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Sample records for additional biologically relevant

  1. Making Plant Biology Curricula Relevant.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hershey, David R.

    1992-01-01

    Reviews rationale, purposes, challenges, and relevance of hands-on, plant biology curricula that have been developed in response to the limited use of plants in biology education. Discusses methods to maintain both instructional rigor and student interest in the following topics: cut flowers, container-growing media, fertilizers, hydroponics,…

  2. Dose addition models based on biologically-relevant reductions in fetal testosterone accurately predict postnatal reproductive tract alterations by a phthalate mixture in rats

    EPA Science Inventory

    Challenges in cumulative risk assessment of anti-androgenic phthalate mixtures include a lack of data on all the individual phthalates and difficulty determining the biological relevance of reduction in fetal testosterone (T) on postnatal development. The objectives of the curren...

  3. [Biologically active food additives].

    PubMed

    Velichko, M A; Shevchenko, V P

    1998-07-01

    More than half out of 40 projects for the medical science development by the year of 2000 have been connected with the bio-active edible additives that are called "the food of XXI century", non-pharmacological means for many diseases. Most of these additives--nutricevtics and parapharmacevtics--are intended for the enrichment of food rations for the sick or healthy people. The ecologicaly safest and most effective are combined domestic adaptogens with immuno-modulating and antioxidating action that give anabolic and stimulating effect,--"leveton", "phytoton" and "adapton". The MKTs-229 tablets are residue discharge means. For atherosclerosis and general adiposis they recommend "tsar tablets" and "aiconol (ikhtien)"--on the base of cod-liver oil or "splat" made out of seaweed (algae). All these preparations have been clinically tested and received hygiene certificates from the Institute of Dietology of the Russian Academy of Medical Science. PMID:9752776

  4. Biology relevant to space radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Fry, R.J.M.

    1996-08-01

    The biological effects of the radiations to which mankind on earth are exposed are becoming known with an increasing degree of detail. This knowledge is the basis of the estimates of risk that, in turn, fosters a comprehensive and evolving radiation protection system. The substantial body of information has been, and is being, applied to questions about the biological effects of radiation is space and the associated risk estimates. The purpose of this paper is not to recount all the biological effect of radiation but to concentrate on those that may occur as a result from exposure to the radiations encountered in space. In general, the biological effects of radiation in space are the same as those on earth. However, the evidence that the effects on certain tissues by the heaviest-charged particles can be interpreted on the basis of our knowledge about other high-LET radiation is equivocal. This specific question will be discussed in greater detail later. It is important to point out the that there are only limited data about the effects on humans of two components of the radiations in space, namely protons and heavy ions. Thus predictions of effects on space crews are based on experimental systems exposed on earth at rates and fluences that are higher than those in space and one the effects of gamma or x rays with estimates of the equivalent doses using quality factors.

  5. Biology relevant to space radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Fry, R.J.M.

    1997-04-30

    There are only very limited data on the health effects to humans from the two major components of the radiations in space, namely protons and heavy ions. As a result, predictions of the accompanying effects must be based either on (1) data generated through studies of experimental systems exposed on earth at rates and fluences higher than those in space, or (2) extrapolations from studies of gamma and x rays. Better information is needed about the doses, dose rates, and the energy and LET spectra of the radiations at the organ level that are anticipated to be encountered during extended space missions. In particular, there is a need for better estimates of the relationship between radiation quality and biological effects. In the case of deterministic effects, it is the threshold that is important. The possibility of the occurrence of a large solar particle event (SPE) requires that such effects be considered during extended space missions. Analyses suggest, however, that it is feasible to provide sufficient shielding so as to reduce such effects to acceptable levels, particularly if the dose rates can be limited. If these analyses prove correct, the primary biological risks will be the stochastic effects (latent cancer induction). The contribution of one large SPE to the risk of stochastic effects while undesirable will not be large in comparison to the potential total dose on a mission of long duration.

  6. Biologically Relevant Glycopeptides: Synthesis and Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, Clay S.; Payne, Richard J.; Koeller, Kathryn M.; Wong, Chi-Huey

    Over the past two decades interest in glycopeptides and glycoproteins has intensified, due in part to the development of new and efficient methods for the synthesis of these compounds. This includes a number of chemical and enzymatic techniques for incorporating glycosylation onto the peptide backbone as well as the introduction of powerful peptide ligation methods for the construction of glycoproteins. This review discusses these methods with a special emphasis on biologically relevant glycopeptides and glycoproteins. This includes the development of a number of antigens which hold promise as potential vaccines for HIV, cancer, or a host of other clinically important diseases. In addition the development of new antibiotics aimed at overcoming the problem of resistance will be discussed. Finally, chemical and enzymatic methods for the construction of glycopeptide mimetics will be described.

  7. Capillary electrochromatography of biologically relevant flavonoids.

    PubMed

    Stöggl, Wolfgang M; Huck, Christian W; Stecher, Günther; Bonn, Günther K

    2006-02-01

    Flavonoids were separated utilizing CEC technique. Baseline separation of biologically relevant flavonoids was obtained using a 100 microm ID fused-silica capillary filled with 3 microm Silica-C18 material and an optimized mobile phase comprising of 20 mM Tris-HCl (pH 6.5), ACN and water at a ratio of 10/40/50 v/v/v. Separations were carried out at 25 kV and a column temperature of 25 degrees C. The influence of relevant parameters for the CEC separation, such as buffer concentration, pH, separation voltage, and ACN concentration, was investigated and optimized. Dependencies of the electroendoosmotic flow (EOF) on these parameters and effects on the resolution of the analytes were studied. During analyses the solvents used for dissolving the samples turned out to have significant effects on the separation of flavonoids. The optimized system was then successfully used for the separation of the flavonoids epicatechin, myricetin, quercetin, naringenin, and hesperetin. CEC turned out to be a useful complementary tool for the economic analysis of flavonoids in addition to common HPLC, muHPLC, and CE methodologies. This method can be used for real applications in phytomics. PMID:16411273

  8. Mammalian lipoxygenases and their biological relevance

    PubMed Central

    Kuhn, Hartmut; Banthiya, Swathi; van Leyen, Klaus

    2015-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) form a heterogeneous class of lipid peroxidizing enzymes, which have been implicated in cell proliferation and differentiation but also in the pathogenesis of various diseases with major public health relevance. As other fatty acid dioxygenases LOX oxidize polyunsaturated fatty acids to their corresponding hydroperoxy derivatives, which are further transformed to bioactive lipid mediators (eicosanoids and related substances). On the other hand, lipoxygenases are key players in regulation of the cellular redox homeostasis, which is an important element in gene expression regulation. Although the first mammalian lipoxygenases were discovered 40 years ago and although the enzymes have been well characterized with respect to their structural and functional properties the biological roles of the different lipoxygenase isoforms are not completely understood. This review is aimed at summarizing the current knowledge on the physiological roles of different mammalian LOX-isoforms and their patho-physiological function in inflammatory, metabolic, hyperproliferative, neurodegenerative and infectious disorders. PMID:25316652

  9. Teaching Secondary School Biology for Social Relevance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meyer, G. Rex; And Others

    Since the 1960's biology teaching in secondary schools has been transformed from a formal approach reflecting the structure of the discipline and mirroring the concerns of the scientific community to a broad-based approach reflecting the concerns of society as a whole. The aim of biology education today is to heighten awareness, improve students'…

  10. Future development of biologically relevant dosimetry.

    PubMed

    Palmans, H; Rabus, H; Belchior, A L; Bug, M U; Galer, S; Giesen, U; Gonon, G; Gruel, G; Hilgers, G; Moro, D; Nettelbeck, H; Pinto, M; Pola, A; Pszona, S; Schettino, G; Sharpe, P H G; Teles, P; Villagrasa, C; Wilkens, J J

    2015-01-01

    Proton and ion beams are radiotherapy modalities of increasing importance and interest. Because of the different biological dose response of these radiations as compared with high-energy photon beams, the current approach of treatment prescription is based on the product of the absorbed dose to water and a biological weighting factor, but this is found to be insufficient for providing a generic method to quantify the biological outcome of radiation. It is therefore suggested to define new dosimetric quantities that allow a transparent separation of the physical processes from the biological ones. Given the complexity of the initiation and occurrence of biological processes on various time and length scales, and given that neither microdosimetry nor nanodosimetry on their own can fully describe the biological effects as a function of the distribution of energy deposition or ionization, a multiscale approach is needed to lay the foundation for the aforementioned new physical quantities relating track structure to relative biological effectiveness in proton and ion beam therapy. This article reviews the state-of-the-art microdosimetry, nanodosimetry, track structure simulations, quantification of reactive species, reference radiobiological data, cross-section data and multiscale models of biological response in the context of realizing the new quantities. It also introduces the European metrology project, Biologically Weighted Quantities in Radiotherapy, which aims to investigate the feasibility of establishing a multiscale model as the basis of the new quantities. A tentative generic expression of how the weighting of physical quantities at different length scales could be carried out is presented. PMID:25257709

  11. Additive manufacturing of biologically-inspired materials.

    PubMed

    Studart, André R

    2016-01-21

    Additive manufacturing (AM) technologies offer an attractive pathway towards the fabrication of functional materials featuring complex heterogeneous architectures inspired by biological systems. In this paper, recent research on the use of AM approaches to program the local chemical composition, structure and properties of biologically-inspired materials is reviewed. A variety of structural motifs found in biological composites have been successfully emulated in synthetic systems using inkjet-based, direct-writing, stereolithography and slip casting technologies. The replication in synthetic systems of design principles underlying such structural motifs has enabled the fabrication of lightweight cellular materials, strong and tough composites, soft robots and autonomously shaping structures with unprecedented properties and functionalities. Pushing the current limits of AM technologies in future research should bring us closer to the manufacturing capabilities of living organisms, opening the way for the digital fabrication of advanced materials with superior performance, lower environmental impact and new functionalities. PMID:26750617

  12. Characterization of Nanoparticle Aggregation in Biologically Relevant Fluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McEnnis, Kathleen; Lahann, Joerg

    Nanoparticles (NPs) are often studied as drug delivery vehicles, but little is known about their behavior in blood once injected into animal models. If the NPs aggregate in blood, they will be shunted to the liver or spleen instead of reaching the intended target. The use of animals for these experiments is costly and raises ethical questions. Typically dynamic light scattering (DLS) is used to analyze aggregation behavior, but DLS cannot be used because the components of blood also scatter light. As an alternative, a method of analyzing NPs in biologically relevant fluids such as blood plasma has been developed using nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA) with fluorescent filters. In this work, NTA was used to analyze the aggregation behavior of fluorescent polystyrene NPs with different surface modifications in blood plasma. It was expected that different surface chemistries on the particles will change the aggregation behavior. The effect of the surface modifications was investigated by quantifying the percentage of NPs in aggregates after addition to blood plasma. The use of this characterization method will allow for better understanding of particle behavior in the body, and potential problems, specifically aggregation, can be addressed before investing in in vivo studies.

  13. The Biological Relevance of Artificial Life: Lessons from Artificial Intelligence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colombano, Silvano

    2000-01-01

    There is no fundamental reason why A-life couldn't simply be a branch of computer science that deals with algorithms that are inspired by, or emulate biological phenomena. However, if these are the limits we place on this field, we miss the opportunity to help advance Theoretical Biology and to contribute to a deeper understanding of the nature of life. The history of Artificial Intelligence provides a good example, in that early interest in the nature of cognition quickly was lost to the process of building tools, such as "expert systems" that, were certainly useful, but provided little insight in the nature of cognition. Based on this lesson, I will discuss criteria for increasing the biological relevance of A-life and the probability that this field may provide a theoretical foundation for Biology.

  14. FireDB: a compendium of biological and pharmacologically relevant ligands.

    PubMed

    Maietta, Paolo; Lopez, Gonzalo; Carro, Angel; Pingilley, Benjamin J; Leon, Leticia G; Valencia, Alfonso; Tress, Michael L

    2014-01-01

    FireDB (http://firedb.bioinfo.cnio.es) is a curated inventory of catalytic and biologically relevant small ligand-binding residues culled from the protein structures in the Protein Data Bank. Here we present the important new additions since the publication of FireDB in 2007. The database now contains an extensive list of manually curated biologically relevant compounds. Biologically relevant compounds are informative because of their role in protein function, but they are only a small fraction of the entire ligand set. For the remaining ligands, the FireDB provides cross-references to the annotations from publicly available biological, chemical and pharmacological compound databases. FireDB now has external references for 95% of contacting small ligands, making FireDB a more complete database and providing the scientific community with easy access to the pharmacological annotations of PDB ligands. In addition to the manual curation of ligands, FireDB also provides insights into the biological relevance of individual binding sites. Here, biological relevance is calculated from the multiple sequence alignments of related binding sites that are generated from all-against-all comparison of each FireDB binding site. The database can be accessed by RESTful web services and is available for download via MySQL. PMID:24243844

  15. Behavior of nanoceria in biologically-relevant environments

    SciTech Connect

    Kumar, Amit; Das, Soumen; Munusamy, Prabhakaran; Self, William; Baer, Donald R.; Sayle, Dean C.; Seal, Sudipta

    2014-09-08

    Cerium oxide nanoparticles (CNPs) have gained a considerable attention in biological research due to their anti-oxidant like behaviour and regenerative nature. The current literature on CNPs reports many successful attempts on harnessing the beneficial therapeutic properties in biology. However studies have also shown toxicity effect with some types of CNPs. This review discusses issues associated with the behaviours of CNPs in biological systems and identifies key knowledge gaps. We explore how salient physicochemical properties (size, surface chemistry, surface stabilizers) contribute to the potential positive and negative aspects of nanoceria in biological systems. Based on variations of results reported in the literature, important issues need to be addressed. Are we really studying the same particles with slight variations in size and physicochemical properties or do the particles being examined have fundamentally different behaviours? Are the variations observed in the result of differences in the initial properties of the particles or the results of downstream effects that emerge as the particles are prepared for specific studies and they interact with biological or other environmental moieties? How should particles be appropriately prepared for relevant environmental/toxicology/safety studies? It is useful to recognize that nanoparticles encompass some of the same complexities and variability associated with biological components

  16. Hands-on-Entropy, Energy Balance with Biological Relevance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reeves, Mark

    2015-03-01

    Entropy changes underlie the physics that dominates biological interactions. Indeed, introductory biology courses often begin with an exploration of the qualities of water that are important to living systems. However, one idea that is not explicitly addressed in most introductory physics or biology textbooks is important contribution of the entropy in driving fundamental biological processes towards equilibrium. From diffusion to cell-membrane formation, to electrostatic binding in protein folding, to the functioning of nerve cells, entropic effects often act to counterbalance deterministic forces such as electrostatic attraction and in so doing, allow for effective molecular signaling. A small group of biology, biophysics and computer science faculty have worked together for the past five years to develop curricular modules (based on SCALEUP pedagogy). This has enabled students to create models of stochastic and deterministic processes. Our students are first-year engineering and science students in the calculus-based physics course and they are not expected to know biology beyond the high-school level. In our class, they learn to reduce complex biological processes and structures in order model them mathematically to account for both deterministic and probabilistic processes. The students test these models in simulations and in laboratory experiments that are biologically relevant such as diffusion, ionic transport, and ligand-receptor binding. Moreover, the students confront random forces and traditional forces in problems, simulations, and in laboratory exploration throughout the year-long course as they move from traditional kinematics through thermodynamics to electrostatic interactions. This talk will present a number of these exercises, with particular focus on the hands-on experiments done by the students, and will give examples of the tangible material that our students work with throughout the two-semester sequence of their course on introductory

  17. The allosteric modulation of lipases and its possible biological relevance

    PubMed Central

    Köhler, Jens; Wünsch, Bernhard

    2007-01-01

    Background During the development of an enantioselective synthesis using the lipase from Mucor miehei an unusual reaction course was observed, which was analyzed precisely. For the first time an allosteric modulation of a lipase changing its selectivity was shown. Theory Considering the biological relevance of the discovered regulation mechanism we developed a theory that describes the regulation of energy homeostasis and fat metabolism. Conclusion This theory represents a new approach to explain the cause of the metabolic syndrome and provides an innovative basis for further research activity. PMID:17825093

  18. Density Functional Theory of Biologically Relevant Metal Centers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siegbahn, Per E. M.; Blomberg, Margareta R. A.

    1999-10-01

    Recent applications of density functional theory to biologically relevant metal centers are reviewed. The emphasis is on reaction mechanisms, structures, and modeling. The accuracy of different functionals is discussed for standard benchmark tests of first- and second-row molecules and for transition metal systems. Modeling aspects of the protein metal complexes are discussed regarding both the size of the model being treated quantum mechanically and the treatment of the protein surrounding it. To illustrate the effects, structures computed without the effects of the protein are compared with experimental structures from enzymes, and results from simple dielectric models of the protein for electron transfer processes are described. The choice of spin state is discussed for multimetal complexes. Examples of mechanisms studied recently by density functional theory are described, such as O2 and methane activation in methane monooxygenase and O2 formation in photosystem II.

  19. Behavioural biology: an effective and relevant conservation tool.

    PubMed

    Buchholz, Richard

    2007-08-01

    'Conservation behaviour' is a young discipline that investigates how proximate and ultimate aspects of the behaviour of an animal can be of value in preventing the loss of biodiversity. Rumours of its demise are unfounded. Conservation behaviour is quickly building a capacity to positively influence environmental decision making. The theoretical framework used by animal behaviourists is uniquely valuable to elucidating integrative solutions to human-wildlife conflicts, efforts to reintroduce endangered species and reducing the deleterious effects of ecotourism. Conservation behaviourists must join with other scientists under the multidisciplinary umbrella of conservation biology without giving up on their focus: the mechanisms, development, function and evolutionary history of individual differences in behaviour. Conservation behaviour is an increasingly relevant tool in the preservation of nature. PMID:17590477

  20. Biclustering Methods: Biological Relevance and Application in Gene Expression Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Oghabian, Ali; Kilpinen, Sami; Hautaniemi, Sampsa; Czeizler, Elena

    2014-01-01

    DNA microarray technologies are used extensively to profile the expression levels of thousands of genes under various conditions, yielding extremely large data-matrices. Thus, analyzing this information and extracting biologically relevant knowledge becomes a considerable challenge. A classical approach for tackling this challenge is to use clustering (also known as one-way clustering) methods where genes (or respectively samples) are grouped together based on the similarity of their expression profiles across the set of all samples (or respectively genes). An alternative approach is to develop biclustering methods to identify local patterns in the data. These methods extract subgroups of genes that are co-expressed across only a subset of samples and may feature important biological or medical implications. In this study we evaluate 13 biclustering and 2 clustering (k-means and hierarchical) methods. We use several approaches to compare their performance on two real gene expression data sets. For this purpose we apply four evaluation measures in our analysis: (1) we examine how well the considered (bi)clustering methods differentiate various sample types; (2) we evaluate how well the groups of genes discovered by the (bi)clustering methods are annotated with similar Gene Ontology categories; (3) we evaluate the capability of the methods to differentiate genes that are known to be specific to the particular sample types we study and (4) we compare the running time of the algorithms. In the end, we conclude that as long as the samples are well defined and annotated, the contamination of the samples is limited, and the samples are well replicated, biclustering methods such as Plaid and SAMBA are useful for discovering relevant subsets of genes and samples. PMID:24651574

  1. Biclustering methods: biological relevance and application in gene expression analysis.

    PubMed

    Oghabian, Ali; Kilpinen, Sami; Hautaniemi, Sampsa; Czeizler, Elena

    2014-01-01

    DNA microarray technologies are used extensively to profile the expression levels of thousands of genes under various conditions, yielding extremely large data-matrices. Thus, analyzing this information and extracting biologically relevant knowledge becomes a considerable challenge. A classical approach for tackling this challenge is to use clustering (also known as one-way clustering) methods where genes (or respectively samples) are grouped together based on the similarity of their expression profiles across the set of all samples (or respectively genes). An alternative approach is to develop biclustering methods to identify local patterns in the data. These methods extract subgroups of genes that are co-expressed across only a subset of samples and may feature important biological or medical implications. In this study we evaluate 13 biclustering and 2 clustering (k-means and hierarchical) methods. We use several approaches to compare their performance on two real gene expression data sets. For this purpose we apply four evaluation measures in our analysis: (1) we examine how well the considered (bi)clustering methods differentiate various sample types; (2) we evaluate how well the groups of genes discovered by the (bi)clustering methods are annotated with similar Gene Ontology categories; (3) we evaluate the capability of the methods to differentiate genes that are known to be specific to the particular sample types we study and (4) we compare the running time of the algorithms. In the end, we conclude that as long as the samples are well defined and annotated, the contamination of the samples is limited, and the samples are well replicated, biclustering methods such as Plaid and SAMBA are useful for discovering relevant subsets of genes and samples. PMID:24651574

  2. Identifying Biologically Relevant Cues in the Hydrologic Regime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lovellford, R. M.; Flitcroft, R.; Santelmann, M. V.; Grant, G. E.; Safeeq, M.; Lewis, S.

    2012-12-01

    Seasonal variation in hydrologic discharge and temperature defines the availability, connectivity, and quality of lentic habitats. Native aquatic species are adapted to local hydrologic regimes , eg. magnitudes and rates of change . In recent decades, biologically relevant hydrologic conditions have been identified that are necessary to maintain habitat conditions for aquatic obligate species. Another element of hydrologic regimes important to aquatic species are the cues that inform individuals of seasonal changes that precipitate important physiological or behavioral alterations. There is a need for hydrologists, biologists, and ecologists, to define biologically significant cues within the hydrologic regime. Coho salmon (Onchorhynchus kisutch), an anadromous species of Pacific salmon, offers an example of sensitivity to environmental cues. Examinations of the run-timing of mature adult coho salmon on the North Umpqua River, OR, indicate that migration timing coincides with decreasing fall water temperatures prior to increasing winter discharge. For this species, adults leave the ocean ready to spawn. Adults need to spawn in small headwater streams prior to the onset of intense storm conditions that prohibit effective deposition or fertilization of eggs in redds (salmon nests).Therefore, the timing of spawning must be carefully executed. Understanding the cues that trigger specific behaviors gives insight to the processes that provide ecosystem stability and flexibility over time. Improved understanding of these cues may help us protect freshwater ecosystems and improve management for endangered species.

  3. Biological and clinical relevance of stem cells in pancreatic adenocarcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Rasheed, Zeshaan A; Matsui, William

    2013-01-01

    Cancer stem cells (CSC) have been identified in a growing number of human malignancies. CSC are functionally defined by their ability to self-renew and recapitulate tumors in the ectopic setting, and a growing number of studies have shown that they display other functional characteristics, such as invasion and drug resistance. These unique functional properties implicate a role for CSC in clinical consequences, such as initial tumor formation, relapse following treatment, metastasis, and resistance, suggesting they are a major factor in directing clinical outcomes. Pancreatic adenocarcinoma is a highly-aggressive disease with a propensity for early metastasis and drug resistance. Tumorigenic pancreatic cancer cells have been identified using the cell surface antigens CD44, CD24, and CD133, as well as the high expression of aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH). In vitro and in vivo studies have shown that ALDH- and CD133-expressing pancreatic CSC have a greater propensity for metastasis, and ALDH-expressing CSC have been shown to be resistant to conventional chemotherapy. In clinical samples from patients with resected pancreatic adenocarcinoma, the presence of ALDH-expressing CSC was associated with worse overall survival. The development of CSC-targeting therapies might be important in changing the clinical outcomes of patients with this disease, and others and we have begun to identify novel compounds that block CSC function. This review will discuss the biological and clinical relevance of CSC in pancreatic cancer, and will discuss novel therapeutic strategies to target them. PMID:22320910

  4. What Is the Biological and Clinical Relevance of Fibrin?

    PubMed

    Litvinov, Rustem I; Weisel, John W

    2016-06-01

    As our knowledge of the structure and functions of fibrinogen and fibrin has increased tremendously, several key findings have given some people a superficial impression that the biological and clinical significance of these clotting proteins may be less than earlier thought. Most strikingly, studies of fibrinogen knockout mice demonstrated that many of these mice survive to weaning and beyond, suggesting that fibrin(ogen) may not be entirely necessary. Humans with afibrinogenemia also survive. Furthermore, in recent years, the major emphasis in the treatment of arterial thrombosis has been on inhibition of platelets, rather than fibrin. In contrast to the initially apparent conclusions from these results, it has become increasingly clear that fibrin is essential for hemostasis; is a key factor in thrombosis; and plays an important biological role in infection, inflammation, immunology, and wound healing. In addition, fibrinogen replacement therapy has become a preferred, major treatment for severe bleeding in trauma and surgery. Finally, fibrin is a unique biomaterial and is used as a sealant or glue, a matrix for cells, a scaffold for tissue engineering, and a carrier and/or a vector for targeted drug delivery. PMID:27056152

  5. Chiral alkynylcarbinols from marine sponges: asymmetric synthesis and biological relevance.

    PubMed

    Listunov, Dymytrii; Maraval, Valérie; Chauvin, Remi; Génisson, Yves

    2015-01-01

    Covering: up to March 2014. Previous review on the topic: B. W. Gung, C. R. Chim., 2009, 12, 489-505. Chiral α-functional lipidic propargylic alcohols extracted from marine sponges, in particular of the pacific genus Petrosia, constitute a class of acetylenic natural products exhibiting remarkable in vitro biological activities, especially anti-tumoral cytotoxicity. These properties, associated to functionalities that are uncommon among natural products, have prompted recent projects on asymmetric total synthesis. On the basis of a three-sector structural typology, three main sub-types of secondary alkynylcarbinols (with either alkyl, alkenyl, or alkynyl as the second substituent) can be identified as the minimal pharmacophoric units. Selected natural products containing these functionalities have been targeted using previously known or on purpose-designed procedures, where the stereo-determining step can be: (i) a C-C bond forming reaction (e.g. the Zn-mediated addition of alkynyl nucleophiles to aldehydes in the presence of chiral aminoalcohols), (ii) a functional layout (e.g. the asymmetric organo- or metallo-catalytic reduction of ynones), or (iii) an enantiomeric resolution (e.g. a lipase-mediated kinetic resolution via acetylation). The promising medicinal importance of these targets is finally surveyed, and future investigation prospects are proposed, such as: (i) further total synthesis of known or future extraction products; (ii) the synthesis of non-natural analogues, with simpler lipophilic environments of the alkynylcarbinol-based pharmacophoric units; (iii) the variation and optimization of both the pharmacophoric units and their lipophilic environment; and (iv) investigations into the biological mode of action of these unique structures. PMID:25275665

  6. Making developmental biology relevant to undergraduates in an era of economic rationalism in Australia.

    PubMed

    Key, Brian; Nurcombe, Victor

    2003-01-01

    This report describes the road map we followed at our university to accommodate three main factors: financial pressure within the university system; desire to enhance the learning experience of undergraduates; and motivation to increase the prominence of the discipline of developmental biology in our university. We engineered a novel, multi-year undergraduate developmental biology program which was "student-oriented," ensuring that students were continually exposed to the underlying principles and philosophy of this discipline throughout their undergraduate career. Among its key features are introductory lectures in core courses in the first year, which emphasize the relevance of developmental biology to tissue engineering, reproductive medicine, therapeutic approaches in medicine, agriculture and aquaculture. State-of-the-art animated computer graphics and images of high visual impact are also used. In addition, students are streamed into the developmental biology track in the second year, using courses like human embryology and courses shared with cell biology, which include practicals based on modern experimental approaches. Finally, fully dedicated third-year courses in developmental biology are undertaken in conjunction with stand-alone practical courses where students experiencefirst-hand work in a research laboratory. Our philosophy is a "cradle-to-grave" approach to the education of undergraduates so as to prepare highly motivated, enthusiastic and well-educated developmental biologists for entry into graduate programs and ultimately post-doctoral research. PMID:12705657

  7. Population distribution models: species distributions are better modeled using biologically relevant data partitions

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Predicting the geographic distribution of widespread species through modeling is problematic for several reasons including high rates of omission errors. One potential source of error for modeling widespread species is that subspecies and/or races of species are frequently pooled for analyses, which may mask biologically relevant spatial variation within the distribution of a single widespread species. We contrast a presence-only maximum entropy model for the widely distributed oldfield mouse (Peromyscus polionotus) that includes all available presence locations for this species, with two composite maximum entropy models. The composite models either subdivided the total species distribution into four geographic quadrants or by fifteen subspecies to capture spatially relevant variation in P. polionotus distributions. Results Despite high Area Under the ROC Curve (AUC) values for all models, the composite species distribution model of P. polionotus generated from individual subspecies models represented the known distribution of the species much better than did the models produced by partitioning data into geographic quadrants or modeling the whole species as a single unit. Conclusions Because the AUC values failed to describe the differences in the predictability of the three modeling strategies, we suggest using omission curves in addition to AUC values to assess model performance. Dividing the data of a widespread species into biologically relevant partitions greatly increased the performance of our distribution model; therefore, this approach may prove to be quite practical and informative for a wide range of modeling applications. PMID:21929792

  8. Reviewing the relevance of fluorescence in biological systems.

    PubMed

    Lagorio, M Gabriela; Cordon, Gabriela B; Iriel, Analia

    2015-09-26

    Fluorescence is emitted by diverse living organisms. The analysis and interpretation of these signals may give information about their physiological state, ways of communication among species and the presence of specific chemicals. In this manuscript we review the state of the art in the research on the fluorescence emitted by plant leaves, fruits, flowers, avians, butterflies, beetles, dragonflies, millipedes, cockroaches, bees, spiders, scorpions and sea organisms and discuss its relevance in nature. PMID:26103563

  9. Streptococcus pyogenes biofilms—formation, biology, and clinical relevance

    PubMed Central

    Fiedler, Tomas; Köller, Thomas; Kreikemeyer, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    Streptococcus pyogenes (group A streptococci, GAS) is an exclusive human bacterial pathogen. The virulence potential of this species is tremendous. Interactions with humans range from asymptomatic carriage over mild and superficial infections of skin and mucosal membranes up to systemic purulent toxic-invasive disease manifestations. Particularly the latter are a severe threat for predisposed patients and lead to significant death tolls worldwide. This places GAS among the most important Gram-positive bacterial pathogens. Many recent reviews have highlighted the GAS repertoire of virulence factors, regulators and regulatory circuits/networks that enable GAS to colonize the host and to deal with all levels of the host immune defense. This covers in vitro and in vivo studies, including animal infection studies based on mice and more relevant, macaque monkeys. It is now appreciated that GAS, like many other bacterial species, do not necessarily exclusively live in a planktonic lifestyle. GAS is capable of microcolony and biofilm formation on host cells and tissues. We are now beginning to understand that this feature significantly contributes to GAS pathogenesis. In this review we will discuss the current knowledge on GAS biofilm formation, the biofilm-phenotype associated virulence factors, regulatory aspects of biofilm formation, the clinical relevance, and finally contemporary treatment regimens and future treatment options. PMID:25717441

  10. Unaffected features of BSA stabilized Ag nanoparticles after storage and reconstitution in biological relevant media.

    PubMed

    Valenti, Laura E; Giacomelli, Carla E

    2015-08-01

    Silver-coated orthopedic implants and silver composite materials have been proposed to produce local biocidal activity at low dose to reduce post-surgery infection that remains one of the major contributions to the patient morbidity. This work presents the synthesis combined with the characterization, colloidal stability in biological relevant media, antimicrobial activity and handling properties of silver nanoparticles (Ag-NP) before and after freeze dry and storage. The nanomaterial was synthesized in aqueous solution with simple, reproducible and low-cost strategies using bovine serum albumin (BSA) as the stabilizing agent. Ag-NP were characterized by means of the size distribution and morphology (UV-vis spectra, dynamic light scattering measurements and TEM images), charge as a function of the pH (zeta potential measurements) and colloidal stability in biological relevant media (UV-vis spectra and dynamic light scattering measurements). Further, the interactions between the protein and Ag-NP were evaluated by surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) and the antimicrobial activity was tested with two bacteria strains (namely Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis) mainly present in the infections caused by implants and prosthesis in orthopedic surgery. Finally, the Ag-NP dispersed in aqueous solution were dried and stored as long-lasting powders that were easily reconstituted without losing their stability and antimicrobial properties. The proposed methods to stabilize Ag-NP not only produce stable dispersions in media of biological relevance but also long-lasting powders with optimal antimicrobial activity in the nanomolar range. This level is much lower than the cytotoxicity determined in vitro on osteoblasts, osteoclasts and osteoarthritic chondrocytes. The synthesized Ag-NP can be incorporated as additive of biomaterials or pharmaceutical products to confer antimicrobial activity in a powdered form in different formulations, dispersed in

  11. Student perception of relevance of biology content to everyday life: A study in higher education biology courses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Himschoot, Agnes Rose

    The purpose of this mixed method case study was to examine the effects of methods of instruction on students' perception of relevance in higher education non-biology majors' courses. Nearly ninety percent of all students in a liberal arts college are required to take a general biology course. It is proposed that for many of those students, this is the last science course they will take for life. General biology courses are suspected of discouraging student interest in biology with large enrollment, didactic instruction, covering a huge amount of content in one semester, and are charged with promoting student disengagement with biology by the end of the course. Previous research has been aimed at increasing student motivation and interest in biology as measured by surveys and test results. Various methods of instruction have been tested and show evidence of improved learning gains. This study focused on students' perception of relevance of biology content to everyday life and the methods of instruction that increase it. A quantitative survey was administered to assess perception of relevance pre and post instruction over three topics typically taught in a general biology course. A second quantitative survey of student experiences during instruction was administered to identify methods of instruction used in the course lecture and lab. While perception of relevance dropped in the study, qualitative focus groups provided insight into the surprising results by identifying topics that are more relevant than the ones chosen for the study, conveying the affects of the instructor's personal and instructional skills on student engagement, explanation of how active engagement during instruction promotes understanding of relevance, the roll of laboratory in promoting students' understanding of relevance as well as identifying external factors that affect student engagement. The study also investigated the extent to which gender affected changes in students' perception of

  12. Biologically relevant neural network architectures for support vector machines.

    PubMed

    Jändel, Magnus

    2014-01-01

    Neural network architectures that implement support vector machines (SVM) are investigated for the purpose of modeling perceptual one-shot learning in biological organisms. A family of SVM algorithms including variants of maximum margin, 1-norm, 2-norm and ν-SVM is considered. SVM training rules adapted for neural computation are derived. It is found that competitive queuing memory (CQM) is ideal for storing and retrieving support vectors. Several different CQM-based neural architectures are examined for each SVM algorithm. Although most of the sixty-four scanned architectures are unconvincing for biological modeling four feasible candidates are found. The seemingly complex learning rule of a full ν-SVM implementation finds a particularly simple and natural implementation in bisymmetric architectures. Since CQM-like neural structures are thought to encode skilled action sequences and bisymmetry is ubiquitous in motor systems it is speculated that trainable pattern recognition in low-level perception has evolved as an internalized motor programme. PMID:24126252

  13. Relevance of ammonium oxidation within biological soil crust communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, S.L.; Budinoff, C.R.; Belnap, J.; Garcia-Pichel, F.

    2005-01-01

    Thin, vertically structured topsoil communities that become ecologically important in arid regions (biological soil crusts or BSCs) are responsible for much of the nitrogen inputs into pristine arid lands. We studied N2 fixation and ammonium oxidation (AO) at subcentimetre resolution within BSCs from the Colorado Plateau. Pools of dissolved porewater nitrate/ nitrite, ammonium and organic nitrogen in wetted BSCs were high in comparison with those typical of aridosoils. They remained stable during incubations, indicating that input and output processes were of similar magnitude. Areal N2 fixation rates (6.5-48 ??mol C2H2 m-2 h -1) were high, the vertical distribution of N2 fixation peaking close to the surface if populations of heterocystous cyanobacteria were present, but in the subsurface if they were absent. Areal AO rates (19-46 ??mol N m-2 h-1) were commensurate with N2 fixation inputs. When considering oxygen availability, AO activity invariably peaked 2-3 mm deep and was limited by oxygen (not ammonium) supply. Most probable number (MPN)-enumerated ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (6.7-7.9 ?? 103 cells g-1 on average) clearly peaked at 2-3 mm depth. Thus, AO (hence nitrification) is a spatially restricted but important process in the nitrogen cycling of BSC, turning much of the biologically fixed nitrogen into oxidized forms, the fate of which remains to be determined.

  14. Student Perception of Relevance of Biology Content to Everyday Life: A Study in Higher Education Biology Courses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Himschoot, Agnes Rose

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this mixed method case study was to examine the effects of methods of instruction on students' perception of relevance in higher education non-biology majors' courses. Nearly ninety percent of all students in a liberal arts college are required to take a general biology course. It is proposed that for many of those students, this is…

  15. Terahertz vibrational properties of water nanoclusters relevant to biology.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Keith

    2012-01-01

    Water nanoclusters are shown from first-principles calculations to possess unique terahertz-frequency vibrational modes in the 1-6 THz range, corresponding to O-O-O "bending," "squashing," and "twisting" "surface" distortions of the clusters. The cluster molecular-orbital LUMOs are huge Rydberg-like "S," "P," "D," and "F" orbitals that accept an extra electron via optical excitation, ionization, or electron donation from interacting biomolecules. Dynamic Jahn-Teller coupling of these "hydrated-electron" orbitals to the THz vibrations promotes such water clusters as vibronically active "structured water" essential to biomolecular function such as protein folding. In biological microtubules, confined water-cluster THz vibrations may induce their "quantum coherence" communicated by Jahn-Teller phonons via coupling of the THz electromagnetic field to the water clusters' large electric dipole moments. PMID:23277672

  16. Extracellular Vesicles: Composition, Biological Relevance, and Methods of Study

    PubMed Central

    Zaborowski, MikoŁaj P.; Balaj, Leonora; Breakefield, Xandra O.; Lai, Charles P.

    2015-01-01

    The release of extracellular vesicles (EVs), including exosomes and microvesicles, is a phenomenon shared by many cell types as a means of communicating with other cells and also potentially removing cell contents. The cargo of EVs includes the proteins, lipids, nucleic acids, and membrane receptors of the cells from which they originate. EVs released into the extracellular space can enter body fluids and potentially reach distant tissues. Once taken up by neighboring and/or distal cells, EVs can transfer functional cargo that may alter the status of recipient cells, thereby contributing to both physiological and pathological processes. In this article, we will focus on EV composition, mechanisms of uptake, and their biological effects on recipient cells. We will also discuss established and recently developed methods used to study EVs, including isolation, quantification, labeling and imaging protocols, as well as RNA analysis. PMID:26955082

  17. Encoding and processing biologically relevant temporal information in electrosensory systems.

    PubMed

    Fortune, E S; Rose, G J; Kawasaki, M

    2006-06-01

    Wave-type weakly electric fish are specialists in time-domain processing: behaviors in these animals are often tightly correlated with the temporal structure of electrosensory signals. Behavioral responses in these fish can be dependent on differences in the temporal structure of electrosensory signals alone. This feature has facilitated the study of temporal codes and processing in central nervous system circuits of these animals. The temporal encoding and mechanisms used to transform temporal codes in the brain have been identified and characterized in several species, including South American gymnotid species and in the African mormyrid genus Gymnarchus. These distantly related groups use similar strategies for neural computations of information on the order of microseconds, milliseconds, and seconds. Here, we describe a suite of mechanisms for behaviorally relevant computations of temporal information that have been elucidated in these systems. These results show the critical role that behavioral experiments continue to have in the study of the neural control of behavior and its evolution. PMID:16450118

  18. The ChEBI reference database and ontology for biologically relevant chemistry: enhancements for 2013.

    PubMed

    Hastings, Janna; de Matos, Paula; Dekker, Adriano; Ennis, Marcus; Harsha, Bhavana; Kale, Namrata; Muthukrishnan, Venkatesh; Owen, Gareth; Turner, Steve; Williams, Mark; Steinbeck, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    ChEBI (http://www.ebi.ac.uk/chebi) is a database and ontology of chemical entities of biological interest. Over the past few years, ChEBI has continued to grow steadily in content, and has added several new features. In addition to incorporating all user-requested compounds, our annotation efforts have emphasized immunology, natural products and metabolites in many species. All database entries are now 'is_a' classified within the ontology, meaning that all of the chemicals are available to semantic reasoning tools that harness the classification hierarchy. We have completely aligned the ontology with the Open Biomedical Ontologies (OBO) Foundry-recommended upper level Basic Formal Ontology. Furthermore, we have aligned our chemical classification with the classification of chemical-involving processes in the Gene Ontology (GO), and as a result of this effort, the majority of chemical-involving processes in GO are now defined in terms of the ChEBI entities that participate in them. This effort necessitated incorporating many additional biologically relevant compounds. We have incorporated additional data types including reference citations, and the species and component for metabolites. Finally, our website and web services have had several enhancements, most notably the provision of a dynamic new interactive graph-based ontology visualization. PMID:23180789

  19. IDENTIFICATION OF BIOLOGICALLY RELEVANT GENES USING A DATABASE OF RAT LIVER AND KIDNEY BASELINE GENE EXPRESSION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Microarray data from independent labs and studies can be compared to potentially identify toxicologically and biologically relevant genes. The Baseline Animal Database working group of HESI was formed to assess baseline gene expression from microarray data derived from control or...

  20. Cooperativity in noncovalent interactions of biologically relevant molecules.

    PubMed

    Antony, Jens; Brüske, Björn; Grimme, Stefan

    2009-10-14

    Using a recently published benchmark MP2 database of nucleic acid base trimers, the three-body contribution to the interaction energy (TBE, also termed (non)cooperativity) as a function of base composition and complex geometry is studied. In 28 out of 141 cases (or 20%), the counterpoise-corrected MP2/TZV(2df,2pd) TBE exceeds 1 kcal mol(-1). The TBE is below 1 kcal mol(-1) for all trimers in the benchmark set consisting of U, T, and A, irrespective of the geometrical arrangement in the database. The largest MP2/TZV(2df,2pd) cooperativity of -9 kcal mol(-1) is obtained for a hydrogen-bonded guanine trimer. The largest anti-cooperativity occurs for a protonated cytosine-guanine-cytosine trimer (6 kcal mol(-1)). Generally, the many-body non-additivity term is an order of magnitude smaller than the interaction energies (on average -33 kcal mol(-1)). Employing various density functionals (GGA, meta-GGA, and hybrid) and wave function methods up to third order perturbation theory, and using atomic-orbital basis sets of double-, triple-, and quadruple-zeta quality, we find that the non-additivity effects are almost independent of one particle basis set and method. To enable an interpretation of the TBE, the intermolecular interaction energy is subjected to an energy decomposition analysis (EDA) with a similar definition of the energy terms as the Morokuma decomposition scheme. We find that nonadditive effects are mainly due to the induction, while exchange repulsion, electrostatic, and dispersion contributions are essentially additive, the latter also beyond second order at the MP3/SV(d,p) level. The performance of dispersion-corrected density functional theory for the prediction of structures and binding energies is assessed. While an accurate reproduction of the MP2-optimized reference structures of the trimers can already be accomplished with modern density functionals, only the inclusion of the long-range (London) dispersion interaction provides a consistent picture

  1. Making Biology Learning Relevant to Students: Integrating People, History, and Context into College Biology Teaching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chamany, Katayoun; Allen, Deborah; Tanner, Kimberly

    2008-01-01

    Teaching students to make connections between what they learn in the classroom and what they see in everyday life is imperative. As biology instructors, they may choose to teach biology devoid of social context, believing that students can make these connections on their own. However, students model their instructors' behaviors, and follow their…

  2. Investigation of some biologically relevant redox reactions using electrochemical mass spectrometry interfaced by desorption electrospray ionization

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Mei; Wolff, Chloe; Cui, Weidong

    2013-01-01

    Recently we have shown that, as a versatile ionization technique, desorption electrospray ionization (DESI) can serve as a useful interface to combine electrochemistry (EC) with mass spectrometry (MS). In this study, the EC/DESI-MS method has been further applied to investigate some aqueous phase redox reactions of biological significance, including the reduction of peptide disulfide bonds and nitroaromatics as well as the oxidation of phenothiazines. It was found that knotted/enclosed disulfide bonds in the peptides apamin and endothelin could be electrochemically cleaved. Subsequent tandem MS analysis of the resulting reduced peptide ions using collision-induced dissociation (CID) and electron-capture dissociation (ECD) gave rise to extensive fragment ions, providing a fast protocol for sequencing peptides with complicated disulfide bond linkages. Flunitrazepam and clonazepam, a class of nitroaromatic drugs, are known to undergo reduction into amines which was proposed to involve nitroso and N-hydroxyl intermediates. Now in this study, these corresponding intermediate ions were successfully intercepted and their structures were confirmed by CID. This provides mass spectrometric evidence for the mechanism of the nitro to amine conversion process during nitroreduction, an important redox reaction involved in carcinogenesis. In addition, the well-known oxidation reaction of chlorpromazine was also examined. The putative transient one-electron transfer product, the chlorpromazine radical cation (m/z 318), was captured by MS, for the first time, and its structure was also verified by CID. In addition to these observations, some features of the DESI-interfaced electrochemical mass spectrometry were discussed, such as simple instrumentation and the lack of background signal. These results further demonstrate the feasibility of EC/DESI-MS for the study of the biology-relevant redox chemistry and would find applications in proteomics and drug development research. PMID

  3. CellBase, a comprehensive collection of RESTful web services for retrieving relevant biological information from heterogeneous sources

    PubMed Central

    Bleda, Marta; Tarraga, Joaquin; de Maria, Alejandro; Salavert, Francisco; Garcia-Alonso, Luz; Celma, Matilde; Martin, Ainoha; Dopazo, Joaquin; Medina, Ignacio

    2012-01-01

    During the past years, the advances in high-throughput technologies have produced an unprecedented growth in the number and size of repositories and databases storing relevant biological data. Today, there is more biological information than ever but, unfortunately, the current status of many of these repositories is far from being optimal. Some of the most common problems are that the information is spread out in many small databases; frequently there are different standards among repositories and some databases are no longer supported or they contain too specific and unconnected information. In addition, data size is increasingly becoming an obstacle when accessing or storing biological data. All these issues make very difficult to extract and integrate information from different sources, to analyze experiments or to access and query this information in a programmatic way. CellBase provides a solution to the growing necessity of integration by easing the access to biological data. CellBase implements a set of RESTful web services that query a centralized database containing the most relevant biological data sources. The database is hosted in our servers and is regularly updated. CellBase documentation can be found at http://docs.bioinfo.cipf.es/projects/cellbase. PMID:22693220

  4. Design and synthesis of artificial glycopolypeptides as mediators of biologically relevant binding events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polizzotti, Brian D.

    Toxins and pathogens achieve highly efficient and selective binding through multivalent interactions between relevant oligosaccharides and saccharide receptors on each toxin/pathogen subunit. Because of the important role played by protein-carbohydrate interactions in these pathogenic events and in other human diseases, considerable effort has been devoted toward the development of high-affinity ligands for carbohydrate binding proteins. Multivalent ligands synthesized via traditional polymer techniques have provided valuable insight as to the general guidelines that govern these multivalent interactions, but are inherently limited by an inability to effectively control the molecular weight, polydispersity, sequence, and/or geometrical placement of the saccharide moiety on the glycopolymer. This lack of control makes it virtually impossible to determine the origins of increased binding activity. The synthesis of polymers via protein engineering methods allows control over the molecular weight, as well as the number and spacing of saccharides on a scaffold, which permits the structure-based design of polypeptide-based polymers for inhibition of such multivalent binding events. As such, we have employed a combination of protein engineering techniques and chemical methods to produce a family of galactose-functionalized glycopolymers with different backbone compositions and architectures in which the density, saccharide spacing, and linker length of the pendent carbohydrate moieties have been varied. Such ligands may disrupt pathological carbohydrate-mediated recognition and act as a fundamentally new class of noncytotoxic therapeutic agents with broad applicability to a wide range of human disease; in addition, investigations like these will aid in the deconvolution of the impact of multivalency, spacing, and backbone rigidity in a variety of biologically relevant binding events.

  5. Action video game players' visual search advantage extends to biologically relevant stimuli.

    PubMed

    Chisholm, Joseph D; Kingstone, Alan

    2015-07-01

    Research investigating the effects of action video game experience on cognition has demonstrated a host of performance improvements on a variety of basic tasks. Given the prevailing evidence that these benefits result from efficient control of attentional processes, there has been growing interest in using action video games as a general tool to enhance everyday attentional control. However, to date, there is little evidence indicating that the benefits of action video game playing scale up to complex settings with socially meaningful stimuli - one of the fundamental components of our natural environment. The present experiment compared action video game player (AVGP) and non-video game player (NVGP) performance on an oculomotor capture task that presented participants with face stimuli. In addition, the expression of a distractor face was manipulated to assess if action video game experience modulated the effect of emotion. Results indicate that AVGPs experience less oculomotor capture than NVGPs; an effect that was not influenced by the emotional content depicted by distractor faces. It is noteworthy that this AVGP advantage emerged despite participants being unaware that the investigation had to do with video game playing, and participants being equivalent in their motivation and treatment of the task as a game. The results align with the notion that action video game experience is associated with superior attentional and oculomotor control, and provides evidence that these benefits can generalize to more complex and biologically relevant stimuli. PMID:26071923

  6. Beyond arousal and valence: The importance of the biological versus social relevance of emotional stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Sakaki, Michiko; Niki, Kazuhisa; Mather, Mara

    2012-01-01

    The present study addressed the hypothesis that emotional stimuli relevant to survival or reproduction (biologically emotional stimuli) automatically affect cognitive processing (e.g., attention; memory), while those relevant to social life (socially emotional stimuli) require elaborative processing to modulate attention and memory. Results of our behavioral studies showed that: a) biologically emotional images hold attention more strongly than socially emotional images, b) memory for biologically emotional images was enhanced even with limited cognitive resources, but c) memory for socially emotional images was enhanced only when people had sufficient cognitive resources at encoding. Neither images’ subjective arousal nor their valence modulated these patterns. A subsequent functional magnetic resonance imaging study revealed that biologically emotional images induced stronger activity in visual cortex and greater functional connectivity between amygdala and visual cortex than did socially emotional images. These results suggest that the interconnection between the amygdala and visual cortex supports enhanced attention allocation to biological stimuli. In contrast, socially emotional images evoked greater activity in medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC) and yielded stronger functional connectivity between amygdala and MPFC than biological images. Thus, it appears that emotional processing of social stimuli involves elaborative processing requiring frontal lobe activity. PMID:21964552

  7. Biological relevance of decamethylcyclopentasiloxane (D5) induced rat uterine endometrial adenocarcinoma tumorigenesis: Mode of action and relevance to humans.

    PubMed

    Klaunig, James E; Dekant, Wolfgang; Plotzke, Kathy; Scialli, Anthony R

    2016-02-01

    Decamethylcyclopentasiloxane (D5) is a cyclic siloxane used in the production and formulation of consumer products with potential exposure to manufacturing workers, consumer, and the general public. Following a combined 2-year inhalation chronic bioassay performed in Fischer 344 (F344) rats, an increase in uterine endometrial adenocarcinomas was noted at the highest concentration to which animals were exposed. No other neoplasms were detected. In this study, a dose of 160 ppm produced an incidence of 8% endometrial adenocarcinomas. Based on a number of experimental studies with D5, the current manuscript examines the biological relevance and possible modes of action for the uterine endometrial adenocarcinomas observed in the rat following chronic exposure to D5. Variable rates of spontaneous uterine endometrial adenocarcinomas have been reported for untreated F344 CrlBr rats. As such, we concluded that the slight increase in uterine endometrial adenocarcinomas observed in the D5 chronic bioassay might not be the result of D5 exposure but may be related to variability of the spontaneous tumor incidence in this strain of rat. However, if the uterine endometrial adenocarcinomas are related to D5-exposure, alteration in the estrous cycle in the aging F344 rat is the most likely mode of action. D5 is not genotoxic or estrogenic. The alteration in the estrous cycle is caused by a decrease in progesterone with an increase in the estrogen:progesterone ratio most likely induced by a decrease in prolactin concentration. Available data support that exposure to D5 influences prolactin concentration. Although the effects on prolactin concentrations in a number of experiments were not always consistent, the available data support the conclusion that D5 is acting via a dopamine receptor agonist-like mechanism to alter the pituitary control of the estrous cycle. In further support of this mode of action, studies in F344 aged animals showed that the effects of D5 on estrous

  8. BIOLOGICAL SINKS FOR N ADDITIONS TO A FORESTED CATCHMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of our research is to identify and quantify sinks for experimental Nitrogen (N) additions to a forested catchment at the Bear Brooks Watershed in Maine (BBWM) where background N deposition rates are low (< 4 kg ha-1 yr1). itrogen is added bimonthly to an experimental cat...

  9. Galectin-3 is a marker of favorable prognosis and a biologically relevant molecule in neuroblastic tumors

    PubMed Central

    Veschi, V; Petroni, M; Bartolazzi, A; Altavista, P; Dominici, C; Capalbo, C; Boldrini, R; Castellano, A; McDowell, H P; Pizer, B; Frati, L; Screpanti, I; Gulino, A; Giannini, G

    2014-01-01

    Childhood neuroblastic tumors are characterized by heterogeneous clinical courses, ranging from benign ganglioneuroma (GN) to highly lethal neuroblastoma (NB). Although a refined prognostic evaluation and risk stratification of each tumor patient is becoming increasingly essential to personalize treatment options, currently only few biomolecular markers (essentially MYCN amplification, chromosome 11q status and DNA ploidy) are validated for this purpose in neuroblastic tumors. Here we report that Galectin-3 (Gal-3), a β-galactoside-binding lectin involved in multiple biological functions that has already acquired diagnostic relevance in specific clinical settings, is variably expressed in most differentiated and less aggressive neuroblastic tumors, such as GN and ganglioneuroblastoma, as well as in a subset of NB cases. Gal-3 expression is associated with the INPC histopathological categorization (P<0.001) and Shimada favorable phenotype (P=0.001), but not with other prognostically relevant features. Importantly, Gal-3 expression was associated with a better 5-year overall survival (P=0.003), and with improved cumulative survival in patient subsets at worse prognosis, such as older age at diagnosis, advanced stages or NB histopathological classification. In vitro, Gal-3 expression and nuclear accumulation accompanied retinoic acid-induced cell differentiation in NB cell lines. Forced Gal-3 overexpression increased phenotypic differentiation and substrate adherence, while inhibiting proliferation. Altogether, these findings suggest that Gal-3 is a biologically relevant player for neuroblastic tumors, whose determination by conventional immunohistochemistry might be used for outcome assessment and patient's risk stratification in the clinical setting. PMID:24603328

  10. Additivity of light-scattering patterns of aggregated biological particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moskalensky, Alexander E.; Strokotov, Dmitry I.; Chernyshev, Andrei V.; Maltsev, Valeri P.; Yurkin, Maxim A.

    2014-08-01

    The paper is focused on light scattering by aggregates of optically soft particles with a size larger than the wavelength, in particular, blood platelets. We conducted a systematic simulation of light scattering by dimers and larger aggregates of blood platelets, each modeled as oblate spheroids, using the discrete dipole approximation. Two-dimensional (2-D) light scattering patterns (LSPs) and internal fields showed that the multiple scattering between constituent particles can be neglected. Additionally, we derived conditions of the scattering angle and orientation of the dimer, under which the averaging of the 2-D LSPs over the azimuthal scattering angle washes out interference in the far field, resulting in averaged LSPs of the aggregate being equal to the sum of that for its constituents. We verified theoretical conclusions using the averaged LSPs of blood platelets measured with the scanning flow cytometer (SFC). Moreover, we obtained similar results for a model system of aggregates of polystyrene beads, studied both experimentally and theoretically. Finally, we discussed the potential of discriminating platelet aggregates from monomers using the SFC.

  11. Nuclear Quantum Effects in the Dynamics of Biologically Relevant Systems from First Principles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, Mariana; Fang, Wei; Michaelides, Angelos

    Understanding the structure and dynamics of biomolecules is crucial for unveiling the physics behind biology-related processes. These molecules are very flexible and stabilized by a delicate balance of weak (quantum) interactions, thus requiring the inclusion of anharmonic entropic contributions and an accurate description of the electronic and nuclear structure from quantum mechanics. We here join state of the art density-functional theory (DFT) and path integral molecular dynamics (PIMD) to gain quantitative insight into biologically relevant systems. Our design of a better and more efficient approximation to quantum time correlation functions based on PIMD (TRPMD) enables the calculation of ab initio TCFs with which we calculate IR/vibrational spectra and diffusion coefficients. In stacked polyglutamine strands (structures often related to amyloid diseases) a combination of NQE and H-bond cooperativity provides a small free energy stabilization that we connect to a softening of high frequency modes, enhanced by nuclear quantum anharmonicity [3].

  12. [Microbiological and biological methods of the European Pharmacopoeia. Relevant for each medicinal product].

    PubMed

    Norwig, J

    2014-10-01

    According to the EU Directive 2001/83 the European Pharmacopoeia is the official Pharmacopoeia of the European Union. Therefore the European Pharmacopoeia is one of the legal pharmacopoeial compendia in Germany. Any licensed medicinal product on the German market complies with the requirements of the compendial monographs, if applicable. Because the general monographs of the European Pharmacopoeia on Dosage Forms, Substances for Pharmaceutical Use and Pharmaceutical Preparations refer to the microbiological and biological methods of the Pharmacopoeia, the methods are relevant for medicinal products, too. This article presents a rough summary of the microbiological and biological methods of the European Pharmacopoeia and is intended to be a stimulus for the reader to better understand the original compendia. The short description of the methods mentioned, here, is a summary from the Pharmacopoeia and the non-official collection of comments on the texts of the European Pharmacopoeia. PMID:25200487

  13. KDAC8 substrate specificity quantified by a biologically relevant, label-free deacetylation assay.

    PubMed

    Toro, Tasha B; Watt, Terry J

    2015-12-01

    Analysis of the human proteome has identified thousands of unique protein sequences that contain acetylated lysine residues in vivo. These modifications regulate a variety of biological processes and are reversed by the lysine deacetylase (KDAC) family of enzymes. Despite the known prevalence and importance of acetylation, the details of KDAC substrate recognition are not well understood. While several methods have been developed to monitor protein deacetylation, none are particularly suited for identifying enzyme-substrate pairs of label-free substrates across the entire family of lysine deacetylases. Here, we present a fluorescamine-based assay which is more biologically relevant than existing methods and amenable to probing substrate specificity. Using this assay, we evaluated the activity of KDAC8 and other lysine deacetylases, including a sirtuin, for several peptides derived from known acetylated proteins. KDAC8 showed clear preferences for some peptides over others, indicating that the residues immediately surrounding the acetylated lysine play an important role in substrate specificity. Steady-state kinetics suggest that the sequence surrounding the acetylated lysine affects binding affinity and catalytic rate independently. Our results provide direct evidence that potential KDAC8 substrates previously identified through cell based experiments can be directly deacetylated by KDAC8. Conversely, the data from this assay did not correlate well with predictions from previous screens for KDAC8 substrates using less biologically relevant substrates and assay conditions. Combining results from our assay with mass spectrometry-based experiments and cell-based experiments will allow the identification of specific KDAC-substrate pairs and lead to a better understanding of the biological consequences of these interactions. PMID:26402585

  14. Inactivation of the antibacterial and cytotoxic properties of silver ions by biologically relevant compounds.

    PubMed

    Mulley, Geraldine; Jenkins, A Tobias A; Waterfield, Nicholas R

    2014-01-01

    There has been a recent surge in the use of silver as an antimicrobial agent in a wide range of domestic and clinical products, intended to prevent or treat bacterial infections and reduce bacterial colonization of surfaces. It has been reported that the antibacterial and cytotoxic properties of silver are affected by the assay conditions, particularly the type of growth media used in vitro. The toxicity of Ag+ to bacterial cells is comparable to that of human cells. We demonstrate that biologically relevant compounds such as glutathione, cysteine and human blood components significantly reduce the toxicity of silver ions to clinically relevant pathogenic bacteria and primary human dermal fibroblasts (skin cells). Bacteria are able to grow normally in the presence of silver nitrate at >20-fold the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) if Ag+ and thiols are added in a 1:1 ratio because the reaction of Ag+ with extracellular thiols prevents silver ions from interacting with cells. Extracellular thiols and human serum also significantly reduce the antimicrobial activity of silver wound dressings Aquacel-Ag (Convatec) and Acticoat (Smith & Nephew) to Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli in vitro. These results have important implications for the deployment of silver as an antimicrobial agent in environments exposed to biological tissue or secretions. Significant amounts of money and effort have been directed at the development of silver-coated medical devices (e.g. dressings, catheters, implants). We believe our findings are essential for the effective design and testing of antimicrobial silver coatings. PMID:24728271

  15. Inactivation of the Antibacterial and Cytotoxic Properties of Silver Ions by Biologically Relevant Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Mulley, Geraldine; Jenkins, A. Tobias A.; Waterfield, Nicholas R.

    2014-01-01

    There has been a recent surge in the use of silver as an antimicrobial agent in a wide range of domestic and clinical products, intended to prevent or treat bacterial infections and reduce bacterial colonization of surfaces. It has been reported that the antibacterial and cytotoxic properties of silver are affected by the assay conditions, particularly the type of growth media used in vitro. The toxicity of Ag+ to bacterial cells is comparable to that of human cells. We demonstrate that biologically relevant compounds such as glutathione, cysteine and human blood components significantly reduce the toxicity of silver ions to clinically relevant pathogenic bacteria and primary human dermal fibroblasts (skin cells). Bacteria are able to grow normally in the presence of silver nitrate at >20-fold the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) if Ag+ and thiols are added in a 1∶1 ratio because the reaction of Ag+ with extracellular thiols prevents silver ions from interacting with cells. Extracellular thiols and human serum also significantly reduce the antimicrobial activity of silver wound dressings Aquacel-Ag (Convatec) and Acticoat (Smith & Nephew) to Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Escherichia coli in vitro. These results have important implications for the deployment of silver as an antimicrobial agent in environments exposed to biological tissue or secretions. Significant amounts of money and effort have been directed at the development of silver-coated medical devices (e.g. dressings, catheters, implants). We believe our findings are essential for the effective design and testing of antimicrobial silver coatings. PMID:24728271

  16. DNA Hypomethylation Affects Cancer-Related Biological Functions and Genes Relevant in Neuroblastoma Pathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Mayol, Gemma; Martín-Subero, José I.; Ríos, José; Queiros, Ana; Kulis, Marta; Suñol, Mariona; Esteller, Manel; Gómez, Soledad; Garcia, Idoia; de Torres, Carmen; Rodríguez, Eva; Galván, Patricia; Mora, Jaume; Lavarino, Cinzia

    2012-01-01

    Neuroblastoma (NB) pathogenesis has been reported to be closely associated with numerous genetic alterations. However, underlying DNA methylation patterns have not been extensively studied in this developmental malignancy. Here, we generated microarray-based DNA methylation profiles of primary neuroblastic tumors. Stringent supervised differential methylation analyses allowed us to identify epigenetic changes characteristic for NB tumors as well as for clinical and biological subtypes of NB. We observed that gene-specific loss of DNA methylation is more prevalent than promoter hypermethylation. Remarkably, such hypomethylation affected cancer-related biological functions and genes relevant to NB pathogenesis such as CCND1, SPRR3, BTC, EGF and FGF6. In particular, differential methylation in CCND1 affected mostly an evolutionary conserved functionally relevant 3′ untranslated region, suggesting that hypomethylation outside promoter regions may play a role in NB pathogenesis. Hypermethylation targeted genes involved in cell development and proliferation such as RASSF1A, POU2F2 or HOXD3, among others. The results derived from this study provide new candidate epigenetic biomarkers associated with NB as well as insights into the molecular pathogenesis of this tumor, which involves a marked gene-specific hypomethylation. PMID:23144874

  17. Enhanced surface functionality via plasma modification and plasma deposition techniques to create more biologically relevant materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shearer, Jeffrey C.

    Functionalizing nanoparticles and other unusually shaped substrates to create more biologically relevant materials has become central to a wide range of research programs. One of the primary challenges in this field is creating highly functionalized surfaces without modifying the underlying bulk material. Traditional wet chemistry techniques utilize thin film depositions to functionalize nanomaterials with oxygen and nitrogen containing functional groups, such as --OH and --NHx. These functional groups can serve to create surfaces that are amenable to cell adhesion or can act as reactive groups for further attachment of larger structures, such as macromolecules or antiviral agents. Additional layers, such as SiO2, are often added between the nanomaterial and the functionalized coating to act as a barrier films, adhesion layers, and to increase overall hydrophilicity. However, some wet chemistry techniques can damage the bulk material during processing. This dissertation examines the use of plasma processing as an alternative method for producing these highly functionalized surfaces on nanoparticles and polymeric scaffolds through the use of plasma modification and plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition techniques. Specifically, this dissertation will focus on (1) plasma deposition of SiO2 barrier films on nanoparticle substrates; (2) surface functionalization of amine and alcohol groups through (a) plasma co-polymerization and (b) plasma modification; and (3) the design and construction of plasma hardware to facilitate plasma processing of nanoparticles and polymeric scaffolds. The body of work presented herein first examines the fabrication of composite nanoparticles by plasma processing. SiOxC y and hexylamine films were coated onto TiO2 nanoparticles to demonstrate enhanced water dispersion properties. Continuous wave and pulsed allyl alcohol plasmas were used to produce highly functionalized Fe2 O3 supported nanoparticles. Specifically, film composition was

  18. Lack of [3H]quinuclidinyl benzylate binding to biologically relevant binding sites on mononuclear cells.

    PubMed

    Adams, E M; Lubrano, T M; Gordon, J; Fields, J Z

    1992-09-01

    We analyzed the binding characteristics of [3H]quinuclidinyl benzylate ([3H]QNB), a muscarinic cholinergic ligand, to rat and human mononuclear cells (MNC). Under various assay conditions, atropine-sensitive, saturable binding occurred with an apparent Kd of 10 nM. Conditions which disrupted the MNC membrane reduced total binding and eliminated specific binding. Muscarinic agonists were unable to inhibit [3H]QNB binding to MNC at concentrations up to 10(-2) M. Stereoisomers dexetimide and levetimide were equipotent inhibitors of binding (IC50 2 x 10(-5) M). We conclude that, although atropine-sensitive binding of [3H]QNB to MNC occurs, the binding is not consistent with the presence of a biologically relevant muscarinic cholinergic receptor. PMID:1392105

  19. Biologically relevant molecular transducer with increased computing power and iterative abilities.

    PubMed

    Ratner, Tamar; Piran, Ron; Jonoska, Natasha; Keinan, Ehud

    2013-05-23

    As computing devices, which process data and interconvert information, transducers can encode new information and use their output for subsequent computing, offering high computational power that may be equivalent to a universal Turing machine. We report on an experimental DNA-based molecular transducer that computes iteratively and produces biologically relevant outputs. As a proof of concept, the transducer accomplished division of numbers by 3. The iterative power was demonstrated by a recursive application on an obtained output. This device reads plasmids as input and processes the information according to a predetermined algorithm, which is represented by molecular software. The device writes new information on the plasmid using hardware that comprises DNA-manipulating enzymes. The computation produces dual output: a quotient, represented by newly encoded DNA, and a remainder, represented by E. coli phenotypes. This device algorithmically manipulates genetic codes. PMID:23706637

  20. Biologically relevant photoacoustic imaging phantoms with tunable optical and acoustic properties.

    PubMed

    Vogt, William C; Jia, Congxian; Wear, Keith A; Garra, Brian S; Joshua Pfefer, T

    2016-10-01

    Established medical imaging technologies such as magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography rely on well-validated tissue-simulating phantoms for standardized testing of device image quality. The availability of high-quality phantoms for optical-acoustic diagnostics such as photoacoustic tomography (PAT) will facilitate standardization and clinical translation of these emerging approaches. Materials used in prior PAT phantoms do not provide a suitable combination of long-term stability and realistic acoustic and optical properties. Therefore, we have investigated the use of custom polyvinyl chloride plastisol (PVCP) formulations for imaging phantoms and identified a dual-plasticizer approach that provides biologically relevant ranges of relevant properties. Speed of sound and acoustic attenuation were determined over a frequency range of 4 to 9 MHz and optical absorption and scattering over a wavelength range of 400 to 1100 nm. We present characterization of several PVCP formulations, including one designed to mimic breast tissue. This material is used to construct a phantom comprised of an array of cylindrical, hemoglobin-filled inclusions for evaluation of penetration depth. Measurements with a custom near-infrared PAT imager provide quantitative and qualitative comparisons of phantom and tissue images. Results indicate that our PVCP material is uniquely suitable for PAT system image quality evaluation and may provide a practical tool for device validation and intercomparison. PMID:26886681

  1. Enhancement in dentin collagen’s biological stability after proanthocyanidins treatment in clinically relevant time periods

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yi; Chen, Mingsheng; Yao, Xiaomei; Xu, Changqi; Zhang, Ying; Wang, Yong

    2013-01-01

    Objective To investigate whether proanthocyanidins (PA) is capable of improving dentin collagen’s biological stability through cross-linking within time periods that are clinically relevant. Materials and methods Demineralized dentin collagen slabs were treated with 3.75 wt% PA solution for 10 s, 1 min, 30 min, 60 min, 120 min, 360 min, and 720 min, respectively. The resultant cross-linked collagen samples were subject to digestion with 0.1% collagenase at 37 °C for 2 h, 6 h, 12 h, 24 h, 36 h, and 48 h. The percentage of weight loss after digestion was calculated to evaluate PA-treated collagen’s resistance toward enzymatic degradation. Fourier-Transformed Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy was used to probe evidences of PA-collagen interactions after various periods of PA treatment. Results The collagenase digestion assay suggests that PA treatment as short as 10 s can enhance collagen’s resistance toward enzymatic challenge. The FTIR spectroscopy further verifies that PA is indeed incorporated into collagen regardless of treatment time, possibly via a mechanism involving the chemical interactions between PA and collagen. Significance This study confirmed that PA can effectively cross-link collagen and improve its biological stability in time periods as short as 10 s. The use of PA as a priming agent is therefore clinically feasible and is a promising approach to improving the durability of current dentin bonding systems. PMID:23434233

  2. Modelling low energy electron and positron tracks in biologically relevant media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blanco, Francisco; Muñoz, Antonio; Almeida, Diogo; Ferreira da Silva, Filipe; Limão-Vieira, Paulo; Fuss, Martina C.; Sanz, Ana G.; García, Gustavo

    2013-09-01

    This colloquium describes an approach to incorporate into radiation damage models the effect of low and intermediate energy (0-100 eV) electrons and positrons, slowing down in biologically relevant materials (water and representative biomolecules). The core of the modelling procedure is a C++ computing programme named “Low Energy Particle Track Simulation (LEPTS)”, which is compatible with available general purpose Monte Carlo packages. Input parameters are carefully selected from theoretical and experimental cross section data and energy loss distribution functions. Data sources used for this purpose are reviewed showing examples of electron and positron cross section and energy loss data for interactions with different media of increasing complexity: atoms, molecules, clusters and condense matter. Finally, we show how such a model can be used to develop an effective dosimetric tool at the molecular level (i.e. nanodosimetry). Recent experimental developments to study the fragmentation induced in biologically material by charge transfer from neutrals and negative ions are also included.

