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Sample records for activity significantly enhanced

  1. Significant Enhancement of Water Splitting Activity of N-Carbon Electrocatalyst by Trace Level Co Doping.

    PubMed

    Bayatsarmadi, Bita; Zheng, Yao; Tang, Youhong; Jaroniec, Mietek; Qiao, Shi-Zhang

    2016-07-01

    Replacement of precious metal electrocatalysts with highly active and cost efficient alternatives for complete water splitting at low voltage has attracted a growing attention in recent years. Here, this study reports a carbon-based composite co-doped with nitrogen and trace amount of metallic cobalt (1 at%) as a bifunctional electrocatalyst for water splitting at low overpotential and high current density. An excellent electrochemical activity of the newly developed electrocatalyst originates from its graphitic nanostructure and highly active Co-Nx sites. In the case of carefully optimized sample of this electrocatalyst, 10 mA cm(-2) current density can be achieved for two half reactions in alkaline solutions-hydrogen evolution reaction and oxygen evolution reaction-at low overpotentials of 220 and 350 mV, respectively, which are smaller than those previously reported for nonprecious metal and metal-free counterparts. Based on the spectroscopic and electrochemical investigations, the newly identified Co-Nx sites in the carbon framework are responsible for high electrocatalytic activity of the Co,N-doped carbon. This study indicates that a trace level of the introduced Co into N-doped carbon can significantly enhance its electrocatalytic activity toward water splitting. PMID:27246288

  2. Significant Enhancement of Water Splitting Activity of N-Carbon Electrocatalyst by Trace Level Co Doping.

    PubMed

    Bayatsarmadi, Bita; Zheng, Yao; Tang, Youhong; Jaroniec, Mietek; Qiao, Shi-Zhang

    2016-07-01

    Replacement of precious metal electrocatalysts with highly active and cost efficient alternatives for complete water splitting at low voltage has attracted a growing attention in recent years. Here, this study reports a carbon-based composite co-doped with nitrogen and trace amount of metallic cobalt (1 at%) as a bifunctional electrocatalyst for water splitting at low overpotential and high current density. An excellent electrochemical activity of the newly developed electrocatalyst originates from its graphitic nanostructure and highly active Co-Nx sites. In the case of carefully optimized sample of this electrocatalyst, 10 mA cm(-2) current density can be achieved for two half reactions in alkaline solutions-hydrogen evolution reaction and oxygen evolution reaction-at low overpotentials of 220 and 350 mV, respectively, which are smaller than those previously reported for nonprecious metal and metal-free counterparts. Based on the spectroscopic and electrochemical investigations, the newly identified Co-Nx sites in the carbon framework are responsible for high electrocatalytic activity of the Co,N-doped carbon. This study indicates that a trace level of the introduced Co into N-doped carbon can significantly enhance its electrocatalytic activity toward water splitting.

  3. Significantly Enhanced Visible Light Photoelectrochemical Activity in TiO₂ Nanowire Arrays by Nitrogen Implantation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Gongming; Xiao, Xiangheng; Li, Wenqing; Lin, Zhaoyang; Zhao, Zipeng; Chen, Chi; Wang, Chen; Li, Yongjia; Huang, Xiaoqing; Miao, Ling; Jiang, Changzhong; Huang, Yu; Duan, Xiangfeng

    2015-07-01

    Titanium oxide (TiO2) represents one of most widely studied materials for photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting but is severely limited by its poor efficiency in the visible light range. Here, we report a significant enhancement of visible light photoactivity in nitrogen-implanted TiO2 (N-TiO2) nanowire arrays. Our systematic studies show that a post-implantation thermal annealing treatment can selectively enrich the substitutional nitrogen dopants, which is essential for activating the nitrogen implanted TiO2 to achieve greatly enhanced visible light photoactivity. An incident photon to electron conversion efficiency (IPCE) of ∼10% is achieved at 450 nm in N-TiO2 without any other cocatalyst, far exceeding that in pristine TiO2 nanowires (∼0.2%). The integration of oxygen evolution reaction (OER) cocatalyst with N-TiO2 can further increase the IPCE at 450 nm to ∼17% and deliver an unprecedented overall photocurrent density of 1.9 mA/cm(2), by integrating the IPCE spectrum with standard AM 1.5G solar spectrum. Systematic photoelectrochemical and electrochemical studies demonstrated that the enhanced PEC performance can be attributed to the significantly improved visible light absorption and more efficient charge separation. Our studies demonstrate the implantation approach can be used to reliably dope TiO2 to achieve the best performed N-TiO2 photoelectrodes to date and may be extended to fundamentally modify other semiconductor materials for PEC water splitting.

  4. Protopanaxadiol, an Active Ginseng Metabolite, Significantly Enhances the Effects of Fluorouracil on Colon Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chong-Zhi; Zhang, Zhiyu; Wan, Jin-Yi; Zhang, Chun-Feng; Anderson, Samantha; He, Xin; Yu, Chunhao; He, Tong-Chuan; Qi, Lian-Wen; Yuan, Chun-Su

    2015-01-01

    In this study, we evaluated the effects of protopanaxadiol (PPD), a gut microbiome induced ginseng metabolite, in increasing the anticancer effects of a chemotherapeutic agent fluorouracil (5-FU) on colorectal cancer. An in vitro HCT-116 colorectal cancer cell proliferation test was conducted to observe the effects of PPD, 5-FU and their co-administration and the related mechanisms of action. Then, an in vivo xenografted athymic mouse model was used to confirm the in vitro data. Our results showed that the human gut microbiome converted ginsenoside compound K to PPD as a metabolite. PPD and 5-FU significantly inhibited HCT-116 cell proliferation in a concentration-dependent manner (both p < 0.01), and the effects of 5-FU were very significantly enhanced by combined treatment with PPD (p < 0.01). Cell cycle evaluation demonstrated that 5-FU markedly induced the cancer cell S phase arrest, while PPD increased arrest in G1 phase. Compared to the control, 5-FU and PPD increased apoptosis, and their co-administration significantly increased the number of apoptotic cells (p < 0.01). Using bioluminescence imaging, in vivo data revealed that 5-FU significantly reduced the tumor growth up to Day 20 (p < 0.05). PPD and 5-FU co-administration very significantly reduced the tumor size in a dose-related manner (p < 0.01 compared to the 5-FU alone). The quantification of the tumor size and weight changes for 43 days supported the in vivo imaging data. Our results demonstrated that the co-administration of PPD and 5-FU significantly inhibited the tumor growth, indicating that PPD significantly enhanced the anticancer action of 5-FU, a commonly used chemotherapeutic agent. PPD may have a clinical value in 5-FU’s cancer therapeutics. PMID:25625815

  5. Appropriate Fe (II) Addition Significantly Enhances Anaerobic Ammonium Oxidation (Anammox) Activity through Improving the Bacterial Growth Rate

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yiwen; Ni, Bing-Jie

    2015-01-01

    The application of anaerobic ammonium oxidation (Anammox) process is often limited by the slow growth rate of Anammox bacteria. As the essential substrate element that required for culturing Anammox sludge, Fe (II) is expected to affect Anammox bacterial growth. This work systematically studied the effects of Fe (II) addition on Anammox activity based on the kinetic analysis of specific growth rate using data from batch tests with an enriched Anammox sludge at different dosing levels. Results clearly demonstrated that appropriate Fe (II) dosing (i.e., 0.09 mM) significantly enhanced the specific Anammox growth rate up to 0.172 d−1 compared to 0.118 d−1 at regular Fe (II) level (0.03 mM). The relationship between Fe (II) concentration and specific Anammox growth rate was found to be well described by typical substrate inhibition kinetics, which was integrated into currently well-established Anammox model to describe the enhanced Anammox growth with Fe (II) addition. The validity of the integrated Anammox model was verified using long-term experimental data from three independent Anammox reactors with different Fe (II) dosing levels. This Fe (II)-based approach could be potentially implemented to enhance the process rate for possible mainstream application of Anammox technology, in order for an energy autarchic wastewater treatment. PMID:25644239

  6. Appropriate Fe (II) Addition Significantly Enhances Anaerobic Ammonium Oxidation (Anammox) Activity through Improving the Bacterial Growth Rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Yiwen; Ni, Bing-Jie

    2015-02-01

    The application of anaerobic ammonium oxidation (Anammox) process is often limited by the slow growth rate of Anammox bacteria. As the essential substrate element that required for culturing Anammox sludge, Fe (II) is expected to affect Anammox bacterial growth. This work systematically studied the effects of Fe (II) addition on Anammox activity based on the kinetic analysis of specific growth rate using data from batch tests with an enriched Anammox sludge at different dosing levels. Results clearly demonstrated that appropriate Fe (II) dosing (i.e., 0.09 mM) significantly enhanced the specific Anammox growth rate up to 0.172 d-1 compared to 0.118 d-1 at regular Fe (II) level (0.03 mM). The relationship between Fe (II) concentration and specific Anammox growth rate was found to be well described by typical substrate inhibition kinetics, which was integrated into currently well-established Anammox model to describe the enhanced Anammox growth with Fe (II) addition. The validity of the integrated Anammox model was verified using long-term experimental data from three independent Anammox reactors with different Fe (II) dosing levels. This Fe (II)-based approach could be potentially implemented to enhance the process rate for possible mainstream application of Anammox technology, in order for an energy autarchic wastewater treatment.

  7. Appropriate Fe (II) addition significantly enhances anaerobic ammonium oxidation (Anammox) activity through improving the bacterial growth rate.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yiwen; Ni, Bing-Jie

    2015-01-01

    The application of anaerobic ammonium oxidation (Anammox) process is often limited by the slow growth rate of Anammox bacteria. As the essential substrate element that required for culturing Anammox sludge, Fe (II) is expected to affect Anammox bacterial growth. This work systematically studied the effects of Fe (II) addition on Anammox activity based on the kinetic analysis of specific growth rate using data from batch tests with an enriched Anammox sludge at different dosing levels. Results clearly demonstrated that appropriate Fe (II) dosing (i.e., 0.09 mM) significantly enhanced the specific Anammox growth rate up to 0.172 d(-1) compared to 0.118 d(-1) at regular Fe (II) level (0.03 mM). The relationship between Fe (II) concentration and specific Anammox growth rate was found to be well described by typical substrate inhibition kinetics, which was integrated into currently well-established Anammox model to describe the enhanced Anammox growth with Fe (II) addition. The validity of the integrated Anammox model was verified using long-term experimental data from three independent Anammox reactors with different Fe (II) dosing levels. This Fe (II)-based approach could be potentially implemented to enhance the process rate for possible mainstream application of Anammox technology, in order for an energy autarchic wastewater treatment. PMID:25644239

  8. Zero valent iron significantly enhances methane production from waste activated sludge by improving biochemical methane potential rather than hydrolysis rate.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yiwen; Wang, Qilin; Zhang, Yaobin; Ni, Bing-Jie

    2015-02-05

    Anaerobic digestion has been widely applied for waste activated sludge (WAS) treatment. However, methane production from anaerobic digestion of WAS is usually limited by the slow hydrolysis rate and/or poor biochemical methane potential of WAS. This work systematically studied the effects of three different types of zero valent iron (i.e., iron powder, clean scrap and rusty scrap) on methane production from WAS in anaerobic digestion, by using both experimental and mathematical approaches. The results demonstrated that both the clean and the rusty iron scrap were more effective than the iron powder for improving methane production from WAS. Model-based analysis showed that ZVI addition significantly enhanced methane production from WAS through improving the biochemical methane potential of WAS rather than its hydrolysis rate. Economic analysis indicated that the ZVI-based technology for enhancing methane production from WAS is economically attractive, particularly considering that iron scrap can be freely acquired from industrial waste. Based on these results, the ZVI-based anaerobic digestion process of this work could be easily integrated with the conventional chemical phosphorus removal process in wastewater treatment plant to form a cost-effective and environment-friendly approach, enabling maximum resource recovery/reuse while achieving enhanced methane production in wastewater treatment system.

  9. Zero Valent Iron Significantly Enhances Methane Production from Waste Activated Sludge by Improving Biochemical Methane Potential Rather Than Hydrolysis Rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Yiwen; Wang, Qilin; Zhang, Yaobin; Ni, Bing-Jie

    2015-02-01

    Anaerobic digestion has been widely applied for waste activated sludge (WAS) treatment. However, methane production from anaerobic digestion of WAS is usually limited by the slow hydrolysis rate and/or poor biochemical methane potential of WAS. This work systematically studied the effects of three different types of zero valent iron (i.e., iron powder, clean scrap and rusty scrap) on methane production from WAS in anaerobic digestion, by using both experimental and mathematical approaches. The results demonstrated that both the clean and the rusty iron scrap were more effective than the iron powder for improving methane production from WAS. Model-based analysis showed that ZVI addition significantly enhanced methane production from WAS through improving the biochemical methane potential of WAS rather than its hydrolysis rate. Economic analysis indicated that the ZVI-based technology for enhancing methane production from WAS is economically attractive, particularly considering that iron scrap can be freely acquired from industrial waste. Based on these results, the ZVI-based anaerobic digestion process of this work could be easily integrated with the conventional chemical phosphorus removal process in wastewater treatment plant to form a cost-effective and environment-friendly approach, enabling maximum resource recovery/reuse while achieving enhanced methane production in wastewater treatment system.

  10. A nanotherapy strategy significantly enhances anticryptosporidial activity of an inhibitor of bifunctional thymidylate synthase-dihydrofolate reductase from Cryptosporidium.

    PubMed

    Mukerjee, Anindita; Iyidogan, Pinar; Castellanos-Gonzalez, Alejandro; Cisneros, José A; Czyzyk, Daniel; Ranjan, Amalendu Prakash; Jorgensen, William L; White, A Clinton; Vishwanatha, Jamboor K; Anderson, Karen S

    2015-01-01

    Cryptosporidiosis, a gastrointestinal disease caused by protozoans of the genus Cryptosporidium, is a common cause of diarrheal diseases and often fatal in immunocompromised individuals. Bifunctional thymidylate synthase-dihydrofolate reductase (TS-DHFR) from Cryptosporidium hominis (C. hominis) has been a molecular target for inhibitor design. C. hominis TS-DHFR inhibitors with nM potency at a biochemical level have been developed however drug delivery to achieve comparable antiparasitic activity in Cryptosporidium infected cell culture has been a major hurdle for designing effective therapies. Previous mechanistic and structural studies have identified compound 906 as a nM C. hominis TS-DHFR inhibitor in vitro, having μM antiparasitic activity in cell culture. In this work, proof of concept studies are presented using a nanotherapy approach to improve drug delivery and the antiparasitic activity of 906 in cell culture. We utilized PLGA nanoparticles that were loaded with 906 (NP-906) and conjugated with antibodies to the Cryptosporidium specific protein, CP2, on the nanoparticle surface in order to specifically target the parasite. Our results indicate that CP2 labeled NP-906 (CP2-NP-906) reduces the level of parasites by 200-fold in cell culture, while NP-906 resulted in 4.4-fold decrease. Moreover, the anticryptosporidial potency of 906 improved 15 to 78-fold confirming the utility of the antibody conjugated nanoparticles as an effective drug delivery strategy.

  11. Powerful Complex Immunoadjuvant Based on Synergistic Effect of Combined TLR4 and NOD2 Activation Significantly Enhances Magnitude of Humoral and Cellular Adaptive Immune Responses.

    PubMed

    Tukhvatulin, Amir I; Dzharullaeva, Alina S; Tukhvatulina, Natalia M; Shcheblyakov, Dmitry V; Shmarov, Maxim M; Dolzhikova, Inna V; Stanhope-Baker, Patricia; Naroditsky, Boris S; Gudkov, Andrei V; Logunov, Denis Y; Gintsburg, Alexander L

    2016-01-01

    Binding of pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) by pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) activates innate immune responses and contributes to development of adaptive immunity. Simultaneous stimulation of different types of PRRs can have synergistic immunostimulatory effects resulting in enhanced production of molecules that mediate innate immunity such as inflammatory cytokines, antimicrobial peptides, etc. Here, we evaluated the impact of combined stimulation of PRRs from different families on adaptive immunity by generating alum-based vaccine formulations with ovalbumin as a model antigen and the Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) agonist MPLA and the Nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein 2 (NOD2) agonist MDP adsorbed individually or together on the alum-ovalbumin particles. Multiple in vitro and in vivo readouts of immune system activation all showed that while individual PRR agonists increased the immunogenicity of vaccines compared to alum alone, the combination of both PRR agonists was significantly more effective. Combined stimulation of TLR4 and NOD2 results in a stronger and broader transcriptional response in THP-1 cells compared to individual PRR stimulation. Immunostimulatory composition containing both PRR agonists (MPLA and MDP) in the context of the alum-based ovalbumin vaccine also enhanced uptake of vaccine particles by bone marrow derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) and promoted maturation (up-regulation of expression of CD80, CD86, MHCII) and activation (production of cytokines) of BMDCs. Finally, immunization of mice with vaccine particles containing both PRR agonists resulted in enhanced cellular immunity as indicated by increased proliferation and activation (IFN-γ production) of splenic CD4+ and CD8+ T cells following in vitro restimulation with ovalbumin and enhanced humoral immunity as indicated by higher titers of ovalbumin-specific IgG antibodies. These results indicate that combined stimulation of TLR4 and NOD2

  12. Conjugation of 10 kDa Linear PEG onto Trastuzumab Fab' Is Sufficient to Significantly Enhance Lymphatic Exposure while Preserving in Vitro Biological Activity.

    PubMed

    Chan, Linda J; Ascher, David B; Yadav, Rajbharan; Bulitta, Jürgen B; Williams, Charlotte C; Porter, Christopher J H; Landersdorfer, Cornelia B; Kaminskas, Lisa M

    2016-04-01

    The lymphatic system is a major conduit by which many diseases spread and proliferate. There is therefore increasing interest in promoting better lymphatic drug targeting. Further, antibody fragments such as Fabs have several advantages over full length monoclonal antibodies but are subject to rapid plasma clearance, which can limit the lymphatic exposure and activity of Fabs against lymph-resident diseases. This study therefore explored ideal PEGylation strategies to maximize biological activity and lymphatic exposure using trastuzumab Fab' as a model. Specifically, the Fab' was conjugated with single linear 10 or 40 kDa PEG chains at the hinge region. PEGylation led to a 3-4-fold reduction in binding affinity to HER2, but antiproliferative activity against HER2-expressing BT474 cells was preserved. Lymphatic pharmacokinetics were then examined in thoracic lymph duct cannulated rats after intravenous and subcutaneous dosing at 2 mg/kg, and the data were evaluated via population pharmacokinetic modeling. The Fab' displayed limited lymphatic exposure, but conjugation of 10 kDa PEG improved exposure by approximately 11- and 5-fold after intravenous (15% dose collected in thoracic lymph over 30 h) and subcutaneous (9%) administration, respectively. Increasing the molecular weight of the PEG to 40 kDa, however, had no significant impact on lymphatic exposure after intravenous (14%) administration and only doubled lymphatic exposure after subcutaneous administration (18%) when compared to 10 kDa PEG-Fab'. The data therefore suggests that minimal PEGylation has the potential to enhance the exposure and activity of Fab's against lymph-resident diseases, while no significant benefit is achieved with very large PEGs.

  13. Role of the HSP90-associated cochaperone p23 in enhancing activity of the androgen receptor and significance for prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Reebye, Vikash; Querol Cano, Laia; Lavery, Derek N; Brooke, Greg N; Powell, Sue M; Chotai, Deepa; Walker, Marjorie M; Whitaker, Hayley C; Wait, Robin; Hurst, Helen C; Bevan, Charlotte L

    2012-10-01

    Prostate tumor growth initially depends on androgens, which act via the androgen receptor (AR). Despite androgen ablation therapy, tumors eventually progress to a castrate-resistant stage in which the AR remains active. The mechanisms are poorly understood but it may be that changes in levels or activity of AR coregulators affect trafficking and activation of the receptor. A key stage in AR signaling occurs in the cytoplasm, where unliganded receptor is associated with the heat shock protein (HSP)90 foldosome complex. p23, a key component of this complex, is best characterized as a cochaperone for HSP90 but also has HSP90-independent activity and has been reported as having differential effects on the activity of different steroid receptors. Here we report that p23 increases activity of the AR, and this appears to involve steps both in the cytoplasm (increasing ligand-binding capacity, possibly via direct interaction with AR) and the nucleus (enhancing AR occupancy at target promoters). We show, for the first time, that AR and p23 can interact, perhaps directly, when HSP90 is not present in the same complex. The effects of p23 on AR activity are at least partly HSP90 independent because a mutant form of p23, unable to bind HSP90, nevertheless increases AR activity. In human prostate tumors, nuclear p23 was higher in malignant prostate cells compared with benign/normal cells, supporting the utility of p23 as a therapeutic target in prostate cancer.

  14. Tea enhances insulin activity.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Richard A; Polansky, Marilyn M

    2002-11-20

    The most widely known health benefits of tea relate to the polyphenols as the principal active ingredients in protection against oxidative damage and in antibacterial, antiviral, anticarcinogenic, and antimutagenic activities, but polyphenols in tea may also increase insulin activity. The objective of this study was to determine the insulin-enhancing properties of tea and its components. Tea, as normally consumed, was shown to increase insulin activity >15-fold in vitro in an epididymal fat cell assay. Black, green, and oolong teas but not herbal teas, which are not teas in the traditional sense because they do not contain leaves of Camellia senensis, were all shown to increase insulin activity. High-performance liquid chromatography fractionation of tea extracts utilizing a Waters SymmetryPrep C18 column showed that the majority of the insulin-potentiating activity for green and oolong teas was due to epigallocatechin gallate. For black tea, the activity was present in several regions of the chromatogram corresponding to, in addition to epigallocatechin gallate, tannins, theaflavins, and other undefined compounds. Several known compounds found in tea were shown to enhance insulin with the greatest activity due to epigallocatechin gallate followed by epicatechin gallate, tannins, and theaflavins. Caffeine, catechin, and epicatechin displayed insignificant insulin-enhancing activities. Addition of lemon to the tea did not affect the insulin-potentiating activity. Addition of 5 g of 2% milk per cup decreased the insulin-potentiating activity one-third, and addition of 50 g of milk per cup decreased the insulin-potentiating activity approximately 90%. Nondairy creamers and soy milk also decreased the insulin-enhancing activity. These data demonstrate that tea contains in vitro insulin-enhancing activity and the predominant active ingredient is epigallocatechin gallate. PMID:12428980

  15. Reducing Human-Tsetse Contact Significantly Enhances the Efficacy of Sleeping Sickness Active Screening Campaigns: A Promising Result in the Context of Elimination

    PubMed Central

    Courtin, Fabrice; Camara, Mamadou; Rayaisse, Jean-Baptiste; Kagbadouno, Moise; Dama, Emilie; Camara, Oumou; Traoré, Ibrahima S.; Rouamba, Jérémi; Peylhard, Moana; Somda, Martin B.; Leno, Mamadou; Lehane, Mike J.; Torr, Steve J.; Solano, Philippe; Jamonneau, Vincent; Bucheton, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Background Control of gambiense sleeping sickness, a neglected tropical disease targeted for elimination by 2020, relies mainly on mass screening of populations at risk and treatment of cases. This strategy is however challenged by the existence of undetected reservoirs of parasites that contribute to the maintenance of transmission. In this study, performed in the Boffa disease focus of Guinea, we evaluated the value of adding vector control to medical surveys and measured its impact on disease burden. Methods The focus was divided into two parts (screen and treat in the western part; screen and treat plus vector control in the eastern part) separated by the Rio Pongo river. Population census and baseline entomological data were collected from the entire focus at the beginning of the study and insecticide impregnated targets were deployed on the eastern bank only. Medical surveys were performed in both areas in 2012 and 2013. Findings In the vector control area, there was an 80% decrease in tsetse density, resulting in a significant decrease of human tsetse contacts, and a decrease of disease prevalence (from 0.3% to 0.1%; p=0.01), and an almost nil incidence of new infections (<0.1%). In contrast, incidence was 10 times higher in the area without vector control (>1%, p<0.0001) with a disease prevalence increasing slightly (from 0.5 to 0.7%, p=0.34). Interpretation Combining medical and vector control was decisive in reducing T. b. gambiense transmission and in speeding up progress towards elimination. Similar strategies could be applied in other foci. PMID:26267667

  16. Enhanced NIF neutron activation diagnostics

    SciTech Connect

    Yeamans, C. B.; Bleuel, D. L.; Bernstein, L. A.

    2012-10-15

    The NIF neutron activation diagnostic suite relies on removable activation samples, leading to operational inefficiencies and a fundamental lower limit on the half-life of the activated product that can be observed. A neutron diagnostic system measuring activation of permanently installed samples could remove these limitations and significantly enhance overall neutron diagnostic capabilities. The physics and engineering aspects of two proposed systems are considered: one measuring the {sup 89}Zr/{sup 89m}Zr isomer ratio in the existing Zr activation medium and the other using potassium zirconate as the activation medium. Both proposed systems could improve the signal-to-noise ratio of the current system by at least a factor of 5 and would allow independent measurement of fusion core velocity and fuel areal density.

  17. Enhanced NIF neutron activation diagnostics.

    PubMed

    Yeamans, C B; Bleuel, D L; Bernstein, L A

    2012-10-01

    The NIF neutron activation diagnostic suite relies on removable activation samples, leading to operational inefficiencies and a fundamental lower limit on the half-life of the activated product that can be observed. A neutron diagnostic system measuring activation of permanently installed samples could remove these limitations and significantly enhance overall neutron diagnostic capabilities. The physics and engineering aspects of two proposed systems are considered: one measuring the (89)Zr/(89 m)Zr isomer ratio in the existing Zr activation medium and the other using potassium zirconate as the activation medium. Both proposed systems could improve the signal-to-noise ratio of the current system by at least a factor of 5 and would allow independent measurement of fusion core velocity and fuel areal density.

  18. Enhanced NIF neutron activation diagnosticsa)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeamans, C. B.; Bleuel, D. L.; Bernstein, L. A.

    2012-10-01

    The NIF neutron activation diagnostic suite relies on removable activation samples, leading to operational inefficiencies and a fundamental lower limit on the half-life of the activated product that can be observed. A neutron diagnostic system measuring activation of permanently installed samples could remove these limitations and significantly enhance overall neutron diagnostic capabilities. The physics and engineering aspects of two proposed systems are considered: one measuring the 89Zr/89mZr isomer ratio in the existing Zr activation medium and the other using potassium zirconate as the activation medium. Both proposed systems could improve the signal-to-noise ratio of the current system by at least a factor of 5 and would allow independent measurement of fusion core velocity and fuel areal density.

  19. Significant enhancement of neutralino dark matter annihilation from electroweak bremsstrahlung.

    PubMed

    Bringmann, Torsten; Calore, Francesca

    2014-02-21

    Indirect searches for the cosmological dark matter have become ever more competitive during the past years. Here, we report the first full calculation of leading electroweak corrections to the annihilation rate of supersymmetric neutralino dark matter. We find that these corrections can be huge, partially due to contributions that have been overlooked so far. Our results imply a significantly enhanced discovery potential of this well motivated dark matter candidate with current and upcoming cosmic ray experiments, in particular for gamma rays and models with somewhat small annihilation rates at the tree level.

  20. Significant enhancement of photovoltage in artificially designed perovskite oxide structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Wen-jia; Jin, Kui-juan; Guo, Hai-zhong; He, Xu; He, Meng; Xu, Xiu-lai; Lu, Hui-bin; Yang, Guo-zhen

    2015-03-01

    La0.9Sr0.1MnO3/insulator/SrNb0.007Ti0.993O3 multilayer and La0.9Sr0.1MnO3/SrNb0.007Ti0.993O3/In2O3:SnO2(ITO)/La0.9Sr0.1MnO3/SrNb0.007Ti0.993O3 multilayer structures were designed to enhance the photovoltage. The photovoltages of these two structures under an illumination of 308 nm laser are 410 and 600 mV, respectively. The latter is 20 times larger than that (30 mV) observed in La0.9Sr0.1MnO3/SrNb0.007Ti0.993O3 single junction. The origin of such significant enhancement of photovoltage is discussed in this letter. These results suggest that the photoelectric property of perovskite oxides could be much improved by artificial structure designing. The enhanced photovoltaic effects have potential applications in the ultraviolet photodetection and solar cells.

  1. A Hybrid Actuation System Demonstrating Significantly Enhanced Electromechanical Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Su, Ji; Xu, Tian-Bing; Zhang, Shujun; Shrout, Thomas R.; Zhang, Qiming

    2004-01-01

    A hybrid actuation system (HYBAS) utilizing advantages of a combination of electromechanical responses of an electroactive polymer (EAP), an electrostrictive copolymer, and an electroactive ceramic single crystal, PZN-PT single crystal, has been developed. The system employs the contribution of the actuation elements cooperatively and exhibits a significantly enhanced electromechanical performance compared to the performances of the device made of each constituting material, the electroactive polymer or the ceramic single crystal, individually. The theoretical modeling of the performances of the HYBAS is in good agreement with experimental observation. The consistence between the theoretical modeling and experimental test make the design concept an effective route for the development of high performance actuating devices for many applications. The theoretical modeling, fabrication of the HYBAS and the initial experimental results will be presented and discussed.

  2. Significant Quantum Effects in Hydrogen Activation

    SciTech Connect

    Kyriakou, Georgios; Davidson, Erlend R.; Peng, Guowen; Roling, Luke T.; Singh, Suyash; Boucher, Matthew B.; Marcinkowski, Matthew D.; Mavrikakis, Manos; Michaelides, Angelos; Sykes, E. Charles H.

    2014-03-31

    Dissociation of molecular hydrogen is an important step in a wide variety of chemical, biological, and physical processes. Due to the light mass of hydrogen, it is recognized that quantum effects are often important to its reactivity. However, understanding how quantum effects impact the reactivity of hydrogen is still in its infancy. Here, we examine this issue using a well-defined Pd/Cu(111) alloy that allows the activation of hydrogen and deuterium molecules to be examined at individual Pd atom surface sites over a wide range of temperatures. Experiments comparing the uptake of hydrogen and deuterium as a function of temperature reveal completely different behavior of the two species. The rate of hydrogen activation increases at lower sample temperature, whereas deuterium activation slows as the temperature is lowered. Density functional theory simulations in which quantum nuclear effects are accounted for reveal that tunneling through the dissociation barrier is prevalent for H2 up to 190 K and for D2 up to 140 K. Kinetic Monte Carlo simulations indicate that the effective barrier to H2 dissociation is so low that hydrogen uptake on the surface is limited merely by thermodynamics, whereas the D2 dissociation process is controlled by kinetics. These data illustrate the complexity and inherent quantum nature of this ubiquitous and seemingly simple chemical process. Examining these effects in other systems with a similar range of approaches may uncover temperature regimes where quantum effects can be harnessed, yielding greater control of bond-breaking processes at surfaces and uncovering useful chemistries such as selective bond activation or isotope separation.

  3. Significant Quantum Effects in Hydrogen Activation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Dissociation of molecular hydrogen is an important step in a wide variety of chemical, biological, and physical processes. Due to the light mass of hydrogen, it is recognized that quantum effects are often important to its reactivity. However, understanding how quantum effects impact the reactivity of hydrogen is still in its infancy. Here, we examine this issue using a well-defined Pd/Cu(111) alloy that allows the activation of hydrogen and deuterium molecules to be examined at individual Pd atom surface sites over a wide range of temperatures. Experiments comparing the uptake of hydrogen and deuterium as a function of temperature reveal completely different behavior of the two species. The rate of hydrogen activation increases at lower sample temperature, whereas deuterium activation slows as the temperature is lowered. Density functional theory simulations in which quantum nuclear effects are accounted for reveal that tunneling through the dissociation barrier is prevalent for H2 up to ∼190 K and for D2 up to ∼140 K. Kinetic Monte Carlo simulations indicate that the effective barrier to H2 dissociation is so low that hydrogen uptake on the surface is limited merely by thermodynamics, whereas the D2 dissociation process is controlled by kinetics. These data illustrate the complexity and inherent quantum nature of this ubiquitous and seemingly simple chemical process. Examining these effects in other systems with a similar range of approaches may uncover temperature regimes where quantum effects can be harnessed, yielding greater control of bond-breaking processes at surfaces and uncovering useful chemistries such as selective bond activation or isotope separation. PMID:24684530

  4. Cytochrome bd Displays Significant Quinol Peroxidase Activity

    PubMed Central

    Al-Attar, Sinan; Yu, Yuanjie; Pinkse, Martijn; Hoeser, Jo; Friedrich, Thorsten; Bald, Dirk; de Vries, Simon

    2016-01-01

    Cytochrome bd is a prokaryotic terminal oxidase that catalyses the electrogenic reduction of oxygen to water using ubiquinol as electron donor. Cytochrome bd is a tri-haem integral membrane enzyme carrying a low-spin haem b558, and two high-spin haems: b595 and d. Here we show that besides its oxidase activity, cytochrome bd from Escherichia coli is a genuine quinol peroxidase (QPO) that reduces hydrogen peroxide to water. The highly active and pure enzyme preparation used in this study did not display the catalase activity recently reported for E. coli cytochrome bd. To our knowledge, cytochrome bd is the first membrane-bound quinol peroxidase detected in E. coli. The observation that cytochrome bd is a quinol peroxidase, can provide a biochemical basis for its role in detoxification of hydrogen peroxide and may explain the frequent findings reported in the literature that indicate increased sensitivity to hydrogen peroxide and decreased virulence in mutants that lack the enzyme. PMID:27279363

  5. Phase Behavior and Significantly Enhanced Toughness in Polylactide Graft Copolymers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robertson, Megan; Theryo, Grayce; Jing, Feng; Hillmyer, Marc

    2011-03-01

    Polylactide (PLA), a biodegradable polyester derived from plant sugars, is commercially available and used in a variety of applications ranging from serviceware to resorbable sutures. One limitation to diversifying the applications of the material is its inherent brittleness. Graft copolymers containing PLA arms and a rubbery aliphatic polymer backbone were synthesized by a combination of ring-opening metathesis and ring-opening transesterification polymerizations. The high degree of incompatibility between the arms and backbone resulted in microphase separation of the graft copolymer at increasingly low fractions of the backbone polymer, as evidenced by small-angle x-ray scattering. In graft copolymers with a rubbery content of only 5 wt percent, the tensile strain at break was observed to be as high as twenty times that of neat PLA. Studies are underway to provide insight into the critical polymer molecular parameters for enhanced toughness and the deformation mechanisms.

  6. A designer bleomycin with significantly improved DNA cleavage activity.

    PubMed

    Huang, Sheng-Xiong; Feng, Zhiyang; Wang, Liyan; Galm, Ute; Wendt-Pienkowski, Evelyn; Yang, Dong; Tao, Meifeng; Coughlin, Jane M; Duan, Yanwen; Shen, Ben

    2012-08-15

    The bleomycins (BLMs) are used clinically in combination with a number of other agents for the treatment of several types of tumors, and the BLM, etoposide, and cisplatin treatment regimen cures 90-95% of metastatic testicular cancer patients. BLM-induced pneumonitis is the most feared, dose-limiting side effect of BLM in chemotherapy, which can progress into lung fibrosis and affect up to 46% of the total patient population. There have been continued efforts to develop new BLM analogues in the search for anticancer drugs with better clinical efficacy and lower lung toxicity. We have previously cloned and characterized the biosynthetic gene clusters for BLMs from Streptomyces verticillus ATCC15003, tallysomycins from Streptoalloteichus hindustanus E465-94 ATCC31158, and zorbamycin (ZBM) from Streptomyces flavoviridis SB9001. Comparative analysis of the three biosynthetic machineries provided the molecular basis for the formulation of hypotheses to engineer novel analogues. We now report engineered production of three new analogues, 6'-hydroxy-ZBM, BLM Z, and 6'-deoxy-BLM Z and the evaluation of their DNA cleavage activities as a measurement for their potential anticancer activity. Our findings unveiled: (i) the disaccharide moiety plays an important role in the DNA cleavage activity of BLMs and ZBMs, (ii) the ZBM disaccharide significantly enhances the potency of BLM, and (iii) 6'-deoxy-BLM Z represents the most potent BLM analogue known to date. The fact that 6'-deoxy-BLM Z can be produced in reasonable quantities by microbial fermentation should greatly facilitate follow-up mechanistic and preclinical studies to potentially advance this analogue into a clinical drug.

  7. A Designer Bleomycin with Significantly Improved DNA Cleavage Activity

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Sheng-Xiong; Feng, Zhiyang; Wang, Liyan; Galm, Ute; Wendt-Pienkowski, Evelyn; Yang, Dong; Tao, Meifeng; Coughlin, Jane M; Duan, Yanwen; Shen, Ben

    2012-01-01

    The bleomycins (BLMs) are used clinically in combination with a number of other agents for the treatment of several types of tumors, and the BLM, etoposide, and cisplatin treatment regimen cures 90–95% of metastatic testicular cancer patients. BLM-induced pneumonitis is the most feared, dose-limiting side effect of BLM in chemotherapy, which can progress into lung fibrosis and affect up to 46% of the total patient population. There have been continued efforts to develop new BLM analogues in the search for anticancer drugs with better clinical efficacy and lower lung toxicity. We have previously cloned and characterized the biosynthetic gene clusters for BLMs from Streptomyces verticillus ATCC15003, tallysomycins from Streptoalloteichus hindustanus E465-94 ATCC31158, and zorbamycin (ZBM) from Streptomyces flavoviridis SB9001. Comparative analysis of the three biosynthetic machineries provided the molecular basis for the formulation of hypotheses to engineer novel analogues. We now report engineered production of three new analogues, 6′-hydroxy-ZBM, BLM Z, and 6′-deoxy-BLM Z and the evaluation of their DNA cleavage activities as a measurement for their potential anticancer activity. Our findings unveiled: (i) the disaccharide moiety plays an important role in the DNA cleavage activity of BLMs and ZBMs, (ii) the ZBM disaccharide significantly enhances the potency of BLM, and (iii) 6′-deoxy-BLM Z represents the most potent BLM analogue known to date. The fact that 6′-deoxy-BLM Z can be produced in reasonable quantities by microbial fermentation should greatly facilitate follow-up mechanistic and preclinical studies to potentially advance this analogue into a clinical drug. PMID:22831455

  8. Enhanced multistatic active sonar signal processing.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Kexin; Liang, Junli; Karlsson, Johan; Li, Jian

    2013-07-01

    Multistatic active sonar systems involve the transmission and reception of multiple probing sequences and can achieve significantly enhanced performance of target detection and localization through exploiting spatial diversity. This paper mainly focuses on two signal processing aspects of such systems, namely, enhanced range-Doppler imaging and improved target parameter estimation. The main contributions of this paper are (1) a hybrid dense-sparse method is proposed to generate range-Doppler images with both low sidelobe levels and high accuracy; (2) a generalized K-Means clustering (GKC) method for target association is developed to associate the range measurements from different transmitter-receiver pairs, which is actually a range fitting procedure; (3) the extended invariance principle-based weighted least-squares method is developed for accurate target position and velocity estimation. The effectiveness of the proposed multistatic active sonar signal processing techniques is verified using numerical examples.

  9. Enhancement of deoxyribozyme activity by cationic copolymers.

    PubMed

    Gao, Jueyuan; Shimada, Naohiko; Maruyama, Atsushi

    2015-02-01

    Deoxyribozymes, or DNAzymes, are DNA molecules with enzymatic activity. DNAzymes with ribonuclease activity have various potential applications in biomedical and bioanalytical fields; however, most constructs have limited turnover despite optimization of reaction conditions and DNAzyme structures. A cationic comb-type copolymer accelerates DNA hybridization and strand exchange rates, and we hypothesized that the copolymer would enhance deoxyribozyme activity by promoting turnover. The copolymer did not change DNAzyme activity under single-turnover conditions, suggesting that the copolymer affects neither the folding structure of DNAzyme nor the association of a divalent cation, a catalytic cofactor, to DNAzyme. The copolymer enhanced activity of the evaluated DNAzyme over a wide temperature range under multiple-turnover conditions. The copolymer increased the DNAzyme kcat/KM by fifty-fold at 50 °C, the optimal temperature for the DNAzyme in the absence of the copolymer. The acceleration effect was most significant when the reaction temperature was slightly higher than the melting temperature of the enzyme/substrate complex; acceleration of two orders of magnitude was observed. We concluded that the copolymer accelerated the turnover step without influencing the chemical cleavage step. In contrast to the copolymer, a cationic surfactant, CTAB, strongly inhibited the DNAzyme activity under either single- or multiple-turnover conditions. PMID:26218121

  10. [Diagnostic significance of cancer procoagulant activity in colorectal cancer].

    PubMed

    Kozuszko, B; Skrzydlewski, Z; Famulski, W

    2000-03-01

    This study aimed at evaluating diagnostic significance of cancer procoagulant (CP) activity in the homogenates of colon cancer tissues and in blood serum of patients with this neoplasm. Procoagulant activity, depending of specific cancer procoagulant, has been found in all examined tissues as well as in blood serum of cancer patients. CP activity in homogenates of colon cancer tissues as well as in blood serum of the examined cancer patients has been markedly higher than in the normal subjects. These data indicate that CP activity in the neoplastic tissue homogenates and in blood serum may be of value in the diagnosis of cancer.

  11. Polycarboxylates Enhance Beetle Antifreeze Protein Activity

    PubMed Central

    Amornwittawat, Natapol; Wang, Sen; Duman, John G.; Wen, Xin

    2008-01-01

    Summary Antifreeze proteins (AFPs) lower the noncolligative freezing point of water in the presence of ice below the ice melting point. The temperature difference between the melting point and the noncolligative freezing point is termed thermal hysteresis (TH). The magnitude of the TH depends on the specific activity and the concentration of AFP, and the concentration of enhancers in the solution. Known enhancers are certain low molecular mass molecules and proteins. Here, we investigated a series of polycarboxylates that enhance the TH activity of an AFP from the beetle Dendroides canadensis (DAFP) using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Triethylenetetramine-N,N,N′,N″,N‴,N‴-hexaacetate, the most efficient enhancer identified in this work, can increase the TH of DAFP by nearly 1.5 fold over than that of the published best enhancer, citrate. The Zn2+ coordinated carboxylate results in loss of the enhancement ability of the carboxylate on antifreeze activity. There is not an additional increase in TH when a weaker enhancer is added to a stronger enhancer solution. These observations suggest that the more carboxylate groups per enhancer molecule the better the efficiency of the enhancer and that the freedom of motion of these molecules is necessary for them to serve as enhancers for AFP. The hydroxyl groups in the enhancer molecules can also positively affect their TH enhancement efficiency, though not as strongly as carboxylate groups. Mechanisms are discussed. PMID:18620083

  12. Certain surfactants significantly enhance the activity of antibiotics in the mouse model of MTB and drug resistant MTB infection and effectively remove the bacteria from a pulmonary cavity in human ex-vivo study.

    PubMed

    Risin, Semyon A; Hunter, Robert L; Kobak, Mikhail; Ariel, Boris; Vishnevsky, Boris; Erokhin, Vladislav; Demikhova, Olga; Bocharova, Irina; Stoops, James K

    2014-01-01

    Surfactants have the potential to overcome natural resistance of MTB to antibiotics which is mediated by barriers that impede the penetration of drugs to their targets. A major component of this barrier is trehalose dimycolate (TDM) which surrounds the bacteria with a thick lipid shield. In this study dodecyl maltoside (DDM) was evaluated for this purpose. This surfactant is an excellent cellular permeabilizing agent with associated low toxicity. The administration of the surfactant as an aerosol into the lungs of the infected mice achieved a 5-10 times enhancement of the isoniazid (INH) treatment gauged by the reduction of the colony forming units. This study also established proof of principle that surfactants alone applied as an aerosol can reduce the bacteria count in lungs infected with MTB. The potential of the surfactant in the therapy of human cavitary TB was also investigated using a surgically removed lung from a patient with extreme drug resistant MTB (XDR-TB). A cavity in this lung was flushed with DDM solution ex-vivo. The procedure readily removed the bacteria, excessive amounts of TDM and necrotic tissue from the cavity. These studies demonstrate that DDM can disrupt the layers of TDM and free embedded MTB and, consequently, surfactants have promise as a proficient modality for the treatment of pulmonary MTB.

  13. Light-concentrating plasmonic Au superstructures with significantly visible-light-enhanced catalytic performance.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jinhu; Li, Ying; Zu, Lianhai; Tong, Lianming; Liu, Guanglei; Qin, Yao; Shi, Donglu

    2015-04-22

    Noble metals are well-known for their surface plasmon resonance effect that enables strong light absorption typically in the visible regions for gold and silver. However, unlike semiconductors, noble metals are commonly considered incapable of catalyzing reactions via photogenerated electron-hole pairs due to their continuous energy band structures. So far, photonically activated catalytic system based on pure noble metal nanostructures has seldom been reported. Here, we report the development of three different novel plasmonic Au superstructures comprised of Au nanoparticles, multiple-twinned nanoparticles and nanoworms assembling on the surfaces of SiO2 nanospheres respectively via a well-designed synthetic strategy. It is found that these novel Au superstructures show enhanced broadband visible-light absorption due to the plasmon resonance coupling within the superstructures, and thus can effectively focus the energy of photon fluxes to generate much more excited hot electrons and holes for promoting catalytic reactions. Accordingly, these Au superstructures exhibit significantly visible-light-enhanced catalytic efficiency (up to ∼264% enhancement) for the commercial reaction of p-nitrophenol reduction. PMID:25840556

  14. Titanium surface hydrophilicity enhances platelet activation.

    PubMed

    Alfarsi, Mohammed A; Hamlet, Stephen M; Ivanovski, Saso

    2014-01-01

    Titanium implant surface modification is a key strategy used to enhance osseointegration. Platelets are the first cells that interact with the implant surface whereupon they release a wide array of proteins that influence the subsequent healing process. This study therefore investigated the effect of titanium surface modification on the attachment and activation of human platelets. The surface characteristics of three titanium surfaces: smooth (SMO), micro-rough (SLA) and hydrophilic micro-rough (SLActive) and the subsequent attachment and activation of platelets following exposure to these surfaces were determined. The SLActive surface showed the presence of significant nanoscale topographical features. While attached platelets appeared to be morphologically similar, significantly fewer platelets attached to the SLActive surface compared to both the SMO and SLA surfaces. The SLActive surface however induced the release of the higher levels of chemokines β-thromboglobulin and platelet factor 4 from platelets. This study shows that titanium surface topography and chemistry have a significant effect on platelet activation and chemokine release.

  15. Serine deprivation enhances antineoplastic activity of biguanides.

    PubMed

    Gravel, Simon-Pierre; Hulea, Laura; Toban, Nader; Birman, Elena; Blouin, Marie-José; Zakikhani, Mahvash; Zhao, Yunhua; Topisirovic, Ivan; St-Pierre, Julie; Pollak, Michael

    2014-12-15

    Metformin, a biguanide widely used in the treatment of type II diabetes, clearly exhibits antineoplastic activity in experimental models and has been reported to reduce cancer incidence in diabetics. There are ongoing clinical trials to evaluate its antitumor properties, which may relate to its fundamental activity as an inhibitor of oxidative phosphorylation. Here, we show that serine withdrawal increases the antineoplastic effects of phenformin (a potent biguanide structurally related to metformin). Serine synthesis was not inhibited by biguanides. Instead, metabolic studies indicated a requirement for serine to allow cells to compensate for biguanide-induced decrease in oxidative phosphorylation by upregulating glycolysis. Furthermore, serine deprivation modified the impact of metformin on the relative abundance of metabolites within the citric acid cycle. In mice, a serine-deficient diet reduced serine levels in tumors and significantly enhanced the tumor growth-inhibitory actions of biguanide treatment. Our results define a dietary manipulation that can enhance the efficacy of biguanides as antineoplastic agents that target cancer cell energy metabolism.

  16. : Synthesis, Characterization, and Enhanced Photocatalytic Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Xiaoming; Fu, Feng; Li, Wenhong

    2014-12-01

    3D hierarchical microspheres of Cu-loaded Bi2WO6 are successfully prepared by the hydrothermal synthesis method on a large scale. The as-prepared samples are characterized by UV-Vis DRS, BET, XRD, XPS, and SEM. The results reveal that the light absorption of Cu-loaded Bi2WO6 has higher intensity in the visible range and a bathochromic shift of the absorption edge compared to that of pure Bi2WO6. The photocatalytic activity is evaluated by phenol removal from aqueous solution under visible-light irradiation. The results demonstrate that loaded Cu significantly enhances the photocatalytic activity of Bi2WO6, for the loaded Cu acts as the electron receptor on the surface of Bi2WO6, and inhibits the recombination of photogenerated electron-hole. The content of loaded Cu has an impact on the catalytic activity, and the 1.0 wt.% Cu-loaded Bi2WO6 exhibits the best photocatalytic activity in the degradation of phenol. Furthermore, the reaction kinetics of phenol removal from aqueous solution over the Cu-loaded Bi2WO6 is established by the way of the Langmuir-Hinshelwood model. The results indicate that the process of photodegradation of phenol on Cu-loaded Bi2WO6 match the Langmuir-Hinshelwood kinetic model.

  17. Graphene Oxide Quantum Dots Covalently Functionalized PVDF Membrane with Significantly-Enhanced Bactericidal and Antibiofouling Performances

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Zhiping; Yu, Dingshan; He, Ziming; Liu, Jing; Xiao, Fang-Xing; Zhang, Yan; Wang, Rong; Bhattacharyya, Dibakar; Tan, Timothy Thatt Yang

    2016-01-01

    Covalent bonding of graphene oxide quantum dots (GOQDs) onto amino modified polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membrane has generated a new type of nano-carbon functionalized membrane with significantly enhanced antibacterial and antibiofouling properties. A continuous filtration test using E. coli containing feedwater shows that the relative flux drop over GOQDs modified PVDF is 23%, which is significantly lower than those over pristine PVDF (86%) and GO-sheet modified PVDF (62%) after 10 h of filtration. The presence of GOQD coating layer effectively inactivates E. coli and S. aureus cells, and prevents the biofilm formation on the membrane surface, producing excellent antimicrobial activity and potentially antibiofouling capability, more superior than those of previously reported two-dimensional GO sheets and one-dimensional CNTs modified membranes. The distinctive antimicrobial and antibiofouling performances could be attributed to the unique structure and uniform dispersion of GOQDs, enabling the exposure of a larger fraction of active edges and facilitating the formation of oxidation stress. Furthermore, GOQDs modified membrane possesses satisfying long-term stability and durability due to the strong covalent interaction between PVDF and GOQDs. This study opens up a new synthetic avenue in the fabrication of efficient surface-functionalized polymer membranes for potential waste water treatment and biomolecules separation. PMID:26832603

  18. Graphene Oxide Quantum Dots Covalently Functionalized PVDF Membrane with Significantly-Enhanced Bactericidal and Antibiofouling Performances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Zhiping; Yu, Dingshan; He, Ziming; Liu, Jing; Xiao, Fang-Xing; Zhang, Yan; Wang, Rong; Bhattacharyya, Dibakar; Tan, Timothy Thatt Yang

    2016-02-01

    Covalent bonding of graphene oxide quantum dots (GOQDs) onto amino modified polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) membrane has generated a new type of nano-carbon functionalized membrane with significantly enhanced antibacterial and antibiofouling properties. A continuous filtration test using E. coli containing feedwater shows that the relative flux drop over GOQDs modified PVDF is 23%, which is significantly lower than those over pristine PVDF (86%) and GO-sheet modified PVDF (62%) after 10 h of filtration. The presence of GOQD coating layer effectively inactivates E. coli and S. aureus cells, and prevents the biofilm formation on the membrane surface, producing excellent antimicrobial activity and potentially antibiofouling capability, more superior than those of previously reported two-dimensional GO sheets and one-dimensional CNTs modified membranes. The distinctive antimicrobial and antibiofouling performances could be attributed to the unique structure and uniform dispersion of GOQDs, enabling the exposure of a larger fraction of active edges and facilitating the formation of oxidation stress. Furthermore, GOQDs modified membrane possesses satisfying long-term stability and durability due to the strong covalent interaction between PVDF and GOQDs. This study opens up a new synthetic avenue in the fabrication of efficient surface-functionalized polymer membranes for potential waste water treatment and biomolecules separation.

  19. Prognostic and Clinicopathological Significance of Transducer-Like Enhancer of Split 1 Expression in Gastric Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Ji-Hye; Son, Myoung-Won; Kim, Kyung-Ju; Oh, Mee-Hye; Cho, Hyundeuk; Lee, Hyun Ju; Jang, Si-Hyong

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Transducer-like enhancer of split 1 (TLE1) is a member of the Groucho/TLE family of transcriptional co-repressors that regulate the transcriptional activity of numerous genes. TLE1 is involved in the tumorigenesis of various tumors. We investigated the prognostic significance of TLE1 expression and its association with clinicopathological parameters in gastric cancer (GC) patients. Materials and Methods Immunohistochemical analysis of six tissue microarrays was performed to examine TLE1 expression using 291 surgically resected GC specimens from the Soonchunhyang University Cheonan Hospital between July 2006 and December 2009. Results In the non-neoplastic gastric mucosa, TLE1 expression was negative. In GC, 121 patients (41.6%) were positive for TLE1. The expression of TLE1 was significantly associated with male gender (P=0.021), less frequent lymphatic (P=0.017) or perineural invasion (P=0.029), intestinal type according to the Lauren classification (P=0.024), good histologic grade (P<0.001), early pathologic T-stage (P=0.012), and early American Joint Committee on Cancer stage (P=0.022). In the Kaplan-Meier analysis, the TLE1 expression was significantly associated with longer disease-free (P=0.022) and overall (P=0.001) survival rates. Conclusions We suggested that TLE1 expression is a good prognostic indicator in GCs. PMID:27104023

  20. [Significance of the functional activity of antibodies in influenza immunity].

    PubMed

    Naĭkhin, A N; Artem'eva, S A; Bosak, L V; Katorgina, L G

    1995-01-01

    A simple and inexpensive test for mass examination of the functional activity of serum antibodies was developed. The test is based on a kinetic serologic reaction that reflects the time course of changes in antibody titers depending on the time of contact of the tested material with antigen. The curves of serum kinetic titration were processed on a computer by the special programme. As a result, an integral factor, an antibody functional activity index (AFAI) was calculated for each serum sample under study. The titers and AFAI were determined in more than 2,000 healthy persons, patients with influenza A and B, and those immunized with different influenza vaccines. The persons having similar antibody titers were demonstrated to greatly differ in AFAI. The functional activity of antibodies is a more precise marker of protection from influenza than the routine quantitative characteristics of antibodies, i.e. titers. The high baseline AFAI decreased the severity of influenza infection. Live influenza vaccines stimulated the production of antibodies having higher AFAI than inactivated ones. The live influenza strains (candidates for vaccine ones) significantly differed in their ability to stimulate the production of antibodies having a high functional activity.

  1. Enhanced activation of the left hemisphere promotes normative decision making.

    PubMed

    Corser, Ryan; Jasper, John D

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have reported that enhanced activation of the left cerebral hemisphere reduces risky-choice, attribute, and goal-framing effects relative to enhanced activation of the right cerebral hemisphere. The present study sought to extend these findings and show that enhanced activation of the left hemisphere also reduces violations of other normative principles, besides the invariance principle. Participants completed ratio bias (Experiment 1, N = 296) and base rate neglect problems (Experiment 2, N = 145) under normal (control) viewing or with the right or left hemisphere primarily activated by imposing a unidirectional gaze. In Experiment 1 we found that enhanced left hemispheric activation reduced the ratio bias relative to normal viewing and a group experiencing enhanced right hemispheric activation. In Experiment 2 enhanced left hemispheric activation resulted in using base rates more than normal viewing, but not significantly more than enhanced right hemispheric activation. Results suggest that hemispheric asymmetries can affect higher-order cognitive processes, such as decision-making biases. Possible theoretical accounts are discussed as well as implications for dual-process theories.

  2. Amorphous Semiconductor Nanowires Created by Site-Specific Heteroatom Substitution with Significantly Enhanced Photoelectrochemical Performance.

    PubMed

    He, Ting; Zu, Lianhai; Zhang, Yan; Mao, Chengliang; Xu, Xiaoxiang; Yang, Jinhu; Yang, Shihe

    2016-08-23

    Semiconductor nanowires that have been extensively studied are typically in a crystalline phase. Much less studied are amorphous semiconductor nanowires due to the difficulty for their synthesis, despite a set of characteristics desirable for photoelectric devices, such as higher surface area, higher surface activity, and higher light harvesting. In this work of combined experiment and computation, taking Zn2GeO4 (ZGO) as an example, we propose a site-specific heteroatom substitution strategy through a solution-phase ions-alternative-deposition route to prepare amorphous/crystalline Si-incorporated ZGO nanowires with tunable band structures. The substitution of Si atoms for the Zn or Ge atoms distorts the bonding network to a different extent, leading to the formation of amorphous Zn1.7Si0.3GeO4 (ZSGO) or crystalline Zn2(GeO4)0.88(SiO4)0.12 (ZGSO) nanowires, respectively, with different bandgaps. The amorphous ZSGO nanowire arrays exhibit significantly enhanced performance in photoelectrochemical water splitting, such as higher and more stable photocurrent, and faster photoresponse and recovery, relative to crystalline ZGSO and ZGO nanowires in this work, as well as ZGO photocatalysts reported previously. The remarkable performance highlights the advantages of the ZSGO amorphous nanowires for photoelectric devices, such as higher light harvesting capability, faster charge separation, lower charge recombination, and higher surface catalytic activity.

  3. Amorphous Semiconductor Nanowires Created by Site-Specific Heteroatom Substitution with Significantly Enhanced Photoelectrochemical Performance.

    PubMed

    He, Ting; Zu, Lianhai; Zhang, Yan; Mao, Chengliang; Xu, Xiaoxiang; Yang, Jinhu; Yang, Shihe

    2016-08-23

    Semiconductor nanowires that have been extensively studied are typically in a crystalline phase. Much less studied are amorphous semiconductor nanowires due to the difficulty for their synthesis, despite a set of characteristics desirable for photoelectric devices, such as higher surface area, higher surface activity, and higher light harvesting. In this work of combined experiment and computation, taking Zn2GeO4 (ZGO) as an example, we propose a site-specific heteroatom substitution strategy through a solution-phase ions-alternative-deposition route to prepare amorphous/crystalline Si-incorporated ZGO nanowires with tunable band structures. The substitution of Si atoms for the Zn or Ge atoms distorts the bonding network to a different extent, leading to the formation of amorphous Zn1.7Si0.3GeO4 (ZSGO) or crystalline Zn2(GeO4)0.88(SiO4)0.12 (ZGSO) nanowires, respectively, with different bandgaps. The amorphous ZSGO nanowire arrays exhibit significantly enhanced performance in photoelectrochemical water splitting, such as higher and more stable photocurrent, and faster photoresponse and recovery, relative to crystalline ZGSO and ZGO nanowires in this work, as well as ZGO photocatalysts reported previously. The remarkable performance highlights the advantages of the ZSGO amorphous nanowires for photoelectric devices, such as higher light harvesting capability, faster charge separation, lower charge recombination, and higher surface catalytic activity. PMID:27494205

  4. Enhancer RNAs participate in androgen receptor-driven looping that selectively enhances gene activation.

    PubMed

    Hsieh, Chen-Lin; Fei, Teng; Chen, Yiwen; Li, Tiantian; Gao, Yanfei; Wang, Xiaodong; Sun, Tong; Sweeney, Christopher J; Lee, Gwo-Shu Mary; Chen, Shaoyong; Balk, Steven P; Liu, Xiaole Shirley; Brown, Myles; Kantoff, Philip W

    2014-05-20

    The androgen receptor (AR) is a key factor that regulates the behavior and fate of prostate cancer cells. The AR-regulated network is activated when AR binds enhancer elements and modulates specific enhancer-promoter looping. Kallikrein-related peptidase 3 (KLK3), which codes for prostate-specific antigen (PSA), is a well-known AR-regulated gene and its upstream enhancers produce bidirectional enhancer RNAs (eRNAs), termed KLK3e. Here, we demonstrate that KLK3e facilitates the spatial interaction of the KLK3 enhancer and the KLK2 promoter and enhances long-distance KLK2 transcriptional activation. KLK3e carries the core enhancer element derived from the androgen response element III (ARE III), which is required for the interaction of AR and Mediator 1 (Med1). Furthermore, we show that KLK3e processes RNA-dependent enhancer activity depending on the integrity of core enhancer elements. The transcription of KLK3e was detectable and its expression is significantly correlated with KLK3 (R(2) = 0.6213, P < 5 × 10(-11)) and KLK2 (R(2) = 0.5893, P < 5 × 10(-10)) in human prostate tissues. Interestingly, RNAi silencing of KLK3e resulted in a modest negative effect on prostate cancer cell proliferation. Accordingly, we report that an androgen-induced eRNA scaffolds the AR-associated protein complex that modulates chromosomal architecture and selectively enhances AR-dependent gene expression. PMID:24778216

  5. A Novel Peptide from Soybean Protein Isolate Significantly Enhances Resistance of the Organism under Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Heran; Liu, Rui; Zhao, Ziyuan; Zhang, Zhixian; Cao, Yue; Ma, Yudan; Guo, Yi; Xu, Li

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have indicated that protein hydrolysates have broad biological effects. In the current study we describe a novel antioxidative peptide, FDPAL, from soybean protein isolate (SPI). The aim of this study was to purify and characterize an antioxidative peptide from SPI and determine its antioxidative mechanism. LC–MS/MS was used to isolate and identify the peptide from SPI. The sequence of the peptide was determined to be Phe-Asp-Pro-Ala-Leu (FDPAL, 561 Da). FDPAL can cause significant enhancement of resistance to oxidative stress both in cells as well as simple organisms. In Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), FDPAL can up-regulate the expression of certain genes associated with resistance. The antioxidant activity of this peptide can be attributed to the presence of a specific amino acid sequence. Results from our work suggest that FDPAL can facilitate potential applications of proteins carrying this sequence in the nutraceutical, bioactive material and clinical medicine areas, as well as in cosmetics and health care products. PMID:27455060

  6. A Novel Peptide from Soybean Protein Isolate Significantly Enhances Resistance of the Organism under Oxidative Stress.

    PubMed

    Ma, Heran; Liu, Rui; Zhao, Ziyuan; Zhang, Zhixian; Cao, Yue; Ma, Yudan; Guo, Yi; Xu, Li

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have indicated that protein hydrolysates have broad biological effects. In the current study we describe a novel antioxidative peptide, FDPAL, from soybean protein isolate (SPI). The aim of this study was to purify and characterize an antioxidative peptide from SPI and determine its antioxidative mechanism. LC-MS/MS was used to isolate and identify the peptide from SPI. The sequence of the peptide was determined to be Phe-Asp-Pro-Ala-Leu (FDPAL, 561 Da). FDPAL can cause significant enhancement of resistance to oxidative stress both in cells as well as simple organisms. In Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), FDPAL can up-regulate the expression of certain genes associated with resistance. The antioxidant activity of this peptide can be attributed to the presence of a specific amino acid sequence. Results from our work suggest that FDPAL can facilitate potential applications of proteins carrying this sequence in the nutraceutical, bioactive material and clinical medicine areas, as well as in cosmetics and health care products. PMID:27455060

  7. Continuous background light significantly increases flashing-light enhancement of photosynthesis and growth of microalgae.

    PubMed

    Abu-Ghosh, Said; Fixler, Dror; Dubinsky, Zvy; Iluz, David

    2015-01-01

    Under specific conditions, flashing light enhances the photosynthesis rate in comparison to continuous illumination. Here we show that a combination of flashing light and continuous background light with the same integrated photon dose as continuous or flashing light alone can be used to significantly enhance photosynthesis and increase microalgae growth. To test this hypothesis, the green microalga Dunaliella salina was exposed to three different light regimes: continuous light, flashing light, and concomitant application of both. Algal growth was compared under three different integrated light quantities; low, intermediate, and moderately high. Under the combined light regime, there was a substantial increase in all algal growth parameters, with an enhanced photosynthesis rate, within 3days. Our strategy demonstrates a hitherto undescribed significant increase in photosynthesis and algal growth rates, which is beyond the increase by flashing light alone.

  8. The Significance of Ras Activity in Pancreatic Cancer Initiation

    PubMed Central

    Logsdon, Craig D.; Lu, Weiqin

    2016-01-01

    The genetic landscape of pancreatic cancer shows nearly ubiquitous mutations of K-RAS. However, oncogenic K-Rasmt alone is not sufficient to lead to pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) in either human or in genetically modified adult mouse models. Many stimulants, such as high fat diet, CCK, LPS, PGE2 and others, have physiological effects at low concentrations that are mediated in part through modest increases in K-Ras activity. However, at high concentrations, they induce inflammation that, in the presence of oncogenic K-Ras expression, substantially accelerates PDAC formation. The mechanism involves increased activity of oncogenic K-Rasmt. Unlike what has been proposed in the standard paradigm for the role of Ras in oncogenesis, oncogenic K-Rasmt is now known to not be constitutively active. Rather, it can be activated by standard mechanisms similar to wild-type K-Ras, but its activity is sustained for a prolonged period. Furthermore, if the level of K-Ras activity exceeds a threshold at which it begins to generate its own activators, then a feed-forward loop is formed between K-Ras activity and inflammation and pathological processes including oncogenesis are initiated. Oncogenic K-Rasmt activation, a key event in PDAC initiation and development, is subject to complex regulatory mechanisms. Reagents which inhibit inflammation, such as the Cox2 inhibitor celecoxib, block the feed-forward loop and prevent induction of PDAC in models with endogenous oncogenic K-Rasmt. Increased understanding of the role of activating and inhibitory mechanisms on oncogenic K-Rasmt activity is of paramount importance for the development of preventive and therapeutic strategies to fight against this lethal disease. PMID:26929740

  9. Focused R&D For Electrochromic Smart Windowsa: Significant Performance and Yield Enhancements

    SciTech Connect

    Mark Burdis; Neil Sbar

    2003-01-31

    There is a need to improve the energy efficiency of building envelopes as they are the primary factor governing the heating, cooling, lighting and ventilation requirements of buildings--influencing 53% of building energy use. In particular, windows contribute significantly to the overall energy performance of building envelopes, thus there is a need to develop advanced energy efficient window and glazing systems. Electrochromic (EC) windows represent the next generation of advanced glazing technology that will (1) reduce the energy consumed in buildings, (2) improve the overall comfort of the building occupants, and (3) improve the thermal performance of the building envelope. ''Switchable'' EC windows provide, on demand, dynamic control of visible light, solar heat gain, and glare without blocking the view. As exterior light levels change, the window's performance can be electronically adjusted to suit conditions. A schematic illustrating how SageGlass{reg_sign} electrochromic windows work is shown in Figure I.1. SageGlass{reg_sign} EC glazings offer the potential to save cooling and lighting costs, with the added benefit of improving thermal and visual comfort. Control over solar heat gain will also result in the use of smaller HVAC equipment. If a step change in the energy efficiency and performance of buildings is to be achieved, there is a clear need to bring EC technology to the marketplace. This project addresses accelerating the widespread introduction of EC windows in buildings and thus maximizing total energy savings in the U.S. and worldwide. We report on R&D activities to improve the optical performance needed to broadly penetrate the full range of architectural markets. Also, processing enhancements have been implemented to reduce manufacturing costs. Finally, tests are being conducted to demonstrate the durability of the EC device and the dual pane insulating glass unit (IGU) to be at least equal to that of conventional windows.

  10. Rural Enterprises, Incorporated report of significant activities and accomplishments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1985-01-01

    The ongoing activities of Rural Enterprises, Inc. are presented. The function of Rural Enterprises is to bring innovation from its rudimentary conceptual stages to useful and productive ends by means of cooperation with government, business, and educational institutions.

  11. Significant light absorption enhancement in silicon thin film tandem solar cells with metallic nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cai, Boyuan; Li, Xiangping; Zhang, Yinan; Jia, Baohua

    2016-05-01

    Enhancing the light absorption in microcrystalline silicon bottom cell of a silicon-based tandem solar cell for photocurrent matching holds the key to achieving the overall solar cell performance breakthroughs. Here, we present a concept for significantly improving the absorption of both subcells simultaneously by simply applying tailored metallic nanoparticles both on the top and at the rear surfaces of the solar cells. Significant light absorption enhancement as large as 56% has been achieved in the bottom subcells. More importantly the thickness of the microcrystalline layer can be reduced by 57% without compromising the optical performance of the tandem solar cell, providing a cost-effective strategy for high performance tandem solar cells.

  12. Significant light absorption enhancement in silicon thin film tandem solar cells with metallic nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Cai, Boyuan; Li, Xiangping; Zhang, Yinan; Jia, Baohua

    2016-05-13

    Enhancing the light absorption in microcrystalline silicon bottom cell of a silicon-based tandem solar cell for photocurrent matching holds the key to achieving the overall solar cell performance breakthroughs. Here, we present a concept for significantly improving the absorption of both subcells simultaneously by simply applying tailored metallic nanoparticles both on the top and at the rear surfaces of the solar cells. Significant light absorption enhancement as large as 56% has been achieved in the bottom subcells. More importantly the thickness of the microcrystalline layer can be reduced by 57% without compromising the optical performance of the tandem solar cell, providing a cost-effective strategy for high performance tandem solar cells. PMID:27040376

  13. Significant light absorption enhancement in silicon thin film tandem solar cells with metallic nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Cai, Boyuan; Li, Xiangping; Zhang, Yinan; Jia, Baohua

    2016-05-13

    Enhancing the light absorption in microcrystalline silicon bottom cell of a silicon-based tandem solar cell for photocurrent matching holds the key to achieving the overall solar cell performance breakthroughs. Here, we present a concept for significantly improving the absorption of both subcells simultaneously by simply applying tailored metallic nanoparticles both on the top and at the rear surfaces of the solar cells. Significant light absorption enhancement as large as 56% has been achieved in the bottom subcells. More importantly the thickness of the microcrystalline layer can be reduced by 57% without compromising the optical performance of the tandem solar cell, providing a cost-effective strategy for high performance tandem solar cells.

  14. Distribution and significance of heterotrophic marine bacteria with antibacterial activity.

    PubMed Central

    Nair, S; Simidu, U

    1987-01-01

    Bacteria with antibacterial activity were isolated from seawater, sediments, phytoplankton, and zooplankton of Suruga, Sagami, and Tokyo Bays and from soft corals and sponges collected from the Taiwan coast. Of the 726 strains isolated, 37 showed antibacterial activity against either Vibrio parahaemolyticus (ATCC 17802) or Staphylococcus aureus (P209). Sediment harbored the lowest number of these forms of bacteria, and those from Tokyo Bay did not show any activity. Attached isolates showed greater activity compared with free-living forms. Relatively high numbers of strains with antibacterial activity were associated with phytoplankton. Among the zooplankton isolates, cladocerans harbored the maximum number of antibacterial strains. Isolates were more inhibitory to gram-positive test cultures. Autoinhibition was observed only among 8% of the isolates. Marine nonproducers were more susceptible. Pseudomonas/Alteromonas species made up 81.0% of isolates, of which 30% were pigmented strains. The absence or reduction in number of bacteria with antibacterial activity in Tokyo Bay is attributed to its eutrophic nature, which may tend to moderate the production of antibacterial compounds. PMID:3435149

  15. Pathogenic significance of alpha-N-acetylgalactosaminidase activity found in the hemagglutinin of influenza virus.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Nobuto; Urade, Masahiro

    2005-04-01

    Serum vitamin D3-binding protein (Gc protein) is the precursor for the principal macrophage activating factor (MAF). The precursor activity of serum Gc protein was reduced in all influenza virus-infected patients. These patient sera contained alpha-N-acetylgalactosaminidase (Nagalase) that deglycosylates Gc protein. Deglycosylated Gc protein cannot be converted to MAF, thus it loses the MAF precursor activity, leading to immunosuppression. An influenza virus stock contained a large amount of Nagalase activity. A sucrose gradient centrifugation analysis of the virus stock showed that the profile of Nagalase activity corresponds to that of hemagglutinating activity. When these gradient fractions were treated with 0.01% trypsin for 30 min, the Nagalase activity of each fraction increased significantly, suggesting that the Nagalase activity resides on an outer envelope protein of the influenza virion and is enhanced by the proteolytic process. After disruption of influenza virions with sodium deoxycholate, fractionation of the envelope proteins with mannose-specific lectin affinity column along with electrophoretic analysis of the Nagalase peak fraction revealed that Nagalase is the intrinsic component of the hemagglutinin (HA). Cloned HA protein exhibited Nagalase activity only if treated with trypsin. Since both fusion capacity and Nagalase activity of HA protein are expressed by proteolytic cleavage, Nagalase activity appears to be an enzymatic basis for the fusion process. Thus, Nagalase plays dual roles in regulating both infectivity and immunosuppression. PMID:15848273

  16. On the validity versus utility of activity landscapes: are all activity cliffs statistically significant?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Most work on the topic of activity landscapes has focused on their quantitative description and visual representation, with the aim of aiding navigation of SAR. Recent developments have addressed applications such as quantifying the proportion of activity cliffs, investigating the predictive abilities of activity landscape methods and so on. However, all these publications have worked under the assumption that the activity landscape models are “real” (i.e., statistically significant). Results The current study addresses for the first time, in a quantitative manner, the significance of a landscape or individual cliffs in the landscape. In particular, we question whether the activity landscape derived from observed (experimental) activity data is different from a randomly generated landscape. To address this we used the SALI measure with six different data sets tested against one or more molecular targets. We also assessed the significance of the landscapes for single and multiple representations. Conclusions We find that non-random landscapes are data set and molecular representation dependent. For the data sets and representations used in this work, our results suggest that not all representations lead to non-random landscapes. This indicates that not all molecular representations should be used to a) interpret the SAR and b) combined to generate consensus models. Our results suggest that significance testing of activity landscape models and in particular, activity cliffs, is key, prior to the use of such models. PMID:24694189

  17. Finding Significant Correlates of Conscious Activity in Rhythmic EEG

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Durka, Piotr J.

    2005-12-01

    One of the important issues in designing an EEG-based brain-computer interface is an exact delineation of the rhythms, related to the intended or performed action. Traditionally, related bands were found by trial and error procedures seeking maximum reactivity. Even then, large values of ERD/ERS did not imply the statistical significance of the results. This paper presents complete methodology, allowing for a high-resolution presentation of the whole time-frequency picture of event-related changes in the energy density of signals, revealing the microstructure of rhythms, and determination of the time-frequency regions of energy changes, which are related to the intentions in a statistically significant way.

  18. Activated microglia enhance neurogenesis via trypsinogen secretion.

    PubMed

    Nikolakopoulou, Angeliki M; Dutta, Ranjan; Chen, Zhihong; Miller, Robert H; Trapp, Bruce D

    2013-05-21

    White matter neurons in multiple sclerosis brains are destroyed during demyelination and then replaced in some chronic multiple sclerosis lesions that exhibit a morphologically distinct population of activated microglia [Chang A, et al. (2008) Brain 131(Pt 9):2366-2375]. Here we investigated whether activated microglia secrete factors that promote the generation of neurons from white matter cells. Adult rat brain microglia (resting or activated with lipopolysaccharide) were isolated by flow cytometry and cocultured with neonatal rat optic nerve cells in separate but media-connected chambers. Optic nerve cells cocultured with activated microglia showed a significant increase in the number of cells of neuronal phenotype, identified by neuron-specific class III beta-tubulin (TUJ-1) labeling, compared with cultures with resting microglia. To investigate the possible source of the TUJ-1-positive cells, A2B5-positive oligodendrocyte progenitor cells and A2B5-negative cells were isolated and cocultured with resting and activated microglia. Significantly more TUJ-1-positive cells were generated from A2B5-negative cells (∼70%) than from A2B5-positive cells (~30%). Mass spectrometry analysis of microglia culture media identified protease serine 2 (PRSS2) as a factor secreted by activated, but not resting, microglia. When added to optic nerve cultures, PRSS2 significantly increased neurogenesis, whereas the serine protease inhibitor, secretory leukocyte protease inhibitor, decreased activated microglia-induced neurogenesis. Collectively our data provide evidence that activated microglia increase neurogenesis through secretion of PRSS2.

  19. Clinical significance of diffuse delta EEG activity in chronic schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Matsuura, M; Yoshino, M; Ohta, K; Onda, H; Nakajima, K; Kojima, T

    1994-07-01

    1) Forty-three chronic schizophrenics with diffuse delta activity (DDA) in their rest-awake EEGs were compared with 23 chronic schizophrenics with normal EEGs. 2) The DDA group was divided into three sub-groups according to the temporal persistence of DDA: brief, intermittent, and prolonged. The intermittent DDA is analogous to intermittent rhythmic delta activity (IRDA). 3) The disorganized type of schizophrenia was frequent in the DDA group and the residual type was frequent in the normal EEG group. 4) The doses of neuroleptics, as well as those of phenothiazines and butyrophenones, were higher in the DDA than in the normal group. 5) The frequency of co-administration of carbamazepine was higher in the DDA than in the normal group, and the rate increased with the degree of abnormality. 6) In a 1 year follow-up of the DDA group, reducing doses of neuroleptics resulted in a tendency for DDA to disappear, and reducing the doses of adjunctive carbamazepine caused DDA to disappear. 7) There was no correlation between DDA and the psychiatric symptoms, intelligence level, or CT findings.

