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Sample records for environmentally relevant levels

  1. Exposure to environmentally-relevant levels of ozone negatively influence pollen and fruit development.

    PubMed

    Gillespie, Colin; Stabler, Daniel; Tallentire, Eva; Goumenaki, Eleni; Barnes, Jeremy

    2015-11-01

    A combination of in vitro and in vivo studies on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. cv. Triton) revealed that environmentally-relevant levels of ozone (O3) pollution adversely affected pollen germination, germ tube growth and pollen-stigma interactions - pollen originating from plants raised in charcoal-Purafil(®) filtered air (CFA) exhibited reduced germ tube development on the stigma of plants exposed to environmentally-relevant levels of O3. The O3-induced decline in in vivo pollen viability was reflected in increased numbers of non-fertilized and fertilized non-viable ovules in immature fruit. Negative effects of O3 on fertilization occurred regardless of the timing of exposure, with reductions in ovule viability evident in O3 × CFA and CFA × O3 crossed plants. This suggests O3-induced reductions in fertilization were associated with reduced pollen viability and/or ovule development. Fruit born on trusses independently exposed to 100 nmol mol(-1) O3 (10 h d(-1)) from flowering exhibited a decline in seed number and this was reflected in a marked decline in the weight and size of individual fruit - a clear demonstration of the direct consequence of the effects of the pollutant on reproductive processes. Ozone exposure also resulted in shifts in the starch and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) content of fruit that were consistent with accelerated ripening. The findings of this study draw attention to the need for greater consideration of, and possibly the adoption of weightings for the direct impacts of O3, and potentially other gaseous pollutants, on reproductive biology during 'risk assessment' exercises. PMID:26284345

  2. [Public health relevant levels of pollutants in soil. Considerations for preventive, environmental health protection].

    PubMed

    Müller, L

    1998-07-01

    A working document on nation-wide applicable health-related guiding levels of environmental pollutants in soil has been prepared. These levels are intended to be the base for the administrative regulation of soil contaminations in connection with the German "Bundesbodenschutzgesetz" (Federal law on the protection of soil). Legislation demands these base levels to be intensely related to protection against serious health effects (i.e. health hazards). Looking more closely at the toxicological deduction of these values and at some values extracted from that process some uncertainties become obvious with regard to a clearcut limit between dangerous and noxious levels in soil. Indeed there are some arguments which suggest a more conservative approach. Health-care based recommendations should be introduced also at lower contaminant levels in soil. Therefore, development of an internal administrative manual on basic noxious values of soil pollutants (e.g. values below the threshold of danger) is suggested which may be useful for health authorities to cope with special problems in individual cases. PMID:9738353

  3. A metabolomic study of fipronil for the anxiety-like behavior in zebrafish larvae at environmentally relevant levels.

    PubMed

    Wang, Cui; Qian, Yi; Zhang, Xiaofeng; Chen, Fang; Zhang, Quan; Li, Zhuoyu; Zhao, Meirong

    2016-04-01

    Field residue of fipronil can interfere with the physiological characters of the domesticated fish; thus, lethal dose test and the general biomarker cannot delineate the low-level situation. Manipulating by video track, we observed an anxiety-like behavior including high speed and abnormal photoperiod accommodation after exposure to fipronil at environmental typical dose in zebrafish larvae. Examining the unbiased metabolomic profiles, we found perturbation in several metabolic pathways, including the increased contents of fatty acids and glycerol and the decreased levels of the glycine, serine, and branched amino acid. We presumed that observed enhanced fatty acid utility was in response to increase energy demands caused by anxiety like behavior. Additionally, the body burden of neurotransmitter such as glycine and L-glutamate may concurrently stimulate the swimming behavior. The insight of this study showed that integral perturbation such as metabolism helps us to further understand the risk to aquatic fish at the environmentally relevant levels. PMID:26774772

  4. Repository environmental parameters and models/methodologies relevant to assessing the performance of high-level waste packages in basalt, tuff, and salt

    SciTech Connect

    Claiborne, H.C.; Croff, A.G.; Griess, J.C.; Smith, F.J.

    1987-09-01

    This document provides specifications for models/methodologies that could be employed in determining postclosure repository environmental parameters relevant to the performance of high-level waste packages for the Basalt Waste Isolation Project (BWIP) at Richland, Washington, the tuff at Yucca Mountain by the Nevada Test Site, and the bedded salt in Deaf Smith County, Texas. Guidance is provided on the identify of the relevant repository environmental parameters; the models/methodologies employed to determine the parameters, and the input data base for the models/methodologies. Supporting studies included are an analysis of potential waste package failure modes leading to identification of the relevant repository environmental parameters, an evaluation of the credible range of the repository environmental parameters, and a summary of the review of existing models/methodologies currently employed in determining repository environmental parameters relevant to waste package performance. 327 refs., 26 figs., 19 tabs.

  5. Cadmium toxicity investigated at the physiological and biophysical levels under environmentally relevant conditions using the aquatic model plant Ceratophyllum demersum.

    PubMed

    Andresen, Elisa; Kappel, Sophie; Stärk, Hans-Joachim; Riegger, Ulrike; Borovec, Jakub; Mattusch, Jürgen; Heinz, Andrea; Schmelzer, Christian E H; Matoušková, Šárka; Dickinson, Bryan; Küpper, Hendrik

    2016-06-01

    Cadmium (Cd) is an important environmental pollutant and is poisonous to most organisms. We aimed to unravel the mechanisms of Cd toxicity in the model water plant Ceratophyllum demersum exposed to low (nM) concentrations of Cd as are present in nature. Experiments were conducted under environmentally relevant conditions, including nature-like light and temperature cycles, and a low biomass to water ratio. We measured chlorophyll (Chl) fluorescence kinetics, oxygen exchange, the concentrations of reactive oxygen species and pigments, metal binding to proteins, and the accumulation of starch and metals. The inhibition threshold concentration for most parameters was 20 nM. Below this concentration, hardly any stress symptoms were observed. The first site of inhibition was photosynthetic light reactions (the maximal quantum yield of photosystem II (PSII) reaction centre measured as Fv /Fm , light-acclimated PSII activity ΦPSII , and total Chl). Trimers of the PSII light-harvesting complexes (LHCIIs) decreased more than LHC monomers and detection of Cd in the monomers suggested replacement of magnesium (Mg) by Cd in the Chl molecules. As a consequence of dysfunctional photosynthesis and energy dissipation, reactive oxygen species (superoxide and hydrogen peroxide) appeared. Cadmium had negative effects on macrophytes at much lower concentrations than reported previously, emphasizing the importance of studies applying environmentally relevant conditions. A chain of inhibition events could be established. PMID:26840406

  6. AN APPROACH TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF MODELS TO QUANTITATIVELY ASSESS THE EFFECTS OF EXPOSURE TO ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT LEVELS OF ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS

    EPA Science Inventory

    An approach to the development of quantitative models to assess the effects of exposure to environmentally relevant levels of endocrine disruptors on homeostasis in adults.

    Ben-Jonathan N, Cooper RL, Foster P, Hughes CL, Hoyer PB, Klotz D, Kohn M, Lamb DJ, Stancel GM.
    <...

  7. Perinatal Exposure to Environmentally Relevant Levels of Bisphenol A Decreases Fertility and Fecundity in CD-1 Mice

    PubMed Central

    Cabaton, Nicolas J.; Wadia, Perinaaz R.; Rubin, Beverly S.; Zalko, Daniel; Schaeberle, Cheryl M.; Askenase, Michael H.; Gadbois, Jennifer L.; Tharp, Andrew P.; Whitt, Gregory S.; Sonnenschein, Carlos; Soto, Ana M.

    2011-01-01

    Background Perinatal exposure to low-doses of bisphenol A (BPA) results in alterations in the ovary, uterus, and mammary glands and in a sexually dimorphic region of the brain known to be important for estrous cyclicity. Objectives We aimed to determine whether perinatal exposure to environmentally relevant doses of BPA alters reproductive capacity. Methods Female CD-1 mice that were exposed to BPA at 0, 25 ng, 250 ng, or 25 μg/kg body weight (BW)/day or diethylstilbestrol (DES) at 10 ng/kg BW/day (positive control) from gestational day 8 through day 16 of lactation were continuously housed with proven breeder males for 32 weeks starting at 2 months of age. At each delivery, pups born to these mating pairs were removed. The cumulative number of pups, number of deliveries, and litter size were recorded. The purity of the BPA used in this and our previous studies was assessed using HPLC, mass spectrometry, and nuclear magnetic resonance. Results The forced breeding experiment revealed a decrease in the cumulative number of pups, observed as a nonmonotonic dose–response effect, and a decline in fertility and fecundity over time in female mice exposed perinatally to BPA. The BPA was 97% pure, with no evidence of contamination by other phenolic compounds. Conclusions Perinatal exposure to BPA leads to a dose-dependent decline in the reproductive capacity of female mice. The effects on the cumulative number of pups are comparable to those previously reported in mice developmentally exposed to DES, a compound well known to impair reproduction in women. This association suggests the possibility that early BPA exposure may also affect reproductive capacity in women. PMID:21126938

  8. COMPARING ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT PCBS TO TCDD

    EPA Science Inventory

    COMPARING ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT PCBS TO TCDD. D E Burgin1, J J Diliberto2 and L S Birnbaum3.1UNC, Chapel Hill, NC, USA; 2USEPA/ORD/NHEERL, ETD, RTP, NC, USA

    Environmental exposures to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) always occur as part of a complex mixture. ...

  9. Is chemosensitisation by environmental pollutants ecotoxicologically relevant?

    PubMed

    Kurth, Denise; Brack, Werner; Luckenbach, Till

    2015-10-01

    The active cellular efflux of toxicants is an efficient biological defense mode present in all organisms. By blocking this so-called multixenobiotic resistance transport-a process also referred to as chemosensitisation-, cellular bioaccumulation and the sensitivity of organisms towards environmental pollutants can increase. So far, a wide range of compounds, including pesticides, pharmaceuticals, fragrances, and surfactants, have been identified as chemosensitisers. Although, significant on a cellular level, the environmental impact of chemosensitisation on the organism level is not yet understood. Critically evaluating existing data, this paper identifies research needs to support our tentative conclusion that chemosensitisation may well enhance the risks of chemical exposure to aquatic organisms. Our conclusion is based on studies investigating the impact of individual chemicals and complex environmental mixtures on aquatic wildlife and a chemosensitiser mixture toxicity model which, however, is subject to great uncertainty due to substantial knowledge gaps. Those uncertainties include the inconsistent reporting of effect data, the lack of representative environmental contaminants tested for chemosensitisation, and the publishing of highly unreliable nominal exposure concentrations. In order to confirm the tentative conclusion of this paper, we require the significant and systematic investigation of a broader set of chemicals and environmental samples with a harmonised set of bioassays and rigorously controlled freely dissolved effect concentrations. PMID:26281775

  10. Effects of Environmentally Relevant Levels of Perfluorooctane Sulfonate on Clinical Parameters and Immunological Functions in B6C3F1 Mice

    PubMed Central

    Fair, Patricia A.; Driscoll, Erin; Mollenhauer, Meagan A. M.; Bradshaw, Sarah G.; Yun, Se Hun; Kannan, Kurunthachalam; Bossart, Gregory D.; Keil, Deborah E.; Peden-Adams, Margie M.

    2012-01-01

    In the first part of a series of studies to account for perfluoroocatane sulfonate (PFOS)-induced sheep red blood cell (SRBC)-specific IgM antibody suppression in mice, a survey of clinical and immunotoxicological endpoints were examined. Adult female B6C3F1 mice were exposed orally for 28 days to a total administered dose of 0, 0.1, 0.5, 1, or 5 mg PFOS/kg. Uterus wet weight was significantly decreased compared to control at the 5 mg/kg dose. No indication of wasting syndrome, malnutrition, alteration of thyroid homeostasis, or signs of overt toxicity were observed. Numbers of splenic CD19+/CD21−, CD19+/CD21+, B220+/CD40+, CD4+/CD154−, CD4+/CD154+, and MHC-II+ cells were not altered. Additionally, ex vivo IL-4, IL-5, and IL-6 production by in vitro anti-CD3- or phorbol myristate acetate-stimulated CD4+ T-cells were not affected. Ex vivo IL-6 production by B-cells was significantly increased by in vitro stimulation with either anti-CD40 or lipopolysaccharide. Increased IL-6 production by B-cells was the most sensitive endpoint assessed resulting in alterations at the lowest dose tested (0.1 mg/kg TAD) following anti-CD40 stimulation. Further studies are required to characterize effects on inflammatory markers such as IL-6 at environmentally relevant concentrations of PFOS and to determine the key events associated with PFOS-induced IgM suppression to address potential human health risks. PMID:21261439

  11. Developing an Environmental Currency Relevant to People

    EPA Science Inventory

    EPA (and others worldwide) wanted to more fully include environmental attributes in decision making but there was no systematic approach that defined and organized the environment to identify and potentially quantify those environmental attributes that humans required, valued, or...

  12. Relevance of enantiomeric separations in environmental science.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, D W; Reid, G L; Hilton, M L; Chang, C D

    1993-01-01

    A significant number of all organic chemicals that are released into the environment are racemic mixtures. Most environmental regulations and scientific environmental studies treat racemic mixtures as though they were single, pure compounds. This can lead to incorrect toxicological, distribution, degradation and other data. A series of new enantioselective chromatographic techniques have been developed that allow the facile separation and quantitation of chiral compounds of environmental importance. Nineteen racemic compounds that have been or currently are being released to the environment are resolved. These include: rodenticides--Warfarin, Coumachlor and Coumafuryl; insecticides--Crufomate, Bulan, Fonofos, Mitotane; insect repellent--Ethohexadiol; herbicides and fungicides--Ancymidol, Silvex, Napropamide, phenyl mercuric lactate, 2-[3-chlorophenoxy]propionamide, and 2-chloropropionic acid; and halocarbons-1,2-dichloropropane, 2-bromo-1-chloropropane, 1,2-dibromo-3-chloropropane, 2,3-dichlorobutane and alpha-1,2,3,4,5,6-hexachlorocyclohexane. Several examples are given to illustrate the importance of enantioselective measurements of these and other compounds. Choosing the proper chromatographic technique and chiral stationary phase based on analyte structure is also discussed. PMID:15091913

  13. Environmentally relevant concentrations of microplastic particles influence larval fish ecology.

    PubMed

    Lönnstedt, Oona M; Eklöv, Peter

    2016-06-01

    The widespread occurrence and accumulation of plastic waste in the environment have become a growing global concern over the past decade. Although some marine organisms have been shown to ingest plastic, few studies have investigated the ecological effects of plastic waste on animals. Here we show that exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations of microplastic polystyrene particles (90 micrometers) inhibits hatching, decreases growth rates, and alters feeding preferences and innate behaviors of European perch (Perca fluviatilis) larvae. Furthermore, individuals exposed to microplastics do not respond to olfactory threat cues, which greatly increases predator-induced mortality rates. Our results demonstrate that microplastic particles operate both chemically and physically on larval fish performance and development. PMID:27257256

  14. The effects of space relevant environmental factors on halophilic Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leuko, Stefan; Moeller, Ralf; Rettberg, Petra

    Within the last 50 years, space technology has provided tools for transporting terrestrial (microbial) life beyond Earth's protective shield in order to study its responses to selected conditions of space. Microorganisms are ubiquitous and can be found in almost every environment on Earth. They thrive and survive in a broad spectrum of environments and are true masters in adapting to rapidly changing external conditions. Although microorganisms cannot actively grow under the harsh conditions of outer space or other known planets, some microorganisms might be able to survive for a time in space or other planets as dormant, inactive spores or in similar desiccation-resistant resting states, e.g., enclosed in halite crystals or biofilms. Halite crystals are the realm of halophilic Archaea as they have adapted to life at extreme salt concentrations. They can stay entrapped in such crystals for millions of years without losing viability and therefore the family Halobacteriaceae belongs to the group of microorganisms which may survive space travel or may even be found on other planets. Several members of this family have been utilized in space relevant experiments where they were exposed to detrimental environmental conditions such as UV-C radiation, vacuum, temperature cycles (+60(°) C and -25(°) C) and heavy iron bombardment (150 MeV He, 500 MeV Ar and 500 MeV Fe ions). The viability was evaluated by colony forming unit (cfu) counts as well as with the LIFE/DEAD kit. Results revealed that UV-C radiation (up to 1.000 J/m (2) ) has a considerable effect on the viability, whereas the other tested parameters inflict little damage onto the organisms. Repair of UV-C inflicted damage is efficient and several DNA damage repair genes are up-regulated following exposure. Halophilic archaea display a strong resistance against heavy iron bombardment, with dosages of up to 2.000 Gy 500 MeV Fe ions needed to establish a visible effect on the vitality. Genomic integrity after

  15. Environmental Conservation for Development and the Relevant Role of Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Budowski, Gerardo

    Environmental education must be shaped to generate universal involvement in environmental aspects of life, in all political systems. It is absurd for political systems to attempt to adapt ecological factors to fit the underlying political assumptions; political philosophy must become consistent with ecological truths. In the developing nations it…

  16. Internationalisation and Standardisation of European Environmental Assessment. Relevance to India

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gazzola, Paola; Jha-Thakur, Urmila

    2009-01-01

    This paper discusses the rationale underlying "PENTA", an EU funded Erasmus Mundus project. In doing so, it explores the challenges of internationalising and standardising European environmental assessment (EA) practice and education to a third country audience, looking at India as a case study. It is argued that the EU EA Directives are…

  17. Environmental Perception as a Diagnostic Probe of Environmental Complexity Levels

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freitas, Mirlaine R.; Macedo, Renato L. G.; Freitas, Matheus P.; Nunes, Cleiton A.; Venturin, Nelson

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Educational methods to diagnose and improve the level of environmental conception are required. The present work reports a methodology based on studies about the environmental perception of a university public, divided into general students and those related to the forest sciences, who are involved with disciplines and researches related…

  18. Synthesis and Structure of Environmentally Relevant Perfluorinated Sulfonamides

    PubMed Central

    Lehmler, Hans-Joachim; Rama Rao, V.V.V.N.S.; Nauduri, Dhananjaya; Vargo, John D.; Parkin, Sean

    2008-01-01

    Alkylated perfluorooctanesulfonamides are compounds of environmental concern. To make these compounds available for environmental and toxicological studies, a series of N-alkylated perfluorooctanesulfonamides and structurally related compounds were synthesized by reaction of the corresponding perfluoroalkanesulfonyl fluoride with a suitable primary or secondary amine. Perfluoroalkanesulfonamidoethanols were obtained from the N-alkyl perfluoroalkanesulfonamides either by direct alkylation with bromoethanol or alkylation with acetic acid 2-bromo-ethyl ester followed by hydrolysis of the acetate. N-Alkyl perfluorooctanesulfonamidoacetates were synthesized in an analogous way by alkylation of N-alkyl perfluoroalkanesulfonamides with a bromo acetic acid ester, followed by basic ester hydrolysis. Alternatively, N-alkyl perfluoroalkanesulfonamides can be alkylated with an appropriate alcohol using the Mitsunobu reaction. Perfluorooctanesulfonamide was synthesized from the perfluorooctanesulfonyl fluoride via the azide by reduction with Zn/HCl. All perfluorooctanesulfonamides contained linear as well as branched C8F17 isomers, typically in a 20:1 to 30:1 ratio. The crystal structures of N-ethyl and N,N-diethyl perfluorooctanesulfonamide show that the S-N bond has considerable double bond character. This double bond character results in a significant rotational barrier around the S-N bond (ΔG≠ = 62–71 kJ mol−1) and a preferred solid state and solution conformation in which the N-alkyl groups are oriented opposite to the perfluorooctyl group to minimize steric crowding around the S-N bond. PMID:18516235

  19. Ecological relevance of Sentinels' biomarker responses: a multi-level approach.

    PubMed

    Seabra Pereira, Camilo D; Abessa, Denis M S; Choueri, Rodrigo B; Almagro-Pastor, Victor; Cesar, Augusto; Maranho, Luciane A; Martín-Díaz, María Laura; Torres, Ronaldo J; Gusso-Choueri, Paloma K; Almeida, João E; Cortez, Fernando S; Mozeto, Antonio A; Silbiger, Helcy L N; Sousa, Eduinetty C P M; Del Valls, Tommas Angel; Bainy, Afonso C D

    2014-05-01

    In response to the need for more sensitive and rapid indicators of environmental quality, sublethal effects on the lowest levels of biological organization have been investigated. The ecological relevance of these responses assumes a prevailing role to assure effectiveness as indicator of ecological status. This study aimed to investigate the linkages between biomarker responses of caged bivalves and descriptive parameters of macrobenthic community structure. For this purpose a multi-level environmental assessment of marine and estuarine zones was performed in São Paulo coast, Brazil. Multivariate analysis was applied to identify linkages between biological responses and ecological indices, as well as to characterizing the studied stations. Individuals of the marine mussel Perna perna caged along Santos Bay showed signs of oxidative stress, lysosomal membrane destabilization, histological alterations and reduced embryonic development. The estuarine oyster Crassostrea rhizophorae caged along Santos Port Channel showed alterations on biotransformation enzymes and antioxidant system, DNA damage and lysosomal membrane destabilization. The benthic community analysis showed reduced richness and diversity in the same areas of the Santos bay and estuary where biomarker responses were altered. Our results revealed that xenobiotics are inducing physiological stress, which may lead to changes of the benthic community structure and deterioration of the ecological status over time. Integrating biomarker responses and ecological indexes improved certainty that alterations found at community level could be related to xenobiotic as stressors, which was very useful to improve the discriminatory power of the environmental assessment. PMID:24314371

  20. Averaging underwater noise levels for environmental assessment of shipping.

    PubMed

    Merchant, Nathan D; Blondel, Philippe; Dakin, D Tom; Dorocicz, John

    2012-10-01

    Rising underwater noise levels from shipping have raised concerns regarding chronic impacts to marine fauna. However, there is a lack of consensus over how to average local shipping noise levels for environmental impact assessment. This paper addresses this issue using 110 days of continuous data recorded in the Strait of Georgia, Canada. Probability densities of ~10(7) 1-s samples in selected 1/3 octave bands were approximately stationary across one-month subsamples. Median and mode levels varied with averaging time. Mean sound pressure levels averaged in linear space, though susceptible to strong bias from outliers, are most relevant to cumulative impact assessment metrics. PMID:23039575

  1. Considerations of Environmentally Relevant Test Conditions for Improved Evaluation of Ecological Hazards of Engineered Nanomaterials

    EPA Science Inventory

    Engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) are increasingly entering the environment with uncertain consequences including potential ecological effects. Various research communities view differently whether ecotoxicological testing of ENMs should be conducted using environmentally relevant ...

  2. Transport of Fluorescently Labeled Hydroxyapatite Nanoparticles in Saturated Granular Media at Environmentally Relevant Concentrations of Surfactants

    EPA Science Inventory

    Little is known about the mobility of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) in granular media at environmentally relevant concentration of surfactant, which represents a critical knowledge gap in employing ENPs for in-situ remediation of contaminated groundwater. In this study, transpo...

  3. The progestin levonorgestrel affects sex differentiation in zebrafish at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Hua, Jianghuan; Han, Jian; Guo, Yongyong; Zhou, Bingsheng

    2015-09-01

    Synthetic progestins have become widespread environmental contaminants and may cause adverse effects on fish. In the present study, we investigated the effects of levonorgestrel (LNG) on sex differentiation in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Embryos were exposed to LNG at environmentally relevant concentrations (0, 1, 10, 33, and 100ng/L) and allowed to develop until sexual maturity. Histological examination at 63 days post fertilization (dpf) caused complete sex reversal and 100% males were observed in the 10, 33 and 100ng/L treatments; gross morphological and histological examination of gonads at 142dpf further confirmed 100% males at these exposure concentrations. The results indicate androgenic activity of LNG, and masculinization during zebrafish gonadal differentiation. The mRNA expression levels of genes involved in fish sex differentiation and gonadal development were examined at 28 and 42dpf. Down-regulation of the mRNA expression of aromatase (e.g., cyp19a1a, cyp19a1b), the forkhead transcription factor gene L2 (foxl2) and the Fushi tarazu factor-1d (nr5a1b) were observed. In contrast, transcription of the doublesex and mab-3-related transcription factor 1 (dmrt1) gene was up-regulated. Androgen receptor (ar) mRNA expression was significantly down-regulated at 28 and 42dpf. Co-exposure to flutamide (an androgen antagonist) and LNG, led to a decrease in the sex inversion potency of LNG. Our study has demonstrated that environmentally relevant concentrations of LNG could alter sex differentiation and gonadal development in zebrafish. Our results also suggest a potentially high ecological risk of LNG to fish populations in LNG-contaminated aquatic environments. PMID:26163149

  4. Atrazine does not affect algal biomass or snail populations in microcosm communities at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Baxter, Leilan R; Moore, Dana L; Sibley, Paul K; Solomon, Keith R; Hanson, Mark L

    2011-07-01

    The herbicide atrazine is a photosynthetic inhibitor used around the world in agricultural applications. Contamination of surface waters adjacent to treated areas can directly reduce growth of nontarget aquatic autotrophs, but the severity of impacts is highly dependent on species sensitivity and exposure concentration. Secondary effects resulting from macrophyte or phytoplankton decline may include an expansion of the more tolerant periphyton community. Recently, this shift in the autotrophic community has been proposed as a mechanism for increased rates of parasite infections in amphibians via augmented populations of aquatic snails which act as intermediate hosts to larval trematodes. To further clarify this relationship, an outdoor microcosm study was conducted to examine the effects of atrazine on primary production and snail populations over a range of environmentally relevant concentrations. In July 2009, 15 experimental ponds were treated to achieve initial concentrations of 0, 1, 10, 30, and 100 µg/L atrazine. Over a period of 73 d, measures were taken of macrophyte, phytoplankton, and periphyton biomass, growth, and fecundity of caged snails (Physella spp. and Stagnicola elodes) and free-living snails (Physella spp.). Except for declines in macrophyte biomass at the highest treatment level, no consistent relationships were found between atrazine concentration and any measured parameter. Comparison of these results with previous findings highlights the variability of responses to atrazine exposure between similarly constructed freshwater communities, even at concentrations up to 20 times higher than sustained environmental levels. PMID:21567448

  5. Physiological relevance of plant 2-Cys peroxiredoxin overoxidation level and oligomerization status.

    PubMed

    Cerveau, Delphine; Ouahrani, Djelloul; Marok, Mohamed Amine; Blanchard, Laurence; Rey, Pascal

    2016-01-01

    Peroxiredoxins are ubiquitous thioredoxin-dependent peroxidases presumed to display, upon environmental constraints, a chaperone function resulting from a redox-dependent conformational switch. In this work, using biochemical and genetic approaches, we aimed to unravel the factors regulating the redox status and the conformation of the plastidial 2-Cys peroxiredoxin (2-Cys PRX) in plants. In Arabidopsis, we show that in optimal growth conditions, the overoxidation level mainly depends on the availability of thioredoxin-related electron donors, but not on sulfiredoxin, the enzyme reducing the 2-Cys PRX overoxidized form. We also observed that upon various physiological temperature, osmotic and light stress conditions, the overoxidation level and oligomerization status of 2-Cys PRX can moderately vary depending on the constraint type. Further, no major change was noticed regarding protein conformation in water-stressed Arabidopsis, barley and potato plants, whereas species-dependent up- and down-variations in overoxidation were observed. In contrast, both 2-Cys PRX overoxidation and oligomerization were strongly induced during a severe oxidative stress generated by methyl viologen. From these data, revealing that the oligomerization status of plant 2-Cys PRX does not exhibit important variation and is not tightly linked to the protein redox status upon physiologically relevant environmental constraints, the possible in planta functions of 2-Cys PRX are discussed. PMID:26138759

  6. COMPILATION OF LEVEL 1 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    The report gives currently available chemical data from 19 Level 1 environmental assessment studies, compiled in standard format. The data are organized within each study by the analytical technique used to generate them. Inorganic data generated by spark source mass spectroscopy...

  7. Behavioural and physiological responses of birds to environmentally relevant concentrations of an antidepressant.

    PubMed

    Bean, Tom G; Boxall, Alistair B A; Lane, Julie; Herborn, Katherine A; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Arnold, Kathryn E

    2014-11-19

    Many wildlife species forage on sewage-contaminated food, for example, at wastewater treatment plants and on fields fertilized with sewage sludge. The resultant exposure to human pharmaceuticals remains poorly studied for terrestrial species. On the basis of predicted exposure levels in the wild, we administered the common antidepressant fluoxetine (FLUOX) or control treatment via prey to wild-caught starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) for 22 weeks over winter. To investigate responses to fluoxetine, birds were moved from their group aviaries into individual cages for 2 days. Boldness, exploration and activity levels showed no treatment effects but controls and FLUOX birds habituated differently to isolation in terms of the concentration of corticosterone (CORT) metabolites in faeces. The controls that excreted higher concentrations of CORT metabolites on day 1 lost more body mass by day 2 of isolation than those which excreted lower levels of CORT metabolites. CORT metabolites and mass loss were unrelated in FLUOX birds. When we investigated the movements of birds in their group aviaries, we found the controls made a higher frequency of visits to food trays than FLUOX birds around the important foraging periods of sunrise and sunset, as is optimal for wintering birds. Although individual variability makes interpreting the sub-lethal endpoints measured challenging, our data suggest that fluoxetine at environmentally relevant concentrations can significantly alter behaviour and physiology. PMID:25405964

  8. Behavioural and physiological responses of birds to environmentally relevant concentrations of an antidepressant

    PubMed Central

    Bean, Tom G.; Boxall, Alistair B. A.; Lane, Julie; Herborn, Katherine A.; Pietravalle, Stéphane; Arnold, Kathryn E.

    2014-01-01

    Many wildlife species forage on sewage-contaminated food, for example, at wastewater treatment plants and on fields fertilized with sewage sludge. The resultant exposure to human pharmaceuticals remains poorly studied for terrestrial species. On the basis of predicted exposure levels in the wild, we administered the common antidepressant fluoxetine (FLUOX) or control treatment via prey to wild-caught starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) for 22 weeks over winter. To investigate responses to fluoxetine, birds were moved from their group aviaries into individual cages for 2 days. Boldness, exploration and activity levels showed no treatment effects but controls and FLUOX birds habituated differently to isolation in terms of the concentration of corticosterone (CORT) metabolites in faeces. The controls that excreted higher concentrations of CORT metabolites on day 1 lost more body mass by day 2 of isolation than those which excreted lower levels of CORT metabolites. CORT metabolites and mass loss were unrelated in FLUOX birds. When we investigated the movements of birds in their group aviaries, we found the controls made a higher frequency of visits to food trays than FLUOX birds around the important foraging periods of sunrise and sunset, as is optimal for wintering birds. Although individual variability makes interpreting the sub-lethal endpoints measured challenging, our data suggest that fluoxetine at environmentally relevant concentrations can significantly alter behaviour and physiology. PMID:25405964

  9. Considerations of Environmentally Relevant Test Conditions for Improved Evaluation of Ecological Hazards of Engineered Nanomaterials.

    PubMed

    Holden, Patricia A; Gardea-Torresdey, Jorge L; Klaessig, Fred; Turco, Ronald F; Mortimer, Monika; Hund-Rinke, Kerstin; Cohen Hubal, Elaine A; Avery, David; Barceló, Damià; Behra, Renata; Cohen, Yoram; Deydier-Stephan, Laurence; Ferguson, P Lee; Fernandes, Teresa F; Herr Harthorn, Barbara; Henderson, W Matthew; Hoke, Robert A; Hristozov, Danail; Johnston, John M; Kane, Agnes B; Kapustka, Larry; Keller, Arturo A; Lenihan, Hunter S; Lovell, Wess; Murphy, Catherine J; Nisbet, Roger M; Petersen, Elijah J; Salinas, Edward R; Scheringer, Martin; Sharma, Monita; Speed, David E; Sultan, Yasir; Westerhoff, Paul; White, Jason C; Wiesner, Mark R; Wong, Eva M; Xing, Baoshan; Steele Horan, Meghan; Godwin, Hilary A; Nel, André E

    2016-06-21

    Engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) are increasingly entering the environment with uncertain consequences including potential ecological effects. Various research communities view differently whether ecotoxicological testing of ENMs should be conducted using environmentally relevant concentrations-where observing outcomes is difficult-versus higher ENM doses, where responses are observable. What exposure conditions are typically used in assessing ENM hazards to populations? What conditions are used to test ecosystem-scale hazards? What is known regarding actual ENMs in the environment, via measurements or modeling simulations? How should exposure conditions, ENM transformation, dose, and body burden be used in interpreting biological and computational findings for assessing risks? These questions were addressed in the context of this critical review. As a result, three main recommendations emerged. First, researchers should improve ecotoxicology of ENMs by choosing test end points, duration, and study conditions-including ENM test concentrations-that align with realistic exposure scenarios. Second, testing should proceed via tiers with iterative feedback that informs experiments at other levels of biological organization. Finally, environmental realism in ENM hazard assessments should involve greater coordination among ENM quantitative analysts, exposure modelers, and ecotoxicologists, across government, industry, and academia. PMID:27177237

  10. LINK BETWEEN LOW-DOSE ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT CADMIUM EXPOSURES AND ASTHENOZOOSPERMIA IN A RAT MODEL

    PubMed Central

    Benoff, Susan; Auborn, Karen; Marmar, Joel L.; Hurley, Ian R.

    2008-01-01

    Objective To define the mechanism(s) underlying an association between asthenozoospermia and elevated blood, seminal plasma and testicular cadmium levels in infertile human males using a rat model of environmentally relevant cadmium exposures. Setting University medical center andrology research laboratory. Animals Male Wistar rats (n = 60), documented to be sensitive to the testicular effects of cadmium. Interventions Rats were given ad libitum access to water supplemented with 14% sucrose and 0, 5, 50 or 100 mg/L cadmium for 1, 4 or 8 weeks being at puberty. Main outcome measure(s) Testicular cadmium levels were determined by atomic absorption, cauda epididymal sperm motility by visual inspection, and testicular gene expression by DNA microarray hybridization. Results Chronic, low dose cadmium exposures produced a time- and dose-dependent reduction in sperm motility. Transcription of genes regulated by calcium and expression of L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel mRNA splicing variants were altered by cadmium exposure. Expression of calcium binding proteins involved in modulation of sperm motility was unaffected. Conclusions A causal relationship between elevated testicular cadmium and asthenozoospermia was identified. Aberrrant sperm motility was correlated with altered expression of L-type voltage-dependent calcium channel isoforms found on the sperm tail, which regulate calcium and cadmium influx. PMID:18308070

  11. Multilevel ecotoxicity assessment of environmentally relevant bisphenol A concentrations using the soil invertebrate Eisenia fetida.

    PubMed

    Babić, Sanja; Barišić, Josip; Bielen, Ana; Bošnjak, Ivana; Sauerborn Klobučar, Roberta; Ujević, Ivana; Strunjak-Perović, Ivančica; Topić Popović, Natalija; Čož-Rakovac, Rozelindra

    2016-11-15

    Bisphenol A (BPA) presents a serious threat to soil ecosystems, yet its effects on soil-inhabiting organisms are mostly unexplored. Therefore, the impact of environmentally relevant BPA concentrations on a terrestrial model organism, the earthworm Eisenia fetida, was assessed. Animals were cutaneously exposed to 100nM and 10μM BPA up to 10days (10-d). Next, a battery of biomarkers was used for ecotoxicological evaluation on a cellular, tissue and behavioural level. HPLC analysis showed that after a 10-d exposure, BPA accumulation reached a maximum of 2.50μg BPA per g of wet tissue weight. On the cellular level, up to 3-d BPA exposure caused increased lipid oxidation indicating oxidative stress. Histopathological assessment of cell wall and ovaries after 7- and 10-d BPA exposure showed multiple abnormalities, i.e. hyperplasia of epidermis, increased body wall thickness and ovarian atrophy. Detection of these changes was facilitated by a newly proposed semi-quantitative scoring system. Finally, behavioural changes were detected after only 3days of exposure to 100nM BPA. Altogether, the presented multilevel toxicity evaluation indicates high sensitivity of earthworms to low BPA doses. PMID:27450340

  12. Cardiorespiratory toxicity of environmentally relevant zinc oxide nanoparticles in the freshwater fish Catostomus commersonii.

    PubMed

    Bessemer, Robin Anne; Butler, Kathryn Marie Alison; Tunnah, Louise; Callaghan, Neal Ingraham; Rundle, Amanda; Currie, Suzanne; Dieni, Christopher Anthony; MacCormack, Tyson James

    2015-01-01

    The inhalation of zinc oxide engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) has been linked to cardiorespiratory dysfunction in mammalian models but the effects of aquatic ENM exposure on fish have not been fully investigated. Nano-zinc oxide (nZnO) is widely used in consumer products such as sunscreens and can make its way into aquatic ecosystems from domestic and commercial wastewater. This study examined the impact of an environmentally relevant nZnO formulation on cardiorespiratory function and energy metabolism in the white sucker (Catostomus commersonii), a freshwater teleost fish. Evidence of oxidative and cellular stress was present in gill tissue, including increases in malondialdehyde levels, heat shock protein (HSP) expression, and caspase 3/7 activity. Gill Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase activity was also higher by approximately three-fold in nZnO-treated fish, likely in response to increased epithelial permeability or structural remodeling. Despite evidence of toxicity in gill, plasma cortisol and lactate levels did not change in animals exposed to 1.0 mg L(-1) nZnO. White suckers also exhibited a 35% decrease in heart rate during nZnO exposure, with no significant changes in resting oxygen consumption or tissue energy stores. Our results suggest that tissue damage or cellular stress resulting from nZnO exposure activates gill neuroepithelial cells, triggering a whole-animal hypoxic response. An increase in parasympathetic nervous signaling will decrease heart rate and may reduce energy demand, even in the face of an environmental toxicant. We have shown that acute exposure to nZnO is toxic to white suckers and that ENMs have the potential to negatively impact cardiorespiratory function in adult fish. PMID:25427894

  13. More than a Museum: Natural History is Relevant in 21st Century Environmental Science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez, R. R.; Murphy-Mariscal, M. L.; Barrows, C. W.

    2015-12-01

    In the Anthropocene, the relevancy of natural history in environmental science is challenged and marginalized today more than ever. We tested the hypothesis that natural history is relevant to the fields of environmental science and ecology by assessing the values, needs, and decisions related to natural history of graduate students and environmental science professionals across 31 universities and various employers, respectively, in California. Graduate students surveyed (93.3%) agreed that natural history was relevant to science, approximately 70% believed it "essential" for conducting field-based research; however, 54.2% felt inadequately trained to teach a natural history course and would benefit from additional training in natural history (> 80%). Of the 185 professionals surveyed, all felt that natural history was relevant to science and "essential" or "desirable" in their vocation (93%). Our results indicate a disconnect between the value and relevancy of natural history in 21st century ecological science and opportunities for gaining those skills and knowledge through education and training.