  3. Comparative Analysis of Biologically Relevant Response Curves in Gene Expression Experiments: Heteromorphy, Heterochrony, and Heterometry

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Stuart G.

    2014-01-01

    To gain biological insights, investigators sometimes compare sequences of gene expression measurements under two scenarios (such as two drugs or species). For this situation, we developed an algorithm to fit, identify, and compare biologically relevant response curves in terms of heteromorphy (different curves), heterochrony (different transition times), and heterometry (different magnitudes). The curves are flat, linear, sigmoid, hockey-stick (sigmoid missing a steady state), transient (sigmoid missing two steady states), impulse (with peak or trough), step (with intermediate-level plateau), impulse+ (impulse with an extra parameter), step+ (step with an extra parameter), further characterized by upward or downward trend. To reduce overfitting, we fit the curves to every other response, evaluated the fit in the remaining responses, and identified the most parsimonious curves that yielded a good fit. We measured goodness of fit using a statistic comparable over different genes, namely the square root of the mean squared prediction error as a percentage of the range of responses, which we call the relative prediction error (RPE). We illustrated the algorithm using data on gene expression at 14 times in the embryonic development in two species of frogs. Software written in Mathematica is freely available.

  4. multiClust: An R-package for Identifying Biologically Relevant Clusters in Cancer Transcriptome Profiles

    PubMed Central

    Lawlor, Nathan; Fabbri, Alec; Guan, Peiyong; George, Joshy; Karuturi, R. Krishna Murthy

    2016-01-01

    Clustering is carried out to identify patterns in transcriptomics profiles to determine clinically relevant subgroups of patients. Feature (gene) selection is a critical and an integral part of the process. Currently, there are many feature selection and clustering methods to identify the relevant genes and perform clustering of samples. However, choosing an appropriate methodology is difficult. In addition, extensive feature selection methods have not been supported by the available packages. Hence, we developed an integrative R-package called multiClust that allows researchers to experiment with the choice of combination of methods for gene selection and clustering with ease. Using multiClust, we identified the best performing clustering methodology in the context of clinical outcome. Our observations demonstrate that simple methods such as variance-based ranking perform well on the majority of data sets, provided that the appropriate number of genes is selected. However, different gene ranking and selection methods remain relevant as no methodology works for all studies. PMID:27330269

  5. Biologically Relevant Mechanism For Catalytic Removal of Superoxide by Simple Manganese Compounds

    SciTech Connect

    Barnese K.; Cabelli D.; Gralla, E.B.; Valentine, J.S.

    2012-05-01

    Nonenzymatic manganese was first shown to provide protection against superoxide toxicity in vivo in 1981, but the chemical mechanism responsible for this protection subsequently became controversial due to conflicting reports concerning the ability of Mn to catalyze superoxide disproportionation in vitro. In a recent communication, we reported that low concentrations of a simple Mn phosphate salt under physiologically relevant conditions will indeed catalyze superoxide disproportionation in vitro. We report now that two of the four Mn complexes that are expected to be most abundant in vivo, Mn phosphate and Mn carbonate, can catalyze superoxide disproportionation at physiologically relevant concentrations and pH, whereas Mn pyrophosphate and citrate complexes cannot. Additionally, the chemical mechanisms of these reactions have been studied in detail, and the rates of reactions of the catalytic removal of superoxide by Mn phosphate and carbonate have been modeled. Physiologically relevant concentrations of these compounds were found to be sufficient to mimic an effective concentration of enzymatic superoxide dismutase found in vivo. This mechanism provides a likely explanation as to how Mn combats superoxide stress in cellular systems.

  6. Focused ultrasound: relevant history and prospects for the addition of mechanical energy to the neurosurgical armamentarium.

    PubMed

    Christian, Eisha; Yu, Cheng; Apuzzo, Michael L J

    2014-01-01

    Although the concept of focused ultrasonography emerged more than 70 years ago, the need for a craniectomy obviated its development as a noninvasive technology. Since then advances in phased array transducers and magnetic resonance imaging technology have resurrected the ultrasound as a noninvasive therapeutic for a plethora of neurological conditions ranging from embolic stroke and intracranial hemorrhage to movement disorders and brain neoplasia. In the same way that stereotactic radiosurgery has fundamentally changed the scope and treatment paradigms of tumor and specifically skull base surgery, focused ultrasound has a similar potential to revolutionize the field of neurological surgery. In addition, focused ultrasound comes without the general complexity or the risks of ionizing radiation that accompany radiosurgery. As the quest for minimally invasive and noninvasive therapeutics continues to define the new neurosurgery, the focused ultrasound evolves to join the neurosurgical armamentarium. PMID:24952224

  7. Sex differences in panic-relevant responding to a 10% carbon dioxide-enriched air biological challenge.

    PubMed

    Nillni, Yael I; Berenz, Erin C; Rohan, Kelly J; Zvolensky, Michael J

    2012-01-01

    The current study examined sex differences in psychological (i.e., self-reported anxiety, panic symptoms, and avoidance) and physiological (i.e., heart rate and skin conductance level) response to, and recovery from, a laboratory biological challenge. Participants were a community-recruited sample of 128 adults (63.3% women; M(age)=23.2 years, SD=8.9) who underwent a 4-min 10% CO(2)-enriched air biological challenge. As predicted, women reported more severe physical panic symptoms and avoidance (i.e., less willingness to participate in another challenge) and demonstrated increased heart rate as compared to men above and beyond the variance accounted for by other theoretically relevant variables (recent panic attack history, neuroticism, and anxiety sensitivity). Additionally, women demonstrated a faster rate of recovery with respect to heart rate compared to men. These results are in line with literature documenting sex-specific differences in panic psychopathology, and results are discussed in the context of possible mechanisms underlying sex differences in panic vulnerability. PMID:22115836

  8. The relevance of physicochemical and biological parameters for setting emission limit values for plants treating complex industrial wastewaters.

    PubMed

    Huybrechts, Diane; Weltens, Reinhilde; Jacobs, Griet; Borburgh, Ab; Smets, Toon; Hoebeke, Lut; Polders, Caroline

    2014-02-01

    The influents of plants treating complex industrial wastewaters from third parties may contain a large variety of often unknown or unidentified potentially harmful substances. The conventional approach of assessing and regulating the effluents of these plants is to set emission limit values for a limited set of physicochemical parameters, such as heavy metals, biological oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand and adsorbable organic halogen compounds. The objective of this study was to evaluate the relevance of physicochemical parameters for setting emission limit values for such plants based on a comparison of effluent analyses by physicochemical and biological assessment tools. The results show that physicochemical parameters alone are not sufficient to evaluate the effectiveness of the water treatment plants for removing hazardous compounds and to protect the environment. The introduction of toxicity limits and limits for the total bioaccumulation potential should be considered to supplement generic parameters such as chemical oxygen demand and adsorbable organic halogens. A recommendation is made to include toxicity screening as a technique to consider in the determination of best available techniques (BAT) during the upcoming revision of the BAT reference document for the waste treatment industries to provide a more rational basis in decisions on additional treatment steps. PMID:24142491

  9. Effects of biological pit additives on microbial ecology of stored pig manure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of biological pit additives on microbial ecology in stored pig manure were investigated using a dynamic manure storage system, which allowed for continual addition of swine feces and urine. After 13 weeks of manure collection and storage, four treatments were added to tanks (900 L capaci...

  10. Semi-supervised multimodal relevance vector regression improves cognitive performance estimation from imaging and biological biomarkers.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Bo; Zhang, Daoqiang; Chen, Songcan; Kaufer, Daniel I; Shen, Dinggang

    2013-07-01

    Accurate estimation of cognitive scores for patients can help track the progress of neurological diseases. In this paper, we present a novel semi-supervised multimodal relevance vector regression (SM-RVR) method for predicting clinical scores of neurological diseases from multimodal imaging and biological biomarker, to help evaluate pathological stage and predict progression of diseases, e.g., Alzheimer's diseases (AD). Unlike most existing methods, we predict clinical scores from multimodal (imaging and biological) biomarkers, including MRI, FDG-PET, and CSF. Considering that the clinical scores of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) subjects are often less stable compared to those of AD and normal control (NC) subjects due to the heterogeneity of MCI, we use only the multimodal data of MCI subjects, but no corresponding clinical scores, to train a semi-supervised model for enhancing the estimation of clinical scores for AD and NC subjects. We also develop a new strategy for selecting the most informative MCI subjects. We evaluate the performance of our approach on 202 subjects with all three modalities of data (MRI, FDG-PET and CSF) from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. The experimental results show that our SM-RVR method achieves a root-mean-square error (RMSE) of 1.91 and a correlation coefficient (CORR) of 0.80 for estimating the MMSE scores, and also a RMSE of 4.45 and a CORR of 0.78 for estimating the ADAS-Cog scores, demonstrating very promising performances in AD studies. PMID:23504659

  11. Semi-Supervised Multimodal Relevance Vector Regression Improves Cognitive Performance Estimation from Imaging and Biological Biomarkers

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Bo; Chen, Songcan; Kaufer, Daniel I.

    2013-01-01

    Accurate estimation of cognitive scores for patients can help track the progress of neurological diseases. In this paper, we present a novel semi-supervised multimodal relevance vector regression (SM-RVR) method for predicting clinical scores of neurological diseases from multimodal imaging and biological biomarker, to help evaluate pathological stage and predict progression of diseases, e.g., Alzheimer’s diseases (AD). Unlike most existing methods, we predict clinical scores from multimodal (imaging and biological) biomarkers, including MRI, FDG-PET, and CSF. Considering that the clinical scores of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) subjects are often less stable compared to those of AD and normal control (NC) subjects due to the heterogeneity of MCI, we use only the multimodal data of MCI subjects, but no corresponding clinical scores, to train a semi-supervised model for enhancing the estimation of clinical scores for AD and NC subjects. We also develop a new strategy for selecting the most informative MCI subjects. We evaluate the performance of our approach on 202 subjects with all three modalities of data (MRI, FDG-PET and CSF) from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) database. The experimental results show that our SM-RVR method achieves a root-mean-square error (RMSE) of 1.91 and a correlation coefficient (CORR) of 0.80 for estimating the MMSE scores, and also a RMSE of 4.45 and a CORR of 0.78 for estimating the ADAS-Cog scores, demonstrating very promising performances in AD studies. PMID:23504659

  12. A Comparison of Biological and Adoptive Mothers and Fathers: The Relevance of Biological Kinship and Gendered Constructs of Parenthood.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miall, Charlene E.; March, Karen

    2003-01-01

    Used qualitative interviews to examine beliefs and values about biological and adoptive parents. Considered how biological kinship, gender, and actual parenting behavior affect the assessments respondents made of the emotional bonding between parents and children. Found that biological and adoptive parents viewed motherhood as instinctive and…

  13. Relevant uses of surface proteins – display on self‐organized biological structures

    PubMed Central

    Jahns, Anika C.; Rehm, Bernd H. A.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Proteins are often found attached to surfaces of self‐assembling biological units such as whole microbial cells or subcellular structures, e.g. intracellular inclusions. In the last two decades surface proteins were identified that could serve as anchors for the display of foreign protein functions. Extensive protein engineering based on structure–function data enabled efficient display of technically and/or medically relevant protein functions. Small size, diversity of the anchor protein as well as support structure, genetic manipulability and controlled cultivation of phages, bacterial cells and yeasts contributed to the establishment of designed and specifically functionalized tools for applications as sensors, catalysis, biomedicine, vaccine development and library‐based screening technologies. Traditionally, phage display is employed for library screening but applications in biomedicine and vaccine development are also perceived. For some diagnostic purposes phages are even too small in size so other carrier materials where needed and gave way for cell and yeast display. Only recently, intracellular inclusions such as magnetosomes, polyhydroxyalkanoate granules and lipid bodies were conceived as stable subcellular structures enabling the display of foreign protein functions and showing potential as specific and tailor‐made devices for medical and biotechnological applications. PMID:21906264

  14. Genetic associations at 53 loci highlight cell types and biological pathways relevant for kidney function.

    PubMed

    Pattaro, Cristian; Teumer, Alexander; Gorski, Mathias; Chu, Audrey Y; Li, Man; Mijatovic, Vladan; Garnaas, Maija; Tin, Adrienne; Sorice, Rossella; Li, Yong; Taliun, Daniel; Olden, Matthias; Foster, Meredith; Yang, Qiong; Chen, Ming-Huei; Pers, Tune H; Johnson, Andrew D; Ko, Yi-An; Fuchsberger, Christian; Tayo, Bamidele; Nalls, Michael; Feitosa, Mary F; Isaacs, Aaron; Dehghan, Abbas; d'Adamo, Pio; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Dieffenbach, Aida Karina; Zonderman, Alan B; Nolte, Ilja M; van der Most, Peter J; Wright, Alan F; Shuldiner, Alan R; Morrison, Alanna C; Hofman, Albert; Smith, Albert V; Dreisbach, Albert W; Franke, Andre; Uitterlinden, Andre G; Metspalu, Andres; Tonjes, Anke; Lupo, Antonio; Robino, Antonietta; Johansson, Åsa; Demirkan, Ayse; Kollerits, Barbara; Freedman, Barry I; Ponte, Belen; Oostra, Ben A; Paulweber, Bernhard; Krämer, Bernhard K; Mitchell, Braxton D; Buckley, Brendan M; Peralta, Carmen A; Hayward, Caroline; Helmer, Catherine; Rotimi, Charles N; Shaffer, Christian M; Müller, Christian; Sala, Cinzia; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Saint-Pierre, Aude; Ackermann, Daniel; Shriner, Daniel; Ruggiero, Daniela; Toniolo, Daniela; Lu, Yingchang; Cusi, Daniele; Czamara, Darina; Ellinghaus, David; Siscovick, David S; Ruderfer, Douglas; Gieger, Christian; Grallert, Harald; Rochtchina, Elena; Atkinson, Elizabeth J; Holliday, Elizabeth G; Boerwinkle, Eric; Salvi, Erika; Bottinger, Erwin P; Murgia, Federico; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Ernst, Florian; Kronenberg, Florian; Hu, Frank B; Navis, Gerjan J; Curhan, Gary C; Ehret, George B; Homuth, Georg; Coassin, Stefan; Thun, Gian-Andri; Pistis, Giorgio; Gambaro, Giovanni; Malerba, Giovanni; Montgomery, Grant W; Eiriksdottir, Gudny; Jacobs, Gunnar; Li, Guo; Wichmann, H-Erich; Campbell, Harry; Schmidt, Helena; Wallaschofski, Henri; Völzke, Henry; Brenner, Hermann; Kroemer, Heyo K; Kramer, Holly; Lin, Honghuang; Leach, I Mateo; Ford, Ian; Guessous, Idris; Rudan, Igor; Prokopenko, Inga; Borecki, Ingrid; Heid, Iris M; Kolcic, Ivana; Persico, Ivana; Jukema, J Wouter; Wilson, James F; Felix, Janine F; Divers, Jasmin; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Stafford, Jeanette M; Gaspoz, Jean-Michel; Smith, Jennifer A; Faul, Jessica D; Wang, Jie Jin; Ding, Jingzhong; Hirschhorn, Joel N; Attia, John; Whitfield, John B; Chalmers, John; Viikari, Jorma; Coresh, Josef; Denny, Joshua C; Karjalainen, Juha; Fernandes, Jyotika K; Endlich, Karlhans; Butterbach, Katja; Keene, Keith L; Lohman, Kurt; Portas, Laura; Launer, Lenore J; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Yengo, Loic; Franke, Lude; Ferrucci, Luigi; Rose, Lynda M; Kedenko, Lyudmyla; Rao, Madhumathi; Struchalin, Maksim; Kleber, Marcus E; Cavalieri, Margherita; Haun, Margot; Cornelis, Marilyn C; Ciullo, Marina; Pirastu, Mario; de Andrade, Mariza; McEvoy, Mark A; Woodward, Mark; Adam, Martin; Cocca, Massimiliano; Nauck, Matthias; Imboden, Medea; Waldenberger, Melanie; Pruijm, Menno; Metzger, Marie; Stumvoll, Michael; Evans, Michele K; Sale, Michele M; Kähönen, Mika; Boban, Mladen; Bochud, Murielle; Rheinberger, Myriam; Verweij, Niek; Bouatia-Naji, Nabila; Martin, Nicholas G; Hastie, Nick; Probst-Hensch, Nicole; Soranzo, Nicole; Devuyst, Olivier; Raitakari, Olli; Gottesman, Omri; Franco, Oscar H; Polasek, Ozren; Gasparini, Paolo; Munroe, Patricia B; Ridker, Paul M; Mitchell, Paul; Muntner, Paul; Meisinger, Christa; Smit, Johannes H; Kovacs, Peter; Wild, Philipp S; Froguel, Philippe; Rettig, Rainer; Mägi, Reedik; Biffar, Reiner; Schmidt, Reinhold; Middelberg, Rita P S; Carroll, Robert J; Penninx, Brenda W; Scott, Rodney J; Katz, Ronit; Sedaghat, Sanaz; Wild, Sarah H; Kardia, Sharon L R; Ulivi, Sheila; Hwang, Shih-Jen; Enroth, Stefan; Kloiber, Stefan; Trompet, Stella; Stengel, Benedicte; Hancock, Stephen J; Turner, Stephen T; Rosas, Sylvia E; Stracke, Sylvia; Harris, Tamara B; Zeller, Tanja; Zemunik, Tatijana; Lehtimäki, Terho; Illig, Thomas; Aspelund, Thor; Nikopensius, Tiit; Esko, Tonu; Tanaka, Toshiko; Gyllensten, Ulf; Völker, Uwe; Emilsson, Valur; Vitart, Veronique; Aalto, Ville; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Chouraki, Vincent; Chen, Wei-Min; Igl, Wilmar; März, Winfried; Koenig, Wolfgang; Lieb, Wolfgang; Loos, Ruth J F; Liu, Yongmei; Snieder, Harold; Pramstaller, Peter P; Parsa, Afshin; O'Connell, Jeffrey R; Susztak, Katalin; Hamet, Pavel; Tremblay, Johanne; de Boer, Ian H; Böger, Carsten A; Goessling, Wolfram; Chasman, Daniel I; Köttgen, Anna; Kao, W H Linda; Fox, Caroline S

    2016-01-01

    Reduced glomerular filtration rate defines chronic kidney disease and is associated with cardiovascular and all-cause mortality. We conducted a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies for estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), combining data across 133,413 individuals with replication in up to 42,166 individuals. We identify 24 new and confirm 29 previously identified loci. Of these 53 loci, 19 associate with eGFR among individuals with diabetes. Using bioinformatics, we show that identified genes at eGFR loci are enriched for expression in kidney tissues and in pathways relevant for kidney development and transmembrane transporter activity, kidney structure, and regulation of glucose metabolism. Chromatin state mapping and DNase I hypersensitivity analyses across adult tissues demonstrate preferential mapping of associated variants to regulatory regions in kidney but not extra-renal tissues. These findings suggest that genetic determinants of eGFR are mediated largely through direct effects within the kidney and highlight important cell types and biological pathways. PMID:26831199

  15. Genetic associations at 53 loci highlight cell types and biological pathways relevant for kidney function

    PubMed Central

    Pattaro, Cristian; Teumer, Alexander; Gorski, Mathias; Chu, Audrey Y.; Li, Man; Mijatovic, Vladan; Garnaas, Maija; Tin, Adrienne; Sorice, Rossella; Li, Yong; Taliun, Daniel; Olden, Matthias; Foster, Meredith; Yang, Qiong; Chen, Ming-Huei; Pers, Tune H.; Johnson, Andrew D.; Ko, Yi-An; Fuchsberger, Christian; Tayo, Bamidele; Nalls, Michael; Feitosa, Mary F.; Isaacs, Aaron; Dehghan, Abbas; d'Adamo, Pio; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Dieffenbach, Aida Karina; Zonderman, Alan B.; Nolte, Ilja M.; van der Most, Peter J.; Wright, Alan F.; Shuldiner, Alan R.; Morrison, Alanna C.; Hofman, Albert; Smith, Albert V.; Dreisbach, Albert W.; Franke, Andre; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; Metspalu, Andres; Tonjes, Anke; Lupo, Antonio; Robino, Antonietta; Johansson, Åsa; Demirkan, Ayse; Kollerits, Barbara; Freedman, Barry I.; Ponte, Belen; Oostra, Ben A.; Paulweber, Bernhard; Krämer, Bernhard K.; Mitchell, Braxton D.; Buckley, Brendan M.; Peralta, Carmen A.; Hayward, Caroline; Helmer, Catherine; Rotimi, Charles N.; Shaffer, Christian M.; Müller, Christian; Sala, Cinzia; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Saint-Pierre, Aude; Ackermann, Daniel; Shriner, Daniel; Ruggiero, Daniela; Toniolo, Daniela; Lu, Yingchang; Cusi, Daniele; Czamara, Darina; Ellinghaus, David; Siscovick, David S.; Ruderfer, Douglas; Gieger, Christian; Grallert, Harald; Rochtchina, Elena; Atkinson, Elizabeth J.; Holliday, Elizabeth G.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Salvi, Erika; Bottinger, Erwin P.; Murgia, Federico; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Ernst, Florian; Kronenberg, Florian; Hu, Frank B.; Navis, Gerjan J.; Curhan, Gary C.; Ehret, George B.; Homuth, Georg; Coassin, Stefan; Thun, Gian-Andri; Pistis, Giorgio; Gambaro, Giovanni; Malerba, Giovanni; Montgomery, Grant W.; Eiriksdottir, Gudny; Jacobs, Gunnar; Li, Guo; Wichmann, H-Erich; Campbell, Harry; Schmidt, Helena; Wallaschofski, Henri; Völzke, Henry; Brenner, Hermann; Kroemer, Heyo K.; Kramer, Holly; Lin, Honghuang; Leach, I. Mateo; Ford, Ian; Guessous, Idris; Rudan, Igor; Prokopenko, Inga; Borecki, Ingrid; Heid, Iris M.; Kolcic, Ivana; Persico, Ivana; Jukema, J. Wouter; Wilson, James F.; Felix, Janine F.; Divers, Jasmin; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Stafford, Jeanette M.; Gaspoz, Jean-Michel; Smith, Jennifer A.; Faul, Jessica D.; Wang, Jie Jin; Ding, Jingzhong; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Attia, John; Whitfield, John B.; Chalmers, John; Viikari, Jorma; Coresh, Josef; Denny, Joshua C.; Karjalainen, Juha; Fernandes, Jyotika K.; Endlich, Karlhans; Butterbach, Katja; Keene, Keith L.; Lohman, Kurt; Portas, Laura; Launer, Lenore J.; Lyytikäinen, Leo-Pekka; Yengo, Loic; Franke, Lude; Ferrucci, Luigi; Rose, Lynda M.; Kedenko, Lyudmyla; Rao, Madhumathi; Struchalin, Maksim; Kleber, Marcus E.; Cavalieri, Margherita; Haun, Margot; Cornelis, Marilyn C.; Ciullo, Marina; Pirastu, Mario; de Andrade, Mariza; McEvoy, Mark A.; Woodward, Mark; Adam, Martin; Cocca, Massimiliano; Nauck, Matthias; Imboden, Medea; Waldenberger, Melanie; Pruijm, Menno; Metzger, Marie; Stumvoll, Michael; Evans, Michele K.; Sale, Michele M.; Kähönen, Mika; Boban, Mladen; Bochud, Murielle; Rheinberger, Myriam; Verweij, Niek; Bouatia-Naji, Nabila; Martin, Nicholas G.; Hastie, Nick; Probst-Hensch, Nicole; Soranzo, Nicole; Devuyst, Olivier; Raitakari, Olli; Gottesman, Omri; Franco, Oscar H.; Polasek, Ozren; Gasparini, Paolo; Munroe, Patricia B.; Ridker, Paul M.; Mitchell, Paul; Muntner, Paul; Meisinger, Christa; Smit, Johannes H.; Abecasis, Goncalo R.; Adair, Linda S.; Alexander, Myriam; Altshuler, David; Amin, Najaf; Arking, Dan E.; Arora, Pankaj; Aulchenko, Yurii; Bakker, Stephan J. L.; Bandinelli, Stefania; Barroso, Ines; Beckmann, Jacques S.; Beilby, John P.; Bergman, Richard N.; Bergmann, Sven; Bis, Joshua C.; Boehnke, Michael; Bonnycastle, Lori L.; Bornstein, Stefan R.; Bots, Michiel L.; Bragg-Gresham, Jennifer L.; Brand, Stefan-Martin; Brand, Eva; Braund, Peter S.; Brown, Morris J.; Burton, Paul R.; Casas, Juan P.; Caulfield, Mark J.; Chakravarti, Aravinda; Chambers, John C.; Chandak, Giriraj R.; Chang, Yen-Pei C.; Charchar, Fadi J.; Chaturvedi, Nish; Shin Cho, Yoon; Clarke, Robert; Collins, Francis S.; Collins, Rory; Connell, John M.; Cooper, Jackie A.; Cooper, Matthew N.; Cooper, Richard S.; Corsi, Anna Maria; Dörr, Marcus; Dahgam, Santosh; Danesh, John; Smith, George Davey; Day, Ian N. M.; Deloukas, Panos; Denniff, Matthew; Dominiczak, Anna F.; Dong, Yanbin; Doumatey, Ayo; Elliott, Paul; Elosua, Roberto; Erdmann, Jeanette; Eyheramendy, Susana; Farrall, Martin; Fava, Cristiano; Forrester, Terrence; Fowkes, F. Gerald R.; Fox, Ervin R.; Frayling, Timothy M.; Galan, Pilar

    2016-01-01

    Reduced glomerular filtration rate defines chronic kidney disease and is associated with cardiovascular and all-cause mortality. We conducted a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies for estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), combining data across 133,413 individuals with replication in up to 42,166 individuals. We identify 24 new and confirm 29 previously identified loci. Of these 53 loci, 19 associate with eGFR among individuals with diabetes. Using bioinformatics, we show that identified genes at eGFR loci are enriched for expression in kidney tissues and in pathways relevant for kidney development and transmembrane transporter activity, kidney structure, and regulation of glucose metabolism. Chromatin state mapping and DNase I hypersensitivity analyses across adult tissues demonstrate preferential mapping of associated variants to regulatory regions in kidney but not extra-renal tissues. These findings suggest that genetic determinants of eGFR are mediated largely through direct effects within the kidney and highlight important cell types and biological pathways. PMID:26831199

  16. Discrimination between biologically relevant calcium phosphate phases by surface-analytical techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleine-Boymann, Matthias; Rohnke, Marcus; Henss, Anja; Peppler, Klaus; Sann, Joachim; Janek, Juergen

    2014-08-01

    The spatially resolved phase identification of biologically relevant calcium phosphate phases (CPPs) in bone tissue is essential for the elucidation of bone remodeling mechanisms and for the diagnosis of bone diseases. Analytical methods with high spatial resolution for the discrimination between chemically quite close phases are rare. Therefore the applicability of state-of-the-art ToF-SIMS, XPS and EDX as chemically specific techniques was investigated. The eight CPPs hydroxyapatite (HAP), β-tricalcium phosphate (β-TCP), α-tricalcium phosphate (α-TCP), octacalcium phosphate (OCP), dicalcium phosphate dihydrate (DCPD), dicalcium phosphate (DCP), monocalcium phosphate (MCP) and amorphous calcium phosphate (ACP) were either commercial materials in high purity or synthesized by ourselves. The phase purity was proven by XRD analysis. All of the eight CPPs show different mass spectra and the phases can be discriminated by applying the principal component analysis method to the mass spectrometric data. The Ca/P ratios of all phosphates were determined by XPS and EDX. With both methods some CPPs can be distinguished, but the obtained Ca/P ratios deviate systematically from their theoretical values. It is necessary in any case to determine a calibration curve, respectively the ZAF values, from appropriate standards. In XPS also the O(1s)-satellite signals are correlated to the CPPs composition. Angle resolved and long-term XPS measurements of HAP clearly prove that there is no phosphate excess at the surface. Decomposition due to X-ray irradiation has not been observed.

  17. Multiple mechanisms for critical behavior in the biologically relevant phase of lecithin bilayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nagle, John F.; Petrache, Horia I.; Gouliaev, Nikolai; Tristram-Nagle, Stephanie; Liu, Yufeng; Suter, Robert M.; Gawrisch, Klaus

    1998-12-01

    Lipid bilayer membranes manifest critical behavior in the lamellar D spacing observed by x-ray and neutron diffraction as the main phase transition is approached from the biologically relevant high temperature phase. The freezing out of conformational disorder of the hydrocarbon chains drives the main transition, but how this causes critical behavior of D(T) has been an interesting puzzle and various models are under investigation. This paper presents x-ray scattering and NMR data to test the various models. One model involves the straightforward lengthening of hydrocarbon chains as TM is approached, but it is shown that this accounts only for about half the anomalous increase in D. Another model of fluctuation induced expansion of the water region is shown to be inconsistent with two kinds of data. The first inconsistency is the lack of an increase in the Caillé fluctuation parameter η1. The second inconsistency is with D(T) data taken under osmotic pressure. Accurate simulations are employed to predict the theoretical values. A third model considers that the water spacing could expand because other interactions between bilayers may change as TM is approached, but there is no quantitative support for this model at present. A fourth model involving expansion of the headgroup region is tested with NMR data; results are qualitatively consistent but quantitatively inconclusive. While the precise mixture of models is still unresolved, it is concluded that multiple mechanisms must be operating in this critical regime.

  18. The relevance of nanoscale biological fragments for ice nucleation in clouds

    PubMed Central

    O′Sullivan, D.; Murray, B. J.; Ross, J. F.; Whale, T. F.; Price, H. C.; Atkinson, J. D.; Umo, N. S.; Webb, M. E.

    2015-01-01

    Most studies of the role of biological entities as atmospheric ice-nucleating particles have focused on relatively rare supermicron particles such as bacterial cells, fungal spores and pollen grains. However, it is not clear that there are sufficient numbers of these particles in the atmosphere to strongly influence clouds. Here we show that the ice-nucleating activity of a fungus from the ubiquitous genus Fusarium is related to the presence of nanometre-scale particles which are far more numerous, and therefore potentially far more important for cloud glaciation than whole intact spores or hyphae. In addition, we quantify the ice-nucleating activity of nano-ice nucleating particles (nano-INPs) washed off pollen and also show that nano-INPs are present in a soil sample. Based on these results, we suggest that there is a reservoir of biological nano-INPs present in the environment which may, for example, become aerosolised in association with fertile soil dust particles. PMID:25626414

  19. The relevance of nanoscale biological fragments for ice nucleation in clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O‧Sullivan, D.; Murray, B. J.; Ross, J. F.; Whale, T. F.; Price, H. C.; Atkinson, J. D.; Umo, N. S.; Webb, M. E.

    2015-01-01

    Most studies of the role of biological entities as atmospheric ice-nucleating particles have focused on relatively rare supermicron particles such as bacterial cells, fungal spores and pollen grains. However, it is not clear that there are sufficient numbers of these particles in the atmosphere to strongly influence clouds. Here we show that the ice-nucleating activity of a fungus from the ubiquitous genus Fusarium is related to the presence of nanometre-scale particles which are far more numerous, and therefore potentially far more important for cloud glaciation than whole intact spores or hyphae. In addition, we quantify the ice-nucleating activity of nano-ice nucleating particles (nano-INPs) washed off pollen and also show that nano-INPs are present in a soil sample. Based on these results, we suggest that there is a reservoir of biological nano-INPs present in the environment which may, for example, become aerosolised in association with fertile soil dust particles.

  20. Collisions between low-energy electrons and small polyatomic targets of biological relevance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hargreaves, Leigh

    2016-05-01

    Over the last decade, cross section measurements and calculations for DNA prototype molecules have received significant attention from the collisions community, due to the potential applications of this data in modelling electron transport through biological matter with a view to improving radiation dosimetry. Such data are additionally interesting from a fundamental aspect, as small carbon-based molecules are ideal targets for considering effects including target conformation, long-range dynamical interactions and coupling effects between the various degrees of freedom on the scattering properties of the target. At the California State University Fullerton, we have made a series of measurements of the elastic, vibrationally inelastic and electronically inelastic cross sections for a variety of small polyatomic targets, including water and the basic alcohols, ethylene, toluene and several fluorinated alkanes. These processes are important in a range of applications, primarily for modelling electron transport and thermalization, and energy deposition to a biological media. The data were obtained using a high resolution electron energy-loss spectrometer, operating in a crossed beam configuration with a moveable aperture gas source. The gas source design facilitates both an expedient and highly accurate method of removing background signal, and removes uncertainties from the data due to uncertainties in the beam profile. We have also performed scattering calculations employing the Schwinger Multichannel method, in collaboration with the California institute of technology, to compare with our measurements. In this talk, I will present an overview of our recent data and future research plans.

  1. Development of a biologically relevant calcium phosphate substrate for sum frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    McGall, Sarah J; Davies, Paul B; Neivandt, David J

    2005-10-01

    A novel biologically relevant composite substrate has been prepared consisting of a calcium phosphate (CaP) layer formed by magnetron sputter-coating from a hydroxyapatite (HA) target onto a gold-coated silicon substrate. The CaP layer is intended to mimic tooth and bone surfaces and allows polymers used in oral care to be deposited in a procedure analogous to that used for dental surfaces. The polymer cetyl dimethicone copolyol (CDC) was deposited onto the CaP surface of the substrate by Langmuir Blodgett deposition, and the structure of the adsorbed layer was investigated by the surface specific technique of sum frequency generation (SFG) vibrational spectroscopy. The gold sublayer provides enhancement of the SFG signal arising from the polymer but plays no part in the adsorption of the polymer. The surface morphology of the substrate was investigated using SEM and AFM. The surface roughness was commensurate with that of the thermally evaporated gold sublayer and uniform over areas of at least 36 mum(2). The chemical composition of the CaP-coated surface was determined by FTIR and TOF-SIMS. It was concluded that the surface is primarily calcium phosphate present as a mixture of amorphous, non-hydroxylated phases rather than solely stoichiometric hydroxyapatite. The SFG spectra from CDC on CaP were closely similar, both in resonance wavenumbers and in their relative intensities, with spectra of thin films of CDC recorded directly on gold. Application of previous analysis of the spectra of CDC on gold therefore enabled interpretation of the polymer orientation and conformation on the CaP substrate. PMID:16834276

  2. Epigenetic regulation of EFEMP1 in prostate cancer: biological relevance and clinical potential

    PubMed Central

    Almeida, Mafalda; Costa, Vera L; Costa, Natália R; Ramalho-Carvalho, João; Baptista, Tiago; Ribeiro, Franclim R; Paulo, Paula; Teixeira, Manuel R; Oliveira, Jorge; Lothe, Ragnhild A; Lind, Guro E; Henrique, Rui; Jerónimo, Carmen

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetic alterations are common in prostate cancer (PCa) and seem to contribute decisively to its initiation and progression. Moreover, aberrant promoter methylation is a promising biomarker for non-invasive screening. Herein, we sought to characterize EFEMP1 as biomarker for PCa, unveiling its biological relevance in prostate carcinogenesis. Microarray analyses of treated PCa cell lines and primary tissues enabled the selection of differentially methylated genes, among which EFEMP1 was further validated by MSP and bisulfite sequencing. Assessment of biomarker performance was accomplished by qMSP. Expression analysis of EFEMP1 and characterization of histone marks were performed in tissue samples and cancer cell lines to determine the impact of epigenetic mechanisms on EFEMP1 transcriptional regulation. Phenotypic assays, using transfected cell lines, permitted the evaluation of EFEMP1’s role in PCa development. EFEMP1 methylation assay discriminated PCa from normal prostate tissue (NPT; P < 0.001, Kruskall–Wallis test) and renal and bladder cancers (96% sensitivity and 98% specificity). EFEMP1 transcription levels inversely correlated with promoter methylation and histone deacetylation, suggesting that both epigenetic mechanisms are involved in gene regulation. Phenotypic assays showed that EFEMP1 de novo expression reduces malignant phenotype of PCa cells. EFEMP1 promoter methylation is prevalent in PCa and accurately discriminates PCa from non-cancerous prostate tissues and other urological neoplasms. This epigenetic alteration occurs early in prostate carcinogenesis and, in association with histone deacetylation, progressively leads to gene down-regulation, fostering cell proliferation, invasion and evasion of apoptosis. PMID:25211630

  3. Dynamic clustering threshold reduces conformer ensemble size while maintaining a biologically relevant ensemble.

    PubMed

    Yongye, Austin B; Bender, Andreas; Martínez-Mayorga, Karina

    2010-08-01

    Representing the 3D structures of ligands in virtual screenings via multi-conformer ensembles can be computationally intensive, especially for compounds with a large number of rotatable bonds. Thus, reducing the size of multi-conformer databases and the number of query conformers, while simultaneously reproducing the bioactive conformer with good accuracy, is of crucial interest. While clustering and RMSD filtering methods are employed in existing conformer generators, the novelty of this work is the inclusion of a clustering scheme (NMRCLUST) that does not require a user-defined cut-off value. This algorithm simultaneously optimizes the number and the average spread of the clusters. Here we describe and test four inter-dependent approaches for selecting computer-generated conformers, namely: OMEGA, NMRCLUST, RMS filtering and averaged-RMS filtering. The bioactive conformations of 65 selected ligands were extracted from the corresponding protein:ligand complexes from the Protein Data Bank, including eight ligands that adopted dissimilar bound conformations within different receptors. We show that NMRCLUST can be employed to further filter OMEGA-generated conformers while maintaining biological relevance of the ensemble. It was observed that NMRCLUST (containing on average 10 times fewer conformers per compound) performed nearly as well as OMEGA, and both outperformed RMS filtering and averaged-RMS filtering in terms of identifying the bioactive conformations with excellent and good matches (0.5 < RMSD < 1.0 A). Furthermore, we propose thresholds for OMEGA root-mean square filtering depending on the number of rotors in a compound: 0.8, 1.0 and 1.4 for structures with low (1-4), medium (5-9) and high (10-15) numbers of rotatable bonds, respectively. The protocol employed is general and can be applied to reduce the number of conformers in multi-conformer compound collections and alleviate the complexity of downstream data processing in virtual screening experiments

  4. Solid-supported cross-metathesis and a formal alkane metathesis for the generation of biologically relevant molecules.

    PubMed

    Méndez, Luciana; Mata, Ernesto G

    2015-02-01

    Solid-phase synthetic strategies toward the generation of libraries of biologically relevant molecules were developed using olefin cross-metathesis as a key step. It is remarkably the formal alkane metathesis based on a one-pot, microwave-assisted, ruthenium-catalyzed cross-metathesis and reduction to obtain Csp3-Csp3 linkages. PMID:25569690

  5. Additives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smalheer, C. V.

    1973-01-01

    The chemistry of lubricant additives is discussed to show what the additives are chemically and what functions they perform in the lubrication of various kinds of equipment. Current theories regarding the mode of action of lubricant additives are presented. The additive groups discussed include the following: (1) detergents and dispersants, (2) corrosion inhibitors, (3) antioxidants, (4) viscosity index improvers, (5) pour point depressants, and (6) antifouling agents.

  6. Biological Production of a Hydrocarbon Fuel Intermediate Polyhydroxybutyrate (Phb) from a Process Relevant Lignocellulosic Derived Sugar

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Wei; Mohagheghi, Ali; Mittal, Ashutosh; Pilath, Heidi; Johnson, David K.

    2015-03-22

    PHAs are synthesized by many microorganisms to serve as intracellular carbon storage molecules. In some bacterial strains, PHB can account for up to 80% of cell mass. In addition to its application in the packaging sector, PHB also has great potential as an intermediate in the production of hydrocarbon fuels. PHB can be thermally depolymerized and decarboxylated to propene which can be upgraded to hydrocarbon fuels via commercial oligomerization technologies. In recent years a great effort has been made in bacterial production of PHB, yet the production cost of the polymer is still much higher than conventional petrochemical plastics. The high cost of PHB is because the cost of the substrates can account for as much as half of the total product cost in large scale fermentation. Thus searching for cheaper and better substrates is very necessary for PHB production. In this study, we demonstrate production of PHB by Cupriavidus necator from a process relevant lignocellulosic derived sugar stream, i.e., saccharified hydrolysate slurry from pretreated corn stover. Good cell growth was observed on slurry saccharified with advanced enzymes and 40~60% of PHB was accumulated in the cells. The mechanism of inhibition in the toxic hydrolysate generated by pretreatment and saccharification of biomass, will be discussed.

  7. The autoxidation and proton dissociation constants of tertiary diphosphines: relevance to biological activity.

    PubMed

    Berners-Price, S J; Norman, R E; Sadler, P J

    1987-11-01

    The pKas and autoxidation properties of a number of diphosphines which exhibit varying degrees of antitumor and cytotoxic activity were investigated. Titration by HClO4 in CH3NO2 was used to determine pKas of the following diphosphines: R2P(CH2)nPR'2, where for R = R' = Ph, n = 1, 2, and 3 (dppm, dppe, and dppp respectively); for R = R' = Et, n = 2 (depe); for R = Ph, R' = Et, n = 2 (eppe); and for cis and trans Ph2PCH = CHPPh2 (dppey). The difference between the first and second protonation constants decreases as the length of the carbon chain between the two phosphorus centers increases. Unsaturation in the carbon chain lowers pKas. -PEt2 centers are apparently more basic than -PPh2 centers. Apart from electrostatic effects, the protonation of a given phosphine center appears to be independent of the substituents at the second phosphine center. The autoxidation reactions of dppm, dppe, dppp, depe, and cis-dppey were studied in a variety of solvents by 31P NMR spectroscopy. The ethyl-substituted diphosphines were much more rapidly oxidized than the phenyl-substituted, and the pathways of autoxidation differed. Generally, the phenyl-substituted diphosphines gave only mono- and dioxides, while the ethyl-substituted diphosphines additionally gave phosphinites and other oxidation products. The relevance of the autoxidation reactivity and the pKas to the contrasting antitumor activity of these diphosphines is discussed. PMID:2828542

  8. "Evo in the News": A Pedagogical Tool to Enhance Students' Perceptions of the Relevance of Evolutionary Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Infanti, Lynn M.

    2012-01-01

    This investigation evaluated the effects of the use of the pedagogical tool "Evo in the News" on the attitudes toward and knowledge of biological evolution in a sample of undergraduate non-major biology students at a large, private research university. In addition, this study looked at the initial attitudes of the students and their…

  9. Enhanced stability and local structure in biologically relevant amorphous materials containing pyrophosphate

    SciTech Connect

    Slater, Colin; Laurencin, Danielle; Burnell, Victoria; Smith, Mark E.; Grover, Liam M.; Hriljac, Joseph A.; Wright, Adrian J.

    2012-10-25

    There is increasing evidence that amorphous inorganic materials play a key role in biomineralisation in many organisms, however the inherent instability of synthetic analogues in the absence of the complex in vivo matrix limits their study and clinical exploitation. To address this, we report here an approach that enhances long-term stability to >1 year of biologically relevant amorphous metal phosphates, in the absence of any complex stabilizers, by utilizing pyrophosphates (P{sub 2}O{sub 7}{sup 4-}); species themselves ubiquitous in vivo. Ambient temperature precipitation reactions were employed to synthesise amorphous Ca{sub 2}P{sub 2}O{sub 7}.nH{sub 2}O and Sr{sub 2}P{sub 2}O{sub 7}.nH{sub 2}O (3.8 < n < 4.2) and their stability and structure were investigated. Pair distribution functions (PDF) derived from synchrotron X-ray data indicated a lack of structural order beyond 8 {angstrom} in both phases, with this local order found to resemble crystalline analogues. Further studies, including {sup 1}H and {sup 31}P solid state NMR, suggest the unusually high stability of these purely inorganic amorphous phases is partly due to disorder in the P-O-P bond angles within the P{sub 2}O{sub 7} units, which impede crystallization, and to water molecules, which are involved in H-bonds of various strengths within the structures and hamper the formation of an ordered network. In situ high temperature powder X-ray diffraction data indicated that the amorphous nature of both phases surprisingly persisted to 450 C. Further NMR and TGA studies found that above ambient temperature some water molecules reacted with P{sub 2}O{sub 7} anions, leading to the hydrolysis of some P-O-P linkages and the formation of HPO{sub 4}{sup 2-} anions within the amorphous matrix. The latter anions then recombined into P{sub 2}O{sub 7} ions at higher temperatures prior to crystallization. Together, these findings provide important new materials with unexplored potential for enzyme

  10. "Evo in the News:" Understanding Evolution and Students' Attitudes toward the Relevance of Evolutionary Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Infanti, Lynn M.; Wiles, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    This investigation evaluated the effects of exposure to the "Evo in the News" section of the "Understanding Evolution" website on students' attitudes toward biological evolution in undergraduates in a mixed-majors introductory biology course at Syracuse University. Students' attitudes toward evolution and changes therein were…

  11. C-MAF oncogene dysregulation in multiple myeloma: frequency and biological relevance.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Thomas; Knudsen, Lene Meldgaard; Dahl, Inger Marie S; Johnsen, Hans Erik

    2003-10-01

    To investigate the frequency and possible biological consequences of c-maf dysregulation, we designed c-maf and IL-4 real-time RT-PCR assays for determination of c-maf and IL-4 mRNA levels. Using the c-maf real-time RT-PCR assay, we tested a panel of 14 B-cell lines, 135 diagnostic bone marrow (BM) samples from patients with multiple myeloma and 10 BM samples from normal donors. In B cell lines and flowsorted CD38++/CD19-/CD56++ myeloma plasma cells (N = 14) the c-maf/GAPDH and IL-4/GAPDH ratios were determined simultaneously using real time RT-PCR. All B cell lines used in the study were characterized by flow cytometry and tested for the presence of Ebstein-Barr virus (EBV). B-cell lines, that were PCR negative for EBV and had a phenotype typical for primary myeloma cells, expressed medium to high levels of c-maf mRNA. However, all EBV PCR positive cell lines, showed a more immature phenotype, lacked expression of aberrant surface markers and contained very low levels of c-maf mRNA. In 4.4% (6/135) of MM patients tested, a c-maf mRNA level comparable to the cell line RPMI 8226 containing at (16:22), translocation was found. In addition, all c-maf positive myeloma cell lines and CD38++/CD19-/CD56++ myeloma plasma cells tested were IL-4 negative. In conclusion, high levels of c-maf mRNA were observed in "true MM cell lines" and 4.4% of MM patients. Further, c-maf dysregulation in myeloma plasma cells did not cause induction of IL-4 transcription. PMID:14692531

  12. Lateral Hypothalamus GABAergic Neurons Modulate Consummatory Behaviors Regardless of the Caloric Content or Biological Relevance of the Consumed Stimuli.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Montserrat; Olney, Jeffrey J; Burnham, Nathan W; Mazzone, Christopher M; Lowery-Gionta, Emily G; Pleil, Kristen E; Kash, Thomas L; Thiele, Todd E

    2016-05-01

    It was recently reported that activation of a subset of lateral hypothalamus (LH) GABAergic neurons induced both appetitive (food-seeking) and consummatory (eating) behaviors in vGat-ires-cre mice, while inhibition or deletion of GABAergic neurons blunted these behaviors. As food and caloric-dense liquid solutions were used, the data reported suggest that these LH GABAergic neurons may modulate behaviors that function to maintain homeostatic caloric balance. Here we report that chemogenetic activation of this GABAergic population in vGat-ires-cre mice increased consummatory behavior directed at any available stimulus, including those entailing calories (food, sucrose, and ethanol), those that do not (saccharin and water), and those lacking biological relevance (wood). Chemogenetic inhibition of these neurons attenuated consummatory behaviors. These data indicate that LH GABAergic neurons modulate consummatory behaviors regardless of the caloric content or biological relevance of the consumed stimuli. PMID:26442599

  13. Carboxylate-Assisted Iridium-Catalyzed C-H Amination of Arenes with Biologically Relevant Alkyl Azides.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tao; Hu, Xuejiao; Wang, Zhen; Yang, Tiantian; Sun, Hao; Li, Guigen; Lu, Hongjian

    2016-02-24

    An iridium-catalyzed C-H amination of arenes with a wide substrate scope is reported. Benzamides with electron-donating and -withdrawing groups and linear, branched, and cyclic alkyl azides are all applicable. Cesium carboxylate is crucial for both reactivity and regioselectivity of the reactions. Many biologically relevant molecules, such as amino acid, peptide, steroid, sugar, and thymidine derivatives can be introduced to arenes with high yields and 100 % chiral retention. PMID:26712274

  14. V-type nerve agents phosphonylate ubiquitin at biologically relevant lysine residues and induce intramolecular cyclization by an isopeptide bond.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Christian; Breyer, Felicitas; Blum, Marc-Michael; Thiermann, Horst; Worek, Franz; John, Harald

    2014-08-01

    Toxic organophosphorus compounds (e.g., pesticides and nerve agents) are known to react with nucleophilic side chains of different amino acids (phosphylation), thus forming adducts with endogenous proteins. Most often binding to serine, tyrosine, or threonine residues is described as being of relevance for toxicological effects (e.g., acetylcholinesterase and neuropathy target esterase) or as biomarkers for post-exposure analysis (verification, e.g., albumin and butyrylcholinesterase). Accordingly, identification of novel protein targets might be beneficial for a better understanding of the toxicology of these compounds, revealing new bioanalytical verification tools, and improving knowledge on chemical reactivity. In the present study, we investigated the reaction of ubiquitin (Ub) with the V-type nerve agents Chinese VX, Russian VX, and VX in vitro. Ub is a ubiquitous protein with a mass of 8564.8 Da present in the extra- and intracellular space that plays an important physiological role in several essential processes (e.g., proteasomal degradation, DNA repair, protein turnover, and endocytosis). Reaction products were analyzed by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time-of-flight- mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) and μ-high-performance liquid chromatography online coupled to UV-detection and electrospray ionization MS (μHPLC-UV/ESI MS). Our results originally document that a complex mixture of at least mono-, di, and triphosphonylated Ub adducts was produced. Surprisingly, peptide mass fingerprint analysis in combination with MALDI and ESI MS/MS revealed that phosphonylation occurred with high selectivity in at least 6 of 7 surface-exposed lysine residues that are essential for the biological function of Ub. These reaction products were found not to age. In addition, we herein report for the first time that phosphonylation induced intramolecular cyclization by formation of an isopeptide bond between the ε-amino group of a formerly phosphonylated

  15. Teleology then and now: the question of Kant's relevance for contemporary controversies over function in biology.

    PubMed

    Zammito, John

    2006-12-01

    'Naturalism' is the aspiration of contemporary philosophy of biology, and Kant simply cannot be refashioned into a naturalist. Instead, epistemological 'deflation' was the decisive feature of Kant's treatment of the 'biomedical' science in his day, so it is not surprising that this might attract some philosophers of science to him today. A certain sense of impasse in the contemporary 'function talk' seems to motivate renewed interest in Kant. Kant--drawing on his eighteenth-century predecessors-provided a discerning and powerful characterization of what biologists had to explain in organic form. His difference from the rest is that he opined that it was impossible to explain it. Its 'inscrutability' was intrinsic. The third Critique essentially proposed the reduction of biology to a kind of pre-scientific descriptivism, doomed never to attain authentic scientificity, to have its 'Newton of the blade of grass'. By contrast, for Locke, and a fortiori for Buffon and his followers, 'intrinsic purposiveness' was a fact of the matter about concrete biological phenomena; the features of internal self-regulation were hypotheses arising out of actual research practice. The difference comes most vividly to light once we recognize Kant's distinction of the concept of organism from the concept of life. If biology must conceptualize self-organization as actual in the world, Kant's regulative/constitutive distinction is pointless in practice and the (naturalist) philosophy of biology has urgent work to undertake for which Kant turns out not to be very helpful. PMID:17157770

  16. COMPARISON OF QUANTUM MECHANICAL METHODS TO COMPUTE THE BIOLOGICALLY RELEVANT REACTIVITIES OF CYCLOPENTA POLYCYCLIC AROMATIC HYDROCARBONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    In computational studies to understand the interaction of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHS) with biomolecular systems, the semi-empirical method AM1 has been used to determine the geometry of the PAH, its metabolites and relevant intermediates. umber of studies have shown t...

  17. Genetic analysis of polymorphisms in biologically relevant candidate genes in patients with abdominal aortic aneurysms

    PubMed Central

    Ogata, Toru; Shibamura, Hidenori; Tromp, Gerard; Sinha, Moumita; Goddard, Katrina A. B.; Sakalihasan, Natzi; Limet, Raymond; MacKean, Gerald L.; Arthur, Claudette; Sueda, Taijiro; Land, Susan; Kuivaniemi, Helena

    2005-01-01

    Background Abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs) are characterized by histologic signs of chronic inflammation, destructive remodeling of extracellular matrix, and depletion of vascular smooth muscle cells. We investigated the process of extracellular matrix remodeling by performing a genetic association study with polymorphisms in the genes for matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMPs), and structural extracellular matrix molecules in AAA. Our hypothesis was that genetic variations in one or more of these genes contribute to greater or lesser activity of these gene products, and thereby contribute to susceptibility for developing AAAs. Methods DNA samples from 812 unrelated white subject (AAA, n = 387; controls, n = 425) were genotyped for 14 polymorphisms in 13 different candidate genes: MMP1(nt−1607), MMP2(nt−955), MMP3(nt−1612), MMP9(nt−1562), MMP10(nt+180), MMP12(nt−82), MMP13(nt−77), TIMP1(nt+434), TIMP1(rs2070584), TIMP2(rs2009196), TIMP3(nt−1296), TGFB1(nt−509), ELN(nt+422), and COL3A1(nt+581). Odds ratios and P values adjusted for gender and country of origin using logistic regression and stratified by family history of AAA were calculated to test for association between genotype and disease status. Haplotype analysis was carried out for the two TIMP1 polymorphisms in male subjects. Results Analyses with one polymorphism per test without interactions showed an association with the two TIMP1 gene polymorphisms (nt+434, P = .0047; rs2070584, P = .015) in male subjects without a family history of AAA. The association remained significant when analyzing TIMP1 haplotypes (χ2 P = .014 and empirical P = .009). In addition, we found a significant interaction between the polymorphism and gender for MMP10 (P = .037) in cases without a family history of AAA, as well as between the polymorphism and country of origin for ELN (P = .0169) and TIMP3 (P = .0023) in cases with a family history of AAA. Conclusions These

  18. Determination of the Biologically Relevant Sampling Depth for Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecological Risk Assessments (Final Report)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This technical paper provides defensible approximations for what the depth of the biologically active zone, or “biotic zone” is within certain environments. The methods used in this study differ somewhat between Part 1 (Terrestrial Biotic Zone) and Part 2 (Aquatic Biotic Zone). ...

  19. Soluble Epidermal Growth Factor Receptors (sEGFRs) in Cancer: Biological Aspects and Clinical Relevance

    PubMed Central

    Maramotti, Sally; Paci, Massimiliano; Manzotti, Gloria; Rapicetta, Cristian; Gugnoni, Mila; Galeone, Carla; Cesario, Alfredo; Lococo, Filippo

    2016-01-01

    The identification of molecules that can reliably detect the presence of a tumor or predict its behavior is one of the biggest challenges of research in cancer biology. Biological fluids are intriguing mediums, containing many molecules that express the individual health status and, accordingly, may be useful in establishing the potential risk of cancer, defining differential diagnosis and prognosis, predicting the response to treatment, and monitoring the disease progression. The existence of circulating soluble growth factor receptors (sGFRs) deriving from their membrane counterparts has stimulated the interest of researchers to investigate the use of such molecules as potential cancer biomarkers. But what are the origins of circulating sGFRs? Are they naturally occurring molecules or tumor-derived products? Among these, the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is a cell-surface molecule significantly involved in cancer development and progression; it can be processed into biological active soluble isoforms (sEGFR). We have carried out an extensive review of the currently available literature on the sEGFRs and their mechanisms of regulation and biological function, with the intent to clarify the role of these molecules in cancer (and other pathological conditions) and, on the basis of the retrieved evidences, speculate about their potential use in the clinical setting. PMID:27104520

  20. Soluble Epidermal Growth Factor Receptors (sEGFRs) in Cancer: Biological Aspects and Clinical Relevance.

    PubMed

    Maramotti, Sally; Paci, Massimiliano; Manzotti, Gloria; Rapicetta, Cristian; Gugnoni, Mila; Galeone, Carla; Cesario, Alfredo; Lococo, Filippo

    2016-01-01

    The identification of molecules that can reliably detect the presence of a tumor or predict its behavior is one of the biggest challenges of research in cancer biology. Biological fluids are intriguing mediums, containing many molecules that express the individual health status and, accordingly, may be useful in establishing the potential risk of cancer, defining differential diagnosis and prognosis, predicting the response to treatment, and monitoring the disease progression. The existence of circulating soluble growth factor receptors (sGFRs) deriving from their membrane counterparts has stimulated the interest of researchers to investigate the use of such molecules as potential cancer biomarkers. But what are the origins of circulating sGFRs? Are they naturally occurring molecules or tumor-derived products? Among these, the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is a cell-surface molecule significantly involved in cancer development and progression; it can be processed into biological active soluble isoforms (sEGFR). We have carried out an extensive review of the currently available literature on the sEGFRs and their mechanisms of regulation and biological function, with the intent to clarify the role of these molecules in cancer (and other pathological conditions) and, on the basis of the retrieved evidences, speculate about their potential use in the clinical setting. PMID:27104520

  1. Bayesian spatiotemporal analysis of zero-inflated biological population density data by a delta-normal spatiotemporal additive model.

    PubMed

    Arcuti, Simona; Pollice, Alessio; Ribecco, Nunziata; D'Onghia, Gianfranco

    2016-03-01

    We evaluate the spatiotemporal changes in the density of a particular species of crustacean known as deep-water rose shrimp, Parapenaeus longirostris, based on biological sample data collected during trawl surveys carried out from 1995 to 2006 as part of the international project MEDITS (MEDiterranean International Trawl Surveys). As is the case for many biological variables, density data are continuous and characterized by unusually large amounts of zeros, accompanied by a skewed distribution of the remaining values. Here we analyze the normalized density data by a Bayesian delta-normal semiparametric additive model including the effects of covariates, using penalized regression with low-rank thin-plate splines for nonlinear spatial and temporal effects. Modeling the zero and nonzero values by two joint processes, as we propose in this work, allows to obtain great flexibility and easily handling of complex likelihood functions, avoiding inaccurate statistical inferences due to misclassification of the high proportion of exact zeros in the model. Bayesian model estimation is obtained by Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations, suitably specifying the complex likelihood function of the zero-inflated density data. The study highlights relevant nonlinear spatial and temporal effects and the influence of the annual Mediterranean oscillations index and of the sea surface temperature on the distribution of the deep-water rose shrimp density. PMID:26418888

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Inorganic concepts relevant to metal binding, activity, and toxicity in a biological system

    SciTech Connect

    Hoeschele, J.D. . Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research Div.); Turner, J.E.; England, M.W. )

    1990-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review selected physical and inorganic concepts and factors which might be important in assessing and/or understanding the fact and disposition of a metal system in a biological environment. Hopefully, such inquiries will ultimately permit us to understand, rationalize, and predict differences and trends in biological effects as a function of the basic nature of a metal system and, in optimal cases, serve as input to a system of guidelines for the notion of Chemical Dosimetry.'' The plan of this paper is to first review, in general terms, the basic principles of the Crystal Field Theory (CFT), a unifying theory of bonding in metal complexes. This will provide the necessary theoretical background for the subsequent discussion of selected concepts and factors. 21 refs., 7 figs., 6 tabs.

  5. Modeling oxygen dissolution and biological uptake during pulse oxygen additions in oenological fermentations.

    PubMed

    Saa, Pedro A; Moenne, M Isabel; Pérez-Correa, J Ricardo; Agosin, Eduardo

    2012-09-01

    Discrete oxygen additions during oenological fermentations can have beneficial effects both on yeast performance and on the resulting wine quality. However, the amount and time of the additions must be carefully chosen to avoid detrimental effects. So far, most oxygen additions are carried out empirically, since the oxygen dynamics in the fermenting must are not completely understood. To efficiently manage oxygen dosage, we developed a mass balance model of the kinetics of oxygen dissolution and biological uptake during wine fermentation on a laboratory scale. Model calibration was carried out employing a novel dynamic desorption-absorption cycle based on two optical sensors able to generate enough experimental data for the precise determination of oxygen uptake and volumetric mass transfer coefficients. A useful system for estimating the oxygen solubility in defined medium and musts was also developed and incorporated into the mass balance model. Results indicated that several factors, such as the fermentation phase, wine composition, mixing and carbon dioxide concentration, must be considered when performing oxygen addition during oenological fermentations. The present model will help develop better oxygen addition policies in wine fermentations on an industrial scale. PMID:22349928

  6. Consistent Robustness Analysis (CRA) Identifies Biologically Relevant Properties of Regulatory Network Models

    PubMed Central

    Saithong, Treenut; Painter, Kevin J.; Millar, Andrew J.

    2010-01-01

    Background A number of studies have previously demonstrated that “goodness of fit” is insufficient in reliably classifying the credibility of a biological model. Robustness and/or sensitivity analysis is commonly employed as a secondary method for evaluating the suitability of a particular model. The results of such analyses invariably depend on the particular parameter set tested, yet many parameter values for biological models are uncertain. Results Here, we propose a novel robustness analysis that aims to determine the “common robustness” of the model with multiple, biologically plausible parameter sets, rather than the local robustness for a particular parameter set. Our method is applied to two published models of the Arabidopsis circadian clock (the one-loop [1] and two-loop [2] models). The results reinforce current findings suggesting the greater reliability of the two-loop model and pinpoint the crucial role of TOC1 in the circadian network. Conclusions Consistent Robustness Analysis can indicate both the relative plausibility of different models and also the critical components and processes controlling each model. PMID:21179566

  7. The relevance and potential roles of microphysiological systems in biology and medicine

    PubMed Central

    Wikswo, John P.

    2014-01-01

    Microphysiological systems (MPS), consisting of interacting organs-on-chips or tissue-engineered, 3D organ constructs that use human cells, present an opportunity to bring new tools to biology, medicine, pharmacology, physiology, and toxicology. This issue of Experimental Biology and Medicine describes the ongoing development of MPS that can serve as in vitro models for bone and cartilage, brain, gastrointestinal tract, lung, liver, microvasculature, reproductive tract, skeletal muscle, and skin. Related topics addressed here are the interconnection of organs-on-chips to support physiologically based pharmacokinetics and drug discovery and screening, and the microscale technologies that regulate stem cell differentiation. The initial motivation for creating MPS was to increase the speed, efficiency, and safety of pharmaceutical development and testing, paying particular regard to the fact that neither monolayer monocultures of immortal or primary cell lines nor animal studies can adequately recapitulate the dynamics of drug-organ, drug-drug, and drug-organ-organ interactions in humans. Other applications include studies of the effect of environmental toxins on humans, identification, characterization, and neutralization of chemical and biological weapons, controlled studies of the microbiome and infectious disease that cannot be conducted in humans, controlled differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells into specific adult cellular phenotypes, and studies of the dynamics of metabolism and signaling within and between human organs. The technical challenges are being addressed by many investigators, and in the process, it seems highly likely that significant progress will be made toward providing more physiologically realistic alternatives to monolayer monocultures or whole animal studies. The effectiveness of this effort will be determined in part by how easy the constructs are to use, how well they function, how accurately they recapitulate and report human

  8. Biologically relevant 3D tumor arrays: treatment response and the importance of stromal partners

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rizvi, Imran; Celli, Jonathan P.; Xu, Feng; Evans, Conor L.; Abu-Yousif, Adnan O.; Muzikansky, Alona; Elrington, Stefan A.; Pogue, Brian W.; Finkelstein, Dianne M.; Demirci, Utkan; Hasan, Tayyaba

    2011-02-01

    The development and translational potential of therapeutic strategies for cancer is limited, in part, by a lack of biological models that capture important aspects of tumor growth and treatment response. It is also becoming increasingly evident that no single treatment will be curative for this complex disease. Rationally-designed combination regimens that impact multiple targets provide the best hope of significantly improving clinical outcomes for cancer patients. Rapidly identifying treatments that cooperatively enhance treatment efficacy from the vast library of candidate interventions is not feasible, however, with current systems. There is a vital, unmet need to create cell-based research platforms that more accurately mimic the complex biology of human tumors than monolayer cultures, while providing the ability to screen therapeutic combinations more rapidly than animal models. We have developed a highly reproducible in vitro three-dimensional (3D) tumor model for micrometastatic ovarian cancer (OvCa), which in conjunction with quantitative image analysis routines to batch-process large datasets, serves as a high throughput reporter to screen rationally-designed combination regimens. We use this system to assess mechanism-based combination regimens with photodynamic therapy (PDT), which sensitizes OvCa to chemo and biologic agents, and has shown promise in clinic trials. We show that PDT synergistically enhances carboplatin efficacy in a sequence dependent manner. In printed heterocellular cultures we demonstrate that proximity of fibroblasts enhances 3D tumor growth and investigate co-cultures with endothelial cells. The principles described here could inform the design and evaluation of mechanism-based therapeutic options for a broad spectrum of metastatic solid tumors.

