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Sample records for abundant natural polymers

  1. Chain packing in glassy polymers by natural-abundance 13C-13C spin diffusion using 2D centerband-only detection of exchange.

    PubMed

    Singh, Manmilan; Schaefer, Jacob

    2011-03-01

    The proximities of specific subgroups of nearest-neighbor chains in glassy polymers are revealed by distance-dependent (13)C-(13)C dipolar couplings and spin diffusion. The measurement of such proximities is practical even with natural-abundance levels of (13)C using a 2D version of centerband-only detection of exchange (CODEX). Two-dimensional CODEX is a relaxation-compensated experiment that avoids the problems associated with variations in T(1)(C)'s due to dynamic site heterogeneity in the glass. Isotropic chemical shifts are encoded in the t(1) preparation times before and after mixing, and variations in T(2)'s are compensated by an S(0) reference (no mixing). Data acquisition involves acquisition of an S(0) reference signal on alternate scans, and the active control of power amplifiers, to achieve stability and accuracy over long accumulation times. The model system to calibrate spin diffusion is the polymer itself. For a mixing time of 200 ms, only (13)C-(13)C pairs separated by one or two bonds (2.5 Å) show cross peaks, which therefore identify reference intrachain proximities. For a mixing time of 1200 ms, 5 Å interchain proximities appear. The resulting cross peaks are used in a simple and direct way to compare nonrandom chain packing for two commercial polycarbonates with decidedly different mechanical properties.

  2. Helium isotopic abundance variation in nature

    SciTech Connect

    Holden, N.E.

    1993-08-01

    The isotopic abundance of helium in nature has been reviewed. This atomic weight value is based on the value of helium in the atmosphere, which is invariant around the world and up to a distance of 100,000 feet. Helium does vary in natural gas, volcanic rocks and gases, ocean floor sediments, waters of various types and in radioactive minerals and ores due to {alpha} particle decay of radioactive nuclides.

  3. Will Abundant Natural Gas Solve Climate Change?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McJeon, H. C.; Edmonds, J.; Bauer, N.; Leon, C.; Fisher, B.; Flannery, B.; Hilaire, J.; Krey, V.; Marangoni, G.; Mi, R.; Riahi, K.; Rogner, H.; Tavoni, M.

    2015-12-01

    The rapid deployment of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling technologies enabled the production of previously uneconomic shale gas resources in North America. Global deployment of these advanced gas production technologies could bring large influx of economically competitive unconventional gas resources to the energy system. It has been hoped that abundant natural gas substituting for coal could reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, which in turn could reduce climate forcing. Other researchers countered that the non-CO2 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with shale gas production make its lifecycle emissions higher than those of coal. In this study, we employ five state-of-the-art integrated assessment models (IAMs) of energy-economy-climate systems to assess the full impact of abundant gas on climate change. The models show large additional natural gas consumption up to +170% by 2050. The impact on CO2 emissions, however, is found to be much smaller (from -2% to +11%), and a majority of the models reported a small increase in climate forcing (from -0.3% to +7%) associated with the increased use of abundant gas. Our results show that while globally abundant gas may substantially change the future energy market equilibrium, it will not significantly mitigate climate change on its own in the absence of climate policies.

  4. Growing Hyperbranched Polymers Using Natural Sunlight

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Jun-Jie; Sun, Jiao-Tong; You, Ye-Zi; Wu, De-Cheng; Hong, Chun-Yan

    2013-01-01

    In nature, a sapling can grow into a big tree under irradiation of sunlight. In chemistry, a similar concept that a small molecule only exposing to sunlight grows into a hyperbranched macromolecule has not been realized by now. The achievement of the concept will be fascinating and valuable for polymer synthesis wherein sunlight is inexpensive, abundant, renewable, and nonpolluting. Herein, we report a new strategy in which small monomers can directly grow into big hyperbranched macromolecule under irradiation of sunlight without any catalyst. PMID:24100948

  5. Electron-beam distillation of natural polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ponomarev, A. V.; Makarov, I. E.; Ershov, B. G.

    2014-01-01

    Pyrolysis of cellulose, lignin, and chitin may be upgraded by the use of an electron-beam irradiation. The radiation-thermal destruction mode does more probable production of liquid low-molecular-weight products instead of solid pyrolitic oligomers. Furans, methoxyphenols, and pyridines are dominant products of high-temperature radiolysis of cellulose, lignin, and chitin, respectively. The mechanism of chain destruction of natural polymers is considered.

  6. Chlorine-36 abundance in natural and synthetic perchlorate

    SciTech Connect

    Heikoop, Jeffrey M; Dale, M; Sturchio, Neil C; Caffee, M; Belosa, A D; Heraty, Jr., L J; Bohike, J K; Hatzinger, P B; Jackson, W A; Gu, B

    2009-01-01

    Perchlorate (ClO{sub 4}{sup -}) is ubiquitous in the environment. It occurs naturally as a product of atmospheric photochemical reactions, and is synthesized for military, aerospace, and industrial applications. Nitrate-enriched soils of the Atacama Desert (Chile) contain high concentrations of natural ClO{sub 4}{sup -}; nitrate produced from these soils has been exported worldwide since the mid-1800's for use in agriculture. The widespread introduction of synthetic and agricultural ClO{sub 4}{sup -} into the environment has complicated attempts to understand the geochemical cycle of ClO{sub 4}{sup -}. Natural ClO{sub 4}{sup -} samples from the southwestern United States have relatively high {sup 36}Cl abundances ({sup 36}Cl/Cl = 3,100 x 10{sup -15} to 28,800 x 10{sup -15}), compared with samples of synthetic ({sup 36}Cl/Cl = 0.0 x 10{sup -15} to 40 x 10{sup -15}) and Atacama Desert ({sup 36}Cl/Cl = 0.9 x 10{sup -15} to 590 x 10{sup -15}) ClO{sub 4}{sup -}. These data give a lower limit for the initial {sup 36}Cl abundance of natural ClO{sub 4}{sup -} and provide temporal and other constraints on its geochemical cycle.

  7. Paper Thermoelectrics: Merging Nanotechnology with Naturally Abundant Fibrous Material.

    PubMed

    Sun, Chengjun; Goharpey, Amir Hossein; Rai, Ayush; Zhang, Teng; Ko, Dong-Kyun

    2016-08-31

    The development of paper-based sensors, antennas, and energy-harvesting devices can transform the way electronic devices are manufactured and used. Herein we describe an approach to fabricate paper thermoelectric generators for the first time by directly impregnating naturally abundant cellulose materials with p- or n-type colloidal semiconductor quantum dots. We investigate Seebeck coefficients and electrical conductivities as a function of temperature between 300 and 400 K as well as in-plane thermal conductivities using Angstrom's method. We further demonstrate equipment-free fabrication of flexible thermoelectric modules using p- and n-type paper strips. Leveraged by paper's inherently low thermal conductivity and high flexibility, these paper modules have the potential to efficiently utilize heat available in natural and man-made environments by maximizing the thermal contact to heat sources of arbitrary geometry. PMID:27505304

  8. Paper Thermoelectrics: Merging Nanotechnology with Naturally Abundant Fibrous Material.

    PubMed

    Sun, Chengjun; Goharpey, Amir Hossein; Rai, Ayush; Zhang, Teng; Ko, Dong-Kyun

    2016-08-31

    The development of paper-based sensors, antennas, and energy-harvesting devices can transform the way electronic devices are manufactured and used. Herein we describe an approach to fabricate paper thermoelectric generators for the first time by directly impregnating naturally abundant cellulose materials with p- or n-type colloidal semiconductor quantum dots. We investigate Seebeck coefficients and electrical conductivities as a function of temperature between 300 and 400 K as well as in-plane thermal conductivities using Angstrom's method. We further demonstrate equipment-free fabrication of flexible thermoelectric modules using p- and n-type paper strips. Leveraged by paper's inherently low thermal conductivity and high flexibility, these paper modules have the potential to efficiently utilize heat available in natural and man-made environments by maximizing the thermal contact to heat sources of arbitrary geometry.

  9. Preservation of bacteria in natural polymers.

    PubMed

    Krumnow, April A; Sorokulova, Iryna B; Olsen, Eric; Globa, Ludmila; Barbaree, James M; Vodyanoy, Vitaly J

    2009-08-01

    A new inexpensive and simple method for preserving microorganisms has been developed. Natural polymers of acacia gum and pullulan were used to preserve model bacteria Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis via immobilization and storage under various conditions. Formulation of E. coli and B. subtilis in acacia gum significantly increased the viability of both cultures during desiccation at 40 degrees C as well as during the storage at various temperatures and relative humidity. In the ranges of temperatures and humidity used in experiments, the high humidity affected the viability of E. coli more than high temperature. Thermodynamic parameters for E. coli thermal degradation were used for quantification of results and characterization of the preservation process. Viability of B. subtilis in acacia gum polymer was not significantly changed during the storage in the temperature and humidity experiments. The number of viable B. subtilis recovered after storage in pullulan, and in PBS under various humidity conditions was 1-2 logs less in comparison with the number of cells before storage. It was found that acacia gum provides better protection than pullulan for both bacteria during the preservation process.

  10. Natural polymers for the microencapsulation of cells

    PubMed Central

    Gasperini, Luca; Mano, João F.; Reis, Rui L.

    2014-01-01

    The encapsulation of living mammalian cells within a semi-permeable hydrogel matrix is an attractive procedure for many biomedical and biotechnological applications, such as xenotransplantation, maintenance of stem cell phenotype and bioprinting of three-dimensional scaffolds for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. In this review, we focus on naturally derived polymers that can form hydrogels under mild conditions and that are thus capable of entrapping cells within controlled volumes. Our emphasis will be on polysaccharides and proteins, including agarose, alginate, carrageenan, chitosan, gellan gum, hyaluronic acid, collagen, elastin, gelatin, fibrin and silk fibroin. We also discuss the technologies commonly employed to encapsulate cells in these hydrogels, with particular attention on microencapsulation. PMID:25232055

  11. Organosiloxane-grafted natural polymer coatings

    DOEpatents

    Sugama, Toshifumi

    1998-01-01

    A new family of polysaccharide graft polymers are provided as corrosion resistant coatings having antimicrobial properties which are useful on light metals such as aluminum, magnesium, zinc, steel and their alloys. Methods of making the polysaccharide graft polymers are also included. The methods of making the polysaccharide graft polymers involve reacting a polysaccharide source with an antimicrobial agent under conditions of hydrolysis-condensation.

  12. Organosiloxane-grafted natural polymer coatings

    DOEpatents

    Sugama, Toshifumi

    1998-12-01

    A new family of polysaccharide graft polymers are provided as corrosion resistant coatings having antimicrobial properties which are useful on light metals such as aluminum, magnesium, zinc, steel and their alloys. Methods of making the polysaccharide graft polymers are also included. The methods of making the polysaccharide graft polymers involve reacting a polysaccharide source with an antimicrobial agent under conditions of hydrolysis-condensation. 17 figs.

  13. Natural-abundance 17O NMR of monosaccharides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gerothanassis, Ioannis P.; Lauterwein, Jürgen; Sheppard, Norman

    Natural-abundance "high-resolution" 17O NMR spectra of D-glucose, D-mannose, D-galactose, and some methoxy derivatives of D-glucose were recorded in aqueous solution. The sensitivity and spectral resolution was improved by optimizing the accumulation and manipulation of data. The water solvent peak was suppressed through use of 17O-depleted water or displaced by addition of paramagnetic shift reagents. With Dy 3+ the 17O NMR spectrum of D-glucose remained unaltered; however, the water peak was shifted outside the carbohydrate spectral region. The 17O NMR resonances were assigned from earlier data for some specifically 17O-enriched monosaccharide derivatives. The anomeric hydroxyl resonances could also be located because of their exchange with the 17O-depleted water. Although the chemical shifts of the monosacharides generally parallel the sequence of chemical shifts for simple primary and secondary alcohols and substituted ethers, several exceptions were found and discussed in terms of steric and electrostatic repulsive forces between oxygens.

  14. An Epistemology on the Nature of Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Laridjani, Mortéza; Leboucher, Pierre

    2014-01-01

    Liquids have neither a periodic structure nor the completely random character of gases therefore the detailed study of their x-ray scattering diagram encounters many difficulties. The idea of periodic regularity in molecules of liquid polymers has been an attractive proposition for the simple interpretation of liquid polymer x-ray diagrams. The categorisation of polymer substances as being between a crystal phase with a perfect order and an amorphous disordered state is an over simplification of the complex reality. For obtaining structural information, during the early stages of the application of x-ray diffraction, a near crystalline model of the molecular arrangements in liquids was utilised. However, the results from these investigations led to just an approximation of the crystalline state. Our studies have analysed the real image of Fourier space of liquid polymers, for the first time, using anomalous diffractometry. The findings show the precise atomic structure of liquid polymers when transformed, by cooling, to solid polymers. We demonstrate that there is an intermediate ordered structure, characterised by the real full image of Fourier space. This prominent state of matter, an intermediate ordered structure, is defined by a regular unit cell with a five-fold symmetry. These structural atomic studies contribute to a more detailed understanding of the properties of polymers than the traditional studies of the degree of crystallinity. PMID:25329440

  15. FDA-Approved Natural Polymers for Fast Dissolving Tablets

    PubMed Central

    Alam, Md Tausif; Parvez, Nayyar; Sharma, Pramod Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Oral route is the most preferred route for administration of different drugs because it is regarded as safest, most convenient, and economical route. Fast disintegrating tablets are very popular nowadays as they get dissolved or facilely disintegrated in mouth within few seconds of administration without the need of water. The disadvantages of conventional dosage form, especially dysphagia (arduousness in swallowing), in pediatric and geriatric patients have been overcome by fast dissolving tablets. Natural materials have advantages over synthetic ones since they are chemically inert, non-toxic, less expensive, biodegradable and widely available. Natural polymers like locust bean gum, banana powder, mango peel pectin, Mangifera indica gum, and Hibiscus rosa-sinenses mucilage ameliorate the properties of tablet and utilized as binder, diluent, and superdisintegrants increase the solubility of poorly water soluble drug, decrease the disintegration time, and provide nutritional supplement. Natural polymers are obtained from the natural origin and they are cost efficacious, nontoxic, biodegradable, eco-friendly, devoid of any side effect, renewable, and provide nutritional supplement. It is proved from the studies that natural polymers are more safe and efficacious than the synthetic polymers. The aim of the present article is to study the FDA-approved natural polymers utilized in fast dissolving tablets. PMID:26556207

  16. Natural and Synthetic Polymers as Inhibitors of Drug Efflux Pumps

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    Inhibition of efflux pumps is an emerging approach in cancer therapy and drug delivery. Since it has been discovered that polymeric pharmaceutical excipients such as Tweens® or Pluronics® can inhibit efflux pumps, various other polymers have been investigated regarding their potential efflux pump inhibitory activity. Among them are polysaccharides, polyethylene glycols and derivatives, amphiphilic block copolymers, dendrimers and thiolated polymers. In the current review article, natural and synthetic polymers that are capable of inhibiting efflux pumps as well as their application in cancer therapy and drug delivery are discussed. PMID:17896100

  17. Nature's Mechanisms for Tough, Self-healing Polymers and Polymer Adhesives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansma, Paul

    2007-03-01

    Spider silk^2 and the natural polymer adhesives in abalone shells^3 and bone^4,5 can give us insights into nature's mechanisms for tough, self-healing polymers and polymer adhesives. The natural polymer adhesives in biomaterials have been optimized by evolution. An optimized polymer adhesive has five characteristics. 1) It holds together the strong elements of the composite. 2) It yields just before the strong elements would otherwise break. 3) It dissipates large amounts of energy as it yields. 4) It self heals after it yields. 5) It takes just a few percent by weight. Both natural polymer adhesives and silk rely on sacrificial bonds and hidden length for toughness and self-healing.^6 A relatively large energy, of order 100eV, is required to stretch a polymer molecule after a weak bond, a sacrificial bond, breaks and liberates hidden length, which was previously hidden, typically in a loop or folded domain, from whatever was stretching the polymer. The bond is called sacrificial if it breaks at forces well below the forces that could otherwise break the polymer backbone, typically greater than 1nN. In many biological cases, the breaking of sacrificial bonds has been found to be reversible, thereby also providing a ``self-healing'' property to the material.^2-4 Individual polymer adhesive molecules based on sacrificial bonds and hidden length can supply forces of order 300pN over distances of 100s of nanometers. Model calculations show that a few percent by weight of adhesives based on these principles could be optimized adhesives for high performance composite materials including nanotube and graphene sheet composites. ^2N. Becker, E. Oroudjev, S. Mutz et al., Nature Materials 2 (4), 278 (2003). ^3B. L. Smith, T. E. Schaffer, M. Viani et al., Nature 399 (6738), 761 (1999). ^4J. B. Thompson, J. H. Kindt, B. Drake et al., Nature 414 (6865), 773 (2001). ^5G. E. Fantner, T. Hassenkam, J. H. Kindt et al., Nature Materials 4, 612 (2005). ^6G. E. Fantner, E. Oroudjev, G

  18. Natural Abundance 14C Content of Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP) from Three Marine Algae

    PubMed Central

    Namikoshi, Michio; Fujiwara, Takeshi; Nishikawa, Teruaki; Ukai, Kazuyo

    2006-01-01

    Analysis of the natural abundance 14C content of dibutyl phthalate (DBP) from two edible brown algae, Undaria pinnatifida and Laminaria japonica, and a green alga, Ulva sp., revealed that the DBP was naturally produced. The natural abundance 14C content of di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) obtained from the same algae was about 50–80% of the standard sample and the 14C content of the petrochemical (industrial) products of DBP and DEHP were below the detection limit.

  19. Quercetin as natural stabilizing agent for bio-polymer

    SciTech Connect

    Morici, Elisabetta; Arrigo, Rossella; Dintcheva, Nadka Tzankova

    2014-05-15

    The introduction of antioxidants in polymers is the main way to prevent or delay the degradation process. In particular natural antioxidants receive attention in the food industry also because of their presumed safety. In this work bio-polymers, i.e. a commercial starch-based polymer (Mater-Bi®) and a bio-polyester (PLA), and a bio-polyether (PEO) were additivated with quercetin, a natural flavonoid antioxidants, in order to formulate bio-based films for ecosustainable packaging and outdoor applications. The photo-oxidation behavior of unstabilized and quercetin stabilized films was analyzed and compared with the behavior of films additivated with a commercial synthetic light stabilizer. The quercetin is able to slow down the photo-degradation rate of all bio-polymeric films investigated in similar way to the synthetic stabilizer.

  20. Quercetin as natural stabilizing agent for bio-polymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morici, Elisabetta; Arrigo, Rossella; Dintcheva, Nadka Tzankova

    2014-05-01

    The introduction of antioxidants in polymers is the main way to prevent or delay the degradation process. In particular natural antioxidants receive attention in the food industry also because of their presumed safety. In this work bio-polymers, i.e. a commercial starch-based polymer (Mater-Bi®) and a bio-polyester (PLA), and a bio-polyether (PEO) were additivated with quercetin, a natural flavonoid antioxidants, in order to formulate bio-based films for ecosustainable packaging and outdoor applications. The photo-oxidation behavior of unstabilized and quercetin stabilized films was analyzed and compared with the behavior of films additivated with a commercial synthetic light stabilizer. The quercetin is able to slow down the photo-degradation rate of all bio-polymeric films investigated in similar way to the synthetic stabilizer.

  1. Natural variability in abundance of prevalent soybean proteins.

    PubMed

    Natarajan, Savithiry S

    2010-12-01

    Soybean is an inexpensive source of protein for humans and animals. Genetic modifications (GMO) to soybean have become inevitable on two fronts, both quality and yield will need to improve to meet increasing global demand. To ensure the safety of the crop for consumers it is important to determine the natural variation in seed protein constituents as well as any unintended changes that may occur in the GMO as a result of genetic modification. Understanding the natural variation of seed proteins in wild and cultivated soybeans that have been used in conventional soybean breeding programs is critical for determining unintended protein expression in GMO soybeans. In recent years, proteomic technologies have been used as an effective analytical tool for examining modifications of protein profiles. We have standardized and applied these technologies to determine and quantify the spectrum of proteins present in soybean seed. We used two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE), matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS), and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS) for the separation, quantification, and identification of different classes of soybean seed proteins. We have observed significant variations in different classes of proteins, including storage, allergen and anti-nutritional protein profiles, between non-GMO cultivated and wild soybean varieties. This information is useful for scientists and regulatory agencies to determine whether the unintended expression of proteins found in transgenic soybean is within the range of natural variation. PMID:20709130

  2. Natural variability in abundance of prevalent soybean proteins.

    PubMed

    Natarajan, Savithiry S

    2010-12-01

    Soybean is an inexpensive source of protein for humans and animals. Genetic modifications (GMO) to soybean have become inevitable on two fronts, both quality and yield will need to improve to meet increasing global demand. To ensure the safety of the crop for consumers it is important to determine the natural variation in seed protein constituents as well as any unintended changes that may occur in the GMO as a result of genetic modification. Understanding the natural variation of seed proteins in wild and cultivated soybeans that have been used in conventional soybean breeding programs is critical for determining unintended protein expression in GMO soybeans. In recent years, proteomic technologies have been used as an effective analytical tool for examining modifications of protein profiles. We have standardized and applied these technologies to determine and quantify the spectrum of proteins present in soybean seed. We used two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE), matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS), and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LC-MS) for the separation, quantification, and identification of different classes of soybean seed proteins. We have observed significant variations in different classes of proteins, including storage, allergen and anti-nutritional protein profiles, between non-GMO cultivated and wild soybean varieties. This information is useful for scientists and regulatory agencies to determine whether the unintended expression of proteins found in transgenic soybean is within the range of natural variation.

  3. Bioresorbable ureteral stents from natural origin polymers.

    PubMed

    Barros, Alexandre A; Rita, Ana; Duarte, C; Pires, Ricardo A; Sampaio-Marques, Belém; Ludovico, Paula; Lima, Estevão; Mano, João F; Reis, Rui L

    2015-04-01

    In this work, stents were produced from natural origin polysaccharides. Alginate, gellan gum, and a blend of these with gelatin were used to produce hollow tube (stents) following a combination of templated gelation and critical point carbon dioxide drying. Morphological analysis of the surface of the stents was carried out by scanning electron microscopy. Indwelling time, encrustation, and stability of the stents in artificial urine solution was carried out up to 60 days of immersion. In vitro studies carried out with simulated urine demonstrated that the tubes present a high fluid uptake ability, about 1000%. Despite this, the materials are able to maintain their shape and do not present an extensive swelling behavior. The bioresorption profile was observed to be highly dependent on the composition of the stent and it can be tuned. Complete dissolution of the materials may occur between 14 and 60 days. Additionally, no encrustation was observed within the tested timeframe. The ability to resist bacterial adherence was evaluated with Gram-positive Staphylococcus aureus and two Gram-negatives Escherichia coli DH5 alpha and Klebsiella oxytoca. For K. oxytoca, no differences were observed in comparison with a commercial stent (Biosoft(®) duo, Porges), although, for S. aureus all tested compositions had a higher inhibition of bacterial adhesion compared to the commercial stents. In case of E. coli, the addition of gelatin to the formulations reduced the bacterial adhesion in a highly significant manner compared to the commercial stents. The stents produced by the developed technology fulfill the requirements for ureteral stents and will contribute in the development of biocompatible and bioresorbable urinary stents.

  4. Natural rubber (NR) biosynthesis: perspectives from polymer chemistry

    SciTech Connect

    Barkakaty, Balaka

    2014-01-01

    Natural rubber is an important strategic raw material for manufacturing a wide variety of industrial products. There are at least 2,500 different latex-producing plant species; however, only Hevea brasiliensis (the Brazilian rubber tree) is a commercial source. The chemical structure of natural rubber is cis-1,4-polyisoprene, but the exact structure of the head and end groups remains unknown. Since synthetic cis-1,4-polyisoprenes cannot match the superior properties of natural rubber, understanding the chemistry behind the biosynthetic process is key to finding a possible replacement. T his chapter summarizes our current understandings from the perspective of a polymer scientist by comparing synthetic polyisoprenes to natural rubber. The chapter also highlights biomimetic polymerization, research towards a synthetic match of natural rubber and the role of natural rubber in health care.

  5. Nature-inspired polymer actuators for micro-fluidic mixing.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    den Toonder, Jaap M. J.; Bos, Femke; de Goede, Judith; Anderson, Patrick

    2007-11-01

    One particular micro-fluidics manipulation mechanism ``designed'' by nature is that due to a covering of beating cilia over the external surface of micro-organisms (e.g. Paramecium). A cilium can be viewed as a small hair or flexible rod (in protozoa: typical length 10 microns and diameter 0.1 microns) which is attached to the surface. We have developed polymer micro-actuators, made with standard micro-technology processing, which respond to an applied electrical or magnetic field by changing their shape. The shape and size of the polymer actuators mimics that of cilia occurring in nature. Flow visualization experiments show that the cilia can generate substantial fluid velocities, in the order of 1 mm/s. In addition, using specially designed geometrical configurations of the cilia, very efficient mixing is obtained. Since the artificial cilia can be actively controlled using electrical signals, they have exciting applications in micro-fluidic devices.

  6. Plantation vs. natural forest: Matrix quality determines pollinator abundance in crop fields

    PubMed Central

    Taki, Hisatomo; Yamaura, Yuichi; Okabe, Kimiko; Maeto, Kaoru

    2011-01-01

    In terrestrial ecosystems, ecological processes and patterns within focal patches frequently depend on their matrix. Crop fields (focal patches) are often surrounded by a mosaic of other land-use types (matrix), which may act as habitats for organisms and differ in terms of the immigration activities of organisms to the fields. We examined whether matrix quality affects wild pollinator abundance in crop fields, given that the species (Apis cerana) generally nest in the cavities of natural trees. We examined fields of a pollination-dependent crop surrounded by plantations and natural forests, which comprised the matrix. Our analysis revealed a clear positive effect of the natural forest on the pollinator abundance, but the plantation forest had little effects. These indicate that agricultural patches are influenced by their matrix quality and the resulting crop pollinator abundance, suggesting the importance of matrix management initiatives such as forest restoration surrounding agricultural fields to improve crop production. PMID:22355649

  7. Plantation vs. natural forest: matrix quality determines pollinator abundance in crop fields.

    PubMed

    Taki, Hisatomo; Yamaura, Yuichi; Okabe, Kimiko; Maeto, Kaoru

    2011-01-01

    In terrestrial ecosystems, ecological processes and patterns within focal patches frequently depend on their matrix. Crop fields (focal patches) are often surrounded by a mosaic of other land-use types (matrix), which may act as habitats for organisms and differ in terms of the immigration activities of organisms to the fields. We examined whether matrix quality affects wild pollinator abundance in crop fields, given that the species (Apis cerana) generally nest in the cavities of natural trees. We examined fields of a pollination-dependent crop surrounded by plantations and natural forests, which comprised the matrix. Our analysis revealed a clear positive effect of the natural forest on the pollinator abundance, but the plantation forest had little effects. These indicate that agricultural patches are influenced by their matrix quality and the resulting crop pollinator abundance, suggesting the importance of matrix management initiatives such as forest restoration surrounding agricultural fields to improve crop production.

  8. Development of polymer concrete vaults for natural gas regulator stations

    SciTech Connect

    Fontana, J.J.; Miller, C.A.; Reams, W.; Elling, D.

    1990-08-01

    Vaults for natural gas regulator stations have traditionally been fabricated with steel-reinforced portland cement concrete. Since these vaults are installed below ground level, they are usually coated with a water-proofing material to prevent the ingress of moisture into the vault. In some cases, penetrations for piping that are normally cast into the vault do not line up with the gas lines in the streets. This necessitates off-setting the lines to line up with the penetrations in the vault or breaking out new penetrations which could weaken the structure and/or allow water ingress. By casting the vaults using a new material of construction such as polymer concrete, a longer maintenance free service life is possible because the physical and durability properties of polymer concrete composites are much superior to those of portland cement concrete. The higher strengths of polymer concrete allow the design engineer to reduce the wall, floor, and ceiling thicknesses making the vaults lighter for easier transportation and installation. Penetrations can be cut after casting to match existing street lines, thus making the vault more universal and reducing the number of vaults that are normally in stock. The authors developed a steel-fiber reinforced polymer concrete composite that could be used for regulator vaults. Based on the physical properties of his new composite, vaults were designed to replace the BUG PV-008 and Con Ed GR-6 regulator vaults made of reinforced portland cement concrete. Quarter-scale models of the polymer concrete vaults were tested and the results reaffirmed the reduced wall thickness design. Two sets of vaults, cast by Hardinge Bros., were inspected by representatives of the utilities and BNL (Brookhaven National Laboratory), and were accepted for delivery. 6 refs., 5 figs., 12 tabs.

  9. Studies on natural fiber reinforced polymer matrix composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patel, R. H.; Kapatel, P. M.; Machchhar, A. D.; Kapatel, Y. A.

    2016-05-01

    Natural fiber reinforced composites show increasing importance in day to days applications because of their low cost, lightweight, easy availability, non-toxicity, biodegradability and environment friendly nature. But these fibers are hydrophilic in nature. Thus they have very low reactivity and poor compatibility with polymers. To overcome these limitations chemical modifications of the fibers have been carried out. Therefore, in the present work jute fibers have chemically modified by treating with sodium hydroxide (NaOH) solutions. These treated jute fibers have been used to fabricate jute fiber reinforced epoxy composites. Mechanical properties like tensile strength, flexural strength and impact strength have been found out. Alkali treated composites show better properties compare to untreated composites.

  10. Hyperpolarized NMR of plant and cancer cell extracts at natural abundance.

    PubMed

    Dumez, Jean-Nicolas; Milani, Jonas; Vuichoud, Basile; Bornet, Aurélien; Lalande-Martin, Julie; Tea, Illa; Yon, Maxime; Maucourt, Mickaël; Deborde, Catherine; Moing, Annick; Frydman, Lucio; Bodenhausen, Geoffrey; Jannin, Sami; Giraudeau, Patrick

    2015-09-01

    Natural abundance (13)C NMR spectra of biological extracts are recorded in a single scan provided that the samples are hyperpolarized by dissolution dynamic nuclear polarization combined with cross polarization. Heteronuclear 2D correlation spectra of hyperpolarized breast cancer cell extracts can also be obtained in a single scan. Hyperpolarized NMR of extracts opens many perspectives for metabolomics. PMID:26215673

  11. Supramolecular polymer adhesives: advanced materials inspired by nature.

    PubMed

    Heinzmann, Christian; Weder, Christoph; de Espinosa, Lucas Montero

    2016-01-21

    Due to their dynamic, stimuli-responsive nature, non-covalent interactions represent versatile design elements that can be found in nature in many molecular processes or materials, where adaptive behavior or reversible connectivity is required. Examples include molecular recognition processes, which trigger biological responses or cell-adhesion to surfaces, and a broad range of animal secreted adhesives with environment-dependent properties. Such advanced functionalities have inspired researchers to employ similar design approaches for the development of synthetic polymers with stimuli-responsive properties. The utilization of non-covalent interactions for the design of adhesives with advanced functionalities such as stimuli responsiveness, bonding and debonding on demand capability, surface selectivity or recyclability is a rapidly emerging subset of this field, which is summarized in this review. PMID:26203784

  12. Resistive switching memory based on bioinspired natural solid polymer electrolytes.

    PubMed

    Raeis Hosseini, Niloufar; Lee, Jang-Sik

    2015-01-27

    A solution-processed, chitosan-based resistive-switching memory device is demonstrated with Pt/Ag-doped chitosan/Ag structure. The memory device shows reproducible and reliable bipolar resistive switching characteristics. A memory device based on natural organic material is a promising device toward the next generation of nonvolatile nanoelectronics. The memory device based on chitosan as a natural solid polymer electrolyte can be switched reproducibly between high and low resistance states. In addition, the data retention measurement confirmed the reliability of the chitosan-based nonvolatile memory device. The transparent Ag-embedded chitosan film showed an acceptable and comparable resistive switching behavior on the flexible plastic substrate as well. A cost-effective, environmentally benign memory device using chitosan satisfies the functional requirements of nonvolatile memory operations.

  13. Natural abundance 17O DNP two-dimensional and surface-enhanced NMR spectroscopy

    DOE PAGES

    Perras, Frédéric A.; Kobayashi, Takeshi; Pruski, Marek

    2015-06-22

    Due to its extremely low natural abundance and quadrupolar nature, the 17O nuclide is very rarely used for spectroscopic investigation of solids by NMR without isotope enrichment. Additionally, the applicability of dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP), which leads to sensitivity enhancements of 2 orders of magnitude, to 17O is wrought with challenges due to the lack of spin diffusion and low polarization transfer efficiency from 1H. Here, we demonstrate new DNP-based measurements that extend 17O solid-state NMR beyond its current capabilities. The use of the PRESTO technique instead of conventional 1H–17O cross-polarization greatly improves the sensitivity and enables the facile measurementmore » of undistorted line shapes and two-dimensional 1H–17O HETCOR NMR spectra as well as accurate internuclear distance measurements at natural abundance. This was applied for distinguishing hydrogen-bonded and lone 17O sites on the surface of silica gel; the one-dimensional spectrum of which could not be used to extract such detail. As a result, this greatly enhanced sensitivity has enabled, for the first time, the detection of surface hydroxyl sites on mesoporous silica at natural abundance, thereby extending the concept of DNP surface-enhanced NMR spectroscopy to the 17O nuclide.« less

  14. Natural Genetic Variation Influences Protein Abundances in C. elegans Developmental Signalling Pathways.

    PubMed

    Singh, Kapil Dev; Roschitzki, Bernd; Snoek, L Basten; Grossmann, Jonas; Zheng, Xue; Elvin, Mark; Kamkina, Polina; Schrimpf, Sabine P; Poulin, Gino B; Kammenga, Jan E; Hengartner, Michael O

    2016-01-01

    Complex traits, including common disease-related traits, are affected by many different genes that function in multiple pathways and networks. The apoptosis, MAPK, Notch, and Wnt signalling pathways play important roles in development and disease progression. At the moment we have a poor understanding of how allelic variation affects gene expression in these pathways at the level of translation. Here we report the effect of natural genetic variation on transcript and protein abundance involved in developmental signalling pathways in Caenorhabditis elegans. We used selected reaction monitoring to analyse proteins from the abovementioned four pathways in a set of recombinant inbred lines (RILs) generated from the wild-type strains N2 (Bristol) and CB4856 (Hawaii) to enable quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping. About half of the cases from the 44 genes tested showed a statistically significant change in protein abundance between various strains, most of these were however very weak (below 1.3-fold change). We detected a distant QTL on the left arm of chromosome II that affected protein abundance of the phosphatidylserine receptor protein PSR-1, and two separate QTLs that influenced embryonic and ionizing radiation-induced apoptosis on chromosome IV. Our results demonstrate that natural variation in C. elegans is sufficient to cause significant changes in signalling pathways both at the gene expression (transcript and protein abundance) and phenotypic levels. PMID:26985669

  15. Species richness and relative abundance of birds in natural and anthropogenic fragments of Brazilian Atlantic forest.

    PubMed

    dos Anjos, Luiz

    2004-06-01

    Bird communities were studied in two types of fragmented habitat of Atlantic forest in the State of Paraná, southern Brazil; one consisted of forest fragments that were created as a result of human activities (forest remnants), the other consisted of a set of naturally occurring forest fragments (forest patches). Using quantitative data obtained by the point counts method in 3 forest patches and 3 forest remnants during one year, species richness and relative abundance were compared in those habitats, considering species groups according to their general feeding habits. Insectivores, omnivores, and frugivores presented similar general tendencies in both habitats (decrease of species number with decreasing size and increasing isolation of forest fragment). However, these tendencies were different, when considering the relative abundance data: the trunk insectivores presented the highest value in the smallest patch while the lowest relative abundance was in the smallest remnant. In the naturally fragmented landscape, time permitted that the loss of some species of trunk insectivores be compensated for the increase in abundance of other species. In contrast, the remnants essentially represented newly formed islands that are not yet at equilibrium and where future species losses would make them similar to the patches.

  16. Increased natural mortality at low abundance can generate an Allee effect in a marine fish.

    PubMed

    Kuparinen, Anna; Hutchings, Jeffrey A

    2014-10-01

    Negative density-dependent regulation of population dynamics promotes population growth at low abundance and is therefore vital for recovery following depletion. Inversely, any process that reduces the compensatory density-dependence of population growth can negatively affect recovery. Here, we show that increased adult mortality at low abundance can reverse compensatory population dynamics into its opposite-a demographic Allee effect. Northwest Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) stocks collapsed dramatically in the early 1990s and have since shown little sign of recovery. Many experienced dramatic increases in natural mortality, ostensibly attributable in some populations to increased predation by seals. Our findings show that increased natural mortality of a magnitude observed for overfished cod stocks has been more than sufficient to fundamentally alter the dynamics of density-dependent population regulation. The demographic Allee effect generated by these changes can slow down or even impede the recovery of depleted populations even in the absence of fishing. PMID:26064531

  17. High-resolution NMR of hydrogen in organic solids by DNP enhanced natural abundance deuterium spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Rossini, Aaron J; Schlagnitweit, Judith; Lesage, Anne; Emsley, Lyndon

    2015-10-01

    We demonstrate that high field (9.4 T) dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) at cryogenic (∼100 K) sample temperatures enables the rapid acquisition of natural abundance (1)H-(2)H cross-polarization magic angle spinning (CPMAS) solid-state NMR spectra of organic solids. Spectra were obtained by impregnating substrates with a solution of the stable DNP polarizing agent TEKPol in tetrachloroethane. Tetrachloroethane is a non-solvent for the solids, and the unmodified substrates are then polarized through spin diffusion. High quality natural abundance (2)H CPMAS spectra of histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, glycylglycine and theophylline were acquired in less than 2h, providing direct access to hydrogen chemical shifts and quadrupolar couplings. The spectral resolution of the (2)H solid-state NMR spectra is comparable to that of (1)H spectra obtained with state of the art homonuclear decoupling techniques.

  18. Increased natural mortality at low abundance can generate an Allee effect in a marine fish.

    PubMed

    Kuparinen, Anna; Hutchings, Jeffrey A

    2014-10-01

    Negative density-dependent regulation of population dynamics promotes population growth at low abundance and is therefore vital for recovery following depletion. Inversely, any process that reduces the compensatory density-dependence of population growth can negatively affect recovery. Here, we show that increased adult mortality at low abundance can reverse compensatory population dynamics into its opposite-a demographic Allee effect. Northwest Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) stocks collapsed dramatically in the early 1990s and have since shown little sign of recovery. Many experienced dramatic increases in natural mortality, ostensibly attributable in some populations to increased predation by seals. Our findings show that increased natural mortality of a magnitude observed for overfished cod stocks has been more than sufficient to fundamentally alter the dynamics of density-dependent population regulation. The demographic Allee effect generated by these changes can slow down or even impede the recovery of depleted populations even in the absence of fishing.

  19. High-resolution NMR of hydrogen in organic solids by DNP enhanced natural abundance deuterium spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossini, Aaron J.; Schlagnitweit, Judith; Lesage, Anne; Emsley, Lyndon

    2015-10-01

    We demonstrate that high field (9.4 T) dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) at cryogenic (∼100 K) sample temperatures enables the rapid acquisition of natural abundance 1H-2H cross-polarization magic angle spinning (CPMAS) solid-state NMR spectra of organic solids. Spectra were obtained by impregnating substrates with a solution of the stable DNP polarizing agent TEKPol in tetrachloroethane. Tetrachloroethane is a non-solvent for the solids, and the unmodified substrates are then polarized through spin diffusion. High quality natural abundance 2H CPMAS spectra of histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, glycylglycine and theophylline were acquired in less than 2 h, providing direct access to hydrogen chemical shifts and quadrupolar couplings. The spectral resolution of the 2H solid-state NMR spectra is comparable to that of 1H spectra obtained with state of the art homonuclear decoupling techniques.

  20. Permeability damage to natural fractures caused by fracturing fluid polymers

    SciTech Connect

    Gall, B.L.; Sattler, A.R.; Maloney, D.R.; Raible, C.J.

    1988-04-01

    Formation damage studies using artificially fractured, low-permeability sandstone cores indicate that viscosified fracturing fluids can severely restrict gas flow through these types of narrow fractures. These studies were performed in support of the Department of Energy's Multiwell Experiment (MWX). Extensive geological and production evaluations at the MWX site indicate that the presence of a natural fracture system is largely responsible for unstimulated gas production. The laboratory formation damage studies were designed to examine changes in cracked core permeability to gas caused by fracturing fluid residues introduced into such narrow fractures during fluid leakoff. Polysaccharide polymers caused significant reduction (up to 95%) to gas flow through cracked cores. Polymer fracturing fluid gels used in this study included hydroxypropyl guar, hydroxyethyl cellulose, and xanthan gum. In contrast, polyacrylamide gels caused little or no reduction in gas flow through cracked cores after liquid cleanup. Other components of fracturing fluids (surfactants, breakers, etc.) caused less damage to gas flows. Other factors affecting gas flow through cracked cores were investigated, including the effects of net confining stress and non-Darcy flow parameters. Results are related to some of the problems observed during the stimulation program conducted for the MWX. 24 refs., 4 figs., 7 tabs.

  1. Determination of lithium isotopes at natural abundance levels by atomic absorption spectrometry

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Meier, A.L.

    1982-01-01

    The relationships of the absorption of 6Li and 7Li hollow cathode lamp emissions are used to determine lithium isotopic composition in the natural abundance range of geologic materials. Absorption was found to have a nonlinear dependence upon total lithium concentration and isotopic composition. A method using nonlinear equations to describe the relationship of the absorption of 6Li and 7Li lamp radiation is proposed as a means of calculating isotopic composition that is independent of total lithium concentration.

  2. Natural abundance 2H-ERETIC-NMR authentication of the origin of methyl salicylate.

    PubMed

    Le Grand, Flore; George, Gerard; Akoka, Serge

    2005-06-29

    Methyl salicylate is a compound currently used in the creation of many flavors. It can be obtained by synthesis or from two natural sources: essential oil of wintergreen and essential oil of sweet birch bark. Deuterium site-specific natural isotope abundance (A(i)) determination by NMR spectroscopy with the method of reference ERETIC ((2)H-ERETIC-NMR) has been applied to this compound. A(i) measurements have been performed on 19 samples of methyl salicylate from different origins, natural/synthetic and commercial/extracted. This study demonstrates that appropriate treatment performed on the data allows discrimination between synthetic and natural samples. Moreover, the representation of intramolecular ratios R(6/5) as a function of R(3/2) distinguishes between synthetics, wintergreen oils, and sweet birch bark oils.

  3. Genome-wide Determinants of Proviral Targeting, Clonal Abundance and Expression in Natural HTLV-1 Infection

    PubMed Central

    Melamed, Anat; Laydon, Daniel J.; Gillet, Nicolas A.; Tanaka, Yuetsu; Taylor, Graham P.; Bangham, Charles R. M.

    2013-01-01

    The regulation of proviral latency is a central problem in retrovirology. We postulate that the genomic integration site of human T lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) determines the pattern of expression of the provirus, which in turn determines the abundance and pathogenic potential of infected T cell clones in vivo. We recently developed a high-throughput method for the genome-wide amplification, identification and quantification of proviral integration sites. Here, we used this protocol to test two hypotheses. First, that binding sites for transcription factors and chromatin remodelling factors in the genome flanking the proviral integration site of HTLV-1 are associated with integration targeting, spontaneous proviral expression, and in vivo clonal abundance. Second, that the transcriptional orientation of the HTLV-1 provirus relative to that of the nearest host gene determines spontaneous proviral expression and in vivo clonal abundance. Integration targeting was strongly associated with the presence of a binding site for specific host transcription factors, especially STAT1 and p53. The presence of the chromatin remodelling factors BRG1 and INI1 and certain host transcription factors either upstream or downstream of the provirus was associated respectively with silencing or spontaneous expression of the provirus. Cells expressing HTLV-1 Tax protein were significantly more frequent in clones of low abundance in vivo. We conclude that transcriptional interference and chromatin remodelling are critical determinants of proviral latency in natural HTLV-1 infection. PMID:23555266

  4. Effect of Environmental Factors on Cyanobacterial Abundance and Cyanotoxins Production in Natural and Drinking Water, Bangladesh.

    PubMed

    Affan, Abu; Khomavis, Hisham S; Al-Harbi, Salim Marzoog; Haque, Mahfuzul; Khan, Saleha

    2015-02-01

    Cyanobacterial blooms commonly appear during the summer months in ponds, lakes and reservoirs in Bangladesh. In these areas, fish mortality, odorous water and fish and human skin irritation and eye inflammation have been reported. The influence of physicochemical factors on the occurrence of cyanobacteria and its toxin levels were evaluated in natural and drinking water in Bangladesh. A highly sensitive immunosorbent assay was used to detect microcystins (MCs). Cyanobacteria were found in 22 of 23 samples and the dominant species were Microcystis aeruginosa, followed by Microcystisflosaquae, Anabeana crassa and Aphanizomenon flosaquae. Cyanobacterial abundance varied from 39 to 1315 x 10(3) cells mL(-1) in natural water and 31 to 49 x 10(3) cells mL(-1) in tap water. MC concentrations were 25-82300 pg mL(-1) with the highest value measured in the fish research pond, followed by Ishakha Lake. In tap water, MC concentrations ranged from 30-32 pg mL(-1). The correlation between nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N) concentration and cyanobacterial cell abundance was R2 = 0.62 while that between cyanobacterial abundance and MC concentration was R2 = 0.98. The increased NO3-N from fish feed, organic manure, poultry and dairy farm waste and fertilizer from agricultural land eutrophicated the water bodies and triggered cyanobacterial bloom formation. The increased amount of cyanobacteria produced MCs, subsequently reducing the water quality. PMID:26364354

  5. Effect of Environmental Factors on Cyanobacterial Abundance and Cyanotoxins Production in Natural and Drinking Water, Bangladesh.

    PubMed

    Affan, Abu; Khomavis, Hisham S; Al-Harbi, Salim Marzoog; Haque, Mahfuzul; Khan, Saleha

    2015-02-01

    Cyanobacterial blooms commonly appear during the summer months in ponds, lakes and reservoirs in Bangladesh. In these areas, fish mortality, odorous water and fish and human skin irritation and eye inflammation have been reported. The influence of physicochemical factors on the occurrence of cyanobacteria and its toxin levels were evaluated in natural and drinking water in Bangladesh. A highly sensitive immunosorbent assay was used to detect microcystins (MCs). Cyanobacteria were found in 22 of 23 samples and the dominant species were Microcystis aeruginosa, followed by Microcystisflosaquae, Anabeana crassa and Aphanizomenon flosaquae. Cyanobacterial abundance varied from 39 to 1315 x 10(3) cells mL(-1) in natural water and 31 to 49 x 10(3) cells mL(-1) in tap water. MC concentrations were 25-82300 pg mL(-1) with the highest value measured in the fish research pond, followed by Ishakha Lake. In tap water, MC concentrations ranged from 30-32 pg mL(-1). The correlation between nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N) concentration and cyanobacterial cell abundance was R2 = 0.62 while that between cyanobacterial abundance and MC concentration was R2 = 0.98. The increased NO3-N from fish feed, organic manure, poultry and dairy farm waste and fertilizer from agricultural land eutrophicated the water bodies and triggered cyanobacterial bloom formation. The increased amount of cyanobacteria produced MCs, subsequently reducing the water quality.

  6. Symbiotic nitrogen fixation in an arid ecosystem measured by sup 15 N natural abundance

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, G.V. )

    1990-05-01

    Plants dependent on nitrogen fixation have an {sup 15}N abundance similar to the atmosphere, while non-nitrogen fixing plants usually are enriched in {sup 15}N and are similar to soil nitrogen values. The natural abundance of {sup 15}N in leaf tissues and soils was determined to evaluate symbiotic nitrogen fixation by several legumes and actinorhizal species in the Sevilleta Long-term Ecological Research area in central New Mexico. Comparison of {delta}{sup 15}N values for the legume Prosopis glandulosa (mesquite) to adjacent Atriplex canascens (fourwing saltbush) indicated that P. glandulosa obtained 66% of its nitrogen by fixation. The legume Hoffmanseggia jamesii was found to be utilizing soil nitrogen. The {delta}{sup 15}N values for the actinorhizal plants, Elaeagnus angustifolia and Cercocarpus montanus, while below values for soil nitrogen, did not differ from associated non-fixing plants.

  7. Understanding the Nature of Stellar Chemical Abundance Distributions in Nearby Stellar Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Duane Morris

    Since stars retain signatures of their galactic origins in their chemical compositions, we can exploit the chemical abundance distributions that we observe in stellar systems to put constraints on the nature of their progenitors. In this thesis, I present results from three projects aimed at understanding how high resolution spectroscopic observations of nearby stellar systems might be interpreted. The first project presents one possible explanation for the origin of peculiar abundance distributions observed in ultra-faint dwarf satellites of the Milky Way. The second project explores to what extent the distribution of chemical elements in the stellar halo can be used to trace Galactic accretion history from the birth of the Galaxy to the present day. Finally, a third project focuses on developing an input optimization algorithm for the second project to produce better estimates of halo accretion histories. In conclusion, I propose some other new ways to use statistical models and techniques along with chemical abundance distribution data to uncover galactic histories.

  8. Natural abundances of carbon isotopes in acetate from a coastal marine sediment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blair, N. E.; Martens, C. S.; Des Marais, D. J.

    1987-01-01

    Measurements of the natural abundances of carbon isotopes were made in acetate samples isolated from the anoxic marine sediment of Cape Lookout Bight, North Carolina. The typical value of the total acetate carbon isotope ratio (delta 13C) was -16.1 +/- 0.2 per mil. The methyl and carboxyl groups were determined to be -26.4 +/- 0.3 and -6.0 +/- 0.3 per mil, respectively, for one sample. The isotopic composition of the acetate is thought to have resulted from isotopic discriminations that occurred during the cycling of that molecule. Measurements of this type, which have not been made previously in the natural environment, may provide information about the dominant microbial pathways in anoxic sediments as well as the processes that influence the carbon isotopic composition of biogenic methane from many sources.

  9. Changes in protein abundance are observed in bacterial isolates from a natural host

    PubMed Central

    Rees, Megan A.; Stinear, Timothy P.; Goode, Robert J. A.; Coppel, Ross L.; Smith, Alexander I.; Kleifeld, Oded

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial proteomic studies frequently use strains cultured in synthetic liquid media over many generations. It is uncertain whether bacterial proteins expressed under these conditions will be the same as the repertoire found in natural environments, or when bacteria are infecting a host organism. Thus, genomic and proteomic characterization of bacteria derived from the host environment in comparison to reference strains grown in the lab, should aid understanding of pathogenesis. Isolates of Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis were obtained from the lymph nodes of three naturally infected sheep and compared to a laboratory reference strain using bottom-up proteomics, after whole genome sequencing of each of the field isolates. These comparisons were performed following growth in liquid media that allowed us to reach the required protein amount for proteomic analysis. Over 1350 proteins were identified in the isolated strains, from which unique proteome features were revealed. Several of the identified proteins demonstrated a significant abundance difference in the field isolates compared to the reference strain even though there were no obvious differences in the DNA sequence of the corresponding gene or in nearby non-coding DNA. Higher abundance in the field isolates was observed for proteins related to hypoxia and nutrient deficiency responses as well as to thiopeptide biosynthesis. PMID:26528441

  10. Processing and characterization of natural cellulose fibers/thermoset polymer composites.

    PubMed

    Thakur, Vijay Kumar; Thakur, Manju Kumari

    2014-08-30

    Recently natural cellulose fibers from different biorenewable resources have attracted the considerable attraction of research community all around the globe owing to their unique intrinsic properties such as biodegradability, easy availability, environmental friendliness, flexibility, easy processing and impressive physico-mechanical properties. Natural cellulose fibers based materials are finding their applications in a number of fields ranging from automotive to biomedical. Natural cellulose fibers have been frequently used as the reinforcement component in polymers to add the specific properties in the final product. A variety of cellulose fibers based polymer composite materials have been developed using various synthetic strategies. Seeing the immense advantages of cellulose fibers, in this article we discuss the processing of biorenewable natural cellulose fibers; chemical functionalization of cellulose fibers; synthesis of polymer resins; different strategies to prepare cellulose based green polymer composites, and diverse applications of natural cellulose fibers/polymer composite materials. The article provides an in depth analysis and comprehensive knowledge to the beginners in the field of natural cellulose fibers/polymer composites. The prime aim of this review article is to demonstrate the recent development and emerging applications of natural cellulose fibers and their polymer materials.

  11. Biodegradability of regenerated cellulose films coated with polyurethane/natural polymers interpenetrating polymer networks

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, L.; Zhou, J.; Huang, J.; Gong, P. Zhou, Q.; Zheng, L.; Du, Y.

    1999-11-01

    Interpenetrating polymer network (IPN) coatings synthesized from castor-oil-based polyurethane (PU) with chitosan, nitrocellulose, or elaeostearin were coated on regenerated cellulose (RC) film for curing at 80--100 C for 2--5 min, providing biodegradable, water-resistant cellulose films coded, respectively, as RCCH, RCNC, and RCEs. The coated films were buried in natural soil for decaying and inoculated with a spore suspension of fungi on the agar medium, respectively, to test biodegradability. The viscosity-average molecular weight, M{sub {eta}}, and the weight of the degraded films decreased sharply with the progress of degradation. The degradation half-lifes, t{sub 1/2}, of the films in soil at 30 C were found to be 19 days for RC, 25 days for RCNC, 32 days for RCCH, and 45 days for the RCEs films. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) showed that the extent of decay followed in the order RC {gt} RCNC {gt} RCCH {gt} RCEs. SEM, infrared (IR), high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), and CO{sub 2} evolution results indicated that the microorganisms directly attacked the water-resistant coating layer and then penetrated into the cellulose to speedily metabolize, while accompanying with producing CO{sub 2}, H{sub 2}O, glucose cleaved from cellulose, and small molecules decomposed from the coatings.

  12. Capturing carbon dioxide as a polymer from natural gas.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Chih-Chau; Tour, Josiah J; Kittrell, Carter; Espinal, Laura; Alemany, Lawrence B; Tour, James M

    2014-06-03

    Natural gas is considered the cleanest and recently the most abundant fossil fuel source, yet when it is extracted from wells, it often contains 10-20 mol% carbon dioxide (20-40 wt%), which is generally vented to the atmosphere. Efforts are underway to contain this carbon dioxide at the well-head using inexpensive and non-corrosive methods. Here we report nucleophilic porous carbons are synthesized from simple and inexpensive carbon-sulphur and carbon-nitrogen precursors. Infrared, Raman and (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance signatures substantiate carbon dioxide fixation by polymerization in the carbon channels to form poly(CO2) under much lower pressures than previously required. This growing chemisorbed sulphur- or nitrogen-atom-initiated poly(CO2) chain further displaces physisorbed hydrocarbon, providing a continuous carbon dioxide selectivity. Once returned to ambient conditions, the poly(CO2) spontaneously depolymerizes, leading to a sorbent that can be easily regenerated without the thermal energy input that is required for traditional sorbents.

  13. Capturing carbon dioxide as a polymer from natural gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hwang, Chih-Chau; Tour, Josiah J.; Kittrell, Carter; Espinal, Laura; Alemany, Lawrence B.; Tour, James M.

    2014-06-01

    Natural gas is considered the cleanest and recently the most abundant fossil fuel source, yet when it is extracted from wells, it often contains 10-20 mol% carbon dioxide (20-40 wt%), which is generally vented to the atmosphere. Efforts are underway to contain this carbon dioxide at the well-head using inexpensive and non-corrosive methods. Here we report nucleophilic porous carbons are synthesized from simple and inexpensive carbon-sulphur and carbon-nitrogen precursors. Infrared, Raman and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance signatures substantiate carbon dioxide fixation by polymerization in the carbon channels to form poly(CO2) under much lower pressures than previously required. This growing chemisorbed sulphur- or nitrogen-atom-initiated poly(CO2) chain further displaces physisorbed hydrocarbon, providing a continuous carbon dioxide selectivity. Once returned to ambient conditions, the poly(CO2) spontaneously depolymerizes, leading to a sorbent that can be easily regenerated without the thermal energy input that is required for traditional sorbents.

  14. Polymer Selection Approach for Commonly and Uncommonly Used Natural Fibers Under Uncertainty Environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    AL-Oqla, Faris M.; Sapuan, S. M.

    2015-07-01

    Factors like awareness of the scarcity of non-renewable natural resources, high petroleum prices, and demands for environmental sustainability, as well as reducing the amount of environmental pollution, have led to a renewed interest in natural fiber reinforced polymer composites as a potential bio-based material type. The best polymer matrix type in view of the wide range of conflicting criteria to form a polymeric-based composite material suitable for sustainable industry under an uncertainty environment has still not been sufficiently determined. This work introduces a selection model to evaluate the available polymers for natural fibers to enhance the industrial sustainability theme. The model built was developed to evaluate various polymer types and to determine their relative merits taking account of various conflicting criteria for both commonly used and uncommonly used natural fibers utilizing the analytical hierarchy process technique. It was found that the choice of the best polymer type for a certain fiber type depends strongly on the polymers' intrinsic desirable conflicting characteristics. Polymers evaluations are illustrated for different technical criteria in order to facilitate the polymer selection process for various industrial applications with high confidence levels.

  15. Abundance and phenology patterns of two pond-breeding salamanders determine species interactions in natural populations.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Thomas L; Hocking, Daniel J; Conner, Christopher A; Earl, Julia E; Harper, Elizabeth B; Osbourn, Michael S; Peterman, William E; Rittenhouse, Tracy A G; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-03-01

    Phenology often determines the outcome of interspecific interactions, where early-arriving species often dominate interactions over those arriving later. The effects of phenology on species interactions are especially pronounced in aquatic systems, but the evidence is largely derived from experimental studies. We examined whether differences in breeding phenology between two pond-breeding salamanders (Ambystoma annulatum and A. maculatum) affected metamorph recruitment and demographic traits within natural populations, with the expectation that the fall-breeding A. annulatum would negatively affect the spring-breeding A. maculatum. We monitored populations of each species at five ponds over 4 years using drift fences. Metamorph abundance and survival of A. annulatum were affected by intra- and interspecific processes, whereas metamorph size and date of emigration were primarily influenced by intraspecific effects. Metamorph abundance, snout-vent length, date of emigration and survival for A. maculatum were all predicted by combinations of intra- and interspecific effects, but often showed negative relationships with A. annulatum metamorph traits and abundance. Size and date of metamorphosis were strongly correlated within each species, but in opposite patterns (negative for A. annulatum and positive for A. maculatum), suggesting that the two species use alternative strategies to enhance terrestrial survival and that these factors may influence their interactions. Our results match predictions from experimental studies that suggest recruitment is influenced by intra- and interspecific processes which are determined by phenological differences between species. Incorporating spatiotemporal variability when modeling population dynamics is necessary to understand the importance of phenology in species interactions, especially as shifts in phenology occur under climate change.

  16. Abundance and phenology patterns of two pond-breeding salamanders determine species interactions in natural populations.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Thomas L; Hocking, Daniel J; Conner, Christopher A; Earl, Julia E; Harper, Elizabeth B; Osbourn, Michael S; Peterman, William E; Rittenhouse, Tracy A G; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-03-01

    Phenology often determines the outcome of interspecific interactions, where early-arriving species often dominate interactions over those arriving later. The effects of phenology on species interactions are especially pronounced in aquatic systems, but the evidence is largely derived from experimental studies. We examined whether differences in breeding phenology between two pond-breeding salamanders (Ambystoma annulatum and A. maculatum) affected metamorph recruitment and demographic traits within natural populations, with the expectation that the fall-breeding A. annulatum would negatively affect the spring-breeding A. maculatum. We monitored populations of each species at five ponds over 4 years using drift fences. Metamorph abundance and survival of A. annulatum were affected by intra- and interspecific processes, whereas metamorph size and date of emigration were primarily influenced by intraspecific effects. Metamorph abundance, snout-vent length, date of emigration and survival for A. maculatum were all predicted by combinations of intra- and interspecific effects, but often showed negative relationships with A. annulatum metamorph traits and abundance. Size and date of metamorphosis were strongly correlated within each species, but in opposite patterns (negative for A. annulatum and positive for A. maculatum), suggesting that the two species use alternative strategies to enhance terrestrial survival and that these factors may influence their interactions. Our results match predictions from experimental studies that suggest recruitment is influenced by intra- and interspecific processes which are determined by phenological differences between species. Incorporating spatiotemporal variability when modeling population dynamics is necessary to understand the importance of phenology in species interactions, especially as shifts in phenology occur under climate change. PMID:25413866

  17. The nature of nonfreezing water in carbohydrate polymers.

    PubMed

    Kocherbitov, Vitaly

    2016-10-01

    In an aqueous environment, carbohydrate polymers are surrounded by hydration shells consisting of water molecules that are sometimes called "bound". When polymer solutions are subjected to low temperatures, a part of water turns into ice, another part remains in the biopolymer phase and is called "nonfreezing water". Thermodynamic analysis of water freezing shows that the amount of non-freezing water does not reflect the amount of bound water, neither can it be used as a measure of strength of polymer-water interactions. Upon deep cooling, crystallization of water should desiccate polymers more than is observed in experiment. The reason for existence of non-freezing water is an interplay between the crystallization of water and the glass transition in biopolymers that prevents dehydration.

  18. The nature of nonfreezing water in carbohydrate polymers.

    PubMed

    Kocherbitov, Vitaly

    2016-10-01

    In an aqueous environment, carbohydrate polymers are surrounded by hydration shells consisting of water molecules that are sometimes called "bound". When polymer solutions are subjected to low temperatures, a part of water turns into ice, another part remains in the biopolymer phase and is called "nonfreezing water". Thermodynamic analysis of water freezing shows that the amount of non-freezing water does not reflect the amount of bound water, neither can it be used as a measure of strength of polymer-water interactions. Upon deep cooling, crystallization of water should desiccate polymers more than is observed in experiment. The reason for existence of non-freezing water is an interplay between the crystallization of water and the glass transition in biopolymers that prevents dehydration. PMID:27312645

  19. Natural abundant (17) O NMR in a 1.5-T Halbach magnet.

    PubMed

    Sørensen, Morten K; Bakharev, Oleg N; Jensen, Ole; Nielsen, Niels Chr

    2016-06-01

    We present mobile, low-field (17) O NMR as a means for monitoring oxygen in liquids. Whereas oxygen is one of the most important elements, oxygen NMR is limited by a poor sensitivity related to low natural abundance and gyro-magnetic ratio of the NMR active (17) O isotope. Here, we demonstrate (17) O NMR detection at a Larmor frequency of 8.74 MHz in a 1.5-T Halbach neodymium magnet with a home-built digital NMR instrument suitable for large-scale production and in-line monitoring applications. The proposed (17) O NMR sensor may be applied for direct, noninvasive measurements of water content in, for example, oil, manure, or food in automated quality or process control. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:25641664

  20. Measuring long-lived 13C2 state lifetimes at natural abundance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claytor, Kevin; Theis, Thomas; Feng, Yesu; Warren, Warren

    2014-02-01

    Long-lived disconnected eigenstates (for example, the singlet state in a system with two nearly equivalent carbons, or the singlet-singlet state in a system with two chemically equivalent carbons and two chemically equivalent hydrogens) hold the potential to drastically extend the lifetime of hyperpolarization in molecular tracers for in vivo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). However, a first-principles calculation of the expected lifetime (and thus selection of potential imaging agents) is made very difficult because of the large variety of relevant intra- and intermolecular relaxation mechanisms. As a result, all previous measurements relied on costly and time consuming syntheses of 13C labeled compounds. Here we show that it is possible to determine 13C singlet state lifetimes by detecting the naturally abundant doubly-labeled species. This approach allows for rapid and low cost screening of potential molecular biomarkers bearing long-lived states.

  1. Natural abundance 14N and 15N solid-state NMR of pharmaceuticals and their polymorphs

    DOE PAGES

    Veinberg, Stanislav L.; Johnston, Karen E.; Jaroszewicz, Michael J.; Kispal, Brianna M.; Mireault, Christopher R.; Kobayashi, Takeshi; Pruski, Marek; Schurko, Robert W.

    2016-06-08

    14N ultra-wideline (UW), 1H{15N} indirectly-detected HETCOR (idHETCOR) and 15N dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) solid-state NMR (SSNMR) experiments, in combination with plane-wave density functional theory (DFT) calculations of 14N EFG tensors, were utilized to characterize a series of nitrogen-containing active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), including HCl salts of scopolamine, alprenolol, isoprenaline, acebutolol, dibucaine, nicardipine, and ranitidine. Here, a case study applying these methods for the differentiation of polymorphs of bupivacaine HCl is also presented. All experiments were conducted upon samples with naturally-abundant nitrogen isotopes. For most of the APIs, it was possible to acquire frequency-stepped UW 14N SSNMR spectra of stationarymore » samples, which display powder patterns corresponding to pseudo-tetrahedral (i.e., RR'R"NH+ and RR'NH2+) or other (i.e., RNH2 and RNO2) nitrogen environments.« less

  2. Natural-abundance solid-state 2H NMR spectroscopy at high magnetic field.

    PubMed

    Aliev, Abil E; Mann, Sam E; Iuga, Dinu; Hughes, Colan E; Harris, Kenneth D M

    2011-06-01

    High-resolution solid-state (2)H NMR spectroscopy provides a method for measuring (1)H NMR chemical shifts in solids and is advantageous over the direct measurement of high-resolution solid-state (1)H NMR spectra, as it requires only the application of routine magic angle sample spinning (MAS) and routine (1)H decoupling methods, in contrast to the requirement for complex pulse sequences for homonuclear (1)H decoupling and ultrafast MAS in the case of high-resolution solid-state (1)H NMR. However, a significant obstacle to the routine application of high-resolution solid-state (2)H NMR is the very low natural abundance of (2)H, with the consequent problem of inherently low sensitivity. Here, we explore the feasibility of measuring (2)H MAS NMR spectra of various solids with natural isotopic abundances at high magnetic field (850 MHz), focusing on samples of amino acids, peptides, collagen, and various organic solids. The results show that high-resolution solid-state (2)H NMR can be used successfully to measure isotropic (1)H chemical shifts in favorable cases, particularly for mobile functional groups, such as methyl and -N(+)H(3) groups, and in some cases phenyl groups. Furthermore, we demonstrate that routine (2)H MAS NMR measurements can be exploited for assessing the relative dynamics of different functional groups in a molecule and for assessing whole-molecule motions in the solid state. The magnitude and field-dependence of second-order shifts due to the (2)H quadrupole interaction are also investigated, on the basis of analysis of simulated and experimental (1)H and (2)H MAS NMR spectra of fully deuterated and selectively deuterated samples of the α polymorph of glycine at two different magnetic field strengths.

  3. Measurement of isotope abundance variations in nature by gravimetric spiking isotope dilution analysis (GS-IDA).

    PubMed

    Chew, Gina; Walczyk, Thomas

    2013-04-01

    Subtle variations in the isotopic composition of elements carry unique information about physical and chemical processes in nature and are now exploited widely in diverse areas of research. Reliable measurement of natural isotope abundance variations is among the biggest challenges in inorganic mass spectrometry as they are highly sensitive to methodological bias. For decades, double spiking of the sample with a mix of two stable isotopes has been considered the reference technique for measuring such variations both by multicollector-inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (MC-ICPMS) and multicollector-thermal ionization mass spectrometry (MC-TIMS). However, this technique can only be applied to elements having at least four stable isotopes. Here we present a novel approach that requires measurement of three isotope signals only and which is more robust than the conventional double spiking technique. This became possible by gravimetric mixing of the sample with an isotopic spike in different proportions and by applying principles of isotope dilution for data analysis (GS-IDA). The potential and principle use of the technique is demonstrated for Mg in human urine using MC-TIMS for isotopic analysis. Mg is an element inaccessible to double spiking methods as it consists of three stable isotopes only and shows great potential for metabolically induced isotope effects waiting to be explored.

  4. On the nature of sn stars. I. A detailed abundance study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saffe, C.; Levato, H.

    2014-02-01

    The sn stars were first discoved by Abt & Levato when studying the spectral types in different open clusters. These stars present sharp Balmer lines, sharp metallic lines (C II, Si II, Ca II, Ti II, Fe II), and broad coreless He I lines. Some of the sn stars seem to be related to CP stars. Initially Abt & Levato proposed a shell-like nature to explain the sn stars, although this scenario was subsequently questioned. There is no general agreement about their origin. We aim to derive abundances for a sample of 9 stars, including sn and non-sn stars, to determine the possible relation between sn and CP stars and compare their chemical abundances. That most sn stars belong to open clusters allows us to search for a possible relation with fundamental parameters, including the age and rotation. We also study the possible contribution of different effects to the broad He I lines observed in these stars, such as Stark broadening and the possible He-stratification. Effective temperature and gravity were estimated by Strömgren photometry and then refined by requiring ionization and excitation equilibrium of Fe lines. We derived the abundances by fitting the observed spectra with synthetic spectra using an iterative procedure with the SYNTHE and ATLAS9 codes. We derived metallic abundances of 23 different chemical elements for 9 stars and obtained low projected rotational velocities for the sn stars in our sample (vsini up to 69 km s-1). We also compared 5 stars that belong to the same cluster (NGC 6475) and show that the sn characteristics appear in the 3 stars with the lower rotational velocity. However, the apparent preference of sn stars for objects with the lower vsini values should be taken with caution due to the small number of objects studied here. We analysed the photospheric chemical composition of sn stars and show that approximately ~40% of them display chemical peculiarities (such as He-weak and HgMn stars) within a range of temperature of 10 300 K-14 500 K

  5. Archaeal community diversity and abundance changes along a natural salinity gradient in estuarine sediments

    PubMed Central

    Webster, Gordon; O'Sullivan, Louise A.; Meng, Yiyu; Williams, Angharad S.; Sass, Andrea M.; Watkins, Andrew J.; Parkes, R. John; Weightman, Andrew J.

    2014-01-01

    Archaea are widespread in marine sediments, but their occurrence and relationship with natural salinity gradients in estuarine sediments is not well understood. This study investigated the abundance and diversity of Archaea in sediments at three sites [Brightlingsea (BR), Alresford (AR) and Hythe (HY)] along the Colne Estuary, using quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) of 16S rRNA genes, DNA hybridization, Archaea 16S rRNA and mcrA gene phylogenetic analyses. Total archaeal 16S rRNA abundance in sediments were higher in the low-salinity brackish sediments from HY (2–8 × 107 16S rRNA gene copies cm−3) than the high-salinity marine sites from BR and AR (2 × 104–2 × 107 and 4 × 106–2 × 107 16S rRNA gene copies cm−3, respectively), although as a proportion of the total prokaryotes Archaea were higher at BR than at AR or HY. Phylogenetic analysis showed that members of the ‘Bathyarchaeota’ (MCG), Thaumarchaeota and methanogenic Euryarchaeota were the dominant groups of Archaea. The composition of Thaumarchaeota varied with salinity, as only ‘marine’ group I.1a was present in marine sediments (BR). Methanogen 16S rRNA genes from low-salinity sediments at HY were dominated by acetotrophic Methanosaeta and putatively hydrogentrophic Methanomicrobiales, whereas the marine site (BR) was dominated by mcrA genes belonging to methylotrophic Methanococcoides, versatile Methanosarcina and methanotrophic ANME-2a. Overall, the results indicate that salinity and associated factors play a role in controlling diversity and distribution of Archaea in estuarine sediments. PMID:25764553

  6. Archaeal community diversity and abundance changes along a natural salinity gradient in estuarine sediments.

    PubMed

    Webster, Gordon; O'Sullivan, Louise A; Meng, Yiyu; Williams, Angharad S; Sass, Andrea M; Watkins, Andrew J; Parkes, R John; Weightman, Andrew J

    2015-02-01

    Archaea are widespread in marine sediments, but their occurrence and relationship with natural salinity gradients in estuarine sediments is not well understood. This study investigated the abundance and diversity of Archaea in sediments at three sites [Brightlingsea (BR), Alresford (AR) and Hythe (HY)] along the Colne Estuary, using quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) of 16S rRNA genes, DNA hybridization, Archaea 16S rRNA and mcrA gene phylogenetic analyses. Total archaeal 16S rRNA abundance in sediments were higher in the low-salinity brackish sediments from HY (2-8 × 10(7) 16S rRNA gene copies cm(-3)) than the high-salinity marine sites from BR and AR (2 × 10(4)-2 × 10(7) and 4 × 10(6)-2 × 10(7) 16S rRNA gene copies cm(-3), respectively), although as a proportion of the total prokaryotes Archaea were higher at BR than at AR or HY. Phylogenetic analysis showed that members of the 'Bathyarchaeota' (MCG), Thaumarchaeota and methanogenic Euryarchaeota were the dominant groups of Archaea. The composition of Thaumarchaeota varied with salinity, as only 'marine' group I.1a was present in marine sediments (BR). Methanogen 16S rRNA genes from low-salinity sediments at HY were dominated by acetotrophic Methanosaeta and putatively hydrogentrophic Methanomicrobiales, whereas the marine site (BR) was dominated by mcrA genes belonging to methylotrophic Methanococcoides, versatile Methanosarcina and methanotrophic ANME-2a. Overall, the results indicate that salinity and associated factors play a role in controlling diversity and distribution of Archaea in estuarine sediments.

