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Sample records for stiffness measurement lsm

  1. Usefulness of liver stiffness measurement during acute cellular rejection in liver transplantation.

    PubMed

    Crespo, Gonzalo; Castro-Narro, Graciela; García-Juárez, Ignacio; Benítez, Carlos; Ruiz, Pablo; Sastre, Lydia; Colmenero, Jordi; Miquel, Rosa; Sánchez-Fueyo, Alberto; Forns, Xavier; Navasa, Miquel

    2016-03-01

    Liver stiffness measurement (LSM) is a useful method to estimate liver fibrosis and portal hypertension. The inflammatory process that takes place in post-liver transplant acute cellular rejection (ACR) may also increase liver stiffness. We aimed to explore the association between liver stiffness and the severity of ACR, as well as to assess the relationship between liver stiffness and response to rejection treatment in a prospective study that included 27 liver recipients with biopsy-proven ACR, 30 stable recipients with normal liver tests, and 30 hepatitis C virus (HCV)-infected LT recipients with histologically diagnosed HCV recurrence. Patients with rejection were stratified into 2 groups (mild and moderate/severe) according to the severity of rejection evaluated with the Banff score. Routine biomarkers and LSM with FibroScan were performed at the time of liver biopsy (baseline) and at 7, 30, and 90 days in patients with rejection and at baseline in control patients. Median baseline liver stiffness was 5.9 kPa in the mild rejection group, 11 kPa in the moderate/severe group (P = 0.001), 4.2 kPa in stable recipients (P = 0.02 versus mild rejection), and 13.6 kPa in patients with recurrent HCV (P = 0.17 versus moderate/severe rejection). The area under the receiver operator characteristic curve of LSM to discriminate mild versus moderate/severe ACR was 0.924, and a LSM value of 8.5 kPa yielded a positive predictive value of 100% to diagnose moderate/severe rejection. Liver stiffness improved in 7%, 21%, and 64% of patients with moderate/severe rejection at 7, 30, and 90 days. In conclusion, according to the results of this exploratory study, LSM is associated with the severity of ACR in liver transplantation and thus may be of help in its assessment. Liver Transpl 22:298-304, 2016. © 2015 AASLD. PMID:26609794

  2. Liver Stiffness Measurement in Psoriasis: Do Metabolic or Disease Factors Play the Important Role?

    PubMed Central

    Pongpit, Jamrus; Porntharukchareon, Saneerat; Kaewduang, Piyaporn; Promson, Kwannapa; Stitchantrakul, Wasana; Petraksa, Supanna; Thakkinstian, Ammarin; Kositchaiwat, Chomsri; Rajatanavin, Natta; Sobhonslidsuk, Abhasnee

    2016-01-01

    Background. An increased prevalence of metabolic syndrome including nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) was reported in psoriasis. NAFLD can progress to nonalcoholic steatohepatitis and fibrosis. Transient elastography (TE) is a noninvasive liver fibrosis assessment. We evaluated the prevalence of significant liver fibrosis or high liver stiffness measurement (LSM) using the LSM cutoff over 7 kPa and its associated factors in psoriatic patients. Methods. Subjects underwent TE and ultrasonography. Univariate and multivariate analysis were performed for the associated factors. Results. One hundred and sixty-eight patients were recruited. Three patients were excluded due to TE failure. Mean BMI was 24.8 ± 4.7 kg/m2. NAFLD, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes were seen in 105 (63.6%), 83 (50.3%), and 31 (18.8%) patients. The total cumulative dose of methotrexate over 1.5 g was seen in 39 (23.6%) patients. Mean LSM was 5.3 ± 2.9 kPa. High LSM was found in 18 (11.0%) patients. Waist circumference (OR: 1.24; 95% CI: 1.11–1.38; P = 0.0002), diabetes (OR: 12.70; 95% CI: 1.84–87.70; P = 0.010), and AST (OR: 1.08; 95% CI: 1.02–1.16; P = 0.017) were associated with high LSM. Conclusion. 11% of psoriatic patients had significant liver fibrosis by high LSM. Waist circumference, diabetes, and AST level were the independent predictors. PMID:27006950

  3. Effects of patient factors on noninvasive liver stiffness measurement using acoustic radiation force impulse elastography in patients with chronic hepatitis C

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Previous research has shown variation in the effects of patient factors, including hepatic necroinflammatory activity, on liver stiffness measurement (LSM). This prospective study attempts to identify explanatory factors for LSM in patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) using acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) technology. Methods A cohort of 127 Taiwanese patients with CHC underwent ARFI LSM and immediate percutaneous liver biopsy. This study compares the concurrent diagnostic performances of LSM and FibroTest using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves. Three multiple linear regression models were used to evaluate the significance of concurrent patient factors in explaining LSM. Results To classify METAVIR fibrosis (F) stages, the areas under ROC curves (AUCs) were ARFI LSM, 0.847 (95% confidence interval (CI), 0.779-0.914) and FibroTest, 0.823 (95% CI, 0.748-0.898), for F1 versus F2-4; ARFI LSM, 0.902 (95% CI, 0.835-0.970) and FibroTest, 0.812 (95% CI, 0.735-0.888), for F1-2 versus F3-4; ARFI LSM, 0.831 (95% CI, 0.723-0.939) and FibroTest, 0.757 (95% CI, 0.648-0.865), for F1-3 versus F4. After adjusting for other demographic and biological covariates, biochemical and histological necroinflammatory factors consistently explained LSM. Factors included serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT)/upper limit of normal (ULN) categories (model R2?=?0.661, adjusted R2?=?0.629), ActiTest A scores (R2?=?0.662, adjusted R2?=?0.636), and METAVIR activity (A) grades (R2?=?0.651, adjusted R2?=?0.620). METAVIR F stages, body mass index, and platelet count were also independently associated with LSM. Necroinflammatory degrees, including ALT/ULN, ActiTest A scores, and METAVIR A grades, explained the false positivity of liver fibrosis staging using ARFI LSM. Conclusions The degree of hepatic necroinflammatory activity independently and significantly exaggerated liver fibrosis evaluation using ARFI LSM. However, comparisons with concurrent FibroTest indicate that ARFI LSM may be a promising alternative, or adjunctive single indicator, for liver fibrosis evaluation in patients with CHC. PMID:22877310

  4. Measurement and modeling of muon-induced neutrons in LSM in application for direct dark matter searches

    SciTech Connect

    Kozlov, Valentin; Collaboration: EDELWEISS Collaboration

    2013-08-08

    Due to a very low event rate expected in direct dark matter search experiments, a good understanding of every background component is crucial. Muon-induced neutrons constitute a prominent background, since neutrons lead to nuclear recoils and thus can mimic a potential dark matter signal. EDELWEISS is a Ge-bolometer experiment searching for WIMP dark matter. It is located in the Laboratoire Souterrain de Modane (LSM, France). We have measured muon-induced neutrons by means of a neutron counter based on Gd-loaded liquid scintillator. Studies of muon-induced neutrons are presented and include development of the appropriate MC model based on Geant4 and analysis of a 1000-days measurement campaign in LSM. We find a good agreement between measured rates of muon-induced neutrons and those predicted by the developed model with full event topology. The impact of the neutron background on current EDELWEISS data-taking as well as for next generation experiments such as EURECA is briefly discussed.

  5. Laser application on haptics: Tactile stiffness measurement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scalise, L.; Memeo, M.; Cannella, F.; Valente, M.; Caldwell, D. G.; Tomasini, E. P.

    2012-06-01

    There is a great interest in exploring the proprieties of the sense of the touch, its detailed knowledge in fact is a key issue in the area of robotics, haptics and human-machine interaction. In this paper, the authors focus their attention on a novel measurement method for the assessment of the tactile stiffness based on a original test rig; tactile stiffness is defined as the ratio between force, exerted by the finger, and the displacement of the finger tip operated during the test. To reach this scope, the paper describes a specific experimental test-rig used for the evaluation of subject tactile sensitivity, where finger force applied during tests as well as displacement and velocity of displacement, operated by the subject under investigation, are measured. Results show that tactile stiffness is linear respect to stimuli spatial difference (which is proportional to the difficulty to detect the variation of them). In particular, it has been possible to relate the force and displacement measured during the tests. The relationship between the response of the subject to the grating, velocity and force is determined. These results permit to carry out the further experimental tests on the same subject avoiding the use of a load cell and therefore simplifying the measurement test rig and data post-processing. Indeed, the first aspect (use of a load cell) can be relevant, because the grating positions are different, requiring a specific re-calibration and setting before each trial; while the second aspect allows simplify the test rig complexity and the processing algorithm.

  6. The Application of Liver Stiffness Measurement in Residents Without Overt Liver Diseases Through a Community-Based Screening Program.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Pin-Nan; Chiu, Yen-Cheng; Chiu, Hung-Chih; Chien, Shih-Chieh

    2016-03-01

    The application of liver stiffness measurement (LSM) by transient elastography (TE) in general population remains to clarify. This cohort study aimed to examine the usefulness of TE and to identify factors associated with significant liver fibrosis in community-based population.We conducted a hepatitis screening program in 2 remote villages of Southern Taiwan. All residents participated voluntarily and received questionnaire evaluation, blood tests, abdominal sonography, and LSM by TE. Residents with any one of following criteria including hepatitis B virus infection, hepatitis C virus infection, more than moderate alcohol drinking, and failure to obtain valid or reliable LSM were excluded.There were 831 residents participated in program. The valid and reliable LSM were obtained in 98.3% and 96.3% of residents, respectively. Finally, a total of 559 residents including 283 residents with nonalcoholic steatotic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) were enrolled for analysis. The mean liver stiffness was 4.9 ± 1.9 kPa. The liver stiffness increased in residents with diabetes mellitus (DM), higher body mass index (BMI), hypertension, abnormal waist-hip circumference ration (WHR), higher waist circumference (WC), and presence of fatty liver. Higher body weight, higher BMI, higher WC, abnormal WHR, abnormal aspartate aminotransferase (AST), abnormal alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and DM were the factors associated with significant fibrosis (liver stiffness ≥7 kPa) in either all participants or NAFLD residents. As determined by multivariate analysis, abnormal AST values and DM were the 2 independent factors in all participants (abnormal AST: OR 3.648, 95% CI 1.134-11.740, P = 0.03; DM: OR 2.882, 95% CI 1.282-6.478, P = 0.01) and in residents with NAFLD (abnormal AST: OR 4.197, 95% CI 1.154-15.262, P = 0.03; DM: OR 3.254, 95% CI 1.258-8.413, P = 0.02).LSM by TE is a useful screening tool in community. In residents, who were absence of chronic hepatitis virus infection or consumed less than moderate alcohol drinking, exhibited DM or abnormal AST values may consider a substantial group with significant fibrosis in community. PMID:27015215

  7. Measuring Ascending Aortic Stiffness In Vivo in Mice Using Ultrasound

    PubMed Central

    Kuo, Maggie M.; Barodka, Viachaslau; Abraham, Theodore P.; Steppan, Jochen; Shoukas, Artin A.; Butlin, Mark; Avolio, Alberto; Berkowitz, Dan E.; Santhanam, Lakshmi

    2014-01-01

    We present a protocol for measuring in vivo aortic stiffness in mice using high-resolution ultrasound imaging. Aortic diameter is measured by ultrasound and aortic blood pressure is measured invasively with a solid-state pressure catheter. Blood pressure is raised then lowered incrementally by intravenous infusion of vasoactive drugs phenylephrine and sodium nitroprusside. Aortic diameter is measured for each pressure step to characterize the pressure-diameter relationship of the ascending aorta. Stiffness indices derived from the pressure-diameter relationship can be calculated from the data collected. Calculation of arterial compliance is described in this protocol. This technique can be used to investigate mechanisms underlying increased aortic stiffness associated with cardiovascular disease and aging. The technique produces a physiologically relevant measure of stiffness compared to ex vivo approaches because physiological influences on aortic stiffness are incorporated in the measurement. The primary limitation of this technique is the measurement error introduced from the movement of the aorta during the cardiac cycle. This motion can be compensated by adjusting the location of the probe with the aortic movement as well as making multiple measurements of the aortic pressure-diameter relationship and expanding the experimental group size. PMID:25489936

  8. The measurement of plain weft-knitted fabric stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haji Mohamad, Ayhan; Cassidy, Thomas; Brydon, Alan; Halley, Dave

    2012-05-01

    A new instrument and a test method are presented in this paper that can evaluate the stiffness of plain weft-knitted fabrics. The WIRA Instrumentation Tester can measure torsion data for various flexible fibre assemblies whilst they are being twisted. The torsional properties of two types of fabrics, namely nonwoven and knitted fabrics, were analyzed. Then, comparisons between bending rigidity and torsional rigidity have been conducted using FAST-2, Shirley, Heart Loop and the new WIRA method for the assessment of fabric stiffness. The results show high correlation between bending rigidity and torsional rigidity in assessment of nonwoven fabric stiffness; they also reveal that the WIRA tester and torsional rigidity are more suitable for characterizing the stiffness of plain weft-knitted fabrics than the other test methods.

  9. Stiffness measurement using terahertz and acoustic waves for biological samples.

    PubMed

    Yoon, Jong-Hyun; Yang, Young-Joong; Park, Jinho; Son, Heyjin; Park, Hochong; Park, Gun-Sik; Ahn, Chang-Beom

    2015-12-14

    A method is proposed to measure sample stiffness using terahertz wave and acoustic stimulation. The stiffness-dependent vibration is measured using terahertz wave (T-ray) during an acoustic stimulation. To quantify the vibration, time of the peak amplitude of the reflected T-ray is measured. In our experiment, the T-ray is asynchronously applied during the period of the acoustic stimulation, and multiple measurements are taken to use the standard deviation and the maximum difference in the peak times to estimate the amplitude of the vibration. Some preliminary results are shown using biological samples. PMID:26699056

  10. Cellular mechanoadaptation to substrate mechanical properties: contributions of substrate stiffness and thickness to cell stiffness measurements using AFM.

    PubMed

    Vichare, Shirish; Sen, Shamik; Inamdar, Mandar M

    2014-02-28

    Mechanosensing by adherent cells is usually studied by quantifying cell responses on hydrogels that are covalently linked to a rigid substrate. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) represents a convenient way of characterizing the mechanoadaptation response of adherent cells on hydrogels of varying stiffness and thickness. Since AFM measurements reflect the effective cell stiffness, therefore, in addition to measuring real cytoskeletal alterations across different conditions, these measurements might also be influenced by the geometry and physical properties of the substrate itself. To better understand how the physical attributes of the gel influence AFM stiffness measurements of cells, we have used finite element analysis to simulate the indentation of cells of various spreads resting on hydrogels of varying stiffness and thickness. Consistent with experimental results, our simulation results indicate that for well spread cells, stiffness values are significantly over-estimated when experiments are performed on cells cultured on soft and thin gels. Using parametric studies, we have developed scaling relationships between the effective stiffness probed by AFM and the bulk cell stiffness, taking cell and tip geometry, hydrogel properties, nuclear stiffness and cell contractility into account. Finally, using simulated mechanoadaptation responses, we have demonstrated that a cell stiffening response may arise purely due to the substrate properties. Collectively, our results demonstrate the need to take hydrogel properties into account while estimating cell stiffness using AFM indentation. PMID:24651595

  11. Automated Liver Stiffness Measurements with Magnetic Resonance Elastography

    PubMed Central

    Dzyubak, Bogdan; Glaser, Kevin; Yin, Meng; Talwalkar, Jayant; Chen, Jun; Manduca, Armando; Ehman, Richard L.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose To provide a fully-automated algorithm for obtaining stiffness measurements from hepatic MR Elastography images that are consistent with measurements performed by expert readers. Materials and Methods An initial liver contour was found using an adaptive threshold and expanded using an active contour to select a homogeneous area of the liver. The confidence map generated during the stiffness calculation was used to select a region of reliable wave propagation. The average stiffness within the automatically-generated ROI was compared to measurements by two trained readers in a set of 88 clinical test cases ranging from healthy to severely fibrotic. Results The stiffness measurements reported by the readers differed by ?6.76% 22.8 % (95% confidence) and had an ICC of 0.972 (p<0.05).The algorithm and the more experienced reader differed by 4.32% 14.9 with an ICC of 0.987. Conclusion The automated algorithm performed reliably, even though MRE acquisitions often have motion artifacts present. The correlation between the automated measurements and those from the trained readers was superior to the correlation between the readers. PMID:23281171

  12. A novel assessment technique for measuring ankle orientation and stiffness.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Mingming; Davies, T Claire; Nandakumar, Anoop; Quan Xie, Sheng

    2015-09-18

    The measurement of ankle orientation and stiffness can provide insight into improvements and allows for effective monitoring during a rehabilitation program. Existing assessment techniques have a variety of limitations. Dynamometer based methods rely on manual manipulation. The use of torque meter is usually for single degree-of-freedom (DOF) devices. This study proposes a novel ankle assessment technique that can be used for multiple DOFs devices working in both manual and automatic modes using the position sensor and the multi-axis load cell. As a preliminary evaluation, an assessment device for ankle dorsiflexion and plantarflexion was constructed. Nine subjects participated to evaluate the effectiveness of the assessment device in determining ankle orientation and stiffness. The measured ankle orientation was consistent with that from the NDI Polaris optical tracking system. The measured ankle torque and stiffness compared well with published data. The test-retest reliability was high with intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC2, 1) values greater than 0.846 and standard error of measurement (SEM) less than 1.38. PMID:26159061

  13. An ultrawideband radar based pulse sensor for arterial stiffness measurement.

    PubMed

    Tao, Teh-Ho; Hu, Shin-Jen; Peng, Jla-Hung; Kuo, Su-Chen

    2007-01-01

    A novel pulse sensor based on ultrawideband (UWB) radar to detect the arterial vessel movements on various sites on human body without applying external pressure on the arterial vessel was designed and evaluated for aortic stiffness measurement. The UWB pulse sensor was evaluated for its functional performance and human study was carried out to validate the UWB sensor as a tool for clinical screening of subjects with cardiovascular risks. Good agreement in measurement of pulse wave velocity, an index of arterial distensibility, was achieved between the UWB pulse sensor and the applanation tonometer. PMID:18002297

  14. A method for measuring exchange stiffness in ferromagnetic films

    SciTech Connect

    Girt, Erol; Huttema, W.; Montoya, E.; Kardasz, B.; Eyrich, C.; Heinrich, B.; Mryasov, O. N.; Dobin, A. Yu.; Karis, O.

    2011-04-01

    An exchange stiffness, A{sub ex}, in ferromagnetic films is obtained by fitting the M(H) dependence of two ferromagnetic layers antiferromagnetically coupled across a nonmagnetic spacer layer with a simple micromagnetic model. In epitaxial and textured structures this method allows measuring A{sub ex} between the crystallographic planes perpendicular to the growth direction of ferromagnetic films. Our results show that A{sub ex} between [0001] planes in textured Co grains is 1.54 {+-} 0.12 x 10{sup -11} J/m.

  15. Muscle stiffness measured under conditions simulating natural sound production.

    PubMed Central

    Dobrunz, L E; Pelletier, D G; McMahon, T A

    1990-01-01

    Isolated whole frog gastrocnemius muscles were electrically stimulated to peak twitch tension while held isometrically in a bath at 4 degrees C. A quartz hydrophone detected vibrations of the muscle by measuring the pressure fluctuations caused by muscle movement. A small steel collar was slipped over the belly of the muscle. Transient forces including plucks and steady sinusoidal driving were applied to the collar by causing currents to flow in a coil held near the collar. The instantaneous resonant frequencies measured by the pluck and driving techniques were the same at various times during a twitch contraction cycle. The strain produced by the plucking technique in the outermost fibers was less than 1.6 x 10(-4%), a strain three orders of magnitude less than that required to drop the tension to zero in quick-length-change experiments. Because the pressure transients recorded by the hydrophone during plucks and naturally occurring sounds were of comparable amplitude, strains in the muscle due to naturally occurring sound must also be of the order 10(-3%). A simple model assuming that the muscle is an elastic bar under tension was used to calculate the instantaneous elastic modulus E as a function of time during a twitch, given the tension and resonant frequency. The result for Emax, the peak value of E during a twitch, was typically 2.8 x 10(6) N/m2. The methods used here for measuring muscle stiffness are unusual in that the apparatus used for measuring stiffness is separate from the apparatus controlling and measuring force and length. PMID:2207252

  16. Measurement of stiffness of standing trees and felled logs using acoustics: A review.

    PubMed

    Legg, Mathew; Bradley, Stuart

    2016-02-01

    This paper provides a review on the use of acoustics to measure stiffness of standing trees, stems, and logs. An outline is given of the properties of wood and how these are related to stiffness and acoustic velocity throughout the tree. Factors are described that influence the speed of sound in wood, including the different types of acoustic waves which propagate in tree stems and lumber. Acoustic tools and techniques that have been used to measure the stiffness of wood are reviewed. The reasons for a systematic difference between direct and acoustic measurements of stiffness for standing trees, and methods for correction, are discussed. Other techniques, which have been used in addition to acoustics to try to improve stiffness measurements, are also briefly described. Also reviewed are studies which have used acoustic tools to investigate factors that influence the stiffness of trees. These factors include different silvicultural practices, geographic and environmental conditions, and genetics. PMID:26936543

  17. PolyMUMPs MEMS device to measure mechanical stiffness of single cells in aqueous media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Warnat, S.; King, H.; Forbrigger, C.; Hubbard, T.

    2015-02-01

    A method of experimentally determining the mechanical stiffness of single cells by using differential displacement measurements in a two stage spring system is presented. The spring system consists of a known MEMS reference spring and an unknown cellular stiffness: the ratio of displacements is related to the ratio of stiffness. A polyMUMPs implementation for aqueous media is presented and displacement measurements made from optical microphotographs using a FFT based displacement method with a repeatability of ~20?nm. The approach was first validated on a MEMS two stage spring system of known stiffness. The measured stiffness ratios of control structures (i) MEMS spring systems and (ii) polystyrene microspheres were found to agree with theoretical values. Mechanical tests were then performed on Saccharomyces cerevisiae (Bakers yeast) in aqueous media. Cells were placed (using a micropipette) inside MEMS measuring structures and compressed between two jaws using an electrostatic actuator and displacements measured. Tested cells showed stiffness values between 5.4 and 8.4?N?m-1 with an uncertainty of 11%. In addition, non-viable cells were tested by exposing viable cells to methanol. The resultant mean cell stiffness dropped by factor of 3 and an explicit discrimination between viable and non-viable cells based on mechanical stiffness was seen.

  18. A new method of measuring the stiffness of astronauts' EVA gloves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mousavi, Mehdi; Appendino, Silvia; Battezzato, Alessandro; Bonanno, Alberto; Chen Chen, Fai; Crepaldi, Marco; Demarchi, Danilo; Favetto, Alain; Pescarmona, Francesco

    2014-04-01

    Hand fatigue is one of the most important problems of astronauts during their missions to space. This fatigue is due to the stiffness of the astronauts' gloves known as Extravehicular Activity (EVA) gloves. The EVA glove has a multilayered, bulky structure and is pressurized against the vacuum of space. In order to evaluate the stiffness of EVA gloves, different methods have been proposed in the past. In particular, the effects of wearing an EVA glove on the performance of the hands have been published by many researchers to represent the stiffness of the EVA glove. In this paper, a new method for measuring the stiffness of EVA gloves is proposed. A tendon-actuated finger probe is designed and used as an alternative to the human index finger in order to be placed inside an EVA glove and measure its stiffness. The finger probe is equipped with accelerometers, which work as tilt sensors, to measure the angles of its phalanges. The phalanges are actuated by applying different amount of torque using the tendons of the finger probe. Moreover, a hypobaric glove box is designed and realized to simulate the actual operating pressure of the EVA glove and to measure its stiffness in both pressurized and non-pressurized conditions. In order to prove the right performance of the proposed finger probe, an Orlam-DM EVA glove is used to perform a number of tests. The equation of stiffness for the PIP joint of this glove is extracted from the results acquired from the tests. This equation presents the torque required to flex the middle phalanx of the glove. Then, the effect of pressurization on the stiffness is highlighted in the last section. This setup can be used to measure the stiffness of different kinds of EVA gloves and allows direct, numerical comparison of their stiffness.

  19. Single cell stiffness measurement at various humidity conditions by nanomanipulation of a nano-needle.

    PubMed

    Shen, Yajing; Nakajima, Masahiro; Yang, Zhan; Tajima, Hirotaka; Najdovski, Zoran; Homma, Michio; Fukuda, Toshio

    2013-04-12

    This paper presents a method for single cell stiffness measurement based on a nano-needle and nanomanipulation. The nano-needle with a buffering beam was fabricated from an atomic force microscope cantilever by the focused ion beam etching technique. Wild type yeast cells (W303) were prepared and placed on the sample stage inside an environmental scanning electron microscope (ESEM) chamber. The nanomanipulator actuated the nano-needle to press against a single yeast cell. As a result, the deformation of the cell and nano-needle was observed by the ESEM system in real-time. Finally, the stiffness of the single cell was determined based on this deformation information. To reveal the relationship between the cell stiffness and the environmental humidity conditions, the cell stiffness was measured at three different humidity conditions, i.e.40, 70 and 100%, respectively. The results show that the stiffness of a single cell is reduced with increasing humidity. PMID:23507613

  20. Single cell stiffness measurement at various humidity conditions by nanomanipulation of a nano-needle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Yajing; Nakajima, Masahiro; Yang, Zhan; Tajima, Hirotaka; Najdovski, Zoran; Homma, Michio; Fukuda, Toshio

    2013-04-01

    This paper presents a method for single cell stiffness measurement based on a nano-needle and nanomanipulation. The nano-needle with a buffering beam was fabricated from an atomic force microscope cantilever by the focused ion beam etching technique. Wild type yeast cells (W303) were prepared and placed on the sample stage inside an environmental scanning electron microscope (ESEM) chamber. The nanomanipulator actuated the nano-needle to press against a single yeast cell. As a result, the deformation of the cell and nano-needle was observed by the ESEM system in real-time. Finally, the stiffness of the single cell was determined based on this deformation information. To reveal the relationship between the cell stiffness and the environmental humidity conditions, the cell stiffness was measured at three different humidity conditions, i.e. 40, 70 and 100%, respectively. The results show that the stiffness of a single cell is reduced with increasing humidity.

  1. Flexural Stiffness of Myosin Va Subdomains as Measured from Tethered Particle Motion

    PubMed Central

    Michalek, Arthur J.; Kennedy, Guy G.; Warshaw, David M.; Ali, M. Yusuf

    2015-01-01

    Myosin Va (MyoVa) is a processive molecular motor involved in intracellular cargo transport on the actin cytoskeleton. The motor's processivity and ability to navigate actin intersections are believed to be governed by the stiffness of various parts of the motor's structure. Specifically, changes in calcium may regulate motor processivity by altering the motor's lever arm stiffness and thus its interhead communication. In order to measure the flexural stiffness of MyoVa subdomains, we use tethered particle microscopy, which relates the Brownian motion of fluorescent quantum dots, which are attached to various single- and double-headed MyoVa constructs bound to actin in rigor, to the motor's flexural stiffness. Based on these measurements, the MyoVa lever arm and coiled-coil rod domain have comparable flexural stiffness (0.034 pN/nm). Upon addition of calcium, the lever arm stiffness is reduced 40% as a result of calmodulins potentially dissociating from the lever arm. In addition, the flexural stiffness of the full-length MyoVa construct is an order of magnitude less stiff than both a single lever arm and the coiled-coil rod. This suggests that the MyoVa lever arm-rod junction provides a flexible hinge that would allow the motor to maneuver cargo through the complex intracellular actin network. PMID:26770194

  2. In vivo and in vitro measurements of pulmonary arterial stiffness: A brief review

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Lian; Chesler, Naomi C.

    2012-01-01

    During the progression of pulmonary hypertension (PH), proximal pulmonary arteries (PAs) undergo remodeling such that they become thicker and the elastic modulus increases. Both of these changes increase the vascular stiffness. The increase in pulmonary vascular stiffness contributes to increased right ventricular (RV) afterload, which causes RV hypertrophy and eventually failure. Studies have found that proximal PA stiffness or its inverse, compliance, is strongly related to morbidity and mortality in patients with PH. Therefore, accurate in vivo measurement of PA stiffness is useful for prognoses in patients with PH. It is also important to understand the structural changes in PAs that occur with PH that are responsible for stiffening. Here, we briefly review the most common parameters used to quantify stiffness and in vivo and in vitro methods for measuring PA stiffness in human and animal models. For in vivo approaches, we review invasive and noninvasive approaches that are based on measurements of pressure and inner or outer diameter or cross-sectional area. For in vitro techniques, we review several different testing methods that mimic one, two or several aspects of physiological loading (e.g., uniaxial and biaxial testing, dynamic inflation-force testing). Many in vivo and in vitro measurement methods exist in the literature, and it is important to carefully choose an appropriate method to measure PA stiffness accurately. Therefore, advantages and disadvantages of each approach are discussed. PMID:23372936

  3. Non-Contact Stiffness Measurement of a Suspended Single Walled Carbon Nanotube Device

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zheng, Yun; Su, Chanmin; Getty, Stephanie

    2010-01-01

    A new nanoscale electric field sensor was developed for studying triboelectric charging in terrestrial and Martian dust devils. This sensor is capable to measure the large electric fields for large dust devils without saturation. However, to quantify the electric charges and the field strength it is critical to calibrate the mechanical stiffness of the sensor devices. We performed a technical feasibility study of the Nano E-field Sensor stiffness by a non-contact stiffness measurement method. The measurement is based on laser Doppler vibrometer measurement of the thermal noise due to energy flunctuations in the devices. The experiment method provides a novel approach to acquire data that is essential in analyzing the quantitative performance of the E-field Nano Sensor. To carry out the non-contact stiffness measurement, we fabricated a new Single-Walled Carbon Nanotube (SWCNT) E-field sensor with different SWCNTs suspension conditions. The power spectra of the thermal induced displacement in the nano E-field sensor were measured at the accuracy of picometer. The power spectra were then used to derive the mechanical stiffness of the sensors. Effect of suspension conditions on stiffness and sensor sensitivty was discussed. After combined deformation and resistivity measurement, we can compare with our laboratory testing and field testing results. This new non-contact measurement technology can also help to explore to other nano and MEMS devices in the future.

  4. “An Impediment to Living Life”: Why and How Should We Measure Stiffness in Polymyalgia Rheumatica?

    PubMed Central

    Mackie, Sarah Louise; Hughes, Rodney; Walsh, Margaret; Day, John; Newton, Marion; Pease, Colin; Kirwan, John; Morris, Marianne

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To explore patients’ concepts of stiffness in polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR), and how they think stiffness should be measured. Methods Eight focus groups were held at three centres involving 50 patients with current/previous PMR. Each group had at least one facilitator and one rapporteur making field notes. An interview schedule was used to stimulate discussion. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and analysed using an inductive thematic approach. Results Major themes identified were: symptoms: pain, stiffness and fatigue; functional impact; impact on daily schedule; and approaches to measurement. The common subtheme for the experience of stiffness was “difficulty in moving”, and usually considered as distinct from the experience of pain, albeit with a variable overlap. Some participants felt stiffness was the “overwhelming” symptom, in that it prevented them carrying out “fundamental activities” and “generally living life”. Diurnal variation in stiffness was generally described in relation to the daily schedule but was not the same as stiffness severity. Some participants suggested measuring stiffness using a numeric rating scale or a Likert scale, while others felt that it was more relevant and straightforward to measure difficulty in performing everyday activities rather than about stiffness itself. Conclusions A conceptual model of stiffness in PMR is presented where stiffness is an important part of the patient experience and impacts on their ability to live their lives. Stiffness is closely related to function and often regarded as interchangeable with pain. From the patients’ perspective, visual analogue scales measuring pain and stiffness were not the most useful method for reporting stiffness; participants preferred numerical rating scales, or assessments of function to reflect how stiffness impacts on their daily lives. Assessing function may be a pragmatic solution to difficulties in quantifying stiffness. PMID:25955770

  5. Stiffness modeling of flexible suspension structure for displacement measurement probing sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Junning; Bian, Xingyuan; Sun, Tao; Li, Leilei

    2015-02-01

    In order to solve the problem of performance analysis and optimal design of flexible suspension structure for displacement measurement probing sensors, a novel theoretical model of stiffness with high accuracy is proposed. Both displacements constraint and angle constraint of elastic diaphragms are considered during modeling, and a stiffness equation including all dimensional parameters and material characteristics of elastic diaphragms is obtained. Thus the stiffness of the flexible suspension structure is modeled theoretically and accurately, and the influence on performance of probing sensors by each parameter can be analyzed. Simulations results show that the theoretical model of stiffness proposed is more accurate than existing models, and performance analysis and optimal design of probing sensors can be carried out based on it.

  6. Integration of Acoustic Radiation Force and Optical Imaging for Blood Plasma Clot Stiffness Measurement

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Caroline W.; Perez, Matthew J.; Helmke, Brian P.; Viola, Francesco; Lawrence, Michael B.

    2015-01-01

    Despite the life-preserving function blood clotting serves in the body, inadequate or excessive blood clot stiffness has been associated with life-threatening diseases such as stroke, hemorrhage, and heart attack. The relationship between blood clot stiffness and vascular diseases underscores the importance of quantifying the magnitude and kinetics of bloods transformation from a fluid to a viscoelastic solid. To measure blood plasma clot stiffness, we have developed a method that uses ultrasound acoustic radiation force (ARF) to induce micron-scaled displacements (1-500 ?m) on microbeads suspended in blood plasma. The displacements were detected by optical microscopy and took place within a micro-liter sized clot region formed within a larger volume (2 mL sample) to minimize container surface effects. Modulation of the ultrasound generated acoustic radiation force allowed stiffness measurements to be made in blood plasma from before its gel point to the stage where it was a fully developed viscoelastic solid. A 0.5 wt % agarose hydrogel was 9.8-fold stiffer than the plasma (platelet-rich) clot at 1 h post-kaolin stimulus. The acoustic radiation force microbead method was sensitive to the presence of platelets and strength of coagulation stimulus. Platelet depletion reduced clot stiffness 6.9 fold relative to platelet rich plasma. The sensitivity of acoustic radiation force based stiffness assessment may allow for studying platelet regulation of both incipient and mature clot mechanical properties. PMID:26042775

  7. Turtle utricle dynamic behavior using a combined anatomically accurate model and experimentally measured hair bundle stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Davis, J.L.; Grant, J.W.

    2014-01-01

    Anatomically correct turtle utricle geometry was incorporated into two finite element models. The geometrically accurate model included appropriately shaped macular surface and otoconial layer, compact gel and column filament (or shear) layer thicknesses and thickness distributions. The first model included a shear layer where the effects of hair bundle stiffness was included as part of the shear layer modulus. This solid models undamped natural frequency was matched to an experimentally measured value. This frequency match established a realistic value of the effective shear layer Youngs modulus of 16 Pascals. We feel this is the most accurate prediction of this shear layer modulus and fits with other estimates (Kondrachuk, 2001b). The second model incorporated only beam elements in the shear layer to represent hair cell bundle stiffness. The beam element stiffnesss were further distributed to represent their location on the neuroepithelial surface. Experimentally measured striola hair cell bundles mean stiffness values were used in the striolar region and the mean extrastriola hair cell bundles stiffness values were used in this region. The results from this second model indicated that hair cell bundle stiffness contributes approximately 40% to the overall stiffness of the shear layer hair cell bundle complex. This analysis shows that high mass saccules, in general, achieve high gain at the sacrifice of frequency bandwidth. We propose the mechanism by which this can be achieved is through increase the otoconial layer mass. The theoretical difference in gain (deflection per acceleration) is shown for saccules with large otoconial layer mass relative to saccules and utricles with small otoconial layer mass. Also discussed is the necessity of these high mass saccules to increase their overall system shear layer stiffness. Undamped natural frequencies and mode shapes for these sensors are shown. PMID:25445820

  8. Turtle utricle dynamic behavior using a combined anatomically accurate model and experimentally measured hair bundle stiffness.

    PubMed

    Davis, J L; Grant, J W

    2014-12-01

    Anatomically correct turtle utricle geometry was incorporated into two finite element models. The geometrically accurate model included appropriately shaped macular surface and otoconial layer, compact gel and column filament (or shear) layer thicknesses and thickness distributions. The first model included a shear layer where the effects of hair bundle stiffness was included as part of the shear layer modulus. This solid model's undamped natural frequency was matched to an experimentally measured value. This frequency match established a realistic value of the effective shear layer Young's modulus of 16 Pa. We feel this is the most accurate prediction of this shear layer modulus and fits with other estimates (Kondrachuk, 2001b). The second model incorporated only beam elements in the shear layer to represent hair cell bundle stiffness. The beam element stiffness's were further distributed to represent their location on the neuroepithelial surface. Experimentally measured striola hair cell bundles mean stiffness values were used in the striolar region and the mean extrastriola hair cell bundles stiffness values were used in this region. The results from this second model indicated that hair cell bundle stiffness contributes approximately 40% to the overall stiffness of the shear layer-hair cell bundle complex. This analysis shows that high mass saccules, in general, achieve high gain at the sacrifice of frequency bandwidth. We propose the mechanism by which this can be achieved is through increase the otoconial layer mass. The theoretical difference in gain (deflection per acceleration) is shown for saccules with large otoconial layer mass relative to saccules and utricles with small otoconial layer mass. Also discussed is the necessity of these high mass saccules to increase their overall system shear layer stiffness. Undamped natural frequencies and mode shapes for these sensors are shown. PMID:25445820

  9. A Laplacian-based SNR measure: shear stiffness estimation in MR elastography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eon, Rehman S.; Huynh, Khang T.; Lake, David S.; Manduca, Armando

    2015-03-01

    Magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) is a phase-contrast MRI based technique that allows quantitative, noninvasive assessment of the mechanical properties of tissues by the introduction of shear waves into the body and measurement of the resulting displacements. In MRE, the calculated stiffness values are affected by noise, which is amplified by the inversion process. It would be useful to know that beyond some SNR threshold, the stiffness values are accurate within some confidence limit. The most common methods to calculate SNR values in MRE are variations of displacement SNR, which estimate the noise in the measured displacement. However, the accuracy of stiffness determination depends not only on the displacement SNR, but also on the wavelength of the shear wave, in turn dependent on the stiffness of the underlying material. More recently, the SNR of the octahedral shear strain (OSS) has been proposed as a more appropriate measure, since shear deformation is the signal in MRE. We also propose here another measure based on the SNR of the Laplacian of the data, since this is the most noise sensitive quantity calculated when performing direct inversion of the Helmholtz equation. The three SNR measures were compared on simulated data for materials of different stiffness with varying amounts of noise using three inversion algorithms commonly used in MRE (phase gradient, local frequency estimation, and direct inversion). We demonstrate that the proper SNR measure for MRE depends on the inversion algorithm used, and, more precisely, on the order of derivatives used in the inversion process.

  10. Measurement of passive ankle stiffness in subjects with chronic hemiparesis using a novel ankle robot

    PubMed Central

    Roy, Anindo; Bever, Christopher T.; Forrester, Larry W.; Macko, Richard F.; Hogan, Neville

    2011-01-01

    Our objective in this study was to assess passive mechanical stiffness in the ankle of chronic hemiparetic stroke survivors and to compare it with those of healthy young and older (age-matched) individuals. Given the importance of the ankle during locomotion, an accurate estimate of passive ankle stiffness would be valuable for locomotor rehabilitation, potentially providing a measure of recovery and a quantitative basis to design treatment protocols. Using a novel ankle robot, we characterized passive ankle stiffness both in sagittal and in frontal planes by applying perturbations to the ankle joint over the entire range of motion with subjects in a relaxed state. We found that passive stiffness of the affected ankle joint was significantly higher in chronic stroke survivors than in healthy adults of a similar cohort, both in the sagittal as well as frontal plane of movement, in three out of four directions tested with indistinguishable stiffness values in plantarflexion direction. Our findings are comparable to the literature, thus indicating its plausibility, and, to our knowledge, report for the first time passive stiffness in the frontal plane for persons with chronic stroke and older healthy adults. PMID:21346215

  11. Ultrasonic measurements of stiffness in thermal-mechanically fatigued IM7/5260 composites

    SciTech Connect

    Seale, M.D.; Madaras, E.I. )

    1999-08-01

    In recent years, ultrasonic methods have been developed that can measure the mechanical stiffness of composites. The Lamb wave velocity is directly related to the material parameters, so an effective method exists to ascertain the stiffness of composites by measuring the velocity of these waves. In this study, a Lamb wave measurement system was used to measure the bending and out-of-plane stiffness coefficients of thermoset composite laminates undergoing thermal-mechanical loading. A series of 16 ply and 32 ply composite laminates were subjected to thermal-mechanical fatigue (TMF) in load frames equipped with special environmental chambers. The composite system studied was a graphite fiber-reinforced bismaleimide thermoset, IM7/5260. The samples were subjected to both high and low temperature profiles as well as high-strain and low-strain profiles. The bending and out-of-plane stiffnesses for composite samples that have undergone over 6,000 cycles of combined thermal and mechanical fatigue are reported. The Lamb wave generated elastic stiffness results have shown decreases of up to 64% at 4,706 cycles for samples subjected to TMF at high temperatures and less than a 10% decrease at over 6,000 cycles for samples subjected to TMF at low temperatures.

  12. Live-cell subcellular measurement of cell stiffness using a microengineered stretchable micropost array membrane.

    PubMed

    Lam, Raymond H W; Weng, Shinuo; Lu, Wei; Fu, Jianping

    2012-10-01

    Forces are increasingly recognized as major regulators of cell structure and function, and the mechanical properties of cells, such as cell stiffness, are essential to the mechanisms by which cells sense forces, transmit them to the cell interior or to other cells, and transduce them into chemical signals that impact a spectrum of cellular responses. Here we reported a new whole-cell cell stiffness measurement technique with a subcellular spatial resolution. This technique was based on a novel cell stretching device that allowed for quantitative control and real-time measurements of mechanical stimuli and cellular biomechanical responses. Our strategy involved a microfabricated array of silicone elastomeric microposts integrated onto a stretchable elastomeric membrane. Using a computer-controlled vacuum, this micropost array membrane (mPAM) was activated to apply equibiaxial cell stretching forces to adherent cells attached on the tops of the microposts. The micropost top positions before and after mPAM stretches were recorded using fluorescence microscopy and further utilized to quantify local cell stretching forces and cell area increments. A robust computation scheme was developed and implemented for subcellular quantifications of cell stiffness using the data of local cell stretching forces and cell area increments generated from mPAM cell stretch assays. Our cell stiffness studies using the mPAM revealed strong positive correlations among cell stiffness, cellular traction force, and cell spread area, and illustrated the important functional roles of actin polymerization and myosin II-mediated cytoskeleton contractility in regulating cell stiffness. Collectively, our work reported a new approach for whole-cell stiffness measurements with a subcellular spatial resolution, which would help likely explain the complex biomechanical functions and force-sensing mechanisms of cells and design better materials for cell and tissue engineering and other applications in vivo. PMID:22935822

  13. Piezoelectric Sensor to Measure Soft and Hard Stiffness with High Sensitivity for Ultrasonic Transducers

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yan-Rui; Su, Chih-Chung; Lin, Wen-Jin; Chang, Shuo-Hung

    2015-01-01

    During dental sinus lift surgery, it is important to monitor the thickness of the remaining maxilla to avoid perforating the sinus membrane. Therefore, a sensor should be integrated into ultrasonic dental tools to prevent undesirable damage. This paper presents a piezoelectric (PZT) sensor installed in an ultrasonic transducer to measure the stiffness of high and low materials. Four design types using three PZT ring materials and a split PZT for actuator and sensor ring materials were studied. Three sensor locations were also examined. The voltage signals of the sensor and the displacement of the actuator were analyzed to distinguish the low and high stiffness. Using sensor type T1 made of the PZT-1 material and the front location A1 provided a high sensitivity of 2.47 Vm/kN. The experimental results demonstrated that our design can measure soft and hard stiffness. PMID:26110400

  14. Measurement of the UH-60A Hub Large Rotor Test Apparatus Control System Stiffness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kufeld, Robert M.

    2014-01-01

    This purpose of this report is to provides details of the measurement of the control system stiffness of the UH-60A rotor hub mounted on the Large Rotor Test Apparatus (UH-60A/LRTA). The UH-60A/LRTA was used in the 40- by 80-Foot Wind Tunnel to complete the full-scale wind tunnel test portion of the NASA / ARMY UH-60A Airloads Program. This report describes the LRTA control system and highlights the differences between the LRTA and UH-60A aircraft. The test hardware, test setup, and test procedures are also described. Sample results are shown, including the azimuthal variation of the measured control system stiffness for three different loadings and two different dynamic actuator settings. Finally, the azimuthal stiffness is converted to fixed system values using multi-blade transformations for input to comprehensive rotorcraft prediction codes.

  15. Piezoelectric Sensor to Measure Soft and Hard Stiffness with High Sensitivity for Ultrasonic Transducers.

    PubMed

    Li, Yan-Rui; Su, Chih-Chung; Lin, Wen-Jin; Chang, Shuo-Hung

    2015-01-01

    During dental sinus lift surgery, it is important to monitor the thickness of the remaining maxilla to avoid perforating the sinus membrane. Therefore, a sensor should be integrated into ultrasonic dental tools to prevent undesirable damage. This paper presents a piezoelectric (PZT) sensor installed in an ultrasonic transducer to measure the stiffness of high and low materials. Four design types using three PZT ring materials and a split PZT for actuator and sensor ring materials were studied. Three sensor locations were also examined. The voltage signals of the sensor and the displacement of the actuator were analyzed to distinguish the low and high stiffness. Using sensor type T1 made of the PZT-1 material and the front location A1 provided a high sensitivity of 2.47 Vm/kN. The experimental results demonstrated that our design can measure soft and hard stiffness. PMID:26110400

  16. Optoelectronic tweezers for the measurement of the relative stiffness of erythrocytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neale, Steven L.; Mody, Nimesh; Selman, Colin; Cooper, Jonathan M.

    2012-10-01

    In this paper we describe the first use of Optoelectronic Tweezers (OET), an optically controlled micromanipulation method, to measure the relative stiffness of erythrocytes in mice. Cell stiffness is an important measure of cell health and in the case of erythrocytes, the most elastic cells in the body, an increase in cell stiffness can indicate pathologies such as type II diabetes mellitus or hypertension (high blood pressure). OET uses a photoconductive device to convert an optical pattern into and electrical pattern. The electrical fields will create a dipole within any polarisable particles in the device, such as cells, and non-uniformities of the field can be used to place unequal forces onto each side of the dipole thus moving the particle. In areas of the device where there are no field gradients, areas of constant illumination, the force on each side of the dipole will be equal, keeping the cell stationary, but as there are opposing forces on each side of the cell it will be stretched. The force each cell will experience will differ slightly so the stretching will depend on the cells polarisability as well as its stiffness. Because of this a relative stiffness rather than absolute stiffness is measured. We show that with standard conditions (20Vpp, 1.5MHz, 10mSm-1 medium conductivity) the cell's diameter changes by around 10% for healthy mouse erythrocytes and we show that due to the low light intensities required for OET, relative to conventional optical tweezers, multiple cells can be measured simultaneously.

  17. Contact-flatted measurement of eye stiffness based on force-displacement relationship

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jin; Ma, Jianguo; Zhang, Xueyong

    2011-12-01

    This paper presents a noninvasive approach in vivo measurement of eye stiffness based on a force-displacement relationship, which is based on a new contact-probe method of simultaneously measuring the static force and displacement. First, a simple spherical eye model is introduced for deriving analytical eye stiffness when a static force is applied to an eye. Next, a measurement system for simultaneously measuring force and displacement when a probe is pressed onto the eye is presented. Static eye stiffness is defined which based on the measured force-displacement relationship. A photoelectric probe transducer acts as displacement detector. A 16-bit single-chip microprocessor with E2PROM in the electronic circuit played the role of a nucleus, which stored the program instructions and the interrelated data. Laboratory experiments were carried out on a simulated eyeball connected to a hydraulic manometer to obtain intraocular pressure at different levels. The experimental results show that the measured eye stiffness nicely matches the analytical result.

  18. Comparison of Measurements of Profile Stiffness in HSX to Nonlinear Gyrokinetic Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weir, Gavin

    2014-10-01

    Tokamaks and stellarators have observed significant differences in profile stiffness, defined as the ratio of the transient thermal diffusivity obtained from heat pulse propagation to the diffusivity obtained from steady-state power balance. Typically, stellarators have measured stiffness values below 2 and tokamaks have observed stiffness greater than 4. In this paper we present the first results on stiffness measurements in the quasihelically symmetric experiment HSX in which the neoclassical transport is comparable to that in a tokamak and turbulent transport dominates throughout the plasma. Electron Cyclotron Emission (ECE) is used to measure the local electron temperature perturbation from modulating the ECRH system on HSX. Spectral analysis of the ECE data yields a profile of the perturbed amplitude and a resulting transient electron thermal diffusivity that is close to the steady-state diffusivity. This evidence of a lack of stiffness in HSX agrees with the scaling of the steady-state heat flux with temperature gradient. The experimental data is compared to gyrokinetic calculations using the GENE code with two kinetic species. Linear calculations demonstrate that the Trapped Electron Mode (TEM) is the dominant long-wavelength microturbulence instability with growth rates that scale linearly with electron temperature gradient. Nonlinear gyrokinetic flux tube simulations indicate that the TEM contributes significantly to the saturated heat fluxes in HSX, shifting the transport-carrying wavenumbers to larger values than in typical Ion Temperature Gradient (ITG) turbulence. A set of nonlinear simulations are being executed, examining the saturated nonlinear heat flux as a function of the electron temperature gradient, to obtain a stiffness value from the simulations to compare with experimental results. This work is supported by DOE Grant DE-FG02-93ER54222.

  19. Liver Stiffness: A Significant Relationship with the Waveform Pattern in the Hepatic Vein.

    PubMed

    Sekimoto, Tadashi; Maruyama, Hitoshi; Kiyono, Soichiro; Kondo, Takayuki; Shimada, Taro; Takahashi, Masanori; Yokosuka, Osamu; Yamaguchi, Tadashi

    2015-07-01

    The aim of this prospective study was to assess the relationship between liver stiffness and hepatic vein waveform patterns in 42 patients with chronic hepatitis and 55 with cirrhosis. Liver stiffness measurement (LSM) values (FibroScan, Echosens, Paris, France) were significantly lower in the triphasic pattern group (11.3 8.4 kPa) than in the monophasic pattern (32.5 23.5 kPa, p = 0.001) and biphasic pattern (25.6 18.1 kPa, p = 0.001) groups, indicating no significant relationship with portal pressure. The ability to diagnose cirrhosis represented by the highest area under the receiver operating characteristic curve was 0.921 (83.6% sensitivity, 90.5% specificity, best cutoff value: 16.9 kPa) by LSM and 1.000 (best cutoff value: 19.4 kPa) by LSM combined with the monophasic pattern. This study revealed a close linkage between liver stiffness and hepatic vein waveform findings, resulting in a better understanding of hepatic vein hemodynamics and wider application of its analysis. PMID:25858000

  20. Requirements for nuclear localization of Lsm2-8p and competition between nuclear and cytoplasmic Lsm complexes

    PubMed Central

    Spiller, Michael P.; Reijns, Martin A. M.; Beggs, Jean D.

    2008-01-01

    Summary Lsm proteins are ubiquitous, multifunctional proteins that are involved in the processing and/or turnover of many RNAs. In eukaryotes, a hetero-heptameric complex of Lsm proteins (Lsm2-8p) affects the processing of small stable RNAs and pre-mRNAs in the nucleus, while a different hetero-heptameric complex of Lsm proteins (Lsm1-7p) promotes mRNA decapping and decay in the cytoplasm. These two complexes have six constituent proteins in common, yet localize to separate cellular compartments and perform apparently disparate functions. Little is known about the biogenesis of the Lsm complexes, or how they are recruited to different cellular compartments. We show that in yeast, the nuclear accumulation of Lsm proteins depends on complex formation and that the Lsm8p subunit plays a crucial role. The nuclear localization of Lsm8p is itself most strongly influenced by Lsm2p and Lsm4p, its presumed neighbors in the Lsm2-8p complex. Furthermore, over-expression and depletion experiments imply that Lsm1p and Lsm8p act competitively with respect to the localization of the two complexes, suggesting a potential mechanism for co-regulation of nuclear and cytoplasmic RNA processing. A shift of Lsm proteins from the nucleus to the cytoplasm under stress conditions indicates that this competition is biologically significant. PMID:18029398

  1. The Interday Measurement Consistency of and Relationships Between Hamstring and Leg Musculo-articular Stiffness.

    PubMed

    Waxman, Justin P; Schmitz, Randy J; Shultz, Sandra J

    2015-10-01

    Hamstring stiffness (K(HAM)) and leg stiffness (K(LEG)) are commonly examined relative to athletic performance and injury risk. Given these may be modifiable, it is important to understand day-to-day variations inherent in these measures before use in training studies. In addition, the extent to which K(HAM) and K(LEG) measure similar active stiffness characteristics has not been established. We investigated the interday measurement consistency of K(HAM) and K(LEG), and examined the extent to which K(LEG) predicted K(HAM) in 6 males and 9 females. K(HAM) was moderately consistent day-to-day (ICC(2,5) = .71; SEM = 76.3 Nm(-1)), and 95% limits of agreement (95% LOA) revealed a systematic bias with considerable absolute measurement error (95% LOA = 89.6 224.8 Nm(-1)). Day-to-day differences in procedural factors explained 59.4% of the variance in day-to-day differences in K(HAM). Bilateral and unilateral K(LEG) was more consistent (ICC(2,3) range = .87-.94; SEM range = 1.0-2.91 kNm(-1)) with lower absolute error (95% LOA bilateral= -2.0 10.3; left leg = -0.36 3.82; right leg = -1.05 3.61 kNm(-1)). K(LEG) explained 44% of the variance in K(HAM) (P < .01). Findings suggest that procedural factors must be carefully controlled to yield consistent and precise K(HAM) measures. The ease and consistency of K(LEG), and moderate correlation with K(HAM), may steer clinicians toward K(LEG) when measuring lower-extremity stiffness for screening studies and monitoring the effectiveness of training interventions over time. PMID:26035860

  2. Identification of substructure properties of railway tracks by dynamic stiffness measurements and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berggren, Eric G.; Kaynia, Amir M.; Dehlbom, Bjrn

    2010-09-01

    A new vehicle has been developed to measure dynamic vertical track stiffness while in motion. This technique allows the resonance behaviour of the track below 50 Hz to be measured. Soft soils like clay and peat are the main causes of resonance below 20 Hz. By means of simulation studies with the software VibTrain, soft soil resonance behaviour may be characterized using a few key parameters originating from track stiffness measurements, such as the minimum phase delay and corresponding frequency of the receptance transfer function. Statistical models are built to relate these key parameters with substructure properties, such as embankment thickness, shear wave velocity and thickness of the soft soil layer using pattern recognition methods. Two case studies are used to show the methodology, and the results are verified using Ground Penetration Radar (GPR) measurements and borehole investigations. Models are also developed from the statistical relationship between GPR-data and stiffness measurements. It is shown that embankment thickness is the easiest quantity to estimate, but indicative results are also presented for the other quantities (shear wave velocity and thickness of soil layer).

  3. A simple indentation device for measuring micrometer-scale tissue stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Levental, I; Levental, K R; Klein, E A; Assoian, R; Miller, R T; Wells, R G; Janmey, P A

    2012-01-01

    Mechanical properties of cells and extracellular matrices are critical determinants of function in contexts including oncogenic transformation, neuronal synapse formation, hepatic fibrosis and stem cell differentiation. The size and heterogeneity of biological specimens and the importance of measuring their mechanical properties under conditions that resemble their environments in vivo present a challenge for quantitative measurement. Centimeter-scale tissue samples can be measured by commercial instruments, whereas properties at the subcellular (nm) scale are accessible by atomic force microscopy, optical trapping, or magnetic bead microrheometry; however many tissues are heterogeneous on a length scale between micrometers and millimeters which is not accessible to most current instrumentation. The device described here combines two commercially available technologies, a micronewton resolution force probe and a micromanipulator for probing soft biological samples at sub-millimeter spatial resolution. Several applications of the device are described. These include the first measurement of the stiffness of an intact, isolated mouse glomerulus, quantification of the inner wall stiffness of healthy and diseased mouse aortas, and evaluation of the lateral heterogeneity in the stiffness of mouse mammary glands and rat livers with correlation of this heterogeneity with malignant or fibrotic pathology as evaluated by histology. PMID:21386443

  4. A simple indentation device for measuring micrometer-scale tissue stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levental, I.; Levental, K. R.; Klein, E. A.; Assoian, R.; Miller, R. T.; Wells, R. G.; Janmey, P. A.

    2010-05-01

    Mechanical properties of cells and extracellular matrices are critical determinants of function in contexts including oncogenic transformation, neuronal synapse formation, hepatic fibrosis and stem cell differentiation. The size and heterogeneity of biological specimens and the importance of measuring their mechanical properties under conditions that resemble their environments in vivo present a challenge for quantitative measurement. Centimeter-scale tissue samples can be measured by commercial instruments, whereas properties at the subcellular (nm) scale are accessible by atomic force microscopy, optical trapping, or magnetic bead microrheometry; however many tissues are heterogeneous on a length scale between micrometers and millimeters which is not accessible to most current instrumentation. The device described here combines two commercially available technologies, a micronewton resolution force probe and a micromanipulator for probing soft biological samples at sub-millimeter spatial resolution. Several applications of the device are described. These include the first measurement of the stiffness of an intact, isolated mouse glomerulus, quantification of the inner wall stiffness of healthy and diseased mouse aortas, and evaluation of the lateral heterogeneity in the stiffness of mouse mammary glands and rat livers with correlation of this heterogeneity with malignant or fibrotic pathology as evaluated by histology.

  5. Ultrasound Elastography: The New Frontier in Direct Measurement of Muscle Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Brandenburg, Joline E.; Eby, Sarah F.; Song, Pengfei; Zhao, Heng; Brault, Jeffrey S.; Chen, Shigao; An, Kai-Nan

    2014-01-01

    The use of brightness-mode ultrasound and Doppler ultrasound in physical medicine and rehabilitation has increased dramatically. The continuing evolution of ultrasound technology has also produced ultrasound elastography, a cutting-edge technology that can directly measure the mechanical properties of tissue, including muscle stiffness. Its real-time and direct measurements of muscle stiffness can aid the diagnosis and rehabilitation of acute musculoskeletal injuries and chronic myofascial pain. It can also help monitor outcomes of interventions affecting muscle in neuromuscular and musculoskeletal diseases, and it can better inform the functional prognosis. This technology has implications for even broader use of ultrasound in physical medicine and rehabilitation practice, but more knowledge about its uses and limitations is essential to its appropriate clinical implementation. In this review, we describe different ultrasound elastography techniques for studying muscle stiffness, including strain elastography, acoustic radiation force impulse imaging, and shear-wave elastography. We discuss the basic principles of these techniques, including the strengths and limitations of their measurement capabilities. We review the current muscle research, discuss physiatric clinical applications of these techniques, and note directions for future research. PMID:25064780

  6. Measurements of the exchange stiffness of YIG films using broadband ferromagnetic resonance techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klingler, S.; Chumak, A. V.; Mewes, T.; Khodadadi, B.; Mewes, C.; Dubs, C.; Surzhenko, O.; Hillebrands, B.; Conca, A.

    2015-01-01

    Measurements of the exchange stiffness D and the exchange constant A of Yttrium Iron Garnet (YIG) films are presented. YIG films with thicknesses from 0.9 to 2.6 m were investigated with a microwave setup in a wide frequency range from 5 to 40 GHz. The measurements were performed with the external static magnetic field applied in-plane and out-of-plane. The method of Schreiber and Frait (1996 Phys. Rev. B 54 6473), based on the analysis of the perpendicular standing spin wave mode frequency dependence on the applied out-of-plane magnetic field, was used to obtain the exchange stiffness D. This method was modified to avoid the influence of internal magnetic fields during the determination of the exchange stiffness. Furthermore, the method was also adapted for in-plane measurements. The results obtained using all methods are compared and values of D between (5.18 0.01) 10-17 T m2 and (5.40 0.02) 10-17 T m2 were obtained for different thicknesses. From this, the exchange constant was calculated to be A = (3.7 0.4) pJm-1.

  7. Role for LSM genes in the regulation of circadian rhythms.

    PubMed

    Perez-Santngelo, Soledad; Mancini, Estefana; Francey, Lauren J; Schlaen, Ruben Gustavo; Chernomoretz, Ariel; Hogenesch, John B; Yanovsky, Marcelo J

    2014-10-21

    Growing evidence suggests that core spliceosomal components differentially affect RNA processing of specific genes; however, whether changes in the levels or activities of these factors control specific signaling pathways is largely unknown. Here we show that some SM-like (LSM) genes, which encode core components of the spliceosomal U6 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein complex, regulate circadian rhythms in plants and mammals. We found that the circadian clock regulates the expression of LSM5 in Arabidopsis plants and several LSM genes in mouse suprachiasmatic nucleus. Further, mutations in LSM5 or LSM4 in Arabidopsis, or down-regulation of LSM3, LSM5, or LSM7 expression in human cells, lengthens the circadian period. Although we identified changes in the expression and alternative splicing of some core clock genes in Arabidopsis lsm5 mutants, the precise molecular mechanism causing period lengthening remains to be identified. Genome-wide expression analysis of either a weak lsm5 or a strong lsm4 mutant allele in Arabidopsis revealed larger effects on alternative splicing than on constitutive splicing. Remarkably, large splicing defects were not observed in most of the introns evaluated using RNA-seq in the strong lsm4 mutant allele used in this study. These findings support the idea that some LSM genes play both regulatory and constitutive roles in RNA processing, contributing to the fine-tuning of specific signaling pathways. PMID:25288739

  8. Pulmonary Vascular Stiffness: Measurement, Modeling, and Implications in Normal and Hypertensive Pulmonary Circulations

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, Kendall S.; Lammers, Steven R.; Shandas, Robin

    2014-01-01

    This article introduces the concept of pulmonary vascular stiffness, discusses its increasingly recognized importance as a diagnostic marker in the evaluation of pulmonary vascular disease, and describes methods to measure and model it clinically, experimentally, and computationally. It begins with a description of systems-level methods to evaluate pulmonary vascular compliance and recent clinical efforts in applying such techniques to better predict patient outcomes in pulmonary arterial hypertension. It then progresses from the systems-level to the local level, discusses proposed methods by which upstream pulmonary vessels increase in stiffness, introduces concepts around vascular mechanics, and concludes by describing recent work incorporating advanced numerical methods to more thoroughly evaluate changes in local mechanical properties of pulmonary arteries. PMID:23733649

  9. PORTAL HYPERTENSION CORRELATES WITH SPLENIC STIFFNESS AS MEASURED WITH MAGNETIC RESONANCE ELASTOGRAPHY

    PubMed Central

    Nedredal, Geir I.; Yin, Meng; McKenzie, Travis; Lillegard, Joseph; Luebke-Wheeler, Jennifer; Talwalkar, Jayant; Ehman, Richard; Nyberg, Scott L.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose To investigate the correlation between MRE assessed spleen stiffness and direct portal vein pressure gradient (D-HVPG) measurements in a large animal model of portal hypertension. Materials and Methods Cholestatic liver disease was established in adult canines by common bile duct ligation. A spin echo based EPI MRE sequence was used to acquire 3-D/3-axis abdominal MRE data at baseline, four weeks, and eight weeks. Liver biopsies, blood samples, and D-HVPG measurements were obtained simultaneously. Results Animals developed portal hypertension (D-HVPG: 11.05.1 mmHg) with only F1 fibrosis after four weeks. F3 fibrosis was confirmed after eight weeks despite no further rise in portal hypertension (D-HVPG: 11.33.2 mmHg). Mean stiffnesses of the spleen increased over two-fold from baseline (1.720.33 kPa) to four weeks (3.540.31 kPa), and stabilized at eight weeks (3.380.06 kPa) in a pattern consistent with changes in portal pressure. A positive correlation was observed between spleen stiffness and D-HVPG (r2 = 0.86, p<0.01). Conclusion These findings indicate a temporal relationship between portal hypertension and the development of liver fibrosis in a large animal model of cholestatic liver disease. The observed direct correlation between spleen stiffness and D-HVPG suggest a non-invasive MRE approach to diagnose and screen for portal hypertension. PMID:21608066

  10. A Novel Technique to Measure In Vivo Uterine Suspensory Ligament Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Tovia M.; Luo, Jiajia; Hsu, Yvonne; Ashton-Miller, James A.; Delancey, John O.L.

    2013-01-01

    Objective To describe a new computer-controlled research apparatus for measuring in vivo uterine ligament force-displacement behavior and stiffness and to present pilot data in women with and without prolapse. Study Design Seventeen women with varying uterine support underwent testing in the operating room (OR) after anesthetic induction. A tripod-mounted computer-controlled linear servoactuator was used to quantify force-displacement behavior of the cervix and supporting ligaments. The servoactuator applied a caudally-directed force to a tenaculum at 4 mm/s velocity until the traction force reached 17.8N (4 lbs.). Cervix location on POP-Q in clinic, in the OR at rest, and with minimal force (<1.1N), and maximum force (17.8N) was recorded. Ligament stiffness between minimum and maximum force was calculated. Results The mean (SD) subject age was 54.5 (12.7) years, parity 2.9 (1.1), BMI 29.0 (4.3) kg/m2, and POP-Q point C ?3.1 (3.9) cm. POP-Q point C was most strongly correlated with cervix location at maximum force (r=+0.68, p=.003) and at rest (r=+0.62, p=.009). Associations between cervix location at minimum force (r=+0.46, p=.059) and ligament stiffness (r= ?0.44,p=.079) were not statistically significant. Cervix location in the OR with minimal traction lay below the lowest point found on POP-Q for 13 women. Conclusions POP-Q point C was strongly correlated with cervix location at rest and at maximum traction force; however only 19% of the variation in POP-Q point C location was explained by ligament stiffness. The cervix location in the OR at minimal traction lay below POP-Q point C value in of women. PMID:23747493

  11. Simultaneous mechanical stiffness and electrical potential measurements of living vascular endothelial cells using combined atomic force and epifluorescence microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callies, Chiara; Schn, Peter; Liashkovich, Ivan; Stock, Christian; Kusche-Vihrog, Kristina; Fels, Johannes; Strter, Alexandra S.; Oberleithner, Hans

    2009-04-01

    The degree of mechanical stiffness of vascular endothelial cells determines the endogenous production of the vasodilating gas nitric oxide (NO). However, the underlying mechanisms are not yet understood. Experiments on vascular endothelial cells suggest that the electrical plasma membrane potential is involved in this regulatory process. To test this hypothesis we developed a technique that simultaneously measures the electrical membrane potential and stiffness of vascular endothelial cells (GM7373 cell line derived from bovine aortic endothelium) under continuous perfusion with physiological electrolyte solution. The cellular stiffness was determined by nano-indentation using an atomic force microscope (AFM) while the electrical membrane potential was measured with bis-oxonol, a voltage-reporting fluorescent dye. These two methods were combined using an AFM attached to an epifluorescence microscope. The electrical membrane potential and mechanical stiffness of the same cell were continuously recorded for a time span of 5 min. Fast fluctuations (in the range of seconds) of both the electrical membrane potential and mechanical stiffness could be observed that were not related to each other. In contrast, slow cell depolarizations (in the range of minutes) were paralleled by significant increases in mechanical stiffness. In conclusion, using the combined AFM-fluorescence technique we monitored for the first time simultaneously the electrical plasma membrane potential and mechanical stiffness in a living cell. Vascular endothelial cells exhibit oscillatory non-synchronized waves of electrical potential and mechanical stiffness. The sustained membrane depolarization, however, is paralleled by a concomitant increase of cell stiffness. The described method is applicable for any fluorophore, which opens new perspectives in biomedical research.

  12. Measuring Multi-Joint Stiffness during Single Movements: Numerical Validation of a Novel Time-Frequency Approach

    PubMed Central

    Piovesan, Davide; Pierobon, Alberto; DiZio, Paul; Lackner, James R.

    2012-01-01

    This study presents and validates a Time-Frequency technique for measuring 2-dimensional multijoint arm stiffness throughout a single planar movement as well as during static posture. It is proposed as an alternative to current regressive methods which require numerous repetitions to obtain average stiffness on a small segment of the hand trajectory. The method is based on the analysis of the reassigned spectrogram of the arm's response to impulsive perturbations and can estimate arm stiffness on a trial-by-trial basis. Analytic and empirical methods are first derived and tested through modal analysis on synthetic data. The technique's accuracy and robustness are assessed by modeling the estimation of stiffness time profiles changing at different rates and affected by different noise levels. Our method obtains results comparable with two well-known regressive techniques. We also test how the technique can identify the viscoelastic component of non-linear and higher than second order systems with a non-parametrical approach. The technique proposed here is very impervious to noise and can be used easily for both postural and movement tasks. Estimations of stiffness profiles are possible with only one perturbation, making our method a useful tool for estimating limb stiffness during motor learning and adaptation tasks, and for understanding the modulation of stiffness in individuals with neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:22448233

  13. Profile stiffness measurements in the Helically Symmetric experiment and comparison to nonlinear gyrokinetic calculations

    SciTech Connect

    Weir, G. M.; Faber, B. J.; Likin, K. M.; Talmadge, J. N.; Anderson, D. T.; Anderson, F. S. B.

    2015-05-15

    Stiffness measurements are presented in the quasi-helically symmetric experiment (HSX), in which the neoclassical transport is comparable to that in a tokamak and turbulent transport dominates throughout the plasma. Electron cyclotron emission is used to measure the local electron temperature response to modulated electron cyclotron resonant heating. The amplitude and phase of the heat wave through the steep electron temperature gradient (ETG) region of the plasma are used to determine a transient electron thermal diffusivity that is close to the steady-state diffusivity. The low stiffness in the region between 0.2 ≤ r/a ≤ 0.4 agrees with the scaling of the steady-state heat flux with temperature gradient in this region. These experimental results are compared to gyrokinetic calculations in a flux-tube geometry using the gyrokinetic electromagnetic numerical experiment code with two kinetic species. Linear simulations show that the ETG mode may be experimentally relevant within r/a ≤ 0.2, while the Trapped Electron Mode (TEM) is the dominant long-wavelength microturbulence instability across most of the plasma. The TEM is primarily driven by the density gradient. Non-linear calculations of the saturated heat flux driven by the TEM and ETG bracket the experimental heat flux.

  14. A Mixture of Experts Model for the Diagnosis of Liver Cirrhosis by Measuring the Liver Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Ji Hong; Song, Kijun

    2012-01-01

    Objectives The mixture-of-experts (ME) network uses a modular type of neural network architecture optimized for supervised learning. This model has been applied to a variety of areas related to pattern classification and regression. In this research, we applied a ME model to classify hidden subgroups and test its significance by measuring the stiffness of the liver as associated with the development of liver cirrhosis. Methods The data used in this study was based on transient elastography (Fibroscan) by Kim et al. We enrolled 228 HBsAg-positive patients whose liver stiffness was measured by the Fibroscan system during six months. Statistical analysis was performed by R-2.13.0. Results A classical logistic regression model together with an expert model was used to describe and classify hidden subgroups. The performance of the proposed model was evaluated in terms of the classification accuracy, and the results confirmed that the proposed ME model has some potential in detecting liver cirrhosis. Conclusions This method can be used as an important diagnostic decision support mechanism to assist physicians in the diagnosis of liver cirrhosis in patients. PMID:22509471

  15. Experimental measurements of hydrodynamic radial forces and stiffness matrices for a centrifugal pump-impeller

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chamieh, D. S.; Acosta, A. J.; Brennen, C. E.; Caughey, T. K.

    1985-01-01

    Measurements of the steady-state hydrodynamic forces on a centrifugal pump impeller are presented as a function of position within two geometrically different volutes. These correspond to the forces experienced by the impeller at zero whirl frequency. The hydrodynamic force matrices derived from these measurements exhibit both diagonal and off-diagonal terms of substantial magnitude. These terms are of the form which would tend to excite a whirl motion in a rotordynamic analysis of the pump; this may be the cause of 'rough running' reported in many pumps. Static pressure measurements in the impeller discharge flow show that the hydrodynamic force on the impeller contains a substantial component due to the nonisotropy of the net momentum flux leaving the impeller. A similar breakdown of the contributions to the stiffness matrices reveals that the major component of these matrices results from the nonisotropy of the momentum flux.

  16. Single-molecule measurement of the stiffness of the rigor myosin head.

    PubMed

    Lewalle, Alexandre; Steffen, Walter; Stevenson, Olivia; Ouyang, Zhenqian; Sleep, John

    2008-03-15

    The force-extension curve of single myosin subfragment-1 molecules, interacting in the rigor state with an actin filament, has been investigated at low [ATP] by applying a slow triangle-wave movement to the optical traps holding a bead-actin-bead dumbbell. In combination with a measurement of the overall stiffness of the dumbbell, this allowed characterization of the three extensible elements, the actin-bead links and the myosin. Simultaneously, another method, based on an analysis of bead position covariance, gave satisfactory agreement. The mean covariance-based estimate for the myosin stiffness was 1.79 pN/nm (SD = 0.7 pN/nm; SE = 0.06 pN/nm (n = 166 myosin molecules)), consistent with a recent report (1.7 pN/nm) from rabbit muscle fibers. In the triangle-wave protocol, the motion of the trapped beads during interactions was linear within experimental error over the physiological range of force applied to myosin (+/-10 pN), consistent with a Hookean model; any nonlinear terms could not be characterized. Bound states subjected to forces that resisted the working stroke (i.e., positive forces) detached at a significantly lower force than when subjected to negative forces, which is indicative of a strain-dependent dissociation rate. PMID:18065470

  17. Experimental measurements of hydrodynamic stiffness matrices for a centrifugal pump impeller

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chamieh, D. S.; Acosta, A. J.; Brennen, C. E.; Caughey, T. K.; Franz, R.

    1982-01-01

    The objective of the Rotor Force Test Facility at the California Institute of Technology is to artificially orbit the center of rotation of an impeller enclosed within a volute over a range of frequencies from zero to synchronous and to measure the resulting forces on the impeller. Preliminary data from the first stage experiments in which the shaft is orbited at low frequency is reported. Steady volute forces along with stiffness matrices due to the change in position of the rotor center are measured. Static pressure taps around the volute are used to obtain volute pressure distributions for various fixed positions of the impeller center and for various flow rates. Static pressure forces are calculated from these pressure distributions allowing a more complete analysis of the components of the impeller forces. Comparison is made with various existing theoretical and experimental results.