  9. Solid State Structures of Alkali Metal Ion Complexes Formed by Low-Molecular-Weight Ligands of Biological Relevance.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Katsuyuki; Murayama, Kazutaka; Hu, Ning-Hai

    2016-01-01

    This chapter provides structural data, mainly metal binding sites/modes, observed in crystal structures of alkali metal ion complexes containing low-molecular-weight ligands of biological relevance, mostly obtained from the Cambridge Structural Database (the CSD version 5.35 updated to February 2014). These ligands include (i) amino acids and small peptides, (ii) nucleic acid constituents (excluding quadruplexes and other oligonucleotides), (iii) simple carbohydrates, and (iv) naturally occurring antibiotic ionophores. For some representative complexes of these ligands, some details on the environment of the metal coordination and structural characteristics are described. PMID:26860299

  10. [Biological agents in animal breeding: an ancient but still relevant risk].

    PubMed

    Vellere, F; Cucchi, I; Somaruga, C; Brambilla, G; Colosio, C

    2012-01-01

    Agricultural activities expose workers to biological risk, due to the close contact that could occur with pathogens' reservoirs, such as soil, animals, manure and animal products. The paper describes factors that have contributed on the reduction or eradication of zoonoses, such as brucellosis, salmonellosis and bovine tuberculosis (monitoring and prevention of animal infectious diseases, industrialization and mechanization of agricultural activities), and on the other hand the emergence of new risks and new diseases (adaptability of microorganisms, generation of new strains, antibiotic resistance, dissemination of vectors). The role of Occupational Medicine in the prevention of zoonoses is discussed. PMID:23405674

  11. What Is Stochastic Resonance? Definitions, Misconceptions, Debates, and Its Relevance to Biology

    PubMed Central

    McDonnell, Mark D.; Abbott, Derek

    2009-01-01

    Stochastic resonance is said to be observed when increases in levels of unpredictable fluctuations—e.g., random noise—cause an increase in a metric of the quality of signal transmission or detection performance, rather than a decrease. This counterintuitive effect relies on system nonlinearities and on some parameter ranges being “suboptimal”. Stochastic resonance has been observed, quantified, and described in a plethora of physical and biological systems, including neurons. Being a topic of widespread multidisciplinary interest, the definition of stochastic resonance has evolved significantly over the last decade or so, leading to a number of debates, misunderstandings, and controversies. Perhaps the most important debate is whether the brain has evolved to utilize random noise in vivo, as part of the “neural code”. Surprisingly, this debate has been for the most part ignored by neuroscientists, despite much indirect evidence of a positive role for noise in the brain. We explore some of the reasons for this and argue why it would be more surprising if the brain did not exploit randomness provided by noise—via stochastic resonance or otherwise—than if it did. We also challenge neuroscientists and biologists, both computational and experimental, to embrace a very broad definition of stochastic resonance in terms of signal-processing “noise benefits”, and to devise experiments aimed at verifying that random variability can play a functional role in the brain, nervous system, or other areas of biology. PMID:19562010

  12. Advances in clarifying the phylogenetic relationships of acacias: Relevance for biological control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleinjan, C. A.; Hoffmann, J. H.

    2013-04-01

    Biological control of invasive Australian acacias will benefit from recent advances in resolving the phylogenetic relationships of Acacia s.l. and Acacia s.s. ("Australian acacias") within the subfamily Mimosoideae. Some of the phytophage taxa associated with Acacia s.s. display fidelity to a derived clade within the genus. This derived clade contains most of the Acacia s.s. species that have become problematic around the world. Phytophages that are demonstrably restricted to species within the derived clade pose essentially no risk to species outside Acacia s.s.. In contrast, prospective agents able to develop on species in the basal lineages of Acacia s.s. would require more-expansive testing because Acacia s.s. is closely related to the Ingeae, and then sequentially to the genera Acaciella, Mariosousa and Senegalia. Importantly, Vachellia is distantly related to Acacia s.s., being nested in basal Mimoseae lineages, and is thus less likely to be at risk than previously envisaged. Elucidation of these trends shows the benefits of having a comprehensive knowledge of the phylogeny of plants and phytophages under consideration for biological control.

  13. Mammary Carcinogen-Protein Binding Potentials: Novel and Biologically Relevant Structure-Activity Relationship Model Descriptors

    PubMed Central

    Cunningham, A.R.; Qamar, S.; Carrasquer, C.A.; Holt, P.A.; Maguire, J.M.; Cunningham, S.L.; Trent, J.O.

    2010-01-01

    Previously, SAR models for carcinogenesis used descriptors that are essentially chemical descriptors. Herein we report the development of models with the cat-SAR expert system using biological descriptors (i.e., ligand-receptor interactions) rat mammary carcinogens. These new descriptors are derived from the virtual screening for ligand-receptor interactions of carcinogens, non-carcinogens, and mammary carcinogens to a set of 5494 target proteins. Leave-one-out validations of the ligand mammary carcinogen non-carcinogen model had a concordance between experimental and predicted results of 71% and the mammary carcinogen non-mammary carcinogen model was 72% concordant. The development of a hybrid fragment-ligand model improved the concordances to 85 and 83%, respectively. In a separate external validation exercise, hybrid fragment-ligand models had concordances of 81 and 76%. Analyses of example rat mammary carcinogens including the food mutagen and estrogenic compound PhIP, the herbicide atrazine, and the drug indomethacin, the ligand model identified a number of proteins associated with each compound that had previously been referenced in Medline in conjunction with the test chemical and separately with association to breast cancer. This new modelling approach can enhance model predictivity and help bridge the gap between chemical structure and carcinogenic activity by descriptors that are related to biological targets. PMID:20818582

  14. Recent advances in superhydrophobic surfaces and their relevance to biology and medicine.

    PubMed

    Ciasca, G; Papi, M; Businaro, L; Campi, G; Ortolani, M; Palmieri, V; Cedola, A; De Ninno, A; Gerardino, A; Maulucci, G; De Spirito, M

    2016-02-01

    By mimicking naturally occurring superhydrophobic surfaces, scientists can now realize artificial surfaces on which droplets of a few microliters of water are forced to assume an almost spherical shape and an extremely high contact angle. In recent decades, these surfaces have attracted much attention due to their technological applications for anti-wetting and self-cleaning materials. Very recently, researchers have shifted their interest to investigate whether superhydrophobic surfaces can be exploited to study biological systems. This research effort has stimulated the design and realization of new devices that allow us to actively organize, visualize and manipulate matter at both the microscale and nanoscale levels. Such precise control opens up wide applications in biomedicine, as it allows us to directly manipulate objects at the typical length scale of cells and macromolecules. This progress report focuses on recent biological and medical applications of superhydrophobicity. Particular regard is paid to those applications that involve the detection, manipulation and study of extremely small quantities of molecules, and to those that allow high throughput cell and biomaterial screening. PMID:26844980

  15. Rapid generation of biologically relevant hydrogels containing long-range chemical gradients **

    PubMed Central

    He, Jiankang; Du, Yanan; Villa-Uribe, Jose L; Hwang, Changmo; Li, Dichen

    2010-01-01

    Many biological processes are regulated by gradients of bioactive chemicals. Thus, the generation of materials with embedded chemical gradients may be beneficial for understanding biological phenomena and generating tissue-mimetic constructs. Here we describe a simple and versatile method to rapidly generate materials containing centimeter-long gradients of chemical properties in a microfluidic channel. The formation of chemical gradient was initiated by a passive-pump-induced forward flow and further developed during an evaporation-induced backward flow. The gradient was spatially controlled by the backward flow time and the hydrogel material containing the gradient was synthesized via photopolymerization. Gradients of a cell-adhesion ligand, Arg-Gly-Asp-Ser (RGDS), was incorporated in the poly(ethylene glycol)-diacrylate (PEG-DA) hydrogels to test the response of endothelial cells. The cells attached and spread along the hydrogel material in a manner consistent with the RGDS gradient profile. A hydrogel containing PEG-DA concentration gradient and constant RGDS concentration was also generated. The morphology of cells cultured on such hydrogel changed from round in the lower PEG-DA concentration regions to well-spread in the higher PEG-DA concentration regions. This approach is expected to be a valuable tool to investigate the cell-material interactions in a simple and high-throughput manner and to design graded biomimetic materials for tissue engineering applications. PMID:20216924

  16. EFFECT OF NITROGEN AND METAL ADDITIONS ON NITROGEN FIXATION ACTIVITY IN BIOLOGICAL SOIL CRUSTS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexander, K.; Lui, D.; Anbar, A. D.; Garcia-Pichel, F.; Hartnett, H. E.

    2009-12-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are diverse consortia of microorganisms that live in intimate association with soils in arid environments. Also called cryptogamic or microbiotic crusts, these communities can include cyanobacteria, algae, heterotrophic bacteria, fungi, lichens, and mosses. Together, these organisms provide many services to their surrounding ecosystems, including reduction of water runoff, promotion of water infiltration, and prevention of soil erosion. The cyanobacteria and algae also provide fixed carbon (C) to the soil through photosynthesis, and because atmospheric deposition of nitrogen (N) in arid environments is low, the major input of biologically available N comes from cyanobacteria capable of converting nitrogen gas (N2) to ammonium (NH4+). Biological soil crusts are easily destroyed by livestock grazing, motor vehicle travel, and many forms of recreational and agricultural land use. Loss of BSC cover can leave the soil vulnerable to intense erosion that can remove the nutrients necessary to sustain plant and animal life, thus accelerating the process of desertification. In order to preserve existing crusts and encourage the development of new crusts, it is crucial to understand the nutrient requirements of metabolism and growth in these microbial communities. This study investigated the affect of nitrogen and metal additions on N2-fixation activity in cyanobacterially-dominated crusts from the Colorado Plateau near Moab, Utah. Although N2-fixation has been studied in this system before, the affect of nutrient additions on N2-fixation activity has not been documented. The goal of this work was to understand how N and metal supplementation affects crust N metabolism. Three experiments were conducted to observe how N2-fixation activity changed with the addition of N, molybdenum (Mo), and vanadium (V). Molybdenum and vanadium were chosen because they are most commonly found at the active site of the enzyme nitrogenase, the molecule responsible

  17. Catch bonds: physical models, structural bases, biological function and rheological relevance.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Cheng; Lou, Jizhong; McEver, Rodger P

    2005-01-01

    Force can shorten the lifetimes of macromolecular complexes (e.g., receptor-ligand bonds) by accelerating their dissociation. Perhaps paradoxical at first glance, bond lifetimes can also be prolonged by force. This counterintuitive behavior was named catch bonds, which is in contrast to the ordinary slip bonds that describe the intuitive behavior of lifetimes being shortened by force. Fifteen years after their theoretical proposal, catch bonds have finally been observed. In this article we review recently published data that have demonstrated catch bonds in the selectin system and suggested catch bonds in other systems, the theoretical models for their explanations, possible structural bases, their relation to flow-enhanced adhesion, and the potential biorheological relevance. PMID:16369083

  18. New Insights on the Biophysical Interaction of Resveratrol with Biomembrane Models: Relevance for Its Biological Effects.

    PubMed

    Neves, Ana Rute; Nunes, Cláudia; Reis, Salette

    2015-09-01

    Resveratrol has been widely studied because of its pleiotropic effects in cancer therapy, neuroprotection, and cardioprotection. It is believed that the interaction of resveratrol with biological membranes may play a key role in its therapeutic activity. The capacity of resveratrol to partition into lipid bilayers, its possible location within the membrane, and the influence of this compound on the membrane fluidity were investigated using membrane mimetic systems composed of egg l-α-phosphatidylcholine (EPC), cholesterol (CHOL), and sphingomyelin (SM). The results showed that resveratrol has greater affinity for the EPC bilayers than for EPC:CHOL [4:1] and EPC:CHOL:SM [1:1:1] membrane models. The increased difficulty in penetrating tight packed membranes is also demonstrated by fluorescence quenching of probes and by fluorescence anisotropy measurements. Resveratrol may be involved in the regulation of cell membrane fluidity, thereby contributing for cell homeostasis. PMID:26237152

  19. Biomechanical forces in the skeleton and their relevance to bone metastasis: biology and engineering considerations

    PubMed Central

    Lynch, Maureen; Fischbach, Claudia

    2014-01-01

    Bone metastasis represents the leading cause of breast cancer related-deaths. However, the effect of skeleton-associated biomechanical signals on the initiation, progression, and therapy response of breast cancer bone metastasis is largely unknown. This review seeks to highlight possible functional connections between skeletal mechanical signals and breast cancer bone metastasis and their contribution to clinical outcome. It provides an introduction to the physical and biological signals underlying bone functional adaptation and discusses the modulatory roles of mechanical loading and breast cancer metastasis in this process. Following a definition of biophysical design criteria, in vitro and in vivo approaches from the fields of bone biomechanics and tissue engineering will be reviewed that may be suitable to investigate breast cancer bone metastasis as a function of varied mechano-signaling. Finally, an outlook of future opportunities and challenges associated with this newly emerging field will be provided. PMID:25174311

  20. Solid state structures of cadmium complexes with relevance for biological systems.

    PubMed

    Carballo, Rosa; Castiñeiras, Alfonso; Domínguez-Martín, Alicia; García-Santos, Isabel; Niclós-Gutiérrez, Juan

    2013-01-01

    This chapter provides a review of the literature on structural information from crystal structures determined by X-ray diffractometry of cadmium(II) complexes containing ligands of potential biological interest. These ligands fall into three broad classes, (i) those containing N-donors such as purine or pyrimidine bases and derivatives of adenine, guanine or cytosine, (ii) those containing carboxylate groups such as α-amino acids, in particular the twenty essential ones, the water soluble vitamins (B-complex) or the polycarboxylates of EDTA type ligands, and (iii) S-donors such as thiols/thiolates or dithiocarbamates. A crystal and molecular structural analysis has been carried out for some representative complexes of these ligands, specifically addressing the coordination mode of ligands, the coordination environment of cadmium and, in some significant cases, the intermolecular interactions. PMID:23430774

  1. Biological relevance of oxidative debris present in as-prepared graphene oxide

    PubMed Central

    Pattammattel, Ajith; Williams, Christina L.; Pande, Paritosh; Tsui, William G.; Basu, Ashis K.

    2015-01-01

    The influence of oxidative debris (OD) present in as-prepared graphene oxide (GO) suspensions on proteins and its toxicity to human embryonic kidney cells (HEK-293T) are reported here. The OD was removed by repeated washing with aqueous ammonia to produce the corresponding base-washed GO (bwGO). The loading (w/w) of bovine serum albumin (BSA) was increased by 85% after base washing, whereas the loading of hemoglobin (Hb) and lysozyme (Lyz), respectively, was decreased by 160% and 100%. The secondary structures of 13 different proteins bound to bwGO were compared with the corresponding proteins bound to GO using the UV circular dichroism spectroscopy. There was a consistent loss of protein secondary structure with bwGO when compared with proteins bound to GO, but no correlation between either the isoelectric point or hydrophobicity of the protein and the extent of structure loss was observed. All enzymes bound to bwGO and GO indicated significant activities, and a strong correlation between the enzymatic activity and the extent of structure retention was noted, regardless of the presence or absence of OD. At low loadings (<100 μg/mL) both GO and bwGO showed excellent cell viability but substantial cytotoxicity (~40% cell death) was observed at high loadings (>100 μg/mL). In control studies, OD by itself did not alter the growth rate even after a 48-h incubation. Thus, the presence of OD in GO played a very important role in controlling the chemical and biological nature of the protein-GO interface and the presence of OD in GO improved its biological compatibility when compared to bwGO. PMID:26257893

  2. Biological effects of pramipexole on dopaminergic neuron-associated genes: relevance to neuroprotection.

    PubMed

    Pan, Tianhong; Xie, Wenjie; Jankovic, Joseph; Le, Weidong

    2005-03-29

    Pramipexole (PRX) is a non-ergot dopamine (DA) D2/D3 receptor agonist. Experimental studies have provided evidence that PRX may exert neuroprotective effects on the nigro-striatal system. Recent studies have demonstrated a slower decline of DAT density in Parkinson's disease patients treated with PRX as measured by SPECT. The aim of this study is to determine whether PRX has direct biological effects on DAergic neuron-associated genes expression, including DAT, VMAT2, and Nurr1. The human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells were treated with PRX for various time periods and harvested to measure the mRNA and protein products of these genes. Treatment with PRX at 10 microM significantly increased DAT mRNA levels by 54-130% in 4-8 h, VMAT2 mRNA levels by 34% in 4 h, and Nurr1 mRNA levels by 31-39% in 2-4 h, which was the earliest induction among these three genes. The protein levels of DAT, VMAT2, and Nurr1 were markedly increased after PRX treatment, among which the increase of Nurr1 protein level was the highest at first 2 h treatment of PRX. Nafadotride, a D3 DA receptor antagonist, blocked the increase of Nurr1 gene expression induced by PRX, while eticlopride, a D2 DA receptor antagonist, didn't show this effect. Our findings that PRX has biological regulatory effects on DAergic neuron-associated genes may explain both the slower decline of imaged DAT and the neuroprotective effect of PRX. Furthermore, our results suggest that the induction of Nurr1 gene expression by PRX may be mediated by D3 DA receptor. PMID:15740846

  3. Rapid recovery of cyanobacterial pigments in desiccated biological soil crusts following addition of water.

    PubMed

    Abed, Raeid M M; Polerecky, Lubos; Al-Habsi, Amal; Oetjen, Janina; Strous, Marc; de Beer, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    We examined soil surface colour change to green and hydrotaxis following addition of water to biological soil crusts using pigment extraction, hyperspectral imaging, microsensors and 13C labeling experiments coupled to matrix-assisted laser desorption and ionization time of flight-mass spectrometry (MALD-TOF MS). The topsoil colour turned green in less than 5 minutes following water addition. The concentrations of chlorophyll a (Chl a), scytonemin and echinenon rapidly increased in the top <1 mm layer while in the deeper layer, their concentrations remained low. Hyperspectral imaging showed that, in both wet and dehydrated crusts, cyanobacteria formed a layer at a depth of 0.2-0.4 mm and this layer did not move upward after wetting. 13C labeling experiments and MALDI TOF analysis showed that Chl a was already present in the desiccated crusts and de novo synthesis of this molecule started only after 2 days of wetting due to growth of cyanobacteria. Microsensor measurements showed that photosynthetic activity increased concomitantly with the increase of Chl a, and reached a maximum net rate of 92 µmol m-2 h-1 approximately 2 hours after wetting. We conclude that the colour change of soil crusts to green upon water addition was not due to hydrotaxis but rather to the quick recovery and reassembly of pigments. Cyanobacteria in crusts can maintain their photosynthetic apparatus intact even under prolonged periods of desiccation with the ability to resume their photosynthetic activities within minutes after wetting. PMID:25375172

  4. TaBoo SeArch Algorithm with a Modified Inverse Histogram for Reproducing Biologically Relevant Rare Events of Proteins.

    PubMed

    Harada, Ryuhei; Takano, Yu; Shigeta, Yasuteru

    2016-05-10

    The TaBoo SeArch (TBSA) algorithm [ Harada et al. J. Comput. Chem. 2015 , 36 , 763 - 772 and Harada et al. Chem. Phys. Lett. 2015 , 630 , 68 - 75 ] was recently proposed as an enhanced conformational sampling method for reproducing biologically relevant rare events of a given protein. In TBSA, an inverse histogram of the original distribution, mapped onto a set of reaction coordinates, is constructed from trajectories obtained by multiple short-time molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Rarely occurring states of a given protein are statistically selected as new initial states based on the inverse histogram, and resampling is performed by restarting the MD simulations from the new initial states to promote the conformational transition. In this process, the definition of the inverse histogram, which characterizes the rarely occurring states, is crucial for the efficiency of TBSA. In this study, we propose a simple modification of the inverse histogram to further accelerate the convergence of TBSA. As demonstrations of the modified TBSA, we applied it to (a) hydrogen bonding rearrangements of Met-enkephalin, (b) large-amplitude domain motions of Glutamine-Binding Protein, and (c) folding processes of the B domain of Staphylococcus aureus Protein A. All demonstrations numerically proved that the modified TBSA reproduced these biologically relevant rare events with nanosecond-order simulation times, although a set of microsecond-order, canonical MD simulations failed to reproduce the rare events, indicating the high efficiency of the modified TBSA. PMID:27070761

  5. O2 reduction reaction by biologically relevant anionic ligand bound iron porphyrin complexes.

    PubMed

    Samanta, Subhra; Das, Pradip Kumar; Chatterjee, Sudipta; Sengupta, Kushal; Mondal, Biswajit; Dey, Abhishek

    2013-11-18

    Iron porphyrin complex with a covalently attached thiolate ligand and another with a covalently attached phenolate ligand has been synthesized. The thiolate bound complex shows spectroscopic features characteristic of P450, including the hallmark absorption spectrum of the CO adduct. Electrocatalytic O2 reduction by this complex, which bears a terminal alkyne group, is investigated by both physiabsorbing on graphite surfaces (fast electron transfer rates) and covalent attachment to azide terminated self-assembled monolayer (physiologically relevant electron transfer rates) using the terminal alkyne group. Analysis of the steady state electrochemical kinetics reveals that this catalyst can selectively reduce O2 to H2O with a second-order k(cat.) ~10(7) M(-1 )s(-1) at pH 7. The analogous phenolate bound iron porphyrin complex reduces O2 with a second-order rate constant of 10(5) M(-1) s(-1) under the same conditions. The anionic ligand bound iron porphyrin complexes catalyze oxygen reduction reactions faster than any known synthetic heme porphyrin analogues. The kinetic parameters of O2 reduction of the synthetic thiolate bound complex, which is devoid of any second sphere effects present in protein active sites, provide fundamental insight into the role of the protein environment in tuning the reactivity of thiolate bound iron porphyrin containing metalloenzymes. PMID:24171513

  6. Diverse, Biologically Relevant, and Targetable Gene Rearrangements in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer and Other Malignancies.

    PubMed

    Shaver, Timothy M; Lehmann, Brian D; Beeler, J Scott; Li, Chung-I; Li, Zhu; Jin, Hailing; Stricker, Thomas P; Shyr, Yu; Pietenpol, Jennifer A

    2016-08-15

    Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) and other molecularly heterogeneous malignancies present a significant clinical challenge due to a lack of high-frequency "driver" alterations amenable to therapeutic intervention. These cancers often exhibit genomic instability, resulting in chromosomal rearrangements that affect the structure and expression of protein-coding genes. However, identification of these rearrangements remains technically challenging. Using a newly developed approach that quantitatively predicts gene rearrangements in tumor-derived genetic material, we identified and characterized a novel oncogenic fusion involving the MER proto-oncogene tyrosine kinase (MERTK) and discovered a clinical occurrence and cell line model of the targetable FGFR3-TACC3 fusion in TNBC. Expanding our analysis to other malignancies, we identified a diverse array of novel and known hybrid transcripts, including rearrangements between noncoding regions and clinically relevant genes such as ALK, CSF1R, and CD274/PD-L1 The over 1,000 genetic alterations we identified highlight the importance of considering noncoding gene rearrangement partners, and the targetable gene fusions identified in TNBC demonstrate the need to advance gene fusion detection for molecularly heterogeneous cancers. Cancer Res; 76(16); 4850-60. ©2016 AACR. PMID:27231203

  7. Reactions of HNO with metal porphyrins: underscoring the biological relevance of HNO.

    PubMed

    Doctorovich, Fabio; Bikiel, Damian E; Pellegrino, Juan; Suárez, Sebastián A; Martí, Marcelo A

    2014-10-21

    Azanone ((1)HNO, nitroxyl) shows interesting yet poorly understood chemical and biological effects. HNO has some overlapping properties with nitric oxide (NO), sharing its biological reactivity toward heme proteins, thiols, and oxygen. Despite this similarity, HNO and NO show significantly different pharmacological effects. The high reactivity of HNO means that studies must rely on the use of donor molecules such as trioxodinitrate (Angeli's salt). It has been suggested that azanone could be an intermediate in several reactions and that it may be an enzymatically produced signaling molecule. The inherent difficulty in detecting its presence unequivocally prevents evidence from yielding definite answers. On the other hand, metalloporphyrins are widely used as chemical models of heme proteins, providing us with invaluable tools for the study of the coordination chemistry of small molecules, like NO, CO, and O2. Studies with transition metal porphyrins have shown diverse mechanistic, kinetic, structural, and reactive aspects related to the formation of nitrosyl complexes. Porphyrins are also widely used in technical applications, especially when coupled to a surface, where they can be used as electrochemical gas sensors. Given their versatility, they have not escaped their role as key players in chemical studies involving HNO. This Account presents the research performed during the last 10 years in our group concerning azanone reactions with iron, manganese, and cobalt porphyrins. We begin by describing their HNO trapping capabilities, which result in formation of the corresponding nitrosyl complexes. Kinetic and mechanistic studies of these reactions show two alternative operating mechanisms: reaction of the metal center with HNO or with the donor. Moreover, we have also shown that azanone can be stabilized by coordination to iron porphyrins using electron-attracting substituents attached to the porphyrin ring, which balance the negatively charged NO¯. Second, we

  8. Asymmetric Pentafulvene Carbometalation--Access to Enantiopure Titanocene Dichlorides of Biological Relevance.

    PubMed

    Cini, Melchior; Bradshaw, Tracey D; Woodward, Simon; Lewis, William

    2015-11-16

    Unprecedented asymmetric copper-catalyzed addition of ZnEt2 (ZnBu2) to the exocyclic C=C bond of pentafulvenes C5H4(=CHAr) (Ar=2-MeOPh and related species) results in enantiomerically enriched (up to 93:7 e.r.) cyclopentadienyl ligands (C5H4CHEtAr; abbreviated Cp(R)). Copper catalyst promotion with both chiral phosphoramidite ligands and a phosphate additive is vital in realizing both acceptable enantioselectivities and reaction rates. Enantiomeric Cp(R)2TiCl2 complexes have been prepared; the (S,S) isomer is twice as active towards pancreatic, breast, and colon cancer cell lines as its (R,R) enantiomer at 24 h. PMID:26457574

  9. Biological, Clinical, and Population Relevance of 95 Loci for Blood Lipids

    PubMed Central

    Teslovich, Tanya M.; Musunuru, Kiran; Smith, Albert V.; Edmondson, Andrew C.; Stylianou, Ioannis M.; Koseki, Masahiro; Pirruccello, James P.; Ripatti, Samuli; Chasman, Daniel I.; Willer, Cristen J.; Johansen, Christopher T.; Fouchier, Sigrid W.; Isaacs, Aaron; Peloso, Gina M.; Barbalic, Maja; Ricketts, Sally L.; Bis, Joshua C.; Aulchenko, Yurii S.; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Feitosa, Mary F.; Chambers, John; Orho-Melander, Marju; Melander, Olle; Johnson, Toby; Li, Xiaohui; Guo, Xiuqing; Li, Mingyao; Cho, Yoon Shin; Go, Min Jin; Kim, Young Jin; Lee, Jong-Young; Park, Taesung; Kim, Kyunga; Sim, Xueling; Ong, Rick Twee-Hee; Croteau-Chonka, Damien C.; Lange, Leslie A.; Smith, Joshua D.; Song, Kijoung; Zhao, Jing Hua; Yuan, Xin; Luan, Jian'an; Lamina, Claudia; Ziegler, Andreas; Zhang, Weihua; Zee, Robert Y.L.; Wright, Alan F.; Witteman, Jacqueline C.M.; Wilson, James F.; Willemsen, Gonneke; Wichmann, H-Erich; Whitfield, John B.; Waterworth, Dawn M.; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Waeber, Gérard; Vollenweider, Peter; Voight, Benjamin F.; Vitart, Veronique; Uitterlinden, Andre G.; Uda, Manuela; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Thompson, John R.; Tanaka, Toshiko; Surakka, Ida; Stringham, Heather M.; Spector, Tim D.; Soranzo, Nicole; Smit, Johannes H.; Sinisalo, Juha; Silander, Kaisa; Sijbrands, Eric J.G.; Scuteri, Angelo; Scott, James; Schlessinger, David; Sanna, Serena; Salomaa, Veikko; Saharinen, Juha; Sabatti, Chiara; Ruokonen, Aimo; Rudan, Igor; Rose, Lynda M.; Roberts, Robert; Rieder, Mark; Psaty, Bruce M.; Pramstaller, Peter P.; Pichler, Irene; Perola, Markus; Penninx, Brenda W.J.H.; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Pattaro, Cristian; Parker, Alex N.; Pare, Guillaume; Oostra, Ben A.; O'Donnell, Christopher J.; Nieminen, Markku S.; Nickerson, Deborah A.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Meitinger, Thomas; McPherson, Ruth; McCarthy, Mark I.; McArdle, Wendy; Masson, David; Martin, Nicholas G.; Marroni, Fabio; Mangino, Massimo; Magnusson, Patrik K.E.; Lucas, Gavin; Luben, Robert; Loos, Ruth J. F.; Lokki, Maisa; Lettre, Guillaume; Langenberg, Claudia; Launer, Lenore J.; Lakatta, Edward G.; Laaksonen, Reijo; Kyvik, Kirsten O.; Kronenberg, Florian; König, Inke R.; Khaw, Kay-Tee; Kaprio, Jaakko; Kaplan, Lee M.; Johansson, Åsa; Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Janssens, A. Cecile J.W.; Ingelsson, Erik; Igl, Wilmar; Hovingh, G. Kees; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Hofman, Albert; Hicks, Andrew A.; Hengstenberg, Christian; Heid, Iris M.; Hayward, Caroline; Havulinna, Aki S.; Hastie, Nicholas D.; Harris, Tamara B.; Haritunians, Talin; Hall, Alistair S.; Gyllensten, Ulf; Guiducci, Candace; Groop, Leif C.; Gonzalez, Elena; Gieger, Christian; Freimer, Nelson B.; Ferrucci, Luigi; Erdmann, Jeanette; Elliott, Paul; Ejebe, Kenechi G.; Döring, Angela; Dominiczak, Anna F.; Demissie, Serkalem; Deloukas, Panagiotis; de Geus, Eco J.C.; de Faire, Ulf; Crawford, Gabriel; Collins, Francis S.; Chen, Yii-der I.; Caulfield, Mark J.; Campbell, Harry; Burtt, Noel P.; Bonnycastle, Lori L.; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Boekholdt, S. Matthijs; Bergman, Richard N.; Barroso, Inês; Bandinelli, Stefania; Ballantyne, Christie M.; Assimes, Themistocles L.; Quertermous, Thomas; Altshuler, David; Seielstad, Mark; Wong, Tien Y.; Tai, E-Shyong; Feranil, Alan B.; Kuzawa, Christopher W.; Adair, Linda S.; Taylor, Herman A.; Borecki, Ingrid B.; Gabriel, Stacey B.; Wilson, James G.; Stefansson, Kari; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Krauss, Ronald M.; Mohlke, Karen L.; Ordovas, Jose M.; Munroe, Patricia B.; Kooner, Jaspal S.; Tall, Alan R.; Hegele, Robert A.; Kastelein, John J.P.; Schadt, Eric E.; Rotter, Jerome I.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Strachan, David P.; Mooser, Vincent; Holm, Hilma; Reilly, Muredach P.; Samani, Nilesh J; Schunkert, Heribert; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Sandhu, Manjinder S.; Ridker, Paul M; Rader, Daniel J.; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Peltonen, Leena; Abecasis, Gonçalo R.; Boehnke, Michael; Kathiresan, Sekar

    2010-01-01

    Serum concentrations of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and triglycerides (TG) are among the most important risk factors for coronary artery disease (CAD) and are targets for therapeutic intervention. We screened the genome for common variants associated with serum lipids in >100,000 individuals of European ancestry. Here we report 95 significantly associated loci (P < 5 × 10-8), with 59 showing genome-wide significant association with lipid traits for the first time. The newly reported associations include single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) near known lipid regulators (e.g., CYP7A1, NPC1L1, and SCARB1) as well as in scores of loci not previously implicated in lipoprotein metabolism. The 95 loci contribute not only to normal variation in lipid traits but also to extreme lipid phenotypes and impact lipid traits in three non-European populations (East Asians, South Asians, and African Americans). Our results identify several novel loci associated with serum lipids that are also associated with CAD. Finally, we validated three of the novel genes—GALNT2, PPP1R3B, and TTC39B—with experiments in mouse models. Taken together, our findings provide the foundation to develop a broader biological understanding of lipoprotein metabolism and to identify new therapeutic opportunities for the prevention of CAD. PMID:20686565

  10. Altitude training causes haematological fluctuations with relevance for the Athlete Biological Passport.

    PubMed

    Bonne, Thomas Christian; Lundby, Carsten; Lundby, Anne Kristine; Sander, Mikael; Bejder, Jacob; Nordsborg, Nikolai Baastrup

    2015-08-01

    The impact of altitude training on haematological parameters and the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP) was evaluated in international-level elite athletes. One group of swimmers lived high and trained high (LHTH, n = 10) for three to four weeks at 2130 m or higher whereas a control group (n = 10) completed a three-week training camp at sea-level. Haematological parameters were determined weekly three times before and four times after the training camps. ABP thresholds for haemoglobin concentration ([Hb]), reticulocyte percentage (RET%), OFF score and the abnormal blood profile score (ABPS) were calculated using the Bayesian model. After altitude training, six swimmers exceeded the 99% ABP thresholds: two swimmers exceeded the OFF score thresholds at day +7; one swimmer exceeded the OFF score threshold at day +28; one swimmer exceeded the threshold for RET% at day +14; and one swimmer surpassed the ABPS threshold at day +14. In the control group, no values exceeded the individual ABP reference range. In conclusion, LHTH induces haematological changes in Olympic-level elite athletes which can exceed the individually generated references in the ABP. Training at altitude should be considered a confounding factor for ABP interpretation for up to four weeks after altitude exposure but does not consistently cause abnormal values in the ABP. PMID:25545030

  11. Next generation techniques in the high resolution spectroscopy of biologically relevant molecules.

    PubMed

    Neill, Justin L; Douglass, Kevin O; Pate, Brooks H; Pratt, David W

    2011-04-28

    Recent advances in the technology of test and measurement equipment driven by the computer and telecommunications industries have made possible the development of a new broadband, Fourier-transform microwave spectrometer that operates on principles similar to FTNMR. This technique uses a high sample-rate arbitrary waveform generator to construct a phase-locked chirped microwave pulse that gives a linear frequency sweep over a wide frequency range in 1 μs. The chirped pulse efficiently polarizes the molecular sample at all frequencies lying within this band. The subsequent free induction decay of this polarization is measured with a high-speed digitizer and then fast Fourier-transformed to yield a broadband, frequency-resolved rotational spectrum, spanning up to 11.5 GHz and containing lines that are as narrow as 100 kHz. This new technique is called chirped-pulse Fourier transform microwave (CP-FTMW) spectroscopy. The technique offers the potential to determine the structural and dynamical properties of very large molecules solely from fully resolved pure rotational spectra. FTMW double resonance techniques employing a low-resolution UV laser facilitate an easy assignment of overlapping spectra produced by different conformers in the sample. Of particular interest are the energy landscapes of conformationally flexible molecules of biological importance, including studies of their interaction with solvent and/or other weakly bound molecules. An example is provided from the authors' work on p-methoxyphenethylamine, a neurotransmitter, and its complexes with water. PMID:21394332

  12. Photochemical reactions of metal nitrosyl complexes. Mechanisms of NO reactions with biologically relevant metal centers

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Ford, Peter C.

    2001-01-01

    Tmore » he discoveries that nitric oxide (a.k.a. nitrogen monoxide) serves important roles in mammalian bioregulation and immunology have stimulated intense interest in the chemistry and biochemistry of NO and derivatives such as metal nitrosyl complexes. Also of interest are strategies to deliver NO to biological targets on demand. One such strategy would be to employ a precursor which displays relatively low thermal reactivity but is photochemically active to release NO.his proposition led us to investigate laser flash and continuous photolysis kinetics of nitrosyl complexes such as the Roussin's iron-sulfur-nitrosyl cluster anions Fe 2 S 2 ( NO ) 4 2 − and Fe 4 S 3 ( NO ) 7 − and several ruthenium salen and porphyrin nitrosyls.hese include studies using metal-nitrosyl photochemistry as a vehicle for delivering NO to hypoxic cell cultures in order to sensitize γ -radiation damage. Also studied were the rates and mechanisms of NO “on” reactions with model water soluble heme compounds, the ferriheme protein met-myoglobin and various ruthenium complexes using ns laser flash photolysis techniques. An overview of these studies is presented.« less

  13. Food Polyphenols Fail to Cause a Biologically Relevant Reduction of COX-2 Activity

    PubMed Central

    Willenberg, Ina; Meschede, Anna K.; Gueler, Faikah; Jang, Mi-Sun; Shushakova, Nelli; Schebb, Nils Helge

    2015-01-01

    Epidemiologic studies show a correlation between the dietary intake of food polyphenols and beneficial health effects. Several in vitro studies indicate that the anti-inflammatory potential of polyphenols is, at least in part, mediated by a modulation of the enzymes of the arachidonic acid cascade, such as the prostaglandin forming cyclooxygenases (COXs). Evidence that this mode of action can be transferred to the situation in vivo is scarce. This study characterized effects of a subset of polyphenols on COX–2 expression and activity in vitro and compared the potency with known drugs. Next, the in vivo relevance of the observed in vitro effects was tested. Enzyme assays and incubations of polyphenols with the cancer cell line HCA–7 and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) stimulated primary monocytes support the hypothesis that polyphenols can effect COX–2 expression and activity in vitro. The effects were most pronounced in the monocyte assay for wogonin, apigenin, resveratrol and genistein with IC50 values of 1.5 μM, 2.6 μM, 2.8 μM and 7.4 μM. However, these values are 100- to 1000-fold higher in comparison to those of the known pharmaceuticals celecoxib, indomethacin and dexamethasone. In an animal model of LPS induced sepsis, pretreatment with polyphenols (i. p. 100 mg/kg bw) did not result in decreased plasma or tissue prostaglandin levels, whereas the positive control celecoxib effectively attenuated LPS induced prostaglandin formation. These data suggest that despite the moderate potency in vitro, an effect of polyphenols on COX–2 during acute inflammation is unlikely, even if a high dose of polyphenols is ingested. PMID:26440517

  14. Prognostic value and in vitro biological relevance of Neuropilin 1 and Neuropilin 2 in osteosarcoma.

    PubMed

    Boro, Aleksandar; Arlt, Matthias Je; Lengnick, Harald; Robl, Bernhard; Husmann, Maren; Bertz, Josefine; Born, Walter; Fuchs, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Neoadjuvant chemotherapy in osteosarcoma increased the long-term survival of patients with localized disease considerably but metastasizing osteosarcoma remained largely treatment resistant. Neuropilins, transmembrane glycoproteins, are important receptors for VEGF dependent hyper-vascularization in tumor angiogenesis and their aberrant expression promotes tumorigenesis and metastasis in many solid tumors. Our analysis of Neuropilin-1 (NRP1) and Neuropilin-2 (NRP2) immunostaining in a tissue microarray of 66 osteosarcoma patients identified NRP2 as an indicator of poor overall, metastasis-free and progression free survival while NRP1 had no predictive value. Patients with tumors that expressed NRP2 in the absence of NRP1 had a significantly worse prognosis than NRP1(-)/NRP2(-), NRP1(+) or NRP1(+)/NRP2(+) tumors. Moreover, patients with overt metastases and with NRP2-positive primary tumors had a significantly shorter survival rate than patients with metastases but NRP2-negative tumors. Furthermore, the expression of both NRP1 and NRP2 in osteosarcoma cell lines correlated to a variable degree with the metastatic potential of the respective cell line. To address the functional relevance of Neuropilins for VEGF signaling we used shRNA mediated down-regulation and blocking antibodies of NRP1 and NRP2 in the metastatic 143B and HuO9-M132 cell lines. In 143B cells, VEGFA signaling monitored by AKT phosphorylation was more inhibited by blocking of NRP1, whereas in HuO9-M132 cells NRP2 blocking was more effective indicating that NRP1 and NRP2 can substitute each other in the functional interaction with VEGFR1. Altogether, these data point to NRP2 as a powerful prognostic marker in osteosarcoma and together with NRP1 as a novel target for tumor-suppressive therapy. PMID:26045903

  15. Biological processes and optical measurements near the sea surface: Some issues relevant to remote sensing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cullen, John J.; Lewis, Marlon R.

    1995-01-01

    The advent of remote sensing, the develpmemt of new optical instrumentation, and the associated advances in hydrological optics have transformed oceanography; it is now feasible to describe ocean-scale biogeochemical dynamcis from satellite observations, verified and complemented by measurements from optical sensors on profilers, moorings, and drifters. Only near-surface observations are common to both remote sensing and in situ observation, so it is critical to understand processes in the upper euphotic zone. Unfortunately, the biological principles that must be used to interpret optical variability near the sea surface are weaker than we would like, because relatively few experiments and analyses have examined bio-optical relationships under high irradiance characteristic of the upper optical depth. Special consideration of this stratum is justified, because there is good evidence that bio-optical relationships are altered near the surface; (1) the fluorescence yield from chlorophyll declines, leading to bias in the estimation of pigment from fluorometry; (2) the modeled relationship between solar-stimulated fluorecence and photosynthesis seems to deviate significantly from that presented for the lower euphotic zone; and (3) carbon-specific and cellular attenuation cross sections of phytoplankton change substantially during exposures to bright light. Even the measurement of primary productivity is problematic near the sea surface, because vertical mixing is not simulated and artifactual inhibition of photosynthesis can result. These problems can be addressed by focusing more sampling effort, experimental simulation, and analytical consideration on the upper optical depth, and by shortening timescales for the measurement of marine photosynthesis. Special efforts to study near-surface processes are justified, because new bio-optical algorithms will require quantitaitve descriptions of the responses of phytoplankton to bright light.

  16. Developing mononuclear copper-active-oxygen complexes relevant to reactive intermediates of biological oxidation reactions.

    PubMed

    Itoh, Shinobu

    2015-07-21

    Active-oxygen species generated on a copper complex play vital roles in several biological and chemical oxidation reactions. Recent attention has been focused on the reactive intermediates generated at the mononuclear copper active sites of copper monooxygenases such as dopamine β-monooxygenase (DβM), tyramine β-monooxygenase (TβM), peptidylglycine-α-hydroxylating monooxygenase (PHM), and polysaccharide monooxygenases (PMO). In a simple model system, reaction of O2 and a reduced copper(I) complex affords a mononuclear copper(II)-superoxide complex or a copper(III)-peroxide complex, and subsequent H(•) or e(-)/H(+) transfer, which gives a copper(II)-hydroperoxide complex. A more reactive species such as a copper(II)-oxyl radical type species could be generated via O-O bond cleavage of the peroxide complex. However, little had been explored about the chemical properties and reactivity of the mononuclear copper-active-oxygen complexes due to the lack of appropriate model compounds. Thus, a great deal of effort has recently been made to develop efficient ligands that can stabilize such reactive active-oxygen complexes in synthetic modeling studies. In this Account, I describe our recent achievements of the development of a mononuclear copper(II)-(end-on)superoxide complex using a simple tridentate ligand consisting of an eight-membered cyclic diamine with a pyridylethyl donor group. The superoxide complex exhibits a similar structure (four-coordinate tetrahedral geometry) and reactivity (aliphatic hydroxylation) to those of a proposed reactive intermediate of copper monooxygenases. Systematic studies based on the crystal structures of copper(I) and copper(II) complexes of the related tridentate supporting ligands have indicated that the rigid eight-membered cyclic diamine framework is crucial for controlling the geometry and the redox potential, which are prerequisites for the generation of such a unique mononuclear copper(II)-(end-on)superoxide complex

  17. The synthesis of biologically relevant conjugates of Re(CO)3 using pyridine-2-carboxyaldehyde

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Roshinee; Chanawanno, Kullapa; Engle, James T.; Baroody, Bertha

    2012-01-01

    The new pyridine-2-carboxaldehyde adduct, Re(CO)3(NC6H5C(O)H)Cl 1, and previously reported complex Re(CO)3(NC6H5C(O)H)Br 2 react with aniline derivatives sulfanilamide or 4-aminofluorescein in methanol giving Schiff base conjugates Re(CO)3(pyca-R)X (pyca = pyridinecarbaldehyde imine, X = Cl, Br), 3–6. Pre-isolation of compounds 1 and 2 provides a convenient method for preparing conjugate complexes in addition to the known methods of ligand synthesis and one-pot reactions. All new compounds were completely characterized, and compound 1 and the sulfanilamide derivatives 3 and 4 were structurally elucidated by X-ray crystallography. PMID:23976791

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-07-01

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

  1. The scaling law of climate change and its relevance to assessing (palaeo)biological responses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kiessling, Wolfgang; Eichenseer, Kilian

    2014-05-01

    interglacials, are not monotonic, but punctuated by short-term cooling intervals. The fossil record tells us that biodiversity responded dramatically to ancient intervals of climate warming. We can now see that the apparently slower rates of change in some mass extinctions (Permian-Triassic, Triassic-Jurassic) were greater than today when the scaling law is considered. This reassures us that studying deep time patterns of organismic response to climate change is a worthwhile endeavor that is relevant for predicting the future. References Burrows, M. T., Schoeman, D. S., Buckley, L. B., Moore, P., Poloczanska, E. S., Brander, K. M., Brown, C., Bruno, J. F., Duarte, C. M., Halpern, B. S., Holding, J., Kappel, C. V., Kiessling, W., O'Connor, M. I., Pandolfi, J. M., Parmesan, C., Schwing, F. B., Sydeman, W. J., and Richardson, A. J.: The pace of shifting climate in marine and terrestrial ecosystems, Science, 334, 652-655, 2011. Gingerich, P. D.: Quantification and comparison of evolutionary rates, American Journal of Science, 293A, 453-478, 1993. Sadler, P. M.: Sediment accumulation rates and the completeness of stratigraphic sections, Journal of Geology, 89, 569-584, 1981. Sun, Y., Joachimski, M. M., Wignall, P. B., Yan, C., Chen, Y., Jiang, H., Wang, L., and Lai, X.: Lethally hot temperatures during the Early Triassic greenhouse, Science, 338, 366-370, 2012.

  2. Biologically relevant oxidants cause bound proteins to readily oxidatively cross-link at Guanine.

    PubMed

    Solivio, Morwena J; Nemera, Dessalegn B; Sallans, Larry; Merino, Edward J

    2012-02-20

    Oxidative DNA-protein cross-links have received less attention than other types of DNA damage and remain as one of the least understood types of oxidative lesion. A model system using ribonuclease A and a 27-nucleotide DNA was used to determine the propensity of oxidative cross-linking to occur in the presence of oxidants. Cross-link formation was examined using four different oxidation systems that generate singlet oxygen, superoxide, and metal-based Fenton reactions. It is shown that oxidative cross-linking occurs in yields ranging from 14% to a maximal yield of 61% in all oxidative systems when equivalent concentrations of DNA and protein are present. Because singlet oxygen is the most efficient oxidation system in generating DNA-protein cross-links, it was chosen for further analyses. Cross-linking occurred with single-stranded DNA binding protein and not with bovine serum albumin. Addition of salt lowered nonspecific binding affinity and lowered cross-link yield by up to 59%. The yield of cross-linking increased with increased ratios of protein compared with DNA. Cross-linking was highly dependent on the number of guanines in a DNA sequence. Loss of guanine content on the 27-nucleotide DNA led to nearly complete loss in cross-linking, while primer extension studies showed cross-links to predominantly occur at guanine base on a 100-nucleotide DNA. The chemical species generated were examined using two peptides derived from the ribonuclease A sequence, N-acetyl-AAAKF and N-acetyl-AYKTT, which were cross-linked to 2'-deoxyguanosine. The cross-link products were spiroiminodihydantoin, guanidinohydantoin, and tyrosyl-based adducts. Formation of tyrosine-based adducts may be competitive with the more well-studied lysine-based cross-links. We conclude that oxidative cross-links may be present at high levels in cells since the propensity to oxidatively cross-link is high and so much of the genomic DNA is coated with protein. PMID:22216745

  3. Biologically relevant 3D tumor arrays: imaging-based methods for quantification of reproducible growth and analysis of treatment response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Celli, Jonathan P.; Rizvi, Imran; Blanden, Adam R.; Abu-Yousif, Adnan O.; Spring, Bryan Q.; Hasan, Tayyaba

    2011-02-01

    Three-dimensional in vitro tumor models have emerged as powerful research tools in cancer biology, though the vast potential of these systems as high-throughput, biologically relevant reporters of treatment response has yet to be adequately explored. Here, building on previous studies, we demonstrate the utility of using 3D models for ovarian and pancreatic cancers in conjunction with quantitative image processing to reveal aspects of growth behavior and treatment response that would not be evident without either modeling or quantitative analysis component. In this report we specifically focus on recent improvements in the imaging component of this integrative research platform and emphasize analysis to establish reproducible growth properties in 3D tumor arrays, a key consideration in establishing the utility of this platform as a reliable reporter of therapeutic response. Building on previous studies using automated segmentation of low magnification image fields containing large numbers of nodules to study size dependent treatment effects, we introduce an improvement to this method using multiresolution decomposition to remove gradient background from transmitted light images for more reliable feature identification. This approach facilitates the development of a new treatment response metric, disruption fraction (Dfrac), which quantifies dose dependent distribution shifts from nodular fragmentation induced by cytotoxic therapies. Using this approach we show that PDT treatment is associated with significant dose-dependent increases in Dfrac, while this is not observed with carboplatin treatment. The ability to quantify this response to therapy could play a key role in design of combination regimens involving these two modalities.

  4. The practicalities and pitfalls of establishing a policy-relevant and cost-effective soil biological monitoring scheme.

    PubMed

    Faber, Jack H; Creamer, Rachel E; Mulder, Christian; Römbke, Jörg; Rutgers, Michiel; Sousa, J Paulo; Stone, Dorothy; Griffiths, Bryan S

    2013-04-01

    A large number of biological indicators have been proposed over the years for assessing soil quality. Although many of those have been applied in monitoring schemes across Europe, no consensus exists on the extent to which these indicators might perform best and how monitoring schemes can be further optimized in terms of scientific and policy relevance. Over the past decade, developments in environmental monitoring and risk assessment converged toward the use of indicators and endpoints that are related to soil functioning and ecosystem services. In view of the proposed European Union (EU) Soil Framework Directive, there is an urgent need to identify and evaluate indicators for soil biodiversity and ecosystem services. The recently started integrated project, Ecological Function and Biodiversity Indicators in European Soils (EcoFINDERS), aims to address this specific issue within the EU Framework Program FP7. Here, we 1) discuss how to use the concept of ecosystem services in soil monitoring, 2) review former and ongoing monitoring schemes, and 3) present an analysis of metadata on biological indicators in some EU member states. Finally, we discuss our experiences in establishing a logical sieve approach to devise a monitoring scheme for a standardized and harmonized application at European scale. PMID:23325463

  5. Spatial release from masking improves sound pattern discrimination along a biologically relevant pulse-rate continuum in gray treefrogs

    PubMed Central

    Ward, Jessica L.; Buerkle, Nathan P.; Bee, Mark A.

    2013-01-01

    Frogs form large choruses during the mating season in which males produce loud advertisement calls to attract females and repel rival males. High background noise levels in these social aggregations can impair vocal perception. In humans, spatial release from masking contributes to our ability to understand speech in noisy social groups. Here, we tested the hypothesis that spatial separation between target signals and ‘chorus-shaped noise’ improves the ability of female gray treefrogs (Hyla chrysoscelis) to perform a behavioral discrimination task based on perceiving differences in the pulsatile structure of advertisement calls. We used two-stimulus choice tests to measure phonotaxis (approach toward sound) in response to calls differing in pulse rate along a biologically relevant continuum between conspecific (50 pulses s−1) and heterospecific (20 pulses s−1) calls. Signals were presented in quiet, in colocated noise, and in spatially separated noise. In quiet conditions, females exhibited robust preferences for calls with relatively faster pulse rates more typical of conspecific calls. Behavioral discrimination between calls differing in pulse rate was impaired in the presence of colocated noise but similar between quiet and spatially separated noise conditions. Our results indicate that spatial release from energetic masking facilitates a biologically important temporal discrimination task in frogs. We discuss these results in light of previous work on spatial release from masking in frogs and other animals. PMID:24055623

  6. Culturally relevant inquiry-based laboratory module implementations in upper-division genetics and cell biology teaching laboratories.

    PubMed

    Siritunga, Dimuth; Montero-Rojas, María; Carrero, Katherine; Toro, Gladys; Vélez, Ana; Carrero-Martínez, Franklin A

    2011-01-01

    Today, more minority students are entering undergraduate programs than ever before, but they earn only 6% of all science or engineering PhDs awarded in the United States. Many studies suggest that hands-on research activities enhance students' interest in pursuing a research career. In this paper, we present a model for the implementation of laboratory research in the undergraduate teaching laboratory using a culturally relevant approach to engage students. Laboratory modules were implemented in upper-division genetics and cell biology courses using cassava as the central theme. Students were asked to bring cassava samples from their respective towns, which allowed them to compare their field-collected samples against known lineages from agricultural stations at the end of the implementation. Assessment of content and learning perceptions revealed that our novel approach allowed students to learn while engaged in characterizing Puerto Rican cassava. In two semesters, based on the percentage of students who answered correctly in the premodule assessment for content knowledge, there was an overall improvement of 66% and 55% at the end in the genetics course and 24% and 15% in the cell biology course. Our proposed pedagogical model enhances students' professional competitiveness by providing students with valuable research skills as they work on a problem to which they can relate. PMID:21885825

  7. The development of Army relevant peptide-based surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) sensors for biological threat detection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farrell, Mikella E.; Strobbia, Pietro; Sarkes, Deborah A.; Stratis-Cullum, Dimitra N.; Cullum, Brian M.; Pellegrino, Paul M.

    2016-05-01

    The utility of peptide-based molecular sensing for the development of novel biosensors has resulted in a significant increase in their development and usage for sensing targets like chemical, biological, energetic and toxic materials. Using peptides as a molecular recognition element is particularly advantageous because there are several mature peptide synthesis protocols that already exist, peptide structures can be tailored, selected and manipulated to be highly discerning towards desired targets, peptides can be modified to be very stable in a host of environments and stable under many different conditions, and through the development of bifunctionalized peptides can be synthesized to also bind onto desired sensing platforms (various metal materials, glass, etc.). Two examples of the several Army relevant biological targets for peptide-based sensing platforms include Ricin and Abrin. Ricin and Abrin are alarming threats because both can be weaponized and there is no antidote for exposure. Combining the sensitivity of SERS with the selectivity of a bifunctional peptide allows for the emergence of dynamic hazard sensor for Army application.

  8. Culturally Relevant Inquiry-Based Laboratory Module Implementations in Upper-Division Genetics and Cell Biology Teaching Laboratories

    PubMed Central

    Siritunga, Dimuth; Montero-Rojas, María; Carrero, Katherine; Toro, Gladys; Vélez, Ana; Carrero-Martínez, Franklin A.

    2011-01-01

    Today, more minority students are entering undergraduate programs than ever before, but they earn only 6% of all science or engineering PhDs awarded in the United States. Many studies suggest that hands-on research activities enhance students’ interest in pursuing a research career. In this paper, we present a model for the implementation of laboratory research in the undergraduate teaching laboratory using a culturally relevant approach to engage students. Laboratory modules were implemented in upper-division genetics and cell biology courses using cassava as the central theme. Students were asked to bring cassava samples from their respective towns, which allowed them to compare their field-collected samples against known lineages from agricultural stations at the end of the implementation. Assessment of content and learning perceptions revealed that our novel approach allowed students to learn while engaged in characterizing Puerto Rican cassava. In two semesters, based on the percentage of students who answered correctly in the premodule assessment for content knowledge, there was an overall improvement of 66% and 55% at the end in the genetics course and 24% and 15% in the cell biology course. Our proposed pedagogical model enhances students’ professional competitiveness by providing students with valuable research skills as they work on a problem to which they can relate. PMID:21885825

  9. Quantum Dots: An Insight and Perspective of Their Biological Interaction and How This Relates to Their Relevance for Clinical Use

    PubMed Central

    Clift, Martin J. D.; Stone, Vicki

    2012-01-01

    Due to their novel physico-chemical characteristics, semi-conductor nanocrystal quantum dots (QDs) provide an advantageous perspective towards numerous different consumer and medical applications. The most notable potential application of QDs is their use as therapeutic and diagnostic tools in nanomedicine. Despite the many benefits posed by QDs, the proposed, intentional exposure to humans has raised concerns towards their potential impact upon human health. These concerns are predominantly based upon the heterogeneous composition of QDs, which most commonly comprises of a cadmium-based core and zinc sulphide shell. Whilst other nanoparticle (NP) types possess a similar structure to QDs (i.e. core-shell technology (e.g. Fe2O3, Au and superparamagnetic iron oxide NPs)), the importance of the concerns surrounding human exposure to QDs is amplified further since, due to the sophisticated chemical and light-emitting properties of QDs, the use of these NPs within any (nano)medical setting/application could be suggested as realistic, rather than simply an advantageous possibility. It is therefore imperative that a thorough understanding of how QDs interact with various biological systems, predominantly those relative to humans and what the consequences of such interactions are is gained with extreme alacrity. It is the aim of this review to highlight the current knowledge base of QD-biological system interactions, where the knowledge gaps (still) remain and how the understanding of this interaction relates to the most notable of applications for QDs; their clinical relevance. PMID:22896769

  10. Evaluating emotional sensitivity and tolerance factors in the prediction of panic-relevant responding to a biological challenge.

    PubMed

    Kutz, Amanda; Marshall, Erin; Bernstein, Amit; Zvolensky, Michael J

    2010-01-01

    The current study investigated anxiety sensitivity, distress tolerance (Simons & Gaher, 2005), and discomfort intolerance (Schmidt, Richey, Cromer, & Buckner, 2007) in relation to panic-relevant responding (i.e., panic attack symptoms and panic-relevant cognitions) to a 10% carbon dioxide enriched air challenge. Participants were 216 adults (52.6% female; M(age)=22.4, SD=9.0). A series of hierarchical multiple regressions was conducted with covariates of negative affectivity and past year panic attack history in step one of the model, and anxiety sensitivity, discomfort intolerance, and distress tolerance entered simultaneously into step two. Results indicated that anxiety sensitivity, but not distress tolerance or discomfort intolerance, was significantly incrementally predictive of physical panic attack symptoms and cognitive panic attack symptoms. Additionally, anxiety sensitivity was significantly predictive of variance in panic attack status during the challenge. These findings emphasize the important, unique role of anxiety sensitivity in predicting risk for panic psychopathology, even when considered in the context of other theoretically relevant emotion vulnerability variables. PMID:19720496

  11. Chemometric analysis of correlations between electronic absorption characteristics and structural and/or physicochemical parameters for ampholytic substances of biological and pharmaceutical relevance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Judycka-Proma, U.; Bober, L.; Gajewicz, A.; Puzyn, T.; Błażejowski, J.

    2015-03-01

    Forty ampholytic compounds of biological and pharmaceutical relevance were subjected to chemometric analysis based on unsupervised and supervised learning algorithms. This enabled relations to be found between empirical spectral characteristics derived from electronic absorption data and structural and physicochemical parameters predicted by quantum chemistry methods or phenomenological relationships based on additivity rules. It was found that the energies of long wavelength absorption bands are correlated through multiparametric linear relationships with parameters reflecting the bulkiness features of the absorbing molecules as well as their nucleophilicity and electrophilicity. These dependences enable the quantitative analysis of spectral features of the compounds, as well as a comparison of their similarities and certain pharmaceutical and biological features. Three QSPR models to predict the energies of long-wavelength absorption in buffers with pH = 2.5 and pH = 7.0, as well as in methanol, were developed and validated in this study. These models can be further used to predict the long-wavelength absorption energies of untested substances (if they are structurally similar to the training compounds).

  12. Functionally relevant microorganisms to enhanced biological phosphorus removal performance at full-scale wastewater treatment plants in the United States.

    PubMed

    Gu, April Z; Saunders, A; Neethling, J B; Stensel, H D; Blackall, L L

    2008-08-01

    The abundance and relevance ofAccumulibacter phosphatis (presumed to be polyphosphate-accumulating organisms [PAOs]), Competibacter phosphatis (presumed to be glycogen-accumulating organisms [GAOs]), and tetrad-forming organisms (TFOs) to phosphorus removal performance at six full-scale enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) wastewater treatment plants were investigated. Coexistence of various levels of candidate PAOs and GAOs were found at these facilities. Accumulibacter were found to be 5 to 20% of the total bacterial population, and Competibacter were 0 to 20% of the total bacteria population. The TFO abundance varied from nondetectable to dominant. Anaerobic phosphorus (P) release to acetate uptake ratios (P(rel)/HAc(up)) obtained from bench tests were correlated positively with the abundance ratio of Accumulibacter/(Competibacter +TFOs) and negatively with the abundance of (Competibacter +TFOs) for all plants except one, suggesting the relevance of these candidate organisms to EBPR processes. However, effluent phosphorus concentration, amount of phosphorus removed, and process stability in an EBPR system were not directly related to high PAO abundance or mutually exclusive with a high GAO fraction. The plant that had the lowest average effluent phosphorus and highest stability rating had the lowest P(rel)/HAc(up) and the most TFOs. Evaluation of full-scale EBPR performance data indicated that low effluent phosphorus concentration and high process stability are positively correlated with the influent readily biodegradable chemical oxygen demand-to-phosphorus ratio. A system-level carbon-distribution-based conceptual model is proposed for capturing the dynamic competition between PAOs and GAOs and their effect on an EBPR process, and the results from this study seem to support the model hypothesis. PMID:18751532

  13. Functionalization of manganite nanoparticles and their interaction with biologically relevant small ligands: Picosecond time-resolved FRET studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giri, Anupam; Makhal, Abhinandan; Ghosh, Barnali; Raychaudhuri, A. K.; Pal, Samir Kumar

    2010-12-01

    We report molecular functionalization of the promising manganite nanoparticles La0.67Sr0.33MnO3 (LSMO) for their solubilization in aqueous environments. The functionalization of individual NPs with the biocompatible citrate ligand, as confirmed by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, reveals that citrates are covalently attached to the surface of the NPs. UV-VIS spectroscopic studies on the citrate functionalized NPs reveals an optical band in the visible region. Uniform size selectivity (2.6 nm) of the functionalization process is confirmed from high resolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM). In the present study we have used the optical band of the functionalized NPs to monitor their interaction with other biologically important ligands. Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) of a covalently attached probe4-nitrophenylanthranilate (NPA) with the capped NPs confirm the attachment of the NPA ligands to the surface functional group (-OH) of the citrate ligand. The FRET of a DNA base mimic, 2-aminopurine (2AP), with the NPs confirms the surface adsorption of 2AP. Our study may find relevance in the study of the interaction of individual manganite NPs with drug/ligand molecules.We report molecular functionalization of the promising manganite nanoparticles La0.67Sr0.33MnO3 (LSMO) for their solubilization in aqueous environments. The functionalization of individual NPs with the biocompatible citrate ligand, as confirmed by Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy, reveals that citrates are covalently attached to the surface of the NPs. UV-VIS spectroscopic studies on the citrate functionalized NPs reveals an optical band in the visible region. Uniform size selectivity (2.6 nm) of the functionalization process is confirmed from high resolution transmission electron microscope (HRTEM). In the present study we have used the optical band of the functionalized NPs to monitor their interaction with other biologically important ligands. F

  14. Physical-chemical aspects of protein corona: relevance to in vitro and in vivo biological impacts of nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Monopoli, Marco P; Walczyk, Dorota; Campbell, Abigail; Elia, Giuliano; Lynch, Iseult; Bombelli, Francesca Baldelli; Dawson, Kenneth A

    2011-03-01

    It is now clearly emerging that besides size and shape, the other primary defining element of nanoscale objects in biological media is their long-lived protein ("hard") corona. This corona may be expressed as a durable, stabilizing coating of the bare surface of nanoparticle (NP) monomers, or it may be reflected in different subpopulations of particle assemblies, each presenting a durable protein coating. Using the approach and concepts of physical chemistry, we relate studies on the composition of the protein corona at different plasma concentrations with structural data on the complexes both in situ and free from excess plasma. This enables a high degree of confidence in the meaning of the hard protein corona in a biological context. Here, we present the protein adsorption for two compositionally different NPs, namely sulfonated polystyrene and silica NPs. NP-protein complexes are characterized by differential centrifugal sedimentation, dynamic light scattering, and zeta-potential both in situ and once isolated from plasma as a function of the protein/NP surface area ratio. We then introduce a semiquantitative determination of their hard corona composition using one-dimensional sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and electrospray liquid chromatography mass spectrometry, which allows us to follow the total binding isotherms for the particles, identifying simultaneously the nature and amount of the most relevant proteins as a function of the plasma concentration. We find that the hard corona can evolve quite significantly as one passes from protein concentrations appropriate to in vitro cell studies to those present in in vivo studies, which has deep implications for in vitro-in vivo extrapolations and will require some consideration in the future. PMID:21288025

  15. Atypical behavior in the electron capture induced dissociation of biologically relevant transition metal ion complexes of the peptide hormone oxytocin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleinnijenhuis, Anne J.; Mihalca, Romulus; Heeren, Ron M. A.; Heck, Albert J. R.

    2006-07-01

    Doubly protonated ions of the disulfide bond containing nonapeptide hormone oxytocin and oxytocin complexes with different transition metal ions, that have biological relevance under physiological conditions, were subjected to electron capture dissociation (ECD) to probe their structural features in the gas phase. Although, all the ECD spectra were strikingly different, typical ECD behavior was observed for complexes of the nonapeptide hormone oxytocin with Ni2+, Co2+ and Zn2+, i.e., abundant c/z' and a'/y backbone cleavages and ECD characteristic S-S and S-C bond cleavages were observed. We propose that, although in the oxytocin-transition metal ion complexes the metal ions serve as the main initial capture site, the captured electron is transferred to other sites in the complex to form a hydrogen radical, which drives the subsequent typical ECD fragmentations. The complex of oxytocin with Cu2+ displayed noticeably different ECD behavior. The fragment ions were similar to fragment ions typically observed with low-energy collision induced dissociation (CID). We propose that the electrons captured by the oxytocin-Cu2+ complex might be favorably involved in reducing the Cu2+ metal ion to Cu+. Subsequent energy redistribution would explain the observed low-energy CID-type fragmentations. Electron capture resulted also in quite different specific cleavage sites for the complexes of oxytocin with Ni2+, Co2+ and Zn2+. This is an indication for structural differences in these complexes possibly linked to their significantly different biological effects on oxytocin-receptor binding, and suggests that ECD may be used to study subtle structural differences in transition metal ion-peptide complexes.