  20. Motivationally significant self-control: enhanced action withholding involves the right inferior frontal junction.

    PubMed

    O'Connor, David A; Upton, Daniel J; Moore, Jennifer; Hester, Robert

    2015-01-01

    In everyday life, people use self-control to withhold actions. This ability is particularly important when the consequences of action withholding have an impact on the individual's well-being. Despite its importance, it is unclear as to how the neural nodes implicated in action withholding contribute to this real-world type of self-control. By modifying an action withholding paradigm, the go/no-go task, we examined how the brain exerts self-control during a scenario in which the implications of withholding an action are meaningful and motivationally significant. A successfully withheld response contributed to long-term monetary rewards, whereas failure to withhold a response incurred an immediate monetary punishment. Compared with neutral action withholding, participants significantly improved their performance when these contingencies were applied. Crucially, although the right IFG and pre-SMA were found to promote overall action withholding, the enhancement in behavioral performance relative to a neutral condition was only reflected by a physiological change in a region encompassing the right inferior frontal junction and precentral gyrus. We speculate that the ability to flexibly modulate attention to goal-relevant stimuli is crucial to enhanced, motivationally driven action withholding and that this ability is subserved by the right inferior frontal junction. These findings suggest that control-modulating factors, rather than action withholding processes per se, can be critical to improving motivationally significant action withholding outcomes. PMID:25115186

  1. Significantly Enhanced Separation using ZIF-8 Membranes by Partial Conversion of Calcined Layered Double Hydroxide Precursors.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yi; Peng, Yuan; Wang, Nanyi; Li, Yanshuo; Pan, Jia Hong; Yang, Weishen; Caro, Jürgen

    2015-11-01

    Significantly enhanced H2 /CH4 (ca. 80) selectivity was realized by effective suppression of the framework flexibility of a prepared ZIF-8 membrane. Initially a ZnO buffer layer consisting of 20 nm-sized ZnO-nanoparticle aggregates was fabricated by controlled calcination of a ZnAl-NO3 layered double hydroxide membrane. Owing to its high chemical reactivity, the ZnO buffer layer was partially converted into a well-intergrown ZIF-8 membrane with a certain penetration depth upon solvothermal treatment with ligands. Our method may represent a new concept for the design of advanced MOF membranes with high selectivity. PMID:26427908

  2. The mother as hunter: significant reduction in foraging costs through enhancements of predation in maternal rats.

    PubMed

    Kinsley, Craig Howard; Blair, Jamie C; Karp, Natalie E; Hester, Naomi W; McNamara, Ilan M; Orthmeyer, Angela L; McSweeney, Molly C; Bardi, Massimo M; Karelina, Kate; Christon, Lillian M; Sirkin, Maxwell R; Victoria, Lindsay W; Skurka, Danielle J; Fyfe, Christian R; Hudepohl, Margaret B; Felicio, Luciano F; Franssen, R Adam; Meyer, Elizabeth E A; da Silva, Ilton S; Lambert, Kelly G

    2014-09-01

    In previous laboratory investigations, we have identified enhanced cognition and reduced stress in parous rats, which are likely adaptations in mothers needing to efficiently exploit resources to maintain, protect and provision their immature offspring. Here, in a series of seven behavioral tests on rats, we examined a natural interface between cognition and resource gathering: predation. Experiment 1 compared predatory behavior (toward crickets) in age-matched nulliparous mothers (NULLs) and postpartum lactating mothers (LACTs), revealing a highly significant enhancement of predation in LACT females (mean = -65s in LACTs, vs. -270s in NULLs). Experiment 2 examined the possibility that LACTs, given their increased metabolic rate, were hungrier, and thus more motivated to hunt; doubling the length of time of food deprivation in NULLs did not decrease their predatory latencies. Experiments 3-5, which examined sensory regulation of the effect, indicated that olfaction (anosmia), audition (blockade with white noise), and somatosensation (trimming the vibrissae) appear to play little role in the behavioral enhancement observed in the LACTs; Experiment 6 examined the possibility that visual augmentations may facilitate the improvements in predation; testing LACTs in a 0-lux environment eliminated the behavioral advantage (increasing their latencies from -65s to -212s), which suggests that temporary augmentation to the visual system may be important, and with hormone-neural alterations therein a likely candidate for further study. In contrast, testing NULLS in the 0-lux environment had the opposite effect, reducing their latency to catch the cricket (from -270s to -200s). Finally, Experiment 7 examined the development of predatory behavior in Early-pregnant (PREG), Mid-PREG, and Late-PREG females. Here, we observed a significant enhancement of predation in Mid-PREG and Late-PREG females--at a time when maternity-associated bodily changes would be expected to diminish

  3. Significant enhancement of negative secondary ion yields by cluster ion bombardment combined with cesium flooding.

    PubMed

    Philipp, Patrick; Angerer, Tina B; Sämfors, Sanna; Blenkinsopp, Paul; Fletcher, John S; Wirtz, Tom

    2015-10-01

    In secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), the beneficial effect of cesium implantation or flooding on the enhancement of negative secondary ion yields has been investigated in detail for various semiconductor and metal samples. All results have been obtained for monatomic ion bombardment. Recent progress in SIMS is based to a large extent on the development and use of cluster primary ions. In this work we show that the enhancement of negative secondary ions induced by the combination of ion bombardment with simultaneous cesium flooding is valid not only for monatomic ion bombardment but also for cluster primary ions. Experiments carried out using C60+ and Ar4000+ bombardment on silicon show that yields of negative secondary silicon ions can be optimized in the same way as by Ga+ and Cs+ bombardment. Both for monatomic and cluster ion bombardment, the optimization does not depend on the primary ion species. Hence, it can be assumed that the silicon results are also valid for other cluster primary ions and that results obtained for monatomic ion bombardment on other semiconductor and metal samples are also valid for cluster ion bombardment. In SIMS, cluster primary ions are also largely used for the analysis of organic matter. For polycarbonate, our results show that Ar4000+ bombardment combined with cesium flooding enhances secondary ion signals by a factor of 6. This can be attributed to the removal of charging effects and/or reduced fragmentation, but no major influence on ionization processes can be observed. The use of cesium flooding for the imaging of cells was also investigated and a significant enhancement of secondary ion yields was observed. Hence, cesium flooding has also a vast potential for SIMS analyses with cluster ion bombardment.

  4. Mechanical and Electrical Properties of a Polyimide Film Significantly Enhanced by the Addition of Single-Wall Carbon Nanotubes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meador, Michael A.

    2005-01-01

    Single-wall carbon nanotubes have been shown to possess a combination of outstanding mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties. The use of carbon nanotubes as an additive to improve the mechanical properties of polymers and/or enhance their thermal and electrical conductivity has been a topic of intense interest. Nanotube-modified polymeric materials could find a variety of applications in NASA missions including large-area antennas, solar arrays, and solar sails; radiation shielding materials for vehicles, habitats, and extravehicular activity suits; and multifunctional materials for vehicle structures and habitats. Use of these revolutionary materials could reduce vehicle weight significantly and improve vehicle performance and capabilities.

  5. Detecting insider activity using enhanced directory virtualization.

    SciTech Connect

    Shin, Dongwan; Claycomb, William R.

    2010-07-01

    Insider threats often target authentication and access control systems, which are frequently based on directory services. Detecting these threats is challenging, because malicious users with the technical ability to modify these structures often have sufficient knowledge and expertise to conceal unauthorized activity. The use of directory virtualization to monitor various systems across an enterprise can be a valuable tool for detecting insider activity. The addition of a policy engine to directory virtualization services enhances monitoring capabilities by allowing greater flexibility in analyzing changes for malicious intent. The resulting architecture is a system-based approach, where the relationships and dependencies between data sources and directory services are used to detect an insider threat, rather than simply relying on point solutions. This paper presents such an architecture in detail, including a description of implementation results.

  6. Enhanced interleukin activity following asbestos inhalation.

    PubMed Central

    Hartmann, D P; Georgian, M M; Oghiso, Y; Kagan, E

    1984-01-01

    Asbestos inhalation can cause pulmonary fibrosis and is associated with a variety of immunological abnormalities. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of asbestos inhalation on interleukin-1 (IL-1) and interleukin-2 (IL-2) production in a rodent model. Two groups of rats were exposed, by intermittent inhalation, to either amphibole (crocidolite) or serpentine (chrysotile) asbestos. A third (control) group of rats was sham exposed to clean air. Animals from the three exposure groups were thereafter immunized (or not immunized) with fetal calf serum antigens. In order to assay interleukin activity, supernatants were generated from cultures containing alveolar macrophages and autologous splenic lymphocytes, and from cultures containing alveolar macrophages alone. Using assay systems designed to detect IL-1 and IL-2 functional activity, the supernatants were evaluated for their capacity to stimulate lymphoproliferation and fibroblast DNA synthesis. Macrophage-lymphocyte co-culture supernatants, when obtained from immunized, asbestos exposed rats, contained greater IL-1 and IL-2 activity than identical supernatants from immunized, sham exposed animals. These between group differences were not, however, observed in supernatants from unimmunized rats, or when supernatants were generated in the absence of immune lymphocytes. These observations suggest that asbestos exposure is associated with enhanced activation of lymphocytes by antigens. The possible relevance of these findings to asbestos related fibrogenesis and immunological stimulation is discussed. PMID:6608427

  7. Does Enhanced External Counterpulsation (EECP) Significantly Affect Myocardial Perfusion?: A Systematic Review & Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Xiaoxia; Deng, Yanye; Wu, Dandong; Yu, Lehua; Huang, Rongzhong

    2016-01-01

    Background Enhanced external counterpulsation (EECP) is currently applied for treating coronary artery disease (CAD) patients. However, the mechanism(s) by which EECP ameliorates angina pectoris and long-term left ventricular function remain largely unknown. The aim of this study will be to assess whether EECP significantly affects myocardial perfusion in CAD patients through a systematic review and meta-analysis of the available literature. Methods MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane CENTRAL databases were searched for prospective studies on CAD patients that underwent EECP and reported myocardial perfusion data pre- and post-EECP. The impact of EECP was assessed based on the weighted mean difference (WMD) in myocardial perfusion from pre-EECP to post-EECP. Statistical heterogeneity was assessed by the I2 index. Publication bias was assessed through visual inspection of the funnel plot as well as Begg’s and Egger’s testing. Results Standard EECP therapy (i.e., 35–36 one-hour sessions within a seven-week period) significantly increased myocardial perfusion in CAD patients (pooled WMD: -0.19, 95% CI: -0.38 to 0.00, p = 0.049). A random effects analysis was applied on account of significant heterogeneity (I2 = 89.1%, p = 0.000). There was no evidence of significant publication bias (Begg’s p = 0.091; Egger’s p = 0.282). Conclusions Standard EECP therapy significantly increases myocardial perfusion in CAD patients. This study’s findings support the continued use of standard EECP therapy in CAD patients and provides one putative physiological mechanism to help explain the improvements in angina pectoris and long-term left ventricular function observed in CAD patients after EECP therapy. PMID:27045935

  8. Significantly enhanced robustness and electrochemical performance of flexible carbon nanotube-based supercapacitors by electrodepositing polypyrrole

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Yanli; Du, Lianhuan; Yang, Peihua; Sun, Peng; Yu, Xiang; Mai, Wenjie

    2015-08-01

    Here, we report robust, flexible CNT-based supercapacitor (SC) electrodes fabricated by electrodepositing polypyrrole (PPy) on freestanding vacuum-filtered CNT film. These electrodes demonstrate significantly improved mechanical properties (with the ultimate tensile strength of 16 MPa), and greatly enhanced electrochemical performance (5.6 times larger areal capacitance). The major drawback of conductive polymer electrodes is the fast capacitance decay caused by structural breakdown, which decreases cycling stability but this is not observed in our case. All-solid-state SCs assembled with the robust CNT/PPy electrodes exhibit excellent flexibility, long lifetime (95% capacitance retention after 10,000 cycles) and high electrochemical performance (a total device volumetric capacitance of 4.9 F/cm3). Moreover, a flexible SC pack is demonstrated to light up 53 LEDs or drive a digital watch, indicating the broad potential application of our SCs for portable/wearable electronics.

  9. Significant Broadband Photocurrent Enhancement by Au-CZTS Core-Shell Nanostructured Photocathodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xuemei; Wu, Xu; Centeno, Anthony; Ryan, Mary P.; Alford, Neil M.; Riley, D. Jason; Xie, Fang

    2016-03-01

    Copper zinc tin sulfide (CZTS) is a promising material for harvesting solar energy due to its abundance and non-toxicity. However, its poor performance hinders their wide application. In this paper gold (Au) nanoparticles are successfully incorporated into CZTS to form Au@CZTS core-shell nanostructures. The photocathode of Au@CZTS nanostructures exhibits enhanced optical absorption characteristics and improved incident photon-to-current efficiency (IPCE) performance. It is demonstrated that using this photocathode there is a significant increase of the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of a photoelectrochemical solar cell of 100% compared to using a CZTS without Au core. More importantly, the PCE of Au@CZTS photocathode improved by 15.8% compared to standard platinum (Pt) counter electrode. The increased efficiency is attributed to plasmon resonance energy transfer (PRET) between the Au nanoparticle core and the CZTS shell at wavelengths shorter than the localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) peak of the Au and the semiconductor bandgap.

  10. Behaviorally inhibited individuals demonstrate significantly enhanced conditioned response acquisition under non-optimal learning conditions.

    PubMed

    Holloway, J L; Allen, M T; Myers, C E; Servatius, R J

    2014-03-15

    Behavioral inhibition (BI) is an anxiety vulnerability factor associated with hypervigilance to novel stimuli, threat, and ambiguous cues. The progression from anxiety risk to a clinical disorder is unknown, although the acquisition of defensive learning and avoidance may be a critical feature. As the expression of avoidance is also central to anxiety development, the present study examined avoidance acquisition as a function of inhibited temperament using classical eyeblink conditioning. Individuals were classified as behaviorally inhibited (BI) or non-inhibited (NI) based on combined scores from the Adult and Retrospective Measures of Behavioural Inhibition (AMBI and RMBI, respectively). Acquisition was assessed using delay, omission, or yoked conditioning schedules of reinforcement. Omission training was identical to delay, except that the emission of an eyeblink conditioned response (CR) resulted in omission of the unconditioned airpuff stimulus (US) on that trial. Each subject in the yoked group was matched on total BI score to a subject in the omission group, and received the same schedule of CS and US delivery, resulting in a partial reinforcement training schedule. Delay conditioning elicited significantly more CRs compared to the omission and yoked contingencies, the latter two of which did not differ from each other. Thus, acquisition of an avoidance response was not apparent. BI individuals demonstrated enhanced acquisition overall, while partial reinforcement training significantly distinguished between BI and NI groups. Enhanced learning in BI may be a function of an increased defensive learning capacity, or sensitivity to uncertainty. Further work examining the influence of BI on learning acquisition is important for understanding individual differences in disorder etiology in anxiety vulnerable cohorts.

  11. Phanerochaete mutants with enhanced ligninolytic activity

    SciTech Connect

    Kakar, S.N.; Perez, A.; Gonzales, J.

    1993-06-01

    In addition to lignin, the white rot fungus Phanerochaete chrysosporium has the ability to degrade a wide spectrum of recalcitrant organopollutants in soils and aqueous media. Although some of the organic compounds are degraded under nonligninolytic conditions, most are degraded under ligninolytic conditions with the involvement of the extracellular enzymes, lignin peroxidases, and manganese-dependent peroxidases, which are produced as secondary metabolites triggered by conditions of nutrient starvation (e.g., nitrogen limitation). The fungus and its enzymes can thus provide alternative technologies for bioremediation, biopulping, biobleaching, and other industrial applications. The efficiency and effectiveness of the fungus can be enhanced by increasing production and secretion of the important enzymes in large quantities and as primary metabolites under enriched conditions. One way this can be achieved is through isolation of mutants that are deregulated or are hyperproducers or supersecretors of key enzymes under enriched conditions. Through ultraviolet-light and gamma-rays mutagenesis we have isolated a variety of mutants, some of which produce key enzymes of the ligninolytic system under high-nitrogen growth conditions. One of the mutants produced 272 units (U) of lignin peroxidases enzyme activity per liter after nine days under high nitrogen. The mutant and the parent strains produced up to 54 U/L and 62 U/L, respectively, of the enzyme activity under low-nitrogen growth conditions during this period. In some experiments the mutant showed 281 U/L of enzyme activity under high nitrogen after 17 days.

  12. How Soluble GARP Enhances TGFβ Activation

    PubMed Central

    Fridrich, Sven; Hahn, Susanne A.; Linzmaier, Marion; Felten, Matthias; Zwarg, Jenny; Lennerz, Volker; Tuettenberg, Andrea; Stöcker, Walter

    2016-01-01

    GARP (glycoprotein A repetitions predominant) is a cell surface receptor on regulatory T-lymphocytes, platelets, hepatic stellate cells and certain cancer cells. Its described function is the binding and accommodation of latent TGFβ (transforming growth factor), before the activation and release of the mature cytokine. For regulatory T cells it was shown that a knockdown of GARP or a treatment with blocking antibodies dramatically decreases their immune suppressive capacity. This confirms a fundamental role of GARP in the basic function of regulatory T cells. Prerequisites postulated for physiological GARP function include membrane anchorage of GARP, disulfide bridges between the propeptide of TGFβ and GARP and connection of this propeptide to αvβ6 or αvβ8 integrins of target cells during mechanical TGFβ release. Other studies indicate the existence of soluble GARP complexes and a functionality of soluble GARP alone. In order to clarify the underlying molecular mechanism, we expressed and purified recombinant TGFβ and a soluble variant of GARP. Surprisingly, soluble GARP and TGFβ formed stable non-covalent complexes in addition to disulfide-coupled complexes, depending on the redox conditions of the microenvironment. We also show that soluble GARP alone and the two variants of complexes mediate different levels of TGFβ activity. TGFβ activation is enhanced by the non-covalent GARP-TGFβ complex already at low (nanomolar) concentrations, at which GARP alone does not show any effect. This supports the idea of soluble GARP acting as immune modulator in vivo. PMID:27054568

  13. How Soluble GARP Enhances TGFβ Activation.

    PubMed

    Fridrich, Sven; Hahn, Susanne A; Linzmaier, Marion; Felten, Matthias; Zwarg, Jenny; Lennerz, Volker; Tuettenberg, Andrea; Stöcker, Walter

    2016-01-01

    GARP (glycoprotein A repetitions predominant) is a cell surface receptor on regulatory T-lymphocytes, platelets, hepatic stellate cells and certain cancer cells. Its described function is the binding and accommodation of latent TGFβ (transforming growth factor), before the activation and release of the mature cytokine. For regulatory T cells it was shown that a knockdown of GARP or a treatment with blocking antibodies dramatically decreases their immune suppressive capacity. This confirms a fundamental role of GARP in the basic function of regulatory T cells. Prerequisites postulated for physiological GARP function include membrane anchorage of GARP, disulfide bridges between the propeptide of TGFβ and GARP and connection of this propeptide to αvβ6 or αvβ8 integrins of target cells during mechanical TGFβ release. Other studies indicate the existence of soluble GARP complexes and a functionality of soluble GARP alone. In order to clarify the underlying molecular mechanism, we expressed and purified recombinant TGFβ and a soluble variant of GARP. Surprisingly, soluble GARP and TGFβ formed stable non-covalent complexes in addition to disulfide-coupled complexes, depending on the redox conditions of the microenvironment. We also show that soluble GARP alone and the two variants of complexes mediate different levels of TGFβ activity. TGFβ activation is enhanced by the non-covalent GARP-TGFβ complex already at low (nanomolar) concentrations, at which GARP alone does not show any effect. This supports the idea of soluble GARP acting as immune modulator in vivo. PMID:27054568

  14. The significant adhesion enhancement of Ag-polytetrafluoroethylene antibacterial coatings by using of molecular bridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Ruijie; Yin, Guangda; Sha, Xiaojuan; Zhao, Qi; Wei, Liqiao; Wang, Huifang

    2015-06-01

    Weak adhesion between the metal-based antibacterial coatings and polymer substrates limits their clinical applications; surface modification is an effective way to solve this intrinsic problem. In this study, UV irradiation was employed to activate the inert silicon rubber substrates, and the grafting of coupling agent (3-mercaptopropyl) trimethoxy silane into the UV-irradiated substrates generated reactive surface containing sbnd SH groups. During electroless plating S which has lone pair electrons anchored Ag+ and produced antibacterial coatings with improved adhesion. The grafting of (3-mercaptopropyl) trimethoxy silane into silicon rubber was verified by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The adhesion was tested by American Society of Testing Materials (ASTM D 3359-02). Surface elements content and distribution were observed and analyzed by X-ray energy disperse spectroscopy (EDS). The antibacterial performance was characterized by inhibition halo test and shake flash method. The results showed that the as-prepared composite Ag-polytetrafluoroethylene coatings possessed remarkably enhanced adhesion and superior antibacterial activity.

  15. Complete Au@ZnO core-shell nanoparticles with enhanced plasmonic absorption enabling significantly improved photocatalysis.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yiqiang; Sun, Yugang; Zhang, Tao; Chen, Guozhu; Zhang, Fengshou; Liu, Dilong; Cai, Weiping; Li, Yue; Yang, Xianfeng; Li, Cuncheng

    2016-05-19

    Nanostructured ZnO exhibits high chemical stability and unique optical properties, representing a promising candidate among photocatalysts in the field of environmental remediation and solar energy conversion. However, ZnO only absorbs the UV light, which accounts for less than 5% of total solar irradiation, significantly limiting its applications. In this article, we report a facile and efficient approach to overcome the poor wettability between ZnO and Au by carefully modulating the surface charge density on Au nanoparticles (NPs), enabling rapid synthesis of Au@ZnO core-shell NPs at room temperature. The resulting Au@ZnO core-shell NPs exhibit a significantly enhanced plasmonic absorption in the visible range due to the Au NP cores. They also show a significantly improved photocatalytic performance in comparison with their single-component counterparts, i.e., the Au NPs and ZnO NPs. Moreover, the high catalytic activity of the as-synthesized Au@ZnO core-shell NPs can be maintained even after many cycles of photocatalytic reaction. Our results shed light on the fact that the Au@ZnO core-shell NPs represent a promising class of candidates for applications in plasmonics, surface-enhanced spectroscopy, light harvest devices, solar energy conversion, and degradation of organic pollutants. PMID:27160795

  16. The novel dipeptide Tyr-Ala (TA) significantly enhances the lifespan and healthspan of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Z; Zhao, Y; Wang, X; Lin, R; Zhang, Y; Ma, H; Guo, Y; Xu, L; Zhao, B

    2016-04-01

    Food-derived bioactive peptides may have various physiological modulatory and regulatory functions and are now being studied extensively. Recently, the novel dipeptide Tyr-Ala was isolated from hydrolyzed maize protein. Tyr-Ala significantly prolonged the lifespan of wild-type Caenorhabditis elegans and extended the nematode healthspan and lifespan during heat/oxidative stress. Compared with its constituent amino acids, Tyr-Ala was more efficient in enhancing stress resistance. Further studies demonstrated that the significant longevity-extending effects of Tyr-Ala on Caenorhabditis elegans were attributed to its in vitro and in vivo free radical-scavenging effects, in addition to its ability to up-regulate stress resistance-related proteins, such as SOD (Superoxide Dismutase)-3 and HSP (Heat Shock Protein)-16.2. Real-time PCR results showed that the up-regulation of aging-associated genes, such as daf-16, sod-3, hsp-16.2 and skn-1, also contributed to the stress-resistance effect of Tyr-Ala. These results indicate that the novel dipeptide Tyr-Ala can protect against external stress and thus extend the lifespan and healthspan of Caenorhabditis elegans. Thereby, Tyr-Ala could be used as a potential medicine in anti-aging research. PMID:26987062

  17. Weak magnetic field significantly enhances selenite removal kinetics by zero valent iron.

    PubMed

    Liang, Liping; Sun, Wu; Guan, Xiaohong; Huang, Yuying; Choi, Wonyong; Bao, Hongliang; Li, Lina; Jiang, Zheng

    2014-02-01

    The effect of weak magnetic field (WMF) on Se(IV) removal by zero valent iron (ZVI) was investigated as functions of pH and initial Se(IV) concentrations. The presence of WMF significantly accelerated Se(IV) removal and extended the working pH range of ZVI from 4.0-6.0 to 4.0-7.2. The WMF induced greater enhancement in Se(IV) removal by ZVI at lower initial Se(IV) concentrations. The influence of WMF on Se(IV) removal by ZVI was associated with a more dramatic drop in ORP and a more rapid release of Fe(2+) compared to the case without WMF. SEM and XRD analysis revealed that WMF accelerated the corrosion of ZVI and the transformation of amorphous iron (hdyr)oxides to lepidocrocite. XANES analyses showed that WMF expedited the reduction of Se(IV) to Se(0) by ZVI at pH 6.0 when its initial concentration was ≤20.0 mg L(-1). Se(IV) dosed at 40.0 mg L(-1) was removed by ZVI via adsorption followed by reduction to Se(0) at pH 7.0 but via adsorption at 7.2 in the presence of WMF. Regardless of WMF, Se(IV) applied at 40.0 mg L(-1) was removed by reduction at pH 4.0-6.0. The WMF-induced improvement in Se(IV) removal by ZVI may be mainly attributable to the Lorentz force and magnetic field gradient force. Employing WMF to enhance Se(IV) removal by ZVI is a promising and environmental-friendly method since it does not need extra energy and costly reagents.

  18. Weak magnetic field significantly enhances selenite removal kinetics by zero valent iron.

    PubMed

    Liang, Liping; Sun, Wu; Guan, Xiaohong; Huang, Yuying; Choi, Wonyong; Bao, Hongliang; Li, Lina; Jiang, Zheng

    2014-02-01

    The effect of weak magnetic field (WMF) on Se(IV) removal by zero valent iron (ZVI) was investigated as functions of pH and initial Se(IV) concentrations. The presence of WMF significantly accelerated Se(IV) removal and extended the working pH range of ZVI from 4.0-6.0 to 4.0-7.2. The WMF induced greater enhancement in Se(IV) removal by ZVI at lower initial Se(IV) concentrations. The influence of WMF on Se(IV) removal by ZVI was associated with a more dramatic drop in ORP and a more rapid release of Fe(2+) compared to the case without WMF. SEM and XRD analysis revealed that WMF accelerated the corrosion of ZVI and the transformation of amorphous iron (hdyr)oxides to lepidocrocite. XANES analyses showed that WMF expedited the reduction of Se(IV) to Se(0) by ZVI at pH 6.0 when its initial concentration was ≤20.0 mg L(-1). Se(IV) dosed at 40.0 mg L(-1) was removed by ZVI via adsorption followed by reduction to Se(0) at pH 7.0 but via adsorption at 7.2 in the presence of WMF. Regardless of WMF, Se(IV) applied at 40.0 mg L(-1) was removed by reduction at pH 4.0-6.0. The WMF-induced improvement in Se(IV) removal by ZVI may be mainly attributable to the Lorentz force and magnetic field gradient force. Employing WMF to enhance Se(IV) removal by ZVI is a promising and environmental-friendly method since it does not need extra energy and costly reagents. PMID:24199999

  19. ZnO nanowire/reduced graphene oxide nanocomposites for significantly enhanced photocatalytic degradation of Rhodamine 6G

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Chao; Zhang, Jing; Su, Yanjie; Xu, Minghan; Yang, Zhi; Zhang, Yafei

    2014-02-01

    We have demonstrated a facile and low-cost approach to synthesize ZnO nanowire (NW)/reduced graphene oxide (RGO) nanocomposites, in which ZnO NWs and graphene oxide (GO) were produced in large scale separately and then hybridized into ZnO NW/RGO nanocomposites by mechanical mixing and low-temperature thermal reduction. Rhodamine 6G (Rh6G) was used as a model dye to evaluate the photocatalytic properties of ZnO NW/RGO nanocomposites. The obtained nanocomposites show significantly enhanced photocatalytic performance, which took only 10 min to decompose over 98% Rh6G. Finally the mechanism of the great enhancement about photocatalytic activity of ZnO NW/RGO nanocomposites is studied. It is mainly attributed to that RGO nanosheets can transfer the electrons of ZnO NWs excited by ultraviolet (UV) irradiation, increase electron migration efficiency, and then longer the lifetime of the holes in ZnO NWs. The high charge separation efficiency of photo-generated electron-hole pairs directly leads to the lower recombination rate of ZnO NW/RGO nanocomposites, makes more effective electrons and holes to participate the radical reactions with Rh6G, thus significantly improving the photocatalytic properties. The high degradation efficiency makes the ZnO NW/RGO nanocomposites promising candidates in the application of environmental pollutant and wastewater treatment.

  20. Significant Broadband Photocurrent Enhancement by Au-CZTS Core-Shell Nanostructured Photocathodes

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xuemei; Wu, Xu; Centeno, Anthony; Ryan, Mary P.; Alford, Neil M.; Riley, D. Jason; Xie, Fang

    2016-01-01

    Copper zinc tin sulfide (CZTS) is a promising material for harvesting solar energy due to its abundance and non-toxicity. However, its poor performance hinders their wide application. In this paper gold (Au) nanoparticles are successfully incorporated into CZTS to form Au@CZTS core-shell nanostructures. The photocathode of Au@CZTS nanostructures exhibits enhanced optical absorption characteristics and improved incident photon-to-current efficiency (IPCE) performance. It is demonstrated that using this photocathode there is a significant increase of the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of a photoelectrochemical solar cell of 100% compared to using a CZTS without Au core. More importantly, the PCE of Au@CZTS photocathode improved by 15.8% compared to standard platinum (Pt) counter electrode. The increased efficiency is attributed to plasmon resonance energy transfer (PRET) between the Au nanoparticle core and the CZTS shell at wavelengths shorter than the localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) peak of the Au and the semiconductor bandgap. PMID:26997140

  1. Affective significance enhances covert attention: roles of anxiety and word familiarity.

    PubMed

    Calvo, Manuel G; Eysenck, Michael W

    2008-11-01

    To investigate the processing of emotional words by covert attention, threat-related, positive, and neutral word primes were presented parafoveally (2.2 degrees away from fixation) for 150 ms, under gaze-contingent foveal masking, to prevent eye fixations. The primes were followed by a probe word in a lexical-decision task. In Experiment 1, results showed a parafoveal threat-anxiety superiority: Parafoveal prime threat words facilitated responses to probe threat words for high-anxiety individuals, in comparison with neutral and positive words, and relative to low-anxiety individuals. This reveals an advantage in threat processing by covert attention, without differences in overt attention. However, anxiety was also associated with greater familiarity with threat words, and the parafoveal priming effects were significantly reduced when familiarity was covaried out. To further examine the role of word knowledge, in Experiment 2, vocabulary and word familiarity were equated for low- and high-anxiety groups. In these conditions, the parafoveal threat-anxiety advantage disappeared. This suggests that the enhanced covert-attention effect depends on familiarity with words.

  2. Significant Broadband Photocurrent Enhancement by Au-CZTS Core-Shell Nanostructured Photocathodes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xuemei; Wu, Xu; Centeno, Anthony; Ryan, Mary P; Alford, Neil M; Riley, D Jason; Xie, Fang

    2016-01-01

    Copper zinc tin sulfide (CZTS) is a promising material for harvesting solar energy due to its abundance and non-toxicity. However, its poor performance hinders their wide application. In this paper gold (Au) nanoparticles are successfully incorporated into CZTS to form Au@CZTS core-shell nanostructures. The photocathode of Au@CZTS nanostructures exhibits enhanced optical absorption characteristics and improved incident photon-to-current efficiency (IPCE) performance. It is demonstrated that using this photocathode there is a significant increase of the power conversion efficiency (PCE) of a photoelectrochemical solar cell of 100% compared to using a CZTS without Au core. More importantly, the PCE of Au@CZTS photocathode improved by 15.8% compared to standard platinum (Pt) counter electrode. The increased efficiency is attributed to plasmon resonance energy transfer (PRET) between the Au nanoparticle core and the CZTS shell at wavelengths shorter than the localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) peak of the Au and the semiconductor bandgap. PMID:26997140

  3. Significant enhancement of the superconducting properties of MgB2 by polyvinyl alcohol additives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, R.; Lu, L.; Dou, S. X.

    2008-08-01

    We report a systematic study of the effects of polymer addition on the lattice parameters, microstructure and superconducting properties of MgB2. Polyvinyl alcohol [-C2H4O-]n (PVA) as a typical polymer was used as an additive to MgB2. It was found that PVA additions have the following features: (1) the polymer can have a very low oxygen (O) content or even none at all, and PVA has a low O content (C:O = 2:1), which reduces the impurities brought into MgB2 from the doping, and (2) PVA decomposes at a temperature of 400-650 °C, which means that the reaction occurs in the same temperature range as MgB2 formation, providing highly reactive C, which homogeneously substitutes for B at this low-temperature range. The above considerations significantly enhance the critical current, Jc, the irreversibility field, Hirr, and the upper critical field, Hc2, of MgB2 compared to un-doped samples or those doped with other carbon sources. In this work, suitable PVA doping levels improved both the connectivity and flux pinning, so that the Jc of PVA-doped MgB2 was improved over the whole field range.

  4. Nanoporosity Significantly Enhances the Biological Performance of Engineered Glass Tissue Scaffolds

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shaojie; Kowal, Tia J.; Marei, Mona K.

    2013-01-01

    Nanoporosity is known to impact the performance of implants and scaffolds such as bioactive glass (BG) scaffolds, either by providing a higher concentration of bioactive chemical species from enhanced surface area, or due to inherent nanoscale topology, or both. To delineate the role of these two characteristics, BG scaffolds have been fabricated with nearly identical surface area (81 and 83±2 m2/g) but significantly different pore size (av. 3.7 and 17.7 nm) by varying both the sintering temperature and the ammonia concentration during the solvent exchange phase of the sol-gel fabrication process. In vitro tests performed with MC3T3-E1 preosteoblast cells on such scaffolds show that initial cell attachment is increased on samples with the smaller nanopore size, providing the first direct evidence of the influence of nanopore topography on cell response to a bioactive structure. Furthermore, in vivo animal tests in New Zealand rabbits (subcutaneous implantation) indicate that nanopores promote colonization and cell penetration into these scaffolds, further demonstrating the favorable effects of nanopores in tissue-engineering-relevant BG scaffolds. PMID:23427819

  5. Affective significance enhances covert attention: roles of anxiety and word familiarity.

    PubMed

    Calvo, Manuel G; Eysenck, Michael W

    2008-11-01

    To investigate the processing of emotional words by covert attention, threat-related, positive, and neutral word primes were presented parafoveally (2.2 degrees away from fixation) for 150 ms, under gaze-contingent foveal masking, to prevent eye fixations. The primes were followed by a probe word in a lexical-decision task. In Experiment 1, results showed a parafoveal threat-anxiety superiority: Parafoveal prime threat words facilitated responses to probe threat words for high-anxiety individuals, in comparison with neutral and positive words, and relative to low-anxiety individuals. This reveals an advantage in threat processing by covert attention, without differences in overt attention. However, anxiety was also associated with greater familiarity with threat words, and the parafoveal priming effects were significantly reduced when familiarity was covaried out. To further examine the role of word knowledge, in Experiment 2, vocabulary and word familiarity were equated for low- and high-anxiety groups. In these conditions, the parafoveal threat-anxiety advantage disappeared. This suggests that the enhanced covert-attention effect depends on familiarity with words. PMID:18942034

  6. Nanoparticle-enhanced electrical impedance detection and its potential significance in image tomography

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Ran; Jin, Cuiyun; Song, Fengjuan; Liu, Jing

    2013-01-01

    The conductivity and permittivity of tumors are known to differ significantly from those of normal tissues. Electrical impedance tomography (EIT) is a relatively new imaging method for exploiting these differences. However, the accuracy of data capture is one of the difficult problems urgently to be solved in the clinical application of EIT technology. A new concept of EIT sensitizers is put forward in this paper with the goal of expanding the contrast ratio of tumor and healthy tissue to enhance EIT imaging quality. The use of nanoparticles for changing tumor characteristics and determining the infiltration vector for easier detection has been widely accepted in the biomedical field. Ultra-pure water, normal saline, and gold nanoparticles, three kinds of material with large differences in electrical characteristics, are considered as sensitizers and undergo mathematical model analysis and animal experimentation. Our preliminary results suggest that nanoparticles are promising for sensitization work. Furthermore, in experimental and simulation results, we found that we should select different sensitizers for the detection of different types and stages of tumor. PMID:23319858

  7. Enhanced fluoride sorption by mechanochemically activated kaolinites.

    PubMed

    Meenakshi, S; Sundaram, C Sairam; Sukumar, Rugmini

    2008-05-01

    Kaolinite clay obtained from the mines was processed and studied for its fluoride sorption capacity. The surface area of the clay mineral was increased from 15.11 m(2)/g (raw) to 32.43 m(2)/g (activated) by mechanochemical activation. Batch adsorption studies were conducted to optimize various equilibrating conditions like the effect of contact time, dosage, pH for both raw and micronized kaolinites (RK and MK). The effect of other interfering anions on the defluoridation capacity (DC) of the sorbents was studied. Sorption of fluoride by the sorbents was observed over a wide pH range of 3-11. The studies revealed there is an enhanced fluoride sorption on MK. FTIR and XRD were used for the characterization of the sorbent. The surface morphology of the clay material was observed using SEM. The adsorption of fluoride was studied at three different temperatures, viz., 303, 313 and 323 K. The sorption data obtained at optimized conditions were subjected to Freundlich and Langmuir isotherms. Sorption intensity (1/n) (0.770-0.810) has been evaluated using Freundlich isotherm, whereas the values of sorption capacity Q(0) (0.609, 0.714 and 0.782 mg/g) and binding energy b (0.158, 0.145 and 0.133 L/mg) at three different temperatures have been estimated using Langmuir isotherm. Adsorption process was found to be controlled by both Freundlich and Langmuir isotherms. Thermodynamic studies revealed that the sorption of fluoride on MK is endothermic and a spontaneous process. The kinetic studies indicate that the sorption of fluoride on MK follows pseudo-first-order and intraparticle diffusion models.

  8. Stiff substrates enhance cultured neuronal network activity

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  9. Significant metal enhanced fluorescence of Ag2S quantum dots in the second near-infrared window

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Theodorou, I. G.; Jawad, Z. A. R.; Qin, H.; Aboagye, E. O.; Porter, A. E.; Ryan, M. P.; Xie, F.

    2016-06-01

    The amplification of light in NIR-II from Ag2S QDs via metal enhanced fluorescence (MEF) is reported for the first time. Significant fluorescence enhancement of over 100 times for Ag2S QDs deposited on Au-nanostructured arrays, paves the way for novel sensing and imaging applications based on Ag2S QDs, with improved detection sensitivity and contrast enhancement.The amplification of light in NIR-II from Ag2S QDs via metal enhanced fluorescence (MEF) is reported for the first time. Significant fluorescence enhancement of over 100 times for Ag2S QDs deposited on Au-nanostructured arrays, paves the way for novel sensing and imaging applications based on Ag2S QDs, with improved detection sensitivity and contrast enhancement. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Detailed description of experimental methods. See DOI: 10.1039/c6nr03220f

  10. Significant metal enhanced fluorescence of Ag2S quantum dots in the second near-infrared window.

    PubMed

    Theodorou, I G; Jawad, Z A R; Qin, H; Aboagye, E O; Porter, A E; Ryan, M P; Xie, F

    2016-07-14

    The amplification of light in NIR-II from Ag2S QDs via metal enhanced fluorescence (MEF) is reported for the first time. Significant fluorescence enhancement of over 100 times for Ag2S QDs deposited on Au-nanostructured arrays, paves the way for novel sensing and imaging applications based on Ag2S QDs, with improved detection sensitivity and contrast enhancement. PMID:27314986

  11. Active acromegaly enhances spontaneous parathyroid hormone pulsatility.

    PubMed

    Mazziotti, Gherardo; Cimino, Vincenzo; De Menis, Ernesto; Bonadonna, Stefania; Bugari, Giovanna; De Marinis, Laura; Veldhuis, Johannes D; Giustina, Andrea

    2006-06-01

    In healthy subjects, parathyroid hormone (PTH) is secreted in a dual fashion, with low-amplitude and high-frequency pulses superimposed on tonic secretion. These 2 components of PTH secretion seem to have different effects on target organs. The aim of our study was to evaluate whether growth hormone excess in acromegaly may modify the spontaneous pulsatility of PTH. Five male patients with newly diagnosed active acromegaly and 8 healthy subjects were evaluated by 3-minute blood sampling for 6 hours. Plasma PTH concentrations were evaluated by multiparameter deconvolution analysis. Plasma PTH release profiles were also subjected to an approximate entropy (ApEn) estimate, which provides an ensemble measure of the serial regularity or orderliness of the release process. In acromegalic patients, baseline serum PTH values were not significantly different from those measured in the healthy subjects, as well as tonic PTH secretion rate, number of bursts, fractional pulsatile PTH secretion, and ApEn ratio. Conversely, PTH pulse half-duration was significantly longer in acromegalic patients vs healthy subjects (11.8+/-0.95 vs 6.9+/-1.6 minutes; P=.05), whereas PTH pulse mass showed a tendency (P=.06) to be significantly greater in acromegalic patients. These preliminary data suggest that growth hormone excess may affect PTH secretory dynamics in patients with acromegaly. Potentially negative bone effects of the modifications of PTH secretory pattern in acromegaly should be investigated.

  12. Evaluating research for clinical significance: using critically appraised topics to enhance evidence-based neuropsychology.

    PubMed

    Bowden, Stephen C; Harrison, Elise J; Loring, David W

    2014-01-01

    Meehl's (1973, Psychodiagnosis: Selected papers. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press) distinction between statistical and clinical significance holds special relevance for evidence-based neuropsychological practice. Meehl argued that despite attaining statistical significance, many published findings have limited practical value since they do not inform clinical care. In the context of an ever expanding clinical research literature, accessible methods to evaluate clinical impact are needed. The method of Critically Appraised Topics (Straus, Richardson, Glasziou, & Haynes, 2011, Evidence-based medicine: How to practice and teach EBM (4th ed.). Edinburgh: Elsevier Churchill-Livingstone) was developed to provide clinicians with a "toolkit" to facilitate implementation of evidence-based practice. We illustrate the Critically Appraised Topics method using a dementia screening example. We argue that the skills practiced through critical appraisal provide clinicians with methods to: (1) evaluate the clinical relevance of new or unfamiliar research findings with a focus on patient benefit, (2) help focus of research quality, and (3) incorporate evaluation of clinical impact into educational and professional development activities.

  13. Electrophoretic Particle Guidance Significantly Enhances Olfactory Drug Delivery: A Feasibility Study

    PubMed Central

    Xi, Jinxiang; Si, Xiuhua A.; Gaide, Rachel

    2014-01-01

    Background Intranasal olfactory drug delivery provides a non-invasive method that bypasses the Blood-Brain-Barrier and directly delivers medication to the brain and spinal cord. However, a device designed specifically for olfactory delivery has not yet been found. Methods In this study, a new delivery method was proposed that utilized electrophoretic forces to guide drug particles to the olfactory region. The feasibility of this method was numerically evaluated in both idealized 2-D and anatomically accurate 3-D nose models. The influence of nasal airflow, electrode strength, and drug release position were also studied on the olfactory delivery efficiency. Findings Results showed that by applying electrophoretic forces, the dosage to the olfactory region was significantly enhanced. In both 2-D and 3-D cases, electrophoretic-guided delivery achieved olfactory dosages nearly two orders of magnitude higher than that without electrophoretic forces. Furthermore, releasing drugs into the upper half of the nostril (i.e., partial release) led to olfactory dosages two times higher than releasing drugs over the entire area of the nostril. By combining the advantages of pointed drug release and appropriate electrophoretic guidance, olfactory dosages of more than 90% were observed as compared to the extremely low olfactory dosage (<1%) with conventional inhaler devices. Conclusion Results of this study have important implications in developing personalized olfactory delivery protocols for the treatment of neurological disorders. Moreover, a high sensitivity of olfactory dosage was observed in relation to different pointed release positions, indicating the importance of precise particle guidance for effective olfactory delivery. PMID:24497957

  14. Inhibition of autophagy enhances the anticancer activity of silver nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Jun; Huang, Zhihai; Wu, Hao; Zhou, Wei; Jin, Peipei; Wei, Pengfei; Zhang, Yunjiao; Zheng, Fang; Zhang, Jiqian; Xu, Jing; Hu, Yi; Wang, Yanhong; Li, Yajuan; Gu, Ning; Wen, Longping

    2014-01-01

    Silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) are cytotoxic to cancer cells and possess excellent potential as an antitumor agent. A variety of nanoparticles have been shown to induce autophagy, a critical cellular degradation process, and the elevated autophagy in most of these situations promotes cell death. Whether Ag NPs can induce autophagy and how it might affect the anticancer activity of Ag NPs has not been reported. Here we show that Ag NPs induced autophagy in cancer cells by activating the PtdIns3K signaling pathway. The autophagy induced by Ag NPs was characterized by enhanced autophagosome formation, normal cargo degradation, and no disruption of lysosomal function. Consistent with these properties, the autophagy induced by Ag NPs promoted cell survival, as inhibition of autophagy by either chemical inhibitors or ATG5 siRNA enhanced Ag NPs-elicited cancer cell killing. We further demonstrated that wortmannin, a widely used inhibitor of autophagy, significantly enhanced the antitumor effect of Ag NPs in the B16 mouse melanoma cell model. Our results revealed a novel biological activity of Ag NPs in inducing cytoprotective autophagy, and inhibition of autophagy may be a useful strategy for improving the efficacy of Ag NPs in anticancer therapy. PMID:25484080

  15. Complete Au@ZnO core-shell nanoparticles with enhanced plasmonic absorption enabling significantly improved photocatalysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Yiqiang; Sun, Yugang; Zhang, Tao; Chen, Guozhu; Zhang, Fengshou; Liu, Dilong; Cai, Weiping; Li, Yue; Yang, Xianfeng; Li, Cuncheng

    2016-05-01

    Nanostructured ZnO exhibits high chemical stability and unique optical properties, representing a promising candidate among photocatalysts in the field of environmental remediation and solar energy conversion. However, ZnO only absorbs the UV light, which accounts for less than 5% of total solar irradiation, significantly limiting its applications. In this article, we report a facile and efficient approach to overcome the poor wettability between ZnO and Au by carefully modulating the surface charge density on Au nanoparticles (NPs), enabling rapid synthesis of Au@ZnO core-shell NPs at room temperature. The resulting Au@ZnO core-shell NPs exhibit a significantly enhanced plasmonic absorption in the visible range due to the Au NP cores. They also show a significantly improved photocatalytic performance in comparison with their single-component counterparts, i.e., the Au NPs and ZnO NPs. Moreover, the high catalytic activity of the as-synthesized Au@ZnO core-shell NPs can be maintained even after many cycles of photocatalytic reaction. Our results shed light on the fact that the Au@ZnO core-shell NPs represent a promising class of candidates for applications in plasmonics, surface-enhanced spectroscopy, light harvest devices, solar energy conversion, and degradation of organic pollutants.Nanostructured ZnO exhibits high chemical stability and unique optical properties, representing a promising candidate among photocatalysts in the field of environmental remediation and solar energy conversion. However, ZnO only absorbs the UV light, which accounts for less than 5% of total solar irradiation, significantly limiting its applications. In this article, we report a facile and efficient approach to overcome the poor wettability between ZnO and Au by carefully modulating the surface charge density on Au nanoparticles (NPs), enabling rapid synthesis of Au@ZnO core-shell NPs at room temperature. The resulting Au@ZnO core-shell NPs exhibit a significantly enhanced plasmonic

  16. High-throughput functional comparison of promoter and enhancer activities.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Thomas A; Jones, Richard D; Snavely, Andrew R; Pfenning, Andreas R; Kirchner, Rory; Hemberg, Martin; Gray, Jesse M

    2016-08-01

    Promoters initiate RNA synthesis, and enhancers stimulate promoter activity. Whether promoter and enhancer activities are encoded distinctly in DNA sequences is unknown. We measured the enhancer and promoter activities of thousands of DNA fragments transduced into mouse neurons. We focused on genomic loci bound by the neuronal activity-regulated coactivator CREBBP, and we measured enhancer and promoter activities both before and after neuronal activation. We find that the same sequences typically encode both enhancer and promoter activities. However, gene promoters generate more promoter activity than distal enhancers, despite generating similar enhancer activity. Surprisingly, the greater promoter activity of gene promoters is not due to conventional core promoter elements or splicing signals. Instead, we find that particular transcription factor binding motifs are intrinsically biased toward the generation of promoter activity, whereas others are not. Although the specific biases we observe may be dependent on experimental or cellular context, our results suggest that gene promoters are distinguished from distal enhancers by specific complements of transcriptional activators. PMID:27311442

  17. Coordinated Neuronal Activity Enhances Corticocortical Communication.

    PubMed

    Zandvakili, Amin; Kohn, Adam

    2015-08-19

    Relaying neural signals between cortical areas is central to cognition and sensory processing. The temporal coordination of activity in a source population has been suggested to determine corticocortical signaling efficacy, but others have argued that coordination is functionally irrelevant. We reasoned that if coordination significantly influenced signaling, spiking in downstream networks should be preceded by transiently elevated coordination in a source population. We developed a metric to quantify network coordination in brief epochs, and applied it to simultaneous recordings of neuronal populations in cortical areas V1 and V2 of the macaque monkey. Spiking in the input layers of V2 was preceded by brief epochs of elevated V1 coordination, but this was not the case in other layers of V2. Our results indicate that V1 coordination influences its signaling to direct downstream targets, but that coordinated V1 epochs do not propagate through multiple downstream networks as in some corticocortical signaling schemes. PMID:26291164

  18. Adenovirus-Mediated Gene Transfer in Mesenchymal Stem Cells Can Be Significantly Enhanced by the Cationic Polymer Polybrene

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Chen; Wu, Ningning; Deng, Fang; Zhang, Hongmei; Wang, Ning; Zhang, Wenwen; Chen, Xian; Wen, Sheng; Zhang, Junhui; Yin, Liangjun; Liao, Zhan; Zhang, Zhonglin; Zhang, Qian; Yan, Zhengjian; Liu, Wei; Wu, Di; Ye, Jixing; Deng, Youlin; Zhou, Guolin; Luu, Hue H.; Haydon, Rex C.; Si, Weike; He, Tong-Chuan

    2014-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multipotent progenitors, which can undergo self-renewal and give rise to multi-lineages. A great deal of attentions have been paid to their potential use in regenerative medicine as potential therapeutic genes can be introduced into MSCs. Genetic manipulations in MSCs requires effective gene deliveries. Recombinant adenoviruses are widely used gene transfer vectors. We have found that although MSCs can be infected in vitro by adenoviruses, high virus titers are needed to achieve high efficiency. Here, we investigate if the commonly-used cationic polymer Polybrene can potentiate adenovirus-mediated transgene delivery into MSCs, such as C2C12 cells and iMEFs. Using the AdRFP adenovirus, we find that AdRFP transduction efficiency is significantly increased by Polybrene in a dose-dependent fashion peaking at 8 μg/ml in C2C12 and iMEFs cells. Quantitative luciferase assay reveals that Polybrene significantly enhances AdFLuc-mediated luciferase activity in C2C12 and iMEFs at as low as 4 μg/ml and 2 μg/ml, respectively. FACS analysis indicates that Polybrene (at 4 μg/ml) increases the percentage of RFP-positive cells by approximately 430 folds in AdRFP-transduced iMEFs, suggesting Polybrene may increase adenovirus infection efficiency. Furthermore, Polybrene can enhance AdBMP9-induced osteogenic differentiation of MSCs as early osteogenic marker alkaline phosphatase activity can be increased more than 73 folds by Polybrene (4 μg/ml) in AdBMP9-transduced iMEFs. No cytotoxicity was observed in C2C12 and iMEFs at Polybrene up to 40 μg/ml, which is about 10-fold higher than the effective concentration required to enhance adenovirus transduction in MSCs. Taken together, our results demonstrate that Polybrene should be routinely used as a safe, effective and inexpensive augmenting agent for adenovirus-mediated gene transfer in MSCs, as well as other types of mammalian cells. PMID:24658746

  19. Schistosomes Enhance Plasminogen Activation: The Role of Tegumental Enolase.

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Barbara C; Da'dara, Akram A; Oliveira, Sergio C; Skelly, Patrick J

    2015-12-01

    Schistosoma mansoni is a blood fluke parasite that causes schistosomiasis, a debilitating disease of global public health importance. These relatively large parasites are able to survive prolonged periods in the human vasculature without inducing stable blood clots around them. We show here that the intravascular life stages (schistosomula and adult males and females) can all promote significant plasminogen (PLMG) activation in the presence of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA). This results in the generation of the potent fibrinolytic agent plasmin which could degrade blood clots forming around the worms in vivo. We demonstrate that S. mansoni enolase (SmEno) is a host-interactive tegumental enzyme that, in recombinant form, can bind PLMG and promote its activation. Like classical members of the enolase protein family, SmEno can catalyze the interconversion of 2-phospho-D-glycerate (2-PGA) and phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP). The enzyme has maximal activity at pH 7.5, requires Mg2+ for optimal activity and can be inhibited by NaF but not mefloquin. Suppressing expression of the SmEno gene significantly diminishes enolase mRNA levels, protein levels and surface enzyme activity but, surprisingly, does not affect the ability of the worms to promote PLMG activation. Thus, while SmEno can enhance PLMG activation, our analysis suggests that it is not the only contributor to the parasite's ability to perform this function. We show that the worms possess several other PLMG-binding proteins in addition to SmEno and these may have a greater importance in schistosome-driven PLMG activation.

  20. Schistosomes Enhance Plasminogen Activation: The Role of Tegumental Enolase

    PubMed Central

    Figueiredo, Barbara C.; Da'dara, Akram A.; Oliveira, Sergio C.; Skelly, Patrick J.

    2015-01-01

    Schistosoma mansoni is a blood fluke parasite that causes schistosomiasis, a debilitating disease of global public health importance. These relatively large parasites are able to survive prolonged periods in the human vasculature without inducing stable blood clots around them. We show here that the intravascular life stages (schistosomula and adult males and females) can all promote significant plasminogen (PLMG) activation in the presence of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA). This results in the generation of the potent fibrinolytic agent plasmin which could degrade blood clots forming around the worms in vivo. We demonstrate that S. mansoni enolase (SmEno) is a host-interactive tegumental enzyme that, in recombinant form, can bind PLMG and promote its activation. Like classical members of the enolase protein family, SmEno can catalyze the interconversion of 2-phospho-D-glycerate (2-PGA) and phosphoenolpyruvate (PEP). The enzyme has maximal activity at pH 7.5, requires Mg2+ for optimal activity and can be inhibited by NaF but not mefloquin. Suppressing expression of the SmEno gene significantly diminishes enolase mRNA levels, protein levels and surface enzyme activity but, surprisingly, does not affect the ability of the worms to promote PLMG activation. Thus, while SmEno can enhance PLMG activation, our analysis suggests that it is not the only contributor to the parasite’s ability to perform this function. We show that the worms possess several other PLMG-binding proteins in addition to SmEno and these may have a greater importance in schistosome-driven PLMG activation. PMID:26658895

  1. [The Effect of Transcription on Enhancer Activity in Drosophila melanogaster].

    PubMed

    Erokhin, M M; Davydova, A I; Lomaev, D V; Georgiev, P G; Chetverina, D A

    2016-01-01

    In higher eukaryotes, the level of gene transcription is under the control of DNA regulatory elements, such as promoter, from which transcription is initiated with the participation of RNA polymerase II and general transcription factors, as well as the enhancer, which increase the rate of transcription with the involvement of activator proteins and cofactors. It was demonstrated that enhancers are often located in the transcribed regions of the genome. We showed earlier that transcription negatively affected the activity of enhancers in Drosophila in model transgenic systems. In this study, we tested the effect of the distance between the leading promoter, enhancer, and target promoter on the inhibitory effect of transcriptions of different strengths. It was demonstrated that the negative effect of transcription remained, but weakened with increased distance between the leading promoter and enhancer and with decreased distance between the enhancer and target promoter. Thus, transcription can modulate the activity of enhancers by controlling its maximum level.

  2. Growth enhancement and gene expression of Arabidopsis thaliana irradiated with active oxygen species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watanabe, Satoshi; Ono, Reoto; Hayashi, Nobuya; Shiratani, Masaharu; Tashiro, Kosuke; Kuhara, Satoru; Inoue, Asami; Yasuda, Kaori; Hagiwara, Hiroko

    2016-07-01

    The characteristics of plant growth enhancement effect and the mechanism of the enhancement induced by plasma irradiation are investigated using various active species in plasma. Active oxygen species in oxygen plasma are effective for growth enhancement of plants. DNA microarray analysis of Arabidopsis thaliana indicates that the genes coding proteins that counter oxidative stresses by eliminating active oxygen species are expressed at significantly high levels. The size of plant cells increases owing to oxygen plasma irradiation. The increases in gene expression levels and cell size suggest that the increase in the expression level of the expansin protein is essential for plant growth enhancement phenomena.

  3. Enhanced Thermoelectric Performance of Nanostructured Bi2Te3 through Significant Phonon Scattering.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lei; Chen, Zhi-Gang; Hong, Min; Han, Guang; Zou, Jin

    2015-10-28

    N-type Bi2Te3 nanostructures were synthesized using a solvothermal method and in turn sintered using sparking plasma sintering. The sintered n-type Bi2Te3 pellets reserved nanosized grains and showed an ultralow lattice thermal conductivity (∼0.2 W m(-1) K(-1)), which benefits from high-density small-angle grain boundaries accommodated by dislocations. Such a high phonon scattering leads an enhanced ZT of 0.88 at 400 K. This study provides an efficient method to enhance thermoelectric performance of thermoelectric nanomaterials through nanostructure engineering, making the as-prepared n-type nanostructured Bi2Te3 as a promising candidate for room-temperature thermoelectric power generation and Peltier cooling. PMID:26451626

  4. Enhanced Thermoelectric Performance of Nanostructured Bi2Te3 through Significant Phonon Scattering.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lei; Chen, Zhi-Gang; Hong, Min; Han, Guang; Zou, Jin

    2015-10-28

    N-type Bi2Te3 nanostructures were synthesized using a solvothermal method and in turn sintered using sparking plasma sintering. The sintered n-type Bi2Te3 pellets reserved nanosized grains and showed an ultralow lattice thermal conductivity (∼0.2 W m(-1) K(-1)), which benefits from high-density small-angle grain boundaries accommodated by dislocations. Such a high phonon scattering leads an enhanced ZT of 0.88 at 400 K. This study provides an efficient method to enhance thermoelectric performance of thermoelectric nanomaterials through nanostructure engineering, making the as-prepared n-type nanostructured Bi2Te3 as a promising candidate for room-temperature thermoelectric power generation and Peltier cooling.

  5. Image enhancement filters significantly improve reading performance for low vision observers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lawton, T. B.

    1992-01-01

    As people age, so do their photoreceptors; many photoreceptors in central vision stop functioning when a person reaches their late sixties or early seventies. Low vision observers with losses in central vision, those with age-related maculopathies, were studied. Low vision observers no longer see high spatial frequencies, being unable to resolve fine edge detail. We developed image enhancement filters to compensate for the low vision observer's losses in contrast sensitivity to intermediate and high spatial frequencies. The filters work by boosting the amplitude of the less visible intermediate spatial frequencies. The lower spatial frequencies. These image enhancement filters not only reduce the magnification needed for reading by up to 70 percent, but they also increase the observer's reading speed by 2-4 times. A summary of this research is presented.

  6. Observation of Significant Quantum Efficiency Enhancement from a Polarized Photocathode with Distributed Bragg Reflector

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Shukui; Poelker, Matthew; Stutzman, Marcy L.; Chen, Yiqiao; Moy, Aaron

    2015-09-01

    Polarized photocathodes with higher Quantum efficiency (QE) would help to reduce the technological challenge associated with producing polarized beams at milliampere levels, because less laser light would be required, which simplifies photocathode cooling requirements. And for a given amount of available laser power, higher QE would extend the photogun operating lifetime. The distributed Bragg reflector (DBR) concept was proposed to enhance the QE of strained-superlattice photocathodes by increasing the absorption of the incident photons using a Fabry-Perot cavity formed between the front surface of the photocathode and the substrate that includes a DBR, without compromising electron polarization. Here we present recent results showing QE enhancement of a GaAs/GaAsP strained-superlattice photocathode made with a DBR structure. Typically, a GaAs/GaAsP strained-superlattice photocathode without DBR provides a QE of 1%, at a laser wavelength corresponding to peak polarization. In comparison, the GaAs/GaAsP strained-superlattice photocathodes with DBR exhibited an enhancement of over 2 when the incident laser wavelength was tuned to meet the resonant condition for the Fabry-Perot resonator.

  7. Significant Enhancement of H2 Formation in Disk Galaxies under Strong Ram Pressure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henderson, Benjamin; Bekki, Kenji

    2016-05-01

    We show for the first time that H2 formation on dust grains can be enhanced in disk galaxies under strong ram pressure (RP). We numerically investigate how the time evolution of H i and H2 components in disk galaxies orbiting a group/cluster of galaxies can be influenced by the hydrodynamical interaction between the gaseous components of the galaxies and the hot intracluster medium. We find that compression of H i caused by RP increases H2 formation in disk galaxies before RP rapidly strips H i, cutting off the fuel supply and causing a drop in H2 density. We also find that the level of this H2 formation enhancement in a disk galaxy under RP depends on the mass of its host cluster dark matter halo, the initial positions and velocities of the disk galaxy, and the disk inclination angle with respect to the orbital plane. We demonstrate that dust growth is a key factor in the evolution of the H i and H2 mass in disk galaxies under strong RP. We discuss how the correlation between H2 fractions and surface gas densities of disk galaxies evolves with time in the galaxies under RP. We also discuss whether galaxy-wide star formation rates (SFRs) in cluster disk galaxies can be enhanced by RP if the SFRs depend on H2 densities.

  8. Image enhancement filters in CCTVs significantly improve reading performance for low-vision observers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawton, Teri B.

    1992-08-01

    As people age, so do their photoreceptors. If the visual system has been exposed to sufficient UV radiation combined with other precursors for age-related maculopathies (ARM), then a large number of photoreceptors in central vision stop functioning when the person reaches their late sixties and early seventies. There are channels in the visual system tuned to different bands, approximately one octave, of spatial frequencies. In low vision observers with ARM, the loss of central vision causes a loss in channels sensitive to spatial frequencies above 8 to 10 cyc/deg. Therefore, for ARM observers, words must be magnified to read normal text. I have developed image enhancement filters that compensate for the low vision observer's losses in contrast sensitivity to intermediate and high spatial frequencies. These filters automatically enhance the text displayed on closed-circuit TVs (CCTVs) and render the text in shades of gray more easily perceivable than black and white text. These filters work by boosting the amplitude of the less visible intermediate spatial frequencies more than the lower spatial frequencies. Not only do these image enhancement filters reduce the magnification needed for reading by up to 70%, they also increase the speed that can be used to read text two to four times. A short summary of this research is presented.

  9. Can aquatic worms enhance methane production from waste activated sludge?

    PubMed

    Serrano, Antonio; Hendrickx, Tim L G; Elissen, Hellen H J; Laarhoven, Bob; Buisman, Cees J N; Temmink, Hardy

    2016-07-01

    Although literature suggests that aquatic worms can help to enhance the methane production from excess activated sludge, clear evidence for this is missing. Therefore, anaerobic digestion tests were performed at 20 and at 30°C with sludge from a high-loaded membrane bioreactor, the aquatic worm Lumbriculus variegatus, feces from these worms and with mixtures of these substrates. A significant synergistic effect of the worms or their feces on methane production from the high-loaded sludge or on its digestion rate was not observed. However, a positive effect on low-loaded activated sludge, which generally has a lower anaerobic biodegradability, cannot be excluded. The results furthermore showed that the high-loaded sludge provides an excellent feed for L. variegatus, which is promising for concepts where worm biomass is considered a resource for technical grade products such as coatings and glues.

  10. Activation-induced force enhancement in human adductor pollicis.

    PubMed

    Oskouei, Ali E; Herzog, Walter

    2009-10-01

    It has been known for a long time that the steady-state isometric force after muscle stretch is bigger than the corresponding force obtained in a purely isometric contraction for electrically stimulated and maximal voluntary contractions (MVC). Recent studies using sub-maximal voluntary contractions showed that force enhancement only occurred in a sub-group of subjects suggesting that force enhancement for sub-maximal voluntary contractions has properties different from those of electrically-induced and maximal voluntary contractions. Specifically, force enhancement for sub-maximal voluntary contractions may contain an activation-dependent component that is independent of muscle stretching. To address this hypothesis, we tested for force enhancement using (i) sub-maximal electrically-induced contractions and stretch and (ii) using various activation levels preceding an isometric reference contraction at 30% of MVC (no stretch). All tests were performed on human adductor pollicis muscles. Force enhancement following stretching was found for all subjects (n=10) and all activation levels (10%, 30%, and 60% of MVC) for electrically-induced contractions. In contrast, force enhancement at 30% of MVC, preceded by 6s of 10%, 60%, and 100% of MVC was only found in a sub-set of the subjects and only for the 60% and 100% conditions. This result suggests that there is an activation-dependent force enhancement for some subjects for sub-maximal voluntary contractions. This activation-dependent force enhancement was always smaller than the stretch-induced force enhancement obtained at the corresponding activation levels. Active muscle stretching increased the force enhancement in all subjects, independent whether they showed activation dependence or not. It appears that post-activation potentiation, and the associated phosphorylation of the myosin light chains, might account for the stretch-independent force enhancement observed here.

  11. Porous carbon nitride nanosheets for enhanced photocatalytic activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Jindui; Yin, Shengming; Pan, Yunxiang; Han, Jianyu; Zhou, Tianhua; Xu, Rong

    2014-11-01

    Porous carbon nitride nanosheets (PCNs) have been prepared for the first time by a simple liquid exfoliation method via probe sonication. These mesoporous nanosheets of around 5 nm in thickness combine several advantages including high surface area, enhanced light absorption and excellent water dispersity. It can be used as a versatile support for co-catalyst loading for photocatalytic dye degradation and water reduction. With 3.8 wt% Co3O4 loaded, PCNs can achieve more efficient photocatalytic degradation of Rhodamine B, compared with non-porous C3N4 nanosheets (CNs), bulk porous C3N4 (PCN) and bulk nonporous C3N4 (CN). With 1.0 wt% Pt loaded, CNs and PCN exhibit 7-8 times enhancement in H2 evolution than CN. Remarkably, PCNs with both porous and nanosheet-like features achieve 26 times higher activity in H2 evolution than CN. These significant improvements in photocatalytic activities can be attributed to the high surface area as well as better electron mobility of the two-dimensional nanostructure.Porous carbon nitride nanosheets (PCNs) have been prepared for the first time by a simple liquid exfoliation method via probe sonication. These mesoporous nanosheets of around 5 nm in thickness combine several advantages including high surface area, enhanced light absorption and excellent water dispersity. It can be used as a versatile support for co-catalyst loading for photocatalytic dye degradation and water reduction. With 3.8 wt% Co3O4 loaded, PCNs can achieve more efficient photocatalytic degradation of Rhodamine B, compared with non-porous C3N4 nanosheets (CNs), bulk porous C3N4 (PCN) and bulk nonporous C3N4 (CN). With 1.0 wt% Pt loaded, CNs and PCN exhibit 7-8 times enhancement in H2 evolution than CN. Remarkably, PCNs with both porous and nanosheet-like features achieve 26 times higher activity in H2 evolution than CN. These significant improvements in photocatalytic activities can be attributed to the high surface area as well as better electron mobility of

  12. Trends in space activities in 2014: The significance of the space activities of governments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paikowsky, Deganit; Baram, Gil; Ben-Israel, Isaac

    2016-01-01

    This article addresses the principal events of 2014 in the field of space activities, and extrapolates from them the primary trends that can be identified in governmental space activities. In 2014, global space activities centered on two vectors. The first was geopolitical, and the second relates to the matrix between increasing commercial space activities and traditional governmental space activities. In light of these two vectors, the article outlines and analyzes trends of space exploration, human spaceflights, industry and technology, cooperation versus self-reliance, and space security and sustainability. It also reviews the space activities of the leading space-faring nations.

  13. Significantly enhanced sensitivity of surface plasmon resonance sensor with self-assembled metallic nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Hong-Seung; Lee, Byeong-Hyeon; Oh, Geum-Yoon; Lee, Tae-Kyeong; Kim, Doo-Gun; Kim, Tae-Ryong; Choi, Young-Wan

    2016-04-01

    A surface plasmon resonance (SPR) sensor hybridized with self-assembled metallic nanoparticles is proposed and experimentally demonstrated. The measured sensitivity of the proposed SPR sensor is 110.77 deg/RIU, while that of a conventional SPR sensor is 84.75 deg/RIU. The enhanced sensitivity is attributed to the strong localized surface plasmons and the increased surface interaction area by the nanoparticles. Angle variation measurement, which is an easy detection method using bulk optics, is possible with this structure because a supplementary metallic thin film layer on the nanoparticles leads to utilization of the sensitive variation of the strong localized field by the change of the refractive index. Furthermore, the proposed structure can be fabricated with a very simple three-step nonlithographic process.

  14. Significantly enhanced giant Rashba splitting in a thin film of binary alloy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Shu-Jung; Chen, Wei-Chuan; Chang, Tay-Rong; Tsai, Sun-Ting; Kuo, Je-Ming; Yamamoto, Sh.; Cheng, Cheng-Maw; Tsuei, Ku-Ding; Yaji, Koichiro; Lin, Hsin; Jeng, Horng-Tay; Mou, Chung-Yu; Matsuda, Iwao

    Dirac cones in a 2D environment have attracted much attention not only because of the massless Dirac fermions but also due to their capability to lock the spin direction with the momentum. Here we demonstrate that the Rashba effect within a single layer of a binary alloy composed of heavy atoms, Pb and Au, can be driven by and even tweaked with the adjacent top and bottom layers to yield cones-like structures and further enhance the Rashba coupling strength. Two cones are observed at the surface zone center Γ with giant Rashba parameters 1.53 and 4.45 eVÅ an anisotropic giant Rashba splitting at the surface zone boundary M has a great value, 6.26 eVÅ, inferring the critical role of p- dhybridization between Pb and Au. Our results reveal not only an interesting natural phenomenon but also a feasible method of tweaking the Rashba effect of a 2D system.

  15. Hydrostatic pressure: a very effective approach to significantly enhance critical current density in granular iron pnictide superconductors.

    PubMed

    Shabbir, Babar; Wang, Xiaolin; Ghorbani, S R; Shekhar, Chandra; Dou, Shixue; Srivastava, O N

    2015-01-01

    Pressure is well known to significantly raise the superconducting transition temperature, Tc, in both iron pnictides and cuprate based superconductors. Little work has been done, however, on how pressure can affect the flux pinning and critical current density in the Fe-based superconductors. Here, we propose to use hydrostatic pressure to significantly enhance flux pinning and Tc in polycrystalline pnictide bulks. We have chosen Sr4V2O6Fe2As2 polycrystalline samples as a case study. We demonstrate that the hydrostatic pressure up to 1.2 GPa can not only significantly increase Tc from 15 K (underdoped) to 22 K, but also significantly enhance the irreversibility field, Hirr, by a factor of 4 at 7 K, as well as the critical current density, Jc, by up to 30 times at both low and high fields. It was found that pressure can induce more point defects, which are mainly responsible for the Jc enhancement. Our findings provide an effective method to significantly enhance Tc, Jc, Hirr, and the upper critical field, Hc2, for other families of Fe-based superconductors in the forms of wires/tapes, films, and single crystal and polycrystalline bulks. PMID:25645351

  16. Hydrostatic pressure: A very effective approach to significantly enhance critical current density in granular iron pnictide superconductors

    PubMed Central

    Shabbir, Babar; Wang, Xiaolin; Ghorbani, S. R.; Shekhar, Chandra; Dou, Shixue; Srivastava, O. N.

    2015-01-01

    Pressure is well known to significantly raise the superconducting transition temperature, Tc, in both iron pnictides and cuprate based superconductors. Little work has been done, however, on how pressure can affect the flux pinning and critical current density in the Fe-based superconductors. Here, we propose to use hydrostatic pressure to significantly enhance flux pinning and Tc in polycrystalline pnictide bulks. We have chosen Sr4V2O6Fe2As2 polycrystalline samples as a case study. We demonstrate that the hydrostatic pressure up to 1.2 GPa can not only significantly increase Tc from 15 K (underdoped) to 22 K, but also significantly enhance the irreversibility field, Hirr, by a factor of 4 at 7 K, as well as the critical current density, Jc, by up to 30 times at both low and high fields. It was found that pressure can induce more point defects, which are mainly responsible for the Jc enhancement. Our findings provide an effective method to significantly enhance Tc, Jc, Hirr, and the upper critical field, Hc2, for other families of Fe-based superconductors in the forms of wires/tapes, films, and single crystal and polycrystalline bulks. PMID:25645351

  17. MEETING REPORT: OMG Technical Committee Meeting in Orlando, FL, sees significant enhancement to CORBA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1998-06-01

    The Object Management Group (OMG) Platform Technology Committee (PTC) ratified its support for a new asynchronous messaging service for CORBA at OMG's recent Technical Committee Meeting in Orlando, FL. The meeting, held from 8 - 12 June, saw the PTC send the Messaging Service out for a final vote among the OMG membership. The Messaging Service, which will integrate Message Oriented Middleware (MOM) with CORBA, will give CORBA a true asynchronous messaging capability - something of great interest to users and developers. Formal adoption of the specification will most likely occur by the end of the year. The Messaging Service The Messaging Service, when adopted, will be the world's first standard for Message Oriented Middleware and will give CORBA a true asynchronous messaging capability. Asynchronous messaging allows developers to build simpler, richer client environments. With asynchronous messaging there is less need for multi-threaded clients because the Asynchronous Method Invocation is non-blocking, meaning the client thread can continue work while the application waits for a reply. David Curtis, Director of Platform Technology for OMG, said: `This messaging service is one of the more valuable additions to CORBA. It enhances CORBA's existing asynchronous messaging capabilities which is a feature of many popular message oriented middleware products. This service will allow better integration between ORBs and MOM products. This enhanced messaging capability will only make CORBA more valuable for builders of distributed object systems.' The Messaging Service is one of sixteen technologies currently being worked on by the PTC. Additionally, seventeen Revision Task Forces (RTFs) are working on keeping OMG specifications up to date. The purpose of these Revision Task Forces is to take input from the implementors of OMG specifications and clarify or make necessary changes based on the implementor's input. The RTFs also ensure that the specifications remain up to date

  18. Selenylation modification can enhance immune-enhancing activity of Chuanminshen violaceum polysaccharide.

    PubMed

    Haibo, Feng; Fan, Jing; Bo, Hongquan; Tian, Xi; Bao, He; Wang, Xiaohua

    2016-11-20

    Chuanminshen violaceum polysaccharides (CVPS) were extracted, purified and selenizingly modified. The modification has been achieved by using the HNO3- Na2SeO3 method, and selenizing Chuanminshen violaceum polysaccharides (sCVPS) were evaluated for their physicochemical properties and their potential as adjuvant to modulate cellular and humoral immune responses to hepatitis B subunit vaccine in a mouse model. Our results demonstrated that sCVPS significantly promoted splenocytes proliferation and the production of IL-4 and IFN-γ in vitro. In vivo experiments showed that sCVPS significantly increased the rHBsAg-specific IgG level, IgG subclass (IgG1, IgG2a, and IgG2b) antibody titers, T cells proliferation, levels of IL-4, IL-2, and IFN-γ in CD4 (+)T cells and the level of IFN-γ in CD8(+)T cells. Furthermore, sCVPS increased the activity of natural killer cells and cytotoxic T lymphocytes, thus increasing both cellular and humoral immune responses in vivo. The present data suggest that selenylation of CVPS can significantly improve their immune-enhancing activity both in vitro and in vivo, thus representing a powerful adjuvant for vaccine design. PMID:27561500

  19. Significantly enhanced giant Rashba splitting in a thin film of binary alloy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Wei-Chuan; Chang, Tay-Rong; Tsai, Sun-Ting; Yamamoto, S.; Kuo, Je-Ming; Cheng, Cheng-Maw; Tsuei, Ku-Ding; Yaji, Koichiro; Lin, Hsin; Jeng, H.-T.; Mou, Chung-Yu; Matsuda, Iwao; Tang, S.-J.

    2015-08-01

    Dirac cones in a two-dimensional environment have attracted much attention not only because of the massless Dirac fermions but also due to their capability to lock the spin direction with the momentum. Here we demonstrate that the Rashba effect within a single layer of a binary alloy composed of heavy atoms, Pb and Au, can be driven by and even tweaked with the adjacent top and bottom layers to yield cone-like structures and further enhance the Rashba coupling strength. Two cones are observed at the surface zone center \\bar{Γ } with giant Rashba parameters 1.53 and 4.45 eVÅ an anisotropic giant Rashba splitting at the surface zone boundary \\bar{M} has a great value, 6.26 eVÅ, inferring the critical role of p-d hybridization between Pb and Au. Our results reveal not only an interesting natural phenomenon but also a feasible method of tweaking the Rashba effect of a two-dimensional system.

  20. Significant enhancement of the thermoelectric figure of merit of polycrystalline Si films by reducing grain size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valalaki, K.; Vouroutzis, N.; Nassiopoulou, A. G.

