Science.gov

Sample records for activity tests revealed

  1. Interspecific metabolic diversity of root-colonizing endophytic fungi revealed by enzyme activity tests.

    PubMed

    Knapp, Dániel G; Kovács, Gábor M

    2016-12-01

    Although dark septate endophytes (DSE) represent a worldwide dispersed form group of root-colonizing endophytic fungi, our knowledge on their role in ecosystem functioning is far limited. In this study, we aimed to test if functional diversity exists among DSE fungi representing different lineages of root endophytic fungal community of semiarid sandy grasslands. To address this question and to gain general information on function of DSE fungi, we adopted api-ZYM and BioLog FF assays to study those non-sporulating filamentous fungi and characterized the metabolic activity of 15 different DSE species. Although there were striking differences among the species, all of the substrates tested were utilized by the DSE fungi. When endophytes characteristic to grasses and non-grass host plants were separately considered, we found that the whole substrate repertoire was used by both groups. This might illustrate the complementary functional diversity of the communities root endophytic plant-associated fungi. The broad spectra of substrates utilized by these root endophytes illustrate the functional importance of their diversity, which can play role not only in nutrient mobilization and uptake of plants from with nutrient poor soils, but also in general plant performance and ecosystem functioning.

  2. Testing reveals proppant distribution

    SciTech Connect

    Crump, J.B. ); Ekstrand, B.B. ); Almond, S.W. )

    1988-10-31

    Sand distribution tests, undertaken to answer inquiries from a producing company, have shown that proppant placed during a hydraulic fracture treatment is evenly distributed into the perforated interval. Therefore, for planning purposes, a good assumption is that all perforations will pass essentially equal volumes of proppant, provided perforation quality is uniform, perforations are open, and bottom hole treating pressure is constant across the interval. Under simulated conditions, a fluid viscosity of 30 cp (511 sec/sup -1/) allowed 20/40 sand to ''turn to corner'' and pass through perforations with minimal stratification. This finding refutes the theory held by some that the bottom perforation is ''slugged'' with heavier concentration of sand than the upper perforations, and the theory's logical extension that after the bottom perforation is filled, it plugs and the perforation just above becomes the next bottom until the entire perforated interval is screened out. Tests described in this article were part of a program implemented to analyze causes of screen outs encountered in fracturing operations.

  3. A new digitized method of the compulsive gnawing test revealed dopaminergic activity of salvinorin A in vivo.

    PubMed

    Phipps, Stephen M; Butterweck, Veronika

    2010-09-01

    The compulsive gnawing (CG) test has been used for numerous years as an assay to determine the dopaminergic activity of various compounds. We developed a new method of quantification via a digitization step which allowed a more precise measurement of the gnawing activity. It was the aim of the present study to explore possible dopaminergic effects of salvinorin A (SA), the major active compound of Salvia divinorum, using the new digitized CG test. A group of experiments using male C57BL/6 mice were performed to validate the new method of quantification showing only significant increases of gnawing when the dopamine reuptake inhibitors buproprion (20 mg/kg, p.0.) and nomifensine (10 mg/kg, i.p.) were given concomitantly with apomorphine (10 mg/kg, i.p.). Different concentrations of the SA (1.0, 2.5, 5, and 10 mg/kg, i.p.) were tested with positive dopaminergic activity when administered with apomorphine which differed from the semisynthetic counterpart U-69593. Furthermore, the activity observed with SA was unsuccessfully antagonized by the κ-opioid receptor antagonist norbinaltorphimine (NorBNI; 10 and 20 mg/kg, i.p.), while the dopamine antagonist haloperidol did successfully block (0.06 mg/kg, i.p.) the gnawing activity seen with SA. Our data further strengthen the argument that salvinorin A is not a selective κ-opioid receptor agonist and is the first in vivo study that veers from salvinorin A acting solely like its synthetic counterparts. Furthermore, the digitized CG test system used in this study provides a new computational method to accurately detect behavior associated with dopaminergic neurotransmission.

  4. Protease analysis by neoepitope approach reveals the activation of MMP-9 is achieved proteolytically in a test tissue cartilage model involved in bone formation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Eunice R; Lamplugh, Lisa; Kluczyk, Beata; Mort, John S; Leblond, Charles Philippe

    2006-09-01

    A principle of regulation of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity has been introduced as the cysteine-switch mechanism of activation (Springman et al. 1990). According to this mechanism, a critical Cys residue found in the auto-inhibitory propeptide domain of latent proenzyme is important to determine whether or not activation is turned on or off. The mechanism further allows for multiple modes of activation. To determine whether or not activation is accomplished proteolytically within a rat test cartilage model, protease analysis by the neoepitope approach, which relies upon a set of antibodies, was applied. One is used to identify the MMP-9 proenzyme bearing the critical cysteine residue, the other to identify any enzyme present bearing a new NH2-terminus 89FQTFD. This is indicative of MMP-9 lacking the cysteine switch. The antibody set has been applied to frozen tissue sections and analyzed by light and electron microscopic methods. Results reveal that activation of the MMP-9 protease involves limited proteolysis resulting in propeptide domain release. Here we report the observed changes of protease form to indigenous cells and extracellular matrix, thereby making it possible to uncover the features of MMP-9 activation within a specified set of tissue circumstances where a cartilage model is transformed into definitive bone. This manuscript contains online supplemental material at http://www.jhc.org. Please visit this article online to view these materials.

  5. [Internship-test reveals increased knowledge gaps].

    PubMed

    Östgren, Carl-Johan; Krook-Brandt, Margareta; Carlborg, Andreas

    2016-04-08

    We present the results of the medical knowledge test after fulfilled internship for Swedish medical authorization during the years 2009 to the spring of 2015. A total of 7,613 tests were analyzed. Interns graduated from Swedish universities failed in 2.7% to 3.8% of the test moments. Interns who graduated from countries within the European Union (EU) failed in 21.2% and interns graduated from a non-EU country failed in 41.6%. The results from those who graduated from EU and non-EU countries have worsened compared to an earlier study in 2009. Proper measures have now to be implemented for doctors graduated from a non-Swedish university to improve the outcome and introduction to the Swedish health care system.

  6. Testing Tests on Active Galactic Nucleus Microvariability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Diego, José A.

    2010-03-01

    Literature on optical and infrared microvariability in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) reflects a diversity of statistical tests and strategies to detect tiny variations in the light curves of these sources. Comparison between the results obtained using different methodologies is difficult, and the pros and cons of each statistical method are often badly understood or even ignored. Even worse, improperly tested methodologies are becoming more and more common, and biased results may be misleading with regard to the origin of the AGN microvariability. This paper intends to point future research on AGN microvariability toward the use of powerful and well-tested statistical methodologies, providing a reference for choosing the best strategy to obtain unbiased results. Light curves monitoring has been simulated for quasars and for reference and comparison stars. Changes for the quasar light curves include both Gaussian fluctuations and linear variations. Simulated light curves have been analyzed using χ2 tests, F tests for variances, one-way analyses of variance and C-statistics. Statistical Type I and Type II errors, which indicate the robustness and the power of the tests, have been obtained in each case. One-way analyses of variance and χ2 prove to be powerful and robust estimators for microvariations, while the C-statistic is not a reliable methodology and its use should be avoided.

  7. TESTING TESTS ON ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI MICROVARIABILITY

    SciTech Connect

    De Diego, Jose A.

    2010-03-15

    Literature on optical and infrared microvariability in active galactic nuclei (AGNs) reflects a diversity of statistical tests and strategies to detect tiny variations in the light curves of these sources. Comparison between the results obtained using different methodologies is difficult, and the pros and cons of each statistical method are often badly understood or even ignored. Even worse, improperly tested methodologies are becoming more and more common, and biased results may be misleading with regard to the origin of the AGN microvariability. This paper intends to point future research on AGN microvariability toward the use of powerful and well-tested statistical methodologies, providing a reference for choosing the best strategy to obtain unbiased results. Light curves monitoring has been simulated for quasars and for reference and comparison stars. Changes for the quasar light curves include both Gaussian fluctuations and linear variations. Simulated light curves have been analyzed using {chi}{sup 2} tests, F tests for variances, one-way analyses of variance and C-statistics. Statistical Type I and Type II errors, which indicate the robustness and the power of the tests, have been obtained in each case. One-way analyses of variance and {chi}{sup 2} prove to be powerful and robust estimators for microvariations, while the C-statistic is not a reliable methodology and its use should be avoided.

  8. Deuterium reveals the dynamics of notch activation.

    PubMed

    Raphael, Kopan

    2011-04-13

    Notch activation requires unfolding of a juxtamembrane negative regulatory domain (NRR). Tiyanont et al. (2011) analyzed the dynamics of NRR unfolding in the presence of EGTA. As predicted from the crystal structure and deletion analyses, the lin-Notch repeats unfold first, facilitating access by ADAM proteases. Surprisingly, the heterodimerization domain remains stable.

  9. Estimating the probability of failure when testing reveals no failures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, Keith W.; Morell, Larry J.; Noonan, Robert E.; Park, Stephen K.; Nicol, David M.; Murrill, Branson W.; Voas, Jeffrey M.

    1992-01-01

    Formulas for estimating the probability of failure when testing reveals no errors are introduced. These formulas incorporate random testing results, information about the input distribution, and prior assumptions about the probability of failure of the software. The formulas are not restricted to equally likely input distributions, and the probability of failure estimate can be adjusted when assumptions about the input distribution change. The formulas are based on a discrete sample space statistical model of software and include Bayesian prior assumptions. Reusable software and software in life-critical applications are particularly appropriate candidates for this type of analysis.

  10. ID-Check: Online Concealed Information Test Reveals True Identity.

    PubMed

    Verschuere, Bruno; Kleinberg, Bennett

    2016-01-01

    The Internet has already changed people's lives considerably and is likely to drastically change forensic research. We developed a web-based test to reveal concealed autobiographical information. Initial studies identified a number of conditions that affect diagnostic efficiency. By combining these moderators, this study investigated the full potential of the online ID-check. Participants (n = 101) tried to hide their identity and claimed a false identity in a reaction time-based Concealed Information Test. Half of the participants were presented with personal details (e.g., first name, last name, birthday), whereas the others only saw irrelevant details. Results showed that participants' true identity could be detected with high accuracy (AUC = 0.98; overall accuracy: 86-94%). Online memory detection can reliably and validly detect whether someone is hiding their true identity. This suggests that online memory detection might become a valuable tool for forensic applications.

  11. Color-Shape Associations Revealed with Implicit Association Tests

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Na; Tanaka, Kanji; Watanabe, Katsumi

    2015-01-01

    Kandinsky proposed a correspondence theory that suggests associations between specific colors and shapes (i.e., circle-blue, square-red, triangle-yellow). Makin and Wuerger tested the theory using the Implicit Association Test (IAT) and did not find clear evidence for Kandinsky’s color-shape associations among British participants. In the present study, we first replicated the previous study among Japanese participants and found similar results to those of Makin and Wuerger, showing little support for Kandinsky’s theory. In the subsequent experiment, we tested another set of color-shape associations that had been revealed by using an explicit matching method (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow) in Japanese participants. The IAT tests showed that response times were significantly faster when circle-red, square-blue, and triangle-yellow combinations were mapped onto the same response key, rather than different key combinations, indicating that these color-shape combinations were encoded. These results provide the first empirical evidence that color-shape associations can be measured by indirect behavioral methods, and in particular, Japanese people’s color-shape associations (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow) can be observed by both direct and indirect experimental methods. PMID:25625717

  12. Color-shape associations revealed with implicit association tests.

    PubMed

    Chen, Na; Tanaka, Kanji; Watanabe, Katsumi

    2015-01-01

    Kandinsky proposed a correspondence theory that suggests associations between specific colors and shapes (i.e., circle-blue, square-red, triangle-yellow). Makin and Wuerger tested the theory using the Implicit Association Test (IAT) and did not find clear evidence for Kandinsky's color-shape associations among British participants. In the present study, we first replicated the previous study among Japanese participants and found similar results to those of Makin and Wuerger, showing little support for Kandinsky's theory. In the subsequent experiment, we tested another set of color-shape associations that had been revealed by using an explicit matching method (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow) in Japanese participants. The IAT tests showed that response times were significantly faster when circle-red, square-blue, and triangle-yellow combinations were mapped onto the same response key, rather than different key combinations, indicating that these color-shape combinations were encoded. These results provide the first empirical evidence that color-shape associations can be measured by indirect behavioral methods, and in particular, Japanese people's color-shape associations (circle-red, square-blue, triangle-yellow) can be observed by both direct and indirect experimental methods.

  13. Activity screening of environmental metagenomic libraries reveals novel carboxylesterase families

    PubMed Central

    Popovic, Ana; Hai, Tran; Tchigvintsev, Anatoly; Hajighasemi, Mahbod; Nocek, Boguslaw; Khusnutdinova, Anna N.; Brown, Greg; Glinos, Julia; Flick, Robert; Skarina, Tatiana; Chernikova, Tatyana N.; Yim, Veronica; Brüls, Thomas; Paslier, Denis Le; Yakimov, Michail M.; Joachimiak, Andrzej; Ferrer, Manuel; Golyshina, Olga V.; Savchenko, Alexei; Golyshin, Peter N.; Yakunin, Alexander F.

    2017-01-01

    Metagenomics has made accessible an enormous reserve of global biochemical diversity. To tap into this vast resource of novel enzymes, we have screened over one million clones from metagenome DNA libraries derived from sixteen different environments for carboxylesterase activity and identified 714 positive hits. We have validated the esterase activity of 80 selected genes, which belong to 17 different protein families including unknown and cyclase-like proteins. Three metagenomic enzymes exhibited lipase activity, and seven proteins showed polyester depolymerization activity against polylactic acid and polycaprolactone. Detailed biochemical characterization of four new enzymes revealed their substrate preference, whereas their catalytic residues were identified using site-directed mutagenesis. The crystal structure of the metal-ion dependent esterase MGS0169 from the amidohydrolase superfamily revealed a novel active site with a bound unknown ligand. Thus, activity-centered metagenomics has revealed diverse enzymes and novel families of microbial carboxylesterases, whose activity could not have been predicted using bioinformatics tools. PMID:28272521

  14. Active Matrix OLED Test Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salazar, George

    2013-01-01

    This report focuses on the limited environmental testing of the AMOLED display performed as an engineering evaluation by The NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC)-specifically. EMI. Thermal Vac, and radiation tests. The AMOLED display is an active-matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) technology. The testing provided an initial understanding of the technology and its suitability for space applications. Relative to light emitting diode (LED) displays or liquid crystal displays (LCDs), AMOLED displays provide a superior viewing experience even though they are much lighter and smaller, produce higher contrast ratio and richer colors, and require less power to operate than LCDs. However, AMOLED technology has not been demonstrated in a space environment. Therefore, some risks with the technology must be addressed before they can be seriously considered for human spaceflight. The environmental tests provided preliminary performance data on the ability of the display technology to handle some of the simulated induced space/spacecraft environments that an AMOLED display will see during a spacecraft certification test program. This engineering evaluation is part of a Space Act Agreement (SM) between The NASA/JSC and Honeywell International (HI) as a collaborative effort to evaluate the potential use of AMOLED technology for future human spaceflight missions- both government-led and commercial. Under this SM, HI is responsible for doing optical performance evaluation, as well as temperature and touch screen studies. The NASA/JSC is responsible for performing environmental testing comprised of EMI, Thermal Vac, and radiation tests. Additionally, as part of the testing, limited optical data was acquired to assess performance as the display was subjected to the induced environments. The NASA will benefit from this engineering evaluation by understanding AMOLED suitability for future use in space as well as becoming a smarter buyer (or developer) of the technology. HI benefits

  15. Boron-10 ABUNCL Active Testing

    SciTech Connect

    Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Lintereur, Azaree T.; Siciliano, Edward R.

    2013-07-09

    The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards and Security (NA-241) is supporting the project Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the development of a 3He proportional counter alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a system based upon 10B-lined proportional tubes in a configuration typical for 3He-based coincidence counter applications. This report provides results from testing of the active mode of the General Electric Reuter-Stokes Alternative Boron-Based Uranium Neutron Coincidence Collar (ABUNCL) at Los Alamos National Laboratory using sources and fuel pins.

  16. Exercise Test Performance Reveals Evidence of the Cardiorespiratory Fitness Hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Billinger, Sandra A; Vidoni, Eric D; Morris, Jill K; Thyfault, John P; Burns, Jeffrey M

    2017-04-01

    Positive physiologic and cognitive responses to aerobic exercise have resulted in a proposed cardiorespiratory (CR) fitness hypothesis in which fitness gains drive changes leading to cognitive benefit. The purpose of this study was to directly assess the CR fitness hypothesis. Using data from an aerobic exercise trial, we examined individuals who completed cardiopulmonary and cognitive testing at baseline and 26 weeks. Change in cognitive test performance was not related to CR fitness change (r(2) = .06, p = .06). However, in the subset of individuals who gave excellent effort during exercise testing, change in cognitive test performance was related to CR fitness change (r(2) = .33, p < .01). This was largely due to change in the cognitive domain of attention (r(2) = .36, p < .01). The magnitude of change was not explained by duration of exercise. Our findings support further investigation of the CR fitness hypothesis and mechanisms by which physiologic adaptation may drive cognitive change.

  17. A novel escapable social interaction test reveals that social behavior and mPFC activation during an escapable social encounter are altered by post-weaning social isolation and are dependent on the aggressiveness of the stimulus rat.

    PubMed

    Goodell, Dayton J; Ahern, Megan A; Baynard, Jessica; Wall, Vanessa L; Bland, Sondra T

    2017-01-15

    Post-weaning social isolation (PSI) has been shown to increase aggressive behavior and alter medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) function in social species such as rats. Here we developed a novel escapable social interaction test (ESIT) allowing for the quantification of escape and social behaviors in addition to mPFC activation in response to an aggressive or nonaggressive stimulus rat. Male rats were exposed to 3 weeks of PSI (ISO) or group (GRP) housing, and exposed to 3 trials, with either no trial, all trials, or the last trial only with a stimulus rat. Analysis of social behaviors indicated that ISO rats spent less time in the escape chamber and more time engaged in social interaction, aggressive grooming, and boxing than did GRP rats. Interestingly, during the third trial all rats engaged in more of the quantified social behaviors and spent less time escaping in response to aggressive but not nonaggressive stimulus rats. Rats exposed to nonaggressive stimulus rats on the third trial had greater c-fos and ARC immunoreactivity in the mPFC than those exposed to an aggressive stimulus rat. Conversely, a social encounter produced an increase in large PSD-95 punctae in the mPFC independently of trial number, but only in ISO rats exposed to an aggressive stimulus rat. The results presented here demonstrate that PSI increases interaction time and aggressive behaviors during escapable social interaction, and that the aggressiveness of the stimulus rat in a social encounter is an important component of behavioral and neural outcomes for both isolation and group-reared rats.

  18. Small molecules reveal an alternative mechanism of Bax activation

    PubMed Central

    Brahmbhatt, Hetal; Uehling, David; Al-awar, Rima; Leber, Brian; Andrews, David

    2016-01-01

    The pro-apoptotic protein Bax commits a cell to death by permeabilizing the mitochondrial outer membrane (MOM). To obtain small-molecule probes for elucidating the molecular mechanism(s) of Bax activation, we screened for compounds that induced Bax-mediated liposome permeabilization. We identified five structurally different small molecules that promoted both Bax targeting to and oligomerization at membranes. All five compounds initiated Bax oligomerization in the absence of membranes by a mechanism unlike Bax activation by Bcl-2 homology 3 domain (BH3) proteins. Some of the compounds induced Bax/Bak-dependent apoptosis in cells. Activation of Bax by the most active compound was poorly inhibited by the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-XL and requires a cysteine residue at position 126 of Bax that is not required for activation by BH3 proteins. Our results reveal a novel pathway for Bax activation independent of pro-apoptotic BH3 proteins that may have important implications for the regulation of Bax activity in cells. PMID:26916338

  19. Pressure test data reveal reservoir barriers/faults

    SciTech Connect

    Hurd, J.D.

    1984-07-30

    A review of transient pressure test data from an oil reservoir in Libya indicated not only the suspected fault barriers, but also the non-sealing portions of the faults. Extensive seismic data indicated much faulting, and directional trends had been interpreted to be generally northwest-southeast. The reservoir is a heterogeneous dolomite with average permeability of 40 to 50 md and contains neither natural fractures not stratification. Vertical displacement (throw) of each fault block is indicated to be within the range of the dolomite thickness, i.e., 40 to 180 ft. Therefore, when the fault throw is greater than reservoir thickness there is sealing, and when the throw is less than reservoir thickness the faults are non-sealing.

  20. Standardization Activities in TMF Test Methodologies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Verrilli, M. J.; Castelli, M. G.; Bressers, J.; Oehmke, R. L. T.

    1996-01-01

    No standard test practice currently exists for strain-controlled thermomechanical fatigue (TMF) testing. This paper discusses recent activities which lay the foundation for standardization of TMF test methods. Specifically, the paper documents the results of two interlaboratory TMF test programs, identifies key TMF symposia and workshops, and discusses efforts toward drafting a TMF standard test practice.

  1. 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

    2016-02-04

    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.

  2. Active medulloblastoma enhancers reveal subgroup-specific cellular origins

    PubMed Central

    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.

    2016-01-01

    Summary 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. Using H3K27ac and BRD4 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 are responsible for subgroup divergence and implicate 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. PMID:26814967

  3. Recombinant Human Peptidoglycan Recognition Proteins Reveal Antichlamydial Activity.

    PubMed

    Bobrovsky, Pavel; Manuvera, Valentin; Polina, Nadezhda; Podgorny, Oleg; Prusakov, Kirill; Govorun, Vadim; Lazarev, Vassili

    2016-07-01

    Peptidoglycan recognition proteins (PGLYRPs) are innate immune components that recognize the peptidoglycan and lipopolysaccharides of bacteria and exhibit antibacterial activity. Recently, the obligate intracellular parasite Chlamydia trachomatis was shown to have peptidoglycan. However, the antichlamydial activity of PGLYRPs has not yet been demonstrated. The aim of our study was to test whether PGLYRPs exhibit antibacterial activity against C. trachomatis Thus, we cloned the regions containing the human Pglyrp1, Pglyrp2, Pglyrp3, and Pglyrp4 genes for subsequent expression in human cell lines. We obtained stable HeLa cell lines that secrete recombinant human PGLYRPs into culture medium. We also generated purified recombinant PGLYRP1, -2, and -4 and confirmed their activities against Gram-positive (Bacillus subtilis) and Gram-negative (Escherichia coli) bacteria. Furthermore, we examined the activities of recombinant PGLYRPs against C. trachomatis and determined their MICs. We also observed a decrease in the infectious ability of chlamydial elementary bodies in the next generation after a single exposure to PGLYRPs. Finally, we demonstrated that PGLYRPs attach to C. trachomatis elementary bodies and activate the expression of the chlamydial two-component stress response system. Thus, PGLYRPs inhibit the development of chlamydial infection.

  4. Recombinant Human Peptidoglycan Recognition Proteins Reveal Antichlamydial Activity

    PubMed Central

    Manuvera, Valentin; Polina, Nadezhda; Podgorny, Oleg; Prusakov, Kirill; Govorun, Vadim; Lazarev, Vassili

    2016-01-01

    Peptidoglycan recognition proteins (PGLYRPs) are innate immune components that recognize the peptidoglycan and lipopolysaccharides of bacteria and exhibit antibacterial activity. Recently, the obligate intracellular parasite Chlamydia trachomatis was shown to have peptidoglycan. However, the antichlamydial activity of PGLYRPs has not yet been demonstrated. The aim of our study was to test whether PGLYRPs exhibit antibacterial activity against C. trachomatis. Thus, we cloned the regions containing the human Pglyrp1, Pglyrp2, Pglyrp3, and Pglyrp4 genes for subsequent expression in human cell lines. We obtained stable HeLa cell lines that secrete recombinant human PGLYRPs into culture medium. We also generated purified recombinant PGLYRP1, -2, and -4 and confirmed their activities against Gram-positive (Bacillus subtilis) and Gram-negative (Escherichia coli) bacteria. Furthermore, we examined the activities of recombinant PGLYRPs against C. trachomatis and determined their MICs. We also observed a decrease in the infectious ability of chlamydial elementary bodies in the next generation after a single exposure to PGLYRPs. Finally, we demonstrated that PGLYRPs attach to C. trachomatis elementary bodies and activate the expression of the chlamydial two-component stress response system. Thus, PGLYRPs inhibit the development of chlamydial infection. PMID:27160295

  5. Active Mars Revealed through HiRISE DTMs and Orthoimages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattson, Sarah; McEwen, Alfred S.; Bridges, Nathan; Byrne, Shane; Chojnacki, Matthew; Daubar, Ingrid; Dundas, Colin; Russell, Patrick

    2014-11-01

    Before the arrival of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) with the High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE), the amount of surface activity on Mars was not well known. HiRISE repeat imaging (often at ~30 cm/pixel), combined with the ability to take stereo images and generate high resolution Digital Terrain Models (DTMs) reveals the many types of surface processes that are currently active on Mars. Examples of active processes on Mars studied with HiRISE data include aeolian activity [Bridges et al., 2012, Nature 485; Chojnacki et al., 2014, Icarus 232], Recurring Slope Lineae (RSL) [McEwen et al., 2011, Science 333; 2014, Nature Geoscience 7], active gullies [Dundas et al., 2012, Icarus 220], polar processes [Hansen et al., 2011, Science 331; Portyankina et al. 2013, AGU], new impacts [Byrne et al., 2009, Science 325; Daubar et al., 2013, Icarus 225; Dundas et al., 2014, JGR 119], and north polar scarp avalanches [Russell et al., 2008, GRL 35, 2014, LPSC]. These studies utilize images from multiple Mars years and seasons. We generate animated gifs with sequences of orthorectified images to analyze temporal changes (see http://www.uahirise.org/sim/). HiRISE DTMs and orthoimages can be used to quantitatively map and record changes in geospatial software. More than 200 DTMs and 400 orthoimages are available through the Planetary Data System (see http://uahirise.org/dtm). Three-band color (blue-green, red, and near infrared) orthoimages are also available in many cases. The ability to monitor the surface of Mars at high spatial and temporal resolution provides insight into seasonal and annual changes, further increasing our understanding of Mars as an active planet.

  6. Reveal Salmonella 2.0 test for detection of Salmonella spp. in foods and environmental samples. Performance Tested Method 960801.

    PubMed

    Hoerner, Rebecca; Feldpausch, Jill; Gray, R Lucas; Curry, Stephanie; Islam, Zahidul; Goldy, Tim; Klein, Frank; Tadese, Theodros; Rice, Jennifer; Mozola, Mark

    2011-01-01

    Reveal Salmonella 2.0 is an improved version of the original Reveal Salmonella lateral flow immunoassay and is applicable to the detection of Salmonella enterica serogroups A-E in a variety of food and environmental samples. A Performance Tested Method validation study was conducted to compare performance of the Reveal 2.0 method with that of the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Food Safety and Inspection Service or U.S. Food and Drug Administration/Bacteriological Analytical Manual reference culture methods for detection of Salmonella spp. in chicken carcass rinse, raw ground turkey, raw ground beef, hot dogs, raw shrimp, a ready-to-eat meal product, dry pet food, ice cream, spinach, cantaloupe, peanut butter, stainless steel surface, and sprout irrigation water. In a total of 17 trials performed internally and four trials performed in an independent laboratory, there were no statistically significant differences in performance of the Reveal 2.0 and reference culture procedures as determined by Chi-square analysis, with the exception of one trial with stainless steel surface and one trial with sprout irrigation water where there were significantly more positive results by the Reveal 2.0 method. Considering all data generated in testing food samples using enrichment procedures specifically designed for the Reveal method, overall sensitivity of the Reveal method relative to the reference culture methods was 99%. In testing environmental samples, sensitivity of the Reveal method relative to the reference culture method was 164%. For select foods, use of the Reveal test in conjunction with reference method enrichment resulted in overall sensitivity of 92%. There were no unconfirmed positive results on uninoculated control samples in any trials for specificity of 100%. In inclusivity testing, 102 different Salmonella serovars belonging to serogroups A-E were tested and 99 were consistently positive in the Reveal test. In exclusivity testing of 33 strains of non

  7. Covert Waking Brain Activity Reveals Instantaneous Sleep Depth

    PubMed Central

    McKinney, Scott M.; Dang-Vu, Thien Thanh; Buxton, Orfeu M.; Solet, Jo M.; Ellenbogen, Jeffrey M.

    2011-01-01

    The neural correlates of the wake-sleep continuum remain incompletely understood, limiting the development of adaptive drug delivery systems for promoting sleep maintenance. The most useful measure for resolving early positions along this continuum is the alpha oscillation, an 8–13 Hz electroencephalographic rhythm prominent over posterior scalp locations. The brain activation signature of wakefulness, alpha expression discloses immediate levels of alertness and dissipates in concert with fading awareness as sleep begins. This brain activity pattern, however, is largely ignored once sleep begins. Here we show that the intensity of spectral power in the alpha band actually continues to disclose instantaneous responsiveness to noise—a measure of sleep depth—throughout a night of sleep. By systematically challenging sleep with realistic and varied acoustic disruption, we found that sleepers exhibited markedly greater sensitivity to sounds during moments of elevated alpha expression. This result demonstrates that alpha power is not a binary marker of the transition between sleep and wakefulness, but carries rich information about immediate sleep stability. Further, it shows that an empirical and ecologically relevant form of sleep depth is revealed in real-time by EEG spectral content in the alpha band, a measure that affords prediction on the order of minutes. This signal, which transcends the boundaries of classical sleep stages, could potentially be used for real-time feedback to novel, adaptive drug delivery systems for inducing sleep. PMID:21408616

  8. Cassava root membrane proteome reveals activities during storage root maturation.

    PubMed

    Naconsie, Maliwan; Lertpanyasampatha, Manassawe; Viboonjun, Unchera; Netrphan, Supatcharee; Kuwano, Masayoshi; Ogasawara, Naotake; Narangajavana, Jarunya

    2016-01-01

    Cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) is one of the most important crops of Thailand. Its storage roots are used as food, feed, starch production, and be the important source for biofuel and biodegradable plastic production. Despite the importance of cassava storage roots, little is known about the mechanisms involved in their formation. This present study has focused on comparison of the expression profiles of cassava root proteome at various developmental stages using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and LC-MS/MS. Based on an anatomical study using Toluidine Blue, the secondary growth was confirmed to be essential during the development of cassava storage root. To investigate biochemical processes occurring during storage root maturation, soluble and membrane proteins were isolated from storage roots harvested from 3-, 6-, 9-, and 12-month-old cassava plants. The proteins with differential expression pattern were analysed and identified to be associated with 8 functional groups: protein folding and degradation, energy, metabolism, secondary metabolism, stress response, transport facilitation, cytoskeleton, and unclassified function. The expression profiling of membrane proteins revealed the proteins involved in protein folding and degradation, energy, and cell structure were highly expressed during early stages of development. Integration of these data along with the information available in genome and transcriptome databases is critical to expand knowledge obtained solely from the field of proteomics. Possible role of identified proteins were discussed in relation with the activities during storage root maturation in cassava.

  9. Development and testing of an active platen for IC manufacturing

    SciTech Connect

    Redmond, J.; Barney, P.; Smith, T.; Darnold, J.

    1998-11-01

    The conflicting demands for finer features and increased production rates in integrated circuit manufacturing have emphasized the need for improved wafer positioning technology. In this paper we present operational test results from a magnetically levitated platen with structurally integrated piezoelectric acctuators. The strain based actuators provide active damping of the platen`s flexible body modes, enabling increased bandwidth on the mag-lev positioning system. Test results reveal a dramatic reduction in steady state positioning error and settling time through implementation of active vibration control.

  10. Geothermal reservoir characterization through active thermal testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Martin; Klepikova, Maria; Jalali, Mohammadreza; Fisch, Hansruedi; Loew, Simon; Amann, Florian

    2016-04-01

    Development and deployment of Enhanced Geothermal Systems (EGS) as renewable energy resources are part of the Swiss Energy Strategy 2050. To pioneer further EGS projects in Switzerland, a decameter-scale in-situ hydraulic stimulation and circulation (ISC) experiment has been launched at the Grimsel Test Site (GTS). The experiments are hosted in a low fracture density volume of the Grimsel granodiorite, similar to those expected at the potential enhanced geothermal system sites in the deep basement rocks of Northern Switzerland. One of the key goals of this multi-disciplinary experiment is to provide a pre- and post-stimulation characterization of the hydraulic and thermal properties of the stimulated fracture network with high resolution and to determine natural structures controlling the fluid flow and heat transport. Active thermal tests including thermal dilution tests and heat tracer tests allow for investigation of groundwater fluid flow and heat transport. Moreover, the spatial and temporal integrity of distributed temperature sensing (DTS) monitoring upgrades the potential and applicability of thermal tests in boreholes (e.g. Read et al., 2013). Here, we present active thermal test results and discuss the advantages and limitations of this method compared to classical approaches (hydraulic packer tests, solute tracer tests, flowing fluid electrical conductivity logging). The experimental tests were conducted in two boreholes intersected by a few low to moderately transmissive fault zones (fracture transmissivity of about 1E-9 m2/s - 1E-7 m2/s). Our preliminary results show that even in low-permeable environments active thermal testing may provide valuable insights into groundwater and heat transport pathways. Read T., O. Bour, V. Bense, T. Le Borgne, P. Goderniaux, M.V. Klepikova, R. Hochreutener, N. Lavenant, and V. Boschero (2013), Characterizing groundwater flow and heat transport in fractured rock using Fiber-Optic Distributed Temperature Sensing

  11. New signatures of underground nuclear tests revealed by satellite radar interferometry

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vincent, P.; Larsen, S.; Galloway, D.; Laczniak, R.J.; Walter, W.R.; Foxall, W.; Zucca, J.J.

    2003-01-01

    New observations of surface displacement caused by past underground nuclear tests at the Nevada Test Site (NTS) are presented using interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR). The InSAR data reveal both coseismic and postseismic subsidence signals that extend one kilometer or more across regardless of whether or not a surface crater was formed from each test. While surface craters and other coseismic surface effects (ground cracks, etc.) may be detectable using high resolution optical or other remote sensing techniques, these broader, more subtle subsidence signals (one to several centimeters distributed over an area 1-2 kilometers across) are not detectable using other methods [Barker et al., 1998]. A time series of interferograms reveal that the postseismic signals develop and persist for months to years after the tests and that different rates and styles of deformation occur depending on the geologic and hydrologic setting and conditions of the local test area.

  12. Characterisation of Drosophila CMP-sialic acid synthetase activity reveals unusual enzymatic properties

    PubMed Central

    Mertsalov, Ilya B.; Novikov, Boris N.; Scott, Hilary; Dangott, Lawrence; Panin, Vladislav M.

    2016-01-01

    CMP-sialic acid synthetase (CSAS) is a key enzyme of the sialylation pathway. CSAS produces the activated sugar donor, CMP-sialic acid, which serves as a substrate for sialyltransferases to modify glycan termini with sialic acid. Unlike other animal CMP-Sia synthetases that normally localize in the nucleus, Drosophila melanogaster CSAS (DmCSAS) localizes in the cell secretory compartment, predominantly in the Golgi, which suggests that this enzyme has properties distinct from those of its vertebrate counterparts. To test this hypothesis, we purified recombinant DmCSAS and characterised its activity in vitro. Our experiments revealed several unique features of this enzyme. DmCSAS displays specificity for N-acetylneuraminic acid as a substrate, shows preference for lower pH and can function with a broad range of metal cofactors. When tested at a pH corresponding to the Golgi compartment, the enzyme showed significant activity with several metal cations, including Zn2+, Fe2+, Co2+ and Mn2+, while the activity with Mg2+ was found to be low. Protein sequence analysis and site-specific mutagenesis identified an aspartic acid residue that is necessary for enzymatic activity and predicted to be involved in coordinating a metal cofactor. DmCSAS enzymatic activity was found to be essential in vivo for rescuing the phenotype of DmCSAS mutants. Finally, our experiments revealed a steep dependence of the enzymatic activity on temperature. Taken together, our results indicate that DmCSAS underwent evolutionary adaptation to pH and ionic environment different from that of counterpart synthetases in vertebrates. Our data also suggest that environmental temperatures can regulate Drosophila sialylation, thus modulating neural transmission. PMID:27114558

  13. Characterization of Drosophila CMP-sialic acid synthetase activity reveals unusual enzymatic properties.

    PubMed

    Mertsalov, Ilya B; Novikov, Boris N; Scott, Hilary; Dangott, Lawrence; Panin, Vladislav M

    2016-07-01

    CMP-sialic acid synthetase (CSAS) is a key enzyme of the sialylation pathway. CSAS produces the activated sugar donor, CMP-sialic acid, which serves as a substrate for sialyltransferases to modify glycan termini with sialic acid. Unlike other animal CSASs that normally localize in the nucleus, Drosophila melanogaster CSAS (DmCSAS) localizes in the cell secretory compartment, predominantly in the Golgi, which suggests that this enzyme has properties distinct from those of its vertebrate counterparts. To test this hypothesis, we purified recombinant DmCSAS and characterized its activity in vitro Our experiments revealed several unique features of this enzyme. DmCSAS displays specificity for N-acetylneuraminic acid as a substrate, shows preference for lower pH and can function with a broad range of metal cofactors. When tested at a pH corresponding to the Golgi compartment, the enzyme showed significant activity with several metal cations, including Zn(2+), Fe(2+), Co(2+) and Mn(2+), whereas the activity with Mg(2+) was found to be low. Protein sequence analysis and site-specific mutagenesis identified an aspartic acid residue that is necessary for enzymatic activity and predicted to be involved in co-ordinating a metal cofactor. DmCSAS enzymatic activity was found to be essential in vivo for rescuing the phenotype of DmCSAS mutants. Finally, our experiments revealed a steep dependence of the enzymatic activity on temperature. Taken together, our results indicate that DmCSAS underwent evolutionary adaptation to pH and ionic environment different from that of counterpart synthetases in vertebrates. Our data also suggest that environmental temperatures can regulate Drosophila sialylation, thus modulating neural transmission.

  14. Activation of AMP-activated protein kinase revealed by hydrogen/deuterium exchange Mass Spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Landgraf, Rachelle R.; Goswami, Devrishi; Rajamohan, Francis; Harris, Melissa S.; Calabrese, Matthew; Hoth, Lise R.; Magyar, Rachelle; Pascal, Bruce D.; Chalmers, Michael J.; Busby, Scott A.; Kurumbail, Ravi; Griffin, Patrick R.

    2013-01-01

    Summary AMP-Activated protein kinase (AMPK) monitors cellular energy, regulates genes involved in ATP synthesis and consumption, and is allosterically activated by nucleotides and synthetic ligands. Analysis of the intact enzyme by hydrogen/deuterium exchange mass spectrometry reveals conformational perturbations of AMPK in response to binding of nucleotides, cyclodextrin and a synthetic small molecule activator, A769662. Results from this analysis clearly show that binding of AMP leads to conformational changes primarily in the γ subunit of AMPK and subtle changes in the α and β subunits. In contrast, A769662 causes profound conformational changes in the glycogen binding module of the β subunit and in the kinase domain of the α subunit suggesting that the molecular binding site of latter resides between the α and β subunits. The distinct short and long-range perturbations induced upon binding of AMP and A769662 suggest fundamentally different molecular mechanisms for activation of AMPK by these two ligands. PMID:24076403

  15. Large-scale inhomogeneity in sapphire test masses revealed by Rayleigh scattering imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Zewu; Ju, Li; Eon, François; Gras, Slawomir; Zhao, Chunnong; Jacob, John; Blair, David G.

    2004-03-01

    Rayleigh scattering in test masses can introduce noise and reduce the sensitivity of laser interferometric gravitational wave detectors. In this paper, we present laser Rayleigh scattering imaging as a technique to investigate sapphire test masses. The system provides three-dimensional Rayleigh scattering mapping of entire test masses and quantitative evaluation of the Rayleigh scattering coefficient. Rayleigh scattering mapping of two sapphire samples reveals point defects as well as inhomogeneous structures in the samples. We present results showing significant non-uniform scattering within two 4.5 kg sapphire test masses manufactured by the heat exchanger method.

  16. Sequencing the extrachromosomal circular mobilome reveals retrotransposon activity in plants

    PubMed Central

    Llauro, Christel; Jobet, Edouard; Robakowska-Hyzorek, Dagmara; Lasserre, Eric; Ghesquière, Alain; Panaud, Olivier

    2017-01-01

    Retrotransposons are mobile genetic elements abundant in plant and animal genomes. While efficiently silenced by the epigenetic machinery, they can be reactivated upon stress or during development. Their level of transcription not reflecting their transposition ability, it is thus difficult to evaluate their contribution to the active mobilome. Here we applied a simple methodology based on the high throughput sequencing of extrachromosomal circular DNA (eccDNA) forms of active retrotransposons to characterize the repertoire of mobile retrotransposons in plants. This method successfully identified known active retrotransposons in both Arabidopsis and rice material where the epigenome is destabilized. When applying mobilome-seq to developmental stages in wild type rice, we identified PopRice as a highly active retrotransposon producing eccDNA forms in the wild type endosperm. The mobilome-seq strategy opens new routes for the characterization of a yet unexplored fraction of plant genomes. PMID:28212378

  17. Long-term home cage activity scans reveal lowered exploratory behaviour in symptomatic female Rett mice.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Lianne; Plano, Andrea; Cobb, Stuart; Riedel, Gernot

    2013-08-01

    Numerous experimental models have been developed to reiterate endophenotypes of Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder with a multitude of motor, cognitive and vegetative symptoms. Here, female Mecp2(Stop) mice [1] were characterised at mild symptomatic conditions in tests for anxiety (open field, elevated plus maze) and home cage observation systems for food intake, locomotor activity and circadian rhythms. Aged 8-9 months, Mecp2(Stop) mice presented with heightened body weight, lower overall activity in the open field, but no anxiety phenotype. Although home cage activity scans conducted in two different observation systems, PhenoMaster and PhenoTyper, confirmed normal circadian activity, they revealed severely compromised habituation to a novel environment in all parameters registered including those derived from a non-linear decay model such as initial exploration maximum, decay half-life of activity and span, as well as plateau. Furthermore, overall activity was significantly reduced in nocturnal periods due to reductions in both fast ambulatory movements, but also a slow lingering. In contrast, light-period activity profiles during which the amount of sleep was highest remained normal in Mecp2(Stop) mice. These data confirm the slow and progressive development of Rett-like symptoms in female Mecp2(Stop) mice resulting in a prominent reduction of overall locomotor activity, while circadian rhythms are maintained. Alterations in the time-course of habituation may indicate deficiencies in cognitive processing.

  18. Enceladus's activity as revealed by Cassini-Huygens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidt, Juergen

    2015-08-01

    The activity of Enceladus has been monitored by Cassini for nearly one decade after its discovery (see Science, 2006, 311, special issue). Thus, crucial properties of the vapor and dust plumes, heat output, surface properties, and the gravity field of the satellite are constrained in a fairly detailed manner. In this paper I review key observational facts and discuss implications for the vent geometries as well as interior structure and composition. Special emphasize I will give to data recorded by the Cassini Cosmic Dust Analyzer, and the conclusions drawn from it, concerning the number, size, and composition of grains ejected by the plumes associated with the south polar activity.

  19. Revealing Student Blogging Activities Using RSS Feeds and LMS Logs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Derntl, Michael

    2010-01-01

    Blogs are an easy-to-use, free alternative to classic means of computer-mediated communication. Moreover, they are authentically aligned with web activity patterns of today's students. The body of studies on integrating and implementing blogs in various educational settings has grown rapidly recently; however, it is often difficult to distill…

  20. Sleeping Beauty screen reveals Pparg activation in metastatic prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Ahmad, Imran; Mui, Ernest; Galbraith, Laura; Patel, Rachana; Tan, Ee Hong; Salji, Mark; Rust, Alistair G; Repiscak, Peter; Hedley, Ann; Markert, Elke; Loveridge, Carolyn; van der Weyden, Louise; Edwards, Joanne; Sansom, Owen J; Adams, David J; Leung, Hing Y

    2016-07-19

    Prostate cancer (CaP) is the most common adult male cancer in the developed world. The paucity of biomarkers to predict prostate tumor biology makes it important to identify key pathways that confer poor prognosis and guide potential targeted therapy. Using a murine forward mutagenesis screen in a Pten-null background, we identified peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (Pparg), encoding a ligand-activated transcription factor, as a promoter of metastatic CaP through activation of lipid signaling pathways, including up-regulation of lipid synthesis enzymes [fatty acid synthase (FASN), acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC), ATP citrate lyase (ACLY)]. Importantly, inhibition of PPARG suppressed tumor growth in vivo, with down-regulation of the lipid synthesis program. We show that elevated levels of PPARG strongly correlate with elevation of FASN in human CaP and that high levels of PPARG/FASN and PI3K/pAKT pathway activation confer a poor prognosis. These data suggest that CaP patients could be stratified in terms of PPARG/FASN and PTEN levels to identify patients with aggressive CaP who may respond favorably to PPARG/FASN inhibition.

  1. Sleeping Beauty screen reveals Pparg activation in metastatic prostate cancer

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, Imran; Mui, Ernest; Galbraith, Laura; Patel, Rachana; Tan, Ee Hong; Salji, Mark; Rust, Alistair G.; Repiscak, Peter; Hedley, Ann; Markert, Elke; Loveridge, Carolyn; van der Weyden, Louise; Edwards, Joanne; Sansom, Owen J.; Adams, David J.; Leung, Hing Y.

    2016-01-01

    Prostate cancer (CaP) is the most common adult male cancer in the developed world. The paucity of biomarkers to predict prostate tumor biology makes it important to identify key pathways that confer poor prognosis and guide potential targeted therapy. Using a murine forward mutagenesis screen in a Pten-null background, we identified peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (Pparg), encoding a ligand-activated transcription factor, as a promoter of metastatic CaP through activation of lipid signaling pathways, including up-regulation of lipid synthesis enzymes [fatty acid synthase (FASN), acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC), ATP citrate lyase (ACLY)]. Importantly, inhibition of PPARG suppressed tumor growth in vivo, with down-regulation of the lipid synthesis program. We show that elevated levels of PPARG strongly correlate with elevation of FASN in human CaP and that high levels of PPARG/FASN and PI3K/pAKT pathway activation confer a poor prognosis. These data suggest that CaP patients could be stratified in terms of PPARG/FASN and PTEN levels to identify patients with aggressive CaP who may respond favorably to PPARG/FASN inhibition. PMID:27357679

  2. Interaural asymmetries revealed by dichotic listening tests in normal and dyslexic children.

    PubMed

    Moncrieff, Deborah W; Musiek, Frank E

    2002-09-01

    Normal and dyslexic right-handed children were assessed with three dichotic listening tests, the Dichotic Digits test, the Competing Words subtest of the SCAN, and the Dichotic Consonant-Vowel test. Performance was measured as both number and percentage of correct responses in the right and left ears. Laterality was defined as a simple difference in percentage between the two ears. Differences across the tests were revealed for all children, with the greatest differences occurring for left-ear responses. Only one dichotic listening test, Competing Words from the SCAN, produced a consistent right-ear advantage across all of the children tested. Between groups of children, differences in performance and in laterality were demonstrated. Using a criterion of poorer than 76 percent correct for the left ear, the Competing Words subtest of the SCAN identified 7 of the 10 dyslexic children as abnormal, with no false alarms in the control group.

  3. Metaproteomic analysis reveals microbial metabolic activities in the deep ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Da-Zhi; Xie, Zhang-Xian; Zhang, Shu-Feng; Wang, Ming-Hua; Zhang, Hao; Kong, Ling-Fen; Lin, Lin

    2016-04-01

    The deep sea is the largest habitat on earth and holds many and varied microbial life forms. However, little is known about their metabolic activities in the deep ocean. Here, we characterized protein profiles of particulate (>0.22 μm) and dissolved (between 10 kDa and 0.22 μm) fractions collected from the deep South China Sea using a shotgun proteomic approach. SAR324, Alteromonadales and SAR11 were the most abundant groups, while Prasinophyte contributed most to eukaryotes and cyanophage to viruses. The dominant heterotrophic activity was evidenced by the abundant transporters (33%). Proteins participating in nitrification, methanogenesis, methyltrophy and CO2 fixation were detected. Notably, the predominance of unique cellular proteins in dissolved fraction suggested the presence of membrane structures. Moreover, the detection of translation proteins related to phytoplankton indicated that other process rather than sinking particles might be the downward export of living cells. Our study implied that novel extracellular activities and the interaction of deep water with its overlying water could be crucial to the microbial world of deep sea.

  4. Metatranscriptomics reveals overall active bacterial composition in caries lesions

    PubMed Central

    Simón-Soro, Aurea; Guillen-Navarro, Miriam; Mira, Alex

    2014-01-01

    Background Identifying the microbial species in caries lesions is instrumental to determine the etiology of dental caries. However, a significant proportion of bacteria in carious lesions have not been cultured, and the use of molecular methods has been limited to DNA-based approaches, which detect both active and inactive or dead microorganisms. Objective To identify the RNA-based, metabolically active bacterial composition of caries lesions at different stages of disease progression in order to provide a list of potential etiological agents of tooth decay. Design Non-cavitated enamel caries lesions (n=15) and dentin caries lesions samples (n=12) were collected from 13 individuals. RNA was extracted and cDNA was constructed, which was used to amplify the 16S rRNA gene. The resulting 780 bp polymerase chain reaction products were pyrosequenced using Titanium-plus chemistry, and the sequences obtained were used to determine the bacterial composition. Results A mean of 4,900 sequences of the 16S rRNA gene with an average read length of 661 bp was obtained per sample, giving a comprehensive view of the active bacterial communities in caries lesions. Estimates of bacterial diversity indicate that the microbiota of cavities is highly complex, each sample containing between 70 and 400 metabolically active species. The composition of these bacterial consortia varied among individuals and between caries lesions of the same individuals. In addition, enamel and dentin lesions had a different bacterial makeup. Lactobacilli were found almost exclusively in dentin cavities. Streptococci accounted for 40% of the total active community in enamel caries, and 20% in dentin caries. However, Streptococcus mutans represented only 0.02–0.73% of the total bacterial community. Conclusions The data indicate that the etiology of dental caries is tissue dependent and that the disease has a clear polymicrobial origin. The low proportion of mutans streptococci detected confirms that they

  5. Revealing phosphoproteins playing role in tobacco pollen activated in vitro.

    PubMed

    Fíla, Jan; Matros, Andrea; Radau, Sonja; Zahedi, René Peiman; Capková, Věra; Mock, Hans-Peter; Honys, David

    2012-11-01

    The transition between the quiescent mature and the metabolically active germinating pollen grain most probably involves changes in protein phosphorylation status, since phosphorylation has been implicated in the regulation of many cellular processes. Given that, only a minor proportion of cellular proteins are phosphorylated at any one time, and that phosphorylated and nonphosphorylated forms of many proteins can co-exist within a cell, the identification of phosphoproteins requires some prior enrichment from a crude protein extract. Here, we have used metal oxide/hydroxide affinity chromatography (MOAC) based on an aluminum hydroxide matrix for this purpose, and have generated a population of phosphoprotein candidates from both mature and in vitro activated tobacco pollen grains. Both electrophoretic and nonelectrophoretic methods, allied to MS, were applied to these extracts to identify a set of 139 phosphoprotein candidates. In vitro phosphorylation was also used to validate the spectrum of phosphoprotein candidates obtained by the MOAC phosphoprotein enrichment. Since only one phosphorylation site was detected by the above approach, titanium dioxide phosphopeptide enrichment of trypsinized mature pollen crude extract was performed as well. It resulted in a detection of additional 51 phosphorylation sites giving a total of 52 identified phosphosites in this set of 139 phosphoprotein candidates.

  6. Active Interaction Mapping Reveals the Hierarchical Organization of Autophagy.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Michael H; Farré, Jean-Claude; Mitra, Koyel; Yu, Michael Ku; Ono, Keiichiro; Demchak, Barry; Licon, Katherine; Flagg, Mitchell; Balakrishnan, Rama; Cherry, J Michael; Subramani, Suresh; Ideker, Trey

    2017-02-16

    We have developed a general progressive procedure, Active Interaction Mapping, to guide assembly of the hierarchy of functions encoding any biological system. Using this process, we assemble an ontology of functions comprising autophagy, a central recycling process implicated in numerous diseases. A first-generation model, built from existing gene networks in Saccharomyces, captures most known autophagy components in broad relation to vesicle transport, cell cycle, and stress response. Systematic analysis identifies synthetic-lethal interactions as most informative for further experiments; consequently, we saturate the model with 156,364 such measurements across autophagy-activating conditions. These targeted interactions provide more information about autophagy than all previous datasets, producing a second-generation ontology of 220 functions. Approximately half are previously unknown; we confirm roles for Gyp1 at the phagophore-assembly site, Atg24 in cargo engulfment, Atg26 in cytoplasm-to-vacuole targeting, and Ssd1, Did4, and others in selective and non-selective autophagy. The procedure and autophagy hierarchy are at http://atgo.ucsd.edu/.

  7. Single cell activity reveals direct electron transfer in methanotrophic consortia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGlynn, Shawn E.; Chadwick, Grayson L.; Kempes, Christopher P.; Orphan, Victoria J.

    2015-10-01

    Multicellular assemblages of microorganisms are ubiquitous in nature, and the proximity afforded by aggregation is thought to permit intercellular metabolic coupling that can accommodate otherwise unfavourable reactions. Consortia of methane-oxidizing archaea and sulphate-reducing bacteria are a well-known environmental example of microbial co-aggregation; however, the coupling mechanisms between these paired organisms is not well understood, despite the attention given them because of the global significance of anaerobic methane oxidation. Here we examined the influence of interspecies spatial positioning as it relates to biosynthetic activity within structurally diverse uncultured methane-oxidizing consortia by measuring stable isotope incorporation for individual archaeal and bacterial cells to constrain their potential metabolic interactions. In contrast to conventional models of syntrophy based on the passage of molecular intermediates, cellular activities were found to be independent of both species intermixing and distance between syntrophic partners within consortia. A generalized model of electric conductivity between co-associated archaea and bacteria best fit the empirical data. Combined with the detection of large multi-haem cytochromes in the genomes of methanotrophic archaea and the demonstration of redox-dependent staining of the matrix between cells in consortia, these results provide evidence for syntrophic coupling through direct electron transfer.

  8. Oscillatory Brain Activity Reveals Linguistic Prints in the Quantity Code

    PubMed Central

    Salillas, Elena; Barraza, Paulo; Carreiras, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Number representations change through education, although it is currently unclear whether and how language could impact the magnitude representation that we share with other species. The most prominent view is that language does not play any role in modulating the core numeric representation involved in the contrast of quantities. Nevertheless, possible cultural hints on the numerical magnitude representation are currently on discussion focus. In fact, the acquisition of number words provides linguistic input that the quantity system may not ignore. Bilingualism offers a window to the study of this question, especially in bilinguals where the two number wording systems imply also two different numerical systems, such as in Basque-Spanish bilinguals. The present study evidences linguistic prints in the core number representational system through the analysis of EEG oscillatory activity during a simple number comparison task. Gamma band synchronization appears when Basque-Spanish bilinguals compare pairs of Arabic numbers linked through the Basque base-20 wording system, but it does not if the pairs are related through the base-10 system. Crucially, this gamma activity, originated in a left fronto-parietal network, only appears in bilinguals who learned math in Basque and not in equivalent proficiency bilinguals who learned math in Spanish. Thus, this neural index reflected in gamma band synchrony appears to be triggered by early learning experience with the base-20 numerical associations in Basque number words. PMID:25875210

  9. Metatranscriptomic Analysis of Groundwater Reveals an Active Anammox Bacterial Population

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jewell, T. N. M.; Karaoz, U.; Thomas, B. C.; Banfield, J. F.; Brodie, E.; Williams, K. H.; Beller, H. R.

    2014-12-01

    Groundwater is a major natural resource, yet little is known about the contribution of microbial anaerobic ammonium oxidation (anammox) activity to subsurface nitrogen cycling. During anammox, energy is generated as ammonium is oxidized under anaerobic conditions to dinitrogen gas, using nitrite as the final electron acceptor. This process is a global sink for fixed nitrogen. Only a narrow range of monophyletic bacteria within the Planctomycetes carries out anammox, and the full extent of their metabolism, and subsequent impact on nitrogen cycling and microbial community structure, is still unknown. Here, we employ a metatranscriptomic analysis on enriched mRNA to identify the abundance and activity of a population of anammox bacteria within an aquifer at Rifle, CO. Planktonic biomass was collected over a two-month period after injection of up to 1.5 mM nitrate. Illumina-generated sequences were mapped to a phylogenetically binned Rifle metagenome database. We identified transcripts for genes with high protein sequence identities (81-98%) to those of anammox strain KSU-1 and to two of the five anammox bacteria genera, Brocadia and Kuenenia, suggesting an active, if not diverse, anammox population. Many of the most abundant anammox transcripts mapped to a single scaffold, indicative of a single dominant anammox species. Transcripts of the genes necessary for the anammox pathway were present, including an ammonium transporter (amtB), nitrite/formate transporter, nitrite reductase (nirK), and hydrazine oxidoreductase (hzoB). The form of nitrite reductase encoded by anammox is species-dependent, and we only identified nirK, with no evidence of anammox nirS. In addition to the anammox pathway we saw evidence of the anammox bacterial dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonium pathway (narH, putative nrfA, and nrfB), which provides an alternate means of generating substrates for anammox from nitrate, rather than relying on an external pool. Transcripts for hydroxylamine

  10. Activities on Facebook Reveal the Depressive State of Users

    PubMed Central

    Kwak, Jinah

    2013-01-01

    Background As online social media have become prominent, much effort has been spent on identifying users with depressive symptoms in order to aim at early diagnosis, treatment, and even prevention by using various online social media. In this paper, we focused on Facebook to discern any correlations between the platform’s features and users’ depressive symptoms. This work may be helpful in trying to reach and detect large numbers of depressed individuals more easily. Objective Our goal was to develop a Web application and identify depressive symptom–related features from users of Facebook, a popular social networking platform. Methods 55 Facebook users (male=40, female=15, mean age 24.43, SD 3.90) were recruited through advertisement fliers distributed to students in a large university in Korea. Using EmotionDiary, the Facebook application we developed, we evaluated depressive symptoms using the Center for Epidemiological Studies-Depression (CES-D) scale. We also provided tips and facts about depression to participants and measured their responses using EmotionDiary. To identify the Facebook features related to depression, correlation analyses were performed between CES-D and participants’ responses to tips and facts or Facebook social features. Last, we interviewed depressed participants (CES-D≥25) to assess their depressive symptoms by a psychiatrist. Results Facebook activities had predictive power in distinguishing depressed and nondepressed individuals. Participants’ response to tips and facts, which can be explained by the number of app tips viewed and app points, had a positive correlation (P=.04 for both cases), whereas the number of friends and location tags had a negative correlation with the CES-D scale (P=.08 and P=.045 respectively). Furthermore, in finding group differences in Facebook social activities, app tips viewed and app points resulted in significant differences (P=.01 and P=.03 respectively) between probably depressed and

  11. Neural activity reveals perceptual grouping in working memory.

    PubMed

    Rabbitt, Laura R; Roberts, Daniel M; McDonald, Craig G; Peterson, Matthew S

    2017-03-01

    There is extensive evidence that the contralateral delay activity (CDA), a scalp recorded event-related brain potential, provides a reliable index of the number of objects held in visual working memory. Here we present evidence that the CDA not only indexes visual object working memory, but also the number of locations held in spatial working memory. In addition, we demonstrate that the CDA can be predictably modulated by the type of encoding strategy employed. When individual locations were held in working memory, the pattern of CDA modulation mimicked previous findings for visual object working memory. Specifically, CDA amplitude increased monotonically until working memory capacity was reached. However, when participants were instructed to group individual locations to form a constellation, the CDA was prolonged and reached an asymptote at two locations. This result provides neural evidence for the formation of a unitary representation of multiple spatial locations.

  12. Basophil activation tests: time for a reconsideration.

    PubMed

    Uyttebroek, Astrid P; Sabato, Vito; Faber, Margaretha A; Cop, Nathalie; Bridts, Chris H; Lapeere, Hilde; De Clerck, Luc S; Ebo, Didier G

    2014-10-01

    Challenges in in vitro allergy diagnostics lie in the development of accessible and reliable assays allowing identification of all offending allergens and cross-reactive structures. Flow-assisted analysis and quantification of in vitro activated basophils serves as a diagnostic instrument with increasing applications developed over the years. From the earliest days it was clear that the test could constitute a diagnostic asset in basophil-mediated hypersensitivity. However, utility of the basophil activation test should be reassessed regarding difficulties with preparation, characterization and validation of allergen extracts; availability and the potential of more accessible diagnostics. Today, the added value mainly lies in diagnosis of immediate drug hypersensitivity. Other potential indications are monitoring venom-immunotherapy and follow-up of natural history of food allergies. However, results in these nondiagnostic applications are preliminary. We review the most relevant clinical applications of the basophil activation test. Some personal comments and views about perspectives and challenges about flow-assisted allergy diagnosis are made.

  13. Structure-activity relationships in carbohydrates revealed by their hydration.

    PubMed

    Maugeri, Laura; Busch, Sebastian; McLain, Sylvia E; Pardo, Luis Carlos; Bruni, Fabio; Ricci, Maria Antonietta

    2016-12-21

    One of the more intriguing aspects of carbohydrate chemistry is that despite having very similar molecular structures, sugars have very different properties. For instance, there is a sensible difference in sweet taste between glucose and trehalose, even though trehalose is a disaccharide that comprised two glucose units, suggesting a different ability of these two carbohydrates to bind to sweet receptors. Here we have looked at the hydration of specific sites and at the three-dimensional configuration of water molecules around three carbohydrates (glucose, cellobiose, and trehalose), combining neutron diffraction data with computer modelling. Results indicate that identical chemical groups can have radically different hydration patterns depending on their location on a given molecule. These differences can be linked with the specific activity of glucose, cellobiose, and trehalose as a sweet substance, as building block of cellulose fiber, and as a bioprotective agent, respectively. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled "Recent Advances in Bionanomaterials" Guest Editors: Dr. Marie-Louise Saboungi and Dr. Samuel D. Bader.

  14. Standardization activities for harmonization of test results.

    PubMed

    Dati, F; Brand, B

    2000-07-01

    In the last years the search for sensitive and specific markers of renal damage and/or renal function has conducted to the development of laboratory assays for measurement of urinary proteins such as albumin, beta(2)-microglobulin, alpha(1)-microglobulin, cystatin C, etc. Furthermore, there have been new applications of already known markers based on different, reformulated methods which often rely on more advanced technologies. It is evident that such developments are connected with analytical and interpretative problems for laboratory managers and clinicians. In this situation, it is essential that international societies develop comprehensive measures for the quality management of these assays and issue uniform and carefully elaborated guidelines to ensure optimal test utilization. International activities are also directed to the development of optimized and standardized methods as well as to the production and evaluation of appropriate reference materials and, finally, to the establishment of appropriate reference ranges and cut-off values for specific analytes. The main use of reference materials is in the transfer of their accurately assigned values to the calibrators of diagnostic companies for calibration of commercially available test systems. These international standardization activities and strategies will allow a harmonized approach to disease management using a more reliable laboratory testing based on quality and value.

  15. Revealing the nature of the active site on the carbon catalyst for C-H bond activation.

    PubMed

    Sun, XiaoYing; Li, Bo; Su, Dangsheng

    2014-09-28

    A reactivity descriptor for the C-H bond activation on the nanostructured carbon catalyst is proposed. Furthermore the calculations reveal that the single ketone group can be an active site in ODH reaction.

  16. Dynamic Docking Test System (DDTS) active table frequency response test results. [Apollo Soyuz Test Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gates, R. M.

    1974-01-01

    Results are presented of the frequency response test performed on the dynamic docking test system (DDTS) active table. Sinusoidal displacement commands were applied to the table and the dynamic response determined from measured actuator responses and accelerometers mounted to the table and one actuator.

  17. Active thermal testing of moisture in bricks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bison, Paolo G.; Bressan, Chiara; Grinzato, Ermanno G.; Marinetti, Sergio; Vavilov, Vladimir P.

    1993-04-01

    Measurement by active thermal testing of effusivity on porous moistened material is analyzed. Moistened bricks show that thermal properties of this porous solid depend on water content. Various solutions of the heat transfer problem are taken into account and approximations introduced to simplify the data reduction are discussed. Error analysis is also considered to justify the adoption of relative technique. Errors analysis speaks strongly in favor of reference method which allows to avoid the measurement of incident energy and optical properties of a specimen. This procedure allows to introduce a rather simple expression to extract moisture values from one-side thermal test. Diffusivity measurement trough flash method is proposed to determine the influence of moisture on the variation of thermal conductivity.

  18. Active testing search for point cloud matching.

    PubMed

    Pinheiro, Miguel Amável; Sznitman, Raphael; Serradell, Eduard; Kybic, Jan; Moreno-Noguer, Francesc; Fua, Pascal

    2013-01-01

    We present a general approach for solving the point-cloud matching problem for the case of mildly nonlinear transformations. Our method quickly finds a coarse approximation of the solution by exploring a reduced set of partial matches using an approach to which we refer to as Active Testing Search (ATS). We apply the method to registration of graph structures by branching point matching. It is based solely on the geometric position of the points, no additional information is used nor the knowledge of an initial alignment. In the second stage, we use dynamic programming to refine the solution. We tested our algorithm on angiography, retinal fundus, and neuronal data gathered using electron and light microscopy. We show that our method solves cases not solved by most approaches, and is faster than the remaining ones.

  19. Memory tests in subgroups of adult attention deficit hyperactivity disorder reveals simultaneous capacity deficit.

    PubMed

    Dige, Niels; Maahr, Eija; Backenroth-Ohsako, Gunnel

    2008-04-01

    Neuropsychological tests were used to evaluate different memory systems in the three subgroups of adult Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) (n=105) using analysis of means, factor analysis, and GLM analysis with covariance of gender, estimated IQ, and level of anxiety and depression measured with the Hospital anxiety and depression scale. A higher IQ level was found in the neuropsychological background tests for the predominantly inattentive subtype (ADD). In the memory tests the dual-task memory/simultaneous capacity tests "Brown-Peterson" Consonant Trigram and Benton Visual Retention Test (BVRT) were the most sensitive and were severely reduced in all three subgroups, but only the BVRT revealed a difference between the three ADHD groups. In learning and delayed recall measured with Rey Auditory Verbal learning test and modified Diagnosticum für Cerebralschädigung (mDCS), the Attention Deficit Disorder subgroup had the best learning and delayed capacity of the three groups. A good agreement was found between the interviewed DSM-IV-TR criteria, Conners CAARS S:S scale, and Wender WURS 25-item scales. Despite the difference in number of ADHD criteria for the three ADHD subgroups, the results in the neuropsychological memory tests indicate a severe reduction in all three subgroups of adult ADHD in simultaneous capacity.

  20. Haplotype test reveals departure from neutrality in a segment of the white gene of Drosophila melanogaster

    SciTech Connect

    Kirby, D.A.; Stephan, W.

    1995-12-01

    Restriction map studies previously revealed extensive linkage disequilibria in the transcriptional unit of the white locus in natural Drosophila melanogaster populations. To understand the causes of these disequilibria, we sequenced a 4722-bp region of the white gene from 15 lines of D. melanogaster and 1 line of Drosophila simulans. Statistical tests applied to the entire 4722-bp region do not reject neutrality. In contrast, a test for high-frequency haplotypes ({open_quotes}Haplotype test{close_quotes}) revealed an 834-bp segment, encompassing the 3{prime} end of intron 1 to the 3{prime} end of intron 2, in which the structure of variation deviates significantly from the predictions of a neutral equilibrium model. The variants in this 834-bp segment segregate as single haplotype blocks. We propose that these unusually large haplotype blocks are due to positive selection on polymorphisms within the white gene, including a replacement polymorphism, Arg{yields}Leu, within this segment. 45 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  1. Not all order memory is equal: Test demands reveal dissociations in memory for sequence information.

    PubMed

    Jonker, Tanya R; MacLeod, Colin M

    2017-02-01

    Remembering the order of a sequence of events is a fundamental feature of episodic memory. Indeed, a number of formal models represent temporal context as part of the memory system, and memory for order has been researched extensively. Yet, the nature of the code(s) underlying sequence memory is still relatively unknown. Across 4 experiments that manipulated encoding task, we found evidence for 3 dissociable facets of order memory. Experiment 1 introduced a test requiring a judgment of which of 2 alternatives had immediately followed a word during encoding. This measure revealed better retention of interitem associations following relational encoding (silent reading) than relatively item-specific encoding (judging referent size), a pattern consistent with that observed in previous research using order reconstruction tests. In sharp contrast, Experiment 2 demonstrated the reverse pattern: Memory for the studied order of 2 sequentially presented items was actually better following item-specific encoding than following relational encoding. Experiment 3 reproduced this dissociation in a single experiment using both tests. Experiment 4 extended these findings by further dissociating the roles of relational encoding and item strength in the 2 tests. Taken together, these results indicate that memory for event sequence is influenced by (a) interitem associations, (b) the emphasized directionality of an association, and (c) an item's strength independent of other items. Memory for order is more complicated than has been portrayed in theories of memory and its nuances should be carefully considered when designing tests and models of temporal and relational memory. (PsycINFO Database Record

  2. Nanoscale electrochemical patterning reveals the active sites for catechol oxidation at graphite surfaces.

    PubMed

    Patel, Anisha N; McKelvey, Kim; Unwin, Patrick R

    2012-12-19

    Graphite-based electrodes (graphite, graphene, and nanotubes) are used widely in electrochemistry, and there is a long-standing view that graphite step edges are needed to catalyze many reactions, with the basal surface considered to be inert. In the present work, this model was tested directly for the first time using scanning electrochemical cell microscopy reactive patterning and shown to be incorrect. For the electro-oxidation of dopamine as a model process, the reaction rate was measured at high spatial resolution across a surface of highly oriented pyrolytic graphite. Oxidation products left behind in a pattern defined by the scanned electrochemical cell served as surface-site markers, allowing the electrochemical activity to be correlated directly with the graphite structure on the nanoscale. This process produced tens of thousands of electrochemical measurements at different locations across the basal surface, unambiguously revealing it to be highly electrochemically active, with step edges providing no enhanced activity. This new model of graphite electrodes has significant implications for the design of carbon-based biosensors, and the results are additionally important for understanding electrochemical processes on related sp(2)-hybridized materials such as pristine graphene and nanotubes.

  3. A HUPO test sample study reveals common problems in mass spectrometry-based proteomics

    PubMed Central

    Bell, Alexander W.; Deutsch, Eric W.; Au, Catherine E.; Kearney, Robert E.; Beavis, Ron; Sechi, Salvatore; Nilsson, Tommy; Bergeron, John J.M.

    2009-01-01

    We carried out a test sample study to try to identify errors leading to irreproducibility, including incompleteness of peptide sampling, in LC-MS-based proteomics. We distributed a test sample consisting of an equimolar mix of 20 highly purified recombinant human proteins, to 27 laboratories for identification. Each protein contained one or more unique tryptic peptides of 1250 Da to also test for ion selection and sampling in the mass spectrometer. Of the 27 labs, initially only 7 labs reported all 20 proteins correctly, and only 1 lab reported all the tryptic peptides of 1250 Da. Nevertheless, a subsequent centralized analysis of the raw data revealed that all 20 proteins and most of the 1250 Da peptides had in fact been detected by all 27 labs. The centralized analysis allowed us to determine sources of problems encountered in the study, which include missed identifications (false negatives), environmental contamination, database matching, and curation of protein identifications. Improved search engines and databases are likely to increase the fidelity of mass spectrometry-based proteomics. PMID:19448641

  4. Some Trends in Radioactive Waste Form Behavior Revealed in Long-Term Field Tests

    SciTech Connect

    Ojovan, M. I.; Ojovan, N. V.; Startceva, I. V.; Barinov, A. S.

    2002-02-25

    Results from long-term field tests with borosilicate glass, cement and bitumen waste forms containing actual intermediate-level radioactive waste are summarized and discussed in the paper. Leaching behavior of the waste forms was evaluated by monitoring the contamination of contacting water. Measured leach rates of the three waste-form materials were in a narrow range in shallow subsurface repositories, but varied in a wide range at an open testing site owing to weathering of bitumen and cement materials. The repositories were opened after 12-year testing for visual examination, sampling and analysis. All retrieved waste forms were in good physical condition. The study has not revealed any negative changes in the waste glass. Some ageing processes were detected in cement and bitumen waste forms, which can positively (bitumen) or negatively (cement) affect physical and containment properties of these waste materials. It has been established that a significant proportion of the radioactive inventory in the bitumen waste form became associated with the bitumen phase. Phase separation of this radioactive bitumen has shown, than the asphaltene fraction is responsible for the major part of the radioactivity retained by the bitumen.

  5. Comparative Systems Analyses Reveal Molecular Signatures of Clinically tested Vaccine Adjuvants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olafsdottir, Thorunn A.; Lindqvist, Madelene; Nookaew, Intawat; Andersen, Peter; Maertzdorf, Jeroen; Persson, Josefine; Christensen, Dennis; Zhang, Yuan; Anderson, Jenna; Khoomrung, Sakda; Sen, Partho; Agger, Else Marie; Coler, Rhea; Carter, Darrick; Meinke, Andreas; Rappuoli, Rino; Kaufmann, Stefan H. E.; Reed, Steven G.; Harandi, Ali M.

    2016-12-01

    A better understanding of the mechanisms of action of human adjuvants could inform a rational development of next generation vaccines for human use. Here, we exploited a genome wide transcriptomics analysis combined with a systems biology approach to determine the molecular signatures induced by four clinically tested vaccine adjuvants, namely CAF01, IC31, GLA-SE and Alum in mice. We report signature molecules, pathways, gene modules and networks, which are shared by or otherwise exclusive to these clinical-grade adjuvants in whole blood and draining lymph nodes of mice. Intriguingly, co-expression analysis revealed blood gene modules highly enriched for molecules with documented roles in T follicular helper (TFH) and germinal center (GC) responses. We could show that all adjuvants enhanced, although with different magnitude and kinetics, TFH and GC B cell responses in draining lymph nodes. These results represent, to our knowledge, the first comparative systems analysis of clinically tested vaccine adjuvants that may provide new insights into the mechanisms of action of human adjuvants.

