:16920832

  12. Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of a 13-mer LNA-inhibitor-miR-221 in Mice and Non-human Primates.

    PubMed

    Gallo Cantafio, Maria Eugenia; Nielsen, Boye Schnack; Mignogna, Chiara; Arbitrio, Mariamena; Botta, Cirino; Frandsen, Niels M; Rolfo, Christian; Tagliaferri, Pierosandro; Tassone, Pierfrancesco; Di Martino, Maria Teresa

    2016-01-01

    Locked nucleic acid (LNA) oligonucleotides have been successfully used to efficiently inhibit endogenous small noncoding RNAs in vitro and in vivo. We previously demonstrated that the direct miR-221 inhibition by the novel 13-mer LNA-i-miR-221 induces significant antimyeloma activity and upregulates canonical miR-221 targets in vitro and in vivo. To evaluate the LNA-i-miR-221 pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, novel assays for oligonucleotides quantification in NOD.SCID mice and Cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) plasma, urine and tissues were developed. To this aim, a liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry method, after solid-phase extraction, was used for the detection of LNA-i-miR-221 in plasma and urine, while a specific in situ hybridization assay for tissue uptake analysis was designed. Our analysis revealed short half-life, optimal tissue biovailability and minimal urine excretion of LNA-i-miR-221 in mice and monkeys. Up to 3 weeks, LNA-i-miR-221 was still detectable in mice vital organs and in xenografted tumors, together with p27 target upregulation. Importantly, no toxicity in the pilot monkey study was observed. Overall, our findings indicate the suitability of LNA-i-miR-221 for clinical use and we provide here pilot data for safety analysis and further development of LNA-miRNA-based therapeutics for human cancer. PMID:27327137

  13. Estimation of the Whitefly Bemisia tabaci Genome Size Based on k-mer and Flow Cytometric Analyses

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Wenbo; Hasegawa, Daniel K.; Arumuganathan, Kathiravetpillai; Simmons, Alvin M.; Wintermantel, William M.; Fei, Zhangjun; Ling, Kai-Shu

    2015-01-01

    Whiteflies of the Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) cryptic species complex are among the most important agricultural insect pests in the world. These phloem-feeding insects can colonize over 1000 species of plants worldwide and inflict severe economic losses to crops, mainly through the transmission of pathogenic viruses. Surprisingly, there is very little genomic information about whiteflies. As a starting point to genome sequencing, we report a new estimation of the genome size of the B. tabaci B biotype or Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) population. Using an isogenic whitefly colony with over 6500 haploid male individuals for genomic DNA, three paired-end genomic libraries with insert sizes of ~300 bp, 500 bp and 1 Kb were constructed and sequenced on an Illumina HiSeq 2500 system. A total of ~50 billion base pairs of sequences were obtained from each library. K-mer analysis using these sequences revealed that the genome size of the whitefly was ~682.3 Mb. In addition, the flow cytometric analysis estimated the haploid genome size of the whitefly to be ~690 Mb. Considering the congruency between both estimation methods, we predict the haploid genome size of B. tabaci MEAM1 to be ~680–690 Mb. Our data provide a baseline for ongoing efforts to assemble and annotate the B. tabaci genome. PMID:26463411

  14. Organization of the biosynthetic gene cluster for the polyketide antitumor macrolide, pladienolide, in Streptomyces platensis Mer-11107.

    PubMed

    Machida, Kazuhiro; Arisawa, Akira; Takeda, Susumu; Tsuchida, Toshio; Aritoku, Yasuhide; Yoshida, Masashi; Ikeda, Haruo

    2008-11-01

    Pladienolides are novel 12-membered macrolides produced by Streptomyces platensis Mer-11107. They show strong antitumor activity and are a potential lead in the search for novel antitumor agents. We sequenced the 65-kb region covering the biosynthetic gene cluster, and found four polyketide synthase genes (pldAI-pldAIV) composed of 11 modules, three genes involved in post-modifications (pldB-D), and a luxR-family regulatory gene (pldR). The thioesterase domain of pldAIV was more dissimilar to that of polyketide synthase systems synthesizing 12/14-membered macrolide polyketides than to that of systems synthesizing other cyclic polyketides. The pldB gene was identified as a 6-hydroxylase belonging to a cytochrome P450 of the CYP107 family. This was clarified by a disruption experiment on pldB, in which the disruptant produced 6-dehydroxy pladienolide B. Two genes located downstream of pldB, designated pldC and pldD, are thought to be a probable genes for 7-O-acetylase and 18, 19-epoxydase respectively. PMID:18997414

  15. Coordinated Observations of Aeolian Features from the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) and the Mars Express High Resolution Stereo Camera and Other Orbiters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.; Thompson, S. D.; Whelley, P. L.; Squyres, S.; Neukum, G.; Arvidson, R.; Malin, M.; Kuzmin, R.; Christensen, P.; Rafkin, S.

    2004-01-01

    Surface features associated with aeolian (wind) processes at the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) landing sites for Spirit (Gusev crater) and Opportunity (Sinus Meridiani) were observed from the surface and from orbit through coordinated observations by the rovers and the Mars Express orbiter High Resolution Stereo Camera and compared with features seen in other orbiter data and with wind vectors predicted by a numerical mesoscale model of the atmosphere.

  16. Global Health Security: The Lessons from the West African Ebola Virus Disease Epidemic and MERS Outbreak in the Republic of Korea.

    PubMed

    Ghsa Preparation Task Force Team

    2015-12-01

    The Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa and the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome outbreak in the Republic of Korea have given huge impacts in different aspects. Health security is no more a new coinage. Global health security became more realistic in its practical application. In the perspective of global health, it will be helpful to peruse lessons learned from the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and MERS outbreak in Korea. PMID:27429901

  17. Junctional and allele-specific residues are critical for MERS-CoV neutralization by an exceptionally potent germline-like antibody

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Ying, Tianlei; Prabakaran, Ponraj; Du, Lanying; Shi, Wei; Feng, Yang; Wang, Yanping; Wang, Lingshu; Li, Wei; Jiang, Shibo; Dimitrov, Dimiter S.; et al

    2015-09-15

    The MERS-CoV is an emerging virus, which already infected more than 1,300 humans with high (~36%) mortality. Here, we show that m336, an exceptionally potent human anti-MERS-CoV antibody, is almost germline with only one somatic mutation in the heavy chain. The structure of Fab m336 in complex with the MERS-CoV receptor-binding domain reveals that its IGHV1-69-derived heavy chain provides more than 85% binding surface and that its epitope almost completely overlaps with the receptor-binding site. Analysis of antibodies from 69 healthy humans suggests an important role of the V(D)J recombination-generated junctional and allele-specific residues for achieving high affinity of bindingmore » at such low levels of somatic hypermutation. Our results also have important implications for development of vaccine immunogens based on the newly identified m336 epitope as well as for elucidation of mechanisms of neutralization by m336-like antibodies and their elicitation in vivo.« less

  18. Junctional and allele-specific residues are critical for MERS-CoV neutralization by an exceptionally potent germline-like antibody

    SciTech Connect

    Ying, Tianlei; Prabakaran, Ponraj; Du, Lanying; Shi, Wei; Feng, Yang; Wang, Yanping; Wang, Lingshu; Li, Wei; Jiang, Shibo; Dimitrov, Dimiter S.; Zhou, Tongqing

    2015-09-15

    The MERS-CoV is an emerging virus, which already infected more than 1,300 humans with high (~36%) mortality. Here, we show that m336, an exceptionally potent human anti-MERS-CoV antibody, is almost germline with only one somatic mutation in the heavy chain. The structure of Fab m336 in complex with the MERS-CoV receptor-binding domain reveals that its IGHV1-69-derived heavy chain provides more than 85% binding surface and that its epitope almost completely overlaps with the receptor-binding site. Analysis of antibodies from 69 healthy humans suggests an important role of the V(D)J recombination-generated junctional and allele-specific residues for achieving high affinity of binding at such low levels of somatic hypermutation. Our results also have important implications for development of vaccine immunogens based on the newly identified m336 epitope as well as for elucidation of mechanisms of neutralization by m336-like antibodies and their elicitation in vivo.

  19. Screening sourdough samples for gliadin-degrading activity revealed Lactobacillus casei strains able to individually metabolize the coeliac-disease-related 33-mer peptide.

    PubMed

    Alvarez-Sieiro, Patricia; Redruello, Begoña; Ladero, Victor; Martín, Maria Cruz; Fernández, María; Alvarez, Miguel A

    2016-05-01

    A selective culture medium containing acid-hydrolyzed gliadins as the sole nitrogen source was used in the search for sourdough-indigenous lactic acid bacteria (LAB) with gliadin-metabolizing activity. Twenty gliadin-degrading LAB strains were isolated from 10 sourdoughs made in different ways and from different geographical regions. Fifteen of the 20 isolated strains were identified as Lactobacillus casei, a species usually reported as subdominant in sourdough populations. The other 5 gliadin-degrading strains belonged to the more commonly encountered sourdough species Leuconostoc mesenteroides and Lactobacillus plantarum. All these strains were shown to be safe in terms of their resistance to antimicrobial agents. When individually incubated with the α2-gliadin-derived immunotoxic 33-mer peptide (97.5 ppm), half of the L. casei strains metabolized at least 50% of it within 24 h. One strain metabolized 82% of the 33-mer peptide within 8 h and made it fully disappear within 12 h. These results reveal for the first time the presence in sourdough of proteolytic L. casei strains with the capacity to individually metabolize the coeliac-disease-related 33-mer peptide. PMID:27021684

  20. Transposon Tagging of a Male-Sterility, Female-Sterility Gene, St8, Revealed that the Meiotic MER3 DNA Helicase Activity Is Essential for Fertility in Soybean

    PubMed Central

    Baumbach, Jordan; Pudake, Ramesh N.; Johnson, Callie; Kleinhans, Kaylin; Ollhoff, Alexandrea; Palmer, Reid G.; Bhattacharyya, Madan K.; Sandhu, Devinder

    2016-01-01

    The W4 locus in soybean encodes a dihydroflavonol-4-reductase (DFR2) that regulates pigmentation patterns in flowers and hypocotyl. The mutable w4-m allele that governs variegated flowers has arisen through insertion of a CACTA-type transposable element, Tgm9, in DFR2. In the w4-m line, reversion from variegated to purple flower indicates excision of Tgm9, and its insertion at a new locus. Previously, we have identified a male-sterile, female-sterile mutant among the selfed progenies of a revertant plant carrying only purple flowers. Co-segregation between Tgm9 and the sterility phenotype suggested that the mutant was generated by insertion of Tgm9 at the St8 locus. The transposon was localized to exon 10 of Glyma.16G072300 that shows high identity to the MER3 DNA helicase involved in crossing over. Molecular analysis of fertile branches from two independent revertant plants confirmed precise excision of Tgm9 from the st8 allele, which restored fertility. In soybean, the gene is expressed in flower-buds, trifoliate leaves and stem. Phylogenetic analysis placed St8 in a clade with the Arabidopsis and rice MER3 suggesting that St8 is most likely the orthologous MER3 soybean gene. This study established the utility of Tgm9 in gene identification as well as in forward and reverse genetics studies. PMID:26930200

  1. Junctional and allele-specific residues are critical for MERS-CoV neutralization by an exceptionally potent germline-like antibody

    PubMed Central

    Ying, Tianlei; Prabakaran, Ponraj; Du, Lanying; Shi, Wei; Feng, Yang; Wang, Yanping; Wang, Lingshu; Li, Wei; Jiang, Shibo; Dimitrov, Dimiter S.; Zhou, Tongqing

    2015-01-01

    The MERS-CoV is an emerging virus, which already infected more than 1,300 humans with high (∼36%) mortality. Here, we show that m336, an exceptionally potent human anti-MERS-CoV antibody, is almost germline with only one somatic mutation in the heavy chain. The structure of Fab m336 in complex with the MERS-CoV receptor-binding domain reveals that its IGHV1-69-derived heavy chain provides more than 85% binding surface and that its epitope almost completely overlaps with the receptor-binding site. Analysis of antibodies from 69 healthy humans suggests an important role of the V(D)J recombination-generated junctional and allele-specific residues for achieving high affinity of binding at such low levels of somatic hypermutation. Our results also have important implications for development of vaccine immunogens based on the newly identified m336 epitope as well as for elucidation of mechanisms of neutralization by m336-like antibodies and their elicitation in vivo. PMID:26370782

  2. Environmental significance of the potential for mer(Tn21)-mediated reduction of Hg2+ to Hg0 in natural waters.

    PubMed Central

    Barkay, T; Liebert, C; Gillman, M

    1989-01-01

    The role of mer(Tn21) in the adaptation of aquatic microbial communities to Hg2+ was investigated. Elemental mercury was the sole product of Hg2+ volatilization by freshwater and saline water microbial communities. Bacterial activity was responsible for biotransformation because most microeucaryotes did not survive the exposure conditions, and removal of larger microbes (greater than 1 micromole) from adapted communities did not significantly (P greater than 0.01) reduce Hg2+ volatilization rates. DNA sequences homologous to mer(Tn21) were found in 50% of Hg2+-resistant bacterial strains representing two freshwater communities, but in only 12% of strains representing two saline communities (the difference was highly significant; P less than 0.001). Thus, mer(Tn21) played a significant role in Hg2+ resistance among strains isolated from fresh waters, in which microbial activity had a limited role in Hg2+ volatilization. In saline water environments in which microbially mediated volatilization was the major mechanism of Hg2+ loss, other bacterial genes coded for this biotransformation. PMID:2547336

  3. PEDF and PEDF-derived peptide 44mer inhibit oxygen-glucose deprivation-induced oxidative stress through upregulating PPARγ via PEDF-R in H9c2 cells.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Wei; Zhang, Hao; Pan, Jiajun; Li, Zhimin; Wei, Tengteng; Cui, Huazhu; Liu, Zhiwei; Guan, Qiuhua; Dong, Hongyan; Zhang, Zhongming

    2016-04-01

    Pigment epithelial-derived factor (PEDF) is a glycoprotein with broad biological activities including inhibiting oxygen-glucose deprivation(OGD)-induced cardiomyocytes apoptosis through its anti-oxidative properties. PEDF derived peptide-44mer shows similar cytoprotective effect to PEDF. However, the molecular mechanisms mediating cardiomyocytes apoptosis have not been fully established. Here we found that PEDF and 44mer decreased the content of ROS. This content was abolished by either PEDF-R small interfering RNA (siRNA) or PPARγ antagonist. The level of Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and phospholipase A2 (PLA2) was observed as drawn from the ELISA assays. PEDF and 44mer sequentially induced PPARγ expression was observed both in qPCR and Western blot assays. The level of LPA and PLA2 and PPARγ expression increased by PEDF and 44mer was significantly attenuated by PEDF-R siRNA. However, PEDF and 44mer inhibited the H9c2 cells and cultured neonatal rat myocardial cells apoptosis rate. On the other hand, TUNEL assay and cleavage of procaspase-3 showed that PEDF-R siRNA or PPARγ antagonist increased the apoptosis again. We conclude that under OGD condition, PEDF and 44mer reduce H9c2 cells apoptosis and inhibit OGD-induced oxidative stress via its receptor PEDF-R and the PPARγ signaling pathway. PMID:26966066

  4. Mapping Hydration with the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Pancam Instruments: Recent Results from Opportunity at Endeavour Crater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rice, Melissa S.; Bell, James F., III; Arvidson, Raymond E.; Farrand, William H.; Johnson, Jeffrey R.; Rice, James W.; Ruff, Steven W.; Squyres, Steven W.; Wang, Alian

    2013-04-01

    Using the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Panoramic Camera (Pancam) instruments, we have developed a "hydration signature" for mapping H2O- and/or OH-bearing materials at Mars landing sites with multispectral visible to near-infrared (Vis-NIR) images. Pancam's 13 narrowband geology filters cover 11 unique wavelengths in the visible and near infrared (434 to 1009 nm) [1-2]. The hydration signature is based on a negative slope from 934 to 1009 nm [3] that characterizes the spectra of hydrated silica-rich rocks and soils observed by MER Spirit; this feature is likely due to the 2ν1 + ν3 H2O combination band and/or the 3νOH overtone centered near ~1000 nm, whose positions vary slightly depending on bonding to nearest-neighbor atoms [4]. The hydration signature is sensitive to many - but not all - hydrated minerals, including silica, gypsum and water ice. At Gusev Crater, the hydration signature is widespread along Spirit's traverse in the Columbia Hills, which adds to the growing body of evidence that aqueous alteration has played a significant role in the complex geologic history of this site [4]. At Meridiani Planum, the hydration signature is associated with a specific stratigraphic layer ("Smith") exposed within the walls of Victoria Crater [5], in addition to light-toned veins composed of calcium sulfate at Cape York on the rim of Endeavour Crater [6]. Recently, Opportunity has completed a traverse loop at Matijevic Hill at the southern end of Cape York and has encountered numerous small, light-toned, fracture-filling veins that may be indicative of fluid flow. Spectra of these veins are also consistent with hydrated materials, as are spectra of "Whitewater Lake" outcrops at Matijevic Hill, which may contain phyllosilicate minerals [7-8]. Here we also discuss limitations to the use of the hydration signature, which can give false detections under specific viewing geometries. For example, the Pancam calibration model assumes that the calibration target behaves as a

  5. Epidemiologic features of the first MERS outbreak in Korea: focus on Pyeongtaek St. Mary’s Hospital

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Kyung Min; Ki, Moran; Cho, Sung-il; Sung, Minki; Hong, Jin Kwan; Cheong, Hae-Kwan; Kim, Jong-Hun; Lee, Sang-Eun; Lee, Changhwan; Lee, Keon-Joo; Park, Yong-Shik; Kim, Seung Woo; Choi, Bo Youl

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: This study investigated the epidemiologic features of the confirmed cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in Pyeongtaek St. Mary’s Hospital, where the outbreak first began, in order to identify lessons relevant for the prevention and control of future outbreaks. METHODS: The patients’ clinical symptoms and test results were collected from their medical records. The caregivers of patients were identified by phone calls. RESULTS: After patient zero (case #1) was admitted to Pyeongtaek St. Mary’s Hospital (May 15-May 17), an outbreak occurred, with 36 cases between May 18 and June 4, 2015. Six patients died (fatality rate, 16.7%). Twenty-six cases occurred in the first-generation, and 10 in the second-generation. The median incubation period was five days, while the median period from symptom onset to death was 12.5 days. While the total attack rate was 3.9%, the attack rate among inpatients was 7.6%, and the inpatients on the eighth floor, where patient zero was hospitalized, had an 18.6% attack rate. In contrast, caregivers and medical staff showed attack rates of 3.3% and 1.1%, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The attack rates were higher than those of the previous outbreaks in other countries. The outbreak spread beyond Pyeongtaek St. Mary’s Hospital when four of the patients were moved to other hospitals without appropriate quarantine. The best method of preventing future outbreaks is to overcome the vulnerabilities observed in this outbreak, such as ward crowding, patient migration without appropriate data sharing, and the lack of an initial broad quarantine. PMID:26725225

  6. Signal pathways in up-regulation of chemokines by tyrosine kinase MER/NYK in prostate cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yi-Mi; Robinson, Dan R; Kung, Hsing-Jien

    2004-10-15

    The AXL/UFO family of tyrosine kinases is characterized by a common N-CAM (neural adhesion molecule)-related extracellular domain and a common ligand, GAS6 (growth arrest-specific protein 6). Family members are prone to transcriptional regulation and carry out diverse functions including the regulation of cell adhesion, migration, phagocytosis, and survival. In this report, we describe a new role of MER/N-CAM-related kinase (NYK), a member of the AXL family of kinases, in the up-regulation of chemokines in prostate cancer cells. We show that NYK has elevated expression in a subset of tumor specimens and prostate cancer cell lines. Activation of NYK in the prostate cancer cell line DU145 does not cause a mitogenic effect; instead, it causes a differentiation phenotype. Microarray analysis revealed that NYK is a strong inducer of endocrine factors including interleukin (IL)-8 and several other angiogenic CXC chemokines as well as bone morphogenic factors. The dramatic increase of IL-8 expression is seen at both transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels. The downstream signals engaged by NYK were characterized, and those responsible for the up-regulation of IL-8 transcription were defined. In contrast to IL-1alpha, NYK-induced up-regulation of IL-8 in DU145 depends on the mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase/extracellular signal-regulated kinase/Jun/Fos pathway, but not phosphoinositide 3'-kinase/nuclear factor-kappaB. These data define a new function of the AXL family of kinases and suggest a potential role of NYK in prostate cancer progression. PMID:15492251

  7. Listeria monocytogenes MerR-Like Regulator NmlRlm: Its Transcriptome and Role in Stress Response.

    PubMed

    Supa-Amornkul, Sirirak; Chantratita, Wasun; Srichunrusami, Chutatip; Janchompoo, Pareena; Chaturongakul, Soraya

    2016-07-01

    NmlR, a negative transcription regulator in the MerR family, is involved in oxidative and nitrosative stress response in Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Haemophilus influenzae. In this study, the objective was to characterize the role and the regulon of NmlR in the foodborne Listeria monocytogenes. An L. monocytogenes nmlR null mutant strain was constructed. Transcriptomes of strain 10403S wild type (WT) and ΔnmlRlm strains grown to the stationary phase were determined by mRNA sequencing. Differential expression analyses revealed 74 genes with altered expression levels (>9-fold difference), comprising 46 negatively and 28 positively regulated genes. Twenty-four NmlRlm-dependent genes overlap with the members of previously identified regulons of HrcA, a negative regulator of heat response in L. monocytogenes, and of alternative sigma factor σ(H). Phenotypic characterization revealed that the ΔnmlRlm strain survived significantly less than the WT under acid stress (pH 2.5 for 1 h) and oxidative stress (3% hydrogen peroxide for 1 h). In addition, nmlRlm deletion also resulted in a significant decrease (p < 0.0005) of cell length and enhanced intracellular growth in a differentiated macrophage-like U937 cell line during entry into stationary phase. These findings indicate that NmlRlm is not only involved in oxidative stress response but also contributes to other characteristics such as acid tolerance and intracellular growth, either through direct regulation or co-regulation with other regulators such as HrcA and σ(H). PMID:27058117

  8. MER Spirit rover localization: Comparison of ground image- and orbital image-based methods and science applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Rongxing; He, Shaojun; Chen, Yunhang; Tang, Min; Tang, Pingbo; Di, Kaichang; Matthies, Larry; Arvidson, Raymond E.; Squyres, Steven W.; Crumpler, Larry S.; Parker, Tim; Sims, Michael

    2011-02-01

    During 6 years of continuous operations on the Martian surface, the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit has covered a traverse of approximately 7 km from the landing point to its current position at “Troy” near Home Plate. Localization of Spirit (and Opportunity) has been performed using two different methods: one that employs an incremental bundle adjustment (IBA) using rover imagery, and one that compares image features common to both a rover orthoimage and an orbital orthoimage. The IBA method continuously yields the desired 3-D rover positions at a very high level of accuracy and provides a simultaneous solution for high-quality topographic mapping of neighborhoods surrounding the rover. On the other hand, high-resolution orbital imagery can verify rover positions wherever the rover track is visible. Rapid rover localization on the orbital orthoimage is often achieved by comparing a rover orthoimage to the orbital orthoimage. In this paper, we present research results from a systematic comparison of these two localization methods over the entire length of the Spirit traverse. Two orbital orthoimages were generated from High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) imagery. Integration of Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) data into the HiRISE digital elevation model (DEM) and orthoimage generation was performed and proved to be effective in reducing large inconsistencies between MOLA and HiRISE data. This study found an overall difference of 1.5 percent of the traversed distance between the two sets of traverse positions derived using the two different localization methods. After a geometric transformation from one traverse to the other, the remaining inconsistency then represents the local differences between them and can be reduced to a level of less than 0.15 percent. Discussions of error sources and the strength and weakness of the methods are given. Scientific applications of the localization data are also briefly introduced.

  9. Plasmid replication initiator interactions with origin 13-mers and polymerase subunits contribute to strand-specific replisome assembly

    PubMed Central

    Wawrzycka, Aleksandra; Gross, Marta; Wasaznik, Anna; Konieczny, Igor

    2015-01-01

    Although the molecular basis for replisome activity has been extensively investigated, it is not clear what the exact mechanism for de novo assembly of the replication complex at the replication origin is, or how the directionality of replication is determined. Here, using the plasmid RK2 replicon, we analyze the protein interactions required for Escherichia coli polymerase III (Pol III) holoenzyme association at the replication origin. Our investigations revealed that in E. coli, replisome formation at the plasmid origin involves interactions of the RK2 plasmid replication initiation protein (TrfA) with both the polymerase β- and α-subunits. In the presence of other replication proteins, including DnaA, helicase, primase and the clamp loader, TrfA interaction with the β-clamp contributes to the formation of the β-clamp nucleoprotein complex on origin DNA. By reconstituting in vitro the replication reaction on ssDNA templates, we demonstrate that TrfA interaction with the β-clamp and sequence-specific TrfA interaction with one strand of the plasmid origin DNA unwinding element (DUE) contribute to strand-specific replisome assembly. Wild-type TrfA, but not the TrfA QLSLF mutant (which does not interact with the β-clamp), in the presence of primase, helicase, Pol III core, clamp loader, and β-clamp initiates DNA synthesis on ssDNA template containing 13-mers of the bottom strand, but not the top strand, of DUE. Results presented in this work uncovered requirements for anchoring polymerase at the plasmid replication origin and bring insights of how the directionality of DNA replication is determined. PMID:26195759

  10. PM2, a group 3 LEA protein from soybean, and its 22-mer repeating region confer salt tolerance in Escherichia coli

    SciTech Connect

    Yun Liu; Zheng Yizhi . E-mail: yzzheng@szu.edu.cn

    2005-05-27

    To have knowledge of the effect of soybean PM2 protein in protecting dehydrated cells and its functional region, PM2 cDNA was isolated from soybean immature seeds. The recombinants expressing full-length PM2, truncated polypeptides of PM2A (aa 1-262) or PM2B (aa 129-262, 22-mer repeating region), or artificial polypeptide PM2C (duplication of 22-mer repeating region) were constructed. By using SDS-PAGE and mass spectrometry approaches, these fusion polypeptides were identified and proved to be hydrophilic and heat-stable. Spot assays of BL/PM2 and BL/pET28 (as control) showed that protein PM2 increased salt tolerance (500 mM NaCl or 500 mM KCl) of Escherichia coli, rather than osmotic tolerance (1100 mM sorbitol). In addition, comparing the survival ratios of the transformants under 500 mM NaCl or 500 mM KCl stresses, the results showed that: (1) the survival ratios of BL/PM2 and BL/PM2B were quite similar, both showing much higher values than those of BL/pET28. (2) The survival ratios of BL/PM2C were much higher than those of BL/PM2, BL/PM2A, and BL/PM2B. This provides the first experimental evidence that PM2 polypeptide enhances salt tolerance of E. coli cells, and the 22-mer repeat region is an important functional region.

  11. Synthesis, structure, catalytic and calculated non-linear optical properties of cis- and trans-, mer-chlorobis(triphenyl phosphine/triphenyl arsine)-dipicolinato ruthenium III complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trivedi, Manoj; Nagarajan, R.; Kumar, Abhinav; Singh, Narendra K.; Rath, Nigam P.

