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Sample records for affecting humans worldwide

  1. Human water consumption intensifies hydrological drought worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wada, Y.; Van Beek, L. P.; Wanders, N.; Bierkens, M. F.

    2012-12-01

    Over the past decades, human water consumption has more than doubled, and reduced streamflow over various regions of the world. However, it remains unclear to what degree human water consumption intensifies hydrological droughts, i.e. the occurrence of anomalously low streamflow. Here, we quantify over the period 1960-2010 the impact of human water consumption on the intensity and frequency of hydrological droughts worldwide. We simulated streamflow by the global hydrological and water resources model PCR-GLOBWB at a 0.5 degree spatial resolution, and reduced the amount of streamflow with different levels of human water consumption over the period 1960-2010. We applied the commonly used variable threshold level method to identify below-normal water availability as the onset of hydrological droughts. We then standardized the deficit volume dividing relative to the threshold level to express the intensity of drought conditions to normal streamflow conditions. The results show that human water consumption substantially reduced local and downstream streamflow in many regions of the world. This subsequently intensified hydrological droughts regionally by 10-500%. Irrigation is responsible for the intensification of hydrological droughts over western and central U.S., southern Europe, Asia, and southeastern Australia, whereas the impact of industrial and households' consumption on the intensification is considerably larger over eastern U.S., and western and central Europe. The results also show that drought frequency increased by more than 27% compared to pristine or natural condition as a result of human water consumption. The intensification of drought frequency is most severe over Asia, but also substantial over North America and Europe. Importantly, global population under severe hydrological droughts considerably increased from 0.7 billion in 1960 to 2.2 billion in 2010 due to rapid population growth. As a limited validation exercise, we compared simulated deficit

  2. Satellite nighttime lights reveal increasing human exposure to floods worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ceola, Serena; Laio, Francesco; Montanari, Alberto

    2015-04-01

    River floods are the first cause of human fatalities and economic losses among natural disasters. Floods claim thousands of lives every year, but effective and high-resolution methods to provide a spatially and temporally detailed analysis of the human exposure to floods at the global scale are still lacking. To this aim, we use satellite nightlight data to prove that nocturnal lights close to rivers are consistently related to flood damages. First, we analyse the temporal evolution of nightlights along the river network all over the world from 1992 to 2012 and obtain a global map of nightlight trends, which we associate with increasing human exposure to floods, at 1 km2 resolution. Then, we correlate global data of economic losses caused by flooding events with nighttime lights and find that increasing nightlights are associated to flood damage intensification. Our results show an enhancement of exposure to floods worldwide, particularly in Africa and Asia. Therefore our analysis argues for the development of valuable flood preparedness and mitigation strategies, also associated to the projected effects of climate change on flood-related losses.

  3. Food Affects Human Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kolata, Gina

    1982-01-01

    A conference on whether food and nutrients affect human behavior was held on November 9, 1982 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Various research studies on this topic are reviewed, including the effects of food on brain biochemistry (particularly sleep) and effects of tryptophane as a pain reducer. (JN)

  4. Tick-borne infections in human and animal population worldwide

    PubMed Central

    Brites-Neto, José; Duarte, Keila Maria Roncato; Martins, Thiago Fernandes

    2015-01-01

    The abundance and activity of ectoparasites and its hosts are affected by various abiotic factors, such as climate and other organisms (predators, pathogens and competitors) presenting thus multiples forms of association (obligate to facultative, permanent to intermittent and superficial to subcutaneous) developed during long co-evolving processes. Ticks are ectoparasites widespread globally and its eco epidemiology are closely related to the environmental conditions. They are obligatory hematophagous ectoparasites and responsible as vectors or reservoirs at the transmission of pathogenic fungi, protozoa, viruses, rickettsia and others bacteria during their feeding process on the hosts. Ticks constitute the second vector group that transmit the major number of pathogens to humans and play a role primary for animals in the process of diseases transmission. Many studies on bioecology of ticks, considering the information related to their population dynamics, to the host and the environment, comes possible the application and efficiency of tick control measures in the prevention programs of vector-borne diseases. In this review were considered some taxonomic, morphological, epidemiological and clinical fundamental aspects related to the tick-borne infections that affect human and animal populations. PMID:27047089

  5. Genomic Patterns of Homozygosity in Worldwide Human Populations

    PubMed Central

    Pemberton, Trevor J.; Absher, Devin; Feldman, Marcus W.; Myers, Richard M.; Rosenberg, Noah A.; Li, Jun Z.

    2012-01-01

    Genome-wide patterns of homozygosity runs and their variation across individuals provide a valuable and often untapped resource for studying human genetic diversity and evolutionary history. Using genotype data at 577,489 autosomal SNPs, we employed a likelihood-based approach to identify runs of homozygosity (ROH) in 1,839 individuals representing 64 worldwide populations, classifying them by length into three classes—short, intermediate, and long—with a model-based clustering algorithm. For each class, the number and total length of ROH per individual show considerable variation across individuals and populations. The total lengths of short and intermediate ROH per individual increase with the distance of a population from East Africa, in agreement with similar patterns previously observed for locus-wise homozygosity and linkage disequilibrium. By contrast, total lengths of long ROH show large interindividual variations that probably reflect recent inbreeding patterns, with higher values occurring more often in populations with known high frequencies of consanguineous unions. Across the genome, distributions of ROH are not uniform, and they have distinctive continental patterns. ROH frequencies across the genome are correlated with local genomic variables such as recombination rate, as well as with signals of recent positive selection. In addition, long ROH are more frequent in genomic regions harboring genes associated with autosomal-dominant diseases than in regions not implicated in Mendelian diseases. These results provide insight into the way in which homozygosity patterns are produced, and they generate baseline homozygosity patterns that can be used to aid homozygosity mapping of genes associated with recessive diseases. PMID:22883143

  6. Imported Human Rabies Cases Worldwide, 1990–2012

    PubMed Central

    Carrara, Philippe; Parola, Phillipe; Brouqui, Phillipe; Gautret, Philippe

    2013-01-01

    Sixty cases of human rabies in international travelers were reviewed from 1990–2012. A significant proportion of the cases were observed in migrants or their descendants when emigrating from their country of origin or after a trip to visit friends and relatives or for other reasons (43.3%). The cases were not necessarily associated with long-term travel or expatriation to endemic countries; moreover, cases were observed in travelers after short trips of two weeks or less. A predominance of male patients was observed (75.0%). The proportion of children was low (11.7%). Cases from India and Philippines were frequent (16 cases/60). In a significant proportion of cases (51.1%), diagnosis was challenging, with multiple missed diagnoses and transfers from ward to ward before the final diagnosis of rabies. Among the 28 patients whose confirmed diagnosis was obtained ante-mortem, the mean time between hospitalization and diagnosis was 7.7 days (median time: 6.0 days, range 2–30) including four cases with a diagnosis delayed by 15 or more days. In five cases, a patient traveled through one or more countries before ultimately being hospitalized. Three factors played a role in delaying the diagnosis of rabies in a number of cases: (i) a low index of suspicion for rabies in countries where the disease has been eradicated for a long time or is now rare, (ii) a negative history of animal bites or exposure to rabies, and (iii) atypical clinical presentation of the disease. Clinical symptomatology of rabies is complex and commonly confuses physicians. Furthermore, failure in diagnosing imported cases in more developed countries is most likely related to the lack of medical familiarity with even the typical clinical features of the disease. PMID:23658853

  7. CLIMATE CHANGE AND HUMAN HEALTH IN VULNERABLE REGIONS WORLD-WIDE

    EPA Science Inventory

    NCEA's Global Change Research Program has partnered with the World Health Organization to host workshops on the impacts of climate change on human health across vulnerable regions worldwide, including the Central Asian Republics (Uzebekistan), China, the middle east (Jordan), the...

  8. Human papillomavirus is a necessary cause of invasive cervical cancer worldwide.

    PubMed

    Walboomers, J M; Jacobs, M V; Manos, M M; Bosch, F X; Kummer, J A; Shah, K V; Snijders, P J; Peto, J; Meijer, C J; Muñoz, N

    1999-09-01

    A recent report that 93 per cent of invasive cervical cancers worldwide contain human papillomavirus (HPV) may be an underestimate, due to sample inadequacy or integration events affecting the HPV L1 gene, which is the target of the polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based test which was used. The formerly HPV-negative cases from this study have therefore been reanalyzed for HPV serum antibodies and HPV DNA. Serology for HPV 16 VLPs, E6, and E7 antibodies was performed on 49 of the 66 cases which were HPV-negative and a sample of 48 of the 866 cases which were HPV-positive in the original study. Moreover, 55 of the 66 formerly HPV-negative biopsies were also reanalyzed by a sandwich procedure in which the outer sections in a series of sections are used for histological review, while the inner sections are assayed by three different HPV PCR assays targeting different open reading frames (ORFs). No significant difference was found in serology for HPV 16 proteins between the cases that were originally HPV PCR-negative and -positive. Type-specific E7 PCR for 14 high-risk HPV types detected HPV DNA in 38 (69 per cent) of the 55 originally HPV-negative and amplifiable specimens. The HPV types detected were 16, 18, 31, 33, 39, 45, 52, and 58. Two (4 per cent) additional cases were only HPV DNA-positive by E1 and/or L1 consensus PCR. Histological analysis of the 55 specimens revealed that 21 were qualitatively inadequate. Only two of the 34 adequate samples were HPV-negative on all PCR tests, as against 13 of the 21 that were inadequate ( p< 0.001). Combining the data from this and the previous study and excluding inadequate specimens, the worldwide HPV prevalence in cervical carcinomas is 99.7 per cent. The presence of HPV in virtually all cervical cancers implies the highest worldwide attributable fraction so far reported for a specific cause of any major human cancer. The extreme rarity of HPV-negative cancers reinforces the rationale for HPV testing in addition to, or

  9. HRD Trends Worldwide: Shared Solutions To Compete in a Global Economy. Improving Human Performance Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phillips, Jack J.

    This book, which is intended for individuals involved in developing, delivering, and supporting human resource development (HRD) programs, discusses worldwide HRD trends that were identified in a study of the HRD practices in 35 countries. Chapter 1 discusses the importance of the HRD trends identified and explains how they were identified.…

  10. Zoonotic helminths affecting the human eye

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Nowaday, zoonoses are an important cause of human parasitic diseases worldwide and a major threat to the socio-economic development, mainly in developing countries. Importantly, zoonotic helminths that affect human eyes (HIE) may cause blindness with severe socio-economic consequences to human communities. These infections include nematodes, cestodes and trematodes, which may be transmitted by vectors (dirofilariasis, onchocerciasis, thelaziasis), food consumption (sparganosis, trichinellosis) and those acquired indirectly from the environment (ascariasis, echinococcosis, fascioliasis). Adult and/or larval stages of HIE may localize into human ocular tissues externally (i.e., lachrymal glands, eyelids, conjunctival sacs) or into the ocular globe (i.e., intravitreous retina, anterior and or posterior chamber) causing symptoms due to the parasitic localization in the eyes or to the immune reaction they elicit in the host. Unfortunately, data on HIE are scant and mostly limited to case reports from different countries. The biology and epidemiology of the most frequently reported HIE are discussed as well as clinical description of the diseases, diagnostic considerations and video clips on their presentation and surgical treatment. Homines amplius oculis, quam auribus credunt Seneca Ep 6,5 Men believe their eyes more than their ears PMID:21429191

  11. Scientific literature on infectious diseases affecting livestock animals, longitudinal worldwide bibliometric analysis.

    PubMed

    Ducrot, Christian; Gautret, Marjolaine; Pineau, Thierry; Jestin, André

    2016-01-01

    The objectives of this bibliometric analysis of the scientific literature were to describe the research subjects and the international collaborations in the field of research on infectious diseases in livestock animals including fishes and honeybees. It was based on articles published worldwide from 2006 through 2013. The source of data was the Web of Science, Core collection(®) and only papers fully written in English were considered. Queries were built that combined 130 descriptors related to animal species and 1213 descriptors related to diseases and pathogens. To refine and assess the accuracy of the extracted database, supplementary filters were applied to discard non-specific terms and neighbouring topics, and numerous tests were carried out on samples. For pathogens, annotation was done using a thematic terminology established to link each disease with its corresponding pathogen, which was in turn classified according to its family. A total of 62,754 articles were published in this field during this 8-year period. The average annual growth rate of the number of papers was 5%. This represents the reference data to which we compared the average annual growth rate of articles produced in each of the sub-categories that we defined. Thirty-seven percent of the papers were dedicated to ruminant diseases. Poultry, pigs and fishes were covered by respectively 21, 13 and 14% of the total. Thirty-seven percent of papers concerned bacteria, 33% viruses, 19% parasites, 2% prions, the remaining being multi-pathogens. Research on virology, especially on pigs and poultry, is increasing faster than the average. There also is increasing interest in monogastric species, fish and bees. The average annual growth rate for Asia was 10%, which is high compared to 3% for Europe and 2% for the Americas, indicating that Asia is currently playing a leading role in this field. There is a well established network of international collaborations. For 75% of the papers, the co

  12. A Quantitative Comparison of the Similarity between Genes and Geography in Worldwide Human Populations

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chaolong; Zöllner, Sebastian; Rosenberg, Noah A.