  6. Comparative Systems Analyses Reveal Molecular Signatures of Clinically tested Vaccine Adjuvants

    PubMed Central

    Olafsdottir, Thorunn A.; Lindqvist, Madelene; Nookaew, Intawat; Andersen, Peter; Maertzdorf, Jeroen; Persson, Josefine; Christensen, Dennis; Zhang, Yuan; Anderson, Jenna; Khoomrung, Sakda; Sen, Partho; Agger, Else Marie; Coler, Rhea; Carter, Darrick; Meinke, Andreas; Rappuoli, Rino; Kaufmann, Stefan H. E.; Reed, Steven G.; Harandi, Ali M.

    2016-01-01

    A better understanding of the mechanisms of action of human adjuvants could inform a rational development of next generation vaccines for human use. Here, we exploited a genome wide transcriptomics analysis combined with a systems biology approach to determine the molecular signatures induced by four clinically tested vaccine adjuvants, namely CAF01, IC31, GLA-SE and Alum in mice. We report signature molecules, pathways, gene modules and networks, which are shared by or otherwise exclusive to these clinical-grade adjuvants in whole blood and draining lymph nodes of mice. Intriguingly, co-expression analysis revealed blood gene modules highly enriched for molecules with documented roles in T follicular helper (TFH) and germinal center (GC) responses. We could show that all adjuvants enhanced, although with different magnitude and kinetics, TFH and GC B cell responses in draining lymph nodes. These results represent, to our knowledge, the first comparative systems analysis of clinically tested vaccine adjuvants that may provide new insights into the mechanisms of action of human adjuvants. PMID:27958370

  7. Proteomics analysis of dendritic cell activation by contact allergens reveals possible biomarkers regulated by Nrf2.

    PubMed

    Mussotter, Franz; Tomm, Janina Melanie; El Ali, Zeina; Pallardy, Marc; Kerdine-Römer, Saadia; Götz, Mario; von Bergen, Martin; Haase, Andrea; Luch, Andreas

    2016-12-15

    Allergic contact dermatitis is a widespread disease with high clinical relevance affecting approximately 20% of the general population. Typically, contact allergens are low molecular weight electrophilic compounds which can activate the Keap1/Nrf2 pathway. We performed a proteomics study to reveal possible biomarkers for dendritic cell (DC) activation by contact allergens and to further elucidate the role of Keap1/Nrf2 signaling in this process. We used bone marrow derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) of wild-type (nrf2(+/+)) and Nrf2 knockout (nrf2(-/-)) mice and studied their response against the model contact sensitizers 2,4-dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB), cinnamaldehyde (CA) and nickel(II) sulfate by 2-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE) in combination with electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS). Sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS, 100μM) served as irritant control. While treatment with nickel(II) sulfate and SDS had only little effects, CA and DNCB led to significant changes in protein expression. We found 18 and 30 protein spots up-regulated in wild-type cells treated with 50 and 100μM CA, respectively. For 5 and 10μM DNCB, 32 and 37 spots were up-regulated, respectively. Almost all of these proteins were not differentially expressed in nrf2(-/-) BMDCs, indicating an Nrf2-dependent regulation. Among them proteins were detected which are involved in oxidative stress and heat shock responses, as well as in signal transduction or basic cellular pathways. The applied approach allowed us to differentiate between Nrf2-dependent and Nrf2-independent cellular biomarkers differentially regulated upon allergen-induced DC activation. The data presented might contribute to the further development of suitable in vitro testing methods for chemical-mediated sensitization.

  8. Brain activity associated with omission of an aversive event reveals the effects of fear learning and generalization

    PubMed Central

    Dunsmoor, Joseph E.; LaBar, Kevin S.

    2012-01-01

    During fear learning, anticipation of an impending aversive stimulus increases defensive behaviors. Interestingly, omission of the aversive stimulus often produces another response around the time the event was expected. This omission response suggests that the subject detected a mismatch between what was predicted and what actually occurred, thereby providing an indirect measure of cognitive expectancy. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate whether omission-related brain activity reflects fear expectancy during learning and generalization of conditioned fear. During conditioning, a face expressing a moderate amount of fear (conditioned stimulus, CS+) signaled delivery of an aversive shock unconditioned stimulus (US), whereas the same face with a neutral expression was unreinforced. In a subsequent generalization test, subjects were presented with faces expressing more or less fear intensity than the CS+. Psychophysiological results revealed an increase in the skin conductance response (SCR) during learning when the US was omitted. Omission-related SCRs were also observed during the generalization test following the offset of high-but not low-intensity face expressions. Neuroimaging results revealed omission-related neural activity during learning in the anterior cingulate cortex, parietal cortex, insula, and striatum. These same regions also showed omission-related responses during the generalization test following highly expressive fearful faces. Finally, regression analysis on omission responses during the generalization test revealed correlations in offset-related SCRs and neural activity in the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and posterior parietal cortex. Thus, converging psychophysiological and neural activity upon omission of aversive stimulation provides a novel metric of US expectancy, even to generalized cues that had no prior history of reinforcement. PMID:22387662

  9. Integrative Proteomics and Phosphoproteomics Profiling Reveals Dynamic Signaling Networks and Bioenergetics Pathways Underlying T Cell Activation.

    PubMed

    Tan, Haiyan; Yang, Kai; Li, Yuxin; Shaw, Timothy I; Wang, Yanyan; Blanco, Daniel Bastardo; Wang, Xusheng; Cho, Ji-Hoon; Wang, Hong; Rankin, Sherri; Guy, Cliff; Peng, Junmin; Chi, Hongbo

    2017-03-21

    The molecular circuits by which antigens activate quiescent T cells remain poorly understood. We combined temporal profiling of the whole proteome and phosphoproteome via multiplexed isobaric labeling proteomics technology, computational pipelines for integrating multi-omics datasets, and functional perturbation to systemically reconstruct regulatory networks underlying T cell activation. T cell receptors activated the T cell proteome and phosphoproteome with discrete kinetics, marked by early dynamics of phosphorylation and delayed ribosome biogenesis and mitochondrial activation. Systems biology analyses identified multiple functional modules, active kinases, transcription factors and connectivity between them, and mitochondrial pathways including mitoribosomes and complex IV. Genetic perturbation revealed physiological roles for mitochondrial enzyme COX10-mediated oxidative phosphorylation in T cell quiescence exit. Our multi-layer proteomics profiling, integrative network analysis, and functional studies define landscapes of the T cell proteome and phosphoproteome and reveal signaling and bioenergetics pathways that mediate lymphocyte exit from quiescence.

  10. A novel test of the phenotype-linked fertility hypothesis reveals independent components of fertility.

    PubMed Central

    Pizzari, Tommaso; Jensen, Per; Cornwallis, Charles K.

    2004-01-01

    The phenotype-linked fertility hypothesis predicts that male sexual ornaments signal fertilizing efficiency and that the coevolution of male ornaments and female preference for such ornaments is driven by female pursuit of fertility benefits. In addition, directional testicular asymmetry frequently observed in birds has been suggested to reflect fertilizing efficiency and to covary with ornament expression. However, the idea of a phenotypic relationship between male ornaments and fertilizing efficiency is often tested in populations where environmental effects mask the underlying genetic associations between ornaments and fertilizing efficiency implied by this idea. Here, we adopt a novel design, which increases genetic diversity through the crossing of two divergent populations while controlling for environmental effects, to test: (i) the phenotypic relationship between male ornaments and both, gonadal (testicular mass) and gametic (sperm quality) components of fertilizing efficiency; and (ii) the extent to which these components are phenotypically integrated in the fowl, Gallus gallus. We show that consistent with theory, the testosterone-dependent expression of a male ornament, the comb, predicted testicular mass. However, despite their functional inter-dependence, testicular mass and sperm quality were not phenotypically integrated. Consistent with this result, males of one parental population invested more in testicular and comb mass, whereas males of the other parental population had higher sperm quality. We found no evidence that directional testicular asymmetry covaried with ornament expression. These results shed new light on the evolutionary relationship between male fertilizing efficiency and ornaments. Although testosterone-dependent ornaments may covary with testicular mass and thus reflect sperm production rate, the lack of phenotypic integration between gonadal and gametic traits reveals that the expression of an ornament is unlikely to reflect the

  11. Active nucleosome positioning beyond intrinsic biophysics is revealed by in vitro reconstitution.

    PubMed

    Korber, Philipp

    2012-04-01

    Genome-wide nucleosome maps revealed well-positioned nucleosomes as a major theme in eukaryotic genome organization. Promoter regions often show a conserved pattern with an NDR (nucleosome-depleted region) from which regular nucleosomal arrays emanate. Three mechanistic contributions to such NDR-array-organization and nucleosome positioning in general are discussed: DNA sequence, DNA binders and DNA-templated processes. Especially, intrinsic biophysics of DNA sequence preferences for nucleosome formation was prominently suggested to explain the majority of nucleosome positions ('genomic code for nucleosome positioning'). Nonetheless, non-histone factors that bind DNA with high or low specificity, such as transcription factors or remodelling enzymes respectively and processes such as replication, transcription and the so-called 'statistical positioning' may be involved too. Recently, these models were tested for yeast by genome-wide reconstitution. DNA sequence preferences as probed by SGD (salt gradient dialysis) reconstitution generated many NDRs, but only few individual nucleosomes, at their proper positions, and no arrays. Addition of a yeast extract and ATP led to dramatically more in vivo-like nucleosome positioning, including regular arrays for the first time. This improvement depended essentially on the extract and ATP but not on transcription or replication. Nucleosome occupancy and close spacing were maintained around promoters, even at lower histone density, arguing for active packing of nucleosomes against the 5' ends of genes rather than statistical positioning. A first extract fractionation identified a direct, specific, necessary, but not sufficient role for the RSC (remodels the structure of chromatin) remodelling enzyme. Collectively, nucleosome positioning in yeast is actively determined by factors beyond intrinsic biophysics, and in steady-state rather than at equilibrium.

  12. A Global Genomic Screening Strategy Reveals Diverse Activators of Constitutive Activated Receptor (CAR)

    EPA Science Inventory

    A comprehensive survey of conditions that activate CAR in the mouse liver has not been carried out but would be useful in understanding their impact on CAR-dependent liver tumor induction. A gene signature dependent on CAR activation was identified by comparing the transcript pr...

  13. Improved tests reveal that the accelarating moment release hypothesis is statistically insignificant

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hardebeck, J.L.; Felzer, K.R.; Michael, A.J.

    2008-01-01

    We test the hypothesis that accelerating moment release (AMR) is a precursor to large earthquakes, using data from California, Nevada, and Sumatra. Spurious cases of AMR can arise from data fitting because the time period, area, and sometimes magnitude range analyzed before each main shock are often optimized to produce the strongest AMR signal. Optimizing the search criteria can identify apparent AMR even if no robust signal exists. For both 1950-2006 California-Nevada M ??? 6.5 earthquakes and the 2004 M9.3 Sumatra earthquake, we can find two contradictory patterns in the pre-main shock earthquakes by data fitting: AMR and decelerating moment release. We compare the apparent AMR found in the real data to the apparent AMR found in four types of synthetic catalogs with no inherent AMR. When spatiotemporal clustering is included in the simulations, similar AMR signals are found by data fitting in both the real and synthetic data sets even though the synthetic data sets contain no real AMR. These tests demonstrate that apparent AMR may arise from a combination of data fitting and normal foreshock and aftershock activity. In principle, data-fitting artifacts could be avoided if the free parameters were determined from scaling relationships between the duration and spatial extent of the AMR pattern and the magnitude of the earthquake that follows it. However, we demonstrate that previously proposed scaling relationships are unstable, statistical artifacts caused by the use of a minimum magnitude for the earthquake catalog that scales with the main shock magnitude. Some recent AMR studies have used spatial regions based on hypothetical stress loading patterns, rather than circles, to select the data. We show that previous tests were biased and that unbiased tests do not find this change to the method to be an improvement. The use of declustered catalogs has also been proposed to eliminate the effect of clustering but we demonstrate that this does not increase the

  14. Active diffraction gratings: Development and tests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonora, S.; Frassetto, F.; Zanchetta, E.; Della Giustina, G.; Brusatin, G.; Poletto, L.

    2012-12-01

    We present the realization and characterization of an active spherical diffraction grating with variable radius of curvature to be used in grazing-incidence monochromators. The device consists of a bimorph deformable mirror on the top of which a diffraction grating with laminar profile is realized by UV lithography. The experimental results show that the active grating can optimize the beam focalization of visible wavelengths through its rotation and focus accommodation.

  15. Goldstone field test activities: Target search

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tarter, J.

    1986-01-01

    In March of this year prototype SETI equipment was installed at DSS13, the 26 meter research and development antenna at NASA's Goldstone complex of satellite tracking dishes. The SETI equipment will remain at this site at least through the end of the summer so that the hardware and software developed for signal detection and recognition can be fully tested in a dynamic observatory environment. The field tests are expected to help understand which strategies for observing and which signal recognition algorithms perform best in the presence of strong man-made interfering signals (RFI) and natural astronomical sources.

  16. An Overview of Follow-On Testing Activities of the A-3 Subscale Diffuser Test Project

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ryan, James E.

    2009-01-01

    An overview of NASA Stennis Space Center's (SSC) A-3 Subscale Diffuser Test (SDT) Project is presented. The original scope of the SDT Project, conducted from April 2007 to January 2008, collected data to support mitigation of risk associated with design and procurement activities of the A-3 Test Stand Project, an effort to construct a simulated altitude test facility at SSC in support of NASA's Constellation Program. Follow-on tests were conducted from May 2008 through August 2009, utilizing the SDT test setup as a testbed for additional risk mitigation activities. Included are descriptions of the Subscale Diffuser (SD) test article, the test facility configuration, and test approaches.

  17. Recovery Efficiency Test Project: Phase 1, Activity report

    SciTech Connect

    Overbey, W.K. Jr.; Wilkins, D.W.; Keltch, B.; Saradji, B.; Salamy, S.P.

    1988-04-01

    This report is the second volume of the Recovery Efficiency Test Phase I Report of Activities. Volume 1 covered selection, well planning, drilling, coring, logging and completion operations. This volume reports on well testing activities, reclamation activities on the drilling site and access roads, and the results of physical and mechanical properties tests on the oriented core material obtained from a horizontal section of the well. 3 refs., 21 figs., 10 tabs.

  18. Energy Landscape Topography Reveals the Underlying Link Between Binding Specificity and Activity of Enzymes.

    PubMed

    Chu, Wen-Ting; Wang, Jin

    2016-06-14

    Enzyme activity (often quantified by kcat/Km) is the main function of enzyme when it is active against the specific substrate. Higher or lower activities are highly desired for the design of novel enzyme and drug resistance. However, it is difficult to measure the activities of all possible variants and find the "hot-spot" within the limit of experimental time. In this study, we explore the underlying energy landscape of enzyme-substrate interactions and introduce the intrinsic specificity ratio (ISR), which reflects the landscape topography. By studying two concrete systems, we uncover the statistical correlation between the intrinsic specificity and the enzyme activity kcat/Km. This physics-based concept and method show that the energy landscape topography is valuable for understanding the relationship between enzyme specificity and activity. In addition, it can reveal the underlying mechanism of enzyme-substrate actions and has potential applications on enzyme design.

  19. Energy Landscape Topography Reveals the Underlying Link Between Binding Specificity and Activity of Enzymes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, Wen-Ting; Wang, Jin

    2016-06-01

    Enzyme activity (often quantified by kcat/Km) is the main function of enzyme when it is active against the specific substrate. Higher or lower activities are highly desired for the design of novel enzyme and drug resistance. However, it is difficult to measure the activities of all possible variants and find the “hot-spot” within the limit of experimental time. In this study, we explore the underlying energy landscape of enzyme-substrate interactions and introduce the intrinsic specificity ratio (ISR), which reflects the landscape topography. By studying two concrete systems, we uncover the statistical correlation between the intrinsic specificity and the enzyme activity kcat/Km. This physics-based concept and method show that the energy landscape topography is valuable for understanding the relationship between enzyme specificity and activity. In addition, it can reveal the underlying mechanism of enzyme-substrate actions and has potential applications on enzyme design.

  20. Energy Landscape Topography Reveals the Underlying Link Between Binding Specificity and Activity of Enzymes

    PubMed Central

    Chu, Wen-Ting; Wang, Jin

    2016-01-01

    Enzyme activity (often quantified by kcat/Km) is the main function of enzyme when it is active against the specific substrate. Higher or lower activities are highly desired for the design of novel enzyme and drug resistance. However, it is difficult to measure the activities of all possible variants and find the “hot-spot” within the limit of experimental time. In this study, we explore the underlying energy landscape of enzyme-substrate interactions and introduce the intrinsic specificity ratio (ISR), which reflects the landscape topography. By studying two concrete systems, we uncover the statistical correlation between the intrinsic specificity and the enzyme activity kcat/Km. This physics-based concept and method show that the energy landscape topography is valuable for understanding the relationship between enzyme specificity and activity. In addition, it can reveal the underlying mechanism of enzyme-substrate actions and has potential applications on enzyme design. PMID:27298067

  1. An insight into synthetic Schiff bases revealing antiproliferative activities in vitro.

    PubMed

    Sztanke, Krzysztof; Maziarka, Agata; Osinka, Anna; Sztanke, Małgorzata

    2013-07-01

    Schiff bases or azomethines are among the most important groups of biomolecules. These compounds have been found to reveal both remarkable biological activities and a variety of valuable practical applications. An interest in the exploration of novel series of synthetic Schiff bases has undoubtedly been growing due to their proven utility as attractive lead structures for the design of novel cytotoxic and cytostatic agents with a mechanism of action that sometimes differs from that of clinically authorized anticancer agents. Therefore, in the present paper we have focussed our attention on the collected synthetic simple Schiff bases of aldimine- and ketimine-types revealing anticancer activities in vitro, that have been described in the scientific literature during the last decade, and on structural variations whose affect the antiproliferative activity in sets of the designed molecules.

  2. Nuclear RNA-seq of single neurons reveals molecular signatures of activation.

    PubMed

    Lacar, Benjamin; Linker, Sara B; Jaeger, Baptiste N; Krishnaswami, Suguna; Barron, Jerika; Kelder, Martijn; Parylak, Sarah; Paquola, Apuã; Venepally, Pratap; Novotny, Mark; O'Connor, Carolyn; Fitzpatrick, Conor; Erwin, Jennifer; Hsu, Jonathan Y; Husband, David; McConnell, Michael J; Lasken, Roger; Gage, Fred H

    2016-04-19

    Single-cell sequencing methods have emerged as powerful tools for identification of heterogeneous cell types within defined brain regions. Application of single-cell techniques to study the transcriptome of activated neurons can offer insight into molecular dynamics associated with differential neuronal responses to a given experience. Through evaluation of common whole-cell and single-nuclei RNA-sequencing (snRNA-seq) methods, here we show that snRNA-seq faithfully recapitulates transcriptional patterns associated with experience-driven induction of activity, including immediate early genes (IEGs) such as Fos, Arc and Egr1. SnRNA-seq of mouse dentate granule cells reveals large-scale changes in the activated neuronal transcriptome after brief novel environment exposure, including induction of MAPK pathway genes. In addition, we observe a continuum of activation states, revealing a pseudotemporal pattern of activation from gene expression alone. In summary, snRNA-seq of activated neurons enables the examination of gene expression beyond IEGs, allowing for novel insights into neuronal activation patterns in vivo.

  3. Nuclear RNA-seq of single neurons reveals molecular signatures of activation

    PubMed Central

    Lacar, Benjamin; Linker, Sara B.; Jaeger, Baptiste N.; Krishnaswami, Suguna; Barron, Jerika; Kelder, Martijn; Parylak, Sarah; Paquola, Apuã; Venepally, Pratap; Novotny, Mark; O'Connor, Carolyn; Fitzpatrick, Conor; Erwin, Jennifer; Hsu, Jonathan Y.; Husband, David; McConnell, Michael J.; Lasken, Roger; Gage, Fred H.

    2016-01-01

    Single-cell sequencing methods have emerged as powerful tools for identification of heterogeneous cell types within defined brain regions. Application of single-cell techniques to study the transcriptome of activated neurons can offer insight into molecular dynamics associated with differential neuronal responses to a given experience. Through evaluation of common whole-cell and single-nuclei RNA-sequencing (snRNA-seq) methods, here we show that snRNA-seq faithfully recapitulates transcriptional patterns associated with experience-driven induction of activity, including immediate early genes (IEGs) such as Fos, Arc and Egr1. SnRNA-seq of mouse dentate granule cells reveals large-scale changes in the activated neuronal transcriptome after brief novel environment exposure, including induction of MAPK pathway genes. In addition, we observe a continuum of activation states, revealing a pseudotemporal pattern of activation from gene expression alone. In summary, snRNA-seq of activated neurons enables the examination of gene expression beyond IEGs, allowing for novel insights into neuronal activation patterns in vivo. PMID:27090946

  4. Metabolomics reveals a novel vitamin E metabolite and attenuated vitamin E metabolism upon PXR activation.

    PubMed

    Cho, Joo-Youn; Kang, Dong Wook; Ma, Xiaochao; Ahn, Sung-Hoon; Krausz, Kristopher W; Luecke, Hans; Idle, Jeffrey R; Gonzalez, Frank J

    2009-05-01

    Pregnane X receptor (PXR) is an important nuclear receptor xenosensor that regulates the expression of metabolic enzymes and transporters involved in the metabolism of xenobiotics and endobiotics. In this study, ultra-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) coupled with electrospray time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOFMS), revealed altered urinary metabolomes in both Pxr-null and wild-type mice treated with the mouse PXR activator pregnenolone 16alpha-carbonitrile (PCN). Multivariate data analysis revealed that PCN significantly attenuated the urinary vitamin E metabolite alpha-carboxyethyl hydroxychroman (CEHC) glucuronide together with a novel metabolite in wild-type but not Pxr-null mice. Deconjugation experiments with beta-glucuronidase and beta-glucosidase suggested that the novel urinary metabolite was gamma-CEHC beta-D-glucoside (Glc). The identity of gamma-CEHC Glc was confirmed by chemical synthesis and by comparing tandem mass fragmentation of the urinary metabolite with the authentic standard. The lower urinary CEHC was likely due to PXR-mediated repression of hepatic sterol carrier protein 2 involved in peroxisomal beta-oxidation of branched-chain fatty acids (BCFA). Using a combination of metabolomic analysis and a genetically modified mouse model, this study revealed that activation of PXR results in attenuated levels of the two vitamin E conjugates, and identification of a novel vitamin E metabolite, gamma-CEHC Glc. Activation of PXR results in attenuated levels of the two vitamin E conjugates that may be useful as biomarkers of PXR activation.

  5. Conformational study reveals amino acid residues essential for hemagglutinating and anti-proliferative activities of Clematis montana lectin.

    PubMed

    Lu, Bangmin; Zhang, Bin; Qi, Wei; Zhu, Yanan; Zhao, Yan; Zhou, Nan; Sun, Rong; Bao, Jinku; Wu, Chuanfang

    2014-11-01

    Clematis montana lectin (CML), a novel mannose-binding lectin purified from C. montana Buch.-Ham stem (Ranunculaceae), has been proved to have hemagglutinating activity in rabbit erythrocytes and apoptosis-inducing activity in tumor cells. However, the biochemical properties of CML have not revealed and its structural information still needs to be elucidated. In this study, it was found that CML possessed quite good thermostability and alkaline resistance, and its hemagglutinating activity was bivalent metal cation dependent. In addition, hemagglutination test and fluorescence spectroscopy proved that GuHCl, urea, and sodium dodecyl sulfate could change the conformation of CML and further caused the loss of hemagglutination activity. Moreover, the changes of fluorescence spectrum indicated that the tryptophan (Trp) microenvironment conversion might be related to the conformation and bioactivities of CML. In addition, it was also found that Trp residues, arginine (Arg) residues, and sulfhydryl were important for the hemagglutinating activity of CML, but only Trp was proved to be crucial for the CML conformation. Furthermore, the Trp, Arg, and sulfhydryl-modified CML exhibited 97.17%, 76.99%, and 49.64% loss of its anti-proliferative activity, respectively, which was consistent with the alterations of its hemagglutinating activity. Given these findings, Trp residues on the surface of CML are essential for the active center to form substrate-accessible conformation and suitable environment for carbohydrate binding.

  6. Functional Screening of Hydrolytic Activities Reveals an Extremely Thermostable Cellulase from a Deep-Sea Archaeon

    PubMed Central

    Leis, Benedikt; Heinze, Simon; Angelov, Angel; Pham, Vu Thuy Trang; Thürmer, Andrea; Jebbar, Mohamed; Golyshin, Peter N.; Streit, Wolfgang R.; Daniel, Rolf; Liebl, Wolfgang

    2015-01-01

    Extreme habitats serve as a source of enzymes that are active under extreme conditions and are candidates for industrial applications. In this work, six large-insert mixed genomic libraries were screened for hydrolase activities in a broad temperature range (8–70°C). Among a variety of hydrolytic activities, one fosmid clone, derived from a library of pooled isolates of hyperthermophilic archaea from deep sea vents, displayed hydrolytic activity on carboxymethyl cellulose substrate plates at 70°C but not at lower temperatures. Sequence analysis of the fosmid insert revealed a gene encoding a novel glycoside hydrolase family 12 (GHF12) endo-1,4-β-glucanase, termed Cel12E. The enzyme shares 45% sequence identity with a protein from the archaeon Thermococcus sp. AM4 and displays a unique multidomain architecture. Biochemical characterization of Cel12E revealed a remarkably thermostable protein, which appears to be of archaeal origin. The enzyme displayed maximum activity at 92°C and was active on a variety of linear 1,4-β-glucans like carboxymethyl cellulose, β-glucan, lichenan, and phosphoric acid swollen cellulose. The protein is able to bind to various insoluble β-glucans. Product pattern analysis indicated that Cel12E is an endo-cleaving β-glucanase. Cel12E expands the toolbox of hyperthermostable archaeal cellulases with biotechnological potential. PMID:26191525

  7. Structural Differences between Active Forms of Plasminogen Activator Inhibitor Type 1 Revealed by Conformationally Sensitive Ligands*

    PubMed Central

    Li, Shih-Hon; Gorlatova, Natalia V.; Lawrence, Daniel A.; Schwartz, Bradford S.

    2008-01-01

    Plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1) is a serine protease inhibitor (serpin) in which the reactive center loop (RCL) spontaneously inserts into a central β-sheet, β-sheet A, resulting in inactive inhibitor. Available x-ray crystallographic studies of PAI-1 in an active conformation relied on the use of stabilizing mutations. Recently it has become evident that these structural models do not adequately explain the behavior of wild-type PAI-1 (wtPAI-1) in solution. To probe the structure of native wtPAI-1, we used three conformationally sensitive ligands: the physiologic cofactor, vitronectin; a monoclonal antibody, 33B8, that binds preferentially to RCL-inserted forms of PAI-1; and RCL-mimicking peptides that insert into β-sheet A. From patterns of interaction with wtPAI-1 and the stable mutant, 14-1B, we propose a model of the native conformation of wtPAI-1 in which the bottom of the central sheet is closed, whereas the top of the β-sheet A is open to allow partial insertion of the RCL. Because the incorporation of RCL-mimicking peptides into wtPAI-1 is accelerated by vitronectin, we further propose that vitronectin alters the conformation of the RCL to allow increased accessibility to β-sheet A, yielding a structural hypothesis that is contradictory to the current structural model of PAI-1 in solution and its interaction with vitronectin. PMID:18436534

  8. Multichannel Detrended Fluctuation Analysis Reveals Synchronized Patterns of Spontaneous Spinal Activity in Anesthetized Cats

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez, Erika E.; Hernández-Lemus, Enrique; Itzá-Ortiz, Benjamín A.; Jiménez, Ismael; Rudomín, Pablo

    2011-01-01

    The analysis of the interaction and synchronization of relatively large ensembles of neurons is fundamental for the understanding of complex functions of the nervous system. It is known that the temporal synchronization of neural ensembles is involved in the generation of specific motor, sensory or cognitive processes. Also, the intersegmental coherence of spinal spontaneous activity may indicate the existence of synaptic neural pathways between different pairs of lumbar segments. In this study we present a multichannel version of the detrended fluctuation analysis method (mDFA) to analyze the correlation dynamics of spontaneous spinal activity (SSA) from time series analysis. This method together with the classical detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA) were used to find out whether the SSA recorded in one or several segments in the spinal cord of the anesthetized cat occurs either in a random or in an organized manner. Our results are consistent with a non-random organization of the sets of neurons involved in the generation of spontaneous cord dorsum potentials (CDPs) recorded either from one lumbar segment (DFA- mean = 1.040.09) or simultaneously from several lumbar segments (mDFA- mean = 1.010.06), where  = 0.5 indicates randomness while 0.5 indicates long-term correlations. To test the sensitivity of the mDFA method we also examined the effects of small spinal lesions aimed to partially interrupt connectivity between neighboring lumbosacral segments. We found that the synchronization and correlation between the CDPs recorded from the L5 and L6 segments in both sides of the spinal cord were reduced when a lesion comprising the left dorsal quadrant was performed between the segments L5 and L6 (mDFA- = 0.992 as compared to initial conditions mDFA- = 1.186). The synchronization and correlation were reduced even further after a similar additional right spinal lesion (mDFA- = 0.924). In contrast to the classical methods, such as correlation

  9. Multichannel detrended fluctuation analysis reveals synchronized patterns of spontaneous spinal activity in anesthetized cats.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez, Erika E; Hernández-Lemus, Enrique; Itzá-Ortiz, Benjamín A; Jiménez, Ismael; Rudomín, Pablo

    2011-01-01

    The analysis of the interaction and synchronization of relatively large ensembles of neurons is fundamental for the understanding of complex functions of the nervous system. It is known that the temporal synchronization of neural ensembles is involved in the generation of specific motor, sensory or cognitive processes. Also, the intersegmental coherence of spinal spontaneous activity may indicate the existence of synaptic neural pathways between different pairs of lumbar segments. In this study we present a multichannel version of the detrended fluctuation analysis method (mDFA) to analyze the correlation dynamics of spontaneous spinal activity (SSA) from time series analysis. This method together with the classical detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA) were used to find out whether the SSA recorded in one or several segments in the spinal cord of the anesthetized cat occurs either in a random or in an organized manner. Our results are consistent with a non-random organization of the sets of neurons involved in the generation of spontaneous cord dorsum potentials (CDPs) recorded either from one lumbar segment (DFA-α mean = 1.04[Formula: see text]0.09) or simultaneously from several lumbar segments (mDFA-α mean = 1.01[Formula: see text]0.06), where α = 0.5 indicates randomness while α = 0.5 indicates long-term correlations. To test the sensitivity of the mDFA method we also examined the effects of small spinal lesions aimed to partially interrupt connectivity between neighboring lumbosacral segments. We found that the synchronization and correlation between the CDPs recorded from the L5 and L6 segments in both sides of the spinal cord were reduced when a lesion comprising the left dorsal quadrant was performed between the segments L5 and L6 (mDFA-[Formula: see text] = 0.992 as compared to initial conditions mDFA-α = 1.186). The synchronization and correlation were reduced even further after a similar additional right spinal lesion (mDFA-α = 0.924). In contrast

  10. Severe Accident Test Station Activity Report

    SciTech Connect

    Pint, Bruce A.; Terrani, Kurt A.

    2015-06-01

    Enhancing safety margins in light water reactor (LWR) severe accidents is currently the focus of a number of international R&D programs. The current UO2/Zr-based alloy fuel system is particularly susceptible since the Zr-based cladding experiences rapid oxidation kinetics in steam at elevated temperatures. Therefore, alternative cladding materials that offer slower oxidation kinetics and a smaller enthalpy of oxidation can significantly reduce the rate of heat and hydrogen generation in the core during a coolant-limited severe accident. In the U.S. program, the high temperature steam oxidation performance of accident tolerant fuel (ATF) cladding solutions has been evaluated in the Severe Accident Test Station (SATS) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) since 2012. This report summarizes the capabilities of the SATS and provides an overview of the oxidation kinetics of several candidate cladding materials. A suggested baseline for evaluating ATF candidates is a two order of magnitude reduction in the steam oxidation resistance above 1000ºC compared to Zr-based alloys. The ATF candidates are categorized based on the protective external oxide or scale that forms during exposure to steam at high temperature: chromia, alumina, and silica. Comparisons are made to literature and SATS data for Zr-based alloys and other less-protective materials.

  11. Magnetoencephalography reveals early activation of V4 in grapheme-color synesthesia.

    PubMed

    Brang, D; Hubbard, E M; Coulson, S; Huang, M; Ramachandran, V S

    2010-10-15

    Grapheme-color synesthesia is a neurological phenomenon in which letters and numbers (graphemes) consistently evoke particular colors (e.g. A may be experienced as red). The cross-activation theory proposes that synesthesia arises as a result of cross-activation between posterior temporal grapheme areas (PTGA) and color processing area V4, while the disinhibited feedback theory proposes that synesthesia arises from disinhibition of pre-existing feedback connections. Here we used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to test whether V4 and PTGA activate nearly simultaneously, as predicted by the cross-activation theory, or whether V4 activation occurs only after the initial stages of grapheme processing, as predicted by the disinhibited feedback theory. Using our high-resolution MEG source imaging technique (VESTAL), PTGA and V4 regions of interest (ROIs) were separately defined, and activity in response to the presentation of achromatic graphemes was measured. Activation levels in PTGA did not significantly differ between synesthetes and controls (suggesting similar grapheme processing mechanisms), whereas activation in V4 was significantly greater in synesthetes. In synesthetes, PTGA activation exceeded baseline levels beginning 105-109ms, and V4 activation did so 5ms later, suggesting nearly simultaneous activation of these areas. Results are discussed in the context of an updated version of the cross-activation model, the cascaded cross-tuning model of grapheme-color synesthesia.

  12. Transcriptome using Illumina sequencing reveals the traits of spermatogenesis and developing testes in Eriocheir sinensis

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Hui

    2017-01-01

    Chinese mitten crab (Eriocheir sinensis) has the spermatozoa with typical aflagellate, decondensed chromatin, cup-shaped nuclei, and radial arms. However, the mechanism of spermatogenesis during which the specific spermatozoa are generated in this species is yet unclear. Here, the transcriptome of developing testis in E. sinensis was analyzed using the ways of RNA-seq and bioinformatics analysis to identify candidate genes potentially involved in development of testis and spermatogenesis. The Illumina HiSeq2500 sequencing of three replicons of samples produced a total of 145.19 M clean reads representing with a total of 21.34 Gb bases and 45.48% GC content. 56.30% clean reads were mapped to the draft genome of E. sinensis. The assembly of the transcriptome yielded contigs of 5691802 sequences and unigenes of 406527 sequences. Total 24246 and 40793 transcripts were annotated using Swissprot and Nr database, respectively. There were 48213 (70.31%) and 7858 (46.25%) transcripts with identity of more than 99 matching to mature testis unigenes in the databases of Nr and EST, respectively. The analytic results of KOG, GO and KEGG showed wide potential molecular functions of transcripts in the developing testes. KEGG analysis of unigenes yielded total 9422 predicted genes. Those predicted genes were involved in total 216 KEGG pathways related to the physiological activities of developing testis. 1975 predicted genes were involved in cellular and subcellular structural alteration of male germ cells. There were important roles of some pathways in the processes of morphological and structural biogenesis pertaining to testis development and spermatogenesis. Other 583 unigenes encoding the genetic and epigenetic factors also be found, which might contribute to the decondensation and stability of decondensed nuclei in the spermatozoa. These predicted events provide a view of the potential molecular mechanisms of development of testis and spermatogenesis in E. sinensis. PMID

  13. Designing and testing the activities of TAL effector nucleases.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yanni; Cradick, Thomas J; Bao, Gang

    2014-01-01

    Transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) have rapidly developed into a powerful tool for genome editing. To avoid labor-intensive and time-consuming experimental screening for active TALENs, a scoring system can help select optimal target sites. Here we describe a procedure to design active TALENs using a scoring system named Scoring Algorithm for Predicted TALEN Activity (SAPTA) and a method to test the activity of individual and pairs of TALENs.

  14. Chlorpheniramine-induced anaphylaxis diagnosed by basophil activation test.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyun-Seung; Song, Woo-Jung; Lee, Ji-Won; Cho, Young-Yoon; Park, Han-Ki; Kang, Min-Gyu; Cho, Sang-Heon; Sohn, Seong-Wook

    2015-07-01

    Chlorpheniramine is a widely prescribed H1-antihistamine for relieving urticaria or histamine-mediated allergic reactions. However, although rare, it may cause immediate hypersensitivity reactions. The diagnosis is usually made by provocation test, but its application is often limited due to comorbidities or potential risk of severe reactions. In those cases, skin tests and basophil activation tests can be considered as additional diagnostic tests for the drug allergy. Here, we report a 33-year-old female with underlying chronic urticaria, who recurrently developed anaphylaxis after chlorpheniramine administration. Intradermal test showed positive responses in the patient at 0.02 mg/mL of chlorpheniramine, but not in healthy controls. Basophil activation test showed significant up-regulation of CD63 and CD203c by chlorpheniramine. The present case reminds the rare but potential allergic risk of chlorpheniramine, and also suggests the potential utility of basophil activation test in making the diagnosis.

  15. A High-Throughput Screen Reveals New Small-Molecule Activators and Inhibitors of Pantothenate Kinases

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Pantothenate kinase (PanK) is a regulatory enzyme that controls coenzyme A (CoA) biosynthesis. The association of PanK with neurodegeneration and diabetes suggests that chemical modifiers of PanK activity may be useful therapeutics. We performed a high throughput screen of >520000 compounds from the St. Jude compound library and identified new potent PanK inhibitors and activators with chemically tractable scaffolds. The HTS identified PanK inhibitors exemplified by the detailed characterization of a tricyclic compound (7) and a preliminary SAR. Biophysical studies reveal that the PanK inhibitor acts by binding to the ATP–enzyme complex. PMID:25569308

  16. Crystal structure of an avian influenza polymerase PA[subscript N] reveals an endonuclease active site

    SciTech Connect

    Yuan, Puwei; Bartlam, Mark; Lou, Zhiyong; Chen, Shoudeng; Zhou, Jie; He, Xiaojing; Lv, Zongyang; Ge, Ruowen; Li, Xuemei; Deng, Tao; Fodor, Ervin; Rao, Zihe; Liu, Yingfang

    2009-11-10

    The heterotrimeric influenza virus polymerase, containing the PA, PB1 and PB2 proteins, catalyses viral RNA replication and transcription in the nucleus of infected cells. PB1 holds the polymerase active site and reportedly harbours endonuclease activity, whereas PB2 is responsible for cap binding. The PA amino terminus is understood to be the major functional part of the PA protein and has been implicated in several roles, including endonuclease and protease activities as well as viral RNA/complementary RNA promoter binding. Here we report the 2.2 angstrom (A) crystal structure of the N-terminal 197 residues of PA, termed PA(N), from an avian influenza H5N1 virus. The PA(N) structure has an alpha/beta architecture and reveals a bound magnesium ion coordinated by a motif similar to the (P)DX(N)(D/E)XK motif characteristic of many endonucleases. Structural comparisons and mutagenesis analysis of the motif identified in PA(N) provide further evidence that PA(N) holds an endonuclease active site. Furthermore, functional analysis with in vivo ribonucleoprotein reconstitution and direct in vitro endonuclease assays strongly suggest that PA(N) holds the endonuclease active site and has critical roles in endonuclease activity of the influenza virus polymerase, rather than PB1. The high conservation of this endonuclease active site among influenza strains indicates that PA(N) is an important target for the design of new anti-influenza therapeutics.

  17. Single molecule analysis reveals reversible and irreversible steps during spliceosome activation

    PubMed Central

    Hoskins, Aaron A; Rodgers, Margaret L; Friedman, Larry J; Gelles, Jeff; Moore, Melissa J

    2016-01-01

    The spliceosome is a complex machine composed of small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs) and accessory proteins that excises introns from pre-mRNAs. After assembly the spliceosome is activated for catalysis by rearrangement of subunits to form an active site. How this rearrangement is coordinated is not well-understood. During activation, U4 must be released to allow U6 conformational change, while Prp19 complex (NTC) recruitment is essential for stabilizing the active site. We used multi-wavelength colocalization single molecule spectroscopy to directly observe the key events in Saccharomyces cerevisiae spliceosome activation. Following binding of the U4/U6.U5 tri-snRNP, the spliceosome either reverses assembly by discarding tri-snRNP or proceeds to activation by irreversible U4 loss. The major pathway for NTC recruitment occurs after U4 release. ATP stimulates both the competing U4 release and tri-snRNP discard processes. The data reveal the activation mechanism and show that overall splicing efficiency may be maintained through repeated rounds of disassembly and tri-snRNP reassociation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14166.001 PMID:27244240

  18. What Do the California Standards Test Results Reveal about the Movement toward Eighth-Grade Algebra for All?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liang, Jian-Hua; Heckman, Paul E.; Abedi, Jamal

    2012-01-01

    In California, an increasing number of 8th graders have taken algebra courses since 2003. This study examines students' California Standards Test (CST) results in grades 7 through 11, aiming to reveal who took the CST for Algebra I in 8th grade and whether the increase has led to a rise in students' taking higher-level mathematics CSTs and an…

  19. A Pattern of Perseveration in Cocaine Addiction May Reveal Neurocognitive Processes Implicit in the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woicik, Patricia A.; Urban, Catherine; Alia-Klein, Nelly; Henry, Ashley; Maloney, Thomas; Telang, Frank; Wang, Gene-Jack; Volkow, Nora D.; Goldstein, Rita Z.

    2011-01-01

    The ability to adapt behavior in a changing environment is necessary for humans to achieve their goals and can be measured in the lab with tests of rule-based switching. Disease models, such as cocaine addiction, have revealed that alterations in dopamine interfere with adaptive set switching, culminating in perseveration. We explore perseverative…

  20. Chimeric CD46/DAF molecules reveal a cryptic functional role for SCR1 of DAF in regulating complement activation.

    PubMed

    Christiansen, D; Loveland, B; Kyriakou, P; Lanteri, M; Rubinstein, E; Gerlier, D

    2000-01-01

    Chimeric proteins using membrane cofactor (CD46) and decay accelerating factor (DAF or CD55) were generated to further investigate the functional domains involved in the regulation of human serum complement. Following activation of the classical pathway, the isolated substitution of CD46 SCR III (x3DAF) exhibited a modest regulatory activity comparable to that of CD46. The isolated substitution of CD46 SCR IV (x4DAF), and the combined CD46 SCR III+IV substitutions (x3/4DAF) were essentially as efficient as DAF. No regulation of C3b deposition was observed with the combined CD46 SCR I+II substitutions (x1/2DAF). When tested after activation of the alternative pathway, both the x3DAF and x3/4DAF chimeras failed to regulate C3b deposition, while the x4DAF chimera still displayed some activity. In contrast to that observed following classical pathway activation, the x1/2DAF chimera exhibited a similar efficiency to wild type CD46 and DAF in controlling C3b deposition. Using SCR specific antibodies, the regulatory activity of the x1/2DAF chimera against the alternative pathway was mapped to the first three distal SCR (i.e. DAF 1, DAF 2 and CD46 III). These data demonstrate that several combinations of SCR domains from two related complement regulators can result in functional molecules, and reveal a novel and cryptic functional role for DAF SCR1.

  1. Mutational activation of ErbB2 reveals a new protein kinase autoinhibition mechanism.

    PubMed

    Fan, Ying-Xin; Wong, Lily; Ding, Jinhui; Spiridonov, Nikolay A; Johnson, Richard C; Johnson, Gibbes R

    2008-01-18

    Autoinhibition plays a key role in the control of protein kinase activity. ErbB2 is a unique receptor-tyrosine kinase that does not bind ligand but possesses an extracellular domain poised to engage other ErbBs. Little is known about the molecular mechanism for ErbB2 catalytic regulation. Here we show that ErbB2 kinase is strongly autoinhibited, and a loop connecting the alphaC helix and beta4 sheet within the kinase domain plays a major role in the control of kinase activity. Mutations of two Gly residues at positions 776 and 778 in this loop dramatically increase ErbB2 catalytic activity. Kinetic analysis demonstrates that mutational activation is due to approximately 10- and approximately 7-fold increases in ATP binding affinity and turnover number, respectively. Expression of the activated ErbB2 mutants in cells resulted in elevated ligand-independent ErbB2 autophosphorylation, ErbB3 phosphorylation, and stimulation of mitogen-activated protein kinase. Molecular modeling suggests that the ErbB2 kinase domain is stabilized in an inactive state via a hydrophobic interaction between the alphaC-beta4 and activation loops. Importantly, many ErbB2 human cancer mutations have been identified in the alphaC-beta4 loop, including the activating G776S mutation studied here. Our findings reveal a new kinase regulatory mechanism in which the alphaC-beta4 loop functions as an intramolecular switch that controls ErbB2 activity and suggests that loss of alphaC-beta4 loop-mediated autoinhibition is involved in oncogenic activation of ErbB2.

  2. Whole-brain activity maps reveal stereotyped, distributed networks for visuomotor behavior.

    PubMed

    Portugues, Ruben; Feierstein, Claudia E; Engert, Florian; Orger, Michael B

    2014-03-19

    Most behaviors, even simple innate reflexes, are mediated by circuits of neurons spanning areas throughout the brain. However, in most cases, the distribution and dynamics of firing patterns of these neurons during behavior are not known. We imaged activity, with cellular resolution, throughout the whole brains of zebrafish performing the optokinetic response. We found a sparse, broadly distributed network that has an elaborate but ordered pattern, with a bilaterally symmetrical organization. Activity patterns fell into distinct clusters reflecting sensory and motor processing. By correlating neuronal responses with an array of sensory and motor variables, we find that the network can be clearly divided into distinct functional modules. Comparing aligned data from multiple fish, we find that the spatiotemporal activity dynamics and functional organization are highly stereotyped across individuals. These experiments systematically reveal the functional architecture of neural circuits underlying a sensorimotor behavior in a vertebrate brain.

  3. Latent luciferase activity in the fruit fly revealed by a synthetic luciferin

    PubMed Central

    Mofford, David M.; Reddy, Gadarla Randheer; Miller, Stephen C.

    2014-01-01

    Beetle luciferases are thought to have evolved from fatty acyl-CoA synthetases present in all insects. Both classes of enzymes activate fatty acids with ATP to form acyl-adenylate intermediates, but only luciferases can activate and oxidize d-luciferin to emit light. Here we show that the Drosophila fatty acyl-CoA synthetase CG6178, which cannot use d-luciferin as a substrate, is able to catalyze light emission from the synthetic luciferin analog CycLuc2. Bioluminescence can be detected from the purified protein, live Drosophila Schneider 2 cells, and from mammalian cells transfected with CG6178. Thus, the nonluminescent fruit fly possesses an inherent capacity for bioluminescence that is only revealed upon treatment with a xenobiotic molecule. This result expands the scope of bioluminescence and demonstrates that the introduction of a new substrate can unmask latent enzymatic activity that differs significantly from an enzyme’s normal function without requiring mutation. PMID:24616520

  4. Whole-brain activity maps reveal stereotyped, distributed networks for visuomotor behavior

    PubMed Central

    Portugues, Ruben; Feierstein, Claudia E.; Engert, Florian; Orger, Michael B.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Most behaviors, even simple innate reflexes, are mediated by circuits of neurons spanning areas throughout the brain. However, in most cases, the distribution and dynamics of firing patterns of these neurons during behavior are not known. We imaged activity, with cellular resolution, throughout the whole brains of zebrafish performing the optokinetic response. We found a sparse, broadly distributed network that has an elaborate, but ordered, pattern, with a bilaterally symmetrical organization. Activity patterns fell into distinct clusters reflecting sensory and motor processing. By correlating neuronal responses with an array of sensory and motor variables, we find that the network can be clearly divided into distinct functional modules. Comparing aligned data from multiple fish, we find that the spatiotemporal activity dynamics and functional organization are highly stereotyped across individuals. These experiments reveal, for the first time in a vertebrate, the comprehensive functional architecture of the neural circuits underlying a sensorimotor behavior. PMID:24656252

  5. Quantitative and Temporal Requirements Revealed for Zap-70 Catalytic Activity During T Cell Development

    PubMed Central

    Au-Yeung, Byron B.; Melichar, Heather J.; Ross, Jenny O.; Cheng, Debra A.; Zikherman, Julie; Shokat, Kevan M.; Robey, Ellen A.; Weiss, Arthur

    2014-01-01

    The catalytic activity of Zap-70 is crucial for T cell receptor (TCR) signaling, but the quantitative and temporal requirements for its function in thymocyte development are not known. Using a chemical-genetic system to selectively and reversibly inhibit Zap-70 catalytic activity in a model of synchronized thymic selection, we showed that CD4+CD8+ thymocytes integrate multiple, transient, Zap-70-dependent signals over more than 36 h to reach a cumulative threshold for positive selection, whereas one hour of signaling was sufficient for negative selection. Titration of Zap-70 activity resulted in graded reductions in positive and negative selection but did not decrease the cumulative TCR signals integrated by positively selected OT-I cells, revealing heterogeneity, even among CD4+CD8+ thymocytes expressing identical TCRs undergoing positive selection. PMID:24908390

  6. Integrative analysis of breast cancer reveals prognostic haematopoietic activity and patient-specific immune response profiles

    PubMed Central

    Varn, Frederick S.; Andrews, Erik H.; Mullins, David W.; Cheng, Chao

    2016-01-01

    Transcriptional programmes active in haematopoietic cells enable a variety of functions including dedifferentiation, innate immunity and adaptive immunity. Understanding how these programmes function in the context of cancer can provide valuable insights into host immune response, cancer severity and potential therapy response. Here we present a method that uses the transcriptomes of over 200 murine haematopoietic cells, to infer the lineage-specific haematopoietic activity present in human breast tumours. Correlating this activity with patient survival and tumour purity reveals that the transcriptional programmes of many cell types influence patient prognosis and are found in environments of high lymphocytic infiltration. Collectively, these results allow for a detailed and personalized assessment of the patient immune response to a tumour. When combined with routinely collected patient biopsy genomic data, this method can enable a richer understanding of the complex interplay between the host immune system and cancer. PMID:26725977

  7. NASA Stennis Space Center Test Technology Branch Activities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Solano, Wanda M.

    2000-01-01

    This paper provides a short history of NASA Stennis Space Center's Test Technology Laboratory and briefly describes the variety of engine test technology activities and developmental project initiatives. Theoretical rocket exhaust plume modeling, acoustic monitoring and analysis, hand held fire imaging, heat flux radiometry, thermal imaging and exhaust plume spectroscopy are all examples of current and past test activities that are briefly described. In addition, recent efforts and visions focused on accomodating second, third, and fourth generation flight vehicle engine test requirements are discussed.

  8. Crystal Structure of Escherichia coli Diaminopropionate Ammonia-lyase Reveals Mechanism of Enzyme Activation and Catalysis*

    PubMed Central

    Bisht, Shveta; Rajaram, Venkatesan; Bharath, Sakshibeedu R.; Kalyani, Josyula Nitya; Khan, Farida; Rao, Appaji N.; Savithri, Handanahal S.; Murthy, Mathur R. N.

    2012-01-01

    Pyridoxal 5′-phosphate (PLP)-dependent enzymes utilize the unique chemistry of a pyridine ring to carry out diverse reactions involving amino acids. Diaminopropionate (DAP) ammonia-lyase (DAPAL) is a prokaryotic PLP-dependent enzyme that catalyzes the degradation of d- and l-forms of DAP to pyruvate and ammonia. Here, we report the first crystal structure of DAPAL from Escherichia coli (EcDAPAL) in tetragonal and monoclinic forms at 2.0 and 2.2 Å resolutions, respectively. Structures of EcDAPAL soaked with substrates were also determined. EcDAPAL has a typical fold type II PLP-dependent enzyme topology consisting of a large and a small domain with the active site at the interface of the two domains. The enzyme is a homodimer with a unique biological interface not observed earlier. Structure of the enzyme in the tetragonal form had PLP bound at the active site, whereas the monoclinic structure was in the apo-form. Analysis of the apo and holo structures revealed that the region around the active site undergoes transition from a disordered to ordered state and assumes a conformation suitable for catalysis only upon PLP binding. A novel disulfide was found to occur near a channel that is likely to regulate entry of ligands to the active site. EcDAPAL soaked with dl-DAP revealed density at the active site appropriate for the reaction intermediate aminoacrylate, which is consistent with the observation that EcDAPAL has low activity under crystallization conditions. Based on the analysis of the structure and results of site-directed mutagenesis, a two-base mechanism of catalysis involving Asp120 and Lys77 is suggested. PMID:22505717

  9. Crystal structure of Escherichia coli diaminopropionate ammonia-lyase reveals mechanism of enzyme activation and catalysis.

    PubMed

    Bisht, Shveta; Rajaram, Venkatesan; Bharath, Sakshibeedu R; Kalyani, Josyula Nitya; Khan, Farida; Rao, Appaji N; Savithri, Handanahal S; Murthy, Mathur R N

    2012-06-08

    Pyridoxal 5'-phosphate (PLP)-dependent enzymes utilize the unique chemistry of a pyridine ring to carry out diverse reactions involving amino acids. Diaminopropionate (DAP) ammonia-lyase (DAPAL) is a prokaryotic PLP-dependent enzyme that catalyzes the degradation of d- and l-forms of DAP to pyruvate and ammonia. Here, we report the first crystal structure of DAPAL from Escherichia coli (EcDAPAL) in tetragonal and monoclinic forms at 2.0 and 2.2 Å resolutions, respectively. Structures of EcDAPAL soaked with substrates were also determined. EcDAPAL has a typical fold type II PLP-dependent enzyme topology consisting of a large and a small domain with the active site at the interface of the two domains. The enzyme is a homodimer with a unique biological interface not observed earlier. Structure of the enzyme in the tetragonal form had PLP bound at the active site, whereas the monoclinic structure was in the apo-form. Analysis of the apo and holo structures revealed that the region around the active site undergoes transition from a disordered to ordered state and assumes a conformation suitable for catalysis only upon PLP binding. A novel disulfide was found to occur near a channel that is likely to regulate entry of ligands to the active site. EcDAPAL soaked with dl-DAP revealed density at the active site appropriate for the reaction intermediate aminoacrylate, which is consistent with the observation that EcDAPAL has low activity under crystallization conditions. Based on the analysis of the structure and results of site-directed mutagenesis, a two-base mechanism of catalysis involving Asp(120) and Lys(77) is suggested.

  10. A Test of Learned Industriousness in the Physical Activity Domain

    PubMed Central

    Bustamante, Eduardo E.; Davis, Catherine L.; Marquez, David X.

    2015-01-01

    Background The Theory of Learned Industriousness states that durable individual differences in industriousness are due in part to differences in the extent to which individuals were rewarded for high effort at an earlier time. Individuals rewarded for high effort during training are thought to generalize greater persistence to subsequent tasks than those rewarded for low effort. This study tested whether rewarded physical and/or mental effort at different intensities generalized to greater persistence at a subsequent mental task. Methods 80 inactive 18–25 year-olds were randomized into four groups: Low Mental Effort, High Mental Effort, Low Physical Effort, and High Physical Effort. Each completed group-specific effort training and a mental persistence task at baseline and posttest. Results Factorial analysis of covariance revealed a significant domain x effort interaction on persistence (F[1,75]=4.93, p=.029). High Mental Effort and Low Mental Effort groups demonstrated similar gains in persistence (d=-0.08, p>.05) and points earned (d=0.11, p>.05) following effort training. High Physical Effort and Low Physical Effort diverged on persistence (d=-0.49, p=.004) but not points earned (d =-0.12, p>.05). Conclusions Findings suggest either that training and test stimuli were too dissimilar to cue effects of associative learning in physical effort groups, or that effects were present but overpowered by the affective and neurocognitive consequences of an acute bout of intense aerobic physical activity. Findings do not support the Theory of Learned Industriousness nor generalization of effort across physical and mental domains. PMID:26052372

  11. Interspecies activity correlations reveal functional correspondence between monkey and human brain areas.

    PubMed

    Mantini, Dante; Hasson, Uri; Betti, Viviana; Perrucci, Mauro G; Romani, Gian Luca; Corbetta, Maurizio; Orban, Guy A; Vanduffel, Wim

    2012-02-05

    Evolution-driven functional changes in the primate brain are typically assessed by aligning monkey and human activation maps using cortical surface expansion models. These models use putative homologous areas as registration landmarks, assuming they are functionally correspondent. For cases in which functional changes have occurred in an area, this assumption prohibits to reveal whether other areas may have assumed lost functions. Here we describe a method to examine functional correspondences across species. Without making spatial assumptions, we assessed similarities in sensory-driven functional magnetic resonance imaging responses between monkey (Macaca mulatta) and human brain areas by temporal correlation. Using natural vision data, we revealed regions for which functional processing has shifted to topologically divergent locations during evolution. We conclude that substantial evolution-driven functional reorganizations have occurred, not always consistent with cortical expansion processes. This framework for evaluating changes in functional architecture is crucial to building more accurate evolutionary models.

  12. Rational engineering of L-asparaginase reveals importance of dual activity for cancer cell toxicity.

    PubMed

    Offman, Marc N; Krol, Marcin; Patel, Naina; Krishnan, Shekhar; Liu, JiZhong; Saha, Vaskar; Bates, Paul A

    2011-02-03

    Using proteins in a therapeutic context often requires engineering to modify functionality and enhance efficacy. We have previously reported that the therapeutic antileukemic protein macromolecule Escherichia coli L-asparaginase is degraded by leukemic lysosomal cysteine proteases. In the present study, we successfully engineered L-asparaginase to resist proteolytic cleavage and at the same time improve activity. We employed a novel combination of mutant sampling using a genetic algorithm in tandem with flexibility studies using molecular dynamics to investigate the impact of lid-loop and mutations on drug activity. Applying these methods, we successfully predicted the more active L-asparaginase mutants N24T and N24A. For the latter, a unique hydrogen bond network contributes to higher activity. Furthermore, interface mutations controlling secondary glutaminase activity demonstrated the importance of this enzymatic activity for drug cytotoxicity. All selected mutants were expressed, purified, and tested for activity and for their ability to form the active tetrameric form. By introducing the N24A and N24A R195S mutations to the drug L-asparaginase, we are a step closer to individualized drug design.

  13. Energy-efficiency testing activities of the Mobile Energy Laboratory

    SciTech Connect

    Parker, G.B.

    1991-01-01

    This report summarizes energy-efficiency testing activities during the first and second quarters of fiscal year 1990 applying the Mobile Energy Laboratory (MEL) testing capabilities. Four MELs, developed by the US Department of Energy (DOE) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP), are administered by Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) for energy testing and program support functions at federal facilities. The using agencies principally fund MEL applications, while DOE/FEMP funds program administration and capability enhancement activities. This report fulfills the requirements established in the MEL Use Plan (PNL-6861) for semiannual reporting on energy-efficiency testing activities using the MEL capabilities. The MEL Use Committee, formally established in 1989, developed the MEL Use Plan and meets semiannually to establish priorities for energy-efficient testing applications using the MEL capabilities.

  14. Revealing Time-Unlocked Brain Activity from MEG Measurements by Common Waveform Estimation

    PubMed Central

    Takeda, Yusuke; Yamanaka, Kentaro; Yamagishi, Noriko; Sato, Masa-aki

    2014-01-01

    Brain activities related to cognitive functions, such as attention, occur with unknown and variable delays after stimulus onsets. Recently, we proposed a method (Common Waveform Estimation, CWE) that could extract such brain activities from magnetoencephalography (MEG) or electroencephalography (EEG) measurements. CWE estimates spatiotemporal MEG/EEG patterns occurring with unknown and variable delays, referred to here as unlocked waveforms, without hypotheses about their shapes. The purpose of this study is to demonstrate the usefulness of CWE for cognitive neuroscience. For this purpose, we show procedures to estimate unlocked waveforms using CWE and to examine their role. We applied CWE to the MEG epochs during Go trials of a visual Go/NoGo task. This revealed unlocked waveforms with interesting properties, specifically large alpha oscillations around the temporal areas. To examine the role of the unlocked waveform, we attempted to estimate the strength of the brain activity of the unlocked waveform in various conditions. We made a spatial filter to extract the component reflecting the brain activity of the unlocked waveform, applied this spatial filter to MEG data under different conditions (a passive viewing, a simple reaction time, and Go/NoGo tasks), and calculated the powers of the extracted components. Comparing the powers across these conditions suggests that the unlocked waveforms may reflect the inhibition of the task-irrelevant activities in the temporal regions while the subject attends to the visual stimulus. Our results demonstrate that CWE is a potential tool for revealing new findings of cognitive brain functions without any hypothesis in advance. PMID:24879410

  15. Spores of most common airborne fungi reveal no ice nucleation activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pummer, B. G.; Atanasova, L.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.; Druzhinina, I. S.; Grothe, H.

    2013-06-01

    Fungal spores are ubiquitous biological aerosols, which are considered to show ice nucleation (IN) activity. In this study the respective IN activity was tested in oil emulsion in the immersion freezing mode. The focus was laid on species of economical, ecological or sanitary significance. For the first time, not only common moulds, but also edible mushrooms (Basidiomycota, Agaricomycetes) were investigated, as they contribute massively to the total amount of fungal spores in the atmosphere. Only Fusarium avenaceum showed freezing events at low subzero-temperatures, while the other investigated fungal spores showed no significant IN activity. Furthermore, we selected a set of fungal strains from different sites and exposed them to occasional freezing stress during cultivation. Although the total protein expression was altered by this treatment, it had no significant impact on the IN activity.

  16. Launch Deployment Assembly Extravehicular Activity Neutral Buoyancy Development Test Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Loughead, T.

    1996-01-01

    This test evaluated the Launch Deployment Assembly (LDA) design for Extravehicular Activity (EVA) work sites (setup, igress, egress), reach and visual access, and translation required for cargo item removal. As part of the LDA design, this document describes the method and results of the LDA EVA Neutral Buoyancy Development Test to ensure that the LDA hardware support the deployment of the cargo items from the pallet. This document includes the test objectives, flight and mockup hardware description, descriptions of procedures and data collection used in the testing, and the results of the development test at the National Aeronautics and Space Administrations (NASA) Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) Neutral Buoyancy Simulator (NBS).

  17. A Simple Test of Class-Level Genetic Association Can Reveal Novel Cardiometabolic Trait Loci

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Jing; Nunez, Sara; Reed, Eric; Reilly, Muredach P.; Foulkes, Andrea S.

    2016-01-01

    Background Characterizing the genetic determinants of complex diseases can be further augmented by incorporating knowledge of underlying structure or classifications of the genome, such as newly developed mappings of protein-coding genes, epigenetic marks, enhancer elements and non-coding RNAs. Methods We apply a simple class-level testing framework, termed Genetic Class Association Testing (GenCAT), to identify protein-coding gene association with 14 cardiometabolic (CMD) related traits across 6 publicly available genome wide association (GWA) meta-analysis data resources. GenCAT uses SNP-level meta-analysis test statistics across all SNPs within a class of elements, as well as the size of the class and its unique correlation structure, to determine if the class is statistically meaningful. The novelty of findings is evaluated through investigation of regional signals. A subset of findings are validated using recently updated, larger meta-analysis resources. A simulation study is presented to characterize overall performance with respect to power, control of family-wise error and computational efficiency. All analysis is performed using the GenCAT package, R version 3.2.1. Results We demonstrate that class-level testing complements the common first stage minP approach that involves individual SNP-level testing followed by post-hoc ascribing of statistically significant SNPs to genes and loci. GenCAT suggests 54 protein-coding genes at 41 distinct loci for the 13 CMD traits investigated in the discovery analysis, that are beyond the discoveries of minP alone. An additional application to biological pathways demonstrates flexibility in defining genetic classes. Conclusions We conclude that it would be prudent to include class-level testing as standard practice in GWA analysis. GenCAT, for example, can be used as a simple, complementary and efficient strategy for class-level testing that leverages existing data resources, requires only summary level data in the form

  18. Single-Molecule Imaging Reveals the Activation Dynamics of Intracellular Protein Smad3 on Cell Membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Nan; Yang, Yong; He, Kangmin; Zhang, Fayun; Zhao, Libo; Zhou, Wei; Yuan, Jinghe; Liang, Wei; Fang, Xiaohong

    2016-09-01

    Smad3 is an intracellular protein that plays a key role in propagating transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) signals from cell membrane to nucleus. However whether the transient process of Smad3 activation occurs on cell membrane and how it is regulated remains elusive. Using advanced live-cell single-molecule fluorescence microscopy to image and track fluorescent protein-labeled Smad3, we observed and quantified, for the first time, the dynamics of individual Smad3 molecules docking to and activation on the cell membrane. It was found that Smad3 docked to cell membrane in both unstimulated and stimulated cells, but with different diffusion rates and dissociation kinetics. The change in its membrane docking dynamics can be used to study the activation of Smad3. Our results reveal that Smad3 binds with type I TGF-β receptor (TRI) even in unstimulated cells. Its activation is regulated by TRI phosphorylation but independent of receptor endocytosis. This study offers new information on TGF-β/Smad signaling, as well as a new approach to investigate the activation of intracellular signaling proteins for a better understanding of their functions in signal transduction.

  19. Single-Molecule Imaging Reveals the Activation Dynamics of Intracellular Protein Smad3 on Cell Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Li, Nan; Yang, Yong; He, Kangmin; Zhang, Fayun; Zhao, Libo; Zhou, Wei; Yuan, Jinghe; Liang, Wei; Fang, Xiaohong

    2016-01-01

    Smad3 is an intracellular protein that plays a key role in propagating transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) signals from cell membrane to nucleus. However whether the transient process of Smad3 activation occurs on cell membrane and how it is regulated remains elusive. Using advanced live-cell single-molecule fluorescence microscopy to image and track fluorescent protein-labeled Smad3, we observed and quantified, for the first time, the dynamics of individual Smad3 molecules docking to and activation on the cell membrane. It was found that Smad3 docked to cell membrane in both unstimulated and stimulated cells, but with different diffusion rates and dissociation kinetics. The change in its membrane docking dynamics can be used to study the activation of Smad3. Our results reveal that Smad3 binds with type I TGF-β receptor (TRI) even in unstimulated cells. Its activation is regulated by TRI phosphorylation but independent of receptor endocytosis. This study offers new information on TGF-β/Smad signaling, as well as a new approach to investigate the activation of intracellular signaling proteins for a better understanding of their functions in signal transduction. PMID:27641076

  20. Active-Site Monovalent Cations Revealed in a 1.55 Å Resolution Hammerhead Ribozyme Structure

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Michael; Schultz, Eric P.; Martick, Monika; Scott, William G.

    2013-01-01

    We have obtained a 1.55 Å crystal structure of a hammerhead ribozyme derived from Schistosoma mansoni in conditions that permit detailed observations of Na+ ion binding in the ribozyme's active site. At least two such Na+ ions are observed. The first Na+ ion binds to the N7 of G10.1 and the adjacent A9 phosphate in a manner identical to that previously observed for divalent cations. A second Na+ ion binds to the Hoogsteen face of G12, the general base in the hammerhead cleavage reaction, thereby potentially dissipating the negative charge of the catalytically active enolate form of the nucleotide base. A potential but more ambiguous third site bridges the A9 and scissile phosphates in a manner consistent with previous predictions. Hammerhead ribozymes have been observed to be active in the presence of high concentrations of monovalent cations, including Na+, but the mechanism by which monovalent cations substitute for divalent cations in hammerhead catalysis remains unclear. Our results enable us to suggest that Na+ directly and specifically substitutes for divalent cations in the hammerhead active site. The detailed geometry of the pre-catalytic active site complex is also revealed with a new level of precision, thanks to the quality of the electron density maps obtained from what is currently the highest resolution ribozyme structure in the protein data bank. PMID:23711504

  1. Nuclear receptor engineering based on novel structure activity relationships revealed by farnesyl pyrophosphate.

    PubMed

    Goyanka, Ritu; Das, Sharmistha; Samuels, Herbert H; Cardozo, Timothy

    2010-11-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) comprise the second largest protein family targeted by currently available drugs, acting via specific ligand interactions within the ligand binding domain (LBD). Recently, farnesyl pyrophosphate (FPP) was shown to be a unique promiscuous NR ligand, activating a subset of NR family members and inhibiting wound healing in skin. The current study aimed at visualizing the unique basis of FPP interaction with multiple receptors in order to identify general structure-activity relationships that operate across the NR family. Docking of FPP to the 3D structures of the LBDs of a diverse set of NRs consistently revealed an electrostatic FPP pyrophosphate contact with an NR arginine conserved in the NR family, a hydrophobic farnesyl contact with NR helix-12 and a ligand binding pocket volume between 300 and 430 Å(3) as the minimal requirements for FPP activation of any NR. Lack of any of these structural features appears to render a given NR resistant to FPP activation. We used these structure-activity relationships to rationally design and successfully engineer several mutant human estrogen receptors that retain responsiveness to estradiol but no longer respond to FPP.

  2. Frontal theta activity during working memory in test anxiety.

    PubMed

    Shi, Zhan; Gao, Xin; Zhou, Renlai

    2015-03-04

    Previous studies have shown that working memory (WM) processes are related to frontal-midline theta (FM-theta) activity (4-8 Hz) and test anxiety impairs WM performance. However, the effect of test anxiety on FM-theta activity during WM has not been investigated as yet. To examine this question, 37 undergraduates were asked to complete a modified reading span task involving neutral working memory capacity (WMC) and emotional WMC while their electroencephalography was measured. The results showed that relative to neutral WMC performance (the ability to remember the letter lists in the context of valence-neutral sentences), emotional WMC performance (the ability to remember the letter lists in the context of test-related sentences) was poorer for highly test anxious participants compared with lowly test anxious participants. Relative to FM-theta activity during remembering the letter lists in the valence-neutral context, FM-theta activity was weaker during remembering the letter lists in the test-related context for highly test anxious participants compared with lowly test anxious participants. These findings indicate that FM-theta is an index not only for successful WM manipulation but also for efficient prefrontal cortex functioning during WM.

  3. (13)C ENDOR Spectroscopy of Lipoxygenase-Substrate Complexes Reveals the Structural Basis for C-H Activation by Tunneling.

    PubMed

    Horitani, Masaki; Offenbacher, Adam R; Carr, Cody A Marcus; Yu, Tao; Hoeke, Veronika; Cutsail, George E; Hammes-Schiffer, Sharon; Klinman, Judith P; Hoffman, Brian M

    2017-02-08

    In enzymatic C-H activation by hydrogen tunneling, reduced barrier width is important for efficient hydrogen wave function overlap during catalysis. For native enzymes displaying nonadiabatic tunneling, the dominant reactive hydrogen donor-acceptor distance (DAD) is typically ca. 2.7 Å, considerably shorter than normal van der Waals distances. Without a ground state substrate-bound structure for the prototypical nonadiabatic tunneling system, soybean lipoxygenase (SLO), it has remained unclear whether the requisite close tunneling distance occurs through an unusual ground state active site arrangement or by thermally sampling conformational substates. Herein, we introduce Mn(2+) as a spin-probe surrogate for the SLO Fe ion; X-ray diffraction shows Mn-SLO is structurally faithful to the native enzyme. (13)C ENDOR then reveals the locations of (13)C10 and reactive (13)C11 of linoleic acid relative to the metal; (1)H ENDOR and molecular dynamics simulations of the fully solvated SLO model using ENDOR-derived restraints give additional metrical information. The resulting three-dimensional representation of the SLO active site ground state contains a reactive (a) conformer with hydrogen DAD of ∼3.1 Å, approximately van der Waals contact, plus an inactive (b) conformer with even longer DAD, establishing that stochastic conformational sampling is required to achieve reactive tunneling geometries. Tunneling-impaired SLO variants show increased DADs and variations in substrate positioning and rigidity, confirming previous kinetic and theoretical predictions of such behavior. Overall, this investigation highlights the (i) predictive power of nonadiabatic quantum treatments of proton-coupled electron transfer in SLO and (ii) sensitivity of ENDOR probes to test, detect, and corroborate kinetically predicted trends in active site reactivity and to reveal unexpected features of active site architecture.

  4. Mental Imagery as Revealed by Eye Movements and Spoken Predicates: A Test of Neurolinguistic Programming.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elich, Matthew; And Others

    1985-01-01

    Tested Bandler and Grinder's proposal that eye movement direction and spoken predicates are indicative of sensory modality of imagery. Subjects reported images in the three modes, but no relation between imagery and eye movements or predicates was found. Visual images were most vivid and often reported. Most subjects rated themselves as visual,…

  5. Meconium drug testing reveals maternal misuse of medicinal opioids among addicted mothers.

    PubMed

    Launiainen, Terhi; Nupponen, Irmeli; Halmesmäki, Erja; Ojanperä, Ilkka

    2013-07-01

    Meconium drug testing is a non-invasive method to detect prenatal drug exposure, which can cause severe problems for the infant, indicating the need for follow-up measures to ensure the welfare of the child. Meconium samples for drug testing were collected from 143 infants as part of routine clinical work among addicted mothers. The drug testing findings were combined with medical records including clinical background and follow-up data. The substances screened for included medicinal opioids, 6-monoacetylmorphine (a metabolite of heroin), amphetamines and tetrahydrocannabinolic acid. At least one of the 13 target drugs was detected in 57 (40%) meconium samples. In 21 cases, the findings were unexpected on the basis of clinical data or denied by the mother. Medicinal opioids, especially the opioid substitution treatment drugs buprenorphine and methadone, comprised the majority of the findings of both admitted and unexpected drug misuse. Meconium drug testing methods should target not just traditional illicit drugs but also prescription drugs with misuse potential.