    2011-05-01

    The new mononuclear Ru III complexes cis-, mer-[Ru( k3-dipic)(EPh 3) 2Cl]·2H 2O (E = P ( 1), As ( 2)), (L = 2,6-pyridyldicarboxylate; dipic) have been synthesized and characterized. The X-ray crystal structure of 1 reveals that the coordination geometry around the Ru III center is distorted octahedral in which three sites are occupied by tridentate dipic ligand and remaining three sites are occupied by two mutually cis triphenyl phosphine ligands and one chloride ions. In chloroform solvent, cis-, mer-[Ru( k3-dipic)(EPh 3) 2Cl]·2H 2O (E = P ( 1), As ( 2)) complexes undergoes thermal rearrangement to more stable trans-, mer-[Ru( k3-dipic)(EPh 3) 2Cl] (E = P( 3), As( 4)) complexes. Complexes 1 and 2 show rhombic EPR spectral features, while complex 3 and 4 show tetragonal distortion. The new Ru III complexes 1 and 2 display both Ru III-Ru II reduction and Ru III-Ru IV oxidation processes. These geometric isomers exhibit textbook differences both in spectroscopic as well as structural properties in the solid state. The new complexes 1 and 2 were found to catalyze the oxidation of alcohols to carbonyl derivatives using N-methyl morpholine- N-oxide as co-oxidant. The first static hyperpolarizability ( β) for all of the complexes have been investigated by density functional theory (DFT) which suggests β value increases from trans to cis form. Also, the solvent-induced effects on the non-linear optical properties (NLO) were studied by using self-consistent reaction field (SCRF) method. As the solvent polarity increases, the β value increases monotonically. The electronic absorption bands of 1 have been assigned by time dependent density functional theory (TD-DFT).

  12. Coronaviruses (MERS and SARS)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Patients Procedure for Accessing Lab Services Data Package Requirements AIDS Therapies Resource Guide In Vitro Efficacy Evaluations ... Assurances to Users Application and Approval Process User Requirements Malaria Vaccine Production Services Data Sharing and Release ...

  13. ÉmerGéantes: a new Global Climate Model to study the dynamics of Saturn's stratosphere - and beyond

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiga, Aymeric; Guerlet, Sandrine; Sylvestre, Melody; Fouchet, Thierry

    2013-04-01

    Recent observational programs, both spatial and ground-based, have revealed the complexity of the middle atmospheres of giant planets. In particular, maps of the temperature and of the distribution of trace species in the Saturn stratosphere have been obtained by the Cassini spacecraft with unprecedented details. These maps exhibit puzzling anomalies, which cannot be explained by current photochemical and radiative models (none of them includes dynamics), and which have been interpreted as the signature of large-scale or seasonal dynamical motions. Yet Saturn's global circulation remains weakly characterized. Furthermore, on Saturn and Jupiter, equatorial oscillations in the zonal wind and temperature field have recently been discovered and are reminiscent of the Earth's Quasi-Biennial Oscillation, a fundamental dynamical phenomenon. These oscillations thus appear to be a common dynamical phenomenon in very different planetary atmospheres. We will present the development of "ÉmerGéantes", a new global climate model for giant planets. This new model is based on the LMDz dynamical core, which has been successfully adapted to terrestrial planets and moons: the Earth, Mars, Venus, Titan, Triton/Pluton. Details on the numerical challenges, the adaptations needed to simulate gas giants, and the optimization of the radiative transfer computations will be presented, along with preliminary results. The aim of this project is study in detail the atmospheric circulation of giant planets by resolving atmospheric circulations in their stratosphere (and, possibly, in the future, the coupling between their troposphere and stratosphere). It will serve as a new tool to address fundamental questions in geophysical fluid dynamics, explore the giant planets circulation patterns, and better interpret current and future observations. This new GCM will first be focused on reproducing Saturn's climate, following the harvest of observations obtained by the Cassini mission. We plan to

  14. Expedient chemical synthesis of 75mer DNA binding domain of MafA: an insight on its binding to insulin enhancer.

    PubMed

    Pellegrino, Sara; Annoni, Chiara; Contini, Alessandro; Clerici, Francesca; Gelmi, Maria Luisa

    2012-11-01

    An expedient chemical synthesis of a 75mer peptide corresponding to the DNA binding domain (DBD, 227-301) of the human MafA leucine zipper transcription factor is reported. The application of microwave-assisted solid phase peptide synthesis (MW-SPPS) with a protocol modified respect to the standard one allowed obtaining the desired 75mer peptide in a short time with high quantity and optimal purity. MW-SPPS methodology was thus demonstrated as a valuable alternative to recombinant methods to obtain protein domains. Considering that recent findings suggest an involvement of MafA in the pathogenesis of diabetes mellitus, we also performed circular dichroism studies both on DBD folding and its interaction with MafA recognition element (MARE) on insulin enhancer. From our results, it was evicted that a disorder to order transition occurs after DBD interaction with insulin MARE which is mediated by specific structural elements on the N-terminus of the DBD. PMID:22476346

  15. Public health response to two incidents of confirmed MERS-CoV cases travelling on flights through London Heathrow Airport in 2014 – lessons learnt.

    PubMed

    Parry-Ford, F; Boddington, N; Pebody, R; Phin, N

    2015-01-01

    In May 2014, Public Health England was alerted to two separate laboratory-confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection who transited through London Heathrow Airport while symptomatic on flights from Saudi Arabia to the United States of America. We present the rationale for the public health response to both incidents, and report results of contact tracing. Following a risk assessment, passengers seated two seats around the cases were prioritised for contact tracing and a proactive media approach was used to alert all passengers on the planes of their possible exposure in both incidents. In total, 64 United Kingdom (UK) residents were successfully contacted, 14 of whom were sat in the priority area two seats all around the case(s). Five passengers reported respiratory symptoms within 14 days of the flight, but all tested were negative for MERS-CoV. Details of non-UK residents were passed on to relevant World Health Organization International Health Regulation focal points for follow-up, and no further cases were reported back. Different approaches were used to manage contact tracing for each flight due to variations in the quality and timeliness of the passenger contact information provided by the airlines involved. No evidence of symptomatic onward transmission was found. PMID:25990234

  16. Structural basis of thiol-based regulation of formaldehyde detoxification in H. influenzae by a MerR regulator with no sensor region.

    PubMed

    Couñago, Rafael M; Chen, Nathan H; Chang, Chiung-Wen; Djoko, Karrera Y; McEwan, Alastair G; Kobe, Bostjan

    2016-08-19

    Pathogenic bacteria such as Haemophilus influenzae, a major cause of lower respiratory tract diseases, must cope with a range of electrophiles generated in the host or by endogenous metabolism. Formaldehyde is one such compound that can irreversibly damage proteins and DNA through alkylation and cross-linking and interfere with redox homeostasis. Its detoxification operates under the control of HiNmlR, a protein from the MerR family that lacks a specific sensor region and does not bind metal ions. We demonstrate that HiNmlR is a thiol-dependent transcription factor that modulates H. influenzae response to formaldehyde, with two cysteine residues (Cys54 and Cys71) identified to be important for its response against a formaldehyde challenge. We obtained crystal structures of HiNmlR in both the DNA-free and two DNA-bound forms, which suggest that HiNmlR enhances target gene transcription by twisting of operator DNA sequences in a two-gene operon containing overlapping promoters. Our work provides the first structural insights into the mechanism of action of MerR regulators that lack sensor regions. PMID:27307602

  17. Multi-stringency wash of partially hybridized 60-mer probes reveals that the stringency along the probe decreases with distance from the microarray surface

    PubMed Central

    Poulsen, Lena; Søe, Martin Jensen; Snakenborg, Detlef; Møller, Lisbeth Birk; Dufva, Martin

    2008-01-01

    Here, we describe a multi-parametric study of DNA hybridization to probes with 20–70% G + C content. Probes were designed towards 71 different sites/mutations in the phenylalanine hydroxylase gene. Seven probe lengths, three spacer lengths and six stringencies were systematically varied. The three spacer lengths were obtained by placing the gene-specific sequence in discrete steps along the 60-mer probes. The study was performed using Agilent 8 × 15 000 probes custom-made arrays and a home-built array washer providing different stringencies to each of the eight sub-arrays on the slides. Investigation of hybridization signals, specificity and dissociation curves indicated that probes close to the surface were influenced by an additional stringency provided by the microarray surface. Consistent with this, probes close to the surface required 4 × SSC, while probes placed away from the surface required 0.35 × SSC wash buffers in order to give accurate genotyping results. Multiple step dissociation was frequently observed for probes placed furthest away from surface, but not for probes placed proximal to the surface, which is consistent with the hypothesis that there is different stringency along the 60-mer. The results have impact on design of probes for genotyping, gene expression and comparative genome hybridization analysis. PMID:18805905

  18. Rates and Controls of N2 Fixation in Sphagnum spp. along the Hydrological Gradient - Beaver Pond to Bog Transition at Mer Bleue, Ontario, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zivkovic, T.; Moore, T. R.

    2014-12-01

    Many northern bogs with low atmospheric N inputs acquire N only via N2-fixation. Little is known about rates and controls on N2-fixation in bogs. The aim of this study was to: 1) test the important ecological drivers for N2-fixation, 2) investigate seasonal and temporal patterns of N2 fixation, and 3) to estimate current N2-fixation rates at Mer Bleue bog. We used acetylene reduction assay (ARA) to measure N2-fixation from June-October 2013 and 2014 (currently ongoing field season) along a hydrological gradient (beaver pond, hollows and hummocks). The highest ARA rates in 2013 growing season occurred in the pond in floating Sphagnum cuspidatum mats (50.3 ± 12.9 μmol m-2 d-1 Mean ± Std Err) which were up to 2.5 times latger than the rates found in the hummock with the lowest water table depth throughout the season. Two rain events during the summer 2013 increased ARA rates in all plots by 1 to 4 times, suggesting that moisture availability may play a crucial role on N2 fixation potential in the field. We are currently investigating the role of moisture, temperature, PAR and nutrient content (N, phosphorous and metals) on ARA along the gradient. In addition, we are using 15N2 enrichment method to estimate N2 fixation rates and compare them to ARA method at Mer Bleue bog.

  19. Estimation of the genome sizes of the chigger mites Leptotrombidium pallidum and Leptotrombidium scutellare based on quantitative PCR and k-mer analysis

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Leptotrombidium pallidum and Leptotrombidium scutellare are the major vector mites for Orientia tsutsugamushi, the causative agent of scrub typhus. Before these organisms can be subjected to whole-genome sequencing, it is necessary to estimate their genome sizes to obtain basic information for establishing the strategies that should be used for genome sequencing and assembly. Method The genome sizes of L. pallidum and L. scutellare were estimated by a method based on quantitative real-time PCR. In addition, a k-mer analysis of the whole-genome sequences obtained through Illumina sequencing was conducted to verify the mutual compatibility and reliability of the results. Results The genome sizes estimated using qPCR were 191 ± 7 Mb for L. pallidum and 262 ± 13 Mb for L. scutellare. The k-mer analysis-based genome lengths were estimated to be 175 Mb for L. pallidum and 286 Mb for L. scutellare. The estimates from these two independent methods were mutually complementary and within a similar range to those of other Acariform mites. Conclusions The estimation method based on qPCR appears to be a useful alternative when the standard methods, such as flow cytometry, are impractical. The relatively small estimated genome sizes should facilitate whole-genome analysis, which could contribute to our understanding of Arachnida genome evolution and provide key information for scrub typhus prevention and mite vector competence. PMID:24947244

  20. k-merSNP discovery: Software for alignment-and reference-free scalable SNP discovery, phylogenetics, and annotation for hundreds of microbial genomes

    SciTech Connect

    2014-11-18

    With the flood of whole genome finished and draft microbial sequences, we need faster, more scalable bioinformatics tools for sequence comparison. An algorithm is described to find single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in whole genome data. It scales to hundreds of bacterial or viral genomes, and can be used for finished and/or draft genomes available as unassembled contigs or raw, unassembled reads. The method is fast to compute, finding SNPs and building a SNP phylogeny in minutes to hours, depending on the size and diversity of the input sequences. The SNP-based trees that result are consistent with known taxonomy and trees determined in other studies. The approach we describe can handle many gigabases of sequence in a single run. The algorithm is based on k-mer analysis.

  1. k-merSNP discovery: Software for alignment-and reference-free scalable SNP discovery, phylogenetics, and annotation for hundreds of microbial genomes

    Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC)

    2014-11-18

    With the flood of whole genome finished and draft microbial sequences, we need faster, more scalable bioinformatics tools for sequence comparison. An algorithm is described to find single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in whole genome data. It scales to hundreds of bacterial or viral genomes, and can be used for finished and/or draft genomes available as unassembled contigs or raw, unassembled reads. The method is fast to compute, finding SNPs and building a SNP phylogeny inmore » minutes to hours, depending on the size and diversity of the input sequences. The SNP-based trees that result are consistent with known taxonomy and trees determined in other studies. The approach we describe can handle many gigabases of sequence in a single run. The algorithm is based on k-mer analysis.« less

  2. The daily computed weighted averaging basic reproduction number R>0,k,ωn for MERS-CoV in South Korea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jeong, Darae; Lee, Chang Hyeong; Choi, Yongho; Kim, Junseok

    2016-06-01

    In this paper, we propose the daily computed weighted averaging basic reproduction number R0,k,ωn for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak in South Korea, May to July 2015. We use an SIR model with piecewise constant parameters β (contact rate) and γ (removed rate). We use the explicit Euler's method for the solution of the SIR model and a nonlinear least-square fitting procedure for finding the best parameters. In R0,k,ωn, the parameters n, k, and w denote days from a reference date, the number of days in averaging, and a weighting factor, respectively. We perform a series of numerical experiments and compare the results with the real-world data. In particular, using the predicted reproduction number based on the previous two consecutive reproduction numbers, we can predict the future behavior of the reproduction number.

  3. Synthesis, crystal structures and magnetic properties of mer-cyanideiron(III)-based 1D heterobimetallic cyanide-bridged chiral coordination polymers.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Daopeng; Zhuo, Shuping; Zhang, Hongyan; Wang, Ping; Jiang, Jianzhuang

    2015-03-14

    Two pairs of cyanide-bridged Fe(III)–Mn(III)/Cu(II) chiral enantiomer coordination polymers {[Mn(S,S/R,R-Salcy)(CH3OH)2]{[Mn(S,S/R,R-Salcy)][Fe(bbp)(CN)3]}}2n (1,2) (bbp = bis(2-benzimidazolyl)pyridine dianion) and {[Cu(S,S/R,R-Chxn)2]2[Fe2(tbbp)(CN)6]}n (3,4) (tbbp = tetra(3-benzimidazolyl)-4,4′-bipyridine tetraanion) have been successfully prepared by employing mer-tricyanometallate [PPh4]2[Fe(bbp)(CN)3] or the newly bimetallic mer-cyanideiron(III) precursor K4[Fe2(tbbp)(CN)6] as building blocks and with chiral manganese(III)/copper(II) compounds as assemble segments. The four complexes have been characterized by elemental analysis, IR spectroscopy, circular dichroism (CD) and magnetic circular dichroism (MCD) spectra. Single X-ray diffraction reveals that complexes 1 and 2 possess a single anionic chain structure consisting of the asymmetric chiral {[Mn(S,S/R,R-Salcy)][Fe(bbp)(CN)3]}2(2−) unit with free [Mn(S,S/R,R-Salcy)](+) as balanced cations. The cyanide-bridged Fe(III)–Cu(II) complexes 3 and 4 can be structurally characterized as neutral ladder-like double chains composed of the alternating cyanide-bridged Fe–Cu units. Our investigation of magnetic susceptibilities reveals the antiferromagnetic coupling between the cyanide-bridged Fe(III) and Mn(III)/Cu(II) ions for complexes 1–4. These results have been further confirmed by theoretical simulation through numerical matrix diagonalization techniques using a Fortran program or a uniform chain model, leading to the coupling constants J = −7.36 cm(−1), D = −1.52 cm(−1) (1) and J = −4.35 cm(−1) (3), respectively. PMID:25661782

  4. The MerR-Like Regulator BrlR Impairs Pseudomonas aeruginosa Biofilm Tolerance to Colistin by Repressing PhoPQ

    PubMed Central

    Chambers, Jacob R.

    2013-01-01

    While the MerR-like transcriptional regulator BrlR has been demonstrated to contribute to Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilm tolerance to antimicrobial agents known as multidrug efflux pump substrates, the role of BrlR in resistance to cationic antimicrobial peptides (CAP), which is based on reduced outer membrane susceptibility, is not known. Here, we demonstrate that inactivation of brlR coincided with increased resistance of P. aeruginosa to colistin, while overexpression of brlR resulted in increased susceptibility. brlR expression correlated with reduced transcript abundances of phoP, phoQ, pmrA, pmrB, and arnC. Inactivation of pmrA and pmrB had no effect on the susceptibility of P. aeruginosa biofilms to colistin, while inactivation of phoP and phoQ rendered biofilms more susceptible than the wild type. The susceptibility phenotype of ΔphoP biofilms to colistin was comparable to that of P. aeruginosa biofilms overexpressing brlR. BrlR was found to directly bind to oprH promoter DNA of the oprH-phoPQ operon. BrlR reciprocally contributed to colistin and tobramycin resistance in P. aeruginosa PAO1 and CF clinical isolates, with overexpression of brlR resulting in increased tobramycin MICs and increased tobramycin resistance but decreased colistin MICs and increased colistin susceptibility. The opposite trend was observed upon brlR inactivation. The difference in susceptibility to colistin and tobramycin was eliminated by combination treatment of biofilms with both antibiotics. Our findings establish BrlR as an unusual member of the MerR family, as it not only functions as a multidrug transport activator, but also acts as a repressor of phoPQ expression, thus suppressing colistin resistance. PMID:23935054

  5. Structural Studies of Apo Nosl, an Accessory Protein of the Nitrous Oxide Reductase System: Insights from Structural Homology with MerB, a Mercury Resistance Protein

    SciTech Connect

    Taubner, Lara M.; McGuirl, Michele A.; Dooley, David M.; Copie, Valerie

    2006-10-01

    The formation of the unique catalytic tetranuclear copper cluster (CuZ) of nitrous oxide reductase, N2OR, requires the coexpression of a multiprotein assembly apparatus encoded by the nosDFYL operon. NosL, one of the proteins encoded by this transcript, is a 20 kDa lipoprotein of the periplasm that has been shown to bind copper(I), although its function has yet to be detemined. Cu(I) EXAFS data collected on the holo protein demonstrated that features of the copper binding site are consistent with a role for this protein as a metallochaperone, a class of metal ion transporters involved in metal resistance, homeostasis, and metallocluster biosynthesis. To test this hypothesis and to gain insight into other potential functional roles for this protein in the N2OR system, the three-dimensional solution structure of apo NosL has been solved by solution NMR methods. The structure of apo NosL consists of two relatively independent homologous domains that adopt an unusual ββαβ topology. The fold of apo NosL displays structural homology to only one other protein, MerB, an organomercury lyase involved in bacterial mercury resistance. The structural similarity between apo NosL and MerB, together with the absolute conservation of Met109 in all NosL sequences, indicates that this residue may be involved in copper ligation, and that the metal binding site is likely to be solvent-accessible and contiguous with a large binding cleft. The structural observations suggest that NosL is exceptionally adapted for a role in copper and/or sulfur delivery and possibly for metallochaperone function.

  6. Monitoring of gluten-free diet compliance in celiac patients by assessment of gliadin 33-mer equivalent epitopes in feces123

    PubMed Central

    Comino, Isabel; Real, Ana; Vivas, Santiago; Síglez, Miguel Ángel; Caminero, Alberto; Nistal, Esther; Casqueiro, Javier; Rodríguez-Herrera, Alfonso; Cebolla, Ángel

    2012-01-01

    Background: Certain immunotoxic peptides from gluten are resistant to gastrointestinal digestion and can interact with celiac-patient factors to trigger an immunologic response. A gluten-free diet (GFD) is the only effective treatment for celiac disease (CD), and its compliance should be monitored to avoid cumulative damage. However, practical methods to monitor diet compliance and to detect the origin of an outbreak of celiac clinical symptoms are not available. Objective: We assessed the capacity to determine the gluten ingestion and monitor GFD compliance in celiac patients by the detection of gluten and gliadin 33-mer equivalent peptidic epitopes (33EPs) in human feces. Design: Fecal samples were obtained from healthy subjects, celiac patients, and subjects with other intestinal pathologies with different diet conditions. Gluten and 33EPs were analyzed by using immunochromatography and competitive ELISA with a highly sensitive antigliadin 33-mer monoclonal antibody. Results: The resistance of a significant part of 33EPs to gastrointestinal digestion was shown in vitro and in vivo. We were able to detect gluten peptides in feces of healthy individuals after consumption of a normal gluten-containing diet, after consumption of a GFD combined with controlled ingestion of a fixed amount of gluten, and after ingestion of <100 mg gluten/d. These methods also allowed us to detect GFD infringement in CD patients. Conclusions: Gluten-derived peptides could be sensitively detected in human feces in positive correlation with the amount of gluten intake. These techniques may serve to show GFD compliance or infringement and be used in clinical research in strategies to eliminate gluten immunotoxic peptides during digestion. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01478867. PMID:22258271

  7. A compact, in vivo screen of all 6-mers reveals drivers of tissue-specific expression and guides synthetic regulatory element design

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Large-scale annotation efforts have improved our ability to coarsely predict regulatory elements throughout vertebrate genomes. However, it is unclear how complex spatiotemporal patterns of gene expression driven by these elements emerge from the activity of short, transcription factor binding sequences. Results We describe a comprehensive promoter extension assay in which the regulatory potential of all 6 base-pair (bp) sequences was tested in the context of a minimal promoter. To enable this large-scale screen, we developed algorithms that use a reverse-complement aware decomposition of the de Bruijn graph to design a library of DNA oligomers incorporating every 6-bp sequence exactly once. Our library multiplexes all 4,096 unique 6-mers into 184 double-stranded 15-bp oligomers, which is sufficiently compact for in vivo testing. We injected each multiplexed construct into zebrafish embryos and scored GFP expression in 15 tissues at two developmental time points. Twenty-seven constructs produced consistent expression patterns, with the majority doing so in only one tissue. Functional sequences are enriched near biologically relevant genes, match motifs for developmental transcription factors, and are required for enhancer activity. By concatenating tissue-specific functional sequences, we generated completely synthetic enhancers for the notochord, epidermis, spinal cord, forebrain and otic lateral line, and show that short regulatory sequences do not always function modularly. Conclusions This work introduces a unique in vivo catalog of short, functional regulatory sequences and demonstrates several important principles of regulatory element organization. Furthermore, we provide resources for designing compact, reverse-complement aware k-mer libraries. PMID:23867016

  8. Benthic trophic network in the Bay of Banyuls-sur-Mer (northwest Mediterranean, France): An assessment based on stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlier, Antoine; Riera, Pascal; Amouroux, Jean-Michel; Bodiou, Jean-Yves; Grémare, Antoine

    2007-03-01

    The benthic trophic network in the Bay of Banyuls-sur-Mer was studied through the carbon and nitrogen isotopic characterization of a large set of soft-bottom macrobenthic invertebrates, fishes and potential food sources. Continental inputs as well as seagrass meadows did not contribute significantly to this benthic trophic network as indicated by: (1) the difference between their δ 13C signatures (respectively -28.4‰ and -9.5‰) and those of sampled animals (between -21.0‰ and -14.6‰); and (2) their low inputs to the bay. Benthic primary consumers fed mostly on surface sediment organic matter (SSOM), which tightly interacts with suspended particulate organic matter (SPOM) and sedimenting organic matter (STOM) due to sediment resuspension. Our results also suggest the occurrence of a transfer between marine SPOM and some invertebrates (e.g. Veretillum cynomorium) and fishes (e.g. Boops boops and Spicara melanurus) through zooplankton. Moreover, the different types of primary consumers (i.e., suspension-feeders, interface-feeders, surface deposit-feeders and subsurface deposit-feeders) preferentially used distinct fractions of the heterogeneous SPOM-STOM-SSOM pool. These differences were mostly related with feeding depth and resulted in distinct isotopic signatures. Differences in the stable isotopic ratios of suspension and interface-feeders could also partly reflect the use of microphytobenthos by the later. Assuming a 15N-enrichment factor of 3.4‰ between the lower and upper ranges of two successive trophic levels, we estimated that the benthic food web of the Bay of Banyuls-sur-Mer was composed of 4 trophic levels. The comparison with our δ 13C values suggests that the whole trophic food chain is affected by continental inputs at the immediate vicinity of the Rhône River mouth even though these effects are maximal for deposit-feeding and carnivorous polychaetes.

  9. Distinguishing Na, K, and H3O+ Jarosite and Alunite on Mars using VNIR, Emittance and Mossbauer Spectroscopy on the MER and Mars Express/OMEGA Missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bishop, J. L.; Rothstein, Y.; Dyar, M. D.; Lane, M. D.; Klima, R. L.; Brophy, G. P.

    2005-12-01

    Jarosite has been identified in layered outcrops in Meridiani by the MER Mossbauer spectrometer [Klingelhofer, et al., 2004] and may be present elsewhere on Mars. We are studying VNIR, emittance and Mossbauer spectroscopy of a suite of synthetic and natural samples of jarosite and alunite from the Brophy collection [e.g. Brophy and Sheridan, 1965]. The characteristic NIR overtones and combination bands in this group differ not only depending on the trivalent cation (e.g. Al for alunite and Fe for jarosite), but also depending on the type of monovalent cation (typically K, Na and/or H3O). The VNIR spectrum of K-jarosite exhibits an OH stretching band at 1.47 um, an OH stretch + 2 bend combination doublet at 1.849 and 1.864 um, plus an OH stretch + bend combination triplet at 2.215, 2.265, and 2.300 um and additional OH and SO4 combination features near 2.40, 2.46, 2.50, 2.60 and 2.62 um. H3O- and Na-jarosite spectra exhibit broader features and the doublet is less resolvable. The spectrum of Na-jarosite contains a band at 1.48 um, a broad asymmetric band near 1.85 um and a triplet near 2.235, 2.275, and 2.310 um, plus additional features near 2.42, 2.47, 2.52, 2.62 and 2.64 um. Band assignments for jarosite and alunite spectra are from Bishop and Murad [2005]. We are in the process of comparing these spectra with the mid-IR and Mossbauer spectra of this jarosite group sample suite in order to perform coordinated analyses for this sulfate group on Mars using the MER and Mars Express datasets. References: Bishop, J. L., and E. Murad (2005), The visible and infrared spectral properties of jarosite and alunite, Am. Miner., 90, 1100-1107. Brophy, G. P., and M. F. Sheridan (1965), Sulfate studies IV: The jarosite-natrojarosite-hydronium jarosite solid solution series, Am. Miner., 50, 1595-1607. Klingelhofer, G., et al. (2004), Jarosite and hematite at Meridiani Planum from Opportunity's Mossbauer spectrometer, Science, 306, 1740-1745.

  10. Synthesis, structures, and photophysical properties of π-expanded oligothiophene 8-mers and their Saturn-like C₆₀ complexes.