    2016-08-01

    The thermoelectric properties of p-type polycrystalline silicon thin films deposited by low pressure chemical vapour deposition (LPCVD) were accurately determined at room temperature and the thermoelectric figure of merit was deduced as a function of film thickness, ranging from 100 to 500 nm. The effect of film thickness on their thermoelectric performance is discussed. More than threefold increase in the thermoelectric figure of merit of the 100 nm thick polysilicon film was observed compared to the 500 nm thick film, reaching a value as high as 0.033. This enhancement is mainly the result of the smaller grain size in the thinner films. With the decrease in grain size the resistivity of the films is increased twofold and electrical conductivity decreased, however the Seebeck coefficient is increased by 30% and the thermal conductivity is decreased eightfold, being mainly at the origin of the increased figure of merit of the 100 nm film. Our experimental results were compared to known theoretical models and the possible mechanisms involved are presented and discussed.

  1. Ozone-Induced Dissociation of Conjugated Lipids Reveals Significant Reaction Rate Enhancements and Characteristic Odd-Electron Product Ions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pham, Huong T.; Maccarone, Alan T.; Campbell, J. Larry; Mitchell, Todd W.; Blanksby, Stephen J.

    2013-02-01

    Ozone-induced dissociation (OzID) is an alternative ion activation method that relies on the gas phase ion-molecule reaction between a mass-selected target ion and ozone in an ion trap mass spectrometer. Herein, we evaluated the performance of OzID for both the structural elucidation and selective detection of conjugated carbon-carbon double bond motifs within lipids. The relative reactivity trends for [M + X]+ ions (where X = Li, Na, K) formed via electrospray ionization (ESI) of conjugated versus nonconjugated fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) were examined using two different OzID-enabled linear ion-trap mass spectrometers. Compared with nonconjugated analogues, FAMEs derived from conjugated linoleic acids were found to react up to 200 times faster and to yield characteristic radical cations. The significantly enhanced reactivity of conjugated isomers means that OzID product ions can be observed without invoking a reaction delay in the experimental sequence (i.e., trapping of ions in the presence of ozone is not required). This possibility has been exploited to undertake neutral-loss scans on a triple quadrupole mass spectrometer targeting characteristic OzID transitions. Such analyses reveal the presence of conjugated double bonds in lipids extracted from selected foodstuffs. Finally, by benchmarking of the absolute ozone concentration inside the ion trap, second order rate constants for the gas phase reactions between unsaturated organic ions and ozone were obtained. These results demonstrate a significant influence of the adducting metal on reaction rate constants in the fashion Li > Na > K.

  2. Ozone-induced dissociation of conjugated lipids reveals significant reaction rate enhancements and characteristic odd-electron product ions.

    PubMed

    Pham, Huong T; Maccarone, Alan T; Campbell, J Larry; Mitchell, Todd W; Blanksby, Stephen J

    2013-02-01

    Ozone-induced dissociation (OzID) is an alternative ion activation method that relies on the gas phase ion-molecule reaction between a mass-selected target ion and ozone in an ion trap mass spectrometer. Herein, we evaluated the performance of OzID for both the structural elucidation and selective detection of conjugated carbon-carbon double bond motifs within lipids. The relative reactivity trends for [M + X](+) ions (where X = Li, Na, K) formed via electrospray ionization (ESI) of conjugated versus nonconjugated fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) were examined using two different OzID-enabled linear ion-trap mass spectrometers. Compared with nonconjugated analogues, FAMEs derived from conjugated linoleic acids were found to react up to 200 times faster and to yield characteristic radical cations. The significantly enhanced reactivity of conjugated isomers means that OzID product ions can be observed without invoking a reaction delay in the experimental sequence (i.e., trapping of ions in the presence of ozone is not required). This possibility has been exploited to undertake neutral-loss scans on a triple quadrupole mass spectrometer targeting characteristic OzID transitions. Such analyses reveal the presence of conjugated double bonds in lipids extracted from selected foodstuffs. Finally, by benchmarking of the absolute ozone concentration inside the ion trap, second order rate constants for the gas phase reactions between unsaturated organic ions and ozone were obtained. These results demonstrate a significant influence of the adducting metal on reaction rate constants in the fashion Li > Na > K.

  3. Allele-specific DNA methylation reinforces PEAR1 enhancer activity.

    PubMed

    Izzi, Benedetta; Pistoni, Mariaelena; Cludts, Katrien; Akkor, Pinar; Lambrechts, Diether; Verfaillie, Catherine; Verhamme, Peter; Freson, Kathleen; Hoylaerts, Marc F

    2016-08-18

    Genetic variation in the PEAR1 locus is linked to platelet reactivity and cardiovascular disease. The major G allele of rs12041331, an intronic cytosine guanine dinucleotide-single-nucleotide polymorphism (CpG-SNP), is associated with higher PEAR1 expression in platelets and endothelial cells than the minor A allele. The molecular mechanism underlying this difference remains elusive. We have characterized the histone modification profiles of the intronic region surrounding rs12041331 and identified H3K4Me1 enhancer-specific enrichment for the region that covers the CpG-SNP. Interestingly, methylation studies revealed that the CpG site is fully methylated in leukocytes of GG carriers. Nuclear protein extracts from megakaryocytes, endothelial cells, vs control HEK-293 cells show a 3-fold higher affinity for the methylated G allele compared with nonmethylated G or A alleles in a gel electrophoretic mobility shift assay. To understand the positive relationship between methylation and gene expression, we studied DNA methylation at 4 different loci of PEAR1 during in vitro megakaryopoiesis. During differentiation, the CpG-SNP remained fully methylated, while we observed rapid methylation increases at the CpG-island overlapping the first 5'-untranslated region exon, paralleling the increased PEAR1 expression. In the same region, A-allele carriers of rs12041331 showed significantly lower DNA methylation at CGI1 compared with GG homozygote. This CpG-island contains binding sites for the methylation-sensitive transcription factor CTCF, whose binding is known to play a role in enhancer activation and/or repression. In conclusion, we report the molecular characterization of the first platelet function-related CpG-SNP, a genetic predisposition that reinforces PEAR1 enhancer activity through allele-specific DNA methylation. PMID:27313330

  4. Is Enhanced Physical Activity Possible Using Active Videogames?

    PubMed

    Baranowski, Tom; Baranowski, Janice; O'Connor, Teresia; Lu, Amy Shirong; Thompson, Debbe

    2012-06-01

    Our research indicated that 10-12-year-old children receiving two active Wii(™) (Nintendo(®); Nintendo of America, Inc., Redmond, WA) console videogames were no more physically active than children receiving two inactive videogames. Research is needed on how active videogames may increase physical activity.

  5. Is Enhanced Physical Activity Possible Using Active Videogames?

    PubMed Central

    Baranowski, Janice; O'Connor, Teresia; Lu, Amy Shirong; Thompson, Debbe

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Our research indicated that 10–12-year-old children receiving two active Wii™ (Nintendo®; Nintendo of America, Inc., Redmond, WA) console videogames were no more physically active than children receiving two inactive videogames. Research is needed on how active videogames may increase physical activity. PMID:24416640

  6. Simple Machine Perfusion Significantly Enhances Hepatocyte Yields of Ischemic and Fresh Rat Livers

    PubMed Central

    Izamis, Maria-Louisa; Calhoun, Candice; Uygun, Basak E.; Guzzardi, Maria Angela; Price, Gavrielle; Luitje, Martha; Saeidi, Nima; Yarmush, Martin L.; Uygun, Korkut

    2013-01-01

    The scarcity of viable hepatocytes is a significant bottleneck in cell transplantation, drug discovery, toxicology, tissue engineering, and bioartificial assist devices, where trillions of high-functioning hepatocytes are needed annually. We took the novel approach of using machine perfusion to maximize cell recovery, specifically from uncontrolled cardiac death donors, the largest source of disqualified donor organs. In a rat model, we developed a simple 3-h room temperature (20 ± 2°C) machine perfusion protocol to treat nonpremedicated livers exposed to 1 h of warm (34°C) ischemia. Treated ischemic livers were compared to fresh, fresh-treated, and untreated ischemic livers using viable hepatocyte yields and in vitro performance as quantitative endpoints. Perfusion treatment resulted in both a 25-fold increase in viable hepatocytes from ischemic livers and a 40% increase from fresh livers. While cell morphology and function in suspension and plate cultures of untreated warm ischemic cells was significantly impaired, treated warm ischemic cells were indistinguishable from fresh hepatocytes. Furthermore, a strong linear correlation between tissue ATP and cell yield enabled accurate evaluation of the extent of perfusion recovery. Maximal recovery of warm ischemic liver ATP content appears to be correlated with optimal flow through the microvasculature. These data demonstrate that the inclusion of a simple perfusion-preconditioning step can significantly increase the efficiency of functional hepatocyte yields and the number of donor livers that can be gainfully utilized. PMID:25431743

  7. FOCUSED R&D FOR ELECTROCHROMIC SMART WINDOWS: SIGNIFICANT PERFORMANCE AND YIELD ENHANCEMENTS

    SciTech Connect

    Marcus Milling

    2004-09-23

    Developments made under this program will play a key role in underpinning the technology for producing EC devices. It is anticipated that the work begun during this period will continue to improve materials properties, and drive yields up and costs down, increase durability and make manufacture simpler and more cost effective. It is hoped that this will contribute to a successful and profitable industry, which will help reduce energy consumption and improve comfort for building occupants worldwide. The first major task involved improvements to the materials used in the process. The improvements made as a result of the work done during this project have contributed to the enhanced performance, including dynamic range, uniformity and electrical characteristics. Another major objective of the project was to develop technology to improve yield, reduce cost, and facilitate manufacturing of EC products. Improvements directly attributable to the work carried out as part of this project and seen in the overall EC device performance, have been accompanied by an improvement in the repeatability and consistency of the production process. Innovative test facilities for characterizing devices in a timely and well-defined manner have been developed. The equipment has been designed in such a way as to make scaling-up to accommodate higher throughput necessary for manufacturing relatively straightforward. Finally, the third major goal was to assure the durability of the EC product, both by developments aimed at improving the product performance, as well as development of novel procedures to test the durability of this new product. Both aspects have been demonstrated, both by carrying out a number of different durability tests, both in-house and by independent third-party testers, and also developing several novel durability tests.

  8. Embedding Research Activities to Enhance Student Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Webster, Cynthia M.; Kenney, Jacqueline

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper's novel, research-oriented approach is to embed research-based activities in a core second-year course of a university business degree program to support and develop student research capabilities. Design/methodology/approach: The design draws on Boud and Prosser's work to foster participation in a…

  9. Writing Composition Activities to Enhance Reading Comprehension.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gold, Janet T.

    A program of written composition based on reading comprehension can help students gain greater in-depth understanding of reading materials. Once the reading comprehension skill has been clearly defined for the class, the writing activity can provide clarification by allowing for analysis of the definition through written manipulation of language.…

  10. BIOLOGICALLY ENHANCED OXYGEN TRANSFER IN THE ACTIVATED SLUDGE PROCESS (JOURNAL)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Biologically enhanced oxgyen transfer has been a hypothesis to explain observed oxygen transfer rates in activated sludge systems that were well above that predicted from aerator clean-water testing. The enhanced oxygen transfer rates were based on tests using BOD bottle oxygen ...

  11. The Running Wheel Enhances Food Anticipatory Activity: An Exploratory Study

    PubMed Central

    Flôres, Danilo E. F. L.; Bettilyon, Crystal N.; Jia, Lori; Yamazaki, Shin

    2016-01-01

    Rodents anticipate rewarding stimuli such as daily meals, mates, and stimulant drugs. When a single meal is provided daily at a fixed time of day, an increase in activity, known as food anticipatory activity (FAA), occurs several hours before feeding time. The factors affecting the expression of FAA have not been well-studied. Understanding these factors may provide clues to the undiscovered anatomical substrates of food entrainment. In this study we determined whether wheel-running activity, which is also rewarding to rodents, modulated the robustness of FAA. We found that access to a freely rotating wheel enhanced the robustness of FAA. This enhancement was lost when the wheel was removed. In addition, while prior exposure to a running wheel alone did not enhance FAA, the presence of a locked wheel did enhance FAA as long as mice had previously run in the wheel. Together, these data suggest that FAA, like wheel-running activity, is influenced by reward signaling. PMID:27458354

  12. The Running Wheel Enhances Food Anticipatory Activity: An Exploratory Study.

    PubMed

    Flôres, Danilo E F L; Bettilyon, Crystal N; Jia, Lori; Yamazaki, Shin

    2016-01-01

    Rodents anticipate rewarding stimuli such as daily meals, mates, and stimulant drugs. When a single meal is provided daily at a fixed time of day, an increase in activity, known as food anticipatory activity (FAA), occurs several hours before feeding time. The factors affecting the expression of FAA have not been well-studied. Understanding these factors may provide clues to the undiscovered anatomical substrates of food entrainment. In this study we determined whether wheel-running activity, which is also rewarding to rodents, modulated the robustness of FAA. We found that access to a freely rotating wheel enhanced the robustness of FAA. This enhancement was lost when the wheel was removed. In addition, while prior exposure to a running wheel alone did not enhance FAA, the presence of a locked wheel did enhance FAA as long as mice had previously run in the wheel. Together, these data suggest that FAA, like wheel-running activity, is influenced by reward signaling. PMID:27458354

  13. The Running Wheel Enhances Food Anticipatory Activity: An Exploratory Study.

    PubMed

    Flôres, Danilo E F L; Bettilyon, Crystal N; Jia, Lori; Yamazaki, Shin

    2016-01-01

    Rodents anticipate rewarding stimuli such as daily meals, mates, and stimulant drugs. When a single meal is provided daily at a fixed time of day, an increase in activity, known as food anticipatory activity (FAA), occurs several hours before feeding time. The factors affecting the expression of FAA have not been well-studied. Understanding these factors may provide clues to the undiscovered anatomical substrates of food entrainment. In this study we determined whether wheel-running activity, which is also rewarding to rodents, modulated the robustness of FAA. We found that access to a freely rotating wheel enhanced the robustness of FAA. This enhancement was lost when the wheel was removed. In addition, while prior exposure to a running wheel alone did not enhance FAA, the presence of a locked wheel did enhance FAA as long as mice had previously run in the wheel. Together, these data suggest that FAA, like wheel-running activity, is influenced by reward signaling.

  14. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Zhang, Yu; Duan, Junxin; Tang, Lan; Wu, Wenping

    2015-06-09

    Provided are isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. Also provided are nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  15. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Zhang, Yu; Tang, Lan; Henriksen, Svend Hostgaard Bang

    2016-05-17

    The present invention provides isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also provides nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  16. Active tails enhance arboreal acrobatics in geckos

    PubMed Central

    Jusufi, Ardian; Goldman, Daniel I.; Revzen, Shai; Full, Robert J.

    2008-01-01

    Geckos are nature's elite climbers. Their remarkable climbing feats have been attributed to specialized feet with hairy toes that uncurl and peel in milliseconds. Here, we report that the secret to the gecko's arboreal acrobatics includes an active tail. We examine the tail's role during rapid climbing, aerial descent, and gliding. We show that a gecko's tail functions as an emergency fifth leg to prevent falling during rapid climbing. A response initiated by slipping causes the tail tip to push against the vertical surface, thereby preventing pitch-back of the head and upper body. When pitch-back cannot be prevented, geckos avoid falling by placing their tail in a posture similar to a bicycle's kickstand. Should a gecko fall with its back to the ground, a swing of its tail induces the most rapid, zero-angular momentum air-righting response yet measured. Once righted to a sprawled gliding posture, circular tail movements control yaw and pitch as the gecko descends. Our results suggest that large, active tails can function as effective control appendages. These results have provided biological inspiration for the design of an active tail on a climbing robot, and we anticipate their use in small, unmanned gliding vehicles and multisegment spacecraft. PMID:18347344

  17. Heparin enhances the catalytic activity of des-ETW-thrombin.

    PubMed

    Goodwin, C A; Deadman, J J; Le Bonniec, B F; Elgendy, S; Kakkar, V V; Scully, M F

    1996-04-01

    The thrombin mutant, des-ETW-thrombin, lacking Glu(146), Thr(147), and Trp(148) within a unique insertion loop located at the extreme end of the primary specificity pocket, has been shown previously to exhibit reduced catalytic activity with respect to macromolecular and synthetic thrombin substrates and reduced or enhanced susceptibility to inhibition. Investigation of the hydrolysis of peptidyl p-nitroanilide substrates by des-ETW-thrombin showed increased activity in the presence of heparin and other sulphated glycosaminoglycans. No effect was observed upon the activity of wild-type thrombin. Heparin was found to decrease the K(m) for cleavage of four thrombin-specific substrates by des-ETW-thrombin by 3-4-fold. Similarly, pentosan polysulphate (PPS) decreased the K(m) with these substrates by 8-10-fold. Heparin also increased the rate of inhibition of des-ETW-thrombin by antithrombin III and D-phenylalanyl-prolyl-arginylchloromethane (PPACK). The inhibition of des-ETW-thrombin by a number of thrombin-specific peptide boronic acids also showed significant reduction in the final K(i) in the presence of heparin, due to reduction in the off-rate. A peptide analogue of a sequence of hirudin which binds thrombin tightly to exosite I (fibrinogen recognition site) potentiated the activity of des-ETW-thrombin against peptide p-nitroanilide substrates in a manner similar to heparin. The K(i) for the inhibition of des-ETW-thrombin by p-aminobenzamidine was decreased by these ligands from 9.7 mM to 7.5 mM, 5.1 mM, and 2.5 mM in the presence of heparin, hirudin peptide and PPS respectively, suggesting the increased catalytic activity is due to enhanced access to the primary specificity pocket. The positive influence of these ligands on des-ETW-thrombin was reversed in the presence of ATP or ADP; the latter has previously been shown to inhibit thrombin activity by blocking initial interaction with fibrinogen at exosite 1. Because the effect of heparin and PPS is similar to

  18. An enhanced cluster analysis program with bootstrap significance testing for ecological community analysis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McKenna, J.E.

    2003-01-01

    The biosphere is filled with complex living patterns and important questions about biodiversity and community and ecosystem ecology are concerned with structure and function of multispecies systems that are responsible for those patterns. Cluster analysis identifies discrete groups within multivariate data and is an effective method of coping with these complexities, but often suffers from subjective identification of groups. The bootstrap testing method greatly improves objective significance determination for cluster analysis. The BOOTCLUS program makes cluster analysis that reliably identifies real patterns within a data set more accessible and easier to use than previously available programs. A variety of analysis options and rapid re-analysis provide a means to quickly evaluate several aspects of a data set. Interpretation is influenced by sampling design and a priori designation of samples into replicate groups, and ultimately relies on the researcher's knowledge of the organisms and their environment. However, the BOOTCLUS program provides reliable, objectively determined groupings of multivariate data.

  19. Is enhanced physical activity possible using active videogames?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Our research indicated that 10– to 12-year-old children receiving two active Wii (TM)(Nintendo (R); Nintendo of America, Inc., Redmond, WA) console videogames were no more physically active than children receiving two inactive videogames. Research is needed on how active videogames may increase phys...

  20. Activity and Imagined Activity Can Enhance Young Children's Reading Comprehension

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glenberg, Arthur M.; Gutierrez, Tiana; Levin, Joel R.; Japuntich, Sandra; Kaschak, Michael P.

    2004-01-01

    The Indexical Hypothesis suggests a new method for enhancing children's reading comprehension. Young readers may not consistently "index," or map, words to the objects the words represent. Consequently, these readers fail to derive much meaning from the text. The instructional method involves manipulating toy objects referred to in the text (e.g.,…

  1. Chemically modified RNA activated matrices enhance bone regeneration.

    PubMed

    Elangovan, Satheesh; Khorsand, Behnoush; Do, Anh-Vu; Hong, Liu; Dewerth, Alexander; Kormann, Michael; Ross, Ryan D; Sumner, D Rick; Allamargot, Chantal; Salem, Aliasger K

    2015-11-28

    There exists a dire need for improved therapeutics to achieve predictable bone regeneration. Gene therapy using non-viral vectors that are safe and efficient at transfecting target cells is a promising approach to overcoming the drawbacks of protein delivery of growth factors. Here, we investigated the transfection efficiency, cytotoxicity, osteogenic potential and in vivo bone regenerative capacity of chemically modified ribonucleic acid (cmRNA) (encoding BMP-2) complexed with polyethylenimine (PEI) and made comparisons with PEI complexed with conventional plasmid DNA (encoding BMP-2). The polyplexes were fabricated at an amine (N) to phosphate (P) ratio of 10 and characterized for transfection efficiency using human bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs). The osteogenic potential of BMSCs treated with these polyplexes was validated by determining the expression of bone-specific genes, osteocalcin and alkaline phosphatase as well as through the detection of bone matrix deposition. Using a calvarial bone defect model in rats, it was shown that PEI-cmRNA (encoding BMP-2)-activated matrices promoted significantly enhanced bone regeneration compared to PEI-plasmid DNA (BMP-2)-activated matrices. Our proof of concept study suggests that scaffolds loaded with non-viral vectors harboring cmRNA encoding osteogenic proteins may be a powerful tool for stimulating bone regeneration with significant potential for clinical translation. PMID:26415855

  2. Protect and enhance: Lowi's juridical democracy and the prevention of significant deterioration of air quality

    SciTech Connect

    Meiburg, A.S.

    1986-01-01

    The capture of Federal regulatory agencies by the groups they were supposed to be regulating has been a topic of concern in the traditional literature of public administration. In his influential book The End of Liberalism, Professor Theordore Lowi suggested that capture resulted in part from vauge delegations of authority of Congress to regulatory agencies. Lowi argued that democracy would be better served if Congress were more specific in drafting laws, if agencies made greater use of formal rulemaking in implementing them, and if the courts rejected statutes which contained excessively vague delegations of authority - a remedy which he labeled juridicial democracy. This dissertation examines Lowi's theory in light of the experience of Congress and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the requirements of the Clean Air Act to prevent the significant deterioration of air quality in areas where air was already relatively clean. The history of the program to develop and carry out these requirements, known as PSD, is described in detail from its inception in the late 1960's through EPA's final regulations in 1980. Special attention is given to the actions taken by EPA after environmental groups successfully used the courts to force EPA to develop a PSD program in 1974, how Congress responded by amending the Clean Air Act in 1977, and the difficulties these amendments and subsequent additional court reviews caused for EPA.

  3. Environmental Education Activities to Enhance Decision-Making.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yambert, Paul A.; And Others

    This document contains a set of 10 activities that teachers may use with students (ages 10 to adult) to enhance environmental knowledge and environmentally responsible behavior. Sample worksheets are included when applicable. The activities focus on: renewable and nonrenewable resources; recycling; population growth; wildlife; recycling in a…

  4. Enhancer hijacking activates GFI1 family oncogenes in medulloblastoma.

    PubMed

    Northcott, Paul A; Lee, Catherine; Zichner, Thomas; Stütz, Adrian M; Erkek, Serap; Kawauchi, Daisuke; Shih, David J H; Hovestadt, Volker; Zapatka, Marc; Sturm, Dominik; Jones, David T W; Kool, Marcel; Remke, Marc; Cavalli, Florence M G; Zuyderduyn, Scott; Bader, Gary D; VandenBerg, Scott; Esparza, Lourdes Adriana; Ryzhova, Marina; Wang, Wei; Wittmann, Andrea; Stark, Sebastian; Sieber, Laura; Seker-Cin, Huriye; Linke, Linda; Kratochwil, Fabian; Jäger, Natalie; Buchhalter, Ivo; Imbusch, Charles D; Zipprich, Gideon; Raeder, Benjamin; Schmidt, Sabine; Diessl, Nicolle; Wolf, Stephan; Wiemann, Stefan; Brors, Benedikt; Lawerenz, Chris; Eils, Jürgen; Warnatz, Hans-Jörg; Risch, Thomas; Yaspo, Marie-Laure; Weber, Ursula D; Bartholomae, Cynthia C; von Kalle, Christof; Turányi, Eszter; Hauser, Peter; Sanden, Emma; Darabi, Anna; Siesjö, Peter; Sterba, Jaroslav; Zitterbart, Karel; Sumerauer, David; van Sluis, Peter; Versteeg, Rogier; Volckmann, Richard; Koster, Jan; Schuhmann, Martin U; Ebinger, Martin; Grimes, H Leighton; Robinson, Giles W; Gajjar, Amar; Mynarek, Martin; von Hoff, Katja; Rutkowski, Stefan; Pietsch, Torsten; Scheurlen, Wolfram; Felsberg, Jörg; Reifenberger, Guido; Kulozik, Andreas E; von Deimling, Andreas; Witt, Olaf; Eils, Roland; Gilbertson, Richard J; Korshunov, Andrey; Taylor, Michael D; Lichter, Peter; Korbel, Jan O; Wechsler-Reya, Robert J; Pfister, Stefan M

    2014-07-24

    Medulloblastoma is a highly malignant paediatric brain tumour currently treated with a combination of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, posing a considerable burden of toxicity to the developing child. Genomics has illuminated the extensive intertumoral heterogeneity of medulloblastoma, identifying four distinct molecular subgroups. Group 3 and group 4 subgroup medulloblastomas account for most paediatric cases; yet, oncogenic drivers for these subtypes remain largely unidentified. Here we describe a series of prevalent, highly disparate genomic structural variants, restricted to groups 3 and 4, resulting in specific and mutually exclusive activation of the growth factor independent 1 family proto-oncogenes, GFI1 and GFI1B. Somatic structural variants juxtapose GFI1 or GFI1B coding sequences proximal to active enhancer elements, including super-enhancers, instigating oncogenic activity. Our results, supported by evidence from mouse models, identify GFI1 and GFI1B as prominent medulloblastoma oncogenes and implicate 'enhancer hijacking' as an efficient mechanism driving oncogene activation in a childhood cancer.

  5. Caffeine enhances micturition through neuronal activation in micturition centers.

    PubMed

    Cho, Young-Sam; Ko, Il-Gyu; Kim, Sung-Eun; Hwan, Lakkyong; Shin, Mal-Soon; Kim, Chang-Ju; Kim, Sang-Hoon; Jin, Jun-Jang; Chung, Jun-Young; Kim, Khae-Hawn

    2014-12-01

    Caffeine may promote incontinence through its diuretic effect, particularly in individuals with underlying detrusor overactivity, in addition to increasing muscle contraction of the bladder smooth muscle. Caffeine may also affect bladder function via central micturition centers, including the medial preoptic area, ventrolateral periaqueductal gray, and pontine micturition center. However, the biochemical mechanisms of caffeine in central micturition centers affecting bladder function remain unclear. In the present study, the effects of caffeine on the central micturition reflex were investigated by measuring the degree of neuronal activation, and by quantifying nerve growth factor (NGF) expression in rats. Following caffeine administration for 14 days, a urodynamic study was performed to assess the changes to bladder function. Subsequently, immunohistochemical staining to identify the expression of c‑Fos and NGF in the central micturition areas was performed. Ingestion of caffeine increased bladder smooth muscle contraction pressure and time as determined by cystometry. Expression levels of c‑Fos and NGF in all central micturition areas were significantly increased following the administration of caffeine. The effects on contraction pressure and time were the most potent and expression levels of c‑Fos and NGF were greatest at the lowest dose of caffeine. These results suggest that caffeine facilitates bladder instability through enhancing neuronal activation in the central micturition areas.

  6. Nanocaged enzymes with enhanced catalytic activity and increased stability against protease digestion.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Zhao; Fu, Jinglin; Dhakal, Soma; Johnson-Buck, Alexander; Liu, Minghui; Zhang, Ting; Woodbury, Neal W; Liu, Yan; Walter, Nils G; Yan, Hao

    2016-02-10

    Cells routinely compartmentalize enzymes for enhanced efficiency of their metabolic pathways. Here we report a general approach to construct DNA nanocaged enzymes for enhancing catalytic activity and stability. Nanocaged enzymes are realized by self-assembly into DNA nanocages with well-controlled stoichiometry and architecture that enabled a systematic study of the impact of both encapsulation and proximal polyanionic surfaces on a set of common metabolic enzymes. Activity assays at both bulk and single-molecule levels demonstrate increased substrate turnover numbers for DNA nanocage-encapsulated enzymes. Unexpectedly, we observe a significant inverse correlation between the size of a protein and its activity enhancement. This effect is consistent with a model wherein distal polyanionic surfaces of the nanocage enhance the stability of active enzyme conformations through the action of a strongly bound hydration layer. We further show that DNA nanocages protect encapsulated enzymes against proteases, demonstrating their practical utility in functional biomaterials and biotechnology.

  7. Nanocaged enzymes with enhanced catalytic activity and increased stability against protease digestion

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Zhao; Fu, Jinglin; Dhakal, Soma; Johnson-Buck, Alexander; Liu, Minghui; Zhang, Ting; Woodbury, Neal W.; Liu, Yan; Walter, Nils G.; Yan, Hao

    2016-01-01

    Cells routinely compartmentalize enzymes for enhanced efficiency of their metabolic pathways. Here we report a general approach to construct DNA nanocaged enzymes for enhancing catalytic activity and stability. Nanocaged enzymes are realized by self-assembly into DNA nanocages with well-controlled stoichiometry and architecture that enabled a systematic study of the impact of both encapsulation and proximal polyanionic surfaces on a set of common metabolic enzymes. Activity assays at both bulk and single-molecule levels demonstrate increased substrate turnover numbers for DNA nanocage-encapsulated enzymes. Unexpectedly, we observe a significant inverse correlation between the size of a protein and its activity enhancement. This effect is consistent with a model wherein distal polyanionic surfaces of the nanocage enhance the stability of active enzyme conformations through the action of a strongly bound hydration layer. We further show that DNA nanocages protect encapsulated enzymes against proteases, demonstrating their practical utility in functional biomaterials and biotechnology. PMID:26861509

  8. Nanocaged enzymes with enhanced catalytic activity and increased stability against protease digestion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Zhao; Fu, Jinglin; Dhakal, Soma; Johnson-Buck, Alexander; Liu, Minghui; Zhang, Ting; Woodbury, Neal W.; Liu, Yan; Walter, Nils G.; Yan, Hao

    2016-02-01

    Cells routinely compartmentalize enzymes for enhanced efficiency of their metabolic pathways. Here we report a general approach to construct DNA nanocaged enzymes for enhancing catalytic activity and stability. Nanocaged enzymes are realized by self-assembly into DNA nanocages with well-controlled stoichiometry and architecture that enabled a systematic study of the impact of both encapsulation and proximal polyanionic surfaces on a set of common metabolic enzymes. Activity assays at both bulk and single-molecule levels demonstrate increased substrate turnover numbers for DNA nanocage-encapsulated enzymes. Unexpectedly, we observe a significant inverse correlation between the size of a protein and its activity enhancement. This effect is consistent with a model wherein distal polyanionic surfaces of the nanocage enhance the stability of active enzyme conformations through the action of a strongly bound hydration layer. We further show that DNA nanocages protect encapsulated enzymes against proteases, demonstrating their practical utility in functional biomaterials and biotechnology.

  9. A facile method of activating graphitic carbon nitride for enhanced photocatalytic activity.

    PubMed

    Liao, Yongliang; Zhu, Shenmin; Chen, Zhixin; Lou, Xianghong; Zhang, Di

    2015-11-01

    Activated graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) with enhanced photocatalytic capability under visible light irradiation was fabricated by using a facile chemical activation treatment method. In the chemical activation, a mixed solution of hydrogen peroxide and ammonia was employed. The yield can reach as high as 90% after the activation process. The activation process did not change the crystal structure, functional group, morphology and specific surface area of pristine g-C3N4, but it introduced H and O elements into the CN framework of g-C3N4, resulting in a broader optical absorption range, higher light absorption capability and more efficient separation of photogenerated electrons and holes. The photoactivity was investigated by the degradation of rhodamine B (RhB) under visible light irradiation. As compared to the pristine g-C3N4, the activated g-C3N4 exhibited a distinct and efficient two-step degradation process. It was found that the RhB dye in the activated g-C3N4 was mainly oxidized by the photogenerated holes. It is believed that sufficient holes account for the two-step degradation process because they would significantly improve the efficiency of the N-de-ethylation reaction of RhB. PMID:26437896

  10. Paraoxonase-1 activity determination via paraoxon substrate yields no significant difference in mild hyperhomocysteinemia.

    PubMed

    Türkeli, Hatice; Caycı, Tuncer; Akgül, Emin Özgür; Macit, Enis; Yaman, Halil; Aydın, Ibrahim; Demirin, Hilmi; Alacam, Hasan; Ozkan, Esin; Cakır, Erdinç; Deren, Ozgür; Erbil, Mehmet Kemal; Kunak, Z Ilker; Burat, Kutlay; Akman, Serif

    2010-11-01

    Elevated plasma homocystein (Hcy) level has been recognized as an important risk factor for a number of cardiovascular diseases, peripheral arterial occlusive disease and venous thrombosis. A part of Hcy in the organism is turned to homocysteine thiolactone (HcyT) via a ring closure reaction, which gains rate in hyperhomocysteinemia, and in turn undergoes a hydrolytic reaction back to Hcy by paraoxonase enzyme (PON). Since this is a protective reflex action enzyme against hyperhomocysteinemia, we investigated how a mild hyperhomocysteinemic nutritional habit affected serum PON activity in a population-based study. The difference detected via enzymatic activity using the paraoxon substrate was statistically non-significant (p=0.19), suggesting a defective performance to reflect the expected significance. Determination of serum PON activity via substrate paraoxon yielded no significant difference in an acute mild hyperhomocysteinemic diet model in humans. PMID:19419786

  11. Asymmetrical hemisphere activation enhances global-local processing.

    PubMed

    Gable, Philip A; Poole, Bryan D; Cook, Mary S

    2013-12-01

    Decades of research focusing on the neurophysiological underpinnings related to global-local processing of hierarchical stimuli have associated global processing with the right hemisphere and local processing with the left hemisphere. The current experiment sought to expand this research by testing the causal contributions of hemisphere activation to global-local processing. To manipulate hemisphere activation, participants engaged in contralateral hand contractions. Then, EEG activity and attentional scope were measured. Right-hand contractions caused greater relative left-cortical activity than left-hand contractions. Participants were more narrowly focused after left-hemisphere activation than after right-hemisphere activation. Moreover, N1 amplitudes to local targets in the left hemisphere were larger after left-hemisphere activation than after right-hemisphere activation. Consistent with past research investigating hemispheric asymmetry and attentional scope, the current results suggest that manipulating left (right) hemisphere activity enhanced local (global) attentional processing.

  12. An Acute Lateral Ankle Sprain Significantly Decreases Physical Activity across the Lifespan.

    PubMed

    Hubbard-Turner, Tricia; Wikstrom, Erik A; Guderian, Sophie; Turner, Michael J

    2015-09-01

    We do not know the impact an ankle sprain has on physical activity levels across the lifespan. With the negative consequences of physical inactivity well established, understanding the effect of an ankle sprain on this outcome is critical. The objective of this study was to measure physical activity across the lifespan after a single ankle sprain in an animal model. Thirty male mice (CBA/J) were randomly placed into one of three groups: the transected calcaneofibular ligament (CFL) group, the transected anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL)/CFL group, and a SHAM group. Three days after surgery, all of the mice were individually housed in a cage containing a solid surface running wheel. Physical activity levels were recorded and averaged every week across the mouse's lifespan. The SHAM mice ran significantly more distance each day compared to the remaining two running groups (post hoc p = 0.011). Daily duration was different between the three running groups (p = 0.048). The SHAM mice ran significantly more minutes each day compared to the remaining two running groups (post hoc p=0.046) while the ATFL/CFL mice ran significantly less minutes each day (post hoc p = 0.028) compared to both the SHAM and CFL only group. The SHAM mice ran at a faster daily speed versus the remaining two groups of mice (post hoc p = 0.019) and the ATFL/CFL mice ran significantly slower each day compared to the SHAM and CFL group (post hoc p = 0.005). The results of this study indicate that a single ankle sprain significantly decreases physical activity across the lifespan in mice. This decrease in physical activity can potentially lead to the development of numerous chronic diseases. An ankle sprain thus has the potential to lead to significant long term health risks if not treated appropriately. Key pointsA single ankle significantly decreased physical activity levels in mice across the lifespan.Decreased physical activity could significantly negatively impact overall health if not modified

  13. Individual transcriptional activity of estrogen receptors in primary breast cancer and its clinical significance.

    PubMed

    Gohno, Tatsuyuki; Seino, Yuko; Hanamura, Toru; Niwa, Toshifumi; Matsumoto, Mitsuyo; Yaegashi, Nobuo; Oba, Hanako; Kurosumi, Masafumi; Takei, Hiroyuki; Yamaguchi, Yuri; Hayashi, Shin-Ichi

    2012-12-01

    To predict the efficacy of hormonal therapy at the individual-level, immunohistochemical methods are used to analyze expression of classical molecular biomarkers such as estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PgR), and HER2. However, the current diagnostic standard is not perfect for the individualization of diverse cases. Therefore, establishment of more accurate diagnostics is required. Previously, we established a novel method that enables analysis of ER transcriptional activation potential in clinical specimens using an adenovirus estrogen response element-green fluorescence protein (ERE-GFP) assay system. Using this assay, we assessed the ERE transcriptional activity of 62 primary breast cancer samples. In 40% of samples, we observed that ER protein expression was not consistent with ERE activity. Comparison of ERE activity with clinicopathological information revealed that ERE activity was significantly correlated with the ER target gene, PgR, rather than ER in terms of both protein and mRNA expression. Moreover, subgrouping of Luminal A-type breast cancer samples according to ERE activity revealed that ERα mRNA expression correlated with ER target gene mRNA expression in the high-, but not the low-, ERE-activity group. On the other hand, the low-ERE-activity group showed significantly higher mRNA expression of the malignancy biomarker Ki67 in association with disease recurrence in 5% of patients. Thus, these data suggest that ER expression does not always correlate with ER transcriptional activity. Therefore, in addition to ER protein expression, determination of ERE activity as an ER functional marker will be helpful for analysis of a variety of diverse breast cancer cases and the subsequent course of treatment. PMID:23342282

  14. The glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonist enhances intrinsic peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ activity in endothelial cells

    SciTech Connect

    Onuma, Hirohisa; Inukai, Kouichi Kitahara, Atsuko; Moriya, Rie; Nishida, Susumu; Tanaka, Toshiaki; Katsuta, Hidenori; Takahashi, Kazuto; Sumitani, Yoshikazu; Hosaka, Toshio; Ishida, Hitoshi

    2014-08-22

    Highlights: • PPARγ activation was involved in the GLP-1-mediated anti-inflammatory action. • Exendin-4 enhanced endogenous PPARγ transcriptional activity in HUVECs. • H89, a PKA inhibitor, abolished GLP-1-induced PPARγ enhancement. • The anti-inflammatory effects of GLP-1 may be explained by PPARγ activation. - Abstract: Recent studies have suggested glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) signaling to exert anti-inflammatory effects on endothelial cells, although the precise underlying mechanism remains to be elucidated. In the present study, we investigated whether PPARγ activation is involved in the GLP-1-mediated anti-inflammatory action on endothelial cells. When we treated HUVEC cells with 0.2 ng/ml exendin-4, a GLP-1 receptor agonist, endogenous PPARγ transcriptional activity was significantly elevated, by approximately 20%, as compared with control cells. The maximum PPARγ activity enhancing effect of exendin-4 was observed 12 h after the initiation of incubation with exendin-4. As H89, a PKA inhibitor, abolished GLP-1-induced PPARγ enhancement, the signaling downstream from GLP-1 cross-talk must have been involved in PPARγ activation. In conclusion, our results suggest that GLP-1 has the potential to induce PPARγ activity, partially explaining the anti-inflammatory effects of GLP-1 on endothelial cells. Cross-talk between GLP-1 signaling and PPARγ activation would have major impacts on treatments for patients at high risk for cardiovascular disease.

  15. Identification of Oct4-activating compounds that enhance reprogramming efficiency.

    PubMed

    Li, Wendong; Tian, E; Chen, Zhao-Xia; Sun, Guoqiang; Ye, Peng; Yang, Su; Lu, Dave; Xie, Jun; Ho, Thach-Vu; Tsark, Walter M; Wang, Charles; Horne, David A; Riggs, Arthur D; Yip, M L Richard; Shi, Yanhong

    2012-12-18

    One of the hurdles for practical application of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) is the low efficiency and slow process of reprogramming. Octamer-binding transcription factor 4 (Oct4) has been shown to be an essential regulator of embryonic stem cell (ESC) pluripotency and key to the reprogramming process. To identify small molecules that enhance reprogramming efficiency, we performed a cell-based high-throughput screening of chemical libraries. One of the compounds, termed Oct4-activating compound 1 (OAC1), was found to activate both Oct4 and Nanog promoter-driven luciferase reporter genes. Furthermore, when added to the reprogramming mixture along with the quartet reprogramming factors (Oct4, Sox2, c-Myc, and Klf4), OAC1 enhanced the iPSC reprogramming efficiency and accelerated the reprogramming process. Two structural analogs of OAC1 also activated Oct4 and Nanog promoters and enhanced iPSC formation. The iPSC colonies derived using the Oct4-activating compounds along with the quartet factors exhibited typical ESC morphology, gene-expression pattern, and developmental potential. OAC1 seems to enhance reprogramming efficiency in a unique manner, independent of either inhibition of the p53-p21 pathway or activation of the Wnt-β-catenin signaling. OAC1 increases transcription of the Oct4-Nanog-Sox2 triad and Tet1, a gene known to be involved in DNA demethylation. PMID:23213213

  16. Histone acetyltransferases regulate HIV-1 enhancer activity in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Sheridan, Philip L.; Mayall, Timothy P.; Verdin, Eric; Jones, Katherine A.

    1997-01-01

    Specific inhibitors of histone deacetylase, such as trichostatin A (TSA) and trapoxin (TPX), are potent inducers of HIV-1 transcription in latently infected T-cell lines. Activation of the integrated HIV-1 promoter is accompanied by the loss or rearrangement of a positioned nucleosome (nuc-1) near the viral RNA start site. Here we show that TSA strongly induces HIV-1 transcription on chromatin in vitro, concomitant with an enhancer factor-assisted increase in the level of acetylated histone H4. TSA treatment, however, did not detectably alter enhancer factor binding or the positioning of nuc-1 on the majority of the chromatin templates indicating that protein acetylation and chromatin remodeling may be limiting steps that occur only on transcriptionally competent templates, or that remodeling of nuc-1 requires additional factors. To assess the number of active chromatin templates in vitro, transcription was limited to a single round with low levels of the detergent Sarkosyl. Remarkably, HIV-1 transcription on chromatin was found to arise from a small number of active templates that can each support nearly 100 rounds of transcription, and TSA increased the number of active templates in each round. In contrast, transcription on naked DNA was limited to only a few rounds and was not responsive to TSA. We conclude that HIV-1 enhancer complexes greatly facilitate transcription reinitiation on chromatin in vitro, and act at a limiting step to promote the acetylation of histones or other transcription factors required for HIV-1 enhancer activity. PMID:9407026

  17. Identification of Oct4-activating compounds that enhance reprogramming efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Li, Wendong; Tian, E; Chen, Zhao-Xia; Sun, GuoQiang; Ye, Peng; Yang, Su; Lu, Dave; Xie, Jun; Ho, Thach-Vu; Tsark, Walter M.; Wang, Charles; Horne, David A.; Riggs, Arthur D.; Yip, M. L. Richard; Shi, Yanhong

    2012-01-01

    One of the hurdles for practical application of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) is the low efficiency and slow process of reprogramming. Octamer-binding transcription factor 4 (Oct4) has been shown to be an essential regulator of embryonic stem cell (ESC) pluripotency and key to the reprogramming process. To identify small molecules that enhance reprogramming efficiency, we performed a cell-based high-throughput screening of chemical libraries. One of the compounds, termed Oct4-activating compound 1 (OAC1), was found to activate both Oct4 and Nanog promoter-driven luciferase reporter genes. Furthermore, when added to the reprogramming mixture along with the quartet reprogramming factors (Oct4, Sox2, c-Myc, and Klf4), OAC1 enhanced the iPSC reprogramming efficiency and accelerated the reprogramming process. Two structural analogs of OAC1 also activated Oct4 and Nanog promoters and enhanced iPSC formation. The iPSC colonies derived using the Oct4-activating compounds along with the quartet factors exhibited typical ESC morphology, gene-expression pattern, and developmental potential. OAC1 seems to enhance reprogramming efficiency in a unique manner, independent of either inhibition of the p53-p21 pathway or activation of the Wnt-β-catenin signaling. OAC1 increases transcription of the Oct4-Nanog-Sox2 triad and Tet1, a gene known to be involved in DNA demethylation. PMID:23213213

  18. Risk Factors for Clinically Significant Intimate Partner Violence among Active-Duty Members

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith Slep, Amy M.; Foran, Heather M.; Heyman, Richard E.; Snarr, Jeffery D.

    2011-01-01

    Hypothesized risk factors for men's and women's clinically significant intimate partner violence (CS-IPV) from four ecological levels (i.e., individual, family, workplace, community) were tested in a representative sample of active-duty U.S. Air Force members (N = 42,744). When considered together, we expected only individual and family factors to…

  19. Subjective Significance Shapes Arousal Effects on Modified Stroop Task Performance: A Duality of Activation Mechanisms Account.

    PubMed

    Imbir, Kamil K

    2016-01-01

    Activation mechanisms such as arousal are known to be responsible for slowdown observed in the Emotional Stroop and modified Stroop tasks. Using the duality of mind perspective, we may conclude that both ways of processing information (automatic or controlled) should have their own mechanisms of activation, namely, arousal for an experiential mind, and subjective significance for a rational mind. To investigate the consequences of both, factorial manipulation was prepared. Other factors that influence Stroop task processing such as valence, concreteness, frequency, and word length were controlled. Subjective significance was expected to influence arousal effects. In the first study, the task was to name the color of font for activation charged words. In the second study, activation charged words were, at the same time, combined with an incongruent condition of the classical Stroop task around a fixation point. The task was to indicate the font color for color-meaning words. In both studies, subjective significance was found to shape the arousal impact on performance in terms of the slowdown reduction for words charged with subjective significance. PMID:26869974

  20. Bioengineered nisin derivatives with enhanced activity in complex matrices.

    PubMed

    Rouse, Susan; Field, Des; Daly, Karen M; O'Connor, Paula M; Cotter, Paul D; Hill, Colin; Ross, R Paul

    2012-07-01

    Nisin A is the best known and most extensively characterized lantibiotic. As it is ribosomally synthesized, bioengineering-based strategies can be used to generate variants. We have previously demonstrated that bioengineering of the hinge region of nisin A can result in the generation of variants with enhanced anti-microbial activity against Gram-positive pathogens. Here we created a larger bank of hinge variant producers and screened for producers that exhibit enhanced bioactivity as assessed by agar-based assays against a selection of target strains. Further analysis of 12 'lead' variants reveals that in many cases enhanced bioactivity is not attributable to enhanced specific activity but is instead as a consequence of an enhanced ability to diffuse through complex polymers. In the case of two variants, which contain the residues SVA and NAK, respectively, within the hinge region, we demonstrate that this enhanced trait enables the peptides to dramatically outperform nisin A with respect to controlling Listeria monocytogenes in commercially produced chocolate milk that contains carrageenan as a stabilizer. PMID:22260415

  1. Chemical modification of capuramycins to enhance antibacterial activity

    PubMed Central

    Bogatcheva, Elena; Dubuisson, Tia; Protopopova, Marina; Einck, Leo; Nacy, Carol A.; Reddy, Venkata M.

    2011-01-01

    Objectives To extend capuramycin spectrum of activity beyond mycobacteria and improve intracellular drug activity. Methods Three capuramycin analogues (SQ997, SQ922 and SQ641) were conjugated with different natural and unnatural amino acids or decanoic acid (DEC) through an ester bond at one or more available hydroxyl groups. In vitro activity of the modified compounds was determined against Mycobacterium spp. and representative Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Intracellular activity was evaluated in J774A.1 mouse macrophages infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (H37Rv). Results Acylation of SQ997 and SQ641 with amino undecanoic acid (AUA) improved in vitro activity against most of the bacteria tested. Conjugation of SQ922 with DEC, but not AUA, improved its activity against Gram-positive bacteria. In the presence of efflux pump inhibitor phenylalanine arginine β-naphthyl amide, MICs of SQ997-AUA, SQ641-AUA and SQ922-DEC compounds improved even further against drug-susceptible and drug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. In Gram-negative bacteria, EDTA-mediated permeabilization caused 4- to 16-fold enhancement of the activity of AUA-conjugated SQ997, SQ922 and SQ641. Conjugation of all three capuramycin analogues with AUA improved intracellular killing of H37Rv in murine macrophages. Conclusions Conjugation of capuramycin analogues with AUA or DEC enhanced in vitro activity, extended the spectrum of activity in Gram-positive bacteria and increased intracellular activity against H37Rv. PMID:21186194

  2. Active DNA demethylation at enhancers during the vertebrate phylotypic period.

    PubMed

    Bogdanović, Ozren; Smits, Arne H; de la Calle Mustienes, Elisa; Tena, Juan J; Ford, Ethan; Williams, Ruth; Senanayake, Upeka; Schultz, Matthew D; Hontelez, Saartje; van Kruijsbergen, Ila; Rayon, Teresa; Gnerlich, Felix; Carell, Thomas; Veenstra, Gert Jan C; Manzanares, Miguel; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana; Ecker, Joseph R; Vermeulen, Michiel; Gómez-Skarmeta, José Luis; Lister, Ryan

    2016-04-01

    The vertebrate body plan and organs are shaped during a conserved embryonic phase called the phylotypic stage. However, the mechanisms that guide the epigenome through this transition and their evolutionary conservation remain elusive. Here we report widespread DNA demethylation of enhancers during the phylotypic period in zebrafish, Xenopus tropicalis and mouse. These enhancers are linked to developmental genes that display coordinated transcriptional and epigenomic changes in the diverse vertebrates during embryogenesis. Binding of Tet proteins to (hydroxy)methylated DNA and enrichment of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in these regions implicated active DNA demethylation in this process. Furthermore, loss of function of Tet1, Tet2 and Tet3 in zebrafish reduced chromatin accessibility and increased methylation levels specifically at these enhancers, indicative of DNA methylation being an upstream regulator of phylotypic enhancer function. Overall, our study highlights a regulatory module associated with the most conserved phase of vertebrate embryogenesis and suggests an ancient developmental role for Tet dioxygenases. PMID:26928226

  3. Active DNA demethylation at enhancers during the vertebrate phylotypic period.

    PubMed

    Bogdanović, Ozren; Smits, Arne H; de la Calle Mustienes, Elisa; Tena, Juan J; Ford, Ethan; Williams, Ruth; Senanayake, Upeka; Schultz, Matthew D; Hontelez, Saartje; van Kruijsbergen, Ila; Rayon, Teresa; Gnerlich, Felix; Carell, Thomas; Veenstra, Gert Jan C; Manzanares, Miguel; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana; Ecker, Joseph R; Vermeulen, Michiel; Gómez-Skarmeta, José Luis; Lister, Ryan

    2016-04-01

    The vertebrate body plan and organs are shaped during a conserved embryonic phase called the phylotypic stage. However, the mechanisms that guide the epigenome through this transition and their evolutionary conservation remain elusive. Here we report widespread DNA demethylation of enhancers during the phylotypic period in zebrafish, Xenopus tropicalis and mouse. These enhancers are linked to developmental genes that display coordinated transcriptional and epigenomic changes in the diverse vertebrates during embryogenesis. Binding of Tet proteins to (hydroxy)methylated DNA and enrichment of 5-hydroxymethylcytosine in these regions implicated active DNA demethylation in this process. Furthermore, loss of function of Tet1, Tet2 and Tet3 in zebrafish reduced chromatin accessibility and increased methylation levels specifically at these enhancers, indicative of DNA methylation being an upstream regulator of phylotypic enhancer function. Overall, our study highlights a regulatory module associated with the most conserved phase of vertebrate embryogenesis and suggests an ancient developmental role for Tet dioxygenases.

  4. Enhancement of visual responsiveness by spontaneous local network activity in vivo.

    PubMed

    Haider, Bilal; Duque, Alvaro; Hasenstaub, Andrea R; Yu, Yuguo; McCormick, David A

    2007-06-01

    Spontaneous activity within local circuits affects the integrative properties of neurons and networks. We have previously shown that neocortical network activity exhibits a balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic potentials, and such activity has significant effects on synaptic transmission, action potential generation, and spike timing. However, whether such activity facilitates or reduces sensory responses has yet to be clearly determined. We examined this hypothesis in the primary visual cortex in vivo during slow oscillations in ketamine-xylazine anesthetized cats. We measured network activity (Up states) with extracellular recording, while simultaneously recording postsynaptic potentials (PSPs) and action potentials in nearby cells. Stimulating the receptive field revealed that spiking responses of both simple and complex cells were significantly enhanced (>2-fold) during network activity, as were spiking responses to intracellular injection of varying amplitude artificial conductance stimuli. Visually evoked PSPs were not significantly different in amplitude during network activity or quiescence; instead, spontaneous depolarization caused by network activity brought these evoked PSPs closer to firing threshold. Further examination revealed that visual responsiveness was gradually enhanced by progressive membrane potential depolarization. These spontaneous depolarizations enhanced responsiveness to stimuli of varying contrasts, resulting in an upward (multiplicative) scaling of the contrast response function. Our results suggest that small increases in ongoing balanced network activity that result in depolarization may provide a rapid and generalized mechanism to control the responsiveness (gain) of cortical neurons, such as occurs during shifts in spatial attention.

  5. Significance of Additional Non-Mass Enhancement in Patients with Breast Cancer on Preoperative 3T Dynamic Contrast Enhanced MRI of the Breast

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Yun Hee; Cho, Kyu Ran; Park, Eun Kyung; Seo, Bo Kyoung; Woo, Ok Hee; Cho, Sung Bum; Bae, Jeoung Won

    2016-01-01

    Background In preoperative assessment of breast cancer, MRI has been shown to identify more additional breast lesions than are detectable using conventional imaging techniques. The characterization of additional lesions is more important than detection for optimal surgical treatment. Additional breast lesions can be included in focus, mass, and non-mass enhancement (NME) on MRI. According to the fifth edition of the breast imaging reporting and data system (BI-RADS®), which includes several changes in the NME descriptors, few studies to date have evaluated NME in preoperative assessment of breast cancer. Objectives We investigated the diagnostic accuracy of BI-RADS descriptors in predicting malignancy for additional NME lesions detected on preoperative 3T dynamic contrast enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI) in patients with newly diagnosed breast cancer. Patients and Methods Between January 2008 and December 2012, 88 patients were enrolled in our study, all with NME lesions other than the index cancer on preoperative 3T DCE-MRI and all with accompanying histopathologic examination. The MRI findings were analyzed according to the BI-RADS MRI lexicon. We evaluated the size, distribution, internal enhancement pattern, and location of NME lesions relative to the index cancer (i.e., same quadrant, different quadrant, or contralateral breast). Results On histopathologic analysis of the 88 NME lesions, 73 (83%) were malignant and 15 (17%) were benign. Lesion size did not differ significantly between malignant and benign lesions (P = 0.410). Malignancy was more frequent in linear (P = 0.005) and segmental (P = 0.011) distributions, and benignancy was more frequent in focal (P = 0.004) and regional (P < 0.001) NME lesions. The highest positive predictive value (PPV) for malignancy occurred in segmental (96.8%), linear (95.1%), clustered ring (100%), and clumped (92.0%) enhancement. Asymmetry demonstrated a high positive predictive value of 85.9%. The frequency of malignancy was higher

  6. Significance probability mapping: an aid in the topographic analysis of brain electrical activity.

    PubMed

    Duffy, F H; Bartels, P H; Burchfiel, J L

    1981-05-01

    We illustrate the application of significance probability mapping (SPM) to the analysis of topographic maps of spectral analyzed EEG and visual evoked potential (VEP) activity from patients with brain tumors, boys with dyslexia, and control subjects. When the VEP topographic plots of tumor patients were displayed as number of standard deviations from a reference mean, more subjects were correctly identified than by inspection of the underlying raw data. When topographic plots of EEG alpha activity obtained while listening to speech or music were compared by t statistic to plots of resting alpha activity, regions of cortex presumably activated by speech or music were delineated. DIfferent regions were defined in dyslexic boys and controls. We propose that SPM will prove valuable in the regional localization of normal and abnormal functions in other clinical situations. PMID:6165544

  7. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Zhang, Yu; Duan, Junxin; Tang, Lan; Wu, Wenping

    2016-06-14

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  8. Women's Health-Enhancing Physical Activity and Eudaimonic Well Being

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferguson, Leah J.; Kowalski, Kent C.; Mack, Diane E.; Wilson, Philip M.; Crocker, Peter R. E.

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we explored the role of health-enhancing physical activity (HEPA; Miilunpalo, 2001) in women's eudaimonic well being (i.e., psychological flourishing at one's maximal potential; Ryff, 1989). We used a quantitative approach (N = 349) to explore the relationship between HEPA and eudaimonic well being. While HEPA was not related to…

  9. Brg1 modulates enhancer activation in mesoderm lineage commitment

    DOE PAGES

    Alexander, Jeffrey M.; Hota, Swetansu K.; He, Daniel; Thomas, Sean; Ho, Lena; Pennacchio, Len A.; Bruneau, B. G.

    2015-03-26

    The interplay between different levels of gene regulation in modulating developmental transcriptional programs, such as histone modifications and chromatin remodeling, is not well understood. Here, we show that the chromatin remodeling factor Brg1 is required for enhancer activation in mesoderm induction. In an embryonic stem cell-based directed differentiation assay, the absence of Brg1 results in a failure of cardiomyocyte differentiation and broad deregulation of lineage-specific gene expression during mesoderm induction. We find that Brg1 co-localizes with H3K27ac at distal enhancers and is required for robust H3K27 acetylation at distal enhancers that are activated during mesoderm induction. Brg1 is also requiredmore » to maintain Polycomb-mediated repression of non-mesodermal developmental regulators, suggesting cooperativity between Brg1 and Polycomb complexes. Thus, Brg1 is essential for modulating active and repressive chromatin states during mesoderm lineage commitment, in particular the activation of developmentally important enhancers. In conclusion, these findings demonstrate interplay between chromatin remodeling complexes and histone modifications that, together, ensure robust and broad gene regulation during crucial lineage commitment decisions.« less

  10. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and nucleic acids encoding same

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, Kimberly; Harris, Paul; Zaretsky, Elizabeth; Re, Edward; Vlasenko, Elena; McFarland, Keith; Lopez de Leon, Alfredo

    2012-10-16

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods for producing and using the polypeptides.

  11. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and nucleic acids encoding same

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, Kimberly; Harris, Paul; Zaretsky, Elizabeth; Re, Edward; Vlasenko, Elena; McFarland, Keith; Lopez de Leon, Alfredo

    2014-09-30

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods for producing and using the polypeptides.

  12. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    SciTech Connect

    Maiyuran, Suchindra; Kramer, Randall; Harris, Paul

    2013-10-29

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  13. Brg1 modulates enhancer activation in mesoderm lineage commitment

    SciTech Connect

    Alexander, Jeffrey M.; Hota, Swetansu K.; He, Daniel; Thomas, Sean; Ho, Lena; Pennacchio, Len A.; Bruneau, B. G.

    2015-03-26

    The interplay between different levels of gene regulation in modulating developmental transcriptional programs, such as histone modifications and chromatin remodeling, is not well understood. Here, we show that the chromatin remodeling factor Brg1 is required for enhancer activation in mesoderm induction. In an embryonic stem cell-based directed differentiation assay, the absence of Brg1 results in a failure of cardiomyocyte differentiation and broad deregulation of lineage-specific gene expression during mesoderm induction. We find that Brg1 co-localizes with H3K27ac at distal enhancers and is required for robust H3K27 acetylation at distal enhancers that are activated during mesoderm induction. Brg1 is also required to maintain Polycomb-mediated repression of non-mesodermal developmental regulators, suggesting cooperativity between Brg1 and Polycomb complexes. Thus, Brg1 is essential for modulating active and repressive chromatin states during mesoderm lineage commitment, in particular the activation of developmentally important enhancers. In conclusion, these findings demonstrate interplay between chromatin remodeling complexes and histone modifications that, together, ensure robust and broad gene regulation during crucial lineage commitment decisions.

  14. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Dotson, William D.; Greenier, Jennifer; Ding, Hanshu

    2009-05-19

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated nucleic acids encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the nucleic acids as well as methods for producing and using the polypeptides.

  15. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Dotson, William D.; Greenier, Jennifer; Ding, Hanshu

    2007-09-18

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated nucleic acids encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the nucleic acids as well as methods for producing and using the polypeptides.

  16. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    SciTech Connect

    Lopez de Leon, Alfredo; Ding, Hanshu; Brown, Kimberly

    2012-06-26

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  17. Polypeptide from a cellulolytic fungus having cellulolytic enhancing activity

    DOEpatents

    Brown, Kimberly; Harris, Paul; Zaretsky, Elizabeth; Re, Edward; Vlasenko, Elena; McFarland, Keith; Lopez de Leon, Alfredo

    2008-04-22

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods for producing and using the polypeptides.

  18. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    SciTech Connect

    Lopez de Leon, Alfredo; Ding, Hanshu; Brown, Kimberly

    2011-10-25

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  19. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Schnorr, Kirk; Kramer, Randall

    2016-08-09

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  20. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Schnorr, Kirk; Kramer, Randall

    2016-04-05

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  1. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Duan, Junxin; Zhang, Yu; Joergensen, Christian; Kramer, Randall

    2014-09-16

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  2. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding the same

    DOEpatents

    Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Duan, Junxin; Zhang, Yu; Jorgensen, Christian Isak; Kramer, Randall

    2013-12-24

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  3. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Duan, Junxin; Zhang, Yu; Jorgensen, Christian Isak; Kramer, Randall

    2012-04-03

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  4. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding the same

    DOEpatents

    Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Duan, Junxin; Wu, Wenping; Kramer, Randall

    2013-11-19

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  5. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Duan, Junxin; Zhang, Yu; Jorgensen, Christian Isak; Kramer, Randall

    2013-04-16

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  6. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Duan, Junxin; Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Wu, Wenping; Quinlan, Jason; Kramer, Randall

    2013-06-18

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  7. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Duan, Junxin; Liu, Ye; Tang, Lan; Wu, Wenping; Quinlan, Jason; Kramer, Randall

    2012-03-27

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  8. Polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and polynucleotides encoding same

    DOEpatents

    Tang, Lan; Liu, Ye; Duan, Junxin; Wu, Wenping; Kramer, Randall

    2014-10-21

    The present invention relates to isolated polypeptides having cellulolytic enhancing activity and isolated polynucleotides encoding the polypeptides. The invention also relates to nucleic acid constructs, vectors, and host cells comprising the polynucleotides as well as methods of producing and using the polypeptides.

  9. Enhanced lymphokine-activated killer cell activity by an immunomodulator, Roquinimex.

    PubMed Central

    Vaz, F.; Silva, M. R.; Ascensao, J. L.

    1995-01-01

    Roquinimex (Roq) is an immunomodulator known to stimulate cellular immune responses. It is currently used for immunotherapy after bone marrow transplantation (BMT). One of the major features of this compound is an enhancement of natural killer (NK) cell activity and numbers. We studied the in vitro effect of Roq on human peripheral blood NK and adherent lymphokine-activated killer cell (ALAK) activities. In cultures supplemented with recombinant interleukin 2 (rIL-2) (1000 U ml-1) and Roq a significant increase in NK and LAK function was observed without a parallel increase in cell numbers. We also examined the generation of NK cells from human bone marrow (BM) immature progenitors, obtained by purging with 4-hydroperoxycyclophosphamide (4HC). NK cell numbers and activity were both increased when cultures with rIL-2 (10 U ml-1) were supplemented with Roq. These results confirm findings obtained in vivo and in vitro in the murine system and suggest that Roq is an active agent on these lymphoid populations. These properties and good tolerability make Roq an attractive tool for immunotherapy. PMID:8519666

  10. Are secular correlations between sunspots, geomagnetic activity, and global temperature significant?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Love, J.J.; Mursula, K.; Tsai, V.C.; Perkins, D.M.

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies have led to speculation that solar-terrestrial interaction, measured by sunspot number and geomagnetic activity, has played an important role in global temperature change over the past century or so. We treat this possibility as an hypothesis for testing. We examine the statistical significance of cross-correlations between sunspot number, geomagnetic activity, and global surface temperature for the years 1868-2008, solar cycles 11-23. The data contain substantial autocorrelation and nonstationarity, properties that are incompatible with standard measures of cross-correlational significance, but which can be largely removed by averaging over solar cycles and first-difference detrending. Treated data show an expected statistically- significant correlation between sunspot number and geomagnetic activity, Pearson p < 10-4, but correlations between global temperature and sunspot number (geomagnetic activity) are not significant, p = 0.9954, (p = 0.8171). In other words, straightforward analysis does not support widely-cited suggestions that these data record a prominent role for solar-terrestrial interaction in global climate change. With respect to the sunspot-number, geomagnetic-activity, and global-temperature data, three alternative hypotheses remain difficult to reject: (1) the role of solar-terrestrial interaction in recent climate change is contained wholly in long-term trends and not in any shorter-term secular variation, or, (2) an anthropogenic signal is hiding correlation between solar-terrestrial variables and global temperature, or, (3) the null hypothesis, recent climate change has not been influenced by solar-terrestrial interaction. ?? 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

  11. Limiting prothrombin activation to meizothrombin is compatible with survival but significantly alters hemostasis in mice.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Maureen A; Kombrinck, Keith W; McElhinney, Kathryn E; Sweet, David R; Flick, Matthew J; Palumbo, Joseph S; Cheng, Mei; Esmon, Naomi L; Esmon, Charles T; Brill, Alexander; Wagner, Denisa D; Degen, Jay L; Mullins, Eric S

    2016-08-01

    Thrombin-mediated proteolysis is central to hemostatic function but also plays a prominent role in multiple disease processes. The proteolytic conversion of fII to α-thrombin (fIIa) by the prothrombinase complex occurs through 2 parallel pathways: (1) the inactive intermediate, prethrombin; or (2) the proteolytically active intermediate, meizothrombin (fIIa(MZ)). FIIa(MZ) has distinct catalytic properties relative to fIIa, including diminished fibrinogen cleavage and increased protein C activation. Thus, fII activation may differentially influence hemostasis and disease depending on the pathway of activation. To determine the in vivo physiologic and pathologic consequences of restricting thrombin generation to fIIa(MZ), mutations were introduced into the endogenous fII gene, resulting in expression of prothrombin carrying 3 amino acid substitutions (R157A, R268A, and K281A) to limit activation events to yield only fIIa(MZ) Homozygous fII(MZ) mice are viable, express fII levels comparable with fII(WT) mice, and have reproductive success. Although in vitro studies revealed delayed generation of fIIa(MZ) enzyme activity, platelet aggregation by fII(MZ) is similar to fII(WT) Consistent with prior analyses of human fIIa(MZ), significant prolongation of clotting times was observed for fII(MZ) plasma. Adult fII(MZ) animals displayed significantly compromised hemostasis in tail bleeding assays, but did not demonstrate overt bleeding. More notably, fII(MZ) mice had 2 significant phenotypic advantages over fII(WT) animals: protection from occlusive thrombosis after arterial injury and markedly diminished metastatic potential in a setting of experimental tumor metastasis to the lung. Thus, these novel animals will provide a valuable tool to assess the role of both fIIa and fIIa(MZ) in vivo. PMID:27252233

  12. Increased microcirculation detected by dynamic contrast-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging is of prognostic significance in asymptomatic myeloma.

    PubMed

    Hillengass, Jens; Ritsch, Judith; Merz, Maximilian; Wagner, Barbara; Kunz, Christina; Hielscher, Thomas; Laue, Hendrik; Bäuerle, Tobias; Zechmann, Christian M; Ho, Anthony D; Schlemmer, Heinz-Peter; Goldschmidt, Hartmut; Moehler, Thomas M; Delorme, Stefan

    2016-07-01

    This prospective study aimed to investigate the prognostic significance of dynamic contrast enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) as a non-invasive imaging technique delivering the quantitative parameters amplitude A (reflecting blood volume) and exchange rate constant kep (reflecting vascular permeability) in patients with asymptomatic monoclonal plasma cell diseases. We analysed DCE-MRI parameters in 33 healthy controls and 148 patients with monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) or smouldering multiple myeloma (SMM) according to the 2003 IMWG guidelines. All individuals underwent standardized DCE-MRI of the lumbar spine. Regions of interest were drawn manually on T1-weighted images encompassing the bone marrow of each of the 5 lumbar vertebrae sparing the vertebral vessel. Prognostic significance for median of amplitude A (univariate: P < 0·001, hazard ratio (HR) 2·42, multivariate P = 0·02, HR 2·7) and exchange rate constant kep (univariate P = 0·03, HR 1·92, multivariate P = 0·46, HR 1·5) for time to progression of 79 patients with SMM was found. Patients with amplitude A above the optimal cut-off point of 0·89 arbitrary units had a 2-year progression rate into symptomatic disease of 80%. In conclusion, DCE-MRI parameters are of prognostic significance for time to progression in patients with SMM but not in individuals with MGUS. PMID:26991959

  13. New approaches to enhance active steering system functionalities: preliminary results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Serarslan, Benan

    2014-09-01

    An important development of the steering systems in general is active steering systems like active front steering and steer-by-wire systems. In this paper the current functional possibilities in application of active steering systems are explored. A new approach and additional functionalities are presented that can be implemented to the active steering systems without additional hardware such as new sensors and electronic control units. Commercial active steering systems are controlling the steering angle depending on the driving situation only. This paper introduce methods for enhancing active steering system functionalities depending not only on the driving situation but also vehicle parameters like vehicle mass, tyre and road condition. In this regard, adaptation of the steering ratio as a function of above mentioned vehicle parameters is presented with examples. With some selected vehicle parameter changes, the reduction of the undesired influences on vehicle dynamics of these parameter changes has been demonstrated theoretically with simulations and with real-time driving measurements.

  14. Activity in ventromedial prefrontal cortex during self-related processing: positive subjective value or personal significance?

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Marcia K.

    2015-01-01

    Well-being and subjective experience of a coherent world depend on our sense of ‘self’ and relations between the self and the environment (e.g. people, objects and ideas). The ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vMPFC) is involved in self-related processing, and disrupted vMPFC activity is associated with disruptions of emotional/social functioning (e.g. depression and autism). Clarifying precise function(s) of vMPFC in self-related processing is an area of active investigation. In this study, we sought to more specifically characterize the function of vMPFC in self-related processing, focusing on two alternative accounts: (i) assignment of positive subjective value to self-related information and (ii) assignment of personal significance to self-related information. During functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), participants imagined owning objects associated with either their perceived ingroup or outgroup. We found that for ingroup-associated objects, vMPFC showed greater activity for objects with increased than decreased post-ownership preference. In contrast, for outgroup-associated objects, vMPFC showed greater activity for objects with decreased than increased post-ownership preference. Our findings support the idea that the function of vMPFC in self-related processing may not be to represent/evaluate the ‘positivity’ or absolute preference of self-related information but to assign personal significance to it based on its meaning/function for the self. PMID:24837477

  15. Utilizing energy efficient microwave sintering to significantly enhance the tensile response of a lead-free solder

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nai, S. M. L.; Kuma, J. V. M.; Gupta, M.

    2009-01-01

    This study investigates the effects of conventional sintering and hybrid microwave sintering techniques on the microstructure evolution and tensile properties of a Sn-Ag-Cu solder. A significant energy saving of up to 99% was achieved using the hybrid microwave assisted sintering approach. Hybrid microwave sintered samples exhibited better densification (in terms of lower porosity level) and this indicates the ability of microwaves to sinter solder materials more effectively. Furthermore, tensile results revealed that samples hybrid microwave sintered at 210 °C exhibited the best enhancement in yield strength and ultimate tensile strength, with no compromise in the failure strain, as compared with other widely used commercial solders. The morphology of pores and interparticle spacing were observed to be the two key factors influencing the mechanical properties of the solders.

  16. Enhancing commerical aircraft explosion survivability via active venting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Veldman, Roger Lee

    2001-10-01

    A new technique for enhancing aircraft safety in the event of an on-board explosion was studied. The method under study employs deployable vent panels located on the fuselage which are activated by an array of pressure sensors in the aircraft interior. In the event that an explosion is detected, appropriate vent panels are rapidly released from the aircraft. This approach seeks to provide timely relief of explosive pressures within an aircraft to prevent catastrophic structural failure. In this study, the approximate time scale of an explosive detonation and the subsequent sensing and electronic processing was determined. Then, the actuation response times of several vent panel systems were determined through analytical modeling and scale-model experimental testing with good correlation achieved. A scale-model experimental analysis was also conducted to determine the decompression venting time of an aircraft fuselage under a variety of conditions. Two different sized pressure vessels were used in the experimental work and the results correlated quite favorably with an analytical model for decompression times. Finally, a dynamic finite element analysis was conducted to determine the response of a portion of a typical commercial aircraft fuselage subjected to explosive pressure loading. It was determined from this analysis that the pre-stressing of the fuselage from cabin pressurization increases the damage vulnerability of a commercial aircraft fuselage to internal explosions. It was also learned from the structural analysis that the peak fuselage strains due to blast loading occur quickly (within approximately 2 milliseconds) while it was conservatively estimated that approximately 5 to 7 milliseconds would be required to sense the explosion, to actuate selected vent panels, and to initiate the release of cabin pressure from the aircraft. Additionally, since it was determined that predicted fuselage strains for both pressurized and unpressurized load cases remained

  17. Enhancer hijacking activates GFI1 family oncogenes in medulloblastoma

    PubMed Central

    Northcott, Paul A; Lee, Catherine; Zichner, Thomas; Stütz, Adrian M; Erkek, Serap; Kawauchi, Daisuke; Shih, David JH; Hovestadt, Volker; Zapatka, Marc; Sturm, Dominik; Jones, David TW; Kool, Marcel; Remke, Marc; Cavalli, Florence; Zuyderduyn, Scott; Bader, Gary; VandenBerg, Scott; Esparza, Lourdes Adriana; Ryzhova, Marina; Wang, Wei; Wittmann, Andrea; Stark, Sebastian; Sieber, Laura; Seker-Cin, Huriye; Linke, Linda; Kratochwil, Fabian; Jäger, Natalie; Buchhalter, Ivo; Imbusch, Charles D; Zipprich, Gideon; Raeder, Benjamin; Schmidt, Sabine; Diessl, Nicolle; Wolf, Stephan; Wiemann, Stefan; Brors, Benedikt; Lawerenz, Chris; Eils, Jürgen; Warnatz, Hans-Jörg; Risch, Thomas; Yaspo, Marie-Laure; Weber, Ursula D; Bartholomae, Cynthia C; von Kalle, Christof; Turányi, Eszter; Hauser, Peter; Sanden, Emma; Darabi, Anna; Siesjö, Peter; Sterba, Jaroslav; Zitterbart, Karel; Sumerauer, David; van Sluis, Peter; Versteeg, Rogier; Volckmann, Richard; Koster, Jan; Schuhmann, Martin U; Ebinger, Martin; Grimes, H. Leighton; Robinson, Giles W; Gajjar, Amar; Mynarek, Martin; von Hoff, Katja; Rutkowski, Stefan; Pietsch, Torsten; Scheurlen, Wolfram; Felsberg, Jörg; Reifenberger, Guido; Kulozik, Andreas E; von Deimlmg, Andreas; Witt, Olaf; Eils, Roland; Gilbertson, Richard J; Korshunov, Andrey; Taylor, Michael D; Lichter, Peter; Korbel, Jan O; Wechsler-Reya, Robert J; Pfister, Stefan M

    2014-01-01

    Summary Paragraph Medulloblastoma is a highly malignant paediatric brain tumour currently treated with a combination of surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy, posing a considerable burden of toxicity to the developing child. Genomics has illuminated the extensive intertumoural heterogeneity of medulloblastoma, identifying four distinct molecular subgroups. Group 3 and Group 4 subgroup medulloblastomas account for the majority of paediatric cases; yet, oncogenic drivers for these subtypes remain largely unidentified. Here we describe a series of prevalent, highly disparate genomic structural variants, restricted to Groups 3 and 4, resulting in specific and mutually exclusive activation of the growth factor independent 1 family protooncogenes, GFI1 and GFI1B. Somatic structural variants juxtapose GFI1/GFI1B coding sequences proximal to active enhancer elements, including super-enhancers, instigating oncogenic activity. Our results, supported by evidence from mouse models, identify GFI1 and GFI1B as prominent medulloblastoma oncogenes and implicate ‘enhancer hijacking’ as an efficient mechanism driving oncogene activation in a childhood cancer. PMID:25043047

  18. Acute moderate exercise enhances compensatory brain activation in older adults.

    PubMed

    Hyodo, Kazuki; Dan, Ippeita; Suwabe, Kazuya; Kyutoku, Yasushi; Yamada, Yuhki; Akahori, Mitsuya; Byun, Kyeongho; Kato, Morimasa; Soya, Hideaki

    2012-11-01

    A growing number of reports state that regular exercise enhances brain function in older adults. Recently a functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) study revealed that an acute bout of moderate exercise enhanced activation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (L-DLPFC) associated with Stroop interference in young adults. Whether this acute effect is also applicable to older adults was examined. Sixteen older adults performed a color-word matching Stroop task before and after 10 minutes of exercise on a cycle ergometer at a moderate intensity. Cortical hemodynamics of the prefrontal area was monitored with a fNIRS during the Stroop task. We analyzed Stroop interference (incongruent-neutral) as Stroop performance. Though activation for Stroop interference was found in the bilateral prefrontal area before the acute bout of exercise, activation of the right frontopolar area (R-FPA) was enhanced after exercise. In the majority of participants, this coincided with improved performance reflected in Stroop interference results. Thus, an acute bout of moderate exercise improved Stroop performance in older adults, and this was associated with contralateral compensatory activation. PMID:22300952

  19. Acute moderate exercise enhances compensatory brain activation in older adults.

    PubMed

    Hyodo, Kazuki; Dan, Ippeita; Suwabe, Kazuya; Kyutoku, Yasushi; Yamada, Yuhki; Akahori, Mitsuya; Byun, Kyeongho; Kato, Morimasa; Soya, Hideaki

    2012-11-01

    A growing number of reports state that regular exercise enhances brain function in older adults. Recently a functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) study revealed that an acute bout of moderate exercise enhanced activation of the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (L-DLPFC) associated with Stroop interference in young adults. Whether this acute effect is also applicable to older adults was examined. Sixteen older adults performed a color-word matching Stroop task before and after 10 minutes of exercise on a cycle ergometer at a moderate intensity. Cortical hemodynamics of the prefrontal area was monitored with a fNIRS during the Stroop task. We analyzed Stroop interference (incongruent-neutral) as Stroop performance. Though activation for Stroop interference was found in the bilateral prefrontal area before the acute bout of exercise, activation of the right frontopolar area (R-FPA) was enhanced after exercise. In the majority of participants, this coincided with improved performance reflected in Stroop interference results. Thus, an acute bout of moderate exercise improved Stroop performance in older adults, and this was associated with contralateral compensatory activation.