  6. Structural factor in bending testing of fivefold twinned nanowires revealed by finite element analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mets, Magnus; Antsov, Mikk; Zadin, Vahur; Dorogin, Leonid M.; Aabloo, Alvo; Polyakov, Boris; Lõhmus, Rünno; Vlassov, Sergei

    2016-11-01

    In this study, we performed finite element method simulations to investigate the effect of the structure on the elastic response of Ag and Au nanowires (NWs) with a fivefold twinned crystal structure in bending tests. Two different models of a pentagonal NW were created: a ‘uniform model’ having an isotropic continuous structure and a ‘segmented model’ consisting of five anisotropic domains. Two asymmetrical mechanical test configurations were simulated: cantilevered beam bending and 3-point bending. The dimensions of the NW, the test configurations, as well as the force and the displacement ranges were based on the previously obtained experimental data. The results of the simulations demonstrated that the segmented model was stiffer than the uniform one in both of the bending tests. The effect was more pronounced for the cantilevered beam bending configuration. This fact should be taken into account in the interpretation of the increased measured Young’s modulus of pentagonal NWs in comparison to the elasticity of the same material in bulk form.

  7. Implicit and Explicit Tests of Odor Memory Reveal Different Outcomes Following Interference

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, Richard J.; Case, Trevor I.; Boakes, Robert A.

    2005-01-01

    Experiencing two odors as a mixture can later increase their perceived similarity when presented separately. Such an increase in similarity can be used as an implicit measure of how well participants remember the mixture. Three experiments tested the resistance to interference of this effect by first giving participants exposure to two 2-odor…

  8. From "aisle" to "labile": A hierarchical National Adult Reading Test scale revealed by Mokken scaling.

    PubMed

    McGrory, Sarah; Austin, Elizabeth J; Shenkin, Susan D; Starr, John M; Deary, Ian J

    2015-09-01

    Decline in cognitive ability is a core diagnostic criterion for dementia. Knowing the extent of decline requires a baseline score from which change can be reckoned. In the absence of prior cognitive ability scores, vocabulary-based cognitive tests are used to estimate premorbid cognitive ability. It is important that such tests are short yet informative, to maximize information and practicability. The National Adult Reading Test (NART) is commonly used to estimate premorbid intelligence. People are asked to pronounce 50 words ranging from easy to difficult but whether its words conform to a hierarchy is unknown. Five hundred eighty-seven healthy community-dwelling older people with known age 11 IQ scores completed the NART as part of the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 study. Mokken analysis was used to explore item responses for unidimensional, ordinal, and hierarchical scales. A strong hierarchical scale ("mini-NART") of 23 of the 50 items was identified. These items are invariantly ordered across all ability levels. The validity of the interpretation of this briefer scale's score as an estimate of premorbid ability was examined using the actual age 11 IQ score. The mini-NART accounted for a similar amount of the variance in age 11 IQ as the full NART (NART = 46.5%, mini-NART = 44.8%). The mini-NART is proposed as a useful short clinical tool to estimate prior cognitive ability. The mini-NART has clinical relevance, comprising highly discriminatory, invariantly ordered items allowing for sensitive measurement, and adaptive testing, reducing test administration time, and patient stress.

  9. Single-cell transcriptome analyses reveal signals to activate dormant neural stem cells.

    PubMed

    Luo, Yuping; Coskun, Volkan; Liang, Aibing; Yu, Juehua; Cheng, Liming; Ge, Weihong; Shi, Zhanping; Zhang, Kunshan; Li, Chun; Cui, Yaru; Lin, Haijun; Luo, Dandan; Wang, Junbang; Lin, Connie; Dai, Zachary; Zhu, Hongwen; Zhang, Jun; Liu, Jie; Liu, Hailiang; deVellis, Jean; Horvath, Steve; Sun, Yi Eve; Li, Siguang

    2015-05-21

    The scarcity of tissue-specific stem cells and the complexity of their surrounding environment have made molecular characterization of these cells particularly challenging. Through single-cell transcriptome and weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA), we uncovered molecular properties of CD133(+)/GFAP(-) ependymal (E) cells in the adult mouse forebrain neurogenic zone. Surprisingly, prominent hub genes of the gene network unique to ependymal CD133(+)/GFAP(-) quiescent cells were enriched for immune-responsive genes, as well as genes encoding receptors for angiogenic factors. Administration of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) activated CD133(+) ependymal neural stem cells (NSCs), lining not only the lateral but also the fourth ventricles and, together with basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), elicited subsequent neural lineage differentiation and migration. This study revealed the existence of dormant ependymal NSCs throughout the ventricular surface of the CNS, as well as signals abundant after injury for their activation.

  10. Fifteen years of thermal activity at Vanuatu's volcanoes (2000-2015) revealed by MIROVA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coppola, D.; Laiolo, M.; Cigolini, C.

    2016-08-01

    The Vanuatu archipelago consists of 80 islands and hosts 5 subaerial volcanoes (Yasur, Lopevi, Ambrym, Aoba and Gaua) that have shown sign of activity during the past decade. In this contribution we provide a 15 years-long datasets (2000-2015) of the thermal activity recorded at these active volcanoes by means of MIROVA (Middle InfraRed Observation of Volcanic Activity) a new volcanic hotspot detection system based on MODIS data. The analyzed volcanoes are characterized by a spectrum of volcanic activities whose thermal signature has been tracked and carefully analyzed. These include strombolian-vulcanian explosions at Yasur, lava flows at Lopevi, lava lakes at Ambrym, surtseyan-type eruptions within the Voui crater lake of Aoba and ash-dominated eruptions with strong degassing at Gaua. The collected data reveal several details of the long term eruptive dynamics at single sites such as a monthly long pulse in thermal emissions at Yasur volcano as well as at the two active craters of Ambrym (Benbow and Marum). Heating cycles within Aoba crater lake and intermittent pressurized eruptions at Lopevi volcano has also been detected and shed light in the eruptive dynamics of the analyzed volcanoes. In addition we were able to track a two years long intensification of thermal output at Benbow crater (Ambrym) that preceded the occurrence of the first intra-caldera eruptions of this volcano since 1989. We emphasize how the data provided by MIROVA represent a new, safe and affordable method for monitoring in near-real time a large spectrum of volcanic activities taking place at Vanuatu and other volcanic areas.

  11. Effects of Vigorous Intensity Physical Activity on Mathematics Test Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phillips, David S.; Hannon, James C.; Castelli, Darla M.

    2015-01-01

    The effect of an acute bout of physical activity on academic performance in school-based settings is under researched. The purpose of this study was to examine associations between a single, vigorous (70-85%) bout of physical activity completed during physical education on standardized mathematics test performance among 72, eighth grade students…

  12. Physical Activity and Cervical Cancer Testing among American Indian Women

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muus, Kyle J.; Baker-Demaray, Twyla B.; Bogart, T. Andy; Duncan, Glen E.; Jacobsen, Clemma; Buchwald, Dedra S.; Henderson, Jeffrey A.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: Studies have shown that women who engage in high levels of physical activity have higher rates of cancer screening, including Papanicalaou (Pap) tests. Because American Indian (AI) women are at high risk for cervical cancer morbidity and mortality, we examined Pap screening prevalence and assessed whether physical activity was associated…

  13. The dJ/dS Ratio Test Reveals Hundreds of Novel Putative Cancer Drivers

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Han; Xing, Ke; He, Xionglei

    2015-01-01

    Computational tools with a balanced sensitivity and specificity in identification of candidate cancer drivers are highly desired. In this study, we propose a new statistical test, namely the dJ/dS ratio test, to compute the relative mutation rate of exon/intron junction sites (dJ) to synonymous sites (dS); observation of dJ/dS ratio larger than 1 in cancer indicates positive selection for splicing deregulation, a signature of cancer driver genes. Using this method, we analyzed the data from The Cancer Genome Atlas and identified hundreds of novel putative cancer drivers. Interestingly, these genes are highly enriched in biological processes related to the development and maintenance of multicellularity, paralleling a previous finding that cancer evolves back to be unicellular by knocking down the multicellularity-associated genetic network. PMID:25873590

  14. Structural snapshots of Xer recombination reveal activation by synaptic complex remodeling and DNA bending

    PubMed Central

    Bebel, Aleksandra; Karaca, Ezgi; Kumar, Banushree; Stark, W Marshall; Barabas, Orsolya

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial Xer site-specific recombinases play an essential genome maintenance role by unlinking chromosome multimers, but their mechanism of action has remained structurally uncharacterized. Here, we present two high-resolution structures of Helicobacter pylori XerH with its recombination site DNA difH, representing pre-cleavage and post-cleavage synaptic intermediates in the recombination pathway. The structures reveal that activation of DNA strand cleavage and rejoining involves large conformational changes and DNA bending, suggesting how interaction with the cell division protein FtsK may license recombination at the septum. Together with biochemical and in vivo analysis, our structures also reveal how a small sequence asymmetry in difH defines protein conformation in the synaptic complex and orchestrates the order of DNA strand exchanges. Our results provide insights into the catalytic mechanism of Xer recombination and a model for regulation of recombination activity during cell division. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19706.001 PMID:28009253

  15. Simple F Test Reveals Gene-Gene Interactions in Case-Control Studies

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Guanjie; Yuan, Ao; Zhou, Jie; Bentley, Amy R.; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Rotimi, Charles N.

    2012-01-01

    Missing heritability is still a challenge for Genome Wide Association Studies (GWAS). Gene-gene interactions may partially explain this residual genetic influence and contribute broadly to complex disease. To analyze the gene-gene interactions in case-control studies of complex disease, we propose a simple, non-parametric method that utilizes the F-statistic. This approach consists of three steps. First, we examine the joint distribution of a pair of SNPs in cases and controls separately. Second, an F-test is used to evaluate the ratio of dependence in cases to that of controls. Finally, results are adjusted for multiple tests. This method was used to evaluate gene-gene interactions that are associated with risk of Type 2 Diabetes among African Americans in the Howard University Family Study. We identified 18 gene-gene interactions (P < 0.0001). Compared with the commonly-used logistical regression method, we demonstrate that the F-ratio test is an efficient approach to measuring gene-gene interactions, especially for studies with limited sample size. PMID:22837643

  16. Active Protection of an MgB2 Test Coil

    PubMed Central

    Park, Dong Keun; Hahn, Seungyong; Bascuñán, Juan; Iwasa, Yukikazu

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents results of a study, experimental and computational, of a detect-and-activate-the-heater protection technique applied to a magnesium diboride (MgB2) test coil operated in semi-persistent mode. The test coil with a winding ID of 25 cm and wound with ~500-m long reacted MgB2 wire was operated at 4.2 K immersed in a bath of liquid helium. In this active technique, upon the initiation of a “hot spot” of a length ~10 cm, induced by a “quench heater,” a “protection heater” (PH) of ~600-cm long planted within the test coil is activated. The normal zone created by the PH is large enough to absorb the test coil’s entire initial stored energy and still keeps the peak temperature within the winding below ~260 K. PMID:22081754

  17. Brain Network Activation (BNA) reveals scopolamine-induced impairment of visual working memory.

    PubMed

    Reches, Amit; Levy-Cooperman, Naama; Laufer, Ilan; Shani-Hershkovitch, Revital; Ziv, Keren; Kerem, Dani; Gal, Noga; Stern, Yaki; Cukierman, Guy; Romach, Myroslava K; Sellers, Edward M; Geva, Amir B

    2014-09-01

    The overarching goal of this event-related potential (ERP) study was to examine the effects of scopolamine on the dynamics of brain network activation using a novel ERP network analysis method known as Brain Network Activation (BNA). BNA was used for extracting group-common stimulus-activated network patterns elicited to matching probe stimuli in the context of a delayed matching-to-sample task following placebo and scopolamine treatments administered to healthy participants. The BNA extracted networks revealed the existence of two pathophysiological mechanisms following scopolamine, disconnection, and compensation. Specifically, weaker frontal theta and parietal alpha coupling was accompanied with enhanced fronto-centro-parietal theta activation relative to placebo. In addition, using the characteristic BNA network of each treatment as well as corresponding literature-guided selective subnetworks as combined biomarkers managed to differentiate between individual responses to each of the treatments. Behavioral effects associated with scopolamine included delayed response time and impaired response accuracy. These results indicate that the BNA method is sensitive to the effects of scopolamine on working memory and that it may potentially enable diagnosis and treatment assessment of dysfunctions associated with cholinergic deficiency.

  18. Rapid ester biosynthesis screening reveals a high activity alcohol-O-acyltransferase (AATase) from tomato fruit.

    PubMed

    Lin, Jyun-Liang; Zhu, Jie; Wheeldon, Ian

    2016-05-01

    Ethyl and acetate esters are naturally produced in various yeasts, plants, and bacteria. The biosynthetic pathways that produce these esters share a common reaction step, the condensation of acetyl/acyl-CoA with an alcohol by alcohol-O-acetyl/acyltransferase (AATase). Recent metabolic engineering efforts exploit AATase activity to produce fatty acid ethyl esters as potential diesel fuel replacements as well as short- and medium-chain volatile esters as fragrance and flavor compounds. These efforts have been limited by the lack of a rapid screen to quantify ester biosynthesis. Enzyme engineering efforts have also been limited by the lack of a high throughput screen for AATase activity. Here, we developed a high throughput assay for AATase activity and used this assay to discover a high activity AATase from tomato fruit, Solanum lycopersicum (Atf-S.l). Atf1-S.l exhibited broad specificity towards acyl-CoAs with chain length from C4 to C10 and was specific towards 1-pentanol. The AATase screen also revealed new acyl-CoA substrate specificities for Atf1, Atf2, Eht1, and Eeb1 from Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and Atf-C.m from melon fruit, Cucumis melo, thus increasing the pool of characterized AATases that can be used in ester biosynthesis of ester-based fragrance and flavor compounds as well as fatty acid ethyl ester biofuels.

  19. Structures of glycosylated mammalian glutaminyl cyclases reveal conformational variability near the active center.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Carrillo, David; Koch, Birgit; Parthier, Christoph; Wermann, Michael; Dambe, Tresfore; Buchholz, Mirko; Ludwig, Hans-Henning; Heiser, Ulrich; Rahfeld, Jens-Ulrich; Stubbs, Milton T; Schilling, Stephan; Demuth, Hans-Ulrich

    2011-07-19

    Formation of N-terminal pyroglutamate (pGlu or pE) from glutaminyl or glutamyl precursors is catalyzed by glutaminyl cyclases (QC). As the formation of pGlu-amyloid has been linked with Alzheimer's disease, inhibitors of QCs are currently the subject of intense development. Here, we report three crystal structures of N-glycosylated mammalian QC from humans (hQC) and mice (mQC). Whereas the overall structures of the enzymes are similar to those reported previously, two surface loops in the neighborhood of the active center exhibit conformational variability. Furthermore, two conserved cysteine residues form a disulfide bond at the base of the active center that was not present in previous reports of hQC structure. Site-directed mutagenesis suggests a structure-stabilizing role of the disulfide bond. At the entrance to the active center, the conserved tryptophan residue, W(207), which displayed multiple orientations in previous structure, shows a single conformation in both glycosylated human and murine QCs. Although mutagenesis of W(207) into leucine or glutamine altered substrate conversion significantly, the binding constants of inhibitors such as the highly potent PQ50 (PBD150) were minimally affected. The crystal structure of PQ50 bound to the active center of murine QC reveals principal binding determinants provided by the catalytic zinc ion and a hydrophobic funnel. This study presents a first comparison of two mammalian QCs containing typical, conserved post-translational modifications.

  20. Basophil Activation Test identifies the patients with Chronic Spontaneous Urticaria suffering the most active disease

    PubMed Central

    Curto‐Barredo, Laia; Yelamos, Jose; Gimeno, Ramon; Mojal, Sergi; Pujol, Ramon M.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Introduction The basophil activation test showing CD63 up regulation could be a specific and sensitive in vitro complementary text to the in vivo autologous serum skin test for the activity assessment of the patients suffering autoimmune chronic spontaneous urticaria. The aim of this study is to define the basophil activation test as a useful tool in clinical practice in order to identify those patients with more active disease. Methods We screened 139 patients (96 women) diagnosed of chronic spontaneous urticaria using simultaneously autologous serum skin test and basophil activation test and their relationship with disease activity. Results Positive autologous serum skin test was found in 56.8%; from them, 31.6% were basophil activation test positive. Negative autologous serum skin test result was found in the 43.2% of the sample that showed negative CD63 expression results in all cases, except one. Patients with positive autologous serum skin test and positive CD63 by basophil activation test showed significant higher Urticaria Activity Score of 7 days (P = 0.004) and of 3 weeks (P = 0.001) than patients with positive autologous serum skin test and negative CD63 (mean ± standard deviation [SD] 26.57 ± 10.56 versus 18.40 ± 12.05 for the Urticaria Activity Score of 7 days and 56.47 ± 23.78 versus 39.88 ± 25.44 for the Urticaria Activity Score of 3 weeks). Conclusions The CD63 expression on basophils appears as a reliable in vitro marker, useful in clinical practice in combination with autologous serum skin test to define chronic spontaneous urticaria patients with the highest urticaria activity that impairs a normal life. PMID:27980778

  1. The multivariate concentric square field test reveals different behavioural profiles in male AA and ANA rats with regard to risk taking and environmental reactivity.

    PubMed

    Roman, Erika; Meyerson, Bengt J; Hyytiä, Petri; Nylander, Ingrid

    2007-11-02

    The aim of the present investigation was to compare the behavioural profiles in alcohol-preferring AA (Alko, alcohol) and alcohol-avoiding ANA (Alko, non-alcohol) rats. Twelve adult, alcohol-naïve male AA and ANA rats were tested in the recently established multivariate concentric square field (MCSF) test. The more traditional open field and elevated plus-maze tests were used as reference tests. Six weeks after the initial MCSF test, a repeated testing was used to explore differences in acquired recognition after a previous experience. The results revealed distinct differences between the two lines. The ANA rats were generally more active in the three tests. In the MCSF, parameters of risk taking and shelter seeking indicated differences between the two lines. The ANA rats had higher shelter seeking behaviour and less risk taking behaviour than the AA rats. Repeated exposure to the MCSF caused a general decrease in activity and reduction in the number of visits to the various zones, especially evident in the ANA rats. The ANA rats showed more shelter seeking than the AA rats and also more shelter seeking than in the first trial, supporting an "anxiety-like" profile in these rats. In conclusion, the parameters related to risk taking and shelter seeking revealed obvious differences between AA and ANA rats. The higher risk taking behaviour seen in the AA rats might relate to their innate propensity for high voluntary alcohol intake. The results are discussed in relation to the reported neurobiological differences and in relation to other alcohol-preferring and alcohol-avoiding rat lines.

  2. Detection of bacterial phosphatase activity by means of an original and simple test.

    PubMed Central

    Satta, G; Grazi, G; Varaldo, P E; Fontana, R

    1979-01-01

    A new test for the detection of bacterial phosphatase activity has been devised. The test is performed using agar media containing both methyl green (MG) and phenolphthalein diphosphate (PDP); in these media phosphatase-producing strains grow deep-green-stained colonies whereas non-producing strains do not. A total of 739 different strains were tested, including 593 staphylococci, 95 micrococci, 11 streptococci, 10 corynebacteria, 14 enterobacteria, and 16 candidae. All strains found phosphatase-positive according to the conventional phosphatase test displayed deep-green-stained colonies on MG-PDP media, whereas all phosphatase-negative strains showed unstained colonies on the same media. The main advantages of the present phosphatase test as compared with other conventional ones are that it is more simple to perform, it can reveal the phosphatase activity of colonies grown in deep agar, and can be incorporated into commercial multitest kits. PMID:87403

  3. Cadmium-transformed cells in the in vitro cell transformation assay reveal different proliferative behaviours and activated pathways.

    PubMed

    Forcella, M; Callegaro, G; Melchioretto, P; Gribaldo, L; Frattini, M; Stefanini, F M; Fusi, P; Urani, C

    2016-10-01

    The in vitro Cell Transformation Assay (CTA) is a powerful tool for mechanistic studies of carcinogenesis. The endpoint is the classification of transformed colonies (foci) by means of standard morphological features. To increase throughput and reliability of CTAs, one of the suggested follow-up activities is to exploit the comprehension of the mechanisms underlying cell transformation. To this end, we have performed CTAs testing CdCl2, a widespread environmental contaminant classified as a human carcinogen with the underlying mechanisms of action not completely understood. We have isolated and re-seeded the cells at the end (6weeks) of in vitro CTAs to further identify the biochemical pathways underlying the transformed phenotype of foci. Morphological evaluations and proliferative assays confirmed the loss of contact-inhibition and the higher proliferative rate of transformed clones. The biochemical analysis of EGFR pathway revealed that, despite the same initial carcinogenic stimulus (1μM CdCl2 for 24h), transformed clones are characterized by the activation of two different molecular pathways: proliferation (Erk activation) or survival (Akt activation). Our preliminary results on molecular characterization of cell clones from different foci could be exploited for CTAs improvement, supporting the comprehension of the in vivo process and complementing the morphological evaluation of foci.

  4. Characterization of the circulating hemocytes in mud crab (Scylla olivacea) revealed phenoloxidase activity.

    PubMed

    Mangkalanan, Seksan; Sanguanrat, Piyachat; Utairangsri, Tanatchaporn; Sritunyalucksana, Kallaya; Krittanai, Chartchai

    2014-05-01

    This study focused on an isolation and characterization of the circulating hemocytes in mud crab, Scylla olivacea. Isolation of specific cell types of hemocytes from crab hemolymph was accomplished by using 60% Percoll density gradient centrifugation. Four separated bands of the hemocytes were successfully obtained. Characterization of these isolated hemocytes by light microscope using trypan blue-rose bengal staining, rose bengal-hematoxilin staining, and phase contrast revealed four distinct types of hemocyte cells. Using their specific morphology and granularity, they were identified as hyaline cell (HC), small granular cell (SGC), large granular cell (LGC) and mixed granular cell (MGC). Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) revealed more details on specific cell size, size of cytoplasmic granule, and nuclear to cytoplasmic ratio, and confirmed the classification. Relative abundance of these cells types in the hemolymph of an adult crab were 15.50±8.22% for HC, 55.50±7.15% for SGC, 13.50±5.28% for LGC, and 15.50±3.50% for MGC. Proteomic analysis of protein expression for each specific cell types by two-dimensional electrophoresis identified two highly abundant proteins, prophenoloxidase (ProPO) and peroxinectin in LGC. Determination of phenoloxidase (PO) activity in each isolated cell types using in vitro and in situ chemical assays confirmed the presence of PO activity only in LGC. Based on an increased PO activity of crab hemolymph during the course of White Spot Syndrome Virus (WSSV) infection, these results suggest that prophenoloxidase pathway was employed for host defense mechanism against WSSV and it may link to the role of large granular hemocyte.

  5. Potential genotoxic effects of melted snow from an urban area revealed by the Allium cepa test.

    PubMed

    Blagojević, Jelena; Stamenković, Gorana; Vujosević, Mladen

    2009-09-01

    The presence of well-known atmospheric pollutants is regularly screened for in large towns but knowledge about the effects of mixtures of different pollutants and especially their genotoxic potential is largely missing. Since falling snow collects pollutants from the air, melted snow samples could be suitable for evaluating potential genotoxicity. For this purpose the Allium cepa anaphase-telophase test was used to analyse melted snow samples from Belgrade, the capital city of Serbia. Samples of snow were taken at two sites, characterized by differences in pollution intensity, in three successive years. At the more polluted site the analyses showed a very high degree of both toxicity and genotoxicity in the first year of the study corresponding to the effects of the known mutagen used as the positive control. At the other site the situation was much better but not without warning signals. The results showed that standard analyses for the presence of certain contaminants in the air do not give an accurate picture of the possible consequences of urban air pollution because the genotoxic potential remains hidden. The A. cepa test has been demonstrated to be very convenient for evaluation of air pollution through analyses of melted snow samples.

  6. Amelogenin test abnormalities revealed in Belarusian population during forensic DNA analysis.

    PubMed

    Borovko, Sergey; Shyla, Alena; Korban, Victorya; Borovko, Alexandra

    2015-03-01

    Study of gender markers is a part of routine forensic genetic examination of crime scene and reference samples, paternity testing and personal identification. Amelogenin locus as a gender marker is included in majority of forensic STR kits of different manufacturers. In current study we report 11 cases of amelogenin abnormalities identified in males of Belarusian origin: 9 cases of AMELY dropout and 2 cases of AMELX dropout. Cases were obtained from forensic casework (n=9) and paternity testing (n=2) groups. In 4 out of 9 AMELY-negative cases deletion of AMELY was associated with the loss of DYS458 marker. In addition, we identified 3 males with SRY-positive XX male syndrome. Deletion of the long arm of the Y-chromosome was detected in two XX males. Loss of the major part of the Y-chromosome was identified in the third XX male. The presence of two X-chromosomes in XX males was confirmed with the use of Mentype(®) Argus X-8 PCR Amplification Kit. AMELY null allele observed in 2 out of 9 cases with AMELY dropout can be caused by mutation in the primer-binding site of AMELY allele. Primer-binding site mutations of AMELX can result in AMELX dropout identified in 2 cases with amplification failure of AMELX. Our study represents the first report and molecular genetic investigation of amelogenin abnormalities in the Belarusian population.

  7. PDC Bit Testing at Sandia Reveals Influence of Chatter in Hard-Rock Drilling

    SciTech Connect

    RAYMOND,DAVID W.

    1999-10-14

    Polycrystalline diamond compact (PDC) bits have yet to be routinely applied to drilling the hard-rock formations characteristic of geothermal reservoirs. Most geothermal production wells are currently drilled with tungsten-carbide-insert roller-cone bits. PDC bits have significantly improved penetration rates and bit life beyond roller-cone bits in the oil and gas industry where soft to medium-hard rock types are encountered. If PDC bits could be used to double current penetration rates in hard rock geothermal well-drilling costs could be reduced by 15 percent or more. PDC bits exhibit reasonable life in hard-rock wear testing using the relatively rigid setups typical of laboratory testing. Unfortunately, field experience indicates otherwise. The prevailing mode of failure encountered by PDC bits returning from hard-rock formations in the field is catastrophic, presumably due to impact loading. These failures usually occur in advance of any appreciable wear that might dictate cutter replacement. Self-induced bit vibration, or ''chatter'', is one of the mechanisms that may be responsible for impact damage to PDC cutters in hard-rock drilling. Chatter is more severe in hard-rock formations since they induce significant dynamic loading on the cutter elements. Chatter is a phenomenon whereby the drillstring becomes dynamically unstable and excessive sustained vibrations occur. Unlike forced vibration, the force (i.e., weight on bit) that drives self-induced vibration is coupled with the response it produces. Many of the chatter principles derived in the machine tool industry are applicable to drilling. It is a simple matter to make changes to a machine tool to study the chatter phenomenon. This is not the case with drilling. Chatter occurs in field drilling due to the flexibility of the drillstring. Hence, laboratory setups must be made compliant to observe chatter.

  8. Comparative proteomic analysis reveals activation of mucosal innate immune signaling pathways during cholera.

    PubMed

    Ellis, Crystal N; LaRocque, Regina C; Uddin, Taher; Krastins, Bryan; Mayo-Smith, Leslie M; Sarracino, David; Karlsson, Elinor K; Rahman, Atiqur; Shirin, Tahmina; Bhuiyan, Taufiqur R; Chowdhury, Fahima; Khan, Ashraful Islam; Ryan, Edward T; Calderwood, Stephen B; Qadri, Firdausi; Harris, Jason B

    2015-03-01

    Vibrio cholerae O1 is a major cause of acute watery diarrhea in over 50 countries. Evidence suggests that V. cholerae O1 may activate inflammatory pathways, and a recent study of a Bangladeshi population showed that variants in innate immune genes play a role in mediating susceptibility to cholera. We analyzed human proteins present in the small intestine of patients infected with V. cholerae O1 to characterize the host response to this pathogen. We collected duodenal biopsy specimens from patients with acute cholera after stabilization and again 30 days after initial presentation. Peptides extracted from biopsy specimens were sequenced and quantified using label-free mass spectrometry and SEQUEST. Twenty-seven host proteins were differentially abundant between the acute and convalescent stages of infection; the majority of these have known roles in innate defense, cytokine production, and apoptosis. Immunostaining confirmed that two proteins, WARS and S100A8, were more abundant in lamina propria cells during the acute stage of cholera. Analysis of the differentially abundant proteins revealed the activation of key regulators of inflammation by the innate immune system, including Toll-like receptor 4, nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells, mitogen-activated protein kinases, and caspase-dependent inflammasomes. Interleukin-12β (IL-12β) was a regulator of several proteins that were activated during cholera, and we confirmed that IL-12β was produced by lymphocytes recovered from duodenal biopsy specimens of cholera patients. Our study shows that a broad inflammatory response is generated in the gut early after onset of cholera, which may be critical in the development of long-term mucosal immunity against V. cholerae O1.

  9. Antioxidant, Antimicrobial Activity and Toxicity Test of Pilea microphylla

    PubMed Central

    Modarresi Chahardehi, Amir; Ibrahim, Darah; Fariza Sulaiman, Shaida

    2010-01-01

    A total of 9 plant extracts were tested, using two different kinds of extracting methods to evaluate the antioxidant and antimicrobial activities from Pilea microphylla (Urticaceae family) and including toxicity test. Antioxidant activity were tested by using DPPH free radical scavenging, also total phenolic contents and total flavonoid contents were determined. Toxicity assay carried out by using brine shrimps. Methanol extract of method I (ME I) showed the highest antioxidant activity at 69.51 ± 1.03. Chloroform extract of method I (CE I) showed the highest total phenolic contents at 72.10 ± 0.71 and chloroform extract of method II (CE II) showed the highest total flavonoid contents at 60.14 ± 0.33. The antimicrobial activity of Pilea microphylla extract was tested in vitro by using disc diffusion method and minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC). The Pilea microphylla extract showed antibacterial activity against some Gram negative and positive bacteria. The extracts did not exhibit antifungal and antiyeast activity. The hexane extract of method I (HE I) was not toxic against brine shrimp (LC50 value was 3880 μg/ml). Therefore, the extracts could be suitable as antimicrobial and antioxidative agents in food industry. PMID:20652052

  10. Stepwise multiphoton activation fluorescence reveals a new method of melanin detection.

    PubMed

    Lai, Zhenhua; Kerimo, Josef; Mega, Yair; Dimarzio, Charles A

    2013-06-01

    The stepwise multiphoton activated fluorescence (SMPAF) of melanin, activated by a continuous-wave mode near infrared (NIR) laser, reveals a broad spectrum extending from the visible spectra to the NIR and has potential application for a low-cost, reliable method of detecting melanin. SMPAF images of melanin in mouse hair and skin are compared with conventional multiphoton fluorescence microscopy and confocal reflectance microscopy (CRM). By combining CRM with SMPAF, we can locate melanin reliably. However, we have the added benefit of eliminating background interference from other components inside mouse hair and skin. The melanin SMPAF signal from the mouse hair is a mixture of a two-photon process and a third-order process. The melanin SMPAF emission spectrum is activated by a 1505.9-nm laser light, and the resulting spectrum has a peak at 960 nm. The discovery of the emission peak may lead to a more energy-efficient method of background-free melanin detection with less photo-bleaching.

  11. A chimeric prokaryotic pentameric ligand–gated channel reveals distinct pathways of activation

    PubMed Central

    Schmandt, Nicolaus; Velisetty, Phanindra; Chalamalasetti, Sreevatsa V.; Stein, Richard A.; Bonner, Ross; Talley, Lauren; Parker, Mark D.; Mchaourab, Hassane S.; Yee, Vivien C.; Lodowski, David T.

    2015-01-01

    Recent high resolution structures of several pentameric ligand–gated ion channels have provided unprecedented details of their molecular architecture. However, the conformational dynamics and structural rearrangements that underlie gating and allosteric modulation remain poorly understood. We used a combination of electrophysiology, double electron–electron resonance (DEER) spectroscopy, and x-ray crystallography to investigate activation mechanisms in a novel functional chimera with the extracellular domain (ECD) of amine-gated Erwinia chrysanthemi ligand–gated ion channel, which is activated by primary amines, and the transmembrane domain of Gloeobacter violaceus ligand–gated ion channel, which is activated by protons. We found that the chimera was independently gated by primary amines and by protons. The crystal structure of the chimera in its resting state, at pH 7.0 and in the absence of primary amines, revealed a closed-pore conformation and an ECD that is twisted with respect to the transmembrane region. Amine- and pH-induced conformational changes measured by DEER spectroscopy showed that the chimera exhibits a dual mode of gating that preserves the distinct conformational changes of the parent channels. Collectively, our findings shed light on both conserved and divergent features of gating mechanisms in this class of channels, and will facilitate the design of better allosteric modulators. PMID:26415570

  12. Community Lenses Revealing the Role of Sociocultural Environment on Physical Activity

    PubMed Central

    Belon, Ana Paula; Nieuwendyk, Laura M.; Vallianatos, Helen; Nykiforuk, Candace I. J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To identify perceptions of how sociocultural environment enabled and hindered physical activity (PA) participation. Design Community-based participatory research. Setting Two semirural and two urban communities located in Alberta, Canada. Participants Thirty-five people (74.3% females, 71.4% aged 25–64 years) across the four communities. Method PhotoVoice activities occurred over 3 months during the spring of 2009. Participants were asked to document perceived environmental attributes that might foster or inhibit PA in their community. Photographs and narratives were shared in one-on-one interviews. Line-by-line coding of the transcripts was independently conducted by two researchers using an inductive approach. Codes were arranged into themes and subthemes, which were then organized into the Analysis Grid for Environments Linked to Obesity (ANGELO) framework. Results Six main themes (accompanied by subthemes) emerged: sociocultural aesthetics, safety, social involvement, PA motivation, cultural ideas of recreation, and car culture. Representative quotes and photographs illustrate enablers and obstacles identified by participants. Conclusion This PhotoVoice study revealed how aspects of participants’ sociocultural environments shaped their decisions to be physically active. Providing more PA resources is only one step in the promotion of supportive environments. Strategies should also account for the beautification and maintenance of communities, increasing feelings of safety, enhancement of social support among community members, popularization of PA, and mitigating car culture, among others. PMID:25973966

  13. Spores of many common airborne fungi reveal no ice nucleation activity in oil immersion freezing experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pummer, B. G.; Atanasova, L.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.; Druzhinina, I. S.; Fröhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Grothe, H.

    2013-12-01

    Fungal spores are ubiquitous biological aerosols, which are considered to act as ice nuclei. In this study the ice nucleation (IN) activity of spores harvested from 29 fungal strains belonging to 21 different species was tested in the immersion freezing mode by microscopic observation of water-in-oil emulsions. Spores of 8 of these strains were also investigated in a microdroplet freezing array instrument. The focus was laid on species of economical, ecological or sanitary significance. Besides common molds (Ascomycota), some representatives of the widespread group of mushrooms (Basidiomycota) were also investigated. Fusarium avenaceum was the only sample showing IN activity at relatively high temperatures (about 264 K), while the other investigated fungal spores showed no freezing above 248 K. Many of the samples indeed froze at homogeneous ice nucleation temperatures (about 237 K). In combination with other studies, this suggests that only a limited number of species may act as atmospheric ice nuclei. This would be analogous to what is already known for the bacterial ice nuclei. Apart from that, we selected a set of fungal strains from different sites and exposed them to occasional freezing stress during their cultivation. This was in order to test if the exposure to a cold environment encourages the expression of ice nuclei during growth as a way of adaptation. Although the total protein expression was altered by this treatment, it had no significant impact on the IN activity.

  14. A Rodent Model of Schizophrenia Reveals Increase in Creatine Kinase Activity with Associated Behavior Changes

    PubMed Central

    Canever, Leila; Oliveira, Larissa; de Luca, Renata D'Altoé; Correa, Paulo T. F.; Fraga, Daiane de B.; Matos, Maria Paula; Scaini, Giselli; Quevedo, João; Streck, Emílio L.; Zugno, Alexandra I.

    2010-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a debilitating mental disorder characterized by positive (delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech) and negative (affective flattering, avolition and social withdrawal) symptoms as well as cognitive deficits. The frequency, severity and topography characterize the disorder as heterogeneous, the pathophysiology of schizophrenia is poorly understood. Sub-anesthetic doses of ketamine produce hyperactivity, stereotypy and abnormal social interaction and it is used as a model of schizophrenia. In this study, we induced an animal model by acute sub-anesthetic doses of ketamine and tested different behavioral parameters. We also evaluated the activity of creatine kinase (CK) in brain of rats treated with ketamine. Our results demonstrated that administration of 10, 25 and 50 mg/kg of ketamine induced an increase of covered distance in habituated and non-habituated rats to the behavioral apparatus. Ketamine administration induced significant social deficits and stereotypic behavioral in all doses tested. Finally we evaluated the effect of different doses of ketamine on creatinine kinase (CK) activity and we observed that CK activity is increased inspecific regions of the brain. Our study suggests that our animal model may be used as a model of schizophrenia and that cerebral energy metabolism might be altered in the brain of schizophrenic patients, probably leading to alterations that might be involved in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. PMID:21270541

  15. Space Shuttle Orbiter Approach and Landing Test Evaluation Report. Captive-Active Flight Test Summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    Captive-active tests consisted of three mated carrier aircraft/Orbiter flights with an active manned Orbiter. The objectives of this series of flights were to (1) verify the separation profile, (2) verify the integrated structure, aerodynamics, and flight control system, (3) verify Orbiter integrated system operations, and (4) refine and finalize carrier aircraft, Orbiter crew, and ground procedures in preparation for free flight tests. A summary description of the flights is presented with assessments of flight test requirements, and of the performance operations, and of significant flight anomalies is included.

  16. The elastase-PK101 structure: Mechanism of an ultrasensitive activity-based probe revealed

    DOE PAGES

    Lechtenberg, Bernhard C.; Robinson, Howard R.; Kasperkiewicz, Paulina; ...

    2015-01-22

    Human neutrophil elastase (HNE) plays a central role in neutrophil host defense, but its broad specificity makes HNE a difficult target for both inhibitor and probe development. Recently, we identified the unnatural amino acid containing activity-based probe PK101, which exhibits astounding sensitivity and selectivity for HNE, yet completely lacks mechanistic explanation for its unique characteristics. Here, we present the crystal structure of the HNE-PK101 complex which not only reveals the basis for PK101 ultrasensitivity but also uncovers so far unrecognized HNE features. Strikingly, the Nle(O-Bzl) function in the P4 position of PK101 reveals and leverages an “exo-pocket” on HNE asmore » a critical factor for selectivity. Furthermore, the PK101 P3 position harbors a methionine dioxide function, which mimics a post-translationally oxidized methionine residue and forms a critical hydrogen bond to the backbone amide of Gly219 of HNE. Gly219 resides in a Gly–Gly motif that is unique to HNE, yet compulsory for this interaction. Consequently, this feature enables HNE to accommodate substrates that have undergone methionine oxidation, which constitutes a hallmark post-translational modification of neutrophil signaling.« less

  17. The elastase-PK101 structure: Mechanism of an ultrasensitive activity-based probe revealed

    SciTech Connect

    Lechtenberg, Bernhard C.; Robinson, Howard R.; Kasperkiewicz, Paulina; Drag, Marcin; Riedl, Stefan J.

    2015-01-22

    Human neutrophil elastase (HNE) plays a central role in neutrophil host defense, but its broad specificity makes HNE a difficult target for both inhibitor and probe development. Recently, we identified the unnatural amino acid containing activity-based probe PK101, which exhibits astounding sensitivity and selectivity for HNE, yet completely lacks mechanistic explanation for its unique characteristics. Here, we present the crystal structure of the HNE-PK101 complex which not only reveals the basis for PK101 ultrasensitivity but also uncovers so far unrecognized HNE features. Strikingly, the Nle(O-Bzl) function in the P4 position of PK101 reveals and leverages an “exo-pocket” on HNE as a critical factor for selectivity. Furthermore, the PK101 P3 position harbors a methionine dioxide function, which mimics a post-translationally oxidized methionine residue and forms a critical hydrogen bond to the backbone amide of Gly219 of HNE. Gly219 resides in a Gly–Gly motif that is unique to HNE, yet compulsory for this interaction. Consequently, this feature enables HNE to accommodate substrates that have undergone methionine oxidation, which constitutes a hallmark post-translational modification of neutrophil signaling.

  18. Spatially Defined EGF Receptor Activation Reveals an F-Actin-Dependent Phospho-Erk Signaling Complex

    PubMed Central

    Singhai, Amit; Wakefield, Devin L.; Bryant, Kirsten L.; Hammes, Stephen R.; Holowka, David; Baird, Barbara

    2014-01-01

    We investigated the association of signaling proteins with epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptors (EGFR) using biotinylated EGF bound to streptavidin that is covalently coupled in an ordered array of micron-sized features on silicon surfaces. Using NIH-3T3 cells stably expressing EGFR, we observe concentration of fluorescently labeled receptors and stimulated tyrosine phosphorylation that are spatially confined to the regions of immobilized EGF and quantified by cross-correlation analysis. We observe recruitment of phosphorylated paxillin to activated EGFR at these patterned features, as well as β1-containing integrins that preferentially localize to more peripheral EGF features, as quantified by radial fluorescence analysis. In addition, we detect recruitment of EGFP-Ras, MEK, and phosphorylated Erk to patterned EGF in a process that depends on F-actin and phosphoinositides. These studies reveal and quantify the coformation of multiprotein EGFR signaling complexes at the plasma membrane in response to micropatterned growth factors. PMID:25468343

  19. Structures of two superoxide dismutases from Bacillus anthracis reveal a novel active centre

    SciTech Connect

    Boucher, Ian W.; Kalliomaa, Anne K.; Levdikov, Vladimir M.; Blagova, Elena V.; Fogg, Mark J.; Brannigan, James A. Wilson, Keith S.; Wilkinson, Anthony J.

    2005-07-01

    The crystal structures of two manganese superoxide dismutases from B. anthracis were solved by X-ray crystallography using molecular replacement. The BA4499 and BA5696 genes of Bacillus anthracis encode proteins homologous to manganese superoxide dismutase, suggesting that this organism has an expanded repertoire of antioxidant proteins. Differences in metal specificity and quaternary structure between the dismutases of prokaryotes and higher eukaryotes may be exploited in the development of therapeutic antibacterial compounds. Here, the crystal structure of two Mn superoxide dismutases from B. anthracis solved to high resolution are reported. Comparison of their structures reveals that a highly conserved residue near the active centre is substituted in one of the proteins and that this is a characteristic feature of superoxide dismutases from the B. cereus/B. anthracis/B. thuringiensis group of organisms.

  20. Single-molecule spectroscopy reveals how calmodulin activates NO synthase by controlling its conformational fluctuation dynamics

    PubMed Central

    He, Yufan; Haque, Mohammad Mahfuzul; Stuehr, Dennis J.; Lu, H. Peter

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms that regulate the nitric oxide synthase enzymes (NOS) are of interest in biology and medicine. Although NOS catalysis relies on domain motions, and is activated by calmodulin binding, the relationships are unclear. We used single-molecule fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) spectroscopy to elucidate the conformational states distribution and associated conformational fluctuation dynamics of the two electron transfer domains in a FRET dye-labeled neuronal NOS reductase domain, and to understand how calmodulin affects the dynamics to regulate catalysis. We found that calmodulin alters NOS conformational behaviors in several ways: It changes the distance distribution between the NOS domains, shortens the lifetimes of the individual conformational states, and instills conformational discipline by greatly narrowing the distributions of the conformational states and fluctuation rates. This information was specifically obtainable only by single-molecule spectroscopic measurements, and reveals how calmodulin promotes catalysis by shaping the physical and temporal conformational behaviors of NOS. PMID:26311846

  1. Analysis of miRNA market trends reveals hotspots of research activity.

    PubMed

    Oosta, Gary; Razvi, Enal

    2012-04-01

    We have conducted an analysis of the miRNA research marketplace by evaluating the publication trends in the field. In this article, we present the results of our analysis which reveals that hotspots exist in terms of research activities in the miRNA space--these hotspots illustrate the areas in the miRNA research space where specific miRNAs have been extensively studied, and other areas that represent new territory. We frame these data into the context of areas of opportunity for miRNA content harvest versus segments of opportunity for the development of research tools. Also presented in this article are the primary market data from online surveys we have performed with researchers involved in miRNA research around the world. Taken together, these data frame the current state of the miRNA marketplace and provide niches of opportunity for new entrants into this space.

  2. Structures of Cas9 endonucleases reveal RNA-mediated conformational activation.

    PubMed

    Jinek, Martin; Jiang, Fuguo; Taylor, David W; Sternberg, Samuel H; Kaya, Emine; Ma, Enbo; Anders, Carolin; Hauer, Michael; Zhou, Kaihong; Lin, Steven; Kaplan, Matias; Iavarone, Anthony T; Charpentier, Emmanuelle; Nogales, Eva; Doudna, Jennifer A

    2014-03-14

    Type II CRISPR (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats)-Cas (CRISPR-associated) systems use an RNA-guided DNA endonuclease, Cas9, to generate double-strand breaks in invasive DNA during an adaptive bacterial immune response. Cas9 has been harnessed as a powerful tool for genome editing and gene regulation in many eukaryotic organisms. We report 2.6 and 2.2 angstrom resolution crystal structures of two major Cas9 enzyme subtypes, revealing the structural core shared by all Cas9 family members. The architectures of Cas9 enzymes define nucleic acid binding clefts, and single-particle electron microscopy reconstructions show that the two structural lobes harboring these clefts undergo guide RNA-induced reorientation to form a central channel where DNA substrates are bound. The observation that extensive structural rearrangements occur before target DNA duplex binding implicates guide RNA loading as a key step in Cas9 activation.

  3. Shuttle active thermal control system development testing. Volume 6: Water ejector plume tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcginnis, F. K.; Summerhays, R. M.

    1973-01-01

    Results are given of vacuum testing of nozzles designed to eject water vapor away from the space shuttle to prevent contamination of the spacecraft surfaces and payload. The water vapor is generated by an active cooling system which evaporates excess fuel cell water to supplement a modular radiator system (MRS). The complete heat rejection system including the MRS, flash evaporator or sublimator and nozzle were first tested to demonstrate the system operational characteristics. The plume tests were performed in two phases and the objectives of this test series were: (1) to determine the effectiveness of a supersonic nozzle and a plugged nozzle in minimizing impingement upon the spacecraft of water vapor exhausted by an active device (flash evaporator or sublimator); and (2) to obtain basic data on the flow fields of exhaust plumes generated by these active devices, both with and without nozzles installed.

  4. The structure of Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase reveals a novel redox switch that regulates its activities

    SciTech Connect

    Chitnumsub, Penchit Ittarat, Wanwipa; Jaruwat, Aritsara; Noytanom, Krittikar; Amornwatcharapong, Watcharee; Pornthanakasem, Wichai; Chaiyen, Pimchai; Yuthavong, Yongyuth; Leartsakulpanich, Ubolsree

    2014-06-01

    The crystal structure of P. falciparum SHMT revealed snapshots of an intriguing disulfide/sulfhydryl switch controlling the functional activity. Plasmodium falciparum serine hydroxymethyltransferase (PfSHMT), an enzyme in the dTMP synthesis cycle, is an antimalarial target because inhibition of its expression or function has been shown to be lethal to the parasite. As the wild-type enzyme could not be crystallized, protein engineering of residues on the surface was carried out. The surface-engineered mutant PfSHMT-F292E was successfully crystallized and its structure was determined at 3 Å resolution. The PfSHMT-F292E structure is a good representation of PfSHMT as this variant revealed biochemical properties similar to those of the wild type. Although the overall structure of PfSHMT is similar to those of other SHMTs, unique features including the presence of two loops and a distinctive cysteine pair formed by Cys125 and Cys364 in the tetrahydrofolate (THF) substrate binding pocket were identified. These structural characteristics have never been reported in other SHMTs. Biochemical characterization and mutation analysis of these two residues confirm that they act as a disulfide/sulfhydryl switch to regulate the THF-dependent catalytic function of the enzyme. This redox switch is not present in the human enzyme, in which the cysteine pair is absent. The data reported here can be further exploited as a new strategy to specifically disrupt the activity of the parasite enzyme without interfering with the function of the human enzyme.

  5. Methanogenic activity tests by Infrared Tunable Diode Laser Absorption Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Martinez-Cruz, Karla; Sepulveda-Jauregui, Armando; Escobar-Orozco, Nayeli; Thalasso, Frederic

    2012-10-01

    Methanogenic activity (MA) tests are commonly carried out to estimate the capability of anaerobic biomass to treat effluents, to evaluate anaerobic activity in bioreactors or natural ecosystems, or to quantify inhibitory effects on methanogenic activity. These activity tests are usually based on the measurement of the volume of biogas produced by volumetric, pressure increase or gas chromatography (GC) methods. In this study, we present an alternative method for non-invasive measurement of methane produced during activity tests in closed vials, based on Infrared Tunable Diode Laser Absorption Spectroscopy (MA-TDLAS). This new method was tested during model acetoclastic and hydrogenotrophic methanogenic activity tests and was compared to a more traditional method based on gas chromatography. From the results obtained, the CH(4) detection limit of the method was estimated to 60 ppm and the minimum measurable methane production rate was estimated to 1.09(.)10(-3) mg l(-1) h(-1), which is below CH(4) production rate usually reported in both anaerobic reactors and natural ecosystems. Additionally to sensitivity, the method has several potential interests compared to more traditional methods among which short measurements time allowing the measurement of a large number of MA test vials, non-invasive measurements avoiding leakage or external interferences and similar cost to GC based methods. It is concluded that MA-TDLAS is a promising method that could be of interest not only in the field of anaerobic digestion but also, in the field of environmental ecology where CH(4) production rates are usually very low.

  6. Interspecies cathelicidin comparison reveals divergence in antimicrobial activity, TLR modulation, chemokine induction and regulation of phagocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Coorens, Maarten; Scheenstra, Maaike R.; Veldhuizen, Edwin J. A.; Haagsman, Henk P.

    2017-01-01

    Cathelicidins are short cationic peptides initially described as antimicrobial peptides, which can also modulate the immune system. Because most findings have been described in the context of human LL-37 or murine CRAMP, or have been investigated under varying conditions, it is unclear which functions are cathelicidin specific and which functions are general cathelicidin properties. This study compares 12 cathelicidins from 6 species under standardized conditions to better understand the conservation of cathelicidin functions. Most tested cathelicidins had strong antimicrobial activity against E. coli and/or MRSA. Interestingly, while more physiological culture conditions limit the antimicrobial activity of almost all cathelicidins against E. coli, activity against MRSA is enhanced. Seven out of 12 cathelicidins were able to neutralize LPS and another 7 cathelicidins were able to neutralize LTA; however, there was no correlation found with LPS neutralization. In contrast, only 4 cathelicidins enhanced DNA-induced TLR9 activation. In conclusion, these results provide new insight in the functional differences of cathelicidins both within and between species. In addition, these results underline the importance not to generalize cathelicidin functions and indicates that caution should be taken in extrapolating results from LL-37- or CRAMP-related studies to other animal settings. PMID:28102367

  7. Bootstrap testing for cross-correlation under low firing activity.

    PubMed

    González-Montoro, Aldana M; Cao, Ricardo; Espinosa, Nelson; Cudeiro, Javier; Mariño, Jorge

    2015-06-01

    A new cross-correlation synchrony index for neural activity is proposed. The index is based on the integration of the kernel estimation of the cross-correlation function. It is used to test for the dynamic synchronization levels of spontaneous neural activity under two induced brain states: sleep-like and awake-like. Two bootstrap resampling plans are proposed to approximate the distribution of the test statistics. The results of the first bootstrap method indicate that it is useful to discern significant differences in the synchronization dynamics of brain states characterized by a neural activity with low firing rate. The second bootstrap method is useful to unveil subtle differences in the synchronization levels of the awake-like state, depending on the activation pathway.

  8. Automated Activation and Deactivation of a System Under Test

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Poff, Mark A.

    2006-01-01

    The MPLM Automated Activation/Deactivation application (MPLM means Multi-Purpose Logistic Module) was created with a three-fold purpose in mind: 1. To reduce the possibility of human error in issuing commands to, or interpreting telemetry from, the MPLM power, computer, and environmental control systems; 2. To reduce the amount of test time required for the repetitive activation/deactivation processes; and 3. To reduce the number of on-console personnel required for activation/ deactivation. All of these have been demonstrated with the release of the software. While some degree of automated end-item commanding had previously been performed for space-station hardware in the test environment, none approached the functionality and flexibility of this application. For MPLM activation, it provides mouse-click selection of the hardware complement to be activated, activates the desired hardware and verifies proper feedbacks, and alerts the user when telemetry indicates an error condition or manual intervention is required. For MPLM deactivation, the product senses which end items are active and deactivates them in the proper sequence. For historical purposes, an on-line log is maintained of commands issued and telemetry points monitored. The benefits of the MPLM Automated Activation/ Deactivation application were demonstrated with its first use in December 2002, when it flawlessly performed MPLM activation in 8 minutes (versus as much as 2.4 hours for previous manual activations), and performed MPLM deactivation in 3 minutes (versus 66 minutes for previous manual deactivations). The number of test team members required has dropped from eight to four, and in actuality the software can be operated by a sole (knowledgeable) system engineer.

  9. Charpy impact test results for low-activation ferritic alloys

    SciTech Connect

    Cannon, N.S.; Hu, W.L.; Gelles, D.S.

    1987-05-01

    The objective of this work is to evaluate the shift of the ductile to brittle transition temperature (DBTT) and the reduction of the upper shelf energy (USE) due to neutron irradiation of low activation ferritic alloys. Six low activation ferritic alloys have been tested following irradiation at 365/sup 0/C to 10 dpa and compared with control specimens in order to assess the effect of irradiation on Charpy impact properties.

  10. Testing a Theoretical Model of Immigration Transition and Physical Activity.

    PubMed

    Chang, Sun Ju; Im, Eun-Ok

    2015-01-01

    The purposes of the study were to develop a theoretical model to explain the relationships between immigration transition and midlife women's physical activity and test the relationships among the major variables of the model. A theoretical model, which was developed based on transitions theory and the midlife women's attitudes toward physical activity theory, consists of 4 major variables, including length of stay in the United States, country of birth, level of acculturation, and midlife women's physical activity. To test the theoretical model, a secondary analysis with data from 127 Hispanic women and 123 non-Hispanic (NH) Asian women in a national Internet study was used. Among the major variables of the model, length of stay in the United States was negatively associated with physical activity in Hispanic women. Level of acculturation in NH Asian women was positively correlated with women's physical activity. Country of birth and level of acculturation were significant factors that influenced physical activity in both Hispanic and NH Asian women. The findings support the theoretical model that was developed to examine relationships between immigration transition and physical activity; it shows that immigration transition can play an essential role in influencing health behaviors of immigrant populations in the United States. The NH theoretical model can be widely used in nursing practice and research that focus on immigrant women and their health behaviors. Health care providers need to consider the influences of immigration transition to promote immigrant women's physical activity.

  11. Effects of physical activity on exercise tests and respiratory function

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Y; Macera, C; Addy, C; Sy, F; Wieland, D; Blair, S

    2003-01-01

    Background: Exercise is an important component of pulmonary rehabilitation for patients with chronic lung disease. Objective: To explore the role of physical activity in maintaining cardiac and respiratory function in healthy people. Methods: Cardiorespiratory fitness was measured by a maximal treadmill test (MTT), and respiratory function was tested by spirometry. The cross sectional study included data from 24 536 healthy persons who were examined at the Cooper Clinic between 1971 and 1995; the longitudinal study included data from 5707 healthy persons who had an initial visit between 1971 and 1995 and a subsequent visit during the next five years. All participants were aged 25–55 years and completed a cardiorespiratory test and a medical questionnaire. Results: In the cross sectional study, after controlling for covariates, being active and not being a recent smoker were associated with better cardiorespiratory fitness and respiratory function in both men and women. In the follow up study, persons who remained or became active had better MTT than persons who remained or became sedentary. Men who remained active had higher forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and forced vital capacity (FVC) than the other groups. Smoking was related to lower cardiorespiratory fitness and respiratory function. Conclusions: Physical activity and non-smoking or smoking cessation is associated with maintenance of cardiorespiratory fitness. Change in physical activity habits is associated with change in cardiorespiratory fitness, but respiratory function contributed little to this association during a five year follow up. PMID:14665592

  12. Spacecraft Environmental Testing SMAP (Soil, Moisture, Active, Passive)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fields, Keith

    2014-01-01

    Testing a complete full up spacecraft to verify it will survive the environment, in which it will be exposed to during its mission, is a formidable task in itself. However, the ''test like you fly'' philosophy sometimes gets compromised because of cost, design and or time. This paper describes the thermal-vacuum and mass properties testing of the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) earth orbiting satellite. SMAP will provide global observations of soil moisture and freeze/thaw state (the hydrosphere state). SMAP hydrosphere state measurements will be used to enhance understanding of processes that link the water, energy, and carbon cycles, and to extend the capabilities of weather and climate prediction models. It will explain the problems encountered, and the solutions developed, which minimized the risk typically associated with such an arduous process. Also discussed, the future of testing on expensive long lead-time spacecraft. Will we ever reach the ''build and shoot" scenario with minimal or no verification testing?

  13. Voltage-Sensitive Dyes And Imaging Techniques Reveal New Patterns Of Electrical Activity In Heart Cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salama, Guy

    1988-04-01

    Voltage-sensitive dyes bind to the plasms membrane of excitable cells (ie., muscle or nerve cells) and exhibit fluorescence and/or absorption changes that vary linearly with changes in transmembrane electrical potential. These potentiometric optical probes can be used to measure local changes in transmembrane potential by monitoring optical signals from dye molecules bound to the surface membrane. Consequently, when excitable cells are stained with such a dye and are stimulated to fire an electrical impulse (ie., an action potential (AP)), the changes in dye fluorescence have the characteristic shape and time course of APs recorded with an intracellular micro-electrode. Potentiometric dyes in conjuction with imaging techniques can now be used to visualize complex patterns and propagation of electrical activity. With photodiode arrays on video imaging techniques, patterns of biological electrical activity can be obtained with high temporal and spatial resolution which could not be obtained by conventional micro-electrodes. These methods reveal new details and offer powerful approaches to study fundamental problem in cardiac electrophysiology, communication in nerve networks, and the organization of cortical neurons.

  14. Synthesis and folding of a mirror-image enzyme reveals ambidextrous chaperone activity

    PubMed Central

    Weinstock, Matthew T.; Jacobsen, Michael T.; Kay, Michael S.

    2014-01-01

    Mirror-image proteins (composed of d-amino acids) are promising therapeutic agents and drug discovery tools, but as synthesis of larger d-proteins becomes feasible, a major anticipated challenge is the folding of these proteins into their active conformations. In vivo, many large and/or complex proteins require chaperones like GroEL/ES to prevent misfolding and produce functional protein. The ability of chaperones to fold d-proteins is unknown. Here we examine the ability of GroEL/ES to fold a synthetic d-protein. We report the total chemical synthesis of a 312-residue GroEL/ES-dependent protein, DapA, in both l- and d-chiralities, the longest fully synthetic proteins yet reported. Impressively, GroEL/ES folds both l- and d-DapA. This work extends the limits of chemical protein synthesis, reveals ambidextrous GroEL/ES folding activity, and provides a valuable tool to fold d-proteins for drug development and mirror-image synthetic biology applications. PMID:25071217

  15. Quantitative proteomics reveals the induction of mitophagy in tumor necrosis factor-α-activated (TNFα) macrophages.

    PubMed

    Bell, Christina; English, Luc; Boulais, Jonathan; Chemali, Magali; Caron-Lizotte, Olivier; Desjardins, Michel; Thibault, Pierre

    2013-09-01

    Macrophages play an important role in innate and adaptive immunity as professional phagocytes capable of internalizing and degrading pathogens to derive antigens for presentation to T cells. They also produce pro-inflammatory cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) that mediate local and systemic responses and direct the development of adaptive immunity. The present work describes the use of label-free quantitative proteomics to profile the dynamic changes of proteins from resting and TNF-α-activated mouse macrophages. These analyses revealed that TNF-α activation of macrophages led to the down-regulation of mitochondrial proteins and the differential regulation of several proteins involved in vesicle trafficking and immune response. Importantly, we found that the down-regulation of mitochondria proteins occurred through mitophagy and was specific to TNF-α, as other cytokines such as IL-1β and IFN-γ had no effect on mitochondria degradation. Furthermore, using a novel antigen presentation system, we observed that the induction of mitophagy by TNF-α enabled the processing and presentation of mitochondrial antigens at the cell surface by MHC class I molecules. These findings highlight an unsuspected role of TNF-α in mitophagy and expanded our understanding of the mechanisms responsible for MHC presentation of self-antigens.

  16. Activation of nanoscale allosteric protein domain motion revealed by neutron spin echo spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bu, Zimei; Farago, Bela; Callaway, David

    2012-02-01

    NHERF1 is a multi-domain scaffolding protein that assembles the signaling complexes, and regulates the cell surface expression and endocytic recycling of a variety of membrane proteins. The ability of the two PDZ domains in NHERF1 to assemble protein complexes is allosterically modulated by a membrane-cytoskeleton linker protein ezrin, whose binding site is located as far as 110 angstroms away from the PDZ domains. Here, using neutron spin echo (NSE) spectroscopy, selective deuterium labeling, and theoretical analyses, we reveal the activation of interdomain motion in NHERF1 on nanometer length scales and on sub-microsecond time scales upon forming a complex with ezrin. We show that a much simplified coarse-grained model is sufficient to describe inter-domain motion of a multi-domain protein or protein complex. We expect that future NSE experiments will benefit by exploiting our approach of selective deuteration to resolve the specific domain motions of interest from a plethora of global translational and rotational motions. The results demonstrate that propagation of allosteric signals to distal sites involves the activation of long-range coupled domain motions on submicrosecond time scales, and that these coupled motions can be distinguished and characterized by NSE.

  17. Activity-Based Protein Profiling Reveals Broad Reactivity of the Nerve Agent Sarin.

    PubMed

    Tuin, Adriaan W; Mol, Marijke A E; van den Berg, Roland M; Fidder, A; van der Marel, Gijs A; Overkleeft, Herman S; Noort, Daan

    2009-04-01

    Elucidation of noncholinesterase protein targets of organophosphates, and nerve agents in particular, may reveal additional mechanisms for their high toxicity as well as clues for novel therapeutic approaches toward intoxications with these agents. Within this framework, we here describe the synthesis of the activity-based probe 3, which contains a phosphonofluoridate moiety, a P-Me moiety, and a biotinylated O-alkyl group, and its use in activity-based protein profiling with two relevant biological samples, that is, rhesus monkey liver and cultured human A549 lung cells. In this way, we have unearthed eight serine hydrolases (fatty acid synthase, acylpeptide hydrolase, dipeptidyl peptidase 9, prolyl oligopeptidase, carboxylesterase, long-chain acyl coenzyme A thioesterase, PAF acetylhydrolase 1b, and esterase D/S-formyl glutathione hydrolase) as targets that are modified by the nerve agent sarin. It is also shown that the newly developed probe 3 might find its way into the development of alternative, less laborious purification protocols for human butyrylcholinesterase, a potent bioscavenger currently under clinical investigation as a prophylactic/therapeutic for nerve agent intoxications.

  18. Inner workings of thrombolites: spatial gradients of metabolic activity as revealed by metatranscriptome profiling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mobberley, J. M.; Khodadad, C. L. M.; Visscher, P. T.; Reid, R. P.; Hagan, P.; Foster, J. S.

    2015-07-01

    Microbialites are sedimentary deposits formed by the metabolic interactions of microbes and their environment. These lithifying microbial communities represent one of the oldest ecosystems on Earth, yet the molecular mechanisms underlying the function of these communities are poorly understood. In this study, we used comparative metagenomic and metatranscriptomic analyses to characterize the spatial organization of the thrombolites of Highborne Cay, The Bahamas, an actively forming microbialite system. At midday, there were differences in gene expression throughout the spatial profile of the thrombolitic mat with a high abundance of transcripts encoding genes required for photosynthesis, nitrogen fixation and exopolymeric substance production in the upper three mm of the mat. Transcripts associated with denitrification and sulfate reduction were in low abundance throughout the depth profile, suggesting these metabolisms were less active during midday. Comparative metagenomics of the Bahamian thrombolites with other known microbialite ecosystems from across the globe revealed that, despite many shared core pathways, the thrombolites represented genetically distinct communities. This study represents the first time the metatranscriptome of living microbialite has been characterized and offers a new molecular perspective on those microbial metabolisms, and their underlying genetic pathways, that influence the mechanisms of carbonate precipitation in lithifying microbial mat ecosystems.

  19. Abnormal Spontaneous Brain Activity in Women with Premenstrual Syndrome Revealed by Regional Homogeneity

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Hai; Pang, Yong; Liu, Peng; Liu, Huimei; Duan, Gaoxiong; Liu, Yanfei; Tang, Lijun; Tao, Jien; Wen, Danhong; Li, Shasha; Liang, Lingyan; Deng, Demao

    2017-01-01

    Background: Previous studies have revealed that the etiologies of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) refer to menstrual cycle related brain changes. However, its intrinsic neural mechanism is still unclear. The aim of the present study was to assess abnormal spontaneous brain activity and to explicate the intricate neural mechanism of PMS using resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging (RS-fMRI). Materials and Methods: The data of 20 PMS patients (PMS group) and 21 healthy controls (HC group) were analyzed by regional homogeneity (ReHo) method during the late luteal phase of menstrual cycle. In addition, all the participants were asked to complete a daily record of severity of problems (DRSP) questionnaire. Results: Compared with HC group, the results showed that PMS group had increased ReHo mainly in the bilateral precuneus, left inferior temporal cortex (ITC), right inferior frontal cortex (IFC) and left middle frontal cortex (MFC) and decreased ReHo in the right anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) at the luteal phase. Moreover, the PMS group had higher DRSP scores, and the DRSP scores positively correlated with ReHo in left MFC and negatively correlated with ReHo in the right ACC. Conclusion: Our results suggest that abnormal spontaneous brain activity is found in PMS patients and the severity of symptom is specifically related to the left MFC and right ACC. The present findings may be beneficial to explicate the intricate neural mechanism of PMS. PMID:28243196

  20. Inner workings of thrombolites: spatial gradients of metabolic activity as revealed by metatranscriptome profiling

    PubMed Central

    Mobberley, J. M.; Khodadad, C. L. M.; Visscher, P. T.; Reid, R. P.; Hagan, P.; Foster, J. S.

    2015-01-01

    Microbialites are sedimentary deposits formed by the metabolic interactions of microbes and their environment. These lithifying microbial communities represent one of the oldest ecosystems on Earth, yet the molecular mechanisms underlying the function of these communities are poorly understood. In this study, we used comparative metagenomic and metatranscriptomic analyses to characterize the spatial organization of the thrombolites of Highborne Cay, The Bahamas, an actively forming microbialite system. At midday, there were differences in gene expression throughout the spatial profile of the thrombolitic mat with a high abundance of transcripts encoding genes required for photosynthesis, nitrogen fixation and exopolymeric substance production in the upper three mm of the mat. Transcripts associated with denitrification and sulfate reduction were in low abundance throughout the depth profile, suggesting these metabolisms were less active during midday. Comparative metagenomics of the Bahamian thrombolites with other known microbialite ecosystems from across the globe revealed that, despite many shared core pathways, the thrombolites represented genetically distinct communities. This study represents the first time the metatranscriptome of living microbialite has been characterized and offers a new molecular perspective on those microbial metabolisms, and their underlying genetic pathways, that influence the mechanisms of carbonate precipitation in lithifying microbial mat ecosystems. PMID:26213359

  1. Structure analysis reveals the flexibility of the ADAMTS-5 active site

    SciTech Connect

    Shieh, Huey-Sheng; Tomasselli, Alfredo G.; Mathis, Karl J.; Schnute, Mark E.; Woodard, Scott S.; Caspers, Nicole; Williams, Jennifer M.; Kiefer, James R.; Munie, Grace; Wittwer, Arthur; Malfait, Anne-Marie; Tortorella, Micky D.

    2012-03-02

    A ((1S,2R)-2-hydroxy-2,3-dihydro-1H-inden-1-yl) succinamide derivative (here referred to as Compound 12) shows significant activity toward many matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), including MMP-2, MMP-8, MMP-9, and MMP-13. Modeling studies had predicted that this compound would not bind to ADAMTS-5 (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs-5) due to its shallow S1' pocket. However, inhibition analysis revealed it to be a nanomolar inhibitor of both ADAMTS-4 and -5. The observed inconsistency was explained by analysis of crystallographic structures, which showed that Compound 12 in complex with the catalytic domain of ADAMTS-5 (cataTS5) exhibits an unusual conformation in the S1' pocket of the protein. This first demonstration that cataTS5 can undergo an induced conformational change in its active site pocket by a molecule like Compound 12 should enable the design of new aggrecanase inhibitors with better potency and selectivity profiles.

  2. Recent tectonic activity on Mercury revealed by small thrust fault scarps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watters, Thomas R.; Daud, Katie; Banks, Maria E.; Selvans, Michelle M.; Chapman, Clark R.; Ernst, Carolyn M.

    2016-10-01

    Large tectonic landforms on the surface of Mercury, consistent with significant contraction of the planet, were revealed by the flybys of Mariner 10 in the mid-1970s. The MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) mission confirmed that the planet's past 4 billion years of tectonic history have been dominated by contraction expressed by lobate fault scarps that are hundreds of kilometres long. Here we report the discovery of small thrust fault scarps in images from the low-altitude campaign at the end of the MESSENGER mission that are orders of magnitude smaller than the large-scale lobate scarps. These small scarps have tens of metres of relief, are only kilometres in length and are comparable in scale to small young scarps on the Moon. Their small-scale, pristine appearance, crosscutting of impact craters and association with small graben all indicate an age of less than 50 Myr. We propose that these scarps are the smallest members of a continuum in scale of thrust fault scarps on Mercury. The young age of the small scarps, along with evidence for recent activity on large-scale scarps, suggests that Mercury is tectonically active today and implies a prolonged slow cooling of the planet's interior.

  3. Interspecies insertion polymorphism analysis reveals recent activity of transposable elements in extant coelacanths.

    PubMed

    Naville, Magali; Chalopin, Domitille; Volff, Jean-Nicolas

    2014-01-01

    Coelacanths are lobe-finned fish represented by two extant species, Latimeria chalumnae in South Africa and Comoros and L. menadoensis in Indonesia. Due to their intermediate phylogenetic position between ray-finned fish and tetrapods in the vertebrate lineage, they are of great interest from an evolutionary point of view. In addition, extant specimens look similar to 300 million-year-old fossils; because of their apparent slowly evolving morphology, coelacanths have been often described as « living fossils ». As an underlying cause of such a morphological stasis, several authors have proposed a slow evolution of the coelacanth genome. Accordingly, sequencing of the L. chalumnae genome has revealed a globally low substitution rate for protein-coding regions compared to other vertebrates. However, genome and gene evolution can also be influenced by transposable elements, which form a major and dynamic part of vertebrate genomes through their ability to move, duplicate and recombine. In this work, we have searched for evidence of transposition activity in coelacanth genomes through the comparative analysis of orthologous genomic regions from both Latimeria species. Comparison of 5.7 Mb (0.2%) of the L. chalumnae genome with orthologous Bacterial Artificial Chromosome clones from L. menadoensis allowed the identification of 27 species-specific transposable element insertions, with a strong relative contribution of CR1 non-LTR retrotransposons. Species-specific homologous recombination between the long terminal repeats of a new coelacanth endogenous retrovirus was also detected. Our analysis suggests that transposon activity is responsible for at least 0.6% of genome divergence between both Latimeria species. Taken together, this study demonstrates that coelacanth genomes are not evolutionary inert: they contain recently active transposable elements, which have significantly contributed to post-speciation genome divergence in Latimeria.

  4. Angiogenesis Interactome and Time Course Microarray Data Reveal the Distinct Activation Patterns in Endothelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Chu, Liang-Hui; Lee, Esak; Bader, Joel S.; Popel, Aleksander S.

    2014-01-01

    Angiogenesis involves stimulation of endothelial cells (EC) by various cytokines and growth factors, but the signaling mechanisms are not completely understood. Combining dynamic gene expression time-course data for stimulated EC with protein-protein interactions associated with angiogenesis (the “angiome”) could reveal how different stimuli result in different patterns of network activation and could implicate signaling intermediates as points for control or intervention. We constructed the protein-protein interaction networks of positive and negative regulation of angiogenesis comprising 367 and 245 proteins, respectively. We used five published gene expression datasets derived from in vitro assays using different types of blood endothelial cells stimulated by VEGFA (vascular endothelial growth factor A). We used the Short Time-series Expression Miner (STEM) to identify significant temporal gene expression profiles. The statistically significant patterns between 2D fibronectin and 3D type I collagen substrates for telomerase-immortalized EC (TIME) show that different substrates could influence the temporal gene activation patterns in the same cell line. We investigated the different activation patterns among 18 transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptors, and experimentally measured the protein level of the tyrosine-kinase receptors VEGFR1, VEGFR2 and VEGFR3 in human umbilical vein EC (HUVEC) and human microvascular EC (MEC). The results show that VEGFR1–VEGFR2 levels are more closely coupled than VEGFR1–VEGFR3 or VEGFR2–VEGFR3 in HUVEC and MEC. This computational methodology can be extended to investigate other molecules or biological processes such as cell cycle. PMID:25329517

  5. Glycan structure of Gc Protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor as revealed by mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Borges, Chad R; Rehder, Douglas S

    2016-09-15

    Disagreement exists regarding the O-glycan structure attached to human vitamin D binding protein (DBP). Previously reported evidence indicated that the O-glycan of the Gc1S allele product is the linear core 1 NeuNAc-Gal-GalNAc-Thr trisaccharide. Here, glycan structural evidence is provided from glycan linkage analysis and over 30 serial glycosidase-digestion experiments which were followed by analysis of the intact protein by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). Results demonstrate that the O-glycan from the Gc1F protein is the same linear trisaccharide found on the Gc1S protein and that the hexose residue is galactose. In addition, the putative anti-cancer derivative of DBP known as Gc Protein-derived Macrophage Activating Factor (GcMAF, which is formed by the combined action of β-galactosidase and neuraminidase upon DBP) was analyzed intact by ESI-MS, revealing that the activating E. coli β-galactosidase cleaves nothing from the protein-leaving the glycan structure of active GcMAF as a Gal-GalNAc-Thr disaccharide, regardless of the order in which β-galactosidase and neuraminidase are applied. Moreover, glycosidase digestion results show that α-N-Acetylgalactosamindase (nagalase) lacks endoglycosidic function and only cleaves the DBP O-glycan once it has been trimmed down to a GalNAc-Thr monosaccharide-precluding the possibility of this enzyme removing the O-glycan trisaccharide from cancer-patient DBP in vivo.