  16. A short-term colorectal cancer sphere culture as a relevant tool for human cancer biology investigation

    PubMed Central

    Weiswald, L-B; Richon, S; Massonnet, G; Guinebretière, J-M; Vacher, S; Laurendeau, I; Cottu, P; Marangoni, E; Nemati, F; Validire, P; Bellet, D; Bièche, I; Dangles-Marie, V

    2013-01-01

    Background: Ex vivo colospheres have been previously characterised as a colorectal cancer (CRC) well-rounded multicellular model, exclusively formed by carcinoma cells, and derived from fresh CRC tissue after mechanical dissociation. The ability to form colospheres was correlated with tumour aggressiveness. Their three-dimensional conformation prompted us to further investigate their potential interest as a preclinical cancer tool. Methods: Patient-derived CRC xenografts were used to produce numerous colospheres. Mechanism of formation was elucidated by confocal microscopy. Expression analysis of a panel of 64 selected cancer-related genes by real-time qRT–PCR and hierarchical clustering allowed comparison of colospheres with parent xenografts. In vitro and in vivo assays were performed for migration and chemosensitivity studies. Results: Colospheres, formed by tissue remodelling and compaction, remained viable several weeks in floating conditions, escaping anoikis through their strong cell–cell interactions. Colospheres matched the gene expression profile of the parent xenograft tissue. Colosphere-forming cells migrated in collagen I matrix and metastasised when subrenally implanted in nude mice. Besides, the colosphere responses to 5-fluorouracil and irinotecan, two standard drugs in CRC, reproduced those of the in vivo original xenografts. Conclusion: Colospheres closely mimic biological characteristics of in vivo CRC tumours. Consequently, they would be relevant ex vivo CRC models. PMID:23538387

  17. Generation of hydroxyl radical by chromate in biologically relevant systems: role of Cr(V) complexes versus tetraperoxochromate(V).

    PubMed

    Shi, X; Dalal, N S

    1994-09-01

    While Cr(V) species and .OH radicals have been suggested to play significant roles in the mechanism of chromate-related carcinogenesis, controversy still exists regarding the identity of the Cr(V) species and their role in the generation of .OH radicals. Some recent studies have suggested that the primary Cr(V) species involved is the tetraperoxochromate(V) (CrO8(3-)) ion, which produces .OH radical either on decomposition or by reaction with H2O2. The present study utilized ESR and spin trapping techniques to probe this mechanism. The results obtained show that (i) CrO8(3-) is not formed in any significant quantity in the reaction of chromate with biologically relevant reductants such as glutathione, glutathione reductase, NAD(P)H, ascorbate, vitamin B2, etc. (ii) Decomposition of CrO8(3-), or its reaction with H2O2 does not generate any significant amount of .OH radicals. (iii) The major Cr(V) species formed are complexes of Cr(V) with reductant moieties as ligands. (iv) These Cr(V) complexes generate .OH radicals from H2O2 via Fenton-like reaction. The present study thus disagrees with the recently proposed "tetraperoxochromate(V) theory of carcinogenesis from chromate." Instead, it suggests an alternative mechanism, which might be labeled as "the Cr(V)-complexation-Fenton reaction model of carcinogenesis from chromate. PMID:7843104

  18. 78 FR 74218 - Imposition of Additional Sanctions on Syria Under the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-12-10

    ... Imposition of Additional Sanctions on Syria Under the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare.... ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: On August 2, 2013, a determination was made that the Government of Syria used... Notice 8460. That determination resulted in sanctions against the Government of Syria. Section 307(b)...

  19. Biological Production of a Hydrocarbon Fuel Intermediate Polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) from a Process Relevant Lignocellulosic Derived Sugar (Poster)

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, W.; Mittal, A.; Mohagheghi, A.; Johnson, D. K.

    2014-04-01

    PHAs are synthesized by many microorganisms to serve as intracellular carbon storage molecules. In some bacterial strains, PHB can account for up to 80% of cell mass. In addition to its application in the packaging sector, PHB also has great potential as an intermediate in the production of hydrocarbon fuels. PHB can be thermally depolymerized and decarboxylated to propene which can be upgraded to hydrocarbon fuels via commercial oligomerization technologies. Cupriavidus necator is the microorganism that has been most extensively studied and used for PHB production on an industrial scale; However the substrates used for producing PHB are mainly fructose, glucose, sucrose, fatty acids, glycerol, etc., which are expensive. In this study, we demonstrate production of PHB from a process relevant lignocellulosic derived sugar stream, i.e., saccharified slurry from pretreated corn stover. The strain was first investigated in shake flasks for its ability to utilize glucose, xylose and acetate. In addition, the strain was also grown on pretreated lignocellulose hydrolyzate slurry and evaluated in terms of cell growth, sugar utilization, PHB accumulation, etc. The mechanism of inhibition in the toxic hydrolysate generated by the pretreatment and saccharification process of biomass, was also studied.

  20. H-point standard additions method for simultaneous determination of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in pharmaceutical formulations and biological fluids with simultaneous addition of two analytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Givianrad, M. H.; Saber-Tehrani, M.; Aberoomand-Azar, P.; Mohagheghian, M.

    2011-03-01

    The applicability of H-point standard additions method (HPSAM) to the resolving of overlapping spectra corresponding to the sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim is verified by UV-vis spectrophotometry. The results show that the H-point standard additions method with simultaneous addition of both analytes is suitable for the simultaneous determination of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in aqueous media. The results of applying the H-point standard additions method showed that the two drugs could be determined simultaneously with the concentration ratios of sulfamethoxazole to trimethoprim varying from 1:18 to 16:1 in the mixed samples. Also, the limits of detections were 0.58 and 0.37 μmol L -1 for sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim, respectively. In addition the means of the calculated RSD (%) were 1.63 and 2.01 for SMX and TMP, respectively in synthetic mixtures. The proposed method has been successfully applied to the simultaneous determination of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in some synthetic, pharmaceutical formulation and biological fluid samples.

  1. Alkali Metal Ion Complexes with Phosphates, Nucleotides, Amino Acids, and Related Ligands of Biological Relevance. Their Properties in Solution.

    PubMed

    Crea, Francesco; De Stefano, Concetta; Foti, Claudia; Lando, Gabriele; Milea, Demetrio; Sammartano, Silvio

    2016-01-01

    Alkali metal ions play very important roles in all biological systems, some of them are essential for life. Their concentration depends on several physiological factors and is very variable. For example, sodium concentrations in human fluids vary from quite low (e.g., 8.2 mmol dm(-3) in mature maternal milk) to high values (0.14 mol dm(-3) in blood plasma). While many data on the concentration of Na(+) and K(+) in various fluids are available, the information on other alkali metal cations is scarce. Since many vital functions depend on the network of interactions occurring in various biofluids, this chapter reviews their complex formation with phosphates, nucleotides, amino acids, and related ligands of biological relevance. Literature data on this topic are quite rare if compared to other cations. Generally, the stability of alkali metal ion complexes of organic and inorganic ligands is rather low (usually log K < 2) and depends on the charge of the ligand, owing to the ionic nature of the interactions. At the same time, the size of the cation is an important factor that influences the stability: very often, but not always (e.g., for sulfate), it follows the trend Li(+) > Na(+) > K(+) > Rb(+) > Cs(+). For example, for citrate it is: log K ML = 0.88, 0.80, 0.48, 0.38, and 0.13 at 25 °C and infinite dilution. Some considerations are made on the main aspects related to the difficulties in the determination of weak complexes. The importance of the alkali metal ion complexes was also studied in the light of modelling natural fluids and in the use of these cations as probes for different processes. Some empirical relationships are proposed for the dependence of the stability constants of Na(+) complexes on the ligand charge, as well as for correlations among log K values of NaL, KL or LiL species (L = generic ligand). PMID:26860301

  2. The effect of anaesthetics on the properties of a lipid membrane in the biologically relevant phase: a computer simulation study.

    PubMed

    Fábián, Balázs; Darvas, Mária; Picaud, Sylvain; Sega, Marcello; Jedlovszky, Pál

    2015-06-14

    Molecular dynamics simulations of the fully hydrated neat dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine (DPPC) membrane as well as DPPC membranes containing four different general anaesthetic molecules, namely chloroform, halothane, diethyl ether and enflurane, have been simulated at two different pressures, i.e., at 1 bar and 1000 bar, at the temperature of 310 K. At this temperature the model used in this study is known to be in the biologically most relevant liquid crystalline (Lα) phase. To find out which properties of the membrane might possibly be related to the molecular mechanism of anaesthesia, we have been looking for properties that change in the same way in the presence of any general anaesthetic molecule, and change in the opposite way by the increase of pressure. This way, we have ruled out the density distribution of various groups along the membrane normal axis, orientation of the lipid heads and tails, self-association of the anaesthetics, as well as the local order of the lipid tails as possible molecular reasons of anaesthesia. On the other hand, we have found that the molecular surface area, and hence also the molecular volume of the membrane, is increased by the presence of any anaesthetic molecule, and decreased by the pressure, in accordance with the more than half a century old critical volume hypothesis. We have also found that anaesthetic molecules prefer two different positions along the membrane normal axis, namely the middle of the membrane and the outer edge of the hydrocarbon region, close to the polar headgroups. The increase of pressure is found to decrease the former, and increase the latter preference, and hence it might also be related to the pressure reversal of anaesthesia. PMID:25975364

  3. UV and skin cancer: specific p53 gene mutation in normal skin as a biologically relevant exposure measurement.

    PubMed Central

    Nakazawa, H; English, D; Randell, P L; Nakazawa, K; Martel, N; Armstrong, B K; Yamasaki, H

    1994-01-01

    Many human skin tumors contain mutated p53 genes that probably result from UV exposure. To investigate the link between UV exposure and p53 gene mutation, we developed two methods to detect presumptive UV-specific p53 gene mutations in UV-exposed normal skin. The methods are based on mutant allele-specific PCRs and ligase chain reactions and designed to detect CC to TT mutations at codons 245 and 247/248, using 10 micrograms of DNA samples. These specific mutations in the p53 gene have been reported in skin tumors. CC to TT mutations in the p53 gene were detected in cultured human skin cells only after UV irradiation, and the mutation frequency increased with increasing UV dose. Seventeen of 23 samples of normal skin from sun-exposed sites (74%) on Australian skin cancer patients contained CC to TT mutations in one or both of codons 245 and 247/248 of the p53 gene, and only 1 of 20 samples from non-sun-exposed sites (5%) harbored the mutation. None of 15 biopsies of normal skin from non-sun-exposed or intermittently exposed sites on volunteers living in France carried such mutations. Our results suggest that specific p53 gene mutations associated with human skin cancer are induced in normal skin by solar UV radiation. Measurement of these mutations may be useful as a biologically relevant measure of UV exposure in humans and as a possible predictor of risk for skin cancer. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 PMID:8278394

  4. Design, Development, and Psychometric Analysis of a General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry Topic Inventory Based on the Identified Main Chemistry Topics Relevant to Nursing Clinical Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Corina E.

    2013-01-01

    This two-stage study focused on the undergraduate nursing course that covers topics in general, organic, and biological (GOB) chemistry. In the first stage, the central objective was to identify the main concepts of GOB chemistry relevant to the clinical practice of nursing. The collection of data was based on open-ended interviews of both nursing…

  5. Chemical and biological consequences of using carbon dioxide versus acid additions in ocean acidification experiments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yates, Kimberly K.; DuFore, Christopher M.; Robbins, Lisa L.

    2013-01-01

    Use of different approaches for manipulating seawater chemistry during ocean acidification experiments has confounded comparison of results from various experimental studies. Some of these discrepancies have been attributed to whether addition of acid (such as hydrochloric acid, HCl) or carbon dioxide (CO2) gas has been used to adjust carbonate system parameters. Experimental simulations of carbonate system parameter scenarios for the years 1766, 2007, and 2100 were performed using the carbonate speciation program CO2SYS to demonstrate the variation in seawater chemistry that can result from use of these approaches. Results showed that carbonate system parameters were 3 percent and 8 percent lower than target values in closed-system acid additions, and 1 percent and 5 percent higher in closed-system CO2 additions for the 2007 and 2100 simulations, respectively. Open-system simulations showed that carbonate system parameters can deviate by up to 52 percent to 70 percent from target values in both acid addition and CO2 addition experiments. Results from simulations for the year 2100 were applied to empirically derived equations that relate biogenic calcification to carbonate system parameters for calcifying marine organisms including coccolithophores, corals, and foraminifera. Calculated calcification rates for coccolithophores, corals, and foraminifera differed from rates at target conditions by 0.5 percent to 2.5 percent in closed-system CO2 gas additions, from 0.8 percent to 15 percent in the closed-system acid additions, from 4.8 percent to 94 percent in open-system acid additions, and from 7 percent to 142 percent in open-system CO2 additions.

  6. The nonconservative property of dissolved molybdenum in the western Taiwan Strait: Relevance of submarine groundwater discharges and biological utilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Deli; Xia, Weiwei; Lu, Shuimiao; Wang, Guizhi; Liu, Qian; Moore, Willard S.; Arthur Chen, Chen-Tung

    2016-01-01

    This study examined dissolved Mo and sedimentary Mo along with hydrochemical parameters in the western Taiwan Strait (WTS) in May and August 2012. The results demonstrate that dissolved Mo could be depleted of as high as 10-20 nM during our May sampling period when the nutrient-enriched Min-Zhe coastal current ceased and spring blooms developed. The negative correlation between Chl-a and dissolved Mo suggests the possible involvement of high algal productivity in removing dissolved Mo out of the water column. Specific oceanographic settings (little currents) permitted a high sedimentary enrichment of Mo (>6 µg/g Mo) within the highly productive waters outside the Jiulong River mouth. Possibly, the high algal productivities and consequent organic matter sinks provide a pathway of Mo burial from water columns into sediments. Dissolved Mo was relatively high in groundwater samples, but we observed that submarine groundwater discharges (SGDs) only contributed to a relatively small percentage of the total dissolved Mo pool in WTS. It is probably attributable to the immediate removal of SGD-released Mo ions via adsorption onto newly formed Mn oxides once exposed to oxygenated seawater, followed by an elevated sedimentary Mo accumulation near the SGDs (˜5 µg/g). In addition to metal oxide particle scavenging and sulfide precipitation, we estimated that biological uptake along with Mo adsorption onto organic matter carriers could finally provide more than 10% of the annual sedimentary Mo accumulation in WTS.

  7. Identification of Genes Relevant to Pesticides and Biology from Global Transcriptome Data of Monochamus alternatus Hope (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) Larvae

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Ensi; Rebeca, Carballar-Lejarazú; Guo, Yajie; Xiong, Yueting; Mou, Yani; Xu, Runxue; Hu, Xia; Liang, Guanghong; Zou, Shuangquan; Guan, Xiong; Zhang, Feiping

    2016-01-01

    Monochamus alternatus Hope is the main vector in China of the Pine Wilt Disease caused by the pine wood nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. Although chemical control is traditionally used to prevent pine wilt disease, new strategies based in biological control are promising ways for the management of the disease. However, there is no deep sequence analysis of Monochamus alternatus Hope that describes the transcriptome and no information is available about gene function of this insect vector. We used next generation sequencing technology to sequence the whole fourth instar larva transcriptome of Monochamus alternatus Hope and successfully built a Monochamus alternatus Hope transcriptome database. In total, 105,612 unigenes were assigned for Gene Ontology (GO) terms, information for 16,730 classified unigenes was obtained in the Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs) database, and 13,024 unigenes matched with 224 predicted pathways in the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genome (KEGG). In addition, genes related to putative insecticide resistance-related genes, RNAi, the Bt receptor, intestinal digestive enzymes, possible future insect control targets and immune-related molecules are described. This study provides valuable basic information that can be used as a gateway to develop new molecular tools for Monochamus alternatus Hope control strategies. PMID:26815657

  8. Identification of Genes Relevant to Pesticides and Biology from Global Transcriptome Data of Monochamus alternatus Hope (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) Larvae.

    PubMed

    Wu, Songqing; Zhu, Xiaoli; Liu, Zhaoxia; Shao, Ensi; Rebeca, Carballar-Lejarazú; Guo, Yajie; Xiong, Yueting; Mou, Yani; Xu, Runxue; Hu, Xia; Liang, Guanghong; Zou, Shuangquan; Guan, Xiong; Zhang, Feiping

    2016-01-01

    Monochamus alternatus Hope is the main vector in China of the Pine Wilt Disease caused by the pine wood nematode Bursaphelenchus xylophilus. Although chemical control is traditionally used to prevent pine wilt disease, new strategies based in biological control are promising ways for the management of the disease. However, there is no deep sequence analysis of Monochamus alternatus Hope that describes the transcriptome and no information is available about gene function of this insect vector. We used next generation sequencing technology to sequence the whole fourth instar larva transcriptome of Monochamus alternatus Hope and successfully built a Monochamus alternatus Hope transcriptome database. In total, 105,612 unigenes were assigned for Gene Ontology (GO) terms, information for 16,730 classified unigenes was obtained in the Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs) database, and 13,024 unigenes matched with 224 predicted pathways in the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genome (KEGG). In addition, genes related to putative insecticide resistance-related genes, RNAi, the Bt receptor, intestinal digestive enzymes, possible future insect control targets and immune-related molecules are described. This study provides valuable basic information that can be used as a gateway to develop new molecular tools for Monochamus alternatus Hope control strategies. PMID:26815657

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  10. Intra-specific variability and biological relevance of P3N-PIPO protein length in potyviruses

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Pipo was recently described as a new ORF encoded within the genome of the Potyviridae family members (PNAS 105:5897–5902, 2008). It is embedded within the P3 cistron and is translated in the +2 reading frame relative to the potyviral long ORF as the P3N-PIPO fusion protein. In this work, we first collected pipo nucleotide sequences available for different isolates of 48 Potyvirus species. Second, to determine the biological implications of variation in pipo length, we measured infectivity, viral accumulation, cell-to-cell and systemic movements for two Turnip mosaic virus (TuMV) variants with pipo alleles of different length in three different susceptible host species, and tested for differences between the two variants. Results In addition to inter-specific variation, there was high variation in the length of the PIPO protein among isolates within species (ranging from 1 to 89 amino acids). Furthermore, selection analyses on the P3 cistron did not account for the existence of stop codons in the pipo ORF, but showed that positive selection was significant in the overlapping region for Potato virus Y (PVY) and TuMV. In some cases, variability in length was associated with host species, geographic provenance and/or other strain features. We found significant empirical differences among the phenotypes associated with TuMV pipo alleles, though the magnitude and sign of the effects were host-dependent. Conclusions The combination of computational molecular evolution analyses and experiments stemming from these analyses provide clues about the selective pressures acting upon the different-length pipo alleles and show that variation in length may be maintained by host-driven selection. PMID:24225158

  11. Ground-Level Ozone Following Astrophysical Ionizing Radiation Events: An Additional Biological Hazard?

    PubMed

    Thomas, Brian C; Goracke, Byron D

    2016-01-01

    Astrophysical ionizing radiation events such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts, and solar proton events have been recognized as a potential threat to life on Earth, primarily through depletion of stratospheric ozone and subsequent increase in solar UV radiation at Earth's surface and in the upper levels of the ocean. Other work has also considered the potential impact of nitric acid rainout, concluding that no significant threat is likely. Not yet studied to date is the potential impact of ozone produced in the lower atmosphere following an ionizing radiation event. Ozone is a known irritant to organisms on land and in water and therefore may be a significant additional hazard. Using previously completed atmospheric chemistry modeling, we examined the amount of ozone produced in the lower atmosphere for the case of a gamma-ray burst and found that the values are too small to pose a significant additional threat to the biosphere. These results may be extended to other ionizing radiation events, including supernovae and extreme solar proton events. PMID:26745353

  12. Physico-chemical characterization of grease interceptors with and without biological product addition.

    PubMed

    He, Xia; Osborne, Jason; de los Reyes, Francis L

    2012-03-01

    Hardened and insoluble fat, oil, and grease (FOG) deposits are the primary cause of sewer line blockages leading to sanitary sewer overflows (SSOs). However, there have been very few long-term assessments of the physico-chemical characteristics of full-scale grease interceptors (GIs), the first "line of defense" against FOG buildup in sewer lines. In this study, we assessed the physico-chemical characteristics of two full-scale GIs (at a restaurant and a retirement community kitchen) over a one-year period. Statistically significant differences between bioaugmented and untreated cycles were detected for several chemical and physical properties. The treated cycles had lower BOD and COD at the grease interceptor outlet. While the combined data for all treated cycles did not show lower FOG concentrations in the GI outlet compared to the combined data for all untreated cycles, comparison of specific individual treated and untreated cycles show a positive effect due to the addition of product. PMID:22755486

  13. [Effects of biologically active food additives with different contents of vitamins on the vitamin status in humans].

    PubMed

    Vrzhesinskaia, O A; Beketova, N A; Nikitina, V A; Pereverzeva, O G; Kharitonchik, L A; Isaeva, V A; Kodentsova, V M; Durnev, A D; Spirichev, V B

    2000-01-01

    The comparative study of influence of two biologically active food additives with the different contents of vitamins is carried out: a drink "Zolotoi Shar", the dose of vitamins in which makes 50-90% from recommended daily consumption, and "Vitabalance 2000", the contents of vitamins in which at 2-17 of time exceeds need of organism. The use of both additives within 3 weeks resulted in increase of levels of vitamins C, A, E, B2, B6 and carotenoids in blood serum. However if in case of consumption of a drink an authentic level was reached only for vitamin C and beta-carotene, in a case "Vitabalance 2000" for all investigated vitamins except vitamin A. Thus, if the consumption of a drink has lowered frequency of deficiency of 3-4 vitamins, but has not allowed to liquidate it completely, in case of "Vitabalance 2000" consumption the simultaneous deficiency 3-4 vitamins. The received data allow to believe the biologically active food additives containing vitamins in amounts exceeding recommended consumption, are convenient for fast liquidation of hypovitaminoses, and the preparations containing vitamins in doses making 30-50% from need of organism, are acceptable for daily filling of insufficient consumption of vitamins with a usual diet for a long time. PMID:10943001

  14. Hydration Structures and Thermodynamic Properties of Cationized Biologically Relevant Molecules, M+(Indole)(H2O)n (M = Na, K; n = 3-6)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ke, Haochen; Lisy, James

    2015-03-01

    The balance between various noncovalent interactions plays a key role in determining the hydration structures and thermodynamic properties of biologically relevant molecules in biological mediums. Such properties of biologically relevant molecules are closely related to their often unique biological functionalities. The indole moiety is a basic functional group of many important neurotransmitters and hormones and has been used as tractable model for more complex biomolecules. The cationized indole water cluster is a perfect system for the quantitative and systematic study of the competition and cooperation of noncovalent interactions, as electrostatic interactions can be adjusted by introducing different monovalent cations and hydrogen bonding interactions can be adjusted by varying the level of hydration. IRPD spectra with isotopic (H/D) analysis helped unravel the overlapping N-H and O-H stretching modes, a major challenge of earlier studies. Thermodynamic analysis using relative Gibbs free energies, for energy ordering, together with spectral analysis provided unambiguous assignment of spectral features and structural configurations. A systematic hydration model with an in-depth account of noncovalent interactions is presented.

  15. Sonochemical degradation of the pharmaceutical fluoxetine: Effect of parameters, organic and inorganic additives and combination with a biological system.

    PubMed

    Serna-Galvis, Efraím A; Silva-Agredo, Javier; Giraldo-Aguirre, Ana L; Torres-Palma, Ricardo A

    2015-08-15

    Fluoxetine (FLX), one of the most widely used antidepressants in the world, is an emergent pollutant found in natural waters that causes disrupting effects on the endocrine systems of some aquatic species. This work explores the total elimination of FLX by sonochemical treatment coupled to a biological system. The biological process acting alone was shown to be unable to remove the pollutant, even under favourable conditions of pH and temperature. However, sonochemical treatment (600 kHz) was shown to be able to remove the pharmaceutical. Several parameters were evaluated for the ultrasound application: the applied power (20-60 W), dissolved gas (air, Ar and He), pH (3-11) and initial concentration of fluoxetine (2.9-162.0 μmol L(-1)). Additionally, the presence of organic (1-hexanol and 2-propanol) and inorganic (Fe(2+)) compounds in the water matrix and the degradation of FLX in a natural mineral water were evaluated. The sonochemical treatment readily eliminates FLX following a kinetic Langmuir. After 360 min of ultrasonic irradiation, 15% mineralization was achieved. Analysis of the biodegradability provided evidence that the sonochemical process transforms the pollutant into biodegradable substances, which can then be mineralized in a subsequent biological treatment. PMID:25912531

  16. A novel approach for phosphorus recovery and no wasted sludge in enhanced biological phosphorus removal process with external COD addition.

    PubMed

    Xia, Cheng-Wang; Ma, Yun-Jie; Zhang, Fang; Lu, Yong-Ze; Zeng, Raymond J

    2014-01-01

    In enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process, phosphorus (P) in wastewater is removed via wasted sludge without actual recovery. A novel approach to realize phosphorus recovery with special external chemical oxygen demand (COD) addition in EBPR process was proposed. During the new operating approach period, it was found that (1) no phosphorus was detected in the effluent; (2) with an external addition of 10 % of influent COD amount, 79 % phosphorus in the wastewater influent was recovered; (3) without wasted sludge, the MLVSS concentration in the system increased from 2,010 to 3,400 mg/L and kept stable after day 11 during 24-day operating period. This demonstrates that the novel approach is feasible to realize phosphorus recovery with no wasted sludge discharge in EBPR process. Furthermore, this approach decouples P removal and sludge age, which may enhance the application of membrane bioreactor for P removal. PMID:24122666

  17. Modeling pCO{sub 2} in the upper ocean: A review of relevant physical, chemical, and biological processes

    SciTech Connect

    1990-12-01

    The pCO{sub 2} of the surface ocean is controlled by a combination of physical, chemical, and biological processes. Modeling surface ocean pCO{sub 2} is analogous to modeling sea surface temperature (SST), in that sea surface pCO{sub 2} is affected by fluxes across the air-sea interface and by exchange with deeper water. However, pCO{sub 2} is also affected by chemical and biological processes which have no analog in SST. Seawater pCO{sub 2} is buffered by pH equilibrium reactions between the species CO{sub 2}, HCO{sub 3}-, and CO{sub 3}{sup =}. This effect provides an effective reservoir for CO{sub 2} in seawater that is 10 times larger than it would be for an unbuffered gas. The equilibrium between dissolved and atmospheric CO{sub 2} is sensitive to temperature, tending to higher pCO{sub 2} in warmer water. Biological export of carbon as sinking particles maintains a gradient of pCO{sub 2}, with lower values near the surface (this processes is called the {open_quotes}biological pump{close_quotes}). In most of the ocean, biological activity removes all of the available nutrients from the surface water; that is, the rate of carbon export in these locations is limited by the rate of nutrient supply to the euphotic zone. However, in much of the high-latitude oceans, primary production does not deplete the euphotic zone of nutrients, a fact to which the atmospheric pCO{sub 2} is extraordinarily sensitive. Understanding the limits to phytoplankton growth in the high latitudes, and how these limits might change under different climatic regimes, is essential to prediction of future ocean uptake of fossil fuel CO{sub 2}.

  18. Classical conditioning of sexual arousal in women and men: effects of varying awareness and biological relevance of the conditioned stimulus.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Heather; Janssen, Erick; Turner, Stefanie L

    2004-02-01

    Classical conditioning of sexual arousal has previously been demonstrated in human males but not in females. This study explored the role of classical (Pavlovian) conditioning in the activation of genital sexual arousal in both women and men, and assessed the effects of varying conditioned stimulus (CS) duration (subliminal/conscious) and relevance (sexually relevant/irrelevant). Twenty-seven female and 29 male participants received either subliminal or conscious presentations of a photograph of either a sexually relevant (abdomen of the opposite sex) or irrelevant (gun) CS+, which was followed by the unconditioned stimulus (US-erotic film clip). A CS-, a stimulus not paired with the US, was also included in the 11 conditioning trials. Ten participants were assigned to a control group that received unpaired presentations of the CS+, CS-, and the US. Both women and men showed more evidence of conditioning to the abdomen than to the gun when the CS was presented subliminally. When consciously perceived CSs were used, however, gender differences emerged. Men again showed the expected cue-to-consequence specificity but women showed the opposite effect, that is, conditioned arousal to the sexually irrelevant rather than to the relevant CS. The latter finding may be due to increased autonomic nervous system arousal associated with the irrelevant CS (gun). Skin conductance responses indicated more general arousal to the gun than to the male abdomen in women. This is the first study to compare the effects of a subliminal and conscious CS and to find classical conditioning of sexual arousal in women. PMID:14739689

  19. Correlation between structure, retention, property, and activity of biologically relevant 1,7-bis(aminoalkyl)diazachrysene derivatives.

    PubMed

    Šegan, Sandra; Trifković, Jelena; Verbić, Tatjana; Opsenica, Dejan; Zlatović, Mario; Burnett, James; Šolaja, Bogdan; Milojković-Opsenica, Dušanka

    2013-01-01

    The physicochemical properties, retention parameters (R(M)(0)), partition coefficients (logP(OW)), and pK(a) values for a series of thirteen 1,7-bis(aminoalkyl) diazachrysene (1,7-DAAC) derivatives were determined in order to reveal the characteristics responsible for their biological behavior. The investigated compounds inhibit three unrelated pathogens (the Botulinum neurotoxin serotype A light chain (BoNT/A LC), Plasmodium falciparum malaria, and Ebola filovirus) via three different mechanisms of action. To determine the most influential factors governing the retention and activities of the investigated diazachrysenes, R(M)(0), logP(OW), and biological activity values were correlated with 2D and 3D molecular descriptors, using a partial least squares regression. The resulting quantitative structure-retention (property) relationships indicate the importance of descriptors related to the hydrophobicity of the molecules (e.g., predicted partition coefficients and hydrophobic surface area). Quantitative structure-activity relationship models for describing biological activity against the BoNT/A LC and malarial strains also include overall compound polarity, electron density distribution, and proton donor/acceptor potential. Furthermore, models for Ebola filovirus inhibition are presented qualitatively to provide insights into parameters that may contribute to the compounds' antiviral activities. Overall, the models form the basis for selecting structural features that significantly affect the compound's absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion, and toxicity profiles. PMID:22985530

  20. Effect of Co-Existing Biologically Relevant Molecules and Ions on DNA Photocleavage Caused by Pyrene and its Derivatives

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shuguang; Yu, Hongtao

    2005-01-01

    Inorganic ions, coenzymes, amino acids, and saccharides could co-exist with toxic environmental chemicals, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), in the cell. The presence of these co-existing chemicals can modulate the toxicity of the PAHs. One of the genotoxic effects by PAHs is light-induced cleavage, or photocleavage, of DNA. The effect of inorganic ions I−, Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, Fe3+, Mn2+, Cu2+, and Zn2+ and biological molecules riboflavin, histidine, mannitol, nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD), glutathione, and glutamic acid on the DNA photocleavage by pyrene, 1-hydroxypyrene (1-HP), and 1-aminopyrene (1-AP), is studied. The non-transition metal ions Na+, Ca2+, and Mg2+, usually have very little inhibitory effects, while the transition metal ions Fe3+, Cu2+, and Zn2+ enhance, Mn2+ inhibits the DNA photocleavage. The effect by biological molecules is complex, depending on the photochemical reaction mechanisms of the compounds tested (1-AP, 1-HP and pyrene) and on the chemical nature of the added biological molecules. Riboflavin, histidine, and mannitol enhance DNA photocleavage by all three compounds, except that mannitol has no effect on the photocleavage of DNA by pyrene. Glutathione inhibits the DNA photocleavage by 1-AP and 1-HP, but has no effect on that by pyrene. NAD enhances the DNA photocleavage by 1-AP, but has no effect on that by 1-HP and pyrene. Glutamic acid enhances the DNA photocleavage by 1-AP and pyrene, but inhibits that by 1-HP. These results show that the co-existing chemicals may have a profound effect on the toxicity of PAHs, or possibly on the toxicity of many other chemicals. Therefore, if one studies the toxic effects of PAHs or other toxic chemicals, the effect of the co-existing chemicals or ions needs to be considered. PMID:16705811

  1. SysBioCube: A Data Warehouse and Integrative Data Analysis Platform Facilitating Systems Biology Studies of Disorders of Military Relevance.

    PubMed

    Chowbina, Sudhir; Hammamieh, Rasha; Kumar, Raina; Chakraborty, Nabarun; Yang, Ruoting; Mudunuri, Uma; Jett, Marti; Palma, Joseph M; Stephens, Robert

    2013-01-01

    SysBioCube is an integrated data warehouse and analysis platform for experimental data relating to diseases of military relevance developed for the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command Systems Biology Enterprise (SBE). It brings together, under a single database environment, pathophysio-, psychological, molecular and biochemical data from mouse models of post-traumatic stress disorder and (pre-) clinical data from human PTSD patients.. SysBioCube will organize, centralize and normalize this data and provide an access portal for subsequent analysis to the SBE. It provides new or expanded browsing, querying and visualization to provide better understanding of the systems biology of PTSD, all brought about through the integrated environment. We employ Oracle database technology to store the data using an integrated hierarchical database schema design. The web interface provides researchers with systematic information and option to interrogate the profiles of pan-omics component across different data types, experimental designs and other covariates. PMID:24303294

  2. Neocryptolepine: A Promising Indoloisoquinoline Alkaloid with Interesting Biological Activity. Evaluation of the Drug and its Most Relevant Analogs.

    PubMed

    Larghi, Enrique L; Bracca, Andrea B J; Arroyo Aguilar, Abel A; Heredia, Daniel A; Pergomet, Jorgelina L; Simonetti, Sebastian O; Kaufman, Teodoro S

    2015-01-01

    Plants are one of the most important resources for the discovery of new drugs. The potential of natural compounds as new drug leads is clearly illustrated by the discovery and development of many modern medicines. This is an encouraging factor that drives natural products research in the vegetable kingdom. Neocryptolepine is a tetracyclic nitrogen heterocycle isolated from the African climber Cryptolepis sanguinolenta, which is widely used in traditional African medicine in many countries of Central and West Africa. The natural product is one of the representative examples of the small family of indolo[2,3-b]quinoline alkaloids, being endowed of multiple biological activities, including DNA-binding and inhibition of the enzyme topoisomerase II. It is also cytotoxic, antibacterial, antifungal and molluscicidal, also displaying antiprotozoal activity, particularly as antitrypanosomal, antileishmanial, antischistosomal and antiplasmodial. Some of these activities have been related to the product's ability to bind to DNA and to inhibit topoisomerase II; however, the exact mechanisms behind all of the observed bioactivities have not been comprehensively clarified. Major research activities regarding neocryptolepine have been focused into two seemingly opposite fields, related to its cytotoxic and antimalarial properties. Optimization of the natural product as a cytotoxic agent implied improvements in its bioavailability and activity, while the need of non-cytotoxic compounds guided the design and optimization of antimalarial agents. Therefore, the aim of the present article is to systematically review the current knowledge about the diversity of the biological activities related to neocryptolepine, its analogs and derivatives. PMID:25915612

  3. Improving biological relevancy of transcriptional biomarkers experiments by applying the MIQE guidelines to pre-clinical and clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Dooms, M; Chango, A; Barbour, E; Pouillart, P; Abdel Nour, A M

    2013-01-01

    The "Minimum Information for the Publication of qPCR Experiments" (MIQE [3]) guidelines are very much targeted at basic research experiments and have to our knowledge not been applied to qPCR assays carried out in the context of clinical trials. This report details the use of the MIQE qPCR app for iPhone (App Store, Apple) to assess the MIQE compliance of one clinical and five pre-clinical trials. This resulted in the need to include 14 modifications that make the guidelines more relevant for the assessment of this special type of application. We also discuss the need for flexibility, since while some parameters increase experimental quality, they also require more reagents and more time, which is not always feasible in a clinical setting. PMID:22910527

  4. Emotional interference-based forgetting in short-term memory. Cognitive inhibition of pleasant but not unpleasant biologically relevant distractors

    PubMed Central

    García-Pacios, Javier; Del Río, David; Villalobos, Dolores; Ruiz-Vargas, José M.; Maestú, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Emotional stimuli automatically recruit attentional resources. Although this usually brings more adaptive responses, it may suppose a disadvantage when emotional information is task-irrelevant and should be ignored. Previous studies have shown how emotional stimuli with a negative content exert a greater interference than neutral stimuli during a concurrent working memory (WM) task. However, the impact of positively valenced stimuli as interference has not been addressed to date. In three experiments and one re-analysis we explore the impact of pleasant and unpleasant emotional distractors during WM maintenance. The results suggest that our cognitive control can cope with the interference posed by pleasant distractors as well as with the interference posed by neutral stimuli. However, unpleasant distractors are harder to control in the context of WM maintenance. As unpleasant stimuli usually convey relevant information that we should not to ignore, our executive control seems to be less able to reallocate cognitive resources after unpleasant distraction. PMID:25999894

  5. The biological effects of subacute inhalation of diesel exhaust following addition of cerium oxide nanoparticles in atherosclerosis-prone mice☆

    PubMed Central

    Cassee, Flemming R.; Campbell, Arezoo; Boere, A. John F.; McLean, Steven G.; Duffin, Rodger; Krystek, Petra; Gosens, Ilse; Miller, Mark R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Cerium oxide (CeO2) nanoparticles improve the burning efficiency of fuel, however, little is known about health impacts of altered emissions from the vehicles. Methods Atherosclerosis-prone apolipoprotein E knockout (ApoE−/−) mice were exposed by inhalation to diluted exhaust (1.7 mg/m3, 20, 60 or 180 min, 5 day/week, for 4 weeks), from an engine using standard diesel fuel (DE) or the same diesel fuel containing 9 ppm cerium oxide nanoparticles (DCeE). Changes in hematological indices, clinical chemistry, atherosclerotic burden, tissue levels of inflammatory cytokines and pathology of the major organs were assessed. Results Addition of CeO2 to fuel resulted in a reduction of the number (30%) and surface area (10%) of the particles in the exhaust, whereas the gaseous co-pollutants were increased (6–8%). There was, however, a trend towards an increased size and complexity of the atherosclerotic plaques following DE exposure, which was not evident in the DCeE group. There were no clear signs of altered hematological or pathological changes induced by either treatment. However, levels of proinflammatory cytokines were modulated in a brain region and liver following DCeE exposure. Conclusions These results imply that addition of CeO2 nanoparticles to fuel decreases the number of particles in exhaust and may reduce atherosclerotic burden associated with exposure to standard diesel fuel. From the extensive assessment of biological parameters performed, the only concerning effect of cerium addition was a slightly raised level of cytokines in a region of the central nervous system. Overall, the use of cerium as a fuel additive may be a potentially useful way to limit the health effects of vehicle exhaust. However, further testing is required to ensure that such an approach is not associated with a chronic inflammatory response which may eventually cause long-term health effects. PMID:22507957

  6. The biological effects of subacute inhalation of diesel exhaust following addition of cerium oxide nanoparticles in atherosclerosis-prone mice

    SciTech Connect

    Cassee, Flemming R.; Campbell, Arezoo; Boere, A. John F.; McLean, Steven G.; Krystek, Petra; Gosens, Ilse; Miller, Mark R.

    2012-05-15

    Background: Cerium oxide (CeO{sub 2}) nanoparticles improve the burning efficiency of fuel, however, little is known about health impacts of altered emissions from the vehicles. Methods: Atherosclerosis-prone apolipoprotein E knockout (ApoE{sup -/-}) mice were exposed by inhalation to diluted exhaust (1.7 mg/m{sup 3}, 20, 60 or 180 min, 5 day/week, for 4 weeks), from an engine using standard diesel fuel (DE) or the same diesel fuel containing 9 ppm cerium oxide nanoparticles (DCeE). Changes in hematological indices, clinical chemistry, atherosclerotic burden, tissue levels of inflammatory cytokines and pathology of the major organs were assessed. Results: Addition of CeO{sub 2} to fuel resulted in a reduction of the number (30%) and surface area (10%) of the particles in the exhaust, whereas the gaseous co-pollutants were increased (6-8%). There was, however, a trend towards an increased size and complexity of the atherosclerotic plaques following DE exposure, which was not evident in the DCeE group. There were no clear signs of altered hematological or pathological changes induced by either treatment. However, levels of proinflammatory cytokines were modulated in a brain region and liver following DCeE exposure. Conclusions: These results imply that addition of CeO{sub 2} nanoparticles to fuel decreases the number of particles in exhaust and may reduce atherosclerotic burden associated with exposure to standard diesel fuel. From the extensive assessment of biological parameters performed, the only concerning effect of cerium addition was a slightly raised level of cytokines in a region of the central nervous system. Overall, the use of cerium as a fuel additive may be a potentially useful way to limit the health effects of vehicle exhaust. However, further testing is required to ensure that such an approach is not associated with a chronic inflammatory response which may eventually cause long-term health effects.

  7. Predictive variables for the biological behaviour of basal cell carcinoma of the face: relevance of morphometry of the nuclei.

    PubMed

    Appel, T; Bierhoff, E; Appel, K; von Lindern, J-J; Bergé, S; Niederhagen, B

    2003-06-01

    We did a morphometric analysis of 130 histological sections of basal cell carcinoma (BCC) of the face to find out whether morphometric variables in the structure of the nuclei of BCC cells could serve as predictors of the biological behaviour. We considered the following variables: maximum and minimum diameters, perimeter, nuclear area and five form factors that characterise and quantify the shape of a structure (axis ratio, shape factor, nuclear contour index, nuclear roundness and circumference ratio). We did a statistical analysis of primary and recurring tumours and four histology-based groups (multifocal superficial BCCs, nodular BCCs, sclerosing BCCs and miscellaneous forms) using a two-sided t test for independent samples. Multifocal superficial BCCs showed significantly smaller values for the directly measured variables (maximum and minimum diameters, perimeter and nuclear area). Morphometry could not distinguish between primary and recurring tumours. PMID:12804537

  8. Assessing the influence of methanol-containing additive on biological characteristics of diesel exhaust emissions using microtox and mutatox assays.

    PubMed

    Lin, Ta-Chang; Chao, Mu-Rong

    2002-02-01

    Here we investigate the effect of the methanol-containing additive (MCA) on the biological characteristics of diesel exhaust emissions. Microtox and Mutatox assays, respectively, were used to evaluate the acute toxicity and genotoxicity of crude extracts from diesel engine exhaust. The engine was tested on a series of diesel fuels blended with five additive levels (0, 5, 8, 10 and 15% of MCA by volume). Emission tests were performed over the hot start portion of the transient Heavy-Duty-Federal Test Procedure (HD-FTP) and two selected steady-state modes. Microtox results show that MCA additive moderately lowers the toxicity levels of particle-associated (SOF) samples, but generally increase the vapor-phase (XOC) associated toxicity. A strong correlation was found between XOC-associated toxicity and total hydrocarbon (THC) concentrations, while only a slight link was found between SOF-associated toxicity and particulate matter (PM) concentrations. For Mutatox test results, when either 5 or 8% MCA used, XOC and SOF-associated genotoxicity in both steady-state and hot-start transient cycle tests were relatively lower compared to those of the base diesel. The genotoxic potential of XOC samples was significantly increased after treatment with an exogenous metabolic activation system (S9). On the contrary, the genotoxic potential of SOF samples without S9 metabolic activation was generally higher than those with S9. It is noteworthy that the total particle-associated (SOF) PAHs emissions showed trends quite similar to that of the genotoxic potential. As expected, the total particle-associated (SOF) PAHs correlated moderately with direct mutagenicity, and fairly well with indirect mutagenicity. Finally, the genotoxicity data did not parallel the Microtox results in this study, indicating that potentially long-term genotoxic agents may not be revealed by short-term toxicity assays. PMID:11846175

  9. Head and neck cancer subtypes with biological and clinical relevance: Meta-analysis of gene-expression data.

    PubMed

    De Cecco, Loris; Nicolau, Monica; Giannoccaro, Marco; Daidone, Maria Grazia; Bossi, Paolo; Locati, Laura; Licitra, Lisa; Canevari, Silvana

    2015-04-20

    Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is a disease with heterogeneous clinical behavior and response to therapies. Despite the introduction of multimodality treatment, 40-50% of patients with advanced disease recur. Therefore, there is an urgent need to improve the classification beyond the current parameters in clinical use to better stratify patients and the therapeutic approaches. Following a meta-analysis approach we built a large training set to whom we applied a Disease-Specific Genomic Analysis (DSGA) to identify the disease component embedded into the tumor data. Eleven independent microarray datasets were used as validation sets. Six different HNSCC subtypes that summarize the aberrant alterations occurring during tumor progression were identified. Based on their main biological characteristics and de-regulated signaling pathways, the subtypes were designed as immunoreactive, inflammatory, human papilloma virus (HPV)-like, classical, hypoxia associated, and mesenchymal. Our findings highlighted a more aggressive behavior for mesenchymal and hypoxia-associated subtypes. The Genomics Drug Sensitivity Project was used to identify potential associations with drug sensitivity and significant differences were observed among the six subtypes. To conclude, we report a robust molecularly defined subtype classification in HNSCC that can improve patient selection and pave the way to the development of appropriate therapeutic strategies. PMID:25821127

  10. Relevance of Hydrodynamic Effects for the Calculation of Outer Surface Potential of Biological Membrane Using Electrophoretic Data.

    PubMed

    Silva, Izan M; Castro, Maria Clícia S; Silva, Dilson; Cortez, Célia M

    2016-06-01

    In this paper, we present the results of a study on the influence of hydrodynamic effects on the surface potentials of the erythrocyte membrane, comparing two different models formulated to simulate the electrophoretic movement of a biological cell: the classical Helmholtz-Smoluchowski model and a model presented by Hsu et al. (1996). This model considers hydrodynamic effects to describe the distribution of the fluid velocity. The electric potential equation was obtained from the non-linear Poisson-Boltzmann equation, considering the spatial distribution of electrical charges fixed in glycocalyx and cytoplasmic proteins, as well as electrolyte charges and ones fixed on the surfaces of lipidic bilayer. Our results show that the Helmholtz-Smoluchowski model is not able to reflect the real forces responsible to the electrophoretic behavior of cell, because it does not take account the hydrodynamic effects of glycocalyx. This charged network that covers cellular surface constitutes a complex physical system whose electromechanical characteristics cannot be neglected. Then, supporting the hypothesis of other authors, we suggest that, in electrophoretic motion analyses of cells, the classical model represents a limiting case of models that take into account hydrodynamic effects to describe the velocity distribution of fluid. PMID:27276378

  11. Toward Relatively General and Accurate Quantum Chemical Predictions of Solid-State 17O NMR Chemical Shifts in Various Biologically Relevant Oxygen-containing Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Rorick, Amber; Michael, Matthew A.; Yang, Liu; Zhang, Yong

    2015-01-01

    Oxygen is an important element in most biologically significant molecules and experimental solid-state 17O NMR studies have provided numerous useful structural probes to study these systems. However, computational predictions of solid-state 17O NMR chemical shift tensor properties are still challenging in many cases and in particular each of the prior computational work is basically limited to one type of oxygen-containing systems. This work provides the first systematic study of the effects of geometry refinement, method and basis sets for metal and non-metal elements in both geometry optimization and NMR property calculations of some biologically relevant oxygen-containing compounds with a good variety of XO bonding groups, X= H, C, N, P, and metal. The experimental range studied is of 1455 ppm, a major part of the reported 17O NMR chemical shifts in organic and organometallic compounds. A number of computational factors towards relatively general and accurate predictions of 17O NMR chemical shifts were studied to provide helpful and detailed suggestions for future work. For the studied various kinds of oxygen-containing compounds, the best computational approach results in a theory-versus-experiment correlation coefficient R2 of 0.9880 and mean absolute deviation of 13 ppm (1.9% of the experimental range) for isotropic NMR shifts and R2 of 0.9926 for all shift tensor properties. These results shall facilitate future computational studies of 17O NMR chemical shifts in many biologically relevant systems, and the high accuracy may also help refinement and determination of active-site structures of some oxygen-containing substrate bound proteins. PMID:26274812

  12. Detailed characterization of mechanical properties and molecular mobility within dry seed glasses: relevance to the physiology of dry biological systems.

    PubMed

    Ballesteros, Daniel; Walters, Christina

    2011-11-01

    Slow movement of molecules in glassy matrices controls the kinetics of chemical and physical reactions in dry seeds. Variation in physiological activity among seeds suggests that there are differences in mobility among seed glasses. Testing this hypothesis is difficult because few tools are available to measure molecular mobility within dry seeds. Here, motional properties within dry pea cotyledons were assessed using dynamic mechanical analysis. The technique detected several molecular relaxations between -80 and +80°C and gave a more detailed description of water content-temperature effects on molecular motion than previously understood from studies of glass formation in seeds at glass transition (Tg). Diffusive movement is delimited by the α relaxation, which appears to be analogous to Tg. β and γ relaxations were also detected at temperatures lower than α relaxations, clearly demonstrating intramolecular motion within the glassy matrix of the pea cotyledon. Glass transitions, or the mechanical counterpart α relaxation, appear to be less relevant to seed aging during dry storage than previously thought. On the other hand, β relaxation occurs at temperature and moisture conditions typically used for seed storage and has established importance for physical aging of synthetic polymer glasses. Our data show that the nature and extent of molecular motion varies considerably with moisture and temperature, and that the hydrated conditions used for accelerated aging experiments and ultra-dry conditions sometimes recommended for seed storage give greater molecular mobility than more standard seed storage practices. We believe characterization of molecular mobility is critical for evaluating how dry seeds respond to the environment and persist through time. PMID:21831210

  13. Biological Networks for Predicting Chemical Hepatocarcinogenicity Using Gene Expression Data from Treated Mice and Relevance across Human and Rat Species

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Reuben; Thomas, Russell S.; Auerbach, Scott S.; Portier, Christopher J.

    2013-01-01

    Background Several groups have employed genomic data from subchronic chemical toxicity studies in rodents (90 days) to derive gene-centric predictors of chronic toxicity and carcinogenicity. Genes are annotated to belong to biological processes or molecular pathways that are mechanistically well understood and are described in public databases. Objectives To develop a molecular pathway-based prediction model of long term hepatocarcinogenicity using 90-day gene expression data and to evaluate the performance of this model with respect to both intra-species, dose-dependent and cross-species predictions. Methods Genome-wide hepatic mRNA expression was retrospectively measured in B6C3F1 mice following subchronic exposure to twenty-six (26) chemicals (10 were positive, 2 equivocal and 14 negative for liver tumors) previously studied by the US National Toxicology Program. Using these data, a pathway-based predictor model for long-term liver cancer risk was derived using random forests. The prediction model was independently validated on test sets associated with liver cancer risk obtained from mice, rats and humans. Results Using 5-fold cross validation, the developed prediction model had reasonable predictive performance with the area under receiver-operator curve (AUC) equal to 0.66. The developed prediction model was then used to extrapolate the results to data associated with rat and human liver cancer. The extrapolated model worked well for both extrapolated species (AUC value of 0.74 for rats and 0.91 for humans). The prediction models implied a balanced interplay between all pathway responses leading to carcinogenicity predictions. Conclusions Pathway-based prediction models estimated from sub-chronic data hold promise for predicting long-term carcinogenicity and also for its ability to extrapolate results across multiple species. PMID:23737943

  14. A 57Fe Mössbauer characterization of Fe-biopolymer complexes and their relevance to biological molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatia, Subhash C.; Cardelino, Beatriz H.; Ravi, Natarajan

    2005-09-01

    57Fe Mössbauer spectroscopy is used to study the interactions, geometry, and the coordination characteristics of the Fe-complexes of biopolymers such as chitosan, glucosamine, and chondritin sulfate. In addition, a computational effort is undertaken for predicting the geometries and energies of the metal complexes by the Density Functional Theory (DFT) methods as implemented in the Gaussian 2003 quantum mechanical program. Both experimental and computational results suggest that the structure of the metal complexes resemble closely the structure of the active sites of metalloenzymes in 2+ or 3+ oxidation states and is at least tetracoordinated and can possibly have six ligands.

  15. Biology of the cell cycle inhibitor p21(CDKN1A): molecular mechanisms and relevance in chemical toxicology.

    PubMed

    Dutto, Ilaria; Tillhon, Micol; Cazzalini, Ornella; Stivala, Lucia A; Prosperi, Ennio

    2015-02-01

    The cell cycle inhibitor p21(CDKN1A) is a protein playing multiple roles not only in the DNA damage response, but also in many cellular processes during unperturbed cell growth. The main, well-known function of p21 is to arrest cell cycle progression by inhibiting the activity of cyclin-dependent kinases. In addition, p21 is involved in the regulation of transcription, apoptosis, DNA repair, as well as cell motility. However, p21 appears to a have a dual-face behavior because, in addition to its tumor suppressor functions, it may act as an oncogene, depending on the cell type and on the cellular localization. As a biomarker of the cell response to different toxic stimuli, p21 expression and functions have been analyzed in an impressive number of studies investigating the activity of several types of chemicals, in order to determine their possible harmful effects on human cells. Here, we review these studies in order to highlight the different roles p21 may play in the cell response to chemical exposure and to better evaluate the information provided by this biomarker. PMID:25514883

  16. A multicomponent bioactive tissue-engineered blood vessel: Fabrication, mechanical evaluation and biological evaluation with physiological-relevant conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonani, Walter

    The high long-term failure rate of synthetic vascular grafts in the replacement of small vessels is known to be associated with the lack of physiological signals to vascular cells causing adverse hemodynamic, inflammatory or coagulatory events. Current studies focus on developing engineered vascular devices with ability of directing cell activity in vitro and in vivo for tissue regeneration. It is also known that controlled molecule release from scaffolds can dramatically increase the scaffold ability of directing cell activities in vitro and in vivo for tissue regeneration. To address the mechanical and biological problems associated with graft materials, we demonstrated a degradable polyester-fibroin composite tubular scaffolds which shows well-integrated nanofibrous structure, endothelial-conducive surface and anisotropic mechanical property, suitable as engineered vascular constructs. Tissue regeneration needs not only functional biomolecules providing signaling cues to cells and guide tissue remodeling, but also an adequate modality of molecule delivery. In fact, healthy tissue formation requires specific signals at well-defined place and time. To develop scaffolds with multi-modal presentation of biomolecules, we patterned electrospun nanofibers over the thickness of the 3-dimensional scaffolds by programming the deposition of interpenetrating networks of degradable polymers poly(a-caprolactone) and poly(lactide-co-glycolide) acid in tailored proportion. Fluorescent model molecules, drug and growth factors were embedded in the polymeric fibers with different techniques and release profiles were obtained and discussed. Fabrication process resulted in precise gradient patterns of materials and functional biomolecules throughout the thickness of the scaffold. These graded materials showed programmable spatio-temporal control over the release. Molecule release profiles on each side of the scaffolds were used to determine the separation efficiency of molecule

  17. Global change and biological soil crusts: Effects of ultraviolet augmentation under altered precipitation regimes and nitrogen additions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.; Phillips, S.L.; Flint, S.; Money, J.; Caldwell, M.

    2008-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs), a consortium of cyanobacteria, lichens, and mosses, are essential in most dryland ecosystems. As these organisms are relatively immobile and occur on the soil surface, they are exposed to high levels of ultraviolet (UV) radiation and atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition, rising temperatures, and alterations in precipitation patterns. In this study, we applied treatments to three types of BSCs (early, medium, and late successional) over three time periods (spring, summer, and spring-fall). In the first year, we augmented UV and altered precipitation patterns, and in the second year, we augmented UV and N. In the first year, with average air temperatures, we saw little response to our treatments except quantum yield, which was reduced in dark BSCs during one of three sample times and in Collema BSCs two of three sample times. There was more response to UV augmentation the second year when air temperatures were above average. Declines were seen in 21% of the measured variables, including quantum yield, chlorophyll a, UV-protective pigments, nitrogenase activity, and extracellular polysaccharides. N additions had some negative effects on light and dark BSCs, including the reduction of quantum yield, ??-carotene, nitrogenase activity, scytonemin, and xanthophylls. N addition had no effects on the Collema BSCs. When N was added to samples that had received augmented UV, there were only limited effects relative to samples that received UV without N. These results indicate that the negative effect of UV and altered precipitation on BSCs will be heightened as global temperatures increase, and that as their ability to produce UV-protective pigments is compromised, physiological functioning will be impaired. N deposition will only ameliorate UV impacts in a limited number of cases. Overall, increases in UV will likely lead to lowered productivity and increased mortality in BSCs through time, which, in turn, will reduce their ability to contribute

  18. Synthesis of fluorophore encapsulated silica nanoparticles for the evaluation of the biological fate and toxicity of food relevant nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zane, Andrew Paul

    fluorophores, rhodamine 6G and rhodamine 800, into silica shells for direct monitoring in intestinal epithelial cells and tissues of exposed mice. We show that, for small nanoparticles, a typical Stober-type ammonia driven synthesis does not yield stable fluorescence. This has been observed in literature and is attributed to incompletely hydrolyzed silica precursor causing partial dissolution of the silica shell. We remedy this by applying an arginine driven silica shell synthesis, which is known to produce a denser and more stable product at smaller particle sizes. We show that all three fluorophores can be coated in a simple generalized procedure, and the resulting particles all show stable fluorescence with no evidence of dye leakage. Using these particles, we demonstrate that silica nanoparticles can be observed internalizing into C2BBe1 intestinal epithelial cells, and in the tissues of mice that were fed the particles by gavage. We find direct evidence that the particles are absorbed into circulation and subsequently localize in organs throughout the body. Future efforts will attempt to better quantify this accumulation, as well as generalize the procedure to other food relevant nanoparticles such as TiO2.

  19. Modeling the Effect of External Carbon Source Addition under Different Electron Acceptor Conditions in Biological Nutrient Removal Activated Sludge Systems.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiang; Wisniewski, Kamil; Czerwionka, Krzysztof; Zhou, Qi; Xie, Li; Makinia, Jacek

    2016-02-16

    The aim of this study was to expand the International Water Association Activated Sludge Model No. 2d (ASM2d) to predict the aerobic/anoxic behavior of polyphosphate accumulating organisms (PAOs) and "ordinary" heterotrophs in the presence of different external carbon sources and electron acceptors. The following new aspects were considered: (1) a new type of the readily biodegradable substrate, not available for the anaerobic activity of PAOs, (2) nitrite as an electron acceptor, and (3) acclimation of "ordinary" heterotrophs to the new external substrate via enzyme synthesis. The expanded model incorporated 30 new or modified process rate equations. The model was evaluated against data from several, especially designed laboratory experiments which focused on the combined effects of different types of external carbon sources (acetate, ethanol and fusel oil) and electron acceptors (dissolved oxygen, nitrate and nitrite) on the behavior of PAOs and "ordinary" heterotrophs. With the proposed expansions, it was possible to improve some deficiencies of the ASM2d in predicting the behavior of biological nutrient removal (BNR) systems with the addition of external carbon sources, including the effect of acclimation to the new carbon source. PMID:26783836

  20. Facile preparation and biological imaging of luminescent polymeric nanoprobes with aggregation-induced emission characteristics through Michael addition reaction.

    PubMed

    Lv, Qiulan; Wang, Ke; Xu, Dazhuang; Liu, Meiying; Wan, Qing; Huang, Hongye; Liang, Shangdong; Zhang, Xiaoyong; Wei, Yen

    2016-09-01

    Water dispersion aggregation-induced emission (AIE) dyes based nanomaterials have recently attracted increasing attention in the biomedical fields because of their unique optical properties, outstanding performance as imaging and therapeutic agents. The methods to conjugate hydrophilic polymers with AIE dyes to solve the hydrophobic nature of AIE dyes and makeS them widely used in biomedicine, which have been extensively explored and paid great effort previously. Although great advance has been made in the fabrication and biomedical applications of AIE-active polymeric nanoprobes, facile and efficient strategies for fabrication of biodegradable AIE-active nanoprobes are still high desirable. In this work, amphiphilic biodegradable fluorescent organic nanoparticles (PLL-TPE-O-E FONs) have been fabricated for the first time by conjugation of AIE dye tetraphenylethene acrylate (TPE-O-E) with Poly-l-Lysine (PLL) through a facile one-step Michael addition reaction, which was carried out under rather mild conditions, included air atmosphere, near room temperature and absent of metal catalysts or hazardous reagents. Due to the unique AIE properties, these amphiphilic copolymers tend to self-assemble into high luminescent water dispersible nanoparticles with size range from 400 to 600nm. Laser scanning microscope and cytotoxicity results revealed that PLL-TPE-O-E FONs can be internalized into cytoplasm with negative cytotoxicity, which implied that PLL-TPE-O-E FONs are promising for biological applications. PMID:27311129

  1. Insight into the Local Solvent Environment of Biologically Relevant Iron-nitroysl Systems through Two-Dimensional Infrared Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brookes, Jennifer Faith

    Iron-nitrosyl systems, particularly in the form of heme proteins, with their iron metal active sites play an important role in biological systems. Heme proteins act as storage, transporters, and receptors for nitric oxide (NO), a signaling molecule that is important in immune, nervous, and cardiovascular systems of mammals. By better understanding the local environment of the active site of NO binding heme proteins we can gain insight into disease in which the NO pathways have been implicated. This is an important step to being able to develop pharmaceuticals targeting NO pathways in humans. Sodium nitroprusside ((SNP, Na2[Fe(CN)5is NO]·2H 2O) investigated as a model system for the active site of nitric oxide binding heme proteins. Using two-dimensional infrared spectroscopy (2D IR) to obtain dephasing dynamics of the nitrosyl stretch (nuNO) in a series of solvents we are able to better understand the local environment of the more complicated metalloproteins. Rigorous line shape analysis is performed by using nonlinear response theory to simulate 2D IR spectra which are then fit to experimental data in an iterative process to extract frequency-frequency correlation functions (FFCFs). The time scales obtained are then correlated to empirical solvent polarity parameters. The analysis of the 2D IR lineshapes reveal that the spectral diffusion timescale of the nuNO in SNP varies from 0.8 -- 4 ps and is negatively correlated with the empirical solvent polarity scales. We continue to investigate NO binding of metalloproteins through 2D IR experiments on nitrophorin 4 (NP4). NP4 is a pH-sensitive NO transporter protein present in the salivary gland of the blood sucking insect Rhodius prolixus which undergoes a pH sensitive structural change between a closed and open conformation allowing for the storage and delivery of NO. The two structures are observed spectroscopically as two distinct pH-dependent nu NO frequencies at ~1904 and ~1917 cm-1. We obtain FFCFs by globally

  2. Synergistic and Additive Effect of Oregano Essential Oil and Biological Silver Nanoparticles against Multidrug-Resistant Bacterial Strains.

    PubMed

    Scandorieiro, Sara; de Camargo, Larissa C; Lancheros, Cesar A C; Yamada-Ogatta, Sueli F; Nakamura, Celso V; de Oliveira, Admilton G; Andrade, Célia G T J; Duran, Nelson; Nakazato, Gerson; Kobayashi, Renata K T

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics has become a clinical and public health problem, making therapeutic decisions more challenging. Plant compounds and nanodrugs have been proposed as potential antimicrobial alternatives. Studies have shown that oregano (Origanum vulgare) essential oil (OEO) and silver nanoparticles have potent antibacterial activity, also against multidrug-resistant strains; however, the strong organoleptic characteristics of OEO and the development of resistance to these metal nanoparticles can limit their use. This study evaluated the antibacterial effect of a two-drug combination of biologically synthesized silver nanoparticles (bio-AgNP), produced by Fusarium oxysporum, and OEO against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, including multidrug-resistant strains. OEO and bio-AgNP showed bactericidal effects against all 17 strains tested, with minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC) ranging from 0.298 to 1.193 mg/mL and 62.5 to 250 μM, respectively. Time-kill curves indicated that OEO acted rapidly (within 10 min), while the metallic nanoparticles took 4 h to kill Gram-negative bacteria and 24 h to kill Gram-positive bacteria. The combination of the two compounds resulted in a synergistic or additive effect, reducing their MIC values and reducing the time of action compared to bio-AgNP used alone, i.e., 20 min for Gram-negative bacteria and 7 h for Gram-positive bacteria. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) revealed similar morphological alterations in Staphylococcus aureus (non-methicillin-resistant S. aureus, non-MRSA) cells exposed to three different treatments (OEO, bio-AgNP and combination of the two), which appeared cell surface blebbing. Individual and combined treatments showed reduction in cell density and decrease in exopolysaccharide matrix compared to untreated bacterial cells. It indicated that this composition have an antimicrobial activity against S. aureus by disrupting cells. Both compounds showed very low

  3. Synergistic and Additive Effect of Oregano Essential Oil and Biological Silver Nanoparticles against Multidrug-Resistant Bacterial Strains

    PubMed Central

    Scandorieiro, Sara; de Camargo, Larissa C.; Lancheros, Cesar A. C.; Yamada-Ogatta, Sueli F.; Nakamura, Celso V.; de Oliveira, Admilton G.; Andrade, Célia G. T. J.; Duran, Nelson; Nakazato, Gerson; Kobayashi, Renata K. T.

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial resistance to conventional antibiotics has become a clinical and public health problem, making therapeutic decisions more challenging. Plant compounds and nanodrugs have been proposed as potential antimicrobial alternatives. Studies have shown that oregano (Origanum vulgare) essential oil (OEO) and silver nanoparticles have potent antibacterial activity, also against multidrug-resistant strains; however, the strong organoleptic characteristics of OEO and the development of resistance to these metal nanoparticles can limit their use. This study evaluated the antibacterial effect of a two-drug combination of biologically synthesized silver nanoparticles (bio-AgNP), produced by Fusarium oxysporum, and OEO against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, including multidrug-resistant strains. OEO and bio-AgNP showed bactericidal effects against all 17 strains tested, with minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC) ranging from 0.298 to 1.193 mg/mL and 62.5 to 250 μM, respectively. Time-kill curves indicated that OEO acted rapidly (within 10 min), while the metallic nanoparticles took 4 h to kill Gram-negative bacteria and 24 h to kill Gram-positive bacteria. The combination of the two compounds resulted in a synergistic or additive effect, reducing their MIC values and reducing the time of action compared to bio-AgNP used alone, i.e., 20 min for Gram-negative bacteria and 7 h for Gram-positive bacteria. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) revealed similar morphological alterations in Staphylococcus aureus (non-methicillin-resistant S. aureus, non-MRSA) cells exposed to three different treatments (OEO, bio-AgNP and combination of the two), which appeared cell surface blebbing. Individual and combined treatments showed reduction in cell density and decrease in exopolysaccharide matrix compared to untreated bacterial cells. It indicated that this composition have an antimicrobial activity against S. aureus by disrupting cells. Both compounds showed very low

  4. Making Biology Relevant to Undergraduates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Musante, Susan

    2012-01-01

    This article features Science Education for New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities (SENCER; www.sencer.net) Summer Institute. The SENCER program, which began formally in 2001, was the vision of David Burns; Karen Oates, currently Peterson Family Dean of Arts and Sciences at Worcester Polytechnic Institute; and Ric Wiebl, currently director of…

  5. Time-Resolved XAFS Spectroscopic Studies of B-H and N-H Oxidative Addition to Transition Metal Catalysts Relevant to Hydrogen Storage

    SciTech Connect

    Bitterwolf, Thomas E.

    2014-12-09

    Successful catalytic dehydrogenation of aminoborane, H3NBH3, prompted questions as to the potential role of N-H oxidative addition in the mechanisms of these processes. N-H oxidative addition reactions are rare, and in all cases appear to involve initial dative bonding to the metal by the amine lone pairs followed by transfer of a proton to the basic metal. Aminoborane and its trimethylborane derivative block this mechanism and, in principle, should permit authentic N-H oxidative attrition to occur. Extensive experimental work failed to confirm this hypothesis. In all cases either B-H complexation or oxidative addition of solvent C-H bonds dominate the chemistry.

  6. Long term effects of annual additions of animal manure on soil chemical, physical, and biological properties in the Great Plains

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this study was to determine the effects of long-term annual beef manure amendments and wheat and rye cover crops on selected chemical, physical and biological properties of a typical Midwest U.S. soil under corn silage production. The treatments included: manure application/cover cr...