    PubMed

    Shimizu, Hideyuki; Cojal González, José D; Hasegawa, Masashi; Nishinaga, Tohru; Haque, Tahmina; Takase, Masayoshi; Otani, Hiroyuki; Rabe, Jürgen P; Iyoda, Masahiko

    2015-03-25

    Two isomers of a multifunctional π-expanded macrocyclic oligothiophene 8-mer, E,E-1 and Z,Z-1, were synthesized using a McMurry coupling of a dialdehyde composed of four 2,5-thienylene and three ethynylene units under high dilution conditions. On the other hand, cyclo[8](2,5-thienylene-ethynylene) 2 was synthesized by intramolecular Sonogashira cyclization of ethynyl bromide 5. From STM measurements, both E,E-1 and Z,Z-1 formed self-assembled monolayers at the solid-liquid interface to produce porous networks, and from X-ray analyses of E,E-1 and 2, both compounds had a round shape with a honeycomb stacked structure. E,E-1 formed various fibrous polymorphs due to nanophase separation of the macrorings. E,E-1 and Z,Z-1 in solution exhibited photochromism upon irradiation with visible and UV light, respectively, and this photoisomerization was confirmed by using STM. Furthermore, amorphous films of Z,Z-1 and E,E-1 showed photoisomerization, although single crystals, fibers, and square tubes of E,E-1 remained unchanged under similar conditions. E,E-1 with a 12.5-14.7 Å inner cavity incorporated fullerene C60 in the cavity in solution and the solid state to produce a Saturn-like complex, whose structure was determined by X-ray analysis. 2 also formed a Saturn-like complex with C60 in the solid state. These Saturn-like complexes are stabilized by van der Waals interactions between the sulfur atoms of 8-mer and C60. The complexes exhibited charge-transfer interactions in the solid state. Like E,E-1, Saturn-like complex E,E-1⊃C60 formed small cube and fiber structures depending on the solvent used, whereas those of Saturn-like complex 2⊃C60 were limited due to the rigidity of the macroring of 2. PMID:25699988

  11. Comparing Apollo and Mars Exploration Rover (MER)/phoenix operations paradigms for human exploration during NASA Desert-RATS science operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yingst, R. A.; Cohen, B. A.; Ming, D. W.; Eppler, D. B.

    2013-10-01

    The Desert Research and Technology Studies (D-RATS) field tested two models of human-in-the-loop remote field geology: one based on the Apollo science backroom that integrated tactical and strategic decisions, and one that separated tactical and strategic processes as utilized during the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) and Mars Phoenix Scout missions. The 2010 D-RATS field test was the first attempt at integrating best practices from these two models, to determine how best to maximize science return from future missions. The Apollo model was utilized in 2008 and 2009 as a way to integrate science into field analog studies; the model allowed for real time communications between the crew on the surface and the scientists in the backroom. This model greatly improved efficiency of field operations and scientific return, but did not allow sufficient time for hypotheses to mature to the point where they could inform operations. The MER/Phoenix model, adapted for the 2010 D-RATS test, divided the responsibilities and processes of tactical science and strategic science. This division provided opportunities to discuss science results in greater detail so that the overall planning of science observations could be iterative rather than static. However, because of the nearly complete separation of the two science teams, there was a great deal of repeated effort as the strategic team had no prior knowledge of the tactical process and the observations that led to certain tactical decisions. Lessons learned from 2010 D-RATS science operations include: (1) well-trained geologists on the crew and a science backroom with which that crew can interact are both critical components for maximizing science return; (2) sufficient time or another mechanism that increases time available to be spent on science analysis must be built into the system to allow free rein to the scientific process; (3) data flow must be improved so that time is not wasted in repetitive review of acquired datasets

  12. Fusion and Visualization of HiRISE Super-Resolution, Shape-from-Shading DTM with MER Stereo 3D Reconstructions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, S.; Paar, G.; Muller, J. P.; Tao, Y.; Tyler, L.; Traxler, C.; Hesina, G.; Huber, B.; Nauschnegg, B.

    2014-12-01

    The FP7-SPACE project PRoViDE has assembled a major portion of the imaging data gathered so far from rover vehicles, landers and probes on extra-terrestrial planetary surfaces into a unique database, bringing them into a common planetary geospatial context and providing access to a complete set of 3D vision products. One major aim of PRoViDE is the fusion between orbiter and rover image products. To close the gap between HiRISE imaging resolution (down to 25cm for the OrthoRectified image (ORI), down to 1m for the DTM) and surface vision products, images from multiple HiRISE acquisitions are combined into a super resolution data set (Tao & Muller, 2014), increasing to 5cm resolution the Ortho images. Furthermore, shape-from-shading is applied to one of the ORIs at its original resolution for refinement of the HiRISE DTM, leading to DTM ground resolutions of up to 25 cm. After texture-based co-registration with these refined orbiter 3D products, MER PanCam and NavCam 3D image products can be smoothly pasted into a multi-resolution 3D data representation. Typical results from the MER mission are presented by a dedicated real-time rendering tool which is fed by a hierarchical 3D data structure that is able to cope with all involved scales from global planetary scale down to close-up reconstructions in the mm range. This allows us to explore and analyze the geological characteristics of rock outcrops, for example the detailed geometry and internal features of sedimentary rock layers, to aid paleoenvironmental interpretation. This integrated approach enables more efficient development of geological models of martian rock outcrops. The rendering tool also provides measurement tools to obtain geospatial data of surface points and distances between them. We report on novel scientific use cases and the added value potential of the resultant high-quality data set and presentation means to support further geologic investigations. The research leading to these results has

  13. Mapping Hydrated Materials with MER Pancam and MSL Mastcam: Results from Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum, and Plans for Gale Crater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rice, M. S.; Bell, J. F.

    2011-12-01

    We have developed a "hydration signature" for mapping H2O- and/or OH-bearing materials at Mars landing sites using multispectral visible to near-infrared (Vis-NIR) observations from the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Panoramic Camera (Pancam). Pancam's 13 narrowband geology filters cover 11 unique wavelengths in the visible and near infrared (434 to 1009 nm). The hydration signature is based on a strongly negative slope from 934 to 1009 nm that characterizes the spectra of hydrated silica-rich rocks and soils observed by MER Spirit; this feature is likely due to the 2ν1 + ν3 H2O combination band and/or the 3vOH overtone centered near ~1000 nm, whose positions vary slightly depending on bonding to nearest-neighbor atoms. Here we present the ways we have used this hydration signature, in combination with observations of morphology and texture, to remotely identify candidate hydrated materials in Pancam observations. At Gusev Crater, we find that the hydration signature is widespread along Spirit's traverse in the Columbia Hills, which adds to the growing body of evidence that aqueous alteration has played a significant role in the complex geologic history of this site. At Meridiani Planum, the hydration signature is associated with a specific stratigraphic layer ("Smith") exposed within the walls of Victoria Crater. We also discuss limitations to the use of the hydration signature, which can give false detections under specific viewing geometries. This hydration signature can similarly be used to map hydrated materials at the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) landing site, Gale Crater. The MSL Mast Camera (Mastcam) is a two-instrument suite of fixed-focal length (FFL) cameras, one with a 15-degree field of view (FOV) and the other with a 5.1-degree FOV. Mastcam's narrowband filters cover 9 unique wavelengths in the visible and near-infrared (band centers near 440, 525, 675, 750, 800, 865, 905, 935, and 1035 nm), and are distributed between the two FFL cameras. Full

  14. Calendar-dated glacier variations in the western European Alps during the Neoglacial: the Mer de Glace record, Mont Blanc massif

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Roy, Melaine; Nicolussi, Kurt; Deline, Philip; Astrade, Laurent; Edouard, Jean-Louis; Miramont, Cécile; Arnaud, Fabien

    2015-01-01

    Holocene glacier records from the western European Alps are still sparse, although a number of sites are well suited to constraining pre- and early- Little Ice Age (LIA) glacier advances. The present study provides the first dendrochronologically-based and calendar-dated Neoglacial glacier chronology for the Mont Blanc massif, French Alps. It is based on the analysis of over 240 glacially buried Pinus cembra subfossil logs and wood remains found either embedded-in-till or as detrital material in the Mer de Glace right lateral moraine. Only a few of the samples were found to be 'formally in situ' but we show that some logs were 'virtually in situ' (not rooted but showing little or no evidence of reworking) and could be used to accurately reconstruct past glacier margin behavior in space and time. Uncertainties regarding the other samples may relate to original growth location and/or to outer wood decay. The resulting dates (followed by a '+') were therefore considered maximum-limiting ages for glacier advances. The main burial events - interpreted as glacier advances - occurred between ca 1655+ and 1544+ BC, between ca 1230+ and 1105+ BC, between ca 1013+ and 962+/937+ BC, at ca 802-777 BC, after 608+ BC, between 312 and 337 AD, between ca 485+ AD and 606+ AD, between 1120 and 1178 AD, between ca 1248 and 1278+/1296 AD, and after 1352+ AD. These advances predate the late LIA maxima known from historical sources. The magnitude of the advances gradually increased to culminate in three near-Neoglacial maxima during the 7th, 12th and 13th centuries AD, followed by a first LIA/Neoglacial maximum in the second half of the 14th century AD. The pattern of Neoglacial events described here is coherent with Central and Eastern Alpine glacier chronologies. This indicates marked synchronicity of late Holocene glacier variability and forcing at a regional scale, although occasional differences could be detected between 'Western' and 'Eastern' records. The Mer de Glace record also

  15. Apoptotic cell clearance of Leishmania major-infected neutrophils by dendritic cells inhibits CD8⁺ T-cell priming in vitro by Mer tyrosine kinase-dependent signaling.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro-Gomes, F L; Romano, A; Lee, S; Roffê, E; Peters, N C; Debrabant, A; Sacks, D

    2015-01-01

    Neutrophils are the predominant recruited and infected cells during the early stages of Leishmania major infection in the skin, and depletion of neutrophils promotes immunity to infection transmitted by sand fly bite. In order to better understand how the acute neutrophilic response suppresses immunity, we assessed the consequences of the interaction between neutrophils recovered from the skin-inoculation site and bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (DCs) in vitro. The capture of infected, apoptotic neutrophils by the DCs completely inhibited their cross-presentation function that was dependent on engagement of the receptor tyrosine kinase Mer on the DCs. The capture of uninfected neutrophils, or neutrophils infected with Toxoplasma gondii, had only slight immunomodulatory effects. These studies define the clearance of infected, apoptotic neutrophils by DCs and Mer receptor signaling as central to the early immune evasion strategies of L. major, with relevance to other vector-borne pathogens delivered by bite to the skin. PMID:26658192

  16. Palaeo-ecological quality status based on foraminifera of Boulogne-sur-Mer harbour (Pas-de-Calais, Northeastern France) over the last 200 years.

    PubMed

    Francescangeli, F; Armynot du Chatelet, E; Billon, G; Trentesaux, A; Bouchet, V M P

    2016-06-01

    Over the last centuries, coastal areas have experienced dramatic degradations of their environmental quality, which has led to a huge reduction of marine biodiversity. The objective of the present study was to use geochemical parameters and benthic fossil foraminifera to assess environmental changes that have occurred over the last 200 years in a harbour area (Boulogne-sur-Mer, Northern France) heavily modified by human activities. A multidisciplinary approach including major and trace metals, grain-size, total organic carbon and benthic fossil foraminifera, has been performed on a 33-cm long core. The dating was carried out using the activity of (210)Pb and (137)Cs. Embayment of the area and increase of trace metals concentrations induced a shift in benthic communities. Human activities modified a sandy nearshore bank, colonized by typical marine foraminiferal species, such as Cribroelphiudium excavatum, into a sheltered environment, dominated by brackish end-members, such as Haynesina germanica. Along the sedimentary record, the interaction between meiofaunal and geochemical elements made it possible to distinguish between a pre-impacted period and an industrial period. The upper part of the core reflects better ecological conditions, indicating an environmental recovery. Our results provide baselines for future environmental bio-monitoring in the area. PMID:27074196

  17. Gliadin fragments and a specific gliadin 33-mer peptide close KATP channels and induce insulin secretion in INS-1E cells and rat islets of langerhans.

    PubMed

    Dall, Morten; Calloe, Kirstine; Haupt-Jorgensen, Martin; Larsen, Jesper; Schmitt, Nicole; Josefsen, Knud; Buschard, Karsten

    2013-01-01

    In non-obese diabetic (NOD) mice, diabetes incidence is reduced by a gluten-free diet. Gluten peptides, such as the compound gliadin, can cross the intestinal barrier and may directly affect pancreatic beta cells. We investigated the effects of enzymatically-digested gliadin in NOD mice, INS-1E cells and rat islets. Six injections of gliadin digest in 6-week-old NOD mice did not affect diabetes development, but increased weight gain (20% increase by day 100). In INS-1E cells, incubation with gliadin digest induced a dose-dependent increase in insulin secretion, up to 2.5-fold after 24 hours. A similar effect was observed in isolated rat islets (1.6-fold increase). In INS-1E cells, diazoxide reduced the stimulatory effect of gliadin digest. Additionally, gliadin digest was shown to decrease current through KATP-channels. A specific gliadin 33-mer had a similar effect, both on current and insulin secretion. Finally, INS-1E incubation with gliadin digest potentiated palmitate-induced insulin secretion by 13% compared to controls. Our data suggest that gliadin fragments may contribute to the beta-cell hyperactivity observed prior to the development of type 1 diabetes. PMID:23785500

  18. Genome wide identification of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans (ATCC 23270) transcription factors and comparative analysis of ArsR and MerR metal regulators.

    PubMed

    Hödar, Christian; Moreno, Pablo; di Genova, Alex; Latorre, Mauricio; Reyes-Jara, Angélica; Maass, Alejandro; González, Mauricio; Cambiazo, Verónica

    2012-02-01

    Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans is a chemolithoautotrophic acidophilic bacterium that obtains its energy from the oxidation of ferrous iron, elemental sulfur, or reduced sulfur minerals. This capability makes it of great industrial importance due to its applications in biomining. During the industrial processes, A. ferrooxidans survives to stressing circumstances in its environment, such as an extremely acidic pH and high concentration of transition metals. In order to gain insight into the organization of A. ferrooxidans regulatory networks and to provide a framework for further studies in bacterial growth under extreme conditions, we applied a genome-wide annotation procedure to identify 87 A. ferrooxidans transcription factors. We classified them into 19 families that were conserved among diverse prokaryotic phyla. Our annotation procedure revealed that A. ferrooxidans genome contains several members of the ArsR and MerR families, which are involved in metal resistance and detoxification. Analysis of their sequences revealed known and potentially new mechanism to coordinate gene-expression in response to metal availability. A. ferrooxidans inhabit some of the most metal-rich environments known, thus transcription factors identified here seem to be good candidates for functional studies in order to determine their physiological roles and to place them into A. ferrooxidans transcriptional regulatory networks. PMID:21830017

  19. Increased neurotrophic factor levels in ventral mesencephalic cultures do not explain the protective effect of osteopontin and the synthetic 15-mer RGD domain against MPP+ toxicity.

    PubMed

    Broom, Lauren; Jenner, Peter; Rose, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    The synthetic 15-mer arginine-glycine-aspartic acid (RGD) domain of osteopontin (OPN) is protective in vitro and in vivo against dopaminergic cell death and this protective effect may be mediated through interaction with integrin receptors to regulate neurotrophic factor levels. We now examine this concept in rat primary ventral mesencephalic (VM) cultures. 1-Methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) exposure reduced tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive cell number and activated glial cells as shown by increased glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), oxycocin-42 (OX-42) and ectodermal dysplasia 1 (ED-1) immunoreactivity. Both OPN and the RGD domain of OPN were equally protective against MPP+ toxicity in VM cultures and both increased glial-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels. The effects of OPN and the RGD domain were accompanied by a decrease in numbers of activated microglia but with no change in astrocyte number. However, full-length OPN and the RGD domain of OPN remained protective against MPP+ toxicity in the presence of a GDNF neutralising antibody. This suggests that increased GDNF levels do not underlie the protective effect observed with OPN. Rather, OPN's protective effect may be mediated through decreased glial cell activation. PMID:25218309

  20. Ruthenium complexes as nitric oxide donors and scavengers. Synthesis and crystal and molecular structure for mer,trans-[RuIICl3(NO+)(N-4-ethylisonicotinate)2], and mer,trans-[RuIIICl3(N-CH3CN)(N-4-ethylisonicotinate)2] as obtained via UV-photochemical activation of {RuII(NO+)}3+-core parent complex in acetonitrile solution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tamasi, Gabriella; Cini, Renzo

    2013-09-01

    The synthesis of mer,trans-[RuIICl3(NO+)(EINT)2] (EINT = N-4-ethylisonicotinate), 1, was achieved by carefully working under ultrapure nitrogen atmosphere, by mixing RuIIICl3(NO)·H2O and EINT (1:2 M ratio in anhydrous ethanol) under stirring and at reflux conditions. Single crystals of 1 suitable for X-ray diffraction XRD techniques were also obtained by slow evaporation of solvent under nitrogen from the mother alcoholic solution. The IR spectrum of the solid (KBr matrixes) showed the characteristic sharp and intense band (1866 cm-1) relevant to the N-O stretching vibration for the nitrosyl ligand (RuIINO+ core). Then, on irradiating at 25 °C a solution of 1 in ultrapure acetonitrile (contained in quartz cuvette) under an UV source (250 throughout 366 nm) a color turning from pink to yellow occurred. After a prolonged irradiation (250 nm for at least 6 h) the cuvette (yellow solution) was stored in a dry nitrogen atmosphere and allowed to slowly concentrate via spontaneous solvent evaporation. The solution produced brown crystals as parallelepipeds, suitable for XRD data collection, that belong to the monoclinic system, C2/c space group, and the molecular structure (mer,trans-[RuIICl3(N-NCCH3)(EINT)2], 2) consists of complex molecules that are mostly paired via stacking interactions that involve the pyridine moiety and through (ethyl)CH3⋯Cl(Ru), (pyridine)CH⋯Cl(Ru) and (ethyl)CH3⋯O(C) hydrogen bond type interactions. The crystals of the parent nitrosyl complex belong to the orthorhombic Pccn space group and the complex molecule has three chlorido ligands in the equatorial positions and two EINT ligands in the axial positions. The nitrosyl ligand occupy two positions that are trans to each other and have half occupancy each.

  1. Evidence for higher-order structure formation by the c-myb 18-mer phosphorothioate antisense (codons 2-7) oligodeoxynucleotide: potential relationship to antisense c-myb inhibition.

    PubMed

    Vilenchik, M; Benimetsky, L; Kolbanovsky, A; Miller, P; Stein, C A

    2001-04-01

    We have demonstrated the formation of higher-order structures (presumably tetraplexes) by an 18-mer phosphorothioate antisense c-myb oligodeoxyribonucleotide that has been shown to have activity in the treatment of leukemia xenograft models. Although not observable by conventionally employed techniques, such as PAGE and dimethyl sulfate (DMS) protection, the formation of such higher-order structures by this oligonucleotide was revealed by several techniques. These included capillary gel electrophoresis (CGE), which demonstrated the presence of molecules with greatly increased retention time compared with the monomer; magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopy, which demonstrated a band at 290 nm, a characteristic of antiparallel tetraplexes; and fluorescence energy transfer measurements. For the last, the 18-mer phosphorothioate oligonucleotide was synthesized with a 5'-fluorescein group. Similar to the molecular beacon model, its fluorescence was quenched when combined in solution with tetraplex-forming oligomers that contained a 3'-Dabcyl moiety. 7-Deazaguanosine inhibits the formation of tetraplexes by eliminated Hoogsteen base pair interactions. The wild-type and 7-deazaguanosine-substituted antisense c-myb oligomers differentially downregulated the expression of the c-myb proto-oncogene in K562 and HL60 cells, with the wild-type oligomer being the least active. The 18-mer c-myb molecule can, therefore, form highly complex structures, whose analysis in solution cannot be limited to examination of slab gel electrophoresis results alone. PMID:11334144

  2. Glycopeptide Antibiotics Potently Inhibit Cathepsin L in the Late Endosome/Lysosome and Block the Entry of Ebola Virus, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV).

    PubMed

    Zhou, Nan; Pan, Ting; Zhang, Junsong; Li, Qianwen; Zhang, Xue; Bai, Chuan; Huang, Feng; Peng, Tao; Zhang, Jianhua; Liu, Chao; Tao, Liang; Zhang, Hui

    2016-04-22

    Ebola virus infection can cause severe hemorrhagic fever with a high mortality in humans. The outbreaks of Ebola viruses in 2014 represented the most serious Ebola epidemics in history and greatly threatened public health worldwide. The development of additional effective anti-Ebola therapeutic agents is therefore quite urgent. In this study, via high throughput screening of Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs, we identified that teicoplanin, a glycopeptide antibiotic, potently prevents the entry of Ebola envelope pseudotyped viruses into the cytoplasm. Furthermore, teicoplanin also has an inhibitory effect on transcription- and replication-competent virus-like particles, with an IC50 as low as 330 nm Comparative analysis further demonstrated that teicoplanin is able to block the entry of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) envelope pseudotyped viruses as well. Teicoplanin derivatives such as dalbavancin, oritavancin, and telavancin can also inhibit the entry of Ebola, MERS, and SARS viruses. Mechanistic studies showed that teicoplanin blocks Ebola virus entry by specifically inhibiting the activity of cathepsin L, opening a novel avenue for the development of additional glycopeptides as potential inhibitors of cathepsin L-dependent viruses. Notably, given that teicoplanin has routinely been used in the clinic with low toxicity, our work provides a promising prospect for the prophylaxis and treatment of Ebola, MERS, and SARS virus infection. PMID:26953343

  3. Photochemistry in a 3D metal-organic framework (MOF): monitoring intermediates and reactivity of the fac-to-mer photoisomerization of Re(diimine)(CO)3Cl incorporated in a MOF.

    PubMed

    Easun, Timothy L; Jia, Junhua; Calladine, James A; Blackmore, Danielle L; Stapleton, Christopher S; Vuong, Khuong Q; Champness, Neil R; George, Michael W

    2014-03-01

    The mechanism and intermediates in the UV-light-initiated ligand rearrangement of fac-Re(diimine)(CO)3Cl to form the mer isomer, when incorporated into a 3D metal-organic framework (MOF), have been investigated. The structure hosting the rhenium diimine complex is a 3D network with the formula {Mn(DMF)2[LRe(CO)3Cl]}∞ (ReMn; DMF = N,N-dimethylformamide), where the diimine ligand L, 2,2'-bipyridine-5,5'-dicarboxylate, acts as a strut of the MOF. The incorporation of ReMn into a KBr disk allows spatial distribution of the mer-isomer photoproduct in the disk to be mapped and spectroscopically characterized by both Fourier transform infrared and Raman microscopy. Photoisomerization has been monitored by IR spectroscopy and proceeds via dissociation of a CO to form more than one dicarbonyl intermediate. The dicarbonyl species are stable in the solid state at 200 K. The photodissociated CO ligand appears to be trapped within the crystal lattice and, upon warming above 200 K, readily recombines with the dicarbonyl intermediates to form both the fac-Re(diimine)(CO)3Cl starting material and the mer-Re(diimine)(CO)3Cl photoproduct. Experiments over a range of temperatures (265-285 K) allow estimates of the activation enthalpy of recombination for each process of ca. 16 (±6) kJ mol(-1) (mer formation) and 23 (±4) kJ mol(-1) (fac formation) within the MOF. We have compared the photochemistry of the ReMn MOF with a related alkane-soluble Re(dnb)(CO)3Cl complex (dnb = 4,4'-dinonyl-2,2'-bipyridine). Time-resolved IR measurements clearly show that, in an alkane solution, the photoinduced dicarbonyl species again recombines with CO to both re-form the fac-isomer starting material and form the mer-isomer photoproduct. Density functional theory calculations of the possible dicarbonyl species aids the assignment of the experimental data in that the ν(CO) IR bands of the CO loss intermediate are, as expected, shifted to lower energy when the metal is bound to DMF rather than to an

  4. Assessment by regional modelling of the impact of monopile foundations on the hydrodynamics and sediment transport: case of Courseulles-sur-Mer (France) wind farm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rivier, Aurélie; Bennis, Anne-Claire; Pinon, Grégory; Magar, Vanesa; Gross, Markus

    2015-04-01

    Offshore monopile foundations of wind turbines modify hydrodynamics and sediment transport at local scale and also at regional scale. The aim of this work is to assess these changes and to parametrize them in a regional model. These modifications were previously evaluated using the regional circulation model MARS3D (Lazure and Dumas, 2008) in tests-cases (Rivier et al., 2014) using two approaches: in the first approach, monopiles are explicitly modelled in the mesh as dry cells and in the second approach a sub-grid parametrization which considers the drag force exerted by a monopile on the flow is used. The sub-grid parametrization is improved close to the bed in this paper by adding a drag force term in the momentum equations, source terms in the turbulence model and by increasing the bed shear stress at monopile location. Changes in hydrodynamics regime, especially near-bed, affect sediment transport regime and modifications due to monopiles on sediment dynamics is also investigated using the MARS3D sediment transport module (Le Hir et al., 2011) which solves the advection-diffusion equations. Test-cases are run using hydrodynamical conditions and sediment grain sizes typical from the area located off Courseulles-sur-Mer (Normandy, France) where an offshore wind farm is planned to be built. Velocity, turbulent kinetic energy and bed thickness changes due to the monopile simulated by both approaches are compared to each other and to experimental measurements made in a flume at the University of Caen or to published data (e.g. Roulund et al., 2005; Dargahi,1989). Then the model is applied in a real configuration on an area including the future offshore wind farm of Courseulles-sur-Mer. Four monopiles are represented in the model using both approaches and modifications of the hydrodynamics and sediment transport are assessed along a tidal cycle. Currents increase at the side edge of the monopile and decrease in front of and downstream the monopile. Turbulent kinetic

  5. A β-hairpin structure in a 13-mer peptide that binds α-bungarotoxin with high affinity and neutralizes its toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Scherf, Tali; Kasher, Roni; Balass, Moshe; Fridkin, Mati; Fuchs, Sara; Katchalski-Katzir, Ephraim

    2001-01-01

    Snake-venom α-bungarotoxin is a member of the α-neurotoxin family that binds with very high affinity to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) at the neuromuscular junction. The structure of the complex between α-bungarotoxin and a 13-mer peptide (WRYYESSLEPYPD) that binds the toxin with high affinity, thus inhibiting its interactions with AChR with an IC50 of 2 nM, has been solved by 1H-NMR spectroscopy. The bound peptide folds into a β-hairpin structure created by two antiparallel β-strands, which combine with the already existing triple-stranded β-sheet of the toxin to form a five-stranded intermolecular, antiparallel β-sheet. Peptide residues Y3P, E5P, and L8P have the highest intermolecular contact area, indicating their importance in the binding of α-bungarotoxin; W1P, R2P, and Y4P also contribute significantly to the binding. A large number of characteristic hydrogen bonds and electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions are observed in the complex. The high-affinity peptide exhibits inhibitory potency that is better than any known peptide derived from AChR, and is equal to that of the whole α-subunit of AChR. The high degree of sequence similarity between the peptide and various types of AChRs implies that the binding mode found within the complex might possibly mimic the receptor binding to the toxin. The design of the high-affinity peptide was based on our previous findings: (i) the detection of a lead peptide (MRYYESSLKSYPD) that binds α-bungarotoxin, using a phage-display peptide library, (ii) the information about the three-dimensional structure of α-bungarotoxin/lead-peptide complex, and (iii) the amino acid sequence analysis of different AChRs. PMID:11381118

  6. Identifying determinants of heterogeneous transmission dynamics of the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) outbreak in the Republic of Korea, 2015: a retrospective epidemiological analysis

    PubMed Central

    Nishiura, Hiroshi; Endo, Akira; Saitoh, Masaya; Kinoshita, Ryo; Ueno, Ryo; Nakaoka, Shinji; Miyamatsu, Yuichiro; Dong, Yueping; Chowell, Gerardo; Mizumoto, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the heterogeneous transmission patterns of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in the Republic of Korea, with a particular focus on epidemiological characteristics of superspreaders. Design Retrospective epidemiological analysis. Setting Multiple healthcare facilities of secondary and tertiary care centres in an urban setting. Participants A total of 185 laboratory-confirmed cases with partially known dates of illness onset and most likely sources of infection. Primary and secondary outcome measures Superspreaders were identified using the transmission tree. The reproduction number, that is, the average number of secondary cases produced by a single primary case, was estimated as a function of time and according to different types of hosts. Results A total of five superspreaders were identified. The reproduction number throughout the course of the outbreak was estimated at 1.0 due to reconstruction of the transmission tree, while the variance of secondary cases generated by a primary case was 52.1. All of the superspreaders involved in this outbreak appeared to have generated a substantial number of contacts in multiple healthcare facilities (association: p<0.01), generating on average 4.0 (0.0–8.6) and 28.6 (0.0–63.9) secondary cases among patients who visited multiple healthcare facilities and others. The time-dependent reproduction numbers declined substantially below the value of 1 on and after 13 June 2015. Conclusions Superspreaders who visited multiple facilities drove the epidemic by generating a disproportionate number of secondary cases. Our findings underscore the need to limit the contacts in healthcare settings. Contact tracing efforts could assist early laboratory testing and diagnosis of suspected cases. PMID:26908522

  7. Nutrient Addition Leads to a Weaker CO2 Sink and Higher CH4 Emissions through Vegetation-Microclimate Feedbacks at Mer Bleue Bog, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bubier, J. L.; Arnkil, S.; Humphreys, E.; Juutinen, S.; Larmola, T.; Moore, T. R.