  18. Reliability of Unilateral Vertical Leg Stiffness Measures Assessed During Bilateral Hopping.

    PubMed

    Maloney, Sean J; Fletcher, Iain M; Richards, Joanna

    2015-10-01

    The assessment of vertical leg stiffness is an important consideration given its relationship to performance. Vertical stiffness is most commonly assessed during a bilateral hopping task. The current study sought to determine the intersession reliability, quantified by the coefficient of variation, of vertical stiffness during bilateral hopping when assessed for the left and right limbs independently, which had not been previously investigated. On 4 separate occasions, 10 healthy males performed 30 unshod bilateral hops on a dual force plate system with data recorded independently for the left and right limbs. Vertical stiffness was calculated as the ratio of peak ground reaction force to the peak negative displacement of the center of mass during each hop and was averaged over the sixth through tenth hops. For vertical stiffness, average coefficients of variation of 15.3% and 14.3% were observed for the left and right limbs, respectively. An average coefficient of variation of 14.7% was observed for bilateral vertical stiffness. The current study reports that calculations of unilateral vertical stiffness demonstrate reliability comparable to bilateral calculations. Determining unilateral vertical stiffness values and relative discrepancies may allow a coach to build a more complete stiffness profile of an individual athlete and better inform the training process. PMID:25880542

  19. Diabetes increases stiffness of live cardiomyocytes measured by atomic force microscopy nanoindentation.

    PubMed

    Benech, Juan C; Benech, Nicols; Zambrana, Ana I; Rauschert, Ins; Bervejillo, Vernica; Oddone, Natalia; Damin, Juan P

    2014-11-15

    Stiffness of live cardiomyocytes isolated from control and diabetic mice was measured using the atomic force microscopy nanoindentation method. Type 1 diabetes was induced in mice by streptozotocin administration. Histological images of myocardium from mice that were diabetic for 3 mo showed disorderly lineup of myocardial cells, irregularly sized cell nuclei, and fragmented and disordered myocardial fibers with interstitial collagen accumulation. Phalloidin-stained cardiomyocytes isolated from diabetic mice showed altered (i.e., more irregular and diffuse) actin filament organization compared with cardiomyocytes from control mice. Sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+)-ATPase (SERCA2a) pump expression was reduced in homogenates obtained from the left ventricle of diabetic animals compared with age-matched controls. The apparent elastic modulus (AEM) for live control or diabetic isolated cardiomyocytes was measured using the atomic force microscopy nanoindentation method in Tyrode buffer solution containing 1.8 mM Ca(2+) and 5.4 mM KCl (physiological condition), 100 nM Ca(2+) and 5.4 mM KCl (low extracellular Ca(2+) condition), or 1.8 mM Ca(2+) and 140 mM KCl (contraction condition). In the physiological condition, the mean AEM was 112% higher for live diabetic than control isolated cardiomyocytes (91 14 vs. 43 7 kPa). The AEM was also significantly higher in diabetic than control cardiomyocytes in the low extracellular Ca(2+) and contraction conditions. These findings suggest that the material properties of live cardiomyocytes were affected by diabetes, resulting in stiffer cells, which very likely contribute to high diastolic LV stiffness, which has been observed in vivo in some diabetes mellitus patients. PMID:25163520

  20. Biomechanics of hair cell kinocilia: experimental measurement of kinocilium shaft stiffness and base rotational stiffness with EulerBernoulli and Timoshenko beam analysis

    PubMed Central

    Spoon, Corrie; Grant, Wally

    2011-01-01

    Vestibular hair cell bundles in the inner ear contain a single kinocilium composed of a 9+2 microtubule structure. Kinocilia play a crucial role in transmitting movement of the overlying mass, otoconial membrane or cupula to the mechanotransducing portion of the hair cell bundle. Little is known regarding the mechanical deformation properties of the kinocilium. Using a force-deflection technique, we measured two important mechanical properties of kinocilia in the utricle of a turtle, Trachemys (Pseudemys) scripta elegans. First, we measured the stiffness of kinocilia with different heights. These kinocilia were assumed to be homogenous cylindrical rods and were modeled as both isotropic EulerBernoulli beams and transversely isotropic Timoshenko beams. Two mechanical properties of the kinocilia were derived from the beam analysis: flexural rigidity (EI) and shear rigidity (kGA). The Timoshenko model produced a better fit to the experimental data, predicting EI=10,400 pN ?m2 and kGA=247 pN. Assuming a homogenous rod, the shear modulus (G=1.9 kPa) was four orders of magnitude less than Young's modulus (E=14.1 MPa), indicating that significant shear deformation occurs within deflected kinocilia. When analyzed as an EulerBernoulli beam, which neglects translational shear, EI increased linearly with kinocilium height, giving underestimates of EI for shorter kinocilia. Second, we measured the rotational stiffness of the kinocilium insertion (?) into the hair cell's apical surface. Following BAPTA treatment to break the kinocilial links, the kinocilia remained upright, and ? was measured as 17747 pN ?m rad1. The mechanical parameters we quantified are important for understanding how forces arising from head movement are transduced and encoded by hair cells. PMID:21307074

  1. Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease as a Risk Factor of Arterial Stiffness Measured by the Cardioankle Vascular Index

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Goh Eun; Choi, Su-Yeon; Kim, Donghee; Kwak, Min-Sun; Park, Hyo Eun; Kim, Min-Kyung; Yim, Jeong Yoon

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is associated with risk factors for cardiovascular disease. The cardioankle vascular index (CAVI), a new measure of arterial stiffness, was recently developed and is independent of blood pressure. We investigated whether NAFLD is associated with arterial stiffness as measured using the CAVI in an apparently healthy population. A total of 2954 subjects without any known liver diseases were enrolled. NAFLD was diagnosed via typical ultrasonography. The clinical characteristics examined included age, sex, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), and the levels of aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol triglycerides, and glucose. Arterial stiffness was defined using an age- and sex-specific threshold of the upper quartile of the CAVI. NAFLD was found in 1249 (42.3%) of the analyzed subjects. Using an age-, sex-, and BMI-adjusted model, NAFLD was associated with a 42% increase in the risk for arterial stiffness (highest quartile of the CAVI). The risk for arterial stiffness increased according to the severity of NAFLD (adjusted odds ratio [95% confidence interval], 1.27 [1.02???1.57] vs 1.78 [1.37???2.31], mild vs moderate-to-severe, respectively). When adjusted for other risk factors, including BMI, WC, smoking status, diabetes, and hypertension, these relationships remained statistically significant. Patients with NAFLD are at a high risk for arterial stiffness regardless of classical risk factors. The presence of cardiometabolic risk factors may attenuate the prediction of arterial stiffness by means of NAFLD presence. Thus, physicians should carefully assess subjects with NAFLD for atherosclerosis and associated comorbidities. PMID:25816034

  2. Feasibility and repeatability for in vivo measurements of stiffness gradients in the canine gastrocnemius tendon using an acoustoelastic strain gauge

    PubMed Central

    Ellison, Michelle; Kobayashi, Hirohito; Delaney, Fern; Danielson, Kelson; Vanderby, Ray; Muir, Peter; Forrest, Lisa J

    2014-01-01

    B-mode ultrasound is an established imaging modality for evaluating canine tendon injury. However, full extent of tendon injury often remains difficult to estimate, as small changes in sonographic appearance are associated with large changes in biomechanical strength. The acoustoelastic strain gauge (ASG) is an ultrasound-based tissue evaluation technique that relates the change in echo intensity observed during relaxation or stretching of tendons to the tissue’s mechanical properties. This technique deduces stiffness gradient (the rate of change of normalized stiffness as a function of tissue strain) by analyzing the ultrasound dynamic images captured from gradually deforming tissue. Acoustoelastic strain gauge has been proven to accurately model strain and stiffness within tendons in vitro. To determine the feasibility and repeatability for in vivo ASG measurements of canine tendon function, stiffness gradients for the gastrocnemius tendons of ten clinically normal dogs were recorded by two non-independent observers at three sites (musculotendinous junction, mid tendon, and insertion). Average stiffness gradient indices (0.0132, 0.0141, 0.0136) and dispersion values (0.0053, 0.0054, 0.0057) for each site, respectively, were consistent with published mechanical properties for normal canine tendon. Mean differences of the average stiffness gradient index and dispersion value between observers and between limbs for each site were less than 16%. Using interclass coefficients (ICC), intraobserver (ICC 0.79–0.98) and interobserver (ICC 0.77–0.95) reproducibility was good to excellent. Right and left limb values were symmetric (ICC 0.74–0.92). Findings from this study indicated that ASG is a feasible and repeatable technique for measuring stiffness gradients in canine tendons. PMID:23663072

  3. Face-Referenced Measurement of Perioral Stiffness and Speech Kinematics in Parkinson's Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chu, Shin Ying; Barlow, Steven M.; Lee, Jaehoon

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Perioral biomechanics, labial kinematics, and associated electromyographic signals were sampled and characterized in individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) as a function of medication state. Method: Passive perioral stiffness was sampled using the OroSTIFF system in 10 individuals with PD in a medication ON and a medication OFF state

  4. Face-Referenced Measurement of Perioral Stiffness and Speech Kinematics in Parkinson's Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chu, Shin Ying; Barlow, Steven M.; Lee, Jaehoon

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Perioral biomechanics, labial kinematics, and associated electromyographic signals were sampled and characterized in individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) as a function of medication state. Method: Passive perioral stiffness was sampled using the OroSTIFF system in 10 individuals with PD in a medication ON and a medication OFF state…

  5. Noninvasive pulse transit time measurement for arterial stiffness monitoring in microgravity.

    PubMed

    McCall, Corey; Rostosky, Rea; Wiard, Richard M; Inan, Omer T; Giovangrandi, Laurent; Cuttino, Charles Marsh; Kovacs, Gregory T A

    2015-08-01

    The use of a noninvasive hemodynamic monitor to estimate arterial stiffness, by measurement of pulse transit time (PTT), was demonstrated in microgravity. The monitor's utility for space applications was shown by establishing the correlation between ground-based and microgravity-based measurements. The system consists of a scale-based ballistocardiogram (BCG) and a toe-mounted photoplethysmogram (PPG). PTT was measured from the BCG I-wave to the intersecting tangents of the first trough and maximum first derivative of the PPG waveforms of each subject. The system was tested on a recent series of parabolic flights in which the PTT of nine subjects was measured on the ground and in microgravity. An average of 60.2 ms PTT increase from ground to microgravity environments was shown, and was consistent across all test subjects (standard deviation = 32.9 ms). This increase in PTT could be explained by a number of factors associated with microgravity and reported in previous research, including elimination of hydrostatic pressure, reduction of intrathoracic pressure, and reduction of mean arterial pressure induced by vasodilation. PMID:26737764

  6. Elastic properties of organ of Corti tissues from point-stiffness measurement and inverse analysis.

    PubMed

    Zagadou, B F; Barbone, P E; Mountain, D C

    2014-04-11

    We describe a method to use point-stiffness (PtSt) measurements, i.e., indentation measurements, to obtain elastic moduli of different organ of Corti (OC) tissues. A detailed finite element (FE) model of the OC is used to account for geometric effects in the indentation measurements. We also present a sensitivity analysis, performed within a Bayesian estimation framework, that can be used to improve experimental design. The sensitivity analysis shows that the basilar membrane (BM) PtSt is most sensitive to changes in the BM properties and to changes in the pillar cells (PC) properties. This result suggests that the BM and the PC dominate the macromechanics of the OC. The most likely values of the Young?s modulus predicted for the middle turn for the BM arcuate, BM pectinate, and the PC are found to be 935 KPa (range 640-1360 KPa), 300 KPa (range 190-460 KPa), and 3 GPa (range 1-9 GPa), respectively. PMID:24629928

  7. Evaluation of stiffness changes in a high-rise building by measurements of lateral displacements using GPS technology.

    PubMed

    Choi, Se Woon; Kim, Ill Soo; Park, Jae Hwan; Kim, Yousok; Sohn, Hong Gyoo; Park, Hyo Seon

    2013-01-01

    The outrigger truss system is one of the most frequently used lateral load resisting structural systems. However, little research has been reported on the effect of installation of outrigger trusses on improvement of lateral stiffness of a high-rise building through full-scale measurements. In this paper, stiffness changes of a high-rise building due to installation of outrigger trusses have been evaluated by measuring lateral displacements using a global positioning system (GPS). To confirm the error range of the GPS measurement system used in the full-scale measurement tests, the GPS displacement monitoring system is investigated through a free vibration test of the experimental model. Then, for the evaluation of lateral stiffness of a high-rise building under construction, the GPS displacement monitoring system is applied to measurements of lateral displacements of a 66-story high-rise building before and after installation of outrigger truss. The stiffness improvement of the building before and after the installation is confirmed through the changes of the natural frequencies and the ratios of the base shear forces to the roof displacements. PMID:24233025

  8. Arabidopsis thaliana LSM proteins function in mRNA splicing and degradation

    PubMed Central

    Golisz, Anna; Sikorski, Pawel J.; Kruszka, Katarzyna; Kufel, Joanna

    2013-01-01

    Sm-like (Lsm) proteins have been identified in all organisms and are related to RNA metabolism. Here, we report that Arabidopsis nuclear AtLSM8 protein, as well as AtLSM5, which localizes to both the cytoplasm and nucleus, function in pre-mRNA splicing, while AtLSM5 and the exclusively cytoplasmic AtLSM1 contribute to 5′–3′ mRNA decay. In lsm8 and sad1/lsm5 mutants, U6 small nuclear RNA (snRNA) was reduced and unspliced mRNA precursors accumulated, whereas mRNA stability was mainly affected in plants lacking AtLSM1 and AtLSM5. Some of the mRNAs affected in lsm1a lsm1b and sad1/lsm5 plants were also substrates of the cytoplasmic 5′–3′ exonuclease AtXRN4 and of the decapping enzyme AtDCP2. Surprisingly, a subset of substrates was also stabilized in the mutant lacking AtLSM8, which supports the notion that plant mRNAs are actively degraded in the nucleus. Localization of LSM components, purification of LSM-interacting proteins as well as functional analyses strongly suggest that at least two LSM complexes with conserved activities in RNA metabolism, AtLSM1-7 and AtLSM2-8, exist also in plants. PMID:23620288

  9. Strain measurement on stiff structures: experimental evaluation of three integrated measurement principles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rausch, J.; Hatzfeld, C.; Karsten, R.; Kraus, R.; Millitzer, J.; Werthschtzky, R.

    2012-06-01

    This paper presents an experimental evaluation of three different strain measuring principles. Mounted on a steel beam resembling a car engine mount, metal foil strain gauges, piezoresistive silicon strain gauges and piezoelectric patches are investigated to measure structure-borne forces to control an active mounting structure. FEA simulation determines strains to be measured in the range of 10-8 up to 10-5 m m-1. These low strains cannot be measured with conventional metal foil strain gauges, as shown in the experiment conducted. Both piezoresistive and piezoelectric gauges show good results compared to a conventional piezoelectric force sensor. Depending on bandwidth, overload capacity and primary electronic costs, these principles seem to be worth considering in an adaptronic system design. These parameters are described in detail for the principles investigated.

  10. Measuring the effects of aging and sex on regional brain stiffness with MR elastography in healthy older adults.

    PubMed

    Arani, Arvin; Murphy, Matthew C; Glaser, Kevin J; Manduca, Armando; Lake, David S; Kruse, Scott A; Jack, Clifford R; Ehman, Richard L; Huston, John

    2015-05-01

    Changes in tissue composition and cellular architecture have been associated with neurological disease, and these in turn can affect biomechanical properties. Natural biological factors such as aging and an individual's sex also affect underlying tissue biomechanics in different brain regions. Understanding the normal changes is necessary before determining the efficacy of stiffness imaging for neurological disease diagnosis and therapy monitoring. The objective of this study was to evaluate global and regional changes in brain stiffness as a function of age and sex, using improved MRE acquisition and processing that have been shown to provide median stiffness values that are typically reproducible to within 1% in global measurements and within 2% for regional measurements. Furthermore, this is the first study to report the effects of age and sex over the entire cerebrum volume and over the full frontal, occipital, parietal, temporal, deep gray matter/white matter (insula, deep gray nuclei and white matter tracts), and cerebellum volumes. In 45 volunteers, we observed a significant linear correlation between age and brain stiffness in the cerebrum (P<.0001), frontal lobes (P<.0001), occipital lobes (P=.0005), parietal lobes (P=.0002), and the temporal lobes (P<.0001) of the brain. No significant linear correlation between brain stiffness and age was observed in the cerebellum (P=.74), and the sensory-motor regions (P=.32) of the brain, and a weak linear trend was observed in the deep gray matter/white matter (P=.075). A multiple linear regression model predicted an annual decline of 0.011 0.002 kPa in cerebrum stiffness with a theoretical median age value (76 years old) of 2.56 0.08 kPa. Sexual dimorphism was observed in the temporal (P=.03) and occipital (P=.001) lobes of the brain, but no significant difference was observed in any of the other brain regions (P>.20 for all other regions). The model predicted female occipital and temporal lobes to be 0.23 kPa and 0.09 kPa stiffer than males of the same age, respectively. This study confirms that as the brain ages, there is softening; however, the changes are dependent on region. In addition, stiffness effects due to sex exist in the occipital and temporal lobes. PMID:25698157

  11. Face-Referenced Measurement of Perioral Stiffness and Speech Kinematics in Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Barlow, Steven M.; Lee, Jaehoon

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Perioral biomechanics, labial kinematics, and associated electromyographic signals were sampled and characterized in individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) as a function of medication state. Method Passive perioral stiffness was sampled using the OroSTIFF system in 10 individuals with PD in a medication ON and a medication OFF state and compared to 10 matched controls. Perioral stiffness, derived as the quotient of resultant force and interoral angle span, was modeled with regression techniques. Labial movement amplitudes and integrated electromyograms from select lip muscles were evaluated during syllable production using a 4-D computerized motion capture system. Results Multilevel regression modeling showed greater perioral stiffness in patients with PD, consistent with the clinical correlate of rigidity. In the medication-OFF state, individuals with PD manifested greater integrated electromyogram levels for the orbicularis oris inferior compared to controls, which increased further after consumption of levodopa. Conclusions This study illustrates the application of biomechanical, electrophysiological, and kinematic methods to better understand the pathophysiology of speech motor control in PD. PMID:25629806

  12. Assessing the small-strain soil stiffness for offshore wind turbines based on in situ seismic measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Versteijlen, W. G.; van Dalen, K. N.; Metrikine, A. V.; Hamre, L.

    2014-06-01

    The fundamental natural frequency as measured on installed offshore wind turbines is significantly higher than its designed value, and it is expected that the explanation for this can be found in the currently adopted modeling of soil-structure interaction. The small-strain soil stiffness is an important design parameter, as it has a defining influence on the first natural frequency of these structures. In this contribution, in situ seismic measurements are used to derive the small-strain shear modulus of soil as input for 3D soil-structure interaction models to assess the initial soil stiffness at small strains for offshore wind turbine foundations. A linear elastic finite element model of a half-space of solids attached to a pile is used to derive an equivalent first mode shape of the foundation. The second model extends the first one by introducing contact elements between pile and soil, to take possible slip and gap-forming into account. The deflections derived with the 3D models are smaller than those derived with the p- y curve design code. This higher stiffness is in line with the higher measured natural frequencies. Finally a method is suggested to translate the response of 3D models into 1D engineering models of a beam laterally supported by uncoupled distributed springs.

  13. Growth, spectral, thermal, optical, mechanical and etching studies of L-lysine semi-maleate (L-LSM) single crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasudevan, V.; Renuka, N.; Ramesh Babu, R.; Ramamurthi, K.

    2015-02-01

    Organic nonlinear optical material, L-lysine semi-maleate (L-LSM) single crystals were grown by slow cooling solution growth technique. The crystal system of grown L-LSM was confirmed by single crystal and powder X-ray diffraction analyzes. Functional groups of the grown crystal have been identified by Fourier Transform Infrared spectral analysis. The proton and carbon NMR spectral studies confirm the presence of hydrogen and carbon in the grown L-LSM. The melting and thermal decomposition temperatures of the crystal were determined using thermogravimetric (TG) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) analyses. Optical transparency, second harmonic generation efficiency, micro hardness, dielectric constant and loss, refractive index and birefringence have also been measured. Further, the growth patterns and dislocations present in the grown crystal are studied.

  14. Correlation of Arterial Stiffness and Bone Mineral Density by Measuring Brachial-Ankle Pulse Wave Velocity in Healthy Korean Women

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Nam-Lee

    2015-01-01

    Background An association between arterial stiffness and osteoporosis has previously been reported. Therefore, we investigated the relationship between arterial stiffness, measured by brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity, and bone mineral density in a sample of healthy women undergoing routine medical checkup. Methods We retrospectively reviewed the medical charts of 135 women who had visited the Health Promotion Center (between May 2009 and December 2012). Brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity was measured using an automatic wave analyzer. Bone mineral density of the lumbar spine (L1-L4) and femur was measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Metabolic syndrome was defined according to National Cholesterol Education Program-Adult Treatment Panel III criteria, using body mass index >25 kg/m2 instead of waist circumference >88.9 cm. Results Pearson's correlation analysis revealed significant inverse relationships between pulse wave velocity and bone mineral density of the lumbar spine (r=-0.335, P<0.001), femur neck (r=-0.335, P<0.001), and total femur (r=-0.181, P=0.04). Pulse wave velocity showed the strongest association with age (r=0.586, P<0.001). Multiple regression analysis identified an independent relationship between pulse wave velocity and lumbar spine bone mineral density in women after adjusting for age, metabolic syndrome, body mass index, smoking status, alcohol intake, and exercise (r=-0.229, P=0.01). Conclusion This study confirmed an association between arterial stiffness and bone mineral density in women. PMID:26634100

  15. Comparison of the Reliability of Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Imaging and Supersonic Shear Imaging in Measurement of Liver Stiffness.

    PubMed

    Woo, Hyunsik; Lee, Jae Young; Yoon, Jeong Hee; Kim, Won; Cho, Belong; Choi, Byung Ihn

    2015-12-01

    Purpose To compare the reliability of acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) imaging and supersonic shear imaging (SSI) in measurement of liver stiffness. Materials and Methods This study was approved by the institutional review board, and written informed consent was obtained for all patients. Seventy-nine patients (25 healthy patients, 26 with Child-Pugh class A, and 28 with Child-Pugh class B or C) were enrolled and analyzed from April 2012 to April 2013. In each patient, three abdominal radiologists performed nine measurements of hepatic shear-wave speed with both ARFI imaging and SSI on the same day. Four weeks later, a second session was performed with the same protocol. Interobserver and intraobserver agreements were calculated by using intraclass correlation coefficients. Technical failures and measurement time were evaluated. Results There were four technical failures in the SSI group and one in the ARFI group (P = .375). The overall interobserver agreement of ARFI imaging was significantly higher than that of SSI (0.941 vs 0.828, P < .001). The overall intraobserver agreement of ARFI imaging was significantly higher than that of SSI (0.915 vs 0.829, P < .001). The overall shear-wave speed measured with SSI was higher than that measured with ARFI imaging (2.04 m/sec 0.88 vs 1.80 m/sec 0.81, P < .001). The measurement time of SSI was longer than that of ARFI imaging (310.8 seconds 88.5 vs 84.5 seconds 15.4, P < .001). Conclusion ARFI imaging was more reliable than SSI in measurement of liver stiffness. The hepatic shear-wave speed measured with SSI was higher than that measured with ARFI imaging, which means that the shear-wave speeds measured with ARFI imaging and SSI cannot be used interchangeably. () RSNA, 2015. PMID:26147680

  16. Right-Left Differences in Knee Extension Stiffness for the Normal Rat Knee: In Vitro Measurements Using a New Testing Apparatus.

    PubMed

    Markolf, Keith L; Evseenko, Denis; Petrigliano, Frank

    2016-04-01

    Knee stiffness following joint injury or immobilization is a common clinical problem, and the rat has been used as a model for studies related to joint stiffness and limitation of motion. Knee stiffness measurements have been reported for the anesthetized rat, but it is difficult to separate the contributions of muscular and ligamentous restraints to the recorded values. in vitro testing of isolated rat knees devoid of musculature allows measurement of joint structural properties alone. In order to measure the effects of therapeutic or surgical interventions designed to alter joint stiffness, the opposite extremity is often used as a control. However, right-left stiffness differences for the normal rat knee have not been reported in the literature. If stiffness changes observed for a treatment group are within the normal right-left variation, validity of the results could be questioned. The objectives of this study were to utilize a new testing apparatus to measure right-left stiffness differences during knee extension in a population of normal rat knees and to document repeatability of the stiffness measurements on successive testing days. Moment versus rotation curves were recorded for 15 right-left pairs of normal rat knees on three consecutive days, with overnight specimen storage in a refrigerator. Each knee was subjected to ten loading-unloading cycles, with the last loading curve used for analysis. Angular rotation (AR), defined here as the change in flexion-extension angle from a specified applied joint moment, is commonly used as a measure of overall joint stiffness. For these tests, ARs were measured from the recorded test curves with a maximum applied extension moment of 100?g cm. Mean rotations for testing days 2 and 3 were 0.81-1.25?deg lower (p?stiffness differences should be considered when interpreting the results of knee treatment studies designed to alter knee stiffness when using the opposite extremity as a control. PMID:26863930

  17. Design of an automated device to measure sagittal plane stiffness of an articulated ankle-foot orthosis.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Toshiki; Leung, Aaron K L; Akazawa, Yasushi; Naito, Hisashi; Tanaka, Masao; Hutchins, Stephen W

    2010-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to design a new automated stiffness measurement device which could perform a simultaneous measurement of both dorsi- and plantarflexion angles and the corresponding resistive torque around the rotational centre of an articulated ankle-foot orthosis (AAFO). This was achieved by controlling angular velocities and range of motion in the sagittal plane. The device consisted of a hydraulic servo fatigue testing machine, a torque meter, a potentiometer, a rotary plate and an upright supporter to enable an AAFO to be attached to the device via a surrogate shank. The accuracy of the device in reproducing the range of motion and angular velocity was within 4% and 1% respectively in the range of motion of 30 (15 plantarflexion to 15 dorsiflexion) at the angular velocity of 10/s, while that in the measurement of AAFO torque was within 8% at the 0 position. The device should prove useful to assist an orthotist or a manufacturer to quantify the stiffness of an AAFO and inform its clinical use. PMID:20681928

  18. Feasibility study of superconducting LSM rocket launcher system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoshida, Kinjiro; Ohashi, Takaaki; Shiraishi, Katsuto; Takami, Hiroshi

    1994-01-01

    A feasibility study is presented concerning an application of a superconducting linear synchronous motor (LSM) to a large-scale rocket launcher, whose acceleration guide tube of LSM armature windings is constructed 1,500 meters under the ground. The rocket is released from the linear launcher just after it gets to a peak speed of about 900 kilometers per hour, and it flies out of the guide tube to obtain the speed of 700 kilometers per hour at the height of 100 meters above ground. The linear launcher is brought to a stop at the ground surface for a very short time of 5 seconds by a quick control of deceleration. Very large current variations in the single-layer windings of the LSM armature, which are produced at the higher speed region of 600 to 900 kilometers per hour, are controlled successfully by adopting the double-layer windings. The proposed control method makes the rocket launcher ascend stably in the superconducting LSM system, controlling the Coriolis force.

  19. Stiff railguns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weldon, W. F.; Bacon, J. L.; Weeks, D. A.; Zowarka, R. C., Jr.

    1991-01-01

    Stiff guns have been operated with both plasma and solid armatures. A performance gain was seen in the plasma railgun as stiffness was increased. A stiff gun will help to maintain the bore shape and preserve the integrity of the seam between rail and insulator under the extreme asymmetric loads sustained during high-pressure operation. The hydraulically preloaded moly and ceramic gun has been fired six times at pressures as high as 87 ksi, and the bore still holds roughing vacuum up to two hours after the test. The elimination of seam leakage helps control bore erosion associated with plasma reconstitution from the rail and plasma perturbation that might result in loss-initiating instabilities. Reduced rail deflection allows solid and transitioning armatures to track the bore surface. An analysis of the strain energy associated with the deflection of the railgun structure is presented, and this mechanism is found to be a small fraction of the energy associated with armature loss and the rail resistive loss.

  20. Variation in within-bone stiffness measured by nanoindentation in mice bred for high levels of voluntary wheel running

    PubMed Central

    Middleton, Kevin M; Goldstein, Beth D; Guduru, Pradeep R; Waters, Julie F; Kelly, Scott A; Swartz, Sharon M; Garland Jr, T

    2010-01-01

    The hierarchical structure of bone, involving micro-scale organization and interaction of material components, is a critical determinant of macro-scale mechanics. Changes in whole-bone morphology in response to the actions of individual genes, physiological loading during life, or evolutionary processes, may be accompanied by alterations in underlying mineralization or architecture. Here, we used nanoindentation to precisely measure compressive stiffness in the femoral mid-diaphysis of mice that had experienced 37 generations of selective breeding for high levels of voluntary wheel running (HR). Mice (n= 48 total), half from HR lines and half from non-selected control (C) lines, were divided into two experimental groups, one with 1314 weeks of access to a running wheel and one housed without wheels (n = 12 in each group). At the end of the experiment, gross and micro-computed tomography (?CT)-based morphometric traits were measured, and reduced elastic modulus (Er) was estimated separately for four anatomical quadrants of the femoral cortex: anterior, posterior, lateral, and medial. Two-way, mixed-model analysis of covariance (ancova) showed that body mass was a highly significant predictor of all morphometric traits and that structural change is more apparent at the ?CT level than in conventional morphometrics of whole bones. Both linetype (HR vs. C) and presence of the mini-muscle phenotype (caused by a Mendelian recessive allele and characterized by a ?50% reduction in mass of the gastrocnemius muscle complex) were significant predictors of femoral cortical cross-sectional anatomy. Measurement of reduced modulus obtained by nanoindentation was repeatable within a single quadrant and sensitive enough to detect inter-individual differences. Although we found no significant effects of linetype (HR vs. C) or physical activity (wheel vs. no wheel) on mean stiffness, anterior and posterior quadrants were significantly stiffer (P< 0.0001) than medial and lateral quadrants (32.67 and 33.09 GPa vs. 29.78 and 30.46 GPa, respectively). Our findings of no significant difference in compressive stiffness in the anterior and posterior quadrants agree with previous results for mice, but differ from those for large mammals. Integrating these results with others from ongoing research on these mice, we hypothesize that the skeletons of female HR mice may be less sensitive to the effects of chronic exercise, due to decreased circulating leptin levels and potentially altered endocannabinoid signaling. PMID:20402827

  1. A pilot study of scanning acoustic microscopy as a tool for measuring arterial stiffness in aortic biopsies

    PubMed Central

    Akhtar, Riaz; Cruickshank, J. Kennedy; Zhao, Xuegen; Derby, Brian; Weber, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    This study explores the use of scanning acoustic microscopy (SAM) as a potential tool for characterisation of arterial stiffness using aortic biopsies. SAM data is presented for human tissue collected during aortic bypass graft surgery for multi-vessel coronary artery disease. Acoustic wave speed as determined by SAM was compared to clinical data for the patients namely, pulse wave velocity (PWV), blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels. There was no obvious trend relating acoustic wave speed to PWV values, and an inverse relationship was found between systolic and diastolic blood pressure and acoustic wave speed. However, in patients with a higher cholesterol or glucose level, the acoustic wave speed increased. A more detailed investigation is needed to relate SAM data to clinical measurements. PMID:26985242

  2. LSM-YSZ Cathodes with Reaction-Infiltrated Nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Chun; Sholklapper, Tal Z.; Jacobson, Craig P.; Visco, StevenJ.; De Jonghe, Lutgard C.

    2006-01-31

    To improve the LSM-YSZ cathode performance of intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), Sm0.6Sr0.4CoO3-sigma (SSC) perovskite nanoparticles are incorporated into the cathodes by a reaction-infiltration process. The SSC particles are {approx}20 to 80nm in diameter, and intimately adhere to the pore walls of the preformed LSM-YSZ cathodes. The SSC particles dramatically enhance single-cell performance with a 97 percent H2+3 percent H2O fuel, between 600 C and 800 C. Consideration of a simplified TPB (triple phase boundary) reaction geometry indicates that the enhancement may be attributed to the high electrocatalytic activity of SSC for electrochemical reduction of oxygen in a region that can be located a small distance away from the strict triple phase boundaries. The implication of this work for developing high-performance electrodes is also discussed.

  3. 3-D FEM field analysis in controlled-PM LSM for Maglev vehicle

    SciTech Connect

    Yoshida, Kinjiro; Lee, J.; Kim, Y.J.

    1997-03-01

    The magnetic fields in the controlled-PM LSM for Maglev vehicle, of which the width is not only finite with lateral edges, but also an effective electric-airgap is very large, are accurately analyzed by using 3-D FEM. The lateral airgap-flux due to lateral edges of the machine is made clear and its effects on thrust and lift forces are evaluated quantitatively from the comparison with 2-D FEA. The accuracy of 3-D FEA is verified by comparing the calculated results with the measured values.

  4. Reliability of Abdominal Muscle Stiffness Measured Using Elastography during Trunk Rehabilitation Exercises.

    PubMed

    MacDonald, David; Wan, Alan; McPhee, Megan; Tucker, Kylie; Hug, Franois

    2016-04-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the intra-session and inter-rater reliability of shear modulus measured in abdominal muscles during two commonly used trunk stability exercises. Thirty healthy volunteers performed a series of abdominal hollow and abdominal brace tasks. Supersonic shear imaging was used to measure the shear modulus (considered an index of muscle tension) of the four anterior trunk muscles: obliquus externus abdominis, obliquus internus abdominis, transversus abdominis and rectus abdominis. Because of measurement artifacts, internus abdominis and transversus abdominis data were not analyzed for 36.7% and 26.7% of the participants, respectively. These participants exhibited thicker superficial fat layers than the others. For the remaining participants, fair to excellent intra-session and inter-rater reliability was observed with moderate to high intra-class coefficients (0.45-0.97) and low to moderate standard error of measurement values (0.38-3.53kPa). Reliability values were consistently greater for superficial than for deeper muscles. PMID:26746381

  5. The Effect of Regular Exercise Training During Pregnancy on Postpartum Brachial-Ankle Pulse Wave Velocity, a Measure of Arterial Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Kawabata, Ikuno; Nakai, Akihito; Sekiguchi, Atsuko; Inoue, Yuko; Takeshita, Toshiyuki

    2012-01-01

    The aim of our study was to use brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV) measurements to noninvasively assess the effect of exercise training on arterial stiffness in normal pregnant women. Arterial stiffness was assessed at the beginning of the early second trimester of pregnancy and 1 month after delivery in 17 women with normal singleton pregnancies who exercised regularly throughout pregnancy: 81 matched controls were used for comparison. No significant differences were observed in baPWV between the exercise and control groups at the beginning of the second trimester. BaPWV 1 month after delivery (1160.2 ± 109.1 cm·second-1) was signifi-cantly higher than that in the early second trimester (1116.7 ± 87.9 cm·second-1) in the control group (indicating increased arterial stiffness), but not in the exercise group (1145.9 ± 88.1 cm/second vs 1122.7 ± 100.2 cm·second-1, respectively: not significant). The results indicated that regular maternal exercise training decreased arterial stiffness in normal pregnant women, which suggests that regular exercise may help prevent hypertensive disorders during pregnancy. Key pointsRegular maternal exercise training decreased arterial stiffness in normal pregnant women, which suggests that regular exercise may help prevent hypertensive disorders during pregnancy.Maternal exercise suggests that disturbances in arterial function during pregnancy may be prevented by regular exercise. PMID:24149358

  6. In situ measurements of human articular cartilage stiffness by means of a scanning force microscope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Imer, Raphal; Akiyama, Terunobu; de Rooij, Nico F.; Stolz, Martin; Aebi, Ueli; Kilger, Robert; Friederich, Niklaus F.; Wirz, Dieter; Daniels, A. U.; Staufer, Urs

    2007-03-01

    Osteoarthritis is a painful and disabling progressive joint disease, characterized by degradation of articular cartilage. In order to study this disease at early stages, we have miniaturized and integrated a complete scanning force microscope into a standard arthroscopic device fitting through a standard orthopedic canula. This instrument will allow orthopedic surgeons to measure the mechanical properties of articular cartilage at the nanometer and micrometer scale in-vivo during a standard arthroscopy. An orthopedic surgeon assessed the handling of the instrument. First measurements of the elasticity-modulus of human cartilage were recorded in a cadaver knee non minimal invasive. Second, minimally invasive experiments were performed using arthroscopic instruments. Load-displacement curves were successfully recorded.

  7. Beetle adhesive hairs differ in stiffness and stickiness: in vivo adhesion measurements on individual setae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bullock, James M. R.; Federle, Walter

    2011-05-01

    Leaf beetles are able to climb on smooth and rough surfaces using arrays of micron-sized adhesive hairs (setae) of varying morphology. We report the first in vivo adhesive force measurements of individual setae in the beetle Gastrophysa viridula, using a smooth polystyrene substrate attached to a glass capillary micro-cantilever. The beetles possess three distinct adhesive pads on each leg which differ in function and setal morphology. Visualisation of pull-offs allowed forces to be measured for each tarsal hair type. Male discoidal hairs adhered with the highest forces (919 104 nN, mean SE), followed by spatulate (582 59 nN) and pointed (127 19 nN) hairs. Discoidal hairs were stiffer in the normal direction (0.693 0.111 N m-1) than spatulate (0.364 0.039 N m-1) or pointed (0.192 0.044 N m-1) hairs. The greater adhesion on smooth surfaces and the higher stability of discoidal hairs help male beetles to achieve strong adhesion on the elytra of females during copulation. A comparison of pull-off forces measured for single setae and whole pads (arrays) revealed comparable levels of adhesive stress. This suggests that beetles are able to achieve equal load sharing across their adhesive pads so that detachment through peeling is prevented.

  8. Inverse measurement of stiffness by the normalization technique for J-integral fracture toughness

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, Eric

    2012-06-07

    The single specimen normalization technique for J-integral fracture toughness has been successfully employed by several researchers to study the strongly non-linear fracture response of ductile semicrystalline polymers. As part of the normalization technique the load and the plastic component of displacement are normalized. The normalized data is then fit with a normalization function that approximates a power law for small displacements that are dominated by blunting and smoothly transitions to a linear relationship for large displacements that are dominated by stable crack extension. Particularly for very ductile polymers the compliance term used to determine the plastic displacement can dominate the solution and small errors in determining the elastic modulus can lead to large errors in the normalization or even make it ill-posed. This can be further complicated for polymers where the elastic modulus is strong strain rate dependent and simply using a 'quasistatic' modulus from a dogbone measurement may not equate to the dominant strain rate in the compact tension specimen. The current work proposes directly measuring the compliance of the compact tension specimen in the solution of J-integral fracture toughness and then solving for the elastic modulus. By comparison with a range of strain rate data the dominant strain rate can then be determined.

  9. Relation of Tricuspid Regurgitation to Liver Stiffness Measured by Transient Elastography in Patients With Left-Sided Cardiac Valve Disease.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yan; Seto, Wai-Kay; Ho, Lai-Ming; Fung, James; Jim, Man-Hong; Yip, Gabriel; Fan, Katherine; Zhen, Zhe; Liu, Ju-Hua; Yuen, Man-Fung; Lau, Chu-Pak; Tse, Hung-Fat; Yiu, Kai-Hang

    2016-02-15

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the relation between tricuspid regurgitation (TR) severity and liver stiffness (LS) in patients with TR. A total of 131 patients with various degrees of TR secondary to left-sided heart valve disease were enrolled. Severity of TR was quantitatively assessed by proximal isovelocity surface area-derived effective regurgitant orifice (ERO). Patients were divided into 2 groups: 48 with mild-moderate TR (ERO <0.4cm(2)) and 83 with severe TR (ERO ?0.4cm(2)). Transient elastography was used to measure the level of LS, an established marker of liver fibrosis, with the threshold of significant LS set at ?12.5kPa. Patients with severe TR had a higher LS and prevalence of significant LS than those with mild-moderate TR. Furthermore, LS and significant LS independently correlated with TR-ERO, right atrial pressure and inferior vena cava (IVC) diameter. The presence of a large TR-ERO (?0.4cm(2)) and IVC diameter (>2.15cm(2)) provided a high specificity of 78% for significant LS. In conclusion, the present study demonstrates that TR-ERO, right atrial pressure, and IVC diameter are important parameters associated with LS in patients with TR. PMID:26718231

  10. Diagnosis of GLDAS LSM based aridity index and dryland identification.

    PubMed

    Ghazanfari, Sadegh; Pande, Saket; Hashemy, Mehdy; Sonneveld, Ben

    2013-04-15

    The identification of dryland areas is crucial for guiding policy aimed at intervening in water-stressed areas and addressing the perennial livelihood or food insecurity of these areas. However, the prevailing aridity indices (such as UNEP aridity index) have methodological limitations that restrict their use in delineating drylands and may be insufficient for decision-making frameworks. In this study, we propose a new aridity index based on based on 3 decades of soil moisture time series by accounting for site-specific soil and vegetation that partitions precipitation into the competing demands of evaporation and runoff. Our proposed aridity index is the frequency at which the dominant soil moisture value at a location is not exceeded by the dominant soil moisture values in all of the other locations. To represent the dominant spatial template of the soil moisture conditions, we extract the first eigenfunction from the empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis from 3 GLDAS land surface models (LSMs): VIC, MOSAIC and NOAH at 1 × 1 degree spatial resolution. The EOF analysis reveals that the first eigenfunction explains 33%, 43% and 47% of the VIC, NOAH and MOSAIC models, respectively. We compare each LSM aridity indices with the UNEP aridity index, which is created based on LSM data forcings. The VIC aridity index displays a pattern most closely resembling that of UNEP, although all of the LSM-based indices accurately isolate the dominant dryland areas. The UNEP classification identifies portions of south-central Africa, southeastern United States and eastern India as drier than predicted by all of the LSMs. The NOAH and MOSAIC LSMs categorize portions of southwestern Africa as drier than the other two classifications, while all of the LSMs classify portions of central India as wetter than the UNEP classification. We compare all aridity maps with the long-term average NDVI values. Results show that vegetation cover in areas that the UNEP index classifies as drier than the other three LSMs (NDVI values are mostly greater than 0). Finally, the unsupervised clustering of global land surface based on long-term mean temperature and precipitation, soil texture and land slope reveals that areas classified as dry by the UNEP index but not by the LSMs do not have dry region characteristics. The dominant cluster for these areas has high water holding capacity. We conclude that the LSM-based aridity index may identify dryland areas more effectively than the UNEP aridity index because the former incorporates the role of vegetation and soil in the partitioning of precipitation into evaporation, runoff and infiltration. PMID:23500019

  11. The Relationships Between the Arterial Stiffness Index Measured at the Radial Artery and Left Ventricular Diastolic Dysfunction in Asymptomatic High Risk Patients Without Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Disease.

    PubMed

    Kim, GeeHee; Kim, Ji-Hoon; Moon, Keon-Woong; Yoo, Ki-Dong; Kim, Chul-Min; Moon, Donggyu; Lee, Su-Nam

    2016-01-19

    Arterial stiffness is associated with atherosclerosis and left ventricular (LV) diastolic function in general or hypertensive patients. However, the relationships between the arterial stiffness index measured at the radial artery and LV diastolic dysfunction in asymptomatic high-risk patients without atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) have not been fully established.A total 532 statin-nave patients (male:female ratio, 230:302, mean age, 56.0 9.2 years) without ASCVD were enrolled from among subjects who simultaneously underwent transthoracic echocardiography and noninvasive semiautomated radial artery applanation tonometry from July 2011 to May 2014. Of these patients, 213 were categorized as the statin benefit group (Benefit) according to guidelines for blood cholesterol treatment, and the rest were placed in the nonbenefit control group (NoBenefit). Each group was subdivided into two groups (Y or N) according to antihypertensive medication administration. Thus, there were 4 groups: BenefitN (n = 80), BenefitY (n = 133), NoBenefitN (n = 251), and NoBenefitY (n = 68). There were significant differences in echocardiographic parameters of LV function and indices of arterial stiffness between the Benefit and NoBenefit groups. After adjusting for several risk factors, independent significant associations between echocardiographic parameters of LV diastolic function and arterial indices were identified with multivariate linear regression analysis in the Benefit patients.Parameters of arterial stiffness measured at the radial artery are associated with echocardiographic indices of LV diastolic function in asymptomatic high-risk patients without ASCVD. Therapies that prevent progression of arterial stiffness and reduce late-systolic pressure overload may help to reduce the prevalence of LV diastolic dysfunction in this population. PMID:26742882

  12. Impact of liver steatosis on the correlation between liver stiffness and fibrosis measured by transient elastography in patients coinfected with human immunodeficiency virus and hepatitis C virus.

    PubMed

    Snchez-Conde, M; Montes Ramrez, M L; Belln Cano, J M; Caminoa, A; Alvarez Rodrguez, F; Gonzlez Garcia, J; Miralles Martn, P; Bernardino de la Serna, I; Bernardo de Quirs, J C Lpez; Arribas Lpez, J R; Cosn Ochata, J; Pascual Pareja, J F; Alvarez, E; Berenguer, J B

    2011-07-01

    We assessed the effect of different hepatic conditions such as fibrosis, steatosis and necroinflammatory activity on liver stiffness as measured by transient elastography in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients. We studied all consecutive HIV/HCV-coinfected patients who underwent liver biopsy and elastography between January 2007 and December 2008. Liver fibrosis was staged following METAVIR Cooperative Study Group criteria. Steatosis was categorized according to the percentage of affected hepatocytes as low (?10%), moderate (<25%) and severe (?25%). A total of 110 patients were included. Fibrosis was distributed by stage as follows: F0, n?=?13; F1, n?=?47; F2, n?=?29; F3, n?=?18; and F4, n?=?3. Liver biopsy revealed the presence of hepatic steatosis in 68 patients (low to moderate, n?=?53; and severe n?=?15). By univariate regression analysis, fibrosis, necroinflammatory activity, and the degree of steatosis were correlated with liver stiffness. However, in a multiple regression analysis, steatosis and fibrosis were the only independent variables significantly associated with liver stiffness. With a cut-off of 9.5?kPa to distinguish patients with F???2 from F???3, elastography led to a significantly higher number of misclassification errors (25%vs 5%; P?=?0.014), most of which were false positives for F???3. Our study suggests that the correlation between liver stiffness and fibrosis as estimated by transient elastography may be affected by the presence of hepatic steatosis in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients. PMID:21129129

  13. A novel method of measuring leaf epidermis and mesophyll stiffness shows the ubiquitous nature of the sandwich structure of leaf laminas in broad-leaved angiosperm species.

    PubMed

    Onoda, Yusuke; Schieving, Feike; Anten, Niels P R

    2015-05-01

    Plant leaves commonly exhibit a thin, flat structure that facilitates a high light interception per unit mass, but may increase risks of mechanical failure when subjected to gravity, wind and herbivory as well as other stresses. Leaf laminas are composed of thin epidermis layers and thicker intervening mesophyll layers, which resemble a composite material, i.e. sandwich structure, used in engineering constructions (e.g. airplane wings) where high bending stiffness with minimum weight is important. Yet, to what extent leaf laminas are mechanically designed and behave as a sandwich structure remains unclear. To resolve this issue, we developed and applied a novel method to estimate stiffness of epidermis- and mesophyll layers without separating the layers. Across a phylogenetically diverse range of 36 angiosperm species, the estimated Young's moduli (a measure of stiffness) of mesophyll layers were much lower than those of the epidermis layers, indicating that leaf laminas behaved similarly to efficient sandwich structures. The stiffness of epidermis layers was higher in evergreen species than in deciduous species, and strongly associated with cuticle thickness. The ubiquitous nature of sandwich structures in leaves across studied species suggests that the sandwich structure has evolutionary advantages as it enables leaves to be simultaneously thin and flat, efficiently capturing light and maintaining mechanical stability under various stresses. PMID:25675956

  14. Static determination of exchange stiffness by quantitative domain wall and anisotropy measurements in La_0.7Ca_0.3MnO_3

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mathur, Neil; Lloyd, Stephen; Loudon, James; Midgley, Paul; Jo, Moon-Ho; Evetts, Jan; Blamire, Mark

    2001-03-01

    Two parallel studies of the low temperature ferromagnetic phase of the manganite La_0.7Ca_0.3MnO3 were conducted using epitaxial films grown by pulsed laser deposition on NdGaO3 (001). In the first study, the width of a magnetic domain wall was measured using a recently developed Lorentz TEM technique to be 38 nm (linearly extrapolating the angular dependence of moment on position from the wall centre to 90^circ). In the second study, uniaxial magnetocrystalline anisotropy (3.610^4 J m-3) was found along the orthorhombic [100] direction using a vibrating sample magnetometer (an unconventional method was required because the slightly anisotropic substrate is strongly paramagnetic). Combining the two studies suggests that the quantum mechanical exchange stiffness J is 8.910-22 Joules. Our static method gives a similar value to the dynamic value deduced from neutron spin wave stiffness measurements in the long wavelength limit.

  15. High temperature oxidation behavior of interconnect coated with LSCF and LSM for solid oxide fuel cell by screen printing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Shyong; Chu, Chun-Lin; Tsai, Ming-Jui; Lee, Jye

    2010-01-01

    The current study examined the effect of La 0.6Sr 0.4Co 0.2Fe 0.8O 3 (LSCF) and La 0.7Sr 0.3MnO 3 (LSM) coatings on the electrical properties and oxidation resistance of Crofer22 APU at 800 °C hot air. LSCF and LSM were coated on Crofer22 APU by screen printing and sintered over temperatures ranging from 1000 to 1100 °C in N 2. The coated alloy was first checked for compositions, morphology and interface conditions and then treated in a simulated oxidizing environment at 800 °C for 200 h. After measuring the long-term electrical resistance, the area specific resistance (ASR) at 800 °C for the alloy coated with LSCF was less than its counterpart coated with LSM. This work used LSCF coating as a metallic interconnect to reduce working temperature for the solid oxide fuel cell.

  16. MR Elastography for the Assessment of Hepatic Fibrosis in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis B Infection: Does Histologic Necroinflammation Influence the Measurement of Hepatic Stiffness?

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Yu; Xia, Fei; Dzyubak, Bogdan; Glaser, Kevin J.; Li, Qiuju; Li, Jiahui; Ehman, Richard L.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose To determine the diagnostic performance of magnetic resonance (MR) elastography for the staging of hepatic fibrosis and to evaluate the influence of necroinflammation on hepatic stiffness in patients with chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection by using histopathologic findings as the reference standard. Materials and Methods One hundred thirteen consecutive patients with chronic HBV infection were recruited prospectively in this institutional review boardapproved study after providing written informed consent between March 2012 and October 2013. The stiffness measurements were obtained by using two-dimensional gradient-echo MR elastography with a 3.0-T MR system. The METAVIR scoring system was used for the assessment of fibrosis (F stage) and necroinflammation (A grade). The predictive ability of MR elastography was evaluated by using the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve and the area under the ROC curve (AUC). Multiple linear regression analyses were conducted to determine the relationship between hepatic stiffness and the variables that showed a significant association in the univariate analysis or those that were of interest for comparison with earlier work (histologic scores, sex, age, aspartate aminotransferase level, and aspartate aminotransferase/alanine aminotransferase ratio). Results MR elastography showed excellent performance for characterization of ?F1, ?F2, ?F3, and F4 findings, with AUC values of 0.961, 0.986, 1.000, and 0.998, respectively. It showed a moderate capability for evaluation of necroinflammatory activity of ?A1, ?A2, and A3 (AUC = 0.806, 0.834, and 0.906, respectively). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that fibrosis, necroinflammation, and sex were independently associated with hepatic stiffness (? = 0.799, 0.277, and 0.070, respectively; P < .05). For pairwise comparisons, log-transformed hepatic stiffness showed no difference between (a) groups F0/A23 and F1/A01 and (b) groups F1/A23 and F2/A01 (P > .99 and P = .486, respectively). Conclusion MR elastography demonstrated excellent performance for distinguishing the stages of hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic HBV infection. For hepatic tissue with ?F2 fibrosis, necroinflammation can account for a substantial fraction of the increase in hepatic stiffness. RSNA, 2014 PMID:24893048

  17. Lase Ultrasonic Web Stiffness tester

    SciTech Connect

    Tim Patterson, Ph.D., IPST at Ga Tech

    2009-01-12

    The objective is to provide a sensor that uses non-contact, laser ultrasonics to measure the stiffness of paper during the manufacturing process. This will allow the manufacturer to adjust the production process in real time, increase filler content, modify fiber refining and as result produce a quality product using less energy. The sensor operates by moving back and forth across the paper web, at pre-selected locations firing a laser at the sheet, measuring the out-of-plane velocity of the sheet then using that measurement to calculate sheet stiffness.

  18. Cytoplasmic LSM-1 protein regulates stress responses through the insulin/IGF-1 signaling pathway in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Cornes, Eric; Porta-De-La-Riva, Montserrat; Aristizbal-Corrales, David; Brokate-Llanos, Ana Mara; Garca-Rodrguez, Francisco Javier; Ertl, Iris; Daz, Mnica; Fontrodona, Laura; Reis, Kadri; Johnsen, Robert; Baillie, David; Muoz, Manuel J; Sarov, Mihail; Dupuy, Denis; Cern, Julin

    2015-09-01

    Genes coding for members of the Sm-like (LSm) protein family are conserved through evolution from prokaryotes to humans. These proteins have been described as forming homo- or heterocomplexes implicated in a broad range of RNA-related functions. To date, the nuclear LSm2-8 and the cytoplasmic LSm1-7 heteroheptamers are the best characterized complexes in eukaryotes. Through a comprehensive functional study of the LSm family members, we found that lsm-1 and lsm-3 are not essential for C. elegans viability, but their perturbation, by RNAi or mutations, produces defects in development, reproduction, and motility. We further investigated the function of lsm-1, which encodes the distinctive protein of the cytoplasmic complex. RNA-seq analysis of lsm-1 mutants suggests that they have impaired Insulin/IGF-1 signaling (IIS), which is conserved in metazoans and involved in the response to various types of stress through the action of the FOXO transcription factor DAF-16. Further analysis using a DAF-16::GFP reporter indicated that heat stress-induced translocation of DAF-16 to the nuclei is dependent on lsm-1. Consistent with this, we observed that lsm-1 mutants display heightened sensitivity to thermal stress and starvation, while overexpression of lsm-1 has the opposite effect. We also observed that under stress, cytoplasmic LSm proteins aggregate into granules in an LSM-1-dependent manner. Moreover, we found that lsm-1 and lsm-3 are required for other processes regulated by the IIS pathway, such as aging and pathogen resistance. PMID:26150554

  19. Mapping microscopic order in plant and mammalian cells and tissues: novel differential polarization attachment for new generation confocal microscopes (DP-LSM)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinbach, G.; Pawlak, K.; Pomozi, I.; Tóth, E. A.; Molnár, A.; Matkó, J.; Garab, G.

    2014-03-01

    Elucidation of the molecular architecture of complex, highly organized molecular macro-assemblies is an important, basic task for biology. Differential polarization (DP) measurements, such as linear (LD) and circular dichroism (CD) or the anisotropy of the fluorescence emission (r), which can be carried out in a dichrograph or spectrofluorimeter, respectively, carry unique, spatially averaged information about the molecular organization of the sample. For inhomogeneous samples—e.g. cells and tissues—measurements on macroscopic scale are not satisfactory, and in some cases not feasible, thus microscopic techniques must be applied. The microscopic DP-imaging technique, when based on confocal laser scanning microscope (LSM), allows the pixel by pixel mapping of anisotropy of a sample in 2D and 3D. The first DP-LSM configuration, which, in fluorescence mode, allowed confocal imaging of different DP quantities in real-time, without interfering with the ‘conventional’ imaging, was built on a Zeiss LSM410. It was demonstrated to be capable of determining non-confocally the linear birefringence (LB) or LD of a sample and, confocally, its FDLD (fluorescence detected LD), the degree of polarization (P) and the anisotropy of the fluorescence emission (r), following polarized and non-polarized excitation, respectively (Steinbach et al 2009 Acta Histochem.111 316-25). This DP-LSM configuration, however, cannot simply be adopted to new generation microscopes with considerably more compact structures. As shown here, for an Olympus FV500, we designed an easy-to-install DP attachment to determine LB, LD, FDLD and r, in new-generation confocal microscopes, which, in principle, can be complemented with a P-imaging unit, but specifically to the brand and type of LSM.

  20. Measurements of the Stiffness and Thickness of the Pavement Asphalt Layer Using the Enhanced Resonance Search Method

    PubMed Central

    Zakaria, Nur Mustakiza; Yusoff, Nur Izzi Md.; Hardwiyono, Sentot; Mohd Nayan, Khairul Anuar

    2014-01-01

    Enhanced resonance search (ERS) is a nondestructive testing method that has been created to evaluate the quality of a pavement by means of a special instrument called the pavement integrity scanner (PiScanner). This technique can be used to assess the thickness of the road pavement structure and the profile of shear wave velocity by using the principle of surface wave and body wave propagation. In this study, the ERS technique was used to determine the actual thickness of the asphaltic pavement surface layer, while the shear wave velocities obtained were used to determine its dynamic elastic modulus. A total of fifteen locations were identified and the results were then compared with the specifications of the Malaysian PWD, MDD UKM, and IKRAM. It was found that the value of the elastic modulus of materials is between 3929?MPa and 17726?MPa. A comparison of the average thickness of the samples with the design thickness of MDD UKM showed a difference of 20 to 60%. Thickness of the asphalt surface layer followed the specifications of Malaysian PWD and MDD UKM, while some of the values of stiffness obtained are higher than the standard. PMID:25276854

  1. Nonparticipatory Stiffness in the Male Perioral Complex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chu, Shin-Ying; Barlow, Steven M.; Lee, Jaehoon

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: The objective of this study was to extend previous published findings in the authors' laboratory using a new automated technology to quantitatively characterize nonparticipatory perioral stiffness in healthy male adults. Method: Quantitative measures of perioral stiffness were sampled during a nonparticipatory task using a

  2. Nonparticipatory Stiffness in the Male Perioral Complex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chu, Shin-Ying; Barlow, Steven M.; Lee, Jaehoon

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: The objective of this study was to extend previous published findings in the authors' laboratory using a new automated technology to quantitatively characterize nonparticipatory perioral stiffness in healthy male adults. Method: Quantitative measures of perioral stiffness were sampled during a nonparticipatory task using a…

  3. Spinal stiffness changes throughout the respiratory cycle.

    PubMed

    Shirley, D; Hodges, P W; Eriksson, A E M; Gandevia, S C

    2003-10-01

    Posteroanterior stiffness of the lumbar spine is influenced by factors, including trunk muscle activity and intra-abdominal pressure (IAP). Because these factors vary with breathing, this study investigated whether stiffness is modulated in a cyclical manner with respiration. A further aim was to investigate the relationship between stiffness and IAP or abdominal and paraspinal muscle activity. Stiffness was measured from force-displacement responses of a posteroanterior force applied over the spinous process of L2 and L4. Recordings were made of IAP and electromyographic activity from L4/L2 erector spinae, abdominal muscles, and chest wall. Stiffness was measured with the lung volume held at the extremes of tidal volume and at greater and lesser volumes. Stiffness at L4 and L2 increased above base-level values at functional residual capacity (L2 14.9 N/mm and L4 15.3 N/mm) with both inspiratory and expiratory efforts. The increase was related to the respiratory effort and was greatest during maximum expiration (L2 24.9 N/mm and L4 23.9 N/mm). The results indicate that changes in trunk muscle activity and IAP with respiratory efforts modulate spinal stiffness. In addition, the diaphragm may augment spinal stiffness via attachment of its crural fibers to the lumbar vertebrae. PMID:12970374

  4. LSm1-7 complexes bind to specific sites in viral RNA genomes and regulate their translation and replication.

    PubMed

    Galo, Rui Pedro; Chari, Ashwin; Alves-Rodrigues, Isabel; Lobo, Daniela; Mas, Antonio; Kambach, Christian; Fischer, Utz; Dez, Juana

    2010-04-01

    LSm1-7 complexes promote cellular mRNA degradation, in addition to translation and replication of positive-strand RNA viruses such as the Brome mosaic virus (BMV). Yet, how LSm1-7 complexes act on their targets remains elusive. Here, we report that reconstituted recombinant LSm1-7 complexes directly bind to two distinct RNA-target sequences in the BMV genome, a tRNA-like structure at the 3'-untranslated region and two internal A-rich single-stranded regions. Importantly, in vivo analysis shows that these sequences regulate the translation and replication of the BMV genome. Furthermore, both RNA-target sequences resemble those found for Hfq, the LSm counterpart in bacteria, suggesting conservation through evolution. Our results provide the first evidence that LSm1-7 complexes interact directly with viral RNA genomes and open new perspectives in the understanding of LSm1-7 functions. PMID:20181739

  5. Pat1 contributes to the RNA binding activity of the Lsm1-7Pat1 complex

    PubMed Central

    Chowdhury, Ashis; Kalurupalle, Swathi

    2014-01-01

    A major mRNA decay pathway in eukaryotes is initiated by deadenylation followed by decapping of the oligoadenylated mRNAs and subsequent 5?-to-3? exonucleolytic degradation of the capless mRNA. In this pathway, decapping is a rate-limiting step that requires the hetero-octameric Lsm1-7Pat1 complex to occur at normal rates in vivo. This complex is made up of the seven Sm-like proteins, Lsm1 through Lsm7, and the Pat1 protein. It binds RNA and has a unique binding preference for oligoadenylated RNAs over polyadenylated RNAs. Such binding ability is crucial for its mRNA decay function in vivo. In order to determine the contribution of Pat1 to the function of the Lsm1-7Pat1 complex, we compared the RNA binding properties of the Lsm1-7 complex purified from pat1? cells and purified Pat1 fragments with that of the wild-type Lsm1-7Pat1 complex. Our studies revealed that both the Lsm1-7 complex and purified Pat1 fragments have very low RNA binding activity and are impaired in the ability to recognize the oligo(A) tail on the RNA. However, reconstitution of the Lsm1-7Pat1 complex from these components restored these abilities. We also observed that Pat1 directly contacts RNA in the context of the Lsm1-7Pat1 complex. These studies suggest that the unique RNA binding properties and the mRNA decay function of the Lsm1-7Pat1 complex involve cooperation of residues from both Pat1 and the Lsm1-7 ring. Finally our studies also revealed that the middle domain of Pat1 is essential for the interaction of Pat1 with the Lsm1-7 complex in vivo. PMID:25035297

  6. Mutations in the Saccharomyces cerevisiae LSM1 Gene That Affect mRNA Decapping and 3? End Protection

    PubMed Central

    Tharun, Sundaresan; Muhlrad, Denise; Chowdhury, Ashis; Parker, Roy

    2005-01-01

    The decapping of eukaryotic mRNAs is a key step in their degradation. The heteroheptameric Lsm1p7p complex is a general activator of decapping and also functions in protecting the 3? ends of deadenylated mRNAs from a 3?-trimming reaction. Lsm1p is the unique member of the Lsm1p7p complex, distinguishing that complex from the functionally different Lsm2p8p complex. To understand the function of Lsm1p, we constructed a series of deletion and point mutations of the LSM1 gene and examined their effects on phenotype. These studies revealed the following: (i) Mutations affecting the predicted RNA-binding and inter-subunit interaction residues of Lsm1p led to impairment of mRNA decay, suggesting that the integrity of the Lsm1p7p complex and the ability of the Lsm1p7p complex to interact with mRNA are important for mRNA decay function; (ii) mutations affecting the predicted RNA contact residues did not affect the localization of the Lsm1p7p complex to the P-bodies; (iii) mRNA 3?-end protection could be indicative of the binding of the Lsm1p7p complex to the mRNA prior to activation of decapping, since all the mutants defective in mRNA 3? end protection were also blocked in mRNA decay; and (iv) in addition to the Sm domain, the C-terminal domain of Lsm1p is also important for mRNA decay function. PMID:15716506

  7. Arterial Stiffness and Cardiovascular Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Jani?, Miodrag; Lunder, Mojca; abovi?, Mio

    2014-01-01

    The world population is aging and the number of old people is continuously increasing. Arterial structure and function change with age, progressively leading to arterial stiffening. Arterial stiffness is best characterized by measurement of pulse wave velocity (PWV), which is its surrogate marker. It has been shown that PWV could improve cardiovascular event prediction in models that included standard risk factors. Consequently, it might therefore enable better identification of populations at high-risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. The present review is focused on a survey of different pharmacological therapeutic options for decreasing arterial stiffness. The influence of several groups of drugs is described: antihypertensive drugs (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, calcium channel blockers, beta-blockers, diuretics, and nitrates), statins, peroral antidiabetics, advanced glycation end-products (AGE) cross-link breakers, anti-inflammatory drugs, endothelin-A receptor antagonists, and vasopeptidase inhibitors. All of these have shown some effect in decreasing arterial stiffness. Nevertheless, further studies are needed which should address the influence of arterial stiffness diminishment on major adverse cardiovascular and cerebrovascular events (MACCE). PMID:25170513

  8. Stiffness has different meanings, I think, to everyone. Examining Stiffness from the Perspective of People Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Orbai, Ana-Maria; Smith, Katherine C.; Bartlett, Susan J.; De Leon, Elaine; Bingham, Clifton O.

    2014-01-01

    Objective Stiffness is a well-recognized symptom of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). It is frequently queried during clinic visits as an indicator of disease activity, and was included in the 1961 and 1987 RA classification criteria. Little is known about how people with RA experience stiffness and its impact on their lives. Methods We conducted 4 focus groups with 20 people with RA (4-6 participants per group), from one academic clinical practice and one private practice, to generate accounts of stiffness experiences. Qualitative inductive thematic data analysis was conducted. Results Five overarching themes were identified: 1. Relationship of stiffness with other symptoms; 2. Exacerbating or alleviating factors and self-management; 3. Stiffness timing and location; 4. Individual meanings of stiffness experiences; 5. Impact of stiffness on daily life. Conclusion Focus group discussions revealed individual stiffness experiences as diverse and complex. Several stiffness features were endorsed by a majority of participants, but few, if any, were universally experienced, thus the significance of stiffness as an expression of the disease varied widely. Discussions yielded descriptions of how individual limits imposed by RA in general and stiffness in particular, may change over time and were intertwined with adaptations to preserve participation in valued life activities. These results concerning the diversity of the stiffness experience, consequential adaptations, and its impact suggest a more individualized approach to stiffness measurement may be needed in order to improve stiffness assessments. PMID:24891304

  9. Theoretical analysis of segmented Wolter/LSM X-ray telescope systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shealy, D. L.; Chao, S. H.

    1986-01-01

    The Segmented Wolter I/LSM X-ray Telescope, which consists of a Wolter I Telescope with a tilted, off-axis convex spherical Layered Synthetic Microstructure (LSM) optics placed near the primary focus to accommodate multiple off-axis detectors, has been analyzed. The Skylab ATM Experiment S056 Wolter I telescope and the Stanford/MSFC nested Wolter-Schwarzschild x-ray telescope have been considered as the primary optics. A ray trace analysis has been performed to calculate the RMS blur circle radius, point spread function (PSF), the meridional and sagittal line functions (LST), and the full width half maximum (PWHM) of the PSF to study the spatial resolution of the system. The effects on resolution of defocussing the image plane, tilting and decentrating of the multilayer (LSM) optics have also been investigated to give the mounting and alignment tolerances of the LSM optic. Comparison has been made between the performance of the segmented Wolter/LSM optical system and that of the Spectral Slicing X-ray Telescope (SSXRT) systems.

  10. Magnetic negative stiffness dampers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Xiang; Zhu, Songye

    2015-07-01

    This communication presents the design principle and experimental validation of two novel configurations of magnetic negative stiffness dampers (MNSDs), both of which are composed of several permanent magnets arranged in a conductive pipe. The MNSD, as a passive device, efficiently integrates negative stiffness and eddy-current damping in a simple and compact design, in which the negative stiffness behavior depends on the different arrangements of the permanent magnets. When applied to structural vibration control, passive MNSD may achieve a performance comparable with semi-active or active control in some applications. Laboratory experiments of small-scale prototypes successfully verified the proposed MNSD design concept.

  11. Indirect measure of visceral adiposity ‘A Body Shape Index’ (ABSI) is associated with arterial stiffness in patients with type 2 diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Bouchi, Ryotaro; Asakawa, Masahiro; Ohara, Norihiko; Nakano, Yujiro; Takeuchi, Takato; Murakami, Masanori; Sasahara, Yuriko; Numasawa, Mitsuyuki; Minami, Isao; Izumiyama, Hajime; Hashimoto, Koshi; Yoshimoto, Takanobu; Ogawa, Yoshihiro

    2016-01-01

    Objective Among indirect measures of visceral adiposity, A Body Shape Index (ABSI), which is defined as waist circumference (WC)/(body mass index (BMI)2/3×height1/2), is unique in that ABSI is positively correlated with visceral adiposity and is supposed to be independent of BMI. ABSI has been also shown to be linearly and positively associated with visceral fat mass and all-cause and cardiovascular disease (CVD) in the general population. It is, however, uncertain whether ABSI could be associated with arterial stiffness in patients with diabetes. Methods This is a cross-sectional study of 607 patients with type 2 diabetes (mean age 64±12 years; 40.0% female). Visceral fat area (VFA, cm2) and subcutaneous fat area (SFA, cm2) were assessed with a dual-impedance analyzer. In order to estimate the risk for CVD, brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV, cm) was used for the assessment of arterial stiffness. Results ABSI was significantly and positively correlated with VFA (r=0.138, p=0.001) and negatively associated with BMI (r=−0.085, p=0.037). The correlation of z-score for ABSI with VFA remained significant (r=0.170, p<0.001) but not with BMI (r=0.009, p=0.820). ABSI (standardized β 0.095, p=0.043) but not WC (standardized β −0.060, p=0.200) was significantly and positively correlated with baPWV in the multivariate model including BMI as a covariate. Conclusions ABSI appears to reflect visceral adiposity independently of BMI and to be a substantial marker of arterial stiffening in patients with type 2 diabetes.

  12. Athletic Footwear, Leg Stiffness, and Running Kinematics

    PubMed Central

    Bishop, Mark; Fiolkowski, Paul; Conrad, Bryan; Brunt, Denis; Horodyski, MaryBeth

    2006-01-01

    Context: The leg acts as a linear spring during running and hopping and adapts to the stiffness of the surface, maintaining constant total stiffness of the leg-surface system. Introducing a substance (eg, footwear) may affect the stiffness of the leg in response to changes in surface stiffness. Objective: To determine if the type of athletic footwear affects the regulation of leg stiffness in dynamic activities. Design: Repeated-measures design. Setting: Motion analysis laboratory. Patients or Other Participants: Nine healthy adults (age = 28 6.8 years, mass = 71.6 12.9 kg) free from lower extremity injuries. Intervention(s): Subjects hopped at 2.2 Hz on a forceplate under 3 footwear conditions (barefoot, low-cost footwear, high-cost footwear). Subjects ran on a treadmill at 2 speeds (2.23 m/s, 3.58 m/s) under the same footwear conditions. Main Outcome Measure(s): Limb stiffness was calculated from forceplate data. Kinematic data (knee and ankle angles at initial contact and peak joint excursion after contact) were collected during running. We calculated 1-way repeated-measures (stiffness) and 2-way (speed by footwear) repeated-measures analyses of variance (running kinematics) to test the dependent variables. Results: A significant increase in leg stiffness from the barefoot to the cushioned shoe condition was noted during hopping. When running shod, runners landed in more dorsiflexion but had less ankle motion than when running barefoot. No differences were seen between the types of shoes. The primary kinematic difference was identified as running speed increased: runners landed in more knee flexion. At the ankle, barefoot runners increased ankle motion to a significantly greater extent than did shod runners as speed increased. Conclusions: Footwear influences the maintenance of stiffness in the lower extremity during hopping and joint excursion at the ankle in running. Differences in cushioning properties of the shoes tested did not appear to be significant. PMID:17273463

  13. The stiff elbow.

    PubMed

    Nandi, Sumon; Maschke, Steven; Evans, Peter J; Lawton, Jeffrey N

    2009-12-01

    Elbow motion is essential for upper extremity function to position the hand in space. Unfortunately, the elbow joint is prone to stiffness following a multitude of traumatic and atraumatic etiologies. Elbow stiffness can be diagnosed with a complete history and physical exam, supplemented with appropriate imaging studies. The stiff elbow is challenging to treat, and thus, its prevention is of paramount importance. When this approach fails, non-operative followed by operative treatment modalities should be pursued. Upon initial presentation in those who have minimal contractures of 6-month duration or less, static and dynamic splinting, serial casting, continuous passive motion, occupational/physical therapy, and manipulation are non-operative treatment modalities that may be attempted. A stiff elbow that is refractory to non-operative management can be treated surgically, either arthroscopically or open, to eliminate soft tissue or bony blocks to motion. In the future, efforts to prevent and treat elbow stiffness may target the basic science mechanisms involved. Our purpose was to review the etiologies, classification, evaluation, prevention, operative, and non-operative treatment of the stiff elbow. PMID:19350328

  14. Electrochemical Performance and Stability of the Cathode for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells IV. On the Ohmic loss in anode supported button cells with LSM or LSCF cathodes

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Zigui; Zhou, Xiao Dong; Templeton, Jared W.; Stevenson, Jeffry W.

    2010-05-08

    Anode-supported solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) with a variety of YSZ electrolyte thicknesses were fabricated by tape casting and lamination. The preparation of the YSZ electrolyte tapes with various thicknesses was accomplished by using doctor blades with different gaps between the precision machined, polished blade and the casting surface. The green tape was cut into discs, sintered at 1385C for 2 h, and subsequently creep-flattened at 1350C for 2 h. Either LSCF with an SDC interlayer or LSM+YSZ composite was used as the cathode material for the fuel cells. The ohmic resistances of these anode-supported fuel cells were characterized by electrochemical impedance spectroscopy at temperatures from 500C to 750C. A linear relationship was found between the ohmic resistance of the fuel cell and the YSZ electrolyte thickness at all the measuring temperatures for both LSCF and LSM+YSZ cathode fuel cells. The ionic conductivities of the YSZ electrolyte, derived for the fuel cells with LSM+YSZ or LSCF cathodes, were independent of the cathode material and cell configuration. The ionic conductivities of the YSZ electrolyte was slightly lower than that of the bulk material, possibly due to Ni-doping into the electrolyte. The fuel cell with a SDC interlayer and LSCF cathode showed larger intercept resistance than the fuel cell with LSM+YSZ cathode, which was possibly due to the imperfect contact between the SDC interlayer and the YSZ electrolyte and the migration of Zr into the SDC interlayer to form an insulating solid solution during cell fabrication. Calculations of the contribution of the YSZ electrolyte to the total ohmic resistance showed that YSZ was still a satisfactory electrolyte at temperatures above 650C. Explorations should be directed to reduce the intercept resistance to achieve significant improvement in cell performance.

  15. Aortic stiffness: pathophysiology, clinical implications, and approach to treatment

    PubMed Central

    Sethi, Salil; Rivera, Oscar; Oliveros, Rene; Chilton, Robert

    2014-01-01

    Aortic stiffness is a hallmark of aging, and classic cardiovascular risk factors play a role in accelerating this process. Current changes in medicine, which focus on preventive care, have led to a growing interest in noninvasive evaluation of aortic stiffness. Aortic stiffness has emerged as a good tool for further risk stratification because it has been linked to increased risk of atherosclerotic heart disease, myocardial infarction, heart failure, and stroke. This has led to the invention and validation of multiple methods to measure aortic stiffness. Pulse wave velocity is emerging as the gold standard for evaluation of aortic stiffness. This review focuses on the pathophysiology involved in aortic stiffness, methods available for evaluation of aortic stiffness, the importance of central pressure as a predictor of future cardiovascular events, and therapies that affect aortic stiffness. PMID:24910511

  16. Electrochemical Performance and Stability of the Cathode for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells: III. Role of volatile boron species on LSM/YSZ and LSCF

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Xiao Dong; Templeton, Jared W.; Zhu, Zihua; Chou, Y. S.; Maupin, Gary D.; Lu, Zigui; Brow, R. K.; Stevenson, Jeffry W.

    2010-09-02

    Boron oxide is a key component to tailor the softening temperature and viscosity of the sealing glass for solid oxide fuel cells. The primary concern regarding the use of boron containing sealing glasses is the volatility of boron species, which possibly results in cathode degradation. In this paper, we report the role of volatile boron species on the electrochemical performance of LSM/YSZ and LSCF cathodes at various SOFC operation temperatures. The transport rate of boron, ~ 3.2410-12 g/cm2sec was measured at 750C with air saturated with 2.8% moisture. A reduction in power density was observed in cells with LSM/YSZ cathodes after introduction of the boron source to the cathode air stream. Partial recovery of the power density was observed after the boron source was removed. Results from post-test secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) analysis the partial recovery in power density correlated with partil removal of the deposited boron by the clean air stream. The presence of boron was also observed in LSCF cathodes by SIMS analysis, however the effect of boron on the electrochemical performance of LSCF cathode was negligible. Coverage of triple phase boundaries in LSM/YSZ was postulated as the cause for the observed reduction in electrochemical performance.

  17. Electromechanical Dynamics Simulations of Superconducting LSM Rocket Launcher System in Attractive-Mode

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoshida, Kinjiro; Hayashi, Kengo; Takami, Hiroshi

    1996-01-01

    Further feasibility study on a superconducting linear synchronous motor (LSM) rocket launcher system is presented on the basis of dynamic simulations of electric power, efficiency and power factor as well as the ascending motions of the launcher and rocket. The advantages of attractive-mode operation are found from comparison with repulsive-mode operation. It is made clear that the LSM rocket launcher system, of which the long-stator is divided optimally into 60 sections according to launcher speeds, can obtain high efficiency and power factor.