    2012-01-01

    Multivariate statistical techniques such as principal components analysis (PCA) and multidimensional scaling (MDS) have been widely used to summarize the structure of human genetic variation, often in easily visualized two-dimensional maps. Many recent studies have reported similarity between geographic maps of population locations and MDS or PCA maps of genetic variation inferred from single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). However, this similarity has been evident primarily in a qualitative sense; and, because different multivariate techniques and marker sets have been used in different studies, it has not been possible to formally compare genetic variation datasets in terms of their levels of similarity with geography. In this study, using genome-wide SNP data from 128 populations worldwide, we perform a systematic analysis to quantitatively evaluate the similarity of genes and geography in different geographic regions. For each of a series of regions, we apply a Procrustes analysis approach to find an optimal transformation that maximizes the similarity between PCA maps of genetic variation and geographic maps of population locations. We consider examples in Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, East Asia, and Central/South Asia, as well as in a worldwide sample, finding that significant similarity between genes and geography exists in general at different geographic levels. The similarity is highest in our examples for Asia and, once highly distinctive populations have been removed, Sub-Saharan Africa. Our results provide a quantitative assessment of the geographic structure of human genetic variation worldwide, supporting the view that geography plays a strong role in giving rise to human population structure. PMID:22927824

  13. A comparison of worldwide phonemic and genetic variation in human populations

    PubMed Central

    Creanza, Nicole; Ruhlen, Merritt; Pemberton, Trevor J.; Rosenberg, Noah A.; Feldman, Marcus W.; Ramachandran, Sohini

    2015-01-01

    Worldwide patterns of genetic variation are driven by human demographic history. Here, we test whether this demographic history has left similar signatures on phonemes—sound units that distinguish meaning between words in languages—to those it has left on genes. We analyze, jointly and in parallel, phoneme inventories from 2,082 worldwide languages and microsatellite polymorphisms from 246 worldwide populations. On a global scale, both genetic distance and phonemic distance between populations are significantly correlated with geographic distance. Geographically close language pairs share significantly more phonemes than distant language pairs, whether or not the languages are closely related. The regional geographic axes of greatest phonemic differentiation correspond to axes of genetic differentiation, suggesting that there is a relationship between human dispersal and linguistic variation. However, the geographic distribution of phoneme inventory sizes does not follow the predictions of a serial founder effect during human expansion out of Africa. Furthermore, although geographically isolated populations lose genetic diversity via genetic drift, phonemes are not subject to drift in the same way: within a given geographic radius, languages that are relatively isolated exhibit more variance in number of phonemes than languages with many neighbors. This finding suggests that relatively isolated languages are more susceptible to phonemic change than languages with many neighbors. Within a language family, phoneme evolution along genetic, geographic, or cognate-based linguistic trees predicts similar ancestral phoneme states to those predicted from ancient sources. More genetic sampling could further elucidate the relative roles of vertical and horizontal transmission in phoneme evolution. PMID:25605893

  14. A worldwide analysis of human exposure to floods by using satellite nighttime lights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ceola, Serena; Montanari, Alberto; Laio, Francesco

    2015-04-01

    The recent occurrence of flood events across the globe, which represent the first cause of economic losses and human fatalities among natural disasters, has highlighted the urgent need of mitigation strategies to reduce flood risk. To date, expeditious procedures for a worldwide detailed spatio-temporal identification of human exposure to floods are still incomplete. To this end, we propose the use of satellite images of nighttime lights to identify the areas across the globe most at risk for flood damages. Nightlights are indeed a widely used proxy for population density and economic activity. Worldwide nocturnal lights along the river network, available as yearly average values from 1992 to 2012 at 1 km2 resolution, are first analysed from a temporal perspective in order to estimate their temporal trends. Our results revealed that the temporal evolution of nightlights can be reasonably associated with the temporal pattern of human exposure to floods. Nightlights are then correlated with global data of economic losses caused by flooding events. Our outcomes showed that nocturnal lights close to rivers are consistently related to flood damages. In particular, we found that increasing nightlights are associated to flood damage intensification. Our analysis may thus provide valuable information for better understanding the interactions between hydrology and society and identifying priorities for flood risk management.

  15. The prion protein gene in humans revisited: lessons from a worldwide resequencing study.

    PubMed

    Soldevila, Marta; Andrés, Aida M; Ramírez-Soriano, Anna; Marquès-Bonet, Tomàs; Calafell, Francesc; Navarro, Arcadi; Bertranpetit, Jaume

    2006-02-01

    Ample evidence has accumulated showing that different coding variants of the PRNP gene confer differential susceptibility for prion diseases. Here we evaluate the patterns of nucleotide variation in PRNP exon 2, which includes all the protein-coding sequence, by resequencing a worldwide sample of 174 humans for 2378 bp. In line with previous studies, we found two main haplotypes differentiated by nonsynonymous substitution in codon 129. Our analyses reveal the worldwide pattern of variation at the PRNP gene to be inconsistent with neutral expectations, indicating instead an excess of low-frequency variants, a footprint of the action of either positive or purifying selection. A comparison of neutrality test statistics for PRNP with other human genes indicates that the signal of positive selection on PRNP is stronger than expected from a possible confounding genome-wide background signal of population expansion. Two main conclusions arise from our analysis. First, the existence of an ancient, stable, balanced polymorphism that has been claimed in a previous study and related to cannibalism can be rejected and is shown to be due to ascertainment bias. Second, our results are consistent with a complex history of selection including mainly positive selection, even if short local periods of balancing selection (Kuru-like episodes), or even a weak purifying selection model, are consistent with our data. PMID:16369046

  16. Effects of Upstream Human Changes on Nutrient Fluxes to Major Deltas World-Wide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Cappellen, P.; Dürr, H. H.; Maavara, T.

    2015-12-01

    Major deltas world-wide are connected to large river systems, and while they make up <1% of the shoreline, they are at the receiving end of 25-42% of all discharge, suspended sediment load and nutrient load. Thus, in addition to the pressure from human impact in the deltas, changes far upstream are tightly linked to effects downstream. The Global-NEWS approach has explored scenarios along storylines that influence future nutrient fluxes, and if highlighted for individual delta, reveals large differences in future change, with most of the influence being attributed to factors such as land use change or increased damming. Notably the latter factor has received recent attention with regards to nutrient fluxes, and phosphorus (P) in particular (Maavara et al. in review): the largest increases in P retention by reservoirs, between 2000 and 2030, are expected to occur in the Yangtze, Mekong, Amazon and Ganges-Brahmaputra river basins. Here, we discuss how Global-NEWS and other approaches assess these future changes in nutrient fluxes, and how the expected new boom in dam construction can influence these fluxes to deltas world-wide.

  17. Geographic population structure analysis of worldwide human populations infers their biogeographical origins.

    PubMed

    Elhaik, Eran; Tatarinova, Tatiana; Chebotarev, Dmitri; Piras, Ignazio S; Maria Calò, Carla; De Montis, Antonella; Atzori, Manuela; Marini, Monica; Tofanelli, Sergio; Francalacci, Paolo; Pagani, Luca; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Xue, Yali; Cucca, Francesco; Schurr, Theodore G; Gaieski, Jill B; Melendez, Carlalynne; Vilar, Miguel G; Owings, Amanda C; Gómez, Rocío; Fujita, Ricardo; Santos, Fabrício R; Comas, David; Balanovsky, Oleg; Balanovska, Elena; Zalloua, Pierre; Soodyall, Himla; Pitchappan, Ramasamy; Ganeshprasad, Arunkumar; Hammer, Michael; Matisoo-Smith, Lisa; Wells, R Spencer

    2014-01-01

    The search for a method that utilizes biological information to predict humans' place of origin has occupied scientists for millennia. Over the past four decades, scientists have employed genetic data in an effort to achieve this goal but with limited success. While biogeographical algorithms using next-generation sequencing data have achieved an accuracy of 700 km in Europe, they were inaccurate elsewhere. Here we describe the Geographic Population Structure (GPS) algorithm and demonstrate its accuracy with three data sets using 40,000-130,000 SNPs. GPS placed 83% of worldwide individuals in their country of origin. Applied to over 200 Sardinians villagers, GPS placed a quarter of them in their villages and most of the rest within 50 km of their villages. GPS's accuracy and power to infer the biogeography of worldwide individuals down to their country or, in some cases, village, of origin, underscores the promise of admixture-based methods for biogeography and has ramifications for genetic ancestry testing. PMID:24781250

  18. Estimation of damage and human losses due to earthquakes worldwide - QLARM strategy and experience

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trendafiloski, G.; Rosset, P.; Wyss, M.; Wiemer, S.; Bonjour, C.; Cua, G.

    2009-04-01

    Within the framework of the IMRPOVE project, we are constructing our second-generation loss estimation tool QLARM (earthQuake Loss Assessment for Response and Mitigation). At the same time, we are upgrading the input data to be used in real-time and scenario mode. The software and databases will be open to all scientific users. The estimates include: (1) total number of fatalities and injured, (2) casualties by settlement, (3) percent of buildings in five damage grades in each settlement, (4) a map showing mean damage by settlement, and (5) functionality of large medical facilities. We present here our strategy and progress so far in constructing and calibrating the new tool. The QLARM worldwide database of the elements-at-risk consists of point and discrete city models with the following parameters: (1) Soil amplification factors; (2) distribution of building stock and population into vulnerability classes of the European Macroseismic Scale (EMS-98); (3) most recent population numbers by settlement or district; (4) information regarding medical facilities where available. We calculate the seismic demand in terms of (a) macroseismic (seismic intensity) or (b) instrumental (PGA) parameters. Attenuation relationships predicting both parameters will be used for different regions worldwide, considering the tectonic regime and wave propagation characteristics. We estimate damage and losses using: (i) vulnerability models pertinent to EMS-98 vulnerability classes; (ii) building collapse rates pertinent to different regions worldwide; and, (iii) casualty matrices pertinent to EMS-98 vulnerability classes. We also provide approximate estimates for the functionality of large medical facilities considering their structural, non-structural damage and loss-of-function of the medical equipment and installations. We calibrate the QLARM database and the loss estimation tool using macroseismic observations and information regarding damage and human losses from past earthquakes

  19. Punctuated bursts in human male demography inferred from 1,244 worldwide Y-chromosome sequences.

    PubMed

    Poznik, G David; Xue, Yali; Mendez, Fernando L; Willems, Thomas F; Massaia, Andrea; Wilson Sayres, Melissa A; Ayub, Qasim; McCarthy, Shane A; Narechania, Apurva; Kashin, Seva; Chen, Yuan; Banerjee, Ruby; Rodriguez-Flores, Juan L; Cerezo, Maria; Shao, Haojing; Gymrek, Melissa; Malhotra, Ankit; Louzada, Sandra; Desalle, Rob; Ritchie, Graham R S; Cerveira, Eliza; Fitzgerald, Tomas W; Garrison, Erik; Marcketta, Anthony; Mittelman, David; Romanovitch, Mallory; Zhang, Chengsheng; Zheng-Bradley, Xiangqun; Abecasis, Gonçalo R; McCarroll, Steven A; Flicek, Paul; Underhill, Peter A; Coin, Lachlan; Zerbino, Daniel R; Yang, Fengtang; Lee, Charles; Clarke, Laura; Auton, Adam; Erlich, Yaniv; Handsaker, Robert E; Bustamante, Carlos D; Tyler-Smith, Chris

    2016-06-01

    We report the sequences of 1,244 human Y chromosomes randomly ascertained from 26 worldwide populations by the 1000 Genomes Project. We discovered more than 65,000 variants, including single-nucleotide variants, multiple-nucleotide variants, insertions and deletions, short tandem repeats, and copy number variants. Of these, copy number variants contribute the greatest predicted functional impact. We constructed a calibrated phylogenetic tree on the basis of binary single-nucleotide variants and projected the more complex variants onto it, estimating the number of mutations for each class. Our phylogeny shows bursts of extreme expansion in male numbers that have occurred independently among each of the five continental superpopulations examined, at times of known migrations and technological innovations. PMID:27111036

  20. National Incorporation of Global Human Rights: Worldwide Expansion of National Human Rights Institutions, 1966-2004

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koo, Jeong-Woo; Ramirez, Francisco O.

    2009-01-01

    Using an event history framework we analyze the adoption rate of national human rights institutions. Neo-realist perspective predicts adoption rates to be positively influenced by favorable national profiles that lower the costs and make it more reasonable to establish these institutions. From a world polity perspective adoption rates will be…

  1. In vitro growth inhibition by Hypericum extracts and isolated pure compounds of Paenibacillus larvae, a lethal disease affecting honeybees worldwide.

    PubMed

    Hernández-López, Javier; Crockett, Sara; Kunert, Olaf; Hammer, Elfe; Schuehly, Wolfgang; Bauer, Rudolf; Crailsheim, Karl; Riessberger-Gallé, Ulrike

    2014-05-01

    The in vitro inhibitory potential of 50 extracts from various species of the flowering plant genus Hypericum was investigated using the Kirby-Bauer disk diffusion susceptibility test against Paenibacillus larvae, a spore-forming, Gram-positive bacterial pathogen that causes American foulbrood (AFB), a lethal disease affecting honeybee brood worldwide. Of the tested extracts, 14 were identified as highly active against P. larvae as compared to the activity of the positive control, indicating the presence of highly potent antibacterial compounds in the extracts. Examination of these extracts using TLC and HPLC/MS analyses revealed the presence of acylphloroglucinol and filicinic-acid derivatives. Six pure compounds isolated from these extracts, viz., hyperforin (1), uliginosin B (2), uliginosin A (3), 7-epiclusianone (4), albaspidin AA (5), and drummondin E (6), displayed strong antibacterial activity against the vegetative form of P. larvae (MIC ranging from 0.168-220 μM). Incubation of P. larvae spores with the lipophilic extract of Hypericum perforatum and its main acylphloroglucinol constituent 1 led to the observation of significantly fewer colony forming units as compared to the negative control, indicating that the acylphloroglucinol scaffold represents an interesting lead structure for the development of new AFB control agents. PMID:24827680

  2. Arthropods affecting the human eye.

    PubMed

    Panadero-Fontán, Rosario; Otranto, Domenico

    2015-02-28

    Ocular infestations by arthropods consist in the parasitization of the human eye, either directly (e.g., some insect larvae causing ophthalmomyiasis) or via arthropods feeding on lachrymal/conjunctival secretions (e.g., some eye-seeking insects, which also act as vectors of eye pathogens). In addition, demodicosis and phthiriasis may also cause eye discomfort in humans. Ophthalmomyiasis by larvae of the families Oestridae, Calliphoridae and Sarcophagidae, are frequent causative agents of human ocular infestations. Over the last decades, the extensive use of macrocyclic lactones in cattle has reduced the frequency of infestations by Hypoderma bovis and Hypoderma lineatum (family Oestridae), and consequently, human infestations by these species. A prompt diagnosis of ocular myiasis (e.g., by serological tests) is pivotal for positive prognoses, particularly when the larvae are not detectable during the ophthalmologic examination. Molecular diagnoses may also assist physicians and parasitologists in achieving time-efficient diagnoses of infestations by Oestridae causing myiasis. Finally, due to widespread international travel to exotic destinations, cases of myiasis are increasing in non-endemic areas, therefore requiring physicians to acquire a profound knowledge of the clinical symptoms linked to these infestations to prevent costly, inappropriate treatments or severe complications. PMID:25620292

  3. Human cerebral response to animal affective vocalizations

    PubMed Central

    Belin, Pascal; Fecteau, Shirley; Charest, Ian; Nicastro, Nicholas; Hauser, Marc D; Armony, Jorge L

    2007-01-01

    It is presently unknown whether our response to affective vocalizations is specific to those generated by humans or more universal, triggered by emotionally matched vocalizations generated by other species. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging in normal participants to measure cerebral activity during auditory stimulation with affectively valenced animal vocalizations, some familiar (cats) and others not (rhesus monkeys). Positively versus negatively valenced vocalizations from cats and monkeys elicited different cerebral responses despite the participants' inability to differentiate the valence of these animal vocalizations by overt behavioural responses. Moreover, the comparison with human non-speech affective vocalizations revealed a common response to the valence in orbitofrontal cortex, a key component on the limbic system. These findings suggest that the neural mechanisms involved in processing human affective vocalizations may be recruited by heterospecific affective vocalizations at an unconscious level, supporting claims of shared emotional systems across species. PMID:18077254

  4. How do humans affect wildlife nematodes?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Weinstein, Sara B.; Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2015-01-01

    Human actions can affect wildlife and their nematode parasites. Species introductions and human-facilitated range expansions can create new host–parasite interactions. Novel hosts can introduce parasites and have the potential to both amplify and dilute nematode transmission. Furthermore, humans can alter existing nematode dynamics by changing host densities and the abiotic conditions that affect larval parasite survival. Human impacts on wildlife might impair parasites by reducing the abundance of their hosts; however, domestic animal production and complex life cycles can maintain transmission even when wildlife becomes rare. Although wildlife nematodes have many possible responses to human actions, understanding host and parasite natural history, and the mechanisms behind the changing disease dynamics might improve disease control in the few cases where nematode parasitism impacts wildlife.