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-03-15

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

  8. geneCommittee: a web-based tool for extensively testing the discriminatory power of biologically relevant gene sets in microarray data classification

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The diagnosis and prognosis of several diseases can be shortened through the use of different large-scale genome experiments. In this context, microarrays can generate expression data for a huge set of genes. However, to obtain solid statistical evidence from the resulting data, it is necessary to train and to validate many classification techniques in order to find the best discriminative method. This is a time-consuming process that normally depends on intricate statistical tools. Results geneCommittee is a web-based interactive tool for routinely evaluating the discriminative classification power of custom hypothesis in the form of biologically relevant gene sets. While the user can work with different gene set collections and several microarray data files to configure specific classification experiments, the tool is able to run several tests in parallel. Provided with a straightforward and intuitive interface, geneCommittee is able to render valuable information for diagnostic analyses and clinical management decisions based on systematically evaluating custom hypothesis over different data sets using complementary classifiers, a key aspect in clinical research. Conclusions geneCommittee allows the enrichment of microarrays raw data with gene functional annotations, producing integrated datasets that simplify the construction of better discriminative hypothesis, and allows the creation of a set of complementary classifiers. The trained committees can then be used for clinical research and diagnosis. Full documentation including common use cases and guided analysis workflows is freely available at http://sing.ei.uvigo.es/GC/. PMID:24475928

  9. REACTIVITIES OF ACRYLIC AND METHACRYLIC ACIDS IN A NUCLEOPHILIC ADDITION MODEL OF THEIR BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY (JOURNAL VERSION)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The reactivities of derivatives of acrylic and methacrylic acid (AA and MAA) in Michael reactions of nucleophilic addition that have been proposed as the underlying mechanisms for the toxicity of such compounds are evaluated from a study of the mechanism of addition of a nucleoph...

  10. Restricted access chiral stationary phase synthesized via reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer polymerization for direct analysis of biological samples by high performance liquid chromatography.

    PubMed

    Song, Wen-Jun; Wei, Ji-Ping; Wang, Su-Ying; Wang, Huai-Song

    2014-06-17

    Novel hydrophilic microparticles containing β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) were prepared via one-pot synthesis using reversible addition-fragmentation chain-transfer (RAFT) precipitation polymerization, a "controlled/living" radical polymerization technique. The polymerization was initiated by hydrophilic macromolecular chain-transfer agent [poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate), PHEMA]. The hydrophilic PHEMA on the surface of microparticles can well improve their surface hydrophilicity and lead to their biological compatibility. As chiral restricted access material (RAM), the hydrophilic microparticles can be used for determination of enantiomers in biological samples with direct injection via HPLC analysis. PMID:24890695

  11. OH-Radical Specific Addition to Glutathione S-Atom at the Air-Water Interface: Relevance to the Redox Balance of the Lung Epithelial Lining Fluid.

    PubMed

    Enami, Shinichi; Hoffmann, Michael R; Colussi, Agustín J

    2015-10-01

    Antioxidants in epithelial lining fluids (ELF) prevent inhaled air pollutants from reaching lung tissue. This process, however, may upset ELF's redox balance, which is deemed to be expressed by the ratio of the major antioxidant glutathione (GSH) to its putative oxidation product GSSG. Previously, we found that at physiological pH O3(g) rapidly oxidizes GS(2-)(aq) (but not GSH(-)) to GSO3(-) rather than GSSG. Here, we report that in moderately acidic pH ≤ 5 media ·OH(g) oxidizes GSH(-)(aq) to sulfenic GSOH(-), sulfinic GSO2(-), and sulfonic GSO3(-) acids via ·OH specific additions to reduced S-atoms. The remarkable specificity of ·OH on water versus its lack of selectivity in bulk water implicates an unprecedented steering process during [OH···GSH] interfacial encounters. Thus, both O3 and ·OH oxidize GSH to GSOH(-) under most conditions, and since GSOH(-) is reduced back to GSH in vivo by NADPH, redox balance may be in fact signaled by GSH/GSOH ratios. PMID:26722895

  12. Concentrative nucleoside transporter 1 (hCNT1) promotes phenotypic changes relevant to tumor biology in a translocation-independent manner

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Torras, S; Vidal-Pla, A; Cano-Soldado, P; Huber-Ruano, I; Mazo, A; Pastor-Anglada, M

    2013-01-01

    Nucleoside transporters (NTs) mediate the uptake of nucleosides and nucleobases across the plasma membrane, mostly for salvage purposes. The canonical NTs belong to two gene families, SLC29 and SLC28. The former encode equilibrative nucleoside transporter proteins (ENTs), which mediate the facilitative diffusion of natural nucleosides with broad selectivity, whereas the latter encode concentrative nucleoside transporters (CNTs), which are sodium-coupled and show high affinity for substrates with variable selectivity. These proteins are expressed in most cell types, exhibiting apparent functional redundancy. This might indicate that CNTs have specific roles in the physiology of the cell beyond nucleoside salvage. Here, we addressed this possibility using adenoviral vectors to restore tumor cell expression of hCNT1 or a polymorphic variant (hCNT1S546P) lacking nucleoside translocation ability. We found that hCNT1 restoration in pancreatic cancer cells significantly altered cell-cycle progression and phosphorylation status of key signal-transducing kinases, promoted poly-(ADP-ribose) polymerase hyperactivation and cell death and reduced cell migration. Importantly, the translocation-defective transporter triggered these same effects on cell physiology. Moreover, this study also shows that restoration of hCNT1 expression is able to reduce tumor growth in a mouse model of pancreatic adenocarcinoma. These data predict a novel role for a NT protein, hCNT1, which appears to be independent of its role as mediator of nucleoside uptake by cells. Thereby, hCNT1 fits the profile of a transceptor in a substrate translocation-independent manner and is likely to be relevant to tumor biology. PMID:23722537

  13. Discovery of Anti-inflammatory Ingredients in Chinese Herbal Formula Kouyanqing Granule based on Relevance Analysis between Chemical Characters and Biological Effects.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hong; Zheng, Yan-fang; Li, Chu-yuan; Zheng, Yu-ying; Wang, De-qin; Wu, Zhong; Huang, Lin; Wang, Yong-gang; Li, Pei-bo; Peng, Wei; Su, Wei-wei

    2015-01-01

    Kouyanqing Granule (KYQG) is a traditional Chinese herbal formula composed of Flos lonicerae (FL), Radix scrophulariae (RS), Radix ophiopogonis (RO), Radix asparagi (RA), and Radix et rhizoma glycyrrhizae (RG). In contrast with the typical method of separating and then biologicalily testing the components individually, this study was designed to establish an approach in order to define the core bioactive ingredients of the anti-inflammatory effects of KYQG based on the relevance analysis between chemical characters and biological effects. Eleven KYQG samples with different ingredients were prepared by changing the ratios of the 5 herbs. Thirty-eight ingredients in KYQG were identified using Ultra-fast liquid chromatography-Diode array detector-Quadrupole-Time-of-flight-Tandem mass spectrometry (UFLC-DAD-Q-TOF-MS/MS) technology. Human oral keratinocytes (HOK) were cultured for 24 hours with 5% of Cigarette smoke extract (CSE) to induce inflammation stress. Interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-8 (IL-8), and tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) were evaluated after treatment with the eleven KYQG samples. Grey relational analysis(GRA), Pearson's correlations (PCC), and partial least-squares (PLS) were utilized to evaluate the contribution of each ingredient. The results indicated that KYQG significantly reduced interleukin-1β, interleukin-6, interleukin-8, and tumour necrosis factor-α levels, in which lysine, γ-aminobutyric acid, chelidonic acid, tyrosine, harpagide, neochlorogenic acid, chlorogenic acid, cryptochlorogenic acid, isoquercitrin, luteolin-7-o-glucoside, 3,4-dicaffeoylquinic acid, 3,5-dicaffeoylquinic acid, angoroside C, harpagoside, cinnamic acid, and ruscogenin play a vital role. PMID:26657159

  14. Accessing a Biologically Relevant Benzofuran Skeleton by a One-Pot Tandem Heck Alkynylation/Cyclization Reaction Using Well-Defined Palladium N-Heterocyclic Carbene Complexes.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Anuj; Gangwar, Manoj Kumar; Prakasham, A P; Mhatre, Darshan; Kalita, Alok Ch; Ghosh, Prasenjit

    2016-03-21

    Well-defined palladium N-heterocyclic carbene (NHC) complexes were employed in the one-pot tandem Heck alkynylation/cyclization sequence for preparing biologically relevant benzofuran compounds under copper-free conditions in a time-efficient step-reduced fashion. In particular, a series of binuclear palladium complexes, 1b-1e and 2b-2e, of the alkyl-bridged NHC ligands, namely, {1,1'-di-R1-4,4'-R2-di-1,2,4-triazoline-5,5'-diylid-2-ene] (R1 = i-Pr; R2 = -(CH2)2-, -(CH2)3-), and their mononuclear analogues, trans-(NHC)PdBr2(pyridine) (3b) and cis-(NHC)PdBr2(PPh3) (3c), successfully catalyzed the one-pot tandem Heck alkynylation/cyclization reaction of 2-iodophenol with a variety of terminal alkyne substrates, yielding 2-substituted benzofuran derivatives. The mononuclear complexes 3b and 3c were nearly half as active as the representative dinuclear analogue 1c under analogous reaction conditions, thereby implying that, at the same mole percent of the palladium loading, the monometallic 3b and 3c and the bimetallic 1c complexes were equally effective as catalysts. The two sites of the bimetallic complex 1c performed as two separate independent catalytic sites, displaying no cooperativity effect in the catalysis. Finally, the practical utility of the aforementioned catalysts was demonstrated for a representative catalyst 1c through the convenient synthesis of a key intermediate, 3-[2-(benzo[d][1,3]dioxol-5-yl)-7-methoxybenzofuran-5-yl]propan-1-ol, in a total-synthesis protocol of the natural product Egonol. PMID:26928799

  15. Discovery of Anti-inflammatory Ingredients in Chinese Herbal Formula Kouyanqing Granule based on Relevance Analysis between Chemical Characters and Biological Effects

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Hong; Zheng, Yan-fang; Li, Chu-yuan; Zheng, Yu-ying; Wang, De-qin; Wu, Zhong; Huang, Lin; Wang, Yong-gang; Li, Pei-bo; Peng, Wei; Su, Wei-wei

    2015-01-01

    Kouyanqing Granule (KYQG) is a traditional Chinese herbal formula composed of Flos lonicerae (FL), Radix scrophulariae (RS), Radix ophiopogonis (RO), Radix asparagi (RA), and Radix et rhizoma glycyrrhizae (RG). In contrast with the typical method of separating and then biologicalily testing the components individually, this study was designed to establish an approach in order to define the core bioactive ingredients of the anti-inflammatory effects of KYQG based on the relevance analysis between chemical characters and biological effects. Eleven KYQG samples with different ingredients were prepared by changing the ratios of the 5 herbs. Thirty-eight ingredients in KYQG were identified using Ultra-fast liquid chromatography-Diode array detector-Quadrupole-Time-of-flight-Tandem mass spectrometry (UFLC-DAD-Q-TOF-MS/MS) technology. Human oral keratinocytes (HOK) were cultured for 24 hours with 5% of Cigarette smoke extract (CSE) to induce inflammation stress. Interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-8 (IL-8), and tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) were evaluated after treatment with the eleven KYQG samples. Grey relational analysis(GRA), Pearson’s correlations (PCC), and partial least-squares (PLS) were utilized to evaluate the contribution of each ingredient. The results indicated that KYQG significantly reduced interleukin-1β, interleukin-6, interleukin-8, and tumour necrosis factor-α levels, in which lysine, γ-aminobutyric acid, chelidonic acid, tyrosine, harpagide, neochlorogenic acid, chlorogenic acid, cryptochlorogenic acid, isoquercitrin, luteolin-7-o-glucoside, 3,4-dicaffeoylquinic acid, 3,5-dicaffeoylquinic acid, angoroside C, harpagoside, cinnamic acid, and ruscogenin play a vital role. PMID:26657159

  16. Herpetofauna of the Beni Biological Station Biosphere Reserve, Amazonian Bolivia: Additional information, and current knowledge in context

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Middendorf, G.; Reynolds, R.

    2000-01-01

    Previous collections in the Departamento del Beni in tropical Bolivia only hinted at high levels of herpetological biodiversity (Fugler 1986, 1988; de la Riva 1990a; Fugler and de la Riva 1990). Fieldwork (totaling 48 days) in July-August 1988 and September 1987 (dry seasons) and November-December 1990 (wet season) has resulted in collection and identification of 401 amphibian and reptilian specimens from the general area of the Beni Biological Station's (EBB) headquarters at El Porvenir. These collections represent 33 amphibian and 17 reptilian species in 29 genera (14 amphibian, 15 reptilian). The inventory of herpetofauna scientifically documented to occur in the Departamento del Beni is considered to have been increased by 6 amphibian and 10 reptilian species. Specimens that could not be definitively identified (reflecting taxonomic uncertainty and/or probably species new to science) include 3 amphibian species (anurans) and 2 reptilian species (snakes). The EBB harbors the richest savanna for anuran species known in South America.

  17. Extraction and analysis methods for the determination of pyrethroid insecticides in surface water, sediments and biological tissues at environmentally relevant concentrations.

    PubMed

    Mekebri, A; Crane, D B; Blondina, G J; Oros, D R; Rocca, J L

    2008-05-01

    The aim of this study was to develop and validate chemical methods for measuring pyrethroid insecticides at environmentally relevant concentrations in different matrices. The analytes included six synthetic pyrethroids with the highest agricultural and commercial structural uses in California: bifenthrin, cyfluthrin, cypermethrin, esfenvalerate/fenvalerate, lambda-cyhalothrin, permethrin, and their corresponding stereoisomers, which includes enantiomers, diastereomers and racemic mixtures. Fortified water samples were extracted for analysis of synthetic pyrethroids using liquid-liquid extraction, while fortified sediment and fish tissue samples were extracted using pressurized fluid extraction followed by gel permeation chromatography (GPC) to remove matrix interferences. A florisil column was used for additional cleanup and fractionation of sediment and tissue extracts. Extracts were analyzed using dual column high resolution gas chromatography with electron capture detection (GC/ECD) and confirmation was obtained with gas chromatography mass spectrometry using a quadrupole ion trap detector in MS-MS mode. Method detection limits (MDLs) have been established for water (1-3 ng/L), sediment (0.5-4 ng/g dry weight) and tissue (1-3 ng/g fresh weight). Mean percent recoveries of fortified blanks and samples ranged from 75 to 115% with relative standard deviation (RSD) values less than 20% for all target compounds. PMID:18369521

  18. Improvement of mechanical and biological properties of TiNi alloys by addition of Cu and Co to orthodontic archwires.

    PubMed

    Phukaoluan, Aphinan; Khantachawana, Anak; Kaewtatip, Pongpan; Dechkunakorn, Surachai; Kajornchaiyakul, Julathep

    2016-09-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate improved performances of TiNi in order to promote tooth movement. Special attention was paid to the effect on the clinical properties of TiNi of adding Cu and Co to this alloy. Ti49.4Ni50.6, Ti49Ni46Cu5 and Ti50Ni47Co3 (at %) alloys were prepared. Specimens were cold-rolled at 30% reduction and heat-treated at 400°C for 60min. Then, the test results were compared with two types of commercial archwires. The findings showed that superelasticity properties were confirmed in the manufactured commercial alloys at mouth temperature. The difference of stress plateau in TiNi, TiNiCo and commercial wires B at 25°C changed significantly at various testing temperatures due to the combination of martensite and austenite phases. At certain temperatures the alloys exhibited zero recovery stress at 2% strain and consequently produced zero activation force for moving teeth. The corrosion test showed that the addition of Cu and Co to TiNi alloys generates an increase in corrosion potential (Ecorr) and corrosion current densities (Icorr). Finally, we observed that addition of Cu and Co improved cell viability. We conclude that addition of an appropriate amount of a third alloying element can help enhance the performances of TiNi orthodontic archwires. PMID:27520713

  19. Systems Biological Approaches Reveal Non-additive Responses and Multiple Crosstalk Mechanisms between TLR and GPCR Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Krishnan, Jayalakshmi

    2012-01-01

    A variety of ligands differ in their capacity to bind the receptor, elicit gene expression, and modulate physiological responses. Such receptors include Toll-like receptors (TLRs), which recognize various patterns of pathogens and lead to primary innate immune activation against invaders, and G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), whose interaction with their cognate ligands activates heterotrimeric G proteins and regulates specific downstream effectors, including immuno-stimulating molecules. Once TLRs are activated, they lead to the expression of hundreds of genes together and bridge the arm of innate and adaptive immune responses. We characterized the gene expression profile of Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) in RAW 264.7 cells when it bound with its ligand, 2-keto-3-deoxyoctonate (KDO), the active part of lipopolysaccharide. In addition, to determine the network communications among the TLR, Janus kinase (JAK)/signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT), and GPCR, we tested RAW 264.7 cells with KDO, interferon-β, or cAMP analog 8-Br. The ligands were also administered as a pair of double and triple combinations. PMID:23166526

  20. An anatomical, histopathological, and molecular biological function study of the fascias posterior to the interperitoneal colon and its associated mesocolon: their relevance to colonic surgery

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Zhidong; Ye, Yingjiang; Zhang, Weiguang; Shen, Danhua; Zhong, Yanfeng; Jiang, Kewei; Yang, Xiaodong; Yin, Mujun; Liang, Bin; Tian, Long; Wang, Shan

    2013-01-01

    The study aim was to explore the anatomy, histopathology, and molecular biological function of the fascias posterior to the interperitoneal colon and its mesocolon to provide information for improving complete mesocolic excision. To accomplish this aim, we performed intraoperative observations in 60 interperitoneal colon-cancer patients accepted for complete mesocolic excision and conducted local anatomy observations for five embalmed cadavers. An additional two embalmed child cadaver specimens were studied with large slices and paraffin sections. Ten of the 60 patients were examined with a lymph node tracer technique in vivo, while fresh specimens from these patients were assessed by histopathological examination and transwell cell migration assays in vitro. The anatomical and histopathological findings showed that the fascias posterior to the interperitoneal colon and its associated mesocolon were composed of two independent layers: the visceral and parietal fascias. These two fascias were primarily composed of collagen fibers, with the parietal fascia containing a small amount of muscle fiber. The in vivo test showed that the visceral fascia surrounded the colon and its associated mesocolon, including vessels and lymphatics, and that it had no lymphatic flow through it into the rear tissues. Moreover, the in vitro assays showed the visceral fascia was able to block tumor cell migration. Although many surgical scholars have known of the existence of fascia tissue posterior to the intraperitoneal colon, the detailed structure has been ignored and been unclear. As shown by our findings, the visceral and parietal fascias are truly formed structures that have not been previously reported. A thorough understanding of fascial structures and the function of the visceral fascia barrier in blocking tumor cells will facilitate surgeons when performing high-quality complete mesocolic excision procedures. PMID:23721400

  1. Relevancy 101

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lynnes, Chris; Newman, Doug

    2016-01-01

    Where we present an overview on why relevancy is a problem, how important it is and how we can improve it. The topic of relevancy is becoming increasingly important in earth data discovery as our audience is tuned to the accuracy of standard search engines like Google.

  2. [Effects of understory removal and nitrogen addition on the soil chemical and biological properties of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica plantation in Keerqin Sandy Land].

    PubMed

    Lin, Gui-Gang; Zhao, Qiong; Zhao, Lei; Li, Hui-Chao; Zeng, De-Hui

    2012-05-01

    A full factorial experiment was conducted to study the effects of understory removal and nitrogen addition (8 g x m(-2)) on the soil NO(3-)-N and NH(4+)-N concentrations, potential net nitrogen mineralization rate (PNM) and nitrification rate (PNN), microbial biomass C (MBC) and N (MBN), MBC/MBN, urease and acid phosphomonoesterase activities, and Olsen-P concentration in a Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica plantation in Keerqin Sandy Land during a growth season. Understory removal decreased the soil NH(4+)-N concentration, PNM, MBC, and MBN/MBN significantly, increased the soil Olsen-P concentration, but had little effects on the soil NO(3-)-N concentration, PNN, and urease and acid phosphomonoesterase activities. Nitrogen addition increased the soil NO(3-)-N concentration, PNM and PNN significantly, but had little effects on the other test properties. The interaction between understory removal and nitrogen addition had significant effects on the soil NH(4+)-N concentration, but little effects on the soil NO(3-)-N concentration. However, the soil NO(3-)-N concentration in the plots of understory removal with nitrogen addition was increased by 27%, compared with the plots of nitrogen addition alone, which might lead to the leaching of NO3-. It was suggested that understory vegetation could play an important role in affecting the soil chemical and biological properties in Mongolian pine plantations, and hence, the importance of understory vegetation should not be neglected when the forest management and restoration were implemented. PMID:22919826

  3. Microbial ecology and performance of ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) in biological processes treating petrochemical wastewater with high strength of ammonia: effect of Na(2)CO(3) addition.

    PubMed

    Whang, L M; Yang, K H; Yang, Y F; Han, Y L; Chen, Y J; Cheng, S S

    2009-01-01

    This study evaluated nitrification performance and microbial ecology of AOB in a full-scale biological process, powder activated carbon treatment (PACT), and a pilot-scale biological process, moving bed biofilm reactor (MBBR), treating wastewater collected from a petrochemical industry park. The petrochemical influent wastewater characteristics showed a relative low carbon to nitrogen ratio around 1 with average COD and ammonia concentrations of 310 mg/L and 325 mg-N/L, respectively. The average nitrification efficiency of the full-scale PACT process was around 11% during this study. For the pilot-scale MBBR, the average nitrification efficiency was 24% during the Run I operation mode, which provided a slightly better performance in nitrification than that of the PACT process. During the Run II operation, the pH control mode was switched from addition of NaOH to Na(2)CO(3), leading to a significant improvement in nitrification efficiency of 51%. In addition to a dramatic change in nitrification performance, the microbial ecology of AOB, monitored with the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) molecular methodology, was found to be different between Runs I and II. The amoA-based TRFLP results indicated that Nitrosomonas europaea lineage was the dominant AOB population during Run I operation, while Nitrosospira-like AOB was dominant during Run II operation. To confirm the effects of Na(2)CO(3) addition on the nitrification performance and AOB microbial ecology observed in the MBBR process, batch experiments were conducted. The results suggest that addition of Na(2)CO(3) as a pH control strategy can improve nitrification performance and also influence AOB microbial ecology as well. Although the exact mechanisms are not clear at this time, the results showing the effects of adding different buffering chemicals such as NaOH or Na(2)CO(3) on AOB populations have never been demonstrated until this study. PMID:19182331

  4. Influence of powdered activated carbon addition on water quality, sludge properties, and microbial characteristics in the biological treatment of commingled industrial wastewater.

    PubMed

    Hu, Qing-Yuan; Li, Meng; Wang, Can; Ji, Min

    2015-09-15

    A powdered activated carbon-activated sludge (PAC-AS) system, a traditional activated sludge (AS) system, and a powdered activated carbon (PAC) system were operated to examine the insights into the influence of PAC addition on biological treatment. The average COD removal efficiencies of the PAC-AS system (39%) were nearly double that of the AS system (20%). Compared with the average efficiencies of the PAC system (7%), COD removal by biodegradation in the PAC-AS system was remarkably higher than that in the AS system. The analysis of the influence of PAC on water quality and sludge properties showed that PAC facilitated the removal of hydrophobic matter and metabolic acidic products, and also enhanced the biomass accumulation, sludge settleability, and specific oxygen uptake rate inside the biological system. The microbial community structures in the PAC-AS and AS systems were monitored. The results showed that the average well color development in the PAC-AS system was higher than that in the AS system. The utilization of various substrates by microorganisms in the two systems did not differ. The dissimilarity index was far less than one; thus, showing that the microbial community structures of the two systems were the same. PMID:25863578

  5. CHARMM General Force Field (CGenFF): A force field for drug-like molecules compatible with the CHARMM all-atom additive biological force fields

    PubMed Central

    Vanommeslaeghe, K.; Hatcher, E.; Acharya, C.; Kundu, S.; Zhong, S.; Shim, J.; Darian, E.; Guvench, O.; Lopes, P.; Vorobyov, I.; MacKerell, A. D.

    2010-01-01

    The widely used CHARMM additive all-atom force field includes parameters for proteins, nucleic acids, lipids and carbohydrates. In the present paper an extension of the CHARMM force field to drug-like molecules is presented. The resulting CHARMM General Force Field (CGenFF) covers a wide range of chemical groups present in biomolecules and drug-like molecules, including a large number of heterocyclic scaffolds. The parametrization philosophy behind the force field focuses on quality at the expense of transferability, with the implementation concentrating on an extensible force field. Statistics related to the quality of the parametrization with a focus on experimental validation are presented. Additionally, the parametrization procedure, described fully in the present paper in the context of the model systems, pyrrolidine, and 3-phenoxymethylpyrrolidine will allow users to readily extend the force field to chemical groups that are not explicitly covered in the force field as well as add functional groups to and link together molecules already available in the force field. CGenFF thus makes it possible to perform “all-CHARMM” simulations on drug-target interactions thereby extending the utility of CHARMM force fields to medicinally relevant systems. PMID:19575467

  6. Additive effects of predator cues and dimethoate on different levels of biological organisation in the non-biting midge Chironomus riparius.

    PubMed

    Van Praet, Nander; De Jonge, Maarten; Stoks, Robby; Bervoets, Lieven

    2014-10-01

    The combined effects of a pesticide and predation risk on sublethal endpoints in the midge Chironomus riparius were investigated using a combination of predator-release kairomones from common carp (Cyprinus carpio) and alarm substances from conspecifics together with the pesticide dimethoate. Midge larvae were exposed for 30 days to three sublethal dimethoate concentrations (0.01, 0.1 and 0.25 mg L(-1)) in the presence or absence of predator cues. Sublethal endpoints were analysed at different levels of biological organisation. Available energy reserves, enzyme biomarkers, feeding rate and life history endpoints were investigated. Three endpoints were significantly affected by the two highest dimethoate concentrations, i.e. AChE activity, age at emergence and emergence success, with a significant decrease in response after exposure to 0.25, 0.1 and 0.01 mg L(-1) dimethoate, respectively. Four sublethal endpoints were significantly affected by predator stress: Total protein content, GST activity and biomass decreased only in the presence of the predation risk, while AChE activity further decreased significantly in the presence of predation cues and effects on AChE of combined exposure were additive. From this study we can conclude that sublethal life history characteristics should be included in ecotoxicity testing as well as natural environmental stressors such as predator stress, which might act additively with pollutants on fitness related endpoints. PMID:25063887

  7. Density functional theory estimation of isotope fractionation of Fe, Ni, Cu, and Zn among species relevant to geochemical and biological environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujii, Toshiyuki; Moynier, Frédéric; Blichert-Toft, Janne; Albarède, Francis

    2014-09-01

    This paper reports the values of reduced partition function ratios (as 1000 ln β) for Fe, Ni, Cu, and Zn bound to a number of inorganic and organic ligands. We used Density Functional Techniques to update the existing data and calculate ln β for new ligands. This work allows for the mass-dependent isotope fractionation to be predicted for various inorganic (hydrated cation, hydroxide, chloride, sulfate, sulfide, phosphate) and organic (citrate, amino acid) complexes of Fe, Ni, Cu, and Zn. Isotope fractionation among coexisting complexes of these metals was evaluated from the ln β values in a variety of geochemical and biological environments. The results provide a framework for interpretation of isotope fractionation observed in seawater and chemical sediments, in the roots and aerial parts of plants, and among the organs and body fluids of mammals.

  8. Evaluation of colloidal silica suspension as efficient additive for improving physicochemical and in vitro biological properties of calcium sulfate-based nanocomposite bone cement.

    PubMed

    Borhan, Shokoufeh; Hesaraki, Saeed; Ahmadzadeh-Asl, Shaghayegh

    2010-12-01

    In the present study new calcium sulfate-based nanocomposite bone cement with improved physicochemical and biological properties was developed. The powder component of the cement consists of 60 wt% α-calcium sulfate hemihydrate and 40 wt% biomimetically synthesized apatite, while the liquid component consists of an aqueous colloidal silica suspension (20 wt%). In this study, the above mentioned powder phase was mixed with distilled water to prepare a calcium sulfate/nanoapatite composite without any additive. Structural properties, setting time, compressive strength, in vitro bioactivity and cellular properties of the cements were investigated by appropriate techniques. From X-ray diffractometer analysis, except gypsum and apatite, no further phases were found in both silica-containing and silica-free cements. The results showed that both setting time and compressive strength of the calcium sulfate/nanoapatite cement improved by using colloidal silica suspension as cement liquid. Meanwhile, the condensed phase produced from the polymerization process of colloidal silica filled the micropores of the microstructure and covered rodlike gypsum crystals and thus controlled cement disintegration in simulated body fluid. Additionally, formation of apatite layer was favored on the surfaces of the new cement while no apatite precipitation was observed for the cement prepared by distilled water. In this study, it was also revealed that the number of viable osteosarcoma cells cultured with extracts of both cements were comparable, while silica-containing cement increased alkaline phosphatase activity of the cells. These results suggest that the developed cement may be a suitable bone filling material after well passing of the corresponding in vivo tests. PMID:20972610

  9. Characterization of the bridged hyponitrite complex {[Fe(OEP)](2)(μ-N(2)O(2))}: reactivity of hyponitrite complexes and biological relevance.

    PubMed

    Berto, Timothy C; Xu, Nan; Lee, Se Ryeon; McNeil, Anne J; Alp, E Ercan; Zhao, Jiyong; Richter-Addo, George B; Lehnert, Nicolai

    2014-07-01

    The detoxification of nitric oxide (NO) by bacterial NO reductase (NorBC) represents a paradigm of how NO can be detoxified anaerobically in cells. In order to elucidate the mechanism of this enzyme, model complexes provide a convenient means to assess potential reaction intermediates. In particular, there have been many proposed mechanisms that invoke the formation of a hyponitrite bridge between the heme b3 and nonheme iron (FeB) centers within the NorBC active site. However, the reactivity of bridged iron hyponitrite complexes has not been investigated much in the literature. The model complex {[Fe(OEP)]2(μ-N2O2)} offers a unique opportunity to study the electronic structure and reactivity of such a hyponitrite-bridged complex. Here we report the detailed characterization of {[Fe(OEP)]2(μ-N2O2)} using a combination of IR, nuclear resonance vibrational spectroscopy, electron paramagnetic resonance, and magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopy along with SQUID magnetometry. These results show that the ground-state electronic structure of this complex is best described as having two intermediate-spin (S = (3)/2) iron centers that are weakly antiferromagnetically coupled across the N2O2(2-) bridge. The analogous complex {[Fe(PPDME)]2(μ-N2O2)} shows overall similar properties. Finally, we report the unexpected reaction of {[Fe(OEP)]2(μ-N2O2)} in the presence and absence of 1-methylimidizole to yield [Fe(OEP)(NO)]. Density functional theory calculations are used to rationalize why {[Fe(OEP)]2(μ-N2O2)} cannot be formed directly by dimerization of [Fe(OEP)(NO)] and why only the reverse reaction is observed experimentally. These results thus provide insight into the general reactivity of hyponitrite-bridged iron complexes with general relevance for the N-N bond-forming step in NorBC. PMID:24971721

  10. Insight into the structural and biological relevance of the T/R transition of the N-terminus of the B-chain in human insulin.

    PubMed

    Kosinová, Lucie; Veverka, Václav; Novotná, Pavlína; Collinsová, Michaela; Urbanová, Marie; Moody, Nicholas R; Turkenburg, Johan P; Jiráček, Jiří; Brzozowski, Andrzej M; Žáková, Lenka

    2014-06-01

    The N-terminus of the B-chain of insulin may adopt two alternative conformations designated as the T- and R-states. Despite the recent structural insight into insulin-insulin receptor (IR) complexes, the physiological relevance of the T/R transition is still unclear. Hence, this study focused on the rational design, synthesis, and characterization of human insulin analogues structurally locked in expected R- or T-states. Sites B3, B5, and B8, capable of affecting the conformation of the N-terminus of the B-chain, were subjects of rational substitutions with amino acids with specific allowed and disallowed dihedral φ and ψ main-chain angles. α-Aminoisobutyric acid was systematically incorporated into positions B3, B5, and B8 for stabilization of the R-state, and N-methylalanine and d-proline amino acids were introduced at position B8 for stabilization of the T-state. IR affinities of the analogues were compared and correlated with their T/R transition ability and analyzed against their crystal and nuclear magnetic resonance structures. Our data revealed that (i) the T-like state is indeed important for the folding efficiency of (pro)insulin, (ii) the R-state is most probably incompatible with an active form of insulin, (iii) the R-state cannot be induced or stabilized by a single substitution at a specific site, and (iv) the B1-B8 segment is capable of folding into a variety of low-affinity T-like states. Therefore, we conclude that the active conformation of the N-terminus of the B-chain must be different from the "classical" T-state and that a substantial flexibility of the B1-B8 segment, where GlyB8 plays a key role, is a crucial prerequisite for an efficient insulin-IR interaction. PMID:24819248

  11. Insight into the Structural and Biological Relevance of the T/R Transition of the N-Terminus of the B-Chain in Human Insulin

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The N-terminus of the B-chain of insulin may adopt two alternative conformations designated as the T- and R-states. Despite the recent structural insight into insulin–insulin receptor (IR) complexes, the physiological relevance of the T/R transition is still unclear. Hence, this study focused on the rational design, synthesis, and characterization of human insulin analogues structurally locked in expected R- or T-states. Sites B3, B5, and B8, capable of affecting the conformation of the N-terminus of the B-chain, were subjects of rational substitutions with amino acids with specific allowed and disallowed dihedral φ and ψ main-chain angles. α-Aminoisobutyric acid was systematically incorporated into positions B3, B5, and B8 for stabilization of the R-state, and N-methylalanine and d-proline amino acids were introduced at position B8 for stabilization of the T-state. IR affinities of the analogues were compared and correlated with their T/R transition ability and analyzed against their crystal and nuclear magnetic resonance structures. Our data revealed that (i) the T-like state is indeed important for the folding efficiency of (pro)insulin, (ii) the R-state is most probably incompatible with an active form of insulin, (iii) the R-state cannot be induced or stabilized by a single substitution at a specific site, and (iv) the B1–B8 segment is capable of folding into a variety of low-affinity T-like states. Therefore, we conclude that the active conformation of the N-terminus of the B-chain must be different from the “classical” T-state and that a substantial flexibility of the B1–B8 segment, where GlyB8 plays a key role, is a crucial prerequisite for an efficient insulin–IR interaction. PMID:24819248

  12. A paradigm shift in EPH receptor interaction: biological relevance of EPHB6 interaction with EPHA2 and EPHB2 in breast carcinoma cell lines.

    PubMed

    Fox, Brian P; Kandpal, Raj P

    2011-01-01

    EPH receptors are the largest known family of receptor tyrosine kinases characterized in humans. These proteins are involved in axon guidance, tissue organization, synaptic plasticity, vascular development and the progression of various diseases including cancer. The varied biological effects of EPH receptors are mediated in part by the expression of these proteins and their intracellular binding proteins. The ability of EPH molecules to form heterodimers within their own class has been suggested, although not exhaustively characterized. We have clarified this phenomenon by showing that EPHB6, a kinase-deficient receptor, can interact with EPHB2 in mammalian cells, and more significantly EPHB6 interacts with EPHA2. However, EPHB6 does not interact with another kinase-deficient receptor, EPHA10. The interaction between EPHB6 and EPHA2 is the first demonstration of an A-type receptor interacting with a B-type receptor. Furthermore, we correlated relative expression of EPHB6, EPHB2 and EPHA2 with non-invasive and invasive phenotypes of breast tumor cell lines. Our results indicate that tumor invasiveness-suppressing activity of EPHB6 is mediated by its ability to sequester other kinase-sufficient and oncogenic EPH receptors. These observations suggest that cellular phenotypes may, in part, be attributed to a combinatorial expression of EPH receptors and heteromeric interactions among the same class, as well as between two classes, of EPH receptors. Our results also suggest that EPHA10 may transduce signals by interacting with other kinase-sufficient receptors in a similar manner. PMID:21737611

  13. 3D tumor spheroid models for in vitro therapeutic screening: a systematic approach to enhance the biological relevance of data obtained.

    PubMed

    Zanoni, Michele; Piccinini, Filippo; Arienti, Chiara; Zamagni, Alice; Santi, Spartaco; Polico, Rolando; Bevilacqua, Alessandro; Tesei, Anna

    2016-01-01

    The potential of a spheroid tumor model composed of cells in different proliferative and metabolic states for the development of new anticancer strategies has been amply demonstrated. However, there is little or no information in the literature on the problems of reproducibility of data originating from experiments using 3D models. Our analyses, carried out using a novel open source software capable of performing an automatic image analysis of 3D tumor colonies, showed that a number of morphology parameters affect the response of large spheroids to treatment. In particular, we found that both spheroid volume and shape may be a source of variability. We also compared some commercially available viability assays specifically designed for 3D models. In conclusion, our data indicate the need for a pre-selection of tumor spheroids of homogeneous volume and shape to reduce data variability to a minimum before use in a cytotoxicity test. In addition, we identified and validated a cytotoxicity test capable of providing meaningful data on the damage induced in large tumor spheroids of up to diameter in 650 μm by different kinds of treatments. PMID:26752500

  14. 3D tumor spheroid models for in vitro therapeutic screening: a systematic approach to enhance the biological relevance of data obtained

    PubMed Central

    Zanoni, Michele; Piccinini, Filippo; Arienti, Chiara; Zamagni, Alice; Santi, Spartaco; Polico, Rolando; Bevilacqua, Alessandro; Tesei, Anna

    2016-01-01

    The potential of a spheroid tumor model composed of cells in different proliferative and metabolic states for the development of new anticancer strategies has been amply demonstrated. However, there is little or no information in the literature on the problems of reproducibility of data originating from experiments using 3D models. Our analyses, carried out using a novel open source software capable of performing an automatic image analysis of 3D tumor colonies, showed that a number of morphology parameters affect the response of large spheroids to treatment. In particular, we found that both spheroid volume and shape may be a source of variability. We also compared some commercially available viability assays specifically designed for 3D models. In conclusion, our data indicate the need for a pre-selection of tumor spheroids of homogeneous volume and shape to reduce data variability to a minimum before use in a cytotoxicity test. In addition, we identified and validated a cytotoxicity test capable of providing meaningful data on the damage induced in large tumor spheroids of up to diameter in 650 μm by different kinds of treatments. PMID:26752500

  15. Selection of appropriate tumour data sets for Benchmark Dose Modelling (BMD) and derivation of a Margin of Exposure (MoE) for substances that are genotoxic and carcinogenic: considerations of biological relevance of tumour type, data quality and uncertainty assessment.

    PubMed

    Edler, Lutz; Hart, Andy; Greaves, Peter; Carthew, Philip; Coulet, Myriam; Boobis, Alan; Williams, Gary M; Smith, Benjamin

    2014-08-01

    This article addresses a number of concepts related to the selection and modelling of carcinogenicity data for the calculation of a Margin of Exposure. It follows up on the recommendations put forward by the International Life Sciences Institute - European branch in 2010 on the application of the Margin of Exposure (MoE) approach to substances in food that are genotoxic and carcinogenic. The aims are to provide practical guidance on the relevance of animal tumour data for human carcinogenic hazard assessment, appropriate selection of tumour data for Benchmark Dose Modelling, and approaches for dealing with the uncertainty associated with the selection of data for modelling and, consequently, the derived Point of Departure (PoD) used to calculate the MoE. Although the concepts outlined in this article are interrelated, the background expertise needed to address each topic varies. For instance, the expertise needed to make a judgement on biological relevance of a specific tumour type is clearly different to that needed to determine the statistical uncertainty around the data used for modelling a benchmark dose. As such, each topic is dealt with separately to allow those with specialised knowledge to target key areas of guidance and provide a more in-depth discussion on each subject for those new to the concept of the Margin of Exposure approach. PMID:24176677

  16. Mechanism and biological relevance of blue-light (420-453 nm)-induced nonenzymatic nitric oxide generation from photolabile nitric oxide derivates in human skin in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Opländer, Christian; Deck, Annika; Volkmar, Christine M; Kirsch, Michael; Liebmann, Jörg; Born, Matthias; van Abeelen, Frank; van Faassen, Ernst E; Kröncke, Klaus-Dietrich; Windolf, Joachim; Suschek, Christoph V

    2013-12-01

    Human skin contains photolabile nitric oxide (NO) derivates such as nitrite and S-nitrosothiols, which upon UVA radiation decompose under high-output NO formation and exert NO-specific biological responses such as increased local blood flow or reduced blood pressure. To avoid the injurious effects of UVA radiation, we here investigated the mechanism and biological relevance of blue-light (420-453 nm)-induced nonenzymatic NO generation from photolabile nitric oxide derivates in human skin in vitro and in vivo. As quantified by chemiluminescence detection (CLD), at physiological pH blue light at 420 or 453 nm induced a significant NO formation from S-nitrosoalbumin and also from aqueous nitrite solutions by a to-date not entirely identified Cu(1+)-dependent mechanism. As detected by electron paramagnetic resonance spectrometry in vitro with human skin specimens, blue light irradiation significantly increased the intradermal levels of free NO. As detected by CLD in vivo in healthy volunteers, irradiation of human skin with blue light induced a significant emanation of NO from the irradiated skin area as well as a significant translocation of NO from the skin surface into the underlying tissue. In parallel, blue light irradiation caused a rapid and significant rise in local cutaneous blood flow as detected noninvasively by using micro-light-guide spectrophotometry. Irradiation of human skin with moderate doses of blue light caused a significant increase in enzyme-independent cutaneous NO formation as well as NO-dependent local biological responses, i.e., increased blood flow. The effects were attributed to blue-light-induced release of NO from cutaneous photolabile NO derivates. Thus, in contrast to UVA, blue-light-induced NO generation might be therapeutically used in the treatment of systemic and local hemodynamic disorders that are based on impaired physiological NO production or bioavailability. PMID:24121056

  17. Biology and clinical relevance of granulysin

    PubMed Central

    Krensky, A. M.; Clayberger, C.

    2009-01-01

    Granulysin is a cytolytic and proinflammatory molecule first identified by a screen for genes expressed ‘late’ (3–5 days) after activation of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Granulysin is present in cytolytic granules of cytotoxic T lymphocytes and natural killer cells. Granulysin is made in a 15-kDa form that is cleaved into a 9-kDa form at both the amino and the carboxy termini. The 15-kDa form is constitutively secreted, and its function remains poorly understood. The 9-kDa form is released by receptor-mediated granule exocytosis. Nine kiloDalton granulysin is broadly cytolytic against tumors and microbes, including gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, fungi/yeast and parasites. It kills the causative agents of both tuberculosis and malaria. Granulysin is also a chemoattractant for T lymphocytes, monocytes and other inflammatory cells and activates the expression of a number of cytokines, including regulated upon activation T cell expressed and secreted (RANTES), monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, MCP-3, macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP)-1α, interleukin (IL)-10, IL-1, IL-6 and interferon (IFN)-α. Granulysin is implicated in a myriad of diseases including infection, cancer, transplantation, autoimmunity, skin and reproductive maladies. Small synthetic forms of granulysin are being developed as novel antibiotics. Studies of the full-length forms may give rise to new diagnostics and therapeutics for use in a wide variety of diseases. PMID:19254247

  18. Sirtuin biology and relevance to diabetes treatment

    PubMed Central

    Dong, X Charlie

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY Sirtuins are a group of NAD+-dependent enzymes that post-translationally modify histones and other proteins. Among seven mammalian sirtuins, SIRT1 has been the most extensively studied and has been demonstrated to play a critical role in all major metabolic organs and tissues. SIRT1 regulates glucose and lipid homeostasis in the liver, modulates insulin secretion in pancreatic islets, controls insulin sensitivity and glucose uptake in skeletal muscle, increases adiponectin expression in white adipose tissue and controls food intake and energy expenditure in the brain. Recently, SIRT3 has been demonstrated to modulate insulin sensitivity in skeletal muscle and systemic metabolism, and Sirt3-null mice manifest characteristics of metabolic syndrome on a high-fat diet. Thus, it is reasonable to believe that enhancing the activities of SIRT1 and SIRT3 may be beneficial for Type 2 diabetes. Although it is controversial, the SIRT1 activator SRT1720 has been reported to be effective in improving glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity in animal models. More research needs to be conducted so that we can better understand the physiological functions and molecular mechanisms of sirtuins in order to therapeutically target these enzymes for diabetes treatment. PMID:23024708

  19. Mammalian Sirtuins: Biological Insights and Disease Relevance

    PubMed Central

    Haigis, Marcia C.; Sinclair, David A.

    2010-01-01

    Aging is accompanied by a decline in the healthy function of multiple organ systems, leading to increased incidence and mortality from diseases such as type II diabetes mellitus, neurodegenerative diseases, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Historically, researchers have focused on investigating individual pathways in isolated organs as a strategy to identify the root cause of a disease, with hopes of designing better drugs. Studies of aging in yeast led to the discovery of a family of conserved enzymes known as the sirtuins, which affect multiple pathways that increase the life span and the overall health of organisms. Since the discovery of the first known mammalian sirtuin, SIRT1, 10 years ago, there have been major advances in our understanding of the enzymology of sirtuins, their regulation, and their ability to broadly improve mammalian physiology and health span. This review summarizes and discusses the advances of the past decade and the challenges that will confront the field in the coming years. PMID:20078221

  20. Nitric oxide. Novel biology with clinical relevance.

    PubMed Central

    Billiar, T R

    1995-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: The author provides the reader with a view of the regulation and function of nitric oxide (NO), based on the three distinct enzyme isoforms that synthesize NO. SUMMARY BACKGROUND DATA: Nitric oxide is a short-lived molecule exhibiting functions as diverse as neurotransmission and microbial killing. Recent advances in the characterization of the enzymes responsible for NO synthesis and in the understanding of how NO interacts with targets have led to new insights into the many facets of this diverse molecule. METHODS: Nitric oxide is produced by one of three enzyme isoforms of NO synthesis. These enzymes vary considerably in their distribution, regulation, and function. Accordingly, the NO synthesis or lack of NO production will have consequences unique to that isoform. Therefore, this review summarizes the regulation and function of NO generated by each of the three isoforms. RESULTS: Nitric oxide exhibits many unique characteristics that allow this molecule to perform so many functions. The amount, duration, and location of the NO synthesis will depend on the isoform of NO synthase expressed. For each isoform, there probably are disease processes in which deficiency states exist. For induced NO synthesis, states of overexpression exist. CONCLUSIONS: Understanding the regulation and function of the enzymes that produce NO and the unique characteristics of each enzyme isoform is likely to lead to therapeutic approaches to prevent or treat a number of diseases. PMID:7537035

  1. Prion biology relevant to bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

    PubMed

    Novakofski, J; Brewer, M S; Mateus-Pinilla, N; Killefer, J; McCusker, R H

    2005-06-01

    Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) and chronic wasting disease (CWD) of deer and elk are a threat to agriculture and natural resources, as well as a human health concern. Both diseases are transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE), or prion diseases, caused by autocatalytic conversion of endogenously encoded prion protein (PrP) to an abnormal, neurotoxic conformation designated PrPsc. Most mammalian species are susceptible to TSE, which, despite a range of species-linked names, is caused by a single highly conserved protein, with no apparent normal function. In the simplest sense, TSE transmission can occur because PrPsc is resistant to both endogenous and environmental proteinases, although many details remain unclear. Questions about the transmission of TSE are central to practical issues such as livestock testing, access to international livestock markets, and wildlife management strategies, as well as intangible issues such as consumer confidence in the safety of the meat supply. The majority of BSE cases seem to have been transmitted by feed containing meat and bone meal from infected animals. In the United Kingdom, there was a dramatic decrease in BSE cases after neural tissue and, later, all ruminant tissues were banned from ruminant feed. However, probably because of heightened awareness and widespread testing, there is growing evidence that new variants of BSE are arising "spontaneously," suggesting ongoing surveillance will continue to find infected animals. Interspecies transmission is inefficient and depends on exposure, sequence homology, TSE donor strain, genetic polymorphism of the host, and architecture of the visceral nerves if exposure is by an oral route. Considering the low probability of interspecies transmission, the low efficiency of oral transmission, and the low prion levels in nonnervous tissues, consumption of conventional animal products represents minimal risk. However, detection of rare events is challenging, and TSE literature is characterized by subsequently unsupported claims of species barriers or absolute tissue safety. This review presents an overview of TSE and summarizes recent research on pathogenesis and transmission. PMID:15890824

  2. Genetic characterization of interleukins (IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12A, IL-12B, IL-15 and IL-18) with relevant biological roles in lagomorphs

    PubMed Central

    Neves, Fabiana; Abrantes, Joana; Almeida, Tereza; de Matos, Ana Lemos; Costa, Paulo P

    2015-01-01

    ILs, as essential innate immune modulators, are involved in an array of biological processes. In the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12A, IL-12B, IL-15 and IL-18 have been implicated in inflammatory processes and in the immune response against rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus and myxoma virus infections. In this study we characterized these ILs in six Lagomorpha species (European rabbit, pygmy rabbit, two cottontail rabbit species, European brown hare and American pika). Overall, these ILs are conserved between lagomorphs, including in their exon/intron structure. Most differences were observed between leporids and American pika. Indeed, when comparing both, some relevant differences were observed in American pika, such as the location of the stop codon in IL-1α and IL-2, the existence of a different transcript in IL8 and the number of cysteine residues in IL-1β. Changes at N-glycosylation motifs were also detected in IL-1, IL-10, IL-12B and IL-15. IL-1α is the protein that presents the highest evolutionary distances, which is in contrast to IL-12A where the distances between lagomorphs are the lowest. For all these ILs, sequences of human and European rabbit are more closely related than between human and mouse or European rabbit and mouse. PMID:26395994

  3. Genetic characterization of interleukins (IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12A, IL-12B, IL-15 and IL-18) with relevant biological roles in lagomorphs.

    PubMed

    Neves, Fabiana; Abrantes, Joana; Almeida, Tereza; de Matos, Ana Lemos; Costa, Paulo P; Esteves, Pedro J

    2015-11-01

    ILs, as essential innate immune modulators, are involved in an array of biological processes. In the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12A, IL-12B, IL-15 and IL-18 have been implicated in inflammatory processes and in the immune response against rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus and myxoma virus infections. In this study we characterized these ILs in six Lagomorpha species (European rabbit, pygmy rabbit, two cottontail rabbit species, European brown hare and American pika). Overall, these ILs are conserved between lagomorphs, including in their exon/intron structure. Most differences were observed between leporids and American pika. Indeed, when comparing both, some relevant differences were observed in American pika, such as the location of the stop codon in IL-1α and IL-2, the existence of a different transcript in IL8 and the number of cysteine residues in IL-1β. Changes at N-glycosylation motifs were also detected in IL-1, IL-10, IL-12B and IL-15. IL-1α is the protein that presents the highest evolutionary distances, which is in contrast to IL-12A where the distances between lagomorphs are the lowest. For all these ILs, sequences of human and European rabbit are more closely related than between human and mouse or European rabbit and mouse. PMID:26395994

  4. Production of dissolved organic carbon enriched in deoxy sugars representing an additional sink for biological C drawdown in the Amazon River plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meador, Travis B.; Aluwihare, Lihini I.

    2014-10-01

    In North Atlantic waters impacted by discharges from the Amazon and Orinoco Rivers, where planktonic diatom-diazotroph associations (DDA) were active, we observed that an average (± standard deviation) of 61 ± 12% of the biological drawdown of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) was partitioned into the accumulating total organic carbon pool, representing a flux of up to 9 ± 4 Tg C yr-1. This drawdown corresponded with chemical alteration of ultrafiltered dissolved organic matter (UDOM), including increases in stable C isotopic composition (δ13C) and C:N. The dissolved carbohydrate component of UDOM also increased with biological DIC drawdown and diatom-associated diazotroph (i.e., Richelia) abundance. New carbohydrates could be distinguished by distinctively high relative abundances of deoxy sugars (up to 55% of monosaccharides), which may promote aggregate formation and enhance vertical carbon export. The identified production of non-Redfieldian, C-enriched UDOM thus suggests a mechanism to explain enhanced C sequestration associated with DDA N2 fixation, which may be widespread in mesohaline environments.

  5. Freshwater Biological Traits Database (External Review Draft)

    EPA Science Inventory

    This draft report discusses the development of a database of freshwater biological traits. The database combines several existing traits databases into an online format. The database is also augmented with additional traits that are relevant to detecting climate change-related ef...

  6. Deviation from additivity in mixture toxicity: relevance of nonlinear dose-response relationships and cell line differences in genotoxicity assays with combinations of chemical mutagens and gamma-radiation.

    PubMed Central

    Lutz, Werner K; Vamvakas, Spyros; Kopp-Schneider, Annette; Schlatter, Josef; Stopper, Helga

    2002-01-01

    Sublinear dose-response relationships are often seen in toxicity testing, particularly with bioassays for carcinogenicity. This is the result of a superimposition of various effects that modulate and contribute to the process of cancer formation. Examples are saturation of detoxification pathways or DNA repair with increasing dose, or regenerative hyperplasia and indirect DNA damage as a consequence of high-dose cytotoxicity and cell death. The response to a combination treatment can appear to be supra-additive, although it is in fact dose-additive along a sublinear dose-response curve for the single agents. Because environmental exposure of humans is usually in a low-dose range and deviation from linearity is less likely at the low-dose end, combination effects should be tested at the lowest observable effect levels (LOEL) of the components. This principle has been applied to combinations of genotoxic agents in various cellular models. For statistical analysis, all experiments were analyzed for deviation from additivity with an n-factor analysis of variance with an interaction term, n being the number of components tested in combination. Benzo[a]pyrene, benz[a]anthracene, and dibenz[a,c]anthracene were tested at the LOEL, separately and in combination, for the induction of revertants in the Ames test, using Salmonella typhimurium TA100 and rat liver S9 fraction. Combined treatment produced no deviation from additivity. The induction of micronuclei in vitro was investigated with ionizing radiation from a 137Cs source and ethyl methanesulfonate. Mouse lymphoma L5178Y cells revealed a significant 40% supra-additive combination effect in an experiment based on three independent replicates for controls and single and combination treatments. On the other hand, two human lymphoblastoid cell lines (TK6 and WTK1) as well as a pilot study with human primary fibroblasts from fetal lung did not show deviation from additivity. Data derived from one cell line should therefore

  7. On Relevance Weight Estimation and Query Expansion.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robertson, S. E.

    1986-01-01

    A Bayesian argument is used to suggest modifications to the Robertson and Jones relevance weighting formula to accommodate the addition to the query of terms taken from the relevant documents identified during the search. (Author)

  8. [Biological weapons].

    PubMed

    Kerwat, K; Becker, S; Wulf, H; Densow, D

    2010-08-01

    Biological weapons are weapons of mass destruction that use pathogens (bacteria, viruses) or the toxins produced by them to target living organisms or to contaminate non-living substances. In the past, biological warfare has been repeatedly used. Anthrax, plague and smallpox are regarded as the most dangerous biological weapons by various institutions. Nowadays it seems quite unlikely that biological warfare will be employed in any military campaigns. However, the possibility remains that biological weapons may be used in acts of bioterrorism. In addition all diseases caused by biological weapons may also occur naturally or as a result of a laboratory accident. Risk assessment with regard to biological danger often proves to be difficult. In this context, an early identification of a potentially dangerous situation through experts is essential to limit the degree of damage. PMID:20717866

  9. The X-ray Crystal Structure of the Phage Tail Terminator Protein Reveals the Biologically Relevant Hexameric Rang Structure and Demonstrates a Conserved mechanism of Tail Termination among Divrse Long Tailed Phages

    SciTech Connect

    Pell, L.; Liu, A; Edmonds, L; Donaldson, L; Howell, L; Davidson, A

    2009-01-01

    The tail terminator protein (TrP) plays an essential role in phage tail assembly by capping the rapidly polymerizing tail once it has reached its requisite length and serving as the interaction surface for phage heads. Here, we present the 2.7-A crystal structure of a hexameric ring of gpU, the TrP of phage ?. Using sequence alignment analysis and site-directed mutagenesis, we have shown that this multimeric structure is biologically relevant and we have delineated its functional surfaces. Comparison of the hexameric crystal structure with the solution structure of gpU that we previously solved using NMR spectroscopy shows large structural changes occurring upon multimerization and suggests a mechanism that allows gpU to remain monomeric at high concentrations on its own, yet polymerize readily upon contact with an assembled tail tube. The gpU hexamer displays several flexible loops that play key roles in head and tail binding, implying a role for disorder-to-order transitions in controlling assembly as has been observed with other ? morphogenetic proteins. Finally, we have found that the hexameric structure of gpU is very similar to the structure of a putative TrP from a contractile phage tail even though it displays no detectable sequence similarity. This finding coupled with further bioinformatic investigations has led us to conclude that the TrPs of non-contractile-tailed phages, such as ?, are evolutionarily related to those of contractile-tailed phages, such as P2 and Mu, and that all long-tailed phages may utilize a conserved mechanism for tail termination.

  10. Three-year summary report of biological monitoring at the Southwest Ocean dredged-material disposal site and additional locations off Grays Harbor, Washington, 1990--1992

    SciTech Connect

    Antrim, L.D.; Shreffler, D.K.; Pearson, W.H.; Cullinan, V.I. )

    1992-12-01

    The Grays Harbor Navigation Improvement Project was initiated to improve navigation by widening and deepening the federal channel at Grays Harbor. Dredged-material disposal sites were selected after an extensive review process that included inter-agency agreements, biological surveys, other laboratory and field studies, and preparation of environmental impact statements The Southwest Site, was designated to receive materials dredged during annual maintenance dredging as well as the initial construction phase of the project. The Southwest Site was located, and the disposal operations designed, primarily to avoid impacts to Dungeness crab. The Final Environmental Impact Statement Supplement for the project incorporated a Site Monitoring Plan in which a tiered approach to disposal site monitoring was recommended. Under Tier I of the Site Monitoring Plan, Dungeness crab densities are monitored to confirm that large aggregations of newly settled Dungeness crab have not moved onto the Southwest Site. Tier 2 entails an increased sampling effort to determine whether a change in disposal operations is needed. Four epibenthic surveys using beam trawls were conducted in 1990, 1991, and 1992 at the Southwest Site and North Reference area, where high crab concentrations were found in the spring of 1985. Survey results during these three years prompted no Tier 2 activities. Epibenthic surveys were also conducted at two nearshore sites where construction of sediment berms has been proposed. This work is summarized in an appendix to this report.

  11. Effects of chemical, biological, and physical aging as well as soil addition on the sorption of pyrene to activated carbon and biochar.

    PubMed

    Hale, Sarah E; Hanley, Kelly; Lehmann, Johannes; Zimmerman, Andrewr; Cornelissen, Gerard

    2011-12-15

    In this study, the suitability of biochar and activated carbon (AC) for contaminated soil remediation is investigated by determining the sorption of pyrene to both materials in the presence and absence of soil and before as well as after aging. Biochar and AC were aged either alone or mixed with soil via exposure to (a) nutrients and microorganisms (biological), (b) 60 and 110 °C (chemical), and (c) freeze-thaw cycles (physical). Before and after aging, the pH, elemental composition, cation exchange capacity (CEC), microporous SA, and sorption isotherms of pyrene were quantified. Aging at 110 °C altered the physicochemical properties of all materials to the greatest extent (for example, pH increased by up to three units and CEC by up to 50% for biochar). Logarithmic K(Fr) values ranged from 7.80 to 8.21 (ng kg(-1))(ng L(-1))(-nF) for AC and 5.22 to 6.21 (ng kg(-1))(ng L(-1))(-nF) for biochar after the various aging regimes. Grinding biochar to a smaller particle size did not significantly affect the sorption of d(10) pyrene, implying that sorption processes operate on the subparticle scale. Chemical aging decreased the sorption of pyrene to the greatest extent (up to 1.8 log unit for the biochar+soil). The sorption to AC was affected more by the presence of soil than the sorption to biochar was. Our results suggest that AC and biochar have a high sorption capacity for pyrene that is maintained both in the presence of soil and during harsh aging. Both materials could therefore be considered in contaminated land remediation. PMID:22077986

  12. Monitoring Subsurface Microbial Biomass, Community Composition and Physiological Status during Biological Uranium Reduction with Acetate Addition using Lipid Analysis, DNA Arrays and q-PCR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peacock, A. D.; Long, P. E.; N'Guessan, L.; Williams, K. H.; Chandler, D.

    2011-12-01

    Our objectives for this effort were to investigate microbial community dynamics during each of the distinct terminal electron accepting phases that occur during long-term acetate addition for the immobilization of Uranium. Groundwater was collected from four wells (one up gradient and three down gradient) at three different depths and at four different times (pre-acetate injection, peak iron reduction, iron/sulfate reduction transition and during heavy sulfate reduction). Phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA) results from ground water showed that microbial biomass was highest during Iron reduction and then lower during the transition from Iron reduction to Sulfate reduction and lowest during Sulfate reduction. Microbial community composition parameters as measured by PLFA showed distinct differences with terminal electron accepting status. Monounsaturated PLFA that have been shown to correspond with Gram-negative bacteria and Geobacteracea increased markedly with Iron reduction and then decreased with the onset of sulfate reduction. Bacterial physiological stress levels as measured by PLFA fluctuated with terminal electron acceptor status. Low bacterial stress levels coincided with pre-donor addition and Iron reduction but were much higher during Iron to Sulfate transition and during Sulfate reduction. Microarray results showed the expected progression of microbial signatures from Iron to Sulfate -reducers with changes in acetate amendment and in situ field conditions. The microarray response for Geobacter was highly correlated with qPCR for the same target gene (R2 = 0.84). Probes targeting Desulfobacter and Desulfitobacterium were the most reactive during the Iron to Sulfate transition and into Sulfate reduction, with a consistent Desulfotomaculum signature throughout the field experiment and a general decrease in Geobacter signal to noise ratios during the onset of Sulfate reducing conditions. Nitrate reducers represented by Dechloromonas and Dechlorosoma

  13. Seismic Absorption and Modulus Measurements in Porous Rocks in Lab and Field: Physical, Chemical, and Biological Effects of Fluids (Detecting a Biosurfactant Additive in a Field Irrigation Experiment)

    SciTech Connect

    Spetzler, Hartmut

    2006-05-01

    We have been exploring a new technology that is based on using low-frequency seismic attenuation data to monitor changes in fluid saturation conditions in two-fluid phase porous materials. The seismic attenuation mechanism is related to the loss of energy due to the hysteresis of resistance to meniscus movement (changes in surface tension, wettability) when a pore containing two fluids is stressed at very low frequencies (< 10 Hz). This technology has potential applications to monitoring changes in (1) leakage at buried waste sites, (2) contaminant remediation, and (3) flooding during enhanced petroleum recovery. We have concluded a three year field study at the Maricopa Agricultural Center site of the University of Arizona. Three sets of instruments were installed along an East-West line perpendicular to the 50m by 50m inigation site. Each set of instruments consisted of one three component seismometer and one tiltmeter. Microseisms and solid Earth-tides served as strain sources. The former have a power peak at a period of about 6 seconds and the tides have about two cycles per day. Installation of instruments commenced in late summer of 2002. The instruments operated nearly continuously until April 2005. During the fall of 2003 the site was irrigated with water and one year later with water containing 150 ppm of a biosurfactant additive. This biodegradable additive served to mimic a class of contaminants that change the surface tension of the inigation fluid. Tilt data clearly show tidal tilts superimposed on local tilts due to agricultural irrigation and field work. When the observed signals were correlated with site specific theoretical tilt signals we saw no anomalies for the water irrigation in 2003, but large anomalies on two stations for the surfactant irrigation in 2004. Occasional failures of seismometers as well as data acquisition systems contributed to less than continuous coverage. These data are noisier than the tilt data, but do also show possible

  14. Earthdata Search: The Relevance of Relevance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Quinn, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    Through recent usability studies, the issue of relevance became increasingly clear in the Earthdata Search Client. After all, if a user can't find the data they are looking for, nothing else we do matters. This presentation walks through usability testing findings and recent relevance improvements made to the Earthdata Search Client.

  15. Kinetic spectrophotometric H-point standard addition method for the simultaneous determination of diloxanide furoate and metronidazole in binary mixtures and biological fluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Issa, Mahmoud Mohamed; Nejem, R.'afat Mahmoud; Shanab, Alaa Mohamed Abu; Shaat, Nahed Talab

    2013-10-01

    Simple, reliable, and sensitive kinetic spectrophotometric method has been developed for the simultaneous determination of diloxanide furoate and metronidazole using H-point standard addition method (HPSAM). The method is based on the oxidation rate difference of diloxanide and metronidazole by potassium permanganate in basic medium. A green color has been developed and measured at 610 nm. Different experimental parameters were carefully optimized. The limiting logarithmic and the initial-rate methods were adopted for the construction of the calibration curve of each individual reaction with potassium permanganate. Under the optimum conditions, Beer's law was obeyed in the range of 1.0-20.0 and 5.0-25.0 μg ml-1 for diloxanide furoate and metronidazole, respectively. The detection limits were 0.22 μg ml-1 for diloxanide furoate and 0.83 μg ml-1 for metronidazole. Correlation coefficients of the regression equations were greater than 0.9970 in all cases. The precision of the method was satisfactory; the maximum value of relative standard deviation did not exceed 1.06% (n = 5). The accuracy, expressed as recovery was between 99.4% and 101.4% with relative error of 0.12 and 0.14 for diloxanide furoate and metronidazole, respectively. The proposed method was successfully applied for the simultaneous determination of both drugs in pharmaceutical dosage forms and human urine samples and compared with alternative HPLC method.

  16. Implementation and performance evaluation of a database of chemical formulas for the screening of pharmaco/toxicologically relevant compounds in biological samples using electrospray ionization-time-of-flight mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Polettini, Aldo; Gottardo, Rossella; Pascali, Jennifer Paola; Tagliaro, Franco

    2008-04-15

    Electrospray ionization (ESI)-time-of-flight (TOF) MS enables searching a wide number of pharmaco/toxicologically relevant compounds (PTRC) in biosamples. However, the number of identifiable PTRC depends on extension of reference database of chemical formulas/compound names. Previous approaches proposed in-house or commercial databases with limitations either in PTRC number or content (e.g., few metabolites, presence of non-PTRC). In the frame of development of a ESI-TOF PTRC screening procedure, a subset of PubChem Compound as reference database is proposed. Features of this database (approximately 50,500 compounds) are illustrated, and its performance evaluated through analysis by capillary electrophoresis (CE)-ESI-TOF of hair/blood/urine collected from subjects under treatment with known drugs or by comparison with reference standards. The database is rich in parent compounds of pharmaceutical and illicit drugs, pesticides, and poisons and contains many metabolites (including about 6000 phase I metabolites and 180 glucuronides) and related substances (e.g., impurities, esters). The average number of hits with identical chemical formula is 1.82 +/- 2.27 (median = 1, range 1-39). Minor deficiencies, redundancies, and errors have been detected that do not limit the potential of the database in identifying unknown PTRC. The database allows a much broader search for PTRC than other commercial/in-house databases of chemical formulas/compound names previously proposed. However, the probability that a search retrieves different PTRC having identical chemical formula is higher than with smaller databases, and additional information (anamnestic/circumstantial data, concomitant presence of parent drug and metabolite, selective sample preparation, liquid chromatographic retention, and CE migration behavior) must be used in order to focus the search more tightly. PMID:18336013

  17. Food additives

    MedlinePlus

    Food additives are substances that become part of a food product when they are added during the processing or making of that food. "Direct" food additives are often added during processing to: Add nutrients ...