  6. Characterization of the biocontrol activity of pseudomonas fluorescens strain X reveals novel genes regulated by glucose.

    PubMed

    Kremmydas, Gerasimos F; Tampakaki, Anastasia P; Georgakopoulos, Dimitrios G

    2013-01-01

    Pseudomonas fluorescens strain X, a bacterial isolate from the rhizosphere of bean seedlings, has the ability to suppress damping-off caused by the oomycete Pythium ultimum. To determine the genes controlling the biocontrol activity of strain X, transposon mutagenesis, sequencing and complementation was performed. Results indicate that, biocontrol ability of this isolate is attributed to gcd gene encoding glucose dehydrogenase, genes encoding its co-enzyme pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ), and two genes (sup5 and sup6) which seem to be organized in a putative operon. This operon (named supX) consists of five genes, one of which encodes a non-ribosomal peptide synthase. A unique binding site for a GntR-type transcriptional factor is localized upstream of the supX putative operon. Synteny comparison of the genes in supX revealed that they are common in the genus Pseudomonas, but with a low degree of similarity. supX shows high similarity only to the mangotoxin operon of Ps. syringae pv. syringae UMAF0158. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis indicated that transcription of supX is strongly reduced in the gcd and PQQ-minus mutants of Ps. fluorescens strain X. On the contrary, transcription of supX in the wild type is enhanced by glucose and transcription levels that appear to be higher during the stationary phase. Gcd, which uses PQQ as a cofactor, catalyses the oxidation of glucose to gluconic acid, which controls the activity of the GntR family of transcriptional factors. The genes in the supX putative operon have not been implicated before in the biocontrol of plant pathogens by pseudomonads. They are involved in the biosynthesis of an antimicrobial compound by Ps. fluorescens strain X and their transcription is controlled by glucose, possibly through the activity of a GntR-type transcriptional factor binding upstream of this putative operon.

  7. Electrocorticography reveals the temporal dynamics of posterior parietal cortical activity during recognition memory decisions

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez, Alex; Hutchinson, J. Benjamin; Uncapher, Melina R.; Chen, Janice; LaRocque, Karen F.; Foster, Brett L.; Rangarajan, Vinitha; Parvizi, Josef; Wagner, Anthony D.

    2015-01-01

    Theories of the neurobiology of episodic memory predominantly focus on the contributions of medial temporal lobe structures, based on extensive lesion, electrophysiological, and imaging evidence. Against this backdrop, functional neuroimaging data have unexpectedly implicated left posterior parietal cortex (PPC) in episodic retrieval, revealing distinct activation patterns in PPC subregions as humans make memory-related decisions. To date, theorizing about the functional contributions of PPC has been hampered by the absence of information about the temporal dynamics of PPC activity as retrieval unfolds. Here, we leveraged electrocorticography to examine the temporal profile of high gamma power (HGP) in dorsal PPC subregions as participants made old/new recognition memory decisions. A double dissociation in memory-related HGP was observed, with activity in left intraparietal sulcus (IPS) and left superior parietal lobule (SPL) differing in time and sign for recognized old items (Hits) and correctly rejected novel items (CRs). Specifically, HGP in left IPS increased for Hits 300–700 ms poststimulus onset, and decayed to baseline ∼200 ms preresponse. By contrast, HGP in left SPL increased for CRs early after stimulus onset (200−300 ms) and late in the memory decision (from 700 ms to response). These memory-related effects were unique to left PPC, as they were not observed in right PPC. Finally, memory-related HGP in left IPS and SPL was sufficiently reliable to enable brain-based decoding of the participant’s memory state at the single-trial level, using multivariate pattern classification. Collectively, these data provide insights into left PPC temporal dynamics as humans make recognition memory decisions. PMID:26283375

  8. Activated carbon testing for the 200 area effluent treatment facility

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, R.N.

    1997-01-17

    This report documents pilot and laboratory scale testing of activated carbon for use in the 200 Area Effluent Treatment Facility peroxide decomposer columns. Recommendations are made concerning column operating conditions and hardware design, the optimum type of carbon for use in the plant, and possible further studies.

  9. Multitaxon activity profiling reveals differential microbial response to reduced seawater pH and oil pollution.

    PubMed

    Coelho, Francisco J R C; Cleary, Daniel F R; Costa, Rodrigo; Ferreira, Marina; Polónia, Ana R M; Silva, Artur M S; Simões, Mário M Q; Oliveira, Vanessa; Gomes, Newton C M

    2016-09-01

    There is growing concern that predicted changes to global ocean chemistry will interact with anthropogenic pollution to significantly alter marine microbial composition and function. However, knowledge of the compounding effects of climate change stressors and anthropogenic pollution is limited. Here, we used 16S and 18S rRNA (cDNA)-based activity profiling to investigate the differential responses of selected microbial taxa to ocean acidification and oil hydrocarbon contamination under controlled laboratory conditions. Our results revealed that a lower relative abundance of sulphate-reducing bacteria (Desulfosarcina/Desulfococcus clade) due to an adverse effect of seawater acidification and oil hydrocarbon contamination (reduced pH-oil treatment) may be coupled to changes in sediment archaeal communities. In particular, we observed a pronounced compositional shift and marked reduction in the prevalence of otherwise abundant operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to the archaeal Marine Benthic Group B and Marine Hydrothermal Vent Group (MHVG) in the reduced pH-oil treatment. Conversely, the abundance of several putative hydrocarbonoclastic fungal OTUs was higher in the reduced pH-oil treatment. Sediment hydrocarbon profiling, furthermore, revealed higher concentrations of several alkanes in the reduced pH-oil treatment, corroborating the functional implications of the structural changes to microbial community composition. Collectively, our results advance the understanding of the response of a complex microbial community to the interaction between reduced pH and anthropogenic pollution. In future acidified marine environments, oil hydrocarbon contamination may alter the typical mixotrophic and k-/r-strategist composition of surface sediment microbiomes towards a more heterotrophic state with lower doubling rates, thereby impairing the ability of the ecosystem to recover from acute oil contamination events.

  10. Metagenomics, metatranscriptomics and single cell genomics reveal functional response of active Oceanospirillales to Gulf oil spill

    SciTech Connect

    Mason, Olivia U.; Hazen, Terry C.; Borglin, Sharon; Chain, Patrick S. G.; Dubinsky, Eric A.; Fortney, Julian L.; Han, James; Holman, Hoi-Ying N.; Hultman, Jenni; Lamendella, Regina; Mackelprang, Rachel; Malfatti, Stephanie; Tom, Lauren M.; Tringe, Susannah G.; Woyke, Tanja; Zhou, Jizhong; Rubin, Edward M.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2012-06-12

    The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico resulted in a deep-sea hydrocarbon plume that caused a shift in the indigenous microbial community composition with unknown ecological consequences. Early in the spill history, a bloom of uncultured, thus uncharacterized, members of the Oceanospirillales was previously detected, but their role in oil disposition was unknown. Here our aim was to determine the functional role of the Oceanospirillales and other active members of the indigenous microbial community using deep sequencing of community DNA and RNA, as well as single-cell genomics. Shotgun metagenomic and metatranscriptomic sequencing revealed that genes for motility, chemotaxis and aliphatic hydrocarbon degradation were significantly enriched and expressed in the hydrocarbon plume samples compared with uncontaminated seawater collected from plume depth. In contrast, although genes coding for degradation of more recalcitrant compounds, such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, total xylenes and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, were identified in the metagenomes, they were expressed at low levels, or not at all based on analysis of the metatranscriptomes. Isolation and sequencing of two Oceanospirillales single cells revealed that both cells possessed genes coding for n-alkane and cycloalkane degradation. Specifically, the near-complete pathway for cyclohexane oxidation in the Oceanospirillales single cells was elucidated and supported by both metagenome and metatranscriptome data. The draft genome also included genes for chemotaxis, motility and nutrient acquisition strategies that were also identified in the metagenomes and metatranscriptomes. These data point towards a rapid response of members of the Oceanospirillales to aliphatic hydrocarbons in the deep sea.

  11. Active Trans-Plasma Membrane Water Cycling in Yeast Is Revealed by NMR

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yajie; Poirier-Quinot, Marie; Springer, Charles S.; Balschi, James A.

    2011-01-01

    Plasma membrane water transport is a crucial cellular phenomenon. Net water movement in response to an osmotic gradient changes cell volume. Steady-state exchange of water molecules, with no net flux or volume change, occurs by passive diffusion through the phospholipid bilayer and passage through membrane proteins. The hypothesis is tested that plasma membrane water exchange also correlates with ATP-driven membrane transport activity in yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Longitudinal 1H2O NMR relaxation time constant (T1) values were measured in yeast suspensions containing extracellular relaxation reagent. Two-site-exchange analysis quantified the reversible exchange kinetics as the mean intracellular water lifetime (τi), where τi−1 is the pseudo-first-order rate constant for water efflux. To modulate cellular ATP, yeast suspensions were bubbled with 95%O2/5%CO2 (O2) or 95%N2/5%CO2 (N2). ATP was high during O2, and τi−1 was 3.1 s−1 at 25°C. After changing to N2, ATP decreased and τi−1 was 1.8 s−1. The principal active yeast ion transport protein is the plasma membrane H+-ATPase. Studies using the H+-ATPase inhibitor ebselen or a yeast genetic strain with reduced H+-ATPase found reduced τi−1, notwithstanding high ATP. Steady-state water exchange correlates with H+-ATPase activity. At volume steady state, water is cycling across the plasma membrane in response to metabolic transport activity. PMID:22261073

  12. Context Matters: Multiple Novelty Tests Reveal Different Aspects of Shyness-Boldness in Farmed American Mink (Neovison vison).

    PubMed

    Noer, Christina Lehmkuhl; Needham, Esther Kjær; Wiese, Ann-Sophie; Balsby, Thorsten Johannes Skovbjerg; Dabelsteen, Torben

    2015-01-01

    Animal personality research is receiving increasing interest from related fields, such as evolutionary personality psychology. By merging the conceptual understanding of personality, the contributions to both fields of research may be enhanced. In this study, we investigate animal personality based on the definition of personality traits as underlying dispositional factors, which are not directly measurable, but which predispose individuals to react through different behavioural patterns. We investigated the shyness-boldness continuum reflected in the consistency of inter-individual variation in behavioural responses towards novelty in 47 farmed American mink (Neovison vison), which were raised in identical housing conditions. Different stages of approach behaviour towards novelty, and how these related within and across contexts, were explored. Our experimental design contained four tests: two novel object tests (non-social contexts) and two novel animated stimuli tests (social contexts). Our results showed consistency in shyness measures across multiple tests, indicating the existence of personality in farmed American mink. It was found that consistency in shyness measures differs across non-social and social contexts, as well as across the various stages in the approach towards novel objects, revealing that different aspects of shyness exist in the farmed American mink. To our knowledge this is the first study to reveal aspects of the shyness-boldness continuum in the American mink. Since the mink were raised in identical housing conditions, inherited factors may have been important in shaping the consistent inter-individual variation. Body weight and sex had no effect on the personality of the mink. Altogether, our results suggest that the shyness-boldness continuum cannot be explained by a simple underlying dispositional factor, but instead encompasses a broader term of hesitating behaviour that might comprise several different personality traits.

  13. Context Matters: Multiple Novelty Tests Reveal Different Aspects of Shyness-Boldness in Farmed American Mink (Neovison vison)

    PubMed Central

    Noer, Christina Lehmkuhl; Needham, Esther Kjær; Wiese, Ann-Sophie; Balsby, Thorsten Johannes Skovbjerg; Dabelsteen, Torben

    2015-01-01

    Animal personality research is receiving increasing interest from related fields, such as evolutionary personality psychology. By merging the conceptual understanding of personality, the contributions to both fields of research may be enhanced. In this study, we investigate animal personality based on the definition of personality traits as underlying dispositional factors, which are not directly measurable, but which predispose individuals to react through different behavioural patterns. We investigated the shyness-boldness continuum reflected in the consistency of inter-individual variation in behavioural responses towards novelty in 47 farmed American mink (Neovison vison), which were raised in identical housing conditions. Different stages of approach behaviour towards novelty, and how these related within and across contexts, were explored. Our experimental design contained four tests: two novel object tests (non-social contexts) and two novel animated stimuli tests (social contexts). Our results showed consistency in shyness measures across multiple tests, indicating the existence of personality in farmed American mink. It was found that consistency in shyness measures differs across non-social and social contexts, as well as across the various stages in the approach towards novel objects, revealing that different aspects of shyness exist in the farmed American mink. To our knowledge this is the first study to reveal aspects of the shyness-boldness continuum in the American mink. Since the mink were raised in identical housing conditions, inherited factors may have been important in shaping the consistent inter-individual variation. Body weight and sex had no effect on the personality of the mink. Altogether, our results suggest that the shyness-boldness continuum cannot be explained by a simple underlying dispositional factor, but instead encompasses a broader term of hesitating behaviour that might comprise several different personality traits. PMID

  14. Allosteric Nanobodies Reveal the Dynamic Range and Diverse Mechanisms of GPCR Activation

    PubMed Central

    Staus, Dean P; Strachan, Ryan T; Manglik, Aashish; Pani, Biswaranjan; Kahsai, Alem W; Kim, Tae Hun; Wingler, Laura M; Ahn, Seungkirl; Chatterjee, Arnab; Masoudi, Ali; Kruse, Andrew C; Pardon, Els; Steyaert, Jan; Weis, William I; Prosser, R. Scott; Kobilka, Brian K; Costa, Tommaso; Lefkowitz, Robert J

    2016-01-01

    G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) modulate many physiological processes by transducing a variety of extracellular cues into intracellular responses. Ligand binding to an extracellular orthosteric pocket propagates conformational change to the receptor cytosolic region to promote binding and activation of downstream signaling effectors such as G proteins and β-arrestins. It is widely appreciated that different agonists can share the same binding pocket but evoke unique receptor conformations leading to a wide range of downstream responses (i.e., ‘efficacy’)1. Furthermore, mounting biophysical evidence, primarily using the β-adrenergic receptor (β2AR) as a model system, supports the existence of multiple active and inactive conformational states2–5. However, how agonists with varying efficacy modulate these receptor states to initiate cellular responses is not well understood. Here we report stabilization of two distinct β2AR conformations using single domain camelid antibodies (nanobodies): a previously described positive allosteric nanobody (Nb80) and a newly identified negative allosteric nanobody (Nb60)6,7. We show that Nb60 stabilizes a previously unappreciated low affinity receptor state which corresponds to one of two inactive receptor conformations as delineated by X-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy. We find that the agonist isoproterenol has a 15,000-fold higher affinity for the β2AR in the presence of Nb80 compared to Nb60, highlighting the full allosteric range of a GPCR. Assessing the binding of 17 ligands of varying efficacy to the β2AR in the absence and presence of Nb60 or Nb80 reveals large ligand-specific effects that can only be explained using an allosteric model which assumes equilibrium amongst at least three receptor states. Agonists generally exert efficacy by stabilizing the active Nb80-stabilized receptor state (R80). In contrast, for a number of partial agonists, both stabilization of R80 and destabilization of the

  15. A review of DOE HEPA filter component test activities

    SciTech Connect

    Slawski, J.W.; Bresson, J.F.; Scripsick, R.C.

    1997-08-01

    All HEPA filters purchased for installation in DOE nuclear facilities are required to be tested at a Filter Test Facility (FTF) prior to installation. The number of HEPA filters purchased by DOE has been reduced so much that the Hanford FTF was closed. From Fiscal Year (FY) 1992 to 1994, funding was not provided to the FTF Technical Support Group (TSG) at the Los Alamos National Laboratory. As a consequence, Round Robin Tests (RRTs), performed twice each year by the FTFs to assess constituency of test results among the FTFs, were not performed in FY 1992 and FY 1993. The Annual Reports of FTF test activities were not prepared for FY 1992 - 1995. Technical support provided to the FTFs was minimal. There is talk of closing a second FTF, and ongoing discussions as to whether DOE will continue to fund operation of the FTFs. In FY 1994, DOE Defense Programs commenced funding the TSG. RRT data for FY 1994 and 1995 have been entered into the database; the FY 1994 RRT report has been issued; and the FY 1995 RRT report is in progress. Data from semiannual reports have been retrieved and entered into the database. Standards related to HEPA filter test and procurement activities are now scheduled for issuance by FY 1996. Continuation of these activities depends on whether DOE will continue to support the HEPA filter test program. The history and activities of the FTFs and the TSG at Los Alamos have been reported at previous Air Cleaning Conferences. Data from the FY 1991 Annual Report of FTF activities was presented at the 1992 Air Cleaning Conference. Preparation of the Annual Reports was temporarily suspended in 1992. However, all of the FTF Semiannual report data have been retrieved and entered into the data base. This paper focuses primarily on the results of HEPA filter tests conducted by FTFs during FY 1992 - FY 1995, and the possible effects of the DOE program uncertainties on the quality of HEPA filters for installation at the DOE sites. 15 refs., 13 tabs.

  16. Shuttle active thermal control system development testing. Volume 5: Integrated radiator/expendable cooling system tests

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Scheps, P. B.

    1974-01-01

    Tests were conducted to gather data on a space shuttle active control system (ATCS) incorporating both radiators and an expendable cooling device to provide vehicle heat removal. Two systems were tested and design information was provided for both nominal and limit conditions. The tests verified the concept that an integrated radiator/expendable cooling system can adequately maintain desired water quantities while responding to variations in heat loads and environments. In addition, the need for duct heating was demonstrated, while exhaust nozzle heating was also shown to be unnecessary.

  17. Screening bioactives reveals nanchangmycin as a broad spectrum antiviral active against Zika virus

    PubMed Central

    Rausch, Keiko; Hackett, Brent; Weinbren, Nathan; Reeder, Sophia; Sadovsky, Yoel; Hunter, Christopher; Schultz, David C.; Coyne, Carolyn; Cherry, Sara

    2017-01-01

    Zika virus is an emerging arthropod-borne flavivirus for which there are no vaccines or specific therapeutics. We screened a library of 2000 ‘bioactive’ compounds for their ability to block Zika virus infection in three distinct cell-types with two different strains of Zika virus. Using a microscopy-based assay, we validated 38 drugs that inhibited Zika virus infection, including FDA approved nucleoside analogs. Cells expressing high levels of the attachment factor AXL can be protected from infection with receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors, while placental-derived cells that lack AXL expression are insensitive to this inhibition. Importantly, we identified nanchangmycin as a potent inhibitor of Zika virus entry across all cell types tested including physiologically relevant primary cells. Nanchanmycin was also active against other medically relevant viruses including West Nile, dengue, and chikungunya virus that use a similar route of entry. This study provides a resource of small molecules to study Zika virus pathogenesis. PMID:28099856

  18. A Link between ORC-Origin Binding Mechanisms and Origin Activation Time Revealed in Budding Yeast

    PubMed Central

    Hoggard, Timothy; Shor, Erika; Müller, Carolin A.; Nieduszynski, Conrad A.; Fox, Catherine A.

    2013-01-01

    Eukaryotic DNA replication origins are selected in G1-phase when the origin recognition complex (ORC) binds chromosomal positions and triggers molecular events culminating in the initiation of DNA replication (a.k.a. origin firing) during S-phase. Each chromosome uses multiple origins for its duplication, and each origin fires at a characteristic time during S-phase, creating a cell-type specific genome replication pattern relevant to differentiation and genome stability. It is unclear whether ORC-origin interactions are relevant to origin activation time. We applied a novel genome-wide strategy to classify origins in the model eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae based on the types of molecular interactions used for ORC-origin binding. Specifically, origins were classified as DNA-dependent when the strength of ORC-origin binding in vivo could be explained by the affinity of ORC for origin DNA in vitro, and, conversely, as ‘chromatin-dependent’ when the ORC-DNA interaction in vitro was insufficient to explain the strength of ORC-origin binding in vivo. These two origin classes differed in terms of nucleosome architecture and dependence on origin-flanking sequences in plasmid replication assays, consistent with local features of chromatin promoting ORC binding at ‘chromatin-dependent’ origins. Finally, the ‘chromatin-dependent’ class was enriched for origins that fire early in S-phase, while the DNA-dependent class was enriched for later firing origins. Conversely, the latest firing origins showed a positive association with the ORC-origin DNA paradigm for normal levels of ORC binding, whereas the earliest firing origins did not. These data reveal a novel association between ORC-origin binding mechanisms and the regulation of origin activation time. PMID:24068963

  19. Dissection of a Ciona regulatory element reveals complexity of cross-species enhancer activity

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Wei-Chung; Pauls, Stefan; Bacha, Jamil; Elgar, Greg; Loose, Matthew; Shimeld, Sebastian M.

    2014-01-01

    Vertebrate genomes share numerous conserved non-coding elements, many of which function as enhancer elements and are hypothesised to be under evolutionary constraint due to a need to be bound by combinations of sequence-specific transcription factors. In contrast, few such conserved elements can be detected between vertebrates and their closest invertebrate relatives. Despite this lack of sequence identity, cross-species transgenesis has identified some cases where non-coding DNA from invertebrates drives reporter gene expression in transgenic vertebrates in patterns reminiscent of the expression of vertebrate orthologues. Such instances are presumed to reflect the presence of conserved suites of binding sites in the regulatory regions of invertebrate and vertebrate orthologues, such that both regulatory elements can correctly interpret the trans-activating environment. Shuffling of binding sites has been suggested to lie behind loss of sequence conservation; however this has not been experimentally tested. Here we examine the underlying basis of enhancer activity for the Ciona intestinalis βγ-crystallin gene, which drives expression in the lens of transgenic vertebrates despite the Ciona lineage predating the evolution of the lens. We construct an interactive gene regulatory network (GRN) for vertebrate lens development, allowing network interactions to be robustly catalogued and conserved network components and features to be identified. We show that a small number of binding motifs are necessary for Ciona βγ-crystallin expression, and narrow down the likely factors that bind to these motifs. Several of these overlap with the conserved core of the vertebrate lens GRN, implicating these sites in cross species function. However when we test these motifs in a transgenic vertebrate they prove to be dispensable for reporter expression in the lens. These results show that current models depicting cross species enhancer function as dependent on conserved binding

  20. The active flexible wing aeroservoelastic wind-tunnel test program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noll, Thomas; Perry, Boyd

    1989-01-01

    For a specific application of aeroservoelastic technology, Rockwell International Corporation developed a concept known as the Active Flexible Wing (AFW). The concept incorporates multiple active leading-and trailing-edge control surfaces with a very flexible wing such that wing shape is varied in an optimum manner resulting in improved performance and reduced weight. As a result of a cooperative program between the AFWAL's Flight Dynamics Laboratory, Rockwell, and NASA LaRC, a scaled aeroelastic wind-tunnel model of an advanced fighter was designed, fabricated, and tested in the NASA LaRC Transonic Dynamics Tunnel (TDT) to validate the AFW concept. Besides conducting the wind-tunnel tests NASA provided a design of an Active Roll Control (ARC) System that was implemented and evaluated during the tests. The ARC system used a concept referred to as Control Law Parameterization which involves maintaining constant performance, robustness, and stability while using different combinations of multiple control surface displacements. Since the ARC system used measured control surface stability derivatives during the design, the predicted performance and stability results correlated very well with test measurements.

  1. Detailed investigation of the microbial community in foaming activated sludge reveals novel foam formers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Feng; Wang, Zhi-Ping; Yu, Ke; Zhang, T.

    2015-01-01

    Foaming of activated sludge (AS) causes adverse impacts on wastewater treatment operation and hygiene. In this study, we investigated the microbial communities of foam, foaming AS and non-foaming AS in a sewage treatment plant via deep-sequencing of the taxonomic marker genes 16S rRNA and mycobacterial rpoB and a metagenomic approach. In addition to Actinobacteria, many genera (e.g., Clostridium XI, Arcobacter, Flavobacterium) were more abundant in the foam than in the AS. On the other hand, deep-sequencing of rpoB did not detect any obligate pathogenic mycobacteria in the foam. We found that unknown factors other than the abundance of Gordonia sp. could determine the foaming process, because abundance of the same species was stable before and after a foaming event over six months. More interestingly, although the dominant Gordonia foam former was the closest with G. amarae, it was identified as an undescribed Gordonia species by referring to the 16S rRNA gene, gyrB and, most convincingly, the reconstructed draft genome from metagenomic reads. Our results, based on metagenomics and deep sequencing, reveal that foams are derived from diverse taxa, which expands previous understanding and provides new insight into the underlying complications of the foaming phenomenon in AS.

  2. Genome-wide analysis of LXRα activation reveals new transcriptional networks in human atherosclerotic foam cells.

    PubMed

    Feldmann, Radmila; Fischer, Cornelius; Kodelja, Vitam; Behrens, Sarah; Haas, Stefan; Vingron, Martin; Timmermann, Bernd; Geikowski, Anne; Sauer, Sascha

    2013-04-01

    Increased physiological levels of oxysterols are major risk factors for developing atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. Lipid-loaded macrophages, termed foam cells, are important during the early development of atherosclerotic plaques. To pursue the hypothesis that ligand-based modulation of the nuclear receptor LXRα is crucial for cell homeostasis during atherosclerotic processes, we analysed genome-wide the action of LXRα in foam cells and macrophages. By integrating chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing (ChIP-seq) and gene expression profile analyses, we generated a highly stringent set of 186 LXRα target genes. Treatment with the nanomolar-binding ligand T0901317 and subsequent auto-regulatory LXRα activation resulted in sequence-dependent sharpening of the genome-binding patterns of LXRα. LXRα-binding loci that correlated with differential gene expression revealed 32 novel target genes with potential beneficial effects, which in part explained the implications of disease-associated genetic variation data. These observations identified highly integrated LXRα ligand-dependent transcriptional networks, including the APOE/C1/C4/C2-gene cluster, which contribute to the reversal of cholesterol efflux and the dampening of inflammation processes in foam cells to prevent atherogenesis.

  3. Chlorophyll a fluorescence lifetime reveals reversible UV-induced photosynthetic activity in the green algae Tetraselmis.

    PubMed

    Kristoffersen, Arne S; Hamre, Børge; Frette, Øyvind; Erga, Svein R

    2016-04-01

    The fluorescence lifetime is a very useful parameter for investigating biological materials on the molecular level as it is mostly independent of the fluorophore concentration. The green alga Tetraselmis blooms in summer, and therefore its response to UV irradiation is of particular interest. In vivo fluorescence lifetimes of chlorophyll a were measured under both normal and UV-stressed conditions of Tetraselmis. Fluorescence was induced by two-photon excitation using a femtosecond laser and laser scanning microscope. The lifetimes were measured in the time domain by time-correlated single-photon counting. Under normal conditions, the fluorescence lifetime was 262 ps, while after 2 h of exposure to UV radiation the lifetime increased to 389 ps, indicating decreased photochemical quenching, likely caused by a damaged and down-regulated photosynthetic apparatus. This was supported by a similar increase in the lifetime to 425 ps when inhibiting photosynthesis chemically using DCMU. Furthermore, the UV-stressed sample was dark-adapted overnight, resulting in a return of the lifetime to 280 ps, revealing that the damage caused by UV radiation is repairable on a relatively short time scale. This reversal of photosynthetic activity was also confirmed by [Formula: see text] measurements.

  4. Ribosome•RelA structures reveal the mechanism of stringent response activation

    PubMed Central

    Loveland, Anna B; Bah, Eugene; Madireddy, Rohini; Zhang, Ying; Brilot, Axel F; Grigorieff, Nikolaus; Korostelev, Andrei A

    2016-01-01

    Stringent response is a conserved bacterial stress response underlying virulence and antibiotic resistance. RelA/SpoT-homolog proteins synthesize transcriptional modulators (p)ppGpp, allowing bacteria to adapt to stress. RelA is activated during amino-acid starvation, when cognate deacyl-tRNA binds to the ribosomal A (aminoacyl-tRNA) site. We report four cryo-EM structures of E. coli RelA bound to the 70S ribosome, in the absence and presence of deacyl-tRNA accommodating in the 30S A site. The boomerang-shaped RelA with a wingspan of more than 100 Å wraps around the A/R (30S A-site/RelA-bound) tRNA. The CCA end of the A/R tRNA pins the central TGS domain against the 30S subunit, presenting the (p)ppGpp-synthetase domain near the 30S spur. The ribosome and A/R tRNA are captured in three conformations, revealing hitherto elusive states of tRNA engagement with the ribosomal decoding center. Decoding-center rearrangements are coupled with the step-wise 30S-subunit 'closure', providing insights into the dynamics of high-fidelity tRNA decoding. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17029.001 PMID:27434674

  5. Metabolomics Reveals that Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Activation by Environmental Chemicals Induces Systemic Metabolic Dysfunction in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Limin; Hatzakis, Emmanuel; Nichols, Robert G.; Hao, Ruixin; Correll, Jared; Smith, Philip B.; Chiaro, Christopher R.; Perdew, Gary H.; Patterson, Andrew D.

    2016-01-01

    Environmental exposure to dioxins and dioxin-like compounds poses a significant health risk for human health. Developing a better understanding of the mechanisms of toxicity through activation of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) is likely to improve the reliability of risk assessment. In this study, the AHR-dependent metabolic response of mice exposed to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzofuran (TCDF) were assessed using global 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR)-based metabolomics and targeted metabolic profiling of extracts obtained from serum and liver. 1H NMR analyses revealed that TCDF exposure suppressed gluconeogenesis and glycogenolysis, stimulated lipogenesis, and triggered inflammatory gene expression in an Ahr-dependent manner. Targeted analyses using gas chromatography mass spectrometry showed TCDF treatment altered the ratio of unsaturated/saturated fatty acids. Consistent with this observation, an increase in hepatic expression of stearoyl coenzyme A desaturase 1 was also observed. In addition, TCDF exposure resulted in inhibition of de novo fatty acid biosynthesis manifested by down-regulation of acetyl-CoA, malonyl-CoA and palmitoyl-CoA metabolites and related mRNA levels. In contrast, no significant changes in the levels of glucose and lipid were observed in serum and liver obtained from Ahr-null mice following TCDF treatment, thus strongly supporting the important role of the AHR in mediating the metabolic effects seen following TCDF exposure. PMID:26023891

  6. The anti-obesity drug orlistat reveals anti-viral activity.

    PubMed

    Ammer, Elisabeth; Nietzsche, Sandor; Rien, Christian; Kühnl, Alexander; Mader, Theresa; Heller, Regine; Sauerbrei, Andreas; Henke, Andreas

    2015-12-01

    The administration of drugs to inhibit metabolic pathways not only reduces the risk of obesity-induced diseases in humans but may also hamper the replication of different viral pathogens. In order to investigate the value of the US Food and Drug Administration-approved anti-obesity drug orlistat in view of its anti-viral activity against different human-pathogenic viruses, several anti-viral studies, electron microscopy analyses as well as fatty acid uptake experiments were performed. The results indicate that administrations of non-cytotoxic concentrations of orlistat reduced the replication of coxsackievirus B3 (CVB3) in different cell types significantly. Moreover, orlistat revealed cell protective effects and modified the formation of multi-layered structures in CVB3-infected cells, which are necessary for viral replication. Lowering fatty acid uptake from the extracellular environment by phloretin administrations had only marginal impact on CVB3 replication. Finally, orlistat reduced also the replication of varicella-zoster virus moderately but had no significant influence on the replication of influenza A viruses. The data support further experiments into the value of orlistat as an inhibitor of the fatty acid synthase to develop new anti-viral compounds, which are based on the modulation of cellular metabolic pathways.

  7. Detailed investigation of the microbial community in foaming activated sludge reveals novel foam formers

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Feng; Wang, Zhi-Ping; Yu, Ke; Zhang, T.

    2015-01-01

    Foaming of activated sludge (AS) causes adverse impacts on wastewater treatment operation and hygiene. In this study, we investigated the microbial communities of foam, foaming AS and non-foaming AS in a sewage treatment plant via deep-sequencing of the taxonomic marker genes 16S rRNA and mycobacterial rpoB and a metagenomic approach. In addition to Actinobacteria, many genera (e.g., Clostridium XI, Arcobacter, Flavobacterium) were more abundant in the foam than in the AS. On the other hand, deep-sequencing of rpoB did not detect any obligate pathogenic mycobacteria in the foam. We found that unknown factors other than the abundance of Gordonia sp. could determine the foaming process, because abundance of the same species was stable before and after a foaming event over six months. More interestingly, although the dominant Gordonia foam former was the closest with G. amarae, it was identified as an undescribed Gordonia species by referring to the 16S rRNA gene, gyrB and, most convincingly, the reconstructed draft genome from metagenomic reads. Our results, based on metagenomics and deep sequencing, reveal that foams are derived from diverse taxa, which expands previous understanding and provides new insight into the underlying complications of the foaming phenomenon in AS. PMID:25560234

  8. Revealing a new activity of the human Dicer DUF283 domain in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Kurzynska-Kokorniak, Anna; Pokornowska, Maria; Koralewska, Natalia; Hoffmann, Weronika; Bienkowska-Szewczyk, Krystyna; Figlerowicz, Marek

    2016-01-01

    The ribonuclease Dicer is a multidomain enzyme that plays a fundamental role in the biogenesis of small regulatory RNAs (srRNAs), which control gene expression by targeting complementary transcripts and inducing their cleavage or repressing their translation. Recent studies of Dicer’s domains have permitted to propose their roles in srRNA biogenesis. For all of Dicer’s domains except one, called DUF283 (domain of unknown function), their involvement in RNA substrate recognition, binding or cleavage has been postulated. For DUF283, the interaction with Dicer’s protein partners has been the only function suggested thus far. In this report, we demonstrate that the isolated DUF283 domain from human Dicer is capable of binding single-stranded nucleic acids in vitro. We also show that DUF283 can act as a nucleic acid annealer that accelerates base-pairing between complementary RNA/DNA molecules in vitro. We further demonstrate an annealing activity of full length human Dicer. The overall results suggest that Dicer, presumably through its DUF283 domain, might facilitate hybridization between short RNAs and their targets. The presented findings reveal the complex nature of Dicer, whose functions may extend beyond the biogenesis of srRNAs. PMID:27045313

  9. High throughput sequencing reveals alterations in the recombination signatures with diminishing Spo11 activity.

    PubMed

    Rockmill, Beth; Lefrançois, Philippe; Voelkel-Meiman, Karen; Oke, Ashwini; Roeder, G Shirleen; Fung, Jennifer C

    2013-10-01

    Spo11 is the topoisomerase-like enzyme responsible for the induction of the meiosis-specific double strand breaks (DSBs), which initiates the recombination events responsible for proper chromosome segregation. Nineteen PCR-induced alleles of SPO11 were identified and characterized genetically and cytologically. Recombination, spore viability and synaptonemal complex (SC) formation were decreased to varying extents in these mutants. Arrest by ndt80 restored these events in two severe hypomorphic mutants, suggesting that ndt80-arrested nuclei are capable of extended DSB activity. While crossing-over, spore viability and synaptonemal complex (SC) formation defects correlated, the extent of such defects was not predictive of the level of heteroallelic gene conversions (prototrophs) exhibited by each mutant. High throughput sequencing of tetrads from spo11 hypomorphs revealed that gene conversion tracts associated with COs are significantly longer and gene conversion tracts unassociated with COs are significantly shorter than in wild type. By modeling the extent of these tract changes, we could account for the discrepancy in genetic measurements of prototrophy and crossover association. These findings provide an explanation for the unexpectedly low prototroph levels exhibited by spo11 hypomorphs and have important implications for genetic studies that assume an unbiased recovery of prototrophs, such as measurements of CO homeostasis. Our genetic and physical data support previous observations of DSB-limited meioses, in which COs are disproportionally maintained over NCOs (CO homeostasis).

  10. Analysis of Culex and Aedes mosquitoes in southwestern Nigeria revealed no West Nile virus activity

    PubMed Central

    Sule, Waidi Folorunso; Oluwayelu, Daniel Oladimeji

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Amplification and transmission of West Nile virus (WNV) by mosquitoes are driven by presence and number of viraemic/susceptible avian hosts. Methods In order to predict risk of WNV infection to humans, we collected mosquitoes from horse stables in Lagos and Ibadan, southwestern Nigeria. The mosquitoes were sorted and tested in pools with real-time RT-PCR to detect WNV (or flavivirus) RNA using WNV-specific primers and probes, as well as, pan-flavivirus-specific primers in two-step real-time RT-PCR. Minimum infection rate (MIR) was used to estimate mosquito infection rate. Results Only two genera of mosquitoes were caught (Culex, 98.9% and Aedes, 1.0%) totalling 4,112 females. None of the 424 mosquito pools tested was positive for WNV RNA; consequently the MIR was zero. Sequencing and BLAST analysis of amplicons detected in pan-flavivirus primer-mediated RT-PCR gave a consensus sequence of 28S rRNA of Culex quinquefasciatus suggesting integration of flaviviral RNA into mosquito genome. Conclusion While the latter finding requires further investigation, we conclude there was little or no risk of human infection with WNV in the study areas during sampling. There was predominance of Culex mosquito, a competent WNV vector, around horse stables in the study areas. However, mosquito surveillance needs to continue for prompt detection of WNV activity in mosquitoes. PMID:27279943

  11. Taming Test Anxiety: The Activation of Failure-Related Concepts Enhances Cognitive Test Performance of Test-Anxious Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tempel, Tobias; Neumann, Roland

    2016-01-01

    We investigated processes underlying performance decrements of highly test-anxious persons. Three experiments contrasted conditions that differed in the degree of activation of concepts related to failure. Participants memorized a list of words either containing words related to failure or containing no words related to failure in Experiment 1. In…

  12. Preserved hippocampus activation in normal aging as revealed by fMRI.

    PubMed

    Persson, Jonas; Kalpouzos, Grégoria; Nilsson, Lars-Göran; Ryberg, Mats; Nyberg, Lars

    2011-07-01

    The hippocampus is deteriorated in various pathologies such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and such deterioration has been linked to memory impairment. By contrast, the structural and functional effects of normal aging on the hippocampus is a matter of debate, with some findings suggesting deterioration and others providing evidence of preservation. This constitutes a crucial question since many investigations on AD are based on the assumption that the deterioration of the hippocampus is the breaking point between normal and pathological aging. A growing number of fMRI studies specifically aimed at investigating hippocampal engagement in various cognitive tasks, notably memory tasks, but the results have been inconclusive. Here, we optimized the episodic face-name paired-associates task in order to test the functioning of the hippocampus in normal aging. Critically, we found no difference in the activation of the hippocampus between the young and a group of older participants. Analysis of individual patterns of activation substantiated this impression. Collectively, these findings provide evidence of preserved hippocampal functioning in normal aging.

  13. Coseismic landslides reveal near-surface rock strength in a high-relief tectonically active setting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gallen, Sean F; Clark, Marin K; Godt, Jonathan W.

    2014-01-01

    We present quantitative estimates of near-surface rock strength relevant to landscape evolution and landslide hazard assessment for 15 geologic map units of the Longmen Shan, China. Strength estimates are derived from a novel method that inverts earthquake peak ground acceleration models and coseismic landslide inventories to obtain material proper- ties and landslide thickness. Aggregate rock strength is determined by prescribing a friction angle of 30° and solving for effective cohesion. Effective cohesion ranges are from 70 kPa to 107 kPa for 15 geologic map units, and are approximately an order of magnitude less than typical laboratory measurements, probably because laboratory tests on hand-sized specimens do not incorporate the effects of heterogeneity and fracturing that likely control near-surface strength at the hillslope scale. We find that strength among the geologic map units studied varies by less than a factor of two. However, increased weakening of units with proximity to the range front, where precipitation and active fault density are the greatest, suggests that cli- matic and tectonic factors overwhelm lithologic differences in rock strength in this high-relief tectonically active setting.

  14. Heavy metals testing in active pharmaceutical ingredients: an alternate approach.

    PubMed

    Raghuram, P; Soma Raju, I V; Sriramulu, J

    2010-01-01

    The principle of the pharmacopoeial heavy metals test is detection and estimation of the metallic impurities colored by sulfide ion by comparison against lead standard. The test suffers from a loss of analytes upon ashing and from having varied responses for various metals. An inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES) for estimating 23 metals in active pharmaceutical ingredients is being proposed. The method covers the metals listed in USP, Ph. Eur and EMEA guidance on "Residues of Metal Catalysts or Metal Reagents".

  15. The Activity of Antimicrobial Surfaces Varies by Testing Protocol Utilized

    PubMed Central

    Campos, Matias D.; Zucchi, Paola C.; Phung, Ann; Leonard, Steven N.; Hirsch, Elizabeth B.

    2016-01-01

    Background Contaminated hospital surfaces are an important source of nosocomial infections. A major obstacle in marketing antimicrobial surfaces is a lack of efficacy data based on standardized testing protocols. Aim We compared the efficacy of multiple testing protocols against several “antimicrobial” film surfaces. Methods Four clinical isolates were used: one Escherichia coli, one Klebsiella pneumoniae, and two Staphylococcus aureus strains. Two industry methods (modified ISO 22196 and ASTM E2149), a “dried droplet”, and a “transfer” method were tested against two commercially available antimicrobial films, one film in development, an untreated control, and a positive (silver) control film. At 2 (only ISO) and 24 hours following inoculation, bacteria were collected from film surfaces and enumerated. Results Compared to untreated films in all protocols, there were no significant differences in recovery on either commercial brand at 2 or 24 hours after inoculation. The silver surface demonstrated significant microbicidal activity (mean loss 4.9 Log10 CFU/ml) in all methods and time points with the exception of 2 hours in the ISO protocol and the transfer method. Using our novel droplet method, no differences between placebo and active surfaces were detected. The surface in development demonstrated variable activity depending on method, organism, and time point. The ISO demonstrated minimal activity at 2 hours but significant activity at 24 hours (mean 4.5 Log10 CFU/ml difference versus placebo). The ASTEM protocol exhibited significant differences in recovery of staphylococci (mean 5 Log10 CFU/ml) but not Gram-negative isolates (10 fold decrease). Minimal activity was observed with this film in the transfer method. Conclusions Varying results between protocols suggested that efficacy of antimicrobial surfaces cannot be easily and reproducibly compared. Clinical use should be considered and further development of representative methods is needed. PMID

  16. Isolation of glycopeptides with skin test activity from dermatophytes.

    PubMed Central

    Moser, S A; Pollack, J D

    1978-01-01

    By using ethylene glycol extraction of whole submerged cultures followed by Sephadex G-200 and diethylaminoethyl-Sephadex chromatography, we isolated four distinct glycopeptides from Trichophyton mentagrophytes, T. rubrum, and Microsporum canis. Chemical analyses revealed that these glycopeptides contained mostly carbohydrate (42.5 to 81.6%) and protein (4.3 to 11.3%), with lesser amounts of phosphorus (0.4 to 6.0%) and hexosamines (0.3 to 0.6%). Based upon total carbohydrate and monosaccharide content, these dermatophyte glycopeptides could be divided into two chemical groups: glucopeptides (DSI1) and mannopeptides (DSI2, DSII1, and DSII2). The mannopeptides and glucopeptides of each species of dermatophyte were not significantly different chemically from those derived from the other two dermatophyte species studied. Skin testing of DSI1-glycopeptides or DSI2-mannopeptides in immunized guinea pigs indicated that only the DSI2-mannopeptides elicited a delayed hypersensitivity reaction. Skin testing T. mentagrophytes 62-infected guinea pigs with the four purified DS-glycopeptides, as well as earlier fractions from the purification scheme, derived from T. mentagrophytes, T. rubrum, and M. canis, again indicated that only the DSI2-mannopeptides of the two Trichophyton species elicited a delayed hypersensitivity reaction. The number of infections or duration of infection had no effect on the size of the skin test response. DSI2-mannopeptides were non-cross-reactive between genera when tested in Trichophyton-immunized or -infected guinea pigs and Microsporum-immunized guinea pigs. Images PMID:640721

  17. Dislocation-mediated relaxation in nanograined columnar palladium films revealed by on-chip time-resolved HRTEM testing

    PubMed Central

    Colla, M. -S.; Amin-Ahmadi, B.; Idrissi, H.; Malet, L.; Godet, S.; Raskin, J. -P.; Schryvers, D.; Pardoen, T.

    2015-01-01

    The high-rate sensitivity of nanostructured metallic materials demonstrated in the recent literature is related to the predominance of thermally activated deformation mechanisms favoured by a large density of internal interfaces. Here we report time-resolved high-resolution electron transmission microscopy creep tests on thin nanograined films using on-chip nanomechanical testing. Tests are performed on palladium, which exhibited unexpectedly large creep rates at room temperature. Despite the small 30-nm grain size, relaxation is found to be mediated by dislocation mechanisms. The dislocations interact with the growth nanotwins present in the grains, leading to a loss of coherency of twin boundaries. The density of stored dislocations first increases with applied deformation, and then decreases with time to drive additional deformation while no grain boundary mechanism is observed. This fast relaxation constitutes a key issue in the development of various micro- and nanotechnologies such as palladium membranes for hydrogen applications. PMID:25557273

  18. Evaluation of some biological tests as parameters for microbial activities in soils. II. Field investigations.

    PubMed

    Abd-El-Malek, Y; Monib, M; Rizk, S G; Shehata, S M

    1976-01-01

    Investigations were designed to study the effect of certain factors on the microbial activities in soil. The parameters, used as an index of the microbial activities, were total bacterial counts, dehydrogenase activity, oxidation of organic carbon, and CO2 evolved/7 days. Bahteem Farm clay soil was examined for determining the effects of depth, type of fertilization, and crop rotation on the microbial activities. It appears that the microbial activities, as indicated by the tested parameters, were more pronounced in the surface 15 cm-layer than in the subsurface layer (15-30 cm). Results of all the parameters tested showed markedly higher increases with farmyard manure than with nitrogenous fertilizer and in the control, without significant differences between the latter two. Moreover, the time of sampling had no effect on the results obtained for all parameters. Different types of rotations did not exert significant variation in total bacterial counts, though more than one crop per year increased the organic carbon content of soil and mostly the dehydrogenase activity, whereas the evolution of CO2 tended to decrease. At Gabal el-Asfar Farm, the effect of irrigation with sewage effluent, for long periods, on the microbial activities of sandy soil was investigated. Sewage water stimulated the total bacteria, raised the dehydrogenase activity, the organic carbon, and the production of CO2. In North El Tahreer and Mariut Sectors, the effect of both the type and age of cultivation on the microbial activities in the calcareous soils were examined. Cultivation raised the figures of all the tested parameters progressively with time of cultivation. It was also noticed that crops exerted more beneficial effects on microbial activities than orchards, and the dehydrogenase test was the most reliable parameter to reveal this fact.

  19. Relaxation training affects success and activation on a teaching test.

    PubMed

    Helin, P; Hänninen, O

    1987-12-01

    We studied the effects of an audiocassette-relaxation training period (ART) and its timing on success at a teaching test (lecture type), on observed tension and on a number of physiological responses. The electrical activity of the upper trapezius muscle (EMG), heart rate (HR) and blood pressure (BP), of female and male instructor candidates, were examined before, during and after the teaching test as well as during its critique. The relaxation period (18 min) was presented either on the preceding night (ARTnt) or immediately before the teaching test (ARTimm). The influence of personality (types A-B and extrovert-introvert) was also studied. ART improved success at the teaching test in both sexes. In males (but not in females), ARTimm decreased EMG level during the test, but ARTnt increased EMG at the test period as compared to the control group. In females, both ARTnt and ARTimm lowered HR more than in the control group. ARTimm lowered systolic BP in both sexes. Personality types affected the ART responses; ART was more beneficial for type A than B subjects.

  20. Wind Tunnel Test of the SMART Active Flap Rotor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Straub, Friedrich K.; Anand, Vaidyanthan R.; Birchette, Terrence S.; Lau, Benton H.

    2009-01-01

    Boeing and a team from Air Force, NASA, Army, DARPA, MIT, UCLA, and U. of Maryland have successfully completed a wind-tunnel test of the smart material actuated rotor technology (SMART) rotor in the 40- by 80-foot wind-tunnel of the National Full-Scale Aerodynamic Complex at NASA Ames Research Center. The Boeing SMART rotor is a full-scale, five-bladed bearingless MD 900 helicopter rotor modified with a piezoelectric-actuated trailing edge flap on each blade. The eleven-week test program evaluated the forward flight characteristics of the active-flap rotor at speeds up to 155 knots, gathered data to validate state-of-the-art codes for rotor aero-acoustic analysis, and quantified the effects of open and closed loop active flap control on rotor loads, noise, and performance. The test demonstrated on-blade smart material control of flaps on a full-scale rotor for the first time in a wind tunnel. The effectiveness of the active flap control on noise and vibration was conclusively demonstrated. Results showed significant reductions up to 6dB in blade-vortex-interaction and in-plane noise, as well as reductions in vibratory hub loads up to 80%. Trailing-edge flap deflections were controlled within 0.1 degrees of the commanded value. The impact of the active flap on control power, rotor smoothing, and performance was also demonstrated. Finally, the reliability of the flap actuation system was successfully proven in more than 60 hours of wind-tunnel testing.

  1. Preference as a Function of Active Interresponse Times: A Test of the Active Time Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Misak, Paul; Cleaveland, J. Mark

    2011-01-01

    In this article, we describe a test of the active time model for concurrent variable interval (VI) choice. The active time model (ATM) suggests that the time since the most recent response is one of the variables controlling choice in concurrent VI VI schedules of reinforcement. In our experiment, pigeons were trained in a multiple concurrent…

  2. Altered Spontaneous Activity in Patients with Persistent Somatoform Pain Disorder Revealed by Regional Homogeneity

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Chao; Lu, Jing; Li, Xuzhou; Tang, Chaozheng; Fan, Mingxia; Luo, Yanli

    2016-01-01

    Persistent somatoform pain disorder (PSPD) is a mental disorder un-associated with any somatic injury and can cause severe somatosensory and emotional impairments in patients. However, so far, the neuro-pathophysiological mechanism of the functional impairments in PSPD is still unclear. The present study assesses the difference in regional spontaneous activity between PSPD and healthy controls (HC) during a resting state, in order to elucidate the neural mechanisms underlying PSPD. Resting-state functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging data were obtained from 13 PSPD patients and 23 age- and gender-matched HC subjects in this study. Kendall’s coefficient of concordance was used to measure regional homogeneity (ReHo), and a two-sample t-test was subsequently performed to investigate the ReHo difference between PSPD and HC. Additionally, the correlations between the mean ReHo of each survived area and the clinical assessments were further analyzed. Compared with the HC group, patients with PSPD exhibited decreased ReHo in the bilateral primary somatosensory cortex, posterior cerebellum, and occipital lobe, while increased ReHo in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and default mode network (including the medial PFC, right inferior parietal lobe (IPL), and left supramarginal gyrus). In addition, significant positive correlations were found between the mean ReHo of both right IPL and left supramarginal gyrus and participants’ Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (SAS) scores, and between the mean ReHo of the left middle frontal gyrus and Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) scores. Our results suggest that abnormal spontaneous brain activity in specific brain regions during a resting state may be associated with the dysfunctions in pain, memory and emotional processing commonly observed in patients with PSPD. These findings help us to understand the neural mechanisms underlying PSPD and suggest that the ReHo metric could be used as a clinical marker for PSPD. PMID:26977802

  3. Parallel Functional Activity Profiling Reveals Valvulopathogens Are Potent 5-Hydroxytryptamine2B Receptor Agonists: Implications for Drug Safety Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Xi-Ping; Setola, Vincent; Yadav, Prem N.; Allen, John A.; Rogan, Sarah C.; Hanson, Bonnie J.; Revankar, Chetana; Robers, Matt; Doucette, Chris

    2009-01-01

    Drug-induced valvular heart disease (VHD) is a serious side effect of a few medications, including some that are on the market. Pharmacological studies of VHD-associated medications (e.g., fenfluramine, pergolide, methysergide, and cabergoline) have revealed that they and/or their metabolites are potent 5-hydroxytryptamine2B (5-HT2B) receptor agonists. We have shown that activation of 5-HT2B receptors on human heart valve interstitial cells in vitro induces a proliferative response reminiscent of the fibrosis that typifies VHD. To identify current or future drugs that might induce VHD, we screened approximately 2200 U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved or investigational medications to identify 5-HT2B receptor agonists, using calcium-based high-throughput screening. Of these 2200 compounds, 27 were 5-HT2B receptor agonists (hits); 14 of these had previously been identified as 5-HT2B receptor agonists, including seven bona fide valvulopathogens. Six of the hits (guanfacine, quinidine, xylometazoline, oxymetazoline, fenoldopam, and ropinirole) are approved medications. Twenty-three of the hits were then “functionally profiled” (i.e., assayed in parallel for 5-HT2B receptor agonism using multiple readouts to test for functional selectivity). In these assays, the known valvulopathogens were efficacious at concentrations as low as 30 nM, whereas the other compounds were less so. Hierarchical clustering analysis of the pEC50 data revealed that ropinirole (which is not associated with valvulopathy) was clearly segregated from known valvulopathogens. Taken together, our data demonstrate that patterns of 5-HT2B receptor functional selectivity might be useful for identifying compounds likely to induce valvular heart disease. PMID:19570945

  4. Perceptual distortions in pitch and time reveal active prediction and support for an auditory pitch-motion hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Henry, Molly J; McAuley, J Devin

    2013-01-01

    A number of accounts of human auditory perception assume that listeners use prior stimulus context to generate predictions about future stimulation. Here, we tested an auditory pitch-motion hypothesis that was developed from this perspective. Listeners judged either the time change (i.e., duration) or pitch change of a comparison frequency glide relative to a standard (referent) glide. Under a constant-velocity assumption, listeners were hypothesized to use the pitch velocity (Δf/Δt) of the standard glide to generate predictions about the pitch velocity of the comparison glide, leading to perceptual distortions along the to-be-judged dimension when the velocities of the two glides differed. These predictions were borne out in the pattern of relative points of subjective equality by a significant three-way interaction between the velocities of the two glides and task. In general, listeners' judgments along the task-relevant dimension (pitch or time) were affected by expectations generated by the constant-velocity standard, but in an opposite manner for the two stimulus dimensions. When the comparison glide velocity was faster than the standard, listeners overestimated time change, but underestimated pitch change, whereas when the comparison glide velocity was slower than the standard, listeners underestimated time change, but overestimated pitch change. Perceptual distortions were least evident when the velocities of the standard and comparison glides were matched. Fits of an imputed velocity model further revealed increasingly larger distortions at faster velocities. The present findings provide support for the auditory pitch-motion hypothesis and add to a larger body of work revealing a role for active prediction in human auditory perception.

  5. A follow-up study on three caries activity tests.

    PubMed

    Shi, Sizhen; Deng, Qing; Hayashi, Yoshihiro; Yakushiji, Masashi; Machida, Yukio; Liang, Qin

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to study the efficacy of three CAT's (Dentocult SM, Dentocult LB and Dentobuff Strip) in revealing caries condition and predicting caries progress, and provide a reference for application by comparing the three tests. Oral condition and results of the three CAT's of 82 children aged 3 to 4 were recorded and followed up. The examination was checked again two years later. The caries incidence, dft and CSI data from the two examinations were analyzed statistically. The results were that each Dentocult SM degree showed significant variances in incidence rate, as did the dft and CSI results in the second examination. The dft and CSI of both examinations exhibited a high degree of statistical significance. The same may be said of the Dentocult LB findings for the two years. No noticeable variances in caries incidence rate, dft and CSI from the Dentobuff Strip test were observed in both years' study, nor was there any statistical significance drawn from the findings, except for those of the second exam. No gender differences were observed in the distribution by degree with the three CATs The conclusion is that Dentocult SM is the best of the three tests for the diagnosis of the presence of caries and prognosis of its progress, Dentocult LB is second best whereas the Dentobuff Strip shows no detection capability. The findings serve as an application reference.

  6. Antinociceptive activity of atranorin in mice orofacial nociception tests.

    PubMed

    Siqueira, Rosana S; Bonjardim, Leonardo R; Araújo, Adriano A S; Araújo, Bruno E S; Melo, Marcélia G D; Oliveira, Marília G B; Gelain, Daniel P; Silva, Francilene A; DeSantana, Josimari M; Albuquerque-Júnior, Ricardo L C; Rocha, Ricardo F; Moreira, José C F; Antoniolli, Angelo R; Quintans-Júnior, Lucindo J

    2010-01-01

    Physicochemical characterization and antinociceptive and anti-inflammatory activities of atranorin (AT) extracted from Cladina kalbii Ahti in formalin- and capsaicin-induced orofacial pain and anti-inflammatory tests in rodents were studied. Physicochemical characterization showed that AT has the general formula C19H18O8. Male Swiss mice were pretreated with AT (100, 200, and 400 mg/kg, i.p.), morphine (3 mg/kg, i.p.), or vehicle (0.9% saline with two drops of 0.2% Tween 80) before formalin (20 microl, 2%) or capsaicin (20 microl, 2.5 microg) were injected into the right vibrissa. Our results showed that i.p. treatment with AT displayed marked inhibitory effects in different orofacial pain tests in mice. AT (400 mg/kg, i.p.) was effective in reducing the nociceptive face-rubbing behavioural response in both phases of the formalin test, which was also naloxone-sensitive. Additionally, AT produced a significant antinociceptive effect at all doses in the capsaicin test. Such results were unlikely to be provoked by motor abnormality, since AT-treated mice exhibited no performance alteration on the rota rod apparatus. AT exhibited significant anti-inflammatory activity in the acute model of inflammation (leukocyte migration to the peritoneal cavity), carrageenan- and arachidonic acid-induced hind paw edema in rats. Additionally, AT exhibited a dose-dependent antioxidant activity in vitro, as assessed by total radical-trapping antioxidant parameter and total antioxidant reactivity assays. All these findings suggest that AT might represent an important tool for the management of orofacial pain and/or inflammatory disorders.

  7. Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode (AMOLED) Environmental Test Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salazar, George A.

    2013-01-01

    This report focuses on the limited environmental testing of the AMOLED display performed as an engineering evaluation by The NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC)-specifically. EMI. Thermal Vac, and radiation tests. The AMOLED display is an active-matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) technology. The testing provided an initial understanding of the technology and its suitability for space applications. Relative to light emitting diode (LED) displays or liquid crystal displays (LCDs), AMOLED displays provide a superior viewing experience even though they are much lighter and smaller, produce higher contrast ratio and richer colors, and require less power to operate than LCDs. However, AMOLED technology has not been demonstrated in a space environment. Therefore, some risks with the technology must be addressed before they can be seriously considered for human spaceflight. The environmental tests provided preliminary performance data on the ability of the display technology to handle some of the simulated induced space/spacecraft environments that an AMOLED display will see during a spacecraft certification test program. This engineering evaluation is part of a Space Act Agreement (SM) between The NASA/JSC and Honeywell International (HI) as a collaborative effort to evaluate the potential use of AMOLED technology for future human spaceflight missions- both government-led and commercial. Under this SM, HI is responsible for doing optical performance evaluation, as well as temperature and touch screen studies. The NASA/JSC is responsible for performing environmental testing comprised of EMI, Thermal Vac, and radiation tests. Additionally, as part of the testing, limited optical data was acquired to assess performance as the display was subjected to the induced environments. The NASA will benefit from this engineering evaluation by understanding AMOLED suitability for future use in space as well as becoming a smarter buyer (or developer) of the technology. HI benefits

  8. Polyclonal B-cell activation reveals antibodies against human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) in HIV-1-seronegative individuals.

    PubMed Central

    Jehuda-Cohen, T; Slade, B A; Powell, J D; Villinger, F; De, B; Folks, T M; McClure, H M; Sell, K W; Ahmed-Ansari, A

    1990-01-01

    Identification of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-infected individuals is of paramount importance for the control of the spread of AIDS worldwide. Currently, the vast majority of screening centers throughout the world rely on serological techniques. As such, clinically asymptomatic but HIV-infected, seronegative individuals are rarely identified. In this report we show that 18% (30/165) of seronegative individuals who were considered to be a unique cohort of patients at high risk for HIV infection had circulating B cells that, upon in vitro polyclonal activation with pokeweed mitogen, produced antibodies reactive with HIV. Furthermore, polymerase chain reaction analysis of DNA obtained from aliquots of the peripheral blood mononuclear cells from these seronegative but pokeweed mitogen assay-positive individuals tested revealed the presence of HIV-specific sequences in a significant number of samples. In addition, depletion of CD8+ T cells from peripheral blood mononuclear cells of HIV-1-seronegative individuals prior to in vitro culture with pokeweed mitogen resulted in increased sensitivity for detecting HIV-reactive antibodies. This assay has obvious epidemiological implications, especially in the case of high-risk groups, and also provides a simple technique to enhance detection of HIV-infected individuals. Of further interest is the determination of the mechanisms related to the lack of HIV-specific antibodies in the serum of these infected individuals. Images PMID:2111024

  9. Active Blade Vibration Control Being Developed and Tested

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Dexter

    2003-01-01

    Gas turbine engines are currently being designed to have increased performance, lower weight and manufacturing costs, and higher reliability. Consequently, turbomachinery components, such as turbine and compressor blades, have designs that are susceptible to new vibration problems and eventual in-service failure due to high-cycle fatigue. To address this problem, researchers at the NASA Glenn Research Center are developing and testing innovative active blade vibration control concepts. Preliminary results of using an active blade vibration control system, involving a rotor supported by an active magnetic bearing in Glenn's Dynamic Spin Rig, indicate promising results (see the photograph). Active blade vibration control was achieved using feedback of blade strain gauge signals within the magnetic bearing control loop. The vibration amplitude was reduced substantially (see the graphs). Also, vibration amplitude amplification was demonstrated; this could be used to enhance structural mode identification, if desired. These results were for a nonrotating two-bladed disk. Tests for rotating blades are planned. Current and future active blade vibration control research is planned to use a fully magnetically suspended rotor and smart materials. For the fully magnetically suspended rotor work, three magnetic bearings (two radial and one axial) will be used as actuators instead of one magnetic bearing. This will allow additional degrees of freedom to be used for control. For the smart materials work, control effectors located on and off the blade will be considered. Piezoelectric materials will be considered for on-the-blade actuation, and actuator placement on a stator vane, or other nearby structure, will be investigated for off-the-blade actuation. Initial work will focus on determining the feasibility of these methods by performing basic analysis and simple experiments involving feedback control.

  10. The Vanderbilt Expertise Test reveals domain-general and domain-specific sex effects in object recognition.

    PubMed

    McGugin, Rankin W; Richler, Jennifer J; Herzmann, Grit; Speegle, Magen; Gauthier, Isabel

    2012-09-15

    Individual differences in face recognition are often contrasted with differences in object recognition using a single object category. Likewise, individual differences in perceptual expertise for a given object domain have typically been measured relative to only a single category baseline. In Experiment 1, we present a new test of object recognition, the Vanderbilt Expertise Test (VET), which is comparable in methods to the Cambridge Face Memory Task (CFMT) but uses eight different object categories. Principal component analysis reveals that the underlying structure of the VET can be largely explained by two independent factors, which demonstrate good reliability and capture interesting sex differences inherent in the VET structure. In Experiment 2, we show how the VET can be used to separate domain-specific from domain-general contributions to a standard measure of perceptual expertise. While domain-specific contributions are found for car matching for both men and women and for plane matching in men, women in this sample appear to use more domain-general strategies to match planes. In Experiment 3, we use the VET to demonstrate that holistic processing of faces predicts face recognition independently of general object recognition ability, which has a sex-specific contribution to face recognition. Overall, the results suggest that the VET is a reliable and valid measure of object recognition abilities and can measure both domain-general skills and domain-specific expertise, which were both found to depend on the sex of observers.

  11. Precursory Activity Before Larger Events in Greece Revealed by Aggregated Seismicity Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamaki, Angeliki K.; Roberts, Roland G.

    2017-03-01

    We investigate the seismicity rate behaviour in and around Greece during 2009, seeking significant changes in rate preceding larger events. For individual larger events it is difficult to clearly distinguish precursory rate changes from other, possibly unrelated, variations in seismicity. However, when we aggregate seismicity data occurring within a radius of 10 km and in a 50-day window prior to earthquakes with, e.g. magnitude ≥3.5, the resulting aggregated time series show a clearly increasing trend starting 2-3 weeks prior to the "mainshock" time. We apply statistical tests to investigate if the observed behaviour may be simply consistent with random (poissonian) variations, or, as some earlier studies suggest, with clustering in the sense that high activity rates at some time may imply increased rates later, and thus (randomly) greater probability of larger coming events than for periods of lower seismicity. In this case, rate increases have little useful predictive power. Using data from the entire catalogue, the aggregated rate changes before larger events are clearly and strongly statistically significant and cannot be explained by such clustering. To test this we choose events at random from the catalogue as potential "mainshocks". The events preceding the randomly chosen earthquakes show less pronounced rate increases compared to the observed rate changes prior to larger events. Similar behaviour is observed in data sub-sets. However, statistical confidence decreases for geographical subsets containing few "mainshocks" as it does when data are weighted such that "mainshocks" with many preceding events are strongly downweighted relative to those with fewer. The analyses suggest that genuine changes in aggregated rate do occur prior to larger events and that this behaviour is not due to a small number of mainshocks with many preceding events dominating the analysis. It does not automatically follow that it will be possible to routinely observe precursory

  12. The basophil activation test: a sensitive test in the diagnosis of allergic immediate hypersensitivity to pristinamycin.

    PubMed

    Viel, Sébastien; Garnier, Lorna; Joly, Elodie; Rouzaire, Paul; Nosbaum, Audrey; Pralong, Pauline; Faudel, Amélie; Rioufol, Catherine; Bienvenu, Françoise; Bienvenu, Jacques; Berard, Frédéric

    2015-01-01

    Immediate hypersensitivity (IHS) reactions to macrolides and to macrolide-derived antibiotics like pristinamycin are uncommon. In this context, there is little data available to appreciate the true value of biological tools regarding the diagnosis of immediate allergy to pristinamycin. Here we assess the clinical usefulness of the basophil activation test (BAT) to differentiate allergic from nonallergic IHS to pristinamycin. Thirty-six patients were tested with skin tests as the gold standard and BAT. The BAT achieved a sensitivity of 76% and a specificity of 100%, implying an absence of false positive results. Multicenter studies remain to be performed to better define the sensitivity, specificity and interlaboratory variation of BAT in the diagnosis of allergy to pristinamycin and macrolides.

  13. Information Technology Measurement and Testing Activities at NIST

    PubMed Central

    Hogan, Michael D.; Carnahan, Lisa J.; Carpenter, Robert J.; Flater, David W.; Fowler, James E.; Frechette, Simon P.; Gray, Martha M.; Johnson, L. Arnold; McCabe, R. Michael; Montgomery, Douglas; Radack, Shirley M.; Rosenthal, Robert; Shakarji, Craig M.

    2001-01-01

    Our high technology society continues to rely more and more upon sophisticated measurements, technical standards, and associated testing activities. This was true for the industrial society of the 20th century and remains true for the information society of the 21st century. Over the last half of the 20th century, information technology (IT) has been a powerful agent of change in almost every sector of the economy. The complexity and rapidly changing nature of IT have presented unique technical challenges to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and to the scientific measurement community in developing a sound measurement and testing infrastructure for IT. This measurement and testing infrastructure for the important non-physical and non-chemical properties associated with complex IT systems is still in an early stage of development. This paper explains key terms and concepts of IT metrology, briefly reviews the history of the National Bureau of Standards/National Institute of Standards and Technology (NBS/NIST) in the field of IT, and reviews NIST’s current capabilities and work in measurement and testing for IT. It concludes with a look at what is likely to occur in the field of IT over the next ten years and what metrology roles NIST is likely to play. PMID:27500026

  14. Information Technology Measurement and Testing Activities at NIST.

    PubMed

    Hogan, M D; Carnahan, L J; Carpenter, R J; Flater, D W; Fowler, J E; Frechette, S P; Gray, M M; Johnson, L A; McCabe, R M; Montgomery, D; Radack, S M; Rosenthal, R; Shakarji, C M

    2001-01-01

    Our high technology society continues to rely more and more upon sophisticated measurements, technical standards, and associated testing activities. This was true for the industrial society of the 20th century and remains true for the information society of the 21st century. Over the last half of the 20th century, information technology (IT) has been a powerful agent of change in almost every sector of the economy. The complexity and rapidly changing nature of IT have presented unique technical challenges to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and to the scientific measurement community in developing a sound measurement and testing infrastructure for IT. This measurement and testing infrastructure for the important non-physical and non-chemical properties associated with complex IT systems is still in an early stage of development. This paper explains key terms and concepts of IT metrology, briefly reviews the history of the National Bureau of Standards/National Institute of Standards and Technology (NBS/NIST) in the field of IT, and reviews NIST's current capabilities and work in measurement and testing for IT. It concludes with a look at what is likely to occur in the field of IT over the next ten years and what metrology roles NIST is likely to play.

  15. Boron-10 ABUNCL Prototype Models And Initial Active Testing

    SciTech Connect

    Kouzes, Richard T.; Ely, James H.; Lintereur, Azaree T.; Siciliano, Edward R.

    2013-04-23

    The Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Safeguards and Security (NA-241) is supporting the project Coincidence Counting With Boron-Based Alternative Neutron Detection Technology at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for the development of a 3He proportional counter alternative neutron coincidence counter. The goal of this project is to design, build and demonstrate a system based upon 10B-lined proportional tubes in a configuration typical for 3He-based coincidence counter applications. This report provides results from MCNPX model simulations and initial testing of the active mode variation of the Alternative Boron-Based Uranium Neutron Coincidence Collar (ABUNCL) design built by General Electric Reuter-Stokes. Initial experimental testing of the as-delivered passive ABUNCL was previously reported.

  16. Uranium Adsorption on Granular Activated Carbon – Batch Testing

    SciTech Connect

    Parker, Kent E.; Golovich, Elizabeth C.; Wellman, Dawn M.

    2013-09-01

    The uranium adsorption performance of two activated carbon samples (Tusaar Lot B-64, Tusaar ER2-189A) was tested using unadjusted source water from well 299-W19-36. These batch tests support ongoing performance optimization efforts to use the best material for uranium treatment in the Hanford Site 200 West Area groundwater pump-and-treat system. A linear response of uranium loading as a function of the solution-to-solid ratio was observed for both materials. Kd values ranged from ~380,000 to >1,900,000 ml/g for the B-64 material and ~200,000 to >1,900,000 ml/g for the ER2-189A material. Uranium loading values ranged from 10.4 to 41.6 μg/g for the two Tusaar materials.

  17. Utilisation of Wearable Computing for Space Programmes Test Activities Optimasation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basso, V.; Lazzari, D.; Alemanni, M.

    2004-08-01

    New technologies are assuming a relevant importance in the Space business domain also in the Assembly Integration and Test (AIT) activities allowing process optimization and capability that were unthinkable only few years ago. This paper has the aim to describe Alenia Spazio (ALS) gained experience on the remote interaction techniques as a results of collaborations established both on European Communities (EC) initiatives, with Alenia Aeronautica (ALA) and Politecnico of Torino (POLITO). The H/W and S/W components performances increase and costs reduction due to the home computing massive utilization (especially demanded by the games business) together with the network technology possibility (offered by the web as well as the hi-speed links and the wireless communications) allow today to re-think the traditional AIT process activities in the light of the multimedia data exchange: graphical, voice video and by sure more in the future. Aerospace business confirm its innovation vocation which in the year '80 represents the cradle of the CAD systems and today is oriented to the 3D data visualization/ interaction technologies and remote visualisation/ interaction in collaborative way on a much more user friendly bases (i.e. not for specialists). Fig. 1 collects AIT extended scenario studied and adopted by ALS in these years. ALS experimented two possibilities of remote visualization/interaction: Portable [e.g. Fig.2 Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), Wearable] and walls (e.g.VR-Lab) screens as both 2D/3D visualisation and interaction devices which could support many types of traditional (mainly based on EGSE and PDM/CAD utilisation/reports) company internal AIT applications: 1. design review support 2. facility management 3. storage management 4. personnel training 5. integration sequences definition 6. assembly and test operations follow up 7. documentation review and external access to AIT activities for remote operations (e.g. tele-testing) EGSE Portable Clean room

  18. Which is preferable for orthostatic hypotension diagnosis in older adults: active standing test or head-up tilt table test?

    PubMed Central

    Aydin, Ali Ekrem; Soysal, Pinar; Isik, Ahmet Turan

    2017-01-01

    Background Correct evaluation of orthostatic hypotension (OH) is crucial in geriatric practice, since OH is associated with mortality and morbidity. The study aimed to determine the most appropriate method for measuring blood pressure in transition from supine to upright position in order to diagnose OH in older adults. Methods Active standing test (AST) and head-up tilt table (HUT) test as well as comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA), including mini-mental state examination or the cognitive state test, mini-nutritional assessment, basic and instrumental activities of daily living, and Tinetti performance-oriented mobility assessment indexes, were performed in 290 geriatric patients. Results The prevalence of OH during HUT and AST was 19% and 37%, respectively. In patients with OH during HUT, the frequency of dementia and recurrent falls were higher (P<0.05); on the other hand, the levels of serum vitamin D and albumin and estimated glomerular filtration rate were lower (P<0.05). However, all these parameters for OH during AST were not significant (P>0.05). Comparison of the groups according to CGA measurements revealed significant differences in terms of cognition, nutritional status, activities of daily life, and balance function in patients with OH only during HUT (P<0.05), but not during AST (P>0.05). The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive values of AST were 49.0%, 65.5%, 25.0%, and 84.6% respectively, according to HUT. Conclusion The results suggest that orthostatic blood pressure changes determined by HUT might be of higher clinical significance than that by AST in older adults. It might be important that the evaluation of OH by HUT should be included in daily geriatric practice. PMID:28182163

  19. Standards Development Activities at White Sands Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baker, D. L.; Beeson, H. D.; Saulsberry, R. L.; Julien, H. L.; Woods, S. S.