  5. How do humans affect wildlife nematodes?

    PubMed

    Weinstein, Sara B; Lafferty, Kevin D

    2015-05-01

    Human actions can affect wildlife and their nematode parasites. Species introductions and human-facilitated range expansions can create new host-parasite interactions. Novel hosts can introduce parasites and have the potential to both amplify and dilute nematode transmission. Furthermore, humans can alter existing nematode dynamics by changing host densities and the abiotic conditions that affect larval parasite survival. Human impacts on wildlife might impair parasites by reducing the abundance of their hosts; however, domestic animal production and complex life cycles can maintain transmission even when wildlife becomes rare. Although wildlife nematodes have many possible responses to human actions, understanding host and parasite natural history, and the mechanisms behind the changing disease dynamics might improve disease control in the few cases where nematode parasitism impacts wildlife. PMID:25680855

  6. A worldwide population study of the Ag-system haplotypes, a genetic polymorphism of human low-density lipoprotein.

    PubMed

    Breguet, G; Bütler, R; Bütler-Brunner, E; Sanchez-Mazas, A

    1990-03-01

    The aim of this investigation is to examine the distribution of the Ag immunological polymorphism in human populations on a worldwide scale and to look for possible explanations of this distribution in the field of modern human peopling history and Ag-system evolution. Extensive Ag-antigene typings were carried out on 13 human population samples, including sub-Saharan African, European, west and east Asiatic, Melanesian, Australian aborigine, and Amerindian groups. Complete Ag-haplotype frequencies were estimated by maximum-likelihood-score procedures, and the data were analyzed by genetic distance computations and principal coordinate projections. With the exception of the Amerindian sample, the Ag polymorphism is shown to be highly polymorphic in all the populations tested. Their genetic relationships appear to be closely correlated to their geographical distribution. This suggests that the Ag system has evolved as a neutral or nearly neutral polymorphism and that it is highly informative for modern human peopling history studies. From the worldwide Ag haplotypic distributions, a model for the Ag molecular structure is derived. According to this model and to the most recent results obtained from molecular data, the establishment of the Ag polymorphism could be explained by several mutations and recombination events between the haplotypes most frequently found in human populations today. As a conclusion, genetic and paleontological data suggest that the genetic structure of caucasoid populations (located from North Africa to India) may be the least differentiated from an ancestral genetic stock. Worldwide genetic differentiations are properly explained as the results of westward and eastward human migrations from a Near East-centered but undefined geographical area where modern humans may have originated. The importance of Ag polymorphism analyses for the reconstruction of human settlement history and origins is discussed in the light of the main conclusions of

  7. A worldwide population study of the Ag-system haplotypes, a genetic polymorphism of human low-density lipoprotein.

    PubMed Central

    Breguet, G; Bütler, R; Bütler-Brunner, E; Sanchez-Mazas, A

    1990-01-01

    The aim of this investigation is to examine the distribution of the Ag immunological polymorphism in human populations on a worldwide scale and to look for possible explanations of this distribution in the field of modern human peopling history and Ag-system evolution. Extensive Ag-antigene typings were carried out on 13 human population samples, including sub-Saharan African, European, west and east Asiatic, Melanesian, Australian aborigine, and Amerindian groups. Complete Ag-haplotype frequencies were estimated by maximum-likelihood-score procedures, and the data were analyzed by genetic distance computations and principal coordinate projections. With the exception of the Amerindian sample, the Ag polymorphism is shown to be highly polymorphic in all the populations tested. Their genetic relationships appear to be closely correlated to their geographical distribution. This suggests that the Ag system has evolved as a neutral or nearly neutral polymorphism and that it is highly informative for modern human peopling history studies. From the worldwide Ag haplotypic distributions, a model for the Ag molecular structure is derived. According to this model and to the most recent results obtained from molecular data, the establishment of the Ag polymorphism could be explained by several mutations and recombination events between the haplotypes most frequently found in human populations today. As a conclusion, genetic and paleontological data suggest that the genetic structure of caucasoid populations (located from North Africa to India) may be the least differentiated from an ancestral genetic stock. Worldwide genetic differentiations are properly explained as the results of westward and eastward human migrations from a Near East-centered but undefined geographical area where modern humans may have originated. The importance of Ag polymorphism analyses for the reconstruction of human settlement history and origins is discussed in the light of the main conclusions of

  8. Geographic population structure analysis of worldwide human populations infers their biogeographical origins

    PubMed Central

    Elhaik, Eran; Tatarinova, Tatiana; Chebotarev, Dmitri; Piras, Ignazio S.; Maria Calò, Carla; De Montis, Antonella; Atzori, Manuela; Marini, Monica; Tofanelli, Sergio; Francalacci, Paolo; Pagani, Luca; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Xue, Yali; Cucca, Francesco; Schurr, Theodore G.; Gaieski, Jill B.; Melendez, Carlalynne; Vilar, Miguel G.; Owings, Amanda C.; Gómez, Rocío; Fujita, Ricardo; Santos, Fabrício R.; Comas, David; Balanovsky, Oleg; Balanovska, Elena; Zalloua, Pierre; Soodyall, Himla; Pitchappan, Ramasamy; GaneshPrasad, ArunKumar; Hammer, Michael; Matisoo-Smith, Lisa; Wells, R. Spencer; Acosta, Oscar; Adhikarla, Syama; Adler, Christina J.; Bertranpetit, Jaume; Clarke, Andrew C.; Cooper, Alan; Der Sarkissian, Clio S. I.; Haak, Wolfgang; Haber, Marc; Jin, Li; Kaplan, Matthew E.; Li, Hui; Li, Shilin; Martínez-Cruz, Begoña; Merchant, Nirav C.; Mitchell, John R.; Parida, Laxmi; Platt, Daniel E.; Quintana-Murci, Lluis; Renfrew, Colin; Lacerda, Daniela R.; Royyuru, Ajay K.; Sandoval, Jose Raul; Santhakumari, Arun Varatharajan; Soria Hernanz, David F.; Swamikrishnan, Pandikumar; Ziegle, Janet S.

    2014-01-01

    The search for a method that utilizes biological information to predict humans’ place of origin has occupied scientists for millennia. Over the past four decades, scientists have employed genetic data in an effort to achieve this goal but with limited success. While biogeographical algorithms using next-generation sequencing data have achieved an accuracy of 700 km in Europe, they were inaccurate elsewhere. Here we describe the Geographic Population Structure (GPS) algorithm and demonstrate its accuracy with three data sets using 40,000–130,000 SNPs. GPS placed 83% of worldwide individuals in their country of origin. Applied to over 200 Sardinians villagers, GPS placed a quarter of them in their villages and most of the rest within 50 km of their villages. GPS’s accuracy and power to infer the biogeography of worldwide individuals down to their country or, in some cases, village, of origin, underscores the promise of admixture-based methods for biogeography and has ramifications for genetic ancestry testing. PMID:24781250

  9. Humans Process Dog and Human Facial Affect in Similar Ways

    PubMed Central

    Schirmer, Annett; Seow, Cui Shan; Penney, Trevor B.

    2013-01-01

    Humans share aspects of their facial affect with other species such as dogs. Here we asked whether untrained human observers with and without dog experience are sensitive to these aspects and recognize dog affect with better-than-chance accuracy. Additionally, we explored similarities in the way observers process dog and human expressions. The stimulus material comprised naturalistic facial expressions of pet dogs and human infants obtained through positive (i.e., play) and negative (i.e., social isolation) provocation. Affect recognition was assessed explicitly in a rating task using full face images and images cropped to reveal the eye region only. Additionally, affect recognition was assessed implicitly in a lexical decision task using full faces as primes and emotional words and pseudowords as targets. We found that untrained human observers rated full face dog expressions from the positive and negative condition more accurately than would be expected by chance. Although dog experience was unnecessary for this effect, it significantly facilitated performance. Additionally, we observed a range of similarities between human and dog face processing. First, the facial expressions of both species facilitated lexical decisions to affectively congruous target words suggesting that their processing was equally automatic. Second, both dog and human negative expressions were recognized from both full and cropped faces. Third, female observers were more sensitive to affective information than were male observers and this difference was comparable for dog and human expressions. Together, these results extend existing work on cross-species similarities in facial emotions and provide evidence that these similarities are naturally exploited when humans interact with dogs. PMID:24023954

  10. Worldwide Prevalence of Human Papillomavirus and Relative Risk of Prostate Cancer: A Meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Lin; Xie, Shuanghua; Feng, Xiaoshuang; Chen, Yuheng; Zheng, Tongzhang; Dai, Min; Ke Zhou, Cindy; Hu, Zhibin; Li, Ni; Hang, Dong

    2015-01-01

    Despite the increasing number of studies conducted recently to evaluate the association between HPV infections and the risk of prostate cancer, the results remain inconclusive. Furthermore, the prevalence and distribution of overall and individual HPV types worldwide in prostate cancer has not been reported until now. Therefore, we estimated the prevalence of HPV in prostate cancer by pooling data of 46 studies with 4919 prostate cancer cases, taking into account the heterogeneity of major related parameters, including study region, specimen type, HPV DNA source, detection method, publication calendar period and Gleason score. Moreover, we tested the association of HPV infections with prostate cancer risks by a meta-analysis of 26 tissue-based case-control studies. We found that the prevalence of HPV infection was 18.93% (95% CI = 17.84–20.05%) in prostate cancer cases, and most of which were high-risk HPV types (17.73%, 95% CI = 16.52–18.99%). The prevalence varied by region, PCR primers used, publication calendar period and Gleason score. Our study also showed a significantly increased risk of prostate cancer with the positivity of overall HPV detected in prostate tissues (OR = 1.79, 95% CI = 1.29–2.49) and revealed the geographic variation of association strength (P < 0.001). In conclusion, HPV infections may contribute to the risk of prostate cancer. PMID:26441160

  11. Analysis of the Genetic Basis of Disease in the Context of Worldwide Human Relationships and Migration

    PubMed Central

    Corona, Erik; Chen, Rong; Sikora, Martin; Morgan, Alexander A.; Patel, Chirag J.; Ramesh, Aditya; Bustamante, Carlos D.; Butte, Atul J.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic diversity across different human populations can enhance understanding of the genetic basis of disease. We calculated the genetic risk of 102 diseases in 1,043 unrelated individuals across 51 populations of the Human Genome Diversity Panel. We found that genetic risk for type 2 diabetes and pancreatic cancer decreased as humans migrated toward East Asia. In addition, biliary liver cirrhosis, alopecia areata, bladder cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, membranous nephropathy, systemic lupus erythematosus, systemic sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, and vitiligo have undergone genetic risk differentiation. This analysis represents a large-scale attempt to characterize genetic risk differentiation in the context of migration. We anticipate that our findings will enable detailed analysis pertaining to the driving forces behind genetic risk differentiation. PMID:23717210

  12. Worldwide construction

    SciTech Connect

    Williamson, M.

    1994-10-17

    The paper lists major construction projects in worldwide processing and pipelining, showing capacities, contractors, estimated costs, and time of construction. The lists are divided into refineries, petrochemical plants, sulfur recovery units, gas processing plants, pipelines, and related fuel facilities. This last classification includes cogeneration plants, coal liquefaction and gasification plants, biomass power plants, geothermal power plants, integrated coal gasification combined-cycle power plants, and a coal briquetting plant.

  13. PCA-Correlated SNPs for Structure Identification in Worldwide Human Populations

    PubMed Central

    Paschou, Peristera; Ziv, Elad; Burchard, Esteban G; Choudhry, Shweta; Rodriguez-Cintron, William; Mahoney, Michael W; Drineas, Petros

    2007-01-01

    Existing methods to ascertain small sets of markers for the identification of human population structure require prior knowledge of individual ancestry. Based on Principal Components Analysis (PCA), and recent results in theoretical computer science, we present a novel algorithm that, applied on genomewide data, selects small subsets of SNPs (PCA-correlated SNPs) to reproduce the structure found by PCA on the complete dataset, without use of ancestry information. Evaluating our method on a previously described dataset (10,805 SNPs, 11 populations), we demonstrate that a very small set of PCA-correlated SNPs can be effectively employed to assign individuals to particular continents or populations, using a simple clustering algorithm. We validate our methods on the HapMap populations and achieve perfect intercontinental differentiation with 14 PCA-correlated SNPs. The Chinese and Japanese populations can be easily differentiated using less than 100 PCA-correlated SNPs ascertained after evaluating 1.7 million SNPs from HapMap. We show that, in general, structure informative SNPs are not portable across geographic regions. However, we manage to identify a general set of 50 PCA-correlated SNPs that effectively assigns individuals to one of nine different populations. Compared to analysis with the measure of informativeness, our methods, although unsupervised, achieved similar results. We proceed to demonstrate that our algorithm can be effectively used for the analysis of admixed populations without having to trace the origin of individuals. Analyzing a Puerto Rican dataset (192 individuals, 7,257 SNPs), we show that PCA-correlated SNPs can be used to successfully predict structure and ancestry proportions. We subsequently validate these SNPs for structure identification in an independent Puerto Rican dataset. The algorithm that we introduce runs in seconds and can be easily applied on large genome-wide datasets, facilitating the identification of population

  14. Worldwide patterns of genetic differentiation imply multiple 'domestications' of Aedes aegypti, a major vector of human diseases.