  14. Metformin Exposure at Environmentally Relevant Concentrations Causes Potential Endocrine Disruption in Adult Male Fish

    PubMed Central

    Niemuth, Nicholas J; Jordan, Renee; Crago, Jordan; Blanksma, Chad; Johnson, Rodney; Klaper, Rebecca D

    2015-01-01

    Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) are emerging contaminants that have been found ubiquitously in wastewater and surface waters around the world. A major source of these compounds is incomplete metabolism in humans and subsequent excretion in human waste, resulting in discharge into surface waters by wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) effluent. One pharmaceutical found in particularly high abundance in recent WWTP effluent and surface water studies is metformin, one of the world's most widely prescribed antidiabetic drugs. Interactions between insulin signaling and steroidogenesis suggest potential endocrine-disrupting effects of metformin found in the aquatic environment. Adult fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) were chronically exposed to metformin for 4 wk, at 40 µg/L, a level similar to the average found in WWTP effluent in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. Genetic endpoints related to metabolism and endocrine function as well as reproduction-related endpoints were examined. Metformin treatment induced significant up-regulation of messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) encoding the egg-protein vitellogenin in male fish, an indication of endocrine disruption. The present study, the first to study the effects of environmentally relevant metformin exposure in fathead minnows, demonstrates the need for further study of the endocrine-disrupting effects of metformin in aquatic organisms. Environ Toxicol Chem 2014;9999:1–6. © 2014 The Authors. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of SETAC. PMID:25358780

  15. Cyanobacterium producing cylindrospermopsin cause histopathological changes at environmentally relevant concentrations in subchronically exposed tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus).

    PubMed

    Guzmán-Guillén, Remedios; Prieto, Ana I; Moreno, Isabel; Vasconcelos, Vitor M; Moyano, Rosario; Blanco, Alfonso; Cameán Fernandez, Ana M

    2015-03-01

    The acute toxicity of cylindrospermopsin (CYN) has been established in rodents, based on diverse intraperitoneal an oral exposure studies and more recently in fish. But no data have been reported in fish after subchronic exposure to cyanobacterial cells containing this cyanotoxin, so far. In this work, tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) were exposed by immersion to lyophilized Aphanizomenon ovalisporum cells added to the aquaria using two concentration levels of CYN (10 or 100 μg CYN L(-1)) and deoxy-cylindrospermopsin (deoxy-CYN) (0.46 or 4.6 μg deoxy-CYN L(-1)), during two different exposure times: 7 or 14 d. This is the first study showing damage in the liver, kidney, hearth, intestines, and gills of tilapia after subchronic exposure to cyanobacterial cells at environmental relevant concentrations. The major histological changes observed were degenerative processes and steatosis in the liver, membranous glomerulopathy in the kidney, myofibrolysis and edema in the heart, necrotic enteritis in the gastrointestinal tract, and hyperemic processes in gill lamellae and microhemorrhages. Moreover, these histopathological findings confirm that the extent of damage is related to the CYN concentration and length of exposure. Results from the morphometric study indicated that the average of nuclear diameter of hepatocytes and cross-sections of proximal and distal convoluted tubules are useful to evaluate the damage induced by CYN in the main targets of toxicity. PMID:24000190

  16. Metformin exposure at environmentally relevant concentrations causes potential endocrine disruption in adult male fish.

    PubMed

    Niemuth, Nicholas J; Jordan, Renee; Crago, Jordan; Blanksma, Chad; Johnson, Rodney; Klaper, Rebecca D

    2015-02-01

    Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) are emerging contaminants that have been found ubiquitously in wastewater and surface waters around the world. A major source of these compounds is incomplete metabolism in humans and subsequent excretion in human waste, resulting in discharge into surface waters by wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) effluent. One pharmaceutical found in particularly high abundance in recent WWTP effluent and surface water studies is metformin, one of the world's most widely prescribed antidiabetic drugs. Interactions between insulin signaling and steroidogenesis suggest potential endocrine-disrupting effects of metformin found in the aquatic environment. Adult fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) were chronically exposed to metformin for 4 wk, at 40 µg/L, a level similar to the average found in WWTP effluent in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. Genetic endpoints related to metabolism and endocrine function as well as reproduction-related endpoints were examined. Metformin treatment induced significant up-regulation of messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) encoding the egg-protein vitellogenin in male fish, an indication of endocrine disruption. The present study, the first to study the effects of environmentally relevant metformin exposure in fathead minnows, demonstrates the need for further study of the endocrine-disrupting effects of metformin in aquatic organisms. PMID:25358780

  17. Designing at Scale: Lessons in Relevance, Quality, and Equity from ChangeScale, a Bay Area environmental education collaborative

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babcock, E.

    2015-12-01

    The best environmental education equips people with the know-how and drive to create healthy communities and a healthy planet. While there are many wonderful organizations providing environmental learning, ensuring quality, cultural relevance and equity of access remains an elusive goal--especially if environmental education organizations work in isolation. Organizations across 12 counties in the Bay Area have come together to create a different model. They have founded ChangeScale, a regional collaborative dedicated to providing high quality environmental education to hundreds of thousands of youth---by working together. ChangeScale's work involves setting up school district-level partnerships, providing technical assistance to local environmental education networks, and training environmental educators across the region. In this talk, the presenter, who is a founding member and steering committee chair for ChangeScale, will outline the challenges of working at a regional scale with dozens of organizations. She will share the processes ChangeScale has used to develop a business plan and build membership. She will conclude by sharing the short term and long term potential impacts of working collectively for environmental literacy in the Bay Area.

  18. Goal relevance influences performance monitoring at the level of the FRN and P3 components.

    PubMed

    Walentowska, Wioleta; Moors, Agnes; Paul, Katharina; Pourtois, Gilles

    2016-07-01

    The feedback-related negativity (FRN) provides a reliable ERP marker of performance monitoring (PM). It is usually larger for negative compared to positive feedback, and for unexpected relative to expected feedback. In two experiments, we assessed whether these effects could be modulated by goal relevance, defined as feedback informativeness (reliability) and/or impact on a person's goals. EEG (64-channel) was recorded while 30 participants (in each experiment) performed a speeded go/no-go task across blocks in which the feedback on task performance was deemed either relevant or not. At the ERP level, the FRN component was larger for (frequent) negative compared to (deviant) positive feedback exclusively when the feedback was relevant (Experiment 1). When the probability of positive and negative feedback was balanced (Experiment 2), this valence-driven FRN effect was absent. However, across these two experiments, the FRN was always larger for irrelevant than relevant feedback. Moreover, the subsequent P300 component was larger for feedback in the relevant than the irrelevant blocks. This effect was valence unspecific in Experiment 1, while in Experiment 2 larger P3 amplitudes were recorded for negative than positive (relevant) feedback. Across the two experiments, a larger correct-related negativity in the irrelevant than relevant context was also observed, suggesting that PM is flexible. These ERP findings indicate that goal relevance influences feedback (and response) processing during PM, with two nonoverlapping neurophysiological effects: It gates reward prediction error brain mechanisms (FRN effect), before enhancing subsequent motivational processes (P300 effect). PMID:27091565

  19. Studies of the surface reactivity of metal oxyhydroxides and sulfides with relevance to environmental chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierre-Louis, Andro-Marc

    With the benefits of an ever increasing advance of industrialization around the globe come formidable environmental problems. Three environmental problems that have relevance to the research described in this thesis are the 1) buildup of atmospheric CO2 gas through the burning of fossil fuels, 2) eutrophication of aquatic systems, and 3) the acidification of environments from acid mine drainage (AMD) resulting from coal-mining activities. In particular research is presented in this thesis that investigated the surface chemistry of CO2 and phosphate (PO43-) on a suite of environmentally relevant iron oxyhydroxide materials and the chemistry of phospholipid molecules on environmentally relevant iron sulfide surfaces to suppress AMD. To develop a microscopic understanding of the surface chemistry of the different systems, an array of experimental and computational techniques were used in the research. Techniques included X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, atomic adsorption, X-ray diffraction, scanning transmission microscopy with electron dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (STEM/EDS), ion chromatography (IC), and attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform Infrared (ATR-FTIR). Results from the latter technique were interpreted with the aid of density function theory (DFT) calculations. Iron oxyhydroxides, which consisted of ferrihydrite (FeOOH), goethite (α-FeOOH), ferrimagnetic ferrihydrite (FerriFh), and aluminum-doped iron oxyhydroxide (content from 0-100 mol%) were synthesized and studied before and after exposure to gaseous CO2, CO32-, and PO43- species. FeOOH and mixed Al/Fe oxyhydroxide surfaces showed high affinities for the formation of carbonate and bicarbonate species upon exposure to gaseous CO2. Within the Al/Fe oxyhydroxide circumstance, a low Al level of incorporation in the iron oxyhydroxide structure caused a slight increase in surface area and increase in the amount of oxyanion (e.g., CO32- or PO43-) adsorption up to an Al level of 30 mol%. Significant

  20. Studies of the surface reactivity of metal oxyhydroxides and sulfides with relevance to environmental chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierre-Louis, Andro-Marc

    With the benefits of an ever increasing advance of industrialization around the globe come formidable environmental problems. Three environmental problems that have relevance to the research described in this thesis are the 1) buildup of atmospheric CO2 gas through the burning of fossil fuels, 2) eutrophication of aquatic systems, and 3) the acidification of environments from acid mine drainage (AMD) resulting from coal-mining activities. In particular research is presented in this thesis that investigated the surface chemistry of CO2 and phosphate (PO43-) on a suite of environmentally relevant iron oxyhydroxide materials and the chemistry of phospholipid molecules on environmentally relevant iron sulfide surfaces to suppress AMD. To develop a microscopic understanding of the surface chemistry of the different systems, an array of experimental and computational techniques were used in the research. Techniques included X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, atomic adsorption, X-ray diffraction, scanning transmission microscopy with electron dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (STEM/EDS), ion chromatography (IC), and attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform Infrared (ATR-FTIR). Results from the latter technique were interpreted with the aid of density function theory (DFT) calculations. Iron oxyhydroxides, which consisted of ferrihydrite (FeOOH), goethite (α-FeOOH), ferrimagnetic ferrihydrite (FerriFh), and aluminum-doped iron oxyhydroxide (content from 0-100 mol%) were synthesized and studied before and after exposure to gaseous CO2, CO32-, and PO43- species. FeOOH and mixed Al/Fe oxyhydroxide surfaces showed high affinities for the formation of carbonate and bicarbonate species upon exposure to gaseous CO2. Within the Al/Fe oxyhydroxide circumstance, a low Al level of incorporation in the iron oxyhydroxide structure caused a slight increase in surface area and increase in the amount of oxyanion (e.g., CO32- or PO43-) adsorption up to an Al level of 30 mol%. Significant

  1. Base-catalyzed reactions of environmentally relevant N-chloro-piperidines. A quantum-chemical study.

    PubMed

    Šakić, Davor; Zipse, Hendrik; Vrček, Valerije

    2011-06-01

    Electronic structure methods have been applied to calculate the gas and aqueous phase reaction energies for base-induced rearrangements of N-chloropiperidine, N-chloro-3-(hydroxymethyl)piperidine, and N-chloro-4-(4-fluorophenyl)-3-(hydroxymethyl)piperidine. These derivatives have been selected as representative models for studying the chemical fate of environmentally relevant chloramines. The performance of different computational methods (MP2, MP4, QCISD, B3LYP and B2PLYP) for calculating the thermochemistry of rearrangement reactions was assessed. The latter method produces energies similar to those obtained at G3B3(+) level, which themselves have been tested against experimental results. Experimental energy barriers and enthalpies for ring inversion, nitrogen inversion and dehydrochlorination reactions in N-chloropiperidine have been accurately reproduced when solvent effects have been included. It was also found that the combined use of continuum solvation models (e.g. CPCM) and explicit consideration of a single water molecule is sufficient to properly describe the water-assisted rearrangement of N-chlorinated compounds in basic media. In the case of N-chloro-4-(4-fluorophenyl)-3-(hydroxymethyl)piperidine, which represents the chlorinated metabolite of the antidepressant paroxetine, several different reactions (intramolecular addition, substitution, and elimination reactions) have been investigated. Transition state structures for these processes have been located together with minimum energy structures of conceivable products. Imine 4A is predicted to be the most stable reaction product, closely followed by imine 4B and oxazinane 8, while formation of isoxazolidine 7 is much less favourable. Calculated reaction barriers in aqueous solution are quite similar for all four processes, the lowest barrier being predicted for the formation of imine 4A. PMID:21503305

  2. An aggregate analysis of personal care products in the environment: Identifying the distribution of environmentally-relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Hopkins, Zachary R; Blaney, Lee

    2016-01-01

    Over the past 3-4 decades, per capita consumption of personal care products (PCPs) has steadily risen, resulting in increased discharge of the active and inactive ingredients present in these products into wastewater collection systems. PCPs comprise a long list of compounds employed in toothpaste, sunscreen, lotions, soaps, body washes, and insect repellants, among others. While comprehensive toxicological studies are not yet available, an increasing body of literature has shown that PCPs of all classes can impact aquatic wildlife, bacteria, and/or mammalian cells at low concentrations. Ongoing research efforts have identified PCPs in a variety of environmental compartments, including raw wastewater, wastewater effluent, surface water, wastewater solids, sediment, groundwater, and drinking water. Here, an aggregate analysis of over 5000 reported detections was conducted to better understand the distribution of environmentally-relevant PCP concentrations in, and between, these compartments. The distributions were used to identify whether aggregated environmentally-relevant concentration ranges intersected with available toxicity data. For raw wastewater, wastewater effluent, and surface water, a clear overlap was present between the 25th-75th percentiles and identified toxicity levels. This analysis suggests that improved wastewater treatment of antimicrobials, UV filters, and polycyclic musks is required to prevent negative impacts on aquatic species. PMID:27128715

  3. An Integrated Proteomic and Metabolomic Study on the Chronic Effects of Mercury in Suaeda salsa under an Environmentally Relevant Salinity

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiaoli; Wu, Huifeng; Ji, Chenglong; Wei, Lei; Zhao, Jianmin; Yu, Junbao

    2013-01-01

    As an environmental contaminant, mercury is of great concern due to its high risk to environmental and human health. The halophyte Suaeda salsa is the dominant plant in the intertidal zones of the Yellow River Delta (YRD) where has been contaminated by mercury in some places. This study aimed at evaluating the chronic effects of mercury (Hg2+, 20 µg L−1) and the influence of an environmentally relevant salinity (NaCl, 500 mM) on mercury-induced effects in S. salsa. A total of 43 protein spots with significant changes were identified in response to Hg2+, salinity and combined Hg2+ and salinity. These proteins can be categorized into diverse functional classes, related to metabolic processes, photosynthesis, stress response, protein fate, energy metabolism, signaling pathways and immunosuppression. Metabolic responses demonstrated that Hg2+ could disturb protein and energy metabolisms in S. salsa co-exposed with or without salinity. In addition, both antagonistic and synergistic effects between Hg2+ and salinity were confirmed by differential levels of proteins (magnesium-chelatase and ribulose-l,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase) and metabolites (valine, malonate, asparagine, glycine, fructose and glucose) in S. salsa. These findings suggest that a combination of proteomics and metabolomics can provide insightful information of environmental contaminant-induced effects in plants at molecular levels. PMID:23696864

  4. Oil Recovery from Water under Environmentally Relevant Conditions Using Magnetic Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Mirshahghassemi, Seyyedali; Lead, Jamie R

    2015-10-01

    Large oil spills and oily wastewater discharges from ships and industrial activities can have serious impacts on the environment with potentially major economic impacts. Current oil remediation techniques are inefficient and may have deleterious environmental consequences. However, nanotechnology offers a new route to potentially remediate oil pollution. In this study, a cheap and facile hydrothermal method was developed to synthesize polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated magnetite nanoparticles to separate a reference MC252 oil from oil-water mixture under environmentally relevant conditions. Fluorescence and Proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy results showed near 100% oil removal from oil-water mixture in the ultrapure water under optimum condition. Based on gas chromatography-mass spectrometry data, approximately 100% of lower molecular mass alkanes (C9-C21) were removed within 10 min of magnetic separation and by increasing the separation time to 40 min, greater than 67% of C22-25 alkanes were removed. Moreover, nanoparticles removed near 100% oil from synthetic seawater solutions in the presence and absence of fulvic acid showing excellent oil removal capacity of the nanoparticles under different conditions. Results show that these nanoparticles can be utilized to remove oil over a short time with a high removal efficiency under environmentally relevant conditions. PMID:26358198

  5. Pollen Contaminated With Field-Relevant Levels of Cyhalothrin Affects Honey Bee Survival, Nutritional Physiology, and Pollen Consumption Behavior.

    PubMed

    Dolezal, Adam G; Carrillo-Tripp, Jimena; Miller, W Allen; Bonning, Bryony C; Toth, Amy L

    2016-02-01

    Honey bees are exposed to a variety of environmental factors that impact their health, including nutritional stress, pathogens, and pesticides. In particular, there has been increasing evidence that sublethal exposure to pesticides can cause subtle, yet important effects on honey bee health and behavior. Here, we add to this body of knowledge by presenting data on bee-collected pollen containing sublethal levels of cyhalothrin, a pyrethroid insecticide, which, when fed to young honey bees, resulted in significant changes in lifespan, nutritional physiology,and behavior. For the first time, we show that when young, nest-aged bees are presented with pollen containing field-relevant levels of cyhalothrin, they reduce their consumption of contaminated pollen. This indicates that, at least for some chemicals, young bees are able to detect contamination in pollen and change their behavioral response, even if the contamination levels do not prevent foraging honey bees from collecting the contaminated pollen. PMID:26476556

  6. Relevance of Bt toxin interaction studies for environmental risk assessment of genetically modified crops.

    PubMed

    De Schrijver, Adinda; De Clercq, Patrick; de Maagd, Ruud A; van Frankenhuyzen, Kees

    2015-12-01

    In recent years, different Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) toxin-encoding genes have been combined or 'stacked' in genetically modified (GM) crops. Synergism between Bt proteins may occur and thereby increase the impact of the stacked GM event on nontarget invertebrates compared to plants expressing a single Bt gene. On the basis of bioassay data available for Bt toxins alone or in combination, we argue that the current knowledge of Bt protein interactions is of limited relevance in environmental risk assessment (ERA). PMID:26032006

  7. Lessons from the Navajo: Assistance with Environmental Data Collection Ensures Cultural Humility and Data Relevance

    PubMed Central

    deLemos, Jamie; Rock, Tommy; Brugge, Doug; Slagowski, Naomi; Manning, Thomas; Lewis, Johnnye

    2008-01-01

    Background The Navajo Nation suffers from a legacy of environmental pollution from historical uranium mining activities, resulting in adverse public health outcomes and continuous exposure. Objective Partner with a Navajo graduate student and community members in a field campaign to characterize the spatial distribution and geochemistry of uranium for a multipathway uranium exposure assessment under development by the Dine Network for Environmental Health (DiNEH) project. Methods Attend community meetings, acquire Navajo language skills, and integrate local knowledge into sampling approach of sediment, water, and vegetation. Results Navajo participation (1) helped to foster trust in research efforts during community interactions, (2) taught aspects of Navajo culture and language to maintain positive and respectful relations, and (3) conveyed information on Navajo culture that would impact sampling strategies. Conclusions Community engagement helps to sustain equitable partnerships and aids in culturally appropriate, relevant data collection. PMID:19655034

  8. The effects of antidepressants appear to be rapid and at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Ford, Alex T; Fong, Peter P

    2016-04-01

    The effects of antidepressants on wildlife are currently raising some concern because of an increased number of publications indicating biological effects at environmentally relevant concentrations (<100 ng/L). These results have been met with some scepticism because of the higher concentrations required to detect effects in some species and the perceived slowness to therapeutic effects recorded in humans and other vertebrates. Because their mode of action is thought to be by modulation of the neurotransmitters serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, aquatic invertebrates that possess transporters and receptors sensitive to activation by these pharmaceuticals are potentially affected by them. The authors highlight studies on the effects of antidepressants, particularly on crustacean and molluskan groups, showing that they are susceptible to a wide variety of neuroendocrine disruptions at environmentally relevant concentrations. Interestingly, some effects observed in these species can be observed within minutes to hours of exposure. For example, exposure of amphipod crustaceans to several selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can invoke changes in swimming behavior within hours. In mollusks, exposure to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can induce spawning in male and female mussels and foot detachment in snails within minutes of exposure. In the light of new studies indicating effects on the human brain from selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors using magnetic resonance imaging scans, the authors discuss possible reasons for the discrepancy in former results in relation to the read-across hypothesis, variation in biomarkers used, modes of uptake, phylogenetic distance, and the affinity to different targets and differential sensitivity to receptors. PMID:26031210

  9. Supramolecular Chemistry of Selective Anion Recognition for Anions of Environmental Relevance

    SciTech Connect

    Bowman-James, K.; Wilson, G.; Moyer, B. A.

    2004-12-11

    This project involves the design and synthesis of receptors for oxoanions of environmental importance, including emphasis on high level and low activity waste. Target anions have included primarily oxoanions and a study of the basic concepts behind selective binding of target anions. A primary target has been sulfate because of its deleterious influence on the vitrification of tank wastes

  10. ANNUAL REPORT. SUPRAMOLECULAR CHEMISTRY OF SELECTIVE ANION RECOGNITION FOR ANIONS OF ENVIRONMENTAL RELEVANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project involves the design and synthesis of receptors for anions of environmental importance, including emphasis on high level and low activity waste. Polyammonium macrocycles as receptors and nitrate as target anion were the focus of the first phase of this project. A seco...

  11. PROGRESS REPORT. SUPRAMOLECULAR CHEMISTRY OF SELECTIVE ANION RECOGNITION FOR ANIONS OF ENVIRONMENTAL RELEVANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project involves the design and synthesis of receptors for oxoanions of environmental importance and specifically those found in high level waste tanks. Polyammonium macrocycles as receptors and nitrate as anion were the focus of the first phase of this project. A second pha...

  12. Complex mixtures: relevance of combined exposure to substances at low dose levels.

    PubMed

    Leeman, Winfried R; Krul, Lisette; Houben, Geert F

    2013-08-01

    Upon analysis of chemically complex food matrices a forest of peaks is likely to be found. Identification of these peaks and concurrent determination of the toxicological relevance upon exposure is very time consuming, expensive and often requires animal studies. Recently, a safety assessment framework based on the Threshold of Toxicological Concern (TTC) was published to assess the safety of chemically complex matrices more efficiently. In this safety assessment framework, the toxicological relevance of exposure to unidentified substances in chemically complex food matrices can be related to the Cramer class III TTC threshold, currently set at 90 μg/day. However, possible additive or synergistic effects of combined exposure is not covered. The current evaluation describes the relevance of combined low dose exposure to unidentified substances in chemically complex food matrices. It is concluded that to some extent cumulative effects at exposure levels for each substance at or below the Cramer class III TTC threshold, being present in a complex mixture including food, might occur. However the health relevance of possible cumulative effects at this dose level is considered to be that low that a need for a correction factor to cover possible cumulative effects is very low to absent. PMID:23597445

  13. Marble wastes and pig slurry improve the environmental and plant-relevant properties of mine tailings.

    PubMed

    Kabas, S; Faz, A; Acosta, J A; Arocena, J M; Zornoza, R; Martínez-Martínez, S; Carmona, D M

    2014-02-01

    Poor soil fertility is often the biggest challenge to the establishment of vegetation in mine wastes deposits. We conducted field trials in the El Gorguel and El Lirio sites in SE Spain, two representative tailing ponds of similar properties except for pH, to understand the environmental and plant-relevant benefits of marble waste (MW) and pig slurry (PS) applications to mine tailings. Low pH (5.4) tailings (El Lirio) exhibit reduction of up to fourfold in bio-availability of metals as shown by the DTPA-Zn, Pb, water-soluble Zn, Pb and up to 3× for water-soluble Cd. Tailings in El Gorguel have high pH (7.4) and did not exhibit significant trends in the reductions of water-extractable Zn, Pb, Cd and Cu. Improvements to the edaphic (plant-relevant) properties of tailings after the amendments are not as sensitive to pH compared to the environmental characteristics. The two sites had increases in aggregate stability, organic matter (total N and organic C) although total N is higher in the El Gorguel (up to 212 μg N kg(-1)) than the El Lirio (up to 26 μg N kg(-1)). However, cation exchange capacities are similar in both sites at 15.2 cmol(+) kg(-1). We conclude that the characteristics, especially pH, of tailing materials significantly influence the fate of metals but not improvements to plant-relevant properties such as cation exchange capacity and aggregate stability 1 year after the application of MW and PS amendments. PMID:23479083

  14. Human health and the environment: Predicting plasma protein binding and metabolic clearance rates of environmentally relevant chemicals.

    EPA Science Inventory

    In silico methods provide a rapid, inexpensive means of screening a wide array of environmentally relevant pollutants, pesticides, fungicides and consumer products for further toxicity testing. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models bridge the gap between in vitro as...

  15. CHANGES IN GENE EXPRESSION PROFILE FOLLOWING SHORT-TERM EXPOSURE TO AN ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT MIXTURE OF PHAHS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Changes in gene expression profile following short-term exposure to an environmentally relevant mixture of PHAHs
    Polyhalogenated aromatic hydrocarbons (PHAH) including, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polychlorinated dibenzodioxins (PCDDS) and polychlorinated dibenzofurans...

  16. Mapping Environmental Inequalities Relevant for Health for Informing Urban Planning Interventions-A Case Study in the City of Dortmund, Germany.

    PubMed

    Flacke, Johannes; Schüle, Steffen Andreas; Köckler, Heike; Bolte, Gabriele

    2016-01-01

    Spatial differences in urban environmental conditions contribute to health inequalities within cities. The purpose of the paper is to map environmental inequalities relevant for health in the City of Dortmund, Germany, in order to identify needs for planning interventions. We develop suitable indicators for mapping socioeconomically-driven environmental inequalities at the neighborhood level based on published scientific evidence and inputs from local stakeholders. Relationships between socioeconomic and environmental indicators at the level of 170 neighborhoods were analyzed continuously with Spearman rank correlation coefficients and categorically applying chi-squared tests. Reclassified socioeconomic and environmental indicators were then mapped at the neighborhood level in order to determine multiple environmental burdens and hotspots of environmental inequalities related to health. Results show that the majority of environmental indicators correlate significantly, leading to multiple environmental burdens in specific neighborhoods. Some of these neighborhoods also have significantly larger proportions of inhabitants of a lower socioeconomic position indicating hotspots of environmental inequalities. Suitable planning interventions mainly comprise transport planning and green space management. In the conclusions, we discuss how the analysis can be used to improve state of the art planning instruments, such as clean air action planning or noise reduction planning towards the consideration of the vulnerability of the population. PMID:27420090

  17. Mapping Environmental Inequalities Relevant for Health for Informing Urban Planning Interventions—A Case Study in the City of Dortmund, Germany

    PubMed Central

    Flacke, Johannes; Schüle, Steffen Andreas; Köckler, Heike; Bolte, Gabriele

    2016-01-01

    Spatial differences in urban environmental conditions contribute to health inequalities within cities. The purpose of the paper is to map environmental inequalities relevant for health in the City of Dortmund, Germany, in order to identify needs for planning interventions. We develop suitable indicators for mapping socioeconomically-driven environmental inequalities at the neighborhood level based on published scientific evidence and inputs from local stakeholders. Relationships between socioeconomic and environmental indicators at the level of 170 neighborhoods were analyzed continuously with Spearman rank correlation coefficients and categorically applying chi-squared tests. Reclassified socioeconomic and environmental indicators were then mapped at the neighborhood level in order to determine multiple environmental burdens and hotspots of environmental inequalities related to health. Results show that the majority of environmental indicators correlate significantly, leading to multiple environmental burdens in specific neighborhoods. Some of these neighborhoods also have significantly larger proportions of inhabitants of a lower socioeconomic position indicating hotspots of environmental inequalities. Suitable planning interventions mainly comprise transport planning and green space management. In the conclusions, we discuss how the analysis can be used to improve state of the art planning instruments, such as clean air action planning or noise reduction planning towards the consideration of the vulnerability of the population. PMID:27420090

  18. Environmental microbiota represents a natural reservoir for dissemination of clinically relevant metallo-beta-lactamases.

    PubMed

    Scotta, Claudia; Juan, Carlos; Cabot, Gabriel; Oliver, Antonio; Lalucat, Jorge; Bennasar, Antonio; Albertí, Sebastián

    2011-11-01

    A total of 10 metallo-β-lactamase-producing isolates of six different species, including Brevundimonas diminuta (n = 3), Rhizobium radiobacter (n = 2), Pseudomonas monteilii (n = 1), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (n = 2), Ochrobactrum anthropi (n = 1), and Enterobacter ludwigii (n = 1), were detected in the sewage water of a hospital. The presence of bla(VIM-13) associated with a Tn1721-class 1 integron structure was detected in all but one of the isolates (E. ludwigii, which produced VIM-2), and in two of them (R. radiobacter), this structure was located on a plasmid, suggesting that environmental bacteria represent a reservoir for the dissemination of clinically relevant metallo-β-lactamase genes. PMID:21859934

  19. Effects of tributyltin on metamorphosis and gonadal differentiation of Xenopus laevis at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Shi, Huahong; Zhu, Pan; Guo, Suzhen

    2014-05-01

    Tributyltin (TBT), a well known endocrine disruptor, has high teratogenicity to embryos of amphibian (Xenopus tropicalis). An amphibian metamorphosis assay (AMA) and a complete AMA (CAMA) were conducted for TBT. In AMA, the body weight, the snout-to-vent length and the hind limb length of X. laevis tadpoles were decreased in tributyltin chloride (TBTCl; 12.5-200 ng/L) treatment groups after 7 days exposure. TBT greatly retarded the development of tadpoles, decreased the number of follicle and induced thyroid follicle cell hyperplasia after 19 days exposure. In CAMA, 10 and 100 ng/L TBTCl led to various malformations of gonad, including intersex, segmental aplasia and multiple ovary cavities of X. laevis following exposure from stages 46 to stage 66. The sex ratio was male-biased in TBT treatment groups. These results suggest that TBT delayed the metamorphosis, inhibited the growth of tadpoles and disrupted the gonadal differentiation of X. laevis at environmentally relevant concentrations. PMID:22903176

  20. Antidepressants at environmentally relevant concentrations affect predator avoidance behavior of larval fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Painter, M.M.; Buerkley, M.A.; Julius, M.L.; Vajda, A.M.; Norris, D.O.; Barber, L.B.; Furlong, E.T.; Schultz, M.M.; Schoenfuss, H.L.

    2009-01-01

    The effects of embryonic and larval exposure to environmentally relevant (ng/L) concentrations of common antidepressants, fluoxetine, sertraline, venlafaxine, and bupropion (singularly and in mixture) on C-start escape behavior were evaluated in fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas). Embryos (postfertilization until hatching) were exposed for 5 d and, after hatching, were allowed to grow in control well water until 12 d old. Similarly, posthatch fathead minnows were exposed for 12 d to these compounds. High-speed (1,000 frames/s) video recordings of escape behavior were collected and transferred to National Institutes of Health Image for frame-by-frame analysis of latency periods, escape velocities, and total escape response (combination of latency period and escape velocity). When tested 12 d posthatch, fluoxetine and venlafaxine adversely affected C-start performance of larvae exposed as embryos. Conversely, larvae exposed for 12 d posthatch did not exhibit altered escape responses when exposed to fluoxetine but were affected by venlafaxine and bupropion exposure. Mixtures of these four antidepressant pharmaceuticals slowed predator avoidance behaviors in larval fathead minnows regardless of the exposure window. The direct impact of reduced C-start performance on survival and, ultimately, reproductive fitness provides an avenue to assess the ecological relevance of exposure in an assay of relatively short duration. ?? 2009 SETAC.

  1. Antidepressants at environmentally relevant concentrations affect predator avoidance behavior of larval fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas).

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Furlong, Edward T.; Barber, Larry B.; Meghan R. McGee; Megan A. Buerkley; Matthew L. Julius; Vajda, Alan M.; Heiko L. Schoenfuss; Schultz, Melissa M.; Norris, David O.

    2009-01-01

    The effects of embryonic and larval exposure to environmentally relevant (ng/L) concentrations of common antidepressants, fluoxetine, sertraline, venlafaxine, and bupropion (singularly and in mixture) on C-start escape behavior were evaluated in fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas). Embryos (postfertilization until hatching) were exposed for 5 d and, after hatching, were allowed to grow in control well water until 12 d old. Similarly, posthatch fathead minnows were exposed for 12 d to these compounds. High-speed (1,000 frames/s) video recordings of escape behavior were collected and transferred to National Institutes of Health Image for frame-by- frame analysis of latency periods, escape velocities, and total escape response (combination of latency period and escape velocity). When tested 12 d posthatch, fluoxetine and venlafaxine adversely affected C-start performance of larvae exposed as embryos. Conversely, larvae exposed for 12 d posthatch did not exhibit altered escape responses when exposed to fluoxetine but were affected by venlafaxine and bupropion exposure. Mixtures of these four antidepressant pharmaceuticals slowed predator avoidance behaviors in larval fathead minnows regardless of the exposure window. The direct impact of reduced C-start performance on survival and, ultimately, reproductive fitness provides an avenue to assess the ecological relevance of exposure in an assay of relatively short duration.

  2. Improving landscape-level environmental impact evaluations.

    SciTech Connect

    Walston, L.J.; LaGory, K.E.; Vinikour, W.; Van Lonkhuyzen, R.L.; Cantwell, B.

    2012-04-01

    New spatial data and advancements in GIS tools allow much more comprehensive and quantitative analyses of the large datasets required when making programmatic evaluations of the ecological effects of proposed activities that cover a large area or region. Understanding the environmental impacts of proposed human developments is critical to making appropriate siting decisions and designing mitigation strategies to reduce impacts on important resources. Impact analyses conducted under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) in Environmental Impact Statements (EISs) or Environmental Assessments (EAs) are intended to determine the resource-specific impacts of proposed activities of federal agencies and their alternatives using the best available information. Impacts to ecological resources are often a primary focus of these analyses. Information used in NEPA analyses include some measure of the known or probable presence of plants and wildlife in the project area, with special emphasis placed on threatened, endangered, and other special-status species. Site-specific information pertaining to ecological resources is usually easier to obtain for small-scale activities such as a local facility, road, or transmission upgrade project, where the ability to conduct fieldwork is more often feasible. However, site-specific data is more difficult-and sometimes impossible-to obtain for proposed activities that could affect a large area or region. These types of analyses often are considered in programmatic NEPA documents, in which a federal agency evaluates the implementation of a broad program or plan. Under these programmatic evaluations, the exact location and size of developments are often not known. Because obtaining quantitative information for ecological resources at such large spatial scales is difficult, programmatic impact evaluations typically rely on sketchy or partial information such as recorded species occurrences, species ranges, and general habitat

  3. Sublethal health effects in laboratory rodents from environmentally relevant exposures to oil sands contaminants.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Estival, Jaime; North, Michelle A; Smits, Judit E G

    2015-12-01

    Increasing activity of oil sands extraction and processing in northern Alberta is marked by ongoing controversy about the nature and extent of associated environmental impacts. Bitumen contains a mixture of toxic chemicals, including metals and residual polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), whose release into the environment poses a distinct risk to the surrounding environment, plus wildlife and human health. In the present study, the authors evaluated several subclinical biomarkers of exposure and effect to mixtures of metals (Pb, Cd, and Hg) and/or PAHs (3 alkylated forms) at environmentally relevant concentrations (100-fold and 10-fold higher than the maximum dissolved concentrations found in snow, to simulate a worst-case scenario), using laboratory mice as a model for future studies of small mammals in the wild. Both metals and alkyl-PAHs exposure were associated with 1) increased relative liver, kidney, and spleen size; 2) alterations in the homeostasis of the antioxidant vitamins A and E in liver; and 3) compromised glutathione redox status in testes, with results also indicating synergistic interactions from co-exposure. The combination of morphometric and oxidative stress biomarkers provide reliable and sensitive measures of the response to contaminant exposure in a mammalian model, suggesting associated physiological costs. Based on the present experimental study, the authors propose that wild small mammals will prove to be valuable sentinel species reflecting sublethal health effects from oil sands-related contaminants. The present study's results also present a basis for the interpretation of future field data. PMID:26139097

  4. Model Organisms Retain an “Ecological Memory” of Complex Ecologically Relevant Environmental Variation

    PubMed Central

    Beer, Karlyn D.; Wurtmann, Elisabeth J.; Pinel, Nicolás

    2014-01-01

    Although tractable model organisms are essential to characterize the molecular mechanisms of evolution and adaptation, the ecological relevance of their behavior is not always clear because certain traits are easily lost during long-term laboratory culturing. Here, we demonstrate that despite their long tenure in the laboratory, model organisms retain “ecological memory” of complex environmental changes. We have discovered that Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1, a halophilic archaeon that dominates microbial communities in a dynamically changing hypersaline environment, simultaneously optimizes fitness to total salinity, NaCl concentration, and the [K]/[Mg] ratio. Despite being maintained under controlled conditions over the last 50 years, peaks in the three-dimensional fitness landscape occur in salinity and ionic compositions that are not replicated in laboratory culturing but are routinely observed in the natural hypersaline environment of this organism. Intriguingly, adaptation to variations in ion composition was associated with differential regulation of anaerobic metabolism genes, suggesting an intertwined relationship between responses to oxygen and salinity. Our results suggest that the ecological memory of complex environmental variations is imprinted in the networks for coordinating multiple cellular processes. These coordination networks are also essential for dealing with changes in other physicochemically linked factors present during routine laboratory culturing and, hence, retained in model organisms. PMID:24413600

  5. A guideline for the identification of environmentally relevant, ionizable organic molecule species.

    PubMed

    Schaffer, Mario; Licha, Tobias

    2014-05-01

    An increasing number of organic compounds detected today in the aquatic environment are ionizable and, therefore, partially or permanently charged (ionic) under the pH conditions encountered in these systems. For evaluating their environmental behavior, which strongly depends on the charge state, the identification of functional groups together with their correct assignment of the respective acidic or basic dissociation constants (pKa) is essential. Despite the growing concern and increasing awareness for ionizable compounds, contradicting and/or confusing information regarding their acid/base properties can be regularly found in the literature, especially when complex structures are encountered. Therefore, we provide a simplified, general, and comprehensive guideline for the identification of ionizable functional groups in organic compounds combined with the correct assignment of their respective pKa values. Beside the explicit definition of basic terms, several tables with more than 30 of the most frequently encountered ionizable compound classes, including their typical pKa value ranges are the centerpiece of the proposed procedure. The straight forward application of the guideline is successfully shown for several environmentally relevant compounds as example. PMID:24412098

  6. Fate of dietary perchlorate in lactating dairy cows: Relevance to animal health and levels in the milk supply

    PubMed Central

    Capuco, A. V.; Rice, C. P.; Baldwin, R. L.; Bannerman, D. D.; Paape, M. J.; Hare, W. R.; Kauf, A. C. W.; McCarty, G. W.; Hapeman, C. J.; Sadeghi, A. M.; Starr, J. L.; McConnell, L. L.; Van Tassell, C. P.

    2005-01-01

    Perchlorate is a goitrogenic anion that competitively inhibits the sodium iodide transporter and has been detected in forages and in commercial milk throughout the U.S. The fate of perchlorate and its effect on animal health were studied in lactating cows, ruminally infused with perchlorate for 5 weeks. Milk perchlorate levels were highly correlated with perchlorate intake, but milk iodine was unaffected, and there were no demonstrable health effects. We provide evidence that up to 80% of dietary perchlorate was metabolized, most likely in the rumen, which would provide cattle with a degree of refractoriness to perchlorate. Data presented are important for assessing the environmental impact on perchlorate concentrations in milk and potential for relevance to human health. PMID:16260728

  7. BEST: Bilingual environmental science training: Kindergarten level

    SciTech Connect

    1996-03-01

    This booklet is one of a series of bilingual guides to environmental-science learning activities for students to do at home. Lesson objectives, materials required, procedure, vocabulary, and subjects integrated into the lesson are described in English for each lesson. A bilingual glossary, alphabetized by English entries, with Spanish equivalents in both English and Spanish, follows the lesson descriptions, and is itself followed by a bibliography of English-language references. This booklet includes descriptions of six lessons covering the senses of touch and sight, the sense of smell, how to distinguish living and non-living things, cell structures, the skeletal system, and the significance of food groups. 8 figs.