  7. 13C and 15N natural isotope abundance reflects breast cancer cell metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Tea, Illa; Martineau, Estelle; Antheaume, Ingrid; Lalande, Julie; Mauve, Caroline; Gilard, Francoise; Barillé-Nion, Sophie; Blackburn, Anneke C.; Tcherkez, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide. Despite the information provided by anatomopathological assessment and molecular markers (such as receptor expression ER, PR, HER2), breast cancer therapies and prognostics depend on the metabolic properties of tumor cells. However, metabolomics have not provided a robust and congruent biomarker yet, likely because individual metabolite contents are insufficient to encapsulate all of the alterations in metabolic fluxes. Here, we took advantage of natural 13C and 15N isotope abundance to show there are isotopic differences between healthy and cancer biopsy tissues or between healthy and malignant cultured cell lines. Isotope mass balance further suggests that these differences are mostly related to lipid metabolism, anaplerosis and urea cycle, three pathways known to be impacted in malignant cells. Our results demonstrate that the isotope signature is a good descriptor of metabolism since it integrates modifications in C partitioning and N excretion altogether. Our present study is thus a starting point to possible clinical applications such as patient screening and biopsy characterization in every cancer that is associated with metabolic changes. PMID:27678172

  8. Natural-abundance sup 13 C NMR study of glycogen repletion in human liver and muscle

    SciTech Connect

    Jue, T.; Rothman, D.L.; Tavitian, B.A.; Shulman, R.G. )

    1989-03-01

    Optimizing the surface-coil design and spectral-acquisition parameters has led to the observation of the {sup 13}C NMR natural abundance glycogen signal in man at 2.1 T. Both the human muscle and hepatic glycogen signals can be detected definitively with a time resolution of {approx}13 min. A {sup 1}H/{sup 13}C concentric surface coil was used. The {sup 1}H outer coil was 11 cm in diameter; the {sup 13}C inner coil was 8 cm in diameter. The coils were tuned to 89.3 MHz and 22.4 MHz, respectively. The {sup 1}H coil was used for optimizing field homogeneity (shimming) the magnet and for single-frequency decoupling of the C{sub 1} glycogen signal. Total power deposition from both the transmitter pulse and the continuous wave decoupling did not exceed the Food and Drug Administration guideline of 8 W/kg of tissue. Experiments were done for which healthy subjects returned to the magnets at different times for {sup 13}C NMR measurement. The spectral difference between experiments was within the noise in the C{sub 1} glycogen region. Because of the spectral reproducibility and the signal sensitivity, hepatic glycogen repletion can be followed. Four hours postprandial, hepatic glycogen increases by 3.8 times from the basal fasted state. The hepatic glycogen data correspond directly to previous biopsy results and support the use of {sup 13}C NMR as a noninvasive probe of human metabolism.

  9. Natural abundance deuterium and 18-oxygen effects on the precision of the doubly labeled water method

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horvitz, M. A.; Schoeller, D. A.

    2001-01-01

    The doubly labeled water method for measuring total energy expenditure is subject to error from natural variations in the background 2H and 18O in body water. There is disagreement as to whether the variations in background abundances of the two stable isotopes covary and what relative doses of 2H and 18O minimize the impact of variation on the precision of the method. We have performed two studies to investigate the amount and covariance of the background variations. These were a study of urine collected weekly from eight subjects who remained in the Madison, WI locale for 6 wk and frequent urine samples from 14 subjects during round-trip travel to a locale > or = 500 miles from Madison, WI. Background variation in excess of analytical error was detected in six of the eight nontravelers, and covariance was demonstrated in four subjects. Background variation was detected in all 14 travelers, and covariance was demonstrated in 11 subjects. The median slopes of the regression lines of delta2H vs. delta18O were 6 and 7, respectively. Modeling indicated that 2H and 18O doses yielding a 6:1 ratio of final enrichments should minimize this error introduced to the doubly labeled water method.

  10. Natural Abundance 17O Nuclear Magnetic Resonance and Computational Modeling Studies of Lithium Based Liquid Electrolytes

    SciTech Connect

    Deng, Xuchu; Hu, Mary Y.; Wei, Xiaoliang; Wang, Wei; Chen, Zhong; Liu, Jun; Hu, Jian Z.

    2015-07-01

    Natural abundance 17O NMR measurements were conducted on electrolyte solutions consisting of Li[CF3SO2NSO2CF3] (LiTFSI) dissolved in the solvents of ethylene carbonate (EC), propylene carbonate (PC), ethyl methyl carbonate (EMC), and their mixtures at various concentrations. It was observed that 17O chemical shifts of solvent molecules change with the concentration of LiTFSI. The chemical shift displacements of carbonyl oxygen are evidently greater than those of ethereal oxygen, strongly indicating that Li+ ion is coordinated with carbonyl oxygen rather than ethereal oxygen. To understand the detailed molecular interaction, computational modeling of 17O chemical shifts was carried out on proposed solvation structures. By comparing the predicted chemical shifts with the experimental values, it is found that a Li+ ion is coordinated with four double bond oxygen atoms from EC, PC, EMC and TFSI- anion. In the case of excessive amount of solvents of EC, PC and EMC the Li+ coordinated solvent molecules are undergoing quick exchange with bulk solvent molecules, resulting in average 17O chemical shifts. Several kinds of solvation structures are identified, where the proportion of each structure in the liquid electrolytes investigated depends on the concentration of LiTFSI.

  11. Probing surface hydrogen bonding and dynamics by natural abundance, multidimensional, 17O DNP-NMR spectroscopy

    DOE PAGES

    Perras, Frederic A.; Chaudhary, Umesh; Slowing, Igor I.; Pruski, Marek

    2016-05-06

    Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP)-enhanced solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (SSNMR) spectroscopy is increasingly being used as a tool for the atomic-level characterization of surface sites. DNP surface-enhanced SSNMR spectroscopy of materials has, however, been limited to studying relatively receptive nuclei, and the particularly rare 17O nuclide, which is of great interest for materials science, has not been utilized. We demonstrate that advanced 17O SSNMR experiments can be performed on surface species at natural isotopic abundance using DNP. We use 17O DNP surface-enhanced 2D SSNMR to measure 17O{1H} HETCOR spectra as well as dipolar oscillations on a series of thermally treatedmore » mesoporous silica nanoparticle samples having different pore diameters. These experiments allow for a nonintrusive and unambiguous characterization of hydrogen bonding and dynamics at the surface of the material; no other single experiment can give such details about the interactions at the surface. Lastly, our data show that, upon drying, strongly hydrogen-bonded surface silanols, whose motions are greatly restricted by the interaction when compared to lone silanols, are selectively dehydroxylated.« less

  12. 13C and 15N natural isotope abundance reflects breast cancer cell metabolism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tea, Illa; Martineau, Estelle; Antheaume, Ingrid; Lalande, Julie; Mauve, Caroline; Gilard, Francoise; Barillé-Nion, Sophie; Blackburn, Anneke C.; Tcherkez, Guillaume

    2016-09-01

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide. Despite the information provided by anatomopathological assessment and molecular markers (such as receptor expression ER, PR, HER2), breast cancer therapies and prognostics depend on the metabolic properties of tumor cells. However, metabolomics have not provided a robust and congruent biomarker yet, likely because individual metabolite contents are insufficient to encapsulate all of the alterations in metabolic fluxes. Here, we took advantage of natural 13C and 15N isotope abundance to show there are isotopic differences between healthy and cancer biopsy tissues or between healthy and malignant cultured cell lines. Isotope mass balance further suggests that these differences are mostly related to lipid metabolism, anaplerosis and urea cycle, three pathways known to be impacted in malignant cells. Our results demonstrate that the isotope signature is a good descriptor of metabolism since it integrates modifications in C partitioning and N excretion altogether. Our present study is thus a starting point to possible clinical applications such as patient screening and biopsy characterization in every cancer that is associated with metabolic changes.

  13. [Humus composition and stable carbon isotope natural abundance in paddy soil under long-term fertilization].

    PubMed

    Ma, Li; Yang, Lin-Zhang; Ci, En; Wang, Yan; Yin, Shi-Xue; Shen, Ming-Xing

    2008-09-01

    Soil samples were collected from an experimental paddy field with long-term (26 years) fertilization in Taihu Lake region of Jiangsu Province to study the effects of different fertilization on the organic carbon distribution and stable carbon isotope natural abundance (delta 13C) in the soil profile, and on the humus composition. The results showed that long-term fertilization increased the organic carbon content in top soil significantly, and there was a significantly negative exponential correlation between soil organic carbon content and soil depth (P < 0.01). The organic carbon content in 10-30 cm soil layer under chemical fertilizations and in 20-40 cm soil layer under organic fertilizations was relatively stable. Soil delta 13C increased gradually with soil depth, its variation range being from -24% per thousand to -28 per thousand, and had a significantly negative linear correlation with soil organic carbon content (P < 0.05). In 0-20 cm soil layer, the delta 13C in treatments organic manure (M), M + NP, M + NPK, M + straw (R) + N, and R + N decreased significantly; while in 30-50 cm soil layer, the delta 13C in all organic fertilization treatments except R + N increased significantly. Tightly combined humus (humin) was the main humus composition in the soil, occupying 50% or more, and the rest were loosely and stably combined humus. Long-term fertilization increased the content of loosely combined humus and the ratio of humic acid (HA) to fulvic acid (FA).

  14. Relation of desert pupfish abundance to selected environmental variables in natural and manmade habitats in the Salton Sea basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Martin, B.A.; Saiki, M.K.

    2005-01-01

    We assessed the relation between abundance of desert pupfish, Cyprinodon macularius, and selected biological and physicochemical variables in natural and manmade habitats within the Salton Sea Basin. Field sampling in a natural tributary, Salt Creek, and three agricultural drains captured eight species including pupfish (1.1% of the total catch), the only native species encountered. According to Bray-Curtis resemblance functions, fish species assemblages differed mostly between Salt Creek and the drains (i.e., the three drains had relatively similar species assemblages). Pupfish numbers and environmental variables varied among sites and sample periods. Canonical correlation showed that pupfish abundance was positively correlated with abundance of western mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis, and negatively correlated with abundance of porthole livebearers, Poeciliopsis gracilis, tilapias (Sarotherodon mossambica and Tilapia zillii), longjaw mudsuckers, Gillichthys mirabilis, and mollies (Poecilia latipinnaandPoecilia mexicana). In addition, pupfish abundance was positively correlated with cover, pH, and salinity, and negatively correlated with sediment factor (a measure of sediment grain size) and dissolved oxygen. Pupfish abundance was generally highest in habitats where water quality extremes (especially high pH and salinity, and low dissolved oxygen) seemingly limited the occurrence of nonnative fishes. This study also documented evidence of predation by mudsuckers on pupfish. These findings support the contention of many resource managers that pupfish populations are adversely influenced by ecological interactions with nonnative fishes. ?? Springer 2005.

  15. Natural abundance deuterium nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy: Study of the biosynthesis of monoterpenes

    SciTech Connect

    Leopold, M.F.

    1990-01-01

    Deuterium NMR spectroscopy at natural abundance (D NMR-na) is a new technique for exploring the biosynthesis of small molecules such as monoterpenes. The analysis of relative site-specific deuterium integration values is an effective means of measuring isotope effects, and examining the regio- and stereochemistry of biosynthetic reactions. The deuterium integration values of linalyl acetate and limonene isolated from the same source were consistent and showed that proton abstraction from the postulated {alpha}-terpinyl cation intermediate to form limonene is regioselective from the methyl derived from the Cs methyl of the precursor, geranyl diphosphate. This regiochemistry was observed in limonene samples from different sources and the measured primary kinetic isotope effect ranged from 0.25 to in excess of 100 (no deuterium was removed within experimental error). Various {alpha}- and {beta}-pinene samples were isolated and D NMR-na analysis showed evidence of isotopically sensitive partitioning of the pinylcation in the formation of these products. This spectral analysis supported published radiolabeling studies but did not require synthesis of substrates or enzyme purification. The formation of 3-carene occurs without isomerization of the double bond which was previously postulated. The olefinic deuterium of the bicyclic compound was traced to the depleted deuterium at C{sub 2} of isopentyl diphosphate by D NMR-na data and this supported unpublished radiolabeling studies. Study of irregular monoterpenes, chrysanthemyl acetate and lyratyl acetate, showed partitioning of dimethylallyl diphosphate (DMAPP) by chrysanthemyl cyclase. The {alpha}-secondary kinetic isotope effect of 1.06-1.12, obtained from relative deuterium integration values, suggested that S{sub N}1 ionization of one molecule of DMAPP is the first step in the condensation reaction.

  16. The Determination of the Natural Abundance of the Isotopes of Chlorine: An Introductory Experiment in Mass Spectrometry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Malley, Rebecca M.

    1982-01-01

    Describes a laboratory experiment which introduces basic principles and experimental techniques of mass spectrometry for fourth year undergraduate (B.Sc.) students. Laboratory procedures, background information, and discussion of results are provided for the experiment in which the natural isotopic abundance of chlorine is determined. (Author/JN)

  17. Seasonal variation in natural abundance of 2H and 18O in urine samples from rural Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    Dugas, Lara R.; Brieger, William; Tayo, Bamidele O.; Alabi, Tunrayo; Schoeller, Dale A.; Luke, Amy

    2015-01-01

    The doubly labeled water (DLW) method is used to measure free-living energy expenditure in humans. Inherent to this technique is the assumption that natural abundances of stable isotopes 2H and 18O in body water remain constant over the course of the measurement period and after elimination of the loading dose of DLW will return to the same predose level. To determine variability in the natural abundances of 2H and 18O in humans living in a region with seasonal shifts in rain patterns and sources of drinking water, over the course of 12 mo we collected weekly urine samples from four individuals living in southwest Nigeria as well as samples of their drinking water. From ongoing regional studies of hypertension, obesity, and energy expenditure, we estimated average water turnover rate, urine volumes, and sodium and potassium excretion. Results suggest that 2H and 18O in urine, mean concentrations of urinary sodium and potassium, urine volume, and total body turnover differed significantly from dry to rainy season. Additionally, seasonal weather variables (mean monthly maximum temperatures, total monthly rainfall, and minimum relative humidity) were all significantly associated with natural abundances in urine. No seasonal difference was observed in drinking water samples. Findings suggest that natural abundances in urine may not remain constant as assumed, and studies incorporating DLW measurements across the transition of seasons should interpret results with caution unless appropriate doses of the tracers are used. PMID:25977450

  18. Seasonal variation in natural abundance of 2H and 18O in urine samples from rural Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Harbison, Justin E; Dugas, Lara R; Brieger, William; Tayo, Bamidele O; Alabi, Tunrayo; Schoeller, Dale A; Luke, Amy

    2015-07-01

    The doubly labeled water (DLW) method is used to measure free-living energy expenditure in humans. Inherent to this technique is the assumption that natural abundances of stable isotopes (2)H and (18)O in body water remain constant over the course of the measurement period and after elimination of the loading dose of DLW will return to the same predose level. To determine variability in the natural abundances of (2)H and (18)O in humans living in a region with seasonal shifts in rain patterns and sources of drinking water, over the course of 12 mo we collected weekly urine samples from four individuals living in southwest Nigeria as well as samples of their drinking water. From ongoing regional studies of hypertension, obesity, and energy expenditure, we estimated average water turnover rate, urine volumes, and sodium and potassium excretion. Results suggest that (2)H and (18)O in urine, mean concentrations of urinary sodium and potassium, urine volume, and total body turnover differed significantly from dry to rainy season. Additionally, seasonal weather variables (mean monthly maximum temperatures, total monthly rainfall, and minimum relative humidity) were all significantly associated with natural abundances in urine. No seasonal difference was observed in drinking water samples. Findings suggest that natural abundances in urine may not remain constant as assumed, and studies incorporating DLW measurements across the transition of seasons should interpret results with caution unless appropriate doses of the tracers are used.

  19. Novel synthesis strategies for natural polymer and composite biomaterials as potential scaffolds for tissue engineering

    PubMed Central

    Ko, Hsu-Feng; Sfeir, Charles; Kumta, Prashant N.

    2010-01-01

    Recent developments in tissue engineering approaches frequently revolve around the use of three-dimensional scaffolds to function as the template for cellular activities to repair, rebuild and regenerate damaged or lost tissues. While there are several biomaterials to select as three-dimensional scaffolds, it is generally agreed that a biomaterial to be used in tissue engineering needs to possess certain material characteristics such as biocompatibility, suitable surface chemistry, interconnected porosity, desired mechanical properties and biodegradability. The use of naturally derived polymers as three-dimensional scaffolds has been gaining widespread attention owing to their favourable attributes of biocompatibility, low cost and ease of processing. This paper discusses the synthesis of various polysaccharide-based, naturally derived polymers, and the potential of using these biomaterials to serve as tissue engineering three-dimensional scaffolds is also evaluated. In this study, naturally derived polymers, specifically cellulose, chitosan, alginate and agarose, and their composites, are examined. Single-component scaffolds of plain cellulose, plain chitosan and plain alginate as well as composite scaffolds of cellulose–alginate, cellulose–agarose, cellulose–chitosan, chitosan–alginate and chitosan–agarose are synthesized, and their suitability as tissue engineering scaffolds is assessed. It is shown that naturally derived polymers in the form of hydrogels can be synthesized, and the lyophilization technique is used to synthesize various composites comprising these natural polymers. The composite scaffolds appear to be sponge-like after lyophilization. Scanning electron microscopy is used to demonstrate the formation of an interconnected porous network within the polymeric scaffold following lyophilization. It is also established that HeLa cells attach and proliferate well on scaffolds of cellulose, chitosan or alginate. The synthesis protocols reported

  20. Interactions between natural-occurring landscape conditions and land use influencing the abundance of riverine smallmouth bass, micropterus dolomieu

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brewer, S.K.; Rabeni, C.F.

    2011-01-01

    This study examined how interactions between natural landscape features and land use influenced the abundance of smallmouth bass, Micropterus dolomieu, in Missouri, USA, streams. Stream segments were placed into one of four groups based on natural-occurring watershed characteristics (soil texture and soil permeability) predicted to relate to smallmouth bass abundance. Within each group, stream segments were assigned forest (n = 3), pasture (n = 3), or urban (n = 3) designations based on the percentages of land use within each watershed. Analyses of variance indicated smallmouth bass densities differed between land use and natural conditions. Decision tree models indicated abundance was highest in forested stream segments and lowest in urban stream segments, regardless of group designation. Land use explained the most variation in decision tree models, but in-channel features of temperature, flow, and sediment also contributed significantly. These results are unique and indicate the importance of natural-occurring watershed conditions in defining the potential of populations and how finer-scale filters interact with land use to further alter population potential. Smallmouth bass has differing vulnerabilities to land-use attributes, and the better the natural watershed conditions are for population success, the more resilient these populations will be when land conversion occurs.

  1. Natural abundance (14)N and (15)N solid-state NMR of pharmaceuticals and their polymorphs.

    PubMed

    Veinberg, Stanislav L; Johnston, Karen E; Jaroszewicz, Michael J; Kispal, Brianna M; Mireault, Christopher R; Kobayashi, Takeshi; Pruski, Marek; Schurko, Robert W

    2016-06-29

    (14)N ultra-wideline (UW), (1)H{(15)N} indirectly-detected HETCOR (idHETCOR) and (15)N dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) solid-state NMR (SSNMR) experiments, in combination with plane-wave density functional theory (DFT) calculations of (14)N EFG tensors, were utilized to characterize a series of nitrogen-containing active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), including HCl salts of scopolamine, alprenolol, isoprenaline, acebutolol, dibucaine, nicardipine, and ranitidine. A case study applying these methods for the differentiation of polymorphs of bupivacaine HCl is also presented. All experiments were conducted upon samples with naturally-abundant nitrogen isotopes. For most of the APIs, it was possible to acquire frequency-stepped UW (14)N SSNMR spectra of stationary samples, which display powder patterns corresponding to pseudo-tetrahedral (i.e., RR'R''NH(+) and RR'NH2(+)) or other (i.e., RNH2 and RNO2) nitrogen environments. Directly-excited (14)N NMR spectra were acquired using the WURST-CPMG pulse sequence, which incorporates WURST (wideband, uniform rate, and smooth truncation) pulses and a CPMG (Carr-Purcell Meiboom-Gill) refocusing protocol. In certain cases, spectra were acquired using (1)H → (14)N broadband cross-polarization, via the BRAIN-CP (broadband adiabatic inversion - cross polarization) pulse sequence. These spectra provide (14)N electric field gradient (EFG) tensor parameters and orientations that are particularly sensitive to variations in local structure and intermolecular hydrogen-bonding interactions. The (1)H{(15)N} idHETCOR spectra, acquired under conditions of fast magic-angle spinning (MAS), used CP transfers to provide (1)H-(15)N chemical shift correlations for all nitrogen environments, except for two sites in acebutolol and nicardipine. One of these two sites (RR'NH2(+) in acebutolol) was successfully detected using the DNP-enhanced (15)N{(1)H} CP/MAS measurement, and one (RNO2 in nicardipine) remained elusive due to the absence of

  2. Is the multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis, the most abundant natural enemy to aphids in agroecosystems?

    PubMed

    Vandereycken, Axel; Durieux, Delphine; Joie, Emilie; Sloggett, John J; Haubruge, Eric; Verheggen, François J

    2013-01-01

    The multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), was introduced into Western Europe in the late 1990s. Since the late 2000s, this species has been commonly considered one of the most abundant aphid predators in most Western European countries. In spite of the large amount of research on H. axyridis, information concerning its relative abundance in agroecosystems is lacking. This study aims to evaluate the abundance of H. axyridis within the aphidophage community in four crops situated in southern Belgium: wheat, Triticum aestivum L. (Poales: Poaceae), corn, Zea mays, potato, Solanum tuberosum (Solanales: Solanaceae), and broad bean Vicia faba (Fabales: Fabaceae). In order to assess the species diversity, the collected data were analyzed by considering (1) the species richness and (2) the evenness according to the Shannon diversity index. Eleven aphidophages were observed in every inventoried agroecosystem, including five abundant species: three coccinellids, the seven-spotted ladybug, Coccinella septempunctata L. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), the 14-spotted Ladybird, Propylea quatuordecimpunctata, and H. axyridis; one hoverfly, the marmalade hoverfly, Episyrphus balteatus De Geer (Diptera: Syrphidae); and one lacewing, the common green lacewing, Chrysoperla carnea Stephens sensu lato (= s.l.) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Harmonia axyridis has been observed to thrive, breed, and reproduce on the four studied crops. Harmonia axyridis is the most abundant predator of aphids in corn followed by C. septempunctata, which is the main aphid predator observed in the three other inventoried crops. In wheat and potato fields, H. axyridis occurs in low numbers compared to other aphidophage. These observations suggest that H. axyridis could be considered an invasive species of agrosystems, and that potato and wheat may intermittently act as refuges for other aphidophages vulnerable to intraguild predation by this invader. Harmonia axyridis

  3. Is the Multicolored Asian Ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis, the Most Abundant Natural Enemy to Aphids in Agroecosystems?

    PubMed Central

    Vandereycken, Axel; Durieux, Delphine; Joie, Emilie; Sloggett, John J.; Haubruge, Eric; Verheggen, François J.

    2013-01-01

    The multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), was introduced into Western Europe in the late 1990s. Since the late 2000s, this species has been commonly considered one of the most abundant aphid predators in most Western European countries. In spite of the large amount of research on H. axyridis, information concerning its relative abundance in agroecosystems is lacking. This study aims to evaluate the abundance of H. axyridis within the aphidophage community in four crops situated in southern Belgium: wheat, Triticum aestivum L. (Poales: Poaceae), corn, Zea mays, potato, Solanum tuberosum (Solanales: Solanaceae), and broad bean Vicia faba (Fabales: Fabaceae). In order to assess the species diversity, the collected data were analyzed by considering (1) the species richness and (2) the evenness according to the Shannon diversity index. Eleven aphidophages were observed in every inventoried agroecosystem, including five abundant species: three coccinellids, the seven-spotted ladybug, Coccinella septempunctata L. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), the 14-spotted Ladybird, Propylea quatuordecimpunctata, and H. axyridis; one hoverfly, the marmalade hoverfly, Episyrphus balteatus De Geer (Diptera: Syrphidae); and one lacewing, the common green lacewing, Chrysoperla carnea Stephens sensu lato (= s.l.) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Harmonia axyridis has been observed to thrive, breed, and reproduce on the four studied crops. Harmonia axyridis is the most abundant predator of aphids in corn followed by C. septempunctata, which is the main aphid predator observed in the three other inventoried crops. In wheat and potato fields, H. axyridis occurs in low numbers compared to other aphidophage. These observations suggest that H. axyridis could be considered an invasive species of agrosystems, and that potato and wheat may intermittently act as refuges for other aphidophages vulnerable to intraguild predation by this invader. Harmonia axyridis

  4. Is the multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis, the most abundant natural enemy to aphids in agroecosystems?

    PubMed

    Vandereycken, Axel; Durieux, Delphine; Joie, Emilie; Sloggett, John J; Haubruge, Eric; Verheggen, François J

    2013-01-01

    The multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), was introduced into Western Europe in the late 1990s. Since the late 2000s, this species has been commonly considered one of the most abundant aphid predators in most Western European countries. In spite of the large amount of research on H. axyridis, information concerning its relative abundance in agroecosystems is lacking. This study aims to evaluate the abundance of H. axyridis within the aphidophage community in four crops situated in southern Belgium: wheat, Triticum aestivum L. (Poales: Poaceae), corn, Zea mays, potato, Solanum tuberosum (Solanales: Solanaceae), and broad bean Vicia faba (Fabales: Fabaceae). In order to assess the species diversity, the collected data were analyzed by considering (1) the species richness and (2) the evenness according to the Shannon diversity index. Eleven aphidophages were observed in every inventoried agroecosystem, including five abundant species: three coccinellids, the seven-spotted ladybug, Coccinella septempunctata L. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), the 14-spotted Ladybird, Propylea quatuordecimpunctata, and H. axyridis; one hoverfly, the marmalade hoverfly, Episyrphus balteatus De Geer (Diptera: Syrphidae); and one lacewing, the common green lacewing, Chrysoperla carnea Stephens sensu lato (= s.l.) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Harmonia axyridis has been observed to thrive, breed, and reproduce on the four studied crops. Harmonia axyridis is the most abundant predator of aphids in corn followed by C. septempunctata, which is the main aphid predator observed in the three other inventoried crops. In wheat and potato fields, H. axyridis occurs in low numbers compared to other aphidophage. These observations suggest that H. axyridis could be considered an invasive species of agrosystems, and that potato and wheat may intermittently act as refuges for other aphidophages vulnerable to intraguild predation by this invader. Harmonia axyridis

  5. Natural abundance 17O DNP two-dimensional and surface-enhanced NMR spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Perras, Frédéric A.; Kobayashi, Takeshi; Pruski, Marek

    2015-06-22

    Due to its extremely low natural abundance and quadrupolar nature, the 17O nuclide is very rarely used for spectroscopic investigation of solids by NMR without isotope enrichment. Additionally, the applicability of dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP), which leads to sensitivity enhancements of 2 orders of magnitude, to 17O is wrought with challenges due to the lack of spin diffusion and low polarization transfer efficiency from 1H. Here, we demonstrate new DNP-based measurements that extend 17O solid-state NMR beyond its current capabilities. The use of the PRESTO technique instead of conventional 1H–17O cross-polarization greatly improves the sensitivity and enables the facile measurement of undistorted line shapes and two-dimensional 1H–17O HETCOR NMR spectra as well as accurate internuclear distance measurements at natural abundance. This was applied for distinguishing hydrogen-bonded and lone 17O sites on the surface of silica gel; the one-dimensional spectrum of which could not be used to extract such detail. As a result, this greatly enhanced sensitivity has enabled, for the first time, the detection of surface hydroxyl sites on mesoporous silica at natural abundance, thereby extending the concept of DNP surface-enhanced NMR spectroscopy to the 17O nuclide.

  6. The natural 13C abundance of plasma glucose is a useful biomarker of recent dietary caloric sweetener intake.

    PubMed

    Cook, Chad M; Alvig, Amy L; Liu, Yu Qiu David; Schoeller, Dale A

    2010-02-01

    There is a need for objective biomarkers of dietary intake, because self-reporting is often subject to bias. We tested the validity of a biomarker for the fraction of dietary carbohydrate (CHO) from cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup (C(4) sugars) using natural (13)C abundance of plasma glucose. In a randomized, single-blinded, crossover design, 5 participants consumed 3 weight-maintaining diets for 7 d, with a 2-wk washout between diet periods. Diets differed in the fraction of total CHO energy from C(4) sugars (5, 16, or 32%). During each diet period, blood samples were drawn at hours 0800 and 1600 on d 1, 3, and 5 and at 0800, 1000, 1200, 1400, and 1600 on d 7. The delta(13)C abundance of plasma glucose was analyzed via GC- isotope ratio MS. Within each diet period, delta(13)C abundance of the 0800 fasting glucose did not change from baseline with increasing time during a diet period; however, there was a strong positive correlation (R(2) = 0.89) between delta(13)C abundance of the glucose concentration at 1000 on d 7 and the percent of breakfast CHO from C(4) sugars. Also, delta(13)C abundance of the combined plasma glucose samples on d 7 demonstrated a strong positive correlation (R(2) = 0.90) with the percent of total daily CHO from C(4) sugars. The natural delta(13)C abundance of postprandial plasma glucose relative to dietary C(4) CHO content was a valid biomarker for contributions of C(4) caloric sweeteners from the previous meal. PMID:20018804

  7. The natural 13C abundance of plasma glucose is a useful biomarker of recent dietary caloric sweetener intake.

    PubMed

    Cook, Chad M; Alvig, Amy L; Liu, Yu Qiu David; Schoeller, Dale A

    2010-02-01

    There is a need for objective biomarkers of dietary intake, because self-reporting is often subject to bias. We tested the validity of a biomarker for the fraction of dietary carbohydrate (CHO) from cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup (C(4) sugars) using natural (13)C abundance of plasma glucose. In a randomized, single-blinded, crossover design, 5 participants consumed 3 weight-maintaining diets for 7 d, with a 2-wk washout between diet periods. Diets differed in the fraction of total CHO energy from C(4) sugars (5, 16, or 32%). During each diet period, blood samples were drawn at hours 0800 and 1600 on d 1, 3, and 5 and at 0800, 1000, 1200, 1400, and 1600 on d 7. The delta(13)C abundance of plasma glucose was analyzed via GC- isotope ratio MS. Within each diet period, delta(13)C abundance of the 0800 fasting glucose did not change from baseline with increasing time during a diet period; however, there was a strong positive correlation (R(2) = 0.89) between delta(13)C abundance of the glucose concentration at 1000 on d 7 and the percent of breakfast CHO from C(4) sugars. Also, delta(13)C abundance of the combined plasma glucose samples on d 7 demonstrated a strong positive correlation (R(2) = 0.90) with the percent of total daily CHO from C(4) sugars. The natural delta(13)C abundance of postprandial plasma glucose relative to dietary C(4) CHO content was a valid biomarker for contributions of C(4) caloric sweeteners from the previous meal.

  8. A novel filler for natural fiber polymer composites from cotton gin waste

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The natural fiber polymer composites market has significantly grown in the last decade. The majority of these composites are manufactured using wood flour as a principal component. The price and availability of quality wood flour is uncertain in several markets, therefore there is a great potential ...

  9. Effect of polymer electrolyte on the performance of natural dye sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adel, R.; Abdallah, T.; Moustafa, Y. M.; Al-sabagh, A. M.; Talaat, H.

    2015-10-01

    Polymer electrolyte based on polyacrylonitrile (PAN), Ethylene Carbonate (EC) and Acetonitrile (ACN) mixed with Potassium Iodide and Iodine in liquid and thin film forms were employed in natural dye sensitized solar cells (NDSSCs). Three natural dyes; black berry, hibiscus and rose are used as the sensitizing dye. The NDSSCs used, follow the configuration: FTO/TiO2/Natural Dye/Electrolyte/ Carbon/FTO. The liquid form polymer electrolyte with black berry natural dye gives an increase of 111% in short circuit photocurrent density (Jsc), 17.5% to open circuit voltage (Voc), fill factor of 0.57 ± 0.05 and three times increase in the conversion efficiency of 0.242 ± 0.012% compared to the iodine electrolyte.

  10. Increased seawater temperature increases the abundance and alters the structure of natural Vibrio populations associated with the coral Pocillopora damicornis

    PubMed Central

    Tout, Jessica; Siboni, Nachshon; Messer, Lauren F.; Garren, Melissa; Stocker, Roman; Webster, Nicole S.; Ralph, Peter J.; Seymour, Justin R.

    2015-01-01

    Rising seawater temperature associated with global climate change is a significant threat to coral health and is linked to increasing coral disease and pathogen-related bleaching events. We performed heat stress experiments with the coral Pocillopora damicornis, where temperature was increased to 31°C, consistent with the 2–3°C predicted increase in summer sea surface maxima. 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing revealed a large shift in the composition of the bacterial community at 31°C, with a notable increase in Vibrio, including known coral pathogens. To investigate the dynamics of the naturally occurring Vibrio community, we performed quantitative PCR targeting (i) the whole Vibrio community and (ii) the coral pathogen Vibrio coralliilyticus. At 31°C, Vibrio abundance increased by 2–3 orders of magnitude and V. coralliilyticus abundance increased by four orders of magnitude. Using a Vibrio-specific amplicon sequencing assay, we further demonstrated that the community composition shifted dramatically as a consequence of heat stress, with significant increases in the relative abundance of known coral pathogens. Our findings provide quantitative evidence that the abundance of potential coral pathogens increases within natural communities of coral-associated microbes as a consequence of rising seawater temperature and highlight the potential negative impacts of anthropogenic climate change on coral reef ecosystems. PMID:26042096

  11. Natural polymer crystals of hydrocarbons as models of prebiological organisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yushkin, N. P.

    1996-09-01

    Among solid hydrocarbons (bitumens) widely spread in the lithosphere, forms representing various degrees of molecular ordering, like globules, fibers, quasicrystals, fullerenes, etc., have been recently discovered. The most perfect ones are original fibrous, spiral and spherical crystals of kerite found in chamber pegmatities of Korosten granitoid massive in the Ukraine. The age of the pegmatites is 1,700 million years, they originated at a depth of 1.5-2 km. The kerite composition is C 491H 386O 87S(N). Kerite crystallization took place in a chamber of a pegmatite body in a steam-and-gas environment at T = 500 dash280°C and P = 20 MPa from hydrocarbon gases of igneous origin in the presence of catalysts. The fibrous kerite's structure and properties are very similar to those of simple organisms. Its chemical composition, for example, is nearly identical to that of a protein. The presence of a large number of minerals in association with fibrous kerite, including zeolite (natrolite) acting as a membrane, abundant release of hydrocarbon gases on heating, complex morphology and the presence of both internal and external actively growing surfaces account for a much more complex (in comparison with ionic inorganic crystals) "life" for fibrous kerite crystals and stimulate an evolution of various metabolic processes. The finding of hydrocarbon crystals with a composition, form and structure similar to living organisms is a convincing confirmation of the conception of "crystallization of life" that occurred under the same conditions as crystallization of minerals.

  12. Assessment of the natural variation of low abundant metabolic proteins in soybean seeds using proteomics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Using two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and mass spectrometry, we investigated the distribution of the low abundant proteins that are involved in soybean seed development in four wild and twelve cultivated soybean genotypes. We found proteomic variation of these proteins within and...

  13. Tackling Mg alloy corrosion by natural polymer coatings-A review.

    PubMed

    Heise, Svenja; Virtanen, Sannakaisa; Boccaccini, Aldo R

    2016-10-01

    The field of protective coatings for magnesium and its alloys (e.g., AZ31) using natural polymers is reviewed. Polymers utilized are broadly divided into polysaccharides and proteins. For both polymer classes examples are given focusing on coating processing and characterization. Several analysing methods reported in literature are summarized highlighting the different characterization approaches applied in different studies, which makes difficult a direct comparison of the outcomes. In most cases, the protective behavior of coatings was determined using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy or by assessing hydrogen evolution in different fluids. Mechanical tests and in vitro cell culture studies have been also carried out on selected coating systems. Overall, the results show the possibility of applying protective coatings based on natural polymers on magnesium and its alloys, however, in vivo investigations are scarce so that long-term results in relevant conditions are not yet available. A comparison with the use of synthetic polymers is presented and current challenges and areas for future research are discussed, highlighting the need for further investigations in the field, which should enable broadening the applications of Mg and Mg alloys in medicine. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A: 104A: 2628-2641, 2016.

  14. Natural-fiber-reinforced polymer composites in automotive applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holbery, James; Houston, Dan

    2006-11-01

    In the past decade, natural-fiber composites with thermoplastic and thermoset matrices have been embraced by European car manufacturers and suppliers for door panels, seat backs, headliners, package trays, dashboards, and interior parts. Natural fibers such as kenaf, hemp, flax, jute, and sisal offer such benefits as reductions in weight, cost, and CO2, less reliance on foreign oil sources, and recyclability. However, several major technical considerations must be addressed before the engineering, scientific, and commercial communities gain the confidence to enable wide-scale acceptance, particularly in exterior parts where a Class A surface finish is required. Challenges include the homogenization of the fiber's properties and a full understanding of the degree of polymerization and crystallization, adhesion between the fiber and matrix, moisture repellence, and flame-retardant properties, to name but a few.

  15. Flow and habitat effects on juvenile fish abundance in natural and altered flow regimes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Freeman, Mary C.; Bowen, Z.H.; Bovee, K.D.; Irwin, E.R.

    2001-01-01

    Conserving biological resources native to large river systems increasingly depends on how flow-regulated segments of these rivers are managed. Improving management will require a better understanding of linkages between river biota and temporal variability of flow and instream habitat. However, few studies have quantified responses of native fish populations to multiyear (>2 yr) patterns of hydrologic or habitat variability in flow-regulated systems. To provide these data, we quantified young-of-year (YOY) fish abundance during four years in relation to hydrologic and habitat variability in two segments of the Tallapoosa River in the southeastern United States. One segment had an unregulated flow regime, whereas the other was flow-regulated by a peak-load generating hydropower dam. We sampled fishes annually and explored how continuously recorded flow data and physical habitat simulation models (PHABSIM) for spring (April-June) and summer (July-August) preceding each sample explained fish abundances. Patterns of YOY abundance in relation to habitat availability (median area) and habitat persistence (longest period with habitat area continuously above the long-term median area) differed between unregulated and flow-regulated sites. At the unregulated site, YOY abundances were most frequently correlated with availability of shallow-slow habitat in summer (10 species) and persistence of shallow-slow and shallow-fast habitat in spring (nine species). Additionally, abundances were negatively correlated with 1-h maximum flow in summer (five species). At the flow-regulated site, YOY abundances were more frequently correlated with persistence of shallow-water habitats (four species in spring; six species in summer) than with habitat availability or magnitude of flow extremes. The associations of YOY with habitat persistence at the flow-regulated site corresponded to the effects of flow regulation on habitat patterns. Flow regulation reduced median flows during spring and

  16. Hybrid Polymer/UiO-66(Zr) and Polymer/NaY Fiber Sorbents for Mercaptan Removal from Natural Gas.

    PubMed

    Chen, Grace; Koros, William J; Jones, Christopher W

    2016-04-20

    Zeolite NaY and metal organic frameworks MIL-53(Al) and UiO-66(Zr) are spun with cellulose acetate (CA) polymer to create hybrid porous composite fibers for the selective adsorption of sulfur odorant compounds from pipeline natural gas. Odorant removal is desirable to limit corrosion associated with sulfur oxide production, thereby increasing lifetime in gas turbines used for electricity generation. In line with these goals, the performance of the hybrid fibers is evaluated on the basis of sulfur sorption capacity and selectivity, as well as fiber stability and regenerability, compared to their polymer-free sorbent counterparts. The capacities of the powder sorbents are also measured using various desorption temperatures to evaluate the potential for lower temperature, energy, and cost-efficient system operation. Both NaY/CA and UiO-66(Zr)/CA hybrid fibers are prepared with high sorbent loadings, and both have high capacities and selectivities for t-butyl mercaptan (TBM) odorant sorption from a model natural gas (NG), while being stable to multiple regeneration cycles. The different advantages and disadvantages of both types of fibers relative are discussed, with both offering the potential advantages of low pressure drop, rapid heat and mass transfer, and low energy requirements over traditional sulfur removal technologies such as hydrodesulfurization (HDS) or adsorption in a pellet packed beds.

  17. Hybrid Polymer/UiO-66(Zr) and Polymer/NaY Fiber Sorbents for Mercaptan Removal from Natural Gas.

    PubMed

    Chen, Grace; Koros, William J; Jones, Christopher W

    2016-04-20

    Zeolite NaY and metal organic frameworks MIL-53(Al) and UiO-66(Zr) are spun with cellulose acetate (CA) polymer to create hybrid porous composite fibers for the selective adsorption of sulfur odorant compounds from pipeline natural gas. Odorant removal is desirable to limit corrosion associated with sulfur oxide production, thereby increasing lifetime in gas turbines used for electricity generation. In line with these goals, the performance of the hybrid fibers is evaluated on the basis of sulfur sorption capacity and selectivity, as well as fiber stability and regenerability, compared to their polymer-free sorbent counterparts. The capacities of the powder sorbents are also measured using various desorption temperatures to evaluate the potential for lower temperature, energy, and cost-efficient system operation. Both NaY/CA and UiO-66(Zr)/CA hybrid fibers are prepared with high sorbent loadings, and both have high capacities and selectivities for t-butyl mercaptan (TBM) odorant sorption from a model natural gas (NG), while being stable to multiple regeneration cycles. The different advantages and disadvantages of both types of fibers relative are discussed, with both offering the potential advantages of low pressure drop, rapid heat and mass transfer, and low energy requirements over traditional sulfur removal technologies such as hydrodesulfurization (HDS) or adsorption in a pellet packed beds. PMID:27010604

  18. Partitioning Respiration Between Plant and Microbial Sources Using Natural Abundance Stable Carbon Isotopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dawson, T. E.; Tu, K. P.

    2009-12-01

    Partitioning plant and microbial respiration is important for understanding the mechanistic basis of ecosystem respiration, as each can respond to changes in environmental conditions in different ways and at different timescales. In theory, natural abundance stable C isotopes can allow source partitioning when the isotopic difference between the sources can be resolved. The longstanding notion is that such differences do not exist, yet field measurements to support this conclusion are rare. The question remains as to how much isotopic difference exists between the plant and microbial respiration and whether or not this difference is sufficient for partitioning. We addressed this question by measuring the C isotope ratios (13C/12C) of plant, microbial, and whole ecosystem respiration from three contrasting ecosystems in California. We found significant variation in the 13C/12C ratios between plant and microbial sources. However, isotopic mass balance was not observed in more than half the cases. When isotopic mass balance was observed, the largest isotopic differences were always between CO2 evolved during leaf respiration and SOC decomposition, with leaf respiration more depleted by 1-8 per mil. Within plants, the leaf respiration was more depleted than rhizosphere respiration by 2-6 per mil. Among microbial sources, litter decomposition was more depleted than SOC decomposition by 1-5 per mil. The 13C/12C ratio of bulk C and respired CO2 exhibited similar trends, but bulk C values were clearly not a good surrogate for the 13C/12C ratios of respired CO2. Based on the 13C/12C ratios of respired CO2, belowground respiration accounted for 25% in the redwood forest, 37% in the grassland and 84% in the pine forest. Belowground respiration was further partitioned between rhizosphere, litter and SOC decomposition. Each contributed nearly equal amounts in the redwood forest (30/40/30) whereas litter respiration dominated in the grassland (20/70/10) and pine forest (15

  19. Polymers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tucker, David C.

    1986-01-01

    Presents an open-ended experiment which has students exploring polymer chemistry and reverse osmosis. This activity involves construction of a polymer membrane, use of it in a simple osmosis experiment, and application of its principles in solving a science-technology-society problem. (ML)

  20. Nature's starships. I. Observed abundances and relative frequencies of amino acids in meteorites

    SciTech Connect

    Cobb, Alyssa K.; Pudritz, Ralph E. E-mail: pudritz@physics.mcmaster.ca

    2014-03-10

    The class of meteorites called carbonaceous chondrites are examples of material from the solar system which have been relatively unchanged from the time of their initial formation. These meteorites have been classified according to the temperatures and physical conditions of their parent planetesimals. We collate available data on amino acid abundance in these meteorites and plot the concentrations of different amino acids for each meteorite within various meteorite subclasses. We plot average concentrations for various amino acids across meteorites separated by subclass and petrologic type. We see a predominance in the abundance and variety of amino acids in CM2 and CR2 meteorites. The range in temperature corresponding to these subclasses indicates high degrees of aqueous alteration, suggesting aqueous synthesis of amino acids. Within the CM2 and CR2 subclasses, we identify trends in relative frequencies of amino acids to investigate how common amino acids are as a function of their chemical complexity. These two trends (total abundance and relative frequencies) can be used to constrain formation parameters of amino acids within planetesimals. Our organization of the data supports an onion shell model for the temperature structure of planetesimals. The least altered meteorites (type 3) and their amino acids originated near cooler surface regions. The most active amino acid synthesis likely took place at intermediate depths (type 2). The most altered materials (type 1) originated furthest toward parent body cores. This region is likely too hot to either favor amino acid synthesis or for amino acids to be retained after synthesis.

  1. Chitin and chitosan as multipurpose natural polymers for groundwater arsenic removal and AS2O3 delivery in tumor therapy.

    PubMed

    Da Sacco, Letizia; Masotti, Andrea

    2010-01-01

    Chitin and chitosan are natural polysaccharide polymers. These polymers have been used in several agricultural, food protection and nutraceutical applications. Moreover, chitin and chitosan have been also used in biomedical and biotechnological applications as drug delivery systems or in pharmaceutical formulations. So far, there are only few studies dealing with arsenic (As) removal from groundwater using chitin or chitosan and no evidence of the use of these natural polymers for arsenic trioxide (As(2)O(3)) delivery in tumor therapy. Here we suggest that chitin and/or chitosan might have the right properties to be employed as efficient polymers for such applications. Besides, nanotechnology offers suitable tools for the fabrication of novel nanostructured materials of natural origin. Since different nanostructured materials have already been employed successfully in various multidisciplinary fields, we expect that the integration of nanotechnology and natural polymer chemistry will further lead to innovative applications for environment and medicine.

  2. Effect of epoxidation on 30% poly(methyl methacrylate)-grafted natural rubber polymer electrolytes

    SciTech Connect

    Nazir, Khuzaimah; Aziz, Ahmad Fairoz; Adam, Nurul Ilham; Yahya, Muhd Zu Azhan; Ali, Ab Malik Marwan

    2015-08-28

    Epoxidized 30% poly(methyl methacrylate)-grafted natural rubber (EMG 30) as a polymer host in solid polymer electrolytes (SPEs) has been investigated. EMG30 was synthesized via performicepoxidation method onto 30% poly(methyl methacrylate)-grafted natural rubber (MG30) and the formations of epoxy group were discussed. The EMG30 were characterized by proton nuclear magnetic resonance ({sup 1}HNMR) to investigate their chemical structure and differential scanning calorimeter to determine their crystallinity. A new peak in {sup 1}HNMR spectra (2.71 ppm) confirmed the appearance of epoxy group. SPE based on EMG30 doped with 40 wt% LiCF{sub 3}SO{sub 3} show the highest conductivity. The complexation between EMG30 and LiCF{sub 3}SO{sub 3} were confirmed by attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR)

  3. Nitrate dynamics in natural plants: insights based on the concentration and natural isotope abundances of tissue nitrate

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xue-Yan; Koba, Keisuke; Makabe, Akiko; Liu, Cong-Qiang

    2014-01-01

    The dynamics of nitrate (NO−3), a major nitrogen (N) source for natural plants, has been studied mostly through experimental N addition, enzymatic assay, isotope labeling, and genetic expression. However, artificial N supply may not reasonably reflect the N strategies in natural plants because NO−3 uptake and reduction may vary with external N availability. Due to abrupt application and short operation time, field N addition, and isotopic labeling hinder the elucidation of in situ NO−3-use mechanisms. The concentration and natural isotopes of tissue NO−3 can offer insights into the plant NO−3 sources and dynamics in a natural context. Furthermore, they facilitate the exploration of plant NO−3 utilization and its interaction with N pollution and ecosystem N cycles without disturbing the N pools. The present study was conducted to review the application of the denitrifier method for concentration and isotope analyses of NO−3 in plants. Moreover, this study highlights the utility and advantages of these parameters in interpreting NO−3 sources and dynamics in natural plants. We summarize the major sources and reduction processes of NO−3 in plants, and discuss the implications of NO−3 concentration in plant tissues based on existing data. Particular emphasis was laid on the regulation of soil NO−3 and plant ecophysiological functions in interspecific and intra-plant NO−3 variations. We introduce N and O isotope systematics of NO−3 in plants and discuss the principles and feasibilities of using isotopic enrichment and fractionation factors; the correlation between concentration and isotopes (N and O isotopes: δ18O and Δ17O); and isotope mass-balance calculations to constrain sources and reduction of NO−3 in possible scenarios for natural plants are deliberated. Finally, we offer a preliminary framework of intraplant δ18O-NO−3 variation, and summarize the uncertainties in using tissue NO−3 parameters to interpret plant NO−3 utilization

  4. Natural expansion and experimental manipulation of seagrass ( Zostera spp.) abundance and the response of infaunal invertebrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, Paul G.

    1987-06-01

    A study of an expanding seagrass bed on the south-west coast of British Columbia, Canada involved documentation and explanation of the pattern of expansion of the vegetation as well as documentation and experimental investigation of the accompanying changes in the distribution of infaunal invertebrates. Expansion followed a major environmental change, improved water clarity initiated in 1969 when a causeway blocked access to the site for silty Fraser River water. The original eelgrass ( Zostera marina) bed expanded landward over 30 m year -1, probably causing more and more water to be retained in the bed at low tide and thus improving its own habitat. More rapid expansion occurred from 1979-1983 after Z.japonica colonized at the landward edge of the eelgrass bed and in a separate intertidal area. Expansion ceased around 1983 coincident with, but probably independent of, further construction. Burrowing shrimp ( Callianassa californiensis) decreased in abundance between 1977 and 1984 in areas where the two seagrasses colonized. Short-term experiment over one summer and fall showed that removal of all shoots allowed adult shrimp and tube worms to colonize the sediment while addition of shoots of Z. japonica by transplanting caused temporary decreases in shrimp abundance. After a few weeks an established shrimp population destroyed the transplants. Among reasonable alternate hypotheses for the decline in Callianassa, the effect of sediment texture can be eliminated, but either direct negative effects of seagrass, i.e. inhibition of the burrowing of adult shrimp or of settlement of juveniles, or indirect effects, i.e. the harboring of more predators of shrimp in seagrass beds, deserve further study.

  5. Tensile properties of glass/natural jute fibre-reinforced polymer bars for concrete reinforcement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, J. W.; Lee, S. K.; Kim, K. W.; Park, C. G.

    2015-12-01

    The tensile performance of glass/natural jute fibre-reinforced polymer (FRP) bar, intended for concrete reinforcement was evaluated as a function of volume fraction of natural jute fibre. Natural jute fibre, mixed at a ratio of 7:3 with vinyl ester, was surface-treated with a silane coupling agent and used to replaced glass fibre in the composite in volume fractions of 0%, 30%, 50%, 70%, and 100%. The tensile load-displacement curve showed nearly linear elastic behaviour up to 50% natural jute fibre, but was partially nonlinear at a proportion of 70%. However, the glass/natural jute FRP bars prepared using 100% natural jute fibre showed linear elastic behaviour. Tensile strength decreased as the natural jute fibre volume fraction increased because the tensile strength of natural jute fibre is much lower than that of glass fibre (about 1:8.65). The degree of reduction was not proportional to the natural jute fibre volume fraction due to the low density of natural jute fibre (1/2 that of glass fibre). Thus, as the mix proportion of natural jute fibre increased, the amount (wt%) and number of fibres used also increased.

  6. New method for estimating bacterial cell abundances in natural samples by use of sublimation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glavin, Daniel P.; Cleaves, H. James; Schubert, Michael; Aubrey, Andrew; Bada, Jeffrey L.

    2004-01-01

    We have developed a new method based on the sublimation of adenine from Escherichia coli to estimate bacterial cell counts in natural samples. To demonstrate this technique, several types of natural samples, including beach sand, seawater, deep-sea sediment, and two soil samples from the Atacama Desert, were heated to a temperature of 500 degrees C for several seconds under reduced pressure. The sublimate was collected on a cold finger, and the amount of adenine released from the samples was then determined by high-performance liquid chromatography with UV absorbance detection. Based on the total amount of adenine recovered from DNA and RNA in these samples, we estimated bacterial cell counts ranging from approximately 10(5) to 10(9) E. coli cell equivalents per gram. For most of these samples, the sublimation-based cell counts were in agreement with total bacterial counts obtained by traditional DAPI (4,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole) staining.

  7. New method for estimating bacterial cell abundances in natural samples by use of sublimation.

    PubMed

    Glavin, Daniel P; Cleaves, H James; Schubert, Michael; Aubrey, Andrew; Bada, Jeffrey L

    2004-10-01

    We have developed a new method based on the sublimation of adenine from Escherichia coli to estimate bacterial cell counts in natural samples. To demonstrate this technique, several types of natural samples, including beach sand, seawater, deep-sea sediment, and two soil samples from the Atacama Desert, were heated to a temperature of 500 degrees C for several seconds under reduced pressure. The sublimate was collected on a cold finger, and the amount of adenine released from the samples was then determined by high-performance liquid chromatography with UV absorbance detection. Based on the total amount of adenine recovered from DNA and RNA in these samples, we estimated bacterial cell counts ranging from approximately 10(5) to 10(9) E. coli cell equivalents per gram. For most of these samples, the sublimation-based cell counts were in agreement with total bacterial counts obtained by traditional DAPI (4,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole) staining.

  8. Inferring the nature of anthropogenic threats from long-term abundance records.

    PubMed

    Shoemaker, Kevin T; Akçakaya, H Resit

    2015-02-01

    Diagnosing the processes that threaten species persistence is critical for recovery planning and risk forecasting. Dominant threats are typically inferred by experts on the basis of a patchwork of informal methods. Transparent, quantitative diagnostic tools would contribute much-needed consistency, objectivity, and rigor to the process of diagnosing anthropogenic threats. Long-term census records, available for an increasingly large and diverse set of taxa, may exhibit characteristic signatures of specific threatening processes and thereby provide information for threat diagnosis. We developed a flexible Bayesian framework for diagnosing threats on the basis of long-term census records and diverse ancillary sources of information. We tested this framework with simulated data from artificial populations subjected to varying degrees of exploitation and habitat loss and several real-world abundance time series for which threatening processes are relatively well understood: bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) and Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) (exploitation) and Red Grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica) and Eurasian Skylark (Alauda arvensis) (habitat loss). Our method correctly identified the process driving population decline for over 90% of time series simulated under moderate to severe threat scenarios. Successful identification of threats approached 100% for severe exploitation and habitat loss scenarios. Our method identified threats less successfully when threatening processes were weak and when populations were simultaneously affected by multiple threats. Our method selected the presumed true threat model for all real-world case studies, although results were somewhat ambiguous in the case of the Eurasian Skylark. In the latter case, incorporation of an ancillary source of information (records of land-use change) increased the weight assigned to the presumed true model from 70% to 92%, illustrating the value of the proposed framework in bringing diverse sources of

  9. Inferring the nature of anthropogenic threats from long-term abundance records.

    PubMed

    Shoemaker, Kevin T; Akçakaya, H Resit

    2015-02-01

    Diagnosing the processes that threaten species persistence is critical for recovery planning and risk forecasting. Dominant threats are typically inferred by experts on the basis of a patchwork of informal methods. Transparent, quantitative diagnostic tools would contribute much-needed consistency, objectivity, and rigor to the process of diagnosing anthropogenic threats. Long-term census records, available for an increasingly large and diverse set of taxa, may exhibit characteristic signatures of specific threatening processes and thereby provide information for threat diagnosis. We developed a flexible Bayesian framework for diagnosing threats on the basis of long-term census records and diverse ancillary sources of information. We tested this framework with simulated data from artificial populations subjected to varying degrees of exploitation and habitat loss and several real-world abundance time series for which threatening processes are relatively well understood: bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) and Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) (exploitation) and Red Grouse (Lagopus lagopus scotica) and Eurasian Skylark (Alauda arvensis) (habitat loss). Our method correctly identified the process driving population decline for over 90% of time series simulated under moderate to severe threat scenarios. Successful identification of threats approached 100% for severe exploitation and habitat loss scenarios. Our method identified threats less successfully when threatening processes were weak and when populations were simultaneously affected by multiple threats. Our method selected the presumed true threat model for all real-world case studies, although results were somewhat ambiguous in the case of the Eurasian Skylark. In the latter case, incorporation of an ancillary source of information (records of land-use change) increased the weight assigned to the presumed true model from 70% to 92%, illustrating the value of the proposed framework in bringing diverse sources of

  10. Determination of the natural abundance δ15N of taurine by gas chromatography-isotope ratio measurement mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Tea, Illa; Antheaume, Ingrid; Besnard, Jorick; Robins, Richard J

    2010-12-15

    The measurement of the nitrogen isotope ratio of taurine (2-aminoethanesulphonic acid) in biological samples has a large number of potential applications. Taurine is a small water-soluble molecule which is notoriously difficult to analyze due to its polarity and functionality. A method is described which allows the determination of the natural abundance δ(15)N values of taurine and structural analogues, such as 3-amino-1-propanesulphonic acid (APSA), by isotope ratio mass spectrometry interfaced to gas chromatography (GC-irm-MS). The one-step protocol exploits the simultaneous derivatization of both functionalities of these aminosulphonic acids by reaction with triethylorthoacetate (TEOA). Conditions have been established which ensure quantitative reaction thus avoiding any nitrogen isotope fractionation during derivatization and workup. The differences in the δ(15)N values of derivatized and non-derivatized taurine and APSA all fall within the working range of 0.4‰ (-0.02 to 0.39‰). When applied to four sources of taurine with various δ(15)N values, the method achieved excellent reproducibility and accuracy. The optimized method enables the determination of the natural abundance δ(15)N values of taurine over the concentration range 1.5-7.84 µmol.mL(-1) in samples of biological origin.

  11. Afforestation impacts microbial biomass and its natural (13)C and (15)N abundance in soil aggregates in central China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Junjun; Zhang, Qian; Yang, Fan; Lei, Yao; Zhang, Quanfa; Cheng, Xiaoli

    2016-10-15

    We investigated soil microbial biomass and its natural abundance of δ(13)C and δ(15)N in aggregates (>2000μm, 250-2000μm, 53-250μm and <53μm) of afforested (implementing woodland and shrubland plantations) soils, adjacent croplands and open area (i.e., control) in the Danjiangkou Reservoir area of central China. The afforested soils averaged higher microbial biomass carbon (MBC) and nitrogen (MBN) levels in all aggregates than in open area and cropland, with higher microbial biomass in micro-aggregates (<250μm) than in macro-aggregates (>2000μm). The δ(13)C of soil microbial biomass was more enriched in woodland soils than in other land use types, while δ(15)N of soil microbial biomass was more enriched compared with that of organic soil in all land use types. The δ(13)C and δ(15)N of microbial biomass were positively correlated with the δ(13)C and δ(15)N of organic soil across aggregates and land use types, whereas the (13)C and (15)N enrichment of microbial biomass exhibited linear decreases with the corresponding C:N ratio of organic soil. Our results suggest that shifts in the natural (13)C and (15)N abundance of microbial biomass reflect changes in the stabilization and turnover of soil organic matter (SOM) and thereby imply that afforestation can greatly impact SOM accumulation over the long-term.

  12. Natural 15N- and 13C-abundance as indicators of forest nitrogen status and soil carbon dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Garten Jr, Charles T; Hanson, Paul J; Todd Jr, Donald E; Lu, Benwhea Bonnie; Brice, Deanne Jane

    2007-09-01

    This book highlights new and emerging uses of stable isotope analysis in a variety of ecological disciplines. While the use of natural abundance isotopes in ecological research is now relatively standard, new techniques and ways of interpreting patterns are developing rapidly. The second edition of this book provides a thorough, up-to-date examination of these methods of research. As part of the Ecological Methods and Concepts series which provides the latest information on experimental techniques in ecology, this book looks at a wide range of techniques that use natural abundance isotopes to: {sm_bullet} follow whole ecosystem element cycling {sm_bullet} understand processes of soil organic matter formation {sm_bullet} follow the movement of water in whole watersheds {sm_bullet} understand the effects of pollution in both terrestrial and aquatic environments {sm_bullet} study extreme systems such as hydrothermal vents {sm_bullet}follow migrating organisms In each case, the book explains the background to the methodology, looks at the underlying principles and assumptions, and outlines the potential limitations and pitfalls. Stable Isotopes in Ecology and Environmental Science is an ideal resource for both ecologists who are new to isotopic analysis, and more experienced isotope ecologists interested in innovative techniques and pioneering new uses.

  13. A thalium-doped sodium iodide well counter for radioactive tracer applications with naturally-abundant 40K

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parker, Andrew J.; Boxall, Colin; Joyce, Malcolm J.; Schotanus, Paul

    2013-09-01

    The use of a thallium-doped sodium-iodide well-type scintillation detector for the assay of the low-activity radioisotope 40K, in open-source potassium chloride aqueous solutions, is described. The hazards, safety concerns and radiowaste generation associated with using open-source radioactive isotopes can present significant difficulties, the use of hot cells and escalated costs in radioanalytical laboratory research. A solution to this is the use of low-hazard alternatives that mimic the migration and dispersion characteristics of notable fission products (in this case 137Cs). The use of NaI(Tl) as a detection medium for naturally-abundant levels of 40K in a range of media is widespread, but the use of 40K as a radioactive tracer has not been reported. The use of such low-activity sources is often complicated by the ability to detect them efficiently. In this paper a scintillator detector designed to detect the naturally-abundant 40K present in potassium chloride in tracer applications is described. Examples of the use of potassium chloride as a tracer are given in the context of ion exchange and electrochemical migration studies, and comparisons in performance are drawn from literature with hyper pure germanium semiconductor detectors, which are more commonly utilised detectors in high-resolution counting applications.

  14. A New Method for Estimating Bacterial Abundances in Natural Samples using Sublimation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glavin, Daniel P.; Cleaves, H. James; Schubert, Michael; Aubrey, Andrew; Bada, Jeffrey L.

    2004-01-01

    We have developed a new method based on the sublimation of adenine from Escherichia coli to estimate bacterial cell counts in natural samples. To demonstrate this technique, several types of natural samples including beach sand, seawater, deep-sea sediment, and two soil samples from the Atacama Desert were heated to a temperature of 500 C for several seconds under reduced pressure. The sublimate was collected on a cold finger and the amount of adenine released from the samples then determined by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with UV absorbance detection. Based on the total amount of adenine recovered from DNA and RNA in these samples, we estimated bacterial cell counts ranging from approx. l0(exp 5) to l0(exp 9) E. coli cell equivalents per gram. For most of these samples, the sublimation based cell counts were in agreement with total bacterial counts obtained by traditional DAPI staining. The simplicity and robustness of the sublimation technique compared to the DAPI staining method makes this approach particularly attractive for use by spacecraft instrumentation. NASA is currently planning to send a lander to Mars in 2009 in order to assess whether or not organic compounds, especially those that might be associated with life, are present in Martian surface samples. Based on our analyses of the Atacama Desert soil samples, several million bacterial cells per gam of Martian soil should be detectable using this sublimation technique.

  15. Flexural retrofitting of reinforced concrete structures using Green Natural Fiber Reinforced Polymer plates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cervantes, Ignacio

    An experimental study will be carried out to determine the suitability of Green Natural Fiber Reinforced Polymer plates (GNFRP) manufactured with hemp fibers, with the purpose of using them as structural materials for the flexural strengthening of reinforced concrete (RC) beams. Four identical RC beams, 96 inches long, are tested for the investigation, three control beams and one test beam. The first three beams are used as references; one unreinforced, one with one layer of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer (CFRP), one with two layers of CFRP, and one with n layers of the proposed, environmental-friendly, GNFRP plates. The goal is to determine the number of GNFRP layers needed to match the strength reached with one layer of CFRP and once matched, assess if the system is less expensive than CFRP strengthening, if this is the case, this strengthening system could be an alternative to the currently used, expensive CFRP systems.

  16. Photovoltaic Cells involving Nonconjugated Conductive Polymer, Iodine-doped cis-Polyisoprene (Natural Rubber)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jaju, S.; Thakur, M.

    2014-03-01

    Photovoltaic cells have been fabricated using titanium dioxide/doped cis-polyisoprene/carbon on ITO glass-substrates. Photocurrents and photo-voltages for different intensities of light (from a white light bulb, emission at 300-700 nm) have been measured. Use of the iodine-doped nonconjugated conductive polymer film (absorption ~ 250 to 700 nm) has led to significant enhancement of photocurrent compared to previous reports which included undoped polymer in a different cell-structure. A maximum photocurrent of about 0.20 mA was observed for a light intensity of ~ 5 mW/cm2. The maximum photo-voltage as observed was about 0.70 V for the same light intensity. Natural rubber being inexpensive these cells may provide cheaper alternatives to other reported cell structures.

  17. Squalene: a naturally abundant mammalian skin secretion and long distance tick-attractant (Acari: Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Yoder, J A; Stevens, B W; Crouch, K C

    1999-07-01

    Squalene is a naturally occurring lipid on mammalian skin and is an attractant to the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum (L.). In this study, we compared squalene to the standard tick-attractants, benzaldehyde, isobutyric acid, methyl salicylate, nonanoic acid, and o-nitrophenol identified as active ingredients of tick aggregation-attachment pheromones and determined its effectiveness in field and laboratory settings at varying distances. Squalene was detected from 1/4 m greater than the standard tick attractants, attracted a greater percentage of ticks (75 compared with 0-43%) and featured a rapid response time (< 30 min). Thus, squalene contributes more to the tick's ability to locate hosts at greater distances than aggregation-attachment pheromones. These results have important implications for improving tick monitoring and control programs by adding squalene as a supplement to existing attractant baits. PMID:10467784

  18. δ15N natural abundance in permafrost soil indicates impact of fire on nitrogen cycle.

    PubMed

    Conen, Franz; Yakutin, Mikhail V; Puchnin, Alexander N; Leifeld, Jens; Alewell, Christine

    2011-03-15

    The impact of fire on the nitrogen (N) cycle of natural ecosystems is arguable. Here we report and interpret an observation from boreal ecosystems in the Lena River basin, Sakha Republic (Yakutia), Russian Federation. Different types of permafrost soil (0-30 cm depth) were sampled along transects (60-150 m length) from the forest edge towards the centre of four separate thermokarst depressions under grassland. The average values of δ(15)N were remarkably similar within three transects, but differed systematically between them. Three findings point towards fire being the cause of the observed pattern. First, the spatial extent of systematic differences in soil δ(15)N coincides with the extent of typical fire scars in the region. Second, soil enrichment in (15)N is larger in the proximity of settlements, where fire is generally more frequent than in more remote places. Third, there is a significant positive correlation between δ(15)N values and the ratio of black C to total N. These findings point towards fire having a marked impact on soil δ(15)N and, accordingly, on the N cycle of this cold and dry ecosystem. PMID:21290453

  19. Exploration of the nature of a unique natural polymer-based thermosensitive hydrogel.

    PubMed

    Lu, Shanling; Yang, Yuhong; Yao, Jinrong; Shao, Zhengzhong; Chen, Xin

    2016-01-14

    The chitosan (CS)/β-glycerol phosphate (GP) system is a heat induced gelling system with a promising potential application, such as an injectable biomedical material. Unlike most thermosensitive gelling systems, the CS/GP system is only partially reversible. That is once the hydrogel is fully matured, it only softens but cannot go back to its initial liquid state when cooled down. Here, we perform both the small and large amplitude oscillatory shear (SAOS and LAOS) tests on the fully matured CS/GP hydrogel samples at a variety of temperatures within the cooling process. The purpose of such tests is to investigate the structural change of the hydrogel network and thus to understand the possible gelation mechanism of this unique thermosensitive hydrogel. From the LAOS results and the further analysis with the Chebyshev expansion method, it shows that the CS/GP hydrogel is composed of a colloidal network dominated by hydrophobic interactions at high temperature, and gradually turns into a flexible network dominated by hydrogen bonding when the temperature goes down. Therefore, we may conclude that LOAS is a powerful tool to study the nonlinear behaviour of a polymer system that is closely related to its structure, and as a practical example, we achieve a clearer vision on the gelation mechanism of the unique CS/GP thermosensitive hydrogel on the basis of considerable previous studies and assumptions in this laboratory and other research groups.

  20. Investigation of Polymer Resin/Fiber Compatibility in Natural Fiber Reinforced Composite Automotive Materials

    SciTech Connect

    Fifield, Leonard S.; Huang, Cheng; Simmons, Kevin L.

    2010-01-01

    Natural fibers represent a lower density and potentially lower cost alternative to glass fibers for reinforcement of polymers in automotive composites. The high specific modulus and strength of bast fibers make them an attractive option to replace glass not only in non-structural automotive components, but also in semi-structural and structural components. Significant barriers to insertion of bast fibers in the fiber reinforced automotive composite market include the high moisture uptake of this lignocellulosic material relative to glass and the weak inherent interface between natural fibers and automotive resins. This work seeks to improve the moisture uptake and resin interfacing properties of natural fibers through improved fundamental understanding of fiber physiochemical architecture and development of tailored fiber surface modification strategies.

  1. Natural landscape and stream segment attributes influencing the distribution and relative abundance of riverine smallmouth bass in Missouri

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brewer, S.K.; Rabeni, C.F.; Sowa, S.P.; Annis, G.

    2007-01-01

    Protecting and restoring fish populations on a regional basis are most effective if the multiscale factors responsible for the relative quality of a fishery are known. We spatially linked Missouri's statewide historical fish collections to environmental features in a geographic information system, which was used as a basis for modeling the importance of landscape and stream segment features in supporting a population of smallmouth bass Micropterus dolomieu. Decision tree analyses were used to develop probability-based models to predict statewide occurrence and within-range relative abundances. We were able to identify the range of smallmouth bass throughout Missouri and the probability of occurrence within that range by using a few broad landscape variables: the percentage of coarse-textured soils in the watershed, watershed relief, and the percentage of soils with low permeability in the watershed. The within-range relative abundance model included both landscape and stream segment variables. As with the statewide probability of occurrence model, soil permeability was particularly significant. The predicted relative abundance of smallmouth bass in stream segments containing low percentages of permeable soils was further influenced by channel gradient, stream size, spring-flow volume, and local slope. Assessment of model accuracy with an independent data set showed good concordance. A conceptual framework involving naturally occurring factors that affect smallmouth bass potential is presented as a comparative model for assessing transferability to other geographic areas and for studying potential land use and biotic effects. We also identify the benefits, caveats, and data requirements necessary to improve predictions and promote ecological understanding. ?? Copyright by the American Fisheries Society 2007.

  2. Upgrading low-quality natural gas by means of highly performing polymer membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Stern, S.A.

    1995-04-01

    The objective of the present study is to assess the potential usefulness of membrane separation processes for removing acid gases (CO{sub 2} and H{sub 2}S) from low-quality natural gas. Nonporous {open_quotes}dense{close_quotes} (homogeneous) membranes made from new, highly gas-selective polymers are being evaluated for this purpose. The project comprises gas permeability and separation measurements with CH{sub 4}/CO{sub 2} and CH{sub 4}/CO{sub 2}/H{sub 2}S mixtures having compositions in ranges found in low-quality natural gas. Process design studies and economic evaluations are also being made to determine the cost of upgrading low-quality natural gas with the most promising membranes. Until recently, the membranes used in this study were made from new types of polyimides synthesized in our laboratory. The polyimide membranes were found to exhibit a very high CO{sub 2}/CH{sub 4} selectivity but a relatively low H{sub 2}S/CH{sub 4} selectivity. Therefore, different types of polymers that exhibit a high H{sub 2}S/CH{sub 4} selectivity are also being evaluated.

  3. Concentration-response data on toxicity of pyrolysis gases from some natural and synthetic polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hilado, C. J.; Huttlinger, N. V.

    1978-01-01

    Concentration-response data are presented on the toxic effects of the pyrolysis gases from some natural and synthetic polymers, using the toxicity screening test method developed at the University of San Francisco. The pyrolysis gases from wool, red oak, Douglas fir, polycaprolactam, polyether sulfone, polyaryl sulfone, and polyphenylene sulfide appeared to exhibit the concentration-response relationships commonly encountered in toxicology. Carbon monoxide seemed to be an important toxicant in the pyrolysis gases from red oak, Douglas fir, and polycaprolactam, but did not appear to have been the principal toxicant in the pyrolysis gases from polyether sulfone and polyphenylene sulfide.