    PubMed

    Brown, Julia E; McBride, Carolyn S; Johnson, Petrina; Ritchie, Scott; Paupy, Christophe; Bossin, Hervé; Lutomiah, Joel; Fernandez-Salas, Ildefonso; Ponlawat, Alongkot; Cornel, Anthony J; Black, William C; Gorrochotegui-Escalante, Norma; Urdaneta-Marquez, Ludmel; Sylla, Massamba; Slotman, Michel; Murray, Kristy O; Walker, Christopher; Powell, Jeffrey R

    2011-08-22

    Understanding the processes by which species colonize and adapt to human habitats is particularly important in the case of disease-vectoring arthropods. The mosquito species Aedes aegypti, a major vector of dengue and yellow fever viruses, probably originated as a wild, zoophilic species in sub-Saharan Africa, where some populations still breed in tree holes in forested habitats. Many populations of the species, however, have evolved to thrive in human habitats and to bite humans. This includes some populations within Africa as well as almost all those outside Africa. It is not clear whether all domestic populations are genetically related and represent a single 'domestication' event, or whether association with human habitats has developed multiple times independently within the species. To test the hypotheses above, we screened 24 worldwide population samples of Ae. aegypti at 12 polymorphic microsatellite loci. We identified two distinct genetic clusters: one included all domestic populations outside of Africa and the other included both domestic and forest populations within Africa. This suggests that human association in Africa occurred independently from that in domestic populations across the rest of the world. Additionally, measures of genetic diversity support Ae. aegypti in Africa as the ancestral form of the species. Individuals from domestic populations outside Africa can reliably be assigned back to their population of origin, which will help determine the origins of new introductions of Ae. aegypti. PMID:21227970

  15. Human mobility and the worldwide impact of intentional localized highly pathogenic virus release

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves, Bruno; Balcan, Duygu; Vespignani, Alessandro

    2013-01-01

    The threat of bioterrorism and the possibility of accidental release have spawned a growth of interest in modeling the course of the release of a highly pathogenic agent. Studies focused on strategies to contain local outbreaks after their detection show that timely interventions with vaccination and contact tracing are able to halt transmission. However, such studies do not consider the effects of human mobility patterns. Using a large-scale structured metapopulation model to simulate the global spread of smallpox after an intentional release event, we show that index cases and potential outbreaks can occur in different continents even before the detection of the pathogen release. These results have two major implications: i) intentional release of a highly pathogenic agent within a country will have global effects; ii) the release event may trigger outbreaks in countries lacking the health infrastructure necessary for effective containment. The presented study provides data with potential uses in defining contingency plans at the National and International level. PMID:23860371

  16. Human mobility and the worldwide impact of intentional localized highly pathogenic virus release.

    PubMed

    Gonçalves, Bruno; Balcan, Duygu; Vespignani, Alessandro

    2013-01-01

    The threat of bioterrorism and the possibility of accidental release have spawned a growth of interest in modeling the course of the release of a highly pathogenic agent. Studies focused on strategies to contain local outbreaks after their detection show that timely interventions with vaccination and contact tracing are able to halt transmission. However, such studies do not consider the effects of human mobility patterns. Using a large-scale structured metapopulation model to simulate the global spread of smallpox after an intentional release event, we show that index cases and potential outbreaks can occur in different continents even before the detection of the pathogen release. These results have two major implications: i) intentional release of a highly pathogenic agent within a country will have global effects; ii) the release event may trigger outbreaks in countries lacking the health infrastructure necessary for effective containment. The presented study provides data with potential uses in defining contingency plans at the National and International level. PMID:23860371

  17. A robust ambient temperature collection and stabilization strategy: Enabling worldwide functional studies of the human microbiome

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Ericka L.; Li, Weizhong; Klitgord, Niels; Highlander, Sarah K.; Dayrit, Mark; Seguritan, Victor; Yooseph, Shibu; Biggs, William; Venter, J. Craig; Nelson, Karen E.; Jones, Marcus B.

    2016-01-01

    As reports on possible associations between microbes and the host increase in number, more meaningful interpretations of this information require an ability to compare data sets across studies. This is dependent upon standardization of workflows to ensure comparability both within and between studies. Here we propose the standard use of an alternate collection and stabilization method that would facilitate such comparisons. The DNA Genotek OMNIgene∙Gut Stool Microbiome Kit was compared to the currently accepted community standard of freezing to store human stool samples prior to whole genome sequencing (WGS) for microbiome studies. This stabilization and collection device allows for ambient temperature storage, automation, and ease of shipping/transfer of samples. The device permitted the same data reproducibility as with frozen samples, and yielded higher recovery of nucleic acids. Collection and stabilization of stool microbiome samples with the DNA Genotek collection device, combined with our extraction and WGS, provides a robust, reproducible workflow that enables standardized global collection, storage, and analysis of stool for microbiome studies. PMID:27558918

  18. A robust ambient temperature collection and stabilization strategy: Enabling worldwide functional studies of the human microbiome.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Ericka L; Li, Weizhong; Klitgord, Niels; Highlander, Sarah K; Dayrit, Mark; Seguritan, Victor; Yooseph, Shibu; Biggs, William; Venter, J Craig; Nelson, Karen E; Jones, Marcus B

    2016-01-01

    As reports on possible associations between microbes and the host increase in number, more meaningful interpretations of this information require an ability to compare data sets across studies. This is dependent upon standardization of workflows to ensure comparability both within and between studies. Here we propose the standard use of an alternate collection and stabilization method that would facilitate such comparisons. The DNA Genotek OMNIgene∙Gut Stool Microbiome Kit was compared to the currently accepted community standard of freezing to store human stool samples prior to whole genome sequencing (WGS) for microbiome studies. This stabilization and collection device allows for ambient temperature storage, automation, and ease of shipping/transfer of samples. The device permitted the same data reproducibility as with frozen samples, and yielded higher recovery of nucleic acids. Collection and stabilization of stool microbiome samples with the DNA Genotek collection device, combined with our extraction and WGS, provides a robust, reproducible workflow that enables standardized global collection, storage, and analysis of stool for microbiome studies. PMID:27558918

  19. Human freezing in response to affective films.

    PubMed

    Hagenaars, Muriel A; Roelofs, Karin; Stins, John F

    2014-01-01

    Human freezing has been objectively assessed using a passive picture viewing paradigm as an analog for threat. These results should be replicated for other stimuli in order to determine their stability and generalizability. Affective films are used frequently to elicit affective responses, but it is unknown whether they also elicit freezing-like defense responses. To test whether this is the case, 50 participants watched neutral, pleasant and unpleasant film fragments while standing on a stabilometric platform and wearing a polar band to assess heart rate. Freezing-like responses (indicated by overall reduced body sway and heart rate deceleration) were observed for the unpleasant film only. The unpleasant film also elicited early reduced body sway (1-2 s after stimulus onset). Heart rate and body sway were correlated during the unpleasant film only. The results suggest that ecologically valid stimuli like films are adequate stimuli in evoking defense responses. The results also underscore the importance of including time courses in human experimental research on defense reactions in order to delineate different stages in the defense response. PMID:23805855

  20. Factors affecting outcomes in patients reaching end-stage kidney disease worldwide: differences in access to renal replacement therapy, modality use, and haemodialysis practices.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Bruce M; Akizawa, Tadao; Jager, Kitty J; Kerr, Peter G; Saran, Rajiv; Pisoni, Ronald L

    2016-07-16

    More than 2 million people worldwide are being treated for end-stage kidney disease (ESKD). This Series paper provides an overview of incidence, modality use (in-centre haemodialysis, home dialysis, or transplantation), and mortality for patients with ESKD based on national registry data. We also present data from an international cohort study to highlight differences in haemodialysis practices that affect survival and the experience of patients who rely on this therapy, which is both life-sustaining and profoundly disruptive to their quality of life. Data illustrate disparities in access to renal replacement therapy of any kind and in the use of transplantation or home dialysis, both of which are widely considered preferable to in-centre haemodialysis for many patients with ESKD in settings where infrastructure permits. For most patients with ESKD worldwide who are treated with in-centre haemodialysis, overall survival is poor, but longer in some Asian countries than elsewhere in the world, and longer in Europe than in the USA, although this gap has reduced. Commendable haemodialysis practice includes exceptionally high use of surgical vascular access in Japan and in some European countries, and the use of longer or more frequent dialysis sessions in some countries, allowing for more effective volume management. Mortality is especially high soon after ESKD onset, and improved preparation for ESKD is needed including alignment of decision making with the wishes of patients and families. PMID:27226132

  1. Nuclear Genetic Diversity in Human Lice (Pediculus humanus) Reveals Continental Differences and High Inbreeding among Worldwide Populations

    PubMed Central

    Ascunce, Marina S.; Toups, Melissa A.; Kassu, Gebreyes; Fane, Jackie; Scholl, Katlyn; Reed, David L.

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of parasites is important to both basic and applied evolutionary biology. Knowledge of the genetic structure of parasite populations is critical for our ability to predict how an infection can spread through a host population and for the design of effective control methods. However, very little is known about the genetic structure of most human parasites, including the human louse (Pediculus humanus). This species is composed of two ecotypes: the head louse (Pediculus humanus capitis De Geer), and the clothing (body) louse (Pediculus humanus humanus Linnaeus). Hundreds of millions of head louse infestations affect children every year, and this number is on the rise, in part because of increased resistance to insecticides. Clothing lice affect mostly homeless and refugee-camp populations and although they are less prevalent than head lice, the medical consequences are more severe because they vector deadly bacterial pathogens. In this study we present the first assessment of the genetic structure of human louse populations by analyzing the nuclear genetic variation at 15 newly developed microsatellite loci in 93 human lice from 11 sites in four world regions. Both ecotypes showed heterozygote deficits relative to Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium and high inbreeding values, an expected pattern given their parasitic life history. Bayesian clustering analyses assigned lice to four distinct genetic clusters that were geographically structured. The low levels of gene flow among louse populations suggested that the evolution of insecticide resistance in lice would most likely be affected by local selection pressures, underscoring the importance of tailoring control strategies to population-specific genetic makeup and evolutionary history. Our panel of microsatellite markers provides powerful data to investigate not only ecological and evolutionary processes in lice, but also those in their human hosts because of the long-term coevolutionary

  2. Nuclear genetic diversity in human lice (Pediculus humanus) reveals continental differences and high inbreeding among worldwide populations.

    PubMed

    Ascunce, Marina S; Toups, Melissa A; Kassu, Gebreyes; Fane, Jackie; Scholl, Katlyn; Reed, David L

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of parasites is important to both basic and applied evolutionary biology. Knowledge of the genetic structure of parasite populations is critical for our ability to predict how an infection can spread through a host population and for the design of effective control methods. However, very little is known about the genetic structure of most human parasites, including the human louse (Pediculus humanus). This species is composed of two ecotypes: the head louse (Pediculus humanus capitis De Geer), and the clothing (body) louse (Pediculus humanus humanus Linnaeus). Hundreds of millions of head louse infestations affect children every year, and this number is on the rise, in part because of increased resistance to insecticides. Clothing lice affect mostly homeless and refugee-camp populations and although they are less prevalent than head lice, the medical consequences are more severe because they vector deadly bacterial pathogens. In this study we present the first assessment of the genetic structure of human louse populations by analyzing the nuclear genetic variation at 15 newly developed microsatellite loci in 93 human lice from 11 sites in four world regions. Both ecotypes showed heterozygote deficits relative to Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium and high inbreeding values, an expected pattern given their parasitic life history. Bayesian clustering analyses assigned lice to four distinct genetic clusters that were geographically structured. The low levels of gene flow among louse populations suggested that the evolution of insecticide resistance in lice would most likely be affected by local selection pressures, underscoring the importance of tailoring control strategies to population-specific genetic makeup and evolutionary history. Our panel of microsatellite markers provides powerful data to investigate not only ecological and evolutionary processes in lice, but also those in their human hosts because of the long-term coevolutionary

  3. 40 CFR 230.76 - Actions affecting human use.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 24 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Actions affecting human use. 230.76... Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.76 Actions affecting human use. Minimization of adverse effects on human use... aquatic areas; (c) Timing the discharge to avoid the seasons or periods when human recreational...

  4. 40 CFR 230.76 - Actions affecting human use.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 25 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Actions affecting human use. 230.76... Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.76 Actions affecting human use. Minimization of adverse effects on human use... aquatic areas; (c) Timing the discharge to avoid the seasons or periods when human recreational...

  5. 40 CFR 230.76 - Actions affecting human use.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 26 2012-07-01 2011-07-01 true Actions affecting human use. 230.76... Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.76 Actions affecting human use. Minimization of adverse effects on human use... aquatic areas; (c) Timing the discharge to avoid the seasons or periods when human recreational...

  6. 40 CFR 230.76 - Actions affecting human use.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 26 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Actions affecting human use. 230.76... Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.76 Actions affecting human use. Minimization of adverse effects on human use... aquatic areas; (c) Timing the discharge to avoid the seasons or periods when human recreational...

  7. 40 CFR 230.76 - Actions affecting human use.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 25 2011-07-01 2011-07-01 false Actions affecting human use. 230.76... Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.76 Actions affecting human use. Minimization of adverse effects on human use... aquatic areas; (c) Timing the discharge to avoid the seasons or periods when human recreational...

  8. [Affective computing--a mysterious tool to explore human emotions].

    PubMed

    Li, Xin; Li, Honghong; Dou, Yi; Hou, Yongjie; Li, Changwu

    2013-12-01

    Perception, affection and consciousness are basic psychological functions of human being. Affection is the subjective reflection of different kinds of objects. The foundation of human being's thinking is constituted by the three basic functions. Affective computing is an effective tool of revealing the affectiveness of human being in order to understand the world. Our research of affective computing focused on the relation, the generation and the influent factors among different affections. In this paper, the affective mechanism, the basic theory of affective computing, is studied, the method of acquiring and recognition of affective information is discussed, and the application of affective computing is summarized as well, in order to attract more researchers into this working area. PMID:24645628

  9. Affective Learning: Environmental Ethics and Human Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gough, Noel P.

    1977-01-01

    This discussion of home economics as a discipline which should focus on its affective foundations, covers the following areas: Affective context of home economics education, the adequacy of the home economics value complex for coping with environmental problems, and toward an acceptable environmental ethic. (SH)

  10. Infrasound from Wind Turbines Could Affect Humans

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salt, Alec N.; Kaltenbach, James A.

    2011-01-01

    Wind turbines generate low-frequency sounds that affect the ear. The ear is superficially similar to a microphone, converting mechanical sound waves into electrical signals, but does this by complex physiologic processes. Serious misconceptions about low-frequency sound and the ear have resulted from a failure to consider in detail how the ear…

  11. Does Globalization Affect Human Well-Being?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsai, Ming-Chang

    2007-01-01

    The prevailing theorizing of globalization's influence of human well-being suggests to assess both the favorable and unfavorable outcomes. This study formulates a dialectical model, adopts a comprehensive globalization measure and uses a three-wave panel data during 1980-2000 to empirically test direct and indirect effects of global flows' human…

  12. Toward an Affective Pedagogy of Human Rights Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hung, Ruyu

    2014-01-01

    This paper explores the notion of Affective Pedagogy of Human Rights Education (APHRE) on a theoretical level and suggests a concept of curricular framework. APHRE highlights the significance of affectivity and body in the process of learning, factors usually neglected in the mainstream intellectualistic approach to learning, especially in areas…

  13. Does Human Migration Affect International Trade? A Complex-Network Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Fagiolo, Giorgio; Mastrorillo, Marina

    2014-01-01

    This paper explores the relationships between international human migration and merchandise trade using a complex-network approach. We firstly compare the topological structure of worldwide networks of human migration and bilateral trade over the period 1960–2000. Next, we ask whether pairs of countries that are more central in the migration network trade more. We show that: (i) the networks of international migration and trade are strongly correlated, and such correlation can be mostly explained by country economic/demographic size and geographical distance; (ii) centrality in the international-migration network boosts bilateral trade; (iii) intensive forms of country centrality are more trade enhancing than their extensive counterparts. Our findings suggest that bilateral trade between any two countries is not only affected by the presence of migrants from either countries, but also by their relative embeddedness in the complex web of corridors making up the network of international human migration. PMID:24828376

  14. Infectious disease and worldwide declines of amphibian populations, with comments on emerging diseases in coral reef organisms and in humans.