  8. Galileo spacecraft system level environmental test results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoffman, A. R.; Schlue, J. W.

    1986-01-01

    Project Galileo, the United States' next planetary mission, will be launched by the Shuttle/Centaur in May 1986. The Galileo spacecraft consists of both a planetary Orbiter and an atmospheric Probe. The spacecraft was environmentally tested as a system in the fall and winter of 1984/1985 at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The protoflight qualification program consisted of vibration, acoustics, pyrotechnic shock, Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) and Solar Thermal Vacuum (STV) tests. This test program was accomplished on a large, complex, dual-spin spacecraft without the benefit of precursor spacecraft prototype tests. This paper discusses the objectives of these tests and the implementation, and summarizes the results.

  9. Relevance of plasma malondialdehyde level and severity of portal hypertension in cirrhotic patients

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Sheng-Lan; Zhu, Xin-Yan; Zhang, Dong-Wei; Zhang, Zhao-Jie; Gao, Heng-Jun; Yang, Chang-Qing

    2015-01-01

    Background: Portal hypertension is one of the death reasons for the liver cirrhosis patients. The oxidative stress is related to the occurrence and development of portal hypertension in cirrhosis. Malondialdehyde (MDA), one of the lipid peroxides, increases substantially in cirrhotic patients. Aims: To evaluate the relevance between the MDA level and portal hypertension in cirrhotic patients. Methods: 60 liver cirrhotic patients and 30 healthy controls were enrolled. The plasma MDA level and general blood tests including ALT, AST, ALB, total bilirubin, and platelet were measured. All people enrolled accepted endoscopic examination and B-Ultrasound check to evaluate the severity of portal hypertension. Results: The MDA plasma level of cirrhotic patients was significantly higher than the controls (P<0.001) and increased significantly accompanied by the severity of liver fibrosis and portal hypertension (P<0.01). Further, the plasma MDA level of cirrhotic patients was significantly correlated with Child-Pugh classification of cirrhosis (r=0.820, P<0.001), the degree of esophageal varices (r=0.857, P<0.001) and the width of portal vein (r=0.652, P<0.001). The ROC curve analyses showed that the plasma MDA level is a strong predictor of liver cirrhosis and portal hypertension. Conclusions: Plasma MDA level may correlate with the severity of portal hypertension in cirrhotic patients. PMID:26379897

  10. Modulation of dopamine release in the striatum by physiologically relevant levels of nicotine.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li; Shang, Shujiang; Kang, Xinjiang; Teng, Sasa; Zhu, Feipeng; Liu, Bin; Wu, Qihui; Li, Mingli; Liu, Wei; Xu, Huadong; Zhou, Li; Jiao, Ruiying; Dou, Haiqiang; Zuo, Panli; Zhang, Xiaoyu; Zheng, Lianghong; Wang, Shirong; Wang, Changhe; Zhou, Zhuan

    2014-01-01

    Striatal dopamine (DA) release can be independently triggered not only by action potentials (APs) in dopaminergic axons but also APs in cholinergic interneurons (ChIs). Nicotine causes addiction by modulating DA release, but with paradoxical findings. Here, we investigate how physiologically relevant levels of nicotine modulate striatal DA release. The optogenetic stimulation of ChIs elicits DA release, which is potently inhibited by nicotine with an IC50 of 28 nM in the dorsal striatum slice. This ChI-driven DA release is predominantly mediated by α6β2* nAChRs. Local electrical stimulus (Estim) activates both dopaminergic axons and ChIs. Nicotine does not affect the AP(DA)-dependent DA release (AP(DA), AP of dopaminergic axon). During burst Estim, nicotine permits the facilitation of DA release by prevention of DA depletion. Our work indicates that cholinergic stimulation-induced DA release is profoundly modulated by physiologically relevant levels of nicotine and resolves the paradoxical observation of nicotine's effects on striatal DA release. PMID:24968237

  11. Multiwalled carbon nanotubes at environmentally relevant concentrations affect the composition of benthic communities.

    PubMed

    Velzeboer, I; Peeters, E T H M; Koelmans, A A

    2013-07-01

    To date, chronic effect studies with manufactured nanomaterials under field conditions are scarce. Here, we report in situ effects of 0, 0.002, 0.02, 0.2, and 2 g/kg multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) in sediment on the benthic community composition after 15 months of exposure. Effects observed after 15 months were compared to those observed after 3 months and to community effects of another carbonaceous material (activated carbon; AC), which was simultaneously tested in a parallel study. Redundancy analysis with variance partitioning revealed a total explained variance of 51.7% of the variation in community composition after 15 months, of which MWCNT dose explained a statistically significant 9.9%. By stepwise excluding the highest MWCNT concentrations in the statistical analyses, MWCNT effects were shown to be statistically significant already at the lowest dose investigated, which can be considered environmentally relevant. We conclude that despite prolonged aging, encapsulation, and burial, MWCNTs can affect the structure of natural benthic communities in the field. This effect was similar to that of AC observed in a parallel experiment, which however was applied at a 50 times higher maximum dose. This suggests that the benthic community was more sensitive to MWCNTs than to the bulk carbon material AC. PMID:23713543

  12. Effects of environmentally relevant mixtures of major ions on a freshwater mussel.

    PubMed

    Ciparis, Serena; Phipps, Andrew; Soucek, David J; Zipper, Carl E; Jones, Jess W

    2015-12-01

    The Clinch and Powell Rivers (Virginia, USA) support diverse mussel assemblages. Extensive coal mining occurs in both watersheds. In large reaches of both rivers, major ion concentrations are elevated and mussels have been extirpated or are declining. We conducted a laboratory study to assess major ion effects on growth and survival of juvenile Villosa iris. Mussels were exposed to pond water and diluted pond water with environmentally relevant major ion mixtures for 55 days. Two treatments were tested to mimic low-flow concentrations of Ca(2+), Mg(2+), [Formula: see text] , [Formula: see text] , K(+) and Cl(-) in the Clinch and Powell Rivers, total ion concentrations of 419 mg/L and 942 mg/L, respectively. Mussel survival (>90%) and growth in the two treatments showed little variation, and were not significantly different than in diluted pond water (control). Results suggest that major ion chronic toxicity is not the primary cause for mussel declines in the Clinch and Powell Rivers. PMID:26412268

  13. Nitrite- and Nitrate-Dependent Methanotrophs - Environmental Detection and Relevance in Freshwater Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ettwig, K. F.

    2014-12-01

    Humans continue to have an enormous impact on global C and N cycles. While a clear stimulation of methane emissions through human activities is evident, the role of also increasingly released nitrogenous compounds as electron acceptors for microbial methane oxidation is not well constrained. We have developed diverse methods for environmental detection of nitrate(NO3-)- and - predominantly - nitrite(NO2-)-dependent methanotrophs, which have been applied to several freshwater environments. In contrast to most metabolically flexible heterotrophic denitrifiers, the microorganisms responsible for methane-dependent nitrate/nitrite reduction seem to be specialized to use methane only, grow slowly and employ pathways different from each other and from model organisms, which necessitate new approaches for the assessment of their environmental relevance. Nitrite-dependent methane oxidation is carried out by bacteria of the NC10 phylum, whereas nitrate-dependent methane oxidizers are close relatives of methanogenic archaea and sulfate-dependent anaerobic methanotrophs (ANME-2). Laboratory enrichment cultures of the nitrite-reducing methanotroph Methylomirabilis oxyfera (NC10 phylum) have formed the basis for its genetic and physiological characterization and the development of several independent methods for its sensitive detection. M. oxyfera differs from all known microorganisms by encoding an incomplete denitrification pathway, in which the last 2 steps, the reduction of NO via N2O to N2, apparently is replaced by the dismutation of NO to N2 and O2. The intracellularly produced O2 is used for methane oxidation via a methane monooxygenase, analogously to the phylogenetically unrelated proteobacterial methanotrophs. But unlike in proteobacteria, C is not assimilated from methane, but rather CO2, with important consequences for the interpretation of environmental isotope labelling studies. In addition, M. oxyfera is characterized by a distinct PLFA profile, including

  14. County-level environmental quality and associations with cancer incidence

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cancer has been associated with individual ambient environmental exposures such as PM2.5 and arsenic. However, the role of the overall ambient environment is not well-understood. A novel county-level Environmental Quality Index (EQI) was developed for all U.S. counties (n=3,141)...

  15. Environmental Education Inservice Training Packet for the Intermediate Level.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Upper Mississippi River ECO-Center, Thomson, IL.

    The inservice teacher training packet, developed with help from the environmental education program of the Upper Mississippi River ECO-Center, is designed to help intermediate-level teachers develop teaching skills which will enable them to introduce environmental or outdoor education to their students and develop those concepts, attitudes, and…

  16. Exposure of Female Rats to an Environmentally Relevant Mixture of Brominated Flame Retardants Targets the Ovary, Affecting Folliculogenesis and Steroidogenesis.

    PubMed

    Lefèvre, Pavine L C; Berger, Robert G; Ernest, Sheila R; Gaertner, Dean W; Rawn, Dorothea F K; Wade, Michael G; Robaire, Bernard; Hales, Barbara F

    2016-01-01

    Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are incorporated into various consumer products to prevent flame propagation. These compounds leach into the domestic environment, resulting in chronic exposure and contamination. Pregnancy failure is associated with high levels of BFRs in human follicular fluid, raising serious questions regarding their impact on female reproductive health. The goal of this study is to elucidate the effects of an environmentally relevant BFR mixture on female rat ovarian functions (i.e., folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis). A BFR dietary mixture formulated to mimic the relative BFR congener levels in North American house dust was administered to adult female Sprague-Dawley rats from 2 to 3 wk before mating until Gestational Day 20; these diets were designed to deliver nominal doses of 0, 0.06, 20, or 60 mg/kg/day of the BFR mixture. Exposure to BFRs triggered an approximately 50% increase in the numbers of preantral and antral follicles and an enlargement of the antral follicles in the ovaries of the dams. A significant reduction in the expression of catalase, an antioxidant enzyme, and downregulation of the expression of insulin-like factor 3 (Insl3) and 17alpha-hydroxylase (Cyp17a1) were observed in the ovary. In addition, BFR exposure affected steroidogenesis; we observed a significant decrease in circulating 17-hydroxypregnenolone and an increase in testosterone concentrations in BFR-exposed dams. Thus, BFRs target ovarian function in the rat, adversely affecting both folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis. PMID:26607716

  17. Rate constants and mechanisms for the crystallization of Al nano-goethite under environmentally relevant conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bazilevskaya, Ekaterina; Archibald, Douglas D.; Martínez, Carmen Enid

    2012-07-01

    Mobile inorganic and organic nanocolloidal particles originate-from and interact-with bulk solid phases in soil and sediment environments, and as such, they contribute to the dynamic properties of environmental systems. In particular, ferrihydrite and (nano)goethite are the most abundant of nanocolloidal Fe oxy(hydr)oxides in these environments. We therefore investigated the ferrihydrite to goethite phase transformation using experimental reaction conditions that mimicked environmental conditions where the formation of nanocolloidal Fe oxy(hydr)oxides may occur: slow titration of dilute solutions to pH 5 at 25 °C with and without 2 mol% Al. Subsequently, the rate constants from 54-d nano-goethite aging/crystallization experiments at 50 °C were determined using aliquots pulled for vibrational spectroscopy (including multivariate curve resolution, MCR, analyses of infrared spectra) and synchrotron-based X-ray diffraction (XRD). We also present a mechanistic model that accounts for the nano-goethite crystallization observed by the aforementioned techniques, and particle structural characteristics observed by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). In contrast to the common assumption that metastable ferrihydrite precipitates first, before it transforms to goethite, the presence of characteristic infrared bands in freshly synthesized nanoparticle suspensions indicate goethite can precipitate directly from solution under environmentally relevant conditions: low Fe concentration, ambient temperature, and pH maintained at 5. However, the presence of 2 mol% Al prevented direct goethite precipitation. Rate constants obtained by fitting the contributions from the MCR-derived goethite-like component to the OH-stretching region were (7.4 ± 1.1) × 10-7 s-1 for 0% Al and (4.2 ± 0.4) × 10-7 s-1 for 2 mol% Al suspensions. Rate constants derived from intensities of OH-bending infrared vibrations (795 and 895 cm-1) showed similar values

  18. Gestational and Early Postnatal Exposure to an Environmentally Relevant Mixture of Brominated Flame Retardants: General Toxicity and Skeletal Variations.

    PubMed

    Tung, Emily W Y; Yan, Han; Lefèvre, Pavine L C; Berger, Robert G; Rawn, Dorothea F K; Gaertner, Dean W; Kawata, Alice; Rigden, Marc; Robaire, Bernard; Hales, Barbara F; Wade, Michael G

    2016-06-01

    Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are stable environmental contaminants known to exert endocrine-disrupting effects. Developmental exposure to polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) is correlated with impaired thyroid hormone signaling, as well as estrogenic and anti-androgenic effects. As previous studies have focused on a single congener or technical mixture, the purpose of the current study was to examine the effects of gestational and early postnatal exposure to an environmentally relevant mixture of BFRs designed to reflect house dust levels of PBDEs and hexabromocyclododecane on postnatal developmental outcomes. Pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to the PBDE mixture from preconception to weaning (PND 21) through the diet containing 0, 0.75, 250, and 750 mg mixture/kg diet. BFR exposure induced transient reductions in body weight at PND 35 in male and from PND 30-45 in female offspring (250 and 750 mg/kg). Liver weights (PND 21) and xenobiotic metabolizing enzyme activities (PND 21 and 46) were increased in both male and female offspring exposed to 250 and 750 mg/kg diets. Furthermore, serum T4 levels were reduced at PND 21 in both,male and female offspring (250 and 750 mg/kg). At PND 21, Serum alkaline phosphatase (ALP) was decreased in males exposed to 750 mg/kg dietat, and females exposed to 250 and 750 mg/kg diets. At PND 46 ALP was significantly elevated in males (250 and 750 mg/kg). Variations in the cervical vertebrae and phalanges were observed in pups at PND 4 (250 and 750 mg/kg). Therefore, BFR exposure during gestation through to weaning alters developmental programming in the offspring. The persistence of BFRs in the environment remains a cause for concern with regards to developmental toxicity. PMID:27286044

  19. Clinical Relevance of Environmental Factors in the Pathogenesis of Autoimmune Thyroid Disease.

    PubMed

    Wiersinga, Wilmar M

    2016-06-01

    Genetic factors contribute for about 70% to 80% and environmental factors for about 20% to 30% to the pathogenesis of autoimmune thyroid disease (AITD). Relatives of AITD patients carry a risk to contract AITD themselves. The 5-year risk can be quantified by the so-called Thyroid Events Amsterdam-score, based on serum thyroid-stimulating hormone, thyroid peroxidase (TPO)-antibodies and family history. Subjects at risk may ask what they can do to prevent development of AITD. This review summarizes what is known about modulation of exposure to environmental factors in terms of AITD prevention. To stop smoking decreases the risk on Graves disease but increases the risk on Hashimoto disease. Moderate alcohol intake provides some protection against both Graves and Hashimoto disease. Low selenium intake is associated with a higher prevalence of thyroid autoimmunity, but evidence that selenium supplementation may lower TPO antibodies and prevent subclinical hypothyroidism remains inconclusive. Low serum vitamin D levels are associated with a higher prevalence of TPO antibodies, but intervention studies with extra vitamin D have not been done yet. Stress may provoke Graves hyperthyroidism but not Hashimoto thyroiditis. Estrogen use have been linked to a lower prevalence of Graves disease. The postpartum period is associated with an increased risk of AITD. Taking together, preventive interventions to diminish the risk of AITD are few, not always feasible, and probably of limited efficacy. PMID:27184015

  20. Clinical Relevance of Environmental Factors in the Pathogenesis of Autoimmune Thyroid Disease

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Genetic factors contribute for about 70% to 80% and environmental factors for about 20% to 30% to the pathogenesis of autoimmune thyroid disease (AITD). Relatives of AITD patients carry a risk to contract AITD themselves. The 5-year risk can be quantified by the so-called Thyroid Events Amsterdam-score, based on serum thyroid-stimulating hormone, thyroid peroxidase (TPO)-antibodies and family history. Subjects at risk may ask what they can do to prevent development of AITD. This review summarizes what is known about modulation of exposure to environmental factors in terms of AITD prevention. To stop smoking decreases the risk on Graves disease but increases the risk on Hashimoto disease. Moderate alcohol intake provides some protection against both Graves and Hashimoto disease. Low selenium intake is associated with a higher prevalence of thyroid autoimmunity, but evidence that selenium supplementation may lower TPO antibodies and prevent subclinical hypothyroidism remains inconclusive. Low serum vitamin D levels are associated with a higher prevalence of TPO antibodies, but intervention studies with extra vitamin D have not been done yet. Stress may provoke Graves hyperthyroidism but not Hashimoto thyroiditis. Estrogen use have been linked to a lower prevalence of Graves disease. The postpartum period is associated with an increased risk of AITD. Taking together, preventive interventions to diminish the risk of AITD are few, not always feasible, and probably of limited efficacy. PMID:27184015

  1. The environmental behaviour of polychlorinated phenols and its relevance to cork forest ecosystems: a review.

    PubMed

    McLellan, Iain; Carvalho, Mariana; Silva Pereira, Cristina; Hursthouse, Andrew; Morrison, Calum; Tatner, Paul; Martins, Isabel; San Romão, M Vitória; Leitão, Maria

    2007-10-01

    Pentachlorophenol (PCP) has been used as a herbicide, biocide and preservative worldwide since the 1930s and as a result, extensive and prolonged contamination exists. The environmental impact increases when its many degradation products are taken into consideration. A number of chloroanisols and their related chlorophenols have been found in cork slabs collected from Portuguese oak tree forests before stopper manufacturing, and contamination by PCP and polychlorinated anisole (PCA) has been detected in Canadian forests. It is suggested that the use of polychlorinated phenols, in particular PCP, is thought to be a cause of the cork taint problem in wine, a major socio-economic impact not only for industry but on sensitive and highly biodiverse ecosystems. It also highlights particular issues relating to the regional regulation of potentially toxic chemicals and global economics world wide. To fully understand the impact of contamination sources, the mechanisms responsible for the fate and transport of PCP and its degradation products and assessment of their environmental behaviour is required. This review looks at the current state of knowledge of soil sorption, fate and bioavailability and identifies the challenges of degradation product identification and the contradictory evidence from field and laboratory observations. The need for a systematic evaluation of PCP contamination in relation to cork forest ecosystems and transfer of PCP between trophic levels is emphasised by discrepancies in bioaccumulation and toxicity. This is essential to enable long term management of not only transboundary contaminants, but also the sustainable management of socially and economically important forest ecosystems. PMID:17909638

  2. The Effects of Relevance and Confidence Strategies on Writing Apprehension, Motivational Levels, and Writing Performance on Undergraduate Composition Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spain, Linda Monk

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated writing apprehension, motivational levels, and writing performance of 68 undergraduates enrolled in four freshman composition courses during one semester. Participants in the treatment groups received relevance, confidence, or a combination of relevance and confidence motivational strategies based on Keller's ARCS model. In…

  3. Adsorption of Sulfamethazine from Environmentally Relevant Aqueous Matrices onto Hypercrosslinked Adsorbent MN250.

    PubMed

    Grimmett, Maria E

    2015-07-01

    Four hundred tons of sulfamethazine are fed to livestock annually in North America for disease prevention and growth promotion, but the majority is excreted unmetabolized into the environment. Due to its slow degradation and high mobility, sulfamethazine contaminates groundwater and causes aquatic ecosystem damage. Sulfamethazine remediation methods are not universally effective, necessitating newer techniques. Hypercrosslinked polystyrene adsorbents show promise because of high surface areas, durability, and regenerable properties. Using batch techniques, sulfamethazine adsorption onto Purolite MN250 was evaluated in the presence of dissolved humic acid and under variable pH and ionic strength. The adsorption capacity () of MN250 for sulfamethazine with humic acid was 109.3 mg g. In simulated groundwater, at pH 5 was 51 to 62% higher than at pH 9. The maximum at pH 7 (144.0 mg g) exceeded pH 5 performance (128.3 mg g). In 0.005 M KCl, was 181.0 mg g, which decreased by 34% in 0.05 M KCl. In 0.5 M, KCl, (153.4 mg g) increased 26% over 0.05 M KCl. For all matrices, equilibration was attained between 120 and 168 h, best fit by Ho's pseudo-second-order model. Overall, is pH dependent because the sulfamethazine speciation and the zeta potential of MN250 vary as a function of pH. Increasing ionic strength initially decreases by altering the activity coefficient of sulfamethazine and by altering the properties of the electrical double layer, while salting-out becomes prominent at seawater concentration. MN250's high sulfamethazine capacity in environmentally relevant aqueous matrices highlights its potential for groundwater remediation. PMID:26437099

  4. Transport of fluorescently labeled hydroxyapatite nanoparticles in saturated granular media at environmentally relevant concentrations of surfactants

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Dengjun; Su, Chuming; Liu, Chongxuan; Zhou, Dongmei

    2014-05-01

    Hydroxyapatite nanoparticle (nHAP) is being used to remediate soils and aquifers contaminated with metals and radionuclides; however, the mobility of nHAP is still poorly understood in subsurface granular environments. In this study, transport and retention kinetics of alizarin red S (ARS)-labeled nHAP were investigated in water-saturated quartz sand at low concentrations of surfactants: sodium dodecyl benzene sulfonate (SDBS, an anionic surfactant, 0–50 mg L–1) and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB, a cationic surfactant, 0–5 mg L–1). Both surfactants were found to have a marked effect on the electrokinetic properties of ARS-nHAP and, consequently, on their transport and retention behaviors. Transport of nanoparticles (NPs) increased significantly with increasing SDBS concentration, largely because of enhanced colloidal stability and reduced aggregate size arising from enhanced electrostatic, osmotic, and elastic-steric repulsions between ARS-nHAP and sand grains. Conversely, transport decreased significantly in the presence of increasing CTAB concentrations due to reduced surface charge and consequential enhanced aggregation of the NPs. Osmotic and elastic-steric repulsions played only a minor role in enhancing the colloidal stability of ARS-nHAP in the presence of CTAB. Retention profiles of ARS-nHAP exhibited hyperexponential-shapes (decreasing rates of retention with increasing distance) for all conditions tested, and became more pronounced as CTAB concentration increased. The phenomenon was attributed to the aggregation and ripening of ARS-nHAP in the presence of surfactants, particularly CTAB. Overall, the present study suggests that surfactants at environmentally relevant concentrations may be an important consideration in employing nHAP for engineered in-situ remediation of certain metals and radionuclides in contaminated soils and aquifers.

  5. Cumulative toxicity of an environmentally relevant mixture of nine regulated disinfection by-products in a multigenerational rat reproductive bioassay

    EPA Science Inventory

    CUMULATIVE TOXICITY OF AN ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT MIXTURE OF NINE REGULATED DISINFECTION BY-PRODUCTS IN A MULTIGENERATIONAL RAT REPRODUCTIVE BIOASSAY J E Simmons, GR. Klinefelter, JM Goldman, AB DeAngelo, DS Best, A McDonald, LF Strader, AS Murr, JD Suarez, MH George, ES Hunte...

  6. Excessive versus physiologically relevant levels of retinoic acid in embryonic stem cell differentiation.

    PubMed

    Sheikh, Bilal N; Downer, Natalie L; Kueh, Andrew J; Thomas, Tim; Voss, Anne K

    2014-06-01

    Over the past two decades, embryonic stem cells (ESCs) have been established as a valuable system to study the complex molecular events that underlie the collinear activation of Hox genes during development. When ESCs are induced to differentiate in response to retinoic acid (RA), Hox genes are transcriptionally activated in their chromosomal order, with the most 3' Hox genes activated first, sequentially followed by more 5' Hox genes. In contrast to the low levels of RA detected during gastrulation (∼33 nM), a time when Hox genes are induced during embryonic development, high levels of RA are used to study Hox gene activation in ESCs in vitro (1-10 µM). This compelled us to compare RA-induced ESC differentiation in vitro with Hox gene activation in vivo. In this study, we show that treatment of ESCs for 2 days with RA best mimics activation of Hox genes during embryonic development. Furthermore, we show that defects in Hox gene expression known to occur in embryos lacking the histone acetyltransferase MOZ (also called MYST3 or KAT6A) were masked in Moz-deficient ESCs when excessive RA (0.5-5 µM) was used. The role of MOZ in Hox gene activation was only evident when ESCs were differentiated at low concentrations of RA, namely 20 nM, which is similar to RA levels in vivo. Our results demonstrate that using RA at physiologically relevant levels to study the activation of Hox genes, more accurately reflects the molecular events during the early phase of Hox gene activation in vivo. PMID:25099890

  7. International safeguards relevant to geologic disposal of high-level wastes and spent fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Pillay, K.K.S.; Picard, R.R.

    1989-01-01

    Spent fuels from once-through fuel cycles placed in underground repositories have the potential to become attractive targets for diversion and/or theft because of their valuable material content and decreasing radioactivity. The first geologic repository in the US, as currently designed, will contain approximately 500 Mt of plutonium, 60,000 Mt of uranium and a host of other fissile and strategically important elements. This paper identifies some of the international safeguards issues relevant to the various proposed scenarios for disposing of the spent fuel. In the context of the US program for geologic disposal of spent fuels, this paper highlights several issues that should be addressed in the near term by US industries, the Department of Energy, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission before the geologic repositories for spent fuels become a reality. Based on US spent fuel discharges, an example is presented to illustrate the enormity of the problem of verifying spent fuel inventories. The geologic disposal scenario for high-level wastes originating from defense facilities produced a practicably irrecoverable'' waste form. Therefore, safeguards issues for geologic disposal of high-level waste now in the US are less pressing. 56 refs. , 2 figs.

  8. The relevance of an elevation in the plasma vasopressin levels to the pathogenesis of Meniere's attack.

    PubMed

    Aoki, M; Asai, M; Nishihori, T; Mizuta, K; Ito, Y; Ando, K

    2007-11-01

    An elevation of plasma vasopressin levels has been frequently observed in Meniere's disease patients. However, little is known regarding the mechanism behind this elevation. The plasma vasopressin levels and plasma osmolality were therefore determined in 18 diagnosed Meniere's disease patients and 20 patients with other types of vertigo, who required admission for severe vertigo attacks. All participants were given questionnaires regarding their clinical and psychological status, including their stress levels and depression status, to evaluate environmental stress events. The plasma vasopressin levels of Meniere's disease patients in the acute phase (4.1 +/- 1.37 pg/ml) were significantly higher compared with with those of other vertigo patients in the acute phase (2.1 +/- 0.41 pg/ml) (P < 0.01). The average plasma osmolality of the Meniere's disease group was higher than that of the other vertigo patients group (P < 0.05). No significant difference in reported stress levels, depression status and prevalence of primary headache between the groups was observed. The plasma vasopressin showed no significant correlation with the patients' clinical data (occurrence of emesis or nausea, prevalence of primary headache, depression status and stress). No correlation between the plasma vasopressin and the plasma osmolarity was observed in the Meniere's disease group. These results suggest that the elevation of plasma vasopressin in the acute phase of Meniere's disease is therefore related to the pathogenesis of Meniere's attacks, and the results obtained may provide helpful information for distinguishing between Meniere's disease and other various inner ear diseases. PMID:17927668

  9. Free and Open Source GIS Tools: Role and Relevance in the Environmental Assessment Community

    EPA Science Inventory

    The presence of an explicit geographical context in most environmental decisions can complicate assessment and selection of management options. These decisions typically involve numerous data sources, complex environmental and ecological processes and their associated models, ris...

  10. Polychlorinated Biphenyl Sources, Emissions and Environmental Levels in School Buildings

    EPA Science Inventory

    Characterize levels of PCBs in air, dust, soil and on surfaces at six schoolsApply an exposure model for estimating children’s exposures to PCBs in schoolsEvaluate which routes of exposure are likely to be the most importantProvide information relevant for developing manage...

  11. Assessing the environmental health relevance of cooling towers--a systematic review of legionellosis outbreaks.

    PubMed

    Walser, Sandra M; Gerstner, Doris G; Brenner, Bernhard; Höller, Christiane; Liebl, Bernhard; Herr, Caroline E W

    2014-03-01

    Bioaerosols from cooling towers are often suspected to cause community-acquired legionellosis outbreaks. Although Legionella infections can mostly be assigned to the emission sources, uncertainty exists about the release and distribution into the air, the occurrence of the respirable virulent form and the level of the infective concentration. Our study aimed to evaluate studies on legionellosis outbreaks attributed to cooling towers published within the last 11 years by means of a systematic review of the literature. 19 legionellosis outbreaks were identified affecting 12 countries. Recurring events were observed in Spain and Great Britain. In total, 1609 confirmed cases of legionellosis and a case-fatality rate of approximately 6% were reported. Duration of outbreaks was 65 days on average. For diagnosis the urinary antigen test was mainly used. Age, smoking, male sex and underlying diseases (diabetes, immunodeficiency) could be confirmed as risk factors. Smoking and underlying diseases were the most frequent risk factors associated with legionellosis in 11 and 10 of the 19 studies, respectively. The meteorological conditions varied strongly. Several studies reported a temporal association of outbreaks with inadequate maintenance of the cooling systems. A match of clinical and environmental isolates by serotyping and/or molecular subtyping could be confirmed in 84% of outbreaks. Legionella-contaminated cooling towers as environmental trigger, in particular in the neighbourhood of susceptible individuals, can cause severe health problems and even death. To prevent and control Legionella contamination of cooling towers, maintenance actions should focus on low-emission cleaning procedures of cooling towers combined with control measurements of water and air samples. Procedures allowing rapid detection and risk assessment in the case of outbreaks are essential for adequate public health measures. Systematic registration of cooling towers will facilitate the

  12. In utero exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations of PCB 153 and PCB 118 disrupts fetal testis development in sheep.

    PubMed

    Krogenæs, Anette K; Ropstad, Erik; Gutleb, Arno C; Hårdnes, Nina; Berg, Vidar; Dahl, Ellen; Fowler, Paul A

    2014-01-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) are environmental pollutants linked to adverse health effects including endocrine disruption and disturbance of reproductive development. This study aimed to determine whether exposure of pregnant sheep to three different mixtures of PCB 153 and PCB 118 affected fetal testis development. Ewes were treated by oral gavage from mating until euthanasia (d 134), producing three groups of fetuses with distinct adipose tissue PCB levels: high PCB 153/low PCB 118 (n = 13), high PCB 118/low PCB 153 (n = 14), and low PCB 153/low PCB 118 (n = 14). Fetal testes and blood samples were collected for investigation of testosterone, testis morphology, and testis proteome. The body weight of the offspring was lower in the high PCB compared to the low PCB group, but there were no significant differences in testis weight between groups when corrected for body weight. PCB exposure did not markedly affect circulating testosterone. There were no significant differences between groups in number of seminiferous tubules, Sertoli cell only tubules, and ratio between relative areas of seminiferous tubules and interstitium. Two-dimensional (2D) gel-based proteomics was used to screen for proteomic alterations in the high exposed groups relative to low PCB 153/low PCB 118 group. Twenty-six significantly altered spots were identified by liquid chromatography (LC)-mass spectroscopy (MS)/MS. Changes in protein regulation affected cellular processes as stress response, protein synthesis, and cytoskeleton regulation. The study demonstrates that in utero exposure to different environmental relevant PCB mixtures exerted subtle effects on developing fetal testis proteome but did not significantly disturb testis morphology and testosterone production. PMID:24754397

  13. Mechanism of uranium(VI) uptake by Saccharomyces cerevisiae under environmentally relevant conditions: batch, HRTEM, and FTIR studies.

    PubMed

    Lu, Xia; Zhou, Xiao-jiao; Wang, Tie-shan

    2013-11-15

    Biosorption is of significance for the safety evaluation of high-level nuclear wastes repositories and remediation of radioactive contamination places. Quantitive study and structural characterization of uranium uptake by both live and heat-killed Saccharomyces cerevisiae at environmentally relevant uranium concentration and with different ionic strengths were carried out. Kinetic investigation showed the equilibrium reached within 15 min. In equilibrium studies, pH shift towards neutral indicated release of hydroxyl ions. pH was the most important factor, which partly affected electrostatic interaction between uranyl ions and S. cerevisiae surface. The high ionic strength inhibited biosorption capacity, which can be explained by a competitive reaction between sodium ions and uranyl ions. Heat killing process significantly enhanced biosorption capacity, showing an order of magnitude higher than that of live cells. High resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) coupled with energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) showed needle-like uranium-phosphate precipitation formed on the cell walls for both live and heat-killed cells. Besides, dark-field micrographs displayed considerable similar uranium-phosphate precipitation presented outside the heat-killed cells. The phosphate released during heat-killing process. FTIR illustrated function groups hydroxyl, carboxyl, phosphate, and amino groups played important role in complexation with uranium. PMID:24041822

  14. Regulatory standards applicable or relevant to the independent Hanford environmental surveillance and oversight program

    SciTech Connect

    King, S.E.; Hendrickson, P.L.; Siegel, M.R.; Woodruff, M.G. ); Belfiglio, J.; Elliott, R.W. )

    1990-03-01

    The authors reviewed federal and state statutes and regulations, as well as Department of Energy (DOE) orders and other guidance material, for potential applicability to the environmental surveillance program conducted for the Hanford site by the Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL). There are no federal or state statutes or regulations which are directly applicable to the environmental surveillance program. However, other regulatory schemes, while not directly applicable to the environmental surveillance program, are important insofar as they are indicative of regulatory concern and direction. Because of the evolving nature of environmental regulations, this area needs to be closely monitored for future impact on environmental surveillance activities. 9 refs.,

  15. Environmental influence on trace element levels in human hair

    SciTech Connect

    Limic, N.; Valkovic, V.

    1986-12-01

    Trace element content of human hair depends on many factors. It has been shown by a large number of investigators that environmental factors play an important role. Elements from air particulates, water, shampoo or other media get incorporated into the hair structure. Here a model is proposed in which different contributions to trace element levels in human hair are factorized and the environmental contribution to the radial and longitudinal concentration profiles can be calculated. With the proper understanding of environmental contamination, hair analysis has better chances of being used as a diagnostic tool.

  16. Environmental management systems at the industrial park level in China.

    PubMed

    Geng, Yong; Côté, Raymond

    2003-06-01

    Environmental management systems (EMSs), such as International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001, can be used as a tool in China by industrial park managers to improve their environmental performance. This article uses the case of the Dalian Economic and Technological Development Zone (DETDZ) to show how to establish a comprehensive environmental management system (CEMS) according to the ISO 14001 standard at the industrial park level by considering local realities. The particularly interesting feature of this case study is the use of a CEMS (in this case, ISO 14001) by the administrative group of the DETDZ to develop a more comprehensive approach to the wide range of environmental issues that they face in running the zone. In essence the goal is to address many of the issues at the level of the zone. The incentives, benefits, and barriers associated with implementing ISO 14001 are described. However, implementation of an EMS should not be thought of as the ultimate objective for an industrial park's environmental management. The next steps include encouraging further public participation and taking an integrated approach leading to an industrial ecosystem, which can realize better environmental performance at the industrial park level. PMID:14565698

  17. A Study of the Environmental Risk Perceptions and Environmental Awareness Levels of High School Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anilan, Burcu

    2014-01-01

    This descriptive research was conducted to determine the levels of environmental risk perceptions and environmental awareness of high school students in Eskisehir. High school students in the towns Tepebasi and Odunpazari in the 2010-2011 school years constitute the universe of the research. The sample of the research is composed of 413 high…

  18. Nanoscale zerovalent iron (nZVI) at environmentally relevant concentrations induced multigenerational reproductive toxicity in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ying-Fei; Chen, Pei-Jen; Liao, Vivian Hsiu-Chuan

    2016-05-01

    Nanoscale zerovalent iron (nZVI) is widely used with large scale for environmental remediation for in situ or ex situ applications. The potential impact of nZVI on biota at environmentally relevant concentrations needs to be elucidated. In this study, the reproductive toxicities of three irons species: carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC)-stabilized nZVI, nanoscale iron oxide (nFe3O4), and ferrous ion (Fe(II)aq) in the soil-dwelling nematode Caenorhabditis elegans were examined. In addition, the generational transfer of reproductive toxicity of CMC-nZVI on C. elegans was investigated. The results showed that CMC-nZVI, nFe3O4, and Fe(II)aq did not cause significant mortality after 24 h exposure at the examined concentrations. Reproductive toxicity assays revealed that CMC-nZVI, nFe3O4, and Fe(II)aq significantly decreased offsprings in parental generation (F0) in accompany with the increased intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). Furthermore, the reproductive toxicity of CMC-nZVI at environmentally relevant concentrations was transferrable from the F0 to the F1 and F2 generations, but then recovered in the F3 and F4 generations. Further evidence showed that total irons were accumulated in the F0 and F1 generations of C. elegans after CMC-nZVI parental exposure. This study demonstrated that environmentally relevant concentrations of CMC-nZVI induced multigenerational reproductive toxicity which can be ascribed to its high production of ROS in F0 generation, toxicity of Fe(II)aq, and iron accumulation in C. elegans. Since nZVI is widely used for environmental remediation, considering the multigenerational toxicity, this study thus implicates a potential environmental risk of nZVI-induced nanotoxicity in the environment. PMID:26830375

  19. Sterilization, high-level disinfection, and environmental cleaning.

    PubMed

    Rutala, William A; Weber, David J

    2011-03-01

    Failure to perform proper disinfection and sterilization of medical devices may lead to introduction of pathogens, resulting in infection. New techniques have been developed for achieving high-level disinfection and adequate environmental cleanliness. This article examines new technologies for sterilization and high-level disinfection of critical and semicritical items, respectively, and because semicritical items carry the greatest risk of infection, the authors discuss reprocessing semicritical items such as endoscopes and automated endoscope reprocessors, endocavitary probes, prostate biopsy probes, tonometers, laryngoscopes, and infrared coagulation devices. In addition, current issues and practices associated with environmental cleaning are reviewed. PMID:21315994

  20. META-ANALYSIS OF THE LIFE STYLE FACTORS RELEVANT TO ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARDS FOR THE AGING POPULATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of this U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study is to characterize activity patterns, physiological changes, and environmental exposures for the aging population. Meta analysis was performed on more than 2000 reviewed articles to evaluate the lifestyle factors ...

  1. County-level environmental quality and associations with individual - and county-level preterm birth

    EPA Science Inventory

    Human health is influenced by simultaneous exposure to stressors and amenities, but research usually considers single exposures. We constructed a county-level Environmental Quality Index (EQI) using principal components analysis with data from five domains (air, water, land, buil...