  4. Time-dependent extinction rate and species abundance in a tangled-nature model of biological evolution.

    PubMed

    Hall, Matt; Christensen, Kim; di Collobiano, Simone A; Jensen, Henrik Jeldtoft

    2002-07-01

    We present a model of evolutionary ecology consisting of a web of interacting individuals, a tangle-nature model. The reproduction rate of individuals characterized by their genome depends on the composition of the population in genotype space. Ecological features such as the taxonomy and the macroevolutionary mode of the dynamics are emergent properties. The macrodynamics exhibit intermittent two-mode switching with a gradually decreasing extinction rate. The generated ecologies become gradually better adapted as well as more complex in a collective sense. The form of the species abundance curve compares well with observed functional forms. The model's error threshold can be understood in terms of the characteristics of the two dynamical modes of the system.

  5. Effects of weed cover composition on insect pest and natural enemy abundance in a field of Dracaena marginata (Asparagales: Asparagaceae) in Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Sadof, Clifford S; Linkimer, Mildred; Hidalgo, Eduardo; Casanoves, Fernando; Gibson, Kevin; Benjamin, Tamara J

    2014-04-01

    Weeds and their influence on pest and natural enemy populations were studied on a commercial ornamental farm during 2009 in the Atlantic Zone of Costa Rica. A baseline survey of the entire production plot was conducted in February, along a 5 by 5 m grid to characterize and map initial weed communities of plants, cicadellids, katydids, and armored scales. In total, 50 plant species from 21 families were found. Seven weed treatments were established to determine how weed manipulations would affect communities of our targeted pests and natural enemies. These treatments were selected based on reported effects of specific weed cover on herbivorous insects and natural enemies, or by their use by growers as a cover crop. Treatments ranged from weed-free to being completely covered with endemic species of weeds. Although some weed treatments changed pest abundances, responses differed among arthropod pests, with the strongest effects observed for Caldwelliola and Empoasca leafhoppers. Removal of all weeds increased the abundance of Empoasca, whereas leaving mostly cyperacaeous weeds increased the abundance of Caldwelliola. Weed manipulations had no effect on the abundance of katydid and scale populations. No weed treatment reduced the abundance of all three of the target pests. Differential responses of the two leafhopper species to the same weed treatments support hypotheses, suggesting that noncrop plants can alter the abundance of pests through their effects on arthropod host finding and acceptance, as well as their impacts on natural enemies.

  6. Effects of weed cover composition on insect pest and natural enemy abundance in a field of Dracaena marginata (Asparagales: Asparagaceae) in Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Sadof, Clifford S; Linkimer, Mildred; Hidalgo, Eduardo; Casanoves, Fernando; Gibson, Kevin; Benjamin, Tamara J

    2014-04-01

    Weeds and their influence on pest and natural enemy populations were studied on a commercial ornamental farm during 2009 in the Atlantic Zone of Costa Rica. A baseline survey of the entire production plot was conducted in February, along a 5 by 5 m grid to characterize and map initial weed communities of plants, cicadellids, katydids, and armored scales. In total, 50 plant species from 21 families were found. Seven weed treatments were established to determine how weed manipulations would affect communities of our targeted pests and natural enemies. These treatments were selected based on reported effects of specific weed cover on herbivorous insects and natural enemies, or by their use by growers as a cover crop. Treatments ranged from weed-free to being completely covered with endemic species of weeds. Although some weed treatments changed pest abundances, responses differed among arthropod pests, with the strongest effects observed for Caldwelliola and Empoasca leafhoppers. Removal of all weeds increased the abundance of Empoasca, whereas leaving mostly cyperacaeous weeds increased the abundance of Caldwelliola. Weed manipulations had no effect on the abundance of katydid and scale populations. No weed treatment reduced the abundance of all three of the target pests. Differential responses of the two leafhopper species to the same weed treatments support hypotheses, suggesting that noncrop plants can alter the abundance of pests through their effects on arthropod host finding and acceptance, as well as their impacts on natural enemies. PMID:24517852

  7. Influence of natural humic acids and synthetic phenolic polymers on fibrinolysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klöcking, Hans-Peter

    The influence of synthetic and natural phenolic polymers on the release of plasminogen activator was studied in an isolated, perfused, vascular preparation (pig ear). Of the tested synthetic phenolic polymers, the oxidation products of caffeic acid (KOP) and 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (3,4-DHPOP), at a concentration of 50 µg/ml perfusate, were able to increase the plasminogen activator activity by 70%. The oxidation products of chlorogenic acid (CHOP), hydrocaffeic acid (HYKOP), pyrogallol (PYROP) and gallic acid (GALOP), at the same concentration, exerted no influence on the release of plasminogen activator. Of the naturally occurring humic acids, the influence of sodium humate was within the same order of magnitude as KOP and 3,4-DHPOP. Ammonium humate was able to increase the plasminogen activator release only at a concentration of 100 µg/ml perfusate. In rats, the t-PA activity increased after i.v. application of 10 mg/kg of KOP, Na-HS or NH4-HS.

  8. Spectroscopic Evidence of Anthropogenic Compounds Extraction from Polymers by Fluorescent Dissolved Organic Matter in Natural Water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miranda, M.; Trojzuck, A.; Voss, D.; Gassmann, S.; Zielinski, O.

    2016-04-01

    FDOM is one of the most important carriers of anthropogenic compounds in natural waters. It can combine with environmental contaminants and polymers to form diverse chemical structures. To this end, here a microfluidic chip was designed for the analysis of these changes in fluorescent dissolved organic matter (FDOM) fingerprints due to thermal treatment and varying time intervals of exposure. Excitation Emission Matrix Spectroscopy (EEMS) approach was utilized to detect and identify the inherent compounds in sampled FDOM. Strong direct correlations were founded, Spearman rank correlation values (ρ = 0.85 at α = 0.1, n = 4) and linear correlation R2 = 0.8359 were noted between thermal treatment pattern 2 and fluorescence intensity of samples. Materials, acrylic based glue and cyclic olefin copolymer (COC) polymer, used to design the microfluidic sensor were determined to possess unique spectral features in the ultraviolet to green spectrum using EEMS. The study therefore provides an insight on methods to identify contaminants in natural waters. This underlines the potential of optical sensors providing measurements at fast intervals, enabling environmental monitoring.

  9. Robust and biodegradable polymer of cassava starch and modified natural rubber.

    PubMed

    Riyajan, Sa-Ad

    2015-12-10

    The application of starch based materials for packaging purposes has attracted significant interest because they are both cheap and renewable resources. The study investigated the preparation and properties of a novel biopolymer sheet produced from a blend of maleated epoxidized natural rubber (MENR) and natural rubber-g-cassava starch (NR-g-CSt). The water resistance, toluene resistance and elongation at break of the polymer blend were enhanced after the addition of the MENR compared to pristine NR-g-CSt. The maximum tensile strength and thermal stability of the NR-g-CSt/MENR blend were found in the 100:50 NR-g-CSt:MENR blend. The novel films demonstrated good biodegradability in soil. PMID:26428124

  10. Robust and biodegradable polymer of cassava starch and modified natural rubber.

    PubMed

    Riyajan, Sa-Ad

    2015-12-10

    The application of starch based materials for packaging purposes has attracted significant interest because they are both cheap and renewable resources. The study investigated the preparation and properties of a novel biopolymer sheet produced from a blend of maleated epoxidized natural rubber (MENR) and natural rubber-g-cassava starch (NR-g-CSt). The water resistance, toluene resistance and elongation at break of the polymer blend were enhanced after the addition of the MENR compared to pristine NR-g-CSt. The maximum tensile strength and thermal stability of the NR-g-CSt/MENR blend were found in the 100:50 NR-g-CSt:MENR blend. The novel films demonstrated good biodegradability in soil.

  11. Female offspring desertion and male-only care increase with natural and experimental increase in food abundance

    PubMed Central

    Eldegard, Katrine; Sonerud, Geir A.

    2009-01-01

    In species with biparental care, one parent may escape the costs of parental care by deserting and leaving the partner to care for the offspring alone. A number of theoretical papers have suggested a link between uniparental offspring desertion and ecological factors, but empirical evidence is scarce. We investigated the relationship between uniparental desertion and food abundance in a natural population of Tengmalm's owl Aegolius funereus, both by means of a 5-year observational study and a 1-year experimental study. Parents and offspring were fitted with radio-transmitters in order to reveal the parental care strategy (i.e. care or desert) of individual parents, and to keep track of the broods post-fledging. We found that 70 per cent of the females from non-experimental nests deserted, while their partner continued to care for their joint offspring alone. Desertion rate was positively related to natural prey population densities and body reserves of the male partner. In response to food supplementation, a larger proportion of the females deserted, and females deserted the offspring at an earlier age. Offspring survival during the post-fledging period tended to be lower in deserted than in non-deserted broods. We argue that the most important benefit of deserting may be remating (sequential polyandry). PMID:19324835

  12. Female offspring desertion and male-only care increase with natural and experimental increase in food abundance.

    PubMed

    Eldegard, Katrine; Sonerud, Geir A

    2009-05-01

    In species with biparental care, one parent may escape the costs of parental care by deserting and leaving the partner to care for the offspring alone. A number of theoretical papers have suggested a link between uniparental offspring desertion and ecological factors, but empirical evidence is scarce. We investigated the relationship between uniparental desertion and food abundance in a natural population of Tengmalm's owl Aegolius funereus, both by means of a 5-year observational study and a 1-year experimental study. Parents and offspring were fitted with radio-transmitters in order to reveal the parental care strategy (i.e. care or desert) of individual parents, and to keep track of the broods post-fledging. We found that 70 per cent of the females from non-experimental nests deserted, while their partner continued to care for their joint offspring alone. Desertion rate was positively related to natural prey population densities and body reserves of the male partner. In response to food supplementation, a larger proportion of the females deserted, and females deserted the offspring at an earlier age. Offspring survival during the post-fledging period tended to be lower in deserted than in non-deserted broods. We argue that the most important benefit of deserting may be remating (sequential polyandry). PMID:19324835

  13. Biodegradability of PP/HMSPP and natural and synthetic polymers blends in function of gamma irradiation degradation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardoso, Elisabeth C. L.; Scagliusi, Sandra R.; Lima, Luis F. C. P.; Bueno, Nelson R.; Brant, Antonio J. C.; Parra, Duclerc F.; Lugão, Ademar B.

    2014-01-01

    Polymers are used for numerous applications in different industrial segments, generating enormous quantities of discarding in the environment. Polymeric materials composites account for an estimated from 20 to 30% total volume of solid waste. Polypropylene (PP) undergoes crosslinking and extensive main chain scissions when submitted to ionizing irradiation; as one of the most widely used linear hydrocarbon polymers, PP, made from cheap petrochemical feed stocks, shows easy processing leading it to a comprehensive list of finished products. Consequently, there is accumulation in the environment, at 25 million tons per year rate, since polymeric products are not easily consumed by microorganisms. PP polymers are very bio-resistant due to involvement of only carbon atoms in main chain with no hydrolysable functional group. Several possibilities have been considered to minimize the environmental impact caused by non-degradable plastics, subjecting them to: physical, chemical and biological degradation or combination of all these due to the presence of moisture, air, temperature, light, high energy radiation or microorganisms. There are three main classes of biodegradable polymers: synthetic polymers, natural polymers and blends of polymers in which one or more components are readily consumed by microorganisms. This work aims to biodegradability investigation of a PP/HMSPP (high melt strength polypropylene) blended with sugarcane bagasse, PHB (poly-hydroxy-butyrate) and PLA (poly-lactic acid), both synthetic polymers, at a 10% level, subjected to gamma radiation at 50, 100, 150 and 200 kGy doses. Characterization will comprise IR, DSC, TGA, OIT and Laboratory Soil Burial Test (LSBT).

  14. LOW-COST COMPOSITES IN VEHICLE MANUFACTURE - Natural-fiber-reinforced polymer composites in automotive applications.

    SciTech Connect

    Holbery, Jim; Houston, Dan

    2006-11-01

    In the last decade, natural fiber composites have experienced rapid growth in the European automotive market, and this trend appears to be global in scale, provided the cost and performance is justified against competing technologies. However, mass reduction, recyclability, and performance requirements can be met today by competing systems such as injection-molded unreinforced thermoplastics; natural fiber composites will continue to expand their role in automotive applications only if such technical challenges as moisture stability, fiber-polymer interface compatibility, and consistent, repeatable fiber sources are available to supply automotive manufacturers. Efforts underway by Tier I and II automotive suppliers to explore hybrid glass-natural fiber systems, as well as applications that exploit such capabilities as natural fiber sound dampening characteristics, could very well have far-reaching effects. In addition, the current development underway of bio-based resins such as Polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) biodegradable polyesters and bio-based polyols could provide fully bio-based composite options to future automotive designers. In short, the development of the natural fiber composite market would make a positive impact on farmers and small business owners on a global scale, reduce US reliance on foreign oil, improve environmental quality through the development of a sustainable resource supply chain, and achieve a better CO2 balance over the vehicle?s lifetime with near-zero net greenhouse gas emissions.

  15. Polymers All Around You!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gertz, Susan

    Background information on natural polymers, synthetic polymers, and the properties of polymers is presented as an introduction to this curriculum guide. Details are provided on the use of polymer products in consumer goods, polymer recycling, polymer densities, the making of a polymer such as GLUEP, polyvinyl alcohol, dissolving plastics, polymers…

  16. Abundance, size and polymer composition of marine microplastics ≥10μm in the Atlantic Ocean and their modelled vertical distribution.

    PubMed

    Enders, Kristina; Lenz, Robin; Stedmon, Colin A; Nielsen, Torkel G

    2015-11-15

    We studied abundance, size and polymer type of microplastic down to 10μm along a transect from the European Coast to the North Atlantic Subtropical Gyre (NASG) using an underway intake filtration technique and Raman micro-spectrometry. Concentrations ranged from 13 to 501itemsm(-3). Highest concentrations were observed at the European coast, decreasing towards mid-Atlantic waters but elevated in the western NASG. We observed highest numbers among particles in the 10-20μm size fraction, whereas the total volume was highest in the 50-80μm range. Based on a numerical model size-dependent depth profiles of polyethylene microspheres in a range from 10-1000μm were calculated and show a strong dispersal throughout the surface mixed layer for sizes smaller than 200μm. From model and field study results we conclude that small microplastic is ubiquitously distributed over the ocean surface layer and has a lower residence time than larger plastic debris in this compartment. PMID:26454631

  17. Abundance, size and polymer composition of marine microplastics ≥10μm in the Atlantic Ocean and their modelled vertical distribution.

    PubMed

    Enders, Kristina; Lenz, Robin; Stedmon, Colin A; Nielsen, Torkel G

    2015-11-15

    We studied abundance, size and polymer type of microplastic down to 10μm along a transect from the European Coast to the North Atlantic Subtropical Gyre (NASG) using an underway intake filtration technique and Raman micro-spectrometry. Concentrations ranged from 13 to 501itemsm(-3). Highest concentrations were observed at the European coast, decreasing towards mid-Atlantic waters but elevated in the western NASG. We observed highest numbers among particles in the 10-20μm size fraction, whereas the total volume was highest in the 50-80μm range. Based on a numerical model size-dependent depth profiles of polyethylene microspheres in a range from 10-1000μm were calculated and show a strong dispersal throughout the surface mixed layer for sizes smaller than 200μm. From model and field study results we conclude that small microplastic is ubiquitously distributed over the ocean surface layer and has a lower residence time than larger plastic debris in this compartment.

  18. Peroxidases Bound to the Growing Lignin Polymer Produce Natural Like Extracellular Lignin in a Cell Culture of Norway Spruce

    PubMed Central

    Warinowski, Tino; Koutaniemi, Sanna; Kärkönen, Anna; Sundberg, Ilari; Toikka, Merja; Simola, Liisa Kaarina; Kilpeläinen, Ilkka; Teeri, Teemu H.

    2016-01-01

    Lignin, an important component of plant cell walls, is a polymer of monolignols derived from the phenylpropanoid pathway. Monolignols are oxidized in the cell wall by oxidative enzymes (peroxidases and/or laccases) to radicals, which then couple with the growing lignin polymer. We have investigated the characteristics of the polymerization reaction by producing lignin polymers in vitro using different oxidative enzymes and analyzing the structures formed with NMR. The ability of the enzymes to oxidize high-molecular-weight compounds was tested using cytochrome c as a substrate. The results support an idea that lignin structure is largely determined by the concentration ratios of the monolignol (coniferyl alcohol) and polymer radicals involved in the coupling reaction. High rate of the lignin polymer oxidation compared to monolignol oxidation leads to a natural-like structure. The high relative rate can be achieved by an open active site of the oxidative enzyme, close proximity of the enzyme with the polymeric substrate or simply by high enzymatic activity that consumes monolignols rapidly. Monolignols, which are oxidized efficiently, can be seen as competitive inhibitors of polymer oxidation. Our results indicate that, at least in a Norway spruce (Picea abies L. Karst.) cell culture, a group of apoplastic, polymer-oxidizing peroxidases bind to the lignin polymer and are responsible for production of natural-like lignin in cell suspension cultures in vivo, and also in vitro. The peroxidases bound to the extracellular lignin had the highest ability to bind to various cell wall polymers in vitro. Extracellular lignin contains pectin-type sugars, making them possible attachment points for these cationic peroxidases. PMID:27803704

  19. Factors Driving the Abundance of Ixodes ricinus Ticks and the Prevalence of Zoonotic I. ricinus-Borne Pathogens in Natural Foci

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-de-Mera, Isabel G.; Acevedo, Pelayo; Gortázar, Christian; de la Fuente, José

    2012-01-01

    Environmental factors may drive tick ecology and therefore tick-borne pathogen (TBP) epidemiology, which determines the risk to animals and humans of becoming infected by TBPs. For this reason, the aim of this study was to analyze the influence of environmental factors on the abundance of immature-stage Ixodes ricinus ticks and on the prevalence of two zoonotic I. ricinus-borne pathogens in natural foci of endemicity. I. ricinus abundance was measured at nine sites in the northern Iberian Peninsula by dragging the vegetation with a cotton flannelette, and ungulate abundance was measured by means of dung counts. In addition to ungulate abundance, data on variables related to spatial location, climate, and soil were gathered from the study sites. I. ricinus adults, nymphs, and larvae were collected from the vegetation, and a representative subsample of I. ricinus nymphs from each study site was analyzed by PCR for the detection of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato and Anaplasma phagocytophilum DNA. Mean prevalences of these pathogens were 4.0% ± 1.8% and 20.5% ± 3.7%, respectively. Statistical analyses confirmed the influence of spatial factors, climate, and ungulate abundance on I. ricinus larva abundance, while nymph abundance was related only to climate. Interestingly, cattle abundance rather than deer abundance was the main driver of B. burgdorferi sensu lato and A. phagocytophilum prevalence in I. ricinus nymphs in the study sites, where both domestic and wild ungulates coexist. The increasing abundance of cattle seems to increase the risk of other hosts becoming infected by A. phagocytophilum, while reducing the risk of being infected by B. burgdorferi sensu lato. Controlling ticks in cattle in areas where they coexist with wild ungulates would be more effective for TBP control than reducing ungulate abundance. PMID:22286986

  20. Water hyacinth: a possible alternative rate retarding natural polymer used in sustained release tablet design

    PubMed Central

    Khatun, Sabera; Sutradhar, Kumar B.

    2014-01-01

    In recent years natural polymers have been widely used because of their effectiveness and availability over synthetic polymers. In this present investigation matrix tablets of Metformin hydrochloride were formulated using Water hyacinth powder and its rate retardant activity was studied. Tablets were prepared using wet granulation method with 8% starch as granulating agent and 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30% of Water hyacinth powder to the drug. In preformulation study, angle of repose, Carr's Index and Hausner ratio were calculated. Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC), and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) studies were performed and no interactions were found between drug and excipients. Weight variation, friability, hardness, thickness, diameter, and in vitro release study were performed with the prepared matrix tablets. Dissolution studies were conducted using USP type II apparatus at a speed of 100 rpm at 37°C ± 0.5 temperature for 8 h. Though all the formulations comply with both BP and USP requirements, formulation F-1 (5% of Water hyacinth) was the best fitted formula. The drug release patterns were explained in different kinetic models such as Zero order, First order, Higuchi, Hixson Crowell, and Korsmeyer-Peppas equations. The current investigation implies that Water hyacinth has the potential to be used as a rate-retarding agent in sustained release drug formulations. PMID:24966835

  1. Abundance of non-native crabs in intertidal habitats of New England with natural and artificial structure.

    PubMed

    Lovely, Christina M; O'Connor, Nancy J; Judge, Michael L

    2015-01-01

    Marine habitats containing complex physical structure (e.g., crevices) can provide shelter from predation for benthic invertebrates. To examine effects of natural and artificial structure on the abundance of intertidal juvenile crabs, 2 experiments were conducted in Kingston Bay, Massachusetts, USA, from July to September, 2012. In the first experiment, structure was manipulated in a two-factor design that was placed in the high intertidal for 3 one-week periods to test for both substrate type (sand vs. rock) and the presence or absence of artificial structure (mesh grow-out bags used in aquaculture, ∼0.5 m(2) with 62 mm(2) mesh openings). The Asian shore crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus, and small individuals of the green crab, Carcinus maenas, were observed only in the treatments of rocks and mesh bag plus rocks. Most green crabs were small (<6 mm in carapace width) whereas H. sanguineus occurred in a wide range of sizes. In the second experiment, 3 levels of oyster-shell treatments were established using grow-out bags placed on a muddy sand substrate in the low intertidal zone: mesh grow-out bags without shells, grow-out bags with oyster shells, and grow-out bags containing live oysters. Replicate bags were deployed weekly for 7 weeks in a randomized complete block design. All crabs collected in the bags were juvenile C. maenas (1-15 mm carapace width), and numbers of crabs differed 6-fold among treatments, with most crabs present in bags with live oysters (29.5 ± 10.6 m(-2) [mean ± S.D.]) and fewest in bags without shells (4.9 ± 3.7 m(-2)). Both C. maenas and H. sanguineus occurred in habitats with natural structure (cobble rocks). The attraction of juvenile C. maenas to artificial structure consisting of plastic mesh bags containing both oyster shells and living oysters could potentially impact oyster aquaculture operations.

  2. Abundance of non-native crabs in intertidal habitats of New England with natural and artificial structure.

    PubMed

    Lovely, Christina M; O'Connor, Nancy J; Judge, Michael L

    2015-01-01

    Marine habitats containing complex physical structure (e.g., crevices) can provide shelter from predation for benthic invertebrates. To examine effects of natural and artificial structure on the abundance of intertidal juvenile crabs, 2 experiments were conducted in Kingston Bay, Massachusetts, USA, from July to September, 2012. In the first experiment, structure was manipulated in a two-factor design that was placed in the high intertidal for 3 one-week periods to test for both substrate type (sand vs. rock) and the presence or absence of artificial structure (mesh grow-out bags used in aquaculture, ∼0.5 m(2) with 62 mm(2) mesh openings). The Asian shore crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus, and small individuals of the green crab, Carcinus maenas, were observed only in the treatments of rocks and mesh bag plus rocks. Most green crabs were small (<6 mm in carapace width) whereas H. sanguineus occurred in a wide range of sizes. In the second experiment, 3 levels of oyster-shell treatments were established using grow-out bags placed on a muddy sand substrate in the low intertidal zone: mesh grow-out bags without shells, grow-out bags with oyster shells, and grow-out bags containing live oysters. Replicate bags were deployed weekly for 7 weeks in a randomized complete block design. All crabs collected in the bags were juvenile C. maenas (1-15 mm carapace width), and numbers of crabs differed 6-fold among treatments, with most crabs present in bags with live oysters (29.5 ± 10.6 m(-2) [mean ± S.D.]) and fewest in bags without shells (4.9 ± 3.7 m(-2)). Both C. maenas and H. sanguineus occurred in habitats with natural structure (cobble rocks). The attraction of juvenile C. maenas to artificial structure consisting of plastic mesh bags containing both oyster shells and living oysters could potentially impact oyster aquaculture operations. PMID:26401456

  3. Abundance of non-native crabs in intertidal habitats of New England with natural and artificial structure

    PubMed Central

    Lovely, Christina M.; Judge, Michael L.

    2015-01-01

    Marine habitats containing complex physical structure (e.g., crevices) can provide shelter from predation for benthic invertebrates. To examine effects of natural and artificial structure on the abundance of intertidal juvenile crabs, 2 experiments were conducted in Kingston Bay, Massachusetts, USA, from July to September, 2012. In the first experiment, structure was manipulated in a two-factor design that was placed in the high intertidal for 3 one-week periods to test for both substrate type (sand vs. rock) and the presence or absence of artificial structure (mesh grow-out bags used in aquaculture, ∼0.5 m2 with 62 mm2 mesh openings). The Asian shore crab, Hemigrapsus sanguineus, and small individuals of the green crab, Carcinus maenas, were observed only in the treatments of rocks and mesh bag plus rocks. Most green crabs were small (<6 mm in carapace width) whereas H. sanguineus occurred in a wide range of sizes. In the second experiment, 3 levels of oyster-shell treatments were established using grow-out bags placed on a muddy sand substrate in the low intertidal zone: mesh grow-out bags without shells, grow-out bags with oyster shells, and grow-out bags containing live oysters. Replicate bags were deployed weekly for 7 weeks in a randomized complete block design. All crabs collected in the bags were juvenile C. maenas (1–15 mm carapace width), and numbers of crabs differed 6-fold among treatments, with most crabs present in bags with live oysters (29.5 ± 10.6 m−2 [mean ± S.D.]) and fewest in bags without shells (4.9 ± 3.7 m−2). Both C. maenas and H. sanguineus occurred in habitats with natural structure (cobble rocks). The attraction of juvenile C. maenas to artificial structure consisting of plastic mesh bags containing both oyster shells and living oysters could potentially impact oyster aquaculture operations. PMID:26401456

  4. Molecular identification and relative abundance of cryptic Lophodermium species in natural populations of Scots pine, Pinus sylvestris L.

    PubMed

    Reignoux, Sabrina N A; Green, Sarah; Ennos, Richard A

    2014-01-01

    The multi-locus phylogenetic species recognition approach and population genetic analysis of Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP) markers were used to delineate Lophodermium taxa inhabiting needles of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) in native pinewoods within Scotland. These analyses revealed three major lineages corresponding to the morphological species Lophodermium seditiosum and Lophodermium conigenum, fruiting on broken branches, and Lophodermium pinastri, fruiting on naturally fallen needles. Within L. pinastri three well supported sister clades were found representing cryptic taxa designated L. pinastri I, L. pinastri II, and L. pinastri III. Significant differences in mean growth rate in culture were found among the cryptic taxa. Taxon-specific primers based on ITS sequences were designed and used to classify over 500 Lophodermium isolates, derived from fallen needles of P. sylvestris in three Scottish and one French pinewood site, into the three L. pinastri cryptic taxa. Highly significant differences in the relative abundance of the three taxa were found among the Scottish pinewood sites, and between the French and all of the Scottish sites.

  5. Studies of minute quantities of natural abundance molecules using 2D heteronuclear correlation spectroscopy under 100kHz MAS

    SciTech Connect

    Nishiyama, Y.; Kobayashi, T.; Malon, M.; Singappuli-Arachchige, D.; Slowing, I. I.; Pruski, M.

    2015-02-16

    Two-dimensional 1H{13C} heteronuclear correlation solid-state NMR spectra of naturally abundant solid materials are presented, acquired using the 0.75-mm magic angle spinning (MAS) probe at spinning rates up to 100 kHz. In spite of the miniscule sample volume (290 nL), high-quality HSQC-type spectra of bulk samples as well as surface-bound molecules can be obtained within hours of experimental time. The experiments are compared with those carried out at 40 kHz MAS using a 1.6-mm probe, which offered higher overall sensitivity due to a larger rotor volume. The benefits of ultrafast MAS in such experiments include superior resolution in 1H dimension without resorting to 1H–1H homonuclear RF decoupling, easy optimization, and applicability to mass-limited samples. As a result, the HMQC spectra of surface-bound species can be also acquired under 100 kHz MAS, although the dephasing of transverse magnetization has significant effect on the efficiency transfer under MAS alone.

  6. Natural Abundance 43Ca NMR as a Tool for Exploring Calcium Biomineralization: Renal Stone Formation and Growth

    SciTech Connect

    Bowers, Geoffrey M.; Kirkpatrick, Robert J.

    2011-12-07

    Renal stone diseases are a global health issue with little effective therapeutic recourse aside from surgery and shock-wave lithotripsy, primarily because the fundamental chemical mechanisms behind calcium biomineralization are poorly understood. In this work, we show that natural abundance 43Ca NMR at 21.1 T is an effective means to probe the molecular-level Ca2+ structure in oxalate-based kidney stones. We find that the 43Ca NMR resonance of an authentic oxalate-based kidney stone cannot be explained by a single pure phase of any common Ca2+-bearing stone mineral. Combined with XRD results, our findings suggest an altered calcium oxalate monohydrate-like Ca2+ coordination environment for some fraction of Ca2+ in our sample. The evidence is consistent with existing literature hypothesizing that nonoxalate organic material interacts directly with Ca2+ at stone surfaces and is the primary driver of renal stone aggregation and growth. Our findings show that 43Ca NMR spectroscopy may provide unique and crucial insight into the fundamental chemistry of kidney stone formation, growth, and the role organic molecules play in these processes.

  7. Studies of minute quantities of natural abundance molecules using 2D heteronuclear correlation spectroscopy under 100kHz MAS

    DOE PAGES

    Nishiyama, Y.; Kobayashi, T.; Malon, M.; Singappuli-Arachchige, D.; Slowing, I. I.; Pruski, M.

    2015-02-16

    Two-dimensional 1H{13C} heteronuclear correlation solid-state NMR spectra of naturally abundant solid materials are presented, acquired using the 0.75-mm magic angle spinning (MAS) probe at spinning rates up to 100 kHz. In spite of the miniscule sample volume (290 nL), high-quality HSQC-type spectra of bulk samples as well as surface-bound molecules can be obtained within hours of experimental time. The experiments are compared with those carried out at 40 kHz MAS using a 1.6-mm probe, which offered higher overall sensitivity due to a larger rotor volume. The benefits of ultrafast MAS in such experiments include superior resolution in 1H dimensionmore » without resorting to 1H–1H homonuclear RF decoupling, easy optimization, and applicability to mass-limited samples. As a result, the HMQC spectra of surface-bound species can be also acquired under 100 kHz MAS, although the dephasing of transverse magnetization has significant effect on the efficiency transfer under MAS alone.« less

  8. Molecular characterization of dissolved organic matter in glacial ice: coupling natural abundance 1H NMR and fluorescence spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Pautler, Brent G; Woods, Gwen C; Dubnick, Ashley; Simpson, André J; Sharp, Martin J; Fitzsimons, Sean J; Simpson, Myrna J

    2012-04-01

    Glaciers and ice sheets are the second largest freshwater reservoir in the global hydrologic cycle, and the onset of global climate warming has necessitated an assessment of their contributions to sea-level rise and the potential release of nutrients to nearby aquatic environments. In particular, the release of dissolved organic matter (DOM) from glacier melt could stimulate microbial activity in both glacial ecosystems and adjacent watersheds, but this would largely depend on the composition of the material released. Using fluorescence and (1)H NMR spectroscopy, we characterize DOM at its natural abundance in unaltered samples from a number of glaciers that differ in geographic location, thermal regime, and sample depth. Parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC) modeling of DOM fluorophores identifies components in the ice that are predominantly proteinaceous in character, while (1)H NMR spectroscopy reveals a mixture of small molecules that likely originate from native microbes. Spectrofluorescence also reveals a terrestrial contribution that was below the detection limits of NMR; however, (1)H nuclei from levoglucosan was identified in Arctic glacier ice samples. This study suggests that the bulk of the DOM from these glaciers is a mixture of biologically labile molecules derived from microbes.

  9. Hemostatic potential of natural/synthetic polymer based hydrogels crosslinked by gamma radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barba, Bin Jeremiah D.; Tranquilan-Aranilla, Charito; Abad, Lucille V.

    2016-01-01

    Various raw materials and hydrogels prepared from their combination were assessed for hemostatic capability using swine whole blood clotting analysis. Initial screening showed efficient coagulative properties from κ-carrageenan and its carboxymethylated form, and α-chitosan, even compared to commercial products like QuikClot Zeolite Powder. Blending natural and synthetic polymers formed into hydrogels using gamma radiation produced materials with improved properties. KC and CMKC hydrogels were found to have the lowest blood clotting index in granulated form and had the higher capacity for platelet adhesion in foamed form compared to GelFoam. Possible mechanisms involved in the evident thrombogenicity of the materials include adsorption of platelets and related proteins that aid in platelet activation (primary hemostasis), absorption of water to concentrate protein factors that control the coagulation cascade, contact activation by its negatively charged surface and the formation of gel-blood clots.

  10. Dental Applications of Natural-Origin Polymers in Hard and Soft Tissue Engineering.

    PubMed

    Jazayeri, Hossein E; Fahmy, Mina D; Razavi, Mehdi; Stein, Brett E; Nowman, Aatif; Masri, Radi M; Tayebi, Lobat

    2016-08-01

    Clinical advances in the treatment of dentoalveolar defects continue to evolve with the introduction of new innovations in regenerative medicine and tissue bioengineering. Recent developments in tissue engineering are aimed at safely and effectively regenerating a damaged or necrotic area by replenishing its cells and increasing surrounding gene expression. Various techniques have successfully given rise to porous scaffolds being used by clinicians to treat the defect and initiate the repair process. Tissue reconstruction using bioengineered scaffolds is advantageous over traditional autografting, since it prevents the instigation of pain and donor site morbidity while ultimately creating both the environment and machinery needed to induce cell proliferation, migration, and reattachment within the affected area. This review article aims to describe and review the available literature regarding the regenerative capacity of natural polymers used for the treatment of dentoalveolar defects. The repair mechanisms, advantages of protein and polysaccharide derivatives, and the potential of stem cell therapy are discussed.

  11. Efficacy of chitosan and other natural polymers in removing COD, TSS, heavy metals and pahs from municipal wastewater at Deer Island, Massachusetts. Technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Murcott, S.; Harleman, D.R.F.

    1992-10-01

    A series of tests was conducted at the Deer Island Primary Treatment Plant during the spring and summer of 1992 to determine the efficacy of chitosan and other natural polymers as coagulants, coagulant aids and flocculents in wastewater treatment. Prior to this undertaking, as part of the MIT Investigation of Chemically Enhanced Primary Treatment at the MWRA Project, the efficacy of metal salts and synthetic polymers had been studied at Deer Island. Those tests provided the standard against which to measure the viability of natural polymer use in municipal wastewater treatment. The major conclusions of the chitosan and other natural polymers study for Deer Island wastewater are included.

  12. Natural-abundance stable carbon isotopes of small-subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rRNA) from Guaymas Basin (Mexico)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacGregor, B. J.; Mendlovitz, H.; Albert, D.; Teske, A. P.

    2012-12-01

    Small-subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rRNA) is a phylogenetically informative molecule found in all species. Because it is poorly preserved in most environments, it is a useful marker for active microbial populations. We are using the natural-abundance stable carbon isotopic composition of specific microbial groups to help identify the carbon substrates contributing to microbial biomass in a variety of marine environments. At Guaymas Basin, hydrothermal fluids interact with abundant sedimentary organic carbon to produce natural gas and petroleum. Where this reaches the sediment surface, it can support dense patches of seafloor life, including Beggiatoa mats. We report here on the stable carbon isotopic composition of SSU rRNA from a Beggiatoa mat transect, a cold background site, a warm site with high oil concentration, and a second Beggiatoa mat. The central part of the transect mat overlay the steepest temperature gradient, and was visually dominated by orange Beggiatoa. This was fringed by white Beggiatoa mat and bare, but still warm, sediment. Methane concentrations were saturating beneath the orange and white mats and at the oily site, lower beneath bare sediment, and below detection at the background site. Our initial hypotheses were that rRNA isotopic composition would be strongly influenced by methane supply, and that archaeal rRNA might be lighter than bacterial due to contributions from methanogens and anaerobic methane oxidizers. We used biotin-labeled oligonucleotides to capture Bacterial and Archaeal SSU rRNA for isotopic determination. Background-site rRNA was isotopically heaviest, and bacterial RNA from below 2 cm at the oily site was lightest, consistent with control by methane. Within the transect mat, however, the pattern was more complicated; at some sediment depths, rRNA from the mat periphery was isotopically lightest. Part of this may be due to the spatially and temporally variable paths followed by hydrothermal fluid, which can include horizontal

  13. Acceleration of Natural-Abundance Solid-State MAS NMR Measurements on Bone by Paramagnetic Relaxation from Gadolinium-DTPA

    PubMed Central

    Mroue, Kamal H.; Zhang, Rongchun; Zhu, Peizhi; McNerny, Erin; Kohn, David H.; Morris, Michael D.; Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy

    2014-01-01

    Reducing the data collection time without affecting the signal intensity and spectral resolution is one of the major challenges for the widespread application of multidimensional nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, especially in experiments conducted on complex heterogeneous biological systems such as bone. In most of these experiments, the NMR data collection time is ultimately governed by the proton spin-lattice relaxation times (T1). For over two decades, gadolinium(III)-DTPA (Gd-DTPA, DTPA = Diethylenetriamine pentaacetic acid) has been one of the most widely used contrast-enhancement agents in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In this study, we demonstrate that Gd-DTPA can also be effectively used to enhance the longitudinal relaxation rates of protons in solid-state NMR experiments conducted on bone without significant line-broadening and chemical-shift-perturbation side effects. Using bovine cortical bone samples incubated in different concentrations of Gd-DTPA complex, the 1H T1 values were calculated from data collected by 1H spin-inversion recovery method detected in natural-abundance 13C cross-polarization magic angle spinning (CPMAS) NMR experiments. Our results reveal that the 1H T1 values can be successfully reduced by a factor of 3.5 using as low as 10 mM Gd-DTPA without reducing the spectral resolution and thus enabling faster data acquisition of the 13C CPMAS spectra. These results obtained from 13C-detected CPMAS experiments were further confirmed using 1H-detected ultrafast MAS experiments on Gd-DTPA doped bone samples. This approach considerably improves the signal-to-noise ratio per unit time of NMR experiments applied to bone samples by reducing the experimental time required to acquire the same number of scans. PMID:24881032

  14. Using natural abundance radiocarbon to trace the flux of petrocarbon to the seafloor following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

    PubMed

    Chanton, Jeffrey; Zhao, Tingting; Rosenheim, Brad E; Joye, Samantha; Bosman, Samantha; Brunner, Charlotte; Yeager, Kevin M; Diercks, Arne R; Hollander, David

    2015-01-20

    In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon accident released 4.6–6.0 × 10(11) grams or 4.1 to 4.6 million barrels of fossil petroleum derived carbon (petrocarbon) as oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Natural abundance radiocarbon measurements on surface sediment organic matter in a 2.4 × 10(10) m(2) deep-water region surrounding the spill site indicate the deposition of a fossil-carbon containing layer that included 1.6 to 2.6 × 10(10) grams of oil-derived carbon. This quantity represents between 0.5 to 9.1% of the released petrocarbon, with a best estimate of 3.0–4.9%. These values may be lower limit estimates of the fraction of the oil that was deposited on the seafloor because they focus on a limited mostly deep-water area of the Gulf, include a conservative estimate of thickness of the depositional layer, and use an average background or prespill radiocarbon value for sedimentary organic carbon that produces a conservative value. A similar approach using hopane tracer estimated that 4–31% of 2 million barrels of oil that stayed in the deep sea settled on the bottom. Converting that to a percentage of the total oil that entered into the environment (to which we normalized our estimate) converts this range to 1.8 to 14.4%. Although extrapolated over a larger area, our independent estimate produced similar values.

  15. Plant and Soil Natural Abundance delta-15N: Indicators of Nitrogen Cycling in the Catskill Mountains, New York, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Templer, P. H.; Lovett, G. M.; Weathers, K.; Arthur, M. A.

    2002-12-01

    We examined the potential use of natural abundance 15N of plants and soils as an indicator of forest nitrogen (N) cycling rates within the Catskill Mountains, NY. These watersheds receive among the highest rates of N deposition in the northeastern United States and are beginning to show signs of N saturation. Many studies have shown a link between increased N cycling rates and 15N enrichment of soil and plant pools. Faster rates of N cycling processes, especially nitrification, lead to fractionation of 14/15N, creating N products that are relatively depleted in 15N. This can lead to enrichment of soil pools, as lighter 14N is lost from the system via leaching or denitrification. Plant N pools can become increasingly enriched as they take up 15N-enriched soil N. Despite similar amounts of N deposition across the Catskill Mountains, forests dominated by different tree species appear to vary in the amount of N retained or lost to nearby streams. To determine if plant and soil 15N could be used as indicators of N cycling rates, we collected foliage, wood, litterfall, organic and mineral soil, and fine roots from single species stands of American beech (Fagus grandifolia), eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis), red oak (Quercus rubra), and sugar maple (Acer saccharum). Fine roots and soil 15N were highest within sugar maple stands (p<0.05). Sugar maple soils also had the highest rates of net nitrification and N leaching. Therefore, soil 15N appears to correlate with forest N retention and loss. However, 15N enrichment was highest within foliage, litterfall and wood of beech trees (p<0.05). The decoupling between foliage 15N and N cycling, as well as between 15N of foliage and fine roots, illustrates that it may not be possible to use a single plant pool as an indicator of N cycling rates.

  16. Using natural abundance radiocarbon to trace the flux of petrocarbon to the seafloor following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

    PubMed

    Chanton, Jeffrey; Zhao, Tingting; Rosenheim, Brad E; Joye, Samantha; Bosman, Samantha; Brunner, Charlotte; Yeager, Kevin M; Diercks, Arne R; Hollander, David

    2015-01-20

    In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon accident released 4.6–6.0 × 10(11) grams or 4.1 to 4.6 million barrels of fossil petroleum derived carbon (petrocarbon) as oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Natural abundance radiocarbon measurements on surface sediment organic matter in a 2.4 × 10(10) m(2) deep-water region surrounding the spill site indicate the deposition of a fossil-carbon containing layer that included 1.6 to 2.6 × 10(10) grams of oil-derived carbon. This quantity represents between 0.5 to 9.1% of the released petrocarbon, with a best estimate of 3.0–4.9%. These values may be lower limit estimates of the fraction of the oil that was deposited on the seafloor because they focus on a limited mostly deep-water area of the Gulf, include a conservative estimate of thickness of the depositional layer, and use an average background or prespill radiocarbon value for sedimentary organic carbon that produces a conservative value. A similar approach using hopane tracer estimated that 4–31% of 2 million barrels of oil that stayed in the deep sea settled on the bottom. Converting that to a percentage of the total oil that entered into the environment (to which we normalized our estimate) converts this range to 1.8 to 14.4%. Although extrapolated over a larger area, our independent estimate produced similar values. PMID:25494527

  17. Cumulative fission yields of short-lived isotopes under natural-abundance-boron-carbide-moderated neutron spectrum

    SciTech Connect

    Finn, Erin C.; Metz, Lori A.; Greenwood, Lawrence R.; Pierson, Bruce; Wittman, Richard S.; Friese, Judah I.; Kephart, Rosara F.

    2015-04-09

    The availability of gamma spectroscopy data on samples containing mixed fission products at short times after irradiation is limited. Due to this limitation, data interpretation methods for gamma spectra of mixed fission product samples, where the individual fission products have not been chemically isolated from interferences, are not well-developed. The limitation is particularly pronounced for fast pooled neutron spectra because of the lack of available fast reactors in the United States. Samples containing the actinide isotopes 233, 235, 238U, 237Np, and 239Pu individually were subjected to a 2$ pulse in the Washington State University 1 MW TRIGA reactor. To achieve a fission-energy neutron spectrum, the spectrum was tailored using a natural abundance boron carbide capsule to absorb neutrons in the thermal and epithermal region of the spectrum. Our tailored neutron spectrum is unique to the WSU reactor facility, consisting of a soft fission spectrum that contains some measurable flux in the resonance region. This results in a neutron spectrum at greater than 0.1 keV with an average energy of 70 keV, similar to fast reactor spectra and approaching that of 235U fission. Unique fission product gamma spectra were collected from 4 minutes to 1 week after fission using single-crystal high purity germanium detectors. Cumulative fission product yields measured in the current work generally agree with published fast pooled fission product yield values from ENDF/B-VII, though a bias was noted for 239Pu. The present work contributes to the compilation of energy-resolved fission product yield nuclear data for nuclear forensic purposes.

  18. Evaluating microbial carbon sources in Athabasca oil sands tailings ponds using natural abundance stable and radiocarbon isotopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahad, J. M.; Pakdel, H.

    2013-12-01

    Natural abundance stable (δ13C) and radiocarbon (Δ14C) isotopes of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) were used to evaluate the carbon sources utilized by the active microbial populations in surface sediments from Athabasca oil sands tailings ponds. The absence of algal-specific PLFAs at three of the four sites investigated, in conjunction with δ13C signatures for PLFAs that were generally within ~3‰ of that reported for oil sands bitumen (~ -30‰), indicated that the microbial communities growing on petroleum constituents were dominated by aerobic heterotrophs. The Δ14C values of PLFAs ranged from -906 to -586‰ and pointed to a significant uptake of fossil carbon (up to ~90% of microbial carbon derived from petroleum), particularly in PLFAs (e.g., cy17:0 and cy19:0) often associated with petroleum hydrocarbon degrading bacteria. The comparatively higher levels of 14C in other, less specific PLFAs (e.g., 16:0) indicated the preferential uptake of younger organic matter by the general microbial population (~50-80% of microbial carbon derived from petroleum). Since the main carbon pools in tailings sediment were essentially 'radiocarbon dead' (i.e., no detectable 14C), the principal source for this modern carbon is considered to be the Athabasca River, which provides the bulk of the water used in the bitumen extraction process. The preferential uptake of the minor amount of young and presumably more biodegradable material present in systems otherwise dominated by recalcitrant petroleum constituents has important implications for remediation strategies. On the one hand, it implies that mining-related organic contaminants could persist in the environment long after tailings pond reclamation has begun. Alternatively, it may be that the young, labile organic matter provided by the Athabasca River plays an important role in stimulating or supporting the microbial utilization of petroleum carbon in oil sands tailings ponds via co-metabolism or priming processes

  19. A novel use of bio-based natural fibers, polymers, and rubbers for composite materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Modi, Sunny Jitendra

    The composites, materials, and packaging industries are searching for alternative materials to attain environmental sustainability. Bio-plastics are highly desired and current microbially-derived bio-plastics, such as PHA (poly-(hydroxy alkanoate)), PHB (poly-(hydroxybutyrate)), and PHBV (poly-(beta-hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate)) could be engineered to have similar properties to conventional thermoplastics. Poly-(hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) is a bio-degradable aliphatic polyester that is produced by a wide range of microorganisms. Basic PHB has relatively high glass transition and melting temperatures. To improve flexibility for potential packaging applications, PHB is synthesized with various co-polymers such as Poly-(3-hydroxyvalerate) (HV) to decrease the glass and melting temperatures and, since there is improved melt stability at lower processing temperatures, broaden the processing window. However, previous work has shown that this polymer is too brittle, temperature-sensitive, and hydrophilic to meet packaging material physical requirements. Therefore, the proposed work focuses on addressing the needs for bio-derived and bio-degradable materials by creating a range of composite materials using natural fibers as reinforcement agents in bio-polymers and bio- plastic-rubber matrices. The new materials should possess properties lacking in PHBV and broaden the processing capabilities, elasticity, and improve the mechanical properties. The first approach was to create novel composites using poly-(beta-hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate) (PHBV) combined with fibers from invasive plants such as common reed (Phragmites australis), reed canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea), and water celery ( Vallisneria americana). The composites were manufactured using traditional processing techniques of extrusion compounding followed by injection molding of ASTM type I parts. The effects of each bio-fiber at 2, 5, and 10% loading on the mechanical, morphological, rheological, and thermal

  20. Influence of Chemical Extraction on Rheological Behavior, Viscoelastic Properties and Functional Characteristics of Natural Heteropolysaccharide/Protein Polymer from Durio zibethinus Seed

    PubMed Central

    Amid, Bahareh Tabatabaee; Mirhosseini, Hamed

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, the demand for a natural plant-based polymer with potential functions from plant sources has increased considerably. The main objective of the current study was to study the effect of chemical extraction conditions on the rheological and functional properties of the heteropolysaccharide/protein biopolymer from durian (Durio zibethinus) seed. The efficiency of different extraction conditions was determined by assessing the extraction yield, protein content, solubility, rheological properties and viscoelastic behavior of the natural polymer from durian seed. The present study revealed that the soaking process had a more significant (p < 0.05) effect than the decolorizing process on the rheological and functional properties of the natural polymer. The considerable changes in the rheological and functional properties of the natural polymer could be due to the significant (p < 0.05) effect of the chemical extraction variables on the protein fraction present in the molecular structure of the natural polymer from durian seed. The natural polymer from durian seed had a more elastic (or gel like) behavior compared to the viscous (liquid like) behavior at low frequency. The present study revealed that the natural heteropolysaccharide/protein polymer from durian seed had a relatively low solubility ranging from 9.1% to 36.0%. This might be due to the presence of impurities, insoluble matter and large particles present in the chemical structure of the natural polymer from durian seed. PMID:23203099

  1. Hierarchical self-assembly of nanoparticles in polymer matrix and the nature of the interparticle interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Yu-Chiao; Chen, Chun-Yu; Chen, Hsin-Lung; Hashimoto, Takeji; Chen, Show-An; Li, Yen-Cheng

    2015-06-01

    Using small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), we elucidated the spatial organization of palladium (Pd) nanoparticles (NPs) in the polymer matrix of poly(2-vinylpyridine) (P2VP) and the nature of inter-nanoparticle interactions, where the NPs were synthesized in the presence of P2VP by the reduction of palladium acetylacetonate (Pd(acac)2). The experimental SAXS profiles were analysed on the basis of a hierarchical structure model considering the following two types of interparticle potential: (i) hard-core repulsion only (i.e., the hard-sphere interaction) and (ii) hard-core repulsion together with an attractive potential well (i.e., the sticky hard-sphere interaction). The corresponding theoretical scattering functions, which were used for analysing the experimental SAXS profiles, were obtained within the context of the Percus-Yevick closure and the Ornstein-Zernike equation in the fundamental liquid theory. The analyses revealed that existence of the attractive potential well is indispensable to account for the experimental SAXS profiles. Moreover, the morphology of the hybrids was found to be characterized by a hierarchical structure with three levels, where about six primary NPs with the diameter of ca. 1.8 nm (level one) formed local clusters (level two), and these clusters aggregated to build up a large-scale mass-fractal structure (level three) with the fractal dimension of ca. 2.3. The scattering function developed here is of general use for quantitatively characterizing the morphological structures of polymer/NP hybrids and, in particular, for exploring the interaction potential of the NPs on the basis of the fundamental liquid theory.

  2. The influence of the nature of a nanoparticle and polymer matrix on the morphological characteristics of polymeric nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valueva, S. V.; Kipper, A. I.; Borovikova, L. N.; Matveeva, N. A.

    2010-12-01

    Comparative studies of the morphological characteristics of selenium- and platinum-containing nanostructures were performed by molecular optics methods. The nanostructures were based on an ionogenic polymeric stabilizer, poly-N,N,N,N-trimethylmethacryloyloxyethylammonium methyl sulfate, and a non-ionogenic polymeric stabilizer, oxyethylcellulose. Studies were performed in aqueous solutions at a fixed ratio between components. The adsorption of a considerable number of polymer macromolecules on nanoparticles with the formation of superhigh-molecular-weight nanostructures with shapes close to spherical was observed for all the nanosystems studied. The thermodynamic state of nanosystems was characterized. Certain morphological characteristics of nanostructures were substantially influenced by the nature of both nanoparticles and polymer matrix.

  3. Stable isotope natural abundance of nitrous oxide emitted from Antarctic tundra soils: effects of sea animal excrement depositions.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Renbin; Liu, Yashu; Li, Xianglan; Sun, Jianjun; Xu, Hua; Sun, Liguang

    2008-11-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O), a greenhouse gas, is mainly emitted from soils during the nitrification and denitrification processes. N2O stable isotope investigations can help to characterize the N2O sources and N2O production mechanisms. N2O isotope measurements have been conducted for different types of global terrestrial ecosystems. However, no isotopic data of N2O emitted from Antarctic tundra ecosystems have been reported although the coastal ice-free tundra around Antarctic continent is the largest sea animal colony on the global scale. Here, we report for the first time stable isotope composition of N2O emitted from Antarctic sea animal colonies (including penguin, seal and skua colonies) and normal tundra soils using in situ field observations and laboratory incubations, and we have analyzed the effects of sea animal excrement depositions on stable isotope natural abundance of N2O. For all the field sites, the soil-emitted N2O was 15N- and 18O-depleted compared with N2O in local ambient air. The mean delta values of the soil-emitted N2O were delta15N = -13.5 +/- 3.2 per thousand and delta18O = 26.2 +/- 1.4 per thousand for the penguin colony, delta15N = -11.5 +/- 5.1 per thousand and delta18O = 26.4 +/- 3.5 per thousand for the skua colony and delta15N = -18.9 +/- 0.7 per thousand and delta18O = 28.8 +/- 1.3 per thousand for the seal colony. In the soil incubations, the isotopic composition of N2O was measured under N2 and under ambient air conditions. The soils incubated under the ambient air emitted very little N2O (2.93 microg N2O--N kg(-1)). Under N2 conditions, much more N2O was formed (9.74 microg N2O--N kg(-1)), and the mean delta15N and delta18O values of N2O were -19.1 +/- 8.0 per thousand and 21.3 +/- 4.3 per thousand, respectively, from penguin colony soils, and -17.0 +/- 4.2 per thousand and 20.6 +/- 3.5 per thousand, respectively, from seal colony soils. The data from in situ field observations and laboratory experiments point to denitrification as the

  4. N-15 NMR spectra of naturally abundant nitrogen in soil and aquatic natural organic matter samples of the International Humic Substances Society

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thorn, K.A.; Cox, L.G.

    2009-01-01

    The naturally abundant nitrogen in soil and aquatic NOM samples from the International Humic Substances Society has been characterized by solid state CP/MAS 15N NMR. Soil samples include humic and fulvic acids from the Elliot soil, Minnesota Waskish peat and Florida Pahokee peat, as well as the Summit Hill soil humic acid and the Leonardite humic acid. Aquatic samples include Suwannee River humic, fulvic and reverse osmosis isolates, Nordic humic and fulvic acids and Pony Lake fulvic acid. Additionally, Nordic and Suwannee River XAD-4 acids and Suwannee River hydrophobic neutral fractions were analyzed. Similar to literature reports, amide/aminoquinone nitrogens comprised the major peaks in the solid state spectra of the soil humic and fulvic acids, along with heterocyclic and amino sugar/terminal amino acid nitrogens. Spectra of aquatic samples, including the XAD-4 acids, contain resolved heterocyclic nitrogen peaks in addition to the amide nitrogens. The spectrum of the nitrogen enriched, microbially derived Pony Lake, Antarctica fulvic acid, appeared to contain resonances in the region of pyrazine, imine and/or pyridine nitrogens, which have not been observed previously in soil or aquatic humic substances by 15N NMR. Liquid state 15N NMR experiments were also recorded on the Elliot soil humic acid and Pony Lake fulvic acid, both to examine the feasibility of the techniques, and to determine whether improvements in resolution over the solid state could be realized. For both samples, polarization transfer (DEPT) and indirect detection (1H-15N gHSQC) spectra revealed greater resolution among nitrogens directly bonded to protons. The amide/aminoquinone nitrogens could also be observed by direct detection experiments.

  5. N-15 NMR spectra of naturally abundant nitrogen in soil and aquatic natural organic matter samples of the International Humic Substances Society

    SciTech Connect

    Thorn, Kevin A.; Cox, Larry G.

    2009-02-28

    The naturally abundant nitrogen in soil and aquatic NOM samples from the International Humic Substances Society has been characterized by solid state CP/MAS ¹⁵N NMR. Soil samples include humic and fulvic acids from the Elliot soil, Minnesota Waskish peat and Florida Pahokee peat, as well as the Summit Hill soil humic acid and the Leonardite humic acid. Aquatic samples include Suwannee River humic, fulvic and reverse osmosis isolates, Nordic humic and fulvic acids and Pony Lake fulvic acid. Additionally, Nordic and Suwannee River XAD-4 acids and Suwannee River hydrophobic neutral fractions were analyzed. Similar to literature reports, amide/aminoquinone nitrogens comprised the major peaks in the solid state spectra of the soil humic and fulvic acids, along with heterocyclic and amino sugar/terminal amino acid nitrogens. Spectra of aquatic samples, including the XAD-4 acids, contain resolved heterocyclic nitrogen peaks in addition to the amide nitrogens. The spectrum of the nitrogen enriched, microbially derived Pony Lake, Antarctica fulvic acid, appeared to contain resonances in the region of pyrazine, imine and/or pyridine nitrogens, which have not been observed previously in soil or aquatic humic substances by ¹⁵N NMR. Liquid state ¹⁵N NMR experiments were also recorded on the Elliot soil humic acid and Pony Lake fulvic acid, both to examine the feasibility of the techniques, and to determine whether improvements in resolution over the solid state could be realized. For both samples, polarization transfer (DEPT) and indirect detection (¹H–¹⁵N gHSQC) spectra revealed greater resolution among nitrogens directly bonded to protons. The amide/aminoquinone nitrogens could also be observed by direct detection experiments.

  6. Light-responsive polymer microcapsules as delivery systems for natural active agents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bizzarro, Valentina; Carfagna, Cosimo; Cerruti, Pierfrancesco; Marturano, Valentina; Ambrogi, Veronica

    2016-05-01

    In this work we report the preparation and the release behavior of UV-responsive polymeric microcapsules containing essential oils as a core. The oil acted also as a monomer solvent during polymerization. Accordingly, the potentially toxic organic solvent traditionally used was replaced with a natural active substance, resulting in a more sustainable functional system. Polymer shell was based on a lightly cross-linked polyamide containing UV-sensitive azobenzene moieties in the main chain. The micro-sized capsules were obtained via interfacial polycondensation in o/w emulsion, and their mean size was measured via Dynamic Light Scattering. Shape and morphology were analyzed through Scanning Electron and Optical Microscopy. UV-responsive behavior was evaluated via spectrofluorimetry, by assessing the release kinetics of a fluorescent probe molecule upon UV light irradiation (λmax=360 nm). The irradiated samples showed an increase in fluorescence intensity, in accordance with the increase of the probe molecule concentration in the release medium. As for the un-irradiated sample, no changes could be detected demonstrating the effectiveness of the obtained releasing system.

  7. Colon-targeted quercetin delivery using natural polymer to enhance its bioavailability

    PubMed Central

    Singhal, Anil; Jain, H.; Singhal, Vipin; Elias, Edwin J.; Showkat, Ahmad

    2011-01-01

    The aim of the present study is to develop a polymer (Guar Gum)-based matrix tablet (using quercetin as a model drug) with sufficient mechanical strength, and promising in vitro mouth-to-colon release profile. By definition, an oral colonic delivery system should retard drug release in the stomach and small intestine, and allow complete release in the colon. By drug delivery to the colon would therefore ensure direct treatment at the disease site, lower dosing, and fewer systemic side effects. Quercetin is antioxidant in nature and used to treat colon cancer, but they have poor absorption in the upper part of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT). As a site for drug delivery, the colon offers a near neutral pH, reduced digestive enzymatic activity, a long transit time, and an increased responsiveness to absorption enhancers. By achieving a colon-targeted drug delivery system, the absorption of quercetin may be increased, which leads to better bioactivity in fewer doses. PMID:21731393

  8. Extractive fixed-site polymer sorbent for selective boron removal from natural water.

    PubMed

    Thakur, Neha; Kumar, Sanjukta A; Shinde, Rakesh N; Pandey, Ashok K; Kumar, Sangita D; Reddy, A V R

    2013-09-15

    Water contamination by boron is a widespread environmental problem. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends maximum boron concentration of 2.4 mg L(-1) for drinking water. The paper presents a simple method for preparation of functionalized sheet sorbent for selective extraction of boron from natural water. The pores of commercially available poly(propylene) membrane were functionalized by room temperature in situ crosslinking of poly(vinylbenzyl chloride) with a cyclic diamine piperazine. The precursor membranes were chemically modified with N-methyl D-glucamine which is selective for boron. Characterization of membrane was carried out using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and attenuated total reflection-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) techniques. The functionalized membrane has been characterized in terms of parameters that influence the sorption of boron from aqueous streams like pH, uptake capacity, contact time, effects of competing ions and reusability. The maximum boron sorption capacity determined experimentally was 28 mg g(-1). The studies showed that trace concentrations of boron were quantitatively removed from water at neutral pH. The developed fixed site polymer sorbent exhibited high sorption capacity and fast kinetics as compared to various sorbents reported in literature. It was successfully applied for the removal of boron from ground water and seawater samples in presence of high concentration of interfering ions.

  9. Extractive fixed-site polymer sorbent for selective boron removal from natural water.

    PubMed

    Thakur, Neha; Kumar, Sanjukta A; Shinde, Rakesh N; Pandey, Ashok K; Kumar, Sangita D; Reddy, A V R

    2013-09-15

    Water contamination by boron is a widespread environmental problem. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends maximum boron concentration of 2.4 mg L(-1) for drinking water. The paper presents a simple method for preparation of functionalized sheet sorbent for selective extraction of boron from natural water. The pores of commercially available poly(propylene) membrane were functionalized by room temperature in situ crosslinking of poly(vinylbenzyl chloride) with a cyclic diamine piperazine. The precursor membranes were chemically modified with N-methyl D-glucamine which is selective for boron. Characterization of membrane was carried out using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and attenuated total reflection-Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) techniques. The functionalized membrane has been characterized in terms of parameters that influence the sorption of boron from aqueous streams like pH, uptake capacity, contact time, effects of competing ions and reusability. The maximum boron sorption capacity determined experimentally was 28 mg g(-1). The studies showed that trace concentrations of boron were quantitatively removed from water at neutral pH. The developed fixed site polymer sorbent exhibited high sorption capacity and fast kinetics as compared to various sorbents reported in literature. It was successfully applied for the removal of boron from ground water and seawater samples in presence of high concentration of interfering ions. PMID:23892170

  10. Bacterial abundance and aerobic microbial activity across natural and oyster aquaculture habitats during summer conditions in a northeastern Pacific estuary.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We measured sediment properties and the abundance and functional diversity of microbes in Willapa Bay, Washington, USA, to test the response of sediment microbes to oyster aquaculture. Sites spanned the estuary gradient (salinity 24-30) and six different habitat types: eelgrass (Zostera marina), uns...

  11. Using PLFA Biomarkers and Natural Abundance Stable and Radiocarbon Isotopes to Characterize the Microbial Ecology and Metabolism of Methane Cycling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mills, C. T.; Mandernack, K. W.; Slater, G. F.; Dias, R. F.

    2008-12-01

    Methane generated in the subsurface is a major source of atmospheric CH4, but its release is mitigated by CH4-oxidizing bacteria (methanotrophs). Therefore, it is important to understand the ecology of methanotroph communities in various environments. Phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analyses are a particularly useful method for characterizing these communities for two reasons: (1) Many type I and II methanotrophs produce specific PLFA biomarkers that can be used to estimate their populations, and (2) because CH4 is often very depleted in 13C and sometimes 14C, natural abundance δ13CPLFA and Δ14CPLFA values can be used to trace the flow of CH4- derived carbon through microbial ecosystems. We used these tools to evaluate the role of methanotrophs in carbon flow in three different environments: (1) a soil column overlying a coal bed methane (CBM) seep in southwest CO, and pristine, oligotrophic groundwaters within (2) sedimentary and (3) granitic host rocks in Japan. In the soil column impacted by CBM seepage, concentrations of the biomarker PLFAs for type I (16:1ω8cis) and type II (18:1ω8cis) methanotrophs were as high as 13 and 18 nmoles (g dry soil)-1, respectively. Depth profiles of methanotroph PLFA concentrations varied over different sampling dates indicating dynamic populations. δ13CPLFA values of the CBM soils (-25.1 to - 66.9‰) were substantially more negative than those for the control soil (-14.5 to -32.5‰) indicating that CBM is an important carbon source for the CBM-impacted soil microbial community. Δ14CPLFA values (-351 to -936‰) indicate the importance of 14C-dead CBM as a carbon source to the microbial communities, contributing 32 to 66% of total carbon in PLFA structures isolated from shallow soils and 67 to 97% for those isolated from deeper soils. The biomarker for type II methanotrophs, comprised 3 and 18% of total PLFAs in sedimentary and granitic groundwaters, respectively. The Δ14C values determined for type II methanotroph PLFAs

  12. Upgrading of raw natural gas using high-performance polymer membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Stern, S.A.; Meyer, H.S.; Venkataraman, V.K.; Shoemaker, H.D.

    1993-06-01

    The separation of CO{sub 2} and H{sub 2}S from raw natural gas is essential for enhancing the heating value of the gas and for providing environmental safety during nation and use. Membrane separation processes are particularly useful for this application because they are inherently energy-efficient. Membrane processes also offer other important advantages, such as ease of scale-up due to module design, good space and weight efficiency and great flexibility in handling variations in the flow rate, pressure and composition of the raw natural gas streams. In a coordinated effort, the Gas Research Institute and the Department of Energy, Morgantown Energy Technology Center are funding an extensive study at Syracuse University on the relationships between the chemical structure of various polymers and their permeability to different gases. Based on criteria derived from this study, novel fluorine-containing polyimides that exhibit very high C0{sub 2}/CH{sub 4}, selectivities as well as significant H{sub 2}S/CH{sub 4}, selectivities were synthesized. These ``dense`` (homogeneous) membranes separated various mixtures of C0{sub 2}/CH{sub 4}, and H{sub 2}S/CH{sub 4}/CO{sub 2} at 35{degree}C (95{degree}F) and at pressures up to 10 atm (147 psi). The results of these measurements agree well with computer simulations. The C0{sub 2} content of CH{sub 4}/CO{sub 2} mixtures containing as much as 40 mole percent C0{sub 2} can be reduced with the polyamide membranes to pipeline specifications ({le} 2 mole percent C0{sub 2}). To reduce the H{sub 2}S content of H{sub 2}S/CH{sub 4}/CO{sub 2} mixtures to pipeline specifications ({le} 4 ppM H{sub 2}S), the membranes are best combined with conventional gas-absorption processes, such as a selective amine. Such ``hybrid`` processes for the upgrading of natural gas can be more economical than conventional gas-absorption processes alone.

  13. Natural-Synthetic Hybrid Polymers Developed via Electrospinning: The Effect of PET in Chitosan/Starch System

    PubMed Central

    Espíndola-González, Adolfo; Martínez-Hernández, Ana Laura; Fernández-Escobar, Francisco; Castaño, Victor Manuel; Brostow, Witold; Datashvili, Tea; Velasco-Santos, Carlos

    2011-01-01

    Chitosan is an amino polysaccharide found in nature, which is biodegradable, nontoxic and biocompatible. It has versatile features and can be used in a variety of applications including films, packaging, and also in medical surgery. Recently a possibility to diversify chitosan properties has emerged by combining it with synthetic materials to produce novel natural-synthetic hybrid polymers. We have studied structural and thermophysical properties of chitosan + starch + poly(ethylene terephthalate) (Ch + S + PET) fibers developed via electrospinning. Properties of these hybrids polymers are compared with extant chitosan containing hybrids synthesized by electrospinning. Molecular interactions and orientation in the fibers are analyzed by infrared and Raman spectroscopies respectively, morphology by scanning electron microscopy and thermophysical properties by thermogravimetric analysis and differential scanning calorimetry. Addition of PET to Ch + S systems results in improved thermal stability at elevated temperatures. PMID:21673930

  14. A novel use of bio-based natural fibers, polymers, and rubbers for composite materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Modi, Sunny Jitendra

    The composites, materials, and packaging industries are searching for alternative materials to attain environmental sustainability. Bio-plastics are highly desired and current microbially-derived bio-plastics, such as PHA (poly-(hydroxy alkanoate)), PHB (poly-(hydroxybutyrate)), and PHBV (poly-(beta-hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate)) could be engineered to have similar properties to conventional thermoplastics. Poly-(hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) is a bio-degradable aliphatic polyester that is produced by a wide range of microorganisms. Basic PHB has relatively high glass transition and melting temperatures. To improve flexibility for potential packaging applications, PHB is synthesized with various co-polymers such as Poly-(3-hydroxyvalerate) (HV) to decrease the glass and melting temperatures and, since there is improved melt stability at lower processing temperatures, broaden the processing window. However, previous work has shown that this polymer is too brittle, temperature-sensitive, and hydrophilic to meet packaging material physical requirements. Therefore, the proposed work focuses on addressing the needs for bio-derived and bio-degradable materials by creating a range of composite materials using natural fibers as reinforcement agents in bio-polymers and bio- plastic-rubber matrices. The new materials should possess properties lacking in PHBV and broaden the processing capabilities, elasticity, and improve the mechanical properties. The first approach was to create novel composites using poly-(beta-hydroxy butyrate-co-valerate) (PHBV) combined with fibers from invasive plants such as common reed (Phragmites australis), reed canary grass (Phalaris arundinacea), and water celery ( Vallisneria americana). The composites were manufactured using traditional processing techniques of extrusion compounding followed by injection molding of ASTM type I parts. The effects of each bio-fiber at 2, 5, and 10% loading on the mechanical, morphological, rheological, and thermal

  15. Comparison of pollinators and natural enemies: a meta-analysis of landscape and local effects on abundance and richness in crops.

    PubMed

    Shackelford, Gorm; Steward, Peter R; Benton, Tim G; Kunin, William E; Potts, Simon G; Biesmeijer, Jacobus C; Sait, Steven M

    2013-11-01

    To manage agroecosystems for multiple ecosystem services, we need to know whether the management of one service has positive, negative, or no effects on other services. We do not yet have data on the interactions between pollination and pest-control services. However, we do have data on the distributions of pollinators and natural enemies in agroecosystems. Therefore, we compared these two groups of ecosystem service providers, to see if the management of farms and agricultural landscapes might have similar effects on the abundance and richness of both. In a meta-analysis, we compared 46 studies that sampled bees, predatory beetles, parasitic wasps, and spiders in fields, orchards, or vineyards of food crops. These studies used the proximity or proportion of non-crop or natural habitats in the landscapes surrounding these crops (a measure of landscape complexity), or the proximity or diversity of non-crop plants in the margins of these crops (a measure of local complexity), to explain the abundance or richness of these beneficial arthropods. Compositional complexity at both landscape and local scales had positive effects on both pollinators and natural enemies, but different effects on different taxa. Effects on bees and spiders were significantly positive, but effects on parasitoids and predatory beetles (mostly Carabidae and Staphylinidae) were inconclusive. Landscape complexity had significantly stronger effects on bees than it did on predatory beetles and significantly stronger effects in non-woody rather than in woody crops. Effects on richness were significantly stronger than effects on abundance, but possibly only for spiders. This abundance-richness difference might be caused by differences between generalists and specialists, or between arthropods that depend on non-crop habitats (ecotone species and dispersers) and those that do not (cultural species). We call this the 'specialist-generalist' or 'cultural difference' mechanism. If complexity has stronger

  16. Food Resources of Stream Macronivertebrates Determined by Natural-Abundance stable C and N Isotopes and a 15N Tracer Addition

    SciTech Connect

    Mulholland, P. J.

    2000-01-01

    Trophic relationships were examined using natural-abundance {sup 13}C and {sup 15}N analyses and a {sup 15}N-tracer addition experiment in Walker Branch, a 1st-order forested stream in eastern Tennessee. In the {sup 15}N-tracer addition experiment, we added {sup 15}NH{sub 4} to stream water over a 6-wk period in early spring, and measured {sup 15}N:{sup 14}N ratios in different taxa and biomass compartments over distance and time. Samples collected from a station upstream from the {sup 15}N addition provided data on natural-abundance {sup 13}C:{sup 12}C and {sup 15}N:{sup 14}N ratios. The natural-abundance {sup 15}N analysis proved to be of limited value in identifying food resources of macroinvertebrates because {sup 15}N values were not greatly different among food resources. In general, the natural-abundance stable isotope approach was most useful for determining whether epilithon or detritus were important food resources for organisms that may use both (e.g., the snail Elimia clavaeformis), and to provide corroborative evidence of food resources of taxa for which the {sup 15}N tracer results were not definitive. The {sup 15}N tracer results showed that the mayflies Stenonema spp. and Baetis spp. assimilated primarily epilithon, although Baetis appeared to assimilate a portion of the epilithon (e.g., algal cells) with more rapid N turnover than the bulk pool sampled. Although Elimia did not reach isotopic equilibrium during the tracer experiment, application of a N-turnover model to the field data suggested that it assimilated a combination of epilithon and detritus. The amphipod Gammarus minus appeared to depend mostly on fine benthic organic matter (FBOM), and the coleopteran Anchytarsus bicolor on epixylon. The caddisfly Diplectrona modesta appeared to assimilate primarily a fast N-turnover portion of the FBOM pool, and Simuliidae a fast N-turnover component of the suspended particulate organic matter pool rather than the bulk pool sampled. Together, the

  17. Investigation of imprinting parameters and their recognition nature for quinine-molecularly imprinted polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Jian-feng; Zhu, Quan-hong; Deng, Qin-ying

    2007-08-01

    A series of molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) was prepared using quinine as the template molecules by bulk polymerization. The presence of monomer-template solution complexes in non-covalent MIPs systems has been verified by both fluorescence and UV-vis spectrometric detection. The influence of different synthetic conditions (porogen, functional monomer, cross-linkers, initiation methods, monomer-template ratio, etc.) on recognition properties of the polymers was investigated. Scatchard analysis revealed that two classes of binding sites were formed in the imprinted polymer. The corresponding dissociation constants were estimated to be 45.00 μmol l -1 and 1.42 mmol l -1, respectively, by utilizing a multi-site recognition model. The binding characteristics of the imprinted polymers were explored in various solvents using equilibrium binding experiments. In the organic media, results suggested that polar interactions (hydrogen bonding, ionic interactions, etc.) between acidic monomer/polymer and template molecules were mainly responsible for the recognition, whereas in aqueous media, hydrophobic interactions had a remarkable non-specific contribution to the overall binding. The specificity of MIP was evaluated by rebinding the other structurally similar compounds. The results indicated that the imprinted polymers exhibited an excellent stereo-selectivity toward quinine.