  20. Gramicidin D enhances the antibacterial activity of fluoride.

    PubMed

    Nelson, James W; Zhou, Zhiyuan; Breaker, Ronald R

    2014-07-01

    Fluoride is a toxic anion found in many natural environments. One of the major bacterial defenses against fluoride is the cell envelope, which limits passage of the membrane-impermeant fluoride anion. Accordingly, compounds that enhance the permeability of bacterial membranes to fluoride should also enhance fluoride toxicity. In this study, we demonstrate that the pore-forming antibiotic gramicidin D increases fluoride uptake in Bacillus subtilis and that the antibacterial activity of this compound is potentiated by fluoride. Polymyxin B, another membrane-targeting antibiotic with a different mechanism of action, shows no such improvement. These results, along with previous findings, indicate that certain compounds that destabilize bacterial cell envelopes can enhance the toxicity of fluoride.

  1. Biological significance of nuclear localization of mitogen-activated protein kinase Pmk1 in fission yeast.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Mir, Laura; Franco, Alejandro; Madrid, Marisa; Vicente-Soler, Jero; Villar-Tajadura, M Antonia; Soto, Teresa; Pérez, Pilar; Gacto, Mariano; Cansado, José

    2012-07-27

    Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling pathways play a fundamental role in the response of eukaryotic cells to environmental changes. Also, much evidence shows that the stimulus-dependent nuclear targeting of this class of regulatory kinases is crucial for adequate regulation of distinct cellular events. In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, the cell integrity MAPK pathway, whose central element is the MAPK Pmk1, regulates multiple processes such as cell wall integrity, vacuole fusion, cytokinesis, and ionic homeostasis. In non-stressed cells Pmk1 is constitutively localized in both cytoplasm and nucleus, and its localization pattern appears unaffected by its activation status or in response to stress, thus questioning the biological significance of the presence of this MAPK into the nucleus. We have addressed this issue by characterizing mutants expressing Pmk1 versions excluded from the cell nucleus and anchored to the plasma membrane in different genetic backgrounds. Although nuclear Pmk1 partially regulates cell wall integrity at a transcriptional level, membrane-tethered Pmk1 performs many of the biological functions assigned to wild type MAPK like regulation of chloride homeostasis, vacuole fusion, and cellular separation. However, we found that down-regulation of nuclear Pmk1 by MAPK phosphatases induced by the stress activated protein kinase pathway is important for the fine modulation of extranuclear Pmk1 activity. These results highlight the importance of the control of MAPK activity at subcellular level.

  2. Antibacterial activity of Sonoran propolis and some of its constituents against clinically significant Vibrio species.

    PubMed

    Navarro-Navarro, Moises; Ruiz-Bustos, Patricia; Valencia, Dora; Robles-Zepeda, Ramón; Ruiz-Bustos, Eduardo; Virués, Claudia; Hernandez, Javier; Domínguez, Zaira; Velazquez, Carlos

    2013-02-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate the anti-Vibrio activity of propolis collected from three different areas of the Sonoran Desert in northwestern, Mexico [Pueblo de Alamos (PAP), Ures (UP), and Caborca (CP)]. The anti-Vibrio spp. activity of Sonoran propolis was determined by the broth microdilution method. UP propolis showed the highest antibacterial activity [minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC(50))<50 μg mL(-1)] against Vibrio spp. (UP>CP>PAP). UP propolis significantly inhibited the growth of Vibrio cholerae O1 serotype Inaba (MIC(50)<50 μg mL(-1)), V. cholerae non-O1 (MIC(50)<50 μg mL(-1)), V. vulnificus (MIC(50)<50 μg mL(-1)), and V. cholerae O1 serotype Ogawa (MIC(50) 100 μg mL(-1)), in a concentration-dependent manner. The UP propolis constituents, galangin and caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), exhibited a potent growth inhibitory activity (MIC(50) 0.05-0.1 mmol l(-1)) against V. cholerae strains (non-O1 and serotype Ogawa). The strong anti-Vibrio activity of Sonoran propolis and some of its chemical constituents (galangin and CAPE) support further studies on the clinical applications of this natural bee product against different Vibrio spp., mainly V. cholerae.

  3. Heparin enhances osteoclastic bone resorption by inhibiting osteoprotegerin activity.

    PubMed

    Irie, Atsushi; Takami, Masamichi; Kubo, Hideo; Sekino-Suzuki, Naoko; Kasahara, Kohji; Sanai, Yutaka

    2007-08-01

    Heparin is a highly sulfated glycosaminoglycan and has been shown to activate osteoclastic bone resorption though how is not yet clear. Here we investigate the molecule involved in heparin-induced activation of osteoclasts using an in vitro osteoclast culture assay. The formation and activation of osteoclasts are induced by receptor activator of NFkappaB ligand (RANKL) on osteoblasts, and inhibited by osteoprotegerin (OPG), a decoy receptor of RANKL, which is secreted from osteoblasts. In a coculture of mouse bone marrow cells and osteoblasts treated with 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D(3) and prostaglandin E(2) on dentin slices, the bone marrow cells differentiate into osteoclasts, and resorption pits are formed on the dentin slices. Addition of heparin, various glycosaminoglycans, and chemically modified heparins to the coculture reveals that heparin enhances the pit-forming activity of osteoclasts, and this effect of heparin on the activation of osteoclasts is dependent on its sugar chain structure. By contrast, mRNA expression levels of RANKL, RANK, and OPG in the coculture are not altered by heparin treatment. Furthermore, neither RANK nor RANKL binds to heparin, suggesting that heparin does not directly interact with these proteins. Instead, heparin specifically binds to OPG and prevents OPG-mediated inhibition of osteoclastic bone resorption in the coculture. Heparin treatment does not enhance osteoclastic bone resorption in a monoculture of osteoclasts derived from bone marrow cells, and in the coculture using osteoblasts from OPG-deficient mice. A (125)I-OPG binding assay showed that OPG binds to osteoblasts and that this binding is inhibited by the addition of heparin, suggesting that OPG binds to RANKL on the osteoblast membrane and that heparin blocks this interaction. These results demonstrate that heparin enhances osteoclastic bone resorption by inhibiting OPG activity.

  4. Enhancing learning in geosciences and water engineering via lab activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Valyrakis, Manousos; Cheng, Ming

    2016-04-01

    This study focuses on the utilisation of lab based activities to enhance the learning experience of engineering students studying Water Engineering and Geosciences. In particular, the use of modern highly visual and tangible presentation techniques within an appropriate laboratory based space are used to introduce undergraduate students to advanced engineering concepts. A specific lab activity, namely "Flood-City", is presented as a case study to enhance the active engagement rate, improve the learning experience of the students and better achieve the intended learning objectives of the course within a broad context of the engineering and geosciences curriculum. Such activities, have been used over the last few years from the Water Engineering group @ Glasgow, with success for outreach purposes (e.g. Glasgow Science Festival and demos at the Glasgow Science Centre and Kelvingrove museum). The activity involves a specific setup of the demonstration flume in a sand-box configuration, with elements and activities designed so as to gamely the overall learning activity. Social media platforms can also be used effectively to the same goals, particularly in cases were the students already engage in these online media. To assess the effectiveness of this activity a purpose designed questionnaire is offered to the students. Specifically, the questionnaire covers several aspects that may affect student learning, performance and satisfaction, such as students' motivation, factors to effective learning (also assessed by follow-up quizzes), and methods of communication and assessment. The results, analysed to assess the effectiveness of the learning activity as the students perceive it, offer a promising potential for the use of such activities in outreach and learning.

  5. Antisecretory and antimotility activity of Aconitum heterophyllum and its significance in treatment of diarrhea

    PubMed Central

    Prasad, Satyendra K.; Jain, Divya; Patel, Dinesh K.; Sahu, Alakh N.; Hemalatha, Siva

    2014-01-01

    Aim: The roots of the plant Aconitum heterophyllum (EAH) are traditionally used for curing hysteria, throat infection, dyspepsia, abdominal pain, diabetes, and diarrhea. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to determine the mechanism involved in the anti-diarrheal activity of roots of A. heterophyllum. Materials and Methods: Ant-diarrheal activity of ethanol extract at 50, 100, and 200 mg/kg p.o. was evaluated using fecal excretion and castor oil-induced diarrhea models, while optimized dose, that is, 100 mg/kg p.o. was further subjected to small intestinal transit, intestinal fluids accumulation, PGE2-induced enteropooling and gastric emptying test. To elucidate the probable mechanism, various biochemical parameters and Na+, K+ concentration in intestinal fluids were also determined. Further, antibacterial activity of extract along with its standardization using aconitine as a marker with the help of HPLC was carried out. Results: The results depicted a significant (P < 0.05) reduction in normal fecal output at 100 and 200 mg/kg p.o. of extract after 5th and 7th h of treatment. Castor oil-induced diarrhea model demonstrated a ceiling effect at 100 mg/kg p.o. with a protection of 60.185% from diarrhea. EAH at 100 mg/kg p.o. also showed significant activity in small intestinal transit, fluid accumulation, and PGE2-induced enteropooling models, which also restored the altered biochemical parameters and prevented Na+ and K+ loss. The extract with 0.0833% w/w of aconitine depicted a potential antibacterial activity of extract against microbes implicated in diarrhea. Conclusion: The study concluded antisecretory and antimotility effect of A. heterophyllum, which mediates through nitric oxide path way. PMID:24550590

  6. Enhanced resistance against Listeria monocytogenes at an early phase of primary infection in pregnant mice: activation of macrophages during pregnancy.

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Y; Mitsuyama, M; Sano, M; Nakano, H; Nomoto, K

    1986-01-01

    We investigated the pregnancy-induced changes in macrophage activity which are important in the expression of host defense against infections. Several macrophage functions were examined by using Listeria monocytogenes. In pregnant mice, prolonged survival and enhanced in vivo elimination of bacteria were observed in the early phase of primary infection. Functions of peritoneal macrophages, including in vitro phagocytosis intracellular killing, glucose consumption, generation of superoxide anion, and intracellular beta-glucuronidase activity were shown to be enhanced in pregnant mice. These findings indicate that pregnancy enhances macrophage functions qualitatively. Possible mechanisms for this enhancement and the significance of macrophage activation for pregnant hosts are discussed. PMID:3011673

  7. Augmented reality to enhance an active telepresence system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wheeler, Alison; Pretlove, John R. G.; Parker, Graham A.

    1996-12-01

    Tasks carried out remotely via a telerobotic system are typically complex, occur in hazardous environments and require fine control of the robot's movements. Telepresence systems provide the teleoperator with a feeling of being physically present at the remote site. Stereoscopic video has been successfully applied to telepresence vision systems to increase the operator's perception of depth in the remote scene and this sense of presence can be further enhanced using computer generated stereo graphics to augment the visual information presented to the operator. The Mechatronic Systems and Robotics Research Group have over seven years developed a number of high performance active stereo vision systems culminating in the latest, a four degree-of-freedom stereohead. This carries two miniature color cameras and is controlled in real time by the motion of the operator's head, who views the stereoscopic video images on an immersive head mounted display or stereo monitor. The stereohead is mounted on a mobile robot, the movement of which is controlled by a joystick interface. This paper describes the active telepresence system and the development of a prototype augmented reality (AR) application to enhance the operator's sense of presence at the remote site. The initial enhancements are a virtual map and compass to aid navigation in degraded visual conditions and a virtual cursor that provides a means for the operator to interact with the remote environment. The results of preliminary experiments using the initial enhancements are presented.

  8. ENHANCED BIODEGRADATION OF IOPROMIDE AND TRIMETHOPRIM IN NITRIFYING ACTIVATED SLUDGE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Iopromide and trimethoprim are frequently detected pharmaceuticals in effluents of wastewater treatment plants and in surface waters due to their persistence and high usage. Laboratory scale experiments showed that a significantly higher removal rate in nutrifying activated sludg...

  9. Active Hemovigilance Significantly Improves Reporting of Acute Non-infectious Adverse Reactions to Blood Transfusion.

    PubMed

    Agnihotri, Naveen; Agnihotri, Ajju

    2016-09-01

    One of the key purposes of a hemovigilance program is to improve reporting of transfusion related adverse events and subsequent data-driven improvement in blood transfusion (BT) practices. We conducted a study over 3 years to assess the impact of healthcare worker training and an active feedback programme on reporting of adverse reactions to BTs. All hospitalized patients who required a BT were included in the study. Healthcare workers involved in BT to patients were sensitized and trained in adverse reaction reporting by conducting training sessions and meetings. All the transfused patients were 'actively' monitored for any acute adverse reaction by using a uniquely coded blood issue form. A total of 18,914 blood components transfused to 5785 different patients resulted in 61 adverse reaction episodes. This incidence of 0.32 % in our study was found to be significantly higher (p < 0.005) than that reported from the same region in the past. Red blood cell units were the most frequently transfused component and thus most commonly involved in an adverse reaction (42.6 %), however apheresis platelets had the highest chance of reaction per unit transfused (0.66 %). There was no mortality associated with the BT during the study period. An active surveillance program significantly improves reporting and management of adverse reactions to BTs. PMID:27429527

  10. The temporal structures and functional significance of scale-free brain activity.

    PubMed

    He, Biyu J; Zempel, John M; Snyder, Abraham Z; Raichle, Marcus E

    2010-05-13

    Scale-free dynamics, with a power spectrum following P proportional to f(-beta), are an intrinsic feature of many complex processes in nature. In neural systems, scale-free activity is often neglected in electrophysiological research. Here, we investigate scale-free dynamics in human brain and show that it contains extensive nested frequencies, with the phase of lower frequencies modulating the amplitude of higher frequencies in an upward progression across the frequency spectrum. The functional significance of scale-free brain activity is indicated by task performance modulation and regional variation, with beta being larger in default network and visual cortex and smaller in hippocampus and cerebellum. The precise patterns of nested frequencies in the brain differ from other scale-free dynamics in nature, such as earth seismic waves and stock market fluctuations, suggesting system-specific generative mechanisms. Our findings reveal robust temporal structures and behavioral significance of scale-free brain activity and should motivate future study on its physiological mechanisms and cognitive implications. PMID:20471349

  11. The temporal structures and functional significance of scale-free brain activity.

    PubMed

    He, Biyu J; Zempel, John M; Snyder, Abraham Z; Raichle, Marcus E

    2010-05-13

    Scale-free dynamics, with a power spectrum following P proportional to f(-beta), are an intrinsic feature of many complex processes in nature. In neural systems, scale-free activity is often neglected in electrophysiological research. Here, we investigate scale-free dynamics in human brain and show that it contains extensive nested frequencies, with the phase of lower frequencies modulating the amplitude of higher frequencies in an upward progression across the frequency spectrum. The functional significance of scale-free brain activity is indicated by task performance modulation and regional variation, with beta being larger in default network and visual cortex and smaller in hippocampus and cerebellum. The precise patterns of nested frequencies in the brain differ from other scale-free dynamics in nature, such as earth seismic waves and stock market fluctuations, suggesting system-specific generative mechanisms. Our findings reveal robust temporal structures and behavioral significance of scale-free brain activity and should motivate future study on its physiological mechanisms and cognitive implications.

  12. The temporal structures and functional significance of scale-free brain activity

    PubMed Central

    He, Biyu J.; Zempel, John M.; Snyder, Abraham Z.; Raichle, Marcus E.

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY Scale-free dynamics, with a power spectrum following P ∝ f-β, are an intrinsic feature of many complex processes in nature. In neural systems, scale-free activity is often neglected in electrophysiological research. Here, we investigate scale-free dynamics in human brain and show that it contains extensive nested frequencies, with the phase of lower frequencies modulating the amplitude of higher frequencies in an upward progression across the frequency spectrum. The functional significance of scale-free brain activity is indicated by task performance modulation and regional variation, with β being larger in default network and visual cortex and smaller in hippocampus and cerebellum. The precise patterns of nested frequencies in the brain differ from other scale-free dynamics in nature, such as earth seismic waves and stock market fluctuations, suggesting system-specific generative mechanisms. Our findings reveal robust temporal structures and behavioral significance of scale-free brain activity and should motivate future study on its physiological mechanisms and cognitive implications. PMID:20471349

  13. Contrast-enhanced ultrasonography for the determination of Crohn’s disease activity – preliminary experience

    PubMed Central

    Białecki, Marcin; Białecka, Agnieszka; Laskowska, Katarzyna; Kłopocka, Maria; Liebert, Ariel; Lemanowicz, Adam; Serafin, Zbigniew

    2014-01-01

    Summary Background Contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) is a recent non-invasive modality, which may partially replace currently used techniques (endoscopy, CT enterography and MR enterography) in the diagnostics and assessment of Crohn’s disease (CD). The aim of the study was to analyze early experience in the use of CEUS for the measurement of activity and staging of CD. Material/Methods Eleven patients previously diagnosed with CD were included in the study. They underwent contrast-enhanced ultrasonography (SonoVue, Bracco), low-dose CT enterography (LDCTE), assessment of laboratory markers of inflammation and clinical CD activity index (CDAI). Contrast enhancement was evaluated using a semi-quantitative method and a quantitative method that included measurement of peak enhancement (PE), enhancement curve rise time (RT) and wash-in-rate (WiR). Results Ileal wall thickening was observed in all patients. Semi-quantitative method was used to observe CD activity in CEUS in 10 cases that perfectly matched LDCTE findings. There was a moderate positive correlation between PE and CDAI (r=0.65, p<0.001). There was no significant relationship between perfusion parameters and laboratory markers of inflammation. Conclusions CEUS is a promising modality for non-invasive assessment of pathologic ileal vascularization in the course of Crohn’s disease. Intensity of enhancement in CEUS reflects activity of the disease detected in LDCTE and correlates with CDAI. PMID:24723988

  14. Enhanced sympathetic activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex in rats with heart failure induced by adriamycin.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Shujuan; Zhang, Feng; Sun, Haijian; Zhou, Yebo; Han, Ying

    2012-11-01

    Our previous studies have shown that the cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex is enhanced in rats with chronic heart failure (CHF) induced by coronary artery ligation and contributes to the over-excitation of sympathetic activity. We sought to determine whether sympathetic activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex were enhanced in adriamycin-induced CHF and whether angiotensin II (Ang II) in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) was involved in enhancing sympathetic activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex. Heart failure was induced by intraperitoneal injection of adriamycin for six times during 2 weeks (15 mg/kg). Six weeks after the first injection, the rats underwent anesthesia with urethane and α-chloralose. After vagotomy and baroreceptor denervation, cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex was evaluated by renal sympathetic nerve activity and mean arterial pressure (MAP) response to epicardial application of capsaicin (1.0 nmol). The response of MAP to ganglionic blockade with hexamethonium in conscious rats was performed to evaluate sympathetic activity. The renal sympathetic nerve activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex were enhanced in adriamycin rats and the maximum depressor response of MAP induced by hexamethonium was significantly greater in adriamycin rats than that in control rats. Bilateral PVN microinjection of angiotensin II (Ang II) caused larger responses of the cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex, baseline renal sympathetic nerve activity and MAP in adriamycin rats than control rats. These results indicated that both sympathetic activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex were enhanced and Ang II in the PVN was involved in the enhanced sympathetic activity and cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex in rats with adriamycin-induced heart failure. PMID:23554781

  15. The Crowded Sea: Incorporating Multiple Marine Activities in Conservation Plans Can Significantly Alter Spatial Priorities

    PubMed Central

    Mazor, Tessa; Possingham, Hugh P.; Edelist, Dori; Brokovich, Eran; Kark, Salit

    2014-01-01

    Successful implementation of marine conservation plans is largely inhibited by inadequate consideration of the broader social and economic context within which conservation operates. Marine waters and their biodiversity are shared by a host of stakeholders, such as commercial fishers, recreational users and offshore developers. Hence, to improve implementation success of conservation plans, we must incorporate other marine activities while explicitly examining trade-offs that may be required. In this study, we test how the inclusion of multiple marine activities can shape conservation plans. We used the entire Mediterranean territorial waters of Israel as a case study to compare four planning scenarios with increasing levels of complexity, where additional zones, threats and activities were added (e.g., commercial fisheries, hydrocarbon exploration interests, aquaculture, and shipping lanes). We applied the marine zoning decision support tool Marxan to each planning scenario and tested a) the ability of each scenario to reach biodiversity targets, b) the change in opportunity cost and c) the alteration of spatial conservation priorities. We found that by including increasing numbers of marine activities and zones in the planning process, greater compromises are required to reach conservation objectives. Complex plans with more activities incurred greater opportunity cost and did not reach biodiversity targets as easily as simplified plans with less marine activities. We discovered that including hydrocarbon data in the planning process significantly alters spatial priorities. For the territorial waters of Israel we found that in order to protect at least 10% of the range of 166 marine biodiversity features there would be a loss of ∼15% of annual commercial fishery revenue and ∼5% of prospective hydrocarbon revenue. This case study follows an illustrated framework for adopting a transparent systematic process to balance biodiversity goals and economic

  16. Presynaptic Spontaneous Activity Enhances the Accuracy of Latency Coding.

    PubMed

    Levakova, Marie; Tamborrino, Massimiliano; Kostal, Lubomir; Lansky, Petr

    2016-10-01

    The time to the first spike after stimulus onset typically varies with the stimulation intensity. Experimental evidence suggests that neural systems use such response latency to encode information about the stimulus. We investigate the decoding accuracy of the latency code in relation to the level of noise in the form of presynaptic spontaneous activity. Paradoxically, the optimal performance is achieved at a nonzero level of noise and suprathreshold stimulus intensities. We argue that this phenomenon results from the influence of the spontaneous activity on the stabilization of the membrane potential in the absence of stimulation. The reported decoding accuracy improvement represents a novel manifestation of the noise-aided signal enhancement. PMID:27557098

  17. Surfaces of Fluorinated Pyridinium Block Copolymers with Enhanced Antibacterial Activity

    SciTech Connect

    Krishnan,S.; Ward, R.; Hexemer, A.; Sohn, K.; Lee, K.; Angert, E.; Fischer, D.; Kramer, E.; Ober, C.

    2006-01-01

    Polystyrene-b-poly(4-vinylpyridine) copolymers were quaternized with 1-bromohexane and 6-perfluorooctyl-1-bromohexane. Surfaces prepared from these polymers were characterized by contact angle measurements, near-edge X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The fluorinated pyridinium surfaces showed enhanced antibacterial activity compared to their nonfluorinated counterparts. Even a polymer with a relatively low molecular weight pyridinium block showed high antimicrobial activity. The bactericidal effect was found to be related to the molecular composition and organization in the top 2-3 nm of the surface and increased with increasing hydrophilicity and pyridinium concentration of the surface.

  18. Presynaptic Spontaneous Activity Enhances the Accuracy of Latency Coding.

    PubMed

    Levakova, Marie; Tamborrino, Massimiliano; Kostal, Lubomir; Lansky, Petr

    2016-10-01

    The time to the first spike after stimulus onset typically varies with the stimulation intensity. Experimental evidence suggests that neural systems use such response latency to encode information about the stimulus. We investigate the decoding accuracy of the latency code in relation to the level of noise in the form of presynaptic spontaneous activity. Paradoxically, the optimal performance is achieved at a nonzero level of noise and suprathreshold stimulus intensities. We argue that this phenomenon results from the influence of the spontaneous activity on the stabilization of the membrane potential in the absence of stimulation. The reported decoding accuracy improvement represents a novel manifestation of the noise-aided signal enhancement.

  19. Functional significance of Glu-77 and Tyr-137 within the active site of isoaspartyl dipeptidase.

    PubMed

    Martí-Arbona, Ricardo; Thoden, James B; Holden, Hazel M; Raushel, Frank M

    2005-12-01

    Isoaspartyl dipeptidase (IAD) is a binuclear metalloenzyme and a member of the amidohydrolase superfamily. This enzyme catalyzes the hydrolytic cleavage of beta-aspartyl dipeptides. The pH-rate profiles for the hydrolysis of beta-Asp-Leu indicates that catalysis is dependent on the ionization of two groups; one that ionizes at a pH approximately 6 and the other approximately 9. The group that must be ionized for catalysis is directly dependent on the identity of the metal ion bound to the active site. This result is consistent with the ionization of the hydroxide that bridges the two divalent cations. In addition to the residues that interact directly with the divalent cations there are two other residues that are highly conserved and found within the active site: Glu-77 and Tyr-137. Mutation of Tyr-137 to phenylalanine reduced the rate of catalysis by three orders of magnitude. The three dimensional X-ray structure of the Y137F mutant did not show any significant conformation changes relative to the three dimensional structure of the wild-type enzyme. The positioning of the side-chain phenolic group of Tyr-137 in the active site of IAD is consistent with the stabilization of the tetrahedral adduct concomitant with nucleophilic attack by the hydroxide that bridges the two divalent cations. Mutation of Glu-77 resulted in the reduction of catalytic activity by five orders of magnitude. The three dimensional structure of the E77Q mutant did not show any significant conformational changes in the mutant relative to the three dimensional structure of the wild-type enzyme. The positioning of the side-chain carboxylate of Glu-77 is consistent with the formation of an ion pair interaction with the free alpha-amino group of the substrate.

  20. Significant correlation between refractive index and activity of mitochondria: single mitochondrion study.

    PubMed

    Haseda, Keisuke; Kanematsu, Keita; Noguchi, Keiichi; Saito, Hiromu; Umeda, Norihiro; Ohta, Yoshihiro

    2015-03-01

    Measurements of refractive indices (RIs) of intracellular components can provide useful information on the structure and function of cells. The present study reports, for the first time, determination of the RI of an isolated mitochondrion in isotonic solution using retardation-modulated differential interference contrast microscopy. The value was 1.41 ± 0.01, indicating that mitochondria are densely packed with molecules having high RIs. Further, the RIs of each mitochondrion were significantly correlated with the mitochondrial membrane potential, an index of mitochondrial activity. These results will provide useful information on the structures and functions of cells based on the intracellular distribution of RIs.

  1. Significant correlation between refractive index and activity of mitochondria: single mitochondrion study

    PubMed Central

    Haseda, Keisuke; Kanematsu, Keita; Noguchi, Keiichi; Saito, Hiromu; Umeda, Norihiro; Ohta, Yoshihiro

    2015-01-01

    Measurements of refractive indices (RIs) of intracellular components can provide useful information on the structure and function of cells. The present study reports, for the first time, determination of the RI of an isolated mitochondrion in isotonic solution using retardation-modulated differential interference contrast microscopy. The value was 1.41 ± 0.01, indicating that mitochondria are densely packed with molecules having high RIs. Further, the RIs of each mitochondrion were significantly correlated with the mitochondrial membrane potential, an index of mitochondrial activity. These results will provide useful information on the structures and functions of cells based on the intracellular distribution of RIs. PMID:25798310

  2. Neural activity associated with enhanced facial attractiveness by cosmetics use.

    PubMed

    Ueno, Aya; Ito, Ayahito; Kawasaki, Iori; Kawachi, Yousuke; Yoshida, Kazuki; Murakami, Yui; Sakai, Shinya; Iijima, Toshio; Matsue, Yoshihiko; Fujii, Toshikatsu

    2014-04-30

    Previous psychological studies have shown that make-up enhances facial attractiveness. Although neuroimaging evidence indicates that the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) shows greater activity for faces of attractive people than for those of unattractive people, there is no direct evidence that the OFC also shows greater activity for the face of an individual wearing make-up than for the same face without make-up. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we investigated neural activity while subjects viewed 144 photographs of the same faces with and without make-up (48 with make-up, 48 without make-up, and 48 scrambled photographs) and assigned these faces an attractiveness rating. The behavioral data showed that the faces with make-up were rated as more attractive than those without make-up. The imaging data revealed that the left OFC and the right hippocampus showed greater activity for faces with make-up than for those without make-up. Furthermore, the activities of the right anterior cingulate cortex, left hippocampus, and left OFC increased with increasing facial attractiveness resulting from cosmetics use. These results provide direct evidence of the neural underpinnings of cosmetically enhanced facial attractiveness.

  3. Enhancing the Effectiveness of Significant Event Analysis: Exploring Personal Impact and Applying Systems Thinking in Primary Care

    PubMed Central

    McNaughton, Elaine; Bruce, David; Holly, Deirdre; Forrest, Eleanor; Macleod, Marion; Kennedy, Susan; Power, Ailsa; Toppin, Denis; Black, Irene; Pooley, Janet; Taylor, Audrey; Swanson, Vivien; Kelly, Moya; Ferguson, Julie; Stirling, Suzanne; Wakeling, Judy; Inglis, Angela; McKay, John; Sargeant, Joan

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Significant event analysis (SEA) is well established in many primary care settings but can be poorly implemented. Reasons include the emotional impact on clinicians and limited knowledge of systems thinking in establishing why events happen and formulating improvements. To enhance SEA effectiveness, we developed and tested “guiding tools” based on human factors principles. Methods: Mixed-methods development of guiding tools (Personal Booklet—to help with emotional demands and apply a human factors analysis at the individual level; Desk Pad—to guide a team-based systems analysis; and a written Report Format) by a multiprofessional “expert” group and testing with Scottish primary care practitioners who submitted completed enhanced SEA reports. Evaluation data were collected through questionnaire, telephone interviews, and thematic analysis of SEA reports. Results: Overall, 149/240 care practitioners tested the guiding tools and submitted completed SEA reports (62.1%). Reported understanding of how to undertake SEA improved postintervention (P < .001), while most agreed that the Personal Booklet was practical (88/123, 71.5%) and relevant to dealing with related emotions (93/123, 75.6%). The Desk Pad tool helped focus the SEA on systems issues (85/123, 69.1%), while most found the Report Format clear (94/123, 76.4%) and would recommend it (88/123, 71.5%). Most SEA reports adopted a systems approach to analyses (125/149, 83.9%), care improvement (74/149, 49.7), or planned actions (42/149, 28.2%). Discussion: Applying human factors principles to SEA potentially enables care teams to gain a systems-based understanding of why things go wrong, which may help with related emotional demands and with more effective learning and improvement. PMID:27583996

  4. Anticancer and enhanced antimicrobial activity of biosynthesizd silver nanoparticles against clinical pathogens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rajeshkumar, Shanmugam; Malarkodi, Chelladurai; Vanaja, Mahendran; Annadurai, Gurusamy

    2016-07-01

    The present investigation shows the biosynthesis of eco-friendly silver nanoparticles using culture supernatant of Enterococcus sp. and study the effect of enhanced antimicrobial activity, anticancer activity against pathogenic bacteria, fungi and cancer cell lines. Silver nanoparticles was synthesized by adding 1 mM silver nitrate into the 100 ml of 24 h freshly prepared culture supernatant of Enterococcus sp. and were characterized by UV-vis spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction (XRD), Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM), Selected Area Diffraction X-Ray (SAED), Energy Dispersive X Ray (EDX) and Fourier Transform Infra red Spectroscopy (FT-IR). The synthesized silver nanoparticles were impregnated with commercial antibiotics for evaluation of enhanced antimicrobial activity. Further these synthesized silver nanoparticles were assessed for its anticancer activity against cancer cell lines. In this study crystalline structured nanoparticles with spherical in the size ranges from 10 to 80 nm and it shows excellent enhanced antimicrobial activity than the commercial antibiotics. The in vitro assay of silver nanoparticles on anticancer have great potential to inhibit the cell viability. Amide linkages and carboxylate groups of proteins from Enterococcus sp. may bind with silver ions and convert into nanoparticles. The activities of commercial antibiotics were enhanced by coating silver nanoparticles shows significant improved antimicrobial activity. Silver nanoparticles have the great potential to inhibit the cell viability of liver cancer cells lines (HepG2) and lung cancer cell lines (A549).

  5. Aspects of igneous activity significant to a repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    Krier, D. J.; Perry, F. V.

    2004-01-01

    Location, timing, volume, and eruptive style of post-Miocene volcanoes have defined the volcanic hazard significant to a proposed high-level radioactive waste (HLW) and spent nuclear fuel (SNF) repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, as a low-probability, high-consequence event. Examination of eruptive centers in the region that may be analogueues to possible future volcanic activity at Yucca Mountain have aided in defining and evaluating the consequence scenarios for intrusion into and eruption above a repository. The probability of a future event intersecting a repository at Yucca Mountain has a mean value of 1.7 x 10{sup -8} per year. This probability comes from the Probabilistic Volcanic Hazard Assessment (PVHA) completed in 1996 and updated to reflect change in repository layout. Since that time, magnetic anomalies representing potential buried volcanic centers have been identified fiom magnetic surveys; however these potential buried centers only slightly increase the probability of an event intersecting the repository. The proposed repository will be located in its central portion of Yucca Mountain at approximately 300m depth. The process for assessing performance of a repository at Yucca Mountain has identified two scenarios for igneous activity that, although having a very low probability of occurrence, could have a significant consequence should an igneous event occur. Either a dike swarm intersecting repository drifts containing waste packages, or a volcanic eruption through the repository could result in release of radioactive material to the accessible environment. Ongoing investigations are assessing the mechanisms and significance of the consequence scenarios. Lathrop Wells Cone ({approx}80,000 yrs), a key analogue for estimating potential future volcanic activity, is the youngest surface expression of apparent waning basaltic volcanism in the region. Cone internal structure, lavas, and ash-fall tephra have been examined to estimate eruptive volume

  6. Force enhancement during and following muscle stretch of maximal voluntarily activated human quadriceps femoris.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Daniel; Seiberl, Wolfgang; Schwirtz, Ansgar

    2007-08-01

    Force enhancement during and following muscle stretch has been observed for electrically and voluntarily activated human muscle. However, especially for voluntary contractions, the latter observation has only been made for adductor pollicis and the ankle joint muscles, but not for large muscles like quadriceps femoris. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of active muscle stretch on force production for maximal voluntary contractions of in vivo human quadriceps femoris (n = 15). Peak torques during and torques at the end of stretch, torques following stretch, and passive torques following muscle deactivation were compared to the isometric torques at corresponding muscle length. In addition, muscle activation of rectus femoris, vastus medialis and vastus lateralis was obtained using surface EMG. Stretches with different amplitudes (15, 25 and 35 degrees at a velocity of 60 degrees s(-1)) were performed on the plateau region and the descending limb of the force-length relation in a random order. Data analysis showed four main results: (1) peak torques did not occur at the end of the stretch, but torques at the end of the stretch exceeded the corresponding isometric torque; (2) there was no significant force enhancement following muscle stretch, but a small significant passive force enhancement persisted for all stretch conditions; (3) forces during and following stretch were independent of stretch amplitude; (4) muscle activation during and following muscle stretch was significantly reduced. In conclusion, although our results showed passive force enhancement, we could not provide direct evidence that there is active force enhancement in voluntarily activated human quadriceps femoris.

  7. Shed syndecan-2 enhances tumorigenic activities of colon cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Sojoong; Choi, Youngsil; Jun, Eunsung; Kim, In-San; Kim, Seong-Eun; Jung, Sung-Ae; Oh, Eok-Soo

    2015-01-01

    Because earlier studies showed the cell surface heparan sulfate proteoglycan, syndecan-2, sheds from colon cancer cells in culture, the functional roles of shed syndecan-2 were assessed. A non-cleavable mutant of syndecan-2 in which the Asn148-Leu149 residues were replaced with Asn148-Ile149, had decreased shedding, less cancer-associated activities of syndecan-2 in vitro, and less syndecan-2-mediated metastasis of mouse melanoma cells in vivo, suggesting the importance of shedding on syndecan-2-mediated pro-tumorigenic functions. Indeed, shed syndecan-2 from cancer-conditioned media and recombinant shed syndecan-2 enhanced cancer-associated activities, and depletion of shed syndecan-2 abolished these effects. Similarly, shed syndecan-2 was detected from sera of patients from advanced carcinoma (625.9 ng/ml) and promoted cancer-associated activities. Furthermore, a series of syndecan-2 deletion mutants showed that the tumorigenic activity of shed syndecan-2 resided in the C-terminus of the extracellular domain and a shed syndecan-2 synthetic peptide (16 residues) was sufficient to establish subcutaneous primary growth of HT29 colon cancer cells, pulmonary metastases (B16F10 cells), and primary intrasplenic tumor growth and liver metastases (4T1 cells). Taken together, these results demonstrate that shed syndecan-2 directly enhances colon cancer progression and may be a promising therapeutic target for controlling colon cancer development. PMID:25686828

  8. Enhanced antibacterial activities of leonuri herba extracts containing silver nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Im, A-Rang; Han, Lina; Kim, E Ray; Kim, Jinwoong; Kim, Yeong Shik; Park, Youmie

    2012-08-01

    We report an efficient and powerful green process to enhance the antibacterial activities of the Leonuri herba extract. Plant sources, especially leaves and herbs, are precious for the generation of gold and silver nanoparticles. Various kinds of polyphenols and hydroxyl groups are capable of processing a reduction reaction to generate metals from its corresponding salts. We have prepared gold and silver nanoparticles with 70% ethanol and water extracts. No other toxic chemicals were utilized and the extracts played dual roles as reducing and stabilizing agents. For the generation of nanoparticles, both oven incubation and autoclaving methods were applied and the reaction conditions were optimized. Surface plasmon resonance band indicated that the formation of nanoparticles was successful. Images of high-resolution transmission electron microscopy revealed mostly spherical nanoparticles ranging from 9.9 to 13.0 nm in size. A water extract containing silver nanoparticles exhibited remarkable (approximately 127-fold) enhancement in antibacterial activities against Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli and Enterobacter cloacae when compared with the water extract alone. In addition, antibacterial activity towards Gram-negative bacteria was greater than that against Gram-positive bacteria. The process reported here has the potential to be a new approach to improve the antibacterial activities of plant extracts.

  9. RSUME Enhances Glucocorticoid Receptor SUMOylation and Transcriptional Activity

    PubMed Central

    Druker, Jimena; Liberman, Ana C.; Antunica-Noguerol, María; Gerez, Juan; Paez-Pereda, Marcelo; Rein, Theo; Iñiguez-Lluhí, Jorge A.; Holsboer, Florian

    2013-01-01

    Glucocorticoid receptor (GR) activity is modulated by posttranslational modifications, including phosphorylation, ubiquitination, and SUMOylation. The GR has three SUMOylation sites: lysine 297 (K297) and K313 in the N-terminal domain (NTD) and K721 within the ligand-binding domain. SUMOylation of the NTD sites mediates the negative effect of the synergy control motifs of GR on promoters with closely spaced GR binding sites. There is scarce evidence on the role of SUMO conjugation to K721 and its impact on GR transcriptional activity. We have previously shown that RSUME (RWD-containing SUMOylation enhancer) increases protein SUMOylation. We now demonstrate that RSUME interacts with the GR and increases its SUMOylation. RSUME regulates GR transcriptional activity and the expression of its endogenous target genes, FKBP51 and S100P. RSUME uncovers a positive role for the third SUMOylation site, K721, on GR-mediated transcription, demonstrating that GR SUMOylation acts positively in the presence of a SUMOylation enhancer. Both mutation of K721 and small interfering RNA-mediated RSUME knockdown diminish GRIP1 coactivator activity. RSUME, whose expression is induced under stress conditions, is a key factor in heat shock-induced GR SUMOylation. These results show that inhibitory and stimulatory SUMO sites are present in the GR and at higher SUMOylation levels the stimulatory one becomes dominant. PMID:23508108

  10. Natural killer cell activity in elderly men is enhanced by beta-carotene supplementation.

    PubMed

    Santos, M S; Meydani, S N; Leka, L; Wu, D; Fotouhi, N; Meydani, M; Hennekens, C H; Gaziano, J M

    1996-11-01

    Natural killer (NK) cell activity has been postulated to be an immunologic link between beta-carotene and cancer prevention. In a cross-sectional, placebo-controlled, double-blind study we examined the effect of 10-12 y of beta-carotene supplementation (50 mg on alternate days) on NK cell activity in 59 (38 middle-aged men, 51-64 y; 21 elderly men, 65-86 y) Boston area participants in the Physicians' Health Study. No significant difference was seen in NK cell activity due to beta-carotene supplementation in the middle-aged group. The elderly men had significantly lower NK cell activity than the middle-aged men; however, there was no age-associated difference in NK cell activity in men supplemented with beta-carotene. beta-carotene-supplemented elderly men had significantly greater NK cell activity than elderly men receiving placebo. The reason for this is unknown; however, it was not due to an increase in the percentage of NK cells, nor to an increase in interleukin 2 (IL-2) receptor expression, nor to IL-2 production. beta-carotene may be acting directly on one or more of the lytic stages of NK cell cytotoxicity, or on NK cell activity-enhancing cytokines other than IL-2, such as IL-12. Our results show that long-term beta-carotene supplementation enhances NK cell activity in elderly men, which may be beneficial for viral and tumoral surveillance.

  11. Activation of Big Grain1 significantly improves grain size by regulating auxin transport in rice.

    PubMed

    Liu, Linchuan; Tong, Hongning; Xiao, Yunhua; Che, Ronghui; Xu, Fan; Hu, Bin; Liang, Chengzhen; Chu, Jinfang; Li, Jiayang; Chu, Chengcai

    2015-09-01

    Grain size is one of the key factors determining grain yield. However, it remains largely unknown how grain size is regulated by developmental signals. Here, we report the identification and characterization of a dominant mutant big grain1 (Bg1-D) that shows an extra-large grain phenotype from our rice T-DNA insertion population. Overexpression of BG1 leads to significantly increased grain size, and the severe lines exhibit obviously perturbed gravitropism. In addition, the mutant has increased sensitivities to both auxin and N-1-naphthylphthalamic acid, an auxin transport inhibitor, whereas knockdown of BG1 results in decreased sensitivities and smaller grains. Moreover, BG1 is specifically induced by auxin treatment, preferentially expresses in the vascular tissue of culms and young panicles, and encodes a novel membrane-localized protein, strongly suggesting its role in regulating auxin transport. Consistent with this finding, the mutant has increased auxin basipetal transport and altered auxin distribution, whereas the knockdown plants have decreased auxin transport. Manipulation of BG1 in both rice and Arabidopsis can enhance plant biomass, seed weight, and yield. Taking these data together, we identify a novel positive regulator of auxin response and transport in a crop plant and demonstrate its role in regulating grain size, thus illuminating a new strategy to improve plant productivity. PMID:26283354

  12. Activation of Big Grain1 significantly improves grain size by regulating auxin transport in rice.

    PubMed

    Liu, Linchuan; Tong, Hongning; Xiao, Yunhua; Che, Ronghui; Xu, Fan; Hu, Bin; Liang, Chengzhen; Chu, Jinfang; Li, Jiayang; Chu, Chengcai

    2015-09-01

    Grain size is one of the key factors determining grain yield. However, it remains largely unknown how grain size is regulated by developmental signals. Here, we report the identification and characterization of a dominant mutant big grain1 (Bg1-D) that shows an extra-large grain phenotype from our rice T-DNA insertion population. Overexpression of BG1 leads to significantly increased grain size, and the severe lines exhibit obviously perturbed gravitropism. In addition, the mutant has increased sensitivities to both auxin and N-1-naphthylphthalamic acid, an auxin transport inhibitor, whereas knockdown of BG1 results in decreased sensitivities and smaller grains. Moreover, BG1 is specifically induced by auxin treatment, preferentially expresses in the vascular tissue of culms and young panicles, and encodes a novel membrane-localized protein, strongly suggesting its role in regulating auxin transport. Consistent with this finding, the mutant has increased auxin basipetal transport and altered auxin distribution, whereas the knockdown plants have decreased auxin transport. Manipulation of BG1 in both rice and Arabidopsis can enhance plant biomass, seed weight, and yield. Taking these data together, we identify a novel positive regulator of auxin response and transport in a crop plant and demonstrate its role in regulating grain size, thus illuminating a new strategy to improve plant productivity.

  13. Activation of Big Grain1 significantly improves grain size by regulating auxin transport in rice

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Linchuan; Tong, Hongning; Xiao, Yunhua; Che, Ronghui; Xu, Fan; Hu, Bin; Liang, Chengzhen; Chu, Jinfang; Li, Jiayang; Chu, Chengcai

    2015-01-01

    Grain size is one of the key factors determining grain yield. However, it remains largely unknown how grain size is regulated by developmental signals. Here, we report the identification and characterization of a dominant mutant big grain1 (Bg1-D) that shows an extra-large grain phenotype from our rice T-DNA insertion population. Overexpression of BG1 leads to significantly increased grain size, and the severe lines exhibit obviously perturbed gravitropism. In addition, the mutant has increased sensitivities to both auxin and N-1-naphthylphthalamic acid, an auxin transport inhibitor, whereas knockdown of BG1 results in decreased sensitivities and smaller grains. Moreover, BG1 is specifically induced by auxin treatment, preferentially expresses in the vascular tissue of culms and young panicles, and encodes a novel membrane-localized protein, strongly suggesting its role in regulating auxin transport. Consistent with this finding, the mutant has increased auxin basipetal transport and altered auxin distribution, whereas the knockdown plants have decreased auxin transport. Manipulation of BG1 in both rice and Arabidopsis can enhance plant biomass, seed weight, and yield. Taking these data together, we identify a novel positive regulator of auxin response and transport in a crop plant and demonstrate its role in regulating grain size, thus illuminating a new strategy to improve plant productivity. PMID:26283354

  14. Blocking IDO activity to enhance anti-tumor immunity.

    PubMed

    Munn, David H

    2012-01-01

    Tumors express potentially immunogenic antigens, yet the immune response to these antigens is typically profoundly suppressed. Patients with established tumors behave as if they were functionally tolerant to any antigens associated with the tumor. This tolerance reflects a process of active immune suppression elicited by the tumor, and represents a critical barrier to successful anti-tumor immunotherapy. Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) is a natural immunoregulatory mechanism contributes to immune suppression and tolerance in a variety of settings. In tumor-bearing hosts, animal models suggest that tumor-induced IDO helps create a tolerogenic milieu within the tumor and the associated tumor-draining lymph nodes. IDO directly suppresses the proliferation and differentiation of effector T cells, and markedly enhances the suppressor activity of regulatory T cells (Tregs). Together, these effects contribute to the inability of the immune system to respond effectively to tumor antigens. Treatment of tumor-bearing animals with IDO-inhibitor drugs enhances anti-tumor immune responses, and IDO-inhibitors are synergistic with a variety of chemotherapeutic drugs, anti-tumor vaccines and other immunotherapy. Strategies to pharmacologically inhibit IDO may thus enhance immune-mediated responses following conventional chemotherapy, and may be synergistic with other forms of immunotherapy.

  15. Subcortical evoked activity and motor enhancement in Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Anzak, Anam; Tan, Huiling; Pogosyan, Alek; Khan, Sadaquate; Javed, Shazia; Gill, Steven S; Ashkan, Keyoumars; Akram, Harith; Foltynie, Thomas; Limousin, Patricia; Zrinzo, Ludvic; Green, Alexander L; Aziz, Tipu; Brown, Peter

    2016-03-01

    Enhancements in motor performance have been demonstrated in response to intense stimuli both in healthy subjects and in the form of 'paradoxical kinesis' in patients with Parkinson's disease. Here we identify a mid-latency evoked potential in local field potential recordings from the region of the subthalamic nucleus, which scales in amplitude with both the intensity of the stimulus delivered and corresponding enhancements in biomechanical measures of maximal handgrips, independent of the dopaminergic state of our subjects with Parkinson's disease. Recordings of a similar evoked potential in the related pedunculopontine nucleus - a key component of the reticular activating system - provide support for this neural signature in the subthalmic nucleus being a novel correlate of ascending arousal, propagated from the reticular activating system to exert an 'energizing' influence on motor circuitry. Future manipulation of this system linking arousal and motor performance may provide a novel approach for the non-dopaminergic enhancement of motor performance in patients with hypokinetic disorders such as Parkinson's disease.

  16. Vortical ciliary flows actively enhance mass transport in reef corals.

    PubMed

    Shapiro, Orr H; Fernandez, Vicente I; Garren, Melissa; Guasto, Jeffrey S; Debaillon-Vesque, François P; Kramarsky-Winter, Esti; Vardi, Assaf; Stocker, Roman

    2014-09-16

    The exchange of nutrients and dissolved gasses between corals and their environment is a critical determinant of the growth of coral colonies and the productivity of coral reefs. To date, this exchange has been assumed to be limited by molecular diffusion through an unstirred boundary layer extending 1-2 mm from the coral surface, with corals relying solely on external flow to overcome this limitation. Here, we present direct microscopic evidence that, instead, corals can actively enhance mass transport through strong vortical flows driven by motile epidermal cilia covering their entire surface. Ciliary beating produces quasi-steady arrays of counterrotating vortices that vigorously stir a layer of water extending up to 2 mm from the coral surface. We show that, under low ambient flow velocities, these vortices, rather than molecular diffusion, control the exchange of nutrients and oxygen between the coral and its environment, enhancing mass transfer rates by up to 400%. This ability of corals to stir their boundary layer changes the way that we perceive the microenvironment of coral surfaces, revealing an active mechanism complementing the passive enhancement of transport by ambient flow. These findings extend our understanding of mass transport processes in reef corals and may shed new light on the evolutionary success of corals and coral reefs.

  17. Vortical ciliary flows actively enhance mass transport in reef corals

    PubMed Central

    Shapiro, Orr H.; Fernandez, Vicente I.; Garren, Melissa; Guasto, Jeffrey S.; Debaillon-Vesque, François P.; Kramarsky-Winter, Esti; Vardi, Assaf; Stocker, Roman

    2014-01-01

    The exchange of nutrients and dissolved gasses between corals and their environment is a critical determinant of the growth of coral colonies and the productivity of coral reefs. To date, this exchange has been assumed to be limited by molecular diffusion through an unstirred boundary layer extending 1–2 mm from the coral surface, with corals relying solely on external flow to overcome this limitation. Here, we present direct microscopic evidence that, instead, corals can actively enhance mass transport through strong vortical flows driven by motile epidermal cilia covering their entire surface. Ciliary beating produces quasi-steady arrays of counterrotating vortices that vigorously stir a layer of water extending up to 2 mm from the coral surface. We show that, under low ambient flow velocities, these vortices, rather than molecular diffusion, control the exchange of nutrients and oxygen between the coral and its environment, enhancing mass transfer rates by up to 400%. This ability of corals to stir their boundary layer changes the way that we perceive the microenvironment of coral surfaces, revealing an active mechanism complementing the passive enhancement of transport by ambient flow. These findings extend our understanding of mass transport processes in reef corals and may shed new light on the evolutionary success of corals and coral reefs. PMID:25192936

  18. Subcortical evoked activity and motor enhancement in Parkinson's disease

    PubMed Central

    Anzak, Anam; Tan, Huiling; Pogosyan, Alek; Khan, Sadaquate; Javed, Shazia; Gill, Steven S.; Ashkan, Keyoumars; Akram, Harith; Foltynie, Thomas; Limousin, Patricia; Zrinzo, Ludvic; Green, Alexander L.; Aziz, Tipu; Brown, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Enhancements in motor performance have been demonstrated in response to intense stimuli both in healthy subjects and in the form of ‘paradoxical kinesis’ in patients with Parkinson's disease. Here we identify a mid-latency evoked potential in local field potential recordings from the region of the subthalamic nucleus, which scales in amplitude with both the intensity of the stimulus delivered and corresponding enhancements in biomechanical measures of maximal handgrips, independent of the dopaminergic state of our subjects with Parkinson's disease. Recordings of a similar evoked potential in the related pedunculopontine nucleus – a key component of the reticular activating system – provide support for this neural signature in the subthalmic nucleus being a novel correlate of ascending arousal, propagated from the reticular activating system to exert an ‘energizing’ influence on motor circuitry. Future manipulation of this system linking arousal and motor performance may provide a novel approach for the non-dopaminergic enhancement of motor performance in patients with hypokinetic disorders such as Parkinson's disease. PMID:26687971

  19. ATP-enhanced peroxidase-like activity of gold nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Shah, Juhi; Purohit, Rahul; Singh, Ragini; Karakoti, Ajay Singh; Singh, Sanjay

    2015-10-15

    Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) are known to possess intrinsic biological peroxidase-like activity that has applications in development of numerous biosensors. The reactivity of the Au atoms at the surface of AuNPs is critical to the performance of such biosensors, yet little is known about the effect of biomolecules and ions on the peroxidase-like activity. In this work, the effect of ATP and other biologically relevant molecules and ions over peroxidase-like activity of AuNPs are described. Contrary to the expectation that nanoparticles exposed to biomolecules may lose the catalytic property, ATP and ADP addition enhanced the peroxidase-like activity of AuNPs. The catalytic activity was unaltered by the addition of free phosphate, sulphate and carbonate anions however, addition of ascorbic acid to the reaction mixture diminished the intrinsic peroxidase-like activity of AuNPs, even in the presence of ATP and ADP. In contrast to AuNPs, ATP did not synergize and improve the peroxidase activity of the natural peroxidase enzyme, horseradish peroxidase.

  20. Mushroom bodies enhance initial motor activity in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Serway, Christine N; Kaufman, Rebecca R; Strauss, Roland; de Belle, J Steven

    2009-01-01

    The central body (or central complex, CCX) and the mushroom bodies (MBs) are brain structures in most insect phyla that have been shown to influence aspects of locomotion. The CCX regulates motor coordination and enhances activity while MBs have, thus far, been shown to suppress motor activity levels measured over time intervals ranging from hours to weeks. In this report, we investigate MB involvement in motor behavior during the initial stages (15 minutes) of walking in Buridan's paradigm. We measured aspects of walking in flies that had MB lesions induced by mutations in six different genes and by chemical ablation. All tested flies were later examined histologically to assess MB neuroanatomy. Mutant strains with MB structural defects were generally less active in walking than wild-type flies. Most mutants in which MBs were also ablated with hydroxyurea (HU) showed additional activity decrements. Variation in measures of velocity and orientation to landmarks among wild-type and mutant flies was attributed to pleiotropy, rather than to MB lesions. We conclude that MBs upregulate activity during the initial stages of walking, but suppress activity thereafter. An MB influence on decision making has been shown in a wide range of complex behaviors. We suggest that MBs provide appropriate contextual information to motor output systems in the brain, indirectly fine tuning walking by modifying the quantity (i.e., activity) of behavior.

  1. "Fungal elicitors combined with a sucrose feed significantly enhance triterpene production of a Salvia fruticosa cell suspension".

    PubMed

    Kümmritz, Sibylle; Louis, Marilena; Haas, Christiane; Oehmichen, Franz; Gantz, Stephanie; Delenk, Hubertus; Steudler, Susanne; Bley, Thomas; Steingroewer, Juliane

    2016-08-01

    Oleanolic (OA) and ursolic acid (UA) are plant secondary metabolites with diverse pharmacological properties. To reach reasonable productivities with plant cell suspension cultures, elicitation is a widely used strategy. Within the presented work, the effects of different elicitors on growth and production of OA and UA in a Salvia fruticosa cell suspension culture were examined. Beside commonly used elicitors like jasmonic acid (JA) and yeast extract, the influence of medium filtrates of the endophytic fungi Aspergillus niger and Trichoderma virens was investigated. The best eliciting effects were achieved with JA and fungal medium filtrates. Both increased the triterpene content by approximately 70 %. Since JA showed significant growth inhibition, the volumetric triterpene yield did not increase. But, adding fungal filtrates increased the volumetric triterpene yield by approximately 70 % to 32.6 mgOA l(-1) and 65.9 mgUA l(-1) for T. virens compared to the control with 19.4 mgOA l(-1) and 33.3 mgUA l(-1). An elicitation strategy combining fungal medium filtrate of T. virens with sucrose feeding significantly enhanced cell dry weight concentration to 22.2 g l(-1) as well as triterpene content by approximately 140 %. In total, this led to an approximately 500 % increase of volumetric triterpene yield referring to the control with final values of 112.9 mgOA l(-1) and 210.4 mgUA l(-1). Despite the doubled cultivation duration, productivities of 6.7 mgOA l(-1) day(-1) and 12.4 mgUA l(-1) day(-1) were reached. These results demonstrate methods by which increased productivities of triterpenes can be achieved to attain yields competing with intact plants. PMID:26971493

  2. "Fungal elicitors combined with a sucrose feed significantly enhance triterpene production of a Salvia fruticosa cell suspension".

    PubMed

    Kümmritz, Sibylle; Louis, Marilena; Haas, Christiane; Oehmichen, Franz; Gantz, Stephanie; Delenk, Hubertus; Steudler, Susanne; Bley, Thomas; Steingroewer, Juliane

    2016-08-01

    Oleanolic (OA) and ursolic acid (UA) are plant secondary metabolites with diverse pharmacological properties. To reach reasonable productivities with plant cell suspension cultures, elicitation is a widely used strategy. Within the presented work, the effects of different elicitors on growth and production of OA and UA in a Salvia fruticosa cell suspension culture were examined. Beside commonly used elicitors like jasmonic acid (JA) and yeast extract, the influence of medium filtrates of the endophytic fungi Aspergillus niger and Trichoderma virens was investigated. The best eliciting effects were achieved with JA and fungal medium filtrates. Both increased the triterpene content by approximately 70 %. Since JA showed significant growth inhibition, the volumetric triterpene yield did not increase. But, adding fungal filtrates increased the volumetric triterpene yield by approximately 70 % to 32.6 mgOA l(-1) and 65.9 mgUA l(-1) for T. virens compared to the control with 19.4 mgOA l(-1) and 33.3 mgUA l(-1). An elicitation strategy combining fungal medium filtrate of T. virens with sucrose feeding significantly enhanced cell dry weight concentration to 22.2 g l(-1) as well as triterpene content by approximately 140 %. In total, this led to an approximately 500 % increase of volumetric triterpene yield referring to the control with final values of 112.9 mgOA l(-1) and 210.4 mgUA l(-1). Despite the doubled cultivation duration, productivities of 6.7 mgOA l(-1) day(-1) and 12.4 mgUA l(-1) day(-1) were reached. These results demonstrate methods by which increased productivities of triterpenes can be achieved to attain yields competing with intact plants.

  3. Significance of Late Gadolinium Enhancement at Right Ventricular Attachment to Ventricular Septum in Patients With Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Chan, Raymond H; Maron, Barry J; Olivotto, Iacopo; Assenza, Gabriele E; Haas, Tammy S; Lesser, John R; Gruner, Christiane; Crean, Andrew M; Rakowski, Harry; Rowin, Ethan; Udelson, James; Lombardi, Massimo; Tomberli, Benedetta; Spirito, Paolo; Formisano, Francesco; Marra, Martina P; Biagini, Elena; Autore, Camillo; Manning, Warren J; Appelbaum, Evan; Roberts, William C; Basso, Cristina; Maron, Martin S

    2015-08-01

    Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) with extensive late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) is a novel marker for increased risk for sudden death (SD) in patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HC). Small focal areas of LGE confined to the region of right ventricular (RV) insertion to ventricular septum (VS) have emerged as a frequent and highly visible CMR imaging pattern of uncertain significance. The aim of this study was to evaluate the prognostic significance of LGE confined to the RV insertion area in patients with HC. CMR was performed in 1,293 consecutive patients with HC from 7 HC centers, followed for 3.4 ± 1.7 years. Of 1,293 patients (47 ± 14 years), 134 (10%) had LGE present only in the anterior and/or inferior areas of the RV insertion to VS, occupying 3.7 ± 2.9% of left ventricular myocardium. Neither the presence nor extent of LGE in these isolated areas was a predictor of adverse HC-related risk, including SD (adjusted hazard ratio 0.82, 95% confidence interval 0.45 to 1.50, p = 0.53; adjusted hazard ratio 1.16/10% increase in LGE, 95% confidence interval 0.29 to 4.65, p = 0.83, respectively). Histopathology in 20 HC hearts show the insertion areas of RV attachment to be composed of a greatly expanded extracellular space characterized predominantly by interstitial-type fibrosis and interspersed disorganized myocyte patterns and architecture. In conclusion, LGE confined to the insertion areas of RV to VS was associated with low risk of adverse events (including SD). Gadolinium pooling in this region of the left ventricle does not reflect myocyte death and repair with replacement fibrosis or scarring.

  4. Biocatalytic properties of a recombinant Fusarium proliferatum lactonase with significantly enhanced production by optimal expression in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Chen, Bing; Fan, Li-Qiang; Xu, Jian-He; Zhao, Jian; Zhang, Xian; Ouyang, Li-Ming

    2010-10-01

    The levo-lactonase gene of Fusarium proliferatum ECU2002 (EC3.1.1.25) was cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli JM109 (DE3) for biocatalytic resolution of industrially important chiral lactones, including DL-pantoyl lactone which was a key precursor to calcium D-pantothenate. By increasing the biomass concentration and lowering the inducer (isopropyl-beta-D-thiogalactoside) concentration and induction temperature, the lactonase production was significantly enhanced up to 20 kU/L, which was 20 times higher than that of wild-type strain F. proliferatum ECU2002. The recombinant Fusarium lactonase was purified using immobilized metal affinity chromatography, and its SDS-PAGE revealed a molecular mass of 50 kDa for the recombinant protein, suggesting that the enzyme was a simplex protein. Furthermore, biocatalytic properties of the recombinant lactonase were investigated, including kinetic parameters, additive's effect, and substrate specificity. The results reported in this paper provide a feasible method to make the whole cells of E. coli JM109 (DE3) expressing lactonase gene to be a highly efficient and easy-to-make biocatalyst for asymmetric synthesis of chiral compounds. PMID:19876606

  5. Understanding interactions between manganese oxide and gold that lead to enhanced activity for electrocatalytic water oxidation.

    PubMed

    Gorlin, Yelena; Chung, Chia-Jung; Benck, Jesse D; Nordlund, Dennis; Seitz, Linsey; Weng, Tsu-Chien; Sokaras, Dimosthenis; Clemens, Bruce M; Jaramillo, Thomas F

    2014-04-01

    To develop active nonprecious metal-based electrocatalysts for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER), a limiting reaction in several emerging renewable energy technologies, a deeper understanding of the activity of the first row transition metal oxides is needed. Previous studies of these catalysts have reported conflicting results on the influence of noble metal supports on the OER activity of the transition metal oxides. Our study aims to clarify the interactions between a transition metal oxide catalyst and its metal support in turning over this reaction. To achieve this goal, we examine a catalytic system comprising nanoparticulate Au, a common electrocatalytic support, and nanoparticulate MnO(x), a promising OER catalyst. We conclusively demonstrate that adding Au to MnO(x) significantly enhances OER activity relative to MnO(x) in the absence of Au, producing an order of magnitude higher turnover frequency (TOF) than the TOF of the best pure MnO(x) catalysts reported to date. We also provide evidence that it is a local rather than bulk interaction between Au and MnO(x) that leads to the observed enhancement in the OER activity. Engineering improvements in nonprecious metal-based catalysts by the addition of Au or other noble metals could still represent a scalable catalyst as even trace amounts of Au are shown to lead a significant enhancement in the OER activity of MnO(x).

  6. Understanding Interactions between Manganese Oxide and Gold That Lead to Enhanced Activity for Electrocatalytic Water Oxidation

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    To develop active nonprecious metal-based electrocatalysts for the oxygen evolution reaction (OER), a limiting reaction in several emerging renewable energy technologies, a deeper understanding of the activity of the first row transition metal oxides is needed. Previous studies of these catalysts have reported conflicting results on the influence of noble metal supports on the OER activity of the transition metal oxides. Our study aims to clarify the interactions between a transition metal oxide catalyst and its metal support in turning over this reaction. To achieve this goal, we examine a catalytic system comprising nanoparticulate Au, a common electrocatalytic support, and nanoparticulate MnOx, a promising OER catalyst. We conclusively demonstrate that adding Au to MnOx significantly enhances OER activity relative to MnOx in the absence of Au, producing an order of magnitude higher turnover frequency (TOF) than the TOF of the best pure MnOx catalysts reported to date. We also provide evidence that it is a local rather than bulk interaction between Au and MnOx that leads to the observed enhancement in the OER activity. Engineering improvements in nonprecious metal-based catalysts by the addition of Au or other noble metals could still represent a scalable catalyst as even trace amounts of Au are shown to lead a significant enhancement in the OER activity of MnOx. PMID:24661269

  7. Functional significance of complex fluctuations in brain activity: from resting state to cognitive neuroscience

    PubMed Central

    Papo, David

    2014-01-01

    Behavioral studies have shown that human cognition is characterized by properties such as temporal scale invariance, heavy-tailed non-Gaussian distributions, and long-range correlations at long time scales, suggesting models of how (non observable) components of cognition interact. On the other hand, results from functional neuroimaging studies show that complex scaling and intermittency may be generic spatio-temporal properties of the brain at rest. Somehow surprisingly, though, hardly ever have the neural correlates of cognition been studied at time scales comparable to those at which cognition shows scaling properties. Here, we analyze the meanings of scaling properties and the significance of their task-related modulations for cognitive neuroscience. It is proposed that cognitive processes can be framed in terms of complex generic properties of brain activity at rest and, ultimately, of functional equations, limiting distributions, symmetries, and possibly universality classes characterizing them. PMID:24966818

  8. Nanosilver based anionic linear globular dendrimer with a special significant antiretroviral activity.

    PubMed

    Ardestani, Mehdi Shafiee; Fordoei, Alireza Salehi; Abdoli, Asghar; Ahangari Cohan, Reza; Bahramali, Golnaz; Sadat, Seyed Mehdi; Siadat, Seyed Davar; Moloudian, Hamid; Nassiri Koopaei, Nasser; Bolhasani, Azam; Rahimi, Pooneh; Hekmat, Soheila; Davari, Mehdi; Aghasadeghi, Mohammad Reza

    2015-05-01

    HIV is commonly caused to a very complicated disease which has not any recognized vaccine, so designing and development of novel antiretroviral agents with specific application of nanomedicine is a globally interested research subject worldwide. In the current study, a novel structure of silver complexes with anionic linear globular dendrimer was synthesized, characterized and then assessed against HIV replication pathway in vitro as well. The results showed a very good yield of synthesis (up to 70%) for the nano-complex as well as a very potent significant (P < 0.05) antiretroviral activity with non-severe toxic effects in comparison with the Nevirapine as standard drug in positive control group. According to the present data, silver anionic linear globular dendrimers complex may have a promising future to inhibit replication of HIV viruse in clinical practice.

  9. Nanosilver based anionic linear globular dendrimer with a special significant antiretroviral activity.

    PubMed

    Ardestani, Mehdi Shafiee; Fordoei, Alireza Salehi; Abdoli, Asghar; Ahangari Cohan, Reza; Bahramali, Golnaz; Sadat, Seyed Mehdi; Siadat, Seyed Davar; Moloudian, Hamid; Nassiri Koopaei, Nasser; Bolhasani, Azam; Rahimi, Pooneh; Hekmat, Soheila; Davari, Mehdi; Aghasadeghi, Mohammad Reza

    2015-05-01

    HIV is commonly caused to a very complicated disease which has not any recognized vaccine, so designing and development of novel antiretroviral agents with specific application of nanomedicine is a globally interested research subject worldwide. In the current study, a novel structure of silver complexes with anionic linear globular dendrimer was synthesized, characterized and then assessed against HIV replication pathway in vitro as well. The results showed a very good yield of synthesis (up to 70%) for the nano-complex as well as a very potent significant (P < 0.05) antiretroviral activity with non-severe toxic effects in comparison with the Nevirapine as standard drug in positive control group. According to the present data, silver anionic linear globular dendrimers complex may have a promising future to inhibit replication of HIV viruse in clinical practice. PMID:25893388

  10. Phosphorous transient enhanced diffusion suppression and activation enhancement with cluster carbon co-implantation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakashima, Yoshiki; Hamamoto, Nariaki; Nagayama, Tsutomu; Koga, Yuji; Umisedo, Sei; Kawamura, Yasunori; Hashimoto, Masahiro; Onoda, Hiroshi

    2012-11-01

    Carbon co-implantation is well known as an effective method for suppressing boron/phosphorous transient enhanced diffusion (TED). Germanium pre-amorphization implantation (PAI) is usually applied prior to carbon co-implantation for suppressing channeling tail of dopants. In this study, cluster carbon was applied instead of the combination of germanium PAI and monomer carbon co-implantation prior to phosphorous implantation. Dependence of phosphorous activation and TED on amorphous layer thickness, carbon dose, carbon distribution and substrate temperature have been investigated. Cluster carbon implantation enables thick amorphous layer formation and TED suppression at the same time and low temperature implantation enhances the ability of amorphous layer formation so that shallow junction and low Rs can be achieved without Ge implantation.

  11. Phosphorous transient enhanced diffusion suppression and activation enhancement with cluster carbon co-implantation

    SciTech Connect

    Nakashima, Yoshiki; Hamamoto, Nariaki; Nagayama, Tsutomu; Koga, Yuji; Umisedo, Sei; Kawamura, Yasunori; Hashimoto, Masahiro; Onoda, Hiroshi

    2012-11-06

    Carbon co-implantation is well known as an effective method for suppressing boron/phosphorous transient enhanced diffusion (TED). Germanium pre-amorphization implantation (PAI) is usually applied prior to carbon co-implantation for suppressing channeling tail of dopants. In this study, cluster carbon was applied instead of the combination of germanium PAI and monomer carbon co-implantation prior to phosphorous implantation. Dependence of phosphorous activation and TED on amorphous layer thickness, carbon dose, carbon distribution and substrate temperature have been investigated. Cluster carbon implantation enables thick amorphous layer formation and TED suppression at the same time and low temperature implantation enhances the ability of amorphous layer formation so that shallow junction and low Rs can be achieved without Ge implantation.

  12. Significant foreshock activities of M>7.5 earthquakes in the Kuril subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harada, T.; Yokoi, S.; Satake, K.

    2014-12-01

    In the Kuril subduction zone, some M>7.5 earthquakes are accompanied by significant foreshock activities, providing a good opportunity to understand the characteristics of foreshocks for large interplate events such as occur along the Japan Trench and Nankai Trough etc. Some preliminary results from our examination of the foreshock sequences are as follows. Relocated foreshocks tend to migrate with time toward the trench axis. Foreshock distributions of the interplate earthquakes do not overlap with the large coseismic slips (asperities) of the mainshocks. Foreshocks of the 2007 northern Kuril outer-rise event, however, were distributed on the entire rupture area. Foreshock sequences seem to be limited in the regions where the background seismicity rates are relatively high. The foreshock activities were found in the examination of the space-time pattern of M>7 events along the northern Japan to Kuril trench since 1913 (e.g. Harada, Satake, and Ishibashi, 2011:AGU, 2012:AOGS). The large earthquakes preceded by active foreshock sequences are: the 2006 (M8.3), 2007 (M8.1) offshore Simushir earthquakes, the 1963 (M8.5), 1991 (M7.6), 1995 (M7.9) offshore Urup events, the 1978 (M7.8) offshore Iturup events, the 1969 (M8.2) offshore Shikotan event. In contrast, M>7.5 interplate earthquakes offshore Hokkaido (1952 (M8.1), 1973 (M7.8), 2003 (M8.1)) and intraslab earthquakes (1958 (M8.3), 1978 (M7.8), 1993 (M7.6), 1994 (M8.3)) had few or no foreshocks. In the examination of the active foreshocks, we relocated foreshocks by the Modified JHD method (Hurukawa, 1995), compared relocated foreshock areas with mainshock coseismic slip distributions estimated by the teleseismic body-wave inversion (Kikuchi and Kanamori, 2003), and examined the relation between active foreshock sequences and regional background seismicity. This study was supported by the MEXT's "New disaster mitigation research project on Mega thrust earthquakes around Nankai/Ryukyu subduction zones".

  13. Comparison of the activities of the lantibiotics nisin and lacticin 3147 against clinically significant mycobacteria.

    PubMed

    Carroll, James; Draper, Lorraine A; O'Connor, Paula M; Coffey, Aidan; Hill, Colin; Ross, R Paul; Cotter, Paul D; O'Mahony, Jim

    2010-08-01

    The aim of this study was to use the microtitre alamarBlue assay to investigate and compare the antimycobacterial potential of the lantibiotics nisin and lacticin 3147 against a representative cohort of clinically significant mycobacteria, i.e. Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Ra, Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP) ATCC 19698 and Mycobacterium kansasii CIT11/06. Lacticin 3147 displayed potent activity against all strains of mycobacteria, with MIC(90) values (lowest concentration of lantibiotic that prevented growth of >90% of the bacterial population) of 60 mg/L and 15 mg/L for M. kansasii and MAP, respectively. Lacticin 3147 was particularly effective against M. tuberculosis H37Ra, with a MIC(90) value of 7.5mg/L. Nisin, although inhibitory, was generally less potent against all strains of mycobacteria, with MIC(90) values of 60 mg/L for M. kansasii and >60 mg/L for MAP and M. tuberculosis H37Ra. Thus, lacticin 3147 is a potent antimycobacterial peptide that shows superior activity compared with nisin at physiological pH. PMID:20547041

  14. Significance of neuronal cytochrome P450 activity in opioid-mediated stress-induced analgesia.

    PubMed

    Hough, Lindsay B; Nalwalk, Julia W; Yang, Weizhu; Ding, Xinxin

    2014-08-26

    Stressful environmental changes can suppress nociceptive transmission, a phenomenon known as "stress-induced analgesia". Depending on the stressor and the subject, opioid or non-opioid mechanisms are activated. Brain μ opioid receptors mediate analgesia evoked either by exogenous agents (e.g. morphine), or by the release of endogenous opioids following stressful procedures. Recent work with morphine and neuronal cytochrome P450 (P450)-deficient mice proposed a signal transduction role for P450 enzymes in µ analgesia. Since µ opioid receptors also mediate some forms of stress-induced analgesia, the present studies assessed the significance of brain P450 activity in opioid-mediated stress-induced analgesia. Two widely-used models of opioid stress-induced analgesia (restraint and warm water swim) were studied in both sexes of wild-type control and P450-deficient (Null) mice. In control mice, both stressors evoked moderate analgesic responses which were blocked by pretreatment with the opioid antagonist naltrexone, confirming the opioid nature of these responses. Consistent with literature, sex differences (control female>control male) were seen in swim-induced, but not restraint-induced, analgesia. Null mice showed differential responses to the two stress paradigms. As compared with control subjects, Null mice showed highly attenuated restraint-induced analgesia, showing a critical role for neuronal P450s in this response. However, warm water swim-induced analgesia was unchanged in Null vs. control mice. Additional control experiments confirmed the absence of morphine analgesia in Null mice. These results are the first to show that some forms of opioid-mediated stress-induced analgesia require brain neuronal P450 activity.

  15. Effects of glucose on the performance of enhanced biological phosphorus removal activated sludge enriched with acetate.

    PubMed

    Gebremariam, Seyoum Yami; Beutel, Marc W; Christian, David; Hess, Thomas F

    2012-10-01

    The effects of glucose on enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) activated sludge enriched with acetate was investigated using sequencing batch reactors. A glucose/acetate mixture was serially added to the test reactor in ratios of 25/75%, 50/50%, and 75/25% and the EBPR activity was compared to the control reactor fed with 100% acetate. P removal increased at a statistically significant level to a near-complete in the test reactor when the mixture increased to 50/50%. However, EBPR deteriorated when the glucose/acetate mixture increased to 75/25% in the test reactor and when the control reactor abruptly switched to 100% glucose. These results, in contrast to the EBPR conventional wisdom, suggest that the addition of glucose at moderate levels in wastewaters does not impede and may enhance EBPR, and that glucose waste products should be explored as an economical sustainable alternative when COD enhancement of EBPR is needed.