  2. Environmentally relevant impacts of nano-TiO2 on abiotic degradation of bisphenol A under sunlight irradiation.

    PubMed

    Wu, Wei; Shan, Guoqiang; Wang, Shanfeng; Zhu, Lingyan; Yue, Longfei; Xiang, Qian; Zhang, Yinqing; Li, Zhuo

    2016-09-01

    Understanding the effects of nano-TiO2 particles on the environmental behaviors of organic pollutants in natural aquatic environments is of paramount importance considering that large amount of nano-TiO2 is being released in the environment. In this study, the effect of nano-TiO2 on the degradation of bisphenol A (BPA) in water was investigated under simulated solar light irradiation. The results indicated that nano-TiO2 at environmentally relevant concentration (1 mg/L) could significantly facilitate the abiotic degradation of BPA (also at low concentration) under mild solar light irradiation, with the pseudo first-order rate constant (kobs) for BPA degradation raised by 1-2 orders of magnitude. As reflected by the inhibition experiments, hydroxyl radicals (OHs) and superoxide radical species were the predominant active species responsible for BPA degradation. The reaction was affected by water pH, and the degradation rate was higher at acidic or alkaline conditions than that at neutral condition. Humic acid (HA) also affected the reaction rate, depending on its concentration. At lower concentration (the mass ratio of HA/nano-TiO2 was 0.1:1), HA improved the dispersion and stability of nano-TiO2 in aquatic environment. As a result, the yield of OHs by nano-TiO2 under sunlight irradiation increased and BPA degradation was facilitated. When the HA concentration increased, a coating of HA formed on the surface of nano-TiO2. Although nano-TiO2 became more stable, the light absorption by nano-TiO2 was significantly reduced due to the strong light absorption of the HA coated on the surface. As a consequence, the yield of OH decreased and BPA degradation was depressed. The results imply that nano-TiO2 at low concentration may distinctly mediate BPA degradation, and can contribute to the natural attenuation of some organic pollutants in aquatic environment with low level of HA. However, this process would be significantly reduced in the presence of high level of HA. PMID

  3. SUPRAMOLECULAR CHEMISTRY OF SELECTIVE ANION RECOGNITION FOR ANIONS OF ENVIRONMENTAL RELEVANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The supramolecular chemistry of selective anion recognition by synthetic polyammonium macrocycles will be explored in a comprehensive, long term program designed to provide new solutions to problems critical to the environmental initiative of DOE. Highly shape- and charge selecti...

  4. Gas-phase organics in environmental tobacco smoke: 2. Exposure-relevant emission factors and indirect exposures from habitual smoking

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singer, Brett C.; Hodgson, Alfred T.; Nazaroff, William W.

    Sorption of emitted gas-phase organic compounds onto material surfaces affects environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) composition and exposures indoors. We have introduced a new metric, the exposure relevant emission factor (EREF) that accounts for sorptive uptake and reemission to give the mass of individual ETS constituents available for exposure over a day in which smoking occurs. This paper describes month-long experiments to investigate sorption effects on EREFs and potential ETS exposures under habitual smoking conditions. Cigarettes were smoked in a 50-m 3 furnished room over a 3-h period 6-7 days per week, with continuous ventilation at 0.3, 0.6, or 2.1 h -1. Organic gas concentrations were measured every few days over 4-h "smoking", 10-h "post-smoking" and 10-h "background" periods. Concentration patterns of volatile ETS components including 1,3-butadiene, benzene and acrolein were similar to those calculated for a theoretical non-sorbing tracer, indicating limited sorption. Concentrations of ETS tracers, e.g. 3-ethenylpyridine (3-EP) and nicotine, and lower volatility toxic air contaminants including phenol, cresols, and naphthalene increased as experiments progressed, indicating mass accumulation on surfaces and higher desorption rates. Daily patterns stabilized after week 2, yielding a steady daily cycle of ETS concentrations associated with habitual smoking. EREFs for sorbing compounds were higher under steady cycle versus single-day smoking conditions by ˜50% for 3-EP, and by 2-3 times for nicotine, phenol, cresols, naphthalene, and methylnaphthalenes. Our results provide relevant information about potential indirect exposures from residual ETS (non-smoker enters room shortly after smoker finishes) and from reemission, and their importance relative to direct exposures (non-smoker present during smoking). Under the conditions examined, indirect exposures accounted for a larger fraction of total potential exposures for sorbing versus non-sorbing compounds

  5. Ecologically relevant geomorphic attributes of streams are impaired by even low levels of watershed effective imperviousness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vietz, Geoff J.; Sammonds, Michael J.; Walsh, Christopher J.; Fletcher, Tim D.; Rutherfurd, Ian D.; Stewardson, Michael J.

    2014-02-01

    Urbanization almost inevitably results in changes to stream morphology. Understanding the mechanisms for such impacts is a prerequisite to minimizing stream degradation and achieving restoration goals. However, investigations of urban-induced changes to stream morphology typically use indicators of watershed urbanization that may not adequately represent degrading mechanisms and commonly focus on geomorphic attributes such as channel dimensions that may be of little significance to the ecological goals for restoration. We address these shortcomings by testing if a measure characterizing urban stormwater drainage system connections to streams (effective imperviousness, EI) is a better predictor of change to ecologically relevant geomorphic attributes than a more general measure of urban density (total imperviousness, TI). We test this for 17 sites in independent watersheds across a gradient of urbanization. We found that EI was a better predictor of all geomorphic variables tested than was TI. Bank instability was positively correlated with EI, while width/depth (a measure of channel incision), bedload sediment depth, and frequency of bars, benches, and large wood were negatively correlated. Large changes in all geomorphic variables were detected at very low levels of EI (< 2-3%). Excess urban stormwater runoff, as represented by EI, drives geomorphic change in urban streams, highlighting the dominant role of the stormwater drainage system in efficiently transferring stormwater runoff from impervious surfaces to the stream, as found for ecological indicators. It is likely that geomorphic condition of streams in urbanizing watersheds, particularly those attributes of ecological relevance, can only be maintained if excess urban stormwater flows are kept out of streams through retention and harvesting. The extent to which EI can be reduced within urban and urbanizing watersheds, through techniques such as distributed stormwater harvesting and infiltration, and the

  6. Omics of the marine medaka (Oryzias melastigma) and its relevance to marine environmental research.

    PubMed

    Kim, Bo-Mi; Kim, Jaebum; Choi, Ik-Young; Raisuddin, Sheikh; Au, Doris W T; Leung, Kenneth M Y; Wu, Rudolf S S; Rhee, Jae-Sung; Lee, Jae-Seong

    2016-02-01

    In recent years, the marine medaka (Oryzias melastigma), also known as the Indian medaka or brackish medaka, has been recognized as a model fish species for ecotoxicology and environmental research in the Asian region. O. melastigma has several promising features for research, which include a short generation period (3-4 months), daily spawning, small size (3-4 cm), transparent embryos, sexual dimorphism, and ease of mass culture in the laboratory. There have been extensive transcriptome and genome studies on the marine medaka in the past decade. Such omics data can be useful in understanding the signal transduction pathways of small teleosts in response to environmental stressors. An omics-integrated approach in the study of the marine medaka is important for strengthening its role as a small fish model for marine environmental studies. In this review, we present current omics information about the marine medaka and discuss its potential applications in the study of various molecular pathways that can be targets of marine environmental stressors, such as chemical pollutants. We believe that this review will encourage the use of this small fish as a model species in marine environmental research. PMID:26716363

  7. The effects of environmental enrichment on depressive- and anxiety-relevant behaviors in socially isolated prairie voles

    PubMed Central

    Grippo, Angela J.; Ihm, Elliott; Wardwell, Joshua; McNeal, Neal; Scotti, Melissa-Ann L.; Moenk, Deirdre A.; Chandler, Danielle L.; LaRocca, Meagan A.; Preihs, Kristin

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Social isolation is associated with depression, anxiety and negative health outcomes. Environmental enrichment, including environmental and cognitive stimulation with inanimate objects and opportunities for physical exercise, may be an effective strategy to include in treatment paradigms for affective disorders as a function of social isolation. In a rodent model – the socially monogamous prairie vole – we investigated the hypothesis that depression- and anxiety-related behaviors following social isolation would be prevented and remediated with environmental enrichment. Methods Experiment 1 investigated the preventive effects of environmental enrichment on negative affective behaviors when administered concurrently with social isolation. Experiment 2 investigated the remediating effects of enrichment on negative affective behaviors when administered following a period of isolation. Behaviors were measured in 3 operational tests: open field; forced swim test; and elevated plus maze. Results In isolated prairie voles, enrichment prevented depression- (immobility in FST, group × housing interaction, P=0.049) and anxiety-relevant behaviors (exploration in open field, group × housing interaction, P=0.036; exploration in elevated plus maze, group × housing interaction, P=0.049). Delayed enrichment also remediated these behaviors in isolated animals (immobility in forced swim test, main effect of housing, P=0.001; exploration in open field, main effect of housing, P=0.047; exploration in elevated plus maze, main effect of housing, P=0.001), and was slightly more effective than physical exercise alone in remediating anxiety-relevant behaviors. Conclusions These findings provide insight into the beneficial effects of an enriched environment on depression- and anxiety-relevant behaviors using a translational rodent model of social isolation. PMID:24804886

  8. Effects of Environmentally Relevant Concentrations of Bisphenol A on the Fathead Minnow

    EPA Science Inventory

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is a wide-spread environmental contaminant of concern due, in part, to possible effects on the vertebrate hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis, including activation of the estrogen receptor (ER). There is a reasonable amount of toxicological information fo...

  9. Environmental issues relevant to the preparation of USAID/Mozambique`s country program strategic plan

    SciTech Connect

    1994-01-01

    The present moment offers a unique opportunity to address Mozambique`s environmental problems, according to this assessment of Mozambique`s natural and environmental resources. Conducted to help USAID/M prepare its Country Program Strategic Plan (CPSP), the assessment covers: (1) the status of Mozambique`s natural resources (soil and land, water, vegetative cover, wildlife/biodiversity and nonrenewable resources), with emphasis on conservation and management of biological diversity and tropical forests; (2) shortcomings in the knowledge and management of these resources; (3) the efforts of other donors and NGOs to address natural resources degradation; and (4) recommendations. According to the report, while all three of the CPSP`s focus areas -- income generation, social services, the democratic governance -- can contribute notably to sustainable use of the environment, the income focus will have the most impact, as families who are struggling to survive often turn to destructive patterns of land use. The report cautions USAID/M not to neglect, in its emphasis on NGOs, the state agencies that will be responsible for guaranteeing security in areas such as land rights. In particular, the Mission should promote the policymaking and enforcement role of the National Commission for the Environment (CNA) and should involve the CNA in Mission environmental assessments. Appendices include a summary of donor environmental activities in Mozambique; a tabulated portrait of Mozambique`s forest resources and forestry sector; and a list of state agencies with responsibilities in Mozambique`s coastal zone.

  10. Developmental exposures to an azole fungicide triadimenol at environmentally relevant concentrations cause reproductive dysfunction in females of medaka fish.

    PubMed

    Chu, Szu-Hung; Liao, Pei-Han; Chen, Pei-Jen

    2016-06-01

    Triadimenol is an effective meatabolite derived from the triazole fungicide triadimenfon. It is an agriculturally important reagent of environmentally emerging concern because of its broad use, persistent occurrence in the environment and greater fungicidal or toxic potency than the parent compound. However, the ecotoxicological impact of triadimenol on fish populations remains unclear. In this study, we investigated developmental toxicity and endocrine disruption effects in medaka fish (Oryzias latipes) exposed at an early life stage to triadimenol. First, mortality, gross development and oxidative stress responses were assessed with triadimenol exposure (3-3000 μg/L) during the embryonic stage. Then, medaka at a sensitive stage of early sexual development underwent 35-day continuous chronic exposure to triadimenol, and the endocrine disruption effects were assessed in adulthood and the next generation. Embryonic exposure to triadimenol did not induce significant teratogenic effects or oxidative stress in embryos or hatchlings. However, early-life exposure to triadimenol under environmentally relevant concentrations (3-30 μg/L) and 300 μg/L persistently altered ovary development and reproduction in female adults and skewed the sex ratio in progeny. As well, triadimenol exposure interrupted the hormone balance, as seen by the expression of genes responsible for estrogen metabolism and egg reproduction. Environmentally relevant triadimenol exposure in medaka fish at early life stages may have ecotoxicological impact in aquatic environments. Along with previous studies, we suggest that conazoles share similar modes of action in disrupting hormone homeostasis and reproduction in fish and mammals. PMID:26971170

  11. Low impact of exposure to environmentally relevant doses of 226Ra in Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) embryonic cells.

    PubMed

    Olsvik, Pål A; Berntssen, Marc H G; Hylland, Ketil; Eriksen, Dag Ø; Holen, Elisabeth

    2012-07-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether (226)Ra, a radionuclide present in produced water from oil platforms in the North Sea and other offshore drilling areas, could affect vulnerable early life stages of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua). Blastula-stage embryonic cells (EC) from fertilized eggs of Atlantic cod were isolated and exposed to environmental relevant concentrations of (226)Ra and transcription of selected genes quantified. The results showed a weak, but significant up-regulation of GPx3 and HSP70 transcripts after 48 h of exposure to 2.11 Bq/L. In EC exposed to three (226)Ra concentrations (2.11, 23 and 117 Bq/L) for 12 h, metallothionein, HSP90AA, thioredoxin and caspase 8 were significantly up-regulated in cells exposed to 117 Bq/L, whereas thioredoxin was also significantly up-regulated in EC exposed to 23 Bq/L. When EC were exposed to the same (226)Ra concentrations for 48 h, only heme oxygenase was significantly up-regulated in the 23 Bq/L exposure group. The results suggest that environmentally relevant activities of (226)Ra may induce oxidative stress and apoptosis in fish ECs. Exposure of Atlantic cod EC to Cd, selected as a model toxicant, supported the ability of EC around blastula stage to respond to toxicants by altered transcription. Due to dilution, environmentally relevant concentrations of radionuclides present in produced water would be expected to pose a minor threat to early life stages of fish. PMID:22388182

  12. Effects of dissolved organic matter (DOM) at environmentally relevant carbon concentrations on atrazine degradation by Chelatobacter heintzii SalB.

    PubMed

    Cheyns, Karlien; Calcoen, Jasper; Martin-Laurent, Fabrice; Bru, David; Smolders, Erik; Springael, Dirk

    2012-09-01

    The dissolved organic matter (DOM) is the term used for organic components of natural origin present in the soil solution and is probably the most available C-source that primes microbial activity in subsoils. Contrasting effects of organic C components on pesticide degradation have been reported; however, most studies have used model organic compounds with compositions and concentrations which differ substantially from those found in the environment. Degradation of atrazine (AT) by Chelatobacter heintzii SalB was monitored in liquid batch assays in the absence or presence of well-defined model C compounds (glucose, gluconate and citrate) as model DOM (mDOM) or complex, less-defined, environmental DOM solutions (eDOM: isolated humic substances, soil and plant residue extracts) at environmentally relevant concentrations. Glucose significantly increased AT degradation rate by more than a factor of 8 at and above 2.5 mg C L( - 1). Optical density measurements showed that this stimulation is related to microbial growth. Gluconate and citrate had no effects unless at non-relevant concentrations (1,000 mg DOC L( - 1)) at which stimulations (gluconate) or inhibitions (citrate) were found. The effects of eDOM added at 10 mg DOC L( - 1) on AT degradation were generally small. The AT degradation time was reduced by factors 1.4-1.9 in the presence of humic acids and eDOM from soils amended with plant residues; however, no effects were found for fulvic acids or eDOM from a soil leachate solution or extracted from unamended peat or forest soil. In conclusion, DOM supplied as both mDOM and eDOM did not inhibit AT degradation at environmentally relevant concentrations, and stimulation can be found for selected DOM samples and this is partly related to its effect on growth. PMID:22159734

  13. A Response to Scott's Concerns about the Relevance of Environmental Education Research: Applying Social-Ecological Systems Thinking and Consilience to Defining Research Goals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Krasny, Marianne E.

    2009-01-01

    In William Scott's plenary address at the World Environmental Education Conference, he expressed concerns about the relevance of environmental education research in a world facing global environmental and demographic change. In responding to Scott's concerns, I argue that addressing challenges related to development and the environment requires…

  14. The formation, transformation, and stability of environmentally relevant uranyl mineral phases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sowder, Andrew Gene

    Characterization of contaminated soils and sediments has identified discrete uranyl minerals as important source terms, controlling the environmental transport and biological uptake of uranium. Fundamental kinetic and thermodynamic data describing the formation, transformation, and stability of uranyl minerals in the environment are incomplete or lacking. This work examines the fate of the uranyl oxide hydrate schoepite (UOL·2H2O) in calcium, phosphate, and silicate bearing systems. Transformation of schoepite to uranyl phosphate phases was rapid and extensive, even at room temperature. The calcium uranyl phosphate autunite (Ca[(UO2)(PO4)]2·xH2O) was the chief alteration product in Ca-PO4 bearing systems. Becquerelite (Ca[(UO2)6O4(OH)6]·8H 2O) was identified as an important metastable weathering product in the presence of calcium and formed in parallel with autunite in certain systems. Uranyl silicates were not observed. Instead, the presence of dissolved silica inhibited the transformation of schoepite to becquerelite. Reaction pathways for the transformation of schoepite to becquerelite and autunite were deduced from structural and topological arguments and from experimental observations. Schoepite transforms to becquerelite via a solid state reaction without dissolution of its sheet structure. In contrast, the formation of autunite requires the complete dissolution of schoepite. Kinetic dissolution studies were conducted to determine the relative impact of four minerals (schoepite, becquerelite, chernikovite, and meta-autunite) on the environmental availability of uranium. Significant variations were observed in the rate and extent of dissolution among the mineral-treatment combinations examined. The uranyl phosphates, chernikovite and meta-autunite, proved to be far more resistant to dissolution than the uranyl oxide hydrates, schoepite and becquerelite. Exceptions to this rule, however, indicate the importance of specific mineral dissolution kinetics in

  15. Inter-Neighborhood Migration, Race, and Environmental Hazards: Modeling Micro-Level Processes of Environmental Inequality

    PubMed Central

    Crowder, Kyle; Downey, Liam

    2009-01-01

    This study combines data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics with neighborhood-level industrial hazard data from the Environmental Protection Agency to examine the extent and sources of environmental inequality at the individual level. Results indicate that profound racial and ethnic differences in proximity to industrial pollution persist when differences in individual education, household income, and other micro-level characteristics are controlled. Examination of underlying migration patterns further reveals that black and Latino householders move into neighborhoods with significantly higher hazard levels than do comparable whites, and that racial differences in proximity to neighborhood pollution are maintained more by these disparate mobility destinations than by differential effects of pollution on the decision to move. PMID:20503918

  16. Applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARs) for remedial actions at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant: A compendium of environmental laws and guidance. Environmental Restoration Program

    SciTech Connect

    Etnier, E.L.; Eaton, L.A.

    1992-03-01

    Section 121 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) of 1980 specifies that remedial actions for cleanup of hazardous substances found at sites placed on the National Priorities List (NPL) by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must comply with applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARs) or standards under federal and state environmental laws. To date, the US Department of Energy (DOE) Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP) has not been on the NPL. Although DOE and EPA have entered into an Administrative Consent Order (ACO), the prime regulatory authority for cleanup at PGDP will be the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This report supplies a preliminary list of available federal and state ARARs that might be considered for remedial response at PGDP in the event that the plant becomes included on the NPL or the ACO is modified to include CERCLA cleanup. A description of the terms ``applicable`` and ``relevant and appropriate`` is provided, as well as definitions of chemical-, location-, and action-specific ARARS. ARARs promulgated by the federal government and by the state of Kentucky are listed in tables. In addition, the major provisions of RCRA, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and other acts, as they apply to hazardous and radioactive waste cleanup, are discussed.

  17. Eyes as gateways for environmental light to the substantia nigra: relevance in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Romeo, Stefania; Di Camillo, Daniela; Splendiani, Alessandra; Capannolo, Marta; Rocchi, Cristina; Aloisi, Gabriella; Fasciani, Irene; Corsini, Giovanni U; Scarnati, Eugenio; Lozzi, Luca; Maggio, Roberto

    2014-01-01

    Recent data indicates that prolonged bright light exposure of rats induces production of neuromelanin and reduction of tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons in the substantia nigra. This effect was the result of direct light reaching the substantia nigra and not due to alteration of circadian rhythms. Here, we measured the spectrum of light reaching the substantia nigra in rats and analysed the pathway that light may take to reach this deep brain structure in humans. Wavelength range and light intensity, emitted from a fluorescent tube, were measured, using a stereotaxically implanted optical fibre in the rat mesencephalon. The hypothetical path of environmental light from the eye to the substantia nigra in humans was investigated by computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging. Light with wavelengths greater than 600 nm reached the rat substantia nigra, with a peak at 709 nm. Eyes appear to be the gateway for light to the mesencephalon since covering the eyes with aluminum foil reduced light intensity by half. Using computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging of a human head, we identified the eye and the superior orbital fissure as possible gateways for environmental light to reach the mesencephalon. PMID:24578627

  18. Using Magnetically Responsive Tea Waste to Remove Lead in Waters under Environmentally Relevant Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Yeo, Siang Yee; Choi, Siwon; Dien, Vivian; Sow-Peh, Yoke Keow; Qi, Genggeng; Hatton, T. Alan; Doyle, Patrick S.; Thio, Beng Joo Reginald

    2013-01-01

    We report the use of a simple yet highly effective magnetite-waste tea composite to remove lead(II) (Pb2+) ions from water. Magnetite-waste tea composites were dispersed in four different types of water–deionized (DI), artificial rainwater, artificial groundwater and artificial freshwater–that mimic actual environmental conditions. The water samples had varying initial concentrations (0.16–5.55 ppm) of Pb2+ ions and were mixed with the magnetite-waste tea composite for at least 24 hours to allow adsorption of the Pb2+ ions to reach equilibrium. The magnetite-waste tea composites were stable in all the water samples for at least 3 months and could be easily removed from the aqueous media via the use of permanent magnets. We detected no significant leaching of iron (Fe) ions into the water from the magnetite-waste tea composites. The percentage of Pb adsorbed onto the magnetite-waste tea composite ranged from ∼70% to 100%; the composites were as effective as activated carbon (AC) in removing the Pb2+ ions from water, depending on the initial Pb concentration. Our prepared magnetite-waste tea composites show promise as a green, inexpensive and highly effective sorbent for removal of Pb in water under environmentally realistic conditions. PMID:23818955

  19. Environmental and Genetic Contributors to Salivary Testosterone Levels in Infants

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Kai; Yu, Yang; Ahn, Mihye; Zhu, Hongtu; Zou, Fei; Gilmore, John H.; Knickmeyer, Rebecca C.

    2014-01-01

    Transient activation of the hypothalamic–pituitary–gonadal axis in early infancy plays an important role in male genital development and sexual differentiation of the brain, but factors contributing to individual variation in testosterone levels during this period are poorly understood. We measured salivary testosterone levels in 222 infants (119 males, 103 females, 108 singletons, 114 twins) between 2.70 and 4.80 months of age. We tested 16 major demographic and medical history variables for effects on inter-individual variation in salivary testosterone. Using the subset of twins, we estimated genetic and environmental contributions to salivary testosterone levels. Finally, we tested single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within ±5 kb of genes involved in testosterone synthesis, transport, signaling, and metabolism for associations with salivary testosterone using univariate tests and random forest (RF) analysis. We report an association between 5 min APGAR scores and salivary testosterone levels in males. Twin modeling indicated that individual variability in testosterone levels was primarily explained by environmental factors. Regarding genetic variation, univariate tests did not reveal any variants significantly associated with salivary testosterone after adjusting for false discovery rate. The top hit in males was rs10923844, an SNP of unknown function located downstream of HSD3B1 and HSD3B2. The top hits in females were two SNPs located upstream of ESR1 (rs3407085 and rs2295190). RF analysis, which reflects joint and conditional effects of multiple variants, indicated that genes involved in regulation of reproductive function, particularly LHCGR, are related to salivary testosterone levels in male infants, as are genes involved in cholesterol production, transport, and removal, while genes involved in estrogen signaling are related to salivary testosterone levels in female infants. PMID:25400620

  20. Environmental tobacco smoke and canine urinary cotinine level

    SciTech Connect

    Bertone-Johnson, Elizabeth R. Procter-Gray, Elizabeth; Gollenberg, Audra L.; Ryan, Michele B.; Barber, Lisa G.

    2008-03-15

    Epidemiologic studies of companion animals such as dogs have been established as models for the relationship between exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) and cancer risk in humans. While results from these studies are provocative, pet owner report of a dog's ETS exposure has not yet been validated. We have evaluated the relationship between dog owner's report of household smoking by questionnaire and dog's urinary cotinine level. Between January and October 2005, dog owners presenting their pet for non-emergency veterinary care at the Foster Hospital for Small Animals at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, Tufts University, were asked to complete a 10-page questionnaire measuring exposure to household ETS in the previous 24 h and other factors. A free-catch urine sample was also collected from dogs. Urinary cotinine level was assayed for 63 dogs, including 30 whose owners reported household smoking and 33 unexposed dogs matched on age and month of enrollment. Urinary cotinine level was significantly higher in dogs exposed to household smoking in the 24 h before urine collection compared to unexposed dogs (14.6 ng/ml vs. 7.4 ng/ml; P=0.02). After adjustment for other factors, cotinine level increased linearly with number of cigarettes smoked by all household members (P=0.004). Other canine characteristics including age, body composition and nose length were also associated with cotinine level. Findings from our study suggest that household smoking levels as assessed by questionnaire are significantly associated with canine cotinine levels.

  1. Burial Level Change Defines a High Energetic Relevance for Protein Binding Interfaces.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhenhua; He, Ying; Wong, Limsoon; Li, Jinyan

    2015-01-01

    Protein-protein interfaces defined through atomic contact or solvent accessibility change are widely adopted in structural biology studies. But, these definitions cannot precisely capture energetically important regions at protein interfaces. The burial depth of an atom in a protein is related to the atom's energy. This work investigates how closely the change in burial level of an atom/residue upon complexation is related to the binding. Burial level change is different from burial level itself. An atom deeply buried in a monomer with a high burial level may not change its burial level after an interaction and it may have little burial level change. We hypothesize that an interface is a region of residues all undergoing burial level changes after interaction. By this definition, an interface can be decomposed into an onion-like structure according to the burial level change extent. We found that our defined interfaces cover energetically important residues more precisely, and that the binding free energy of an interface is distributed progressively from the outermost layer to the core. These observations are used to predict binding hot spots. Our approach's F-measure performance on a benchmark dataset of alanine mutagenesis residues is much superior or similar to those by complicated energy modeling or machine learning approaches. PMID:26357227

  2. Relevance of Crop Biology for Environmental Risk Assessment of Genetically Modified Crops in Africa.

    PubMed

    Akinbo, Olalekan; Hancock, James F; Makinde, Diran

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the crop biology of economic crops in Africa is needed for regulators to accurately review dossiers and conduct comprehensive environmental risk assessments (ERAs). This information allows regulators to decide whether biotech crops present a risk to biodiversity, since crossing between domesticated crops and their wild relatives could affect the adaptations of the wild species. The criteria that should be used in the evaluation of African crops for ERA include growth habit, center of origin, center of genetic diversity, proximity of wild relatives, inter-fertility, mode of pollen dispersal, length of pollen viability, mating system, invasiveness, weediness, mode of propagation, mode of seed dispersal, and length of seed dormancy. In this paper, we discuss the crops being genetic engineered in Africa and describe the crop biology of those with native relatives. PMID:26501055

  3. Supramolecular chemistry of selective anion recognition for anions of environmental relevance. 1998 annual progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Bowman-James, K.; Wilson, G.S.; Kuczera, K.; Moyer, B.

    1998-06-01

    'This project has as its focus the design and synthesis of polyammonium macrocyclic receptors for oxoanions of environmental importance. The basic research aspects of this project involve: (1) synthesis (and the search for improved synthetic methods); (2) solid state structure determination and thermodynamics studies (to ascertain structural criteria for and strength of anion binding); and (3) molecular dynamics simulations (to assess solution characteristics of the interactions between anions and their receptors). Applications-oriented goals include the fabrication of more selective anion-selective electrodes and the use of these compounds in liquid-liquid separations. The latter goal comprises the subcontract with Dr. Bruce Moyer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. This report summarizes work after 1 year and 7 months of a 3-year project. To date, the authors have focussed on the design and synthesis of selective receptors for nitrate and phosphate.'

  4. Relevance of Crop Biology for Environmental Risk Assessment of Genetically Modified Crops in Africa

    PubMed Central

    Akinbo, Olalekan; Hancock, James F.; Makinde, Diran

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge about the crop biology of economic crops in Africa is needed for regulators to accurately review dossiers and conduct comprehensive environmental risk assessments (ERAs). This information allows regulators to decide whether biotech crops present a risk to biodiversity, since crossing between domesticated crops and their wild relatives could affect the adaptations of the wild species. The criteria that should be used in the evaluation of African crops for ERA include growth habit, center of origin, center of genetic diversity, proximity of wild relatives, inter-fertility, mode of pollen dispersal, length of pollen viability, mating system, invasiveness, weediness, mode of propagation, mode of seed dispersal, and length of seed dormancy. In this paper, we discuss the crops being genetic engineered in Africa and describe the crop biology of those with native relatives. PMID:26501055

  5. Phytoaccumulation of antimicrobials from biosolids: impacts on environmental fate and relevance to human exposure.

    PubMed

    Aryal, Niroj; Reinhold, Dawn M

    2011-11-01

    Triclocarban and triclosan, two antimicrobials widely used in consumer products, can adversely affect ecosystems and potentially impact human health. The application of biosolids to agricultural fields introduces triclocarban and triclosan to soil and water resources. This research examined the phytoaccumulation of antimicrobials, effects of plant growth on migration of antimicrobials to water resources, and relevance of phytoaccumulation in human exposure to antimicrobials. Pumpkin, zucchini, and switch grass were grown in soil columns to which biosolids were applied. Leachate from soil columns was assessed every other week for triclocarban and triclosan. At the end of the trial, concentrations of triclocarban and triclosan were determined for soil, roots, stems, and leaves. Results indicated that plants can reduce leaching of antimicrobials to water resources. Pumpkin and zucchini growth significantly reduced soil concentrations of triclosan to less than 0.001 mg/kg, while zucchini significantly reduced soil concentrations of triclocarban to 0.04 mg/kg. Pumpkin, zucchini, and switch grass accumulated triclocarban and triclosan in mg per kg (dry) concentrations. Potential human exposure to triclocarban from consumption of pumpkin or zucchini was substantially less than exposure from product use, but was greater than exposure from drinking water consumption. Consequently, research indicated that pumpkin and zucchini may beneficially impact the fate of antimicrobials in agricultural fields, while presenting minimal acute risk to human health. PMID:21903237

  6. Environmental correction factors for predicting room sound pressure levels

    SciTech Connect

    Warnock, A.C.C.

    1998-10-01

    ARI Standard 885 provides a method for calculating sound pressure levels in room below plenums containing air-handling devices. An important step in the calculation is the correction of the sound power for the device from values provided by the manufacturer to values appropriate for use in occupied spaces. This correction is called the environmental adjustment factor. It compensates for the fact that sound power measured for a source placed outdoors or in a hemi-free field has been found to be greater at low frequencies than the sound power measured for the same source in a reverberation room. When making predictions of sound pressure level in a room using such sound power levels, one has to estimate the reduction in sound power caused by the room. Estimated reductions provided in ARI 885 were examined during ASHRAE research project RP-755 and found to be too large. Lower values are suggested in this paper.

  7. Isotopically modified silver nanoparticles to assess nanosilver bioavailability and toxicity at environmentally relevant exposures

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Croteau, Marie-Noële; Dybowska, Agnieszka D.; Luoma, Samuel N.; Misra, Superb K.; Valsami-Jones, Eugenia

    2014-01-01

    A major challenge in understanding the environmental implications of nanotechnology lies in studying nanoparticle uptake in organisms at environmentally realistic exposure concentrations. Typically, high exposure concentrations are needed to trigger measurable effects and to detect accumulation above background. But application of tracer techniques can overcome these limitations. Here we synthesised, for the first time, citrate-coated Ag nanoparticles using Ag that was 99.7 % 109Ag. In addition to conducting reactivity and dissolution studies, we assessed the bioavailability and toxicity of these isotopically modified Ag nanoparticles (109Ag NPs) to a freshwater snail under conditions typical of nature. We showed that accumulation of 109Ag from 109Ag NPs is detectable in the tissues of Lymnaea stagnalis after 24-h exposure to aqueous concentrations as low as 6 ng L–1 as well as after 3 h of dietary exposure to concentrations as low as 0.07 μg g–1. Silver uptake from unlabelled Ag NPs would not have been detected under similar exposure conditions. Uptake rates of 109Ag from 109Ag NPs mixed with food or dispersed in water were largely linear over a wide range of concentrations. Particle dissolution was most important at low waterborne concentrations. We estimated that 70 % of the bioaccumulated 109Ag concentration in L. stagnalis at exposures –1 originated from the newly solubilised Ag. Above this concentration, we predicted that 80 % of the bioaccumulated 109Ag concentration originated from the 109Ag NPs. It was not clear if agglomeration had a major influence on uptake rates.

  8. Environmental monitoring of low-level radioactive waste disposal facility

    SciTech Connect

    Shum, E.Y.; Starmer, R.J.; Young, M.H.

    1989-12-01

    This branch technical position (BTP) paper on the environmental monitoring program for a low-level radioactive waste disposal facility provides general guidance on what is required by Section 61.53 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) of applicants submitting a license application for such a facility. In general, the environmental monitoring program consists of three phases: preoperational, operational, and postoperational. Each phase of the monitoring program should be designed to fulfill the specific objectives defined in the BTP paper. During the preoperational phase, the objectives of the program are to provide site characterization information, to demonstrate site suitability and acceptability, to obtain background or baseline information, and to provide a record for public information. During the operational phase, the emphasis on measurement shifts. Monitoring data are obtained to provide early warning of releases and to document compliance with regulations, the dose limits of 10 CFR Part 61, or applicable standards of the US Environmental Protection Agency. Data are also used to update important pathway parameters to improve predictions of site performance and to provide a record of performance for public information. The postoperational environmental monitoring program emphasizes measurements to demonstrate compliance with the site-closure requirements and continued compliance with the performance objective in regard to the release of radionuclides to the environment. The data are used to support evaluation of long-term effects on the general public and for public information. Guidance is also provided in the BTP paper on the choice of which constituents to measure, setting action levels, relating measurements to appropriate actions in a corrective action plan, and quality assurance.

  9. The Ivory Tower and the Community: A New Approach to Emphasizing the Relevance of Environmental Science Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuff, K. E.; Corazza, L.

    2006-12-01

    Over the past eight years we have developed and implemented several U.C. Berkeley-based outreach programs that provide opportunities for grades nine through eleven students in the East San Francisco Bay Area to gain skills and understandings that increase their capacity to enroll and perform successfully in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses in the future, which enhances their capacity to decide to pursue STEM careers. A common element of these programs is the opportunity they provide participants to engage in environmental science research projects that are directly linked to relevant, real-world environmental problems and issues facing their communities. Analysis of evidence gleaned from questionnaires, interviews and specific assessment instruments indicates that these programs have consistently achieved a high degree of success in that they have: significantly increased participants' understanding of the process and nature of science; enhanced their intellectual self-confidence with regard to STEM; developed deeper appreciation of how scientific research can contribute to the maintenance of healthy local environments; developed a greater interest in participating in STEM-related courses of study and after school programs; and improved attitudes toward STEM. These results corroborate recent research studies that indicate a close relationship between educational activities that promote the perception of STEM as being relevant and the ability to foster development of deeper conceptual understandings among teens. Moreover, they support the notion that providing opportunities for students to develop personal connections with particular issues discussed, and real-world STEM experiences that make STEM more relevant and interesting can help to bring about changes in attitude, which is a key component in improving STEM learning and understanding particularly among urban youth. Overall, our work suggests that in order for a given STEM

  10. Applicable or Relevant and Appropriate Requirements (ARARs) for Remedial Action at the Oak Ridge Reservation: A compendium of major environmental laws. Environmental Restoration Program

    SciTech Connect

    Etnier, E.L.; McDonald, E.P.; Houlberg, L.M.

    1993-07-01

    Section 121 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) of 1980 specifies that remedial actions for cleanup of hazardous substances must comply with applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARS) or standards under federal and state environmental laws. The US Department of Energy (DOE) Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) was placed on the National Priorities List by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on November 21, 1989, effective December 21, 1989. As a result of this listing, DOE, EPA, and the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation have signed a Federal Facility Agreement (FFA) for the environmental restoration of the ORR. Section XXI(F) of the FFA calls for the preparation of a draft listing of all ARARs as mandated by CERCLA {section}121. This report supplies a preliminary list of available federal and state ARARs that might be considered for remedial response at the ORR. A description of the terms ``applicable`` and ``relevant and appropriate`` is provided, as well as definitions of chemical-, location-, and action-specific ARARS. ARARs promulgated by the federal government and by the state of Tennessee are listed in tables. In addition, the major provisions of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air and other acts, as they apply to hazardous waste cleanup, are discussed. In the absence of ARARS, CERCLA {section}121 provides for the use of nonpromulgated federal criteria, guidelines, and advisories in evaluating the human risk associated with remedial action alternatives. Such nonpromulgated standards are classified as ``to-be-considered`` (TBC) guidance. A ion of available guidance is given; summary tables fist the available federal standards and guidance information. In addition, the substantive contents of the DOE orders as they apply to remediation of radioactively contaminated sites are discussed as TBC guidance.

  11. Mars-Relevant Environmental Conditions at the Lakes of Licancabur Volcano, Bolivia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hock, A. N.; Cabrol, N. A.; Grin, E. A.; Kovacs, G. T; Rothschild, L. J.; Parazynski, S. E.; Prufert-Bebout, L.

    2005-12-01

    In the Bolivian Altiplano, a number of environmental variables combine to produce some of the most exotic and poorly understood lacustrine environments on Earth. In a cold, arid environment with extreme ultraviolet flux, these lakes provide a habitat for biology and a proxy for the study of potentially analogous martian environments. Here, we present new data on the physical, chemical environment of three such lakes at Licancabur Volcano, Bolivia and explore the quantitative basis for an analogy to Mars. Licancabur (22°50`'S, 67°53`'W) is a large, dormant volcano on the western edge of the Bolivian Altiplano at the border with Chile. Two hypersaline lakes, Laguna Blanca and Laguna Verde, are located at the volcano`'s 4300 m base. Within the past thirty years, these two were connected as a single reservoir, but local climate-driven evaporation (precipitation <100 mm/y, evaporation >1000 mm/y) has resulted in two topographically and chemically distinct bodies connected by a small stream. At nearly 6000 m, the small crater lake of Licancabur is one of the highest known and least explored on Earth. While sub-freezing average air temperature and extreme ultraviolet flux create an environment similar to the surface of Mars, the lake harbors a small biological community and is ice-covered only part of the year.