  18. Harmonic Analysis of the Output Voltage of a Third-Harmonic-Injected Inverter for LSM Drives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shigeeda, Hidenori; Okui, Akinobu; Akagi, Hirofumi

    The superconducting magnetic levitation railway system (MAGLEV) under development in Japan uses a pulse-width-modulation (PWM) inverter for driving a linear synchronous motor (LSM). The inverter output voltage contains non-negligible harmonics which cause harmonic resonances in the LSM system, and therefore harmonics of the output voltage have been analyzed in order to control such harmonic resonances. This paper applies a third-harmonic injection method to the inverter for the purpose of enhancing the output voltage without changing the circuit configuration. It performs harmonic analysis of the output voltage of the inverter based on the third-harmonic injection. Validity of the harmonic analysis is verified by computer simulation.

  19. Arterial stiffness: a brief review

    PubMed Central

    Shirwany, Najeeb A; Zou, Ming-hui

    2010-01-01

    Physical stiffening of the large arteries is the central paradigm of vascular aging. Indeed, stiffening in the larger central arterial system, such as the aortic tree, significantly contributes to cardiovascular diseases in older individuals and is positively associated with systolic hypertension, coronary artery disease, stroke, heart failure and atrial fibrillation, which are the leading causes of mortality in the developed countries and also in the developing world as estimated in 2010 by World Health Organizations. Thus, better, less invasive and more accurate measures of arterial stiffness have been developed, which prove useful as diagnostic indices, pathophysiological markers and predictive indicators of disease. This article presents a review of the structural determinants of vascular stiffening, its pathophysiologic determinants and its implications for vascular research and medicine. A critical discussion of new techniques for assessing vascular stiffness is also presented. PMID:20802505

  20. Regional brain stiffness changes across the Alzheimer's disease spectrum☆

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Matthew C.; Jones, David T.; Jack, Clifford R.; Glaser, Kevin J.; Senjem, Matthew L.; Manduca, Armando; Felmlee, Joel P.; Carter, Rickey E.; Ehman, Richard L.; Huston, John

    2015-01-01

    Magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) is an MRI-based technique to noninvasively measure tissue stiffness. Currently well established for clinical use in the liver, MRE is increasingly being investigated to measure brain stiffness as a novel biomarker of a variety of neurological diseases. The purpose of this work was to apply a recently developed MRE pipeline to measure regional brain stiffness changes in human subjects across the Alzheimer's disease (AD) spectrum, and to gain insights into the biological processes underlying those stiffness changes by correlating stiffness with existing biomarkers of AD. The results indicate that stiffness changes occur mostly in the frontal, parietal and temporal lobes, in accordance with the known topography of AD pathology. Furthermore, stiffness in those areas correlates with existing imaging biomarkers of AD including hippocampal volumes and amyloid PET. Additional analysis revealed preliminary but significant evidence that the relationship between brain stiffness and AD severity is nonlinear and non-monotonic. Given that similar relationships have been observed in functional MRI experiments, we used task-free fMRI data to test the hypothesis that brain stiffness was sensitive to structural changes associated with altered functional connectivity. The analysis revealed that brain stiffness is significantly and positively correlated with default mode network connectivity. Therefore, brain stiffness as measured by MRE has potential to provide new and essential insights into the temporal dynamics of AD, as well as the relationship between functional and structural plasticity as it relates to AD pathophysiology. PMID:26900568

  1. Physical inactivity and arterial stiffness in COPD

    PubMed Central

    Sievi, Noriane A; Franzen, Daniel; Kohler, Malcolm; Clarenbach, Christian F

    2015-01-01

    Background Arterial stiffness is an important predictor of cardiovascular risk besides classic cardiovascular risk factors. Previous studies showed that arterial stiffness is increased in patients with COPD compared to healthy controls and exercise training may reduce arterial stiffness. Since physical inactivity is frequently observed in patients with COPD and exercise training may improve arterial stiffness, we hypothesized that low daily physical activity may be associated with increased arterial stiffness. Methods In 123 patients with COPD (72% men; mean [standard deviation] age: 62 [7.5] years; median [quartile] forced expiratory volume in 1 second 35 [27/65] %predicted), arterial stiffness was assessed by augmentation index (AI). Daily physical activity level (PAL) was measured by an activity monitor (SenseWear Pro) >1 week. The association between AI and PAL was investigated by univariate and multivariate regression analysis, taking into account disease-specific characteristics and comorbidities. Results Patients suffered from moderate (35%), severe (32%), and very severe (33%) COPD, and 22% were active smokers. Median (quartile) PAL was 1.4 (1.3/1.5) and mean (standard deviation) AI 26% (9.2%). PAL showed a negative association with AI (B=?9.32, P=0.017) independent of age, sex, blood pressure, and airflow limitation. Conclusion In COPD patients, a higher PAL seems to favorably influence arterial stiffness and therefore may reduce cardiovascular risk. Clinical Trial Registration http://www.ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01527773 PMID:26392763

  2. Electrochemical Performance and Stability of the Cathode for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells II. Role of Ni diffusion on LSM performance

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Xiao Dong; Simner, Steven P.; Templeton, Jared W.; Nie, Zimin; Stevenson, Jeffry W.; Gorman, B. P.

    2010-03-26

    The sintering of a standard (La0.8Sr0.2)0.98MnO3 (LSM-20) solid oxide fuel cell cathode composition (in the temperature range of 1050-1200C) on anode-supported cells utilizing a Ni-YSZ anode and thin YSZ electrolyte (<10 ?m thickness) has revealed the need for a protective ceria interlayer to prevent a detrimental interaction between the YSZ and the LSM. The interaction, however, is not the typically assumed formation of insulating La- and/or Sr-zirconate, but rather the result of Ni diffusion from the anode through the YSZ electrolyte and into the LSM resulting in coarsening and increased densification of the LSM microstructure. As an alternative to the use of a protective ceria interlayer, the presence of YSZ in the cathode material was able to suppress coarsening of LSM, thereby significantly improving the electrochemical performance.

  3. Reflectional transformation for structural stiffness

    SciTech Connect

    Vashi, K.M.

    1990-01-01

    This paper presents a structural reflection-related transformation for structural stiffness. The stiffness transformation addresses reflection of a structure about any of the three coordinate planes and renders the desired stiffness matrix using a stiffness matrix for the same structure before reflection. This transformation is elegant and simple, provides an efficient and technically rigorous approach to derive the required stiffness matrix without structural remodeling, and can be readily programmed to quickly perform the required matrix manipulations. 2 figs.

  4. Objectively measured physical activity and sedentary-time are associated with arterial stiffness in Brazilian young adults

    PubMed Central

    Horta, Bernardo Lessa; Schaan, Beatriz D.; Bielemann, Renata Moraes; Vianna, Carolina Ávila; Gigante, Denise Petrucci; Barros, Fernando C.; Ekelund, Ulf; Hallal, Pedro Curi

    2015-01-01

    Objective To examine the associations between objectively measured physical activity and sedentary time with pulse wave velocity (PWV) in Brazilian young adults. Methods Cross-sectional analysis with participants of the 1982 Pelotas (Brazil) Birth Cohort who were followed-up from birth to 30 years of age. Overall physical activity (PA) assessed as the average acceleration (mg), time spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA – min/day) and sedentary time (min/day) were calculated from acceleration data. Carotid-femoral PWV (m/s) was assessed using a portable ultrasound. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP/DBP), waist circumference (WC) and body mass index (BMI) were analyzed as possible mediators. Multiple linear regression and g-computation formula were used in the analyses. Results Complete data were available for 1241 individuals. PWV was significantly lower in the two highest quartiles of overall PA (0.26 m/s) compared with the lowest quartile. Participants in the highest quartile of sedentary time had 0.39 m/s higher PWV (95%CI: 0.20; 0.57) than those in the lowest quartile. Individuals achieving ≥30 min/day in MVPA had lower PWV (β = −0.35; 95%CI: −0.56; −0.14). Mutually adjusted analyses between MVPA and sedentary time and PWV changed the coefficients, although results from sedentary time remained more consistent. WC captured 44% of the association between MVPA and PWV. DBP explained 46% of the association between acceleration and PWV. Conclusions Physical activity was inversely related to PWV in young adults, whereas sedentary time was positively associated. Such associations were only partially mediated by WC and DBP. PMID:26386211

  5. UPDATES AND EVALUATION OF THE PX-LSM IN MM5

    EPA Science Inventory

    Starting with Version 3.4, there is a new land surface model known as the Pleim-Xiu LSM available in the MM5 system. Pleim and Xiu (1995) described the initial development and testing of this land surface and workshop proceedings provided a basic description of the model and s...

  6. Benchmarking LSM root-zone soil mositure predictions using satellite-based vegetation indices

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The application of modern land surface models (LSMs) to agricultural drought monitoring is based on the premise that anomalies in LSM root-zone soil moisture estimates can accurately anticipate the subsequent impact of drought on vegetation productivity and health. In addition, the water and energy ...

  7. Theoretical analysis of Wolter/LSM X-ray telescope systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shealy, D. L.; Chao, S.

    1985-01-01

    A ray tracing analysis has been performed for the spectral slicing zoom X-ray telescope for configurations in which a convex layered synthetic microstructure (LSM) optic is placed in front of the prime focus or a concave LSM optic is placed behind the prime focus. The analysis has considered the geometrical shape of the LSM optic to be either a hyperboloid, sphere, ellipsoid or constant optical path aspheric element for two configurations of the glancing incidence X-ray telescope: the ATM Experimental S-056 Wolter I system and the Stanford/MSFC Wolter-Schwarzchild nested system. For the different systems the RMS blur circle radii, the point spread function (PSF), the full width half maximum (FWHM) of the PSF have been evaluated as a function of field angle and magnification of the secondary to determine resolution of the system. The effects of decentration and tilt of the selected LSM element on the performance of the system have been studied to determine mounting and alignment tolerances.

  8. Regardless-of-Speed Superconducting LSM Controlled-Repulsive MAGLEV Vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Yoshida, Kinjiro; Egashira, Tatsuya; Hirai, Ryuichi

    1996-01-01

    This paper proposes a new repulsive Maglev vehicle which a superconducting linear synchronous motor (LSM) can levitate and propel simultaneously, independently of the vehicle speeds. The combined levitation and propulsion control is carried out by controlling mechanical-load angle and armature-current. Dynamic simulations show successful operations with good ride-quality by using a compact control method proposed here.

  9. Nanocharacterization of the negative stiffness of ferroelectric materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alipour Skandani, A.; Ctvrtlik, R.; Al-Haik, M.

    2014-08-01

    Phase changing materials such as ferroelectric materials could exhibit negative stiffness under certain thermomechanical environments. This negative stiffness is embodied by a deflection along the opposite direction of the applied load. So far negative stiffness materials were investigated with the specific morphology of embedded inclusions in stiff matrices then the resulting composite is studied to measure the behavior of each constituent indirectly. In this study, a modified nonisothermal nanoindentation method is developed to measure the negative stiffness of triglycine sulfate single crystal directly. This in-situ method is intended to first demonstrate the feasibility of detecting the negative stiffness via nanoindentation and nanocreep of a ferroelectric material at its Curie point and then to quantify the negative stiffness without the need for embedding the crystal within a stiffer matrix.

  10. Evaluation of Histological and non-Invasive Methods for the Detection of Liver Fibrosis: The Values of Histological and Digital Morphometric Analysis, Liver Stiffness Measurement and APRI Score.

    PubMed

    Halsz, Tnde; Horvth, Gbor; Kiss, Andrs; Pr, Gabriella; Szombati, Andrea; Gelley, Fanni; Nemes, Balzs; Kenessey, Istvn; Piurk, Violetta; Schaff, Zsuzsa

    2016-01-01

    Prognosis and treatment of liver diseases mainly depend on the precise evaluation of the fibrosis. Comparisons were made between the results of Metavir fibrosis scores and digital morphometric analyses (DMA), liver stiffness (LS) values and aminotransferase-platelet ratio (APRI) scores, respectively. Liver biopsy specimens stained with Sirius red and analysed by morphometry, LS and APRI measurements were taken from 96 patients with chronic liver diseases (56 cases of viral hepatitis, 22 cases of autoimmune- and 18 of mixed origin). The strongest correlation was observed between Metavir score and DMA (r?=?0.75 p?

  11. Fabrication of gradient porous LSM cathode by optimizing deposition parameters in ultrasonic spray pyrolysis

    SciTech Connect

    Hamedani, Hoda A.; Dahmen, Klaus-Hermann; Li, Dongsheng; Peydaye-Saheli, Houman; Garmestani, Hamid; Khaleel, Mohammad A.

    2008-10-07

    Multiple-step ultrasonic spray pyrolysis was developed to produce a gradient porous lanthanum strontium manganite (LSM) cathode on yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) electrolyte for use in intermediate temperature solid oxide fuel cells (IT-SOFCs). The effect of solvent and precursor type on the morphology and compositional homogeneity of the LSM film was first identified. The LSM film prepared from organo-metallic precursor and organic solvent showed a homogeneous crack-free microstructure before and after heat treatment as opposed to aqueous solution. With respect to the effect of processing parameters, increasing the temperature and solution flow rate in the specific range of 520580 C leads to change the microstructure from a dense to a highly porous structure. Using a dilute organic solution a nanocrystalline thin layer was first deposited at 520 C and solution flow rate of 0.73 ml/min on YSZ surface; then, three gradient porous layers were sprayed from concentrated solution at higher temperatures (540580 C) and solution flow rates (1.131.58 ml/min) to form a gradient porous LSM cathode film with 30 ?m thickness. The microstructure, phase crystallinity and compositional homogeneity of the fabricated films were examined by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and energy dispersive analysis of X-ray (EDX). Results showed that the spray pyrolized gradient film fabricated in the temperature range of 520580 C is composed of highly crystalline LSM phase which can remove the need for subsequent heat treatment.

  12. Macroscopic stiffness of breast tumors predicts metastasis.

    PubMed

    Fenner, Joseph; Stacer, Amanda C; Winterroth, Frank; Johnson, Timothy D; Luker, Kathryn E; Luker, Gary D

    2014-01-01

    Mechanical properties of tumors differ substantially from normal cells and tissues. Changes in stiffness or elasticity regulate pro-metastatic behaviors of cancer cells, but effects have been documented predominantly in isolated cells or in vitro cell culture systems. To directly link relative stiffness of tumors to cancer progression, we combined a mouse model of metastatic breast cancer with ex vivo measurements of bulk moduli of freshly excised, intact tumors. We found a high, inverse correlation between bulk modulus of resected tumors and subsequent local recurrence and metastasis. More compliant tumors were associated with more frequent, larger local recurrences and more extensive metastases than mice with relatively stiff tumors. We found that collagen content of resected tumors correlated with bulk modulus values. These data establish that relative differences in tumor stiffness correspond with tumor progression and metastasis, supporting further testing and development of tumor compliance as a prognostic biomarker in breast cancer. PMID:24981707

  13. Macroscopic Stiffness of Breast Tumors Predicts Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Fenner, Joseph; Stacer, Amanda C.; Winterroth, Frank; Johnson, Timothy D.; Luker, Kathryn E.; Luker, Gary D.

    2014-01-01

    Mechanical properties of tumors differ substantially from normal cells and tissues. Changes in stiffness or elasticity regulate pro-metastatic behaviors of cancer cells, but effects have been documented predominantly in isolated cells or in vitro cell culture systems. To directly link relative stiffness of tumors to cancer progression, we combined a mouse model of metastatic breast cancer with ex vivo measurements of bulk moduli of freshly excised, intact tumors. We found a high, inverse correlation between bulk modulus of resected tumors and subsequent local recurrence and metastasis. More compliant tumors were associated with more frequent, larger local recurrences and more extensive metastases than mice with relatively stiff tumors. We found that collagen content of resected tumors correlated with bulk modulus values. These data establish that relative differences in tumor stiffness correspond with tumor progression and metastasis, supporting further testing and development of tumor compliance as a prognostic biomarker in breast cancer. PMID:24981707

  14. Exercise, Vascular Stiffness, and Tissue Transglutaminase

    PubMed Central

    Steppan, Jochen; Sikka, Gautam; Jandu, Simran; Barodka, Viachaslau; Halushka, Marc K.; Flavahan, Nicholas A.; Belkin, Alexey M.; Nyhan, Daniel; Butlin, Mark; Avolio, Alberto; Berkowitz, Dan E.; Santhanam, Lakshmi

    2014-01-01

    Background Vascular aging is closely associated with increased vascular stiffness. It has recently been demonstrated that decreased nitric oxide (NO)?induced S?nitrosylation of tissue transglutaminase (TG2) contributes to age?related vascular stiffness. In the current study, we tested the hypothesis that exercise restores NO signaling and attenuates vascular stiffness by decreasing TG2 activity and cross?linking in an aging rat model. Methods and Results Rats were subjected to 12 weeks of moderate aerobic exercise. Aging was associated with diminished phosphorylated endothelial nitric oxide synthase and phosphorylated vasodilator?stimulated phosphoprotein abundance, suggesting reduced NO signaling. TG2 cross?linking activity was significantly increased in old animals, whereas TG2 abundance remained unchanged. These alterations were attenuated in the exercise cohort. Simultaneous measurement of blood pressure and pulse wave velocity (PWV) demonstrated increased aortic stiffness in old rats, compared to young, at all values of mean arterial pressure (MAP). The PWV?MAP correlation in the old sedentary and old exercise cohorts was similar. Tensile testing of the vessels showed increased stiffness of the aorta in the old phenotype with a modest restoration of mechanical properties toward the young phenotype with exercise. Conclusions Increased vascular stiffness during aging is associated with decreased TG2 S?nitrosylation, increased TG2 cross?linking activity, and increased vascular stiffness likely the result of decreased NO bioavailability. In this study, a brief period of moderate aerobic exercise enhanced NO signaling, attenuated TG cross?linking activity, and reduced ex vivo tensile properties, but failed to reverse functional vascular stiffness in vivo, as measured by PWV. PMID:24721796

  15. LSM14A inhibits porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) replication by activating IFN-? signaling pathway in Marc-145.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhenhong; Chen, Rui; Zhao, Jinhua; Qi, Ziyu; Ji, Likai; Zhen, Yueran; Liu, Bang

    2015-01-01

    Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is considered as a significant contributor to porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome, one of the most economically important diseases for the pig industry worldwide. Emerging evidence indicates that pattern recognition receptors play key roles in recognizing pathogen-associated molecular patterns. In the present study, we investigated the effects of a novel pattern recognition receptor LSM14A in regulating PRRSV replication. Results in Marc-145 cells and porcine alveolar macrophages (PAMs) indicated that overexpression of porcine LSM14A effectively inhibited the replication of PRRSV, and knockdown of LSM14A by siRNA enhanced the replication of PRRSV. Mechanistically, LSM14A up-regulated the activities of IFN-? and ISRE promoters, enhanced the production of IFN-?, RIG-I, and ISGs, and inhibited the production of the inflammatory cytokines of TNF-? and IL-6 mRNA. Additionally, the expression pattern of LSM14A during the infection of PRRSV in Tongcheng and Large White pigs was suppressed by the PRRSV challenge. Taken together, our results suggest that LSM14A is an important PRR that inhibits PPRSV replication by inducing IFN-? signaling and restraining inflammatory responses. Furthermore, the down-regulation of LSM14A by PRRSV might represent an important mechanism by which PRRSV invades the host. Our study sheds light on the possibility of developing a new strategy to control this disease. PMID:25408553

  16. The Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex promotes viral RNA translation and replication by differential mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Jungfleisch, Jennifer; Chowdhury, Ashis; Alves-Rodrigues, Isabel; Tharun, Sundaresan; Dez, Juana

    2015-08-01

    The Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex binds to the 3' end of cellular mRNAs and promotes 3' end protection and 5'-3' decay. Interestingly, this complex also specifically binds to cis-acting regulatory sequences of viral positive-strand RNA genomes promoting their translation and subsequent recruitment from translation to replication. Yet, how the Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex regulates these two processes remains elusive. Here, we show that Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex acts differentially in these processes. By using a collection of well-characterized lsm1 mutant alleles and a system that allows the replication of Brome mosaic virus (BMV) in yeast we show that the Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex integrity is essential for both, translation and recruitment. However, the intrinsic RNA-binding ability of the complex is only required for translation. Consistent with an RNA-binding-independent function of the Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex on BMV RNA recruitment, we show that the BMV 1a protein, the sole viral protein required for recruitment, interacts with this complex in an RNA-independent manner. Together, these results support a model wherein Lsm1-7-Pat1 complex binds consecutively to BMV RNA regulatory sequences and the 1a protein to promote viral RNA translation and later recruitment out of the host translation machinery to the viral replication complexes. PMID:26092942

  17. Stiffness of Railway Soil-Steel Structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machelski, Czesław

    2015-12-01

    The considerable influence of the soil backfill properties and that of the method of compacting it on the stiffness of soil-steel structures is characteristic of the latter. The above factors (exhibiting randomness) become apparent in shell deformation measurements conducted during construction and proof test loading. A definition of soil-shell structure stiffness, calculated on the basis of shell deflection under the service load, is proposed in the paper. It is demonstrated that the stiffness is the inverse of the deflection influence function used in structural mechanics. The moving load methodology is shown to be useful for testing, since it makes it possible to map the shell deflection influence line also in the case of group loads (concentrated forces), as in bridges. The analyzed cases show that the shell's span, geometry (static scheme) and the height of earth fill influence the stiffness of the structure. The soil-steel structure's characteristic parameter in the form of stiffness k is more suitable for assessing the quality of construction works than the proposed in code geometric index ω applied to beam structures. As shown in the given examples, parameter k is more effective than stiffness parameter λ used to estimate the deformation of soil-steel structures under construction. Although the examples concern railway structures, the methodology proposed in the paper is suitable also for road bridges.

  18. Variable stiffness torsion springs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alhorn, Dean C. (inventor); Polites, Michael E. (inventor)

    1994-01-01

    In a torsion spring the spring action is a result of the relationships between the torque applied in twisting the spring, the angle through which the torsion spring twists, and the modulus of elasticity of the spring material in shear. Torsion springs employed industrially have been strips, rods, or bars, generally termed shafts, capabable of being flexed by twisting their axes. They rely on the variations in shearing forces to furnish an internal restoring torque. In the torsion springs herein the restoring torque is external and therefore independent of the shearing modulus of elasticity of the torsion spring shaft. Also provided herein is a variable stiffness torsion spring. This torsion spring can be so adjusted as to have a given spring constant. Such variable stiffness torsion springs are extremely useful in gimballed payloads such as sensors, telescopes, and electronic devices on such platforms as a space shuttle or a space station.

  19. Variable stiffness torsion springs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Alhorn, Dean C. (inventor); Polites, Michael E. (inventor)

    1995-01-01

    In a torsion spring the spring action is a result of the relationships between the torque applied in twisting the spring, the angle through which the torsion spring twists, and the modulus of elasticity of the spring material in shear. Torsion springs employed industrially have been strips, rods, or bars, generally termed shafts, capabable of being flexed by twisting their axes. They rely on the variations in shearing forces to furnish an internal restoring torque. In the torsion springs herein the restoring torque is external and therefore independent of the shearing modulus of elasticity of the torsion spring shaft. Also provided herein is a variable stiffness torsion spring. This torsion spring can be so adjusted as to have a given spring constant. Such variable stiffness torsion springs are extremely useful in gimballed payloads such as sensors, telescopes, and electronic devices on such platforms as a space shuttle or a space station.

  20. NEM1 acts as a suppressor of apoptotic phenotypes in LSM4 yeast mutants.

    PubMed

    Palermo, Vanessa; Stirpe, Mariarita; Torella, Mirko; Falcone, Claudio; Mazzoni, Cristina

    2015-11-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae mutants in the essential gene LSM4, involved in messenger RNA decapping, and expressing a truncated form of the LSM4 gene of the yeast Kluyveromyces lactis (Kllsm4Δ1), show premature aging accompanied by the presence of typical markers of apoptosis and high sensitivity to oxidative stressing agents. We isolated multicopy extragenic suppressors of these defects, transforming the Kllsm4Δ1 mutant with a yeast DNA library and selecting clones showing resistance to acetic acid. Here we present one of these clones, carrying a DNA fragment containing the NEM1 gene (Nuclear Envelope Morphology protein 1), which encodes the catalytic subunit of the Nem1p-Spo7p phosphatase holoenzyme. Nem1p regulates nuclear growth by controlling phospholipid biosynthesis and it is required for normal nuclear envelope morphology and sporulation. The data presented here correlate the mRNA metabolism with the biosynthesis of phospholipids and with the functionality of the endoplasmic reticulum. PMID:26316593

  1. Contribution of cation-? interactions to the stability of Sm/LSm oligomeric assemblies.

    PubMed

    Muci?, Ivana D; Nikoli?, Milan R; Stojanovi?, Sr?an ?

    2015-07-01

    In this work, we have analyzed the influence of cation-? interactions to the stability of Sm/LSm assemblies and their environmental preferences. The number of interactions formed by arginine is higher than lysine in the cationic group, while histidine is comparatively higher than phenylalanine and tyrosine in the ? group. Arg-Tyr interactions are predominant among the various pairs analyzed. The furcation level of multiple cation-? interactions is much higher than that of single cation-? interactions in Sm/LSm interfaces. We have found hot spot residues forming cation-? interactions, and hot spot composition is similar for all aromatic residues. The Arg-Phe pair has the strongest interaction energy of -8.81kcalmol(-1) among all the possible pairs of amino acids. The extent of burial of the residue side-chain correlates with the ??G of binding for residues in the core and also for hot spot residues cation-? bonded across the interface. Secondary structure of the cation-? residues shows that Arg and Lys preferred to be in strand. Among the ? residues, His prefers to be in helix, Phe prefers to be in turn, and Tyr prefers to be in strand. Stabilization centers for these proteins showed that all the five residues found in cation-? interactions are important in locating one or more of such centers. More than 50% of the cation-? interacting residues are highly conserved. It is likely that the cation-? interactions contribute significantly to the overall stability of Sm/LSm proteins. PMID:25408427

  2. A Comparison of FIFE Observation with GEOS Assimilated Data Including a Heterogeneous LSM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bosilovich, M.; Houser, Paul; Molod, Andrea; Nebuda, Sharon

    1999-01-01

    Several recent studies have shown that much can be learned by comparing grid-point data from a data assimilation system with in-situ observations from field experiments. While the surface heterogeneity is acknowledged in these studies, they lack quantitative representations of the influence of heterogeneity on the near-surface meteorology and surface hydrologic and energy balance. Here, we use the Betts and Ball FIFE site-averaged data. Standard deviations of the site-average will provide an estimate of the FIFE site heterogeneity. Recently, the Mosaic Land-Surface Model (LSM) has been incorporated into the Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS) Data Assimilation System (DAS). The Mosaic LSM computes the surface energy and hydrologic balance for nine distinct surface types at each grid-point. Each surface type is proportionally weighted to determine the mean grid point properties. Hence, we can compare modeled and observed grid-point variability in addition to the mean properties. Also, assimilated data sets created with and without the LSM are compared. The results indicate the importance of including quantitative estimates of heterogeneity in the analysis of the land surface hydrology and energy balances in assimilation systems.

  3. Development of engineering prototype of Life Support Module (LSM)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    The development of an engineering prototype of a life support system is discussed. The module consists of an electrocardiogram, a defibrillator, a resuscitator, and an aspirator, as well as body temperature and blood pressure measuring instruments. A drug kit is included.

  4. Experiments on dynamic stiffness and damping of tapered bore seals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fleming, David P.

    1987-01-01

    Stiffness and damping were measured in tapered bore ring seals with air as the sealed fluid. Excitation was provided by a known unbalance in the shaft which rotated in the test seals. Results were obtained for various seal supply pressures, clearances, unbalance amounts, and shaft speeds. Stiffness and damping varied little with unbalance level, indicating linearity of the seal. Greater variation was observed with speed and particularly supply pressure. A one-dimensional analysis predicted stiffness fairly well, but considerably overestimated damping.

  5. Stiffness Dependent Separation of Cells in a Microfluidic Device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sulchek, Todd; Wang, Gonghao; Mao, Wenbin; Henegar, Caitlin; Alexeev, Alexander

    2012-02-01

    Abnormal cell mechanical stiffness can point to the development of various diseases including cancers and infections. We report a new high-throughput technique for continuous cell separation utilizing variation in cell stiffness. We use a microfluidic channel decorated by periodic diagonal ridges to separate K562 lymphoblastic cell line modified to different mechanical stiffness values. Diagonal ridges within the microfluidic flow channel compress and deform the cells in rapid succession to translate each cell perpendicular to the channel axis in proportion to its stiffness. Atomic force microscopy (AFM) was used to directly measure the Young's modulus of modified K562 cells to verify the stiffness variation. We demonstrate that soft cells can be separated from stiff cells at physiological concentrations with a fivefold enrichment of cell populations. This microfluidic device opens the way for conducting rapid and low-cost cell analysis and purification through physical markers.

  6. Dynamically variable negative stiffness structures.

    PubMed

    Churchill, Christopher B; Shahan, David W; Smith, Sloan P; Keefe, Andrew C; McKnight, Geoffrey P

    2016-02-01

    Variable stiffness structures that enable a wide range of efficient load-bearing and dexterous activity are ubiquitous in mammalian musculoskeletal systems but are rare in engineered systems because of their complexity, power, and cost. We present a new negative stiffness-based load-bearing structure with dynamically tunable stiffness. Negative stiffness, traditionally used to achieve novel response from passive structures, is a powerful tool to achieve dynamic stiffness changes when configured with an active component. Using relatively simple hardware and low-power, low-frequency actuation, we show an assembly capable of fast (<10 ms) and useful (>100×) dynamic stiffness control. This approach mitigates limitations of conventional tunable stiffness structures that exhibit either small (<30%) stiffness change, high friction, poor load/torque transmission at low stiffness, or high power active control at the frequencies of interest. We experimentally demonstrate actively tunable vibration isolation and stiffness tuning independent of supported loads, enhancing applications such as humanoid robotic limbs and lightweight adaptive vibration isolators. PMID:26989771

  7. Stiffnesses of laminated flat plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1994-04-01

    ESDU 94003 gives formulae for the in-plane and flexural stiffnesses of laminated flat plates built-up from thin orthotropic layers that may have different material properties, thicknesses, and orientations of their principal axes of orthotropy. The influence of the lay-up arrangement on the plate stiffnesses is explained. A complete list of possible forms of the stiffness matrices is provided with in each case examples of possible lay-up arrangements that will give them. Although it is normally convenient to use the central plane of the plate as the reference plane, subsequent calculations may be simplified by adopting another parallel reference plane; formulae are given for the values of the coupled in-plane and flexural stiffness matrix and the flexural stiffness matrix of the plate for such a shift of reference plane. The in-plane stiffness matrix is unaffected. A worked example illustrates the calculation of the stiffnesses. The relationship between the stiffnesses of a layer and the complete matrix of the elastic constants for an anisotropic solid is included. The relationship of the stiffnesses of both isotropic plates and sandwich panels with the laminated plate stiffnesses is also given. Equations are given relating the stress and strain in a layer in one axis system to those in another. The formulae apply to composite plates with systematic fibrous reinforcements in metallic or non-metallic matrices.

  8. Recent Advances in Hypertension: Arterial Stiffness and Hypertension

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Gary F.

    2014-01-01

    Over the past decade, increased aortic stiffness has emerged as an important risk factor for target organ damage and cardiovascular disease events. Aortic stiffness can be assessed as pulse wave velocity (PWV), which is a measure of aortic wall stiffness, and pulse pressure (PP), which is affected by wall stiffness and the interaction between flow and diameter. Because these stiffness measures have different sensitivities to geometry and other factors, they are only moderately correlated and play a complementary role in risk prediction. Arterial stiffness has long been viewed as a complication of hypertension that integrates long-term adverse effects of elevated blood pressure and other risk factors. However, PWV is only modestly correlated with risk factors other than age and blood pressure, which likely explains the ability of PWV to add to standard risk prediction models and reclassify risk in a clinically relevant manner. Recent studies have demonstrated that stiffness can antedate and contribute to the pathogenesis of hypertension, raising the possibility that early assessment of arterial stiffness may provide insight into complications including hypertension that develop years later. The role that stiffness plays in the pathogenesis of hypertension and cardiovascular disease has sparked considerable interest in defining basic mechanisms that stiffen the aortic wall, increase PP and contribute to target organ damage with a hope that elucidation of these mechanisms will allow for development of more effective treatments. PMID:24752432

  9. Dynamically variable negative stiffness structures

    PubMed Central

    Churchill, Christopher B.; Shahan, David W.; Smith, Sloan P.; Keefe, Andrew C.; McKnight, Geoffrey P.

    2016-01-01

    Variable stiffness structures that enable a wide range of efficient load-bearing and dexterous activity are ubiquitous in mammalian musculoskeletal systems but are rare in engineered systems because of their complexity, power, and cost. We present a new negative stiffness–based load-bearing structure with dynamically tunable stiffness. Negative stiffness, traditionally used to achieve novel response from passive structures, is a powerful tool to achieve dynamic stiffness changes when configured with an active component. Using relatively simple hardware and low-power, low-frequency actuation, we show an assembly capable of fast (<10 ms) and useful (>100×) dynamic stiffness control. This approach mitigates limitations of conventional tunable stiffness structures that exhibit either small (<30%) stiffness change, high friction, poor load/torque transmission at low stiffness, or high power active control at the frequencies of interest. We experimentally demonstrate actively tunable vibration isolation and stiffness tuning independent of supported loads, enhancing applications such as humanoid robotic limbs and lightweight adaptive vibration isolators. PMID:26989771

  10. Frequency-Dependent Fracture Specific Stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pyrak-Nolte, L. J.; Folz, M. A.; Acosta-Colon, A.

    2003-12-01

    Monitoring the hydraulic properties of fractures remotely through their seismic signatures is an important goal for field hydrology. Empirical studies have shown that the hydraulic properties of a fracture are implicitly related to the fracture specific stiffness through the amount and distribution of contact area and apertures that arise from two rough surfaces in contact. Complicating this simple picture are seismic measurements that indicate frequency-dependent stiffness, i.e., a scale-dependent fracture stiffness where the scale is set by the wavelength. Thus relating the hydraulic properties of fractures to seismic measurements becomes a scale dependent problem. We have performed laboratory experiments to examine the phenomenon of frequency dependent fracture specific stiffness to aid in the assessment of the hydraulic properties of a fracture using seismic techniques. To this end, we have developed a photolithographic technique with which we can construct synthetic fractures of known fracture geometry with feature sizes controlled over several orders of magnitude. The synthetic fracture (and the control non-fractured samples) are made from acrylic cylinders that measure 15.0 cm in diameter by 7.7 cm in height. The diameter of the samples enables us to sample the acoustic properties of the fracture using acoustic lens over regions that range in scale from 10 mm to 60 mm. A confinement cell controls the normal stress on the fracture. Seismic measurements were made with broadband compressional-mode piezoelectric transducers enabling one-order of magnitude in frequency. We found that when the wavelength is smaller than the asperity size, a linear dependence of fracture specific stiffness on frequency occurs. In this geometric ray regime the asymptotic value of the transmission function provides a direct measure of the contact area of the fracture. On the other hand, when the asperity spacing is less than an eighth of a wavelength, the fracture behaves as a displacement discontinuity and exhibits a frequency-independent fracture specific stiffness. For intermediate asperity spacings, mixed behavior (that may include resonant scattering) was observed. By understanding how to interpret fracture specific stiffness as a function of frequency, we seek to develop a better interpretation of the hydraulic properties of fractures based on seismic measurements. Acknowledgments: The Authors acknowledge support of this research by the Geosciences Research Program, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, US Department of Energy. LJPN wishes to acknowledge Purdue University Faculty Scholar

  11. Bone stiffness in children: part I. In vivo assessment of the stiffness of femur and tibia in children.

    PubMed

    Chotel, Franck; Braillon, Pierre; Sailhan, Frdric; Gadeyne, Sylvain; Panczer, Grard; Pedrini, Christian; Berard, Jrme

    2008-01-01

    Although there are many publications concerning the mechanical behavior of adult bone, there are few data about mechanical properties of children's bone. In vivo bone stiffness measurement with Orthometer device has been validated and extensively used in adults to assess bone healing after fracture or lengthening. We hypothesized that in vivo stiffness measurement with Orthometer was applicable in children and was correlated with age, height, body weight, and corpulence index. The purpose was to establish baseline stiffness values for femur and tibia in growing children.Sixteen bone measurements (7 femurs and 9 tibias) were obtained during application of an external fixator for leg lengthening in 11 children aged between 5.5 and 16.7 years. A 3-point bending test with an Orthometer was carried out on the intact bone (before osteotomy) under general anesthesia. The anteroposterior stiffness measurement was successful in all children of the series, aged from 5.5 to 16.7 years. A wide variation of femoral and tibial bone stiffness values were observed. The use of a unique value as in adults as the end point of bending stiffness during bone healing process is not possible for children. The anteroposterior bone stiffness was found to have linear correlation with children's height and body weight, but not with age and corpulence indexes. The original data obtained by this study will give a stiffness reference for height and weight and could be useful as reference values for monitoring of healing process after fracture or limb lengthening. PMID:18580368

  12. The compressive stiffness of human pediatric heads.

    PubMed

    Loyd, Andre Matthew; Nightingale, Roger W; Luck, Jason F; Song, Yin; Fronheiser, Lucy; Cutcliffe, Hattie; Myers, Barry S; Dale Bass, Cameron R

    2015-11-01

    Head injury is a persistent and costly problem for both children and adults. Globally, approximately 10 million people are hospitalized each year for head injuries. Knowing the structural properties of the head is important for modeling the response of the head in impact, and for providing insights into mechanisms of head injury. Hence, the goal of this study was to measure the sub-injurious structural stiffness of whole pediatric heads. 12 cadaveric pediatric (20-week-gestation to 16 years old) heads were tested in a battery of viscoelastic compression tests. The heads were compressed in both the lateral and anterior-posterior directions to 5% of gauge length at normalized deformation rates of 0.0005/s, 0.01/s, 0.1/s, and 0.3/s. Because of the non-linear nature of the response, linear regression models were used to calculate toe region (<2.5%) and elastic region (>2.5%) stiffness separately so that meaningful comparisons could be made across rate, age, and direction. The results showed that age was the dominant factor in predicting the structural stiffness of the human head. A large and statistically significant increase in the stiffness of both the toe region and the elastic region was observed with increasing age (p<0.0001), but no significant difference was seen across direction or normalized deformation rate. The stiffness of the elastic region increased from as low as 5N/mm in the neonate to >4500N/mm in the 16 year old. The changes in stiffness with age may be attributed to the disappearance of soft sutures and the thickening of skull bones with age. PMID:26476760

  13. A Micro-Scale Model for Oxygen Reduction on LSM-YSZ Cathode

    SciTech Connect

    Pakalapati, Suryanarayana Raju; Celik, Ismail; Finklea, Harry; Gong, Mingyang; Liu, Xingbo

    2011-05-01

    In this study, a micro-scale model is developed to simulate the oxygen reduction on LSM-YSZ composite cathode. The model incorporates the effects of cathode microstructural properties on the local transport phenomena and electrochemistry inside the cathode. A detailed reaction mechanism is used in the model which has two parallel routes for oxygen conversion into oxide ions, namely two-phase boundary and three-phase boundary pathways. The model predicts field distributions of local thermodynamic values, over-potential, Faradaic current and other parameters relevant to cathode performance. Electrochemical impedance simulations are performed using the current model to analyze the contribution of various processes to the overall impedance.

  14. Dynamic Changes in LSM Nanoparticles on YSZ: A Model System for Non-stationary SOFC Cathode Behavior

    SciTech Connect

    Woo, L Y; Glass, R S; Gorte, R J; Orme, C A; Nelson, A J

    2009-01-05

    The interaction between nanoparticles of strontium-doped lanthanum manganite (LSM) and single crystal yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) was investigated using atomic force microscopy (AFM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and scanning electron microscopy (SEM)/energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDX). Nanoparticles of LSM were deposited directly onto single crystal YSZ substrates (100) using an ultrasonic spray nozzle. As samples were annealed from 850 C to 1250 C, nanoparticles gradually decreased in height and eventually disappeared completely. Subsequent reduction in H{sub 2}/H{sub 2}O at 700 C resulted in the reappearance of nanoparticles. Studies were carried out on identical regions of the sample allowing the same nanoparticles to be characterized at different temperatures. Morphological changes indicate the formation of a thin layer of LSM, and XPS results support the observation by indicating an increase in signal from the La and Sr and a decrease in signal from the Y and Zr with increasing temperature. SEM/EDX was used to verify that the nanoparticles in the reduced sample contained La. The changes in the LSM/YSZ morphology may be important in explaining the non-stationary behavior observed in operating fuel cells. The thin layer of LSM initially results in poor cathode performance; reducing conditions then lead to film disruptions, indicating nano/microporosity, that increase oxygen ion diffusion and performance.

  15. Nonlinear stiffness characteristics of the annular ligament.

    PubMed

    Lauxmann, M; Eiber, A; Haag, F; Ihrle, S

    2014-10-01

    The annular ligament provides a compliant connection of the stapes to the oval window. To estimate the stiffness characteristics of the annular ligament, human temporal bone measurements were conducted. A force was applied sequentially at several points on the stapes footplate leading to different patterns of displacement with different amounts of translational and rotational components. The spatial displacement of the stapes footplate was measured using a laser vibrometer. The experiments were performed on several stapes with dissected chain and the force was increased stepwise, resulting in load-deflection curves for each force application point. The annular ligament exhibited a progressive stiffening characteristic in combination with an inhomogeneous stiffness distribution. When a centric force, orientated in the lateral direction, was applied to the stapes footplate, the stapes head moved laterally and in the posterior-inferior direction. Based on the load-deflection curves, a mechanical model of the annular ligament was derived. The mathematical representation of the compliance of the annular ligament results in a stiffness matrix with a nonlinear dependence on stapes displacement. This description of the nonlinear stiffness allows simulations of the sound transfer behavior of the middle ear for different preloads. PMID:25324078

  16. Intra-abdominal pressure increases stiffness of the lumbar spine.

    PubMed

    Hodges, Paul W; Eriksson, A E Martin; Shirley, Debra; Gandevia, Simon C

    2005-09-01

    Intra-abdominal pressure (IAP) increases during many tasks and has been argued to increase stability and stiffness of the spine. Although several studies have shown a relationship between the IAP increase and spinal stability, it has been impossible to determine whether this augmentation of mechanical support for the spine is due to the increase in IAP or the abdominal muscle activity which contributes to it. The present study determined whether spinal stiffness increased when IAP increased without concurrent activity of the abdominal and back extensor muscles. A sustained increase in IAP was evoked by tetanic stimulation of the phrenic nerves either unilaterally or bilaterally at 20 Hz (for 5 s) via percutaneous electrodes in three subjects. Spinal stiffness was measured as the force required to displace an indentor over the L4 or L2 spinous process with the subjects lying prone. Stiffness was measured as the slope of the regression line fitted to the linear region of the force-displacement curve. Tetanic stimulation of the diaphragm increased IAP by 27-61% of a maximal voluntary pressure increase and increased the stiffness of the spine by 8-31% of resting levels. The increase in spinal stiffness was positively correlated with the size of the IAP increase. IAP increased stiffness at L2 and L4 level. The results of this study provide evidence that the stiffness of the lumbar spine is increased when IAP is elevated. PMID:16023475

  17. Establishment of a hybrid rainfall-runoff model for use in the Noah LSM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Jingwen; Zhang, Wanchang; Zheng, Ziyan; Chen, Jing; Jiao, Meiyan

    2012-02-01

    There is an increasing trend to incorporate the basin hydrological model into the traditional land surface model (LSM) to improve the description of hydrological processes in them. For incorporating with the Noah LSM, a new rainfall-runoff model named XXT (the first X stands for Xinanjiang, the second X stands for hybrid, and T stands for TOPMODEL) was developed and presented in this study, based on the soil moisture storage capacity distribution curve (SMSCC), some essential modules of the Xinanjiang model, together with the simple model framework of the TOPMODEL (a topography based hydrological model). The innovation of XXT is that the water table is incorporated into SMSCC and it connects the surface runoff production with base flow production. This improves the description of the dynamically varying saturated areas that produce runoff and also captures the physical underground water level. XXT was tested in a small-scale watershed Youshuijie (946 km2) and a large-scale watershed Yinglouxia (10009 km2) in China. The results show that XXT has better performance against the TOPMODEL and the Xinanjiang model for the two watersheds in both the calibration period and the validation period in terms of the Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency. Moreover, XXT captures the largest peak flow well for both the small- and large-scale watersheds during the validation period, while the TOPMODEL produces significant overestimates or underestimates, so does the Xinanjiang model.

  18. Boundary Stiffness Regulates Fibroblast Behavior in Collagen Gels

    PubMed Central

    John, Jeffrey; Quinlan, Angela Throm; Silvestri, Chiara; Billiar, Kristen

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies have illustrated the profound dependence of cellular behavior on the stiffness of 2D culture substrates. The goal of this study was to develop a method to alter the stiffness cells experience in a standard 3D collagen gel model without affecting the physiochemical properties of the extracellular matrix. A device was developed utilizing compliant anchors (0.0480.64 N m?1) to tune the boundary stiffness of suspended collagen gels in between the commonly utilized free and fixed conditions (zero and infinite stiffness boundary stiffness). We demonstrate the principle of operation with finite element analyses and a wide range of experimental studies. In all cases, boundary stiffness has a strong influence on cell behavior, most notably eliciting higher basal tension and activated force (in response to KCl) and more pronounced remodeling of the collagen matrix at higher boundary stiffness levels. Measured equibiaxial forces for gels seeded with 3 million human foreskin fibroblasts range from 0.05 to 1 mN increasing monotonically with boundary stiffness. Estimated force per cell ranges from 17 to 100 nN utilizing representative volume element analysis. This device provides a valuable tool to independently study the effect of the mechanical environment of the cell in a 3D collagen matrix. PMID:20012205

  19. 3D image registration is critical to ensure accurate detection of longitudinal changes in trabecular bone density, microstructure, and stiffness measurements in rat tibiae by in vivo microcomputed tomography (?CT).

    PubMed

    Lan, Shenghui; Luo, Shiming; Huh, Beom Kang; Chandra, Abhishek; Altman, Allison R; Qin, Ling; Liu, X Sherry

    2013-09-01

    In the recent decade, in vivo ?CT scanners have become available to monitor temporal changes in rodent bone in response to diseases and treatments. We investigated short-term and long-term precision of in vivo ?CT measurements of trabecular bone density, microstructure and stiffness of rat tibiae and tested whether they can be improved by 3D image registration. Rats in the short-term precision group underwent baseline and follow-up scans within the same day (n = 15) and those in the long-term precision group were scanned at day 0 and day 14 (n = 16) at 10.5 ?m voxel size. A 3D image-registration scheme was applied to register the trabecular bone compartments of baseline and follow-up scans. Prior to image registration, short-term precision ranged between 0.85% and 2.65% in bone volume fraction (BV/TV), trabecular number, thickness, and spacing (Tb.N*, Tb.Th*, Tb.Sp*), trabecular bone mineral density and tissue mineral density (Tb.BMD, and Tb.TMD), and was particularly high in structure model index (SMI), connectivity density (Conn.D), and stiffness (4.29%-8.83%). Image registration tended to improve the short-term precision, but the only statistically significant improvement was in Tb.N*, Tb.TMD, and stiffness. On the other hand, unregistered comparisons between day-0 and day-14 scans suggested significant increases in BV/TV, Tb.N*, Tb.Th*, Conn.D, and Tb.BMD and decrease in Tb.Sp* and SMI. However, the percent change in each parameter from registered comparisons was significantly different from unregistered comparisons. Registered results suggested a significant increase in BV/TV, Tb.BMD, and stiffness over 14 days, primarily caused by increased Tb.Th* and Tb.TMD. Due to the continuous growth of rodents, the direct comparisons between the unregistered baseline and follow-up scans were driven by changes due to global bone modeling instead of local remodeling. Our results suggested that 3D image registration is critical for detecting changes due to bone remodeling activities in rodent trabecular bone by in vivo ?CT imaging. PMID:23727434

  20. Stiffness Corrections for the Vibration Frequency of a Stretched Wire

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hornung, H. G.; Durie, M. J.

    1977-01-01

    Discusses the need of introducing corrections due to wire stiffness arising from end constraints and wire axis distribution curvature in the measurement of ac electrical frequency by exciting transverse standing waves in a stretched steel wire. (SL)

  1. A Comparison of Total and Intrinsic Muscle Stiffness Among Flexors and Extensors of the Ankle, Knee and Elbow

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lemoine, Sandra M.

    1997-01-01

    This study examined 3 methods that assessed muscle stiffness. Muscle stiffness has been quantified by tissue reactive force (transverse stiffness), vibration, and force (or torque) over displacement. Muscle stiffness also has two components: reflex (due to muscle sensor activity) and intrinsic (tonic firing of motor units, elastic nature of actin and myosin cross bridges, and connective tissue). This study compared three methods of measuring muscle stiffness of agonist-antagonist muscle pairs of the ankle, knee and elbow.

  2. Effect of Pressure on Liver Stiffness During the Development ofLiver Fibrosis in Rabbits.

    PubMed

    Tang, Wen Bo; Xu, Qing Hua; Jiao, Zi Yu; Wu, Rong; Song, Qing; Luo, Yu Kun

    2016-01-01

    This study was designed to investigate whether hepatic arterial pressure and portal pressure have aneffect on liver stiffness during the development of liver fibrosis. Liver fibrosis was induced in 50 healthy New Zealand white rabbits. Laparotomy was performed to measure liver stiffness, and the portal vein and hepatic artery were successively ligated to repeat the measurements. A significant difference was observed among liverstiffness values measured at different time points (F= 22.82, p < 0.001). Differences between original liverstiffness and liver stiffness measured after portal ligation were positively correlated with portal pressure (r= 0.801, p < 0.001). In animals with grade 4 liver fibrosis, the increase in liver stiffness caused by pressure was greater than that caused by extracellular matrix accumulation (p= 0.002). In conclusion, hepatic arterial pressure and portal pressure have a significant effect on liver stiffness during the development of liver fibrosis. PMID:26497767

  3. Life prediction for white OLED based on LSM under lognormal distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jianping; Liu, Fang; Liu, Yu; Wu, Helen; Zhu, Wenqing; Wu, Wenli; Wu, Liang

    2012-09-01

    In order to acquire the reliability information of White Organic Light Emitting Display (OLED), three groups of OLED constant stress accelerated life tests (CSALTs) were carried out to obtain failure data of samples. Lognormal distribution function was applied to describe OLED life distribution, and the accelerated life equation was determined by Least square method (LSM). The Kolmogorov-Smirnov test was performed to verify whether the white OLED life meets lognormal distribution or not. Author-developed software was employed to predict the average life and the median life. The numerical results indicate that the white OLED life submits to lognormal distribution, and that the accelerated life equation meets inverse power law completely. The estimated life information of the white OLED provides manufacturers and customers with important guidelines.

  4. Initial results from FRC (field-reversed configuration) compression experiments on FRX-C/LSM

    SciTech Connect

    Rej, D.J.; Barnes, G.A.; Baron, M.H.; Chrien, R.E.; Siemon, R.E.; Slough, J.T.; Taggart, D.P.; Takahashi, T.; Tuszewski, M.; Wright, B.L.; Auburn Univ., AL; Los Alamos National Lab., NM; Spectra Technology, Inc., Bellevue, WA; Los Alamos National Lab., NM; Nihon Univ., Tokyo; Los Alamos National Lab., NM )

    1989-01-01

    After more than two years of preparation, high-power FRC compression heating studies are now underway on the Los Alamos FRX-C/LSM facility. Field-reversed configuration plasmas are formed and translated out of the {theta}-pinch source, and into a compressor where the external B-field can be increased from 0.4 to 2 T in 55 {mu}s. A principal experimental goal is to study FRC confinement at the high energy density, n(T{sub e} + T{sub i}) {le} 1.0 {times} 10{sup 22} keV/m{sup 3}, associated with the large external field. In this paper, we report on the first experiments which were performed between April and July, 1989. 9 refs., 5 figs.

  5. Arterial Stiffness, Distensibility, and Strain in Asthmatic Children

    PubMed Central

    Özkan, Esra Akyüz; Serin, Halil İbrahim; Khosroshahi, Hashem E.; Kılıç, Mahmut; Ekim, Meral; Beysel, Perihan; Geçit, U. Aliye; Domur, Esra

    2016-01-01

    Background We hypothesized that since asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease, it could lead to the early development of atherosclerosis in childhood-onset asthma. The aim of this study was to investigate arterial stiffness, distensibility, and strain of different peripheral arteries, the parameters of which can be used to detect atherosclerosis in asthmatic children. Material/Methods We studied 22 pediatric patients with asthma and 18 healthy children. Fasting blood glucose and cholesterol levels were evaluated to exclude children with diabetes and hyperlipidemia, which are risk factors for atherosclerosis. Renal, carotid, and brachial arteries diameters were measured. Using the measured data, stiffness, distensibility, and strain of the arteries of all children were calculated. Results Pulse pressure, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, heart rate, cholesterols, and glucose levels of the obese individuals were similar to the controls. In carotid arteries there were no statistical differences regarding stiffness, distensibility, and strain. According to multiple ANCOVA analysis, distensibility and strain of right and left brachial arteries and right renal artery were higher, whereas right renal artery stiffness was lower in asthmatic children than in controls. Approximately one-fifth of the change in the left and right brachial arteries and right renal artery distensibility and strain and a small portion of the change in the right renal artery stiffness were associated with asthma. In contrast, left renal artery distensibility, strain, and stiffness were not associated with asthma. Conclusions Peripheral arteries had higher distensibility and strain, and lower stiffness in asthmatic children than in controls. PMID:26803723

  6. Arterial stiffness and cognitive function in the elderly

    PubMed Central

    Hazzouri, Adina Zeki Al; Yaffe, Kristine

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive decline and dementia are a major cause of disability and mortality among older adults. Cross-sectional evidence from observational studies suggests that greater arterial stiffness is associated with worse cognitive performance. These associations have been observed on measures of global cognition and across multiple domains of cognition. Epidemiologic evidence on the association between arterial stiffness and rate of cognitive decline has been less definitive, and very few studies have investigated the risk of developing dementia. This review summarizes the current research on arterial stiffness and cognition, issues around measurement and the effect that potential intervention might have on the course of cognitive aging. The evidence on pharmacological and non-pharmacological (exercise, nutrition, etc) interventions in older adults with arterial stiffness is promising. Yet there are no studies or trials that directly evaluate how interventions of arterial stiffness reduce or prevent cognitive impairment and risk of developing dementia. More research is needed to elucidate the causal link between arterial stiffness and cognitive decline and dementia, and to identify whether potential interventions to prevent or reduce arterial stiffness may benefit cognitive health of the elderly. PMID:25351110

  7. Arterial Stiffness, Distensibility, and Strain in Asthmatic Children.

    PubMed

    Akyz zkan, Esra; Serin, Halil ?brahim; Khosroshahi, Hashem E; K?l?, Mahmut; Ekim, Meral; Beysel, Perihan; Geit, U Aliye; Domur, Esra

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND We hypothesized that since asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease, it could lead to the early development of atherosclerosis in childhood-onset asthma. The aim of this study was to investigate arterial stiffness, distensibility, and strain of different peripheral arteries, the parameters of which can be used to detect atherosclerosis in asthmatic children. MATERIAL AND METHODS We studied 22 pediatric patients with asthma and 18 healthy children. Fasting blood glucose and cholesterol levels were evaluated to exclude children with diabetes and hyperlipidemia, which are risk factors for atherosclerosis. Renal, carotid, and brachial arteries diameters were measured. Using the measured data, stiffness, distensibility, and strain of the arteries of all children were calculated. RESULTS Pulse pressure, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, heart rate, cholesterols, and glucose levels of the obese individuals were similar to the controls. In carotid arteries there were no statistical differences regarding stiffness, distensibility, and strain. According to multiple ANCOVA analysis, distensibility and strain of right and left brachial arteries and right renal artery were higher, whereas right renal artery stiffness was lower in asthmatic children than in controls. Approximately one-fifth of the change in the left and right brachial arteries and right renal artery distensibility and strain and a small portion of the change in the right renal artery stiffness were associated with asthma. In contrast, left renal artery distensibility, strain, and stiffness were not associated with asthma. CONCLUSIONS Peripheral arteries had higher distensibility and strain, and lower stiffness in asthmatic children than in controls. PMID:26803723

  8. The Lsm2-8 complex determines nuclear localization of the spliceosomal U6 snRNA

    PubMed Central

    Spiller, Michael P.; Boon, Kum-Loong; Reijns, Martin A. M.; Beggs, Jean D.

    2007-01-01

    Lsm proteins are ubiquitous, multifunctional proteins that are involved in the processing and/or turnover of many, if not all, RNAs in eukaryotes. They generally interact only transiently with their substrate RNAs, in keeping with their likely roles as RNA chaperones. The spliceosomal U6 snRNA is an exception, being stably associated with the Lsm2-8 complex. The U6 snRNA is generally considered to be intrinsically nuclear but the mechanism of its nuclear retention has not been demonstrated, although La protein has been implicated. We show here that the complete Lsm2-8 complex is required for nuclear accumulation of U6 snRNA in yeast. Therefore, just as Sm proteins effect nuclear localization of the other spliceosomal snRNPs, the Lsm proteins mediate U6 snRNP localization except that nuclear retention is the likely mechanism for the U6 snRNP. La protein, which binds only transiently to the nascent U6 transcript, has a smaller, apparently indirect, effect on U6 localization that is compatible with its proposed role as a chaperone in facilitating U6 snRNP assembly. PMID:17251193

  9. A bipolar functionality of Q/N-rich proteins: Lsm4 amyloid causes clearance of yeast prions

    PubMed Central

    Oishi, Keita; Kurahashi, Hiroshi; Pack, Chan-Gi; Sako, Yasushi; Nakamura, Yoshikazu

    2013-01-01

    Prions are epigenetic modifiers that cause partially loss-of-function phenotypes of the proteins in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The molecular chaperone network that supports prion propagation in the cell has seen a great progress in the last decade. However, the cellular machinery to activate or deactivate the prion states remains an enigma, largely due to insufficient knowledge of prion-regulating factors. Here, we report that overexpression of a [PSI+]-inducible Q/N-rich protein, Lsm4, eliminates the three major prions [PSI+], [URE3], and [RNQ+]. Subcloning analysis revealed that the Q/N-rich region of Lsm4 is responsible for the prion loss. Lsm4 formed an amyloid in vivo, which seemed to play a crucial role in the prion elimination. Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy analysis revealed that in the course of the Lsm4-driven [PSI+] elimination, the [PSI+] aggregates undergo a size increase, which ultimately results in the formation of conspicuous foci in otherwise [psi?]-like mother cells. We also found that the antiprion activity is a general property of [PSI+]-inducible factors. These data provoked a novel unified model that explains both prion induction and elimination by a single scheme. PMID:23512891

  10. Microfinish As A Function Of Machine Stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watt, Gordon J.

    1987-01-01

    Stiffness of a machine must be known between the tip of the cutting tool and the surface being machined in order to correlate with microfinish. Signature of the machine tool and its environs are registered on the micro-machined surface. Imperfections are triggered by disturbances which may originate off the machine, from the machine, or by reaction between the tool and the workpiece. The machine transfer function is a complex mechanical system with many input points and resonance frequencies to be contended with. This paper deals with recognizable surface imperfections which are related back to mechanical parameters in and between the machine elements. To be complete, one must include spindles, slides, supports, vibration isolators, tool holders, tools, fixtures, and the workpiece itself. Their relation to sources of disturbance is discussed and examples are given of surface measurements made which identify the relation between machine stiffness and microfinish signatures.

  11. Effect of ECM Stiffness on Integrin-Ligand Binding Strength

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Gawain; Wen, Qi

    2014-03-01

    Many studies have shown that cells respond to the stiffness of their extracellular matrix (ECM). However, the mechanism of this stiffness sensing is not fully understood. We believe that cells probe stiffness by applying intracellular force to the ECM via the integrin-mediated adhesions. The linkage of integrins to the cytoskeleton has been modeled as a slip clutch, which has been shown to affect focal adhesion formation and hence force transmission in a stiffness dependent manner. In contrast, the bonds between integrins and ECM have been characterized as ``catch bonds.'' It is unclear how ECM viscoelasticity affects these catch bonds. We report, for the first time, the effects of ECM stiffness on the binding strength of integrins to ECM ligands by measuring the rupture force of individual integrin-ligand bonds of cells on collagen-coated polyacrylamide gels. Results show that the integrin-collagen bonds of 3T3 fibroblasts are nearly four times stronger on a stiff (30 kPa) gel than on a soft (3 kPa) gel. The stronger integrin bonds on stiffer substrates can promote focal adhesion formation. This suggests that the substrate stiffness regulates the cell-ECM adhesions not only by affecting the cytoskeleton-integrin links but also by modulating the binding of integrins to the ECM.

  12. Simvastatin Ameliorates Matrix Stiffness-Mediated Endothelial Monolayer Disruption

    PubMed Central

    Lampi, Marsha C.; Faber, Courtney J.; Huynh, John; Bordeleau, Francois; Zanotelli, Matthew R.; Reinhart-King, Cynthia A.

    2016-01-01

    Arterial stiffening accompanies both aging and atherosclerosis, and age-related stiffening of the arterial intima increases RhoA activity and cell contractility contributing to increased endothelium permeability. Notably, statins are 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitors whose pleiotropic effects include disrupting small GTPase activity; therefore, we hypothesized the statin simvastatin could be used to attenuate RhoA activity and inhibit the deleterious effects of increased age-related matrix stiffness on endothelial barrier function. Using polyacrylamide gels with stiffnesses of 2.5, 5, and 10 kPa to mimic the physiological stiffness of young and aged arteries, endothelial cells were grown to confluence and treated with simvastatin. Our data indicate that RhoA and phosphorylated myosin light chain activity increase with matrix stiffness but are attenuated when treated with the statin. Increases in cell contractility, cell-cell junction size, and indirect measurements of intercellular tension that increase with matrix stiffness, and are correlated with matrix stiffness-dependent increases in monolayer permeability, also decrease with statin treatment. Furthermore, we report that simvastatin increases activated Rac1 levels that contribute to endothelial barrier enhancing cytoskeletal reorganization. Simvastatin, which is prescribed clinically due to its ability to lower cholesterol, alters the endothelial cell response to increased matrix stiffness to restore endothelial monolayer barrier function, and therefore, presents a possible therapeutic intervention to prevent atherogenesis initiated by age-related arterial stiffening. PMID:26761203

  13. Dynamic dorsoventral stiffness assessment of the ovine lumbar spine.

    PubMed

    Keller, Tony S; Colloca, Christopher J

    2007-01-01

    Posteroanterior spinal stiffness assessments are common in the evaluating patients with low back pain. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of mechanical excitation frequency on dynamic lumbar spine stiffness. A computer-controlled voice coil actuator equipped with a load cell and LVDT was used to deliver an oscillatory dorsoventral (DV) mechanical force to the L3 spinous process of 15 adolescent Merino sheep. DV forces (48 N peak, approximately 10% body weight) were randomly applied at periodic excitation frequencies of 2.0, 6.0, 11.7 and a 0.5-19.7 Hz sweep. Force and displacement were recorded over a 13-22 s time interval. The in vivo DV stiffness of the ovine spine was frequency dependent and varied 3.7-fold over the 0.5-19.7 Hz mechanical excitation frequency range. Minimum and maximum DV stiffness (force/displacement) were 3.86+/-0.38 and 14.1+/-9.95 N/mm at 4.0 and 19.7 Hz, respectively. Stiffness values based on the swept-sine measurements were not significantly different from corresponding periodic oscillations (2.0 and 6.0 Hz). The mean coefficient of variation in the swept-sine DV dynamic stiffness assessment method was 15%, which was similar to the periodic oscillation method (10-16%). The results indicate that changes in mechanical excitation frequency and animal body mass modulate DV spinal stiffness. PMID:16376350

  14. Effect of Spinach, a High Dietary Nitrate Source, on Arterial Stiffness and Related Hemodynamic Measures: A Randomized, Controlled Trial in Healthy Adults.

    PubMed

    Jovanovski, Elena; Bosco, Laura; Khan, Kashif; Au-Yeung, Fei; Ho, Hoang; Zurbau, Andreea; Jenkins, Alexandra L; Vuksan, Vladimir

    2015-07-01

    Diets rich in fruits and vegetables reduce risk of adverse cardiovascular events. However, the constituents responsible for this effect have not been well established. Lately, the attention has been brought to vegetables with high nitrate content with evidence that this might represent a source of vasoprotective nitric oxide. We hypothesized that short-term consumption of spinach, a vegetable having high dietary nitrate content, can affect the arterial waveform indicative of arterial stiffness, as well as central and peripheral blood pressure (BP). Using a placebo-controlled, crossover design, 27 healthy participants were randomly assigned to receive either a high-nitrate (spinach; 845 mg nitrate/day) or low-nitrate soup (asparagus; 0.6 mg nitrate/day) for 7 days with a 1-week washout period. On days 1 and 7, profiles of augmentation index, central, and brachial BP were obtained over 180 min post-consumption in 4 fasted visits. A postprandial reduction in augmentation index was observed at 180 min on high-nitrate compared to low-nitrate intervention (-6.54 9.7% vs. -0.82 8.0%, p = 0.01) on Day 1, and from baseline on Day 7 (-6.93 8.7%, p < 0.001; high vs. low: -2.28 12.5%, p = 0.35), suggesting that the nitrate intervention is not associated with the development of tolerance for at least 7 days of continued supplementation. High vs. low-nitrate intervention also reduced central systolic (-3.39 5.6 mmHg, p = 0.004) and diastolic BP (-2.60 5.8 mmHg, p = 0.028) and brachial systolic BP (-3.48 7.4 mmHg, p = 0.022) at 180 min following 7-day supplementation only. These findings suggest that dietary nitrate from spinach may contribute to beneficial hemodynamic effects of vegetable-rich diets and highlights the potential of developing a targeted dietary approach in the management of elevated BP. PMID:26251834

  15. Effect of Spinach, a High Dietary Nitrate Source, on Arterial Stiffness and Related Hemodynamic Measures: A Randomized, Controlled Trial in Healthy Adults

    PubMed Central

    Jovanovski, Elena; Bosco, Laura; Khan, Kashif; Au-Yeung, Fei; Ho, Hoang; Zurbau, Andreea; Jenkins, Alexandra L.

    2015-01-01

    Diets rich in fruits and vegetables reduce risk of adverse cardiovascular events. However, the constituents responsible for this effect have not been well established. Lately, the attention has been brought to vegetables with high nitrate content with evidence that this might represent a source of vasoprotective nitric oxide. We hypothesized that short-term consumption of spinach, a vegetable having high dietary nitrate content, can affect the arterial waveform indicative of arterial stiffness, as well as central and peripheral blood pressure (BP). Using a placebo-controlled, crossover design, 27 healthy participants were randomly assigned to receive either a high-nitrate (spinach; 845 mg nitrate/day) or low-nitrate soup (asparagus; 0.6 mg nitrate/day) for 7 days with a 1-week washout period. On days 1 and 7, profiles of augmentation index, central, and brachial BP were obtained over 180 min post-consumption in 4 fasted visits. A postprandial reduction in augmentation index was observed at 180 min on high-nitrate compared to low-nitrate intervention (-6.54 ± 9.7% vs. -0.82 ± 8.0%, p = 0.01) on Day 1, and from baseline on Day 7 (-6.93 ± 8.7%, p < 0.001; high vs. low: -2.28 ± 12.5%, p = 0.35), suggesting that the nitrate intervention is not associated with the development of tolerance for at least 7 days of continued supplementation. High vs. low-nitrate intervention also reduced central systolic (-3.39 ± 5.6 mmHg, p = 0.004) and diastolic BP (-2.60 ± 5.8 mmHg, p = 0.028) and brachial systolic BP (-3.48 ± 7.4 mmHg, p = 0.022) at 180 min following 7-day supplementation only. These findings suggest that dietary nitrate from spinach may contribute to beneficial hemodynamic effects of vegetable-rich diets and highlights the potential of developing a targeted dietary approach in the management of elevated BP. PMID:26251834

  16. Impact of blood pressure perturbations on arterial stiffness.

    PubMed

    Lim, Jisok; Pearman, Miriam E; Park, Wonil; Alkatan, Mohammed; Machin, Daniel R; Tanaka, Hirofumi

    2015-12-15

    Although the associations between chronic levels of arterial stiffness and blood pressure (BP) have been fairly well studied, it is not clear whether and how much arterial stiffness is influenced by acute perturbations in BP. The primary aim of this study was to determine magnitudes of BP dependence of various measures of arterial stiffness during acute BP perturbation maneuvers. Fifty apparently healthy subjects, including 25 young (20-40 yr) and 25 older adults (60-80 yr), were studied. A variety of BP perturbations, including head-up tilt, head-down tilt, mental stress, isometric handgrip exercise, and cold pressor test, were used to encompass BP changes induced by physical, mental, and/or mechanical stimuli. When each index of arterial stiffness was plotted with mean BP, all arterial stiffness indices, including cardio-ankle vascular index or CAVI (r = 0.50), carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity or cfPWV (r = 0.51), brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity or baPWV (r = 0.61), arterial compliance (r = -0.42), elastic modulus (r = 0.52), arterial distensibility (r = -0.32), ?-stiffness index (r = 0.19), and Young's modulus (r = 0.35) were related to mean BP (all P < 0.01). Changes in CAVI, cfPWV, baPWV, and elastic modulus were significantly associated with changes in mean BP in the pooled conditions, while changes in arterial compliance, arterial distensibility, ?-stiffness index, and Young's modulus were not. In conclusion, this study demonstrated that BP changes in response to various forms of pressor stimuli were associated with the corresponding changes in arterial stiffness indices and that the strengths of associations with BP varied widely depending on what arterial stiffness indices were examined. PMID:26468262

  17. ARTHROSCOPIC TREATMENT OF ELBOW STIFFNESS

    PubMed Central

    Vieira, Luis Alfredo Gómez; Dal Molin, Fabio Farina; Visco, Adalberto; Fernandes, Luis Filipe Daneu; dos Santos, Murilo Cunha Rafael; Cardozo Filho, Nivaldo Souza; Gómez Cordero, Nicolas Gerardo

    2015-01-01

    To present the arthroscopic surgical technique and the evaluation of the results from this technique for treating elbow stiffness. Methods: Between April 2007 and January 2010, ten elbows of ten patients with elbow stiffness underwent arthroscopic treatment to release the range of motion. The minimum follow-up was 11 months, with an average of 27 months. All the patients were male and their average age was 32.8 years (ranging from 22 to 48 years). After the arthroscopic treatment, they were followed up weekly in the first month and every three months thereafter. The clinical evaluation was made using the criteria of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). Results: All the patients were satisfied with the results from the arthroscopic treatment. The average UCLA score was 33.8 points. Conclusion: Arthroscopic treatment for elbow stiffness is a minimally invasive surgical technique that was shown to be efficient for treating this complication.

  18. Circulating adhesion molecules and arterial stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Dogu Kilic, Ismail; Alihanoglu, Yusuf I; Yildiz, Bekir Serhat; Evrengul, Harun; Findikoglu, Gulin; Uslu, Sukriye; Rota, Simin

    2015-01-01

    Summary Aim VCAM-1 and ICAM-1 are two important members of the immunoglobulin gene superfamily of adhesion molecules, and their potential role as biomarkers of diagnosis, severity and prognosis of cardiovascular disease has been investigated in a number of clinical studies. The aim of the present study was to determine the relationship between circulating ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 levels and aortic stiffness in patients referred for echocardiographic examination. Methods Aortic distensibility was determined by echocardiography using systolic and diastolic aortic diameters in 63 consecutive patients referred for echocardiography. Venous samples were collected in the morning after a 12-hour overnight fast, and serum concentrations of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 were measured using commercial enzyme immunoassay kits. Results Data of a total of 63 participants (mean age 55.6 10.5 years, 31 male) were included in the study. Circulating levels of adhesion molecules were VCAM-1: 12.604 3.904 ng/ml and ICAM-1: 45.417 31.429 ng/ml. We were unable to demonstrate any correlation between indices of aortic stiffness and VCAM-1 and ICAM-1 levels. Conclusion The role of soluble adhesion molecules in cardiovascular disease has not been fully established and clinical studies show inconsistent results. Our results indicate that levels of circulating adhesion molecules cannot be used as markers of aortic stiffness in patients. PMID:25784313

  19. Aortic stiffness in normal and hypertensive pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Avni, B; Frenkel, G; Shahar, L; Golik, A; Sherman, D; Dishy, V

    2010-02-01

    The objective of this study was to examine whether aortic stiffness, as assessed by pulse wave analysis, could reliably discriminate between normal and hypertensive pregnancies. One hundred pregnant women were studied: five with severe pre-eclampsia, 27 with gestational hypertension, 14 with chronic hypertension and 54 with normal pregnancy. Central hemodynamic parameters were obtained by an applanation tonometry and included central aortic systolic blood pressure (CSBP), central aortic diastolic blood pressure (CDBP), augmentation pressure (AP), augmentation index (AIx), AIx corrected to a heart rate of 75 (AIx@75) and time to reflection (Tr). All measures of aortic stiffness, including AP, AIx and AIx@75 were significantly higher in women with gestational hypertension and pre-eclampsia compared with normal pregnancies and women with chronic hypertension (p < 0.05 for all comparisons). There were no significant differences between normal pregnancies and women with chronic hypertension (p > 0.05 for all comparisons). Tr was significantly shorter in women with pre-eclampsia and gestational hypertension compared with normal pregnancies (p < 0.05). Aortic stiffness, as assessed by pulse wave analysis, is significantly increased in women with pre-eclampsia and gestational hypertension but not in treated women with chronic hypertension. Pulse wave analysis has a potential as a screening tool in women at high risk for pre-eclampsia. The final role of this method should be determined in prospective studies. PMID:20001391

  20. Rationale and study design of the Prospective comparison of Angiotensin Receptor neprilysin inhibitor with Angiotensin receptor blocker MEasuring arterial sTiffness in the eldERly (PARAMETER) study

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Bryan; Cockcroft, John R; Kario, Kazuomi; Zappe, Dion H; Cardenas, Pamela; Hester, Allen; Brunel, Patrick; Zhang, Jack

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Hypertension in elderly people is characterised by elevated systolic blood pressure (SBP) and increased pulse pressure (PP), which indicate large artery ageing and stiffness. LCZ696, a first-in-class angiotensin receptor neprilysin inhibitor (ARNI), is being developed to treat hypertension and heart failure. The Prospective comparison of Angiotensin Receptor neprilysin inhibitor with Angiotensin receptor blocker MEasuring arterial sTiffness in the eldERly (PARAMETER) study will assess the efficacy of LCZ696 versus olmesartan on aortic stiffness and central aortic haemodynamics. Methods and analysis In this 52-week multicentre study, patients with hypertension aged ≥60 years with a mean sitting (ms) SBP ≥150 to <180 and a PP>60 mm Hg will be randomised to once daily LCZ696 200 mg or olmesartan 20 mg for 4 weeks, followed by a forced-titration to double the initial doses for the next 8 weeks. At 12–24 weeks, if the BP target has not been attained (msSBP <140  and ms diastolic BP <90 mm Hg), amlodipine (2.5–5 mg) and subsequently hydrochlorothiazide (6.25–25 mg) can be added. The primary and secondary endpoints are changes from baseline in central aortic systolic pressure (CASP) and central aortic PP (CAPP) at week 12, respectively. Other secondary endpoints are the changes in CASP and CAPP at week 52. A sample size of 432 randomised patients is estimated to ensure a power of 90% to assess the superiority of LCZ696 over olmesartan at week 12 in the change from baseline of mean CASP, assuming an SD of 19 mm Hg, the difference of 6.5 mm Hg and a 15% dropout rate. The primary variable will be analysed using a two-way analysis of covariance. Ethics and dissemination The study was initiated in December 2012 and final results are expected in 2015. The results of this study will impact the design of future phase III studies assessing cardiovascular protection. Clinical trials identifier EUDract number 2012-002899-14 and ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01692301. PMID:24496699

  1. Nonlinear Dynamics of Stiff Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldstein, Raymond E.; Langer, Stephen A.

    1995-08-01

    A formalism is presented for the nonlinear dynamics of inextensible stiff polymers within the model of local viscous dissipation. By casting the internal elastic forces in an intrinsic representation, enforcing the constraint of local inextensibility through a Lagrange multiplier function, and utilizing techniques from the differential geometry of curve motion, the dynamics of configurations of arbitrary complexity is reduced to a scalar partial differential equation amenable to analytical and efficient numerical study. As an example, the formalism is applied to the ``folding'' dynamics of stiff polymers with pairwise self-interactions and intrinsic curvature.