    2015-12-01

    Atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition has led to nutrient enrichment in wetlands globally, affecting plant community composition, carbon (C) cycling, and microbial dynamics. Nutrient-limited boreal bogs are long-term sinks of carbon dioxide (CO2), but sources of methane (CH4), an important greenhouse gas. We fertilized Mer Bleue Bog, a Sphagnum moss and evergreen shrub-dominated ombrotrophic bog near Ottawa, Ontario, for 10-15 years with N as NO3 and NH4 at 5, 10 and 20 times ambient N deposition (0.6-0.8 g N m-2 y-1), with and without phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). Treatments were applied to triplicate plots (3 x 3 m) from May - August 2000-2015 and control plots received distilled water. We measured net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE), ecosystem photosynthesis and respiration, and CH4 flux with climate-controlled chambers; leaf-level CO2 exchange and biochemistry; substrate-induced respiration, CH4 production and consumption potentials with laboratory incubations; plant species composition and abundance; and microclimate (peat temperature, moisture, light interception). After 15 years, we have found that NEE has decreased, and CH4 emissions have increased, in the highest nutrient treatments owing to changes in vegetation, microtopography, and peat characteristics. Vegetation changes include a loss of Sphagnum moss and introduction of new deciduous species. Simulated atmospheric N deposition has not benefitted the photosynthetic apparatus of the dominant evergreen shrubs, but resulted in higher foliar respiration, contributing to a weaker ecosystem CO2 sink. Loss of moss has led to wetter near-surface substrate, higher rates of decomposition and CH4 emission, and a shift in microbial communities. Thus, elevated atmospheric deposition of nutrients may endanger C storage in peatlands through a complex suite of feedbacks and interactions among vegetation, microclimate, and microbial communities.

  8. Multiple Sites of the Cleavage of 21- and 25-Mer Encephalytogenic Oligopeptides Corresponding to Human Myelin Basic Protein (MBP) by Specific Anti-MBP Antibodies from Patients with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

    PubMed Central

    Timofeeva, Anna M.; Dmitrenok, Pavel S.; Konenkova, Ludmila P.; Buneva, Valentina N.; Nevinsky, Georgy A.

    2013-01-01

    IgGs from patients with multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) purified on MBP-Sepharose in contrast to canonical proteases hydrolyze effectively only myelin basic protein (MBP), but not many other tested proteins. Here we have shown for the first time that anti-MBP SLE IgGs hydrolyze nonspecific tri- and tetrapeptides with an extreme low efficiency and cannot effectively hydrolyze longer 20-mer nonspecific oligopeptides corresponding to antigenic determinants (AGDs) of HIV-1 integrase. At the same time, anti-MBP SLE IgGs efficiently hydrolyze oligopeptides corresponding to AGDs of MBP. All sites of IgG-mediated proteolysis of 21-and 25-mer encephalytogenic oligopeptides corresponding to two known AGDs of MBP were found by a combination of reverse-phase chromatography, TLC, and MALDI spectrometry. Several clustered major, moderate, and minor sites of cleavage were revealed in the case of 21- and 25-mer oligopeptides. The active sites of anti-MBP abzymes are localised on their light chains, while heavy chains are responsible for the affinity of protein substrates. Interactions of intact globular proteins with both light and heavy chains of abzymes provide high affinity to MBP and specificity of this protein hydrolysis. The affinity of anti-MBP abzymes for intact MBP is approximately 1000-fold higher than for the oligopeptides. The data suggest that all oligopeptides interact mainly with the light chains of different monoclonal abzymes of total pool of IgGs, which possesses a lower affinity for substrates, and therefore, depending on the oligopeptide sequences, their hydrolysis may be less specific than globular protein and can occur in several sites. PMID:23520443

  9. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

    MedlinePlus

    ... has also been reported in: Algeria Austria China Egypt France Greece Italy Malaysia Netherlands Philippines Republic of ... with cancer People with a terminal illness Pregnant women Children, 12 years of age and younger For ...

  10. Statistical properties and time-frequency analysis of temperature, salinity and turbidity measured by the MAREL Carnot station in the coastal waters of Boulogne-sur-Mer (France)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kbaier Ben Ismail, Dhouha; Lazure, Pascal; Puillat, Ingrid

    2016-10-01

    In marine sciences, many fields display high variability over a large range of spatial and temporal scales, from seconds to thousands of years. The longer recorded time series, with an increasing sampling frequency, in this field are often nonlinear, nonstationary, multiscale and noisy. Their analysis faces new challenges and thus requires the implementation of adequate and specific methods. The objective of this paper is to highlight time series analysis methods already applied in econometrics, signal processing, health, etc. to the environmental marine domain, assess advantages and inconvenients and compare classical techniques with more recent ones. Temperature, turbidity and salinity are important quantities for ecosystem studies. The authors here consider the fluctuations of sea level, salinity, turbidity and temperature recorded from the MAREL Carnot system of Boulogne-sur-Mer (France), which is a moored buoy equipped with physico-chemical measuring devices, working in continuous and autonomous conditions. In order to perform adequate statistical and spectral analyses, it is necessary to know the nature of the considered time series. For this purpose, the stationarity of the series and the occurrence of unit-root are addressed with the Augmented-Dickey Fuller tests. As an example, the harmonic analysis is not relevant for temperature, turbidity and salinity due to the nonstationary condition, except for the nearly stationary sea level datasets. In order to consider the dominant frequencies associated to the dynamics, the large number of data provided by the sensors should enable the estimation of Fourier spectral analysis. Different power spectra show a complex variability and reveal an influence of environmental factors such as tides. However, the previous classical spectral analysis, namely the Blackman-Tukey method, requires not only linear and stationary data but also evenly-spaced data. Interpolating the time series introduces numerous artifacts to the

  11. Synthesis, structure, luminescence, and magnetic properties of a single-ion magnet "mer"-[tris(N-[(imidazol-4-yl)-methylidene]-DL-phenylalaninato)terbium(III) and related "fac"-DL-alaninato derivative.

    PubMed

    Yamauchi, Suguru; Fujinami, Takeshi; Matsumoto, Naohide; Mochida, Naotaka; Ishida, Takayuki; Sunatsuki, Yukinari; Watanabe, Masayuki; Tsuchimoto, Masanobu; Coletti, Cecilia; Re, Nazzareno

    2014-06-16

    Two Tb(III) complexes with the same N6O3 donor atoms but different coordination geometries, "fac"-[Tb(III)(HL(DL-ala))3]·7H2O (1) and "mer"-[Tb(III)(HL(DL-phe))3]·7H2O (2), were synthesized, where H2L(DL-ala) and H2L(DL-phe) are N-[(imidazol-4-yl)methylidene]-DL-alanine and -DL-phenylalanine, respectively. Each Tb(III) ion is coordinated by three electronically mononegative NNO tridentate ligands to form a coordination geometry of a tricapped trigonal prism. Compound 1 consists of enantiomers "fac"-[Tb(III)(HL(D-ala))3] and "fac"-[Tb(III)(HL(L-ala))3], while 2 consists of "mer"-[Tb(III)(HL(D-phe))2(HL(L-phe))] and "mer"-[Tb(III)(HL(D-phe))(HL(L-phe))2]. Magnetic data were analyzed by a spin Hamiltonian including the crystal field effect on the Tb(III) ion (4f(8), J = 6, S = 3, L = 3, gJ = 3/2, (7)F6). The Stark splitting of the ground state (7)F6 was evaluated from magnetic analysis, and the energy diagram pattern indicated easy-plane and easy-axis (Ising type) magnetic anisotropies for 1 and 2, respectively. Highly efficient luminescences with Φ = 0.50 and 0.61 for 1 and 2, respectively, were observed, and the luminescence fine structure due to the (5)D4 → (7)F6 transition is in good accordance with the energy diagram determined from magnetic analysis. The energy diagram of 1 shows an approximate single-well potential curve, whereas that of 2 shows a double- or quadruple-well potential within the (7)F6 multiplets. Complex 2 displayed an onset of the out-of-phase signal in alternating current (ac) susceptibility at a direct current bias field of 1000 Oe on cooling down to 1.9 K. A slight frequency dependence was recorded around 2 K. On the other hand, 1 did not show any meaningful out-of-phase ac susceptibility. Pulsed-field magnetizations of 1 and 2 were measured below 1.6 K, and only 2 exhibited magnetic hysteresis. This finding agrees well with the energy diagram pattern from crystal field calculation on 1 and 2. DFT calculation allowed us to estimate the

  12. Isolation and Characterization of Dromedary Camel Coronavirus UAE-HKU23 from Dromedaries of the Middle East: Minimal Serological Cross-Reactivity between MERS Coronavirus and Dromedary Camel Coronavirus UAE-HKU23

    PubMed Central

    Woo, Patrick C. Y.; Lau, Susanna K. P.; Fan, Rachel Y. Y.; Lau, Candy C. Y.; Wong, Emily Y. M.; Joseph, Sunitha; Tsang, Alan K. L.; Wernery, Renate; Yip, Cyril C. Y.; Tsang, Chi-Ching; Wernery, Ulrich; Yuen, Kwok-Yung

    2016-01-01

    Recently, we reported the discovery of a dromedary camel coronavirus UAE-HKU23 (DcCoV UAE-HKU23) from dromedaries in the Middle East. In this study, DcCoV UAE-HKU23 was successfully isolated in two of the 14 dromedary fecal samples using HRT-18G cells, with cytopathic effects observed five days after inoculation. Northern blot analysis revealed at least seven distinct RNA species, corresponding to predicted subgenomic mRNAs and confirming the core sequence of transcription regulatory sequence motifs as 5′-UCUAAAC-3′ as we predicted previously. Antibodies against DcCoV UAE-HKU23 were detected in 58 (98.3%) and 59 (100%) of the 59 dromedary sera by immunofluorescence and neutralization antibody tests, respectively. There was significant correlation between the antibody titers determined by immunofluorescence and neutralization assays (Pearson coefficient = 0.525, p < 0.0001). Immunization of mice using recombinant N proteins of DcCoV UAE-HKU23 and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), respectively, and heat-inactivated DcCoV UAE-HKU23 showed minimal cross-antigenicity between DcCoV UAE-HKU23 and MERS-CoV by Western blot and neutralization antibody assays. Codon usage and genetic distance analysis of RdRp, S and N genes showed that the 14 strains of DcCoV UAE-HKU23 formed a distinct cluster, separated from those of other closely related members of Betacoronavirus 1, including alpaca CoV, confirming that DcCoV UAE-HKU23 is a novel member of Betacoronavirus 1. PMID:27164099

  13. Isolation and Characterization of Dromedary Camel Coronavirus UAE-HKU23 from Dromedaries of the Middle East: Minimal Serological Cross-Reactivity between MERS Coronavirus and Dromedary Camel Coronavirus UAE-HKU23.

    PubMed

    Woo, Patrick C Y; Lau, Susanna K P; Fan, Rachel Y Y; Lau, Candy C Y; Wong, Emily Y M; Joseph, Sunitha; Tsang, Alan K L; Wernery, Renate; Yip, Cyril C Y; Tsang, Chi-Ching; Wernery, Ulrich; Yuen, Kwok-Yung

    2016-01-01

    Recently, we reported the discovery of a dromedary camel coronavirus UAE-HKU23 (DcCoV UAE-HKU23) from dromedaries in the Middle East. In this study, DcCoV UAE-HKU23 was successfully isolated in two of the 14 dromedary fecal samples using HRT-18G cells, with cytopathic effects observed five days after inoculation. Northern blot analysis revealed at least seven distinct RNA species, corresponding to predicted subgenomic mRNAs and confirming the core sequence of transcription regulatory sequence motifs as 5'-UCUAAAC-3' as we predicted previously. Antibodies against DcCoV UAE-HKU23 were detected in 58 (98.3%) and 59 (100%) of the 59 dromedary sera by immunofluorescence and neutralization antibody tests, respectively. There was significant correlation between the antibody titers determined by immunofluorescence and neutralization assays (Pearson coefficient = 0.525, p < 0.0001). Immunization of mice using recombinant N proteins of DcCoV UAE-HKU23 and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), respectively, and heat-inactivated DcCoV UAE-HKU23 showed minimal cross-antigenicity between DcCoV UAE-HKU23 and MERS-CoV by Western blot and neutralization antibody assays. Codon usage and genetic distance analysis of RdRp, S and N genes showed that the 14 strains of DcCoV UAE-HKU23 formed a distinct cluster, separated from those of other closely related members of Betacoronavirus 1, including alpaca CoV, confirming that DcCoV UAE-HKU23 is a novel member of Betacoronavirus 1. PMID:27164099

  14. X-ray Structure of a Hg2+ Complex of Mercuric Reductase (MerA) and Quantum Mechanical/Molecular Mechanical Study of Hg2+ Transfer between the C-Terminal and Buried Catalytic Site Cysteine Pairs

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Mercuric reductase, MerA, is a key enzyme in bacterial mercury resistance. This homodimeric enzyme captures and reduces toxic Hg2+ to Hg0, which is relatively unreactive and can exit the cell passively. Prior to reduction, the Hg2+ is transferred from a pair of cysteines (C558′ and C559′ using Tn501 numbering) at the C-terminus of one monomer to another pair of cysteines (C136 and C141) in the catalytic site of the other monomer. Here, we present the X-ray structure of the C-terminal Hg2+ complex of the C136A/C141A double mutant of the Tn501 MerA catalytic core and explore the molecular mechanism of this Hg transfer with quantum mechanical/molecular mechanical (QM/MM) calculations. The transfer is found to be nearly thermoneutral and to pass through a stable tricoordinated intermediate that is marginally less stable than the two end states. For the overall process, Hg2+ is always paired with at least two thiolates and thus is present at both the C-terminal and catalytic binding sites as a neutral complex. Prior to Hg2+ transfer, C141 is negatively charged. As Hg2+ is transferred into the catalytic site, a proton is transferred from C136 to C559′ while C558′ becomes negatively charged, resulting in the net transfer of a negative charge over a distance of ∼7.5 Å. Thus, the transport of this soft divalent cation is made energetically feasible by pairing a competition between multiple Cys thiols and/or thiolates for Hg2+ with a competition between the Hg2+ and protons for the thiolates. PMID:25343681

  15. Carbonyl derivatives of chloride-dimethyl sulfoxide-ruthenium(III) complexes: Synthesis, crystal structure, and reactivity of [(DMSO){sub 2}H][trans-RuCl{sub 4}(DMSO)(CO)] and mer,cis-RuCl{sub 3}(DMSO){sub 2}(CO)

    SciTech Connect

    Alessio, E.; Bolle, M.; Milani, B.

    1995-09-13

    [(DMSO){sub 2}{sub 2}H][trans-RuCl{sub 4}(DMSO){sub 2}] (1) and mer,trans-RuCl{sub 3}(DMSO){sub 2}(DMSO) (2) (DMSO = S-bonded dimethyl sulfoxide; DMSO = O-bonded dimethyl sulfoxide; DMSO = O bonded dimethyl sulfoxide) react with carbon monoxide at room temperature and atmospheric pressure to give [(DMSO){sub 2}H][trans-RuCl{sub 4}(DMSO)(CO)] (3) and mer,cis-RuCl{sub 3}(DMSO){sub 2-} (CO) (4), respectively. Coordination of carbon monoxide induces the S to O linkage iosmerization of the DMSO ligand trans to it. Compounds 3 and 4 represent the first example of Ru-(III) chloride-DMSO-carbonyl complexes. In both 3 and 4 the DMSO ligand trans to CO is weakly bonded and easily replaced by a nitrogen donor ligand.

  16. Unique Ground-Truthing of a Shergottitic Lithology as a Potential Orbital End-Member Provided by Mini-TES/MER and Laboratory TIR Data of Terrestrial Shocked Basalt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wright, S.; Christensen, P.; Wyatt, M.

    2008-12-01

    The majority of the equatorial regions of Mars are basaltic sands labeled Surface Type 1 (ST1). This MGS TES orbital thermal infrared (TIR) end-member is often compared to laboratory TIR data of Deccan Trap flood basalt from central India. Although subtle spectral differences exist (to be shown), the two likely have similar abundances and composition of labradorite and clinopyroxenes augite and pigeonite. This has been confirmed by recent works utilizing Mini-TES data of Meridiani sands and Gusev soils (both ST1) along with data from other MER instruments. Further, the TIR spectrum of Deccan basalt from Lonar Crater, India that was shocked 20-40 GPa is an exact match to the TIR spectrum of the Los Angeles shergottite in that both contain 45% maskelynite and 35% augite/pigeonite. This strengthens the comparison of ST1 to Deccan basalt and suggests that Los Angeles was ST1 bedrock before ejection. However, the TIR spectrum of ST1 and Deccan basalt both differ from the laboratory spectra of most basaltic shergottites, which contain more clinopyroxene than plagioclase. Further, the shergottites contain shattered clinopyroxenes and maskelynite, or plagioclase feldspar shock compressed to a diaplectic glass of plagioclase composition, that was created in the impact event that launched them from Mars. Presumably, the original basaltic bedrock from which shergottites originated contain the original plagioclase feldspar and unshattered clinopyroxenes. Whereas there exists evidence for olivine and orthopyroxene on Mars, large occurrences of these CPX-rich shergottites (not to be confused with pyroxenites or Nakhlites) have not been located using a laboratory TIR spectrum as an orbital end-member. However, one particular MER-B target named Bounce Rock has APXS and Mössbauer spectra similar to some shergottites such as Zagami. Mineral abundances resulting from the deconvolution of the Mini-TES spectrum of Bounce Rock, where the effects of dust have been removed, are similar

  17. Fluoride-bridged {Ln2Cr2} polynuclear complexes from semi-labile mer-[CrF3(py)3] and [Ln(hfac)3(H2O)2].

    PubMed

    Thuesen, Christian Aa; Pedersen, Kasper S; Schau-Magnussen, Magnus; Evangelisti, Marco; Vibenholt, Johan; Piligkos, Stergios; Weihe, Høgni; Bendix, Jesper

    2012-10-01

    The trifluorido complex mer-[CrF(3)(py)(3)] (py = pyridine) reacts with 1 equiv. of [Ln(hfac)(3)(H(2)O)(2)] and depending on the solvent forms the tetranuclear clusters [Cr(2)Ln(2)(μ-F)(4)(μ-OH)(2)(py)(4)(hfac)(6)], 1Ln, and [Cr(2)Ln(2)(μ-F)(4)F(2)(py)(6)(hfac)(6)], 2Ln, in acetonitrile and 1,2-dichloroethane, respectively (Ln = Y, Gd, Tb, Dy, Ho, and Er; hfacH = 1,1,1,5,5,5-hexafluoroacetylacetone). Reaction with [Dy(hfac)(3)(H(2)O)(2)] in dichloromethane produces the dinuclear cluster [CrDy(μ-F)F(OH(2))(py)(3)(hfac)(4)], 3Dy. All the clusters feature fluoride bridges between the chromium(III) and lanthanide(III) centres. Fits of susceptibility data for 1Gd and 2Gd reveal the fluoride-mediated chromium(III)-lanthanide(III) exchange interactions to be 0.43(5) cm(-1) and 0.57(7) cm(-1), respectively (in the Ĥ = JŜ1· Ŝ2 convention). Heat capacity measurements on 2Gd reveal a moderate magneto-caloric effect (MCE) reaching -ΔS(m)(T) = 11.4 J kg(-1) K(-1) for ΔB(0) = 9 T → 0 T at T = 4.1 K. Out-of-phase alternating-current susceptibility (χ'') signals are observed for 1Dy, 2Dy and 2Tb, demonstrating slow relaxation of the magnetization. PMID:22878363

  18. Influence of in vitro IL-2 or IL-15 alone or in combination with Hsp-70-derived 14-mer peptide (TKD) on the expression of NK cell activatory and inhibitory receptors.

    PubMed

    Hromadnikova, Ilona; Pirkova, Petra; Sedlackova, Lucie

    2013-01-01

    NK cells represent a potential tool for adoptive immunotherapy against tumors. Membrane-bound Hsp70 acts as a tumor-specific marker enhancing NK cell activity. Using flow cytometry the effect of in vitro stimulation with IL-2 or IL-15 alone or in combination with Hsp70-derived 14-mer peptide (TKD) on cell surface expression of NK activatory receptors (CD16, NKG2D, NKG2C, NKp46, NKp44, NKp30, KIR2DL4, DNAM-1, and LAMP1) and NK inhibitory receptors (NKG2A, KIR2DL2/L3, LIR1/ILT-2, and NKR-P1A) in healthy individuals was studied. Results were expressed as the percentage of receptor expressing cells and the amount of receptor expressed by CD3(-)CD56(+) cellular population. CD94, NKG2D, NKp44, NKp30, KIR2DL4, DNAM-1, LAMP1, NKG2A, and NKR-P1A were upregulated after the stimulation with IL-2 or IL-15 alone or in combination with TKD. KIR2DL2/L3 was upregulated only by IL-15 and IL-15/TKD. Concurrently, an increase in a number of NK cells positive for CD94, NKp44, NKp30, KIR2DL4, and LAMP1 was observed. IL-15 and IL-15/TKD caused also cell number rise positive for KIR2DL2/L3 and NKR-P1A. Cell number positive for NKG2C and NKG2A was increased only by IL-2 and IL-2/TKD. The diverse effect of IL-2 or IL-15 w or w/o TKD on cell surface expression was observed in CD16, NKp46, and LIR1/ILT-2. PMID:23476104

  19. The bldC Developmental Locus of Streptomyces coelicolor Encodes a Member of a Family of Small DNA-Binding Proteins Related to the DNA-Binding Domains of the MerR Family

    PubMed Central

    Hunt, Alison C.; Servín-González, Luis; Kelemen, Gabriella H.; Buttner, Mark J.

    2005-01-01

    The bldC locus, required for formation of aerial hyphae in Streptomyces coelicolor, was localized by map-based cloning to the overlap between cosmids D17 and D25 of a minimal ordered library. Subcloning and sequencing showed that bldC encodes a member of a previously unrecognized family of small (58- to 78-residue) DNA-binding proteins, related to the DNA-binding domains of the MerR family of transcriptional activators. BldC family members are found in a wide range of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. Constructed ΔbldC mutants were defective in differentiation and antibiotic production. They failed to form an aerial mycelium on minimal medium and showed severe delays in aerial mycelium formation on rich medium. In addition, they failed to produce the polyketide antibiotic actinorhodin, and bldC was shown to be required for normal and sustained transcription of the pathway-specific activator gene actII-orf4. Although ΔbldC mutants produced the tripyrrole antibiotic undecylprodigiosin, transcripts of the pathway-specific activator gene (redD) were reduced to almost undetectable levels after 48 h in the bldC mutant, in contrast to the bldC+ parent strain in which redD transcription continued during aerial mycelium formation and sporulation. This suggests that bldC may be required for maintenance of redD transcription during differentiation. bldC is expressed from a single promoter. S1 nuclease protection assays and immunoblotting showed that bldC is constitutively expressed and that transcription of bldC does not depend on any of the other known bld genes. The bldC18 mutation that originally defined the locus causes a Y49C substitution that results in instability of the protein. PMID:15629942

  20. Travelers' Health: MERS in the Arabian Peninsula

    MedlinePlus

    ... Share Compartir Warning - Level 3, Avoid Nonessential Travel Alert - Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions Watch - Level 1, ... overseas. Clinician Information: Health care providers should be alert to patients who develop fever and symptoms of ...

  1. MERS in the U.S.

    MedlinePlus

    ... measures to prevent disease spread Provided guidance for flight crews, Emergency Medical Service (EMS) units at airports, ... began feeling unwell on May 1 during the flight from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia to London and continued ...

  2. Water 16-mers and hexamers: assessment of the three-body and electrostatically embedded many-body approximations of the correlation energy or the nonlocal energy as ways to include cooperative effects.

    PubMed

    Qi, Helena W; Leverentz, Hannah R; Truhlar, Donald G

    2013-05-30

    This work presents a new fragment method, the electrostatically embedded many-body expansion of the nonlocal energy (EE-MB-NE), and shows that it, along with the previously proposed electrostatically embedded many-body expansion of the correlation energy (EE-MB-CE), produces accurate results for large systems at the level of CCSD(T) coupled cluster theory. We primarily study water 16-mers, but we also test the EE-MB-CE method on water hexamers. We analyze the distributions of two-body and three-body terms to show why the many-body expansion of the electrostatically embedded correlation energy converges faster than the many-body expansion of the entire electrostatically embedded interaction potential. The average magnitude of the dimer contributions to the pairwise additive (PA) term of the correlation energy (which neglects cooperative effects) is only one-half of that of the average dimer contribution to the PA term of the expansion of the total energy; this explains why the mean unsigned error (MUE) of the EE-PA-CE approximation is only one-half of that of the EE-PA approximation. Similarly, the average magnitude of the trimer contributions to the three-body (3B) term of the EE-3B-CE approximation is only one-fourth of that of the EE-3B approximation, and the MUE of the EE-3B-CE approximation is one-fourth that of the EE-3B approximation. Finally, we test the efficacy of two- and three-body density functional corrections. One such density functional correction method, the new EE-PA-NE method, with the OLYP or the OHLYP density functional (where the OHLYP functional is the OptX exchange functional combined with the LYP correlation functional multiplied by 0.5), has the best performance-to-price ratio of any method whose computational cost scales as the third power of the number of monomers and is competitive in accuracy in the tests presented here with even the electrostatically embedded three-body approximation. PMID:23627665

  3. Undercut Rocks at the MER Gusev Landing Site

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2004-01-01

    On January 3 2004, the NASA Spirit rover landed on the plains inside the Gusev Crater in the southern hemisphere of Mars, and has made observations of the landing site and nearby region in visual and infrared wavelengths, as well as making in-situ measurements of rocks and soil. A number of rocks at the Gusev site are perched, with a significant undercut above the surface; additional rocks show a feature of being eroded or etched at a height of one to three centimeters immediately above the soil line. Some rocks also show terracing, and others show a two-tone pattern of albedo, with a distinct dividing line between a lighter area near the surface and a darker color above the surface. In a small number of cases, the dividing line is correlated with a visible horizontal groove in the rock, most likely indicating an earlier location of burial of the rock. A number of explanations for this undercutting are possible. Perched rocks can be placed on the surface by deflation of the soil from underneath the rock. The surface etching may be abrasion due to reptation. Reptation, or surface creep, occurs as sand moves without leaving the surface, as small (100-200 micron particles) moved by saltation set larger particles in motion. These large particles are effective at abrading the rocks at the surface level. The structure of "ripple" features at the site is evidence to support reptation at the Gusev site. An alternate explanation is etching at the surface by chemically active grit.