  12. Features of Microglia and Neuroinflammation Relevant to Environmental Exposure and Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Kraft, Andrew D.; Harry, G. Jean

    2011-01-01

    Microglia are resident cells of the brain involved in regulatory processes critical for development, maintenance of the neural environment, injury and repair. They belong to the monocytic-macrophage lineage and serve as brain immune cells to orchestrate innate immune responses; however, they are distinct from other tissue macrophages due to their relatively quiescent phenotype and tight regulation by the CNS microenvironment. Microglia actively survey the surrounding parenchyma and respond rapidly to changes such that any disruption to neural architecture or function can contribute to the loss in regulation of the microglia phenotype. In many models of neurodegeneration and neurotoxicity, early events of synaptic degeneration and neuronal loss are accompanied by an inflammatory response including activation of microglia, perivascular monocytes, and recruitment of leukocytes. In culture, microglia have been shown to be capable of releasing several potentially cytotoxic substances, such as reactive oxygen intermediates, nitric oxide, proteases, arachidonic acid derivatives, excitatory amino acids, and cytokines; however, they also produce various neurotrophic factors and quench damage from free radicals and excitotoxins. As the primary source for pro-inflammatory cytokines, microglia are implicated as pivotal mediators of neuroinflammation and can induce or modulate a broad spectrum of cellular responses. Neuroinflammation should be considered as a balanced network of processes whereby subtle modifications can shift the cells toward disparate outcomes. For any evaluation of neuroinflammation and microglial responses, within the framework of neurotoxicity or degeneration, one key question in determining the consequence of neuroinflammation is whether the response is an initiating event or the consequence of tissue damage. As examples of environmental exposure-related neuroinflammation in the literature, we provide an evaluation of data on manganese and diesel exhaust

  13. Selective uptake and biological consequences of environmentally relevant antidepressant pharmaceutical exposures on male fathead minnows

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schultz, M.M.; Painter, M.M.; Bartell, S.E.; Logue, A.; Furlong, E.T.; Werner, S.L.; Schoenfuss, H.L.

    2011-01-01

    Antidepressant pharmaceuticals have been reported in wastewater effluent at the nanogram to low microgram-per-liter range, and include bupropion (BUP), fluoxetine (FLX), sertraline (SER), and venlafaxine (VEN). To assess the effects of antidepressants on reproductive anatomy, physiology, and behavior, adult male fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) were exposed for 21 days either to a single concentration of the antidepressants FLX, SER, VEN, or BUP, or to an antidepressant mixture. The data demonstrated that exposure to VEN (305. ng/L and 1104. ng/L) and SER (5.2. ng/L) resulted in mortality. Anatomical alterations were noted within the testes of fish exposed to SER and FLX, both modulators of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Additionally, FLX at 28. ng/L induced vitellogenin in male fish-a common endpoint for estrogenic endocrine disruption. Significant alterations in male secondary sex characteristics were noted with single exposures. Effects of single compound exposures neither carried over, nor became additive in the antidepressant mixtures, and reproductive behavior was not affected. Analysis of brain tissues from the exposed fish suggested increased uptake of FLX, SER and BUP and minimal uptake of VEN when compared to exposure water concentrations. Furthermore, the only metabolite detected consistently in the brain tissues was norfluoxetine. Similar trends of uptake by brain tissue were observed when fish were exposed to antidepressant mixtures. The present study demonstrates that anatomy and physiology, but not reproductive behavior, can be disrupted by exposure to environmental concentrations of some antidepressants. The observation that antidepressant uptake into fish tissues is selective may have consequences on assessing the mode-of-action and effects of these compounds in future studies. ?? 2011 Elsevier B.V.

  14. Selective uptake and biological consequences of environmentally relevant antidepressant pharmaceutical exposures on male fathead minnows

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schultz, Melissa M.; Painter, Meghan M.; Bartell, Stephen E.; Logue, Amanda; Furlong, Edward T.; Werner, Stephen L.; Schoenfuss, Heiko L.

    2011-01-01

    Antidepressant pharmaceuticals have been reported in wastewater effluent at the nanogram to low microgram-per-liter range, and include bupropion (BUP), fluoxetine (FLX), sertraline (SER), and venlafaxine (VEN). To assess the effects of antidepressants on reproductive anatomy, physiology, and behavior, adult male fathead minnows (Pimeplwles promelas) were exposed for 21 days either to a single concentration of the antidepressants FLX, SER, VEN, or BUP, or to an antidepressant mixture. The data demonstrated that exposure to VEN (305 ng/L and 1104 ng/L) and SER (5.2 ng/L) resulted in mortality. Anatomical alterations were noted within the testes of fish exposed to SER and FLX, both modulators of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Additionally, FLX at 28 ng/L induced vitellogenin in male fish—a common endpoint for estrogenic endocrine disruption. Significant alterations in male secondary sex characteristics were noted with single exposures. Effects of single compound exposures neither carried over, nor became additive in the antidepressant mixtures, and reproductive behavior was not affected. Analysis of brain tissues from the exposed fish suggested increased uptake of FLX, SER and BUP and minimal uptake of VEN when compared to exposure water concentrations. Furthermore, the only metabolite detected consistently in the brain tissues was norfluoxetine. Similar trends of uptake by brain tissue were observed when fish were exposed to antidepressant mixtures. The present study demonstrates that anatomy and physiology, but not reproductive behavior, can be disrupted by exposure to environmental concentrations of some antidepressants. The observation that antidepressant uptake into fish tissues is selective may have consequences on assessing the mode-of-action and effects of these compounds in future studies.

  15. Selective uptake and biological consequences of environmentally relevant antidepressant pharmaceutical exposures on male fathead minnows.

    PubMed

    Schultz, Melissa M; Painter, Meghan M; Bartell, Stephen E; Logue, Amanda; Furlong, Edward T; Werner, Stephen L; Schoenfuss, Heiko L

    2011-07-01

    Antidepressant pharmaceuticals have been reported in wastewater effluent at the nanogram to low microgram-per-liter range, and include bupropion (BUP), fluoxetine (FLX), sertraline (SER), and venlafaxine (VEN). To assess the effects of antidepressants on reproductive anatomy, physiology, and behavior, adult male fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) were exposed for 21 days either to a single concentration of the antidepressants FLX, SER, VEN, or BUP, or to an antidepressant mixture. The data demonstrated that exposure to VEN (305 ng/L and 1104 ng/L) and SER (5.2 ng/L) resulted in mortality. Anatomical alterations were noted within the testes of fish exposed to SER and FLX, both modulators of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Additionally, FLX at 28 ng/L induced vitellogenin in male fish--a common endpoint for estrogenic endocrine disruption. Significant alterations in male secondary sex characteristics were noted with single exposures. Effects of single compound exposures neither carried over, nor became additive in the antidepressant mixtures, and reproductive behavior was not affected. Analysis of brain tissues from the exposed fish suggested increased uptake of FLX, SER and BUP and minimal uptake of VEN when compared to exposure water concentrations. Furthermore, the only metabolite detected consistently in the brain tissues was norfluoxetine. Similar trends of uptake by brain tissue were observed when fish were exposed to antidepressant mixtures. The present study demonstrates that anatomy and physiology, but not reproductive behavior, can be disrupted by exposure to environmental concentrations of some antidepressants. The observation that antidepressant uptake into fish tissues is selective may have consequences on assessing the mode-of-action and effects of these compounds in future studies. PMID:21536011

  16. Enrofloxacin at environmentally relevant concentrations enhances uptake and toxicity of cadmium in the earthworm Eisenia fetida in farm soils.

    PubMed

    Li, Yinsheng; Tang, Hao; Hu, Yingxiu; Wang, Xiuhong; Ai, Xiaojie; Tang, Li; Matthew, Cory; Cavanagh, Jo; Qiu, Jiangping

    2016-05-01

    Individual and combined effects of enrofloxacin (EF) and cadmium (Cd) on the earthworm Eisenia fetida at environmentally relevant concentrations were investigated. EF is a veterinary antibiotic; Cd is an impurity in phosphatic fertiliser. For both, residues may accumulate in farm soils. In laboratory tests, over 98% of spiked EF was adsorbed by farm soils, with a half-life >8 weeks. However, earthworms absorbed less than 20% of spiked EF. Earthworms in soil with EF concentration 10 mg kg(-1) soil experienced transient oxidative stress and exhibited reduced burrowing activity and respiration after an 8-week exposure; EF at 0.1 and 1.0 mg kg(-1) soil did not elicit toxicity symptoms. When both were added, Cd did not affect EF uptake, but each increment of spiked EF increased Cd bioaccumulation and associated oxidative stress of earthworms, and also caused decreased burrow length and CO2 production. However, metallothionein induction was not affected. The enhanced toxicity of Cd to earthworms in the presence of EF at low environmental concentrations may have implications for the health and reproductive success of earthworm populations and highlights the importance of understanding effects of antibiotic contamination of farm soils, and of awareness of environmental effects from interaction between multiple contaminants. PMID:26852206

  17. Relevance of Education and Intelligence at the National Level for the Economic Welfare of People

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rindermann, Heiner

    2008-01-01

    Cognitive abilities are important for the economic and non-economic success of individuals and societies. For international analyses, the collection of IQ-measures from Lynn and Vanhanen was supplemented and meliorated by data from international student assessment studies (IEA-Reading, TIMSS, PISA, PIRLS). The cognitive level of a nation is highly…

  18. An Analysis of the Knowledge Levels of Media Directors Concerning Relevant Copyright Issues in Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chase, Mark E.

    This study analyzes the copyright knowledge levels of media directors of selected higher education institutions. A questionnaire was mailed to 466 media professionals at higher educational institutions who were members of the Division of Educational Media Management in the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT). The…

  19. Quantitative analysis of receptor tyrosine kinase-effector coupling at functionally relevant stimulus levels.

    PubMed

    Li, Simin; Bhave, Devayani; Chow, Jennifer M; Riera, Thomas V; Schlee, Sandra; Rauch, Simone; Atanasova, Mariya; Cate, Richard L; Whitty, Adrian

    2015-04-17

    A major goal of current signaling research is to develop a quantitative understanding of how receptor activation is coupled to downstream signaling events and to functional cellular responses. Here, we measure how activation of the RET receptor tyrosine kinase on mouse neuroblastoma cells by the neurotrophin artemin (ART) is quantitatively coupled to key downstream effectors. We show that the efficiency of RET coupling to ERK and Akt depends strongly on ART concentration, and it is highest at the low (∼100 pM) ART levels required for neurite outgrowth. Quantitative discrimination between ERK and Akt pathway signaling similarly is highest at this low ART concentration. Stimulation of the cells with 100 pM ART activated RET at the rate of ∼10 molecules/cell/min, leading at 5-10 min to a transient peak of ∼150 phospho-ERK (pERK) molecules and ∼50 pAkt molecules per pRET, after which time the levels of these two signaling effectors fell by 25-50% while the pRET levels continued to slowly rise. Kinetic experiments showed that signaling effectors in different pathways respond to RET activation with different lag times, such that the balance of signal flux among the different pathways evolves over time. Our results illustrate that measurements using high, super-physiological growth factor levels can be misleading about quantitative features of receptor signaling. We propose a quantitative model describing how receptor-effector coupling efficiency links signal amplification to signal sensitization between receptor and effector, thereby providing insight into design principles underlying how receptors and their associated signaling machinery decode an extracellular signal to trigger a functional cellular outcome. PMID:25635057

  20. Phage infection of an environmentally relevant marine bacterium alters host metabolism and lysate composition

    PubMed Central

    Ankrah, Nana Yaw D; May, Amanda L; Middleton, Jesse L; Jones, Daniel R; Hadden, Mary K; Gooding, Jessica R; LeCleir, Gary R; Wilhelm, Steven W; Campagna, Shawn R; Buchan, Alison

    2014-01-01

    Viruses contribute to the mortality of marine microbes, consequentially altering biological species composition and system biogeochemistry. Although it is well established that host cells provide metabolic resources for virus replication, the extent to which infection reshapes host metabolism at a global level and the effect of this alteration on the cellular material released following viral lysis is less understood. To address this knowledge gap, the growth dynamics, metabolism and extracellular lysate of roseophage-infected Sulfitobacter sp. 2047 was studied using a variety of techniques, including liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS)-based metabolomics. Quantitative estimates of the total amount of carbon and nitrogen sequestered into particulate biomass indicate that phage infection redirects ∼75% of nutrients into virions. Intracellular concentrations for 82 metabolites were measured at seven time points over the infection cycle. By the end of this period, 71% of the detected metabolites were significantly elevated in infected populations, and stable isotope-based flux measurements showed that these cells had elevated metabolic activity. In contrast to simple hypothetical models that assume that extracellular compounds increase because of lysis, a profile of metabolites from infected cultures showed that >70% of the 56 quantified compounds had decreased concentrations in the lysate relative to uninfected controls, suggesting that these small, labile nutrients were being utilized by surviving cells. These results indicate that virus-infected cells are physiologically distinct from their uninfected counterparts, which has implications for microbial community ecology and biogeochemistry. PMID:24304672

  1. Evaluating the Relevance, Reliability, and Applicability of CMIP5 Climate Projections for Water Resources and Environmental Planning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brekke, L. D.; Scott, J.; Ferguson, I. M.; Arnold, J.; Raff, D. A.; Webb, R. S.

    2012-12-01

    Water managers need to understand the applicability of climate projection information available for decision-support at the scale of their applications. Applicability depends on information reliability and relevance. This need to understand applicability stems from expectations that entities rationalize adaptation investments or decisions to delay investment. It is also occurring at a time when new global climate projections are being released through the World Climate Research Programme Coupled Model Intercomparison Project phase 5 (CMIP5), which introduces new information opportunities and interpretation challenges. This project involves an interagency collaboration to evaluate the applicability of CMIP5 projections for use in water and environmental resources planning. The overarching goal is to develop and demonstrate a framework that involves dual evaluations of relevance and reliability informing an ultimate discussion and judgment of applicability, which is expected to vary with decision-making context. The framework is being developed and demonstrated within the context of reservoir systems management in California's Sacramento and San Joaquin River basins. The relevance evaluation focuses on identifying the climate variables and statistical measures relevant to long-term management questions, which may depend on satisfying multiple objectives. Past studies' results are being considered in this evaluation, along with new results from system sensitivity analyses conducted through this effort. The reliability evaluation focuses on the CMIP5 climate models' ability to simulate past conditions relative to observed references. The evaluation is being conducted across the global domain using a large menu of climate variables and statistical measures, leveraging lessons learned from similar evaluations of CMIP3 climate models. The global focus addresses a broader project goal of producing a web resource that can serve reliability information to applicability

  2. Environmental performances of Sardinian dairy sheep production systems at different input levels.

    PubMed

    Vagnoni, E; Franca, A; Breedveld, L; Porqueddu, C; Ferrara, R; Duce, P

    2015-01-01

    Although sheep milk production is a significant sector for the European Mediterranean countries, it shows serious competitiveness gaps. Minimizing the ecological impacts of dairy sheep farming systems could represent a key factor for farmers to bridging the gaps in competitiveness of such systems and also obtaining public incentives. However, scarce is the knowledge about the environmental performance of Mediterranean dairy sheep farms. The main objectives of this paper were (i) to compare the environmental impacts of sheep milk production from three dairy farms in Sardinia (Italy), characterized by different input levels, and (ii) to identify the hotspots for improving the environmental performances of each farm, by using a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) approach. The LCA was conducted using two different assessment methods: Carbon Footprint-IPCC and ReCiPe end-point. The analysis, conducted "from cradle to gate", was based on the functional unit 1 kg of Fat and Protein Corrected Milk (FPCM). The observed trends of the environmental performances of the studied farming systems were similar for both evaluation methods. The GHG emissions revealed a little range of variation (from 2.0 to 2.3 kg CO2-eq per kg of FPCM) with differences between farming systems being not significant. The ReCiPe end-point analysis showed a larger range of values and environmental performances of the low-input farm were significantly different compared to the medium- and high-input farms. In general, enteric methane emissions, field operations, electricity and production of agricultural machineries were the most relevant processes in determining the overall environmental performances of farms. Future research will be dedicated to (i) explore and better define the environmental implications of the land use impact category in the Mediterranean sheep farming systems, and (ii) contribute to revising and improving the existing LCA dataset for Mediterranean farming systems. PMID:25265396

  3. Protein engineering strategies with potential applications for altering clinically relevant cellular pathways at the protein level.

    PubMed

    Regan, Lynne; Hinrichsen, Michael R; Oi, Curran

    2016-05-01

    All diseases can be fundamentally viewed as the result of malfunctioning cellular pathways. Protein engineering offers the potential to develop new tools that will allow these dysfunctional pathways to be better understood, in addition to potentially providing new routes to restore proper function. Here we discuss different approaches that can be used to change the intracellular activity of a protein by intervening at the protein level: targeted protein sequestration, protein recruitment, protein degradation, and selective inhibition of binding interfaces. The potential of each of these tools to be developed into effective therapeutic treatments will also be discussed, along with any major barriers that currently block their translation into the clinic. PMID:27031866

  4. Equol Induces Gonadal Intersex in Japanese Medaka (Oryzias latipes) at Environmentally Relevant Concentrations: Comparison with 17β-Estradiol.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chen; Zhang, Shiyi; Zhou, Yuyin; Huang, Chong; Mu, Di; Giesy, John P; Hu, Jianying

    2016-07-19

    Equol is present in the aquatic environment via livestock waste and runoff discharge; however, it remains unclear whether it can induce gonadal intersex in fish at environmentally relevant concentrations. This study evaluated adverse effects of equol on gonadal development by exposing transgenic Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) from hatching for 100 days. Equol induced intersex incidence in male medaka in a dose-dependent manner, and the benchmark dose corresponding to 10% intersex incidence (BMD10) was 11.5 ng/L (95% confidence interval (CI): 5.8 ng/L, 19.8 ng/L), which was comparable to the required dose of 17β-estradiol (E2β) (9.0 ng/L, 95% CI: 6.6 ng/L, 11.0 ng/L). Equol exposure resulted in reduced plasma 11-ketotestosterone (11-KT) concentrations in male medaka at 1.3 ng/L, while reduced plasma 11-KT concentrations were observed at a relatively high concentration (6.4 ng/L) of E2β. Such antiandrogenic property could partly explain the comparable potency of equol with that of E2β to induce intersex at relatively low concentrations, although the binding affinity of equol to medaka estrogen receptor α (EC50 939.4 nM) was 230-fold lower than that (4.07 nM) of E2β. This study for the first time demonstrated that equol could induce intersex in medaka fish at environmentally relevant concentrations. PMID:27305592

  5. Effects of environmentally relevant concentrations of metallic compounds on the flatfish Scophthalmus maximus: biomarkers of neurotoxicity, oxidative stress and metabolism.

    PubMed

    Nunes, Bruno; Brandão, Fátima; Sérgio, Tânia; Rodrigues, Sara; Gonçalves, Fernando; Correia, Alberto Teodorico

    2014-06-01

    Flatfish species, such as the turbot (Scophthalmus maximus), are common targets for toxic effects, since they are exposed through the food chain (ingestion of contaminated preys) and are in direct contact with the waterborne contaminant and sediments. Furthermore, these fish species live in close proximity to interstitial water that frequently dissolves high amounts of contaminants, including metals. Despite this significant set of characteristics, the present knowledge concerning flatfish contamination and toxicity by metals is still scarce. To attain the objective of assessing the effects of metals on a flatfish species, S. maximus specimens were chronically exposed to lead, copper and zinc, at ecologically relevant concentrations, and biochemical (oxidative stress: catalase and glutathione S-transferases activities, and lipid peroxidation; neurotoxicity: cholinesterase activity) parameters were assessed on selected tissues (gills and liver). Copper had no significant effects on all tested parameters; lead was causative of significant increases in liver GSTs activities and also in lipoperoxidation of gill tissue; exposure to zinc caused a significant increase in catalase activity of gill tissue. None of the tested metals elicited noteworthy effects in terms of neurotoxicity. The obtained results showed that only the metal lead is of some environmental importance, since it was able to cause deleterious modifications of oxidative nature at relevant concentrations. PMID:24595748

  6. Effect of relevant environmental stresses on survival of enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli in dry-fermented sausage.

    PubMed

    McLeod, Anette; Måge, Ingrid; Heir, Even; Axelsson, Lars; Holck, Askild L

    2016-07-16

    Dry-fermented sausages (DFSs) have been linked to several serious foodborne outbreaks of enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC). The ability of pathogens to utilize adaptive responses to different stressful conditions intended to control their growth in foods, food preparation and production processes may enhance their survival. In certain cases, induced tolerance to one type of stress may lead to enhanced resistance to the applied stress as well as to other stresses. We exposed two EHEC strains, MF3582 of serotype O157:H- and MF5554 of serogroup O145, to different stresses commonly encountered during a production process. The two EHEC strains, previously shown to have different abilities to survive DFS production process conditions, were subjected to low temperatures (4°C and 12°C), 5% NaCl or 1% lactic acid for 6days prior to being added to sausage batters. Survival of EHEC was recorded in salami of two recipes, fermented at two temperatures (20°C and 30°C). The results showed that recipe type had the largest impact on EHEC reductions where Moderate recipe (MR) salami batters containing increased levels of NaCl, glucose and NaNO2 provided enhanced EHEC reductions in salami (2.6 log10) compared to Standard recipe (SR) salami (1.7 log10). Effects of pre-exposure stresses were dependent both on strain and recipe. While acid adaptation of MF5554 provided enhanced log10 reductions from 2.0 to 3.0 in MR sausages, adaptation to a combination of acid and salt stress showed the opposite effect in SR sausages with reductions of only 1.1 log10 as compared to the average of 1.8 log10 for the other SR sausages. Otherwise, the salt and acid adaptation single stresses had relatively small effects on EHEC survival through the DFS production process and subsequent storage and freeze/thaw treatments. Growing cells and cells frozen in batter survived poorly in MR sausages with an average reduction of 3.4 and 3.2 log10, respectively. The reductions of EHEC after storage of

  7. Considerations for Architecture Level Trade Studies for Environmental Sensors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peterson, Craig

    2010-01-01

    Comparisons of key characteristics of environmental sensors such as technology readiness levels, mass, power, volume, and detection capabilities are essential for initial trade studies to determine likely candidates for further development and evaluation. However, these trade studies only provide part of the information necessary to make selection decisions. Ultimately, the sensors must be judged based on the overall system architectures and operational scenarios for which they are intended. This means that additional characteristics, such as architectural needs for redundancy, operational lifetime, ability to maintain calibration, and repair and replacement strategies, among others, must also be considered. Given that these characteristics can be extremely time-consuming and costly to obtain, careful planning is essential to minimize the effort involved. In this paper, an approach is explored for determining an effective yet comprehensive set of architecture level trades which is minimally impacted by the inevitable changes in operational (mission) scenarios. The approach will also identify and integrate the various facilities and opportunities required to obtain the desired architecture level trade information.

  8. Investigation of coatings of natural organic matter on silver nanoparticles under environmentally relevant conditions by surface-enhanced Raman scattering.

    PubMed

    Kühn, Melanie; Ivleva, Natalia P; Klitzke, Sondra; Niessner, Reinhard; Baumann, Thomas

    2015-12-01

    The widespread use of engineered inorganic nanoparticles (EINP) leads to a growing risk for an unintended release into the environment. Despite the good characterization of EINP in regard to their function scale and the application areas, there is still a gap of knowledge concerning their behaviour in the different environmental compartments. Due to their high surface to volume ratio, surface properties and existence or development of a coating are of high importance for their stability and transport behaviour. However, analytical methods to investigate organic coatings on nanoparticles in aqueous media are scarce. We used Raman microspectroscopy in combination with surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) to investigate humic acid coatings on silver nanoparticles under environmentally relevant conditions and in real world samples. This setup is more challenging than previous mechanistic studies using SERS to characterize the humic acids in tailored settings where only one type of organic matter is present and the concentrations of the nanoparticles can be easily adjusted to the experimental needs. SERS offers the unique opportunity to work with little sample preparation directly with liquid samples, thus significantly reducing artefacts. SERS spectra of different natural organic matter brought into contact with silver nanoparticles indicate humic acid in close proximity to the nanoparticles. This coating was also present after several washing steps by centrifugation and resuspension in deionized water and after an increase in ionic strength. PMID:25554386

  9. Relevance and clinical significance of serum resistin level in obese T2DM rhesus monkey models.

    PubMed

    Qi, S-D; He, Z-L; Chen, Y; Ma, J; Yu, W-H; Li, Y-Y; Yang, F-M; Wang, J-B; Chen, L-X; Zhao, Y; Lu, S-Y

    2015-09-01

    Resistin is a type of hormone-like adipocytokines, which is secreted specifically by adipocytes. It may be a key factor in the development of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) from obesity- associated insulin resistance due to results that show that it has a close relationship with insulin resistance in rodents. We utilized the rhesus monkeys as study objects to preliminarily test the association with glucose metabolism and to conduct a correlation analysis for clinical parameters and serum resistin levels in obese rhesus monkey models of T2DM. The results suggested that resistin was significantly increased in T2DM monkeys (P <0.01), and that resistin had a positive correlation respectively with total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein (LDL-C), fasting plasma glucose (FPG), fasting insulin (FPI) and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c), Insulin resistance index (HOA-IR), but a negative correlation with islet β-cell function (HOMA-β). In the course of glucose metabolism, reverse release change of resistin and insulin in T2DM monkeys occurred, but the phenomenon that was not observed in the control group, these findings indicated that resistin negatively regulated and interfered with carbohydrate metabolism in T2DM monkey models. The character of the releasing change of resistin might be a unique process in T2DM. Therefore, all of the results could provide references for clinical diagnostic criteria for human cases of T2DM, and could have clinical significance for obese T2DM diagnosis and degree of insulin resistance. PMID:26069076

  10. Social relevance drives viewing behavior independent of low-level salience in rhesus macaques.

    PubMed

    Solyst, James A; Buffalo, Elizabeth A

    2014-01-01

    Quantifying attention to social stimuli during the viewing of complex social scenes with eye tracking has proven to be a sensitive method in the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders years before average clinical diagnosis. Rhesus macaques provide an ideal model for understanding the mechanisms underlying social viewing behavior, but to date no comparable behavioral task has been developed for use in monkeys. Using a novel scene-viewing task, we monitored the gaze of three rhesus macaques while they freely viewed well-controlled composed social scenes and analyzed the time spent viewing objects and monkeys. In each of six behavioral sessions, monkeys viewed a set of 90 images (540 unique scenes) with each image presented twice. In two-thirds of the repeated scenes, either a monkey or an object was replaced with a novel item (manipulated scenes). When viewing a repeated scene, monkeys made longer fixations and shorter saccades, shifting from a rapid orienting to global scene contents to a more local analysis of fewer items. In addition to this repetition effect, in manipulated scenes, monkeys demonstrated robust memory by spending more time viewing the replaced items. By analyzing attention to specific scene content, we found that monkeys strongly preferred to view conspecifics and that this was not related to their salience in terms of low-level image features. A model-free analysis of viewing statistics found that monkeys that were viewed earlier and longer had direct gaze and redder sex skin around their face and rump, two important visual social cues. These data provide a quantification of viewing strategy, memory and social preferences in rhesus macaques viewing complex social scenes, and they provide an important baseline with which to compare to the effects of therapeutics aimed at enhancing social cognition. PMID:25414633

  11. A disposable picolitre bioreactor for cultivation and investigation of industrially relevant bacteria on the single cell level.

    PubMed

    Grünberger, Alexander; Paczia, Nicole; Probst, Christopher; Schendzielorz, Georg; Eggeling, Lothar; Noack, Stephan; Wiechert, Wolfgang; Kohlheyer, Dietrich

    2012-05-01

    In the continuously growing field of industrial biotechnology the scale-up from lab to industrial scale is still a major hurdle to develop competitive bioprocesses. During scale-up the productivity of single cells might be affected by bioreactor inhomogeneity and population heterogeneity. Currently, these complex interactions are difficult to investigate. In this report, design, fabrication and operation of a disposable picolitre cultivation system is described, in which environmental conditions can be well controlled on a short time scale and bacterial microcolony growth experiments can be observed by time-lapse microscopy. Three exemplary investigations will be discussed emphasizing the applicability and versatility of the device. Growth and analysis of industrially relevant bacteria with single cell resolution (in particular Escherichia coli and Corynebacterium glutamicum) starting from one single mother cell to densely packed cultures is demonstrated. Applying the picolitre bioreactor, 1.5-fold increased growth rates of C. glutamicum wild type cells were observed compared to typical 1 litre lab-scale batch cultivation. Moreover, the device was used to analyse and quantify the morphological changes of an industrially relevant l-lysine producer C. glutamicum after artificially inducing starvation conditions. Instead of a one week lab-scale experiment, only 1 h was sufficient to reveal the same information. Furthermore, time lapse microscopy during 24 h picolitre cultivation of an arginine producing strain containing a genetically encoded fluorescence sensor disclosed time dependent single cell productivity and growth, which was not possible with conventional methods. PMID:22511122

  12. Vintage-level energy and environmental performance of manufacturing establishments

    SciTech Connect

    Boyd, G.A.; Bock, M.J.; Neifer, M.J.; Karlson, S.H.; Ross, M.H.

    1994-05-01

    This report examines the relationship between an industrial plant`s vintage and its energy and environmental performance. Basic questions related to defining vintage and measuring the effects of the manufacturing industry`s vintage distribution of plant-level capacity and energy intensity are explored in general for six energy-intensive sectors (paper, chlorine, nitrogenous fertilizer, aluminum, steel, and cement) at the four-digit standard industrial classification (SIC) level and in detail for two sectors (steel and cement). Results show that greenfield (i.e., newly opened) plants in the paper, steel, and cement industries exhibit low fossil fuel intensities. These results are consistent with expectations. New plants in the paper and steel industries, where processes are undergoing electrification, exhibit high electricity intensities. An analysis of a subsector of the steel industry -- minimills that use scrap-based, electric arc furnaces -- reveals a decline in electricity intensity of 6.2 kilowatt-hours per ton for each newer year of installed vintage. This estimate is consistent with those of engineering studies and raises confidence that analyses of vintage effects in other industries could be conducted. When a vintage measure is assigned on the basis of investment data rather than trade association data, the vintage/performance relationship results for the cement industry are reasonably robust; thus, the analysis of vintage and performance could be extended to sectors for which only US Bureau of the Census data are available.

  13. Assessing the potential impact on the thyroid axis of environmentally relevant food constituents/contaminants in humans.

    PubMed

    Eisenbrand, Gerhard; Gelbke, Heinz-Peter

    2016-08-01

    Occurrence and mode of action of potentially relevant goitrogens in human nutrition and their mode of action (MOA) are reviewed, with special focus on the anionic iodine uptake inhibitors perchlorate (PER), thiocyanate (SCN) and nitrate (NO3). Epidemiological studies suggest persistent halogenated organic contaminants and phthalates as well as certain antimicrobials to deserve increased attention. This also applies to natural goitrogens, including polyphenols and glucosinolates, food constituents with limited data density concerning human exposure. Glucosinolates present in animal feed are presumed to contribute to SCN transfer into milk and milk products. PER, SCN and NO3 are well-investigated environmental goitrogens in terms of MOA and relative potency. There is compelling evidence from biomarker monitoring that the exposure to the goitrogens SCN and NO3 via human nutrition exceeds that of PER by orders of magnitude. The day-to-day variation in dietary intake of these substances (and of iodide) is concluded to entail corresponding variations in thyroidal iodide uptake, not considered as adverse to health or toxicologically relevant. Such normal variability of nutritional goitrogen uptake provides an obvious explanation for the variability in radioactive iodine uptake (RAIU) measurements observed in healthy individuals. Based on available data, a 20 % change in the thyroidal uptake of iodide is derived as threshold value for a biologically meaningful change induced by perchlorate and other goitrogens with the same MOA. We propose this value to be used as the critical effect size or benchmark response in benchmark dose analysis of human RAIU data. The resulting BMDL20 is 0.0165 mg/kg bw/day or 16.5 μg/kg bw/day. Applying a factor of 4, to allow for inter-human differences in toxicokinetics, leads to a TDI for perchlorate of 4 μg/kg bw/day. PMID:27169853

  14. Low-level (submicromole) environmental 14C metrology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Currie, L. A.; Kessler, J. D.; Marolf, J. V.; McNichol, A. P.; Stuart, D. R.; Donoghue, J. C.; Donahue, D. J.; Burr, G. S.; Biddulph, D.

    2000-10-01

    Accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) measurements of environmental 14C have been employed during the past decade at the several micromole level (tens of μg carbon), but advanced research in the atmospheric and marine sciences demands still higher (μg) sensitivity, an extreme example being the determination of 14C in elemental or "black" carbon (BC) at levels of 2-10 μg per kg of Greenland snow and ice (Currie et al., 1998). A fundamental limitation for 14C AMS is Poisson counting statistics, which sets in at about 1 μg modern-C. Using the small sample (25 μg) AMS target preparation facility at NOSAMS (Pearson et al., 1998), and the microsample combustion-dilution facility at NIST, we have demonstrated an intrinsic modern-C quantification limit ( mQ) of ca. 0.9 μg, based on a 1-parameter fit to the empirical AMS variance function. (For environmental 14C, the modern carbon quantification limit is defined as that mass ( mQ) corresponding to 10% relative standard deviation (rsd) for the fraction of modern carbon, σ( fM)/ fM.) Stringent control, required for quantitative dilution factors (DL), is achieved with the NIST on-line manometric/mass spectrometry facility that compensates also for unsuspected trace impurities from vigorous chemical processing (e.g., acid digestion). Our current combustion blank is trivial (mean: 0.16 ± 0.02 μg C, n=13) but lognormally distributed (dispersion [σ]: 0.07 ± 0.01 μg). An iterative numerical expression is introduced to assess the quantitative impacts of fossil and modern carbon blank components on mQ; and a new "clean chemistry" BC processing system is described for the minimization of such blanks. For the assay of soot carbon in Greenland snow/ice, the overall processing blank has been reduced from nearly 7 μg total carbon to less than 1 μg, and is undetectable for BC.

  15. Studies of Corrosion Resistant Materials Being Considered for High-Level Nuclear Waste Containment in Yucca Mountain Relevant Environments

    SciTech Connect

    McCright, R.D.; Ilevbare, G.; Estill, J.; Rebak, R.

    2001-12-09

    Containment of spent nuclear fuel and vitrified forms of high level nuclear waste require use of materials that are highly corrosion resistant to all of the anticipated environmental scenarios that can occur in a geological repository. Ni-Cr-Mo Alloy 22 (UNS N60622) is proposed for the corrosion resistant outer barrier of a two-layer waste package container at the potential repository site at Yucca Mountain. A range of water compositions that may contact the outer barrier is under consideration, and a testing program is underway to characterize the forms of corrosion and to quantify the corrosion rates. Results from the testing support models for long term prediction of the performance of the container. Results obtained to date indicate a very low general corrosion rate for Alloy 22 and very high resistance to all forms of localized and environmentally assisted cracking in environments tested to date.

  16. Structural characterization of environmentally relevant ternary uranyl citrate complexes present in aqueous solutions and solid state materials.

    PubMed

    Basile, Madeline; Unruh, Daniel K; Flores, Erin; Johns, Adam; Forbes, Tori Z

    2015-02-14

    Organic acids are important metal chelators in environmental systems and tend to form soluble complexes in aqueous solutions, ultimately influencing the transport and bioavailability of contaminants in surface and subsurface waters. This is particularly true for the formation of uranyl citrate complexes, which have been utilized in advanced photo- and bioremediation strategies for soils contaminated with nuclear materials. Given the complexity of environmental systems, the formation of ternary or heterometallic uranyl species in aqueous solutions are also expected, particularly with Al(iii) and Fe(iii) cations. These ternary forms are reported to be more stable in aqueous solutions, potentially enhancing contaminant mobility and uptake by organisms, but the exact coordination geometries of these soluble molecular complexes have not been elucidated. To provide insight into the nature of these species, we have developed a series of geochemical model compounds ([(UO(2))(2)Al(2)(C(6)H(4)O(7))(4)](6-) (U(2)Al(2)), [(UO(2))(2)Fe(2)(C(6)H(4)O(7))(4)](6-) (U(2)Fe(2)-1) and [(UO(2))(2)Fe(2)(C(6)H(4)O(7))(4)(H(2)O)(2)](6-) (U(2)Fe(2)-2) and [(UO(2))(2)Fe(4)(OH)(4)(C(6)H(4)O(7))(4)](8-) (U(2)Fe(4))) that were characterized by single-crystal X-ray diffraction and vibrational spectroscopy. Mass spectroscopy was then employed to compare the model compounds to species present in aqueous solutions to provide an enhanced understanding of the ternary uranyl citrate complexes that could be relevant in natural systems. PMID:25372632

  17. Uptake and biological effects of environmentally relevant concentrations of the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory pharmaceutical diclofenac in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).

    PubMed

    Mehinto, Alvine C; Hill, Elizabeth M; Tyler, Charles R

    2010-03-15

    Diclofenac, a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, is widely detected in surface waters and can potentially cause deleterious effects in fish. Here, we investigated the biological effects of 21-day exposure to waterborne diclofenac at environmentally relevant concentrations (0, 0.5, 1, 5, and 25 μg/L) in rainbow trout Accumulation of diclofenac in the bile was measured and responses in selected tissues were assessed via changes in the expression of selected genes (cytochrome P450 (cyp) 1a1, cyclooxygenase (cox) 1 and 2, and p53) involved in metabolism of xenobiotics, prostaglandin synthesis, and cell cycle control, respectively, together with histopathological alterations in these tissues. Diclofenac accumulated in the bile by a factor of between 509 ± 27 and 657 ± 25 and various metabolites were putatively identified as hydroxydiclofenac, diclofenac methyl ester, and the potentially reactive metabolite hydroxydiclofenac glucuronide. Expression levels of both cox1 and cox2 in liver, gills, and kidney were significantly reduced by diclofenac exposure from only 1 μg/L. Expression of cyp1a1 was induced in the liver and the gills but inhibited in the kidney of exposed fish. Diclofenac exposure induced tubular necrosis in the kidney and hyperplasia and fusion of the villi in the intestine from 1 μg/L. This study demonstrates that subchronic exposure to environmental concentrations of diclofenac can interfere with the biochemical functions of fish and lead to tissue damage, highlighting further the concern about this pharmaceutical in the aquatic environment. PMID:20175546

  18. A Study on Environmental Knowledge Level of Primary Students in Turkey

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gökdere, Murat

    2005-01-01

    The education system in Turkey has responded promptly to the need for environmental education (EE). However, the existing lack of relevant research may limit the functionality of EE programs in Turkey. In this study, the goal was to develop an environmental conscious database that would allow effective planning of EE. Specifically, the study was…

  19. Remote sensing of landscape-level coastal environmental indicators.

    PubMed

    Klemas, V V

    2001-01-01

    Advances in technology and decreases in cost are making remote sensing (RS) and geographic information systems (GIS) practical and attractive for use in coastal resource management. They are also allowing researchers and managers to take a broader view of ecological patterns and processes. Landscape-level environmental indicators that can be detected by Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and other remote sensors are available to provide quantitative estimates of coastal and estuarine habitat conditions and trends. Such indicators include watershed land cover, riparian buffers, shoreline and wetland changes, among others. With the launch of Landsat 7, the cost of TM imagery has dropped by nearly a factor of 10, decreasing the cost of monitoring large coastal areas and estuaries. New satellites, carrying sensors with much finer spatial (1-5 m) and spectral (200 narrow bands) resolutions are being launched, providing a capability to more accurately detect changes in coastal habitat and wetland health. Advances in the application of GIS help incorporate ancillary data layers to improve the accuracy of satellite land-cover classification. When these techniques for generating, organizing, storing, and analyzing spatial information are combined with mathematical models, coastal planners and managers have a means for assessing the impacts of alternative management practices. PMID:11083908

  20. Chronic exposure to environmental levels of tribromophenol impairs zebrafish reproduction

    SciTech Connect

    Deng Jun; Liu Chunsheng; Yu Liqin; Zhou Bingsheng

    2010-02-15

    Tribromophenol (2,4,6-TBP) is ubiquitously found in aquatic environments and biota. In this study, we exposed zebrafish embryos (F{sub 0}; 2'''' days post-fertilization, dpf) to environmental concentration (0.3 mug/L) and a higher concentration (3.0 mug/L) of TBP and assessed the impact of chronic exposure (120 dpf) on reproduction. TBP exposure did not cause a significant increase in the malformation and reduction in the survival in the F{sub 0}-generation fish. After TBP exposure, the plasma testosterone and estradiol levels significantly increased in males and decreased in females. The transcription of steroidogenic genes (3beta-HSD, 17beta-HSD, CYP17, CYP19A, CYP19B) was significantly upregulated in the brain and testes in males and downregulated in the brain and ovary in females. TBP exposure significantly downregulated and upregulated the expression of VTG in the liver of female and male fish, respectively. Meanwhile, TBP exposure altered the sex ratio toward a male-dominant state. The F{sub 1}-generation larvae exhibited increased malformation, reduced survival, and retarded growth, suggesting that TBP in the aquatic environment has significant adverse effects on fish population.