    2003-01-01

    The development of standards and standard activities at the JSC White Sands Test Facility (WSTF) has been expanded to include the transfer of technology and standards to voluntary consensus organizations in five technical areas of importance to NASA. This effort is in direct response to the National Technology Transfer Act designed to accelerate transfer of technology to industry and promote government-industry partnerships. Technology transfer is especially important for WSTF, whose longterm mission has been to develop and provide vital propellant safety and hazards information to aerospace designers, operations personnel, and safety personnel. Meeting this mission is being accomplished through the preparation of consensus guidelines and standards, propellant hazards analysis protocols, and safety courses for the propellant use of hydrogen, oxygen, and hypergols, as well as the design and inspection of spacecraft pressure vessels and the use of pyrovalves in spacecraft propulsion systems. The overall WSTF technology transfer program is described and the current status of technology transfer activities are summarized.

  20. Selective activation of SHP2 activity by cisplatin revealed by a novel chemical probe-based assay

    SciTech Connect

    Kuo, Chun-Chen; Chu, Chi-Yuan; Lin, Jing-Jer; Lo, Lee-Chiang

    2010-01-01

    Src homology-2 (SH2) domain-containing phosphatase 2 (SHP2) is known to participate in several different signaling pathways to mediate cell growth, survival, migration, and differentiation. However, due to the lack of proper analytical tools, it is unclear whether the phosphatase activity of SHP2 is activated in most studies. We have previously developed an activity-based probe LCL2 that formed covalent linkage with catalytically active protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs). Here, by combining LCL2 with a SHP2 specific antibody, we established an assay system that enables the direct monitoring of SHP2 activity upon cisplatin treatment of cancer cells. The protocol is advantageous over conventional colorimetric or in-gel PTP assays as it is specific and does not require the use of radioisotope reagents. Using this assay, we found SHP2 activity was selectively activated by cisplatin. Moreover, the activation of SHP2 appeared to be specific for cisplatin as other DNA damage agents failed to activate the activity. Although the role of SHP2 activation by cisplatin treatments is still unclear to us, our results provide the first direct evidence for the activation of SHP2 during cisplatin treatments. More importantly, the concept of using activity-based probe in conjunction with target-specific antibodies could be extended to other enzyme classes.

  1. Young asteroidal fluid activity revealed by absolute age from apatite in carbonaceous chondrite.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ai-Cheng; Li, Qiu-Li; Yurimoto, Hisayoshi; Sakamoto, Naoya; Li, Xian-Hua; Hu, Sen; Lin, Yang-Ting; Wang, Ru-Cheng

    2016-09-29

    Chondritic meteorites, consisting of the materials that have formed in the early solar system (ESS), have been affected by late thermal events and fluid activity to various degrees. Determining the timing of fluid activity in ESS is of fundamental importance for understanding the nature, formation, evolution and significance of fluid activity in ESS. Previous investigations have determined the relative ages of fluid activity with short-lived isotope systematics. Here we report an absolute (207)Pb/(206)Pb isochron age (4,450±50 Ma) of apatite from Dar al Gani (DaG) 978, a type ∼3.5, ungrouped carbonaceous chondrite. The petrographic, mineralogical and geochemical features suggest that the apatite in DaG 978 should have formed during metamorphism in the presence of a fluid. Therefore, the apatite age represents an absolute age for fluid activity in an asteroidal setting. An impact event could have provided the heat to activate this young fluid activity in ESS.

  2. Young asteroidal fluid activity revealed by absolute age from apatite in carbonaceous chondrite

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ai-Cheng; Li, Qiu-Li; Yurimoto, Hisayoshi; Sakamoto, Naoya; Li, Xian-Hua; Hu, Sen; Lin, Yang-Ting; Wang, Ru-Cheng

    2016-09-01

    Chondritic meteorites, consisting of the materials that have formed in the early solar system (ESS), have been affected by late thermal events and fluid activity to various degrees. Determining the timing of fluid activity in ESS is of fundamental importance for understanding the nature, formation, evolution and significance of fluid activity in ESS. Previous investigations have determined the relative ages of fluid activity with short-lived isotope systematics. Here we report an absolute 207Pb/206Pb isochron age (4,450+/-50 Ma) of apatite from Dar al Gani (DaG) 978, a type ~3.5, ungrouped carbonaceous chondrite. The petrographic, mineralogical and geochemical features suggest that the apatite in DaG 978 should have formed during metamorphism in the presence of a fluid. Therefore, the apatite age represents an absolute age for fluid activity in an asteroidal setting. An impact event could have provided the heat to activate this young fluid activity in ESS.

  3. Marine Mammal Active Sonar Test 2004 (MAST 2004)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stein, Peter J.; Vandiver, Amy; Edelson, Geoffrey S.; Frankel, Adam S.; Clark, Christopher W.

    2004-05-01

    The Marine Mammal Active Sonar Test was conducted in January 2004 off the central California coast during the gray whale migration. The purpose of the test was to collect data to significantly advance active sonar detection, classification, and tracking of marine mammals out to ranges of 1 mile. The R/V NEW HORIZON was moored in the migration path. Two different sonar systems operating between 210 and 220 dB were deployed off the vessel, the IMAPS phased array sonar system that operates from 20-30 kHz and the MAST mechanical system that uses rotating parabolic transducers operating from 30 to 40 kHz. Marine mammal observers were deployed on the bluffs overlooking the experiment and aboard the NEW HORIZON. The observers tracked the whales using electronic theodelites, providing ground truth for the sonar systems. They also looked for any severe reactions from the animals, and called for a shutdown if any marine mammals were observed within 100 m of the sonar. Here, we discuss the experiment and the results to date, including any reaction of the whales to the sonar system. We will also touch on the legal battle to conduct the experiment, and lessons learned.

  4. Tc-99 Adsorption on Selected Activated Carbons - Batch Testing Results

    SciTech Connect

    Mattigod, Shas V.; Wellman, Dawn M.; Golovich, Elizabeth C.; Cordova, Elsa A.; Smith, Ronald M.

    2010-12-01

    CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company (CHPRC) is currently developing a 200-West Area groundwater pump-and-treat system as the remedial action selected under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act Record of Decision for Operable Unit (OU) 200-ZP-1. This report documents the results of treatability tests Pacific Northwest National Laboratory researchers conducted to quantify the ability of selected activated carbon products (or carbons) to adsorb technetium-99 (Tc-99) from 200-West Area groundwater. The Tc-99 adsorption performance of seven activated carbons (J177601 Calgon Fitrasorb 400, J177606 Siemens AC1230AWC, J177609 Carbon Resources CR-1240-AW, J177611 General Carbon GC20X50, J177612 Norit GAC830, J177613 Norit GAC830, and J177617 Nucon LW1230) were evaluated using water from well 299-W19-36. Four of the best performing carbons (J177606 Siemens AC1230AWC, J177609 Carbon Resources CR-1240-AW, J177611 General Carbon GC20X50, and J177613 Norit GAC830) were selected for batch isotherm testing. The batch isotherm tests on four of the selected carbons indicated that under lower nitrate concentration conditions (382 mg/L), Kd values ranged from 6,000 to 20,000 mL/g. In comparison. Under higher nitrate (750 mg/L) conditions, there was a measureable decrease in Tc-99 adsorption with Kd values ranging from 3,000 to 7,000 mL/g. The adsorption data fit both the Langmuir and the Freundlich equations. Supplemental tests were conducted using the two carbons that demonstrated the highest adsorption capacity to resolve the issue of the best fit isotherm. These tests indicated that Langmuir isotherms provided the best fit for Tc-99 adsorption under low nitrate concentration conditions. At the design basis concentration of Tc 0.865 µg/L(14,700 pCi/L), the predicted Kd values from using Langmuir isotherm constants were 5,980 mL/g and 6,870 mL/g for for the two carbons. These Kd values did not meet the target Kd value of 9,000 mL/g. Tests

  5. A biosensor for the protease TACE reveals actin damage induced TACE activation

    PubMed Central

    Chapnick, Douglas A.; Bunker, Eric; Liu, Xuedong

    2016-01-01

    Ligand shedding has gained increased attention as a major posttranslational modification mechanism used by cells to respond to diverse environmental conditions. The TACEadam17 protease is a critical mediator of such ligand shedding, regulating the maturation and release of an impressive range of extracellular substrates that drive diverse cellular responses. Exactly how this protease is itself activated remains unclear, in part due to the lack of available tools to measure TACE activity with temporal and spatial resolution in live cells. We have developed a FRET based biosensor for TACE activity (TSen), which is capable of reporting TACE activation kinetics in live cells with a high degree of specificity. TSen was used in combination with chemical biology to probe the dependence of various means of TACE activation on p38 and Erk kinase activities, as well as to identify a novel connection between actin cytoskeletal disruption and TACE activation. Such cytoskeletal disruption leads to rapid and robust TACE activation in some cell types and accumulation of TACE at the plasma membrane, allowing for increased cleavage of endogenous substrates. Our study highlights both the versatility of TSen as a tool to understand the mechanisms of TACE activation in live cells and the importance of actin cytoskeletal integrity as a modulator of TACE activity. PMID:25714465

  6. Electromyographic activation reveals cortical and sub-cortical dissociation during emergence from general anesthesia.

    PubMed

    Hight, Darren F; Voss, Logan J; García, Paul S; Sleigh, Jamie W

    2016-07-21

    During emergence from anesthesia patients regain their muscle tone (EMG). In a typical population of surgical patients the actual volatile gas anesthetic concentrations in the brain (CeMAC) at which EMG activation occurs remains unknown, as is whether EMG activation at higher CeMACs is correlated with subsequent severe pain, or with cortical activation. Electroencephalographic (EEG) and EMG activity was recorded from the forehead of 273 patients emerging from general anesthesia following surgery. We determined CeMAC at time of EMG activation and at return of consciousness. Pain was assessed immediately after return of consciousness using an 11 point numerical rating scale. The onset of EMG activation during emergence was associated with neither discernible muscle movement nor with the presence of exogenous stimulation in half the patients. EMG activation could be modelled as two distinct processes; termed high- and low-CeMAC (occurring higher or lower than 0.07 CeMAC). Low-CeMAC activation was typically associated with simultaneous EMG activation and consciousness, and the presence of a laryngeal mask. In contrast, high-CeMAC EMG activation occurred independently of return of consciousness, and was not associated with severe post-operative pain, but was more common in the presence of an endotracheal tube. Patients emerging from general anesthesia with an endotracheal tube in place are more likely to have an EMG activation at higher CeMAC concentrations. These activations are not associated with subsequent high-pain, nor with cortical arousal, as evidenced by continuing delta waves in the EEG. Conversely, patients emerging from general anesthesia with a laryngeal mask demonstrate marked neural inertia-EMG activation occurs at a low CeMAC, and is closely temporally associated with return of consciousness.

  7. German National Galileo Public Regulated Service (PRS) Testing Activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Habrich, Heinz; Söhne, Wolfgang

    2013-04-01

    The European Global Navigation System (GNSS) Galileo is going to be established in the near future. Currently, four satellites are in place forming the In-Orbit-Testing (IOT) phase. Within the next years, the constellation will be filled. Full Operational Capability (FOC) will be reached 2019. Beside the Open Service (OS) which is comparable to other OS of existing GNSS, e.g., GPS C/A, there is a so-called Public Regulated Service (PRS) included in the IOT satellites already. The PRS will have improved robustness, i.e. robust signals which will be resistant against involuntary interferences, jamming and spoofing. The PRS signal is encrypted and there will be a restricted access to authorized users, e.g. safety and emergency services, authorities with security task, critical infrastructure organizations etc. The access to the PRS which will be controlled through a special key management will be managed and supervised within the European Union (EU) Member States (MS) by national authorities, the Competent PRS Authority (CPA). But a set of Common Minimum Standards (CMS) will define the minimum requirements applicable to each PRS participant. Nevertheless, each MS is responsible for its national key management. This presentation will inform about the testing activities for Galileo PRS in Germany. The coarse concept for the testing is explained, the schedule is outlined. Finally, the paper will formulate some expectations to the Galileo PRS, e.g. for international cooperation.

  8. A FRET biosensor reveals spatiotemporal activation and functions of aurora kinase A in living cells.

    PubMed

    Bertolin, Giulia; Sizaire, Florian; Herbomel, Gaëtan; Reboutier, David; Prigent, Claude; Tramier, Marc

    2016-09-14

    Overexpression of AURKA is a major hallmark of epithelial cancers. It encodes the multifunctional serine/threonine kinase aurora A, which is activated at metaphase and is required for cell cycle progression; assessing its activation in living cells is mandatory for next-generation drug design. We describe here a Förster's resonance energy transfer (FRET) biosensor detecting the conformational changes of aurora kinase A induced by its autophosphorylation on Thr288. The biosensor functionally replaces the endogenous kinase in cells and allows the activation of the kinase to be followed throughout the cell cycle. Inhibiting the catalytic activity of the kinase prevents the conformational changes of the biosensor. Using this approach, we discover that aurora kinase A activates during G1 to regulate the stability of microtubules in cooperation with TPX2 and CEP192. These results demonstrate that the aurora kinase A biosensor is a powerful tool to identify new regulatory pathways controlling aurora kinase A activation.

  9. Alanine-Scanning Mutational Analysis of Durancin GL Reveals Residues Important for Its Antimicrobial Activity.

    PubMed

    Ju, Xingrong; Chen, Xinquan; Du, Lihui; Wu, Xueyou; Liu, Fang; Yuan, Jian

    2015-07-22

    Durancin GL is a novel class IIa bacteriocin with 43 residues produced by Enterococcus durans 41D. This bacteriocin demonstrates narrow inhibition spectrum and potent antimicrobial activity against several Listeria monocytogenes strains, including nisin-resistant L. monocytogenes NR30. A systematic alanine-scanning mutational analysis with site-directed mutagenesis was performed to analyze durancin GL residues important for antimicrobial activity and specificity. Results showed that three mutations lost their antimicrobial activity, ten mutations demonstrated a decreased effect on the activity, and seven mutations exhibited relatively high activity. With regard to inhibitory spectrum, four mutants demonstrated a narrower antimicrobial spectrum than wild-type durancin GL. Another four mutants displayed a broader target cell spectrum and increased potency relative to wild-type durancin GL. These findings broaden our understanding of durancin GL residues important for its antimicrobial activity and contribute to future rational design of variants with increased potency.

  10. A FRET biosensor reveals spatiotemporal activation and functions of aurora kinase A in living cells

    PubMed Central

    Bertolin, Giulia; Sizaire, Florian; Herbomel, Gaëtan; Reboutier, David; Prigent, Claude; Tramier, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Overexpression of AURKA is a major hallmark of epithelial cancers. It encodes the multifunctional serine/threonine kinase aurora A, which is activated at metaphase and is required for cell cycle progression; assessing its activation in living cells is mandatory for next-generation drug design. We describe here a Förster's resonance energy transfer (FRET) biosensor detecting the conformational changes of aurora kinase A induced by its autophosphorylation on Thr288. The biosensor functionally replaces the endogenous kinase in cells and allows the activation of the kinase to be followed throughout the cell cycle. Inhibiting the catalytic activity of the kinase prevents the conformational changes of the biosensor. Using this approach, we discover that aurora kinase A activates during G1 to regulate the stability of microtubules in cooperation with TPX2 and CEP192. These results demonstrate that the aurora kinase A biosensor is a powerful tool to identify new regulatory pathways controlling aurora kinase A activation. PMID:27624869

  11. Laser active thermography for non-destructive testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Semerok, A.; Grisolia, C.; Fomichev, S. V.; Thro, P.-Y.

    2013-11-01

    Thermography methods have found their applications in different fields of human activity. The non-destructive feature of these methods along with the additional advantage by automated remote control and tests of nuclear installations without personnel attendance in the contaminated zone are of particular interest. Laser active pyrometry and laser lock-in thermography for in situ non-destructive characterization of micrometric layers on graphite substrates from European tokamaks were under extensive experimental and theoretical studies in CEA (France). The studies were aimed to obtain layer characterization with cross-checking the layer thermal contact coefficients determined by active laser pyrometry and lock-in thermography. The experimental installation comprised a Nd-YAG pulsed repetition rate laser (1 Hz - 10 kHz repetition rate frequency, homogeneous spot) and a home-made pyrometer system based on two pyrometers for the temperature measurements in 500 - 2600 K range. For both methods, the layer characterization was provided by the best fit of the experimental results and simulations. The layer thermal contact coefficients determined by both methods were quite comparable. Though there was no gain in the measurements accuracy, lock-in measurements have proved their advantage as being much more rapid. The obtained experimental and theoretical results are presented. Some practical applications and possible improvements of the methods are discussed.

  12. Spatial resolution of the pain system: a proximal-to-distal gradient of sensitivity revealed with psychophysical testing.

    PubMed

    Weissman-Fogel, Irit; Brayer-Zwi, Nurit; Defrin, Ruth

    2012-01-01

    The spatial resolution of the pain system has not been studied in depth, and results are contradictory regarding the gradient of spatial resolution. Microneurographic recordings have revealed smaller receptive fields and higher density of nociceptors in more distal than proximal leg regions, whereas histological studies report higher density of C-fibers in more proximal than distal body regions. Due to this controversy, we conducted various psychophysical tests in order to examine the nociceptive spatial resolution and its gradient. Heat-pain threshold (HPT), perceived pain intensity, spatial summation (SS) of pain, two-point discrimination (2PD) of pain, and pain localization were measured in four body regions: upper back, thigh, lower leg, and foot. The highest HPT was demonstrated in the lower leg as compared with more proximal regions (P < 0.0001). SS was observed in all the regions and was found to be smallest in the foot (P < 0.05). The smallest 2PD and localization distances were found in the foot (P < 0.01) as compared with the lower leg and upper back. It appears that the nociceptive spatial resolution has a proximal-to-distal pattern of performance, namely that the spatial resolution of pain is finer in more distal than proximal body regions, similar to that of the touch system.

  13. A comprehensive custom panel design for routine hereditary cancer testing: preserving control, improving diagnostics and revealing a complex variation landscape.

    PubMed

    Castellanos, Elisabeth; Gel, Bernat; Rosas, Inma; Tornero, Eva; Santín, Sheila; Pluvinet, Raquel; Velasco, Juan; Sumoy, Lauro; Del Valle, Jesús; Perucho, Manuel; Blanco, Ignacio; Navarro, Matilde; Brunet, Joan; Pineda, Marta; Feliubadaló, Lidia; Capellá, Gabi; Lázaro, Conxi; Serra, Eduard

    2017-01-04

    We wanted to implement an NGS strategy to globally analyze hereditary cancer with diagnostic quality while retaining the same degree of understanding and control we had in pre-NGS strategies. To do this, we developed the I2HCP panel, a custom bait library covering 122 hereditary cancer genes. We improved bait design, tested different NGS platforms and created a clinically driven custom data analysis pipeline. The I2HCP panel was developed using a training set of hereditary colorectal cancer, hereditary breast and ovarian cancer and neurofibromatosis patients and reached an accuracy, analytical sensitivity and specificity greater than 99%, which was maintained in a validation set. I2HCP changed our diagnostic approach, involving clinicians and a genetic diagnostics team from panel design to reporting. The new strategy improved diagnostic sensitivity, solved uncertain clinical diagnoses and identified mutations in new genes. We assessed the genetic variation in the complete set of hereditary cancer genes, revealing a complex variation landscape that coexists with the disease-causing mutation. We developed, validated and implemented a custom NGS-based strategy for hereditary cancer diagnostics that improved our previous workflows. Additionally, the existence of a rich genetic variation in hereditary cancer genes favors the use of this panel to investigate their role in cancer risk.

  14. A comprehensive custom panel design for routine hereditary cancer testing: preserving control, improving diagnostics and revealing a complex variation landscape

    PubMed Central

    Castellanos, Elisabeth; Gel, Bernat; Rosas, Inma; Tornero, Eva; Santín, Sheila; Pluvinet, Raquel; Velasco, Juan; Sumoy, Lauro; del Valle, Jesús; Perucho, Manuel; Blanco, Ignacio; Navarro, Matilde; Brunet, Joan; Pineda, Marta; Feliubadaló, Lidia; Capellá, Gabi; Lázaro, Conxi; Serra, Eduard

    2017-01-01

    We wanted to implement an NGS strategy to globally analyze hereditary cancer with diagnostic quality while retaining the same degree of understanding and control we had in pre-NGS strategies. To do this, we developed the I2HCP panel, a custom bait library covering 122 hereditary cancer genes. We improved bait design, tested different NGS platforms and created a clinically driven custom data analysis pipeline. The I2HCP panel was developed using a training set of hereditary colorectal cancer, hereditary breast and ovarian cancer and neurofibromatosis patients and reached an accuracy, analytical sensitivity and specificity greater than 99%, which was maintained in a validation set. I2HCP changed our diagnostic approach, involving clinicians and a genetic diagnostics team from panel design to reporting. The new strategy improved diagnostic sensitivity, solved uncertain clinical diagnoses and identified mutations in new genes. We assessed the genetic variation in the complete set of hereditary cancer genes, revealing a complex variation landscape that coexists with the disease-causing mutation. We developed, validated and implemented a custom NGS-based strategy for hereditary cancer diagnostics that improved our previous workflows. Additionally, the existence of a rich genetic variation in hereditary cancer genes favors the use of this panel to investigate their role in cancer risk. PMID:28051113

  15. Gene expression profiles of prohibitin in testes of Octopus tankahkeei (ot-phb) revealing its possible role during spermiogenesis.

    PubMed

    Mao, Hai-Tao; Wang, Da-Hui; Lan, Zhou; Zhou, Hong; Yang, Wan-Xi

    2012-05-01

    Prohibitin is essential for intracellular homeostasis and stabilization of mitochondrial respiratory chain complexes. To explore its functions during spermiogenesis of Octopus tankahkeei (O. tankahkeei), we have cloned and sequenced the cDNA of this mammalian PHB homologue (termed ot-PHB) from the testes of O. tankahkeei. The 1165 bp ot-phb cDNA contains a 100 bp 5' UTR, a 882 bp open reading frame and a 183 bp 3' UTR. The putative ot-PHB protein owns a transmembrane domain from 6 to 31 amino acid (aa) and a putative PHB domain from 26 to 178 aa. Protein alignment demonstrated that ot-PHB had 73.3, 73.6, 74.0, 75.1, and 45.4% identity with its homologues in Homo sapiens, Mus muculus, Danio rerio, Xenopus tropicalis and Trypanosoma brucei, respectively. Tissue distribution profile analysis revealed its presence in all the tissues examined. In situ hybridization in spermiogenic cells demonstrated that ot-phb was expressed moderately at the beginning of the spermiogenesis. The abundance of transcripts increased in intermediate spermatids and in drastically remodeling final spermatids. In mature spermatozoa, the residuary transcripts concentrated around the chondriosomal mantle where mitochondria assemble around. In summary, the expression of ot-phb during spermiogenesis implicates a potential function of this protein during mitochondrial ubiquitination. It is the first time to implicate the role of prohibitin in cephalopod spermiogenesis.

  16. Equilibrium physics breakdown reveals the active nature of red blood cell flickering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turlier, Herve; Fedosov, Dmitry; Auth, Thorsten; Gov, Nir S.; Sykes, Cecile; Joanny, Jean-Francois; Gompper, Gerhard; Betz, Timo

    2015-03-01

    Red blood cell membrane flickering stimulated an abundant biological, biophysical and biochemical literature over the past 50 years. While the phenomenon has been interpreted as thermal fluctuations of the cell membrane, recent results suggest the involvement of metabolic processes. However, to date there is no direct and conclusive evidence that an active force drives membrane flickering. By comparing membrane undulations and active microrheology measurements on single human erythrocytes, we show that flickering is partly driven by an active metabolic process, as it does not satisfy the equilibrium fluctuation-dissipation relation on timescales slower than 100ms. Analytical and numerical models of the red blood cell reproduce experimental results. The analytical model assumes that membrane activity results from reversible binding of the elastic spectrin network to the lipid bilayer and predicts active fluctuations to increase with local curvature and extensional prestress in the cytoskeleton. Our mean-field calculation shows that the strength and kinetics of the binding activity regulates thereupon both passive and active mechanical properties of the red blood cell. Numerical simulations explore other possible origins of active forces on the membrane and predict coherent timescales for the molecular underlying metabolic processes.

  17. fMRI reveals neural activity overlap between adult and infant pain.

    PubMed

    Goksan, Sezgi; Hartley, Caroline; Emery, Faith; Cockrill, Naomi; Poorun, Ravi; Moultrie, Fiona; Rogers, Richard; Campbell, Jon; Sanders, Michael; Adams, Eleri; Clare, Stuart; Jenkinson, Mark; Tracey, Irene; Slater, Rebeccah

    2015-04-21

    Limited understanding of infant pain has led to its lack of recognition in clinical practice. While the network of brain regions that encode the affective and sensory aspects of adult pain are well described, the brain structures involved in infant nociceptive processing are completely unknown, meaning we cannot infer anything about the nature of the infant pain experience. Using fMRI we identified the network of brain regions that are active following acute noxious stimulation in newborn infants, and compared the activity to that observed in adults. Significant infant brain activity was observed in 18 of the 20 active adult brain regions but not in the infant amygdala or orbitofrontal cortex. Brain regions that encode sensory and affective components of pain are active in infants, suggesting that the infant pain experience closely resembles that seen in adults. This highlights the importance of developing effective pain management strategies in this vulnerable population.

  18. Functional mapping of protein kinase A reveals its importance in adult Schistosoma mansoni motor activity.

    PubMed

    de Saram, Paulu S R; Ressurreição, Margarida; Davies, Angela J; Rollinson, David; Emery, Aidan M; Walker, Anthony J

    2013-01-01

    Cyclic AMP (cAMP)-dependent protein kinase/protein kinase A (PKA) is the major transducer of cAMP signalling in eukaryotic cells. Here, using laser scanning confocal microscopy and 'smart' anti-phospho PKA antibodies that exclusively detect activated PKA, we provide a detailed in situ analysis of PKA signalling in intact adult Schistosoma mansoni, a causative agent of debilitating human intestinal schistosomiasis. In both adult male and female worms, activated PKA was consistently found associated with the tegument, oral and ventral suckers, oesophagus and somatic musculature. In addition, the seminal vesicle and gynaecophoric canal muscles of the male displayed activated PKA whereas in female worms activated PKA localized to the ootype wall, the ovary, and the uterus particularly around eggs during expulsion. Exposure of live worms to the PKA activator forskolin (50 µM) resulted in striking PKA activation in the central and peripheral nervous system including at nerve endings at/near the tegument surface. Such neuronal PKA activation was also observed without forskolin treatment, but only in a single batch of worms. In addition, PKA activation within the central and peripheral nervous systems visibly increased within 15 min of worm-pair separation when compared to that observed in closely coupled worm pairs. Finally, exposure of adult worms to forskolin induced hyperkinesias in a time and dose dependent manner with 100 µM forskolin significantly increasing the frequency of gross worm movements to 5.3 times that of control worms (P≤0.001). Collectively these data are consistent with PKA playing a central part in motor activity and neuronal communication, and possibly interplay between these two systems in S. mansoni. This study, the first to localize a protein kinase when exclusively in an activated state in adult S. mansoni, provides valuable insight into the intricacies of functional protein kinase signalling in the context of whole schistosome physiology.

  19. Properties of active nucleosomes as revealed by HMG 14 and 17 chromatography.

    PubMed Central

    Weisbrod, S T

    1982-01-01

    Nucleosomes from actively transcribed genes (active nucleosomes) contain nonhistone proteins HMG 14 and 17 and are preferentially sensitive to digestion by DNAse I. Active nucleosomes isolated by chromatography on an HMG 14 and 17 glass bead affinity column were analyzed with respect to overall structure, accessory nonhistone components and modifications to the DNA and histones. The experiments lead to the following conclusions: the DNA in the active nucleosome is undermethylated compared to bulk DNA; topoisomerase I is a non-stoichiometric component of the active nucleosome fraction; the level of histone acetylation is enriched in active nucleosomes, but the extent of enrichment cannot account for HMG binding; and the two histone H3 molecules in the active nucleosome can dimerize more readily and are, therefore, probably closer together than those in the bulk of the nucleosomes. Additionally it is shown that HMG 14 and 17 prefer to bind to single- vs. double-stranded nucleic acids. The role of HMG 14 and 17 in producing a highly DNAse I sensitive structure and correspondingly helping to facilitate transcription is discussed in terms of these properties. Images PMID:6210882

  20. Equilibrium physics breakdown reveals the active nature of red blood cell flickering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turlier, H.; Fedosov, D. A.; Audoly, B.; Auth, T.; Gov, N. S.; Sykes, C.; Joanny, J.-F.; Gompper, G.; Betz, T.

    2016-05-01

    Red blood cells, or erythrocytes, are seen to flicker under optical microscopy, a phenomenon initially described as thermal fluctuations of the cell membrane. But recent studies have suggested the involvement of non-equilibrium processes, without definitively ruling out equilibrium interpretations. Using active and passive microrheology to directly compare the membrane response and fluctuations on single erythrocytes, we report here a violation of the fluctuation-dissipation relation, which is a direct demonstration of the non-equilibrium nature of flickering. With an analytical model of the composite erythrocyte membrane and realistic stochastic simulations, we show that several molecular mechanisms may explain the active fluctuations, and we predict their kinetics. We demonstrate that tangential metabolic activity in the network formed by spectrin, a cytoskeletal protein, can generate curvature-mediated active membrane motions. We also show that other active membrane processes represented by direct normal force dipoles may explain the observed membrane activity. Our findings provide solid experimental and theoretical frameworks for future investigations of the origin and function of active motion in cells.

  1. Young asteroidal fluid activity revealed by absolute age from apatite in carbonaceous chondrite

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ai-Cheng; Li, Qiu-Li; Yurimoto, Hisayoshi; Sakamoto, Naoya; Li, Xian-Hua; Hu, Sen; Lin, Yang-Ting; Wang, Ru-Cheng

    2016-01-01

    Chondritic meteorites, consisting of the materials that have formed in the early solar system (ESS), have been affected by late thermal events and fluid activity to various degrees. Determining the timing of fluid activity in ESS is of fundamental importance for understanding the nature, formation, evolution and significance of fluid activity in ESS. Previous investigations have determined the relative ages of fluid activity with short-lived isotope systematics. Here we report an absolute 207Pb/206Pb isochron age (4,450±50 Ma) of apatite from Dar al Gani (DaG) 978, a type ∼3.5, ungrouped carbonaceous chondrite. The petrographic, mineralogical and geochemical features suggest that the apatite in DaG 978 should have formed during metamorphism in the presence of a fluid. Therefore, the apatite age represents an absolute age for fluid activity in an asteroidal setting. An impact event could have provided the heat to activate this young fluid activity in ESS. PMID:27682449

  2. Single-Molecule Nanocatalysis Reveals Catalytic Activation Energy of Single Nanocatalysts.

    PubMed

    Chen, Tao; Zhang, Yuwei; Xu, Weilin

    2016-09-28

    By monitoring the temperature-dependent catalytic activity of single Au nanocatalysts for a fluorogenic reaction, we derive the activation energies via multiple methods for two sequential catalytic steps (product formation and dissociation) on single nanocatalysts. The wide distributions of activation energies across multiple individual nanocatalysts indicate a huge static heterogeneity among the individual nanocatalysts. The compensation effect and isokinetic relationship of catalytic reactions are observed at the single particle level. This study exemplifies another function of single-molecule nanocatalysis and improves our understanding of heterogeneous catalysis.

  3. The crystal structure of the cysteine protease Xylellain from Xylella fastidiosa reveals an intriguing activation mechanism.

    PubMed

    Leite, Ney Ribeiro; Faro, Aline Regis; Dotta, Maria Amélia Oliva; Faim, Livia Maria; Gianotti, Andreia; Silva, Flavio Henrique; Oliva, Glaucius; Thiemann, Otavio Henrique

    2013-02-14

    Xylella fastidiosa is responsible for a wide range of economically important plant diseases. We report here the crystal structure and kinetic data of Xylellain, the first cysteine protease characterized from the genome of the pathogenic X. fastidiosa strain 9a5c. Xylellain has a papain-family fold, and part of the N-terminal sequence blocks the enzyme active site, thereby mediating protein activity. One novel feature identified in the structure is the presence of a ribonucleotide bound outside the active site. We show that this ribonucleotide plays an important regulatory role in Xylellain enzyme kinetics, possibly functioning as a physiological mediator.

  4. Neutron activation analysis; A sensitive test for trace elements

    SciTech Connect

    Hossain, T.Z. . Ward Lab.)

    1992-01-01

    This paper discusses neutron activation analysis (NAA), an extremely sensitive technique for determining the elemental constituents of an unknown specimen. Currently, there are some twenty-five moderate-power TRIGA reactors scattered across the United States (fourteen of them at universities), and one of their principal uses is for NAA. NAA is procedurally simple. A small amount of the material to be tested (typically between one and one hundred milligrams) is irradiated for a period that varies from a few minutes to several hours in a neutron flux of around 10{sup 12} neutrons per square centimeter per second. A tiny fraction of the nuclei present (about 10{sup {minus}8}) is transmuted by nuclear reactions into radioactive forms. Subsequently, the nuclei decay, and the energy and intensity of the gamma rays that they emit can be measured in a gamma-ray spectrometer.

  5. Mycobactericidal activity of selected disinfectants using a quantitative suspension test.

    PubMed

    Griffiths, P A; Babb, J R; Fraise, A P

    1999-02-01

    In this study, a quantitative suspension test carried out under both clean and dirty conditions was used to assess the activity of various instrument and environmental disinfectants against the type strain NCTC 946 and an endoscope washer disinfector isolate of Mycobacterium chelonae, Mycobacterium fortuitum NCTC 10,394, Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37 Rv NCTC 7416 and a clinical isolate of Mycobacterium avium-intracellulare (MAI). The disinfectants tested were; a chlorine releasing agent, sodium dichloroisocyanurate (NaDCC) at 1000 ppm and 10,000 ppm av Cl; chlorine dioxide at 1100 ppm av ClO2 (Tristel, MediChem International Limited); 70% industrial methylated spirits (IMS); 2% alkaline glutaraldehyde (Asep, Galan); 10% succinedialdehyde and formaldehyde mixture (Gigasept, Schulke & Mayr); 0.35% peracetic acid (NuCidex, Johnson & Johnson); and a peroxygen compound at 1% and 3% (Virkon, Antec International). Results showed that the clinical isolate of MAI was much more resistant than M. tuberculosis to all the disinfectants, while the type strains of M. chelonae and M. fortuitum were far more sensitive. The washer disinfector isolate of M. chelonae was extremely resistant to 2% alkaline activated glutaraldehyde and appeared to be slightly more resistant than the type strain to Nu-Cidex, Gigasept, Virkon and the lower concentration of NaDCC. This study has shown peracetic acid (Nu-Cidex), chlorine dioxide (Tristel), alcohol (IMS) and high concentrations of a chlorine releasing agent (NaDCC) are rapidly mycobactericidal. Glutaraldehyde, although effective, is a slow mycobactericide. Gigasept and Virkon are poor mycobactericidal agents and are not therefore recommended for instruments or spillage if mycobacteria are likely to be present.

  6. Activation pathway of Src kinase reveals intermediate states as targets for drug design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shukla, Diwakar; Meng, Yilin; Roux, Benoît; Pande, Vijay S.

    2014-03-01

    Unregulated activation of Src kinases leads to aberrant signalling, uncontrolled growth and differentiation of cancerous cells. Reaching a complete mechanistic understanding of large-scale conformational transformations underlying the activation of kinases could greatly help in the development of therapeutic drugs for the treatment of these pathologies. In principle, the nature of conformational transition could be modelled in silico via atomistic molecular dynamics simulations, although this is very challenging because of the long activation timescales. Here we employ a computational paradigm that couples transition pathway techniques and Markov state model-based massively distributed simulations for mapping the conformational landscape of c-src tyrosine kinase. The computations provide the thermodynamics and kinetics of kinase activation for the first time, and help identify key structural intermediates. Furthermore, the presence of a novel allosteric site in an intermediate state of c-src that could be potentially used for drug design is predicted.

  7. Differential brain activity states during the perception and nonperception of illusory motion as revealed by magnetoencephalography.

    PubMed

    Crowe, David A; Leuthold, Arthur C; Georgopoulos, Apostolos P

    2010-12-28

    We studied visual perception using an annular random-dot motion stimulus called the racetrack. We recorded neural activity using magnetoencephalography while subjects viewed variants of this stimulus that contained no inherent motion or various degrees of embedded motion. Subjects reported seeing rotary motion during viewing of all stimuli. We found that, in the absence of any motion signals, patterns of brain activity differed between states of motion perception and nonperception. Furthermore, when subjects perceived motion, activity states within the brain did not differ across stimuli of different amounts of embedded motion. In contrast, we found that during periods of nonperception brain-activity states varied with the amount of motion signal embedded in the stimulus. Taken together, these results suggest that during perception the brain may lock into a stable state in which lower-level signals are suppressed.

  8. Syringe test (modified larval immersion test): a new bioassay for testing acaricidal activity of plant extracts against Rhipicephalus microplus.

    PubMed

    Sindhu, Zia-ud-Din; Jonsson, Nicholas N; Iqbal, Zafar

    2012-09-10

    We report a new bioassay "syringe test" (modified larval immersion test) for in vitro evaluation of acaricidal activity of crude plant extracts. Prepared syringes, containing eggs of tick, were incubated until 14 d after hatching of eggs, when the bioassay was performed on the larvae. Lethal concentrations for 50% of larvae (LC(50)), LC(90) and LC(99) values were calculated for each tested product. 95% confidence intervals for LC(50) were very narrow, indicating a high degree of repeatability for the new bioassay on larvae of R. microplus. Bioassays were applied to six crude aqueous-methanol extracts from five plants (Acacia nilotica, Buxus papillosa, Fumaria parviflora, Juniperus excelsa, and Operculina turpethum), of which three showed discernible effects. Twenty-four hours post exposure, LC(99) values were 11.9% (w/v) for F. parviflora, 20.8% (w/v) and 29.2% (w/v) for B. papillosa and A. nilotica, respectively. After six days of exposure these values were; 9.1% (w/v), 9.2% (w/v) and 15.5 (w/v) for F. parviflora, A. nilotica and B. papillosa, respectively.

  9. Flagellin/TLR5 responses in epithelia reveal intertwined activation of inflammatory and apoptotic pathways

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Hui; Wu, Huixia; Sloane, Valerie; Jones, Rheinallt; Yu, Yimin; Lin, Patricia; Gewirtz, Andrew T.; Neish, Andrew S.

    2015-01-01

    Flagellin, the primary structural component of bacterial flagella, is recognized by Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5) present on the basolateral surface of intestinal epithelial cells. Utilizing biochemical assays of proinflammatory signaling pathways and mRNA expression profiling, we found that purified flagellin could recapitulate the human epithelial cell proinflammatory responses activated by flagellated pathogenic bacteria. Flagellin-induced proinflammatory activation showed similar kinetics and gene specificity as that induced by the classical endogenous proinflammatory cytokine TNF-α, although both responses were more rapid than that elicited by viable flagellated bacteria. Flagellin, like TNF-α, activated a number of antiapoptotic mediators, and pretreatment of epithelial cells with this bacterial protein could protect cells from subsequent bacterially mediated apoptotic challenge. However, when NF-κB-mediated or phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt proinflammatory signaling was blocked, flagellin could induce programmed cell death. Consistently, we demonstrate that flagellin and viable flagellate Salmonella induces both the extrinsic and intrinsic caspase activation pathways, with the extrinsic pathway (caspase 8) activated by purified flagellin in a TLR5-dependant fashion. We conclude that interaction of flagellin with epithelial cells induces caspase activation in parallel with proinflammatory responses. Such intertwining of proinflammatory and apoptotic signaling mediated by bacterial products suggests roles for host programmed cell death in the pathogenesis of enteric infections. PMID:16179598

  10. A systems study reveals concurrent activation of AMPK and mTOR by amino acids

    PubMed Central

    Pezze, Piero Dalle; Ruf, Stefanie; Sonntag, Annika G.; Langelaar-Makkinje, Miriam; Hall, Philip; Heberle, Alexander M.; Navas, Patricia Razquin; van Eunen, Karen; Tölle, Regine C.; Schwarz, Jennifer J.; Wiese, Heike; Warscheid, Bettina; Deitersen, Jana; Stork, Björn; Fäßler, Erik; Schäuble, Sascha; Hahn, Udo; Horvatovich, Peter; Shanley, Daryl P.; Thedieck, Kathrin

    2016-01-01

    Amino acids (aa) are not only building blocks for proteins, but also signalling molecules, with the mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) acting as a key mediator. However, little is known about whether aa, independently of mTORC1, activate other kinases of the mTOR signalling network. To delineate aa-stimulated mTOR network dynamics, we here combine a computational–experimental approach with text mining-enhanced quantitative proteomics. We report that AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) and mTOR complex 2 (mTORC2) are acutely activated by aa-readdition in an mTORC1-independent manner. AMPK activation by aa is mediated by Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase kinase β (CaMKKβ). In response, AMPK impinges on the autophagy regulators Unc-51-like kinase-1 (ULK1) and c-Jun. AMPK is widely recognized as an mTORC1 antagonist that is activated by starvation. We find that aa acutely activate AMPK concurrently with mTOR. We show that AMPK under aa sufficiency acts to sustain autophagy. This may be required to maintain protein homoeostasis and deliver metabolite intermediates for biosynthetic processes. PMID:27869123

  11. Activity Patterns of Free-Ranging Koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) Revealed by Accelerometry

    PubMed Central

    Ryan, Michelle A.; Whisson, Desley A.; Holland, Greg J.; Arnould, John P. Y.

    2013-01-01

    An understanding of koala activity patterns is important for measuring the behavioral response of this species to environmental change, but to date has been limited by the logistical challenges of traditional field methodologies. We addressed this knowledge gap by using tri-axial accelerometer data loggers attached to VHF radio collars to examine activity patterns of adult male and female koalas in a high-density population at Cape Otway, Victoria, Australia. Data were obtained from 27 adult koalas over two 7-d periods during the breeding season: 12 in the early-breeding season in November 2010, and 15 in the late-breeding season in January 2011. Multiple 15 minute observation blocks on each animal were used for validation of activity patterns determined from the accelerometer data loggers. Accelerometry was effective in distinguishing between inactive (sleeping, resting) and active (grooming, feeding and moving) behaviors. Koalas were more active during the early-breeding season with a higher index of movement (overall dynamic body acceleration [ODBA]) for both males and females. Koalas showed a distinct temporal pattern of behavior, with most activity occurring from mid-afternoon to early morning. Accelerometry has potential for examining fine-scale behavior of a wide range of arboreal and terrestrial species. PMID:24224050

  12. Structure of Escherichia coli tyrosine Kinase Etk Reveals a Novel Activation Mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Lee,D.; Zheng, J.; She, Y.; Jia, Z.

    2008-01-01

    While protein tyrosine (Tyr) kinases (PTKs) have been extensively characterized in eukaryotes, far less is known about their emerging counterparts in prokaryotes. The inner-membrane Wzc/Etk protein belongs to the bacterial PTK family, which has an important function in regulating the polymerization and transport of virulence-determining capsular polysaccharide (CPS). The kinase uses a unique two-step activation process involving intra-phosphorylation of a Tyr residue, although the molecular mechanism remains unknown. Herein, we report the first crystal structure of a bacterial PTK, the C-terminal kinase domain of Escherichia coli Tyr kinase (Etk) at 2.5-Angstroms resolution. The fold of the Etk kinase domain differs markedly from that of eukaryotic PTKs. Based on the observed structure and supporting mass spectrometric evidence of Etk, a unique activation mechanism is proposed that involves the phosphorylated Tyr residue, Y574, at the active site and its specific interaction with a previously unidentified key Arg residue, R614, to unblock the active site. Both in vitro kinase activity and in vivo antibiotics resistance studies using structure-guided mutants further support the novel activation mechanism.

  13. An in vitro screening with emerging contaminants reveals inhibition of carboxylesterase activity in aquatic organisms.

    PubMed

    Solé, Montserrat; Sanchez-Hernandez, Juan C

    2015-12-01

    Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) form part of the new generation of pollutants present in many freshwater and marine ecosystems. Although environmental concentrations of these bioactive substances are low, they cause sublethal effects (e.g., enzyme inhibition) in non-target organisms. However, little is known on metabolism of PPCPs by non-mammal species. Herein, an in vitro enzyme trial was performed to explore sensitivity of carboxylesterase (CE) activity of aquatic organisms to fourteen PPCPs. The esterase activity was determined in the liver of Mediterranean freshwater fish (Barbus meridionalis and Squalius laietanus), coastal marine fish (Dicentrarchus labrax and Solea solea), middle-slope fish (Trachyrhynchus scabrus), deep-sea fish (Alepocephalus rostratus and Cataetix laticeps), and in the digestive gland of a decapod crustacean (Aristeus antennatus). Results showed that 100μM of the lipid regulators simvastatin and fenofibrate significantly inhibited (30-80% of controls) the CE activity of all target species. Among the personal care products, nonylphenol and triclosan were strong esterase inhibitors in most species (36-68% of controls). Comparison with literature data suggests that fish CE activity is as sensitive to inhibition by some PPCPs as that of mammals, although their basal activity levels are lower than in mammals. Pending further studies on the interaction between PPCPs and CE activity, we postulate that this enzyme may act as a molecular sink for certain PPCPs in a comparable way than that described for the organophosphorus pesticides.

  14. Design, test, and evaluation of three active flutter suppression controllers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adams, William M., Jr.; Christhilf, David M.; Waszak, Martin R.; Mukhopadhyay, Vivek; Srinathkumar, S.

    1992-01-01

    Three control law design techniques for flutter suppression are presented. Each technique uses multiple control surfaces and/or sensors. The first method uses traditional tools (such as pole/zero loci and Nyquist diagrams) for producing a controller that has minimal complexity and which is sufficiently robust to handle plant uncertainty. The second procedure uses linear combinations of several accelerometer signals and dynamic compensation to synthesize the model rate of the critical mode for feedback to the distributed control surfaces. The third technique starts with a minimum-energy linear quadratic Gaussian controller, iteratively modifies intensity matrices corresponding to input and output noise, and applies controller order reduction to achieve a low-order, robust controller. The resulting designs were implemented digitally and tested subsonically on the active flexible wing wind-tunnel model in the Langley Transonic Dynamics Tunnel. Only the traditional pole/zero loci design was sufficiently robust to errors in the nominal plant to successfully suppress flutter during the test. The traditional pole/zero loci design provided simultaneous suppression of symmetric and antisymmetric flutter with a 24-percent increase in attainable dynamic pressure. Posttest analyses are shown which illustrate the problems encountered with the other laws.

  15. Basophil activation test with food additives in chronic urticaria patients.

    PubMed

    Kang, Min-Gyu; Song, Woo-Jung; Park, Han-Ki; Lim, Kyung-Hwan; Kim, Su-Jung; Lee, Suh-Young; Kim, Sae-Hoon; Cho, Sang-Heon; Min, Kyung-Up; Chang, Yoon-Seok

    2014-01-01

    The role of food additives in chronic urticaria (CU) is still under investigation. In this study, we aimed to explore the association between food additives and CU by using the basophil activation test (BAT). The BAT using 15 common food additives was performed for 15 patients with CU who had a history of recurrent urticarial aggravation following intake of various foods without a definite food-specific IgE. Of the 15 patients studied, two (13.3%) showed positive BAT results for one of the tested food additives. One patient responded to monosodium glutamate, showing 18.7% of CD203c-positive basophils. Another patient showed a positive BAT result to sodium benzoate. Both patients had clinical correlations with the agents, which were partly determined by elimination diets. The present study suggested that at least a small proportion of patients with CU had symptoms associated with food additives. The results may suggest the potential utility of the BAT to identity the role of food additives in CU.

  16. The Loughborough Intermittent Shuttle Test: a field test that simulates the activity pattern of soccer.

    PubMed

    Nicholas, C W; Nuttall, F E; Williams, C

    2000-02-01

    The aims of this study were to describe and determine the test-retest reliability of an exercise protocol, the Loughborough Intermittent Shuttle Test (the LIST), which was designed to simulate the activity pattern characteristic of the game of soccer. The protocol consisted of two parts: Part A comprised a fixed period of variable-intensity shuttle running over 20 m; Part B consisted of continuous running, alternating every 20 m between 55% and 95% VO2max, until volitional fatigue. Seven trained games players (age 21.5+/-0.9 years, height 182+/-2 cm, body mass 80.1+/-3.6 kg, VO2max 59.0+/-1.9 ml x kg(-1) x min(-1); mean +/- s(x)) performed the test on two occasions (Trial 1 and Trial 2), at least 7 days apart, to determine the test-retest reliability of the sprint times and running capacity. The physiological and metabolic responses on both occasions were also monitored. The participants ingested water ad libitum during the first trial, and were then prescribed the same amount of water during the second trial. The 15 m sprint times during Trials 1 and 2 averaged 2.42+/-0.04 s and 2.43+/-0.04 s, respectively. Run time during Part B was 6.3+/-2.0 min for Trial 1 and 6.1+/-1.3 min for Trial 2. The 95% limits of agreement for sprint times and run times during Part B were -0.14 to 0.12 s and -3.19 to 2.16 min respectively. There were no differences between trials for heart rate, rating of perceived exertion, body mass change during exercise, or blood lactate and glucose concentrations during the test. Thus, we conclude that the sprint times and the Part B run times were reproducible within the limits previously stated. In addition, the activity pattern and the physiological and metabolic responses closely simulated the match demands of soccer.

  17. Tests of the Extension and Deadbolt Models of Integrin Activation*

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Jieqing; Boylan, Brian; Luo, Bing-Hao; Newman, Peter J.; Springer, Timothy A.

    2007-01-01

    Despite extensive evidence that integrin conformational changes between bent and extended conformations regulate affinity for ligands, an alternative hypothesis has been proposed in which a “deadbolt” can regulate affinity for ligand in the absence of extension. Here, we tested both the deadbolt and the extension models. According to the deadbolt model, a hairpin loop in the β3 tail domain could act as a deadbolt to restrain the displacement of the β3 I domain β6-α7 loop and maintain integrin in the low affinity state. We found that mutating or deleting the β3 tail domain loop has no effect on ligand binding by either αIIbβ3 or αVβ3 integrins. In contrast, we found that mutations that lock integrins in the bent conformation with disulfide bonds resist inside-out activation induced by cytoplasmic domain mutation. Furthermore, we demonstrated that extension is required for accessibility to fibronectin but not smaller fragments. The data demonstrate that integrin extension is required for ligand binding during integrin inside-out signaling and that the deadbolt does not regulate integrin activation. PMID:17301049

  18. Rapid test for distinguishing membrane-active antibacterial agents.

    PubMed

    Prakash Singh, Maya

    2006-10-01

    In the search for antibacterial agents with a novel mode-of-action (MOA) many targeted cellular and cell-free assays are developed and used to screen chemical and natural product libraries. Frequently, hits identified by the primary screens include compounds with nonspecific activities that can affect the integrity and function of bacterial membrane. For a rapid dereplication of membrane-active compounds, a simple method was established using a commercially available Live/Dead(R) Bacterial Viability Kit. This method utilized two fluorescent nucleic acid stains, SYTO9 (stains all cells green) and propidium iodide (stains cells with damaged membrane red) for the drug-treated bacterial cells. The cells were then either examined visually by fluorescence microscopy or their fluorescence emissions were recorded using a multi-label plate reader set to measure emissions at two different wavelengths. The ratio of green versus red was compared to a standard curve indicating the percentage of live versus dead bacteria. Nine known antibiotics and 14 lead compounds from various antibacterial screens were tested with results consistent with their MOA.

  19. Blocking two-component signalling enhances Candida albicans virulence and reveals adaptive mechanisms that counteract sustained SAPK activation

    PubMed Central

    Ikeh, Mélanie A. C.; Haider, Mohammed; Brown, Alistair J. P.; Morgan, Brian A.; Erwig, Lars P.; Quinn, Janet

    2017-01-01

    The Ypd1 phosphorelay protein is a central constituent of fungal two-component signal transduction pathways. Inhibition of Ypd1 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Cryptococcus neoformans is lethal due to the sustained activation of the ‘p38-related’ Hog1 stress-activated protein kinase (SAPK). As two-component signalling proteins are not found in animals, Ypd1 is considered to be a prime antifungal target. However, a major fungal pathogen of humans, Candida albicans, can survive the concomitant sustained activation of Hog1 that occurs in cells lacking YPD1. Here we show that the sustained activation of Hog1 upon Ypd1 loss is mediated through the Ssk1 response regulator. Moreover, we present evidence that C. albicans survives SAPK activation in the short-term, following Ypd1 loss, by triggering the induction of protein tyrosine phosphatase-encoding genes which prevent the accumulation of lethal levels of phosphorylated Hog1. In addition, our studies reveal an unpredicted, reversible, mechanism that acts to substantially reduce the levels of phosphorylated Hog1 in ypd1Δ cells following long-term sustained SAPK activation. Indeed, over time, ypd1Δ cells become phenotypically indistinguishable from wild-type cells. Importantly, we also find that drug-induced down-regulation of YPD1 expression actually enhances the virulence of C. albicans in two distinct animal infection models. Investigating the underlying causes of this increased virulence, revealed that drug-mediated repression of YPD1 expression promotes hyphal growth both within murine kidneys, and following phagocytosis, thus increasing the efficacy by which C. albicans kills macrophages. Taken together, these findings challenge the targeting of Ypd1 proteins as a general antifungal strategy and reveal novel cellular adaptation mechanisms to sustained SAPK activation. PMID:28135328

  20. β-Arrestin biosensors reveal a rapid, receptor-dependent activation/deactivation cycle

    PubMed Central

    Nuber, Susanne; Zabel, Ulrike; Lorenz, Kristina; Nuber, Andreas; Milligan, Graeme; Tobin, Andrew B.; Lohse, Martin J.; Hoffmann, Carsten

    2016-01-01

    (β-)Arrestins are important regulators of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs)1–3. They bind to active, phosphorylated GPCRs and thereby shut off ‘classical’ signalling to G proteins3,4, trigger internalization of GPCRs via interaction with the clathrin machinery5–7 and mediate signalling via ‘non-classical’ pathways1,2. In addition to two visual arrestins that bind to rod and cone photoreceptors (termed arrestin1 and arrestin4), there are only two (non-visual) β-arrestin proteins (β-arrestin1 and β-arrestin2, also termed arrestin2 and arrestin3), which regulate hundreds of different (non-visual) GPCRs. Binding of these proteins to GPCRs usually requires the active form of the receptors plus their phosphorylation by G-protein-coupled receptor kinases (GRKs)1,3,4. The binding of receptors or their carboxy terminus as well as certain truncations induce active conformations of (β-)arrestins that have recently been solved by X-ray crystallography8–10. Here we investigate both the interaction of β-arrestin with GPCRs, and the β-arrestin conformational changes in real time and in living human cells, using a series of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based β-arrestin2 biosensors. We observe receptor-specific patterns of conformational changes in β-arrestin2 that occur rapidly after the receptor–β-arrestin2 interaction. After agonist removal, these changes persist for longer than the direct receptor interaction. Our data indicate a rapid, receptor-type-specific, two-step binding and activation process between GPCRs and β-arrestins. They further indicate that β-arrestins remain active after dissociation from receptors, allowing them to remain at the cell surface and presumably signal independently. Thus, GPCRs trigger a rapid, receptor-specific activation/deactivation cycle of β-arrestins, which permits their active signalling. PMID:27007855

  1. How community environment shapes physical activity: perceptions revealed through the PhotoVoice method.

    PubMed

    Belon, Ana Paula; Nieuwendyk, Laura M; Vallianatos, Helen; Nykiforuk, Candace I J

    2014-09-01

    A growing body of evidence shows that community environment plays an important role in individuals' physical activity engagement. However, while attributes of the physical environment are widely investigated, sociocultural, political, and economic aspects of the environment are often neglected. This article helps to fill these knowledge gaps by providing a more comprehensive understanding of multiple dimensions of the community environment relative to physical activity. The purpose of this study was to qualitatively explore how people's experiences and perceptions of their community environments affect their abilities to engage in physical activity. A PhotoVoice method was used to identify barriers to and opportunities for physical activity among residents in four communities in the province of Alberta, Canada, in 2009. After taking pictures, the thirty-five participants shared their perceptions of those opportunities and barriers in their community environments during individual interviews. Using the Analysis Grid for Environments Linked to Obesity (ANGELO) framework, themes emerging from these photo-elicited interviews were organized in four environment types: physical, sociocultural, economic, and political. The data show that themes linked to the physical (56.6%) and sociocultural (31.4%) environments were discussed more frequently than the themes of the economic (5.9%) and political (6.1%) environments. Participants identified nuanced barriers and opportunities for physical activity, which are illustrated by their quotes and photographs. The findings suggest that a myriad of factors from physical, sociocultural, economic, and political environments influence people's abilities to be physically active in their communities. Therefore, adoption of a broad, ecological perspective is needed to address the barriers and build upon the opportunities described by participants to make communities more healthy and active.

  2. Mutational and structural analyses of Caldanaerobius polysaccharolyticus Man5B reveal novel active site residues for family 5 glycoside hydrolases.

    PubMed

    Oyama, Takuji; Schmitz, George E; Dodd, Dylan; Han, Yejun; Burnett, Alanna; Nagasawa, Naoko; Mackie, Roderick I; Nakamura, Haruki; Morikawa, Kosuke; Cann, Isaac

    2013-01-01

    CpMan5B is a glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 5 enzyme exhibiting both β-1,4-mannosidic and β-1,4-glucosidic cleavage activities. To provide insight into the amino acid residues that contribute to catalysis and substrate specificity, we solved the structure of CpMan5B at 1.6 Å resolution. The structure revealed several active site residues (Y12, N92 and R196) in CpMan5B that are not present in the active sites of other structurally resolved GH5 enzymes. Residue R196 in GH5 enzymes is thought to be strictly conserved as a histidine that participates in an electron relay network with the catalytic glutamates, but we show that an arginine fulfills a functionally equivalent role and is found at this position in every enzyme in subfamily GH5_36, which includes CpMan5B. Residue N92 is required for full enzymatic activity and forms a novel bridge over the active site that is absent in other family 5 structures. Our data also reveal a role of Y12 in establishing the substrate preference for CpMan5B. Using these molecular determinants as a probe allowed us to identify Man5D from Caldicellulosiruptor bescii as a mannanase with minor endo-glucanase activity.

  3. Mutational and Structural Analyses of Caldanaerobius polysaccharolyticus Man5B Reveal Novel Active Site Residues for Family 5 Glycoside Hydrolases

    PubMed Central

    Han, Yejun; Burnett, Alanna; Nagasawa, Naoko; Mackie, Roderick I.; Nakamura, Haruki; Morikawa, Kosuke; Cann, Isaac

    2013-01-01

    CpMan5B is a glycoside hydrolase (GH) family 5 enzyme exhibiting both β-1,4-mannosidic and β-1,4-glucosidic cleavage activities. To provide insight into the amino acid residues that contribute to catalysis and substrate specificity, we solved the structure of CpMan5B at 1.6 Å resolution. The structure revealed several active site residues (Y12, N92 and R196) in CpMan5B that are not present in the active sites of other structurally resolved GH5 enzymes. Residue R196 in GH5 enzymes is thought to be strictly conserved as a histidine that participates in an electron relay network with the catalytic glutamates, but we show that an arginine fulfills a functionally equivalent role and is found at this position in every enzyme in subfamily GH5_36, which includes CpMan5B. Residue N92 is required for full enzymatic activity and forms a novel bridge over the active site that is absent in other family 5 structures. Our data also reveal a role of Y12 in establishing the substrate preference for CpMan5B. Using these molecular determinants as a probe allowed us to identify Man5D from Caldicellulosiruptor bescii as a mannanase with minor endo-glucanase activity. PMID:24278284

  4. From Blame to Punishment: Disrupting Prefrontal Cortex Activity Reveals Norm Enforcement Mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Buckholtz, Joshua W; Martin, Justin W; Treadway, Michael T; Jan, Katherine; Zald, David H; Jones, Owen; Marois, René

    2015-09-23

    The social welfare provided by cooperation depends on the enforcement of social norms. Determining blameworthiness and assigning a deserved punishment are two cognitive cornerstones of norm enforcement. Although prior work has implicated the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) in norm-based judgments, the relative contribution of this region to blameworthiness and punishment decisions remains poorly understood. Here, we used repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) and fMRI to determine the specific role of DLPFC function in norm-enforcement behavior. DLPFC rTMS reduced punishment for wrongful acts without affecting blameworthiness ratings, and fMRI revealed punishment-selective DLPFC recruitment, suggesting that these two facets of norm-based decision making are neurobiologically dissociable. Finally, we show that DLPFC rTMS affects punishment decision making by altering the integration of information about culpability and harm. Together, these findings reveal a selective, causal role for DLPFC in norm enforcement: representational integration of the distinct information streams used to make punishment decisions.

  5. Urinary metabolomics in Fxr-null mice reveals activated adaptive metabolic pathways upon bile acid challenge.

    PubMed

    Cho, Joo-Youn; Matsubara, Tsutomu; Kang, Dong Wook; Ahn, Sung-Hoon; Krausz, Kristopher W; Idle, Jeffrey R; Luecke, Hans; Gonzalez, Frank J

    2010-05-01

    Farnesoid X receptor (FXR) is a nuclear receptor that regulates genes involved in synthesis, metabolism, and transport of bile acids and thus plays a major role in maintaining bile acid homeostasis. In this study, metabolomic responses were investigated in urine of wild-type and Fxr-null mice fed cholic acid, an FXR ligand, using ultra-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) coupled with electrospray time-of-flight mass spectrometry (TOFMS). Multivariate data analysis between wild-type and Fxr-null mice on a cholic acid diet revealed that the most increased ions were metabolites of p-cresol (4-methylphenol), corticosterone, and cholic acid in Fxr-null mice. The structural identities of the above metabolites were confirmed by chemical synthesis and by comparing retention time (RT) and/or tandem mass fragmentation patterns of the urinary metabolites with the authentic standards. Tauro-3alpha,6,7alpha,12alpha-tetrol (3alpha,6,7alpha,12alpha-tetrahydroxy-5beta-cholestan-26-oyltaurine), one of the most increased metabolites in Fxr-null mice on a CA diet, is a marker for efficient hydroxylation of toxic bile acids possibly through induction of Cyp3a11. A cholestatic model induced by lithocholic acid revealed that enhanced expression of Cyp3a11 is the major defense mechanism to detoxify cholestatic bile acids in Fxr-null mice. These results will be useful for identification of biomarkers for cholestasis and for determination of adaptive molecular mechanisms in cholestasis.

  6. Structure of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rtr1 reveals an active site for an atypical phosphatase.

    PubMed

    Irani, Seema; Yogesha, S D; Mayfield, Joshua; Zhang, Mengmeng; Zhang, Yong; Matthews, Wendy L; Nie, Grace; Prescott, Nicholas A; Zhang, Yan Jessie

    2016-03-01

    Changes in the phosphorylation status of the carboxyl-terminal domain (CTD) of RNA polymerase II (RNAPII) correlate with the process of eukaryotic transcription. The yeast protein regulator of transcription 1 (Rtr1) and the human homolog RNAPII-associated protein 2 (RPAP2) may function as CTD phosphatases; however, crystal structures of Kluyveromyces lactis Rtr1 lack a consensus active site. We identified a phosphoryl transfer domain in Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rtr1 by obtaining and characterizing a 2.6 Å resolution crystal structure. We identified a putative substrate-binding pocket in a deep groove between the zinc finger domain and a pair of helices that contained a trapped sulfate ion. Because sulfate mimics the chemistry of a phosphate group, this structural data suggested that this groove represents the phosphoryl transfer active site. Mutagenesis of the residues lining this groove disrupted catalytic activity of the enzyme assayed in vitro with a fluorescent chemical substrate, and expression of the mutated Rtr1 failed to rescue growth of yeast lacking Rtr1. Characterization of the phosphatase activity of RPAP2 and a mutant of the conserved putative catalytic site in the same chemical assay indicated a conserved reaction mechanism. Our data indicated that the structure of the phosphoryl transfer domain and reaction mechanism for the phosphoryl transfer activity of Rtr1 is distinct from those of other phosphatase families.

  7. Recent and episodic volcanic and glacial activity on Mars revealed by the High Resolution Stereo Camera.

    PubMed

    Neukum, G; Jaumann, R; Hoffmann, H; Hauber, E; Head, J W; Basilevsky, A T; Ivanov, B A; Werner, S C; van Gasselt, S; Murray, J B; McCord, T

    2004-12-23

    The large-area coverage at a resolution of 10-20 metres per pixel in colour and three dimensions with the High Resolution Stereo Camera Experiment on the European Space Agency Mars Express Mission has made it possible to study the time-stratigraphic relationships of volcanic and glacial structures in unprecedented detail and give insight into the geological evolution of Mars. Here we show that calderas on five major volcanoes on Mars have undergone repeated activation and resurfacing during the last 20 per cent of martian history, with phases of activity as young as two million years, suggesting that the volcanoes are potentially still active today. Glacial deposits at the base of the Olympus Mons escarpment show evidence for repeated phases of activity as recently as about four million years ago. Morphological evidence is found that snow and ice deposition on the Olympus construct at elevations of more than 7,000 metres led to episodes of glacial activity at this height. Even now, water ice protected by an insulating layer of dust may be present at high altitudes on Olympus Mons.

  8. Small-angle neutron and X-ray scattering reveal conformational changes in rhodopsin activation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shrestha, Utsab R.; Bhowmik, Debsindhu; Perera, Suchitrhanga M. C. D.; Chawla, Udeep; Struts, Andrey V.; Graziono, Vito; Pingali, Sai Venkatesh; Heller, William T.; Qian, Shuo; Brown, Michael F.; Chu, Xiang-Qiang

    2015-03-01

    Understanding G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) activation plays a crucial role in the development of novel improved molecular drugs. During photo-activation, the retinal chromophore of the visual GPCR rhodopsin isomerizes from 11-cis to all-trans conformation, yielding an equilibrium between inactive Meta-I and active Meta-II states. The principal goals of this work are to address whether the activation of rhodopsin leads to a single state or a conformational ensemble, and how protein organizational structure changes with detergent environment in solution. We use both small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) techniques to answer the above questions. For the first time we observe the change in protein conformational ensemble upon photo-activation by SANS with contrast variation, which enables the separate study of the protein structure within the detergent assembly. In addition, SAXS study of protein structure within detergent assembly suggests that the detergent molecules form a belt of monolayer (micelle) around protein with different geometrical shapes to keep the protein in folded state.

  9. Structure of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rtr1 reveals an active site for an atypical phosphatase

    PubMed Central

    Mayfield, Joshua; Zhang, Mengmeng; Zhang, Yong; Matthews, Wendy L.; Nie, Grace; Prescott, Nicholas A.; Zhang, Yan Jessie

    2016-01-01

    Changes in the phosphorylation status of the carboxyl-terminal domain (CTD) of RNA polymerase II (RNAPII) correlate with the process of eukaryotic transcription. The yeast protein regulator of transcription 1 (Rtr1) and the human homolog RNAPII-associated protein 2 (RPAP2) may function as CTD phosphatases; however, crystal structures of Kluyveromyces lactis Rtr1 lack a consensus active site. We identified a phosphoryl transfer domain in Saccharomyces cerevisiae Rtr1 by obtaining and characterizing a 2.6 Å resolution crystal structure. We identified a putative substrate-binding pocket in a deep groove between the zinc finger domain and a pair of helices that contained a trapped sulfate ion. Because sulfate mimics the chemistry of a phosphate group, this structural data suggested that this groove represents the phosphoryl transfer active site. Mutagenesis of the residues lining this groove disrupted catalytic activity of the enzyme assayed in vitro with a fluorescent chemical substrate, and expression of the mutated Rtr1 failed to rescue growth of yeast lacking Rtr1. Characterization of the phosphatase activity of RPAP2 and a mutant of the conserved putative catalytic site in the same chemical assay indicated a conserved reaction mechanism. Our data indicated that the structure of the phosphoryl transfer domain and reaction mechanism for the phosphoryl transfer activity of Rtr1 is distinct from those of other phosphatase families. PMID:26933063

  10. Structural basis for PPAR partial or full activation revealed by a novel ligand binding mode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capelli, Davide; Cerchia, Carmen; Montanari, Roberta; Loiodice, Fulvio; Tortorella, Paolo; Laghezza, Antonio; Cervoni, Laura; Pochetti, Giorgio; Lavecchia, Antonio

    2016-10-01

    The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are nuclear receptors involved in the regulation of the metabolic homeostasis and therefore represent valuable therapeutic targets for the treatment of metabolic diseases. The development of more balanced drugs interacting with PPARs, devoid of the side-effects showed by the currently marketed PPARγ full agonists, is considered the major challenge for the pharmaceutical companies. Here we present a structure-based virtual screening approach that let us identify a novel PPAR pan-agonist with a very attractive activity profile and its crystal structure in the complex with PPARα and PPARγ, respectively. In PPARα this ligand occupies a new pocket whose filling is allowed by the ligand-induced switching of the F273 side chain from a closed to an open conformation. The comparison between this pocket and the corresponding cavity in PPARγ provides a rationale for the different activation of the ligand towards PPARα and PPARγ, suggesting a novel basis for ligand design.

  11. Direct measurement of TRPV4 and PIEZO1 activity reveals multiple mechanotransduction pathways in chondrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Rocio Servin-Vences, M; Moroni, Mirko; Lewin, Gary R; Poole, Kate

    2017-01-01

    The joints of mammals are lined with cartilage, comprised of individual chondrocytes embedded in a specialized extracellular matrix. Chondrocytes experience a complex mechanical environment and respond to changing mechanical loads in order to maintain cartilage homeostasis. It has been proposed that mechanically gated ion channels are of functional importance in chondrocyte mechanotransduction; however, direct evidence of mechanical current activation in these cells has been lacking. We have used high-speed pressure clamp and elastomeric pillar arrays to apply distinct mechanical stimuli to primary murine chondrocytes, stretch of the membrane and deflection of cell-substrate contacts points, respectively. Both TRPV4 and PIEZO1 channels contribute to currents activated by stimuli applied at cell-substrate contacts but only PIEZO1 mediates stretch-activated currents. These data demonstrate that there are separate, but overlapping, mechanoelectrical transduction pathways in chondrocytes. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21074.001 PMID:28135189

  12. Structures of apicomplexan calcium-dependent protein kinases reveal mechanism of activation by calcium

    SciTech Connect

    Wernimont, Amy K; Artz, Jennifer D.; Jr, Patrick Finerty; Lin, Yu-Hui; Amani, Mehrnaz; Allali-Hassani, Abdellah; Senisterra, Guillermo; Vedadi, Masoud; Tempel, Wolfram; Mackenzie, Farrell; Chau, Irene; Lourido, Sebastian; Sibley, L. David; Hui, Raymond

    2010-09-21

    Calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) have pivotal roles in the calcium-signaling pathway in plants, ciliates and apicomplexan parasites and comprise a calmodulin-dependent kinase (CaMK)-like kinase domain regulated by a calcium-binding domain in the C terminus. To understand this intramolecular mechanism of activation, we solved the structures of the autoinhibited (apo) and activated (calcium-bound) conformations of CDPKs from the apicomplexan parasites Toxoplasma gondii and Cryptosporidium parvum. In the apo form, the C-terminal CDPK activation domain (CAD) resembles a calmodulin protein with an unexpected long helix in the N terminus that inhibits the kinase domain in the same manner as CaMKII. Calcium binding triggers the reorganization of the CAD into a highly intricate fold, leading to its relocation around the base of the kinase domain to a site remote from the substrate binding site. This large conformational change constitutes a distinct mechanism in calcium signal-transduction pathways.

  13. High throughput estimation of functional cell activities reveals disease mechanisms and predicts relevant clinical outcomes.

    PubMed

    Hidalgo, Marta R; Cubuk, Cankut; Amadoz, Alicia; Salavert, Francisco; Carbonell-Caballero, José; Dopazo, Joaquin

    2017-01-17

    Understanding the aspects of the cell functionality that account for disease or drug action mechanisms is a main challenge for precision medicine. Here we propose a new method that models cell signaling using biological knowledge on signal transduction. The method recodes individual gene expression values (and/or gene mutations) into accurate measurements of changes in the activity of signaling circuits, which ultimately constitute high-throughput estimations of cell functionalities caused by gene activity within the pathway. Moreover, such estimations can be obtained either at cohort-level, in case/control comparisons, or personalized for individual patients. The accuracy of the method is demonstrated in an extensive analysis involving 5640 patients from 12 different cancer types. Circuit activity measurements not only have a high diagnostic value but also can be related to relevant disease outcomes such as survival, and can be used to assess therapeutic interventions.

  14. Structural investigation of heteroyohimbine alkaloid synthesis reveals active site elements that control stereoselectivity

    PubMed Central

    Stavrinides, Anna; Tatsis, Evangelos C.; Caputi, Lorenzo; Foureau, Emilien; Stevenson, Clare E. M.; Lawson, David M.; Courdavault, Vincent; O'Connor, Sarah E.