  18. Correlation to Predict Collision Efficiency of Natural Organic Matter (NOM)- and Polymer- coated Nanoparticles in Porous Media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lowry, G. V.; Phenrat, T.; Cisneros, C. M.; Schoenfelder, D. P.; Fagerlund, F.; Kim, H.; Illangasekare, T.; Tilton, R. D.

    2008-12-01

    The fate of manufactured nanoparticles released to the environment is of great interest due to their increasing use in consumer products and their potential risk to the environment and human health. Manufactured nanomaterials typically have a polymeric surface coating to provide specific functionality, or will adsorb natural organic matter (NOM) once released into the environment. Adsorbed polymer and NOM can provide electrosteic repulsions that enhance the migration of nanoparticles in porous media. Semi-empirical correlations to predict the collision efficiency of electrostatically stabilized (uncoated) colloids are available, however, they are not applicable to nanomaterials coated with polymeric or NOM layers. We present a semi- empirical correlation to predict the collision efficiency of NOM and polymer-coated nanomaterials in saturated porous media. The adsorbed mass and adsorbed layer properties (including thickness) are determined and particle breakthrough curves are generated for a number of particle and coating types. Regression analysis is then used to develop a semi-empirical correlation that includes a parameter (NLEK) representing electrosteric repulsions afforded by adsorbed NOM or polymer. The correlation appears robust over a range of four particle and four coating types and should be a valuable tool for predicting the relative mobility of different manufactured and natural nanomaterials based on a few measurable properties.

  19. Epoxidised Natural Rubber Based Composite Polymer Electrolyte Systems For Use In Electrochemical Device Applications

    SciTech Connect

    Idris, Razali; Tasnim, Anis; Mahbor, Kamisah Mohamad; Hakim, Mas Rosemal; Mohd, Dahlan Hj.; Ghazali, Zulkafli

    2009-09-14

    Composite polymer electrolyte (CPE) comprising epoxy-fimctionalized rubber (ENR), HDDA monomer, mixed plasticizer-propylene carbonate/ethylene carbonate, silica filler and lithium bis(trifluoromethanesulfonylimide), Li[(CF{sub 3}SO{sub 2}){sub 2}N]have been prepared using photo-induced polymerization by UV irradiation technique. The irradiated samples of filled and non-filled silica of composites electrolytes have formed dry solid-flexible and transparent films in the self-constructed Teflon mould. Thermal behaviors, FTIR, morphology and ionic conductivity were performed on such ENR based PE polymer composites having varied compositions. The thermal stability has improved slightly in the temperature range 120-200 deg. C with optimized composition. FTIR measurements data revealed that the interaction of lithium with the epoxy groups of the un-bonded electrons within polymer occurred. The results suggest that the variation of conductivity with temperature indicates that the silica filled composite has achieved optimal ionic conductivity 10{sup -4} S cm{sup -1} and retained high percent of plasticizer. The ionic conductivity behavior of the silica-filled ENR based composite polymer electrolyte is consistent at elevated temperature compared to non-filled CPE system. This finding opens a new pathway for further investigation to diffusion of ions in the complex polymer electrolyte systems.

  20. Epoxidised Natural Rubber Based Composite Polymer Electrolyte Systems For Use In Electrochemical Device Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Idris, Razali; Tasnim, Anis; Hakim, Mas Rosemal; Mohd, Dahlan Hj.; Ghazali, Zulkafli; Mahbor, Kamisah Mohamad

    2009-09-01

    Composite polymer electrolyte (CPE) comprising epoxy-fimctionalized rubber (ENR), HDDA monomer, mixed plasticizer-propylene carbonate/ethylene carbonate, silica filler and lithium bis(trifluoromethanesulfonylimide), Li[(CF3SO2)2N]have been prepared using photo-induced polymerization by UV irradiation technique. The irradiated samples of filled and non-filled silica of composites electrolytes have formed dry solid-flexible and transparent films in the self-constructed Teflon mould. Thermal behaviors, FTIR, morphology and ionic conductivity were performed on such ENR based PE polymer composites having varied compositions. The thermal stability has improved slightly in the temperature range 120-200° C with optimized composition. FTIR measurements data revealed that the interaction of lithium with the epoxy groups of the un-bonded electrons within polymer occurred. The results suggest that the variation of conductivity with temperature indicates that the silica filled composite has achieved optimal ionic conductivity 10-4 S cm-1 and retained high percent of plasticizer. The ionic conductivity behavior of the silica-filled ENR based composite polymer electrolyte is consistent at elevated temperature compared to non-filled CPE system. This finding opens a new pathway for further investigation to diffusion of ions in the complex polymer electrolyte systems.

  1. Enzymatic modification of natural and synthetic polymers using lipases and proteases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chakraborty, Soma

    Enzymatic modification of natural/synthetic polymers [starch nanoparticles, poly (n-alkyl acrylates) and poly(vinyl formamide)] was studied. Enzymes used for catalysis were lipases and proteases. Starch nanoparticles (40nm diameter) were incorporated into AOT-coated reverse micelles. Reactions performed with the acylating agents vinyl stearate, epsilon-caprolactone and maleic anhydride in toluene in presence of Novozyme-435 at 40°C for 36h gave products with degrees of substitution of 0.8, 0.6 and 0.4 respectively. DEPT-135 NMR spectra revealed that the modification occurred regioselectively at the C-6 position of the glucose units. Infrared microspectroscopy showed that the surfactant coated starch nanoparticles diffuse into pores of Novozyme-435 beads, coming in close proximity with CALB to promote modification. The modified products retained nanoscale dimensions. Catalysis of amide bond formation between a low molar mass amine and ester side groups of poly(n-alkyl acrylates)[poly(ethyl acrylate), poly(methyl acrylate) and poly(butyl acrylate)] was also examined. The nucleophiles were mono and diamines. Among the poly(n-alkyl acrylates) and the lipases studied, poly(ethyl acrylate) was the preferred substrate and Novozyme-435 the most active lipase. Poly(ethyl acrylate) in 80% by-volume toluene was reacted with 1 equivalent per repeat unit of hexyl amine at 70°C in presence of Novozyme-435. The product contained 10.6 mol% amide groups. Attempts to increase the amidation beyond 10--11 mol% by increasing the reaction time or use of fresh enzyme were unsuccessful, showing that poly(ethylacrylate-co-10mol%hexylacrylamide) is a poor substrate for further acylation. When chiral amines ([R,S]-alpha-methyl benzylamine, [R,S]-beta-methyl phenyl amine) were used as nucleophiles, Novozyme-435 enantioselectively catalyzed amidation of poly(ethyl acrylate). Poly(vinyl formamide), P(VfAm) by acid or base-catalyzed hydrolysis leads to poly(vinylamine), P(VAm), and

  2. The atomic nature of polymer-metal interactions in adhesion, friction and wear

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buckley, D. H.; Brainard, W. A.

    1973-01-01

    Adhesion experiments with polytetra-fluoroethylene (PTFE) and polyimide contacting tungsten indicate that the polymers bond chemically to the clean metal surface. Polymer chain fragments which transfer to the surface of tungsten in field ion microscopy adhesion studies are highly oriented. Auger emission spectroscopy of PTFE transfer films to various metal surfaces indicates that the PTFE is bonded to the metal surface via the carbon atom. With PTFE in sliding contact with different orientations of aluminum, metal orientation is found to influence surfaces in sliding. The lowest friction and least amount of surface damage is detected on the highest atomic density (111) plane. The friction process itself can initiate polymer film formation from simple organic molecules.

  3. Constraints on abundance, composition, and nature of X-ray amorphous components of soils and rocks at Gale crater, Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dehouck, Erwin; McLennan, Scott M.; Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Cousin, Agnès.

    2014-12-01

    X-ray diffraction patterns of the three samples analyzed by Curiosity's Chemistry and Mineralogy (CheMin) instrument during the first year of the Mars Science Laboratory mission—the Rocknest sand, and the John Klein and Cumberland drill fines, both extracted from the Sheepbed mudstone—show evidence for a significant amorphous component of unclear origin. We developed a mass balance calculation program that determines the range of possible chemical compositions of the crystalline and amorphous components of these samples within the uncertainties of mineral abundances derived from CheMin data. In turn, the chemistry constrains the minimum abundance of amorphous component required to have realistic compositions (all oxides ≥ 0 wt %): 21-22 wt % for Rocknest and 15-20 wt % for Cumberland, in good agreement with estimates derived from the diffraction patterns (~27 and ~31 wt %, respectively). Despite obvious differences between the Rocknest sand and the Sheepbed mudstone, the amorphous components of the two sites are chemically very similar, having comparable concentrations of SiO2, TiO2, Al2O3, Cr2O3, FeOT, CaO, Na2O, K2O, and P2O5. MgO tends to be lower in Rocknest, although it may also be comparable between the two samples depending on the exact composition of the smectite in Sheepbed. The only unambiguous difference is the SO3 content, which is always higher in Rocknest. The observed similarity suggests that the two amorphous components share a common origin or formation process. The individual phases possibly present within the amorphous components include: volcanic (or impact) glass, hisingerite (or silica + ferrihydrite), amorphous sulfates (or adsorbed SO42-), and nanophase ferric oxides.

  4. Polydopamine--a nature-inspired polymer coating for biomedical science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lynge, Martin E.; van der Westen, Rebecca; Postma, Almar; Städler, Brigitte

    2011-12-01

    Polymer coatings are of central importance for many biomedical applications. In the past few years, poly(dopamine) (PDA) has attracted considerable interest for various types of biomedical applications. This feature article outlines the basic chemistry and material science regarding PDA and discusses its successful application from coatings for interfacing with cells, to drug delivery and biosensing. Although many questions remain open, the primary aim of this feature article is to illustrate the advent of PDA on its way to become a popular polymer for bioengineering purposes.

  5. House and Stable Fly Seasonal Abundance, Larval Development Substrates, and Natural Parasitism on Small Equine Farms in Florida.

    PubMed

    Machtinger, E T; Leppla, N C; Hogsette, J A

    2016-08-01

    House flies, Musca domestica Linnaeus, and stable flies, Stomoxys calcitrans (L.) (Diptera: Muscidae), are common pests on horse farms. The successful use of pupal parasitoids for management of these pests requires knowledge of seasonal fluctuations and biology of the flies as well as natural parasitism levels. However, these dynamics have not been investigated on small equine farms. A 1-year field study began in July 2010, in north central Florida, to determine adult fly population levels and breeding areas on four small equine farms. Weekly surveillance showed that pest flies were present year-round, though there were differences in adult population levels among farms and seasons. Fly development was not confirmed on two of the four small farms, suggesting that subtle differences in husbandry may adversely affect the development of immature flies. In six substrates previously identified as the most common among the farms, stable fly puparia were found overwhelmingly in hay mixed with equine manure and house fly puparia were found in fresh pine shavings mixed with equine manure. Natural parasitism was minimal as expected, but greatest numbers of natural parasitoids collected were of the genus Spalangia. Differences in adult and immature fly numbers recovered emphasizes the need for farm owners to confirm on-site fly development prior to purchase and release of biological control agents. Additionally, due to the low natural parasitism levels and domination of parasitism by Spalangia cameroni, augmentative releases using this species may be the most effective.

  6. Compatibility and Impact Resistance of Biodegradable Polymer Blends Using Clays and Natural Nanotubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Yichen; Yuan, Xue; Zuo, Xianghao; Rafailovich, Miriam

    Montmorillonite clays and Halloysite nanotubes (HNTs) were modified by surface adsorption of resorcinol di (phenyl phosphate) (RDP) oligomers. Biodegradable poly (lactic acid) (PLA) and poly (butylene adipate-co-butylene terephthalate) (PBAT) polymers were blended together with RDP coated clays and tubes. TEM images of thin sections indicated that even though both RDP coated clay nanotubes and platelets located on the interfacial region between two immiscible polymers, only the platelets, having the larger aspect ratio, were able to reduce the PBAT domain sizes. The ability of clay platelets to partially compatibilize the blend was further confirmed by the dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) which showed that the glass transition temperatures of two polymers tend to shift closer. Izod impact testing demonstrated that the rubbery PBAT phase greatly increased the impact strength of the unfilled blend, but addition of only 5% of clay filler decrease the impact strength by nearly 50% while a small increase was observed with nanotubes at that concentration. A simple model is proposed. The clay platelets are observed to cover the interfacial area. Although they are effective at reducing the interfacial tension, they block the entanglements between two polymer phase and increase the overall brittleness. On the other hand, the HNTs are observed to lie perpendicular to the interface, which makes them less effective in reducing interfacial tension, but far more effective at retarding micro-crack propagation.

  7. Seasonal variation in species composition and abundance of demersal fish and invertebrates in a Seagrass Natural Reserve on the eastern coast of the Shandong Peninsula, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Qiang; Guo, Dong; Zhang, Peidong; Zhang, Xiumei; Li, Wentao; Wu, Zhongxin

    2016-03-01

    Seagrass habitats are structurally complex ecosystems, which support high productivity and biodiversity. In temperate systems the density of seagrass may change seasonally, and this may influence the associated fish and invertebrate community. Little is known about the role of seagrass beds as possible nursery areas for fish and invertebrates in China. To study the functioning of a seagrass habitat in northern China, demersal fish and invertebrates were collected monthly using traps, from February 2009 to January 2010. The density, leaf length and biomass of the dominant seagrass Zostera marina and water temperature were also measured. The study was conducted in a Seagrass Natural Reserve (SNR) on the eastern coast of the Shandong Peninsula, China. A total of 22 fish species and five invertebrate species were recorded over the year. The dominant fish species were Synechogobius ommaturus, Sebastes schlegelii, Pholis fangi, Pagrus major and Hexagrammos otakii and these species accounted for 87% of the total number of fish. The dominant invertebrate species were Charybdis japonica and Octopus variabilis and these accounted for 98% of the total abundance of invertebrates. There was high temporal variation in species composition and abundance. The peak number of fish species occurred in August-October 2009, while the number of individual fish and biomass was highest during November 2009. Invertebrate numbers and biomass was highest in March, April, July and September 2009. Temporal changes in species abundance of fishes and invertebrates corresponded with changes in the shoot density and leaf length of the seagrass, Zostera marina.

  8. Impact of the nature of the compliant electrodes on the dielectric constant of acrylic and silicone electroactive polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vu-Cong, T.; Jean-Mistral, C.; Sylvestre, A.

    2012-10-01

    Dielectric elastomers are emerging electroactive materials used in high performance applications such as robots, artificial muscles and energy harvesting. The development of such applications requires the use of accurate, predictive, reliable models which take into account the dielectric constant (permittivity) of these materials. This dielectric constant is not clearly defined for such applications and depends on many parameters. This leads to values dispersed in the literature for the same electroactive polymer. This paper shows that the nature of the compliant electrodes can influence this dielectric constant significantly. However, the reduction generally observed in this permittivity according to the stretching of elastomer cannot be imputed to the nature of these electrodes, and rather confirms an effect of the volume of the elastomer. This tends to prove that the influence of the compliant electrode is located at the electrode-elastomer interfaces. In addition, the nature of the metallic particles embedded in the electrode grease seems not to influence the value of the dielectric constant. Lastly, we propose analytic laws to describe changes of the dielectric constant as a function of the temperature and the deformation of the material. This makes it possible to define new limits of operation for these polymers for actuators and energy harvesting applications.

  9. Poly(ADP-ribose)--a unique natural polymer structural features, biological role and approaches to the chemical synthesis.

    PubMed

    Drenichev, Mikhail S; Mikhailov, Sergey N

    2015-01-01

    Poly(ADP-ribose) (PAR) is a natural polymer, taking part in numerous important cellular processes. Several enzymes are involved in biosynthesis and degradation of PAR. One of them, poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase-1 (PARP-1) is considered to be a perspective target for the design of new drugs, affecting PAR metabolism. The structure of PAR was established by enzymatic hydrolysis and further analysis of the products, but total chemical synthesis of PAR hasn't been described yet. Several approaches have been developed on the way to chemical synthesis of this unique biopolymer.

  10. Plant diversity moderates drought stress in grasslands: Implications from a large real-world study on (13)C natural abundances.

    PubMed

    Klaus, Valentin H; Hölzel, Norbert; Prati, Daniel; Schmitt, Barbara; Schöning, Ingo; Schrumpf, Marion; Solly, Emily F; Hänsel, Falk; Fischer, Markus; Kleinebecker, Till

    2016-10-01

    Land-use change and intensification play a key role in the current biodiversity crisis. The resulting species loss can have severe effects on ecosystem functions and services, thereby increasing ecosystem vulnerability to climate change. We explored whether land-use intensification (i.e. fertilization intensity), plant diversity and other potentially confounding environmental factors may be significantly related to water use (i.e. drought stress) of grassland plants. Drought stress was assessed using δ(13)C abundances in aboveground plant biomass of 150 grassland plots across a gradient of land-use intensity. Under water shortage, plants are forced to increasingly take up the heavier (13)C due to closing stomata leading to an enrichment of (13)C in biomass. Plants were sampled at the community level and for single species, which belong to three different functional groups (one grass, one herb, two legumes). Results show that plant diversity was significantly related to the δ(13)C signal in community, grass and legume biomass indicating that drought stress was lower under higher diversity, although this relation was not significant for the herb species under study. Fertilization, in turn, mostly increased drought stress as indicated by more positive δ(13)C values. This effect was mostly indirect by decreasing plant diversity. In line with these results, we found similar patterns in the δ(13)C signal of the organic matter in the topsoil, indicating a long history of these processes. Our study provided strong indication for a positive biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship with reduced drought stress at higher plant diversity. However, it also underlined a negative reinforcing situation: as land-use intensification decreases plant diversity in grasslands, this might subsequently increases drought sensitivity. Vice-versa, enhancing plant diversity in species-poor agricultural grasslands may moderate negative effects of future climate change.

  11. Natural abundance stable carbon isotope evidence for the routing and de novo synthesis of bone FA and cholesterol.

    PubMed

    Jim, Susan; Ambrose, Stanley H; Evershed, Richard P

    2003-02-01

    This research reported in this paper investigated the relationship between diet and bone FA and cholesterol in rats raised on a variety of isotopically controlled diets comprising 20% C3 or C4 protein (casein) and C3 and/or C4 nonprotein or energy (sucrose, starch, and oil) macronutrients. Compound-specific stable carbon isotope analysis (delta13C) was performed on the FA (16:0, 18:0, 18:1, and 18:2) and cholesterol isolated from the diet (n = 4) and bone (n = 8) of these animals. The dietary signals reflected by the bone lipids were investigated using linear regression analysis. delta13C values of bone cholesterol and stearic (18:0) acid were shown to reflect whole-diet delta13C values, whereas the delta13C values of bone palmitic (16:0), oleic (18:1), and linoleic (18:2) acids reflected dietary FA delta13C values. Dietary signal differences are a result of the balance between direct incorporation (or routing) and de novo synthesis of each of these bone lipids. Estimates of the degree of routing of these bone lipids gleaned from correlations between delta13C(dlipid-wdiet) (= delta13C(diet lipid) - delta13C(whole diet)) spacings and delta13C(blipid-wdiet) (= delta13C(bone lipid) - delta13C(whole diet)) fractionations demonstrated that the extent of routing, where 18:2 > 16:0 > 18:1 > 18:0 > cholesterol, reflected the relative abundances of these lipids in the diet. These findings provide the basis for more accurate insights into diet when the delta13C analysis of bone fatty FA or cholesterol is employed.

  12. Plant diversity moderates drought stress in grasslands: Implications from a large real-world study on (13)C natural abundances.

    PubMed

    Klaus, Valentin H; Hölzel, Norbert; Prati, Daniel; Schmitt, Barbara; Schöning, Ingo; Schrumpf, Marion; Solly, Emily F; Hänsel, Falk; Fischer, Markus; Kleinebecker, Till

    2016-10-01

    Land-use change and intensification play a key role in the current biodiversity crisis. The resulting species loss can have severe effects on ecosystem functions and services, thereby increasing ecosystem vulnerability to climate change. We explored whether land-use intensification (i.e. fertilization intensity), plant diversity and other potentially confounding environmental factors may be significantly related to water use (i.e. drought stress) of grassland plants. Drought stress was assessed using δ(13)C abundances in aboveground plant biomass of 150 grassland plots across a gradient of land-use intensity. Under water shortage, plants are forced to increasingly take up the heavier (13)C due to closing stomata leading to an enrichment of (13)C in biomass. Plants were sampled at the community level and for single species, which belong to three different functional groups (one grass, one herb, two legumes). Results show that plant diversity was significantly related to the δ(13)C signal in community, grass and legume biomass indicating that drought stress was lower under higher diversity, although this relation was not significant for the herb species under study. Fertilization, in turn, mostly increased drought stress as indicated by more positive δ(13)C values. This effect was mostly indirect by decreasing plant diversity. In line with these results, we found similar patterns in the δ(13)C signal of the organic matter in the topsoil, indicating a long history of these processes. Our study provided strong indication for a positive biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship with reduced drought stress at higher plant diversity. However, it also underlined a negative reinforcing situation: as land-use intensification decreases plant diversity in grasslands, this might subsequently increases drought sensitivity. Vice-versa, enhancing plant diversity in species-poor agricultural grasslands may moderate negative effects of future climate change. PMID:27220098

  13. Soil Microbial 15N-Natural Abundance is Enriched Relative to Other Soil N Pools and Indicates Microbial C-Limitation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dijkstra, P.; Doucett, R.; Hart, S. C.; Boring, L. L.; Schwartz, E.; Hungate, B. A.

    2004-12-01

    Soil microbial biomass is responsible for many of the nitrogen (N) transformations that occur between different soil organic matter pools, plants and atmosphere. For this reason, it is important to learn more about the 15N natural abundance of these organisms. The microbial biomass takes up organic carbon (C) and N and inorganic N for assimilation and respiration. Under C-limited conditions, organic N compounds are mainly utilized as C-source, and excess N leaves the cell (mineralization). The processes of N assimilation, N dissimilation, and export discriminate against the heavier 15N isotope. This leaves the cells 15N enriched compared to their supposed substrates, or total soil N. Selective uptake of enriched ammonium (as a result of nitrification) may contribute to the higher \\delta15N of the micro-organisms. We measured 15N natural abundances of the microbial biomass, using the chloroform-fumigation-extraction method, in grassland soils along an elevation gradient, a fire-disturbance gradient in Florida, a ponderosa forest restoration study, and a dung-gradient near a water source in desert grassland and found 0-12\\permil difference between the soil extractable N and the microbial biomass. We also found that the enrichment is quantitatively dependent on C availability. We speculate that, in addition to an indicator for C availability to the microbes, microbial transformations may explain the 15N-enrichment of soil organic matter with depth.

  14. Sensitivity enhancement in natural-abundance solid-state 33S MAS NMR spectroscopy employing adiabatic inversion pulses to the satellite transitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hansen, Michael Ryan; Brorson, Michael; Bildsøe, Henrik; Skibsted, Jørgen; Jakobsen, Hans J.

    2008-02-01

    The WURST (wideband uniform rate smooth truncation) and hyperbolic secant (HS) pulse elements have each been employed as pairs of inversion pulses to induce population transfer (PT) between the four energy levels in natural abundance solid-state 33S (spin I = 3/2) MAS NMR, thereby leading to a significant gain in intensity for the central transition (CT). The pair of inversion pulses are applied to the satellite transitions for a series of inorganic sulfates, the sulfate ions in the two cementitious materials ettringite and thaumasite, and the two tetrathiometallates (NH 4) 2WS 4 and (NH 4) 2MoS 4. These materials all exhibit 33S quadrupole coupling constants ( CQ) in the range 0.1-1.0 MHz, with precise CQ values being determined from analysis of the PT enhanced 33S MAS NMR spectra. The enhancement factors for the WURST and HS elements are quite similar and are all in the range 1.74-2.25 for the studied samples, in excellent agreement with earlier reports on HS enhancement factors (1.6-2.4) observed for other spin I = 3/2 nuclei with similar CQ values (0.3-1.2 MHz). Thus, a time saving in instrument time by a factor up to five has been achieved in natural abundance 33S MAS NMR, a time saving which is extremely welcome for this important low-γ nucleus.

  15. Sensitivity enhancement in natural-abundance solid-state 33S MAS NMR spectroscopy employing adiabatic inversion pulses to the satellite transitions.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Michael Ryan; Brorson, Michael; Bildsøe, Henrik; Skibsted, Jørgen; Jakobsen, Hans J

    2008-02-01

    The WURST (wideband uniform rate smooth truncation) and hyperbolic secant (HS) pulse elements have each been employed as pairs of inversion pulses to induce population transfer (PT) between the four energy levels in natural abundance solid-state (33)S (spin I=3/2) MAS NMR, thereby leading to a significant gain in intensity for the central transition (CT). The pair of inversion pulses are applied to the satellite transitions for a series of inorganic sulfates, the sulfate ions in the two cementitious materials ettringite and thaumasite, and the two tetrathiometallates (NH(4))(2)WS(4) and (NH(4))(2)MoS(4). These materials all exhibit (33)S quadrupole coupling constants (C(Q)) in the range 0.1-1.0 MHz, with precise C(Q) values being determined from analysis of the PT enhanced (33)S MAS NMR spectra. The enhancement factors for the WURST and HS elements are quite similar and are all in the range 1.74-2.25 for the studied samples, in excellent agreement with earlier reports on HS enhancement factors (1.6-2.4) observed for other spin I=3/2 nuclei with similar C(Q) values (0.3-1.2 MHz). Thus, a time saving in instrument time by a factor up to five has been achieved in natural abundance (33)S MAS NMR, a time saving which is extremely welcome for this important low-gamma nucleus. PMID:18082436

  16. Seasonal Abundance and Natural Inoculativity of Insect Vectors of Xylella fastidiosa in Oklahoma Tree Nurseries and Vineyards.

    PubMed

    Overall, Lisa M; Rebek, Eric J

    2015-12-01

    Xylella fastidiosa is the causative agent of diseases of perennial plants including peach, plum, elm, oak, pecan, and grape. This bacterial pathogen is transmitted by xylem-feeding insects. In recent years, Pierce's disease of grape has been detected in 10 counties in central and northeastern Oklahoma, prompting further investigation of the disease epidemiology in this state. We surveyed vineyards and tree nurseries in Oklahoma for potential insect vectors to determine species composition, infectivity, and natural inoculativity of commonly captured insect vectors. Yellow sticky cards were used to sample insect fauna at each location. Insects were removed from sticky cards and screened for X. fastidiosa using immunocapture-PCR to determine their infectivity. A second objective was to test the natural inoculativity of insect vectors that are found in vineyards. Graphocephala versuta (Say), Graphocephala coccinea (Forster), Paraulacizes irrorata (F.), Oncometopia orbona (F.), Cuerna costalis (F.), and Entylia carinata Germar were collected from vineyards and taken back to the lab to determine their natural inoculativity. Immunocapture-PCR was used to test plant and insect samples for presence of X. fastidiosa. The three most frequently captured species from vineyards and tree nurseries were G. versuta, Clastoptera xanthocephala Germar, and O. orbona. Of those insects screened for X. fastidiosa, 2.4% tested positive for the bacterium. Field-collected G. versuta were inoculative to both ragweed and alfalfa. Following a 7-d inoculation access period, a higher percentage of alfalfa became infected than ragweed. Results from this study provide insight into the epidemiology of X. fastidiosa in Oklahoma. PMID:26331482

  17. Seasonal Abundance and Natural Inoculativity of Insect Vectors of Xylella fastidiosa in Oklahoma Tree Nurseries and Vineyards.

    PubMed

    Overall, Lisa M; Rebek, Eric J

    2015-12-01

    Xylella fastidiosa is the causative agent of diseases of perennial plants including peach, plum, elm, oak, pecan, and grape. This bacterial pathogen is transmitted by xylem-feeding insects. In recent years, Pierce's disease of grape has been detected in 10 counties in central and northeastern Oklahoma, prompting further investigation of the disease epidemiology in this state. We surveyed vineyards and tree nurseries in Oklahoma for potential insect vectors to determine species composition, infectivity, and natural inoculativity of commonly captured insect vectors. Yellow sticky cards were used to sample insect fauna at each location. Insects were removed from sticky cards and screened for X. fastidiosa using immunocapture-PCR to determine their infectivity. A second objective was to test the natural inoculativity of insect vectors that are found in vineyards. Graphocephala versuta (Say), Graphocephala coccinea (Forster), Paraulacizes irrorata (F.), Oncometopia orbona (F.), Cuerna costalis (F.), and Entylia carinata Germar were collected from vineyards and taken back to the lab to determine their natural inoculativity. Immunocapture-PCR was used to test plant and insect samples for presence of X. fastidiosa. The three most frequently captured species from vineyards and tree nurseries were G. versuta, Clastoptera xanthocephala Germar, and O. orbona. Of those insects screened for X. fastidiosa, 2.4% tested positive for the bacterium. Field-collected G. versuta were inoculative to both ragweed and alfalfa. Following a 7-d inoculation access period, a higher percentage of alfalfa became infected than ragweed. Results from this study provide insight into the epidemiology of X. fastidiosa in Oklahoma.

  18. What's on the menu? Assessing microbial carbon sources and cycling in soils using natural abundance radiocarbon analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahmoudi, N.; Burns, L.; Mancini, S.; Fulthorpe, R.; Slater, G. F.

    2011-12-01

    Organic matter in soils is composed of diverse materials in various stages of decomposition. Soil organic matter is not in a single pool but rather in multiple carbon pools with different intrinsic turnover times that can be on annual to decadal and even millennial timescales. Microorganisms can influence the total amount of carbon stored in soils and the turnover rates of these different pools. However, the links between microbes and their ability to utilize these various carbon pools are not well understood. Moreover, microbes have been shown to co-utilize a number of available carbon sources rather than a single carbon source under soil conditions which creates difficulties in identifying microbial carbon sources in the natural environment. Compound-specific radiocarbon analysis of microbial phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) has become a useful tool in elucidating microbial carbon sources in complex environments with multiple carbon sources. We investigated microbial carbon cycling at an industrial site in Ontario which included a variety of carbon sources including vegetation, PAHs and natural organic matter (NOM). Using this approach, the 14C content of microbial membrane lipids (which reflects their carbon source) can be compared to surrounding carbon sources in order to assess which carbon source they are metabolizing and incorporating into their lipids. In addition, we assessed microbial community structure and diversity by analyzing amplified bacterial, eukaryotic and archaeal rDNA fragments with denaturing gel gradient electrophoresis (DGGE). The Δ14C value for PLFAs ranged from +54 to -697% which indicates that microbial carbon sources across soils differ. The Δ14CPLFA for some soils is consistent with modern carbon sources while Δ14CPLFA for other soils is consistent with natural organic matter including older pools of carbon. The microbial communities at this site are not metabolizing PAHs but rather they are utilizing various pools of natural organic

  19. On the nature of interface of carbon nanotube coated carbon fibers with different polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh Bedi, Harpreet; Padhee, Srikant S.; Agnihotri, Prabhat K.

    2016-07-01

    Experimental investigations are carried out to analyse the wetting behaviour of carbon nanotube (CNT) coated carbon fiber to determine their suitability to process carbon nanotube coated carbon fiber/polymer multiscale composites for structural applications. To overcome the problem of agglomeration, CNTs are grown directly on the surface of carbon fibers as well as fabric using thermal chemical vapour deposition (CVD) technique. The term multiscale is used because different reinforcement mechanisms operate at the scale of long fibers and CNTs which are of few micrometers in length. The load carrying capacity of these multiscale composites critically depends on the efficiency and extent of load transfer from low strength matrix to high strength fiber which in turn depends on the interfacial strength between CNT coated carbon fiber and polymer matrix. A systematic analysis of wetting behaviour of CNT coated carbon fiber with epoxy and polyester matrix is carried out in this study. It is shown that CNT coated carbon fibers as well as fabric show better wettability with epoxy matrix as compared to polyester matrix. This results in stronger interface of CNT coated carbon fiber with epoxy as compared to polyester in multiscale composite system. A similar observation is made in nanoindentation testing of single fiber multiscale composites processed with epoxy and polyester matrix. In addition, it is observed that wettability, interfacial strength and average properties of CNT coated carbon fiber/polymer composites are a function of CNT density on the surface of carbon fibers.

  20. The nature of protein interactions governing globular protein-polymer block copolymer self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Lam, Christopher N; Kim, Minkyu; Thomas, Carla S; Chang, Dongsook; Sanoja, Gabriel E; Okwara, Chimdimma U; Olsen, Bradley D

    2014-04-14

    The effects of protein surface potential on the self-assembly of protein-polymer block copolymers are investigated in globular proteins with controlled shape through two approaches: comparison of self-assembly of mCherry-poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (PNIPAM) bioconjugates with structurally homologous enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)-PNIPAM bioconjugates, and mutants of mCherry with altered electrostatic patchiness. Despite large changes in amino acid sequence, the temperature-concentration phase diagrams of EGFP-PNIPAM and mCherry-PNIPAM conjugates have similar phase transition concentrations. Both materials form identical phases at two different coil fractions below the PNIPAM thermal transition temperature and in the bulk. However, at temperatures above the thermoresponsive transition, mCherry conjugates form hexagonal phases at high concentrations while EGFP conjugates form a disordered micellar phase. At lower concentration, mCherry shows a two-phase region while EGFP forms homogeneous disordered micellar structures, reflecting the effect of changes in micellar stability. Conjugates of four mCherry variants with changes to their electrostatic surface patchiness also showed minimal change in phase behavior, suggesting that surface patchiness has only a small effect on the self-assembly process. Measurements of protein/polymer miscibility, second virial coefficients, and zeta potential show that these coarse-grained interactions are similar between mCherry and EGFP, indicating that coarse-grained interactions largely capture the relevant physics for soluble, monomeric globular protein-polymer conjugate self-assembly. PMID:24654888

  1. Determination of Natural 14C Abundances in Dissolved Organic Carbon in Organic-Rich Marine Sediment Porewaters by Thermal Sulfate Reduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, L.; Komada, T.

    2010-12-01

    The abundances of natural 14C in dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in the marine environment hold clues regarding the processes that influence the biogeochemical cycling of this large carbon reservoir. At present, UV irradiation is the widely accepted method for oxidizing seawater DOC for determination of their 14C abundances. This technique yields precise and accurate values with low blanks, but it requires a dedicated vacuum line, and hence can be difficult to implement. As an alternative technique that can be conducted on a standard preparatory vacuum line, we modified and tested a thermal sulfate reduction method that was previously developed to determine δ13C values of marine DOC (Fry B. et al., 1996. Analysis of marine DOC using a dry combustion method. Mar. Chem., 54: 191-201.) to determine the 14C abundances of DOC in marine sediment porewaters. In this method, the sample is dried in a 100 ml round-bottom Pyrex flask in the presence of excess oxidant (K2SO4) and acid (H3PO4), and combusted at 550 deg.C. The combustion products are cryogenically processed to collect and quantify CO2 using standard procedures. Materials we have oxidized to date range from 6-24 ml in volume, and 95-1500 μgC in size. The oxidation efficiency of this method was tested by processing known amounts of reagent-grade dextrose and sucrose (as examples of labile organic matter), tannic acid and humic acid (as examples of complex natural organic matter), and porewater DOC extracted from organic-rich nearshore sediments. The carbon yields for all of these materials averaged 99±4% (n=18). The 14C abundances of standard materials IAEA C-6 and IAEA C-5 processed by this method using >1mgC aliquots were within error of certified values. The size and the isotopic value of the blank were determined by a standard dilution technique using IAEA C-6 and IAEA C-5 that ranged in size from 150 to 1500 μgC (n=4 and 2, respectively). This yielded a blank size of 6.7±0.7 μgC, and a blank isotopic

  2. Effect of epoxidation level on thermal properties and ionic conductivity of epoxidized natural rubber solid polymer nanocomposite electrolytes

    SciTech Connect

    Harun, Fatin; Chan, Chin Han; Winie, Tan; Sim, Lai Har; Zainal, Nurul Fatahah Asyqin

    2015-08-28

    Effect of epoxide content on the thermal and conductivity properties of epoxidized natural rubber (ENR) solid polymer nanocomposite electrolytes was investigated. Commercial available epoxidized natural rubber having 25 (ENR25) and 50 mole% (ENR50) epoxide, respectively were incorporated with lithium perchlorate (LiClO{sub 4}) salt and titanium dioxide (TiO{sub 2}) nanofiller via solution casting method. The solid polymer nanocomposite electrolytes were characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and impedance spectroscopy (IS) for their thermal properties and conductivity, respectively. It was evident that introduction of LiClO{sub 4} causes a greater increase in glass transition temperature (T{sub g}) and ionic conductivity of ENR50 as compared to ENR25. Upon addition of TiO{sub 2} in ENR/LiClO{sub 4} system, a remarkable T{sub g} elevation was observed for both ENRs where ENR50 reveals a more pronounced changes. It is interesting to note that they exhibit different phenomenon in ionic conductivity with TiO{sub 2} loading where ENR25 shows enhancement of conductivity while ENR50 shows declination.

  3. Effect of epoxidation level on thermal properties and ionic conductivity of epoxidized natural rubber solid polymer nanocomposite electrolytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harun, Fatin; Chan, Chin Han; Sim, Lai Har; Winie, Tan; Zainal, Nurul Fatahah Asyqin

    2015-08-01

    Effect of epoxide content on the thermal and conductivity properties of epoxidized natural rubber (ENR) solid polymer nanocomposite electrolytes was investigated. Commercial available epoxidized natural rubber having 25 (ENR25) and 50 mole% (ENR50) epoxide, respectively were incorporated with lithium perchlorate (LiClO4) salt and titanium dioxide (TiO2) nanofiller via solution casting method. The solid polymer nanocomposite electrolytes were characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and impedance spectroscopy (IS) for their thermal properties and conductivity, respectively. It was evident that introduction of LiClO4 causes a greater increase in glass transition temperature (Tg) and ionic conductivity of ENR50 as compared to ENR25. Upon addition of TiO2 in ENR/LiClO4 system, a remarkable Tg elevation was observed for both ENRs where ENR50 reveals a more pronounced changes. It is interesting to note that they exhibit different phenomenon in ionic conductivity with TiO2 loading where ENR25 shows enhancement of conductivity while ENR50 shows declination.

  4. Natural and synthetic mineral silicates as functional nanoparticles in polymer composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shao, Hua

    A new strategy is described for the substantial enhancement of the barrier properties for both a thermoset epoxy polymer and a thermoplastic polyolefin by sandwiching a novel self-supported clay fabric film between thin polymer sheets. The success of this strategy is attributed to the high orientation of clay nanolayers in the paper-like clay fabric films and to the filling of the micro- or sub-micro sized voids between imperfectly tiled clay platelet edges by the polymer chains. Thermoplastic polyolefin-clay fabric film composites were fabricated by hot-pressing the clay films between two sheets of high density polyethylene (HDPE) films. The sandwiched composites exhibit more than a 30-fold decrease in O2 transmission rate with respect to the pure HDPE film. Impregnating the self-supported clay papers with epoxy pre-polymers successfully leads to thermoset composite films with more than 2-3 orders of magnitude reduction in O2 permeability in comparison to the pristine epoxy matrix. Owing to the promising use of synthetic Mg-saponite (denoted SAP) as epoxy polymer reinforcing agents, we investigated the cost-effective synthesis of SAP by replacing urea with sodium hydroxide as base source. Co-crystallization of new zeolite phases, such as garronite (denoted GIS) and cancrinite (denoted CAN), occurred along with SAP upon increasing the alkalinity of the reaction mixture. This finding represents the first example of the preparation of a CAN/SAP phase mixture. Moreover, pure-phase cancrinite with rod-like morphology up to several mum in length was synthesized under Mg-free conditions. Also, the Si/AI ratio within the synthesis gel has an influence on the chemical composition and textural properties of pure CAN crystals. Microporous cancrinite is a promising candidate for reinforcing epoxy polymers, considering that CAN represents a substantial fraction of the mixed CAN-SAP phase formed during the synthesis of saponite. Therefore, the reaction conditions (e

  5. The perils and promises of microbial abundance: novel natures and model ecosystems, from artisanal cheese to alien seas.

    PubMed

    Paxson, Heather; Helmreich, Stefan

    2014-04-01

    Microbial life has been much in the news. From outbreaks of Escherichia coli to discussions of the benefits of raw and fermented foods to recent reports of life forms capable of living in extreme environments, the modest microbe has become a figure for thinking through the presents and possible futures of nature, writ large as well as small. Noting that dominant representations of microbial life have shifted from an idiom of peril to one of promise, we argue that microbes--especially when thriving as microbial communities--are being upheld as model ecosystems in a prescriptive sense, as tokens of how organisms and human ecological relations with them could, should, or might be. We do so in reference to two case studies: the regulatory politics of artisanal cheese and the speculative research of astrobiology. To think of and with microbial communities as model ecosystems offers a corrective to the scientific determinisms we detect in some recent calls to attend to the materiality of scientific objects.

  6. Abundance and diversity of biofilms in natural and artificial aquifers of the Äspö Hard Rock Laboratory, Sweden.

    PubMed

    Jägevall, Sara; Rabe, Lisa; Pedersen, Karsten

    2011-02-01

    Six cores were drilled and retrieved from 186-m depth in the Äspö Hard Rock Laboratory (HRL) tunnel to investigate whether indigenous biofilms develop on fracture surfaces in groundwater-conducting aquifers in granitic rock. A clone library was constructed from fracture surface material (FSM), for community composition analysis. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) was applied to quantify gene copies using the 16S rRNA gene for domain Bacteria and the adenosine-phosphosulfate reductase gene (apsA) for sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB). Results were compared with three groundwater systems with biofilms in laminar flow reactors (LFRs) at 450-m depth in the Äspö HRL. The total number of cells, counted microscopically, was approximately 2 × 10(5) cells cm(-2) in the LFR systems, consistent with the obtained qPCR 16S rRNA gene copies. qPCR analysis reported ∼1 × 10(2) up to ∼1 × 10(4) gene copies cm(-2) on the FSM from the drill cores. In the FSM biofilms, 33% of the sequenced clones were related to the iron-reducing bacterium Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, while in the LFR biofilms, 41% of the sequenced clones were affiliated with the genera Desulfovibrio, Desulforhopalus, Desulfomicrobium, and Desulfobulbus. The community composition of the FSM biofilms differed from the drill water community, excluding drill water contamination. This work reports significant numbers of microorganisms on natural hard rock aquifer fracture surfaces with site-specific community compositions. The probability that biofilms are generally present in groundwater-conducting aquifers in deep granitic rock is consequently great.

  7. Effect of petroleum products on the decomposition of soil organic matter as assessed by 13C natural abundance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stelmach, Wioleta; Szarlip, Paweł; Trembaczowski, Andrzej; Bieganowski, Andrzej

    2016-04-01

    Petroleum products are common contaminants in soils due to human activities. They are toxic for microorganisms and threat their functions, including decomposition of soil organic matter (SOM). The direct estimation of altered SOM decomposition - based on the CO2 emission - is impossible after oil contamination, because oil decomposition also contributes to the CO2 release. We used the natural differences in the isotopic signature (δ13C) of SOM and of oil products to partition the total CO2 for both sources and to analyze the suppression of SOM decomposition. The dynamics of 13C fractionation during the mineralization of gasoline and diesel was measured during 42 days. The 13C fractionation varied between -8.8‰ and +3.6‰ within the first 10 days, and stabilized thereafter at about -5.3‰ for gasoline and +3.2‰ for diesel. These 13C fractionations and δ13C values of CO2 emitted from the soil were used for correct partitioning of the total CO2. Contamination with gasoline reduced the CO2 efflux from SOM decomposition by a factor of 25 (from 151 to 6 mg C-CO2 kg-1 soil during 42 days). The negative effect of diesel was much lower: the CO2 efflux from SOM was decreased by less than a factor of 2. The strong effect of gasoline versus diesel reflects the lower absorption of gasoline to mineral particles and the development of a thin film on water surfaces, leading to toxicity for microorganisms. We conclude that the small differences of 13C of SOM and of organic pollutants can be used to partition CO2 fluxes and analyze pollutant effects on SOM decomposition.

  8. Effect of petroleum products on the decomposition of soil organic matter as assessed by 13C natural abundance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stelmach, Wioleta; Szarlip, Paweł; Trembaczowski, Andrzej; Bieganowski, Andrzej

    2016-04-01

    Petroleum products are common contaminants in soils due to human activities. They are toxic for microorganisms and threat their functions, including decomposition of soil organic matter (SOM). The direct estimation of altered SOM decomposition - based on the CO2 emission - is impossible after oil contamination, because oil decomposition also contributes to the CO2 release. We used the natural differences in the isotopic signature (δ13C) of SOM and of oil products to partition the total CO2 for both sources and to analyze the suppression of SOM decomposition. The dynamics of 13C fractionation during the mineralization of gasoline and diesel was measured during 42 days. The 13C fractionation varied between -8.8‰ and +3.6‰ within the first 10 days, and stabilized thereafter at about -5.3‰ for gasoline and +3.2‰ for diesel. These 13C fractionations and δ13C values of CO2 emitted from the soil were used for correct partitioning of the total CO2. Contamination with gasoline reduced the CO2 efflux from SOM decomposition by a factor of 25 (from 151 to 6 mg C-CO2 kg‑1 soil during 42 days). The negative effect of diesel was much lower: the CO2 efflux from SOM was decreased by less than a factor of 2. The strong effect of gasoline versus diesel reflects the lower absorption of gasoline to mineral particles and the development of a thin film on water surfaces, leading to toxicity for microorganisms. We conclude that the small differences of 13C of SOM and of organic pollutants can be used to partition CO2 fluxes and analyze pollutant effects on SOM decomposition.

  9. Earthworm eco-physiological characteristics and quantification of earthworm feeding in vermifiltration system for sewage sludge stabilization using stable isotopic natural abundance.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiaowei; Xing, Meiyan; Yang, Jian; Dai, Xiaohu

    2014-07-15

    Previous studies showed that the presence of earthworm improves treatment performance of vermifilter (VF) for sewage sludge stabilization, but earthworm eco-physiological characteristics and effects in VF were not fully investigated. In this study, earthworm population, enzymatic activity, gut microbial community and stable isotopic abundance were investigated in the VF. Results showed that biomass, average weight, number and alkaline phosphatase activity of the earthworms tended to decrease, while protein content and activities of peroxidase and catalase had an increasing tendency as the VF depth. Earthworm gut microbial communities were dominated by Gammaproteobacteria, and the percentages arrived to 76-92% of the microbial species detected. (15)N and (13)C natural abundance of the earthworms decreased with operation time, and increased as the VF depth. Quantitative analysis using δ(15)N showed that earthworm feeding and earthworm-microorganism interaction were responsible for approximately 21% and 79%, respectively, of the enhanced volatile suspended solid reduction due to the presence of earthworm. The finding provides a quantitative insight into how earthworms influence on sewage sludge stabilization in vermifiltration system.

  10. High-performance polymers from nature: catalytic routes and processes for industry.

    PubMed

    Walther, Guido

    2014-08-01

    It is difficult to imagine life today without polymers. However, most chemicals are almost exclusively synthesized from petroleum. With diminishing oil reserves, establishing an industrial process to transform renewables into high-value chemicals may be more challenging than running a car without gasoline. This is due to the difficulty in setting up processes that are novel, profitable, and environmentally benign at the same time. Additionally, the quest for sustainability of renewable resources should be based on incorporating ethical considerations in the development of plans that utilize feedstocks intended for human nutrition and health. Thus, it is important to use bio-energy containing renewable resources in the most efficient way. This Concept goes beyond the synthesis of monomers and provides insights for establishing an industrial process that transforms renewable resources into high-value chemicals, and it describes careful investigations that are of paramount importance, including evaluations from an economical and an ecological perspective. The synthesis of monomers suitable for polymer production from renewable resources would ideally be accompanied by a reduction in CO2 emission and waste, through the complete molecular utilization of the feedstock. This Concept advocates the drop-in strategy, and is guided by the example of catalytically synthesized dimethyl 1,19-nonadecanedioate and its α,ω-functionalized derivatives. With respect to the Twelve Principles of Green Chemistry, this Concept describes a technological leap forward for a sustainable green chemical industry. PMID:25049162

  11. High-performance polymers from nature: catalytic routes and processes for industry.

    PubMed

    Walther, Guido

    2014-08-01

    It is difficult to imagine life today without polymers. However, most chemicals are almost exclusively synthesized from petroleum. With diminishing oil reserves, establishing an industrial process to transform renewables into high-value chemicals may be more challenging than running a car without gasoline. This is due to the difficulty in setting up processes that are novel, profitable, and environmentally benign at the same time. Additionally, the quest for sustainability of renewable resources should be based on incorporating ethical considerations in the development of plans that utilize feedstocks intended for human nutrition and health. Thus, it is important to use bio-energy containing renewable resources in the most efficient way. This Concept goes beyond the synthesis of monomers and provides insights for establishing an industrial process that transforms renewable resources into high-value chemicals, and it describes careful investigations that are of paramount importance, including evaluations from an economical and an ecological perspective. The synthesis of monomers suitable for polymer production from renewable resources would ideally be accompanied by a reduction in CO2 emission and waste, through the complete molecular utilization of the feedstock. This Concept advocates the drop-in strategy, and is guided by the example of catalytically synthesized dimethyl 1,19-nonadecanedioate and its α,ω-functionalized derivatives. With respect to the Twelve Principles of Green Chemistry, this Concept describes a technological leap forward for a sustainable green chemical industry.

  12. Carbon kinetic isotope effects at natural abundances during iron-catalyzed photolytic cleavage of Csbnd C bonds in aqueous phase α,ω-dicarboxylic acids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Irei, Satoshi

    2016-09-01

    Carbon kinetic isotope effects (KIEs) at natural abundances during photolysis of Fe3+-oxalato, malonato, and succinato complexes in aqueous solution were studied to identify the Csbnd C bond cleaving mechanism of Fe3+-oxalato complexes under sunlight irradiation. Observed overall KIEs were 5.9‰, 11.5‰, and 8.4‰, respectively. This variation is inconsistent with secondary carbon KIEs for the Fesbnd O bond cleavage, but consistent with primary carbon KIEs for sequential cleavage of Fesbnd O and Csbnd C bonds. Position-specific probability of 13C content estimated KIEs of 5.9‰, 17.2‰, and 17‰ for 12Csbnd 13C bond cleavage, respectively, indicating the different KIEs for carboxyl-carboxyl and methyl-carboxyl cleavage.

  13. Visualization of enantiomers using natural abundant (13)C-filtered single and double quantum selective refocusing experiments: Application to small chiral molecules.

    PubMed

    Nath, Nilamoni; Baishya, Bikash; Suryaprakash, N

    2009-09-01

    The routine use of proton NMR for the visualization of enantiomers, aligned in the chiral liquid crystal solvent poly-gamma-benzyl-l-glutamate (PBLG), is restricted due to severe loss of resolution arising from large number of pair wise interaction of nuclear spins. In the present study, we have designed two experimental techniques for their visualization utilizing the natural abundance (13)C edited selective refocusing of single quantum (CH-SERF) and double quantum (CH-DQSERF) coherences. The methods achieve chiral discrimination and aid in the simultaneous determination of homonuclear couplings between active and passive spins and heteronuclear couplings between the excited protons and the participating (13)C spin. The CH-SERF also overcomes the problem of overlap of central transitions of the methyl selective refocusing (SERF) experiment resulting in better chiral discrimination. Theoretical description of the evolution of magnetization in both the sequences has been discussed using polarization operator formalism.

  14. Changes in Natural Abundance Carbon Stable isotopes of Human Blood and Saliva After 24 Days of Controlled Carbohydrate Supplementation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kraft, R. A.; Jahren, A. H.; Baer, D. J.; Caballero, B.

    2008-12-01

    the δ13C value of their blood and saliva relative to baseline: blood clot was enriched by 0.27‰; blood serum by 0.50‰ and saliva by 1.12‰. We believe this overall enrichment resulted from a 13C-enriched bulk diet (δ13C = - 20.42‰) relative to the subjects free-living diet. Evidence for this derives from inspection of foods within the bulk diet provided, compared to published profiles of the typical American diet. We will discuss possible complicating factors, such as differential absorption and metabolism of the supplements according to solubility and caloric value. These results are encouraging for the development of a δ13C blood serum biomarker that, in the company of other tests, could be used to indicate a change in carbohydrate intake. Bray, G.A., Nielsen, S.J. and Popkin, B.M., 2004. Consumption of high-fructose corn syrup in beverages may play a role in the epidemic of obesity. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 79: 537-543. Havel, P.J., 2005. Dietary fructose: Implications for dysregulation of energy homeostasis and lipid/carbohydrate metabolism. Nutrition Reviews, 63(5): 133-157. Tilman D., 1998. The greening of the green revolution. Nature, 396:211-212.

  15. Combustion influences on natural abundance nitrogen isotope ratio in soil and plants following a wildfire in a sub-alpine ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Huber, Edith; Bell, Tina L; Adams, Mark A

    2013-11-01

    This before-and-after-impact study uses the natural abundance N isotope ratio (δ(15)N) to investigate the effects of a wildfire on sub-alpine ecosystem properties and processes. We measured the (15)N signatures of soil, charred organic material, ash and foliage in three sub-alpine plant communities (grassland, heathland and woodland) in south-eastern Australia. Surface bulk soil was temporarily enriched in (15)N immediately after wildfire compared to charred organic material and ash in all plant communities. We associated the enrichment of bulk soil with fractionation of N during combustion and volatilization of N, a process that also explains the sequential enrichment of (15)N of unburnt leaves > ash > charred organic material in relation to duration and intensity of heating. The rapid decline in (15)N of bulk soil to pre-fire values indicates that depleted ash, containing considerable amounts of total N, was readily incorporated into the soil. Foliar δ(15)N also increased with values peaking 1 year post-fire. Foliar enrichment was foremost coupled with the release of enriched NH4(+) into the soil owing to isotopic discrimination during volatilization of soluble N and combustion of organic material. The mode of post-fire regeneration influenced foliar (15)N enrichment in two species indicating use of different sources of N following fire. The use of natural abundance of (15)N in soil, ash and foliage as a means of tracing transformation of N during wildfire has established the importance of combustion products as an important, albeit temporary source of inorganic N for plants regenerating after wildfire. PMID:23649752

  16. Combustion influences on natural abundance nitrogen isotope ratio in soil and plants following a wildfire in a sub-alpine ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Huber, Edith; Bell, Tina L; Adams, Mark A

    2013-11-01

    This before-and-after-impact study uses the natural abundance N isotope ratio (δ(15)N) to investigate the effects of a wildfire on sub-alpine ecosystem properties and processes. We measured the (15)N signatures of soil, charred organic material, ash and foliage in three sub-alpine plant communities (grassland, heathland and woodland) in south-eastern Australia. Surface bulk soil was temporarily enriched in (15)N immediately after wildfire compared to charred organic material and ash in all plant communities. We associated the enrichment of bulk soil with fractionation of N during combustion and volatilization of N, a process that also explains the sequential enrichment of (15)N of unburnt leaves > ash > charred organic material in relation to duration and intensity of heating. The rapid decline in (15)N of bulk soil to pre-fire values indicates that depleted ash, containing considerable amounts of total N, was readily incorporated into the soil. Foliar δ(15)N also increased with values peaking 1 year post-fire. Foliar enrichment was foremost coupled with the release of enriched NH4(+) into the soil owing to isotopic discrimination during volatilization of soluble N and combustion of organic material. The mode of post-fire regeneration influenced foliar (15)N enrichment in two species indicating use of different sources of N following fire. The use of natural abundance of (15)N in soil, ash and foliage as a means of tracing transformation of N during wildfire has established the importance of combustion products as an important, albeit temporary source of inorganic N for plants regenerating after wildfire.

  17. Polymer blends made of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate) and epoxidized natural rubber: Thermal and mechanical response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salim, Yoga Sugama; Han, Chan Chin; Kammer, Hans-Werner; Kumar, Sudesh; Neon, Gan Seng

    2015-08-01

    The ever-increasing demand of biodegradable over conventional polymers places microbial polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) as an ideal choice of research material for specific applications. In this study, polymer blends made of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyhexanoate) [P(3HB-co-3HHx) and epoxidized natural rubber (ENR) were prepared using solution casting technique. The influence of ENR on thermal, morphological and mechanical properties of P(3HB-co-3HHx) was investigated. There are two glass transition (Tg) temperatures observed using differential scanning calorimeter. This indicates that P(3HB-co-3HHx) and ENR are immiscible at macroscopic level. Although the Tg of P(3HB-co-3HHx) is seen to shift toward ENR in the least manner, infrared analysis suggests that the crystal structure of P(3HB-co-3HHx) retains its conformational structure. In terms of morphology, ENR exists as droplets in P(3HB-co-3HHx)-rich phase, e.g. at ENR weight fraction (wENR) of 0.3. In dynamic mechanical analysis, all blend compositions exhibit solid-like behavior, with storage moduli larger than loss moduli, across the frequency sweep at room temperature.

  18. Natural macromolecule based carboxymethyl cellulose as a gel polymer electrolyte with adjustable porosity for lithium ion batteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Y. S.; Xiao, S. Y.; Li, M. X.; Chang, Z.; Wang, F. X.; Gao, J.; Wu, Y. P.

    2015-08-01

    A porous membrane of carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) from natural macromolecule as a host of a gel polymer electrolyte for lithium ion batteries is reported. It is prepared, for the first time, by a simple non-solvent evaporation method and its porous structure is fine-adjusted by varying the composition ratio of the solvent and non-solvent mixture. The electrolyte uptake of the porous membrane based on CMC is 75.9%. The ionic conductivity of the as-prepared gel membrane saturated with 1 mol L-1 LiPF6 electrolyte at room temperature can be up to 0.48 mS cm-1. Moreover, the lithium ion transference in the gel membrane at room temperature is as high as 0.46, much higher than 0.27 for the commercial separator Celgard 2730. When evaluated by using LiFePO4 cathode, the prepared gel membrane exhibits very good electrochemical performance including higher reversible capacity, better rate capability and good cycling behaviour. The obtained results suggest that this porous polymer membrane shows great attraction to the lithium ion batteries requiring high safety, low cost and environmental friendliness.

  19. Revealing the Supramolecular Nature of Side-Chain Terpyridine-Functionalized Polymer Networks

    PubMed Central

    Brassinne, Jérémy; Jochum, Florian D.; Fustin, Charles-André; Gohy, Jean-François

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, finely controlling the mechanical properties of polymeric materials is possible by incorporating supramolecular motifs into their architecture. In this context, the synthesis of a side-chain terpyridine-functionalized poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) is reported via reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer polymerization. By addition of transition metal ions, concentrated aqueous solutions of this polymer turn into metallo-supramolecular hydrogels whose dynamic mechanical properties are investigated by rotational rheometry. Hence, the possibility for the material to relax mechanical constrains via dissociation of transient cross-links is brought into light. In addition, the complex phenomena occurring under large oscillatory shear are interpreted in the context of transient networks. PMID:25569082

  20. Electrospinning process: Versatile preparation method for biodegradable and natural polymers and biocomposite systems applied in tissue engineering and drug delivery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogina, Anamarija

    2014-03-01

    Over the past two decades, the electrospinning process has shown a great potential in various applications, such as membrane filtration, catalytic processes, fibrous-sensor applications, drug delivery and tissue engineering, due to ability of facile producing high surface-to-volume fibrous structure. The most appealing electrospinning characteristic has shown to be the mimicking nano-scale fibrous topography of extracellular matrix (ECM) in tissue engineering field. The wide range of electrospinnable synthetic biodegradable and natural polymers offers fabrication of fibrous nano-structures with specific biological responses and mechanical properties. Conducting different processing parameters (needle geometry, tip-to-collector distance, electric field strength, collector composition and geometry) allows the altering of fiber size, density, alignment and overall morphology. So far, electrospinning process has shown limitless application in tissue engineering and drug delivery. The following review has been focused on studies of electrospinning process as the most promising fabrication technique for tissue engineering and drug delivery applications.

  1. A green and environment-friendly gel polymer electrolyte with higher performances based on the natural matrix of lignin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Sheng-Dong; Huang, Yun; Cao, Hai-Jun; Lin, Yuan-Hua; Li, Yang; Tang, Shui-Hua; Wang, Ming-Shan; Li, Xing

    2016-03-01

    In order to explore one truly green and environment-friendly gel polymer electrolyte (GPE), the natural biopolymer of lignin is firstly all over the world used as matrix to prepare GPE. The electrolyte membrane based on lignin can be easily fabricated just with lignin, liquid electrolyte and distilled water. Through comprehensive investigation of obtained GPE, it is found that the liquid electrolyte uptake reaches up to 230 wt.%; before 100 °C, GPE does not lose any weight and is thermal stable; at room temperature the ion conductivity is 3.73 mS cm-1; the amazing property of lithium ion transference number is high up to 0.85; GPE expresses complete electrochemical stability before 7.5 V and favorable compatibility with lithium anode; the outstanding cell performance of C-rate and cycle capacity. All these remarkably excellent performances endow lignin with application potential in GPE used in lithium ion batteries (LIBs) with higher performances.

  2. Position-Specific Isotope Analysis of Xanthines: A (13)C Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Method to Determine the (13)C Intramolecular Composition at Natural Abundance.

    PubMed

    Diomande, Didier G; Martineau, Estelle; Gilbert, Alexis; Nun, Pierrick; Murata, Ariaki; Yamada, Keita; Watanabe, Naoharu; Tea, Illa; Robins, Richard J; Yoshida, Naohiro; Remaud, Gérald S

    2015-07-01

    The natural xanthines caffeine, theobromine, and theophylline are of major commercial importance as flavor constituents in coffee, cocoa, tea, and a number of other beverages. However, their exploitation for authenticity, a requirement in these commodities that have a large origin-based price-range, by the standard method of isotope ratio monitoring by mass spectrometry (irm-MS) is limited. We have now developed a methodology that overcomes this deficit that exploits the power of isotopic quantitative (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometry combined with chemical modification of the xanthines to enable the determination of positional intramolecular (13)C/(12)C ratios (δ(13)Ci) with high precision. However, only caffeine is amenable to analysis: theobromine and theophylline present substantial difficulties due to their poor solubility. However, their N-methylation to caffeine makes spectral acquisition feasible. The method is confirmed as robust, with good repeatability of the δ(13)Ci values in caffeine appropriate for isotope fractionation measurements at natural abundance. It is shown that there is negligible isotope fractionation during the chemical N-methylation procedure. Thus, the method preserves the original positional δ(13)Ci values. The method has been applied to measure the position-specific variation of the (13)C/(12)C distribution in caffeine. Not only is a clear difference between caffeine isolated from different sources observed, but theobromine from cocoa is found to show a (13)C pattern distinct from that of caffeine. PMID:26067163

  3. A multipurpose natural and renewable polymer in medical applications: Bacterial cellulose.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira Barud, Hélida Gomes; da Silva, Robson Rosa; da Silva Barud, Hernane; Tercjak, Agnieszka; Gutierrez, Junkal; Lustri, Wilton Rogério; de Oliveira, Osmir Batista; Ribeiro, Sidney J L

    2016-11-20

    Bacterial cellulose (BC) produced by some bacteria, among them Gluconacetobacter xylinum, which secrets an abundant 3D networks fibrils, represents an interesting emerging biocompatible nanomaterial. Since its discovery BC has shown tremendous potential in a wide range of biomedical applications, such as artificial skin, artificial blood vessels and microvessels, wound dressing, among others. BC can be easily manipulated to improve its properties and/or functionalities resulting in several BC based nanocomposites. As example BC/collagen, BC/gelatin, BC/Fibroin, BC/Chitosan, etc. Thus, the aim of this review is to discuss about the applicability in biomedicine by demonstrating a variety of forms of this biopolymer highlighting in detail some qualities of bacterial cellulose. Therefore, various biomedical applications ranging from implants and scaffolds, carriers for drug delivery, wound-dressing materials, etc. that were reported until date will be presented. PMID:27561512

  4. A multipurpose natural and renewable polymer in medical applications: Bacterial cellulose.

    PubMed

    de Oliveira Barud, Hélida Gomes; da Silva, Robson Rosa; da Silva Barud, Hernane; Tercjak, Agnieszka; Gutierrez, Junkal; Lustri, Wilton Rogério; de Oliveira, Osmir Batista; Ribeiro, Sidney J L

    2016-11-20

    Bacterial cellulose (BC) produced by some bacteria, among them Gluconacetobacter xylinum, which secrets an abundant 3D networks fibrils, represents an interesting emerging biocompatible nanomaterial. Since its discovery BC has shown tremendous potential in a wide range of biomedical applications, such as artificial skin, artificial blood vessels and microvessels, wound dressing, among others. BC can be easily manipulated to improve its properties and/or functionalities resulting in several BC based nanocomposites. As example BC/collagen, BC/gelatin, BC/Fibroin, BC/Chitosan, etc. Thus, the aim of this review is to discuss about the applicability in biomedicine by demonstrating a variety of forms of this biopolymer highlighting in detail some qualities of bacterial cellulose. Therefore, various biomedical applications ranging from implants and scaffolds, carriers for drug delivery, wound-dressing materials, etc. that were reported until date will be presented.

  5. Measurement of nitrogen fixation by soybean in the field using the ureide and natural sup 15 N abundance methods. [Glycine max (L. )

    SciTech Connect

    Herridge, D.F. ); Bergersen, F.J.; Peoples, M.B. )

    1990-06-01

    Nitrogen fixation by field-grown soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merrill) was assessed by the natural {sup 15}N abundance and ureide methods. The field sites (five) and genotypes (six, plus two levels of inoculation on Bragg) were chosen to provide a range of proportions of plant N derived from nitrogen fixation (P). Genotypes K466, K468, nts 1007, and nts 1116 and Davis were included on the basis of their reported tolerance of the suppressive effects of nitrate on nodulation and nitrogen fixation. Bragg was included as a nitrate-sensitive genotype. Seeds of all genotypes were inoculated at sowing with Bradyrhizobium japonicum CB1809 (USDA 136). Amounts of nitrate in the soil profile (0-1.2 meter depth) at sowing ranged from 70 (site 3) to 278 kilograms per hectare (site 5), resulting in large effects on plant nodulation, on the {delta}{sup 15}N values of nodulated plants, on the relative abundance of ureide-N in vacuum-extracted sap (VES) and stem extracts, and finally on the estimates of P. There was no relationship between amount of soil nitrate at sowing and the {delta}{sup 15}N of the plant-available soil N. Correlation matrices of the measured and calculated parameters indicated generally weak correlations between crop growth (dry matter and N) and the parameters of symbiotic activity (nodule weight, {delta}{sup 15}N, relative ureide-N); correlations were strong and highly significant between nodulation and the measures of nitrogen fixation. Estimates of P ranged between 0 and 68% ({delta}{sup 15}N) and between 6 and 56% (ureide) and were highly correlated.

  6. Fast and high-resolution stereochemical analysis by nonuniform sampling and covariance processing of anisotropic natural abundance 2D 2H NMR datasets.

    PubMed

    Lafon, Olivier; Hu, Bingwen; Amoureux, Jean-Paul; Lesot, Philippe

    2011-06-01

    Natural abundance deuterium (NAD) 2D NMR spectroscopy using chiral or achiral liquid crystals is an efficient analytical tool for the stereochemical analysis of enantio- or diastereomers by the virtue of proton-to-deuterium substitution. In particular, it allows the measurement of enantiopurity of organic synthetic molecules or the determination of the natural isotopic (1)H/(2)H fractionation in biological molecules, such as fatty acid methyl esters (FAME). So far, the NAD 2D spectra of solutes were acquired by using uniform sampling (US) and processed by conventional 2D Fourier transform (FT), which could result in long measurement times for medium-sized analytes or low solute concentrations. Herein, we demonstrate that this conventional approach can be advantageously replaced by nonuniform sampling (NUS) processed by covariance (Cov) transform. This original spectral reconstruction provides a significant enhancement of spectral resolution, as well as a reduction of measurement times. The application of Cov to NUS data has required the introduction of a regularization procedure in the time domain for the indirect dimension. The analytical potential of combining Cov and NUS is demonstrated by measuring the enantiomeric excess of a scalemic mixture of 2-ethyloxirane and by determining the diastereomeric excess of methyl vernoleate, a natural FAME. These two organic compounds were aligned in a polypeptide (poly(γ-benzyl-L-glutamate)) mesophase. In the case of NAD 2D NMR spectroscopy, we show that Cov and NUS methods allow a decrease in measurement time by a factor of two compared with Cov applied to US data and a factor of four compared with FT applied to US data.

  7. A bifractal nature of reticular patterns induced by oxygen plasma on polymer films

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Junwan; Lee, I. J.

    2015-01-01

    Plasma etching was demonstrated to be a promising tool for generating self-organized nano-patterns on various commercial films. Unfortunately, dynamic scaling approach toward fundamental understanding of the formation and growth of the plasma-induced nano-structure has not always been straightforward. The temporal evolution of self-aligned nano-patterns may often evolve with an additional scale-invariance, which leads to breakdown of the well-established dynamic scaling law. The concept of a bifractal interface is successfully applied to reticular patterns induced by oxygen plasma on the surface of polymer films. The reticular pattern, composed of nano-size self-aligned protuberances and underlying structure, develops two types of anomalous dynamic scaling characterized by super-roughening and intrinsic anomalous scaling, respectively. The diffusion and aggregation of short-cleaved chains under the plasma environment are responsible for the regular distribution of the nano-size protuberances. Remarkably, it is uncovered that the dynamic roughening of the underlying structure is governed by a relaxation mechanism described by the Edwards-Wilkinson universality class with a conservative noise. The evidence for the basic phase, characterized by the negative roughness and growth exponents, has been elusive since its first theoretical consideration more than two decades ago. PMID:25997075

  8. Revealing the 3D internal structure of natural polymer microcomposites using X-ray ultra microtomography.

    PubMed

    Pakzad, A; Parikh, N; Heiden, P A; Yassar, R S

    2011-07-01

    Properties of composite materials are directly affected by the spatial arrangement of reinforcement and matrix. In this research, partially hydrolysed cellulose microcrystals were used to fabricate polycaprolactone microcomposites. The spatial distribution of cellulose microcrystals was characterized by a newly developed technique of X-ray ultra microscopy and microtomography. The phase and absorption contrast imaging of X-ray ultra microscopy revealed two-dimensional and three-dimensional information on CMC distribution in polymer matrices. The highest contrast and flux (signal-to-noise ratio) were obtained using vanadium foil targets with the accelerating voltage of 30 keV and beam current of >200 nA. The spatial distribution of cellulose microcrystals was correlated to the mechanical properties of the microcomposites. It was observed that heterogeneous distribution and clustering of cellulose microcrystals resulted in degradation of tensile strength and elastic modulus of composites. The utilization of X-ray ultra microscopy can open up new opportunities for composite researchers to explore the internal structure of microcomposites. X-ray ultra microscopy sample preparation is relatively simple in comparison to transmission electron microscopy and the spatial information is gathered at much larger scale.

  9. Molecular Investigation of the Short-term Sequestration of Natural Abundance 13C -labelled Cow Dung in the Surface Horizons of a Temperate Grassland Soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dungait, J.; Bol, R.; Evershed, R. P.