  1. Environmentally Relevant Concentrations of Atrazine and Ametrine Induce Micronuclei Formation and Nuclear Abnormalities in Erythrocytes of Fish.

    PubMed

    Botelho, R G; Monteiro, S H; Christofoletti, C A; Moura-Andrade, G C R; Tornisielo, V L

    2015-11-01

    A rapid and sensitive method using liquid chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry triple quadrupole direct aqueous injection for analysis of atrazine and ametrine herbicides in surface waters was developed. According to the validation method, water samples from six different locations in the Piracicaba River were collected monthly from February 2011 to January 2012 and injected into a liquid chromatographer/dual mass spectrometer without the need for sample extraction. The method was validated and shown to be precise and accurate; limits of detection and quantification were 0.07 and 0.10 µg L(-1) for atrazine and 0.09 and 0.14 µg L(-1) for ametrine. During the sampling period, concentrations of atrazine ranged from 0.11 to 1.92 µg L(-1) and ametrine from 0.25 to 1.44 µg L(-1). After analysis of the herbicides, Danio rerio were exposed a range of concentrations found in the river water to check the induction of micronuclei and nuclear abnormalities (NAs) in erythrocytes. Concentrations of atrazine and ametrine >1.0 and 1.5 µg L(-1), respectively, induced MN formation in D. rerio. Ametrine was shown to be more genotoxic to D. rerio because a greater incidence of NAs was observed compared with atrazine. Therefore, environmentally relevant concentrations of atrazine and ametrine found in the Piracicaba River are dangerous to the aquatic biota. PMID:26081367

  2. DNA alterations triggered by environmentally relevant polymetallic concentrations in marine clams Ruditapes philippinarum and polychaete worms Hediste diversicolor.

    PubMed

    Dedeh, Amina; Ciutat, Aurélie; Tran, Damien; Bourdineaud, Jean-Paul

    2014-11-01

    We exposed marine clams (Ruditapes philippinarum) and aquatic worms (Hediste diversicolor) to environmentally relevant concentrations of two metal mixtures each containing three divalent metals [(C₁ in µg/L) cadmium (Cd) 1, mercury (Hg) 0.1, and lead (Pb) 4] and [C₂ in µg/L) Cd 17, Hg 1.1, and Pb 55]. Animals collected in the Arcachon Bay were exposed for 8 days in microcosms made up of a mixed biotope consisting of a water column and natural marine sediment both taken up from the Arcachon Bay. Bioaccumulation analysis showed a significant increase of Cd, Hg, and Pb in clams, particularly at C₂ concentration in the water column reaching, in soft body, 2.3 ± 0.3 µg Cd/g, 0.7 ± 0.2 µg Hg/g, and 45 µg Pb/g dry weight (dw). DNA alterations and upregulation of the cox1 mitochondrial gene were also observed in clam gill after exposure to the metal blend. For worms exposed to the C₂ metal blend, DNA alterations and significant increase of Cd and Hg concentrations were observed reaching 0.5 ± 0.1 µg Cd/g and 2 ± 0.6 µg Hg/g dw. PMID:24998356

  3. How relevant is the deposition of mercury onto snowpacks? - Part 1: A statistical study on~the~impact of environmental factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Durnford, D. A.; Dastoor, A. P.; Steen, A. O.; Berg, T.; Ryzhkov, A.; Figueras-Nieto, D.; Hole, L. R.; Pfaffhuber, K. A.; Hung, H.

    2012-10-01

    deposited through wet processes is more strongly retained by snowpacks than mercury deposited through dry processes. Revolatilization of mercury deposited through wet processes may be inhibited through burial by fresh snowfalls and/or by its more central location, compared to that of mercury deposited through dry deposition, within snowpack snow grains. The two depositions of oxidized mercury together explain 84% of the variability in observed concentrations of mercury in surface snow, 52% of the variability of observed concentrations of mercury in seasonal snowpacks and their meltwater's ionic pulse, and only 20% of the variability of observed concentrations of mercury in long-term snowpack-related records; other environmental controls seemingly gain in relevance as time passes. The concentration of mercury in long-term records is apparently primarily affected by latitude; both the primary sources of anthropogenic mercury and the strong upper-level zonal winds are located in the midlatitudes.

  4. POPTOX: Population-level responses of an amphipod to contaminated marine sediments and other environmental stresses

    SciTech Connect

    DeWitt, T.H.

    1994-12-31

    Experimental measurements of population-level responses are useful to environmental management in two ways: (1) to estimate the fitness of populations in an ecological-risk study, and (2) to evaluate the ecological relevance of shorter-term acute and chronic toxicity tests that use the same test species. An experimental system was developed for modeling the population-level responses of the burrowing, estuarine amphipod, Leptocheirus plumulosus, to environmental stresses, including chemical contamination. Replicate cohorts of newborn amphipods were exposed to natural and anthropogenic (PAH-contaminated sediment) stresses under static-renewal conditions over periods varying up to their full life-span. The amphipods were periodically removed from the sediment, censused, measured, and returned alive to the exposure chamber; the resulting life-history data were used to develop age-based, matrix-algebraic, population-projection models. Preliminary experiments revealed that an exposure period of 12 weeks with a sampling frequency of 2 weeks was sufficient to model the population dynamics of this amphipod. This experimental system may also be,used to study the interaction between anthropogenic stresses and ecological stresses under controlled and long-term exposures.

  5. Thyroid disruption effects of environmental level perfluorooctane sulfonates (PFOS) in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Yan; Cui, Yuan; Chen, Hui-ming; Xie, Wen-ping

    2011-11-01

    Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), one of the emerging persistent organic pollutants (POPs), has caused growing international concern especially related to the potential disruption in the development and function of thyroid system. Xenopus laevis is an amphibian species widely used as a suitable amphibian model for thyroid disruption research. To study the thyroid disruption effects related to PFOS exposure at environmental low levels, X. laevis tadpoles were exposed to 0.1, 1, 10 and 100 μg/l PFOS in water respectively from stage 46/47 to stage 62. The results showed that the time to metamorphosis (presented by forelimb emergence, FLE) did not significantly change with PFOS exposure, but exhibited an increasing trend (except for 10 μg/l exposure). Partial colloid depletion was observed for PFOS exposure, but no significant histological abnormality was observed in treatment groups. In addition, PFOS exposure resulted in up-regulation of thyroid hormone-regulated genes-thyroid receptor beta A (TRβA), basic transcription element-binding protein (BTEB) and type II deiodinase (DI2) mRNA expression, presented as an inverted U-shaped dose response pattern. However, the mRNA expression of type III deiodinase (DI3) remained unaffected compared with the control. These results demonstrated that PFOS might disrupt the thyroid system in X. laevis tadpoles regarding FLE changes and regulation alternation of thyroid hormone-regulated genes. Our study has raised new concerns for possible thyroid disruption of PFOS in amphibians at environmental relevant levels. PMID:21809121

  6. How relevant is the deposition of mercury onto snowpacks? - Part 1: A statistical study on the impact of environmental factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Durnford, D. A.; Dastoor, A. P.; Steen, A. O.; Berg, T.; Ryzhkov, A.; Figueras-Nieto, D.; Hole, L. R.; Pfaffhuber, K. A.; Hung, H.

    2012-01-01

    A portion of the highly toxic methylmercury that bioaccumulates in aquatic life is created from mercury entering bodies of water with snowpack meltwater. To determine the importance of meltwater as a source of aquatic mercury, it is necessary to understand the environmental processes that govern the behavior of snowpack-related mercury. In this study we investigate relationships among 5 types of snowpack-related mercury observations and 20 model environmental variables. The observation types are the 24-h fractional loss of mercury from surface snow, and the concentrations of mercury in surface snow, seasonal snowpacks, the snowpack meltwater's ionic pulse, and long-term snowpack-related records. The model environmental variables include those related to atmospheric mercury, insolation, wind, atmospheric stability, snowpack physical characteristics, atmospheric pressure, and solid precipitation. Correlation coefficients and multiple linear regressions were calculated twice: once with all observations, and once with observations from locations presumably affected by oxidizing and stabilizing snowpack-related halogens excluded. We find that the presence of snowpack-related halogens has a significant impact on the behavior of snowpack-related mercury. Physically, snowpack-related mercury observations are most strongly controlled by the dry and wet depositions of oxidized mercury. The burial of mercury by fresh snowfalls and the wind driven ventilation of snowpacks are important processes. Indeed, in the absence of snowpack-related halogens, the 24-h fractional loss of mercury from surface snow is fully controlled by mercury deposition and surface-level atmospheric wind speed, stability, and surface pressure. The concentration of mercury in long-term records is affected by latitude, ventilation and surface pressure.

  7. Effects of the boscalid fungicide Filan® on the marine amphipod Allorchestes compressa at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Vu, Hung T; Keough, Michael J; Long, Sara M; Pettigrove, Vincent J

    2016-05-01

    Fungicides are widely used in agriculture to control fungal diseases. After application, fungicides can be transported offsite to surface and groundwater and ultimately enter estuarine and marine environments. The presence of fungicides in the marine environment may pose risks to marine organisms, but little is known about fungicide effects on these organisms, especially invertebrates. The present study investigated the effects of the commonly used boscalid fungicide Filan® on life history traits, feeding rate, and energy reserves (lipid, glycogen, and protein content) of the marine amphipod Allorchestes compressa over 6 wk under laboratory conditions. Amphipods were exposed to 3 concentrations of Filan (1 μg, 10 μg, and 40 μg active ingredient [a.i.]/L), with 5 replicates per treatment. Lipid content and reproduction were the most sensitive measures of effect, with lipid content reduced by 53.8% at the highest concentration. Survival, growth, and other energy reserves of amphipods were also negatively affected by Filan, and the effects were concentration dependent. Antennal deformities were incidentally observed on the amphipods at a concentration of 40 μg a.i./L. The results of the present study indicate comprehensive effects of the boscalid fungicide Filan on A. compressa at environmentally relevant concentrations. The decline or absence of A. compressa in marine ecosystems could impair the ecosystem function because of their important role in trophic transfer and nutrient recycling. The authors' results suggest that even though the use of fungicides is often regarded as posing only a minor risk to aquatic organisms, the assessment of their long-term effects is critical. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:1130-1137. © 2015 SETAC. PMID:26378894

  8. First evidences of PAMAM dendrimer internalization in microorganisms of environmental relevance: A linkage with toxicity and oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Gonzalo, Soledad; Rodea-Palomares, Ismael; Leganés, Francisco; García-Calvo, Eloy; Rosal, Roberto; Fernández-Piñas, Francisca

    2015-01-01

    This article reports novel results on the toxic mechanisms of action of amine- and hydroxyl-terminated poly(amidoamine) (PAMAM) dendrimers toward microorganisms of environmental relevance, namely a cyanobacterium of the genus Anabaena and the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. We used PAMAM ethylenediamine core dendrimers from generations G2 to G4, which displayed a positive charge, measured as ζ-potential, in culture media. All amine-terminated and most remarkably the G4 hydroxyl-terminated dendrimer inhibited the growth of both microorganisms. The effect on the growth of the green alga was significantly higher than that on the cyanobacterium. With concentrations expressed in terms of molarity, there was a clear relationship between dendrimer generation and toxicity, with higher toxicity for higher generation. Hormesis was observed for hydroxyl-terminated dendrimers at low concentrations. The cationic dendrimers and G4-OH significantly increased the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in both organisms. ROS formation was not related with the chloroplast or photosynthetic membranes and photosystem II photochemistry was unaffected. Cell damage resulted in cytoplasm disorganization and cell deformities and was associated to an increase in ROS formation and lipid peroxidation in mitochondria in the green alga; cell wall and membrane disruption with apparent loss of cytoplasmic contents was found in the cyanobacterium. It was determined for the first time that cationic PAMAM dendrimers were quickly and largely internalized by both organisms. These results warn against the generalization of the use of dendrimers, which may pose significant risk for the environment and particularly for primary producers which are determinant for the health of natural ecosystems. PMID:25325159

  9. IERL-RTP PROCEDURES MANUAL: LEVEL 1. ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT BIOLOGICAL TESTS FOR PILOT STUDIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The manual gives Level 1 biological testing procedures (recommended by Industrial Environmental Research Laboratory--Research Triangle Park) for personnel experienced in conducting bioassays on samples from industrial and energy producing processes. The phased environmental asses...

  10. Human-relevant levels of added sugar consumption increase female mortality and lower male fitness in mice.

    PubMed

    Ruff, James S; Suchy, Amanda K; Hugentobler, Sara A; Sosa, Mirtha M; Schwartz, Bradley L; Morrison, Linda C; Gieng, Sin H; Shigenaga, Mark K; Potts, Wayne K

    2013-01-01

    Consumption of added sugar has increased over recent decades and is correlated with numerous diseases. Rodent models have elucidated mechanisms of toxicity, but only at concentrations beyond typical human exposure. Here we show that comparatively low levels of added sugar consumption have substantial negative effects on mouse survival, competitive ability, and reproduction. Using Organismal Performance Assays--in which mice fed human-relevant concentrations of added sugar (25% kcal from a mixture of fructose and glucose, modeling high fructose corn syrup) and control mice compete in seminatural enclosures for territories, resources and mates--we demonstrate that fructose/glucose-fed females experience a twofold increase in mortality while fructose/glucose-fed males control 26% fewer territories and produce 25% less offspring. These findings represent the lowest level of sugar consumption shown to adversely affect mammalian health. Clinical defects of fructose/glucose-fed mice were decreased glucose clearance and increased fasting cholesterol. Our data highlight that physiological adversity can exist when clinical disruptions are minor, and suggest that Organismal Performance Assays represent a promising technique for unmasking negative effects of toxicants. PMID:23941916

  11. Establishing the "Biological Relevance" of Dipentyl Phthalate Reductions in Fetal Rat Testosterone Production and Plasma and Testis Testosterone Levels.

    PubMed

    Gray, Leon Earl; Furr, Johnathan; Tatum-Gibbs, Katoria R; Lambright, Christy; Sampson, Hunter; Hannas, Bethany R; Wilson, Vickie S; Hotchkiss, Andrew; Foster, Paul M D

    2016-01-01

    Phthalate esters (PEs) constitute a large class of compounds that are used for many consumer product applications. Many of the C2-C7 di-ortho PEs reduce fetal testicular hormone and gene expression levels in rats resulting in adverse effects seen later in life but it appears that relatively large reductions in fetal testosterone (T) levels and testis gene expression may be required to adversely affect reproductive development (Hannas, B. R., Lambright, C. S., Furr, J., Evans, N., Foster, P. M., Gray, E. L., and Wilson, V. S. (2012). Genomic biomarkers of phthalate-induced male reproductive developmental toxicity: a targeted RT-PCR array approach for defining relative potency. Toxicol. Sci. 125, 544-557). The objectives of this study were (1) to model the relationships between changes in fetal male rat plasma testosterone (PT), T levels in the testis (TT), T production (PROD), and testis gene expression with the reproductive malformation rates, and (2) to quantify the "biologically relevant reductions" (BRRs) in fetal T necessary to induce adverse effects in the offspring. In the fetal experiment, Harlan Sprague-Dawley rats were dosed with dipentyl phthalate (DPeP) at 0, 11, 33, 100, and 300 mg/kg/day from gestational days (GD) 14-18 and fetal testicular T, PT levels, and T Prod and gene expression were assessed on GD 18. In the postnatal experiment, rats were dosed with DPeP from GD 8-18 and reproductive development was monitored through adulthood. The dose-response curves for TT levels (ED(50) = 53 mg/kg) and T PROD (ED(50) = 45 mg/kg) were similar, whereas PT was reduced at ED50 = 19 mg/kg. When the reductions in TPROD and Insl3 mRNA were compared with the postnatal effects of in utero DPeP, dose-related reproductive alterations were noted when T PROD and Insl3 mRNA were reduced by >45% and 42%, respectively. The determination of BRR levels may enable risk assessors to utilize fetal endocrine data to help establish points of departure for

  12. The Effects of Mothers' Educational Levels on University Students' Environmental Protection Commitments and Environmental Behaviors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saraçli, Sinan; Yilmaz, Veysel; Arslan, Talha

    2014-01-01

    Problem Statement: The damage caused by recent environmental problems has led to increased environmental concerns and the development of environment-friendly consumption behaviours in almost every society. Environment-friendly consumption involves the consideration of environmental benefits by minimizing any damage done to the environment at all…

  13. Comparing the environmental footprints of home-care and personal-hygiene products: the relevance of different life-cycle phases.

    PubMed

    Koehler, Annette; Wildbolz, Caroline

    2009-11-15

    An in-depth life-cycle assessment of nine home-care and personal-hygiene products was conducted to determine the ecological relevance of different life-cycle phases and compare the environmental profiles of products serving equal applications. Using detailed data from industry and consumer-behavior studies a broad range of environmental impacts were analyzed to identify the main drivers in each life-cycle stage and potentials for improving the environmental footprints. Although chemical production significantly adds to environmental burdens, substantial impacts are caused in the consumer-use phase. As such, this research provides recommendations for product development, supply chain management, product policies, and consumer use. To reduce environmental burdens products should, for instance, be produced in concentrated form, while consumers should apply correct product dosages and low water temperatures during product application. PMID:20028065

  14. New techniques of low level environmental radiation monitoring at JLab

    SciTech Connect

    P. Degtiarenko, V. Popov

    2010-07-01

    We present the first long-term environmental radiation monitoring results obtained using the technique of pulse mode readout for the industry-standard Reuter-Stokes RSS-1013 argon-filled high pressure ionization chambers (HPIC). With novel designs for the front-end electronics readout and customized signal processing algorithms, we are capable of detecting individual events of gas ionization in the HPIC, caused by interactions of gammas and charged particles in the gas. The technique provides enough spectroscopic information to distinguish between several different types of environmental and man-made radiation. The technique also achieves a high degree of sensitivity and stability of the data, allowing long-term environmental radiation monitoring with unprecedented precision.

  15. Cerebral gene expression and neurobehavioural development after perinatal exposure to an environmentally relevant polybrominated diphenylether (BDE47).

    PubMed

    Haave, Marte; Folven, Kristin Ingvaldsen; Carroll, Thomas; Glover, Chris; Heegaard, Einar; Brattelid, Trond; Hogstrand, Christer; Lundebye, Anne-Katrine

    2011-10-01

    Nutrients in seafood are known to be beneficial for brain development. Effects of maternal exposure to 2,2',4,4' tetrabromo diphenylether (BDE47) was investigated, alongside the potential ameliorating impact of seafood nutrients, through assessment of neurobehaviour and gene expression in brain and liver. Developing mice were exposed during gestation and lactation via dams dosed through casein- or salmon-based feed, spiked with BDE47. Two concentrations were used: a low level (6 μg/kg feed) representing an environmentally realistic concentration and a high level (1,900 μg/kg feed) representing a BDE47 intake much higher than expected from frequents consumption of contaminated seafood. Experimental groups were similar with respect to reproductive success, growth and physical development. Minor, transient changes in neurobehavioural metrics were observed in groups given the highest dose of BDE47. No significant differences in behaviour or development were seen on postnatal day 18 among maternally exposed offspring. Cerebral gene expression investigated by microarray analyses and validated by RT-qPCR showed low fold changes for all genes, despite dose-dependent accumulation of BDE47 in brain tissue. The gene for glutamate ammonia ligase was upregulated compared to control in the casein-based high BDE47diet, suggesting potential impacts on downstream synaptic transmission. The study supported a previously observed regulation of Igfbp2 in brain with BDE47 exposure. Genes for hepatic metabolic enzymes were not influenced by BDE47. Potential neurotoxic effects and neurobehavioural aberrations after perinatal exposure to high levels of BDE47 were not readily observed in mice pups with the present experimental exposure regimes and methods of analysis. PMID:21630132

  16. Effects of Chronic Exposure to an Environmentally Relevant Mixture of Brominated Flame Retardants on the Reproductive and Thyroid System in Adult Male Rats

    PubMed Central

    Ernest, Sheila R.; Wade, Michael G.; Lalancette, Claudia; Ma, Yi-Qian; Berger, Robert G.; Robaire, Bernard; Hales, Barbara F.

    2012-01-01

    Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are incorporated into a wide variety of consumer products, are readily released into home and work environments, and are present in house dust. Studies using animal models have revealed that exposure to polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) may impair adult male reproductive function and thyroid hormone physiology. Such studies have generally characterized the outcome of acute or chronic exposure to a single BFR technical mixture or congener but not the impact of environmentally relevant BFR mixtures. We tested whether exposure to the BFRs found in house dust would have an adverse impact on the adult male rat reproductive system and thyroid function. Adult male Sprague Dawley rats were exposed to a complex BFR mixture composed of three commercial brominated diphenyl ethers (52.1% DE-71, 0.4% DE-79, and 44.2% decaBDE-209) and hexabromocyclododecane (3.3%), formulated to mimic the relative congener levels in house dust. BFRs were delivered in the diet at target doses of 0, 0.02, 0.2, 2, or 20 mg/kg/day for 70 days. Compared with controls, males exposed to the highest dose of BFRs displayed a significant increase in the weights of the kidneys and liver, which was accompanied by induction of CYP1A and CYP2B P450 hepatic drug–metabolizing enzymes. BFR exposure did not affect reproductive organ weights, serum testosterone levels, testicular function, or sperm DNA integrity. The highest dose caused thyroid toxicity as indicated by decreased serum thyroxine (T4) and hypertrophy of the thyroid gland epithelium. At lower doses, the thickness of the thyroid gland epithelium was reduced, but no changes in hormone levels (T4 and thyroid-stimulating hormone) were observed. Thus, exposure to BFRs affected liver and thyroid physiology but not male reproductive parameters. PMID:22387749

  17. Non-monotonic concentration-response relationship of TiO(2) nanoparticles in freshwater cladocerans under environmentally relevant UV-A light.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jungkon; Lee, Sangwoo; Kim, Chul-min; Seo, Jihyun; Park, Yena; Kwon, Dongwook; Lee, Song-Hee; Yoon, Tae-Hyun; Choi, Kyungho

    2014-03-01

    The effects of UV-A on the toxicity of TiO2 nano-particles (NPs) were evaluated using Moina macrocopa and Daphnia magna under environmentally relevant level of UV-A. The waterfleas were exposed to TiO2 NPs with different sizes of ~298nm, ~132nm, or ~72nm for up to 48h, with or without UV-A light. Whole body reactive oxygen species and transcription of antioxidant enzyme genes were measured, as well as the survival of the waterflea. In the presence of UV-A, the survival rates of M. macrocopa significantly decreased in concentration dependent way until ~1mg/L TiO2 NPs, but the survivals were reversed at greater concentrations. This peculiar non-monotonic trend of concentration-response relationship might be explained by changes of particle size under different light conditions. TiO2 NPs within a certain size range could be trapped in the filter apparatus and exert toxicity, and the NPs of greater size were subject to either precipitation or ingestion leading to no or little toxicity. Observed TiO2 toxicity was associated with oxidative stress in the filter apparatus. The results of this study showed that the size change due to UV-A irradiation should be considered in evaluation of ecological risks of TiO2 NP. PMID:24507152

  18. Environmental levels of the antidepressant venlafaxine impact the metabolic capacity of rainbow trout.

    PubMed

    Best, Carol; Melnyk-Lamont, Nataliya; Gesto, Manuel; Vijayan, Mathilakath M

    2014-10-01

    The antidepressant venlafaxine is detected at parts per billion levels in tertiary-treated municipal wastewater effluent. However, the impact of this serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) on non-target aquatic animals is poorly understood. We tested the hypothesis that environmentally relevant levels of venlafaxine disrupt the highly conserved cortisol and glucose response to stress in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). Juvenile trout were exposed to venlafaxine (0, 0.2 and 1.0 μg/L) in a static system with daily renewal for seven days. The fish were then subjected to an acute handling disturbance and sampled either prior to (0 h) or 1, 4 and 24h after stressor exposure. Venlafaxine exposure did not affect the handling disturbance-mediated transient elevation in plasma cortisol levels or target tissue glucocorticoid receptor expression. The drug exposure disrupted the interrenal steroidogenic capacity, including altered handling stressor-mediated changes in mRNA abundances of steroidogenic acute regulatory protein and cytochrome P450 side chain cleavage. The handling stressor-induced transient elevations in plasma glucose levels were significantly reduced in the venlafaxine-exposed fish. This was not accompanied by changes in liver glycogen content, glucose transporter 2 mRNA abundance or the glycolytic capacity, whereas the capacity for gluconeogenesis and amino acid catabolism were enhanced. Venlafaxine also brought about changes in the gill of trout, including enhanced lactate dehydrogenase activity and Na(+)-K(+) ATPase protein expression, while the Na(+)-K(+) ATPase enzyme activity was reduced. Collectively, our results demonstrate that venlafaxine at levels detected in the aquatic environment impacts tissue metabolic capacities and may compromise the adaptive responses to an acute stressor in rainbow trout. PMID:25036621

  19. Measurement of Actinides in Environmental Samples at Micro-Becquerel Levels by Accelerator Mass Spectrometry

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, T A; Knezovich, J P; Marchetti, A A; Hamilton, T F

    2002-09-03

    The need for ultra-sensitive actinide measurements continues to expand in the fields of environmental stewardship, nuclear isotope forensics, radiobioassay and environmental research. We have developed a heavy isotope accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) system at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (CAMS). The system was designed particularly for the measurement of actinide concentrations and isotopic ratios. A fast isotope switching capability has been incorporated in the system, allowing flexibility in isotope selection and for the quasi-continuous normalization to a reference isotope spike. Initially, our utilization of the system has concentrated on the measurement of Pu isotopes. Under current operating conditions, background levels equivalent to <10{sup 6} atoms are observed during routine {sup 239}Pu and {sup 240}Pu measurements. Measurements of samples containing 10{sup 13} {sup 238}U atoms demonstrate that the system provides a {sup 238}U rejection factor of >10{sup 7}. Recently, we have utilized the high dynamic range of the AMS system in measuring samples whose Pu contents ranged from <10{sup 6} (background) to >10{sup 11} Pu atoms. Measurements of known materials, combined with results from an externally organized intercomparison program, indicate that our {sup 239}Pu measurements are accurate and precise down to the {mu}Bq level ({approx}10{sup 6} atoms). The development of the heavy isotope system was undertaken with particular interest in the measurement of environmental samples, including soils, sediments, waters, air filters, tissue samples, and human urine. The high rejection of interferences, including molecular interferences, and low susceptibility to matrix components, provided by the AMS technique are of particular relevance for such complex samples. These two factors significantly reduce demands on sample preparation chemistry for Pu analyses, allowing relatively simple, cost-effective procedures

  20. The level of knowledge and awareness about prostate cancer in the Turkish male and the relevant effective factors

    PubMed Central

    Turkan, Sadi; Doğan, Faruk; Ekmekçioğlu, Ozan; Çolak, Aslıhan; Kalkan, Mehmet; Şahin, Çoşkun

    2016-01-01

    Objective Our aim was to determine the general knowledge and awareness levels, information sources, and the state of medical check-up for prostate cancer (PCa) and relevant effective factors. Material and methods The participants were asked to answer to 14 questions of a questionnaire about age, education, economic and social condition, knowledge about PCa, state of being examined and their related factors. According to demographic characteristics of the participants, levels of awareness about PCa, sources of information, affecting factors and their interrelationships were examined. Two groups were formed according to age (<60 years, >60 years) and variations according to ages were investigated. Results Two hundred and ninety-three men with an average age of 57 years (range 40–85) were included in the study. Our findings showed that 68.3% of the participants were thinking that PCa is a frequently seen disease, 88.4% were thinking that it can be treated and 62.8% of men specified that their information sources are doctors. We also found that 60.8% of the participants had not undergone prostate examination and prostate specific antigen (PSA) control. The most reason for not having annual examinations was (44.4%) “negligence”. Significantly greater number of men with higher education (high school/university) were highly informed about PCa (p=0.037). Check-up rates were statistically significantly higher among men with intermediate income (p=0.041). Curability of PCa diagnosed at an early stage was acknowledged by statistically higher number of individuals under the age 60 (p<0.05). Health control, prostate examination and/or PSA control rates were higher in men with a family history of PCa and in the group of >60 years. Conclusion Although PCa has a high prevalence and mortality rates, personal and social information and sensitivity levels must be increased as it can be treated if diagnosed at an early stage. We think that social and medical impact of the

  1. AIR AND ENERGY ENGINEERING RESEARCH LABORATORY (AEERL) PROCEDURES MANUAL: LEVEL 1 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT TERRESTRIAL ECOLOGICAL TESTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The manual provides detailed procedures for EPA/AEERL's Level 1 terrestrial bioassays. (Some test methods designated for AEERL's Level 1 environmental assessment biological testing program are sufficiently new that little or no published literature is available describing specifi...

  2. Toxicity of CeO2 nanoparticles on a freshwater experimental trophic chain: A study in environmentally relevant conditions through the use of mesocosms.

    PubMed

    Bour, Agathe; Mouchet, Florence; Cadarsi, Stéphanie; Silvestre, Jérôme; Verneuil, Laurent; Baqué, David; Chauvet, Eric; Bonzom, Jean-Marc; Pagnout, Christophe; Clivot, Hugues; Fourquaux, Isabelle; Tella, Marie; Auffan, Mélanie; Gauthier, Laury; Pinelli, Eric

    2016-03-01

    The toxicity of CeO2 NPs on an experimental freshwater ecosystem was studied in mesocosm, with a focus being placed on the higher trophic level, i.e. the carnivorous amphibian species Pleurodeles waltl. The system comprised species at three trophic levels: (i) bacteria, fungi and diatoms, (ii) Chironomus riparius larvae as primary consumers and (iii) Pleurodeles larvae as secondary consumers. NP contamination consisted of repeated additions of CeO2 NPs over 4 weeks, to obtain a final concentration of 1 mg/L. NPs were found to settle and accumulate in the sediment. No effects were observed on litter decomposition or associated fungal biomass. Changes in bacterial communities were observed from the third week of NP contamination. Morphological changes in CeO2 NPs were observed at the end of the experiment. No toxicity was recorded in chironomids, despite substantial NP accumulation (265.8 ± 14.1 mg Ce/kg). Mortality (35.3 ± 6.8%) and a mean Ce concentration of 13.5 ± 3.9 mg/kg were reported for Pleurodeles. Parallel experiments were performed on Pleurodeles to determine toxicity pathways: no toxicity was observed by direct or dietary exposures, although Ce concentrations almost reached 100 mg/kg. In view of these results, various toxicity mechanisms are proposed and discussed. The toxicity observed on Pleurodeles in mesocosm may be indirect, due to microorganism's interaction with CeO2 NPs, or NP dissolution could have occurred in mesocosm due to the structural complexity of the biological environment, resulting in toxicity to Pleurodeles. This study strongly supports the importance of ecotoxicological assessment of NPs under environmentally relevant conditions, using complex biological systems. PMID:26152687

  3. Environmentally relevant concentration of arsenic trioxide and humic acid promoted tumor progression of human cervical cancer cells: In vivo and in vitro studies.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Min-Ling; Yen, Cheng-Chieh; Lu, Fung-Jou; Ting, Hung-Chih; Chang, Horng-Rong

    2016-09-01

    In a previous study, treatment at higher concentrations of arsenic trioxide or co-exposure to arsenic trioxide and humic acid was found to be inhibited cell growth of cervical cancer cells (SiHa cells) by reactive oxygen species generation. However, treatment at lower concentrations slightly increased cell viability. Here, we investigate the enhancement of progression effects of environmentally relevant concentration of humic acid and arsenic trioxide in SiHa cell lines in vitro and in vivo by measuring cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and the carcinogenesis-related protein (MMP-2, MMP-9, and VEGF-A) expressions. SiHa cells treated with low concentrations of humic acid and arsenic trioxide alone or in co-exposure significantly increased reactive oxygen species, glutathione levels, cell proliferation, scratch wound-healing activities, migration abilities, and MMP-2 expression as compared to the untreated control. In vivo the tumor volume of either single drug (humic acid or arsenic trioxide) or combined drug-treated group was significantly larger than that of the control for an additional 45 days after tumor cell injection on the back of NOD/SCID mice. Levels of MMP-2, MMP-9, and VEGF-A, also significantly increased compared to the control. Histopathologic effects of all tumor cells appeared round in cell shape with high mitosis, focal hyperkeratosis and epidermal hyperplasia in the skin, and some tumor growth in the muscle were observed. Our results may indicate that exposure to low concentrations of arsenic trioxide and humic acid is associated with the progression of cervical cancer. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Environ Toxicol 31: 1121-1132, 2016. PMID:25728215

  4. Blood lead and cadmium levels and relevant factors among children from an e-waste recycling town in China

    SciTech Connect

    Zheng Liangkai; Wu Kusheng; Li Yan; Qi Zongli; Han Dai; Zhang Bao; Gu Chengwu; Chen Gangjian; Liu Junxiao; Chen Songjian; Xu Xijin; Huo Xia

    2008-09-15

    Background: Primitive electronic waste (e-waste) recycling is ongoing in Guiyu, and thus toxic heavy metals may keep on threatening to the health of local children. Some related factors may contribute to the elevation of blood lead levels (BLLs) or blood cadmium levels (BCLs). Objective: To investigate the children's BLLs and BCLs in Guiyu and Chendian as compare to discuss the effects of primitive e-waste recycling activities on children's health. Methods: Two hundred and seventy-eight children less than 8 years who lived in Guiyu and Chendian were observed, and their BLLs and BCLs were determined by graphite atomizer absorption spectrophotometer. Questionnaire survey for risk factors was also performed and data were analyzed using spearman correlation analyses and logistic regression analyses. Results: Children living in Guiyu had significantly higher BLLs and BCLs as compared with those living in Chendian (p<0.01). In Guiyu, 70.8% of children (109/154) had BLLs>10 {mu}g/dL, and 20.1% of children (31/154) had BCLs>2 {mu}g/L, compared with 38.7% of children (48/124) had BLLs>10 {mu}g/dL and 7.3% of children (9/124) had BCLs>2 {mu}g/L in Chendian (p<0.01, respectively). We also observed a significant increasing trend in BLLs with increasing age in Guiyu (p<0.01). Mean height of children in Guiyu was significantly lower than that in Chendian (p<0.01). The risk factors related to children's BLLs and BCLs mainly included father's engagement in the work related to e-waste, children's residence in Guiyu and the amount of time that children played outside near the road everyday. Conclusions: There are close relationships between the BLLs, BCLs in children and the primitive e-waste recycling activities in Guiyu. Environmental pollution, especially lead pollution, has threatened the health of children living around e-waste recycling site.

  5. 77 FR 58416 - Comparative Environmental Evaluation of Alternatives for Handling Low-Level Radioactive Waste...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-09-20

    ... Spent Ion Exchange Resins From Commercial Nuclear Power Plants AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission... Environmental Evaluation of Alternatives for Handling Low-Level Radioactive Waste Spent Ion Exchange Resins from... Comparative Environmental Evaluation of Alternatives for Handling Low-Level Radioactive Waste Spent...

  6. (CALIFORNIA) META-ANALYSIS OF THE LIFE STYLE FACTORS RELEVANT TO ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARDS FOR THE AGING POPULATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of this U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Aging Initiative study is to characterize activity patterns, physiological changes, and environmental exposures for the aging population. Meta-analysis was performed on more than 2000 reviewed articles to evaluate the l...

  7. Behavioral response of manatees to variations in environmental sound levels

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Miksis-Olds, J. L.; Wagner, T.

    2011-01-01

    Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) inhabit coastal regions because they feed on the aquatic vegetation that grows in shallow waters, which are the same areas where human activities are greatest. Noise produced from anthropogenic and natural sources has the potential to affect these animals by eliciting responses ranging from mild behavioral changes to extreme aversion. Sound levels were calculated from recordings made throughout behavioral observation periods. An information theoretic approach was used to investigate the relationship between behavior patterns and sound level. Results indicated that elevated sound levels affect manatee activity and are a function of behavioral state. The proportion of time manatees spent feeding and milling changed in response to sound level. When ambient sound levels were highest, more time was spent in the directed, goal-oriented behavior of feeding, whereas less time was spent engaged in undirected behavior such as milling. This work illustrates how shifts in activity of individual manatees may be useful parameters for identifying impacts of noise on manatees and might inform population level effects. ?? 2010 by the Society for Marine Mammalogy.

  8. The effects of an environmentally relevant 58-congener polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) mixture on cardiac development in the chick embryo.

    PubMed

    Carro, Tiffany; Taneyhill, Lisa A; Ann Ottinger, Mary

    2013-06-01

    Chicken (Gallus domesticus) embryonic exposure in ovo to a 58-congener polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) mixture resulted in teratogenic heart defects in chick embryos at critical heart developmental stages Hamburger-Hamilton (HH) stages 10, 16, and 20. The 58-congener mixture contained relative proportions of primary congeners measured in belted sandpiper (Megaceryle alcyon) and spotted sandpiper (Actitis macularia) eggs collected along the upper Hudson River, New York, USA, and chicken doses were well below observed environmental exposure levels. Embryos were injected with 0.08 µg PCBs/g egg weight and 0.50 µg PCBs/g egg weight (0.01 and 0.064 ng toxic equivalent/g, respectively) at embryonic day 0, prior to incubation. Mortality of exposed embryos was increased at all developmental stages, with a marked rise in cardiomyopathies at HH16 and HH20 (p < 0.05). Heart abnormalities occurred across all treatments, including abnormal elongation and expansion of the heart tube at HH10, improper looping and orientation, indentations in the emerging ventricular wall (HH16 and HH20), and irregularities in overall heart shape (HH10, HH16, and HH20). Histology was conducted on 2 cardiac proteins critical to embryonic heart development, ventricular myosin heavy chain and titin, to investigate potential mechanistic effects of PCBs on heart development, but no difference was observed in spatiotemporal expression. Similarly, cellular apoptosis in the developing heart was not affected by exposure to the PCB mixture. Conversely, cardiomyocyte proliferation rates dramatically declined (p < 0.01) at HH16 and HH20 as PCB exposure concentrations increased. Early embryonic cardiomyocyte proliferation contributes to proper formation of the morphology and overall thickness of the ventricular wall. Therefore, in ovo exposure to this 58-congener PCB mixture at critical stages adversely affects embryonic heart development. PMID:23417652

  9. Study of genetic damage in the Japanese oyster induced by an environmentally-relevant exposure to diuron: evidence of vertical transmission of DNA damage.