    PubMed Central

    Carey, C

    2000-01-01

    Many populations of amphibians are declining on all six continents on which they occur. Some causes of amphibian declines, such as habitat destruction, direct application of xenobiotics, and introduction of predators or competitors, are clearly attributable to human activities. Infectious disease appears to be the direct cause of mass amphibian die-offs in relatively undisturbed areas of the world where anthropomorphic environmental disruption is minimal. In these cases, it is not yet clear whether these epizootics result from the natural evolution of new pathogens or from environmental changes that promote the emergence of pathogenic forms and/or that weaken the immune defenses of amphibians. Because some aspects of pathogen-related amphibian mass mortalities are similar to outbreaks of new diseases in humans and coral reef organisms, amphibian declines may be part of a much larger pattern than previously appreciated. PMID:10698730

  15. The role of an independent and interdisciplinary assessment of research studies with human subjects in Europe and worldwide.

    PubMed

    Rittner, Christian

    2009-04-01

    The author reviews the history of human experimentation beginning as documented by holes in human sculls 6000 years before, addressing the first controlled experiments by James Lind and Edward Jenner in the 18th century and ending with the inhuman experiments in Nazi Camps and the Tuskegee case in Alabama in the 20th century. Resting on the Declaration of Helsinki, quite a number of declarations, scientific, national and international guidelines was issued since aiming at enhancing medical research as well as protecting the subjects from harm. Now a dense ethical, legal, scientific and social network exists for investigator initiated and commercial trials for a rich market of the Pharmaceutical Industry. However, pitfalls still occur (e.g., the cases of thalidomide, VIOXX and TGN 1412) as examples that can only be prevented by even more stringent rules and well informed, conscientious, compassionate and responsible performance of all parties involved. PMID:19269235

  16. Consensus and stratification in the affective meaning of human sociality

    PubMed Central

    Ambrasat, Jens; von Scheve, Christian; Conrad, Markus; Schauenburg, Gesche; Schröder, Tobias

    2014-01-01

    We investigate intrasocietal consensus and variation in affective meanings of concepts related to authority and community, two elementary forms of human sociality. Survey participants (n = 2,849) from different socioeconomic status (SES) groups in German society provided ratings of 909 social concepts along three basic dimensions of affective meaning. Results show widespread consensus on these meanings within society and demonstrate that a meaningful structure of socially shared knowledge emerges from organizing concepts according to their affective similarity. The consensus finding is further qualified by evidence for subtle systematic variation along SES differences. In relation to affectively neutral words, high-status individuals evaluate intimacy-related and socially desirable concepts as less positive and powerful than middle- or low-status individuals, while perceiving antisocial concepts as relatively more threatening. This systematic variation across SES groups suggests that the affective meaning of sociality is to some degree a function of social stratification. PMID:24843121

  17. Elementary Affective Education in Human Relations: Teachers Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Florida Univ., Gainesville. P. K. Yonge Lab. School.

    The activities and resources in this teacher's guide have been developed and field tested as part of the research and development mission of the P. K. Yonge Laboratory School of the College of Education of the University of Florida. The Elementary Affective Education for Human Relations Project utilized classroom teachers in a variety of settings…

  18. How Do Volcanoes Affect Human Life? Integrated Unit.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dayton, Rebecca; Edwards, Carrie; Sisler, Michelle

    This packet contains a unit on teaching about volcanoes. The following question is addressed: How do volcanoes affect human life? The unit covers approximately three weeks of instruction and strives to present volcanoes in an holistic form. The five subject areas of art, language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies are integrated into…

  19. The comparative psychopathology of affective disorders in animals and humans.

    PubMed

    Healy, D

    1987-01-01

    Reviews of animal models of affective disorders commonly concentrate on the behavioural features thereof, the supposed neurochemical substrates, the mode of production and the response to treatment of the state in question but ignore questions of psycho pathology. An attempt is made to deal critically with the psychopathology of human and animal affective disorders in the light of current operational criteria for the diagnosis of major depressive disorders. It is argued thatthe psychopathological tradition stemming from Jaspers may be more appropriate to a consideration of animal models of affective disorders than the psychopathological positions implicit in psychoanalysis, behaviourism or current cognitive psychologies and in addition more suited to meet these criteria. The adoption of such a perspective results in a shift of emphasis from abnormalities of psychological content to demonstrable neuropsychological deficits and a definition of affective disorders, whether in animals or humans, as psychosomatic illnesses, possibly involving a pathology of circadian rhythmicity. This perspective also suggests that animal models may be useful in the devel opment of more refined diagnostic criteria for affective disorders in humans. PMID:22158981

  20. Worldwide Blackberry Production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A survey of worldwide blackberry (Rubus spp.) production was conducted in 2005. Results indicated there were an estimated 20,035 ha of blackberries planted and commercially cultivated worldwide, a 45% increase from 1995. Wild blackberries still make a significant contribution to worldwide production...

  1. Incorporating affective bias in models of human decision making

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nygren, Thomas E.

    1991-01-01

    Research on human decision making has traditionally focused on how people actually make decisions, how good their decisions are, and how their decisions can be improved. Recent research suggests that this model is inadequate. Affective as well as cognitive components drive the way information about relevant outcomes and events is perceived, integrated, and used in the decision making process. The affective components include how the individual frames outcomes as good or bad, whether the individual anticipates regret in a decision situation, the affective mood state of the individual, and the psychological stress level anticipated or experienced in the decision situation. A focus of the current work has been to propose empirical studies that will attempt to examine in more detail the relationships between the latter two critical affective influences (mood state and stress) on decision making behavior.

  2. Ecology of conflict: marine food supply affects human-wildlife interactions on land.

    PubMed

    Artelle, Kyle A; Anderson, Sean C; Reynolds, John D; Cooper, Andrew B; Paquet, Paul C; Darimont, Chris T

    2016-01-01

    Human-wildlife conflicts impose considerable costs to people and wildlife worldwide. Most research focuses on proximate causes, offering limited generalizable understanding of ultimate drivers. We tested three competing hypotheses (problem individuals, regional population saturation, limited food supply) that relate to underlying processes of human-grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) conflict, using data from British Columbia, Canada, between 1960-2014. We found most support for the limited food supply hypothesis: in bear populations that feed on spawning salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.), the annual number of bears/km(2) killed due to conflicts with humans increased by an average of 20% (6-32% [95% CI]) for each 50% decrease in annual salmon biomass. Furthermore, we found that across all bear populations (with or without access to salmon), 81% of attacks on humans and 82% of conflict kills occurred after the approximate onset of hyperphagia (July 1(st)), a period of intense caloric demand. Contrary to practices by many management agencies, conflict frequency was not reduced by hunting or removal of problem individuals. Our finding that a marine resource affects terrestrial conflict suggests that evidence-based policy for reducing harm to wildlife and humans requires not only insight into ultimate drivers of conflict, but also management that spans ecosystem and jurisdictional boundaries. PMID:27185189

  3. Ecology of conflict: marine food supply affects human-wildlife interactions on land

    PubMed Central

    Artelle, Kyle A.; Anderson, Sean C.; Reynolds, John D.; Cooper, Andrew B.; Paquet, Paul C.; Darimont, Chris T.

    2016-01-01

    Human-wildlife conflicts impose considerable costs to people and wildlife worldwide. Most research focuses on proximate causes, offering limited generalizable understanding of ultimate drivers. We tested three competing hypotheses (problem individuals, regional population saturation, limited food supply) that relate to underlying processes of human-grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) conflict, using data from British Columbia, Canada, between 1960–2014. We found most support for the limited food supply hypothesis: in bear populations that feed on spawning salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.), the annual number of bears/km2 killed due to conflicts with humans increased by an average of 20% (6–32% [95% CI]) for each 50% decrease in annual salmon biomass. Furthermore, we found that across all bear populations (with or without access to salmon), 81% of attacks on humans and 82% of conflict kills occurred after the approximate onset of hyperphagia (July 1st), a period of intense caloric demand. Contrary to practices by many management agencies, conflict frequency was not reduced by hunting or removal of problem individuals. Our finding that a marine resource affects terrestrial conflict suggests that evidence-based policy for reducing harm to wildlife and humans requires not only insight into ultimate drivers of conflict, but also management that spans ecosystem and jurisdictional boundaries. PMID:27185189

  4. The impact of natural odors on affective states in humans.

    PubMed

    Weber, Sandra T; Heuberger, Eva

    2008-06-01

    Laboratory studies have shown a significant influence of certain fragrances on affective as well as cognitive states in humans. The aim of the current study was to measure the relationship between complex, natural odors and affective states, that is, calmness, alertness, and mood, in the field. In 4 experiments, the emotional impact, intensity, and hedonics of complex, natural plant odors were assessed in 32 healthy human subjects and compared with control conditions involving a similar outdoor environment without the tested fragrant plants. In all experiments, the selected fragrances were evaluated as more intense than the odors in the control conditions but pleasantness ratings differed only in 2 of the 4 experiments. The fragrances improved subjective ratings of calmness, alertness, and mood depending on the sequence of the conditions but independent of visual features of the environment. In contrast, a fifth experiment which tested the influence of natural and artificial pleasant odors and an artificial unpleasant odor on calmness, alertness, and mood in 22 subjects showed that the unpleasant odor impaired these affective states in humans independent of the order of presentation. On the other hand, no effects of the pleasant odors on mood and calmness were observed in this experiment. PMID:18353767

  5. Positive Affect and the Complex Dynamics of Human Flourishing

    PubMed Central

    Fredrickson, Barbara L.; Losada, Marcial F.

    2011-01-01

    Extending B. L. Fredrickson’s (1998) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada’s (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N = 188) completed an initial survey to identify flourishing mental health and then provided daily reports of experienced positive and negative emotions over 28 days. Results showed that the mean ratio of positive to negative affect was above 2.9 for individuals classified as flourishing and below that threshold for those not flourishing. Together with other evidence, these findings suggest that a set of general mathematical principles may describe the relations between positive affect and human flourishing. PMID:16221001

  6. Positive affect and the complex dynamics of human flourishing.

    PubMed

    Fredrickson, Barbara L; Losada, Marcial F

    2005-10-01

    Extending B. L. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada's (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N=188) completed an initial survey to identify flourishing mental health and then provided daily reports of experienced positive and negative emotions over 28 days. Results showed that the mean ratio of positive to negative affect was above 2.9 for individuals classified as flourishing and below that threshold for those not flourishing. Together with other evidence, these findings suggest that a set of general mathematical principles may describe the relations between positive affect and human flourishing. PMID:16221001

  7. 1986 Worldwide Petrochemical Directory

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-01-01

    The 1986 Worldwide Petrochemical Directory contains names, addresses, phone and telex numbers of the companies in the worldwide petrochemical community. Listed are more than 14,000 key operating personnel at nearly 2,000 plant sites in the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. Among the surveys included in this directory is the Worldwide Petrochemical Survey. This survey details petrochemical plant feedstocks, product and capacities.

  8. Global water resources affected by human interventions and climate change.

    PubMed

    Haddeland, Ingjerd; Heinke, Jens; Biemans, Hester; Eisner, Stephanie; Flörke, Martina; Hanasaki, Naota; Konzmann, Markus; Ludwig, Fulco; Masaki, Yoshimitsu; Schewe, Jacob; Stacke, Tobias; Tessler, Zachary D; Wada, Yoshihide; Wisser, Dominik

    2014-03-01

    Humans directly change the dynamics of the water cycle through dams constructed for water storage, and through water withdrawals for industrial, agricultural, or domestic purposes. Climate change is expected to additionally affect water supply and demand. Here, analyses of climate change and direct human impacts on the terrestrial water cycle are presented and compared using a multimodel approach. Seven global hydrological models have been forced with multiple climate projections, and with and without taking into account impacts of human interventions such as dams and water withdrawals on the hydrological cycle. Model results are analyzed for different levels of global warming, allowing for analyses in line with temperature targets for climate change mitigation. The results indicate that direct human impacts on the water cycle in some regions, e.g., parts of Asia and in the western United States, are of the same order of magnitude, or even exceed impacts to be expected for moderate levels of global warming (+2 K). Despite some spread in model projections, irrigation water consumption is generally projected to increase with higher global mean temperatures. Irrigation water scarcity is particularly large in parts of southern and eastern Asia, and is expected to become even larger in the future. PMID:24344275

  9. Global water resources affected by human interventions and climate change

    PubMed Central

    Haddeland, Ingjerd; Heinke, Jens; Biemans, Hester; Eisner, Stephanie; Flörke, Martina; Hanasaki, Naota; Konzmann, Markus; Ludwig, Fulco; Masaki, Yoshimitsu; Schewe, Jacob; Stacke, Tobias; Tessler, Zachary D.; Wada, Yoshihide; Wisser, Dominik

    2014-01-01

    Humans directly change the dynamics of the water cycle through dams constructed for water storage, and through water withdrawals for industrial, agricultural, or domestic purposes. Climate change is expected to additionally affect water supply and demand. Here, analyses of climate change and direct human impacts on the terrestrial water cycle are presented and compared using a multimodel approach. Seven global hydrological models have been forced with multiple climate projections, and with and without taking into account impacts of human interventions such as dams and water withdrawals on the hydrological cycle. Model results are analyzed for different levels of global warming, allowing for analyses in line with temperature targets for climate change mitigation. The results indicate that direct human impacts on the water cycle in some regions, e.g., parts of Asia and in the western United States, are of the same order of magnitude, or even exceed impacts to be expected for moderate levels of global warming (+2 K). Despite some spread in model projections, irrigation water consumption is generally projected to increase with higher global mean temperatures. Irrigation water scarcity is particularly large in parts of southern and eastern Asia, and is expected to become even larger in the future. PMID:24344275

  10. The worldwide "wildfire" problem.

    PubMed

    Gill, A Malcolm; Stephens, Scott L; Cary, Geoffrey J

    2013-03-01

    The worldwide "wildfire" problem is headlined by the loss of human lives and homes, but it applies generally to any adverse effects of unplanned fires, as events or regimes, on a wide range of environmental, social, and economic assets. The problem is complex and contingent, requiring continual attention to the changing circumstances of stakeholders, landscapes, and ecosystems; it occurs at a variety of temporal and spatial scales. Minimizing adverse outcomes involves controlling fires and fire regimes, increasing the resistance of assets to fires, locating or relocating assets away from the path of fires, and, as a probability of adverse impacts often remains, assisting recovery in the short-term while promoting the adaptation of societies in the long-term. There are short- and long-term aspects to each aspect of minimization. Controlling fires and fire regimes may involve fire suppression and fuel treatments such as prescribed burning or non-fire treatments but also addresses issues associated with unwanted fire starts like arson. Increasing the resistance of assets can mean addressing the design and construction materials of a house or the use of personal protective equipment. Locating or relocating assets can mean leaving an area about to be impacted by fire or choosing a suitable place to live; it can also mean the planning of land use. Assisting recovery and promoting adaptation can involve insuring assets and sharing responsibility for preparedness for an event. There is no single, simple, solution. Perverse outcomes can occur. The number of minimizing techniques used, and the breadth and depth of their application, depends on the geographic mix of asset types. Premises for policy consideration are presented. PMID:23634593

  11. 2010 Worldwide Gasification Database

    DOE Data Explorer

    The 2010 Worldwide Gasification Database describes the current world gasification industry and identifies near-term planned capacity additions. The database lists gasification projects and includes information (e.g., plant location, number and type of gasifiers, syngas capacity, feedstock, and products). The database reveals that the worldwide gasification capacity has continued to grow for the past several decades and is now at 70,817 megawatts thermal (MWth) of syngas output at 144 operating plants with a total of 412 gasifiers.