    2004-12-01

    An adequate understanding of the carbon (C) sequestration potential of grasslands requires that the quantity and residence times of C inputs be measured. Herbivore dung is largely comprised of plant cell wall material, a significant source of stable C in intensively grazed temperate grassland ecosystems that contributes to the soil carbon budget. Our work uses compound-specific isotope analysis to identify the pattern of input of dung-derived compounds from natural abundance 13C/-labelled cow dung into the surface horizons of a temperate grassland soil over one year. C4 dung (δ 13C \\-12.6 ‰ ) from maize fed cows was applied to a temperate grassland surface (δ 13C \\-29.95 ‰ ) at IGER-North Wyke (Devon, UK), and dung remains and soil cores beneath the treatments collected at ŧ = 7, 14, 28, 56, 112, 224 and 372 days. Bulk dung carbon present in the 0\\-1 cm and 1\\-5 cm surface horizons of a grassland soil over one year was estimated using Δ 13C between C4 dung and C3 dung, after Bol {\\et al.} (2000). The major biochemical components of dung were quantified using proximate forage fibre analyses, after Goering and Van Soest (1970) and identified using `wet' chemical and GC-MS methods. Plant cell wall polysaccharides and lignin were found to account for up to 67 {%} of dung dry matter. Hydrolysed polysaccharides were prepared as alditol acetates for analyses (after Docherty {\\et al.}, 2001), and a novel application of an off-line pyrolysis method applied to measure lignin-derived phenolic compounds (after Poole & van Bergen, 2002). This paper focuses on major events in the incorporation of dung carbon, estimated using natural abundance 13C&-slash;labelling technique. This revealed a major bulk input of dung carbon after a period of significant rainfall with a consequent decline in bulk soil δ 13C values until the end of the experiment (Dungait {\\et al.}, submitted). Findings will be presented revealing contribution of plant cell wall polysaccharides and

  10. FRET-capable supramolecular polymers based on a BODIPY-bridged pillar[5]arene dimer with BODIPY guests for mimicking the light-harvesting system of natural photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Meng, Lu-Bo; Li, Dongqi; Xiong, Shuhan; Hu, Xiao-Yu; Wang, Leyong; Li, Guigen

    2015-03-18

    AA/BB-type and A2/B3-type FRET-capable supramolecular polymers based on a BODIPY-bridged pillar[5]arene dimer and two BODIPY derivative guests have been successfully constructed and their application in mimicking the light-harvesting system of natural photosynthesis was studied. PMID:25690934

  11. Clinical Performance of a Dermal Filler Containing Natural Glycolic Acid and a Polylactic Acid Polymer

    PubMed Central

    Macchetto, Pedro Cervantes; Durán Páramo, Rosa Margarita

    2010-01-01

    Lipoatrophy is a condition that affects certain individuals, most commonly those who are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus.1–3 Injectable fillers are used for the treatment of these dermal contour deformities to smooth dermal depressions formed by the loss of volume. These dermal fillers (also known as soft tissue augmentation devices) can correct contour deformities caused by lipoatrophy in patients who are human immunodeficiency virus positive or negative. The product used in this study is a patented, second-generation, injectable, dermal collagen stimulator that combines glycolic acid and polylactic acid. The glycolic acid used is not a polymer, but rather an acid derived from sugar cane. Its chemical structure corresponds to that of an alpha-hydroxy acid. Glycolic acid is a well-characterized agent that is present in a number of cosmetic products. Polylactic acid is a synthetic, biocompatible, biodegradable, inert, synthetic polymer from the poly a-hydroxy-acid family that is believed to stimulate fibroblasts to produce more collagen, thus increasing facial volume. Together, polylactic acid and glycolic acid act in concert to 1) stimulate collagen production and 2) hydrate the outer layers of the skin. A multicenter, clinical investigation authorized by the Mexican Secretariat of Health was conducted between September 20, 2002, and September 19, 2004. This clinical study was conducted in male patients between 32 and 60 years of age with lipoatrophy as a result of highly active antiretroviral therapy for human immunodeficiency virus infection. The study objective was to measure the improvement of contour deformities after the injection of a dermal collagen stimulator containing glycolic acid and polylactic acid. In addition to safety, this dermal filler was assessed when used to correct volume deformities caused by lipoatrophy in subjects who are human immunodeficiency virus positive. Thirty male subjects participated and were treated as follows

  12. Thermodynamic studies of the solvent effects in chromatography on molecularly imprinted polymers. 3. Nature of the organic mobile phase

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Hyunjung; Guiochon, Georges A

    2005-04-01

    Experimental isotherm data of the Fmoc-tryptophan (Fmoc-Trp) enantiomers were measured by frontal analysis on a Fmoc-L-Trp imprinted polymer, using different organic mobile phases, in a wide concentration range. The nonlinear regression of the data and the independent calculation of the affinity energy distributions of the two enantiomers allowed the selection of the isotherm model and the determination of the isotherm parameters. The organic solvents studied were acetonitrile (MeCN), methylene chloride, chloroform, and tetrahydrofuran (THF), all in the presence of the same concentration of acetic acid, used as an organic modifier. It was found that the highest overall affinity and enantiomeric selectivity were obtained in MeCN, which is also the solvent used in the polymerization. In the other solvents, the overall affinity decreases with increasing hydrogen-bonding ability of the solvents but not the enantiomer selectivity. In MeCN, three types of adsorption sites coexist for the two enantiomers on the MIP. The highest energy sites for Fmoc-L-Trp in MeCN are inactive in CH{sub 2}Cl{sub 2}, CHCl{sub 3}, and THF, and only two types of sites were identified in these solvents. Increasing the acetic acid concentration from 0.2 to 0.9 M causes a large decrease in the association constant of the highest energy sites in CH{sub 2}Cl{sub 2}, CHCl{sub 3}, and THF but not in MeCN. The overall affinity of Fmoc-L-trp in CH{sub 2}Cl{sub 2}, CHCl{sub 3}, and THF is dominated by adsorption on the lowest energy sites, the most abundant ones. In contrast, in MeCN, the overall affinity of Fmoc-L-Trp is dominated by adsorption on the highest energy sites, the least abundant sites. In CH{sub 2}Cl{sub 2}, CHCl{sub 3}, and THF, the number of each type of sites increases with decreasing hydrogen-bonding ability of the solvents while the association constant of the corresponding sites does not change significantly.

  13. Application of natural linear polysaccharide to green resist polymers for electron beam and extreme-ultraviolet lithography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takei, Satoshi; Oshima, Akihiro; Oyama, Tomoko G.; Ito, Kenta; Sugahara, Kigen; Kashiwakura, Miki; Kozawa, Takahiro; Tagawa, Seiichi; Hanabata, Makoto

    2014-11-01

    The application of natural linear polysaccharide to green resist polymers was demonstrated for electron beam (EB) and extreme-ultraviolet (EUV) lithography using organic-solvent-free water spin-coating and tetramethylammonium hydroxide (TMAH)-free water-developable techniques. The water spin-coating and water-developable processes in a green resist material were carried out on wafers because of the water solubility of natural polysaccharides for an environmentally friendly manufacturing process for next-generation electronic devices. The developed green resist material with a weight-average molecular weight of 83,000 and 70 mol % hydroxyl groups as a water-developable feature was found to have acceptable properties such as spin-coat ability on 200 mm wafers, prediction sensitivity to EUV at the wavelengths of 6.7 and 13.5 nm, a high contrast of the water dissolution rate before and after EB irradiation, pillar patterns of 100-400 nm with a high EB sensitivity of 10 µC/cm2, and etch selectivity with a silicon-based middle layer in CF4 plasma treatment.

  14. Selective trace enrichment of chlorotriazine pesticides from natural waters and sediment samples using terbuthylazine molecularly imprinted polymers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ferrer, I.; Lanza, F.; Tolokan, A.; Horvath, V.; Sellergren, B.; Horvai, G.; Barcelo, D.

    2000-01-01

    Two molecularly imprinted polymers were synthesized using either dichloromethane or toluene as the porogen and terbuthylazine as the template and were used as solid-phase extraction cartridges for the enrichment of six chlorotriazines (deisopropylatrazine, deethylatrazine, simazine, atrazine, propazine, and terbuthylazine) in natural water and sediment samples. The extracted samples were analyzed by liquid chromatography/diode array detection (LC/DAD). Several washing solvents, as well as different volumes, were tested for their ability to remove the matrix components nonspecifically adsorbed on the sorbents. This cleanup step was shown to be of prime importance to the successful extraction of the pesticides from the aqueous samples. The optimal analytical conditions were obtained when the MIP imprinted using dichloromethane was the sorbent, 2 mL of dichloromethane was used in the washing step, and the preconcentrated analytes were eluted with 8 mL of methanol. The recoveries were higher than 80% for all the chlorotriazines except for propazine (53%) when 50- or 100-mL groundwater samples, spiked at 1 ??g/L level, were analyzed. The limits of detection varied from 0.05 to 0.2 ??g/L when preconcentrating a 100-mL groundwater sample. Natural sediment samples from the Ebre Delta area (Tarragona, Spain) containing atrazine and deethylatrazine were Soxhlet extracted and analyzed by the methodology developed in this work. No significant interferences from the sample matrix were noticed, thus indicating good selectivity of the MIP sorbents used.

  15. A compact and highly efficient natural gas fuel processor for 1-kW residential polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Doohwan; Lee, Hyun Chul; Lee, Kang Hee; Kim, Soonho

    A compact and highly efficient natural gas fuel processor for 1-kW residential polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) has been developed at the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT). The fuel processor, referred to as SFP-2, consists of a natural gas reformer, a water-gas shift reactor, a heat-exchanger and a burner, in which the overall integrated volume including insulation is exceptionally small, namely, about 14 l. The SFP-2 produces hydrogen at 1000 l h -1 (STP) at full load with the carbon monoxide concentration in the process gas below 7000 ppmv (dry gas base). The maximum thermal efficiency is ∼78% (lower heating value) at full load and even ∼72% at 25% partial load. This fuel processor of small size with high thermal efficiency is one of the best such technologies for the above given H 2 throughputs. The time required for starting up the SFP-2 is within 20 min with the addition of external heating for the shift reactor. No additional medium, such as nitrogen, is required either for start-up or for shut down of the SFP-2, which is an advantage for application in residential PEMFC co-generations systems.

  16. Extraction of natural red colorants from the fermented broth of Penicillium purpurogenum using aqueous two-phase polymer systems.

    PubMed

    Santos-Ebinuma, Valéria Carvalho; Lopes, André Moreni; Pessoa, Adalberto; Teixeira, Maria Francisca Simas

    2015-01-01

    Safety concerns related to the increasing and widespread application of synthetic coloring agents have increased the demand for natural colorants. Fungi have been employed in the production of novel and safer colorants. In order to obtain the colorants from fermented broth, suitable extraction systems must be developed. Aqueous two-phase polymer systems (ATPPS) offer a favorable chemical environment and provide a promising alternative for extracting and solubilizing these molecules. The aim of this study was to investigate the partitioning of red colorants from the fermented broth of Penicillium purpurogenum using an ATPPS composed of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and sodium polyacrylate (NaPA). Red colorants partitioned preferentially to the top (PEG-rich phase). In systems composed of PEG 6,000 g/mol/NaPA 8,000 g/mol, optimum colorant partition coefficient (KC ) was obtained in the presence of NaCl 0.1 M (KC  = 10.30) while the PEG 10,000 g/mol/NaPA 8,000 g/mol system in the presence of Na2 SO4 0.5 M showed the highest KC (14.78). For both polymers, the mass balance (%MB) and yield in the PEG phase (%ηTOP ) were close to 100 and 79%, respectively. The protein selectivity in all conditions evaluated ranged from 2.0-3.0, which shows a suitable separation of the red colorants and proteins present in the fermented broth. The results suggest that the partitioning of the red colorants is dependent on both the PEG molecular size and salt type. Furthermore, the results obtained support the potential application of ATPPS as the first step of a purification process to recover colorants from fermented broth of microorganisms.

  17. Extraction of natural red colorants from the fermented broth of Penicillium purpurogenum using aqueous two-phase polymer systems.

    PubMed

    Santos-Ebinuma, Valéria Carvalho; Lopes, André Moreni; Pessoa, Adalberto; Teixeira, Maria Francisca Simas

    2015-01-01

    Safety concerns related to the increasing and widespread application of synthetic coloring agents have increased the demand for natural colorants. Fungi have been employed in the production of novel and safer colorants. In order to obtain the colorants from fermented broth, suitable extraction systems must be developed. Aqueous two-phase polymer systems (ATPPS) offer a favorable chemical environment and provide a promising alternative for extracting and solubilizing these molecules. The aim of this study was to investigate the partitioning of red colorants from the fermented broth of Penicillium purpurogenum using an ATPPS composed of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and sodium polyacrylate (NaPA). Red colorants partitioned preferentially to the top (PEG-rich phase). In systems composed of PEG 6,000 g/mol/NaPA 8,000 g/mol, optimum colorant partition coefficient (KC ) was obtained in the presence of NaCl 0.1 M (KC  = 10.30) while the PEG 10,000 g/mol/NaPA 8,000 g/mol system in the presence of Na2 SO4 0.5 M showed the highest KC (14.78). For both polymers, the mass balance (%MB) and yield in the PEG phase (%ηTOP ) were close to 100 and 79%, respectively. The protein selectivity in all conditions evaluated ranged from 2.0-3.0, which shows a suitable separation of the red colorants and proteins present in the fermented broth. The results suggest that the partitioning of the red colorants is dependent on both the PEG molecular size and salt type. Furthermore, the results obtained support the potential application of ATPPS as the first step of a purification process to recover colorants from fermented broth of microorganisms. PMID:26097197

  18. The use of natural abundance carbon-13 to identify and quantify sources of emitted carbon dioxide in a calcareous southern Ontario Luvisolic soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilton, Meaghan

    Three studies Were conducted at the Elora Research Station (ERS) on a Luvisolic soil to investigate the soil inorganic carbon (SIC) and soil organic carbon (SOC) components contributing to the CO2 flux (FC) using natural 13C abundance. SIC contributed to the FC in intact soil incubations. Soil disruption exacerbated the release of CO2 from both pedogenic and lithogenic carbonates. Field and laboratory techniques to obtain the delta13C of respired CO2 (delta13CR) were compared. Short-term deployment of non flow-through non steady-state chambers and the use of the simple two-ended mass balance approach to derive delta 13CR were found acceptable to apply to the ERS site. The delta13CR from a corn field at ERS with a history of multiple C4 and C3 crop rotations was partitioned into SIC and SOC components using two approaches. Root respiration contributed 2% - 64% and carbonates contribute up to 20% to the FC.

  19. Nitrogen input 15N-signatures are reflected in plant 15N natural abundances of N-rich tropical forest in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdisa Gurmesa, Geshere; Lu, Xiankai; Gundersen, Per; Yunting, Fang; Mo, Jiangming

    2016-04-01

    In this study, we tested the measurement of natural abundance of 15N (δ15N) for its ability to assess changes in N cycling due to increased N deposition in two forest types; namely, an old-growth broadleaved forest and a pine forest, in southern China. We measured δ15N values of inorganic N in input and output fluxes under ambient N deposition, and N concentration and δ15N of major ecosystem compartments under ambient and increased N deposition. Our results showed that N deposition to the forests was 15N-depleted, and was dominated by NH4-N. Plants were 15N-depleted due to imprint from the 15N-depleted atmospheric N deposition. The old-growth forest had larger N concentration and was more 15N-enriched than the pine forest. Nitrogen addition did not significantly affect N concentration, but it significantly increased δ15N values of plants, and slightly more so in the pine forest, toward the 15N signature of the added N in both forests. The result indicates that the pine forest may rely more on the 15N-depleted deposition N. Soil δ15N values were slightly decreased by the N addition. Our result suggests that ecosystem δ15N is more sensitive to the changes in ecosystem N status and N cycling than N concentration in N-saturated sub-tropical forests.

  20. Natural (15)N Abundance in Key Amino Acids from Lamb Muscle: Exploring a New Horizon in Diet Authentication and Assessment of Feed Efficiency in Ruminants.

    PubMed

    Cantalapiedra-Hijar, Gonzalo; Ortigues-Marty, Isabelle; Schiphorst, Anne-Marie; Robins, Richard J; Tea, Illa; Prache, Sophie

    2016-05-25

    Natural (15)N abundance (δ(15)N) varies between individual amino acids (AAs). We hypothesized that δ(15)N of nontransaminating and essential AAs ("source" AAs, such as phenylalanine) present in animal tissues could be used as a marker of dietary origin, whereas δ(15)N of transaminating AAs ("trophic" AAs, such as glutamic acid) could give more detailed insights into animal feed efficiency. Two diets based on dehydrated Lucerne pellets were tested in growing lambs, which promoted different feed efficiencies. No dietary effects were noted on δ(15)N of any AAs analyzed in lamb muscle. In addition, δ(15)N of phenylalanine was unexpectedly similar to that of glutamic acid, suggesting that δ(15)N of AAs is significantly derived from the metabolism of the rumen microbiota and, thus, are not suited for diet authentication in ruminants. In contrast, the δ(15)N of transaminating AAs facilitates an improved prediction of animal feed efficiency compared to the classical isotopic bulk N analysis. PMID:27148901

  1. Fast magic-angle sample spinning solid-state NMR at 60-100kHz for natural abundance samples.

    PubMed

    Nishiyama, Yusuke

    2016-09-01

    In spite of tremendous progress made in pulse sequence designs and sophisticated hardware developments, methods to improve sensitivity and resolution in solid-state NMR (ssNMR) are still emerging. The rate at which sample is spun at magic angle determines the extent to which sensitivity and resolution of NMR spectra are improved. To this end, the prime objective of this article is to give a comprehensive theoretical and experimental framework of fast magic angle spinning (MAS) technique. The engineering design of fast MAS rotors based on spinning rate, sample volume, and sensitivity is presented in detail. Besides, the benefits of fast MAS citing the recent progress in methodology, especially for natural abundance samples are also highlighted. The effect of the MAS rate on (1)H resolution, which is a key to the success of the (1)H inverse detection methods, is described by a simple mathematical factor named as the homogeneity factor k. A comparison between various (1)H inverse detection methods is also presented. Moreover, methods to reduce the number of spinning sidebands (SSBs) for the systems with huge anisotropies in combination with (1)H inverse detection at fast MAS are discussed.

  2. Sensitive measurement of NH4+ 15N/14N (delta 15NH4+) at natural abundance levels in fresh and saltwaters.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lin; Altabet, Mark A; Wu, Taixing; Hadas, Ora

    2007-07-15

    We report a new method for determining the 15N/14N of NH4+ at natural abundance level in both freshwater and seawater. NH4+ is first quantitatively oxidized to NO2- by hypobromite (BrO-) at pH approximately 12. After the addition of sodium arsenite to consume excess BrO-, yield is verified by colorimetric NO2- determination. NO2- is further reduced to N2O using a 1:1 sodium azide and acetic acid buffer solution using previously established procedures. The product N2O is then analyzed for isotopic composition using a continuous flow purge and cryogenic trap system coupled to an isotope ratio mass spectrometer. Reliable delta 15N values (standard deviation is 0.3 per thousand or better) are obtained over an NH4+ concentration range of 0.5-10 microM using 20 mL volumes of either freshwater or seawater samples. Higher concentration samples are readily diluted to lower concentration. Preexisting NO2- is removed by treatment with sulfanilic acid. There is no interference from any of the nitrogen-containing compounds tested except short-chain aliphatic amino acids (i.e., glycine) which typically are present at very low environmental concentrations. As compared to published methods, our approach is more robust, readily applicable at low concentrations and small sample volumes, and requires less time for preparation and analysis.

  3. Nitrogen content, 15N natural abundance and biomass of the two pleurocarpous mosses Pleurozium schreberi (Brid.) Mitt. and Scleropodium purum (Hedw.) Limpr. in relation to atmospheric nitrogen deposition.

    PubMed

    Solga, A; Burkhardt, J; Zechmeister, H G; Frahm, J-P

    2005-04-01

    The suitability of the two pleurocarpous mosses Pleurozium schreberi and Scleropodium purum for assessing spatial variation in nitrogen deposition was investigated. Sampling was carried out at eight sites in the western part of Germany with bulk deposition rates ranging between 6.5 and 18.5 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1). In addition to the effect of deposition on the nitrogen content of the two species, its influence on 15N natural abundance (delta15N values) and on productivity was examined. Annual increases of the mosses were used for all analyses. Significant relationships between bulk N deposition and nitrogen content were obtained for both species; delta15N-values reflected the ratio of NH4-N to NO3-N in deposition. A negative effect of nitrogen input on productivity, i.e. decreasing biomass per area with increasing N deposition due to a reduction of stem density, was particularly evident with P. schreberi. Monitoring of N deposition by means of mosses is considered an important supplement to existing monitoring programs. It makes possible an improved spatial resolution, and thus those areas that receive high loads of nitrogen are more easily discernible. PMID:15620592

  4. Improving the dimensional stability of natural fibers with the fiber polymer penetrant and electron beam method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woods, Sean R.

    Cellulose-based material absorbs or releases moisture in relation to atmospheric conditions. This research looks to minimize dimensional change with the use of low molecular weight (LMW) monomers polymerized by electron beam (EB) ionizing radiation. Sisal, jute, coir, and hemp natural fibers with average natural swelling of 26.55%, 29.46%, 9.06%, and 32.69%, respectively, and glass fiber as control were used for analysis. Three LMW bulk monomers, hydroxyethyl acrylate (HEA), hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA), and polyethylene glycol diacrylate (EGDA), as well as an encapsulating agent, isodecyl acrylate, and cross-linker, ethoxylated trimethylolpropane triacrylate, were evaluated for resin formulation. In total, 1015 specimens were measured for swelling. Moisture uptake characteristics of the specimens were analyzed. A new method of measuring specimen dimensional changes by a light microscope and image analysis software was used. Results indicate dimensional stability improvement of 39.34% - 91.46% for hemp with HEA and cross-linker, and sisal with HEMA and cross-linker respectively.

  5. Natural & synthetically-modified cyclodextrins and polymers in drug delivery systems.

    PubMed

    Otero-Espinar, Francisco J; Blanco-Méndez, José

    2014-01-01

    Cyclodextrins are natural cyclic oligosaccharides that play a relevant role in different fields as pharmacy, medicine, chemistry, material, food or agricultural science. From the point of view of pharmaceutical and medical applications cyclodextrins have interest for their ability to form inclusion complexes with different host molecules as drugs. In the pharmaceutical industry, cyclodextrins has been used classically as solubilizes of hydrophobic drugs or as stabilizers of some labile molecules but can also offer interesting possibilities for drug control release of both hydrophobic and hydrophilic drugs. New and interesting perspectives for their use is being developed in recent years by the development of novel cyclodextrin derivatives including the polymeric one. The proposed topic for this special number of CTMC aims to provide new successes, challenges and recent advances on the design and applications of new CDs derivatives into the biomedical and pharmaceutical field .

  6. Fabrication, Characterization, and Evaluation of Bionanocomposites Based on Natural Polymers and Antibiotics for Wound Healing Applications.

    PubMed

    Rădulescu, Marius; Holban, Alina Maria; Mogoantă, Laurențiu; Bălşeanu, Tudor-Adrian; Mogoșanu, George Dan; Savu, Diana; Popescu, Roxana Cristina; Fufă, Oana; Grumezescu, Alexandru Mihai; Bezirtzoglou, Eugenia; Lazar, Veronica; Chifiriuc, Mariana Carmen

    2016-01-01

    The aim of our research activity was to obtain a biocompatible nanostructured composite based on naturally derived biopolymers (chitin and sodium alginate) loaded with commercial antibiotics (either Cefuroxime or Cefepime) with dual functions, namely promoting wound healing and assuring the local delivery of the loaded antibiotic. Compositional, structural, and morphological evaluations were performed by using the thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analytical techniques. In order to quantitatively and qualitatively evaluate the biocompatibility of the obtained composites, we performed the tetrazolium-salt (MTT) and agar diffusion in vitro assays on the L929 cell line. The evaluation of antimicrobial potential was evaluated by the viable cell count assay on strains belonging to two clinically relevant bacterial species (i.e., Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus).

  7. Fabrication, Characterization, and Evaluation of Bionanocomposites Based on Natural Polymers and Antibiotics for Wound Healing Applications.

    PubMed

    Rădulescu, Marius; Holban, Alina Maria; Mogoantă, Laurențiu; Bălşeanu, Tudor-Adrian; Mogoșanu, George Dan; Savu, Diana; Popescu, Roxana Cristina; Fufă, Oana; Grumezescu, Alexandru Mihai; Bezirtzoglou, Eugenia; Lazar, Veronica; Chifiriuc, Mariana Carmen

    2016-01-01

    The aim of our research activity was to obtain a biocompatible nanostructured composite based on naturally derived biopolymers (chitin and sodium alginate) loaded with commercial antibiotics (either Cefuroxime or Cefepime) with dual functions, namely promoting wound healing and assuring the local delivery of the loaded antibiotic. Compositional, structural, and morphological evaluations were performed by using the thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analytical techniques. In order to quantitatively and qualitatively evaluate the biocompatibility of the obtained composites, we performed the tetrazolium-salt (MTT) and agar diffusion in vitro assays on the L929 cell line. The evaluation of antimicrobial potential was evaluated by the viable cell count assay on strains belonging to two clinically relevant bacterial species (i.e., Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus). PMID:27294905

  8. Formulation and Evaluation of a Sustained-Release Tablets of Metformin Hydrochloride Using Hydrophilic Synthetic and Hydrophobic Natural Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Wadher, K. J.; Kakde, R. B.; Umekar, M. J.

    2011-01-01

    Metformin hydrochloride has relatively short plasma half-life, low absolute bioavailability. The need for the administration two to three times a day when larger doses are required can decrease patient compliance. Sustained release formulation that would maintain plasma level for 8-12 h might be sufficient for daily dosing of metformin. Sustained release products are needed for metformin to prolong its duration of action and to improve patient compliances. The overall objective of this study was to develop an oral sustained release metformin hydrochloride tablet by using hydrophilic Eudragit RSPO alone or its combination with hydrophobic natural polymers Gum copal and gum damar as rate controlling factor. The tablets were prepared by wet granulation method. The in vitro dissolution study was carried out using USP 22 apparatus I, paddle method and the data was analysed using zero order, first order, Higuchi, Korsmeyer and Hixson-Crowell equations. The drug release study revealed that Eudragit RSPO alone was unable to sustain the drug release. Combining Eudragit with gum Copal and gum Damar sustained the drug release for more than 12 h. Kinetic modeling of in vitro dissolution profiles revealed the drug release mechanism ranges from diffusion controlled or Fickian transport to anomalous type or non-Fickian transport. Fitting the in vitro drug release data to Korsmeyer equation indicated that diffusion along with erosion could be the mechanism of drug release. PMID:22303065

  9. Controlled Assembly of Sb2S3 Nanoparticles on Silica/Polymer Nanotubes: Insights into the Nature of Hybrid Interfaces

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Huaming; Li, Mei; Fu, Liangjie; Tang, Aidong; Mann, Stephen

    2013-01-01

    Silica nanotubes can serve as high aspect ratio templates for the deposition of inorganic nanoparticles to form novel hybrids. However, the nature of the interfacial binding is still an unresolved challenge when considered at the atomic level. In this work, novel nanocomposites have been successfully fabricated by the controlled nucleation and assembly of Sb2S3 nanoparticles on the surface of mercaptopropyl-functionalized silica/polymer hybrid nanotubes (HNTs). The Sb2S3 nanoparticles were strongly attached to the HNTs surface by interactions between the pendent thiol groups and inorganic sulfur atoms. Detailed analysis of the geometric and electronic structure using first–principle density functional theory demonstrates charge transfer from the nanoparticles to the underlying HNTs at the Sb2S3/HNTs interfaces. Formation of a packed array of Sb2S3 nanoparticles on the HNTs results in mixing of the electronic states of the components, and is mediated by the mercaptopropyl bridges between Sb2S3 and the outer layer of the HNTs. PMID:23434879

  10. Radiation synthesis and characterisation of the network structure of natural/synthetic double-network superabsorbent polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Şen, Murat; Hayrabolulu, Hande

    2012-09-01

    In this study radiation synthesis and characterisation of the network structure of acrylic acid sodium salt/locust bean gum, (AAcNa/LBG) natural/synthetic double-network super absorbent polymers were investigated. Quartet systems composed of acrylic acid sodium salt/locust bean gum/N,N methylene bis acrylamide/water (AAcNa/LBG/MBAAm/water) were prepared at varying degree of neutralisations (DN) by controlling the DN value of AAc and irradiated with gamma rays at ambient temperature at a very low dose rate. The influences of the DN on the swelling and network properties were examined. It was observed that the DN strongly affected the gelation and super absorption properties of the gels. Molecular weight between crosslinks (M), effective crosslink density (νe) and mesh size (ξ) of SAPs were calculated from swelling and shear modules data obtained from compression and oscillatory frequency sweep tests. M values obtained from the uniaxial deformation experiments were very close to those obtained from the oscillatory shear experiments excluding the completely neutralised gel system. It was concluded that the uniaxial compression technique could be used for the characterisation of the network structure of a hydrogel as along with the rheological analyses; however, a very precise control of the gel size was also needed.

  11. Solid Polymer Electrolytes Based on Functionalized Tannic Acids from Natural Resources for All-Solid-State Lithium-Ion Batteries.

    PubMed

    Shim, Jimin; Bae, Ki Yoon; Kim, Hee Joong; Lee, Jin Hong; Kim, Dong-Gyun; Yoon, Woo Young; Lee, Jong-Chan

    2015-12-21

    Solid polymer electrolytes (SPEs) for all-solid-state lithium-ion batteries are prepared by simple one-pot polymerization induced by ultraviolet (UV) light using poly(ethylene glycol) methyl ether methacrylate (PEGMA) as an ion-conducting monomeric unit and tannic acid (TA)-based crosslinking agent and plasticizer. The crosslinking agent and plasticizer based on natural resources are obtained from the reaction of TA with glycidyl methacrylate and glycidyl poly(ethylene glycol), respectively. Dimensionally stable free-standing SPE having a large ionic conductivity of 5.6×10(-4)  Scm(-1) at room temperature can be obtained by the polymerization of PEGMA into P(PEGMA) with a very small amount (0.1 wt %) of the crosslinking agent and 2.0 wt % of the plasticizer. The ionic conductivity value of SPE with a crosslinked structure is one order of magnitude larger than that of linear P(PEGMA) in the waxy state.

  12. Formulation and evaluation of a sustained-release tablets of metformin hydrochloride using hydrophilic synthetic and hydrophobic natural polymers.

    PubMed

    Wadher, K J; Kakde, R B; Umekar, M J

    2011-03-01

    Metformin hydrochloride has relatively short plasma half-life, low absolute bioavailability. The need for the administration two to three times a day when larger doses are required can decrease patient compliance. Sustained release formulation that would maintain plasma level for 8-12 h might be sufficient for daily dosing of metformin. Sustained release products are needed for metformin to prolong its duration of action and to improve patient compliances. The overall objective of this study was to develop an oral sustained release metformin hydrochloride tablet by using hydrophilic Eudragit RSPO alone or its combination with hydrophobic natural polymers Gum copal and gum damar as rate controlling factor. The tablets were prepared by wet granulation method. The in vitro dissolution study was carried out using USP 22 apparatus I, paddle method and the data was analysed using zero order, first order, Higuchi, Korsmeyer and Hixson-Crowell equations. The drug release study revealed that Eudragit RSPO alone was unable to sustain the drug release. Combining Eudragit with gum Copal and gum Damar sustained the drug release for more than 12 h. Kinetic modeling of in vitro dissolution profiles revealed the drug release mechanism ranges from diffusion controlled or Fickian transport to anomalous type or non-Fickian transport. Fitting the in vitro drug release data to Korsmeyer equation indicated that diffusion along with erosion could be the mechanism of drug release. PMID:22303065

  13. The effect of drought and interspecific interactions on depth of water uptake in deep- and shallow-rooting grassland species as determined by δ18O natural abundance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoekstra, N. J.; Finn, J. A.; Hofer, D.; Lüscher, A.

    2014-08-01

    Increased incidence of drought, as predicted under climate change, has the potential to negatively affect grassland production. Compared to monocultures, vertical belowground niche complementarity between shallow- and deep-rooting species may be an important mechanism resulting in higher yields and higher resistance to drought in grassland mixtures. However, very little is known about the belowground responses in grassland systems and increased insight into these processes may yield important information both to predict the effect of future climate change and better design agricultural systems to cope with this. This study assessed the effect of a 9-week experimental summer drought on the depth of water uptake of two shallow-rooting species (Lolium perenne L. and Trifolium repens L.) and two deep-rooting species (Cichorium intybus L. and Trifolium pratense L.) in grassland monocultures and four-species mixtures by using the natural abundance δ18O isotope method. We tested the following three hypotheses: (1) drought results in a shift of water uptake to deeper soil layers, (2) deep-rooting species take up a higher proportion of water from deeper soil layers relative to shallow-rooting species, and (3) as a result of interspecific interactions in mixtures, the water uptake of shallow-rooting species becomes shallower when grown together with deep-rooting species and vice versa, resulting in reduced niche overlap. The natural abundance δ18O technique provided novel insights into the depth of water uptake of deep- and shallow- rooting grassland species and revealed large shifts in depth of water uptake in response to drought and interspecific interactions. Compared to control conditions, drought reduced the proportional water uptake from 0-10 cm soil depth (PCWU0-10) of L. perenne, T. repens and C. intybus in monocultures by on average 54%. In contrast, the PCWU0-10 of T. pratense in monoculture increased by 44%, and only when grown in mixture did the PCWU0-10 of T

  14. Carbon-13 natural abundance signatures of long-chain fatty acids to determinate sediment origin: A case study in northeast Austria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mabit, Lionel; Gibbs, Max; Meusburger, Katrin; Toloza, Arsenio; Resch, Christian; Klik, Andreas; Swales, Andrew; Alewell, Christine

    2016-04-01

    - Several recently published information from scientific research have highlighted that compound-specific stable isotope (CSSI) signatures of fatty acids (FAs) based on the measurement of carbon-13 natural abundance signatures showed great promises to identify sediment origin. The authors have used this innovative isotopic approach to investigate the sources of sediment in a three hectares Austrian sub-watershed (i.e. Mistelbach). Through a previous study using the Cs-137 technique, Mabit et al. (Geoderma, 2009) reported a local maximum sedimentation rate reaching 20 to 50 t/ha/yr in the lowest part of this watershed. However, this study did not identify the sources. Subsequently, the deposited sediment at its outlet (i.e. the sediment mixture) and representative soil samples from the four main agricultural fields - expected to be the source soils - of the site were investigated. The bulk delta carbon-13 of the samples and two long-chain FAs (i.e. C22:0 and C24:0) allowed the best statistical discrimination. Using two different mixing models (i.e. IsoSource and CSSIAR v1.00) and the organic carbon content of the soil sources and sediment mixture, the contribution of each source has been established. Results suggested that the grassed waterway contributed to at least 50% of the sediment deposited at the watershed outlet. This study, that will require further validation, highlights that CSSI and Cs-137 techniques are complementary as fingerprints and tracers for establishing land sediment redistribution and could provide meaningful information for optimized decision-making by land managers.

  15. Natural abundances of 15N and 13C in leaves of some N2-fixing and non-N2-fixing trees and shrubs in Syria.

    PubMed

    Kurdali, F; Al-Shamma'a, M

    2009-09-01

    A survey study was conducted on man-made plantations located at two different areas in the arid region of Syria to determine the variations in natural abundances of the (15)N and (13)C isotopes in leaves of several woody legume and non-legume species, and to better understand the consequence of such variations on nitrogen fixation and carbon assimilation. In the first study area (non-saline soil), the delta(15)N values in four legume species (Acacia cyanophylla,-1.73 per thousand Acacia farnesiana,-0.55 per thousand Prosopis juliflora,-1.64 per thousand; and Medicago arborea,+1.6 \\textperthousand) and one actinorhizal plant (Elaeagnus angustifolia,-0.46 to-2.1 per thousand) were found to be close to that of the atmospheric value pointing to a major contribution of N(2) fixing in these species; whereas, delta(15)N values of the non-fixing plant species were highly positive. delta(13)C per thousand; in leaves of the C3 plants were found to be affected by plant species, ranging from a minimum of-28.67 per thousand; to a maximum of-23 per thousand. However, they were relatively similar within each plant species although they were grown at different sites. In the second study area (salt affected soil), a higher carbon discrimination value (Delta(13)C per thousand) was exhibited by P. juliflora, indicating that the latter is a salt tolerant species; however, its delta(15)N was highly positive (+7.03 per thousand) suggesting a negligible contribution of the fixed N(2). Hence, it was concluded that the enhancement of N(2) fixation might be achieved by selection of salt-tolerant Rhizobium strains.

  16. [Distribution characteristics of soil humus fractions stable carbon isotope natural abundance (delta 13C) in paddy field under long-term ridge culture].

    PubMed

    Tang, Xiao-hong; Luo, You-jin; Ren, Zhen-jiang; Lü, Jia-ke; Wei, Chao-fu

    2011-04-01

    A 16-year field experiment was conducted in a ridge culture paddy field in the hilly region of Sichuan Basin, aimed to investigate the distribution characteristics of stable carbon isotope natural abundance (delta 13C) in soil humus fractions. The soil organic carbon (SOC) content in the paddy field under different cultivation modes ranked in the order of wide ridge culture > ridge culture > paddy and upland rotation. In soil humus substances (HS), humin (HU) was the main composition, occupying 21% - 30% of the total SOC. In the extracted soil carbon, humic acid (HA) dominated, occupying 17% - 21% of SOC and 38% - 65% of HS. The delta 13C value of SOC ranged from -27.9 per thousand to -25.6 per thousand, and the difference of the delta 13C value between 0-5 cm and 20-40 cm soil layers was about 1.9 per thousand. The delta 13C value of HA under different cultivation modes was 1 per thousand - 2 per thousand lower than that of SOC, and more approached to the delta 13C value of rapeseed and rice residues. As for fulvic acid (FA), its delta 13C value was about 2 per thousand and 4 per thousand higher than that of SOC and HA, respectively. The delta 13C value of HU in plough layer (0-20 cm) and plow layer (20-40 cm) ranged from -23.7 per thousand - -24.9 per thousand and -22.6 per thousand - -24.2 per thousand, respectively, reflecting the admixture of young and old HS. The delta 13C value in various organic carbon fractions was HU>FA>SOC>rapeseed and rice residues>HA. Long-term rice planting benefited the increase of SOC content, and cultivation mode played an important role in affecting the distribution patterns of soil humus delta 13C in plough layer and plow layer. PMID:21774322

  17. A critical size and period hypothesis to explain natural regulation of salmon abundance and the linkage to climate and climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beamish, R. J.; Mahnken, Conrad

    We hypothesise that salmon year class strength is determined in two stages during the first year in the ocean. There is an early natural mortality that is mostly related to predation, which is followed by a physiologically-based mortality. Juvenile salmon that fail to reach a critical size by the end of their first marine summer do not survive the following winter. In this study we describe our initial tests of this critical size and critical period hypothesis using data from ocean surveys of juvenile salmon and from experimental feeding studies on coho. Conservative swept volume abundance estimates for juvenile coho, and possibly chinook, indicate that there is high mortality in fall and winter during their first year in the sea. Studies of otolith weight show that the length and otolith-weight relationship for young coho changes in the early fall of their first ocean year. Studies of growth and associated hormone levels in feeding studies show that slow growing juvenile coho are stunted and deficient in an insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I). Juvenile coho sampled in September had low IGF-I values, indicative of poor growth. The results of these studies provide evidence for the general hypothesis that growth-related mortality occurs late in the first marine year and may be important in determining the strength of the year class (brood year). The link between total mortality and climate could be operating via the availability of nutrients regulating the food supply and hence competition for food (i.e. bottom-up regulation).

  18. [Distribution characteristics of soil humus fractions stable carbon isotope natural abundance (delta 13C) in paddy field under long-term ridge culture].

    PubMed

    Tang, Xiao-hong; Luo, You-jin; Ren, Zhen-jiang; Lü, Jia-ke; Wei, Chao-fu

    2011-04-01

    A 16-year field experiment was conducted in a ridge culture paddy field in the hilly region of Sichuan Basin, aimed to investigate the distribution characteristics of stable carbon isotope natural abundance (delta 13C) in soil humus fractions. The soil organic carbon (SOC) content in the paddy field under different cultivation modes ranked in the order of wide ridge culture > ridge culture > paddy and upland rotation. In soil humus substances (HS), humin (HU) was the main composition, occupying 21% - 30% of the total SOC. In the extracted soil carbon, humic acid (HA) dominated, occupying 17% - 21% of SOC and 38% - 65% of HS. The delta 13C value of SOC ranged from -27.9 per thousand to -25.6 per thousand, and the difference of the delta 13C value between 0-5 cm and 20-40 cm soil layers was about 1.9 per thousand. The delta 13C value of HA under different cultivation modes was 1 per thousand - 2 per thousand lower than that of SOC, and more approached to the delta 13C value of rapeseed and rice residues. As for fulvic acid (FA), its delta 13C value was about 2 per thousand and 4 per thousand higher than that of SOC and HA, respectively. The delta 13C value of HU in plough layer (0-20 cm) and plow layer (20-40 cm) ranged from -23.7 per thousand - -24.9 per thousand and -22.6 per thousand - -24.2 per thousand, respectively, reflecting the admixture of young and old HS. The delta 13C value in various organic carbon fractions was HU>FA>SOC>rapeseed and rice residues>HA. Long-term rice planting benefited the increase of SOC content, and cultivation mode played an important role in affecting the distribution patterns of soil humus delta 13C in plough layer and plow layer.

  19. cis-Prenyltransferase and Polymer Analysis from a Natural Rubber Perspective.

    PubMed

    Kwon, M; Kwon, E-J G; Ro, D K

    2016-01-01

    Dolichol and natural rubber are representative cis-polyisoprenoids in primary and secondary metabolism, respectively. Their biosynthesis is catalyzed by cis-prenyltransferase (CPT) by sequential condensations of isopentenyl diphosphates (IPPs) to a priming molecule. Although prokaryotic CPTs have been well characterized, the mechanism of eukaryotic CPTs in cis-polyisoprene biosynthesis was only recently revealed. It was shown that eukaryotes have evolved a unique protein complex, comprised of CPT and CPT-binding protein (CBP), to synthesize cis-polyisoprenoids. In the context of this new discovery, we found discrepancies in literature for CPT or CBP biochemical assays and in vivo CPT complementation using rer2 (yeast CPT) yeast mutant. Our study here shows that rer2 revertants occur at a frequency that cannot be disregarded and are likely accountable for the results that cannot be explained by the CPT/CBP heteroprotein complex model. To make a stable mutant, SRT1 gene (secondary CPT expressed at a basal level in yeast) was additionally deleted in the rer2Δ mutant background. This stable rer2Δ srt1Δ strain was then used to individually or simultaneously express Arabidopsis CPT1 (AtCPT1, At2g17570) and CBP (AtLEW1, At1G11755). We found that the simultaneous expression of Arabidopsis CPT1 and AtLEW1 effectively complements the rer2Δ srt1Δ strain, whereas the individual expression of AtCPT1 alone or AtLEW1 alone failed to rescue the yeast mutant. Microsomes from the dual expresser showed an efficient incorporation of IPPs into cis-polyisoprenoid (30% in 2h). These results showed that the CPT/CBP heteroprotein complex model is valid in Arabidopsis thaliana. Experimental details of these results are described in this methodology paper. PMID:27480685

  20. Layer-by-layer films assembled from natural polymers for sustained release of neurotrophin.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhiling; Li, Qianqi; Han, Lin; Zhong, Yinghui

    2015-09-01

    Cortical neural prostheses (CNPs) hold great promise for paralyzed patients by recording neural signals from the brain and translating them into movement commands. However, these electrodes normally fail to record neural signals weeks to months after implantation due to inflammation and neuronal loss around the implanted neural electrodes. Sustained local delivery of neurotrophins from biocompatible coatings on CNPs can potentially promote neuron survival and attract the nearby neurons to migrate toward the electrodes to increase neuron density at the electrode/brain interface, which is important for maintaining the recording quality and long-term performance of the implanted CNPs. However, sustained release of neurotrophins from biocompatible ultrathin coatings is very difficult to achieve. In this study, we investigated the potential of several biocompatible natural polyanions including heparin, dextran sulfate, and gelatin to form layer-by-layer (LbL) assembly with positively charged neurotrophin nerve growth factor (NGF) and its model protein lysozyme, and whether sustained release of NGF and lysozyme can be achieved from the nanoscale thin LbL coatings. We found that gelatin, which is less negatively charged than heparin and dextran sulfate, showed the highest efficacy in loading proteins into the LbL films because other interactions in addition to electrostatic interactions were involved in LbL assembly. Sustained release of NGF and lysozymes for approximately 2 weeks was achieved from the gelatin-based LbL coatings. Released NGF maintained the bioactivity to stimulate neurite outgrowth from PC12 cells. Gelatin is generally recognized as safe by the FDA. Thus, the biocompatible LbL coating developed in this study is highly promising to be used for implanted CNPs to improve their long-term performance in human patients. PMID:26358683

  1. Abundance of Ixodes ricinus and prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. in the nature reserve Siebengebirge, Germany, in comparison to three former studies from 1978 onwards

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background During the last decades, population densities of Ixodes ricinus and prevalences of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. have increased in different regions in Europe. In the present study, we determined tick abundance and the prevalence of different Borrelia genospecies in ticks from three sites in the Siebengebirge, Germany, which were already examined in the years 1987, 1989, 2001 and 2003. Data from all investigations were compared. Methods In 2007 and 2008, host-seeking I. ricinus were collected by monthly blanket dragging at three distinct vegetation sites in the Siebengebirge, a nature reserve and a well visited local recreation area near Bonn, Germany. In both years, 702 ticks were tested for B. burgdorferi s.l. DNA by nested PCR, and 249 tick samples positive for Borrelia were further genotyped by reverse line blotting. Results A total of 1046 and 1591 I. ricinus were collected in 2007 and 2008, respectively. In comparison to previous studies at these sites, the densities at all sites increased from 1987/89 and/or from 2003 until 2008. Tick densities and Borrelia prevalences in 2007 and 2008, respectively, were not correlated for all sites and both years. Overall, Borrelia prevalence of all ticks decreased significantly from 2007 (19.5%) to 2008 (16.5%), thus reaching the same level as in 2001 two times higher than in 1987/89 (7.6%). Since 2001, single infections with a Borrelia genospecies predominated in all collections, but the number of multiple infections increased, and in 2007, for the first time, triple Borrelia infections occurred. Prevalences of Borrelia genospecies differed considerably between the three sites, but B. garinii or B. afzelii were always the most dominant genospecies. B. lusitaniae was detected for the first time in the Siebengebirge, also in co-infections with B. garinii or B. valaisiana. Conclusions Over the last two centuries tick densities have changed in the Siebengebirge at sites that remained unchanged by human activity since

  2. Multiwalled carbon nanotube based molecular imprinted polymer for trace determination of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyaceticacid in natural water samples using a potentiometric method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anirudhan, Thayyath S.; Alexander, Sheeba

    2014-06-01

    A novel potentiometric sensor based on ion imprinted polymer inclusion membrane (IPIM) was prepared from the modification of multiwalled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) based molecularly imprinted polymer for the trace determination of the pesticide 2,4-D (2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid) in natural water samples. MWCNTs are initially functionalized with vinyl groups through nitric acid oxidation along with reacting by allylamine. MWCNT based imprinted polymer (MWCNT-MIP) was synthesized by means of methacrylic acid (MAA) as the monomer, trimethylol propane trimethacrylate (TRIM) as the cross linker, α,α‧-azobisisobutyronitrile (AIBN) as the initiator and 2,4-D an organochlorine pesticide molecule as the template. Organized material was characterized by means of FTIR, XRD and SEM analyses. The sensing membrane was developed by the inclusion of 2,4-D imprinted polymer materials in the polyvinyl chloride (PVC) matrix. The optimization of operational parameters normally used such as amount and nature of plasticizers sensing material, pH and response time was conducted. From the non-imprinted (NIPIM) and imprinted polymer inclusion membrane (IPIM) sensors the response behavior of 2,4-D was compared under optimum conditions. The IPIM sensor responds in the range of 1 × 10-9-1 × 10-5 M and the detection limit was found to be 1.2 × 10-9 M. The stability of MWCNT-IPIM sensor was checked by various methods and it is found to be 3 months and it can be reused many times without losing its sensitivity. For the application of sensor experiments with ground and tap water samples were performed.

  3. Reevaluation of siderophile element abundances and ratios across the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary: Implications for the nature of the projectile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goderis, S.; Tagle, R.; Belza, J.; Smit, J.; Montanari, A.; Vanhaecke, F.; Erzinger, J.; Claeys, Ph.

    2013-11-01

    The discovery over 30 years ago at Gubbio (Italy) and Caravaca (Spain) of an enrichment in the concentrations of iridium (Ir) and the other platinum group elements (PGE) by up to four orders of magnitude (Irmax = 0.10-87 ng/g) compared to average continental crustal background levels remains one of the most important discoveries in the Earth sciences. Since then, similar anomalies have been detected in more than 120 Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary sites worldwide. Highly elevated Ir and other siderophile element abundances in roughly chondritic ratios are considered strong indicators for the presence of a meteoritic contribution in impact-related lithologies (melt rocks, impact ejecta material, etc.), delivered when an extraterrestrial object strikes Earth. The presented work adds 113 unpublished PGE analyses of 38 K-Pg sections worldwide to the existing literature. The analytical protocol relied on for this purpose consisted of a combination of a nickel-sulfide fire assay pre-concentration technique and subsequent trace metal determination via inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Through repeated determination of key siderophile elements (i.e., Cr, Co, Ni, and PGE), the importance of sampling, nugget effects, and analytical methodologies applied becomes more apparent. Even more critically, these analytical effects are superimposed by the local syn- and post-depositional conditions that have affected the pristine meteoritic signature of the K-Pg impactor, including potential fractionation during vaporization and condensation, dissimilar PGE carrier phases, terrestrial PGE input, sedimentation rate, reworking, diagenesis, bioturbation, and chemical diffusion. While chondrite-normalized PGE patterns of individual sites appear relatively flat (i.e., chondritic), strong variations in siderophile element content and inter-element ratios exist between K-Pg locations, inter-laboratory measurements, and replicate analyses, hampering a precise

  4. Conformational study of C8 diazocine turn mimics using {sup 3}J{sub CH} coupling constants with {sup 13}C in natural abundance

    SciTech Connect

    Bean, J.W.; Briand, J.; Burgess, J.L.; Callahan, J.F.

    1994-12-01

    The conformations of two diazocine turn mimics, which were later incorporated into GPIIb/IIIa peptide antagonists, were investigated using nuclear magnetic resonance techniques. The two compounds, methyl (2,5-dioxo-3-(S)-(3-{omega}-tosylguanidino-propyl)-4-methyl-octahydro-1,4-dazocin-1-yl)acetate (1) and methyl (2,5-dioxo-3-(S)-(3-{omega}-tosyl-guanidino-propyl)-octahydro-1,5-diazocin-1-yl)acetate (2), differ only in their substituent at the diazocine position 4 nitrogen, yet this substitution results in a marked difference in the affinity of the resulting analogs for the GPIIb/IIIa receptor. It was of interest to determine if the difference observed in the antagonistic potency between these analogs was related to constitutional or, perhaps, conformational differences. The backbone conformations of these two molecules can be determined by measuring vicinal coupling constants along the trimethylene portion of the C8 ring backbone and by measuring interproton NOE intensities between the diazocine methine proton and the protons of the trimethylene group. For compound 1, {sup 3}J{sub HH} values measured from a P.E.COSY spectrum and interproton distances calculated from ROESY buildup curves indicated the presence of a single C8 ring backbone conformation where the trimethylene bridge adopted a staggered conformation and the H{alpha}1 and H{gamma}1 protons of the trimethylene group were 2.2 A from the methine proton. For compound 2, however, partial overlap of the central H{beta}1 and H{beta}2 protons made it impossible to measure {sup 3}J{sub HH} values from the P.E.COSY spectrum. We therefore used a {sup 13}C-filtered TOCSY experiment to measure the {sup 3}J{sub CH} values in both compounds 1 and 2. These heteronuclear vicinal coupling constants measured with {sup 13}C in natural abundance in conjunction with measured interproton NOE intensities indicate that these compounds share a common C8 ring backbone conformation.

  5. Chemically optimized antimyosin Fab conjugates with chelating polymers: importance of the nature of the protein-polymer single site covalent bond for biodistribution and infarction localization.

    PubMed

    Trubetskoy, V S; Narula, J; Khaw, B A; Torchilin, V P

    1993-01-01

    Murine antimyosin Fab fragment was conjugated with 111In-labeled N-terminal-modified DTPA-polylysine using three bifunctional reagents: N-hydroxysuccinimide esters of 3-(2-pyridyldithio)propionic acid (SPDP conjugate), 4-(maleimidomethyl)cyclohexanecarboxylic acid (SMCC conjugate) and bromoacetic acid (BrAc conjugate) for potential localization of experimental myocardial infarction. Using various antibody preparations and a rabbit acute myocardial infarction model the following parameters were observed: (1) an in vitro antigen binding activity of SPDP conjugate = SMCC conjugate > BrAc conjugate, (2) a blood clearance rate of SPDP conjugate > BrAc conjugate > SMCC conjugate, (3) a liver and splenic accumulation of SPDP conjugate > BrAc conjugate > SMCC conjugate, and (4) the infarcted tissue activity showed an accumulation of SMCC conjugate > SPDP conjugate > BrAc conjugate. This study exemplifies the importance of rational chemical design of antimyosin Fab-chelating polymer conjugate for improved target tissue localization in vivo.

  6. New insights on the nature of two-dimensional polarons in semiconducting polymers: Infrared absorption in poly(3-hexylthiophene)

    SciTech Connect

    Pochas, Christopher M.; Spano, Frank C.

    2014-06-28

    Infrared absorption of positively charged polarons in conjugated polymer chains and π-stacked aggregates is investigated theoretically, employing a Holstein-based Hamiltonian which treats electronic coupling, electron-vibrational coupling, and disorder on equal footing. The spectra evaluated from the Hamiltonian expressed in a one- and two-particle basis set are essentially exact, insofar as the main, aromatic-quinoidal vibrational mode is treated fully nonadiabatically. Diagonal and off-diagonal (“paracrystalline”) disorder are resolved along the polymer axis (x) and the aggregate stacking axis (y). Disorder along the polymer axis selectively attenuates the x-polarized spectrum, which is dominated by the polaron peak P{sub 1}. Disorder along the stacking axis selectively attenuates the y-polarized spectrum, which is dominated by the lower-energy charge-transfer peak, DP{sub 1}. Calculated spectra are in excellent agreement with the measured induced-absorption and charge-modulation spectra, reproducing the peak positions and relative peak intensities within a line shape rich in vibronic structure. Our nonadiabatic approach predicts the existence of a weak, x-polarized peak P{sub 0}, slightly blueshifted from DP{sub 1}. The peak is intrinsic to single polymer chains and appears in a region of the spectrum where narrow infrared active vibrational modes have been observed in nonaggregated conjugated polymers. The polaron responsible for P{sub 0} is composed mainly of two-particle wave functions and cannot be accounted for in the more conventional adiabatic treatments.

  7. New insights on the nature of two-dimensional polarons in semiconducting polymers: Infrared absorption in poly(3-hexylthiophene)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pochas, Christopher M.; Spano, Frank C.

    2014-06-01

    Infrared absorption of positively charged polarons in conjugated polymer chains and π-stacked aggregates is investigated theoretically, employing a Holstein-based Hamiltonian which treats electronic coupling, electron-vibrational coupling, and disorder on equal footing. The spectra evaluated from the Hamiltonian expressed in a one- and two-particle basis set are essentially exact, insofar as the main, aromatic-quinoidal vibrational mode is treated fully nonadiabatically. Diagonal and off-diagonal ("paracrystalline") disorder are resolved along the polymer axis (x) and the aggregate stacking axis (y). Disorder along the polymer axis selectively attenuates the x-polarized spectrum, which is dominated by the polaron peak P1. Disorder along the stacking axis selectively attenuates the y-polarized spectrum, which is dominated by the lower-energy charge-transfer peak, DP1. Calculated spectra are in excellent agreement with the measured induced-absorption and charge-modulation spectra, reproducing the peak positions and relative peak intensities within a line shape rich in vibronic structure. Our nonadiabatic approach predicts the existence of a weak, x-polarized peak P0, slightly blueshifted from DP1. The peak is intrinsic to single polymer chains and appears in a region of the spectrum where narrow infrared active vibrational modes have been observed in nonaggregated conjugated polymers. The polaron responsible for P0 is composed mainly of two-particle wave functions and cannot be accounted for in the more conventional adiabatic treatments.

  8. Abundance coefficients, a new method for measuring microorganism relative abundance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Forester, R.M.

    1977-01-01

    A new method of measuring the relative abundance of microorganisms by using a set of interrelated coefficients, termed 'abundance coefficients' or 'AC', is proposed. These coefficients provide a means of recording abundance for geometric density categories, and each density measurement represents an approximation of the Poisson parameter ??t. The AC is the natural logarithm of a 'characteristic value,' which is a particular number for each geometric density category. The 'characteristic values' are based upon a probabilistic error statement derived from the Poisson formula, and they present evidence for separation of the geometric category boundaries by e = 2.71828. The proposed AC provide a means for recording species abundance in a manner suitable for arithmetic manipulation, for population structure studies, and for the determination of practical limits for defining the presence or absence of a species. Further, these coefficients provide for both intrasample and intersample abundance comparisons. ?? 1977 Plenum Publishing Corporation.

  9. Spectroscopic Studies on Physicochemical Natures of Ion Exchangers and Highly Functional Polymers and Their Application to Analytical Chemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshimura, Kazuhisa

    The absorption spectra or NMR spectra of chemical species adsorbed on ion exchangers and highly functional polymers such as crosslinked dextran could be directly measured by the corresponding solution methods. Spectrophotometric measurements of a target species in the solid phase have been extended to solid phase spectrometry (SPS), based on the direct measurement of light-absorption by the solid phase, which has adsorbed the target analyte. SPS has employed two different procedures; i.e., batch and flow methods. The Lambert-Beer law could be applicable to the solid particle layer system. The sensitivity was proportional to the volume ratio of the solid and sample solution, giving more than 100 times the sensitivity obtainable with the combination of a 0.1 cm3 solid and a 10-100 cm3 sample for the batch method. An online measurement of the light attenuation by the adsorbed species in the flow-through cell made it possible to both significantly reduce the sample solution volume and to simplify the respective procedures for the derivatization of the analyte and packing the solid particles into the cell. Because the cross-linked dextran and similar glucopyranoside-based gels have polyol moieties in their gel matrix, they could be used as oxo acid-selective adsorbents without introducing any special functional groups. Especially, in the case of boric acid, 11B NMR spectroscopy was one of the best tools for elucidating the nature of the interaction between boric acid/borate and polyols. Its combination with other methods enabled basic understanding of the chemical reactions. Reaction paths for 1:1 complexation are in general divided into two groups, i.e., neutral polyols that directly react with tetrahedral borate, and acidic polyols that react with trigonal boric acid in a 1:1 complexation. Both of the reactions produce tetrahedral anionic complexes, followed by a condensation reaction between the 1:1 monochelate complex and the undissociated diols to yield the 1

  10. Dye-sensitized solar cell with natural gel polymer electrolytes and f-MWCNT as counter-electrode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nwanya, A. C.; Amaechi, C. I.; Ekwealor, A. B. C.; Osuji, R. U.; Maaza, M.; Ezema, F. I.

    2015-05-01

    Samples of DSSCs were made with gel polymer electrolytes using agar, gelatin and DNA as the polymer hosts. Anthocyanine dye from Hildegardia barteri flower is used to sensitize the TiO2 electrode, and the spectrum of the dye indicates strong absorptions in the blue region of the solar spectrum. The XRD pattern of the TiO2 shows that the adsorption of the dye did not affect the crystallinity of the electrode. The f-MWCNT indicates graphite structure of the MWCNTs were acid oxidized without significant damage. Efficiencies of 3.38 and 0.1% were obtained using gelatin and DNA gel polymer electrolytes, respectively, for the fabricated dye-sensitized solar cells.

  11. Microbial degradation of lignin: how a bulky recalcitrant polymer is efficiently recycled in nature and how we can take advantage of this

    PubMed Central

    Ruiz‐Dueñas, Francisco J.; Martínez, Ángel T.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Lignin is the second most abundant constituent of the cell wall of vascular plants, where it protects cellulose towards hydrolytic attack by saprophytic and pathogenic microbes. Its removal represents a key step for carbon recycling in land ecosystems, as well as a central issue for industrial utilization of plant biomass. The lignin polymer is highly recalcitrant towards chemical and biological degradation due to its molecular architecture, where different non‐phenolic phenylpropanoid units form a complex three‐dimensional network linked by a variety of ether and carbon–carbon bonds. Ligninolytic microbes have developed a unique strategy to handle lignin degradation based on unspecific one‐electron oxidation of the benzenic rings in the different lignin substructures by extracellular haemperoxidases acting synergistically with peroxide‐generating oxidases. These peroxidases posses two outstanding characteristics: (i) they have unusually high redox potential due to haem pocket architecture that enables oxidation of non‐phenolic aromatic rings, and (ii) they are able to generate a protein oxidizer by electron transfer to the haem cofactor forming a catalytic tryptophanyl‐free radical at the protein surface, where it can interact with the bulky lignin polymer. The structure–function information currently available is being used to build tailor‐made peroxidases and other oxidoreductases as industrial biocatalysts. PMID:21261911

  12. Gamma scintigraphic evaluation of floating gastroretentive tablets of metformin HCl using a combination of three natural polymers in rabbits

    PubMed Central

    Razavi, Mahboubeh; Karimian, Hamed; Yeong, Chai Hong; Chung, Lip Yong; Nyamathulla, Shaik; Noordin, Mohamed Ibrahim

    2015-01-01

    The present research was aimed at formulating a metformin HCl sustained-release formulation from a combination of polymers, using the wet granulation technique. A total of 16 formulations (F1–F16) were produced using different combinations of the gel-forming polymers: tamarind kernel powder, salep (palmate tubers of Orchis morio), and xanthan. Post-compression studies showed that there were no interactions between the active drug and the polymers. Results of in vitro drug-release studies indicated that the F10 formulation which contained 5 mg of tamarind kernel powder, 33.33 mg of xanthan, and 61.67 mg of salep could sustain a 95% release in 12 hours. The results also showed that F2 had a 55% similarity factor with the commercial formulation (C-ER), and the release kinetics were explained with zero order and Higuchi models. The in vivo study was performed in New Zealand White rabbits by gamma scintigraphy; the F10 formulation was radiolabeled using samarium (III) oxide (153Sm2O3) to trace transit of the tablets in the gastrointestinal tract. The in vivo data supported the retention of F10 formulation in the gastric region for 12 hours. In conclusion, the use of a combination of polymers in this study helped to develop an optimal gastroretentive drug-delivery system with improved bioavailability, swelling, and floating characteristics. PMID:26273196

  13. Gamma scintigraphic evaluation of floating gastroretentive tablets of metformin HCl using a combination of three natural polymers in rabbits.

    PubMed

    Razavi, Mahboubeh; Karimian, Hamed; Yeong, Chai Hong; Chung, Lip Yong; Nyamathulla, Shaik; Noordin, Mohamed Ibrahim

    2015-01-01

    The present research was aimed at formulating a metformin HCl sustained-release formulation from a combination of polymers, using the wet granulation technique. A total of 16 formulations (F1-F16) were produced using different combinations of the gel-forming polymers: tamarind kernel powder, salep (palmate tubers of Orchis morio), and xanthan. Post-compression studies showed that there were no interactions between the active drug and the polymers. Results of in vitro drug-release studies indicated that the F10 formulation which contained 5 mg of tamarind kernel powder, 33.33 mg of xanthan, and 61.67 mg of salep could sustain a 95% release in 12 hours. The results also showed that F2 had a 55% similarity factor with the commercial formulation (C-ER), and the release kinetics were explained with zero order and Higuchi models. The in vivo study was performed in New Zealand White rabbits by gamma scintigraphy; the F10 formulation was radiolabeled using samarium (III) oxide ((153)Sm2O3) to trace transit of the tablets in the gastrointestinal tract. The in vivo data supported the retention of F10 formulation in the gastric region for 12 hours. In conclusion, the use of a combination of polymers in this study helped to develop an optimal gastroretentive drug-delivery system with improved bioavailability, swelling, and floating characteristics. PMID:26273196

  14. Polymer films

    DOEpatents

    Granick, Steve; Sukhishvili, Svetlana A.

    2008-12-30

    A film contains a first polymer having a plurality of hydrogen bond donating moieties, and a second polymer having a plurality of hydrogen bond accepting moieties. The second polymer is hydrogen bonded to the first polymer.

  15. Polymer films

    DOEpatents

    Granick, Steve; Sukhishvili, Svetlana A.

    2004-05-25

    A film contains a first polymer having a plurality of hydrogen bond donating moieties, and a second polymer having a plurality of hydrogen bond accepting moieties. The second polymer is hydrogen bonded to the first polymer.

  16. Influence of natural organic matter on transport and retention of polymer coated silver nanoparticles in porous media.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xinyao; Lin, Shihong; Wiesner, Mark R

    2014-01-15

    Interactions between organic matter (OM) and engineered polymer coatings as they affect the retention of polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP) polymer-coated silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) were studied. Two distinct types of OM-cysteine representing low molecular weight multivalent functional groups, and Suwannee River Humic Acid (HA) representing high molecular weight polymers, were investigated with respect to their effects on particle stability in aggregation and deposition. Aggregation of the PVP coated AgNPs (PVP-AgNPs) was enhanced by cysteine addition at high ionic strengths, which was attributed to cysteine binding to the AgNPs and replacing the otherwise steric stabilizing agent PVP. In contrast the addition of HA did not increase aggregation rates and decreased PVP-AgNP deposition to the silica porous medium, consistent with enhanced electrosteric stabilization by the HA. Although cysteine also reduced deposition in the porous medium, the mechanisms of reduced deposition appear to be enhanced electric double layer (EDL) interaction at low ionic strengths. At higher ionic strengths, aggregation was favored leading to lower deposition due to smaller diffusion coefficients and single collector efficiencies despite the reduced EDL interactions. PMID:24295767

  17. Abundance, natural infection with trypanosomes, and food source of an endemic species of triatomine, Panstrongylus howardi (Neiva 1911), on the Ecuadorian Central Coast.

    PubMed

    Villacís, Anita G; Ocaña-Mayorga, Sofía; Lascano, Mauricio S; Yumiseva, César A; Baus, Esteban G; Grijalva, Mario J

    2015-01-01

    The elimination of domestic triatomines is the foundation of Chagas disease control. Regional initiatives are eliminating introduced triatomine species. In this scenario, endemic triatomines can occupy the ecological niches left open and become a threat to long-term Chagas disease control efforts. This study determined the abundance, colonization, and Trypanosoma cruzi infection rate of the endemic Panstrongylus howardi in 10 rural communities located in Ecuador's Manabí Province. In total, 518 individuals of P. howardi were collected. Infestation indices of 1.4% and 6.6% were found in the domestic and peridomestic environments, respectively. We determined a T. cruzi infection rate of 53.2% (N = 47) in this species. P. howardi has a high capacity to adapt to different habitats, especially in the peridomicile. This implies a considerable risk of transmission because of the frequency of intradomicile invasion. Therefore, this species needs to be taken into account in Chagas control and surveillance efforts in the region. PMID:25385867

  18. Abundance, Natural Infection with Trypanosomes, and Food Source of an Endemic Species of Triatomine, Panstrongylus howardi (Neiva 1911), on the Ecuadorian Central Coast

    PubMed Central

    Villacís, Anita G.; Ocaña-Mayorga, Sofía; Lascano, Mauricio S.; Yumiseva, César A.; Baus, Esteban G.; Grijalva, Mario J.

    2015-01-01

    The elimination of domestic triatomines is the foundation of Chagas disease control. Regional initiatives are eliminating introduced triatomine species. In this scenario, endemic triatomines can occupy the ecological niches left open and become a threat to long-term Chagas disease control efforts. This study determined the abundance, colonization, and Trypanosoma cruzi infection rate of the endemic Panstrongylus howardi in 10 rural communities located in Ecuador's Manabí Province. In total, 518 individuals of P. howardi were collected. Infestation indices of 1.4% and 6.6% were found in the domestic and peridomestic environments, respectively. We determined a T. cruzi infection rate of 53.2% (N = 47) in this species. P. howardi has a high capacity to adapt to different habitats, especially in the peridomicile. This implies a considerable risk of transmission because of the frequency of intradomicile invasion. Therefore, this species needs to be taken into account in Chagas control and surveillance efforts in the region. PMID:25385867

  19. Robust Abundance Estimation in Animal Abundance Surveys with Imperfect Detection

    EPA Science Inventory

    Surveys of animal abundance are central to the conservation and management of living natural resources. However, detection uncertainty complicates the sampling process of many species. One sampling method employed to deal with this problem is depletion (or removal) surveys in whi...

  20. Polymers Are Everywhere.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seymour, Raymond B.

    1988-01-01

    Describes the history of the human understanding of polymers from alchemy to modern times. Discusses renaissance chemistry, polymers in the nineteenth century, synthetic elastomers, thermoplastic elastomers, fibers, coatings, adhesives, derivatives of natural rubber, thermosets, step-reaction, and chain polymerization. (CW)

  1. Evaluation of relative isotopic abundance measurements in a quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometer for elemental composition determination of natural products in traditional Chinese medicine.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhi-Jun; Huo, Jia-Li; Chen, Jian-Zhong; Li, Na; Fang, Dong-Mei; Chen, Xiao-Zhen; Zhang, Guo-Lin; Wang, Jian-Hua; Xu, Xiao-Ying

    2013-01-01

    The relative isotopic abundance (RIA) measurement errors of a quadrupole time-of-flight (Q-ToF) instrument incorporating analog-to-digital converter detectors were systemically evaluated by stochastically collecting about 200 data in positive ion mass spectrometry (MS) mode. Errors varied with peak intensities at definite spectral acquisition rates but were very close, even if peak intensities changed sharply at different spectral acquisition rates with the same concentration. Intensity thresholds were systematically defined at 1 Hz of spectral acquisition rates. RIA measurement errors were also evaluated using peak area. It seemed that peak area was better adapted for the high-intensity ions while peak intensity was suited for very low-intensity ions. Several known compounds were selected for RIA measurements for product ions in tandem mass spectropmetry (MS/MS) mode. An extract of a representative traditional Chinese medicinal, Paederia scandens was analyzed with high-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-QToF-MS/MS. The unique elemental compositions of some compounds could not be identified even with exact masses and MS/MS spectra of measured and reference compounds. RIA errors, especially of (M+2)M(-1), provided vital information for determining the elemental composition. PMID:24261081

  2. Evaluation of relative isotopic abundance measurements in a quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometer for elemental composition determination of natural products in traditional Chinese medicine.

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhi-Jun; Huo, Jia-Li; Chen, Jian-Zhong; Li, Na; Fang, Dong-Mei; Chen, Xiao-Zhen; Zhang, Guo-Lin; Wang, Jian-Hua; Xu, Xiao-Ying

    2013-01-01

    The relative isotopic abundance (RIA) measurement errors of a quadrupole time-of-flight (Q-ToF) instrument incorporating analog-to-digital converter detectors were systemically evaluated by stochastically collecting about 200 data in positive ion mass spectrometry (MS) mode. Errors varied with peak intensities at definite spectral acquisition rates but were very close, even if peak intensities changed sharply at different spectral acquisition rates with the same concentration. Intensity thresholds were systematically defined at 1 Hz of spectral acquisition rates. RIA measurement errors were also evaluated using peak area. It seemed that peak area was better adapted for the high-intensity ions while peak intensity was suited for very low-intensity ions. Several known compounds were selected for RIA measurements for product ions in tandem mass spectropmetry (MS/MS) mode. An extract of a representative traditional Chinese medicinal, Paederia scandens was analyzed with high-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-QToF-MS/MS. The unique elemental compositions of some compounds could not be identified even with exact masses and MS/MS spectra of measured and reference compounds. RIA errors, especially of (M+2)M(-1), provided vital information for determining the elemental composition.

  3. On the mechanism of apatite-induced precipitation on 45S5 glass pellets coated with a natural-derived polymer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Araújo, Marco; Miola, Marta; Bertone, Elisa; Baldi, Giovanni; Perez, Javier; Verné, Enrica

    2015-10-01

    In this work, the bioactive glass 45S5 (also known by its commercial name Bioglass®) was successfully dip-coated by a natural derived biopolymer, increasing its apatite-forming ability. The biopolymer was shown to accelerate the first stages of bioactivity, inducing a fast transition to step 4 (formation of amorphous Casbnd P layer) in the apatite-forming ability mechanism. The faster precipitation of Ca/P crystals in the coated samples resulted in the formation of an intermediate amorphous octacalcium phosphate, which later transforms into an apatite layer with high thickness. The effect of the thickness of the coating was also studied on samples coated with polymer suspensions of different concentrations (0.15% and 1.5%, w/v), revealing that the kinetics of formation of the final hydroxycarbonate apatite layer increases with the thickness of the coating. The mechanism by which this apatite-forming ability is accelerated was also investigated, revealing that certain functional groups present in the structure of the polymer allow it to act as an organic matrix and preferential nucleation site for the growth of the hydroxycarbonate apatite layer.

  4. Sensitive Determination of Uranium in Natural Waters Using UV-Vis Spectrometry After Preconcentration by Ion-Imprinted Polymer-Ternary Complexes.