    PubMed

    Barranger, A; Akcha, F; Rouxel, J; Brizard, R; Maurouard, E; Pallud, M; Menard, D; Tapie, N; Budzinski, H; Burgeot, T; Benabdelmouna, A

    2014-01-01

    Pesticides represent a major proportion of the chemical pollutants detected in French coastal waters and hence a significant environmental risk with regards to marine organisms. Commercially-raised bivalves are particularly exposed to pollutants, among them pesticides, as shellfish farming zones are subject to considerable pressure from agricultural activities on the mainland. The aims of this study were to determine (1) the genotoxic effects of diuron exposure on oyster genitors and (2) the possible transmission of damaged DNA to offspring and its repercussions on oyster fitness. To investigate these points, oysters were exposed to concentrations of diuron close to those detected in the Marennes-Oleron Basin (two 7-day exposure pulses at 0.4 and 0.6 μg L(-1)) during the gametogenesis period. Genomic abnormalities were characterized using two complementary approaches. The Comet assay was applied for the measurement of early and reversible primary DNA damage, whereas flow cytometry was used to assess the clastogenic and aneugenic effect of diuron exposure. Polar Organic Chemical Integrative Samplers (POCIS) were used in exposed and assay tanks to confirm the waterborne concentration of diuron reached during the experiment. The results obtained by the Comet assay clearly showed a higher level of DNA strand breaks in both the hemocytes and spermatozoa of diuron-exposed genitors. The transmission of damaged genetic material to gamete cells could be responsible for the genetic damage measured in offspring. Indeed, flow cytometry analyses showed the presence of DNA breakage and a significant decrease in DNA content in spat from diuron-exposed genitors. The transmission of DNA damage to the offspring could be involved in the negative effects observed on offspring development (decrease in hatching rate, higher level of larval abnormalities, delay in metamorphosis) and growth. In this study, the vertical transmission of DNA damage was so highlighted by subjecting oyster

  10. Effects of Tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) Phosphate on Growth, Reproduction, and Gene Transcription of Daphnia magna at Environmentally Relevant Concentrations.

    PubMed

    Li, Han; Su, Guanyong; Zou, Ming; Yu, Liqin; Letcher, Robert J; Yu, Hongxia; Giesy, John P; Zhou, Bingsheng; Liu, Chunsheng

    2015-11-01

    The synthetic flame retardant tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TDCIPP) has been frequently detected in natural waters, and its maximum concentration ever reported is 377 ng/L. However, information on the adverse effects of environmentally relevant concentrations of TDCIPP on aquatic organisms are totally unknown. In this study, <12-h old water fleas, D. magna, were exposed to concentrations of 0, 65±7.1, 550±33, or 6500±1400 ng/L TDCIPP, and dose- and time-dependent effects on reproduction and development were evaluated. Sequences of genes of D. magna were obtained from the National Center for Biotechnology Information and were used to develop PCR arrays for D. magna. Arrays were then used to study transcriptional responses of D. magna to TDCIPP. Exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations of TDCIPP significantly decreased fecundity as well as length of F0 and F1 generations. Transcriptional responses showed that, of the 155 genes tested, expressions of 57 genes were significantly changed, and some changes occurred following exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations (i.e., 65±7.1 and 550±23 ng/L). Furthermore, pathways related to protein synthesis and metabolism and endocytosis were considered to be significantly affected in a dose- and time-dependent manner and might be responsible for TDCIPP-induced reproductive and developmental toxicities. PMID:26422752

  11. Genetic and environmental impacts on DNA methylation levels in twins.

    PubMed

    Yet, Idil; Tsai, Pei-Chien; Castillo-Fernandez, Juan E; Carnero-Montoro, Elena; Bell, Jordana T

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetics describes the study of cellular modifications that can modify the expression of genes without changing the DNA sequence. DNA methylation is one of the most stable and prevalent epigenetic mechanisms. Twin studies have been a valuable model for unraveling the genetic and epigenetic epidemiology of complex traits, and now offer a potential to dissect the factors that impact DNA methylation variability and its biomedical significance. The twin design specifically allows for the study of genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors, and their potential interactions, on epigenetic profiles. Furthermore, genetically identical twins offer a unique opportunity to assess nongenetic impacts on epigenetic profiles. Here, we summarize recent findings from twin studies of DNA methylation profiles across tissues, to define current knowledge regarding the genetic and nongenetic factors that influence epigenetic variation. PMID:26678685

  12. Environmentalism and low-level waste-the aftermath

    SciTech Connect

    Pastorelle, P.J.

    1995-05-01

    Radical Environmentalists, anxious to shut down nuclear power, are directing efforts against the disposal of low-level radioactive wastes (contaminated coveralls, tools, paper, plastic, glass, etc.). The rationals is that if nuclear power facilities cannot dispose of their waste streams, eventually they may have to stop operating. This article discusses the political and practical issues surrounding this approach.

  13. Elevated levels of somatic mutation of the glycophorin A locus in cancer patients: Relevance for incidence of secondary cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Grant, S.G.; Bigbee, W.L.

    1994-09-01

    The glycophorin A (GPA)-based human in vivo somatic mutation assay was used to survey a large number of newly diagnosed cancer patients presenting with a variety of solid tumors. This cancer patient population was sampled pre-therapy and frequencies of two types of variant cells determined: allele loss segregants arising by mutation, deletion, chromosome loss or gene inactivation, and allele loss and duplication segregants arising by chromosome missegregation, mitotic recombination and possibly gene conversion. When compared with matched controls, the cancer patient population exhibited significantly elevated frequencies of both types of segregants. Cancer patients undergoing genotoxic therapy with chemicals and/or ionizing radiation were then examined, yielding variable results depending on the particular agent. In patients receiving localized high dose radiotherapy there was no response with either endpoint. In most cases involving chemotherapy, a significant elevation in the frequency of allele loss variants was observed within one month of the initiation of therapy which persisted at least one erythrocyte lifetime ({approximately}4 months) post therapy. In a subset of these cases, specifically, involving the known stem cell mutagen cis-platinum, the allele loss variant cell frequency remained significantly elevated up to 7 years after treatment. These results indicate that individuals with cancer have inherently higher levels of somatic mutation and segregation, due to genetic predisposition or exposure to environmental genotoxicants, or both, and that certain types of cancer therapy add significantly to the burden of mutation. These data provide a molecular rationale for the increased frequency of secondary malignancy observed in primary cancer patients: they are at increased risk of already having or easily acquiring the necessary carcinogenic events implicated in the progression of multi-step oncogenesis.

  14. Using 7 cm immobilized pH gradient strips to determine levels of clinically relevant proteins in wheat grain extracts

    PubMed Central

    Fekecsová, Sona; Danchenko, Maksym; Uvackova, Lubica; Skultety, Ludovit; Hajduch, Martin

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the work was to test a relatively simple proteomics approach based on phenol extraction and two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) with 7 cm immobilized pH gradient strips for the determination of clinically relevant proteins in wheat grain. Using this approach, 157 2-DE spots were quantified in biological triplicate, out of which 55 were identified by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization – time of flight tandem mass spectrometry. Clinically relevant proteins associated with celiac disease, wheat dependent exercise induced anaphylaxis, baker’s asthma, and food allergy, were detected in 24 2-DE spots. However, alcohol-soluble gliadins were not detected with this approach. The comparison with a recent quantitative study suggested that gel-based and gel-free proteomics approaches are complementary for the detection and quantification of clinically relevant proteins in wheat grain. PMID:26124766

  15. Switching from posaconazole suspension to tablets increases serum drug levels in leukemia patients without clinically relevant hepatotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Jung, Dong Sik; Tverdek, Frank P; Kontoyiannis, Dimitrios P

    2014-11-01

    We evaluated posaconazole serum concentrations and hepatotoxicity in 12 leukemia patients who transitioned from posaconazole suspension to tablets. Patients who switched to tablets had significantly increased posaconazole concentrations (median: suspension, 748 ng/ml; tablet, 1,910 ng/ml; P < 0.01) without clinically relevant hepatotoxicity. PMID:25199774

  16. The Interface of Environmental and Humane Education as an Emerging and Relevant Dialogue: A Point of View from Brazil

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castellano, Maria; Quirino de Luca, Andrea; Sorrentino, Marcos

    2011-01-01

    This article addresses the interface between environmental and humane education, as a theoretical and practical emerging field in Brazil. We begin by presenting conceptual similarities that, in our view, underpin and justify the need for a growing connection between the two fields of research and educational practice. We then describe an…

  17. DETERMINATION OF PHENOLS IN ENVIRONMENTALLY RELEVANT MATRICES WITH THE USE OF LIQUID CHROMATOGRAPHY WITH AN ENZYME ELECTRODE DETECTOR

    EPA Science Inventory

    A simple and rapid assay using HPLC with a tyrosinase-containing carbon paste electrode (Tyr-CPE) detector is demonstrated for the detection of phenol, p-cresol, p-methoxyphenol, and p-chlorophenol in environmental matrices. These compounds were measured in contaminated aqueous...

  18. Carboxylic acid functionalization prevents the translocation of multi-walled carbon nanotubes at predicted environmentally relevant concentrations into targeted organs of nematode Caenorhabditis elegans

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nouara, Abdelli; Wu, Qiuli; Li, Yinxia; Tang, Meng; Wang, Haifang; Zhao, Yuliang; Wang, Dayong

    2013-06-01

    Carboxyl (-COOH) surface modified multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs-COOH) can be used for targeted delivery of drugs and imaging. However, whether MWCNTs-COOH at environmentally relevant concentrations exert certain toxic effects on multicellular organisms and the underlying mechanisms are still largely unclear. In the present study, we applied the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans to evaluate the properties of MWCNTs-COOH at environmentally relevant concentrations by comparing the effects of MWCNTs and MWCNTs-COOH exposure on C. elegans from L1-larvae to adult at concentrations of 0.001-1000 μg L-1. Exposure to MWCNTs could potentially damage the intestine (primary targeted organ) at concentrations greater than 0.1 μg L-1 and functions of neurons and reproductive organ (secondary targeted organs) at concentrations greater than 0.001 μg L-1. Carboxyl modification prevented the toxicity of MWCNTs on the primary and the secondary targeted organs at concentrations less than 100 μg L-1, suggesting that carboxyl modification can effectively prevent the adverse effects of MWCNTs at environmentally relevant concentrations. After exposure, MWCNTs-COOH (1 mg L-1) were translocated into the spermatheca and embryos in the body through the primary targeted organs. However, MWCNTs-COOH (10 μg L-1) were not observed in spermatheca and embryos in the body of nematodes. Moreover, relatively high concentrations of MWCNTs-COOH exposed nematodes might have a hyper-permeable intestinal barrier, whereas MWCNTs-COOH at environmentally relevant concentrations effectively sustained the normally permeable state for the intestinal barrier. Therefore, we elucidated the cellular basis of carboxyl modification to prevent toxicity of MWCNTs at environmentally relevant concentrations. Our data highlights the key role of biological barriers in the primary targeted organs to block toxicity formation from MWCNTs, which will be useful for the design of effective prevention strategies against

  19. Effects of the lipid regulating drug clofibric acid on PPARα-regulated gene transcript levels in common carp (Cyprinus carpio) at pharmacological and environmental exposure levels

    PubMed Central

    Corcoran, Jenna; Winter, Matthew J.; Lange, Anke; Cumming, Rob; Owen, Stewart F.; Tyler, Charles R.

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα) plays a key role in regulating various genes involved in lipid metabolism, bile acid synthesis and cholesterol homeostasis, and is activated by a diverse group of compounds collectively termed peroxisome proliferators (PPs). Specific PPs have been detected in the aquatic environment; however little is known on their pharmacological activity in fish. We investigated the bioavailability and persistence of the human PPARα ligand clofibric acid (CFA) in carp, together with various relevant endpoints, at a concentration similar to therapeutic levels in humans (20 mg/L) and for an environmentally relevant concentration (4 μg/L). Exposure to pharmacologically-relevant concentrations of CFA resulted in increased transcript levels of a number of known PPARα target genes together with increased acyl-coA oxidase (Acox1) activity, supporting stimulation of lipid metabolism pathways in carp which are known to be similarly activated in mammals. Although Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase (Sod1) activity was not affected, mRNA levels of several biotransformation genes were also increased, paralleling previous reports in mammals and indicating a potential role in hepatic detoxification for PPARα in carp. Importantly, transcription of some of these genes (and Acox1 activity) were affected at exposure concentrations comparable with those reported in effluent discharges. Collectively, these data suggest that CFA is pharmacologically active in carp and has the potential to invoke PPARα-related responses in fish exposed in the environment, particularly considering that CFA may represent just one of a number of PPAR-active compounds present to which wild fish may be exposed. PMID:25749508

  20. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in Africa: a review of environmental levels.

    PubMed

    Gioia, Rosalinda; Akindele, Abidemi James; Adebusoye, Sunday Adekunle; Asante, Kwadwo Ansong; Tanabe, Shinsuke; Buekens, Alfons; Sasco, Annie J

    2014-05-01

    Several studies have shown an increase in PCB sources in Africa due to leakage and wrongly disposed transformers, continuing import of e-waste from countries of the North, shipwreck, and biomass burning. Techniques used in the recycling of waste such as melting and open burning to recover precious metals make PCBs contained in waste and other semivolatile organic substances prone to volatilization, which has resulted in an increase of PCB levels in air, blood, breast milk, and fish in several regions of Africa. Consequences for workers performing these activities without adequate measures of protection could result in adverse human health effects. Recent biodegradation studies in Africa have revealed the existence of exotic bacterial strains exhibiting unique and unusual PCB metabolic capability in terms of array of congeners that can serve as carbon source and diversity of congeners attacked, marking considerable progress in the development of effective bioremediation strategies for PCB-contaminated matrices such as sediments and soils in tropical regions. Action must be taken to find and deal with the major African sources of these pollutants. The precise sources of the PCB plume should be pinned down and used to complete the pollutant inventories of African countries. These nations must then be helped to safely dispose of the potentially dangerous chemicals. PMID:23636593

  1. Environmental correlates of infant blood lead levels in Boston.

    PubMed

    Rabinowitz, M; Leviton, A; Needleman, H; Bellinger, D; Waternaux, C

    1985-10-01

    From a blood lead survey of 11,837 births, 249 newborns were enrolled in a 2-year, longitudinal study. Their blood leads (PbB) were measured semiannually, and their homes were visited for repeated collections of dust, soil, indoor air, tap water, and paint. Recent refinishing activity and the sizes of nearby streets were recorded. Overall mean PbB was 7.2 micrograms/dl (SD = 5.3) at birth. PbB did not vary systematically with age. Each subject's average postnatal PbB correlated highly with the amount of lead in dust (r = 0.4, P less than 0.0001) and soil (r = 0.3, P less than 0.001), and with the lead in paint (r = 0.2, P less than 0.01). Dust, soil and air lead levels correlated with one another. Refinishing activity in the presence of lead paint was associated with elevations of PbB. Water lead, proximate traffic, weight of recovered dust, race, maternal age and education, and sex were not predictive of PbB. Multivariate models of PbB were constructed that become increasingly predictive with age (r2 = 20 to 37%). Indoor dust lead, lead in soil, refinishing activity, and season were the independent variables. PMID:4076115

  2. Developing a Successful State-Level Environmental Education Organization: A Nationwide Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smaldone, David; Dey, Shannon E.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to conduct a nationwide assessment of state-level environmental education (EE) organizations to determine the components that are essential to the establishment and success of these organizations. E-mail surveys were used to collect data from North American Association for Environmental Education state affiliates, and…

  3. The repair of environmentally relevant DNA double strand breaks caused by high linear energy transfer irradiation--no simple task.

    PubMed

    Moore, Shaun; Stanley, Fintan K T; Goodarzi, Aaron A

    2014-05-01

    High linear energy transfer (LET) ionising radiation (IR) such as radon-derived alpha particles and high mass, high energy (HZE) particles of cosmic radiation are the predominant forms of IR to which humanity is exposed throughout life. High-LET forms of IR are established carcinogens relevant to human cancer, and their potent mutagenicity is believed, in part, to be due to a greater incidence of clustered DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) and associated lesions, as ionization events occur within a more confined genomic space. The repair of such DNA damage is now well-documented to occur with slower kinetics relative to that induced by low-LET IR, and to be more reliant upon homology-directed repair pathways. Underlying these phenomena is the relative inability of non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ) to adequately resolve high-LET IR-induced DSBs. Current findings suggest that the functionality of the DNA-dependent protein kinase (DNA-PK), comprised of the Ku70-Ku80 heterodimer and the DNA-PK catalytic subunit (DNA-PKcs), is particularly perturbed by high-LET IR-induced clustered DSBs, rendering DNA-PK dependent NHEJ less relevant to resolving these lesions. By contrast, the NHEJ-associated DNA processing endonuclease Artemis shows a greater relevance to high-LET IR-induced DSB repair. Here, we will review the cellular response to high-LET irradiation, the implications of the chronic, low-dose modality of this exposure and molecular pathways that respond to high-LET irradiation induced DSBs, with particular emphasis on NHEJ factors. PMID:24565812

  4. Applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARs) for remedial actions at the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant: A compendium of environmental laws and guidance

    SciTech Connect

    Etnier, E.L.; Eaton, L.A. )

    1992-03-01

    Section 121 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) of 1980 specifies that remedial actions for cleanup of hazardous substances found at sites placed on the National Priorities List (NPL) by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must comply with applicable or relevant and appropriate requirements (ARARs) or standards under federal and state environmental laws. To date, the US Department of Energy (DOE) Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP) has not been on the NPL. Although DOE and EPA have entered into an Administrative Consent Order (ACO), the prime regulatory authority for cleanup at PGDP will be the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). This report supplies a preliminary list of available federal and state ARARs that might be considered for remedial response at PGDP in the event that the plant becomes included on the NPL or the ACO is modified to include CERCLA cleanup. A description of the terms applicable'' and relevant and appropriate'' is provided, as well as definitions of chemical-, location-, and action-specific ARARS. ARARs promulgated by the federal government and by the state of Kentucky are listed in tables. In addition, the major provisions of RCRA, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and other acts, as they apply to hazardous and radioactive waste cleanup, are discussed.

  5. OCCURRENCE OF HIGH-LEVEL AMINOGLYCOSIDE RESISTANCE IN ENVIRONMENTAL ISOLATES OF ENTEROCOCCI

    EPA Science Inventory

    High-level resistance fo aminoglycosides was observed in environmental isolates of enterococci. Various aquatic habitats, including agricultural runoff, creeks, rivers, wastewater, and wells, were analyzed. Strains of Enterococcus faecalis, e.faecium, E. gallinarum, and other Ent...

  6. The Delivery System of Environmental Education at the Tertiary Level in the Asia-Pacific Region.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sato, Masahisa; Bhandari, Bishnu; Abe, Osamu

    2001-01-01

    Analyzes the delivery system of environmental education at the tertiary level in relation to higher education attendance rate. Describes the characteristics of the delivery system in countries such as China, India, Australia, Japan, South Korea, and Indonesia. (Author/MM)

  7. Level 1 environmental assessment of cupola emissions at the Tioga Foundry

    SciTech Connect

    Menzies, K.T.; Adams, J.W.; Thrun, K.E.

    1984-01-01

    Sampling and analysis was undertaken to characterize and quantify particulate, organic and inorganic chemical concentrations in gaseous effluents downstream of an afterburner (AFB) or stack air addition (SAA) system in a cupola at the Tioga Casting Company in Owego, New York. The US Environmental Protection Agency/Industrial Environmental Research Laboratory (EPA/IERL) Level 1 environmental assessment procedures were used to determine if the level of pollutants present differed when using the AFB versus the SAA control device for reduction of carbon monoxide (CO) concentrations.

  8. Impact of TiO₂ and ZnO nanoparticles at predicted environmentally relevant concentrations on ammonia-oxidizing bacteria cultures under ammonia oxidation.

    PubMed

    Luo, Zhuanxi; Qiu, Zhaozheng; Chen, Zheng; Du Laing, Gijs; Liu, Aifen; Yan, Changzhou

    2015-02-01

    Increased application of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide nanoparticles (nano-TiO2 and nano-ZnO) raises concerns related to their environmental impacts. The effects that such nanoparticles have on environmental processes and the bacteria that carry them out are largely unknown. In this study, ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) enrichment cultures, grown from surface sediments taken from an estuary wetland in Fujian Province, China, were spiked with nano-TiO2 and nano-ZnO (with an average size of 32 and 43 nm, respectively) at predicted environmentally relevant concentrations (≤2 mg L(-1)) to determine their impacts on ammonia oxidation and the mechanisms involved. Results showed that higher nano-TiO2 concentrations significantly inhibited ammonia oxidation in enrichment cultures. It is noteworthy that the average ammonia oxidation rate was significantly correlated to the Shannon index, the Simpson's index, and AOB abundance. This suggested that ammonia oxidation inhibition primarily resulted from a reduction of AOB biodiversity and abundance. However, AOB biodiversity and abundance as well as the average ammonia oxidation rate were not inhibited by nano-ZnO at predicted environmentally relevant concentrations. Accordingly, an insignificant correlation was established between biodiversity and abundance of the AOB amoA gene and the average ammonia oxidation rate under nano-ZnO treatments. AOB present in samples belonged to the β-Proteobacteria class with an affinity close to Nitrosospira and Nitrosomonas genera. This suggested that identified impacts of nano-TiO2 and nano-ZnO on ammonia oxidation processes can be extrapolated to some extent to natural aquatic environments. Complex impacts on AOB may result from different nanomaterials present in aquatic environments at various ambient conditions. Further investigation on how and to what extent different nanomaterials influence AOB diversity and abundance and their subsequent ammonia oxidation processes is therefore

  9. Estimated pKa values for the environmentally relevant C1 through C8 perfluorinated sulfonic acid isomers.

    PubMed

    Rayne, Sierra; Forest, Kaya

    2016-10-14

    In order to estimate isomer-specific acidity constants (pKa) for the perfluorinated sulfonic acid (PFSA) environmental contaminants, the parameterization method 6 (PM6) pKa prediction method was extensively validated against a wide range of carbon oxyacids and related sulfonic/sulfinic acids. Excellent pKa prediction performance was observed for the carbon oxyacids using the PM6 method, but this approach was found to have a severe positive bias for sulfonic/sulfinic acids. To overcome this obstacle, a correlation was developed between non-adjusted PM6 pKa values and the corresponding experimentally obtained/estimated acidity constants for a range of representative alkyl, aryl and halogen-substituted sulfonic acids. Application of this correction to the PM6 values allows for extension of this computational method to a new acid functional group. When used to estimate isomer-specific pKa values for the C1 through C8 PFSAs, the modified PM6 approach suggests an adjusted pKa range from -5.3 to -9.0, indicating that all members of this class of well-known environmental contaminants will be effectively completely dissociated in aquatic systems. PMID:27389973

  10. A relevant exposure to a food matrix contaminated environmentally by polychlorinated biphenyls induces liver and brain disruption in rats.

    PubMed

    Ounnas, Fayçal; Privé, Florence; Lamarche, Fréderic; Salen, Patricia; Favier-Hininger, Isabelle; Marchand, Philippe; Le Bizec, Bruno; Venisseau, Anais; Batandier, Cécile; Fontaine, Eric; de Lorgeril, Michel; Demeilliers, Christine

    2016-10-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are ubiquitous environmental contaminants present in dietary fats. Most studies evaluating PCB effects have been conducted with a single compound or a mixture of PCBs given as a single acute dose. The purpose of this study was to evaluate in vivo PCB toxicity in a realistic model of exposure: a low daily dose of PCBs (twice the tolerable daily intake (TDI)), chronically administered (8 weeks) to rats in contaminated goat milk. Liver and brain PCB toxicities were investigated by evaluating oxidative stress status and mitochondrial function. PCB toxicity in the liver was also estimated by transaminase enzymatic activity. This study shows that even at low doses, chronic PCB exposure resulted in a statistically significant reduction of mitochondrial function in liver and brain. In the liver, oxygen consumption in the condition of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production (state 3) decreased by 22-29% (p < 0.01), according to the respiratory substrates. In the brain, respiratory chain complexes II and III were reduced by 24% and 39%, respectively (p < 0.005). The exposed rats presented higher lipid peroxidation status (+20%, p < 0.05) and transaminase activity (+30%, p < 0.05) in the blood. Thus, our study showed that exposure of rats to a daily realistic dose of PCBs (twice the TDI in a food complex mixture of environmental origin) resulted in multiple disruptions in the liver and brain. PMID:27421104

  11. Xanthan Exopolysaccharide: Cu(2+) Complexes Affected from the pH-Dependent Conformational State; Implications for Environmentally Relevant Biopolymers.

    PubMed

    Causse, Benjamin; Spadini, Lorenzo; Sarret, Géraldine; Faure, Adeline; Travelet, Christophe; Madern, Dominique; Delolme, Cécile

    2016-04-01

    The conformational impact of environmental biopolymers on metal sorption was studied through Cu sorption on xanthan. The apparent Cu(2+) complexation constant (logK; Cu(2+) + L(-) ↔ CuL(+)) decreased from 2.9 ± 0.1 at pH 3.5 to 2.5 ± 0.1 at pH 5.5 (ionic strength I = 0.1). This behavior is in apparent contradiction with basic thermodynamics, as usually the higher the pH the more cations bind. Our combined titration, circular dichroism and dynamic light scattering study indicated that the change observed in Cu bond strength relates to a conformational change of the structure of xanthan, which generates more chelating sites at pH 3.5 than at pH 5.5. This hypothesis was validated by the fact that the Cu sorption constants on xanthan were always higher than those measured on a mixture of pyruvic and glucuronic acids (logK = 2.2), which are the two constitutive ligands present in the xanthan monomer. This study shows the role of the structural conformation of natural biopolymers in metal bond strength. This finding may help to better predict the fate of Cu and other metals in acidic environmental settings such as aquatic media affected by acid mine drainage, as well as peats and acidic soils, and to better define optimal conditions for bioremediation processes. PMID:26824427

  12. The relevance of large scale environmental research infrastructures from the point of view of Ethics: the case of EMSO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favali, Paolo; Beranzoli, Laura; Best, Mairi; Franceschini, PierLuigi; Materia, Paola; Peppoloni, Silvia; Picard, John

    2014-05-01

    EMSO (European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and Water Column Observatory) is a large-scale European Research Infrastructure (RI). It is a geographically distributed infrastructure composed of several deep-seafloor and water-column observatories, which will be deployed at key sites in European waters, spanning from the Arctic, through the Atlantic and Mediterranean, to the Black Sea, with the basic scientific objective of real-time, long-term monitoring of environmental processes related to the interaction between the geosphere, biosphere and hydrosphere. EMSO is one of the environmental RIs on the ESFRI roadmap. The ESRFI Roadmap identifies new RIs of pan-European importance that correspond to the long term needs of European research communities. EMSO will be the sub-sea segment of the EU's large-scale Earth Observation program, Copernicus (previously known as GMES - Global Monitoring for Environment and Security) and will significantly enhance the observational capabilities of European member states. An open data policy compliant with the recommendations being developed within the GEOSS initiative (Global Earth Observation System of Systems) will allow for shared use of the infrastructure and the exchange of scientific information and knowledge. The processes that occur in the oceans have a direct impact on human societies, therefore it is crucial to improve our understanding of how they operate and interact. To encompass the breadth of these major processes, sustained and integrated observations are required that appreciate the interconnectedness of atmospheric, surface ocean, biological pump, deep-sea, and solid-Earth dynamics and that can address: • natural and anthropogenic change; • interactions between ecosystem services, biodiversity, biogeochemistry, physics, and climate; • impacts of exploration and extraction of energy, minerals, and living resources; • geo-hazard early warning capability for earthquakes, tsunamis, gas-hydrate release, and slope

  13. Relevance of Education and Intelligence at the National Level for Health: The Case of HIV and AIDS

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rindermann, Heiner; Meisenberg, Gerhard

    2009-01-01

    Studies at the individual level have shown a negative effect of education and intelligence on risky behavior. The same has been demonstrated for risky sexual behavior and for HIV-infection rates in sub-Saharan Africa. In path analyses at the country data level, cognitive abilities (seen as depending on education) show a strong negative effect on…

  14. The chronic toxicity of bisphenol A to Caenorhabditis elegans after long-term exposure at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Dong; Yang, Jie; Li, Hui; Cui, Changzheng; Yu, Yunjiang; Liu, Yongdi; Lin, Kuangfei

    2016-07-01

    To investigate biological effects of bisphenol A (BPA) over the long term, the model animal Caenorhabditis elegans was used to conduct the chronic exposure. C. elegans were exposed to BPA (0.0001-10 μM) from L4 larvae to day-10 adult in the present chronic toxicity assay system. Multiple endpoints at the physiological (growth, locomotion behaviors and lifespan), biochemical (lipofuscin accumulation), molecular (stress-related genes expressions), and population (population size) levels were examined. At the physiological level, BPA exposure induced significant negative effects on the indicators. Among the endpoints, head thrash was most sensitive and the detection limit was 0.001 μM. At the biochemical level, BPA exposure induced no significant effects on lipofuscin accumulation. At the molecular level, BPA induced strong stress responses in vivo. At the population level, the population size was significantly decreased in the treatment groups from 0.1 to 10 μM. Compared to the previous short-term toxicity evaluation, long-term exposure to BPA induced a more obvious response at the same concentration, and the phenomenon might be due to cumulative toxic effects. By the Pearson correlation analyses, cep-1 was speculated to act as an important role in BPA-induced chronic toxicity on C. elegans. PMID:27085314

  15. Annotated bibliography of environmentally relevant investigations of uranium mining and milling in the Grants Mineral Belt, northwestern New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Otton, James K.

    2011-01-01

    Studies of the natural environment in the Grants Mineral Belt in northwestern New Mexico have been conducted since the 1930s; however, few such investigations predate uranium mining and milling operations, which began in the early 1950s. This report provides an annotated bibliography of reports that describe the hydrology and geochemistry of groundwaters and surface waters and the geochemistry of soils and sediments in the Grants Mineral Belt and contiguous areas. The reports referenced and discussed provide a large volume of information about the environmental conditions in the area after mining started. Data presented in many of these studies, if evaluated carefully, may provide much basic information about the baseline conditions that existed over large parts of the Grants Mineral Belt prior to mining. Other data may provide information that can direct new work in efforts to discriminate between baseline conditions and the effects of the mining and milling on the natural environment.

  16. A review of occupational safety and health issues relevant to the environmental restoration program: Selected case histories and associated issues

    SciTech Connect

    Lesperance, A.M.; Siegel, M.R.; McKinney, M.D.

    1992-10-01

    This report describes a study conducted by Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) to determine the impact of occupational safety and health (OSH) issues on the environmental restoration process at US Department of Energy sites. PNL selected three remediation projects to study: (1) the 618-9 Burial Ground Expedited Removal Action at the Hanford Site, (2) the Chemical Consolidation Interim Response Action at the Weldon Spring Site, (3) and the 200 West Area Carbon Tetrachloride Expedited Removal Action and VOC-Arid Integration Demonstration at the Hanford Site. The first two case studies involve sites where a remediation activity has been complete. The third case study involves a remediation activity in its early stages of development. This study identifies OSH issues related to actual cleanup, time, documentation, training, and technology development. These issues need to be considered by DOE before making long-term planning efforts. Section 4.0 of this report describes recommendations for addressing these issues.

  17. Environmentally Relevant Concentrations of the Flame Retardant Tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) Phosphate Inhibit Growth of Female Zebrafish and Decrease Fecundity.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Ya; Ma, Xufa; Su, Guanyong; Yu, Liqin; Letcher, Robert J; Hou, Jie; Yu, Hongxia; Giesy, John P; Liu, Chunsheng

    2015-12-15

    Bioconcentrations of tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TDCIPP) in brain, gonad, and liver as well as effects on fecundity and development of zebrafish (Danio rerio) were determined. Zebrafish (1-month old) were exposed to environmentally relevant concentrations of 29 ± 2.1, 600 ± 21, or 6300 ± 130 ng TDCIPP/L. After 120 days of exposure, TDCIPP accumulated in the brain, gonad, and liver with bioconcentration factors of 460, 38, and 87 in females and 26, 55, and 110 in males, respectively. TDCIPP accumulated to a greater extent in brains of females than those of males. Exposure to 6300 ± 130 ng TDCIPP/L resulted in significantly (P < 0.05) fewer eggs being produced, but the histology of the gonad, plasma concentrations of estradiol and 11-ketotestosterone, and expression of genes involved in hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal-liver axis were not significantly (P > 0.05) different between individuals exposed to TDCIPP and the unexposed control fish. Exposure to TDCIPP resulted in shorter body length, lighter body mass, and lower gonadal-somatic index in females. These effects were possibly due to down-regulation of expression of genes along the growth hormone/insulin-like growth factor (GH/IGF) axis. Correlations between the production of eggs and developmental parameters or expression of genes along the GH/IGF axis further suggested that environmentally relevant concentrations of TDCIPP could have adverse effects on reproduction, possibly due to the inhibition of the growth of females. PMID:26512412

  18. IERL-RTP PROCEDURES MANUAL: LEVEL 1 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT BIOLOGICAL TESTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The manual gives revised procedures for Level 1 environmental assessment biological tests, and supersedes the first edition, EPA-600/7-77-043 (NTIS No. PB 268484), published in April 1977. The revised biological procedures complement the Level 1 chemical and physical procedures p...

  19. Immunotoxicity of environmentally relevant mixtures of polychlorinated aromatic hydrocarbons with methyl mercury on rat lymphocytes in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    Omara, F.O.; Brochu, C.; Flipo, D.; Denizeau, F.; Fournier, M.

    1997-03-01

    The immunosuppressive effects of methyl mercury (MHg), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs), and dibenzofurans (PCDFs) are well established at higher exposure levels but unclear at low exposure levels. The authors exposed Fischer 344 rat splenocytes, thymocytes, and peripheral blood lymphocytes in vitro for 72 h to MHg of three PCDDs and two PCDFs PCB mixtures, or combinations of MHg/PCB/PCDD/PCDF mixtures Mitogenic responses of lymphocytes to concanavalin A, phytohemagglutinin, or lipopolysaccharide/dextran sulfate were determined by {sup 3}H-thymidine uptake; cytotoxicity and intracellular Ca{sup 2+} were determined by flow cytometry. Methylmercury mixtures with 2 {micro}g/ml MHg decreased the viability of splenocytes to 57 and 40% at 4 and 24 h, respectively. Basal intracellular calcium ion levels were unaffected by the treatments. Methylmercury suppressed the responses of lymphocytes to T and B cell mitogens. All combinations of MHg/PCB/PCDD/PCDF mixtures decreased mitogenic responses to levels similar to those to MHg alone. In contrast, PCB and PCDD/PCDF mixtures did not suppress but augmented responses of splenocytes and peripheral blood lymphocytes to T cell mitogens. Overall, no interactive toxicity was observed with MHg/PCB/PCDD/PCDF mixtures on cytotoxicity and lymphocyte mitogenic responses. Therefore, MHg may pose a greater threat than organochlorines to the mammalian immune system.

  20. Environmental levels of Linear alkylbenzene Sulfonates (LAS) in sediments from the Tagus estuary (Portugal): environmental implications.

    PubMed

    Hampel, M; Canário, J; Branco, V; Vale, C; Blasco, J

    2009-02-01

    Sediments from the Tagus estuary (Portugal) were collected at 40 stations in July and December 2004. Total LAS concentrations ranged between 0.03 and 17.76 mg LAS.kg(-1) dry weight in July, and between 0.09 and 9.57 mg LAS.kg(-1) in December. Highest LAS concentrations were found at the upper northern part of the estuary, coincident with the localisation of an important waste water treatment station. According to the Predicted No Effect Concentration (PNEC) of 8.1 mg.kg(-1) derived for this compound, Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA) identified a hazard for the ecosystem at the station with the highest LAS concentration, and similar results are obtained by Equilibrium Partitioning Method (EPM). Nevertheless, LAS concentrations decreased significantly between samplings in the stations with the highest LAS concentrations in July, whereas increased LAS concentrations at adjacent stations were found in December. In the remaining stations, LAS concentrations were up to three orders of magnitude lower, representing no hazard for the sediment community. PMID:18228153

  1. The clinical relevance of rising CA-125 levels within the normal range in patients with uterine papillary serous cancer.

    PubMed

    Frimer, Marina; Hou, June Y; McAndrew, Thomas C; Goldberg, Gary L; Shahabi, Shohreh

    2013-04-01

    The utility of cancer antigen 125 (CA-125) levels as an adjunct method of monitoring patients with uterine papillary serous carcinoma (UPSC) or endometrial serous carcinoma after surgery and adjuvant treatment has been reported. Our goal was to determine the significance of rising CA-125 levels within the normal range in these patients in the posttreatment surveillance setting. All patients with UPSC who underwent surgical staging and had preoperative CA-125 measurement from 1999 to 2008 were included in this analysis. Information was extracted from records to assess the changes in CA-125 values with clinical and/or radiographic detection of recurrence. Of the 56 evaluable patients, 23 (41%) recurred. Of the 23 patients that recurred, 11 had serial CA-125 levels measured in remission. Elevated CA-125 levels at diagnosis were significantly associated with disease recurrence and advanced stage (P = .01, P = .001, respectively). The rise in CA-125 by 10 U/mL in the normal range and ≥ 15 U/mL were associated with disease recurrence (P < .001, P < .001, respectively). In multivariate analysis, only CA-125 level ≥ 15 U/mL was significantly associated with worse progression-free survival. In this small cohort of patients with recurrent UPSC after remission, surveillance of CA-125 levels may have a role in disease surveillance and management. PMID:22995987

  2. The Clinical Relevance of Rising CA-125 Levels Within the Normal Range in Patients With Uterine Papillary Serous Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Frimer, Marina; Hou, June Y.; McAndrew, Thomas C.; Goldberg, Gary L.; Shahabi, Shohreh

    2013-01-01

    The utility of cancer antigen 125 (CA-125) levels as an adjunct method of monitoring patients with uterine papillary serous carcinoma (UPSC) or endometrial serous carcinoma after surgery and adjuvant treatment has been reported. Our goal was to determine the significance of rising CA-125 levels within the normal range in these patients in the posttreatment surveillance setting. All patients with UPSC who underwent surgical staging and had preoperative CA-125 measurement from 1999 to 2008 were included in this analysis. Information was extracted from records to assess the changes in CA-125 values with clinical and/or radiographic detection of recurrence. Of the 56 evaluable patients, 23 (41%) recurred. Of the 23 patients that recurred, 11 had serial CA-125 levels measured in remission. Elevated CA-125 levels at diagnosis were significantly associated with disease recurrence and advanced stage (P = .01, P = .001, respectively). The rise in CA-125 by 10 U/mL in the normal range and ≥15 U/mL were associated with disease recurrence (P < .001, P < .001, respectively). In multivariate analysis, only CA-125 level ≥15 U/mL was significantly associated with worse progression-free survival. In this small cohort of patients with recurrent UPSC after remission, surveillance of CA-125 levels may have a role in disease surveillance and management. PMID:22995987

  3. Technical approach to finalizing sensible soil cleanup levels at the Fernald Environmental Management Project

    SciTech Connect

    Carr, D.; Hertel, B.; Jewett, M.; Janke, R.; Conner, B.