  12. Perinatal Oxidative Stress May Affect Fetal Ghrelin Levels in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Zhong-Cheng; Bilodeau, Jean-François; Monique Nuyt, Anne; Fraser, William D.; Julien, Pierre; Audibert, Francois; Xiao, Lin; Garofalo, Carole; Levy, Emile

    2015-01-01

    In vitro cell model studies have shown that oxidative stress may affect beta-cell function. It is unknown whether oxidative stress may affect metabolic health in human fetuses/newborns. In a singleton pregnancy cohort (n = 248), we studied maternal (24–28 weeks gestation) and cord plasma biomarkers of oxidative stress [malondialdehyde (MDA), F2-isoprostanes] in relation to fetal metabolic health biomarkers including cord plasma glucose-to-insulin ratio (an indicator of insulin sensitivity), proinsulin-to-insulin ratio (an indicator of beta-cell function), insulin, IGF-I, IGF-II, leptin, adiponectin and ghrelin concentrations. Strong positive correlations were observed between maternal and cord plasma biomarkers of oxidative stress (r = 0.33 for MDA, r = 0.74 for total F2-isoprostanes, all p < 0.0001). Adjusting for gestational age at blood sampling, cord plasma ghrelin concentrations were consistently negatively correlated to oxidative stress biomarkers in maternal (r = −0.32, p < 0.0001 for MDA; r = −0.31, p < 0.0001 for F2-isoprostanes) or cord plasma (r = −0.13, p = 0.04 for MDA; r = −0.32, p < 0.0001 for F2-isoprostanes). Other fetal metabolic health biomarkers were not correlated to oxidative stress. Adjusting for maternal and pregnancy characteristics, similar associations were observed. Our study provides the first preliminary evidence suggesting that oxidative stress may affect fetal ghrelin levels in humans. The implications in developmental “programming” the vulnerability to metabolic syndrome related disorders remain to be elucidated. PMID:26643495

  13. Recombination affects accumulation of damaging and disease-associated mutations in human populations.

    PubMed

    Hussin, Julie G; Hodgkinson, Alan; Idaghdour, Youssef; Grenier, Jean-Christophe; Goulet, Jean-Philippe; Gbeha, Elias; Hip-Ki, Elodie; Awadalla, Philip

    2015-04-01

    Many decades of theory have demonstrated that, in non-recombining systems, slightly deleterious mutations accumulate non-reversibly, potentially driving the extinction of many asexual species. Non-recombining chromosomes in sexual organisms are thought to have degenerated in a similar fashion; however, it is not clear the extent to which damaging mutations accumulate along chromosomes with highly variable rates of crossing over. Using high-coverage sequencing data from over 1,400 individuals in the 1000 Genomes and CARTaGENE projects, we show that recombination rate modulates the distribution of putatively deleterious variants across the entire human genome. Exons in regions of low recombination are significantly enriched for deleterious and disease-associated variants, a signature varying in strength across worldwide human populations with different demographic histories. Regions with low recombination rates are enriched for highly conserved genes with essential cellular functions and show an excess of mutations with demonstrated effects on health, a phenomenon likely affecting disease susceptibility in humans. PMID:25685891

  14. Does acute exposure to mobile phones affect human attention?

    PubMed

    Russo, Riccardo; Fox, Elaine; Cinel, Caterina; Boldini, Angela; Defeyter, Margaret A; Mirshekar-Syahkal, Dariush; Mehta, Amit

    2006-04-01

    Recent studies have indicated that acute exposure to low level radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields generated by mobile phones affects human cognition. However, the relatively small samples used, in addition to methodological problems, make the outcomes of these studies difficult to interpret. In our study we tested a large sample of volunteers (168) using a series of cognitive tasks apparently sensitive to RF exposure (a simple reaction task, a vigilance task, and a subtraction task). Participants performed those tasks twice, in two different sessions. In one session they were exposed to RFs, with half of subjects exposed to GSM signals and the other half exposed to CW signals, while in the other session they were exposed to sham signals. No significant effects of RF exposure on performance for either GSM or CW were found, independent of whether the phone was positioned on the left or on the right side. PMID:16304701

  15. Population Physiologically-Based Pharmacokinetic Modeling for the Human Lactational Transfer of PCB 153 with Consideration of Worldwide Human Biomonitoring Results

    SciTech Connect

    Redding, Laurel E.; Sohn, Michael D.; McKone, Thomas E.; Wang, Shu-Li; Hsieh, Dennis P. H.; Yang, Raymond S. H.

    2008-03-01

    We developed a physiologically based pharmacokinetic model of PCB 153 in women, and predict its transfer via lactation to infants. The model is the first human, population-scale lactational model for PCB 153. Data in the literature provided estimates for model development and for performance assessment. Physiological parameters were taken from a cohort in Taiwan and from reference values in the literature. We estimated partition coefficients based on chemical structure and the lipid content in various body tissues. Using exposure data in Japan, we predicted acquired body burden of PCB 153 at an average childbearing age of 25 years and compare predictions to measurements from studies in multiple countries. Forward-model predictions agree well with human biomonitoring measurements, as represented by summary statistics and uncertainty estimates. The model successfully describes the range of possible PCB 153 dispositions in maternal milk, suggesting a promising option for back estimating doses for various populations. One example of reverse dosimetry modeling was attempted using our PBPK model for possible exposure scenarios in Canadian Inuits who had the highest level of PCB 153 in their milk in the world.

  16. Environmental layout complexity affects neural activity during navigation in humans.

    PubMed

    Slone, Edward; Burles, Ford; Iaria, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Navigating large-scale surroundings is a fundamental ability. In humans, it is commonly assumed that navigational performance is affected by individual differences, such as age, sex, and cognitive strategies adopted for orientation. We recently showed that the layout of the environment itself also influences how well people are able to find their way within it, yet it remains unclear whether differences in environmental complexity are associated with changes in brain activity during navigation. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate how the brain responds to a change in environmental complexity by asking participants to perform a navigation task in two large-scale virtual environments that differed solely in interconnection density, a measure of complexity defined as the average number of directional choices at decision points. The results showed that navigation in the simpler, less interconnected environment was faster and more accurate relative to the complex environment, and such performance was associated with increased activity in a number of brain areas (i.e. precuneus, retrosplenial cortex, and hippocampus) known to be involved in mental imagery, navigation, and memory. These findings provide novel evidence that environmental complexity not only affects navigational behaviour, but also modulates activity in brain regions that are important for successful orientation and navigation. PMID:26990572

  17. Children Worldwide, 1992.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lejeune, Genevieve, Ed.

    1992-01-01

    Each of the three journal issues comprising volume 19 (1992) of "Children Worldwide" focuses on a specific theme. Issue 1 contains six articles about refugee children, including essays about a community self-help approach in Pakistan, unaccompanied minors in Hong Kong, and refugee families raising children in a new culture; guidelines for working…

  18. Worldwide Production of Blackberries

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A survey of blackberry production conducted in 2005 found that an estimated 20,035 ha of blackberries were planted and commercially cultivated worldwide, a 45% increase from estimated area in 1995. In Europe, 7692 ha of black berries were commercially cultivated with Serbia accounting for 69% of the...

  19. Worldwide use of mycoinsecticides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A considerable number of mycoinsecticides and mycoacaricides have been developed worldwide over the past 50 years. At least 12 species or subspecies of fungi have been used as active ingredients in these products for inundative or inoculative biological control. Beauveria bassiana (34%), Metarhizi...

  20. Cross-Species Affective Neuroscience Decoding of the Primal Affective Experiences of Humans and Related Animals

    PubMed Central

    Panksepp, Jaak

    2011-01-01

    Background The issue of whether other animals have internally felt experiences has vexed animal behavioral science since its inception. Although most investigators remain agnostic on such contentious issues, there is now abundant experimental evidence indicating that all mammals have negatively and positively-valenced emotional networks concentrated in homologous brain regions that mediate affective experiences when animals are emotionally aroused. That is what the neuroscientific evidence indicates. Principal Findings The relevant lines of evidence are as follows: 1) It is easy to elicit powerful unconditioned emotional responses using localized electrical stimulation of the brain (ESB); these effects are concentrated in ancient subcortical brain regions. Seven types of emotional arousals have been described; using a special capitalized nomenclature for such primary process emotional systems, they are SEEKING, RAGE, FEAR, LUST, CARE, PANIC/GRIEF and PLAY. 2) These brain circuits are situated in homologous subcortical brain regions in all vertebrates tested. Thus, if one activates FEAR arousal circuits in rats, cats or primates, all exhibit similar fear responses. 3) All primary-process emotional-instinctual urges, even ones as complex as social PLAY, remain intact after radical neo-decortication early in life; thus, the neocortex is not essential for the generation of primary-process emotionality. 4) Using diverse measures, one can demonstrate that animals like and dislike ESB of brain regions that evoke unconditioned instinctual emotional behaviors: Such ESBs can serve as ‘rewards’ and ‘punishments’ in diverse approach and escape/avoidance learning tasks. 5) Comparable ESB of human brains yield comparable affective experiences. Thus, robust evidence indicates that raw primary-process (i.e., instinctual, unconditioned) emotional behaviors and feelings emanate from homologous brain functions in all mammals (see Appendix S1), which are regulated by higher

  1. 1988 worldwide petrochemical directory

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-01-01

    This directory makes available the names, addresses, phone and telex numbers of most of the world's companies which are involved in the petrochemical industry. The directory provides the names of over 14,000 key personnel at over 2,000 plant sites in the United States, Canada, Europe, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East. A company index is provided for easy reference. The Oil and Gas Journal's Worldwide Petrochemical Survey appears in its entirety in this volume.

  2. Temperature Affects Human Sweet Taste via At Least Two Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Nachtigal, Danielle

    2015-01-01

    The reported effects of temperature on sweet taste in humans have generally been small and inconsistent. Here, we describe 3 experiments that follow up a recent finding that cooling from 37 to 21 °C does not reduce the initial sweetness of sucrose but increases sweet taste adaptation. In experiment 1, subjects rated the sweetness of sucrose, glucose, and fructose solutions at 5–41 °C by dipping the tongue tip into the solutions after 0-, 3-, or 10-s pre-exposures to the same solutions or to H2O; experiment 2 compared the effects of temperature on the sweetness of 3 artificial sweeteners (sucralose, aspartame, and saccharin); and experiment 3 employed a flow-controlled gustometer to rule out the possibility the effects of temperature in the preceding experiments were unique to dipping the tongue into a still taste solution. The results (i) confirmed that mild cooling does not attenuate sweetness but can increase sweet taste adaptation; (ii) demonstrated that cooling to 5–12 °C can directly reduce sweetness intensity; and (iii) showed that both effects vary across stimuli. These findings have implications for the TRPM5 hypothesis of thermal effects on sweet taste and raise the possibility that temperature also affects an earlier step in the T1R2–T1R3 transduction cascade. PMID:25963040

  3. Affective Man-Machine Interface: Unveiling Human Emotions through Biosignals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van den Broek, Egon L.; Lisý, Viliam; Janssen, Joris H.; Westerink, Joyce H. D. M.; Schut, Marleen H.; Tuinenbreijer, Kees

    As is known for centuries, humans exhibit an electrical profile. This profile is altered through various psychological and physiological proce-sses, which can be measured through biosignals; e.g., electromyography (EMG) and electrodermal activity (EDA). These biosignals can reveal our emotions and, as such, can serve as an advanced man-machine interface (MMI) for empathic consumer products. However, such a MMI requires the correct classification of biosignals to emotion classes. This chapter starts with an introduction on biosignals for emotion detection. Next, a state-of-the-art review is presented on automatic emotion classification. Moreover, guidelines are presented for affective MMI. Subsequently, a research is presented that explores the use of EDA and three facial EMG signals to determine neutral, positive, negative, and mixed emotions, using recordings of 21 people. A range of techniques is tested, which resulted in a generic framework for automated emotion classification with up to 61.31% correct classification of the four emotion classes, without the need of personal profiles. Among various other directives for future research, the results emphasize the need for parallel processing of multiple biosignals.

  4. Temperature Affects Human Sweet Taste via At Least Two Mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Green, Barry G; Nachtigal, Danielle

    2015-07-01

    The reported effects of temperature on sweet taste in humans have generally been small and inconsistent. Here, we describe 3 experiments that follow up a recent finding that cooling from 37 to 21 °C does not reduce the initial sweetness of sucrose but increases sweet taste adaptation. In experiment 1, subjects rated the sweetness of sucrose, glucose, and fructose solutions at 5-41 °C by dipping the tongue tip into the solutions after 0-, 3-, or 10-s pre-exposures to the same solutions or to H2O; experiment 2 compared the effects of temperature on the sweetness of 3 artificial sweeteners (sucralose, aspartame, and saccharin); and experiment 3 employed a flow-controlled gustometer to rule out the possibility the effects of temperature in the preceding experiments were unique to dipping the tongue into a still taste solution. The results (i) confirmed that mild cooling does not attenuate sweetness but can increase sweet taste adaptation; (ii) demonstrated that cooling to 5-12 °C can directly reduce sweetness intensity; and (iii) showed that both effects vary across stimuli. These findings have implications for the TRPM5 hypothesis of thermal effects on sweet taste and raise the possibility that temperature also affects an earlier step in the T1R2-T1R3 transduction cascade. PMID:25963040

  5. Toward worldwide data sharing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walker, Raymond; Joy, Steven; King, Todd

    2012-07-01

    Over the past decade the nature of space science research has changed dramatically. Earlier investigators could carry out meaningful research by looking at observations from a single instrument on a single spacecraft. Today that is rapidly changing and researchers regularly use data from multiple instruments on multiple spacecraft as well as observations from ground observatories. Increasingly those observations come from missions flown by many countries. Recent advances in distributed data management have made it possible for researchers located around the world to access and use data from multiple nations. By using virtual observatory technology it no longer matters where data are housed they can be freely accessed wherever they reside. In this presentation we will discuss two initiatives designed to make space science data access worldwide. One is the International Planetary Data Alliance (IPDA) and the other is the Heliophysics Data and Model Consortium (HDMC). In both cases the key to worldwide data sharing is adopting common metadata standards. In this talk we will review how these two groups are addressing the worldwide data sharing and their progress in achieving their goals. IPDA and HDMC are two of several efforts to promote broad based data sharing. Talks in the remainder of the symposium will discuss this is more detail.