    PubMed

    Bicim, Tulin; Yaman, Mehmet

    2016-07-01

    The main purpose of this study was to achieve a substantial increase in the sensitivity of the uranium determination using UV-Vis spectrometry. To achieve this goal, ion-imprinted polymers were prepared for the uranyl (imprint) ion by the formation of a ternary (salicylaldoxime and 4-vinylpyridine) complex in 2-methoxy ethanol (porogen) following copolymerization with methacrylic acid. The synthesized polymers were characterized by FTIR analysis and thermogravimetric analysis. In the preconcentration step, the optimal pH was determined to be between values of 3.5 and 6.5. The adsorbed UO2(2+) was completely eluted by 10 mL of 3.0 mol L(-1) HClO4. The developed method was applied to uranium (VI) determination in natural water samples. By using the initial volume of 500 mL and final volume of 5 mL, a concentration of 1 μg L(-1) can be determined by applying the developed method in this study. PMID:27302914

  5. Evaluation of two molecularly imprinted polymers for the solid-phase extraction of natural, synthetic and mycoestrogens from environmental water samples before liquid chromatography with mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    González-Sálamo, Javier; Socas-Rodríguez, Bárbara; Hernández-Borges, Javier; Del Mar Afonso, María; Rodríguez-Delgado, Miguel Ángel

    2015-08-01

    In this work, we have compared the selectivity of two commercial molecularly imprinted polymers (AFFINIMIP®SPE Estrogens and AFFINIMIP®SPE Zearalenone) for the extraction of 12 estrogenic compounds of interest (i.e. 17α-estradiol, 17β-estradiol, estrone, hexestrol, 17α-ethynylestradiol, diethylstibestrol, dienestrol, zearalenone, α-zearalanol, β-zearalanol, α-zearalenol and β-zearalenol) from different water samples. High-performance liquid chromatography coupled with ion trap mass spectrometry with electrospray ionization was used for their determination. Results showed that although both molecularly imprinted polymeric cartridges were specifically designed for different groups of analytes (natural estrogens like estradiol in the first case and zearalenone derivatives in the second) they nearly have the same extraction performance (with recovery values in the range 65-101%) for the same analytes in Milli-Q water because of the cross-reactivity of the polymer. However, when more complex water samples were analyzed, it was clear that the behavior was different and that the AFFINIMIP®SPE Estrogens showed less cross-reactivity than the other cartridge. Validation of the proposed methodology with both cartridges revealed that the extraction was reproducible and that the final limits of detection of the proposed method were in the low ng/L range.

  6. Polymer-phyllosilicate nanocomposites and their preparation

    DOEpatents

    Chaiko, David J.

    2007-01-09

    Polymer-phyllosilicate nanocomposites that exhibit superior properties compared to the polymer alone, and methods-for producing these polymer-phyllosilicate nanocomposites, are provided. Polymeric surfactant compatabilizers are adsorbed onto the surface of hydrophilic or natural phyllosilicates to facilitate the dispersal and exfoliation of the phyllosilicate in a polymer matrix. Utilizing polymeric glycol based surfactants, polymeric dicarboxylic acids, polymeric diammonium surfactants, and polymeric diamine surfactants as compatabilizers facilitates natural phyllosilicate and hydrophilic organoclay dispersal in a polymer matrix to produce nanocomposites.

  7. A novel bio-degradable polymer stabilized Ag/TiO2 nanocomposites and their catalytic activity on reduction of methylene blue under natural sun light.

    PubMed

    Geetha, D; Kavitha, S; Ramesh, P S

    2015-11-01

    In the present work we defined a novel method of TiO2 doped silver nanocomposite synthesis and stabilization using bio-degradable polymers viz., chitosan (Cts) and polyethylene glycol (PEG). These polymers are used as reducing agents. The instant formation of AgNPs was analyzed by visual observation and UV-visible spectrophotometer. TiO2 nanoparticles doped at different concentrations viz., 0.03, 0.06 and 0.09mM on PEG/Cts stabilized silver (0.04wt%) were successfully synthesized. This study presents a simple route for the in situ synthesis of both metal and polymer confined within the nanomaterial, producing ternary hybrid inorganic-organic nanomaterials. The results reveal that they have higher photocatalytic efficiencies under natural sun light. The synthesized TiO2 doped Ag nanocomposites (NCs) were characterized by SEM/EDS, TEM, XRD, FTIR and DLS with zeta potential. The stability of Ag/TiO2 nanocomposite is due to the high negative values of zeta potential and capping of constituents present in the biodegradable polymer which is evident from zeta potential and FT-IR studies. The XRD and EDS pattern of synthesized Ag/TiO2 NCs showed their crystalline structure, with face centered cubic geometry oriented in (111) plane. AFM and DLS studies revealed that the diameter of stable Ag/TiO2 NCs was approximately 35nm. Moreover the catalytic activity of synthesize Ag/TiO2 NCs in the reduction of methylene blue was studied by UV-visible spectrophotometer. The synthesized Ag/TiO2 NCs are observed to have a good catalytic activity on the reduction of methylene blue by bio-degradable which is confirmed by the decrease in absorbance maximum value of methylene blue with respect to time using UV-vis spectrophotometer. The significant enhancement in the photocatalytic activity of Ag/TiO2 nanocomposites under sun light irradiation can be ascribed to the effect of noble metal Ag by acting as electron traps in TiO2 band gap.

  8. Detection and structural identification of dissolved organic matter in Antarctic glacial ice at natural abundance by SPR-W5-WATERGATE 1H NMR spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Pautler, Brent G; Simpson, André J; Simpson, Myrna J; Tseng, Li-Hong; Spraul, Manfred; Dubnick, Ashley; Sharp, Martin J; Fitzsimons, Sean J

    2011-06-01

    Dissolved organic matter (DOM) is ubiquitous in aquatic ecosystems and is derived from various inputs that control its turnover. Glaciers and ice sheets are the second largest water reservoir in the global hydrologic cycle, but little is known about glacial DOM composition or contributions to biogeochemical cycling. Here we employ SPR-W5-WATERGATE (1)H NMR spectroscopy to elucidate and quantify the chemical structures of DOM constituents in Antarctic glacial ice as they exist in their natural state (average DOC of 8 mg/L) without isolation or preconcentration. This Antarctic glacial DOM is predominantly composed of a mixture of small recognizable molecules differing from DOM in marine, lacustrine, and other terrestrial environments. The major constituents detected in three distinct types of glacial ice include lactic and formic acid, free amino acids, and a mixture of simple sugars and amino sugars with concentrations that vary between ice types. The detection of free amino acid and amino sugar monomer components of peptidoglycan within the ice suggests that Antarctic glacial DOM likely originates from in situ microbial activity. As these constituents are normally considered to be biologically labile (fast cycling) in nonglacial environments, accelerated glacier melt and runoff may result in a flux of nutrients into adjacent ecosystems.

  9. Assessment of marine-derived nutrients in the Copper River Delta, Alaska, using natural abundance of the stable isotopes of nitrogen, sulfur, and carbon

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kline, Thomas C.; Woody, Carol Ann; Bishop, Mary Anne; Powers, Sean P.; Knudsen, E. Eric

    2007-01-01

    We performed nitrogen, sulfur, and carbon stable isotope analysis (SIA) on maturing and juvenile anadromous sockeye and coho salmon, and periphyton in two Copper River delta watersheds of Alaska to trace salmonderived nutrients during 2003–2004. Maturing salmon were isotopically enriched relative to alternate freshwater N, S, and C sources as expected, with differences consistent with species trophic level differences, and minor system, sex, and year-to-year differences, enabling use of SIA to trace these salmon-derived nutrients. Periphyton naturally colonized, incubated, and collected using Wildco Periphtyon Samplers in and near spawning sites was 34S- and 15N-enriched, as expected, and at all freshwater sites was 13C-depleted. At nonspawning and coho-only sites, periphyton 34S and 15N was generally low. However, 34S was low enough at some sites to be suggestive of sulfate reduction, complicating the use of S isotopes. Juvenile salmon SIA ranged in values consistent with using production derived from re-mineralization as well as direct utilization, but only by a minority fraction of coho salmon. Dependency on salmon-derived nutrients ranged from relatively high to relatively low, suggesting a space-limited system. No one particular isotope was found to be superior for determining the relative importance of salmon-derived nutrients.

  10. Design of a polymer thermoelectric generator using radial architecture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menon, Akanksha K.; Yee, Shannon K.

    2016-02-01

    Thermoelectric generators (TEGs) are solid-state heat engines consisting of p-type and n-type semiconductors that convert heat into electricity via the Seebeck effect. Conducting polymers are a viable alternative with intrinsic advantages over their inorganic counterparts, since they are abundant, flexible as thick-films, and have reduced manufacturing costs due to solution processing. Furthermore, polymers have an inherently low thermal conductivity, thus affording them the option of forgoing some heat exchanger costs. Current examples of polymer TE devices have been limited to traditional flat-plate geometries with power densities on the μW/cm2 scale, where their potential is not fully realized. Herein, we report a novel radial device architecture and model the improved performance of polymer-based TEG based on this architecture. Our radial architecture accommodates a fluid as the heat source and can operate under natural convection alone due to heat spreading. Analytical heat transfer and electrical models are presented that optimize the device for maximum power density, and for the first time we obtain the geometry matching condition that maximizes the efficiency. We predict high power densities of ˜1 mW/cm2 using state-of-the-art polymer TEs subjected to a temperature difference of 100 K, which is nearly 1000× higher than polymer flat-plate architectures reported in literature.

  11. Encapsulation, solid-phases identification and leaching of toxic metals in cement systems modified by natural biodegradable polymers.

    PubMed

    Lasheras-Zubiate, M; Navarro-Blasco, I; Fernández, J M; Alvarez, J I

    2012-09-30

    Cement mortars loaded with Cr, Pb and Zn were modified by polymeric admixtures [chitosans with low (LMWCH), medium (MMWCH) and high (HMWCH) molecular weight and hydroxypropylchitosan (HPCH)]. The influence of the simultaneous presence of the heavy metal and the polymeric additive on the fresh properties (consistency, water retention and setting time) and on the compressive strength of the mortars was assessed. Leaching patterns as well as properties of the cement mortars were related to the heavy metals-bearing solid phases. Chitosan admixtures lessened the effect of the addition of Cr and Pb on the setting time. In all instances, chitosans improved the compressive strength of the Zn-bearing mortars yielding values as high as 15 N mm(-2). A newly reported Zn phase, dietrichite (ZnAl(2)(SO(4))(4)·22H(2)O) was identified under the presence of LMWCH: it was responsible for an improvement by 24% in Zn retention. Lead-bearing silicates, such as plumalsite (Pb(4)Al(2)(SiO(3))(7)), were also identified by XRD confirming that Pb was mainly retained as a part of the silicate network after Ca ion exchange. Also, the presence of polymer induced the appearance and stabilization of some Pb(IV) species. Finally, diverse chromate species were identified and related to the larger leaching values of Cr(VI).

  12. 13C Natural Abundance of Serum Retinol Is a Novel Biomarker for Evaluating Provitamin A Carotenoid-Biofortified Maize Consumption in Male Mongolian Gerbils123

    PubMed Central

    Pungarcher, India; Mourao, Luciana; Davis, Christopher R; Simon, Philipp; Pixley, Kevin V; Tanumihardjo, Sherry A

    2016-01-01

    Background: Crops such as maize, sorghum, and millet are being biofortified with provitamin A carotenoids to ensure adequate vitamin A (VA) intakes. VA assessment can be challenging because serum retinol concentrations are homeostatically controlled and more sensitive techniques are resource-intensive. Objectives: We investigated changes in serum retinol relative differences of isotope amount ratios of 13C/12C (δ13C) caused by natural 13C fractionation in C3 compared with C4 plants as a biomarker to detect provitamin A efficacy from biofortified (orange) maize and high-carotene carrots. Methods: The design was a 2 × 2 × 2 maize (orange compared with white) by carrot (orange compared with white) by a VA fortificant (VA+ compared with VA−) in weanling male Mongolian gerbils (n = 55), which included a 14-d VA depletion period and a 62-d treatment period (1 baseline and 8 treatment groups; n = 5−7/group). Liver VA and serum retinol were quantified, purified by HPLC, and analyzed by GC combustion isotope ratio mass spectrometry for 13C. Results: Treatments affected liver VA concentrations (0.048 ± 0.039 to 0.79 ± 0.24 μmol/g; P < 0.0001) but not overall serum retinol concentrations (1.38 ± 0.22 μmol/L). Serum retinol and liver VA δ13C were significantly correlated (R2 = 0.92; P < 0.0001). Serum retinol δ13C differentiated control groups that consumed white maize and white carrots (−27.1 ± 1.2 δ13C‰) from treated groups that consumed orange maize and white carrots (−21.6 ± 1.4 δ13C‰ P < 0.0001) and white maize and orange carrots (−30.6 ± 0.7 δ13C‰ P < 0.0001). A prediction model demonstrated the relative contribution of orange maize to total dietary VA for groups that consumed VA from mixed sources. Conclusions: Provitamin A efficacy and quantitative estimation of the relative contribution to dietary VA were demonstrated with the use of serum retinol δ13C. This method could be used for maize efficacy or effectiveness studies and with

  13. Polymers for engineering applications

    SciTech Connect

    Seymour, R.B.

    1987-01-01

    This book provides an introduction to the world of engineering plastics. It discusses the polymers, their properties strengths and limitations. There are 11 chapters, organized so that each chapter builds on the knowledge of the previous material. Coverage includes important polymer concepts, such as molecular structure, bonding, morphology and molecular weight, and polymer properties, such as thermal expansion, thermal transition, electrical properties and viscoelasticity. Details are provided on methods of processing fabrication and on specific families of polymers. The general-purpose polymers are discussed, such as natural and synthetic rubbers, rayon, acrylic and alkyd coatings, polyethylene, polystyrene and polyvinyl chloride (PVC). There's information on high-performance polymers - fibers, elastomers, and coatings. A thorough explanation of the characteristics and qualities of nylons, polyesters, polyimides, neoprene, silicones, polyurethanes and other polymers is given in the same section. Functional polymers with special properties, such as photoconductivity, electric conductivity, piezoelectricity, light sensitivity, and ion exchange; and polymers that are superior to general-purpose plastics, such as ABS, filled polypropylene, and glass-reinforced plastics, are also covered.

  14. Natural-abundance 15N NMR studies of Turkey ovomucoid third domain. Assignment of peptide 15N resonances to the residues at the reactive site region via proton-detected multiple-quantum coherence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz-Polo, Gilberto; Krishnamoorthi, R.; Markley, John L.; Live, David H.; Davis, Donald G.; Cowburn, David

    Heteronuclear two-dimensional 1H{ 15N} multiple-quantum (MQ) spectroscopy has been applied to a protein sample at natural abundance: ovomucoid third domain from turkey ( Meleagris gallopavo), a serine proteinase inhibitor of 56 amino acid residues. Peptide amide 1H NMR assignments obtained by two-dimensional 1H{ 1H} NMR methods (R. Krishnamoorthi and J. L. Markley, unpublished data) led to identification of the corresponding 1H{ 15N} MQ coherence cross peaks. From these, 15N NMR chemical shifts were determined for several specific backbone amide groups of amino acid residues located around the reactive site region of the inhibitor. The results suggest that amide 15N chemical shifts, which are readily obtained in this way, may serve as sensitive probes for conformational studies of proteins.

  15. Human and climate impact on ¹⁵N natural abundance of plants and soils in high-mountain ecosystems: a short review and two examples from the Eastern Pamirs and Mt. Kilimanjaro.

    PubMed

    Zech, Michael; Bimüller, Carolin; Hemp, Andreas; Samimi, Cyrus; Broesike, Christina; Hörold, Claudia; Zech, Wolfgang

    2011-09-01

    Population pressure increasingly endangers high-mountain ecosystems such as the pastures in the Eastern Pamirs and the mountain forests on Mt. Kilimanjaro. At the same time, these ecosystems constitute the economic basis for millions of people living there. In our study, we, therefore, aimed at characterising the land-use effects on soil degradation and N-cycling by determining the natural abundance of (15)N. A short review displays that δ(15)N of plant-soil systems may often serve as an integrated indicator of N-cycles with more positive δ(15)N values pointing towards N-losses. Results for the high-mountain pastures in the Eastern Pamirs show that intensively grazed pastures are significantly enriched in (15)N compared to the less-exploited pastures by 3.5 ‰, on average. This can be attributed to soil organic matter degradation, volatile nitrogen losses, nitrogen leaching and a general opening of the N-cycle. Similarly, the intensively degraded savanna soils, the cultivated soils and the soils under disturbed forests on the foothill of Mt. Kilimanjaro reveal very positive δ(15)N values around 6.5 ‰. In contrast, the undisturbed forest soils in the montane zone are more depleted in (15)N, indicating that here the N-cycle is relatively closed. However, significantly higher δ(15)N values characterise the upper montane forest zone at the transition to the subalpine zone. We suggest that this reflects N-losses by the recently monitored and climate change and antropogenically induced increasing fire frequency pushing the upper montane rainforest boundary rapidly downhill. Overall, we conclude that the analysis of the (15)N natural abundance in high-mountain ecosystems is a purposeful tool for detecting land-use- or climate change-induced soil degradation and N-cycle opening.

  16. Microgravity Polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1986-01-01

    A one-day, interactive workshop considering the effects of gravity on polymer materials science was held in Cleveland, Ohio, on May 9, 1985. Selected programmatic and technical issues were reviewed to introduce the field to workshop participants. Parallel discussions were conducted in three disciplinary working groups: polymer chemistry, polymer physics, and polymer engineering. This proceedings presents summaries of the workshop discussions and conclusions.

  17. Role of various natural, synthetic and semi-synthetic polymers on drug release kinetics of losartan potassium oral controlled release tablets

    PubMed Central

    Jayasree, J.; Sivaneswari, S.; Hemalatha, G.; Preethi, N.; Mounika, B.; Murthy, S. Vasudeva

    2014-01-01

    Objective: The objective of the present work was to formulate and to characterize controlled release matrix tablets of losartan potassium in order to improve bioavailability and to minimize the frequency of administration and increase the patient compliance. Materials and Methods: Losartan potassium controlled release matrix tablets were prepared by direct compression technique by the use of different natural, synthetic and semisynthetic polymers such as gum copal, gum acacia, hydroxypropyl methyl cellulose K100 (HPMC K100), eudragit RL 100 and carboxy methyl ethyl cellulose (CMEC) individually and also in combination. Studies were carried out to study the influence of type of polymer on drug release rate. All the formulations were subjected to physiochemical characterization such as weight variation, hardness, thickness, friability, drug content, and swelling index. In vitro dissolution studies were carried out simulated gastric fluid (pH 1.2) for first 2 h and followed by simulated intestinal fluid (pH 6.8) up to 24 h, and obtained dissolution data were fitted to in vitro release kinetic equations in order to know the order of kinetics and mechanism of drug release. Results and Discussion: Results of physiochemical characterization of losartan potassium matrix tablets were within acceptable limits. Formulation containing HPMC K100 and CMEC achieved the desired drug release profile up to 24 h followed zero order kinetics, release pattern dominated by Korsmeyer — Peppas model and mechanism of drug release by nonfickian diffusion. The good correlation obtained from Hixson-Crowell model indicates that changes in surface area of the tablet also influences the drug release. Conclusion: Based on the results, losartan potassium controlled release matrix tablets prepared by employing HPMC K100 and CMEC can attain the desired drug release up to 24 h, which results in maintaining steady state concentration and improving bioavailability. PMID:25426439

  18. Natural weathering studies of oil palm trunk lumber (OPTL) green polymer composites enhanced with oil palm shell (OPS) nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Nazrul; Dungani, Rudi; Abdul Khalil, Hps; Alwani, M Siti; Nadirah, Wo Wan; Fizree, H Mohammad

    2013-01-01

    In this study, a green composite was produced from Oil Palm Trunk Lumber (OPTL) by impregnating oil palm shell (OPS) nanoparticles with formaldehyde resin. The changes of physical, mechanical and morphological properties of the OPS nanoparticles impregnated OPTL as a result of natural weathering was investigated. The OPS fibres were ground with a ball-mill for producing nanoparticles before being mixed with the phenol formaldehyde (PF) resin at a concentration of 1, 3, 5 and 10% w/w basis and impregnated into the OPTL by vacuum-pressure method. The treated OPTL samples were exposed to natural weathering for the period of 6 and 12 months in West Java, Indonesia according to ASTM D1435-99 standard. Physical and mechanical tests were done for analyzing the changes in phenol formaldehyde-nanoparticles impregnated (PF-NPI) OPTL. FT-IR and SEM studies were done to analyze the morphological changes. The results showed that both exposure time of weathering and concentration of PF-NPI had significant impact on physical and mechanical properties of OPTL. The longer exposure of samples to weathering condition reduced the wave numbers during FT-IR test. However, all these physical, mechanical and morphological changes were significant when compared with the untreated samples or only PF impregnated samples. Thus, it can be concluded that PF-NP impregnation into OPTL improved the resistance against natural weathering and would pave the ground for improved products from OPTL for outdoor conditions.

  19. Porous polymer media

    DOEpatents

    Shepodd, Timothy J.

    2002-01-01

    Highly crosslinked monolithic porous polymer materials for chromatographic applications. By using solvent compositions that provide not only for polymerization of acrylate monomers in such a fashion that a porous polymer network is formed prior to phase separation but also for exchanging the polymerization solvent for a running buffer using electroosmotic flow, the need for high pressure purging is eliminated. The polymer materials have been shown to be an effective capillary electrochromatographic separations medium at lower field strengths than conventional polymer media. Further, because of their highly crosslinked nature these polymer materials are structurally stable in a wide range of organic and aqueous solvents and over a pH range of 2-12.

  20. pH effect on the mechanical performance and phase mobility of thermally processed wheat gluten-based natural polymer materials.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoqing; Hoobin, Pam; Burgar, Iko; Do, My Dieu

    2006-12-01

    The mechanical properties, phase composition, and molecular motions of thermally processed wheat gluten- (WG-) based natural polymer materials were studied by mechanical testing, dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA), and solid-state NMR spectroscopy. The performance of the materials was mainly determined by the denaturization and cross-linking occurring in the thermal processing and the nature or amount of plasticizers used. The pH effect also played an important role in the materials when water was used as the only plasticizer (WG-w). Alkaline conditions modified the chemical structure of WG, possibly via deamidation; enhanced the thermal cross-linking of WG macromolecules to form a more stable aggregation structure; and promoted intermolecular interactions between water and all components in WG (proteins, starch, and lipid), resulting in a strong adhesion among different components and phases. The saponification of lipid under alkaline conditions also enhanced the hydrophilicity of lipid and the miscibility among lipid, water, and WG components. However, when glycerol was used with water as a plasticizer (WG-wg), the phase mobility and composition of the materials mainly depended on the content of glycerol when the water content was constant. During thermal processing under either acidic or alkaline conditions, glycerol was unlikely to thermally cross-link with WG as suggested previously. The advanced mechanical performance of the WG-wg materials was attributed to the nature of hydrogen-bonding interactions between glycerol and WG components in the materials. This caused the whole material to behave like a strengthened "cross-linked" structure at room temperature due to the low mobility of glycerol. The pH effect on phase mobility and compositions of WG-wg systems was not as significant as that for WG-w materials.

  1. Supramolecular Polymers in Aqueous Media.

    PubMed

    Krieg, Elisha; Bastings, Maartje M C; Besenius, Pol; Rybtchinski, Boris

    2016-02-24

    This review discusses one-dimensional supramolecular polymers that form in aqueous media. First, naturally occurring supramolecular polymers are described, in particular, amyloid fibrils, actin filaments, and microtubules. Their structural, thermodynamic, kinetic, and nanomechanical properties are highlighted, as well as their importance for the advancement of biologically inspired supramolecular polymer materials. Second, five classes of synthetic supramolecular polymers are described: systems based on (1) hydrogen-bond motifs, (2) large π-conjugated surfaces, (3) host-guest interactions, (4) peptides, and (5) DNA. We focus on recent studies that address key challenges in the field, providing mechanistic understanding, rational polymer design, important functionality, robustness, or unusual thermodynamic and kinetic properties. PMID:26727633

  2. Solar abundance of osmium

    PubMed Central

    Jacoby, George; Aller, Lawrence H.

    1976-01-01

    The abundance parameter, log gfA, where g is the statistical weight of the lower level, f is the oscillator strength, and A is the abundance (by numbers of atoms with respect to hydrogen), has been derived for three lines of osmium by a method of spectrum synthesis. An apparent discordance of the derived abundance with that found from the carbonaceous chondrites is probably to be attributed primarily to errors in the f-values, and blending with unknown contributors. PMID:16592314

  3. Stardust Abundance Variations among Interplanetary Dust Particles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Messenger, S.; Keller, L. P.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Nguyen, A. N.; Walker, Robert M.

    2009-01-01

    Presolar grain abundances reflect the degree of processing primitive materials have experienced. This is evidenced by the wide range of silicate stardust abundances among primitive meteorites (10 to 300 ppm) [1], attributable to parent body hydrothermal processing. Stardust abundance variations are also pronounced in anhydrous interplanetary dust particles (CPIDPs), that have not experienced parent body processing (300 to > 10,000 ppm) [2-4]. The large range in stardust abundances among CP IDPs thus reflect nebular processing. Here we present results of a systematic search for stardust among cluster CP IDPs. Our goals are to establish mineralogical trends among IDPs with different stardust abundances. This may shed light into the nature of isotopically normal presolar grains (GEMS grains?; 5) if their abundances vary similarly to that of isotopically exotic stardust grains.

  4. Polymer Science Pilot Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maier, Mary L.

    1996-07-01

    Natural polymers such as cellulose, proteins, and DNA have been part of earth's store of chemicals long before chemists existed. However, polymers synthesized by chemists first appeared on this planet only sixty years ago. A veritable explosion of materials first known as plastics, later polymers, followed. Today polymers, natural and synthetic, are everywhere, and it is appropriate to include an introduction to polymers in the education of future scientists. The Polymer Science Pilot Program consists of a sequence of experiences with polymers, designed to focus upon the ways in which these materials resemble and/or compare with nonpolymers in physical properties, versatility, and function. The modular format makes it possible for educators to select specific sections of the program for integration into other college chemistry courses. The team learning aspect of he program can also be recommended to educators who select a specific module. When this program was presented at a Middle Atlantic Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society, some attendees were concerned about the limited number of participants as compared with the seemingly large number of college instructors. It was explained that the concentrated format of the four day program necessitates this instructor-to-student ratio; one class consisting of eighteen participants was tried and it was found that some aspects of the program, especially the research paper preparation, were not as thoroughly moderated.

  5. Understanding the nano- and macromechanical behaviour, the failure and fatigue mechanisms of advanced and natural polymer fibres by Raman/IR microspectrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colomban, Philippe

    2013-03-01

    The coupled mechanical and Raman/infrared (IR) analysis of the (nano)structure and texture of synthetic and natural polymer fibres (polyamides (PA66), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polypropylene (PP), poly(paraphenylene benzobisoxazole) (PBO), keratin/hair, Bombyx mori, Gonometa rufobrunea/postica Antheraea/Tussah silkworms and Nephila Madagascarensis spider silks) is applied so as to differentiate between crystalline and amorphous macromolecules. Bonding is very similar in the two cases but a broader distribution of conformations is observed for the amorphous macromolecules. These conclusions are then used to discuss the modifications induced by the application of a tensile or compressive stress, including the effects of fatigue. Detailed attention is paid to water and the inter-chain coupling for which the importance of hydrogen bonding is reconsidered. The significant role of the ‘amorphous’ bonds/domains in the process of fracture/fatigue is shown. Invited talk at the 6th International Workshop on Advanced Materials Science and Nanotechnology IWAMSN2012, 30 October-2 November 2012, Ha Long, Vietnam.

  6. The Bliss of Motor Abundance

    PubMed Central

    Latash, Mark L.

    2012-01-01

    Motor control is an area of natural science exploring how the nervous system interacts with other body parts and the environment to produce purposeful, coordinated actions. A central problem of motor control – the problem of motor redundancy – was formulated by Nikolai Bernstein as the problem of elimination of redundant degrees-of-freedom. Traditionally, this problem has been addressed using optimization methods based on a variety of cost functions. This review draws attention to a body of recent findings suggesting that the problem has been formulated incorrectly. An alternative view has been suggested as the principle of abundance, which considers the apparently redundant degrees-of-freedom as useful and even vital for many aspects of motor behavior. Over the past ten years, dozens of publications have provided support for this view based on the ideas of synergic control, computational apparatus of the uncontrolled manifold hypothesis, and the equilibrium-point (referent configuration) hypothesis. In particular, large amounts of “good variance” – variance in the space of elements that has no effect on the overall performance – have been documented across a variety of natural actions. “Good variance” helps an abundant system to deal with secondary tasks and unexpected perturbations; its amount shows adaptive modulation across a variety of conditions. These data support the view that there is no problem of motor redundancy; there is bliss of motor abundance. PMID:22246105

  7. Piezoelectric Polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harrison, J. S.; Ounaies, Z.; Bushnell, Dennis M. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The purpose of this review is to detail the current theoretical understanding of the origin of piezoelectric and ferroelectric phenomena in polymers; to present the state-of-the-art in piezoelectric polymers and emerging material systems that exhibit promising properties; and to discuss key characterization methods, fundamental modeling approaches, and applications of piezoelectric polymers. Piezoelectric polymers have been known to exist for more than forty years, but in recent years they have gained notoriety as a valuable class of smart materials.

  8. Application of Natural Isotopic Abundance ¹H-¹³C- and ¹H-¹⁵N-Correlated Two-Dimensional NMR for Evaluation of the Structure of Protein Therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Arbogast, Luke W; Brinson, Robert G; Marino, John P

    2016-01-01

    Methods for characterizing the higher-order structure of protein therapeutics are in great demand for establishing consistency in drug manufacturing, for detecting drug product variations resulting from modifications in the manufacturing process, and for comparing a biosimilar to an innovator reference product. In principle, solution NMR can provide a robust approach for characterization of the conformation(s) of protein therapeutics in formulation at atomic resolution. However, molecular weight limitations and the perceived need for stable isotope labeling have to date limited its practical applications in the biopharmaceutical industry. Advances in NMR magnet and console technologies, cryogenically cooled probes, and new rapid acquisition methodologies, particularly selective optimized flip-angle short transient pulse schemes and nonuniform sampling, have greatly ameliorated these limitations. Here, we describe experimental methods for the collection and analysis of 2D (1)H(N)-(15)N-amide- and (1)H-(13)C-methyl-correlated spectra applied to protein drug products at natural isotopic abundance, including representatives from the rapidly growing class of monoclonal antibody (mAb) therapeutics. Practical aspects of experimental setup and data acquisition for both standard and rapid acquisition NMR techniques are described. Furthermore, strategies for the statistical comparison of 2D (1)H(N)-(15)N-amide- and (1)H-(13)C-methyl-correlated spectra are detailed.

  9. In vivo characterization of fatty acids in human adipose tissue using natural abundance 1H decoupled 13C MRS at 1.5 T: clinical applications to dietary therapy.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Jong-Hee; Bluml, Stefan; Leaf, Alexander; Ross, Brian D

    2003-05-01

    Natural abundance proton-decoupled (13)C magnetic resonance spectroscopy was used to establish the in vivo lipid composition of normal adipose tissue and the corresponding effects of altered lipid diets. Experiments were performed on a standard 1.5 T clinical MR scanner using a double-tuned (1)H-(13)C coil. Peaks from double-bonded and methylene carbons were analyzed. Normal lipid composition was established in 20 control subjects. For comparison, five subjects on altered lipid diets were studied. Four subjects were on a fish oil supplement diet or predominantly seafood diet (polyunsaturated fatty acids), and one subject was on a Lorenzo's oil diet (monounsaturated fatty acids). Well-resolved (13)C spectra were obtained from the calf adipose tissue with a total acquisition time of 10 min. Model oil solutions were used to identify specific (13)C resonances. Subjects on lipid diets showed significantly elevated levels of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids for Lorenzo's and fish oil diets, respectively. We conclude that (13)C MR spectroscopy can readily detect changes in lipid composition due to medium- and long-term therapeutic lipid diets. Since the examination is rapid, robust and noninvasive, opportunities arise for large clinical trials of preventive or therapeutic diets to be performed with (13)C MRS on a clinical MR scanner.

  10. Measurement of Small One-Bond Proton-Carbon Residual Dipolar Coupling Constants in Partially Oriented 13C Natural Abundance Oligosaccharide Samples: Analysis of Heteronuclear 1JCH-Modulated Spectra with the BIRD Inversion Pulse

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pham, Tran Nghia; Liptaj, Tibor; Bromek, Krystyna; Uhrín, Dušan

    2002-08-01

    Two 2D J-modulated HSQC-based experiments were designed for precise determination of small residual dipolar one-bond carbon-proton coupling constants in 13C natural abundance carbohydrates. Crucial to the precision of a few hundredths of Hz achieved by these methods was the use of long modulation intervals and BIRD pulses, which acted as semiselective inversion pulses. The BIRD pulses eliminated effective evolution of all but 1JCH couplings, resulting in signal modulation that can be described by simple modulation functions. A thorough analysis of such modulation functions for a typical four-spin carbohydrate spin system was performed for both experiments. The results showed that the evolution of the 1H- 1H and long-range 1H- 13C couplings during the BIRD pulses did not necessitate the introduction of more complicated modulation functions. The effects of pulse imperfections were also inspected. While weakly coupled spin systems can be analyzed by simple fitting of cross peak intensities, in strongly coupled spin systems the evolution of the density matrix needs to be considered in order to analyse data accurately. However, if strong coupling effects are modest the errors in coupling constants determined by the "weak coupling" analysis are of similar magnitudes in oriented and isotropic samples and are partially cancelled during dipolar coupling calculation. Simple criteria have been established as to when the strong coupling treatment needs to be invoked.

  11. Ion implantation in polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wintersgill, M. C.

    1984-02-01

    An introductory overview will be given of the effects of ion implantation on polymers, and certain areas will be examined in more detail. Radiation effects in general and ion implantation in particular, in the field of polymers, present a number of contrasts with those in ionic crystals, the most obvious difference being that the chemical effects of both the implanted species and the energy transfer to the host may profoundly change the nature of the target material. Common effects include crosslinking and scission of polymer chains, gas evolution, double bond formation and the formation of additional free radicals. Research has spanned the chemical processes involved, including polymerization reactions achievable only with the use of radiation, to applied research dealing both with the effects of radiation on polymers already in commercial use and the tailoring of new materials to specific applications. Polymers are commonly divided into two groups, in describing their behavior under irradiation. Group I includes materials which form crosslinks between molecules, whereas Group II materials tend to degrade. In basic research, interest has centered on Group I materials and of these polyethylene has been studied most intensively. Applied materials research has investigated a variety of polymers, particularly those used in cable insulation, and those utilized in ion beam lithography of etch masks. Currently there is also great interest in enhancing the conducting properties of polymers, and these uses would tend to involve the doping capabilities of ion implantation, rather than the energy deposition.

  12. Photoaddressable Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bieringer, T.

    Polymers are the perfect materials for a variety of applications in almost every field of technical as well as human life. Because of their macromolecular architecture there are a lot of degrees of freedom in the synthesis of polymers. Owing to the change of their functional composition, they can be tailored even for quite difficult demands. Since a whole industry deals with the processing of polymers, cheap production lines have been developed for almost every polymer. This is the reason why not only the molecular composition but even the price of polymers has been optimized. Therefore these materials can be considered as encouraging components even in highly sophisticated areas of applications.

  13. OXYGEN ABUNDANCES IN CEPHEIDS

    SciTech Connect

    Luck, R. E.; Andrievsky, S. M.; Korotin, S. N.; Kovtyukh, V. V. E-mail: serkor@skyline.od.ua E-mail: scan@deneb1.odessa.ua

    2013-07-01

    Oxygen abundances in later-type stars, and intermediate-mass stars in particular, are usually determined from the [O I] line at 630.0 nm, and to a lesser extent, from the O I triplet at 615.7 nm. The near-IR triplets at 777.4 nm and 844.6 nm are strong in these stars and generally do not suffer from severe blending with other species. However, these latter two triplets suffer from strong non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) effects and thus see limited use in abundance analyses. In this paper, we derive oxygen abundances in a large sample of Cepheids using the near-IR triplets from an NLTE analysis, and compare those abundances to values derived from a local thermodynamic equilibrium (LTE) analysis of the [O I] 630.0 nm line and the O I 615.7 nm triplet as well as LTE abundances for the 777.4 nm triplet. All of these lines suffer from line strength problems making them sensitive to either measurement complications (weak lines) or to line saturation difficulties (strong lines). Upon this realization, the LTE results for the [O I] lines and the O I 615.7 nm triplet are in adequate agreement with the abundance from the NLTE analysis of the near-IR triplets.

  14. Interstellar Abundance Standards Revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sofia, Ulysses J.; Meyer, David M.

    2001-06-01

    We evaluate the stellar abundances often used to represent the total (gas plus dust) composition of the interstellar medium. Published abundances for B stars, young later type (F and G) stars, and the Sun are compared to the modeled dust-phase and measured gas-phase compositions of the interstellar medium. This study uses abundances for the five most populous elements in dust grains-C, O, Mg, Si, and Fe-and the cosmically abundant element, N. We find that B stars have metal abundances that are too low to be considered valid representations of the interstellar medium. The commonly invoked interstellar standard that is two-thirds of the solar composition is also rejected by recent observations. Young (<=2 Gyr) F and G disk stars and the Sun, however, cannot be ruled out as reliable proxies for the total interstellar composition. If their abundances are valid representations of the interstellar medium, then the apparent underabundance of carbon with respect to that required by dust models, i.e., the carbon crisis, is substantially eased.

  15. Molecularly imprinted polymer applied to the selective isolation of urinary steroid hormones: an efficient tool in the control of natural steroid hormones abuse in cattle.

    PubMed

    Doué, Mickael; Bichon, Emmanuelle; Dervilly-Pinel, Gaud; Pichon, Valérie; Chapuis-Hugon, Florence; Lesellier, Eric; West, Caroline; Monteau, Fabrice; Le Bizec, Bruno

    2012-12-28

    The use of anabolic substances to promote growth in livestock is prohibited within the European Union as laid down in Directive 96/22/EC. Nowadays, efficient methods such as steroid profiling or isotopic deviation measurements allow to control natural steroid hormones abuse. In both cases, urine is often selected as the most relevant matrix and, due to its relatively high content of potential interferents, its preparation before analysis is considered as a key step. In this context, the use of a selective sorbent such as molecularly imprinted polymer (MIP) was investigated. A MIP was synthesized based on 17β-estradiol, methacrylic acid and acetonitrile as template, monomer and porogen, respectively. Two approaches were then tested for non-conjugated (aglycons and glucuronides deconjugated) steroid purification: (i) molecularly imprinted solid phase extraction (MISPE) and (ii) semi-preparative supercritical fluid chromatography with a commercial MIP as stationary phase (SFC-MIP). Parameters for both approaches were optimized based on the main bovine metabolites of testosterone, estradiol, nandrolone and boldenone. The MISPE protocol developed for screening purposes allowed satisfactory recoveries (upper 65% for the 12 target steroids) with sufficient purification for gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis. For confirmatory purposes, the use of isotopic ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) requires a higher degree of purity of the target compounds, which can be reached by the SFC-MIP protocol with three steps less compared to the official and current method. Purity, concentration and absence of isotopic fractionation of target steroids extracted from urine of treated cattle (treated with testosterone, estradiol, androstenedione, and boldenone) allowed the measurement of (13)C/(12)C isotopic ratios of corresponding metabolites and endogenous reference compounds (ERC) and proved the relevance of the strategy.

  16. Binary Polymer Brushes of Strongly Immiscible Polymers.

    PubMed

    Chu, Elza; Babar, Tashnia; Bruist, Michael F; Sidorenko, Alexander

    2015-06-17

    The phenomenon of microphase separation is an example of self-assembly in soft matter and has been observed in block copolymers (BCPs) and similar materials (i.e., supramolecular assemblies (SMAs) and homo/block copolymer blends (HBCs)). In this study, we use microphase separation to construct responsive polymer brushes that collapse to generate periodic surfaces. This is achieved by a chemical reaction between the minor block (10%, poly(4-vinylpyridine)) of the block copolymer and a substrate. The major block of polystyrene (PS) forms mosaic-like arrays of grafted patches that are 10-20 nm in size. Depending on the nature of the assembly (SMA, HBC, or neat BCP) and annealing method (exposure to vapors of different solvents or heating above the glass transition temperature), a range of "mosaic" brushes with different parameters can be obtained. Successive grafting of a secondary polymer (polyacrylamide, PAAm) results in the fabrication of binary polymer brushes (BPBs). Upon being exposed to specific selective solvents, BPBs may adopt different conformations. The surface tension and adhesion of the binary brush are governed by the polymer occupying the top stratum. The "mosaic" brush approach allows for a combination of strongly immiscible polymers in one brush. This facilitates substantial contrast in the surface properties upon switching, previously only possible for substrates composed of predetermined nanostructures. We also demonstrate a possible application of such PS/PAAm brushes in a tunable bioadhesion-bioadhesive (PS on top) or nonbioadhesive (PAAm on top) surface as revealed by Escherichia coli bacterial seeding.

  17. Species Abundance Patterns in Complex Evolutionary Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tokita, Kei

    2004-10-01

    An analytic theory of species abundance patterns (SAPs) in biological networks is presented. The theory is based on multispecies replicator dynamics equivalent to the Lotka-Volterra equation, with diverse interspecies interactions. Various SAPs observed in nature are derived from a single parameter. The abundance distribution is formed like a widely observed left-skewed lognormal distribution. As the model has a general form, the result can be applied to similar patterns in other complex biological networks, e.g., gene expression.

  18. Biosynthetic Polymers as Functional Materials

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The synthesis of functional polymers encoded with biomolecules has been an extensive area of research for decades. As such, a diverse toolbox of polymerization techniques and bioconjugation methods has been developed. The greatest impact of this work has been in biomedicine and biotechnology, where fully synthetic and naturally derived biomolecules are used cooperatively. Despite significant improvements in biocompatible and functionally diverse polymers, our success in the field is constrained by recognized limitations in polymer architecture control, structural dynamics, and biostabilization. This Perspective discusses the current status of functional biosynthetic polymers and highlights innovative strategies reported within the past five years that have made great strides in overcoming the aforementioned barriers. PMID:27375299

  19. Preparation and degradation mechanisms of biodegradable polymer: a review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, S. H.; Duan, P. P.; Shen, M. X.; Xue, Y. J.; Wang, Z. Y.

    2016-07-01

    Polymers are difficult to degrade completely in Nature, and their catabolites may pollute the environment. In recent years, biodegradable polymers have become the hot topic in people's daily life with increasing interest, and a controllable polymer biodegradation is one of the most important directions for future polymer science. This article presents the main preparation methods for biodegradable polymers and discusses their degradation mechanisms, the biodegradable factors, recent researches and their applications. The future researches of biodegradable polymers are also put forward.

  20. The effect of drought and interspecific interactions on the depth of water uptake in deep- and shallow-rooting grassland species as determined by δ18O natural abundance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoekstra, N. J.; Finn, J. A.; Lüscher, A.

    2014-03-01

    Increased incidence of weather drought, as predicted under climate change, has the potential to negatively affect grassland production. Compared to monocultures, vertical belowground niche complementarity between shallow- and deep-rooting species may be an important mechanism resulting in higher yields and higher resistance to drought in grassland mixtures. However, very little is known about the belowground responses in grassland systems and increased insight into these processes may yield important information both to predict the effect of future climate change and better design agricultural systems to cope with this. This study assessed the effect of a 10-week experimental summer drought on the depth of water uptake of two shallow-rooting species (Lolium perenne L. and Trifolium repens L.) and two deep-rooting species (Chicorium intybus L. and Trifolium pratense L.) in grassland monocultures and four-species-mixtures by using the natural abundance δ18O isotope method. We tested the following hypotheses: (1) drought results in a shift of water uptake to deeper soil layers, (2) deep-rooting species take up a higher proportion of water from deeper soil layers relative to shallow-rooting species, (3) as a result of interspecific interactions in mixtures, the water uptake of shallow-rooting species become shallower when grown together with deep-rooting species and vice versa, resulting in reduced niche overlap. The natural abundance δ18O technique provided novel insights into the depth of water uptake of deep- and shallow- rooting grassland species and revealed large shifts in response to drought and interspecific interactions. Compared to control conditions, drought reduced the proportional water uptake from 0-10 cm soil depth (PCWU0-10) of L. perenne, T. repens and C. intybus in monocultures by on average 54%. In contrast, the PCWU0-10 of T. pratense in monoculture increased by 44%, and only when grown in mixture did the PCWU0-10 of T. pratense decrease under

  1. Abundance estimation and conservation biology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, J.D.; MacKenzie, D.I.

    2004-01-01

    Abundance is the state variable of interest in most population–level ecological research and in most programs involving management and conservation of animal populations. Abundance is the single parameter of interest in capture–recapture models for closed populations (e.g., Darroch, 1958; Otis et al., 1978; Chao, 2001). The initial capture–recapture models developed for partially (Darroch, 1959) and completely (Jolly, 1965; Seber, 1965) open populations represented efforts to relax the restrictive assumption of population closure for the purpose of estimating abundance. Subsequent emphases in capture–recapture work were on survival rate estimation in the 1970’s and 1980’s (e.g., Burnham et al., 1987; Lebreton et al.,1992), and on movement estimation in the 1990’s (Brownie et al., 1993; Schwarz et al., 1993). However, from the mid–1990’s until the present time, capture–recapture investigators have expressed a renewed interest in abundance and related parameters (Pradel, 1996; Schwarz & Arnason, 1996; Schwarz, 2001). The focus of this session was abundance, and presentations covered topics ranging from estimation of abundance and rate of change in abundance, to inferences about the demographic processes underlying changes in abundance, to occupancy as a surrogate of abundance. The plenary paper by Link & Barker (2004) is provocative and very interesting, and it contains a number of important messages and suggestions. Link & Barker (2004) emphasize that the increasing complexity of capture–recapture models has resulted in large numbers of parameters and that a challenge to ecologists is to extract ecological signals from this complexity. They offer hierarchical models as a natural approach to inference in which traditional parameters are viewed as realizations of stochastic processes. These processes are governed by hyperparameters, and the inferential approach focuses on these hyperparameters. Link & Barker (2004) also suggest that our attention

  2. Recombinant protein polymers in biomaterials.

    PubMed

    Kim, Wookhyun

    2013-01-01

    Naturally occurring protein-based materials have been found that function as critical components in biomechanical response, fibers and adhesives. A relatively small but growing number of recombinant protein-based materials that mimic the desired features of their natural sources, such as collagens, elastins and silks, are considered as an alternative to conventional synthetic polymers. Advances in genetic engineering have facilitated the synthesis of repetitive protein polymers with precise control of molecular weights which are designed by using synthetic genes encoding tandem repeats of oligopeptide originating from a modular domain of natural proteins. Many repeat sequences as protein polymer building blocks adopt a well-defined secondary structure and undergo self-assembly to result in physically cross-linked networks or with chemical cross-linking so that further form three-dimensional architectures similar to natural counterparts. In this review, recombinant protein polymers currently developed will be presented that have emerged as promising class of next generation biomaterials. PMID:23276922

  3. Polymer adsorption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joanny, Jean-Francois

    2008-03-01

    The aim of this talk is to review Pierre-Gilles deGennes' work on polymer adsorption and the impact that it has now in our understanding of this problem. We will first present the self-consistent mean-field theory and its applications to adsorption and depletion. De Gennes most important contribution is probably the derivation of the self-similar power law density profile for adsorbed polymer layers that we will present next, emphasizing the differences between the tail sections and the loop sections of the adsorbed polymers. We will then discuss the kinetics of polymer adsorption and the penetration of a new polymer chain in an adsobed layer that DeGennes described very elegantly in analogy with a quantum tunneling problem. Finally, we will discuss the role of polymer adsorption for colloid stabilization.

  4. Solar abundance of platinum

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Harry; Aller, Lawrence H.

    1975-01-01

    Three lines of neutral platinum, located at λ 2997.98 Å, λ 3064.71 Å, and λ 3301.86 Å have been used to determine the solar platinum abundance by the method of spectral synthesis. On the scale, log A(H) = 12.00, the thus-derived solar platinum abundance is 1.75 ± 0.10, in fair accord with Cameron's value of log A(Pt) = 1.69 derived by Mason from carbonaceous chondrites and calculated on the assumption that log A(Si) = 7.55 in the sun. PMID:16592278

  5. Polymer Chemistry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, Martha; Roberson, Luke; Caraccio, Anne

    2010-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation describes new technologies in polymer and material chemistry that benefits NASA programs and missions. The topics include: 1) What are Polymers?; 2) History of Polymer Chemistry; 3) Composites/Materials Development at KSC; 4) Why Wiring; 5) Next Generation Wiring Materials; 6) Wire System Materials and Integration; 7) Self-Healing Wire Repair; 8) Smart Wiring Summary; 9) Fire and Polymers; 10) Aerogel Technology; 11) Aerogel Composites; 12) Aerogels for Oil Remediation; 13) KSC's Solution; 14) Chemochromic Hydrogen Sensors; 15) STS-130 and 131 Operations; 16) HyperPigment; 17) Antimicrobial Materials; 18) Conductive Inks Formulations for Multiple Applications; and 19) Testing and Processing Equipment.

  6. Star Polymers.

    PubMed

    Ren, Jing M; McKenzie, Thomas G; Fu, Qiang; Wong, Edgar H H; Xu, Jiangtao; An, Zesheng; Shanmugam, Sivaprakash; Davis, Thomas P; Boyer, Cyrille; Qiao, Greg G

    2016-06-22

    Recent advances in controlled/living polymerization techniques and highly efficient coupling chemistries have enabled the facile synthesis of complex polymer architectures with controlled dimensions and functionality. As an example, star polymers consist of many linear polymers fused at a central point with a large number of chain end functionalities. Owing to this exclusive structure, star polymers exhibit some remarkable characteristics and properties unattainable by simple linear polymers. Hence, they constitute a unique class of technologically important nanomaterials that have been utilized or are currently under audition for many applications in life sciences and nanotechnologies. This article first provides a comprehensive summary of synthetic strategies towards star polymers, then reviews the latest developments in the synthesis and characterization methods of star macromolecules, and lastly outlines emerging applications and current commercial use of star-shaped polymers. The aim of this work is to promote star polymer research, generate new avenues of scientific investigation, and provide contemporary perspectives on chemical innovation that may expedite the commercialization of new star nanomaterials. We envision in the not-too-distant future star polymers will play an increasingly important role in materials science and nanotechnology in both academic and industrial settings.

  7. Abundances of light elements.

    PubMed Central

    Pagel, B E

    1993-01-01

    Recent developments in the study of abundances of light elements and their relevance to cosmological nucleosynthesis are briefly reviewed. The simplest model, based on standard cosmology and particle physics and assuming homogeneous baryon density at the relevant times, continues to stand up well. PMID:11607388

  8. Micromechanical model for isolated polymer-colloid clusters under tension

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dargazany, Roozbeh; Lin, Jiaqi; Khalili, Leila; Itskov, Mikhail; Chen, Hsieh; Alexander-Katz, Alfredo

    2016-10-01

    Binary polymer-colloid (PC) composites form the majority of biological load-bearing materials. Due to the abundance of the polymer and particles, and their simple aggregation process, PC clusters are used broadly by nature to create biomaterials with a variety of functions. However, our understanding of the mechanical features of the clusters and their load transfer mechanism is limited. Our main focus in this paper is the elastic behavior of close-packed PC clusters formed in the presence of polymer linkers. Therefore, a micromechanical model is proposed to predict the constitutive behavior of isolated polymer-colloid clusters under tension. The mechanical response of a cluster is considered to be governed by a backbone chain, which is the stress path that transfers most of the applied load. The developed model can reproduce the mean behavior of the clusters and is not dependent on their local geometry. The model utilizes four geometrical parameters for defining six shape descriptor functions which can affect the geometrical change of the clusters in the course of deformation. The predictions of the model are benchmarked against an extensive set of simulations by coarse-grained-Brownian dynamics, where clusters with different shapes and sizes were considered. The model exhibits good agreement with these simulations, which, besides its relative simplicity, makes the model an excellent add-on module for implementation into multiscale models of nanocomposites.

  9. On protein abundance distributions in complex mixtures

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Mass spectrometry, an analytical technique that measures the mass-to-charge ratio of ionized atoms or molecules, dates back more than 100 years, and has both qualitative and quantitative uses for determining chemical and structural information. Quantitative proteomic mass spectrometry on biological samples focuses on identifying the proteins present in the samples, and establishing the relative abundances of those proteins. Such protein inventories create the opportunity to discover novel biomarkers and disease targets. We have previously introduced a normalized, label-free method for quantification of protein abundances under a shotgun proteomics platform (Griffin et al., 2010). The introduction of this method for quantifying and comparing protein levels leads naturally to the issue of modeling protein abundances in individual samples. We here report that protein abundance levels from two recent proteomics experiments conducted by the authors can be adequately represented by Sichel distributions. Mathematically, Sichel distributions are mixtures of Poisson distributions with a rather complex mixing distribution, and have been previously and successfully applied to linguistics and species abundance data. The Sichel model can provide a direct measure of the heterogeneity of protein abundances, and can reveal protein abundance differences that simpler models fail to show. PMID:23360617

  10. Polymers & People

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lentz, Linda; Robinson, Thomas; Martin, Elizabeth; Miller, Mary; Ashburn, Norma

    2004-01-01

    Each Tuesday during the fall of 2002, teams of high school students from three South Carolina counties conducted a four-hour polymer institute for their peers. In less than two months, over 300 students visited the Charleston County Public Library in Charleston, South Carolina, to explore DNA, nylon, rubber, gluep, and other polymers. Teams of…

  11. Nanoparticles from renewable polymers

    PubMed Central

    Wurm, Frederik R.; Weiss, Clemens K.

    2014-01-01

    The use of polymers from natural resources can bring many benefits for novel polymeric nanoparticle systems. Such polymers have a variety of beneficial properties such as biodegradability and biocompatibility, they are readily available on large scale and at low cost. As the amount of fossil fuels decrease, their application becomes more interesting even if characterization is in many cases more challenging due to structural complexity, either by broad distribution of their molecular weights (polysaccharides, polyesters, lignin) or by complex structure (proteins, lignin). This review summarizes different sources and methods for the preparation of biopolymer-based nanoparticle systems for various applications. PMID:25101259

  12. Nanoparticles from Renewable Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wurm, Frederik; Weiss, Clemens

    2014-07-01

    The use of polymers from natural resources can bring many benefits for novel polymeric nanoparticle systems. Such polymers have a variety of beneficial properties such as biodegradability and biocompatibility, they are readily available on large scale and at low cost. As the amount of fossil fuels decrease, their application becomes more interesting even if characterization is in many cases more challenging due to structural complexity, either by broad distribution of their molecular weights polysaccharides, polyesters, lignin) or by complex structure (proteins, lignin). This review summarizes different sources and methods for the preparation of biopolymer-based nanoparticle systems for various applications.

  13. Nanoparticles from renewable polymers.

    PubMed

    Wurm, Frederik R; Weiss, Clemens K

    2014-01-01

    The use of polymers from natural resources can bring many benefits for novel polymeric nanoparticle systems. Such polymers have a variety of beneficial properties such as biodegradability and biocompatibility, they are readily available on large scale and at low cost. As the amount of fossil fuels decrease, their application becomes more interesting even if characterization is in many cases more challenging due to structural complexity, either by broad distribution of their molecular weights (polysaccharides, polyesters, lignin) or by complex structure (proteins, lignin). This review summarizes different sources and methods for the preparation of biopolymer-based nanoparticle systems for various applications. PMID:25101259

  14. Nanoparticles from renewable polymers.

    PubMed

    Wurm, Frederik R; Weiss, Clemens K

    2014-01-01

    The use of polymers from natural resources can bring many benefits for novel polymeric nanoparticle systems. Such polymers have a variety of beneficial properties such as biodegradability and biocompatibility, they are readily available on large scale and at low cost. As the amount of fossil fuels decrease, their application becomes more interesting even if characterization is in many cases more challenging due to structural complexity, either by broad distribution of their molecular weights (polysaccharides, polyesters, lignin) or by complex structure (proteins, lignin). This review summarizes different sources and methods for the preparation of biopolymer-based nanoparticle systems for various applications.

  15. Solar abundance of iridium

    PubMed Central

    Drake, Stephen; Aller, Lawrence H.

    1976-01-01

    By a method of spectrum synthesis, which yields log gfA, where g is the statistical weight of the lower level, f is the oscillator strength, and A is the abundance, an attempt is made to deduce the solar iridium abundance from one relatively unblended, but fairly weak IrI line, λ 3220.78 Å. If the Corliss-Bozman f-value for this line is adopted, we find log A(Ir) = 0.82 on the scale log A(H) = 12.00. The discordance with the value found from carbonaceous chondrites may arise from faulty f-values or from difficulties arising from line blending in this far ultraviolet domain of the solar spectrum. PMID:16578735

  16. Synthetic Polymers from Readily Available Monosaccharides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galbis, J. A.; García-Martín, M. G.

    The low degradability of petroleum-based polymers and the massive use of these materials constitute a serious problem because of the environmental pollution that they can cause. Thus, sustained efforts have been extensively devoted to produce new polymers based on natural renewing resources and with higher degradability. Of the different natural sources, carbohydrates stand out as highly convenient raw materials because they are inexpensive, readily available, and provide great stereochemical diversity. New polymers, analogous to the more accredited technical polymers, but based on chiral monomers, have been synthesized from natural and available sugars. This chapter describes the potential of sugar-based monomers as precursors to a wide variety of macromolecular materials.

  17. Synthetic polymers from readily available monosaccharides.

    PubMed

    Galbis, J A; García-Martín, M G

    2010-01-01

    The low degradability of petroleum-based polymers and the massive use of these materials constitute a serious problem because of the environmental pollution that they can cause. Thus, sustained efforts have been extensively devoted to produce new polymers based on natural renewing resources and with higher degradability. Of the different natural sources, carbohydrates stand out as highly convenient raw materials because they are inexpensive, readily available, and provide great stereochemical diversity. New polymers, analogous to the more accredited technical polymers, but based on chiral monomers, have been synthesized from natural and available sugars. This chapter describes the potential of sugar-based monomers as precursors to a wide variety of macromolecular materials.

  18. Polymer nanolithography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vance, Jennifer M.

    Nanolithography involves making patterns of materials with at least one dimension less than 100 nanometers. Surprisingly, writable CDs can provide polymer nanostructures for pennies a piece. Building on work previously done in the Drain lab, with an inherited home-built oven press, this research will explore the relationships between polymer chemical reactivity, polymer printing, and material surface energies. In addition, a relatively inexpensive entry point into high school and undergraduate education in nanolithography is presented. The ability to pattern cheaply at the nanoscale and microscale is necessary and attractive for many technologies towards biosensors, organic light emitting diodes, identification tags, layered devices, and transistors.

  19. The Deep-Sea Natural Products, Biogenic Polyphosphate (Bio-PolyP) and Biogenic Silica (Bio-Silica), as Biomimetic Scaffolds for Bone Tissue Engineering: Fabrication of a Morphogenetically-Active Polymer

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaohong; Schröder, Heinz C.; Feng, Qingling; Draenert, Florian; Müller, Werner E. G.

    2013-01-01

    Bone defects in human, caused by fractures/nonunions or trauma, gain increasing impact and have become a medical challenge in the present-day aging population. Frequently, those fractures require surgical intervention which ideally relies on autografts or suboptimally on allografts. Therefore, it is pressing and likewise challenging to develop bone substitution materials to heal bone defects. During the differentiation of osteoblasts from their mesenchymal progenitor/stem cells and of osteoclasts from their hemopoietic precursor cells, a lineage-specific release of growth factors and a trans-lineage homeostatic cross-talk via signaling molecules take place. Hence, the major hurdle is to fabricate a template that is functioning in a way mimicking the morphogenetic, inductive role(s) of the native extracellular matrix. In the last few years, two naturally occurring polymers that are produced by deep-sea sponges, the biogenic polyphosphate (bio-polyP) and biogenic silica (bio-silica) have also been identified as promoting morphogenetic on both osteoblasts and osteoclasts. These polymers elicit cytokines that affect bone mineralization (hydroxyapatite formation). In this manner, bio-silica and bio-polyP cause an increased release of BMP-2, the key mediator activating the anabolic arm of the hydroxyapatite forming cells, and of RANKL. In addition, bio-polyP inhibits the progression of the pre-osteoclasts to functionally active osteoclasts. Based on these findings, new bioinspired strategies for the fabrication of bone biomimetic templates have been developed applying 3D-printing techniques. Finally, a strategy is outlined by which these two morphogenetically active polymers might be used to develop a novel functionally active polymer. PMID:23528950

  20. Abundance of field galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klypin, Anatoly; Karachentsev, Igor; Makarov, Dmitry; Nasonova, Olga

    2015-12-01

    We present new measurements of the abundance of galaxies with a given circular velocity in the Local Volume: a region centred on the Milky Way Galaxy and extending to distance ˜10 Mpc. The sample of ˜750 mostly dwarf galaxies provides a unique opportunity to study the abundance and properties of galaxies down to absolute magnitudes MB ≈ -10 and virial masses M_vir= 109{ M_{⊙}}. We find that the standard Λ cold dark matter (ΛCDM) model gives remarkably accurate estimates for the velocity function of galaxies with circular velocities V ≳ 70 kms-1 and corresponding virial masses M_vir≳ 5× 10^{10}{ M_{⊙}}, but it badly fails by overpredicting ˜5 times the abundance of large dwarfs with velocities V = 30-40 kms-1. The warm dark matter (WDM) models cannot explain the data either, regardless of mass of WDM particle. Just as in previous observational studies, we find a shallow asymptotic slope dN/dlog V ∝ Vα, α ≈ -1 of the velocity function, which is inconsistent with the standard ΛCDM model that predicts the slope α = -3. Though reminiscent to the known overabundance of satellite problem, the overabundance of field galaxies is a much more difficult problem. For the standard ΛCDM model to survive, in the 10 Mpc radius of the Milky Way there should be 1000 not yet detected galaxies with virial mass M_vir≈ 10^{10}{ M_{⊙}}, extremely low surface brightness and no detectable H I gas. So far none of this type of galaxies have been discovered.

  1. Design, synthesis, and optimization of nanostructured calcium phosphates (NanoCaPs) and natural polymer based 3-D non-viral gene delivery systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ko, Hsu-Feng

    Sustained delivery of therapeutic genes from a three-dimensional (3-D) scaffold and subsequent gene expression capable of triggering the regeneration of damaged tissues is a tissue engineering strategy that has been gaining increased attention. Nanostructured calcium phosphates (NanoCaPs) are biocompatible and non-toxic biomaterials. Furthermore, their efficient transfection in vitro have rendered them attractive gene delivery carriers compared to other viral- or lipid-based agents that tend to be immunogenic or cytotoxic, leading to undesirable responses when utilized above a critical threshold. However, NanoCaPs are typically characterized by variable transfection and short shelf life due to particle aggregation. A viable solution to this problem is the incorporation of NanoCaPs into 3-D scaffolds. The main objectives of this research are therefore two-fold: (1) Examination of the potential of achieving optimized transfection of NanoCaPs via anionic substitution and (2) high throughput synthesis and screening of non-viral gene delivery systems (GDS) comprised of naturally-derived polymers as scaffolds containing NanoCaPs gene carriers. Results indicated that in addition to the excellent transfection levels exhibited by NanoCaPs in vitro, an additional 20-30% increase was observed for NanoCaPs with 10-25 mol% anion substitution. In contrast, high anion substitution (>60%) yielded a drastic decline in transfection. Structural characterizations verified successful anion substitution with a noticeable increase in lattice parameters indicative of an expanded unit cell due to ionic substitution. All of the anion substituted calcium phosphates exhibited the primary phase of hydroxyapatite. For the first time, GDS composed of various concentrations of alginate (AA), fibronectin (FN), and NanoCaPs-DNA complexes were demonstrated. The presence of AA and FN was effective in immobilizing NanoCaPs and reducing the aggregation. High throughput synthesis and screening

  2. Late embryogenesis abundant proteins

    PubMed Central

    Olvera-Carrillo, Yadira; Reyes, José Luis

    2011-01-01

    Late Embryogenesis Abundant (LEA) proteins accumulate at the onset of seed desiccation and in response to water deficit in vegetative plant tissues. The typical LEA proteins are highly hydrophilic and intrinsically unstructured. They have been classified in different families, each one showing distinctive conserved motifs. In this manuscript we present and discuss some of the recent findings regarding their role in plant adaptation to water deficit, as well as those concerning to their possible function, and how it can be related to their intrinsic structural flexibility. PMID:21447997

  3. Organometallic Polymers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carraher, Charles E., Jr.

    1981-01-01

    Reactions utilized to incorporate a metal-containing moiety into a polymer chain (addition, condensation, and coordination) are considered, emphasizing that these reactions also apply to smaller molecules. (JN)

  4. Chemical abundance of comets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wyckoff, Susan; Wehinger, Peter

    1988-01-01

    Observations of NH2, (OI) and molecular ion spectra in comets represent virtually all of the volatile fraction of a comet nucleus. Their study leads to the N2, NH3, H2O, CO2, CO content of the nucleus, and thus to important constraints on models of comet formation and chemical processing in the primitive solar nebula. The observations of Comet Halley provide the opportunity for the first comprehensive determination of the abundances in a comet nucleus. The carbon isotope abundance ratio 12 C/13 C = 65 plus or minus 8 has been determined for Comet Halley from resolved rotational line structure in the CN B-X (0,0) band. The ratio is approximately 30 pct lower than the solar system value, 89, indicating either an enhancement of 13CN or a depletion of 12CN in the comet. Scenarios consistent with the observed carbon isotope ratio are: (1) formation of the comet at the periphery of the solar nebula in a fractionation-enriched 13CN region, or hidden from 12CN enrichment sources, and (2) capture of an interestellar comet. Long-slit charge coupled device (CCD) spectra obtained at the time of the spacecraft encounter of Comet Halley have also been analyzed. Scale lengths, production rates and column densities of CH, CN, C2 and NH2 were determined.

  5. Flare Plasma Iron Abundance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dennis, Brian R.; Dan, Chau; Jain, Rajmal; Schwartz, Richard A.; Tolbert, Anne K.

    2008-01-01

    The equivalent width of the iron-line complex at 6.7 keV seen in flare X-ray spectra suggests that the iron abundance of the hottest plasma at temperatures >approx.10 MK may sometimes be significantly lower than the nominal coronal abundance of four times the photospheric value that is commonly assumed. This conclusion is based on X-ray spectral observations of several flares seen in common with the Ramaty High Energy Solar Spectroscopic Imager (RHESSI) and the Solar X-ray Spectrometer (SOXS) on the second Indian geostationary satellite, GSAT-2. The implications of this will be discussed as it relates to the origin of the hot flare plasma - either plasma already in the corona that is directly heated during the flare energy release process or chromospheric plasma that is heated by flare-accelerated particles and driven up into the corona. Other possible explanations of lower-than-expected equivalent widths of the iron-line complex will also be discussed.

  6. Simulations of Polymer Translocation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vocks, H.

    2008-07-01

    Transport of molecules across membranes is an essential mechanism for life processes. These molecules are often long, and the pores in the membranes are too narrow for the molecules to pass through as a single unit. In such circumstances, the molecules have to squeeze -- i.e., translocate -- themselves through the pores. DNA, RNA and proteins are such naturally occuring long molecules in a variety of biological processes. Understandably, the process of translocation has been an active topic of current research: not only because it is a cornerstone of many biological processes, but also due to its relevance for practical applications. Translocation is a complicated process in living organisms -- the presence of chaperone molecules, pH, chemical potential gradients, and assisting molecular motors strongly influence its dynamics. Consequently, the translocation process has been empirically studied in great variety in biological literature. Study of translocation as a biophysical process is more recent. Herein, the polymer is simplified to a sequentially connected string of N monomers as it passes through a narrow pore on a membrane. The quantities of interest are the typical time scale for the polymer to leave a confining cell (the ``escape of a polymer from a vesicle'' time scale), and the typical time scale the polymer spends in the pore (the ``dwell'' time scale) as a function of N and other parameters like membrane thickness, membrane adsorption, electrochemical potential gradient, etc. Our research is focused on computer simulations of translocation. Since our main interest is in the scaling properties, we use a highly simplified description of the translocation process. The polymer is described as a self-avoiding walk on a lattice, and its dynamics consists of single-monomer jumps from one lattice site to another neighboring one. Since we have a very efficient program to simulate such polymer dynamics, which we decribe in Chapter 2, we can perform long

  7. Final Technical Report for 'Investigations of the Role of Protozoa in Transformations of Marine Biopolymers using Phaeocytis Polymer Gels as a Model'

    SciTech Connect

    Lessard, Evelyn

    2003-04-01

    protists are able to use the polymer for nutrition and growth. This is the first demonstration of the ingestion and utilization of a natural marine biopolymer by protists. We also isolated three bacterial strains from our Phaeocystis cultures. All three bacterial strains were capable of growing solely on the polymer gels produced by Phaeocystis without added inorganic nitrogen sources. We used the bacterial and protist strains to investigate degradation and alterations (size, chemical composition) of Phaeocystis polymer gels by bacteria alone and in the presence of protists. In a typical experiment, bacterial abundance in the presence of protists was reduced to one third of that in the control due to grazing, but the degradation rate was about the same. This indicates either that grazing by the protist somehow enhanced the per cell rate of bacterial degradation and/or the protist was ingesting polymer directly. Residual polymer remained after weeks, but the mean the mean diameter of the polymers were shortened considerably to ca. 200 nm. These results, along with other lines of evidence, suggest that it may be the length of polymer that limits degradation, which has important implications for the large pool of refractory DOM in the oceans. Chemical analyses indicated that the polymers are carbohydrate-rich and that the nitrogen is not proteinaceous, but most likely in the form of low molecular weight compounds such as amino sugars or sialic acid, and that they had a surprisingly low C:N ratios (<9). Extracellular polymers may therefore provide a nutritional substrate for bacteria and protists without the need for other sources of nitrogen in nature.

  8. Abundances in Sagittarius Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonifacio, P.; Zaggia, S.; Sbordone, L.; Santin, P.; Monaco, L.; Monai, S.; Molaro, P.; Marconi, G.; Girardi, L.; Ferraro, F.; di Marcantonio, P.; Caffau, E.; Bellazzini, M.

    The Sagittarius dwarf spheroidal is a very complex galaxy, which has undergone prolonged star formation. From the very first high resolution chemical analysis of Sgr stars, conducted using spectra obtained during the commissioning of UVES at VLT, it was clear that the star had undergone a high level of chemical processing, at variance with most of the other Local Group dwarf spheroidals. Thanks to FLAMES at VLT we now have accurate metallicities and abundances of alpha-chain elements for about 150 stars, which provide the first reliable metallicity distribution for this galaxy. Besides the already known high metallicity tail the existence of a metal-poor population has also been highlighted, although an assessment of the fraction of Sgr stars which belong to this population requires a larger sample. From our data it is also obvious that Sagittarius is a nucleated galaxy and that the centre of the nucleus coincides with M54, as already shown by Monaco et al.

  9. Chemical Abundances of Compact Planetary Nebulae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Ting-Hui; Shaw, Richard A.; Stanghellini, letizia; Riley, Ben

    2015-08-01

    We present preliminary results from an optical spectroscopic survey of compact planetary nebulae (PNe) in the Galactic disk. This is an ongoing optical+infrared spectral survey of 150 compact PNe to build a deep sample of PN chemical abundances. We obtained optical spectra of PNe with the Southern Astrophysical Research (SOAR) Telescope and Goodman High-Throughput Spectrograph between 2012 and 2015. These data were used to calculate the nebulae diagnostics such as electron temperature and density for each PN, and to derive the elemental abundances of He, N, O Ne, S and Ar. These abundances are vital to understanding the nature of the PNe, and their low- to intermediate-mass progenitor stars.

  10. Antimocrobial Polymer

    DOEpatents

    McDonald, William F.; Huang, Zhi-Heng; Wright, Stacy C.

    2005-09-06

    A polymeric composition having antimicrobial properties and a process for rendering the surface of a substrate antimicrobial are disclosed. The composition comprises a crosslinked chemical combination of (i) a polymer having amino group-containing side chains along a backbone forming the polymer, (ii) an antimicrobial agent selected from quaternary ammonium compounds, gentian violet compounds, substituted or unsubstituted phenols, biguanide compounds, iodine compounds, and mixtures thereof, and (iii) a crosslinking agent containing functional groups capable of reacting with the amino groups. In one embodiment, the polymer is a polyamide formed from a maleic anhydride or maleic acid ester monomer and alkylamines thereby producing a polyamide having amino substituted alkyl chains on one side of the polyamide backbone; the crosslinking agent is a phosphine having the general formula (A)3P wherein A is hydroxyalkyl; and the antimicrobial agent is chlorhexidine, dimethylchlorophenol, cetyl pyridinium chloride, gentian violet, triclosan, thymol, iodine, and mixtures thereof.

  11. Antimicrobial Polymer

    DOEpatents

    McDonald, William F.; Wright, Stacy C.; Taylor, Andrew C.