  18. Food additives

    PubMed Central

    Spencer, Michael

    1974-01-01

    Food additives are discussed from the food technology point of view. The reasons for their use are summarized: (1) to protect food from chemical and microbiological attack; (2) to even out seasonal supplies; (3) to improve their eating quality; (4) to improve their nutritional value. The various types of food additives are considered, e.g. colours, flavours, emulsifiers, bread and flour additives, preservatives, and nutritional additives. The paper concludes with consideration of those circumstances in which the use of additives is (a) justified and (b) unjustified. PMID:4467857

  19. [Adjuvants and additives in vaccines--medical relevance].

    PubMed

    Wiedermann-Schmidt, Ursula; Maurer, Wolfgang

    2005-08-01

    Side effects of vaccinations can have different causes. Substances admixed to vaccines may produce allergic or toxic reactions. The significance and importance of causal associations is discussed in this paper. A table is added listing the most important substances in vaccines, such as inactivating substances, preservatives, stabilizers, adjuvants, and residual substances derived from production processes. Among possible allergic reactions, type I reactions, as the most undesirable ones, should be avoided. In this respect, vaccines against yellow fever are the most important ones. With respect to antibiotics, it should be stressed that penicillin and cephalosporins are not contained in any of the vaccines. The significance of side effects caused by ethylmercury as a preservative (thiomersal) is extensively discussed in the literature. Allergy against this substance is common among the population, manifested as type IV reactions following superficial antigen administration. It has been shown that deep intramuscular injection of thiomersal-containing vaccines may be administered even to persons who are allergic to this substance without risk of side effects. Regarding toxic side effects after application of thiomersal, several studies have disproved a causal relation between thiomersal exposure and developmental disorders. Nevertheless, the general recommendation is to use thiomersal-free vaccines, unless no other preparations are available. In these cases risk of morbidity and mortality from the vaccine-preventable diseases outweigh by far any theoretical risk from ethylmercury. PMID:16160800

  20. BIOLOGICAL WARFARE

    PubMed Central

    Beeston, John

    1953-01-01

    The use of biological agents as controlled weapons of war is practical although uncertain. Three types of agents are feasible, including pathogenic organisms and biological pests, toxins, and synthetic hormones regulating plant growth. These agents may be chosen for selective effects varying from prolonged incipient illness to death of plants, man and domestic animals. For specific preventive and control measures required to combat these situations, there must be careful and detailed planning. The nucleus of such a program is available within the existing framework of public health activities. Additional research and expansion of established activities in time of attack are necessary parts of biological warfare defense. PMID:13059641

  1. The Importance of Being Relevant

    PubMed Central

    Jaswal, Snehlata

    2012-01-01

    This review aims at an understanding of the binding process by synthesizing the extant perspectives regarding binding. It begins with a consideration of the biological explanations of binding, viz., conjunctive coding, synchrony, and reentrant mechanisms. Thereafter binding is reviewed as a psychological process guided by top-down signals. The stages and types of binding proposed by various researchers are discussed in this section. The next section introduces Working Memory (WM) as the executive directing the top-down signals. After that it is described how WM works by selecting relevant sensory input, followed by a detailed consideration of the debate regarding objects vs. features with the conclusion that relevance is the key factor determining what is processed. The next section considers other factors affecting the selection of relevant input. Then, we shift focus to describe what happens to irrelevant input – whether it is discarded at the outset or is gradually inhibited, and whether inhibition is a perceptual or post-perceptual process. The concluding section describes the process of binding as currently understood on the basis of the literature included in the review. To summarize, it appears that initially the “object” is conceptualized as an instantaneous bundle of all features. However, only relevant features of stimuli are gradually integrated to form a stable representation of the object. Concomitantly, irrelevant features are removed from the object representations. Empirical evidence suggests that the inhibition of irrelevant features occurs over time and is presumably a process within WM. PMID:22969739

  2. Biologically controlled synthesis and assembly of magnetite nanoparticles† †Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c4fd00240g Click here for additional data file.

    PubMed Central

    Bennet, Mathieu; Bertinetti, Luca; Neely, Robert K.; Schertel, Andreas; Körnig, André; Flors, Cristina; Müller, Frank D.; Schüler, Dirk; Klumpp, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    Magnetite nanoparticles have size- and shape-dependent magnetic properties. In addition, assemblies of magnetite nanoparticles forming one-dimensional nanostructures have magnetic properties distinct from zero-dimensional or non-organized materials due to strong uniaxial shape anisotropy. However, assemblies of free-standing magnetic nanoparticles tend to collapse and form closed-ring structures rather than chains in order to minimize their energy. Magnetotactic bacteria, ubiquitous microorganisms, have the capability to mineralize magnetite nanoparticles, the so-called magnetosomes, and to direct their assembly in stable chains via biological macromolecules. In this contribution, the synthesis and assembly of biological magnetite to obtain functional magnetic dipoles in magnetotactic bacteria are presented, with a focus on the assembly. We present tomographic reconstructions based on cryo-FIB sectioning and SEM imaging of a magnetotactic bacterium to exemplify that the magnetosome chain is indeed a paradigm of a 1D magnetic nanostructure, based on the assembly of several individual particles. We show that the biological forces are a major player in the formation of the magnetosome chain. Finally, we demonstrate by super resolution fluorescence microscopy that MamK, a protein of the actin family necessary to form the chain backbone in the bacteria, forms a bundle of filaments that are not only found in the vicinity of the magnetosome chain but are widespread within the cytoplasm, illustrating the dynamic localization of the protein within the cells. These very simple microorganisms have thus much to teach us with regards to controlling the design of functional 1D magnetic nanoassembly. PMID:25932467

  3. Biological treatment and ozone oxidation: Integration or coupling?

    PubMed

    Di Iaconi, Claudio

    2012-02-01

    Wastewaters generated by many economically relevant industrial activities contain recalcitrant organic compounds which pass unaltered through biological stage of the treatment plant making it difficult to meet the discharge limits currently in force. Therefore, an additional treatment is usually required to remove these compounds. In this study, the application of ozonation together with biological treatment was investigated. In particular, the effectiveness of biological degradation followed by or integrated with ozonation for treating the effluents produced by three environmentally relevant activities (i.e., leather and textile processing and municipal waste landfilling) are compared in the present paper. The results show that biological treatment followed by ozonation does not guarantee depurative levels sufficient for discharge for landfill leachates and tannery wastewater. On the contrary, thanks to the synergy between biological degradation and ozonation, integrated treatment significantly improves the process performance for all the investigated wastewaters, thus allowing the discharge limits to be met. PMID:22206914

  4. Food additives.

    PubMed

    Berglund, F

    1978-01-01

    The use of additives to food fulfils many purposes, as shown by the index issued by the Codex Committee on Food Additives: Acids, bases and salts; Preservatives, Antioxidants and antioxidant synergists; Anticaking agents; Colours; Emulfifiers; Thickening agents; Flour-treatment agents; Extraction solvents; Carrier solvents; Flavours (synthetic); Flavour enhancers; Non-nutritive sweeteners; Processing aids; Enzyme preparations. Many additives occur naturally in foods, but this does not exclude toxicity at higher levels. Some food additives are nutrients, or even essential nutritents, e.g. NaCl. Examples are known of food additives causing toxicity in man even when used according to regulations, e.g. cobalt in beer. In other instances, poisoning has been due to carry-over, e.g. by nitrate in cheese whey - when used for artificial feed for infants. Poisonings also occur as the result of the permitted substance being added at too high levels, by accident or carelessness, e.g. nitrite in fish. Finally, there are examples of hypersensitivity to food additives, e.g. to tartrazine and other food colours. The toxicological evaluation, based on animal feeding studies, may be complicated by impurities, e.g. orthotoluene-sulfonamide in saccharin; by transformation or disappearance of the additive in food processing in storage, e.g. bisulfite in raisins; by reaction products with food constituents, e.g. formation of ethylurethane from diethyl pyrocarbonate; by metabolic transformation products, e.g. formation in the gut of cyclohexylamine from cyclamate. Metabolic end products may differ in experimental animals and in man: guanylic acid and inosinic acid are metabolized to allantoin in the rat but to uric acid in man. The magnitude of the safety margin in man of the Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) is not identical to the "safety factor" used when calculating the ADI. The symptoms of Chinese Restaurant Syndrome, although not hazardous, furthermore illustrate that the whole ADI

  5. Perceptions of document relevance

    PubMed Central

    Bruza, Peter; Chang, Vivien

    2014-01-01

    This article presents a study of how humans perceive and judge the relevance of documents. Humans are adept at making reasonably robust and quick decisions about what information is relevant to them, despite the ever increasing complexity and volume of their surrounding information environment. The literature on document relevance has identified various dimensions of relevance (e.g., topicality, novelty, etc.), however little is understood about how these dimensions may interact. We performed a crowdsourced study of how human subjects judge two relevance dimensions in relation to document snippets retrieved from an internet search engine. The order of the judgment was controlled. For those judgments exhibiting an order effect, a q–test was performed to determine whether the order effects can be explained by a quantum decision model based on incompatible decision perspectives. Some evidence of incompatibility was found which suggests incompatible decision perspectives is appropriate for explaining interacting dimensions of relevance in such instances. PMID:25071622

  6. Mechanistic investigations reveal that dibromobimane extrudes sulfur from biological sulfhydryl sources other than hydrogen sulfide† †Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available: Experimental details, pH stability data for BTE, NMR spectra. See DOI: 10.1039/c4sc01875c Click here for additional data file.

    PubMed Central

    Montoya, Leticia A.; Shen, Xinggui; McDermott, James J.

    2015-01-01

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has emerged as an important biological signaling molecule in the last decade. During the growth of this field, significant controversy has arisen centered on the physiological concentrations of H2S. Recently, a monobromobimane (mBB) method has been developed for the quantification of different biologically-relevant sulfide pools. Based on the prevalence of the mBB method for sulfide quantification, we expand on this method to report the use of dibromobimane (dBB) for sulfide quantification. Reaction of H2S with dBB results in formation of highly-fluorescent bimane thioether (BTE), which is readily quantifiable by HPLC. Additionally, the reaction of sulfide with dBB to form BTE is significantly faster than the reaction of sulfide with mBB to form sulfide dibimane. Using the dBB method, BTE levels as low as 0.6 pM can be detected. Upon use of the dBB method in wild-type and CSE–/– mice, however, dBB reports significantly higher sulfide levels than those measured using mBB. Further investigation revealed that dBB is able to extract sulfur from other sulfhydryl sources including thiols. Based on mechanistic studies, we demonstrate that dBB extracts sulfur from thiols with α- or β-hydrogens, thus leading to higher BTE formation than from sulfide alone. Taken together, the dBB method is a highly sensitive method for H2S but is not compatible for use in studies in which other thiols are present. PMID:25632344

  7. Potlining Additives

    SciTech Connect

    Rudolf Keller

    2004-08-10

    In this project, a concept to improve the performance of aluminum production cells by introducing potlining additives was examined and tested. Boron oxide was added to cathode blocks, and titanium was dissolved in the metal pool; this resulted in the formation of titanium diboride and caused the molten aluminum to wet the carbonaceous cathode surface. Such wetting reportedly leads to operational improvements and extended cell life. In addition, boron oxide suppresses cyanide formation. This final report presents and discusses the results of this project. Substantial economic benefits for the practical implementation of the technology are projected, especially for modern cells with graphitized blocks. For example, with an energy savings of about 5% and an increase in pot life from 1500 to 2500 days, a cost savings of $ 0.023 per pound of aluminum produced is projected for a 200 kA pot.

  8. Phosphazene additives

    SciTech Connect

    Harrup, Mason K; Rollins, Harry W

    2013-11-26

    An additive comprising a phosphazene compound that has at least two reactive functional groups and at least one capping functional group bonded to phosphorus atoms of the phosphazene compound. One of the at least two reactive functional groups is configured to react with cellulose and the other of the at least two reactive functional groups is configured to react with a resin, such as an amine resin of a polycarboxylic acid resin. The at least one capping functional group is selected from the group consisting of a short chain ether group, an alkoxy group, or an aryloxy group. Also disclosed are an additive-resin admixture, a method of treating a wood product, and a wood product.

  9. Rigor, Relevance and Relationships

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McNulty, Raymond J.; Quaglia, Russell J.

    2007-01-01

    Rigor, relevance, and relationships are three elements that provide the hallmark for education today. These three elements are integrally connected; if one is missing in a teacher's teaching practices, he or she is not doing his or her best to prepare students for success in school and in life. To ensure the inclusion of both rigor and relevance,…

  10. Making Science Relevant

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eick, Charles; Deutsch, Bill; Fuller, Jennifer; Scott, Fletcher

    2008-01-01

    Science teachers are always looking for ways to demonstrate the relevance of science to students. By connecting science learning to important societal issues, teachers can motivate students to both enjoy and engage in relevant science (Bennet, Lubben, and Hogarth 2007). To develop that connection, teachers can help students take an active role in…

  11. Culturally Relevant Pedagogy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Irvine, Jacqueline Jordan

    2010-01-01

    Many teachers have only a cursory understanding of culturally relevant pedagogy, and their efforts to bridge the cultural gap often fall short. Culturally relevant pedagogy is a term that describes effective teaching in culturally diverse classrooms. It can be a daunting idea to understand and implement. Yet people tend to appreciate culturally…

  12. Sverdrup's Biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGowan, J.

    2002-12-01

    Sverdrup's contribution to Biological Oceanography were more than merely substantial, they were of fundamental importance. His plan for the training of graduate students at Scripps did not recognize the traditional division of the basic disciplines into separate categories of physics, chemistry, biology and geology. He insisted that Oceanography was a multi-disciplinary subject and that all entering students should study all four subjects. Today this is not very unusual but it was in the early 50s when I took those courses. We biologists carried away from those courses an appreciation of the importance of both spatial and temporal scale. It was of clear relevance to problems of oceanic population and community biology. But there was still more to his biology. He is responsible for a very simple, but very elegant model of the regulation of oceanic primary productivity. The elements of this model are found today in the ten or so highly derivative models. He also published a map predicting global ocean productivity based on the ideas in the model plus some wonderfully intuitive thinking. This map does not differ strongly from those glorious false color ones being published today.

  13. Bioinformatics and School Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dalpech, Roger

    2006-01-01

    The rapidly changing field of bioinformatics is fuelling the need for suitably trained personnel with skills in relevant biological "sub-disciplines" such as proteomics, transcriptomics and metabolomics, etc. But because of the complexity--and sheer weight of data--associated with these new areas of biology, many school teachers feel…

  14. Additives in plastics.

    PubMed Central

    Deanin, R D

    1975-01-01

    The polymers used in plastics are generally harmless. However, they are rarely used in pure form. In almost all commercial plastics, they are "compounded" with monomeric ingredients to improve their processing and end-use performance. In order of total volume used, these monomeric additives may be classified as follows: reinforcing fibers, fillers, and coupling agents; plasticizers; colorants; stabilizers (halogen stabilizers, antioxidants, ultraviolet absorbers, and biological preservatives); processing aids (lubricants, others, and flow controls); flame retardants, peroxides; and antistats. Some information is already available, and much more is needed, on potential toxicity and safe handling of these additives during processing and manufacture of plastics products. PMID:1175566

  15. Relevance, Derogation and Permission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stolpe, Audun

    We show that a recently developed theory of positive permission based on the notion of derogation is hampered by a triviality result that indicates a problem with the underlying full-meet contraction operation. We suggest a solution that presupposes a particular normal form for codes of norms, adapted from the theory of relevance through propositional letter sharing. We then establish a correspondence between contractions on sets of norms in input/output logic (derogations), and AGM-style contractions on sets of formulae, and use it as a bridge to migrate results on propositional relevance from the latter to the former idiom. Changing the concept accordingly we show that positive permission now incorporates a relevance requirement that wards off triviality.

  16. Core Bioactive Components Promoting Blood Circulation in the Traditional Chinese Medicine Compound Xueshuantong Capsule (CXC) Based on the Relevance Analysis between Chemical HPLC Fingerprint and In Vivo Biological Effects

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Hong; Liang, Jie-ping; Li, Pei-bo; Peng, Wei; Peng, Yao-yao; Zhang, Gao-min; Xie, Cheng-shi; Long, Chao-feng; Su, Wei-wei

    2014-01-01

    Compound xueshuantong capsule (CXC) is an oral traditional Chinese herbal formula (CHF) comprised of Panax notoginseng (PN), Radix astragali (RA), Salvia miltiorrhizae (SM), and Radix scrophulariaceae (RS). The present investigation was designed to explore the core bioactive components promoting blood circulation in CXC using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and animal studies. CXC samples were prepared with different proportions of the 4 herbs according to a four-factor, nine-level uniform design. CXC samples were assessed with HPLC, which identified 21 components. For the animal experiments, rats were soaked in ice water during the time interval between two adrenaline hydrochloride injections to reduce blood circulation. We assessed whole-blood viscosity (WBV), erythrocyte aggregation and red corpuscle electrophoresis indices (EAI and RCEI, respectively), plasma viscosity (PV), maximum platelet aggregation rate (MPAR), activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT), and prothrombin time (PT). Based on the hypothesis that CXC sample effects varied with differences in components, we performed grey relational analysis (GRA), principal component analysis (PCA), ridge regression (RR), and radial basis function (RBF) to evaluate the contribution of each identified component. Our results indicate that panaxytriol, ginsenoside Rb1, angoroside C, protocatechualdehyde, ginsenoside Rd, and calycosin-7-O-β-D-glucoside are the core bioactive components, and that they might play different roles in the alleviation of circulation dysfunction. Panaxytriol and ginsenoside Rb1 had close relevance to red blood cell (RBC) aggregation, angoroside C was related to platelet aggregation, protocatechualdehyde was involved in intrinsic clotting activity, ginsenoside Rd affected RBC deformability and plasma proteins, and calycosin-7-O-β-D-glucoside influenced extrinsic clotting activity. This study indicates that angoroside C, calycosin-7-O-β-D-glucoside, panaxytriol, and

  17. Blending Rigor and Relevance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Siri, Diane K.; Zinner, Jane; Lezin, Nicole

    2011-01-01

    A collaborative at several sites across the state of California will offer evidence of how successful linked learning, which connects academics to real-world work, can be. This article presents examples that illustrate the powerful connections and linkages that are generated by combining academic rigor with the relevance of applying learning to…

  18. Is Information Still Relevant?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ma, Lia

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: The term "information" in information science does not share the characteristics of those of a nomenclature: it does not bear a generally accepted definition and it does not serve as the bases and assumptions for research studies. As the data deluge has arrived, is the concept of information still relevant for information…

  19. The Relevance of Literature.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunham, L. L.

    1971-01-01

    The "legacy" of the humanities is discussed in terms of relevance, involvement, and other philosophical considerations. Reasons for studying foreign literature in language classes are developed in the article. Comment is also made on attitudes and ideas culled from the writings of Clifton Fadiman, Jean Paul Sartre, and James Baldwin. (RL)

  20. Reading, Writing and Relevance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoffman, Mary

    This monograph presents classroom activities that were designed to encourage children to read and write in a self-reliant and responsible manner. The activities were chosen for their relevance to the children involved and because the vocabulary involved was interesting, familiar, and worth remembering and using again. The topics are arranged in…

  1. One-pot green synthesis of biologically relevant novel spiro[indolin-2-one-3,4'-pyrano[2,3-c]pyrazoles] and studies on their spectral and X-ray crystallographic behaviors.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Sakshi; Brahmachari, Goutam; Kant, Rajni; Gupta, Vivek K

    2016-06-01

    Syntheses via green route and single-crystal X-ray structural investigations have been carried out for three spiro[indolin-2-one-3,4'-pyrano[2,3-c]pyrazole] derivatives, 6'-amino-2-oxo-3'-propyl-2'H-spiro[indoline-3,4'-pyrano[2,3-c]pyrazole]-5'-carbonitrile dimethyl sulfoxide monosolvate (5a), 6'-amino-5-fluoro-2-oxo-3'-propyl-2'H-spiro[indoline-3,4'-pyrano[2,3-c]pyrazole]-5'-carbonitrile dimethyl sulfoxide monosolvate (5b) and methyl 6'-amino-5-cyano-1-methyl-2-oxo-3'-propyl-2'H-spiro[indoline-3,4'-pyrano[2,3-c]pyrazole]-3'-carboxylate 0.25 hydrate (5c), respectively. Compounds (5a) and (5b) crystallize in the triclinic space group P\\bar 1, whereas compound (5c) crystallizes in the monoclinic space group C2/c. In molecules (5a) and (5b) all the rings are practically flat, while in (5c), the heterocyclic pyran ring adopts a flattened-boat conformation. In (5a) and (5b) the cyanide group is oriented in a (-ap) conformation, while the amino group is oriented in a (+ap) conformation with a pyran ring, but in (5c) both the cyanide and amino groups are oriented in a (-ap) conformation with the pyran ring. In the crystal structure of (5a) and (5b), the molecules are linked by an elaborate system of N-H...O and N-H...N hydrogen bonds to generate a zigzag-like construct. In (5c) molecules are linked by N-H...O hydrogen bonds, thereby generating extended chains. The present communication focuses on the detailed and comparative information about spectral behaviors, single-crystal X-ray crystallographic properties and solid-state supramolecular architectures of these synthesized compounds of potential biological interests. PMID:27240765

  2. [Functionally-relevant conformational dynamics of water-soluble proteins].

    PubMed

    Novikov, G V; Sivozhelezov, V S; Shaĭtan, K V

    2013-01-01

    A study is reported of the functional-relevant dynamics of three typical water-soluble proteins: Calmodulin, Src-tyrosine kinase as well as repressor of Trp operon. Application of the state-of-art methods of structural bioinformatics allowed to identify dynamics seen in the X-ray structures of the investigated proteins associated with their specific biological functions. In addition, Normal Mode analysis technique revealed the most probable directions of the functionally-relevant motions for all that proteins were also predicted. Importantly, overall type of the motions observed on the lowest-frequency modes was very similar to the motions seen from the analysis of the X-ray data of the examined macromolecules. Thereby it was shown that the large-scale as well as local conformational motions of the proteins might be predetermined already at the level of their tertiary structures. In particular, the determining factor might be the specific fold of the alpha-helixes. Thus functionally-relevant in vivo dynamics of the investigated proteins might be evolutionally formed by means of natural selection at the level of the spatial topology. PMID:23705506

  3. Biological Threats

    MedlinePlus

    ... Thunderstorms & Lightning Tornadoes Tsunamis Volcanoes Wildfires Main Content Biological Threats Biological agents are organisms or toxins that ... Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Before a Biological Threat Unlike an explosion, a biological attack may ...

  4. Supplementing High-Density SNP Microarrays for Additional Coverage of Disease-Related Genes: Addiction as a Paradigm

    SciTech Connect

    SacconePhD, Scott F; Chesler, Elissa J; Bierut, Laura J; Kalivas, Peter J; Lerman, Caryn; Saccone, Nancy L; Uhl, George R; Li, Chuan-Yun; Philip, Vivek M; Edenberg, Howard; Sherry, Steven; Feolo, Michael; Moyzis, Robert K; Rutter, Joni L

    2009-01-01

    Commercial SNP microarrays now provide comprehensive and affordable coverage of the human genome. However, some diseases have biologically relevant genomic regions that may require additional coverage. Addiction, for example, is thought to be influenced by complex interactions among many relevant genes and pathways. We have assembled a list of 486 biologically relevant genes nominated by a panel of experts on addiction. We then added 424 genes that showed evidence of association with addiction phenotypes through mouse QTL mappings and gene co-expression analysis. We demonstrate that there are a substantial number of SNPs in these genes that are not well represented by commercial SNP platforms. We address this problem by introducing a publicly available SNP database for addiction. The database is annotated using numeric prioritization scores indicating the extent of biological relevance. The scores incorporate a number of factors such as SNP/gene functional properties (including synonymy and promoter regions), data from mouse systems genetics and measures of human/mouse evolutionary conservation. We then used HapMap genotyping data to determine if a SNP is tagged by a commercial microarray through linkage disequilibrium. This combination of biological prioritization scores and LD tagging annotation will enable addiction researchers to supplement commercial SNP microarrays to ensure comprehensive coverage of biologically relevant regions.

  5. Supplementing High-Density SNP Microarrays for Additional Coverage of Disease-Related Genes: Addiction as a Paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Saccone, Scott F.; Bierut, Laura J.; Chesler, Elissa J.; Kalivas, Peter W.; Lerman, Caryn; Saccone, Nancy L.; Uhl, George R.; Li, Chuan-Yun; Philip, Vivek M.; Edenberg, Howard J.; Sherry, Stephen T.; Feolo, Michael; Moyzis, Robert K.; Rutter, Joni L.

    2009-01-01

    Commercial SNP microarrays now provide comprehensive and affordable coverage of the human genome. However, some diseases have biologically relevant genomic regions that may require additional coverage. Addiction, for example, is thought to be influenced by complex interactions among many relevant genes and pathways. We have assembled a list of 486 biologically relevant genes nominated by a panel of experts on addiction. We then added 424 genes that showed evidence of association with addiction phenotypes through mouse QTL mappings and gene co-expression analysis. We demonstrate that there are a substantial number of SNPs in these genes that are not well represented by commercial SNP platforms. We address this problem by introducing a publicly available SNP database for addiction. The database is annotated using numeric prioritization scores indicating the extent of biological relevance. The scores incorporate a number of factors such as SNP/gene functional properties (including synonymy and promoter regions), data from mouse systems genetics and measures of human/mouse evolutionary conservation. We then used HapMap genotyping data to determine if a SNP is tagged by a commercial microarray through linkage disequilibrium. This combination of biological prioritization scores and LD tagging annotation will enable addiction researchers to supplement commercial SNP microarrays to ensure comprehensive coverage of biologically relevant regions. PMID:19381300

  6. Computational Systems Chemical Biology

    PubMed Central

    Oprea, Tudor I.; May, Elebeoba E.; Leitão, Andrei; Tropsha, Alexander

    2013-01-01

    There is a critical need for improving the level of chemistry awareness in systems biology. The data and information related to modulation of genes and proteins by small molecules continue to accumulate at the same time as simulation tools in systems biology and whole body physiologically-based pharmacokinetics (PBPK) continue to evolve. We called this emerging area at the interface between chemical biology and systems biology systems chemical biology, SCB (Oprea et al., 2007). The overarching goal of computational SCB is to develop tools for integrated chemical-biological data acquisition, filtering and processing, by taking into account relevant information related to interactions between proteins and small molecules, possible metabolic transformations of small molecules, as well as associated information related to genes, networks, small molecules and, where applicable, mutants and variants of those proteins. There is yet an unmet need to develop an integrated in silico pharmacology / systems biology continuum that embeds drug-target-clinical outcome (DTCO) triplets, a capability that is vital to the future of chemical biology, pharmacology and systems biology. Through the development of the SCB approach, scientists will be able to start addressing, in an integrated simulation environment, questions that make the best use of our ever-growing chemical and biological data repositories at the system-wide level. This chapter reviews some of the major research concepts and describes key components that constitute the emerging area of computational systems chemical biology. PMID:20838980

  7. Mass Spectrometry-based Proteomics and Peptidomics for Systems Biology and Biomarker Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Cunningham, Robert; Ma, Di; Li, Lingjun

    2013-01-01

    The scientific community has shown great interest in the field of mass spectrometry-based proteomics and peptidomics for its applications in biology. Proteomics technologies have evolved to produce large datasets of proteins or peptides involved in various biological and disease progression processes producing testable hypothesis for complex biological questions. This review provides an introduction and insight to relevant topics in proteomics and peptidomics including biological material selection, sample preparation, separation techniques, peptide fragmentation, post-translation modifications, quantification, bioinformatics, and biomarker discovery and validation. In addition, current literature and remaining challenges and emerging technologies for proteomics and peptidomics are presented. PMID:24504115

  8. Morally relevant potential.

    PubMed

    Hershenov, David B; Hershenov, Rose J

    2015-03-01

    Fetuses and infants are said to warrant protecting because of their potential. But valuing potential supposedly leads to absurdities like protecting cells that could be technologically altered to develop into persons. This can be avoided by recognising that morally relevant potential is determined by what is presently healthy development (proper functioning) for an organism. The only interests of mindless organisms are in the flourishing that necessarily depends upon their healthy functioning. They can be harmed when those interests are frustrated. We criticise McMahan for claiming that harm is instead a function of the degree of psychological ties to the future. PMID:24570396

  9. Information Theory in Biology after 18 Years

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Horton A.

    1970-01-01

    Reviews applications of information theory to biology, concluding that they have not proved very useful. Suggests modifications and extensions to increase the biological relevance of the theory, and speculates about applications in quantifying cell proliferation, chemical homeostasis and aging. (EB)

  10. Vygotsky's Crisis: Argument, context, relevance.

    PubMed

    Hyman, Ludmila

    2012-06-01

    Vygotsky's The Historical Significance of the Crisis in Psychology (1926-1927) is an important text in the history and philosophy of psychology that has only become available to scholars in 1982 in Russian, and in 1997 in English. The goal of this paper is to introduce Vygotsky's conception of psychology to a wider audience. I argue that Vygotsky's argument about the "crisis" in psychology and its resolution can be fully understood only in the context of his social and political thinking. Vygotsky shared the enthusiasm, widespread among Russian leftist intelligentsia in the 1920s, that Soviet society had launched an unprecedented social experiment: The socialist revolution opened the way for establishing social conditions that would let the individual flourish. For Vygotsky, this meant that "a new man" of the future would become "the first and only species in biology that would create itself." He envisioned psychology as a science that would serve this humanist teleology. I propose that The Crisis is relevant today insofar as it helps us define a fundamental problem: How can we systematically account for the development of knowledge in psychology? I evaluate how Vygotsky addresses this problem as a historian of the crisis. PMID:22520196

  11. Ancient "Observatories" - A Relevant Concept?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belmonte, Juan Antonio

    It is quite common, when reading popular books on astronomy, to see a place referred to as "the oldest observatory in the world". In addition, numerous books on archaeoastronomy, of various levels of quality, frequently refer to the existence of "prehistoric" or "ancient" observatories when describing or citing monuments that were certainly not built with the primary purpose of observing the skies. Internet sources are also guilty of this practice. In this chapter, the different meanings of the word observatory will be analyzed, looking at how their significances can be easily confused or even interchanged. The proclaimed "ancient observatories" are a typical result of this situation. Finally, the relevance of the concept of the ancient observatory will be evaluated.

  12. Relevant Features of Science: Values in Conservation Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Dijk, Esther M.

    2013-01-01

    The development of an understanding of the nature of science is generally assumed to be an important aspect of science communication with respect to the enhancement of scientific literacy. At present, a general characterization of the nature of science is still lacking and probably such a characterization will not be achievable. The overall aim of…

  13. Towards a barrier height benchmark set for biologically relevant systems

    PubMed Central

    Kromann, Jimmy C.; Christensen, Anders S.; Cui, Qiang

    2016-01-01

    We have collected computed barrier heights and reaction energies (and associated model structures) for five enzymes from studies published by Himo and co-workers. Using this data, obtained at the B3LYP/6- 311+G(2d,2p)[LANL2DZ]//B3LYP/6-31G(d,p) level of theory, we then benchmark PM6, PM7, PM7-TS, and DFTB3 and discuss the influence of system size, bulk solvation, and geometry re-optimization on the error. The mean absolute differences (MADs) observed for these five enzyme model systems are similar to those observed for PM6 and PM7 for smaller systems (10–15 kcal/mol), while DFTB results in a MAD that is significantly lower (6 kcal/mol). The MADs for PMx and DFTB3 are each dominated by large errors for a single system and if the system is disregarded the MADs fall to 4–5 kcal/mol. Overall, results for the condensed phase are neither more or less accurate relative to B3LYP than those in the gas phase. With the exception of PM7-TS, the MAD for small and large structural models are very similar, with a maximum deviation of 3 kcal/mol for PM6. Geometry optimization with PM6 shows that for one system this method predicts a different mechanism compared to B3LYP/6-31G(d,p). For the remaining systems, geometry optimization of the large structural model increases the MAD relative to single points, by 2.5 and 1.8 kcal/mol for barriers and reaction energies. For the small structural model, the corresponding MADs decrease by 0.4 and 1.2 kcal/mol, respectively. However, despite these small changes, significant changes in the structures are observed for some systems, such as proton transfer and hydrogen bonding rearrangements. The paper represents the first step in the process of creating a benchmark set of barriers computed for systems that are relatively large and representative of enzymatic reactions, a considerable challenge for any one research group but possible through a concerted effort by the community. We end by outlining steps needed to expand and improve the data set and how other researchers can contribute to the process. PMID:27168993

  14. Towards a barrier height benchmark set for biologically relevant systems.

    PubMed

    Kromann, Jimmy C; Christensen, Anders S; Cui, Qiang; Jensen, Jan H

    2016-01-01

    We have collected computed barrier heights and reaction energies (and associated model structures) for five enzymes from studies published by Himo and co-workers. Using this data, obtained at the B3LYP/6- 311+G(2d,2p)[LANL2DZ]//B3LYP/6-31G(d,p) level of theory, we then benchmark PM6, PM7, PM7-TS, and DFTB3 and discuss the influence of system size, bulk solvation, and geometry re-optimization on the error. The mean absolute differences (MADs) observed for these five enzyme model systems are similar to those observed for PM6 and PM7 for smaller systems (10-15 kcal/mol), while DFTB results in a MAD that is significantly lower (6 kcal/mol). The MADs for PMx and DFTB3 are each dominated by large errors for a single system and if the system is disregarded the MADs fall to 4-5 kcal/mol. Overall, results for the condensed phase are neither more or less accurate relative to B3LYP than those in the gas phase. With the exception of PM7-TS, the MAD for small and large structural models are very similar, with a maximum deviation of 3 kcal/mol for PM6. Geometry optimization with PM6 shows that for one system this method predicts a different mechanism compared to B3LYP/6-31G(d,p). For the remaining systems, geometry optimization of the large structural model increases the MAD relative to single points, by 2.5 and 1.8 kcal/mol for barriers and reaction energies. For the small structural model, the corresponding MADs decrease by 0.4 and 1.2 kcal/mol, respectively. However, despite these small changes, significant changes in the structures are observed for some systems, such as proton transfer and hydrogen bonding rearrangements. The paper represents the first step in the process of creating a benchmark set of barriers computed for systems that are relatively large and representative of enzymatic reactions, a considerable challenge for any one research group but possible through a concerted effort by the community. We end by outlining steps needed to expand and improve the data set and how other researchers can contribute to the process. PMID:27168993

  15. Annexin A2: biology and relevance to the antiphospholipid syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Cockrell, E; Espinola, RG; McCrae, KR

    2012-01-01

    Antiphospholipid antibodies (aPL), the majority of which are directed against β2-glycoprotein I (β2GPI), are associated with an increased incidence of venous and arterial thrombosis. The pathogenesis of antiphospholipid/anti-β2GPI-associated thrombosis has not been defined, and is likely multifactorial. However, accumulating evidence suggests an important role for endothelial cell activation with the acquisition of a procoagulant phenotype by the activated endothelial cell. Previous work demonstrated that endothelial activation by antiphospholipid/anti-β2GPI antibodies is β2GPI-dependent. We extended these observations by defining annexin A2 as an endothelial β2GPI binding site. We also observed that annexin A2 plays a critical role in endothelial cell activation induced by anti-β2GPI antibodies, and others have described direct endothelial activation by anti-annexin A2 antibodies in patients with aPL. Similar findings have been reported using human monocytes, which also express annexin A2. Because annexin A2 is not a transmembrane protein, how binding of β2GPI/anti-β2GPI antibodies, or anti-annexin A2 antibodies, to endothelial annexin A2 causes cellular activation is unknown. Recent studies, however, suggest an important role for the Toll-like receptor family, particularly TLR4. In this article, we review the role of these interactions in the activation of endothelial cells by aPL. The influence of these antibodies on the ability of annexin A2 to enhance t-PA-mediated plasminogen activation is also discussed. PMID:18827060

  16. Physical and Biological Interactions of Intact Watersheds: Are they relevant?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bryant, M.

    2005-05-01

    Intact watersheds are rare or absent throughout most of the northern hemisphere. Southeast Alaska is an exception with many forested watersheds that either have not been or are lightly disturbed by human activity. The Kadashan River, a short (less than 20 km) river in an old growth watershed on Chichagof Island is one example of an intact watershed. Natural processes from the headwaters to the ocean interact to create a salmon rich environment. Steep headwater streams are sources for sediment recruitment, nutrients (organic material and invertebrates), and large wood. Large riparian trees entering the stream provide long term storage of sediment, create pools, and link the main stream to off-channel habitats. A natural discharge regime that floods a complex riparian zone with abundant beaver ponds is a key process that maintains this complex system. Examples of these processes and salmonid populations in the Kadashan River illustrate how they interact to support one of the more productive watersheds in southeast Alaska. Understanding and quantifying processes in intact watersheds provide an opportunity to test major river paradigms and provide reference points for watershed restoration projects elsewhere.

  17. The Importance of Biologically Relevant Microclimates in Habitat Suitability Assessments

    PubMed Central

    Varner, Johanna; Dearing, M. Denise

    2014-01-01

    Predicting habitat suitability under climate change is vital to conserving biodiversity. However, current species distribution models rely on coarse scale climate data, whereas fine scale microclimate data may be necessary to assess habitat suitability and generate predictive models. Here, we evaluate disparities between temperature data at the coarse scale from weather stations versus fine-scale data measured in microhabitats required for a climate-sensitive mammal, the American pika (Ochotona princeps). We collected two years of temperature data in occupied talus habitats predicted to be suitable (high elevation) and unsuitable (low elevation) by the bioclimatic envelope approach. At low elevations, talus surface and interstitial microclimates drastically differed from ambient temperatures measured on-site and at a nearby weather station. Interstitial talus temperatures were frequently decoupled from high ambient temperatures, resulting in instantaneous disparities of over 30°C between these two measurements. Microhabitat temperatures were also highly heterogeneous, such that temperature measurements within the same patch of talus were not more correlated than measurements at distant patches. An experimental manipulation revealed that vegetation cover may cool the talus surface by up to 10°C during the summer, which may contribute to this spatial heterogeneity. Finally, low elevation microclimates were milder and less variable than typical alpine habitat, suggesting that, counter to species distribution model predictions, these seemingly unsuitable habitats may actually be better refugia for this species under climate change. These results highlight the importance of fine-scale microhabitat data in habitat assessments and underscore the notion that some critical refugia may be counterintuitive. PMID:25115894

  18. Synthesis of glycophostones: cyclic phosphonate analogues of biologically relevant sugars

    PubMed

    Hanessian; Rogel

    2000-05-01

    Analogues of L-fucose, N-acetyl-D-glucosamine, N-acetyl-D-mannosamine, and N-acetyl neuraminic acid in which the anomeric carbon atom was replaced by a phosphonyl group (phostones or cyclic phosphonates) were synthesized by stereocontrolled methods relying on the Abramov reaction. PMID:10808439

  19. Biologically Relevant Exposure Science for 21st Century Toxicity Testing

    EPA Science Inventory

    High visibility efforts in toxicity testing and computational toxicology including the recent NRC report, Toxicity Testing in the 21st Century: a Vision and Strategy (NRC, 2007), raise important research questions and opportunities for the field of exposure science. The authors ...

  20. Switching specific biomolecular interactions on surfaces under complex biological conditions† †Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c4an01225a Click here for additional data file.

    PubMed Central

    Lashkor, Minhaj; Rawson, Frankie J.; Preece, Jon A.

    2014-01-01

    Herein, electrically switchable mixed self-assembled monolayers based on oligopeptides have been developed and investigated for their suitability in achieving control over biomolecular interactions in the presence of complex biological conditions. Our model system, a biotinylated oligopeptide tethered to gold within a background of tri(ethylene glycol) undecanethiol, is ubiquitous in both switching specific protein interactions in highly fouling media while still offering the non-specific protein-resistance to the surface. Furthermore, the work demonstrated that the performance of the switching on the electro-switchable oligopeptide is sensitive to the characteristics of the media, and in particular, its protein concentration and buffer composition, and thus such aspects should be considered and addressed to assure maximum switching performance. This study lays the foundation for developing more realistic dynamic extracellular matrix models and is certainly applicable in a wide variety of biological and medical applications. PMID:25180245

  1. Decontamination formulation with sorbent additive

    DOEpatents

    Tucker; Mark D. , Comstock; Robert H.

    2007-10-16

    A decontamination formulation and method of making that neutralizes the adverse health effects of both chemical and biological compounds, especially chemical warfare (CW) and biological warfare (BW) agents, and toxic industrial chemicals. The formulation provides solubilizing compounds that serve to effectively render the chemical and biological compounds, particularly CW and BW compounds, susceptible to attack, and at least one reactive compound that serves to attack (and detoxify or kill) the compound. The formulation includes at least one solubilizing agent, a reactive compound, a bleaching activator, a sorbent additive, and water. The highly adsorbent, water-soluble sorbent additive (e.g., sorbitol or mannitol) is used to "dry out" one or more liquid ingredients, such as the liquid bleaching activator (e.g., propylene glycol diacetate or glycerol diacetate) and convert the activator into a dry, free-flowing powder that has an extended shelf life, and is more convenient to handle and mix in the field.

  2. Trienamine catalyzed asymmetric synthesis and biological investigation of a cytochalasin B-inspired compound collection† †Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c5ob02272j Click here for additional data file.

    PubMed Central

    Sellstedt, Magnus; Schwalfenberg, Melanie; Ziegler, Slava; Antonchick, Andrey P.

    2016-01-01

    Due to their enhanced metabolic needs many cancers need a sufficient supply of glucose, and novel inhibitors of glucose import are in high demand. Cytochalasin B (CB) is a potent natural glucose import inhibitor which also impairs the actin cytoskeleton leading to undesired toxicity. With a view to identifying selective glucose import inhibitors we have developed an enantioselective trienamine catalyzed synthesis of a CB-inspired compound collection. Biological analysis revealed that indeed actin impairment can be distinguished from glucose import inhibition and led to the identification of the first selective glucose import inhibitor based on the basic structural architecture of cytochalasin B. PMID:26606903

  3. Biological Properties of Plant-Derived Alkylresorcinols: Mini-Review.

    PubMed

    Luís, Ângelo; Domingues, Fernanda; Duarte, Ana Paula

    2016-01-01

    Alkylresorcinols are compounds which belong to the family of phenolic lipids, and are usually found in numerous biological species. In the particular case of higher plants, alkylresorcinols have been found in various counterparts with chains of thirteen to twenty-seven carbon atoms containing several saturations. Due to the demonstrated antimicrobial properties of many naturally occurring members of the alkylresorcinols family, it is possible to conclude that these compounds act as defensive agents in plants. Previous studies led to the isolation and identification of 5-alkylresorcinols that cleave DNA. Additionally, in the literature, there are several other biological effects attributed to some resorcinol derivatives, namely, cytotoxic, anticarcinogenic, antiproliferative, antileishmanial and antioxidant properties. This mini-review intends to outline the biological activities of the most relevant alkylresorcinols isolated from plants and to propose future directions for subsequent studies regarding the effective biological effects of this class of compounds. PMID:26864549

  4. Biological Technicians

    MedlinePlus

    ... Biological technicians typically need a bachelor’s degree in biology or a closely related field. It is important ... Biological technicians typically need a bachelor’s degree in biology or a closely related field. It is important ...

  5. Biological membranes

    PubMed Central

    Watson, Helen

    2015-01-01

    Biological membranes allow life as we know it to exist. They form cells and enable separation between the inside and outside of an organism, controlling by means of their selective permeability which substances enter and leave. By allowing gradients of ions to be created across them, membranes also enable living organisms to generate energy. In addition, they control the flow of messages between cells by sending, receiving and processing information in the form of chemical and electrical signals. This essay summarizes the structure and function of membranes and the proteins within them, and describes their role in trafficking and transport, and their involvement in health and disease. Techniques for studying membranes are also discussed. PMID:26504250

  6. The Relevance Voxel Machine (RVoxM): A Bayesian Method for Image-based Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Sabuncu, Mert R.; Leemput, Koen Van

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents the Relevance Voxel Machine (RVoxM), a Bayesian multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA) algorithm that is specifically designed for making predictions based upon image data. In contrast to generic MVPA algorithms that have often been used for this purpose, the method is designed to utilize a small number of spatially clustered sets of voxels that are particularly suited for clinical interpretation. RVoxM automatically tunes all its free parameters during the training phase, and offers the additional advantage of producing probabilistic prediction outcomes. Experiments on age prediction from structural brain MRI indicate that RVoxM yields biologically meaningful models that provide excellent predictive accuracy. PMID:22003689

  7. Ontologies for molecular biology.

    PubMed

    Schulze-Kremer, S

    1998-01-01

    Molecular biology has a communication problem. There are many databases using their own labels and categories for storing data objects and some using identical labels and categories but with a different meaning. A prominent example is the concept "gene" which is used with different semantics by major international genomic databases. Ontologies are one means to provide a semantic repository to systematically order relevant concepts in molecular biology and to bridge the different notions in various databases by explicitly specifying the meaning of and relation between the fundamental concepts in an application domain. Here, the upper level and a database branch of a prospective ontology for molecular biology (OMB) is presented and compared to other ontologies with respect to suitability for molecular biology (http:/(/)igd.rz-berlin.mpg.de/approximately www/oe/mbo.html). PMID:9697223

  8. Vibrations, quanta and biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huelga, S. F.; Plenio, M. B.

    2013-07-01

    Quantum biology is an emerging field of research that concerns itself with the experimental and theoretical exploration of non-trivial quantum phenomena in biological systems. In this tutorial overview we aim to bring out fundamental assumptions and questions in the field, identify basic design principles and develop a key underlying theme - the dynamics of quantum dynamical networks in the presence of an environment and the fruitful interplay that the two may enter. At the hand of three biological phenomena whose understanding is held to require quantum mechanical processes, namely excitation and charge transfer in photosynthetic complexes, magneto-reception in birds and the olfactory sense, we demonstrate that this underlying theme encompasses them all, thus suggesting its wider relevance as an archetypical framework for quantum biology.

  9. The Simbios National Center: Systems Biology in Motion

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Jeanette P.; Delp, Scott L.; Sherman, Michael A.; Taylor, Charles A.; Pande, Vijay S.; Altman, Russ B.

    2010-01-01

    Physics-based simulation is needed to understand the function of biological structures and can be applied across a wide range of scales, from molecules to organisms. Simbios (the National Center for Physics-Based Simulation of Biological Structures, http://www.simbios.stanford.edu/) is one of seven NIH-supported National Centers for Biomedical Computation. This article provides an overview of the mission and achievements of Simbios, and describes its place within systems biology. Understanding the interactions between various parts of a biological system and integrating this information to understand how biological systems function is the goal of systems biology. Many important biological systems comprise complex structural systems whose components interact through the exchange of physical forces, and whose movement and function is dictated by those forces. In particular, systems that are made of multiple identifiable components that move relative to one another in a constrained manner are multibody systems. Simbios’ focus is creating methods for their simulation. Simbios is also investigating the biomechanical forces that govern fluid flow through deformable vessels, a central problem in cardiovascular dynamics. In this application, the system is governed by the interplay of classical forces, but the motion is distributed smoothly through the materials and fluids, requiring the use of continuum methods. In addition to the research aims, Simbios is working to disseminate information, software and other resources relevant to biological systems in motion. PMID:20107615

  10. Bacteriophage lambda: early pioneer and still relevant

    PubMed Central

    Casjens, Sherwood R.; Hendrix, Roger W.

    2015-01-01

    Molecular genetic research on bacteriophage lambda carried out during its golden age from the mid 1950's to mid 1980's was critically important in the attainment of our current understanding of the sophisticated and complex mechanisms by which the expression of genes is controlled, of DNA virus assembly and of the molecular nature of lysogeny. The development of molecular cloning techniques, ironically instigated largely by phage lambda researchers, allowed many phage workers to switch their efforts to other biological systems. Nonetheless, since that time the ongoing study of lambda and its relatives have continued to give important new insights. In this review we give some relevant early history and describe recent developments in understanding the molecular biology of lambda's life cycle. PMID:25742714

  11. Bacteriophage lambda: Early pioneer and still relevant.

    PubMed

    Casjens, Sherwood R; Hendrix, Roger W

    2015-05-01

    Molecular genetic research on bacteriophage lambda carried out during its golden age from the mid-1950s to mid-1980s was critically important in the attainment of our current understanding of the sophisticated and complex mechanisms by which the expression of genes is controlled, of DNA virus assembly and of the molecular nature of lysogeny. The development of molecular cloning techniques, ironically instigated largely by phage lambda researchers, allowed many phage workers to switch their efforts to other biological systems. Nonetheless, since that time the ongoing study of lambda and its relatives has continued to give important new insights. In this review we give some relevant early history and describe recent developments in understanding the molecular biology of lambda's life cycle. PMID:25742714

  12. Chromosomal data relevant for Q values

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, A. A.

    1992-07-01

    It has been known for many years that relationships between absorbed dose and biological effect vary with the type of radiation. In particular, neutrons and alpha particles are more damaging than x or γ radiations. This applies to a range of biological effects such as cell killing, chromosome aberrations, cell mutation, cell transformation as well as life shortening and cancer induction in animals. The application of this knowledge to devise a scheme for specifying the quality factor (Q) in radiological protection has been the subject of much debate. There are no tumour data in humans from which the quality factor may be derived. The problems of using animal and cell transformation data which are probably the next best choice are discussed. The extensive data base on chromosomal aberrations in human lymphocytes is described and discussed in terms of relevance to deducing quality factors. Particular emphasis is placed on data obtained at low doses and low dose rates.

  13. Relevance in the science classroom: A multidimensional analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartwell, Matthew F.

    While perceived relevance is considered a fundamental component of adaptive learning, the experience of relevance and its conceptual definition have not been well described. The mixed-methods research presented in this dissertation aimed to clarify the conceptual meaning of relevance by focusing on its phenomenological experience from the students' perspective. Following a critical literature review, I propose an identity-based model of perceived relevance that includes three components: a contextual target, an identity target, and a connection type, or lens. An empirical investigation of this model that consisted of two general phases was implemented in four 9th grade-biology classrooms. Participants in Phase 1 (N = 118) completed a series of four open-ended writing activities focused on eliciting perceived personal connections to academic content. Exploratory qualitative content analysis of a 25% random sample of the student responses was used to identify the main meaning-units of the proposed model as well as different dimensions of student relevance perceptions. These meaning-units and dimensions provided the basis for the construction of a conceptual mapping sentence capturing students' perceived relevance, which was then applied in a confirmatory analysis to all other student responses. Participants in Phase 2 (N = 139) completed a closed survey designed based on the mapping sentence to assess their perceived relevance of a biology unit. The survey also included scales assessing other domain-level motivational processes. Exploratory factor analysis and non-metric multidimensional scaling indicated a coherent conceptual structure, which included a primary interpretive relevance dimension. Comparison of the conceptual structure across various groups (randomly-split sample, gender, academic level, domain-general motivational profiles) provided support for its ubiquity and insight into variation in the experience of perceived relevance among students of different

  14. Metabolic engineering with systems biology tools to optimize production of prokaryotic secondary metabolites.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyun Uk; Charusanti, Pep; Lee, Sang Yup; Weber, Tilmann

    2016-08-27

    Covering: 2012 to 2016Metabolic engineering using systems biology tools is increasingly applied to overproduce secondary metabolites for their potential industrial production. In this Highlight, recent relevant metabolic engineering studies are analyzed with emphasis on host selection and engineering approaches for the optimal production of various prokaryotic secondary metabolites: native versus heterologous hosts (e.g., Escherichia coli) and rational versus random approaches. This comparative analysis is followed by discussions on systems biology tools deployed in optimizing the production of secondary metabolites. The potential contributions of additional systems biology tools are also discussed in the context of current challenges encountered during optimization of secondary metabolite production. PMID:27072921

  15. Biological and Chemical Security

    SciTech Connect

    Fitch, P J

    2002-12-19

    The LLNL Chemical & Biological National Security Program (CBNP) provides science, technology and integrated systems for chemical and biological security. Our approach is to develop and field advanced strategies that dramatically improve the nation's capabilities to prevent, prepare for, detect, and respond to terrorist use of chemical or biological weapons. Recent events show the importance of civilian defense against terrorism. The 1995 nerve gas attack in Tokyo's subway served to catalyze and focus the early LLNL program on civilian counter terrorism. In the same year, LLNL began CBNP using Laboratory-Directed R&D investments and a focus on biodetection. The Nunn-Lugar-Domenici Defense Against Weapons of Mass Destruction Act, passed in 1996, initiated a number of U.S. nonproliferation and counter-terrorism programs including the DOE (now NNSA) Chemical and Biological Nonproliferation Program (also known as CBNP). In 2002, the Department of Homeland Security was formed. The NNSA CBNP and many of the LLNL CBNP activities are being transferred as the new Department becomes operational. LLNL has a long history in national security including nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction. In biology, LLNL had a key role in starting and implementing the Human Genome Project and, more recently, the Microbial Genome Program. LLNL has over 1,000 scientists and engineers with relevant expertise in biology, chemistry, decontamination, instrumentation, microtechnologies, atmospheric modeling, and field experimentation. Over 150 LLNL scientists and engineers work full time on chemical and biological national security projects.

  16. Biological Filters.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klemetson, S. L.

    1978-01-01

    Presents the 1978 literature review of wastewater treatment. The review is concerned with biological filters, and it covers: (1) trickling filters; (2) rotating biological contractors; and (3) miscellaneous reactors. A list of 14 references is also presented. (HM)

  17. Biological Agents

    MedlinePlus

    ... to Z Index Contact Us FAQs What's New Biological Agents This page requires that javascript be enabled ... and Health Topics A-Z Index What's New Biological agents include bacteria, viruses, fungi, other microorganisms and ...

  18. NOTE: The relevance of very low energy ions for heavy-ion therapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elsässer, T.; Gemmel, A.; Scholz, M.; Schardt, D.; Krämer, M.

    2009-04-01

    Heavy-ion radiotherapy exploits the high biological effectiveness of localized energy deposition delivered by so-called Bragg-peak particles. Recent publications have challenged the established procedures to calculate biological effective dose distributions in treatment planning. They emphasize the importance of very low energy (<500 keV amu-1) ions, either as primary particles or originating from molecular and nuclear fragmentations. We show, however, that slow heavy ions with energies below 500 keV amu-1 only play a negligible role in cancer treatments for several reasons. Their residual range is very small compared to the relevant length scale of treatment planning. Moreover, their relative frequency and also their relative dose distribution are insignificant, since energy loss and range straggling in ion slowing down processes as well as the necessary superposition of Bragg peaks wash out small-scale special effects. Additionally, we show that even a 1000 times larger biological damage of such slow ions would not result in a clinically relevant increase of the photon-equivalent dose. Therefore, neither a more precise physical description of ions in the very distal part of the Bragg peak nor the consideration of radiation damage induced by hyperthermal ions would result in a meaningful improvement of current models for heavy-ion treatment planning.

  19. Relevance of vitamin D in reproduction

    PubMed Central

    Luk, Janelle; Torrealday, Saioa; Neal Perry, Genevieve; Pal, Lubna

    2012-01-01

    The steroid hormone vitamin D is historically recognized for its relevance to bone health and calcium homeostasis. Recent years have witnessed a shift in focus to non-skeletal benefits of vitamin D; in this latter context, an accruing body of literature attests to a relevance of vitamin D to reproductive physiology. This article reviews the existing data about the diverse and previously underappreciated roles for vitamin D in reproductive health. A large body of available literature suggests that vitamin D deficiency may be detrimental to reproductive biology. However, given that our appreciation of vitamin D's role in reproductive physiology is almost entirely shaped by ‘associative’ studies and that data based on prospective interventional trials are limited, these concepts remain predominantly conjectural. Exact mechanisms whereby vitamin D may participate in the regulation of reproductive physiology remain far from clear. This review underscores a need for appropriately designed intervention trials to address the existing knowledge gaps and to delineate the specific roles of vitamin D signaling in reproductive biology. PMID:22824625

  20. Hybrid Lipid as Biological Surfactants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brewster, Robert; Pincus, Phil; Safran, Sam

    2009-03-01

    Systems capable of forming finite-sized, equilibrium domains are of biological interest in the context of membrane rafts where it has been observed that certain cellular functions are mediated by small (nanometric to tens of nanometers) domains with specific lipid composition that differs from the average composition of the membrane. These small domains are composed mainly of lipids with completely saturated hydrocarbon tails that show good orientational order in the membrane. The surrounding phase consists mostly of lipids with at least one unsaturated bond in the hydrocarbon tails which forces a ``kink'' in the chain and inhibits ordering. In vitro, this phase separation can be replicated; however, the finite domains coarsen into macroscopic domains with time. We have extended a model for the interactions of lipids in the membrane, akin to that developed in the group of Schick (Elliott et al., PRL 2006 and Garbes Putzel and Schick, Biophys. J. 2008), which depends entirely on the local ordering of hydrocarbon tails. We generalize this model to an additional species and identify a biologically relevant component, a lipid with one fully saturated hydrocarbon chain and one chain with at least one unsaturated bond, that may serve as a line-active component, capable of reducing the line tension between domains to zero, thus stabilizing finite sized domains in equilibrium.

  1. [Biological markers of alcoholism].

    PubMed

    Marcos Martín, M; Pastor Encinas, I; Laso Guzmán, F J

    2005-09-01

    Diagnosis of alcoholism is very important, given its high prevalence and possibility of influencing the disease course. For this reason, the so-called biological markers of alcoholism are useful. These are analytic parameters that alter in the presence of excessive alcohol consumption. The two most relevant markers are the gamma-glutamyltranspeptidase and carbohydrate deficient transferrin. With this clinical comment, we aim to contribute to the knowledge of these tests and promote its use in the clinical practice. PMID:16194480

  2. A proposed abiotic reaction scheme for hydroxylamine and monochloramine under chloramination relevant drinking water conditions.

    PubMed

    Wahman, David G; Speitel, Gerald E; Machavaram, Madhav V

    2014-09-01

    Drinking water monochloramine (NH2Cl) use may promote ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB). AOB use (i) ammonia monooxygenase for biological ammonia (NH3) oxidation to hydroxylamine (NH2OH) and (ii) hydroxylamine oxidoreductase for NH2OH oxidation to nitrite. NH2Cl and NH2OH may react, providing AOB potential benefits and detriments. The NH2Cl/NH2OH reaction would benefit AOB by removing the disinfectant (NH2Cl) and releasing their growth substrate (NH3), but the NH2Cl/NH2OH reaction would also provide a possible additional inactivation mechanism besides direct NH2Cl reaction with cells. Because biological NH2OH oxidation supplies the electrons required for biological NH3 oxidation, the NH2Cl/NH2OH reaction provides a direct mechanism for NH2Cl to inhibit NH3 oxidation, starving the cell of reductant by preventing biological NH2OH oxidation. To investigate possible NH2Cl/NH2OH reaction implications on AOB, an understanding of the underlying abiotic reaction is first required. The present study conducted a detailed literature review and proposed an abiotic NH2Cl/NH2OH reaction scheme (RS) for chloramination relevant drinking water conditions (μM concentrations, air saturation, and pH 7-9). Next, RS literature based kinetics and end-products were evaluated experimentally between pHs 7.7 and 8.3, representing (i) the pH range for future experiments with AOB and (ii) mid-range pHs typically found in chloraminated drinking water. In addition, a (15)N stable isotope experiment was conducted to verify nitrous oxide and nitrogen gas production and their nitrogen source. Finally, the RS was slightly refined using the experimental data and an AQUASIM implemented kinetic model. A chloraminated drinking water relevant RS is proposed and provides the abiotic reaction foundation for future AOB biotic experiments. PMID:24862953

  3. Biological aerosol background characterization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blatny, Janet; Fountain, Augustus W., III

    2011-05-01

    To provide useful information during military operations, or as part of other security situations, a biological aerosol detector has to respond within seconds or minutes to an attack by virulent biological agents, and with low false alarms. Within this time frame, measuring virulence of a known microorganism is extremely difficult, especially if the microorganism is of unknown antigenic or nucleic acid properties. Measuring "live" characteristics of an organism directly is not generally an option, yet only viable organisms are potentially infectious. Fluorescence based instruments have been designed to optically determine if aerosol particles have viability characteristics. Still, such commercially available biological aerosol detection equipment needs to be improved for their use in military and civil applications. Air has an endogenous population of microorganisms that may interfere with alarm software technologies. To design robust algorithms, a comprehensive knowledge of the airborne biological background content is essential. For this reason, there is a need to study ambient live bacterial populations in as many locations as possible. Doing so will permit collection of data to define diverse biological characteristics that in turn can be used to fine tune alarm algorithms. To avoid false alarms, improving software technologies for biological detectors is a crucial feature requiring considerations of various parameters that can be applied to suppress alarm triggers. This NATO Task Group will aim for developing reference methods for monitoring biological aerosol characteristics to improve alarm algorithms for biological detection. Additionally, they will focus on developing reference standard methodology for monitoring biological aerosol characteristics to reduce false alarm rates.

  4. Highly aligned lipid membrane systems in the physiologically relevant "excess water" condition.

    PubMed Central

    Katsaras, J

    1997-01-01

    The "excess water" condition in biologically relevant systems is met when a membrane mesophase coexists with excess bulk water. Further addition of water to such a system results in no change to any of the system's physical properties (e.g., transition temperature, repeat spacing, and structural mesophases). Moreover, because biological membranes are anisotropic systems, many of their properties are best studied using aligned samples. Although model membrane systems are routinely aligned, they have traditionally been hydrated with water vapor. It is well known that membranes exposed to water vapor at 100% humidity do not imbibe the same quantity of water as a sample in contact with liquid water. As such, membranes that have been hydrated with water vapor have physical properties different from those of membranes dispersed in water. Because of this shortcoming, aligned membranes have not been utilized to their full potential. Here we present a novel and simple method of aligning model membrane systems under conditions of excess water, which will make possible, for the first time, a variety of techniques (e.g., neutron and x-ray diffraction, nuclear magnetic resonance, electron spin resonance, attenuated total reflection infrared spectroscopy, etc.) for studying such systems under physiologically relevant conditions. In addition, when dealing with samples of limited availability, the system allows for the conditions (buffer pH and ionic strength) to be altered without any effect on the sample's alignment. Images FIGURE 1 PMID:9414206

  5. Relevance theory: pragmatics and cognition.

    PubMed

    Wearing, Catherine J

    2015-01-01

    Relevance Theory is a cognitively oriented theory of pragmatics, i.e., a theory of language use. It builds on the seminal work of H.P. Grice(1) to develop a pragmatic theory which is at once philosophically sensitive and empirically plausible (in both psychological and evolutionary terms). This entry reviews the central commitments and chief contributions of Relevance Theory, including its Gricean commitment to the centrality of intention-reading and inference in communication; the cognitively grounded notion of relevance which provides the mechanism for explaining pragmatic interpretation as an intention-driven, inferential process; and several key applications of the theory (lexical pragmatics, metaphor and irony, procedural meaning). Relevance Theory is an important contribution to our understanding of the pragmatics of communication. PMID:26263065

  6. The acquisition of dangerous biological materials :

    SciTech Connect

    Aceto, Donato Gonzalo; Astuto-Gribble, Lisa M.; Gaudioso, Jennifer M.

    2007-11-01

    Numerous terrorist organizations have openly expressed interest in producing and deploying biological weapons. However, a limiting factor for many terrorists has been the acquisition of dangerous biological agents, as evidenced by the very few successful instances of biological weapons use compared to the number of documented hoaxes. Biological agents vary greatly in their ability to cause loss of life and economic damage. Some agents, if released properly, can kill many people and cause an extensive number of secondary infections; other agents will sicken only a small number of people for a short period of time. Consequently, several biological agents can potentially be used to perpetrate a bioterrorism attack but few are likely capable of causing a high consequence event. It is crucial, from a US national security perspective, to more deeply understand the likelihood that terrorist organizations can acquire the range of these agents. Few studies have attempted to comprehensively compile the technical information directly relevant to the acquisition of dangerous bacteria, viruses and toxins. In this report, technical fact sheets were assembled for 46 potentially dangerous biological agents. Much of the information was taken from various research sources which could ultimately and significantly expedite and improve bioterrorism threat assessments. By systematically examining a number of specific agent characteristics included in these fact sheets, it may be possible to detect, target, and implement measures to thwart future terrorist acquisition attempts. In addition, the information in these fact sheets may be used as a tool to help laboratories gain a rudimentary understanding of how attractive a method laboratory theft is relative to other potential acquisition modes.

  7. Ranked retrieval of Computational Biology models

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The study of biological systems demands computational support. If targeting a biological problem, the reuse of existing computational models can save time and effort. Deciding for potentially suitable models, however, becomes more challenging with the increasing number of computational models available, and even more when considering the models' growing complexity. Firstly, among a set of potential model candidates it is difficult to decide for the model that best suits ones needs. Secondly, it is hard to grasp the nature of an unknown model listed in a search result set, and to judge how well it fits for the particular problem one has in mind. Results Here we present an improved search approach for computational models of biological processes. It is based on existing retrieval and ranking methods from Information Retrieval. The approach incorporates annotations suggested by MIRIAM, and additional meta-information. It is now part of the search engine of BioModels Database, a standard repository for computational models. Conclusions The introduced concept and implementation are, to our knowledge, the first application of Information Retrieval techniques on model search in Computational Systems Biology. Using the example of BioModels Database, it was shown that the approach is feasible and extends the current possibilities to search for relevant models. The advantages of our system over existing solutions are that we incorporate a rich set of meta-information, and that we provide the user with a relevance ranking of the models found for a query. Better search capabilities in model databases are expected to have a positive effect on the reuse of existing models. PMID:20701772

  8. Systems Biology

    SciTech Connect

    Wiley, H S.

    2006-06-01

    The biology revolution over the last 50 years has been driven by the ascendancy of molecular biology. This was enthusiastically embraced by most biologists because it took us into increasingly familiar territory. It took mysterious processes, such as the replication of genetic material and assigned them parts that could be readily understood by the human mind. When we think of ''molecular machines'' as being the underlying basis of life, we are using a paradigm derived from everyday experience. However, the price that we paid was a relentless drive towards reductionism and the attendant balkanization of biology. Now along comes ''systems biology'' that promises us a solution to the problem of ''knowing more and more about less and less''. Unlike molecular biology, systems biology appears to be taking us into unfamiliar intellectual territory, such as statistics, mathematics and computer modeling. Not surprisingly, systems biology has met with widespread skepticism and resistance. Why do we need systems biology anyway and how does this new area of research promise to change the face of biology in the next couple of decades?

  9. Teaching biology through statistics: application of statistical methods in genetics and zoology courses.

    PubMed

    Colon-Berlingeri, Migdalisel; Burrowes, Patricia A

    2011-01-01

    Incorporation of mathematics into biology curricula is critical to underscore for undergraduate students the relevance of mathematics to most fields of biology and the usefulness of developing quantitative process skills demanded in modern biology. At our institution, we have made significant changes to better integrate mathematics into the undergraduate biology curriculum. The curricular revision included changes in the suggested course sequence, addition of statistics and precalculus as prerequisites to core science courses, and incorporating interdisciplinary (math-biology) learning activities in genetics and zoology courses. In this article, we describe the activities developed for these two courses and the assessment tools used to measure the learning that took place with respect to biology and statistics. We distinguished the effectiveness of these learning opportunities in helping students improve their understanding of the math and statistical concepts addressed and, more importantly, their ability to apply them to solve a biological problem. We also identified areas that need emphasis in both biology and mathematics courses. In light of our observations, we recommend best practices that biology and mathematics academic departments can implement to train undergraduates for the demands of modern biology. PMID:21885822

  10. Teaching Biology through Statistics: Application of Statistical Methods in Genetics and Zoology Courses

    PubMed Central

    Colon-Berlingeri, Migdalisel; Burrowes, Patricia A.