  2. Deletion of the Sm1 encoding motif in the lsm gene results in distinct changes in the transcriptome and enhanced swarming activity of Haloferax cells.

    PubMed

    Maier, Lisa-Katharina; Benz, Juliane; Fischer, Susan; Alstetter, Martina; Jaschinski, Katharina; Hilker, Rolf; Becker, Anke; Allers, Thorsten; Soppa, Jrg; Marchfelder, Anita

    2015-10-01

    Members of the Sm protein family are important for the cellular RNA metabolism in all three domains of life. The family includes archaeal and eukaryotic Lsm proteins, eukaryotic Sm proteins and archaeal and bacterial Hfq proteins. While several studies concerning the bacterial and eukaryotic family members have been published, little is known about the archaeal Lsm proteins. Although structures for several archaeal Lsm proteins have been solved already more than ten years ago, we still do not know much about their biological function, however one can confidently propose that the archaeal Lsm proteins will also be involved in RNA metabolism. Therefore, we investigated this protein in the halophilic archaeon Haloferax volcanii. The Haloferax genome encodes a single Lsm protein, the lsm gene overlaps and is co-transcribed with the gene for the ribosomal L37.eR protein. Here, we show that the reading frame of the lsm gene contains a promoter which regulates expression of the overlapping rpl37R gene. This rpl37R specific promoter ensures high expression of the rpl37R gene in exponential growth phase. To investigate the biological function of the Lsm protein we generated a lsm deletion mutant that had the coding sequence for the Sm1 motif removed but still contained the internal promoter for the downstream rpl37R gene. The transcriptome of this deletion mutant was compared to the wild type transcriptome, revealing that several genes are down-regulated and many genes are up-regulated in the deletion strain. Northern blot analyses confirmed down-regulation of two genes. In addition, the deletion strain showed a gain of function in swarming, in congruence with the up-regulation of transcripts encoding proteins required for motility. PMID:25754521

  3. Effects of age and diabetes on scleral stiffness.

    PubMed

    Coudrillier, Baptiste; Pijanka, Jacek; Jefferys, Joan; Sorensen, Thomas; Quigley, Harry A; Boote, Craig; Nguyen, Thao D

    2015-07-01

    The effects of diabetes on the collagen structure and material properties of the sclera are unknown but may be important to elucidate whether diabetes is a risk factor for major ocular diseases such as glaucoma. This study provides a quantitative assessment of the changes in scleral stiffness and collagen fiber alignment associated with diabetes. Posterior scleral shells from five diabetic donors and seven non-diabetic donors were pressurized to 30?mm Hg. Three-dimensional surface displacements were calculated during inflation testing using digital image correlation (DIC). After testing, each specimen was subjected to wide-angle X-ray scattering (WAXS) measurements of its collagen organization. Specimen-specific finite element models of the posterior scleras were generated from the experimentally measured geometry. An inverse finite element analysis was developed to determine the material properties of the specimens, i.e., matrix and fiber stiffness, by matching DIC-measured and finite element predicted displacement fields. Effects of age and diabetes on the degree of fiber alignment, matrix and collagen fiber stiffness, and mechanical anisotropy were estimated using mixed effects models accounting for spatial autocorrelation. Older age was associated with a lower degree of fiber alignment and larger matrix stiffness for both diabetic and non-diabetic scleras. However, the age-related increase in matrix stiffness was 87% larger in diabetic specimens compared to non-diabetic controls and diabetic scleras had a significantly larger matrix stiffness (p?=?0.01). Older age was associated with a nearly significant increase in collagen fiber stiffness for diabetic specimens only (p?=?0.06), as well as a decrease in mechanical anisotropy for non-diabetic scleras only (p?=?0.04). The interaction between age and diabetes was not significant for all outcomes. This study suggests that the age-related increase in scleral stiffness is accelerated in eyes with diabetes, which may have important implications in glaucoma. PMID:25751456

  4. Modulation of ankle stiffness during postural sway.

    PubMed

    Lang, Christopher B; Kearney, Robert E

    2014-01-01

    Ankle stiffness is a nonlinear, time-varying system which contributes to the control of human upright stance. This study sought to examine the nature of the contribution of stiffness to postural control by determining how intrinsic and reflex stiffnesses varied with sway. Subjects were instructed to stand quietly on a bilateral electro-hydraulic actuator while perturbations were applied about the ankle. Subjects performed three types of trials: normal stance, forward lean, and backward lean. Position, torque, and EMGs from the tibialis anterior and triceps surae were recorded. Background torque, intrinsic stiffness and reflex stiffness were calculated for each perturbation. Intrinsic and reflex stiffnesses were heavily modulated by postural sway. Moreover, they were modulated in a complimentary manner; intrinsic stiffness was lowest when reflex gain was highest, and vice versa. These findings suggest that intrinsic stiffness is modulated simultaneously with reflex stiffness to optimize the control of balance. PMID:25570884

  5. Bending Stiffness of Multiwall Sandwich

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blosser, M. L.

    1983-01-01

    An analytical and experimental study was carried out to understand the extensional and flexural behavior of multiwall sandwich, a metallic insulation composed of alternate layers of flat and dimpled foil. The multiwall sandwich was structurally analyzed by using several simplifying assumptions combined with a finite element analysis. The simplifying assumptions made in this analysis were evaluated by bending and tensile tests. Test results validate the assumption that flat sheets in compression do not significantly contribute to the flexural stiffness of multiwall sandwich for the multiwall geometry tested. However, calculations show that thicker flat sheets may contribute significantly to bending stiffness and cannot be ignored. Results of this analytical approach compare well with test data; both show that the extensional stiffness of the dimpled sheet in he 0 deg direction is about 30 percent of that for a flat sheet, and that in the 45 deg direction, it is about 10 percent. The analytical and experimental multiwall bending stiffness showed good agreement for the particular geometry tested.

  6. Arterial Stiffness, Kidney Function, and Chronic Kidney Disease Progression

    PubMed Central

    Townsend, Raymond R.; Tomiyama, Hirofumi

    2013-01-01

    Arterial stiffness can nowadays be measured easily and noninvasively around the globe. Although well established as an independent predictor of cardiovascular events, less is known about the role of arterial stiffness in the progressive loss of kidney function once chronic kidney disease (CKD) is established. In addition to measures of arterial stiffness, a number of devices now noninvasively record the pulse profile from sites such as the radial artery and, using internal algorithms, are able to estimate central pressure profiles. Although these devices have generated much data on the prediction of cardiovascular events, e.g. measures of arterial stiffness, there is much less known about the predictive utility of these measures in CKD progression. In this review, we cover approaches to arterial stiffness as measured by pulse wave velocity and discuss measures of the systolic and diastolic contour of the pulse waveform vis--vis their relationship to declines in kidney function over time. We restrict our coverage to studies that have longitudinal data, but we also include a table of studies, which, to our knowledge, have only published cross-sectional data at this time. PMID:26587431

  7. Follow-up of ankle stiffness and electromechanical delay in immobilized children: three cases studies.

    PubMed

    Grosset, Jean-Franois; Lapole, Thomas; Mora, Isabelle; Verhaeghe, Martine; Doutrellot, Pierre-Louis; Prot, Chantal

    2010-08-01

    Clinical manual tests refer to increased ankle stiffness in children immobilized due to hip osteochondritis. The aim of the present study was to investigate musculo-articular stiffness via different techniques in immobilized children to confirm or not and quantify these observations. Ankle stiffness was quantified monthly during the long immobilization period in three diseased children and compared to healthy age-matched children. Sinusoidal perturbations were used to evaluate musculo-articular (MA) stiffness of the ankle plantar-flexors. The stiffness index (SI(MA-EMG)) was the slope of the linear relationship between angular stiffness and plantar-flexion torque normalized with electromyographic activity of the triceps surae (TS). The stiffness of the ankle plantar-flexors was also indirectly evaluated using the TS electromechanical delay (EMD). SI(MA-EMG) was greater for diseased children, and this higher stiffness was confirmed by the higher EMD values found in these immobilized children. Furthermore, both parameters indicated that ankle stiffness continues to increase through immobilization period. This study gives a quantitative evaluation of ankle stiffness changes through the immobilization period imposed to children treated for hip osteochondritis. The use of EMD measurement to indirectly evaluate these stiffness changes is also validated. This study shed for the first time some light into the patterns of muscle modifications following immobilization in children. PMID:20189829

  8. Influence of Compression and Stiffness Apparel on Vertical Jump Performance.

    PubMed

    Wannop, John W; Worobets, Jay T; Madden, Ryan; Stefanyshyn, Darren J

    2016-04-01

    Wannop, JW, Worobets, JT, Madden, R, and Stefanyshyn, DJ. Influence of compression and stiffness apparel on vertical jump performance. J Strength Cond Res 30(4): 1093-1101, 2016-Compression apparel alters both compression of the soft tissues and the hip joint stiffness of athletes. It is not known whether it is the compression elements, the stiffness elements, or some combination that increases performance. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine how systematically increasing upper leg compression and hip joint stiffness independently from one another affects vertical jumping performance. Ten male athletes performed countermovement vertical jumps in 8 concept apparel conditions and 1 control condition (loose fitting shorts). The 8 apparel conditions, 4 that specifically altered the amount of compression exerted on the thigh and 4 that altered the hip joint stiffness by means of elastic thermoplastic polyurethane bands, were tested on 2 separate testing sessions (one testing the compression apparel and the other testing the stiffness apparel). Maximum jump height was measured, while kinematic data of the hip, knee, and ankle joint were recorded with a high-speed camera (480 Hz). Both compression and stiffness apparel can have a positive influence on vertical jumping performance. The increase in jump height for the optimal compression was due to increased hip joint range of motion and a trend of increasing the jump time. Optimal stiffness also increased jump height and had the trend of decreasing the hip joint range of motion and hip joint angular velocity. The exact mechanisms by which apparel interventions alter performance is not clear, but it may be due to alterations to the force-length and force-velocity relationships of muscle. PMID:27003453

  9. Therapeutic modification of arterial stiffness: An update and comprehensive review.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ching-Fen; Liu, Pang-Yen; Wu, Tsung-Jui; Hung, Yuan; Yang, Shih-Ping; Lin, Gen-Min

    2015-11-26

    Arterial stiffness has been recognized as a marker of cardiovascular disease and associated with long-term worse clinical outcomes in several populations. Age, hypertension, smoking, and dyslipidemia, known as traditional vascular risk factors, as well as diabetes, obesity, and systemic inflammation lead to both atherosclerosis and arterial stiffness. Targeting multiple modifiable risk factors has become the main therapeutic strategy to improve arterial stiffness in patients at high cardiovascular risk. Additionally to life style modifications, long-term ?-3 fatty acids (fish oil) supplementation in diet may improve arterial stiffness in the population with hypertension or metabolic syndrome. Pharmacological treatment such as renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system antagonists, metformin, and 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-CoA reductase inhibitors were useful in individuals with hypertension and diabetes. In obese population with obstructive sleep apnea, weight reduction, aerobic exercise, and continuous positive airway pressure treatment may also improve arterial stiffness. In the populations with chronic inflammatory disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, a use of antibodies against tumor necrosis factor-alpha could work effectively. Other therapeutic options such as renal sympathetic nerve denervation for patients with resistant hypertension are investigated in many ongoing clinical trials. Therefore our comprehensive review provides knowledge in detail regarding many aspects of pathogenesis, measurement, and management of arterial stiffness in several populations, which would be helpful for physicians to make clinical decision. PMID:26635922

  10. Therapeutic modification of arterial stiffness: An update and comprehensive review

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Ching-Fen; Liu, Pang-Yen; Wu, Tsung-Jui; Hung, Yuan; Yang, Shih-Ping; Lin, Gen-Min

    2015-01-01

    Arterial stiffness has been recognized as a marker of cardiovascular disease and associated with long-term worse clinical outcomes in several populations. Age, hypertension, smoking, and dyslipidemia, known as traditional vascular risk factors, as well as diabetes, obesity, and systemic inflammation lead to both atherosclerosis and arterial stiffness. Targeting multiple modifiable risk factors has become the main therapeutic strategy to improve arterial stiffness in patients at high cardiovascular risk. Additionally to life style modifications, long-term ω-3 fatty acids (fish oil) supplementation in diet may improve arterial stiffness in the population with hypertension or metabolic syndrome. Pharmacological treatment such as renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system antagonists, metformin, and 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-CoA reductase inhibitors were useful in individuals with hypertension and diabetes. In obese population with obstructive sleep apnea, weight reduction, aerobic exercise, and continuous positive airway pressure treatment may also improve arterial stiffness. In the populations with chronic inflammatory disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, a use of antibodies against tumor necrosis factor-alpha could work effectively. Other therapeutic options such as renal sympathetic nerve denervation for patients with resistant hypertension are investigated in many ongoing clinical trials. Therefore our comprehensive review provides knowledge in detail regarding many aspects of pathogenesis, measurement, and management of arterial stiffness in several populations, which would be helpful for physicians to make clinical decision. PMID:26635922

  11. Visualizing the Structural Evolution of LSM/xYSZ Composite Cathodes for SOFC by in-situ Neutron Diffraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yan; Yang, Ling; Ren, Fei; An, Ke

    2014-06-01

    Thermal stability of composite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells, the mixtures of (La0.8Sr0.2)0.95MnO3-? (LSM) and (Y2O3)x(ZrO2)1-x (xYSZ, x = 3, 6, 8 and 10), is determined using in-situ neutron diffraction. Thanks to the most advanced high flux neutron source, our work highlights the visualization of the phase evolutions in heterogeneous material systems at high temperatures, along with the analysis of the diffusion activities of transition metal ions that reveal the reaction mechanism and kinetics. It is found that the tetragonal-to-cubic phase transition in YSZ at T > 900C leads to a heterogeneous redistribution of Mn ions. The subsequent reaction of LSM and YSZ occurring at T > 1100C is revealed as a three-stage kinetic process, yielding La2Zr2O7, SrZrO3 and MnO. The diffusion activities of Y, Mn and La ions in the heterogeneous systems at elevated temperatures are derived by the structural analysis, and the three-stage reaction of YSZ and LSM is found strongly correlated to ions' behaviors as functions of temperature.

  12. Visualizing the Structural Evolution of LSM/xYSZ Composite Cathodes for SOFC by in-situ Neutron Diffraction

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yan; Yang, Ling; Ren, Fei; An, Ke

    2014-01-01

    Thermal stability of composite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells, the mixtures of (La0.8Sr0.2)0.95MnO3?? (LSM) and (Y2O3)x(ZrO2)1?x (xYSZ, x = 3, 6, 8 and 10), is determined using in-situ neutron diffraction. Thanks to the most advanced high flux neutron source, our work highlights the visualization of the phase evolutions in heterogeneous material systems at high temperatures, along with the analysis of the diffusion activities of transition metal ions that reveal the reaction mechanism and kinetics. It is found that the tetragonal-to-cubic phase transition in YSZ at T > 900C leads to a heterogeneous redistribution of Mn ions. The subsequent reaction of LSM and YSZ occurring at T > 1100C is revealed as a three-stage kinetic process, yielding La2Zr2O7, SrZrO3 and MnO. The diffusion activities of Y, Mn and La ions in the heterogeneous systems at elevated temperatures are derived by the structural analysis, and the three-stage reaction of YSZ and LSM is found strongly correlated to ions' behaviors as functions of temperature. PMID:24899139

  13. Visualizing the structural evolution of LSM/xYSZ composite cathodes for SOFC by in-situ neutron diffraction.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yan; Yang, Ling; Ren, Fei; An, Ke

    2014-01-01

    Thermal stability of composite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells, the mixtures of (La0.8Sr0.2)0.95MnO(3-?) (LSM) and (Y2O3)(x)(ZrO2)(1-x) (xYSZ, x = 3, 6, 8 and 10), is determined using in-situ neutron diffraction. Thanks to the most advanced high flux neutron source, our work highlights the visualization of the phase evolutions in heterogeneous material systems at high temperatures, along with the analysis of the diffusion activities of transition metal ions that reveal the reaction mechanism and kinetics. It is found that the tetragonal-to-cubic phase transition in YSZ at T > 900C leads to a heterogeneous redistribution of Mn ions. The subsequent reaction of LSM and YSZ occurring at T > 1100C is revealed as a three-stage kinetic process, yielding La2Zr2O7, SrZrO3 and MnO. The diffusion activities of Y, Mn and La ions in the heterogeneous systems at elevated temperatures are derived by the structural analysis, and the three-stage reaction of YSZ and LSM is found strongly correlated to ions' behaviors as functions of temperature. PMID:24899139

  14. Visualizing the Structural Evolution of LSM/xYSZ Composite Cathodes for SOFC by in-situ Neutron Diffraction

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, Yan; Yang, Ling; Ren, Fei; An, Ke

    2014-01-01

    Composite cathodes for solid oxide fuel cells, the mixtures of (La0.8Sr0.2)0.95MnO3- (LSM) and (Y2O3)x(ZrO2)1-x (xYSZ, x = 3, 6, 8 and 10), have the thermal stability unraveled at elevated temperatures by using in-situ neutron diffraction. The Rietveld refinement analysis of neutron diffraction visualizes the phase evolutions and the ion activities in the material systems. The phase transition of tetragonal YSZ at T > 900 C leads to a heterogeneous redistribution of Mn ions. The reaction of LSM and YSZ occurring at T > 1100 C was revealed as a three-stage process, yielding La2Zr2O7, SrZrO3 and MnO. The activities of Y, Mn and La ions at elevated temperatures are derived by the structural analysis, and the three-stage reaction of YSZ and LSM was found strongly correlated to ions behaviors.

  15. LV wall segmentation using the variational level set method (LSM) with additional shape constraint for oedema quantification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kadir, K.; Gao, H.; Payne, A.; Soraghan, J.; Berry, C.

    2012-10-01

    In this paper an automatic algorithm for the left ventricle (LV) wall segmentation and oedema quantification from T2-weighted cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) images is presented. The extent of myocardial oedema delineates the ischaemic area-at-risk (AAR) after myocardial infarction (MI). Since AAR can be used to estimate the amount of salvageable myocardial post-MI, oedema imaging has potential clinical utility in the management of acute MI patients. This paper presents a new scheme based on the variational level set method (LSM) with additional shape constraint for the segmentation of T2-weighted CMR image. In our approach, shape information of the myocardial wall is utilized to introduce a shape feature of the myocardial wall into the variational level set formulation. The performance of the method is tested using real CMR images (12 patients) and the results of the automatic system are compared to manual segmentation. The mean perpendicular distances between the automatic and manual LV wall boundaries are in the range of 1-2 mm. Bland-Altman analysis on LV wall area indicates there is no consistent bias as a function of LV wall area, with a mean bias of -121 mm2 between individual investigator one (IV1) and LSM, and -122 mm2 between individual investigator two (IV2) and LSM when compared to two investigators. Furthermore, the oedema quantification demonstrates good correlation when compared to an expert with an average error of 9.3% for 69 slices of short axis CMR image from 12 patients.

  16. The Relationship of Magnetic Stiffness Between Single and Multiple YBCO Superconductors over Permanent Magnet Guideway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Yiyun; Lu, Bingjuan; Wang, Suyu

    2011-09-01

    For YBCO bulk levitating over a permanent magnet guideway (PMG), the magnetic stiffness is connected directly with the pinning properties of the measured sample. An experimental setup has been built to investigate the vertical and lateral magnetic stiffness of five high-temperature superconducting (HTS) bulk arrays over a PMG by two methods: the additive method, i.e., calculating the summation of the measured magnetic stiffness values of each HTS bulk in the array; the direct method, i.e., measuring directly the magnetic stiffness of the HTS bulk array. From the experimental results, it is found that the resultant magnetic stiffness of the HTS bulk array composing of multiple YBCO bulk is related with the magnetic stiffness of each individual single bulk, but the additive method does not predict the magnetic stiffness of the array very well because of the interaction between adjacent HTS bulk. The resultant magnetic stiffness of the HTS bulk array is less than the summation magnetic stiffness of each single HTS bulk. One numerical method is used to calculate the magnetic stiffness for comparing with experimental results. The results may be helpful to the design and optimization of the superconducting magnetic levitation system.

  17. Spin stiffness of vector spin glasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beyer, Frank; Weigel, Martin

    2011-09-01

    We study domain-wall excitations for O(m) vector spin glasses in the limit m→∞, where the energy landscape is simplified considerably compared to XY or Heisenberg models due to the complete disappearance of metastability. Using numerical ground-state calculations and appropriate pairs of complementary boundary conditions, domain-wall defects are inserted into the systems and their excitation energies are measured. This allows us to determine the stiffness exponents for lattices of a range of spatial dimensions d=2,…,7. Compiling these results, we can finally determine the lower critical dimension of the model. The outcome is compared to estimates resulting from field-theoretic calculations.

  18. Accurate spring constant calibration for very stiff atomic force microscopy cantilevers

    SciTech Connect

    Grutzik, Scott J.; Zehnder, Alan T.; Gates, Richard S.; Gerbig, Yvonne B.; Smith, Douglas T.; Cook, Robert F.

    2013-11-15

    There are many atomic force microscopy (AFM) applications that rely on quantifying the force between the AFM cantilever tip and the sample. The AFM does not explicitly measure force, however, so in such cases knowledge of the cantilever stiffness is required. In most cases, the forces of interest are very small, thus compliant cantilevers are used. A number of methods have been developed that are well suited to measuring low stiffness values. However, in some cases a cantilever with much greater stiffness is required. Thus, a direct, traceable method for calibrating very stiff (approximately 200 N/m) cantilevers is presented here. The method uses an instrumented and calibrated nanoindenter to determine the stiffness of a reference cantilever. This reference cantilever is then used to measure the stiffness of a number of AFM test cantilevers. This method is shown to have much smaller uncertainty than previously proposed methods. An example application to fracture testing of nanoscale silicon beam specimens is included.

  19. Accurate spring constant calibration for very stiff atomic force microscopy cantilevers.

    PubMed

    Grutzik, Scott J; Gates, Richard S; Gerbig, Yvonne B; Smith, Douglas T; Cook, Robert F; Zehnder, Alan T

    2013-11-01

    There are many atomic force microscopy (AFM) applications that rely on quantifying the force between the AFM cantilever tip and the sample. The AFM does not explicitly measure force, however, so in such cases knowledge of the cantilever stiffness is required. In most cases, the forces of interest are very small, thus compliant cantilevers are used. A number of methods have been developed that are well suited to measuring low stiffness values. However, in some cases a cantilever with much greater stiffness is required. Thus, a direct, traceable method for calibrating very stiff (approximately 200 N/m) cantilevers is presented here. The method uses an instrumented and calibrated nanoindenter to determine the stiffness of a reference cantilever. This reference cantilever is then used to measure the stiffness of a number of AFM test cantilevers. This method is shown to have much smaller uncertainty than previously proposed methods. An example application to fracture testing of nanoscale silicon beam specimens is included. PMID:24289403

  20. Hydration Status Is Associated with Aortic Stiffness, but Not with Peripheral Arterial Stiffness, in Chronically Hemodialysed Patients.

    PubMed

    Bia, Daniel; Galli, Cintia; Valtuille, Rodolfo; Zócalo, Yanina; Wray, Sandra A; Armentano, Ricardo L; Cabrera Fischer, Edmundo I

    2015-01-01

    Background. Adequate fluid management could be essential to minimize high arterial stiffness observed in chronically hemodialyzed patients (CHP). Aim. To determine the association between body fluid status and central and peripheral arterial stiffness levels. Methods. Arterial stiffness was assessed in 65 CHP by measuring the pulse wave velocity (PWV) in a central arterial pathway (carotid-femoral) and in a peripheral pathway (carotid-brachial). A blood pressure-independent regional arterial stiffness index was calculated using PWV. Volume status was assessed by whole-body multiple-frequency bioimpedance. Patients were first observed as an entire group and then divided into three different fluid status-related groups: normal, overhydration, and dehydration groups. Results. Only carotid-femoral stiffness was positively associated (P < 0.05) with the hydration status evaluated through extracellular/intracellular fluid, extracellular/Total Body Fluid, and absolute and relative overhydration. Conclusion. Volume status and overload are associated with central, but not peripheral, arterial stiffness levels with independence of the blood pressure level, in CHP. PMID:26167301

  1. Hydration Status Is Associated with Aortic Stiffness, but Not with Peripheral Arterial Stiffness, in Chronically Hemodialysed Patients

    PubMed Central

    Bia, Daniel; Galli, Cintia; Valtuille, Rodolfo; Zócalo, Yanina; Wray, Sandra A.; Armentano, Ricardo L.; Cabrera Fischer, Edmundo I.

    2015-01-01

    Background. Adequate fluid management could be essential to minimize high arterial stiffness observed in chronically hemodialyzed patients (CHP). Aim. To determine the association between body fluid status and central and peripheral arterial stiffness levels. Methods. Arterial stiffness was assessed in 65 CHP by measuring the pulse wave velocity (PWV) in a central arterial pathway (carotid-femoral) and in a peripheral pathway (carotid-brachial). A blood pressure-independent regional arterial stiffness index was calculated using PWV. Volume status was assessed by whole-body multiple-frequency bioimpedance. Patients were first observed as an entire group and then divided into three different fluid status-related groups: normal, overhydration, and dehydration groups. Results. Only carotid-femoral stiffness was positively associated (P < 0.05) with the hydration status evaluated through extracellular/intracellular fluid, extracellular/Total Body Fluid, and absolute and relative overhydration. Conclusion. Volume status and overload are associated with central, but not peripheral, arterial stiffness levels with independence of the blood pressure level, in CHP. PMID:26167301

  2. Quantification of regional aortic stiffness using MR elastography: A phantom and ex-vivo porcine aorta study.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Nan; Chen, Jun; Yin, Meng; Glaser, Kevin J; Xu, Lei; Ehman, Richard L

    2016-02-01

    MR Elastography (MRE) is a noninvasive technique for measuring tissue stiffness that has been used to assess the average stiffness of the abdominal aorta. The utility of aortic MRE would be improved if it could provide information about local variations in aortic stiffness. We hypothesize that regional variations in aortic stiffness can also be measured with MRE and the purpose of this work was to demonstrate that MRE can measure regional stiffness variations in a vascular phantom and in ex vivo porcine aortas. A vascular phantom was fabricated, containing two silicone tubes embedded in gel. A segment of one of the tubes was modified to increase its stiffness. MRE was performed on the phantom with a continuous flow of water through the tubes. The stiffness distribution along the modified tube was measured and compared to the reference tube. MRE was also performed in porcine aortas embedded in gel with segments treated with saline or formalin for 4days. The stiffness difference between saline- and formalin-treated aortic segments was measured by MRE and mechanical tests. A positive correlation was found between the regional stiffnesses measured by MRE and mechanical tests. The results indicate that MRE can be used to evaluate the local stiffness distribution in silicone tubes and ex vivo porcine aortas. It may therefore be possible to apply MRE to measure regional stiffness variations of the aorta in vivo. PMID:26597836

  3. Elastic metamaterial beam with remotely tunable stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qian, Wei; Yu, Zhengyue; Wang, Xiaole; Lai, Yun; Yellen, Benjamin B.

    2016-02-01

    We demonstrate a dynamically tunable elastic metamaterial, which employs remote magnetic force to adjust its vibration absorption properties. The 1D metamaterial is constructed from a flat aluminum beam milled with a linear array of cylindrical holes. The beam is backed by a thin elastic membrane, on which thin disk-shaped permanent magnets are mounted. When excited by a shaker, the beam motion is tracked by a Laser Doppler Vibrometer, which conducts point by point scanning of the vibrating element. Elastic waves are unable to propagate through the beam when the driving frequency excites the first elastic bending mode in the unit cell. At these frequencies, the effective mass density of the unit cell becomes negative, which induces an exponentially decaying evanescent wave. Due to the non-linear elastic properties of the membrane, the effective stiffness of the unit cell can be tuned with an external magnetic force from nearby solenoids. Measurements of the linear and cubic static stiffness terms of the membrane are in excellent agreement with experimental measurements of the bandgap shift as a function of the applied force. In this implementation, bandgap shifts by as much as 40% can be achieved with ˜30 mN of applied magnetic force. This structure has potential for extension in 2D and 3D, providing a general approach for building dynamically tunable elastic metamaterials for applications in lensing and guiding elastic waves.

  4. Stiffness threshold of randomly distributed carbon nanotube networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yuli; Pan, Fei; Guo, Zaoyang; Liu, Bin; Zhang, Jianyu

    2015-11-01

    For carbon nanotube (CNT) networks, with increasing network density, there may be sudden changes in the properties, such as the sudden change in electrical conductivity at the electrical percolation threshold. In this paper, the change in stiffness of the CNT networks is studied and especially the existence of stiffness threshold is revealed. Two critical network densities are found to divide the stiffness behavior into three stages: zero stiffness, bending dominated and stretching dominated stages. The first critical network density is a criterion to judge whether or not the network is capable of carrying load, defined as the stiffness threshold. The second critical network density is a criterion to measure whether or not most of the CNTs in network are utilized effectively to carry load, defined as bending-stretching transitional threshold. Based on the geometric probability analysis, a theoretical methodology is set up to predict the two thresholds and explain their underlying mechanisms. The stiffness threshold is revealed to be determined by the statical determinacy of CNTs in the network, and can be estimated quantitatively by the stabilization fraction of network, a newly proposed parameter in this paper. The other threshold, bending-stretching transitional threshold, which signs the conversion of dominant deformation mode, is verified to be well evaluated by the proposed defect fraction of network. According to the theoretical analysis as well as the numerical simulation, the average intersection number on each CNT is revealed as the only dominant factor for the electrical percolation and the stiffness thresholds, it is approximately 3.7 for electrical percolation threshold, and 5.2 for the stiffness threshold of 2D networks. For 3D networks, they are 1.4 and 4.4. And it also affects the bending-stretching transitional threshold, together with the CNT aspect ratio. The average intersection number divided by the fourth root of CNT aspect ratio is found to be an invariant at the bending-stretching transitional threshold, which is 6.7 and 6.3 for 2D and 3D networks, respectively. Based on this study, a simple piecewise expression is summarized to describe the relative stiffness of CNT networks, in which the relative stiffness of networks depends on the relative network density as well as the CNT aspect ratio. This formula provides a solid theoretical foundation for the design optimization and property prediction of CNT networks.

  5. Evaluating pulp stiffness from fibre bundles by ultrasound

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karppinen, Timo; Montonen, Risto; Mttnen, Marjo; Ekman, Axel; Myllys, Markko; Timonen, Jussi; Hggstrm, Edward

    2012-06-01

    A non-destructive ultrasonic tester was developed to measure the stiffness of pulp bundles. The mechanical properties of pulp are important when estimating the behaviour of paper under stress. Currently available pulp tests are tedious and alter the fibres structurally and mechanically. The developed tester employs (933 15) kHz tweezer-like ultrasonic transducers and time-of-flight measurement through (9.0 2.5) mm long and (0.8 0.1) mm thick fibre bundles kept at (19.1 0.4) C and (62 1)% RH. We determined the stiffness of soft wood pulps produced by three kraft pulping modifications: standard kraft pulp, (5.2 0.4) GPa, prehydrolysis kraft pulp, (4.3 0.4) GPa, and alkali extracted prehydrolysis kraft pulp, (3.3 0.4) GPa. Prehydrolysis and alkali extraction processes mainly lowered the hemicellulose content of the pulps, which essentially decreased the fibre-wall stiffness hence impairing the stiffness of the fibre networks. Our results indicate that the method allows ranking of pulps according to their stiffness determined from bundle-like samples taken at an early phase of the papermaking process.

  6. Effect of surface stress on the stiffness of cantilever plates.

    PubMed

    Lachut, Michael J; Sader, John E

    2007-11-16

    Measurements over the past 30 years have indicated that surface stress can significantly affect the stiffness of microcantilever plates. Several one-dimensional models based on beam theory have been proposed to explain this phenomenon, but are found to be in violation of Newton's third law, in spite of their good agreement with measurements. In this Letter, we review this work and rigorously examine the effect of surface stress on the stiffness of cantilever plates using a full three-dimensional model. This study establishes the relationship between surface stress and cantilever stiffness, and in so doing elucidates its scaling behavior with cantilever dimensions. The use of short nanoscale cantilevers thus presents the most promising avenue for future investigations. PMID:18233163

  7. Estimation of Stiffness Parameter on the Common Carotid Artery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koya, Yoshiharu; Mizoshiri, Isao; Matsui, Kiyoaki; Nakamura, Takashi

    The arteriosclerosis is on the increase with an aging or change of our living environment. For that reason, diagnosis of the common carotid artery using echocardiogram is doing to take precautions carebropathy. Up to the present, several methods to measure stiffness parameter of the carotid artery have been proposed. However, they have analyzed at the only one point of common carotid artery. In this paper, we propose the method of analysis extended over a wide area of common carotid artery. In order to measure stiffness parameter of common carotid artery from echocardiogram, it is required to detect two border curves which are boundaries between vessel wall and blood. The method is composed of two steps. The first step is the detection of border curves, and the second step is the calculation of stiffness parameter using diameter of common carotid artery. Experimental results show the validity of the proposed method.

  8. Multi-fingered haptic palpation utilizing granular jamming stiffness feedback actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Min; Ranzani, Tommaso; Sareh, Sina; Seneviratne, Lakmal D.; Dasgupta, Prokar; Wurdemann, Helge A.; Althoefer, Kaspar

    2014-09-01

    This paper describes a multi-fingered haptic palpation method using stiffness feedback actuators for simulating tissue palpation procedures in traditional and in robot-assisted minimally invasive surgery. Soft tissue stiffness is simulated by changing the stiffness property of the actuator during palpation. For the first time, granular jamming and pneumatic air actuation are combined to realize stiffness modulation. The stiffness feedback actuator is validated by stiffness measurements in indentation tests and through stiffness discrimination based on a user study. According to the indentation test results, the introduction of a pneumatic chamber to granular jamming can amplify the stiffness variation range and reduce hysteresis of the actuator. The advantage of multi-fingered palpation using the proposed actuators is proven by the comparison of the results of the stiffness discrimination performance using two-fingered (sensitivity: 82.2%, specificity: 88.9%, positive predicative value: 80.0%, accuracy: 85.4%, time: 4.84 s) and single-fingered (sensitivity: 76.4%, specificity: 85.7%, positive predicative value: 75.3%, accuracy: 81.8%, time: 7.48 s) stiffness feedback.

  9. Arterial Stiffness and ?-Amyloid Progression in Nondemented Elderly Adults

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Timothy M.; Kuller, Lewis H.; Barinas-Mitchell, Emma J. M.; McDade, Eric M.; Klunk, William E.; Cohen, Ann D.; Mathis, Chester A.; DeKosky, Steven T.; Price, Julie C.; Lopez, Oscar L.

    2014-01-01

    IMPORTANCE Recent studies show that cerebral ?-amyloid (A?) deposition is associated with blood pressure and measures of arterial stiffness in nondemented individuals. OBJECTIVE To examine the association between measures of arterial stiffness and change in A? deposition over time. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS Deposition of A? was determined in a longitudinal observational study of aging by positron emission tomography using the Pittsburgh compound B twice 2 years apart in 81 nondemented individuals 83 years and older. Arterial stiffness was measured with a noninvasive and automated waveform analyzer at the time closest to the second positron emission tomography scan. All measures were performed under standardized conditions. Pulse wave velocity (PWV) was measured in the central (carotid-femoral and heart-femoral PWV), peripheral (femoral-ankle PWV), and mixed (brachial-ankle PWV) vascular beds. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The change in A? deposition over 2 years was calculated from the 81 individuals with repeat A?-positron emission tomography. RESULTS The proportion of A?-positive individuals increased from 48% at baseline to 75% at follow-up. Brachial-ankle PWV was significantly higher among A?-positive participants at baseline and follow-up. Femoral-ankle PWV was only higher among A?-positive participants at follow-up. Measures of central stiffness and blood pressure were not associated with A? status at baseline or follow-up, but central stiffness was associated with a change in A? deposition over time. Each standard deviation increase in central stiffness (carotid-femoral PWV, P = .001; heart-femoral PWV, P = .004) was linked with increases in A? deposition over 2 years. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE This study showed that A? deposition increases with age in nondemented individuals and that arterial stiffness is strongly associated with the progressive deposition of A? in the brain, especially in this age group. The association between A? deposition changes over time and generalized arterial stiffness indicated a relationship between the severity of subclinical vascular disease and progressive cerebral A? deposition. PMID:24687165

  10. Diagnosis of GLDAS LSM based aridity index and dryland identification for socioeconomic aspect of water resources management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghazanfari, S.; Pande, S.; Hashemy, M.; Naseri M., M.

    2012-04-01

    Water resources scarcity plays an important role in socioeconomic aspect of livelihood pattern in dryland areas. Hydrological perspective of aridity is required for social and economic coping Strategies. Identification of dryland areas is crucial to guide policy aimed at intervening in water stressed areas and addressing its perennial livelihood or food insecurity. Yet, prevailing aridity indices are beset with methodological limitations that restrict their use in delineating drylands and, might be insuffient for decision making frameworks. Palmer's Drought Severity index (PDSI) reports relative soil moisture deviations from long term means, which does not allow cross comparisons, while UNEP's aridity index, the ratio of annual evaporative demand to rainfall supply, ignores site specific soil and vegetation characteristics that are needed for appropriate water balance assessment. We propose to refine UNEP's aridity index by accounting for site specific soil and vegetation to partition precipitation into competing demands of evaporation and runoff. We create three aridity indices at a 1 x 1 degree spatial resolution based on 3 decades of soil moisture time series from three GLDAS Land Surface Models (LSM's): VIC, MOSAIC and NOAH. We compare each LSM model aridity map with the UNEP aridity map which was created based on LSM data forcing. Our approach is to extract the first Eigen function from Empirical Orthogonal Function (EOF) analysis that represents the dominant spatial template of soil moisture conditions of the three LSM's. Frequency of non-exceedence of this dominant soil moisture mode for a location by all other locations is used as our proposed aridity index. The EOF analysis reveals that the first Eigen function explains, respectively, 33%, 43% and 47% of the VIC, NOAH and MOSAIC models. The temporal coefficients associated with the first OF (Orthogonal Function) for all three LSMS clearly show seasonality with a discrete jump in trend around the year 1999 for NOAH and MOSAIC. The VIC aridity index displays a pattern most closely resembling that of UNEP though all LSM based indices isolate dominant dryland areas, correctly. The UNEP classification identifies some parts of south central Africa, southeast United States and eastern India as drier than all LSMs. NOAH and MOSAIC categorize parts of SouthWestern Africa drier than the other two classifications, while all LSMs classify parts of central India wetter than the UNEP classification. We find long term average NDVI values showing vegetation cover in areas that UNEP classifies drier than other three LSMs. Finally, based on unsupervised clustering of global land surface based on long term mean temperature and precipitation, soil texture and land slope, areas classified as dry by UNEP but wet by LSMs have relatively wet characteristics while areas classified as wet by UNEP but dry by LSMs have dry characteristics. We conclude that LSM based aridity index identifies dryland areas other than UNEP aridity index since the former also incorporates the role of vegetation and soil in partitioning of precipitation into evaporation, runoff and infiltration.

  11. A new sampling method for spleen stiffness measurement based on quantitative acoustic radiation force impulse elastography for noninvasive assessment of esophageal varices in newly diagnosed HCV-related cirrhosis.

    PubMed

    Rizzo, Leonardo; Attanasio, Massimo; Pinzone, Marilia Rita; Berretta, Massimiliano; Malaguarnera, Michele; Morra, Aldo; L'Abbate, Luca; Balestreri, Luca; Nunnari, Giuseppe; Cacopardo, Bruno

    2014-01-01

    In our study, we evaluated the feasibility of a new sampling method for splenic stiffness (SS) measurement by Quantitative Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Elastography (Virtual Touch Tissue Quantification (VTTQ)).We measured SS in 54 patients with HCV-related cirrhosis of whom 28 with esophageal varices (EV), 27 with Chronic Hepatitis C (CHC) F1-F3, and 63 healthy controls. VTTQ-SS was significantly higher among cirrhotic patients with EV (3.37?m/s) in comparison with controls (2.19?m/s, P<0.001), CHC patients (2.37?m/s, P<0.001), and cirrhotic patients without EV (2.7?m/s, P<0.001). Moreover, VTTQ-SS was significantly higher among cirrhotic patients without EV in comparison with both controls (P<0.001) and CHC patients (P<0.01). The optimal VTTQ-SS cut-off value for predicting EV was 3.1?m/s (AUROC=0.96, sensitivity 96.4%, specificity 88.5%, positive predictive value 90%, negative predictive value 96%, positive likelihood ratio 8.36, and negative likelihood ratio 0.04). In conclusion, VTTQ-SS is a promising noninvasive and reliable diagnostic tool to screen cirrhotic patients for EV and reduce the need for upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. By using our cut-off value of 3.1?m/s, we would avoid endoscopy in around 45% of cirrhotic subjects, with significant time and cost savings. PMID:24729970

  12. A New Sampling Method for Spleen Stiffness Measurement Based on Quantitative Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Elastography for Noninvasive Assessment of Esophageal Varices in Newly Diagnosed HCV-Related Cirrhosis

    PubMed Central

    Rizzo, Leonardo; Attanasio, Massimo; Berretta, Massimiliano; Malaguarnera, Michele; Morra, Aldo; L'Abbate, Luca; Balestreri, Luca; Nunnari, Giuseppe; Cacopardo, Bruno

    2014-01-01

    In our study, we evaluated the feasibility of a new sampling method for splenic stiffness (SS) measurement by Quantitative Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Elastography (Virtual Touch Tissue Quantification (VTTQ)).We measured SS in 54 patients with HCV-related cirrhosis of whom 28 with esophageal varices (EV), 27 with Chronic Hepatitis C (CHC) F1F3, and 63 healthy controls. VTTQ-SS was significantly higher among cirrhotic patients with EV (3.37?m/s) in comparison with controls (2.19?m/s, P < 0.001), CHC patients (2.37?m/s, P < 0.001), and cirrhotic patients without EV (2.7?m/s, P < 0.001). Moreover, VTTQ-SS was significantly higher among cirrhotic patients without EV in comparison with both controls (P < 0.001) and CHC patients (P < 0.01). The optimal VTTQ-SS cut-off value for predicting EV was 3.1?m/s (AUROC = 0.96, sensitivity 96.4%, specificity 88.5%, positive predictive value 90%, negative predictive value 96%, positive likelihood ratio 8.36, and negative likelihood ratio 0.04). In conclusion, VTTQ-SS is a promising noninvasive and reliable diagnostic tool to screen cirrhotic patients for EV and reduce the need for upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. By using our cut-off value of 3.1?m/s, we would avoid endoscopy in around 45% of cirrhotic subjects, with significant time and cost savings. PMID:24729970

  13. Dynamic phototuning of 3D hydrogel stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Stowers, Ryan S.; Allen, Shane C.; Suggs, Laura J.

    2015-01-01

    Hydrogels are widely used as in vitro culture models to mimic 3D cellular microenvironments. The stiffness of the extracellular matrix is known to influence cell phenotype, inspiring work toward unraveling the role of stiffness on cell behavior using hydrogels. However, in many biological processes such as embryonic development, wound healing, and tumorigenesis, the microenvironment is highly dynamic, leading to changes in matrix stiffness over a broad range of timescales. To recapitulate dynamic microenvironments, a hydrogel with temporally tunable stiffness is needed. Here, we present a system in which alginate gel stiffness can be temporally modulated by light-triggered release of calcium or a chelator from liposomes. Others have shown softening via photodegradation or stiffening via secondary cross-linking; however, our system is capable of both dynamic stiffening and softening. Dynamic modulation of stiffness can be induced at least 14 d after gelation and can be spatially controlled to produce gradients and patterns. We use this system to investigate the regulation of fibroblast morphology by stiffness in both nondegradable gels and gels with degradable elements. Interestingly, stiffening inhibits fibroblast spreading through either mesenchymal or amoeboid migration modes. We demonstrate this technology can be translated in vivo by using deeply penetrating near-infrared light for transdermal stiffness modulation, enabling external control of gel stiffness. Temporal modulation of hydrogel stiffness is a powerful tool that will enable investigation of the role that dynamic microenvironments play in biological processes both in vitro and in well-controlled in vivo experiments. PMID:25646417

  14. FRC formation experiments with tearing reconnection on the FRX-C/LSM device

    SciTech Connect

    Rej, D.J.; Hugrass, W.N.; Barnes, G.A.; Siemon, R.E.

    1986-09-01

    Field-reversed configuration (FRC) formation studies performed on the FRX-C/LSM device during February and March 1986 are documented. Experiments were restricted to the tearing-reconnection mode of formation at 10 mtorr deuterium fill pressure. Magnetic tearing was driven with 0.3-m-long, 0.66-m-id passive end mirrors mounted on a theta-pinch coil with a 1.4-m-long, 0.76-m-id central section. Typical plasma densities and temperatures were anti n approx. = 2 x 10/sup 15/ cm/sup -3/ and 200 less than or equal to T/sub e/ + T/sub i/ less than or equal to 450 eV, respectively. Two parameters were varied: the magnitude of the reversed-bias B-field, 0.5 less than or equal to B/sub b/ less than or equal to 1.4 kG, and the time interval ..delta.. tau/sub PI/ (set at either 5, 12, or 30 ..mu..s) between preionization and the initiation of the main discharge. As B/sub b/ was increased the axial shock and radial swelling after reconnection became stronger with transient plasma elongations decreasing from 3 to 1. The inferred trapped poloidal flux PHI/sub p/ increased with B/sub b/, while at a given B/sub b/, the maximum PHI/sub p/ was obtained at the shortest ..delta.. tau/sub PI/. The normalized separatrix radius x/sub s/, at the start of the equilibrium phase varied from 0.35 to 0.65 and PHI/sub p/ ranged between 2 and 20 mWb. The upper value of PHI/sub p/ is about 4-times larger than that achieved in FRX-C with a 0.5-m-id coil; however, the longest flux confinement times, tau/sub PHI/ less than or equal to 100..mu..s, were obtained only at small PHI/sub p/.

  15. Impact of Irrigation Methods on LSM Spinup and Initialization of WRF Forecasts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawston, P.; Santanello, J. A.; Zaitchik, B. F.; Beaudoing, H.

    2013-12-01

    In the United States, irrigation represents the largest consumption of fresh water and accounts for approximately one-third of all water usage. Irrigation has been shown to modify local hydrology and regional climate through a repartitioning of water at the surface and through the atmosphere, and can in some cases drastically change the terrestrial energy budget in agricultural areas during the growing season. Vegetation cover and soil moisture primarily control water and energy fluxes from the surface so accurate representation of the land surface characteristics is key to determining and predicting atmospheric conditions. This study utilizes NASA's Land Information System (LIS) and the NASA Unified Weather Research and Forecasting (NU-WRF) model to investigate changes in land-atmosphere interactions resulting from drip, flood, and sprinkler irrigation methods. The study area encompasses a 500 km x 600 km region of the Central Great Plains including portions of Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, and Missouri. This area provides a steep irrigation gradient, as much of the western region is heavily irrigated while minimal irrigation occurs in the eastern section. Five-year irrigated LIS spinups were used to initialize two-day, 1-km WRF forecasts. Two forecast periods were chosen, one in a drier than normal year (2006) and one in a wetter than normal year (2008) to evaluate the sensitivity of the irrigation approaches and impacts to the background climate conditions. The offline and coupled simulation results show that both LIS spinups and NU-WRF forecasts are sensitive to irrigation and irrigation methods, as exhibited by significant changes to temperature, soil moisture, boundary layer height, and the partitioning of latent and sensible heat fluxes. Dry year impacts are greater than those in the wet year suggesting that the magnitude of these changes is dependent on the existing precipitation regime. Sprinkler and flood irrigation schemes impact the NU-WRF forecast the most, while drip irrigation has a comparatively small effect. Evaluation of the irrigation schemes using observations of soil moisture, fluxes, and meteorological state variables shows that a realistic characterization of the land surface in terms of land cover classification, soil type, and soil moisture anomalies via a LSM spinup are critical to producing a proper simulation of irrigation in land surface and coupled models.

  16. Dynamically tuned magnetostrictive spring with electrically controlled stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scheidler, Justin J.; Asnani, Vivake M.; Dapino, Marcelo J.

    2016-03-01

    This paper presents the design and testing of an electrically controllable magnetostrictive spring that has a dynamically tunable stiffness (i.e., a magnetostrictive Varispring). The device enables in situ stiffness tuning or stiffness switching for vibration control applications. Using a nonlinear electromechanical transducer model and an analytical solution of linear, mechanically induced magnetic diffusion, Terfenol-D is shown to have a faster rise time to stepped voltage inputs and a significantly higher magnetic diffusion cut-off frequency relative to Galfenol. A Varispring is manufactured using a laminated Terfenol-D rod. Further rise time reductions are achieved by minimizing the rod’s diameter and winding the electromagnet with larger wire. Dynamic tuning of the Varispring’s stiffness is investigated by measuring the Terfenol-D rod’s strain response to dynamic, compressive, axial forces in the presence of sinusoidal or square wave control currents. The Varispring’s rise time is \\lt 1 ms for 1 A current switches. Continuous modulus changes up to 21.9 GPa and 500 Hz and square wave modulus changes (dynamic {{Δ }}E effect) up to 12.3 GPa and 100 Hz are observed. Stiffness tunability and tuning bandwidth can be considerably increased by operating about a more optimal bias stress and improving the control of the electrical input.

  17. Influence of passive stiffness of hamstrings on postural stability.

    PubMed

    Kuszewski, Micha?; Gnat, Rafa?; Sobota, Grzegorz; My?liwiec, Andrzej

    2015-03-29

    The aim of the study was to explore whether passive stiffness of the hamstrings influences the strategy of maintaining postural stability. A sample of 50 subjects was selected; the final analyses were based on data of 41 individuals (33 men, 8 women) aged 21 to 29 (mean = 23.3, SD = 1.1) years. A quasi- experimental ex post facto design with repeated measures was used. Categories of independent variables were obtained directly prior to the measurement of the dependent variables. In stage one of the study, passive knee extension was measured in the supine position to assess hamstring stiffness. In stage two, the magnitude of postural sway in antero-posterior direction was measured, while varying the body position on a stabilometric platform, both with and without visual control. The margin of safety was used as a measure of postural control. The magnitude of the margin of safety increased significantly between the open-eye and closed-eye trials. However, although we registered a visible tendency for a larger increase of the margin of safety associated with lower levels of passive hamstrings stiffness, no significant differences were found. Therefore, this study demonstrated that hamstring stiffness did not influence the strategy used to maintain postural stability. PMID:25964809

  18. Influence of Passive Stiffness of Hamstrings on Postural Stability

    PubMed Central

    Kuszewski, Michał; Gnat, Rafał; Sobota, Grzegorz; Myśliwiec, Andrzej

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the study was to explore whether passive stiffness of the hamstrings influences the strategy of maintaining postural stability. A sample of 50 subjects was selected; the final analyses were based on data of 41 individuals (33 men, 8 women) aged 21 to 29 (mean = 23.3, SD = 1.1) years. A quasi- experimental ex post facto design with repeated measures was used. Categories of independent variables were obtained directly prior to the measurement of the dependent variables. In stage one of the study, passive knee extension was measured in the supine position to assess hamstring stiffness. In stage two, the magnitude of postural sway in antero-posterior direction was measured, while varying the body position on a stabilometric platform, both with and without visual control. The margin of safety was used as a measure of postural control. The magnitude of the margin of safety increased significantly between the open-eye and closed-eye trials. However, although we registered a visible tendency for a larger increase of the margin of safety associated with lower levels of passive hamstrings stiffness, no significant differences were found. Therefore, this study demonstrated that hamstring stiffness did not influence the strategy used to maintain postural stability. PMID:25964809

  19. Critical appraisal of the differential effects of antihypertensive agents on arterial stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Kum, Francesca; Karalliedde, Janaka

    2010-01-01

    Increased central arterial stiffness, involving accelerated vascular ageing of the aorta, is a powerful and independent risk factor for early mortality and provides prognostic information above and beyond traditional risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). Central arterial stiffness is an important determinant of pulse pressure; therefore, any pathological increase may result in left ventricular hypertrophy and impaired coronary perfusion. Central artery stiffness can be assessed noninvasively by measurement of aortic pulse wave velocity, which is the gold standard for measurement of arterial stiffness. Earlier, it was believed that changes in arterial stiffness, which are primarily influenced by long-term pressure-dependent structural changes, may be slowed but not reversed by pharmacotherapy. Recent studies with drugs that inhibit the reninangiotensinaldosterone system, advanced glycation end products crosslink breakers, and endothelin antagonists suggest that blood pressure (BP)-independent reduction and reversal of arterial stiffness are feasible. We review the recent literature on the differential effect of antihypertensive agents either as monotherapy or combination therapy on arterial stiffness. Arterial stiffness is an emerging therapeutic target for CVD risk reduction; however, further clinical trials are required to confirm whether BP-independent changes in arterial stiffness directly translate to a reduction in CVD events. PMID:21949622

  20. Effective stiffness of qPlus sensor and quartz tuning fork.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jongwoo; Won, Donghyun; Sung, Baekman; An, Sangmin; Jhe, Wonho

    2014-06-01

    Quartz tuning forks (QTFs) have been extensively employed in scanning probe microscopy. For quantitative measurement of the interaction in nanoscale using QTF as a force sensor, we first measured the effective stiffness of qPlus sensors as well as QTFs and then compared the results with the cantilever beam theory that has been widely used to estimate the stiffness. Comparing with the stiffness and the resonance frequency in our measurement, we found that those calculated based on the beam theory are considerably overestimated. For consistent analysis of experimental and theoretical results, we present the formula to calculate the stiffness of qPlus sensor or QTF, based on the resonance frequency. We also demonstrated that the effective stiffness of QTF is twice that of qPlus sensor, which agrees with the recently suggested model. Our study demonstrates the use of QTF for quantitative measurement of interaction force at the nanoscale in scanning probe microscopy. PMID:24727200

  1. Task Dependency of Grip StiffnessA Study of Human Grip Force and Grip Stiffness Dependency during Two Different Tasks with Same Grip Forces

    PubMed Central

    Hppner, Hannes; McIntyre, Joseph; van der Smagt, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    It is widely known that the pinch-grip forces of the human hand are linearly related to the weight of the grasped object. Less is known about the relationship between grip force and grip stiffness. We set out to determine variations to these dependencies in different tasks with and without visual feedback. In two different settings, subjects were asked to (a) grasp and hold a stiffness-measuring manipulandum with a predefined grip force, differing from experiment to experiment, or (b) grasp and hold this manipulandum of which we varied the weight between trials in a more natural task. Both situations led to grip forces in comparable ranges. As the measured grip stiffness is the result of muscle and tendon properties, and since muscle/tendon stiffness increases more-or-less linearly as a function of muscle force, we found, as might be predicted, a linear relationship between grip force and grip stiffness. However, the measured stiffness ranges and the increase of stiffness with grip force varied significantly between the two tasks. Furthermore, we found a strong correlation between regression slope and mean stiffness for the force task which we ascribe to a force stiffness curve going through the origin. Based on a biomechanical model, we attributed the difference between both tasks to changes in wrist configuration, rather than to changes in cocontraction. In a new set of experiments where we prevent the wrist from moving by fixing it and resting it on a pedestal, we found subjects exhibiting similar stiffness/force characteristics in both tasks. PMID:24324643

  2. Stiffness and damping of elastomeric O-ring bearing mounts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smalley, A. J.

    1977-01-01

    A test rig to measure the dynamic stiffness and damping of elastomer O rings was described. Test results for stiffness and loss coefficient in the frequency range from 50 Hz to 1000 Hz are presented. Results are given for three different materials, for five temperatures, for three amplitudes, for five values of squeeze for three values of stretch for three values of cross-section diameter and for three values of groove width. All test data points were plotted. In addition, trend summary plots were presented which compare the effect of material, temperature, amplitude, squeeze, stretch, cross-section diameter, and groove width. O ring deflections under a static load for different material were presented; and effective static stiffness values were compared with dynamic values.

  3. Modifiable Risk Factors for Increased Arterial Stiffness in Outpatient Nephrology

    PubMed Central

    Elewa, Usama; Fernandez-Fernandez, Beatriz; Alegre, Raquel; Sanchez-Nio, Maria D.; Mahillo-Fernndez, Ignacio; Perez-Gomez, Maria Vanessa; El-Fishawy, Hussein; Belal, Dawlat; Ortiz, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Arterial stiffness, as measured by pulse wave velocity (PWV), is an independent predictor of cardiovascular events and mortality. Arterial stiffness increases with age. However, modifiable risk factors such as smoking, BP and salt intake also impact on PWV. The finding of modifiable risk factors may lead to the identification of treatable factors, and, thus, is of interest to practicing nephrologist. We have now studied the prevalence and correlates of arterial stiffness, assessed by PWV, in 191 patients from nephrology outpatient clinics in order to identify modifiable risk factors for arterial stiffness that may in the future guide therapeutic decision-making. PWV was above normal levels for age in 85/191 (44.5%) patients. Multivariate analysis showed that advanced age, systolic BP, diabetes mellitus, serum uric acid and calcium polystyrene sulfonate therapy or calcium-containing medication were independent predictors of PWV. A new parameter, Delta above upper limit of normal PWV (Delta PWV) was defined to decrease the weight of age on PWV values. Delta PWV was calculated as (measured PWV) - (upper limit of the age-adjusted PWV values for the general population). MeanSD Delta PWV was 0.761.60 m/sec. In multivariate analysis, systolic blood pressure, active smoking and calcium polystyrene sulfonate therapy remained independent predictors of higher delta PWV, while age, urinary potassium and beta blocker therapy were independent predictors of lower delta PWV. In conclusion, arterial stiffness was frequent in nephrology outpatients. Systolic blood pressure, smoking, serum uric acid, calcium-containing medications, potassium metabolism and non-use of beta blockers are modifiable factors associated with increased arterial stiffness in Nephrology outpatients. PMID:25880081

  4. Prevention and treatment of elbow stiffness.

    PubMed

    Evans, Peter J; Nandi, Sumon; Maschke, Steven; Hoyen, Harry A; Lawton, Jeffrey N

    2009-04-01

    The elbow is as prone to stiffness as it is essential for upper-extremity function. The elbow is a highly constrained synovial hinge joint that frequently becomes stiff after injury. Elbow contracture is challenging to treat, and therefore prevention is of paramount importance. When this approach fails, nonoperative followed by operative treatment modalities can be pursued. In the future, efforts to prevent and treat elbow stiffness may target the basic science mechanisms involved. PMID:19345886

  5. A Novel Technique of Quantifying Flexural Stiffness of Rod-Like Structures.

    PubMed

    Yao, Da-Kang; Shao, Jin-Yu

    2008-03-18

    In cellular and molecular biomechanics, extensional stiffness of rod-like structures such as leukocyte microvilli can be easily measured with many techniques, but not many techniques are available for measuring their flexural stiffness. In this paper, we report a novel technique of measuring the flexural stiffness of rod-like structures. This technique is based on image deconvolution and, as an example, it was used for determining the flexural stiffness of neutrophil microvilli. The probes we used were 40-nm-diameter fluorescent beads, which were bound to the tips of neutrophil microvilli by anti-L-selectin antibody. The fluorescent images of the bead, which was positioned at the center of the cell bottom, were acquired with high magnification and long exposure time (3 s). Using a Gaussian function as the point spread function of our imaging system, we established a convolution equation based on Boltzmann's law, which yields an analytical expression that relates the bead image profile to the flexural stiffness of the microvillus. The flexural stiffness was then obtained by the least squares regression. On average, the flexural stiffness was determined to be 7 pN/mum for single neutrophil microvilli. With the resolution of our imaging system, this technique can be used for measuring any flexural stiffness smaller than 34 pN/mum and it has great potential in single molecule biomechanics. PMID:20333317

  6. A Novel Technique of Quantifying Flexural Stiffness of Rod-Like Structures

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Da-Kang; Shao, Jin-Yu

    2010-01-01

    In cellular and molecular biomechanics, extensional stiffness of rod-like structures such as leukocyte microvilli can be easily measured with many techniques, but not many techniques are available for measuring their flexural stiffness. In this paper, we report a novel technique of measuring the flexural stiffness of rod-like structures. This technique is based on image deconvolution and, as an example, it was used for determining the flexural stiffness of neutrophil microvilli. The probes we used were 40-nm-diameter fluorescent beads, which were bound to the tips of neutrophil microvilli by anti-L-selectin antibody. The fluorescent images of the bead, which was positioned at the center of the cell bottom, were acquired with high magnification and long exposure time (3 s). Using a Gaussian function as the point spread function of our imaging system, we established a convolution equation based on Boltzmann’s law, which yields an analytical expression that relates the bead image profile to the flexural stiffness of the microvillus. The flexural stiffness was then obtained by the least squares regression. On average, the flexural stiffness was determined to be 7 pN/μm for single neutrophil microvilli. With the resolution of our imaging system, this technique can be used for measuring any flexural stiffness smaller than 34 pN/μm and it has great potential in single molecule biomechanics. PMID:20333317

  7. The differential effects of gender, anthropometry, and prior hormonal state on frontal plane knee joint stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Cammarata, Martha L.; Dhaher, Yasin Y.

    2012-01-01

    Background Gender differences in passive frontal plane knee stiffness may contribute to the increased anterior cruciate ligament injury rate in females. Gender-based stiffness differences have been attributed to anthropometric variations, but little data exist describing this relationship. Furthermore, sex hormone levels appear to influence joint stiffness, but the differential effects of instantaneous and prior hormonal concentrations remain unknown. This study sought to explore the effect of gender, prior hormonal status, and anthropometry on passive frontal plane knee joint stiffness. Methods Twelve males and 31 females participated. Females were grouped by hormonal contraceptive use (non users [n=11], monophasic contraceptive users [n=11], and triphasic contraceptive users [n=9]) and tested at the same point in the menstrual cycle. Subjects right knee was passively stretched 7 in the frontal plane at 3/s. Stiffness was estimated at three loading levels and normalized by body size to minimize anthropometric biases. A 4 (group) 3 (load) repeated measures analysis of variance was performed for both raw and normalized stiffness. Linear regression analyses were preformed between stiffness estimates and knee diameter and quadriceps femoris angle. Findings Males displayed significantly greater (P<0.05) frontal plane stiffness than females. When normalized, males displayed significantly greater stiffness in valgus (P<0.05), but not varus (P>0.05) than females. No significant effect (P>0.05) of prior hormonal state was found; however, when normalized, varus stiffness was significantly less for triphasic contraceptive users than the other female groups (P<0.05). Quadriceps femoris angle was negatively correlated and knee diameter was positively correlated to knee stiffness. Interpretation Consistent with earlier in vitro findings, our data may indicate that ligament material properties are gender specific. A deficit in passive knee joint stiffness may place a larger burden on the neuromuscular system to resist frontal plane loading in females. PMID:18479791

  8. Arterial stiffness, atherosclerosis and cardiovascular risk: Pathophysiologic mechanisms and emerging clinical indications.

    PubMed

    Palombo, Carlo; Kozakova, Michaela

    2016-02-01

    Arterial stiffness results from a degenerative process affecting mainly the extracellular matrix of elastic arteries under the effect of aging and risk factors. Changes in extracellular matrix proteins and in the mechanical properties of the vessel wall related to arterial stiffening may activate number of mechanisms involved also in the process of atherosclerosis. Several noninvasive methods are now available to estimate large artery stiffness in the clinical setting, including carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity, the reference for aortic stiffness estimate, and local distensibility measures of superficial arteries, namely carotid and femoral. An independent predictive value of arterial stiffness for cardiovascular events has been demonstrated in general as well as in selected populations, and reference values adjusted for age and blood pressure have been established. Thus, arterial stiffness is emerging as an interesting tissue biomarker for cardiovascular risk stratification and estimation of the individual "biological age". This paper overviews the mechanisms accounting for development and progression of arterial stiffness and for associations between arterial stiffness, atherosclerotic burden and incident cardiovascular events, summarizes the evidence and caveat for clinical use of stiffness as surrogate marker of cardiovascular risk, and briefly outlines some emerging methods for large artery stiffness characterization. PMID:26643779

  9. Investigation on Prototype Superconducting Linear Synchronous Motor (LSM) for 600-km/h Wheel-Type Railway

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eom, Beomyong; Lee, Changhyeong; Kim, Seokho; Lee, Changyoung; Yun, Sangwon

    The existing wheel-type high-speed railway with a rotatable motor has a limit of 600 km/h speed. The normal conducting electromagnet has several disadvantages to realize 600 km/h speed. Several disadvantages are the increased space and weight, and the decreased electric efficiency to generate the required high magnetic field. In order to reduce the volume and weight, superconducting electromagnets can be considered for LSM (Linear Synchronous Motor). Prior to the fabrication of the real system, a prototype demo-coil is designed and fabricated using 2G high temperature superconducting wire. The prototype HTS coil is cooled by the conduction using a GM cryocooler. To reduce the heat penetration, thermal design was performed for the current leads, supporting structure and radiation shield considering the thermal stress. The operating temperature and current are 30∼40 K and 100 A. The coil consists of two double pancake coils (N, S pole, respectively) and it is driven on a test rail, which is installed for the test car. This paper describes the design and test results of the prototype HTS LSM system. Thermal characteristics are investigated with additional dummy thermal mass on the coil after turning off the cryocooler.

  10. Comparison of a manual and motorized stiffness meter to quantify bone regeneration in distraction osteogenesis.

    PubMed

    Thorey, Fritz; Floerkemeier, Thilo; Wellmann, Matthias; Windhagen, Henning

    2009-01-01

    To assess bone healing and investigate the influence of different pharmaceutics (e.g. growth factors) on bone stiffness and strength in-vivo, new quantitative methods are necessary. Therefore, a new manual and motorized stiffness meter to quantify bone regeneration in a model of distraction osteogenesis were compared. The design, equipment, and improvements of the measurement devices are described. Furthermore, their difference in precision and accuracy in comparison to tests from a material testing system, used as "gold standard", were evaluated. Both devices were able to assess regenerate stiffness: the accuracy ranged between +/- 9% for the manual and +/-5% for the motorized version for stiffness data over 0.1 Nm/ degrees; precision between +/- 3.8% for the manual and +/- 3.2% for the motorized device. In summary, the two stiffness measurement devices described in this study have the power to monitor the beginning of bone healing and therefore predict the load bearing capacity of regenerating bone. The motorized version showed advantages over the manual device when investigating and monitoring the stiffness of bone during a consolidation period: (1) better accuracy in both stiffness below and above 0.1 Nm/ degrees, (2) a better precision in the stiffness range of interest, (3) easier handling, and (4) standardisation of the measurement process using the stepper motor and definition of the maximums of torque, angulation and rotation speed. PMID:20051616

  11. Matrix Stiffness Corresponding to Strictured Bowel Induces a Fibrogenic Response in Human Colonic Fibroblasts

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Laura A.; Rodansky, Eva S.; Sauder, Kay L.; Horowitz, Jeffrey C.; Mih, Justin D.; Tschumperlin, Daniel J.; Higgins, Peter D.

    2013-01-01

    Background Crohns disease is characterized by repeated cycles of inflammation and mucosal healing which ultimately progress to intestinal fibrosis. This inexorable progression towards fibrosis suggests that fibrosis becomes inflammation-independent and auto-propagative. We hypothesized that matrix stiffness regulates this auto-propagation of intestinal fibrosis. Methods The stiffness of fresh ex vivo samples from normal human small intestine, Crohns disease strictures, and the unaffected margin were measured with a microelastometer. Normal human colonic fibroblasts were cultured on physiologically normal or pathologically stiff matrices corresponding to the physiological stiffness of normal or fibrotic bowel. Cellular response was assayed for changes in cell morphology, ?-smooth muscle actin (?SMA) staining, and gene expression. Results Microelastometer measurements revealed a significant increase in colonic tissue stiffness between normal human colon and Crohns strictures as well as between the stricture and adjacent tissue margin. In Ccd-18co cells grown on stiff matrices corresponding to Crohns strictures, cellular proliferation increased. Pathologic stiffness induced a marked change in cell morphology and increased ?SMA protein expression. Growth on a stiff matrix induced fibrogenic gene expression, decreased matrix metalloproteinase and pro-inflammatory gene expression, and was associated with nuclear localization of the transcriptional cofactor MRTF-A. Conclusions Matrix stiffness, representative of the pathological stiffness of Crohns strictures, activates human colonic fibroblasts to a fibrogenic phenotype. Matrix stiffness affects multiple pathways suggesting the mechanical properties of the cellular environment are critical to fibroblast function and may contribute to autopropagation of intestinal fibrosis in the absence of inflammation, thereby contributing to the intractable intestinal fibrosis characteristic of Crohns disease. PMID:23502354

  12. Stiffness and hysteresis properties of some prosthetic feet.

    PubMed

    van Jaarsveld, H W; Grootenboer, H J; de Vries, J; Koopman, H F

    1990-12-01

    A prosthetic foot is an important element of a prosthesis, although it is not always fully recognized that the properties of the foot, along with the prosthetic knee joint and the socket, are in part responsible for the stability and metabolic energy cost during walking. The stiffness and the hysteresis, which are the topics of this paper, are not properly prescribed, but could be adapted to improve the prosthetic walking performance. The shape is strongly related to the cosmetic appearance and so can not be altered to effect these improvements. Because detailed comparable data on foot stiffness and hysteresis, which are necessary to quantify the differences between different types of feet, are absent in literature, these properties were measured by the authors in a laboratory setup for nine different prosthetic feet, bare and with two different shoes. One test cycle consisted of measurements of load deformation curves in 66 positions, representing the range from heel strike to toe-off. The hysteresis is defined by the energy loss as a part of the total deformation energy. Without shoes significant differences in hysteresis between the feet exist, while with sport shoes the differences in hysteresis between the feet vanish for the most part. Applying a leather shoe leads to an increase of hysteresis loss for all tested feet. The stiffness turned out to be non-constant, so mean stiffness is used.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:2095529

  13. Cardiovascular Health and Arterial Stiffness: The Maine Syracuse Longitudinal Study

    PubMed Central

    Crichton, Georgina E; Elias, Merrill F; Robbins, Michael A

    2014-01-01

    Ideal cardiovascular health is a recently defined construct by the American Heart Association (AHA) to promote cardiovascular disease reduction. Arterial stiffness is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease. The extent to which the presence of multiple prevalent cardiovascular risk factors and health behaviors is associated with arterial stiffness is unknown. The aim of this study was to examine the association between the AHA construct of cardiovascular health and arterial stiffness, as indexed by pulse wave velocity and pulse pressure. The AHA health metrics, comprising of four health behaviors (smoking, body mass index, physical activity, and diet) and three health factors (total cholesterol, blood pressure, and fasting plasma glucose) were evaluated among 505 participants in the Maine-Syracuse Longitudinal Study. Outcome measures were carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV) and pulse pressure measured at 4 to 5-year follow-up. Better cardiovascular health, comprising both health factors and behaviors, was associated with lower arterial stiffness, as indexed by pulse wave velocity and pulse pressure. Those with at least five health metrics at ideal levels had significantly lower PWV (9.8 m/s) than those with two or less ideal health metrics (11.7 m/s) (P<0.001). This finding remained with the addition of demographic and PWV-related variables (P=0.004). PMID:24384629

  14. Stiffness of hair bundles in the chick cochlea.

    PubMed

    Szymko, Y M; Dimitri, P S; Saunders, J C

    1992-05-01

    The stiffness of hair bundles from isolated chick cochlear hair cells was measured in tissue culture medium. A water jet was used to deflect fiberglass fibers, quartz fibers, and hair bundles of isolated hair cells. A voltage-displacement curve was generated for a water jet ramp stimulus applied to miniature fiberglass and quartz fibers. Fiber displacements were measured using video image subtraction techniques. A force-voltage calibration curve was then derived for the fibers by modelling them as cantilever beams subjected to point forces at the tips. A voltage-displacement curve was then generated for isolated hair cell stereociliary bundles using the same procedure as for the fibers. A corresponding force-displacement curve was derived for isolated hair cells under water jet stimulation by correlating maximum ramp voltage from the hair cell's voltage-displacement curve to a corresponding force applied to a fiber from the fiberglass fiber calibration curve. The stiffness of the hair bundle, which is the slope of the hair cell's force-displacement curve, was then calculated using Hooke's law, assuming the force was distributed along the entire length of the hair bundle. The mean stiffness value was 5.04 +/- 2.68 x 10(-4) N/m for 14 hair cells, and was in close agreement with previously reported stiffness values of several investigators utilizing different animal models and procedures. PMID:1618714

  15. Stiffness of the gerbil basilar membrane: radial and longitudinal variations.

    PubMed

    Emadi, Gulam; Richter, Claus-Peter; Dallos, Peter

    2004-01-01

    Experimental data on the mechanical properties of the tissues of the mammalian cochlea are essential for understanding the frequency- and location-dependent motion patterns that result in response to incoming sound waves. Within the cochlea, sound-induced vibrations are transduced into neural activity by the organ of Corti, the gross motion of which is dependent on the motion of the underlying basilar membrane. In this study we present data on stiffness of the gerbil basilar membrane measured at multiple positions within a cochlear cross section and at multiple locations along the length of the cochlea. A basic analysis of these data using relatively simple models of cochlear mechanics reveals our most important result: the experimentally measured longitudinal stiffness gradient at the middle of the pectinate zone of the basilar membrane (4.43 dB/mm) can account for changes of best frequency along the length of the cochlea. Furthermore, our results indicate qualitative changes of stiffness-deflection curves as a function of radial position; in particular, there are differences in the rate of stiffness growth with increasing tissue deflection. Longitudinal coupling within the basilar membrane/organ of Corti complex is determined to have a space constant of 21 microm in the middle turn of the cochlea. The bulk of our data was obtained in the hemicochlea preparation, and we include a comparison of this set of data to data obtained in vivo. PMID:14523077

  16. Influence of substrate stiffness on the phenotype of heart cells.

    PubMed

    Bhana, Bashir; Iyer, Rohin K; Chen, Wen Li Kelly; Zhao, Ruogang; Sider, Krista L; Likhitpanichkul, Morakot; Simmons, Craig A; Radisic, Milica

    2010-04-15

    Adult cardiomyocytes (CM) retain little capacity to regenerate, which motivates efforts to engineer heart tissues that can emulate the functional and mechanical properties of native myocardium. Although the effects of matrix stiffness on individual CM have been explored, less attention was devoted to studies at the monolayer and the tissue level. The purpose of this study was to characterize the influence of substrate mechanical stiffness on the heart cell phenotype and functional properties. Neonatal rat heart cells were seeded onto collagen-coated polyacrylamide (PA) substrates with Young's moduli of 3, 22, 50, and 144 kPa. Collagen-coated glass coverslips without PA represented surfaces with effectively "infinite" stiffness. The local elastic modulus of native neonatal rat heart tissue was measured to range from 4.0 to 11.4 kPa (mean value of 6.8 kPa) and for native adult rat heart tissue from 11.9 to 46.2 kPa (mean value of 25.6 kPa), motivating our choice of the above PA gel stiffness. Overall, by 120 h of cultivation, the lowest stiffness PA substrates (3 kPa) exhibited the lowest excitation threshold (ET; 3.5 +/- 0.3 V/cm), increased troponin I staining (52% positively stained area) but reduced cell density, force of contraction (0.18 +/- 0.1 mN/mm(2)), and cell elongation (aspect ratio = 1.3-1.4). Higher stiffness (144 kPa) PA substrates exhibited reduced troponin I staining (30% positively stained area), increased fibroblast density (70% positively stained area), and poor electrical excitability. Intermediate stiffness PA substrates of stiffness comparable to the native adult rat myocardium (22-50 kPa) were found to be optimal for heart cell morphology and function, with superior elongation (aspect ratio > 4.3), reasonable ET (ranging from 3.95 +/- 0.8 to 4.4 +/- 0.7 V/cm), high contractile force development (ranging from 0.52 +/- 0.2 to 1.60 +/- 0.6 mN/mm(2)), and well-developed striations, all consistent with a differentiated phenotype. PMID:20014437

  17. Spontaneous wrinkle branching by gradient stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ni, Yong; Yang, Dong; He, Linghui

    2012-09-01

    The concept of coherency loss is proposed to understand wrinkle branching as a pathway toward hierarchical wrinkling pattern formation in a compressed film-substrate system with gradient stiffness of the film or substrate. A simple model indicates that the wrinkle branching arises when the characteristic length of the stiffness inhomogeneity zone is larger than the coherency persistent length, which depends on the amplitude of the stiffness inhomogeneity. Numerical simulations of nonlinear wrinkles based on the model of the Fppl-von Krmn plate on compliant substrates show how regulating the size and amplitude of the stiffness inhomogeneities results in branched wrinkles in striking agreement with the existing observations. The paper reveals the origin of such kinds of branched wrinkles and may provide a guideline for controllable hierarchical wrinkles by patterning the stiffness gradient.