  4. Antibody Response and Disease Severity in Healthcare Worker MERS Survivors.

    PubMed

    Alshukairi, Abeer N; Khalid, Imran; Ahmed, Waleed A; Dada, Ashraf M; Bayumi, Daniyah T; Malic, Laut S; Althawadi, Sahar; Ignacio, Kim; Alsalmi, Hanadi S; Al-Abdely, Hail M; Wali, Ghassan Y; Qushmaq, Ismael A; Alraddadi, Basem M; Perlman, Stanley

    2016-06-01

    We studied antibody response in 9 healthcare workers in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, who survived Middle East respiratory syndrome, by using serial ELISA and indirect immunofluorescence assay testing. Among patients who had experienced severe pneumonia, antibody was detected for >18 months after infection. Antibody longevity was more variable in patients who had experienced milder disease. PMID:27192543

  5. Discovery of 12-mer peptides that bind to wood lignin

    PubMed Central

    Yamaguchi, Asako; Isozaki, Katsuhiro; Nakamura, Masaharu; Takaya, Hikaru; Watanabe, Takashi

    2016-01-01

    Lignin, an abundant terrestrial polymer, is the only large-volume renewable feedstock composed of an aromatic skeleton. Lignin has been used mostly as an energy source during paper production; however, recent interest in replacing fossil fuels with renewable resources has highlighted its potential value in providing aromatic chemicals. Highly selective degradation of lignin is pivotal for industrial production of paper, biofuels, chemicals, and materials. However, few studies have examined natural and synthetic molecular components recognizing the heterogeneous aromatic polymer. Here, we report the first identification of lignin-binding peptides possessing characteristic sequences using a phage display technique. The consensus sequence HFPSP was found in several lignin-binding peptides, and the outer amino acid sequence affected the binding affinity of the peptides. Substitution of phenylalanine7 with Ile in the lignin-binding peptide C416 (HFPSPIFQRHSH) decreased the affinity of the peptide for softwood lignin without changing its affinity for hardwood lignin, indicating that C416 recognised structural differences between the lignins. Circular dichroism spectroscopy demonstrated that this peptide adopted a highly flexible random coil structure, allowing key residues to be appropriately arranged in relation to the binding site in lignin. These results provide a useful platform for designing synthetic and biological catalysts selectively bind to lignin. PMID:26903196

  6. Strategic Analysis for the MER Cape Verde Approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaines, Daniel; Belluta, Paolo; Herman, Jennifer; Hwang, Pauline; Mukai, Ryan; Porter, Dan; Jones, Byron; Wood, Eric; Grotzinger, John; Edgar, Lauren; Hayes, Alex; Hare, Trent; Squyres, Steve

    2009-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has recently completed a two year campaign studying Victoria Crater. The campaign culminated in a close approach of Cape Verde in order to acquire high resolution imagery of the exposed stratigraphy in the cliff face. The close approach to Cape Verde provided significant challenges for every subsystem of the rover as the rover needed to traverse difficult, uncharacterised terrain and approach a cliff face with the potential of blocking out solar energy and communications with Earth. In this paper we describe the strategic analyses performed by the science and engineering teams so that we could successfully achieve the science objectives while keeping the rover safe.

  7. Antibody Response and Disease Severity in Healthcare Worker MERS Survivors

    PubMed Central

    Khalid, Imran; Ahmed, Waleed A.; Dada, Ashraf M.; Bayumi, Daniyah T.; Malic, Laut S.; Althawadi, Sahar; Ignacio, Kim; Alsalmi, Hanadi S.; Al-Abdely, Hail M.; Wali, Ghassan Y.; Qushmaq, Ismael A.; Alraddadi, Basem M.; Perlman, Stanley

    2016-01-01

    We studied antibody response in 9 healthcare workers in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, who survived Middle East respiratory syndrome, by using serial ELISA and indirect immunofluorescence assay testing. Among patients who had experienced severe pneumonia, antibody was detected for >18 months after infection. Antibody longevity was more variable in patients who had experienced milder disease. PMID:27192543

  8. Discovery of 12-mer peptides that bind to wood lignin.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Asako; Isozaki, Katsuhiro; Nakamura, Masaharu; Takaya, Hikaru; Watanabe, Takashi

    2016-01-01

    Lignin, an abundant terrestrial polymer, is the only large-volume renewable feedstock composed of an aromatic skeleton. Lignin has been used mostly as an energy source during paper production; however, recent interest in replacing fossil fuels with renewable resources has highlighted its potential value in providing aromatic chemicals. Highly selective degradation of lignin is pivotal for industrial production of paper, biofuels, chemicals, and materials. However, few studies have examined natural and synthetic molecular components recognizing the heterogeneous aromatic polymer. Here, we report the first identification of lignin-binding peptides possessing characteristic sequences using a phage display technique. The consensus sequence HFPSP was found in several lignin-binding peptides, and the outer amino acid sequence affected the binding affinity of the peptides. Substitution of phenylalanine7 with Ile in the lignin-binding peptide C416 (HFPSPIFQRHSH) decreased the affinity of the peptide for softwood lignin without changing its affinity for hardwood lignin, indicating that C416 recognised structural differences between the lignins. Circular dichroism spectroscopy demonstrated that this peptide adopted a highly flexible random coil structure, allowing key residues to be appropriately arranged in relation to the binding site in lignin. These results provide a useful platform for designing synthetic and biological catalysts selectively bind to lignin. PMID:26903196

  9. Strategic analysis for the MER Cape Verde approach

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gaines, D.; Belluta, P.; Herman, J.; Hwang, P.; Mukai, R.; Porter, D.; Jones, B.; Wood, E.; Grotzinger, J.; Edgar, L.; Hayes, A.; Hare, T.; Squyres, S.

    2009-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has recently completed a two year campaign studying Victoria Crater. The campaign culminated in a close approach of Cape Verde in order to acquire high resolution imagery of the exposed stratigraphy in the cliff face. The close approach to Cape Verde provided significant challenges for every subsystem of the rover as the rover needed to traverse difficult, uncharacterised terrain and approach a cliff face with the potential of blocking out solar energy and communications with Earth. In this paper we describe the strategic analyses performed by the science and engineering teams so that we could successfully achieve the science objectives while keeping the rover safe. ??2009 IEEE.

  10. Durius Valles Outflow Basin: Proposed Site for MER-A

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nelson, D. M.; Farmer, J. D.; Greeley, R.; Kuzmin, R. O.; Klein, H. P.

    2001-01-01

    The primary goals for future landed Mars missions include: 1) the search for past or present life, and/or evidence of prebiotic chemistry, 2) understanding the planet's volatile and climatic history, and 3) determining the availability and distribution of mineral resources on Mars. Determining the history of water is essential in accomplishing all of these goals. On Earth, microbial fossilization only occurs under specific, circumstances, including entombment by rapid burial of fine-grain sediments and precipitation of dissolved minerals (e.g., carbonates, etc.). Therefore, in addition to targeting sites where liquid water might have been present, the next step is to locate paleoenvironments that were most favorable for the capture and preservation of fossil biosignatures. Astrobiologically important sites on Mars are: hydrothermal, lacustrine, and "grab-bag" (e.g., a locale that had a variety of geologic processes acting upon it). An emphasis on lander safety and surface accessibility is also vital in landing site selection. Surfaces must have little accumulation of dust and yet be relatively smooth with a low degree of rock abundance. The landing ellipse must lie on a flat surface, eliminating areas with irregular or heavily cratered surfaces. Visiting sites where natural geological processes (e.g., outfloods, impacts, etc.) have transported a variety of materials to a single site is vital. The aim in site selection is to ensure access to a variety of aqueous deposits of differing ages.

  11. Influence of In Vitro IL-2 or IL-15 Alone or in Combination with Hsp 70 Derived 14-Mer Peptide (TKD) on the Expression of NK Cell Activatory and Inhibitory Receptors on Peripheral Blood T Cells, B Cells and NKT Cells.

    PubMed

    Hromadnikova, Ilona; Li, Shuang; Kotlabova, Katerina; Dickinson, Anne M

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies from Multhoff and colleagues reported that plasma membrane Hsp70 acts as a tumour-specific recognition structure for activated NK cells, and that the incubation of NK cells with Hsp70 and/or a 14-mer peptide derived from the N-terminal sequence of Hsp70 (TKDNNLLGRFELSG, TKD, aa 450-463) plus a low dose of IL-2 triggers NK cell proliferation and migration, and their capacity to kill cancer cells expressing membrane Hsp70. Herein, we have used flow cytometry to determine the influence of in vitro stimulation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells from healthy individuals with IL-2 or IL-15, either alone or in combination with TKD peptide on the cell surface expression of CD94, NK cell activatory receptors (CD16, NK2D, NKG2C, NKp30, NKp44, NKp46, NKp80, KIR2DL4, DNAM-1 and LAMP1) and NK cell inhibitory receptors (NKG2A, KIR2DL2/L3, LIR1/ILT-2 and NKR-P1A) by CD3+CD56+ (NKT), CD3+CD4+, CD3+CD8+ and CD19+ populations. NKG2D, DNAM-1, LAMP1 and NKR-P1A expression was upregulated after the stimulation with IL-2 or IL-15 alone or in combination with TKD in NKT, CD8+ T cells and B cells. CD94 was upregulated in NKT and CD8+ T cells. Concurrently, an increase in a number of CD8+ T cells expressing LIR1/ILT-2 and CD4+ T cells positive for NKR-P1A was observed. The proportion of CD8+ T cells that expressed NKG2D was higher after IL-2/TKD treatment, when compared with IL-2 treatment alone. In comparison with IL-15 alone, IL-15/TKD treatment increased the proportion of NKT cells that were positive for CD94, LAMP1 and NKRP-1A. The more potent effect of IL-15/TKD on cell surface expression of NKG2D, LIR1/ILT-2 and NKRP-1A was observed in B cells compared with IL-15 alone. However, this increase was not of statistical significance. IL-2/TKD induced significant upregulation of LAMP1 in CD8+ T cells compared with IL-2 alone. Besides NK cells, other immunocompetent cells present within the fraction of peripheral blood mononuclear cells were influenced by the treatment

  12. Influence of In Vitro IL-2 or IL-15 Alone or in Combination with Hsp 70 Derived 14-Mer Peptide (TKD) on the Expression of NK Cell Activatory and Inhibitory Receptors on Peripheral Blood T Cells, B Cells and NKT Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hromadnikova, Ilona; Li, Shuang; Kotlabova, Katerina; Dickinson, Anne M.

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies from Multhoff and colleagues reported that plasma membrane Hsp70 acts as a tumour-specific recognition structure for activated NK cells, and that the incubation of NK cells with Hsp70 and/or a 14-mer peptide derived from the N-terminal sequence of Hsp70 (TKDNNLLGRFELSG, TKD, aa 450–463) plus a low dose of IL-2 triggers NK cell proliferation and migration, and their capacity to kill cancer cells expressing membrane Hsp70. Herein, we have used flow cytometry to determine the influence of in vitro stimulation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells from healthy individuals with IL-2 or IL-15, either alone or in combination with TKD peptide on the cell surface expression of CD94, NK cell activatory receptors (CD16, NK2D, NKG2C, NKp30, NKp44, NKp46, NKp80, KIR2DL4, DNAM-1 and LAMP1) and NK cell inhibitory receptors (NKG2A, KIR2DL2/L3, LIR1/ILT-2 and NKR-P1A) by CD3+CD56+ (NKT), CD3+CD4+, CD3+CD8+ and CD19+ populations. NKG2D, DNAM-1, LAMP1 and NKR-P1A expression was upregulated after the stimulation with IL-2 or IL-15 alone or in combination with TKD in NKT, CD8+ T cells and B cells. CD94 was upregulated in NKT and CD8+ T cells. Concurrently, an increase in a number of CD8+ T cells expressing LIR1/ILT-2 and CD4+ T cells positive for NKR-P1A was observed. The proportion of CD8+ T cells that expressed NKG2D was higher after IL-2/TKD treatment, when compared with IL-2 treatment alone. In comparison with IL-15 alone, IL-15/TKD treatment increased the proportion of NKT cells that were positive for CD94, LAMP1 and NKRP-1A. The more potent effect of IL-15/TKD on cell surface expression of NKG2D, LIR1/ILT-2 and NKRP-1A was observed in B cells compared with IL-15 alone. However, this increase was not of statistical significance. IL-2/TKD induced significant upregulation of LAMP1 in CD8+ T cells compared with IL-2 alone. Besides NK cells, other immunocompetent cells present within the fraction of peripheral blood mononuclear cells were influenced by the treatment

  13. DEVELOPMENT AND SELECTION OF TECHNOLOGIES FOR MERCURY MANAGEMENT ON U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY SITES: THE MER01-MER04 AND MERCURY SPECIATION DEMONSTRATIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Morris, Michael I.; Hulet, Greg A.

    2003-02-27

    The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Transuranic and Mixed Waste Focus Area (TMFA), funded from fiscal year (FY) 1996 though FY 2002, was tasked with finding solutions for the mixed waste treatment problems of the DOE complex. During TMFA's initial technical baseline development process, three of the top four technology deficiencies identified were the need for amalgamation, stabilization, and separation/removal technologies for the treatment of mercury-contaminated mixed waste. The Mercury Working Group (HgWG), a selected group of representatives from DOE sites with significant mercury waste inventories, assisted TMFA in soliciting, identifying, initiating, and managing efforts to address these areas. Solicitations and contract awards were made to the private sector to demonstrate both the amalgamation and stabilization processes using both actual mixed wastes and surrogate samples. The goal was to develop separation and removal processes that will meet DOE's needs. This paper discusses the technology selection process, development activities, and the accomplishments of TMFA through these various activities.

  14. 21 CFR 177.1040 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... exposed to distilled water and 3 pct acetic acid for 10 d at 66 °C (150 °F)The extracted copolymer shall not exceed 0.001 mg/in 2 surface area of the food contact article when exposed to distilled water and... 2 surface area of the food contact article when exposed to distilled water and 3 pct acetic acid...

  15. Hematite at Meridiani Planum, Mars, Investigated by Simultaneous Fitting of MER Mossbauer Spectra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleischer, I.; Agresti, D. G.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Morris, Richard V.

    2010-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity encountered sedimentary outcrop rocks at its landing site. Spherules with diameters in the millimeter range were found to weather from the outcrop rocks. With Opportunity s miniaturised M ssbauer spectrometer MIMOS II, hematite was detected in spherules and in the outcrop matrix [1,2]. Figure 1 shows the target Berry Bowl, where brushed outcrop and an accumulation of spherules could be investigated on sols 46 and 48 of Opportunity s mission. Hematite undergoes a transition from a weakly ferromagnetic above to an antiferromagnetic state below the Morin temperature (T(sub M) approx.265 K for chemically pure, crystalline hematite). The magnetic hyperfine splitting (B(sub hf)) shows a general decrease with increasing temperature and a drop of approx.0.8 T at T(sub M). The quadrupole splitting ((Delta)EQ) changes its sign at T(sub M), with negative values above and positive values below the transition. Crystallinity and particle size influence the magnitude and temperature dependence of the magnetic splitting and the quadrupole splitting [3].

  16. Distinct Igneous APXS Rock Compositions on Mars from Pathfinder, MER and MSL

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gellert, Ralf; Arvidson, Raymond; Clark, Benton, III; Ming, Douglas W.; Morris, Richard V.; Squyres, Steven W.; Yen, Albert S.

    2015-01-01

    The alpha particle x-ray spectrometer (APXS) on all four Mars Rovers returned geochemical data from about 1000 rocks and soils along the combined traverses of over 50 kilometers. Here we discuss rocks likely of igneous origin, which might represent source materials for the soils and sediments identified along the traverses. Adirondack-type basalts, abundant in the plains of Gusev Crater, are primitive, olivine bearing basalts. They resemble in composition the basaltic soils encountered at all landing sites, except the ubiquitous elevated S, Cl and Zn in soils. They have been postulated to represent closely the average Martian crust composition. The recently identified new Martian meteorite Black Beauty has similar overall geochemical composition, very distinct from the earlier established SNC meteorites. The rim of the Noachian crater Endeavour, predating the sulfate-bearing Burns formation at Meridiani Planum, also resembles closely the composition of Adirondack basalts. At Gale Crater, the MSL Curiosity rover identified a felsic rock type exemplified by the mugearitic float rock JakeM, which is widespread along the traverse at Gale. While a surprise at that time, possibly related more evolved, alkaline rocks had been previously identified on Mars. Spirit encountered the Wishstone rocks in the Columbia Hills with approx. 6% Na2O+K2O, 15 % Al2O3 and low 12% FeO. Pathfinder rocks with elevated K and Na and >50% SiO2 were postulated to be andesitic. Recently Opportunity encountered the rock JeanBaptisteCharbonneau with >15% Al2O3, >50% SiO2 and approx. 10% FeO. A common characteristic all these rocks is the very low abundance of Cr, Ni and Zn, and an Fe/Mn ratio of about 50, indicating an unaltered Fe mineralogy. Beside these likely igneous rock types, which occurred always in several rocks, a few unique rocks were encountered, e.g. Bounce Rock, a pyroxene-bearing ejecta rock fragment resembling the Shergottite EETA 79001B meteorite. The APXS data can be used to relate the findings of all 4 landing sites, constrain the water to rock ratio of sediments or imply source rock provenance. Beyond that the capability to quantify important volatile elements like P, S, Cl, and Br have provided new insights into the chemistry and the environment present during the formation of the sediments.

  17. Acute Respiratory Infections in Travelers Returning from MERS-CoV–Affected Areas

    PubMed Central

    Olsha, Romy; Kristjanson, Erik; Marchand-Austin, Alex; Peci, Adriana; Winter, Anne-Luise; Gubbay, Jonathan B.

    2015-01-01

    We examined which respiratory pathogens were identified during screening for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in 177 symptomatic travelers returning to Ontario, Canada, from regions affected by the virus. Influenza A and B viruses (23.1%) and rhinovirus (19.8%) were the most common pathogens identified among these travelers. PMID:26291541

  18. Acute Respiratory Infections in Travelers Returning from MERS-CoV-Affected Areas.

    PubMed

    German, Matthew; Olsha, Romy; Kristjanson, Erik; Marchand-Austin, Alex; Peci, Adriana; Winter, Anne-Luise; Gubbay, Jonathan B

    2015-09-01

    We examined which respiratory pathogens were identified during screening for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in 177 symptomatic travelers returning to Ontario, Canada, from regions affected by the virus. Influenza A and B viruses (23.1%) and rhinovirus (19.8%) were the most common pathogens identified among these travelers. PMID:26291541

  19. Two Martian Winters at Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum: New Results From the MER Mossbauer Spectrometers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klingelhoefer, Goestar; Morris, Richard V.; Schroeder, Christian; Rodionov, Daniel S.; Yen, Albert S.; Ming, Douglas W.; Cohen, Barbara A.; Fleischer, Iris; Mittlefehldt, David W.; McCoy, Tim; de Souza, Paulo Jr.

    2006-01-01

    After sol 511 of its mission in Gusev Crater, Spirit traversed from the top of Husband Hill to its current Winter Haven on Low Ridge. M ssbauer analyses of several rock and soil targets along the traverse yielded further evidence for the wide-spread occurrence of aqueous processes in the Columbia Hills. The rock Independence was found on the flank of Husband Hill. It has low total Fe with about 24-30 % of its iron in ilmenite. This assemblage implies alteration under aqueous conditions; some phases were altered and elements such as Fe were leached out, while less soluble Fe-bearing phases such as ilmenite remain. The soil target Dead_Sea_Samra was found in subsurface soil revealed when the wheels dug into soil during the traverse from Husband Hill to Home Plate. Its M ssbauer spectrum shows a high abundance of ferric sulfate, similar to the Paso Robles soil targets found on Husband Hill. At its current location at Winter Haven Spirit investigated the target Halley which appears to be part of a wider-spread indurated layer underlying basaltic soil. This target shows the highest abundance of hematite in all Gusev soil and rock targets investigated to date. Opportunity at Meridiani Planum traversed from the 300 m diameter buried Erebus Crater towards 800 m Victoria Crater. The main components of Meridiani Planum jarosite-bearing outcrop rocks, basaltic soil, and a hematite lag remain remarkably constant in M ssbauer spectra throughout the traverse. Cobbles (rock fragments greater than 1 cm) show variability however. A meteorite (Barberton) has been identified based on kamacite peaks in the M ssbauer spectrum. Other cobbles show Mossbauer spectra similar to jarosite-bearing outcrops, or to basaltic rock, or mixtures thereof, suggesting an origin as impact breccias. Some cobbles were investigated at the edge of the annulus of Victoria Crater from which they may have been excavated. Mossbauer spectra reveal a basaltic signature, dominated by olivine and pyroxene. In general for both rovers the radioactive Mossbauer source became naturally weaker, but both instruments are still able to perform good quality measurements.

  20. An Extended Kalman filter (EKF) for Mars Exploration Rover (MER) entry, descent, and landing reconstruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lisano, M. E.

    2003-01-01

    This paper describes the design and initial test results of an extended Kalman filter that has been developed at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) for post-flight reconstruction of the trajectory and attitude history of a spacecraft entering a planetary atmosphere and descending upon a parachute.

  1. Characterization of Rock Types at Meridiani Planum, Mars using MER 13-Filter Pancam Spectra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nuding, D. L.; Cohen, B. A.

    2009-01-01

    The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has traversed more than 13 km across Meridiani Planum, finding evidence of ancient aqueous environments that, in the past, may have been suitable for life. Meridiani bedrock along the rover traverse is a mixture in composition and bulk mineralogy between a sulfate-rich sedimentary rock and hematite spherules ("blueberries"). On top of the bedrock, numerous loose rocks exist. These rocks consist of both local bedrock and "cobbles" of foreign origin. The cobbles provide a window into lithologic diversity and a chance to understand other types of martian rocks and meteorites. This study was also an attempt to establish a method to expand upon those of Mini-TES to remotely identify rocks of interest to make efficient use of the rover s current resources.

  2. Antibodies against MERS Coronavirus in Dromedary Camels, Kenya, 1992–2013

    PubMed Central

    Corman, Victor M.; Jores, Joerg; Meyer, Benjamin; Younan, Mario; Liljander, Anne; Said, Mohammed Y.; Gluecks, Ilona; Lattwein, Erik; Bosch, Berend-Jan; Drexler, Jan Felix; Bornstein, Set; Müller, Marcel A.

    2014-01-01

    Dromedary camels are a putative source for human infections with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus. We showed that camels sampled in different regions in Kenya during 1992–2013 have antibodies against this virus. High densities of camel populations correlated with increased seropositivity and might be a factor in predicting long-term virus maintenance. PMID:25075637

  3. La conquête des mers siluriennes par les Spiriferida (Brachiopoda)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gourvennec, Rémy

    1999-11-01

    The spiriferid brachiopods appeared in the Late Ordovician (Middle Ashgill) in southeastern Asia and then spread throughout the world during the Silurian. The strategies of expansion of the group and the changes in its diversity during this period are discussed here.

  4. Preliminary epidemiologic assessment of MERS-CoV outbreak in South Korea, May–June 2015

    PubMed Central

    Cowling, Benjamin J; Park, Minah; Fang, Vicky J; Wu, Peng; Leung, Gabriel M; Wu, Joseph T

    2015-01-01

    South Korea is experiencing the largest outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infections outside the Arabian Peninsula, with 166 laboratory-confirmed cases, including 24 deaths as of 19 June 2015. We estimated that the mean incubation period was 6.7 days and the mean serial interval 12.6 days. We found it unlikely that infectiousness precedes symptom onset. Based on currently available data, we predict an overall case fatality risk of 21.3% (95% credible interval: 14%–31%). PMID:26132767

  5. Moessbauer Spectroscopy on the Martian Surface: Constraints on Interpretation of MER Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dyar, M. D.; Schaefer, M. W.

    2003-01-01

    Moessbauer spectrometers will be used on martian landers and rovers to identify and quantify relative amounts of Fe-bearing minerals, as well as to determine their Fe(3+)/Fe(2+) ratios, allowing more realistic modeling of martian mineralogy and evolution. However, derivation of mineral modes, Fe(3+)/Fe(2+) ratios, and phase identification via Moessbauer spectroscopy (MS) does have limitations. We discuss here the exciting potential of MS for remote planetary exploration, as well as constraints on interpretation of remote Moessbauer data.

  6. 21 CFR 177.1040 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... temperature for 2 h.1 Minimum 10 pct solution viscosity at 25 °C (77 °F) is 10cP. 1 3. Acrylonitrile/styrene... average molecular weight, and solution viscosity, titled: “Determination of Residual Acrylonitrile and... Weights of Acrylonitrile/Styrene Copolymers,” and “Analytical Method for 10% Solution Viscosity of...

  7. 21 CFR 177.1040 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... deionized water or reagent grade n-heptane at reflux temperature for 2 h.1 Minimum 10 pct solution viscosity... viscosity, titled: “Determination of Residual Acrylonitrile and Styrene Monomers-Gas Chromatographic... Copolymers,” and “Analytical Method for 10% Solution Viscosity of Tyril,” which are incorproated by...

  8. Crystal structure of an amphiphilic foldamer reveals a 48-mer assembly comprising a hollow truncated octahedron.

    PubMed

    Pavone, Vincenzo; Zhang, Shao-Qing; Merlino, Antonello; Lombardi, Angela; Wu, Yibing; DeGrado, William F

    2014-01-01

    Foldamers provide an attractive medium to test the mechanisms by which biological macromolecules fold into complex three-dimensional structures, and ultimately to design novel protein-like architectures with properties unprecedented in nature. Here, we describe a large cage-like structure formed from an amphiphilic arylamide foldamer crystallized from aqueous solution. Forty-eight copies of the foldamer assemble into a 5-nm cage-like structure, an omnitruncated octahedron filled with well-ordered ice-like water molecules. The assembly is stabilized by a mix of arylamide stacking interaction, hydrogen bonding and hydrophobic forces. The omnitruncated octahedra tessellate to form a cubic crystal. These findings may provide an important step towards the design of nanostructured particles resembling spherical viruses. PMID:24705140

  9. Terrain Roughness from MER Traverse Profiles at Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehlmann, B. L.; Snider, N. O.; Seelos, F. P.; Arvidson, R. E.