    2016-01-01

    Plants produce an enormous array of biologically active metabolites, often with stereochemical variations on the same molecular scaffold. These changes in stereochemistry dramatically impact biological activity. Notably, the stereoisomers of the heteroyohimbine alkaloids show diverse pharmacological activities. We reported a medium chain dehydrogenase/reductase (MDR) from Catharanthus roseus that catalyses formation of a heteroyohimbine isomer. Here we report the discovery of additional heteroyohimbine synthases (HYSs), one of which produces a mixture of diastereomers. The crystal structures for three HYSs have been solved, providing insight into the mechanism of reactivity and stereoselectivity, with mutation of one loop transforming product specificity. Localization and gene silencing experiments provide a basis for understanding the function of these enzymes in vivo. This work sets the stage to explore how MDRs evolved to generate structural and biological diversity in specialized plant metabolism and opens the possibility for metabolic engineering of new compounds based on this scaffold. PMID:27418042

  15. Radiation inactivation analysis of influenza virus reveals different target sizes for fusion, leakage, and neuraminidase activities

    SciTech Connect

    Gibson, S.; Jung, C.Y.; Takahashi, M.; Lenard, J.

    1986-10-07

    The size of the functional units responsible for several activities carried out by the influenza virus envelope glycoproteins was determined by radiation inactivation analysis. Neuraminidase activity, which resides in the glycoprotein NA, was inactivated exponentially with an increasing radiation dose, yielding a target size of 94 +/- 5 kilodaltons (kDa), in reasonable agreement with that of the disulfide-bonded dimer (120 kDa). All the other activities studied are properties of the HA glycoprotein and were normalized to the known molecular weight of the neuraminidase dimer. Virus-induced fusion activity was measured by two phospholipid dilution assays: relief of energy transfer between N-(7-nitro-2,1,3-benzoxadiazol-4-yl)dipalmitoyl-L-alpha- phosphatidylethanolamine (N-NBD-PE) and N-(lissamine rhodamine B sulfonyl)-dioleoyl-L-alpha-phosphatidylethanolamine (N-Rh-PE) in target liposomes and relief of self-quenching of N-Rh-PE in target liposomes. Radiation inactivation of fusion activity proceeded exponentially with radiation dose, yielding normalized target sizes of 68 +/- 6 kDa by assay i and 70 +/- 4 kDa by assay ii. These values are close to the molecular weight of a single disulfide-bonded (HA1 + HA2) unit (75 kDa), the monomer of the HA trimer. A single monomer is thus inactivated by each radiation event, and each monomer (or some part of it) constitutes a minimal functional unit capable of mediating fusion. Virus-induced leakage of calcein from target liposomes and virus-induced leakage of hemoglobin from erythrocytes (hemolysis) both showed more complex inactivation behavior: a pronounced shoulder was present in both inactivation curves, followed by a steep drop in activity at higher radiation levels.

  16. In vivo imaging of alphaherpesvirus infection reveals synchronized activity dependent on axonal sorting of viral proteins.

    PubMed

    Granstedt, Andrea E; Bosse, Jens B; Thiberge, Stephan Y; Enquist, Lynn W

    2013-09-10

    A clinical hallmark of human alphaherpesvirus infections is peripheral pain or itching. Pseudorabies virus (PRV), a broad host range alphaherpesvirus, causes violent pruritus in many different animals, but the mechanism is unknown. Previous in vitro studies have shown that infected, cultured peripheral nervous system (PNS) neurons exhibited aberrant electrical activity after PRV infection due to the action of viral membrane fusion proteins, yet it is unclear if such activity occurs in infected PNS ganglia in living animals and if it correlates with disease symptoms. Using two-photon microscopy, we imaged autonomic ganglia in living mice infected with PRV strains expressing GCaMP3, a genetically encoded calcium indicator, and used the changes in calcium flux to monitor the activity of many neurons simultaneously with single-cell resolution. Infection with virulent PRV caused these PNS neurons to fire synchronously and cyclically in highly correlated patterns among infected neurons. This activity persisted even when we severed the presynaptic axons, showing that infection-induced firing is independent of input from presynaptic brainstem neurons. This activity was not observed after infections with an attenuated PRV recombinant used for circuit tracing or with PRV mutants lacking either viral glycoprotein B, required for membrane fusion, or viral membrane protein Us9, required for sorting virions and viral glycoproteins into axons. We propose that the viral fusion proteins produced by virulent PRV infection induce electrical coupling in unmyelinated axons in vivo. This action would then give rise to the synchronous and cyclical activity in the ganglia and contribute to the characteristic peripheral neuropathy.

  17. Working memory and lexical ambiguity resolution as revealed by ERPs: a difficult case for activation theories.

    PubMed

    Gunter, Thomas C; Wagner, Susanne; Friederici, Angela D

    2003-07-01

    This series of three event-related potential experiments explored the issue of whether the underlying mechanism of working memory (WM) supporting language processing is inhibitory or activational in nature. These different cognitive mechanisms have been proposed to explain the more efficient processing of subjects with a high WM span compared to those with a low WM span. Participants with high and low WM span were presented with sentences containing a homonym followed three words later by a nominal disambiguation cue and a final disambiguation using a verb. At the position of the disambiguation cue, inhibitory or activational WM mechanisms predict contrasting results. When activation is the underlying mechanism for efficient processing, the prediction is that high memory span persons activate both meanings of the homonym equally in WM, whereas low memory span persons only have one meaning present. When inhibition is the underlying mechanism, the predictions are the reverse. The ERP data, in particular, the variations of the meaning related N400 component, showed clear evidence for inhibition as the underlying cognitive mechanism in high-span readers. For low-span participants the cueing towards the dominant or the subordinate meaning elicited an equivalently large N400 component suggesting that both meanings are active in WM. In high-span subjects, the dominant disambiguation cue elicited a smaller N400 than the subordinate one, indicating that for these subjects particularly the dominant meaning is active. The experiments showed that inhibitory processes are probably underlying WM used during language comprehension in high-span subjects. Moreover, they demonstrate that these subjects can use their inhibition in a more flexible manner than low-span subjects. The effects that these processing differences have on the efficiency of language parsing are discussed.

  18. Revealing the activation pathway for TMEM16A chloride channels from macroscopic currents and kinetic models.

    PubMed

    Contreras-Vite, Juan A; Cruz-Rangel, Silvia; De Jesús-Pérez, José J; Figueroa, Iván A Aréchiga; Rodríguez-Menchaca, Aldo A; Pérez-Cornejo, Patricia; Hartzell, H Criss; Arreola, Jorge

    2016-07-01

    TMEM16A (ANO1), the pore-forming subunit of calcium-activated chloride channels, regulates several physiological and pathophysiological processes such as smooth muscle contraction, cardiac and neuronal excitability, salivary secretion, tumour growth and cancer progression. Gating of TMEM16A is complex because it involves the interplay between increases in intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]i), membrane depolarization, extracellular Cl(-) or permeant anions and intracellular protons. Our goal here was to understand how these variables regulate TMEM16A gating and to explain four observations. (a) TMEM16A is activated by voltage in the absence of intracellular Ca(2+). (b) The Cl(-) conductance is decreased after reducing extracellular Cl(-) concentration ([Cl(-)]o). (c) ICl is regulated by physiological concentrations of [Cl(-)]o. (d) In cells dialyzed with 0.2 μM [Ca(2+)]i, Cl(-) has a bimodal effect: at [Cl(-)]o <30 mM TMEM16A current activates with a monoexponential time course, but above 30 mM, [Cl(-)]o ICl activation displays fast and slow kinetics. To explain the contribution of Vm, Ca(2+) and Cl(-) to gating, we developed a 12-state Markov chain model. This model explains TMEM16A activation as a sequential, direct, and Vm-dependent binding of two Ca(2+) ions coupled to a Vm-dependent binding of an external Cl(-) ion, with Vm-dependent transitions between states. Our model predicts that extracellular Cl(-) does not alter the apparent Ca(2+) affinity of TMEM16A, which we corroborated experimentally. Rather, extracellular Cl(-) acts by stabilizing the open configuration induced by Ca(2+) and by contributing to the Vm dependence of activation.

  19. Determination of the physiological 2:2 TLR5:flagellin activation stoichiometry revealed by the activity of a fusion receptor

    SciTech Connect

    Ivičak-Kocjan, Karolina; Panter, Gabriela; Benčina, Mojca; Jerala, Roman

    2013-05-24

    Highlights: •The chimeric protein fusing flagellin to the TLR5 ectodomain is constitutively active. •Mutation P736H within the BB-loop of TLR5 TIR domain renders the receptor inactive. •The R90D mutation in flagellin inactivated autoactivation of the chimeric protein. •The 2:2 stoichiometry of the TLR5:flagellin complex is physiologically relevant. -- Abstract: Toll-like receptor 5 (TLR5) recognizes flagellin of most flagellated bacteria, enabling activation of the MyD88-dependent signaling pathway. The recently published crystal structure of a truncated zebrafish TLR5 ectodomain in complex with an inactive flagellin fragment indicated binding of two flagellin molecules to a TLR5 homodimer, however this complex did not dimerize in solution. In the present study, we aimed to determine the physiological stoichiometry of TLR5:flagellin activation by the use of a chimeric protein composed of an active flagellin fragment linked to the N-terminus of human TLR5 (SF-TLR5). This construct was constitutively active. Inactivation by the R90D mutation within flagellin demonstrated that autoactivation of the chimeric protein depended solely on the specific interaction between TLR5 and flagellin. Addition of wild-type hTLR5 substantially lowered autoactivation of SF-TLR5 in a concentration dependent manner, an effect which was reversible by the addition of exogenous Salmonella typhimurium flagellin, indicating the biological activity of a TLR5:flagellin complex with a 2:2 stoichiometry. These results, in addition to the combinations of inactive P736H mutation within the BB-loop of the TIR domain of TLR5 and SF-TLR5, further confirm the mechanism of TLR5 activation.

  20. HAL/S-360 compiler test activity report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Helmers, C. T.

    1974-01-01

    The levels of testing employed in verifying the HAL/S-360 compiler were as follows: (1) typical applications program case testing; (2) functional testing of the compiler system and its generated code; and (3) machine oriented testing of compiler implementation on operational computers. Details of the initial test plan and subsequent adaptation are reported, along with complete test results for each phase which examined the production of object codes for every possible source statement.

  1. [Effect of psychotropic drugs on activity of anticonvulsants in maximal electroshock test].

    PubMed

    Alikina, N A; Tregubov, A L; Kotegov, V P

    2010-08-01

    The effect ofpsychotropic drugs on the pharmacological properties of anticonvulsants was studied on white mice under maximal electroshock (ME) test conditions. Changes in the anticonvulsant effect of phenobarbital, diphenin, carbamazepine, hexamidine were traced upon their joint administration with psychotropic drugs, including piracetam, aminalon, amitriptyline, imizine, levomepromazine, and lithium oxybutyrate. An important result of research is the fact, that in no one of combinations the basic pharmacological effect of anticonvulsants was decreased. Based on the results of experiments, the most rational combinations of anticonvulsants with psychotropic preparations were revealed as manifested in the ME test. As criterion of rational combination was the increase in the activity of anticonvulsants and reduction of their toxicity in combination or at least invariance of this parameter. Rational combinations include (i) phenobarbital with piracetam, amitriptyline, levomepromazine, and lithium oxybutyrate; (ii) carbamazepine with piracetam; and (iii) hexamidine with amitriptyline, levomepromazine and imizine.

  2. Reconstituted B cell receptor signaling reveals carbohydrate-dependent mode of activation

    PubMed Central

    Villar, Rina F.; Patel, Jinal; Weaver, Grant C.; Kanekiyo, Masaru; Wheatley, Adam K.; Yassine, Hadi M.; Costello, Catherine E.; Chandler, Kevin B.; McTamney, Patrick. M.; Nabel, Gary J.; McDermott, Adrian B.; Mascola, John R.; Carr, Steven A.; Lingwood, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Activation of immune cells (but not B cells) with lectins is widely known. We used the structurally defined interaction between influenza hemagglutinin (HA) and its cell surface receptor sialic acid (SA) to identify a B cell receptor (BCR) activation modality that proceeded through non-cognate interactions with antigen. Using a new approach to reconstitute antigen-receptor interactions in a human reporter B cell line, we found that sequence-defined BCRs from the human germline repertoire could be triggered by both complementarity to influenza HA and a separate mode of signaling that relied on multivalent ligation of BCR sialyl-oligosaccharide. The latter suggested a new mechanism for priming naïve B cell responses and manifested as the induction of SA-dependent pan-activation by peripheral blood B cells. BCR crosslinking in the absence of complementarity is a superantigen effect induced by some microbial products to subvert production of antigen-specific immune responses. B cell superantigen activity through affinity for BCR carbohydrate is discussed. PMID:27796362

  3. How Force Might Activate Talin's Vinculin Binding Sites: SMD Reveals a Structural Mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Hytönen, Vesa P; Vogel, Viola

    2008-01-01

    Upon cell adhesion, talin physically couples the cytoskeleton via integrins to the extracellular matrix, and subsequent vinculin recruitment is enhanced by locally applied tensile force. Since the vinculin binding (VB) sites are buried in the talin rod under equilibrium conditions, the structural mechanism of how vinculin binding to talin is force-activated remains unknown. Taken together with experimental data, a biphasic vinculin binding model, as derived from steered molecular dynamics, provides high resolution structural insights how tensile mechanical force applied to the talin rod fragment (residues 486–889 constituting helices H1–H12) might activate the VB sites. Fragmentation of the rod into three helix subbundles is prerequisite to the sequential exposure of VB helices to water. Finally, unfolding of a VB helix into a completely stretched polypeptide might inhibit further binding of vinculin. The first events in fracturing the H1–H12 rods of talin1 and talin2 in subbundles are similar. The proposed force-activated α-helix swapping mechanism by which vinculin binding sites in talin rods are exposed works distinctly different from that of other force-activated bonds, including catch bonds. PMID:18282082

  4. Transcriptomic sequencing reveals a set of unique genes activated by butyrate-induced histone modification

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Butyrate is a nutritional element with strong epigenetic regulatory activity as an inhibitor of histone deacetylases (HDACs). Based on the analysis of differentially expressed genes induced by butyrate in the bovine epithelial cell using deep RNA-sequencing technology (RNA-seq), a set of unique gen...

  5. Increasing AIP Macrocycle Size Reveals Key Features of agr Activation in Staphylococcus aureus.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Jeffrey G; Wang, Boyuan; Debelouchina, Galia T; Novick, Richard P; Muir, Tom W

    2015-05-04

    The agr locus in the commensal human pathogen, Staphylococcus aureus, is a two-promoter regulon with allelic variability that produces a quorum-sensing circuit involved in regulating virulence within the bacterium. Secretion of unique autoinducing peptides (AIPs) and detection of their concentrations by AgrC, a transmembrane receptor histidine kinase, coordinates local bacterial population density with global changes in gene expression. The finding that staphylococcal virulence can be inhibited through antagonism of this quorum-sensing pathway has fueled tremendous interest in understanding the structure-activity relationships underlying the AIP-AgrC interaction. The defining structural feature of the AIP is a 16-membered, thiolactone-containing macrocycle. Surprisingly, the importance of ring size on agr activation or inhibition has not been explored. In this study, we address this deficiency through the synthesis and functional analysis of AIP analogues featuring enlarged and reduced macrocycles. Notably, this study is the first to interrogate AIP function by using both established cell-based reporter gene assays and newly developed in vitro AgrC-I binding and autophosphorylation activity assays. Based on our data, we present a model for robust agr activation involving a cooperative, three-points-of-contact interaction between the AIP macrocycle and AgrC.

  6. Event-related potentials reveal early activation of body part representations in action concept comprehension.

    PubMed

    Lu, Aitao; Liu, Jing; Zhang, John X

    2012-03-09

    With tasks involving action concept comprehension, many fMRI studies have reported brain activations in sensori-motor regions specific to effectors of the referent action. There is relatively less evidence whether such activations reflect early semantic access or late conceptual re-processing. Here we recorded event-related potentials when participants recognized noun-verb pairs. For Congruent pairs, the verb was the one most commonly associated with the noun (e.g., football-kick). Compared with a control condition, verbs in Congruent pairs showed priming effects in the time windows of 100-150 ms and 210-260 ms. Such activation seems to be specific to body part but not other aspects of the action as similar priming effect was also found when the noun and verb involved different actions though sharing the same body part (e.g., football-jump), documenting for the first time the early activation of body part representations in action concept comprehension.

  7. Vector analysis of ecoenzyme activities reveal constraints on coupled C, N and P dynamics

    EPA Science Inventory

    We developed a quantitative method for estimating resource allocation strategies of microbial communities based on the proportional activities of four, key extracellular enzymes, 1,4-ß-glucosidase (BG), leucine amino-peptidase (LAP), 1,4-ß-N-acetylglucosaminidase (NAG...

  8. Ensemble Activation of G-Protein -Coupled Receptors Revealed by Small-Angle Neutron Scattering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, Xiang-Qiang; Perera, Suchithranga; Shrestha, Utsab; Chawla, Udeep; Struts, Andrey; Qian, Shuo; Brown, Michael

    2014-03-01

    Rhodopsin is a G-protein -coupled receptor (GPCR) involved in visual light perception and occurs naturally in a membrane lipid environment. Rhodopsin photoactivation yields cis-trans isomerization of retinal giving equilibrium between inactive Meta-I and active Meta-II states. Does photoactivation lead to a single Meta-II conformation, or do substates exist as described by an ensemble-activation mechanism (EAM)? We use small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) to investigate conformational changes in rhodopsin-detergent and rhodopsin-lipid complexes upon photoactivation. Meta-I state is stabilized in CHAPS-solubilized rhodopsin, while Meta-II is trapped in DDM-solubilized rhodopsin. SANS data are acquired from 80% D2O solutions and at contrast-matching points for both DDM and CHAPS samples. Our experiments demonstrate that for detergent-solubilized rhodopsin, SANS with contrast variation can detect structural differences between the rhodopsin dark-state, Meta-I, Meta-II, and ligand-free opsin states. Dark-state rhodopsin has more conformational flexibility in DDM micelles compared to CHAPS, which is consistent with an ensemble of activated Meta-II states. Furthermore, time-resolved SANS enables study of the time-dependent structural transitions between Meta-I and Meta-II, which is crucial to understanding the ensemble-based activation.

  9. Active role of the liquid phase of developer in revealing surface flaws by capillary methods

    SciTech Connect

    Prokhorenko, P.P.; Dezhkunov, N.V.; Stoicheva, I.V.

    1988-08-01

    The article investigates the interaction of two chemically nonreacting liquids after they have been brought into contact with each other in a capillary. It is established that the liquid phase of the developer is not only a passive carrier of the developing component but also exerts an active influence on the process of development, and consequently, on the detectability of flaws.

  10. Temporal quantitative phosphoproteomics of ADP stimulation reveals novel central nodes in platelet activation and inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Beck, Florian; Geiger, Jörg; Gambaryan, Stepan; Solari, Fiorella A.; Dell’Aica, Margherita; Loroch, Stefan; Mattheij, Nadine J.; Mindukshev, Igor; Pötz, Oliver; Jurk, Kerstin; Burkhart, Julia M.; Fufezan, Christian; Heemskerk, Johan W. M.; Walter, Ulrich

    2017-01-01

    Adenosine diphosphate (ADP) enhances platelet activation by virtually any other stimulant to complete aggregation. It binds specifically to the G-protein–coupled membrane receptors P2Y1 and P2Y12, stimulating intracellular signaling cascades, leading to integrin αIIbβ3 activation, a process antagonized by endothelial prostacyclin. P2Y12 inhibitors are among the most successful antiplatelet drugs, however, show remarkable variability in efficacy. We reasoned whether a more detailed molecular understanding of ADP-induced protein phosphorylation could identify (1) critical hubs in platelet signaling toward aggregation and (2) novel molecular targets for antiplatelet treatment strategies. We applied quantitative temporal phosphoproteomics to study ADP-mediated signaling at unprecedented molecular resolution. Furthermore, to mimic the antagonistic efficacy of endothelial-derived prostacyclin, we determined how Iloprost reverses ADP-mediated signaling events. We provide temporal profiles of 4797 phosphopeptides, 608 of which showed significant regulation. Regulated proteins are implicated in well-known activating functions such as degranulation and cytoskeletal reorganization, but also in less well-understood pathways, involving ubiquitin ligases and GTPase exchange factors/GTPase-activating proteins (GEF/GAP). Our data demonstrate that ADP-triggered phosphorylation occurs predominantly within the first 10 seconds, with many short rather than sustained changes. For a set of phosphorylation sites (eg, PDE3ASer312, CALDAG-GEFISer587, ENSASer109), we demonstrate an inverse regulation by ADP and Iloprost, suggesting that these are central modulators of platelet homeostasis. This study demonstrates an extensive spectrum of human platelet protein phosphorylation in response to ADP and Iloprost, which inversely overlap and represent major activating and inhibitory pathways. PMID:28060719

  11. Cingulate seizure-like activity reveals neuronal avalanche regulated by network excitability and thalamic inputs

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Cortical neurons display network-level dynamics with unique spatiotemporal patterns that construct the backbone of processing information signals and contribute to higher functions. Recent years have seen a wealth of research on the characteristics of neuronal networks that are sufficient conditions to activate or cease network functions. Local field potentials (LFPs) exhibit a scale-free and unique event size distribution (i.e., a neuronal avalanche) that has been proven in the cortex across species, including mice, rats, and humans, and may be used as an index of cortical excitability. In the present study, we induced seizure activity in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) with medial thalamic inputs and evaluated the impact of cortical excitability and thalamic inputs on network-level dynamics. We measured LFPs from multi-electrode recordings in mouse cortical slices and isoflurane-anesthetized rats. Results The ACC activity exhibited a neuronal avalanche with regard to avalanche size distribution, and the slope of the power-law distribution of the neuronal avalanche reflected network excitability in vitro and in vivo. We found that the slope of the neuronal avalanche in seizure-like activity significantly correlated with cortical excitability induced by γ-aminobutyric acid system manipulation. The thalamic inputs desynchronized cingulate seizures and affected the level of cortical excitability, the modulation of which could be determined by the slope of the avalanche size. Conclusions We propose that the neuronal avalanche may be a tool for analyzing cortical activity through LFPs to determine alterations in network dynamics. PMID:24387299

  12. Native Electrophoresis-Coupled Activity Assays Reveal Catalytically-Active Protein Aggregates of Escherichia coli β-Glucuronidase.

    PubMed

    Burchett, Gina G; Folsom, Charles G; Lane, Kimberly T

    2015-01-01

    β-glucuronidase is found as a functional homotetramer in a variety of organisms, including humans and other animals, as well as a number of bacteria. This enzyme is important in these organisms, catalyzing the hydrolytic removal of a glucuronide moiety from substrate molecules. This process serves to break down sugar conjugates in animals and provide sugars for metabolism in bacteria. While β-glucuronidase is primarily found as a homotetramer, previous studies have indicated that the human form of the protein is also catalytically active as a dimer. Here we present evidence for not only an active dimer of the E. coli form of the protein, but also for several larger active complexes, including an octomer and a 16-mer. Additionally, we propose a model for the structures of these large complexes, based on computationally-derived molecular modeling studies. These structures may have application in the study of human disease, as several diseases have been associated with the aggregation of proteins.

  13. Fractionation of a Herbal Antidiarrheal Medicine Reveals Eugenol as an Inhibitor of Ca2+-Activated Cl− Channel TMEM16A

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Zhen; Namkung, Wan; Ko, Eun A.; Park, Jinhong; Tradtrantip, Lukmanee; Verkman, A. S.

    2012-01-01

    The Ca2+-activated Cl− channel TMEM16A is involved in epithelial fluid secretion, smooth muscle contraction and neurosensory signaling. We identified a Thai herbal antidiarrheal formulation that inhibited TMEM16A Cl− conductance. C18-reversed-phase HPLC fractionation of the herbal formulation revealed >98% of TMEM16A inhibition activity in one out of approximately 20 distinct peaks. The purified, active compound was identified as eugenol (4-allyl-2-methoxyphenol), the major component of clove oil. Eugenol fully inhibited TMEM16A Cl− conductance with single-site IC50∼150 µM. Eugenol inhibition of TMEM16A in interstitial cells of Cajal produced strong inhibition of intestinal contraction in mouse ileal segments. TMEM16A Cl− channel inhibition adds to the list of eugenol molecular targets and may account for some of its biological activities. PMID:22666439

  14. 10Be surface exposure dating reveals strong active deformation in the central Andean backarc interior

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García Morabito, Ezequiel; Terrizzano, Carla; Zech, Roland; Willett, Sean; Yamin, Marcela; Haghipour, Negar; Wuethrich, Lorenz; Christl, Marcus; María Cortes, José; Ramos, Victor

    2016-04-01

    Understanding the deformation associated with active thrust wedges is essential to evaluate seismic hazard. How is active faulting distributed throughout the wedge, and how much deformation is taken up by individual structures? We address these questions for our study region, the central Andean backarc of Argentina. We combined a structural and geomorphological approach with surface exposure dating (10Be) of alluvial fans and strath terraces in two key localities at ~32° S: the Cerro Salinas, located in the active orogenic front of the Precordillera, and the Barreal block in the interior of the Andean mountain range. We analysed 22 surface samples and 6 depth profiles. At the thrust front, the oldest terrace (T1) yields an age of 100-130 ka, the intermediate terrace (T2) between 40-95 ka, and the youngest terrace (T3) an age of ~20 ka. In the Andean interior, T1´ dates to 117-146 ka, T2´ to ~70 ka, and T3´ to ~20 ka, all calculations assuming negligible erosion and using the scaling scheme for spallation based on Lal 1991, Stone 2000. Vertical slip rates of fault offsets are 0.3-0.5 mm/yr and of 0.6-1.2 mm/yr at the thrust front and in the Andean interior, respectively. Our results highlight: i) fault activity related to the growth of the Andean orogenic wedge is not only limited to a narrow thrust front zone. Internal structures have been active during the last 150 ka, ii) deformation rates in the Andean interior are comparable or even higher that those estimated and reported along the emerging thrust front, iii) distribution of active faulting seems to account for unsteady state conditions, and iv) seismic hazards may be more relevant in the internal parts of the Andean orogen than assumed so far. References Lal, D., 1991: Cosmic ray labeling of erosion surfaces: In situ nuclide production rates and erosion models. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 104: 424-439. Stone, J.O., 2000: Air pressure and cosmogenic isotope production. Journal of Geophysical

  15. A Global Genomic Screening Strategy Reveals Genetic and Chemical Activators ofPeroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor alpha (PPARalpha)

    EPA Science Inventory

    A comprehensive survey of chemical, diet and genetic perturbations that activate PPARalpha in the mouse liver has not been carried out but would be useful to identify the factors that may contribute to PPARalpha-dependent liver tumors. A gene signature dependent on PPARalpha ac...

  16. Biophysical assay for tethered signaling reactions reveals tether-controlled activity for the phosphatase SHP-1.

    PubMed

    Goyette, Jesse; Salas, Citlali Solis; Coker-Gordon, Nicola; Bridge, Marcus; Isaacson, Samuel A; Allard, Jun; Dushek, Omer

    2017-03-01

    Tethered enzymatic reactions are ubiquitous in signaling networks but are poorly understood. A previously unreported mathematical analysis is established for tethered signaling reactions in surface plasmon resonance (SPR). Applying the method to the phosphatase SHP-1 interacting with a phosphorylated tether corresponding to an immune receptor cytoplasmic tail provides five biophysical/biochemical constants from a single SPR experiment: two binding rates, two catalytic rates, and a reach parameter. Tether binding increases the activity of SHP-1 by 900-fold through a binding-induced allosteric activation (20-fold) and a more significant increase in local substrate concentration (45-fold). The reach parameter indicates that this local substrate concentration is exquisitely sensitive to receptor clustering. We further show that truncation of the tether leads not only to a lower reach but also to lower binding and catalysis. This work establishes a new framework for studying tethered signaling processes and highlights the tether as a control parameter in clustered receptor signaling.

  17. Biophysical assay for tethered signaling reactions reveals tether-controlled activity for the phosphatase SHP-1

    PubMed Central

    Goyette, Jesse; Salas, Citlali Solis; Coker-Gordon, Nicola; Bridge, Marcus; Isaacson, Samuel A.; Allard, Jun; Dushek, Omer

    2017-01-01

    Tethered enzymatic reactions are ubiquitous in signaling networks but are poorly understood. A previously unreported mathematical analysis is established for tethered signaling reactions in surface plasmon resonance (SPR). Applying the method to the phosphatase SHP-1 interacting with a phosphorylated tether corresponding to an immune receptor cytoplasmic tail provides five biophysical/biochemical constants from a single SPR experiment: two binding rates, two catalytic rates, and a reach parameter. Tether binding increases the activity of SHP-1 by 900-fold through a binding-induced allosteric activation (20-fold) and a more significant increase in local substrate concentration (45-fold). The reach parameter indicates that this local substrate concentration is exquisitely sensitive to receptor clustering. We further show that truncation of the tether leads not only to a lower reach but also to lower binding and catalysis. This work establishes a new framework for studying tethered signaling processes and highlights the tether as a control parameter in clustered receptor signaling. PMID:28378014

  18. Revealing the Origin of Activity in Nitrogen-Doped Nanocarbons towards Electrocatalytic Reduction of Carbon Dioxide.

    PubMed

    Xu, Junyuan; Kan, Yuhe; Huang, Rui; Zhang, Bingsen; Wang, Bolun; Wu, Kuang-Hsu; Lin, Yangming; Sun, Xiaoyan; Li, Qingfeng; Centi, Gabriele; Su, Dangsheng

    2016-05-23

    Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are functionalized with nitrogen atoms for reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2 ). The investigation explores the origin of the catalyst's activity and the role of nitrogen chemical states therein. The catalysts show excellent performances, with about 90 % current efficiency for CO formation and stability over 60 hours. The Tafel analyses and density functional theory calculations suggest that the reduction of CO2 proceeds through an initial rate-determining transfer of one electron to CO2 , which leads to the formation of carbon dioxide radical anion (CO2 (.-) ). The initial reduction barrier is too high on pristine CNTs, resulting in a very high overpotentials at which the hydrogen evolution reaction dominates over CO2 reduction. The doped nitrogen atoms stabilize the radical anion, thereby lowering the initial reduction barrier and improving the intrinsic activity. The most efficient nitrogen chemical state for this reaction is quaternary nitrogen, followed by pyridinic and pyrrolic nitrogen.

  19. Integrated Experimental and Model-based Analysis Reveals the Spatial Aspects of EGFR Activation Dynamics

    SciTech Connect

    Shankaran, Harish; Zhang, Yi; Chrisler, William B.; Ewald, Jonathan A.; Wiley, H. S.; Resat, Haluk

    2012-10-02

    The epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) belongs to the ErbB family of receptor tyrosine kinases, and controls a diverse set of cellular responses relevant to development and tumorigenesis. ErbB activation is a complex process involving receptor-ligand binding, receptor dimerization, phosphorylation, and trafficking (internalization, recycling and degradation), which together dictate the spatio-temporal distribution of active receptors within the cell. The ability to predict this distribution, and elucidation of the factors regulating it, would help to establish a mechanistic link between ErbB expression levels and the cellular response. Towards this end, we constructed mathematical models for deconvolving the contributions of receptor dimerization and phosphorylation to EGFR activation, and to examine the dependence of these processes on sub-cellular location. We collected experimental datasets for EGFR activation dynamics in human mammary epithelial cells, with the specific goal of model parameterization, and used the data to estimate parameters for several alternate models. Model-based analysis indicated that: 1) signal termination via receptor dephosphorylation in late endosomes, prior to degradation, is an important component of the response, 2) less than 40% of the receptors in the cell are phosphorylated at any given time, even at saturating ligand doses, and 3) receptor dephosphorylation rates at the cell surface and early endosomes are comparable. We validated the last finding by measuring EGFR dephosphorylation rates at various times following ligand addition both in whole cells, and in endosomes using ELISAs and fluorescent imaging. Overall, our results provide important information on how EGFR phosphorylation levels are regulated within cells. Further, the mathematical model described here can be extended to determine receptor dimer abundances in cells co-expressing various levels of ErbB receptors. This study demonstrates that an iterative cycle of

  20. Biases during DNA extraction of activated sludge samples revealed by high throughput sequencing.

    PubMed

    Guo, Feng; Zhang, Tong

    2013-05-01

    Standardization of DNA extraction is a fundamental issue of fidelity and comparability in investigations of environmental microbial communities. Commercial kits for soil or feces are often adopted for studies of activated sludge because of a lack of specific kits, but they have never been evaluated regarding their effectiveness and potential biases based on high throughput sequencing. In this study, seven common DNA extraction kits were evaluated, based on not only yield/purity but also sequencing results, using two activated sludge samples (two sub-samples each, i.e. ethanol-fixed and fresh, as-is). The results indicate that the bead-beating step is necessary for DNA extraction from activated sludge. The two kits without the bead-beating step yielded very low amounts of DNA, and the least abundant operational taxonomic units (OTUs), and significantly underestimated the Gram-positive Actinobacteria, Nitrospirae, Chloroflexi, and Alphaproteobacteria and overestimated Gammaproteobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and the rare phyla whose cell walls might have been readily broken. Among the other five kits, FastDNA(@) SPIN Kit for Soil extracted the most and the purest DNA. Although the number of total OTUs obtained using this kit was not the highest, the abundant OTUs and abundance of Actinobacteria demonstrated its efficiency. The three MoBio kits and one ZR kit produced fair results, but had a relatively low DNA yield and/or less Actinobacteria-related sequences. Moreover, the 50 % ethanol fixation increased the DNA yield, but did not change the sequenced microbial community in a significant way. Based on the present study, the FastDNA SPIN kit for Soil is recommended for DNA extraction of activated sludge samples. More importantly, the selection of the DNA extraction kit must be done carefully if the samples contain dominant lysing-resistant groups, such as Actinobacteria and Nitrospirae.

  1. A new autocatalytic activation mechanism for cysteine proteases revealed by Prevotella intermedia interpain A

    PubMed Central

    Mallorquí-Fernández, Noemí; Manandhar, Surya P.; Mallorquí-Fernández, Goretti; Usón, Isabel; Wawrzonek, Katarzyna; Kantyka, Tomasz; Solà, Maria; Thøgersen, Ida B.; Enghild, Jan J.; Potempa, Jan; Gomis-Rüth, F.Xavier

    2009-01-01

    Prevotella intermedia is a major periodontopathogen contributing to human gingivitis and periodontitis. Such pathogens release proteases as virulence factors that cause deterrence of host defences and tissue destruction. A new cysteine protease from the cysteine-histidine-dyad class, interpain A, was studied in its zymogenic and its self-processed mature form. The latter consists of a bivalved moiety made up by two subdomains. In the structure of a catalytic cysteine-to-alanine zymogen variant, the right subdomain interacts with an unusual prodomain, thus contributing to latency. Unlike the catalytic cysteine residue, already in its competent conformation in the zymogen, the catalytic histidine is swung out from its active conformation and trapped in a cage shaped by a backing helix, a zymogenic hairpin and a latency flap in the zymogen. Dramatic rearrangement of up to 20Å of these elements triggered by a tryptophan switch occurs during activation and accounts for a new activation mechanism for proteolytic enzymes. These findings can be extrapolated to related potentially pathogenic cysteine proteases such as Streprococcus pyogenes SpeB and Porphyromonas gingivalis periodontain. PMID:17993455

  2. Digital Health: Tracking Physiomes and Activity Using Wearable Biosensors Reveals Useful Health-Related Information

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Gao; Zhou, Wenyu; Schüssler-Fiorenza Rose, Sophia Miryam; Perelman, Dalia; Colbert, Elizabeth; Runge, Ryan; Rego, Shannon; Sonecha, Ria; Datta, Somalee; McLaughlin, Tracey; Snyder, Michael P.

    2017-01-01

    A new wave of portable biosensors allows frequent measurement of health-related physiology. We investigated the use of these devices to monitor human physiological changes during various activities and their role in managing health and diagnosing and analyzing disease. By recording over 250,000 daily measurements for up to 43 individuals, we found personalized circadian differences in physiological parameters, replicating previous physiological findings. Interestingly, we found striking changes in particular environments, such as airline flights (decreased peripheral capillary oxygen saturation [SpO2] and increased radiation exposure). These events are associated with physiological macro-phenotypes such as fatigue, providing a strong association between reduced pressure/oxygen and fatigue on high-altitude flights. Importantly, we combined biosensor information with frequent medical measurements and made two important observations: First, wearable devices were useful in identification of early signs of Lyme disease and inflammatory responses; we used this information to develop a personalized, activity-based normalization framework to identify abnormal physiological signals from longitudinal data for facile disease detection. Second, wearables distinguish physiological differences between insulin-sensitive and -resistant individuals. Overall, these results indicate that portable biosensors provide useful information for monitoring personal activities and physiology and are likely to play an important role in managing health and enabling affordable health care access to groups traditionally limited by socioeconomic class or remote geography. PMID:28081144

  3. Molecular Dynamics Simulations Reveal the Mechanisms of Allosteric Activation of Hsp90 by Designed Ligands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vettoretti, Gerolamo; Moroni, Elisabetta; Sattin, Sara; Tao, Jiahui; Agard, David A.; Bernardi, Anna; Colombo, Giorgio

    2016-04-01

    Controlling biochemical pathways through chemically designed modulators may provide novel opportunities to develop therapeutic drugs and chemical tools. The underlying challenge is to design new molecular entities able to act as allosteric chemical switches that selectively turn on/off functions by modulating the conformational dynamics of their target protein. We examine the origins of the stimulation of ATPase and closure kinetics in the molecular chaperone Hsp90 by allosteric modulators through atomistic molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and analysis of protein-ligand interactions. In particular, we focus on the cross-talk between allosteric ligands and protein conformations and its effect on the dynamic properties of the chaperone’s active state. We examine the impact of different allosteric modulators on the stability, structural and internal dynamics properties of Hsp90 closed state. A critical aspect of this study is the development of a quantitative model that correlates Hsp90 activation to the presence of a certain compound, making use of information on the dynamic adaptation of protein conformations to the presence of the ligand, which allows to capture conformational states relevant in the activation process. We discuss the implications of considering the conformational dialogue between allosteric ligands and protein conformations for the design of new functional modulators.

  4. Molecular Dynamics Simulations Reveal the Mechanisms of Allosteric Activation of Hsp90 by Designed Ligands

    PubMed Central

    Vettoretti, Gerolamo; Moroni, Elisabetta; Sattin, Sara; Tao, Jiahui; Agard, David A.; Bernardi, Anna; Colombo, Giorgio

    2016-01-01

    Controlling biochemical pathways through chemically designed modulators may provide novel opportunities to develop therapeutic drugs and chemical tools. The underlying challenge is to design new molecular entities able to act as allosteric chemical switches that selectively turn on/off functions by modulating the conformational dynamics of their target protein. We examine the origins of the stimulation of ATPase and closure kinetics in the molecular chaperone Hsp90 by allosteric modulators through atomistic molecular dynamics (MD) simulations and analysis of protein-ligand interactions. In particular, we focus on the cross-talk between allosteric ligands and protein conformations and its effect on the dynamic properties of the chaperone’s active state. We examine the impact of different allosteric modulators on the stability, structural and internal dynamics properties of Hsp90 closed state. A critical aspect of this study is the development of a quantitative model that correlates Hsp90 activation to the presence of a certain compound, making use of information on the dynamic adaptation of protein conformations to the presence of the ligand, which allows to capture conformational states relevant in the activation process. We discuss the implications of considering the conformational dialogue between allosteric ligands and protein conformations for the design of new functional modulators. PMID:27032695

  5. Using Carbohydrate Interaction Assays to Reveal Novel Binding Sites in Carbohydrate Active Enzymes

    PubMed Central

    Wilkens, Casper; Dilokpimol, Adiphol; Nakai, Hiroyuki; Lewińska, Anna; Abou Hachem, Maher; Svensson, Birte

    2016-01-01

    Carbohydrate active enzymes often contain auxiliary binding sites located either on independent domains termed carbohydrate binding modules (CBMs) or as so-called surface binding sites (SBSs) on the catalytic module at a certain distance from the active site. The SBSs are usually critical for the activity of their cognate enzyme, though they are not readily detected in the sequence of a protein, but normally require a crystal structure of a complex for their identification. A variety of methods, including affinity electrophoresis (AE), insoluble polysaccharide pulldown (IPP) and surface plasmon resonance (SPR) have been used to study auxiliary binding sites. These techniques are complementary as AE allows monitoring of binding to soluble polysaccharides, IPP to insoluble polysaccharides and SPR to oligosaccharides. Here we show that these methods are useful not only for analyzing known binding sites, but also for identifying new ones, even without structural data available. We further verify the chosen assays discriminate between known SBS/CBM containing enzymes and negative controls. Altogether 35 enzymes are screened for the presence of SBSs or CBMs and several novel binding sites are identified, including the first SBS ever reported in a cellulase. This work demonstrates that combinations of these methods can be used as a part of routine enzyme characterization to identify new binding sites and advance the study of SBSs and CBMs, allowing them to be detected in the absence of structural data. PMID:27504624

  6. Structural basis for PPAR partial or full activation revealed by a novel ligand binding mode

    PubMed Central

    Capelli, Davide; Cerchia, Carmen; Montanari, Roberta; Loiodice, Fulvio; Tortorella, Paolo; Laghezza, Antonio; Cervoni, Laura; Pochetti, Giorgio; Lavecchia, Antonio

    2016-01-01

    The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are nuclear receptors involved in the regulation of the metabolic homeostasis and therefore represent valuable therapeutic targets for the treatment of metabolic diseases. The development of more balanced drugs interacting with PPARs, devoid of the side-effects showed by the currently marketed PPARγ full agonists, is considered the major challenge for the pharmaceutical companies. Here we present a structure-based virtual screening approach that let us identify a novel PPAR pan-agonist with a very attractive activity profile and its crystal structure in the complex with PPARα and PPARγ, respectively. In PPARα this ligand occupies a new pocket whose filling is allowed by the ligand-induced switching of the F273 side chain from a closed to an open conformation. The comparison between this pocket and the corresponding cavity in PPARγ provides a rationale for the different activation of the ligand towards PPARα and PPARγ, suggesting a novel basis for ligand design. PMID:27708429

  7. Substrate-binding specificity of chitinase and chitosanase as revealed by active-site architecture analysis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shijia; Shao, Shangjin; Li, Linlin; Cheng, Zhi; Tian, Li; Gao, Peiji; Wang, Lushan

    2015-12-11

    Chitinases and chitosanases, referred to as chitinolytic enzymes, are two important categories of glycoside hydrolases (GH) that play a key role in degrading chitin and chitosan, two naturally abundant polysaccharides. Here, we investigate the active site architecture of the major chitosanase (GH8, GH46) and chitinase families (GH18, GH19). Both charged (Glu, His, Arg, Asp) and aromatic amino acids (Tyr, Trp, Phe) are observed with higher frequency within chitinolytic active sites as compared to elsewhere in the enzyme structure, indicating significant roles related to enzyme function. Hydrogen bonds between chitinolytic enzymes and the substrate C2 functional groups, i.e. amino groups and N-acetyl groups, drive substrate recognition, while non-specific CH-π interactions between aromatic residues and substrate mainly contribute to tighter binding and enhanced processivity evident in GH8 and GH18 enzymes. For different families of chitinolytic enzymes, the number, type, and position of substrate atoms bound in the active site vary, resulting in different substrate-binding specificities. The data presented here explain the synergistic action of multiple enzyme families at a molecular level and provide a more reasonable method for functional annotation, which can be further applied toward the practical engineering of chitinases and chitosanases.

  8. Digital Health: Tracking Physiomes and Activity Using Wearable Biosensors Reveals Useful Health-Related Information.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiao; Dunn, Jessilyn; Salins, Denis; Zhou, Gao; Zhou, Wenyu; Schüssler-Fiorenza Rose, Sophia Miryam; Perelman, Dalia; Colbert, Elizabeth; Runge, Ryan; Rego, Shannon; Sonecha, Ria; Datta, Somalee; McLaughlin, Tracey; Snyder, Michael P

    2017-01-01

    A new wave of portable biosensors allows frequent measurement of health-related physiology. We investigated the use of these devices to monitor human physiological changes during various activities and their role in managing health and diagnosing and analyzing disease. By recording over 250,000 daily measurements for up to 43 individuals, we found personalized circadian differences in physiological parameters, replicating previous physiological findings. Interestingly, we found striking changes in particular environments, such as airline flights (decreased peripheral capillary oxygen saturation [SpO2] and increased radiation exposure). These events are associated with physiological macro-phenotypes such as fatigue, providing a strong association between reduced pressure/oxygen and fatigue on high-altitude flights. Importantly, we combined biosensor information with frequent medical measurements and made two important observations: First, wearable devices were useful in identification of early signs of Lyme disease and inflammatory responses; we used this information to develop a personalized, activity-based normalization framework to identify abnormal physiological signals from longitudinal data for facile disease detection. Second, wearables distinguish physiological differences between insulin-sensitive and -resistant individuals. Overall, these results indicate that portable biosensors provide useful information for monitoring personal activities and physiology and are likely to play an important role in managing health and enabling affordable health care access to groups traditionally limited by socioeconomic class or remote geography.

  9. A new autocatalytic activation mechanism for cysteine proteases revealed by Prevotella intermedia interpain A.

    PubMed

    Mallorquí-Fernández, Noemí; Manandhar, Surya P; Mallorquí-Fernández, Goretti; Usón, Isabel; Wawrzonek, Katarzyna; Kantyka, Tomasz; Solà, Maria; Thøgersen, Ida B; Enghild, Jan J; Potempa, Jan; Gomis-Rüth, F Xavier

    2008-02-01

    Prevotella intermedia is a major periodontopathogen contributing to human gingivitis and periodontitis. Such pathogens release proteases as virulence factors that cause deterrence of host defenses and tissue destruction. A new cysteine protease from the cysteine-histidine-dyad class, interpain A, was studied in its zymogenic and self-processed mature forms. The latter consists of a bivalved moiety made up by two subdomains. In the structure of a catalytic cysteine-to-alanine zymogen variant, the right subdomain interacts with an unusual prodomain, thus contributing to latency. Unlike the catalytic cysteine residue, already in its competent conformation in the zymogen, the catalytic histidine is swung out from its active conformation and trapped in a cage shaped by a backing helix, a zymogenic hairpin, and a latency flap in the zymogen. Dramatic rearrangement of up to 20A of these elements triggered by a tryptophan switch occurs during activation and accounts for a new activation mechanism for proteolytic enzymes. These findings can be extrapolated to related potentially pathogenic cysteine proteases such as Streprococcus pyogenes SpeB and Porphyromonas gingivalis periodontain.

  10. Retinal orientation and interactions in rhodopsin reveal a two-stage trigger mechanism for activation

    PubMed Central

    Kimata, Naoki; Pope, Andreyah; Eilers, Markus; Opefi, Chikwado A.; Ziliox, Martine; Hirshfeld, Amiram; Zaitseva, Ekaterina; Vogel, Reiner; Sheves, Mordechai; Reeves, Philip J.; Smith, Steven O.

    2016-01-01

    The 11-cis retinal chromophore is tightly packed within the interior of the visual receptor rhodopsin and isomerizes to the all-trans configuration following absorption of light. The mechanism by which this isomerization event drives the outward rotation of transmembrane helix H6, a hallmark of activated G protein-coupled receptors, is not well established. To address this question, we use solid-state NMR and FTIR spectroscopy to define the orientation and interactions of the retinal chromophore in the active metarhodopsin II intermediate. Here we show that isomerization of the 11-cis retinal chromophore generates strong steric interactions between its β-ionone ring and transmembrane helices H5 and H6, while deprotonation of its protonated Schiff's base triggers the rearrangement of the hydrogen-bonding network involving residues on H6 and within the second extracellular loop. We integrate these observations with previous structural and functional studies to propose a two-stage mechanism for rhodopsin activation. PMID:27585742

  11. Polycomb repressive complex 2 structure with inhibitor reveals a mechanism of activation and drug resistance

    PubMed Central

    Brooun, Alexei; Gajiwala, Ketan S.; Deng, Ya-Li; Liu, Wei; Bolaños, Ben; Bingham, Patrick; He, You-Ai; Diehl, Wade; Grable, Nicole; Kung, Pei-Pei; Sutton, Scott; Maegley, Karen A.; Yu, Xiu; Stewart, Al E.

    2016-01-01

    Polycomb repressive complex 2 (PRC2) mediates gene silencing through chromatin reorganization by methylation of histone H3 lysine 27 (H3K27). Overexpression of the complex and point mutations in the individual subunits of PRC2 have been shown to contribute to tumorigenesis. Several inhibitors of the PRC2 activity have shown efficacy in EZH2-mutated lymphomas and are currently in clinical development, although the molecular basis of inhibitor recognition remains unknown. Here we report the crystal structures of the inhibitor-bound wild-type and Y641N PRC2. The structures illuminate an important role played by a stretch of 17 residues in the N-terminal region of EZH2, we call the activation loop, in the stimulation of the enzyme activity, inhibitor recognition and the potential development of the mutation-mediated drug resistance. The work presented here provides new avenues for the design and development of next-generation PRC2 inhibitors through establishment of a structure-based drug design platform. PMID:27122193

  12. A Sleeping Beauty screen reveals NF-kB activation in CLL mouse model.

    PubMed

    Zanesi, Nicola; Balatti, Veronica; Riordan, Jesse; Burch, Aaron; Rizzotto, Lara; Palamarchuk, Alexey; Cascione, Luciano; Lagana, Alessandro; Dupuy, Adam J; Croce, Carlo M; Pekarsky, Yuri

    2013-05-23

    TCL1 oncogene is overexpressed in aggressive form of human chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and its dysregulation in mouse B cells causes a CD5-positive leukemia similar to the aggressive form of human CLLs. To identify oncogenes that cooperate with Tcl1, we performed genetic screen in Eμ-TCL1 mice using Sleeping Beauty transposon-mediated mutagenesis. Analysis of transposon common insertion sites identified 7 genes activated by transposon insertions. Overexpression of these genes in mouse CLL was confirmed by real time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Interestingly, the main known function of 4 of 7 genes (Nfkb1, Tab2, Map3K14, and Nfkbid) is participation in or activation of the nuclear factor-kB (NF-kB) pathway. In addition, activation of the NF-kB is 1 of main functions of Akt2, also identified in the screen. These findings demonstrate cooperation of Tcl1 and the NF-kB pathway in the pathogenesis of aggressive CLL. Identification cooperating cancer genes will result in the development of combinatorial therapies to treat CLL.

  13. Testing Unification Models in Dual Active Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muller-Sanchez, Francisco

    Dual active galactic nuclei (AGNs), which are kpc-scale separation AGN pairs in galaxy mergers, are ideal targets for testing unification models and models of galaxy evolution. By definition, the AGN nature of the two nuclei suggests that they must be consistent with standard unification models (i.e, a dusty torus obscures the central engine in type 2 AGN). At the same time, they are the result of merger-induced nuclear activity. Galaxy evolution models suggest that merger-induced AGNs are heavily obscured for long periods by the high gas densities powering them. Eventually, feedback drives away material, creating a brief window in time in which the AGN is not obscured. Therefore, in these models, there is no need for a small-scale torus. We are constructing for the first time the spectral energy distributions (SEDs) of the two AGNs in dual AGN systems using data from Hubble and Chandra telescopes, in combination with VLA, Keck and VLT data. However, a critical missing component is dust emission at 30-40 microns, which can only be achieved by SOFIA. We propose FORCAST 31.5 and 37.1 microns observations of the complete sample of 5 confirmed dual AGNs with angular separations >3.5". As suggested by current models, the best wavelength to detect thermal emission from a torus would be between 30-40 microns, where both the non-thermal core and the stellar emission sharply decline, and the torus emission peaks. Thus, FORCAST provides 1) the best angular resolution between 30-40 microns of the current suite of instruments, crucial to separate the emission from the two AGNs, and 2) the largest constraining power for torus models, crucial to characterize the properties of the torus in AGNs.

  14. Active faults in the deformation zone off Noto Peninsula, Japan, revealed by high- resolution seismic profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Inoue, T.; Okamura, Y.; Murakami, F.; Kimura, H.; Ikehara, K.

    2008-12-01

    Recently, a lot of earthquakes occur in Japan. The deformation zone which many faults and folds have concentrated exists on the Japan Sea side of Japan. The 2007 Noto Hanto Earthquake (MJMA 6.9) and 2007 Chuetsu-oki Earthquake (MJMA 6.8) were caused by activity of parts of faults in this deformation zone. The Noto Hanto Earthquake occurred on 25 March, 2007 under the northwestern coast of Noto Peninsula, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan. This earthquake is located in Quaternary deformation zone that is continued from northern margin of Noto Peninsula to southeast direction (Okamura, 2007a). National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) carried out high-resolution seismic survey using Boomer and 12 channels short streamer cable in the northern part off Noto Peninsula, in order to clarify distribution and activities of active faults in the deformation zone. A twelve channels short streamer cable with 2.5 meter channel spacing developed by AIST and private corporation is designed to get high resolution seismic profiles in shallow sea area. The multi-channel system is possible to equip on a small fishing boat, because the data acquisition system is based on PC and the length of the cable is short and easy to handle. Moreover, because the channel spacing is short, this cable is very effective for a high- resolution seismic profiling survey in the shallow sea, and seismic data obtained by multi-channel cable can be improved by velocity analysis and CDP stack. In the northern part off Noto Peninsula, seismic profiles depicting geologic structure up to 100 meters deep under sea floor were obtained. The most remarkable reflection surface recognized in the seismic profiles is erosion surface at the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). In the western part, sediments about 30 meters (40 msec) thick cover the erosional surface that is distributed under the shelf shallower than 100m in depth and the sediments thin toward offshore and east. Flexures like deformation in

  15. Stability of active mantle upwelling revealed by net characteristics of plate tectonics.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Clinton P; Steinberger, Bernhard; Torsvik, Trond H

    2013-06-27

    Viscous convection within the mantle is linked to tectonic plate motions and deforms Earth's surface across wide areas. Such close links between surface geology and deep mantle dynamics presumably operated throughout Earth's history, but are difficult to investigate for past times because the history of mantle flow is poorly known. Here we show that the time dependence of global-scale mantle flow can be deduced from the net behaviour of surface plate motions. In particular, we tracked the geographic locations of net convergence and divergence for harmonic degrees 1 and 2 by computing the dipole and quadrupole moments of plate motions from tectonic reconstructions extended back to the early Mesozoic era. For present-day plate motions, we find dipole convergence in eastern Asia and quadrupole divergence in both central Africa and the central Pacific. These orientations are nearly identical to the dipole and quadrupole orientations of underlying mantle flow, which indicates that these 'net characteristics' of plate motions reveal deeper flow patterns. The positions of quadrupole divergence have not moved significantly during the past 250 million years, which suggests long-term stability of mantle upwelling beneath Africa and the Pacific Ocean. These upwelling locations are positioned above two compositionally and seismologically distinct regions of the lowermost mantle, which may organize global mantle flow as they remain stationary over geologic time.

  16. DOPAMINE RECEPTOR ACTIVATION REVEALS A NOVEL, KYNURENATE-SENSITIVE COMPONENT OF STRIATAL NMDA NEUROTOXICITY

    PubMed Central

    Poeggeler, Burkhard; Rassoulpour, Arash; Wu, Hui-Qiu; Guidetti, Paolo; Roberts, Rosalinda C.; Schwarcz, Robert

    2007-01-01

    The N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) subtype of glutamate receptors plays an important role in brain physiology, but excessive receptor stimulation results in seizures and excitotoxic nerve cell death. NMDA receptor-mediated neuronal excitation and injury can be prevented by high, non-physiological concentrations of the neuroinhibitory tryptophan metabolite kynurenic acid (KYNA). Here we report that endogenous KYNA, which is formed in and released from astrocytes, controls NMDA receptors in vivo. This was revealed with the aid of the dopaminergic drugs d-amphetamine and apomorphine, which cause rapid, transient decreases in striatal KYNA levels in rats. Intrastriatal injections of the excitotoxins NMDA or quinolinate (but not the non-NMDA receptor agonist kainate) at the time of maximal KYNA reduction resulted in 2-3-fold increases in excitotoxic lesion size. Pre-treatment with kynurenine 3-hydroxylase inhibitors or dopamine receptor antagonists, two classes of pharmacological agents that prevented the reduction in brain KYNA caused by dopaminergic stimulation, abolished the potentiation of neurotoxicity. Thus, the present study identifies a previously unappreciated role of KYNA as a functional link between dopamine receptor stimulation and NMDA neurotoxicity in the striatum. PMID:17629627

  17. Distinct summer and winter bacterial communities in the active layer of Svalbard permafrost revealed by DNA- and RNA-based analyses

    SciTech Connect

    Schostag, Morten; Stibal, Marek; Jacobsen, Carsten S.; Bælum, Jacob; Taş, Neslihan; Elberling, Bo; Jansson, Janet K.; Semenchuk, Philipp; Priemé, Anders

    2015-04-30

    The active layer of soil overlaying permafrost in the Arctic is subjected to dramatic annual changes in temperature and soil chemistry, which likely affect bacterial activity and community structure. We studied seasonal variations in the bacterial community of active layer soil from Svalbard (78°N) by co-extracting DNA and RNA from 12 soil cores collected monthly over a year. PCR amplicons of 16S rRNA genes (DNA) and reverse transcribed transcripts (cDNA) were quantified and sequenced to test for the effect of low winter temperature and seasonal variation in concentration of easily degradable organic matter on the bacterial communities. The copy number of 16S rRNA genes and transcripts revealed no distinct seasonal changes indicating potential bacterial activity during winter despite soil temperatures well below -10°C. Multivariate statistical analysis of the bacterial diversity data (DNA and cDNA libraries) revealed a season-based clustering of the samples, and, e.g., the relative abundance of potentially active Cyanobacteria peaked in June and Alphaproteobacteria increased over the summer and then declined from October to November. The structure of the bulk (DNA-based) community was significantly correlated with pH and dissolved organic carbon, while the potentially active (RNA-based) community structure was not significantly correlated with any of the measured soil parameters. A large fraction of the 16S rRNA transcripts was assigned to nitrogen-fixing bacteria (up to 24% in June) and phototrophic organisms (up to 48% in June) illustrating the potential importance of nitrogen fixation in otherwise nitrogen poor Arctic ecosystems and of phototrophic bacterial activity on the soil surface.

  18. Distinct summer and winter bacterial communities in the active layer of Svalbard permafrost revealed by DNA- and RNA-based analyses

    DOE PAGES

    Schostag, Morten; Stibal, Marek; Jacobsen, Carsten S.; ...

    2015-04-30

    The active layer of soil overlaying permafrost in the Arctic is subjected to dramatic annual changes in temperature and soil chemistry, which likely affect bacterial activity and community structure. We studied seasonal variations in the bacterial community of active layer soil from Svalbard (78°N) by co-extracting DNA and RNA from 12 soil cores collected monthly over a year. PCR amplicons of 16S rRNA genes (DNA) and reverse transcribed transcripts (cDNA) were quantified and sequenced to test for the effect of low winter temperature and seasonal variation in concentration of easily degradable organic matter on the bacterial communities. The copy numbermore » of 16S rRNA genes and transcripts revealed no distinct seasonal changes indicating potential bacterial activity during winter despite soil temperatures well below -10°C. Multivariate statistical analysis of the bacterial diversity data (DNA and cDNA libraries) revealed a season-based clustering of the samples, and, e.g., the relative abundance of potentially active Cyanobacteria peaked in June and Alphaproteobacteria increased over the summer and then declined from October to November. The structure of the bulk (DNA-based) community was significantly correlated with pH and dissolved organic carbon, while the potentially active (RNA-based) community structure was not significantly correlated with any of the measured soil parameters. A large fraction of the 16S rRNA transcripts was assigned to nitrogen-fixing bacteria (up to 24% in June) and phototrophic organisms (up to 48% in June) illustrating the potential importance of nitrogen fixation in otherwise nitrogen poor Arctic ecosystems and of phototrophic bacterial activity on the soil surface.« less

  19. Distinct summer and winter bacterial communities in the active layer of Svalbard permafrost revealed by DNA- and RNA-based analyses

    PubMed Central

    Schostag, Morten; Stibal, Marek; Jacobsen, Carsten S.; Bælum, Jacob; Taş, Neslihan; Elberling, Bo; Jansson, Janet K.; Semenchuk, Philipp; Priemé, Anders

    2015-01-01

    The active layer of soil overlaying permafrost in the Arctic is subjected to dramatic annual changes in temperature and soil chemistry, which likely affect bacterial activity and community structure. We studied seasonal variations in the bacterial community of active layer soil from Svalbard (78°N) by co-extracting DNA and RNA from 12 soil cores collected monthly over a year. PCR amplicons of 16S rRNA genes (DNA) and reverse transcribed transcripts (cDNA) were quantified and sequenced to test for the effect of low winter temperature and seasonal variation in concentration of easily degradable organic matter on the bacterial communities. The copy number of 16S rRNA genes and transcripts revealed no distinct seasonal changes indicating potential bacterial activity during winter despite soil temperatures well below −10°C. Multivariate statistical analysis of the bacterial diversity data (DNA and cDNA libraries) revealed a season-based clustering of the samples, and, e.g., the relative abundance of potentially active Cyanobacteria peaked in June and Alphaproteobacteria increased over the summer and then declined from October to November. The structure of the bulk (DNA-based) community was significantly correlated with pH and dissolved organic carbon, while the potentially active (RNA-based) community structure was not significantly correlated with any of the measured soil parameters. A large fraction of the 16S rRNA transcripts was assigned to nitrogen-fixing bacteria (up to 24% in June) and phototrophic organisms (up to 48% in June) illustrating the potential importance of nitrogen fixation in otherwise nitrogen poor Arctic ecosystems and of phototrophic bacterial activity on the soil surface. PMID:25983731

  20. Molecular genetics of blood-fleshed peach reveals activation of anthocyanin biosynthesis by NAC transcription factors.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Hui; Lin-Wang, Kui; Wang, Huiliang; Gu, Chao; Dare, Andrew P; Espley, Richard V; He, Huaping; Allan, Andrew C; Han, Yuepeng

    2015-04-01

    Anthocyanin pigmentation is an important consumer trait in peach (Prunus persica). In this study, the genetic basis of the blood-flesh trait was investigated using the cultivar Dahongpao, which shows high levels of cyanidin-3-glucoside in the mesocarp. Elevation of anthocyanin levels in the flesh was correlated with the expression of an R2R3 MYB transcription factor, PpMYB10.1. However, PpMYB10.1 did not co-segregate with the blood-flesh trait. The blood-flesh trait was mapped to a 200-kb interval on peach linkage group (LG) 5. Within this interval, a gene encoding a NAC domain transcription factor (TF) was found to be highly up-regulated in blood-fleshed peaches when compared with non-red-fleshed peaches. This NAC TF, designated blood (BL), acts as a heterodimer with PpNAC1 which shows high levels of expression in fruit at late developmental stages. We show that the heterodimer of BL and PpNAC1 can activate the transcription of PpMYB10.1, resulting in anthocyanin pigmentation in tobacco. Furthermore, silencing the BL gene reduces anthocyanin pigmentation in blood-fleshed peaches. The transactivation activity of the BL-PpNAC1 heterodimer is repressed by a SQUAMOSA promoter-binding protein-like TF, PpSPL1. Low levels of PpMYB10.1 expression in fruit at early developmental stages is probably attributable to lower levels of expression of PpNAC1 plus the presence of high levels of repressors such as PpSPL1. We present a mechanism whereby BL is the key gene for the blood-flesh trait in peach via its activation of PpMYB10.1 in maturing fruit. Partner TFs such as basic helix-loop-helix proteins and NAC1 are required, as is the removal of transcriptional repressors.

  1. Rapid toxicity testing based on mitochondrial respiratory activity

    SciTech Connect

    Haubenstricker, M.E. ); Holodnick, S.E.; Mancy, K.H. ); Brabec, M.J. )

    1990-05-01

    The need exists for rapid and inexpensive methods to determine the health effects of environmental contaminants on biological systems. One of the current research approaches for assessing cytotoxicity is to monitor the respiratory activity of the mitochondrion, a sensitive, nonspecific subcellular target site. Detected changes in mitochondrial function after the addition of a test chemical could be correlated to toxic effects. Mitochondrial respiration can be characterized by three indices: state 3 and state 4 respiratory rates, and the respiratory control ratio (RCR). State 4, the idle or resting state, results when coupled mitochondrial respire in a medium containing inorganic phosphate and a Kreb's cycle substrate in the absence of a phosphate acceptor such as adenosine diphosphate (ADP). In the presence of ADP the respiration rate increases to a maximum (state 3), accompanied by phosphorylation of ADP to adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The ratio of state 3 to state 4, or RCR, indicates how tightly the oxidative phosphorylation process is coupled. The synthesis of ATP by mitochondria is influenced by a number of compounds, most of which are either uncouplers or inhibitors.

  2. Effective contractile response to voltage-gated Na+ channels revealed by a channel activator.

    PubMed

    Ho, W-S Vanessa; Davis, Alison J; Chadha, Preet S; Greenwood, Iain A

    2013-04-15

    This study investigated the molecular identity and impact of enhancing voltage-gated Na(+) (Na(V)) channels in the control of vascular tone. In rat isolated mesenteric and femoral arteries mounted for isometric tension recording, the vascular actions of the Na(V) channel activator veratridine were examined. Na(V) channel expression was probed by molecular techniques and immunocytochemistry. In mesenteric arteries, veratridine induced potent contractions (pEC(50) = 5.19 ± 0.20, E(max) = 12.0 ± 2.7 mN), which were inhibited by 1 μM TTX (a blocker of all Na(V) channel isoforms, except Na(V)1.5, Na(V)1.8, and Na(V)1.9), but not by selective blockers of Na(V)1.7 (ProTx-II, 10 nM) or Na(V)1.8 (A-80347, 1 μM) channels. The responses were insensitive to endothelium removal but were partly (~60%) reduced by chemical destruction of sympathetic nerves by 6-hydroxydopamine (2 mM) or antagonism at the α1-adrenoceptor by prazosin (1 μM). KB-R7943, a blocker of the reverse mode of the Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger (3 μM), inhibited veratridine contractions in the absence or presence of prazosin. T16A(inh)-A01, a Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) channel blocker (10 μM), also inhibited the prazosin-resistant contraction to veratridine. Na(V) channel immunoreactivity was detected in freshly isolated mesenteric myocytes, with apparent colocalization with the Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger. Veratridine induced similar contractile effects in the femoral artery, and mRNA transcripts for Na(V)1.2 and Na(V)1.3 channels were evident in both vessel types. We conclude that, in addition to sympathetic nerves, NaV channels are expressed in vascular myocytes, where they are functionally coupled to the reverse mode of Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger and subsequent activation of Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) channels, causing contraction. The TTX-sensitive Na(V)1.2 and Na(V)1.3 channels are likely involved in vascular control.

  3. The asymmetry of (-)α-pinene as revealed from its raman optical activity spectrum.

    PubMed

    Wang, Peijie; Fang, Yan; Wu, Guozhen

    2013-10-01

    An algorithm is employed to retrieve the differential bond polarizabilities of the C-C bonds from the Raman optical activity (ROA) spectrum of (-)α-pinene. (-)α-pinene possesses two asymmetric centers (carbon atoms) and a local mirror symmetry. These differential bond polarizabilities show the characteristics of the asymmetry around the asymmetric carbons with respect to the mirror reflection. This analysis is accompanied along with the ROA mode signatures and the calculated β(G ')(2) and β(A)(2) which show the ROA coupling mechanisms involving the electric/magnetic dipoles and the electric dipole/quadrupole, respectively.

  4. Activation of TRPM3 by a potent synthetic ligand reveals a role in peptide release.

    PubMed

    Held, Katharina; Kichko, Tatjana; De Clercq, Katrien; Klaassen, Hugo; Van Bree, Rieta; Vanherck, Jean-Christophe; Marchand, Arnaud; Reeh, Peter W; Chaltin, Patrick; Voets, Thomas; Vriens, Joris

    2015-03-17

    Transient receptor potential (TRP) cation channel subfamily M member 3 (TRPM3), a member of the TRP channel superfamily, was recently identified as a nociceptor channel in the somatosensory system, where it is involved in the detection of noxious heat; however, owing to the lack of potent and selective agonists, little is known about other potential physiological consequences of the opening of TRPM3. Here we identify and characterize a synthetic TRPM3 activator, CIM0216, whose potency and apparent affinity greatly exceeds that of the canonical TRPM3 agonist, pregnenolone sulfate (PS). In particular, a single application of CIM0216 causes opening of both the central calcium-conducting pore and the alternative cation permeation pathway in a membrane-delimited manner. CIM0216 evoked robust calcium influx in TRPM3-expressing somatosensory neurons, and intradermal injection of the compound induced a TRPM3-dependent nocifensive behavior. Moreover, CIM0216 elicited the release of the peptides calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) from sensory nerve terminals and insulin from isolated pancreatic islets in a TRPM3-dependent manner. These experiments identify CIM0216 as a powerful tool for use in investigating the physiological roles of TRPM3, and indicate that TRPM3 activation in sensory nerve endings can contribute to neurogenic inflammation.

  5. Active chromatin domains are defined by acetylation islands revealed by genome-wide mapping.

    PubMed

    Roh, Tae-Young; Cuddapah, Suresh; Zhao, Keji

    2005-03-01

    The identity and developmental potential of a human cell is specified by its epigenome that is largely defined by patterns of chromatin modifications including histone acetylation. Here we report high-resolution genome-wide mapping of diacetylation of histone H3 at Lys 9 and Lys 14 in resting and activated human T cells by genome-wide mapping technique (GMAT). Our data show that high levels of the H3 acetylation are detected in gene-rich regions. The chromatin accessibility and gene expression of a genetic domain is correlated with hyperacetylation of promoters and other regulatory elements but not with generally elevated acetylation of the entire domain. Islands of acetylation are identified in the intergenic and transcribed regions. The locations of the 46,813 acetylation islands identified in this study are significantly correlated with conserved noncoding sequences (CNSs) and many of them are colocalized with known regulatory elements in T cells. TCR signaling induces 4045 new acetylation loci that may mediate the global chromatin remodeling and gene activation. We propose that the acetylation islands are epigenetic marks that allow prediction of functional regulatory elements.

  6. Active chromatin domains are defined by acetylation islands revealed by genome-wide mapping

    PubMed Central

    Roh, Tae-Young; Cuddapah, Suresh; Zhao, Keji

    2005-01-01

    The identity and developmental potential of a human cell is specified by its epigenome that is largely defined by patterns of chromatin modifications including histone acetylation. Here we report high-resolution genome-wide mapping of diacetylation of histone H3 at Lys 9 and Lys 14 in resting and activated human T cells by genome-wide mapping technique (GMAT). Our data show that high levels of the H3 acetylation are detected in gene-rich regions. The chromatin accessibility and gene expression of a genetic domain is correlated with hyperacetylation of promoters and other regulatory elements but not with generally elevated acetylation of the entire domain. Islands of acetylation are identified in the intergenic and transcribed regions. The locations of the 46,813 acetylation islands identified in this study are significantly correlated with conserved noncoding sequences (CNSs) and many of them are colocalized with known regulatory elements in T cells. TCR signaling induces 4045 new acetylation loci that may mediate the global chromatin remodeling and gene activation. We propose that the acetylation islands are epigenetic marks that allow prediction of functional regulatory elements. PMID:15706033

  7. Structure of protein O-mannose kinase reveals a unique active site architecture

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Qinyu; Venzke, David; Walimbe, Ameya S; Anderson, Mary E; Fu, Qiuyu; Kinch, Lisa N; Wang, Wei; Chen, Xing; Grishin, Nick V; Huang, Niu; Yu, Liping; Dixon, Jack E; Campbell, Kevin P; Xiao, Junyu

    2016-01-01

    The ‘pseudokinase’ SgK196 is a protein O-mannose kinase (POMK) that catalyzes an essential phosphorylation step during biosynthesis of the laminin-binding glycan on α-dystroglycan. However, the catalytic mechanism underlying this activity remains elusive. Here we present the crystal structure of Danio rerio POMK in complex with Mg2+ ions, ADP, aluminum fluoride, and the GalNAc-β3-GlcNAc-β4-Man trisaccharide substrate, thereby providing a snapshot of the catalytic transition state of this unusual kinase. The active site of POMK is established by residues located in non-canonical positions and is stabilized by a disulfide bridge. GalNAc-β3-GlcNAc-β4-Man is recognized by a surface groove, and the GalNAc-β3-GlcNAc moiety mediates the majority of interactions with POMK. Expression of various POMK mutants in POMK knockout cells further validated the functional requirements of critical residues. Our results provide important insights into the ability of POMK to function specifically as a glycan kinase, and highlight the structural diversity of the human kinome. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.22238.001 PMID:27879205

  8. Proteomic analysis of tylosin-resistant Mycoplasma gallisepticum reveals enzymatic activities associated with resistance.

    PubMed

    Xia, Xi; Wu, Congming; Cui, Yaowen; Kang, Mengjiao; Li, Xiaowei; Ding, Shuangyang; Shen, Jianzhong

    2015-11-20

    Mycoplasma gallisepticum is a significant pathogenic bacterium that infects poultry, causing chronic respiratory disease and sinusitis in chickens and turkeys, respectively. M. gallisepticum infection poses a substantial economic threat to the poultry industry, and this threat is made worse by the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains. The mechanisms of resistance are often difficult to determine; for example, little is known about antibiotic resistance of M. gallisepticum at the proteome level. In this study, we performed comparative proteomic analyses of an antibiotic (tylosin)-resistant M. gallisepticum mutant and a susceptible parent strain using a combination of two-dimensional differential gel electrophoresis and nano-liquid chromatography-quadrupole-time of flight mass spectrometry. Thirteen proteins were identified as differentially expressed in the resistant strain compared to the susceptible strain. Most of these proteins were related to catalytic activity, including catalysis that promotes the formylation of initiator tRNA and energy production. Elongation factors Tu and G were over-expressed in the resistant strains, and this could promote the binding of tRNA to ribosomes and catalyze ribosomal translocation, the coordinated movement of tRNA, and conformational changes in the ribosome. Taken together, our results indicate that M. gallisepticum develops resistance to tylosin by regulating associated enzymatic activities.