    2011-01-01

    Incorporation of mathematics into biology curricula is critical to underscore for undergraduate students the relevance of mathematics to most fields of biology and the usefulness of developing quantitative process skills demanded in modern biology. At our institution, we have made significant changes to better integrate mathematics into the undergraduate biology curriculum. The curricular revision included changes in the suggested course sequence, addition of statistics and precalculus as prerequisites to core science courses, and incorporating interdisciplinary (math–biology) learning activities in genetics and zoology courses. In this article, we describe the activities developed for these two courses and the assessment tools used to measure the learning that took place with respect to biology and statistics. We distinguished the effectiveness of these learning opportunities in helping students improve their understanding of the math and statistical concepts addressed and, more importantly, their ability to apply them to solve a biological problem. We also identified areas that need emphasis in both biology and mathematics courses. In light of our observations, we recommend best practices that biology and mathematics academic departments can implement to train undergraduates for the demands of modern biology. PMID:21885822

  11. Manipulating crystallization with molecular additives.

    PubMed

    Shtukenberg, Alexander G; Lee, Stephanie S; Kahr, Bart; Ward, Michael D

    2014-01-01

    Given the importance of organic crystals in a wide range of industrial applications, the chemistry, biology, materials science, and chemical engineering communities have focused considerable attention on developing methods to control crystal structure, size, shape, and orientation. Tailored additives have been used to control crystallization to great effect, presumably by selectively binding to particular crystallographic surfaces and sites. However, substantial knowledge gaps still exist in the fundamental mechanisms that govern the formation and growth of organic crystals in both the absence and presence of additives. In this review, we highlight research discoveries that reveal the role of additives, either introduced by design or present adventitiously, on various stages of formation and growth of organic crystals, including nucleation, dislocation spiral growth mechanisms, growth inhibition, and nonclassical crystal morphologies. The insights from these investigations and others of their kind are likely to guide the development of innovative methods to manipulate crystallization for a wide range of materials and applications. PMID:24579880

  12. Is synthetic biology mechanical biology?

    PubMed

    Holm, Sune

    2015-12-01

    A widespread and influential characterization of synthetic biology emphasizes that synthetic biology is the application of engineering principles to living systems. Furthermore, there is a strong tendency to express the engineering approach to organisms in terms of what seems to be an ontological claim: organisms are machines. In the paper I investigate the ontological and heuristic significance of the machine analogy in synthetic biology. I argue that the use of the machine analogy and the aim of producing rationally designed organisms does not necessarily imply a commitment to mechanical biology. The ideal of applying engineering principles to biology is best understood as expressing recognition of the machine-unlikeness of natural organisms and the limits of human cognition. The paper suggests an interpretation of the identification of organisms with machines in synthetic biology according to which it expresses a strategy for representing, understanding, and constructing living systems that are more machine-like than natural organisms. PMID:26205204

  13. The Concept of Relevance in IR.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Borlund, Pia

    2003-01-01

    Introduces the concept of relevance as viewed and applied in the context of IR (information retrieval) evaluation by presenting an overview of the multidimensionality and dynamic nature of the concept. Topics include classes and types of relevance; relevance criteria; degrees of relevance; levels of relevance; situational relevance; and…

  14. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1978

    1978-01-01

    Presents experiments, demonstrations, activities and ideas relating to various fields of biology to be used in biology courses in secondary schools. Among those experiments presented are demonstrating the early stages of ferns and mosses and simple culture methods for fern prothalli. (HM)

  15. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1983

    1983-01-01

    Describes laboratory procedures, demonstrations, and classroom activities/materials, including chi-square tests on a microcomputer, an integrated biology game, microscope slides of leaf stomata, culturing soil nematodes, technique for watering locust egg-laying tubes, hazards of biological chemicals (such as benzene, benzidene, calchicine,…

  16. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1982

    1982-01-01

    Describes laboratory procedures, demonstrations, and classroom activities/materials, including use of dwarf cichlids (fishes) in secondary school biology, teaching edge effects on stomatal diffusion, computer program on effects of selection on gene frequencies, biological oxidation/reduction reactions, short cuts with Drosophila, computer program…

  17. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1982

    1982-01-01

    Presents procedures, exercises, demonstrations, and information on a variety of biology topics including labeling systems, biological indicators of stream pollution, growth of lichens, reproductive capacity of bulbous buttercups, a straw balance to measure transpiration, interaction of fungi, osmosis, and nitrogen fixation and crop production. (DC)

  18. Mathematical modeling relevant to closed artificial ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    DeAngelis, D.L.

    2003-01-01

    The mathematical modeling of ecosystems has contributed much to the understanding of the dynamics of such systems. Ecosystems can include not only the natural variety, but also artificial systems designed and controlled by humans. These can range from agricultural systems and activated sludge plants, down to mesocosms, microcosms, and aquaria, which may have practical or research applications. Some purposes may require the design of systems that are completely closed, as far as material cycling is concerned. In all cases, mathematical modeling can help not only to understand the dynamics of the system, but also to design methods of control to keep the system operating in desired ranges. This paper reviews mathematical modeling relevant to the simulation and control of closed or semi-closed artificial ecosystems designed for biological production and recycling in applications in space. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd on behalf of COSPAR.

  19. Amyloid Polymorphism: Structural Basis and Neurobiological Relevance

    PubMed Central

    Tycko, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Summary Our understanding of the molecular structures of amyloid fibrils that are associated with neurodegenerative diseases, of mechanisms by which disease-associated peptides and proteins aggregate into fibrils, and of structural properties of aggregation intermediates has advanced considerably in recent years. Detailed molecular structural models for certain fibrils and aggregation intermediates are now available. It is now well established that amyloid fibrils are generally polymorphic at the molecular level, with a given peptide or protein being capable of forming a variety of distinct, self-propagating fibril structures. Recent results from structural studies and from studies involving cell cultures, transgenic animals, and human tissue provide initial evidence that molecular structural variations in amyloid fibrils and related aggregates may correlate with or even produce variations in disease development. This article reviews our current knowledge of the structural and mechanistic aspects of amyloid formation, as well as current evidence for the biological relevance of structural variations. PMID:25950632

  20. Contextualized Instruction: Teaching Relevant Behaviors in Relevant Contexts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reboy, Lisa M.; Semb, George B.

    In contextualized instruction, the critical features of a context are considered important for the acquisition and transfer of a skill. Examples of contextualized instruction programs are Functional Context Education (FCE) and Anchored Instruction (AI). FCE involves the teaching of reading and mathematics skills in contexts that are relevant to…

  1. Exploitation of biological wastes for the production of value-added products under solid-state fermentation conditions.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez Couto, Susana

    2008-07-01

    Biological wastes contain several reusable substances of high value such as soluble sugars and fibre. Direct disposal of such wastes to soil or landfill causes serious environmental problems. Thus, the development of potential value-added processes for these wastes is highly attractive. These biological wastes can be used as support-substrates in solid-state fermentation (SSF) to produce industrially relevant metabolites with great economical advantage. In addition, it is an environmentally friendly method of waste management. This paper reviews the reutilization of biological wastes for the production of value-added products using the SSF technique. PMID:18543242

  2. Biological clocks and the practice of psychiatry

    PubMed Central

    Schulz, Pierre

    2007-01-01

    Endogenous biological clocks enable living species to acquire some independence in relation to time. They improve the efficiency of biological systems, by allowing them to anticipate future constraints on major physyological systems and cell energy metabolism. The temporal organization of a giwen biological function can be impaired in its coordination with astronomical time or with other biological function. There are also external conditions that influence biological clocks. This temporal organization is complex, and it is possible that a series of psychiatric disorders and syndromes involve primary or secondary changes in biological clocks: seasonal and other mood disorders, premenstrual syndromes, social jet lag, free-running rhythms, and several sleep disorders are among them. In this review, we describe the main concepts relevant to chronobiology and explore the relevance of knowledge about biological clocks to the clinical practice of psychiatry PMID:17969862

  3. The Renaissance of Developmental Biology

    PubMed Central

    St Johnston, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Since its heyday in the 1980s and 90s, the field of developmental biology has gone into decline; in part because it has been eclipsed by the rise of genomics and stem cell biology, and in part because it has seemed less pertinent in an era with so much focus on translational impact. In this essay, I argue that recent progress in genome-wide analyses and stem cell research, coupled with technological advances in imaging and genome editing, have created the conditions for the renaissance of a new wave of developmental biology with greater translational relevance. PMID:25946596

  4. Biological post

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, B. Suresh; Kumar, Senthil; Mohan Kumar, N. S.; Karunakaran, J. V.

    2015-01-01

    Anterior tooth fracture as a result of traumatic injuries, is frequently encountered in endodontic practice. Proper reconstruction of extensively damaged teeth can be achieved through the fragment reattachment procedure known as “biological restoration.” This case report refers to the esthetics and functional recovery of extensively damaged maxillary central incisor through the preparation and adhesive cementation of “biological post” in a young patient. Biological post obtained through extracted teeth from another individual–represent a low-cost option and alternative technique for the morphofunctional recovery of extensively damaged anterior teeth. PMID:26538952

  5. Noise in biological circuits

    SciTech Connect

    Simpson, Michael L; Allen, Michael S.; Cox, Chris D.; Dar, Roy D.; Karig, David K; McCollum, James M.; Cooke, John F

    2009-01-01

    Noise biology focuses on the sources, processing, and biological consequences of the inherent stochastic fluctuations in molecular transitions or interactions that control cellular behavior. These fluctuations are especially pronounced in small systems where the magnitudes of the fluctuations approach or exceed the mean value of the molecular population. Noise biology is an essential component of nanomedicine where the communication of information is across a boundary that separates small synthetic and biological systems that are bound by their size to reside in environments of large fluctuations. Here we review the fundamentals of the computational, analytical, and experimental approaches to noise biology. We review results that show that the competition between the benefits of low noise and those of low population has resulted in the evolution of genetic system architectures that produce an uneven distribution of stochasticity across the molecular components of cells and, in some cases, use noise to drive biological function. We review the exact and approximate approaches to gene circuit noise analysis and simulation, and reviewmany of the key experimental results obtained using flow cytometry and time-lapse fluorescent microscopy. In addition, we consider the probative value of noise with a discussion of using measured noise properties to elucidate the structure and function of the underlying gene circuit. We conclude with a discussion of the frontiers of and significant future challenges for noise biology.

  6. Relevance--There and Here

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simon, Herbert A.

    1973-01-01

    Advocates that in the United States, as in China, scientific research receives government financial support essentially for utilitarian ends. Primary interest of the average citizen in research is not in acquiring knowledge but in its relevance to the needs of society. (JR)

  7. Medical Scenarios Relevant to Spaceflight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bacal, Kira; Hurs, Victor; Doerr, Harold

    2004-01-01

    The Medical Operational Support Team (MOST) was tasked by the JSC Space Medicine and Life Sciences Directorate (SLSD) to incorporate medical simulation into 1) medical training for astronaut-crew medical officers (CMO) and medical flight control teams and 2) evaluations of procedures and resources required for medical care aboard the International Space Station (ISS). Development of evidence-based medical scenarios that mimic the physiology observed during spaceflight will be needed for the MOST to complete these two tasks. The MOST used a human patient simulator, the ISS-like resources in the Medical Simulation Laboratory (MSL), and evidence from space operations, military operations and medical literature to develop space relevant medical scenarios. These scenarios include conditions concerning airway management, Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) and mitigating anaphylactic symptoms. The MOST has used these space relevant medical scenarios to develop a preliminary space medical training regimen for NASA flight surgeons, Biomedical Flight Controllers (Biomedical Engineers; BME) and CMO-analogs. This regimen is conducted by the MOST in the MSL. The MOST has the capability to develop evidence-based space-relevant medical scenarios that can help SLSD I) demonstrate the proficiency of medical flight control teams to mitigate space-relevant medical events and 2) validate nextgeneration medical equipment and procedures for space medicine applications.

  8. Curricular Relevance in Teacher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Engbretson, William B.

    Major trends toward increasing curricular relevance in teacher education are discussed. These include concern for the education of teachers of disadvantaged youth and a return to the concept of early direct and laboratory experience programs exemplified in the San Francisco State College-Sausalito Teacher Education Project, STEP (see ED 023 633),…

  9. Culturally and Linguistically Relevant Readalouds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    May, Laura A.; Bingham, Gary E.; Pendergast, Meghan L.

    2014-01-01

    The teacher readaloud is an instructional tool established in its ability to foster children's language and literacy development. Increasing cultural and linguistic diversity and changing standards place pressure on teachers to provide literacy and language instruction relevant to children's everyday lives and learning. This article…

  10. Evolutionary Conservation and Network Structure Characterize Genes of Phenotypic Relevance for Mitosis in Human

    PubMed Central

    del Sol, Antonio

    2012-01-01

    The impact of gene silencing on cellular phenotypes is difficult to establish due to the complexity of interactions in the associated biological processes and pathways. A recent genome-wide RNA knock-down study both identified and phenotypically characterized a set of important genes for the cell cycle in HeLa cells. Here, we combine a molecular interaction network analysis, based on physical and functional protein interactions, in conjunction with evolutionary information, to elucidate the common biological and topological properties of these key genes. Our results show that these genes tend to be conserved with their corresponding protein interactions across several species and are key constituents of the evolutionary conserved molecular interaction network. Moreover, a group of bistable network motifs is found to be conserved within this network, which are likely to influence the network stability and therefore the robustness of cellular functioning. They form a cluster, which displays functional homogeneity and is significantly enriched in genes phenotypically relevant for mitosis. Additional results reveal a relationship between specific cellular processes and the phenotypic outcomes induced by gene silencing. This study introduces new ideas regarding the relationship between genotype and phenotype in the context of the cell cycle. We show that the analysis of molecular interaction networks can result in the identification of genes relevant to cellular processes, which is a promising avenue for future research. PMID:22577488

  11. Biology Notes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1972

    1972-01-01

    Ten ideas that have been tried out by the authors in schools are presented for biology teachers. The areas covered include genetics, dispersal of seeds, habituation in earthworms, respiration, sensory neurons, fats and oils. A reading list is provided. (PS)

  12. Biology Notes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1973

    1973-01-01

    Some helpful ideas are proposed for use by biology teachers. Topics included are Food Webs,'' Key to Identification of Families,'' Viruses,'' Sieve Tube,'' Woodlice,'' Ecology of Oak Leaf Roller Moth,'' and Model Making.'' (PS)

  13. Bottle Biology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    CSTA Journal, 1995

    1995-01-01

    Provides hands-on biology activities using plastic bottles that allow students to become engaged in asking questions, creating experiments, testing hypotheses, and generating answers. Activities explore terrestrial and aquatic systems. (MKR)

  14. Biology Notes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1972

    1972-01-01

    Twelve new experiments in biology are described by teachers for use in classrooms. Broad areas covered include enzyme action, growth regulation, microscopy, respiration, germination, plant succession, leaf structure and blood structure. Explanations are detailed. (PS)

  15. Valerian: No Evidence for Clinically Relevant Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Nieber, Karen; Kraft, Karin

    2014-01-01

    In recent popular publications as well as in widely used information websites directed to cancer patients, valerian is claimed to have a potential of adverse interactions with anticancer drugs. This questions its use as a safe replacement for, for example, benzodiazepines. A review on the interaction potential of preparations from valerian root (Valeriana officinalis L. root) was therefore conducted. A data base search and search in a clinical drug interaction data base were conducted. Thereafter, a systematic assessment of publications was performed. Seven in vitro studies on six CYP 450 isoenzymes, on p-glycoprotein, and on two UGT isoenzymes were identified. However, the methodological assessment of these studies did not support their suitability for the prediction of clinically relevant interactions. In addition, clinical studies on various valerian preparations did not reveal any relevant interaction potential concerning CYP 1A2, 2D6, 2E1, and 3A4. Available animal and human pharmacodynamic studies did not verify any interaction potential. The interaction potential of valerian preparations therefore seems to be low and thereby without clinical relevance. We conclude that there is no specific evidence questioning their safety, also in cancer patients. PMID:25093031

  16. Valerian: no evidence for clinically relevant interactions.

    PubMed

    Kelber, Olaf; Nieber, Karen; Kraft, Karin

    2014-01-01

    In recent popular publications as well as in widely used information websites directed to cancer patients, valerian is claimed to have a potential of adverse interactions with anticancer drugs. This questions its use as a safe replacement for, for example, benzodiazepines. A review on the interaction potential of preparations from valerian root (Valeriana officinalis L. root) was therefore conducted. A data base search and search in a clinical drug interaction data base were conducted. Thereafter, a systematic assessment of publications was performed. Seven in vitro studies on six CYP 450 isoenzymes, on p-glycoprotein, and on two UGT isoenzymes were identified. However, the methodological assessment of these studies did not support their suitability for the prediction of clinically relevant interactions. In addition, clinical studies on various valerian preparations did not reveal any relevant interaction potential concerning CYP 1A2, 2D6, 2E1, and 3A4. Available animal and human pharmacodynamic studies did not verify any interaction potential. The interaction potential of valerian preparations therefore seems to be low and thereby without clinical relevance. We conclude that there is no specific evidence questioning their safety, also in cancer patients. PMID:25093031

  17. Walking: technology and biology.

    PubMed

    Pfeiffer, Friedrich; Inoue, Hirochika

    2007-01-15

    If all the signs are to be believed, then the twenty-first century will technologically be characterized by machine walking and its relevant products, which possess all chances to become real bulk goods in the course of the next decades. With several university institutes and with Honda and Sony from the industrial side, Japan is today and without any doubt the leading nation in research and development of walking machines. The US and Europe follow at some distance. Walking machines will influence all areas of daily and industrial life and, with the fast evolution of artificial intelligence, will become a real partner of human beings. All relevant technologies are highly interdisciplinary, they will push the future technologies of all technical fields. The special issue on this topic gives a selection of walking machine research and development including some aspects from biology. PMID:17148046

  18. Biology of Pseudomonas stutzeri

    PubMed Central

    Lalucat, Jorge; Bennasar, Antoni; Bosch, Rafael; García-Valdés, Elena; Palleroni, Norberto J.

    2006-01-01

    Pseudomonas stutzeri is a nonfluorescent denitrifying bacterium widely distributed in the environment, and it has also been isolated as an opportunistic pathogen from humans. Over the past 15 years, much progress has been made in elucidating the taxonomy of this diverse taxonomical group, demonstrating the clonality of its populations. The species has received much attention because of its particular metabolic properties: it has been proposed as a model organism for denitrification studies; many strains have natural transformation properties, making it relevant for study of the transfer of genes in the environment; several strains are able to fix dinitrogen; and others participate in the degradation of pollutants or interact with toxic metals. This review considers the history of the discovery, nomenclatural changes, and early studies, together with the relevant biological and ecological properties, of P. stutzeri. PMID:16760312

  19. Ecological perspectives on synthetic biology: insights from microbial population biology

    PubMed Central

    Escalante, Ana E.; Rebolleda-Gómez, María; Benítez, Mariana; Travisano, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The metabolic capabilities of microbes are the basis for many major biotechnological advances, exploiting microbial diversity by selection or engineering of single strains. However, there are limits to the advances that can be achieved with single strains, and attention has turned toward the metabolic potential of consortia and the field of synthetic ecology. The main challenge for the synthetic ecology is that consortia are frequently unstable, largely because evolution by constituent members affects their interactions, which are the basis of collective metabolic functionality. Current practices in modeling consortia largely consider interactions as fixed circuits of chemical reactions, which greatly increases their tractability. This simplification comes at the cost of essential biological realism, stripping out the ecological context in which the metabolic actions occur and the potential for evolutionary change. In other words, evolutionary stability is not engineered into the system. This realization highlights the necessity to better identify the key components that influence the stable coexistence of microorganisms. Inclusion of ecological and evolutionary principles, in addition to biophysical variables and stoichiometric modeling of metabolism, is critical for microbial consortia design. This review aims to bring ecological and evolutionary concepts to the discussion on the stability of microbial consortia. In particular, we focus on the combined effect of spatial structure (connectivity of molecules and cells within the system) and ecological interactions (reciprocal and non-reciprocal) on the persistence of microbial consortia. We discuss exemplary cases to illustrate these ideas from published studies in evolutionary biology and biotechnology. We conclude by making clear the relevance of incorporating evolutionary and ecological principles to the design of microbial consortia, as a way of achieving evolutionarily stable and sustainable systems. PMID

  20. Ecological perspectives on synthetic biology: insights from microbial population biology.

    PubMed

    Escalante, Ana E; Rebolleda-Gómez, María; Benítez, Mariana; Travisano, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The metabolic capabilities of microbes are the basis for many major biotechnological advances, exploiting microbial diversity by selection or engineering of single strains. However, there are limits to the advances that can be achieved with single strains, and attention has turned toward the metabolic potential of consortia and the field of synthetic ecology. The main challenge for the synthetic ecology is that consortia are frequently unstable, largely because evolution by constituent members affects their interactions, which are the basis of collective metabolic functionality. Current practices in modeling consortia largely consider interactions as fixed circuits of chemical reactions, which greatly increases their tractability. This simplification comes at the cost of essential biological realism, stripping out the ecological context in which the metabolic actions occur and the potential for evolutionary change. In other words, evolutionary stability is not engineered into the system. This realization highlights the necessity to better identify the key components that influence the stable coexistence of microorganisms. Inclusion of ecological and evolutionary principles, in addition to biophysical variables and stoichiometric modeling of metabolism, is critical for microbial consortia design. This review aims to bring ecological and evolutionary concepts to the discussion on the stability of microbial consortia. In particular, we focus on the combined effect of spatial structure (connectivity of molecules and cells within the system) and ecological interactions (reciprocal and non-reciprocal) on the persistence of microbial consortia. We discuss exemplary cases to illustrate these ideas from published studies in evolutionary biology and biotechnology. We conclude by making clear the relevance of incorporating evolutionary and ecological principles to the design of microbial consortia, as a way of achieving evolutionarily stable and sustainable systems. PMID

  1. Biology of Immunoglobulins

    PubMed Central

    Berlot, Giorgio; Rossini, Perla; Turchet, Federica

    2015-01-01

    Intravenous Immunoglobulins (IvIg) are often administered to critically ill patients more as an act of faith than on the basis of relevant clinical studies. This particularly applies to the treatment of sepsis in adult patients, in whom the current guidelines even recommend against their use, despite that many studies demonstrated either their beneficial effects in different subsets of patients and that some preparations of IvIg are more effective than other. The biology of Ig are reviewed, aiming to a more in-depth understanding of their properties in order to clarify their possible indications in different clinical settings. PMID:25674545

  2. 21 CFR 601.32 - General factors relevant to safety and effectiveness.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) BIOLOGICS LICENSING Diagnostic Radiopharmaceuticals § 601.32 General factors relevant to safety and effectiveness. FDA's determination of the safety and effectiveness of a diagnostic radiopharmaceutical includes consideration of the following: (a) The proposed use of the...

  3. 21 CFR 601.32 - General factors relevant to safety and effectiveness.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) BIOLOGICS LICENSING Diagnostic Radiopharmaceuticals § 601.32 General factors relevant to safety and effectiveness. FDA's determination of the safety and effectiveness of a diagnostic radiopharmaceutical includes consideration of the following: (a) The proposed use of the...

  4. 21 CFR 601.32 - General factors relevant to safety and effectiveness.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... SERVICES (CONTINUED) BIOLOGICS LICENSING Diagnostic Radiopharmaceuticals § 601.32 General factors relevant to safety and effectiveness. FDA's determination of the safety and effectiveness of a diagnostic radiopharmaceutical includes consideration of the following: (a) The proposed use of the...

  5. Activity-relevant similarity values for fingerprints and implications for similarity searching

    PubMed Central

    Jasial, Swarit; Hu, Ye; Vogt, Martin; Bajorath, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    A largely unsolved problem in chemoinformatics is the issue of how calculated compound similarity relates to activity similarity, which is central to many applications. In general, activity relationships are predicted from calculated similarity values. However, there is no solid scientific foundation to bridge between calculated molecular and observed activity similarity. Accordingly, the success rate of identifying new active compounds by similarity searching is limited. Although various attempts have been made to establish relationships between calculated fingerprint similarity values and biological activities, none of these has yielded generally applicable rules for similarity searching. In this study, we have addressed the question of molecular versus activity similarity in a more fundamental way. First, we have evaluated if activity-relevant similarity value ranges could in principle be identified for standard fingerprints and distinguished from similarity resulting from random compound comparisons. Then, we have analyzed if activity-relevant similarity values could be used to guide typical similarity search calculations aiming to identify active compounds in databases. It was found that activity-relevant similarity values can be identified as a characteristic feature of fingerprints. However, it was also shown that such values cannot be reliably used as thresholds for practical similarity search calculations. In addition, the analysis presented herein helped to rationalize differences in fingerprint search performance. PMID:27127620

  6. [Food additives and healthiness].

    PubMed

    Heinonen, Marina

    2014-01-01

    Additives are used for improving food structure or preventing its spoilage, for example. Many substances used as additives are also naturally present in food. The safety of additives is evaluated according to commonly agreed principles. If high concentrations of an additive cause adverse health effects for humans, a limit of acceptable daily intake (ADI) is set for it. An additive is a risk only when ADI is exceeded. The healthiness of food is measured on the basis of nutrient density and scientifically proven effects. PMID:24772784

  7. Polyimide processing additives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pratt, J. R.; St. Clair, T. L.; Burks, H. D.; Stoakley, D. M.

    1987-01-01

    A method has been found for enhancing the melt flow of thermoplastic polyimides during processing. A high molecular weight 422 copoly(amic acid) or copolyimide was fused with approximately 0.05 to 5 pct by weight of a low molecular weight amic acid or imide additive, and this melt was studied by capillary rheometry. Excellent flow and improved composite properties on graphite resulted from the addition of a PMDA-aniline additive to LARC-TPI. Solution viscosity studies imply that amic acid additives temporarily lower molecular weight and, hence, enlarge the processing window. Thus, compositions containing the additive have a lower melt viscosity for a longer time than those unmodified.

  8. The biological functions of miRNAs: lessons from in vivo studies

    PubMed Central

    Vidigal, Joana A.; Ventura, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Despite their clear importance as a class of regulatory molecules, pinpointing the relevance of individual miRNAs has been challenging. Studies querying miRNA functions by overexpressing or silencing specific miRNAs have yielded data that are often at odds with those collected from loss-of-functions models. In addition, knockout studies suggest that many conserved miRNAs are dispensable for animal development or viability. In this review we discuss these observations in the context of our current knowledge of miRNA biology and review the evidence implicating miRNA-mediated gene regulation in the mechanisms that ensure biological robustness. PMID:25484347

  9. The biological functions of miRNAs: lessons from in vivo studies.

    PubMed

    Vidigal, Joana A; Ventura, Andrea

    2015-03-01

    Despite their clear importance as a class of regulatory molecules, pinpointing the relevance of individual miRNAs has been challenging. Studies querying miRNA functions by overexpressing or silencing specific miRNAs have yielded data that are often at odds with those collected from loss-of-functions models. In addition, knockout studies suggest that many conserved miRNAs are dispensable for animal development or viability. In this review, we discuss these observations in the context of our current knowledge of miRNA biology and review the evidence implicating miRNA-mediated gene regulation in the mechanisms that ensure biological robustness. PMID:25484347

  10. Crossing Boundaries in Undergraduate Biology Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vanderklein, Dirk; Munakata, Mika; McManus, Jason

    2016-01-01

    In an effort to make mathematics relevant to biology students, the authors developed two modules that sought to integrate mathematics and ecology instruction to differing degrees. The modules were developed by a team of biology and mathematics educators and were implemented in an ecology course using three different instructional methods for three…

  11. Exemplary Programs in Secondary School Biology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McComas, William F.; Penick, John E.

    1989-01-01

    Summarizes 10 exemplary programs which address topics on individualized biology, a modified team approach, limnology, physical anthropology, the relevance of biology to society, ecology, and health. Provides names and addresses of contact persons for further information. Units cover a broad range of abilities and activities. (RT)

  12. Aquaglyceroporins: implications in adipose biology and obesity.

    PubMed

    Madeira, Ana; Moura, Teresa F; Soveral, Graça

    2015-02-01

    Aquaporins (AQPs) are membrane water/glycerol channels that are involved in many physiological processes. Their primary function is to facilitate the bidirectional transfer of water and small solutes across biological membranes in response to osmotic gradients. Aquaglyceroporins, a subset of the AQP family, are the only mammalian proteins with the ability to permeate glycerol. For a long time, AQP7 has been the only aquaglyceroporin associated with the adipose tissue, which is the major source of circulating glycerol in response to the energy demand. AQP7 dysregulation was positively correlated with obesity onset and adipocyte glycerol permeation through AQP7 was appointed as a novel regulator of adipocyte metabolism and whole-body fat mass. Recently, AQP3, AQP9, AQP10 and AQP11 were additionally identified in human adipocytes and proposed as additional glycerol pathways in these cells. This review contextualizes the importance of aquaglyceroporins in adipose tissue biology and highlights aquaglyceroporins' unique structural features which are relevant for the design of effective therapeutic compounds. We also refer to the latest advances in the identification and characterization of novel aquaporin isoforms in adipose tissue. Finally, considerations on the actual progress of aquaporin research and its implications on obesity therapy are suggested. PMID:25359234

  13. Biological Correlates of Intimate Partner Violence Perpetration

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Lavinia A.; Sullivan, Eric L.; Rosenbaum, Alan; Wyngarden, Nicole; Umhau, John C.; Miller, Mark W.; Taft, Casey T.

    2013-01-01

    An extensive literature documents biological correlates of general aggression, but there has been less focus on biological correlates of intimate partner violence (IPV). The purpose of this review is to summarize the research literature to date that has reported on biological factors in IPV perpetration. We review the existing literature on four domains of biological processes that have been examined with respect to IPV perpetration, including: head injury and neuropsychology; psychophysiology; neurochemistry, metabolism and endocrinology; and genetics. We critique the literature, discuss the clinical relevance of research findings, and provide some recommendations for future biologically-oriented IPV research. PMID:23393423

  14. Tropical Biological Drawings with Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mitchelmore, June A.

    The annotated illustrations of biological specimens useful for illustrating the "tropical" topics dealt with in African secondary school biology courses are designed to serve a two-fold purpose. The diagrams are intended to show the pupil the structures he should be looking for in his laboratory work, with the textual material being an addition to…

  15. Biological Implications of Artificial Illumination.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wurtman, Richard J.

    1968-01-01

    Environmental lighting exerts profound biologic effects on humans and other mammals, in addition to providing the visual stimulus. Light acts on the skin to stimulate the synthesis of Vitamin D. It also acts, through the eyes, to control several glands and many metabolic processes. Light, or its absence, "induces" certain biologic functions. Light…

  16. Relevance of rhodopsin studies for GPCR activation.

    PubMed

    Deupi, Xavier

    2014-05-01

    GPCRs, or the most detailed analysis of cellular GPCR signal transduction networks using a systems biology approach, have been carried out in rhodopsin. Finally, due again to its unique properties among GPCRs, rhodopsin will likely play an important role in the application of X-ray free electron laser crystallography to time-resolved structural biology in membrane proteins. Rhodopsin, thus, still remains relevant as a model system to study the molecular mechanisms of GPCR activation. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Retinal Proteins-You can teach an old dog new tricks. PMID:24041646

  17. Optical recognition of biological agents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumgart, Chris W.; Linder, Kim Dalton; Trujillo, Josh J.

    2008-04-01

    Differentiation between particulate biological agents and non-biological agents is typically performed via a time-consuming "wet chemistry" process or through the use of fluorescent and spectroscopic analysis. However, while these methods can provide definitive recognition of biological agents, many of them have to be performed in a laboratory environment, or are difficult to implement in the field. Optical recognition techniques offer an additional recognition approach that can provide rapid analysis of a material in-situ to identify those materials that may be biological in nature. One possible application is to use these techniques to "screen" suspicious materials and to identify those that are potentially biological in nature. Suspicious materials identified by this screening process can then be analyzed in greater detail using the other, more definitive (but time consuming) analysis techniques. This presentation will describe the results of a feasibility study to determine whether optical pattern recognition techniques can be used to differentiate biological related materials from non-biological materials. As part of this study, feature extraction algorithms were developed utilizing multiple contrast and texture based features to characterize the macroscopic properties of different materials. In addition, several pattern recognition approaches using these features were tested including cluster analysis and neural networks. Test materials included biological agent simulants, biological agent related materials, and non-biological materials (suspicious white powders). Results of a series of feasibility tests will be presented along with a discussion of the potential field applications for these techniques.

  18. Biological Oceanography

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abbott, M. R.

    1984-01-01

    Within the framework of global biogeochemical cycles and ocean productivity, there are two areas that will be of particular interest to biological oceanography in the 1990s. The first is the mapping in space time of the biomass and productivity of phytoplankton in the world ocean. The second area is the coupling of biological and physical processes as it affects the distribution and growth rate of phytoplankton biomass. Certainly other areas will be of interest to biological oceanographers, but these two areas are amenable to observations from satellites. Temporal and spatial variability is a regular feature of marine ecosystems. The temporal and spatial variability of phytoplankton biomass and productivity which is ubiquitous at all time and space scales in the ocean must be characterized. Remote sensing from satellites addresses these problems with global observations of mesocale (2 to 20 days, 10 to 200 km) features over a long period of time.

  19. Biological preconcentrator

    DOEpatents

    Manginell, Ronald P.; Bunker, Bruce C.; Huber, Dale L.

    2008-09-09

    A biological preconcentrator comprises a stimulus-responsive active film on a stimulus-producing microfabricated platform. The active film can comprise a thermally switchable polymer film that can be used to selectively absorb and desorb proteins from a protein mixture. The biological microfabricated platform can comprise a thin membrane suspended on a substrate with an integral resistive heater and/or thermoelectric cooler for thermal switching of the active polymer film disposed on the membrane. The active polymer film can comprise hydrogel-like polymers, such as poly(ethylene oxide) or poly(n-isopropylacrylamide), that are tethered to the membrane. The biological preconcentrator can be fabricated with semiconductor materials and technologies.

  20. Biological rhythms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halberg, F.

    1975-01-01

    An overview is given of basic features of biological rhythms. The classification of periodic behavior of physical and psychological characteristics as circadian, circannual, diurnal, and ultradian is discussed, and the notion of relativistic time as it applies in biology is examined. Special attention is given to circadian rhythms which are dependent on the adrenocortical cycle. The need for adequate understanding of circadian variations in the basic physiological indicators of an individual (heart rate, body temperature, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, etc.) to ensure the effectiveness of prophylactic and therapeutic measures is stressed.

  1. Testing for Additivity at Select Mixture Groups of Interest Based on Statistical Equivalence Testing Methods

    SciTech Connect

    Stork, LeAnna M.; Gennings, Chris; Carchman, Richard; Carter, Jr., Walter H.; Pounds, Joel G.; Mumtaz, Moiz

    2006-12-01

    Several assumptions, defined and undefined, are used in the toxicity assessment of chemical mixtures. In scientific practice mixture components in the low-dose region, particularly subthreshold doses, are often assumed to behave additively (i.e., zero interaction) based on heuristic arguments. This assumption has important implications in the practice of risk assessment, but has not been experimentally tested. We have developed methodology to test for additivity in the sense of Berenbaum (Advances in Cancer Research, 1981), based on the statistical equivalence testing literature where the null hypothesis of interaction is rejected for the alternative hypothesis of additivity when data support the claim. The implication of this approach is that conclusions of additivity are made with a false positive rate controlled by the experimenter. The claim of additivity is based on prespecified additivity margins, which are chosen using expert biological judgment such that small deviations from additivity, which are not considered to be biologically important, are not statistically significant. This approach is in contrast to the usual hypothesis-testing framework that assumes additivity in the null hypothesis and rejects when there is significant evidence of interaction. In this scenario, failure to reject may be due to lack of statistical power making the claim of additivity problematic. The proposed method is illustrated in a mixture of five organophosphorus pesticides that were experimentally evaluated alone and at relevant mixing ratios. Motor activity was assessed in adult male rats following acute exposure. Four low-dose mixture groups were evaluated. Evidence of additivity is found in three of the four low-dose mixture groups.The proposed method tests for additivity of the whole mixture and does not take into account subset interactions (e.g., synergistic, antagonistic) that may have occurred and cancelled each other out.

  2. Thomas Jefferson and American Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coonen, Lester P.; Porter, Charlotte M.

    1976-01-01

    Presented are the numerous contributions made by Thomas Jefferson to the fields of biological sciences. In addition to his actual contributions and discoveries, his extensive verbal and literacy support of the sciences is traced. (SL)

  3. Additive usage levels.

    PubMed

    Langlais, R

    1996-01-01

    With the adoption of the European Parliament and Council Directives on sweeteners, colours and miscellaneous additives the Commission is now embarking on the project of coordinating the activities of the European Union Member States in the collection of the data that are to make up the report on food additive intake requested by the European Parliament. This presentation looks at the inventory of available sources on additive use levels and concludes that for the time being national legislation is still the best source of information considering that the directives have yet to be transposed into national legislation. Furthermore, this presentation covers the correlation of the food categories as found in the additives directives with those used by national consumption surveys and finds that in a number of instances this correlation still leaves a lot to be desired. The intake of additives via food ingestion and the intake of substances which are chemically identical to additives but which occur naturally in fruits and vegetables is found in a number of cases to be higher than the intake of additives added during the manufacture of foodstuffs. While the difficulties are recognized in contributing to the compilation of food additive intake data, industry as a whole, i.e. the food manufacturing and food additive manufacturing industries, are confident that in a concerted effort, use data on food additives by industry can be made available. Lastly, the paper points out that with the transportation of the additives directives into national legislation and the time by which the food industry will be able to make use of the new food legislative environment several years will still go by; food additives use data by the food industry will thus have to be reviewed at the beginning of the next century. PMID:8792135

  4. An additional middle cuneiform?

    PubMed Central

    Brookes-Fazakerley, S.D.; Jackson, G.E.; Platt, S.R.

    2015-01-01

    Additional cuneiform bones of the foot have been described in reference to the medial bipartite cuneiform or as small accessory ossicles. An additional middle cuneiform has not been previously documented. We present the case of a patient with an additional ossicle that has the appearance and location of an additional middle cuneiform. Recognizing such an anatomical anomaly is essential for ruling out second metatarsal base or middle cuneiform fractures and for the preoperative planning of arthrodesis or open reduction and internal fixation procedures in this anatomical location. PMID:26224890

  5. Literature classification for semi-automated updating of biological knowledgebases

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background As the output of biological assays increase in resolution and volume, the body of specialized biological data, such as functional annotations of gene and protein sequences, enables extraction of higher-level knowledge needed for practical application in bioinformatics. Whereas common types of biological data, such as sequence data, are extensively stored in biological databases, functional annotations, such as immunological epitopes, are found primarily in semi-structured formats or free text embedded in primary scientific literature. Results We defined and applied a machine learning approach for literature classification to support updating of TANTIGEN, a knowledgebase of tumor T-cell antigens. Abstracts from PubMed were downloaded and classified as either "relevant" or "irrelevant" for database update. Training and five-fold cross-validation of a k-NN classifier on 310 abstracts yielded classification accuracy of 0.95, thus showing significant value in support of data extraction from the literature. Conclusion We here propose a conceptual framework for semi-automated extraction of epitope data embedded in scientific literature using principles from text mining and machine learning. The addition of such data will aid in the transition of biological databases to knowledgebases. PMID:24564403

  6. Literature relevant to remote sensing of water quality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Middleton, E. M.; Marcell, R. F.

    1983-01-01

    References relevant to remote sensing of water quality were compiled, organized, and cross-referenced. The following general categories were included: (1) optical properties and measurement of water characteristics; (2) interpretation of water characteristics by remote sensing, including color, transparency, suspended or dissolved inorganic matter, biological materials, and temperature; (3) application of remote sensing for water quality monitoring; (4) application of remote sensing according to water body type; and (5) manipulation, processing and interpretation of remote sensing digital water data.

  7. Relevance of nutrient media composition for hydrogen production in Chlamydomonas.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Ballester, David; Jurado-Oller, Jose Luis; Fernandez, Emilio

    2015-09-01

    Microalgae are capable of biological H2 photoproduction from water, solar energy, and a variety of organic substrates. Acclimation responses to different nutrient regimes finely control photosynthetic activity and can influence H2 production. Hence, nutrient stresses are an interesting scenario to study H2 production in photosynthetic organisms. In this review, we mainly focus on the H2-production mechanisms in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and the physiological relevance of the nutrient media composition when producing H2. PMID:25952745

  8. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1980

    1980-01-01

    Describes equipment, activities, and experiments useful in biology and environmental education instruction, including, among others, sampling in ecology using an overhead projector, the slide finder as an aid to microscopy, teaching kidney function, and teaching wildlife conservation-sand dune systems. (SK)

  9. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1984

    1984-01-01

    Presents information on the teaching of nutrition (including new information relating to many current O-level syllabi) and part 16 of a reading list for A- and S-level biology. Also includes a note on using earthworms as a source of material for teaching meiosis. (JN)

  10. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1981

    1981-01-01

    Presents content information and/or laboratory procedures and experiments on different biology topics including small-scale cultivation of watercress and its use in water-culture experiments, microbiology of the phylloplane, use of mouthbrooders in science class, and the gene. (DC)

  11. Scaffolded biology.

    PubMed

    Minelli, Alessandro

    2016-09-01

    Descriptions and interpretations of the natural world are dominated by dichotomies such as organism vs. environment, nature vs. nurture, genetic vs. epigenetic, but in the last couple of decades strong dissatisfaction with those partitions has been repeatedly voiced and a number of alternative perspectives have been suggested, from perspectives such as Dawkins' extended phenotype, Turner's extended organism, Oyama's Developmental Systems Theory and Odling-Smee's niche construction theory. Last in time is the description of biological phenomena in terms of hybrids between an organism (scaffolded system) and a living or non-living scaffold, forming unit systems to study processes such as reproduction and development. As scaffold, eventually, we can define any resource used by the biological system, especially in development and reproduction, without incorporating it as happens in the case of resources fueling metabolism. Addressing biological systems as functionally scaffolded systems may help pointing to functional relationships that can impart temporal marking to the developmental process and thus explain its irreversibility; revisiting the boundary between development and metabolism and also regeneration phenomena, by suggesting a conceptual framework within which to investigate phenomena of regular hypermorphic regeneration such as characteristic of deer antlers; fixing a periodization of development in terms of the times at which a scaffolding relationship begins or is terminated; and promoting plant galls to legitimate study objects of developmental biology. PMID:27287514

  12. Cancer Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dominiecki, Mary E.

    2004-01-01

    University of Colorado's Virtual Student Fellowship available at and developed by Bakemeier, Richard F. This website is designed to give students applying for a fellowship an overview of basic topics in biology and how they are used by cancer researchers to develop new treatments.

  13. Biology Notes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1976

    1976-01-01

    Describes nine biology experiments, including osmosis, genetics; oxygen content of blood, enzymes in bean seedlings, preparation of bird skins, vascularization in bean seedlings, a game called "sequences" (applied to review situations), crossword puzzle for human respiration, and physiology of the woodlouse. (CS)

  14. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1979

    1979-01-01

    Organized by topic is a reading list for A- and S-level biology. Described are experiments for measuring rate of water uptake in a shoot; questions to aid students in designing experiments; rise of overhead projection to demonstrate osmosis and blood cell counting; and microbial manufacture of vinegar. (CS)

  15. Marine Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dewees, Christopher M.; Hooper, Jon K.

    1976-01-01

    A variety of informational material for a course in marine biology or oceanology at the secondary level is presented. Among the topics discussed are: food webs and pyramids, planktonic blooms, marine life, plankton nets, food chains, phytoplankton, zooplankton, larval plankton and filter feeders. (BT)

  16. (Biological dosimetry)

    SciTech Connect

    Preston, R.J.

    1990-12-17

    The traveler attended the 1st International Conference on Biological Dosimetry in Madrid, Spain. This conference was organized to provide information to a general audience of biologists, physicists, radiotherapists, industrial hygiene personnel and individuals from related fields on the current ability of cytogenetic analysis to provide estimates of radiation dose in cases of occupational or environmental exposure. There is a growing interest in Spain in biological dosimetry because of the increased use of radiation sources for medical and occupational uses, and with this the anticipated and actual increase in numbers of overexposure. The traveler delivered the introductory lecture on Biological Dosimetry: Mechanistic Concepts'' that was intended to provide a framework by which the more applied lectures could be interpreted in a mechanistic way. A second component of the trip was to provide advice with regard to several recent cases of overexposure that had been or were being assessed by the Radiopathology and Radiotherapy Department of the Hospital General Gregorio Maranon'' in Madrid. The traveler had provided information on several of these, and had analyzed cells from some exposed or purportedly exposed individuals. The members of the biological dosimetry group were referred to individuals at REACTS at Oak Ridge Associated Universities for advice on follow-up treatment.

  17. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1981

    1981-01-01

    Outlines a variety of laboratory procedures, techniques, and materials including construction of a survey frame for field biology, a simple tidal system, isolation and applications of plant protoplasts, tropisms, teaching lung structure, and a key to statistical methods for biologists. (DS)

  18. Bottle Biology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jager, Peter

    1993-01-01

    Describes activities which utilize plastic drink bottles and are designed to foster the development of a wide range of biological and ecological concepts. Includes instructions for making a model compost column and presents a model that illustrates open versus closed ecosystems. (DDR)

  19. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1983

    1983-01-01

    Describes laboratory procedures, demonstrations, and classroom activities/materials, including water relation exercise on auxin-treated artichoke tuber tissue; aerobic respiration in yeast; an improved potometer; use of mobiles in biological classification, and experiments on powdery mildews and banana polyphenol oxidase. Includes reading lists…

  20. Microdosing: Concept, Application and Relevance

    PubMed Central

    Tewari, Tushar; Mukherjee, Shoibal

    2010-01-01

    The use of microdose pharmacokinetic studies as an essential tool in drug development is still to catch on. While this approach promises potential cost savings and a quantum leap in efficiencies of the drug development process, major hurdles still need to be overcome before the technique becomes commonplace and part of routine practice. Clear regulations in Europe and the USA have had an enabling effect. The lack of enabling provisions for microdosing studies in Indian regulation, despite low risk and manifest relevance for the local drug development industry, is inconsistent with the country's aspirations to be among the leaders in pharmaceutical research. PMID:21829784

  1. The Asian Eyelid: Relevant Anatomy

    PubMed Central

    Kiranantawat, Kidakorn; Suhk, Jeong Hoon; Nguyen, Anh H.

    2015-01-01

    The eyelid of Asians has its own unique characteristics. If the surgeon does not acknowledge this, aesthetically pleasing results will seldom be achieved. Here the authors review and summarize important up-to-date anatomical and relevant clinical studies of the Asian upper eyelid, aiming to help surgeons thoroughly understand its unique features, including Asian eyelid morphology, anatomical details, and the mechanisms of upper eyelid crease formation. Hopefully, an in-depth understanding of the Asian eyelid will aid surgeons to accomplish their work and lead to novel new techniques in this field. PMID:26306082

  2. The self-relevance system?

    PubMed

    Conway, Martin A; Pothos, Emmanuel M; Turk, David J

    2016-01-01

    We suggest that the Self Attention Network (SAN) maybe part of a larger self-regulatory system, which we term the Self-Relevance System (SRS) of which the "core" or default network is a major part. It is within the core network that memories are generated and the future imagined. Such memories and imaginings are the basis of preoccupations. Within the SRS then preoccupations drive the emergence of attentional biases (ABs). ABs in turn are modulated by the SAN activating and inhibiting circuits that shape behavior. We consider briefly how this might function in dysfunctional appetitive behaviors, e.g., substance abuse. PMID:26305290

  3. Carbamate deposit control additives

    SciTech Connect

    Honnen, L.R.; Lewis, R.A.

    1980-11-25

    Deposit control additives for internal combustion engines are provided which maintain cleanliness of intake systems without contributing to combustion chamber deposits. The additives are poly(oxyalkylene) carbamates comprising a hydrocarbyloxyterminated poly(Oxyalkylene) chain of 2-5 carbon oxyalkylene units bonded through an oxycarbonyl group to a nitrogen atom of ethylenediamine.

  4. Biological trade and markets

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Cooperation between organisms can often be understood, like trade between merchants, as a mutually beneficial exchange of services, resources or other ‘commodities’. Mutual benefits alone, however, are not sufficient to explain the evolution of trade-based cooperation. First, organisms may reject a particular trade if another partner offers a better deal. Second, while human trade often entails binding contracts, non-human trade requires unwritten ‘terms of contract’ that ‘self-stabilize’ trade and prevent cheating even if all traders strive to maximize fitness. Whenever trading partners can be chosen, market-like situations arise in nature that biologists studying cooperation need to account for. The mere possibility of exerting partner choice stabilizes many forms of otherwise cheatable trade, induces competition, facilitates the evolution of specialization and often leads to intricate forms of cooperation. We discuss selected examples to illustrate these general points and review basic conceptual approaches that are important in the theory of biological trade and markets. Comparing these approaches with theory in economics, it turns out that conventional models—often called ‘Walrasian’ markets—are of limited relevance to biology. In contrast, early approaches to trade and markets, as found in the works of Ricardo and Cournot, contain elements of thought that have inspired useful models in biology. For example, the concept of comparative advantage has biological applications in trade, signalling and ecological competition. We also see convergence between post-Walrasian economics and biological markets. For example, both economists and biologists are studying ‘principal–agent’ problems with principals offering jobs to agents without being sure that the agents will do a proper job. Finally, we show that mating markets have many peculiarities not shared with conventional economic markets. Ideas from economics are useful for biologists

  5. Biological trade and markets.

    PubMed

    Hammerstein, Peter; Noë, Ronald

    2016-02-01

    Cooperation between organisms can often be understood, like trade between merchants, as a mutually beneficial exchange of services, resources or other 'commodities'. Mutual benefits alone, however, are not sufficient to explain the evolution of trade-based cooperation. First, organisms may reject a particular trade if another partner offers a better deal. Second, while human trade often entails binding contracts, non-human trade requires unwritten 'terms of contract' that 'self-stabilize' trade and prevent cheating even if all traders strive to maximize fitness. Whenever trading partners can be chosen, market-like situations arise in nature that biologists studying cooperation need to account for. The mere possibility of exerting partner choice stabilizes many forms of otherwise cheatable trade, induces competition, facilitates the evolution of specialization and often leads to intricate forms of cooperation. We discuss selected examples to illustrate these general points and review basic conceptual approaches that are important in the theory of biological trade and markets. Comparing these approaches with theory in economics, it turns out that conventional models-often called 'Walrasian' markets-are of limited relevance to biology. In contrast, early approaches to trade and markets, as found in the works of Ricardo and Cournot, contain elements of thought that have inspired useful models in biology. For example, the concept of comparative advantage has biological applications in trade, signalling and ecological competition. We also see convergence between post-Walrasian economics and biological markets. For example, both economists and biologists are studying 'principal-agent' problems with principals offering jobs to agents without being sure that the agents will do a proper job. Finally, we show that mating markets have many peculiarities not shared with conventional economic markets. Ideas from economics are useful for biologists studying cooperation but need

  6. Interactive Effects of Working Memory Self-Regulatory Ability and Relevance Instructions on Text Processing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hamilton, Nancy Jo

    2012-01-01

    Reading is a process that requires the enactment of many cognitive processes. Each of these processes uses a certain amount of working memory resources, which are severely constrained by biology. More efficiency in the function of working memory may mediate the biological limits of same. Reading relevancy instructions may be one such method to…

  7. The Constraints of Relevance on Prevocational Curriculum

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Doherty, Catherine

    2015-01-01

    This paper reflects on how relevance has been invoked as a curricular principle, both by students and teachers, in curriculum documents and in curriculum theory, to explore its variously conceived parameters and conditions. By posing the questions "relevant to whom?", "relevant to what?", "relevant how?" and…

  8. The Need for Culturally Relevant Dance Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCarthy-Brown, Nyama

    2009-01-01

    There is a need for culturally relevant teaching in dance education. Many dance teachers have heard the buzz words "culturally relevant teaching methods." Yet these dance educators acknowledge that the "dance culture" is not always synonymous with "culturally relevant." This paper examines the issue of culturally relevant teaching methods in dance…

  9. Preservice Biology Teachers' Professional Knowledge: Structure and Learning Opportunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Großschedl, Jörg; Harms, Ute; Kleickmann, Thilo; Glowinski, Ingrid

    2015-04-01

    What learning opportunities in higher education promote the development of content knowledge (CK), pedagogical content knowledge (PCK), and pedagogical knowledge (PK)? In order to investigate this question, a cross-sectional study with a total of 274 German preservice biology teachers (21.5 % male, average age 22.8 years) was conducted in German universities. Preservice teachers were recruited via announcements in teacher education courses. The participation rate amounted to 45 %. Results indicate that CK, PCK, and PK are three unique and separable, but correlated domains of knowledge. Regression analyses show how particular learning opportunities are related to preservice biology teachers' CK, PCK, and PK. Both (a) the type of teacher education program and (b) the period of university studies are related to CK and PCK. Moreover, (c) additional subjects studied and (d) teaching experience seem relevant for PCK development. Conclusions for teacher education are drawn.

  10. Organisational closure in biological organisms.

    PubMed

    Mossio, Matteo; Moreno, Alvaro

    2010-01-01

    The central aim of this paper consists in arguing that biological organisms realize a specific kind of causal regime that we call "organisational closure"; i.e., a distinct level of causation, operating in addition to physical laws, generated by the action of material structures acting as constraints. We argue that organisational closure constitutes a fundamental property of biological systems since even its minimal instances are likely to possess at least some of the typical features of biological organisation as exhibited by more complex organisms. Yet, while being a necessary condition for biological organization, organisational closure underdetermines, as such, the whole set of requirements that a system has to satisfy in order to be taken as a paradigmatic example of organism. As we suggest, additional properties, as modular templates and control mechanisms via dynamical decoupling between constraints, are required to get the complexity typical of full-fledged biological organisms. PMID:21162371

  11. Polyimide processing additives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fletcher, James C. (Inventor); Pratt, J. Richard (Inventor); St.clair, Terry L. (Inventor); Stoakley, Diane M. (Inventor); Burks, Harold D. (Inventor)

    1992-01-01

    A process for preparing polyimides having enhanced melt flow properties is described. The process consists of heating a mixture of a high molecular weight poly-(amic acid) or polyimide with a low molecular weight amic acid or imide additive in the range of 0.05 to 15 percent by weight of additive. The polyimide powders so obtained show improved processability, as evidenced by lower melt viscosity by capillary rheometry. Likewise, films prepared from mixtures of polymers with additives show improved processability with earlier onset of stretching by TMA.

  12. Polyimide processing additives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pratt, J. Richard (Inventor); St.clair, Terry L. (Inventor); Stoakley, Diane M. (Inventor); Burks, Harold D. (Inventor)

    1993-01-01

    A process for preparing polyimides having enhanced melt flow properties is described. The process consists of heating a mixture of a high molecular weight poly-(amic acid) or polyimide with a low molecular weight amic acid or imide additive in the range of 0.05 to 15 percent by weight of the additive. The polyimide powders so obtained show improved processability, as evidenced by lower melt viscosity by capillary rheometry. Likewise, films prepared from mixtures of polymers with additives show improved processability with earlier onset of stretching by TMA.

  13. Interaction of dermatologically relevant nanoparticles with skin cells and skin

    PubMed Central

    Rancan, Fiorenza; Ahlberg, Sebastian; Nazemi, Berouz; Choe, Chun Sik; Darvin, Maxim E; Hadam, Sabrina; Blume-Peytavi, Ulrike; Loza, Kateryna; Diendorf, Jörg; Epple, Matthias; Graf, Christina; Rühl, Eckart; Meinke, Martina C; Lademann, Jürgen

    2014-01-01

    Summary The investigation of nanoparticle interactions with tissues is complex. High levels of standardization, ideally testing of different material types in the same biological model, and combinations of sensitive imaging and detection methods are required. Here, we present our studies on nanoparticle interactions with skin, skin cells, and biological media. Silica, titanium dioxide and silver particles were chosen as representative examples for different types of skin exposure to nanomaterials, e.g., unintended environmental exposure (silica) versus intended exposure through application of sunscreen (titanium dioxide) or antiseptics (silver). Because each particle type exhibits specific physicochemical properties, we were able to apply different combinations of methods to examine skin penetration and cellular uptake, including optical microscopy, electron microscopy, X-ray microscopy on cells and tissue sections, flow cytometry of isolated skin cells as well as Raman microscopy on whole tissue blocks. In order to assess the biological relevance of such findings, cell viability and free radical production were monitored on cells and in whole tissue samples. The combination of technologies and the joint discussion of results enabled us to look at nanoparticle–skin interactions and the biological relevance of our findings from different angles. PMID:25551064

  14. Biological warfare agents

    PubMed Central

    Thavaselvam, Duraipandian; Vijayaraghavan, Rajagopalan

    2010-01-01

    The recent bioterrorist attacks using anthrax spores have emphasized the need to detect and decontaminate critical facilities in the shortest possible time. There has been a remarkable progress in the detection, protection and decontamination of biological warfare agents as many instrumentation platforms and detection methodologies are developed and commissioned. Even then the threat of biological warfare agents and their use in bioterrorist attacks still remain a leading cause of global concern. Furthermore in the past decade there have been threats due to the emerging new diseases and also the re-emergence of old diseases and development of antimicrobial resistance and spread to new geographical regions. The preparedness against these agents need complete knowledge about the disease, better research and training facilities, diagnostic facilities and improved public health system. This review on the biological warfare agents will provide information on the biological warfare agents, their mode of transmission and spread and also the detection systems available to detect them. In addition the current information on the availability of commercially available and developing technologies against biological warfare agents has also been discussed. The risk that arise due to the use of these agents in warfare or bioterrorism related scenario can be mitigated with the availability of improved detection technologies. PMID:21829313

  15. Smog control fuel additives

    SciTech Connect

    Lundby, W.

    1993-06-29

    A method is described of controlling, reducing or eliminating, ozone and related smog resulting from photochemical reactions between ozone and automotive or industrial gases comprising the addition of iodine or compounds of iodine to hydrocarbon-base fuels prior to or during combustion in an amount of about 1 part iodine per 240 to 10,000,000 parts fuel, by weight, to be accomplished by: (a) the addition of these inhibitors during or after the refining or manufacturing process of liquid fuels; (b) the production of these inhibitors for addition into fuel tanks, such as automotive or industrial tanks; or (c) the addition of these inhibitors into combustion chambers of equipment utilizing solid fuels for the purpose of reducing ozone.

  16. Food Additives and Hyperkinesis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wender, Ester H.

    1977-01-01

    The hypothesis that food additives are causally associated with hyperkinesis and learning disabilities in children is reviewed, and available data are summarized. Available from: American Medical Association 535 North Dearborn Street Chicago, Illinois 60610. (JG)

  17. Additional Types of Neuropathy

    MedlinePlus

    ... A A Listen En Español Additional Types of Neuropathy Charcot's Joint Charcot's Joint, also called neuropathic arthropathy, ... can stop bone destruction and aid healing. Cranial Neuropathy Cranial neuropathy affects the 12 pairs of nerves ...

  18. Generating Student Interest in Physics: Using Relevant and Exciting Curriculum Additions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abdul-Razzaq, Wathiq; Bushey, Ryan

    2009-01-01

    As physics teachers at the collegiate level, we are faced with the difficulty of lack of interest in science among non-science majors. An example of this occurred in a conceptual physics course at West Virginia University, where we taught mostly students attending the education college. A poll taken of the class found 62% of the students wrote…

  19. Surface Tension Studies of Alkyl Esters and Epoxidized Alkyl Esters Relevant to Oleochemically Based Fuel Additives

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We report the surface tension of several epoxidized oleochemicals and their comparable fatty esters at temperatures between 25 and 60 deg C. Surface tensions of the olefins measured at 40 deg C range from 25.9 mN m-1, for isobutyl oleate, to 28.4 mN m-1 for methyl linoleate. The epoxy versions of ...

  20. Marine biology

    SciTech Connect

    Thurman, H.V.; Webber, H.H.

    1984-01-01

    This book discusses both taxonomic and ecological topics on marine biology. Full coverage of marine organisms of all five kingdoms is provided, along with interesting and thorough discussion of all major marine habitats. Organization into six major parts allows flexibility. It also provides insight into important topics such as disposal of nuclear waste at sea, the idea that life began on the ocean floor, and how whales, krill, and people interact. A full-color photo chapter reviews questions, and exercises. The contents are: an overview marine biology: fundamental concepts/investigating life in the ocean; the physical ocean, the ocean floor, the nature of water, the nature and motion of ocean water; general ecology, conditions for life in the sea, biological productivity and energy transfer; marine organisms; monera, protista, mycota and metaphyta; the smaller marine animals, the large animals marine habitats, the intertidal zone/benthos of the continental shelf, the photic zone, the deep ocean, the ocean under stress, marine pollution, appendix a: the metric system and conversion factors/ appendix b: prefixes and suffixes/ appendix c: taxonomic classification of common marine organisms, and glossary, and index.

  1. Macromolecules Relevant to Stone Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ryall, Rosemary L.; Cook, Alison F.; Thurgood, Lauren A.; Grover, Phulwinder K.

    2007-04-01

    Despite years of research, no single macromolecule in kidney calculi or in urine has yet been shown to fulfill a specific function in stone pathogenesis. In this paper we briefly review papers investigating the urinary excretion of individual macromolecules, their effects on calcium oxalate (CaOx) crystallization and attachment of crystals to renal epithelial cells, and the influence of lithogenic conditions on their renal expression in cultured cells and animal models. Using prothrombin fragment 1 (PTF1) and human serum albumin as examples, we show the types of patterns resulting from the binding of a fluorescently tagged protein to a specific CaOx monohydrate (COM) crystal face and its incorporation into the crystal structure. Molecular modeling is also used to illustrate how PTF1 can align with the atomic array on a COM crystal surface. We conclude that although many macromolecules are, by strict definition, relevant to stone formation, very few are probably truly influential.

  2. Mars simulations relevant to planetary protection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrenfreund, P.; Garry, J.; ten Kate, I.; Norberg, P.; van Sluis, K.

    We have recently investigated the native amino acid composition of two analogs of martian soil JSC-1 and Salten Skov A Mars simulation chamber has been built and used to expose samples of these analogs to temperature and lighting conditions similar to those found at low-latitudes on the martian surface We have quantified the amino acid content of these two martian regolith simulants using high performance liquid chromatography HPLC In doing so we have obtained data that are useful for biological chemical and physical studies of analogs to martian surface materials We have also investigated the influence of UV radiation low temperatures and gaseous CO 2 on the intrinsic amino acid composition of both martian soil analogs Exposure to energetic ultraviolet light in vacuum appears to cause a modest increase in the concentration of certain amino acids within the materials which has been interpreted as resulting from the degradation of microorganisms The influence of low temperatures shows that the accretion of condensed water on the soils leads to the destruction of amino acids supporting the idea that reactive chemical processes involving H 2 O are at work within the martian soil analogs We also tested the radiation resistance of Natronorubrum sp HG-1 halophilic bacteria in air and repeated those experiments in the Mars simulation chamber by mixing the halophilic microbe into martian regolith analogs In this paper we discuss the relevance of Mars simulations for life detection and for planetary protection issues

  3. Multiclass relevance vector machines: sparsity and accuracy.

    PubMed

    Psorakis, Ioannis; Damoulas, Theodoros; Girolami, Mark A

    2010-10-01

    In this paper, we investigate the sparsity and recognition capabilities of two approximate Bayesian classification algorithms, the multiclass multi-kernel relevance vector machines (mRVMs) that have been recently proposed. We provide an insight into the behavior of the mRVM models by performing a wide experimentation on a large range of real-world datasets. Furthermore, we monitor various model fitting characteristics that identify the predictive nature of the proposed methods and compare against existing classification techniques. By introducing novel convergence measures, sample selection strategies and model improvements, it is demonstrated that mRVMs can produce state-of-the-art results on multiclass discrimination problems. In addition, this is achieved by utilizing only a very small fraction of the available observation data. PMID:20805053

  4. Fractals in biology and medicine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Havlin, S.; Buldyrev, S. V.; Goldberger, A. L.; Mantegna, R. N.; Ossadnik, S. M.; Peng, C. K.; Simons, M.; Stanley, H. E.

    1995-01-01

    Our purpose is to describe some recent progress in applying fractal concepts to systems of relevance to biology and medicine. We review several biological systems characterized by fractal geometry, with a particular focus on the long-range power-law correlations found recently in DNA sequences containing noncoding material. Furthermore, we discuss the finding that the exponent alpha quantifying these long-range correlations ("fractal complexity") is smaller for coding than for noncoding sequences. We also discuss the application of fractal scaling analysis to the dynamics of heartbeat regulation, and report the recent finding that the normal heart is characterized by long-range "anticorrelations" which are absent in the diseased heart.

  5. The NASA Space Biology Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Halstead, T. W.

    1982-01-01

    A discussion is presented of the research conducted under the auspices of the NASA Space Biology Program. The objectives of this Program include the determination of how gravity affects and how it has shaped life on earth, the use of gravity as a tool to investigate relevant biological questions, and obtaining an understanding of how near-weightlessness affects both plants and animals in order to enhance the capability to use and explore space. Several areas of current developmental research are discussed and the future focus of the Program is considered.

  6. EDITORIAL: MEMS in biology and medicine MEMS in biology and medicine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pruitt, Beth L.; Herr, Amy E.

    2011-05-01

    Stimulating—the first word that springs to mind regarding the emerging and expanding role of MEMS in biological inquiry. When invited to guest-edit this special issue on 'MEMS in biology and medicine' for JMM, we jumped at the opportunity. Partly owing to the breadth of the stimulating research in this nascent area and partly owing to the stimulating of biological function made possible with MEMS accessible length and time scales, we were eager to assemble manuscripts detailing some of the most cutting edge biological research being conducted around the globe. In addition to cutting edge engineering, this special issue features challenging biological questions addressed with innovative MEMS technologies. Topics span from Yetisen and colleagues' inquiry into quantifying pollen tube behaviour in response to pistil tissues [1] to Morimoto and colleagues' engineering efforts to produce monodisperse droplets capable of encapsulating single cells (without surface modification) [2]. Questions are bold, including a means to achieve therapeutically-relevant scaling for enrichment of leukocytes from blood (Inglis et al [3]), assessing the dependence of Escherichia coli biofilm formation on bacterial signalling (Meyer et al [4]), and elucidation of adhesion dynamics of circulating tumour cells (Cheung et al [5]) among others. Technologies are diverse, including microfabricated magnetic actuators (Lee et al [6]), stimuli-responsive polymer nanocomposites (Hess et al [7]), and SU-8 electrothermal microgrippers (Chu et al [8]) to name but a few. Contributing authors do indeed span a large swathe of the globe, with contributions from Australia, Italy, China, Canada, Denmark, Japan, the USA and numerous other locations. Collaboration finds a home here—with researchers from macromolecular science and electrical engineering collaborating with the Veterans Affairs Medical Center or neurosurgery researchers working with biological and electrical engineers. The questions posed by

  7. The meaning of biological information

    PubMed Central

    Koonin, Eugene V.