    2004-09-28

    A polymeric composition having antimicrobial properties and a process for rendering the surface of a substrate antimicrobial are disclosed. The polymeric composition comprises a crosslinked chemical combination of (i) a polymer having amino group-containing side chains along a backbone forming the polymer, (ii) an antimicrobial agent selected from metals, metal alloys, metal salts, metal complexes and mixtures thereof, and (iii) a crosslinking agent containing functional groups capable of reacting with the amino groups. In one example embodiment, the polymer is a polyamide formed from a maleic anhydride or maleic acid ester monomer and alkylamines thereby producing a polyamide having amino substituted alkyl chains on one side of the polyamide backbone; the crosslinking agent is a phosphine having the general formula (A).sub.3 P wherein A is hydroxyalkyl; and the metallic antimicrobial agent is selected from chelated silver ions, silver metal, chelated copper ions, copper metal, chelated zinc ions, zinc metal and mixtures thereof.

  12. Actinide abundances in ordinary chondrites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hagee, B.; Bernatowicz, T. J.; Podosek, F. A.; Johnson, M. L.; Burnett, D. S.

    1990-01-01

    Measurements of actinide and light REE (LREE) abundances and of phosphate abundances in equilibrated ordinary chondrites were obtained and were used to define the Pu abundance in the solar system and to determine the degree of variation of actinide and LREE abundances. The results were also used to compare directly the Pu/U ratio with the earlier obtained ratio determined indirectly, as (Pu/Nd)x(Nd/U), assuming that Pu behaves chemically as a LREE. The data, combined with high-accuracy isotope-dilution data from the literature, show that the degree of gram-scale variability of the Th, U, and LREE abundances for equilibrated ordinary chondrites is a factor of 2-3 for absolute abundances and up to 50 percent for relative abundances. The observed variations are interpreted as reflecting the differences in the compositions and/or proportions of solar nebula components accreted to ordinary chondrite parent bodies.

  13. Guar gum: Structural and electrochemical characterization of natural polymer based binder for silicon-carbon composite rechargeable Li-ion battery anodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuruba, Ramalinga; Datta, Moni Kanchan; Damodaran, Krishnan; Jampani, Prashanth H.; Gattu, Bharat; Patel, Prasad P.; Shanthi, Pavithra M.; Damle, Sameer; Kumta, Prashant N.

    2015-12-01

    Long term cyclability of a composite Li-ion anode electrode comprised of 82 wt.% Si/C lithium ion active material along with 8 wt.% polymeric binder and 10 wt.% Super P conductive carbon black has been studied utilizing polymeric binders exhibiting different elastic/tensile moduli and tensile yield strengths. Accordingly, electrochemically active Si/C composite synthesized by high energy mechanical milling (HEMM), exhibiting reversible specific capacities of ∼780 mAh/g and ∼600 mAh/g at charge/discharge rates of ∼50 mA/g and ∼200 mA/g, respectively were selected as the Li-ion active anode. Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) and purified guar gum (PGG) with reported elastic moduli ∼1000 MPa and ∼3200 MPa, respectively were selected as the binders. Results show that the composite electrode (Si/C + binder + conducting carbon) comprising the higher elastic modulus binder (PGG) exhibits better long term cyclability contrasted with PVDF. 1H-NMR analysis of the polymer before and after cycling shows structural degradation/deformation of the low elastic modulus PVDF, whereas the high elastic modulus PGG binder shows no permanent structural deformation or damage. The results presented herein thus suggest that PGG based polymers exhibiting high elastic modulus are a promising class of binders with the desired mechanical integrity needed for enduring the colossal volume expansion stresses of Si/C based composite anodes.

  14. Polymer Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frank, Curtis W.

    1979-01-01

    Described is a series of four graduate level courses in polymer science, offered or currently in preparation, at Stanford University. Course descriptions and a list of required and recommended texts are included. Detailed course outlines for two of the courses are presented. (BT)

  15. Functional polymers

    SciTech Connect

    Wegner, G.

    2000-01-01

    Improving the existing polymer materials and the designing of model polymers need fundamental insights into the structure and dynamics over a large range of length and time scales. Consequently, a host of quite different methods needs to be applied to gain insights into the molecular and supramolecular structures and interactions that determine the performance of these materials. Supramolecular structures derived from shape persistent (stiff) macromolecules are used as examples to demonstrate the correlation between chemical structure, order phenomena and performance in applications concerning advanced or developing technologies: organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs) and separator membranes in lithium based batteries and fuel cells. Polymers are also important as additives in the manufacture and the processing of other materials. The design of block copolymers to control the nucleation and growth of inorganic particles precipitating from aqueous solutions (mineralization) is discussed as well as the use of block copolymers to optimize the processing of ceramic pieces and objects. Finally, the modification of surfaces by polymers including aspects of biocompatibility is discussed. Some remarks concerning the importance of recent developments and advances in synthesis of macromolecular materials are also given.

  16. Polymer solutions

    DOEpatents

    Krawczyk, Gerhard Erich; Miller, Kevin Michael

    2011-07-26

    There is provided a method of making a polymer solution comprising polymerizing one or more monomer in a solvent, wherein said monomer comprises one or more ethylenically unsaturated monomer that is a multi-functional Michael donor, and wherein said solvent comprises 40% or more by weight, based on the weight of said solvent, one or more multi-functional Michael donor.

  17. Observing chemical abundances in comets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Delsemme, A. H.

    1981-01-01

    The atomic resonance lines of the major elements were observed in the atmospheres of a few comets, by using vacuum ultraviolet spectrographs on board rockets or orbiting observatories. Dust-to-gas ratios were also deduced for two comets through a Finson-Probstein's analysis of their dust-tail isophotes. The geometric albedo of the dust for the phase angle alpha of the observations is not accurately known but, the dust-to-gas ratio is not overly sensitive to the actual value of this albedo. Infrared observations of the dust head of some comets show that the bulk of cometary dust must be silicates, although a minor component (5-10 percent) of carbon compounds is rather likely, because of poor dielectric properties of the grains. This interpretation is confirmed by the fact that interplanetary dust probably of cometary origin, that was collected in the stratosphere by NASA-U2 Spacecraft, is chondritic in nature. Metal abundances in the head of a sungrazing comet support the chondritic hypothesis.

  18. Supramolecular polymer networks: hydrogels and bulk materials.

    PubMed

    Voorhaar, Lenny; Hoogenboom, Richard

    2016-07-21

    Supramolecular polymer networks are materials crosslinked by reversible supramolecular interactions, such as hydrogen bonding or electrostatic interactions. Supramolecular materials show very interesting and useful properties resulting from their dynamic nature, such as self-healing, stimuli-responsiveness and adaptability. Here we will discuss recent progress in polymer-based supramolecular networks for the formation of hydrogels and bulk materials. PMID:27206244

  19. A solid-state NMR method to determine domain sizes in multi-component polymer formulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlagnitweit, Judith; Tang, Mingxue; Baias, Maria; Richardson, Sara; Schantz, Staffan; Emsley, Lyndon

    2015-12-01

    Polymer domain sizes are related to many of the physical properties of polymers. Here we present a solid-state NMR experiment that is capable of measuring domain sizes in multi-component mixtures. The method combines selective excitation of carbon magnetization to isolate a specific component with proton spin diffusion to report on domain size. We demonstrate the method in the context of controlled release formulations, which represents one of today's challenges in pharmaceutical science. We show that we can measure domain sizes of interest in the different components of industrial pharmaceutical formulations at natural isotopic abundance containing various (modified) cellulose derivatives, such as microcrystalline cellulose matrixes that are film-coated with a mixture of ethyl cellulose (EC) and hydroxypropyl cellulose (HPC).

  20. Phthalocyanine polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Achar, B. N.; Fohlen, G. M.; Parker, J. A. (Inventor)

    1985-01-01

    A method of forming 4,4',4'',4''' -tetraamino phthalocyanines involves reducing 4,4',4'',4''' -tetranitro phthalocyanines, polymerizing the metal tetraamino phthalocyanines with a tetracarboxylic dianhydride (preferably aromatic) or copolymerizing with a tetracarboxylic dianhydride and a diamine (preferably also aromatic) to produce amic acids which are then dehydrocyclized to imides. Thermally and oxidatively stable polymers result which form tough, flexible films, varnishes, adhesives, and fibers.

  1. Heavy element abundances and massive star formation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Boqi; Silk, Joseph

    1993-01-01

    The determination of the stellar initial mass function (IMF) remains a great challenge in astronomy. In the solar neighborhood, the IMF is reasonable well determined for stellar masses from about 0.1 to 60 solar mass. However, outside the solar neighborhood, the IMF is poorly known. Among those frequently discussed arguments favoring a different IMF outside the solar neighborhood are the estimated time to consume the remaining gas in spiral galaxies, and the high rate of forming massive stars in starburst galaxies. An interesting question then is whether there may be an independent way of testing possible variations in the IMF. Indeed, the heavy elements in the interstellar medium are mostly synthesized in massive stars, so increasing, or decreasing, the fraction of massive stars naturally leads to a variation in the heavy element yield, and thus, the metallicity. The observed abundance should severely constrain any deviations of the IMF from the locally determined IMF. We focus on element oxygen, which is the most abundant heavy element in the interstellar medium. Oxygen is ejected only by massive stars that can become Type 1 supernovae, and the oxygen abundance is, therefore, a sensitive function of the fraction of massive stars in the IMF. Adopting oxygen enables us to avoid uncertainties in Type 1 supernovae. We use the nucleosynthesis results to calculate the oxygen yield for given IMF. We then calculate the oxygen abundance in the interstellar medium assuming instantaneous recycling of oxygen.

  2. Erratum: Interstellar Abundance Standards Revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sofia, U. J.; Meyer, D. M.

    2001-09-01

    In the Letter ``Interstellar Abundance Standards Revisited'' by U. J. Sofia and D. M. Meyer (ApJ, 554, L221 [2001]), Table 2 and its footnotes contain several typographical errors. The corrected table is shown below. We note that the solar reference standard now implies a positive abundance of nitrogen in halo dust.

  3. Periodic Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Edwin

    2013-03-01

    Periodic polymers can be made by self assembly, directed self assembly and by photolithography. Such materials provide a versatile platform for 1, 2 and 3D periodic nano-micro scale composites with either dielectric or impedance contrast or both, and these can serve for example, as photonic and or phononic crystals for electromagnetic and elastic waves as well as mechanical frames/trusses. Compared to electromagnetic waves, elastic waves are both less complex (longitudinal modes in fluids) and more complex (longitudinal, transverse in-plane and transverse out-of-plane modes in solids). Engineering of the dispersion relation between wave frequency w and wave vector, k enables the opening of band gaps in the density of modes and detailed shaping of w(k). Band gaps can be opened by Bragg scattering, anti-crossing of bands and discrete shape resonances. Current interest is in our group focuses using design - modeling, fabrication and measurement of polymer-based periodic materials for applications as tunable optics and control of phonon flow. Several examples will be described including the design of structures for multispectral band gaps for elastic waves to alter the phonon density of states, the creation of block polymer and bicontinuous metal-carbon nanoframes for structures that are robust against ballistic projectiles and quasi-crystalline solid/fluid structures that can steer shock waves.

  4. Conductive Polymers

    SciTech Connect

    Bohnert, G.W.

    2002-11-22

    Electroluminescent devices such as light-emitting diodes (LED) and high-energy density batteries. These new polymers offer cost savings, weight reduction, ease of processing, and inherent rugged design compared to conventional semiconductor materials. The photovoltaic industry has grown more than 30% during the past three years. Lightweight, flexible solar modules are being used by the U.S. Army and Marine Corps for field power units. LEDs historically used for indicator lights are now being investigated for general lighting to replace fluorescent and incandescent lights. These so-called solid-state lights are becoming more prevalent across the country since they produce efficient lighting with little heat generation. Conductive polymers are being sought for battery development as well. Considerable weight savings over conventional cathode materials used in secondary storage batteries make portable devices easier to carry and electric cars more efficient and nimble. Secondary battery sales represent an $8 billion industry annually. The purpose of the project was to synthesize and characterize conductive polymers. TRACE Photonics Inc. has researched critical issues which affect conductivity. Much of their work has focused on production of substituted poly(phenylenevinylene) compounds. These compounds exhibit greater solubility over the parent polyphenylenevinylene, making them easier to process. Alkoxy substituted groups evaluated during this study included: methoxy, propoxy, and heptyloxy. Synthesis routes for production of alkoxy-substituted poly phenylenevinylene were developed. Considerable emphasis was placed on final product yield and purity.

  5. Polymer-composite ball lightning.

    PubMed

    Bychkov, V L

    2002-01-15

    Investigations into the state of ball lightning (BL) have been made, and both theory and experiments, related to so-called "polymer-composite" ball lightning, are presented. The properties of such a polymeric BL have been described and are that of a long-lived object capable of storing high energy. Results of experiments, starting with polymeric components in erosive gas discharge experiments, are described and discussed. The model of BL as a highly charged polymer-dielectric structure is described. According to this model BL appears as the result of the aggregation of natural polymers, such as lignin and cellulose, soot, polymeric silica and other natural dust particles. Its ability to glow is explained by the appearance over its perimeter of gas discharges near the highly charged BL surface, and electrical breakdown of some regions on the surface, consisting of polymerized and aggregated threads.

  6. Polymer-composite ball lightning.

    PubMed

    Bychkov, V L

    2002-01-15

    Investigations into the state of ball lightning (BL) have been made, and both theory and experiments, related to so-called "polymer-composite" ball lightning, are presented. The properties of such a polymeric BL have been described and are that of a long-lived object capable of storing high energy. Results of experiments, starting with polymeric components in erosive gas discharge experiments, are described and discussed. The model of BL as a highly charged polymer-dielectric structure is described. According to this model BL appears as the result of the aggregation of natural polymers, such as lignin and cellulose, soot, polymeric silica and other natural dust particles. Its ability to glow is explained by the appearance over its perimeter of gas discharges near the highly charged BL surface, and electrical breakdown of some regions on the surface, consisting of polymerized and aggregated threads. PMID:16210170

  7. The role of water on the structure and mechanical properties of a thermoplastic natural block co-polymer from squid sucker ring teeth.

    PubMed

    Rieu, Clément; Bertinetti, Luca; Schuetz, Roman; Salinas-Zavala, Cesar Ca; Weaver, James C; Fratzl, Peter; Miserez, Ali; Masic, Admir

    2016-01-01

    Hard biological polymers exhibiting a truly thermoplastic behavior that can maintain their structural properties after processing are extremely rare and highly desirable for use in advanced technological applications such as 3D-printing, biodegradable plastics and robust composites. One exception are the thermoplastic proteins that comprise the sucker ring teeth (SRT) of the Humboldt jumbo squid (Dosidicus gigas). In this work, we explore the mechanical properties of reconstituted SRT proteins and demonstrate that the material can be re-shaped by simple processing in water and at relatively low temperature (below 100 °C). The post-processed material maintains a high modulus in the GPa range, both in the dry and the wet states. When transitioning from low to high humidity, the material properties change from brittle to ductile with an increase in plastic deformation, where water acts as a plasticizer. Using synchrotron x-ray scattering tools, we found that water mostly influences nano scale structure, whereas at the molecular level, the protein structure remains largely unaffected. Furthermore, through simultaneous in situ x-ray scattering and mechanical tests, we show that the supramolecular network of the reconstituted SRT material exhibits a progressive alignment along the strain direction, which is attributed to chain alignment of the amorphous domains of SRT proteins. The high modulus in both dry and wet states, combined with their efficient thermal processing characteristics, make the SRT proteins promising substitutes for applications traditionally reserved for petroleum-based thermoplastics. PMID:27588938

  8. The role of water on the structure and mechanical properties of a thermoplastic natural block co-polymer from squid sucker ring teeth.

    PubMed

    Rieu, Clément; Bertinetti, Luca; Schuetz, Roman; Salinas-Zavala, Cesar Ca; Weaver, James C; Fratzl, Peter; Miserez, Ali; Masic, Admir

    2016-09-02

    Hard biological polymers exhibiting a truly thermoplastic behavior that can maintain their structural properties after processing are extremely rare and highly desirable for use in advanced technological applications such as 3D-printing, biodegradable plastics and robust composites. One exception are the thermoplastic proteins that comprise the sucker ring teeth (SRT) of the Humboldt jumbo squid (Dosidicus gigas). In this work, we explore the mechanical properties of reconstituted SRT proteins and demonstrate that the material can be re-shaped by simple processing in water and at relatively low temperature (below 100 °C). The post-processed material maintains a high modulus in the GPa range, both in the dry and the wet states. When transitioning from low to high humidity, the material properties change from brittle to ductile with an increase in plastic deformation, where water acts as a plasticizer. Using synchrotron x-ray scattering tools, we found that water mostly influences nano scale structure, whereas at the molecular level, the protein structure remains largely unaffected. Furthermore, through simultaneous in situ x-ray scattering and mechanical tests, we show that the supramolecular network of the reconstituted SRT material exhibits a progressive alignment along the strain direction, which is attributed to chain alignment of the amorphous domains of SRT proteins. The high modulus in both dry and wet states, combined with their efficient thermal processing characteristics, make the SRT proteins promising substitutes for applications traditionally reserved for petroleum-based thermoplastics.

  9. AFM Imaging Reveals Topographic Diversity of Wild Type and Z Variant Polymers of Human α1-Proteinase Inhibitor

    PubMed Central

    Gaczynska, Maria; Karpowicz, Przemyslaw; Stuart, Christine E.; Norton, Malgorzata G.; Teckman, Jeffrey H.; Marszal, Ewa; Osmulski, Pawel A.

    2016-01-01

    α1-Proteinase inhibitor (antitrypsin) is a canonical example of the serpin family member that binds and inhibits serine proteases. The natural metastability of serpins is crucial to carry out structural rearrangements necessary for biological activity. However, the enhanced metastability of the mutant Z variant of antitrypsin, in addition to folding defect, may substantially contribute to its polymerization, a process leading to incurable serpinopathy. The metastability also impedes structural studies on the polymers. There are no crystal structures of Z monomer or any kind of polymers larger than engineered wild type (WT) trimer. Our understanding of polymerization mechanisms is based on biochemical data using in vitro generated WT oligomers and molecular simulations. Here we applied atomic force microscopy (AFM) to compare topography of monomers, in vitro formed WT oligomers, and Z type polymers isolated from transgenic mouse liver. We found the AFM images of monomers closely resembled an antitrypsin outer shell modeled after the crystal structure. We confirmed that the Z variant demonstrated higher spontaneous propensity to dimerize than WT monomers. We also detected an unexpectedly broad range of different types of polymers with periodicity and topography depending on the applied method of polymerization. Short linear oligomers of unit arrangement similar to the Z polymers were especially abundant in heat-treated WT preparations. Long linear polymers were a prominent and unique component of liver extracts. However, the liver preparations contained also multiple types of oligomers of topographies undistinguishable from those found in WT samples polymerized with heat, low pH or guanidine hydrochloride treatments. In conclusion, we established that AFM is an excellent technique to assess morphological diversity of antitrypsin polymers, which is important for etiology of serpinopathies. These data also support previous, but controversial models of in vivo

  10. AFM Imaging Reveals Topographic Diversity of Wild Type and Z Variant Polymers of Human α1-Proteinase Inhibitor

    DOE PAGES

    Gaczynska, Maria; Karpowicz, Przemyslaw; Stuart, Christine E.; Norton, Malgorzata G.; Teckman, Jeffrey H.; Marszal, Ewa; Osmulski, Pawel A.

    2016-03-23

    α1-Proteinase inhibitor (antitrypsin) is a canonical example of the serpin family member that binds and inhibits serine proteases. The natural metastability of serpins is crucial to carry out structural rearrangements necessary for biological activity. However, the enhanced metastability of the mutant Z variant of antitrypsin, in addition to folding defect, may substantially contribute to its polymerization, a process leading to incurable serpinopathy. The metastability also impedes structural studies on the polymers. There are no crystal structures of Z monomer or any kind of polymers larger than engineered wild type (WT) trimer. Our understanding of polymerization mechanisms is based on biochemicalmore » data using in vitro generated WT oligomers and molecular simulations. Here we applied atomic force microscopy (AFM) to compare topography of monomers, in vitro formed WT oligomers, and Z type polymers isolated from transgenic mouse liver. We found the AFM images of monomers closely resembled an antitrypsin outer shell modeled after the crystal structure. We confirmed that the Z variant demonstrated higher spontaneous propensity to dimerize than WT monomers. We also detected an unexpectedly broad range of different types of polymers with periodicity and topography depending on the applied method of polymerization. Short linear oligomers of unit arrangement similar to the Z polymers were especially abundant in heat-treated WT preparations. Long linear polymers were a prominent and unique component of liver extracts. However, the liver preparations contained also multiple types of oligomers of topographies undistinguishable from those found inWT samples polymerized with heat, low pH or guanidine hydrochloride treatments. In conclusion, we established that AFM is an excellent technique to assess morphological diversity of antitrypsin polymers, which is important for etiology of serpinopathies. These data also support previous, but controversial models of in vivo

  11. Nucleosynthesis: Stellar and Solar Abundances and Atomic Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cowan, John J.; Lawler, James E.; Sneden, Christopher; DenHartog, E. A.; Collier, Jason; Dodge, Homer L.

    2006-01-01

    Abundance observations indicate the presence of often surprisingly large amounts of neutron capture (i.e., s- and r-process) elements in old Galactic halo and globular cluster stars. These observations provide insight into the nature of the earliest generations of stars in the Galaxy the progenitors of the halo stars responsible for neutron-capture synthesis. Comparisons of abundance trends can be used to understand the chemical evolution of the Galaxy and the nature of heavy element nucleosynthesis. In addition age determinations, based upon long-lived radioactive nuclei abundances, can now be obtained. These stellar abundance determinations depend critically upon atomic data. Improved laboratory transition probabilities have been recently obtained for a number of elements. These new gf values have been used to greatly refine the abundances of neutron-capture elemental abundances in the solar photosphere and in very metal-poor Galactic halo stars. The newly determined stellar abundances are surprisingly consistent with a (relative) Solar System r-process pattern, and are also consistent with abundance predictions expected from such neutron-capture nucleosynthesis.

  12. Polymer Electronics: Power from Polymers

    SciTech Connect

    Venkataraman, D.; Russell, Thomas P.

    2012-06-19

    We review polymer-based electronics and photovoltaics to provide the reader with a sense of how the field has developed, where we stand at present, and what possibilities are looming in the future. Expertise in areas ranging from synthesis to morphology to device design was sought to achieve this end. While these reviews cannot be exhaustive, they do provide a snapshot of the field at present and give some sense of where the key impediments are.

  13. Catalysts from synthetic genetic polymers.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Alexander I; Pinheiro, Vitor B; Smola, Matthew J; Morgunov, Alexey S; Peak-Chew, Sew; Cozens, Christopher; Weeks, Kevin M; Herdewijn, Piet; Holliger, Philipp

    2015-02-19

    The emergence of catalysis in early genetic polymers such as RNA is considered a key transition in the origin of life, pre-dating the appearance of protein enzymes. DNA also demonstrates the capacity to fold into three-dimensional structures and form catalysts in vitro. However, to what degree these natural biopolymers comprise functionally privileged chemical scaffolds for folding or the evolution of catalysis is not known. The ability of synthetic genetic polymers (XNAs) with alternative backbone chemistries not found in nature to fold into defined structures and bind ligands raises the possibility that these too might be capable of forming catalysts (XNAzymes). Here we report the discovery of such XNAzymes, elaborated in four different chemistries (arabino nucleic acids, ANA; 2'-fluoroarabino nucleic acids, FANA; hexitol nucleic acids, HNA; and cyclohexene nucleic acids, CeNA) directly from random XNA oligomer pools, exhibiting in trans RNA endonuclease and ligase activities. We also describe an XNA-XNA ligase metalloenzyme in the FANA framework, establishing catalysis in an entirely synthetic system and enabling the synthesis of FANA oligomers and an active RNA endonuclease FANAzyme from its constituent parts. These results extend catalysis beyond biopolymers and establish technologies for the discovery of catalysts in a wide range of polymer scaffolds not found in nature. Evolution of catalysis independent of any natural polymer has implications for the definition of chemical boundary conditions for the emergence of life on Earth and elsewhere in the Universe.

  14. Catalysts from synthetic genetic polymers

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Alexander I.; Pinheiro, Vitor B.; Smola, Matthew J.; Morgunov, Alexey S.; Peak-Chew, Sew; Cozens, Christopher; Weeks, Kevin M.; Herdewijn, Piet; Holliger, Philipp

    2014-01-01

    The emergence of catalysis in early genetic polymers like RNA is considered a key transition in the origin of life1, predating the appearance of protein enzymes. DNA also demonstrates the capacity to fold into three-dimensional structures and form catalysts in vitro2. However, to what degree these natural biopolymers comprise functionally privileged chemical scaffolds3 for folding or the evolution of catalysis is not known. The ability of synthetic genetic polymers (XNAs) with alternative backbone chemistries not found in nature to fold into defined structures and bind ligands4 raises the possibility that these too might be capable of forming catalysts (XNAzymes). Here we report the discovery of such XNAzymes, elaborated in four different chemistries (ANA (arabino nucleic acids)5, FANA (2′-fluoroarabino nucleic acids)6, HNA (hexitol nucleic acids) and CeNA (cyclohexene nucleic acids)7 directly from random XNA oligomer pools, exhibiting in trans RNA endonuclease and ligase activities. We also describe an XNA-XNA ligase metalloenzyme in the FANA framework, establishing catalysis in an entirely synthetic system and enabling the synthesis of FANA oligomers and an active RNA endonuclease FANAzyme from its constituent parts. These results extend catalysis beyond biopolymers and establish technologies for the discovery of catalysts in a wide range of polymer scaffolds not found in nature8. Evolution of catalysis independent of any natural polymer has implications for the definition of chemical boundary conditions for the emergence of life on earth and elsewhere in the universe9. PMID:25470036

  15. Clinical performance of a dermal filler containing natural glycolic Acid and a polylactic Acid polymer: results of a clinical trial in human immunodeficiency virus subjects with facial lipoatrophy.

    PubMed

    Tagle, Jorge M; Macchetto, Pedro Cervantes; Durán Páramo, Rosa Margarita

    2010-02-01

    Lipoatrophy is a condition that affects certain individuals, most commonly those who are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus.(1-3) Injectable fillers are used for the treatment of these dermal contour deformities to smooth dermal depressions formed by the loss of volume. These dermal fillers (also known as soft tissue augmentation devices) can correct contour deformities caused by lipoatrophy in patients who are human immunodeficiency virus positive or negative. The product used in this study is a patented, second-generation, injectable, dermal collagen stimulator that combines glycolic acid and polylactic acid. The glycolic acid used is not a polymer, but rather an acid derived from sugar cane. Its chemical structure corresponds to that of an alpha-hydroxy acid. Glycolic acid is a well-characterized agent that is present in a number of cosmetic products. Polylactic acid is a synthetic, biocompatible, biodegradable, inert, synthetic polymer from the poly a-hydroxy-acid family that is believed to stimulate fibroblasts to produce more collagen, thus increasing facial volume. Together, polylactic acid and glycolic acid act in concert to 1) stimulate collagen production and 2) hydrate the outer layers of the skin. A multicenter, clinical investigation authorized by the Mexican Secretariat of Health was conducted between September 20, 2002, and September 19, 2004. This clinical study was conducted in male patients between 32 and 60 years of age with lipoatrophy as a result of highly active antiretroviral therapy for human immunodeficiency virus infection. The study objective was to measure the improvement of contour deformities after the injection of a dermal collagen stimulator containing glycolic acid and polylactic acid. In addition to safety, this dermal filler was assessed when used to correct volume deformities caused by lipoatrophy in subjects who are human immunodeficiency virus positive. Thirty male subjects participated and were treated as follows

  16. Synthetic biodegradable functional polymers for tissue engineering: a brief review

    PubMed Central

    BaoLin, GUO; MA, Peter X.

    2015-01-01

    Scaffolds play a crucial role in tissue engineering. Biodegradable polymers with great processing flexibility are the predominant scaffolding materials. Synthetic biodegradable polymers with well-defined structure and without immunological concerns associated with naturally derived polymers are widely used in tissue engineering. The synthetic biodegradable polymers that are widely used in tissue engineering, including polyesters, polyanhydrides, polyphosphazenes, polyurethane, and poly (glycerol sebacate) are summarized in this article. New developments in conducting polymers, photoresponsive polymers, amino-acid-based polymers, enzymatically degradable polymers, and peptide-activated polymers are also discussed. In addition to chemical functionalization, the scaffold designs that mimic the nano and micro features of the extracellular matrix (ECM) are presented as well, and composite and nanocomposite scaffolds are also reviewed. PMID:25729390

  17. Non-Additive Effects of Genotypic Diversity Increase Floral Abundance and Abundance of Floral Visitors

    PubMed Central

    Genung, Mark A.; Lessard, Jean-Philippe; Brown, Claire B.; Bunn, Windy A.; Cregger, Melissa A.; Reynolds, Wm. Nicholas; Felker-Quinn, Emmi; Stevenson, Mary L.; Hartley, Amanda S.; Crutsinger, Gregory M.; Schweitzer, Jennifer A.; Bailey, Joseph K.

    2010-01-01

    Background In the emerging field of community and ecosystem genetics, genetic variation and diversity in dominant plant species have been shown to play fundamental roles in maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function. However, the importance of intraspecific genetic variation and diversity to floral abundance and pollinator visitation has received little attention. Methodology/Principal Findings Using an experimental common garden that manipulated genotypic diversity (the number of distinct genotypes per plot) of Solidago altissima, we document that genotypic diversity of a dominant plant can indirectly influence flower visitor abundance. Across two years, we found that 1) plant genotype explained 45% and 92% of the variation in flower visitor abundance in 2007 and 2008, respectively; and 2) plant genotypic diversity had a positive and non-additive effect on floral abundance and the abundance of flower visitors, as plots established with multiple genotypes produced 25% more flowers and received 45% more flower visits than would be expected under an additive model. Conclusions/Significance These results provide evidence that declines in genotypic diversity may be an important but little considered factor for understanding plant-pollinator dynamics, with implications for the global decline in pollinators due to reduced plant diversity in both agricultural and natural ecosystems. PMID:20090850

  18. Mineral Abundance Near Aristarchus Crater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradford, Alison; Storrs, A.

    2007-12-01

    Mineral Abundance Near Aristarchus Crater Alison Bradford and Alex Storrs Towson University We analyze Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images to determine the abundance of minerals near Aristarchus crater. Following the calibration of Robinson et al. (2007) we present ratio maps of images obtained in August of 2005 showing the abundance of TiO2 and other minerals in this interesting area in the middle of Oceanus Procellarum. A prominent cleft (Schroter's Valley, presumably a collapsed lava tube) makes this region of special interest for analyzing the formation of mare basalts. Reference: Robinson, M.S., et al. (2007): "High resolution mapping of TiO2 abundances on the Moon using the Hubble Space Telescope", GRL 34, L13203

  19. The boron abundance of Procyon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lemke, Michael; Lambert, David L.; Edvardsson, Bengt

    1993-01-01

    The B I 2496.8 A resonance line and HST/GHRS echelle spectra are used with model atmospheres and synthetic spectra to derive the B abundance of the F dwarfs Procyon (Alpha Canis Minoris), Theta Ursae Majoris, and Iota Pegasi. The B abundance of Theta UMa and Iota Peg is similar to that derived by Boesgaard and Heacox (1978) from the B II resonance line in spectra of A- and B-type stars. These two dwarfs show normal abundances of Li, Be, and B. Procyon, which is highly depleted in Li and Be, is depleted in B by a factor of at least 3. Comparison of the spectra of Procyon and the halo dwarf HD 140283 shows that the B abundance assigned by Duncan et al. (1992) to three halo dwarfs is not greatly overestimated as a result of contamination of the B I line by an unidentified line.

  20. MIT jar test of the natural polymer chitosan with fresh pond water from the Cambridge Water Department, November-December 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Murcott, S.; Harleman, D.R.F.

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of the MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) jar tests of chitosan using CWD (Cambridge Water Department Treatment Plant) water was to demonstrate the effectiveness of chitosan as a coagulant in drinking water applications. The approach was to compare the performance of the natural organic coagulant, chitosan, to the performance of alum and other chemical coagulants in terms of the parameters turbidity, color, pH and alkalinity. Twenty-five jar tests were conducted during November and December, 1992, at Parsons Laboratory, MIT, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

  1. Interpretations of Polymer-Polymer Miscibility.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olabisi, Olagoke

    1981-01-01

    Discusses various aspects of polymeric mixtures, mixtures of structurally different homopolymers, copolymers, terpolymers, and the like. Defines concepts of polymer-polymer miscibility from practical and theoretical viewpoints, and ways of predicting such miscibility. (JN)

  2. Literature survey of isotopic abundance data for 1987-1989

    SciTech Connect

    Holden, N.E. )

    1989-08-09

    I have compiled all of the data on isotopic abundance measurements and their variation in nature for the time period since the last General Assembly. Most of the data deals with the variations in the abundances as given by per mil deviations from some standard. As such, they are not of major interest to the Atomic Weights Commission. However, there were some measurements which are of general interest in this list.

  3. Polymer/mesoporous metal oxide composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ver Meer, Melissa Ann

    Understanding the nature of the interfacial region between an organic polymer matrix and an inorganic filler component is essential in determining how this region impacts the overall bulk properties of the organic/inorganic hybrid composite material. In this work, polystyrene was used as the model polymer matrix coupled with silica-based filler materials to investigate the nature of structure-property relationships in polymer composites. Initial work was conducted on synthesis and characterization of colloidal and mesoporous silica particles melt blended into the polystyrene matrix. Modification of the interface was accomplished by chemically bonding the silica particles with the polystyrene chains through polymerization from the particle surface via atom transfer radical polymerization. High molecular weight polystyrene chains were formed and bulk test samples were evaluated with increased thermal stability of the grafted polymer composite system versus equivalent melt blended polymer composites. Polymer grafting was also conducted from the internal pores of mesoporous silica, further improving the thermal stability of the composite system without degrading dynamic mechanical properties. Characterization of the polymer composites was conducted with gel permeation chromatography, transmission electron microscopy, thermogravimetric analysis and dynamic mechanical analysis. It was also discovered during the polystyrene-silica composite studies that amorphous polystyrene can possess a less mobile phase, evident in a second peak of the loss tangent (tan delta). The long annealing times necessitated by the mesoporous silica composites were replicated in as received polystyrene. This new, less mobile phase is of particular interest in determining the mobility of polymer chains in the interfacial region.

  4. How selection structures species abundance distributions

    PubMed Central

    Magurran, Anne E.; Henderson, Peter A.

    2012-01-01

    How do species divide resources to produce the characteristic species abundance distributions seen in nature? One way to resolve this problem is to examine how the biomass (or capacity) of the spatial guilds that combine to produce an abundance distribution is allocated among species. Here we argue that selection on body size varies across guilds occupying spatially distinct habitats. Using an exceptionally well-characterized estuarine fish community, we show that biomass is concentrated in large bodied species in guilds where habitat structure provides protection from predators, but not in those guilds associated with open habitats and where safety in numbers is a mechanism for reducing predation risk. We further demonstrate that while there is temporal turnover in the abundances and identities of species that comprise these guilds, guild rank order is conserved across our 30-year time series. These results demonstrate that ecological communities are not randomly assembled but can be decomposed into guilds where capacity is predictably allocated among species. PMID:22787020

  5. Climatic effects on mosquito abundance in Mediterranean wetlands

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The impact of climate change on vector-borne diseases is highly controversial. One of the principal points of debate is whether or not climate influences mosquito abundance, a key factor in disease transmission. Methods To test this hypothesis, we analysed ten years of data (2003–2012) from biweekly surveys to assess inter-annual and seasonal relationships between the abundance of seven mosquito species known to be pathogen vectors (West Nile virus, Usutu virus, dirofilariasis and Plasmodium sp.) and several climatic variables in two wetlands in SW Spain. Results Within-season abundance patterns were related to climatic variables (i.e. temperature, rainfall, tide heights, relative humidity and photoperiod) that varied according to the mosquito species in question. Rainfall during winter months was positively related to Culex pipiens and Ochlerotatus detritus annual abundances. Annual maximum temperatures were non-linearly related to annual Cx. pipiens abundance, while annual mean temperatures were positively related to annual Ochlerotatus caspius abundance. Finally, we modelled shifts in mosquito abundances using the A2 and B2 temperature and rainfall climate change scenarios for the period 2011–2100. While Oc. caspius, an important anthropophilic species, may increase in abundance, no changes are expected for Cx. pipiens or the salt-marsh mosquito Oc. detritus. Conclusions Our results highlight that the effects of climate are species-specific, place-specific and non-linear and that linear approaches will therefore overestimate the effect of climate change on mosquito abundances at high temperatures. Climate warming does not necessarily lead to an increase in mosquito abundance in natural Mediterranean wetlands and will affect, above all, species such as Oc. caspius whose numbers are not closely linked to rainfall and are influenced, rather, by local tidal patterns and temperatures. The final impact of changes in vector abundance on disease frequency

  6. Biomedical Applications of Biodegradable Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Ulery, Bret D.; Nair, Lakshmi S.; Laurencin, Cato T.

    2011-01-01

    Utilization of polymers as biomaterials has greatly impacted the advancement of modern medicine. Specifically, polymeric biomaterials that are biodegradable provide the significant advantage of being able to be broken down and removed after they have served their function. Applications are wide ranging with degradable polymers being used clinically as surgical sutures and implants. In order to fit functional demand, materials with desired physical, chemical, biological, biomechanical and degradation properties must be selected. Fortunately, a wide range of natural and synthetic degradable polymers has been investigated for biomedical applications with novel materials constantly being developed to meet new challenges. This review summarizes the most recent advances in the field over the past 4 years, specifically highlighting new and interesting discoveries in tissue engineering and drug delivery applications. PMID:21769165

  7. Polymer Matrix Composites: A Perspective for a Special Issue of Polymer Reviews

    SciTech Connect

    Kessler, Michael R.

    2012-09-04

    Polymer matrix composites, with their high specific strength and stiffness, are used in a wide range of applications from large wind turbine blades to microelectronics. This perspective article provides a brief primer on polymer matrix composites, discusses some of their advantages and limitations, and describes a number of emerging trends in the field. In addition, it introduces four review articles on the topics of recent developments in carbon fibers, natural fiber reinforced composites, evaluation of the interface between the fiber reinforcement and polymer matrix, and carbon nanotube reinforced polymers.

  8. ABUNDANCES OF GALACTIC ANTICENTER PLANETARY NEBULAE AND THE OXYGEN ABUNDANCE GRADIENT IN THE GALACTIC DISK

    SciTech Connect

    Henry, R. B. C.; Morrison, Michael A.; Kwitter, Karen B.; Jaskot, Anne E.; Balick, Bruce; Milingo, Jacquelynne B. E-mail: morrison@nhn.ou.ed E-mail: ajaskot@umich.ed E-mail: jmilingo@gettysburg.ed

    2010-11-20

    We have obtained spectrophotometric observations of 41 anticenter planetary nebulae (PNe) located in the disk of the Milky Way. Electron temperatures and densities, as well as chemical abundances for He, N, O, Ne, S, Cl, and Ar were determined. Incorporating these results into our existing database of PN abundances yielded a sample of 124 well-observed objects with homogeneously determined abundances extending from 0.9 to 21 kpc in galactocentric distance. We performed a detailed regression analysis which accounted for uncertainties in both oxygen abundances and radial distances in order to establish the metallicity gradient across the disk to be 12 + log(O/H) = (9.09 {+-} 0.05) - (0.058 {+-} 0.006) x R{sub g} , with R{sub g} in kpc. While we see some evidence that the gradient steepens at large galactocentric distances, more objects toward the anticenter need to be observed in order to confidently establish the true form of the metallicity gradient. We find no compelling evidence that the gradient differs between Peimbert Types I and II, nor is oxygen abundance related to the vertical distance from the galactic plane. Our gradient agrees well with analogous results for H II regions but is steeper than the one recently published by Stanghellini and Haywood over a similar range in galactocentric distance. A second analysis using PN distances from a different source implied a flatter gradient, and we suggest that we have reached a confusion limit which can only be resolved with greatly improved distance measurements and an understanding of the natural scatter in oxygen abundances.

  9. From Commodity Polymers to Functional Polymers

    PubMed Central

    Xiang, Tao; Wang, Ling-Ren; Ma, Lang; Han, Zhi-Yuan; Wang, Rui; Cheng, Chong; Xia, Yi; Qin, Hui; Zhao, Chang-Sheng

    2014-01-01

    Functional polymers bear specified chemical groups, and have specified physical, chemical, biological, pharmacological, or other uses. To adjust the properties while keeping material usage low, a method for direct synthesis of functional polymers is indispensable. Here we show that various functional polymers can be synthesized by in situ cross-linked polymerization/copolymerization. We demonstrate that the polymers synthesized by the facile method using different functional monomers own outstanding pH-sensitivity and pH-reversibility, antifouling property, antibacterial, and anticoagulant property. Our study opens a route for the functionalization of commodity polymers, which lead to important advances in polymeric materials applications. PMID:24710333

  10. From Commodity Polymers to Functional Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xiang, Tao; Wang, Ling-Ren; Ma, Lang; Han, Zhi-Yuan; Wang, Rui; Cheng, Chong; Xia, Yi; Qin, Hui; Zhao, Chang-Sheng

    2014-04-01

    Functional polymers bear specified chemical groups, and have specified physical, chemical, biological, pharmacological, or other uses. To adjust the properties while keeping material usage low, a method for direct synthesis of functional polymers is indispensable. Here we show that various functional polymers can be synthesized by in situ cross-linked polymerization/copolymerization. We demonstrate that the polymers synthesized by the facile method using different functional monomers own outstanding pH-sensitivity and pH-reversibility, antifouling property, antibacterial, and anticoagulant property. Our study opens a route for the functionalization of commodity polymers, which lead to important advances in polymeric materials applications.

  11. Colloidal stability of CeO2 nanoparticles coated with either natural organic matter or organic polymers under various hydrochemical conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dippon, Urs; Pabst, Silke; Klitzke, Sondra

    2016-04-01

    The worldwide marked for engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) is growing and concerns on the environmental fate- and toxicity of ENPs are rising. Understanding the transport of ENPs within and between environmental compartments such as surface water and groundwater is crucial for exposition modeling, risk assessment and ultimately the protection of drinking water resources. The transport of ENPs is strongly influenced by the surface properties and aggregation behavior of the particles, which is strongly controlled by synthetic and natural organic coatings. Both, surface properties and aggregation characteristics are also key properties for the industrial application of ENPs, which leads to the development and commercialization of an increasing number of surface-functionalized ENPs. These include metals and oxides such as Cerium dioxide (CeO2) with various organic coatings. Therefore, we investigate CeO2 ENPs with different surface coatings such as weakly anionic polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) or strongly anionic poly acrylic acid (PAA) with respect to their colloidal stability in aqueous matrix under various hydrochemical conditions (pH, ionic strength) and their transport behavior in sand filter columns. Furthermore, we investigate the interaction of naturally occurring organic matter (NOM) with CeO2 ENPs and its effect on surface charge (zeta potential), colloidal stability and transport. While uncoated CeO2 ENPs aggregate at pH > 4 in aqueous matrix, our results show that PAA and PVA surface coatings as well as NOM sorbed to CeO2-NP surfaces can stabilize CeO2 ENPs under neutral and alkaline pH conditions in 1 mM KCl solution. Under slightly acidic conditions, differences between the three particle types were observed. PVA can stabilize particle suspensions in presence of 1 mM KCl at pH > 4.3, PAA at pH >4.0 and NOM at >3.2. While the presence of KCl did not influence particle size of NOM-CeO2 ENPs, CaCl2 at >2 mM lead to aggregation. Further results on the influence of KCl

  12. Nitrogen abundance in Comet Halley

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wyckoff, Susan; Tegler, Stephen C.; Engel, Lisa

    1991-01-01

    Data on the nitrogen-containing compounds that observed spectroscopically in the coma of Comet Halley are summarized, and the elemental abundance of nitrogen in the Comet Halley nucleus is derived. It is found that 90 percent of elemental nitrogen is in the dust fraction of the coma, while in the gas fraction, most of the nitrogen is contained in NH3 and CN. The elemental nitrogen abundance in the ice component of the nucleus was found to be deficient by a factor of about 75, relative to the solar photosphere, indicating that the chemical partitioning of N2 into NH3 and other nitrogen compounds during the evolution of the solar nebula cannot account completely for the low abundance ratio N2/NH3 = 0.1, observed in the comet. It is suggested that the low N2/NH3 ratio in Comet Halley may be explained simply by physical fractionation and/or thermal diffusion.

  13. Solar and stellar photospheric abundances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allende Prieto, Carlos

    2016-07-01

    The determination of photospheric abundances in late-type stars from spectroscopic observations is a well-established field, built on solid theoretical foundations. Improving those foundations to refine the accuracy of the inferred abundances has proven challenging, but progress has been made. In parallel, developments on instrumentation, chiefly regarding multi-object spectroscopy, have been spectacular, and a number of projects are collecting large numbers of observations for stars across the Milky Way and nearby galaxies, promising important advances in our understanding of galaxy formation and evolution. After providing a brief description of the basic physics and input data involved in the analysis of stellar spectra, a review is made of the analysis steps, and the available tools to cope with large observational efforts. The paper closes with a quick overview of relevant ongoing and planned spectroscopic surveys, and highlights of recent research on photospheric abundances.

  14. Coronal Abundances and Their Variation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saba, Julia L. R.

    1996-01-01

    This contract supported the investigation of elemental abundances in the solar corona, principally through analysis of high-resolution soft X-ray spectra from the Flat Crystal Spectrometer on NASA's Solar Maximum Mission. The goals of the study were a characterization of the mean values of relative abundances of elements accessible in the FCS data, and information on the extent and circumstances of their variability. This is the Final Report, summarizing the data analysis and reporting activities which occurred during the period of performance, June 1993 - December 1996.

  15. Chemical Abundances of Symbiotic Giants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gałan, C.; Mikołajewska, J.; Hinkle, K. H.; Joyce, R. R.

    2015-12-01

    High resolution (R ˜ 50000), near-IR spectra were used to measure photospheric abundances of CNO and elements around the iron peak for 24 symbiotic giants. Spectrum synthesis was employed using local thermal equilibrium and hydrostatic model atmospheres. The metallicities are distributed in a wide range with maximum around [Fe/H] ˜-0.4 - - 0.3 dex. Enrichment in 14N indicates that all the sample giants have experienced the first dredge-up. The relative abundance of [Ti/Fe] is generally large in red symbiotic systems.

  16. Coronal abundances and their variation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saba, Julia L. R.

    1994-01-01

    This contract supports the investigation of elemental abundances in the solar corona, principally through analysis of high-resolution soft x-ray spectra from the Flat Crystal Spectrometer (FCS) on the Solar Maximum Mission. The goals of the study are a characterization of the mean values of relative abundances of elements accessible in the FCS data, and information on the extent and circumstances of their variability. This report is a summation of the data analysis and reporting activities which occurred during the first ten months of the contract, 15 Jun. 1993 to 15 Apr. 1994.

  17. The solar abundance of beryllium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, J. E.; Aller, L. H.

    1974-01-01

    The solar abundance of beryllium is deduced from high-resolution Kitt Peak observations of the 3130.43- and 3131.08-A lines of Be II interpreted by the method of spectrum synthesis. The results are in good agreement with those previously obtained by Grevesse (1968) and by Hauge and Engvold (1968) and indicate that in the photospheric layers, beryllium is depleted below the chondritic value by a factor of about two. It is found that the beryllium abundance is equal to logN(Be)/N(H) + 12 = 1.08 plus or minus 0.05.

  18. SOLAR MODELS WITH REVISED ABUNDANCE

    SciTech Connect

    Bi, S. L.; Li, T. D.; Yang, W. M.; Li, L. H.

    2011-04-20

    We present new solar models in which we use the latest low abundances and further include the effects of rotation, magnetic fields, and extra-mixing processes. We assume that the extra-element mixing can be treated as a diffusion process, with the diffusion coefficient depending mainly on the solar internal configuration of rotation and magnetic fields. We find that such models can well reproduce the observed solar rotation profile in the radiative region. Furthermore, the proposed models can match the seismic constraints better than the standard solar models, also when these include the latest abundances, but neglect the effects of rotation and magnetic fields.

  19. Shape memory polymers

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, Thomas S.; Bearinger, Jane P.

    2015-06-09

    New shape memory polymer compositions, methods for synthesizing new shape memory polymers, and apparatus comprising an actuator and a shape memory polymer wherein the shape memory polymer comprises at least a portion of the actuator. A shape memory polymer comprising a polymer composition which physically forms a network structure wherein the polymer composition has shape-memory behavior and can be formed into a permanent primary shape, re-formed into a stable secondary shape, and controllably actuated to recover the permanent primary shape. Polymers have optimal aliphatic network structures due to minimization of dangling chains by using monomers that are symmetrical and that have matching amine and hydroxyl groups providing polymers and polymer foams with clarity, tight (narrow temperature range) single transitions, and high shape recovery and recovery force that are especially useful for implanting in the human body.

  20. Bioabsorbable polymers in medicine: an overview.

    PubMed

    Vert, Michel

    2009-12-15

    Today the domains of life-respecting, degradable therapeutic materials and devices are among the most attractive areas in polymer science. Increasing attention is being paid to polymeric compounds that can be bioresorbable, i.e., degradable and ideally excreted or bio-assimilated - suitable to treat human diseases or trauma that require therapeutic assistance for a limited period of time, namely the healing period. Basically, biopolymers are of interest because of their inherent biodegradability. However, other characteristics limit their applications in the human body. Artificial polymers, i.e., polymers of non-natural origin, can be degradable in vivo and thus serve in time-limited biomedical or pharmacological therapy. The potential of these degradable polymers is discussed with respect to bioresorbability, with a special attention to polymers of the poly (α-hydroxy acid) type.

  1. Cell microencapsulation with synthetic polymers

    PubMed Central

    Olabisi, Ronke M

    2015-01-01

    The encapsulation of cells into polymeric microspheres or microcapsules has permitted the transplantation of cells into human and animal subjects without the need for immunosuppressants. Cell-based therapies use donor cells to provide sustained release of a therapeutic product, such as insulin, and have shown promise in treating a variety of diseases. Immunoisolation of these cells via microencapsulation is a hotly investigated field, and the preferred material of choice has been alginate, a natural polymer derived from seaweed due to its gelling conditions. Although many natural polymers tend to gel in conditions favorable to mammalian cell encapsulation, there remain challenges such as batch to batch variability and residual components from the original source that can lead to an immune response when implanted into a recipient. Synthetic materials have the potential to avoid these issues; however, historically they have required harsh polymerization conditions that are not favorable to mammalian cells. As research into microencapsulation grows, more investigators are exploring methods to microencapsulate cells into synthetic polymers. This review describes a variety of synthetic polymers used to microencapsulate cells. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A: 103A: 846–859, 2015. PMID:24771675

  2. THE SOLAR FLARE IRON ABUNDANCE

    SciTech Connect

    Phillips, K. J. H.; Dennis, B. R. E-mail: Brian.R.Dennis@nasa.gov

    2012-03-20

    The abundance of iron is measured from emission line complexes at 6.65 keV (Fe line) and 8 keV (Fe/Ni line) in RHESSI X-ray spectra during solar flares. Spectra during long-duration flares with steady declines were selected, with an isothermal assumption and improved data analysis methods over previous work. Two spectral fitting models give comparable results, viz., an iron abundance that is lower than previous coronal values but higher than photospheric values. In the preferred method, the estimated Fe abundance is A(Fe) = 7.91 {+-} 0.10 (on a logarithmic scale, with A(H) = 12) or 2.6 {+-} 0.6 times the photospheric Fe abundance. Our estimate is based on a detailed analysis of 1898 spectra taken during 20 flares. No variation from flare to flare is indicated. This argues for a fractionation mechanism similar to quiet-Sun plasma. The new value of A(Fe) has important implications for radiation loss curves, which are estimated.

  3. Actinide abundances in ordinary chondrites

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hagee, B.; Bernatowicz, T.J.; Podosek, F.A.; Johnson, M.L.; Burnett, D.S.; Tatsumoto, M.

    1990-01-01

    Measurements of 244Pu fission Xe, U, Th, and light REE (LREE) abundances, along with modal petrographic determinations of phosphate abundances, were carried out on equilibrated ordinary chondrites in order to define better the solar system Pu abundance and to determine the degree of variation of actinide and LREE abundances. Our data permit comparison of the directly measured Pu/ U ratio with that determined indirectly as (Pu/Nd) ?? (Nd/U) assuming that Pu behaves chemically as a LREE. Except for Guaren??a, and perhaps H chondrites in general, Pu concentrations are similar to that determined previously for St. Se??verin, although less precise because of higher trapped Xe contents. Trapped 130Xe 136Xe ratios appear to vary from meteorite to meteorite, but, relative to AVCC, all are similar in the sense of having less of the interstellar heavy Xe found in carbonaceous chondrite acid residues. The Pu/U and Pu/Nd ratios are consistent with previous data for St. Se??verin, but both tend to be slightly higher than those inferred from previous data on Angra dos Reis. Although significant variations exist, the distribution of our Th/U ratios, along with other precise isotope dilution data for ordinary chondrites, is rather symmetric about the CI chondrite value; however, actinide/(LREE) ratios are systematically lower than the CI value. Variations in actinide or LREE absolute and relative abundances are interpreted as reflecting differences in the proportions and/or compositions of more primitive components (chondrules and CAI materials?) incorporated into different regions of the ordinary chondrite parent bodies. The observed variations of Th/U, Nd/U, or Ce/U suggest that measurements of Pu/U on any single equilibrated ordinary chondrite specimen, such as St. Se??verin, should statistically be within ??20-30% of the average solar system value, although it is also clear that anomalous samples exist. ?? 1990.

  4. Diketopyrrolopyrrole Polymers for Organic Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Weiwei; Hendriks, Koen H; Wienk, Martijn M; Janssen, René A J

    2016-01-19

    Conjugated polymers have been extensively studied for application in organic solar cells. In designing new polymers, particular attention has been given to tuning the absorption spectrum, molecular energy levels, crystallinity, and charge carrier mobility to enhance performance. As a result, the power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of solar cells based on conjugated polymers as electron donor and fullerene derivatives as electron acceptor have exceeded 10% in single-junction and 11% in multijunction devices. Despite these efforts, it is notoriously difficult to establish thorough structure-property relationships that will be required to further optimize existing high-performance polymers to their intrinsic limits. In this Account, we highlight progress on the development and our understanding of diketopyrrolopyrrole (DPP) based conjugated polymers for polymer solar cells. The DPP moiety is strongly electron withdrawing and its polar nature enhances the tendency of DPP-based polymers to crystallize. As a result, DPP-based conjugated polymers often exhibit an advantageously broad and tunable optical absorption, up to 1000 nm, and high mobilities for holes and electrons, which can result in high photocurrents and good fill factors in solar cells. Here we focus on the structural modifications applied to DPP polymers and rationalize and explain the relationships between chemical structure and organic photovoltaic performance. The DPP polymers can be tuned via their aromatic substituents, their alkyl side chains, and the nature of the π-conjugated segment linking the units along the polymer chain. We show that these building blocks work together in determining the molecular conformation, the optical properties, the charge carrier mobility, and the solubility of the polymer. We identify the latter as a decisive parameter for DPP-based organic solar cells because it regulates the diameter of the semicrystalline DPP polymer fibers that form in the photovoltaic blends with

  5. Diketopyrrolopyrrole Polymers for Organic Solar Cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Weiwei; Hendriks, Koen H; Wienk, Martijn M; Janssen, René A J

    2016-01-19

    Conjugated polymers have been extensively studied for application in organic solar cells. In designing new polymers, particular attention has been given to tuning the absorption spectrum, molecular energy levels, crystallinity, and charge carrier mobility to enhance performance. As a result, the power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of solar cells based on conjugated polymers as electron donor and fullerene derivatives as electron acceptor have exceeded 10% in single-junction and 11% in multijunction devices. Despite these efforts, it is notoriously difficult to establish thorough structure-property relationships that will be required to further optimize existing high-performance polymers to their intrinsic limits. In this Account, we highlight progress on the development and our understanding of diketopyrrolopyrrole (DPP) based conjugated polymers for polymer solar cells. The DPP moiety is strongly electron withdrawing and its polar nature enhances the tendency of DPP-based polymers to crystallize. As a result, DPP-based conjugated polymers often exhibit an advantageously broad and tunable optical absorption, up to 1000 nm, and high mobilities for holes and electrons, which can result in high photocurrents and good fill factors in solar cells. Here we focus on the structural modifications applied to DPP polymers and rationalize and explain the relationships between chemical structure and organic photovoltaic performance. The DPP polymers can be tuned via their aromatic substituents, their alkyl side chains, and the nature of the π-conjugated segment linking the units along the polymer chain. We show that these building blocks work together in determining the molecular conformation, the optical properties, the charge carrier mobility, and the solubility of the polymer. We identify the latter as a decisive parameter for DPP-based organic solar cells because it regulates the diameter of the semicrystalline DPP polymer fibers that form in the photovoltaic blends with

  6. Polymer matrix effects on acid generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fedynyshyn, Theodore H.; Goodman, Russell B.; Roberts, Jeanette

    2008-03-01

    We have measured the acid generation efficiency with EUV exposure of a PAG in different polymer matrixes representing the main classes of resist polymers as well as some previously described fluoropolymers for lithographic applications. The polymer matrix was found to have a significant effect on the acid generation efficiency of the PAG studied. A linear relationship exists between the absorbance of the resist and the acid generation efficiency. A second inverse relationship exists between Dill C and aromatic content of the resist polymer. It was shown that polymer sensitization is important for acid generation with EUV exposure and the Dill C parameter can be increased by up to five times with highly absorbing non-aromatic polymers, such as non-aromatic fluoropolymers, over an ESCAP polymer. The increase in the Dill C value will lead to an up to five fold increase in resist sensitivity. It is our expectation that these insights into the nature of polymer matrix effects on acid generation could lead to increased sensitivity for EUV resists.

  7. Protein-polymer nanoreactors for medical applications.

    PubMed

    Palivan, Cornelia G; Fischer-Onaca, Ozana; Delcea, Mihaela; Itel, Fabian; Meier, Wolfgang

    2012-04-01

    Major challenges that confront nanoscience in medicine today include the development of efficacious therapies with minimum side effects, diagnostic methods featuring significantly higher sensitivities and selectivities, and personalized diagnostics and therapeutics for theragnostic approaches. With these goals in mind, combining biological molecules and synthetic carriers/templates, such as polymer supramolecular assemblies, represents a very promising strategy. In this critical review, we present protein-polymer systems as reaction spaces at the nano-scale in which the enzymatic reactions take place inside polymer supramolecular assembly, at its interface with the environment or in a combination of both. The location of the protein(s) with respect to the polymer assembly generates a diversity of systems ranging from nanoreactors to active enzymatic polymer surfaces. We describe these both in terms of general modelling and addressing the specific conditions and requirements related to the medical domain. We will particularly present protein-polymer nanoreactors that provide protected spaces for enzymatic reactions. We also show how polymer supramolecular structures, such as micelles, capsules, dendrimers and vesicles, can accommodate sensitive biomolecules to mimic natural systems and functions, and to serve as avenues for new medical approaches. Even though not yet on the market, we will emphasize possible applications of protein-polymer systems that generate reaction nanospaces-as novel ways to advanced medicine (264 references).

  8. Geographical Range and Local Abundance of Tree Species in China

    PubMed Central

    Ren, Haibao; Condit, Richard; Chen, Bin; Mi, Xiangcheng; Cao, Min; Ye, Wanhui; Hao, Zhanqing; Ma, Keping

    2013-01-01

    Most studies on the geographical distribution of species have utilized a few well-known taxa in Europe and North America, with little research in China and its wide range of climate and forest types. We assembled large datasets to quantify the geographic ranges of tree species in China and to test several biogeographic hypotheses: 1) whether locally abundant species tend to be geographically widespread; 2) whether species are more abundant towards their range-centers; and 3) how abundances are correlated between sites. Local abundances of 651 species were derived from four tree plots of 20–25 ha where all individuals ≥1 cm in stem diameter were mapped and identified taxonomically. Range sizes of these species across China were then estimated from over 460,000 geo-referenced records; a Bayesian approach was used, allowing careful measures of error of each range estimate. The log-transformed range sizes had a bell-shaped distribution with a median of 703,000 km2, and >90% of 651 species had ranges >105 km2. There was no relationship between local abundance and range size, and no evidence for species being more abundant towards their range-centers. Finally, species’ abundances were positively correlated between sites. The widespread nature of most tree species in China suggests few are vulnerable to global extinction, and there is no indication of the double-peril that would result if rare species also had narrow ranges. PMID:24130772

  9. Multicomponent polymer materials

    SciTech Connect

    Paul, D.R.; Sperling, L.H.

    1986-01-01

    Interpenetrating polymer networks are discussed, taking into account interpenetrating polymer networks based on polybutadiene and polystyrene, polyurethane-polysiloxane simultaneous interpenetrating polymer networks, extraction studies and morphology of physical-chemical interpenetrating polymer networks based on block polymer and polystyrene, twoand three-component interpenetrating polymer networks, and poly(acrylourethane)-polyepoxide semiinterpenetrating networks formed by electron-beam curing. Other topics studied are related to the characterization of polymer blends, the characterization of block copolymers, the mechanical behavior, and rheology and applications. Attention is given to a new silicone flame-retardant system for thermoplastics, recent developments in interpenetrating polymer networks and related materials, miscibility in random copolymer blends, crystallization and melting in compatible polymer blends, and fatigue in rubber-modified epoxies and other polyblends.

  10. Abundance of Asymmetric Dark Matter in Brane World Cosmology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdusattar, Haximjan; Iminniyaz, Hoernisa

    2016-09-01

    Relic abundance of asymmetric Dark Matter particles in brane world cosmological scenario is investigated in this article. Hubble expansion rate is enhanced in brane world cosmology and it affects the relic abundance of asymmetric Dark Matter particles. We analyze how the relic abundance of asymmetric Dark Matter is changed in this model. We show that in such kind of nonstandard cosmological scenario, indirect detection of asymmetric Dark Matter is possible if the cross section is small enough which let the anti-particle abundance kept in the same amount with the particle. We show the indirect detection signal constraints can be used to such model only when the cross section and the 5-dimensional Planck mass scale are in appropriate values. Supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant No. 11365022

  11. Lipid-absorbing Polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marsh, H. E., Jr.; Wallace, C. J.

    1973-01-01

    The removal of bile acids and cholesterol by polymeric absorption is discussed in terms of micelle-polymer interaction. The results obtained with a polymer composed of 75 parts PEO and 25 parts PB plus curing ingredients show an absorption of 305 to 309%, based on original polymer weight. Particle size effects on absorption rate are analyzed. It is concluded that crosslinked polyethylene oxide polymers will absorb water, crosslinked polybutadiene polymers will absorb lipids; neither polymer will absorb appreciable amounts of lipids from micellar solutions of lipids in water.

  12. Prickly business: abundance of sea urchins on breakwaters and coral reefs in Dubai.

    PubMed

    Bauman, Andrew G; Dunshea, Glenn; Feary, David A; Hoey, Andrew S

    2016-04-30

    Echinometra mathaei is a common echinoid on tropical reefs and where abundant plays an important role in the control of algal communities. Despite high prevalence of E. mathaei on southern Persian/Arabian Gulf reefs, their abundance and distribution is poorly known. Spatial and temporal patterns in population abundance were examined at 12 sites between breakwater and natural reef habitats in Dubai (UAE) every 3 months from 2008 to 2010. Within the breakwater habitat, densities were greatest at shallow wave-exposed sites, and reduced with both decreasing wave-exposure and increasing depth. Interestingly, E. mathaei were significantly more abundant on exposed breakwaters than natural reef sites, presumably due to differences in habitat structure and benthic cover. Population abundances differed seasonally, with peak abundances during summer (July-September) and lower abundances in winter (December-February). Seasonal fluctuations are likely the result of peak annual recruitment pulses coupled with increased fish predation from summer to winter. PMID:26563547

  13. Prickly business: abundance of sea urchins on breakwaters and coral reefs in Dubai.

    PubMed

    Bauman, Andrew G; Dunshea, Glenn; Feary, David A; Hoey, Andrew S

    2016-04-30

    Echinometra mathaei is a common echinoid on tropical reefs and where abundant plays an important role in the control of algal communities. Despite high prevalence of E. mathaei on southern Persian/Arabian Gulf reefs, their abundance and distribution is poorly known. Spatial and temporal patterns in population abundance were examined at 12 sites between breakwater and natural reef habitats in Dubai (UAE) every 3 months from 2008 to 2010. Within the breakwater habitat, densities were greatest at shallow wave-exposed sites, and reduced with both decreasing wave-exposure and increasing depth. Interestingly, E. mathaei were significantly more abundant on exposed breakwaters than natural reef sites, presumably due to differences in habitat structure and benthic cover. Population abundances differed seasonally, with peak abundances during summer (July-September) and lower abundances in winter (December-February). Seasonal fluctuations are likely the result of peak annual recruitment pulses coupled with increased fish predation from summer to winter.

  14. Development of a directly patterned low-surface-energy polymer brush in supercritical carbon dioxide.

    PubMed

    Rastogi, Abhinav; Paik, Marvin Y; Ober, Christopher K

    2009-09-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) is a sustainable solvent because it is nonflammable, exhibits a relatively low toxicity, and is naturally abundant. As a selective, nonpolar solvent, supercritical CO2 (scCO2) is an ideal fit for the development of low-surface-energy polymers. The development of directly patterned poly(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl methacrylate) (PTFEMA) brushes in scCO2 was investigated. PTFEMA, in particular, was selected over other fluorinated polymers because of its very high electron-beam (e-beam) sensitivity. PTFEMA brushes were grown on silicon substrates via controlled surface-initiated atom-transfer radical polymerization of TFEMA. Surface analysis techniques including ellipsometry, contact-angle goniometry, atomic force microscopy (AFM), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy were used to characterize the thickness, hydrophilicity, roughness, and chemical composition of the polymer brushes. PTFEMA brushes were directly patterned in a single step using e-beam lithography and were processed in an environmentally benign scCO2 solvent. Tapping-mode AFM imaging confirmed the successful e-beam patterning and development of these brushes. The sensitivity of PTFEMA brushes toward direct patterning with the e-beam, followed by scCO2 development, was studied and compared to development in tetrahydrofuran solvent. Using this direct-patterning method, followed by dry development in scCO2, highly resolved nanostructured polymer brush lines down to 78 nm could be prepared. This method can be generalized to prepare fluorinated low-surface-energy polymer brush surfaces in a single step for various applications. PMID:20355827

  15. Coronal abundances and their variation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saba, Julia L. R.

    1994-01-01

    This contract supports the investigation of elemental abundances in the solar corona, principally through analysis of high-resolution software X-ray spectra from the Flat Crystal Spectrometer on NASA's Solar Maximum Mission. The goals of the study are a characterization of the mean values of relative abundances of elements accessible in the FCS data, and information on the extent and circumstances of their variability. This report is a summation of the data analysis and reporting activities which occurred since the last report, submitted two months early, in April 1994, to facilitate evaluation of the first year's progress for contract renewal. Hence this report covers the period 15 April 1994 - 15 December 1994. A list of publications resulting from this research is included.

  16. Electrospinning polymer blends for biomimetic scaffolds for ACL tissue engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia, Vanessa Lizeth

    The anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) rupture is one of the most common knee injuries. Current ACL reconstructive strategies consist of using an autograft or an allograft to replace the ligament. However, limitations have led researchers to create tissue engineered grafts, known as scaffolds, through electrospinning. Scaffolds made of natural and synthetic polymer blends have the potential to promote cell adhesion while having strong mechanical properties. However, enzymes found in the knee are known to degrade tissues and affect the healing of intra-articular injuries. Results suggest that the natural polymers used in this study modify the thermal properties and tensile strength of the synthetic polymers when blended. Scanning electron microscopy display bead-free and enzyme biodegradability of the fibers. Raman spectroscopy confirms the presence of the natural and synthetic polymers in the scaffolds while, amino acid analysis present the types of amino acids and their concentrations found in the natural polymers.

  17. The solar abundance of thulium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, J. E.; Aller, L. H.

    1974-01-01

    Consideration of one relatively unblended line of the solar spectrum, namely, the 3131.258-A line of Tm II, which yields a thulium abundance of 0.80 plus or minus 0.10 with the Corliss and Bozman (1962) f-value. The uncertainty of this figure is discussed in conjunction with the contradictory findings of some other investigators. The need for further detailed study of the lanthanides by the method of spectrum synthesis is pointed out.

  18. Multiple peaks of species abundance distributions induced by sparse interactions.

    PubMed

    Obuchi, Tomoyuki; Kabashima, Yoshiyuki; Tokita, Kei

    2016-08-01

    We investigate the replicator dynamics with "sparse" symmetric interactions which represent specialist-specialist interactions in ecological communities. By considering a large self-interaction u, we conduct a perturbative expansion which manifests that the nature of the interactions has a direct impact on the species abundance distribution. The central results are all species coexistence in a realistic range of the model parameters and that a certain discrete nature of the interactions induces multiple peaks in the species abundance distribution, providing the possibility of theoretically explaining multiple peaks observed in various field studies. To get more quantitative information, we also construct a non-perturbative theory which becomes exact on tree-like networks if all the species coexist, providing exact critical values of u below which extinct species emerge. Numerical simulations in various different situations are conducted and they clarify the robustness of the presented mechanism of all species coexistence and multiple peaks in the species abundance distributions. PMID:27627322

  19. Multiple peaks of species abundance distributions induced by sparse interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obuchi, Tomoyuki; Kabashima, Yoshiyuki; Tokita, Kei

    2016-08-01

    We investigate the replicator dynamics with "sparse" symmetric interactions which represent specialist-specialist interactions in ecological communities. By considering a large self-interaction u , we conduct a perturbative expansion which manifests that the nature of the interactions has a direct impact on the species abundance distribution. The central results are all species coexistence in a realistic range of the model parameters and that a certain discrete nature of the interactions induces multiple peaks in the species abundance distribution, providing the possibility of theoretically explaining multiple peaks observed in various field studies. To get more quantitative information, we also construct a non-perturbative theory which becomes exact on tree-like networks if all the species coexist, providing exact critical values of u below which extinct species emerge. Numerical simulations in various different situations are conducted and they clarify the robustness of the presented mechanism of all species coexistence and multiple peaks in the species abundance distributions.

  20. Chlorine Abundances in Martian Meteorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bogard, D.D.; Garrison, D.H.; Park, J.

    2009-01-01

    Chlorine measurements made in martian surface rocks by robotic spacecraft typically give Chlorine (Cl) abundances of approximately 0.1-0.8%. In contrast, Cl abundances in martian meteorites appear lower, although data is limited, and martian nakhlites were also subjected to Cl contamination by Mars surface brines. Chlorine abundances reported by one lab for whole rock (WR) samples of Shergotty, ALH77005, and EET79001 range 108-14 ppm, whereas Cl in nakhlites range 73-1900 ppm. Measurements of Cl in various martian weathering phases of nakhlites varied 0.04-4.7% and reveal significant concentration of Cl by martian brines Martian meteorites contain much lower Chlorine than those measured in martian surface rocks and give further confirmation that Cl in these surface rocks was introduced by brines and weathering. It has been argued that Cl is twice as effective as water in lowering the melting point and promoting melting at shallower martian depths, and that significant Cl in the shergottite source region would negate any need for significant water. However, this conclusion was based on experiments that utilized Cl concentrations more analogous to martian surface rocks than to shergottite meteorites, and may not be applicable to shergottites.

  1. Abundance anomalies in tidal disruption events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochanek, C. S.

    2016-05-01

    The ˜10 per cent of tidal disruption events (TDEs) due to stars more massive than M* ≳ M⊙ should show abundance anomalies due to stellar evolution in helium, carbon and nitrogen, but not oxygen. Helium is always enhanced, but only by up to ˜25 per cent on average because it becomes inaccessible once it is sequestered in the high-density core as the star leaves the main sequence. However, portions of the debris associated with the disrupted core of a main-sequence star can be enhanced in helium by factors of 2-3 for debris at a common orbital period. These helium abundance variations may be a contributor to the observed diversity of hydrogen and helium line strengths in TDEs. A still more striking anomaly is the rapid enhancement of nitrogen and the depletion of carbon due to the CNO cycle - stars with M* ≳ M⊙ quickly show an increase in their average N/C ratio by factors of 3-10. Because low-mass stars evolve slowly and high-mass stars are rare, TDEs showing high N/C will almost all be due to ˜1-2 M⊙ stars disrupted on the main sequence. Like helium, portions of the debris will show still larger changes in C and N, and the anomalies decline as the star leaves the main sequence. The enhanced [N/C] abundance ratio of these TDEs provides the first natural explanation for the rare, nitrogen-rich quasars and may also explain the strong nitrogen emission seen in ultraviolet spectra of ASASSN-14li.