  9. Phyllosilicate diversity and past aqueous activity revealed at Mawrth Vallis, Mars

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bishop, J.L.; Dobrea, E.Z.N.; McKeown, N.K.; Parente, M.; Ehlmann, B.L.; Michalski, J.R.; Milliken, R.E.; Poulet, F.; Swayze, G.A.; Mustard, J.F.; Murchie, S.L.; Bibring, J.-P.

    2008-01-01

    Observations by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter/Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars in the Mawrth Vallis region show several phyllosilicate species, indicating a wide range of past aqueous activity. Iron/magnesium (Fe/Mg)-smectite is observed in light-toned outcrops that probably formed via aqueous alteration of basalt of the ancient cratered terrain. This unit is overlain by rocks rich in hydrated silica, montmorillonite, and kaolinite that may have formed via subsequent leaching of Fe and Mg through extended aqueous events or a change in aqueous chemistry. A spectral feature attributed to an Fe2+ phase is present in many locations in the Mawrth Vallis region at the transition from Fe/Mg-smectite to aluminum/silicon (Al/Si)-rich units. Fe2+-bearing materials in terrestrial sediments are typically associated with microorganisms or changes in pH or cations and could be explained here by hydrothermal activity. The stratigraphy of Fe/Mg-smectite overlain by a ferrous phase, hydrated silica, and then Al-phyllosilicates implies a complex aqueous history.

  10. Early Category-Specific Cortical Activation Revealed by Visual Stimulus Inversion

    PubMed Central

    Meeren, Hanneke K. M.; Hadjikhani, Nouchine; Ahlfors, Seppo P.; Hämäläinen, Matti S.; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2008-01-01

    Visual categorization may already start within the first 100-ms after stimulus onset, in contrast with the long-held view that during this early stage all complex stimuli are processed equally and that category-specific cortical activation occurs only at later stages. The neural basis of this proposed early stage of high-level analysis is however poorly understood. To address this question we used magnetoencephalography and anatomically-constrained distributed source modeling to monitor brain activity with millisecond-resolution while subjects performed an orientation task on the upright and upside-down presented images of three different stimulus categories: faces, houses and bodies. Significant inversion effects were found for all three stimulus categories between 70–100-ms after picture onset with a highly category-specific cortical distribution. Differential responses between upright and inverted faces were found in well-established face-selective areas of the inferior occipital cortex and right fusiform gyrus. In addition, early category-specific inversion effects were found well beyond visual areas. Our results provide the first direct evidence that category-specific processing in high-level category-sensitive cortical areas already takes place within the first 100-ms of visual processing, significantly earlier than previously thought, and suggests the existence of fast category-specific neocortical routes in the human brain. PMID:18946504

  11. Transcriptomic profiling of microglia reveals signatures of cell activation and immune response, during experimental cerebral malaria

    PubMed Central

    Capuccini, Barbara; Lin, Jingwen; Talavera-López, Carlos; Khan, Shahid M.; Sodenkamp, Jan; Spaccapelo, Roberta; Langhorne, Jean

    2016-01-01

    Cerebral malaria is a pathology involving inflammation in the brain. There are many immune cell types activated during this process, but there is little information on the response of microglia, in this severe complication. We examined microglia by genome wide transcriptomic analysis in a model of experimental cerebral malaria (ECM), in which C57BL/6 mice are infected with Plasmodium berghei ANKA. Thousands of transcripts were differentially expressed in microglia at two different time points during infection. Proliferation of microglia was a dominant feature before the onset of ECM, and supporting this, we observed an increase in numbers of these cells in the brain. When cerebral malaria symptoms were manifest, genes involved in immune responses and chemokine production were upregulated, which were possibly driven by Type I Interferon. Consistent with this hypothesis, in vitro culture of a microglial cell line with Interferon-β, but not infected red blood cells, resulted in production of several of the chemokines shown to be upregulated in the gene expression analysis. It appears that these responses are associated with ECM, as microglia from mice infected with a mutant P. berghei parasite (ΔDPAP3), which does not cause ECM, did not show the same level of activation or proliferation. PMID:27991544

  12. Deep Sequencing of Subseafloor Eukaryotic rRNA Reveals Active Fungi across Marine Subsurface Provinces

    PubMed Central

    Orsi, William; Biddle, Jennifer F.; Edgcomb, Virginia

    2013-01-01

    The deep marine subsurface is a vast habitat for microbial life where cells may live on geologic timescales. Because DNA in sediments may be preserved on long timescales, ribosomal RNA (rRNA) is suggested to be a proxy for the active fraction of a microbial community in the subsurface. During an investigation of eukaryotic 18S rRNA by amplicon pyrosequencing, unique profiles of Fungi were found across a range of marine subsurface provinces including ridge flanks, continental margins, and abyssal plains. Subseafloor fungal populations exhibit statistically significant correlations with total organic carbon (TOC), nitrate, sulfide, and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC). These correlations are supported by terminal restriction length polymorphism (TRFLP) analyses of fungal rRNA. Geochemical correlations with fungal pyrosequencing and TRFLP data from this geographically broad sample set suggests environmental selection of active Fungi in the marine subsurface. Within the same dataset, ancient rRNA signatures were recovered from plants and diatoms in marine sediments ranging from 0.03 to 2.7 million years old, suggesting that rRNA from some eukaryotic taxa may be much more stable than previously considered in the marine subsurface. PMID:23418556

  13. A validated tumorgraft model reveals activity of dovitinib against renal cell carcinoma.

    PubMed

    Sivanand, Sharanya; Peña-Llopis, Samuel; Zhao, Hong; Kucejova, Blanka; Spence, Patrick; Pavia-Jimenez, Andrea; Yamasaki, Toshinari; McBride, David J; Gillen, Jessica; Wolff, Nicholas C; Morlock, Lorraine; Lotan, Yair; Raj, Ganesh V; Sagalowsky, Arthur; Margulis, Vitaly; Cadeddu, Jeffrey A; Ross, Mark T; Bentley, David R; Kabbani, Wareef; Xie, Xian-Jin; Kapur, Payal; Williams, Noelle S; Brugarolas, James

    2012-06-06

    Most anticancer drugs entering clinical trials fail to achieve approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Drug development is hampered by the lack of preclinical models with therapeutic predictive value. Herein, we report the development and validation of a tumorgraft model of renal cell carcinoma (RCC) and its application to the evaluation of an experimental drug. Tumor samples from 94 patients were implanted in the kidneys of mice without additives or disaggregation. Tumors from 35 of these patients formed tumorgrafts, and 16 stable lines were established. Samples from metastatic sites engrafted at higher frequency than those from primary tumors, and stable engraftment of primary tumors in mice correlated with decreased patient survival. Tumorgrafts retained the histology, gene expression, DNA copy number alterations, and more than 90% of the protein-coding gene mutations of the corresponding tumors. As determined by the induction of hypercalcemia in tumorgraft-bearing mice, tumorgrafts retained the ability to induce paraneoplastic syndromes. In studies simulating drug exposures in patients, RCC tumorgraft growth was inhibited by sunitinib and sirolimus (the active metabolite of temsirolimus in humans), but not by erlotinib, which was used as a control. Dovitinib, a drug in clinical development, showed greater activity than sunitinib and sirolimus. The routine incorporation of models recapitulating the molecular genetics and drug sensitivities of human tumors into preclinical programs has the potential to improve oncology drug development.

  14. Nerve Growth Factor Promoter Activity Revealed in Mice Expressing Enhanced Green Fluorescent Protein

    PubMed Central

    Kawaja, Michael D.; Smithson, Laura J.; Elliott, Janet; Trinh, Gina; Crotty, Anne-Marie; Michalski, Bernadeta; Fahnestock, Margaret

    2012-01-01

    Nerve growth factor (NGF) and its precursor proNGF are perhaps the best described growth factors of the mammalian nervous system. There remains, however, a paucity of information regarding the precise cellular sites of proNGF/NGF synthesis. Here we report the generation of transgenic mice in which the NGF promoter controls the ectopic synthesis of enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP). These transgenic mice provide an unprecedented resolution of both neural cells (e.g., neocortical and hippocampal neurons) and non-neural cells (e.g., renal interstitial cells and thymic reticular cells) that display NGF promoter activity from postnatal development to adulthood. Moreover, the transgene is inducible by injury. At 2 days after sciatic nerve ligation, a robust population of EGFP-positive cells is seen in the proximal nerve stump. These transgenic mice offer novel insights into the cellular sites of NGF promoter activity and can be used as models for investigating the regulation of proNGF/NGF expression after injury. PMID:21456011

  15. A uniform human Wnt expression library reveals a shared secretory pathway and unique signaling activities.

    PubMed

    Najdi, Rani; Proffitt, Kyle; Sprowl, Stephanie; Kaur, Simran; Yu, Jia; Covey, Tracy M; Virshup, David M; Waterman, Marian L

    2012-09-01

    Wnt ligands are secreted morphogens that control multiple developmental processes during embryogenesis and adult homeostasis. A diverse set of receptors and signals have been linked to individual Wnts, but the lack of tools for comparative analysis has limited the ability to determine which of these signals are general for the entire Wnt family, and which define subsets of differently acting ligands. We have created a versatile Gateway library of clones for all 19 human Wnts. An analysis comparing epitope-tagged and untagged versions of each ligand shows that despite their similar expression at the mRNA level, Wnts exhibit considerable variation in stability, processing and secretion. At least 14 out of the 19 Wnts activate β-catenin-dependent signaling, an activity that is cell type-dependent and tracks with the stabilization of β-catenin and LRP6 phosphorylation. We find that the core Wnt modification and secretion proteins Porcupine (PORCN) and Wntless (WLS) are essential for all Wnts to signal through β-catenin-dependent and independent pathways. This comprehensive toolkit provides critical tools and new insights into human Wnt gene expression and function.

  16. Characterization of 10-Hydroxygeraniol Dehydrogenase from Catharanthus roseus Reveals Cascaded Enzymatic Activity in Iridoid Biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Krithika, Ramakrishnan; Srivastava, Prabhakar Lal; Rani, Bajaj; Kolet, Swati P.; Chopade, Manojkumar; Soniya, Mantri; Thulasiram, Hirekodathakallu V.

    2015-01-01

    Catharanthus roseus [L.] is a major source of the monoterpene indole alkaloids (MIAs), which are of significant interest due to their therapeutic value. These molecules are formed through an intermediate, cis-trans-nepetalactol, a cyclized product of 10-oxogeranial. One of the key enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of MIAs is an NAD(P)+ dependent oxidoreductase system, 10-hydroxygeraniol dehydrogenase (Cr10HGO), which catalyses the formation of 10-oxogeranial from 10-hydroxygeraniol via 10-oxogeraniol or 10-hydroxygeranial. This work describes the cloning and functional characterization of Cr10HGO from C. roseus and its role in the iridoid biosynthesis. Substrate specificity studies indicated that, Cr10HGO has good activity on substrates such as 10-hydroxygeraniol, 10-oxogeraniol or 10-hydroxygeranial over monohydroxy linear terpene derivatives. Further it was observed that incubation of 10-hydroxygeraniol with Cr10HGO and iridoid synthase (CrIDS) in the presence of NADP+ yielded a major metabolite, which was characterized as (1R, 4aS, 7S, 7aR)-nepetalactol by comparing its retention time, mass fragmentation pattern, and co-injection studies with that of the synthesized compound. These results indicate that there is concerted activity of Cr10HGO with iridoid synthase in the formation of (1R, 4aS, 7S, 7aR)-nepetalactol, an important intermediate in iridoid biosynthesis. PMID:25651761

  17. Phyllosilicate diversity and past aqueous activity revealed at Mawrth Vallis, Mars.

    PubMed

    Bishop, Janice L; Dobrea, Eldar Z Noe; McKeown, Nancy K; Parente, Mario; Ehlmann, Bethany L; Michalski, Joseph R; Milliken, Ralph E; Poulet, Francois; Swayze, Gregg A; Mustard, John F; Murchie, Scott L; Bibring, Jean-Pierre

    2008-08-08

    Observations by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter/Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars in the Mawrth Vallis region show several phyllosilicate species, indicating a wide range of past aqueous activity. Iron/magnesium (Fe/Mg)-smectite is observed in light-toned outcrops that probably formed via aqueous alteration of basalt of the ancient cratered terrain. This unit is overlain by rocks rich in hydrated silica, montmorillonite, and kaolinite that may have formed via subsequent leaching of Fe and Mg through extended aqueous events or a change in aqueous chemistry. A spectral feature attributed to an Fe2+ phase is present in many locations in the Mawrth Vallis region at the transition from Fe/Mg-smectite to aluminum/silicon (Al/Si)-rich units. Fe2+-bearing materials in terrestrial sediments are typically associated with microorganisms or changes in pH or cations and could be explained here by hydrothermal activity. The stratigraphy of Fe/Mg-smectite overlain by a ferrous phase, hydrated silica, and then Al-phyllosilicates implies a complex aqueous history.

  18. Altered spontaneous activity in antisocial personality disorder revealed by regional homogeneity.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yan; Liu, Wangyong; Chen, Jingang; Liao, Jian; Hu, Dewen; Wang, Wei

    2013-08-07

    There is increasing evidence that antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) stems from brain abnormalities. However, there are only a few studies investigating brain structure in ASPD. The aim of this study was to find regional coherence abnormalities in resting-state functional MRI of ASPD. Thirty-two ASPD individuals and 34 controls underwent a resting-state functional MRI scan. The regional homogeneity (ReHo) approach was used to examine whether ASPD was related to alterations in resting-state neural activity. Support vector machine discriminant analysis was used to evaluate the sensitivity/specificity characteristics of the ReHo index in discriminating between the ASPD individuals and controls. The results showed that, compared with controls, ASPD individuals show lower ReHo in the right cerebellum posterior lobe (Crus1) and the right middle frontal gyrus, as well as higher ReHo in the right middle occipital gyrus (BA 19), left inferior temporal gyrus (BA 37), and right inferior occipital gyrus (cuneus, BA 18). All alternation regions reported a predictive accuracy above 70%. To our knowledge, this study was the first to study the change in regional activity coherence in the resting brain of ASPD individuals. These results not only elucidated the pathological mechanism of ASPD from a resting-state functional viewpoint but also showed that these alterations in ReHo may serve as potential markers for the detection of ASPD.

  19. X-ray structure of human aromatase reveals an androgen-specific active site.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Debashis; Griswold, Jennifer; Erman, Mary; Pangborn, Walter

    2010-02-28

    Aromatase is a unique cytochrome P450 that catalyzes the removal of the 19-methyl group and aromatization of the A-ring of androgens for the synthesis of estrogens. All human estrogens are synthesized via this enzymatic aromatization pathway. Aromatase inhibitors thus constitute a frontline therapy for estrogen-dependent breast cancer. Despite decades of intense investigation, this enzyme of the endoplasmic reticulum membrane has eluded all structure determination efforts. We have determined the crystal structure of the highly active aromatase purified from human placenta, in complex with its natural substrate androstenedione. The structure shows the binding mode of androstenedione in the catalytically active oxidized high-spin ferric state of the enzyme. Hydrogen bond-forming interactions and tight packing hydrophobic side chains that complement the puckering of the steroid backbone provide the molecular basis for the exclusive androgenic specificity of aromatase. Locations of catalytic residues and water molecules shed new light on the mechanism of the aromatization step. The structure also suggests a membrane integration model indicative of the passage of steroids through the lipid bilayer.

  20. Time, space and emotion: fMRI reveals content-specific activation during text comprehension.

    PubMed

    Ferstl, Evelyn C; von Cramon, D Yves

    2007-11-12

    Story comprehension involves building a situation model of the text, i.e., a representation containing information on the who, where, when and why of the story. Using fMRI at 3T, domain-specific activations for three different information aspects were sought. Twenty participants read two sentence stories half of which contained inconsistencies concerning emotional, temporal or spatial information. Partly replicating previous results [E.C. Ferstl, M. Rinck, D.Y. von Cramon, Emotional and temporal aspects of situation model processing during text comprehension: an event-related fMRI study, J. Cogn. Neurosci. 17 (2005) 724-739], the anterior lateral prefrontal cortex/orbito-frontal cortex proved important for processing temporal information. The left anterior temporal lobe was particularly important during emotional stories. Most importantly, spatial information elicited bilateral activation in the collateral sulci and the posterior cingulate cortex, areas important for visuo-spatial cognition. These findings provide further evidence for content-specific processes during text comprehension.

  1. Deep sequencing of subseafloor eukaryotic rRNA reveals active Fungi across marine subsurface provinces.

    PubMed

    Orsi, William; Biddle, Jennifer F; Edgcomb, Virginia

    2013-01-01

    The deep marine subsurface is a vast habitat for microbial life where cells may live on geologic timescales. Because DNA in sediments may be preserved on long timescales, ribosomal RNA (rRNA) is suggested to be a proxy for the active fraction of a microbial community in the subsurface. During an investigation of eukaryotic 18S rRNA by amplicon pyrosequencing, unique profiles of Fungi were found across a range of marine subsurface provinces including ridge flanks, continental margins, and abyssal plains. Subseafloor fungal populations exhibit statistically significant correlations with total organic carbon (TOC), nitrate, sulfide, and dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC). These correlations are supported by terminal restriction length polymorphism (TRFLP) analyses of fungal rRNA. Geochemical correlations with fungal pyrosequencing and TRFLP data from this geographically broad sample set suggests environmental selection of active Fungi in the marine subsurface. Within the same dataset, ancient rRNA signatures were recovered from plants and diatoms in marine sediments ranging from 0.03 to 2.7 million years old, suggesting that rRNA from some eukaryotic taxa may be much more stable than previously considered in the marine subsurface.

  2. Structure-guided mutagenesis reveals a hierarchical mechanism of Parkin activation

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Matthew Y.; Vranas, Marta; Krahn, Andrea I.; Pundlik, Shayal; Trempe, Jean- François; Fon, Edward A.

    2017-01-01

    Parkin and PINK1 function in a common pathway to clear damaged mitochondria. Parkin exists in an auto-inhibited conformation stabilized by multiple interdomain interactions. The binding of PINK1-generated phospho-ubiquitin and the phosphorylation of the ubiquitin-like (Ubl) domain of Parkin at Ser65 release its auto-inhibition, but how and when these events take place in cells remain to be defined. Here we show that mutations that we designed to activate Parkin by releasing the Repressor Element of Parkin (REP) domain, or by disrupting the interface between the RING0:RING2 domains, can completely rescue mutations in the Parkin Ubl that are defective in mitochondrial autophagy. Using a FRET reporter assay we show that Parkin undergoes a conformational change upon phosphorylation that can be mimicked by mutating Trp403 in the REP. We propose a hierarchical model whereby pUb binding on mitochondria enables Parkin phosphorylation, which, in turn, leads to REP removal, E3 ligase activation and mitophagy. PMID:28276439

  3. Proteomic analysis of tylosin-resistant Mycoplasma gallisepticum reveals enzymatic activities associated with resistance

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Xi; Wu, Congming; Cui, Yaowen; Kang, Mengjiao; Li, Xiaowei; Ding, Shuangyang; Shen, Jianzhong

    2015-01-01

    Mycoplasma gallisepticum is a significant pathogenic bacterium that infects poultry, causing chronic respiratory disease and sinusitis in chickens and turkeys, respectively. M. gallisepticum infection poses a substantial economic threat to the poultry industry, and this threat is made worse by the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains. The mechanisms of resistance are often difficult to determine; for example, little is known about antibiotic resistance of M. gallisepticum at the proteome level. In this study, we performed comparative proteomic analyses of an antibiotic (tylosin)-resistant M. gallisepticum mutant and a susceptible parent strain using a combination of two-dimensional differential gel electrophoresis and nano-liquid chromatography-quadrupole-time of flight mass spectrometry. Thirteen proteins were identified as differentially expressed in the resistant strain compared to the susceptible strain. Most of these proteins were related to catalytic activity, including catalysis that promotes the formylation of initiator tRNA and energy production. Elongation factors Tu and G were over-expressed in the resistant strains, and this could promote the binding of tRNA to ribosomes and catalyze ribosomal translocation, the coordinated movement of tRNA, and conformational changes in the ribosome. Taken together, our results indicate that M. gallisepticum develops resistance to tylosin by regulating associated enzymatic activities. PMID:26584633

  4. Transcriptomic profiling of microglia reveals signatures of cell activation and immune response, during experimental cerebral malaria.

    PubMed

    Capuccini, Barbara; Lin, Jingwen; Talavera-López, Carlos; Khan, Shahid M; Sodenkamp, Jan; Spaccapelo, Roberta; Langhorne, Jean

    2016-12-19

    Cerebral malaria is a pathology involving inflammation in the brain. There are many immune cell types activated during this process, but there is little information on the response of microglia, in this severe complication. We examined microglia by genome wide transcriptomic analysis in a model of experimental cerebral malaria (ECM), in which C57BL/6 mice are infected with Plasmodium berghei ANKA. Thousands of transcripts were differentially expressed in microglia at two different time points during infection. Proliferation of microglia was a dominant feature before the onset of ECM, and supporting this, we observed an increase in numbers of these cells in the brain. When cerebral malaria symptoms were manifest, genes involved in immune responses and chemokine production were upregulated, which were possibly driven by Type I Interferon. Consistent with this hypothesis, in vitro culture of a microglial cell line with Interferon-β, but not infected red blood cells, resulted in production of several of the chemokines shown to be upregulated in the gene expression analysis. It appears that these responses are associated with ECM, as microglia from mice infected with a mutant P. berghei parasite (ΔDPAP3), which does not cause ECM, did not show the same level of activation or proliferation.

  5. Diversity of Orientia tsutsugamushi clinical isolates in Cambodia reveals active selection and recombination process.

    PubMed

    Duong, Veasna; Blassdell, Kim; May, Thinh Thi Xuan; Sreyrath, Lay; Gavotte, Laurent; Morand, Serge; Frutos, Roger; Buchy, Philippe

    2013-04-01

    Orientia tsutsugamushi, the causative agent of scrub typhus in South East Asia and Pacific, is an obligate intracellular bacterium closely related to the Rickettsia. The pathogen is transmitted to humans through the bites of infected larvae of trombiculid mites of the genus Leptotrombidium in which is maintained trough vertical transmission mechanism. The infection in rodents has been described in over 20 species. Scrub typhus is commonly confused with other tropical fevers and late diagnosis and treatment can lead to severe organ failures and a strain-dependent mortality rate of up to 50%. A MLST scheme associating seven core function genes: adk, lepB, lipA, lipB, secY, sodB and sucA was developed and validated on seven Cambodian strains detected in patients and two complete reference genomes from Korea and Japan. Sequence data were analyzed both with respect to sequence type (ST) diversity and DNA polymorphism. Differing trends were revealed. DNA polymorphism and phylogeny of individual gene loci indicated a significant level of recombination and genetic diversity. However, the ST distribution is clearly clonal and the clinical situation can be summarized by the formula: one patient, one strain, one ST. This contradiction is only apparent and is most likely the consequence of the unique life cycle of O. tsutsugamushi. The quasi exclusive vertical transmission mode in mites generates repeated bottlenecks and small-size populations and strongly limits genetic diversity. O. tsutsugamushi has developed specific mechanisms for generating genetic diversity which include recombination, duplication and conjugation. Recombination and other mechanisms for increasing genetic diversity are likely to occur in rodents which can act as maintenance hosts, although occurrence in mites cannot be excluded. Consequences for the epidemiology of scrub typhus are discussed.

  6. Spatio-Temporal Cellular Dynamics of the Arabidopsis Flagellin Receptor Reveal Activation Status-Dependent Endosomal Sorting[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Beck, Martina; Zhou, Ji; Faulkner, Christine; MacLean, Daniel; Robatzek, Silke

    2012-01-01

    The activity of surface receptors is location specific, dependent upon the dynamic membrane trafficking network and receptor-mediated endocytosis (RME). Therefore, the spatio-temporal dynamics of RME are critical to receptor function. The plasma membrane receptor FLAGELLIN SENSING2 (FLS2) confers immunity against bacterial infection through perception of flagellin (flg22). Following elicitation, FLS2 is internalized into vesicles. To resolve FLS2 trafficking, we exploited quantitative confocal imaging for colocalization studies and chemical interference. FLS2 localizes to bona fide endosomes via two distinct endocytic trafficking routes depending on its activation status. FLS2 receptors constitutively recycle in a Brefeldin A (BFA)–sensitive manner, while flg22-activated receptors traffic via ARA7/Rab F2b– and ARA6/Rab F1–positive endosomes insensitive to BFA. FLS2 endocytosis required a functional Rab5 GTPase pathway as revealed by dominant-negative ARA7/Rab F2b. Flg22-induced FLS2 endosomal numbers were increased by Concanamycin A treatment but reduced by Wortmannin, indicating that activated FLS2 receptors are targeted to late endosomes. RME inhibitors Tyrphostin A23 and Endosidin 1 altered but did not block induced FLS2 endocytosis. Additional inhibitor studies imply the involvement of the actin-myosin system in FLS2 internalization and trafficking. Altogether, we report a dynamic pattern of subcellular trafficking for FLS2 and reveal a defined framework for ligand-dependent endocytosis of this receptor. PMID:23085733

  7. Structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin reveals a putative mechanism of conformational activation for protease entrapment

    SciTech Connect

    Fyfe, Cameron D.; Grinter, Rhys; Josts, Inokentijs; Mosbahi, Khedidja; Roszak, Aleksander W.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Wall, Daniel M.; Burchmore, Richard J. S.; Byron, Olwyn; Walker, Daniel

    2015-06-30

    The X-ray structure of protease-cleaved E. coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. Bacterial α-2-macroglobulins have been suggested to function in defence as broad-spectrum inhibitors of host proteases that breach the outer membrane. Here, the X-ray structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. In this competitive mechanism, protease cleavage of the bait-region domain results in the untethering of an intrinsically disordered region of this domain which disrupts native interdomain interactions that maintain E. coli α-2-macroglobulin in the inactivated form. The resulting global conformational change results in entrapment of the protease and activation of the thioester bond that covalently links to the attacking protease. Owing to the similarity in structure and domain architecture of Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin and human α-2-macroglobulin, this protease-activation mechanism is likely to operate across the diverse members of this group.

  8. LOW ACTIVITY WASTE FEED SOLIDS CARACTERIZATION AND FILTERABILITY TESTS

    SciTech Connect

    McCabe, D.; Crawford, C.; Duignan, M.; Williams, M.; Burket, P.

    2014-04-03

    The primary treatment of the tank waste at the DOE Hanford site will be done in the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP) that is currently under construction. The baseline plan for the WTP Pretreatment facility is to treat the waste, splitting it into High Level Waste (HLW) feed and Low Activity Waste (LAW) feed. Both waste streams are then separately vitrified as glass and sealed in canisters. The LAW glass will be disposed onsite in the Integrated Disposal Facility (IDF). There are currently no plans to treat the waste to remove technetium in the WTP Pretreatment facility, so its disposition path is the LAW glass. Options are being explored to immobilize the LAW portion of the tank waste, i.e., the LAW feed from the WTP Pretreatment facility. Removal of {sup 99}Tc from the LAW Feed, followed by off-site disposal of the {sup 99}Tc, would eliminate a key risk contributor for the IDF Performance Assessment (PA) for supplemental waste forms, and has potential to reduce treatment and disposal costs. Washington River Protection Solutions (WRPS) is developing some conceptual flow sheets for LAW treatment and disposal that could benefit from technetium removal. One of these flowsheets will specifically examine removing {sup 99}Tc from the LAW feed stream to supplemental immobilization. The conceptual flow sheet of the {sup 99}Tc removal process includes a filter to remove insoluble solids prior to processing the stream in an ion exchange column, but the characteristics and behavior of the liquid and solid phases has not previously been investigated. This report contains results of testing of a simulant that represents the projected composition of the feed to the Supplemental LAW process. This feed composition is not identical to the aqueous tank waste fed to the Waste Treatment Plant because it has been processed through WTP Pretreatment facility and therefore contains internal changes and recycle streams that will be generated within the WTP process. Although

  9. Tectonic activity revealed by morphostructural analysis: Development of the Sierra de la Candelaria range, northwestern Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barcelona, H.; Peri, G.; Tobal, J.; Sagripanti, L.; Favetto, A.

    2014-12-01

    The tectonically active broken foreland of NW Argentina is a recent analog of the eastern margin of the Puna plateau during Mio-Pliocene times and likely of other broken forelands worldwide. In order to evaluate active tectonism in the broken foreland of the NW Argentine Andes, we examined the complex geomorphology in the vicinity of the basement-cored Sierra de la Candelaria range at ˜26°S and deciphered multiple episodes of crustal deformation spanning the Pliocene to the Quaternary. Digital elevation models, satellite images and geological data within a GIS environment allowed us to analyze the terrain, drainage networks, river dynamics and structure, as well as to obtain detailed geomorphological mapping, active tectonic indices, longitudinal river profiles and structural sections. Three morphostructural segments were defined based on the structural features, the differential vertical dissection pattern over the basement, the faulted Pliocene to recent deposits, the stepwise propagation of anticlines and the distortion over the fluvial system. By combining the several lines of evidence, we concluded that the Sierra de la Candelaria range was subjected to a multi-stage development. The first stage uplifted the central segment concomitant with the formation of the surrounding ranges and with the main partition phase of the foreland. After a significant time lapse, the mountain range was subjected to southward thick-skinned growth and northward growth via stepwise thin-skinned deformation and exerted control over the dynamics of the Río Rosario. Taking into account the surrounding basins and ranges of the Sierra de la Candelaria, the southern Santa Bárbara System is characterized by partially isolated intramontane basins (Choromoro and Rosario) limited by shielded ranges that caused moisture block and shows continuous deformation. These features were related to early stages of a broken foreland evolution model and modern analogs were found at the northern

  10. In Vivo Activation of Azipropofol Prolongs Anesthesia and Reveals Synaptic Targets*

    PubMed Central

    Weiser, Brian P.; Kelz, Max B.; Eckenhoff, Roderic G.

    2013-01-01

    General anesthetic photolabels have been instrumental in discovering and confirming protein binding partners and binding sites of these promiscuous ligands. We report the in vivo photoactivation of meta-azipropofol, a potent analog of propofol, in Xenopus laevis tadpoles. Covalent adduction of meta-azipropofol in vivo prolongs the primary pharmacologic effect of general anesthetics in a behavioral phenotype we termed “optoanesthesia.” Coupling this behavior with a tritiated probe, we performed unbiased, time-resolved gel proteomics to identify neuronal targets of meta-azipropofol in vivo. We have identified synaptic binding partners, such as synaptosomal-associated protein 25, as well as voltage-dependent anion channels as potential facilitators of the general anesthetic state. Pairing behavioral phenotypes elicited by the activation of efficacious photolabels in vivo with time-resolved proteomics provides a novel approach to investigate molecular mechanisms of general anesthetics. PMID:23184948

  11. Unmasking the ancestral activity of integron integrases reveals a smooth evolutionary transition during functional innovation

    PubMed Central

    Escudero, Jose Antonio; Loot, Celine; Parissi, Vincent; Nivina, Aleksandra; Bouchier, Christiane; Mazel, Didier

    2016-01-01

    Tyrosine (Y)-recombinases have evolved to deliver mechanistically different reactions on a variety of substrates, but these evolutionary transitions are poorly understood. Among them, integron integrases are hybrid systems recombining single- and double-stranded DNA partners. These reactions are asymmetric and need a replicative resolution pathway, an exception to the canonical second strand exchange model of Y-recombinases. Integron integrases possess a specific domain for this specialized pathway. Here we show that despite this, integrases are still capable of efficiently operating the ancestral second strand exchange in symmetrical reactions between double-stranded substrates. During these reactions, both strands are reactive and Holliday junction resolution can follow either pathway. A novel deep-sequencing approach allows mapping of the crossover point for the second strand exchange. The persistence of the ancestral activity in integrases illustrates their robustness and shows that innovation towards new recombination substrates and resolution pathways was a smooth evolutionary process. PMID:26961432

  12. Transcription activator structure reveals redox control of a replication initiation reaction†

    PubMed Central

    Sanders, Cyril M.; Sizov, Dmytro; Seavers, Philippa R.; Ortiz-Lombardía, Miguel; Antson, Alfred A.

    2007-01-01

    Redox changes are one of the factors that influence cell-cycle progression and that control the processes of cellular proliferation, differentiation, senescence and apoptosis. Proteins regulated through redox-sensitive cysteines have been characterized but specific ‘sulphydryl switches’ in replication proteins remain to be identified. In bovine papillomavirus type-1, DNA replication begins when the viral transcription factor E2 recruits the viral initiator protein E1 to the origin of DNA replication (ori). Here we show that a novel dimerization interface in the E2 transcription activation domain is stabilized by a disulphide bond. Oxidative cross-linking via Cys57 sequesters the interaction surface between E1 and E2, preventing pre-initiation and replication initiation complex formation. Our data demonstrate that as well as a mechanism for regulating DNA binding, redox reactions can control replication by modulating the tertiary structure of critical protein factors using a specific redox sensor. PMID:17478495

  13. Impedance spectroscopy of micro-Droplets reveals activation of Bacterial Mechanosensitive Channels in Hypotonic Solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ebrahimi, Aida; Alam, Muhammad A.

    Rapid detection of bacterial pathogens is of great importance in healthcare, food safety, environmental monitoring, and homeland security. Most bacterial detection platforms rely on binary fission (i.e. cell growth) to reach a threshold cell population that can be resolved by the sensing method. Since cell division depends on the bacteria type, the detection time of such methods can vary from hours to days. In contrast, in this work, we show that bacteria cells can be detected within minutes by relying on activation of specific protein channels, i.e. mechanosensitive channels (MS channels). When cells are exposed to hypotonic solutions, MS channels allow efflux of solutes to the external solution which leads to release the excessive membrane tension. Release of the cytoplasmic solutes, in turn, results in increase of the electrical conductance measured by droplet-based impedance sensing. The approach can be an effective technique for fast, pre-screening of bacterial contamination at ultra-low concentration.

  14. Cannabinoid CB2 receptor ligand profiling reveals biased signalling and off-target activity

    PubMed Central

    Soethoudt, Marjolein; Grether, Uwe; Fingerle, Jürgen; Grim, Travis W.; Fezza, Filomena; de Petrocellis, Luciano; Ullmer, Christoph; Rothenhäusler, Benno; Perret, Camille; van Gils, Noortje; Finlay, David; MacDonald, Christa; Chicca, Andrea; Gens, Marianela Dalghi; Stuart, Jordyn; de Vries, Henk; Mastrangelo, Nicolina; Xia, Lizi; Alachouzos, Georgios; Baggelaar, Marc P.; Martella, Andrea; Mock, Elliot D.; Deng, Hui; Heitman, Laura H.; Connor, Mark; Di Marzo, Vincenzo; Gertsch, Jürg; Lichtman, Aron H.; Maccarrone, Mauro; Pacher, Pal; Glass, Michelle; van der Stelt, Mario

    2017-01-01

    The cannabinoid CB2 receptor (CB2R) represents a promising therapeutic target for various forms of tissue injury and inflammatory diseases. Although numerous compounds have been developed and widely used to target CB2R, their selectivity, molecular mode of action and pharmacokinetic properties have been poorly characterized. Here we report the most extensive characterization of the molecular pharmacology of the most widely used CB2R ligands to date. In a collaborative effort between multiple academic and industry laboratories, we identify marked differences in the ability of certain agonists to activate distinct signalling pathways and to cause off-target effects. We reach a consensus that HU910, HU308 and JWH133 are the recommended selective CB2R agonists to study the role of CB2R in biological and disease processes. We believe that our unique approach would be highly suitable for the characterization of other therapeutic targets in drug discovery research. PMID:28045021

  15. Expression and activity analysis reveal that heme oxygenase (decycling) 1 is associated with blue egg formation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Z P; Liu, R F; Wang, A R; Li, J Y; Deng, X M

    2011-04-01

    Biliverdin is responsible for the coloration of blue eggs and is secreted onto the eggshell by the shell gland. Previous studies confirmed that a significant difference exists in biliverdin content between blue eggs and brown eggs, although the reasons are still unknown. Because the pigment is derived from oxidative degradation of heme catalyzed by heme oxygenase (HO), this study compared heme oxygenase (decycling) 1 (HMOX1), the gene encoding HO expression and HO activity, in the shell glands of the Dongxiang blue-shelled chicken (n = 12) and the Dongxiang brown-shelled chicken (n = 12). Results showed that HMOX1 was highly expressed at the mRNA (1.58-fold; P < 0.05) and protein levels in blue-shelled chickens compared with brown-shelled chickens. At the functional level, blue-shelled chickens also showed 1.40-fold (P < 0.05) higher HO activity than brown-shelled chickens. To explore the reasons for the differential expression of HMOX1, an association study of 6 SNP capturing the majority of HMOX1 variants with the blue egg coloration was performed. Results showed no significant association between SNP and the blue egg coloration in HMOX1 (P > 0.05). Taken together, these results show that blue egg formation is associated with high expression of HMOX1 in the shell gland of Dongxiang blue-shelled chickens, and suggest that differential expression of HMOX1 in the 2 groups of chickens is most likely to arise from an alteration in the trans-acting factor.

  16. Metaproteogenomics reveals the soil microbial communities active in nutrient cycling processes under different tree species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keiblinger, Katharina Maria; Masse, Jacynthe; Zühlke, Daniela; Riedel, Katharina; Zechmeister-Boltenstern, Sophie; Prescott, Cindy E.; Grayston, Sue

    2016-04-01

    Tree species exert strong effects on microbial communities in litter and soil and may alter rates of soil processes fundamental to nutrient cycling and carbon fluxes (Prescott and Grayston 2013). However, the influence of tree species on decomposition processes are still contradictory and poorly understood. An understanding of the mechanisms underlying plant influences on soil processes is important for our ability to predict ecosystem response to altered global/environmental conditions. In order to link microbial community structure and function to forest-floor nutrient cycling processes, we sampled forest floors under western redcedar (Thuja plicata), Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) and Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis) grown in nutrient-poor sites in common garden experiments on Vancouver island (Canada). We measured forest-floor total N, total C, initial NH4+ and NO3- concentrations, DOC, Cmic and Nmic. Gross rates of ammonification and NH4+ consumption were measured using the 15N pool-dilution method. Organic carbon quality was assessed through FTIR analyses. Microbial community structure was analysed by a metaproteogenomic approach using 16S and ITS amplification and sequencing with MiSeq platform. Proteins were extracted and peptides characterized via LC-MS/MS on a Velos Orbitrap to assess the active microbial community. Different microbial communities were active under the three tree species and variation in process rates were observed and will be discussed. This research provides new insights on microbial processes during organic matter decomposition. The metaproteogenomic approach enables us to investigate these changes with respect to possible effects on soil C-storage at even finer taxonomic resolution.

  17. RNA-Seq Reveals Activation of Both Common and Cytokine-Specific Pathways following Neutrophil Priming

    PubMed Central

    Moots, Robert J.; Edwards, Steven W.

    2013-01-01

    Neutrophils are central to the pathology of inflammatory diseases, where they can damage host tissue through release of reactive oxygen metabolites and proteases, and drive inflammation via secretion of cytokines and chemokines. Many cytokines, such as those generated during inflammation, can induce a similar “primed” phenotype in neutrophils, but it is unknown if different cytokines utilise common or cytokine-specific pathways to induce these functional changes. Here, we describe the transcriptomic changes induced in control human neutrophils during priming in vitro with pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α and GM-CSF) using RNA-seq. Priming led to the rapid expression of a common set of transcripts for cytokines, chemokines and cell surface receptors (CXCL1, CXCL2, IL1A, IL1B, IL1RA, ICAM1). However, 580 genes were differentially regulated by TNF-α and GM-CSF treatment, and of these 58 were directly implicated in the control of apoptosis. While these two cytokines both delayed apoptosis, they induced changes in expression of different pro- and anti-apoptotic genes. Bioinformatics analysis predicted that these genes were regulated via differential activation of transcription factors by TNF-α and GM-CSF and these predictions were confirmed using functional assays: inhibition of NF-κB signalling abrogated the protective effect of TNF-α (but not that of GM-CSF) on neutrophil apoptosis, whereas inhibition of JAK/STAT signalling abrogated the anti-apoptotic effect of GM-CSF, but not that of TNF-α (p<0.05). These data provide the first characterisation of the human neutrophil transcriptome following GM-CSF and TNF-α priming, and demonstrate the utility of this approach to define functional changes in neutrophils following cytokine exposure. This may provide an important, new approach to define the molecular properties of neutrophils after in vivo activation during inflammation. PMID:23554905

  18. Climate impacts on human settlement and agricultural activities in northern Norway revealed through sediment biogeochemistry.

    PubMed

    D'Anjou, Robert M; Bradley, Raymond S; Balascio, Nicholas L; Finkelstein, David B

    2012-12-11

    Disentangling the effects of climate change and anthropogenic activities on the environment is a major challenge in paleoenvironmental research. Here, we used fecal sterols and other biogeochemical compounds in lake sediments from northern Norway to identify both natural and anthropogenic signals of environmental change during the late Holocene. The area was first occupied by humans and their grazing animals at ∼2,250 ± 75 calendar years before 1950 AD (calendar years before present). The arrival of humans is indicated by an abrupt increase in coprostanol (and its epimer epicoprostanol) in the sediments and an associated increase in 5β-stigmastanol (and 5β-epistigmastanol), which resulted from human and animal feces washing into the lake. Human settlement was accompanied by an abrupt increase in landscape fires (indicated by the rise in pyrolytic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) and a decline in woodland (registered by a change in n-alkane chain lengths from leaf waxes), accelerating a process that began earlier in the Holocene. Human activity and associated landscape changes in the region over the last two millennia were mainly driven by summer temperatures, as indicated by independent tree-ring reconstructions, although there were periods when socioeconomic factors played an equally important role. In this study, fecal sterols in lake sediments have been used to provide a record of human occupancy through time. This approach may be useful in many archeological studies, both to confirm the presence of humans and grazing animals, and to distinguish between anthropogenic and natural factors that have influenced the environment in the past.

  19. Genotoxicity testing of the herbicide Roundup and its active ingredient glyphosate isopropylamine using the mouse bone marrow micronucleus test, Salmonella mutagenicity test, and Allium anaphase-telophase test.

    PubMed

    Rank, J; Jensen, A G; Skov, B; Pedersen, L H; Jensen, K

    1993-06-01

    The genotoxic potential of the herbicide Roundup and its active agent, glyphosate isopropylamine salt, was studied in three different assays. No clastogenic effects were found in the mouse bone marrow micronucleus test for either of the two agents. In the Salmonella assay only Roundup was tested. It showed a weak mutagenic effect for the concentrations 360 micrograms/plate in TA98 (without S9) and 720 micrograms/plate in TA100 (with S9). These concentrations are close to the toxic level. The anaphase-telophase Allium test showed no effect for the glyphosate isopropylamine salt, but a significant increase in chromosome aberrations appeared after treatment with Roundup at concentrations of 1.44 and 2.88 mg/l when calculated as glyphosate isopropylamine. The most frequent aberrations observed could be characterized as disturbances of the spindle.

  20. Structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin reveals a putative mechanism of conformational activation for protease entrapment

    PubMed Central

    Fyfe, Cameron D.; Grinter, Rhys; Josts, Inokentijs; Mosbahi, Khedidja; Roszak, Aleksander W.; Cogdell, Richard J.; Wall, Daniel M.; Burchmore, Richard J. S.; Byron, Olwyn; Walker, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial α-2-macroglobulins have been suggested to function in defence as broad-spectrum inhibitors of host proteases that breach the outer membrane. Here, the X-ray structure of protease-cleaved Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin is described, which reveals a putative mechanism of activation and conformational change essential for protease inhibition. In this competitive mechanism, protease cleavage of the bait-region domain results in the untethering of an intrinsically disordered region of this domain which disrupts native interdomain interactions that maintain E. coli α-2-macroglobulin in the inactivated form. The resulting global conformational change results in entrapment of the protease and activation of the thioester bond that covalently links to the attacking protease. Owing to the similarity in structure and domain architecture of Escherichia coli α-2-macroglobulin and human α-2-macro­globulin, this protease-activation mechanism is likely to operate across the diverse members of this group. PMID:26143919

  1. Simultaneous PET-MRI reveals brain function in activated and resting state on metabolic, hemodynamic and multiple temporal scales.

    PubMed

    Wehrl, Hans F; Hossain, Mosaddek; Lankes, Konrad; Liu, Chih-Chieh; Bezrukov, Ilja; Martirosian, Petros; Schick, Fritz; Reischl, Gerald; Pichler, Bernd J

    2013-09-01

    Combined positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a new tool to study functional processes in the brain. Here we study brain function in response to a barrel-field stimulus simultaneously using PET, which traces changes in glucose metabolism on a slow time scale, and functional MRI (fMRI), which assesses fast vascular and oxygenation changes during activation. We found spatial and quantitative discrepancies between the PET and the fMRI activation data. The functional connectivity of the rat brain was assessed by both modalities: the fMRI approach determined a total of nine known neural networks, whereas the PET method identified seven glucose metabolism-related networks. These results demonstrate the feasibility of combined PET-MRI for the simultaneous study of the brain at activation and rest, revealing comprehensive and complementary information to further decode brain function and brain networks.

  2. Early activation of Broca's area in grammar processing as revealed by the syntactic mismatch negativity and distributed source analysis.

    PubMed

    Hanna, Jeff; Mejias, Sandrine; Schelstraete, Marie-Anne; Pulvermüller, Friedemann; Shtyrov, Yury; Van der Lely, Heather K J

    2014-01-01

    Though activation of Broca's region in the combinatorial processing of symbols (language, music) has been revealed by neurometabolic studies, most previous neurophysiological research found the earliest grammar indices in the temporal cortex, with inferior-frontal generators becoming active at relatively late stages. We use the attention- and task-free syntactic mismatch negativity (sMMN) event-related potential (ERP) to measure rapid and automatic sensitivity of the human brain to grammatical information in participants' native language (French). Further, sources underlying the MMN were estimated by applying the Parametrical Empirical Bayesian (PEB) approach, with the Multiple Sparse Priors (MSP) technique. Results showed reliable grammar-related activation focused on Broca's region already in the 150-190 ms time window, providing robust documentation of its involvement in the first stages of syntactic processing.

  3. Usability testing of a monitoring and feedback tool to stimulate physical activity

    PubMed Central

    van der Weegen, Sanne; Verwey, Renée; Tange, Huibert J; Spreeuwenberg, Marieke D; de Witte, Luc P

    2014-01-01

    Introduction A monitoring and feedback tool to stimulate physical activity, consisting of an activity sensor, smartphone application (app), and website for patients and their practice nurses, has been developed: the ‘It’s LiFe!’ tool. In this study the usability of the tool was evaluated by technology experts and end users (people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or type 2 diabetes, with ages from 40–70 years), to improve the user interfaces and content of the tool. Patients and methods The study had four phases: 1) a heuristic evaluation with six technology experts; 2) a usability test in a laboratory by five patients; 3) a pilot in real life wherein 20 patients used the tool for 3 months; and 4) a final lab test by five patients. In both lab tests (phases 2 and 4) qualitative data were collected through a thinking-aloud procedure and video recordings, and quantitative data through questions about task complexity, text comprehensiveness, and readability. In addition, the post-study system usability questionnaire (PSSUQ) was completed for the app and the website. In the pilot test (phase 3), all patients were interviewed three times and the Software Usability Measurement Inventory (SUMI) was completed. Results After each phase, improvements were made, mainly to the layout and text. The main improvement was a refresh button for active data synchronization between activity sensor, app, and server, implemented after connectivity problems in the pilot test. The mean score on the PSSUQ for the website improved from 5.6 (standard deviation [SD] 1.3) to 6.5 (SD 0.5), and for the app from 5.4 (SD 1.5) to 6.2 (SD 1.1). Satisfaction in the pilot was not very high according to the SUMI. Discussion The use of laboratory versus real-life tests and expert-based versus user-based tests revealed a wide range of usability issues. The usability of the It’s LiFe! tool improved considerably during the study. PMID:24669188

  4. The crystal structure of phosphorylated MAPK13 reveals common structural features and differences in p38 MAPK family activation

    PubMed Central

    Yurtsever, Zeynep; Scheaffer, Suzanne M.; Romero, Arthur G.; Holtzman, Michael J.; Brett, Tom J.

    2015-01-01

    The p38 MAP kinases (p38 MAPKs) represent an important family centrally involved in mediating extracellular signaling. Recent studies indicate that family members such as MAPK13 (p38δ) display a selective cellular and tissue expression and are therefore involved in specific diseases. Detailed structural studies of all p38 MAPK family members are crucial for the design of specific inhibitors. In order to facilitate such ventures, the structure of MAPK13 was determined in both the inactive (unphosphorylated; MAPK13) and active (dual phosphorylated; MAPK13/pTpY) forms. Here, the first preparation, crystallization and structure determination of MAPK13/pTpY are presented and the structure is compared with the previously reported structure of MAPK13 in order to facilitate studies for structure-based drug design. A comprehensive analysis of inactive versus active structures for the p38 MAPK family is also presented. It is found that MAPK13 undergoes a larger interlobe configurational rearrangement upon activation compared with MAPK14. Surprisingly, the analysis of activated p38 MAPK structures (MAP12/pTpY, MAPK13/pTpY and MAPK14/pTpY) reveals that, despite a high degree of sequence similarity, different side chains are used to coordinate the phosphorylated residues. There are also differences in the rearrangement of the hinge region that occur in MAPK14 compared with MAPK13 which would affect inhibitor binding. A thorough examination of all of the active (phosphorylated) and inactive (unphosphorylated) p38 MAPK family member structures was performed to reveal a common structural basis of activation for the p38 MAP kinase family and to identify structural differences that may be exploited for developing family member-specific inhibitors. PMID:25849390

  5. The crystal structure of phosphorylated MAPK13 reveals common structural features and differences in p38 MAPK family activation.

    PubMed

    Yurtsever, Zeynep; Scheaffer, Suzanne M; Romero, Arthur G; Holtzman, Michael J; Brett, Tom J

    2015-04-01

    The p38 MAP kinases (p38 MAPKs) represent an important family centrally involved in mediating extracellular signaling. Recent studies indicate that family members such as MAPK13 (p38δ) display a selective cellular and tissue expression and are therefore involved in specific diseases. Detailed structural studies of all p38 MAPK family members are crucial for the design of specific inhibitors. In order to facilitate such ventures, the structure of MAPK13 was determined in both the inactive (unphosphorylated; MAPK13) and active (dual phosphorylated; MAPK13/pTpY) forms. Here, the first preparation, crystallization and structure determination of MAPK13/pTpY are presented and the structure is compared with the previously reported structure of MAPK13 in order to facilitate studies for structure-based drug design. A comprehensive analysis of inactive versus active structures for the p38 MAPK family is also presented. It is found that MAPK13 undergoes a larger interlobe configurational rearrangement upon activation compared with MAPK14. Surprisingly, the analysis of activated p38 MAPK structures (MAP12/pTpY, MAPK13/pTpY and MAPK14/pTpY) reveals that, despite a high degree of sequence similarity, different side chains are used to coordinate the phosphorylated residues. There are also differences in the rearrangement of the hinge region that occur in MAPK14 compared with MAPK13 which would affect inhibitor binding. A thorough examination of all of the active (phosphorylated) and inactive (unphosphorylated) p38 MAPK family member structures was performed to reveal a common structural basis of activation for the p38 MAP kinase family and to identify structural differences that may be exploited for developing family member-specific inhibitors.

  6. Integrated Activity and Genetic Profiling of Secreted Peptidases in Cryptococcus neoformans Reveals an Aspartyl Peptidase Required for Low pH Survival and Virulence

    PubMed Central

    Clarke, Starlynn C.; Dumesic, Phillip A.; Homer, Christina M.; O’Donoghue, Anthony J.; La Greca, Florencia; Pallova, Lenka; Majer, Pavel; Madhani, Hiten D.; Craik, Charles S.

    2016-01-01

    The opportunistic fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans is a major cause of mortality in immunocompromised individuals, resulting in more than 600,000 deaths per year. Many human fungal pathogens secrete peptidases that influence virulence, but in most cases the substrate specificity and regulation of these enzymes remains poorly understood. The paucity of such information is a roadblock to our understanding of the biological functions of peptidases and whether or not these enzymes are viable therapeutic targets. We report here an unbiased analysis of secreted peptidase activity and specificity in C. neoformans using a mass spectrometry-based substrate profiling strategy and subsequent functional investigations. Our initial studies revealed that global peptidase activity and specificity are dramatically altered by environmental conditions. To uncover the substrate preferences of individual enzymes and interrogate their biological functions, we constructed and profiled a ten-member gene deletion collection of candidate secreted peptidases. Through this deletion approach, we characterized the substrate specificity of three peptidases within the context of the C. neoformans secretome, including an enzyme known to be important for fungal entry into the brain. We selected a previously uncharacterized peptidase, which we term Major aspartyl peptidase 1 (May1), for detailed study due to its substantial contribution to extracellular proteolytic activity. Based on the preference of May1 for proteolysis between hydrophobic amino acids, we screened a focused library of aspartyl peptidase inhibitors and identified four high-affinity antagonists. Finally, we tested may1Δ strains in a mouse model of C. neoformans infection and found that strains lacking this enzyme are significantly attenuated for virulence. Our study reveals the secreted peptidase activity and specificity of an important human fungal pathogen, identifies responsible enzymes through genetic tests of their

  7. Rap1 overexpression reveals that activated RasD induces separable defects during Dictyostelium development.

    PubMed

    Louis, S A; Weeks, G; Spiegelman, G B

    1997-10-15

    One of the Dictyostelium ras genes, rasD, is expressed preferentially in prestalk cells at the slug stage of development and overexpression of this gene containing a G12T activating mutation causes the formation of aberrant multitipped aggregates that are blocked from further development (Reymond et al., 1986, Nature, 323, 340-343). The ability of the Dictyostelium rap1 gene to suppress this abnormal developmental phenotype was investigated. The rap1 gene and G12V activated and G10V negative mutant forms of the rap1 gene were independently linked to the rasD promoter and each construct used to transform M1, a Dictyostelium cell line expressing RasD[G12T]. Transformants of M1 that expressed Rap1 or Rap1[G12V] protein still formed multitipped aggregates, but most tips were able to complete development and form fruiting bodies. Cell lines showing this modified phenotype were designated ME (multitipped escape). The rap1[G10V] construct did not modify the M1 phenotype. These data suggest that overexpression of RasD[G12T] has two effects, the formation of a multitipped aggregate and a block in subsequent differentiation and that the expression of Rap1 or Rap1[G12V] reverses only the latter. Differentiation of ME cells in low density monolayers showed the identical low level of stalk and spore cell formation seen for M1 cells under the same conditions. Thus the cell autonomous defect in monolayer differentiation induced in the M1 strain was not corrected in the ME strain. Cell type-specific gene expression during the development of M1 cells is dramatically altered: prestalk cell-specific gene expression is greatly enhanced, whereas prespore-specific gene expression is almost suppressed (Louis et al., 1997, Mol. Biol. Cell, 8, 303-312). During the development of ME cells, ecmA mRNA levels were restored to those seen for Ax3, and tagB mRNA levels were also markedly reduced, although not to Ax3 levels. cotC expression in ME cells was enhanced severalfold relative to M1

  8. Prefrontal activation during two Japanese Stroop tasks revealed with multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Yukina; Sumitani, Satsuki; Hosokawa, Mai; Ohmori, Tetsuro

    2015-01-01

    The Stroop task is sometimes used in psychiatric research to elicit prefrontal activity, which presumably reflects cognitive functioning. Although there are two Stroop tasks (Kana script and Kanji script) in Japan, it is unclear whether these tasks elicit the same hemoglobin changes. Moreover, it is unclear whether psychological conditions or characteristics influence hemoglobin changes in the Japanese Stroop task. The aim of this study was to clarify whether hemoglobin changes elicited by the two Japanese Stroop tasks accurately reflected cognitive functioning. Hemoglobin changes were measured with multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) in 100 healthy Japanese participants performing two Japanese Stroop tasks. The Beck-Depression Inventory (BDI), State-Trait-Anxiety Inventory (STAI), and Maudsley Obsessive Compulsive Inventory (MOCI) were administered to participants to identify psychological conditions or personality characteristics. Compared with the Kanji task, the Kana task produced a greater Stroop effect and a larger increase in oxyhemoglobin (oxy-Hb) concentration. Moreover there were no significant correlations between oxy-Hb concentration and BDI, STAI-trait, STAI-state, or MOCI scores. Therefore we found that a participant's psychological conditions or characteristics did not influence the hemodynamic changes during either task. These data suggest the Kana Stroop task is more useful than the Kanji Stroop task for NIRS studies in psychiatric research.

  9. Amplitude-modulated stimuli reveal auditory-visual interactions in brain activity and brain connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Laing, Mark; Rees, Adrian; Vuong, Quoc C.

    2015-01-01

    The temporal congruence between auditory and visual signals coming from the same source can be a powerful means by which the brain integrates information from different senses. To investigate how the brain uses temporal information to integrate auditory and visual information from continuous yet unfamiliar stimuli, we used amplitude-modulated tones and size-modulated shapes with which we could manipulate the temporal congruence between the sensory signals. These signals were independently modulated at a slow or a fast rate. Participants were presented with auditory-only, visual-only, or auditory-visual (AV) trials in the fMRI scanner. On AV trials, the auditory and visual signal could have the same (AV congruent) or different modulation rates (AV incongruent). Using psychophysiological interaction analyses, we found that auditory regions showed increased functional connectivity predominantly with frontal regions for AV incongruent relative to AV congruent stimuli. We further found that superior temporal regions, shown previously to integrate auditory and visual signals, showed increased connectivity with frontal and parietal regions for the same contrast. Our findings provide evidence that both activity in a network of brain regions and their connectivity are important for AV integration, and help to bridge the gap between transient and familiar AV stimuli used in previous studies. PMID:26483710

  10. What's in a name? Brain activity reveals categorization processes differ across languages.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chao; Tardif, Twila; Mai, Xiaoqin; Gehring, William J; Simms, Nina; Luo, Yue-Jia

    2010-11-01

    The linguistic relativity hypothesis proposes that speakers of different languages perceive and conceptualize the world differently, but do their brains reflect these differences? In English, most nouns do not provide linguistic clues to their categories, whereas most Mandarin Chinese nouns provide explicit category information, either morphologically (e.g., the morpheme "vehicle" che1 in the noun "train" huo3che1) or orthographically (e.g., the radical "bug" chong2 in the character for the noun "butterfly" hu2die2). When asked to judge the membership of atypical (e.g., train) vs. typical (e.g., car) pictorial exemplars of a category (e.g., vehicle), English speakers (N = 26) showed larger N300 and N400 event-related potential (ERP) component differences, whereas Mandarin speakers (N = 27) showed no such differences. Further investigation with Mandarin speakers only (N = 22) found that it was the morphologically transparent items that did not show a typicality effect, whereas orthographically transparent items elicited moderate N300 and N400 effects. In a follow-up study with English speakers only (N = 25), morphologically transparent items also showed different patterns of N300 and N400 activation than nontransparent items even for English speakers. Together, these results demonstrate that even for pictorial stimuli, how and whether category information is embedded in object names affects the extent to which typicality is used in category judgments, as shown in N300 and N400 responses.

  11. Revealing the spin–vibronic coupling mechanism of thermally activated delayed fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Etherington, Marc K.; Gibson, Jamie; Higginbotham, Heather F.; Penfold, Thomas J.; Monkman, Andrew P.

    2016-01-01

    Knowing the underlying photophysics of thermally activated delayed fluorescence (TADF) allows proper design of high efficiency organic light-emitting diodes. We have proposed a model to describe reverse intersystem crossing (rISC) in donor–acceptor charge transfer molecules, where spin–orbit coupling between singlet and triplet states is mediated by one of the local triplet states of the donor (or acceptor). This second order, vibronically coupled mechanism describes the basic photophysics of TADF. Through a series of measurements, whereby the energy ordering of the charge transfer (CT) excited states and the local triplet are tuned in and out of resonance, we show that TADF reaches a maximum at the resonance point, substantiating our model of rISC. Moreover, using photoinduced absorption, we show how the populations of both singlet and triplet CT states and the local triplet state change in and out of resonance. Our vibronic coupling rISC model is used to predict this behaviour and describes how rISC and TADF are affected by external perturbation. PMID:27901046

  12. Extensive site-directed mutagenesis reveals interconnected functional units in the alkaline phosphatase active site

    PubMed Central

    Sunden, Fanny; Peck, Ariana; Salzman, Julia; Ressl, Susanne; Herschlag, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Enzymes enable life by accelerating reaction rates to biological timescales. Conventional studies have focused on identifying the residues that have a direct involvement in an enzymatic reaction, but these so-called ‘catalytic residues’ are embedded in extensive interaction networks. Although fundamental to our understanding of enzyme function, evolution, and engineering, the properties of these networks have yet to be quantitatively and systematically explored. We dissected an interaction network of five residues in the active site of Escherichia coli alkaline phosphatase. Analysis of the complex catalytic interdependence of specific residues identified three energetically independent but structurally interconnected functional units with distinct modes of cooperativity. From an evolutionary perspective, this network is orders of magnitude more probable to arise than a fully cooperative network. From a functional perspective, new catalytic insights emerge. Further, such comprehensive energetic characterization will be necessary to benchmark the algorithms required to rationally engineer highly efficient enzymes. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06181.001 PMID:25902402

  13. Revealing the spin-vibronic coupling mechanism of thermally activated delayed fluorescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Etherington, Marc K.; Gibson, Jamie; Higginbotham, Heather F.; Penfold, Thomas J.; Monkman, Andrew P.

    2016-11-01

    Knowing the underlying photophysics of thermally activated delayed fluorescence (TADF) allows proper design of high efficiency organic light-emitting diodes. We have proposed a model to describe reverse intersystem crossing (rISC) in donor-acceptor charge transfer molecules, where spin-orbit coupling between singlet and triplet states is mediated by one of the local triplet states of the donor (or acceptor). This second order, vibronically coupled mechanism describes the basic photophysics of TADF. Through a series of measurements, whereby the energy ordering of the charge transfer (CT) excited states and the local triplet are tuned in and out of resonance, we show that TADF reaches a maximum at the resonance point, substantiating our model of rISC. Moreover, using photoinduced absorption, we show how the populations of both singlet and triplet CT states and the local triplet state change in and out of resonance. Our vibronic coupling rISC model is used to predict this behaviour and describes how rISC and TADF are affected by external perturbation.

  14. Optical Coherence Tomography angiography reveals laminar microvascular hemodynamics in the rat somatosensory cortex during activation.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Vivek J; Radhakrishnan, Harsha

    2014-11-15

    The BOLD (blood-oxygen-level dependent) fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) signal is shaped, in part, by changes in red blood cell (RBC) content and flow across vascular compartments over time. These complex dynamics have been challenging to characterize directly due to a lack of appropriate imaging modalities. In this study, making use of infrared light scattering from RBCs, depth-resolved Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) angiography was applied to image laminar functional hyperemia in the rat somatosensory cortex. After defining and validating depth-specific metrics for changes in RBC content and speed, laminar hemodynamic responses in microvasculature up to cortical depths of >1mm were measured during a forepaw stimulus. The results provide a comprehensive picture of when and where changes in RBC content and speed occur during and immediately following cortical activation. In summary, the earliest and largest microvascular RBC content changes occurred in the middle cortical layers, while post-stimulus undershoots were most prominent superficially. These laminar variations in positive and negative responses paralleled known distributions of excitatory and inhibitory synapses, suggesting neuronal underpinnings. Additionally, the RBC speed response consistently returned to baseline more promptly than RBC content after the stimulus across cortical layers, supporting a "flow-volume mismatch" of hemodynamic origin.

  15. Mass spectrometry footprinting reveals the structural rearrangements of cyanobacterial orange carotenoid protein upon light activation

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Haijun; Zhang, Hao; King, Jeremy D.; Wolf, Nathan R.; Prado, Mindy; Gross, Michael L.; Blankenship, Robert E.

    2014-12-01

    The orange carotenoid protein (OCP), a member of the family of blue light photoactive proteins, is required for efficient photoprotection in many cyanobacteria. Photoexcitation of the carotenoid in the OCP results in structural changes within the chromophore and the protein to give an active red form of OCP that is required for phycobilisome binding and consequent fluorescence quenching. We characterized the light-dependent structural changes by mass spectrometry-based carboxyl footprinting and found that an α helix in the N-terminal extension of OCP plays a key role in this photoactivation process. Although this helix is located on and associates with the outside of the β-sheet core in the C-terminal domain of OCP in the dark, photoinduced changes in the domain structure disrupt this interaction. We propose that this mechanism couples light-dependent carotenoid conformational changes to global protein conformational dynamics in favor of functional phycobilisome binding, and is an essential part of the OCP photocycle.

  16. Comparative Analysis of Carbohydrate Active Enzymes in Clostridium termitidis CT1112 Reveals Complex Carbohydrate Degradation Ability

    PubMed Central

    Munir, Riffat I.; Schellenberg, John; Henrissat, Bernard; Verbeke, Tobin J.; Sparling, Richard; Levin, David B.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium termitidis strain CT1112 is an anaerobic, gram positive, mesophilic, cellulolytic bacillus isolated from the gut of the wood-feeding termite, Nasutitermes lujae. It produces biofuels such as hydrogen and ethanol from cellulose, cellobiose, xylan, xylose, glucose, and other sugars, and therefore could be used for biofuel production from biomass through consolidated bioprocessing. The first step in the production of biofuel from biomass by microorganisms is the hydrolysis of complex carbohydrates present in biomass. This is achieved through the presence of a repertoire of secreted or complexed carbohydrate active enzymes (CAZymes), sometimes organized in an extracellular organelle called cellulosome. To assess the ability and understand the mechanism of polysaccharide hydrolysis in C. termitidis, the recently sequenced strain CT1112 of C. termitidis was analyzed for both CAZymes and cellulosomal components, and compared to other cellulolytic bacteria. A total of 355 CAZyme sequences were identified in C. termitidis, significantly higher than other Clostridial species. Of these, high numbers of glycoside hydrolases (199) and carbohydrate binding modules (95) were identified. The presence of a variety of CAZymes involved with polysaccharide utilization/degradation ability suggests hydrolysis potential for a wide range of polysaccharides. In addition, dockerin-bearing enzymes, cohesion domains and a cellulosomal gene cluster were identified, indicating the presence of potential cellulosome assembly. PMID:25101643

  17. Improved detection reveals active β-papillomavirus infection in skin lesions from kidney transplant recipients.

    PubMed

    Borgogna, Cinzia; Lanfredini, Simone; Peretti, Alberto; De Andrea, Marco; Zavattaro, Elisa; Colombo, Enrico; Quaglia, Marco; Boldorini, Renzo; Miglio, Umberto; Doorbar, John; Bavinck, Jan N Bouwes; Quint, Koen D; de Koning, Maurits N C; Landolfo, Santo; Gariglio, Marisa

    2014-08-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether detection of β-HPV gene products, as defined in epidermodysplasia verruciformis skin cancer, could also be observed in lesions from kidney transplant recipients alongside the viral DNA. A total of 111 samples, corresponding to 79 skin lesions abscised from 17 kidney transplant recipients, have been analyzed. The initial PCR analysis demonstrated that β-HPV-DNA was highly present in our tumor series (85%). Using a combination of antibodies raised against the E4 and L1 proteins of the β-genotypes, we were able to visualize productive infection in 4 out of 19 actinic keratoses, and in the pathological borders of 1 out of 14 squamous cell carcinomas and 1 out of 31 basal cell carcinomas. Increased expression of the cellular proliferation marker minichromosome maintenance protein 7 (MCM7), that extended into the upper epithelial layers, was a common feature of all the E4-positive areas, indicating that cells were driven into the cell cycle in areas of productive viral infections. Although the present study does not directly demonstrate a causal role of these viruses, the detection of E4 and L1 positivity in actinic keratosis and the adjacent pathological epithelium of skin cancer, clearly shows that β-HPV are actively replicating in the intraepidermal precursor lesions of kidney transplant recipients and can therefore cooperate with other carcinogenic agents, such as UVB, favoring skin cancer promotion.

  18. Revealing Physical Activity of GRB Central Engine with Macronova/Kilonova Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shen, Zhao-Qiang; Jin, Zhi-Ping; Liang, Yun-Feng; Li, Xiang; Fan, Yi-Zhong; Wei, Da-Ming

    2017-02-01

    The modeling of Li-Paczyński macronova/kilonova signals gives a reasonable estimate on the neutron-rich material ejected during the neutron star mergers. Usually the accretion disk is more massive than the macronova ejecta, with which the efficiencies of converting the disk mass into prompt emission of three merger-driven GRBs can hence be directly constrained. Supposing the macronovae/kilonovae associated with GRB 050709, GRB 060614, and GRB 130603B arose from radioactive decay of the r-process material, the upper limit on energy conversion efficiencies are found to be as low as ∼10‑6–10‑4. Moreover, for all three events, neutrino annihilation is likely powerful enough to account for the brief gamma-ray flashes. Neutrino annihilation can also explain the “extended” emission lasting ∼100 s in GRB 050709, but does not work for the one in GRB 060614. These progresses demonstrate that the macronova can serve as a novel probe of the central engine activity.

  19. Laser speckle contrast reveals cerebral blood flow dynamics evoked by optogenetically controlled neuronal activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Nan; Thakor, Nitish V.; Pelled, Galit

    2013-03-01

    As a critical basis of functional brain imaging, neurovascular coupling describes the link between neuronal and hemodynamic changes. The majority of in vivo neurovascular coupling studies was performed by inducing sensory stimulation via afferent inputs. Unfortunately such an approach results in recruiting of multiple types of cells, which confounds the explanation of neuronal roles in stimulus evoked hemodynamic changes. Recently optogenetics has emerged to provide immediate control of neurons by exciting or inhibiting genetically engineered neurons expressing light sensitive proteins. However, there is a need for optical methods capable of imaging the concurrent hemodynamic changes. We utilize laser speckle contrast imaging (LSCI) to obtain high resolution display of cerebral blood flow (CBF) in the vicinity of the targeted neural population. LSCI is a minimally invasive method for imaging CBF in microvessels through thinned skull, and produces images with high spatiotemporal resolution, wide field of view. In the integrated system light sources with different wavelengths and band-passing/blocking filters were used to allow simultaneous optical manipulation of neuronal activities and optical imaging of corresponding CBF. Experimental studies were carried out in a rodent model expressing channalrhodopsin (ChR2) in excitatory neurons in the somatosensory cortex (S1). The results demonstrated significant increases of CBF in response to ChR2 stimulation (exciting neuronal firing) comparable to the CBF response to contralateral forepaw stimulation. The approach promises to be an exciting minimally invasive method to study neurovascular coupling. The complete system provides a novel approach for broad neuroscience applications.

  20. Synchrotron X-ray imaging reveals a correlation of tumor copper speciation with Clioquinol's anticancer activity

    SciTech Connect

    Barrea, Raul A.; Chen, Di; Irving, Thomas C.; Dou, Q. Ping

    2009-10-21

    Tumor development and metastasis depend on angiogenesis that requires certain growth factors, proteases, and the trace element copper (Cu). Recent studies suggest that Cu could be used as a novel target for cancer therapies. Clioquinol (CQ), an antibiotic that is able to form stable complexes with Cu or zinc (Zn), has shown proteasome-inhibitory, androgen receptor-suppressing, apoptosis-inducing, and antitumor activities in human cancer cells and xenografts. The mechanisms underlying the interaction of CQ with cellular Cu, the alteration of the Cu/Zn ratio and the antitumor role of CQ in vivo have not been fully elucidated. We report here that Cu accumulates in tumor tissue and that the Cu/Zn balances in tumor, but not normal, tissue change significantly after the treatment with CQ. Cu speciation analysis showed that the Cu(I) species is predominant in both normal and tumor tissues and that Cu(II) content was significantly increased in tumor, but not normal tissue after CQ treatment. Our findings indicate that CQ can interact with cellular Cu in vivo, dysregulates the Cu/Zn balance and is able to convert Cu(I) to Cu(II) in tumor tissue. This conversion of Cu(I) to Cu(II) may be associated with CQ-induced proteasome inhibition and growth suppression in the human prostate tumor xenografts.

  1. Potentially novel copper resistance genes in copper-enriched activated sludge revealed by metagenomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Li, Li-Guan; Cai, Lin; Zhang, Xu-Xiang; Zhang, Tong

    2014-12-01

    In this study, we utilized the Illumina high-throughput metagenomic approach to investigate diversity and abundance of both microbial community and copper resistance genes (CuRGs) in activated sludge (AS) which was enriched under copper selective stress up to 800 mg/L. The raw datasets (~3.5 Gb for each sample, i.e., the copper-enriched AS and the control AS) were merged and normalized for the BLAST analyses against the SILVA SSU rRNA gene database and self-constructed copper resistance protein database (CuRD). Also, the raw metagenomic sequences were assembled into contigs and analyzed based on Open Reading Frames (ORFs) to identify potentially novel copper resistance genes. Among the different resistance systems for copper detoxification under the high copper stress condition, the Cus system was the most enriched system. The results also indicated that genes encoding multi-copper oxidase played a more important role than those encoding efflux proteins. More significantly, several potentially novel copper resistance ORFs were identified by Pfam search and phylogenic analysis. This study demonstrated a new understanding of microbial-mediated copper resistance under high copper stress using high-throughput shotgun sequencing technique.

  2. Intratympanic manganese administration revealed sound intensity and frequency dependent functional activity in rat auditory pathway.