  18. Spontaneous wrinkle branching by gradient stiffness.

    PubMed

    Ni, Yong; Yang, Dong; He, Linghui

    2012-09-01

    The concept of coherency loss is proposed to understand wrinkle branching as a pathway toward hierarchical wrinkling pattern formation in a compressed film-substrate system with gradient stiffness of the film or substrate. A simple model indicates that the wrinkle branching arises when the characteristic length of the stiffness inhomogeneity zone is larger than the coherency persistent length, which depends on the amplitude of the stiffness inhomogeneity. Numerical simulations of nonlinear wrinkles based on the model of the Fppl-von Krmn plate on compliant substrates show how regulating the size and amplitude of the stiffness inhomogeneities results in branched wrinkles in striking agreement with the existing observations. The paper reveals the origin of such kinds of branched wrinkles and may provide a guideline for controllable hierarchical wrinkles by patterning the stiffness gradient. PMID:23030926

  19. Rolling Element Bearing Stiffness Matrix Determination (Presentation)

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Y.; Parker, R.

    2014-01-01

    Current theoretical bearing models differ in their stiffness estimates because of different model assumptions. In this study, a finite element/contact mechanics model is developed for rolling element bearings with the focus of obtaining accurate bearing stiffness for a wide range of bearing types and parameters. A combined surface integral and finite element method is used to solve for the contact mechanics between the rolling elements and races. This model captures the time-dependent characteristics of the bearing contact due to the orbital motion of the rolling elements. A numerical method is developed to determine the full bearing stiffness matrix corresponding to two radial, one axial, and two angular coordinates; the rotation about the shaft axis is free by design. This proposed stiffness determination method is validated against experiments in the literature and compared to existing analytical models and widely used advanced computational methods. The fully-populated stiffness matrix demonstrates the coupling between bearing radial, axial, and tilting bearing deflections.

  20. Acute and Chronic Impact of Dynamic Exercise on Arterial Stiffness in Older Hypertensives

    PubMed Central

    Aizawa, Kunihiko; Petrella, Robert J.

    2008-01-01

    Arterial stiffness increases with ageing and hypertension. Regular physical activity has been recommended as an important management component of hypertension. The purpose of this study was to examine the acute impact of maximal dynamic exercise and the effect of 20 weeks of aerobic exercise on arterial stiffness of the carotid and brachial arteries in older hypertensives. Nine previously sedentary and treated older hypertensives (2 men and 7 women, age 68.2 5.4 yrs) performed maximal treadmill exercise to volitional fatigue while arterial stiffness indices (arterial distensibility and ? stiffness index) were measured prior to, immediately (about 10 min) following, and 24 h following maximal exercise. These measurements were repeated following 20 weeks of moderate intensity aerobic exercise training. Maximal exercise had no impact on arterial stiffness indices immediately and 24 h following exercise intervention. Following 20 weeks of training, arterial stiffness indices remained unchanged at rest and following maximal exercise. These data show that, in older hypertensives, 1) acute maximal dynamic exercise had no impact on arterial stiffness of the carotid and brachial arteries, and 2) 20 weeks of moderate intensity aerobic exercise training failed to modify arterial stiffness. PMID:18949091

  1. Stiffness and damping characteristics of aluminum in creep

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berkovits, A.

    1977-01-01

    Tensile creep tests conducted at 200 C were performed on annealed commercially pure aluminum specimens in order to measure the dominant elevated temperature dislocation processes. Testing consisted of applying small lateral loads to measure flexural stiffness, and vibrating the specimens laterally in order to measure dynamic modulus and internal damping. It was concluded that (1) the strain hardening increased static stiffness and decreased internal damping during early creep, and (2) the dynamic modulus remained essentially constant at the elastic value during creep. These results imply that primary creep may constitute a mechanism of recovery of dislocatory disorder induced by yielding the material during loading, and that the inelastic modulus utilized as a mathematical concept in several creep buckling theories is not a directly measurable material property.

  2. The Difference between Stiffness and Quasi-stiffness in the Context of Biomechanical Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Rouse, Elliott J.; Gregg, Robert D.; Hargrove, Levi J.; Sensinger, Jonathon W.

    2014-01-01

    The ankle contributes the majority of mechanical power during walking and is a frequently studied joint in biomechanics. Specifically, researchers have extensively investigated the torque-angle relationship for the ankle during dynamic tasks, such as walking and running. The slope of this relationship has been termed the “quasi-stiffness.” However, over time, researchers have begun to interchange the concepts of quasi-stiffness and stiffness. This is an especially important distinction as researchers currently begin to investigate the appropriate control systems for recently developed powered prosthetic legs. The quasi-stiffness and stiffness are distinct concepts in the context of powered joints, and are equivalent in the context of passive joints. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the difference between the stiffness and quasi-stiffness using a simple impedance controlled inverted pendulum model and a more sophisticated biped walking model, each with the ability to modify the trajectory of an impedance controller’s equilibrium angle position. In both cases, stiffness values are specified by the controller and the quasi-stiffness are shown during a single step. Both models have widely varying quasi-stiffness but each have a single stiffness value. Therefore, from this simple modeling approach, the differences and similarities between these two concepts are elucidated. PMID:23212310

  3. The difference between stiffness and quasi-stiffness in the context of biomechanical modeling.

    PubMed

    Rouse, Elliott J; Gregg, Robert D; Hargrove, Levi J; Sensinger, Jonathon W

    2013-02-01

    The ankle contributes the majority of mechanical power during walking and is a frequently studied joint in biomechanics. Specifically, researchers have extensively investigated the torque-angle relationship for the ankle during dynamic tasks, such as walking and running. The slope of this relationship has been termed the "quasi-stiffness." However, over time, researchers have begun to interchange the concepts of quasi-stiffness and stiffness. This is an especially important distinction as researchers currently begin to investigate the appropriate control systems for recently developed powered prosthetic legs. The quasi-stiffness and stiffness are distinct concepts in the context of powered joints, and are equivalent in the context of passive joints. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the difference between the stiffness and quasi-stiffness using a simple impedance-controlled inverted pendulum model and a more sophisticated biped walking model, each with the ability to modify the trajectory of an impedance controller's equilibrium angle position. In both cases, stiffness values are specified by the controller and the quasi-stiffness are shown during a single step. Both models have widely varying quasi-stiffness but each have a single stiffness value. Therefore, from this simple modeling approach, the differences and similarities between these two concepts are elucidated. PMID:23212310

  4. Leg and Joint Stiffness in Children with Spastic Diplegic Cerebral Palsy during Level Walking

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ting-Ming; Huang, Hsing-Po; Li, Jia-Da; Hong, Shih-Wun; Lo, Wei-Ching; Lu, Tung-Wu

    2015-01-01

    Individual joint deviations are often identified in the analysis of cerebral palsy (CP) gait. However, knowledge is limited as to how these deviations affect the control of the locomotor system as a whole when striving to meet the demands of walking. The current study aimed to bridge the gap by describing the control of the locomotor system in children with diplegic CP in terms of their leg stiffness, both skeletal and muscular components, and associated joint stiffness during gait. Twelve children with spastic diplegia CP and 12 healthy controls walked at a self-selected pace in a gait laboratory while their kinematic and forceplate data were measured and analyzed during loading response, mid-stance, terminal stance and pre-swing. For calculating the leg stiffness, each of the lower limbs was modeled as a non-linear spring, connecting the hip joint center and the corresponding center of pressure, with varying stiffness that was calculated as the slope (gradient) of the axial force vs. the deformation curve. The leg stiffness was further decomposed into skeletal and muscular components considering the alignment of the lower limb. The ankle, knee and hip of the limb were modeled as revolute joints with torsional springs whose stiffness was calculated as the slope of the moment vs. the angle curve of the joint. Independent t-tests were performed for between-group comparisons of all the variables. The CP group significantly decreased the leg stiffness but increased the joint stiffness during stance phase, except during terminal stance where the leg stiffness was increased. They appeared to rely more on muscular contributions to achieve the required leg stiffness, increasing the muscular demands in maintaining the body posture against collapse. Leg stiffness plays a critical role in modulating the kinematics and kinetics of the locomotor system during gait in the diplegic CP. PMID:26629700

  5. Stiff Coatings on Compliant Biofibers

    PubMed Central

    Holten-Andersen, Niels; Zhao, Hua; Waite, J. Herbert

    2009-01-01

    For lasting holdfast attachment, the mussel Mytilus californianus coats its byssal threads with a protective cuticle 2-5 μm thick that is 4-6 times stiffer than the underlying collagen fibers. Although cuticle hardness (0.1 GPa) and stiffness (2 GPa) resemble those observed in related mussels, a more effective dispersion of microdamage enables M. californianus byssal threads to sustain strains to almost 120% before cuticle rupture occurs. Underlying factors for the superior damage tolerance of the byssal cuticle were explored in its microarchitecture and in the cuticular protein, mcfp-1. Cuticle microstructure was distinctly granular, with granule diameters (∼200 nm) only a quarter of those in M. galloprovincialis cuticle, for example. Compared with homologous proteins in related mussel species, mcfp-1 from M. californianus had a similar mass (∼92 kDa) and number of tandemly repeated decapeptides, and contained the same post-translational modifications, namely, trans-4-hydroxyproline, trans-2,3-cis-3,4-dihydroxyproline, and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (Dopa). The prominence of isoleucine in mcfp-1, however, distinguished it from homologues in other species. The complete protein sequence deduced from cDNAs for two related variants revealed a highly conserved consensus decapeptide PKISYPPTYK that is repeated 64 times and differs slightly from the consensus peptide (AKPSYPPTYK) of both M. galloprovincialis and M. edulis proteins. PMID:19220048

  6. Smart fabric adaptive stiffness for active vibration absorbers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albanese, Anne-Marie; Cunefare, Kenneth A.

    2004-07-01

    Unconstrained magnetorheological-elastomers (MRE) experience a stiffness increase and elastomeric deformation in response to an applied magnetic field. An MRE consists of ferromagnetic particles dispersed in a host elastomer matrix. This study considers whether the stiffness change of MRE springs is due to magnetic particle-to-particle interactions or to elastomer deformation. If the stiffening is attributable to magnetic particle interaction, then it should occur even in the absence of the elastomer. To test this hypothesis, a smart fabric consisting of low-carbon steel thread in one direction and nonmagnetic thread in the other was created. Two extension springs were placed in parallel with this smart fabric, and placed in between two iron masses. An electromagnet coil wound about one of the masses provided the source of magnetic field across the smart fabric. The frequency response of the device was measured when the coil was driven by a DC current, at 0.5 Amp increments, from 0 to 4. The device exhibited a 33% increase in stiffness at 4 Amps compared to the stiffness at 0 Amps. While this shift is not as large as shifts observed in MREs, the design was not optimized for iron content, and only had a 0.6% iron content.

  7. Stiff substrates enhance cultured neuronal network activity

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Quan-You; Zhang, Yan-Yan; Xie, Jing; Li, Chen-Xu; Chen, Wei-Yi; Liu, Bai-Lin; Wu, Xiao-an; Li, Shu-Na; Huo, Bo; Jiang, Lin-Hua; Zhao, Hu-Cheng

    2014-01-01

    The mechanical property of extracellular matrix and cell-supporting substrates is known to modulate neuronal growth, differentiation, extension and branching. Here we show that substrate stiffness is an important microenvironmental cue, to which mouse hippocampal neurons respond and integrate into synapse formation and transmission in cultured neuronal network. Hippocampal neurons were cultured on polydimethylsiloxane substrates fabricated to have similar surface properties but a 10-fold difference in Young's modulus. Voltage-gated Ca2+ channel currents determined by patch-clamp recording were greater in neurons on stiff substrates than on soft substrates. Ca2+ oscillations in cultured neuronal network monitored using time-lapse single cell imaging increased in both amplitude and frequency among neurons on stiff substrates. Consistently, synaptic connectivity recorded by paired recording was enhanced between neurons on stiff substrates. Furthermore, spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic activity became greater and more frequent in neurons on stiff substrates. Evoked excitatory transmitter release and excitatory postsynaptic currents also were heightened at synapses between neurons on stiff substrates. Taken together, our results provide compelling evidence to show that substrate stiffness is an important biophysical factor modulating synapse connectivity and transmission in cultured hippocampal neuronal network. Such information is useful in designing instructive scaffolds or supporting substrates for neural tissue engineering. PMID:25163607

  8. Is the negative equivalent stiffness of a system possible?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Mohan

    2016-01-01

    The negative stiffness concept is seldom encountered in high school courses as well as in college courses. This paper reports a system with negative equivalent stiffness, which is the most important component in constructing a quasi-zero stiffness isolator.

  9. Non-cross-bridge calcium-dependent stiffness in frog muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Bagni, M A; Colombini, B; Geiger, P; Berlinguer Palmini, R; Cecchi, G

    2004-06-01

    At the end of the force transient elicited by a fast stretch applied to an activated frog muscle fiber, the force settles to a steady level exceeding the isometric level preceding the stretch. We showed previously that this excess of tension, referred to as "static tension," is due to the elongation of some elastic sarcomere structure, outside the cross bridges. The stiffness of this structure, "static stiffness," increased upon stimulation following a time course well distinct from tension and roughly similar to intracellular Ca(2+) concentration. In the experiments reported here, we investigated the possible role of Ca(2+) in static stiffness by comparing static stiffness measurements in the presence of Ca(2+) release inhibitors (D600, Dantrolene, (2)H(2)O) and cross-bridge formation inhibitors [2,3-butanedione monoxime (BDM), hypertonicity]. Both series of agents inhibited tension; however, only D600, Dantrolene, and (2)H(2)O decreased at the same time static stiffness, whereas BDM and hypertonicity left static stiffness unaltered. These results indicate that Ca(2+), in addition to promoting cross-bridge formation, increases the stiffness of an (unidentified) elastic structure of the sarcomere. This stiffness increase may help in maintaining the sarcomere length uniformity under conditions of instability. PMID:14749216

  10. The effects of isometric and isotonic training on hamstring stiffness and anterior cruciate ligament loading mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Blackburn, J Troy; Norcross, Marc F

    2014-02-01

    Greater hamstring musculotendinous stiffness is associated with lesser ACL loading mechanisms. Stiffness is enhanced via training, but previous investigations evaluated tendon rather than musculotendinous stiffness, and none involved the hamstrings. We evaluated the effects of isometric and isotonic training on hamstring stiffness and ACL loading mechanisms. Thirty-six healthy volunteers were randomly assigned to isometric, isotonic, and control groups. Isometric and isotonic groups completed 6 weeks of training designed to enhance hamstring stiffness. Stiffness, anterior tibial translation, and landing biomechanics were measured prior to and following the interventions. Hamstring stiffness increased significantly with isometric training (15.7%; p=0.006), but not in the isotonic (13.5%; p=0.089) or control (0.4%; p=0.942) groups. ACL loading mechanisms changed in manners consistent with lesser loading, but these changes were not statistically significant. These findings suggest that isometric training may be an important addition to ACL injury prevention programs. The lack of significant changes in ACL loading mechanisms and effects of isotonic training were likely due to the small sample sizes per group and limited intervention duration. Future research using larger sample sizes and longer interventions is necessary to determine the effects of enhancing hamstring stiffness on ACL loading and injury risk. PMID:24268874

  11. Non-crossbridge calcium-dependent stiffness in slow and fast skeletal fibres from mouse muscle.

    PubMed

    Nocella, Marta; Colombini, Barbara; Bagni, Maria Angela; Bruton, Joseph; Cecchi, Giovanni

    2012-03-01

    We showed previously that force development in frog and FDB mouse skeletal muscle fibres is preceded by an increase of fibre stiffness occurring well before crossbridge attachment and force generation. This stiffness increase, referred to as static stiffness, is due to a Ca(2+)-dependent stiffening of a non-crossbridge sarcomere structure which we suggested could be attributed to the titin filaments. To investigate further the role of titin in static stiffness, we measured static stiffness properties at 24 and 35C in soleus and EDL mouse muscle fibres which are known to express different titin isoforms. We found that static stiffness was present in both soleus and EDL fibres, however, its value was about five times greater in EDL than in soleus fibres. The rate of development of static stiffness on stimulation increased with temperature and was slightly faster in EDL than in soleus in agreement with previously published data on the time course of the intracellular Ca(2+) transients in these muscles. The present results show that the presence of a non-crossbridge Ca(2+)-dependent stiffening of the muscle fibre is a physiological general characteristic of skeletal muscle. Static stiffness depends on fibre type, being greater and developing faster in fast than in slow fibres. Our observations are consistent with the idea that titin stiffening on contraction improves the sarcomere structure stability. Such an action in fact seems to be more important in EDL fast fibre than in soleus slow fibres. PMID:22072314

  12. Stiffness matrix formulation for double row angular contact ball bearings: Analytical development and validation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gunduz, Aydin; Singh, Rajendra

    2013-10-01

    Though double row angular contact ball bearings are widely used in industrial, automotive, and aircraft applications, the scientific literature on double row bearings is sparse. It is also shown that the stiffness matrices of two single row bearings may not be simply superposed to obtain the stiffness matrix of a double row bearing. To overcome the deficiency in the literature, a new, comprehensive, analytical approach is proposed based on the Hertzian theory for back-to-back, face-to-face, and tandem arrangements. The elements of the five-dimensional stiffness matrix for double row angular contact ball bearings are computed given either the mean bearing displacement or the mean load vector. The diagonal elements of the proposed stiffness matrix are verified with a commercial code for all arrangements under three loading scenarios. Some changes in stiffness coefficients are investigated by varying critical kinematic and geometric parameters to provide more insight. Finally, the calculated natural frequencies of a shaft-bearing experiment are successfully compared with measurements, thus validating the proposed stiffness formulation. For double row angular contact ball bearings, the moment stiffness and cross-coupling stiffness terms are significant, and the contact angle changes under loads. The proposed formulation is also valid for paired (duplex) bearings which behave as an integrated double row unit when the surrounding structural elements are sufficiently rigid.

  13. A novel cell-stiffness-fingerprinting analysis by scanning atomic force microscopy: comparison of fibroblasts and diverse cancer cell lines.

    PubMed

    Zoellner, Hans; Paknejad, Navid; Manova, Katia; Moore, Malcolm A S

    2015-12-01

    Differing stimuli affect cell stiffness while cancer metastasis is associated with reduced cell stiffness. Cell stiffness determined by atomic force microscopy has been limited by measurement over nuclei to avoid spurious substratum effects in thin cytoplasmic domains, and we sought to develop a more complete approach including cytoplasmic areas. Ninety?m square fields were recorded from ten separate sites of cultured human dermal fibroblasts (HDF) and three sites each for melanoma (MM39, WM175, and MeIRMu), osteosarcoma (SAOS-2 and U2OS), and ovarian carcinoma (COLO316 and PEO4) cell lines, each site providing 1024 measurements as 32נ32 square grids. Stiffness recorded below 0.8?m height was occasionally influenced by substratum, so only stiffness recorded above 0.8?m was analysed, but all sites were included for height and volume analysis. COLO316 had the lowest cell height and volume, followed by HDF (p<0.0001) and then PEO4, SAOS-2, MeIRMu, WM175, U2OS, and MM39. HDF were more stiff than all other cells (p<0.0001), while in descending order of stiffness were PEO4, COLO316, WM175, SAOS-2, U2OS, MM39, and MeIRMu (p<0.02). Stiffness fingerprints comprised scattergrams of stiffness values plotted against the height at which each stiffness value was recorded and appeared unique for each cell type studied, although in most cases the overall form of fingerprints was similar, with maximum stiffness at low height measurements and a second lower peak occurring at high-height levels. We suggest that our stiffness-fingerprint analytical method provides a more nuanced description than previously reported and will facilitate study of the stiffness response to cell stimulation. PMID:26357955

  14. Quantifying Parameter Sensitivity, Interaction and Transferability in Hydrologically Enhanced Versions of Noah-LSM over Transition Zones

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosero, Enrique; Yang, Zong-Liang; Wagener, Thorsten; Gulden, Lindsey E.; Yatheendradas, Soni; Niu, Guo-Yue

    2009-01-01

    We use sensitivity analysis to identify the parameters that are most responsible for shaping land surface model (LSM) simulations and to understand the complex interactions in three versions of the Noah LSM: the standard version (STD), a version enhanced with a simple groundwater module (GW), and version augmented by a dynamic phenology module (DV). We use warm season, high-frequency, near-surface states and turbulent fluxes collected over nine sites in the US Southern Great Plains. We quantify changes in the pattern of sensitive parameters, the amount and nature of the interaction between parameters, and the covariance structure of the distribution of behavioral parameter sets. Using Sobol s total and first-order sensitivity indexes, we show that very few parameters directly control the variance of the model output. Significant parameter interaction occurs so that not only the optimal parameter values differ between models, but the relationships between parameters change. GW decreases parameter interaction and appears to improve model realism, especially at wetter sites. DV increases parameter interaction and decreases identifiability, implying it is overparameterized and/or underconstrained. A case study at a wet site shows GW has two functional modes: one that mimics STD and a second in which GW improves model function by decoupling direct evaporation and baseflow. Unsupervised classification of the posterior distributions of behavioral parameter sets cannot group similar sites based solely on soil or vegetation type, helping to explain why transferability between sites and models is not straightforward. This evidence suggests a priori assignment of parameters should also consider climatic differences.

  15. Modelling terrestrial biogenic isoprene fluxes and their potential impact on global chemical species using a coupled LSM-CTM model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, K.-Y.; Shallcross, D. E.

    In this paper we investigate the important role of the biogenic species isoprene on tropospheric chemistry using a land surface model (LSM) and a three-dimensional (3-D) tropospheric chemistry transport model (CTM). An efficient and conservative coupling scheme is used to couple the LSM to the 3-D CTM. Annual integrations of the coupled model have been performed and the results compared with other estimates. The comparison shows that the annual global isoprene flux from terrestrial vegetation is 530 Tg C yr -1, which is in good agreement with 503 Tg C yr -1 estimated by a high-resolution (0.50.5) vegetation model of Guenther et al. (1995, Journal of Geophysical Research 100 (D5), 8873-8892). Comparison of the seasonal variations of the surface emission distribution between the coupled model and Guenther et al. (1995) also shows close agreement. The potential impact of isoprene on the levels of tropospheric species is studied by running the same coupled model for the period of June-December but without biogenic isoprene emissions included, and the results are compared with the run which includes biogenic isoprene emissions. Our comparison indicates a significant difference in O 3 and PAN for both hemispheres. The discrepancy between the run with and without isoprene is predominantly governed by the spatial and temporal variations of terrestrial vegetation. The largest difference is seen in the summertime northern hemisphere at locations with extensive terrestrial vegetation (e.g. North America, Europe, east and southeast Asia, South America and equatorial central Africa). For O 3, there is about a 4 ppbv increase over the oceanic areas and about an 8-12 ppbv increase over the mid-latitude land areas. For PAN, a maximum of about one order of magnitude in difference, which increases from 0.01 ppbv (without isoprene emissions) to 0.1-0.3 ppbv (with isoprene emissions), is seen in areas of extensive terrestrial vegetation.

  16. The viscoelastic stiffness model of seismicity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cohen, S. C.

    1978-01-01

    A viscoelastic stiffness model of seismicity is developed by introducing a viscoelastic element into the stiffness model for fault dynamics. The introduction of this element permits modeling of transient anelastic deformations in response to stress loading and relaxation and provides a mechanism for partial stress recovery following an earthquake. As a consequence, several phenomena not present in elastic stiffness theory emerge. These include postseismic creep, foreshocks, and aftershocks. Numerical simulations of fault motion also reveal episodes of stable sliding, tertiary creep preceeding earthquakes, and long-term aseismic creep.

  17. Characteristics of high-stiffness superconducting bearing

    SciTech Connect

    Okano, M.; Tamada, N.; Fuchino, S.; Ishii, I.

    1996-07-01

    Magnetic bearings using a high-Tc superconductor have been studied. Generally the bearing makes use of the pinning effects to get the levitation force. The stiffness of the bearing, however, is extremely low as compared with industrial-scale conventional one. To improve the bearing stiffness the authors propose a disc-type repulsive superconducting thrust bearing with a slit for the restraint of the flux. Both theoretical and experimental evaluation on the load performance was carried out, and it is clarified that the proposed superconducting bearing has higher stiffness.

  18. “Smooth Muscle Cell Stiffness Syndrome”—Revisiting the Structural Basis of Arterial Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Sehgel, Nancy L.; Vatner, Stephen F.; Meininger, Gerald A.

    2015-01-01

    In recent decades, the pervasiveness of increased arterial stiffness in patients with cardiovascular disease has become increasingly apparent. Though, this phenomenon has been well documented in humans and animal models of disease for well over a century, there has been surprisingly limited development in a deeper mechanistic understanding of arterial stiffness. Much of the historical literature has focused on changes in extracellular matrix proteins—collagen and elastin. However, extracellular matrix changes alone appear insufficient to consistently account for observed changes in vascular stiffness, which we observed in our studies of aortic stiffness in aging monkeys. This led us to examine novel mechanisms operating at the level of the vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC)—that include increased cell stiffness and adhesion to extracellular matrix—which that may be interrelated with other mechanisms contributing to arterial stiffness. We introduce these observations as a new concept—the Smooth Muscle Cell Stiffness Syndrome (SMCSS)—within the field of arterial stiffness and posit that stiffening of vascular cells impairs vascular function and may contribute stiffening to the vasculature with aging and cardiovascular disease. Importantly, this review article revisits the structural basis of arterial stiffness in light of these novel findings. Such classification of SMCSS and its contextualization into our current understanding of vascular mechanics may be useful in the development of strategic therapeutics to directly target arterial stiffness. PMID:26635621

  19. Force, stiffness and hysteresis losses in high temperature superconducting bearings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cansiz, Ahmet

    The vertical and horizontal forces and associated stiffnesses on a permanent magnet above a high- temperature superconductor were measured during vertical and horizontal traverses in zero-field cooling and in field cooling. In field cooling and zero field cooling, the vertical stiffness showed history dependence. In field cooling, the vertical stiffness was exactly two times greater than the lateral stiffness at each height, with an experimental error of less than 1%. A frozen image model was used to calculate the vertical and horizontal forces and stiffnesses, and reasonable agreement with the data occurred for vertical or horizontal movements of the permanent magnet less than several min from the field cooling position. We have investigated the effect of high temperature superconductor films deposited on substrates that are placed above bulk high temperature superconductors in an attempt to reduce rotational drag in superconducting bearings composed of a permanent magnet levitated above the film/bulk combination. According to the critical state model, hysteresis loss is inversely proportional to critical current density and because films typically have much higher critical current density than those of bulks, the film/bulk combination was expected to reduce rotational losses by at least one order of magnitude in the coefficient of friction, which in turn is a measure of the hysteresis losses. The experimental results showed that contrary to expectation, the rotational losses are increased by the film. Increasing losses from using a thin film turned attention to whether the thin film was shielding the varying magnetic field caused by the rotation of inhomogenous permanent magnet. For this reason, an ac coil was placed above the thin film HTS and the magnetic field on the other side of the film was measured with a pick-up coil. The experimental results showed that the thin film provides good shielding when the coil axis is perpendicular to the film surface whereas there is poor shielding when the coil is parallel to the surface. We have also investigated the vibration characteristic of the levitated permanent magnet over HTS for different cooling height and these properties were incorporated with vertical and lateral stiffnesses obtained in static measurements.

  20. Association between serum homocysteine and arterial stiffness in elderly: a community-based study

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Song; Bai, Yong-Yi; Luo, Lei-Ming; Xiao, Wen-Kai; Wu, Hong-Mei; Ye, Ping

    2014-01-01

    Background Arterial stiffness and homocysteine are both powerful predictors of cardiovascular disease, especially in older populations. Previous studies have investigated the association of homocysteine with arterial stiffness in human subjects, while the relationship between homocysteine and arterial stiffness in the elderly is still indefinite. The current study examined the association of homocysteine with arterial stiffness in Chinese community-based elderly persons. Methods We related serum levels of homocysteine to two measures of arterial stiffness (carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV) and carotid-radial PWV) in 780 participants (46.3% men, mean age 71.9 years (ranging 6596 years old)) from two communities of Beijing, China. Arterial stiffness was measured within two days of the time of biomarker measurement. Results In multiple-adjusted models, homocysteine levels were strongly associated with the carotid-femoral PWV (standardized ? = 0.13, P < 0.001), even after adjustment for classical risk factors of cardiovascular disease. The association is also stronger when the carotid-femoral PWV is elevated above normal, whereas no significant association with homocysteine was observed for carotid-radial PWV. Conclusions In Chinese elderly persons, serum homocysteine levels are associated with alterations of aortic stiffness. PMID:24748879

  1. A stiffness probe based on force and vision sensing for soft tissue diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Li, Jichun; Liu, Hongbin; Althoefer, Kaspar; Seneviratne, Lakmal D

    2012-01-01

    this paper introduces a novel approach of stiffness measurement based on force and vision sensing for tissue diagnosis. The developed probe is mainly composed of a force sensor and an image acquisition unit capable of obtaining contact area of probe-soft tissue interaction. By measuring the change of diameter of contact area during indentation test, the indentation depth can be determined. The stiffness of target soft tissue then can be evaluated by measuring indentation force and depth simultaneously. The probe can generalize a mechanical image to visualize the stiffness distribution for localization of abnormalities when sliding over soft tissue. The performance of the developed probe was validated by experiments on multiple materials including silicone phantoms and pork organs. The results show that the probe can perform stiffness measurement effectively when the probe indents or slides on the tissue surface. PMID:23366049

  2. Programmable variable stiffness 2D surface design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trabia, Sarah; Hwang, Taeseon; Yim, Woosoon

    2014-03-01

    Variable stiffness features can contribute to many engineering applications ranging from robotic joints to shock and vibration mitigation. In addition, variable stiffness can be used in the tactile feedback to provide the sense of touch to the user. A key component in the proposed device is the Biased Magnetorheological Elastomer (B-MRE) where iron particles within the elastomer compound develop a dipole interaction energy. A novel feature of this device is to introduce a field induced shear modulus bias via a permanent magnet which provides an offset with a current input to the electromagnetic control coil to change the compliance or modulus of a base elastomer in both directions (softer or harder). The B-MRE units can lead to the design of a variable stiffness surface. In this preliminary work, both computational and experimental results of the B-MRE are presented along with a preliminary design of the programmable variable stiffness surface design.

  3. Vascular stiffness in insulin resistance and obesity

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Guanghong; Aroor, Annayya R.; DeMarco, Vincent G.; Martinez-Lemus, Luis A.; Meininger, Gerald A.; Sowers, James R.

    2015-01-01

    Obesity, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes are associated with a substantially increased prevalence of vascular fibrosis and stiffness, with attendant increased risk of cardiovascular and chronic kidney disease. Although the underlying mechanisms and mediators of vascular stiffness are not well understood, accumulating evidence supports the role of metabolic and immune dysregulation related to increased adiposity, activation of the renin angiotensin aldosterone system, reduced bioavailable nitric oxide, increased vascular extracellular matrix (ECM) and ECM remodeling in the pathogenesis of vascular stiffness. This review will give a brief overview of the relationship between obesity, insulin resistance and increased vascular stiffness to provide a contemporary understanding of the proposed underlying mechanisms and potential therapeutic strategies. PMID:26321962

  4. Determination of ball bearing dynamic stiffness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beatty, R. F.; Rowan, B. F.

    1982-01-01

    The dynamic radial stiffness characteristics of rolling element bearings are currently determined by analytical methods that have not been experimentally verified. These bearing data are vital to rotating machinery design integrity because accurate critical speeds and rotor stability predictions are highly dependent on the bearing stiffness. A tester was designed capable of controlling the bearing axial preload, speed, and rotor unbalance. The rotor and support structures were constructed to permit critical speeds that are predominantly determined by a 57 mm test bearing. A curve of calculated critical speed versus stiffness was used to determine the actual bearing stiffness from the empirical data. The results of extensive testing are used to verify analytical predictions, increase confidence in existing bearing computer programs, and to serve as a data base for efforts to correct these programs.

  5. Clinical Significance of Pre-Transplant Arterial Stiffness and the Impact of Kidney Transplantation on Arterial Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyun Seon; Seung, Jaeho; Lee, Ju Hyun; Chung, Byung Ha; Yang, Chul Woo

    2015-01-01

    Background Arterial stiffness is closely associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) in end stage renal disease (ESRD) patients. However, the clinical significance of pre-transplant arterial stiffness and the impact of kidney transplantation (KT) on arterial stiffness have not yet been determined. Method We measured the brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV) before KT and one year after KT. We evaluated the potential utility of pre-transplant baPWV as a screening test to predict CVD. The impact of KT on progression of arterial stiffness was evaluated according to changes in baPWV after KT. The factors that influence the change of baPWV after KT were also examined. Result The mean value of pre-transplant baPWV was 1508 300 cm/s in ESRD patients; 93.4% had a higher baPWV value than healthy controls. Pre-transplant baPWV was higher in patients with CVD than in those without CVD (1800 440 vs. 1491 265 cm/s, p<0.05), and was a strong predictive factor of CVD (OR 1.003, p<0.05). The optimal cut-off value of baPWV for the detection of CVD was 1591 cm/s, and this value was an independent predictor of CVD in KT recipients (OR 6.3, p<0.05). The post-transplant baPWV was significantly decreased compared to that of pre-transplant rates (1418 235 vs. 1517 293 cm/s, p<0.05), and progression of arterial stiffness was not observed in 86.9% patients. Logistic regression analysis revealed that higher body mass index and the degree of increase in calcium levels were independent risk factors that affected baPWV after KT. Conclusions Evaluation of arterial stiffness with baPWV is a useful screening test for predicting CVD after KT, and KT is effective in preventing the progression of arterial stiffness in ESRD patients. PMID:26406607

  6. Stiff limb syndrome: a case report

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Introduction Stiff limb syndrome is a clinical feature of the stiff person syndrome, which is a rare and disabling neurologic disorder characterized by muscle rigidity and episodic spasms that involve axial and limb musculature. It is an autoimmune disorder resulting in a malfunction of aminobutyric acid mediated inhibitory networks in the central nervous system. We describe a patient diagnosed by neurological symptoms of stiff limb syndrome with a good outcome after treatment, and a review of the related literature. Case presentation A 49-year-old male patient presented with a progressive stiffness and painful spasms of his both legs resulting in a difficulty of standing up and walking. The diagnosis of stiff limb syndrome was supported by the dramatically positive response to treatment using diazepam 25 mg/day and baclofen 30 mg/day. Conclusion This clinical case highlights the importance of a therapeutic test to confirm the diagnosis of stiff limb syndrome especially when there is a high clinical suspicion with unremarkable electromyography PMID:20205913

  7. Arterial stiffness is higher in older adults with increased perceived fatigue and fatigability during walking.

    PubMed

    Gonzales, Joaquin U; Wiberg, Matthew; Defferari, Elizabeth; Proctor, David N

    2015-01-01

    We investigated whether central and/or peripheral arterial stiffness contributes to increased perceived fatigue during walking in mobility-intact older adults. Arterial stiffness of the common carotid artery and superficial femoral artery (SFA) was measured using Doppler-ultrasound in 45 community-dwelling women and men (60-78yrs). The change in perceived fatigue was measured after a fast-pace 400meter walk test. Adults that rated feeling more tired after walking (n=10) had higher SFA stiffness (p<0.01), but not carotid artery stiffness, than adults that reported feeling more energetic after walking (n=22). The change in perceived fatigue rating was normalized to energy expenditure during walking to determine perceived fatigability. Adults were divided into lower and higher perceived fatigability groups (n=22 per group). Carotid artery stiffness was not different between perceived fatigability groups after adjusting for age, sex, body fat, systolic blood pressure, fasting blood glucose, daily physical activity levels, and resting diameter. However, SFA stiffness was significantly elevated in the higher as compared to lower perceived fatigability group (?-index: 20.71.3 vs. 15.31.4U; p=0.02) after adjusting for the abovementioned variables. Moreover, stepwise regression identified SFA ?-index to be an independent predictor of perceived fatigability (r(2)=0.38, p<0.01). These results suggest that peripheral arterial stiffness is independently associated with perceived fatigue and fatigability in older adults. PMID:25482474

  8. Structural Response of Compression-Loaded, Tow-Placed, Variable Stiffness Panels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wu, K. Chauncey; Guerdal, Zafer; Starnes, James H., Jr.

    2002-01-01

    Results of an analytical and experimental study to characterize the structural response of two compression-loaded variable stiffness composite panels are presented and discussed. These variable stiffness panels are advanced composite structures, in which tows are laid down along precise curvilinear paths within each ply and the fiber orientation angle varies continuously throughout each ply. The panels are manufactured from AS4/977-3 graphite-epoxy pre-preg material using an advanced tow placement system. Both variable stiffness panels have the same layup, but one panel has overlapping tow bands and the other panel has a constant-thickness laminate. A baseline cross-ply panel is also analyzed and tested for comparative purposes. Tests performed on the variable stiffness panels show a linear prebuckling load-deflection response, followed by a nonlinear response to failure at loads between 4 and 53 percent greater than the baseline panel failure load. The structural response of the variable stiffness panels is also evaluated using finite element analyses. Nonlinear analyses of the variable stiffness panels are performed which include mechanical and thermal prestresses. Results from analyses that include thermal prestress conditions correlate well with measured variable stiffness panel results. The predicted response of the baseline panel also correlates well with measured results.

  9. Stiffness is more than just duration and severity: a qualitative exploration in people with rheumatoid arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Dures, Emma; Kirwan, John; Pollock, Jon; Baker, Gill; Edmunds, Avis; Hewlett, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    Objective. Stiffness is internationally recognized as an important indicator of inflammatory activity in RA but is poorly understood and difficult to measure. The aim of this study was to explore the experience of stiffness from the patient perspective. Methods. Semi-structured interviews conducted with 16 RA patients were analysed independently by researchers and pat.ient partners using inductive thematic analysis. Results. Six themes were identified. Part of having RA identified stiffness as a normal consequence of RA, perceived as associated with disease-related aspects such as fluctuating disease activity, other RA symptoms and disease duration. Local and widespread highlighted stiffness occurring not only in joints, but also over the whole body, being more widespread during the morning or flare. Linked to behaviour and environment illustrated factors that influence stiffness, including movement, medications and weather. Highly variable captured the fluctuating nature of stiffness within and between patients and in relation to temporality, duration and intensity. Impacts on daily life emphasized the effect of stiffness on a range of domains, including physical function, quality of life, psychological well-being, activities of daily living and participation in work and leisure activities. Requires self-management detailed self-management strategies targeting both the symptom and its consequences. Conclusion. Patients’ experiences of stiffness were varied, complex and not exclusive to the morning period. Importantly, stiffness was reported in terms of impact rather than the traditional measurement concepts of severity or duration. Based on these findings, further research is needed to develop a patient-centred measure that adequately reflects inflammatory activity. PMID:25231178

  10. Experimental exposure to diesel exhaust increases arterial stiffness in man

    PubMed Central

    Lundbck, Magnus; Mills, Nicholas L; Lucking, Andrew; Barath, Stefan; Donaldson, Ken; Newby, David E; Sandstrm, Thomas; Blomberg, Anders

    2009-01-01

    Introduction Exposure to air pollution is associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity, although the underlying mechanisms are unclear. Vascular dysfunction reduces arterial compliance and increases central arterial pressure and left ventricular after-load. We determined the effect of diesel exhaust exposure on arterial compliance using a validated non-invasive measure of arterial stiffness. Methods In a double-blind randomized fashion, 12 healthy volunteers were exposed to diesel exhaust (approximately 350 ?g/m3) or filtered air for one hour during moderate exercise. Arterial stiffness was measured using applanation tonometry at the radial artery for pulse wave analysis (PWA), as well as at the femoral and carotid arteries for pulse wave velocity (PWV). PWA was performed 10, 20 and 30 min, and carotid-femoral PWV 40 min, post-exposure. Augmentation pressure (AP), augmentation index (AIx) and time to wave reflection (Tr) were calculated. Results Blood pressure, AP and AIx were generally low reflecting compliant arteries. In comparison to filtered air, diesel exhaust exposure induced an increase in AP of 2.5 mmHg (p = 0.02) and in AIx of 7.8% (p = 0.01), along with a 16 ms reduction in Tr (p = 0.03), 10 minutes post-exposure. Conclusion Acute exposure to diesel exhaust is associated with an immediate and transient increase in arterial stiffness. This may, in part, explain the increased risk for cardiovascular disease associated with air pollution exposure. If our findings are confirmed in larger cohorts of susceptible populations, this simple non-invasive method of assessing arterial stiffness may become a useful technique in measuring the impact of real world exposures to combustion derived-air pollution. PMID:19284640

  11. Experimental procedure for the evaluation of tooth stiffness in spline coupling including angular misalignment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cur, Francesca; Mura, Andrea

    2013-11-01

    Tooth stiffness is a very important parameter in studying both static and dynamic behaviour of spline couplings and gears. Many works concerning tooth stiffness calculation are available in the literature, but experimental results are very rare, above all considering spline couplings. In this work experimental values of spline coupling tooth stiffness have been obtained by means of a special hexapod measuring device. Experimental results have been compared with the corresponding theoretical and numerical ones. Also the effect of angular misalignments between hub and shaft has been investigated in the experimental planning.

  12. Natural variation in embryo mechanics: gastrulation in Xenopus laevis is highly robust to variation in tissue stiffness.

    PubMed

    von Dassow, Michelangelo; Davidson, Lance A

    2009-01-01

    How sensitive is morphogenesis to the mechanical properties of embryos? To estimate an upper bound on the sensitivity of early morphogenetic movements to tissue mechanical properties, we assessed natural variability in the apparent stiffness among gastrula-stage Xenopus laevis embryos. We adapted micro-aspiration methods to make repeated, nondestructive measurements of apparent tissue stiffness in whole embryos. Stiffness varied by close to a factor of 2 among embryos within a single clutch. Variation between clutches was of similar magnitude. On the other hand, the direction of change in stiffness over the course of gastrulation was the same in all embryos and in all clutches. Neither pH nor salinity--two environmental factors we predicted could affect variability in nature--affected tissue stiffness. Our results indicate that gastrulation in X. laevis is robust to at least twofold variation in tissue stiffness. PMID:19097119

  13. Natural variation in embryo mechanics: gastrulation in Xenopus laevis is highly robust to variation in tissue stiffness

    PubMed Central

    von Dassow, Michelangelo; Davidson, Lance A.

    2009-01-01

    How sensitive is morphogenesis to the mechanical properties of embryos? To estimate an upper bound on the sensitivity of early morphogenetic movements to tissue mechanical properties, we assessed natural variability in the apparent stiffness among gastrula-stage Xenopus laevis embryos. We adapted micro-aspiration methods to make repeated, non-destructive measurements of apparent tissue stiffness in whole embryos. Stiffness varied by close to a factor of 2 among embryos within a single clutch. Variation between clutches was of similar magnitude. On the other hand, the direction of change in stiffness over the course of gastrulation was the same in all embryos and in all clutches. Neither pH nor salinity two environmental factors we predicted could affect variability in nature affected tissue stiffness. Our results indicate that gastrulation in X. laevis is robust to at least two-fold variation in tissue stiffness. PMID:19097119

  14. Ultrasonographic vascular mechanics to assess arterial stiffness: a review.

    PubMed

    Teixeira, Rogério; Vieira, Maria João; Gonçalves, Alexandra; Cardim, Nuno; Gonçalves, Lino

    2016-03-01

    In recent years, the role of arterial stiffness in the development of cardiovascular diseases has been explored more extensively. Local arterial stiffness may be gauged via ultrasound, measuring pulse transit time relative to changing vessel diameters and distending pressures. Recently, direct vessel-wall tracking systems have been devised based on new ultrasonographic methodologies, such as tissue Doppler imaging and speckle-tracking analysis-vascular mechanics. These advances have been evaluated in varying arterial distributions, are proved surrogates of pulse wave velocity, and are ascending in clinical importance. In the course of this review, we describe fundamental concepts and methodologies involved in ultrasound assessment of vascular mechanics. We also present relevant clinical studies and discuss the potential clinical utility of such diagnostic pursuits. PMID:26546802

  15. Human corneal epithelial cell response to substrate stiffness.

    PubMed

    Molladavoodi, Sara; Kwon, Hyock-Ju; Medley, John; Gorbet, Maud

    2015-01-01

    It has been reported that mechanical stimulus can affect cellular behavior. While induced differentiation in stem cells and proliferation and directional migration in fibroblasts are reported as responses to mechanical stimuli, little is known about the response of cells from the cornea. In the present study, we investigated whether changes in substrate stiffness (measured by elastic modulus) affected the behavior of human corneal epithelial cells (HCECs). Polyacrylamide substrates with different elastic moduli (compliant, medium and stiff) were prepared and HCECs were cultured on them. HCECs responses, including cell viability, apoptosis, intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) expression, integrin-?3?1 expression and changes in cytoskeleton structure (actin fibers) and migratory behavior, were studied. No statistically significant cell activation, as measured by ICAM-1 expression, was observed. However, on compliant substrates, a higher number of cells were found to be apoptotic and disrupted actin fibers were observed. Furthermore, cells displayed a statistically significant lower migration speed on compliant substrates when compared with the stiffer substrates. Thus, corneal epithelial cells respond to changes in substrate stiffness, which may have implications in the understanding and perhaps treatment of corneal diseases, such as keratoconus. PMID:25305512

  16. The cellular decapping activators LSm1, Pat1, and Dhh1 control the ratio of subgenomic to genomic Flock House virus RNAs.

    PubMed

    Gimnez-Barcons, Mireia; Alves-Rodrigues, Isabel; Jungfleisch, Jennifer; Van Wynsberghe, Priscilla M; Ahlquist, Paul; Dez, Juana

    2013-06-01

    Positive-strand RNA viruses depend on recruited host factors to control critical replication steps. Previously, it was shown that replication of evolutionarily diverse positive-strand RNA viruses, such as hepatitis C virus and brome mosaic virus, depends on host decapping activators LSm1-7, Pat1, and Dhh1 (J. Diez et al., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 97:3913-3918, 2000; A. Mas et al., J. Virol. 80:246 -251, 2006; N. Scheller et al., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 106:13517-13522, 2009). By using a system that allows the replication of the insect Flock House virus (FHV) in yeast, here we show that LSm1-7, Pat1, and Dhh1 control the ratio of subgenomic RNA3 to genomic RNA1 production, a key feature in the FHV life cycle mediated by a long-distance base pairing within RNA1. Depletion of LSM1, PAT1, or DHH1 dramatically increased RNA3 accumulation during replication. This was not caused by differences between RNA1 and RNA3 steady-state levels in the absence of replication. Importantly, coimmunoprecipitation assays indicated that LSm1-7, Pat1, and Dhh1 interact with the FHV RNA genome and the viral polymerase. By using a strategy that allows dissecting different stages of the replication process, we found that LSm1-7, Pat1, and Dhh1 did not affect the early replication steps of RNA1 recruitment to the replication complex or RNA1 synthesis. Furthermore, their function on RNA3/RNA1 ratios was independent of the membrane compartment, where replication occurs and requires ATPase activity of the Dhh1 helicase. Together, these results support that LSm1-7, Pat1, and Dhh1 control RNA3 synthesis. Their described function in mediating cellular mRNP rearrangements suggests a parallel role in mediating key viral RNP transitions, such as the one required to maintain the balance between the alternative FHV RNA1 conformations that control RNA3 synthesis. PMID:23536653

  17. Fluid damping and fluid stiffness of tube arrays in crossflow

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, S.S.; Zhu, S.; Jendrzejczyk, J.A.

    1994-06-01

    Motion-dependent fluid forces acting on a tube array were measured as a function of excitation frequency, excitation amplitude, and flow velocity. Fluid-damping and fluid-stiffness coefficients were obtained from measured motion-dependent fluid forces as a function of reduced flow velocity and excitation amplitude. The water channel and test setup provide a sound facility for obtaining key coefficients for fluidelastic instability of tube arrays in crossflow. Once the motion-dependent fluid-force coefficients have been measured, a reliable design guideline, based on the unsteady flow theory, can be developed for fluidelastic instability of tube arrays in crossflow.

  18. Development of a variable stiffness spring for adaptive vibration isolators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cronje, Johan M.; Heyns, P. S.; Theron, Nico J.; Loveday, Philip W.

    2004-07-01

    Variable stiffness springs allow vibration absorbers and isolators to adapt to changing operating conditions. This paper describes the development of such a spring. The spring was a compound leaf spring and variable stiffness was achieved by separating the two leaf springs using a wax actuator. In the selected design, each spring consisted of an outer (220mm in diameter) and an inner ring connected by three radial beams. A paraffin wax actuator was chosen to affect the separation of the leaf springs. This actuator consisted of a small copper cup containing paraffin wax. When the wax is heated, it changes from a solid to a liquid with an associated volume change that is used to drive an output shaft. A hot-air gun was used to heat and cool the wax actuator. It was found that the wax actuator could produce an 8mm separation of the springs, which increased the stiffness of the spring by 2.7 times, exceeding the typical requirement for adaptive absorbers and isolators. The loss factor, of the variable stiffness spring, was less than 0.12. The measured response times for the open-loop system were 82s and 109s for heating and cooling respectively. A linear sliding potentiometer was used to measure the spring separation and proportional and derivative feedback control was used to control the current supplied to the heating element thus reducing the response time to less than 30s for small step changes. Further improvement in response time could be achieved by more directly heating and cooling of the paraffin wax in the actuator.

  19. Biomechanical imaging of cell stiffness and prestress with subcellular resolution.

    PubMed

    Canovi?, Elizabeth P; Seidl, D Thomas; Polio, Samuel R; Oberai, Assad A; Barbone, Paul E; Stamenovi?, Dimitrije; Smith, Michael L

    2014-06-01

    Knowledge of cell mechanical properties, such as elastic modulus, is essential to understanding the mechanisms by which cells carry out many integrated functions in health and disease. Cellular stiffness is regulated by the composition, structural organization, and indigenous mechanical stress (or prestress) borne by the cytoskeleton. Current methods for measuring stiffness and cytoskeletal prestress of living cells necessitate either limited spatial resolution but with high speed, or spatial maps of the entire cell at the expense of long imaging times. We have developed a novel technique, called biomechanical imaging, for generating maps of both cellular stiffness and prestress that requires less than 30 s of interrogation time, but which provides subcellular spatial resolution. The technique is based on the ability to measure tractions applied to the cell while simultaneously observing cell deformation, combined with capability to solve an elastic inverse problem to find cell stiffness and prestress distributions. We demonstrated the application of this technique by carrying out detailed mapping of the shear modulus and cytoskeletal prestress distributions of 3T3 fibroblasts, making no assumptions regarding those distributions or the correlation between them. We also showed that on the whole cell level, the average shear modulus is closely associated with the average prestress, which is consistent with the data from the literature. Data collection is a straightforward procedure that lends itself to other biochemical/biomechanical interventions. Biomechanical imaging thus offers a new tool that can be used in studies of cell biomechanics and mechanobiology where fast imaging of cell properties and prestress is desired at subcellular resolution. PMID:24022327

  20. Arterial stiffness and cardiovascular events: The Framingham Heart Study

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Gary F.; Hwang, Shih-Jen; Vasan, Ramachandran S.; Larson, Martin G.; Pencina, Michael J.; Hamburg, Naomi M.; Vita, Joseph A.; Levy, Daniel; Benjamin, Emelia J.

    2010-01-01

    Background Various measures of arterial stiffness and wave reflection have been proposed as cardiovascular risk markers. Prior studies have not assessed relations of a comprehensive panel of stiffness measures to prognosis in the community. Methods and Results We used proportional hazards models to analyze first-onset major cardiovascular disease (CVD) events (myocardial infarction, unstable angina, heart failure or stroke) in relation to arterial stiffness (pulse wave velocity, PWV), wave reflection (augmentation index, carotid-brachial pressure amplification) and central pulse pressure in 2232 participants (mean age 63 years, 58% women) in the Framingham Heart Study. During median follow-up of 7.8 (range 0.2 to 8.9) years, 151 of 2232 participants (6.8%) had an event. In multivariable models adjusting for age, sex, systolic blood pressure, use of antihypertensive therapy, total and HDL cholesterol concentrations, smoking and presence of diabetes, higher aortic PWV was associated with a 48% increase in CVD risk (95% CI, 1.16 to 1.91 per SD, P=0.002). After adding PWV to a standard risk factor model, integrated discrimination improvement was 0.7% (95% CI, 0.05 to 1.3%, P<0.05). In contrast, augmentation index, central pulse pressure and pulse pressure amplification were not related to CVD outcomes in multivariable models. Conclusions Higher aortic stiffness assessed by PWV is associated with increased risk for a first cardiovascular event. Aortic PWV improves risk prediction when added to standard risk factors and may represent a valuable biomarker of CVD risk in the community. PMID:20083680

  1. Arterial Stiffness in Patients with Deep and Lobar Intracerebral Hemorrhage

    PubMed Central

    Guideri, Francesca; Di Donato, Ilaria; Tassi, Rossana; Marotta, Giovanna; Lo Giudice, Giuseppe; D'Andrea, Paolo; Martini, Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    Background and Purpose Intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) accounts for approximately 10% of stroke cases. Hypertension may play a role in the pathogenesis of ICH that occurs in the basal ganglia, thalamus, pons, and cerebellum, but not in that of lobar ICH. Hypertension contributes to decreased elasticity of arteries, thereby increasing the likelihood of rupture in response to acute elevation in intravascular pressure. This study aimed to evaluate arterial stiffness (using the arterial stiffness index [ASI]) in patients with deep (putaminal and thalamic) ICH in comparison with patients with lobar ICH. Methods We enrolled 64 patients (meanSD age: 69.310.7 years; 47 men and 17 women) among 73 who referred consecutively to our department for intraparenchymal hemorrhage and underwent brain computed tomography (CT) and cerebral angio-CT. In all the subjects, 24-hour heart rates and blood pressures were monitored. The linear regression slope of diastolic on systolic blood pressure was assumed as a global measure of arterial compliance, and its complement (1 minus the slope), ASI, has been considered as a measure of arterial stiffness. Results In the patients with deep ICH, ASI was significantly higher than in the patients with lobar ICH (0.640.19 vs. 0.530.17, P=0.04). Conclusions Our results suggest that in deep ICH, arterial stiffening represents a possible pathogenetic factor that modifies arterial wall properties and contributes to vascular rupture in response to intravascular pressure acute elevation. Therapeutic strategies that reduce arterial stiffness may potentially lower the incidence of deep hemorrhagic stroke. PMID:25328877

  2. Effect of acute resistance exercise on carotid artery stiffness and cerebral blood flow pulsatility

    PubMed Central

    Lefferts, Wesley K.; Augustine, Jacqueline A.; Heffernan, Kevin S.

    2014-01-01

    Arterial stiffness is associated with cerebral flow pulsatility. Arterial stiffness increases following acute resistance exercise (RE). Whether this acute RE-induced vascular stiffening affects cerebral pulsatility remains unknown. Purpose: To investigate the effects of acute RE on common carotid artery (CCA) stiffness and cerebral blood flow velocity (CBFv) pulsatility. Methods: Eighteen healthy men (22 1 yr; 23.7 0.5 kgm?2) underwent acute RE (5 sets, 5-RM bench press, 5 sets 10-RM bicep curls with 90 s rest intervals) or a time control condition (seated rest) in a randomized order. CCA stiffness (?-stiffness, Elastic Modulus (Ep)) and hemodynamics (pulsatility index, forward wave intensity, and reflected wave intensity) were assessed using a combination of Doppler ultrasound, wave intensity analysis and applanation tonometry at baseline and 3 times post-RE. CBFv pulsatility index was measured with transcranial Doppler at the middle cerebral artery (MCA). Results: CCA ?-stiffness, Ep and CCA pulse pressure significantly increased post-RE and remained elevated throughout post-testing (p < 0.05). No changes in MCA or CCA pulsatility index were observed (p > 0.05). There were significant increases in forward wave intensity post-RE (p < 0.05) but not reflected wave intensity (p > 0.05). Conclusion: Although acute RE increases CCA stiffness and pressure pulsatility, it does not affect CCA or MCA flow pulsatility. Increases in pressure pulsatility may be due to increased forward wave intensity and not pressure from wave reflections. PMID:24678301

  3. Arterial Stiffness as a Biomarker of Radiation-Induced Carotid Atherosclerosis.

    PubMed

    Gujral, Dorothy M; Shah, Benoy N; Chahal, Navtej S; Bhattacharyya, Sanjeev; Senior, Roxy; Harrington, Kevin J; Nutting, Christopher M

    2016-03-01

    Arterial stiffness is thought to be a precursor to atherosclerosis. Conventional arterial stiffness parameters as potential biomarkers of radiation-induced damage were investigated. Patients with head and neck cancer treated with radiotherapy ?2 years previously to one side of the neck were included. The unirradiated side was the internal control. Beta stiffness index (B) and elastic modulus (Ep) were used to assess arterial stiffness and were measured in proximal, mid, and distal common carotid artery (CCA) and compared with the corresponding unirradiated segments. Fifty patients (68% male; median age 58 years; interquartile range 50-62) were included. Mean standard deviation maximum doses to irradiated and unirradiated arteries were 53 13 and 1.9 3.7 Gy, respectively. Differences in B were not significant. Significant differences in Ep were demonstrated-proximal CCA: 1301 1223 versus 801 492 (P < .0001), mid CCA: 1064 818 versus 935.5 793 (P < .0001), and distal CCA: 1267 1084 versus 775.3 551.9 (P < .0001). Surgery had no impact on arterial stiffness. Arterial stiffness is increased in irradiated arteries, in keeping with radiation-induced damage. Prospective data may show an association between arterial stiffness and atherosclerosis in this setting. PMID:26045515

  4. Biphasic response of cell invasion to matrix stiffness in 3-dimensional biopolymer networks

    PubMed Central

    Lang, Nadine R.; Skodzek, Kai; Hurst, Sebastian; Mainka, Astrid; Steinwachs, Julian; Schneider, Julia; Aifantis, Katerina E.; Fabry, Ben

    2015-01-01

    When cells come in contact with an adhesive matrix, they begin to spread and migrate with a speed that depends on the stiffness of the extracellular matrix. On a flat surface, migration speed decreases with matrix stiffness mainly due to an increased stability of focal adhesions. In a 3-dimensional (3D) environment, cell migration is thought to be additionally impaired by the steric hindrance imposed by the surrounding matrix. For porous 3D biopolymer networks such as collagen gels, however, the effect of matrix stiffness on cell migration is difficult to separate from effects of matrix pore size and adhesive ligand density, and is therefore unknown. Here we used glutaraldehyde as a crosslinker to increase the stiffness of self-assembled collagen biopolymer networks independently of collagen concentration or pore size. Breast carcinoma cells were seeded onto the surface of 3D collagen gels, and the invasion depth was measured after 3 days of culture. Cell invasion in gels with pore sizes larger than 5 ?m increased with higher gel stiffness, whereas invasion in gels with smaller pores decreased with higher gel stiffness. These data show that 3D cell invasion is enhanced by higher matrix stiffness, opposite to cell behavior in 2D, as long as the pore size does not fall below a critical value where it causes excessive steric hindrance. These findings may be important for optimizing the recellularization of soft tissue implants or for the design of 3D invasion models in cancer research. PMID:25462839

  5. Ankle Bracing and the Neuromuscular Factors Influencing Joint Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Zinder, Steven M; Granata, Kevin P; Shultz, Sandra J; Gansneder, Bruce M

    2009-01-01

    Context: Health care professionals commonly prescribe external stabilization to decrease the incidence and severity of ankle sprains. The mechanism for this decrease is not clearly understood. Examining the effects of ankle bracing on biomechanical stability and influencing factors may provide important information regarding the neuromuscular effects of bracing. Objective: To study the effects of 2 different ankle braces on the neuromuscular factors influencing ankle stiffness. Design: Mixed-model repeated-measures design. Setting: Research laboratory. Patients or Other Participants: Twenty-eight physically active participants composing 2 groups: 14 with unilateral functional ankle instability (age ?=? 26.19 6.46 years, height ?=? 166.07 12.90 cm, mass ?=? 69.90 13.46 kg) and 14 with bilaterally stable ankles (age ?=? 23.76 5.82 years, height ?=? 174.00 11.67 cm, mass ?=? 68.60 13.12 kg). Intervention(s): Participants were fitted with surface electromyography electrodes over the peroneus longus, peroneus brevis, tibialis anterior, and soleus muscles. Each participant received transient motion oscillations to his or her ankle on a custom-built medial-lateral swaying cradle in each of 3 conditions: no ankle brace (NB), lace-up brace (LU), and semirigid brace (SR). Main Outcome Measure(s): Ankle stiffness as measured by the cradle and preactivation levels (percentage of maximal voluntary isometric contraction) of the 4 test muscles. Results: Stiffness levels increased across brace conditions (NB ?=? 24.79 6.59 Nm/rad, LU ?=? 28.29 7.05 Nm/rad, SR ?=? 33.22 8.78 Nm/rad; F2,52 ?=? 66.185, P < .001). No differences were found between groups for rotational stiffness (stable ?=? 27.36 6.17 Nm/rad, unstable ?=? 30.18 8.21 Nm/rad; F1,26 ?=? 1.084, P ?=? .307). Preactivation levels did not change for any of the tested muscles with the application of an ankle brace (F2,52 ?=? 1.326, P ?=? .275). Conclusions: The increase in ankle rotational stiffness with the addition of an ankle brace and the lack of any demonstrable neuromuscular changes suggested ankle braces passively contributed to the stability of the system. PMID:19593418

  6. Hyperemia-Related Changes in Arterial Stiffness: Comparison between Pulse Wave Velocity and Stiffness Index in the Vascular Reactivity Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Torrado, Juan; Bia, Daniel; Zócalo, Yanina; Farro, Ignacio; Farro, Federico; Armentano, Ricardo L.

    2012-01-01

    Carotid-to-radial pulse wave velocity (PWVcr) has been proposed to evaluate endothelial function. However, the measurement of PWVcr is not without limitations. A new simple approach could have wide application. Stiffness index (SI) is obtained by analysis of the peripheral pulse wave and gives reproducible information about stiffness of large arteries. This study assessed the effects of hyperemia on SI and compared it with PWVcr in 14 healthy subjects. Both were measured at rest and during 8 minutes after ischemia. SI temporal course was determined. At 1 minute, SI and PWVcr decreased (5.58 ± 0.24 to 5.34 ± 0.23 m/s, P < 0.05; 7.8 ± 1.0 to 7.2 ± 0.9 m/s; P < 0.05, resp.). SI was positively related to PWVcr in baseline (r = 0.62 , P < 0.05), at 1 minute (r = 0.79, P < 0.05), and during the whole experimental session (r = 0.52, P < 0.05). Conclusion. Hyperemia significantly decreases SI in healthy subjects. SI was related to PWVcr and could be used to facilitate the evaluation of hyperemia-related changes in arterial stiffness. PMID:22919496

  7. Hyper-damping properties of a stiff and stable linear oscillator with a negative stiffness element

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Antoniadis, I.; Chronopoulos, D.; Spitas, V.; Koulocheris, D.

    2015-06-01

    A simple, stiff, statically and dynamically stable linear oscillator incorporating a negative stiffness element is used as a template to provide a generic theoretical basis for a novel vibration damping and isolation concept. This oscillator is designed to present the same overall static stiffness, the same mass and to use the same damping element as a reference classical linear SDoF oscillator. Thus, no increase of the structure mass or the viscous damping is needed, as in the case of a traditional linear isolator, no decrease of the overall structure stiffness is required as in the case of 'zero-stiffness' oscillators with embedded negative stiffness elements. The difference from these two templates consists entirely in the proper redistribution and reallocation of the stiffness and the damping elements of the system. Once such an oscillator is optimally designed, it is shown to exhibit an extraordinary apparent damping ratio, which is even several orders of magnitude higher than that of the original SDoF system, especially in cases where the original damping of the SDoF system is extremely low. This extraordinary damping behavior is a result of the phase difference between the positive and the negative stiffness elastic forces, which is in turn a consequence of the proper redistribution of the stiffness and the damping elements. This fact ensures that an adequate level of elastic forces exists throughout the entire frequency range, able to counteract the inertial and the excitation forces. Consequently, a resonance phenomenon, which is inherent in the original linear SDoF system, cannot emerge in the proposed oscillator. The optimal parameter selection for the design of the negative stiffness oscillator is discussed. To further exhibit the advantages that such a design can generate, the suggested oscillator is implemented within a periodic acoustic metamaterial structure, inducing a radical increase in the damping of the propagating acoustic waves. The concept may find numerous technological applications, either as traditional vibration isolators or within advanced composite materials and metamaterials.

  8. Nanoscale directional motion towards regions of stiffness.

    PubMed

    Chang, Tienchong; Zhang, Hongwei; Guo, Zhengrong; Guo, Xingming; Gao, Huajian

    2015-01-01

    How to induce nanoscale directional motion via some intrinsic mechanisms pertaining to a nanosystem remains a challenge in nanotechnology. Here we show via molecular dynamics simulations that there exists a fundamental driving force for a nanoscale object to move from a region of lower stiffness toward one of higher stiffness on a substrate. Such nanoscale directional motion is induced by the difference in effective van der Waals potential energy due to the variation in stiffness of the substrate; i.e., all other conditions being equal, a nanoscale object on a stiffer substrate has lower van der Waals potential energy. This fundamental law of nanoscale directional motion could lead to promising routes for nanoscale actuation and energy conversion. PMID:25615480

  9. End-on soft x ray imaging of Field-Reversed Configurations (FRCs) on the Field-Reversal-C (FRX-C)/Large Scale Modification (LSM) experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taggart, D. P.; Gribble, R. J.; Bailey, A. D., III; Sugimoto, S.

    Recently, a prototype soft x ray pinhole camera was fielded on FRX-C/LSM at Los Alamos and TRX at Spectra Technology. The soft x ray FRC images obtained using this camera stand out in high contrast to their surroundings. It was particularly useful for studying the FRC during and shortly after formation when, at certain operating conditions, flute-like structures at the edge and internal structures of the FRC were observed which other diagnostics could not resolve. Building on this early experience, a new soft x ray pinhole camera was installed on FRX-C/LSM, which permits more rapid data acquisition and briefer exposures. It will be used to continue studying FRC formation and to look for internal structure later in time which could be a signature of instability. The initial operation of this camera is summarized.

  10. The influence of bearing stiffness on the vibration properties of statically overdetermined gearboxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Razpotnik, M.; Bischof, T.; Boltežar, M.

    2015-09-01

    In the design process of every modern car, the appropriate acoustic behaviour of each integral part is of great importance. This is particularly so for gearboxes. The stiffness of a rolling-element bearing is one of the main contributors to the transmission of vibrations from the interior of the gearbox to the housing. Many methods have been proposed to determine the bearing stiffness; this stiffness is related to the load in a nonlinear way. In this article, a new method for defining the proper bearing stiffness of statically overdetermined gearboxes is proposed. To achieve this an iterative process is conducted, with an initial guess for the loads on the bearings, which provides the initial values for their stiffnesses. The calculated stiffnesses are then inserted into a finite element method (FEM) model of a gearbox, where the new load vectors on the bearings are calculated. The described process runs until the convergence of the loads on the bearings is reached. Afterwards, the frequency-response functions (FRFs) are numerically calculated. As a reference point for our calculations, the measured FRFs are obtained. The measurements were performed on a simple, but statically overdetermined, gearbox with the option for moment adjustments between the two shafts. The calculated results in the form of FRFs are compared with the measurements.

  11. Aortic Stiffness, Blood Pressure Progression, and Incident Hypertension

    PubMed Central

    Kaess, Bernhard M.; Rong, Jian; Larson, Martin G.; Hamburg, Naomi M.; Vita, Joseph A.; Levy, Daniel; Benjamin, Emelia J.; Vasan, Ramachandran S.; Mitchell, Gary F.

    2013-01-01

    Context Vascular stiffness increases with advancing age and is a major risk factor for age-related morbidity and mortality. Vascular stiffness and blood pressure pulsatility are related; however, temporal relationships between vascular stiffening and blood pressure elevation have not been fully delineated. Objective To examine temporal relationships among vascular stiffness, central hemodynamics, microvascular function, and blood pressure progression. Design, Setting, and Participants Longitudinal community-based cohort study conducted in Framingham, Massachusetts. The present investigation is based on the 2 latest examination cycles (cycle 7: 19982001; cycle 8: 20052008 [last visit: January 25, 2008]) of the Framingham Offspring study (recruited: 19711975). Temporal relationships among blood pressure and 3 measures of vascular stiffness and pressure pulsatility derived from arterial tonometry (carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity [CFPWV], forward wave amplitude [FWA], and augmentation index) were examined over a 7-year period in 1759 participants (mean [SD] age: 60 [9] years; 974 women). Main Outcome Measures The primary outcomes were blood pressure and incident hypertension during examination cycle 8. The secondary outcomes were CFPWV, FWA, and augmentation index during examination cycle 8. Results In a multivariable-adjusted regression model, higher FWA (?, 1.3 [95% CI, 0.52.1] mm Hg per 1 SD; P=.002) and higher CFPWV (?, 1.5 [95% CI, 0.52.6] mm Hg per 1 SD; P=.006) during examination cycle 7 were jointly associated with systolic blood pressure during examination cycle 8. Similarly, in a model that included systolic and diastolic blood pressure and additional risk factors during examination cycle 7, higher FWA (odds ratio [OR], 1.6 [95% CI, 1.32.0] per 1 SD; P < .001), augmentation index (OR, 1.7 [95% CI, 1.42.0] per 1 SD; P < .001), and CFPWV (OR, 1.3 [95% CI, 1.01.6] per 1 SD; P=.04) were associated with incident hypertension during examination cycle 8 (338 cases [32%] in 1048 participants without hypertension during examination cycle 7). Conversely, blood pressure during examination cycle 7 was not associated with CFPWV during examination cycle 8. Higher resting brachial artery flow (OR, 1.23 [95% CI, 1.041.46]) and lower flow-mediated dilation (OR, 0.80 [95% CI, 0.670.96]) during examination cycle 7 were associated with incident hypertension (in models that included blood pressure and tonometry measures collected during examination cycle 7). Conclusion In this cohort, higher aortic stiffness, FWA, and augmentation index were associated with higher risk of incident hypertension; however, initial blood pressure was not independently associated with risk of progressive aortic stiffening. PMID:22948697

  12. Arterial Stiffness and Wave Reflection: Biomarkers of Cardiovascular Risk

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Gary F.

    2009-01-01

    Arterial stiffness and excessive pressure pulsatility have emerged as important risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Arterial stiffness increases with age and in the presence of traditional cardiovascular disease risk factors, such as hypertension, diabetes and lipid disorders. Pathologic stiffening of large arteries with advancing age and risk factor exposure predominantly involves the elastic aorta and carotid arteries, whereas stiffness changes are relatively limited in muscular arteries. Aortic stiffening is associated with increased pulse wave velocity and pulse pressure, which are related but distinct measures of the pulsatile energy content of the pressure waveform. A dramatic increase in pulsatile energy content of pressure and flow waves in the arterial system places considerable pulsatile stress on the heart, large arteries and distal circulation. Large artery stiffening is associated with abnormalities in microvascular structure and function that may contribute to tissue damage, particularly in susceptible high flow organs such as the brain and kidneys. This brief review summarizes results of recent research on risk factors for and adverse effects of large artery stiffening. PMID:20161241

  13. Conformational Analysis of Stiff Chiral Polymers with End-Constraints

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jin Seob; Chirikjian, Gregory S.

    2010-01-01

    We present a Lie-group-theoretic method for the kinematic and dynamic analysis of chiral semi-flexible polymers with end constraints. The first is to determine the minimum energy conformations of semi-flexible polymers with end constraints, and the second is to perform normal mode analysis based on the determined minimum energy conformations. In this paper, we use concepts from the theory of Lie groups and principles of variational calculus to model such polymers as inextensible or extensible chiral elastic rods with coupling between twisting and bending stiffnesses, and/or between twisting and extension stiffnesses. This method is general enough to include any stiffness and chirality parameters in the context of elastic filament models with the quadratic elastic potential energy function. As an application of this formulation, the analysis of DNA conformations is discussed. We demonstrate our method with examples of DNA conformations in which topological properties such as writhe, twist, and linking number are calculated from the results of the proposed method. Given these minimum energy conformations, we describe how to perform the normal mode analysis. The results presented here build both on recent experimental work in which DNA mechanical properties have been measured, and theoretical work in which the mechanics of non-chiral elastic rods has been studied. PMID:20198114

  14. Helical growth trajectories in plant roots interacting with stiff barriers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerbode, Sharon; Noar, Roslyn; Harrison, Maria

    2009-03-01

    Plant roots successfully navigate heterogeneous soil environments with varying nutrient and water concentrations, as well as a variety of stiff obstacles. While it is thought that the ability of roots to penetrate into a stiff lower soil layer is important for soil erosion, little is known about how a root actually responds to a rigid interface. We have developed a laser sheet imaging technique for recording the 3D growth dynamics of plant roots interacting with stiff barriers. We find that a root encountering an angled interface does not grow in a straight line along the surface, but instead follows a helical trajectory. These experiments build on the pioneering studies of roots grown on a tilted 2D surface, which reported ``root waving,'' a similar curved pattern thought to be caused by the root's sensitivity to both gravity and the rigid surface on which it is grown. Our measurements extend these results to the more physiologically relevant case of 3D growth, where the spiral trajectory can be altered by tuning the relative strengths of the gravity and touch stimuli, providing some intuition for the physical mechanism driving it.

  15. Normalized stiffness ratios for mechanical characterization of isotropic acoustic foams.

    PubMed

    Sahraoui, Sohbi; Brouard, Bruno; Benyahia, Lazhar; Parmentier, Damien; Geslain, Alan

    2013-12-01

    This paper presents a method for the mechanical characterization of isotropic foams at low frequency. The objective of this study is to determine the Young's modulus, the Poisson's ratio, and the loss factor of commercially available foam plates. The method is applied on porous samples having square and circular sections. The main idea of this work is to perform quasi-static compression tests of a single foam sample followed by two juxtaposed samples having the same dimensions. The load and displacement measurements lead to a direct extraction of the elastic constants by means of normalized stiffness and normalized stiffness ratio which depend on Poisson's ratio and shape factor. The normalized stiffness is calculated by the finite element method for different Poisson ratios. The no-slip boundary conditions imposed by the loading rigid plates create interfaces with a complex strain distribution. Beforehand, compression tests were performed by means of a standard tensile machine in order to determine the appropriate pre-compression rate for quasi-static tests. PMID:25669274

  16. Anterior Knee Stiffness Changes in Laxity Responders Versus Nonresponders Across the Menstrual Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Schmitz, Randy J; Shultz, Sandra J

    2013-01-01

    Context Although changes in anterior knee laxity (AKL) across the menstrual cycle have been reported, the effects of cyclic knee laxity changes on the underlying characteristics of the load-displacement (stiffness) curve generated during anterior loading of the tibia relative to the femur are relatively unknown. Objective To describe the anterior load-displacement curve during anterior loading of the tibia relative to the femur using incremental stiffnesses and to compare underlying stiffness measures between days of the cycle when AKL is at its minimum and maximum. Design Descriptive laboratory study. Setting University laboratory. Patients or Other Participants Fifty-seven recreationally active women. Main Outcome Measure(s) Anterior knee laxity and 6 incremental stiffness measures (N/mm) were obtained with an instrumented knee arthrometer on days 16 of menses and days 08 postovulation during 2 consecutive menstrual cycles. Participants were then classified in tertiles based on the maximum change (difference between maximum and minimum) in AKL, and incremental stiffness was compared on days of minimum versus maximum laxity between the lowest (<1.24 mm cyclic laxity change = laxity nonresponders [n = 19]) and highest (>1.75 mm cyclic laxity change = laxity responders [n = 19]) tertiles. Results All participants displayed decreasing stiffness initially (020 N > 2040 N and 4060 N), followed by incrementally increasing stiffness (4060 N < 6080 N < 80100 N < 100130 N) (P ? .05). Responders demonstrated decreased stiffness between the days of minimum and maximum AKL at the 10130-N increment versus the 020-N and 2040-N increments (P ? .05); nonresponders had no change in stiffness. Conclusions Participants who experienced larger magnitudes of cyclic changes in AKL also experienced decreases in terminal (100130 N) stiffness during anterior knee joint loading. Decreases in incremental stiffness at higher anterior directed loads may adversely affect passive restraint systems, resulting in altered arthrokinematics during functional activity. PMID:23672324

  17. A new strategy for stiffness evaluation of sheet metal parts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Q.; Volk, W.; Dster, A.; Rank, E.