    2004-12-01

    During the traverses of the Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity over their respective landing sites, telemetry data were collected from the rover inertial measurement unit (IMU) and suspension system at 2-8 Hz. Joint angles in the rover's rocker-bogie suspension system, rover attitude, and rover reported position were used to calculate x-y-z coordinates of each of the six rover wheels. These data were used to create mm-scale topographic profiles along selected rover traverses. Terrain at Meridiani Planum is remarkably flat, consistent with predictions from orbital data. For example, the 140.9 m long sol 82 traverse shows a variation of 40.3 cm over the total traverse with a height standard deviation of only 3.2 cm over the first 55 m. In contrast, profiles from the Gusev crater landing site are rougher and characteristic of a surface with abundant rocks and hollows. The sol 45 and 50 traverses show the profile of Laguna Hollow, a ~20 m wide and half meter deep crater. At both landing sites, cm scale periodicity is evident in some segments of the traverse, suggesting the wavelength and amplitude of aeolian bedforms is being sensed and recorded by the rover wheels. Data are being analyzed to compute surface roughness statistics (RMS height, RMS deviation, and Hurst exponent) and evaluate azimuthal dependency of roughness. These statistics, when compared to those of analog terrestrial terrains, provide insight into the geomorphological processes shaping the martian surface in Gusev Crater and at Meridiani Planum. Further, along with stereo imaging from Pancam and Navcam, examination of topographic profiles allows ground truthing over multiple length scales terrain roughness estimates derived from radar scattering and MOLA pulse width.

  10. Terrestrial Analogue Field Thermal Emission Spectroscopy: Applications to the MER Mini-TES

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenhagen, B. T.; Kirkland, L. E.; Herr, K. C.

    2002-12-01

    The 2003 Mars Exploration Rover science strategy is to identify promising targets using the visible/near-infrared imaging Pancam and the thermal infrared spectrometer Mini-TES. The rover would then traverse to those targets for more detailed examination. Team members will select sites using target morphology and color from Pancam, and interpretations of the mineralogy using Mini-TES. This strategy requires low ambiguity, near real-time interpretations of Mini-TES data. Field spectrometer measurements from a rover perspective differ significantly from both laboratory and airborne measurements. Thus field testing using instrumentation similar to the Mini-TES is required to develop and test methods. We will discuss our field testing research toward that end, with a focus on smooth rock coatings. Researchers desire to detect and characterize smooth rock coatings on Mars, if present. In July 2002, we measured field data of a varnished desert pavement, using equipment that measures very similarly to the Mini-TES. Desert varnish may provide information on the environmental conditions, and interests exobiologists because it may be biologically mediated. Downwelling radiance can affect the spectral character by imparting the spectral character of the downwelling radiance onto the measured target spectrum. The contribution differs from the airborne, laboratory, and field perspectives, and with the surface texture. Downwelling radiance is the thermal energy radiated onto a target by all objects in the hemisphere, including surrounding materials and atmospheric gases and aerosols. Smooth (specular) targets reflect light at the angle of incidence (line-sight), while diffuse targets reflect downwelling radiance integrated from the entire hemisphere. Because even smooth rock coatings are not entirely smooth, they have both diffuse and specular components. Typically the diffuse downwelling component is measured using a high reflectance, rough-surfaced target with a known spectral signature. This is then used to compensate the geologic target for the downwelling component. This assumes that both the downwelling target and the geologic material have the same diffuse and line-site reflected downwelling radiance contributions. This works well for diffuse targets. However, smooth targets have a significant specular component, and the measurement and conversion protocols for these materials are currently poorly understood. The 2003 Mars rover does not carry a diffuse, high-reflectance target for Mini-TES. Thus the diffuse downwelling radiance will have to be estimated from line-sight sky measurements. Development and testing of this procedure and an improved understanding of the required measurement protocols and uncertainties will require field testing. We use Fourier transform infrared interferometers (M100). The M100 raster scans in two dimensions at 25 Hz, and it records the viewing angles with the data. The field of view is 20 or 8 mrad (Mini-TES) vs. 9 mrad (M100); spectral sampling interval 10 vs. 2 wavenumbers; spectral range 5-25 vs. 7.5-13.5 microns; and mast height 1.4 vs. 2-3 meters for the Mini-TES vs. M100, respectively.

  11. Blockade of MerTK Activation by AMPK Inhibits RPE Cell Phagocytosis.

    PubMed

    Qin, Suofu

    2016-01-01

    Timely removal of shed photoreceptor outer segments by retinal pigment epithelial cells (RPE) plays a key role in biological renewal of these highly peroxidizable structures and in maintenance of retina health. How environmental stress cause RPE cell dysfunction is undefined however. AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), a heterotrimer of a catalytic α subunit and regulatory β and γ subunits, maintains energy homeostasis by limiting energy utilization and/or promoting energy production when energy supply is compromised. Intriguingly, AMPK has been shown to be important in functions of RPE cells. In this mini-review, the role and mechanisms of AMPK in controlling RPE cell phagocytosis are discussed. PMID:26427488

  12. Depth-selective Mössbauer spectroscopy from the two MER landing sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleischer, I.; Klingelhöfer, G.; Rodionov, D.

    2008-09-01

    Introduction The miniaturized Mössbauer spectrometers (MIMOS II) on board of the two Mars Exploration rovers Spirit and Opportunity have obtained more than 600 Mössbauer spectra in backscattering geometry on over 300 different rock and soil targets [1-5]. Both instruments have simultaneously collected 6.4 keV Xray and 14.4 keV γ-ray spectra, thus providing depth selective information about the measured samples [6]. Simulation and laboratory results Mössbauer spectra of layered samples are influenced by the composition, the density and the thickness of the layers. The influence of each of these parameters can be studied in a Monte Carlo simulation, which allows the modelling of a sample composed of two homogeneous layers, each containing up to ten different mineral phases. For a given number of γ-rays, the path from the source into the sample and back to the detector is modelled, taking into account the geometry of the experimental setup of MIMOS II. Xrays and γ-rays interact nonresonantly through the photoelectric effect, Compton- and Rayleighscattering, only 14.4-keV γ-rays can be absorbed resonantly via the Mössbauer effect. Each interaction can alter the direction of movement as well as the energy of a photon. For calibration purposes, layered samples with well known composition were measured with a laboratory copy of the MIMOS II sensorhead. These samples were composed of thin sections of pure minerals (olivine, pyroxene, and epidote) or Iron foils with thicknesses between 50 and 100 μm on top of pure mineral samples with flat surfaces (pyrite, hematite, pyroxene, and epidote). These minerals were chosen because their hyperfine parameters render them easy to distinguish in Mössbauer spectra. Subspectral areas from simulated and measured spectra are in good agreement [6]. Mazatzal, Gusev crater On the Adirondack-class rock "Mazatzal", located on the plains of Gusev crater, a distinctive coating interpreted as a thin weathering rind was detected [7]. Figure 1 shows the 6.4 keV and 14.4 keV spectra obtained on the brushed surface of Mazatzal. The weathering product nanophase oxide (npOx) shows a higher subspectral area in the 6.4-keV-spectra (~ 45%) than in the 14.4-keV-spectra (~ 30%). Simulated spectra based on a model with a surface layer composed of mainly npOx and with a thickness of 10 μm compare best to measurements. Meridiani cobbles: Along Opportunity's traverse, several rock fragments with no apparent geological relationship to Meridiani Planum were analyzed. These cobbles appear to have a variety of different origins [8]. BounceRock (Sols 66-70): BounceRock is chemically and mineralogically similar to SNC meteorites [9, 10]. The 6.4 keV spectrum obtained on the undisturbed spot "Fips2" shows an enrichment of npOx in comparison to the 14.4 keV spectrum (see Figure 1). An additional magnetic phase is present, whose Mössbauer parameters are in agreement with pyrrhotite, which is also a typical accessory mineral in SNC meteorites [10]. HeatShieldRock (Sols 348-351) HeatShieldRock was classified as an iron meteorite. Mössbauer spectra show mostly kamacite with little npOx. A coating, probably a remnant of a fusion crust, is visible in Pancam spectra. For Mössbauer measurements, a field of view containing both coated and uncoated portions of the surface was chosen [11]. However, the 6.4 keV spectrum obtained on the brushed spot shows less npOx (2%) than the corresponding 14.4 keV spectrum (4%). This is inconsistent with an oxidized fusion crust on the rock. 14.4 keV and 6.4 keV spectra obtained on other cobbles show differences which can be attributed to minor alteration, surface dust contamination or the inhomogeneous nature of the sample [12]. Soils at both landing sites Generally, soil spectra obtained at both landing sites show great similarities and soil was shown to be a global component [13]. Mössbauer areas obtained from 6.4 keV and 14.4 keV spectra were plotted against each other for olivine, pyroxene, nanophase ferric oxide (npOx), hematite and magnetite (Figure 2). Measurements with the same subspectral areas in 6.4 keV and 14.4 keV spectra should plot on a line through the origin with slope 1. The plots for both landing sites show slightly larger olivine subspectral areas - in combination with slightly smaller pyroxene subspectral areas- in 6.4 keV spectra as compared to 14.4 keV spectra. The same characteristics can be observed for spectra obtained on rock targets at Gusev crater [6]. Hematite spherules at Meridiani Planum With Opportunity's Mössbauer spectrometer, several measurements were performed on hematite-rich spherules (informally also named "berries"). Different kinds of spherule distributions were analyzed (see Figure 3), e.g. four spherules (spherule diameter ~4 mm) on soil between sols 222 and 228 ("Berry Survey"), and a spot of soil covered entirely with small spherules (spherule diameter ~0.5 mm) on sol 368 ("Ripple Crest"). Differences between 14.4 keV spectra and 6.4 keV spectra may result from (1) an inhomogeneous composition of the berries or (2) different penetration depths of 14.4 keV γ-rays and 6.4 keV X-rays. For comparison, we performed laboratory experiments with two different configurations of hematite spherules and basaltic sand. For a first measurement, the spherules were placed on top of coarse basaltic sand (grain size 0.5 - 1 mm). A second measurement was made after covering the spherules with fine basaltic sand (grain size <0.1 mm). Four large (~5 mm diameter) spherules were measured in the first experiment, and enough small spherules (~1.5 mm diameter) to cover the field of view were measured in the second experiment. Fine sand did not adhere to the hematite spherules, but rather accumulated in the gaps between them, comparable to what can be observed for both Meridiani samples (Figure 3). All four spectra obtained on the Meridiani samples are comparable to the laboratory spectra obtained on sand covered spherules (see table 1). These results are in agreement with a homogeneous spherule composition (pure hematite), and a soil signature from substrate and soil accumulated between spherules. The differences between 6.4 keV spectra and 14.4 keV can be attributed to energy-dependent penetration depths, leading to varying amounts of soil visible in the spectra. References [1] Klingelhöfer, G., et al. (2003) JGR 108, E12, 8067. [2] Klingelhöfer, G., et al. (2004), Science, 306. [3] Morris, R.V., et al. (2006a), JGR, 111, E02S13. [4] Morris, R.V., et al. (2006b), JGR, 111, E12S15. [5] Morris, R.V., et al. (2008), JGR, submitted. [6] Fleischer, I., et al. (2008) JGR, in press. [7] Haskin, L., et al (2005) Nature, 436. [8] Jolliff, B., et al. (2006) LPS XXXVII, 2401. [9] Zipfel, J., et al. (2008) MAPS, submitted. [10] Meyer, C., et al. (2003) MMC. [11] Schröder, C., et al. (2008), JGR, 113, E06S22. [12] Fleischer, I., et al. (2008) LPS XXXIX, 1618. [13] Yen, A., et al. (2005), Nature, 436, 49.

  13. Reading and the Video Screen. M.E.R.: No. 2.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robinson, Brent

    This paper looks at the potential of the new electronic media of broadcast television (including teletext and interactive cable), the videodisc, and the microcomputer. It examines the nature and extent of these media as textual communication systems and considers their implications in terms of both the reading skills they demand, and the ways in…

  14. Subtitling Television for Deaf Children. M.E.R.: No. 3.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Robert

    Experiments reported in this document were intended to shed light on the linguistic and presentational issues surrounding the provision of a subtitling service for deaf schoolchildren. A series of formal experiments was carried out to evaluate deaf children's appreciation of subtitled television programs. (These experiments are described in detail…

  15. The Miniaturized Moessbauer Spectrometer MIMOS II of the Athena Payload for the 2003 MER Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klingelhoefer, G.; Morris, R. V.; deSouza, P. A., Jr.; Bernhardt, B.

    2003-01-01

    A first-order requirement of spacecraft missions that land on Mars is instrumentation for in situ mineralogical analysis. Moessbauer Spectroscopy is a powerful tool for quantitative analysis of Fe-bearing materials. The Athena Moessbauer spectrometer MIMOS II on the martian surface will provide: (1) identification of iron-bearing phases (e.g., oxides, silicates, sulfides, sulfates, and carbonates), (2) quantitative measurement of the distribution of iron among its oxidation states (e.g., Fe(2+)/Fe(3+) ratio), and (3) quantitative measurement of the distribution of iron among iron-bearing phases (e.g., the relative proportions of iron in olivine, pyroxene, and magnetite in a basalt) in rocks and soils. Moessbauer data will also be highly complementary with chemical analyses from the APXS and the Mini-TES compositional data. Mars is a particularly good place to do Moessbauer mineralogy because its surface is iron rich (approx. 20% Fe as Fe2O3). Moessbauer spectrometers that are built with backscatter measurement geometry require no sample preparation, a factor important for in situ planetary measurements.

  16. A supercritical water oxidation reactor: The Material Evaluations Reactor (MeR)

    SciTech Connect

    LaJeunesse, C.A.; Rice, S.F.; Bartel, J.J.; Kelley, M.; Seibel, C.A.; Hoffa, L.G.; Eklund, T.F.; Odegard, B.C.

    1992-02-01

    The paper describes the construction and control details of a supercritical water oxidation (SCWO) flow reactor. These details include a description of the Quality Function Deployment process that identified the system requirements and resource allocations, an overview of the SCWO process, and an in-depth description of the reactor itself including both physical and operational design. Supercritical water oxidation to destroy aqueous organic waste is a relatively new technology discovered about twelve years ago at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. It is not commercialized presently, but shows promise for detoxifying wastes in an efficient, cost-competitive, and environmentally safe manner. Supercritical water oxidation occurs at moderate temperatures and pressures where the ability of water to dissolve hydrocarbons is greatly enhanced. Depending on the feed stream and residence time, the dissolved hydrocarbon reacts with an oxidizer to produce innocuous combustion products. We also report the development of an optical component for this flow reactor that permits the use of laser-based diagnostics, specifically spontaneous Raman scattering, to directly probe the reacting flow. Optical accessibility allows the determination of the concentration of these reactants and the chemical kinetics of the reaction in-situ -- the spatial dependence of mechanical processes, in particular corrosion and deposition, that affect the long term reliability of reactors can also be investigated.

  17. Effects of Variable Temperature on Mossbauer Data Acquisition: Laboratory-based and MER A Results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rothstein, Y.; Sklute, E. C.; Dyar, M. D.; Schaefer, M. W.

    2005-01-01

    Mossbauer spectrometers on the Spirit and Opportunity rovers have played a valuable role in identifying mineralogy at both the Gusev and Meridiani landing sites. Key to the application of Mossbauer results is the issue of how accurately the peak positions, on which the mineral identifications are based, can be determined. Remote Mossbauer spectroscopy has by necessity some unusual experimental constraints that may influence the confidence with which peak positions can be fit. We present here an analysis of the effects of variable temperature and short duration run times on spectral resolution.

  18. Topographic Mapping and Rover Localization in MER 2003 Mission Landing Sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, R.; di, K.; Matthies, L.; Maimone, M.; Arvidson, R.; Crumpler, L.; Xu, F.; Wang, J.; Niu, X.; Serafy, C.; Ming, D.; Richter, L.; Marais, D.; Golombek, M.; Squyres, S.; Johnson, J.; Bell, J.; Maki, J.; Malin, M.; Parker, T.; Edwards, L.; Sims, M.; Wang, A.; Garvin, J.; Soderblom, L.

    2004-05-01

    This presentation illustrates results of topographic mapping and rover localization in Spirit and Opportunity landing sites. MOC/NA images, DIMES descent images, and surface Pancam and Navcam images are used to map regional and local topographic features of the landing sites. A new bundle adjustment method builds an image network with improved visual odometric data to supply enhance pointing data that are essential for high accuracy mapping and rover localization. Special 3D mapping products of the crater where Opportunity spacecraft landed are produced first time using rover images acquired from inside of a planetary crater. Traverse maps will show the comparison result of rover positions computed from the rover telemetry data with those from the image-based localization method. Analysis of the differences will be performed considering wheel slippage, IMU drift, and other factors. High quality topographic mapping products such as orthoimage base maps, 3D digital terrain models, and 3D interactive viewing tools are developed to support a series of mission operations and outreach activities, including long term science planning, rover path planning, geological mapping, wheel track property investigation, rock distribution estimation, crater modeling, and TV simulation scenes.

  19. 21 CFR 177.1040 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... exposed to distilled water and 3 pct acetic acid for 10 d at 66 °C (150 °F)The extracted copolymer shall not exceed 0.001 mg/in 2 surface area of the food contact article when exposed to distilled water and... 2 surface area of the food contact article when exposed to distilled water and 3 pct acetic acid...

  20. 76 FR 2920 - Notice of Correction to Notice of Realty Action: Competitive Online Auction of Public Lands in...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-01-18

    .... The individual patents, when issued, will contain a mineral reservation to the United States for oil, gas, sodium, potassium, and all saleable minerals. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Manuela Johnson...

  1. CD8 T-cell responses against the immunodominant Theileria parva peptide Tp249-59 are composed of two distinct populations specific for overlapping 11-mer and 10-mer epitopes.

    PubMed

    Connelley, Timothy K; Li, Xiaoying; MacHugh, Niall; Colau, Didier; Graham, Simon P; van der Bruggen, Pierre; Taracha, Evans L; Gill, Andy; Morrison, William Ivan

    2016-10-01

    Immunity against Theileria parva is associated with CD8 T-cell responses that exhibit immunodominance, focusing the response against limited numbers of epitopes. As candidates for inclusion in vaccines, characterization of responses against immunodominant epitopes is a key component in novel vaccine development. We have previously demonstrated that the Tp249-59 and Tp1214-224 epitopes dominate CD8 T-cell responses in BoLA-A10 and BoLA-18 MHC I homozygous animals, respectively. In this study, peptide-MHC I tetramers for these epitopes, and a subdominant BoLA-A10-restricted epitope (Tp298-106 ), were generated to facilitate accurate and rapid enumeration of epitope-specific CD8 T cells. During validation of these tetramers a substantial proportion of Tp249-59 -reactive T cells failed to bind the tetramer, suggesting that this population was heterogeneous with respect to the recognized epitope. We demonstrate that Tp250-59 represents a distinct epitope and that tetramers produced with Tp50-59 and Tp49-59 show no cross-reactivity. The Tp249-59 and Tp250-59 epitopes use different serine residues as the N-terminal anchor for binding to the presenting MHC I molecule. Molecular dynamic modelling predicts that the two peptide-MHC I complexes adopt structurally different conformations and Tcell receptor β sequence analysis showed that Tp249-59 and Tp250-59 are recognized by non-overlapping T-cell receptor repertoires. Together these data demonstrate that although differing by only a single residue, Tp249-59 and Tp250-59 epitopes form distinct ligands for T-cell receptor recognition. Tetramer analysis of T. parva-specific CD8 T-cell lines confirmed the immunodominance of Tp1214-224 in BoLA-A18 animals and showed in BoLA-A10 animals that the Tp249-59 epitope response was generally more dominant than the Tp250-59 response and confirmed that the Tp298-106 response was subdominant. PMID:27317384

  2. A study of the record of ancient sedimentary rocks on Mars using MER, HiRISE and CRISM images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Metz, Joannah M.

    2010-11-01

    Many processes that operate on a planetary surface have the potential to create sedimentary deposits which when preserved as rocks can provide clues that allow past environmental conditions to be reconstructed. This work combines several studies using data from the Mars Exploration Rover and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft to examine the structure and sedimentology of the sedimentary rock record of Mars. The first study supports the dune-interdune model proposed for the formation of the deposits at the Opportunity landing site in Meridiani Planum and provides evidence that liquid water was involved to a greater extent in the formation of outcrops in Erebus crater. The next study identifies two depositional fan complexes on the floor of southwestern Melas Chasma and suggests that they may be sublacustrine in origin, which suggests the former presence of a significant body of water stable for at least 100 to 10,000 years. Furthermore, the basin containing the fans may be a complete source-to-sink system. The third study examines the geomorphic channel patterns present on analogue terrestrial submarine fans and deltas. The last study characterizes the extent and styles of deformation of sedimentary rocks in Valles Marineris and finds that subaerial or subaqueous gravitational slumping or sliding and soft-sediment deformation are potential mechanisms that may have caused the deformation.

  3. In vivo quantifying molecular specificity of Cy5.5-labeled cyclic 9-mer peptide probe with dynamic fluorescence imaging.

    PubMed

    Dai, Yunpeng; Yin, Jipeng; Huang, Yu; Chen, Xueli; Wang, Guodong; Liu, Yajun; Zhang, Xianghan; Nie, Yongzhan; Wu, Kaichun; Liang, Jimin

    2016-04-01

    We quantified molecular specificity of Cy5.5-GX1 in vivo with dynamic fluorescence imaging to better understand its kinetic properties. According to whether or not free GX1 was injected and when it was injected, twelve of BGC-823 xenografted mice were randomly divided into three groups and underwent a 60 minute dynamic fluorescence scanning. Combined with a principal-component analysis, the binding potential (Bp) of the probe was determined by both Logan graphical analysis with reference tissue model (GARTM) and Lammertsma simplified reference tissue model (SRTM). The sum of the pharmacokinetic rate constants (SKRC) was quantified by the Gurfinkel exponential model (GEXPM). Cy5.5-GX1 specifically targeted tumor both in vitro and in vivo. We obtained similar quantification results of Bp (GARTM Bp = 0.582 ± 0.2655, SRTM Bp = 0.618 ± 0.2923), and obtained a good linear relation between the Bp value and the SKRC value. Our results indicate that the SKRC value is more suitable for an early-stage kinetic data analysis, and the Bp value depicts kinetic characteristics under the equilibrium state. Dynamic fluorescence imaging in conjunction with various kinetic models are optimal tools to quantify molecular specificity of the Cy5.5-GX1 probe in vivo. PMID:27446643

  4. In vivo quantifying molecular specificity of Cy5.5-labeled cyclic 9-mer peptide probe with dynamic fluorescence imaging

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Yunpeng; Yin, Jipeng; Huang, Yu; Chen, Xueli; Wang, Guodong; Liu, Yajun; Zhang, Xianghan; Nie, Yongzhan; Wu, Kaichun; Liang, Jimin

    2016-01-01

    We quantified molecular specificity of Cy5.5-GX1 in vivo with dynamic fluorescence imaging to better understand its kinetic properties. According to whether or not free GX1 was injected and when it was injected, twelve of BGC-823 xenografted mice were randomly divided into three groups and underwent a 60 minute dynamic fluorescence scanning. Combined with a principal-component analysis, the binding potential (Bp) of the probe was determined by both Logan graphical analysis with reference tissue model (GARTM) and Lammertsma simplified reference tissue model (SRTM). The sum of the pharmacokinetic rate constants (SKRC) was quantified by the Gurfinkel exponential model (GEXPM). Cy5.5-GX1 specifically targeted tumor both in vitro and in vivo. We obtained similar quantification results of Bp (GARTM Bp = 0.582 ± 0.2655, SRTM Bp = 0.618 ± 0.2923), and obtained a good linear relation between the Bp value and the SKRC value. Our results indicate that the SKRC value is more suitable for an early-stage kinetic data analysis, and the Bp value depicts kinetic characteristics under the equilibrium state. Dynamic fluorescence imaging in conjunction with various kinetic models are optimal tools to quantify molecular specificity of the Cy5.5-GX1 probe in vivo. PMID:27446643

  5. 21 CFR 177.1050 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... rubber consisting of (i) 8-12 parts of butadiene/styrene elastomer containing 77-82 parts by weight of... by the method titled, “Determination of β-Dodecyl-mercaptopropionitrile in NR-16 Polymer,” which is... infrared spectro-photo-metric method titled “Infrared Spectro-photo-metric Determination of...

  6. 21 CFR 177.1050 - Acrylonitrile/styrene copoly-mer modified with butadiene/styrene elastomer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... parts by weight of a grafted rubber consisting of (i) 8-12 parts of butadiene/styrene elastomer...-mercaptopropionitrile in NR-16 Polymer,” which is incorporated by reference. Copies are available from the Center for... Determination of Polymer Extracted from Borex ® 210 Resin Pellets,” which is incorporated by reference....

  7. Proglacial sediment supply and channel evolution of the Arveyron of the Mer de Glace since the early 20th c.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthet, Johan; Astrade, Laurent

    2015-04-01

    Glacier retreat in the Alps, from the end of the Little Ice Age (LIA) to now, has released large sediment-covered areas. Those rock debris are potential massive sediment supply which could increase proglacial stream activity and worry river managers and authorities. However, because of the ice shrinkage, proglacial hydrographic pattern in the headwater is evolving. The connexion between morainic sediments and proglacial streams is thus moving. The goal of our study is to understand the evolution of sediment sources and their level of connectivity with the proglacial streams located on the French side of the Mont-Blanc massif (Chamonix Valley). We have used the Connectivity Index (IC) wich is a geostatistic method based on lidar DEM for assessing the probability for the sediment- covered areas to be connected to a certain outlet. Then, we have kept only the IC which could be supplied by the potential glacial meltwater with the LIA and 2008 glacier extension. Unfortunately, available lidar DEM does not cover the entire study area. Nevertheless, it is sufficient to get partial or full results on different glacier types: valley glacier, cirque glacier, etc. Results are checked using the mapping of - active or not - gullies and through the analyse of the large historical picture collection available in which it is possible to identify the past active sediment sources. Results show some explicit processes such as the contraction of the sediment sources inside morainic vallums whereas the outer moraine side was active during the LIA. Generally, results suggest a disconnection trend between sediment sources and the trunk valley. These results seem to be confirmed by a general tendency of decreasing activity of proglacial streams which is observed in the Chamonix valley. Even if this method shows some bias, it represents an interesting semi-quantitative and geographic approach to assess past proglacial sediment sources thanks to glacier extensions. It is also possible to imagine other applications using this method such as isolated the IC from the lithology or the nature of sediment sources.

  8. Field Reconnaissance Geologic Mapping of the Columbia Hills, Mars: Results from MER Spirit and MRO HiRISE Observations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crumpler, L.S.; Arvidson, R. E.; Squyres, S. W.; McCoy, T.; Yingst, A.; Ruff, S.; Farrand, W.; McSween, Y.; Powell, M.; Ming, D. W.; Morris, R.V.; Bell, J.F., III; Grant, J.; Greeley, R.; DesMarais, D.; Schmidt, M.; Cabrol, N.A.; Haldemann, A.; Lewis, Kevin W.; Wang, A.E.; Schroder, C.; Blaney, D.; Cohen, B.; Yen, A.; Farmer, J.; Gellert, Ralf; Guinness, E.A.; Herkenhoff, K. E.; Johnson, J. R.; Klingelhofer, G.; McEwen, A.; Rice, J. W., Jr.; Rice, M.; deSouza, P.; Hurowitz, J.