    1996-02-01

    The remedial strategy for addressing contaminated environmental media was recently finalized for the US Department of Energy`s (DOE) Fernald Environmental Management Project (FEMP) following almost 10 years of detailed technical analysis. The FEMP represents one of the first major nuclear facilities to successfully complete the Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study (RI/FS) phase of the environmental restoration process. A critical element of this success was the establishment of sensible cleanup levels for contaminated soil and groundwater both on and off the FEMP property. These cleanup levels were derived based upon a strict application of Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) regulations and guidance, coupled with positive input from the regulatory agencies and the local community regarding projected future land uses for the site. The approach for establishing the cleanup levels was based upon a Feasibility Study (FS) strategy that examined a bounding range of viable future land uses for the site. Within each land use, the cost and technical implications of a range of health-protective cleanup levels for the environmental media were analyzed. Technical considerations in driving these cleanup levels included: direct exposure routes to viable human receptors; cross- media impacts to air, surface water, and groundwater; technical practicality of attaining the levels; volume of affected media; impact to sensitive environmental receptors or ecosystems; and cost. This paper will discuss the technical approach used to support the finalization of the cleanup levels for the site. The final cleanup levels provide the last remaining significant piece to the puzzle of establishing a final site-wide remedial strategy for the FEMP, and positions the facility for the expedient completion of site-wide remedial activities.

  4. [Why is environmental adaptation and acculturation relevant when seeking to conduct qualitative research in drug dependency services?].

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, Dione Viégas de Almeida; de Azevedo, Renata Cruz Soares; Turato, Egberto Ribeiro

    2013-06-01

    This study conducted at the Outpatient Service of Psychoactive Substances, in the University General Hospital of Campinas, sought to report on an experience of proactive participation to study the life experience of chemically dependent patients attended in a specialized university service. These observations emerged from the researcher's experiences in the environmental adaptation and acculturation period, namely through the researcher insertion in the outpatient service, during the preliminary data collection for qualitative research. This experience was important as it enabled clearer comprehension of the psycho-cultural universe of the population attended and how the relation professional-patient is conducted, broadening the knowledge of the field where the research was later carried out. From this initial entry in the field, it was possible to define the subject-matter and the population being studied more clearly, adapting to the needs and the reality observed in that service, as well as to reflect on the research method that serve to better understand the issues raised, and even draw up a roadmap for future interviews in the study. It was concluded that this preliminary stage is very useful as standard practice in new studies using the same methodology in clinical settings. PMID:23752548

  5. The interaction of actinide and lanthanide ions with hemoglobin and its relevance to human and environmental toxicology.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Amit; Ali, Manjoor; Ningthoujam, Raghumani S; Gaikwad, Pallavi; Kumar, Mukesh; Nath, Bimalendu B; Pandey, Badri N

    2016-04-15

    Due to increasing use of lanthanides/actinides in nuclear and civil applications, understanding the impact of these metal ions on human health and environment is a growing concern. Hemoglobin (Hb), which occurs in all the kingdom of living organism, is the most abundant protein in human blood. In present study, effect of lanthanides and actinides [thorium: Th(IV), uranium: U(VI), lanthanum: La(III), cerium: Ce(III) and (IV)] on the structure and function of Hb has been investigated. Results showed that these metal ions, except Ce(IV) interacted with carbonyl and amide groups of Hb, which resulted in the loss of its alpha-helix conformation. However, beyond 75μM, these ions affected heme moiety. Metal-heme interaction was found to affect oxygen-binding of Hb, which seems to be governed by their closeness with the charge-to-ionic-radius ratio of iron(III). Consistently, Ce(IV) being closest to iron(III), exhibited a greater effect on heme. Binding constant and binding stoichiometry of Th(IV) were higher than that of U(VI). Experiments using aquatic midge Chironomus (possessing human homologous Hb) and human blood, further validated metal-Hb interaction and associated toxicity. Thus, present study provides a biochemical basis to understand the actinide/lanthanide-induced interference in heme, which may have significant implications for the medical and environmental management of lanthanides/actinides toxicity. PMID:26799219

  6. Bringing Sharper Focus to Environmental Education at the State Level in the Reauthorization of the National Environmental Education Act.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lefebvre, Guy N.

    The National Environmental Education Act became law on November 16, 1990. The major sections of this law establish a national environmental education office, an environmental education and training program, environmental education grants, environmental internships and fellowships, environmental education awards, and an environmental education…

  7. High serum levels of soluble CD40-L in patients with undifferentiated nasopharyngeal carcinoma: pathogenic and clinical relevance

    PubMed Central

    Caggiari, Laura; Guidoboni, Massimo; Vaccher, Emanuela; Barzan, Luigi; Franchin, Giovanni; Gloghini, Annunziata; Martorelli, Debora; Zancai, Paola; Bortolin, Maria Teresa; Mazzucato, Mario; Serraino, Diego; Carbone, Antonino; De Paoli, Paolo; Dolcetti, Riccardo

    2007-01-01

    Background Engagement of CD40 promotes survival of undifferentiated nasopharyngeal carcinoma (UNPC) cells and similar effects are induced by the EBV oncoprotein LMP-1 that is expressed in a fraction of cases. Considering that CD40 may be activated also by the soluble isoform of CD40L (sCD40L), we investigated the serum levels of sCD40L in a series of 61 UNPC patients from Italy, a non-endemic area for this disease. Results At diagnosis, serum samples of UNPC patients contained significantly higher levels of sCD40L than age-matched healthy controls (p < 0.001). High levels of sCD40L (i.e., >18 ng/ml) were more frequently found in patients <40 years of age (p = 0.03) and with distant metastases at presentation (p = 0.03). Serum levels of sCD40L were inversely associated with the expression of the EBV oncoprotein LMP-1 (p = 0.03), which mimics a constitutively activated CD40. The amount of sCD40L decreased in a fraction of patients treated with local radiotherapy alone. Moreover, CD40L+ lymphoid cells admixed to neoplastic UNPC cells were detected in cases with high serum levels of sCD40L, suggesting that sCD40L is probably produced within the tumor mass. Conclusion sCD40L may contribute to CD40 activation in UNPC cells, particularly of LMP-1-negative cases, further supporting the crucial role of CD40 signalling in the pathogenesis of UNPC. sCD40L levels may be useful to identify UNPC patients with occult distant metastases at presentation. PMID:17331231

  8. Heritability of seed weight in Maritime pine, a relevant trait in the transmission of environmental maternal effects

    PubMed Central

    Zas, R; Sampedro, L

    2015-01-01

    Quantitative seed provisioning is an important life-history trait with strong effects on offspring phenotype and fitness. As for any other trait, heritability estimates are vital for understanding its evolutionary dynamics. However, being a trait in between two generations, estimating additive genetic variation of seed provisioning requires complex quantitative genetic approaches for distinguishing between true genetic and environmental maternal effects. Here, using Maritime pine as a long-lived plant model, we quantified additive genetic variation of cone and seed weight (SW) mean and SW within-individual variation. We used a powerful approach combining both half-sib analysis and parent–offspring regression using several common garden tests established in contrasting environments to separate G, E and G × E effects. Both cone weight and SW mean showed significant genetic variation but were also influenced by the maternal environment. Most of the large variation in SW mean was attributable to additive genetic effects (h2=0.55–0.74). SW showed no apparent G × E interaction, particularly when accounting for cone weight covariation, suggesting that the maternal genotypes actively control the SW mean irrespective of the amount of resources allocated to cones. Within-individual variation in SW was low (12%) relative to between-individual variation (88%), and showed no genetic variation but was largely affected by the maternal environment, with greater variation in the less favourable sites for pine growth. In summary, results were very consistent between the parental and the offspring common garden tests, and clearly indicated heritable genetic variation for SW mean but not for within-individual variation in SW. PMID:25160045

  9. Characterization of Silver Nanoparticles under Environmentally Relevant Conditions Using Asymmetrical Flow Field-Flow Fractionation (AF4)

    PubMed Central

    Jang, Min-Hee; Lee, Seungho; Hwang, Yu Sik

    2015-01-01

    The development of methods to monitor manufactured nanomaterials in the environment is one of the crucial areas for the assessment of their risk. More specifically, particle size analysis is a key element, because many properties of nanomaterial are size dependent. The sizing of nanomaterials in real environments is challenging due to their heterogeneity and reactivity with other environmental components. In this study, the fractionation and characterization of a mixture of polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated silver nanoparticles (PVP-AgNPs) of three different sizes were investigated using asymmetrical flow field-flow fractionation (AF4) coupled with UV-Vis spectrophotometry. In particular, the effects of electrolyte composition and natural organic matter (NOM) on the particle size and stability were evaluated. The fractogram peaks (i.e., stability) of three different AgNPs decreased in the presence of both 10 mM NaCl and 10mM CaCl2, while increased with increasing concentration of humic acid (HA). In addition, the hydrodynamic diameters of AgNPs in both electrolytes slightly increased with an increase of HA concentration, suggesting the adsorption (coating) of HA onto the particle surface. It is also interesting to note that an increase in the particle size depended on the types of electrolyte, which could be explained by the conformational characteristics of the adsorbed HA layers. Consistent these results, AgNPs suspended in lake water containing relatively high concentration of organic carbon (TOC) showed higher particle stability and larger particle size (i.e., by approximately 4nm) than those in river water. In conclusion, the application of AF4 coupled with highly sensitive detectors could be a powerful method to characterize nanoparticles in natural waters. PMID:26575993

  10. Characterization of Silver Nanoparticles under Environmentally Relevant Conditions Using Asymmetrical Flow Field-Flow Fractionation (AF4).

    PubMed

    Jang, Min-Hee; Lee, Seungho; Hwang, Yu Sik

    2015-01-01

    The development of methods to monitor manufactured nanomaterials in the environment is one of the crucial areas for the assessment of their risk. More specifically, particle size analysis is a key element, because many properties of nanomaterial are size dependent. The sizing of nanomaterials in real environments is challenging due to their heterogeneity and reactivity with other environmental components. In this study, the fractionation and characterization of a mixture of polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated silver nanoparticles (PVP-AgNPs) of three different sizes were investigated using asymmetrical flow field-flow fractionation (AF4) coupled with UV-Vis spectrophotometry. In particular, the effects of electrolyte composition and natural organic matter (NOM) on the particle size and stability were evaluated. The fractogram peaks (i.e., stability) of three different AgNPs decreased in the presence of both 10 mM NaCl and 10 mM CaCl2, while increased with increasing concentration of humic acid (HA). In addition, the hydrodynamic diameters of AgNPs in both electrolytes slightly increased with an increase of HA concentration, suggesting the adsorption (coating) of HA onto the particle surface. It is also interesting to note that an increase in the particle size depended on the types of electrolyte, which could be explained by the conformational characteristics of the adsorbed HA layers. Consistent these results, AgNPs suspended in lake water containing relatively high concentration of organic carbon (TOC) showed higher particle stability and larger particle size (i.e., by approximately 4 nm) than those in river water. In conclusion, the application of AF4 coupled with highly sensitive detectors could be a powerful method to characterize nanoparticles in natural waters. PMID:26575993

  11. Interferometric Testbed for Nanometer Level Stabilization of Environmental Motion Over Long Timescales

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Numata, Kenji; Camp, Jordan

    2008-01-01

    We developed an interferometric testbed to stabilize environmental motions over timescales of several hours and a lengthscale of 1m. Typically, thermal and seismic motions on the ground are larger than 1 micron over these scales, affecting the precision of more sensitive measurements. To suppress such motions, we built an active stabilization system composed of interferometric sensors, a hexapod actuator, and a frequency stabilized laser. With this stabilized testbed, environmental motions were suppressed down to nm level. This system will allow us to perform sensitive measurements, such as ground testing of LISA (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna), in the presence of environmental noise.

  12. National plan for siting high-level radioactive waste repositories and environmental assessment: Public draft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1982-02-01

    The process used to find sites suitable for disposal of high level radioactive waste is described. Existing and planned activities for screening successively smaller portions of land to identify suitable candidate sites, and for subsequently selecting one or more of these sites for permanent disposal of radioactive wastes are discussed. Environmental effects of the proposed action, including the anticipate range of field studies to characterize various land areas and reasonable alternative siting strategies, are assessed. The environmental assessment provides the basis for a finding of whether or not implementation of this plan will result in significant environmental impacts.

  13. Establishing the Biological Relevance of Dipentyl Phthalate Reductions in Fetal Rat Testosterone Production and Plasma and Testis Testosterone Levels

    EPA Science Inventory

    Phthalate esters (PEs) constitute a large class of compounds that are used for many consumer product applications. Many of the C2-C7 di-ortho PEs reduce fetal testicular hormone and gene expression levels in rats resulting in adverse effects seen later in life but it appears that...

  14. CTLA-4 in mesothelioma patients: tissue expression, body fluid levels and possible relevance as a prognostic factor.

    PubMed

    Roncella, Silvio; Laurent, Stefania; Fontana, Vincenzo; Ferro, Paola; Franceschini, Maria Cristiana; Salvi, Sandra; Varesano, Serena; Boccardo, Simona; Vigani, Antonella; Morabito, Anna; Canessa, Pier Aldo; Giannoni, Ugo; Rosenberg, Ilan; Valentino, Alessandro; Fedeli, Franco; Merlo, Domenico Franco; Ceppi, Marcello; Riggio, Salvatore; Romani, Massimo; Saverino, Daniele; Poggi, Alessandro; Pistillo, Maria Pia

    2016-08-01

    CTLA-4 function as a negative regulator of T cell-mediated immune response is well established, whereas much less is known about the immunoregulatory role of its soluble isoform (sCTLA-4). No data are available on CTLA-4 expression and prognostic impact in malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). We investigated, by immunohistochemistry, CTLA-4 expression in tumor tissues and, by ELISA, sCTLA-4 levels in sera and matched pleural effusions from 45 MPM patients. Prognostic effect of CTLA-4 expression on overall survival (OS) was assessed through Cox regression and prognostic significance expressed as death rate ratio (HR). We found that 56.0 % of MPM tissues expressed CTLA-4 with variable intensity and percentage of positive cells estimated by the immunoreactive score. sCTLA-4 levels were significantly higher in sera (S-sCTLA-4) than in pleural effusions (PE-sCTLA-4) (geometric mean ratio = 2.70, P value = 0.020). CTLA-4 expression at the tissue level was higher in the epithelioid histological subtype than in the sarcomatoid, whereas at the serum level, it was higher in the sarcomatoid subtype. A homogeneous favorable prognostic effect was found for CTLA-4 overexpression in tissue, serum and pleural effusion. Interestingly, only the PE-sCTLA-4 was found to be a statistically significant positive prognostic factor (HR = 0.37, 95 % CI = 0.18-0.77, P value = 0.007). Indeed, PE-sCTLA-4 correlated with CTLA-4 expression in tissues, whereas this latter expression showed a weak association with OS. To confirm our findings, further experimental evidences obtained from a larger cohort of MPM patients are required. However, our results would indicate a positive correlation of PE-sCTLA-4 levels and OS in MPM patients. PMID:27207606

  15. Integrated analysis of transcript-level regulation of metabolism reveals disease-relevant nodes of the human metabolic network

    PubMed Central

    Galhardo, Mafalda; Sinkkonen, Lasse; Berninger, Philipp; Lin, Jake; Sauter, Thomas; Heinäniemi, Merja

    2014-01-01

    Metabolic diseases and comorbidities represent an ever-growing epidemic where multiple cell types impact tissue homeostasis. Here, the link between the metabolic and gene regulatory networks was studied through experimental and computational analysis. Integrating gene regulation data with a human metabolic network prompted the establishment of an open-sourced web portal, IDARE (Integrated Data Nodes of Regulation), for visualizing various gene-related data in context of metabolic pathways. Motivated by increasing availability of deep sequencing studies, we obtained ChIP-seq data from widely studied human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Interestingly, we found that association of metabolic genes with multiple transcription factors (TFs) enriched disease-associated genes. To demonstrate further extensions enabled by examining these networks together, constraint-based modeling was applied to data from human preadipocyte differentiation. In parallel, data on gene expression, genome-wide ChIP-seq profiles for peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) γ, CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (CEBP) α, liver X receptor (LXR) and H3K4me3 and microRNA target identification for miR-27a, miR-29a and miR-222 were collected. Disease-relevant key nodes, including mitochondrial glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase (GPAM), were exposed from metabolic pathways predicted to change activity by focusing on association with multiple regulators. In both cell types, our analysis reveals the convergence of microRNAs and TFs within the branched chain amino acid (BCAA) metabolic pathway, possibly providing an explanation for its downregulation in obese and diabetic conditions. PMID:24198249

  16. Integrated analysis of transcript-level regulation of metabolism reveals disease-relevant nodes of the human metabolic network.

    PubMed

    Galhardo, Mafalda; Sinkkonen, Lasse; Berninger, Philipp; Lin, Jake; Sauter, Thomas; Heinäniemi, Merja

    2014-02-01

    Metabolic diseases and comorbidities represent an ever-growing epidemic where multiple cell types impact tissue homeostasis. Here, the link between the metabolic and gene regulatory networks was studied through experimental and computational analysis. Integrating gene regulation data with a human metabolic network prompted the establishment of an open-sourced web portal, IDARE (Integrated Data Nodes of Regulation), for visualizing various gene-related data in context of metabolic pathways. Motivated by increasing availability of deep sequencing studies, we obtained ChIP-seq data from widely studied human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Interestingly, we found that association of metabolic genes with multiple transcription factors (TFs) enriched disease-associated genes. To demonstrate further extensions enabled by examining these networks together, constraint-based modeling was applied to data from human preadipocyte differentiation. In parallel, data on gene expression, genome-wide ChIP-seq profiles for peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) γ, CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (CEBP) α, liver X receptor (LXR) and H3K4me3 and microRNA target identification for miR-27a, miR-29a and miR-222 were collected. Disease-relevant key nodes, including mitochondrial glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase (GPAM), were exposed from metabolic pathways predicted to change activity by focusing on association with multiple regulators. In both cell types, our analysis reveals the convergence of microRNAs and TFs within the branched chain amino acid (BCAA) metabolic pathway, possibly providing an explanation for its downregulation in obese and diabetic conditions. PMID:24198249

  17. Environmentally relevant concentrations of galaxolide (HHCB) and tonalide (AHTN) induced oxidative and genetic damage in Dreissena polymorpha.

    PubMed

    Parolini, Marco; Magni, Stefano; Traversi, Irene; Villa, Sara; Finizio, Antonio; Binelli, Andrea

    2015-03-21

    Synthetic musk compounds (SMCs) are extensively used as fragrances in several personal care products and have been recognized as emerging aquatic pollutants. Among SMCs, galaxolide (HHCB) and tonalide (AHTN) are extensively used and have been measured in aquatic ecosystems worldwide. However, their potential risk to organisms remains largely unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate whether 21-day exposures to HHCB and AHTN concentrations frequently measured in aquatic ecosystems can induce oxidative and genetic damage in Dreissena polymorpha. The lipid peroxidation (LPO) and protein carbonyl content (PCC) were measured as oxidative stress indexes, while the DNA precipitation assay and the micronucleus test (MN test) were applied to investigate genetic injuries. HHCB induced significant increases in LPO and PCC levels, while AHTN enhanced only protein carbonylation. Moreover, significant increases in DNA strand breaks were caused by exposure to the highest concentrations of HHCB and AHTN tested in the present study, but no fixed genetic damage was observed. PMID:25462865

  18. Impact of an environmental relevant concentration of 17α-ethinylestradiol on the cardiac function of bullfrog tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Salla, Raquel F; Gamero, Fernando U; Rissoli, Rafael Z; Dal-Medico, Samuel E; Castanho, Luciano Mendes; Carvalho, Cleoni dos Santos; Silva-Zacarin, Elaine C M; Kalinin, Ana L; Abdalla, Fabio C; Costa, Monica J

    2016-02-01

    This study evaluated if a concentration of 17α-ethinylestradiol (EE2 - 10 ng L(-1) for 96 h) normally found in Brazilian surface waters exerts any impact on cardiac function of bullfrog tadpoles (25 Gosner stage), Lithobates catesbeianus. During exposure, the animals' activity level (AL -% of active individuals) was monitored twice a day. Then, the in loco heart rate (f(H) - bpm) was determined, as well as the relative ventricular mass (RVM - % of body mass). Afterwards, cardiac ventricles were mounted for isometric force recordings (CS - mN mm(-2)), and determination of the cardiac pumping capacity (CPC - mN mm(-2) min(-1)). EE2 did not affect tadpoles' AL, although it resulted in a tachycardia in animals exposed to EE2 (f(H) = 66 bpm) when compared to controls (f(H) = 52 bpm), suggesting that EE2 acts directly on the cardiac muscle of tadpoles, rather than being a result of an increased cardiac demand due to a higher activity level (i.e., avoidance response). Additionally, EE2 exerted a positive inotropic response, which resulted in a higher CPC, which occurred independently of an increase in the number of myofibrils of EE2-exposed animals, since RVM remained similar between experimental groups. Thus, the increase on cardiac demand induced by the exposure to EE2 elevates considerably the animal energy expenditure, diverting a large amount of energy that tadpoles could use for their growth and development. These alterations can make amphibians more susceptible to predators and reduce the likelihood to reach reproductive stage. PMID:26539711

  19. Environmental Influences in Family Similarity in Afternoon Cortisol Levels: A Parent-Offspring Design

    PubMed Central

    Schreiber, Jane E.; Shirtcliff, Elizabeth; Van Hulle, Carol; Lemery-Chalfant, Kathryn; Klein, Marjorie H.; Kalin, Ned H.; Essex, Marilyn J.; Goldsmith, H. Hill

    2009-01-01

    Summary Modest genetic effects on morning, but not late-day, cortisol levels have been established. Environmental demands may influence basal cortisol levels later in the day. Thus, we anticipated that individuals in the same family would have similar afternoon cortisol levels to the extent that they share aspects of their environment. We examined afternoon basal cortisol levels measured across three consecutive days in mothers and fathers and in multiple offspring in two separate large, longitudinal studies. Study I involved 321 families with singletons while study II involved 233 families with twins. Modest family similarity was apparent for afternoon basal cortisol levels in both studies. Spouses’ cortisol levels were also correlated. Data from Study II demonstrated that family resemblance in afternoon cortisol was accounted for by underlying shared environmental factors but not underlying genetic factors. Shared environment accounted for 62% of the variation in twin afternoon basal cortisol levels and 14% of the variation in parent afternoon basal cortisol levels. We used pooled data from the two studies to examine whether parental depression, socioeconomic status (SES), and offspring sex and age impacted cortisol levels. Female offspring had higher cortisol levels than males, and cortisol decreased with age until about nine years of age, after which cortisol increased with age. Family similarity persisted after accounting for parental depression, SES, time of day, and offspring sex and age, which suggests that the shared family environment influences parent and offspring stress hormone levels throughout the childhood years. PMID:16997489

  20. Response of phytochelatins and their relationship with cadmium toxicity in a floating macrophyte Pistia stratiotes L. at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Wang, C; Wang, L Y; Sun, Q

    2010-02-01

    An indoor experiment was undertaken to investigate the response of phytochelatins and their relationship to cadmium toxicity in Pistia stratiotes L., a free-floating macrophyte, exposed to low concentrations of cadmium typically found in realistic environments. Cadmium concentrations of 0.01 to 0.08 microM had no toxic effects on the growth of this plant, as indicated by no significant changes in the fresh weights of leaves and roots and the slight induction of phytochelatins in plant tissues, whereas cadmium concentrations of 0.16 to 1 microM were toxic, and cadmium toxicity increased with the increase of cadmium concentrations in solutions, accompanied by the dramatic production of phytochelatins in plant tissues, especially in roots. There was a positive correction between root phytochelatin levels and cadmium toxicity, as measured by the growth inhibition rate of the root fresh weight. The results suggested that phytochelatins in aquatic macrophytes can serve as sensitive biomarkers for heavy metal toxicity in a moderately polluted water environment. PMID:20183981

  1. Detection and Quantification of Silver Nanoparticles at Environmentally Relevant Concentrations Using Asymmetric Flow Field-Flow Fractionation Online with Single Particle Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Huynh, Khanh An; Siska, Emily; Heithmar, Edward; Tadjiki, Soheyl; Pergantis, Spiros A

    2016-05-01

    The presence of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in aquatic environments could potentially cause adverse impacts on ecosystems and human health. However, current understanding of the environmental fate and transport of AgNPs is still limited because their properties in complex environmental samples cannot be accurately determined. In this study, the feasibility of using asymmetric flow field-flow fractionation (AF4) connected online with single particle inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (spICPMS) to detect and quantify AgNPs at environmentally relevant concentrations was investigated. The AF4 channel had a thickness of 350 μm and its accumulation wall was a 10 kDa regenerated cellulose membrane. A 0.02% FL-70 surfactant solution was used as an AF4 carrier. With 1.2 mL/min AF4 cross-flow rate, 1.5 mL/min AF4 channel flow rate, and 5 ms spICPMS dwell time, the AF4-spICPMS can detect and quantify 40-80 nm AgNPs, as well as Ag-SiO2 core-shell nanoparticles (51.0 nm diameter Ag core and 21.6 nm SiO2 shell), with good recovery within 30 min. This system was not only effective in differentiating and quantifying different types of AgNPs with similar hydrodynamic diameters, such as in mixtures containing Ag-SiO2 core-shell nanoparticles and 40-80 nm AgNPs, but also suitable for differentiating between 40 nm AgNPs and elevated Ag(+) content. The study results indicate that AF4-spICPMS is capable of detecting and quantifying AgNPs and other engineered metal nanomaterials in environmental samples. Nevertheless, further studies are needed before AF4-spICPMS can become a routine analytical technique. PMID:27104795

  2. Speciation, Dissolution, and Redox Reactions of Chromium Relevant to Pretreatment and Separation of High-Level Tank Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Clark Sue B.; Dhanpat Rai; Linfeng Rao

    2005-04-20

    Chromium, one of the problematic elements in tank sludges, is considered the most important constituent in defining the total volume of high-level radioactive waste (HLW) glass. Current sludge washing processes (e.g. caustic leaching, 3 M NaOH) are not effective in removing Cr. This inefficient removal would result in production of an unacceptably large volume of HLW glass and thus a tremendous increase in the cost of waste disposal. This proposed research seeks to develop fundamental data for chromium (Cr) reactions that are not currently available but are essential for developing effective methodologies for removing Cr form high-level waste (HLW). Our objectives are to study (1) the dissolution of several solid phases (e.g., CrOOH, Cr2O3(c), Cr(OH)3, and Fe and Cr, binary hydroxides, identified to be important from sludge leaching studies) in highly alkaline solutions and in the presence of other electrolytes (e.g., carbonate, phosphate, sulfate, nitrite), and (2) the effect of the nature of Cr solid phases and aqueous species on their redox reactivity with a variety of potential oxidants (e.g., H2o2, persulfate, O2, and ferrate). This information will provide critical support for developing enhanced pretreatment strategies for removing Cr from HLW and will achieve a major cost reduction HLW disposal.

  3. SPECIATION, DISSOLUTION, AND REDOX REACTIONS OF CHROMIUM RELEVANT TO PRETREATMENT AND SEPARATION OF HIGH-LEVEL TANK WASTES

    SciTech Connect

    Rai, Dhanpat; Rao, Linfeng; Clark, Sue B.

    2004-06-01

    Chromium, one of the problematic elements in tank sludges, is considered the most important constituent in defining the total volume of high-level radioactive waste (HLW) glass. Current sludge washing processes (e.g. caustic leaching, 3 M NaOH) are not effective in removing Cr. This inefficient removal would result in production of an unacceptably large volume of HLW glass and thus a tremendous increase in the cost of waste disposal. This proposed research seeks to develop fundamental data for chromium (Cr) reactions that are not currently available but are essential for developing effective methodologies for removing Cr form high-level waste (HLW). Our objectives are to study (1) the dissolution of several solid phases (e.g., CrOOH, Cr2O3(c), Cr(OH)3, and Fe and Cr, binary hydroxides, identified to be important from sludge leaching studies) in highly alkaline solutions and in the presence of other electrolytes (e.g., carbonate, phosphate, sulfate, nitrite), and (2) the effect of the nature of Cr solid phases and aqueous species on their redox reactivity with a variety of potential oxidants (e.g., H2O2, persulfate, O2, and ferrate). This information will provide critical support for developing enhanced pretreatment strategies for removing Cr from HLW and will achieve a major cost reduction in HLW disposal.

  4. Preoperative anxiety induces no clinically relevant effect on intraoperative nociceptive levels during breast surgery under general anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Hashimoto, Kazuma; Iwayama, Sachiko; Sano, Yuka; Tatara, Tsuneo; Hirose, Munetaka

    2015-12-01

    Anxiety can affect acute and chronic postoperative pain after breast surgery. Nociceptive response during surgery might also be affected by preoperative anxiety even under unconscious state during general anesthesia. The aim of this retrospective study was to investigate nociceptive responses during breast surgery under general anesthesia in patients with or without preoperative anxiety. Patients (n = 45) were divided into a low-anxiety group (n = 25) and a high-anxiety group (n = 20) in accordance with preoperative scores for the State Trait Anxiety Inventory. We performed discriminant analysis to compare nociception during surgery using three intraoperative averaged values: heart rate; systolic blood pressure; and perfusion index. No significant differences in discriminant score were seen between groups (p = 0.10). Although we performed propensity score-matching to reduce the bias due to confounding variables in this retrospective study, there was also no significant difference in levels of nociceptive response between groups (p = 0.06). In conclusion, the level of nociception during breast surgery is not significantly affected by preoperative anxiety. PMID:25995061

  5. Speciation, Dissolution, and Redox Reactions of Chromium Relevant to Pretreatment and Separation of High-Level Tank Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Dhapat Rai; Linfeng Rao

    2006-06-01

    Chromium, one of the problematic elements in tank sludges, is considered the most important constituent in defining the total volume of high-level radioactive waste (HLW) glass. Current sludge-washing processes (e.g. caustic leaching, 3 M NaOH) are not effective in removing Cr. Such inefficient removal would result in the production of an unacceptably large volume of HLW glass and thus a tremendous increase in the cost of waste disposal. This proposed research seeks to develop fundamental data for chromium (Cr) reactions that are not currently available but are essential for developing effective methodologies for removing Cr form high-level waste (HLW). Our objectives are to study (1) the dissolution of several solid phases (e.g., CrOOH, Cr2O3(c), Cr(OH)3, and Fe and Cr, binary hydroxides, identified to be important from sludge leaching studies) in highly alkaline solutions and in the presence of other electrolytes (e.g., carbonate, phosphate, sulfate, nitrite), and (2) the effect of the nature of Cr solid phases and aqueous species on their redox reactivity with a variety of potential oxidants (H2O2, persulfate, hypochlorite, etc.). This information will provide critical support for developing enhanced pretreatment strategies for removing Cr from HLW and will achieve a major cost reduction in HLW disposal.

  6. Speciation, Dissolution, and Redox Reactions of Chromium Relevant to Pretreatment and Separation of High-Level Tank Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Rai Dhanpat; Rao Linfeng

    2005-09-30

    Chromium, one of the problematic elements in tank sludges, is considered the most important constituent in defining the total volume of high-level radioactive waste (HLW) glass. Current sludge washing processes (e.g. caustic leaching, 3 M NaOH) are not effective in removing Cr. Such inefficient removal would result in the production of an unacceptably large volume of HLW glass and thus a tremendous increase in the cost of waste disposal. This proposed research seeks to develop fundamental data for chromium (Cr) reactions that are not currently available but are essential for developing effective methodologies for removing Cr form high-level waste (HLW). Our objectives are to study (1) the dissolution of several solid phases (e.g., CrOOH, Cr2O3(c), Cr(OH)3, and Fe and Cr, binary hydroxides, identified to be important from sludge leaching studies) in highly alkaline solutions and in the presence of other electrolytes (e.g., carbonate, phosphate, sulfate, nitrite), and (2) the effect of the nature of Cr solid phases and aqueous species on their redox reactivity with a variety of potential oxidants (H2O2, persulfate, hypochlorite, etc.). This information will provide critical support for developing enhanced pretreatment strategies for removing Cr from HLW and will achieve a major cost reduction in HLW disposal.

  7. Intraoperative validation of CT-based lymph nodal levels, sublevels IIa and IIb: Is it of clinical relevance in selective radiation therapy?

    SciTech Connect

    Levendag, Peter . E-mail: p.levendag@erasmusmc.nl; Gregoire, Vincent; Hamoir, Marc; Voet, Peter; Est, Henrie van der; Heijmen, Ben; Kerrebijn, Jeroen

    2005-07-01

    Purpose: The objectives of this study are to discuss the intraoperative validation of CT-based boundaries of lymph nodal levels in the neck, and in particular the clinical relevance of the delineation of sublevels IIa and IIb in case of selective radiation therapy (RT). Methods and Materials: To validate the radiologically defined level contours, clips were positioned intraoperatively at the level boundaries defined by surgical anatomy. In 10 consecutive patients, clips were placed, at the time of a neck dissection being performed, at the most cranial border of the neck. Anterior-posterior and lateral X-ray films were obtained intraoperatively. Next, in 3 patients, neck levels were contoured on preoperative contrast-enhanced CT scans according to the international consensus guidelines. From each of these 3 patients, an intraoperative CT scan was also obtained, with clips placed at the surgical-anatomy-based level boundaries. The preoperative (CT-based) and intraoperative (surgery-defined) CT scans were matched. Results: Clips placed at the most cranial part of the neck lined up at the caudal part of the transverse process of the cervical vertebra C-I. The posterior border of surgical level IIa (spinal accessory nerve [SAN]) did not match with the posterior border of CT-based level IIa (internal jugular vein [IJV]). Other surgical boundaries and CT-based contours were in good agreement. Conclusions: The cranial border of the neck, i.e., the cranial border of level IIa/IIb, corresponds to the caudal edge of the lateral process of C-I. Except for the posterior border between level IIa and level IIb, a perfect match was observed between the other surgical-clip-identified levels II-V boundaries (surgical-anatomy) and the CT-based delineation contours. It is argued that (1) because of the parotid gland overlapping part of level II, and (2) the frequent infestation of occult metastatic cells in the lymph channels around the IJV, the division of level II into radiologic

  8. Environmentally Relevant Dose of Bisphenol A Does Not Affect Lipid Metabolism and Has No Synergetic or Antagonistic Effects on Genistein’s Beneficial Roles on Lipid Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Ying; Li, Hongyu; Zhao, Nana; Yang, Huiqin; Ye, Xiaolei; He, Dongliang; Yang, Hui; Jin, Xin; Tian, Chong; Ying, Chenjiang

    2016-01-01

    Both bisphenol A (BPA, an endocrine disrupting chemicals) and genistein (a phytoestrogen mainly derived from leguminosae) are able to bind to estrogen receptors, but they are considered to have different effects on metabolic syndrome, surprisingly. We here investigate the effects of an environmentally relevant dose of BPA alone and the combined effects with genistein on lipid metabolism in rats. Eight groups of adult male Wistar rats, fed with either standard chow diet or high-fat diet, were treated with BPA (50μg/kg/day), genistein (10mg/kg/day), and BPA plus genistein for 35 weeks, respectively. Metabolic parameters in serum and liver were determined; the hematoxylin/eosin and oil Red O staining were used to observe liver histologically; gene expressions related to hepatic lipid metabolism were analyzed by Real-time PCR; protein expressions of PPARγ, PPARα and LC3 in liver were analyzed by western blotting. No difference of body weight gain, total energy intake, liver weight/body weight or body fat percentage in both STD- and HFD-fed sub-groups was observed after treatment with BPA, genistein, or BPA plus genistein (P>0.05). Genistein alleviated lipid metabolism disorder and decreased the mRNA and protein expression of PPARγ (P<0.05), and increased the protein expression of LC3II (P<0.05) in liver of HFD-fed rats. However, BPA treatment had no effect on lipid metabolism in rats alone (P>0.05) or combined with genistein. Our findings suggest that long-term environmentally relevant dose of BPA did not affect lipid metabolism, and had no synergetic or antagonistic roles on genistein’s beneficial function on hepatic lipid metabolism. PMID:27171397

  9. Vulnerability-Based Spatial Sampling Stratification for the National Children’s Study, Worcester County, Massachusetts: Capturing Health-Relevant Environmental and Sociodemographic Variability

    PubMed Central

    Downs, Timothy J.; Ogneva-Himmelberger, Yelena; Aupont, Onesky; Wang, Yangyang; Raj, Ann; Zimmerman, Paula; Goble, Robert; Taylor, Octavia; Churchill, Linda; Lemay, Celeste; McLaughlin, Thomas; Felice, Marianne

    2010-01-01

    Background The National Children’s Study is the most ambitious study ever attempted in the United States to assess how environmental factors impact child health and development. It aims to follow 100,000 children from gestation until 21 years of age. Success requires breaking new interdisciplinary ground, starting with how to select the sample of > 1,000 children in each of 105 study sites; no standardized protocol exists for stratification of the target population by factoring in the diverse environments it inhabits. Worcester County, Massachusetts, like other sites, stratifies according to local conditions and local knowledge, subject to probability sampling rules. Objectives We answer the following questions: How do we divide Worcester County into viable strata that represent its health-relevant environmental and sociodemographic heterogeneity, subject to sampling rules? What potential does our approach have to inform stratification at other sites? Results We developed a multivariable, vulnerability-based method for spatial sampling consisting of two descriptive indices: a hazards/stressors exposure index (comprising three proxy variables), and an adaptive capacity/sociodemographic character index (five variables). Multivariable, health-relevant stratification at the start of the study may improve detection power for environment–child health associations down the line. Eighteen strata capture countywide heterogeneity in the indices and have optimal relative homogeneity within each. They achieve comparable expected birth counts and conform to local concepts of space. Conclusion The approach offers moderate to high potential to inform other sites, limited by intersite differences in data availability, geodemographics, and technical capacity. Energetic community engagement from the start promotes local stratification coherence, plus vital researcher–community trust and co-ownership for sustainability. PMID:20211802

  10. Effects of chronic exposure to environmentally relevant concentrations of waterborne depleted uranium on the digestive tract of zebrafish, Danio rerio.

    PubMed

    Augustine, Starrlight; Pereira, Sandrine; Floriani, Magali; Camilleri, Virginie; Kooijman, Sebastiaan A L M; Gagnaire, Béatrice; Adam-Guillermin, Christelle

    2015-04-01

    Uranium is a naturally occurring element, but activities linked to the nuclear fuel cycle can increase background levels in the surrounding waters. For this reason it is important to understand how this affects organisms residing in the water column. The objective of this study was to assess histopathological effects of uranium on the gut wall of a widely used model organism: zebrafish, Danio rerio. To this end we exposed zebrafish to 84 and 420 nM depleted uranium for over a month and then examined the histology of intestines of exposed individuals compared to controls. The gut wall of individuals exposed to 84 and 420 nM of uranium had large regions of degraded mucosa. Using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) coupled to energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy microanalysis (EDX) we found that uranium induced a decrease in the amount of calcium containing mitochondrial matrix granules per mitochondria. This is suggestive of perturbations to cellular metabolism and more specifically to cellular calcium homeostasis. TEM-EDX of the gut wall tissue further showed that some uranium was internalized in the nucleus of epithelial cells in the 420 nM treatment. Fluorescent in situ hybridization using specific probes to detect all eubacteria was performed on frozen sections of 6 individual fish in the 84 nM and 420 nM treatments. Bacterial colonization of the gut of individuals in the 420 nM seemed to differ from that of the controls and 84 nM individuals. We suggest that host-microbiota interactions are potentially disturbed in response to uranium induced stress. The damage induced by waterborne uranium to the gut wall did not seem to depend on the concentration of uranium in the media. We measure whole body residues of uranium at the end of the experiment and compute the mean dose rate absorbed for each condition. We discuss why effects might be uncoupled from external concentration and highlight that it is not so much the external concentration but the dynamics of