  16. Enhancement of sludge reduction and methane production by removing extracellular polymeric substances from waste activated sludge.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Minh Tuan; Mohd Yasin, Nazlina Haiza; Miyazaki, Toshiki; Maeda, Toshinari

    2014-12-01

    The management of waste activated sludge (WAS) recycling is a concern that affects the development of the future low-carbon society, particularly sludge reduction and biomass utilization. In this study, we investigated the effect of removing extracellular polymeric substances (EPS), which play important roles in the adhesion and flocculation of WAS, on increased sludge disintegration, thereby enhancing sludge reduction and methane production by anaerobic digestion. EPS removal from WAS by ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) significantly enhanced sludge reduction, i.e., 49 ± 5% compared with 27 ± 1% of the control at the end the digestion process. Methane production was also improved in WAS without EPS by 8881 ± 109 CH4 μmol g(-1) dry-weight of sludge. Microbial activity was determined by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and real-time polymerase chain reaction, which showed that the hydrolysis and acetogenesis stages were enhanced by pretreatment with 2% EDTA, with a larger methanogenic community and better methane production.

  17. Achieving significantly enhanced visible-light photocatalytic efficiency using a polyelectrolyte: the composites of exfoliated titania nanosheets, graphene, and poly(diallyl-dimethyl-ammonium chloride)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Qian; An, Qi; Luan, Xinglong; Huang, Hongwei; Li, Xiaowei; Meng, Zilin; Tong, Wangshu; Chen, Xiaodong; Chu, Paul K.; Zhang, Yihe

    2015-08-01

    A high-performance visible-light-active photocatalyst is prepared using the polyelectrolyte/exfoliated titania nanosheet/graphene oxide (GO) precursor by flocculation followed by calcination. The polyelectrolyte poly(diallyl-dimethyl-ammonium chloride) serves not only as an effective binder to precipitate GO and titania nanosheets, but also boosts the overall performance of the catalyst significantly. Unlike most titania nanosheet-based catalysts reported in the literature, the composite absorbs light in the UV-Vis-NIR range. Its decomposition rate of methylene blue is 98% under visible light. This novel strategy of using a polymer to enhance the catalytic performance of titania nanosheet-based catalysts affords immense potential in designing and fabricating next-generation photocatalysts with high efficiency.A high-performance visible-light-active photocatalyst is prepared using the polyelectrolyte/exfoliated titania nanosheet/graphene oxide (GO) precursor by flocculation followed by calcination. The polyelectrolyte poly(diallyl-dimethyl-ammonium chloride) serves not only as an effective binder to precipitate GO and titania nanosheets, but also boosts the overall performance of the catalyst significantly. Unlike most titania nanosheet-based catalysts reported in the literature, the composite absorbs light in the UV-Vis-NIR range. Its decomposition rate of methylene blue is 98% under visible light. This novel strategy of using a polymer to enhance the catalytic performance of titania nanosheet-based catalysts affords immense potential in designing and fabricating next-generation photocatalysts with high efficiency. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c5nr03256c

  18. Significant enhancement of compositional and superconducting homogeneity in Ti rather than Ta-doped Nb3Sn

    DOE PAGES

    Tarantini, C.; Sung, Z. -H.; Lee, P. J.; Ghosh, A. K.; Larbalestier, D. C.

    2016-01-25

    Nb3Sn wires are now very close to their final optimization but despite its classical nature, detailed understanding of the role of Ta and Ti doping in the A15 is not fully understood. Long thought to be essentially equivalent in their influence on Hc2, they were interchangeably applied. Here we show that Ti produces significantly more homogeneous chemical and superconducting properties. Despite Ta-doped samples having a slightly higher Tc onset in zero-field, they always have a wider Tc-distribution. In particular, whereas the Ta-doped A15 has a Tc-distribution extending from 18 down to 5-6 K (the lowest expected Tc for the binarymore » A15 phase), the Ti-doped samples have no A15 phase with Tc below ~12 K. The much narrower Tc distribution in the Ti-doped samples has a positive effect on their in-field Tc-distribution too, leading to an extrapolated μ0Hc2(0) 2 Tesla larger than the Ta-doped one. Ti-doping also appears to be very homogeneous even when the Sn content is reduced in order to inhibit breakdown of the diffusion barriers in very high Jc conductors. As a result, the enhanced homogeneity of the Ti-doped samples appears to result from its assistance of rapid diffusion of Sn into the filaments and by its incorporation into the A15 phase interchangeably with Sn on the Sn sites of the A15 phase.« less

  19. Enhancing Neoplasm Expression in Field Pea (Pisum sativum) via Intercropping and Its Significance to Pea Weevil (Bruchus pisorum) Management

    PubMed Central

    Teshome, Abel; Bryngelsson, Tomas; Mendesil, Esayas; Marttila, Salla; Geleta, Mulatu

    2016-01-01

    Neoplasm formation, a non-meristematic tissue growth on young field pea (Pisum sativum L.) pods is triggered in the absence of UV light and/or in response to oviposition by pea weevil (Bruchus pisorum L.). This trait is expressed in some genotypes [neoplastic (Np) genotypes] of P. sativum and has the capacity to obstruct pea weevil larval entry into developing seeds. In the present study, 26% of the tested accessions depicted the trait when grown under greenhouse conditions. However, UV light inhibits full expression of this trait and subsequently it is inconspicuous at the field level. In order to investigate UV light impact on the expression of neoplasm, particular Np genotypes were subjected to UV lamp light exposure in the greenhouse and sunlight at the field level. Under these different growing conditions, the highest mean percentage of Np pods was in the control chamber in the greenhouse (36%) whereas in single and double UV lamp chambers, the percentage dropped to 10 and 15%, respectively. Furthermore, when the same Np genotypes were grown in the field, the percentage of Np pods dropped significantly (7%). In order to enhance Np expression at the field level, intercropping of Np genotypes with sorghum was investigated. As result, the percentage of Np pods was threefold in intercropped Np genotypes as compared to those without intercropping. Therefore, intercropping Np genotypes with other crops such as sorghum and maize can facilitate neoplasm formation, which in turn can minimize the success rate of pea weevil larvae entry into developing seeds. Greenhouse artificial infestation experiments showed that pea weevil damage in Np genotypes is lower in comparison to wild type genotypes. Therefore, promoting Np formation under field conditions via intercropping can serve as part of an integrated pea weevil management strategy especially for small scale farming systems. PMID:27242855

  20. The active enhancer network operated by liganded RXR supports angiogenic activity in macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Daniel, Bence; Hah, Nasun; Horvath, Attila; Czimmerer, Zsolt; Poliska, Szilard; Gyuris, Tibor; Keirsse, Jiri; Gysemans, Conny; Van Ginderachter, Jo A.; Balint, Balint L.; Evans, Ronald M.; Barta, Endre; Nagy, Laszlo

    2014-01-01

    RXR signaling is predicted to have a major impact in macrophages, but neither the biological consequence nor the genomic basis of its ligand activation is known. Comprehensive genome-wide studies were carried out to map liganded RXR-mediated transcriptional changes, active binding sites, and cistromic interactions in the context of the macrophage genome architecture. The macrophage RXR cistrome has 5200 genomic binding sites, which are not impacted by ligand. Active enhancers are characterized by PU.1 binding, an increase of enhancer RNA, and P300 recruitment. Using these features, 387 liganded RXR-bound enhancers were linked to 226 genes, which predominantly reside in CTCF/cohesin-limited functional domains. These findings were molecularly validated using chromosome conformation capture (3C) and 3C combined with sequencing (3C-seq), and we show that selected long-range enhancers communicate with promoters via stable or RXR-induced loops and that some of the enhancers interact with each other, forming an interchromosomal network. A set of angiogenic genes, including Vegfa, has liganded RXR-controlled enhancers and provides the macrophage with a novel inducible program. PMID:25030696

  1. On the relationship between persistent delay activity, repetition enhancement and priming

    PubMed Central

    Tartaglia, Elisa M.; Mongillo, Gianluigi; Brunel, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Human efficiency in processing incoming stimuli (in terms of speed and/or accuracy) is typically enhanced by previous exposure to the same, or closely related stimuli—a phenomenon referred to as priming. In spite of the large body of knowledge accumulated in behavioral studies about the conditions conducive to priming, and its relationship with other forms of memory, the underlying neuronal correlates of priming are still under debate. The idea has repeatedly been advanced that a major neuronal mechanism supporting behaviorally-expressed priming is repetition suppression, a widespread reduction of spiking activity upon stimulus repetition which has been routinely exposed by single-unit recordings in non-human primates performing delayed-response, as well as passive fixation tasks. This proposal is mainly motivated by the observation that, in human fMRI studies, priming is associated to a significant reduction of the BOLD signal (widely interpreted as a proxy of the level of spiking activity) upon stimulus repetition. Here, we critically re-examine a large part of the electrophysiological literature on repetition suppression in non-human primates and find that repetition suppression is systematically accompanied by stimulus-selective delay period activity, together with repetition enhancement, an increase of spiking activity upon stimulus repetition in small neuronal populations. We argue that repetition enhancement constitutes a more viable candidate for a putative neuronal substrate of priming, and propose a minimal framework that links together, mechanistically and functionally, repetition suppression, stimulus-selective delay activity and repetition enhancement. PMID:25657630

  2. Active medulloblastoma enhancers reveal subgroup-specific cellular origins.

    PubMed

    Lin, Charles Y; Erkek, Serap; Tong, Yiai; Yin, Linlin; Federation, Alexander J; Zapatka, Marc; Haldipur, Parthiv; Kawauchi, Daisuke; Risch, Thomas; Warnatz, Hans-Jörg; Worst, Barbara C; Ju, Bensheng; Orr, Brent A; Zeid, Rhamy; Polaski, Donald R; Segura-Wang, Maia; Waszak, Sebastian M; Jones, David T W; Kool, Marcel; Hovestadt, Volker; Buchhalter, Ivo; Sieber, Laura; Johann, Pascal; Chavez, Lukas; Gröschel, Stefan; Ryzhova, Marina; Korshunov, Andrey; Chen, Wenbiao; Chizhikov, Victor V; Millen, Kathleen J; Amstislavskiy, Vyacheslav; Lehrach, Hans; Yaspo, Marie-Laure; Eils, Roland; Lichter, Peter; Korbel, Jan O; Pfister, Stefan M; Bradner, James E; Northcott, Paul A

    2016-02-01

    Medulloblastoma is a highly malignant paediatric brain tumour, often inflicting devastating consequences on the developing child. Genomic studies have revealed four distinct molecular subgroups with divergent biology and clinical behaviour. An understanding of the regulatory circuitry governing the transcriptional landscapes of medulloblastoma subgroups, and how this relates to their respective developmental origins, is lacking. Here, using H3K27ac and BRD4 chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by sequencing (ChIP-seq) coupled with tissue-matched DNA methylation and transcriptome data, we describe the active cis-regulatory landscape across 28 primary medulloblastoma specimens. Analysis of differentially regulated enhancers and super-enhancers reinforced inter-subgroup heterogeneity and revealed novel, clinically relevant insights into medulloblastoma biology. Computational reconstruction of core regulatory circuitry identified a master set of transcription factors, validated by ChIP-seq, that is responsible for subgroup divergence, and implicates candidate cells of origin for Group 4. Our integrated analysis of enhancer elements in a large series of primary tumour samples reveals insights into cis-regulatory architecture, unrecognized dependencies, and cellular origins.

  3. Psychopaths Show Enhanced Amygdala Activation during Fear Conditioning

    PubMed Central

    Schultz, Douglas H.; Balderston, Nicholas L.; Baskin-Sommers, Arielle R.; Larson, Christine L.; Helmstetter, Fred J.

    2016-01-01

    Psychopathy is a personality disorder characterized by emotional deficits and a failure to inhibit impulsive behavior and is often subdivided into “primary” and “secondary” psychopathic subtypes. The maladaptive behavior related to primary psychopathy is thought to reflect constitutional “fearlessness,” while the problematic behavior related to secondary psychopathy is motivated by other factors. The fearlessness observed in psychopathy has often been interpreted as reflecting a fundamental deficit in amygdala function, and previous studies have provided support for a low-fear model of psychopathy. However, many of these studies fail to use appropriate screening procedures, use liberal inclusion criteria, or have used unconventional approaches to assay amygdala function. We measured brain activity with BOLD imaging in primary and secondary psychopaths and non-psychopathic control subjects during Pavlovian fear conditioning. In contrast to the low-fear model, we observed normal fear expression in primary psychopaths. Psychopaths also displayed greater differential BOLD activity in the amygdala relative to matched controls. Inverse patterns of activity were observed in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) for primary versus secondary psychopaths. Primary psychopaths exhibited a pattern of activity in the dorsal and ventral ACC consistent with enhanced fear expression, while secondary psychopaths exhibited a pattern of activity in these regions consistent with fear inhibition. These results contradict the low-fear model of psychopathy and suggest that the low fear observed for psychopaths in previous studies may be specific to secondary psychopaths. PMID:27014154

  4. Psychopaths Show Enhanced Amygdala Activation during Fear Conditioning.

    PubMed

    Schultz, Douglas H; Balderston, Nicholas L; Baskin-Sommers, Arielle R; Larson, Christine L; Helmstetter, Fred J

    2016-01-01

    Psychopathy is a personality disorder characterized by emotional deficits and a failure to inhibit impulsive behavior and is often subdivided into "primary" and "secondary" psychopathic subtypes. The maladaptive behavior related to primary psychopathy is thought to reflect constitutional "fearlessness," while the problematic behavior related to secondary psychopathy is motivated by other factors. The fearlessness observed in psychopathy has often been interpreted as reflecting a fundamental deficit in amygdala function, and previous studies have provided support for a low-fear model of psychopathy. However, many of these studies fail to use appropriate screening procedures, use liberal inclusion criteria, or have used unconventional approaches to assay amygdala function. We measured brain activity with BOLD imaging in primary and secondary psychopaths and non-psychopathic control subjects during Pavlovian fear conditioning. In contrast to the low-fear model, we observed normal fear expression in primary psychopaths. Psychopaths also displayed greater differential BOLD activity in the amygdala relative to matched controls. Inverse patterns of activity were observed in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) for primary versus secondary psychopaths. Primary psychopaths exhibited a pattern of activity in the dorsal and ventral ACC consistent with enhanced fear expression, while secondary psychopaths exhibited a pattern of activity in these regions consistent with fear inhibition. These results contradict the low-fear model of psychopathy and suggest that the low fear observed for psychopaths in previous studies may be specific to secondary psychopaths.

  5. Human Erythropoietin Dimers with Markedly Enhanced in vivo Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sytkowski, Arthur J.; Dotimas Lunn, Elizabeth; Davis, Kerry Lynn; Feldman, Laurie; Siekman, Suvia

    1998-02-01

    Human erythropoietin, a widely used and important therapeutic glycoprotein, has a relatively short plasma half-life due to clearance by glomerular filtration as well as by other mechanisms. We hypothesized that an erythropoietin species with a larger molecular size would exhibit an increased plasma half-life and, potentially, an enhanced biological activity. We now report the production of biologically active erythropoietin dimers and trimers by chemical crosslinking of the conventional monomeric form. We imparted free sulfhydryl residues to a pool of erythropoietin monomer by chemical modification. A second pool was reacted with another modifying reagent to yield monomer with male-imido groups. Upon mixing these two pools, covalently linked dimers and trimers were formed that were biologically active in vitro. The plasma half-life of erythropoietin dimers in rabbits was >24 h compared with 4 h for the monomers. Importantly, erythropoietin dimers were biologically active in vivo as shown by their ability to increase the hematocrits of mice when injected subcutaneously. In addition, the dimers exhibited >26-fold higher activity in vivo than did the monomers and were very effective after only one dose. Dimeric and other oligomeric forms of Epo may have an important role in therapy.

  6. Psychopaths Show Enhanced Amygdala Activation during Fear Conditioning.

    PubMed

    Schultz, Douglas H; Balderston, Nicholas L; Baskin-Sommers, Arielle R; Larson, Christine L; Helmstetter, Fred J

    2016-01-01

    Psychopathy is a personality disorder characterized by emotional deficits and a failure to inhibit impulsive behavior and is often subdivided into "primary" and "secondary" psychopathic subtypes. The maladaptive behavior related to primary psychopathy is thought to reflect constitutional "fearlessness," while the problematic behavior related to secondary psychopathy is motivated by other factors. The fearlessness observed in psychopathy has often been interpreted as reflecting a fundamental deficit in amygdala function, and previous studies have provided support for a low-fear model of psychopathy. However, many of these studies fail to use appropriate screening procedures, use liberal inclusion criteria, or have used unconventional approaches to assay amygdala function. We measured brain activity with BOLD imaging in primary and secondary psychopaths and non-psychopathic control subjects during Pavlovian fear conditioning. In contrast to the low-fear model, we observed normal fear expression in primary psychopaths. Psychopaths also displayed greater differential BOLD activity in the amygdala relative to matched controls. Inverse patterns of activity were observed in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) for primary versus secondary psychopaths. Primary psychopaths exhibited a pattern of activity in the dorsal and ventral ACC consistent with enhanced fear expression, while secondary psychopaths exhibited a pattern of activity in these regions consistent with fear inhibition. These results contradict the low-fear model of psychopathy and suggest that the low fear observed for psychopaths in previous studies may be specific to secondary psychopaths. PMID:27014154

  7. MWCNT/CdS hybrid nanocomposite for enhanced photocatalytic activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chaudhary, Deepti; Khare, Neeraj; Vankar, V. D.

    2016-05-01

    Multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT)/CdS hybrid nanocomposite were synthesized by one step hydrothermal method. MWCNTs were used as a substrate for the growth of CdS nanoparticles. MWCNT/CdS nanocomposite and pure CdS were characterized by XRD, TEM, UV-vis and photoluminescence spectroscopy. HRTEM study confirms the intimate contact of CdS with MWCNT. The photocatalytic activity of nanocomposite was studied for the degradation of methylene blue dye under UV irradiation. The enhanced photocatalytic activity of MWCNT/CdS nanocomposite as compared to pure CdS has been attributed to reduced recombination of photogenerated charge carriers due to interfacial electron transfer from CdS to MWCNT.

  8. Carbon Nanotube Materials for Substrate Enhanced Control of Catalytic Activity

    SciTech Connect

    Heben, M.; Dillon, A. C.; Engtrakul, C.; Lee, S.-H.; Kelley, R. D.; Kini, A. M.

    2007-05-01

    Carbon SWNTs are attractive materials for supporting electrocatalysts. The properties of SWNTs are highly tunable and controlled by the nanotube's circumferential periodicity and their surface chemistry. These unique characteristics suggest that architectures constructed from these types of carbon support materials would exhibit interesting and useful properties. Here, we expect that the structure of the carbon nanotube support will play a major role in stabilizing metal electrocatalysts under extreme operating conditions and suppress both catalyst and support degradation. Furthermore, the chemical modification of the carbon nanotube surfaces can be expected to alter the interface between the catalyst and support, thus, enhancing the activity and utilization of the electrocatalysts. We plan to incorporate discrete reaction sites into the carbon nanotube lattice to create intimate electrical contacts with the catalyst particles to increase the metal catalyst activity and utilization. The work involves materials synthesis, design of electrode architectures on the nanoscale, control of the electronic, ionic, and mass fluxes, and use of advanced optical spectroscopy techniques.

  9. Enhancement of activated sludge disintegration and dewaterability by Fenton process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heng, G. C.; Isa, M. H.

    2016-06-01

    Municipal and industrial wastewater treatment plants produce large amounts of sludge. This excess sludge is an inevitable drawback inherent to the activated sludge process. In this study, the waste activated sludge was obtained from the campus wastewater treatment plant at Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (UTP), Malaysia. Fenton pretreatment was optimized by using the response surface methodology (RSM) to study the effects of three operating conditions including the dosage of H2O2 (g H2O2/kg TS), the molar ratio of H2O2/Fe2+ and reaction time. The optimum operating variables to achieve MLVSS removal 65%, CST reduction 28%, sCOD 11000 mg/L and EPS 500 mg/L were: 1000 g H2O2/kg TS, H2O2/Fe2+ molar ratio 70 and reaction time 45 min. Fenton process was proved to be able to enhance the sludge disintegration and dewaterability.

  10. Optimisation and significance of ATP analysis for measuring active biomass in granular activated carbon filters used in water treatment.

    PubMed

    Magic-Knezev, Aleksandra; van der Kooij, Dick

    2004-11-01

    A method for determining the concentration of active microbial biomass in granular activated carbon (GAC) filters used in water treatment was developed to facilitate studies on the interactions between adsorption processes and biological activity in such filters. High-energy sonication at a power input of 40 W was applied to GAC samples for the detachment of biomass which was measured as adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Modelling of biomass removal indicated that a series of six to eight sonication treatments of 2 min each yielded more than 90% of the attached active biomass. The ATP concentrations in 30 different GAC filters at nine treatment plants in The Netherlands ranged from 25 to 5000 ng ATP cm(-3) GAC, with the highest concentrations at long filter run times and pretreatment with ozone. A similar concentration range was observed in nine rapid sand (RS) filters. ATP concentrations correlated significantly (p<0.05) with total direct bacterial cell counts in each of these filter types, but the median value of the ATP content per cell in GAC filters (2.1 x 10(-8) ng ATP/cell) was much lower than in the RS filters (3.6 x 10(-7) ng ATP/cell). Average biofilm concentrations ranging from 500 to 10(5) pg ATP cm(-2) were calculated assuming spherical shapes for the GAC particles but values were about 20 times lower when the surface of pores >1 microm diameter is included in these calculations. The quantitative biomass analysis with ATP enables direct comparisons with biofilm concentrations reported for spiral wound membranes used in water treatment, for distribution system pipes and other aquatic environments.

  11. Enhancing the Activity of a Protein by Stereospecific Unfolding

    PubMed Central

    Hua, Qing-xin; Xu, Bin; Huang, Kun; Hu, Shi-Quan; Nakagawa, Satoe; Jia, Wenhua; Wang, Shuhua; Whittaker, Jonathan; Katsoyannis, Panayotis G.; Weiss, Michael A.

    2009-01-01

    A central tenet of molecular biology holds that the function of a protein is mediated by its structure. An inactive ground-state conformation may nonetheless be enjoined by the interplay of competing biological constraints. A model is provided by insulin, well characterized at atomic resolution by x-ray crystallography. Here, we demonstrate that the activity of the hormone is enhanced by stereospecific unfolding of a conserved structural element. A bifunctional β-strand mediates both self-assembly (within β-cell storage vesicles) and receptor binding (in the bloodstream). This strand is anchored by an invariant side chain (PheB24); its substitution by Ala leads to an unstable but native-like analog of low activity. Substitution by d-Ala is equally destabilizing, and yet the protein diastereomer exhibits enhanced activity with segmental unfolding of the β-strand. Corresponding photoactivable derivatives (containing l- or d-para-azido-Phe) cross-link to the insulin receptor with higher d-specific efficiency. Aberrant exposure of hydrophobic surfaces in the analogs is associated with accelerated fibrillation, a form of aggregation-coupled misfolding associated with cellular toxicity. Conservation of PheB24, enforced by its dual role in native self-assembly and induced fit, thus highlights the implicit role of misfolding as an evolutionary constraint. Whereas classical crystal structures of insulin depict its storage form, signaling requires engagement of a detachable arm at an extended receptor interface. Because this active conformation resembles an amyloidogenic intermediate, we envisage that induced fit and self-assembly represent complementary molecular adaptations to potential proteotoxicity. The cryptic threat of misfolding poses a universal constraint in the evolution of polypeptide sequences. PMID:19321436

  12. Enhancing Academic Engagement in Knowledge Transfer Activity in the UK

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Francis-Smythe, Jan

    2008-01-01

    There has been an increasing call in the UK over the last decade for universities to become more entrepreneurial with a strengthening of university and industry/community links to contribute more significantly to the knowledge economy., and for UK higher education institutions (HEIs) to consider ways in which they can more actively engage in…

  13. Enhanced parasympathetic activity of sportive women is paradoxically associated to enhanced resting energy expenditure.

    PubMed

    Messina, G; Vicidomini, C; Viggiano, An; Tafuri, D; Cozza, V; Cibelli, G; Devastato, A; De Luca, B; Monda, M

    2012-08-16

    The resting energy expenditure and the adaptation of the autonomic nervous system induced by sport activities in sedentary women and in female professional basketball players have been studied. Resting energy expenditure, body composition and the level of activity of the autonomic nervous system were measured before and after a period of six months. The physical activity induced an increase in resting energy expenditure and free fat mass without variations in body weight. Basketball players showed a significant increase in the parasympathetic activity, measured by the power spectral analysis of the heart rate variability. These findings demonstrate that resting energy expenditure is higher in the athletes than in sedentary women, despite the augmented parasympathetic activity that is usually related to lower energy expenditure.

  14. Enhanced Raman sensitivity using an actively stabilized external resonator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, David J.; Glugla, Manfred; Penzhorn, Ralf-Dieter

    2001-04-01

    An enhancement up to 250-fold in laser Raman signals for real-time gas analysis has been achieved within an actively stabilized external resonator (ASER), whose length is actively matched to the single-frequency excitation laser using the Pound-Drever technique. With the Raman cell present, enhancements up to 50-fold are achieved, and the resulting detection limit for hydrogen in ambient-pressure gas mixtures is about ten parts-per-million in a 1 min analysis period at unity signal-to-noise ratio. Based upon the recent development of a fiber-pumped Nd:YVO4 laser with single-frequency output exceeding 5 W at 532 nm, this highly sensitive instrument is applied to detection of tritiated gases, wherein the compactness and low heat of this laser head permit placing the entire optical system, including laser head, charge coupled Raman detector, and ASER, within the glove box necessary for secondary containment of tritium, thereby accomplishing a robust, highly sensitive Raman analytical system for hazardous substances.

  15. Prognostic Significance of Estimation of Pseudocholinesterase Activity and Role of Pralidoxime Therapy in Organophosphorous Poisoning

    PubMed Central

    Chaudhary, Shyam Chand; Singh, Khemraj; Sawlani, Kamal Kumar; Jain, Nirdesh; Vaish, Arvind Kumar; Atam, Virendra; Patel, Munna Lal; Agarwal, Avinash

    2013-01-01

    Background: Organophosphorous (OP) poisoning is one of the most common poisonings seen in India. OP compounds act through inhibition of enzyme acetylcholinesterase and estimation of pseudocholinesterase (PCE) activity strengthens the diagnosis in clinically uncertain cases of OP poisoning. The role of pralidoxime (PAM) therapy in OP poisoning has been controversial. Study Objectives: This study was aimed to determine the prognostic significance of estimation of PCE activity and also to assess the role of PAM therapy in OP poisoning. Materials and Methods: Patients of suspected OP poisoning of age >12 years admitted to emergency unit at a tertiary healthcare center of north India were enrolled. Patients were categorized into two groups; group A who were given intravenous atropine and group B who were given injectable PAM along with atropine. Serum PCE level was estimated at the time of admission in all patients and severity of OP poisoning was assessed according to PCE level. Requirement of atropine, oxygen inhalation, intubation and ventilatory support, total hospital stay, and mortality were compared between different classes of severity and also between Groups A and B. Results: This study included a total of 70 subjects, 35 in each group with mean age of 24.99 ± 8.7 years. Out of 70 subjects 49 (70%) were male and 21 (30%) were female. Forty nine patients (70%) of OP poisoning were with suicidal intent while 21 (30%) cases were accidentally poisoned. In all suicidal cases route of poisoning was ingestion whereas in all the accidental cases route of exposure was inhalational. PCE levels were reduced in all the cases and the mean level was 3,154.16 ± 2,562.40 IU/L. The total dose of atropine required, need for oxygen inhalation and need for intubation and ventilatory support, mean duration of hospital stay and mortality rate (P = 0.003) were higher in moderate to severe cases and did not have significant difference between Groups A and B. Conclusion: The study

  16. Treatment of activated carbon to enhance catalytic activity for reduction of nitric oxide with ammonia

    SciTech Connect

    Ku, B.J.; Rhee, H.K. . Dept. of Chemical Engineering); Lee, J.K.; Park, D. )

    1994-11-01

    Catalytic activity of activated carbon treated with various techniques was examined in a fixed bed reactor for the reduction of nitric oxide with ammonia at 150 C. Activated carbon derived from coconut shell impregnated with an aqueous solution of ammonium sulfate, further treated with sulfuric acid, dried at 120 C, and then heated in an inert gas stream at 400 C, showed the highest catalytic activity within the range of experimental conditions. The enhancement of catalytic activity of modified activated carbon could be attributed to the increase in the amount of oxygen function groups which increased the adsorption site for ammonia. Catalytic activity of activated carbons depended on the surface area and the oxygen content as well.

  17. Novel pyrazole derivatives as neutral CB₁ antagonists with significant activity towards food intake.

    PubMed

    Manca, Ilaria; Mastinu, Andrea; Olimpieri, Francesca; Falzoi, Matteo; Sani, Monica; Ruiu, Stefania; Loriga, Giovanni; Volonterio, Alessandro; Tambaro, Simone; Bottazzi, Mirko Emilio Heiner; Zanda, Matteo; Pinna, Gérard Aimè; Lazzari, Paolo

    2013-04-01

    In spite of rimonabant's withdrawal from the European market due to its adverse effects, interest in the development of drugs based on CB1 antagonists is revamping on the basis of the peculiar properties of this class of compounds. In particular, new strategies have been proposed for the treatment of obesity and/or related risk factors through CB1 antagonists, i.e. by the development of selectively peripherally acting agents or by the identification of neutral CB1 antagonists. New compounds based on the lead CB1 antagonist/inverse agonist rimonabant have been synthesized with focus on obtaining neutral CB1 antagonists. Amongst the new derivatives described in this paper, the mixture of the two enantiomers (±)-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-3-(2-cyclohexyl-1-hydroxyethyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole ((±)-5), and compound 5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-3-[(Z)-2-cyclohexyl-1-fluorovinyl]-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole ((Z)-6), showed interesting pharmacological profiles. According to the preliminary pharmacological evaluation, these novel pyrazole derivatives showed in fact both neutral CB1 antagonism behaviour and significant in vivo activity towards food intake.

  18. Nitric oxide fumigation stimulates flavonoid and phenolic accumulation and enhances antioxidant activity of mushroom.

    PubMed

    Dong, Jufang; Zhang, Ming; Lu, Li; Sun, Lina; Xu, Maojun

    2012-12-01

    The effects of nitric oxide (NO) on antioxidant activity and contents of phenolics and flavonoids in mushroom Russula griseocarnosa were investigated. Freshly harvested mushrooms were fumigated with 0, 10, 20 and 30μLL(-1) NO at 20°C for 2h and then taken to examine the antioxidant activities using assays of reducing power, chelating effect on ferrous ions, scavenging effect on hydroxyl free radicals, and 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl radical scavenging activity. The results showed that the antioxidant activities of the mushrooms fumigated with NO were significantly increased when compared to the controls. Moreover, NO fumigation significantly enhanced phenolic and flavonoid contents and stimulated the activities of phenylalanine ammonia-lyase and chalcone synthase. The results indicated that NO fumigation might have potential application for enhancing the bioactive compounds and improving antioxidant activities in the mushrooms. Furthermore, the data suggested that the NO-induced phenolic and flavonoid accumulation was due to the activation of the biosynthetic pathways in the mushrooms.

  19. Significant Enhancement of the Chiral Correlation Length in Nematic Liquid Crystals by Gold Nanoparticle Surfaces Featuring Axially Chiral Binaphthyl Ligands.

    PubMed

    Mori, Taizo; Sharma, Anshul; Hegmann, Torsten

    2016-01-26

    surface is diminished as the size of the particle is reduced. However, in comparison to the free ligands, per chiral molecule all tested gold nanoparticles induce helical distortions in a 10- to 50-fold larger number of liquid crystal host molecules surrounding each particle, indicating a significantly enhanced chiral correlation length. We propose that both the helicity and the chirality transfer efficiency of axially chiral binaphthyl derivatives can be controlled at metal nanoparticle surfaces by adjusting the particle size and curvature as well as the number and density of the chiral ligands to ultimately measure and tune the chiral correlation length.

  20. Latent myostatin has significant activity and this activity is controlled more efficiently by WFIKKN1 than by WFIKKN2.

    PubMed

    Szláma, György; Trexler, Mária; Patthy, László

    2013-08-01

    Myostatin, a negative regulator of skeletal muscle growth, is produced from myostatin precursor by multiple steps of proteolytic processing. After cleavage by a furin-type protease, the propeptide and growth factor domains remain associated, forming a noncovalent complex, the latent myostatin complex. Mature myostatin is liberated from latent myostatin by bone morphogenetic protein 1/tolloid proteases. Here, we show that, in reporter assays, latent myostatin preparations have significant myostatin activity, as the noncovalent complex dissociates at an appreciable rate, and both mature and semilatent myostatin (a complex in which the dimeric growth factor domain interacts with only one molecule of myostatin propeptide) bind to myostatin receptor. The interaction of myostatin receptor with semilatent myostatin is efficiently blocked by WAP, Kazal, immunoglobulin, Kunitz and NTR domain-containing protein 1 or growth and differentiation factor-associated serum protein 2 (WFIKKN1), a large extracellular multidomain protein that binds both mature myostatin and myostatin propeptide [Kondás et al. (2008) J Biol Chem 283, 23677-23684]. Interestingly, the paralogous protein WAP, Kazal, immunoglobulin, Kunitz and NTR domain-containing protein 2 or growth and differentiation factor-associated serum protein 1 (WFIKKN2) was less efficient than WFIKKN1 as an antagonist of the interactions of myostatin receptor with semilatent myostatin. Our studies have shown that this difference is attributable to the fact that only WFIKKN1 has affinity for the propeptide domain, and this interaction increases its potency in suppressing the receptor-binding activity of semilatent myostatin. As the interaction of WFIKKN1 with various forms of myostatin permits tighter control of myostatin activity until myostatin is liberated from latent myostatin by bone morphogenetic protein 1/tolloid proteases, WFIKKN1 may have greater potential as an antimyostatic agent than WFIKKN2.

  1. Comparing activated carbon of different particle sizes on enhancing methane generation in upflow anaerobic digester.

    PubMed

    Xu, Suyun; He, Chuanqiu; Luo, Liwen; Lü, Fan; He, Pinjing; Cui, Lifeng

    2015-11-01

    Two sizes of conductive particles, i.e. 10-20 mesh granulated activated carbon (GAC) and 80-100 mesh powdered activated carbon (PAC) were added into lab-scale upflow anaerobic sludge blanket reactors, respectively, to testify their enhancement on the syntrophic metabolism of alcohols and volatile fatty acids (VFAs) in 95days operation. When OLR increased to more than 5.8gCOD/L/d, the differences between GAC/PAC supplemented reactors and the control reactor became more significant. The introduction of activated carbon could facilitate the enrichment of methanogens and accelerate the startup of methanogenesis, as indicated by enhanced methane yield and substrate degradation. High-throughput pyrosequencing analysis showed that syntrophic bacteria and Methanosarcina sp. with versatile metabolic capability increased in the tightly absorbed fraction on the PAC surface, leading to the promoted syntrophic associations. Thus PAC prevails over than GAC for methanogenic reactor with heavy load. PMID:26298405

  2. Enhanced stability and activity of an antimicrobial peptide in conjugation with silver nanoparticle.

    PubMed

    Pal, Indrani; Brahmkhatri, Varsha P; Bera, Swapna; Bhattacharyya, Dipita; Quirishi, Yasrib; Bhunia, Anirban; Atreya, Hanudatta S

    2016-12-01

    The conjugation of nanoparticles with antimicrobial peptides (AMP) is emerging as a promising route to achieve superior antimicrobial activity. However, the nature of peptide-nanoparticle interactions in these systems remains unclear. This study describes a system consisting of a cysteine containing antimicrobial peptide conjugated with silver nanoparticles, in which the two components exhibit a dynamic interaction resulting in a significantly enhanced stability and biological activity compared to that of the individual components. This was investigated using NMR spectroscopy in conjunction with other biophysical techniques. Using fluorescence assisted cell sorting and membrane mimics we carried out a quantitative comparison of the activity of the AMP-nanoparticle system and the free peptide. Taken together, the study provides new insights into nanoparticle-AMP interactions at a molecular level and brings out the factors that will be useful for consideration while designing new conjugates with enhanced functionality. PMID:27585423

  3. Activated Protein C Enhances Human Keratinocyte Barrier Integrity via Sequential Activation of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor and Tie2*

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Meilang; Chow, Shu-Oi; Dervish, Suat; Chan, Yee-Ka Agnes; Julovi, Sohel M.; Jackson, Christopher J.

    2011-01-01

    Keratinocytes play a critical role in maintaining epidermal barrier function. Activated protein C (APC), a natural anticoagulant with anti-inflammatory and endothelial barrier protective properties, significantly increased the barrier impedance of keratinocyte monolayers, measured by electric cell substrate impedance sensing and FITC-dextran flux. In response to APC, Tie2, a tyrosine kinase receptor, was rapidly activated within 30 min, and relocated to cell-cell contacts. APC also increased junction proteins zona occludens, claudin-1 and VE-cadherin. Inhibition of Tie2 by its peptide inhibitor or small interfering RNA abolished the barrier protective effect of APC. Interestingly, APC did not activate Tie2 through its major ligand, angiopoietin-1, but instead acted by binding to endothelial protein C receptor, cleaving protease-activated receptor-1 and transactivating EGF receptor. Furthermore, when activation of Akt, but not ERK, was inhibited, the barrier protective effect of APC on keratinocytes was abolished. Thus, APC activates Tie2, via a mechanism requiring, in sequential order, the receptors, endothelial protein C receptor, protease-activated receptor-1, and EGF receptor, which selectively enhances the PI3K/Akt signaling to enhance junctional complexes and reduce keratinocyte permeability. PMID:21173154

  4. Enhanced biodegradation of iopromide and trimethoprim in nitrifying activated sludge.

    PubMed

    Batt, Angela L; Kim, Sungpyo; Aga, Diana S

    2006-12-01

    Iopromide (an X-ray contrast agent) and trimethoprim (an antibacterial drug) are frequently detected pharmaceuticals in effluents of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) and in surface waters due to their persistence and high usage. Laboratory-scale experiments showed that a significantly higher removal rate in nitrifying activated sludge as compared to conventional activated sludge was observed for both iopromide and trimethoprim. When the activity of the nitrifying bacteria was inhibited, the percent removal of iopromide decreased from 97 to 86% while trimethoprim removal decreased from 70 to 25%. The metabolite of iopromide identified when nitrification was not inhibited was a dehydroxylated iopromide at the two side chains. However, when the nitrifying bacteria were inhibited the metabolite identified was a carboxylate, formed during the oxidation of the primary alcohol on the side chain of iopromide. These results suggest that the nitrifying bacteria are important in the observed biodegradation of iopromide in the activated sludge with higher solid retention time (SRT). Results from the laboratory-scale study were corroborated by the observed removal efficiencies in a full-scale municipal WWTP, which showed that iopromide (ranging from 0.10 to 0.27 microg/L) and trimethoprim (ranging from 0.0.08 to 0.53 microg/L) were removed more effectively in the nitrifying activate sludge which has a higher SRT (49 days) than in the conventional activated sludge (SRT of 6 days). In nitrifying activated sludge, the percent removal of iopromide in the WWTP reached 61%, while in conventional activated sludge, average removal was negligible. For trimethoprim, removal was limited to about 1% in the conventional activated sludge, while in the nitrifying activated sludge, the removal was increased to 50%.

  5. Activation of the recombinant human alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor significantly raises intracellular free calcium.

    PubMed

    Delbono, O; Gopalakrishnan, M; Renganathan, M; Monteggia, L M; Messi, M L; Sullivan, J P

    1997-01-01

    The alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subtype, unlike other neuronal nicotinic receptors, exhibits a relatively high permeability to Ca++ ions. Although Ca++ entry through this receptor subtype has been implicated in various Ca(++)-dependent processes in the central nervous system, little is known about how this receptor modulates mammalian intracellular Ca++ dynamics. Intracellular Ca++ responses evoked by activation of the human alpha 7 nAChRs stably expressed in HEK-293 (human embryonic kidney) cells were studied. Inward current and intracellular Ca++ transients were recorded simultaneously in response to a fast drug application system. Current recordings under whole-cell voltage-clamp and fast ratiometric intracellular Ca++ imaging acquisition were synchronized to drug pulses. The mean peak [Ca++]i observed with 100 microM (-)-nicotine was 356 +/- 48 nM (n = 8). The magnitude of the intracellular Ca++ elevation corresponds to a 20% fractional current carried by Ca++ ions. The EC50 of the intracellular Ca++ responses for (-)-nicotine, (+/-)-epibatidine, 1,1 dimethyl-4-phenyl-piperazinium and acetylcholine were 51, 3.5, 75 and 108 microM, respectively. These EC50 values strongly correlate with those recorded for the cationic inward current through alpha 7 nAChR. alpha-Bungarotoxin, methyllcaconitine or extracellular Ca++ chelation ablated (-)-nicotine-evoked increase in intracellular Ca++ concentration. This study provides evidence that cation influx through the human alpha 7 nAChR is sufficient to mediate a significant, transient, rise in intracellular Ca++ concentration.

  6. Fatty acid conjugation enhances the activities of antimicrobial peptides.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhining; Yuan, Penghui; Xing, Meng; He, Zhumei; Dong, Chuanfu; Cao, Yongchang; Liu, Qiuyun

    2013-04-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are small molecules that play a crucial role in innate immunity in multi-cellular organisms, and usually expressed and secreted constantly at basal levels to prevent infection, but local production can be augmented upon an infection. The clock is ticking as rising antibiotic abuse has led to the emergence of many drug resistance bacteria. Due to their broad spectrum antibiotic and antifungal activities as well as anti-viral and anti-tumor activities, efforts are being made to develop antimicrobial peptides into future microbial agents. This article describes some of the recent patents on antimicrobial peptides with fatty acid conjugation. Potency and selectivity of antimicrobial peptide can be modulated with fatty acid tails of variable length. Interaction between membranes and antimicrobial peptides was affected by fatty acid conjugation. At concentrations above the critical miscelle concentration (CMC), propensity of solution selfassembly hampered binding of the peptide to cell membranes. Overall, fatty acid conjugation has enhanced the activities of antimicrobial peptides, and occasionally it rendered inactive antimicrobial peptides to be bioactive. Antimicrobial peptides can not only be used as medicine but also as food additives.

  7. Autophagic machinery activated by dengue virus enhances virus replication

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, Y.-R.; Lei, H.-Y.; Liu, M.-T.; Wang, J.-R.; Chen, S.-H.; Jiang-Shieh, Y.-F.; Lin, Y.-S.; Yeh, T.-M.; Liu, C.-C.; Liu, H.-S.

    2008-05-10

    Autophagy is a cellular response against stresses which include the infection of viruses and bacteria. We unravel that Dengue virus-2 (DV2) can trigger autophagic process in various infected cell lines demonstrated by GFP-LC3 dot formation and increased LC3-II formation. Autophagosome formation was also observed under the transmission electron microscope. DV2-induced autophagy further enhances the titers of extracellular and intracellular viruses indicating that autophagy can promote viral replication in the infected cells. Moreover, our data show that ATG5 protein is required to execute DV2-induced autophagy. All together, we are the first to demonstrate that DV can activate autophagic machinery that is favorable for viral replication.

  8. Active Tailoring of Lift Distribution to Enhance Cruise Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Flamm, Jeffrey D. (Technical Monitor); Pfeiffer, Neal J.; Christians, Joel G.

    2005-01-01

    During Phase I of this project, Raytheon Aircraft Company (RAC) has analytically and experimentally evaluated key components of a system that could be implemented for active tailoring of wing lift distribution using low-drag, trailing-edge modifications. Simple systems such as those studied by RAC could be used to enhance the cruise performance of a business jet configuration over a range of typical flight conditions. The trailing-edge modifications focus on simple, deployable mechanisms comprised of extendable small flap panels over portions of the span that could be used to subtly but positively optimize the lift and drag characteristics. The report includes results from low speed wind tunnel testing of the trailing-edge devices, descriptions of potential mechanisms for automation, and an assessment of the technology.

  9. Enhanced Efflux Activity Facilitates Drug Tolerance in Dormant Bacterial Cells.

    PubMed

    Pu, Yingying; Zhao, Zhilun; Li, Yingxing; Zou, Jin; Ma, Qi; Zhao, Yanna; Ke, Yuehua; Zhu, Yun; Chen, Huiyi; Baker, Matthew A B; Ge, Hao; Sun, Yujie; Xie, Xiaoliang Sunney; Bai, Fan

    2016-04-21

    Natural variations in gene expression provide a mechanism for multiple phenotypes to arise in an isogenic bacterial population. In particular, a sub-group termed persisters show high tolerance to antibiotics. Previously, their formation has been attributed to cell dormancy. Here we demonstrate that bacterial persisters, under β-lactam antibiotic treatment, show less cytoplasmic drug accumulation as a result of enhanced efflux activity. Consistently, a number of multi-drug efflux genes, particularly the central component TolC, show higher expression in persisters. Time-lapse imaging and mutagenesis studies further establish a positive correlation between tolC expression and bacterial persistence. The key role of efflux systems, among multiple biological pathways involved in persister formation, indicates that persisters implement a positive defense against antibiotics prior to a passive defense via dormancy. Finally, efflux inhibitors and antibiotics together effectively attenuate persister formation, suggesting a combination strategy to target drug tolerance.

  10. Enhanced Efflux Activity Facilitates Drug Tolerance in Dormant Bacterial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Pu, Yingying; Zhao, Zhilun; Li, Yingxing; Zou, Jin; Ma, Qi; Zhao, Yanna; Ke, Yuehua; Zhu, Yun; Chen, Huiyi; Baker, Matthew A.B.; Ge, Hao; Sun, Yujie; Xie, Xiaoliang Sunney; Bai, Fan

    2016-01-01

    Summary Natural variations in gene expression provide a mechanism for multiple phenotypes to arise in an isogenic bacterial population. In particular, a sub-group termed persisters show high tolerance to antibiotics. Previously, their formation has been attributed to cell dormancy. Here we demonstrate that bacterial persisters, under β-lactam antibiotic treatment, show less cytoplasmic drug accumulation as a result of enhanced efflux activity. Consistently, a number of multi-drug efflux genes, particularly the central component TolC, show higher expression in persisters. Time-lapse imaging and mutagenesis studies further establish a positive correlation between tolC expression and bacterial persistence. The key role of efflux systems, among multiple biological pathways involved in persister formation, indicates that persisters implement a positive defense against antibiotics prior to a passive defense via dormancy. Finally, efflux inhibitors and antibiotics together effectively attenuate persister formation, suggesting a combination strategy to target drug tolerance. PMID:27105118

  11. Ultrasound extraction of polysaccharides from mulberry leaves and their effect on enhancing antioxidant activity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dong-Yang; Wan, Yi; Xu, Jian-Yi; Wu, Guo-Hua; Li, Long; Yao, Xiao-Hui

    2016-02-10

    A Box-Behnken design (BBD) was applied to optimize the ultrasound-assisted extraction of polysaccharides from mulberry leaves. Under the optimum conditions of an extraction temperature of 57 °C, an extraction time of 80 min and a liquid/solid ratio of 53 mL/g, the mulberry leaf polysaccharide (MLP) yield was 6.92 ± 0.29%. Then, three fractions of MLPs were obtained by deproteinization, dialysis and decolorization. The carbohydrate content, FT-IR spectrum and monosaccharide composition of the MLPs were also investigated. The antioxidant activities of the three fractions were compared, and the results indicated that the antioxidant activities decreased with the increasing MLP purity. Therefore, highly concentrated MLPs were shown to have very little antioxidant activity. After quercetin (10 μg/mL) was added, the antioxidant activities were improved significantly. This result showed that MLPs and quercetin have a synergistic effect on the antioxidant activity. Although the MLPs have very little antioxidant activity alone, they greatly enhance the antioxidant activity of flavonoids. Thus, MLPs can be used as an antioxidant activity enhancer in the food industry.

  12. Ultrasound extraction of polysaccharides from mulberry leaves and their effect on enhancing antioxidant activity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dong-Yang; Wan, Yi; Xu, Jian-Yi; Wu, Guo-Hua; Li, Long; Yao, Xiao-Hui

    2016-02-10

    A Box-Behnken design (BBD) was applied to optimize the ultrasound-assisted extraction of polysaccharides from mulberry leaves. Under the optimum conditions of an extraction temperature of 57 °C, an extraction time of 80 min and a liquid/solid ratio of 53 mL/g, the mulberry leaf polysaccharide (MLP) yield was 6.92 ± 0.29%. Then, three fractions of MLPs were obtained by deproteinization, dialysis and decolorization. The carbohydrate content, FT-IR spectrum and monosaccharide composition of the MLPs were also investigated. The antioxidant activities of the three fractions were compared, and the results indicated that the antioxidant activities decreased with the increasing MLP purity. Therefore, highly concentrated MLPs were shown to have very little antioxidant activity. After quercetin (10 μg/mL) was added, the antioxidant activities were improved significantly. This result showed that MLPs and quercetin have a synergistic effect on the antioxidant activity. Although the MLPs have very little antioxidant activity alone, they greatly enhance the antioxidant activity of flavonoids. Thus, MLPs can be used as an antioxidant activity enhancer in the food industry. PMID:26686153

  13. Shh and ZRS enhancer colocalisation is specific to the zone of polarising activity.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Iain; Lettice, Laura A; Hill, Robert E; Bickmore, Wendy A

    2016-08-15

    Limb-specific Shh expression is regulated by the (∼1 Mb distant) ZRS enhancer. In the mouse, limb bud-restricted spatiotemporal Shh expression occurs from ∼E10 to E11.5 at the distal posterior margin and is essential for correct autopod formation. Here, we have analysed the higher-order chromatin conformation of Shh in expressing and non-expressing tissues, both by fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) and by chromosome conformation capture (5C). Conventional and super-resolution light microscopy identified significantly elevated frequencies of Shh/ZRS colocalisation only in the Shh-expressing regions of the limb bud, in a conformation consistent with enhancer-promoter loop formation. However, in all tissues and at all developmental stages analysed, Shh-ZRS spatial distances were still consistently shorter than those to a neural enhancer located between Shh and ZRS in the genome. 5C identified a topologically associating domain (TAD) over the Shh/ZRS genomic region and enriched interactions between Shh and ZRS throughout E11.5 embryos. Shh/ZRS colocalisation, therefore, correlates with the spatiotemporal domain of limb bud-specific Shh expression, but close Shh and ZRS proximity in the nucleus occurs regardless of whether the gene or enhancer is active. We suggest that this constrained chromatin configuration optimises the opportunity for the active enhancer to locate and instigate the expression of Shh.

  14. Pdx-1 is required for activation in vivo from a duodenum-specific enhancer.

    PubMed

    Dusing, M R; Florence, E A; Wiginton, D A

    2001-04-27

    The purine metabolic gene adenosine deaminase (ADA) is expressed along a defined spatiotemporal pattern in the developing mammalian small intestine, where high-level expression is limited to the villous epithelium of the duodenum. This activation is observed in rodents as the intestine completes the final maturation resulting in adult crypt-villus structures at 2-3 weeks postpartum. A regulatory module responsible for this pattern of expression has been identified in the second intron of the human ADA gene. Of the multiple duodenal proteins that can interact with this small duodenal enhancer region, the studies contained in this work describe the identification of five of these proteins as the dispersed homeobox protein PDX-1. This transcription factor exhibits a profile of expression in the small intestine similar to that observed for ADA, making it an ideal candidate factor for the duodenum-specific ADA enhancer. Loss of PDX-1 binding, via a PDX-1 mutated enhancer transgenic construction, resulted in complete loss of high-level activation in the duodenum, demonstrating the absolute requirement for this factor in vivo. However, co-transfection experiments suggest that other proteins that bind the enhancer are also required for enhancer function because PDX-1 alone was incapable of significant transactivation.

  15. Shh and ZRS enhancer colocalisation is specific to the zone of polarising activity

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Iain; Lettice, Laura A.; Hill, Robert E.

    2016-01-01

    Limb-specific Shh expression is regulated by the (∼1 Mb distant) ZRS enhancer. In the mouse, limb bud-restricted spatiotemporal Shh expression occurs from ∼E10 to E11.5 at the distal posterior margin and is essential for correct autopod formation. Here, we have analysed the higher-order chromatin conformation of Shh in expressing and non-expressing tissues, both by fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) and by chromosome conformation capture (5C). Conventional and super-resolution light microscopy identified significantly elevated frequencies of Shh/ZRS colocalisation only in the Shh-expressing regions of the limb bud, in a conformation consistent with enhancer-promoter loop formation. However, in all tissues and at all developmental stages analysed, Shh-ZRS spatial distances were still consistently shorter than those to a neural enhancer located between Shh and ZRS in the genome. 5C identified a topologically associating domain (TAD) over the Shh/ZRS genomic region and enriched interactions between Shh and ZRS throughout E11.5 embryos. Shh/ZRS colocalisation, therefore, correlates with the spatiotemporal domain of limb bud-specific Shh expression, but close Shh and ZRS proximity in the nucleus occurs regardless of whether the gene or enhancer is active. We suggest that this constrained chromatin configuration optimises the opportunity for the active enhancer to locate and instigate the expression of Shh. PMID:27402708

  16. Dengue virus infection-enhancing antibody activities against Indonesian strains in inhabitants of central Thailand.

    PubMed

    Yamanaka, Atsushi; Oddgun, Duangjai; Chantawat, Nantarat; Okabayashi, Tamaki; Ramasoota, Pongrama; Churrotin, Siti; Kotaki, Tomohiro; Kameoka, Masanori; Soegijanto, Soegeng; Konishi, Eiji

    2016-04-01

    Dengue virus (DENV) infection-enhancing antibodies are a hypothetic factor to increase the dengue disease severity. In this study, we investigated the enhancing antibodies against Indonesian strains of DENV-1-4 in 50 healthy inhabitants of central Thailand (Bangkok and Uthai Thani). Indonesia and Thailand have seen the highest dengue incidence in Southeast Asia. The infection history of each subject was estimated by comparing his/her neutralizing antibody titers against prototype DENV-1-4 strains. To resolve the difficulty in obtaining foreign live viruses for use as assay antigens, we used a recombinant system to prepare single-round infectious dengue viral particles based on viral sequence information. Irrespective of the previously infecting serotype(s), most serum samples showed significantly higher enhancement titers against Indonesian DENV-2 strains than against Thai DENV-2 strains, whereas the opposite effect was observed for the DENV-3 strains. Equivalent enhancing activities were observed against both DENV-1 and DENV-4. These results suggest that the genotype has an impact on enhancing antibody activities against DENV-2 and DENV-3, because the predominant circulating genotypes of each serotype differ between Indonesia and Thailand.

  17. [Dextromethorphan enhances analgesic activity of propacetamol--experimental study].

    PubMed

    Dobrogowski, Jan; Wordliczek, Jerzy; Przewłocka, Barbara

    2005-01-01

    While many pre-clinical and clinical studies have suggested that the addition of N-methyl-d--aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonists, such as dextromethorphan, to opioid analgesics, such as morphine may enhance the analgesic effects. The aim of the study was to assess the effect of non-competitive NMDA antagonists and paracetamol (propacetamol) on pain threshold and analgesic potency of this drugs and their combinations in formalin model for pain in rats. Intraperitoneal administration of paracetamol only in doses of 100 g/kg or higher resulted in increase of pain threshold in tail flick and paw pressure tests. The results of our study suggest that there was no significant difference in pain threshold between separate administration of dextromethorphan and in combination with paracetamol. In a formalin model for pain we have shown that paracetamol in non-analgesic doses (10 mg/kg) administered in combination with dextrometorphan, ketamine and mamantine was more effective than those drugs given separately but the best analgesic effect was obtained when combination of paracetamol and dextromethorphan was applied. The addition of higher doses of these combined drugs, that is paracetamol and all three NMDA antagonists did not result in enhancement of dose-dependant analgesia. In conclusion it should be stated that NMDA antagonists improve analgesic effect of paracetamol in the formalin model for pain. although only to a limited extend. PMID:17037292

  18. Latent myostatin has significant activity and this activity is controlled more efficiently by WFIKKN1 than by WFIKKN2

    PubMed Central

    Szláma, György; Trexler, Mária; Patthy, László

    2013-01-01

    Myostatin, a negative regulator of skeletal muscle growth, is produced from myostatin precursor by multiple steps of proteolytic processing. After cleavage by a furin-type protease, the propeptide and growth factor domains remain associated, forming a noncovalent complex, the latent myostatin complex. Mature myostatin is liberated from latent myostatin by bone morphogenetic protein 1/tolloid proteases. Here, we show that, in reporter assays, latent myostatin preparations have significant myostatin activity, as the noncovalent complex dissociates at an appreciable rate, and both mature and semilatent myostatin (a complex in which the dimeric growth factor domain interacts with only one molecule of myostatin propeptide) bind to myostatin receptor. The interaction of myostatin receptor with semilatent myostatin is efficiently blocked by WAP, Kazal, immunoglobulin, Kunitz and NTR domain-containing protein 1 or growth and differentiation factor-associated serum protein 2 (WFIKKN1), a large extracellular multidomain protein that binds both mature myostatin and myostatin propeptide [Kondás et al. (2008) J Biol Chem 283, 23677–23684]. Interestingly, the paralogous protein WAP, Kazal, immunoglobulin, Kunitz and NTR domain-containing protein 2 or growth and differentiation factor-associated serum protein 1 (WFIKKN2) was less efficient than WFIKKN1 as an antagonist of the interactions of myostatin receptor with semilatent myostatin. Our studies have shown that this difference is attributable to the fact that only WFIKKN1 has affinity for the propeptide domain, and this interaction increases its potency in suppressing the receptor-binding activity of semilatent myostatin. As the interaction of WFIKKN1 with various forms of myostatin permits tighter control of myostatin activity until myostatin is liberated from latent myostatin by bone morphogenetic protein 1/tolloid proteases, WFIKKN1 may have greater potential as an antimyostatic agent than WFIKKN2

  19. Enhancement of oxygen reduction reaction activities by Pt nanoclusters decorated on ordered mesoporous porphyrinic carbons

    DOE PAGES

    Sun-Mi Hwang; Choi, YongMan; Kim, Min Gyu; Sohn, Young-Jun; Cheon, Jae Yeong; Joo, Sang Hoon; Yim, Sung-Dae; Kuttiyiel, Kurian A.; Sasaki, Kotaro; Adzic, Radoslav R.; et al

    2016-03-08

    The high cost of Pt-based membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs) is a critical hurdle for the commercialization of polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFCs). Recently, non-precious metal-based catalysts (NPMCs) have demonstrated much enhanced activity but their oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) activity is still inferior to that of Pt-based catalysts resulting in a much thicker electrode in the MEA. For the reduction of mass transport and ohmic overpotential we adopted a new concept of catalyst that combines an ultra-low amount of Pt nanoclusters with metal–nitrogen (M–Nx) doped ordered mesoporous porphyrinic carbon (FeCo–OMPC(L)). The 5 wt% Pt/FeCo–OMPC(L) showed a 2-fold enhancement in activities comparedmore » to a higher loading of Pt. Our experimental results supported by first-principles calculations indicate that a trace amount of Pt nanoclusters on FeCo–OMPC(L) significantly enhances the ORR activity due to their electronic effect as well as geometric effect from the reduced active sites. Finally, in terms of fuel cell commercialization, this class of catalysts is a promising candidate due to the limited use of Pt in the MEA.« less

  20. Antiproliferative effects of anastrozole on MCF-7 human breast cancer cells in vitro are significantly enhanced by combined treatment with testosterone undecanoate.

    PubMed

    Chen, Rong; Cui, Junwei; Wang, Qinqin; Li, Peng; Liu, Xiaoling; Hu, Hui; Wei, Wei

    2015-07-01

    The present study aimed to assess the effects of aromatase inhibitor anastrozole and testosterone undecanoate, separately and in combination, on proliferation and apoptosis in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells cultured in vitro. The effects of various concentrations of these drugs on the proliferation of MCF-7 cells were evaluated by CCK8 assay, the levels of cell apoptosis were evaluated by flow cytometry with Annexin-V/propidium iodide staining and androgen receptor (AR) protein expression was determined by western blot analysis. The results of the CCK8 assay indicated that greater antiproliferative activity was detected in the MCF-7 cells in the combined treatment groups, compared with those treated with anastrozole or testosterone undecanoate alone. Flow cytometric analysis of apoptosis revealed that treatment with a combination of the two drugs generated a higher percentage of apoptotic cells, particularly when the two drugs were applied for 48 h, compared with single drug treatment. Western blot analysis revealed a significant decrease in AR protein expression in the combined treatment groups compared with MCF7 cells treated with single drugs. The results of the present study provided evidence supporting the potential of a combination of anastrozole and testosterone undecanoate as a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of breast cancer. Furthermore, it was demonstrated that the antiproliferative effects of anastrozole were significantly enhanced by combined treatment with testosterone undecanoate via the AR signaling pathway.

  1. Hydrogenase activity in aged, nonviable Desulfovibrio vulgaris cultures and its significance in anaerobic biocorrosion.

    PubMed

    Chatelus, C; Carrier, P; Saignes, P; Libert, M F; Berlier, Y; Lespinat, P A; Fauque, G; Legall, J

    1987-07-01

    Batch cultures of Desulfovibrio vulgaris stored at 32 degrees C for 10 months have been found to retain 50% of the hydrogenase activity of a 1-day culture. The hydrogenase found in old cultures needs reducing conditions for its activation. Viable cell counts are negative after 6 months, showing that the hydrogenase activity does not depend on the presence of viable cells. These observations are of importance in the understanding of anaerobic biocorrosion of metals caused by depolarization phenomena.

  2. Enhanced capacitive properties of commercial activated carbon by re-activation in molten carbonates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Beihu; Xiao, Zuoan; Zhu, Hua; Xiao, Wei; Wu, Wenlong; Wang, Dihua

    2015-12-01

    Simple, affordable and green methods to improve capacitive properties of commercial activated carbon (AC) are intriguing since ACs possess a predominant role in the commercial supercapacitor market. Herein, we report a green reactivation of commercial ACs by soaking ACs in molten Na2CO3-K2CO3 (equal in mass ratios) at 850 °C combining the merits of both physical and chemical activation strategies. The mechanism of molten carbonate treatment and structure-capacitive activity correlations of the ACs are rationalized. Characterizations show that the molten carbonate treatment increases the electrical conductivity of AC without compromising its porosity and wettability of electrolytes. Electrochemical tests show the treated AC exhibited higher specific capacitance, enhanced high-rate capability and excellent cycle performance, promising its practical application in supercapacitors. The present study confirms that the molten carbonate reactivation is a green and effective method to enhance capacitive properties of ACs.

  3. Enhanced Estrogenic Activity of Soybean Isoflavones by Coadministration of Liuwei Dihuang Pills in Ovariectomized Rats.

    PubMed

    Xie, Baogang; Zhang, Shuohua; Liu, Jie; Zhan, Xuejun; Xie, Daze; Zhang, Zhirong

    2015-07-01

    Soybean isoflavones are beneficial for treating hormone-related diseases. Simultaneous consumption of soybean isoflavones and Liuwei Dihuang pills (LWPs) is effective for treating perimenopausal period syndrome. However, why the combination of isoflavones and LWPs is more effective than ingestion of each component alone remains unknown. Here, we show that enhanced estrogenic activities would appear when the ovariectomized rats were fed with a soybean diet in combination of LWPs treatment. Our further studies explored enhancements of Lactobacillus (19-fold) and Bifidobacterium (12-fold) contents in the intestine of rat and 1.84-fold higher intestinal β-glucosidase activity in LWPs treatment group compared with the control group. As a result, steady-state concentrations of genistein (1.20-fold), daidzein (1.36-fold), and equol (1.43-fold) in serum were significantly elevated in the combination group compared with the soybean alone group. The results present the first evidence of the mechanism of enhanced estrogenic activity of dietary soybean isoflavones in combination with LWPs. Our study indicates that alterations of gut bacteria after LWPs treatment play a key role in the enhanced estrogenic effect of dietary soybean, suggesting a direct relationship between dietary soybean, LWPs, and gut flora. PMID:25826579

  4. Significance of active ion transport in transalveolar water absorption: a study on isolated rat lung.

    PubMed

    Basset, G; Crone, C; Saumon, G

    1987-03-01

    1. Experiments were performed on isolated rat lungs perfused with Ringer solutions containing red cells. The goal was to clarify the role of active transport of Na+ for the absorption of fluid across the alveolar membrane, and to characterize active and passive pathways. 2. Partially degassed lungs were filled with 5 ml of an isotonic Ringer solution containing 125I-labelled albumin in order to calculate the fluid movement, and 22Na+ or 36Cl- for measurement of ion fluxes. Passive non-electrolyte permeability was determined in all experiments using [3H]mannitol. 3. The average rate of fluid absorption in phosphate-buffered instillates was 134 nl/s (S.E., 18.5; n = 14). With ouabain (10(-4) M) in the perfusate the fluid absorption rate fell to 57 nl/s (S.E., 8.2; n = 18). Amiloride (10(-3)-10(-4) M) in the instillate reduced the absorption to 75 nl/s (S.E., 8.6; n = 16). These results show that fluid absorption depends on transcellular transport of Na+ and that alveolar epithelial cells have a Na+ entry system in the luminal membrane and a Na+-K+ pump in the abluminal membrane. 4. The transcellular ion transport operates in parallel with a paracellular, passive leak that allows mannitol to pass with a permeability surface area product of 1.2 X 10(-4) ml/s, corresponding to a permeability coefficient of 2.4 X 10(-8) cm/s, assuming an alveolar surface area of 5000 cm2. 5. The passive fluxes of Na+ were 9.4 pmol/(cm2s) (S.E., 1.3; n = 25) in the direction from alveoli to perfusate and 8.0 pmol/(cm2s) (S.E., 0.86; n = 6) from perfusate to plasma. The passive fluxes of Cl- in the two directions were not significantly different either. Thus the transalveolar electrical potential difference is too small to affect ion movements measurably. 6. The passive permeability to Na+ was 6.7 X 10(-8) cm/s and to Cl- was 10.2 X 10(-8) cm/s (alveolar surface area assumed to be 5000 cm2). The ratio of the permeabilities is close to the ratio of the diffusion coefficients in free

  5. A significant increase of RNAi efficiency in human cells by the CMV enhancer with a tRNAlys promoter.

    PubMed

    Weiwei, Ma; Zhenhua, Xie; Feng, Liu; Hang, Ning; Yuyang, Jiang

    2009-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) is the process of mRNA degradation induced by double-stranded RNA in a sequence-specific manner. Different types of promoters, such as U6, H1, tRNA, and CMV, have been used to control the inhibitory effect of RNAi expression vectors. In the present study, we constructed two shRNA expression vectors, respectively, controlled by tRNA(lys) and CMV enhancer-tRNA(lys) promoters. Compared to the vectors with tRNA(lys) or U6 promoter, the vector with a CMV enhancer-tRNA(lys) promoter silenced pokemon more efficiently on both the mRNA and the protein levels. Meanwhile, the silencing of pokemon inhibited the proliferation of MCF7 cells, but the induction of apoptosis of MCF7 cells was not observed. We conclude that the CMV enhancer-tRNA(lys) promoter may be a powerful tool in driving intracellular expression of shRNA which can efficiently silence targeted gene. PMID:19859553

  6. A significant increase of RNAi efficiency in human cells by the CMV enhancer with a tRNAlys promoter.

    PubMed

    Weiwei, Ma; Zhenhua, Xie; Feng, Liu; Hang, Ning; Yuyang, Jiang

    2009-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) is the process of mRNA degradation induced by double-stranded RNA in a sequence-specific manner. Different types of promoters, such as U6, H1, tRNA, and CMV, have been used to control the inhibitory effect of RNAi expression vectors. In the present study, we constructed two shRNA expression vectors, respectively, controlled by tRNA(lys) and CMV enhancer-tRNA(lys) promoters. Compared to the vectors with tRNA(lys) or U6 promoter, the vector with a CMV enhancer-tRNA(lys) promoter silenced pokemon more efficiently on both the mRNA and the protein levels. Meanwhile, the silencing of pokemon inhibited the proliferation of MCF7 cells, but the induction of apoptosis of MCF7 cells was not observed. We conclude that the CMV enhancer-tRNA(lys) promoter may be a powerful tool in driving intracellular expression of shRNA which can efficiently silence targeted gene.

  7. Optimization of selenylation modification for garlic polysaccharide based on immune-enhancing activity.

    PubMed

    Gao, Zhenzhen; Chen, Jin; Qiu, Shulei; Li, Youying; Wang, Deyun; Liu, Cui; Li, Xiuping; Hou, Ranran; Yue, Chanjuan; Liu, Jie; Li, Hongquan; Hu, Yuanliang

    2016-01-20

    Garlic polysaccharide (GPS) was modified in selenylation respectively by nitric acid-sodium selenite (NA-SS), glacial acetic acid-selenous acid (GA-SA), glacial acetic acid-sodium selenite (GA-SS) and selenium oxychloride (SOC) methods each under nine modification conditions of L9(3(4)) orthogonal design and each to obtain nine selenizing GPSs (sGPSs). Their structures were identified, yields and selenium contents were determined, selenium yields were calculated, and the immune-enhancing activities of four sGPSs with higher selenium yields were compared taking unmodified GPS as control. The results showed that among four methods the selenylation efficiency of NA-SS method were the highest, the activity of sGPS5 was the strongest and significantly stronger than that of unmodified GPS. This indicates that selenylation modification can significantly enhance the immune-enhancing activity of GPS, NA-SS method is the best method and the optimal conditions are 0.8:1 weight ratio of sodium selenite to GPS, reaction temperature of 70 °C and reaction time of 10h.

  8. Optimization of selenylation modification for garlic polysaccharide based on immune-enhancing activity.

    PubMed

    Gao, Zhenzhen; Chen, Jin; Qiu, Shulei; Li, Youying; Wang, Deyun; Liu, Cui; Li, Xiuping; Hou, Ranran; Yue, Chanjuan; Liu, Jie; Li, Hongquan; Hu, Yuanliang

    2016-01-20

    Garlic polysaccharide (GPS) was modified in selenylation respectively by nitric acid-sodium selenite (NA-SS), glacial acetic acid-selenous acid (GA-SA), glacial acetic acid-sodium selenite (GA-SS) and selenium oxychloride (SOC) methods each under nine modification conditions of L9(3(4)) orthogonal design and each to obtain nine selenizing GPSs (sGPSs). Their structures were identified, yields and selenium contents were determined, selenium yields were calculated, and the immune-enhancing activities of four sGPSs with higher selenium yields were compared taking unmodified GPS as control. The results showed that among four methods the selenylation efficiency of NA-SS method were the highest, the activity of sGPS5 was the strongest and significantly stronger than that of unmodified GPS. This indicates that selenylation modification can significantly enhance the immune-enhancing activity of GPS, NA-SS method is the best method and the optimal conditions are 0.8:1 weight ratio of sodium selenite to GPS, reaction temperature of 70 °C and reaction time of 10h. PMID:26572388

  9. Active Transport Can Greatly Enhance Cdc20:Mad2 Formation

    PubMed Central

    Ibrahim, Bashar; Henze, Richard

    2014-01-01

    To guarantee genomic integrity and viability, the cell must ensure proper distribution of the replicated chromosomes among the two daughter cells in mitosis. The mitotic spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) is a central regulatory mechanism to achieve this goal. A dysfunction of this checkpoint may lead to aneuploidy and likely contributes to the development of cancer. Kinetochores of unattached or misaligned chromosomes are thought to generate a diffusible “wait-anaphase” signal, which is the basis for downstream events to inhibit the anaphase promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C). The rate of Cdc20:C-Mad2 complex formation at the kinetochore is a key regulatory factor in the context of APC/C inhibition. Computer simulations of a quantitative SAC model show that the formation of Cdc20:C-Mad2 is too slow for checkpoint maintenance when cytosolic O-Mad2 has to encounter kinetochores by diffusion alone. Here, we show that an active transport of O-Mad2 towards the spindle mid-zone increases the efficiency of Mad2-activation. Our in-silico data indicate that this mechanism can greatly enhance the formation of Cdc20:Mad2 and furthermore gives an explanation on how the “wait-anaphase” signal can dissolve abruptly within a short time. Our results help to understand parts of the SAC mechanism that remain unclear. PMID:25338047

  10. Active transport can greatly enhance Cdc20:Mad2 formation.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Bashar; Henze, Richard

    2014-01-01

    To guarantee genomic integrity and viability, the cell must ensure proper distribution of the replicated chromosomes among the two daughter cells in mitosis.The mitotic spindle assembly checkpoint (SAC) is a central regulatory mechanism to achieve this goal. A dysfunction of this checkpoint may lead to aneuploidy and likely contributes to the development of cancer. Kinetochores of unattached or misaligned chromosomes are thought to generate a diffusible ''wait-anaphase'' signal, which is the basis for downstream events to inhibit the anaphase promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C). The rate of Cdc20:C-Mad2 complex formation at the kinetochore is a key regulatory factor in the context of APC/C inhibition. Computer simulations of a quantitative SAC model show that the formation of Cdc20:C-Mad2 is too slow for checkpoint maintenance when cytosolic O-Mad2 has to encounter kinetochores by diffusion alone. Here, we show that an active transport of O-Mad2 towards the spindle mid-zone increases the efficiency of Mad2-activation. Our data indicate that this mechanism can greatly enhance the formation of Cdc20:Mad2 and furthermore gives an explanation on how the ''wait-anaphase'' signal can dissolve abruptly within a short time. Our results help to understand parts of the SAC mechanism that remain unclear.

  11. The Significance of Turning Passive Into Active in Control Mastery Theory

    PubMed Central

    FOREMAN, STEVEN A.

    1996-01-01

    Turning passive into active was first described by Freud but was later given expanded importance by Weiss. This new conceptualization of turning passive into active as an interpersonal communication and test has made a major contribution to the clinical treatment of difficult patients. This article reviews "control mastery" theory and puts its notion of passive-into-active testing into perspective with regard to Freud’s original conception as well as other conceptions, such as identification with the aggressor and projective identification. Formulation and the treatment of patients are illustrated with clinical examples. PMID:22700271

  12. Enhancement in visible light photocatalytic activity of BiFeO3 photocatalysts by Pd cocatalyst

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Sen; Chen, Da; Niu, Feng; Zhang, Ning; Qin, Laishun; Huang, Yuexiang

    2016-09-01

    In this work, Pd cocatalysts were successfully loaded onto the surface of hydrothermally synthesized BiFeO3 (BFO) particles by an impregnation process. It was found that Pd nanoparticles with an average size of ca. 5 nm were well dispersed on the surface of BFO particles, and an Schottky heterostructure at the interface between Pd and BFO was thus constructed. The photocatalytic activities of Pd cocatalyst-loaded BFO photocatalysts were significantly enhanced when compared to pure BFO. The improved photocatalytic activity of BFO particles by loading Pd cocatalyst could mainly be ascribed to the enhanced separation efficiency of photogenerated electron-hole pairs induced by the Schottky heterostructure between Pd and BFO, which was confirmed by photoluminescence emission spectra, photocurrent action spectra and electrochemical impedance spectra.

  13. Role of drop distortion in enhancing the lightning activity in clouds formed over cities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhalwankar, Rohini; Kamra, A. K.

    2013-03-01

    Atmospheric pollutants can modify the electrification and lightning activity in thunderclouds. Laboratory simulation experiments show that distortion of water drops is more when drops are formed from water polluted with Sulfate/Nitrate salts than that from distilled water and the difference in distortions is more in a higher electric field. Further, the polluted water drops falling in a horizontal electric field can trigger a discharge on their surface and the discharge can propagate as a streamer in lower electric fields as compared to that from distilled water drops. The difference in electrical conductivities of polluted and unpolluted water drops is most likely the key factor for manifestation of these differences. It is proposed that the enhanced distortion of polluted drops coupled with the change in their characteristics to trigger and propagate a discharge in lower electric fields may significantly contribute to the enhancement of lightning activity observed in clouds formed over big cities.

  14. Contributors to Enhanced CO2 Electroreduction Activity and Stability in a Nanostructured Au Electrocatalyst.

    PubMed

    Kim, Haeri; Jeon, Hyo Sang; Jee, Michael Shincheon; Nursanto, Eduardus Budi; Singh, Jitendra Pal; Chae, Keunhwa; Hwang, Yun Jeong; Min, Byoung Koun

    2016-08-23

    The formation of a nanostructure is a popular strategy for catalyst applications because it can generate new surfaces that can significantly improve the catalytic activity and durability of the catalysts. However, the increase in the surface area resulting from nanostructuring does not fully explain the substantial improvement in the catalytic properties of the CO2 electroreduction reaction, and the underlying mechanisms have not yet been fully understood. Here, based on a combination of extended X-ray absorption fine structure analysis, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and Kelvin probe force microscopy, we observed a contracted Au-Au bond length and low work function with the nanostructured Au surface that had enhanced catalytic activity for electrochemical CO2 reduction. The results may improve the understanding of the enhanced stability of the nanostructured Au electrode based on the resistance of cation adhesion during the CO2 reduction reaction. PMID:27466025

  15. [Activation and inhibitory types of brain neuronal sinchronisation: genesis and functional significance].

    PubMed

    Shul'gina, G I

    2007-01-01

    The generalization of studies of the systemic work of cortical neurons during the information processing initiated in Livanov's laboratory allows us to make the following conclusions in terms of the modem state of the problem. In different brain structures, there is a considerable degree of correlation between neuronal activities and slow potential oscillations. In the state of rest or deep extinction, the synchronization of brain neurons increases by the inhibitory type. In the active state of the brain, the degree of neuronal synchronization increases by the activation type. Both processes are determined by the involvement of the whole brain inhibitory or activation systems, respectively. A relative augmentation of inhibitory processes results in a restriction of information transmission in the cortex and prevents its fixation in memory of the system. A decrease in inhibition facilitates the excitation thransmission in the interconnected brain structures. Synchronous convergence of ordered polse flows ensures the information fixation during learning.