    PubMed

    Jin, Seong-Uk; Lee, Jae-Jun; Hong, Kwan Soo; Han, Mun; Park, Jang-Woo; Lee, Hui Joong; Lee, Sangheun; Lee, Kyu-Yup; Shin, Kyung Min; Cho, Jin Ho; Cheong, Chaejoon; Chang, Yongmin

    2013-09-01

    The cochlear plays a vital role in the sense and sensitivity of hearing; however, there is currently a lack of knowledge regarding the relationships between mechanical transduction of sound at different intensities and frequencies in the cochlear and the neurochemical processes that lead to neuronal responses in the central auditory system. In the current study, we introduced manganese-enhanced MRI (MEMRI), a convenient in vivo imaging method, for investigation of how sound, at different intensities and frequencies, is propagated from the cochlear to the central auditory system. Using MEMRI with intratympanic administration, we demonstrated differential manganese signal enhancements according to sound intensity and frequencies in the ascending auditory pathway of the rat after administration of intratympanic MnCl2.Compared to signal enhancement without explicit sound stimuli, auditory structures in the ascending auditory pathway showed stronger signal enhancement in rats who received sound stimuli of 10 and 40 kHz. In addition, signal enhancement with a stimulation frequency of 40 kHz was stronger than that with 10 kHz. Therefore, the results of this study seem to suggest that, in order to achieve an effective response to high sound intensity or frequency, more firing of auditory neurons, or firing of many auditory neurons together for the pooled neural activity is needed.

  3. Cryo-EM reveals an active role for aminoacyl-tRNA in the accommodation process

    PubMed Central

    Valle, Mikel; Sengupta, Jayati; Swami, Neil K.; Grassucci, Robert A.; Burkhardt, Nils; Nierhaus, Knud H.; Agrawal, Rajendra K.; Frank, Joachim

    2002-01-01

    During the elongation cycle of protein biosynthesis, the specific amino acid coded for by the mRNA is delivered by a complex that is comprised of the cognate aminoacyl-tRNA, elongation factor Tu and GTP. As this ternary complex binds to the ribosome, the anticodon end of the tRNA reaches the decoding center in the 30S subunit. Here we present the cryo- electron microscopy (EM) study of an Escherichia coli 70S ribosome-bound ternary complex stalled with an antibiotic, kirromycin. In the cryo-EM map the anticodon arm of the tRNA presents a new conformation that appears to facilitate the initial codon–anticodon interaction. Furthermore, the elbow region of the tRNA is seen to contact the GTPase-associated center on the 50S subunit of the ribosome, suggesting an active role of the tRNA in the transmission of the signal prompting the GTP hydrolysis upon codon recognition. PMID:12093756

  4. Repeated surveys reveal nontectonic exposure of supposedly active normal faults in the central Apennines, Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kastelic, Vanja; Burrato, Pierfrancesco; Carafa, Michele M. C.; Basili, Roberto

    2017-01-01

    We investigate the geomorphic processes that expose bedrock fault surfaces from under their slope-deposit cover in the central Apennines (Italy). These bedrock fault surfaces are generally located at various heights on mountain fronts above the local base level of glacio-fluvial valleys and intermountain fluvio-lacustrine basins and are laterally confined to the extent of related mountain fronts. The process that led to the exposure of fault surfaces has often been exclusively attributed to coseismic earthquake slip and used as proxy for tectonic slip rates and earthquake recurrence estimations. We present the results of monitoring the contact between the exposed fault surfaces and slope deposits at 23 measurement points on 12 different faults over 3.4 year long observation period. We detected either downward or upward movements of the slope deposit with respect to the fault surface between consecutive measurements. During the entire observation period all points, except one, registered a net downward movement in the 2.9-25.6 mm/yr range, resulting in the progressive exposure of the fault surface. During the monitoring period no major earthquakes occurred in the region, demonstrating that the measured exposure process is disconnected from seismic activity. Our results indicate that the fault surface exposure rates are rather due to gravitational and landsliding movements aided by weathering and slope degradation processes. The so far neglected slope degradation and other (sub)surface processes should thus be carefully taken into consideration before attempting to recover fault slip rates using surface gathered data.

  5. Visualization of poly(ADP-ribose) bound to PARG reveals inherent balance between exo- and endo-glycohydrolase activities

    PubMed Central

    Barkauskaite, Eva; Brassington, Amy; Tan, Edwin S.; Warwicker, Jim; Dunstan, Mark S.; Banos, Benito; Lafite, Pierre; Ahel, Marijan; Mitchison, Timothy J.; Ahel, Ivan; Leys, David

    2013-01-01

    Poly-ADP-ribosylation is a post-translational modification that regulates processes involved in genome stability. Breakdown of the poly(ADP-ribose) (PAR) polymer is catalysed by poly(ADP-ribose) glycohydrolase (PARG), whose endo-glycohydrolase activity generates PAR fragments. Here we present the crystal structure of PARG incorporating the PAR substrate. The two terminal ADP-ribose units of the polymeric substrate are bound in exo-mode. Biochemical and modelling studies reveal that PARG acts predominantly as an exo-glycohydrolase. This preference is linked to Phe902 (human numbering), which is responsible for low-affinity binding of the substrate in endo-mode. Our data reveal the mechanism of poly-ADP-ribosylation reversal, with ADP-ribose as the dominant product, and suggest that the release of apoptotic PAR fragments occurs at unusual PAR/PARG ratios. PMID:23917065

  6. Active Thermal Control Experiments for LISA Ground Verification Testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Higuchi, Sei; DeBra, Daniel B.

    2006-11-01

    The primary mission goal of LISA is detecting gravitational waves. LISA uses laser metrology to measure the distance between proof masses in three identical spacecrafts. The total acceleration disturbance to each proof mass is required to be below 3 × 10-15 m/s2√Hz . Optical path length variations on each optical bench must be kept below 40 pm/√Hz over 1 Hz to 0.1 mHz. Thermal variations due to, for example, solar radiation or temperature gradients across the proof mass housing will distort the spacecraft causing changes in the mass attraction and sensor location. We have developed a thermal control system developed for the LISA gravitational reference sensor (GRS) ground verification testing which provides thermal stability better than 1 mK/√Hz to f < 1 mHz and which by extension is suitable for in-flight thermal control for the LISA spacecraft to compensate solar irradiation. Thermally stable environment is very demanded for LISA performance verification. In a lab environment specifications can be met with considerable amount of insulation and thermal mass. For spacecraft, the very limited thermal mass calls for an active control system which can meet disturbance rejection and stability requirements simultaneously in the presence of long time delay. A simple proportional plus integral control law presently provides approximately 1 mK/√Hz of thermal stability for over 80 hours. Continuing development of a model predictive feed-forward algorithm will extend performance to below 1 mK/√Hz at f < 1 mHz and lower.

  7. Nitric Oxide Mediated Transcriptome Profiling Reveals Activation of Multiple Regulatory Pathways in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Hussain, Adil; Mun, Bong-Gyu; Imran, Qari M.; Lee, Sang-Uk; Adamu, Teferi A.; Shahid, Muhammad; Kim, Kyung-Min; Yun, Byung-Wook

    2016-01-01

    Imbalance between the accumulation and removal of nitric oxide and its derivatives is a challenge faced by all plants at the cellular level, and is especially important under stress conditions. Exposure of plants to various biotic and abiotic stresses causes rapid changes in cellular redox tone potentiated by the rise in reactive nitrogen species that serve as signaling molecules in mediating defensive responses. To understand mechanisms mediated by these signaling molecules, we performed a large-scale analysis of the Arabidopsis transcriptome induced by nitrosative stress. We generated an average of 84 and 91 million reads from three replicates each of control and 1 mM S-nitrosocysteine (CysNO)-infiltrated Arabidopsis leaf samples, respectively. After alignment, more than 95% of all reads successfully mapped to the reference and 32,535 genes and 55,682 transcripts were obtained. CysNO infiltration caused differential expression of 6436 genes (3448 up-regulated and 2988 down-regulated) and 6214 transcripts (3335 up-regulated and 2879 down-regulated) 6 h post-infiltration. These differentially expressed genes were found to be involved in key physiological processes, including plant defense against various biotic and abiotic stresses, hormone signaling, and other developmental processes. After quantile normalization of the FPKM values followed by student's T-test (P < 0.05) we identified 1165 DEGs (463 up-regulated and 702 down-regulated) with at least 2-folds change in expression after CysNO treatment. Expression patterns of selected genes involved in various biological pathways were verified using quantitative real-time PCR. This study provides comprehensive information about plant responses to nitrosative stress at transcript level and would prove helpful in understanding and incorporating mechanisms associated with nitrosative stress responses in plants. PMID:27446194

  8. Field-scale tracking of active methane-oxidizing communities in a landfill cover soil reveals spatial and seasonal variability.

    PubMed

    Henneberger, Ruth; Chiri, Eleonora; Bodelier, Paul E L; Frenzel, Peter; Lüke, Claudia; Schroth, Martin H

    2015-05-01

    Aerobic methane-oxidizing bacteria (MOB) in soils mitigate methane (CH4 ) emissions. We assessed spatial and seasonal differences in active MOB communities in a landfill cover soil characterized by highly variable environmental conditions. Field-based measurements of CH4 oxidation activity and stable-isotope probing of polar lipid-derived fatty acids (PLFA-SIP) were complemented by microarray analysis of pmoA genes and transcripts, linking diversity and function at the field scale. In situ CH4 oxidation rates varied between sites and were generally one order of magnitude lower in winter compared with summer. Results from PLFA-SIP and pmoA transcripts were largely congruent, revealing distinct spatial and seasonal clustering. Overall, active MOB communities were highly diverse. Type Ia MOB, specifically Methylomonas and Methylobacter, were key drivers for CH4 oxidation, particularly at a high-activity site. Type II MOB were mainly active at a site showing substantial fluctuations in CH4 loading and soil moisture content. Notably, Upland Soil Cluster-gamma-related pmoA transcripts were also detected, indicating concurrent oxidation of atmospheric CH4 . Spatial separation was less distinct in winter, with Methylobacter and uncultured MOB mediating CH4 oxidation. We propose that high diversity of active MOB communities in this soil is promoted by high variability in environmental conditions, facilitating substantial removal of CH4 generated in the waste body.

  9. The Truth Before and After: Brain Potentials Reveal Automatic Activation of Event Knowledge during Sentence Comprehension.

    PubMed

    Nieuwland, Mante S

    2015-11-01

    How does knowledge of real-world events shape our understanding of incoming language? Do temporal terms like "before" and "after" impact the online recruitment of real-world event knowledge? These questions were addressed in two ERP experiments, wherein participants read sentences that started with "before" or "after" and contained a critical word that rendered each sentence true or false (e.g., "Before/After the global economic crisis, securing a mortgage was easy/harder"). The critical words were matched on predictability, rated truth value, and semantic relatedness to the words in the sentence. Regardless of whether participants explicitly verified the sentences or not, false-after-sentences elicited larger N400s than true-after-sentences, consistent with the well-established finding that semantic retrieval of concepts is facilitated when they are consistent with real-world knowledge. However, although the truth judgments did not differ between before- and after-sentences, no such sentence N400 truth value effect occurred in before-sentences, whereas false-before-sentences elicited an enhanced subsequent positive ERPs. The temporal term "before" itself elicited more negative ERPs at central electrode channels than "after." These patterns of results show that, irrespective of ultimate sentence truth value judgments, semantic retrieval of concepts is momentarily facilitated when they are consistent with the known event outcome compared to when they are not. However, this inappropriate facilitation incurs later processing costs as reflected in the subsequent positive ERP deflections. The results suggest that automatic activation of event knowledge can impede the incremental semantic processes required to establish sentence truth value.

  10. Optogenetic activation reveals distinct roles of PIP3 and Akt in adipocyte insulin action.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yingke; Nan, Di; Fan, Jiannan; Bogan, Jonathan S; Toomre, Derek

    2016-05-15

    Glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4; also known as SLC2A4) resides on intracellular vesicles in muscle and adipose cells, and translocates to the plasma membrane in response to insulin. The phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)-Akt signaling pathway plays a major role in GLUT4 translocation; however, a challenge has been to unravel the potentially distinct contributions of PI3K and Akt (of which there are three isoforms, Akt1-Akt3) to overall insulin action. Here, we describe new optogenetic tools based on CRY2 and the N-terminus of CIB1 (CIBN). We used these 'Opto' modules to activate PI3K and Akt selectively in time and space in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. We validated these tools using biochemical assays and performed live-cell kinetic analyses of IRAP-pHluorin translocation (IRAP is also known as LNPEP and acts as a surrogate marker for GLUT4 here). Strikingly, Opto-PIP3 largely mimicked the maximal effects of insulin stimulation, whereas Opto-Akt only partially triggered translocation. Conversely, drug-mediated inhibition of Akt only partially dampened the translocation response of Opto-PIP3 In spatial optogenetic studies, focal targeting of Akt to a region of the cell marked the sites where IRAP-pHluorin vesicles fused, supporting the idea that local Akt-mediated signaling regulates exocytosis. Taken together, these results indicate that PI3K and Akt play distinct roles, and that PI3K stimulates Akt-independent pathways that are important for GLUT4 translocation.

  11. Metaproteomics of cellulose methanisation under thermophilic conditions reveals a surprisingly high proteolytic activity

    PubMed Central

    Lü, Fan; Bize, Ariane; Guillot, Alain; Monnet, Véronique; Madigou, Céline; Chapleur, Olivier; Mazéas, Laurent; He, Pinjing; Bouchez, Théodore

    2014-01-01

    Cellulose is the most abundant biopolymer on Earth. Optimising energy recovery from this renewable but recalcitrant material is a key issue. The metaproteome expressed by thermophilic communities during cellulose anaerobic digestion was investigated in microcosms. By multiplying the analytical replicates (65 protein fractions analysed by MS/MS) and relying solely on public protein databases, more than 500 non-redundant protein functions were identified. The taxonomic community structure as inferred from the metaproteomic data set was in good overall agreement with 16S rRNA gene tag pyrosequencing and fluorescent in situ hybridisation analyses. Numerous functions related to cellulose and hemicellulose hydrolysis and fermentation catalysed by bacteria related to Caldicellulosiruptor spp. and Clostridium thermocellum were retrieved, indicating their key role in the cellulose-degradation process and also suggesting their complementary action. Despite the abundance of acetate as a major fermentation product, key methanogenesis enzymes from the acetoclastic pathway were not detected. In contrast, enzymes from the hydrogenotrophic pathway affiliated to Methanothermobacter were almost exclusively identified for methanogenesis, suggesting a syntrophic acetate oxidation process coupled to hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. Isotopic analyses confirmed the high dominance of the hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis. Very surprising was the identification of an abundant proteolytic activity from Coprothermobacter proteolyticus strains, probably acting as scavenger and/or predator performing proteolysis and fermentation. Metaproteomics thus appeared as an efficient tool to unravel and characterise metabolic networks as well as ecological interactions during methanisation bioprocesses. More generally, metaproteomics provides direct functional insights at a limited cost, and its attractiveness should increase in the future as sequence databases are growing exponentially. PMID:23949661

  12. Revealing a strongly reddened, faint active galactic nucleus population by stacking deep co-added images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Varga, József; Csabai, István.; Dobos, László

    2012-10-01

    More than half of the sources identified by recent radio sky surveys have not been detected by wide-field optical surveys. We present a study, based on our co-added image stacking technique, in which our aim is to detect the optical emission from unresolved, isolated radio sources of the Very Large Array (VLA) Faint Images of the Radio Sky at Twenty-cm (FIRST) survey that have no identified optical counterparts in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Stripe 82 co-added data set. From the FIRST catalogue, 2116 such radio point sources were selected, and cut-out images, centred on the FIRST coordinates, were generated from the Stripe 82 images. The already co-added cut-outs were stacked once again to obtain images of high signal-to-noise ratio, in the hope that optical emission from the radio sources would become detectable. Multiple stacks were generated, based on the radio luminosity of the point sources. The resulting stacked images show central peaks similar to point sources. The peaks have very red colours with steep optical spectral energy distributions. We have found that the optical spectral index αν falls in the range -2.9 ≤ αν ≤ -2.2 (Sν∝ναν), depending only weakly on the radio flux. The total integration times of the stacks are between 270 and 300 h, and the corresponding 5σ detection limit is estimated to be about mr ≃ 26.6 mag. We argue that the detected light is mainly from the central regions of dust-reddened Type 1 active galactic nuclei. Dust-reddened quasars might represent an early phase of quasar evolution, and thus they can also give us an insight into the formation of massive galaxies. The data used in the paper are available on-line at http://www.vo.elte.hu/doublestacking.

  13. The characterization of the endoglucanase Cel12A from Gloeophyllum trabeum reveals an enzyme highly active on β-glucan.

    PubMed

    Miotto, Lis Schwartz; de Rezende, Camila Alves; Bernardes, Amanda; Serpa, Viviane Isabel; Tsang, Adrian; Polikarpov, Igor

    2014-01-01

    The basidiomycete fungus Gloeophyllum trabeum causes a typical brown rot and is known to use reactive oxygen species in the degradation of cellulose. The extracellular Cel12A is one of the few endo-1,4-β-glucanase produced by G. trabeum. Here we cloned cel12A and heterologously expressed it in Aspergillus niger. The identity of the resulting recombinant protein was confirmed by mass spectrometry. We used the purified GtCel12A to determine its substrate specificity and basic biochemical properties. The G. trabeum Cel12A showed highest activity on β-glucan, followed by lichenan, carboxymethylcellulose, phosphoric acid swollen cellulose, microcrystalline cellulose, and filter paper. The optimal pH and temperature for enzymatic activity were, respectively, 4.5 and 50 °C on β-glucan. Under these conditions specific activity was 239.2 ± 9.1 U mg(-1) and the half-life of the enzyme was 84.6 ± 3.5 hours. Thermofluor studies revealed that the enzyme was most thermal stable at pH 3. Using β-glucan as a substrate, the Km was 3.2 ± 0.5 mg mL(-1) and the Vmax was 0.41 ± 0.02 µmol min(-1). Analysis of the effects of GtCel12A on oat spelt and filter paper by scanning electron microscopy revealed the morphological changes taking place during the process.

  14. Monkey Feeding Assay for Testing Emetic Activity of Staphylococcal Enterotoxin.

    PubMed

    Seo, Keun Seok

    2016-01-01

    Staphylococcal enterotoxins (SEs) are unique bacterial toxins that cause gastrointestinal toxicity as well as superantigenic activity. Since systemic administration of SEs induces superantigenic activity leading to toxic shock syndrome that may mimic enterotoxic activity of SEs such as vomiting and diarrhea, oral administration of SEs in the monkey feeding assay is considered as a standard method to evaluate emetic activity of SEs. This chapter summarizes and discusses practical considerations of the monkey feeding assay used in studies characterizing classical and newly identified SEs.

  15. Characterization of AhR agonists reveals antagonistic activity in European herring gull (Larus argentatus) eggs.

    PubMed

    Muusse, Martine; Christensen, Guttorm; Gomes, Tânia; Kočan, Anton; Langford, Katherine; Tollefsen, Knut Erik; Vaňková, Lenka; Thomas, Kevin V

    2015-05-01

    European herring gull (Larus argentatus) eggs from two Norwegian islands, Musvær in the south east and Reiaren in Northern Norway, were screened for dioxins, furans, and dioxin-like and selected non-dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and subjected to non-target analysis to try to identify the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) agonists, responsible for elevated levels measured using the dioxin responsive chemically activated luciferase expression (DR-CALUX) assay. Eggs from Musvær contained chemically calculated toxic equivalent (WHO TEQ) levels of between 109 and 483 pg TEQ/g lw, and between 82 and 337 pg TEQ/g lw was determined in eggs from Reiaren. In particular PCB126 contributed highly to the total TEQ (69-82%). In 19 of the 23 samples the calculated WHO TEQ was higher than the TEQCALUX. Using CALUX specific relative effect potencies (REPs), the levels were lower at between 77 and 292 pg/g lw in eggs from Musvær and between 55 and 223 pg/g lw in eggs from Reiaren, which was higher than the TEQCALUX in 16 of the 23 samples. However, the means of the REP values and the TEQCALUX were not significantly different. This suggests the presence of compounds that can elicit antagonist effects, with a low binding affinity to the AhR. Non-target analysis identified the presence of hexachlorobenzene (HCB) (quantified at 9.6-185 pg/g lw) but neither this compound nor high concentrations of PCB126 and non-dioxin-like PCBs could explain the differences between the calculated TEQ or REP values and the TEQCALUX. Even though, for most AhR agonists, the sensitivity of herring gulls is not known, the reported levels can be considered to represent a risk for biological effects in the developing embryo, compared to LC50 values in chicken embryos. For human consumers of herring gull eggs, these eggs contain TEQ levels up to four times higher than the maximum tolerable weekly intake.

  16. International Baccalaureate as a Litmus Test Revealing Conflicting Values and Power Relations in the Israeli Education System

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yemini, Miri; Dvir, Yuval

    2016-01-01

    This study comprises a comprehensive attempt to reveal the power relations and conflicting interests within the local-global nexus of the Israeli public education system. The perceptions of different stakeholders were explored, in regard to the implementation of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program as an example of a globally oriented…

  17. The role of disease perceptions and results sharing in psychological adaptation after genetic susceptibility testing: the REVEAL Study.

    PubMed

    Ashida, Sato; Koehly, Laura M; Roberts, J Scott; Chen, Clara A; Hiraki, Susan; Green, Robert C

    2010-12-01

    This study evaluates the extent to which psychological adaptation (validated measures of depressive symptoms, anxiety, and test-specific distress) after genetic susceptibility testing is influenced by changes in beliefs about Alzheimer's disease (AD) and sharing of test results with others. Adult children of AD patients (N=269) from a randomized clinical trial involving genetic testing for apolipoprotein E (APOE) provided information before, as well as 6 weeks and 12 months after results disclosure. The levels of adaptation varied highly among participants at 12-month assessment. Participants who learned that they were ε4 negative (lower risk) had a reduction in perceived risk and concern about developing AD compared with those who learned that they were ε4 positive. Those who received results through an extended educational protocol (three in-person visits) had a larger decline in AD concern than those in a condensed protocol (educational brochure and two in-person visits). Increase in AD concern 6 weeks after disclosure was associated with increase in depression scores (b=0.20, P<0.01) and anxiety levels (b=0.20, P<0.01), and higher distress associated with AD genetic testing (b=0.18, P=0.02) 1 year after testing. Increase in perceived risk (b=0.16, P=0.04) was also associated with higher AD genetic testing distress. Sharing the test results with health professionals and friends (but not family) was associated with decrease in depression (b=-0.11, P=0.05) and anxiety levels (b=-0.16, P<0.01), respectively after a year. Enhancing discussion with regard to risks and concerns about AD during pretesting counseling and obtaining support through sharing the results after testing may help facilitate test recipients' long-term psychological adaptation.

  18. Phosphoproteomic Analysis of KSHV-Infected Cells Reveals Roles of ORF45-Activated RSK during Lytic Replication

    PubMed Central

    Avey, Denis; Tepper, Sarah; Li, Wenwei; Turpin, Zachary; Zhu, Fanxiu

    2015-01-01

    Kaposi’s Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus (KSHV) is an oncogenic virus which has adapted unique mechanisms to modulate the cellular microenvironment of its human host. The pathogenesis of KSHV is intimately linked to its manipulation of cellular signaling pathways, including the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway. We have previously shown that KSHV ORF45 contributes to the sustained activation of both ERK and p90 ribosomal S6 kinase (RSK, a major functional mediator of ERK/MAPK signaling) during KSHV lytic replication. ORF45-activated RSK is required for optimal KSHV lytic gene expression and progeny virion production, though the underlying mechanisms downstream of this activation are still unclear. We hypothesized that the activation of RSK by ORF45 causes differential phosphorylation of cellular and viral substrates, affecting biological processes essential for efficient KSHV lytic replication. Accordingly, we observed widespread and significant differences in protein phosphorylation upon induction of lytic replication. Mass-spectrometry-based phosphoproteomic screening identified putative substrates of ORF45-activated RSK in KSHV-infected cells. Bioinformatic analyses revealed that nuclear proteins, including several transcriptional regulators, were overrepresented among these candidates. We validated the ORF45/RSK-dependent phosphorylation of several putative substrates by employing KSHV BAC mutagenesis, kinase inhibitor treatments, and/or CRISPR-mediated knockout of RSK in KSHV-infected cells. Furthermore, we assessed the consequences of knocking out these substrates on ORF45/RSK-dependent regulation of gene expression and KSHV progeny virion production. Finally, we show data to support that ORF45 regulates the translational efficiency of a subset of viral/cellular genes with complex secondary structure in their 5’ UTR. Altogether, these data shed light on the mechanisms by which KSHV ORF45 manipulates

  19. Active populations of rare microbes in oceanic environments as revealed by bromodeoxyuridine incorporation and 454 tag sequencing.

    PubMed

    Hamasaki, Koji; Taniguchi, Akito; Tada, Yuya; Kaneko, Ryo; Miki, Takeshi

    2016-02-01

    The "rare biosphere" consisting of thousands of low-abundance microbial taxa is important as a seed bank or a gene pool to maintain microbial functional redundancy and robustness of the ecosystem. Here we investigated contemporaneous growth of diverse microbial taxa including rare taxa and determined their variability in environmentally distinctive locations along a north-south transect in the Pacific Ocean in order to assess which taxa were actively growing and how environmental factors influenced bacterial community structures. A bromodeoxyuridine-labeling technique in combination with PCR amplicon pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes gave 215-793 OTUs from 1200 to 3500 unique sequences in the total communities and 175-299 OTUs nearly 860 to 1800 sequences in the active communities. Unexpectedly, many of the active OTUs were not detected in the total fractions. Among these active but rare OTUs, some taxa (2-4% of rare OTUs) showed much higher abundance (>0.10% of total reads) in the active fraction than in the total fraction, suggesting that their contribution to bacterial community productivity or growth was much larger than that expected from their standing stocks at each location. An ordination plot by the principal component analysis presented that bacterial community compositions among 4 sampling locations and between total and active fractions were distinctive with each other. A redundancy analysis revealed that the variability of community compositions significantly correlated to seawater temperature and dissolved oxygen concentration. Also, a variation partitioning analysis showed that the environmental factors explained 49% of the variability of community compositions and the distance only explained 4.0% of its variability. These results implied very dynamic change of community structures due to environmental filtering. The active bacterial populations are more diverse and spread further in rare biosphere than we have ever seen. This study implied that rare

  20. Activation of acid-sensing ion channels by localized proton transient reveals their role in proton signaling.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Wei-Zheng; Liu, Di-Shi; Liu, Lu; She, Liang; Wu, Long-Jun; Xu, Tian-Le

    2015-09-15

    Extracellular transients of pH alterations likely mediate signal transduction in the nervous system. Neuronal acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) act as sensors for extracellular protons, but the mechanism underlying ASIC activation remains largely unknown. Here, we show that, following activation of a light-activated proton pump, Archaerhodopsin-3 (Arch), proton transients induced ASIC currents in both neurons and HEK293T cells co-expressing ASIC1a channels. Using chimera proteins that bridge Arch and ASIC1a by a glycine/serine linker, we found that successful coupling occurred within 15 nm distance. Furthermore, two-cell sniffer patch recording revealed that regulated release of protons through either Arch or voltage-gated proton channel Hv1 activated neighbouring cells expressing ASIC1a channels. Finally, computational modelling predicted the peak proton concentration at the intercellular interface to be at pH 6.7, which is acidic enough to activate ASICs in vivo. Our results highlight the pathophysiological role of proton signalling in the nervous system.

  1. Simultaneous fNIRS and thermal infrared imaging during cognitive task reveal autonomic correlates of prefrontal cortex activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinti, Paola; Cardone, Daniela; Merla, Arcangelo

    2015-12-01

    Functional Near Infrared-Spectroscopy (fNIRS) represents a powerful tool to non-invasively study task-evoked brain activity. fNIRS assessment of cortical activity may suffer for contamination by physiological noises of different origin (e.g. heart beat, respiration, blood pressure, skin blood flow), both task-evoked and spontaneous. Spontaneous changes occur at different time scales and, even if they are not directly elicited by tasks, their amplitude may result task-modulated. In this study, concentration changes of hemoglobin were recorded over the prefrontal cortex while simultaneously recording the facial temperature variations of the participants through functional infrared thermal (fIR) imaging. fIR imaging provides touch-less estimation of the thermal expression of peripheral autonomic. Wavelet analysis revealed task-modulation of the very low frequency (VLF) components of both fNIRS and fIR signals and strong coherence between them. Our results indicate that subjective cognitive and autonomic activities are intimately linked and that the VLF component of the fNIRS signal is affected by the autonomic activity elicited by the cognitive task. Moreover, we showed that task-modulated changes in vascular tone occur both at a superficial and at larger depth in the brain. Combined use of fNIRS and fIR imaging can effectively quantify the impact of VLF autonomic activity on the fNIRS signals.

  2. Simultaneous fNIRS and thermal infrared imaging during cognitive task reveal autonomic correlates of prefrontal cortex activity

    PubMed Central

    Pinti, Paola; Cardone, Daniela; Merla, Arcangelo

    2015-01-01

    Functional Near Infrared-Spectroscopy (fNIRS) represents a powerful tool to non-invasively study task-evoked brain activity. fNIRS assessment of cortical activity may suffer for contamination by physiological noises of different origin (e.g. heart beat, respiration, blood pressure, skin blood flow), both task-evoked and spontaneous. Spontaneous changes occur at different time scales and, even if they are not directly elicited by tasks, their amplitude may result task-modulated. In this study, concentration changes of hemoglobin were recorded over the prefrontal cortex while simultaneously recording the facial temperature variations of the participants through functional infrared thermal (fIR) imaging. fIR imaging provides touch-less estimation of the thermal expression of peripheral autonomic. Wavelet analysis revealed task-modulation of the very low frequency (VLF) components of both fNIRS and fIR signals and strong coherence between them. Our results indicate that subjective cognitive and autonomic activities are intimately linked and that the VLF component of the fNIRS signal is affected by the autonomic activity elicited by the cognitive task. Moreover, we showed that task-modulated changes in vascular tone occur both at a superficial and at larger depth in the brain. Combined use of fNIRS and fIR imaging can effectively quantify the impact of VLF autonomic activity on the fNIRS signals. PMID:26632763

  3. Analysis of cytotoxic activity at short incubation times reveals profound differences among Annonaceus acetogenins, inhibitors of mitochondrial Complex I.

    PubMed

    de Pedro, Nuria; Cautain, Bastien; Melguizo, Angeles; Cortes, Diego; Vicente, Francisca; Genilloud, Olga; Tormo, Jose R; Peláez, Fernando

    2013-02-01

    Annonaceous acetogenins are potent cytotoxic agents against tumor cell lines as well as potent inhibitors of mitochondrial Complex I (Degli Esposti and Ghelli Biochim Biophys Acta 1187:116-120, 1994; Degli Esposti et al. Biochem J 301(Pt 1):161-167, 1994; Tormo et al. Arch Biochem Biophys 369:119-126, 1999). Eighteen different ACGs belonging to seven structural sub-families were tested against six tumor and two non tumor cell lines in a MTT cytotoxicity assay to evaluate the correlation between mitochondrial Complex I inhibition and cytotoxic activity potency and selectivity. The results showed a substantial heterogeneity in potency and selectivity among the different compounds tested, although no clear overall structure-activity relationships could be established. To further characterize the biological activity of these compounds, four ACGs were selected based on their inhibition binding sites to Complex I, to evaluate their cytotoxic activity over a 15-minute to 48-hour period using a more sensitive time-course LDH cytotoxicity assay. Our results indicate that, although all of the ACGs were highly cytotoxic in HepG2 cell lines at 24 h, each sub-class behaves rather differently at shorter times. Perhaps other aspects related to how these compounds reach or bind to their target sites, or differences in their ability to cross the cell and/or the mitochondrial membranes, could help explain their different activities. This different behavior between ACGs may provide new clues for a better understanding of their potential antitumor properties.

  4. Novel covariance-based neutrality test of time-series data reveals asymmetries in ecological and economic systems

    DOE PAGES

    Washburne, Alex D.; Burby, Joshua W.; Lacker, Daniel; ...

    2016-09-30

    Systems as diverse as the interacting species in a community, alleles at a genetic locus, and companies in a market are characterized by competition (over resources, space, capital, etc) and adaptation. Neutral theory, built around the hypothesis that individual performance is independent of group membership, has found utility across the disciplines of ecology, population genetics, and economics, both because of the success of the neutral hypothesis in predicting system properties and because deviations from these predictions provide information about the underlying dynamics. However, most tests of neutrality are weak, based on static system properties such as species-abundance distributions or themore » number of singletons in a sample. Time-series data provide a window onto a system’s dynamics, and should furnish tests of the neutral hypothesis that are more powerful to detect deviations from neutrality and more informative about to the type of competitive asymmetry that drives the deviation. Here, we present a neutrality test for time-series data. We apply this test to several microbial time-series and financial time-series and find that most of these systems are not neutral. Our test isolates the covariance structure of neutral competition, thus facilitating further exploration of the nature of asymmetry in the covariance structure of competitive systems. Much like neutrality tests from population genetics that use relative abundance distributions have enabled researchers to scan entire genomes for genes under selection, we anticipate our time-series test will be useful for quick significance tests of neutrality across a range of ecological, economic, and sociological systems for which time-series data are available. Here, future work can use our test to categorize and compare the dynamic fingerprints of particular competitive asymmetries (frequency dependence, volatility smiles, etc) to improve forecasting and management of complex adaptive systems.« less

  5. Novel covariance-based neutrality test of time-series data reveals asymmetries in ecological and economic systems

    SciTech Connect

    Washburne, Alex D.; Burby, Joshua W.; Lacker, Daniel; Allesina, Stefano

    2016-09-30

    Systems as diverse as the interacting species in a community, alleles at a genetic locus, and companies in a market are characterized by competition (over resources, space, capital, etc) and adaptation. Neutral theory, built around the hypothesis that individual performance is independent of group membership, has found utility across the disciplines of ecology, population genetics, and economics, both because of the success of the neutral hypothesis in predicting system properties and because deviations from these predictions provide information about the underlying dynamics. However, most tests of neutrality are weak, based on static system properties such as species-abundance distributions or the number of singletons in a sample. Time-series data provide a window onto a system’s dynamics, and should furnish tests of the neutral hypothesis that are more powerful to detect deviations from neutrality and more informative about to the type of competitive asymmetry that drives the deviation. Here, we present a neutrality test for time-series data. We apply this test to several microbial time-series and financial time-series and find that most of these systems are not neutral. Our test isolates the covariance structure of neutral competition, thus facilitating further exploration of the nature of asymmetry in the covariance structure of competitive systems. Much like neutrality tests from population genetics that use relative abundance distributions have enabled researchers to scan entire genomes for genes under selection, we anticipate our time-series test will be useful for quick significance tests of neutrality across a range of ecological, economic, and sociological systems for which time-series data are available. Here, future work can use our test to categorize and compare the dynamic fingerprints of particular competitive asymmetries (frequency dependence, volatility smiles, etc) to improve forecasting and management of complex adaptive systems.

  6. Novel Covariance-Based Neutrality Test of Time-Series Data Reveals Asymmetries in Ecological and Economic Systems

    PubMed Central

    Burby, Joshua W.; Lacker, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    Systems as diverse as the interacting species in a community, alleles at a genetic locus, and companies in a market are characterized by competition (over resources, space, capital, etc) and adaptation. Neutral theory, built around the hypothesis that individual performance is independent of group membership, has found utility across the disciplines of ecology, population genetics, and economics, both because of the success of the neutral hypothesis in predicting system properties and because deviations from these predictions provide information about the underlying dynamics. However, most tests of neutrality are weak, based on static system properties such as species-abundance distributions or the number of singletons in a sample. Time-series data provide a window onto a system’s dynamics, and should furnish tests of the neutral hypothesis that are more powerful to detect deviations from neutrality and more informative about to the type of competitive asymmetry that drives the deviation. Here, we present a neutrality test for time-series data. We apply this test to several microbial time-series and financial time-series and find that most of these systems are not neutral. Our test isolates the covariance structure of neutral competition, thus facilitating further exploration of the nature of asymmetry in the covariance structure of competitive systems. Much like neutrality tests from population genetics that use relative abundance distributions have enabled researchers to scan entire genomes for genes under selection, we anticipate our time-series test will be useful for quick significance tests of neutrality across a range of ecological, economic, and sociological systems for which time-series data are available. Future work can use our test to categorize and compare the dynamic fingerprints of particular competitive asymmetries (frequency dependence, volatility smiles, etc) to improve forecasting and management of complex adaptive systems. PMID:27689714

  7. Novel Covariance-Based Neutrality Test of Time-Series Data Reveals Asymmetries in Ecological and Economic Systems.

    PubMed

    Washburne, Alex D; Burby, Joshua W; Lacker, Daniel

    2016-09-01

    Systems as diverse as the interacting species in a community, alleles at a genetic locus, and companies in a market are characterized by competition (over resources, space, capital, etc) and adaptation. Neutral theory, built around the hypothesis that individual performance is independent of group membership, has found utility across the disciplines of ecology, population genetics, and economics, both because of the success of the neutral hypothesis in predicting system properties and because deviations from these predictions provide information about the underlying dynamics. However, most tests of neutrality are weak, based on static system properties such as species-abundance distributions or the number of singletons in a sample. Time-series data provide a window onto a system's dynamics, and should furnish tests of the neutral hypothesis that are more powerful to detect deviations from neutrality and more informative about to the type of competitive asymmetry that drives the deviation. Here, we present a neutrality test for time-series data. We apply this test to several microbial time-series and financial time-series and find that most of these systems are not neutral. Our test isolates the covariance structure of neutral competition, thus facilitating further exploration of the nature of asymmetry in the covariance structure of competitive systems. Much like neutrality tests from population genetics that use relative abundance distributions have enabled researchers to scan entire genomes for genes under selection, we anticipate our time-series test will be useful for quick significance tests of neutrality across a range of ecological, economic, and sociological systems for which time-series data are available. Future work can use our test to categorize and compare the dynamic fingerprints of particular competitive asymmetries (frequency dependence, volatility smiles, etc) to improve forecasting and management of complex adaptive systems.

  8. Reduced oxide soldering activation (ROSA) PWB solderability testing

    SciTech Connect

    Hernandez, C.L.; Hosking, F.M.; Reed, J.; Tench, D.M.; White, J.

    1996-02-01

    The effect of ROSA pretreatment on the solderability of environmentally stressed PWB test coupons was investigated. The PWB surface finish was an electroplated, reflowed solder. Test results demonstrated the ability to recover plated-through-hole fill of steam aged samples with solder after ROSA processing. ROSA offers an alternative method for restoring the solderability of aged PWB surfaces.

  9. Generation of 2,000 breast cancer metabolic landscapes reveals a poor prognosis group with active serotonin production

    PubMed Central

    Leoncikas, Vytautas; Wu, Huihai; Ward, Lara T.; Kierzek, Andrzej M.; Plant, Nick J.

    2016-01-01

    A major roadblock in the effective treatment of cancers is their heterogeneity, whereby multiple molecular landscapes are classified as a single disease. To explore the contribution of cellular metabolism to cancer heterogeneity, we analyse the Metabric dataset, a landmark genomic and transcriptomic study of 2,000 individual breast tumours, in the context of the human genome-scale metabolic network. We create personalized metabolic landscapes for each tumour by exploring sets of active reactions that satisfy constraints derived from human biochemistry and maximize congruency with the Metabric transcriptome data. Classification of the personalized landscapes derived from 997 tumour samples within the Metabric discovery dataset reveals a novel poor prognosis cluster, reproducible in the 995-sample validation dataset. We experimentally follow mechanistic hypotheses resulting from the computational study and establish that active serotonin production is a major metabolic feature of the poor prognosis group. These data support the reconsideration of concomitant serotonin-specific uptake inhibitors treatment during breast cancer chemotherapy. PMID:26813959

  10. Active drumlin field revealed at the margin of Múlajökull, Iceland: a surge-type glacier

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schomacker, A.; Johnson, M. D.; Benediktsson, I.; Ingolfsson, O.; Geiger, A. J.; Ferguson, A.

    2010-12-01

    Recent marginal retreat of Múlajökull, a surge-type, outlet glacier of the Hofsjökull ice cap, central Iceland, has revealed a drumlin field consisting of over 50 drumlins. The drumlins are 90-320 m long, 30-105 m wide, 5-10 m in relief, and composed of multiple beds of till deposited by lodgement and bed deformation. The youngest till layer truncates the older units with an erosion surface that parallels the drumlin form. Thus, the drumlins are built up and formed by a combination of subglacial depositional and erosional processes. Field evidence suggests each till bed to be associated with individual, recent surges. We consider the drumlin field to be active in the sense that the drumlins are shaped by the current glacial regime. The Múlajökull field is the only known active drumlin field and is, therefore, a unique analogue to Pleistocene drumlin fields.

  11. Hypoxia Stress Test Reveals Exaggerated Cardiovascular Effects in Hypertensive Rats after Exposure to the Air Pollutant Acrolein

    EPA Science Inventory

    Exposure to air pollution increases the risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, especially in susceptible populations with cardiovascular disease. Stress tests are useful in assessing cardiovascular risk and manifesting latent effects of exposure. The goal of this study w...

  12. Quantitative Proteomic Analysis Reveals Molecular Adaptations in the Hippocampal Synaptic Active Zone of Chronic Mild Stress-Unsusceptible Rats

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Jian; Liu, Zhao; Yu, Jia; Han, Xin; Fan, Songhua; Shao, Weihua; Chen, Jianjun; Qiao, Rui

    2016-01-01

    Background: While stressful events are recognized as an important cause of major depressive disorder, some individuals exposed to life stressors maintain normal psychological functioning. The molecular mechanism(s) underlying this phenomenon remain unclear. Abnormal transmission and plasticity of hippocampal synapses have been implied to play a key role in the pathoetiology of major depressive disorder. Methods: A chronic mild stress protocol was applied to separate susceptible and unsusceptible rat subpopulations. Proteomic analysis using an isobaric tag for relative and absolute quantitation coupled with tandem mass spectrometry was performed to identify differential proteins in enriched hippocampal synaptic junction preparations. Results: A total of 4318 proteins were quantified, and 89 membrane proteins were present in differential amounts. Of these, SynaptomeDB identified 81 (91%) having a synapse-specific localization. The unbiased profiles identified several candidate proteins within the synaptic junction that may be associated with stress vulnerability or insusceptibility. Subsequent functional categorization revealed that protein systems particularly involved in membrane trafficking at the synaptic active zone exhibited a positive strain as potential molecular adaptations in the unsusceptible rats. Moreover, through STRING and immunoblotting analysis, membrane-associated GTP-bound Rab3a and Munc18-1 appear to coregulate syntaxin-1/SNAP25/VAMP2 assembly at the hippocampal presynaptic active zone of unsusceptible rats, facilitating SNARE-mediated membrane fusion and neurotransmitter release, and may be part of a stress-protection mechanism in actively maintaining an emotional homeostasis. Conclusions: The present results support the concept that there is a range of potential protein adaptations in the hippocampal synaptic active zone of unsusceptible rats, revealing new investigative targets that may contribute to a better understanding of stress

  13. Manufacturing and thermomechanical testing of actively cooled all beryllium high heat flux test pieces

    SciTech Connect

    Vasiliev, N.N.; Sokolov, Yu.A.; Shatalov, G.E.

    1995-09-01

    One of the problems affiliated to ITER high heat flux elements development is a problem of interface of beryllium protection with heat sink routinely made of copper alloys. To get rid of this problem all beryllium elements could be used as heat receivers in places of enhanced thermal loads. In accordance with this objectives four beryllium test pieces of two types have been manufactured in {open_quotes}Institute of Beryllium{close_quotes} for succeeding thermomechanical testing. Two of them were manufactured in accordance with JET team design; they are round {open_quotes}hypervapotron type{close_quotes} test pieces. Another two ones are rectangular test sections with a twisted tape installed inside of the circular channel. Preliminary stress-strain analysis have been performed for both type of the test pieces. Hypervapotrons have been shipped to JET where they were tested on JET test bed. Thermomechanical testing of pieces of the type of {open_quotes}swirl tape inside of tube{close_quotes} have been performed on Kurchatov Institute test bed. Chosen beryllium grade properties, some details of manufacturing, results of preliminary stress-strain analysis and thermomechanical testing of the test pieces {open_quotes}swirl tape inside of tube{close_quotes} type are given in this report.

  14. Reducing contralateral SI activity reveals hindlimb receptive fields in the SI forelimb-stump representation of neonatally amputated rats.

    PubMed

    Pluto, Charles P; Chiaia, Nicolas L; Rhoades, Robert W; Lane, Richard D

    2005-09-01

    In adult rats that sustained forelimb amputation on the day of birth, >30% of multiunit recording sites in the forelimb-stump representation of primary somatosensory cortex (SI) also respond to cutaneous hindlimb stimulation when cortical GABA(A+B) receptors are blocked (GRB). This study examined whether hindlimb receptive fields could also be revealed in forelimb-stump sites by reducing one known source of excitatory input to SI GABAergic neurons, the contralateral SI cortex. Corpus callosum projection neurons connect homotopic SI regions, making excitatory contacts onto pyramidal cells and interneurons. Thus in addition to providing monosynaptic excitation in SI, callosal fibers can produce disynaptic inhibition through excitatory synapses with inhibitory interneurons. Based on the latter of these connections, we hypothesized that inactivating the contralateral (intact) SI forelimb region would "unmask" normally suppressed hindlimb responses by reducing the activity of SI GABAergic neurons. The SI forelimb-stump representation was first mapped under normal conditions and then during GRB to identify stump/hindlimb responsive sites. After GRB had dissipated, the contralateral (intact) SI forelimb region was mapped and reversibly inactivated with injections of 4% lidocaine, and selected forelimb-stump sites were retested. Contralateral SI inactivation revealed hindlimb responses in approximately 60% of sites that were stump/hindlimb responsive during GRB. These findings indicate that activity in the contralateral SI contributes to the suppression of reorganized hindlimb receptive fields in neonatally amputated rats.

  15. In silico Analysis of Combinatorial microRNA Activity Reveals Target Genes and Pathways Associated with Breast Cancer Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Dombkowski, Alan A.; Sultana, Zakia; Craig, Douglas B.; Jamil, Hasan

    2011-01-01

    This is an open access article. Unrestricted non-commercial use is permitted provided the original work is properly cited. Aberrant microRNA activity has been reported in many diseases, and studies often find numerous microRNAs concurrently dysregulated. Most target genes have binding sites for multiple microRNAs, and mounting evidence indicates that it is important to consider their combinatorial effect on target gene repression. A recent study associated the coincident loss of expression of six microRNAs with metastatic potential in breast cancer. Here, we used a new computational method, miR-AT!, to investigate combinatorial activity among this group of microRNAs. We found that the set of transcripts having multiple target sites for these microRNAs was significantly enriched with genes involved in cellular processes commonly perturbed in metastatic tumors: cell cycle regulation, cytoskeleton organization, and cell adhesion. Network analysis revealed numerous target genes upstream of cyclin D1 and c-Myc, indicating that the collective loss of the six microRNAs may have a focal effect on these two key regulatory nodes. A number of genes previously implicated in cancer metastasis are among the predicted combinatorial targets, including TGFB1, ARPC3, and RANKL. In summary, our analysis reveals extensive combinatorial interactions that have notable implications for their potential role in breast cancer metastasis and in therapeutic development. PMID:21552493

  16. Structure-activity relationships for chloro- and nitrophenol toxicity in the pollen tube growth test

    SciTech Connect

    Schueuermann, G.; Somashekar, R.K.; Kristen, U.

    1996-10-01

    Acute toxicity of 10 chlorophenols and 10 nitrophenols with identical substitution patterns is analyzed with the pollen tube growth (PTG) test. Concentration values of 50% growth inhibition (IC50) between 0.1 and 300 mg/L indicate that the absolute sensitivity of this alternative biotest is comparable to conventional aquatic test systems. Analysis of quantitative structure-activity relationships using lipophilicity (log K{sub ow}), acidity (pK{sub a}), and quantum chemical parameters to model intrinsic acidity, solvation interactions, and nucleophilicity reveals substantial differences between the intraseries trends of log IC50. With chlorophenols, a narcotic-type relationship is derived, which, however, shows marked differences in slope and intercept when compared to reference regression equations for polar narcosis. Regression analysis of nitrophenol toxicity suggests interpretation in terms of two modes of action: oxidative uncoupling activity is associated with a pK{sub a} window from 3.8 to 8.5, and more acidic congeners with diortho-substitution show a transition from uncoupling to a narcotic mode of action with decreasing pK{sub a} and log K{sub ow}. Model calculations for phenol nucleophilicity suggest that differences in the phenol readiness for glucuronic acid conjugation as a major phase-II detoxication pathway have no direct influence on acute PTG toxicity of the compounds.

  17. Ibrutinib, a BTK inhibitor used for treatment of lymphoproliferative disorders, eliminates both aeroallergen skin test and basophil activation test reactivity.

    PubMed

    Regan, Jennifer A; Cao, Yun; Dispenza, Melanie C; Ma, Shuo; Gordon, Leo I; Petrich, Adam M; Bochner, Bruce S

    2017-04-04

    Ibrutinib, a Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK) inhibitor, was shown to eliminate skin test reactivity in vivo and IgE-dependent basophil activation testing ex vivo. Blockade of the BTK pathway may represent a novel therapeutic strategy for the effective reduction of allergic reactivity.

  18. Should soil testing services measure soil biological activity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Health of agricultural soils depends largely on conservation management to promote soil organic C accumulation. Total soil organic C changes slowly, but active fractions are more dynamic. A key indicator of healthy soil is potential biological activity, which could be measured rapidly with soil te...

  19. Plutonium recycle test reactor characterization activities and results

    SciTech Connect

    Cornwell, B.C.

    1997-05-01

    Report contains results of PRTR core and associated structures characterization performed in January and February of 1997. Radiation survey data are presented, along with recommendations for stabilization activities before transitioning to a decontamination and decommissioning function. Recommendations are also made about handling the waste generated by the stabilization activities, and actions suggested by the Decontamination and Decommissioning organization.

  20. Biodegradation testing of chemicals with high Henry's constants - Separating mass and effective concentration reveals higher rate constants.

    PubMed

    Birch, Heidi; Andersen, Henrik R; Comber, Mike; Mayer, Philipp

    2017-05-01

    During simulation-type biodegradation tests, volatile chemicals will continuously partition between water phase and headspace. This study addressed how (1) this partitioning affects test results and (2) can be accounted for by combining equilibrium partition and dynamic biodegradation models. An aqueous mixture of 9 (semi)volatile chemicals was first generated using passive dosing and then diluted with environmental surface water producing concentrations in the ng/L to μg/L range. After incubation for 2 h to 4 weeks, automated Headspace Solid Phase Microextraction (HS-SPME) was applied directly on the test systems to measure substrate depletion by biodegradation relatively to abiotic controls. HS-SPME was also applied to determine air to water partitioning ratios. Biodegradation rate constants relating to the chemical in the water phase, kwater, were generally a factor 1 to 11 times higher than biodegradation rate constants relating to the total mass of chemical in the test system, ksystem, with one exceptional factor of 72 times for a long chain alkane. True water phase degradation rate constants were found (i) more appropriate for risk assessment than test system rate constants, (ii) to facilitate extrapolation to other air-water systems and (iii) to be better defined input parameters for aquatic exposure and fate models.

  1. Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Micro Economic Activities in Rome Reveals Patterns of Mixed-Use Urban Evolution.

    PubMed

    Fiasconaro, Alessandro; Strano, Emanuele; Nicosia, Vincenzo; Porta, Sergio; Latora, Vito

    2016-01-01

    Understanding urban growth is one with understanding how society evolves to satisfy the needs of its individuals in sharing a common space and adapting to the territory. We propose here a quantitative analysis of the historical development of a large urban area by investigating the spatial distribution and the age of commercial activities in the whole city of Rome. We find that the age of activities of various categories presents a very interesting double exponential trend, with a transition possibly related to the long-term economical effects determined by the oil crisis of the Seventies. The diversification of commercial categories, studied through various measures of entropy, shows, among other interesting features, a saturating behaviour with the density of activities. Moreover, different couples of commercial categories exhibit over the years a tendency to attract in space. Our results demonstrate that the spatio-temporal distribution of commercial activities can provide important insights on the urbanisation processes at work, revealing specific and non trivial socio-economical dynamics, as the presence of crisis periods and expansion trends, and contributing to the characterisation of the maturity of urban areas.

  2. Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Micro Economic Activities in Rome Reveals Patterns of Mixed-Use Urban Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Fiasconaro, Alessandro; Strano, Emanuele; Nicosia, Vincenzo; Porta, Sergio; Latora, Vito

    2016-01-01

    Understanding urban growth is one with understanding how society evolves to satisfy the needs of its individuals in sharing a common space and adapting to the territory. We propose here a quantitative analysis of the historical development of a large urban area by investigating the spatial distribution and the age of commercial activities in the whole city of Rome. We find that the age of activities of various categories presents a very interesting double exponential trend, with a transition possibly related to the long-term economical effects determined by the oil crisis of the Seventies. The diversification of commercial categories, studied through various measures of entropy, shows, among other interesting features, a saturating behaviour with the density of activities. Moreover, different couples of commercial categories exhibit over the years a tendency to attract in space. Our results demonstrate that the spatio-temporal distribution of commercial activities can provide important insights on the urbanisation processes at work, revealing specific and non trivial socio-economical dynamics, as the presence of crisis periods and expansion trends, and contributing to the characterisation of the maturity of urban areas. PMID:26982028

  3. Plasma inhibitory activity (PIA): a pharmacodynamic assay reveals insights into the basis for cytotoxic response to FLT3 inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Levis, Mark; Brown, Patrick; Smith, B. Douglas; Stine, Adam; Pham, Rosalyn; Stone, Richard; DeAngelo, Daniel; Galinsky, Ilene; Giles, Frank; Estey, Elihu; Kantarjian, Hagop; Cohen, Pamela; Wang, Yanfeng; Roesel, Johannes; Karp, Judith E.; Small, Donald

    2006-01-01

    We have developed a useful surrogate assay for monitoring the efficacy of FLT3 inhibition in patients treated with oral FLT3 inhibitors. The plasma inhibitory activity (PIA) for FLT3 correlates with clinical activity in patients treated with CEP-701 and PKC412. Using the PIA assay, along with in vitro phosphorylation and cytotoxicity assays in leukemia cells, we compared PKC412 and its metabolite, CGP52421, with CEP-701. While both drugs could effectively inhibit FLT3 in vitro, CEP-701 was more cytotoxic to primary samples at comparable levels of FLT3 inhibition. PKC412 appears to be more selective than CEP-701 and therefore less effective at inducing cytotoxicity in primary acute myeloid leukemia (AML) samples in vitro. However, the PKC412 metabolite CGP52421 is less selective than its parent compound, PKC412, and is more cytotoxic against primary blast samples at comparable levels of FLT3 inhibition. The plasma inhibitory activity assay represents a useful correlative tool in the development of small-molecule inhibitors. Our application of this assay has revealed that the metabolite CGP52421 may contribute a significant portion of the antileukemia activity observed in patients receiving oral PKC412. Additionally, our results suggest that nonselectivity may constitute an important component of the cytotoxic effect of FLT3 inhibitors in FLT3-mutant AML. PMID:16857987

  4. Simulating natural light and temperature cycles in the laboratory reveals differential effects on activity/rest rhythm of four Drosophilids.

    PubMed

    Prabhakaran, Priya M; Sheeba, Vasu

    2014-10-01

    Recent studies under semi-natural conditions have revealed various unique features of activity/rest rhythms in Drosophilids that differ from those under standard laboratory conditions. An additional afternoon peak (A-peak) has been reported for Drosophila melanogaster and another species D. malerkotliana while D. ananassae exhibited mostly unimodal diurnal activity. To tease apart the role of light and temperature in mediating these species-specific behaviours of four Drosophilid species D. melanogaster, D. malerkotliana, D. ananassae, and Zaprionus indianus we simulated gradual natural light and/or temperature cycles conditions in laboratory. The pattern observed under semi-natural conditions could be reproduced in the laboratory for all the species under a variety of simulated conditions. D. melanogaster and D. malerkotliana showed similar patterns where as D. ananassae consistently exhibited predominant morning activity under almost all regimes. Z. indianus showed clearly rhythmic activity mostly when temperature cycles were provided. We find that gradually changing light intensities reaching a sufficiently high peak value can elicit A-peak in D. melanogaster, D. malerkotliana, and D. ananassae even at mild ambient temperature. Furthermore, we show that high mid-day temperature could induce A-peak in all species even under constant light conditions suggesting that this A-peak is likely to be a stress response.

  5. Integration of conventional quantitative and phospho-proteomics reveals new elements in activated Jurkat T-cell receptor pathway maintenance.

    PubMed

    Jouy, Florent; Müller, Stephan A; Wagner, Juliane; Otto, Wolfgang; von Bergen, Martin; Tomm, Janina M

    2015-01-01

    Recent years have seen a constant development of tools for the global assessment of phosphoproteins. Here, we outline a concept for integrating approaches for quantitative proteomics and phosphoproteomics. The strategy was applied to the analysis of changes in signalling and protein synthesis occurring after activation of the T-cell receptor (TCR) pathway in a T-cell line (Jurkat cells). For this purpose, peptides were obtained from four biological replicates of activated and control Jurkat T-cells and phosphopeptides enriched via a TiO2-based chromatographic step. Both phosphopeptide-enriched and flow-through fractions were analyzed by LC-MS. We observed 1314 phosphopeptides in the enriched fraction whereas 19 were detected in the flow-through, enabling the quantification of 414 and eight phosphoproteins in the respective fractions. Pathway analysis revealed the differential regulation of many metabolic pathways. Among the quantified proteins, 11 kinases with known TCR-related function were detected. A kinase-substrate database search for the phosphosites identified also confirmed the activity of a further ten kinases. In total, these two approaches provided evidence of 19 unique TCR-related kinases. The combination of phosphoproteomics and conventional quantitative shotgun analysis leads to a more comprehensive assessment of the signalling networks needed for the maintenance of the activated status of Jurkat T-cells.

  6. Interaction of Rio1 Kinase with Toyocamycin Reveals a Conformational Switch That Controls Oligomeric State and Catalytic Activity

    SciTech Connect

    Kiburu, Irene N.; LaRonde-LeBlanc, Nicole

    2012-10-10

    Rio1 kinase is an essential ribosome-processing factor required for proper maturation of 40 S ribosomal subunit. Although its structure is known, several questions regarding its functional remain to be addressed. We report that both Archaeoglobus fulgidus and human Rio1 bind more tightly to an adenosine analog, toyocamycin, than to ATP. Toyocamycin has antibiotic, antiviral and cytotoxic properties, and is known to inhibit ribosome biogenesis, specifically the maturation of 40 S. We determined the X-ray crystal structure of toyocamycin bound to Rio1 at 2.0 {angstrom} and demonstrated that toyocamycin binds in the ATP binding pocket of the protein. Despite this, measured steady state kinetics were inconsistent with strict competitive inhibition by toyocamycin. In analyzing this interaction, we discovered that Rio1 is capable of accessing multiple distinct oligomeric states and that toyocamycin may inhibit Rio1 by stabilizing a less catalytically active oligomer. We also present evidence of substrate inhibition by high concentrations of ATP for both archaeal and human Rio1. Oligomeric state studies show both proteins access a higher order oligomeric state in the presence of ATP. The study revealed that autophosphorylation by Rio1 reduces oligomer formation and promotes monomerization, resulting in the most active species. Taken together, these results suggest the activity of Rio1 may be modulated by regulating its oligomerization properties in a conserved mechanism, identifies the first ribosome processing target of toyocamycin and presents the first small molecule inhibitor of Rio1 kinase activity.

  7. Structural Analysis of Glycine Sarcosine N-methyltransferase from Methanohalophilus portucalensis Reveals Mechanistic Insights into the Regulation of Methyltransferase Activity

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Yi-Ru; Lin, Te-Sheng; Lai, Shu-Jung; Liu, Mu-Sen; Lai, Mei-Chin; Chan, Nei-Li

    2016-01-01

    Methyltransferases play crucial roles in many cellular processes, and various regulatory mechanisms have evolved to control their activities. For methyltransferases involved in biosynthetic pathways, regulation via feedback inhibition is a commonly employed strategy to prevent excessive accumulation of the pathways’ end products. To date, no biosynthetic methyltransferases have been characterized by X-ray crystallography in complex with their corresponding end product. Here, we report the crystal structures of the glycine sarcosine N-methyltransferase from the halophilic archaeon Methanohalophilus portucalensis (MpGSMT), which represents the first structural elucidation of the GSMT methyltransferase family. As the first enzyme in the biosynthetic pathway of the osmoprotectant betaine, MpGSMT catalyzes N-methylation of glycine and sarcosine, and its activity is feedback-inhibited by the end product betaine. A structural analysis revealed that, despite the simultaneous presence of both substrate (sarcosine) and cofactor (S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine; SAH), the enzyme was likely crystallized in an inactive conformation, as additional structural changes are required to complete the active site assembly. Consistent with this interpretation, the bound SAH can be replaced by the methyl donor S-adenosyl-L-methionine without triggering the methylation reaction. Furthermore, the observed conformational state was found to harbor a betaine-binding site, suggesting that betaine may inhibit MpGSMT activity by trapping the enzyme in an inactive form. This work implicates a structural basis by which feedback inhibition of biosynthetic methyltransferases may be achieved. PMID:27934872

  8. But the Scores Don't Show How I Really Function: A Feedback Method to Reveal Cognitive Distortions Regarding Normal Neuropsychological Test Performance.

    PubMed

    Carone, Dominic A

    2017-01-01

    Neuropsychologists commonly provide feedback to patients with a high degree of cognitive complaints in the context of normal neuropsychological test performance. Patients are sometimes not reassured by this feedback because they blame external factors (e.g., the tests are wrong) and do not develop insight about internal factors (e.g., distorted self-perception) that could lead to better understanding about why high symptom reporting is present in the context of normal test results. This article presents the first formal feedback model for neuropsychologists to use with such patients that helps reveal the presence of cognitive distortions that result in high cognitive complaints. The critical elements of this model incorporate self-ratings of neuropsychological test performance, comparing those ratings to actual test performance, and presenting discrepancies to patients in an objective, professional, and respectful manner. Ways in which this feedback model may lead to improved patient outcomes and reductions in healthcare costs are discussed.

  9. Extensive hydrothermal activity revealed by multi-tracer survey in the Wallis and Futuna region (SW Pacific)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konn, C.; Fourré, E.; Jean-Baptiste, P.; Donval, J. P.; Guyader, V.; Birot, D.; Alix, A. S.; Gaillot, A.; Perez, F.; Dapoigny, A.; Pelleter, E.; Resing, J. A.; Charlou, J. L.; Fouquet, Y.

    2016-10-01

    The study area is close to the Wallis and Futuna Islands in the French EEZ. It exists on the western boundary of the fastest tectonic area in the world at the junction of the Lau and North-Fiji basins. At this place, the unstable back-arc accommodates the plate motion in three ways: (i) the north Fiji transform fault, (ii) numerous unstable spreading ridges, and (iii) large areas of recent volcanic activity. This instability creates bountiful opportunity for hydrothermal discharge to occur. Based on geochemical (CH4, TDM, 3He) and geophysical (nephelometry) tracer surveys: (1) no hydrothermal activity could be found on the Futuna Spreading Centre (FSC) which sets the western limit of hydrothermal activity; (2) four distinct hydrothermal active areas were identified: Kulo Lasi Caldera, Amanaki Volcano, Fatu Kapa and Tasi Tulo areas; (3) extensive and diverse hydrothermal manifestations were observed and especially a 2D distribution of the sources. At Kulo Lasi, our data and especially tracer ratios (CH4/3He 50×106 and CH4/TDM 4.5) reveal a transient CH4 input, with elevated levels of CH4 measured in 2010, that had vanished in 2011, most likely caused by an eruptive magmatic event. By contrast at Amanaki, vertical tracer profiles and tracer ratios point to typical seawater/basalt interactions. Fatu Kapa is characterised by a substantial spatial variability of the hydrothermal water column anomalies, most likely due to widespread focused and diffuse hydrothermal discharge in the area. In the Tasi Tulo zone, the hydrothermal signal is characterised by a total lack of turbidity, although other tracer anomalies are in the same range as in nearby Fatu Kapa. The background data set revealed the presence of a Mn and 3He chronic plume due to the extensive and cumulative venting over the entire area. To that respect, we believe that the joined domain composed of our active area and the nearby active area discovered in the East by Lupton et al. (2012) highly contribute to the

  10. Transcriptional profiling of Chinese medicinal formula Si-Wu-Tang on breast cancer cells reveals phytoestrogenic activity

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Si-Wu-Tang (SWT), comprising the combination of four herbs, Paeoniae, Angelicae, Chuanxiong and Rehmanniae, is one of the most popular traditional oriental medicines for women’s diseases. In our previous study, the microarray gene expression profiles of SWT on breast cancer cell line MCF-7 were found similar to the effect of β-estradiol (E2) on MCF-7 cells in the Connectivity Map database. Methods Further data analysis was conducted to find the main similarities and differences between the effects of SWT and E2 on MCF-7 gene expression. The cell proliferation assay on MCF-7 (ER-positive) and MDA-MB-231 (ER-negative) cells were used to examine such estrogenic activity. The estrogenic potency of SWT was further confirmed by estrogen-responsive element (ERE) luciferase reporter assay in MCF-7 cells. Results Many estrogen regulated genes strongly up-regulated by E2 were similarly up-regulated by SWT, e.g., GREB1, PGR and EGR3. Of interest with regard to safety of SWT, the oncogenes MYBL1 and RET were strongly induced by E2 but not by SWT. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis revealed a highly concordant expression change in selected genes with data obtained by microarrays. Further supporting SWT’s estrogenic activity, in MCF-7 but not in MDA-MB-231 cells, SWT stimulated cell growth at lower concentrations (< 3.0 mg/ml), while at high concentrations, it inhibits the growth of both cell lines. The growth inhibitory potency of SWT was significantly higher in MDA-MB-231 than in MCF-7 cells. The SWT-induced cell growth of MCF-7 could be blocked by addition of the estrogen receptor antagonist tamoxifen. In addition, SWT was able to activate the ERE activity at lower concentrations. The herbal components Angelicae, Chuanxiong and Rehmanniae at lower concentrations (< 3.0 mg/ml) also showed growth-inducing and ERE-activating activity in MCF-7 cells. Conclusions These results revealed a new mechanism to support the clinical use of SWT for estrogen related diseases

  11. Structures of BmrR-Drug Complexes Reveal a Rigid Multidrug Binding Pocket And Transcription Activation Through Tyrosine Expulsion

    SciTech Connect

    Newberry, K.J.; Huffman, J.L.; Miller, M.C.; Vazquez-Laslop, N.; Neyfakh, A.A.; Brennan, R.G.

    2009-05-22

    BmrR is a member of the MerR family and a multidrug binding transcription factor that up-regulates the expression of the bmr multidrug efflux transporter gene in response to myriad lipophilic cationic compounds. The structural mechanism by which BmrR binds these chemically and structurally different drugs and subsequently activates transcription is poorly understood. Here, we describe the crystal structures of BmrR bound to rhodamine 6G (R6G) or berberine (Ber) and cognate DNA. These structures reveal each drug stacks against multiple aromatic residues with their positive charges most proximal to the carboxylate group of Glu-253 and that, unlike other multidrug binding pockets, that of BmrR is rigid. Substitution of Glu-253 with either alanine (E253A) or glutamine (E253Q) results in unpredictable binding affinities for R6G, Ber, and tetraphenylphosphonium. Moreover, these drug binding studies reveal that the negative charge of Glu-253 is not important for high affinity binding to Ber and tetraphenylphosphonium but plays a more significant, but unpredictable, role in R6G binding. In vitro transcription data show that E253A and E253Q are constitutively active, and structures of the drug-free E253A-DNA and E253Q-DNA complexes support a transcription activation mechanism requiring the expulsion of Tyr-152 from the multidrug binding pocket. In sum, these data delineate the mechanism by which BmrR binds lipophilic, monovalent cationic compounds and suggest the importance of the redundant negative electrostatic nature of this rigid drug binding pocket that can be used to discriminate against molecules that are not substrates of the Bmr multidrug efflux pump.

  12. Structures of BmrR-drug complexes reveal a rigid multidrug binding pocket and transcription activation through tyrosine expulsion.

    PubMed

    Newberry, Kate J; Huffman, Joy L; Miller, Marshall C; Vazquez-Laslop, Nora; Neyfakh, Alex A; Brennan, Richard G

    2008-09-26

    BmrR is a member of the MerR family and a multidrug binding transcription factor that up-regulates the expression of the bmr multidrug efflux transporter gene in response to myriad lipophilic cationic compounds. The structural mechanism by which BmrR binds these chemically and structurally different drugs and subsequently activates transcription is poorly understood. Here, we describe the crystal structures of BmrR bound to rhodamine 6G (R6G) or berberine (Ber) and cognate DNA. These structures reveal each drug stacks against multiple aromatic residues with their positive charges most proximal to the carboxylate group of Glu-253 and that, unlike other multidrug binding pockets, that of BmrR is rigid. Substitution of Glu-253 with either alanine (E253A) or glutamine (E253Q) results in unpredictable binding affinities for R6G, Ber, and tetraphenylphosphonium. Moreover, these drug binding studies reveal that the negative charge of Glu-253 is not important for high affinity binding to Ber and tetraphenylphosphonium but plays a more significant, but unpredictable, role in R6G binding. In vitro transcription data show that E253A and E253Q are constitutively active, and structures of the drug-free E253A-DNA and E253Q-DNA complexes support a transcription activation mechanism requiring the expulsion of Tyr-152 from the multidrug binding pocket. In sum, these data delineate the mechanism by which BmrR binds lipophilic, monovalent cationic compounds and suggest the importance of the redundant negative electrostatic nature of this rigid drug binding pocket that can be used to discriminate against molecules that are not substrates of the Bmr multidrug efflux pump.

  13. Risk-informed inservice test activities at the NRC

    SciTech Connect

    Fischer, D.; Cheok, M.; Hsia, A.

    1996-12-01

    The operational readiness of certain safety-related components is vital to the safe operation of nuclear power plants. Inservice testing (IST) is one of the mechanisms used by licensees to ensure this readiness. In the past, the type and frequency of IST have been based on the collective best judgment of the NRC and industry in an ASME Code consensus process and NRC rulemaking process. Furthermore, IST requirements have not explicitly considered unique component and system designs and contribution to overall plant risk. Because of the general nature of ASME Code test requirements and non-reliance on risk estimates, current IST requirements may not adequately emphasize testing those components that are most important to safety and may overly emphasize testing of less safety significant components. Nuclear power plant licensees are currently interested in optimizing testing by applying resources in more safety significant areas and, where appropriate, reducing measures in less safety-significant areas. They are interested in maintaining system availability and reducing overall maintenance costs in ways that do not adversely affect safety. The NRC has been interested in using probabilistic, as an adjunct to deterministic, techniques to help define the scope, type and frequency of IST. The development of risk-informed IST programs has the potential to optimize the use of NRC and industry resources without adverse affect on safety.

  14. Deep Borehole Field Test Research Activities at LBNL

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, Patrick; Tsang, Chin-Fu; Kneafsey, Timothy; Borglin, Sharon; Piceno, Yvette; Andersen, Gary; Nakagawa, Seiji; Nihei, Kurt; Rutqvist, Jonny; Doughty, Christine; Reagan, Matthew

    2016-08-19

    The goal of the U.S. Department of Energy Used Fuel Disposition’s (UFD) Deep Borehole Field Test is to drill two 5 km large-diameter boreholes: a characterization borehole with a bottom-hole diameter of 8.5 inches and a field test borehole with a bottom-hole diameter of 17 inches. These boreholes will be used to demonstrate the ability to drill such holes in crystalline rocks, effectively characterize the bedrock repository system using geophysical, geochemical, and hydrological techniques, and emplace and retrieve test waste packages. These studies will be used to test the deep borehole disposal concept, which requires a hydrologically isolated environment characterized by low permeability, stable fluid density, reducing fluid chemistry conditions, and an effective borehole seal. During FY16, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory scientists conducted a number of research studies to support the UFD Deep Borehole Field Test effort. This work included providing supporting data for the Los Alamos National Laboratory geologic framework model for the proposed deep borehole site, conducting an analog study using an extensive suite of geoscience data and samples from a deep (2.5 km) research borehole in Sweden, conducting laboratory experiments and coupled process modeling related to borehole seals, and developing a suite of potential techniques that could be applied to the characterization and monitoring of the deep borehole environment. The results of these studies are presented in this report.

  15. Solar Energy Education. Home economics: student activities. Field test edition

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1981-03-01

    A view of solar energy from the standpoint of home economics is taken in this book of activities. Students are provided information on solar energy resources while performing these classroom activities. Instructions for the construction of a solar food dryer and a solar cooker are provided. Topics for study include window treatments, clothing, the history of solar energy, vitamins from the sun, and how to choose the correct solar home. (BCS)

  16. 21 CFR 864.7140 - Activated whole blood clotting time tests.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Activated whole blood clotting time tests. 864....7140 Activated whole blood clotting time tests. (a) Identification. An activated whole blood clotting... pulmonary embolism by measuring the coagulation time of whole blood. (b) Classification. Class...

  17. 21 CFR 864.7140 - Activated whole blood clotting time tests.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Activated whole blood clotting time tests. 864....7140 Activated whole blood clotting time tests. (a) Identification. An activated whole blood clotting... pulmonary embolism by measuring the coagulation time of whole blood. (b) Classification. Class...

  18. 21 CFR 864.7140 - Activated whole blood clotting time tests.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Activated whole blood clotting time tests. 864....7140 Activated whole blood clotting time tests. (a) Identification. An activated whole blood clotting... pulmonary embolism by measuring the coagulation time of whole blood. (b) Classification. Class...

  19. 21 CFR 864.7140 - Activated whole blood clotting time tests.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Activated whole blood clotting time tests. 864....7140 Activated whole blood clotting time tests. (a) Identification. An activated whole blood clotting... pulmonary embolism by measuring the coagulation time of whole blood. (b) Classification. Class...

  20. 21 CFR 864.7140 - Activated whole blood clotting time tests.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 21 Food and Drugs 8 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Activated whole blood clotting time tests. 864....7140 Activated whole blood clotting time tests. (a) Identification. An activated whole blood clotting... pulmonary embolism by measuring the coagulation time of whole blood. (b) Classification. Class...