    2016-01-01

    Biological information encoded in genomes is fundamentally different from and effectively orthogonal to Shannon entropy. The biologically relevant concept of information has to do with ‘meaning’, i.e. encoding various biological functions with various degree of evolutionary conservation. Apart from direct experimentation, the meaning, or biological information content, can be extracted and quantified from alignments of homologous nucleotide or amino acid sequences but generally not from a single sequence, using appropriately modified information theoretical formulae. For short, information encoded in genomes is defined vertically but not horizontally. Informally but substantially, biological information density seems to be equivalent to ‘meaning’ of genomic sequences that spans the entire range from sharply defined, universal meaning to effective meaninglessness. Large fractions of genomes, up to 90% in some plants, belong within the domain of fuzzy meaning. The sequences with fuzzy meaning can be recruited for various functions, with the meaning subsequently fixed, and also could perform generic functional roles that do not require sequence conservation. Biological meaning is continuously transferred between the genomes of selfish elements and hosts in the process of their coevolution. Thus, in order to adequately describe genome function and evolution, the concepts of information theory have to be adapted to incorporate the notion of meaning that is central to biology. PMID:26857678

  8. The meaning of biological information.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2016-03-13

    Biological information encoded in genomes is fundamentally different from and effectively orthogonal to Shannon entropy. The biologically relevant concept of information has to do with 'meaning', i.e. encoding various biological functions with various degree of evolutionary conservation. Apart from direct experimentation, the meaning, or biological information content, can be extracted and quantified from alignments of homologous nucleotide or amino acid sequences but generally not from a single sequence, using appropriately modified information theoretical formulae. For short, information encoded in genomes is defined vertically but not horizontally. Informally but substantially, biological information density seems to be equivalent to 'meaning' of genomic sequences that spans the entire range from sharply defined, universal meaning to effective meaninglessness. Large fractions of genomes, up to 90% in some plants, belong within the domain of fuzzy meaning. The sequences with fuzzy meaning can be recruited for various functions, with the meaning subsequently fixed, and also could perform generic functional roles that do not require sequence conservation. Biological meaning is continuously transferred between the genomes of selfish elements and hosts in the process of their coevolution. Thus, in order to adequately describe genome function and evolution, the concepts of information theory have to be adapted to incorporate the notion of meaning that is central to biology. PMID:26857678

  9. Copper: Toxicological relevance and mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Gaetke, Lisa M.; Chow-Johnson, Hannah S.; Chow, Ching K.

    2015-01-01

    Copper (Cu) is a vital mineral essential for many biological processes. The vast majority of all Cu in healthy humans is associated with enzyme prosthetic groups or bound to proteins. Cu homeostasis is tightly regulated through a complex system of Cu transporters and chaperone proteins. Excess or toxicity of Cu, which is associated with the pathogenesis of hepatic disorder, neurodegenerative changes and other disease conditions, can occur when Cu homeostasis is disrupted. The capacity to initiate oxidative damage is most commonly attributed to Cu-induced cellular toxicity. Recently, altered cellular events, including lipid metabolism, gene expression, alpha-synuclein aggregation, activation of acidic sphingomyelinase and release of ceramide, and temporal and spatial distribution of Cu in hepatocytes, as well as Cu-protein interaction in the nerve system, have been suggested to play a role in Cu toxicity. However, whether these changes are independent of, or secondary to, an altered cellular redox state of Cu remain to be elucidated. PMID:25199685

  10. Additive Manufacturing Infrared Inspection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaddy, Darrell

    2014-01-01

    Additive manufacturing is a rapid prototyping technology that allows parts to be built in a series of thin layers from plastic, ceramics, and metallics. Metallic additive manufacturing is an emerging form of rapid prototyping that allows complex structures to be built using various metallic powders. Significant time and cost savings have also been observed using the metallic additive manufacturing compared with traditional techniques. Development of the metallic additive manufacturing technology has advanced significantly over the last decade, although many of the techniques to inspect parts made from these processes have not advanced significantly or have limitations. Several external geometry inspection techniques exist such as Coordinate Measurement Machines (CMM), Laser Scanners, Structured Light Scanning Systems, or even traditional calipers and gages. All of the aforementioned techniques are limited to external geometry and contours or must use a contact probe to inspect limited internal dimensions. This presentation will document the development of a process for real-time dimensional inspection technique and digital quality record of the additive manufacturing process using Infrared camera imaging and processing techniques.

  11. Bridging Physics and Biology Using Resistance and Axons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dyer, Joshua M.

    2014-01-01

    When teaching physics, it is often difficult to get biology-oriented students to see the relevance of physics. A complaint often heard is that biology students are required to take physics for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) as part of a "weeding out" process, but that they don't feel like they need physics for biology.…

  12. IQ Predicts Biological Motion Perception in Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rutherford, M. D.; Troje, Nikolaus F.

    2012-01-01

    Biological motion is easily perceived by neurotypical observers when encoded in point-light displays. Some but not all relevant research shows significant deficits in biological motion perception among those with ASD, especially with respect to emotional displays. We tested adults with and without ASD on the perception of masked biological motion…

  13. Phenylethynyl Containing Reactive Additives

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Connell, John W. (Inventor); Smith, Joseph G., Jr. (Inventor); Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor)

    2002-01-01

    Phenylethynyl containing reactive additives were prepared from aromatic diamine, containing phenylethvnvl groups and various ratios of phthalic anhydride and 4-phenylethynviphthalic anhydride in glacial acetic acid to form the imide in one step or in N-methyl-2-pvrrolidinone to form the amide acid intermediate. The reactive additives were mixed in various amounts (10% to 90%) with oligomers containing either terminal or pendent phenylethynyl groups (or both) to reduce the melt viscosity and thereby enhance processability. Upon thermal cure, the additives react and become chemically incorporated into the matrix and effect an increase in crosslink density relative to that of the host resin. This resultant increase in crosslink density has advantageous consequences on the cured resin properties such as higher glass transition temperature and higher modulus as compared to that of the host resin.

  14. The Relationships Between Epistemic Beliefs in Biology and Approaches to Learning Biology Among Biology-Major University Students in Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Yi-Chun; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2012-12-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the relationships between students' epistemic beliefs in biology and their approaches to learning biology. To this end, two instruments, the epistemic beliefs in biology and the approaches to learning biology surveys, were developed and administered to 520 university biology students, respectively. By and large, it was found that the students reflected "mixed" motives in biology learning, while those who had more sophisticated epistemic beliefs tended to employ deep strategies. In addition, the results of paired t tests revealed that the female students were more likely to possess beliefs about biological knowledge residing in external authorities, to believe in a right answer, and to utilize rote learning as a learning strategy. Moreover, compared to juniors and seniors, freshmen and sophomores tended to hold less mature views on all factors of epistemic beliefs regarding biology. Another comparison indicated that theoretical biology students (e.g. students majoring in the Department of Biology) tended to have more mature beliefs in learning biology and more advanced strategies for biology learning than those students studying applied biology (e.g. in the Department of Biotechnology). Stepwise regression analysis, in general, indicated that students who valued the role of experiments and justify epistemic assumptions and knowledge claims based on evidence were more oriented towards having mixed motives and utilizing deep strategies to learn biology. In contrast, students who believed in the certainty of biological knowledge were more likely to adopt rote learning strategies and to aim to qualify in biology.

  15. Clinical Relevance of Biomarkers of Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Frijhoff, Jeroen; Winyard, Paul G.; Zarkovic, Neven; Davies, Sean S.; Stocker, Roland; Cheng, David; Knight, Annie R.; Taylor, Emma Louise; Oettrich, Jeannette; Ruskovska, Tatjana; Gasparovic, Ana Cipak; Cuadrado, Antonio; Weber, Daniela; Poulsen, Henrik Enghusen; Grune, Tilman; Schmidt, Harald H.H.W.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Significance: Oxidative stress is considered to be an important component of various diseases. A vast number of methods have been developed and used in virtually all diseases to measure the extent and nature of oxidative stress, ranging from oxidation of DNA to proteins, lipids, and free amino acids. Recent Advances: An increased understanding of the biology behind diseases and redox biology has led to more specific and sensitive tools to measure oxidative stress markers, which are very diverse and sometimes very low in abundance. Critical Issues: The literature is very heterogeneous. It is often difficult to draw general conclusions on the significance of oxidative stress biomarkers, as only in a limited proportion of diseases have a range of different biomarkers been used, and different biomarkers have been used to study different diseases. In addition, biomarkers are often measured using nonspecific methods, while specific methodologies are often too sophisticated or laborious for routine clinical use. Future Directions: Several markers of oxidative stress still represent a viable biomarker opportunity for clinical use. However, positive findings with currently used biomarkers still need to be validated in larger sample sizes and compared with current clinical standards to establish them as clinical diagnostics. It is important to realize that oxidative stress is a nuanced phenomenon that is difficult to characterize, and one biomarker is not necessarily better than others. The vast diversity in oxidative stress between diseases and conditions has to be taken into account when selecting the most appropriate biomarker. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 23, 1144–1170. PMID:26415143

  16. Grand challenges in space synthetic biology.

    PubMed

    Menezes, Amor A; Montague, Michael G; Cumbers, John; Hogan, John A; Arkin, Adam P

    2015-12-01

    Space synthetic biology is a branch of biotechnology dedicated to engineering biological systems for space exploration, industry and science. There is significant public and private interest in designing robust and reliable organisms that can assist on long-duration astronaut missions. Recent work has also demonstrated that such synthetic biology is a feasible payload minimization and life support approach as well. This article identifies the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in the field of space synthetic biology, while highlighting relevant progress. It also outlines anticipated broader benefits from this field, because space engineering advances will drive technological innovation on Earth. PMID:26631337

  17. Grand challenges in space synthetic biology

    PubMed Central

    Montague, Michael G.; Cumbers, John; Hogan, John A.

    2015-01-01

    Space synthetic biology is a branch of biotechnology dedicated to engineering biological systems for space exploration, industry and science. There is significant public and private interest in designing robust and reliable organisms that can assist on long-duration astronaut missions. Recent work has also demonstrated that such synthetic biology is a feasible payload minimization and life support approach as well. This article identifies the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in the field of space synthetic biology, while highlighting relevant progress. It also outlines anticipated broader benefits from this field, because space engineering advances will drive technological innovation on Earth. PMID:26631337

  18. Land Biology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kanemasu, E. T.

    1984-01-01

    The advancing technology of our civilization on Earth affects our environment on a local, regional and global scale. Local effects can feed into larger scale effects because of positive feedbacks in our system. The ability to understand, quantify and predict the large scale and long-term effects of technology is truly mind boggling. The understanding of these effects, which is paramount to the quality of life on Earth, will depend upon the ability to interact with scientists from the biological, atmospheric, oceanographic and geological sciences and develop a common communication system and unified objectives.

  19. Biobased lubricant additives

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fully biobased lubricants are those formulated using all biobased ingredients, i.e. biobased base oils and biobased additives. Such formulations provide the maximum environmental, safety, and economic benefits expected from a biobased product. Currently, there are a number of biobased base oils that...

  20. Multifunctional fuel additives

    SciTech Connect

    Baillargeon, D.J.; Cardis, A.B.; Heck, D.B.

    1991-03-26

    This paper discusses a composition comprising a major amount of a liquid hydrocarbyl fuel and a minor low-temperature flow properties improving amount of an additive product of the reaction of a suitable diol and product of a benzophenone tetracarboxylic dianhydride and a long-chain hydrocarbyl aminoalcohol.

  1. Integration of Proteomics, Bioinformatics, and Systems Biology in Traumatic Brain Injury Biomarker Discovery

    PubMed Central

    Guingab-Cagmat, J.D.; Cagmat, E.B.; Hayes, R.L.; Anagli, J.

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major medical crisis without any FDA-approved pharmacological therapies that have been demonstrated to improve functional outcomes. It has been argued that discovery of disease-relevant biomarkers might help to guide successful clinical trials for TBI. Major advances in mass spectrometry (MS) have revolutionized the field of proteomic biomarker discovery and facilitated the identification of several candidate markers that are being further evaluated for their efficacy as TBI biomarkers. However, several hurdles have to be overcome even during the discovery phase which is only the first step in the long process of biomarker development. The high-throughput nature of MS-based proteomic experiments generates a massive amount of mass spectral data presenting great challenges in downstream interpretation. Currently, different bioinformatics platforms are available for functional analysis and data mining of MS-generated proteomic data. These tools provide a way to convert data sets to biologically interpretable results and functional outcomes. A strategy that has promise in advancing biomarker development involves the triad of proteomics, bioinformatics, and systems biology. In this review, a brief overview of how bioinformatics and systems biology tools analyze, transform, and interpret complex MS datasets into biologically relevant results is discussed. In addition, challenges and limitations of proteomics, bioinformatics, and systems biology in TBI biomarker discovery are presented. A brief survey of researches that utilized these three overlapping disciplines in TBI biomarker discovery is also presented. Finally, examples of TBI biomarkers and their applications are discussed. PMID:23750150

  2. Morphological characters of the thickbody skate Amblyraja frerichsi (Krefft 1968) (Rajiformes: Rajidae), with notes on its biology.

    PubMed

    Bustamante, Carlos; Lamilla, Julio; Concha, Francisco; Ebert, David A; Bennett, Michael B

    2012-01-01

    Detailed descriptions of morphological features, morphometrics, neurocranium anatomy, clasper structure and egg case descriptions are provided for the thickbody skate Amblyraja frerichsi; a rare, deep-water species from Chile, Argentina and Falkland Islands. The species diagnosis is complemented from new observations and aspects such as colour, size and distribution are described. Geographic and bathymetric distributional ranges are discussed as relevant features of this taxońs biology. Additionally, the conservation status is assessed including bycatch records from Chilean fisheries. PMID:22768186

  3. Morphological Characters of the Thickbody Skate Amblyraja frerichsi (Krefft 1968) (Rajiformes: Rajidae), with Notes on Its Biology

    PubMed Central

    Bustamante, Carlos; Lamilla, Julio; Concha, Francisco; Ebert, David A.; Bennett, Michael B.

    2012-01-01

    Detailed descriptions of morphological features, morphometrics, neurocranium anatomy, clasper structure and egg case descriptions are provided for the thickbody skate Amblyraja frerichsi; a rare, deep-water species from Chile, Argentina and Falkland Islands. The species diagnosis is complemented from new observations and aspects such as colour, size and distribution are described. Geographic and bathymetric distributional ranges are discussed as relevant features of this taxońs biology. Additionally, the conservation status is assessed including bycatch records from Chilean fisheries. PMID:22768186

  4. Student Voice: Tapping the Potential of Relationships, Relevance, and Rigor

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wallach, Catherine A.; Ramsey, Brinton S.; Lowry, Louise K.; Copland, Michael

    2006-01-01

    This report is based on a three-year study of seven small high schools in Washington State. We use "the new 3 Rs" of rigor, relevance, and relationships as a framework to examine student perspectives on what happens in their small schools and classrooms. In addition, we have added a fourth principle, student voice, which refers to student…

  5. Laboratory Animal Medicine: Teaching for Relevance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harkness, J. E.

    1977-01-01

    A mechanism for augmenting the relevance of instruction in laboratory animal medicine is suggested: the identification of practice-relevant content. This identification helps foster a positive attitude toward the subject and facilitates the retention of information. (LBH)

  6. Detoxification reactions: relevance to aging

    PubMed Central

    Zimniak, Piotr

    2008-01-01

    It is widely (although not universally) accepted that organismal aging is the result of two opposing forces: (i) processes that destabilize the organism and increase the probability of death, and (ii) longevity assurance mechanisms that prevent, repair, or contain damage. Processes of the first group are often chemical and physico-chemical in nature, and are either inevitable or only under marginal biological control. In contrast, protective mechanisms are genetically determined and are subject to natural selection. Life span is therefore largely dependent on the investment into protective mechanisms which evolve to optimize reproductive fitness. Recent data indicate that toxicants, both environmental and generated endogenously by metabolism, are major contributors to macromolecular damage and physiological dysregulation that contribute to aging; electrophilic carbonyl compounds derived from lipid peroxidation appear to be particularly important. As a consequence, detoxification mechanisms, including the removal of electrophiles by glutathione transferase-catalyzed conjugation, are major longevity assurance mechanisms. The expression of multiple detoxification enzymes, each with a significant but relatively modest effect on longevity, is coordinately regulated by signaling pathways such as insulin/insulin-like signaling, explaining the large effect of such pathways on life span. The major aging-related toxicants and their cognate detoxification systems are discussed in this review. PMID:18547875

  7. Solving geologic problems resolving relevant anomalies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiappini, M.

    2012-12-01

    Remotely sensed data such as high resolution aeromagnetics can shed new light on the setting of tectonic and volcanic areas. This technique is, in fact, particularly suitable to study these areas due to the potential magnetic contrasts linked to volcanic structures. Furthermore, surveying poorly accessible sites with airborne geophysics can be expeditious and effective. The addition of new sensors on airborne platforms improves the efficiency of surveys and provides multi-source imaging. Also it is an aid to better resolving geophysical anomalies and/or surface features relevant to an effective geologic interpretation. The INGV Airborne Geophysics Science Team has investigated a large variety of active volcanoes and tectonic areas in different types of environment. One investigation revealed an unknown buried volcano in the Mediterranean Sea, developed along seismically active faults. Airborne magnetic data collected over Tenerife, Canary Islands, provided new evidence about the structure and growth of ocean island volcanoes. Other data sets delineate hidden tectonic and volcanic structures in Southern Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy. These examples and other newly acquired aeromagnetic data, integrated with additional airborne observations will be presented and discussed.

  8. Radiolabeling in Biology.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoying; Zhang, Yangde; Malhotra, Anshoo

    2015-05-01

    Chemistry is the science of chemical reactions, the study of chemical properties, composition, and structure of a molecule. When the molecule under observation is of a biological origin (proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, or nucleic acids), the study of its chemical properties, reactions, and structure is known as biochemistry. Similarly, if the molecule or a biochemical under observation is radioactive, the science becomes radiochemistry or radio biochemistry. So, chemistry is the science which fuses these two diverse fields of applied sciences. Fusion of these two sciences on chemistry platform has enabled the development of various new radioactive formulations which are called as radiopharmaceuticals and are being used the world over for clinical as well as experimental purposes. For the successful development of radiopharmaceuticals, we require in-depth understanding of both biochemistry as well as radiochemistry. So, the present review article summarizes basic relevant details and experimental advances in both these sciences with regard to development of radiopharmaceuticals. PMID:25413964

  9. Boron addition to alloys

    SciTech Connect

    Coad, B. C.

    1985-08-20

    A process for addition of boron to an alloy which involves forming a melt of the alloy and a reactive metal, selected from the group consisting of aluminum, titanium, zirconium and mixtures thereof to the melt, maintaining the resulting reactive mixture in the molten state and reacting the boric oxide with the reactive metal to convert at least a portion of the boric oxide to boron which dissolves in the resulting melt, and to convert at least portion of the reactive metal to the reactive metal oxide, which oxide remains with the resulting melt, and pouring the resulting melt into a gas stream to form a first atomized powder which is subsequently remelted with further addition of boric oxide, re-atomized, and thus reprocessed to convert essentially all the reactive metal to metal oxide to produce a powdered alloy containing specified amounts of boron.

  10. Tackifier for addition polyimides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Butler, J. M.; St.clair, T. L.

    1980-01-01

    A modification to the addition polyimide, LaRC-160, was prepared to improve tack and drape and increase prepeg out-time. The essentially solventless, high viscosity laminating resin is synthesized from low cost liquid monomers. The modified version takes advantage of a reactive, liquid plasticizer which is used in place of solvent and helps solve a major problem of maintaining good prepeg tack and drape, or the ability of the prepeg to adhere to adjacent plies and conform to a desired shape during the lay up process. This alternate solventless approach allows both longer life of the polymer prepeg and the processing of low void laminates. This approach appears to be applicable to all addition polyimide systems.

  11. Vinyl capped addition polyimides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vannucci, Raymond D. (Inventor); Malarik, Diane C. (Inventor); Delvigs, Peter (Inventor)

    1991-01-01

    Polyimide resins (PMR) are generally useful where high strength and temperature capabilities are required (at temperatures up to about 700 F). Polyimide resins are particularly useful in applications such as jet engine compressor components, for example, blades, vanes, air seals, air splitters, and engine casing parts. Aromatic vinyl capped addition polyimides are obtained by reacting a diamine, an ester of tetracarboxylic acid, and an aromatic vinyl compound. Low void materials with improved oxidative stability when exposed to 700 F air may be fabricated as fiber reinforced high molecular weight capped polyimide composites. The aromatic vinyl capped polyimides are provided with a more aromatic nature and are more thermally stable than highly aliphatic, norbornenyl-type end-capped polyimides employed in PMR resins. The substitution of aromatic vinyl end-caps for norbornenyl end-caps in addition polyimides results in polymers with improved oxidative stability.

  12. Electrophilic addition of astatine

    SciTech Connect

    Norseev, Yu.V.; Vasaros, L.; Nhan, D.D.; Huan, N.K.

    1988-03-01

    It has been shown for the first time that astatine is capable of undergoing addition reactions to unsaturated hydrocarbons. A new compound of astatine, viz., ethylene astatohydrin, has been obtained, and its retention numbers of squalane, Apiezon, and tricresyl phosphate have been found. The influence of various factors on the formation of ethylene astatohydrin has been studied. It has been concluded on the basis of the results obtained that the univalent cations of astatine in an acidic medium is protonated hypoastatous acid.

  13. Hydrocarbon fuel additive

    SciTech Connect

    Ambrogio, S.

    1989-02-28

    This patent describes the method of fuel storage or combustion, wherein the fuel supply contains small amounts of water, the step of adding to the fuel supply an additive comprising a blend of a hydrophilic agent chosen from the group of ethylene glycol, n-butyl alcohol, and cellosolve in the range of 22-37% by weight; ethoxylated nonylphenol in the range of 26-35% by weight; nonylphenol polyethylene glycol ether in the range of 32-43% by weight.

  14. Retrieving relevant experiments: The case of microRNA microarrays.

    PubMed

    Açıcı, Koray; Terzi, Yunus Kasım; Oğul, Hasan

    2015-08-01

    Content-based retrieval of biological experiments in large public repositories is a recent challenge in computational biology and bioinformatics. The task is, in general, to search in a database using a query-by-example without any experimental meta-data annotation. Here, we consider a more specific problem that seeks a solution for retrieving relevant microRNA experiments from microarray repositories. A computational framework is proposed with this objective. The framework adapts a normal-uniform mixture model for identifying differentially expressed microRNAs in microarray profiling experiments. A rank-based thresholding scheme is offered to binarize real-valued experiment fingerprints based on differential expression. An effective similarity metric is introduced to compare categorical fingerprints, which in turn infers the relevance between two experiments. Two different views of experimental relevance are evaluated, one for disease association and another for embryonic germ layer, to discern the retrieval ability of the proposed model. To the best of our knowledge, the experiment retrieval task is investigated for the first time in the context of microRNA microarrays. PMID:26116091

  15. Identifying relevant positions in proteins by Critical Variable Selection.

    PubMed

    Grigolon, Silvia; Franz, Silvio; Marsili, Matteo

    2016-06-21

    Evolution in its course has found a variety of solutions to the same optimisation problem. The advent of high-throughput genomic sequencing has made available extensive data from which, in principle, one can infer the underlying structure on which biological functions rely. In this paper, we present a new method aimed at the extraction of sites encoding structural and functional properties from a set of protein primary sequences, namely a multiple sequence alignment. The method, called critical variable selection, is based on the idea that subsets of relevant sites correspond to subsequences that occur with a particularly broad frequency distribution in the dataset. By applying this algorithm to in silico sequences, to the response regulator receiver and to the voltage sensor domain of ion channels, we show that this procedure recovers not only the information encoded in single site statistics and pairwise correlations but also captures dependencies going beyond pairwise correlations. The method proposed here is complementary to statistical coupling analysis, in that the most relevant sites predicted by the two methods differ markedly. We find robust and consistent results for datasets as small as few hundred sequences that reveal a hidden hierarchy of sites that are consistent with the present knowledge on biologically relevant sites and evolutionary dynamics. This suggests that critical variable selection is capable of identifying a core of sites encoding functional and structural information in a multiple sequence alignment. PMID:26974515

  16. Functional Generalized Additive Models.

    PubMed

    McLean, Mathew W; Hooker, Giles; Staicu, Ana-Maria; Scheipl, Fabian; Ruppert, David

    2014-01-01

    We introduce the functional generalized additive model (FGAM), a novel regression model for association studies between a scalar response and a functional predictor. We model the link-transformed mean response as the integral with respect to t of F{X(t), t} where F(·,·) is an unknown regression function and X(t) is a functional covariate. Rather than having an additive model in a finite number of principal components as in Müller and Yao (2008), our model incorporates the functional predictor directly and thus our model can be viewed as the natural functional extension of generalized additive models. We estimate F(·,·) using tensor-product B-splines with roughness penalties. A pointwise quantile transformation of the functional predictor is also considered to ensure each tensor-product B-spline has observed data on its support. The methods are evaluated using simulated data and their predictive performance is compared with other competing scalar-on-function regression alternatives. We illustrate the usefulness of our approach through an application to brain tractography, where X(t) is a signal from diffusion tensor imaging at position, t, along a tract in the brain. In one example, the response is disease-status (case or control) and in a second example, it is the score on a cognitive test. R code for performing the simulations and fitting the FGAM can be found in supplemental materials available online. PMID:24729671

  17. The Personal Relevance of the Social Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    VanSickle, Ronald L.

    1990-01-01

    Conceptualizes a personal-relevance framework derived from Ronald L. VanSickle's five areas of life integrated with four general motivating goals from Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs and Richard and Patricia Schmuck's social motivation theory. Illustrates ways to apply the personal relevance framework to make social studies more relevant to…

  18. The Viking biology results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klein, Harold P.

    1989-01-01

    A brief review of the purposes and the results from the Viking Biology experiments is presented, in the expectation that the lessons learned from this mission will be useful in planning future approaches to the biological exploration of Mars. Since so little was then known about potential micro-environments on Mars, three different experiments were included in the Viking mission, each one based on different assumptions about what Martian organisms might be like. In addition to the Viking Biology Instrument (VBI), important corollary information was obtained from the Viking lander imaging system and from the molecular analysis experiments that were conducted using the gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer (GCMS) instrument. No biological objects were noted by the lander imaging instrument. The GCMS did not detect any organic compounds. A description of the tests conducted by the Gas Exchange Experiment, the Labeled Release experiment, and the Pyrolytic Release experiment is given. Results are discussed. Taken as a whole, the Viking data yielded no unequivocal evidence for a Martian biota at either landing site. The results also revealed the presence of one or more reactive oxidants in the surface material and these need to be further characterized, as does the range of micro-environments, before embarking upon future searches for extant life on Mars.

  19. Engineering life through Synthetic Biology.

    PubMed

    Chopra, Paras; Kamma, Akhil

    2006-01-01

    Synthetic Biology is a field involving synthesis of novel biological systems which are not generally found in nature. It has brought a new paradigm in science as it has enabled scientists to create life from the scratch, hence helping better understand the principles of biology. The viability of living organisms that use unnatural molecules is also being explored. Unconventional projects such as DNA playing tic-tac-toe, bacterial photographic film, etc. are taking biology to its extremes. The field holds a promise for mass production of cheap drugs and programming bacteria to seek-and-destroy tumors in the body. However, the complexity of biological systems make the field a challenging one. In addition to this, there are other major technical and ethical challenges which need to be addressed before the field realizes its true potential. PMID:17274769

  20. The biology of growth.

    PubMed

    Cameron, Noël

    2008-01-01

    Variability in human growth is not only in the timing of critical periods within the whole pattern of growth but also in the magnitude and rate of change coincident with the period. In addition, for a radical change in, e.g., height to occur there must also be changes in the anatomical parts that make up total height and these changes are themselves variable. Acceleration, for instance in height velocity, may be the result of different changes in the length of the spine, femur, and/or tibia, each of which may contribute differently to the total process. In addition, not only may the process be variable within a single child, it may also be variable between different children of the same or opposite sexes. The mathematical and statistical problems arising from the seemingly simple process of an increase in height are thus complex. In order to review the biology of human growth this contribution will discuss the principles of growth that are fundamental to our ability to interpret the response of the child to factors that might modify the genetically programmed pattern of growth from conception to maturity. In this way the biology of human growth will be described by a set of phenomena that reflect the actions of biological control mechanisms. These mechanisms are subject to genetic and environmental influences and their expression is characterised by variation in timing, magnitude, and duration. PMID:18196941

  1. Biological Effects of Directed Energy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dayton, Thomas; Beason, Charles; Hitt, M. K.; Rogers, Walter; Cook, Michael

    2002-11-01

    This Final Report summarizes the biological effects research conducted by Veridian Engineering personnel under contract F41624-96-C-9009 in support of the Air Force Research Laboratory's Radio Frequency Radiation Branch from April 1997 to April 2002. Biological effects research and consultation were provided in five major areas: Active Denial System (also known as Vehicle Mounted Active Denial System), radio frequency radiation (RFR) health and safety, non-lethal weapon biological effects research, the newly formed Joint Non-Lethal Weapons Human Effects Center of Excellence, and Biotechnology. The report is organized by research efforts within the major research areas, providing title, objective, a brief description, relevance to the AF or DoD, funding, and products.

  2. NASA Workshop on Biological Adaptation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morey-Holton, Emily (Editor); Tischler, Marc (Editor)

    1988-01-01

    A workshop was convened to review the current program in Space Biology Biological Adaptation Research and its objectives and to identify future research directions. Two research areas emerged from these deliberations: gravitational effects on structures and biomineralization and gravity affected regulatory mechanisms. The participants also recommended that research concentrate on rapidly growing animals, since gravity effects may be more pronounced during growth and development. Both research areas were defined and future research directions were identified. The recommendations of the workshop will assist the Life Sciences Division of NASA in it assessment and long-range planning of these areas of space biology. Equally important, the workshop was intended to stimulate thought and research among those attending so that they would, in turn, interest, excite, and involve other members of the academic community in research efforts relevant to these programs.

  3. Toxicity of nanocrystal quantum dots: the relevance of surface modifications.

    PubMed

    Hoshino, Akiyoshi; Hanada, Sanshiro; Yamamoto, Kenji

    2011-07-01

    With the development of nanotechnology, nanometer-sized products smaller than several 100 nm have been applied for all areas of science and technology. The nanometer-sized products, including carbon nanotubes, fullerene derivatives, and nanocrystals made of various materials, are widely employed as novel tools in various fields, not only in material engineering, electronics, plastics, automobile, aviation, and aerospace industries, but also even in cellular biology, molecular biology, and basic and clinical medical fields. In particular, nanocrystal quantum dots (QDs) have been widely used in biological and medical studies because of their far brighter photoemission and photostability. The physical and chemical properties of QDs have been circumstantially investigated, but little is known about the potential harmful effects of QDs on human health. In addition to the physical and chemical properties of the QDs, their toxicity and biological behavior are generally regulated by three other conditions: (1) the QD core material itself, (2) the surface modifications of the QD, and (3) the external environmental condition of the QDs. We herein report on the in vitro and in vivo toxicity and biological behavior of nanocrystals such as QDs. Accumulating evidence suggests that the QD-capping material, rather than the core metalloid complex, is responsible for the majority of their toxicity and biological activity. For example, molecules covered with a toxic agent showed cytotoxicity, whereas QDs conjugated with biomolecules retained the biological effects of the conjugate. PMID:21445587

  4. Peripheral neuropathies during biologic therapies.

    PubMed

    Yagita, Masato; Hamano, Toshiaki; Hatachi, Saori; Fujita, Masaaki

    2016-01-01

    Peripheral neuropathies should be recognized as the adverse effects of biological agents, especially anti-TNF agents. However, no solid clinical databases for biological agent-associated peripheral neuropathies (BAPN) have been established in Japan. Here we report two cases of peripheral neuropathy associated with anti-TNF agents. One was peroneal motor neuropathy. The other case was chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy. In addition, we summarize the previous reports on BAPN and discuss their prevalence rate, pathogenesis and management. PMID:24313920

  5. Sustainability Characterization for Additive Manufacturing

    PubMed Central

    Mani, Mahesh; Lyons, Kevin W; Gupta, SK

    2014-01-01

    Additive manufacturing (AM) has the potential to create geometrically complex parts that require a high degree of customization, using less material and producing less waste. Recent studies have shown that AM can be an economically viable option for use by the industry, yet there are some inherent challenges associated with AM for wider acceptance. The lack of standards in AM impedes its use for parts production since industries primarily depend on established standards in processes and material selection to ensure the consistency and quality. Inability to compare AM performance against traditional manufacturing methods can be a barrier for implementing AM processes. AM process sustainability has become a driver due to growing environmental concerns for manufacturing. This has reinforced the importance to understand and characterize AM processes for sustainability. Process characterization for sustainability will help close the gaps for comparing AM performance to traditional manufacturing methods. Based on a literature review, this paper first examines the potential environmental impacts of AM. A methodology for sustainability characterization of AM is then proposed to serve as a resource for the community to benchmark AM processes for sustainability. Next, research perspectives are discussed along with relevant standardization efforts. PMID:26601038

  6. Sustainability Characterization for Additive Manufacturing.

    PubMed

    Mani, Mahesh; Lyons, Kevin W; Gupta, S K

    2014-01-01

    Additive manufacturing (AM) has the potential to create geometrically complex parts that require a high degree of customization, using less material and producing less waste. Recent studies have shown that AM can be an economically viable option for use by the industry, yet there are some inherent challenges associated with AM for wider acceptance. The lack of standards in AM impedes its use for parts production since industries primarily depend on established standards in processes and material selection to ensure the consistency and quality. Inability to compare AM performance against traditional manufacturing methods can be a barrier for implementing AM processes. AM process sustainability has become a driver due to growing environmental concerns for manufacturing. This has reinforced the importance to understand and characterize AM processes for sustainability. Process characterization for sustainability will help close the gaps for comparing AM performance to traditional manufacturing methods. Based on a literature review, this paper first examines the potential environmental impacts of AM. A methodology for sustainability characterization of AM is then proposed to serve as a resource for the community to benchmark AM processes for sustainability. Next, research perspectives are discussed along with relevant standardization efforts. PMID:26601038

  7. Siloxane containing addition polyimides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maudgal, S.; St. Clair, T. L.

    1984-01-01

    Addition polyimide oligomers have been synthesized from bis(gamma-aminopropyl) tetramethyldisiloxane and 3, 3', 4, 4'-benzophenonetetracarboxylic dianhydride using a variety of latent crosslinking groups as endcappers. The prepolymers were isolated and characterized for solubility (in amide, chlorinated and ether solvents), melt flow and cure properties. The most promising systems, maleimide and acetylene terminated prepolymers, were selected for detailed study. Graphite cloth reinforced composites were prepared and properties compared with those of graphite/Kerimid 601, a commercially available bismaleimide. Mixtures of the maleimide terminated system with Kerimid 601, in varying proportions, were also studied.

  8. Oil additive process

    SciTech Connect

    Bishop, H.

    1988-10-18

    This patent describes a method of making an additive comprising: (a) adding 2 parts by volume of 3% sodium hypochlorite to 45 parts by volume of diesel oil fuel to form a sulphur free fuel, (b) removing all water and foreign matter formed by the sodium hypochlorite, (c) blending 30 parts by volume of 24% lead naphthanate with 15 parts by volume of the sulphur free fuel, 15 parts by volume of light-weight material oil to form a blended mixture, and (d) heating the blended mixture slowly and uniformly to 152F.

  9. Correlation Analysis between SNP and Expression Arrays in Gliomas Identify Potentially Relevant Targets Genes1

    PubMed Central

    Kotliarov, Yuri; Kotliarova, Svetlana; Charong, Nurdina; Li, Aiguo; Walling, Jennifer; Aquilanti, Elisa; Ahn, Susie; Steed, Mary Ellen; Su, Qin; Center, Angela; Zenklusen, Jean C; Fine, Howard A.

    2008-01-01

    Primary brain tumors are a major cause of cancer mortality in the United States. Therapy for gliomas, the most common type of primary brain tumors, remains suboptimal. The development of improved therapeutics will require greater knowledge of the biology of gliomas at both the genomic and transcriptional levels. We have previously reported whole genome profiling of chromosome copy number alterations (CNA) in gliomas, and now present our findings on how those changes may affect transcription of genes that may be involved in tumor induction and progression. By calculating correlation values of mRNA expression vs. DNA copy number average in a moving window around a given RNA probeset, biologically relevant information can be gained that is obscured by the analysis of a single data type. Correlation coefficients ranged from −0.6 to 0.7; highly significant when compared to previously studies. Most correlated genes are located on chromosomes 1, 7, 9, 10, 13, 14, 19, 20 and 22, chromosomes known to have genomic alterations in gliomas. Additionally, we were able to identify CNAs whose gene expression correlation suggests possible epigenetic regulation. This analysis revealed a number of interesting candidates such as CXCL12, PTER, LRRN6C, among others. The results have been verified using real-time PCR and methylation sequencing assays. These data will further help differentiate genes involved in the induction and/or maintenance of the tumorigenic process from those that are mere passenger mutations, thereby enriching for a population of potentially new therapeutic molecular targets. PMID:19190341

  10. Introductory physics in biological context: An approach to improve introductory physics for life science students

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crouch, Catherine H.; Heller, Kenneth

    2014-05-01

    We describe restructuring the introductory physics for life science students (IPLS) course to better support these students in using physics to understand their chosen fields. Our courses teach physics using biologically rich contexts. Specifically, we use examples in which fundamental physics contributes significantly to understanding a biological system to make explicit the value of physics to the life sciences. This requires selecting the course content to reflect the topics most relevant to biology while maintaining the fundamental disciplinary structure of physics. In addition to stressing the importance of the fundamental principles of physics, an important goal is developing students' quantitative and problem solving skills. Our guiding pedagogical framework is the cognitive apprenticeship model, in which learning occurs most effectively when students can articulate why what they are learning matters to them. In this article, we describe our courses, summarize initial assessment data, and identify needs for future research.

  11. Structural Biology Fact Sheet

    MedlinePlus

    ... Home > Science Education > Structural Biology Fact Sheet Structural Biology Fact Sheet Tagline (Optional) Middle/Main Content Area What is structural biology? Structural biology is a field of science focused ...

  12. Biological Cluster Mass Spectrometry

    PubMed Central

    Winograd, Nicholas; Garrison, Barbara J.

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews the new physics and new applications of secondary ion mass spectrometry using cluster ion probes. These probes, particularly C60, exhibit enhanced molecular desorption with improved sensitivity owing to the unique nature of the energy-deposition process. In addition, these projectiles are capable of eroding molecular solids while retaining the molecular specificity of mass spectrometry. When the beams are microfocused to a spot on the sample, bioimaging experiments in two and three dimensions are feasible. We describe emerging theoretical models that allow the energy-deposition process to be understood on an atomic and molecular basis. Moreover, experiments on model systems are described that allow protocols for imaging on biological materials to be implemented. Finally, we present recent applications of imaging to biological tissue and single cells to illustrate the future directions of this methodology. PMID:20055679

  13. Spatial Aspects in Biological System Simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Resat, Haluk; Costa, Michelle N.; Shankaran, Harish

    2011-01-30

    Mathematical models of the dynamical properties of biological systems aim to improve our understanding of the studied system with the ultimate goal of being able to predict system responses in the absence of experimentation. Despite the enormous advances that have been made in biological modeling and simulation, the inherently multiscale character of biological systems and the stochasticity of biological processes continue to present significant computational and conceptual challenges. Biological systems often consist of well-organized structural hierarchies, which inevitably lead to multiscale problems. This chapter introduces and discusses the advantages and shortcomings of several simulation methods that are being used by the scientific community to investigate the spatio-temporal properties of model biological systems. We first describe the foundations of the methods and then describe their relevance and possible application areas with illustrative examples from our own research. Possible ways to address the encountered computational difficulties are also discussed.

  14. 76 FR 34075 - Request for Information (RFI) To Identify and Obtain Relevant Information From Public or Private...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-06-10

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Request for Information (RFI) To Identify and Obtain Relevant Information From Public or Private Entities With an Interest in Biovigilance; Extension AGENCY: Department of Health and Human... provide additional opportunities for potential stakeholders to identify and obtain relevant...

  15. Enhancement, disability and the riddle of the relevant circumstances.

    PubMed

    Zohny, Hazem

    2016-09-01

    The welfarist account of enhancement and disability holds enhanced and disabled states on a spectrum: the former are biological or psychological states that increase the chances of a person leading a good life in the relevant set of circumstances, while the latter decrease those chances. Here, I focus on a particular issue raised by this account: what should we count as part of an individual's relevant set of circumstances when thinking about enhanced and disabled states? Specifically, is social prejudice relevant to an individual's circumstances in regards to how disabled or enhanced they are? For instance, if an individual is discriminated against on the basis of their skin colour, and this leads to a reduction in their well-being, the welfarist account suggests that their skin colour is a disability. To avoid such a seeming mislabel, Savulescu and Kahane have argued for excluding social prejudice from counting as a relevant circumstance to their welfarist definition of disability. I argue, however, that this exclusion of social prejudice is unsatisfactory and incompatible with the goals of this account. PMID:27178536

  16. Simulating Biological and Non-Biological Motion

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bruzzo, Angela; Gesierich, Benno; Wohlschlager, Andreas

    2008-01-01

    It is widely accepted that the brain processes biological and non-biological movements in distinct neural circuits. Biological motion, in contrast to non-biological motion, refers to active movements of living beings. Aim of our experiment was to investigate the mechanisms underlying mental simulation of these two movement types. Subjects had to…

  17. Biomedically relevant chemical and physical properties of coal combustion products.

    PubMed Central

    Fisher, G L

    1983-01-01

    The evaluation of the potential public and occupational health hazards of developing and existing combustion processes requires a detailed understanding of the physical and chemical properties of effluents available for human and environmental exposures. These processes produce complex mixtures of gases and aerosols which may interact synergistically or antagonistically with biological systems. Because of the physicochemical complexity of the effluents, the biomedically relevant properties of these materials must be carefully assessed. Subsequent to release from combustion sources, environmental interactions further complicate assessment of the toxicity of combustion products. This report provides an overview of the biomedically relevant physical and chemical properties of coal fly ash. Coal fly ash is presented as a model complex mixture for health and safety evaluation of combustion processes. PMID:6337824

  18. Extent of structural asymmetry in homodimeric proteins: prevalence and relevance.

    PubMed

    Swapna, Lakshmipuram Seshadri; Srikeerthana, Kuchi; Srinivasan, Narayanaswamy

    2012-01-01

    Most homodimeric proteins have symmetric structure. Although symmetry is known to confer structural and functional advantage, asymmetric organization is also observed. Using a non-redundant dataset of 223 high-resolution crystal structures of biologically relevant homodimers, we address questions on the prevalence and significance of asymmetry. We used two measures to quantify global and interface asymmetry, and assess the correlation of several molecular and structural parameters with asymmetry. We have identified rare cases (11/223) of biologically relevant homodimers with pronounced global asymmetry. Asymmetry serves as a means to bring about 2:1 binding between the homodimer and another molecule; it also enables cellular signalling arising from asymmetric macromolecular ligands such as DNA. Analysis of these cases reveals two possible mechanisms by which possible infinite array formation is prevented. In case of homodimers associating via non-topologically equivalent surfaces in their tertiary structures, ligand-dependent mechanisms are used. For stable dimers binding via large surfaces, ligand-dependent structural change regulates polymerisation/depolymerisation; for unstable dimers binding via smaller surfaces that are not evolutionarily well conserved, dimerisation occurs only in the presence of the ligand. In case of homodimers associating via interaction surfaces with parts of the surfaces topologically equivalent in the tertiary structures, steric hindrance serves as the preventive mechanism of infinite array. We also find that homodimers exhibiting grossly symmetric organization rarely exhibit either perfect local symmetry or high local asymmetry. Binding of small ligands at the interface does not cause any significant variation in interface asymmetry. However, identification of biologically relevant interface asymmetry in grossly symmetric homodimers is confounded by the presence of similar small magnitude changes caused due to artefacts of

  19. How is physiology relevant to behavior analysis?

    PubMed Central

    Reese, Hayne W.

    1996-01-01

    Physiology is an important biological science; but behavior analysis is not a biological science, and behavior analysts can safely ignore biological processes. However, ignoring products of biological processes might be a serious mistake. The important products include behavior, instinctive drift, behavior potentials, hunger, and many developmental milestones and events. Physiology deals with the sources of such products; behavior analysis can deal with how the products affect behavior, which can be understood without understanding their sources. PMID:22478240

  20. Performance Boosting Additive

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Mainstream Engineering Corporation was awarded Phase I and Phase II contracts from Goddard Space Flight Center's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program in early 1990. With support from the SBIR program, Mainstream Engineering Corporation has developed a unique low cost additive, QwikBoost (TM), that increases the performance of air conditioners, heat pumps, refrigerators, and freezers. Because of the energy and environmental benefits of QwikBoost, Mainstream received the Tibbetts Award at a White House Ceremony on October 16, 1997. QwikBoost was introduced at the 1998 International Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Exposition. QwikBoost is packaged in a handy 3-ounce can (pressurized with R-134a) and will be available for automotive air conditioning systems in summer 1998.

  1. Sewage sludge additive

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kalvinskas, J. J.; Mueller, W. A.; Ingham, J. D. (Inventor)

    1980-01-01

    The additive is for a raw sewage treatment process of the type where settling tanks are used for the purpose of permitting the suspended matter in the raw sewage to be settled as well as to permit adsorption of the dissolved contaminants in the water of the sewage. The sludge, which settles down to the bottom of the settling tank is extracted, pyrolyzed and activated to form activated carbon and ash which is mixed with the sewage prior to its introduction into the settling tank. The sludge does not provide all of the activated carbon and ash required for adequate treatment of the raw sewage. It is necessary to add carbon to the process and instead of expensive commercial carbon, coal is used to provide the carbon supplement.

  2. Perspectives on Additive Manufacturing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bourell, David L.

    2016-07-01

    Additive manufacturing (AM) has skyrocketed in visibility commercially and in the public sector. This article describes the development of this field from early layered manufacturing approaches of photosculpture, topography, and material deposition. Certain precursors to modern AM processes are also briefly described. The growth of the field over the last 30 years is presented. Included is the standard delineation of AM technologies into seven broad categories. The economics of AM part generation is considered, and the impacts of the economics on application sectors are described. On the basis of current trends, the future outlook will include a convergence of AM fabricators, mass-produced AM fabricators, enabling of topology optimization designs, and specialization in the AM legal arena. Long-term developments with huge impact are organ printing and volume-based printing.

  3. New addition curing polyimides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frimer, Aryeh A.; Cavano, Paul

    1991-01-01

    In an attempt to improve the thermal-oxidative stability (TOS) of PMR-type polymers, the use of 1,4-phenylenebis (phenylmaleic anhydride) PPMA, was evaluated. Two series of nadic end-capped addition curing polyimides were prepared by imidizing PPMA with either 4,4'-methylene dianiline or p-phenylenediamine. The first resulted in improved solubility and increased resin flow while the latter yielded a compression molded neat resin sample with a T(sub g) of 408 C, close to 70 C higher than PME-15. The performance of these materials in long term weight loss studies was below that of PMR-15, independent of post-cure conditions. These results can be rationalized in terms of the thermal lability of the pendant phenyl groups and the incomplete imidization of the sterically congested PPMA. The preparation of model compounds as well as future research directions are discussed.

  4. Relevance of postprandial lipemia in metabolic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Rios, Antonio; Delgado-Lista, Javier; Perez-Martinez, Pablo; Delgado-Casado, Nieves; Perez-Jimenez, Francisco; Lopez-Miranda, Jose

    2013-11-01

    Metabolic Syndrome (MetS) is a complex disorder defined by the aggregation of interconnected cardiometabolic risk factors which increase the risk of diabetes mellitus type 2 and cardiovascular disease (CVD). MetS is currently a matter of concern and it will continue to be in the future, since there is likely to be a dramatic increase in its prevalence, and subjects with MetS will have an increased risk of mortality, mainly through CVD. Moreover, the implications on the global health burden and the worldwide epidemic of this complex disorder will impact greatly on socioeconomic cost. MetS is therefore a matter of serious concern and we need to understand its etiology in order to improve strategies of treatment and prevention. In this regard, postprandial lipemia has increased in importance over the last few years as it has been demonstrated to influence the development of atherosclerosis. In addition, in modern times, fasting is not the typical physiological state of humans; in fact, they spend most of the time in the postprandial state. However, although it is obvious that postprandial lipemia is present in conditions of obesity, little is known about the relevance of postprandial lipemia in MetS. In the current review, we will explore some aspects of postprandial lipemia which could be of interest for understanding the pathogenesis of this complex disorder and which may help us advance towards more personalized nutrition. PMID:24168444

  5. [On the forensic relevance of orphan diseases].

    PubMed

    Ondruschka, Benjamin; Schneider, Eckhardt; Hädrich, Carsten; Dreßler, Jan; Bayer, Ronny

    2015-01-01

    A 40-year-old woman died shortly after complaining of non-specific symptoms after a pharmacist had accidentally given her the wrong medication. The woman's partner was not familiar with her medical history and the medical file had to be obtained from the family doctor. Autopsy findings and histological examination confirmed the clinically diagnosed autoimmune polyglandular syndrome without a tangible cause of death. Poisoning could not be demonstrated and no relation between the dosage error and death could be established. Laboratory tests revealed diabetic coma with ketoacidosis as the cause of death, which was probably caused by a prolonged lack of insulin administration. In addition to the clarification of legal issues, the complete post-mortem examination of orphan diseases is also relevant for achieving a better understanding of differential diagnostic aspects and complex pathophysiological contexts. Moreover, the genetic background often underlying such diseases should be a reason to inform the family of the deceased about the autopsy results. Only then can secondary preventive measures be taken in time. PMID:26548033

  6. Relevance of the Axis Spermidine/eIF5A for Plant Growth and Development

    PubMed Central

    Belda-Palazón, Borja; Almendáriz, Carla; Martí, Esmeralda; Carbonell, Juan; Ferrando, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    One key role of the essential polyamine spermidine in eukaryotes is to provide the 4-aminobutyl moiety group destined to the post-translational modification of a lysine in the highly conserved translation factor eIF5A. This modification is catalyzed by two sequential enzymatic steps leading to the activation of eIF5A by the conversion of one conserved lysine to the unusual amino acid hypusine. The active translation factor facilitates the sequence-specific translation of polyproline sequences that otherwise cause ribosome stalling. In spite of the well-characterized involvement of active eIF5A in the translation of proline repeat-rich proteins, its biological role has been recently elucidated only in mammals, and it is poorly described at the functional level in plants. Here we describe the alterations in plant growth and development caused by RNAi-mediated conditional genetic inactivation of the hypusination pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana by knocking-down the enzyme deoxyhypusine synthase. We have uncovered that spermidine-mediated activation of eIF5A by hypusination is involved in several aspects of plant biology such as the control of flowering time, the aerial and root architecture, and root hair growth. In addition this pathway is required for adaptation to challenging growth conditions such as high salt and high glucose medium and to elevated concentrations of the plant hormone ABA. We have also performed a bioinformatic analysis of polyproline-rich containing proteins as putative eIF5A targets to uncover their organization in clusters of protein networks to find molecular culprits for the disclosed phenotypes. This study represents a first attempt to provide a holistic view of the biological relevance of the spermidine-dependent hypusination pathway for plant growth and development. PMID:26973686

  7. The relevance of task-irrelevant sounds: hemispheric lateralization and interactions with task-relevant streams

    PubMed Central

    Amaral, Ana A.; Langers, Dave R. M.

    2013-01-01

    The effect of unattended task-irrelevant auditory stimuli in the context of an auditory task is not well understood. Using human functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) we compared blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signal changes resulting from monotic task-irrelevant stimulation, monotic task-relevant stimulation and dichotic stimulation with an attended task-relevant stream to one ear and an unattended task-irrelevant stream to the other ear simultaneously. We found strong bilateral BOLD signal changes in the auditory cortex (AC) resulting from monotic stimulation in a passive listening condition. Consistent with previous work, these responses were largest on the side contralateral to stimulation. AC responses to the unattended (task-irrelevant) sounds were preferentially contralateral and strongest for the most difficult condition. Stronger bilateral AC responses occurred during monotic passive-listening than to an unattended stream presented in a dichotic condition, with attention focused on one ear. Additionally, the visual cortex showed negative responses compared to the baseline in all stimulus conditions including passive listening. Our results suggest that during dichotic listening, with attention focused on one ear, (1) the contralateral and the ipsilateral auditory pathways are suppressively interacting; and (2) cross-modal inhibition occurs during purely acoustic stimulation. These findings support the existence of response suppressions within and between modalities in the presence of competing interfering stimuli. PMID:24409115

  8. Conditions for the relevance of infant research to clinical psychoanalysis.

    PubMed

    Fajardo, B

    1993-10-01

    There is increased pluralism within psychoanalysis today, and the practice of psychoanalysis rests on many different theories and distinctly different epistemologic perspectives about the nature of the truth, the position of the observer-analyst in the process, and the phenomena to be observed. The relevance of developmental observation research to clinical psychoanalysis will vary with the epistemological perspective of the practitioner, and to be relevant the perspective of the researcher must 'match' that of the clinician. Additionally, its relevance is conditioned by what is considered 'empirical' data, i.e. whether the data are defined behaviourally or by empathic judgements of an observer. Three broad categories of psychoanalytic perspectives are discussed: empirical-natural science, hermeneutic-empirical, and hermeneutic-constructivist. A patient in analysis is described, with details of two sessions. Three imaginary consultants, each representing one of the major epistemological clinical perspectives, comment on the material to demonstrate the relationship among technique, epistemology, and the ways infants and developmental observation research may be relevant (or not relevant). PMID:8307704

  9. Computational approaches and metrics required for formulating biologically realistic nanomaterial pharmacokinetic models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riviere, Jim E.; Scoglio, Caterina; Sahneh, Faryad D.; Monteiro-Riviere, Nancy A.

    2013-01-01

    The field of nanomaterial pharmacokinetics is in its infancy, with major advances largely restricted by a lack of biologically relevant metrics, fundamental differences between particles and small molecules of organic chemicals and drugs relative to biological processes involved in disposition, a scarcity of sufficiently rich and characterized in vivo data and a lack of computational approaches to integrating nanomaterial properties to biological endpoints. A central concept that links nanomaterial properties to biological disposition, in addition to their colloidal properties, is the tendency to form a biocorona which modulates biological interactions including cellular uptake and biodistribution. Pharmacokinetic models must take this crucial process into consideration to accurately predict in vivo disposition, especially when extrapolating from laboratory animals to humans since allometric principles may not be applicable. The dynamics of corona formation, which modulates biological interactions including cellular uptake and biodistribution, is thereby a crucial process involved in the rate and extent of biodisposition. The challenge will be to develop a quantitative metric that characterizes a nanoparticle's surface adsorption forces that are important for predicting biocorona dynamics. These types of integrative quantitative approaches discussed in this paper for the dynamics of corona formation must be developed before realistic engineered nanomaterial risk assessment can be accomplished.

  10. Systems Biology Approaches for Host–Fungal Interactions: An Expanding Multi-Omics Frontier

    PubMed Central

    Culibrk, Luka; Croft, Carys A.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Opportunistic fungal infections are an increasing threat for global health, and for immunocompromised patients in particular. These infections are characterized by interaction between fungal pathogen and host cells. The exact mechanisms and the attendant variability in host and fungal pathogen interaction remain to be fully elucidated. The field of systems biology aims to characterize a biological system, and utilize this knowledge to predict the system's response to stimuli such as fungal exposures. A multi-omics approach, for example, combining data from genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, would allow a more comprehensive and pan-optic “two systems” biology of both the host and the fungal pathogen. In this review and literature analysis, we present highly specialized and nascent methods for analysis of multiple -omes of biological systems, in addition to emerging single-molecule visualization techniques that may assist in determining biological relevance of multi-omics data. We provide an overview of computational methods for modeling of gene regulatory networks, including some that have been applied towards the study of an interacting host and pathogen. In sum, comprehensive characterizations of host–fungal pathogen systems are now possible, and utilization of these cutting-edge multi-omics strategies may yield advances in better understanding of both host biology and fungal pathogens at a systems scale. PMID:26885725

  11. Connecting biology and organic chemistry introductory laboratory courses through a collaborative research project.

    PubMed

    Boltax, Ariana L; Armanious, Stephanie; Kosinski-Collins, Melissa S; Pontrello, Jason K

    2015-01-01

    Modern research often requires collaboration of experts in fields, such as math, chemistry, biology, physics, and computer science to develop unique solutions to common problems. Traditional introductory undergraduate laboratory curricula in the sciences often do not emphasize connections possible between the various disciplines. We designed an interdisciplinary, medically relevant, project intended to help students see connections between chemistry and biology. Second term organic chemistry laboratory students designed and synthesized potential polymer inhibitors or inducers of polyglutamine protein aggregation. The use of novel target compounds added the uncertainty of scientific research to the project. Biology laboratory students then tested the novel potential pharmaceuticals in Huntington's disease model assays, using in vitro polyglutamine peptide aggregation and in vivo lethality studies in Drosophila. Students read articles from the primary literature describing the system from both chemical and biological perspectives. Assessment revealed that students emerged from both courses with a deeper understanding of the interdisciplinary nature of biology and chemistry and a heightened interest in basic research. The design of this collaborative project for introductory biology and organic chemistry labs demonstrated how the local interests and expertise at a university can be drawn from to create an effective way to integrate these introductory courses. Rather than simply presenting a series of experiments to be replicated, we hope that our efforts will inspire other scientists to think about how some aspect of authentic work can be brought into their own courses, and we also welcome additional collaborations to extend the scope of the scientific exploration. PMID:26148149

  12. A Knowledge Base for Teaching Biology Situated in the Context of Genetic Testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Zande, Paul; Waarlo, Arend Jan; Brekelmans, Mieke; Akkerman, Sanne F.; Vermunt, Jan D.

    2011-10-01

    Recent developments in the field of genomics will impact the daily practice of biology teachers who teach genetics in secondary education. This study reports on the first results of a research project aimed at enhancing biology teacher knowledge for teaching genetics in the context of genetic testing. The increasing body of scientific knowledge concerning genetic testing and the related consequences for decision-making indicate the societal relevance of such a situated learning approach. What content knowledge do biology teachers need for teaching genetics in the personal health context of genetic testing? This study describes the required content knowledge by exploring the educational practice and clinical genetic practices. Nine experienced teachers and 12 respondents representing the clinical genetic practices (clients, medical professionals, and medical ethicists) were interviewed about the biological concepts and ethical, legal, and social aspects (ELSA) of testing they considered relevant to empowering students as future health care clients. The ELSA suggested by the respondents were complemented by suggestions found in the literature on genetic counselling. The findings revealed that the required teacher knowledge consists of multiple layers that are embedded in specific genetic test situations: on the one hand, the knowledge of concepts represented by the curricular framework and some additional concepts (e.g. multifactorial and polygenic disorder) and, on the other hand, more knowledge of ELSA and generic characteristics of genetic test practice (uncertainty, complexity, probability, and morality). Suggestions regarding how to translate these characteristics, concepts, and ELSA into context-based genetics education are discussed.

  13. System biology of gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Baitaluk, Michael

    2009-01-01

    A famous joke story that exhibits the traditionally awkward alliance between theory and experiment and showing the differences between experimental biologists and theoretical modelers is when a University sends a biologist, a mathematician, a physicist, and a computer scientist to a walking trip in an attempt to stimulate interdisciplinary research. During a break, they watch a cow in a field nearby and the leader of the group asks, "I wonder how one could decide on the size of a cow?" Since a cow is a biological object, the biologist responded first: "I have seen many cows in this area and know it is a big cow." The mathematician argued, "The true volume is determined by integrating the mathematical function that describes the outer surface of the cow's body." The physicist suggested: "Let's assume the cow is a sphere...." Finally the computer scientist became nervous and said that he didn't bring his computer because there is no Internet connection up there on the hill. In this humorous but explanatory story suggestions proposed by theorists can be taken to reflect the view of many experimental biologists that computer scientists and theorists are too far removed from biological reality and therefore their theories and approaches are not of much immediate usefulness. Conversely, the statement of the biologist mirrors the view of many traditional theoretical and computational scientists that biological experiments are for the most part simply descriptive, lack rigor, and that much of the resulting biological data are of questionable functional relevance. One of the goals of current biology as a multidisciplinary science is to bring people from different scientific areas together on the same "hill" and teach them to speak the same "language." In fact, of course, when presenting their data, most experimentalist biologists do provide an interpretation and explanation for the results, and many theorists/computer scientists aim to answer (or at least to fully describe

  14. Microbial reduction of Fe(III) under alkaline conditions relevant to geological disposal.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Adam J; Morris, Katherine; Shaw, Sam; Byrne, James M; Boothman, Christopher; Lloyd, Jonathan R

    2013-06-01

    To determine whether biologically mediated Fe(III) reduction is possible under alkaline conditions in systems of relevance to geological disposal of radioactive wastes, a series of microcosm experiments was set up using hyperalkaline sediments (pH ~11.8) surrounding a legacy lime working site in Buxton, United Kingdom. The microcosms were incubated for 28 days and held at pH 10. There was clear evidence for anoxic microbial activity, with consumption of lactate (added as an electron donor) concomitant with the reduction of Fe(III) as ferrihydrite (added as the electron acceptor). The products of microbial Fe(III) reduction were black and magnetic, and a range of analyses, including X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray absorption spectroscopy, and X-ray magnetic circular dichroism confirmed the extensive formation of biomagnetite in this system. The addition of soluble exogenous and endogenous electron shuttles such as the humic analogue anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonate and riboflavin increased both the initial rate and the final extent of Fe(III) reduction in comparison to the nonamended experiments. In addition, a soluble humic acid (Aldrich) also increased both the rate and the extent of Fe(III) reduction. These results show that microbial Fe(III) reduction can occur in conditions relevant to a geological disposal facility containing cement-based wasteforms that has evolved into a high pH environment over prolonged periods of time (>100,000 years). The potential impact of such processes on the biogeochemistry of a geological disposal facility is discussed, including possible coupling to the redox conditions and solubility of key radionuclides. PMID:23524677

  15. Microbial Reduction of Fe(III) under Alkaline Conditions Relevant to Geological Disposal

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Adam J.; Morris, Katherine; Shaw, Sam; Byrne, James M.; Boothman, Christopher

    2013-01-01

    To determine whether biologically mediated Fe(III) reduction is possible under alkaline conditions in systems of relevance to geological disposal of radioactive wastes, a series of microcosm experiments was set up using hyperalkaline sediments (pH ∼11.8) surrounding a legacy lime working site in Buxton, United Kingdom. The microcosms were incubated for 28 days and held at pH 10. There was clear evidence for anoxic microbial activity, with consumption of lactate (added as an electron donor) concomitant with the reduction of Fe(III) as ferrihydrite (added as the electron acceptor). The products of microbial Fe(III) reduction were black and magnetic, and a range of analyses, including X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray absorption spectroscopy, and X-ray magnetic circular dichroism confirmed the extensive formation of biomagnetite in this system. The addition of soluble exogenous and endogenous electron shuttles such as the humic analogue anthraquinone-2,6-disulfonate and riboflavin increased both the initial rate and the final extent of Fe(III) reduction in comparison to the nonamended experiments. In addition, a soluble humic acid (Aldrich) also increased both the rate and the extent of Fe(III) reduction. These results show that microbial Fe(III) reduction can occur in conditions relevant to a geological disposal facility containing cement-based wasteforms that has evolved into a high pH environment over prolonged periods of time (>100,000 years). The potential impact of such processes on the biogeochemistry of a geological disposal facility is discussed, including possible coupling to the redox conditions and solubility of key radionuclides. PMID:23524677

  16. [New challenges in the biological weapons convention].

    PubMed

    Sissonen, Susanna; Raijas, Tiina; Haikala, Olli; Hietala, Heikki; Virri, Markku; Nikkari, Simo

    2012-01-01

    Microbes and their toxins are biological weapons that can cause disease in humans, animals or plants, and which can be used with hostile intent in warfare and terrorism. Biological agents can be used as weapons of mass destruction and therefore, immense human and social and major economical damage can be caused. Rapid development of life sciences and technologies during the recent decades has posed new challenges to the Biological Weapons Convention. The Convention states that the States Parties to the BWC strive to ensure that the Convention remains relevant and effective, despite changes in science, technology or politics. PMID:22428382

  17. Planetary Protection: Two Relevant Terrestrial Examples

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chyba, C.

    2002-09-01

    Concerns about potential pathogens in returned samples from Mars ("Mars Sample Return: Issues and Recommendations", National Research Council, 1997) or planetary satellites ("Evaluating the Biological Potential in Samples Returned from Planetary Satellites and Small Solar System Bodies", National Research Council, 1998) focus on two potential types of pathogenesis, toxic and infectious. The National Research Council reports cited above state that the chances of extraterrestrial organisms proving either toxic or infectious to humans are extremely low, but cannot be entirely ruled out. Here I discuss recently discovered terrestrial examples relevant to each possibility, in order to make these concerns concrete. The first example concerns the production of hepatotoxins (toxins affecting the liver) and neurotoxins by cyanobacteria in glacial lakes on alpine pastures in Switzerland. In this example, mat-forming benthic cyanobacteria are implicated in a hundred cattle poisonings that have been reported from alpine pasteurs in southeastern Switzerland over the past twenty-five years (e.g. K. Mez et al, Hydrobiologia 368, 1-15 (1998)). It is unlikely that these cyanobacteria evolved the toxins in response to dairy cows; rather the susceptibility of cattle to these toxins seems simply to be an unfortunate coincidence of a toxin working across a large evolutionary distance. The second example concerns the recent demonstration that the decimation of shallow-water Caribbean elkhorn coral is due to infection by a common fecal enterobacterium associated with the human gut (K. L. Patterson et al., PNAS 99, 8725-8730 (2002)). The bacterium, Serratia marcenscens, is also a free-living microbe in water and soil, as well as an opportunistic pathogen in a variety of animal species. The distance between humans and corals emphasizes the possibility that certain organisms may prove pathogenic across a wide evolutionary divide. Of course, in neither of these cases are the evolutionary

  18. Flower biology and biologically-based integrated fire blight management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fire blight infection is generally initiated in flowers, and thus, research has been directed to the biology and microbial ecology of flowers as related to this disease. In addition to investigations involving apple and pear flowers, Manchurian crab apple (Malus manchurica), closely related to appl...

  19. Development of a new microtiter plate format for clinically relevant assays.

    PubMed

    Piletska, Elena V; Piletsky, Stanislav S; Whitcombe, Michael J; Chianella, Iva; Piletsky, Sergey A

    2012-02-21

    A new format for the microtiter plate-based assays was proposed. The novelty involves the use of disk-shaped inserts for immobilization of biological and chemical reagents. The internal opening of the disks allows measurements of the reactions by standard microtiter plate readers without any additional steps involving liquid handling. Ideally the plate end-users just have to add the sample and take the measurement without any need of multiple reagent additions or transfer of the liquid to a different plate. The novel assay format also allows handling of reagents which are not soluble in an aqueous environment. As a proof of concept we describe here several model reactions which are compatible with microtiter plate format, such as monitoring enzymatic reactions catalyzed by glucose oxidase (GOx) and urease, measurements of proteins by BCA assay, analysis of pH, and concentration of antioxidants. The "mix and match" approach in the disk-shape format allows multiplexing and could be particularly useful for high throughput screening. One of the potential application areas for this novel assay format could be in a multianalyte system for measurement of clinically relevant analytes in primary care. PMID:22264028

  20. A new take on comparative immunology; Relevance to immunotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ena; Albini, Adriana; Stroncek, David F; Marincola, Francesco M

    2012-01-01

    Summary It is becoming increasingly recognized that experimental animal models, while useful to address monothematic biological questions, bear unpredictable relevance to human disease. Several reasons have been proposed. However, the uncontrollable nature of human genetics and the heterogeneity of disease that with difficulty can be replicated experimentally play a leading role. Comparative immunology is a term that generally refers to the analysis of shared or diverging facets of immunology among species; these comparisons are carried according to the principle that evolutionarily conserved themes outline biologic functions universally relevant for survival. We propose that a similar strategy could be applied searching for themes shared by distinct immune pathologies within our own species. Identification of common patterns may outline pathways necessary for a particular determinism to occur such as tissue-specific rejection or tolerance. This approach is founded on the unproven but sensible presumption that Nature does not require an infinite plethora of redundant mechanisms to reach its purposes. Thus, immune pathologies must follow, at least in part, common means that determine their onset and maintenance. Commonalities among diseases can, in turn, be segregated from disease-specific patterns uncovering essential mechanisms that may represent universal targets for immunotherapy. PMID:20635956