  16. Polyphosphate Kinase from Activated Sludge Performing Enhanced Biological Phosphorus Removal†

    PubMed Central

    McMahon, Katherine D.; Dojka, Michael A.; Pace, Norman R.; Jenkins, David; Keasling, Jay D.

    2002-01-01

    A novel polyphosphate kinase (PPK) was retrieved from an uncultivated organism in activated sludge carrying out enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR). Acetate-fed laboratory-scale sequencing batch reactors were used to maintain sludge with a high phosphorus content (approximately 11% of the biomass). PCR-based clone libraries of small subunit rRNA genes and fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) were used to verify that the sludge was enriched in Rhodocyclus-like β-Proteobacteria known to be associated with sludges carrying out EBPR. These organisms comprised approximately 80% of total bacteria in the sludge, as assessed by FISH. Degenerate PCR primers were designed to retrieve fragments of putative ppk genes from a pure culture of Rhodocyclus tenuis and from organisms in the sludge. Four novel ppk homologs were found in the sludge, and two of these (types I and II) shared a high degree of amino acid similarity with R. tenuis PPK (86 and 87% similarity, respectively). Dot blot analysis of total RNA extracted from sludge demonstrated that the Type I ppk mRNA was present, indicating that this gene is expressed during EBPR. Inverse PCR was used to obtain the full Type I sequence from sludge DNA, and a full-length PPK was cloned, overexpressed, and purified to near homogeneity. The purified PPK has a specific activity comparable to that of other PPKs, has a requirement for Mg2+, and does not appear to operate in reverse. PPK activity was found mainly in the particulate fraction of lysed sludge microorganisms. PMID:12324346

  17. Enhancing Human Spermine Synthase Activity by Engineered Mutations

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhe; Zheng, Yueli; Petukh, Margo; Pegg, Anthony; Ikeguchi, Yoshihiko; Alexov, Emil

    2013-01-01

    Spermine synthase (SMS) is an enzyme which function is to convert spermidine into spermine. It was shown that gene defects resulting in amino acid changes of the wild type SMS cause Snyder-Robinson syndrome, which is a mild-to-moderate mental disability associated with osteoporosis, facial asymmetry, thin habitus, hypotonia, and a nonspecific movement disorder. These disease-causing missense mutations were demonstrated, both in silico and in vitro, to affect the wild type function of SMS by either destabilizing the SMS dimer/monomer or directly affecting the hydrogen bond network of the active site of SMS. In contrast to these studies, here we report an artificial engineering of a more efficient SMS variant by transferring sequence information from another organism. It is confirmed experimentally that the variant, bearing four amino acid substitutions, is catalytically more active than the wild type. The increased functionality is attributed to enhanced monomer stability, lowering the pKa of proton donor catalytic residue, optimized spatial distribution of the electrostatic potential around the SMS with respect to substrates, and increase of the frequency of mechanical vibration of the clefts presumed to be the gates toward the active sites. The study demonstrates that wild type SMS is not particularly evolutionarily optimized with respect to the reaction spermidine → spermine. Having in mind that currently there are no variations (non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism, nsSNP) detected in healthy individuals, it can be speculated that the human SMS function is precisely tuned toward its wild type and any deviation is unwanted and disease-causing. PMID:23468611

  18. Diagnostic significance of the pancreatic displacement with extrapancreatic oval-shaped low activity area on scintigram.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, K; Nakayama, C; Kamoi, I; Matsuura, K

    1977-01-01

    To aid in the differential diagnosis of upper abdominal tumors, pancreatic scintigraphy was performed in 62 cases. The findings were rather characteristic for pancreatic cysts; namely, pancreatic displacement and, adjacently, an oval-shaped activity area whose count was lower than background. Pancreatic displacement was observed with comparatively large retroperitoneal masses. Low activity areas were observed in cystic lesions. Both findings were noted in 7 (54%) of 13 pancreatic cyst cases. Among the 12 cases with these findings, 7 (58%) had pancreatic cysts.

  19. Transport Activity of the Sodium Bicarbonate Cotransporter NBCe1 Is Enhanced by Different Isoforms of Carbonic Anhydrase

    PubMed Central

    Schueler, Christina; Becker, Holger M.; McKenna, Robert; Deitmer, Joachim W.

    2011-01-01

    Transport metabolons have been discussed between carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) and several membrane transporters. We have now studied different CA isoforms, expressed in Xenopus oocytes alone and together with the electrogenic sodium bicarbonate cotransporter 1 (NBCe1), to determine their catalytic activity and their ability to enhance NBCe1 transport activity. pH measurements in intact oocytes indicated similar activity of CAI, CAII and CAIII, while in vitro CAIII had no measurable activity and CAI only 30% of the activity of CAII. All three CA isoforms increased transport activity of NBCe1, as measured by the transport current and the rate of intracellular sodium rise in oocytes. Two CAII mutants, altered in their intramolecular proton pathway, CAII-H64A and CAII-Y7F, showed significant catalytic activity and also enhanced NBCe1 transport activity. The effect of CAI, CAII, and CAII mutants on NBCe1 activity could be reversed by blocking CA activity with ethoxyzolamide (EZA, 10 µM), while the effect of the less EZA-sensitive CAIII was not reversed. Our results indicate that different CA isoforms and mutants, even if they show little enzymatic activity in vitro, may display significant catalytic activity in intact cells, and that the ability of CA to enhance NBCe1 transport appears to depend primarily on its catalytic activity. PMID:22076132

  20. A New Bioinspired Perchlorate Reduction Catalyst with Significantly Enhanced Stability via Rational Tuning of Rhenium Coordination Chemistry and Heterogeneous Reaction Pathway.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinyong; Han, Mengwei; Wu, Dimao; Chen, Xi; Choe, Jong Kwon; Werth, Charles J; Strathmann, Timothy J

    2016-06-01

    Rapid reduction of aqueous ClO4(-) to Cl(-) by H2 has been realized by a heterogeneous Re(hoz)2-Pd/C catalyst integrating Re(O)(hoz)2Cl complex (hoz = oxazolinyl-phenolato bidentate ligand) and Pd nanoparticles on carbon support, but ClOx(-) intermediates formed during reactions with concentrated ClO4(-) promote irreversible Re complex decomposition and catalyst deactivation. The original catalyst design mimics the microbial ClO4(-) reductase, which integrates Mo(MGD)2 complex (MGD = molybdopterin guanine dinucleotide) for oxygen atom transfer (OAT). Perchlorate-reducing microorganisms employ a separate enzyme, chlorite dismutase, to prevent accumulation of the destructive ClO2(-) intermediate. The structural intricacy of MGD ligand and the two-enzyme mechanism for microbial ClO4(-) reduction inspired us to improve catalyst stability by rationally tuning Re ligand structure and adding a ClOx(-) scavenger. Two new Re complexes, Re(O)(htz)2Cl and Re(O)(hoz)(htz)Cl (htz = thiazolinyl-phenolato bidentate ligand), significantly mitigate Re complex decomposition by slightly lowering the OAT activity when immobilized in Pd/C. Further stability enhancement is then obtained by switching the nanoparticles from Pd to Rh, which exhibits high reactivity with ClOx(-) intermediates and thus prevents their deactivating reaction with the Re complex. Compared to Re(hoz)2-Pd/C, the new Re(hoz)(htz)-Rh/C catalyst exhibits similar ClO4(-) reduction activity but superior stability, evidenced by a decrease of Re leaching from 37% to 0.25% and stability of surface Re speciation following the treatment of a concentrated "challenge" solution containing 1000 ppm of ClO4(-). This work demonstrates the pivotal roles of coordination chemistry control and tuning of individual catalyst components for achieving both high activity and stability in environmental catalyst applications.

  1. A New Bioinspired Perchlorate Reduction Catalyst with Significantly Enhanced Stability via Rational Tuning of Rhenium Coordination Chemistry and Heterogeneous Reaction Pathway.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinyong; Han, Mengwei; Wu, Dimao; Chen, Xi; Choe, Jong Kwon; Werth, Charles J; Strathmann, Timothy J

    2016-06-01

    Rapid reduction of aqueous ClO4(-) to Cl(-) by H2 has been realized by a heterogeneous Re(hoz)2-Pd/C catalyst integrating Re(O)(hoz)2Cl complex (hoz = oxazolinyl-phenolato bidentate ligand) and Pd nanoparticles on carbon support, but ClOx(-) intermediates formed during reactions with concentrated ClO4(-) promote irreversible Re complex decomposition and catalyst deactivation. The original catalyst design mimics the microbial ClO4(-) reductase, which integrates Mo(MGD)2 complex (MGD = molybdopterin guanine dinucleotide) for oxygen atom transfer (OAT). Perchlorate-reducing microorganisms employ a separate enzyme, chlorite dismutase, to prevent accumulation of the destructive ClO2(-) intermediate. The structural intricacy of MGD ligand and the two-enzyme mechanism for microbial ClO4(-) reduction inspired us to improve catalyst stability by rationally tuning Re ligand structure and adding a ClOx(-) scavenger. Two new Re complexes, Re(O)(htz)2Cl and Re(O)(hoz)(htz)Cl (htz = thiazolinyl-phenolato bidentate ligand), significantly mitigate Re complex decomposition by slightly lowering the OAT activity when immobilized in Pd/C. Further stability enhancement is then obtained by switching the nanoparticles from Pd to Rh, which exhibits high reactivity with ClOx(-) intermediates and thus prevents their deactivating reaction with the Re complex. Compared to Re(hoz)2-Pd/C, the new Re(hoz)(htz)-Rh/C catalyst exhibits similar ClO4(-) reduction activity but superior stability, evidenced by a decrease of Re leaching from 37% to 0.25% and stability of surface Re speciation following the treatment of a concentrated "challenge" solution containing 1000 ppm of ClO4(-). This work demonstrates the pivotal roles of coordination chemistry control and tuning of individual catalyst components for achieving both high activity and stability in environmental catalyst applications. PMID:27182602

  2. Enhanced Phosphatase Activity Attenuates α-Synucleinopathy in a Mouse Model

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Kang-Woo; Chen, Walter; Junn, Eunsung; Im, Joo-Young; Grosso, Hilary; Sonsalla, Patricia K.; Feng, Xuyan; Ray, Neelanjana; Fernandez, Jose R.; Chao, Yang; Masliah, Eliezer; Voronkov, Michael; Braithwaite, Steven P.; Stock, Jeffry B.; Mouradian, M. Maral

    2016-01-01

    α-Synuclein (α-Syn) is a key protein that accumulates as hyperphosphorylated aggregates in pathologic hallmark features of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other neurodegenerative disorders. Phosphorylation of this protein at serine 129 is believed to promote its aggregation and neurotoxicity suggesting that this post-translational modification could be a therapeutic target. Here, we demonstrate that protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) dephosphorylates α-Syn at serine 129, and that this activity is greatly enhanced by carboxyl methylation of the catalytic C subunit of PP2A. α-Syn transgenic mice raised on a diet supplemented with eicosinoyl-5-hydroxytryptamide (EHT), an agent that enhances PP2A methylation, dramatically reduced both α-Syn phosphorylation at Serine 129 and α-Syn aggregation in the brain. These biochemical changes were associated with enhanced neuronal activity, increased dendritic arborizations, reduced astroglial and microglial activation, as well as improved motor performance. These findings support the notion that serine 129 phosphorylation of α-Syn is of pathogenetic significance, and that promoting PP2A activity is a viable disease modifying therapeutic strategy for α-synucleinopathies such as PD. PMID:21562258

  3. Enhanced muscle activity during lumbar extension exercise with pelvic stabilization.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ho-Seong

    2015-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate whether pelvic stabilization affects multifidus (MF) and iliocostalis lumborum (IL) muscle activities during dynamic extension exercise. Nine males (age, 25.1±6.3 yr; height, 176.6±2.4 cm; body mass, 74.9±6.7 kg) performed an isometric lumbar extension strength test and dynamic exercise in an upright seated position with or without pelvic stabilization. The electromyography and muscle strength of the MF and IL muscles were measured when the subjects performed the isometric lumbar extension strength test at the trunk angle 110°, 146°, and 182°. In addition, the trunk extensor muscle activities were measured using 50% muscle strength of maximum isometric strength during a dynamic trunk extension exercise. The MF and IL muscle activities were significantly higher at 110°, 146°, and 182° with pelvic stabilization than that without pelvic stabilization during the isometric lumbar extension strength test (P<0.05) and the dynamic exercise (P<0.05). These results suggest that the lumbar extension exercise with pelvic stabilization may be more effective for MF and IL muscle activity compared to that without pelvic stabilization.

  4. Enhanced muscle activity during lumbar extension exercise with pelvic stabilization

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Ho-Seong

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate whether pelvic stabilization affects multifidus (MF) and iliocostalis lumborum (IL) muscle activities during dynamic extension exercise. Nine males (age, 25.1±6.3 yr; height, 176.6±2.4 cm; body mass, 74.9±6.7 kg) performed an isometric lumbar extension strength test and dynamic exercise in an upright seated position with or without pelvic stabilization. The electromyography and muscle strength of the MF and IL muscles were measured when the subjects performed the isometric lumbar extension strength test at the trunk angle 110°, 146°, and 182°. In addition, the trunk extensor muscle activities were measured using 50% muscle strength of maximum isometric strength during a dynamic trunk extension exercise. The MF and IL muscle activities were significantly higher at 110°, 146°, and 182° with pelvic stabilization than that without pelvic stabilization during the isometric lumbar extension strength test (P<0.05) and the dynamic exercise (P<0.05). These results suggest that the lumbar extension exercise with pelvic stabilization may be more effective for MF and IL muscle activity compared to that without pelvic stabilization. PMID:26730390

  5. Significant role of climatic trends on hydrothermal activity Coso Hot Springs, California

    SciTech Connect

    Lofgren, B.E. )

    1990-05-01

    The hydrothermal features of Coso Hot Springs have attracted visitors for 130 yr and scientific investigators for two decades. In 1978, anticipating effects of major geothermal developments nearby, the Naval Weapons Center (NWC) initiated a comprehensive monitoring program at a dozen hydrothermal sites in the Coso Hot Springs area. Nine years of monitoring preceded power production in the nearby Coso geothermal field in July 1987. During this period, steam was rising from numerous vents and gently boiling mud pots. Local rainfall caused increased boiling activity in several mud pots, with some overflowing during wet periods. Then in August 1988, a year after geothermal power production began major changes in hot spring activity commenced. Small mud pots and steamers started to grow and coalesce. In March 1989, mud-pot activity became more violent. Many buried wells failed causing surface activity in other areas to diminish. During ensuing months, large mud cones developed and much of the steam and boiling water occurred in a few major pots. Because the abrupt changes in hydrothermal activity followed so closely after nearby geothermal production began, the obvious cause has been attributed to geothermal developments. Studies of NWC baseline monitoring data indicate, however, that no effects of geothermal developments have been felt in the hot springs area. Rainfall and barometric effects account for most of the fluctuations in records of the past decade. Early accounts and field evidence suggest similar changes have occurred in the past.

  6. Synthesis of non-competitive inhibitors of sphingomyelinases with significant activity.

    PubMed

    Yokomatsu, Tsutomu; Murano, Tetsuo; Akiyama, Takeshi; Koizumi, Junichi; Shibuya, Shiroshi; Tsuji, Yoshiaki; Soeda, Shinji; Shimeno, Hiroshi

    2003-01-20

    A series of short-chain analogues of N-palmitoylsphingosine-1-phosphate, modified by replacement of the phosphate and the long alkenyl side chain with hydrolytically stable difluoromethylene phosphonate and phenyl, respectively, were prepared to study the structure-activity relationship for inhibition of sphingomyelinase. The study revealed that inhibition is highly dependent upon the stereochemistry of the asymmetric centers of the acylamino moiety, and resulted in identification of a non-competitive inhibitor with the same level of inhibitory activity of schyphostatin, the most potent of the few known small molecular inhibitors of sphingomyelinase.

  7. Enhanced adsorption of perfluorooctane sulfonate and perfluorooctanoate by bamboo-derived granular activated carbon.

    PubMed

    Deng, Shubo; Nie, Yao; Du, Ziwen; Huang, Qian; Meng, Pingping; Wang, Bin; Huang, Jun; Yu, Gang

    2015-01-23

    A bamboo-derived granular activated carbon with large pores was successfully prepared by KOH activation, and used to remove perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) from aqueous solution. The granular activated carbon prepared at the KOH/C mass ratio of 4 and activation temperature of 900°C had fast and high adsorption for PFOS and PFOA. Their adsorption equilibrium was achieved within 24h, which was attributed to their fast diffusion in the micron-sized pores of activated carbon. This granular activated carbon exhibited the maximum adsorbed amount of 2.32mmol/g for PFOS and 1.15mmol/g for PFOA at pH 5.0, much higher than other granular and powdered activated carbons reported. The activated carbon prepared under the severe activation condition contained many enlarged pores, favorable for the adsorption of PFOS and PFOA. In addition, the spent activated carbon was hardly regenerated in NaOH/NaCl solution, while the regeneration efficiency was significantly enhanced in hot water and methanol/ethanol solution, indicating that hydrophobic interaction was mainly responsible for the adsorption. The regeneration percent was up to 98% using 50% ethanol solution at 45°C. PMID:24721493

  8. p53 Small Molecule Inhibitor Enhances Temozolomide Cytotoxic Activity against Intracranial Glioblastoma Xenografts

    PubMed Central

    Dinca, Eduard B.; Lu, Kan V.; Sarkaria, Jann N.; Pieper, Russell O.; Prados, Michael D.; Haas-Kogan, Daphne A.; VandenBerg, Scott R.; Berger, Mitchel S.; James, C. David

    2010-01-01

    In this study we investigated corresponding precursor and active forms of a p53 small molecule inhibitor for effect on temozolomide (TMZ) anti-tumor activity against glioblastoma (GBM), using both in vitro and in vivo experimental approaches. Results from in vitro cell viability analysis showed that the cytotoxic activity of TMZ was substantially increased when GBMs with wild-type p53 were co-treated with the active form of p53 inhibitor, and this heightened cytotoxic response was accompanied by increased PARP cleavage as well as elevated cellular phospho-H2AX. Analysis of the same series of GBMs, as intracranial xenografts in athymic mice, and administering corresponding p53 inhibitor precursor, that is converted to the active compound in vivo, yielded results consistent with the in vitro analyses: i.e., TMZ + p53 inhibitor precursor co-treatment, of three distinct wild-type p53 GBM xenografts, resulted in significant enhancement of TMZ anti-tumor effect relative to treatment with TMZ alone, as indicated by serial bioluminescence monitoring as well as survival analysis (p < 0.001 for co-treatment survival benefit in each case). Mice receiving intracranial injection with p53 null GBM showed similar survival benefit from TMZ treatment regardless of the presence or absence of p53 inhibitor precursor. In total, our results indicate that the p53 active and precursor inhibitor pair enhance TMZ cytotoxicity in vitro and in vivo, respectively, and do so in a p53-dependent manner. PMID:19074867

  9. Aminoglycosylation Can Enhance the G-Quadruplex Binding Activity of Epigallocatechin

    PubMed Central

    Bai, Li-Ping; Ho, Hing-Man; Ma, Dik-Lung; Yang, Hui; Fu, Wai-Chung; Jiang, Zhi-Hong

    2013-01-01

    With the aim of enhancing G-quadruplex binding activity, two new glucosaminosides (16, 18) of penta-methylated epigallocatechin were synthesized by chemical glycosylation. Subsequent ESI-TOF-MS analysis demonstrated that these two glucosaminoside derivatives exhibit much stronger binding activity to human telomeric DNA and RNA G-quadruplexes than their parent structure (i.e., methylated EGC) (14) as well as natural epigallocatechin (EGC, 6). The DNA G-quadruplex binding activity of 16 and 18 is even more potent than strong G-quadruplex binder quercetin, which has a more planar structure. These two synthetic compounds also showed a higher binding strength to human telomeric RNA G-quadruplex than its DNA counterpart. Analysis of the structure-activity relationship revealed that the more basic compound, 16, has a higher binding capacity with DNA and RNA G-quadruplexes than its N-acetyl derivative, 18, suggesting the importance of the basicity of the aminoglycoside for G-quadruplex binding activity. Molecular docking simulation predicted that the aromatic ring of 16 π-stacks with the aromatic ring of guanine nucleotides, with the glucosamine moiety residing in the groove of G-quadruplex. This research indicates that glycosylation of natural products with aminosugar can significantly enhance their G-quadruplex binding activities, thus is an effective way to generate small molecules targeting G-quadruplexes in nucleic acids. In addition, this is the first report that green tea catechin can bind to nucleic acid G-quadruplex structures. PMID:23335983

  10. Enhancing effect of oxygen radical scavengers on murine macrophage anticryptococcal activity through production of nitric oxide

    PubMed Central

    TOHYAMA, M.; KAWAKAMI, K.; FUTENMA, M.; SAITO, A.

    1996-01-01

    We examined the roles of reactive nitrogen intermediates (RNI) and reactive oxygen intermediates (ROI) in interferon-gamma (IFN-γ)-induced cryptococcostatic activity of murine peritoneal macrophages using NG-monomethyl-L-arginine (L-NMMA), a competitive inhibitor of RNI synthesis, and superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase, oxygen radical scavengers. IFN-γ-activated macrophages produced nitric oxide (NO) in a dose-dependent manner, as measured by increased nitrite concentration in the culture supernatant. IFN-γ also enhanced the suppressive effect on cryptococcal growth in a similar dose-dependent manner. The induction of killing activity and NO production by an optimal dose of IFN-γ (100 U/ml) was virtually suppressed by 500 μM L-NMMA. These results confirmed the importance of the RNI-mediated effector mechanism in anticryptococcal activity of macrophages. SOD and catalase significantly enhanced the cryptococcostatic activity of macrophages induced by a suboptimal dose of IFN-γ (20 U/ml). The augmenting effect of these reagents was mediated by NO, since they potentiated the production of NO by macrophages and their effects were totally blocked by L-NMMA. Our results indicate that the IFN-γ-induced anticryptococcal activity of macrophages is dependent mostly on RNI, and suggest that the ROI system down-regulates the effector mechanism for cryptococcostasis by suppressing the RNI system. PMID:8608643

  11. p53 Small-molecule inhibitor enhances temozolomide cytotoxic activity against intracranial glioblastoma xenografts.

    PubMed

    Dinca, Eduard B; Lu, Kan V; Sarkaria, Jann N; Pieper, Russell O; Prados, Michael D; Haas-Kogan, Daphne A; Vandenberg, Scott R; Berger, Mitchel S; James, C David

    2008-12-15

    In this study, we investigated the precursor and active forms of a p53 small-molecule inhibitor for their effects on temozolomide (TMZ) antitumor activity against glioblastoma (GBM), using both in vitro and in vivo experimental approaches. Results from in vitro cell viability analysis showed that the cytotoxic activity of TMZ was substantially increased when p53 wild-type (p53(wt)) GBMs were cotreated with the active form of p53 inhibitor, and this heightened cytotoxic response was accompanied by increased poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase cleavage as well as elevated cellular phospho-H2AX. Analysis of the same series of GBMs, as intracranial xenografts in athymic mice, and administering corresponding p53 inhibitor precursor, which is converted to the active compound in vivo, yielded results consistent with the in vitro analyses: TMZ + p53 inhibitor precursor cotreatment of three distinct p53(wt) GBM xenografts resulted in significant enhancement of TMZ antitumor effect relative to treatment with TMZ alone, as indicated by serial bioluminescence monitoring as well as survival analysis (P < 0.001 for cotreatment survival benefit in each case). Mice receiving intracranial injection with p53(null) GBM showed similar survival benefit from TMZ treatment regardless of the presence or absence of p53 inhibitor precursor. In total, our results indicate that the p53 active and precursor inhibitor pair enhances TMZ cytotoxicity in vitro and in vivo, respectively, and do so in a p53-dependent manner.

  12. The Social and Economic Significance of Recreation Activities in the Marine Environment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ditton, Robert B.

    Although the data obtained by an Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission in 1960 indicated that 44 percent of participants in outdoor recreation prefer water-based activities, the potential demand for recreation within the coastal zone is much greater than that study indicates, because the unfulfilled recreational demands of the urban…

  13. Significantly enhanced impulse breakdown performances of propylene carbonate modified by TiO2 nano-particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hou, Yanpan; Zhang, Zicheng; Zhang, Jiande

    2016-10-01

    Nano-fluids with KH550-grafted TiO2 nano-particles homogenously dispersed into propylene carbonate exhibit substantially enhanced dielectric properties compared with the base liquid. Specifically, the breakdown stability of nano-fluids is dramatically improved for a small high-voltage electrode potential increasing rate, which has a potential to increase the reliability of the pulsed power system. On the other hand, the mean breakdown voltage of nano-fluids is more than 30% larger than that of base liquid when the high-voltage electrode potential increasing rate equals to 6 kV/μs, which will lead to a great increase in energy storage density of the pulsed power system.

  14. Explosives sensing by using electron-rich supramolecular polymers: role of intermolecular hydrogen bonding in significant enhancement of sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Gole, Bappaditya; Song, Wentao; Lackinger, Markus; Mukherjee, Partha Sarathi

    2014-10-13

    We demonstrate here that supramolecular interactions enhance the sensitivity towards detection of electron-deficient nitro-aromatic compounds (NACs) over discrete analogues. NACs are the most commonly used explosive ingredients and are common constituents of many unexploded landmines used during World War II. In this study, we have synthesised a series of pyrene-based polycarboxylic acids along with their corresponding discrete esters. Due to the electron richness and the fluorescent behaviour of the pyrene moiety, all the compounds act as sensors for electron-deficient NACs through a fluorescence quenching mechanism. A Stern-Volmer quenching constant determination revealed that the carboxylic acids are more sensitive than the corresponding esters towards NACs in solution. The high sensitivity of the acids was attributed to supramolecular polymer formation through hydrogen bonding in the case of the acids, and the enhancement mechanism is based on an exciton energy migration upon excitation along the hydrogen-bond backbone. The presence of intermolecular hydrogen bonding in the acids in solution was established by solvent-dependent fluorescence studies and dynamic light scattering (DLS) experiments. In addition, the importance of intermolecular hydrogen bonds in solid-state sensing was further explored by scanning tunnelling microscopy (STM) experiments at the liquid-solid interface, in which structures of self-assembled monolayer of the acids and the corresponding esters were compared. The sensitivity tests revealed that these supramolecular sensors can even detect picric acid and trinitrotoluene in solution at levels as low as parts per trillion (ppt), which is much below the recommended permissible level of these constituents in drinking water. PMID:25187022

  15. Enhancement of antibody-dependent mechanisms of tumor cell lysis by a targeted activator of complement.

    PubMed

    Imai, Masaki; Ohta, Rieko; Varela, Juan C; Song, Hongbin; Tomlinson, Stephen

    2007-10-01

    Complement inhibitors expressed on tumor cells provide a hindrance to the therapeutic efficacy of some monoclonal antibodies (mAb). We investigated a novel strategy to overwhelm complement inhibitor activity and amplify complement activation on tumor cells. The C3-binding domain of human complement receptor 2 (CR2; CD21) was linked to the complement-activating Fc region of human IgG1 (CR2-Fc), and the ability of the construct to target and amplify complement deposition on tumor cells was investigated. CR2 binds C3 activation fragments, and CR2-Fc targeted tumor cells by binding to C3 initially deposited by a tumor-specific antibody. Complement deposition on Du145 cells (human prostate cancer cell line) and anti-MUC1 mAb-mediated complement-dependent lysis of Du145 cells were significantly enhanced by CR2-Fc. Anti-MUC1 antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity of Du145 by human peripheral blood mononuclear cells was also significantly enhanced by CR2-Fc in both the presence and the absence of complement. Radiolabeled CR2-Fc targeted to s.c. Du145 tumors in nude mice treated with anti-MUC1 mAb, validating the targeting strategy in vivo. A metastatic model was used to investigate the effect of CR2-Fc in a therapeutic paradigm. Administration of CR2-Fc together with mAb therapy significantly improved long-term survival of nude mice challenged with an i.v. injection of EL4 cells. The data show that CR2-Fc enhances the therapeutic efficacy of antibody therapy, and the construct may provide particular benefits under conditions of limiting antibody concentration or low tumor antigen density.

  16. Enhancement of antibody-dependent mechanisms of tumor cell lysis by a targeted activator of complement.

    PubMed

    Imai, Masaki; Ohta, Rieko; Varela, Juan C; Song, Hongbin; Tomlinson, Stephen

    2007-10-01

    Complement inhibitors expressed on tumor cells provide a hindrance to the therapeutic efficacy of some monoclonal antibodies (mAb). We investigated a novel strategy to overwhelm complement inhibitor activity and amplify complement activation on tumor cells. The C3-binding domain of human complement receptor 2 (CR2; CD21) was linked to the complement-activating Fc region of human IgG1 (CR2-Fc), and the ability of the construct to target and amplify complement deposition on tumor cells was investigated. CR2 binds C3 activation fragments, and CR2-Fc targeted tumor cells by binding to C3 initially deposited by a tumor-specific antibody. Complement deposition on Du145 cells (human prostate cancer cell line) and anti-MUC1 mAb-mediated complement-dependent lysis of Du145 cells were significantly enhanced by CR2-Fc. Anti-MUC1 antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity of Du145 by human peripheral blood mononuclear cells was also significantly enhanced by CR2-Fc in both the presence and the absence of complement. Radiolabeled CR2-Fc targeted to s.c. Du145 tumors in nude mice treated with anti-MUC1 mAb, validating the targeting strategy in vivo. A metastatic model was used to investigate the effect of CR2-Fc in a therapeutic paradigm. Administration of CR2-Fc together with mAb therapy significantly improved long-term survival of nude mice challenged with an i.v. injection of EL4 cells. The data show that CR2-Fc enhances the therapeutic efficacy of antibody therapy, and the construct may provide particular benefits under conditions of limiting antibody concentration or low tumor antigen density. PMID:17909064

  17. Activity Enhancement Based on the Chemical Equilibrium of Multiple-Subunit Nitrile Hydratase from Bordetella petrii.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yi; Liu, Ping; Lin, Lu; Zhao, Yueqin; Zhong, Wenjuan; Wu, Lunjie; Zhou, Zhemin; Sun, Weifeng

    2016-09-01

    The maturation mechanism of nitrile hydratase (NHase) of Pseudomonas putida NRRL-18668 was discovered and named as "self-subunit swapping." Since the NHase of Bordetella petrii DSM 12804 is similar to that of P. putida, the NHase maturation of B. petrii is proposed to be the same as that of P. putida. However, there is no further information on the application of NHase according to these findings. We successfully rapidly purified NHase and its activator through affinity his tag, and found that the cell extracts of NHase possessed multiple types of protein ingredients including α, β, α2β2, and α(P14K)2 who were in a state of chemical equilibrium. Furthermore, the activity was significantly enhanced through adding extra α(P14K)2 to the cell extracts of NHase according to the chemical equilibrium. Our findings are useful for the activity enhancement of multiple-subunit enzyme and for the first time significantly increased the NHase activity according to the chemical equilibrium.

  18. Enhancing Cancer Immunotherapy Via Activation of Innate Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Goldberg, Jacob L.; Sondel, Paul M.

    2015-01-01

    Given recent technological advances and advances in our understanding of cancer, immunotherapy of cancer is being used with clear clinical benefit. The immunosuppression accompanying cancer itself, as well as with current cancer treatment with radiation or chemotherapy, impairs adaptive immune effectors to a greater extent than innate effector cells. In addition to being less suppressed, innate immune cells are capable of being enhanced via immune-stimulatory regimens. Most strategies being investigated to promote innate immune responses against cancer do not require complex, patient-specific, ex-vivo cellular or molecular creation of therapeutic agents; thus they can, generally, be used as “off the shelf” therapeutics that could be administered by most cancer clinics. Successful applications of innate immunotherapy in the clinic have effectively targeted components of the innate immune response. Preclinical data demonstrate how initiation of innate immune responses can lead to subsequent adaptive long-term cancer immunity. We hypothesize that integration of innate immune activation strategies into combination therapies for cancer treatment will lead to more effective and long term clinical benefit. PMID:26320061

  19. (-)-Epicatechin enhances the chlorinating activity of human myeloperoxidase.

    PubMed

    Kirchner, Tina; Flemmig, Jörg; Furtmüller, Paul Georg; Obinger, Christian; Arnhold, Jürgen

    2010-03-01

    The heme-containing enzyme myeloperoxidase (MPO) accumulates at inflammatory sites and is able to catalyse one- and two-electron oxidation reactions. Here it is shown that (-)-epicatechin, which is known to have numerous beneficial health effects, in low micromolar concentration enhances the degradation of monochlorodimedon (MCD) or the chlorination of taurine in a concentration-dependent bell-shaped manner whereas at higher concentrations it sufficiently suppresses the release of hypochlorous acid. Presented reaction mechanisms demonstrate the efficiency of micromolar concentrations of the flavan-3-ol in overcoming the accumulation of compound II that does not participate in the chlorination cycle. In case of MCD the mechanism is more complicated since it also acts as peroxidase substrate with very different reactivity towards compound I (3 x 10(5) M(-1) s(-1)) and compound II (8.8M(-1)s(-1)) at pH 7. By affecting the chlorinating activity of myeloperoxidase (-)-epicatechin may participate in regulation of immune responses at inflammatory sites.

  20. DNA methylation status predicts cell type-specific enhancer activity

    PubMed Central

    Wiench, Malgorzata; John, Sam; Baek, Songjoon; Johnson, Thomas A; Sung, Myong-Hee; Escobar, Thelma; Simmons, Catherine A; Pearce, Kenneth H; Biddie, Simon C; Sabo, Pete J; Thurman, Robert E; Stamatoyannopoulos, John A; Hager, Gordon L

    2011-01-01

    Cell-selective glucocorticoid receptor (GR) binding to distal regulatory elements is associated with cell type-specific regions of locally accessible chromatin. These regions can either pre-exist in chromatin (pre-programmed) or be induced by the receptor (de novo). Mechanisms that create and maintain these sites are not well understood. We observe a global enrichment of CpG density for pre-programmed elements, and implicate their demethylated state in the maintenance of open chromatin in a tissue-specific manner. In contrast, sites that are actively opened by GR (de novo) are characterized by low CpG density, and form a unique class of enhancers devoid of suppressive effect of agglomerated methyl-cytosines. Furthermore, treatment with glucocorticoids induces rapid changes in methylation levels at selected CpGs within de novo sites. Finally, we identify GR-binding elements with CpGs at critical positions, and show that methylation can affect GR–DNA interactions in vitro. The findings present a unique link between tissue-specific chromatin accessibility, DNA methylation and transcription factor binding and show that DNA methylation can be an integral component of gene regulation by nuclear receptors. PMID:21701563

  1. Physicochemical Properties That Enhance Discriminative Antibacterial Activity of Short Dermaseptin Derivatives

    PubMed Central

    Rotem, Shahar; Radzishevsky, Inna; Mor, Amram

    2006-01-01

    Antimicrobial peptides are widely believed to exert their effects by nonspecific mechanisms. We assessed the extent to which physicochemical properties can be exploited to promote discriminative activity by manipulating the N-terminal sequence of the 13-mer dermaseptin derivative K4-S4(1-13) (P). Inhibitory activity determined in culture media against 16 strains of bacteria showed that when its hydrophobicity and charge were changed, P became predominantly active against either gram-positive or gram-negative bacteria. Thus, conjugation of various aminoacyl-lysin moieties (e.g., aminohexyl-K-P) led to inactivity against gram-positive bacteria (MIC50 > 50 μM) but potent activity against gram-negative bacteria (MIC50, 6.2 μM). Conversely, conjugation of equivalent acyls to the substituted analog M4-S4(1-13) (e.g., hexyl-M4-P) led to inactivity against gram-negative bacteria (MIC50 > 50 μM) but potent activity against gram-positive bacteria (MIC50, 3.1 μM). Surface plasmon resonance experiments, used to investigate peptides' binding properties to lipopolysaccharide-containing idealized phospholipid membranes, suggest that although the acylated derivatives have increased lipophilic properties with parallel antibacterial behavior, hydrophobic derivatives are prevented from reaching the cytoplasmic membranes of gram-negative bacteria. Moreover, unlike modifications that enhanced the activity against gram-positive bacteria, which also enhanced hemolysis, we found that modifications that enhanced activity against gram-negative bacteria generally reduced hemolysis. Thus, compared with the clinically tested peptides MSI-78 and IB-367, the dermaseptin derivative aminohexyl-K-P performed similarly in terms of potency and bactericidal kinetics but was significantly more selective in terms of discrimination between bacteria and human erythrocytes. Overall, the data suggest that similar strategies maybe useful to derive potent and safe compounds from known antimicrobial

  2. Using the Significant Learning Taxonomy and Active Learning to Improve Accounting Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Killian, Larita J.; Brandon, Christopher D.

    2009-01-01

    Like other members of the academy, accounting professors are challenged to improve student learning. We must help students move beyond the "bean counter" role and develop higher-level skills such as analysis, synthesis, and problem-solving. The Significant Learning Taxonomy was used as a template to improve learning in an introductory accounting…

  3. Enhancing methane production from waste activated sludge using a novel indigenous iron activated peroxidation pre-treatment process.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Xu; Wang, Qilin; Jiang, Guangming

    2015-04-01

    Methane production from anaerobic digestion of waste activated sludge (WAS) is limited by the slow hydrolysis rate and/or poor methane potential of WAS. This study presents a novel pre-treatment strategy based on indigenous iron (in WAS) activated peroxidation to enhance methane production from WAS. Pre-treatment of WAS for 30 min at 50mg H2O2/g total solids (dry weight) and pH 2.0 (iron concentration in WAS was 7 mg/g TS) substantially enhanced WAS solubilization. Biochemical methane potential tests demonstrated that methane production was improved by 10% at a digestion time of 16d after incorporating the indigenous iron activated peroxidation pre-treatment. Model-based analysis indicated that indigenous iron activated peroxidation pre-treatment improved the methane potential by 13%, whereas the hydrolysis rate was not significantly affected. The economic analysis showed that the proposed pre-treatment method can save the cost by $112,000 per year in a treatment plant with a population equivalent of 300,000.

  4. Chondroitinase enhances cortical map plasticity and increases functionally active sprouting axons after brain injury.

    PubMed

    Harris, Neil G; Nogueira, Marcia S M; Verley, Derek R; Sutton, Richard L

    2013-07-15

    The beneficial effect of interventions with chondroitinase ABC enzyme to reduce axon growth-inhibitory chondroitin sulphate side chains after central nervous system injuries has been mainly attributed to enhanced axonal sprouting. After traumatic brain injury (TBI), it is unknown whether newly sprouting axons that occur as a result of interventional strategies are able to functionally contribute to existing circuitry, and it is uncertain whether maladaptive sprouting occurs to increase the well-known risk for seizure activity after TBI. Here, we show that after a controlled cortical impact injury in rats, chondroitinase infusion into injured cortex at 30 min and 3 days reduced c-Fos⁺ cell staining resulting from the injury alone at 1 week postinjury, indicating that at baseline, abnormal spontaneous activity is likely to be reduced, not increased, with this type of intervention. c-Fos⁺ cell staining elicited by neural activity from stimulation of the affected forelimb 1 week after injury was significantly enhanced by chondroitinase, indicating a widespread effect on cortical map plasticity. Underlying this map plasticity was a larger contribution of neuronal, rather than glial cells and an absence of c-Fos⁺ cells surrounded by perineuronal nets that were normally present in stimulated naïve rats. After injury, chondroitin sulfate proteoglycan digestion produced the expected increase in growth-associated protein 43-positive axons and perikarya, of which a significantly greater number were double labeled for c-Fos after intervention with chondroitinase, compared to vehicle. These data indicate that chondroitinase produces significant gains in cortical map plasticity after TBI, and that either axonal sprouting and/or changes in perineuronal nets may underlie this effect. Chondroitinase dampens, rather than increases nonspecific c-Fos activity after brain injury, and induction of axonal sprouting is not maladaptive because greater numbers are functionally

  5. Musclin is an activity-stimulated myokine that enhances physical endurance.

    PubMed

    Subbotina, Ekaterina; Sierra, Ana; Zhu, Zhiyong; Gao, Zhan; Koganti, Siva Rama Krishna; Reyes, Santiago; Stepniak, Elizabeth; Walsh, Susan A; Acevedo, Michael R; Perez-Terzic, Carmen M; Hodgson-Zingman, Denice M; Zingman, Leonid V

    2015-12-29

    Exercise remains the most effective way to promote physical and metabolic wellbeing, but molecular mechanisms underlying exercise tolerance and its plasticity are only partially understood. In this study we identify musclin-a peptide with high homology to natriuretic peptides (NP)-as an exercise-responsive myokine that acts to enhance exercise capacity in mice. We use human primary myoblast culture and in vivo murine models to establish that the activity-related production of musclin is driven by Ca(2+)-dependent activation of Akt1 and the release of musclin-encoding gene (Ostn) transcription from forkhead box O1 transcription factor inhibition. Disruption of Ostn and elimination of musclin secretion in mice results in reduced exercise tolerance that can be rescued by treatment with recombinant musclin. Reduced exercise capacity in mice with disrupted musclin signaling is associated with a trend toward lower levels of plasma atrial NP (ANP) and significantly smaller levels of cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-α in skeletal muscles after exposure to exercise. Furthermore, in agreement with the established musclin ability to interact with NP clearance receptors, but not with NP guanyl cyclase-coupled signaling receptors, we demonstrate that musclin enhances cGMP production in cultured myoblasts only when applied together with ANP. Elimination of the activity-related musclin-dependent boost of ANP/cGMP signaling results in significantly lower maximum aerobic capacity, mitochondrial protein content, respiratory complex protein expression, and succinate dehydrogenase activity in skeletal muscles. Together, these data indicate that musclin enhances physical endurance by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis. PMID:26668395

  6. Musclin is an activity-stimulated myokine that enhances physical endurance

    PubMed Central

    Subbotina, Ekaterina; Sierra, Ana; Zhu, Zhiyong; Gao, Zhan; Koganti, Siva Rama Krishna; Reyes, Santiago; Stepniak, Elizabeth; Walsh, Susan A.; Acevedo, Michael R.; Perez-Terzic, Carmen M.; Hodgson-Zingman, Denice M.; Zingman, Leonid V.

    2015-01-01

    Exercise remains the most effective way to promote physical and metabolic wellbeing, but molecular mechanisms underlying exercise tolerance and its plasticity are only partially understood. In this study we identify musclin—a peptide with high homology to natriuretic peptides (NP)—as an exercise-responsive myokine that acts to enhance exercise capacity in mice. We use human primary myoblast culture and in vivo murine models to establish that the activity-related production of musclin is driven by Ca2+-dependent activation of Akt1 and the release of musclin-encoding gene (Ostn) transcription from forkhead box O1 transcription factor inhibition. Disruption of Ostn and elimination of musclin secretion in mice results in reduced exercise tolerance that can be rescued by treatment with recombinant musclin. Reduced exercise capacity in mice with disrupted musclin signaling is associated with a trend toward lower levels of plasma atrial NP (ANP) and significantly smaller levels of cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-α in skeletal muscles after exposure to exercise. Furthermore, in agreement with the established musclin ability to interact with NP clearance receptors, but not with NP guanyl cyclase-coupled signaling receptors, we demonstrate that musclin enhances cGMP production in cultured myoblasts only when applied together with ANP. Elimination of the activity-related musclin-dependent boost of ANP/cGMP signaling results in significantly lower maximum aerobic capacity, mitochondrial protein content, respiratory complex protein expression, and succinate dehydrogenase activity in skeletal muscles. Together, these data indicate that musclin enhances physical endurance by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis. PMID:26668395

  7. Activity enhances dopaminergic long-duration response in Parkinson disease

    PubMed Central

    Auinger, Peggy; Fahn, Stanley; Oakes, David; Shoulson, Ira; Kieburtz, Karl; Rudolph, Alice; Marek, Kenneth; Seibyl, John; Lang, Anthony; Olanow, C. Warren; Tanner, Caroline; Schifitto, Giovanni; Zhao, Hongwei; Reyes, Lydia; Shinaman, Aileen; Comella, Cynthia L.; Goetz, Christopher; Blasucci, Lucia M.; Samanta, Johan; Stacy, Mark; Williamson, Kelli; Harrigan, Mary; Greene, Paul; Ford, Blair; Moskowitz, Carol; Truong, Daniel D.; Pathak, Mayank; Jankovic, Joseph; Ondo, William; Atassi, Farah; Hunter, Christine; Jacques, Carol; Friedman, Joseph H.; Lannon, Margaret; Russell, David S.; Jennings, Danna; Fussell, Barbara; Standaert, David; Schwarzschild, Michael A.; Growdon, John H.; Tennis, Marsha; Gauthier, Serge; Panisset, Michel; Hall, Jean; Gancher, Stephen; Hammerstad, John P.; Stone, Claudia; Alexander-Brown, Barbara; Factor, Stewart A.; Molho, Eric; Brown, Diane; Evans, Sharon; Clark, Jeffrey; Manyam, Bala; Simpson, Patricia; Wulbrecht, Brian; Whetteckey, Jacqueline; Martin, Wayne; Roberts, Ted; King, Pamela; Hauser, Robert; Zesiewicz, Theresa; Gauger, Lisa; Trugman, Joel; Wooten, G. Frederick; Rost-Ruffner, Elke; Perlmutter, Joel; Racette, Brad A.; Suchowersky, Oksana; Ranawaya, Ranjit; Wood, Susan; Pantella, Carol; Kurlan, Roger; Richard, Irene; Pearson, Nancy; Caviness, John N.; Adler, Charles; Lind, Marlene; Simuni, Tanya; Siderowf, Andrew; Colcher, Amy; Lloyd, Mary; Weiner, William; Shulman, Lisa; Koller, William; Lyons, Kelly; Feldman, Robert G.; Saint-Hilaire, Marie H.; Ellias, Samuel; Thomas, Cathi-Ann; Juncos, Jorge; Watts, Ray; Partlow, Anna; Tetrud, James; Togasaki, Daniel M.; Stewart, Tracy; Mark, Margery H.; Sage, Jacob I.; Caputo, Debbie; Gould, Harry; Rao, Jayaraman; McKendrick, Ann; Brin, Mitchell; Danisi, Fabio; Benabou, Reina; Hubble, Jean; Paulson, George W.; Reider, Carson; Birnbaum, Alex; Miyasaki, Janis; Johnston, Lisa; So, Julie; Pahwa, Rajesh; Dubinsky, Richard M.; Wszolek, Zbigniew; Uitti, Ryan; Turk, Margaret; Tuite, Paul; Rottenberg, David; Hansen, Joy; Ramos, Serrano; Waters, Cheryl; Lew, Mark; Welsh, Mickie; Kawai, Connie; O'Brien, Christopher; Kumar, Rajeev; Seeberger, Lauren; Judd, Deborah; Barclay, C. Lynn; Grimes, David A.; Sutherland, Laura; Dawson, Ted; Reich, Stephen; Dunlop, Rebecca; Albin, Roger; Frey, Kirk; Wernette, Kristine; Fahn, Stanley; Oakes, David; Shoulson, Ira; Kieburtz, Karl; Rudolph, Alice; Marek, Kenneth; Seibyl, John; Lang, Anthony; Olanow, C. Warren; Tanner, Caroline; Schifitto, Giovanni; Zhao, Hongwei; Reyes, Lydia; Shinaman, Aileen; Comella, Cynthia L.; Goetz, Christopher; Blasucci, Lucia M.; Samanta, Johan; Stacy, Mark; Williamson, Kelli; Harrigan, Mary; Greene, Paul; Ford, Blair; Moskowitz, Carol; Truong, Daniel D.; Pathak, Mayank; Jankovic, Joseph; Ondo, William; Atassi, Farah; Hunter, Christine; Jacques, Carol; Friedman, Joseph H.; Lannon, Margaret; Russell, David S.; Jennings, Danna; Fussell, Barbara; Standaert, David; Schwarzschild, Michael A.; Growdon, John H.; Tennis, Marsha; Gauthier, Serge; Panisset, Michel; Hall, Jean; Gancher, Stephen; Hammerstad, John P.; Stone, Claudia; Alexander-Brown, Barbara; Factor, Stewart A.; Molho, Eric; Brown, Diane; Evans, Sharon; Clark, Jeffrey; Manyam, Bala; Simpson, Patricia; Wulbrecht, Brian; Whetteckey, Jacqueline; Martin, Wayne; Roberts, Ted; King, Pamela; Hauser, Robert; Zesiewicz, Theresa; Gauger, Lisa; Trugman, Joel; Wooten, G. Frederick; Rost-Ruffner, Elke; Perlmutter, Joel; Racette, Brad A.; Suchowersky, Oksana; Ranawaya, Ranjit; Wood, Susan; Pantella, Carol; Kurlan, Roger; Richard, Irene; Pearson, Nancy; Caviness, John N.; Adler, Charles; Lind, Marlene; Simuni, Tanya; Siderowf, Andrew; Colcher, Amy; Lloyd, Mary; Weiner, William; Shulman, Lisa; Koller, William; Lyons, Kelly; Feldman, Robert G.; Saint-Hilaire, Marie H.; Ellias, Samuel; Thomas, Cathi-Ann; Juncos, Jorge; Watts, Ray; Partlow, Anna; Tetrud, James; Togasaki, Daniel M.; Stewart, Tracy; Mark, Margery H.; Sage, Jacob I.; Caputo, Debbie; Gould, Harry; Rao, Jayaraman; McKendrick, Ann; Brin, Mitchell; Danisi, Fabio; Benabou, Reina; Hubble, Jean; Paulson, George W.; Reider, Carson; Birnbaum, Alex; Miyasaki, Janis; Johnston, Lisa; So, Julie; Pahwa, Rajesh; Dubinsky, Richard M.; Wszolek, Zbigniew; Uitti, Ryan; Turk, Margaret; Tuite, Paul; Rottenberg, David; Hansen, Joy; Ramos, Serrano; Waters, Cheryl; Lew, Mark; Welsh, Mickie; Kawai, Connie; O'Brien, Christopher; Kumar, Rajeev; Seeberger, Lauren; Judd, Deborah; Barclay, C. Lynn; Grimes, David A.; Sutherland, Laura; Dawson, Ted; Reich, Stephen; Dunlop, Rebecca; Albin, Roger; Frey, Kirk; Wernette, Kristine; Mendis, Tilak

    2012-01-01

    Objective: We tested the hypothesis that dopamine-dependent motor learning mechanism underlies the long-duration response to levodopa in Parkinson disease (PD) based on our studies in a mouse model. By data-mining the motor task performance in dominant and nondominant hands of the subjects in a double-blind randomized trial of levodopa therapy, the effects of activity and dopamine therapy were examined. Methods: We data-mined the Earlier versus Later Levodopa Therapy in Parkinson's Disease (ELLDOPA) study published in 2005 and performed statistical analysis comparing the effects of levodopa and dominance of handedness over 42 weeks. Results: The mean change in finger-tapping counts from baseline before the initiation of therapy to predose at 9 weeks and 40 weeks increased more in the dominant compared to nondominant hand in levodopa-treated subjects in a dose-dependent fashion. There was no significant difference in dominant vs nondominant hands in the placebo group. The short-duration response assessed by the difference of postdose performance compared to predose performance at the same visit did not show any significant difference between dominant vs nondominant hands. Conclusions: Active use of the dominant hand and dopamine replacement therapy produces synergistic effect on long-lasting motor task performance during “off” medication state. Such effect was confined to dopamine-responsive symptoms and not seen in dopamine-resistant symptoms such as gait and balance. We propose that long-lasting motor learning facilitated by activity and dopamine is a form of disease modification that is often seen in trials of medications that have symptomatic effects. PMID:22459675

  8. Therapeutic significance and pharmacological activities of antidiarrheal medicinal plants mention in Ayurveda: A review

    PubMed Central

    Mishra, Ashish; Seth, Ankit; Maurya, Santosh Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Diarrhea is a serious problem affecting 3-5 billion people per year around the world, especially children of below 5 years. 70% of the world population uses traditional and indigenous medicine for their primary health care. The facts of these indigenous remedies are passed verbally and sometimes as documents. Since ancient time, Ayurveda is the main system of healing in South East Asian countries. Indian literature from ayurvedic texts and other books claim the potency of several plants in the treatment of diarrhea. As the global prospective of ayurvedic medicine is increasing, interest regarding the scientific basis of their action is parallely increasing. Researchers are doing experiments to establish the relation between the claimed action and observed pharmacological activities. In the present article, an attempt was made to compile the scientific basis of medicinal plants used to cure diarrhea in Ayurveda. Literature was collected via electronic search (PubMed, ScienceDirect, Medline, and Google Scholar) from published articles that reports antidiarrheal activity of plants that were mentioned in Ayurveda classics. A total of 109 plant species belonging to 58 families were reported for their antidiarrheal activity. Several Indian medicinal plants have demonstrated promising antidiarrheal effects, but the studies on the antidiarrheal potentials of these plants are not taken beyond proof of concept stage. It is hoped that the article would stimulate future clinical studies because of the paucity of knowledge in this area. PMID:27366356

  9. Therapeutic significance and pharmacological activities of antidiarrheal medicinal plants mention in Ayurveda: A review.

    PubMed

    Mishra, Ashish; Seth, Ankit; Maurya, Santosh Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Diarrhea is a serious problem affecting 3-5 billion people per year around the world, especially children of below 5 years. 70% of the world population uses traditional and indigenous medicine for their primary health care. The facts of these indigenous remedies are passed verbally and sometimes as documents. Since ancient time, Ayurveda is the main system of healing in South East Asian countries. Indian literature from ayurvedic texts and other books claim the potency of several plants in the treatment of diarrhea. As the global prospective of ayurvedic medicine is increasing, interest regarding the scientific basis of their action is parallely increasing. Researchers are doing experiments to establish the relation between the claimed action and observed pharmacological activities. In the present article, an attempt was made to compile the scientific basis of medicinal plants used to cure diarrhea in Ayurveda. Literature was collected via electronic search (PubMed, ScienceDirect, Medline, and Google Scholar) from published articles that reports antidiarrheal activity of plants that were mentioned in Ayurveda classics. A total of 109 plant species belonging to 58 families were reported for their antidiarrheal activity. Several Indian medicinal plants have demonstrated promising antidiarrheal effects, but the studies on the antidiarrheal potentials of these plants are not taken beyond proof of concept stage. It is hoped that the article would stimulate future clinical studies because of the paucity of knowledge in this area. PMID:27366356

  10. Significant Modules and Biological Processes between Active Components of Salvia miltiorrhiza Depside Salt and Aspirin

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Yanming; Wang, Lianxin; Zhang, Yingying; Gu, Hao; Chai, Yan

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study is to examine and compare the similarities and differences between active components of S. miltiorrhiza depside salt and aspirin using perspective of pharmacological molecular networks. Active components of S. miltiorrhiza depside salt and aspirin's related genes were identified via the STITCH4.0 and GeneCards Database. A text search engine (Agilent Literature Search 2.71) and MCODE software were applied to construct network and divide modules, respectively. Finally, 32, 2, and 28 overlapping genes, modules, and pathways were identified between active components of S. miltiorrhiza depside salt and aspirin. A multidimensional framework of drug network showed that two networks reflected commonly in human aortic endothelial cells and atherosclerosis process. Aspirin plays a more important role in metabolism, such as the well-known AA metabolism pathway and other lipid or carbohydrate metabolism pathways. S. miltiorrhiza depside salt still plays a regulatory role in type II diabetes mellitus, insulin resistance, and adipocytokine signaling pathway. Therefore, this study suggests that aspirin combined with S. miltiorrhiza depside salt may be more efficient in treatment of CHD patients, especially those with diabetes mellitus or hyperlipidemia. Further clinical trials to confirm this hypothesis are still needed. PMID:27069488

  11. Formation of disulfide bonds in insect prophenoloxidase enhances immunity through improving enzyme activity and stability.

    PubMed

    Lu, Anrui; Peng, Qin; Ling, Erjun

    2014-06-01

    Type 3 copper proteins, including insect prophenoloxidase (PPO), contain two copper atoms in the active site pocket and can oxidize phenols. Insect PPO plays an important role in immunity. Insects and other invertebrates show limited recovery from pathogen invasion and wounds if phenoloxidase (PO) activity is low. In most insect PPOs, two disulfide bonds are present near the C-terminus. However, in Pimpla hypochondriaca (a parasitoid wasp), each PPO contains one disulfide bond. We thus questioned whether the formation of two sulfide bonds in insect PPOs improved protein stability and/or increased insect innate immunity over time. Using Drosophila melanogaster PPO1 as a model, one or two disulfide bonds were deleted to evaluate the importance of disulfide bonds in insect immunity. rPPO1 and mutants lacking disulfide bonds could be expressed and showed PO activity. However, the PO activities of mutants lacking one or two disulfide bonds significantly decreased. Deletion of disulfide bonds also reduced PPO thermostability. Furthermore, antibacterial activities against Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis significantly decreased when disulfide bonds were deleted. Therefore, the formation of two disulfide bond(s) in insect PPO enhances antibacterial activity by increasing PO activity and stability.

  12. Synergetic pretreatment of waste activated sludge by Fe(II)-activated persulfate oxidation under mild temperature for enhanced dewaterability.

    PubMed

    Zhen, Guangyin; Lu, Xueqin; Wang, Baoying; Zhao, Youcai; Chai, Xiaoli; Niu, Dongjie; Zhao, Aihua; Li, Yuyou; Song, Yu; Cao, Xianyan

    2012-11-01

    The potential benefits of Fe(II)-activated persulfate (S(2)O(8)(2-)) oxidation under mild temperature in enhancing the dewaterability of waste activated sludge were investigated. Capillary suction time (CST) was used to characterize sludge dewatering. Zeta potential, particle size distribution, three-dimensional excitation-emission matrix (EEM) fluorescence spectroscopy, fourier-transformed infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy and scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) were employed to explore influencing mechanisms. The results indicated that the dewaterability was deteriorated with single thermal treatment, but significantly enhanced in the presence of Fe(II)-S(2)O(8)(2-) oxidation and further advanced together with thermal treatment. EEM and FT-IR analysis indicated that combined thermal and Fe(II)-S(2)O(8)(2-) oxidation pretreatment led to degrading of tyrosine and tryptophan protein-like substances in extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) and cleavage of linkages in polymeric backbone. SEM images further revealed the rupture of sludge flocs at the colloidal scale, which contributed to the release of EPS-bound water and interstitial water trapped between flocs, and subsequent enhanced dewaterability.

  13. The Hierarchy of Transcriptional Activation: From Enhancer to Promoter.

    PubMed

    Vernimmen, Douglas; Bickmore, Wendy A

    2015-12-01

    Regulatory elements (enhancers) that are remote from promoters play a critical role in the spatial, temporal, and physiological control of gene expression. Studies on specific loci, together with genome-wide approaches, suggest that there may be many common mechanisms involved in enhancer-promoter communication. Here, we discuss the multiprotein complexes that are recruited to enhancers and the hierarchy of events taking place between regulatory elements and promoters.

  14. Erythropoietin enhancement of rat pancreatic tumor cell proliferation requires the activation of ERK and JNK signals.

    PubMed

    Bose, Chhanda; Udupa, Kodetthoor B

    2008-08-01

    Erythropoietin (EPO) regulates the proliferation and differentiation of erythroid cells by binding to its specific transmembrane receptor EPOR. Recent studies, however, have shown that the EPOR is additionally present in various cancer cells and EPO induces the proliferation of these cells, suggesting a different function for EPO other than erythropoiesis. Therefore, the purpose of the present study was to examine EPOR expression and the role of EPO in the proliferation and signaling cascades involved in this process, using the rat pancreatic tumor cell line AR42J. Our results showed that AR42J cells expressed EPOR, and EPO significantly enhanced their proliferation. Cell cycle analysis of EPO-treated cells indicated an increased percentage of cells in the S phase, whereas cell numbers in G0/G1 phase were significantly reduced. Phosphorylation of extracellular regulatory kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) and c-Jun NH(2) terminal kinase 1/2 (JNK1/2) was rapidly stimulated and sustained after EPO addition. Treatment of cells with mitogen-activated protein/ERK kinase (MEK) inhibitor PD98059 or JNK inhibitor SP600125 significantly inhibited EPO-enhanced proliferation and also increased the fraction of cells in G0/G1 phase. Furthermore, the inhibition of JNK using small interference RNA (siRNA) suppressed EPO-enhanced proliferation of AR42J cells. Taken together, our results indicate that AR42J cells express EPOR and that the activation of both ERK1/2 and JNK1/2 by EPO is essential in regulating proliferation and the cell cycle. Thus both appear to play a key role in EPO-enhanced proliferation and suggest that the presence of both is required for EPO-mediated proliferation of AR42J cells.

  15. Dissociated functional significance of decision-related activity in the primate dorsal stream.

    PubMed

    Katz, Leor N; Yates, Jacob L; Pillow, Jonathan W; Huk, Alexander C

    2016-07-04

    During decision making, neurons in multiple brain regions exhibit responses that are correlated with decisions. However, it remains uncertain whether or not various forms of decision-related activity are causally related to decision making. Here we address this question by recording and reversibly inactivating the lateral intraparietal (LIP) and middle temporal (MT) areas of rhesus macaques performing a motion direction discrimination task. Neurons in area LIP exhibited firing rate patterns that directly resembled the evidence accumulation process posited to govern decision making, with strong correlations between their response fluctuations and the animal's choices. Neurons in area MT, in contrast, exhibited weak correlations between their response fluctuations and choices, and had firing rate patterns consistent with their sensory role in motion encoding. The behavioural impact of pharmacological inactivation of each area was inversely related to their degree of decision-related activity: while inactivation of neurons in MT profoundly impaired psychophysical performance, inactivation in LIP had no measurable impact on decision-making performance, despite having silenced the very clusters that exhibited strong decision-related activity. Although LIP inactivation did not impair psychophysical behaviour, it did influence spatial selection and oculomotor metrics in a free-choice control task. The absence of an effect on perceptual decision making was stable over trials and sessions and was robust to changes in stimulus type and task geometry, arguing against several forms of compensation. Thus, decision-related signals in LIP do not appear to be critical for computing perceptual decisions, and may instead reflect secondary processes. Our findings highlight a dissociation between decision correlation and causation, showing that strong neuron-decision correlations do not necessarily offer direct access to the neural computations underlying decisions.

  16. UNESCO active learning approach in optics and photonics leads to significant change in Morocco

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berrada, K.; Channa, R.; Outzourhit, A.; Azizan, M.; Oueriagli, A.

    2014-07-01

    There are many difficulties in teaching science and technology in developing countries. Several different teaching strategies have to be applied in these cases. More specifically, for developing countries competencies in teaching science in the introductory classroom has attracted much attention. As a specific example we will consider the Moroccan system. In most developing countries everything is moving so slowly that the progress stays static for development. Also, any change needs time, effort and engagement. In our case we discovered that many teachers feel uncomfortable when introducing new teaching methods and evaluation in classes at introductory physics. However, the introduction of an Active Learning in our curricula showed difficulties that students have in understanding physics and especially concepts. Students were interested in having Active Learning courses much more than passive and traditional ones. Changing believes on physical phenomena and reality of the world students become more attractive and their way of thinking Science changed. The main philosophy of fostering modern hands-on learning techniques -adapted to local needs and availability of teaching resources- is elaborated. The Active Learning program provides the teachers with a conceptual evaluation instrument, drawn from relevant physics education research, giving teachers an important tool to measure student learning. We will try to describe the UNESCO Chair project in physics created in 2010 at Cadi Ayyad University since our first experience with UNESCO ALOP program. Many efforts have been done so far and the project helps now to develop more national and international collaborations between universities and Regional Academies of Education and Training. As a new result of these actions and according to our local needs, the translation of the ALOP program into Arabic is now available under the auspice of UNESCO and encouragement of international partners SPIE, ICTP, ICO and OSA.

  17. Dissociated functional significance of decision-related activity in the primate dorsal stream.

    PubMed

    Katz, Leor N; Yates, Jacob L; Pillow, Jonathan W; Huk, Alexander C

    2016-07-14

    During decision making, neurons in multiple brain regions exhibit responses that are correlated with decisions. However, it remains uncertain whether or not various forms of decision-related activity are causally related to decision making. Here we address this question by recording and reversibly inactivating the lateral intraparietal (LIP) and middle temporal (MT) areas of rhesus macaques performing a motion direction discrimination task. Neurons in area LIP exhibited firing rate patterns that directly resembled the evidence accumulation process posited to govern decision making, with strong correlations between their response fluctuations and the animal's choices. Neurons in area MT, in contrast, exhibited weak correlations between their response fluctuations and choices, and had firing rate patterns consistent with their sensory role in motion encoding. The behavioural impact of pharmacological inactivation of each area was inversely related to their degree of decision-related activity: while inactivation of neurons in MT profoundly impaired psychophysical performance, inactivation in LIP had no measurable impact on decision-making performance, despite having silenced the very clusters that exhibited strong decision-related activity. Although LIP inactivation did not impair psychophysical behaviour, it did influence spatial selection and oculomotor metrics in a free-choice control task. The absence of an effect on perceptual decision making was stable over trials and sessions and was robust to changes in stimulus type and task geometry, arguing against several forms of compensation. Thus, decision-related signals in LIP do not appear to be critical for computing perceptual decisions, and may instead reflect secondary processes. Our findings highlight a dissociation between decision correlation and causation, showing that strong neuron-decision correlations do not necessarily offer direct access to the neural computations underlying decisions. PMID:27376476

  18. Patient with Macular Disease, Good Visual Acuity, and Central Visual Field Disruption and Significant Difficulties with Activities of Daily Living

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fletcher, Donald C.; Schuchard, Ronald A.; Walker, Joseph P.; Raskauskas, Paul A.

    2008-01-01

    It is generally appreciated that patients with macular disease frequently experience reduced visual acuity. It is not as widely appreciated that they often have significant central visual field disruption, which, by itself, can cause significant problems with activities of daily living, such as reading and driving, even when they maintain good…

  19. Significance of active growth faulting on marsh accretion processes in the lower Pearl River, Louisiana

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeager, Kevin M.; Brunner, Charlotte A.; Kulp, Mark A.; Fischer, Dane; Feagin, Rusty A.; Schindler, Kimberly J.; Prouhet, Jeremiah; Bera, Gopal

    2012-06-01

    Neotectonic processes influence marsh accretion in the lower Pearl River valley. Active growth faults are suggested by groupings of ponded river channel sections, transverse and linear river channel sections, and down- and across-valley contrasts in channel sinuosity. Seismic profiles identified several likely, fault-induced structural anomalies, two of which parallel the axes of surface distributary networks. Lithostratigraphy and biostratigraphy of six cores from across a suspected fault in the West Middle River, combined with 14C-based age control, yielded evidence of vertical offsets, indicating that this river section is on the plane of a growth fault. These data were used to estimate fault slip rates over two time intervals, 1.2 mm/y over the last 1300 yr, and 0.2 mm yr- 1 over the last 3700 yr, and delineated a sinusoidal pattern of deformation moving distally from the fault, which we interpret as resulting from fault-propagation folding. Higher rates of sediment accumulation (of the order of cm yr- 1 from 210Pbxs and 137Cs activity data) on the down-thrown side are consistent with sedimentary response to increased accommodation space, and mass-based sediment accumulation rates (g cm- 2 yr- 1) exhibit a pattern inverse of that shown by fault-driven sinusoidal deformation. We contend that near-surface growth faults are critically important to driving accretion rates and marsh response to sea-level rise.

  20. [The dream as mind's "organizer": neuropsychological contribution into the function and significance of the oneiric activity].

    PubMed

    Riboldi, A

    1994-06-01

    The author examines the oneiric activity in a neuropsychologic prospect, as he considers this approach as valid and capable of giving good results for the understanding of psychic phenomena. After explaining synthetically the principles of the psychophysiologic school of Chicago, of the neuro-physiologic school of professor M. Jouvet in Lyon, and the theoretic hypotheses derived from clinical knowledge like that of the neurologist O. Sacks, the author develops Jouvet's principle of the dream as "endogenous phylogenetic learning". The author is of the opinion that the dream, from a psycho-biological standpoint, has such features that it can be considered as a process that is very similar to the creative one, as intended by S. Arieti, and that has its roots in the "homo naturalis". The oneiric activity seems to be able to implement a creative synthesis between nature and culture, between soma and psyche, between rational world and archetypalinstinctive world, in compliance with the fundamental creative process on which the evolution is based, as explained by K. Lorenz and Teilhard de Chardin with the expressions "unity from diversity" and "créer c'est unir". Therefore, it can be an instrument capable of helping the contemporary man, whose identity is threatened by the excessive discrepancy between the rational conscious process, that is conditioned by the extremely quick cultural transformation (mainly due to technology) and the unconscious archetypal-instinctive process, which is connected with the slow phylogenetic evolution.

  1. Effects of Selenylation Modification on Immune-Enhancing Activity of Garlic Polysaccharide

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Tao; Hu, Yuanliang; Wang, Deyun; Fan, Qiang; Zhang, Cunshuai; Chen, Xingying; Chen, Xiaolan; Liu, Cui; Gao, Zhenzhen; Li, Xiuping

    2014-01-01

    The garlic polysaccharide was modified by HNO3-Na2SeO3 method according to orthogonal design L9(34) to obtain nine selenizing garlic polysaccharides, sGPS1-sGPS9. Their effects on chicken peripheral lymphocytes proliferation in vitro were compared by MTT assay. The results showed that sGPSs could significantly promote lymphocytes proliferation, sGPS3, sGPS5 and sGPS6 presented stronger efficacy. In vivo experiment, 14-day-old chickens were injected respectively with sGPS3, sGPS5 and sGPS6 when they were vaccinated with ND vaccine taking unmodified GPS as control. The results showed that three sGPSs could significantly promote lymphocyte proliferation, enhance serum antibody titer, IFN-γ and IL-2 contents. These results indicated that selenylation modification could significantly enhance the immune-enhancing activity of GPS, sGPS6 possessed the best efficacy and could be as a candidate drug of immunoenhancer. Its optimal modification conditions were 400 mg of sodium selenite for 500 mg of GPS, reaction temperature of 70°C and reaction time of 6 h. PMID:24497946

  2. Potential chemoprevention activity of pterostilbene by enhancing the detoxifying enzymes in the HT-29 cell line.

    PubMed

    Harun, Zaliha; Ghazali, Ahmad Rohi

    2012-01-01

    Detoxifying enzymes are present in most epithelial cells of the human gastrointestinal tract where they protect against xenobiotics which may cause cancer. Induction of examples such as glutathione S-transferase (GST) and its thiol conjugate, glutathione (GSH) as well as NAD(P)H: quinoneoxidoreductase (NQO1) facilitate the excretion of carcinogens and thus preventing colon carcinogenesis. Pterostilbene, an analogue of resveratrol, has demonstrated numerous pharmacological activities linked with chemoprevention. This study was conducted to investigate the potential of pterostilbene as a chemopreventive agent using the HT-29 colon cancer cell line to study the modulation of GST and NQO1 activities as well as the GSH level. Initially, our group, established the optimum dose of 24 hours pterostilbene treatment using MTT assays. Then, effects of pterostilbene (0-50 μM) on GST and NQO1 activity and GSH levels were determined using GST, NQO1 and Ellman assays, respectively. MTT assay of pterostilbene (0-100 μM) showed no cytotoxicity toward the HT-29 cell line. Treatment increased GST activity in the cell line significantly (p<0.05) at 12.5 and 25.0 μM. In addition, treatment at 50 μM increased the GSH level significantly (p<0.05). Pterostilbene also enhanced NQO1 activity significantly (p<0.05) at 12.5 μM and 50 μM. Hence, pterostilbene is a potential chemopreventive agent capable of modulation of detoxifiying enzyme levels in HT-29 cells.

  3. Enhanced AMPA receptor activity increases operant alcohol self-administration and cue-induced reinstatement.

    PubMed

    Cannady, Reginald; Fisher, Kristen R; Durant, Brandon; Besheer, Joyce; Hodge, Clyde W

    2013-01-01

    Long-term alcohol exposure produces neuroadaptations that contribute to the progression of alcohol abuse disorders. Chronic alcohol consumption results in strengthened excitatory neurotransmission and increased α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptors (AMPA) receptor signaling in animal models. However, the mechanistic role of enhanced AMPA receptor activity in alcohol-reinforcement and alcohol-seeking behavior remains unclear. This study examined the role of enhanced AMPA receptor function using the selective positive allosteric modulator, aniracetam, in modulating operant alcohol self-administration and cue-induced reinstatement. Male alcohol-preferring (P-) rats, trained to self-administer alcohol (15%, v/v) versus water were pre-treated with aniracetam to assess effects on maintenance of alcohol self-administration. To determine reinforcer specificity, P-rats were trained to self-administer sucrose (0.8%, w/v) versus water, and effects of aniracetam were tested. The role of aniracetam in modulating relapse of alcohol-seeking was assessed using a response contingent cue-induced reinstatement procedure in P-rats trained to self-administer 15% alcohol. Aniracetam pre-treatment significantly increased alcohol-reinforced responses relative to vehicle treatment. This increase was not attributed to aniracetam-induced hyperactivity as aniracetam pre-treatment did not alter locomotor activity. AMPA receptor involvement was confirmed because 6,7-dinitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (AMPA receptor antagonist) blocked the aniracetam-induced increase in alcohol self-administration. Aniracetam did not alter sucrose-reinforced responses in sucrose-trained P-rats, suggesting that enhanced AMPA receptor activity is selective in modulating the reinforcing function of alcohol. Finally, aniracetam pre-treatment potentiated cue-induced reinstatement of alcohol-seeking behavior versus vehicle-treated P-rats. These data suggest that enhanced glutamate activity at AMPA

  4. Enhancement of anti-tumor activity of natural killer cells by BALL-1, a B cell lymphoma line.

    PubMed

    Hirashima, M; Yoshida, N; Seki, M; Okada, H; Takamura, S; Mihara, Y

    1998-04-01

    The anti-tumor activity of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) against various tumor cell line cells (K562, Daudi, KMG-2, and KATOIII) was enhanced by coculture with irradiated BALL-1, but not with other irradiated B cell line cells (NALM-1, Namalwa, and Daudi). PBMC cocultured with BALL-1, however, failed to exhibit evident cytotoxicity against autologous concanavalin A-induced lymphoblasts. The enhancement of the anti-tumor activity seemed not to be correlated with EBNA and HLA-DR expression on B cell line cells. Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against interleukin (IL)-2, interferon-gamma, IL-12, IL-15, tumor necrosis factor-alpha and lymphotoxin showed little or no suppression of the anti-tumor activity of PBMC treated with irradiated BALL-1. Furthermore, the culture supernatants of BALL-1 failed to enhance the anti-tumor activity of PBMC, suggesting no involvement of soluble factors in the induction of the anti-tumor activity. The anti-tumor activity of PBMC treated with BALL-1 was synergistically enhanced by an additional IL-2 stimulation. Periodate-lysine-paraformaldehyde-fixed, but not ethanol- or acetone-fixed, BALL-1 could significantly enhance the anti-tumor activity. Furthermore, BALL-1-derived membrane fraction, but not that of Daudi, enhances the anti-tumor activity. It was thus suggested that some membrane glycoproteins on the cell surface of BALL-1 play a crucial role in the induction of the anti-tumor activity. By analysis using mAbs against human leukocytes, we found that depletion of CD11b, CD16, and CD56-positive cells resulted in decreased anti-tumor activity, suggesting that the main effector cells in the BALL-1-induced anti-tumor activity were natural killer (NK) cells. The present results thus raise the possibility that BALL-1, probably via membrane glycoproteins, modulates NK cell-mediated anti-tumor activity. PMID:9617349

  5. Functional activity maps based on significance measures and Independent Component Analysis.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Murcia, F J; Górriz, J M; Ramírez, J; Puntonet, C G; Illán, I A

    2013-07-01

    The use of functional imaging has been proven very helpful for the process of diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's Disease (AD). In many cases, the analysis of these images is performed by manual reorientation and visual interpretation. Therefore, new statistical techniques to perform a more quantitative analysis are needed. In this work, a new statistical approximation to the analysis of functional images, based on significance measures and Independent Component Analysis (ICA) is presented. After the images preprocessing, voxels that allow better separation of the two classes are extracted, using significance measures such as the Mann-Whitney-Wilcoxon U-Test (MWW) and Relative Entropy (RE). After this feature selection step, the voxels vector is modelled by means of ICA, extracting a few independent components which will be used as an input to the classifier. Naive Bayes and Support Vector Machine (SVM) classifiers are used in this work. The proposed system has been applied to two different databases. A 96-subjects Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) database from the "Virgen de las Nieves" Hospital in Granada, Spain, and a 196-subjects Positron Emission Tomography (PET) database from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI). Values of accuracy up to 96.9% and 91.3% for SPECT and PET databases are achieved by the proposed system, which has yielded many benefits over methods proposed on recent works.

  6. Boosting of activity enhancement of K(+)-responsive quadruplex hammerhead ribozyme.

    PubMed

    Yamaoki, Yudai; Mashima, Tsukasa; Nagata, Takashi; Katahira, Masato

    2015-04-01

    Two second-generation quadruplex hammerhead ribozymes, whose activity enhances in response to K(+)via quadruplex formation of embedded r(GGA)3GG, were developed. Different strategies were applied to suppress basal activity when K(+) is absent. As a result, the activity enhancement upon the addition of K(+) has reached as high as 21-fold. PMID:25727931

  7. Treponema denticola cystalysin exhibits significant alanine racemase activity accompanied by transamination: mechanistic implications.