    2011-01-01

    Chemical, mineralogic, and lithologic ground truth was acquired for the first time on Mars in terrain units mapped using orbital Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (MRO HiRISE) image data. Examination of several dozen outcrops shows that Mars is geologically complex at meter length scales, the record of its geologic history is well exposed, stratigraphic units may be identified and correlated across significant areas on the ground, and outcrops and geologic relationships between materials may be analyzed with techniques commonly employed in terrestrial field geology. Despite their burial during the course of Martian geologic time by widespread epiclastic materials, mobile fines, and fall deposits, the selective exhumation of deep and well-preserved geologic units has exposed undisturbed outcrops, stratigraphic sections, and structural information much as they are preserved and exposed on Earth. A rich geologic record awaits skilled future field investigators on Mars. The correlation of ground observations and orbital images enables construction of a corresponding geologic reconnaissance map. Most of the outcrops visited are interpreted to be pyroclastic, impactite, and epiclastic deposits overlying an unexposed substrate, probably related to a modified Gusev crater central peak. Fluids have altered chemistry and mineralogy of these protoliths in degrees that vary substantially within the same map unit. Examination of the rocks exposed above and below the major unconformity between the plains lavas and the Columbia Hills directly confirms the general conclusion from remote sensing in previous studies over past years that the early history of Mars was a time of more intense deposition and modification of the surface. Although the availability of fluids and the chemical and mineral activity declined from this early period, significant later volcanism and fluid convection enabled additional, if localized, chemical activity.

  9. Estimation of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci genome size based on k-mer and flow cytometry analyses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Whiteflies, Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae), are one of the most important agricultural insect pests in the world. These phloem-feeding insects can colonize over 500 crop plants worldwide and inflict severe economic losses, mainly through the transmission of pathogenic viruses. Surprisingl...

  10. Strength and deformability of light-toned layered deposits observed by MER Opportunity: Eagle to Erebus craters, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Okubo, Chris H.

    2007-10-01

    Quantifying host rock deformation is vital to understanding the geologic evolution and productivity of subsurface fluid reservoirs. In support of on-going characterization of fracture controlled fluid flow through the light-toned layered deposits on Mars, key parameters of strength and deformability are derived from Microscopic Imager and Rock Abrasion Tool data collected by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity in Meridiani Planum. Analysis of 21 targets of light-toned layered deposits yields a median apparent porosity of 0.25. Additional physical parameters for each target are derived from these porosity measurements. The median value of unconfined compressive strength is 11.23 MPa, Young's modulus is 1.86 GPa, and the brittle-ductile transition pressure is 8.77 MPa.

  11. Affinity of aptamers binding 33-mer gliadin peptide and gluten proteins: Influence of immobilization and labeling tags.

    PubMed

    Amaya-González, Sonia; López-López, Laura; Miranda-Castro, Rebeca; de-los-Santos-Álvarez, Noemí; Miranda-Ordieres, Arturo José; Lobo-Castañón, María Jesús

    2015-05-11

    Aptamers are starting to increase the reagents tool box to develop more sensitive and reliable methods for food allergens. In most of these assays, aptamers have to be modified for detection and/or immobilization purposes. To take full advantage of their affinity, which decisively influence the detectability, these modifications must be faced rationally. In this work, a recently developed aptamer for an immunotoxic peptide of gliadin associated to celiac disease is used in different configurations and modified with various markers and anchored groups to evaluate the influence of such modifications on the real affinity. The interaction in solution with the peptide is strong for a relatively small molecule (Kd = 45 ± 10 nM, 17 °C) and slightly stronger than that for the immobilized intact protein due to a cooperative binding effect. Comparatively, while only minor differences were found when the peptide or the aptamer were immobilized, labeling with a biotin resulted preferable over fluorescein (Kd = 102 ± 11 vs 208 ± 54 nM, 25 °C). These findings are of prime importance for the design of an aptamer-based analytical method for gluten quantification. PMID:25911431

  12. Rigorous Photogrammetric Processing of HiRISE Stereo Images for Topographic and Geomorphologic Analysis at MER landing sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, R.; di, K.; Hwangbo, J.; Chen, Y.

    2007-12-01

    High-precision topographic information is critical to Mars surface exploration. Such information can be derived from both orbital and ground rover data. The availability of HiRISE stereo images makes a great progress in high resolution imaging and topographic and morphological information derivation. This presentation gives the necessary rigorous photogrammetric model for HiRISE stereo image processing and results achieved at the Mars Exploration Rover mission sites. HiRISE is a push-broom imaging sensor. For short segments of the orbital trajectory, 2nd-order polynomials can be used to model change in the exterior orientation (EO) parameters with respect to time. Since all of the 14 CCD lines (10 red, 2 blue-green and 2 NIR) share the same EO parameters at a specific time, only one set of polynomial parameters is needed to model the EO parameters for all the CCD arrays. The orbit's initial position and pointing angles are provided in the SPICE kernels. For any given ephemeris time, the EO parameters can be retrieved by interpolating the spacecraft's trajectory and pointing vectors. Based on the developed rigorous sensor model, we have developed a method for bundle adjustment (BA) of HiRISE stereo images that removes or reduces measurement inconsistency and improves mapping precision. We have also developed a hierarchical stereo matching process. Based on the original images, an image pyramid with 5 levels is constructed by sub-sampling of each previous level. Interest points are generated by Foerstner operator at every image scale. Matching starts from the images of the lowest resolution; results are transferred to the next higher level, with more interest points being extracted and matched. After matching the highest resolution images, evenly distributed matched interest points are selected as tie points between the stereo images. In the end, grid points (4-pixel spacing) are defined and matched to generate a DTM of the terrain. Using the HiRISE images TRA_000873_1780 and PSP_001414_1780 of Victoria Crater, 136 evenly distributed tie points and 135 check points were automatically selected for BA. Before BA, the mean residual in the along- track direction was 24.6 pixels with a standard deviation of 0.77 pixel, and the mean residual in the cross-track direction was 0.017 pixel with a standard deviation of 0.23 pixel. After BA, the mean residual in the along-track and cross-track directions are 0.30 pixel and 0.0047 pixel, respectively, with standard deviations of 0.37 pixel and 0.024 pixel. This improved precision ensures the high quality of topographic and morphological information to be derived. Currently, we are processing a stereo pair of HiRISE images that cover Husband Hill and the Home Plate area. The presentation should provide more detailed information and results.

  13. Field Reconnaissance Geologic Mapping of the Columbia Hills, Gusev Crater from MER Spirit Rover and HiRISE Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crumpler, L.; Arvidson, R.; Blaney, D.; Cabrol, N.; Desouza, P.; Farrand, W.; Farmer, J.; Greeley, R.; Hurowitz, J.; Lewis, K.; McCoy, T. J.; McEwen, A. S.; McSween, H.; Ming, D. W.; Morris, R. V.; Rice, J. W.; Rice, M.; Ruff, S. W.; Schmidt, M.; Schröder, C.; Squyres, S. W.; Yen, A.; Yingst, A.

    2009-03-01

    This study presents the results of the first field reconnaissance geologic mapping on another planetary surface. We show that geologic units on Mars are complex like their terrestrial counterparts, but can mapped at human and rover scales of observation.

  14. Genome Sequence of Photobacterium halotolerans MELD1, with Mercury Reductase (merA), Isolated from Phragmites australis

    PubMed Central

    Mathew, Dony Chacko; Mathew, Gincy Marina; Gicana, Ronnie Gicaraya

    2015-01-01

    Here, we present the whole-genome sequence of Photobacterium halotolerans strain, MELD1, isolated from the roots of a terrestrial plant Phragmites australis grown in soil heavily contaminated with mercury and dioxin. The genome provides further insight into the adaptation of bacteria to the toxic environment from where it was isolated. PMID:26044418

  15. Comparing Apollo and Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Operations Paradigms for Human Exploration During NASA Desert-Rats Science Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yingst, R. A.; Cohen, B. A.; Ming, D. W.; Eppler, D. B.

    2011-01-01

    NASA's Desert Research and Technology Studies (D-RATS) field test is one of several analog tests that NASA conducts each year to combine operations development, technology advances and science under planetary surface conditions. The D-RATS focus is testing preliminary operational concepts for extravehicular activity (EVA) systems in the field using simulated surface operations and EVA hardware and procedures. For 2010 hardware included the Space Exploration Vehicles, Habitat Demonstration Units, Tri-ATHLETE, and a suite of new geology sample collection tools, including a self-contained GeoLab glove box for conducting in-field analysis of various collected rock samples. The D-RATS activities develop technical skills and experience for the mission planners, engineers, scientists, technicians, and astronauts responsible for realizing the goals of exploring planetary surfaces.

  16. Single molecule analysis of DNA wrapping and looping by a circular 14mer wheel of the bacteriophage 186 CI repressor.

    PubMed

    Wang, Haowei; Dodd, Ian B; Dunlap, David D; Shearwin, Keith E; Finzi, Laura

    2013-06-01

    The lytic-lysogenic decision in bacteriophage 186 is governed by the 186 CI repressor protein in a unique way. The 186 CI is proposed to form a wheel-like oligomer that can mediate either wrapped or looped nucleoprotein complexes to provide the cooperative and competitive interactions needed for regulation. Although consistent with structural, biochemical and gene expression data, many aspects of this model are based on inference. Here, we use atomic force microscopy (AFM) to reveal the various predicted wrapped and looped species, and new ones, for CI regulation of lytic and lysogenic transcription. Automated AFM analysis showed CI particles of the predicted dimensions on the DNA, with CI multimerization favoured by DNA binding. Measurement of the length of the wrapped DNA segments indicated that CI may move on the DNA, wrapping or releasing DNA on either side of the wheel. Tethered particle motion experiments were consistent with wrapping and looping of DNA by CI in solution, where in contrast to λ repressor, the looped species were exceptionally stable. The CI regulatory system provides an intriguing comparison with that of nucleosomes, which share the ability to wrap and release similar sized segments of DNA. PMID:23620280

  17. A Coverage Criterion for Spaced Seeds and Its Applications to Support Vector Machine String Kernels and k-Mer Distances

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Donald E.K.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Spaced seeds have been recently shown to not only detect more alignments, but also to give a more accurate measure of phylogenetic distances, and to provide a lower misclassification rate when used with Support Vector Machines (SVMs). We confirm by independent experiments these two results, and propose in this article to use a coverage criterion to measure the seed efficiency in both cases in order to design better seed patterns. We show first how this coverage criterion can be directly measured by a full automaton-based approach. We then illustrate how this criterion performs when compared with two other criteria frequently used, namely the single-hit and multiple-hit criteria, through correlation coefficients with the correct classification/the true distance. At the end, for alignment-free distances, we propose an extension by adopting the coverage criterion, show how it performs, and indicate how it can be efficiently computed. PMID:25393923

  18. "Disturbing the Waters": Using Relational Knowledge to Explore Methodology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reyes, Cynthia C.

    2008-01-01

    In this article, the author examines her racial identity and its impact on her interpretation of the schooling experiences of a 10th grade Latina in an ethnographic case study. Prior to this study, the author had been working in a university-based family literacy program where she met Zulmy's mother, Manuela. Due to her experience as a middle…

  19. Thermal Design and Flight Experience of the Mars Exploration Rover Spacecraft Computer-Controlled, Propulsion Line Heaters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Novak, Keith; Kinsella, Gary; Krylo, Robert; Sunada, Eric

    2004-01-01

    The viewgraph presentation examines propulsion line heater design and problems in the Mars Rover. Topics include a Mars Exploration Rover (MER) project description and MER spacecraft configuration, mission overview, MER cruise stage hardware, thermal design drivers in the propulsion lines, propulsion line control set points prior to launch, MER A and B flight trajectories, MER A early and mid cruise flight experience, MER A and B mid cruise flight experience, MER B late cruise flight experience, and lessons learned

  20. A phage display selected 7-mer peptide inhibitor of the Tannerella forsythia metalloprotease-like enzyme Karilysin can be truncated to Ser-Trp-Phe-Pro.

    PubMed

    Skottrup, Peter Durand; Sørensen, Grete; Ksiazek, Miroslaw; Potempa, Jan; Riise, Erik

    2012-01-01

    Tannerella forsythia is a gram-negative bacteria, which is strongly associated with the development of periodontal disease. Karilysin is a newly identified metalloprotease-like enzyme, that is secreted from T. forsythia. Karilysin modulates the host immune response and is therefore considered a likely drug target. In this study peptides were selected towards the catalytic domain from Karilysin (Kly18) by phage display. The peptides were linear with low micromolar binding affinities. The two best binders (peptide14 and peptide15), shared the consensus sequence XWFPXXXGGG. A peptide15 fusion with Maltose Binding protein (MBP) was produced with peptide15 fused to the N-terminus of MBP. The peptide15-MBP was expressed in E. coli and the purified fusion-protein was used to verify Kly18 specific binding. Chemically synthesised peptide15 (SWFPLRSGGG) could inhibit the enzymatic activity of both Kly18 and intact Karilysin (Kly48). Furthermore, peptide15 could slow down the autoprocessing of intact Kly48 to Kly18. The WFP motif was important for inhibition and a truncation study further demonstrated that the N-terminal serine was also essential for Kly18 inhibition. The SWFP peptide had a Ki value in the low micromolar range, which was similar to the intact peptide15. In conclusion SWFP is the first reported inhibitor of Karilysin and can be used as a valuable tool in structure-function studies of Karilysin. PMID:23119051

  1. Solvent–amino acid interaction energies in three-dimensional-lattice Monte Carlo simulations of a model 27-mer protein: Folding thermodynamics and kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Leonhard, Kai; Prausnitz, John M.; Radke, Clayton J.

    2004-01-01

    Amino acid residue–solvent interactions are required for lattice Monte Carlo simulations of model proteins in water. In this study, we propose an interaction-energy scale that is based on the interaction scale by Miyazawa and Jernigan. It permits systematic variation of the amino acid–solvent interactions by introducing a contrast parameter for the hydrophobicity, Cs, and a mean attraction parameter for the amino acids, ω. Changes in the interaction energies strongly affect many protein properties. We present an optimized energy parameter set for best representing realistic behavior typical for many proteins (fast folding and high cooperativity for single chains). Our optimal parameters feature a much weaker hydrophobicity contrast and mean attraction than does the original interaction scale. The proposed interaction scale is designed for calculating the behavior of proteins in bulk and at interfaces as a function of solvent characteristics, as well as protein size and sequence. PMID:14739322

  2. SlopMap: a software application tool for quick and flexible identification of similar sequences using exact k-mer matching.

    PubMed

    Zhbannikov, Ilya Y; Hunter, Samuel S; Settles, Matthew L; Foster, James A

    2013-08-01

    With the advent of Next-Generation (NG) sequencing, it has become possible to sequence a entire genomes quickly and inexpensively. However, in some experiments one only needs to extract and assembly a portion of the sequence reads, for example when performing transcriptome studies, sequencing mitochondrial genomes, or characterizing exomes. With the raw DNA-library of a complete genome it would appear to be a trivial problem to identify reads of interest. But it is not always easy to incorporate well-known tools such as BLAST, BLAT, Bowtie, and SOAP directly into a bioinformatics pipelines before the assembly stage, either due to incompatibility with the assembler's file inputs, or because it is desirable to incorporate information that must be extracted separately. For example, in order to incorporate flowgrams from a Roche 454 sequencer into the Newbler assembler it is necessary to first extract them from the original SFF files. We present SlopMap, a bioinformatics software utility that allows quickly identification similar to the provided reference reads from either Roche 454 or Illumnia DNA library. With simple and intuitive command-line interface along with file output formats compatible to assembly programs, SlopMap can be directly embedded to biological data processing pipeline without any additional programming work. In addition, SlopMap preserves flowgram information needed for Roche 454 assembler. PMID:24404406

  3. SlopMap: a software application tool for quick and flexible identification of similar sequences using exact k-mer matching

    PubMed Central

    Zhbannikov, Ilya Y.; Hunter, Samuel S.; Settles, Matthew L.; Foster, James A.

    2013-01-01

    With the advent of Next-Generation (NG) sequencing, it has become possible to sequence a entire genomes quickly and inexpensively. However, in some experiments one only needs to extract and assembly a portion of the sequence reads, for example when performing transcriptome studies, sequencing mitochondrial genomes, or characterizing exomes. With the raw DNA-library of a complete genome it would appear to be a trivial problem to identify reads of interest. But it is not always easy to incorporate well-known tools such as BLAST, BLAT, Bowtie, and SOAP directly into a bioinformatics pipelines before the assembly stage, either due to incompatibility with the assembler’s file inputs, or because it is desirable to incorporate information that must be extracted separately. For example, in order to incorporate flowgrams from a Roche 454 sequencer into the Newbler assembler it is necessary to first extract them from the original SFF files. We present SlopMap, a bioinformatics software utility that allows quickly identification similar to the provided reference reads from either Roche 454 or Illumnia DNA library. With simple and intuitive command-line interface along with file output formats compatible to assembly programs, SlopMap can be directly embedded to biological data processing pipeline without any additional programming work. In addition, SlopMap preserves flowgram information needed for Roche 454 assembler. PMID:24404406

  4. Trichinella spiralis: intranasal immunization with attenuated Salmonella enterica carrying a gp43 antigen-derived 30mer epitope elicits protection in BALB/c mice.

    PubMed

    Pompa-Mera, E N; Yépez-Mulia, L; Ocaña-Mondragón, A; García-Zepeda, E A; Ortega-Pierres, G; González-Bonilla, C R

    2011-12-01

    Trichinellosis is a public health problem and is considered an emergent/re-emergent disease in various countries. The etiological agent of trichinellosis is the nematode Trichinella, which infects domestic animals such as pigs and horses, as well as wild animals and humans. A veterinary vaccine could be an option to control the disease in domestic animals. Although several vaccine candidates have shown promising results, a vaccine against trichinellosis remains unavailable to date. Attenuated Salmonella strains are especially attractive live vectors because they elicit mucosal immunity, which is known to be important for the control of Trichinella spiralis infection at the intestinal level and can be administered by oral or intranasal routes. In this study, the autotransporter ShdA was used to display, on the surface of the Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium SL3261, the 210-239 amino acid epitope, (designated as Ag30) derived from the 43 kDa glycoprotein of T. spiralis muscle larvae. The fusion protein elicited antibodies in BALB/c mice that were able to recognize the native epitope on the surface of T. spiralis muscle larvae. Mice immunized by intranasal route with the recombinant Salmonella induced a protective immune response against the T. spiralis challenge, reducing by 61.83% the adult burden at day eight postinfection. This immune response was characterized by the induction of antigen-specific IgG1 and of IL-5 production. This study demonstrates the usefulness of Salmonella as a carrier of nematode epitopes providing a surface display system for intestinal parasite vaccine applications. PMID:21907709

  5. A Phage Display Selected 7-mer Peptide Inhibitor of the Tannerella forsythia Metalloprotease-Like Enzyme Karilysin can be Truncated to Ser-Trp-Phe-Pro

    PubMed Central

    Skottrup, Peter Durand; Sørensen, Grete; Ksiazek, Miroslaw; Potempa, Jan; Riise, Erik

    2012-01-01

    Tannerella forsythia is a gram-negative bacteria, which is strongly associated with the development of periodontal disease. Karilysin is a newly identified metalloprotease-like enzyme, that is secreted from T. forsythia. Karilysin modulates the host immune response and is therefore considered a likely drug target. In this study peptides were selected towards the catalytic domain from Karilysin (Kly18) by phage display. The peptides were linear with low micromolar binding affinities. The two best binders (peptide14 and peptide15), shared the consensus sequence XWFPXXXGGG. A peptide15 fusion with Maltose Binding protein (MBP) was produced with peptide15 fused to the N-terminus of MBP. The peptide15-MBP was expressed in E. coli and the purified fusion-protein was used to verify Kly18 specific binding. Chemically synthesised peptide15 (SWFPLRSGGG) could inhibit the enzymatic activity of both Kly18 and intact Karilysin (Kly48). Furthermore, peptide15 could slow down the autoprocessing of intact Kly48 to Kly18. The WFP motif was important for inhibition and a truncation study further demonstrated that the N-terminal serine was also essential for Kly18 inhibition. The SWFP peptide had a Ki value in the low micromolar range, which was similar to the intact peptide15. In conclusion SWFP is the first reported inhibitor of Karilysin and can be used as a valuable tool in structure-function studies of Karilysin. PMID:23119051

  6. [Treatment of fractures of the mandibular condyle. Experiences at the Department of Oral Medicine and Maxillofacial Surgery at Toulon-La-Seyne/Mer].

    PubMed

    Ribault, J Y; Lestage, F; Gacon, J; Vittel, P; Roubaudi, G; Pernice, L; Jeannenot, J; Laroche, D; Fourestier, J

    1997-11-01

    The fractures of the gnathic condyle are constantly increasing due to the violent impact on the chine. The functional treatment is essential for good results whereas the restitution of a functional joint, i.e. teeth that engage into one another, is satisfactory for the patient as it can also justify a possible surgical reduction in such cases when significant shifts of fragments resulting from the fractures are present. PMID:9471694

  7. Analysis of 6.4 KEV Moessbauer Spectra Obtained with MIMOS II on MER on Cobbles at Meridiani Planum, Mars and Considerations on Penetration Depths

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleischer, I.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Morris, R. V.; Schroder, C.; Rodionov, D.; deSouza, P.

    2008-01-01

    The miniaturized Moessbauer (MB) spectrometers MIMOS II [1] on board of the two Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity have obtained more than 600 spectra of more than 300 different rock and soil targets [2-7]. Both instruments have simultaneously collected 6.4 keV X-ray and 14.4 keV .-ray spectra in backscattering geometry [1]. With Spirit's MB spectrometer, 6.4 keV and 14.4 keV spectra have been obtained for all targets through sol 461. After this date, only 14.4 keV spectra were collected. With Opportunity's spectrometer, 6.4 keV and 14.4 keV spectra have been collected for all targets to date. The Fe-mineralogy of rock and soil targets at both landing sites reported to date has been exclusively extracted from 14.4 keV spectra [2-5]. The comparison of 6.4 keV and 14.4 keV spectra provides depth selective information about a sample, but interpretation is not always straightforward [8].

  8. Strategy for the In Situ Search of Evaporite and Carbonate Deposits in Gusev Crater Within the 2003 MER A Landing Ellipse

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grin, E. A.; Cabrol, N. A.; Leone, G.; Orofino, V.

    2002-01-01

    Topographic profiles and MOC images suggest that the flat floor of Gusev results from sediment deposition in the absence of strong sublacustrine currents. This setting is favorable to preserve undisturbed sedimentary sequences and identify carbonates and evaporites in the landing ellipse. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  9. The influence of peptide impurity profiles on functional tissue-organ bath response: the 11-mer peptide INSL6[151-161] case.

    PubMed

    Verbeken, Mathieu; Wynendaele, Evelien; Lefebvre, Romain A; Goossens, Els; Spiegeleer, Bart De

    2012-02-15

    Bioactive peptides have great pharmaceutical potential as nutraceuticals, diagnostics, and therapeutic drugs in several clinical areas. Thus, the search for novel lead peptides with a biological function has attracted renewed interest. Crude peptide material (i.e., ~70% purity) of INSL6[151-161] (NH₂-FRSLFWGNHSQ-COOH) was found to trigger a contractile response in guinea pig ileum longitudinal smooth muscle preparations using tissue-organ baths. However, the purified peptide (i.e., ≥ 95% purity) had no effect on this model. Further investigation with crude materials from other suppliers, with purities ranging between 50% and 80%, indicated that the crude products gave a false-positive functional tissue-organ bath conclusion. These observations question the functionality conclusions when using crude-purity peptide materials; during the initial research or discovery phase, peptide quality is generally neglected, possibly leading to misinterpretation of biological results due to by-products from peptide synthesis and, thus, wrong fail/pass decisions. Therefore, we strongly recommend appropriate quality control testing before using any peptides for initial biomedical research or discovery purposes. PMID:22033292

  10. RELATIONSHIPS OF HG(II) VOLATILIZATION FROM A FRESHWATER POND TO ABUNDANCE OF MER GENES IN THE GENE POOL OF THE INDIGENOUS MICROBIAL COMMUNITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The role of biological activities in the reduction and volatilization of Hg(II) from a polluted pond was investigated. lemental mercury was evolved from pond water immediately following spiking with 203 Hg(NO3)2, whereas a lag period of 36 hr was required in control samples colle...

  11. Short communication: Measuring the angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitory activity of an 8-amino acid (8mer) fragment of the C12 antihypertensive peptide

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An eight amino acid fragment (PFPEVFGK) of a known milk protein-derived antihypertensive peptide was synthesized by microwave-assisted solid phase peptide synthesis and purified by reverse phase HPLC. Its ability to inhibit the angiotensin-converting enzyme was assessed and compared to that of the ...

  12. Combined effects of one 8-hydroxyquinoline/picolinate and "CH"/N substitutions on the geometry, electronic structure and optical properties of mer-Alq(3).

    PubMed

    Gahungu, Godefroid; Zhang, Jingping; Ntakarutimana, Vestine; Gahungu, Nestor

    2010-01-14

    With the aim of evaluating the combined effect of one 8-hydroxyquinoline (q)/picolinate (p) and "CH"/N substitutions on the molecular geometry, electronic structure, and optical properties of tris-(8-hydroxyquinoline)aluminum [Alq(3)], the density functional theory (B3LYP) and time-dependent density functional theory (TD-B3LYP), using the 6-31G(d) and 3-21+G(d,p) basis sets were applied on Alq(3), Alq(2)p, and its "CH"/N-substitution derivatives. A comparison of the optimized ground-state (S(0)) geometries has shown that the molecular shape is conserved upon such a substitution. On the basis of the frontier molecular orbital and gap energy (E(g)) calculations, it was shown that, comparatively to the pristine Alq(2)p (and to the original parent Alq(3)), the HOMO and LUMO are stabilized, the net effect being an increasing or a decreasing E(g), depending on the position of the substituted group. The substitution of q(B) by p (from Alq(3) to Alq(2)p) was also found to induce the same feature. Starting from the S(0) and S(1) (first excited state) geometries, the effect of the substitution on the absorption (and emission) spectra was evaluated. It was found that the "CH"/N substitution in different positions on the two 8-hydroxyquinoline ligands may also constitute an efficient approach of tuning the Alq(2)p emitting color. In comparison with both Alq(3) and Alq(2)p, an important blue shift was predicted for the 5-substituted derivative, an important red shift being observed for the 4-substituted one. Also, relatively significant blue and red shifts were predicted for the 7- and 2-substituted derivatives. Finally, revisiting the correlation between the spectrum shifts and the metal-ligand bonding, our recent findings (2) were confirmed. PMID:19904976

  13. Weathering of Basaltic Rocks from the Gusev Plains up into the Columbia Hills from the Perspective of the MER Mossbauer Spectrometer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schroeder, C.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Morris, R. V.; Rodionov, D. S.; deSouza, P. A.; Ming, D. W.; Yen, A. S.; Gellert, R.; Bell, J. F., III

    2005-01-01

    Rocks on the ejecta blanket of Bonneville crater and along Spirit s traverse over the Gusev plains towards the Columbia Hills are angular and strewn across the surface. They have a basaltic composition [1,2], and their Mossbauer spectra are dominated by an olivine doublet [1]. The ubiquitous presence of abundant olivine in rocks and in surrounding soil suggests that physical rather than chemical weathering processes currently dominate the plains at Gusev crater [1]. However, MB spectra of rocks and outcrops in the Columbia Hills suggest more aggressive alteration processes have occurred. Ascending into the hills, Spirit encountered outcrop and rocks exhibiting layered structures. Some scattered rocks at the foot of the Columbia Hills appeared "rotten" or highly altered by physical and/or chemical processes (fig. 1). Mossbauer spectra of those rocks show a decrease in olivine accompanied by an increase in the Fe-oxides magnetite, hematite, and nanophase Fe3+ -oxides (fig. 2), suggesting that chemical weathering processes in the presence of water have altered these rocks and outcrops.