  6. How Malaria Has Affected the Human Genome and What Human Genetics Can Teach Us about Malaria

    PubMed Central

    Kwiatkowski, Dominic P.

    2005-01-01

    Malaria is a major killer of children worldwide and the strongest known force for evolutionary selection in the recent history of the human genome. The past decade has seen growing evidence of ethnic differences in susceptibility to malaria and of the diverse genetic adaptations to malaria that have arisen in different populations: epidemiological confirmation of the hypotheses that G6PD deficiency, α+ thalassemia, and hemoglobin C protect against malaria mortality; the application of novel haplotype-based techniques demonstrating that malaria-protective genes have been subject to recent positive selection; the first genetic linkage maps of resistance to malaria in experimental murine models; and a growing number of reported associations with resistance and susceptibility to human malaria, particularly in genes involved in immunity, inflammation, and cell adhesion. The challenge for the next decade is to build the global epidemiological infrastructure required for statistically robust genomewide association analysis, as a way of discovering novel mechanisms of protective immunity that can be used in the development of an effective malaria vaccine. PMID:16001361

  7. AAVSO Solar Observers Worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Howe, R.

    2013-06-01

    (Abstract only) For visual solar observers there has been no biological change in the "detector" (human eye) - at century scales (eye + visual cortex) does not change much over time. Our capacity to "integrate" seeing distortions is not just simple averaging! The visual cortex plays an essential role, and until recently only the SDO-HMI (Solar Dynamics Observatory, Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager) has had the capacity to detect the smallest sunspots, called pores. Prior to this the eye was superior to photography and CCD. Imaged data are not directly comparable or substitutable to counts by eye, as the effects of sensor/optical resolution and seeing will have a different influence on the resulting sunspot counts for images when compared to the human eye. Also contributing to the complex task of counting sunspots is differentiating between a sunspot (which is usually defined as having a darker center (umbra) and lighter outer ring (penumbra)) and a pore, made even more complex by the conflicting definitions of the word "pore" in the solar context: "pore" can mean a small spot without penumbra or "pore" can mean a random intergranular blemish that is not a true sunspot. The overall agreement is that the smallest spot size is near 2,000 km or ~3 arc sec, (Loughhead, R. E. and Bray, R. J. 1961, Australian J. Phys., 14, 347). Sunspot size is dictated by granulation dynamics rather than spot size (cancellation of convective motion), and by the lifetime of the pore, which averages from 10 to 30 minutes. There is no specific aperture required for AAVSO observers contributing sunspot observations. However, the detection of the smallest spots is influenced by the resolution of the telescope. Two factors to consider are the theoretical optical resolution (unobstructed aperture), Rayleigh criterion: theta = 138 / D(mm), and Dawes criterion: theta = 116 / D(mm) (http://www.telescope-optics.net/telescope_resolution.htm). However, seeing is variable with time; daytime range will

  8. High pressure treatment of human norovirus-like particles: factors affecting destruction efficacy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Human norovirus (HuNoV) is the leading cause of foodborne diseases worldwide. High pressure processing (HPP) is considered a promising non-thermal technology to inactivate viral pathogens in foods. However, the effectiveness of HPP on inactivating HuNoV remains poorly understood because it cannot be...

  9. 1985 Worldwide Petrochemical Directory

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-01-01

    This directory lists names, addresses, phone numbers, and telex listings. The directory includes more than 14,000 key operating personnel at over 1,900 plant locations in the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. Featured is a special survey prepared with the help of the Oil and Gas Journal that details the petrochemical plant feedstocks, product and capacities. This Worldwide-Petrochemical Survey appears only in its entirety in directory. Also included is an updated petrochemical plant construction survey.

  10. Worldwide petrochemical directory, 1987

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-01-01

    This directory gives the information on the worldwide petrochemical industry in existence. It makes available the names, addresses, phone and telex numbers of most of the world's companies which are involved in the petrochemical industry. The directory provides the names of over 14,000 key personnel at over 2,000 plant sizes in the United States, Canada, Europe, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East. A company index is provided for easy reference. It details current petrochemical plants' feedstocks, products and capacities. The newly updated petrochemical plant construction survey is also provided.

  11. How does human error affect safety in anesthesia?

    PubMed

    Gravenstein, J S

    2000-01-01

    Anesthesia morbidity and mortality, while acceptable, are not zero. Most mishaps have a multifactorial cause in which human error plays a significant part. Good design of anesthesia machines, ventilators, and monitors can prevent some, but not all, human error. Attention to the system in which the errors occur is important. Modern training with simulators is designed to reduce the frequency of human errors and to teach anesthesiologists how to deal with the consequences of such errors. PMID:10601526

  12. Transposable element insertions have strongly affected human evolution

    PubMed Central

    Britten, Roy J.

    2010-01-01

    Comparison of a full collection of the transposable element (TE) sequences of vertebrates with genome sequences shows that the human genome makes 655 perfect full-length matches. The cause is that the human genome contains many active TEs that have caused TE inserts in relatively recent times. These TE inserts in the human genome are several types of young Alus (AluYa5, AluYb8, AluYc1, etc.). Work in many laboratories has shown that such inserts have many effects including changes in gene expression, increases in recombination, and unequal crossover. The time of these very effective changes in the human lineage genome extends back about 4 million years according to these data and very likely much earlier. Rapid human lineage-specific evolution, including brain size is known to have also occurred in the last few million years. Alu insertions likely underlie rapid human lineage evolution. They are known to have many effects. Examples are listed in which TE sequences have influenced human-specific genes. The proposed model is that the many TE insertions created many potentially effective changes and those selected were responsible for a part of the striking human lineage evolution. The combination of the results of these events that were selected during human lineage evolution was apparently effective in producing a successful and rapidly evolving species. PMID:21041622

  13. Formaldehyde Crosses the Human Placenta and Affects Human Trophoblast Differentiation and Hormonal Functions

    PubMed Central

    Pidoux, Guillaume; Gerbaud, Pascale; Guibourdenche, Jean; Thérond, Patrice; Ferreira, Fatima; Simasotchi, Christelle; Evain-Brion, Danièle; Gil, Sophie

    2015-01-01

    The chorionic villus of the human placenta is the source of specific endocrine functions and nutrient exchanges. These activities are ensured by the syncytiotrophobast (ST), which bathes in maternal blood. The ST arises and regenerates throughout pregnancy by fusion of underlying cytotrophoblasts (CT). Any anomaly of ST formation or regeneration can affect pregnancy outcome and fetal growth. Because of its direct interaction with maternal blood, the ST is sensitive to drugs, pollutants and xenohormones. Ex vivo assays of perfused cotyledon show that formaldehyde, a common pollutant present in furniture, paint and plastics, can accumulate in the human placenta and cross to the fetal compartment. By means of RT-qPCR, immunoblot and immunocytochemistry experiments, we demonstrate in vitro that formaldehyde exerts endocrine toxicity on human trophoblasts, including a decrease in the production of protein hormones of pregnancy. In addition, formaldehyde exposure triggered human trophoblast fusion by upregulating syncitin-1 receptor expression (ASC-type amino-acid transporter 2: ASCT2). Moreover, we show that formaldehyde-exposed trophoblasts present an altered redox status associated with oxidative stress, and an increase in ASCT2 expression intended to compensate for this stress. Finally, we demonstrate that the adverse effects of formaldehyde on trophoblast differentiation and fusion are reversed by N-acetyl-L-cysteine (Nac), an antioxidant. PMID:26186596

  14. ANALYSIS OF DISCRIMINATING FACTORS IN HUMAN ACTIVITIES THAT AFFECT EXPOSURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Accurately modeling exposure to particulate matter (PM) and other pollutants ultimately involves the utilization of human location-activity databases to assist in understanding the potential variability of microenvironmental exposures. This paper critically considers and stati...

  15. Improving worldwide reproductive health.

    PubMed

    Geary, J

    1993-01-01

    The 14th International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics World Congress will be held in Montreal, Canada, in 1994, under the auspices of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada. The World Congress will 1) promote and facilitate international cooperation in the field of obstetrics and gynecology, 2) develop and improve the exchange of information and ideas, and 3) encourage the adoption of an international perspective on issues of concern. The 1994 program will survey recent research advances and introduce new equipment, instruments, and pharmaceuticals. Issues addressed will include maternal mortality, reproductive technologies, continuing education, malignancy, family planning, and contraception. The Conference's symposia, industry-sponsored events, and cultural activities are being designed to increase speaker-audience interaction and to stimulate debate and the exchange of views. The continuing education goals are 1) to encourage appropriate research with valid and applicable results and 2) to extend the patient-counseling abilities of participating physicians. Canada's socialized health care system, which carefully scrutinizes new expensive technologies, will be highlighted for the international delegates. The scientific program will include 1) general topics 2) reproductive endocrinology, 3) maternal/fetal medicine, and 4) gynecological oncology. Poster sessions followed by open discourses and free communications sessions will facilitate the exchange of views and information. The overall goal of the conference is to improve reproductive health care for mothers and babies worldwide. PMID:12318476

  16. Chemicals for worldwide aquaculture

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schnick, R.A.

    1991-01-01

    Regulations and therapeutants or other safe chemicals that are approved or acceptable for use in the aquaculture industry in the US, Canada, Europe and Japan are presented, discussing also compounds that are unacceptable for aquaculture. Chemical use practices that could affect public health are considered and details given regarding efforts to increase the number of registered and acceptable chemicals.

  17. Positive Affect and the Complex Dynamics of Human Flourishing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fredrickson, Barbara L.; Losada, Marcial F.

    2005-01-01

    Extending B. L. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada's (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N=188) completed an initial survey to…

  18. Hemispheric Asymmetries in Children's Perception of Nonlinguistic Human Affective Sounds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pollak, Seth D.; Holt, Lori L.; Fries, Alison B. Wismer

    2004-01-01

    In the present work, we developed a database of nonlinguistic sounds that mirror prosodic characteristics typical of language and thus carry affective information, but do not convey linguistic information. In a dichotic-listening task, we used these novel stimuli as a means of disambiguating the relative contributions of linguistic and affective…

  19. Affective neuroscience of pleasure: reward in humans and animals

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Introduction Pleasure and reward are generated by brain circuits that are largely shared between humans and other animals. Discussion Here, we survey some fundamental topics regarding pleasure mechanisms and explicitly compare humans and animals. Conclusion Topics surveyed include liking, wanting, and learning components of reward; brain coding versus brain causing of reward; subjective pleasure versus objective hedonic reactions; roles of orbitofrontal cortex and related cortex regions; subcortical hedonic hotspots for pleasure generation; reappraisals of dopamine and pleasure-electrode controversies; and the relation of pleasure to happiness. PMID:18311558

  20. Mevalonate availability affects human and rat resistance vessel function.

    PubMed Central

    Roullet, J B; Xue, H; Roullet, C M; Fletcher, W S; Cipolla, M J; Harker, C T; McCarron, D A

    1995-01-01

    Previous data in rat conductance vessels indicated that cellular mevalonate contributes to vascular tone and systemic blood pressure control. Using exogenous mevalonate (M) or lovastatin, a 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl CoA (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitor (L), we characterized the role of mevalonate availability in resistance artery function, both in experimental animals and humans. Rat mesenteric artery resistance vessels (MARV, n = 9) were incubated for 48 h with either L, M, L + M, or vehicle (V) and tested for reactivity to NE, serotonin, acetylcholine, atrial natriuretic peptide, and sodium nitroprusside (SNP). Lovastatin increased sensitivity to NE (P < 0.03) and serotonin (P < 0.003), and significantly impaired the response to all three vasodilators. These effects were reversed by co-incubation with mevalonate. Mevalonate alone had no effect. In separate experiments, intravascular free Ca2+ concentration (ivfCa2+) was determined in fura-2AM loaded MARV. Basal ivfCa2+ was increased after a 48-h exposure to L (52.7 +/- 4.6 nM, L, vs. 29.7 +/- 2.4 nM, V, n = 12, P < 0.003), as were ivfCa2+ levels following stimulation with low (100 nM) NE concentrations. Similar ivfCa2+ concentrations were achieved during maximum contraction with NE (10 mM) in both groups. Human resistance arteries of human adipose tissue were also studied. Lovastatin increased the sensitivity to NE (ED50 = 372 +/- 56 nM, V, and 99 +/- 33 nM, L, P < 0.001) and significantly decreased the relaxation to acetylcholine and SNP of human vessels. We conclude that mevalonate availability directly contribute to resistance vessel function and vascular signal transduction systems in both experimental animals and humans. The study calls for the identification of non-sterol, mevalonate-derived vasoactive metabolites, and suggests that disorders of the mevalonate pathway can alter vascular tone and cause hypertension. PMID:7615793

  1. Multiscale factors affecting human attitudes toward snow leopards and wolves.

    PubMed

    Suryawanshi, Kulbhushansingh R; Bhatia, Saloni; Bhatnagar, Yash Veer; Redpath, Stephen; Mishra, Charudutt

    2014-12-01

    The threat posed by large carnivores to livestock and humans makes peaceful coexistence between them difficult. Effective implementation of conservation laws and policies depends on the attitudes of local residents toward the target species. There are many known correlates of human attitudes toward carnivores, but they have only been assessed at the scale of the individual. Because human societies are organized hierarchically, attitudes are presumably influenced by different factors at different scales of social organization, but this scale dependence has not been examined. We used structured interview surveys to quantitatively assess the attitudes of a Buddhist pastoral community toward snow leopards (Panthera uncia) and wolves (Canis lupus). We interviewed 381 individuals from 24 villages within 6 study sites across the high-elevation Spiti Valley in the Indian Trans-Himalaya. We gathered information on key explanatory variables that together captured variation in individual and village-level socioeconomic factors. We used hierarchical linear models to examine how the effect of these factors on human attitudes changed with the scale of analysis from the individual to the community. Factors significant at the individual level were gender, education, and age of the respondent (for wolves and snow leopards), number of income sources in the family (wolves), agricultural production, and large-bodied livestock holdings (snow leopards). At the community level, the significant factors included the number of smaller-bodied herded livestock killed by wolves and mean agricultural production (wolves) and village size and large livestock holdings (snow leopards). Our results show that scaling up from the individual to higher levels of social organization can highlight important factors that influence attitudes of people toward wildlife and toward formal conservation efforts in general. Such scale-specific information can help managers apply conservation measures at