    PubMed Central

    Bertoldi, Mariarita; Cellini, Barbara; Paiardini, Alessandro; Di Salvo, Martino; Borri Voltattorni, Carla

    2003-01-01

    To obtain information on the reaction specificity of cystalysin from the spirochaete bacterium Treponema denticola, the interaction with L- and D-alanine has been investigated. Binding of both alanine enantiomers leads to the appearance of an external aldimine absorbing at 429 nm and of a band absorbing at 498 nm, indicative of a quinonoid species. Racemization and transamination reactions were observed to occur with both alanine isomers as substrates. The steady-state kinetic parameters for racemization, k (cat) and K (m), for L-alanine are 1.05+/-0.03 s(-1) and 10+/-1 mM respectively, whereas those for D-alanine are 1.4+/-0.1 s(-1) and 10+/-1 mM. During the reaction of cystalysin with L- or D-alanine, a time-dependent loss of beta-elimination activity occurs concomitantly with the conversion of the pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP) coenzyme into pyridoxamine 5'-phosphate (PMP). The catalytic efficiency of the half-transamination of L-alanine is found to be 5.3x10(-5) mM(-1) x s(-1), 5-fold higher when compared with that of D-alanine. The partition ratio between racemization and half-transamination reactions is 2.3x10(3) for L-alanine and 1.4x10(4) for D-alanine. The pH dependence of the kinetic parameters for both the reactions shows that the enzyme possesses a single ionizing residue with p K values of 6.5-6.6, which must be unprotonated for catalysis. Addition of pyruvate converts the PMP form of the enzyme back into the PLP form and causes the concomitant recovery of beta-elimination activity. In contrast with other PLP enzymes studied so far, but similar to alanine racemases, the apoform of the enzyme abstracted tritium from C4' of both (4' S)- and (4' R)-[4'-(3)H]PMP in the presence of pyruvate. Together with molecular modelling of the putative binding sites of L- and D-alanine at the active site of the enzyme, the implications of these studies for the mechanisms of the side reactions catalysed by cystalysin are discussed. PMID:12519070

  8. Engineered Expression Vectors Significantly Enhanced the Production of 2-Keto-D-gluconic Acid by Gluconobacter oxidans.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yuan-yuan; Li, Ke-fei; Lin, Jin-ping; Yang, Sheng-li; Wei, Dong-zhi

    2015-06-10

    2-Keto-D-gluconic acid (2KGA), a precursor of the important food antioxidant erythorbic acid, can be produced by Gluconobacter oxidans. To genetically engineer G. oxidans for improved 2KGA production, six new expression vectors with increased copy numbers based on pBBR1MCS-5 were constructed via rational mutagenesis. The utility of the mutant vectors was demonstrated by the increased ga2dh mRNA abundance, enzyme activity, and 2KGA production when the ga2dh gene was overexpressed using these vectors. Among the obtained constructs, G. oxidans/pBBR-3510-ga2dh displayed the highest oxidative activity toward gluconic acid (GA). In a batch biotransformation process, the G. oxidans/pBBR-3510-ga2dh strain exhibited 2KGA productivity (0.63 g/g CWW/h) higher than that obtained using strain G. oxidans/pBBR-ga2dh (0.40 g/g CWW/h). When sufficient oxygen was supplied during the biotransformation, up to 480 g/L GA was exhausted in 45 h by the G. oxidans/pBBR-3510-ga2dh strain and approximately 486 g/L 2KGA was produced, generating the productivity of 0.54 g/g CWW/h.

  9. [Mononuclear phagocytes in the cerebrospinal fluid. Studies on the clinical significance and factors of activation].

    PubMed

    Weitbrecht, W U

    1984-09-27

    Examination of 1050 cerebrospinal fluid samples showed, that mononuclear phagocytes contribute only slightly to the explanation of affections of the CNS except they are containing specific particles e.g. iron. Further investigations on patients with concussion, herniation of the intervertebral disk and cerebral infarction turned out, that the relative proportion of mononuclear phagocytes and qualitative cytological changes correlate with the extent of the CNS lesion. Phagocytosis of India ink was studied dependent on milieu and different mediators. Phagocytosis correlates with alpha-1-glycoproteid and the relative part of mononuclear phagocytes in cerebrospinal fluid. It depends on pH, various ions and mediators (adrenalin, histamine, prostaglandines, cAMP, cGMP). DNA-contents of the nucleus was measured by cytophotometria. No signs of proliferation (tetraploidia) were found. The slightly increased contents of nuclear DNA of some phagocytes was interpreted as a metabolically active DNA.

  10. Preparation and characterization of quaternary ammonium chitosan hydrogel with significant antibacterial activity.

    PubMed

    Fan, Lihong; Yang, Jing; Wu, Huan; Hu, Zhihai; Yi, Jiayan; Tong, Jun; Zhu, Xiaoming

    2015-08-01

    Quaternary ammonium chitosan (HACC)/polyvinyl alcohol (PVA)/polyethylene oxide (PEO) hydrogels were prepared using gamma radiation. The chemical structure of the hydrogels was characterized using FT-IR. The results revealed that HACC, PVA and PEO were perfectly compatible and interacted via the hydrogen bonds. As revealed by SEM, scaffolds with a homogeneous interconnected pore structure were obtained after lyophilizing the hydrogels. The influence of different radiation doses and weight ratios on properties including gel content, swelling ability, water evaporation rate and mechanical properties were investigated. It indicated that the hydrogels had the good swelling ability, water evaporation rate and mechanical properties. In vitro antibacterial activity assessment, the hydrogels exhibited a pronounced inhibitory effect against two bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli). Therefore, the hydrogels showed a promising potential to be applied as wound dressing. PMID:25895959

  11. Does small-bodied salmon spawning activity enhance streambed mobility?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hassan, Marwan A.; Tonina, Daniele; Buxton, Todd H.

    2015-09-01

    Female salmonids bury and lay their eggs in streambeds by digging a pit, which is then covered with sediment from a second pit that is dug immediately upstream. The spawning process alters streambed topography, winnows fine sediment, and mixes sediment in the active layer. The resulting egg nests (redds) contain coarser and looser sediments than those of unspawned streambed areas, and display a dune-like shape with an amplitude and length that vary with fish size, substrate conditions, and flow conditions. Redds increase local bed surface roughness (<10-1 channel width, W), but may reduce the size of macro bedforms by eroding reach-scale topography (100-101W). Research has suggested that spawning may increase flow resistance due to redd form drag, resulting in lower grain shear stress and less particle mobility. Spawning, also prevents streambed armoring by mixing surface and subsurface material, potentially increasing particle mobility. Here we use two-dimensional hydraulic modeling with detailed prespawning and postspawning bathymetries and field observations to test the effect of spawning by small-bodied salmonids on sediment transport. Our results show that topographical roughness from small salmon redds has negligible effects on shear stress at the reach-unit scale, and limited effects at the local scale. Conversely, results indicate sediment mixing reduces armoring and enhances sediment mobility, which increases potential bed load transport by subsequent floods. River restoration in fish-bearing streams should take into consideration the effects of redd excavation on channel stability. This is particularly important for streams that historically supported salmonids and are the focus of habitat restoration actions.

  12. Epigenetic signature and enhancer activity of the human APOE gene.

    PubMed

    Yu, Chang-En; Cudaback, Eiron; Foraker, Jessica; Thomson, Zachary; Leong, Lesley; Lutz, Franziska; Gill, James Anthony; Saxton, Aleen; Kraemer, Brian; Navas, Patrick; Keene, C Dirk; Montine, Thomas; Bekris, Lynn M

    2013-12-15

    The human apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene plays an important role in lipid metabolism. It has three common genetic variants, alleles ε2/ε3/ε4, which translate into three protein isoforms of apoE2, E3 and E4. These isoforms can differentially influence total serum cholesterol levels; therefore, APOE has been linked with cardiovascular disease. Additionally, its ε4 allele is strongly associated with the risk of Alzheimer's disease (AD), whereas the ε2 allele appears to have a modest protective effect for AD. Despite decades of research having illuminated multiple functional differences among the three apoE isoforms, the precise mechanisms through which different APOE alleles modify diseases risk remain incompletely understood. In this study, we examined the genomic structure of APOE in search for properties that may contribute novel biological consequences to the risk of disease. We identify one such element in the ε2/ε3/ε4 allele-carrying 3'-exon of APOE. We show that this exon is imbedded in a well-defined CpG island (CGI) that is highly methylated in the human postmortem brain. We demonstrate that this APOE CGI exhibits transcriptional enhancer/silencer activity. We provide evidence that this APOE CGI differentially modulates expression of genes at the APOE locus in a cell type-, DNA methylation- and ε2/ε3/ε4 allele-specific manner. These findings implicate a novel functional role for a 3'-exon CGI and support a modified mechanism of action for APOE in disease risk, involving not only the protein isoforms but also an epigenetically regulated transcriptional program at the APOE locus driven by the APOE CGI.

  13. Epigenetic signature and enhancer activity of the human APOE gene

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Chang-En; Cudaback, Eiron; Foraker, Jessica; Thomson, Zachary; Leong, Lesley; Lutz, Franziska; Gill, James Anthony; Saxton, Aleen; Kraemer, Brian; Navas, Patrick; Keene, C. Dirk; Montine, Thomas; Bekris, Lynn M.

    2013-01-01

    The human apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene plays an important role in lipid metabolism. It has three common genetic variants, alleles ɛ2/ɛ3/ɛ4, which translate into three protein isoforms of apoE2, E3 and E4. These isoforms can differentially influence total serum cholesterol levels; therefore, APOE has been linked with cardiovascular disease. Additionally, its ɛ4 allele is strongly associated with the risk of Alzheimer's disease (AD), whereas the ɛ2 allele appears to have a modest protective effect for AD. Despite decades of research having illuminated multiple functional differences among the three apoE isoforms, the precise mechanisms through which different APOE alleles modify diseases risk remain incompletely understood. In this study, we examined the genomic structure of APOE in search for properties that may contribute novel biological consequences to the risk of disease. We identify one such element in the ɛ2/ɛ3/ɛ4 allele-carrying 3′-exon of APOE. We show that this exon is imbedded in a well-defined CpG island (CGI) that is highly methylated in the human postmortem brain. We demonstrate that this APOE CGI exhibits transcriptional enhancer/silencer activity. We provide evidence that this APOE CGI differentially modulates expression of genes at the APOE locus in a cell type-, DNA methylation- and ɛ2/ɛ3/ɛ4 allele-specific manner. These findings implicate a novel functional role for a 3′-exon CGI and support a modified mechanism of action for APOE in disease risk, involving not only the protein isoforms but also an epigenetically regulated transcriptional program at the APOE locus driven by the APOE CGI. PMID:23892237

  14. Soil mulching significantly enhances yields and water and nitrogen use efficiencies of maize and wheat: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Qin, Wei; Hu, Chunsheng; Oenema, Oene

    2015-11-20

    Global crop yields are limited by water and nutrient availability. Soil mulching (with plastic or straw) reduces evaporation, modifies soil temperature and thereby affects crop yields. Reported effects of mulching are sometimes contradictory, likely due to differences in climatic conditions, soil characteristics, crop species, and also water and nitrogen (N) input levels. Here we report on a meta-analysis of the effects of mulching on wheat and maize, using 1310 yield observations from 74 studies conducted in 19 countries. Our results indicate that mulching significantly increased yields, WUE (yield per unit water) and NUE (yield per unit N) by up to 60%, compared with no-mulching. Effects were larger for maize than wheat, and larger for plastic mulching than straw mulching. Interestingly, plastic mulching performed better at relatively low temperature while straw mulching showed the opposite trend. Effects of mulching also tended to decrease with increasing water input. Mulching effects were not related to soil organic matter content. In conclusion, soil mulching can significantly increase maize and wheat yields, WUE and NUE, and thereby may contribute to closing the yield gap between attainable and actual yields, especially in dryland and low nutrient input agriculture. The management of soil mulching requires site-specific knowledge.

  15. Soil mulching significantly enhances yields and water and nitrogen use efficiencies of maize and wheat: a meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Wei; Hu, Chunsheng; Oenema, Oene

    2015-01-01

    Global crop yields are limited by water and nutrient availability. Soil mulching (with plastic or straw) reduces evaporation, modifies soil temperature and thereby affects crop yields. Reported effects of mulching are sometimes contradictory, likely due to differences in climatic conditions, soil characteristics, crop species, and also water and nitrogen (N) input levels. Here we report on a meta-analysis of the effects of mulching on wheat and maize, using 1310 yield observations from 74 studies conducted in 19 countries. Our results indicate that mulching significantly increased yields, WUE (yield per unit water) and NUE (yield per unit N) by up to 60%, compared with no-mulching. Effects were larger for maize than wheat, and larger for plastic mulching than straw mulching. Interestingly, plastic mulching performed better at relatively low temperature while straw mulching showed the opposite trend. Effects of mulching also tended to decrease with increasing water input. Mulching effects were not related to soil organic matter content. In conclusion, soil mulching can significantly increase maize and wheat yields, WUE and NUE, and thereby may contribute to closing the yield gap between attainable and actual yields, especially in dryland and low nutrient input agriculture. The management of soil mulching requires site-specific knowledge. PMID:26586114

  16. Soil mulching significantly enhances yields and water and nitrogen use efficiencies of maize and wheat: a meta-analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Wei; Hu, Chunsheng; Oenema, Oene

    2015-11-01

    Global crop yields are limited by water and nutrient availability. Soil mulching (with plastic or straw) reduces evaporation, modifies soil temperature and thereby affects crop yields. Reported effects of mulching are sometimes contradictory, likely due to differences in climatic conditions, soil characteristics, crop species, and also water and nitrogen (N) input levels. Here we report on a meta-analysis of the effects of mulching on wheat and maize, using 1310 yield observations from 74 studies conducted in 19 countries. Our results indicate that mulching significantly increased yields, WUE (yield per unit water) and NUE (yield per unit N) by up to 60%, compared with no-mulching. Effects were larger for maize than wheat, and larger for plastic mulching than straw mulching. Interestingly, plastic mulching performed better at relatively low temperature while straw mulching showed the opposite trend. Effects of mulching also tended to decrease with increasing water input. Mulching effects were not related to soil organic matter content. In conclusion, soil mulching can significantly increase maize and wheat yields, WUE and NUE, and thereby may contribute to closing the yield gap between attainable and actual yields, especially in dryland and low nutrient input agriculture. The management of soil mulching requires site-specific knowledge.

  17. Soil mulching significantly enhances yields and water and nitrogen use efficiencies of maize and wheat: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Qin, Wei; Hu, Chunsheng; Oenema, Oene

    2015-01-01

    Global crop yields are limited by water and nutrient availability. Soil mulching (with plastic or straw) reduces evaporation, modifies soil temperature and thereby affects crop yields. Reported effects of mulching are sometimes contradictory, likely due to differences in climatic conditions, soil characteristics, crop species, and also water and nitrogen (N) input levels. Here we report on a meta-analysis of the effects of mulching on wheat and maize, using 1310 yield observations from 74 studies conducted in 19 countries. Our results indicate that mulching significantly increased yields, WUE (yield per unit water) and NUE (yield per unit N) by up to 60%, compared with no-mulching. Effects were larger for maize than wheat, and larger for plastic mulching than straw mulching. Interestingly, plastic mulching performed better at relatively low temperature while straw mulching showed the opposite trend. Effects of mulching also tended to decrease with increasing water input. Mulching effects were not related to soil organic matter content. In conclusion, soil mulching can significantly increase maize and wheat yields, WUE and NUE, and thereby may contribute to closing the yield gap between attainable and actual yields, especially in dryland and low nutrient input agriculture. The management of soil mulching requires site-specific knowledge. PMID:26586114

  18. [Flipped classroom as a strategy to enhance active learning].

    PubMed

    Wakabayashi, Noriyuki

    2015-03-01

    This paper reviews the introduction of a flipped class for fourth grade dentistry students, and analyzes the characteristics of the learning method. In fiscal 2013 and 2014, a series of ten three-hour units for removable partial prosthodontics were completed with the flipped class method; a lecture video of approximately 60 minutes was made by the teacher (author) and uploaded to the university's e-learning website one week before each class. Students were instructed to prepare for the class by watching the streaming video on their PC, tablet, or smartphone. In the flipped class, students were not given a lecture, but were asked to solve short questions displayed on screen, to make a short presentation about a part of the video lecture, and to discuss a critical question related to the main subject of the day. An additional team-based learning (TBL) session with individual and group answers was implemented. The average individual scores were considerably higher in the last two years, when the flipped method was implemented, than in the three previous years when conventional lectures were used. The following learning concepts were discussed: the role of the flipped method as an active learning strategy, the efficacy of lecture videos and short questions, students' participation in the class discussion, present-day value of the method, cooperation with TBL, the significance of active learning in relation with the students' learning ability, and the potential increase in the preparation time and workload for students. PMID:26043555

  19. [Flipped classroom as a strategy to enhance active learning].

    PubMed

    Wakabayashi, Noriyuki

    2015-03-01

    This paper reviews the introduction of a flipped class for fourth grade dentistry students, and analyzes the characteristics of the learning method. In fiscal 2013 and 2014, a series of ten three-hour units for removable partial prosthodontics were completed with the flipped class method; a lecture video of approximately 60 minutes was made by the teacher (author) and uploaded to the university's e-learning website one week before each class. Students were instructed to prepare for the class by watching the streaming video on their PC, tablet, or smartphone. In the flipped class, students were not given a lecture, but were asked to solve short questions displayed on screen, to make a short presentation about a part of the video lecture, and to discuss a critical question related to the main subject of the day. An additional team-based learning (TBL) session with individual and group answers was implemented. The average individual scores were considerably higher in the last two years, when the flipped method was implemented, than in the three previous years when conventional lectures were used. The following learning concepts were discussed: the role of the flipped method as an active learning strategy, the efficacy of lecture videos and short questions, students' participation in the class discussion, present-day value of the method, cooperation with TBL, the significance of active learning in relation with the students' learning ability, and the potential increase in the preparation time and workload for students.

  20. Enhancement of Neuromuscular Activity by Natural Specimens and Cultured Mycelia of Cordyceps sinensis in Mice.

    PubMed

    Singh, K P; Meena, H S; Negi, P S

    2014-09-01

    The present study was aimed to evaluate the effect of natural specimen and laboratory cultured mycelia of Cordyceps sinensis on neuromuscular activity in mice. The powder of natural specimen and laboratory cultured Cordyceps sinensis was orally administered at the dose rate of 100, 300 and 500 mg/kg for 30 days. Natural specimen and in vitro propagated Cordyceps sinensis showed significant (P<0.05) enhancement in neuromuscular endurance and antidepressant activity at 300 and 500 mg/kg as compared to the control group. However, the fungus did not proved to be as effective as fluoxetine in exhibiting antidepressant action. Muscular endurance was determined on a Rota rod apparatus while antidepressant (mood elevating) activity was measured on a photoactometer in Swiss albino mice. The effects produced by both natural specimens and laboratory cultured Cordyceps sinensis were comparable and showed almost equal potency.

  1. Erythromycin ethosomal systems: physicochemical characterization and enhanced antibacterial activity.

    PubMed

    Godin, Biana; Touitou, Elka

    2005-07-01

    The rationale behind this work was that a permeation enhancing carrier could facilitate the transport of antibacterial molecules through the two biological barriers: stratum corneum of the skin and bacterial membrane/cell wall. To this end, erythromycin ethosomes (EE) were designed and characterized, and their antibacterial efficiency was evaluated in vitro and in vivo. TEM, CLSM, DLS, DSC and ultracentrifugation tests indicate that EE are small unilamellar soft vesicles encapsulating 78.6% erythromycin. The compositions were stable for at least one year at room temperature. In live/dead viability/cytotoxicity tests, EE systems were nontoxic to cultured 3T3 dermal fibroblasts. Susceptibility studies conducted on three bacterial strains (B. subtilis ATCC 6633, S. aureus ATCC 29213 and S. aureus clinically resistant to erythromycin) showed significantly larger inhibition zones for EE as compared to erythromycin in hydroethanolic solutions. Moreover, EE reduced erythromycin MIC as compared to control solution: from 2.5 to 1.25 microg/ml for S. aureus ATCC 29213 and from 12.5 to 5.0 microg/ml for clinically isolated resistant S. aureus strain. Ethosomal erythromycin applied to the skin of ICR mice inoculated with 10(7)cfu S. aurues ATCC 29213 resulted in complete inhibition of infection. On the contrary, when hydroethanolic solution of erythromycin was applied, deep dermal and subcutaneous abscesses developed within five days after challenge. On day seven, a similar number of S. aureus colonies (1.06x10(7) vs. 0.90x10(7) cfu/g tissue) were isolated from the untreated wounds or treated with hydroethanolic erythromycin. For these animals, histopathological examination showed necrosis, destroyed skin structures and dense infiltrates of neutrophils and macrophages. These findings show that ethosomes are efficient carriers for erythromycin delivery to bacteria localized within the deep skin strata for eradication of staphylococcal infections.

  2. A more robust model of the biodiesel reaction, allowing identification of process conditions for significantly enhanced rate and water tolerance.

    PubMed

    Eze, Valentine C; Phan, Anh N; Harvey, Adam P

    2014-03-01

    A more robust kinetic model of base-catalysed transesterification than the conventional reaction scheme has been developed. All the relevant reactions in the base-catalysed transesterification of rapeseed oil (RSO) to fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) were investigated experimentally, and validated numerically in a model implemented using MATLAB. It was found that including the saponification of RSO and FAME side reactions and hydroxide-methoxide equilibrium data explained various effects that are not captured by simpler conventional models. Both the experiment and modelling showed that the "biodiesel reaction" can reach the desired level of conversion (>95%) in less than 2min. Given the right set of conditions, the transesterification can reach over 95% conversion, before the saponification losses become significant. This means that the reaction must be performed in a reactor exhibiting good mixing and good control of residence time, and the reaction mixture must be quenched rapidly as it leaves the reactor.

  3. A more robust model of the biodiesel reaction, allowing identification of process conditions for significantly enhanced rate and water tolerance.

    PubMed

    Eze, Valentine C; Phan, Anh N; Harvey, Adam P

    2014-03-01

    A more robust kinetic model of base-catalysed transesterification than the conventional reaction scheme has been developed. All the relevant reactions in the base-catalysed transesterification of rapeseed oil (RSO) to fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) were investigated experimentally, and validated numerically in a model implemented using MATLAB. It was found that including the saponification of RSO and FAME side reactions and hydroxide-methoxide equilibrium data explained various effects that are not captured by simpler conventional models. Both the experiment and modelling showed that the "biodiesel reaction" can reach the desired level of conversion (>95%) in less than 2min. Given the right set of conditions, the transesterification can reach over 95% conversion, before the saponification losses become significant. This means that the reaction must be performed in a reactor exhibiting good mixing and good control of residence time, and the reaction mixture must be quenched rapidly as it leaves the reactor. PMID:24508659

  4. Genome-wide quantitative enhancer activity maps identified by STARR-seq.

    PubMed

    Arnold, Cosmas D; Gerlach, Daniel; Stelzer, Christoph; Boryń, Łukasz M; Rath, Martina; Stark, Alexander

    2013-03-01

    Genomic enhancers are important regulators of gene expression, but their identification is a challenge, and methods depend on indirect measures of activity. We developed a method termed STARR-seq to directly and quantitatively assess enhancer activity for millions of candidates from arbitrary sources of DNA, which enables screens across entire genomes. When applied to the Drosophila genome, STARR-seq identifies thousands of cell type-specific enhancers across a broad continuum of strengths, links differential gene expression to differences in enhancer activity, and creates a genome-wide quantitative enhancer map. This map reveals the highly complex regulation of transcription, with several independent enhancers for both developmental regulators and ubiquitously expressed genes. STARR-seq can be used to identify and quantify enhancer activity in other eukaryotes, including humans.

  5. Adult acclimation to combined temperature and pH stressors significantly enhances reproductive outcomes compared to short-term exposures.

    PubMed

    Suckling, Coleen C; Clark, Melody S; Richard, Joelle; Morley, Simon A; Thorne, Michael A S; Harper, Elizabeth M; Peck, Lloyd S

    2015-05-01

    This study examined the effects of long-term culture under altered conditions on the Antarctic sea urchin, Sterechinus neumayeri. Sterechinus neumayeri was cultured under the combined environmental stressors of lowered pH (-0.3 and -0.5 pH units) and increased temperature (+2 °C) for 2 years. This time-scale covered two full reproductive cycles in this species and analyses included studies on both adult metabolism and larval development. Adults took at least 6-8 months to acclimate to the altered conditions, but beyond this, there was no detectable effect of temperature or pH. Animals were spawned after 6 and 17 months exposure to altered conditions, with markedly different outcomes. At 6 months, the percentage hatching and larval survival rates were greatest in the animals kept at 0 °C under current pH conditions, whilst those under lowered pH and +2 °C performed significantly less well. After 17 months, performance was not significantly different across treatments, including controls. However, under the altered conditions urchins produced larger eggs compared with control animals. These data show that under long-term culture adult S. neumayeri appear to acclimate their metabolic and reproductive physiology to the combined stressors of altered pH and increased temperature, with relatively little measureable effect. They also emphasize the importance of long-term studies in evaluating effects of altered pH, particularly in slow developing marine species with long gonad maturation times, as the effects of altered conditions cannot be accurately evaluated unless gonads have fully matured under the new conditions. PMID:25491898

  6. Adult acclimation to combined temperature and pH stressors significantly enhances reproductive outcomes compared to short-term exposures.

    PubMed

    Suckling, Coleen C; Clark, Melody S; Richard, Joelle; Morley, Simon A; Thorne, Michael A S; Harper, Elizabeth M; Peck, Lloyd S

    2015-05-01

    This study examined the effects of long-term culture under altered conditions on the Antarctic sea urchin, Sterechinus neumayeri. Sterechinus neumayeri was cultured under the combined environmental stressors of lowered pH (-0.3 and -0.5 pH units) and increased temperature (+2 °C) for 2 years. This time-scale covered two full reproductive cycles in this species and analyses included studies on both adult metabolism and larval development. Adults took at least 6-8 months to acclimate to the altered conditions, but beyond this, there was no detectable effect of temperature or pH. Animals were spawned after 6 and 17 months exposure to altered conditions, with markedly different outcomes. At 6 months, the percentage hatching and larval survival rates were greatest in the animals kept at 0 °C under current pH conditions, whilst those under lowered pH and +2 °C performed significantly less well. After 17 months, performance was not significantly different across treatments, including controls. However, under the altered conditions urchins produced larger eggs compared with control animals. These data show that under long-term culture adult S. neumayeri appear to acclimate their metabolic and reproductive physiology to the combined stressors of altered pH and increased temperature, with relatively little measureable effect. They also emphasize the importance of long-term studies in evaluating effects of altered pH, particularly in slow developing marine species with long gonad maturation times, as the effects of altered conditions cannot be accurately evaluated unless gonads have fully matured under the new conditions.

  7. On Stellar Activity Enhancement Due to Interactions with Extrasolar Giant Planets.

    PubMed

    Cuntz; Saar; Musielak

    2000-04-20

    We present a first attempt to identify and quantify possible interactions between recently discovered extrasolar giant planets (and brown dwarfs) and their host stars, resulting in activity enhancement in the stellar outer atmospheres. Many extrasolar planets have masses comparable to or larger than Jupiter and are within a distance of 0.5 AU, suggesting the possibility of their significant influence on stellar winds, coronae, and even chromospheres. Beyond the well-known rotational synchronization, the interactions include tidal effects (in which enhanced flows and turbulence in the tidal bulge lead to increased magnetoacoustic heating and dynamo action) and direct magnetic interaction between the stellar and planetary magnetic fields. We discuss relevant parameters for selected systems and give preliminary estimates of the relative interaction strengths.

  8. Performance Enhancement of a Full-Scale Vertical Tail Model Equipped with Active Flow Control

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whalen, Edward A.; Lacy, Douglas; Lin, John C.; Andino, Marlyn Y.; Washburn, Anthony E.; Graff, Emilio; Wygnanski, Israel J.

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes wind tunnel test results from a joint NASA/Boeing research effort to advance active flow control (AFC) technology to enhance aerodynamic efficiency. A full-scale Boeing 757 vertical tail model equipped with sweeping jet actuators was tested at the National Full-Scale Aerodynamics Complex (NFAC) 40- by 80-Foot Wind Tunnel (40x80) at NASA Ames Research Center. The model was tested at a nominal airspeed of 100 knots and across rudder deflections and sideslip angles that covered the vertical tail flight envelope. A successful demonstration of AFC-enhanced vertical tail technology was achieved. A 31- actuator configuration significantly increased side force (by greater than 20%) at a maximum rudder deflection of 30deg. The successful demonstration of this application has cleared the way for a flight demonstration on the Boeing 757 ecoDemonstrator in 2015.

  9. Defect-induced enhanced photocatalytic activities of reduced α-Fe2O3 nanoblades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Honglei; Wang, Yiqian; Wang, Chao; Diao, Feiyu; Zhu, Wenhui; Mu, Peng; Yuan, Lu; Zhou, Guangwen; Rosei, Federico

    2016-07-01

    Bicrystalline α-Fe2O3 nanoblades (NBs) synthesized by thermal oxidation of iron foils were reduced in vacuum, to study the effect of reduction treatment on microstructural changes and photocatalytic properties. After the vacuum reduction, most bicrystalline α-Fe2O3 NBs transform into single-layered NBs, which contain more defects such as oxygen vacancies, perfect dislocations and dense pores. By comparing the photodegradation capability of non-reduced and reduced α-Fe2O3 NBs over model dye rhodamine B (RhB) in the presence of hydrogen peroxide, we find that vacuum-reduction induced microstructural defects can significantly enhance the photocatalytic efficiency. Even after 10 cycles, the reduced α-Fe2O3 NBs still show a very high photocatalytic activity. Our results demonstrate that defect engineering is a powerful tool to enhance the photocatalytic performance of nanomaterials.

  10. Dynamic measurement of extracellular opioid activity: status quo, challenges, and significance in rewarded behaviors.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Niall P

    2015-01-21

    Opioid peptides are the endogenous ligands of opioid receptors, which are also the molecular target of naturally occurring and synthetic opiates, such as morphine and heroin. Since their discovery in the 1970s, opioid peptides, which are found widely throughout the central nervous system and the periphery, have been intensely studied because of their involvement in pain and pleasure. Over the years, our understanding of opioid peptides has widened to cover a multitude of functions, including learning and memory, affective state, gastrointestinal transit, feeding, immune function, and metabolism. Unsurprisingly, aberrant opioid activity is implicated in numerous pathologies, including drug addiction, overeating, pain, depression, and obesity. To date, virtually all preclinical and clinical studies aimed at understanding the function of endogenous opioids have relied upon manipulating endogenous opioid fluxes using opioid receptor ligands or genetic manipulations of opioid receptors and endogenous opioids. Difficulties in directly monitoring endogenous opioid fluxes, particularly in the central nervous system, have presented a major obstacle to fully understanding endogenous opioid function. This review summarizes these challenges and offers suggestions for future goals while focusing on the neurobiology of reward, specifically drawing attention to studies that have succeeded in dynamically measuring opioid peptides. PMID:25585132

  11. Compositions comprising a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a bicyclic compound and uses thereof

    DOEpatents

    Quinlan, Jason; Xu, Feng; Sweeney, Matthew

    2016-10-04

    The present invention relates to compositions comprising: a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a bicyclic compound. The present invention also relates to methods of using the compositions.

  12. Compositions comprising a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a bicycle compound and uses thereof

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Feng; Sweeney, Matthew; Quinlan, Jason

    2015-06-16

    The present invention relates to compositions comprising: a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a bicyclic compound. The present invention also relates to methods of using the compositions.

  13. Compositions comprising a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a quinone compound and uses thereof

    DOEpatents

    Quinlan, Jason; Xu, Feng; Sweeney, Matthew

    2016-03-01

    The present invention relates to compositions comprising: a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a quinone compound. The present invention also relates to methods of using the compositions.

  14. Compositions comprising a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a heterocyclic compound and uses thereof

    DOEpatents

    Xu, Feng; Sweeney, Matthew; Quinlan, Jason

    2016-08-02

    The present invention relates to compositions comprising: a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a heterocyclic compound. The present invention also relates to methods of using the compositions.

  15. Compositions comprising a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a dioxy compound and uses thereof

    DOEpatents

    Sweeney, Matthew; Xu, Feng; Quinlan, Jason

    2016-07-19

    The present invention relates to compositions comprising: a polypeptide having cellulolytic enhancing activity and a dioxy compound. The present invention also relates to methods of using the compositions.

  16. Enhanced activity of the CREB co-activator Crtc1 in LKB1 null lung cancer.

    PubMed

    Komiya, T; Coxon, A; Park, Y; Chen, W-D; Zajac-Kaye, M; Meltzer, P; Karpova, T; Kaye, F J

    2010-03-18

    Activation of Crtc1 (also known as Mect1/Torc1) by a t(11;19) chromosomal rearrangement underlies the etiology of malignant salivary gland tumors. As LKB1 is a target for mutational inactivation in lung cancer and was recently shown to regulate hepatic Crtc2/CREB transcriptional activity in mice, we now present evidence suggesting disruption of an LKB1/Crtc pathway in cancer. Although Crtc1 is preferentially expressed in adult brain tissues, we observed elevated levels of steady-state Crtc1 in thoracic tumors. In addition, we show that somatic loss of LKB1 is associated with underphosphorylation of endogenous Crtc1, enhanced Crtc1 nuclear localization and enhanced expression of the Crtc prototypic target gene, NR4A2/Nurr1. Inhibition of NR4A2 was associated with growth suppression of LKB1 null tumors, but showed little effect on LKB1-wildtype cells. These data strengthen the role of dysregulated Crtc as a bona fide cancer gene, present a new element to the complex LKB1 tumorigenic axis, and suggest that Crtc genes may be aberrantly activated in a wider range of common adult malignancies.

  17. Drug and food-deprivation modulation of activity in rats given chronic dietary lead: significance of type of activity measure.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, B K; Kutscher, C L

    1981-09-01

    In Experiment 1, rats were given a 1% lead acetate diet from Day 100 of life to the termination of the experiment. After 82 days of lead feeding behavioral tests were started. Lead exposure increased wheel-turning hyperactivity produced by food deprivation and phenylethylamine injection. Lead produced no activity change in the unchallenged condition. In the open field, lead-exposure rats were less responsive to the stimulating action of PEA and amphetamine and to the sedating action of pentobarbital. In Experiment 2, the interaction of lead with food deprivation of PEA on wheel-turning was replicated in naive animals given only a 32-day exposure. Chemical analysis was made of tissues. Ingested lead entered the brain. Regional steady-state levels of brain norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin were not altered by lead treatment when measured following four days of starvation at a time when lead-induced behavioral change was distinct. It was concluded that pharmacological challenges on activity may be sensitive indicators of lead exposure, but the type of activity measure is critical. PMID:7291253

  18. Significant Correlation between TLR2 Agonist Activity and TNF-α Induction in J774.A1 Macrophage Cells by Different Medicinal Mushroom Products.

    PubMed

    Coy, Catherine; Standish, Leanna J; Bender, Geoff; Lu, Hailing

    2015-01-01

    In the US market, there is a variety of mushroom preparations available, even within the same species of mushroom. Nonetheless, little is known about whether species or the various extraction methods affect biological activity and potency of the immune modulatory activity of mushroom extracts. After discovering that protein-bound polysaccharide-K, a hot water extract from Trametes versicolor, was a potent Toll-like receptor (TLR)-2 agonist that stimulates both innate and adaptive immunity, this study was initiated to evaluate whether other medicinal mushroom products also have TLR2 agonist activity and immune-enhancing potential as measured by the induction of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α in J774.A1 murine macrophage cells. Furthermore, the products were divided by extraction method and species to determine whether these factors affect their immunomodulatory activity. The results showed that the majority (75%) of mushroom products tested had TLR2 agonist activity and that there was a significant correlation between TLR2 agonist activity and TNF-α induction potential in the mushroom products analyzed. In addition, the data demonstrated that hot water mushroom extracts are more potent than ground mushroom products in activating TLR2 and inducing TNF-α. These data provide evidence that extraction methods may affect the biological activity of mushroom products; thus, further studies are warranted to investigate the structural differences between various mushroom products.

  19. Significance of redox-active cysteines in human FAD synthase isoform 2.

    PubMed

    Miccolis, Angelica; Galluccio, Michele; Nitride, Chiara; Giancaspero, Teresa Anna; Ferranti, Pasquale; Iametti, Stefania; Indiveri, Cesare; Bonomi, Francesco; Barile, Maria

    2014-12-01

    FAD synthase (FMN:ATP adenylyl transferase, FMNAT or FADS, EC 2.7.7.2) is the last enzyme in the pathway converting riboflavin into FAD. In humans, FADS is localized in different subcellular compartments and exists in different isoforms. Isoform 2 (490-amino acids) is organized in two domains: the 3'-phosphoadenosine-5'-phosphosulfate (PAPS) reductase domain, that is the FAD-forming catalytic domain, and one resembling a molybdopterin-binding (MPTb) domain, with a hypothetical regulatory role. hFADS2 contains ten Cys residues, seven of which located in the PAPS reductase domain, with a possible involvement either in FAD synthesis or in FAD delivery to cognate apo-flavoproteins. A homology model of the PAPS reductase domain of hFADS2 revealed a co-ordinated network among the Cys residues in this domain. In this model, C312 and C303 are very close to the flavin substrate, consistent with a significantly lowered FAD synthesis rate in C303A and C312A mutants. FAD synthesis is also inhibited by thiol-blocking reagents, suggesting the involvement of free cysteines in the hFADS2 catalytic cycle. Mass spectrometry measurements and titration with thiol reagents on wt hFADS2 and on several individual cysteine/alanine mutants allowed us to detect two stably reduced cysteines (C139 and C241, one for each protein domain), two stable disulfide bridges (C399-C402, C303-C312, both in the PAPS domain), and two unstable disulfides (C39-C50; C440-C464). Whereas the C39-C50 unstable disulfide is located in the MPTb domain and appears to have no catalytic relevance, a cysteine-based redox switch may involve formation and breakdown of a disulfide between C440 and C464 in the PAPS domain. PMID:25135855

  20. The significance of different health institutions and their respective contributions of active pharmaceutical ingredients to wastewater.

    PubMed

    Herrmann, Manuel; Olsson, Oliver; Fiehn, Rainer; Herrel, Markus; Kümmerer, Klaus

    2015-12-01

    Active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) have been frequently found in the environment. It is, however, still not quite clear who is mainly responsible for API emissions. Hospitals have been considered to be the main contributing point sources for wastewater (WW) discharge of APIs. However, recent studies have shown that the contribution of hospitals to the input of APIs into the aquatic environment is quite low. Due to demographic change and the increase of psychiatric diseases, health institutions (HIs) such as psychiatric hospitals and nursing homes are likely to be important sources as well, but no data is available in this respect. This study aims to assess the impact of HIs and to provide a methodology to measure their respective contributions. Drawing on pharmaceutical consumption data for the years 2010, 2011, and 2012, this study identified API usage patterns for a psychiatric hospital (146 beds), a nursing home (286 inhabitants), and a general hospital (741 beds), the latter of which comprises three separate locations. All the HIs are located in two sub-regions of a county district with about 400,000 citizens in southwestern Germany. A selection of neurological drugs was quantified in the sewer of these facilities to evaluate the correlation between consumption and emission. The API contribution of HIs was assessed by comparing the specific consumption in the facilities with the consumption in households, expressed as the emission potential (IEP). The study shows that the usage patterns of APIs in the psychiatric hospital and the nursing home were different from the general hospital. Neurological drugs such as anticonvulsants, psycholeptics, and psychoanaleptics were mainly consumed in the psychiatric hospital and the nursing home (74% and 65%, respectively). Predicted and average measured concentrations in the effluent of the investigated HIs differed mostly by less than one order of magnitude. Therefore, the consumption-based approach is a useful method

  1. The significance of different health institutions and their respective contributions of active pharmaceutical ingredients to wastewater.

    PubMed

    Herrmann, Manuel; Olsson, Oliver; Fiehn, Rainer; Herrel, Markus; Kümmerer, Klaus

    2015-12-01

    Active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) have been frequently found in the environment. It is, however, still not quite clear who is mainly responsible for API emissions. Hospitals have been considered to be the main contributing point sources for wastewater (WW) discharge of APIs. However, recent studies have shown that the contribution of hospitals to the input of APIs into the aquatic environment is quite low. Due to demographic change and the increase of psychiatric diseases, health institutions (HIs) such as psychiatric hospitals and nursing homes are likely to be important sources as well, but no data is available in this respect. This study aims to assess the impact of HIs and to provide a methodology to measure their respective contributions. Drawing on pharmaceutical consumption data for the years 2010, 2011, and 2012, this study identified API usage patterns for a psychiatric hospital (146 beds), a nursing home (286 inhabitants), and a general hospital (741 beds), the latter of which comprises three separate locations. All the HIs are located in two sub-regions of a county district with about 400,000 citizens in southwestern Germany. A selection of neurological drugs was quantified in the sewer of these facilities to evaluate the correlation between consumption and emission. The API contribution of HIs was assessed by comparing the specific consumption in the facilities with the consumption in households, expressed as the emission potential (IEP). The study shows that the usage patterns of APIs in the psychiatric hospital and the nursing home were different from the general hospital. Neurological drugs such as anticonvulsants, psycholeptics, and psychoanaleptics were mainly consumed in the psychiatric hospital and the nursing home (74% and 65%, respectively). Predicted and average measured concentrations in the effluent of the investigated HIs differed mostly by less than one order of magnitude. Therefore, the consumption-based approach is a useful method

  2. Significance of an Active Volcanic Front in the Far Western Aleutian Arc

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yogodzinski, G. M.; Kelemen, P. B.; Hoernle, K.

    2015-12-01

    Discovery of a volcanic front west of Buldir Volcano, the western-most emergent Aleutian volcano, demonstrates that the surface expression of Aleutian volcanism falls below sea level just west of 175.9° E longitude, but is otherwise continuous from mainland Alaska to Kamchatka. The newly discovered sites of western Aleutian seafloor volcanism are the Ingenstrem Depression, a 60 km-long structural depression just west of Buldir, and an unnamed area 300 km further west, referred to as the Western Cones. These locations fall along a volcanic front that stretches from Buldir to Piip Seamount near the Komandorsky Islands. Western Aleutian seafloor volcanic rocks include large quantities of high-silica andesite and dacite, which define a highly calc-alkaline igneous series and carry trace element signatures that are unmistakably subduction-related. This indicates that subducting oceanic lithosphere is present beneath the westernmost Aleutian arc. The rarity of earthquakes below depths of 200 km indicates that the subducting plate is unusually hot. Some seafloor volcanoes are 6-8 km wide at the base, and so are as large as many emergent Aleutian volcanoes. The seafloor volcanoes are submerged in water depths >3000 m because they sit on oceanic lithosphere of the Bering Sea. The volcanic front is thus displaced to the north of the ridge of arc crust that underlies the western Aleutian Islands. This displacement, which developed since approximately 6 Ma when volcanism was last active on the islands, must be a consequence of oblique convergence in a system where the subducting plate and large blocks of arc crust are both moving primarily in an arc-parallel sense. The result is a hot-slab system where low subduction rates probably limit advection of hot mantle to the subarc, and produce a relatively cool and perhaps stagnant mantle wedge. The oceanic setting and highly oblique subduction geometry also severely limit rates of sediment subduction, so the volcanic rocks, which

  3. [Microwave thermal remediation of soil contaminated with crude oil enhanced by granular activated carbon].

    PubMed

    Li, Da-Wei; Zhang, Yao-Bin; Quan, Xie; Zhao, Ya-Zhi

    2009-02-15

    The advantage of rapid, selective and simultaneous heating of microwave heating technology was taken to remediate the crude oil-contaminated soil rapidly and to recover the oil contaminant efficiently. The contaminated soil was processed in the microwave field with addition of granular activated carbon (GAC), which was used as strong microwave absorber to enhance microwave heating of the soil mixture to remove the oil contaminant and recover it by a condensation system. The influences of some process parameters on the removal of the oil contaminant and the oil recovery in the remediation process were investigated. The results revealed that, under the condition of 10.0% GAC, 800 W microwave power, 0.08 MPa absolute pressure and 150 mL x min(-1) carrier gas (N2) flow-rate, more than 99% oil removal could be obtained within 15 min using this microwave thermal remediation enhanced by GAC; at the same time, about 91% of the oil contaminant could be recovered without significant changes in chemical composition. In addition, the experiment results showed that GAC can be reused in enhancing microwave heating of soil without changing its enhancement efficiency obviously.

  4. Structure-activity relationships in gold nanoparticle dimers and trimers for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Wustholz, Kristin L; Henry, Anne-Isabelle; McMahon, Jeffrey M; Freeman, R Griffith; Valley, Nicholas; Piotti, Marcelo E; Natan, Michael J; Schatz, George C; Van Duyne, Richard P

    2010-08-11

    Understanding the detailed relationship between nanoparticle structure and activity remains a significant challenge for the field of surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy. To this end, the structural and optical properties of individual plasmonic nanoantennas comprised of Au nanoparticle assemblies that are coated with organic reporter molecules and encapsulated by a SiO(2) shell have been determined using correlated transmission electron microscopy (TEM), dark-field Rayleigh scattering microscopy, surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) microscopy, and finite element method (FEM) calculations. The distribution of SERS enhancement factors (EFs) for a structurally and optically diverse set of nanoantennas is remarkably narrow. For a collection of 30 individual nanoantennas ranging from dimers to heptamers, the EFs vary by less than 2 orders of magnitude. Furthermore, the EFs for the hot-spot-containing nanoparticles are uncorrelated to aggregation state and localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) wavelength but are crucially dependent on the size of the interparticle gap. This study demonstrates that the creation of hot spots, where two particles are in subnanometer proximity or have coalesced to form crevices, is paramount to achieving maximum SERS enhancements.

  5. Enhancing lifestyle for individuals with haemophilia through physical activity and exercise: the role of physiotherapy.

    PubMed

    Wittmeier, K; Mulder, K

    2007-09-01

    For individuals with haemophilia, the benefits of many forms of physical activity outweigh their risks. Although activities with significant trauma risk should be avoided, persons who have haemophilia can participate in, enjoy and even excel in a variety of physical activities and sports. Both the National Hemophilia Foundation and the World Foundation of Hemophilia have produced documents to guide individuals with haemophilia and their healthcare professionals, coaches and parents in developing physical activity programmes and participation in sports. Physical activity guidelines for promoting health benefits exist worldwide and can be incorporated into individualized exercise programmes to ensure that a person with haemophilia is not only choosing appropriate activities, but also improving overall health and preparing the body to manage haemophilia better. Physiotherapy treatment is paramount in helping individuals prevent, manage and optimally recover from bleeds. Furthermore, the physical therapist, along with the haemophilia care team, can assist in preparing an individual to begin or progress to a physical activity programme that enhances fitness level, body composition and overall well-being. This article presents the unique role of the physiotherapist in facilitating safe participation in quality physical activity in the context of risks, benefits and activity recommendations. Participation in physical activity from an early age is ideal to facilitate the development of body awareness and capability and to foster the adoption of a physically active lifestyle; however, it is never too late to start. Consistent participation in quality physical activity beginning at any age is central to managing haemophilia and, equally important, to achieving overall health and well-being.

  6. Enhancement of sludge reduction and methane production by removing extracellular polymeric substances from waste activated sludge.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Minh Tuan; Mohd Yasin, Nazlina Haiza; Miyazaki, Toshiki; Maeda, Toshinari

    2014-12-01

    The management of waste activated sludge (WAS) recycling is a concern that affects the development of the future low-carbon society, particularly sludge reduction and biomass utilization. In this study, we investigated the effect of removing extracellular polymeric substances (EPS), which play important roles in the adhesion and flocculation of WAS, on increased sludge disintegration, thereby enhancing sludge reduction and methane production by anaerobic digestion. EPS removal from WAS by ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) significantly enhanced sludge reduction, i.e., 49 ± 5% compared with 27 ± 1% of the control at the end the digestion process. Methane production was also improved in WAS without EPS by 8881 ± 109 CH4 μmol g(-1) dry-weight of sludge. Microbial activity was determined by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and real-time polymerase chain reaction, which showed that the hydrolysis and acetogenesis stages were enhanced by pretreatment with 2% EDTA, with a larger methanogenic community and better methane production. PMID:25277968

  7. Acquisition of enhanced natural killer cell activity under anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Hsueh, C M; Lorden, J F; Hiramoto, R N; Ghanta, V K

    1992-01-01

    An increase in natural killer (NK) cell activity can be conditioned with a one trial learning paradigm to demonstrate the interaction between the central nervous system (CNS) and the immune system. In order to demonstrate learning possibilities during 'non-conscious' state, mice were anesthetized with a ketamin/rompun mixture and underwent one trial learning with odor cue as the conditioned stimulus (CS) preceding the unconditioned stimulus (US). The results indicated that mice that were exposed to camphor odor cue under the influence of anesthesia can associate the signal with the poly I:C unconditioned stimulus and were able to recall the conditioned response upon reexposure to the CS. Secondly, the conditioned association made in a conscious state can be recalled by exposure to the same olfactory odor cue in a 'non-conscious' state. The increase in the conditioned change in NK cell activity of both situations was significantly higher than the control group. The results demonstrate that learning can take place and the learned response can be recalled under the reduced awareness caused by anesthesia. The findings we report are unusual and novel in that they demonstrate that the CNS can learn new associations under conditions where the host is apparently unaware of the signals being linked. Anesthesia combined with the long interstimulus interval indicates that certain neuronal pathways in the CNS are receptive to second signals (elicited by the US) even when the second signal is separated by one day. This means the conditioned learning of a physiological response can take place unconsciously at a separate level and under situations where the host is totally unaware of the events which the brain is processing and linking as incoming information.

  8. Intracellular and Extracellular Carbonic Anhydrases Cooperate Non-enzymatically to Enhance Activity of Monocarboxylate Transporters*

    PubMed Central

    Klier, Michael; Andes, Fabian T.; Deitmer, Joachim W.; Becker, Holger M.

    2014-01-01

    Proton-coupled monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) are carriers of high-energy metabolites such as lactate, pyruvate, and ketone bodies and are expressed in most tissues. It has previously been shown that transport activity of MCT1 and MCT4 is enhanced by the cytosolic carbonic anhydrase II (CAII) independent of its catalytic activity. We have now studied the influence of the extracellular, membrane-bound CAIV on transport activity of MCT1/4, heterologously expressed in Xenopus oocytes. Coexpression of CAIV with MCT1 and MCT4 resulted in a significant increase in MCT transport activity, even in the nominal absence of CO2/HCO3−. CAIV-mediated augmentation of MCT activity was independent of the CAIV catalytic function, since application of the CA-inhibitor ethoxyzolamide or coexpression of the catalytically inactive mutant CAIV-V165Y did not suppress CAIV-mediated augmentation of MCT transport activity. The interaction required CAIV at the extracellular surface, since injection of CAIV protein into the oocyte cytosol did not augment MCT transport function. The effects of cytosolic CAII (injected as protein) and extracellular CAIV (expressed) on MCT transport activity, were additive. Our results suggest that intra- and extracellular carbonic anhydrases can work in concert to ensure rapid shuttling of metabolites across the cell membrane. PMID:24338019

  9. Enhanced leavening properties of baker's yeast by reducing sucrase activity in sweet dough.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Cui-Ying; Lin, Xue; Feng, Bing; Liu, Xiao-Er; Bai, Xiao-Wen; Xu, Jia; Pi, Li; Xiao, Dong-Guang

    2016-07-01

    Leavening ability in sweet dough is required for the commercial applications of baker's yeast. This property depends on many factors, such as glycolytic activity, sucrase activity, and osmotolerance. This study explored the importance of sucrase level on the leavening ability of baker's yeast in sweet dough. Furthermore, the baker's yeast strains with varying sucrase activities were constructed by deleting SUC2, which encodes sucrase or replacing the SUC2 promoter with the VPS8/TEF1 promoter. The results verify that the sucrase activity negatively affects the leavening ability of baker's yeast strains under high-sucrose conditions. Based on a certain level of osmotolerance, sucrase level plays a significant role in the fermentation performance of baker's yeast, and appropriate sucrase activity is an important determinant for the leavening property of baker's yeast in sweet dough. Therefore, modification on sucrase activity is an effective method for improving the leavening properties of baker's yeast in sweet dough. This finding provides guidance for the breeding of industrial baker's yeast strains for sweet dough leavening. The transformants BS1 with deleted SUC2 genetic background provided decreased sucrase activity (a decrease of 39.3 %) and exhibited enhanced leavening property (an increase of 12.4 %). Such a strain could be useful for industrial applications.

  10. Enhanced leavening properties of baker's yeast by reducing sucrase activity in sweet dough.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Cui-Ying; Lin, Xue; Feng, Bing; Liu, Xiao-Er; Bai, Xiao-Wen; Xu, Jia; Pi, Li; Xiao, Dong-Guang

    2016-07-01

    Leavening ability in sweet dough is required for the commercial applications of baker's yeast. This property depends on many factors, such as glycolytic activity, sucrase activity, and osmotolerance. This study explored the importance of sucrase level on the leavening ability of baker's yeast in sweet dough. Furthermore, the baker's yeast strains with varying sucrase activities were constructed by deleting SUC2, which encodes sucrase or replacing the SUC2 promoter with the VPS8/TEF1 promoter. The results verify that the sucrase activity negatively affects the leavening ability of baker's yeast strains under high-sucrose conditions. Based on a certain level of osmotolerance, sucrase level plays a significant role in the fermentation performance of baker's yeast, and appropriate sucrase activity is an important determinant for the leavening property of baker's yeast in sweet dough. Therefore, modification on sucrase activity is an effective method for improving the leavening properties of baker's yeast in sweet dough. This finding provides guidance for the breeding of industrial baker's yeast strains for sweet dough leavening. The transformants BS1 with deleted SUC2 genetic background provided decreased sucrase activity (a decrease of 39.3 %) and exhibited enhanced leavening property (an increase of 12.4 %). Such a strain could be useful for industrial applications. PMID:27041690

  11. Recommendations for health-enhancing physical activities in type 2 diabetes patients.

    PubMed

    Mynarski, Władysław; Cholewa, Jarosław; Rozpara, Michał; Borek, Zbigniew; Strojek, Krzysztof; Nawrocka, Agnieszka

    2015-08-01

    [Purpose] Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a disease of civilization with epidemiological coverage. An integral component of a comprehensive process of type 2 diabetes mellitus prevention and treatment is reasonably proportioned exercise. The aim of the study was to evaluate the weekly physical activity of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and healthy subjects with respect to recommendations of the American College of Sports Medicine and American Diabetes Association. [Subjects] The study involved 31 patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (treatment duration 9 ± 0.8) and 31 healthy people. [Methods] Physical activity levels were determined by the International Physical Activity Questionnaire. A χ(2) test was applied to determine the percentage of people who met recommendations. [Results] Analysis of the obtained results demonstrated that the intensity of physical activity in patients with diabetes was moderate or low. The men in the control group met the recommendations for standard health-related activities significantly more often than the patients with diabetes. In women, there was no such relationship, since most of the women were insufficiently physically active. [Conclusion] The conclusion to be drawn is that there is an urgent need to develop and implement effective programs to enhance physical activity among people at risk of diseases of civilization, including type 2 diabetes. PMID:26356173

  12. Computational Approaches for Mining GRO-Seq Data to Identify and Characterize Active Enhancers.

    PubMed

    Nagari, Anusha; Murakami, Shino; Malladi, Venkat S; Kraus, W Lee

    2017-01-01

    Transcriptional enhancers are DNA regulatory elements that are bound by transcription factors and act to positively regulate the expression of nearby or distally located target genes. Enhancers have many features that have been discovered using genomic analyses. Recent studies have shown that active enhancers recruit RNA polymerase II (Pol II) and are transcribed, producing enhancer RNAs (eRNAs). GRO-seq, a method for identifying the location and orientation of all actively transcribing RNA polymerases across the genome, is a powerful approach for monitoring nascent enhancer transcription. Furthermore, the unique pattern of enhancer transcription can be used to identify enhancers in the absence of any information about the underlying transcription factors. Here, we describe the computational approaches required to identify and analyze active enhancers using GRO-seq data, including data pre-processing, alignment, and transcript calling. In addition, we describe protocols and computational pipelines for mining GRO-seq data to identify active enhancers, as well as known transcription factor binding sites that are transcribed. Furthermore, we discuss approaches for integrating GRO-seq-based enhancer data with other genomic data, including target gene expression and function. Finally, we describe molecular biology assays that can be used to confirm and explore further the function of enhancers that have been identified using genomic assays. Together, these approaches should allow the user to identify and explore the features and biological functions of new cell type-specific enhancers. PMID:27662874

  13. Significant visible-light photocatalytic enhancement in Rhodamine B degradation of silver orthophosphate via the hybridization of N-doped graphene and poly(3-hexylthiophene).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yanlin; Xie, Churu; Gu, Feng Long; Wu, Honghai; Guo, Qiang

    2016-09-01

    Organic pollutants as typical water contaminants are potentially harmful to human health. In this study, we suggested that the novel Ag3PO4/N-doped graphene (NG)/Poly(3-hexylthiophene) (P3HT) composites can remove the organic dye Rhodamine B (RhB) from water. This Ag3PO4-based photocatalyst was synthesized via a facile method and subsequently characterized by XRD, SEM, TEM, XPS, Raman spectroscopy, PL spectroscopy, and UV-vis DRS. The photocatalytic activity of Ag3PO4/NG/P3HT composites is significantly higher than that of pristine Ag3PO4, Ag3PO4/NG, and Ag3PO4/P3HT for RhB degradation under visible light irradiation, especially the kinetic constant of Ag3PO4/NG/P3HT is more than 6 times of pristine Ag3PO4. The reactive oxygen species trapping experiments indicate that the degradation of RhB over the Ag3PO4/NG/P3HT composites mainly results from the holes oxidation and superoxide radical reduction. Besides, Ag3PO4/NG/P3HT composites exhibit better recyclability and stability than pristine Ag3PO4. Furthermore, the photocatalytic mechanism of Ag3PO4/NG/P3HT composites for RhB degradation under visible light was proposed as the synergistic effect of irradiated Ag3PO4, P3HT and NG sheets on the effective separation of photogenerated electron-hole pairs, and the enhancement of visible light absorbance.

  14. Differential biological significance of tissue-type and urokinase-type plasminogen activator in human breast cancer.

    PubMed Central

    Yamashita, J.; Ogawa, M.; Yamashita, S.; Nakashima, Y.; Saishoji, T.; Nomura, K.; Inada, K.; Kawano, I.

    1993-01-01

    Plasminogen activator (PA) is a serine protease existing in two forms known as tissue-type (t-PA) and urokinase-type (u-PA). To examine whether PA is related to the postoperative clinical course of human breast cancer, total PA activity, t-PA activity, u-PA activity, and immunoreactive t-PA were determined in tissue extracts from 144 breast cancer specimens. The patients were initially divided into four groups according to the postoperative clinical course: Group I (83 patients who are disease-free), Group II (20 patients whose first metastases were found only in bone), Group III (19 patients whose first metastases were found in both bone and lung), and Group IV (22 patients whose first metastases were found only in lung). Total PA activity was significantly lower in Groups, II, III and IV than in Group I. Both t-PA activity and t-PA antigen levels were also significantly lower in Groups II, III and IV than in Group I, while no significant difference was found in u-PA activity among these groups, indicating that low activity of total PA in Groups II, III and IV was due to a decrease in t-PA but not in u-PA. In the multivariate analyses, t-PA activity was found to be an independent prognostic factor for relapse-free survival. When four groups of patients were further analysed in terms of nodal status, both t-PA activity and antigen levels were markedly decreased in the node-negative Group II compared with the node-negative Groups III and IV or with the node-positive Groups II, III and IV. Of additional interest, u-PA activity was significantly higher in node-positive patients than in node-negative patients with any group. The clinico-pathologic analyses of the patients in this series showed that node involvement and lymphatic invasion were more frequently positive in Groups III and IV than in Groups I and II. When 144 breast cancers were categorised in terms of combinations of oestrogen receptor (ER) and progesterone receptor (PgR) status, breast cancers which were

  15. Voriconazole Enhances the Osteogenic Activity of Human Osteoblasts In Vitro through a Fluoride-Independent Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Kahtonna C.; Sanchez, Carlos J.; Niece, Krista L.; Wenke, Joseph C.

    2015-01-01

    Periostitis, which is characterized by bony pain and diffuse periosteal ossification, has been increasingly reported with prolonged clinical use of voriconazole. While resolution of clinical symptoms following discontinuation of therapy suggests a causative role for voriconazole, the biological mechanisms contributing to voriconazole-induced periostitis are unknown. To elucidate potential mechanisms, we exposed human osteoblasts in vitro to voriconazole or fluconazole at 15 or 200 μg/ml (reflecting systemic or local administration, respectively), under nonosteogenic or osteogenic conditions, for 1, 3, or 7 days and evaluated the effects on cell proliferation (reflected by total cellular DNA) and osteogenic differentiation (reflected by alkaline phosphatase activity, calcium accumulation, and expression of genes involved in osteogenic differentiation). Release of free fluoride, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) was also measured in cell supernatants of osteoblasts exposed to triazoles, with an ion-selective electrode (for free fluoride) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) (for VEGF and PDGF). Voriconazole but not fluconazole significantly enhanced the proliferation and differentiation of osteoblasts. In contrast to clinical observations, no increases in free fluoride levels were detected following exposure to either voriconazole or fluconazole; however, significant increases in the expression of VEGF and PDGF by osteoblasts were observed following exposure to voriconazole. Our results demonstrate that voriconazole can induce osteoblast proliferation and enhance osteogenic activity in vitro. Importantly, and in contrast to the previously proposed mechanism of fluoride-stimulated osteogenesis, our findings suggest that voriconazole-induced periostitis may also occur through fluoride-independent mechanisms that enhance the expression of cytokines that can augment osteoblastic activity. PMID:26324277

  16. Apoferritin Nanoparticle: A Novel and Biocompatible Carrier for Enzyme Immobilization with Enhanced Activity and Stability

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Youyu; Tang, Zhiwen; Wang, Jun; Wu, Hong J.; Lin, Chiann Tso; Lin, Yuehe

    2011-11-01

    Apoferritin is a nanostructured material with a uniform size and spherical structure, and it has excellent bio-compatibility. In this work, we report the use of apoferritin as a novel and biocompatible carrier for stabilizing enzymes and their activities. We used glucose oxidase (GOx) as a model enzyme. GOx was immobilized on the surface of the apoferritin through a green synthetic approach taking advantage of bioaffinity binding between streptavidin and biotin. As a result, a glucose oxidase-biotin/streptavidin/biotin-apoferritin conjugate (Apo-GOx) was prepared using streptavidin as a bridge. The synthesized Apo-GOx was characterized with transmission electron microscopy, ultraviolet, and fluorescence spectroscopy. The activity and stability of GOx on the surface of the apoferritin were studied in different environments, such as temperature, chemicals, and pH, in comparison with the biotinylated GOx (B-GOx). The results showed that the activity of GOx on the apoferritin surface was significantly enhanced. The thermal and chemical stability of the GOx on the apoferritin was also greatly improved compared to free B-GOx in a solution. It was found that the activity of the GOx on the apoferritin only lost 30% in comparison to a 70% loss of free B-GOx after a 2 h incubation at 50oC. There was almost no decrease in activity for the GOx on the apoferritin as compared to an 80% activity decrease for free B-GOx after 30 min incubation in a 5 M urea solution. Glucose detection was used as a model application for the enzyme immobilization method developed in this work. The GOx immobilized apoferritin nanoparticles exhibited high sensitivity for glucose detection with a detection limit of 3 nM glucose. This work offers a novel approach for immobilizing enzymes with enhanced stability and activity, and this method may find a number of applications, such as in enzyme catalysis, DNA assays and immunoassays.

  17. Enhanced Correlation of SMART Active Flap Rotor Loads

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kottapalli, Sesi

    2011-01-01

    This is a follow-on study to a 2010 correlation effort. Measured data from the SMART rotor test in the NASA Ames 40- by 80- Foot Wind Tunnel are compared with CAMRAD II calculations. As background, during the wind tunnel test, unexpectedly high inboard loads were encountered, and it was hypothesized at that time that due to changes in the flexbeams over the years, the flexbeam properties used in the analysis needed updating. Boeing Mesa, recently updated these properties. This correlation study uses the updated flexbeam properties. Compared to earlier studies, the following two enhancements are implemented: i) the inboard loads (pitchcase and flexbeam loads) correlation is included for the first time (reliable prediction of the inboard loads is a prerequisite for any future anticipated flight-testing); ii) the number of blade modes is increased to better capture the flap dynamics and the pitchcase-flexbeam dynamics. Also, aerodynamically, both the rolled-up wake model and the more complex, multiple trailer wake model are used, with the latter slightly improving the blade chordwise moment correlation. This sensitivity to the wake model indicates that CFD is needed. Three high-speed experimental cases, one uncontrolled free flap case and two commanded flap cases, are considered. The two commanded flap cases include a 2o flap deflection at 5P case and a 0o flap deflection case. For the free flap case, selected modifications to the HH-06 section flap airfoil pitching moment table are implemented. For the commanded 2o flap case, the experimental flap variation is approximately matched by increasing the analytical flap hinge stiffness. This increased flap hinge stiffness is retained for the commanded 0o flap case also, which is treated as a free flap case, but with larger flap hinge stiffness. The change in the mid-span and outboard loads correlation due to the updating of the flexbeam properties is not significant. Increasing the number of blade modes results in an

  18. Synthesis of nanocrystals of Zr-based metal-organic frameworks with csq-net: significant enhancement in the degradation of a nerve agent simulant.

    PubMed

    Li, Peng; Klet, Rachel C; Moon, Su-Young; Wang, Timothy C; Deria, Pravas; Peters, Aaron W; Klahr, Benjamin M; Park, Hea-Jung; Al-Juaid, Salih S; Hupp, Joseph T; Farha, Omar K

    2015-07-11

    The synthesis of nano-sized particles of NU-1000 (length from 75 nm to 1200 nm) and PCN-222/MOF-545 (length from 350 nm to 900 nm) is reported. The catalytic hydrolysis of methyl paraoxon was investigated as a function of NU-1000 crystallite size and a significant enhancement in the rate was observed for the nano-sized crystals compared to microcrystals.

  19. Enhancement of activation-induced cell death by fibronectin in murine CD4+ CD8+ thymocytes.

    PubMed Central

    Takayama, E; Kina, T; Katsura, Y; Tadakuma, T

    1998-01-01

    Development of T cells in the thymus is achieved through the interactions of thymocytes with their microenvironments. This study focused on the function of fibronectin (FN), a major extracellular matrix molecule in the thymus, in the cell death induced by activation via the T-cell antigen receptor. FN alone did not increase cell death in murine thymocytes above the baseline level, but it significantly enhanced the cell death induced by fixed anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody (mAb), especially when a high concentration of anti-CD3 mAb was used. DNA fragmentation increased in parallel with cell death, indicating that cell death was a result of the apoptosis. Fluorescence-activated cell sorter (FACS) analysis revealed that the activation-induced cell death (AICD) caused by anti-CD3 mAb alone, or by a combination of anti-CD3 mAb and FN, occurred selectively in CD4+ CD8+ thymocytes. Very late activation antigen (VLA)-4 and VLA-5 are two major ligands to FN on thymocytes. The expression of both ligands was investigated at different stages of thymocyte development. VLA-4 was predominantly expressed at the CD4- CD8- stage, and thereafter the expression was reduced, whereas VLA-5 was constantly expressed during maturation. Furthermore, the enhancing effect by FN was inhibited in the presence of the Gly-Arg-Gly-Asp-Ser-Pro (GRGDSP) peptide but not in the presence of the connecting segment-1 (CS-1) peptide, suggesting that enhancement of AICD observed in CD4+ CD8+ thymocytes is mediated through VLA-5. Images Figure 1 Figure 5 PMID:9893044

  20. Enhanced exo-inulinase activity and stability by fusion of an inulin-binding module.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Shun-Hua; Liu, Yuan; Zhao, Yu-Juan; Chi, Zhe; Chi, Zhen-Ming; Liu, Guang-Lei

    2016-09-01

    In this study, an inulin-binding module from Bacillus macerans was successfully fused to an exo-inulinase from Kluyveromyces marxianus, creating a hybrid functional enzyme. The recombinant exo-inulinase (rINU), the hybrid enzyme (rINUIBM), and the recombinant inulin-binding module (rIBM) were, respectively, heterologously expressed and biochemically characterized. It was found that both the inulinase activity and the catalytic efficiency (k cat/K m(app)) of the rINUIBM were considerably higher than those of rINU. Though the rINU and the rINUIBM shared the same optimum pH of 4.5, the optimum temperature of the rINUIBM (60 °C) was 5 °C higher than that of the rINU. Notably, the fused IBM significantly enhanced both the pH stability and the thermostability of the rINUIBM, suggesting that the rINUIBM obtained would have more extensive potential applications. Furthermore, the fusion of the IBM could substantially improve the inulin-binding capability of the rINUIBM, which was consistent with the determination of the K m(app). This meant that the fused IBM could play a critical role in the recognition of polysaccharides and enhanced the hydrolase activity of the associated inulinase by increasing enzyme-substrate proximity. Besides, the extra supplement of the independent non-catalytic rIBM could also improve the inulinase activity of the rINU. However, this improvement was much better in case of the fusion. Consequently, the IBM could be designated as a multifunctional domain that was responsible for the activity enhancement, the stabilization, and the substrate binding of the rINUIBM. All these features obtained in this study make the rINUIBM become an attractive candidate for an efficient inulin hydrolysis. PMID:27164865

  1. Enhanced exo-inulinase activity and stability by fusion of an inulin-binding module.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Shun-Hua; Liu, Yuan; Zhao, Yu-Juan; Chi, Zhe; Chi, Zhen-Ming; Liu, Guang-Lei

    2016-09-01

    In this study, an inulin-binding module from Bacillus macerans was successfully fused to an exo-inulinase from Kluyveromyces marxianus, creating a hybrid functional enzyme. The recombinant exo-inulinase (rINU), the hybrid enzyme (rINUIBM), and the recombinant inulin-binding module (rIBM) were, respectively, heterologously expressed and biochemically characterized. It was found that both the inulinase activity and the catalytic efficiency (k cat/K m(app)) of the rINUIBM were considerably higher than those of rINU. Though the rINU and the rINUIBM shared the same optimum pH of 4.5, the optimum temperature of the rINUIBM (60 °C) was 5 °C higher than that of the rINU. Notably, the fused IBM significantly enhanced both the pH stability and the thermostability of the rINUIBM, suggesting that the rINUIBM obtained would have more extensive potential applications. Furthermore, the fusion of the IBM could substantially improve the inulin-binding capability of the rINUIBM, which was consistent with the determination of the K m(app). This meant that the fused IBM could play a critical role in the recognition of polysaccharides and enhanced the hydrolase activity of the associated inulinase by increasing enzyme-substrate proximity. Besides, the extra supplement of the independent non-catalytic rIBM could also improve the inulinase activity of the rINU. However, this improvement was much better in case of the fusion. Consequently, the IBM could be designated as a multifunctional domain that was responsible for the activity enhancement, the stabilization, and the substrate binding of the rINUIBM. All these features obtained in this study make the rINUIBM become an attractive candidate for an efficient inulin hydrolysis.

  2. Platelets enhance activity of antimycotic substances against non-Aspergillus fumigatus Aspergillus species in vitro.

    PubMed

    Perkhofer, Susanne; Trappl, Krista; Striessnig, Barbara; Nussbaumer, Walter; Lass-Flörl, Cornelia

    2011-02-01

    Platelets are known to be part of haemostasis but they are also players in innate host defense. Recently, we observed that platelets attenuate the virulence of Aspergillus spp. in vitro. However, little is known about the antifungal effects of platelets in the presence of antimycotics against non-A. fumigatus Aspergillus species. We therefore investigated whether platelets increase the in vitro activity of amphotericin B, voriconazole, posaconazole and caspofungin against two clinical isolates each of Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus terreus and Aspergillus niger. The antifungal activity was evaluated by assessing germination percentages, hyphal elongation and hyphal damage by use of XTT. The combination of platelets plus amphotericin B significantly (P < 0.05) enhanced the reduction of germination percentage compared to either substance alone. Among triazoles, voriconazole exhibited significant effects with platelets for all tested aspergilli. Overall, these findings suggest that among the tested antimycotic substances, amphotericin B in combination with platelets has enhancing effects in reducing germination and hyphal elongation in the tested non-A. fumigatus Aspergillus species. These data indicate that platelets act beneficially with antimycotics in an early stage of fungal growth by blocking and/or delaying fungal germination and hyphal elongation; both crucial mechanisms in the development of invasive fungal disease.

  3. Brassinosteroid alleviates polychlorinated biphenyls-induced oxidative stress by enhancing antioxidant enzymes activity in tomato.

    PubMed

    Ahammed, Golam Jalal; Ruan, Yi-Ping; Zhou, Jie; Xia, Xiao-Jian; Shi, Kai; Zhou, Yan-Hong; Yu, Jing-Quan

    2013-03-01

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are persistent organic pollutants often found in the atmosphere. Phytoremediation of airborne PCBs is an emerging new concept to minimize potential human exposure. However, effects of atmospheric PCBs on plant growth, photosynthesis and antioxidant defence system are poorly understood area. Brassinosteroids have been reported to alleviate different abiotic stresses including organic pollutants-induced stress. Hence, we studied the effects of PCBs and 24-epibrassinolide (EBR) on biomass accumulation, photosynthetic machinery and antioxidant system in tomato plants. PCBs (0.4, 2.0 and 10 μg/l) mist spray significantly decreased dry weight, photosynthesis, chlorophyll contents in a dose dependent manner. Both stomatal and non-stomatal factors were involved in PCBs-induced photosynthetic inhibition. Likewise, the maximal photochemical efficiency of PSII (Fv/Fm), the quantum efficiency of PSII photochemistry (Φ(PSII)) and photochemical quenching coefficient were increasingly decreased by various levels of PCBs, suggesting an induction of photoinhibition. Increased accumulation of H(2)O(2) and O(2)(-) accompanied with high lipid peroxidation confirmed occurrence of oxidative stress upon PCBs exposure. Meanwhile, antioxidant enzymes activity was decreased following exposure to PCBs. Foliar application of EBR (100 nM) increased biomass, photosynthetic capacity, chlorophyll contents and alleviated photoinhibition by enhancing Fv/Fm, Φ(PSII) and qP. EBR significantly decreased harmful ROS accumulation and lipid peroxidation through the induction of antioxidant enzymes activity. Our results suggest a protective role of EBR against PCBs stress which may strengthen phytoremediation approaches by enhancing plant tolerance.

  4. Significant role of female sex hormones in cardiac myofilament activation in angiotensin II-mediated hypertensive rats.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Sulaksana; Woranush, Warunya; Wattanapermpool, Jonggonnee; Bupha-Intr, Tepmanas

    2014-07-01

    Ovariectomy leads to suppression of cardiac myofilament activation in healthy rats implicating the physiological essence of female sex hormones on myocardial contraction. However, the possible function of these hormones during pathologically induced myofilament adaptation is not known. In this study, sham-operated and ovariectomized female rats were chronically exposed to angiotensin II (AII), which has been shown to cause myocardial adaptation. In the shams, AII induced cardiac adaptation by increasing myofilament Ca(2+) sensitivity. Interestingly, this hypersensitivity was further enhanced in AII-infused ovariectomized rats. Ovariectomy increased the phosphorylation levels of cardiac tropomyosin, which may underlie the mechanism of hypersensitivity. On the other hand, AII infusion did not alter maximal tension that was suppressed after ovariectomy. This finding coincided with a comparable increase in β-isoform of myosin heavy chains in both ovariectomized groups. Together, it is conceivable that female sex hormones serve as predominant factors that regulate cardiac myofilament activation. Furthermore, they may prevent stress-induced myofilament maladaptation.

  5. Enhancement of alpha- and beta-galactosidase activity in Lactobacillus reuteri by different metal ions.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Salam A; Alazzeh, Awfa Y; Awaisheh, Saddam S; Song, Danfeng; Shahbazi, Abolghasem; AbuGhazaleh, Amer A

    2010-07-01

    The hydrolysis of oligosaccharides and lactose is of great importance to the food industry. Normally, oligosaccharides like raffinose, stachyose, and verbascose which are rich in different plants like soy bean are considered indigestible by the human gut. Moreover, many humans suffer from lactose intolerance due to the absence of effective enzyme that can digest lactose. alpha-Galactosidase can digest oligosaccharides like raffinose, while beta-galactosidases can hydrolyze lactose. Therefore, selection of microorganisms safe for human use and capable of producing high levels of enzymes becomes an attractive task. The objective of this study was to investigate the enhancement of alpha- and beta-galactosidase activity in Lactobacillus reuteri by different metal ions. Ten millimolar of Na(+), K(+), Fe(2+), and Mg(2+) and 1 mM of Mn(2+) were added separately to the growth culture of six strains of L. reuteri (CF2-7F, DSM20016, MF14-C, MM2-3, MM7, and SD2112). Results showed that L. reuteri CF2-7F had the highest alpha- and beta-galactosidase activity when grown in the medium with added Mn(2+) ions (22.7 and 19.3 Gal U/ml, respectively). 0.0274% of Mn(2+) ions lead to 27, 18% enhancement of alpha- and beta-galactosidase activity over the control group, and therefore, it could be added to the growth culture of CF2-7F to produce enhanced levels of alpha- and beta-galactosidase activity. The addition of Fe(2+) led to a significant (P < 0.01) decrease in the activity of both enzymes for most strains. This study shows that modified culture medium with that 0.0274% Mn(2+) can be used to promote the production for alpha- and beta-galactosidase in L. reuteri CF2-7F, which may lead to enhancement of alpha- and beta-galactosidase activity and have a good potential to be used in the food industry.