  14. Role of the semi-conserved histidine residue in the light-sensing domain of LitR, a MerR-type photosensory transcriptional regulator.

    PubMed

    Takano, Hideaki; Mise, Kou; Maruyama, Takafumi; Hagiwara, Kenta; Ueda, Kenji

    2016-08-01

    The LitR/CarH protein family transcriptional regulator is a new type of photoreceptor based on the function of adenosyl B12 (AdoB12) as a light-sensitive ligand. Here, we studied a semi-conserved histidine residue (His132) in the light-sensing (AdoB12-binding) domain at the C-terminus of LitR from a thermophilic Gram-negative bacterium, Thermus thermophilus HB27. The in vivo mutation of His132 within LitR caused a reduction in the rate of carotenoid production in response to illumination. BIAcore analysis revealed that the illuminated-LitRH132A possesses high DNA-binding activity compared to the wild-type protein. The subunit structure analysis showed that LitRH132A performed an incomplete subunit dissociation. The ability of LitRH132A to associate with AdoB12 was reduced compared with that of the wild-type protein in an equilibration dialysis experiment. Overall, these results suggest that His132 of LitR is involved in the association with AdoB12 as well as the light-sensitive DNA-binding activity based on oligomer dissociation. PMID:27283316

  15. Construction of Insulin 18-mer Nanoassemblies Driven by Coordination to Iron(II) and Zinc(II) Ions at Distinct Sites.

    PubMed

    Munch, Henrik K; Nygaard, Jesper; Christensen, Niels Johan; Engelbrekt, Christian; Østergaard, Mads; Porsgaard, Trine; Hoeg-Jensen, Thomas; Zhang, Jingdong; Arleth, Lise; Thulstrup, Peter W; Jensen, Knud J

    2016-02-12

    Controlled self-assembly (SA) of proteins offers the possibility to tune their properties or to create new materials. Herein, we present the synthesis of a modified human insulin (HI) with two distinct metal-ion binding sites, one native, the other abiotic, enabling hierarchical SA through coordination with two different metal ions. Selective attachment of an abiotic 2,2'-bipyridine (bipy) ligand to HI, yielding HI-bipy, enabled Zn(II)-binding hexamers to SA into trimers of hexamers, [[HI-bipy]6]3, driven by octahedral coordination to a Fe(II)  ion. The structures were studied in solution by small-angle X-ray scattering and on surfaces with AFM. The abiotic metal ligand had a higher affinity for Fe(II) than Zn(II)  ions, enabling control of the hexamer formation with Zn(II) and the formation of trimers of hexamers with Fe(II)  ions. This precise control of protein SA to give oligomers of oligomers provides nanoscale structures with potential applications in nanomedicine. PMID:26762534

  16. Transposon tagging of a male-sterility, female-sterility gene, St8, revealed that the meiotic MER3 DNA helicase activity is essential for fertility in soybean

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The W4 locus in soybean encodes a dihydroflavonol-4-reductase (DFR2) that regulates pigmentation patterns in flowers and hypocotyl. The mutable w4-m allele that governs variegated flowers has arisen through insertion of a CACTA-type transposable element, Tgm9, in DFR2. In the w4-m line, reversion fr...

  17. 8.1.6.10 Zeolites with GIS-, PHI-, MER-, MON-, MAZ-, EON-, PAU-, LTL-, MOZ-, and LIT-type framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burzo, E.

    This document is part of Subvolume I6 'Tectosilicates', Part γ of Volume 27 'Magnetic Properties of Non-Metallic Inorganic Compounds Based on Transition Elements' of Landolt-Börnstein Group III 'Condensed Matter'.

  18. Guidelines for the Laboratory Diagnosis of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Sung, Heungsup; Kim, Sinyoung; Seong, Moon-Woo; Yong, Dongeun; Kim, Jae-Seok; Lee, Mi-Kyung; Choi, Jong-Rak; Kim, Jeong-Ho

    2016-01-01

    The recent outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in Korea was unexpected that laboratory response had to be built up urgently during the outbreak. The outbreak was almost all healthcare-associated, which was aggravated by lack of availability in laboratory diagnosis of MERS-CoV on site. On behalf of the MERS joint public and private sector response committee (MERS Joint committee), the Korean Society for Laboratory Medicine (KSLM) launched a MERS response task force (MERS KSLM TF) to facilitate clinical laboratories set up MERS molecular diagnosis. MERS TF established guidelines for laboratory diagnosis of MERS-CoV and provided it to all participating laboratories as the official guidance of MERS Joint committee. This guideline was used for procedure manual of molecular diagnosis of MERS-CoV and laboratory safety manual. PMID:27104019

  19. Guidelines for the Laboratory Diagnosis of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus in Korea.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyukmin; Ki, Chang-Seok; Sung, Heungsup; Kim, Sinyoung; Seong, Moon-Woo; Yong, Dongeun; Kim, Jae-Seok; Lee, Mi-Kyung; Kim, Mi-Na; Choi, Jong-Rak; Kim, Jeong-Ho

    2016-03-01

    The recent outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in Korea was unexpected that laboratory response had to be built up urgently during the outbreak. The outbreak was almost all healthcare-associated, which was aggravated by lack of availability in laboratory diagnosis of MERS-CoV on site. On behalf of the MERS joint public and private sector response committee (MERS Joint committee), the Korean Society for Laboratory Medicine (KSLM) launched a MERS response task force (MERS KSLM TF) to facilitate clinical laboratories set up MERS molecular diagnosis. MERS TF established guidelines for laboratory diagnosis of MERS-CoV and provided it to all participating laboratories as the official guidance of MERS Joint committee. This guideline was used for procedure manual of molecular diagnosis of MERS-CoV and laboratory safety manual. PMID:27104019

  20. Pointers from the Americas.

    PubMed

    Aragon-choudhury, P

    1992-01-01

    During a sharing session which took place at a conference sponsored by the Philippine Institute for Social Studies and Action in 1991, Peruvian Victoria Villanueva and US citizen Margaret Ann Schuller discussed their work. Schuller reported on her upcoming book entitled "Freedom from Violence: Women's Strategies Around the World." In addition to proposing a definition of violence against women, the book will include 12 case studies from Malaysia, Bolivia, Mexico, India, Pakistan, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Brazil, Zimbabwe, Chile, Africa, and Alaska describing how national organizations of women are dealing with the problem. An important advance is the development of a framework to look at the connection which exists between violence and health issues. Villanueva described the work of the Movimiento Manuela Ramos, which was organized informally to deal with reproductive rights and abortion and has since expanded to parent groups of women who defend legal and medical cases as paid paralegals. Manuela Ramos uses popular media, traditional drama, and even state television to publicize its issues. Manuela Ramos has accomplished important work on rape, unsafe abortion, and maternal mortality, but most importantly, the women involved with the organization have had the opportunity to develop their self-esteem. PMID:12288567

  1. Understanding and Enhancing the Use of Multiple External Representations in Chemistry Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Corradi, David; Elen, Jan; Clarebout, Geraldine

    2012-01-01

    Theories on learning with Multiple External Representations (MER) claim that low prior knowledge learners in science have difficulties using MER, which are seen as necessary to achieve a conceptual understanding. In two experiments, we analyze the mechanisms underlying the learning of chemistry with MER. Our first experiment focuses on how MER can…

  2. Intra- and supra­molecular inter­actions in cis,mer-diaqua­tris­(1H-imidazole-κN 3)(terephthalato-κO)cobalt(II) monohydrate

    PubMed Central

    Benkanoun, Aouaouche; Balegroune, Fadila; Guehria-Laïdoudi, Achoura; Dahaoui, Slimane; Lecomte, Claude

    2012-01-01

    In the title compound, [Co(C8H4O4)(C3H4N2)3(H2O)2]·H2O, the cisoid angles are in the range 85.59 (5)–93.56 (5)°, while two equal transoid angles deviate significantly from the ideal linear angle, the third being almost linear. One carboxyl­ate group is almost coplanar [1.23 (13)°] with the plane of its parent aromatic ring, although it has one O-atom donor involved in one coordination and one hydrogen bond as acceptor. The other carboxyl­ate group does not coordinate and is rotated out of this plane with a torsional twist of 17.27 (20)°. The coordination neutral entity, based on aqua ligands and two cyclic co-ligands seems, at first sight, monomeric. Strongly tight, via one intra­molecular hydrogen bond between aqua and carboxyl­ate O atoms, it brings out a quasi-planar six-membered ring around the CoII atom, turning the CoN3O3 coordination octa­hedron into a new building block. The rigidity of this feature associated with several hydrogen-bonded arrays yields an extended structure. In the resulting supra­molecular packing, a binuclear hydrated CoII assembly, built up from triple strands driven by different heterosynthons, embodies the synergy of coordination, covalent and hydrogen bonds. PMID:22589841

  3. Les possibilités et limitations de l'atomisation électrothermique en spectrométrie d'absorption atomique lors de l'analyse directe des metaux lourds dans l'eau de mer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoenig, M.; Wollast, R.

    This work shows the analytical possibilities of an electrothermal atomizer for the direct determination of trace metals in sea-water. The high background signals generated by the matrix perturb in particular volatile elements because of the low decomposition temperature allowed. In the case of cadmium, addition of ascorbic acid to the sample permits the modification of the atomization mechanism and the reduction of the optimum temperature. Under these conditions, absorption peak of the cadmium precedes the background absorption and consequently the analysis is no longer limited by the magnitude of the matrix signal: the determination of cadmium concentrations far below the μg -1 level is easily possible. Although the direct determination of the other elements should be in principle less disturbed by the background, the analytical performance is poorer than for cadmium. Limits of determination of the order from 0.1 to 1 μg -1 can be reached for chromium, copper and manganese. Lead and nickel appeared to be the most difficult elements; their direct determination is only possible in polluted coastal or estuarine waters. The injection of the sample as an aerosol into hot graphite tube showed to be well adapted to this kind of investigations. The simultaneous visualization of specific and background signals allows interpretations which until now were impossible with commercially available apparatus.

  4. Structure of an anti-HIV-1 hammerhead ribozyme complex with a 17-mer DNA substrate analog of HIV-1 gag RNA and a mechanism for the cleavage reaction: 750 MHz NMR and computer experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ojha, R. P.; Dhingra, M. M.; Sarma, M. H.; Myer, Y. P.; Setlik, R. F.; Shibata, M.; Kazim, A. L.; Ornstein, R. L.; Rein, R.; Turner, C. J.; Sarma, R. H.

    1997-01-01

    The structure of an anti-HIV-1 ribozyme-DNA abortive substrate complex was investigated by 750 MHz NMR and computer modeling experiments. The ribozyme was a chimeric molecule with 30 residues-18 DNA nucleotides, and 12 RNA residues in the conserved core. The DNA substrate analog had 17 residues. The chimeric ribozyme and the DNA substrate formed a shortened ribozyme-abortive substrate complex of 47 nucleotides with two DNA stems (stems I and III) and a loop consisting of the conserved core residues. Circular dichroism spectra showed that the DNA stems assume A-family conformation at the NMR concentration and a temperature of 15 degrees C, contrary to the conventional wisdom that DNA duplexes in aqueous solution populate entirely in the B-form. It is proposed that the A-family RNA residues at the core expand the A-family initiated at the core into the DNA stems because of the large free energy requirement for the formation of A/B junctions. Assignments of the base H8/H6 protons and H1' of the 47 residues were made by a NOESY walk. In addition to the methyl groups of all T's, the imino resonances of stems I and III and AH2's were assigned from appropriate NOESY walks. The extracted NMR data along with available crystallographic data, were used to derive a structural model of the complex. Stems I and III of the final model displayed a remarkable similarity to the A form of DNA; in stem III, a GC base pair was found to be moving into the floor of the minor groove defined by flanking AT pairs; data suggest the formation of a buckled rhombic structure with the adjacent pair; in addition, the base pair at the interface of stem III and the loop region displayed deformed geometry. The loop with the catalytic core, and the immediate region of the stems displayed conformational multiplicity within the NMR time scale. A catalytic mechanism for ribozyme action based on the derived structure, and consistent with biochemical data in the literature, is proposed. The complex between the anti HIV-1 gag ribozyme and its abortive DNA substrate manifests in the detection of a continuous track of A.T base pairs; this suggests that the interaction between the ribozyme and its DNA substrate is stronger than the one observed in the case of the free ribozyme where the bases in stem I and stem III regions interact strongly with the ribozyme core region (Sarma, R. H., et al. FEBS Letters 375, 317-23, 1995). The complex formation provides certain guidelines in the design of suitable therapeutic ribozymes. If the residues in the ribozyme stem regions interact with the conserved core, it may either prevent or interfere with the formation of a catalytically active tertiary structure.

  5. Structure of an anti-HIV-1 hammerhead ribozyme complex with a 17-mer DNA substrate analog of HIV-1 gag RNA and a mechanism for the cleavage reaction: 750 MHz NMR and computer experiments.

    PubMed

    Ojha, R P; Dhingra, M M; Sarma, M H; Myer, Y P; Setlik, R F; Shibata, M; Kazim, A L; Ornstein, R L; Rein, R; Turner, C J; Sarma, R H

    1997-10-01

    The structure of an anti-HIV-1 ribozyme-DNA abortive substrate complex was investigated by 750 MHz NMR and computer modeling experiments. The ribozyme was a chimeric molecule with 30 residues-18 DNA nucleotides, and 12 RNA residues in the conserved core. The DNA substrate analog had 17 residues. The chimeric ribozyme and the DNA substrate formed a shortened ribozyme-abortive substrate complex of 47 nucleotides with two DNA stems (stems I and III) and a loop consisting of the conserved core residues. Circular dichroism spectra showed that the DNA stems assume A-family conformation at the NMR concentration and a temperature of 15 degrees C, contrary to the conventional wisdom that DNA duplexes in aqueous solution populate entirely in the B-form. It is proposed that the A-family RNA residues at the core expand the A-family initiated at the core into the DNA stems because of the large free energy requirement for the formation of A/B junctions. Assignments of the base H8/H6 protons and H1' of the 47 residues were made by a NOESY walk. In addition to the methyl groups of all T's, the imino resonances of stems I and III and AH2's were assigned from appropriate NOESY walks. The extracted NMR data along with available crystallographic data, were used to derive a structural model of the complex. Stems I and III of the final model displayed a remarkable similarity to the A form of DNA; in stem III, a GC base pair was found to be moving into the floor of the minor groove defined by flanking AT pairs; data suggest the formation of a buckled rhombic structure with the adjacent pair; in addition, the base pair at the interface of stem III and the loop region displayed deformed geometry. The loop with the catalytic core, and the immediate region of the stems displayed conformational multiplicity within the NMR time scale. A catalytic mechanism for ribozyme action based on the derived structure, and consistent with biochemical data in the literature, is proposed. The complex between the anti HIV-1 gag ribozyme and its abortive DNA substrate manifests in the detection of a continuous track of A.T base pairs; this suggests that the interaction between the ribozyme and its DNA substrate is stronger than the one observed in the case of the free ribozyme where the bases in stem I and stem III regions interact strongly with the ribozyme core region (Sarma, R. H., et al. FEBS Letters 375, 317-23, 1995). The complex formation provides certain guidelines in the design of suitable therapeutic ribozymes. If the residues in the ribozyme stem regions interact with the conserved core, it may either prevent or interfere with the formation of a catalytically active tertiary structure. PMID:9399149

  6. Functions, Evolution, and Application of the Supramolecular Machines of Hg Detoxification

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Susan M.

    2009-11-27

    The bacterial mercury resistance (mer) operon functions in Hg biogeochemistry and bioremediation by converting reactive inorganic [Hg(II)] and organic [RHg(I)] mercurials to relatively inert monoatomic mercury vapor, Hg(0). Its genes regulate expression (MerR, MerD, MerOP), import Hg(II) (MerT, MerP, and MerC), and demethylate (MerB) and reduce (MerA) mercurials. We focus on how these components interact with each other and with the host cell to allow cells to survive and detoxify Hg compounds. Understanding how this ubiquitous detoxification system fits into the biology and ecology of its bacterial host is essential to guide interventions that support and enhance Hg remediation. At a more basic level, studies of interactions between the metal ion trafficking proteins in this pathway provide insights into general mechanisms used by proteins in pathways involved in trafficking of other metal ions in cells of all types of organisms, including pathways for essential metal ions such as Cu and Zn and other toxic metal ions such as Cd. In this project we focused on investigations of proteins from mer operons found in gamma-proteobacteria with specific objectives to use biophysical and biochemical approaches to detect and define (1) interactions between the structural components of the key detoxifying mer operon enzyme, mercuric ion reductase (MerA), (2) interactions between the components of MerA and the other mer operon enzyme, organomercurial lyase (MerB), and (3) to investigate the structure and interactions of integral membrane transport proteins, MerT and MerC, with MerA.

  7. Protective Efficacy of Recombinant Modified Vaccinia Virus Ankara Delivering Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Spike Glycoprotein

    PubMed Central

    Volz, Asisa; Kupke, Alexandra; Song, Fei; Jany, Sylvia; Fux, Robert; Shams-Eldin, Hosam; Schmidt, Jörg; Becker, Christin; Eickmann, Markus; Becker, Stephan

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes severe respiratory disease in humans. We tested a recombinant modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) vaccine expressing full-length MERS-CoV spike (S) glycoprotein by immunizing BALB/c mice with either intramuscular or subcutaneous regimens. In all cases, MVA-MERS-S induced MERS-CoV-specific CD8+ T cells and virus-neutralizing antibodies. Vaccinated mice were protected against MERS-CoV challenge infection after transduction with the human dipeptidyl peptidase 4 receptor. This MERS-CoV infection model demonstrates the safety and efficacy of the candidate vaccine. PMID:26018172

  8. Antiviral Treatment Guidelines for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Chong, Yong Pil; Song, Joon Young; Seo, Yu Bin; Choi, Jae-Phil

    2015-01-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) is an acute infectious disease of the respiratory system caused by the new betacoronavirus (MERS coronavirus, MERS-CoV), which shows high mortality rates. The typical symptoms of MERS are fever, cough, and shortness of breath, and it is often accompanied by pneumonia. The MERS-CoV was introduced to Republic of Korea in May 2015 by a patient returning from Saudi Arabia. The disease spread mostly through hospital infections, and by the time the epidemic ended in August, the total number of confirmed diagnoses was 186, among which 36 patients died. Reflecting the latest evidence for antiviral drugs in the treatment of MERS-CoV infection and the experiences of treating MERS patients in Republic of Korea, these guidelines focus on antiviral drugs to achieve effective treatment of MERS-CoV infections. PMID:26483999

  9. The Functions of Multiple Representations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ainsworth, Shaaron

    1999-01-01

    Discusses multiple representations and multimedia learning environments; describes a functional taxonomy of MERs (multiple external representations); and considers how MERs are used to support cognitive processes in learning and problem solving with computers. (Contains 41 references.) (Author/LRW)

  10. Teaching Medical Informatics Skills During a Clinical Clerkship

    PubMed Central

    Codish, Shlomi; Leibowitz, Akiva; Weinreb, Baruch

    2005-01-01

    Medical students use many forms of medical electronic resources (MER) during clinical clerkships. Such resources may be inaccurate, irrelevant or inappropriate, yet most medical students do not receive guidance on the use of MER. During the earliest clinical clerkship we gave a series of seminars and assignments on the use of MER. These were well accepted and were followed by increased knowledge in the use of MER. PMID:16779216

  11. Molecular mechanisms of plasmid-determined mercury and cadmium resistances in bacteria

    SciTech Connect

    Nucifora, G.

    1989-01-01

    The structural basis for induction of the broad spectrum mercurial resistance operon of pDU1358 with inorganic mercury and with phenylmercury acetate was addressed by DNA sequencing analysis (that showed that a major difference occurred in the 3{prime} 29 base pairs of the ital merR gene compared to the merR genes of Tn501 and R100) and by lac-fusion transcription experiments regulated by merR in trans. The lac-fusion results were compared with those from a narrow spectrum operon, and the pDU1358 merR deleted at the 3{prime} end. A hybrid mer operon containing the merR gene from pDU1358 and lacking the merB gene was inducible by both phenylmercury and inorganic Hg{sup 2+}, showing that organomercurial lyase is not needed for induction by organomercurials. A mutant form of pDU1358 merR missing the C-terminal 17 amino acids responded to inorganic Hg{sup 2+} but not to phenylmercury, indicating that the C-terminal region of the MerR protein of the pDU1358 mer operon is required for the recognition of phenylmercury acetate. The down regulation of the mer operon by the merD gene was also measured in trans with complementing mer operons of pDU1358 or R100 or merD{sup {minus}} mutants. In the presence of the merD gene, beta-galactosidase activity was lowered by 2 to 4 fold. The merD gene gene product was visualized by autoradiography. The Cd{sup 2+} resistance determinant cadA of S. aureus was investigated. The nucleotide sequence of the DNA fragment containing the cadA determinant revealed two open reading frames the larger one of which is essential for expression of cadmium resistance.

  12. Final Report - Molecular Mechanisms of Bacterial Mercury Transformation - UCSF

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Susan M.

    2014-04-24

    The bacterial mercury resistance (mer) operon functions in Hg biogeochemistry and bioremediation by converting reactive inorganic Hg(II) and organic [RHg(II)]1+ mercurials to relatively inert monoatomic mercury vapor, Hg(0). Its genes regulate operon expression (MerR, MerD, MerOP), import Hg(II) (MerT, MerP, and MerC), and demethylate (MerB) and reduce (MerA) mercurials. We focus on how these components interact with each other and with the host cell to allow cells to survive and detoxify Hg compounds. Understanding how this ubiquitous detoxification system fits into the biology and ecology of its bacterial host is essential to guide interventions that support and enhance Hg remediation. In the current overall project we focused on two aspects of this system: (1) investigations of the energetics of Hg(II)-ligand binding interactions, and (2) both experimental and computational approaches to investigating the molecular mechanisms of Hg(II) acquisition by MerA and intramolecular transfer of Hg(II) prior to reduction within the MerA enzyme active site. Computational work was led by Prof. Jeremy Smith and took place at the University of Tennessee, while experimental work on MerA was led by Prof. Susan Miller and took place at the University of California San Francisco.

  13. Identification of Information Types and Sources by the Public for Promoting Awareness of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus in Saudi Arabia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoda, Jradi

    2016-01-01

    Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a viral respiratory disease of serious consequences caused by MERS Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). Saudi communities still lack awareness of available protective measures to prevent the transmission of the virus. It is necessary to explore the current information-seeking strategies and preferences for…

  14. Characterization of methyl methacrylate oligomers using secondary ion mass spectrometry, APCI mass spectrometry and molecular orbital theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takeuchi, T.; Iwai, K.; Momoji, K.; Miyamoto, I.; Saiki, K.; Hashimoto, K.

    2003-01-01

    The ionization efficiency and fragmentation mechanism of methyl methacrylate (MMA) oligomers (3-mer˜8-mer) were investigated by using secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) and APCI mass spectrometry (APCI-MS). Protonation and fragmentation mechanisms of MMA oligomers were clarified by using molecular orbital (MO) methods. MMA oligomers were synthesized in anionic polymerization, and the oligomers were fractionated into 3-mer˜8-mer using gel permeation chromatography (GPC). In SIMS of MMA oligomers (3-mer˜8-mer), [MH] +, [MH-CH 3OH] +, [MH-methyl formate] + and [MH-2CH 3OH-methyl formate] + appeared. The peak intensities of adduct ions [M+Li] +, [M+Na] + and [M+K] + increased with the increase of the polymerization degree. The optimized geometries and H +, Li +, Na + and K + affinities of MMA monomer (1-mer), dimer (2-mer), and trimer (3-mer) were calculated using the PM3 and ab initio MO methods. The calculated H +, Li +, Na + and K + affinities increased in order of 1-mer, 2-mer and 3-mer of MMA.

  15. Structural Biology of The sequestration & Transport of Heavy Metal Toxins: NMR Structure Determination of Proteins Containing the CYS-X-Y-Metal Binding Motif

    SciTech Connect

    Stanley J. Opella

    2004-03-10

    The support from the Department of Energy enabled us to initiate research on several proteins from the bacterial mercury detoxification system; in particular, we were able to determine the structures of MerP and related metal binding sequences. We have also worked on the membrane transport proteins MerF and MerT.

  16. Mercury Reduction and Methyl Mercury Degradation by the Soil Bacterium Xanthobacter autotrophicus Py2

    PubMed Central

    Petrus, Amanda K.; Rutner, Colin; Liu, Songnian; Wang, Yingjiao

    2015-01-01

    Two previously uncharacterized potential broad-spectrum mercury (Hg) resistance operons (mer) are present on the chromosome of the soil Alphaproteobacteria Xanthobacter autotrophicus Py2. These operons, mer1 and mer2, contain two features which are commonly found in mer operons in the genomes of soil and marine Alphaproteobacteria, but are not present in previously characterized mer operons: a gene for the mercuric reductase (MerA) that encodes an alkylmercury lyase domain typical of those found on the MerB protein, and the presence of an additional gene, which we are calling merK, with homology to glutathione reductase. Here, we demonstrate that Py2 is resistant to 0.2 μM inorganic mercury [Hg(II)] and 0.05 μM methylmercury (MeHg). Py2 is capable of converting MeHg and Hg(II) to elemental mercury [Hg(0)], and reduction of Hg(II) is induced by incubation in sub toxic concentrations of Hg(II). Transcription of the merA genes increased with Hg(II) treatment, and in both operons merK resides on the same polycistronic mRNA as merA. We propose the use of Py2 as a model system for studying the contribution of mer to Hg mobility in soil and marine ecosystems. PMID:26341208

  17. Evidence for zoonotic origins of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus.

    PubMed

    Han, Hui-Ju; Yu, Hao; Yu, Xue-Jie

    2016-02-01

    Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) is an emerging infectious disease, caused by Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and is considered to be a zoonosis. However, the natural reservoirs of MERS-CoV remain obscure, with bats and camels as the most suspected sources. In this article, we review the evidence supporting a bat/camel origin of human MERS-CoV infection and current knowledge on the modes of camel-to-human transmission of MERS-CoV. PMID:26572912

  18. Professional tennis players' serve: correlation between segmental angular momentums and ball velocity.

    PubMed

    Martin, Caroline; Kulpa, Richard; Delamarche, Paul; Bideau, Benoit

    2013-03-01

    The purpose of the study was to identify the relationships between segmental angular momentum and ball velocity between the following events: ball toss, maximal elbow flexion (MEF), racket lowest point (RLP), maximal shoulder external rotation (MER), and ball impact (BI). Ten t