  2. Current and relic carbon using natural abundance carbon-13

    SciTech Connect

    layse,MF; Clapp,CE; Allmaras,RR; Linden,D.R; Molina, JAE.; Copeland,SM; Dowdy,RH

    2002-05-01

    The role of agricultural practices on soil carbon (C) dynamics is critical to improved soil management. The main objective was to examine the C interactions resulting from crop changes under different tillage and residue treatments.

  3. Tailored bifunctional polymer for plutonium monitoring.

    PubMed

    Paul, Sumana; Pandey, Ashok K; Kumar, Pranaw; Kaity, Santu; Aggarwal, Suresh K

    2014-07-01

    Monitoring of actinides with sophisticated conventional methods is affected by matrix interferences, spectral interferences, isobaric interferences, polyatomic interferences, and abundance sensitivity problems. To circumvent these limitations, a self-supported disk and membrane-supported bifunctional polymer were tailored in the present work for acidity-dependent selectivity toward Pu(IV). The bifunctional polymer was found to be better than the polymer containing either a phosphate group or a sulfonic acid group in terms of (i) higher Pu(IV) sorption efficiency at 3-4 mol L(-1) HNO3, (ii) selective preconcentration of Pu(IV) in the presence of a trivalent actinide such as Am(III), and (iii) preferential sorption of Pu(IV) in the presence of a large excess of U(VI). The bifunctional polymer was formed as a self-supported matrix by bulk polymerization and also as a 1-2 μm thin layer anchored on a microporous poly(ether sulfone) by surface grafting. The proportions of sulfonic acid and phosphate groups in both the self-supported disk and membrane-supported bifunctional polymer were found to be the same as expected from the mole proportions of monomers in polymerizing solutions used for syntheses. α radiography by a solid-state nuclear track detector indicated fairly homogeneous anchoring of the bifunctional polymer on the surface of the membrane. Pu(IV) preconcentrated on a single bifunctional bead was used for determination of the Pu isotopic composition by thermal ionization mass spectrometry. The membrane-supported bifunctional polymer was used for preconcentration and subsequent quantification of Pu(IV) by α spectrometry using the absolute efficiency at a fixed counting geometry. The analytical performance of the membrane-supported-bifunctional-polymer-based α spectrometry method was found to be highly reproducible for assay of Pu(IV) in a variety of complex samples.

  4. Reducing the content of carrier polymer in pectin nanofibers by electrospinning at low loading followed with selective washing.

    PubMed

    Cui, Sisi; Yao, Bing; Sun, Xue; Hu, Junli; Zhou, Yifa; Liu, Yichun

    2016-02-01

    Nanofibers of natural polymers represent an essential class of materials in biomedicine. Pectin is a plant-sourced anionic polysaccharide widely used in food products and biomedicine owning to its abundance, biocompatibility and inherent bioactivity. However, current electrospun pectin nanofibers are suffered from high content of carrier polymer, which may lead to low integrity and mechanical strength as well as in vivo toxicity. We report here a strategy to reduce the content of carrier polymer, polyethylene oxide (PEO) in our study, in pectin nanofibers, via electrospinning at low loading followed with selective washing. With improved electrospinning condition, we first enabled electrospinning of pectin nanofibers at low PEO loading. Then the PEO was removed by washing with a selective solvent to give pectin nanofibers containing only 1.5% PEO. The strategy was versatile to pectins from various sources and of various degree of esterification. The pectin nanofibers exhibited Young's modulus as high as 358.5MPa. In view of their rich bioactivity, the pectin nanofibers of low content of carrier polymer are promising materials for a wide range of biomedical applications. PMID:26652444

  5. Reducing the content of carrier polymer in pectin nanofibers by electrospinning at low loading followed with selective washing.

    PubMed

    Cui, Sisi; Yao, Bing; Sun, Xue; Hu, Junli; Zhou, Yifa; Liu, Yichun

    2016-02-01

    Nanofibers of natural polymers represent an essential class of materials in biomedicine. Pectin is a plant-sourced anionic polysaccharide widely used in food products and biomedicine owning to its abundance, biocompatibility and inherent bioactivity. However, current electrospun pectin nanofibers are suffered from high content of carrier polymer, which may lead to low integrity and mechanical strength as well as in vivo toxicity. We report here a strategy to reduce the content of carrier polymer, polyethylene oxide (PEO) in our study, in pectin nanofibers, via electrospinning at low loading followed with selective washing. With improved electrospinning condition, we first enabled electrospinning of pectin nanofibers at low PEO loading. Then the PEO was removed by washing with a selective solvent to give pectin nanofibers containing only 1.5% PEO. The strategy was versatile to pectins from various sources and of various degree of esterification. The pectin nanofibers exhibited Young's modulus as high as 358.5MPa. In view of their rich bioactivity, the pectin nanofibers of low content of carrier polymer are promising materials for a wide range of biomedical applications.

  6. Robust Abundance Estimation in Animal Surveys with Imperfect Detection

    EPA Science Inventory

    Surveys of animal abundance are central to the conservation and management of living natural resources. However, detection uncertainty complicates the sampling process of many species. One sampling method employed to deal with this problem is depletion (or removal) surveys in whi...

  7. The Abundance of Interstellar Fluorine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lauroesch, James T.

    2005-01-01

    The primary objective of this program was to obtain FUSE observations of the interstellar absorption lines of F I at 951 and 954 Angstroms to derive the abundance of fluorine toward the star HD 164816. The nucleosynthetic source(s) of fluorine are still a matter of debate - the present day abundance of fluorine can potentially constrain models for pulsationally driven dredge-up in asymptotic giant branch stars. An accurate measure for the depletion behavior of fluorine will determine whether it may be detectable in QSO absorption line systems - an unambiguous detection of fluorine at suitably high redshifts would provide the best evidence to date for the neutrino process in massive stars. Furthermore, due to its extreme reactivity, measurement of the gas-phase interstellar fluorine abundance is important for models of grain chemistry. Despite the importance of measuring the interstellar fluorine abundance, at the time of our proposal only one previous detection has been made due to the low relative abundance of fluorine, the lack of lines outside the far-UV, and the blending of the available F I transitions with lines of Hz. The star HD 164816 is associated with the Lagoon nebula (M8), and at a distance of approximately 1.5 kpc probes both distant and local gas. Beginning April 8th, 2004 FUSE FP-Split observations of the star HD 164816 were obtained for this program. This data became available in the FUSE data archive May 21, 2004, and these observations were then downloaded and we began our analysis. Our analysis procedure has involved (1) fitting stellar models to the FUSE spectra, (2) using the multiple lines of Hz and N I at other wavelengths in the FUSE bandpass to derive column densities for the lines of H2 and N I which are blended with the F I features at 951 and 954 angstroms (3) the measurement of the column densities of F I and the species O I and C1 I which are important species for the dis-entangling of dust and nucleosynthetic effects. As discussed in

  8. The effect of pressure, isotopic (H/D) substitution, and other variables on miscibility in polymer-solvent systems. The nature of the demixing process; dynamic light scattering and small angle neutron scattering studies. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Van Hook, W.A.

    2000-01-01

    A research program examining the effects of pressure, isotope substitution and other variables on miscibility in polymer solvent systems is described. The techniques employed included phase equilibrium measurements and dynamic light scattering and small angle neutron scattering.

  9. Cycling Back to Nature with Biodegradable Polymers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Horton, Robert L.; And Others

    This sourcebook, for use with groups of up to 25 young people ages 10 and up, is designed to stimulate a sense of environmental stewardship for the planet through group discussion, role playing, experimentation, demonstration, and simulation. Lessons that stand alone or can be used in sequence require common materials and little preparation,…

  10. Polymer Fluid Dynamics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bird, R. Byron

    1980-01-01

    Problems in polymer fluid dynamics are described, including development of constitutive equations, rheometry, kinetic theory, flow visualization, heat transfer studies, flows with phase change, two-phase flow, polymer unit operations, and drag reduction. (JN)

  11. Introduction to Polymer Chemistry.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harris, Frank W.

    1981-01-01

    Reviews the physical and chemical properties of polymers and the two major methods of polymer synthesis: addition (chain, chain-growth, or chain-reaction), and condensation (step-growth or step-reaction) polymerization. (JN)

  12. Polymer composites containing nanotubes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bley, Richard A. (Inventor)

    2008-01-01

    The present invention relates to polymer composite materials containing carbon nanotubes, particularly to those containing singled-walled nanotubes. The invention provides a polymer composite comprising one or more base polymers, one or more functionalized m-phenylenevinylene-2,5-disubstituted-p-phenylenevinylene polymers and carbon nanotubes. The invention also relates to functionalized m-phenylenevinylene-2,5-disubstituted-p-phenylenevinylene polymers, particularly to m-phenylenevinylene-2,5-disubstituted-p-phenylenevinylene polymers having side chain functionalization, and more particularly to m-phenylenevinylene-2,5-disubstituted-p-phenylenevinylene polymers having olefin side chains and alkyl epoxy side chains. The invention further relates to methods of making polymer composites comprising carbon nanotubes.

  13. Mechanical Properties of Polymers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aklonis, J. J.

    1981-01-01

    Mechanical properties (stress-strain relationships) of polymers are reviewed, taking into account both time and temperature factors. Topics include modulus-temperature behavior of polymers, time dependence, time-temperature correspondence, and mechanical models. (JN)

  14. Anion exchange polymer electrolytes

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Yu Seung; Kim, Dae Sik

    2015-06-02

    Anion exchange polymer electrolytes that include guanidinium functionalized polymers may be used as membranes and binders for electrocatalysts in preparation of anodes for electrochemical cells such as solid alkaline fuel cells.

  15. Playing with Polymers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chemecology, 1997

    1997-01-01

    Presents an activity that enables students to gain a better understanding of the importance of polymers. Students perform an experiment in which polymer chains of polyvinyl acetate form crosslinks. Includes background information and discussion questions. (DDR)

  16. Dendritic polyurea polymers.

    PubMed

    Tuerp, David; Bruchmann, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Dendritic polymers, subsuming dendrimers as well as hyperbranched or highly branched polymers are well established in the field of polymer chemistry. This review article focuses on urea based dendritic polymers and summarizes their synthetic routes through both isocyanate and isocyanate-free processes. Furthermore, this article highlights applications where dendritic polyureas show their specific chemical and physical potential. For these purposes scientific publications as well as patent literature are investigated to generate a comprehensive overview on this topic.

  17. Assessment of basic contamination withstand voltage characteristics of polymer insulators

    SciTech Connect

    Matsuoka, R.; Shinokubo, H.; Kondo, K.; Mizuno, Y.; Naito, K.; Fujimura, T.; Terada, T.

    1996-10-01

    An artificial contamination method for hydrophobic polymer insulators was newly developed, which can provide a uniform contaminant layer similar to the natural one neither by damaging the polymer surface nor by adding any chemical agent to the conventional contamination slurry. Using this method, basic contamination withstand voltage characteristics of polymer insulators were investigated comparing with those of porcelain insulators. The results show that although hydrophobic withstand voltage characteristics critical reduction of withstand voltage occurs sometimes under rapid and heavy wetting and contamination conditions.

  18. The solar abundance of Oxygen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grevesse, N.

    2009-07-01

    With Martin Asplund (Max Planck Institute of Astrophysics, Garching) and Jacques Sauval (Observatoire Royal de Belgique, Brussels) I recently published detailed reviews on the solar chemical composition ({Asplund et al. 2005}, {Grevesse et al. 2007}). A new one, with Pat Scott (Stockholm University) as additional co-author, will appear in Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics ({Asplund et al. 2009}). Here we briefly analyze recent works on the solar abundance of Oxygen and recommend a value of 8.70 in the usual astronomical scale.

  19. Abundance measurements in stellar environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leone, F.

    2014-05-01

    Most of what we know about stars, and systems of stars, is derived from the analysis of their electromagnetic radiation. This lesson is an attempt to describe to Physicists, without any Astrophysical background, the framework to understand the present status of abundance determination in stellar environments and its limit. These notes are dedicated to the recently passed, November 21, 2013, Prof. Dimitri Mihalas who spent his life confuting the 19th century positivist philosopher Auguste Comte who stated that we shall not at all be able to determine the chemical composition of stars.

  20. Abundance measurements in stellar environments

    SciTech Connect

    Leone, F.

    2014-05-09

    Most of what we know about stars, and systems of stars, is derived from the analysis of their electromagnetic radiation. This lesson is an attempt to describe to Physicists, without any Astrophysical background, the framework to understand the present status of abundance determination in stellar environments and its limit. These notes are dedicated to the recently passed, November 21, 2013, Prof. Dimitri Mihalas who spent his life confuting the 19th century positivist philosopher Auguste Comte who stated that we shall not at all be able to determine the chemical composition of stars.

  1. Primordial lithium abundance in catalyzed big bang nucleosynthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Bird, Chris; Koopmans, Kristen; Pospelov, Maxim

    2008-10-15

    There exists a well-known problem with the {sup 7}Li+{sup 7}Be abundance predicted by standard big bang nucleosynthesis being larger than the value observed in population II stars. The catalysis of big bang nucleosynthesis by metastable, {tau}{sub X} > or approx. 10{sup 3} sec, charged particles X{sup -} is capable of suppressing the primordial {sup 7}Li+{sup 7}Be abundance and making it consistent with the observations. We show that to produce the correct abundance, this mechanism of suppression places a requirement on the initial abundance of X{sup -} at temperatures of 4x10{sup 8} K to be on the order of or larger than 0.02 per baryon, which is within the natural range of abundances in models with metastable electroweak-scale particles. The suppression of {sup 7}Li+{sup 7}Be is triggered by the formation of ({sup 7}BeX{sup -}) compound nuclei, with fast depletion of their abundances by catalyzed proton reactions, and in some models by direct capture of X{sup -} on {sup 7}Be. The combination of {sup 7}Li+{sup 7}Be and {sup 6}Li constraints favors the window of lifetimes, 1000 s < or approx. {tau}{sub X}{<=}2000 s.

  2. Urban warming drives insect pest abundance on street trees.

    PubMed

    Meineke, Emily K; Dunn, Robert R; Sexton, Joseph O; Frank, Steven D

    2013-01-01

    Cities profoundly alter biological communities, favoring some species over others, though the mechanisms that govern these changes are largely unknown. Herbivorous arthropod pests are often more abundant in urban than in rural areas, and urban outbreaks have been attributed to reduced control by predators and parasitoids and to increased susceptibility of stressed urban plants. These hypotheses, however, leave many outbreaks unexplained and fail to predict variation in pest abundance within cities. Here we show that the abundance of a common insect pest is positively related to temperature even when controlling for other habitat characteristics. The scale insect Parthenolecanium quercifex was 13 times more abundant on willow oak trees in the hottest parts of Raleigh, NC, in the southeastern United States, than in cooler areas, though parasitism rates were similar. We further separated the effects of heat from those of natural enemies and plant quality in a greenhouse reciprocal transplant experiment. P. quercifex collected from hot urban trees became more abundant in hot greenhouses than in cool greenhouses, whereas the abundance of P. quercifex collected from cooler urban trees remained low in hot and cool greenhouses. Parthenolecanium quercifex living in urban hot spots succeed with warming, and they do so because some demes have either acclimatized or adapted to high temperatures. Our results provide the first evidence that heat can be a key driver of insect pest outbreaks on urban trees. Since urban warming is similar in magnitude to global warming predicted in the next 50 years, pest abundance on city trees may foreshadow widespread outbreaks as natural forests also grow warmer.

  3. Fire-safe polymers and polymer composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Huiqing

    The intrinsic relationships between polymer structure, composition and fire behavior have been explored to develop new fire-safe polymeric materials. Different experimental techniques, especially three milligram-scale methods---pyrolysis-combustion flow calorimetry (PCFC), simultaneous thermal analysis (STA) and pyrolysis GC/MS---have been combined to fully characterize the thermal decomposition and flammability of polymers and polymer composites. Thermal stability, mass loss rate, char yield and properties of decomposition volatiles were found to be the most important parameters in determining polymer flammability. Most polymers decompose by either an unzipping or a random chain scission mechanism with an endothermic decomposition of 100--900 J/g. Aromatic or heteroaromatic rings, conjugated double or triple bonds and heteroatoms such as halogens, N, O, S, P and Si are the basic structural units for fire-resistant polymers. The flammability of polymers can also be successfully estimated by combining pyrolysis GC/MS results or chemical structures with TGA results. The thermal decomposition and flammability of two groups of inherently fire-resistant polymers---poly(hydroxyamide) (PHA) and its derivatives, and bisphenol C (BPC II) polyarylates---have been systematically studied. PHA and most of its derivatives have extremely low heat release rates and very high char yields upon combustion. PHA and its halogen derivatives can completely cyclize into quasi-polybenzoxazole (PBO) structures at low temperatures. However, the methoxy and phosphate derivatives show a very different behavior during decomposition and combustion. Molecular modeling shows that the formation of an enol intermediate is the rate-determining step in the thermal cyclization of PHA. BPC II-polyarylate is another extremely flame-resistant polymer. It can be used as an efficient flame-retardant agent in copolymers and blends. From PCFC results, the total heat of combustion of these copolymers or blends

  4. Drug delivery's quest for polymers: Where are the frontiers?

    PubMed

    Merkle, Hans P

    2015-11-01

    Since the legendary 1964 article of Folkman and Long entitled "The use of silicone rubber as a carrier for prolonged drug therapy" the role of polymers in controlled drug delivery has come a long way. Today it is evident that polymers play a crucial if not the prime role in this field. The latest boost owes to the interest in drug delivery for the purpose of tissue engineering in regenerative medicine. The focus of this commentary is on a selection of general and personal observations that are characteristic for the current state of polymer therapeutics and carriers. It briefly highlights selected examples for the long march of synthetic polymer-drug conjugates from bench to bedside, comments on the ambivalence of selected polymers as inert excipients versus biological response modifiers, and on the yet unsolved dilemma of cationic polymers for the delivery of nucleic acid therapeutics. Further subjects are the complex design of multifunctional polymeric carriers including recent concepts towards functional supramolecular polymers, as well as observations on stimuli-sensitive polymers and the currently ongoing trend towards natural and naturally-derived biopolymers. The final topic is the discovery and early development of a novel type of biodegradable polyesters for parenteral use. Altogether, it is not the basic and applied research in polymer therapeutics and carriers, but the translational process that is the key hurdle to proceed towards an authoritative approval of new polymer therapeutics and carriers.

  5. Drug delivery's quest for polymers: Where are the frontiers?

    PubMed

    Merkle, Hans P

    2015-11-01

    Since the legendary 1964 article of Folkman and Long entitled "The use of silicone rubber as a carrier for prolonged drug therapy" the role of polymers in controlled drug delivery has come a long way. Today it is evident that polymers play a crucial if not the prime role in this field. The latest boost owes to the interest in drug delivery for the purpose of tissue engineering in regenerative medicine. The focus of this commentary is on a selection of general and personal observations that are characteristic for the current state of polymer therapeutics and carriers. It briefly highlights selected examples for the long march of synthetic polymer-drug conjugates from bench to bedside, comments on the ambivalence of selected polymers as inert excipients versus biological response modifiers, and on the yet unsolved dilemma of cationic polymers for the delivery of nucleic acid therapeutics. Further subjects are the complex design of multifunctional polymeric carriers including recent concepts towards functional supramolecular polymers, as well as observations on stimuli-sensitive polymers and the currently ongoing trend towards natural and naturally-derived biopolymers. The final topic is the discovery and early development of a novel type of biodegradable polyesters for parenteral use. Altogether, it is not the basic and applied research in polymer therapeutics and carriers, but the translational process that is the key hurdle to proceed towards an authoritative approval of new polymer therapeutics and carriers. PMID:26614554

  6. Systematic comparison of model polymer nanocomposite mechanics.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Senbo; Peter, Christine; Kremer, Kurt

    2016-01-01

    Polymer nanocomposites render a range of outstanding materials from natural products such as silk, sea shells and bones, to synthesized nanoclay or carbon nanotube reinforced polymer systems. In contrast to the fast expanding interest in this type of material, the fundamental mechanisms of their mixing, phase behavior and reinforcement, especially for higher nanoparticle content as relevant for bio-inorganic composites, are still not fully understood. Although polymer nanocomposites exhibit diverse morphologies, qualitatively their mechanical properties are believed to be governed by a few parameters, namely their internal polymer network topology, nanoparticle volume fraction, particle surface properties and so on. Relating material mechanics to such elementary parameters is the purpose of this work. By taking a coarse-grained molecular modeling approach, we study an range of different polymer nanocomposites. We vary polymer nanoparticle connectivity, surface geometry and volume fraction to systematically study rheological/mechanical properties. Our models cover different materials, and reproduce key characteristics of real nanocomposites, such as phase separation, mechanical reinforcement. The results shed light on establishing elementary structure, property and function relationship of polymer nanocomposites. PMID:27623170

  7. Stochastic resonance during a polymer translocation process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mondal, Debasish; Muthukumar, M.

    2016-04-01

    We have studied the occurrence of stochastic resonance when a flexible polymer chain undergoes a single-file translocation through a nano-pore separating two spherical cavities, under a time-periodic external driving force. The translocation of the chain is controlled by a free energy barrier determined by chain length, pore length, pore-polymer interaction, and confinement inside the donor and receiver cavities. The external driving force is characterized by a frequency and amplitude. By combining the Fokker-Planck formalism for polymer translocation and a two-state model for stochastic resonance, we have derived analytical formulas for criteria for emergence of stochastic resonance during polymer translocation. We show that no stochastic resonance is possible if the free energy barrier for polymer translocation is purely entropic in nature. The polymer chain exhibits stochastic resonance only in the presence of an energy threshold in terms of polymer-pore interactions. Once stochastic resonance is feasible, the chain entropy controls the optimal synchronization conditions significantly.

  8. Polymer optoelectronic structures for retinal prosthesis.

    PubMed

    Gautam, Vini; Narayan, K S

    2014-01-01

    This commentary highlights the effectiveness of optoelectronic properties of polymer semiconductors based on recent results emerging from our laboratory, where these materials are explored as artificial receptors for interfacing with the visual systems. Organic semiconductors based polymer layers in contact with physiological media exhibit interesting photophysical features, which mimic certain natural photoreceptors, including those in the retina. The availability of such optoelectronic materials opens up a gateway to utilize these structures as neuronal interfaces for stimulating retinal ganglion cells. In a recently reported work entitled "A polymer optoelectronic interface provides visual cues to a blind retina," we utilized a specific configuration of a polymer semiconductor device structure to elicit neuronal activity in a blind retina upon photoexcitation. The elicited neuronal signals were found to have several features that followed the optoelectronic response of the polymer film. More importantly, the polymer-induced retinal response resembled the natural response of the retina to photoexcitation. These observations open up a promising material alternative for artificial retina applications.

  9. The persistence length of adsorbed dendronized polymers.

    PubMed

    Grebikova, Lucie; Kozhuharov, Svilen; Maroni, Plinio; Mikhaylov, Andrey; Dietler, Giovanni; Schlüter, A Dieter; Ullner, Magnus; Borkovec, Michal

    2016-07-21

    The persistence length of cationic dendronized polymers adsorbed onto oppositely charged substrates was studied by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and quantitative image analysis. One can find that a decrease in the ionic strength leads to an increase of the persistence length, but the nature of the substrate and of the generation of the side dendrons influence the persistence length substantially. The strongest effects as the ionic strength is being changed are observed for the fourth generation polymer adsorbed on mica, which is a hydrophilic and highly charged substrate. However, the observed dependence on the ionic strength is much weaker than the one predicted by the Odijk, Skolnik, and Fixman (OSF) theory for semi-flexible chains. Low-generation polymers show a variation with the ionic strength that resembles the one observed for simple and flexible polyelectrolytes in solution. For high-generation polymers, this dependence is weaker. Similar dependencies are found for silica and gold substrates. The observed behavior is probably caused by different extents of screening of the charged groups, which is modified by the polymer generation, and to a lesser extent, the nature of the substrate. For highly ordered pyrolytic graphite (HOPG), which is a hydrophobic and weakly charged substrate, the electrostatic contribution to the persistence length is much smaller. In the latter case, we suspect that specific interactions between the polymer and the substrate also play an important role. PMID:27353115

  10. Nano polypeptide particles reinforced polymer composite fibers.

    PubMed

    Li, Jiashen; Li, Yi; Zhang, Jing; Li, Gang; Liu, Xuan; Li, Zhi; Liu, Xuqing; Han, Yanxia; Zhao, Zheng

    2015-02-25

    Because of the intensified competition of land resources for growing food and natural textile fibers, there is an urgent need to reuse and recycle the consumed/wasted natural fibers as regenerated green materials. Although polypeptide was extracted from wool by alkaline hydrolysis, the size of the polypeptide fragments could be reduced to nanoscale. The wool polypeptide particles were fragile and could be crushed down to nano size again and dispersed evenly among polymer matrix under melt extrusion condition. The nano polypeptide particles could reinforce antiultraviolet capability, moisture regain, and mechanical properties of the polymer-polypeptide composite fibers.

  11. Structural and Electrical Study of Conducting Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaktawat, Vinodini; Dixit, Manasvi; Saxena, N. S.; Sharma, Kananbala

    2010-06-01

    Pure and oxalic acid doped conducting polymers (polyaniline and polypyrrole) were chemically synthesized using ammonium persulfate (APS) as an oxidant. These samples were characterized through Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), which provides information about the surface topography of polymers. I-V characteristics have been recorded at room temperature as well as in the temperature range from 313 K to 463 K. So obtained characteristic curves were found to be linear. Temperature dependence of conductivity suggests a semiconducting nature in polyaniline samples with increase in temperature, whereas oxalic acid doped polypyrrole sample suggests a transition from semiconducting to metallic nature with the increase of temperature.

  12. LITERATURE SURVEY ON ISOTOPIC ABUNDANCE RATIO MEASUREMENTS - 2001-2005

    SciTech Connect

    HOLDEN, N.E.

    2005-08-13

    Along with my usual weekly review of the published literature for new nuclear data, I also search for new candidates for best measurements of isotopic abundances from a single source. Most of the published articles, that I previously had found in the Research Library at the Brookhaven Lab, have already been sent to the members of the Atomic Weights Commission, by either Michael Berglund or Thomas Walczyk. In the last few days, I checked the published literature for any other articles in the areas of natural variations in isotopic abundance ratios, measurements of isotopic abundance ratios on samples of extra-terrestrial material and isotopic abundance ratio measurements performed using ICPMS instruments. Hopefully this information will be of interest to members of the Commission, the sub-committee on isotopic abundance measurements (SIAM), members of the former sub-committee on natural isotopic fractionation (SNIF), the sub-committee on extra-terrestrial isotope ratios (SETIR), the RTCE Task Group and the Guidelines Task Group, who are dealing with ICPMS and TIMS comparisons. In the following report, I categorize the publications in one of four areas. Measurements performed using either positive or negative ions with Thermal Ionization Mass Spectrometer, TIMS, instruments; measurements performed on Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometer, ICPMS, instruments; measurements of natural variations of the isotopic abundance ratios; and finally measurements on extra-terrestrial samples with instrumentation of either type. There is overlap in these areas. I selected out variations and ET results first and then categorized the rest of the papers by TIMS and ICPMS.

  13. Nanoporous polymer electrolyte

    DOEpatents

    Elliott, Brian; Nguyen, Vinh

    2012-04-24

    A nanoporous polymer electrolyte and methods for making the polymer electrolyte are disclosed. The polymer electrolyte comprises a crosslinked self-assembly of a polymerizable salt surfactant, wherein the crosslinked self-assembly includes nanopores and wherein the crosslinked self-assembly has a conductivity of at least 1.0.times.10.sup.-6 S/cm at 25.degree. C. The method of making a polymer electrolyte comprises providing a polymerizable salt surfactant. The method further comprises crosslinking the polymerizable salt surfactant to form a nanoporous polymer electrolyte.

  14. Toxicity of pyrolysis gases from synthetic polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hilado, C. J.; Soriano, J. A.; Kosola, K. L.; Kourtides, D. A.; Parker, J. A.

    1977-01-01

    The screening test method was used to investigate toxicity in polyethylene, polystyrene, polymethyl methacrylate, polyaryl sulfone, polyether sulfone, polyphenyl sulfone, and polyphenylene sulfide. Changing from a rising temperature program to a fixed temperature program resulted on shorter times to animal responses. This effect was attributed in part to more rapid generation of toxicants. The toxicants from the sulfur containing polymers appeared to act more rapidly than the toxicants from the other polymers. It was not known whether this effect was due primarily to difference in concentration or in the nature of the toxicants. The carbon monoxide concentration found did not account for the results observed with the sulfur containing polymers. Polyphenyl sulfone appeared to exhibit the least toxicity among the sulfur containing polymers evaluated under these test conditions.

  15. Applications of polymers in dentifrices and mouthrinses.

    PubMed

    Gaffar, Abdul; Hunter, Catherine M; Mirajkar, Yelloji-Rao K

    2002-01-01

    This review highlights the specific applications of polymers in oral hygiene products. Specific examples are provided to show how polymers can be used to improve retention and release of active agents for therapeutic effects in an oral environment where the residence time of the actives is low, owing to the continuous flow of saliva which washes them away. Polymers are uniquely suited as active therapy for intraoral applications and as replacement agents for augmenting the macromolecule's deficiency (saliva) caused in the aging mouth. It is expected that the next generation of products and delivery systems will be based on polymers derived from natural sources and will have functions such as enamel replacement agents for caries control, adhesion macromolecules for gingival tissue attachment to teeth, saliva mucin replacement, and the delivery of new active agents using biopolymers. PMID:12116724

  16. Applications of polymers in dentifrices and mouthrinses.

    PubMed

    Gaffar, Abdul; Hunter, Catherine M; Mirajkar, Yelloji-Rao K

    2002-01-01

    This review highlights the specific applications of polymers in oral hygiene products. Specific examples are provided to show how polymers can be used to improve retention and release of active agents for therapeutic effects in an oral environment where the residence time of the actives is low, owing to the continuous flow of saliva which washes them away. Polymers are uniquely suited as active therapy for intraoral applications and as replacement agents for augmenting the macromolecule's deficiency (saliva) caused in the aging mouth. It is expected that the next generation of products and delivery systems will be based on polymers derived from natural sources and will have functions such as enamel replacement agents for caries control, adhesion macromolecules for gingival tissue attachment to teeth, saliva mucin replacement, and the delivery of new active agents using biopolymers.

  17. High performance polymer development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, Paul M.

    1991-01-01

    The term high performance as applied to polymers is generally associated with polymers that operate at high temperatures. High performance is used to describe polymers that perform at temperatures of 177 C or higher. In addition to temperature, other factors obviously influence the performance of polymers such as thermal cycling, stress level, and environmental effects. Some recent developments at NASA Langley in polyimides, poly(arylene ethers), and acetylenic terminated materials are discussed. The high performance/high temperature polymers discussed are representative of the type of work underway at NASA Langley Research Center. Further improvement in these materials as well as the development of new polymers will provide technology to help meet NASA future needs in high performance/high temperature applications. In addition, because of the combination of properties offered by many of these polymers, they should find use in many other applications.

  18. Internal dissipation of a polymer.

    PubMed

    Deutsch, J M

    2010-06-01

    The dynamics of flexible polymer molecules are often assumed to be governed by hydrodynamics of the solvent. However there is considerable evidence that internal dissipation of a polymer contributes as well. Here we investigate the dynamics of a single chain in the absence of solvent to characterize the nature of this internal friction. We model the chains as freely hinged but with localized bond angles and threefold symmetric dihedral angles. We show that the damping is close but not identical to Kelvin damping, which depends on the first temporal and second spatial derivative of monomer position. With no internal potential between monomers, the magnitude of the damping is small for long wavelengths and weakly damped oscillatory time dependent behavior is seen for a large range of spatial modes. When the size of the internal potential is increased, such oscillations persist, but the damping becomes larger. However underdamped motion is present even with quite strong dihedral barriers for long enough wavelengths. PMID:20866433

  19. Use of agricultural byproducts as fillers in polymer composites

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A recent trend in polymer research is to use natural renewable materials as "green" raw materials for industrial applications. One of the applications pursued by the authors is to produce polymeric composites consisting of a polymer and an agricultural byproduct or waste. In this way, there is no c...

  20. Abundance and characteristics of microplastics in beach sediments: Insights into microplastic accumulation in northern Gulf of Mexico estuaries.

    PubMed

    Wessel, Caitlin C; Lockridge, Grant R; Battiste, David; Cebrian, Just

    2016-08-15

    Microplastics (plastic debris smaller than 5mm) represent a growing concern worldwide due to increasing amounts of discarded trash. We investigated microplastic debris on sandy shorelines at seven locations in a northern Gulf of Mexico estuary (Mobile Bay, AL) during the summer of 2014. Microplastics were ubiquitous throughout the area studied at concentrations 66-253× larger than reported for the open ocean. The polymers polypropylene and polyethylene were most abundant, with polystyrene, polyester and aliphatic polyamide also present but in lower quantities. There was a gradient in microplastic abundance, with locations more directly exposed to marine currents and tides having higher microplastic abundance and diversity, as well as a higher contribution by denser polymers (e.g. polyester). These results indicate that microplastic accumulation on shorelines in the northern Gulf of Mexico may be a serious concern, and suggest that exposure to inputs from the Gulf is an important determinant of microplastic abundance. PMID:27287867

  1. Abundance and characteristics of microplastics in beach sediments: Insights into microplastic accumulation in northern Gulf of Mexico estuaries.

    PubMed

    Wessel, Caitlin C; Lockridge, Grant R; Battiste, David; Cebrian, Just

    2016-08-15

    Microplastics (plastic debris smaller than 5mm) represent a growing concern worldwide due to increasing amounts of discarded trash. We investigated microplastic debris on sandy shorelines at seven locations in a northern Gulf of Mexico estuary (Mobile Bay, AL) during the summer of 2014. Microplastics were ubiquitous throughout the area studied at concentrations 66-253× larger than reported for the open ocean. The polymers polypropylene and polyethylene were most abundant, with polystyrene, polyester and aliphatic polyamide also present but in lower quantities. There was a gradient in microplastic abundance, with locations more directly exposed to marine currents and tides having higher microplastic abundance and diversity, as well as a higher contribution by denser polymers (e.g. polyester). These results indicate that microplastic accumulation on shorelines in the northern Gulf of Mexico may be a serious concern, and suggest that exposure to inputs from the Gulf is an important determinant of microplastic abundance.

  2. EDITORIAL: Electroactive polymer materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Kim, Kwang J.; Ryeol Choi, Hyouk; Madden, John D. W.

    2007-04-01

    Imitating nature's mechanisms offers enormous potential for the improvement of our lives and the tools we use. This field of the study and imitation of, and inspiration from, nature's methods, designs and processes is known as biomimetics. Artificial muscles, i.e. electroactive polymers (EAPs), are one of the emerging technologies enabling biomimetics. Polymers that can be stimulated to change shape or size have been known for many years. The activation mechanisms of such polymers include electrical, chemical, pneumatic, optical and magnetic. Electrical excitation is one of the most attractive stimulators able to produce elastic deformation in polymers. The convenience and practicality of electrical stimulation and the continual improvement in capabilities make EAP materials some of the most attractive among activatable polymers (Bar-Cohen Y (ed) 2004 Electroactive Polymer (EAP) Actuators as Artificial Muscles—Reality, Potential and Challenges 2nd edn, vol PM136 (Bellingham, WA: SPIE Press) pp 1-765). As polymers, EAP materials offer many appealing characteristics that include low weight, fracture tolerance and pliability. Furthermore, they can be configured into almost any conceivable shape and their properties can be tailored to suit a broad range of requirements. These capabilities and the significant change of shape or size under electrical stimulation while being able to endure many cycles of actuation are inspiring many potential possibilities for EAP materials among engineers and scientists in many different disciplines. Practitioners in biomimetics are particularly excited about these materials since they can be used to mimic the movements of animals and insects. Potentially, mechanisms actuated by EAPs will enable engineers to create devices previously imaginable only in science fiction. For many years EAP materials received relatively little attention due to their poor actuation capability and the small number of available materials. In the last fifteen

  3. Report of the Polymer Core Course Committee: Polymer Principles in the Undergraduate Physical Chemistry Course, Part 1.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Journal of Chemical Education, 1985

    1985-01-01

    Demonstrates, with a set of definitive examples, how polymer principles can be introduced into the first undergraduate physical chemistry course in a very natural way. The intent is to encourage introduction of polymer-related material into conventional physical chemistry courses without sacrificing any rigor associated with such courses. (JN)

  4. Metaproteomics reveals abundant transposase expression in mutualistic endosymbionts

    SciTech Connect

    Kleiner, Manuel; Young, Jacque C; Shah, Manesh B; Verberkmoes, Nathan C; Dubilier, Nicole

    2013-01-01

    Transposases, enzymes that catalyze the movement of mobile genetic elements, are the most abundant genes in nature. While many bacteria encode an abundance of transposases in their genomes, the current paradigm is that transposase gene expression is tightly regulated and generally low due to its severe mutagenic effects. In the current study, we detected the highest number of transposase proteins ever reported in bacteria, in symbionts of the gutless marine worm Olavius algarvensis using metaproteomics. At least 26 different transposases from 12 different families were detected and genomic and proteomic analyses suggest many of these are active. This high expression of transposases indicates that the mechanisms for their tight regulation have been disabled or destroyed. Based on recent studies on other symbionts and pathogens that showed high transposase transcription, we speculate that abundant transposase expression might be common in symbionts and pathogens.

  5. Ideal linear-chain polymers with fixed angular momentum.

    PubMed

    Brunner, Matthew; Deutsch, J M

    2011-07-01

    The statistical mechanics of a linear noninteracting polymer chain with a large number of monomers is considered with fixed angular momentum. The radius of gyration for a linear polymer is derived exactly by functional integration. This result is then compared to simulations done with a large number of noninteracting rigid links at fixed angular momentum. The simulation agrees with the theory up to finite-size corrections. The simulations are also used to investigate the anisotropic nature of a spinning polymer. We find universal scaling of the polymer size along the direction of the angular momentum, as a function of rescaled angular momentum.

  6. High-efficiency all-polymer solar cells based on a pair of crystalline low-bandgap polymers.

    PubMed

    Mu, Cheng; Liu, Peng; Ma, Wei; Jiang, Kui; Zhao, Jingbo; Zhang, Kai; Chen, Zhihua; Wei, Zhanhua; Yi, Ya; Wang, Jiannong; Yang, Shihe; Huang, Fei; Facchetti, Antonio; Ade, Harald; Yan, He

    2014-11-12

    All-polymer solar cells based on a pair of crystalline low-bandgap polymers (NT and N2200) are demonstrated to achieve a high short-circuit current density of 11.5 mA cm-2 and a power conversion efficiency of up to 5.0% under the standard AM1.5G spectrum with one sun intensity. The high performance of these NT:N2200-based cells can be attributed to the low optical bandgaps of the polymers and the reasonably high and balanced electron and hole mobilities of the NT:N2200 blends due to the crystalline nature of the two polymers.

  7. Polymers with pendant ferrocenes.

    PubMed

    Pietschnig, Rudolf

    2016-10-01

    The tailoring of smart material properties is one of the challenges in materials science. The unique features of polymers with pendant ferrocene units, either as ferrocenyl or ferrocenediyl groups, provide electrochemical, electronic, optoelectronic, catalytic, and biological properties with potential for applications as smart materials. The possibility to tune or to switch the properties of such materials relies mostly on the redox activity of the ferrocene/ferricenium couple. By switching the redox state of ferrocenyl units - separately or in a cooperative fashion - charge, polarity, color (UV-vis range) and hydrophilicity of polymers, polymer functionalized surfaces and polymer derived networks (sol-gel) may be controlled. In turn, also the vicinity of such polymers influences the redox behavior of the pendant ferrocenyl units allowing for sensing applications by using polymer bound enzymes as triggering units. In this review the focus is set mainly on the literature of the past five years.

  8. CO2 -Responsive polymers.

    PubMed

    Lin, Shaojian; Theato, Patrick

    2013-07-25

    This Review focuses on the recent progress in the area of CO2 -responsive polymers and provides detailed descriptions of these existing examples. CO2 -responsive polymers can be categorized into three types based on their CO2 -responsive groups: amidine, amine, and carboxyl groups. Compared with traditional temperature, pH, or light stimuli-responsive polymers, CO2 -responsive polymers provide the advantage to use CO2 as a "green" trigger as well as to capture CO2 directly from air. In addition, the current challenges of CO2 -responsive polymers are discussed and the different solution methods are compared. Noteworthy, CO2 -responsive polymers are considered to have a prosperous future in various scientific areas.

  9. Lithium Abundance in Planet Search Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myles, Justin; Yale Exoplanets

    2016-01-01

    Since most lithium in the universe is primordial and is destroyed in stars, lithium abundance can be used as a stellar age indicator. Some research seems to show that planet formation may also affect lithium abundance in exoplanet host stars (EHS). However, small and heterogenous samples have made both of these phenomena unclear. Further study of lithium abundance in EHS is needed to better understand possible physical roles of lithium in planet formation theory. We use a large homogenous sample with accurate stellar parameters on which we will use equivalent width analysis to determine precise lithium abundances. From these abundance values we determine an age vs. abundance relation. Additionally, we aim to explore correlation between lithium abundance and planet formation.

  10. Touching polymer chains by organic field-effect transistors

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Wei; Dong, Huanli; Wang, Zhigang; Hu, Wenping

    2014-01-01

    Organic field-effect transistors (OFETs) are used to directly “touch” the movement and dynamics of polymer chains, and then determine Tg. As a molecular-level probe, the conducting channel of OFETs exhibits several unique advantages: 1) it directly detects the motion and dynamics of polymer chain at Tg; 2) it allows the measurement of size effects in ultrathin polymer films (even down to 6 nm), which bridges the gap in understanding effects between surface and interface. This facile and reliable determination of Tg of polymer films and the understanding of polymer chain dynamics guide a new prospect for OFETs besides their applications in organic electronics and casting new light on the fundamental understanding of the nature of polymer chain dynamics. PMID:25227159

  11. Oceanic heterotrophic dinoflagellates: distribution, abundance, and role as microzooplankton

    SciTech Connect

    Lessard, E.J.

    1984-01-01

    The primary objectives of this thesis were to determine the distribution and abundance of heterotrophic dinoflagellates across the Gulf Stream system off Cape Hatteras and to assess the potential grazing impact of these microheterotrophs in plankton communities. A list of species encountered in this study and their trophic status based on epifluorescence is presented, as well as observations on the presence of external or internal symbionts. The abundance of heterotrophic dinoflagellates across the Gulf Stream region off Cape Hatteras was determined from bimonthly net tow samples over a year and from whole water samples in March. Their average abundance was twice that of net ciliates in the net plankton and ten times that of ciliates in the nanoplankton. An isotope technique was developed to measure grazing rates of individual dinoflaggellates and other microzooplankton which cannot be separated in natural populations on the basis of size. /sup 3/H-thymidine and /sup 14/C-bicarbonate were used to label natural heterotrophic (bacteria and bacterivores) and autotrophic (phytoplankton and herbivores) food, respectively. Estimates of the grazing impact of heterotrophic kinoflagellates relative to other groups of heterotrophs on phytoplankton and bacteria were made by combining abundance data and clearance rates. Such calculations suggested that heterotrophic dinoflagellates may be an important group of grazers in oceanic waters.

  12. High Performance Polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Venumbaka, Sreenivasulu R.; Cassidy, Patrick E.

    2003-01-01

    This report summarizes results from research on high performance polymers. The research areas proposed in this report include: 1) Effort to improve the synthesis and to understand and replicate the dielectric behavior of 6HC17-PEK; 2) Continue preparation and evaluation of flexible, low dielectric silicon- and fluorine- containing polymers with improved toughness; and 3) Synthesis and characterization of high performance polymers containing the spirodilactam moiety.

  13. Thermally conductive polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Byrd, N. R.; Jenkins, R. K.; Lister, J. L. (Inventor)

    1971-01-01

    A thermally conductive polymer is provided having physical and chemical properties suited to use as a medium for potting electrical components. The polymer is prepared from hydroquinone, phenol, and formaldehyde, by conventional procedures employed for the preparation of phenol-formaldehyde resins. While the proportions of the monomers can be varied, a preferred polymer is formed from the monomers in a 1:1:2.4 molar or ratio of hydroquinone:phenol:formaldehyde.

  14. Bio-inspired carbon nanotube-polymer composite yarns with hydrogen bond-mediated lateral interactions.

    PubMed

    Beese, Allison M; Sarkar, Sourangsu; Nair, Arun; Naraghi, Mohammad; An, Zhi; Moravsky, Alexander; Loutfy, Raouf O; Buehler, Markus J; Nguyen, SonBinh T; Espinosa, Horacio D

    2013-04-23

    Polymer composite yarns containing a high loading of double-walled carbon nanotubes (DWNTs) have been developed in which the inherent acrylate-based organic coating on the surface of the DWNT bundles interacts strongly with poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) through an extensive hydrogen-bond network. This design takes advantage of a toughening mechanism seen in spider silk and collagen, which contain an abundance of hydrogen bonds that can break and reform, allowing for large deformation while maintaining structural stability. Similar to that observed in natural materials, unfolding of the polymeric matrix at large deformations increases ductility without sacrificing stiffness. As the PVA content in the composite increases, the stiffness and energy to failure of the composite also increases up to an optimal point, beyond which mechanical performance in tension decreases. Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations confirm this trend, showing the dominance of nonproductive hydrogen bonding between PVA molecules at high PVA contents, which lubricates the interface between DWNTs. PMID:23548065

  15. Molecular Abundances in CRL 618

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pardo, Juan R.; Cernicharo, José

    2007-01-01

    In previous works we have modeled the different gas regions of the proto-planetary nebula CRL 618 by studying the large number of lines from the cyanopolyynes detected in a millimeter-wave line survey of this object. In this work we retrieve the rotational temperatures (Tr) and abundance ratios R with respect to HC3N (used as reference) for all molecular species detected in the survey by running grids of models in the (R,Tr) space to find the minimum of a weighted χ2 defined for this analysis. This provides the best knowledge to date of the (polar) molecular composition of CRL 618 thanks to the uniform calibration of the whole survey and the large number of lines available from each species, allowing comparisons with predictions made by chemical models of C-rich post-AGB objects. A significantly lower value of the 12C/13C ratio has been revealed in the gas closest to central star with respect to the colder and outer envelope. It can be due to 13C-rich material, produced in a late CNO cycling occurred in the central star, being currently injected into this inner gas envelope.

  16. Sequence Programmable Peptoid Polymers for Diverse Materials Applications.

    PubMed

    Knight, Abigail S; Zhou, Effie Y; Francis, Matthew B; Zuckermann, Ronald N

    2015-10-14

    Polymer sequence programmability is required for the diverse structures and complex properties that are achieved by native biological polymers, but efforts towards controlling the sequence of synthetic polymers are, by comparison, still in their infancy. Traditional polymers provide robust and chemically diverse materials, but synthetic control over their monomer sequences is limited. The modular and step-wise synthesis of peptoid polymers, on the other hand, allows for precise control over the monomer sequences, affording opportunities for these chains to fold into well-defined nanostructures. Hundreds of different side chains have been incorporated into peptoid polymers using efficient reaction chemistry, allowing for a seemingly infinite variety of possible synthetically accessible polymer sequences. Combinatorial discovery techniques have allowed the identification of functional polymers within large libraries of peptoids, and newly developed theoretical modeling tools specifically adapted for peptoids enable the future design of polymers with desired functions. Work towards controlling the three-dimensional structure of peptoids, from the conformation of the amide bond to the formation of protein-like tertiary structure, has and will continue to enable the construction of tunable and innovative nanomaterials that bridge the gap between natural and synthetic polymers.

  17. Predictive aging of polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cuddihy, Edward F. (Inventor); Willis, Paul B. (Inventor)

    1989-01-01

    A method of predicting aging of polymers operates by heating a polymer in the outdoors to an elevated temperature until a change of property is induced. The test is conducted at a plurality of temperatures to establish a linear Arrhenius plot which is extrapolated to predict the induction period for failure of the polymer at ambient temperature. An Outdoor Photo Thermal Aging Reactor (OPTAR) is also described including a heatable platen for receiving a sheet of polymer, means to heat the platen, and switching means such as a photoelectric switch for turning off the heater during dark periods.

  18. Predictive aging of polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cuddihy, Edward F. (Inventor); Willis, Paul B. (Inventor)

    1990-01-01

    A method of predicting aging of polymers operates by heating a polymer in the outdoors to an elevated temperature until a change of property is induced. The test is conducted at a plurality of temperatures to establish a linear Arrhenius plot which is extrapolated to predict the induction period for failure of the polymer at ambient temperature. An Outdoor Photo Thermal Aging Reactor (OPTAR) is also described including a heatable platen for receiving a sheet of polymer, means to heat the platen and switching means such as a photoelectric switch for turning off the heater during dark periods.

  19. Optically responsive supramolecular polymer glasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balkenende, Diederik W. R.; Monnier, Christophe A.; Fiore, Gina L.; Weder, Christoph

    2016-03-01

    The reversible and dynamic nature of non-covalent interactions between the constituting building blocks renders many supramolecular polymers stimuli-responsive. This was previously exploited to create thermally and optically healable polymers, but it proved challenging to achieve high stiffness and good healability. Here we present a glass-forming supramolecular material that is based on a trifunctional low-molecular-weight monomer ((UPyU)3TMP). Carrying three ureido-4-pyrimidinone (UPy) groups, (UPyU)3TMP forms a dynamic supramolecular polymer network, whose properties are governed by its cross-linked architecture and the large content of the binding motif. This design promotes the formation of a disordered glass, which, in spite of the low molecular weight of the building block, displays typical polymeric behaviour. The material exhibits a high stiffness and offers excellent coating and adhesive properties. On account of reversible dissociation and the formation of a low-viscosity liquid upon irradiation with ultraviolet light, rapid optical healing as well as (de)bonding on demand is possible.

  20. Optically responsive supramolecular polymer glasses.

    PubMed

    Balkenende, Diederik W R; Monnier, Christophe A; Fiore, Gina L; Weder, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    The reversible and dynamic nature of non-covalent interactions between the constituting building blocks renders many supramolecular polymers stimuli-responsive. This was previously exploited to create thermally and optically healable polymers, but it proved challenging to achieve high stiffness and good healability. Here we present a glass-forming supramolecular material that is based on a trifunctional low-molecular-weight monomer ((UPyU)3TMP). Carrying three ureido-4-pyrimidinone (UPy) groups, (UPyU)3TMP forms a dynamic supramolecular polymer network, whose properties are governed by its cross-linked architecture and the large content of the binding motif. This design promotes the formation of a disordered glass, which, in spite of the low molecular weight of the building block, displays typical polymeric behaviour. The material exhibits a high stiffness and offers excellent coating and adhesive properties. On account of reversible dissociation and the formation of a low-viscosity liquid upon irradiation with ultraviolet light, rapid optical healing as well as (de)bonding on demand is possible. PMID:26983805

  1. Optically responsive supramolecular polymer glasses

    PubMed Central

    Balkenende, Diederik W. R.; Monnier, Christophe A.; Fiore, Gina L.; Weder, Christoph

    2016-01-01

    The reversible and dynamic nature of non-covalent interactions between the constituting building blocks renders many supramolecular polymers stimuli-responsive. This was previously exploited to create thermally and optically healable polymers, but it proved challenging to achieve high stiffness and good healability. Here we present a glass-forming supramolecular material that is based on a trifunctional low-molecular-weight monomer ((UPyU)3TMP). Carrying three ureido-4-pyrimidinone (UPy) groups, (UPyU)3TMP forms a dynamic supramolecular polymer network, whose properties are governed by its cross-linked architecture and the large content of the binding motif. This design promotes the formation of a disordered glass, which, in spite of the low molecular weight of the building block, displays typical polymeric behaviour. The material exhibits a high stiffness and offers excellent coating and adhesive properties. On account of reversible dissociation and the formation of a low-viscosity liquid upon irradiation with ultraviolet light, rapid optical healing as well as (de)bonding on demand is possible. PMID:26983805

  2. Hybrid polymer-inorganic nanocomposites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomogailo, Anatolii D.

    2000-01-01

    Approaches to the preparation of organic-inorganic nanocomposites are considered from a unified viewpoint for the first time. The major problems in the development of this new line of research in materials technology, which has arisen on the border of the science of polymers, colloid chemistry and physical chemistry of the ultradisperse state, are discussed. The main methods for the formation of composite materials and polymer-inorganic cross-linked hybrids with interpenetrating networks are analysed. Primary attention is given to sol-gel procedures for their preparation, including template processes, which occur under conditions of strict stereochemical orientation of reactants, intercalation of monomers and polymers into porous and layered matrices and their intracrystalline and post-intercalation transformations. Methods for the synthesis and properties of metallopolymeric polymolecular Langmuir-Blodgett films, which are peculiar supramolecular ensembles incorporating nanosized metal-containing particles, are discussed. The generality of the processes of formation of organic-inorganic nanocomposites in living and nonliving natural objects is demonstrated and the major fields of application of nanocomposites are considered. The bibliography includes 566 references.

  3. Reinforcement and degradation mechanisms in polymer/inorganic nanocomposites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bogdanova, Irina Rifkatovna

    This project accomplished the following goals: preparation of polymer/alumina nanocomposites using a single-screw extrusion approach, a systematic investigation of interfacial interactions, the mechanisms for reinforcement, and the thermal degradation and flame retardant mechanisms in polymer nanocomposites. In this work it was found that the stereochemistry of polymer macromolecules and the shapes of nanoparticles are extremely important in determining the interfacial interactions between them. Understanding of the nature of these interactions can result in a comprehensive understanding of reinforcement mechanisms in polymer nanocomposites. It was found that aromatic polymers such as polycarbonate and polystyrene have stronger interfacial interactions with needle or whisker-shaped nanoparticles than with spherical-shaped nanoparticles, while linear aliphatic polymers such as polymethylmethacrylate showed strong interactions with spherical nanoparticles. Other factors affecting the strength of interfacial interactions such as size, surface modification and concentration of nanoparticles were also studied. The thermal stability of polymer nanocomposites was studied to unravel the thermal degradation mechanisms. It was found that the chemical nature of nanoparticles plays a significant role in the thermal decomposition of polymer nanocomposites. For instance, SEM studies of polymer nanocomposites chars revealed that alumina nanoparticles moved to the surface of nanocomposites, while silica nanoparticles stayed in the body of the material, which enhances char formation. The mechanisms for the flammability in polymer/alumina nanocomposites were found to depend on the viscosity of the melt flow of nanocomposites. FT-IR, MS, and surface free energy characterization for modified alumina surfaces were done. The compatibility of polymer molecules and nanoparticles was studied on the basis of surface free energy. It was shown that modification of the alumina surface with

  4. Do top-down or bottom-up forces determine Stephanitis pyrioides abundance in urban landscapes?

    PubMed

    Shrewsbury, Paula M; Raupp, Michael J

    2006-02-01

    This study examined the influence of habitat structural complexity on the collective effects of top-down and bottom-up forces on herbivore abundance in urban landscapes. The persistence and varying complexity of urban landscapes set them apart from ephemeral agroecosystems and natural habitats where the majority of studies have been conducted. Using surveys and manipulative experiments. We explicitly tested the effect of natural enemies (enemies hypothesis), host plant quality, and herbivore movement on the abundance of the specialist insect herbivore, Stephanitis pyrioides, in landscapes of varying structural complexity. This herbivore was extremely abundant in simple landscapes and rare in complex ones. Natural enemies were the major force influencing abundance of S. pyrioides across habitat types. Generalist predators, particularly the spider Anyphaena celer, were more abundant in complex landscapes. Predator abundance was related to greater abundance of alternative prey in those landscapes. Stephanitis pyrioides survival was lower in complex habitats when exposed to endemic natural enemy populations. Laboratory feeding trials confirmed the more abundant predators consumed S. pyrioides. Host plant quality was not a strong force influencing patterns of S. pyrioides abundance. When predators were excluded, adult S. pyrioides survival was greater on azaleas grown in complex habitats, in opposition to the observed pattern of abundance. Similarly, complexity did not affect S. pyrioides immigration and emigration rates. The complexity of urban landscapes affects the strength of top-down forces on herbivorous insect populations by influencing alternative prey and generalist predator abundance. It is possible that habitats can be manipulated to promote the suppressive effects of generalist predators.

  5. Triclosan antimicrobial polymers

    PubMed Central

    Petersen, Richard C.

    2016-01-01

    Triclosan antimicrobial molecular fluctuating energies of nonbonding electron pairs for the oxygen atom by ether bond rotations are reviewed with conformational computational chemistry analyses. Subsequent understanding of triclosan alternating ether bond rotations is able to help explain several material properties in Polymer Science. Unique bond rotation entanglements between triclosan and the polymer chains increase both the mechanical properties of polymer toughness and strength that are enhanced even better through secondary bonding relationships. Further, polymer blend compatibilization is considered due to similar molecular relationships and polarities. With compatibilization of triclosan in polymers a more uniform stability for nonpolar triclosan in the polymer solid state is retained by the antimicrobial for extremely low release with minimum solubility into aqueous solution. As a result, triclosan is projected for long extended lifetimes as an antimicrobial polymer additive. Further, triclosan rapid alternating ether bond rotations disrupt secondary bonding between chain monomers in the resin state to reduce viscosity and enhance polymer blending. Thus, triclosan is considered for a polymer additive with multiple properties to be an antimicrobial with additional benefits as a nonpolar toughening agent and a hydrophobic wetting agent. The triclosan material relationships with alternating ether bond rotations are described through a complete different form of medium by comparisons with known antimicrobial properties that upset bacterial cell membranes through rapid fluctuating mechanomolecular energies. Also, triclosan bond entanglements with secondary bonding can produce structural defects in weak bacterial lipid membranes requiring pliability that can then interfere with cell division. Regarding applications with polymers, triclosan can be incorporated by mixing into a resin system before cure, melt mixed with thermoplastic polymers that set on cooling

  6. High Abundance of Ions in Cosmic Ices

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gudipati, Murthy S.; Allamandola, Louis J.; Fonda, Mark (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Water-rich, mixed molecular ices and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are common throughout interstellar molecular clouds and the Solar System. Vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) irradiation and particle bombardment of these abiotic ices produces complex organic species, including important biogenic molecules such as amino acids and functionalized PAHs which may have played a role in the origin of life. This ability of such water-rich, oxygen dominated ices to promote production of complex organic species is surprising and points to an important, unusual, but previously overlooked mechanism at play within the ice. Here we report the nature of this mechanism using electronic spectroscopy. VUV-irradiation of PAH/H2O ices leads to an unprecedented and efficient (greater than 70 %) conversion of the neutral PAHs to their cation form (PAH+). Further, these H2O/PAH+ ices are stabile at temperatures below 50 K, a temperature domain common throughout interstellar clouds and the Solar System. Between 50 and 125 K they react to form the complex organics. In view of this, we conclude that charged PAHs and other molecular ions should be common and abundant in many cosmic ices. The chemical, spectroscopic and physical properties of these ion-rich ices can be of fundamental importance for objects as diverse as comets, planets, and molecular clouds and may account for several poorly understood phenomena associated with each of these object classes.

  7. Water sorption and diffusion in glassy polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Eric Mikel

    Water sorption and diffusion in glassy polymers is important in many fields, including drug delivery, desalination, energy storage and delivery, and packaging. Accurately measuring and understanding the underlying transport mechanisms of water in these glassy polymers is often complex due to both the nonequilibrium state of the polymer and the self-associating nature of water (e.g., hydrogen bonding). In this work, water sorption and diffusion in a number of glassy polymers were measured using gravimetric and spectroscopic techniques, including quartz spring microbalance, quartz crystal microbalance, and in situ time-resolved Fourier transform infrared-attenuated total reflectance (FTIR-ATR) spectroscopy. Non-Fickian diffusion was observed in all polymers studied, indicated by an initial stage of water uptake, followed by a second stage of continuous, gradual uptake of water at later experimental times. These phenomena were attributed to diffusion driven by a concentration gradient, as well as diffusion driven by slow polymer relaxation resulting in additional water ingress over time. In order to gain additional insight into these phenomena, which are a product of nonequilibrium state of the polymers, diffusion-relaxation models were developed and employed to determine the time scales for both diffusion and polymer relaxation, where the ratio of these values (Deborah number) confirmed the observed non-Fickian water diffusion. In addition, the solubility of water in these polymers was predicted using two nonequilibrium thermodynamic models: the nonequilibrium lattice fluid (NELF) model and the nonequilibrium statistical associating fluid theory (NE-SAFT), where excellent agreement between the NE-SAFT predictions and experimental data was obtained over the entire water vapor activity range explored. Furthermore, the states of water were analyzed using the Zimm-Lundberg clustering theory, as well as in situ FTIR-ATR spectroscopy, where the latter technique provides a

  8. Polymers that Conduct Electricity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edelson, Edward

    1983-01-01

    Although polymers are regarded as electrical insulators, it was discovered that they can be made to conduct electricity. This discovery has opened vast new practical and theoretical areas for exploration by physicists and chemists. Research studies with these conducting polymers and charge-transfer salts as well as possible applications are…

  9. Melons are Branched Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gurau, Razvan; Ryan, James P.

    2014-11-01

    Melonic graphs constitute the family of graphs arising at leading order in the 1/N expansion of tensor models. They were shown to lead to a continuum phase, reminiscent of branched polymers. We show here that they are in fact precisely branched polymers, that is, they possess Hausdorff dimension 2 and spectral dimension 4/3.

  10. Polymer based tunneling sensor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cui, Tianhong (Inventor); Wang, Jing (Inventor); Zhao, Yongjun (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    A process for fabricating a polymer based circuit by the following steps. A mold of a design is formed through a lithography process. The design is transferred to a polymer substrate through a hot embossing process. A metal layer is then deposited over at least part of said design and at least one electrical lead is connected to said metal layer.

  11. Physical Properties of Polymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mark, James; Ngai, Kia; Graessley, William; Mandelkern, Leo; Samulski, Edward; Koenig, Jack; Wignall, George

    2004-04-01

    This thoroughly revised and updated third edition is written by seven well-known authorities in the polymer science community. Each author contributes a chapter which reflects his own interests and expertise in the physical states and associated properties of polymers. Second Edition published by the American Chemical Society Hb (1993): 0-841-22505-2

  12. Abundance and Distribution Characteristics of Microplastics in Surface Seawaters of the Incheon/Kyeonggi Coastal Region.

    PubMed

    Chae, Doo-Hyeon; Kim, In-Sung; Kim, Seung-Kyu; Song, Young Kyoung; Shim, Won Joon

    2015-10-01

    Microplastics in marine environments are of emerging concern due to their widespread distribution, their ingestion by various marine organisms, and their roles as a source and transfer vector of toxic chemicals. However, our understanding of their abundance and distribution characteristics in surface seawater (SSW) remains limited. We investigated microplastics in the surface microlayer (SML) and the SSW at 12 stations near-shore and offshore of the Korean west coast, Incheon/Kyeonggi region. Variation between stations, sampling media, and sampling methods were compared based on abundances, size distribution, and composition profiles of microsized synthetic polymer particles. The abundance of microplastics was greater in the SML (152,688 ± 92,384 particles/m(3)) than in SSW and showed a significant difference based on the sampling method for SSWs collected using a hand net (1602 ± 1274 particles/m(3)) and a zooplankton trawl net (0.19 ± 0.14 particles/m(3)). Ship paint particles (mostly alkyd resin polymer) accounted for the majority of microplastics detected in both SML and SSWs, and increased levels were observed around the voyage routes of large vessels. This indicates that polymers with marine-based origins become an important contributor to microplastics in coastal SSWs of this coastal region.

  13. Rapid Polymer Sequencer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stolc, Viktor (Inventor); Brock, Mathew W. (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    Method and system for rapid and accurate determination of each of a sequence of unknown polymer components, such as nucleic acid components. A self-assembling monolayer of a selected substance is optionally provided on an interior surface of a pipette tip, and the interior surface is immersed in a selected liquid. A selected electrical field is impressed in a longitudinal or transverse direction at the tip, a polymer sequence is passed through the tip, and a change in an electrical current signal is measured as each polymer component passes through the tip. Each measured change in electrical current signals is compared with a database of reference signals, with each reference signal identified with a polymer component, to identify the unknown polymer component. The tip preferably has a pore inner diameter of no more than about 40 nm and is prepared by heating and pulling a very small section of a glass tubing.

  14. Polymer Crystallization under Confinement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Floudas, George

    Recent efforts indicated that polymer crystallization under confinement can be substantially different from the bulk. This can have important technological applications for the design of polymeric nanofibers with tunable mechanical strength, processability and optical clarity. However, the question of how, why and when polymers crystallize under confinement is not fully answered. Important studies of polymer crystallization confined to droplets and within the spherical nanodomains of block copolymers emphasized the interplay between heterogeneous and homogeneous nucleation. Herein we report on recent studies1-5 of polymer crystallization under hard confinement provided by model self-ordered AAO nanopores. Important open questions here are on the type of nucleation (homogeneous vs. heterogeneous), the size of critical nucleus, the crystal orientation and the possibility to control the overall crystallinity. Providing answers to these questions is of technological relevance for the understanding of nanocomposites containing semicrystalline polymers. In collaboration with Y. Suzuki, H. Duran, M. Steinhart, H.-J. Butt.

  15. Modeling semiflexible polymer networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Broedersz, C. P.; MacKintosh, F. C.

    2014-07-01

    This is an overview of theoretical approaches to semiflexible polymers and their networks. Such semiflexible polymers have large bending rigidities that can compete with the entropic tendency of a chain to crumple up into a random coil. Many studies on semiflexible polymers and their assemblies have been motivated by their importance in biology. Indeed, cross-linked networks of semiflexible polymers form a major structural component of tissue and living cells. Reconstituted networks of such biopolymers have emerged as a new class of biological soft matter systems with remarkable material properties, which have spurred many of the theoretical developments discussed here. Starting from the mechanics and dynamics of individual semiflexible polymers, the physics of semiflexible bundles, entangled solutions, and disordered cross-linked networks are reviewed. Finally, recent developments on marginally stable fibrous networks, which exhibit critical behavior similar to other marginal systems such as jammed soft matter, are discussed.

  16. Electroactive polymers for sensing.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tiesheng; Farajollahi, Meisam; Choi, Yeon Sik; Lin, I-Ting; Marshall, Jean E; Thompson, Noel M; Kar-Narayan, Sohini; Madden, John D W; Smoukov, Stoyan K

    2016-08-01

    Electromechanical coupling in electroactive polymers (EAPs) has been widely applied for actuation and is also being increasingly investigated for sensing chemical and mechanical stimuli. EAPs are a unique class of materials, with low-moduli high-strain capabilities and the ability to conform to surfaces of different shapes. These features make them attractive for applications such as wearable sensors and interfacing with soft tissues. Here, we review the major types of EAPs and their sensing mechanisms. These are divided into two classes depending on the main type of charge carrier: ionic EAPs (such as conducting polymers and ionic polymer-metal composites) and electronic EAPs (such as dielectric elastomers, liquid-crystal polymers and piezoelectric polymers). This review is intended to serve as an introduction to the mechanisms of these materials and as a first step in material selection for both researchers and designers of flexible/bendable devices, biocompatible sensors or even robotic tactile sensing units. PMID:27499846

  17. The abundance threshold for plague as a critical percolation phenomenon.

    PubMed

    Davis, S; Trapman, P; Leirs, H; Begon, M; Heesterbeek, J A P

    2008-07-31

    Percolation theory is most commonly associated with the slow flow of liquid through a porous medium, with applications to the physical sciences. Epidemiological applications have been anticipated for disease systems where the host is a plant or volume of soil, and hence is fixed in space. However, no natural examples have been reported. The central question of interest in percolation theory, the possibility of an infinite connected cluster, corresponds in infectious disease to a positive probability of an epidemic. Archived records of plague (infection with Yersinia pestis) in populations of great gerbils (Rhombomys opimus) in Kazakhstan have been used to show that epizootics only occur when more than about 0.33 of the burrow systems built by the host are occupied by family groups. The underlying mechanism for this abundance threshold is unknown. Here we present evidence that it is a percolation threshold, which arises from the difference in scale between the movements that transport infectious fleas between family groups and the vast size of contiguous landscapes colonized by gerbils. Conventional theory predicts that abundance thresholds for the spread of infectious disease arise when transmission between hosts is density dependent such that the basic reproduction number (R(0)) increases with abundance, attaining 1 at the threshold. Percolation thresholds, however, are separate, spatially explicit thresholds that indicate long-range connectivity in a system and do not coincide with R(0) = 1. Abundance thresholds are the theoretical basis for attempts to manage infectious disease by reducing the abundance of susceptibles, including vaccination and the culling of wildlife. This first natural example of a percolation threshold in a disease system invites a re-appraisal of other invasion thresholds, such as those for epidemic viral infections in African lions (Panthera leo), and of other disease systems such as bovine tuberculosis (caused by Mycobacterium bovis) in

  18. Ammonia and nitrogen abundances in comets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wyckoff, Susan

    1990-01-01

    Comets consist of pristine material preserved from an earlier galactic epoch. Determination of the molecular, elemental, and isotopic abundances in the dust and volatile components of comet nuclei produce vital clues to the chemical evolution of both interstellar and solar nebula matter. Here the abundances of nitrogen-containing molecules in comets are considered. The molecular abundances of NH3 in four comets are summarized (Tegler 1990, Wyckoff, Tegler, and Engel, 1990). From an inventory of nitrogen-containing compounds (Wyckoff, Engel, and Tegler 1990, Wyckoff, Engel, Womack, Ferro, Tegler and Peterson, 1990), an estimate of the elemental N abundance is also presented.

  19. Synthesis of Zwitterionic Polymer Particles via Combined Distillation Precipitation Polymerization and Click Chemistry for Highly Efficient Enrichment of Glycopeptide.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jianxi; Yang, Kaiguang; Shao, Wenya; Li, Senwu; Wu, Qi; Zhang, Shen; Qu, Yanyan; Zhang, Lihua; Zhang, Yukui

    2016-08-31

    Because of the low abundance of glycopeptide in natural biological samples, methods for efficient and selective enrichment of glycopeptides play a significant role in mass spectrometry (MS)-based glycoproteomics. In this study, a novel kind of zwitterionic hydrophilic interaction chromatography polymer particles, namely, poly(N,N-methylenebisacrylamide-co-methacrylic acid)@l-Cys (poly(MBAAm-co-MAA)@l-Cys), for the enrichment of glycopeptides was synthesized by a facile and efficient approach that combined distillation precipitation polymerization (DPP) and "thiol-ene" click reaction. In the DPP approach, residual vinyl groups explored outside the core with high density, then the functional ligand cysteine was immobilized onto the surface of core particles by highly efficient thiol-ene click reaction. Taking advantage of the unique structure of poly(MBAAm-co-MAA)@l-Cys, the resulting particles possess remarkable enrichment selectivity for glycopeptides from the tryptic digested human immunoglobulin G. The polymer particles were successfully employed for the analysis of human plasma, and 208 unique glycopeptides corresponding to 121 glycoproteins were reliably identified in triple independent nano-LC-MS/MS runs. The selectivity toward glycopeptides of these particles poly(MBAAm-co-MAA)@l-Cys is ∼2 times than that of the commercial beads. These results demonstrated that these particles had great potential for large-scale glycoproteomics research. Moreover, the strategy with the combination of DPP and thiol-ene click chemistry might be a facile method to produce functional polymer particles for bioenrichment application. PMID:27498760

  20. Abundance of introduced species at home predicts abundance away in herbaceous communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Firn, Jennifer; Moore, Joslin L.; MacDougall, Andrew S.; Borer, Elizabeth T.; Seabloom, Eric W.; HilleRisLambers, Janneke; Harpole, W. Stanley; Cleland, Elsa E.; Brown, Cynthia S.; Knops, Johannes M.H.; Prober, Suzanne M.; Pyke, David A.; Farrell, Kelly A.; Bakker, John D.; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Adler, Peter B.; Collins, Scott L.; D'Antonio, Carla M.; Crawley, Michael J.; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Melbourne, Brett A.; Hautier, Yann; Morgan, John W.; Leakey, Andrew D.B.; Kay, Adam; McCulley, Rebecca; Davies, Kendi F.; Stevens, Carly J.; Chu, Cheng-Jin; Holl, Karen D.; Klein, Julia A.; Fay, Phillip A.; Hagenah, Nicole; Kirkman, Kevin P.; Buckley, Yvonne M.

    2011-01-01

    Many ecosystems worldwide are dominated by introduced plant species, leading to loss of biodiversity and ecosystem function. A common but rarely tested assumption is that these plants are more abundant in introduced vs. native communities, because ecological or evolutionary-based shifts in populations underlie invasion success. Here, data for 26 herbaceous species at 39 sites, within eight countries, revealed that species abundances were similar at native (home) and introduced (away) sites - grass species were generally abundant home and away, while forbs were low in abundance, but more abundant at home. Sites with six or more of these species had similar community abundance hierarchies, suggesting that suites of introduced species are assembling similarly on different continents. Overall, we found that substantial changes to populations are not necessarily a pre-condition for invasion success and that increases in species abundance are unusual. Instead, abundance at home predicts abundance away, a potentially useful additional criterion for biosecurity programmes.