  6. Carbohydrate in the mouth enhances activation of brain circuitry involved in motor performance and sensory perception.

    PubMed

    Turner, Clare E; Byblow, Winston D; Stinear, Cathy M; Gant, Nicholas

    2014-09-01

    The presence of carbohydrate in the human mouth has been associated with the facilitation of motor output and improvements in physical performance. Oral receptors have been identified as a potential mode of afferent transduction for this novel form of nutrient signalling that is distinct from taste. In the current study oral exposure to carbohydrate was combined with a motor task in a neuroimaging environment to identify areas of the brain involved in this phenomenon. A mouth-rinsing protocol was conducted whilst carbohydrate (CHO) and taste-matched placebo (PLA) solutions were delivered and recovered from the mouths of 10 healthy volunteers within a double-blind, counterbalanced design. This protocol eliminates post-oral factors and controls for the perceptual qualities of solutions. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of the brain was used to identify cortical areas responsive to oral carbohydrate during rest and activity phases of a hand-grip motor task. Mean blood-oxygen-level dependent signal change experienced in the contralateral primary sensorimotor cortex was larger for CHO compared with PLA during the motor task when contrasted with a control condition. Areas of activation associated with CHO exclusively were observed over the primary taste cortex and regions involved in visual perception. Regions in the limbic system associated with reward were also significantly more active with CHO. This is the first demonstration that oral carbohydrate signalling can increase activation within the primary sensorimotor cortex during physical activity and enhance activation of neural networks involved in sensory perception.

  7. Enhanced colonic nitric oxide generation and nitric oxide synthase activity in ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease.

    PubMed Central

    Rachmilewitz, D; Stamler, J S; Bachwich, D; Karmeli, F; Ackerman, Z; Podolsky, D K

    1995-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that nitric oxide (NO.), the product of nitric oxide synthase in inflammatory cells, may play a part in tissue injury and inflammation through its oxidative metabolism. In this study the colonic generation of oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and nitric oxide synthase activity was determined in ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease. Colonic biopsy specimens were obtained from inflammatory bowel disease patients and from normal controls. Mucosal explants were cultured in vitro for 24 hours and NOx generation was determined. Nitric oxide synthase activity was monitored by the conversion of [3H]-L-arginine to citrulline. Median NOx generation by inflamed colonic mucosa of patients with active ulcerative colitis and Crohn's colitis was 4.2- and 8.1-fold respectively higher than that by normal human colonic mucosa. In ulcerative colitis and Crohn's colitis nitric oxide synthase activity was 10.0- and 3.8-fold respectively higher than in normal subjects. Colonic NOx generation is significantly decreased by methylprednisolone and ketotifen. The decrease in NOx generation by cultured colonic mucosa induced by methylprednisolone suggests that NO synthase activity is induced during the culture and the steroid effect may contribute to its therapeutic effect. Enhanced colonic NOx generation by stimulated nitric oxide synthase activity in ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease may contribute to tissue injury. PMID:7541008

  8. Enhanced dispersion of epicardial activation-recovery intervals at sites of histological inhomogeneity during regional cardiac ischaemia and reperfusion

    PubMed Central

    Gottwald, E; Gottwald, M; Dhein, S

    1998-01-01

    Objective—To examine how epicardial activation and repolarisation patterns change in the course of ischaemia, and how these changes are related to the underlying histological structures.
Methods—Langendorff perfused isolated rabbit hearts were submitted to 30 minutes of left anterior descending coronary artery occlusion followed by 30 minutes of reperfusion. A 256 channel epicardial map was plotted during the various experimental phases. Activation time points were determined as t(dU/dtmin) and repolarisation time points as t(dU/dtmax). From these data the local activation-recovery interval (ARI), its dispersion (SD of ARI), and the geometry of the activation spread could be analysed. After the experiments the hearts were processed histologically and the mapping data were projected onto histological slides.
Results—There was elevation of the ST segment within the occluded area, which recovered during reperfusion. Within this area, ARI was significantly shortened and its dispersion was maximally enhanced. The enhancement of dispersion was pronounced at sites of histological inhomogeneity like fat, connective tissue, or vessels. There was also a change in the preferential direction of activation spread within the occluded zone with a marked transverse propagation of the activation wavefront, whereas under normal conditions the activation followed the longitudinal fibre axis. In addition, the total activation time in the occluded area was significantly prolonged.
Conclusions—Ischaemia alters the local activation pattern with enhanced dispersion, especially at sites of histological irregularity, transverse shift of the activation waves, and a general slowing of conduction, which may explain the increased susceptibility to arrhythmia in hearts with enhanced histological irregularities—for example, an infarct or in multi-infarcted hearts, or after myocarditis. 

 Keywords: dispersion;  epicardial activation-recovery interval;  ischaemia PMID

  9. The non-Geldanamycin Hsp90 inhibitors enhanced the antifungal activity of fluconazole

    PubMed Central

    Li, Liping; An, Maomao; Shen, Hui; Huang, Xin; Yao, Xueya; Liu, Jian; Zhu, Fang; Zhang, Shiqun; Chen, Simin; He, Lijuan; Zhang, Jundong; Zou, Zui; Jiang, Yuanying

    2015-01-01

    The molecular chaperone heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) is highly conserved in eukaryotes and facilitates the correct folding, productive assembly and maturation of a diverse cellular proteins. In fungi, especially the most prevalent human fungal pathogen Candida albicans, Hsp90 influences development and modulates drug resistance. Here, we mainly explore the effect of non-Geldanamycin Hsp90 inhibitor HSP990 on the activity of fluconazole (FLC) against Candida albicans and investigate the underlying mechanism. We demonstrate that HSP990 has potent synergistic antifungal activity with FLC against FLC-resistant C. albicans through the checkerboard microdilution assay,agar diffusion tests and time-kill curves, and shows low cytotoxicity to human umbilical vein endothelial cells. Further study shows that the activity of FLC against C. albicans biofilm formation in vitro is significantly enhanced when used in combination with HSP990. In a murine model of disseminated candidiasis, the therapeutic efficacy of FLC is also enhanced by the pharmacological inhibition of C. albicans Hsp90 function with HSP990. Thus, the combined use of small molecule compound and existing antifungal drugs may provide a potential therapeutic strategy for fungal infectious disease. PMID:26885259

  10. Tex10 Coordinates Epigenetic Control of Super-Enhancer Activity in Pluripotency and Reprogramming

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Junjun; Huang, Xin; Shao, Ningyi; Zhou, Hongwei; Lee, Dung-Fang; Faiola, Francesco; Fidalgo, Miguel; Guallar, Diana; Saunders, Arven; Shliaha, Pavel V.; Wang, Hailong; Waghray, Avinash; Papatsenko, Dmitri; Sánchez-Priego, Carlos; Li, Dan; Yuan, Ye; Lemischka, Ihor R.; Shen, Li; Kelley, Kevin; Deng, Haiteng; Shen, Xiaohua; Wang, Jianlong

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Super-enhancers (SEs) are large clusters of transcriptional enhancers that are co-occupied by multiple lineage specific transcription factors driving expression of genes that define cell identity. In embryonic stem cells (ESCs), SEs are highly enriched for the core pluripotency factors Oct4, Sox2, and Nanog. In this study, we sought to dissect the molecular control mechanism of SE activity in pluripotency and reprogramming. Starting from a protein interaction network surrounding Sox2, we identified Tex10 as a key pluripotency factor that plays a functionally significant role in ESC self-renewal, early embryo development, and reprogramming. Tex10 is enriched at SEs in a Sox2-dependent manner and coordinates histone acetylation and DNA demethylation at SEs. Tex10 activity is also important for pluripotency and reprogramming in human cells. Our study therefore highlights Tex10 as a core component of the pluripotency network and sheds light on its role in epigenetic control of SE activity for cell fate determination. PMID:25936917

  11. Photocatalytic reduction synthesis of SrTiO3-graphene nanocomposites and their enhanced photocatalytic activity

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    SrTiO3-graphene nanocomposites were prepared via photocatalytic reduction of graphene oxide by UV light-irradiated SrTiO3 nanoparticles. Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy analysis indicates that graphene oxide is reduced into graphene. Transmission electron microscope observation shows that SrTiO3 nanoparticles are well assembled onto graphene sheets. The photocatalytic activity of as-prepared SrTiO3-graphene composites was evaluated by the degradation of acid orange 7 (AO7) under a 254-nm UV irradiation, revealing that the composites exhibit significantly enhanced photocatalytic activity compared to the bare SrTiO3 nanoparticles. This can be explained by the fact that photogenerated electrons are captured by graphene, leading to an increased separation and availability of electrons and holes for the photocatalytic reaction. Hydroxyl (·OH) radicals were detected by the photoluminescence technique using terephthalic acid as a probe molecule and were found to be produced over the irradiated SrTiO3 nanoparticles and SrTiO3-graphene composites; especially, an enhanced yield is observed for the latter. The influence of ethanol, KI, and N2 on the photocatalytic efficiency was also investigated. Based on the experimental results, ·OH, h+, and H2O2 are suggested to be the main active species in the photocatalytic degradation of AO7 by SrTiO3-graphene composites. PACS 61.46. + w; 78.67.Bf; 78.66.Sq PMID:25050089

  12. Glucose Enhances Basal or Melanocortin-Induced cAMP-Response Element Activity in Hypothalamic Cells.

    PubMed

    Breit, Andreas; Wicht, Kristina; Boekhoff, Ingrid; Glas, Evi; Lauffer, Lisa; Mückter, Harald; Gudermann, Thomas

    2016-07-01

    Melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH)-induced activation of the cAMP-response element (CRE) via the CRE-binding protein in hypothalamic cells promotes expression of TRH and thereby restricts food intake and increases energy expenditure. Glucose also induces central anorexigenic effects by acting on hypothalamic neurons, but the underlying mechanisms are not completely understood. It has been proposed that glucose activates the CRE-binding protein-regulated transcriptional coactivator 2 (CRTC-2) in hypothalamic neurons by inhibition of AMP-activated protein kinases (AMPKs), but whether glucose directly affects hypothalamic CRE activity has not yet been shown. Hence, we dissected effects of glucose on basal and MSH-induced CRE activation in terms of kinetics, affinity, and desensitization in murine, hypothalamic mHypoA-2/10-CRE cells that stably express a CRE-dependent reporter gene construct. Physiologically relevant increases in extracellular glucose enhanced basal or MSH-induced CRE-dependent gene transcription, whereas prolonged elevated glucose concentrations reduced the sensitivity of mHypoA-2/10-CRE cells towards glucose. Glucose also induced CRCT-2 translocation into the nucleus and the AMPK activator metformin decreased basal and glucose-induced CRE activity, suggesting a role for AMPK/CRTC-2 in glucose-induced CRE activation. Accordingly, small interfering RNA-induced down-regulation of CRTC-2 expression decreased glucose-induced CRE-dependent reporter activation. Of note, glucose also induced expression of TRH, suggesting that glucose might affect the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis via the regulation of hypothalamic CRE activity. These findings significantly advance our knowledge about the impact of glucose on hypothalamic signaling and suggest that TRH release might account for the central anorexigenic effects of glucose and could represent a new molecular link between hyperglycaemia and thyroid dysfunction. PMID:27144291

  13. Glucose Enhances Basal or Melanocortin-Induced cAMP-Response Element Activity in Hypothalamic Cells.

    PubMed

    Breit, Andreas; Wicht, Kristina; Boekhoff, Ingrid; Glas, Evi; Lauffer, Lisa; Mückter, Harald; Gudermann, Thomas

    2016-07-01

    Melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH)-induced activation of the cAMP-response element (CRE) via the CRE-binding protein in hypothalamic cells promotes expression of TRH and thereby restricts food intake and increases energy expenditure. Glucose also induces central anorexigenic effects by acting on hypothalamic neurons, but the underlying mechanisms are not completely understood. It has been proposed that glucose activates the CRE-binding protein-regulated transcriptional coactivator 2 (CRTC-2) in hypothalamic neurons by inhibition of AMP-activated protein kinases (AMPKs), but whether glucose directly affects hypothalamic CRE activity has not yet been shown. Hence, we dissected effects of glucose on basal and MSH-induced CRE activation in terms of kinetics, affinity, and desensitization in murine, hypothalamic mHypoA-2/10-CRE cells that stably express a CRE-dependent reporter gene construct. Physiologically relevant increases in extracellular glucose enhanced basal or MSH-induced CRE-dependent gene transcription, whereas prolonged elevated glucose concentrations reduced the sensitivity of mHypoA-2/10-CRE cells towards glucose. Glucose also induced CRCT-2 translocation into the nucleus and the AMPK activator metformin decreased basal and glucose-induced CRE activity, suggesting a role for AMPK/CRTC-2 in glucose-induced CRE activation. Accordingly, small interfering RNA-induced down-regulation of CRTC-2 expression decreased glucose-induced CRE-dependent reporter activation. Of note, glucose also induced expression of TRH, suggesting that glucose might affect the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis via the regulation of hypothalamic CRE activity. These findings significantly advance our knowledge about the impact of glucose on hypothalamic signaling and suggest that TRH release might account for the central anorexigenic effects of glucose and could represent a new molecular link between hyperglycaemia and thyroid dysfunction.

  14. Focus on Freshman: Basic Instruction Programs Enhancing Physical Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Curry, Jarred; Jenkins, Jayne M.; Weatherford, Jennifer

    2015-01-01

    Physical activity sharply decreases after different life stages, particularly high school graduation to beginning university education. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of a specifically designed university physical activity class, Exercise Planning for Freshman (EPF), on students' physical activity and group cohesion…

  15. ENHANCING FUNGICIDAL ACTIVITY OF FLUDIOXONIL BY DISRUPTING CELLULAR GLUTATHIONE HOMEOSTASIS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fungicidal activity of fludioxonil, a phenylpyrrole fungicide, is elevated by co-application with the aspirin/salicylic acid metabolite, 2,5-dihydroxybenzoic acid (2,5-DHBA). Fludioxonil fungicidal activity is potentiated through the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway regulating osmotic...

  16. A curcumin activated carboxymethyl cellulose-montmorillonite clay nanocomposite having enhanced curcumin release in aqueous media.

    PubMed

    Madusanka, Nadeesh; de Silva, K M Nalin; Amaratunga, Gehan

    2015-12-10

    A novel curcumin activated carboxymethylcellulose-montmorillonite nanocomposite is reported. A superabsorbent biopolymer; carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) was used as an emulsifier for curcumin which is a turmeric derived water insoluble polyphenolic compound with antibacterial/anti-cancer properties. Montmorillonite (MMT) nanoclay was incorporated in the formulation as a matrix material which also plays a role in release kinetics. It was observed that water solubility of curcumin in the nanocomposite has significantly increased (60% release within 2h and 30 min in distilled water at pH 5.4) compared to pure curcumin. The prepared curcumin activated carboxymethylcellulose-montmorillonite nanocomposite is suitable as a curcumin carrier having enhanced release and structural properties.

  17. Facile synthesis of polyaniline-modified CuS with enhanced adsorbtion and photocatalytic activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xiufang; Chen, Shaohua; Shuai, Ying

    2016-10-01

    Novel hierarchical polyaniline-modified CuS (PANI-CuS) has been synthesized by simple assembling PANI on the surface of flower-like CuS spheres. The PANI modification enhances the adsorption properties of flower-like CuS. The prepared PANI-CuS composites exhibit higher visible-light-driven photocatalytic activities in degradation of rhodamine B (RhB) than that of neat CuS. The unusual photocatalytic activity could be attributed to the great adsorptivity of dyes, the extended photoresponse range, and the high migration efficiency of photoinduced electrons, which may effectively suppress the charge recombination. This work not only provides a simple strategy for fabricating highly efficient and stable CuS-based composites, but also proves that these unique structures are excellent platforms for significantly improving their visible- light-driven photoactivities, holding great promise for their applications in the field of purifying polluted water resources.

  18. A curcumin activated carboxymethyl cellulose-montmorillonite clay nanocomposite having enhanced curcumin release in aqueous media.

    PubMed

    Madusanka, Nadeesh; de Silva, K M Nalin; Amaratunga, Gehan

    2015-12-10

    A novel curcumin activated carboxymethylcellulose-montmorillonite nanocomposite is reported. A superabsorbent biopolymer; carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) was used as an emulsifier for curcumin which is a turmeric derived water insoluble polyphenolic compound with antibacterial/anti-cancer properties. Montmorillonite (MMT) nanoclay was incorporated in the formulation as a matrix material which also plays a role in release kinetics. It was observed that water solubility of curcumin in the nanocomposite has significantly increased (60% release within 2h and 30 min in distilled water at pH 5.4) compared to pure curcumin. The prepared curcumin activated carboxymethylcellulose-montmorillonite nanocomposite is suitable as a curcumin carrier having enhanced release and structural properties. PMID:26428174

  19. The baculovirus uses a captured host phosphatase to induce enhanced locomotory activity in host caterpillars.

    PubMed

    Katsuma, Susumu; Koyano, Yasue; Kang, Wonkyung; Kokusho, Ryuhei; Kamita, Shizuo George; Shimada, Toru

    2012-01-01

    The baculovirus is a classic example of a parasite that alters the behavior or physiology of its host so that progeny transmission is maximized. Baculoviruses do this by inducing enhanced locomotory activity (ELA) that causes the host caterpillars to climb to the upper foliage of plants. We previously reported that this behavior is not induced in silkworms that are infected with a mutant baculovirus lacking its protein tyrosine phosphatase (ptp) gene, a gene likely captured from an ancestral host. Here we show that the product of the ptp gene, PTP, associates with baculovirus ORF1629 as a virion structural protein, but surprisingly phosphatase activity associated with PTP was not required for the induction of ELA. Interestingly, the ptp knockout baculovirus showed significantly reduced infectivity of larval brain tissues. Collectively, we show that the modern baculovirus uses the host-derived phosphatase to establish adequate infection for ELA as a virion-associated structural protein rather than as an enzyme.

  20. Enhancing the stability and antibiofilm activity of DspB by immobilization on carboxymethyl chitosan nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Tan, Yulong; Ma, Su; Liu, Chenguang; Yu, Wengong; Han, Feng

    2015-09-01

    A β-N-acetyl-glucosaminidase (DspB) from Aggregatibacter actinomycetemcomitans CU1000 has been proved to inhibit and detach the biofilms formed by Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus aureus and A. actinomycetemcomitans. However, the application of this enzyme is limited by its poor stability. In the present study, a β-N-acetyl-glucosaminidase encoding gene, dspB, was cloned from A. actinomycetemcomitans HK1651 and expressed in Escherichia coli. The recombinant DspB was loaded on hydrogel nanoparticles, which was prepared by using linoleic acid (LA) modified carboxymethyl chitosan (CMCS) after sonication. The nanoparticles were almost saturated by DspB at 0.3 mg/ml, which gave a loading capacity of 76.7%. The immobilization enhanced thermal stability, storage stability and reusability of DspB significantly. Moreover, it also increased antibiofilm activity due to the dual mechanism, including the improvement of the enzyme stability and the antibiofilm activity of CMCS nanoparticles. PMID:26302845

  1. The Baculovirus Uses a Captured Host Phosphatase to Induce Enhanced Locomotory Activity in Host Caterpillars

    PubMed Central

    Katsuma, Susumu; Koyano, Yasue; Kang, WonKyung; Kokusho, Ryuhei; Kamita, Shizuo George; Shimada, Toru

    2012-01-01

    The baculovirus is a classic example of a parasite that alters the behavior or physiology of its host so that progeny transmission is maximized. Baculoviruses do this by inducing enhanced locomotory activity (ELA) that causes the host caterpillars to climb to the upper foliage of plants. We previously reported that this behavior is not induced in silkworms that are infected with a mutant baculovirus lacking its protein tyrosine phosphatase (ptp) gene, a gene likely captured from an ancestral host. Here we show that the product of the ptp gene, PTP, associates with baculovirus ORF1629 as a virion structural protein, but surprisingly phosphatase activity associated with PTP was not required for the induction of ELA. Interestingly, the ptp knockout baculovirus showed significantly reduced infectivity of larval brain tissues. Collectively, we show that the modern baculovirus uses the host-derived phosphatase to establish adequate infection for ELA as a virion-associated structural protein rather than as an enzyme. PMID:22496662

  2. PKC activators enhance GABAergic neurotransmission and paired-pulse facilitation in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons.

    PubMed

    Xu, C; Liu, Q-Y; Alkon, D L

    2014-05-30

    Bryostatin-1, a potent agonist of protein kinase C (PKC), has recently been found to enhance spatial learning and long-term memory in rats, mice, rabbits and the nudibranch Hermissenda, and to exert profound neuroprotective effects on Alzheimer's disease (AD) in transgenic mice. However, details of the mechanistic effects of bryostatin on learning and memory remain unclear. To address this issue, whole-cell recording, a dual-recording approach and extracellular recording techniques were performed on young (2-4months) Brown-Norway rats. We found that bath-applied bryostatin-1 significantly increased the frequency and amplitude of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSCs). The firing rate of GABAergic interneurons significantly was also increased as recorded with a loosely-attached extracellular recording configuration. Simultaneous recordings from communicating cell pairs of interneuron and pyramidal neuron revealed unique activity-dependent properties of GABAergic synapses. Furthermore, the bryostatin-induced increase of the frequency and amplitude of IPSCs was blocked by methionine enkephalin which selectively suppressed the excitability of interneurons. Pretreatment with RO-32-0432, a relatively specific PKCα antagonist, blocked the effect of bryostatin on sIPSCs. Finally, bryostatin increased paired-pulse ratio of GABAergic synapses that lasted for at least 20min while pretreatment with RO-32-0432 significantly reduced the ratio. In addition, 8-[2-(2-pentyl-cyclopropylmethl)-cyclopropyl]-octanoic acid (DCP-LA), a selective PKCε activator, also increased the frequency and amplitude of sIPSCs. Taken together, these results suggest that bryostatin enhances GABAergic neurotransmission in pyramidal neurons by activating the PKCα & ε-dependent pathway and by a presynaptic mechanism with excitation of GABAergic interneurons. These effects of bryostatin on GABAergic transmissions and modifiability may contribute to the improvement of learning and memory

  3. Influence of skin penetration enhancers on skin barrier function and skin protease activity.

    PubMed

    Mohammed, Diar; Hirata, Kazumasa; Hadgraft, Jonathan; Lane, Majella E

    2014-01-23

    In order to overcome the skin's excellent barrier function formulation scientists often employ skin penetration enhancers (SPEs) in topical and transdermal formulations. The effects of these compounds on skin health is still not well understood at the molecular level. The aim of the present work was to probe the effects of some common SPEs on desquamatory protease activity in healthy skin. The SPEs studied were isopropyl myristate (IPM), propylene glycol, (PG), propylene glycol laurate (PGL) and Transcutol™ (TC). Occluded infinite doses of each SPE were applied to human volunteers for 24 h. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL) measurements were taken before and after application of SPEs. Tape strips were collected from the treated sites to determine protein content and the activity of two desquamatory proteases kallikrein 5 (KLK5) and kallikrein 7 (KLK7). TEWL values were also measured after tape stripping. PG was found to elevate both TEWL values and KLK7 activity to a significant extent (p<0.05). No significant effects were observed for the other SPEs. The ability of PG to alter the skin barrier at the macroscopic level and the influence of the molecule on protease activity reported here may have implications for its use in topical formulations used for the management of impaired skin barrier function such as atopic eczema or psoriasis. PMID:24063883

  4. Influence of skin penetration enhancers on skin barrier function and skin protease activity.

    PubMed

    Mohammed, Diar; Hirata, Kazumasa; Hadgraft, Jonathan; Lane, Majella E

    2014-01-23

    In order to overcome the skin's excellent barrier function formulation scientists often employ skin penetration enhancers (SPEs) in topical and transdermal formulations. The effects of these compounds on skin health is still not well understood at the molecular level. The aim of the present work was to probe the effects of some common SPEs on desquamatory protease activity in healthy skin. The SPEs studied were isopropyl myristate (IPM), propylene glycol, (PG), propylene glycol laurate (PGL) and Transcutol™ (TC). Occluded infinite doses of each SPE were applied to human volunteers for 24 h. Transepidermal water loss (TEWL) measurements were taken before and after application of SPEs. Tape strips were collected from the treated sites to determine protein content and the activity of two desquamatory proteases kallikrein 5 (KLK5) and kallikrein 7 (KLK7). TEWL values were also measured after tape stripping. PG was found to elevate both TEWL values and KLK7 activity to a significant extent (p<0.05). No significant effects were observed for the other SPEs. The ability of PG to alter the skin barrier at the macroscopic level and the influence of the molecule on protease activity reported here may have implications for its use in topical formulations used for the management of impaired skin barrier function such as atopic eczema or psoriasis.

  5. Plant Food Delphinidin-3-Glucoside Significantly Inhibits Platelet Activation and Thrombosis: Novel Protective Roles against Cardiovascular Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Yan; Shi, Zhenyin; Reheman, Adili; Jin, Joseph W.; Li, Conglei; Wang, Yiming; Andrews, Marc C.; Chen, Pingguo; Zhu, Guangheng; Ling, Wenhua; Ni, Heyu

    2012-01-01

    Delphinidin-3-glucoside (Dp-3-g) is one of the predominant bioactive compounds of anthocyanins in many plant foods. Although several anthocyanin compounds have been reported to be protective against cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), the direct effect of anthocyanins on platelets, the key players in atherothrombosis, has not been studied. The roles of Dp-3-g in platelet function are completely unknown. The present study investigated the effects of Dp-3-g on platelet activation and several thrombosis models in vitro and in vivo. We found that Dp-3-g significantly inhibited human and murine platelet aggregation in both platelet-rich plasma and purified platelets. It also markedly reduced thrombus growth in human and murine blood in perfusion chambers at both low and high shear rates. Using intravital microscopy, we observed that Dp-3-g decreased platelet deposition, destabilized thrombi, and prolonged the time required for vessel occlusion. Dp-3-g also significantly inhibited thrombus growth in a carotid artery thrombosis model. To elucidate the mechanisms, we examined platelet activation markers via flow cytometry and found that Dp-3-g significantly inhibited the expression of P-selectin, CD63, CD40L, which reflect platelet α- and δ-granule release, and cytosol protein secretion, respectively. We further demonstrated that Dp-3-g downregulated the expression of active integrin αIIbβ3 on platelets, and attenuated fibrinogen binding to platelets following agonist treatment, without interfering with the direct interaction between fibrinogen and integrin αIIbβ3. We found that Dp-3-g reduced phosphorylation of adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase, which may contribute to the observed inhibitory effects on platelet activation. Thus, Dp-3-g significantly inhibits platelet activation and attenuates thrombus growth at both arterial and venous shear stresses, which likely contributes to its protective roles against thrombosis and CVDs. PMID:22624015

  6. Neuronal activity significantly reduces water displacement: DWI of a vital rat spinal cord with no hemodynamic effect.

    PubMed

    Tirosh, Nitzan; Nevo, Uri

    2013-08-01

    Changes in the diffusion weighted MRI (DWI) signal were observed to be correlated with neuronal activity during chemically induced brain activity, epileptic seizures, or visual stimulation. These changes suggest a possible reduction in water displacement that accompanies neuronal activity, but were possibly affected by other physiological mechanisms such as blood oxygenation level and blood flow. We developed an imaging experiment of an excised and vital newborn rat spinal cord to examine the effect of neuronal function on the displacement of water molecules as measured by DWI signal. This approach provides a DWI experiment of a vital mammalian CNS tissue in the absence of some of the systemic sources of noise. We detected a significant and reproducible drop with an average value of 19.5 ± 1.6% (mean ± SE) upon activation. The drop repeated itself in three orthogonal directions. ADC values corresponded to an oblate anisotropy. This result was validated by high resolution DWI of a fixed tissue, imaged with an ultra-high field MRI. The results support our working hypothesis that water displacement is affected by neuronal activation. These results further imply that water displacement might serve as a potential marker for brain function, and that, although commonly viewed as wholly electrochemical, neuronal activity includes a significant mechanical dimension that affects water displacement.

  7. Enhanced Locomotor Activity Is Required to Exert Dietary Restriction-Dependent Increase of Stress Resistance in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Ghimire, Saurav; Kim, Man Su

    2015-01-01

    Dietary restriction (DR) is known to be one of the most effective interventions to increase stress resistance, yet the mechanisms remain elusive. One of the most obvious DR-induced changes in phenotype is an increase in locomotor activity. Although it is conceptually perceivable that nutritional scarcity should prompt enhanced foraging behavior to garner additional dietary resources, the significance of enhanced movement activity has not been associated with the DR-dependent increase of stress resistance. In this study, we confirmed that flies raised on DR exhibited enhanced locomotive activity and increased stress resistance. Excision of fly wings minimized the DR-induced increase in locomotive activity, which resulted in attenuation of the DR-dependent increase of stress resistance. The possibility that wing clipping counteracts the DR by coercing flies to have more intake was ruled out since it did not induce any weight gain. Rather it was found that elimination of reactive oxygen species (ROS) that is enhanced by DR-induced upregulation of expression of antioxidant genes was significantly reduced by wing clipping. Collectively, our data suggests that DR increased stress resistance by increasing the locomotor activity, which upregulated expression of protective genes including, but not limited to, ROS scavenger system.

  8. Activation of Rho-kinase in the brainstem enhances sympathetic drive in mice with heart failure.

    PubMed

    Ito, Koji; Kimura, Yoshikuni; Hirooka, Yoshitaka; Sagara, Yoji; Sunagawa, Kenji

    2008-11-01

    Rho-kinase is involved in the pathogenesis of hypertension and left ventricular remodelling after myocardial infarction (MI). In an earlier study, we had demonstrated that Rho-kinase in the brainstem contributes to hypertensive mechanisms via the sympathetic nervous system; however, it is not known whether Rho-kinase in the brainstem also contributes to sympathetic nerve activation after MI. Male Institute of Cancer Research mice (8-10 weeks old) were used for the study. Two days before coronary artery occlusion (MI group), the left ventricular function was estimated by echocardiography. Following this, Y-27632 (0.5 mM, 0.25 microL/h), a specific Rho-kinase inhibitor, or a vehicle was intracisternally infused in the mice using an osmotic mini-pump. Nine days after coronary artery occlusion, we evaluated the 24-hour urinary norepinephrine excretion (U-NE) as a marker of sympathetic nerve activity. Ten days after coronary artery occlusion, we measured organ weight and evaluated Rho-kinase activity in the brainstem by measuring the amount of phosphorylated ezrin/radixin/moesin proteins, one of the substrates of Rho-kinase. The control group underwent a sham operation. Rho-kinase activity, U-NE, and lungs and liver weight were significantly greater in the MI group compared with the control group. Left ventricular size increased and percent fractional shortening decreased in the MI group compared with the control group. Y-27632 significantly decreased Rho-kinase activity and attenuated the increase in U-NE after MI. These results demonstrate that Rho-kinase is activated in the brainstem after MI and that the activation of this pathway is involved in the resulting enhanced sympathetic drive. PMID:18762460

  9. Assay of insulator enhancer-blocking activity with the use of transient transfection.

    PubMed

    Smirnov, N A; Didych, D A; Akopov, S B; Nikolaev, L G; Sverdlov, E D

    2013-08-01

    We used a transient transfection of cultured cells with linearized plasmids to analyze the enhancer-blocking activity of potential insulators including the standard cHS4 chicken beta-globin insulator and several DNA fragments selected from the human genome sequence. About 60-80% of the potential insulators do reveal the enhancer-blocking activity when probed by the transient transfection assay. The activity of different sequences is characterized by certain tissue specificity and by dependence on the orientation of the fragments relative to the promoter. Thus, the transfection model may be used for quantitative analysis of the enhancer-blocking activity of the potential insulators. PMID:24228877

  10. The dependence of force enhancement on activation in human adductor pollicis.

    PubMed

    Oskouei, Ali E; Herzog, Walter

    2006-09-01

    It has been well recognized that the steady-state isometric force after active muscle/fiber stretch is greater than the corresponding isometric force for electrically stimulated muscles and maximal voluntary contractions (MVC). However, recent evidence obtained for sub-MVC suggests that force enhancement properties are different from those observed for electrically induced and MVC. Specifically, it appears that force enhancement is activation-dependent and that there is a subject-specific threshold for force enhancement in sub-MVC. To address these suggestions, the relationship between force enhancement and voluntary activation during stretch was investigated in 11 healthy subjects. Human adductor pollicis muscles were studied and force enhancement was measured while muscle activation during the steady-state isometric phase was controlled at a level of 30% of MVC. In order to study the effects of activation on force enhancement, subjects performed stretch contractions at 0, 10, 30, 60, and 100% of maximal voluntary effort while the steady-state isometric force after stretch, obtained at 30% of activation in all cases, was compared to the corresponding values measured in the isometric reference contractions. There was no force enhancement if muscle stretching occurred passively but all subjects showed force enhancement when muscle stretching occurred at maximal voluntary effort. When increasing the level of activation during the stretch phase, force enhancement increased, and the number of subjects who showed force enhancement increased as well. We conclude from these results that force enhancement during voluntary contractions is activation-dependent with a threshold that is subject-specific.

  11. NEU3 activity enhances EGFR activation without affecting EGFR expression and acts on its sialylation levels.

    PubMed

    Mozzi, Alessandra; Forcella, Matilde; Riva, Alice; Difrancesco, Carlotta; Molinari, Francesca; Martin, Vittoria; Papini, Nadia; Bernasconi, Barbara; Nonnis, Simona; Tedeschi, Gabriella; Mazzucchelli, Luca; Monti, Eugenio; Fusi, Paola; Frattini, Milo

    2015-08-01

    Several studies performed over the last decade have focused on the role of sialylation in the progression of cancer and, in particular, on the association between deregulation of sialidases and tumorigenic transformation. The plasma membrane-associated sialidase NEU3 is often deregulated in colorectal cancer (CRC), and it was shown that this enzyme co-immunoprecipitates in HeLa cells with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), the molecular target of most recent monoclonal antibody-based therapies against CRC. To investigate the role of NEU3 sialidase on EGFR deregulation in CRC, we first collected data on NEU3 gene expression levels from a library of commercial colon cell lines, demonstrating that NEU3 transcription is upregulated in these cell lines. We also found EGFR to be hyperphosphorylated in all cell lines, with the exception of SW620 cells and the CCD841 normal intestinal cell line. By comparing the effects induced by overexpression of either the wild-type or the inactive mutant form of NEU3 on EGFR, we demonstrated that the active form of NEU3 enhanced receptor activation without affecting EGFR mRNA or protein expression. Moreover, through western blots and mass spectrometry analysis, we found that EGFR immunoprecipitated from cells overexpressing active NEU3, unlike the receptor from mock cells and cells overexpressing inactive NEU3, is desialylated. On the whole, our data demonstrate that, besides the already reported indirect EGFR activation through GM3, sialidase NEU3 could also play a role on EGFR activation through its desialylation. PMID:25922362

  12. Gastrointestinal tract radionuclide activity on In-111 labeled leukocyte imaging: clinical significance in patients with fever of unknown origin

    SciTech Connect

    Datz, F.L.; Thorne, D.A.

    1986-09-01

    To determine the frequency and clinical significance of indium-111 labeled leukocyte activity in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract of patients with fever of unknown origin, we reviewed 312 leukocyte studies involving 271 patients. Radionuclide activity was noted in the bowel in 59 cases. Of these, only 27 were due to the infection or inflammatory disease that caused the patient's fever. The 32 false-positive results were due primarily to swallowed leukocytes or bleeding. In two cases, no explanation was found for the activity in the GI tract. We conclude that bowel activity on In-111 labeled leukocyte scans in patients with fever of unknown origin often does not correlate with the true cause of the patient's fever.

  13. Behavioral activation: a strategy to enhance treatment response.

    PubMed

    Sudak, Donna M; Majeed, Muhammad H; Youngman, Branden

    2014-07-01

    Behavioral activation is an empirically validated treatment for depression pioneered in 1973 by Ferster, based on B.F. Skinner's behavioral principles. After publication of Beck's work on cognitive therapy, the boundaries of behavioral and cognitive therapies were blurred and the two now overlap substantially. Behavioral activation is also used as a stand-alone treatment and can also be effective in conjunction with antidepressant medication. Case conceptualization in behavioral activation entails an assessment of the behaviors that the patient has stopped that produce pleasure or are of importance, as well as behaviors essential to self-care. Activity monitoring, which provides treatment targets and leads to the case conceptualization in behavioral activation, consists of using charts, forms, or other prompts to track the relationship between activities and other variables (e.g., mood, enjoyment). That technique is also used to target rumination, procrastination, and avoidance and may also be helpful for patients with psychosis. PMID:25036582

  14. Femtoliter silver cups as surface enhanced Raman scattering active containers.

    PubMed

    Bhuvana, T; Kulkarni, G U

    2009-01-28

    Femtoliter capacity Ag cups formed by the pulsed laser ablation of an Ag foil have been tried out as substrates for surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) measurements. The cups are formed as the impinging droplets from the laser plume undergo a flow pattern before freezing into cup-like structures, resulting in a surface roughness (approximately 35 nm) that makes them ideal for SERS studies. The internal volume of the cups is in the femtoliter (10(-15) l) range, well suited for small-scale reactions, particularly in biological studies. The cups exhibit enhancement factors of the order of 10(6) with the analyte molecule thiophenol. Individual cups have been dosed attoliter quantities (10(-18) l) of the analyte and detected. PMID:19417320

  15. Facile synthesis of Ag–Cu{sub 2}O composites with enhanced photocatalytic activity

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Jianbo; Li, Zhen; Zhao, Caixin; Wang, Yang; Liu, Xueqin

    2014-12-15

    Highlights: • Ag–Cu{sub 2}O nanocomposites were synthesized via awet-chemical precipitation route. • The growth temperature does not exceed 50 °C in any step of the synthesis. • Enhanced photocurrent of Ag–Cu{sub 2}O composites, compared to pure Cu{sub 2}O particles. • The photocatalytic property was studied upon simulated sunlight. • Enhanced photocatalytic property of Ag–Cu{sub 2}O composites, compared to pure Cu{sub 2}O particles. - Abstract: Silver–cuprous oxide (Ag–Cu{sub 2}O) microcomposites are successfully prepared by a facile low-cost solution method. The obtained materials were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD), energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), ultraviolet–visible (UV–vis) spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). Experiments demonstrated that the formation of Ag–Cu{sub 2}O microcomposites was significantly influenced by the concentration of AgNO{sub 3}, and with increasing the concentration of AgNO{sub 3}, the optical absorption of the composites becomes strong. The photocatalytic activity of the prepared Ag–Cu{sub 2}O composites was determined by measuring the degradation of methyl orange solution under visible light, to find out its potential application in waste water treatment. The results reveal that the photocurrent of the composite is about 4 times higher than that of pure Cu{sub 2}O and the visible light photocatalytic activity of the composite is enhanced greatly on degradation of methyl orange. The reason for improvement in photocatalytic activity of the Ag–Cu{sub 2}O composites was also discussed.

  16. Significance of the C-terminal domain of Erwinia uredovora ice nucleation-active protein (Ina U).

    PubMed

    Michigami, Y; Abe, K; Obata, H; Arai, S

    1995-12-01

    Ice nucleation-active (Ina) proteins of bacterial origin comprise three distinct domains, i.e., N-terminal (N-), central repeat (R-), and C-terminal (C-) domains, among which the R-domain is essential, and its length may be correlated with the ice nucleation activity. In addition, the short C-terminal domain of about 50 amino acid residues is indispensable for the activity. Using the Ina U protein of Erwinia uredovora, we carried out precise mutational analyses of its C-terminus. The ice nucleation activity (T50) assay showed that the C-terminal 12 amino acids were not necessary, and a deletion mutant (delta C29) with a new C-terminal, Met29 (numbered from the first amino acid residue of the C-domain and corresponding to Met1022), exhibited almost the same activity as the wild-type Ina U protein did. However, deletion of the C-terminal 13 residues including Met29 resulted in almost complete loss of the activity. In the deletion mutant (delta C29), amino acid replacement of the C-terminus, Met29, showed that the activity was retained when Met29 was replaced with a neutral, aromatic, or basic amino acid (Gly, Phe, or Lys), but was lost on the replacement with an acidic amino acid (Asp or Glu). In addition, two other residues in the C-terminal region commonly present in all Ina proteins were examined as to their importance, and it was shown that one of these residues, Tyr27, is important for the activity, although it is not exclusively required; the activity was lost to a great extent when this residue was replaced with Gly or Ala, but to a lesser extent when it was replaced with Leu. These results suggest that significance of the secondary and/or tertiary structure of the C-terminal region of the Ina U protein for the ice nucleation activity. PMID:8720147

  17. Synergistic Enhancement of Cellobiohydrolase Performance on Pretreated Corn Stover by Addition of Xylanase and Esterase Activities

    SciTech Connect

    Selig, M. J.; Knoshaug E. P.; Adney, W. S.; Himmel, M. E.; Decker, S. R.

    2007-11-01

    Significant increases in the depolymerization of corn stover cellulose by cellobiohydrolase I (Cel7A) from Trichoderma reesei were observed using small quantities of non-cellulolytic cell wall-degrading enzymes. Purified endoxylanase (XynA), ferulic acid esterase (FaeA), and acetyl xylan esterase (Axe1) all enhanced Cel7A performance on corn stover subjected to hot water pretreatment. In all cases, the addition of these activities improved the effectiveness of the enzymatic hydrolysis in terms of the quantity of cellulose converted per milligram of total protein. Improvement in cellobiose release by the addition of the non-cellulolytic enzymes ranged from a 13-84% increase over Cel7A alone. The most effective combinations included the addition of both XynA and Axe1, which synergistically enhance xylan conversions resulting in additional synergistic improvements in glucan conversion. Additionally, we note a direct relationship between enzymatic xylan removal in the presence of XynA and the enhancement of cellulose hydrolysis by Cel7A.

  18. Checkpoint Kinase 1 Activation Enhances Intestinal Epithelial Barrier Function via Regulation of Claudin-5 Expression

    PubMed Central

    Watari, Akihiro; Hasegawa, Maki; Yagi, Kiyohito; Kondoh, Masuo

    2016-01-01

    Several stressors are known to influence epithelial tight junction (TJ) integrity, but the association between DNA damage and TJ integrity remains unclear. Here we examined the effects of daunorubicin and rebeccamycin, two anti-tumor chemicals that induce DNA damage, on TJ integrity in human intestinal epithelial cells. Daunorubicin and rebeccamycin dose-dependently enhanced transepithelial electrical resistance (TER) and decreased flux of the 4 kDa FITC-dextran in Caco-2 cell monolayer. Daunorubicin- or rebeccamycin-induced enhancement of the TJ barrier function partly rescued attenuation of the barrier function by the inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IFN-γ. Daunorubicin and rebeccamycin increased claudin-5 expression and the product was distributed in the actin cytoskeleton fraction, which was enriched with TJ proteins. Caffeine, which is an inhibitor of ataxia telangiectasia mutated protein (ATM) and ataxia telangiectasia mutated and Rad3-related protein (ATR), and the Chk1 inhibitor inhibited the TER increases induced by daunorubicin and rebeccamycin, whereas a Chk2 inhibitor did not. Treatment with Chk1 siRNA also significantly inhibited the TER increases. Induction of claudin-5 expression was inhibited by Chk1 inhibitor and by siRNA treatment. Our results suggest that Chk1 activation by daunorubicin and rebeccamycin induced claudin-5 expression and enhanced TJ barrier function in Caco-2 cell monolayer, which suggests a link between DNA damage and TJ integrity in the human intestine. PMID:26727128

  19. Novel oxidatively activated agents modify DNA and are enhanced by ercc1 silencing.

    PubMed

    Jones, Amy R; Bell-Horwath, Tiffany R; Li, Guorui; Rollmann, Stephanie M; Merino, Edward J

    2012-11-19

    chlorambucil, showed statistically significant enhanced toxicity in Drosophila with silenced Ercc1. In addition, 5-fluorouracil, which does not produce bulky lesions, showed no selective toxicity. An-Hq and An-Hq(2) showed statistically significant toxicity in Drosophila with silenced Ercc1. Examination of cytotoxicity shows renal carcinoma cell lines as a target of these agents with a median IC(50) of 1.8 μM. Taken together, these data show that the designed oxidatively activated agents form distinct, bulky DNA modifications that prove difficult for cancer cells possessing an elevated reactive oxygen species phenotype to overcome. The modification produced is relatively unique among anticancer agents. PMID:23051149

  20. Urease immobilized polymer hydrogel: Long-term stability and enhancement of enzymatic activity.

    PubMed

    Kutcherlapati, S N Raju; Yeole, Niranjan; Jana, Tushar

    2016-02-01

    A method has been developed in which an enzyme namely urease was immobilized inside hydrogel matrix to study the stability and enzymatic activity in room temperature (∼27-30°C). This urease coupled hydrogel (UCG) was obtained by amine-acid coupling reaction and this procedure is such that it ensured the wider opening of mobile flap of enzyme active site. A systematic comparison of urea-urease assay and the detailed kinetic data clearly revealed that the urease shows activity for more than a month when stored at ∼27-30°C in case of UCG whereas it becomes inactive in case of free urease (enzyme in buffer solution). The aqueous microenvironment inside the hydrogel, unusual morphological features and thermal behaviour were believed to be the reasons for unexpected behaviour. UCG displayed enzyme activity at basic pH and up to 60°C. UCG showed significant enhancement in activity against thermal degradation compared to free urease. In summary, this method is a suitable process to stabilize the biomacromolecules in standard room temperature for many practical uses.

  1. Urease immobilized polymer hydrogel: Long-term stability and enhancement of enzymatic activity.

    PubMed

    Kutcherlapati, S N Raju; Yeole, Niranjan; Jana, Tushar

    2016-02-01

    A method has been developed in which an enzyme namely urease was immobilized inside hydrogel matrix to study the stability and enzymatic activity in room temperature (∼27-30°C). This urease coupled hydrogel (UCG) was obtained by amine-acid coupling reaction and this procedure is such that it ensured the wider opening of mobile flap of enzyme active site. A systematic comparison of urea-urease assay and the detailed kinetic data clearly revealed that the urease shows activity for more than a month when stored at ∼27-30°C in case of UCG whereas it becomes inactive in case of free urease (enzyme in buffer solution). The aqueous microenvironment inside the hydrogel, unusual morphological features and thermal behaviour were believed to be the reasons for unexpected behaviour. UCG displayed enzyme activity at basic pH and up to 60°C. UCG showed significant enhancement in activity against thermal degradation compared to free urease. In summary, this method is a suitable process to stabilize the biomacromolecules in standard room temperature for many practical uses. PMID:26520823

  2. Enhancing Learning Outcomes through Application Driven Activities in Marketing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stegemann, Nicole; Sutton-Brady, Catherine

    2013-01-01

    This paper introduces an activity used in class to allow students to apply previously acquired information to a hands-on task. As the authors have previously shown active learning is a way to effectively facilitate and improve students' learning outcomes. As a result to improve learning outcomes we have overtime developed a series of learning…

  3. The Learning Activities Questionnaire: A Tool to Enhance Teaching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ager, Richard

    2012-01-01

    This article describes the Learning Activities Questionnaire (LAQ) and how it can be employed to evaluate learning tasks not typically examined in course evaluation instruments such as readings and assignments. Drawing from behavioral theory in its focus on specific activities, this instrument is simple to interpret and provides clear direction…

  4. Surfactant-activated lipase hybrid nanoflowers with enhanced enzymatic performance

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Jiandong; Zhao, Yamin; Liu, Ronglin; Zhong, Cheng; Jia, Shiru

    2016-01-01

    Increasing numbers of materials have been extensively used as platforms for enzyme immobilization to improve catalytic performance. However, activity of the most of the enzymes was declined after immobilization. Here, we develop a surfactant-activated lipase-inorganic flowerlike hybrid nanomaterials with rational design based on interfacial activation and self-assembly. The resulting surfactant-activated lipase-inorganic hybird nanoflower (activated hNF-lipase) exhibited 460% and 200% higher activity than native lipase and conventional lipase-inorganic hybird nanoflower (hNF-lipase). Furthermore, the activated hNF-lipase displayed good reusability due to its monodispersity and mechanical properties, and had excellent long-time stability. The superior catalytic performances were attributed to both the conformational modulation of surfactants and hierarchical structure of nanoflowers, which not only anchored lipases in an active form, but also decreased the enzyme-support negative interaction and mass-transfer limitations. This new biocatalytic system is promising to find widespread use in applications related to biomedicine, biosensor, and biodiesel. PMID:27297609

  5. The design of propolis flavone microemulsion and its effect on enhancing the immunity and antioxidant activity in mice.

    PubMed

    Fan, Yunpeng; Ma, Lin; Zhang, Weimin; Wang, Junmin; Chen, Ying; Gao, Yuanyuan; Feng, Wei; Zhong, Liuqing; Song, Xiaoping

    2014-04-01

    The objective of the present study was to formulate a microemulsion system for improving the activity of propolis flavone (PF). Pseudo-ternary phase diagrams were constructed to evaluate the existence area of PF microemulsion (PFM). The formulation was characterized by particle size, zeta potential, morphology and stability. The results showed that the optimal PFM formulation consists of 5.3% ethyl acetate, 14% RH-40, 7% ethanol and 73.7% water (w/w), with a solubility of PF up to 3.0 mg mL(-1). The immune-enhancing and antioxidant activity of PFM in vitro and in vivo were performed. The results showed that PFM could significantly promote the splenocyte proliferation and the secretion of IL-2 and IFN-γ in vitro. In vivo, PFM at high and medium doses was able to significantly increase the thymus and spleen indices, enhance splenocyte activity and improve the contents of IgG and IgM in serum, it could also improve the antioxidant activity, significantly increase the levels of superoxidase dismutase and glutathione peroxidase, and decrease the malondialdehyde levels compared with PF. These results indicated that microemulsion could be used as an effective formulation for enhancing the activity of PF. Therefore, microemulsion would be expected to exploit into a new-type preparation of PF.

  6. The significant drop in physical activity among children on holidays in a small town in the Tohoku district.

    PubMed

    Mitsui, Takahiro; Barajima, Tomoko; Kanachi, Michihiko; Shimaoka, Kiyoshi

    2010-01-01

    In Japan, there is a higher incidence of childhood obesity in the Tohoku district than in other areas. It is known that reduced physical activity is associated with increased body weight, but little is known about the physical activity patterns of children in this area. Accordingly, this study was designed to measure the physical activity of 145 children (73 boys and 72 girls) in Hashikami Town, Aomori Prefecture. Physical activity was assessed through a questionnaire as well as through two weeks of pedometer use. Boys spent more time engaging in physical activity than girls did, reporting 9.5 (0.6-22.0) versus 7.0 (1.2-21.5) hours per week [median (range)] (p=0.002). On school days, boys took an average of 13,586+/-4,386 (mean+/-SD) steps per day, while girls took 12,248+/-4,112; on holidays, boys took 9,531+/-4,557, while girls took 9,419+/-4,524. There was no significant sex-based difference in the number of steps per day (F=1.197, p=0.276), but both boys and girls significantly reduced the number of steps they took on holidays (F=116.537, p<0.001). In addition, 36 (24.8%) children reduced the number of steps they took by more than 50% on holidays compared to school days. In general, the participants engaged in the internationally recommended amounts of physical activity. Yet their reduced level of physical activity on holidays seems to be a matter for concern, as it is a possible cause of the higher incidence of childhood obesity in this area.

  7. Interfacial activity in alkaline flooding enhanced oil recovery

    SciTech Connect

    Chan, M.K.

    1981-01-01

    The ionization of long-chained organic acids in the crude oil to form soaps was shown to be primarily responsible for the lowering of oil-water interfacial tension at alkaline pH. These active acids can be concentrated by silica gel chromatography into a minor polar fraction. An equilibrium chemical model was proposed based on 2 competing reactions: the ionization of acids to form active anions, and the formation of undissociated soap between acid anions and sodium ions. It correlates the interfacial activity with the interfacial concentration of active acid anions which is expressed in terms of the concentrations of the chemical species in the system. The model successfully predicts the observed oil-alkaline solution interfacial phenomenon, including its dependence on pH, alkali and salt concentrations, type of acid present and type of soap formed. Flooding at different alkali concentrations to activate different acid species present in the crude was shown to give better recovery than flooding at a single high alkali concentration. Treating the crude oil with a dilute solution of mineral acids liberates additional free active acids and yields better interfacial activity during subsequent alkali contact.

  8. Fibroblast Growth Factor-9 Activates c-Kit Progenitor Cells and Enhances Angiogenesis in the Infarcted Diabetic Heart

    PubMed Central

    Singla, Dinender; Wang, Jing

    2016-01-01

    We hypothesized that fibroblast growth factor-9 (FGF-9) would enhance angiogenesis via activating c-kit positive stem cells in the infarcted nondiabetic and diabetic heart. In brief, animals were divided into three groups: Sham, MI, and MI+FGF-9. Two weeks following MI or sham surgery, our data suggest that treatment with FGF-9 significantly diminished vascular apoptosis compared to the MI group in both C57BL/6 and db/db mice (p < 0.05). Additionally, the number of c-kit+ve/SM α-actin+ve cells and c-kit+ve/CD31+ve cells were greatly enhanced in the MI+FGF-9 groups relative to the MI suggesting FGF-9 enhances c-Kit cell activation and their differentiation into vascular smooth muscle cells and endothelial cells, respectively (p < 0.05). Histology shows that the total number of vessels were quantified for all groups and our data suggest that the FGF-9 treated groups had significantly more vessels than their MI counterparts (p < 0.05). Finally, echocardiographic data suggests a significant improvement in left ventricular output, as indicated by fractional shortening and ejection fraction in both nondiabetic and diabetic animals treated with FGF-9 (p < 0.05). Overall, our data suggests FGF-9 has the potential to attenuate vascular cell apoptosis, activate c-Kit progenitor cells, and enhance angiogenesis and neovascularization in C57BL/6 and db/db mice leading to improved cardiac function. PMID:26682010

  9. Not all instability training devices enhance muscle activation in highly resistance-trained individuals.

    PubMed

    Wahl, Michael J; Behm, David G

    2008-07-01

    The objective of this study was to measure the electromyographic (EMG) activity of the soleus, bicep femoris, rectus femoris, lower abdominal, and lumbosacral erector spinae (LSES) muscles with a variety of (a) instability devices, (b) stable and unstable (Dyna Disc) exercises, and (c) a fatiguing exercise in 16 highly conditioned individuals. The device protocol had participants assume standing and squatting postures while balancing on a variety of unstable platforms (Dyna Disc, BOSU ball, wobble board, and a Swiss ball) and a stable floor. The exercise protocol had subjects performing, static front lunges, static side lunges, 1-leg hip extensions, 1-leg reaches, and calf raises on a floor or an unstable Dyna Disc. For the fatigue experiment, a wall sit position was undertaken under stable and unstable (BOSU ball) conditions. Results for the device experiment demonstrated increased activity for all muscles when standing on a Swiss ball and all muscles other than the rectus femoris when standing on a wobble board. Only lower abdominals and soleus EMG activity increased while squatting on a Swiss ball and wobble board. Devices such as the Dyna Disc and BOSU ball did not exhibit significant differences in muscle activation under any conditions, except the LSES in the standing Dyna Disc conditions. During the exercise protocol, there were no significant changes in muscle activity between stable and unstable (Dyna Disc) conditions. With the fatigue protocol, soleus EMG activity was 51% greater with a stable base. These results indicate that the use of moderately unstable training devices (i.e., Dyna Disc, BOSU ball) did not provide sufficient challenges to the neuromuscular system in highly resistance-trained individuals. Since highly trained individuals may already possess enhanced stability from the use of dynamic free weights, a greater degree of instability may be necessary.

  10. Blood pressure lowering, fibrinolysis enhancing and antioxidant activities of cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum).

    PubMed

    Verma, S K; Jain, Vartika; Katewa, S S

    2009-12-01

    Elettaria cardamomum (L.) Maton. (Small cardamom) fruit powder was evaluated for its antihypertensive potential and its effect on some of the cardiovascular risk factors in individuals with stage 1 hypertension. Twenty, newly diagnosed individuals with primary hypertension of stage 1 were administered 3 g of cardamom powder in two divided doses for 12 weeks. Blood pressure was recorded initially and at 4 weeks interval for 3 months. Blood samples were also collected initially and at 4 weeks interval for estimation of lipid profile, fibrinogen and fibrinolysis. Total antioxidant status, however, was assessed initially and at the end of the study. Administration of 3 g cardamom powder significantly (p<0.001) decreased systolic, diastolic and mean blood pressure and significantly (p<0.05) increased fibrinolytic activity at the end of 12th week. Total antioxidant status was also significantly (p<0.05) increased by 90% at the end of 3 months. However, fibrinogen and lipid levels were not significantly altered. All study subjects experienced a feeling of well being without any side-effects. Thus, the present study demonstrates that small cardamom effectively reduces blood pressure, enhances fibrinolysis and improves antioxidant status, without significantly altering blood lipids and fibrinogen levels in stage 1 hypertensive individuals.

  11. Nifedipine Treatment for Hypertension is Associated with Enhanced Lipolytic Activity and Accelerated Clearance of Postprandial Lipemia.

    PubMed

    Grosskopf, I; Shaish, A; Charach, G; Harats, D; Kamari, Y

    2016-04-01

    Hypertension, advanced age, postprandial hyperlipidemia, and insulin resistance are major risk factors for atherosclerosis. The calcium channel blocker nifedipine is reported to ameliorate insulin resistance possibly by activating PPARγ. This is expected to become accentuated in elderly individuals due to age-related insulin resistance. Insulin resistance modulates lipoprotein metabolism. Therefore, we reasoned that nifedipne offers the potential for improving postprandial lipemia in association with increasing age. We studied the effect of nifedipine on fasting lipids, postprandial lipemia, insulin sensitivity, and plasma lipolytic activity in 24 and 15 hypertensive subjects aged 70-75 years and 40-45 years, respectively. As expected, nifedipine significantly lowered systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Nifedipine decreased fasting triglyceride level (23%) and increased HDL-C (15%) in the elderly group. At baseline, postprandial triglyceride levels were remarkably elevated in elderly compared to younger patients (1 288±798 vs. 501±260 mg·dl(-1)·h, p<0.05), as was retinyl palmitate (surrogate marker for intestinally-derived cholesterol) in the chylomicrons (45.0±26.5 vs. 23.4±10.6 mg·l(-1)·h, p<0.05) and chylomicron remnant (15.2±5.4 vs. 11.7±4.7 mg·l(-1)·h, p<0.05) fractions. Importantly, while the level of chylomicron remnants in the group of younger subjects remained unchanged after treatment, nifedipine was associated with a significantly decreased chylomicron remnants retinyl palmitate in the elderly group, which dropped to levels, observed in younger subjects. This was accompanied by enhanced insulin sensitivity and augmented plasma lipolytic activity. The present work suggests that nifedipine has favorable metabolic effects that are beyond the known enhancement of insulin sensitivity. The improvement in postprandial lipidemia by nifedipine may add to its anti-atherogenic effects in hypertensive patients. PMID:26849821

  12. Macrophage Bactericidal Activities against Staphylococcus aureus Are Enhanced In Vivo by Selenium Supplementation in a Dose-Dependent Manner

    PubMed Central

    Aribi, Mourad; Meziane, Warda; Habi, Salim; Boulatika, Yasser

    2015-01-01

    Background Dietary selenium is of fundamental importance to maintain optimal immune function and enhance immunity during infection. To this end, we examined the effect of selenium on macrophage bactericidal activities against Staphylococcus aureus. Methods Assays were performed in golden Syrian hamsters and peritoneal macrophages cultured with S. aureus and different concentrations of selenium. Results Infected and selenium-supplemented animals have significantly decreased levels of serum nitric oxide (NO) production when compared with infected but non-selenium-supplemented animals at day 7 post-infection (p < 0.05). A low dose of 5 ng/mL selenium induced a significant decrease in macrophage NO production, but significant increase in hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) levels (respectively, p = 0.009, p < 0.001). The NO production and H2O2 levels were significantly increased with increasing concentrations of selenium; the optimal macrophage activity levels were reached at 20 ng/mL. The concentration of 5 ng/mL of selenium induced a significant decrease in the bacterial arginase activity but a significant increase in the macrophage arginase activity. The dose of 20 ng/mL selenium induced a significant decrease of bacterial growth (p < 0.0001) and a significant increase in macrophage phagocytic activity, NO production/arginase balance and S. aureus killing (for all comparisons, p < 0.001). Conclusions Selenium acts in a dose-dependent manner on macrophage activation, phagocytosis and bacterial killing suggesting that inadequate doses may cause a loss of macrophage bactericidal activities and that selenium supplementation could enhance the in vivo control of immune response to S. aureus. PMID:26340099

  13. Enhanced AMPA receptor activity increases operant alcohol self-administration and cue-induced reinstatement.

    PubMed

    Cannady, Reginald; Fisher, Kristen R; Durant, Brandon; Besheer, Joyce; Hodge, Clyde W

    2013-01-01

    Long-term alcohol exposure produces neuroadaptations that contribute to the progression of alcohol abuse disorders. Chronic alcohol consumption results in strengthened excitatory neurotransmission and increased α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptors (AMPA) receptor signaling in animal models. However, the mechanistic role of enhanced AMPA receptor activity in alcohol-reinforcement and alcohol-seeking behavior remains unclear. This study examined the role of enhanced AMPA receptor function using the selective positive allosteric modulator, aniracetam, in modulating operant alcohol self-administration and cue-induced reinstatement. Male alcohol-preferring (P-) rats, trained to self-administer alcohol (15%, v/v) versus water were pre-treated with aniracetam to assess effects on maintenance of alcohol self-administration. To determine reinforcer specificity, P-rats were trained to self-administer sucrose (0.8%, w/v) versus water, and effects of aniracetam were tested. The role of aniracetam in modulating relapse of alcohol-seeking was assessed using a response contingent cue-induced reinstatement procedure in P-rats trained to self-administer 15% alcohol. Aniracetam pre-treatment significantly increased alcohol-reinforced responses relative to vehicle treatment. This increase was not attributed to aniracetam-induced hyperactivity as aniracetam pre-treatment did not alter locomotor activity. AMPA receptor involvement was confirmed because 6,7-dinitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (AMPA receptor antagonist) blocked the aniracetam-induced increase in alcohol self-administration. Aniracetam did not alter sucrose-reinforced responses in sucrose-trained P-rats, suggesting that enhanced AMPA receptor activity is selective in modulating the reinforcing function of alcohol. Finally, aniracetam pre-treatment potentiated cue-induced reinstatement of alcohol-seeking behavior versus vehicle-treated P-rats. These data suggest that enhanced glutamate activity at AMPA

  14. Development and evaluation of PEGylated Enoxaparin: a novel approach for enhanced anti-Xa activity.

    PubMed

    Choubey, Anupam Kumar; Dora, Chander Parkash; Bhatt, Tara Dutt; Gill, Manjinder Singh; Suresh, Sarasija

    2014-06-01

    Enoxaparin (ENX) is one of the most widely prescribed low molecular weight heparin inprophylaxis and treatment of venous thromboembolism. In this study, Enoxaparin-PEG conjugate (P-ENX) was synthesized from Enoxaparin and polyethylene glycol (PEG) and evaluated for its potential for extended duration of action. The esterification of the carboxyl groups of the drug moiety with the hydroxyl groups of mPEG-2000 was done by employing carbodiimide coupling chemistry. P-ENX conjugate was purified by dialysis and characterized by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), Proton-Nuclear magnetic resonance ((1)H NMR) and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) mass analysis techniques. FTIR analysis revealed frequency of the carbonyl group in accord with ester linkage formation between the drug and the PEG moiety. (1)H NMR of the conjugate showed significant change in the chemical shift further indicative of ENX and PEG chemical interaction. In MALDI spectra, small peaks at 12,907 and 16,137 m/z confirmed the probability of conjugation of ENX and PEG. P-ENX exhibited considerable enhancement in anti-Xa activity (by three-folds) in comparison to free ENX. Further, an increase in AUC (over four-folds) was observed in P-ENX. Thus, PEGylation of ENX is a novel approach for extended and enhanced activity of ENX with a potential for decreased dosing frequency. PMID:24681308

  15. Tim-3 enhances FcεRI-proximal signaling to modulate mast cell activation.

    PubMed

    Phong, Binh L; Avery, Lyndsay; Sumpter, Tina L; Gorman, Jacob V; Watkins, Simon C; Colgan, John D; Kane, Lawrence P

    2015-12-14

    T cell (or transmembrane) immunoglobulin and mucin domain protein 3 (Tim-3) has attracted significant attention as a novel immune checkpoint receptor (ICR) on chronically stimulated, often dysfunctional, T cells. Antibodies to Tim-3 can enhance antiviral and antitumor immune responses. Tim-3 is also constitutively expressed by mast cells, NK cells and specific subsets of macrophages and dendritic cells. There is ample evidence for a positive role for Tim-3 in these latter cell types, which is at odds with the model of Tim-3 as an inhibitory molecule on T cells. At this point, little is known about the molecular mechanisms by which Tim-3 regulates the function of T cells or other cell types. We have focused on defining the effects of Tim-3 ligation on mast cell activation, as these cells constitutively express Tim-3 and are activated through an ITAM-containing receptor for IgE (FcεRI), using signaling pathways analogous to those in T cells. Using a variety of gain- and loss-of-function approaches, we find that Tim-3 acts at a receptor-proximal point to enhance Lyn kinase-dependent signaling pathways that modulate both immediate-phase degranulation and late-phase cytokine production downstream of FcεRI ligation.

  16. Dual subcellular compartment delivery of doxorubicin to overcome drug resistant and enhance antitumor activity

    PubMed Central

    Song, Yan-feng; Liu, Dao-zhou; Cheng, Ying; Liu, Miao; Ye, Wei-liang; Zhang, Bang-le; Liu, Xin-you; Zhou, Si-yuan

    2015-01-01

    In order to overcome drug resistant and enhance antitumor activity of DOX, a new pH-sensitive micelle (DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA) was prepared to simultaneously deliver DOX to nucleus and mitochondria. Drug released from DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA showed a pH-dependent manner. DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA induced the depolarization of mitochondria and apoptosis in MDA-MB-231/ADR cells and A549 cells, which resulted in the high cytotoxicity of DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA against MDA-MB-231/ADR cells and A549 cells. Confocal microscopy confirmed that DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA simultaneously delivered DQA-DOX and DOX to the mitochondria and nucleus of tumor cell. After DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA was injected to the tumor-bearing nude mice by the tail vein, DOX was mainly found in tumor tissue. But DOX was widely distributed in the whole body after the administration of free DOX. Compared with free DOX, the same dose of DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA significantly inhibited the growth of DOX-resistant tumor in tumor-bearing mice without obvious systemic toxicity. Therefore, dual subcellular compartment delivery of DOX greatly enhanced the antitumor activity of DOX on DOX-resistant tumor. DOX/DQA-DOX@DSPE-hyd-PEG-AA has the potential in target therapy for DOX-resistant tumor. PMID:26530454

  17. Enhancing the T-shaped learning profile when teaching hydrology using data, modeling, and visualization activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanchez, C. A.; Ruddell, B. L.; Schiesser, R.; Merwade, V.

    2015-07-01

    Previous research has suggested that the use of more authentic learning activities can produce more robust and durable knowledge gains. This is consistent with calls within civil engineering education, specifically hydrology, that suggest that curricula should more often include professional perspective and data analysis skills to better develop the "T-shaped" knowledge profile of a professional hydrologist (i.e., professional breadth combined with technical depth). It was expected that the inclusion of a data driven simulation lab exercise that was contextualized within a real-world situation and more consistent with the job duties of a professional in the field, would provide enhanced learning and appreciation of job duties beyond more conventional paper-and-pencil exercises in a lower division undergraduate course. Results indicate that while students learned in both conditions, learning was enhanced for the data-driven simulation group in nearly every content area. This pattern of results suggests that the use of data-driven modeling and visualization activities can have a significant positive impact on instruction. This increase in learning likely facilitates the development of student perspective and conceptual mastery, enabling students to make better choices about their studies, while also better preparing them for work as a professional in the field.

  18. Enhancing the T-shaped learning profile when teaching hydrology using data, modeling, and visualization activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanchez, Christopher A.; Ruddell, Benjamin L.; Schiesser, Roy; Merwade, Venkatesh

    2016-03-01

    Previous research has suggested that the use of more authentic learning activities can produce more robust and durable knowledge gains. This is consistent with calls within civil engineering education, specifically hydrology, that suggest that curricula should more often include professional perspective and data analysis skills to better develop the "T-shaped" knowledge profile of a professional hydrologist (i.e., professional breadth combined with technical depth). It was expected that the inclusion of a data-driven simulation lab exercise that was contextualized within a real-world situation and more consistent with the job duties of a professional in the field, would provide enhanced learning and appreciation of job duties beyond more conventional paper-and-pencil exercises in a lower-division undergraduate course. Results indicate that while students learned in both conditions, learning was enhanced for the data-driven simulation group in nearly every content area. This pattern of results suggests that the use of data-driven modeling and visualization activities can have a significant positive impact on instruction. This increase in learning likely facilitates the development of student perspective and conceptual mastery, enabling students to make better choices about their studies, while also better preparing them for work as a professional in the field.

  19. Resveratrol enhances HBV replication through activating Sirt1-PGC-1α-PPARα pathway

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Yixian; Li, Yongjun; Huang, Chenjie; Ying, Lixiong; Xue, Jihua; Wu, Haicong; Chen, Zhi; Yang, Zhenggang

    2016-01-01

    The population of hepatitis B combined with a number of metabolic disorders is increasing significantly. Resveratrol (RSV) has been used as a preclinical drug for the treatment of the metabolic disorders. However, the impact of RSV on HBV replication remains unknown. In this study, the HBV-expressing hepatocelluar carcinoma cell line and mouse model created by hydrodynamic injection of viral DNA were used. We found that RSV activates Sirt1, which in turn deacetylates PGC-1α and subsequently increases the transcriptional activity of PPARα, leading to the enhanced HBV transcription and replication in vitro and in vivo. In addition, we found that this pathway is also required for fasting-induced HBV transcription. Taken together, this study identifies that RSV enhances HBV transcription and replication especially acting on the core promoter, which depends on Sirt1-PGC-1α-PPARα pathway. We conclude that RSV may exacerbate the progression of hepatitis B and that patients with hepatitis B infection should be cautious taking RSV as a dietary supplement. PMID:27098390

  20. High quantum yield graphene quantum dots decorated TiO2 nanotubes for enhancing photocatalytic activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qu, Ailan; Xie, Haolong; Xu, Xinmei; Zhang, Yangyu; Wen, Shengwu; Cui, Yifan

    2016-07-01

    Graphene quantum dots (GQDs) with high quantum yield (about 23.6% at an excitation wavelength of 320 nm) and GQDs/TiO2 nanotubes (GQDs/TiO2 NTs) composites were achieved by a simple hydrothermal method at low temperature. Photoluminescence characterization showed that the GQDs exhibited the down-conversion PL features at excitation from 300 to 420 nm and up-conversion photoluminescence in the range of 600-800 nm. The photocatalytic activity of prepared GQDs/TiO2 NTs composites on the degradation of methyl orange (MO) was significantly enhanced compared with that of pure TiO2 nanotubes (TiO2 NTs). For the composites coupling with 1.5%, 2.5% and 3.5% GQDs, the degradation of MO after 20 min irradiation under UV-vis light irradiation (λ = 380-780 nm) were 80.52%, 94.64% and 51.91%, respectively, which are much higher than that of pure TiO2 NTs (35.41%). It was inferred from the results of characterization that the improved photocatalytic activity of the GQDs/TiO2 NTs composites was attributed to the synergetic effect of up-conversion properties of the GQDs, enhanced visible light absorption and efficient separation of photogenerated electron-holes of the GQDs/TiO2 composite.

  1. Tim-3 enhances FcεRI-proximal signaling to modulate mast cell activation

    PubMed Central

    Phong, Binh L.; Avery, Lyndsay; Sumpter, Tina L.; Gorman, Jacob V.; Watkins, Simon C.; Colgan, John D.

    2015-01-01

    T cell (or transmembrane) immunoglobulin and mucin domain protein 3 (Tim-3) has attracted significant attention as a novel immune checkpoint receptor (ICR) on chronically stimulated, often dysfunctional, T cells. Antibodies to Tim-3 can enhance antiviral and antitumor immune responses. Tim-3 is also constitutively expressed by mast cells, NK cells and specific subsets of macrophages and dendritic cells. There is ample evidence for a positive role for Tim-3 in these latter cell types, which is at odds with the model of Tim-3 as an inhibitory molecule on T cells. At this point, little is known about the molecular mechanisms by which Tim-3 regulates the function of T cells or other cell types. We have focused on defining the effects of Tim-3 ligation on mast cell activation, as these cells constitutively express Tim-3 and are activated through an ITAM-containing receptor for IgE (FcεRI), using signaling pathways analogous to those in T cells. Using a variety of gain- and loss-of-function approaches, we find that Tim-3 acts at a receptor-proximal point to enhance Lyn kinase-dependent signaling pathways that modulate both immediate-phase degranulation and late-phase cytokine production downstream of FcεRI ligation. PMID:26598760

  2. Enhanced antimicrobial activity of silver nanoparticles-Lonicera Japonica Thunb combo.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lin; Aguilar, Zoraida P; Qu, Feng; Xu, Hong; Xu, Hengyi; Wei, Hua

    2016-02-01

    Silver metals have long been known to possess antimicrobial properties. Recently, even the nanoparticle version of silver (AgNPs) has also been established as antimicrobials. In this study AgNPs were combined with extracts of the medicinal plant Chinese honeysuckle, Lonicera japonica Thunb. The antimicrobial activity of the AgNPs-herb was tested against pathogenic Escherichia coli CMCC44113. Using different AgNPs or herb (honeysuckle water extract or HWE) ratios in the presence of a fixed concentration of E. coli CMCC44113, potencies were found to be proportional with concentrations. The antimicrobial activities of AgNPs-HWE combo were significant enhanced, when compared with solely AgNPs or HWE. Thus, atomic force microscopic and propidium monoazide-PCR were used to probe the damages caused by AgNPs-HWE combo on the cell morphology and cell membrane integrity of E. coli. The mechanism of AgNPs-HWE combo against E. coli may attribute to AgNPs leads to cell wall lysis and damages cell membrane integrity, and thus increases the penetration of HWE into the bacterium, which results in more serious damage to bacterial cells. These findings indicated that AgNPs-herb was more potent than the AgNPs alone and holds promise for the development of nanoparticle enhanced herbal pharmaceuticals. PMID:26766870

  3. Gold Nanoparticles Enhance the Anticancer Activity of Gallic Acid against Cholangiocarcinoma Cell Lines.

    PubMed

    Rattanata, Narintorn; Daduang, Sakda; Wongwattanakul, Molin; Leelayuwat, Chanvit; Limpaiboon, Temduang; Lekphrom, Ratsami; Sandee, Alisa; Boonsiri, Patcharee; Chio-Srichan, Sirinart; Daduang, Jureerut

    2015-01-01

    Gold nanoparticles (GNPs) were conjugated with gallic acid (GA) at various concentrations between 30 and 150 μM and characterized using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and UV-Vis spectroscopy (UV-VIS). The anticancer activities of the gallic acid-stabilized gold nanoparticles against well-differentiated (M213) and moderately differentiated (M214) adenocarcinomas were then determined using a neutral red assay. The GA mechanism of action was evaluated using Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) microspectroscopy. Distinctive features of the FTIR spectra between the control and GA-treated cells were confirmed by principal component analysis (PCA). The surface plasmon resonance spectra of the GNPs had a maximum absorption at 520 nm, whereas GNPs-GA shifted the maximum absorption values. In an in vitro study, the complexed GNPs-GA had an increased ability to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells that was statistically significant (P<0.0001) in both M213 and M214 cells compared to GA alone, indicating that the anticancer activity of GA can be improved by conjugation with GNPs. Moreover, PCA revealed that exposure of the tested cells to GA resulted in significant changes in their cell membrane lipids and fatty acids, which may enhance the efficacy of this anticancer activity regarding apoptosis pathways.

  4. Enhanced antitumoral activity of doxorubicin against lung cancer cells using biodegradable poly(butylcyanoacrylate) nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Melguizo, Consolación; Cabeza, Laura; Prados, Jose; Ortiz, Raúl; Caba, Octavio; Rama, Ana R; Delgado, Ángel V; Arias, José L

    2015-01-01

    Doxorubicin (Dox) is widely used for the combined chemotherapy of solid tumors. However, the use of these drug associations in lung cancer has low antitumor efficacy. To improve its efficacious delivery and activity in lung adenocarcinoma cells, we developed a biodegradable and noncytotoxic nanoplatform based on biodegradable poly(butylcyanoacrylate) (PBCA). The reproducible fo