    2011-08-01

    In the automotive industry, surfaces of styling models are shaped very often in physical models. For example, in the styling process of a car body important design work is realized by clay models and the resulting geometry information typically comes from optical scans. The scanned data is given in the form of point clouds which is then utilized in the virtual planning process for engineering work, e.g. to evaluate the load-carrying capacity. This is an important measure for the stiffness of the car body panels. In this contribution, the following two issues are discussed: what is the suitable geometric representation of the stiffness of the car body and how it is computed if only discrete point clouds exist. In the first part, the suitable geometric representation is identified by constructing continuous CAD models with different geometric parameters, e.g. Gaussian curvature and mean curvature. The stiffness of models is then computed in LS-DYNA and the influence of different geometric parameters is presented based on the simulation result. In the second part, the point clouds from scanned data, rather than continuous CAD models, are directly utilized to estimate the Gaussian curvature, which is normally derived from continuous surfaces. The discrete Gauss-Bonnet algorithm is applied to estimate the Gaussian curvature of the point clouds and the sensitivity of the algorithm with respect to the mesh quality is analyzed. In this way, the stiffness evaluation process in an early stage can be accelerated since the transformation from discrete data to continuous CAD data is labor-intensive. The discrete Gauss-Bonnet algorithm is finally applied to a sheet metal model of the BMW 3 series.

  18. Passive stiffness of rat skeletal muscle undernourished during fetal development

    PubMed Central

    Toscano, Ana Elisa; Ferraz, Karla Mnica; de Castro, Raul Manhes; Canon, Francis

    2010-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: The aim of the study was to investigate the effect of fetal undernutrition on the passive mechanical properties of skeletal muscle of weaned and young adult rats. INTRODUCTION: A poor nutrition supply during fetal development affects physiological functions of the fetus. From a mechanical point of view, skeletal muscle can be also characterized by its resistance to passive stretch. METHODS: Male Wistar rats were divided into two groups according to their mother's diet during pregnancy: a control group (mothers fed a 17% protein diet) and an isocaloric low?protein group (mothers fed a 7.8% protein diet). At birth, all mothers received a standardized meal ad libitum. At the age of 25 and 90days, the soleus muscle and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscles were removed in order to test the passive mechanical properties. A first mechanical test consisted of an incremental stepwise extension test using fast velocity stretching (500mm/s) enabling us to measure, for each extension stepwise, the dynamic stress (?d) and the steady stress (?s). A second test consisted of a slow velocity stretch in order to calculate normalized stiffness and tangent modulus from the stressstrain relationship. RESULTS: The results for the mechanical properties showed an important increase in passive stiffness in both the soleus and EDL muscles in weaned rat. In contrast, no modification was observed in young adult rats. CONCLUSIONS: The increase in passive stiffness in skeletal muscle of weaned rat submitted to intrauterine undernutrition it is most likely due to changes in muscle passive stiffness. PMID:21340228

  19. Elastic stiffness of a Skyrmion crystal.

    PubMed

    Nii, Y; Kikkawa, A; Taguchi, Y; Tokura, Y; Iwasa, Y

    2014-12-31

    We observe the elastic stiffness and ultrasonic absorption of a Skyrmion crystal in the chiral-lattice magnet MnSi. The Skyrmion crystal lattice exhibits a stiffness 3 orders of magnitude smaller than that of the atomic lattice of MnSi, being as soft as the flux line lattice in type-II superconductors. The observed anisotropic elastic responses are consistent with the cylindrical shape of the Skyrmion spin texture. Phenomenological analysis reveals that the spin-orbit coupling is responsible for the emergence of anisotropic elasticity in the Skyrmion lattice. PMID:25615379

  20. The stiff shoulder; A case study.

    PubMed

    Hall, Kevin; Mercer, Christopher

    2015-12-01

    Clinicians working in outpatient departments and advanced practitioner clinics frequently encounter patients presenting with multidirectional stiffness of the glenohumeral joint. This case report describes the assessment and treatment of a patient presenting with glenohumeral joint stiffness and describes the possible differential diagnoses. The evidence base used to inform the decision-making process is presented and the use of radiology that helped to ultimately establish the diagnosis is discussed. The clinical reasoning process of applying knowledge and experience to identify patient problems and to make appropriate decisions that result in positive patient outcomes is discussed. The case report highlights the importance of early diagnosis. PMID:26096901

  1. Land surface model (LSM version 1.0) for ecological, hydrological, and atmospheric studies: Technical description and user`s guide. Technical note

    SciTech Connect

    Bonan, G.B.

    1996-01-01

    This technical note describes version 1 of the LSM land surface model. In this model, land surface processes are described in terms of biophysical fluxes (latent heat, sensible heat, momentum, reflected solar radiation, emitted longwave radiation) and biochemical fluxes (CO2) that depend on the ecological and hydrologic state of the land. Consequently, ecological and hydrological sub-models are needed to simulate temporal changes in terrestrial biomass and water.

  2. The 5' and 3' domains of yeast U6 snRNA: Lsm proteins facilitate binding of Prp24 protein to the U6 telestem region.

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Daniel E; Stevens, Scott W; Abelson, John

    2002-01-01

    The 5' and 3' domains of yeast U6 snRNA contain sequences that are thought to be important for binding to Prp24 and Lsm proteins. By extensive mutational analysis of yeast U6 snRNA, we confirmed that the 3' terminal uridine tract of U6 snRNA is important for U6 binding to Lsm proteins in yeast. Binding of Prp24 protein to U6 RNA is dependent on or is strongly enhanced by U6 binding of Lsm proteins. This supports a model for U6 snRNP assembly in which U6 RNA binds to the Lsm2-8 core prior to binding Prp24 protein. Using compensatory base-pairing analysis, we show that at least half of the recently identified U6 telestem as well as a nucleotide sequence in the other half of the telestem are important for binding of U6 RNA to Prp24 protein. Surprisingly, disruption of base pairing in the unconfirmed half of the telestem enhanced U6-Prp24 binding. Truncation of the entire 3' terminal domain or nearly the entire 5' terminal domain of yeast U6 allowed for detectable levels of splicing to proceed in vitro. In addition to gaining knowledge of the function of the 5' and 3' domains of yeast U6, our results help define the minimal set of requirements for yeast U6 RNA function in splicing. We present a revised secondary structural model of yeast U6 snRNA in free U6 snRNPs. PMID:12212846

  3. Quantification of Myocardial Stiffness using Magnetic Resonance Elastography in Right Ventricular Hypertrophy: Initial Feasibility in Dogs

    PubMed Central

    da Silveira, Juliana S; Scansen, Brian A; Wassenaar, Peter A; Raterman, Brian; Eleswarpu, Chethan; Jin, Ning; Mo, Xiaokui; White, Richard D; Bonagura, John D; Kolipaka, Arunark

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Myocardial stiffness is an important determinant of cardiac function and is currently invasively and indirectly assessed by catheter angiography. This study aims to demonstrate the feasibility of quantifying right ventricular (RV) stiffness noninvasively using cardiac magnetic resonance elastography (CMRE) in dogs with severe congenital pulmonary valve stenosis (PVS) causing RV hypertrophy, and compare it to remote myocardium in the left ventricle (LV). Additionally, correlations between stiffness and selected pathophysiologic indicators from transthoracic echocardiography (TTE) and cardiac magnetic resonance imaging were explored. Methods In-vivo CMRE was performed on nine dogs presenting severe congenital PVS using a 1.5T MRI scanner. T1-MOLLI, T2-prepared-bSSFP, gated-cine GRE-MRE and LGE (PSIR) sequences were used to acquire a basal short-axis slice. RV and LV-free-wall (FW) stiffness measurements were compared against each other and also correlated to ventricular mass, RV and LV FW thickness, T1 and T2 relaxation times, and extracellular volume fraction (ECV). Peak transpulmonary pressure gradient and myocardial strain were also acquired on eight dogs by TTE and correlated to RV-FW systolic stiffness. Potential correlations were evaluated by Spearmans rho (rs). Results RV-FW stiffness was found to be significantly higher than the LV-FW stiffness both during end-systole (ES) (p=0.002) and end-diastole (ED) (p=0.029). Significant correlations were observed between RV-FW ES and LV-FW ED stiffness versus ECV (rs=0.75; p-value=0.05). Non-significant moderate correlations were found between LV-FW ES (rs=0.54) and RV-FW ED (rs=0.61) versus ECV. Furthermore, non-significant correlations were found between RV or LV-FW stiffness and the remaining variables (rs<0.54; p-value>0.05). Conclusion This study demonstrates the feasibility of determining RV stiffness. The positive correlations between stiffness and ECV might indicate some interdependence between stiffness and myocardial extracellular matrix alterations. However, further studies are warranted to validate our initial observations. PMID:26471513

  4. The Effects of Barefoot and Shod Running on Limb and Joint Stiffness Characteristics in Recreational Runners.

    PubMed

    Sinclair, Jonathan; Atkins, Stephen; Taylor, Paul J

    2016-01-01

    The authors aimed to determine the effects of barefoot (BF) and several commercially available barefoot-inspired (BFIS) footwear models on limb and joint stiffness characteristics compared with conventional footwear (CF). Fifteen male participants ran over a force platform at 4.0m.s(-1), in BF, BFIS, and CF conditions. Measures of limb and joint stiffness were calculated for each footwear. The results indicate that limb and knee stiffness were greater in BF and minimalist BFIS than in CF. CF and more structured BFIS were associated with a greater ankle stiffness compared with BF and minimalist BFIS. These findings serve to provide further insight into the susceptibility of runners to different injury mechanisms as a function of footwear. PMID:25978696

  5. The effects of thermal cycling on matrix cracking and stiffness changes in composite tubes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cohen, D.; Hyer, M. W.; Tompkins, S. S.

    1984-01-01

    The study investigated the accumulation of transverse matrix cracks and the resultant loss of torsional, extensional, and bending stiffnesses in 8 layer 0.5 in. diameter crossply tubes subjected to thermal cycling. The tubes were graphite-epoxy and the temperature range during cycling was -250 to 200 F. The effect of fiber and matrix properties was investigated through the use of T300 and P75S fibers and 934 and CE339 resins. The study considered 0, 10, 50, 100, 300, and 500 thermal cycles. Photomicrographs, X-rays, and edge replication were used to evaluate cracking. Special loading fixtures were used to measure stiffness changes. An important finding was that for the tubes studied, even with extensive cracking, the bending and extensional stiffnesses were not affected. The torsional stiffness, however, was strongly affected.

  6. Ambulatory Arterial Stiffness Index and circadian blood pressure variability.

    PubMed

    Bahrainwala, Jehan; Patel, Ami; Diaz, Keith M; Veerabhadrappa, Praveen; Cohen, Debbie L; Cucchiara, Andrew; Townsend, Raymond R

    2015-09-01

    The manner in which the circulation accommodates each heartbeat may underlie blood pressure (BP) variability. We used the Ambulatory Arterial Stiffness Index (AASI), which reflects this ventricular-vascular interaction, in untreated individuals with prehypertension and Stage 1 hypertension to evaluate two different measures of BP variability using the brachial pulse pressure (PP) obtained over 24hours. We enrolled 64 untreated adults with systolic BP between 130-159mmHg and diastolic values of <100mmHg who underwent 24-hour ambulatory BP monitoring with calculation of 24-hour AASIs. Variability in brachial PP was determined using the standard deviation of the measurements over 24hours and the average real variability. The 24-hour AASI correlated with both measures of 24-hour PP variability (P<.001 for both). Subdividing the 24-hour stiffness index into daytime and nighttime components showed modest differences in their relationship to PP variability, with the daytime being significantly different from 24-hour AASI and the standard deviation of the brachial PP consistently having a higher correlation to the AASI when compared with the average real variability. These observations may be useful to understand differences in variability measures of BP measurements, such as PP, to measures like the AASI as reported in longitudinal studies. PMID:26260424

  7. Comparative study of a muscle stiffness sensor and electromyography and mechanomyography under fatigue conditions.

    PubMed

    Han, Hyonyoung; Jo, Sungho; Kim, Jung

    2015-07-01

    This paper proposes the feasibility of a stiffness measurement for muscle contraction force estimation under muscle fatigue conditions. Bioelectric signals have been widely studied for the estimation of the contraction force for physical human-robot interactions, but the correlation between the biosignal and actual motion is decreased under fatigue conditions. Muscle stiffness could be a useful contraction force estimator under fatigue conditions because it measures the same physical quantity as the muscle contraction that generates the force. Electromyography (EMG), mechanomyography (MMG), and a piezoelectric resonance-based active muscle stiffness sensor were used to analyze the biceps brachii under isometric muscle fatigue conditions with reference force sensors at the end of the joint. Compared to EMG and MMG, the change in the stiffness signal was smaller (p < 0.05) in the invariable contraction force generation test until failure. In addition, in the various contraction level force generation tests, the stiffness signal under the fatigue condition changed <10% (p < 0.05) compared with the signal under non-fatigue conditions. This result indicates that the muscle stiffness signal is less sensitive to muscle fatigue than other biosignals. This investigation provides insights into methods of monitoring and compensating for muscle fatigue. PMID:25752771

  8. Design and Testing of a Dynamically-Tuned Magnetostrictive Spring with Electrically-Controlled Stiffness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scheidler, Justin; Asnani, Vivake M.; Dapino, Marcelo J.

    2015-01-01

    This paper details the development of an electrically-controlled, variable-stiffness spring based on magnetostrictive materials. The device, termed a magnetostrictive Varispring, can be applied as a semi-active vibration isolator or switched stiffness vibration controller for reducing transmitted vibrations. The Varispring is designed using 1D linear models that consider the coupled electrical response, mechanically-induced magnetic diffusion, and the effect of internal mass on dynamic stiffness. Modeling results illustrate that a Terfenol-D-based Varispring has a rise time almost an order of magnitude smaller and a magnetic diffusion cut-off frequency over two orders of magnitude greater than a Galfenol-based Varispring. The results motivate the use of laminated Terfenol-D rods for a greater stiffness tuning range and increased bandwidth. The behavior of a prototype Varispring is examined under vibratory excitation up to 6 MPa and 25 Hz using a dynamic load frame. For this prototype, stiffness is indirectly varied by controlling the excitation current. Preliminary measurements of continuous stiffness tuning via sinusoidal currents up to 1 kHz are presented. The measurements demonstrate that the Young's modulus of the Terfenol-D rod inside the Varispring can be continuously varied by up to 21.9 GPa. The observed stiffness tuning range is relatively constant up to 500 Hz, but significantly decreases thereafter. The stiffness tuning range can be greatly increased by improving the current and force control such that a more consistent current can be applied and the Varispring can be accurately tested at a more optimal bias stress.

  9. Design and testing of a dynamically tuned magnetostrictive spring with electrically controlled stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scheidler, Justin J.; Asnani, Vivake M.; Dapino, Marcelo J.

    2015-04-01

    This paper details the development of an electrically-controlled, variable-stiffness spring based on magnetostrictive materials. The device, termed a magnetostrictive Varispring, can be applied as a semi- active vibration isolator or switched stiffness vibration controller for reducing transmitted vibrations. The Varispring is designed using 1D linear models that consider the coupled electrical response, mechanically-induced magnetic diffusion, and the effect of internal mass on dynamic stiffness. Modeling results illustrate that a Terfenol-D-based Varispring has a rise time almost an order of magnitude smaller and a magnetic diffusion cut-off frequency over two orders of magnitude greater than a Galfenol-based Varispring. The results motivate the use of laminated Terfenol-D rods for a greater stiffness tuning range and increased bandwidth. The behavior of a prototype Varispring is examined under vibratory excitation up to 6 MPa and 25 Hz using a dynamic load frame. For this prototype, stiffness is indirectly varied by controlling the excitation current. Preliminary measurements of continuous stiffness tuning via sinusoidal currents up to 1 kHz are presented. The measurements demonstrate that the Young's modulus of the Terfenol-D rod inside the Varispring can be continuously varied by up to 21.9 GPa. The observed stiffness tuning range is relatively constant up to 500 Hz, but significantly decreases thereafter. The stiffness tuning range can be greatly increased by improving the current and force control such that a more consistent current can be applied and the Varispring can be accurately tested at a more optimal bias stress.

  10. Arterial stiffness response to exercise in persons with and without Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Hu, Min; Yan, Huimin; Ranadive, Sushant M; Agiovlasitis, Stamatis; Fahs, Christopher A; Atiq, Muhammed; Atique, Nazia; Fernhall, Bo

    2013-10-01

    This study compared arterial stiffness and wave reflection at rest and following maximal exercise between individuals with and without Down syndrome (DS), and the influence of body mass index (BMI), peak oxygen uptake (VO2 peak) on changes in arterial stiffness. Twelve people with DS (26.6 2.6 yr) and 15 healthy controls (26.2 0.6 yr) completed this study. Intima-media thickness (IMT) and stiffness of common carotid artery was examined. Hemodynamic and arterial variables were measured before and 3-min after exercise. Persons with DS had higher BMI and lower VO 2 peak than controls. IMT did not differ between groups. At rest, carotid ? stiffness was significantly higher in persons with DS (P<0.05) but there was no difference in between groups for any of the other arterial stiffness measures. After exercise, persons with DS exhibited attenuated arterial stiffness responses in AIx-75, carotid ? stiffness and Ep in contrast with controls (significant group-by-time interactions). When controlling for BMI and VO 2 peak, the interactions disappeared. In both groups combined, BMI was correlated significantly with carotid Ep and ? at rest. VO 2 peak correlated significantly with AIx-75 and its pre-post change (r=-0.45, P=0.029; r=0.47, P=0.033, respectively). The arterial stiffness responses to maximal exercise in persons with DS were blunted, potentially reflecting diminished vascular reserve. Obesity and particularly VO 2 peak influenced these findings. These results suggest impaired vascular function in people with DS. PMID:23883823

  11. Dynamic stiffness removal for direct numerical simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Tianfeng; Law, Chung K.; Yoo, Chun Sang; Chen, Jacqueline H.

    2009-08-15

    A systematic approach was developed to derive non-stiff reduced mechanisms for direct numerical simulations (DNS) with explicit integration solvers. The stiffness reduction was achieved through on-the-fly elimination of short time-scales induced by two features of fast chemical reactivity, namely quasi-steady-state (QSS) species and partial-equilibrium (PE) reactions. The sparse algebraic equations resulting from QSS and PE approximations were utilized such that the efficiency of the dynamic stiffness reduction is high compared with general methods of time-scale reduction based on Jacobian decomposition. Using the dimension reduction strategies developed in our previous work, a reduced mechanism with 52 species was first derived from a detailed mechanism with 561 species. The reduced mechanism was validated for ignition and extinction applications over the parameter range of equivalence ratio between 0.5 and 1.5, pressure between 10 and 50 atm, and initial temperature between 700 and 1600 K for ignition, and worst-case errors of approximately 30% were observed. The reduced mechanism with dynamic stiffness removal was then applied in homogeneous and 1-D ignition applications, as well as a 2-D direct numerical simulation of ignition with temperature inhomogeneities at constant volume with integration time-steps of 5-10 ns. The integration was numerically stable and good accuracy was achieved. (author)

  12. Stiffness changes in frog skeletal muscle during contraction recorded using ultrasonic waves.

    PubMed Central

    Hatta, I; Sugi, H; Tamura, Y

    1988-01-01

    1. A technique has been developed with which the stiffness changes in frog skeletal muscle can be continuously recorded by measuring the propagation velocity of ultrasonic waves (3-7 MHz) with negligibly small perturbations to the contractile system. 2. The resting muscle stiffness was 2.256 +/- 0.002 x 10(9) N/m2 (S.D.) at 1-2 degrees C (n = 10) and 2.480 +/- 0.007 x 10(9) N/m2 at 19-20 degrees C (n = 12) in the longitudinal direction, and 2.223 +/- 0.008 x 10(9) N/m2 at 1-2 degrees C (n = 8) and 2.437 +/- 0.007 x 10(9) N/m2 at 19-20 degrees C (n = 9) in the transverse direction. 3. The resting muscle stiffness measured with ultrasonic waves was virtually insensitive to the resting force development, i.e. the extension of the parallel elastic component. 4. The longitudinal muscle stiffness increased during isometric contraction at a rate faster than the force development. The amount of increase of the longitudinal stiffness in an isometric tetanus at 2.2 microns sarcomere length was 2.4 +/- 0.1 x 10(7) N/m2 at 1-2 degrees C (n = 10) and 6.5 +/- 1.3 x 10(7) N/m2 at 19-20 degrees C (n = 12). 5. On the other hand, the transverse muscle stiffness decreased during isometric contraction at a rate faster than the force development. The amount of decrease of the transverse stiffness in an isometric tetanus at 2.2 microns sarcomere length was 5.6 +/- 0.1 x 10(7) N/m2 at 1-2 degrees C (n = 8) and 6.4 +/- 0.3 x 10(7) N/m2 at 19-20 degrees C (n = 9). 6. The amount of both the longitudinal and the transverse stiffness changes during an isometric tetanus decreased linearly with increasing sarcomere length, indicating that the stiffness changes during contraction reflect the formation of cross-links between the myofilaments. 7. Both the longitudinal and the transverse stiffness increased when resting muscle was put into rigor state. The rigor muscle stiffness was insensitive to small stretches, i.e. the strain of the rigor cross-links. 8. These results are discussed in connection with the behaviour of cross-bridges during isometric contraction and in rigor. PMID:3075667

  13. Magnetic levitation and stiffness in melt-textured Y-Ba-Cu-O

    SciTech Connect

    Hull, J.R.; Mulcahy, T.M. ); Salama, K.; Selvamanickam, V. ); Weinberger, B.R.; Lynds, L. )

    1992-09-01

    Magnetic levitation and stiffness have been measured in several systems composed of a permanent magnet elastically suspended above a stationary melt-textured sample of Y-Ba-Cu-O. The levitation force and vertical stiffness have been calculated on the basis of magnetization measurements of the same system, and the calculated results showed excellent agreement with the experimental measurements. Based on the force and magnetization measurements, it is predicted that the same Y-Ba-Cu-O material configured in a geometry suitable for magnetic bearings could produce a levitation pressure of 100--400 kPa at 20 K.

  14. Cartesian stiffness for wrist joints: analysis on the Lie group of 3D rotations and geometric approximation for experimental evaluation.

    PubMed

    Campolo, Domenico

    2013-01-01

    This paper is concerned with the analysis and the numerical evaluation from experimental measurements of the static, Cartesian stiffness of wrist joints, in particular the human wrist. The primary aim is to extend from Euclidean spaces to so(3), the group of rigid body rotations, previous methods for assessing the end-point stiffness of the human arm, typically performed via a robotic manipulandum. As a first step, the geometric definition of Cartesian stiffness from current literature is specialised to the group so(3). Emphasis is placed on the choice of the unique, natural, affine connection on so(3) which guarantees symmetry of the stiffness matrix in presence of conservative fields for any configuration, also out of equilibrium. As the main contribution of this study, a coordinate-independent approximation based on the geometric notion of geodesics is proposed which provides a working equation for evaluating stiffness directly from experimental measurements. Finally, a graphical representation of the stiffness is discussed which extends the ellipse method often used for end-point stiffness visualisation and which is suitable to compare stiffness matrices evaluated at different configurations. PMID:22224937

  15. In vivo Assessment of MR Elastography-Derived Effective End-Diastolic Myocardial Stiffness under Different Loading Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Kolipaka, Arunark; McGee, Kiaran P.; Manduca, Armando; Anavekar, Nandan; Ehman, Richard L.; Araoz, Philip A.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose To compare magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) effective stiffness to end-diastolic pressure at different loading conditions to demonstrate a relationship between myocardial MRE effective stiffness and end-diastolic left ventricular (LV) pressure. Methods MRE was performed on 4 pigs to measure the end-diastolic effective stiffness under different loading conditions. End-diastolic pressure was increased by infusing dextran-40 (20% of blood volume). For each infusion of dextran-40, end-diastolic pressure was recorded and end-diastolic effective stiffness was measured using MRE. In each pig, least-square linear regression was performed to determine the correlation between end-diastolic effective stiffness and end-diastolic LV pressure. Results A linear correlation was found between end-diastolic LV pressure and end-diastolic effective stiffness with R2 ranging from 0.730.9. A linear correlation with R2 = 0.26 was found between end-diastolic LV pressure and end-diastolic effective stiffness when pooling data points from all pigs. Conclusion End-diastolic effective myocardial stiffness increases linearly with end-diastolic LV pressure. PMID:21509882

  16. WRF tests on sensitivity to PBL and LSM schemes during atmospheric transition periods: validation with BLLAST case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sastre, Mariano; Steeneveld, Gert-Jan; Yage, Carlos; Romn-Cascn, Carlos; Maqueda, Gregorio

    2014-05-01

    The structure and properties at a certain time of the atmospheric or planetary boundary layer (PBL) has a major importance in land-atmosphere interaction and exchange processes, i.e. in pollutants concentration, humidity or different energy vertical fluxes. Transition periods at this part of the troposphere are found difficult to properly interpret, as far as among all the processes taking place at that timing, it is not clearly stated the predominance of just one of them; moreover, a drastic change in the motion scales present in the lower atmosphere is sometimes produced. Atmospheric global models fail at representing transitional events in the PBL, mainly because of sub-grid scale phenomena. These micrometeorological processes require to be better simulated. Weather Research and Forecast (WRF) mesoscale model offers a considerable amount of physical options and parameterizations, including different PBL and land surface model (LSM) schemes. This fact justifies a model experiment to evaluate its behavior and try to understand the differences in model performance for transition periods in the atmosphere, specifically when it moves on from a convective to a stratified stable structure at its lower region. The Boundary Layer Late Afternoon and Sunset Turbulent (BLLAST) project organized and conducted a field campaign [1] during summer 2011 in Lannemezan (France), getting together a wide amount of meteorological instrumentation. The available extensive experimental dataset from that campaign offers an excellent opportunity for model validation. Results of WRF sensitivity tests are presented, comparing simulations among themselves and validating them with the observational data. Different atmospheric variables involved in the late afternoon and evening transition processes are considered, both at surface (i.e. energy balance) and at higher levels (thermodynamic vertical structure), in order to obtain a wider view of the problem. [1] Lothon, M. and co-authors (2012): The Boundary-Layer Late Afternoon and Sunset Turbulence field experiment. Paper 14B.1, 20th Symposium on Boundary-Layers and turbulence, Boston, MA, Amer. Meteor. Soc., 12 pp.

  17. A novel variable stiffness actuator: minimizing the energy requirements for the stiffness regulation.

    PubMed

    Tsagarikis, Nikos G; Jafari, Amir; Caldwell, Darwin G

    2010-01-01

    The design of robots required to work in the close vicinity or physically interact with humans such as humanoids machines, rehabilitation or human performance augmentation systems should not follow the traditional design rule 'stiffer is better'. Safety is a particularly vital concern in these systems and to maximize it a different design approach should be used. The role of compliance in improving specific suspects of the robotic system, including safety and energy efficiency, has been studied and validated in many works. This work presents the design and realization of a new variable compliance actuator for robots physically interacting with humans, e.g. prosthesis devices and exoskeleton augmentation systems. The actuator can independently control the equilibrium position and stiffness using two motors. The main novelty of the proposed variable stiffness actuator is that the stiffness regulation is achieved not through the pretension of the elastic elements which needs the stiffness tuning actuator to act against the forces generated by the springs but by mechanically adjusting the fixation of the spring elements. As a result the stiffness actuator does not need to act against the spring forces reducing the energy required for the stiffness adjustment to minimal. PMID:21095917

  18. Distraction osteogenesis device to estimate the axial stiffness of the callus in Vivo.

    PubMed

    Mora-Macías, J; Reina-Romo, E; Domínguez, J

    2015-10-01

    Knowing the evolution of callus stiffness is very important in distraction osteogenesis and bone healing. It allows the characterization of the bone maturation process and the assessment of the moment to retire the fixator. A new distractor device that monitors the callus axial stiffness is presented in this study. It quantifies the callus stiffness during the bone transport process with some advantages over previous methods to assess stiffness during simple distraction and bone healing. This device avoids a misalignment between bone segments, uses real load conditions, monitors forces continuously, does not involve radiation for patients, and allows the study of the complete distraction process, i.e., the distraction and consolidation phases. The device was calibrated in vitro simulating different real bone load conditions depending on the stage of the process. The stiffness of the callus could be estimated for values between 4.2 N/mm and 9066.8 N/mm. The average relative error in measurements carried out in in vitro calibration tests was 7.8% during the distraction phase and 9.5% during the consolidation phase. These results improve the accuracy and increase the callus stiffness range of estimation with respect to other devices in the literature. In addition, the device was used successfully in vivo in a preliminary experiment. PMID:26320818

  19. A novel magnetorheological elastomer isolator with negative changing stiffness for vibration reduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, J.; Sun, S. S.; Du, H.; Li, W. H.; Alici, G.; Deng, H. X.

    2014-10-01

    Magneto-rheological elastomers (MREs) have attracted notable credits in the development of smart isolators and absorbers due to their controllable stiffness and damping properties. For the purpose of mitigating unwanted structural and/or machinery vibrations, the traditional MRE-based isolators have been generally proven effective because the MR effect can increase the stiffness when the magnetic field is strengthened. This study presents a novel MRE isolator that experienced reduced stiffness when the applied current was increased. This innovative work was accomplished by applying a hybrid magnet (electromagnet and permanent magnets) onto a multilayered MRE structure. To characterise this negative changing stiffness concept, a multilayered MRE isolator with a hybrid magnet was first designed, fabricated and then tested to measure its properties. An obvious reduction of the effective stiffness and natural frequency of the proposed MRE isolator occurred when the current was continuously adjusted. This device could also work as a conventional MRE isolator as its effective stiffness and natural frequency also increased when a negative current was applied. Further testing was carried out on a one-degree-of-freedom system to assess how effectively this device could isolate vibration. In this experiment, two cases were considered; in each case, the vibration of the primary system was obviously attenuated under ON-OFF control logic, thus demonstrating the feasibility of this novel design as an alternative adaptive vibration isolator.

  20. Arterial stiffness variations by gender in African-American and Caucasian children.

    PubMed Central

    Hlaing, WayWay M.; Prineas, Ronald J.

    2006-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Most arterial stiffness studies have been conducted in adult populations as a part of the aging process in the arterial system. Arterial stiffness is an important early marker of disease identification that may lead to improved cardiovascular health. The aim of this study was to assess the gender and ethnic differences in the arterial stiffness levels among children and adolescents. DESIGN: From a subgroup of schoolchildren who participated in a prospective cohort study in Minnesota, Caucasian and African-American children who completed 16 timed visits were included in this report (n=487). The participants were followed from 1978 (7.68 +/- 0.72 years) to 1987 (16.65 +/- 0.71 years). A surrogate measure of arterial stiffness-arterial pulse pressure (APP in mmHg)--was used. RESULTS: Adjusted APP differences started to appear around 12.67 years and persisted throughout the study. Boys consistently had higher APP levels than the girls. Ethnic differences in adjusted APP levels were observed at an earlier age (7.68 years) but did not persist after age 10. CONCLUSION: APP levels were different between gender and ethnic groups in youth. These early indications of arterial stiffness warrant further exploration of arterial stiffness etiology. PMID:16708504

  1. Topography compensation for haptization of a mesh object and its stiffness distribution.

    PubMed

    Yim, Sunghoon; Jeon, Seokhee; Choi, Seungmoon

    2015-01-01

    This work was motivated by the need for perceptualizing nano-scale scientific data, e.g., those acquired by a scanning probe microscope, where collocated topography and stiffness distribution of a surface can be measured. Previous research showed that when the topography of a surface with spatially varying stiffness is rendered using the conventional penalty-based haptic rendering method, the topography perceived by the user could be significantly distorted from its original model. In the worst case, a higher region with a smaller stiffness value can be perceived to be lower than a lower region with a larger stiffness value. This problem was explained by the theory of force constancy: the user tends to maintain an invariant contact force when s/he strokes the surface to perceive its topography. In this paper, we present a haptization algorithm that can render the shape of a mesh surface and its stiffness distribution with high perceptual accuracy. Our algorithm adaptively changes the surface topography on the basis of the force constancy theory to deliver adequate shape information to the user while preserving the stiffness perception. We also evaluated the performance of the proposed haptization algorithm in comparison to the constraint-based algorithm by examining relevant proximal stimuli and carrying out a user experiment. Results demonstrated that our algorithm could improve the perceptual accuracy of shape and reduce the exploration time, thereby leading to more accurate and efficient haptization. PMID:25794366

  2. Mechanical stiffness grades metastatic potential in patient tumor cells and in cancer cell lines

    PubMed Central

    Swaminathan, Vinay; Mythreye, Karthikeyan; OBrien, E Tim; Berchuck, Andrew; Blobe, Gerard C; Superfine, Richard

    2011-01-01

    Cancer cells are defined by their ability to invade through the basement membrane, a critical step during metastasis. While increased secretion of proteases, which facilitates degradation of the basement membrane, and alterations in the cytoskeletal architecture of cancer cells have been previously studied, the contribution of the mechanical properties of cells in invasion is unclear. Here we apply a magnetic tweezer system to establish that stiffness of patient tumor cells and cancer cell lines inversely correlates with migration and invasion through three-dimensional basement membranes, a correlation known as a power law. We found that cancer cells with the highest migratory and invasive potential are five times less stiff than cells with the lowest migration and invasion potential. Moreover, decreasing cell stiffness by pharmacological inhibition of myosin II increases invasiveness, while increasing cell stiffness by restoring expression of the metastasis suppressor T?RIII/betaglycan decreases invasiveness. These findings are the first demonstration of the power law relation between the stiffness and the invasiveness of cancer cells and show that mechanical phenotypes can be used to grade the metastatic potential of cell populations with the potential for single cell grading. The measurement of a mechanical phenotype, taking minutes rather than hours needed for invasion assays, is promising as a quantitative diagnostic method and as a discovery tool for therapeutics. By demonstrating that altering stiffness predictably alters invasiveness, our results indicate that pathways regulating these mechanical phenotypes are novel targets for molecular therapy of cancer. PMID:21642375

  3. Increasing trap stiffness with position clamping in holographic optical tweezers.

    PubMed

    Preece, Daryl; Bowman, Richard; Linnenberger, Anna; Gibson, Graham; Serati, Steven; Padgett, Miles

    2009-12-01

    We present a holographic optical tweezers system capable of position clamping multiple particles. Moving an optical trap in response to the trapped object's motion is a powerful technique for optical control and force measurement. We have now realised this experimentally using a Boulder Nonlinear Systems Spatial Light Modulator (SLM) with a refresh rate of 203Hz. We obtain a reduction of 44% in the variance of the bead's position, corresponding to an increase in effective trap stiffness of 77%. This reduction relies on the generation of holograms at high speed. We present software capable of calculating holograms in under 1ms using a graphics processor unit. PMID:20052197

  4. Photoinduced variable stiffness of spiropyran-based composites

    SciTech Connect

    Samoylova, E.; Ceseracciu, L.; Allione, M.; Diaspro, A.; Barone, A. C.; Athanassiou, A.

    2011-11-14

    A quantitative demonstration of reversible stiffness upon appropriate light stimulus in a spiropyran-polymeric composite is presented. The polymeric films containing 3% wt. of the photochromic spiropyran were irradiated with alternating ultraviolet and visible light and the storage modulus was measured. A reversible change in modulus of about 7% was observed. The modulus change was attributed to an interaction of the polar merocyanine with the polymeric chains and/or to a variation of effective free volume induced by merocyanine aggregates formed in the polymer upon ultraviolet irradiation. The effect is fully reversed when the merocyanine isomers turn back to the spiropyran state after visible irradiation.

  5. Scaling of Fluid Flow and Seismic Stiffness of Fractures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrovitch, C.; Nolte, D.; Pyrak-Nolte, L. J.

    2011-12-01

    A firm understanding of the relationship between the hydraulic and mechanical properties of fractures has been long sought. Seismic techniques probe the mechanical properties of fractures, e.g. fracture specific stiffness. Providing a connection between fluid flow and fracture stiffness would enable remote estimation of the flow properties in the subsurface. Linking theses two properties would improve society's ability to assess the risk related to the extraction of drinkable water, oil production, and the storage of CO2 in subsurface reservoirs. This relationship is complicated because the subsurface is composed of a hierarchy of structures and processes that span a large range of length and time scales. A scaling approach enables researchers to translate laboratory measurements towards the field scale and vise a versa. We performed a computational study of the scaling of the flow-stiffness relationship for planar fractures with uncorrelated aperture distributions. Three numerical models were required to study the scaling properties of the flow-stiffness relationship for single fractures. Firstly, the fracture topologies where constructed using a stratified continuum percolation method. Only uncorrelated fracture geometries were considered to provide a baseline of understanding for the different interacting critical thresholds occurring in the hydraulic and mechanical properties. Secondly, fracture stiffness was calculated by modeling the deformation of asperities and a deformable half space. This model computed the displacement-stress curves for a given fracture, from which the stiffness was extracted. Thirdly, due to the sensitive nature of the critical phenomena associated with fluid flow through fractures, two network flow models were used for verification. The fractures were first modeled as a network of elliptical pipes and the corresponding linear system of equations was solved. The second method consisted of using a lattice grid network, where the flow is computed using the "cubic law." Fractures were generated at five sizes (1, 0.5, 0.25, 0.125, and 0.0625m) to provide an order of magnitude variation. Each fracture was constructed such that the contact area ranged from approximately 5% to 30%. The rocks were given the properties of granite and stressed to a maximum load of 70MPa. The deformation solver was given 50 steps to reach the final load so that its flow rate could be monitored during each loading step. The results clearly showed a dependence on scale. Under low loads flow-stiffness was in an effective medium regime. However as the load increased, a distinct scale dependence emerged. This occurs because as the load increases there is an overall increase in contact area, which in turn moves the flow dynamics into a critical regime. From this finite size scaling effect, we analyzed how the uncorrelated topologies length scales changed under load to compute the flow exponents for the system. Acknowledgments: Geosciences Research Program, Office of Basic Energy Sciences US Department of Energy (DE-FG02-09ER16022), the Geo-mathematical Imaging Group at Purdue University, and the Purdue Research Foundation.

  6. Wave Propagation of Myocardial Stretch: Correlation with Myocardial Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Pislaru, Cristina; Pellikka, Patricia A.; Pislaru, Sorin V.

    2015-01-01

    The mechanism of flow propagation during diastole in the left ventricle (LV) has been well described. Little is known about the associated waves propagating along the heart wall s. These waves may have a mechanism similar to pulse wave propagation in arteries. The major goal of the study was to evaluate the effect of myocardial stiffness and preload on this wave transmission. Methods Longitudinal late diastolic deformation and wave speed (Vp) of myocardial stretch in the anterior LV wall were measured using sonomicrometry in sixteen pigs. Animals with normal and altered myocardial stiffness (acute myocardial infarction) were studied with and without preload alterations. Elastic modulus estimated from Vp (EVP; Moens-Korteweg equation) was compared to incremental elastic modulus obtained from exponential end -diastolic stress-strain relation (ESS). Myocardial distensibility and ?-and ?-coefficients of stress-strain relations were calculated. Results Vp was higher at reperfusion compared to baseline (2.61.3 m/s vs. 1.30.4 m/s; p=0.005) and best correlated with ESS (r 2=0.80, p<0.0001), ?-coefficient (r2=0.78, p<0.0001), distensibility (r2=0.47, p=0.005), and wall thickness/diameter ratio (r2=0.42, p=0.009). Elastic moduli (EVP and ESS) were strongly correlated (r2=0.83, p<0.0001). Increasing preload increased Vp and EVP and decreased distensibility. At multivariate analysis, ESS, wall thickness, and end-diastolic and systolic LV pressures were independent predictors of Vp (r2model=0.83, p<0.0001). Conclusions The main determinants of wave propagation of longitudinal myocardial stretch were myocardial stiffness and LV geometry and pressure. This local wave speed could potentially be measured noninvasively by echocardiography. PMID:25193091

  7. Circulating Angiogenic Cell Populations, Vascular Function, and Arterial Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Susan; Wang, Na; Larson, Martin G.; Palmisano, Joseph N.; Mitchell, Gary F.; Benjamin, Emelia J.; Vasan, Ramachandran S; Levy, Daniel; McCabe, Elizabeth L.; Vita, Joseph A.; Wang, Thomas J.; Shaw, Stanley Y.; Cohen, Kenneth S.; Hamburg, Naomi M.

    2011-01-01

    Objective Several bone marrow-derived cell populations have been identified that may possess angiogenic activity and contribute to vascular homeostasis in experimental studies. We examined the extent to which lower quantities of these circulating angiogenic cell phenotypes may be related to impaired vascular function and greater arterial stiffness. Methods We studied 1,948 Framingham Heart Study participants (mean age, 669 years; 54% women) who were phenotyped for circulating angiogenic cells: CD34+, CD34+/KDR+, and early outgrowth colony forming units (CFU). Participants underwent non-invasive assessments of vascular function including peripheral arterial tone (PAT), arterial tonometry, and brachial reactivity testing. Results In unadjusted analyses, higher CD34+ and CD34+/KDR+ concentrations were modestly associated with lower PAT ratio (?=?0.0520.011, P<0.001 and ?=?0.0300.011, P=0.008, respectively) and with higher carotid-brachial pulse wave velocity (?=0.1440.043, P=0.001 and ?=0.1120.043, P=0.009), but not with flow-mediated dilation; higher CD34+ was also associated with lower carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (?=?0.2290.094, P=0.015) However, only the association of lower CD34+ concentration with higher PAT ratio persisted in multivariable analyses that adjusted for standard cardiovascular risk factors. In all analyses, CFU was not associated with measures of vascular function or arterial stiffness. Conclusions In our large, community-based sample of men and women, circulating angiogenic cell phenotypes largely were not associated with measures of vascular function or arterial stiffness in analyses adjusting for traditional risk factors. PMID:22093724

  8. Wave propagation of myocardial stretch: correlation with myocardial stiffness.

    PubMed

    Pislaru, Cristina; Pellikka, Patricia A; Pislaru, Sorin V

    2014-01-01

    The mechanism of flow propagation during diastole in the left ventricle (LV) has been well described. Little is known about the associated waves propagating along the heart walls. These waves may have a mechanism similar to pulse wave propagation in arteries. The major goal of the study was to evaluate the effect of myocardial stiffness and preload on this wave transmission. Longitudinal late diastolic deformation and wave speed (Vp) of myocardial stretch in the anterior LV wall were measured using sonomicrometry in 16 pigs. Animals with normal and altered myocardial stiffness (acute myocardial infarction) were studied with and without preload alterations. Elastic modulus estimated from Vp (E VP; Moens-Korteweg equation) was compared to incremental elastic modulus obtained from exponential end-diastolic stress-strain relation (E SS). Myocardial distensibility and α- and β-coefficients of stress-strain relations were calculated. Vp was higher at reperfusion compared to baseline (2.6 ± 1.3 vs. 1.3 ± 0.4 m/s; p = 0.005) and best correlated with E SS (r2 = 0.80, p < 0.0001), β-coefficient (r2 = 0.78, p < 0.0001), distensibility (r2 = 0.47, p = 0.005), and wall thickness/diameter ratio (r2 = 0.42, p = 0.009). Elastic moduli (E VP and E SS) were strongly correlated (r2 = 0.83, p < 0.0001). Increasing preload increased Vp and E VP and decreased distensibility. At multivariate analysis, E SS, wall thickness, and end-diastolic and systolic LV pressures were independent predictors of Vp (r2 model = 0.83, p < 0.0001). In conclusion, the main determinants of wave propagation of longitudinal myocardial stretch were myocardial stiffness and LV geometry and pressure. This local wave speed could potentially be measured noninvasively by echocardiography. PMID:25193091

  9. Basic study of intrinsic elastography: Relationship between tissue stiffness and propagation velocity of deformation induced by pulsatile flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagaoka, Ryo; Iwasaki, Ryosuke; Arakawa, Mototaka; Kobayashi, Kazuto; Yoshizawa, Shin; Umemura, Shin-ichiro; Saijo, Yoshifumi

    2015-07-01

    We proposed an estimation method for a tissue stiffness from deformations induced by arterial pulsation, and named this proposed method intrinsic elastography (IE). In IE, assuming that the velocity of the deformation propagation in tissues is closely related to the stiffness, the propagation velocity (PV) was estimated by spatial compound ultrasound imaging with a high temporal resolution of 1 ms. However, the relationship between tissue stiffness and PV has not been revealed yet. In this study, the PV of the deformation induced by the pulsatile pump was measured by IE in three different poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) phantoms of different stiffnesses. The measured PV was compared with the shear wave velocity (SWV) measured by shear wave imaging (SWI). The measured PV has trends similar to the measured SWV. These results obtained by IE in a healthy male show the possibility that the mechanical properties of living tissues could be evaluated by IE.

  10. Light weight high-stiffness stage platen

    DOEpatents

    Spence, Paul A. (Pleasanton, CA)

    2001-01-01

    An improved light weight, stiff stage platen for photolithography is provided. The high stiffness of the stage platen is exemplified by a relatively high first resonant vibrational mode as determined, for instance, by finite element modal analysis. The stage platen can be employed to support a chuck that is designed to secure a mask or wafer. The stage platen includes a frame that has interior walls that define an interior region and that has exterior walls wherein the outer surfaces of at least two adjacent walls are reflective mirror surfaces; and a matrix of ribs within the interior region that is connected to the interior walls wherein the stage platen exhibits a first vibrational mode at a frequency of greater than about 1000 Hz.

  11. Stiffness and mass matrices for shells of revolution (SAMMSOR II)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tillerson, J. R.; Haisler, W. E.

    1974-01-01

    Utilizing element properties, structural stiffness and mass matrices are generated for as many as twenty harmonics and stored on magnetic tape. Matrices generated constitute input data to be used by other stiffness of revolution programs. Variety of boundary and loading conditions can be employed without having to create new mass and stiffness matrices for each case.

  12. Stiff modes in spinvalve simulations with OOMMF

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitropoulos, Spyridon; Tsiantos, Vassilis; Ovaliadis, Kyriakos; Kechrakos, Dimitris; Donahue, Michael

    2016-04-01

    Micromagnetic simulations are an important tool for the investigation of magnetic materials. Micromagnetic software uses various techniques to solve differential equations, partial or ordinary, involved in the dynamic simulations. Euler, Runge-Kutta, Adams, and BDF (Backward Differentiation Formulae) are some of the methods used for this purpose. In this paper, spinvalve simulations are investigated. Evidence is presented showing that these systems have stiff modes, and that implicit methods such as BDF are more effective than explicit methods in such cases.

  13. Lamb Wave Stiffness Characterization of Composites Undergoing Thermal-Mechanical Aging

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seale, Michael D.; Madaras, Eric I.

    2004-01-01

    The introduction of new, advanced composite materials into aviation systems requires a thorough understanding of the long term effects of combined thermal and mechanical loading upon those materials. Analytical methods investigating the effects of intense thermal heating combined with mechanical loading have been investigated. The damage mechanisms and fatigue lives were dependent on test parameters as well as stress levels. Castelli, et al. identified matrix dominated failure modes for out-of-phase cycling and fiber dominated damage modes for in-phase cycling. In recent years, ultrasonic methods have been developed that can measure the mechanical stiffness of composites. To help evaluate the effect of aging, a suitably designed Lamb wave measurement system is being used to obtain bending and out-of-plane stiffness coefficients of composite laminates undergoing thermal-mechanical loading. The system works by exciting an antisymmetric Lamb wave and calculating the velocity at each frequency from the known transducer separation and the measured time-of-flight. The same peak in the waveforms received at various distances is used to measure the time difference between the signals. The velocity measurements are accurate and repeatable to within 1% resulting in reconstructed stiffness values repeatable to within 4%. Given the material density and plate thickness, the bending and out-of-plane shear stiffnesses are calculated from a reconstruction of the dispersion curve. A mechanical scanner is used to move the sensors over the surface to map the time-of-flight, velocity, or stiffnesses of the entire specimen. Access to only one side of the material is required and no immersion or couplants are required because the sensors are dry coupled to the surface of the plate. In this study, the elastic stiffnesses D(sub 11), D(sub 22), A(sub 44), and A(sub 55) as well as time-of-flight measurements for composite samples that have undergone combined thermal and mechanical aging for a duration of 10,000 hours are reported.

  14. Magnetic Resonance Elastography as a Method for the Assessment of Effective Myocardial Stiffness throughout the Cardiac Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Kolipaka, Arunark; Araoz, Philip A.; McGee, Kiaran P.; Manduca, Armando; Ehman, Richard L.

    2011-01-01

    Magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) is a noninvasive technique in which images of externally generated waves propagating in tissue are used to measure stiffness. The first aim is to determine, from a range of driver configurations the optimal driver for the purpose of generating waves within the heart in vivo. The second aim is to quantify the shear stiffness of normal myocardium throughout the cardiac cycle using MRE and to compare MRE stiffness to left ventricular (LV) chamber pressure in an in vivo pig model. MRE was performed in 6-pigs with 6-different driver setups including no motion, 3-noninvasive drivers and 2-invasive drivers. MRE wave displacement amplitudes were calculated for each driver. During the same MRI examination, LV pressure and MRI-measured LV volume were obtained, and MRE myocardial stiffness was calculated for 20 phases of the cardiac cycle. No discernible waves were imaged when no external motion was applied, and a single pneumatic drum driver produced higher amplitude waves than the other noninvasive drivers (P <0.05). Pressure-volume loops overlaid onto stiffness-volume loops showed good visual agreement. Pressure and MRE-measured effective stiffness showed good correlation (R2 = 0.84). MRE shows potential as a noninvasive method for estimating effective myocardial stiffness throughout the cardiac cycle. PMID:20578052

  15. Ethnic Differences in Bending Stiffness of the Ulna and Tibia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnaud, S. B.; Liang, M. T. C.; Bassin, S.; Braun, W.; Dutto, D.; Plesums, K.; Huvnh, H. T.; Cooper, D.; Wong, N.

    2004-01-01

    There is considerable information about the variations in bone mass associated with different opportunity to compare a mechanical property of bone in young college women of Caucasian, Hispanic and Asian descent who gave informed consent to participate in an exercise study. The subjects were sedentary, in good health, eumenorrheic, non-smokers and had body mass indices (BMI) less than 30. Measurements acquired were body weight, kg, and height, cm, calcaneal and wrist bone density, g/square cm (PIXI, Lunar GE) and bending stiffness (EI, Nm(exp 2)) in the ulna and tibia. E1 was determined non-invasively with an instrument called the Mechanical Response Tissue Analyzer (MRTA) that delivers a vibratory stimulus to the center of the ulna or tibia and analyzes the response curve based on the equation E1 = k(sub b) L(exp 3)/48 where k, is lateral bending stiffness, L is the length of the bone, E is Young's modulus of elasticity and I, the bending moment of inertia. The error of the test (CV) based on measurements of an aluminum rod with a known E1 was 4.8%, of calcaneal BMD, 0.54%, and of wrist bone density, 3.45%.

  16. The association between in utero hyperinsulinemia and adolescent arterial stiffness.

    TOXLINE Toxicology Bibliographic Information

    Tam WH; Ma RC; Yip GW; Yang X; Li AM; Ko GT; Lao TT; Chan JC

    2012-01-01

    AIM: To determine the relationship between in utero hyperinsulinemia and children's arterial stiffness at adolescence.METHODS: Indices of arterial stiffness were measured using the SphygmoCor apparatus in 129 adolescents (42 offsprings of mother with gestational diabetes and 87 offsprings of mother with normal glucose tolerance during pregnancy) at 15 years of age.RESULTS: Adolescent of mothers with gestational diabetes had similar central aortic blood pressure, augmentation pressure (AP), augmentation index (AI), and carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV) as that of controls. However, both umbilical cord C-peptide and insulin levels correlated positively AI (R=0.28 and 0.24; p=0.011 and 0.035, respectively), and umbilical insulin level correlated positively with AP (R=0.25; p=0.025). The correlations were significant between umbilical cord C-peptide and AP (R=0.24; p=0.035) and AI (R=0.29; p=0.011) after adjustment for subjects' age, sex, body weight and height. Adolescents who had umbilical cord C-peptide levels at highest quartile (n=25), based on the reference ranges of the original cohort, had a significant greater PWV (5.26±0.12 m/s vs 4.98±0.12 m/s; p=0.0049) than those with C-peptide levels at the lower 3 quartiles (n=57) after adjustment for age, sex, body weight and height.CONCLUSIONS: In utero hyperinsulinemia appears to increase the offspring's arterial stiffness at early adolescence.

  17. Reflex ankle stiffness is inversely correlated with natural body sway.

    PubMed

    Julien, Brianna L; Bendrups, Andrew P

    2016-02-01

    We aimed to determine whether effective ankle stiffness (EAS), measured during slow unperceived perturbations of stance, is related to natural anterior-posterior body sway. Because the perturbations are not perceived, any neural component of the response to perturbation is assumed to be "reflex", in the broad sense of an involuntary response to a stimulus. Subjects stood on a force platform for three 10-min trials. EAS was obtained from the average slope (Δτ/Δα) of the relation between ankle torque (τ) and ankle angle (α), recorded during repeated perturbations delivered at the waist by a weak spring. EAS was normalised using the subject's "load stiffness" (LS), calculated from mass (m) and height (h) above the ankle joint (m·g·h). Sway was obtained from fluctuations in ankle angle prior to perturbation. Variation in EAS and sway between subjects provided spread of data for correlation. There were no significant changes in EAS or sway across trials. All subjects had higher EAS than LS and mean EAS (1124Nm/rad) was significantly greater (p<0.01) than mean LS (531Nm/rad). There was a strong significant inverse correlation between mean sway and mean normalised EAS (r=-0.68, p=0.03). We conclude that the body, in response to slow unperceived perturbations, simulates an inverted pendulum with a stiffness of about twice LS and that EAS is largely generated by neural modulation of postural muscles. The inverse correlation between EAS and body sway suggests that the reflex mechanisms responding to perturbation also influence the extent of natural sway. PMID:27004645

  18. Cosmology with a stiff matter era

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chavanis, Pierre-Henri

    2015-11-01

    We consider the possibility that the Universe is made of a dark fluid described by a quadratic equation of state P =K ρ2 , where ρ is the rest-mass density and K is a constant. The energy density ɛ =ρ c2+K ρ2 is the sum of two terms: a rest-mass term ρ c2 that mimics "dark matter" (P =0 ) and an internal energy term u =K ρ2=P that mimics a "stiff fluid" (P =ɛ ) in which the speed of sound is equal to the speed of light. In the early universe, the internal energy dominates and the dark fluid behaves as a stiff fluid (P ˜ɛ , ɛ ∝a-6). In the late universe, the rest-mass energy dominates and the dark fluid behaves as pressureless dark matter (P ≃0 , ɛ ∝a-3). We provide a simple analytical solution of the Friedmann equations for a universe undergoing a stiff matter era, a dark matter era, and a dark energy era due to the cosmological constant. This analytical solution generalizes the Einstein-de Sitter solution describing the dark matter era, and the Λ CDM model describing the dark matter era and the dark energy era. Historically, the possibility of a primordial stiff matter era first appeared in the cosmological model of Zel'dovich where the primordial universe is assumed to be made of a cold gas of baryons. A primordial stiff matter era also occurs in recent cosmological models where dark matter is made of relativistic self-gravitating Bose-Einstein condensates (BECs). When the internal energy of the dark fluid mimicking stiff matter is positive, the primordial universe is singular like in the standard big bang theory. It expands from an initial state with a vanishing scale factor and an infinite density. We consider the possibility that the internal energy of the dark fluid is negative (while, of course, its total energy density is positive), so that it mimics anti-stiff matter. This happens, for example, when the BECs have an attractive self-interaction with a negative scattering length. In that case, the primordial universe is nonsingular and bouncing like in loop quantum cosmology. At t =0 , the scale factor is finite and the energy density is equal to zero. The universe first has a phantom behavior where the energy density increases with the scale factor, then a normal behavior where the energy density decreases with the scale factor. For the sake of generality, we consider a cosmological constant of arbitrary sign. When the cosmological constant is positive, the Universe asymptotically reaches a de Sitter regime where the scale factor increases exponentially rapidly with time. This can account for the accelerating expansion of the Universe that we observe at present. When the cosmological constant is negative (anti-de Sitter), the evolution of the Universe is cyclic. Therefore, depending on the sign of the internal energy of the dark fluid and on the sign of the cosmological constant, we obtain analytical solutions of the Friedmann equations describing singular and nonsingular expanding, bouncing, or cyclic universes.

  19. Bending stiffness of conical and standard external fixator pins.

    PubMed

    Oni, O O; Capper, M; Soutis, C

    1993-10-01

    The bending stiffnesses of a conical and a standard external fixator pin have been compared. The pins were inserted into pilot holes in a piece of teak hardwood and loads of different magnitudes were applied at a fixed moment arm. Force-deflection curves were obtained for each pin, and stiffness (newtons per metre) and percentage stiffness reduction were calculated for each pilot hole size. The results show that deflection increased (i.e. stiffness decreased) with increasing force or diameter of pilot hole. This loss of stiffness was linear for the standard pin but was bimodal for the conical pin. PMID:8286671

  20. Extreme damping in composite materials with negative-stiffness inclusions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lakes, R. S.; Lee, T.; Bersie, A.; Wang, Y. C.

    2001-03-01

    When a force deforms an elastic object, practical experience suggests that the resulting displacement will be in the same direction as the force. This property is known as positive stiffness. Less familiar is the concept of negative stiffness, where the deforming force and the resulting displacement are in opposite directions. (Negative stiffness is distinct from negative Poisson's ratio, which refers to the occurrence of lateral expansion upon stretching an object.) Negative stiffness can occur, for example, when the deforming object has stored (or is supplied with) energy. This property is usually unstable, but it has been shown theoretically that inclusions of negative stiffness can be stabilized within a positive-stiffness matrix. Here we describe the experimental realization of this composite approach by embedding negative-stiffness inclusions of ferroelastic vanadium dioxide in a pure tin matrix. The resulting composites exhibit extreme mechanical damping and large anomalies in stiffness, as a consequence of the high local strains that result from the inclusions deforming more than the composite as a whole. Moreover, for certain temperature ranges, the negative-stiffness inclusions are more effective than diamond inclusions for increasing the overall composite stiffness. We expect that such composites could be useful as high damping materials, as stiff structural elements or for actuator-type applications.

  1. Increased left atrial size is associated with reduced atrial stiffness and preserved reservoir function in athlete's heart.

    PubMed

    D'Ascenzi, Flavio; Pelliccia, Antonio; Natali, Benedetta Maria; Cameli, Matteo; Andrei, Valentina; Incampo, Eufemia; Alvino, Federico; Lisi, Matteo; Padeletti, Margherita; Focardi, Marta; Bonifazi, Marco; Mondillo, Sergio

    2015-04-01

    Left atrial (LA) fibrosis with increased stiffness has been assumed to be the substrates for occurrence of atrial arrhythmias in athletes. However, this hypothesis has not yet been confirmed in humans. Aim of this study was, therefore, to assess LA remodeling and stiffness in competitive athletes. 150 competitive athletes and 90 age and sex-matched sedentary subjects were analyzed by speckle-tracking echocardiography to measure peak atrial longitudinal strain (PALS) and peak atrial contraction strain (PACS). LA stiffness was determined using E/e' ratio in conjunction with PALS. Left ventricular (LV) stiffness was also calculated. LA volume index was greater in athletes as compared with controls (24.6 7.3 vs. 18.4 7.8 mL/m(2), p < .0001). LA PALS, LA PACS, and E/e' ratio were lower in athletes in comparison with controls (p < .05, p ? .001, and p < .0001, respectively). Despite greater LA size, competitive athletes had lower LA stiffness as compared with controls (0.13 0.04 vs. 0.16 0.06, p ? .001). In addition, LV stiffness was lower in athletes (0.84 0.27 vs. 1.07 0.46, p ? .001). The only independent predictor of LA stiffness was LV stiffness (? = 0.46, p < .0001), while the only independent predictor of LA volume index was LV end-systolic volume index (? = 0.25, p = .002). Competitive athletes showed greater LA size associated with lower stiffness as compared with controls. Thus, LA remodeling in the context of the athlete's heart is not associated with increased LA stiffness. These findings support the benign nature of LA remodeling in athletes, occurring as a physiological adaptation to exercise conditioning. PMID:25627780

  2. Normal stiffness calibration of microfabricated tri-layer conducting polymer actuators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alici, Gursel; Higgins, Michael J.

    2009-06-01

    This paper reports on the stiffness characterization of microfabricated tri-layer conducting polymer (PPy) actuators. The rectangular, polypyrrole microactuators, which could operate both in aqueous and non-aqueous media, were fabricated using an excimer laser ablation technique that provided high throughput production and did not require cleanroom facilities. The microactuators were fixed at one end with electrical contacts and the other was end free to act as an electroactive microcantilever beam. An atomic force microscope (AFM) was used to measure the microactuator deflection under a range of normal forces applied by the AFM cantilever. A modified reference spring constant calibration method was employed to determine the stiffness constants of the microactuators. The stiffness of the microactuators in the electroactive (electrically stimulated) and passive state (no stimulation) were evaluated separately and compared. In doing so, the study presents results leading to the stiffness characterization of the first air-operated polymer microactuators and implementation of a simple, reliable and effective method for directly measuring the spring constant of polymer microactuators. This method is an alternative to the use of mechanical modeling methods, which can be difficult to implement for multi-layer (composite) polymer actuators. Importantly, our results highlight several requirements for using the reference spring method to accurately determine stiffness values of any microcantilever generally fabricated from soft, deformable materials.

  3. An Integrated Indenter-ARFI Imaging System for Tissue Stiffness Quantification

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Liang; Palmeri, Mark L.; Bouchard, Richard R.; Nightingale, Roger W.; Nightingale, Kathryn R.

    2008-01-01

    The goal of this work is to develop and characterize an integrated indenter-ARFI (acoustic radiation force impulse) imaging system. This system is capable of acquiring matched datasets of ARFI images and stiffness profiles from ex vivo tissue samples, which will facilitate correlation of ARFI images of tissue samples with independently-characterized material properties. For large and homogeneous samples, the indenter can be used to measure the Young's moduli by using Boussinesq's solution for a load on the surface of a semi-infinite isotropic elastic medium. Experiments and finite element method (FEM) models were designed to determine the maximum indentation depth and minimum sample size for accurate modulus reconstruction using this solution. Applying these findings, indentation measurements were performed on three calibrated commercial tissue-mimicking phantoms and the results were in good agreement with the calibrated stiffness. For heterogeneous tissue samples, indentation can be used independently to characterize relative stiffness variation across the sample surface, which can then be used to validate the stiffness variation in registered ARFI images. Tests were performed on heterogeneous phantoms and freshly-excised colon cancer specimens to detect the relative stiffness and lesion sizes using the combined system. Normalized displacement curves across the lesion surface were calculated and compared. Good agreement of the lesion profiles was observed between indentation and ARFI imaging. PMID:18939611

  4. Arterial stiffness in adult patients after Fontan procedure

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Increased arterial stiffness is a risk factor of atherosclerosis and cardio-vascular complications. The aim of the study was to determine whether peripheral vascular function might be an early marker of impaired health status in patients with a single ventricle after Fontan procedure. Methods and results Twenty five consecutive adults (11 women and 14 men) aged 24.7 ± 6.2 years after the Fontan procedure and 25 sex, age and BMI match healthy volunteers underwent physical examination, blood analysis, transthoracic echocardiography and noninvasive assessment of aortic stiffness. Augmented pressure and Augmentation Index (AIx) were both significantly elevated in Fontan when compared to the controls (6,08 ± 0,7 vs. 2,0 ± 3,7; p = 0.002 and 17,01 ± 3,3 vs. 6,05 ± 11; p < 0.001, respectively). There were no differences in pulse wave velocity (PWV), mean blood pressure (BP), brachial pulse pressure (PP), central: systolic BP, diastolic BP and PP. In Fontan group we find negative correlation between PWV and SatO2 (r = −0.68; p = 0.04) and positive correlation with WBC (0.72; p = 0.72; p = 0.013), INR (0.81; p = 0.008), TNFα (r = 0.45; p = 0.04), and postoperative time (r = 0.77; p = 0.02). AIx correlates positively only with age at surgery (r = 0.45; p = 0.04). Bilirubin level correlates positively with brachial PP (r = 0.71; p = 0.02) and central PP (r = 0.68; p = 0.03). The multivariate model showed that SatO2 (β = −0.44, p = 0.04) was the only independent predictor of PWV (R2 = 0.32, p = 0.03). Conclusion Adult Fontan patients have an increased arterial stiffness assessed by a noninvasive technique. Low arterial oxygen saturation postoperative time, age at surgery, white blood cells, TNFα and bilirubin level are associated with arterial stiffening in these patients. The combination of blood parameters of the hepatic function and noninvasive measurements of arterial stiffness could be helpful in comprehensive care of patients with Fontan circulation. PMID:24716671

  5. The effect of substrate stiffness, thickness, and cross-linking density on osteogenic cell behavior.

    PubMed

    Mullen, Conleth A; Vaughan, Ted J; Billiar, Kristen L; McNamara, Laoise M

    2015-04-01

    Osteogenic cells respond to mechanical changes in their environment by altering their spread area, morphology, and gene expression profile. In particular, the bulk modulus of the substrate, as well as its microstructure and thickness, can substantially alter the local stiffness experienced by the cell. Although bone tissue regeneration strategies involve culture of bone cells on various biomaterial scaffolds, which are often cross-linked to enhance their physical integrity, it is difficult to ascertain and compare the local stiffness experienced by cells cultured on different biomaterials. In this study, we seek to characterize the local stiffness at the cellular level for MC3T3-E1 cells plated on biomaterial substrates of varying modulus, thickness, and cross-linking concentration. Cells were cultured on flat and wedge-shaped gels made from polyacrylamide or cross-linked collagen. The cross-linking density of the collagen gels was varied to investigate the effect of fiber cross-linking in conjunction with substrate thickness. Cell spread area was used as a measure of osteogenic differentiation. Finite element simulations were used to examine the effects of fiber cross-linking and substrate thickness on the resistance of the gel to cellular forces, corresponding to the equivalent shear stiffness for the gel structure in the region directly surrounding the cell. The results of this study show that MC3T3 cells cultured on a soft fibrous substrate attain the same spread cell area as those cultured on a much higher modulus, but nonfibrous substrate. Finite element simulations predict that a dramatic increase in the equivalent shear stiffness of fibrous collagen gels occurs as cross-linking density is increased, with equivalent stiffness also increasing as gel thickness is decreased. These results provide an insight into the response of osteogenic cells to individual substrate parameters and have the potential to inform future bone tissue regeneration strategies that can optimize the equivalent stiffness experienced by a cell. PMID:25863052

  6. On waveguide modeling of stiff piano strings

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ducasse, ric

    2005-09-01

    Bensa et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 114, 1095-1107 (2003), Sec. IV] recently proposed a waveguide model for the transverse displacement of a stiff piano string. The study described here is an attempt to cast a complementary light on this topic, based on a common wave approach instead of a modal approach. A pair of weakly attenuated traveling waves and a pair of fast-decaying waves both satisfy the one-dimensional wave equation developed by Bensa et al. These solutions have to be carefully considered, however, for portions of string interacting with the hammer felt, the bridge, or the capo d'astro bar.

  7. Stiffness and thermoelastic coefficients for composite laminates

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noor, Ahmed K.; Tenek, Lazarus H.

    1992-01-01

    Simple analytic expressions are presented for the stiffness and thermoelastic coefficients of composite laminates in terms of the material properties of the individual layers. Expressions for the derivatives of the various coefficients with respect to each of the material properties and fiber orientation angles are also included. For typical high-performance composites, numerical values are given showing the effects of the stacking sequence and the fiber orientation angle of quasi-isotropic and angle-ply laminates on the values of the various coefficients and their sensitivity derivatives. The expressions for the thermoelastic coefficients and the sensitivity derivatives are given herein for the first time.

  8. POST-TRAUMATIC STIFFNESS OF THE ELBOW

    PubMed Central

    Filh, Geraldo Motta; Galvão, Marcus Vinicius

    2015-01-01

    Elbow stiffness is a common problem after joint trauma, causing functional impairment of the upper limb. The severity of the dysfunction depends on the nature of the initial trauma and the treatment used. Appropriate clinical evaluation and complementary examinations are essential for therapeutic planning. Several surgical techniques are now available and the recommendation must be made in accordance with patient characteristics, degree of joint limitation and the surgeon's skill. Joint incongruence and degeneration have negative effects on the prognosis, but heterotrophic ossification alone has been correlated with a favorable surgical prognosis.

  9. Fatigue, Vertical Leg Stiffness, and Stiffness Control Strategies in Males and Females

    PubMed Central

    Padua, Darin A; Arnold, Brent L; Perrin, David H; Gansneder, Bruce M; Carcia, Christopher R; Granata, Kevin P

    2006-01-01

    Context: Fatigue appears to influence musculoskeletal injury rates during athletic activities, but whether males and females respond differently to fatigue is unknown. Objective: To determine the influence of fatigue on vertical leg stiffness (K VERT) and muscle activation and joint movement strategies and whether healthy males and females respond similarly to fatigue. Design: Repeated-measures design with all data collected during a single laboratory session. Setting: Laboratory. Patients or Other Participants: Physically active males (n = 11) and females (n = 10). Intervention(s): Subjects performed hopping protocols at 2 frequencies before and after fatigue, which was induced by repeated squatting at submaximal loads. Main Outcome Measure(s): We measured K VERT with a forceplate and peak muscle activity of the quadriceps, hamstrings, gastrocnemius, soleus, and anterior tibialis muscles with surface electromyography. Sagittal-plane kinematics at the knee and ankle were recorded with an electrogoniometer. Results: After fatigue, K VERT was unchanged for all subjects. However, both males and females demonstrated reduced peak hamstrings ( P = .002) and anterior tibialis ( P = .001) activation, coupled with increased gastrocnemius ( P = .005) and soleus ( P = .001) peak activity, as well as increased quadriceps-hamstrings ( P = .005) and gastrocnemius/soleus-anterior tibialis coactivation ratios ( P = .03) after fatigue. Overall, females demonstrated greater quadriceps-hamstrings coactivation ratios than males, regardless of the fatigue condition ( P = .026). Only females showed increased knee flexion at initial contact after fatigue during hopping ( P = .03). Conclusions: Although K VERT was unaffected, the peak muscle activation and joint movement strategies used to modulate K VERT were affected after fatigue. Once fatigued, both males and females used an ankle-dominant strategy, with greater reliance on the ankle musculature and less on the knee musculature. Also, once fatigued, all subjects used an antagonist inhibition strategy by minimizing antagonist coactivation. Overall, females used a more quadriceps-dominant strategy than males, showing greater quadriceps activity and a larger quadriceps-hamstrings coactivation ratio. Changes in muscle activation and coactivation ratios because of fatigue and sex are suggested to alter knee joint stability and increase anterior cruciate ligament injury risk. PMID:17043698

  10. The LSM1-7 Complex Differentially Regulates Arabidopsis Tolerance to Abiotic Stress Conditions by Promoting Selective mRNA Decapping.

    PubMed

    Perea-Resa, Carlos; Carrasco-Lpez, Cristian; Catal, Rafael; Ture?kov, Veronika; Novak, Ondrej; Zhang, Weiping; Sieburth, Leslie; Jimnez-Gmez, Jos Manuel; Salinas, Julio

    2016-02-01

    In eukaryotes, the decapping machinery is highly conserved and plays an essential role in controlling mRNA stability, a key step in the regulation of gene expression. Yet, the role of mRNA decapping in shaping gene expression profiles in response to environmental cues and the operating molecular mechanisms are poorly understood. Here, we provide genetic and molecular evidence that a component of the decapping machinery, the LSM1-7 complex, plays a critical role in plant tolerance to abiotic stresses. Our results demonstrate that, depending on the stress, the complex from Arabidopsis thaliana interacts with different selected stress-inducible transcripts targeting them for decapping and subsequent degradation. This interaction ensures the correct turnover of the target transcripts and, consequently, the appropriate patterns of downstream stress-responsive gene expression that are required for plant adaptation. Remarkably, among the selected target transcripts of the LSM1-7 complex are those encoding NCED3 and NCED5, two key enzymes in abscisic acid (ABA) biosynthesis. We demonstrate that the complex modulates ABA levels in Arabidopsis exposed to cold and high salt by differentially controlling NCED3 and NCED5 mRNA turnover, which represents a new layer of regulation in ABA biosynthesis in response to abiotic stress. Our findings uncover an unanticipated functional plasticity of the mRNA decapping machinery to modulate the relationship between plants and their environment. PMID:26764377

  11. Effects of implant stiffness, shape, and medialization depth on the acoustic outcomes of medialization laryngoplasty

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhaoyan; Chhetri, Dinesh K.; Bergeron, Jennifer L.

    2014-01-01

    Objective Medialization laryngoplasty is commonly used to treat glottic insufficiency. In this study, we investigated the effects of implant stiffness (Young’s modulus), medialization depth, and implant medial surface shape on acoustic outcomes. Study Design Basic science study using ex vivo laryngeal phonation model. Methods In an ex vivo human larynx phonation model, bilateral medialization laryngoplasties were performed with implants of varying stiffness, medial surface shape (rectangular, divergent and convergent), and varying depths of medialization. The subglottal pressure, the flow rate, and the outside sound were measured as the implant parameters were varied. Results Medialization through the use of implants generally improved the harmonic-to-noise ratio (HNR) and the number of harmonics excited in the outside sound spectra. The degree of acoustic improvement depended on the implant insertion depth, stiffness, and to a lesser degree implant shape. Varying implant insertion depth led to large variations in phonation for stiff implants, but had much smaller effects for soft implants. Conclusions Implants with stiffness comparable to vocal folds provided more consistent improvement in acoustic outcomes across different implant conditions. Further investigations are required to better understand the underlying mechanisms. PMID:25499519

  12. Matrix stiffness determines the fate of nucleus pulposus-derived stem cells.

    PubMed

    Navaro, Yosi; Bleich-Kimelman, Nadav; Hazanov, Lena; Mironi-Harpaz, Iris; Shachaf, Yonatan; Garty, Shai; Smith, Yoav; Pelled, Gadi; Gazit, Dan; Seliktar, Dror; Gazit, Zulma

    2015-05-01

    Intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration and consequent low-back pain present a major medical challenge. Nucleus pulposus-derived stem cells (NP-SCs) may lead to a novel therapy for this severe disease. It was recently shown that survival and function of mature NP cells are regulated in part by tissue stiffness. We hypothesized that modification of matrix stiffness will influence the ability of cultured NP-SCs to proliferate, survive, and differentiate into mature NP cells. NP-SCs were subcultured in three-dimensional matrices of varying degrees of stiffness as measured by the material's shear storage modulus. Cell survival, activity, and rate of differentiation toward the chondrogenic or osteogenic lineage were analyzed. NP-SCs were found to proliferate and differentiate in all matrices, irrespective of matrix stiffness. However, matrices with a low shear storage modulus (G' = 1 kPa) promoted significantly more proliferation and chondrogenic differentiation, whereas matrices with a high modulus (G' = 2 kPa) promoted osteogenic differentiation. Imaging performed via confocal and scanning electron microscopes validated cell survival and highlighted stiffness-dependent cell-matrix interactions. These results underscore the effect of the matrix modulus on the fate of NP-SCs. This research may facilitate elucidation of the complex cross-talk between NP-SCs and their surrounding matrix in healthy as well as pathological conditions. PMID:25725556

  13. Strength and stiffness of uniaxially tensioned reinforced concrete panels subjected to membrane shear

    SciTech Connect

    Hilmy, S.I.; White, R.N.; Gergely, P.

    1982-06-01

    This report addresses four major topics in the general area of cracking and shear effects in concrete containment structures: (a) extensional stiffness of orthogonally reinforced flat concrete specimens subjected to tension in one direction only, (b) shear strength and shear stiffness of these same specimens when subjected to combined uniaxial tension and shear, (c) development of a preliminary analytical model for the prediction of the initial shear modulus and its degradation with increasing uniaxial tension levels, and (d) a comparative correlation of experimental results with results from earlier studies on similar specimens and on other types of shear specimens tested in many different laboratories. Eleven specimens with two-way orthogonal reinforcement were tested. Test parameters included the applied tension level (0, 0.3f/sub y/, 0.6f/sub y/, and 0.9f/sub y/), type of shear loading (monotonic and reversed cyclic), and level of applied shear stress. Prior to application of shear loading, measurements of extensional stiffness were conducted at reinforcing tension levels up to 0.6f/sub y/, and empirical expressions for crack width and extensional stiffness were derived. Stiffness degradation produced by subsequent shear loadings was also assessed.

  14. Serum adiponectin is a negative predictor of central arterial stiffness in kidney transplant patients.

    PubMed

    Ho, Ching-Chun; Hsu, Bang-Gee; Yin, Wen-Yao; Ho, Guan-Jin; Chen, Yen-Cheng; Lee, Ming-Che

    2016-05-01

    Background The role of adiponectin in arterial stiffness and its relationship to cardiovascular disease is not fully demonstrated and needs further elaboration. In this study, the association between adiponectin level and arterial stiffness is studied among kidney transplant patients. Material and methods Anthropometric data and biochemical data including fasting glucose, lipid profile, renal function and serum adiponectin were determined in 55 kidney transplant patients. Central arterial stiffness was measured and presented by carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity. Results Univariate linear analysis showed that body weight, waist circumference, brachial pulse pressure and body mass index were correlated positively with carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity in this patient group. However, logarithmically transformed adiponectin level (log-adiponectin) correlated negatively with carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity. In multivariate regression analysis of factors significantly associated with carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity, it showed that both log-adiponectin (β = -0.427; R(2) = 0.205, p = 0.001) and body weight (β = 0.327; R(2 )=( )0.106, p = 0.007) were independently predictive of central arterial stiffness. Conclusion Our study suggests that fasting serum adiponectin is negatively associated with carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity, hence arterial stiffness, in kidney transplant patients. PMID:26962760

  15. Animals prefer leg stiffness values that may reduce the energetic cost of locomotion.

    PubMed

    Shen, ZhuoHua; Seipel, Justin

    2015-01-01

    Despite the neuromechanical complexity and wide diversity of running animals, most run with a center-of-mass motion that is similar to a simple mass bouncing on a spring. Further, when animals? effective leg stiffness is measured and normalized for size and weight, the resulting relative leg stiffness that most animals prefer lies in a narrow range between 7 and 27. Understanding why this nearly universal preference exists could shed light on how whole animal behaviors are organized. Here we show that the biologically preferred values of relative leg stiffness coincide with a theoretical minimal energetic cost of locomotion. This result strongly implies that animals select and regulate leg stiffness in order to reduce the energy required to move, thus providing animals an energetic advantage. This result also helps explain how high level control targets such as energy efficiency might influence overall physiological parameters and the underlying neuromechanics that produce it. Overall, the theory presented here provides an explanation for the existence of a nearly universal preferred leg stiffness. Also, the results of this work are beneficial for understanding the principles underlying human and animal locomotion, as well as for the development of prosthetic, orthotic and robotic devices. PMID:25234232

  16. Massage induces an immediate, albeit short-term, reduction in muscle stiffness.

    PubMed

    Eriksson Crommert, M; Lacourpaille, L; Heales, L J; Tucker, K; Hug, F

    2015-10-01

    Using ultrasound shear wave elastography, the aims of this study were: (a) to evaluate the effect of massage on stiffness of the medial gastrocnemius (MG) muscle and (b) to determine whether this effect (if any) persists over a short period of rest. A 7-min massage protocol was performed unilaterally on MG in 18 healthy volunteers. Measurements of muscle shear elastic modulus (stiffness) were performed bilaterally (control and massaged leg) in a moderately stretched position at three time points: before massage (baseline), directly after massage (follow-up 1), and following 3 min of rest (follow-up 2). Directly after massage, participants rated pain experienced during the massage. MG shear elastic modulus of the massaged leg decreased significantly at follow-up 1 (-5.2 ± 8.8%, P = 0.019, d = -0.66). There was no difference between follow-up 2 and baseline for the massaged leg (P = 0.83) indicating that muscle stiffness returned to baseline values. Shear elastic modulus was not different between time points in the control leg. There was no association between perceived pain during the massage and stiffness reduction (r = 0.035; P = 0.89). This is the first study to provide evidence that massage reduces muscle stiffness. However, this effect is short lived and returns to baseline values quickly after cessation of the massage. PMID:25487283

  17. A comparative study of piezoelectric unimorph and multilayer actuators as stiffness sensors via contact resonance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, Ji; Li, Fa-Xin

    2015-12-01

    Piezoelectric bar-shaped resonators were proposed to act as hardness sensors in the 1960s and stiffness sensors in the 1990s based on the contact impedance method. In this work, we point out that both multilayer and unimorph (or bimorph) piezoelectric actuators could act as stiffness/modulus sensors based on the principle of mechanical contact resonance. First, the practical design and the performance of a piezoelectric unimorph actuator-based stiffness sensor were presented. Then the working principle of piezoelectric multilayer actuator-based stiffness sensors was given and verified by numerical investigation. It was found that for these two types of resonance-based sensors, the shift of the resonance frequency due to contact is always positive, which is different from that of the contact impedance method. Further comparative sensitivity study indicated that the unimorph actuator-based stiffness sensor is very suitable for measurement on soft materials, whereas the multilayer actuator-based sensor is more suitable for hard materials.

  18. Role of Reflex Dynamics in Spinal Stability: Intrinsic Muscle Stiffness Alone is Insufficient for Stability

    PubMed Central

    Moorhouse, Kevin M.; Granata, Kevin P.

    2006-01-01

    Spinal stability is related to both the intrinsic stiffness of active muscle as well as neuromuscular reflex response. However, existing analyses of spinal stability ignore the role of the reflex response, focusing solely on the intrinsic muscle stiffness associated with voluntary activation patterns in the torso musculature. The goal of this study was to empirically characterize the role of reflex components of spinal stability during voluntary trunk extension exertions. Pseudorandom position perturbations of the torso and associated driving forces were recorded in 11 healthy adults. Nonlinear systems-identification analyses of the measured data provided an estimate of total systems dynamics that explained 81% of the movement variability. Proportional intrinsic response was less than zero in more than 60% of the trials, e.g. mean value of PINT during the 20% maximum voluntary exertion trunk extension exertions 415354 N/m. The negative value indicated that the intrinsic muscle stiffness was not sufficient to stabilize the spine without reflex response. Reflexes accounted for 42% of the total stabilizing trunk stiffness. Both intrinsic and reflex components of stiffness increased significantly with trunk extension effort. Results reveal that reflex dynamics are a necessary component in the stabilizing control of spinal stability. PMID:16782106

  19. Multicomponent supplement containing Chlorella decreases arterial stiffness in healthy young men

    PubMed Central

    Otsuki, Takeshi; Shimizu, Kazuhiro; Iemitsu, Motoyuki; Kono, Ichiro

    2013-01-01

    Chlorella, a unicellular green alga, contains various antioxidants and other nutrients such as amino acids and fiber. Previous studies have reported that supplementation with multiple antioxidants reduces arterial stiffness, a well-established cardiovascular risk factor. We investigated the effects of Chlorella intake on arterial stiffness using a single-blinded, placebo-controlled crossover study design. Fourteen young men took placebo or Chlorella tablets for four weeks, with a 12-week washout period between trials, in a randomized order. Before and after each trial, blood pressure, heart rate, and brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity, an index of arterial stiffness, were measured. Treatment compliance was comparable between the two groups. There were no differences in blood pressure and heart rate before and after supplementation in both the placebo and Chlorella groups. Brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity decreased after Chlorella intake (before vs after intake; 11.60.2 vs 11.10.1m/s, p=0.01), but not after placebo intake (11.40.2 vs 11.40.2m/s, p=0.98). Multicomponent analysis of the Chlorella-containing tablet detected nutrients that can reduce arterial stiffness, such as antioxidant vitamins, arginine, potassium, calcium, and n-3 unsaturated fatty acids. These results suggest that intake of a Chlorella-containing multicomponent supplement can decrease arterial stiffness. PMID:24249971

  20. Quantitative characterization of adhesion and stiffness of corneal lens of Drosophila melanogaster using atomic force microscopy.

    PubMed

    Lavanya Devi, A L; Nongthomba, Upendra; Bobji, M S

    2016-01-01

    Atomic force Microscopy (AFM) has become a versatile tool in biology due to its advantage of high-resolution imaging of biological samples close to their native condition. Apart from imaging, AFM can also measure the local mechanical properties of the surfaces. In this study, we explore the possibility of using AFM to quantify the rough eye phenotype of Drosophila melanogaster through mechanical properties. We have measured adhesion force, stiffness and elastic modulus of the corneal lens using AFM. Various parameters affecting these measurements like cantilever stiffness and tip geometry are systematically studied and the measurement procedures are standardized. Results show that the mean adhesion force of the ommatidial surface varies from 36 nN to 16 nN based on the location. The mean stiffness is 483 5 N/m, and the elastic modulus is 3.4 0.05 GPa (95% confidence level) at the center of ommatidia. These properties are found to be different in corneal lens of eye expressing human mutant tau gene (mutant). The adhesion force, stiffness and elastic modulus are decreased in the mutant. We conclude that the measurement of surface and mechanical properties of D. melanogaster using AFM can be used for quantitative evaluation of 'rough eye' surface. PMID:26327451

  1. STIFF: Converting Scientific FITS Images to TIFF

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertin, Emmanuel

    2011-10-01

    STIFF is a program that converts scientific FITS1 images to the more popular TIFF2 format for illustration purposes. Most FITS readers and converters do not do a proper job at converting FITS image data to 8 bits. 8-bit images stored in JPEG, PNG or TIFF files have the intensities implicitely stored in a non-linear way. Most current FITS image viewers and converters provide the user an incorrect translation of the FITS image content by simply rescaling linearly input pixel values. A first consequence is that the people working on astronomical images usually have to apply narrow intensity cuts or square-root or logarithmic intensity transformations to actually see something on their deep-sky images. A less obvious consequence is that colors obtained by combining images processed this way are not consistent across such a large range of surface brightnesses. Though with other software the user is generally afforded a choice of nonlinear transformations to apply in order to make the faint stuff stand out more clearly in the images, with the limited selection of choices provides, colors will not be accurately rendered, and some manual tweaking will be necessary. The purpose of STIFF is to produce beautiful pictures in an automatic and consistent way.

  2. Applicability and accuracy improvement of transient elastography using the M and XL probes by experienced operators.

    PubMed

    Carrin, J A; Puigveh, M; Coll, S; Garcia-Retortillo, M; Caete, N; Fernndez, R; Mrquez, C; Gimnez, M D; Garcia, M; Bory, F; Sol, R

    2015-03-01

    Transient elastography (TE) is the reference method to obtain liver stiffness measurements (LSM), but no results are obtained in 3.1% and unreliable in 15.8%. We assessed the applicability and diagnostic accuracy of TE re-evaluation using M and XL probes. From March 2011 to April 2012 868 LSM were performed with the M probe by trained operators (50-500 studies) (LSM1). Measurements were categorized as inadequate (no values or ratio <60% and/or IQR/LSM >30%) or adequate. Inadequate LSM1 were re-evaluated by experienced operators (>500 explorations) (LSM2) and inadequate LSM2 using XL probe (LSMXL). Inadequate LSM1 were obtained in 187 (21.5%) patients, IQR/LSM >30% in 97 (51%), ratio <60% in 24 (13%) and TE failed to obtain a measurement in 67 (36%). LSM2 achieved adequate registers in 123 (70%) of 175 registers previously considered as inadequate. Independent variables (OR, 95%CI) related to inadequate LSM1 were body mass index (1.11, 1.04-1.18), abdominal circumference (1.03, 1.01-1.06) and age (1.03, 1.01-1.04) and to inadequate LSM2 were skin-capsule distance (1.21, 1.09-1.34) and abdominal circumference (1.05, 1.01-1.10). The diagnostic accuracy (AUROC) to identify significant fibrosis improved from 0.89 (LSM1) to 0.91 (LSM2) (P = 0.046) in 334 patients with liver biopsy or clinically significant portal hypertension. A third evaluation (LSMXL) obtained adequate registers in 41 (93%) of 44 patients with inadequate LSM2. Operator experience increases the applicability and diagnostic accuracy of TE. The XL probe may be recommended for patients with inadequate values obtained by experienced operators using the M probe. http://clinicaltrials.gov (NCT01900808). PMID:25164560

  3. Clinical appraisal of arterial stiffness: the Argonauts in front of the Golden Fleece

    PubMed Central

    Vlachopoulos, C; Aznaouridis, K; Stefanadis, C

    2006-01-01

    Interest in evaluating arterial elastic properties has grown in parallel with the widespread availability of non‐invasive methods for assessing arterial stiffness. A clinically useful diagnostic index must be pathophysiologically relevant, must be readily measurable, and must indicate the severity of the disease and predict the corresponding risk. Interventional modification of this index must parallel disease regression and benefit prognosis. The current evidence for the clinical value of estimating arterial stiffness (mainly of large, elastic‐type arteries, such as the aorta and the carotids) in the contemporary era of cardiovascular medicine is reviewed. PMID:16339817

  4. Clinical appraisal of arterial stiffness: the Argonauts in front of the Golden Fleece.

    PubMed

    Vlachopoulos, C; Aznaouridis, K; Stefanadis, C

    2006-11-01

    Interest in evaluating arterial elastic properties has grown in parallel with the widespread availability of non-invasive methods for assessing arterial stiffness. A clinically useful diagnostic index must be pathophysiologically relevant, must be readily measurable, and must indicate the severity of the disease and predict the corresponding risk. Interventional modification of this index must parallel disease regression and benefit prognosis. The current evidence for the clinical value of estimating arterial stiffness (mainly of large, elastic-type arteries, such as the aorta and the carotids) in the contemporary era of cardiovascular medicine is reviewed. PMID:16339817

  5. Assessments of Arterial Stiffness and Endothelial Function Using Pulse Wave Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Stoner, Lee; Young, Joanna M.; Fryer, Simon

    2012-01-01

    Conventionally, the assessments of endothelial function and arterial stiffness require different sets of equipment, making the inclusion of both tests impractical for clinical and epidemiological studies. Pulse wave analysis (PWA) provides useful information regarding the mechanical properties of the arterial tree and can also be used to assess endothelial function. PWA is a simple, valid, reliable, and inexpensive technique, offering great clinical and epidemiological potential. The current paper will outline how to measure arterial stiffness and endothelial function using this technique and include discussion of validity and reliability. PMID:22666595

  6. Ambient Vibration Testing for Story Stiffness Estimation of a Heritage Timber Building

    PubMed Central

    Min, Kyung-Won; Kim, Junhee; Park, Sung-Ah; Park, Chan-Soo

    2013-01-01

    This paper investigates dynamic characteristics of a historic wooden structure by ambient vibration testing, presenting a novel estimation methodology of story stiffness for the purpose of vibration-based structural health monitoring. As for the ambient vibration testing, measured structural responses are analyzed by two output-only system identification methods (i.e., frequency domain decomposition and stochastic subspace identification) to estimate modal parameters. The proposed methodology of story stiffness is estimation based on an eigenvalue problem derived from a vibratory rigid body model. Using the identified natural frequencies, the eigenvalue problem is efficiently solved and uniquely yields story stiffness. It is noteworthy that application of the proposed methodology is not necessarily confined to the wooden structure exampled in the paper. PMID:24227999

  7. Somatic stiffness of cochlear outer hair cells is voltage-dependent

    PubMed Central

    He, David Z. Z.; Dallos, Peter

    1999-01-01

    The mammalian cochlea depends on an amplification process for its sensitivity and frequency-resolving capability. Outer hair cells are responsible for providing this amplification. It is usually assumed that the membranepotential-driven somatic shape changes of these cells are the basis of the amplifying process. It is of interest to see whether mechanical reactance changes of the cells might accompany their changes in cell shape. We now show that the cylindrical outer hair cells change their axial stiffness as their membrane potential is altered. Cell stiffness was determined by optoelectronically measuring the amplitude of motion of a flexible vibrating fiber as it was loaded by the isolated cell. Voltage commands to the cell were delivered in a tightseal wholecell configuration. Cell stiffness was decreased by depolarization and increased by hyperpolarization. PMID:10393976

  8. Ambient vibration testing for story stiffness estimation of a heritage timber building.

    PubMed

    Min, Kyung-Won; Kim, Junhee; Park, Sung-Ah; Park, Chan-Soo

    2013-01-01

    This paper investigates dynamic characteristics of a historic wooden structure by ambient vibration testing, presenting a novel estimation methodology of story stiffness for the purpose of vibration-based structural health monitoring. As for the ambient vibration testing, measured structural responses are analyzed by two output-only system identification methods (i.e., frequency domain decomposition and stochastic subspace identification) to estimate modal parameters. The proposed methodology of story stiffness is estimation based on an eigenvalue problem derived from a vibratory rigid body model. Using the identified natural frequencies, the eigenvalue problem is efficiently solved and uniquely yields story stiffness. It is noteworthy that application of the proposed methodology is not necessarily confined to the wooden structure exampled in the paper. PMID:24227999

  9. Position and Velocity Estimation for Two-Inertia System with Nonlinear Stiffness Based on Acceleration Sensor

    PubMed Central

    Nam, Kyung-Tae; Lee, Seung-Joon; Kuc, Tae-Yong; Kim, Hyungjong

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we consider the state estimation problem for flexible joint manipulators that involve nonlinear characteristics in their stiffness. The two key ideas of our design are that (a) an accelerometer is used in order that the estimation error dynamics do not depend on nonlinearities at the link part of the manipulators and (b) the model of the nonlinear stiffness is indeed a Lipschitz function. Based on the measured acceleration, we propose a nonlinear observer under the Lipschitz condition of the nonlinear stiffness. In addition, in order to effectively compensate for the estimation error, the gain of the proposed observer is chosen from the ARE (algebraic Riccati equations) which depend on the Lipschitz constant. Comparative experimental results verify the effectiveness of the proposed method. PMID:26729125

  10. Dynamic Stiffness and Damping Characteristics of a High-Temperature Air Foil Journal Bearing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howard, Samuel A.; DellaCorte, Christopher; Valco, Mark J.; Prahl, Joseph M.; Heshmat, Hooshang

    2001-01-01

    Using a high-temperature optically based displacement measurement system, a foil air bearing's stiffness and damping characteristics were experimentally determined. Results were obtained over a range of modified Sommerfeld Number from 1.5E6 to 1.5E7, and at temperatures from 25 to 538 C. An Experimental procedure was developed comparing the error in two curve fitting functions to reveal different modes of physical behavior throughout the operating domain. The maximum change in dimensionless stiffness was 3.0E-2 to 6.5E-2 over the Sommerfeld Number range tested. Stiffness decreased with temperature by as much as a factor of two from 25 to 538 C. Dimensionless damping was a stronger function of Sommerfeld Number ranging from 20 to 300. The temperature effect on damping being more qualitative, showed the damping mechanism shifted from viscous type damping to frictional type as temperature increased.

  11. Position and Velocity Estimation for Two-Inertia System with Nonlinear Stiffness Based on Acceleration Sensor.

    PubMed

    Nam, Kyung-Tae; Lee, Seung-Joon; Kuc, Tae-Yong; Kim, Hyungjong

    2015-01-01

    In this paper, we consider the state estimation problem for flexible joint manipulators that involve nonlinear characteristics in their stiffness. The two key ideas of our design are that (a) an accelerometer is used in order that the estimation error dynamics do not depend on nonlinearities at the link part of the manipulators and (b) the model of the nonlinear stiffness is indeed a Lipschitz function. Based on the measured acceleration, we propose a nonlinear observer under the Lipschitz condition of the nonlinear stiffness. In addition, in order to effectively compensate for the estimation error, the gain of the proposed observer is chosen from the ARE (algebraic Riccati equations) which depend on the Lipschitz constant. Comparative experimental results verify the effectiveness of the proposed method. PMID:26729125

  12. The Role of a Novel Arterial Stiffness Parameter, Cardio-Ankle Vascular Index (CAVI), as a Surrogate Marker for Cardiovascular Diseases.

    PubMed

    Saiki, Atsuhito; Sato, Yuta; Watanabe, Rena; Watanabe, Yasuhiro; Imamura, Haruki; Yamaguchi, Takashi; Ban, Noriko; Kawana, Hidetoshi; Nagumo, Ayako; Nagayama, Daiji; Ohira, Masahiro; Endo, Kei; Tatsuno, Ichiro

    2016-02-01

    Measurement of arterial stiffness in routine medical practice is important to assess the progression of arteriosclerosis. So far, many parameters have been proposed to quantitatively represent arterial stiffness. Among these, pulse wave velocity (PWV) has been most frequently applied to clinical medicine because those could be measured simply and non-invasively. PWV had established the usefulness of measuring arterial wall stiffness. However, PWV essentially depends on blood pressure at the time of measurement. Therefore, PWV is not appropriate as a parameter for the evaluation of arterial stiffness, particularly for the studies involving blood pressure changes.On the other hand, stiffness parameter ? is an index reflecting arterial stiffness without the influence of blood pressure. Recently, this parameter has been applied to develop a new arterial stiffness index called cardio-ankle vascular index (CAVI). Therefore, CAVI does not depend on blood pressure changes during the measurements; CAVI could represent the stiffness of the arterial tree from the origin of the aorta to the ankle.Many clinical studies obtained from CAVI are being accumulated. CAVI showed high value in arteriosclerotic diseases, such as coronary artery diseases, cerebral infarction, and chronic kidney diseases, and also in majority of people with various coronary risk factors. The improvement of those risk factors decreased CAVI. Furthermore, the role of CAVI as a predictor of cardio-vascular events was reported recently.We review the clinical studies on CAVI and discuss the clinical usefulness of CAVI as a candidate surrogate end-point marker for cardiovascular disease. PMID:26607350

  13. EFFECT OF PASSIVE HEAT STRESS ON ARTERIAL STIFFNESS

    PubMed Central

    Ganio, Matthew S.; Brothers, R. Matthew; Shibata, Shigeki; Hastings, Jeffrey L.; Crandall, Craig G.

    2011-01-01

    Arterial compliance, the inverse of arterial stiffness, is a prognostic indicator of arterial health. Central and peripheral arterial compliance decrease with acute cold stress and may increase post exercise when exercise-induced elevations in core temperature are likely still present. Increased blood flow through the conduit arteries associated with elevated core temperature increases shear stress which in turn releases nitric oxide and other endothelial derived factors. These changes, in conjunction with supportive in vitro data, suggest that elevated core temperature may indirectly increase central and peripheral arterial compliance (i.e., decrease arterial stiffness). The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that increased core temperature decreases central and peripheral arterial stiffness, as measured with pulse wave velocity (PWV). Using Doppler ultrasound, carotid-femoral (central) and carotid-radial (peripheral) arterial PWVs were measured from eight subjects (age 37 ± 11 years; mass 68.8 ± 11.1 kg; height 171 ± 3 cm) before and during passive heat-stress induced increases in core temperature of 0.47 ± 0.05, 1.03 ± 0.12, and 1.52 ± 0.07°C (i.e., baseline, 0.5, 1.0, and 1.5°C, respectively). Changes in PWV were evaluated with a one-way repeated measures ANOVA. When analyzed as group means, neither central (677 ± 161, 617 ± 72, 659 ± 74, and 766 ± 207 cm/s; P=0.12) nor peripheral (855 ± 192, 772 ± 95, 759 ± 49, and 858 ± 247 cm/s; P=0.56) PWV changed as core temperature increased from baseline to 0.5, 1.0, and 1.5°C, respectively. However, individual changes in central (average r = −0.89, P < 0.05) and peripheral (average r = −0.93, P < 0.05) PWV with heat stress were significantly correlated with normothermic baseline PWV. In conclusion, these data suggest that the magnitude by which heat stress reduced PWV was predicated upon normothermic PWV, with the individuals having the highest normothermic PWV being most responsive to the heat stress-induced reductions in PWV. PMID:21685446

  14. An improved spinning lens test to determine the stiffness of the human lens

    PubMed Central

    Burd, H.J.; Wilde, G.S.; Judge, S.J.

    2011-01-01

    It is widely accepted that age-related changes in lens stiffness are significant for the development of presbyopia. However, precise details on the relative importance of age-related changes in the stiffness of the lens, in comparison with other potential mechanisms for the development of presbyopia, have not yet been established. One contributing factor to this uncertainty is the paucity and variability of experimental data on lens stiffness. The available published data generally indicate that stiffness varies spatially within the lens and that stiffness parameters tend to increase with age. However, considerable differences exist between these published data sets, both qualitatively and quantitatively. The current paper describes new and improved methods, based on the spinning lens approach pioneered by Fisher, R.F. (1971) The elastic constants of the human lens, Journal of Physiology, 212, 147180, to make measurements on the stiffness of the human lens. These new procedures have been developed in an attempt to eliminate, or at least substantially reduce, various systematic errors in Fishers original experiment. An improved test rig has been constructed and a new modelling procedure for determining lens stiffness parameters from observations made during the test has been devised. The experiment involves mounting a human lens on a vertical rotor so that the lens spins on its optical axis (typically at 1000rpm). An automatic imaging system is used to capture the outline of the lens, while it is rotating, at pre-determined angular orientations. These images are used to quantify the deformations developed in the lens as a consequence of the centripetal forces induced by the rotation. Lens stiffness is inferred using axisymmetric finite element inverse analysis in which a nearly-incompressible neo-Hookean constitutive model is used to represent the mechanics of the lens. A numerical optimisation procedure is used to determine the stiffness parameters that provide a best fit between the finite element model and the experimental data. Sample results are presented for a human lens of age 33 years. PMID:21040722

  15. Postprandial effects on arterial stiffness parameters in healthy young adults.

    PubMed

    Murray, Tyler; Yang, Eric Y; Brunner, Gerd; Kumar, Anirudh; Lakkis, Nasser; Misra, Arunima; Virani, Salim S; Hartley, Craig J; Morrisett, Joel D; Ballantyne, Christie M; Nambi, Vijay

    2015-12-01

    Postprandial lipemia has been associated with acute endothelial dysfunction. Endothelial dysfunction, in turn, is associated with increased arterial stiffness. However, the relationship between postprandial lipemia and acute changes in arterial stiffness has not been extensively investigated. Therefore, we conducted a pilot study on the effects of postprandial lipemia on arterial stiffness in 19 healthy young adults before and after consumption of a high-fat mixed meal. Arterial stiffness was assessed locally with echo-tracking carotid arterial strain (CAS) and globally with carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV). As assessed by these two benchmark parameters, arterial stiffness did not differ significantly postprandially. However, the arterial distension period (ADP) was significantly lower 2 hours after mixed meal ingestion. In addition, slopes of carotid artery area (CAA) curves were significantly steeper postprandially. Therefore, we concluded that ADP may be a more sensitive marker of arterial stiffness in healthy young adults when compared to PWV and CAS. PMID:26060082

  16. Effect of end-ring stiffness on buckling of pressure-loaded stiffened conical shells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, R. C.; Williams, J. G.

    1977-01-01

    Buckling studies were conducted on truncated 120 deg conical shells having large end rings and many interior reinforcing rings that are typical of aeroshells used as spacecraft decelerators. Changes in base-end-ring stiffness were accomplished by simply machining away a portion of the base ring between successive buckling tests. Initial imperfection measurements from the test cones were included in the analytical model.

  17. Acetabular shell deformation as a function of shell stiffness and bone strength.

    PubMed

    Dold, Philipp; Pandorf, Thomas; Flohr, Markus; Preuss, Roman; Bone, Martin C; Joyce, Tom J; Holland, James; Deehan, David

    2016-04-01

    Press-fit acetabular shells used for hip replacement rely upon an interference fit with the bone to provide initial stability. This process may result in deformation of the shell. This study aimed to model shell deformation as a process of shell stiffness and bone strength. A cohort of 32 shells with two different wall thicknesses (3 and 4 mm) and 10 different shell sizes (44- to 62-mm outer diameter) were implanted into eight cadavers. Shell deformation was then measured in the cadavers using a previously validated ATOS Triple Scan III optical system. The shell-bone interface was then considered as a spring system according to Hooke's law and from this the force exerted on the shell by the bone was calculated using a combined stiffness consisting of the measured shell stiffness and a calculated bone stiffness. The median radial stiffness for the 3-mm wall thickness was 4192 N/mm (range, 2920-6257 N/mm), while for the 4-mm wall thickness the median was 9633 N/mm (range, 6875-14,341 N/mm). The median deformation was 48 µm (range, 3-187 µm), while the median force was 256 N (range, 26-916 N). No statistically significant correlation was found between shell stiffness and deformation. Deformation was also found to be not fully symmetric (centres 180° apart), with a median angle discrepancy of 11.5° between the two maximum positive points of deformation. Further work is still required to understand how the bone influences acetabular shell deformation. PMID:26888887

  18. Vascular endothelium-derived factors and arterial stiffness in strength- and endurance-trained men.

    PubMed

    Otsuki, Takeshi; Maeda, Seiji; Iemitsu, Motoyuki; Saito, Yoko; Tanimura, Yuko; Ajisaka, Ryuichi; Miyauchi, Takashi

    2007-02-01

    Arterial stiffness is higher in strength-trained humans and lower in endurance-trained humans. However, the mechanisms underlying these different adaptations are unclear. Vascular endothelium-derived factors, such as endothelin-1 (ET-1) and nitric oxide (NO), play an important role in the regulation of vascular tonus. We hypothesized that endogenous ET-1 and NO participate in the adaptation of arterial stiffness in different types of exercise training. The purpose of this study was to investigate plasma ET-1 and NO concentrations and arterial stiffness in strength- and endurance-trained men. Young strength-trained athletes (SA; n = 11), endurance-trained athletes (EA; n = 12), and sedentary control men (C; n = 12) participated in this study. Maximal handgrip strength in SA and maximal oxygen uptake in EA were markedly greater than in C. Aortic pulse-wave velocity, which is an established index of arterial stiffness, was higher in SA and lower in EA than in C. Additionally, we measured systemic arterial compliance (SAC) using carotid artery applanation tonometry and Doppler echocardiography, because arterial stiffness is a primary determinant of the compliance. SAC was lower in SA and higher in EA compared with that in C. Plasma ET-1 concentrations were higher in SA compared with C and EA. We did not find significant differences in plasma NO concentrations (measured as the stable end product of NO, i.e., nitrite/nitrate). The relationships of plasma ET-1 concentrations to aortic pulse-wave velocity and SAC were linear. These results suggest that differences in endogenous ET-1 may partly participate in the mechanism underlying different adaptations of arterial stiffness in strength- and endurance-trained men. PMID:16997889

  19. Pulling a polymer with anisotropic stiffness near a sticky wall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tabbara, R.; Owczarek, A. L.

    2012-11-01

    We solve exactly a two-dimensional partially directed walk model of a semi-flexible polymer that has one end tethered to a sticky wall, while a pulling force away from the adsorbing surface acts on the free end of the walk. This model generalizes a number of previously considered adsorption models by incorporating individual horizontal and vertical stiffness effects, in competition with a variable pulling angle. A solution to the corresponding generating function is found by means of the kernel method. While the phases and related phase transitions are similar in nature to those found previously the analysis of the model in terms of its physical variables highlights various novel structures in the shapes of the phase diagrams and related behaviour of the polymer. We review the results of previously considered sub-cases, augmenting these findings to include analysis with respect to the models physical variablesnamely, temperature, pulling force, pulling angle away from the surface, stiffness strength and the ratio of vertical to horizontal stiffness potentials, with our subsequent analysis for the general model focusing on the effect that stiffness has on this pulling angle range. In analysing the model with stiffness we also pay special attention to the case where only vertical stiffness is included. The physical analysis of this case reveals behaviour more closely resembling that of an upward pulling force acting on a polymer than it does of a model where horizontal stiffness acts. The stiffness-temperature phase diagram exhibits re-entrance for low temperatures, previously only seen for three-dimensional or co-polymer models. For the most general model we delineate the shift in the physical behaviour as we change the ratio of vertical to horizontal stiffness between the horizontal-only and the vertical-only stiffness regimes. We find that a number of distinct physical characteristics will only be observed for a model where the vertical stiffness dominates the horizontal stiffness.

  20. Stiff-system problems and solutions at LLNL

    SciTech Connect

    Hindmarsh, A.C.

    1982-03-01

    Difficult stiff system problems encountered at LLNL are typified by those arising from various atmospheric kinetics models, which include reaction kinetics and transport in up to two space dimensions. Approaches devised for these problems resulted in several general purpose stiff system solvers. These have since evolved into a new systematized collection of solvers, called ODEPACK, based on backward differentiation formulas in the stiff case. A model kinetics-transport problem is used to illustrate the various solvers.

  1. Mapping stiffness perception in the brain with an fMRI-compatible particle-jamming haptic interface.

    PubMed

    Menon, Samir; Stanley, Andrew A; Zhu, Jack; Okamura, Allison M; Khatib, Oussama

    2014-01-01

    We demonstrate reliable neural responses to changes in haptic stiffness perception using a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) compatible particle-jamming haptic interface. Our haptic interface consists of a silicone tactile surface whose stiffness we can control by modulating air-pressure in a sub-surface pouch of coarsely ground particles. The particles jam together as the pressure decreases, which stiffens the surface. During fMRI acquisition, subjects performed a constant probing task, which involved continuous contact between the index fingertip and the interface and rhythmic increases and decreases in fingertip force (1.6 Hz) to probe stiffness. Without notifying subjects, we randomly switched the interface's stiffness (switch time, 300-500 ms) from soft (200 N/m) to hard (1400 N/m). Our experiment design's constant motor activity and cutaneous tactile sensation helped disassociate neural activation for both from stiffness perception, which helped localized it to a narrow region in somatosensory cortex near the supra-marginal gyrus. Testing different models of neural activation, we found that assuming indepedent stiffness-change responses at both soft-hard and hard-soft transitions provides the best explanation for observed fMRI measurements (three subjects; nine four-minute scan runs each). Furthermore, we found that neural activation related to stiffness-change and absolute stiffness can be localized to adjacent but disparate anatomical locations. We also show that classical finger-tapping experiments activate a swath of cortex and are not suitable for localizing stiffness perception. Our results demonstrate that decorrelating motor and sensory neural activation is essential for characterizing somatosensory cortex, and establish particle-jamming haptics as an attractive low-cost method for fMRI experiments. PMID:25570387

  2. Synthesis of stiffness and mass matrices from experimental vibration modes.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, R. G., Jr.

    1971-01-01

    With highly complex structures, it is sometimes desirable to derive a dynamic model of the system from experimental vibration data. This paper presents algorithms for synthesizing the mass and stiffness matrices from experimentally derived modal data in a way which preserves the physical significance of the individual mass and stiffness elements. The synthesizing procedures allow for the incorporation of other mass and stiffness data, whether empirical or based on the analyst's insight. The mass and stiffness matrices are derived for a cantilever beam example and are compared with those obtained using earlier techniques.

  3. Towards ultra-stiff materials: Surface effects on nanoporous materials

    SciTech Connect

    Lu, Dingjie; Xie, Yi Min; Huang, Xiaodong; Zhou, Shiwei; Li, Qing

    2014-09-08

    The significant rise in the strength and stiffness of porous materials at nanoscale cannot be described by conventional scaling laws. This letter investigates the effective Young's modulus of such materials by taking into account surface effect in a microcellular architecture designed for an ultralight material whose stiffness is an order of magnitude higher than most porous materials. We find that by considering the surface effects the predicted stiffness using Euler-Bernoulli beam theory compares well to experimental data for spongelike nanoporous gold with random microstructures. Analytical results show that, of the two factors influencing the effective Young's modulus, the residual stress is more important than the surface stiffness.

  4. Prevention and treatment of elbow stiffness: a 5-year update.

    PubMed

    Everding, Nathan G; Maschke, Steven D; Hoyen, Harry A; Evans, Peter J

    2013-12-01

    Elbow stiffness is a challenging and common problem faced by upper extremity surgeons. Although functional improvements can be made with both nonsurgical and surgical management strategies, physicians must remain vigilant with efforts to prevent stiffness before it starts. Recent advancements in the biology and pathology of elbow contracture have led to improved understanding of this difficult problem, and they may lead to future breakthroughs in the prevention and treatment of elbow stiffness. This article serves as an update to our previous review of elbow stiffness, focusing on recent advancements in the past 5 years, as well as updating our current algorithm for treatment. PMID:24210721

  5. Vitamin E reduces liver stiffness in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease

    PubMed Central

    Fukui, Aiko; Kawabe, Naoto; Hashimoto, Senju; Murao, Michihito; Nakano, Takuji; Shimazaki, Hiroaki; Kan, Toshiki; Nakaoka, Kazunori; Ohki, Masashi; Takagawa, Yuka; Takamura, Tomoki; Kamei, Hiroyuki; Yoshioka, Kentaro

    2015-01-01

    AIM: To evaluate the efficacy of vitamin E treatment on liver stiffness in nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). METHODS: Thirty-eight NAFLD patients were administered vitamin E for > 1 year. The doses of vitamin E were 150, 300, or 600 mg; three times per day after each meal. Responses were assessed by liver enzyme levels [aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotranferease (ALT), and γ-glutamyl transpeptidase (γ-GTP)], noninvasive scoring systems of hepatic fibrosis-4 [FIB-4 index and aspartate aminotransferase-to-platelet index (APRI)], and liver stiffness [velocity of shear wave (Vs)] measured by acoustic radiation force impulse elastography. Vs measurements were performed at baseline and 12 mo after baseline. The patients were genotyped for the patatin-like phospholipase domain containing 3 (PNPLA3) polymorphisms and then divided into either the CC/CG or GG group to examine each group’s responses to vitamin E treatment. RESULTS: We found marked differences in the platelet count, serum albumin levels, alkaline phosphatase levels, FIB-4 index, APRI, and Vs at baseline depending on the PNPLA3 polymorphism. AST, ALT, and γ-GTP levels (all P < 0.001); FIB-4 index (P = 0.035); APRI (P < 0.001); and Vs (P < 0.001) significantly decreased from baseline to 12 mo in the analysis of all patients. In the subset analyses of PNPLA3 genotypes, AST levels (P = 0.011), ALT levels (P < 0.001), γ-GTP levels (P = 0.005), APRI (P = 0.036), and Vs (P = 0.029) in genotype GG patients significantly improved, and AST and ALT levels (both P < 0.001), γ-GTP levels (P = 0.003), FIB-4 index (P = 0.017), and APRI (P < 0.001) in genotype CC/CG patients. CONCLUSION: One year of vitamin E treatment improved noninvasive fibrosis scores and liver stiffness in NAFLD patients. The responses were similar between different PNPLA3 genotypes. PMID:26644818

  6. The two faces of hypertension: role of aortic stiffness.

    PubMed

    Smulyan, Harold; Mookherjee, Saktipada; Safar, Michel E

    2016-02-01

    Adult hypertension can be divided into two relatively distinct forms-systolic/diastolic hypertension in midlife and systolic hypertension of the aged. The two types differ in prevalence, pathophysiology, and therapy. The prevalence of systolic hypertension in the elderly is twice that of midlife hypertension. The systolic pressure is elevated in both forms, but the high diastolic pressure in midlife is due to a raised total peripheral resistance, whereas the normal or low diastolic pressure in the elderly is due to aortic stiffening. Aortic stiffness, as measured by the carotid/femoral pulse wave velocity, has been found to be a cardiovascular risk marker independent of traditional risk factors for atherosclerosis. Instead, it is related to microcirculatory disease of the brain and kidney and to disorders of inflammation. Loss of aortic distensibility is an inevitable consequence of aging, but a review of its causes suggests that it may be amenable to future pharmacologic therapy. PMID:26725014

  7. Arterial stiffness is not associated with bone parameters in an elderly hyperhomocysteinemic population.

    PubMed

    van Dijk, S C; de Jongh, R T; Enneman, A W; Ham, A C; Swart, K M A; van Wijngaarden, J P; van der Zwaluw, N L; Brouwer-Brolsma, E M; van Schoor, N M; Dhonukshe-Rutten, R A M; Lips, P; de Groot, C P G M; Smulders, Y M; Blom, H J; Feskens, E J; Geleijnse, J M; van den Meiracker, A H; Mattace Raso, F U S; Uitterlinden, A G; Zillikens, M C; van der Velde, N

    2016-01-01

    Several studies have observed positive associations between bone disease and cardiovascular disease. A potential common pathway is hyperhomocysteinemia; however, to date, there is a lack of data regarding hyperhomocysteinemic populations. Therefore, we examined both cross-sectionally and longitudinally, whether there is an association between bone parameters and arterial stiffness in a hyperhomocysteinemic population, and investigated the potential common role of homocysteine (hcy) level on these associations. Cross-sectional and longitudinal data of the B-PROOF study were used (n=519). At both baseline and 2-year follow-up we determined bone measures-incident fractures and history of fractures, bone-mineral density (BMD) and quantitative ultrasound (QUS) measurement. We also measured arterial stiffness parameters at baseline-pulse wave velocity, augmentation index and aortic pulse pressure levels with applanation tonometry. Linear regression analysis was used to examine these associations and we tested for potential interaction of hcy level. The mean age of the study population was 72.3years and 44.3% were female. Both cross-sectionally and longitudinally there was no association between arterial stiffness measures and BMD or QUS measurements or with incident fractures (n=16) within the 2-3years of follow-up. Hcy level did not modify the associations and adjustment for hcy did not change the results. Arterial stiffness was not associated with bone parameters and fractures, and hcy neither acted as a pleiotropic factor nor as a mediator. The potential association between bone and arterial stiffness is therefore not likely to be driven by hyperhomocysteinemia. PMID:25804313

  8. Stiffness of ? subunit of F(1)-ATPase.

    PubMed

    Okuno, Daichi; Iino, Ryota; Noji, Hiroyuki

    2010-11-01

    F(1)-ATPase is a molecular motor in which the ? subunit rotates inside the ?(3)?(3) ring upon adenosine triphosphate (ATP) hydrolysis. Recent works on single-molecule manipulation of F(1)-ATPase have shown that kinetic parameters such as the on-rate of ATP and the off-rate of adenosine diphosphate (ADP) strongly depend on the rotary angle of the ? subunit (Hirono-Hara et al. 2005; Iko et al. 2009). These findings provide important insight into how individual reaction steps release energy to power F(1) and also have implications regarding ATP synthesis and how reaction steps are reversed upon reverse rotation. An important issue regarding the angular dependence of kinetic parameters is that the angular position of a magnetic bead rotation probe could be larger than the actual position of the ? subunit due to the torsional elasticity of the system. In the present study, we assessed the stiffness of two different portions of F(1) from thermophilic Bacillus PS3: the internal part of the ? subunit embedded in the ?(3)?(3) ring, and the complex of the external part of the ? subunit and the ?(3)?(3) ring (and streptavidin and magnetic bead), by comparing rotational fluctuations before and after crosslinkage between the rotor and stator. The torsional stiffnesses of the internal and remaining parts were determined to be around 223 and 73 pNnm/radian, respectively. Based on these values, it was estimated that the actual angular position of the internal part of the ? subunit is one-fourth of the magnetic bead position upon stalling using an external magnetic field. The estimated elasticity also partially explains the accommodation of the intrinsic step size mismatch between F(o) and F(1)-ATPase. PMID:20549499

  9. Monolithic superelastic rods with variable flexural stiffness for spinal fusion: modeling of the processing-properties relationship.

    PubMed

    Facchinello, Yann; Brailovski, Vladimir; Petit, Yvan; Mac-Thiong, Jean-Marc

    2014-11-01

    The concept of a monolithic Ti-Ni spinal rod with variable flexural stiffness is proposed to reduce the risks associated with spinal fusion. The variable stiffness is conferred to the rod using the Joule-heating local annealing technique. The annealing temperature and the mechanical properties' distributions resulted from this thermal treatment are numerically modeled and experimentally measured. To illustrate the possible applications of such a modeling approach, two case studies are presented: (a) optimization of the Joule-heating strategy to reduce annealing time, and (b) modulation of the rod's overall flexural stiffness using partial annealing. A numerical model of a human spine coupled with the model of the variable flexural stiffness spinal rod developed in this work can ultimately be used to maximize the stabilization capability of spinal instrumentation, while simultaneously decreasing the risks associated with spinal fusion. PMID:25128020

  10. Three-dimensional stiffness of the carpal arch.

    PubMed

    Gabra, Joseph N; Li, Zong-Ming

    2016-01-01

    The carpal arch of the wrist is formed by irregularly shaped carpal bones interconnected by numerous ligaments, resulting in complex structural mechanics. The purpose of this study was to determine the three-dimensional stiffness characteristics of the carpal arch using displacement perturbations. It was hypothesized that the carpal arch would exhibit an anisotropic stiffness behavior with principal directions that are oblique to the conventional anatomical axes. Eight (n=8) cadavers were used in this study. For each specimen, the hamate was fixed to a custom stationary apparatus. An instrumented robot arm applied three-dimensional displacement perturbations to the ridge of trapezium and corresponding reaction forces were collected. The displacement-force data were used to determine a three-dimensional stiffness matrix using least squares fitting. Eigendecomposition of the stiffness matrix was used to identify the magnitudes and directions of the principal stiffness components. The carpal arch structure exhibited anisotropic stiffness behaviors with a maximum principal stiffness of 16.4±4.6N/mm that was significantly larger than the other principal components of 3.1±0.9 and 2.6±0.5N/mm (p<0.001). The principal direction of the maximum stiffness was pronated within the cross section of the carpal tunnel which is accounted for by the stiff transverse ligaments that tightly bind distal carpal arch. The minimal principal stiffness is attributed to the less constraining articulation between the trapezium and scaphoid. This study provides advanced characterization of the wrist׳s three-dimensional structural stiffness for improved insight into wrist biomechanics, stability, and function. PMID:26617368

  11. The passive, human calf muscles in relation to standing: the short range stiffness lies in the contractile component

    PubMed Central

    Loram, Ian D; Maganaris, Constantinos N; Lakie, Martin

    2007-01-01

    Using short duration perturbations, previous attempts to measure the intrinsic ankle stiffness during human standing have revealed a substantial stabilizing contribution (6590% normalized to load stiffness mgh). Others regard this method as unsuitable for the low-frequency conditions of quiet standing and believe the passive contribution to be small (1015%). This latter view, consistent with a linear Hill-type model, argues that during standing, the contractile portion of the muscle is much less stiff than the tendon. Here, for upright subjects, we settle this issue by measuring the stiffness of the contractile portion of the passive calf muscles using low-frequency ankle rotations. Using ultrasound we tracked the changes in muscle contractile length and partitioned the ankle rotation into contractile and extra-contractile (series elastic) portions. Small ankle rotations of 0.15 and 0.4 deg show a contractile to series elastic stiffness ratio (Kce/Kse) of 12 9 and 6.3 10, respectively, with both elements displaying predominantly elastic behaviour. Larger, 7 deg rotations reveal the range of this ratio. It declines in a non-linear way from a high value (Kce/Kse= 18 11) to a low value (Kce/Kse= 1 0.4) as rotation increases from 0.1 to 7 deg. There is a marked transition at around 0.5 deg. The series elastic stiffness (Kse/mgh) remains largely constant (77 13%) demonstrating the contractile component origin of passive, short range stiffness. The linear Hill-type model does not describe the range-related stiffness relevant to the progression from quiet standing to perturbed balance and movement and can lead to inaccurate predictions regarding human balance. PMID:17823208

  12. On-machine ultrasonic sensors for paper stiffness. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, Maclin S.; Jackson, Theodore G.; Brown, Ernest

    2000-04-01

    This final report presents the results of a 5-year effort by the Institute of Paper Science and Technology (IPST) and its participating partners. The objective of this work was to develop and demonstrate sensors capable of measuring the velocity of ultrasound in the out-of-plane (ZD) and in-plane directions of paper as it is being produced on a commercial paper machine. On-machine ultrasonic measurements can be used to determine various mechanical properties of paper and to monitor process status and product quality. This report first presents a review of the background and potential benefits of on-machine ultrasonic measurements, then summarizes the results of previous work. The ZD measurement system involving the use of ultrasonic transducers in fluid-filled wheels is described in detail, including the method of measurement, the wheel mounting hardware, the on-machine operation, and an overview of the system software. Mill-trial results from two bump tests when producing 69{number_sign} and 55{number_sign} linearboard are presented. For the 69{number_sign} trial the correlation of ZD transit time with plybond and with ZDT (Z-direction tensile or internal bond strength) was greater than 0.8 (R squared). Also observed were ZD stiffness responses to refining and to calendering. ABB Industrial Systems Inc. was responsible for the in-plane sensor. A paper describing ABB's sensor and mill experience is appended.

  13. Mechanically stiff, electrically conductive composites of polymers and carbon nanotubes

    DOEpatents

    Worsley, Marcus A.; Kucheyev, Sergei O.; Baumann, Theodore F.; Kuntz, Joshua D.; Satcher, Jr., Joe H.; Hamza, Alex V.

    2015-07-21

    Using SWNT-CA as scaffolds to fabricate stiff, highly conductive polymer (PDMS) composites. The SWNT-CA is immersing in a polymer resin to produce a SWNT-CA infiltrated with a polymer resin. The SWNT-CA infiltrated with a polymer resin is cured to produce the stiff and electrically conductive composite of carbon nanotube aerogel and polymer.

  14. Quantification of plaque stiffness by Brillouin microscopy in experimental thin cap fibroatheroma.

    PubMed

    Antonacci, Giuseppe; Pedrigi, Ryan M; Kondiboyina, Avinash; Mehta, Vikram V; de Silva, Ranil; Paterson, Carl; Krams, Rob; Trk, Peter

    2015-11-01

    Plaques vulnerable to rupture are characterized by a thin and stiff fibrous cap overlaying a soft lipid-rich necrotic core. The ability to measure local plaque stiffness directly to quantify plaque stress and predict rupture potential would be very attractive, but no current technology does so. This study seeks to validate the use of Brillouin microscopy to measure the Brillouin frequency shift, which is related to stiffness, within vulnerable plaques. The left carotid artery of an ApoE(-/-)mouse was instrumented with a cuff that induced vulnerable plaque development in nine weeks. Adjacent histological sections from the instrumented and control arteries were stained for either lipids or collagen content, or imaged with confocal Brillouin microscopy. Mean Brillouin frequency shift was 15.79 0.09 GHz in the plaque compared with 16.24 0.15 (p < 0.002) and 17.16 0.56 GHz (p < 0.002) in the media of the diseased and control vessel sections, respectively. In addition, frequency shift exhibited a strong inverse correlation with lipid area of -0.67 0.06 (p < 0.01) and strong direct correlation with collagen area of 0.71 0.15 (p < 0.05). This is the first study, to the best of our knowledge, to apply Brillouin spectroscopy to quantify atherosclerotic plaque stiffness, which motivates combining this technology with intravascular imaging to improve detection of vulnerable plaques in patients. PMID:26559685

  15. The intrinsic stiffness of human trabecular meshwork cells increases with senescence

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Yow-Ren; Murphy, Christopher J.; Russell, Paul

    2015-01-01

    Dysfunction of the human trabecular meshwork (HTM) plays a central role in the age-associated disease glaucoma, a leading cause of irreversible blindness. The etiology remains poorly understood but cellular senescence, increased stiffness of the tissue, and the expression of Wnt antagonists such as secreted frizzled related protein-1 (SFRP1) have been implicated. However, it is not known if senescence is causally linked to either stiffness or SFRP1 expression. In this study, we utilized in vitro HTM senescence to determine the effect on cellular stiffening and SFRP1 expression. Stiffness of cultured cells was measured using atomic force microscopy and the morphology of the cytoskeleton was determined using immunofluorescent analysis. SFRP1 expression was measured using qPCR and immunofluorescent analysis. Senescent cell stiffness increased 1.88±0.14 or 2.57±0.14 fold in the presence or absence of serum, respectively. This was accompanied by increased vimentin expression, stress fiber formation, and SFRP1 expression. In aggregate, these data demonstrate that senescence may be a causal factor in HTM stiffening and elevated SFRP1 expression, and contribute towards disease progression. These findings provide insight into the etiology of glaucoma and, more broadly, suggest a causal link between senescence and altered tissue biomechanics in aging-associated diseases. PMID:25915531

  16. Evaluation of Compressive Strength and Stiffness of Grouted Soils by Using Elastic Waves

    PubMed Central

    Lee, In-Mo; Kim, Jong-Sun; Yoon, Hyung-Koo; Lee, Jong-Sub

    2014-01-01

    Cement grouted soils, which consist of particulate soil media and cementation agents, have been widely used for the improvement of the strength and stiffness of weak ground and for the prevention of the leakage of ground water. The strength, elastic modulus, and Poisson's ratio of grouted soils have been determined by classical destructive methods. However, the performance of grouted soils depends on several parameters such as the distribution of particle size of the particulate soil media, grouting pressure, curing time, curing method, and ground water flow. In this study, elastic wave velocities are used to estimate the strength and elastic modulus, which are generally obtained by classical strength tests. Nondestructive tests by using elastic waves at small strain are conducted before and during classical strength tests at large strain. The test results are compared to identify correlations between the elastic wave velocity measured at small strain and strength and stiffness measured at large strain. The test results show that the strength and stiffness have exponential relationship with elastic wave velocities. This study demonstrates that nondestructive methods by using elastic waves may significantly improve the strength and stiffness evaluation processes of grouted soils. PMID:25025082

  17. Evaluation of compressive strength and stiffness of grouted soils by using elastic waves.

    PubMed

    Lee, In-Mo; Kim, Jong-Sun; Yoon, Hyung-Koo; Lee, Jong-Sub

    2014-01-01

    Cement grouted soils, which consist of particulate soil media and cementation agents, have been widely used for the improvement of the strength and stiffness of weak ground and for the prevention of the leakage of ground water. The strength, elastic modulus, and Poisson's ratio of grouted soils have been determined by classical destructive methods. However, the performance of grouted soils depends on several parameters such as the distribution of particle size of the particulate soil media, grouting pressure, curing time, curing method, and ground water flow. In this study, elastic wave velocities are used to estimate the strength and elastic modulus, which are generally obtained by classical strength tests. Nondestructive tests by using elastic waves at small strain are conducted before and during classical strength tests at large strain. The test results are compared to identify correlations between the elastic wave velocity measured at small strain and strength and stiffness measured at large strain. The test results show that the strength and stiffness have exponential relationship with elastic wave velocities. This study demonstrates that nondestructive methods by using elastic waves may significantly improve the strength and stiffness evaluation processes of grouted soils. PMID:25025082

  18. Cell prestress. I. Stiffness and prestress are closely associated in adherent contractile cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Ning; Tolic-Norrelykke, Iva Marija; Chen, Jianxin; Mijailovich, Srboljub M.; Butler, James P.; Fredberg, Jeffrey J.; Stamenovic, Dimitrije; Ingber, D. E. (Principal Investigator)

    2002-01-01

    The tensegrity hypothesis holds that the cytoskeleton is a structure whose shape is stabilized predominantly by the tensile stresses borne by filamentous structures. Accordingly, cell stiffness must increase in proportion with the level of the tensile stress, which is called the prestress. Here we have tested that prediction in adherent human airway smooth muscle (HASM) cells. Traction microscopy was used to measure the distribution of contractile stresses arising at the interface between each cell and its substrate; this distribution is called the traction field. Because the traction field must be balanced by tensile stresses within the cell body, the prestress could be computed. Cell stiffness (G) was measured by oscillatory magnetic twisting cytometry. As the contractile state of the cell was modulated with graded concentrations of relaxing or contracting agonists (isoproterenol or histamine, respectively), the mean prestress ((t)) ranged from 350 to 1,900 Pa. Over that range, cell stiffness increased linearly with the prestress: G (Pa) = 0.18(t) + 92. While this association does not necessarily preclude other interpretations, it is the hallmark of systems that secure shape stability mainly through the prestress. Regardless of mechanism, these data establish a strong association between stiffness of HASM cells and the level of tensile stress within the cytoskeleton.

  19. Impact of diabetes mellitus on arterial stiffness in a representative sample of an urban Brazilian population

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Independent of other cardiovascular (CV) risk factors, increased arterial stiffness has been established as a predictor of morbidity and mortality. The main aim of this study was to investigate the impact of diabetes on arterial stiffness in a representative sample of an urban Brazilian population plus Amerindians. Methods A total of 1,415 individuals from the general population were randomly selected plus 588 Amerindians from a native community in Brazil. In addition, a sub-sample of 380 individuals from the general population had 5-year follow-up data. Pulse wave velocity (PWV) was measured with a non-invasive automatic device (Complior, Colson; Garges les Gonesses, France) and increased arterial stiffness was defined as PWV???12 m/s. Results In the overall group, diabetic individuals had higher frequencies of increased arterial stiffness and hypertension. They also had higher values of PWV, body mass index, total cholesterol, triglycerides, systolic and diastolic blood pressures compared to non-diabetic individuals (p?stiffness frequency were higher in diabetic individuals in both groups (hypertensive and non-hypertensive) (p?stiffness was observed in the diabetic individuals from the overall group (OR?=?2.27; CI?=?1.47-3.52, p?stiffness compared to non-diabetic individuals. Both diabetic and non-diabetic individuals had higher PWV values after 5 years. There was no significant difference in the 5-year PWV progression in diabetic compared to non-diabetic individuals. Conclusions These results confirm, in a sample of Brazilian population, that the presence of diabetes is associated with increased arterial stiffness and it may contribute in part to increased cardiovascular risk in diabetic patients. PMID:23965633

  20. HIV is an independent predictor of aortic stiffness

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Patients with treated Human Immunodeficiency Virus-1 (HIV) infection are at increased risk of cardiovascular events. Traditionally much of this risk has been attributed to metabolic and anthropometric abnormalities associated with HIV, which are similar to the metabolic syndrome (MS), an established risk factor for cardiovascular mortality. It remains unclear whether treated HIV infection is itself associated with increased risk, via increase vascular stiffness. Methods 226 subjects (90 with HIV) were divided into 4 groups based on HIV and MS status: 1) HIV-ve/MS-ve, 2) HIV-ve/MS?+?ve, 3) HIV?+?ve/MS-ve and 4)HIV?+?ve/MS?+?ve. CMR was used to determine aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) and regional aortic distensibility (AD). Results PWV was 11% higher and regional AD up to 14% lower in the HIV?+?ve/MS-ve group when compared to HIV-ve/MS-ve (p??0.99 all analyses). The HIV?+?ve/MS?+?ve group had 32% higher PWV and 30-34% lower AD than the HIV-ve/MS-ve group (all p?measures, treated HIV infection is associated with increased aortic stiffness and is also an independent predictor of both PWV and regional AD. The magnitude of the effect of treated HIV and MS are similar, with additive detrimental effects on central vascular elasticity. PMID:25187084

  1. VAGINAL DEGENERATION FOLLOWING IMPLANTATION OF SYNTHETIC MESH WITH INCREASED STIFFNESS

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Rui; Abramowitch, Steven; Knight, Katrina; Palcsey, Stacy; Nolfi, Alexis; Feola, Andrew; Stein, Susan; Moalli, Pamela A.

    2012-01-01

    Objective To compare the impact of the prototype prolapse mesh Gynemesh PS to that of two new generation lower stiffness meshes, UltraPro and SmartMesh, on vaginal morphology and structural composition. Design A mechanistic study employing a non-human primate (NHP) model. Setting Magee-Womens Research Institute at the University of Pittsburgh. Population Parous rhesus macaques, with similar age, weight, parity and POP-Q scores. Methods Following IACUC approval, 50 rhesus macaques were implanted with Gynemesh PS (n=12), UltraPro with its blue line perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of vagina (n=10), UltraPro with its blue line parallel to the longitudinal axis of vagina (n=8) and SmartMesh (n=8) via sacrocolpopexy following hysterectomy. Sham operated animals (n=12) served as controls. Main Outcome Measures The mesh-vagina complex (MVC) was removed after 12 weeks and analyzed for histomorphology, in situ cell apoptosis, total collagen, elastin, glycosaminoglycan content and total collagenase activity. Appropriate statistics and correlation analyses were performed accordingly. Results Relative to sham and the two lower stiffness meshes, Gynemesh PS had the greatest negative impact on vaginal histomorphology and composition. Compared to sham, implantation with Gynemesh PS caused substantial thinning of the smooth muscle layer (1557 ± 499μm vs 866 ± 210 μm, P=0.02), increased apoptosis particularly in the area of the mesh fibers (P=0.01), decreased collagen and elastin content (20% (P=0.03) and 43% (P=0.02), respectively) and increased total collagenase activity (135% (P=0.01)). GAG (glycosaminoglycan), a marker of tissue injury, was the highest with Gynemesh PS compared to sham and other meshes (P=0.01). Conclusion Mesh implantation with the stiffer mesh Gynemesh PS induced a maladaptive remodeling response consistent with vaginal degeneration. PMID:23240802

  2. An experimental nonlinear low dynamic stiffness device for shock isolation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Francisco Ledezma-Ramirez, Diego; Ferguson, Neil S.; Brennan, Michael J.; Tang, Bin

    2015-07-01

    The problem of shock generated vibration is very common in practice and difficult to isolate due to the high levels of excitation involved and its transient nature. If not properly isolated it could lead to large transmitted forces and displacements. Typically, classical shock isolation relies on the use of passive stiffness elements to absorb energy by deformation and some damping mechanism to dissipate residual vibration. The approach of using nonlinear stiffness elements is explored in this paper, focusing in providing an isolation system with low dynamic stiffness. The possibilities of using such a configuration for a shock mount are studied experimentally following previous theoretical models. The model studied considers electromagnets and permanent magnets in order to obtain nonlinear stiffness forces using different voltage configurations. It is found that the stiffness nonlinearities could be advantageous in improving shock isolation in terms of absolute displacement and acceleration response when compared with linear elastic elements.

  3. Relationship between left ventricular diastolic function and arterial stiffness in asymptomatic patients with diabetes mellitus.

    PubMed

    Roos, Cornelis J; Auger, Dominique; Djaberi, Roxana; de Koning, Eelco J; Rabelink, Ton J; Pereira, Alberto M; Bax, Jeroen J; Delgado, Victoria; Jukema, J Wouter; Scholte, Arthur J

    2013-03-01

    Left ventricular (LV) diastolic dysfunction and increased arterial stiffness are common in patients with diabetes mellitus (DM). However, the relation between these two pathophysiological factors remains unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between LV diastolic function and arterial stiffness as assessed with applanation tonometry. In 142 asymptomatic patients with DM (mean age 48 years, 75 (53 %) men, 72 (51 %) patients with type 2 DM) LV diastolic function was assessed with echocardiography. Arterial stiffness was evaluated measuring the aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) whereas wave reflection was assessed measuring central systolic blood pressure (cSBP), central pulse pressure (cPP), and augmentation index (AIx) with applanation tonometry. Mean E/A ratio, E' and E/E' ratio were 1.1 0.3, 8.1 2.3 and 9.2 3.3 cm/s, respectively. Mean PWV, mean cSBP, median cPP and mean AIx were 7.9 2.4 m/s, 122 17 mmHg, 40 [35-51] mmHg and 17.9 12.1 %, respectively. PWV was independently associated with LV diastolic dysfunction grade (? = 0.76, p = 0.03). In contrast, measures of wave reflection, cPP, cSBP and AIx were independently related with E/A ratio, but not with the LV diastolic dysfunction grade. Parameters of arterial stiffness and wave reflection are associated with echocardiographic indices of LV diastolic function in asymptomatic patients with DM. Therapies that prevent progression of arterial stiffness and reduce late-systolic pressure overload may help to reduce the prevalence of LV diastolic dysfunction in this population. PMID:23053856

  4. The Focal Adhesion: A Regulated Component of Aortic Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Saphirstein, Robert J.; Gao, Yuan Z.; Jensen, Mikkel H.; Gallant, Cynthia M.; Vetterkind, Susanne; Moore, Jeffrey R.; Morgan, Kathleen G.

    2013-01-01

    Increased aortic stiffness is an acknowledged predictor and cause of cardiovascular disease. The sources and mechanisms of vascular stiffness are not well understood, although the extracellular matrix (ECM) has been assumed to be a major component. We tested here the hypothesis that the focal adhesions (FAs) connecting the cortical cytoskeleton of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) to the matrix in the aortic wall are a component of aortic stiffness and that this component is dynamically regulated. First, we examined a model system in which magnetic tweezers could be used to monitor cellular cortical stiffness, serum-starved A7r5 aortic smooth muscle cells. Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), an activator of myosin that increases cell contractility, increased cortical stiffness. A small molecule inhibitor of Src-dependent FA recycling, PP2, was found to significantly inhibit LPA-induced increases in cortical stiffness, as well as tension-induced increases in FA size. To directly test the applicability of these results to force and stiffness development at the level of vascular tissue, we monitored mouse aorta ring stiffness with small sinusoidal length oscillations during agonist-induced contraction. The alpha-agonist phenylephrine, which also increases myosin activation and contractility, increased tissue stress and stiffness in a PP2- and FAK inhibitor 14-attenuated manner. Subsequent phosphotyrosine screening and follow-up with phosphosite-specific antibodies confirmed that the effects of PP2 and FAK inhibitor 14 in vascular tissue involve FA proteins, including FAK, CAS, and paxillin. Thus, in the present study we identify, for the first time, the FA of the VSMC, in particular the FAK-Src signaling complex, as a significant subcellular regulator of aortic stiffness and stress. PMID:23626821

  5. Leg stiffness adjustment during hopping at different intensities and frequencies.

    PubMed

    Mrdakovic, Vladimir; Ilic, Dusko; Vulovic, Radun; Matic, Milan; Jankovic, Nenad; Filipovic, Nenad

    2014-01-01

    Understanding leg and joint stiffness adjustment during maximum hopping may provide important information for developing more effective training methods. It has been reported that ankle stiffness has major influence on stable spring-mass dynamics during submaximal hopping, and that knee stiffness is a major determinant for hopping performance during maximal hopping task. Furthermore, there are no reports on how the height of the previous hop could affect overall stiffness modulation of the subsequent maximum one. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether and how the jump height of the previous hop affects leg and joint stiffness for subsequent maximum hop. Ten participants completed trials in which they repeatedly hopped as high as possible (MX task) and trials in which they were instructed to perform several maximum hops with 3 preferred (optimal) height hops between each of them (P3MX task). Both hopping tasks were performed at 2.2 Hz hopping frequency and at the participant's preferred (freely chosen) frequency as well. By comparing results of those hopping tasks, we found that ankle stiffness at 2.2 Hz ( p = 0.041) and knee stiffness at preferred frequency ( p = 0.045) was significantly greater for MX versus P3MX tasks. Leg stiffness for 2.2 Hz hopping is greater than for the preferred frequency. Ankle stiffness is greater for 2.2 Hz than for preferred frequencies; opposite stands for knee stiffness. The results of this study suggest that preparatory hop height can be considered as an important factor for modulation of maximum hop. PMID:25308379

  6. Increased central arterial stiffness in hypothyroidism.

    PubMed

    Obuobie, K; Smith, J; Evans, L M; John, R; Davies, J S; Lazarus, J H

    2002-10-01

    Hypothyroidism is associated with cardiovascular dysfunction. It is increasingly apparent that stiffening of central arteries may lead to increased afterload and cardiac dysfunction. We noninvasively studied the peripheral and central pressure waveforms in 12 untreated hypothyroid patients as well as in 12 age-, sex-, and body mass index-matched controls using the technique of pulse wave analysis from recordings at the radial artery. Indexes of arterial stiffness, augmentation index (AI) and augmentation of central arterial pressure (AG), were derived as well as time of travel of the reflected wave (TR), a direct estimate of aortic pulse wave velocity. At baseline, there were no significant differences between the 2 groups in brachial and aortic blood pressures. Hypothyroid patients had significantly higher AI than controls (mean +/- SEM[SCAP], 32.0 +/- 3.4% vs. 17.0 +/- 2.4%; P < 0.0005) even when corrected for heart rate (AI(C); 28.0 +/- 3.2% vs. 17.0 +/- 2.4%; P < 0.006) and AG (13.0 +/- 2.2 vs. 7.0 +/- 2.1 mm Hg; P < 0.03) together with a lower TR (132.0 +/- 4.1 vs. 142.0 +/- 1.5 msec; P < 0.03). After 6 months of therapy with T(4), all patients were euthyroid. AI(C) had decreased in the patient group (23.0 +/- 3.2% vs. 28.0 +/- 3.2%; P < 0.01) as had AG (9.0 +/- 1.5 vs. 13.0 +/- 2.2 mm Hg; P < 0.008), but TR was significantly higher (142.0 +/- 3.0 vs. 132.0 +/- 4.1 msec; P < 0.008). AI correlated with age in all groups (hypothyroid group: r = 0.937; P < 0.0005; control group: r = 0.804; P < 0.0005), but correlated with TSH level only among controls (r = 0.591; P < 0.05). This study confirms that hypothyroidism is associated with increased cardiovascular risk, as evidenced by increased augmentation of central aortic pressures and central arterial stiffness. Furthermore, these abnormalities are reversed after adequate T(4) replacement. PMID:12364455

  7. Stiffness characteristics of airfoils under pulse loading

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turner, Kevin Eugene

    The turbomachinery industry continually struggles with the adverse effects of contact rubs between airfoils and casings. The key parameter controlling the severity of a given rub event is the contact load produced when the airfoil tips incur into the casing. These highly non-linear and transient forces are difficult to calculate and their effects on the static and rotating components are not well understood. To help provide this insight, experimental and analytical capabilities have been established and exercised through an alliance between GE Aviation and The Ohio State University Gas Turbine Laboratory. One of the early findings of the program is the influence of blade flexibility on the physics of rub events. The core focus of the work presented in this dissertation is to quantify the influence of airfoil flexibility through a novel modeling approach that is based on the relationship between applied force duration and maximum tip deflection. This relationship is initially established using a series of forward, non-linear and transient analyses in which simulated impulse rub loads are applied. This procedure, although effective, is highly inefficient and costly to conduct by requiring numerous explicit simulations. To alleviate this issue, a simplified model, named the pulse magnification model, is developed that only requires a modal analysis and a static analyses to fully describe how the airfoil stiffness changes with respect to load duration. Results from the pulse magnification model are compared to results from the full transient simulation method and to experimental results, providing sound verification for the use of the modeling approach. Furthermore, a unique and highly efficient method to model airfoil geometries was developed and is outlined in this dissertation. This method produces quality Finite Element airfoil definitions directly from a fully parameterized mathematical model. The effectiveness of this approach is demonstrated by comparing modal properties of the simulated geometries to modal properties of various current airfoil designs. Finally, this modeling approach was used in conjunction with the pulse magnification model to study the effects of various airfoil geometric features on the stiffness of the blade under impulsive loading.

  8. Precise damping and stiffness extraction in acoustic driven cantilever in liquid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maali, Abdelhamid; Boisgard, Rodolphe

    2013-10-01

    In this paper, we first explain how to extract accurately the driving force acting on the acoustic driven atomic force microscope cantilever in liquid from the measured resonance curve. We present a model that includes the driving force to extract precisely the damping and the stiffness of the tip sample interaction. The model is validated by an experimental test based on two independent methods to measure the hydrodynamic drag coefficient of a sphere moving perpendicular to flat surface.

  9. Bone stiffness predicts strength similarly for human vertebral cancellous bone in compression and for cortical bone in tension.

    PubMed

    Fyhrie, D P; Vashishth, D

    2000-02-01

    The yield strength and ultimate strength of cortical and cancellous bone tissue are very highly correlated to bone stiffness. For samples of human vertebral cancellous bone in compression and for bovine cortical bone in tension, the coefficient of determination (r2) for regression between ultimate strength and stiffness was 0.89 and 0.92, and between yield strength and stiffness it was 0.94 and 0.93, respectively. The slope of the regression for human vertebral cancellous bone ultimate strength predicted by stiffness was not statistically different from similar regressions for cortical bone in tension in either a bovine sample or in published data from multiple species. We believe that the observed correlation results from the evolutionary need to build sufficiently strong bones using cells that are sensitive to deformation and that directly control bone stiffness, but not strength. The practical significance of this work is that an in vivo estimate of bone stiffness (e.g., from ultrasound measurement) may be a surrogate for bone strength. PMID:10678412

  10. Hepatic and Splenic Stiffness Augmentation Assessed with MR Elastography in an in vivo Porcine Portal Hypertension Model

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Meng; Kolipaka, Arunark; Woodrum, David A.; Glaser, Kevin J.; Romano, Anthony J; Manduca, Armando; Talwalkar, Jayant A.; Araoz, Philip A.; McGee, Kiaran P.; Anavekar, Nandan S.; Ehman, Richard L.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To investigate the influence of portal pressure on the shear stiffness of the liver and spleen in a well-controlled in vivo porcine model with MR Elastography (MRE). A significant correlation between portal pressure and tissue stiffness could be used to noninvasively assess increased portal venous pressure (portal hypertension), which is a frequent clinical condition caused by cirrhosis of the liver and is responsible for the development of many lethal complications. Materials and Methods During multiple intra-arterial infusions of Dextran-40 in three adult domestic pigs in vivo, 3-D abdominal MRE was performed with left ventricle and portal catheters measuring blood pressure simultaneously. Least-squares linear regressions were used to analyze the relationship between tissue stiffness and portal pressure. Results Liver and spleen stiffness have a dynamic component that increases significantly following an increase in portal or left ventricular pressure. Correlation coefficients with the linear regressions between stiffness and pressure exceeded 0.8 in most cases. Conclusion The observed stiffness-pressure relationship of the liver and spleen could provide a promising noninvasive method for assessing portal pressure. Using MRE to study the tissue mechanics associated with portal pressure may provide new insights into the natural history and pathophysiology of hepatic diseases and may have significant diagnostic value in the future. PMID:23418135

  11. What drives the translocation of stiff chains?

    PubMed Central

    Zandi, Roya; Reguera, David; Rudnick, Joseph; Gelbart, William M.

    2003-01-01

    We study the dynamics of the passage of a stiff chain through a pore into a cell containing particles that bind reversibly to it. Using Brownian molecular dynamics simulations we investigate the mean first-passage time as a function of the length of the chain inside for different concentrations of binding particles. As a consequence of the interactions with these particles, the chain experiences a net force along its length whose calculated value from the simulations accounts for the velocity at which it enters the cell. This force can in turn be obtained from the solution of a generalized diffusion equation incorporating an effective Langmuir adsorption free energy for the chain plus binding particles. These results suggest a role of binding particles in the translocation process that is in general quite different from that of a Brownian ratchet. Furthermore, nonequilibrium effects contribute significantly to the dynamics; e.g., the chain often enters the cell faster than particle binding can be saturated, resulting in a force several times smaller than the equilibrium value. PMID:12851462

  12. Controlled Unusual Stiffness of Mechanical Metamaterials.

    PubMed

    Lee, Wooju; Kang, Da-Young; Song, Jihwan; Moon, Jun Hyuk; Kim, Dongchoul

    2016-01-01

    Mechanical metamaterials that are engineered with sub-unit structures present unusual mechanical properties depending on the loading direction. Although they show promise, their practical utility has so far been somewhat limited because, to the best of our knowledge, no study about the potential of mechanical metamaterials made from sophisticatedly tailored sub-unit structures has been made. Here, we present a mechanical metamaterial whose mechanical properties can be systematically designed without changing its chemical composition or weight. We study the mechanical properties of triply periodic bicontinuous structures whose detailed sub-unit structure can be precisely fabricated using various sub-micron fabrication methods. Simulation results show that the effective wave velocity of the structures along with different directions can be designed to introduce the anisotropy of stiffness by changing a volume fraction and aspect ratio. The ratio of Young's modulus to shear modulus can be increased by up to at least 100, which is a 3500% increase over that of isotropic material (2.8, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene). Furthermore, Poisson's ratio of the constituent material changes the ratio while Young's modulus does not influence it. This study presents the promising potential of mechanical metamaterials for versatile industrial and biomedical applications. PMID:26837466

  13. Controlled Unusual Stiffness of Mechanical Metamaterials

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Wooju; Kang, Da-Young; Song, Jihwan; Moon, Jun Hyuk; Kim, Dongchoul

    2016-01-01

    Mechanical metamaterials that are engineered with sub-unit structures present unusual mechanical properties depending on the loading direction. Although they show promise, their practical utility has so far been somewhat limited because, to the best of our knowledge, no study about the potential of mechanical metamaterials made from sophisticatedly tailored sub-unit structures has been made. Here, we present a mechanical metamaterial whose mechanical properties can be systematically designed without changing its chemical composition or weight. We study the mechanical properties of triply periodic bicontinuous structures whose detailed sub-unit structure can be precisely fabricated using various sub-micron fabrication methods. Simulation results show that the effective wave velocity of the structures along with different directions can be designed to introduce the anisotropy of stiffness by changing a volume fraction and aspect ratio. The ratio of Young’s modulus to shear modulus can be increased by up to at least 100, which is a 3500% increase over that of isotropic material (2.8, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene). Furthermore, Poisson’s ratio of the constituent material changes the ratio while Young’s modulus does not influence it. This study presents the promising potential of mechanical metamaterials for versatile industrial and biomedical applications. PMID:26837466

  14. Controlled Unusual Stiffness of Mechanical Metamaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Wooju; Kang, Da-Young; Song, Jihwan; Moon, Jun Hyuk; Kim, Dongchoul

    2016-02-01

    Mechanical metamaterials that are engineered with sub-unit structures present unusual mechanical properties depending on the loading direction. Although they show promise, their practical utility has so far been somewhat limited because, to the best of our knowledge, no study about the potential of mechanical metamaterials made from sophisticatedly tailored sub-unit structures has been made. Here, we present a mechanical metamaterial whose mechanical properties can be systematically designed without changing its chemical composition or weight. We study the mechanical properties of triply periodic bicontinuous structures whose detailed sub-unit structure can be precisely fabricated using various sub-micron fabrication methods. Simulation results show that the effective wave velocity of the structures along with different directions can be designed to introduce the anisotropy of stiffness by changing a volume fraction and aspect ratio. The ratio of Young’s modulus to shear modulus can be increased by up to at least 100, which is a 3500% increase over that of isotropic material (2.8, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene). Furthermore, Poisson’s ratio of the constituent material changes the ratio while Young’s modulus does not influence it. This study presents the promising potential of mechanical metamaterials for versatile industrial and biomedical applications.

  15. Quantitative evaluation of stiffness of commercial suture materials.

    PubMed

    Chu, C C; Kizil, Z

    1989-03-01

    The bending stiffness of 22 commercial suture materials of varying size, chemical structure and physical form was quantitatively evaluated using a stiffness tester (Taber V-5, model 150B, Teledyne). The commercial sutures were Chromic catgut; Dexon (polyglycolic acid); Vicryl (polyglactin 910); PDS (polydioxanone); Maxon (polyglycolide-trimethylene carbonate); Silk (coated with silicone); Mersilene (polyester fiber); Tycron (polyester fiber); Ethibond (polyethylene terephthalate coated with polybutylene); Nurolon (nylon 66); Surgilon (nylon 66 coated with silicone); Ethilon (coated nylon 66), Prolene (polypropylene); Dermalene (polyethylene), and Gore-tex (polytetraflouroethylene). These are both natural and synthetic, absorbable and nonabsorbable and monofilament and multifilament sutures. All of these sutures were size 2-0, but Prolene sutures with sizes ranging from 1-0 to 9-0 were also tested to determine the effect of suture size on stiffness. The bending stiffness data obtained showed that a wide range of bending stiffness was observed among the 22 commercial sutures. The most flexible 2-0 suture was Gore-tex, followed by Dexon, Silk, Surgilon, Vicryl (uncoated), Tycron, Nurolon, Mersilene, Ethibond, Maxon, PDS, Ethilon, Prolene, Chromic catgut, coated Vicryl, and lastly, Dermalene. The large porous volume inherent in Gore-tex monofilament suture was the reason for its lowest flexural stiffness. Sutures with a braided structure were generally more flexible than those of a monofilament structure, irrespective of the chemical constituents. Coated sutures had significantly higher stiffness than the corresponding uncoated ones. This is particularly true when polymers rather than wax were used as the coating material. This increase in stiffness is attributable to the loss of mobility under bending force in the fibers and yarns that make up the sutures. An increase in the size of the suture significantly increased the stiffness, and the magnitude of increase depended on the chemical constituent of the suture. The flexural stiffness of sutures was also found to depend on the duration of bending in the test for stiffness. In general, monofilament sutures exhibited the largest time-dependent stiffness. This was most pronounced with the Gore-tex suture. Most braided sutures also showed less time-dependence in stiffness. Nylon sutures did not exhibit this time-dependent phenomenon regardless of physical form. PMID:2919353

  16. Effect of Lysyl Oxidase Inhibition on Angiotensin II-Induced Arterial Hypertension, Remodeling, and Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    Eberson, Lance S.; Sanchez, Pablo A.; Majeed, Beenish A.; Tawinwung, Supannikar; Secomb, Timothy W.; Larson, Douglas F.

    2015-01-01

    It is well accepted that angiotensin II (Ang II) induces altered vascular stiffness through responses including both structural and material remodeling. Concurrent with remodeling is the induction of the enzyme lysyl oxidase (LOX) through which ECM proteins are cross-linked. The study objective was to determine the effect of LOX mediated cross-linking on vascular mechanical properties. Three-month old mice were chronically treated with Ang II with or without the LOX blocker, β -aminopropionitrile (BAPN), for 14 days. Pulse wave velocity (PWV) from Doppler measurements of the aortic flow wave was used to quantify in vivo vascular stiffness in terms of an effective Young’s modulus. The increase in effective Young’s modulus with Ang II administration was abolished with the addition of BAPN, suggesting that the material properties are a major controlling element in vascular stiffness. BAPN inhibited the Ang II induced collagen cross-link formation by 2-fold and PWV by 44% (P<0.05). Consistent with this observation, morphometric analysis showed that BAPN did not affect the Ang II mediated increase in medial thickness but significantly reduced the adventitial thickness. Since the hypertensive state contributes to the measured in vivo PWV stiffness, we removed the Ang II infusion pumps on Day 14 and achieved normal arterial blood pressures. With pump removal we observed a decrease of the PWV in the Ang II group to 25% above that of the control values (P=0.002), with a complete return to control values in the Ang II plus BAPN group. In conclusion, we have shown that the increase in vascular stiffness with 14 day Ang II administration results from a combination of hypertension-induced wall strain, adventitial wall thickening and Ang II mediated LOX ECM cross-linking, which is a major material source of vascular stiffening, and that the increased PWV was significantly inhibited with co-administration of BAPN. PMID:25875748

  17. DETERIORATION IN BIOMECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF THE VAGINA FOLLOWING IMPLANTATION OF A HIGH STIFFNESS PROLAPSE MESH

    PubMed Central

    Feola, Andrew; Abramowitch, Steven; Jallah, Zegbeh; Stein, Suzan; Barone, William; Palcsey, Stacy; Moalli, Pamela

    2012-01-01

    Objective Define the impact of prolapse mesh on the biomechanical properties of the vagina by comparing the prototype Gynemesh PS (Ethicon, Somerville, NJ) to 2 new generation lower stiffness meshes, SmartMesh (Coloplast, Minneapolis, MN) and UltraPro (Ethicon). Design A study employing a non-human primate model Setting University of Pittsburgh Population 45 parous rhesus macaques Methods Meshes were implanted via sacrocolpexy after hysterectomy and compared to Sham. Because its stiffness is highly directional UltraPro was implanted in two directions: UltraPro Perpendicular (less stiff) and UltraPro Parallel (more stiff), with the indicated direction referring to the blue orientation lines. The mesh-vaginal complex (MVC) was excised en toto after 3 months. Main Outcome Measures Active mechanical properties were quantified as contractile force generated in the presence of 120 mM KCl. Passive mechanical properties (a tissues ability to resist an applied force) were measured using a multi-axial protocol. Results Vaginal contractility decreased 80% following implantation with the Gynemesh PS (p=0.001), 48% after SmartMesh (p=0.001), 68% after UltraPro parallel (p=0.001) and was highly variable after UltraPro perpendicular (p =0.16). The tissue contribution to the passive mechanical behavior of the MVC was drastically reduced for Gynemesh PS (p=0.003) but not SmartMesh (p=0.9) or UltraPro independent of the direction of implantation (p=0.68 and p=0.66, respectively). Conclusions Deterioration of the mechanical properties of the vagina was highest following implantation with the stiffest mesh, Gynemesh PS. Such a decrease associated with implantation of a device of increased stiffness is consistent with findings from other systems employing prostheses for support. PMID:23240801

  18. A comparison of methods to determine bilateral asymmetries in vertical leg stiffness.

    PubMed

    Maloney, Sean J; Fletcher, Iain M; Richards, Joanna

    2016-05-01

    Whilst the measurement and quantification of vertical leg stiffness (Kvert) asymmetry is of important practical relevance to athletic performance, literature investigating bilateral asymmetry in Kvert is limited. Moreover, how the type of task used to assess Kvert may affect the expression of asymmetry has not been properly determined. Twelve healthy males performed three types of performance tasks on a dual force plate system to determine Kvert asymmetries; the tasks were (a) bilateral hopping, (b) bilateral drop jumping and (c) unilateral drop jumping. Across all the three methods, Kvert was significantly different between compliant and stiff limbs (P < 0.001) with a significant interaction effect between limb and method (P = 0.005). Differences in Kvert between compliant and stiff limbs were -5.3% (P < 0.001), -21.8% (P = 0.007) and -15.1% (P < 0.001) for the bilateral hopping, bilateral drop jumping and unilateral drop jumping methods, respectively. All the three methods were able to detect significant differences between compliant and stiff limbs, and could be used as a diagnostic tool to assess Kvert asymmetry. Drop jumping tasks detected larger Kvert asymmetries than hopping, suggesting that asymmetries may be expressed to a greater extent in acyclic, maximal performance tasks. PMID:26230224

  19. Acute Effect on Arterial Stiffness after Performing Resistance Exercise by Using the Valsalva Manoeuvre during Exertion

    PubMed Central

    Mak, Wai Yip Vincent; Lai, Wai Keung Christopher

    2015-01-01

    Background. Performing resistance exercise could lead to an increase in arterial stiffness. Objective. We investigate the acute effect on arterial stiffness by performing Valsalva manoeuvre during resistance exercise. Materials and Methods. Eighteen healthy young men were assigned to perform bicep curls by using two breathing techniques (exhalation and Valsalva manoeuvre during muscle contraction) on two separate study days. Carotid pulsed wave velocity (cPWV) was measured as an indicator to reflect the body central arterial stiffness using a high-resolution ultrasound system, and its value was monitored repeatedly at three predefined time intervals: before resistance exercise, immediately after exercise, and 15 minutes after exercise. Results. At the 0th minute after resistance exercise was performed using the Valsalva manoeuvre during exertion, a significant increase in cPWV (4.91?m/s 0.52) compared with the baseline value (4.67?m/s 0.32, P = 0.008) was observed, and then it nearly returned to its baseline value at the 15th minute after exercise (4.66?m/s 0.44, P = 0.010). These findings persisted after adjusting for age, body mass index, and systolic blood pressure. Conclusion. Our result suggests short duration of resistance exercise may provoke a transient increase in central arterial stiffness in healthy young men. PMID:26539481

  20. Damage detection on sudden stiffness reduction based on discrete wavelet transform.

    PubMed

    Chen, Bo; Chen, Zhi-wei; Wang, Gan-jun; Xie, Wei-ping

    2014-01-01

    The sudden stiffness reduction in a structure may cause the signal discontinuity in the acceleration responses close to the damage location at the damage time instant. To this end, the damage detection on sudden stiffness reduction of building structures has been actively investigated in this study. The signal discontinuity of the structural acceleration responses of an example building is extracted based on the discrete wavelet transform. It is proved that the variation of the first level detail coefficients of the wavelet transform at damage instant is linearly proportional to the magnitude of the stiffness reduction. A new damage index is proposed and implemented to detect the damage time instant, location, and severity of a structure due to a sudden change of structural stiffness. Numerical simulation using a five-story shear building under different types of excitation is carried out to assess the effectiveness and reliability of the proposed damage index for the building at different damage levels. The sensitivity of the damage index to the intensity and frequency range of measurement noise is also investigated. The made observations demonstrate that the proposed damage index can accurately identify the sudden damage events if the noise intensity is limited. PMID:24991647

  1. Damage Detection on Sudden Stiffness Reduction Based on Discrete Wavelet Transform

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Bo; Chen, Zhi-wei; Wang, Gan-jun; Xie, Wei-ping

    2014-01-01

    The sudden stiffness reduction in a structure may cause the signal discontinuity in the acceleration responses close to the damage location at the damage time instant. To this end, the damage detection on sudden stiffness reduction of building structures has been actively investigated in this study. The signal discontinuity of the structural acceleration responses of an example building is extracted based on the discrete wavelet transform. It is proved that the variation of the first level detail coefficients of the wavelet transform at damage instant is linearly proportional to the magnitude of the stiffness reduction. A new damage index is proposed and implemented to detect the damage time instant, location, and severity of a structure due to a sudden change of structural stiffness. Numerical simulation using a five-story shear building under different types of excitation is carried out to assess the effectiveness and reliability of the proposed damage index for the building at different damage levels. The sensitivity of the damage index to the intensity and frequency range of measurement noise is also investigated. The made observations demonstrate that the proposed damage index can accurately identify the sudden damage events if the noise intensity is limited. PMID:24991647

  2. Musculoskeletal stiffness during hopping and running does not change following downhill backwards walking.

    PubMed

    Joseph, Corey W; Bradshaw, Elizabeth J; Kemp, Justin; Clark, Ross A

    2014-09-01

    Eccentric contractions that provide spring energy can also cause muscle damage. The aim of this study was to explore leg and vertical stiffness following muscle damage induced by an eccentric exercise protocol. Twenty active males completed 60 minutes of backward-walking on a treadmill at 0.67m/s and a gradient of -8.5 to induce muscle damage. Tests were performed immediately before; immediately post; and 24, 48, and 168 hours post eccentric exercise. Tests included running at 3.35m/s and hopping at 2.2Hz using single- and double-legged actions. Leg and vertical stiffness were measured from kinetic and kinematic data, and electromyography (EMG) of five muscles of the preferred limb were recorded during hopping. Increases in pain scores (over 37%) occurred post-exercise and 24 and 48 hours later (p<0.001). A 7% decrease in maximal voluntary contraction occurred immediately post-exercise (p=0.019). Changes in knee kinematics during single-legged hopping were observed 168 hours post (p<0.05). No significant changes were observed in EMG, creatine kinase activity, leg, or vertical stiffness. Results indicate that knee mechanics may be altered to maintain consistent levels of leg and vertical stiffness when eccentric exercise-induced muscle damage is present in the lower legs. PMID:25325769

  3. Muscle stiffness estimation using a system identification technique applied to evoked mechanomyogram during cycling exercise.

    PubMed

    Uchiyama, Takanori; Saito, Kaito; Shinjo, Katsuya

    2015-12-01

    The aims of this study were to develop a method to extract the evoked mechanomyogram (MMG) during cycling exercise and to clarify muscle stiffness at various cadences, workloads, and power. Ten young healthy male participants were instructed to pedal a cycle ergometer at cadences of 40 and 60rpm. The loads were 4.9, 9.8, 14.7, and 19.6N, respectively. One electrical stimulus per two pedal rotations was applied to the vastus lateralis muscle at a knee angle of 80 in the down phase. MMGs were measured using a capacitor microphone, and the MMGs were divided into stimulated and non-stimulated sequences. Each sequence was synchronously averaged. The synchronously averaged non-stimulated MMG was subtracted from the synchronously averaged stimulated MMG to extract an evoked MMG. The evoked MMG system was identified and the poles of the transfer function were calculated. The poles and mass of the vastus lateralis muscle were used to estimate muscle stiffness. Results showed that muscle stiffness was 186-626N/m and proportional to the workloads and power. In conclusion, our method can be used to assess muscle stiffness proportional to the workload and power. PMID:26493234

  4. Influence of wheel configuration on wheelchair basketball performance: wheel stiffness, tyre type and tyre orientation.

    PubMed

    Mason, B S; Lemstra, M; van der Woude, L H V; Vegter, R; Goosey-Tolfrey, V L

    2015-04-01

    The aim of the current investigation was to explore the lateral stiffness of different sports wheelchair wheels available to athletes in 'new' and 'used' conditions and to determine the effect of (a) stiffness, (b) tyre type (clincher vs. tubular) and (c) tyre orientation on the physiological and biomechanical responses to submaximal and maximal effort propulsion specific to wheelchair basketball. Eight able-bodied individuals participated in the laboratory-based testing, which took place on a wheelchair ergometer at two fixed speeds (1.1 and 2.2 m s(-1)). Outcome measures were power output and physiological demand (oxygen uptake and heart rate). Three participants with experience of over-ground sports wheelchair propulsion also performed 2 20 m sprints in each wheel configuration. Results revealed that wheels differed significantly in lateral stiffness with the 'new' Spinergy wheel shown to be the stiffest (678.2 102.1 N mm(-1)). However the effects of stiffness on physiological demand were minimal compared to tyre type whereby tubular tyres significantly reduced the rolling resistance and power output in relation to clincher tyres. Therefore tyre type (and subsequently inflation pressure) remains the most important aspect of wheel specification for athletes to consider and monitor when configuring a sports wheelchair. PMID:25726151

  5. Passive stiffness of hindlimb muscles in anurans with distinct locomotor specializations.

    PubMed

    Danos, Nicole; Azizi, Emanuel

    2015-08-01

    Anurans (frogs and toads) have been shown to have relatively compliant skeletal muscles. Using a meta-analysis of published data we have found that muscle stiffness is negatively correlated with joint range of motion when examined across mammalian, anuran and bird species. Given this trend across a broad phylogenetic sample, we examined whether the relationship held true within anurans. We identified four species that differ in preferred locomotor mode and hence joint range of motion (Lithobates catesbeianus, Rhinella marina, Xenopus laevis and Kassina senegalensis) and hypothesized that smaller in vivo angles (more flexed) at the knee and ankle joint would be associated with more compliant extensor muscles. We measured passive muscle tension during cyclical stretching (20%) around L0 (sarcomere lengths of 2.2 ?m) in fiber bundles extracted from cruralis and plantaris muscles. We found no relationship between muscle stiffness and range of motion for either muscle-joint complex. There were no differences in the passive properties of the cruralis muscle among the four species, but the plantaris muscles of the Xenopus and Kassina were significantly stiffer than those of the other two species. Our results suggest that in anurans the stiffness of muscle fibers is a relatively minor contributor to stiffness at the level of joints and that variation in other anatomical properties including muscle-tendon architecture and joint mechanics as well as active control likely contribute more significantly to range of motion during locomotion. PMID:26006308

  6. Age, arterial stiffness, and components of blood pressure in Chinese adults.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Meili; Xu, Xiping; Wang, Xiaobin; Huo, Yong; Xu, Xin; Qin, Xianhui; Tang, Genfu; Xing, Houxun; Fan, Fangfang; Cui, Wei; Yang, Xinchun

    2014-12-01

    Blood pressure (BP) changes with age. We conducted a cross-sectional study in rural Chinese adults to investigate: (1) what is the relationship between age, arterial stiffness, and BP in Chinese men and women; and (2) to what degree can the age-BP relationship be explained by arterial stiffness, controlling for other covariables. These analyses included a total of 1688 subjects (males/females: 623/1065), aged 40 to 88 years. Among them, 353 (20.9%) had hypertension (defined as systolic blood pressure (SBP) ≥ 140 mm Hg or diastolic blood pressure (DBP) ≥ 90 mm Hg). Arterial stiffness was measured by brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV). baPWV appeared to be more strongly correlated with BP (including SBP, DBP, mean arterial pressure [MAP], pulse pressure [PP]) than age (P < 0.001 for comparisons between Spearman correlation coefficients). Furthermore, baPWV was associated with BP (including SBP, DBP, MAP, and PP) and risk of hypertension in a dose-response fashion, independent of age; in contrast, the age-BP associations were either attenuated or became negative after adjusting for baPWV. Arterial stiffness appears to be an independent contributor to hypertension, even after adjusting for age and other covariables. In contrast, age-BP associations became attenuated or negative after adjusting for baPWV. The utility of baPWV as a diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic indicator for hypertension warrants further investigation. PMID:25546666

  7. Management of the Stiff Finger: Evidence and Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Guang; McGlinn, Evan P.; Chung, Kevin C.

    2014-01-01

    SYNOPSIS The term stiff finger refers to a reduction in the range of motion in the finger, and it is a condition that has many different causes and involves a number of different structures. Almost all injuries of the fingers and some diseases can cause finger stiffness. Hand surgeons often face difficulty treating stiff fingers that are affected by irreversible soft tissues fibrosis. Stiff fingers can be divided into flexion and extension deformities. They can also be sub-classified into four categories according to the involved tissues extending from the skin to the joint capsule. Prevention of stiff fingers by judicious mobilization of the joints is prudent to avoid more complicated treatment after established stiffness occurs. Static progressive and dynamic splints have been considered as effective non-operative interventions to treat stiff fingers. Most authors believe force of joint distraction and time duration of stretching are two important factors to consider while applying a splint or cast. We also introduce the concepts of capsulotomy and collateral ligament release and other soft tissue release of the MCP and PIP joint in this article. Future outcomes research is vital to assessing the effectiveness of these surgical procedures and guiding postoperative treatment recommendations. PMID:24996467

  8. Mechanically Stiff Nanocomposite Hydrogels at Ultralow Nanoparticle Content.

    PubMed

    Jaiswal, Manish K; Xavier, Janet R; Carrow, James K; Desai, Prachi; Alge, Daniel; Gaharwar, Akhilesh K

    2016-01-26

    Although hydrogels are able to mimic native tissue microenvironments, their utility for biomedical applications is severely hampered due to limited mechanical stiffness and low toughness. Despite recent progress in designing stiff and tough hydrogels, it is still challenging to achieve a cell-friendly, high modulus construct. Here, we report a highly efficient method to reinforce collagen-based hydrogels using extremely low concentrations of a nanoparticulate-reinforcing agent that acts as a cross-link epicenter. Extraordinarily, the addition of these nanoparticles at a 10?000-fold lower concentration relative to polymer resulted in a more than 10-fold increase in mechanical stiffness and a 20-fold increase in toughness. We attribute the high stiffness of the nanocomposite network to the chemical functionality of the nanoparticles, which enabled the cross-linking of multiple polymeric chains to the nanoparticle surface. The mechanical stiffness of the nanoengineered hydrogel can be tailored between 0.2 and 200 kPa simply by manipulating the size of the nanoparticles (4, 8, and 12 nm), as well as the concentrations of the nanoparticles and polymer. Moreover, cells can be easily encapsulated within the nanoparticulate-reinforced hydrogel network, showing high viability. In addition, encapsulated cells were able to sense and respond to matrix stiffness. Overall, these results demonstrate a facile approach to modulate the mechanical stiffness of collagen-based hydrogels and may have broad utility for various biomedical applications, including use as tissue-engineered scaffolds and cell/protein delivery vehicles. PMID:26670176

  9. Menaquinone-7 supplementation improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women. A double-blind randomised clinical trial.

    PubMed

    Knapen, Marjo H J; Braam, Lavienja A J L M; Drummen, Nadja E; Bekers, Otto; Hoeks, Arnold P G; Vermeer, Cees

    2015-05-01

    Observational data suggest a link between menaquinone (MK, vitamin K2) intake and cardiovascular (CV) health. However, MK intervention trials with vascular endpoints are lacking. We investigated long-term effects of MK-7 (180 g MenaQ7/day) supplementation on arterial stiffness in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Healthy postmenopausal women (n=244) received either placebo (n=124) or MK-7 (n=120) for three years. Indices of local carotid stiffness (intima-media thickness IMT, Diameter end-diastole and Distension) were measured by echotracking. Regional aortic stiffness (carotid-femoral and carotid-radial Pulse Wave Velocity, cfPWV and crPWV, respectively) was measured using mechanotransducers. Circulating desphospho-uncarboxylated matrix Gla-protein (dp-ucMGP) as well as acute phase markers Interleukin-6 (IL-6), high-sensitive C-reactive protein (hsCRP), tumour necrosis factor-? (TNF-?) and markers for endothelial dysfunction Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule (VCAM), E-selectin, and Advanced Glycation Endproducts (AGEs) were measured. At baseline dp-ucMGP was associated with IMT, Diameter, cfPWV and with the mean z-scores of acute phase markers (APMscore) and of markers for endothelial dysfunction (EDFscore). After three year MK-7 supplementation cfPWV and the Stiffness Index ?significantly decreased in the total group, whereas distension, compliance, distensibility, Young's Modulus, and the local carotid PWV (cPWV) improved in women having a baseline Stiffness Index ? above the median of 10.8. MK-7 decreased dp-ucMGP by 50?% compared to placebo, but did not influence the markers for acute phase and endothelial dysfunction. In conclusion, long-term use of MK-7 supplements improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women, especially in women having a high arterial stiffness. PMID:25694037

  10. Effects of varying machine stiffness and contact area in UltraForm Finishing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briggs, Dennis E.; Echaves, Samantha; Pidgeon, Brendan; Travis, Nathan; Ellis, Jonathan D.

    2013-09-01

    UltraForm Finishing (UFF) is a deterministic, subaperture, computer numerically controlled, grinding and polishing platform designed by OptiPro Systems. UFF is used to grind and polish a variety optics from simple spherical to fully freeform, and numerous materials from glasses to optical ceramics. The UFF system consists of an abrasive belt around a compliant wheel that rotates and contacts the part to remove material. This work aims to measure the stiffness variations in the system and how it can affect material removal rates. The stiffness of the entire system is evaluated using a triaxial load cell to measure forces and a capacitance sensor to measure deviations in height. Because the wheel is conformal and elastic, the shapes of contact areas are also of interest. For the scope of this work, the shape of the contact area is estimated via removal spot. The measured forces and removal spot area are directly related to material removal rate through Preston's equation. Using our current testing apparatus, we will demonstrate stiffness measurements and contact areas for a single UFF belt during different states of its lifecycle and assess the material removal function from spot diagrams as a function of wear. This investigation will ultimately allow us to make better estimates of Preston's coefficient and develop spot-morphing models in an effort to more accurately predict instantaneous material removal functions throughout the lifetime of a belt.

  11. Assessment of Placental Stiffness Using Acoustic Radiation Force Impulse Elastography in Pregnant Women with Fetal Anomalies

    PubMed Central

    Göya, Cemil; Tunç, Senem; Teke, Memik; Hattapoğlu, Salih

    2016-01-01

    Objective We aimed to evaluate placental stiffness measured by acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) elastography in pregnant women in the second trimester with a normal fetus versus those with structural anomalies and non-structural findings. Materials and Methods Forty pregnant women carrying a fetus with structural anomalies diagnosed sonographically at 18–28 weeks of gestation comprised the study group. The control group consisted of 34 healthy pregnant women with a sonographically normal fetus at a similar gestational age. Placental shear wave velocity (SWV) was measured by ARFI elastography and compared between the two groups. Structural anomalies and non-structural findings were scored based on sonographic markers. Placental stiffness measurements were compared among fetus anomaly categories. Doppler parameters of umbilical and uterine arteries were compared with placental SWV measurements. Results All placental SWV measurements, including minimum SWV, maximum SWV, and mean SWV were significantly higher in the study group than the control group ([0.86 ± 0.2, 0.74 ± 0.1; p < 0.001], [1.89 ± 0.7, 1.59 ± 0.5; p = 0.04], and [1.26 ± 0.4, 1.09 ± 0.2; p = 0.01]), respectively. Conclusion Placental stiffness evaluated by ARFI elastography during the second trimester in pregnant women with fetuses with congenital structural anomalies is higher than that of pregnant women with normal fetuses. PMID:26957906

  12. Parametric signal amplification to create a stiff optical bar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Somiya, K.; Kataoka, Y.; Kato, J.; Saito, N.; Yano, K.

    2016-02-01

    An optical cavity consisting of optically trapped mirrors makes a resonant bar that can be stiffer than diamond. A limitation of the stiffness arises in the length of the optical bar as a consequence of the finite light speed. High laser power and light mass mirrors are essential for realization of a long and stiff optical bar that can be useful for example in the gravitational-wave detector aiming at the observation of a signal from neutron-star collisions, supernovae, etc. In this letter, we introduce a parametric signal amplification scheme that realizes the long and stiff optical bar with a non-linear crystal inside the signal-recycling cavity.

  13. Changes in force and stiffness induced by fatigue and intracellular acidification in frog muscle fibres.

    PubMed Central

    Edman, K A; Lou, F

    1990-01-01

    1. Changes in force and stiffness were recorded simultaneously during 1 s isometric (fixed ends) tetani of single fibres isolated from the anterior tibialis muscle of Rana temporaria (temperature 1-3 degrees C; sarcomere length, 2.10 micron). Stiffness was measured as the change in force that occurred in response to a 4 kHz sinusoidal length oscillation of the fibre. Some experiments were performed in which stiffness was determined from a fast (0.2 ms) length step that was applied to a 'tendon-free' segment of the muscle fibre during the tetanus plateau. 2. A moderate degree of fatigue was produced by decreasing the time between tetani from 300 s (control) to 15 s. By this treatment the maximum tetanic force (Ftet) was reversibly reduced to 70-75% of the control value. Maximum tetanic stiffness (Stet) was related to Ftet according to the following regression (both variables expressed as percentage of their control values): Stet = 0.369 Ftet + 62.91 (correlation coefficient, 0.95; P less than 0.001). A 25% decrease in isometric force during fatigue was thus associated with merely 9% reduction of fibre stiffness. 3. Whereas the rate of rise of force during tetanus was markedly reduced by fatiguing stimulation, the rate of rise of stiffness was only slightly affected. 4. Intracellular acidification (produced by raised extracellular CO2 concentration) largely reproduced the contractile changes observed during fatigue. However, for a given decrease in tetanic force there was a smaller reduction in fibre stiffness during acidosis than during fatigue. 5. Caffeine (0.5 mM) added to the fibre after development of fatigue and intracellular acidosis greatly potentiated the isometric twitch but did not affect maximum tetanic force. This finding provides evidence that the contractile system was fully activated during the tetanus plateau both in the fatigued state and during acidosis. 6. The results suggest that the decrease in contractile strength after frequent tetanization (intervals between tetani, 15 s) is attributable to altered kinetics of cross-bridge function leading to reduced number of active cross-bridges and, most significantly, to reduced force output of the individual bridge. The possible role of increased intracellular H+ concentration in the development of muscle fatigue is discussed. PMID:2391650

  14. On the characteristics of a quasi-zero stiffness isolator using Euler buckled beam as negative stiffness corrector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xingtian; Huang, Xiuchang; Hua, Hongxing

    2013-07-01

    The characteristics of a passive nonlinear isolator which is developed by parallelly adding a negative stiffness corrector to a linear spring are studied. The negative stiffness corrector, which is formed by Euler buckled beams can offer negative stiffness to the isolator at the equilibrium position in order to lower the overall dynamic stiffness of the isolator and without sacrificing the support capacity compared to the linear isolator. The static characteristics of the stiffness corrector as well as the nonlinear isolator are presented and the system parameters which can offer zero stiffness at the equilibrium point are derived. The restoring force of the nonlinear isolator after loaded is approximated using the Taylor expansion to pure cubic stiffness. The dynamic equation is established and the frequency response curves (FRCs) are obtained by using the Harmonic Balance Method (HBM) for both force and displacement excitations. The force and displacement transmissibility of the nonlinear isolator are defined and investigated, and the isolation performance is compared with an equivalent linear isolator which can support the same mass with the same static deflection as the nonlinear isolator. The effects of the amplitude of the excitation and damping ratio on the transmissibility performance are considered. The results demonstrate that the proposed zero dynamic stiffness nonlinear isolator can outperform the equivalent linear one for certain frequencies, and the performance is related to the magnitude of the excitation amplitude. Unlike the linear isolator, in the nonlinear isolator for base displacement excitation, unbounded response or transmissibility can occur which is not observed for force excitation case. The performance can also be improved by adjusting the configurations of the beams. Some useful guidelines for choosing system parameters such as the properties of the beams and the stiffness relationship between the beams and the linear spring are given.

  15. An experimental and morphometric test of the relationship between vertebral morphology and joint stiffness in Nile crocodiles (Crocodylus niloticus).

    PubMed

    Molnar, Julia L; Pierce, Stephanie E; Hutchinson, John R

    2014-03-01

    Despite their semi-aquatic mode of life, modern crocodylians use a wide range of terrestrial locomotor behaviours, including asymmetrical gaits otherwise only found in mammals. The key to these diverse abilities may lie in the axial skeleton. Correlations between vertebral morphology and both intervertebral joint stiffness and locomotor behaviour have been found in other animals, but the vertebral mechanics of crocodylians have not yet been experimentally and quantitatively tested. We measured the passive mechanics and morphology of the thoracolumbar vertebral column in Crocodylus niloticus in order to validate a method to infer intervertebral joint stiffness based on morphology. Passive stiffness of eight thoracic and lumbar joints was tested in dorsal extension, ventral flexion and mediolateral flexion using cadaveric specimens. Fifteen measurements that we deemed to be potential correlates of stiffness were taken from each vertebra and statistically tested for correlation with joint stiffness. We found that the vertebral column of C. niloticus is stiffer in dorsoventral flexion than in lateral flexion and, in contrast to that of many mammals, shows an increase in joint stiffness in the lumbar region. Our findings suggest that the role of the axial column in crocodylian locomotion may be functionally different from that in mammals, even during analogous gaits. A moderate proportion of variation in joint stiffness (R(2)=0.279-0.520) was predicted by centrum width and height, neural spine angle and lamina width. These results support the possible utility of some vertebral morphometrics in predicting mechanical properties of the vertebral column in crocodiles, which also should be useful for forming functional hypotheses of axial motion during locomotion in extinct archosaurs. PMID:24574389

  16. The acute effect of maximal exercise on central and peripheral arterial stiffness indices and hemodynamics in children and adults.

    PubMed

    Melo, Xavier; Fernhall, Bo; Santos, Diana A; Pinto, Rita; Pimenta, Nuno M; Sardinha, Luís B; Santa-Clara, Helena

    2016-03-01

    This study compared the effects of a bout of maximal running exercise on arterial stiffness in children and adults. Right carotid blood pressure and artery stiffness indices measured by pulse wave velocity (PWV), compliance and distensibility coefficients, stiffness index α and β (echo-tracking), contralateral carotid blood pressure, and upper and lower limb and central/aortic PWV (applanation tonometry) were taken at rest and 10 min after a bout of maximal treadmill running in 34 children (7.38 ± 0.38 years) and 45 young adults (25.22 ± 0.91 years) having similar aerobic potential. Two-by-two repeated measures analysis of variance and analysis of covariance were used to detect differences with exercise between groups. Carotid pulse pressure (PP; η(2) = 0.394) increased more in adults after exercise (p < 0.05). Compliance (η(2) = 0.385) decreased in particular in adults and in those with high changes in distending pressure, similarly to stiffness index α and β. Carotid PWV increased more in adults and was related to local changes in PP but not mean arterial pressure (MAP). Stiffness in the lower limbs decreased (η(2) = 0.115) but apparently only in those with small MAP changes (η(2) = 0.111). No significant exercise or group interaction effects were found when variables were adjusted to height. An acute bout of maximal exercise can alter arterial stiffness and hemodynamics in the carotid artery and within the active muscle beds. Arterial stiffness and hemodynamic response to metabolic demands during exercise in children simply reflect their smaller body size and may not indicate a particular physiological difference compared with adults. PMID:26842667

  17. Mechanomyogram amplitude correlates with human gastrocnemius medialis muscle and tendon stiffness both before and after acute passive stretching.

    PubMed

    Longo, Stefano; Cè, Emiliano; Rampichini, Susanna; Devoto, Michela; Limonta, Eloisa; Esposito, Fabio

    2014-10-01

    The study aimed to assess the level of correlation between muscle-tendon unit (MTU) stiffness and mechanomyogram (MMG) signal amplitude of the human gastrocnemius medialis muscle, both before and after acute passive stretching. The passive torque (Tpass), electrically evoked peak torque (pT) and myotendinous junction displacement were determined at different angles of dorsiflexion (0, 10 and 20 deg), while maximum voluntary isometric torque (Tmax) was assessed only at 0 deg. Measurements were repeated after a bout of passive stretching. From the MMG signal, the root mean square (RMS) and peak to peak (p-p) were calculated. The MTU, muscle and tendon stiffness were determined by ultrasound and Tpass measurements. Before stretching, correlations between MMG RMS and MTU, muscle and tendon stiffness were found (R(2) = 0.22-0.46). After stretching, Tpass, Tmax, pT and MTU, muscle and tendon stiffness decreased by 25 ± 7, 16 ± 2, 9 ± 2, 22 ± 7, 23 ± 8 and 28 ± 5%, respectively (P < 0.05). During voluntary and electrically evoked contractions, MMG p-p decreased by 9 ± 2 and 5 ± 1%, while MMG RMS increased by 48 ± 7 and 50 ± 8%, respectively (P < 0.05). Correlations between MMG RMS and MTU, muscle and tendon stiffness were still present after stretching (R(2) = 0.44-0.60). In conclusion, correlations between MMG RMS and stiffness exist both before and after stretching, suggesting that a slacker MTU leads to larger muscle fibre oscillations. However, care must be taken in using MMG amplitude as an indirect index to estimate stiffness owing to the relatively small R(2) values of the investigated correlations. PMID:24951499

  18. Equivalent Dynamic Stiffness Mapping technique for identifying nonlinear structural elements from frequency response functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, X.; Zheng, G. T.

    2016-02-01

    A simple and general Equivalent Dynamic Stiffness Mapping technique is proposed for identifying the parameters or the mathematical model of a nonlinear structural element with steady-state primary harmonic frequency response functions (FRFs). The Equivalent Dynamic Stiffness is defined as the complex ratio between the internal force and the displacement response of unknown element. Obtained with the test data of responses' frequencies and amplitudes, the real and imaginary part of Equivalent Dynamic Stiffness are plotted as discrete points in a three dimensional space over the displacement amplitude and the frequency, which are called the real and the imaginary Equivalent Dynamic Stiffness map, respectively. These points will form a repeatable surface as the Equivalent Dynamic stiffness is only a function of the corresponding data as derived in the paper. The mathematical model of the unknown element can then be obtained by surface-fitting these points with special functions selected by priori knowledge of the nonlinear type or with ordinary polynomials if the type of nonlinearity is not pre-known. An important merit of this technique is its capability of dealing with strong nonlinearities owning complicated frequency response behaviors such as jumps and breaks in resonance curves. In addition, this technique could also greatly simplify the test procedure. Besides there is no need to pre-identify the underlying linear parameters, the method uses the measured data of excitation forces and responses without requiring a strict control of the excitation force during the test. The proposed technique is demonstrated and validated with four classical single-degree-of-freedom (SDOF) numerical examples and one experimental example. An application of this technique for identification of nonlinearity from multiple-degree-of-freedom (MDOF) systems is also illustrated.

  19. Shear Wave Elastography of Passive Skeletal Muscle Stiffness: Influences of Sex and Age throughout Adulthood

    PubMed Central

    Eby, Sarah F.; Cloud, Beth A.; Brandenburg, Joline E.; Giambini, Hugo; Song, Pengfei; Chen, Shigao; LeBrasseur, Nathan K.; An, Kai-Nan

    2014-01-01

    Background Numerous structural and compositional changes related not only to age, but also activity level and sex may affect skeletal muscle stiffness across the adult age-span. Measurement techniques available thus far have largely limited passive stiffness evaluations to those of entire joints and muscle-tendon units. Shear wave elastography is an increasingly popular ultrasound technique for evaluating the mechanical properties of skeletal muscle tissue. The purpose of this study was to quantify the passive stiffness, or shear modulus, of the biceps brachii throughout adulthood in flexed and extended elbow positions. We hypothesized that shear modulus would be higher in males relative to females, and with advanced age in both sexes. Methods Shear wave elastography quantified biceps brachii stiffness at 90 elbow flexion and full extension in a large sample of adults between 2194 years old (n=133; 47 males). Findings Regression analysis found sex and age were significant parameters for older adults (>60 years) in full extension. As expected, shear modulus values increased with advancing age; however, shear modulus values for females tended to be higher than those for males. Interpretation This study begins to establish normative trends for skeletal muscle shear modulus throughout adulthood. Specifically, this work establishes for the first time that the higher passive joint torque often found in males relative to females likely relates to parameters other than muscle shear modulus. Indeed, perhaps increases in skeletal muscle passive stiffness, though potentially altering the length-tension curve, serve a protective role maintaining the tendon-muscle-tendon length-tension curve within a functional range. PMID:25483294

  20. Improved throughput traction microscopy reveals pivotal role for matrix stiffness in fibroblast contractility and TGF-? responsiveness.

    PubMed

    Marinkovi?, Aleksandar; Mih, Justin D; Park, Jin-Ah; Liu, Fei; Tschumperlin, Daniel J

    2012-08-01

    Lung fibroblast functions such as matrix remodeling and activation of latent transforming growth factor-?1 (TGF-?1) are associated with expression of the myofibroblast phenotype and are directly linked to fibroblast capacity to generate force and deform the extracellular matrix. However, the study of fibroblast force-generating capacities through methods such as traction force microscopy is hindered by low throughput and time-consuming procedures. In this study, we improved at the detail level methods for higher-throughput traction measurements on polyacrylamide hydrogels using gel-surface-bound fluorescent beads to permit autofocusing and automated displacement mapping, and transduction of fibroblasts with a fluorescent label to streamline cell boundary identification. Together these advances substantially improve the throughput of traction microscopy and allow us to efficiently compute the forces exerted by lung fibroblasts on substrates spanning the stiffness range present in normal and fibrotic lung tissue. Our results reveal that lung fibroblasts dramatically alter the forces they transmit to the extracellular matrix as its stiffness changes, with very low forces generated on matrices as compliant as normal lung tissue. Moreover, exogenous TGF-?1 selectively accentuates tractions on stiff matrices, mimicking fibrotic lung, but not on physiological stiffness matrices, despite equivalent changes in Smad2/3 activation. Taken together, these results demonstrate a pivotal role for matrix mechanical properties in regulating baseline and TGF-?1-stimulated contraction of lung fibroblasts and suggest that stiff fibrotic lung tissue may promote myofibroblast activation through contractility-driven events, whereas normal lung tissue compliance may protect against such feedback amplification of fibroblast activation. PMID:22659883

  1. Roles of Arterial Stiffness and Blood Pressure in Hypertension-Associated Cognitive Decline in Healthy Adults.

    PubMed

    Hajjar, Ihab; Goldstein, Felicia C; Martin, Greg S; Quyyumi, Arshed A

    2016-01-01

    Although there is strong evidence that hypertension leads to cognitive decline, especially in the executive domain, the relationship between blood pressure and cognition has been conflicted. Hypertension is characterized by blood pressure elevation and increased arterial stiffness. We aimed at investigating whether arterial stiffness would be superior to blood pressure in predicting cognitive decline and explaining the hypertension-executive decline association. A randomly selected asymptomatic population (n=591, age=49.2 years, 70% women, 27% black, and education=18 years) underwent annual vascular and cognitive assessments. Cognition was assessed using computerized versions commonly used cognitive tests, and principal component analysis was used for deriving cognitive scores for executive function, memory, and working memory. Arterial stiffness was measured by carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV). Higher PWV, but not blood pressure, was associated with a steeper decline in executive (P=0.0002), memory (P=0.05), and working memory (P=0.02) scores after adjusting for demographics, education, and baseline cognitive performance. This remained true after adjusting for hypertension. Hypertension was associated with greater decline in executive score (P=0.0029) and those with combined hypertension and elevated PWV (>7 m/s) had the greatest decline in executive score (P value hypertensionPWV=0.02). PWV explained the association between hypertension and executive function (P value for hypertension=0.0029 versus 0.24 when adjusting for PWV). In healthy adults, increased arterial stiffness is superior to blood pressure in predicting cognitive decline in all domains and in explaining the hypertension-executive function association. Arterial stiffness, especially in hypertension, may be a target in the prevention of cognitive decline. PMID:26527049

  2. Comparison of the acute impact of maximal arm and leg aerobic exercise on arterial stiffness.

    PubMed

    Ranadive, S M; Fahs, C A; Yan, H; Rossow, L M; Agiovlasitis, S; Fernhall, B

    2012-07-01

    Acute aerobic exercise decreases arterial stiffness based on the intensity of the exercise and the arterial segment studied. Arm exercise may differentially affect arterial stiffness compared to leg exercise but this has not been studied. We hypothesized that maximal aerobic exercise would reduce local peripheral pulse wave velocity i.e. femoral-dorsalis pedis (LPWV) following leg exercise and carotid-radial (APWV) following arm exercise without any crossover effect. The main purpose of the study is to compare the effects of maximal arm versus leg aerobic exercise on peripheral and central arterial stiffness. Fifteen healthy participants (9 males and 6 females, 25 5 years) performed maximal arm-ergometer and leg-ergometer exercise in a randomized, crossover design. Peripheral and central pulse wave velocities (PWV) were obtained using applanation tonometry before and 10 min after each maximal exercise bout. 2 2 repeated measures analysis of variance was used to detect differences between conditions. There was a significant interaction in the APWV between the two exercise modes. However, there was no condition or interaction effect on LPWV following maximal arm versus leg exercise. There was no significant difference in central PWV between conditions or with time. There was no change in MAP (75 6-77 3) after maximal arm exercise as compared to the maximal leg exercise (73 6-80 2). Arm exercise produced a more generalized effect on arterial stiffness than leg exercise. The prescription of upper limb exercise may be considered for purposes of eliciting post-exercise systemic changes in arterial stiffness. PMID:22083536

  3. Improved throughput traction microscopy reveals pivotal role for matrix stiffness in fibroblast contractility and TGF-? responsiveness

    PubMed Central

    Marinkovi?, Aleksandar; Mih, Justin D.; Park, Jin-Ah; Liu, Fei

    2012-01-01

    Lung fibroblast functions such as matrix remodeling and activation of latent transforming growth factor-?1 (TGF-?1) are associated with expression of the myofibroblast phenotype and are directly linked to fibroblast capacity to generate force and deform the extracellular matrix. However, the study of fibroblast force-generating capacities through methods such as traction force microscopy is hindered by low throughput and time-consuming procedures. In this study, we improved at the detail level methods for higher-throughput traction measurements on polyacrylamide hydrogels using gel-surface-bound fluorescent beads to permit autofocusing and automated displacement mapping, and transduction of fibroblasts with a fluorescent label to streamline cell boundary identification. Together these advances substantially improve the throughput of traction microscopy and allow us to efficiently compute the forces exerted by lung fibroblasts on substrates spanning the stiffness range present in normal and fibrotic lung tissue. Our results reveal that lung fibroblasts dramatically alter the forces they transmit to the extracellular matrix as its stiffness changes, with very low forces generated on matrices as compliant as normal lung tissue. Moreover, exogenous TGF-?1 selectively accentuates tractions on stiff matrices, mimicking fibrotic lung, but not on physiological stiffness matrices, despite equivalent changes in Smad2/3 activation. Taken together, these results demonstrate a pivotal role for matrix mechanical properties in regulating baseline and TGF-?1-stimulated contraction of lung fibroblasts and suggest that stiff fibrotic lung tissue may promote myofibroblast activation through contractility-driven events, whereas normal lung tissue compliance may protect against such feedback amplification of fibroblast activation. PMID:22659883

  4. Anterior Glenohumeral Laxity and Stiffness After a Shoulder-Strengthening Program in Collegiate Cheerleaders

    PubMed Central

    Laudner, Kevin G; Metz, Betsy; Thomas, David Q

    2013-01-01

    Context Approximately 62% of all cheerleaders sustain some type of orthopaedic injury during their cheerleading careers. Furthermore, the occurrence of such injuries has led to inquiry regarding optimal prevention techniques. One possible cause of these injuries may be related to inadequate conditioning in cheerleaders. Objective To determine whether a strength and conditioning program produces quantifiable improvements in anterior glenohumeral (GH) laxity and stiffness. Design Descriptive laboratory study. Setting University laboratory. Patients or Other Participants A sample of 41 collegiate cheerleaders (24 experimental and 17 control participants) volunteered. No participants had a recent history (in the past 6 months) of upper extremity injury or any history of upper extremity surgery. Intervention(s) The experimental group completed a 6-week strength and conditioning program between the pretest and posttest measurements; the control group did not perform any strength training between tests. Main Outcome Measure(s) We measured anterior GH laxity and stiffness with an instrumented arthrometer. We conducted a group time analysis of variance with repeated measures on time (P < .05) to determine differences between groups. Results A significant interaction was demonstrated, with the control group having more anterior GH laxity at the posttest session than the strengthening group (P = .03, partial ?2 = 0.11). However, no main effect for time (P = .92) or group (P = .97) was observed. In another significant interaction, the control group had less anterior GH stiffness at the posttest session than the strengthening group (P = .03, partial ?2 = 0.12). Main effects for time (P = .02) and group (P = .004) were also significant. Conclusions Cheerleaders who participate in a shoulder-strengthening program developed less anterior GH laxity and more stiffness than cheerleaders in the control group. PMID:23672322

  5. Torque-stiffness-controlled dynamic walking with central pattern generators.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yan; Vanderborght, Bram; Van Ham, Ronald; Wang, Qining

    2014-12-01

    Walking behavior is modulated by controlling joint torques in most existing passivity-based bipeds. Controlled Passive Walking with adaptable stiffness exhibits controllable natural motions and energy efficient gaits. In this paper, we propose torque-stiffness-controlled dynamic bipedal walking, which extends the concept of Controlled Passive Walking by introducing structured control parameters and a bio-inspired control method with central pattern generators. The proposed walking paradigm is beneficial in clarifying the respective effects of the external actuation and the internal natural dynamics. We present a seven-link biped model to validate the presented walking. Effects of joint torque and joint stiffness on gait selection, walking performance and walking pattern transitions are studied in simulations. The work in this paper develops a new solution of motion control of bipedal robots with adaptable stiffness and provides insights of efficient and sophisticated walking gaits of humans. PMID:25128320

  6. Improved Equivalent Linearization Implementations Using Nonlinear Stiffness Evaluation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rizzi, Stephen A.; Muravyov, Alexander A.

    2001-01-01

    This report documents two new implementations of equivalent linearization for solving geometrically nonlinear random vibration problems of complicated structures. The implementations are given the acronym ELSTEP, for "Equivalent Linearization using a STiffness Evaluation Procedure." Both implementations of ELSTEP are fundamentally the same in that they use a novel nonlinear stiffness evaluation procedure to numerically compute otherwise inaccessible nonlinear stiffness terms from commercial finite element programs. The commercial finite element program MSC/NASTRAN (NASTRAN) was chosen as the core of ELSTEP. The FORTRAN implementation calculates the nonlinear stiffness terms and performs the equivalent linearization analysis outside of NASTRAN. The Direct Matrix Abstraction Program (DMAP) implementation performs these operations within NASTRAN. Both provide nearly identical results. Within each implementation, two error minimization approaches for the equivalent linearization procedure are available - force and strain energy error minimization. Sample results for a simply supported rectangular plate are included to illustrate the analysis procedure.

  7. Operator-Based Preconditioning of Stiff Hyperbolic Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Reynolds, Daniel R.; Samtaney, Ravi; Woodward, Carol S.

    2009-02-09

    We introduce an operator-based scheme for preconditioning stiff components encoun- tered in implicit methods for hyperbolic systems of partial differential equations posed on regular grids. The method is based on a directional splitting of the implicit operator, followed by a char- acteristic decomposition of the resulting directional parts. This approach allows for solution to any number of characteristic components, from the entire system to only the fastest, stiffness-inducing waves. We apply the preconditioning method to stiff hyperbolic systems arising in magnetohydro- dynamics and gas dynamics. We then present numerical results showing that this preconditioning scheme works well on problems where the underlying stiffness results from the interaction of fast transient waves with slowly-evolving dynamics, scales well to large problem sizes and numbers of processors, and allows for additional customization based on the specific problems under study.

  8. Extreme stiffness tunability through the excitation of nonlinear defect modes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serra-Garcia, M.; Lydon, J.; Daraio, C.

    2016-01-01

    The incremental stiffness characterizes the variation of a material's force response to a small deformation change. In lattices with noninteracting vibrational modes, the excitation of localized states does not have any effect on material properties, such as the incremental stiffness. We report that, in nonlinear lattices, driving a defect mode introduces changes in the static force-displacement relation of the material. By varying the defect excitation frequency and amplitude, the incremental stiffness can be tuned continuously to arbitrarily large positive or negative values. Furthermore, the defect excitation parameters also determine the displacement region at which the force-displacement relation is being tuned. We demonstrate this phenomenon experimentally in a compressed array of spheres tuning its incremental stiffness from a finite positive value to zero and continuously down to negative infinity.

  9. Stiffness of Carpentry Connections - Numerical Modelling vs. Experimental Test

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kekeliak, Milo; Gocl, Jozef; Vi?an, Josef

    2015-12-01

    In this paper, numerical modelling of the traditional carpentry connection with mortise and tenon is presented. Numerical modelling is focused on its stiffness and the results are compared to results of experimental tests carried out by (Feio, 2005) [6]. To consider soft behaviour of wood in carpentry connections, which are related to its surface roughness and geometrical accuracy of the contact surfaces, the characteristics of the normal contact stiffness, determined experimentally, are introduced in the numerical model. Parametric study by means of numerical modelling with regard to the sensitivity of connection stiffness to contact stiffness is presented. Based on the study results, in conclusion there are presented relevant differences between the results of numerical modelling and experimental tests (Feio, 2005) [6].

  10. Robust time-domain identification of mass stiffness, and damping matrices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roemer, Michael J.; Mook, D. Joseph

    1990-01-01

    Accurate estimates of the mass, stiffness, and damping characteristics of a structure is necessary for determining the control laws best suited for active control methodologies. There are several modal identification techniques available for determining the frequencies, damping ratios, and mode shapes of a structure. However, modal identification methods in both the frequency and time domains have difficulties for certain circumstances. Frequency domain techniques which utilize the steady-state response from various harmonic inputs often encounter difficulties when the frequencies are closely distributed, the structure exhibits a high degree of damping, or the steady-state condition is hard to establish. Time domain techniques have produced successful results, but lack robustness with respect to measurement noise. In this paper, two identification techniques and an estimation method are combined to form a time-domain technique to accurately identify the mass, stiffness, and damping matrices from noisy measurements.

  11. Study of flexural stiffness in delaminated composite plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwon, Y. W.; Weiseman, K.

    This paper studied the effect of delamination on the flexural stiffness of laminated composite plates using the FEM. A plate bending element, which has displacements as degrees of freedom at nodes but not rotations, was used. The plate bending element includes the transverse shear deformation. Both angle-ply (+/- theta deg) and cross-ply (0/90 deg) laminates were considered with delamination between the two layers. The reduction in flexural stiffness was calculated by comparing deflections.

  12. Gear mesh stiffness and load sharing in planetary gearing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasuba, R.; August, R.

    1984-01-01

    An interactive computerized analysis was developed for determining load sharing among planetary gears. The load sharing is established as a function of transmitted torque, degree of sun gear fixity, component flexibility, gear tooth quality, and phasing of individual planet gears. A nonlinear variable gear tooth mesh stiffness model was used to simulate the sun/plant and planet/ring gear meshes. The determined load sharing and gear mesh stiffness parameters then can be used for the subsequent assessment of dynamic load factors.

  13. Terrace Width Distributions for Steps of Alternating Stiffness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yancey, Jeremy; Richards, Howard L.

    2003-03-01

    Some vicinal crystal surfaces are characterized by alternating A-type and B-type steps which have different stiffnesses. Here we show that the same phenomenological approach which gives rise to the ``generalized Wigner distribution" (GWD) when all steps have the same stiffness again gives the GWD if a certain term is small enough. Our Monte Carlo simulations of the TSK model indicate that the GWD does very well here also.

  14. Pediatric stiff-person syndrome with renal failure

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, M. Veerendra; Savida, P.

    2016-01-01

    Stiff-person syndrome (SPS) is an autoimmune neuronitis with progressive myoclonus and stiffness. It is a rare but treatable disorder with few case reports in children. SPS is due to autoantibodies against the enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase which is present in neuronal and nonneuronal tissues. This is the case report of an 8-year-old boy with clinical and investigational features suggestive of SPS with associated myoglobin-induced renal failure, who completely recovered with treatment.

  15. The initial torsional stiffness of shells with interior webs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuhn, Paul

    1935-01-01

    A method of calculating the stresses and torsional stiffness of thin shells with interior webs is summarized. Comparisons between experimental and calculated results are given for 3 duralumin beams, 5 stainless steel beams and 2 duralumin wings. It is concluded that if the theoretical stiffness is multiplied by a correction factor of 0.9, experimental values may be expected to check calculated values within about 10 percent.

  16. The Effects of Sex, Joint Angle, and the Gastrocnemius Muscle on Passive Ankle Joint Complex Stiffness

    PubMed Central

    DeMont, Richard G.; Ryu, Keeho; Lephart, Scott M.

    2001-01-01

    Objective: To assess the effects of sex, joint angle, and the gastrocnemius muscle on passive ankle joint complex stiffness (JCS). Design and Setting: A repeated-measures design was employed using sex as a between-subjects factor and joint angle and inclusion of the gastrocnemius muscle as within-subject factors. All testing was conducted in a neuromuscular research laboratory. Subjects: Twelve female and 12 male healthy, physically active subjects between the ages of 18 and 30 years volunteered for participation in this study. The dominant leg was used for testing. No subjects had a history of lower extremity musculoskeletal injury or circulatory or neurologic disorders. Measurements: We determined passive ankle JCS by measuring resistance to passive dorsiflexion (5s?1) from 23 plantar flexion (PF) to 13 dorsiflexion (DF). Angular position and torque data were collected from a dynamometer under 2 conditions designed to include or reduce the contribution of the gastrocnemius muscle. Separate fourth-order polynomial equations relating angular position and torque were constructed for each trial. Stiffness values (Nmdegree?1) were calculated at 10 PF, neutral (NE), and 10 DF using the slope of the line at each respective position. Results: Significant condition-by-position and sex-by-position interactions and significant main effects for sex, position, and condition were revealed by a 3-way (sex-by-position, condition-by-position) analysis of variance. Post hoc analyses of the condition-by-position interaction revealed significantly higher stiffness values under the knee-straight condition compared with the knee-bent condition at both ankle NE and 10 DF. Within each condition, stiffness values at each position were significantly higher as the ankle moved into DF. Post hoc analysis of the sex-by-position interaction revealed significantly higher stiffness values at 10 DF in the male subjects. Post hoc analysis of the position main effect revealed that as the ankle moved into dorsiflexion, the stiffness at each position became significantly higher than at the previous position. Conclusions: The gastrocnemius contributes significantly to passive ankle JCS, thereby providing a scientific basis for clinicians incorporating stretching regimens into rehabilitation programs. Further research is warranted considering the cause and application of the sex-by-position interaction. PMID:12937478

  17. Energy cost of running and Achilles tendon stiffness in man and woman trained runners

    PubMed Central

    Fletcher, Jared R.; Pfister, Ted R.; MacIntosh, Brian R.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The energy cost of running (Erun), a key determinant of distance running performance, is influenced by several factors. Although it is important to express Erun as energy cost, no study has used this approach to compare similarly trained men and women. Furthermore, the relationship between Achilles tendon (AT) stiffness and Erun has not been compared between men and women. Therefore, our purpose was to determine if sex?specific differences in Erun and/or AT stiffness existed. Erun (kcal kg?1 km?1) was determined by indirect calorimetry at 75%, 85%, and 95% of the speed at lactate threshold (sLT) on 11 man (mean SEM, 35 1 years, 177 1 cm, 78 1 kg, 1 = 56 1 mL kg?1 min?1) and 18 woman (33 1 years, 165 1 cm, 58 1 kg, 2 = 50 0.3 mL kg?1 min?1) runners. AT stiffness was measured using ultrasound with dynamometry. Man Erun was 1.01 0.06, 1.04 0.07, and 1.07 0.07 kcal kg?1 km?1. Woman Erun was 1.05 0.10, 1.07 0.09, and 1.09 0.10 kcal kg?1 km?1. There was no significant sex effect for Erun or RER, but both increased with speed (P < 0.01) expressed relative to sLT. High?range AT stiffness was 191 5.1 N mm?1 for men and 125 5.5 N mm?1, for women (P < 0.001). The relationship between low?range AT stiffness and Erun was significant at all measured speeds for women (r2 = 0.198, P < 0.05), but not for the men. These results indicate that when Erun is measured at the same relative intensity, there are no sex?specific differences in Erun or substrate use. Furthermore, differences in Erun cannot be explained solely by differences in AT stiffness. PMID:24744857

  18. Changes in human knee ligament stiffness secondary to osteoarthritis.

    PubMed

    Fishkin, Zair; Miller, David; Ritter, Christopher; Ziv, Israel

    2002-03-01

    Stiffness of the medial (MCL) and lateral (LCL) collateral ligaments was compared between a group of 10 patients undergoing total knee arthroplasty for varus degenerative osteoarthritis (OAP), a group of 10 osteoarthritic cadaveric knees (OAC), and a group of 10 non-osteoarthritic cadaveric knees (NOA). A load-elongation curve was obtained for the medial and lateral compartments of each knee using an instrumented Moreland spreader. A strain gage (SG) was attached to the spreader handle and strain was calibrated to load applied against the spread distance. In extension, medial compartment stiffness of the OAP, OAC, and NOA groups was 60.7+/-16, 52.8+/-9.3 and 21.4+/-5.0 N/mm, respectively. Lateral compartment stiffness in extension was 29.2+/-9.2, 33.3+/-10.3 and 19.5+/-5.3 N/mm, for OAP, OAC, and NOA, respectively. Differences in stiffness between the OAP and OAC groups were not statistically significant (p > 0.05). However, the osteoarthritic groups (OAP and OAC) demonstrated a statistically significantly (p < 0.05) increase in ligament stiffness when compared to the NOA group. Following knee arthroplasty, stiffer medial structures in extension may lead to flexion contracture and accelerated polyethylene wear. Adequate bone resection, in conjunction with soft tissue release may alleviate the threefold increase in stiffness observed in the medial compartment secondary to OA without jeopardizing joint stability. PMID:11918298

  19. Mesenchymal Stem Cell Durotaxis Depends on Substrate Stiffness Gradient Strength

    PubMed Central

    Vincent, Ludovic G.; Choi, Yu Suk; Alonso-Latorre, Baldomero; del Álamo, Juan C.; Engler, Adam J.

    2013-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) respond to niche elasticity, which varies between and within tissues. Stiffness gradients result from pathological conditions but also occur through normal variation, e.g. muscle. MSCs undergo directed migration even in response to shallow stiffness gradients before differentiating. More refined gradients of both stiffness range and strength are needed to better understand mechanical regulation of migration in normal and disease pathologies. We describe polyacrylamide stiffness gradient fabrication using three distinct systems that generate stiffness gradients of physiological (1 Pa/µm), pathological (10 Pa/µm), and step (≥ 100Pa/um) strength spanning physiologically relevant stiffness for most soft tissue, i.e. 1–12 kPa. MSCs migrated to the stiffest region for each gradient. Time-lapse microscopy revealed that migration velocity scaled directly with gradient strength. Directed migration was reduced in the presence of the contractile agonist lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and cytoskeletal-perturbing drugs nocodazole and cytochalasin; LPA- and nocodazole-treated cells remained spread and protrusive, while cytochalasin-treated cells did not. Untreated and nocodazole-treated cells spread in a similar manner, but nocodazole-treated cells had greatly diminished traction forces. These data suggest that actin is required for migration whereas microtubules are required for directed migration. The data also imply that in vivo, MSCs may have a more significant contribution to repairs in stiffer regions where they may preferentially accumulate. PMID:23390141

  20. Non-crossbridge stiffness in active muscle fibres.

    PubMed

    Colombini, Barbara; Nocella, Marta; Bagni, Maria Angela

    2016-01-01

    Stretching of an activated skeletal muscle induces a transient tension increase followed by a period during which the tension remains elevated well above the isometric level at an almost constant value. This excess of tension in response to stretching has been called 'static tension' and attributed to an increase in fibre stiffness above the resting value, named 'static stiffness'. This observation was originally made, by our group, in frog intact muscle fibres and has been confirmed more recently, by us, in mammalian intact fibres. Following stimulation, fibre stiffness starts to increase during the latent period well before crossbridge force generation and it is present throughout the whole contraction in both single twitches and tetani. Static stiffness is dependent on sarcomere length in a different way from crossbridge force and is independent of stretching amplitude and velocity. Static stiffness follows a time course which is distinct from that of active force and very similar to the myoplasmic calcium concentration time course. We therefore hypothesize that static stiffness is due to a calcium-dependent stiffening of a non-crossbridge sarcomere structure, such as the titin filament. According to this hypothesis, titin, in addition to its well-recognized role in determining the muscle passive tension, could have a role during muscle activity. PMID:26792325

  1. Effect of Different Phases of Menstrual Cycle on Reflection Index, Stiffness index and Pulse wave velocity in Healthy subjects

    PubMed Central

    TA, Sandhya

    2014-01-01

    Introduction: Arterial compliance will result in stabilizing the fluctuations in arterial pressure and blood flow. So arterial stiffness can be a good indicator for monitoring the cardiovascular system. Arterial stiffness can be measured using indices like reflection index (RI), stiffness index (SI) and Brachial Finger Pulse Wave Velocity (BFPWV). Objectives: Aim of our study was to evaluate the changes in RI, SI and BFPWV during different phases of the menstrual cycle and to correlate RI with SI in healthy female subjects between the age group of 18-30 years from Bangalore, India. Materials and Methods: Basal recordings of RI and SI were determined by Photo Pulse Plethysmography (PPG) picked up from the fingertip using BIOPAC system and BFPWV was obtained using Doppler. Recordings were obtained at three different time points during the menstrual cycle. Analysis was done using repeated measures ANOVA with Bonferroni correction. Result: There was a significant decrease in above parameters p <0.05 during the mid-cycle. Correlation between RI and SI was also significant p<0.05. Conclusion: These findings suggests that the menstrual cycle affects the arterial stiffness and one of the factor is oestrogen. Hence, women are less prone to the incidence of cardiovascular diseases before menopause. Screening for arterial stiffness in a general population, using these indices is valid, economical and reliable. PMID:25386420

  2. Arterial stiffness in adolescents and young adults with and without type 1 diabetes: the SEARCH CVD study

    PubMed Central

    Shah, Amy S.; Wadwa, R. Paul; Dabelea, Dana; Hamman, Richard F.; DAgostino, Ralph; Marcovina, Santica; Daniels, Stephen R.; Dolan, Lawrence M.; Fino, Nora F.; Urbina, Elaine M.

    2016-01-01

    Background Arterial stiffness is a useful parameter to predict future cardiovascular disease. Objective We sought to compare arterial stiffness in adolescents and young adults with and without type 1 diabetes (T1D) and explore the risk factors associated with the differences observed. Subjects and methods Carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity (PWV), augmentation index (AI75), and brachial distensibility (BrachD) were measured in 402 adolescents and young adults with T1D (age 18.8 3.3 yr, T1D duration 9.8 3.8 yr) and 206 non-diabetic controls that were frequency-matched by age, sex, and race/ethnicity in a cross-sectional study. General linear models were used to explore variables associated with an increase in arterial stiffness after adjustment for demographic and metabolic covariates. Results T1D status was associated with a higher PWV (5.9 0.05 vs. 5.7 0.1 m/s), AI75 (1.3 0.6 vs. ?1.9 0.7%), and lower BrachD (6.2 0.1 vs. 6.5 0.1%?/mmHg), all p < 0.05. In multivariate models, age, sex, race, adiposity, blood pressure, lipids, and the presence of microalbuminuria were found to be independent correlates of increased arterial stiffness. After adjustment for these risk factors, T1D status was still significantly associated with arterial stiffness (p < 0.05). Conclusions Peripheral and central subclinical vascular changes are present in adolescents and young adults with T1D compared to controls. Increased cardiovascular risk factors alone do not explain the observed differences in arterial stiffness among cases and controls. Identifying other risk factors associated with increased arterial stiffness in youth with T1D is critical to prevent future vascular complications. PMID:25912292

  3. Tongue Stiffness is Lower in Patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea during Wakefulness Compared with Matched Control Subjects

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Elizabeth C.; Cheng, Shaokoon; McKenzie, David K.; Butler, Jane E.; Gandevia, Simon C.; Bilston, Lynne E.

    2015-01-01

    Study Objectives: This study aimed to determine whether tongue stiffness (shear modulus) in patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is different for controls matched for age, sex, and body mass index (BMI), and to investigate the effect of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) on stiffness. Design: Controlled experimental study. Setting: Medical research institute. Participants: Patients with OSA and age-, sex-, and BMI-matched healthy controls. Measurements: Magnetic resonance elastography was performed in nine patients with OSA (apnea-hypopnea index (AHI) > 15 events/h) and seven controls (AHI < 10 events/h) matched for age, sex, and BMI. Six of these OSA subjects were also scanned while 10 cmH2O CPAP was applied. Mean isotropic shear modulus and anisotropic shear moduli parallel and perpendicular to the muscle fascicles in the tongue were calculated. Results: Tongue shear modulus in patients with OSA was lower than that in matched controls (2.68 0.35 (mean standard deviation) kPa versus 2.98 0.44 kPa, P < 0.001). Shear modulus decreased with increasing AHI (R = ?0.496, P = 0.043), but not age, BMI, or percentage tongue fat. Anisotropic analysis revealed that reduction in stiffness was greatest parallel to the muscle fibers. CPAP had no significant effect on tongue shear modulus. Conclusions: In awake subjects with obstructive sleep apnea, the tongue is less stiff than in similar healthy subjects and this difference occurs in the muscle fiber direction. CPAP did not significantly reduce tongue stiffness. Thus, any change in neural drive to genioglossus during wakefulness is insufficient to restore normal tongue stiffness. Citation: Brown EC, Cheng S, McKenzie DK, Butler JE, Gandevia SC, Bilston LE. Tongue stiffness is lower in patients with obstructive sleep apnea during wakefulness compared with matched control subjects. SLEEP 2015;38(4):537544. PMID:25409103

  4. Arterial stiffness and blood flow adaptations following eight weeks of resistance exercise training in young and older women.

    PubMed

    Rossow, Lindy M; Fahs, Christopher A; Thiebaud, Robert S; Loenneke, Jeremy P; Kim, Daeyeol; Mouser, James G; Shore, Erin A; Beck, Travis W; Bemben, Debra A; Bemben, Michael G

    2014-05-01

    Resistance training is recommended for all adults of both sexes. The arterial stiffness and limb blood flow responses to resistance training in young and older women have not been well-studied. The purpose of this study was to examine arterial stiffness and blood flow adaptations to high-intensity resistance exercise training in young and older women. Young (aged 18-25) and older (aged 50-64) women performed full-body high-intensity resistance exercise three times per week for eight weeks. The following measurements were performed twice prior to training and once following training: carotid to femoral and femoral to tibialis posterior pulse wave velocity (PWV), blood pressure, heart rate, resting forearm blood flow and forearm reactive hyperemia. Data was analyzed by ANOVAs with alpha set at 0.05. Correlations were also examined between changes in arterial stiffness and baseline arterial stiffness values. Older subjects had higher carotid-femoral PWV than younger subjects. No significant effects were found for femoral-tibialis posterior PWV or for resting forearm blood flow. Changes in carotid-femoral and femoral-tibialis posterior PWV correlated significantly with their respective baseline values. Older subjects increased peak forearm blood flow while young subjects showed no change. Total hyperemia increased significantly in both groups. In conclusion, in both young and older women, eight weeks of high-intensity resistance training appeared to improve microvascular forearm function while not changing carotid-femoral or femoral-tibialis posterior arterial stiffness. However, a large degree of individual variation was found and arterial stiffness adaptations appeared positively related to the initial stiffness values. PMID:24566193

  5. Effects of non-uniform stiffness on the swimming performance of a passively-flexing, fish-like foil model.

    PubMed

    Lucas, Kelsey N; Thornycroft, Patrick J M; Gemmell, Brad J; Colin, Sean P; Costello, John H; Lauder, George V

    2015-10-01

    Simple mechanical models emulating fish have been used recently to enable targeted study of individual factors contributing to swimming locomotion without the confounding complexity of the whole fish body. Yet, unlike these uniform models, the fish body is notable for its non-uniform material properties. In particular, flexural stiffness decreases along the fish's anterior-posterior axis. To identify the role of non-uniform bending stiffness during fish-like propulsion, we studied four foil model configurations made by adhering layers of plastic sheets to produce discrete regions of high (5.5נ10(-5) Nm(2)) and low (1.9נ10(-5) Nm(2)) flexural stiffness of biologically-relevant magnitudes. This resulted in two uniform control foils and two foils with anterior regions of high stiffness and posterior regions of low stiffness. With a mechanical flapping foil controller, we measured forces and torques in three directions and quantified swimming performance under both heaving (no pitch) and constant 0 angle of attack programs. Foils self-propelled at Reynolds number 21 000-115 000 and Strouhal number ?0.20-0.25, values characteristic of fish locomotion. Although previous models have emphasized uniform distributions and heaving motions, the combination of non-uniform stiffness distributions and 0 angle of attack pitching program was better able to reproduce the kinematics of freely-swimming fish. This combination was likewise crucial in maximizing swimming performance and resulted in high self-propelled speeds at low costs of transport and large thrust coefficients at relatively high efficiency. Because these metrics were not all maximized together, selection of the 'best' stiffness distribution will depend on actuation constraints and performance goals. These improved models enable more detailed, accurate analyses of fish-like swimming. PMID:26447541

  6. Cytoskeletal prestress regulates nuclear shape and stiffness in cardiac myocytes

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Hyungsuk; Adams, William J; Alford, Patrick W; McCain, Megan L; Feinberg, Adam W; Sheeny, Sean P; Goss, Josue A

    2015-01-01

    Mechanical stresses on the myocyte nucleus have been associated with several diseases and potentially transduce mechanical stimuli into cellular responses. Although a number of physical links between the nuclear envelope and cytoplasmic filaments have been identified, previous studies have focused on the mechanical properties of individual components of the nucleus, such as the nuclear envelope and lamin network. The mechanical interaction between the cytoskeleton and chromatin on nuclear deformability remains elusive. Here, we investigated how cytoskeletal and chromatin structures influence nuclear mechanics in cardiac myocytes. Rapid decondensation of chromatin and rupture of the nuclear membrane caused a sudden expansion of DNA, a consequence of prestress exerted on the nucleus. To characterize the prestress exerted on the nucleus, we measured the shape and the stiffness of isolated nuclei and nuclei in living myocytes during disruption of cytoskeletal, myofibrillar, and chromatin structure. We found that the nucleus in myocytes is subject to both tensional and compressional prestress and its deformability is determined by a balance of those opposing forces. By developing a computational model of the prestressed nucleus, we showed that cytoskeletal and chromatin prestresses create vulnerability in the nuclear envelope. Our studies suggest the cytoskeletal–nuclear–chromatin interconnectivity may play an important role in mechanics of myocyte contraction and in the development of laminopathies by lamin mutations. PMID:25908635

  7. Cytoskeletal prestress regulates nuclear shape and stiffness in cardiac myocytes.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyungsuk; Adams, William J; Alford, Patrick W; McCain, Megan L; Feinberg, Adam W; Sheehy, Sean P; Goss, Josue A; Parker, Kevin Kit

    2015-11-01

    Mechanical stresses on the myocyte nucleus have been associated with several diseases and potentially transduce mechanical stimuli into cellular responses. Although a number of physical links between the nuclear envelope and cytoplasmic filaments have been identified, previous studies have focused on the mechanical properties of individual components of the nucleus, such as the nuclear envelope and lamin network. The mechanical interaction between the cytoskeleton and chromatin on nuclear deformability remains elusive. Here, we investigated how cytoskeletal and chromatin structures influence nuclear mechanics in cardiac myocytes. Rapid decondensation of chromatin and rupture of the nuclear membrane caused a sudden expansion of DNA, a consequence of prestress exerted on the nucleus. To characterize the prestress exerted on the nucleus, we measured the shape and the stiffness of isolated nuclei and nuclei in living myocytes during disruption of cytoskeletal, myofibrillar, and chromatin structure. We found that the nucleus in myocytes is subject to both tensional and compressional prestress and its deformability is determined by a balance of those opposing forces. By developing a computational model of the prestressed nucleus, we showed that cytoskeletal and chroma