  2. Diurnal Human Activity and Introduced Species Affect Occurrence of Carnivores in a Human-Dominated Landscape.

    PubMed

    Moreira-Arce, Dario; Vergara, Pablo M; Boutin, Stan

    2015-01-01

    Diurnal human activity and domestic dogs in agro-forestry mosaics should theoretically modify the diurnal habitat use patterns of native carnivores, with these effects being scale-dependent. We combined intensive camera trapping data with Bayesian occurrence probability models to evaluate both diurnal and nocturnal patterns of space use by carnivores in a mosaic of land-use types in southern Chile. A total of eight carnivores species were recorded, including human-introduced dogs. During the day the most frequently detected species were the culpeo fox and the cougar. Conversely, during the night, the kodkod and chilla fox were the most detected species. The best supported models showed that native carnivores responded differently to landscape attributes and dogs depending on both the time of day as well as the spatial scale of landscape attributes. The positive effect of native forest cover at 250 m and 500 m radius buffers was stronger during the night for the Darwin's fox and cougar. Road density at 250 m scale negatively affected the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s fox, whereas at 500 m scale roads had a stronger negative effect on the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s foxes and cougars. A positive effect of road density on dog occurrence was evidenced during both night and day. Patch size had a positive effect on cougar occurrence during night whereas it affected negatively the occurrence of culpeo foxes and skunks during day. Dog occurrence had a negative effect on Darwin's fox occurrence during day-time and night-time, whereas its negative effect on the occurrence of cougar was evidenced only during day-time. Carnivore occurrences were not influenced by the proximity to a conservation area. Our results provided support for the hypothesis that diurnal changes to carnivore occurrence were associated with human and dog activity. Landscape planning in our study area should be focused in reducing both the levels of diurnal human activity in native forest remnants

  3. Diurnal Human Activity and Introduced Species Affect Occurrence of Carnivores in a Human-Dominated Landscape

    PubMed Central

    Moreira-Arce, Dario; Vergara, Pablo M.; Boutin, Stan

    2015-01-01

    Diurnal human activity and domestic dogs in agro-forestry mosaics should theoretically modify the diurnal habitat use patterns of native carnivores, with these effects being scale-dependent. We combined intensive camera trapping data with Bayesian occurrence probability models to evaluate both diurnal and nocturnal patterns of space use by carnivores in a mosaic of land-use types in southern Chile. A total of eight carnivores species were recorded, including human-introduced dogs. During the day the most frequently detected species were the culpeo fox and the cougar. Conversely, during the night, the kodkod and chilla fox were the most detected species. The best supported models showed that native carnivores responded differently to landscape attributes and dogs depending on both the time of day as well as the spatial scale of landscape attributes. The positive effect of native forest cover at 250m and 500 m radius buffers was stronger during the night for the Darwin's fox and cougar. Road density at 250m scale negatively affected the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s fox, whereas at 500m scale roads had a stronger negative effect on the diurnal occurrence of Darwin´s foxes and cougars. A positive effect of road density on dog occurrence was evidenced during both night and day. Patch size had a positive effect on cougar occurrence during night whereas it affected negatively the occurrence of culpeo foxes and skunks during day. Dog occurrence had a negative effect on Darwin's fox occurrence during day-time and night-time, whereas its negative effect on the occurrence of cougar was evidenced only during day-time. Carnivore occurrences were not influenced by the proximity to a conservation area. Our results provided support for the hypothesis that diurnal changes to carnivore occurrence were associated with human and dog activity. Landscape planning in our study area should be focused in reducing both the levels of diurnal human activity in native forest remnants and

  4. Timing of Influenza A(H5N1) in Poultry and Humans and Seasonal Influenza Activity Worldwide, 2004–2013

    PubMed Central

    Durand, Lizette O.; Glew, Patrick; Gross, Diane; Kasper, Matthew; Trock, Susan; Kim, Inkyu K.; Bresee, Joseph S.; Donis, Ruben; Uyeki, Timothy M.; Widdowson, Marc-Alain

    2015-01-01

    Co-circulation of influenza A(H5N1) and seasonal influenza viruses among humans and animals could lead to co-infections, reassortment, and emergence of novel viruses with pandemic potential. We assessed the timing of subtype H5N1 outbreaks among poultry, human H5N1 cases, and human seasonal influenza in 8 countries that reported 97% of all human H5N1 cases and 90% of all poultry H5N1 outbreaks. In these countries, most outbreaks among poultry (7,001/11,331, 62%) and half of human cases (313/625, 50%) occurred during January–March. Human H5N1 cases occurred in 167 (45%) of 372 months during which outbreaks among poultry occurred, compared with 59 (10%) of 574 months that had no outbreaks among poultry. Human H5N1 cases also occurred in 59 (22%) of 267 months during seasonal influenza periods. To reduce risk for co-infection, surveillance and control of H5N1 should be enhanced during January–March, when H5N1 outbreaks typically occur and overlap with seasonal influenza virus circulation. PMID:25625302

  5. STREPTOCOCCUS: A WORLDWIDE FISH HEALTH PROBLEM

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Streptococcus iniae and S. agalactiae are important emergent pathogens that affect many fish species worldwide, especially in warm-water regions. In marine and freshwater systems, these Gram-positive bacteria cause significant economic losses, estimated at hundreds of millions of dollars annually. ...

  6. Skin Blood Perfusion and Oxygenation Colour Affect Perceived Human Health

    PubMed Central

    Stephen, Ian D.; Coetzee, Vinet; Law Smith, Miriam; Perrett, David I.

    2009-01-01

    Skin blood perfusion and oxygenation depends upon cardiovascular, hormonal and circulatory health in humans and provides socio-sexual signals of underlying physiology, dominance and reproductive status in some primates. We allowed participants to manipulate colour calibrated facial photographs along empirically-measured oxygenated and deoxygenated blood colour axes both separately and simultaneously, to optimise healthy appearance. Participants increased skin blood colour, particularly oxygenated, above basal levels to optimise healthy appearance. We show, therefore, that skin blood perfusion and oxygenation influence perceived health in a way that may be important to mate choice. PMID:19337378

  7. Disturbances of electrodynamic activity affect abortion in human

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jandová, A.; Nedbalová, M.; Kobilková, J.; Čoček, A.; Dohnalová, A.; Cifra, M.; Pokorný, J.

    2011-12-01

    Biochemical research of biological systems is highly developed, and it has disclosed a spectrum of chemical reactions, genetic processes, and the pathological development of various diseases. The fundamental hypothesis of physical processes in biological systems, in particular of coherent electrically polar vibrations and electromagnetic activity, was formulated by H. Fröhlich he assumed connection of cancer process with degradation of coherent electromagnetic activity. But the questions of cellular structures capable of the coherent electrical polar oscillation, mechanisms of energy supply, and the specific role of the endogenous electromagnetic fields in transport, organisation, interactions, and information transfer remained open. The nature of physical disturbances caused by some diseases (including the recurrent abortion in humans and the cancer) was unknown. We have studied the reasons of recurrent abortions in humans by means of the cell mediated immunity (using immunologic active RNA prepared from blood of inbred laboratory mice strain C3H/H2K, infected with the lactate dehydrogenase elevating virus-LD V) and the cytogenetic examination from karyotype pictures. The recurrent abortion group contained women with dg. spontaneous abortion (n = 24) and the control group was composed of 30 healthy pregnant women. Our hypothesis was related to quality of endometrium in relation to nidation of the blastocyst. The energetic insufficiency (ATP) inhibits normal development of fetus and placenta. We hope that these ideas might have impact on further research, which could provide background for effective interdisciplinary cooperation of malignant and non-malignant diseases.

  8. Functional TLR5 genetic variants affect human colorectal cancer survival.

    PubMed

    Klimosch, Sascha N; Försti, Asta; Eckert, Jana; Knezevic, Jelena; Bevier, Melanie; von Schönfels, Witigo; Heits, Nils; Walter, Jessica; Hinz, Sebastian; Lascorz, Jesus; Hampe, Jochen; Hartl, Dominik; Frick, Julia-Stefanie; Hemminki, Kari; Schafmayer, Clemens; Weber, Alexander N R

    2013-12-15

    Toll-like receptors (TLR) are overexpressed on many types of cancer cells, including colorectal cancer cells, but little is known about the functional relevance of these immune regulatory molecules in malignant settings. Here, we report frequent single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) in the flagellin receptor TLR5 and the TLR downstream effector molecules MyD88 and TIRAP that are associated with altered survival in a large cohort of Caucasian patients with colorectal cancer (n = 613). MYD88 rs4988453, a SNP that maps to a promoter region shared with the acetyl coenzyme-A acyl-transferase-1 (ACAA1), was associated with decreased survival of patients with colorectal cancer and altered transcriptional activity of the proximal genes. In the TLR5 gene, rs5744174/F616L was associated with increased survival, whereas rs2072493/N592S was associated with decreased survival. Both rs2072493/N592S and rs5744174/F616L modulated TLR5 signaling in response to flagellin or to different commensal and pathogenic intestinal bacteria. Notably, we observed a reduction in flagellin-induced p38 phosphorylation, CD62L shedding, and elevated expression of interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-1β mRNA in human primary immune cells from TLR5 616LL homozygote carriers, as compared with 616FF carriers. This finding suggested that the well-documented effect of cytokines like IL-6 on colorectal cancer progression might be mediated by TLR5 genotype-dependent flagellin sensing. Our results establish an important link between TLR signaling and human colorectal cancer with relevance for biomarker and therapy development. PMID:24154872

  9. Bulletin Board Ideas: Worldwide Scientific Events

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schiffman, Maurice K.

    1977-01-01

    Describes a bulletin board activity that identifies scientific phenomena occurring worldwide during the school year. A map of the world is marked with colored pins as students find news information of places and kind of event (e.g.; volcanoes, floods, crop failures, human epidemics). (CS)

  10. Pregnancy does not affect human olfactory detection thresholds.

    PubMed

    Cameron, E Leslie

    2014-02-01

    Hyperosmia is suspected in pregnancy; however, no empirical study using validated measures of olfactory function has clearly confirmed the anecdotal reports of this phenomenon. The goal of the current study is to compare the olfactory sensitivity of pregnant women to that of nonpregnant women and men. All participants rated their sense of smell and pregnant women listed the odors to which they were most sensitive. Detection thresholds were measured using a well-validated protocol. A group of pregnant and nonpregnant women was studied longitudinally using a signal detection procedure designed to detect small differences in sensitivity. Pregnant women, particularly in the 1st trimester, rated their sense of smell to be higher than nonpregnant women and men and indicated many (primarily unpleasant) odors to which they were more sensitive. Women rated their sense of smell higher than men. However, there was no sex difference in thresholds and neither thresholds nor signal detection measures of sensitivity were significantly affected by either sex or pregnancy status. The implications of the lack of relationship between self-report and measures of olfactory sensitivity, particularly in pregnancy, are discussed. PMID:24302690

  11. Noisy human neighbours affect where urban monkeys live

    PubMed Central

    Duarte, Marina H. L.; Vecci, Marco A.; Hirsch, André; Young, Robert J.

    2011-01-01

    Urban areas and many natural habitats are being dominated by a new selection pressure: anthropogenic noise. The ongoing expansion of urban areas, roads and airports throughout the world makes the noise almost omnipresent. Urbanization and the increase of noise levels form a major threat to living conditions in and around cities. Insight into the behavioural strategies of urban survivors may explain the sensitivity of other species to urban selection pressures. Here, we show that urban black-tufted marmosets (Callithrix penicillata) living in noisy urban areas may select their home-range based primarily on ambient noise level. We have tested the hypothesis that the noise from vehicular traffic and visitors in an urban park in Brazil influences the use of home-range (space) by urban marmosets. Marmosets even avoided noisy areas with high food availability. In addition, they systematically preferred the quieter areas even with dynamic changes in the acoustic landscape of the park between weekdays and Sundays (no observations were made on Saturdays). These data provide evidence that the use of home-range by wild animals can be affected by a potential aversive stimulus such as noise pollution. PMID:21715396

  12. Noisy human neighbours affect where urban monkeys live.

    PubMed

    Duarte, Marina H L; Vecci, Marco A; Hirsch, André; Young, Robert J

    2011-12-23

    Urban areas and many natural habitats are being dominated by a new selection pressure: anthropogenic noise. The ongoing expansion of urban areas, roads and airports throughout the world makes the noise almost omnipresent. Urbanization and the increase of noise levels form a major threat to living conditions in and around cities. Insight into the behavioural strategies of urban survivors may explain the sensitivity of other species to urban selection pressures. Here, we show that urban black-tufted marmosets (Callithrix penicillata) living in noisy urban areas may select their home-range based primarily on ambient noise level. We have tested the hypothesis that the noise from vehicular traffic and visitors in an urban park in Brazil influences the use of home-range (space) by urban marmosets. Marmosets even avoided noisy areas with high food availability. In addition, they systematically preferred the quieter areas even with dynamic changes in the acoustic landscape of the park between weekdays and Sundays (no observations were made on Saturdays). These data provide evidence that the use of home-range by wild animals can be affected by a potential aversive stimulus such as noise pollution. PMID:21715396

  13. MISR Satellite Observations of Aerosol Types Affecting Human Health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kalashnikova, O. V.; Franklin, M.; Garay, M. J.; Diner, D. J.

    2015-12-01

    Ground-based observations of pollutants and concentrations of particulate matter (PM), that includes small particles designated PM2.5 and dust-dominated PM10, are the gold standard in studies of environmental impacts on human health. However, because monitoring stations are costly, they typically provide only limited spatial coverage, especially in rural and remote areas. We will demonstrate how data from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) instrument that has been flying on NASA's Terra Earth Observing System satellite since early 2000 can be used to provide estimates of surface PM types. The current MISR operational aerosol retrieval uses a combination of multi-spectral and multi-angle data to retrieve aerosol optical depth (AOD) and particle property information (including dust AOD) globally at 17.6 km spatial resolution. Using the same algorithm with data collected in all 36-channels at 275 m resolution (Local Mode), which is available over greater Los Angeles area, and also was activated during 2013 DISCOVER-AQ California field campaign, high-resolution 4.4 km aerosol retrievals were performed in addition to the standard 17.6 km retrievals. The 4.4 km spatial resolution of the PM information data is fine enough to be able to resolve local differences in PM loading that may be important for understanding regional health effects of pollution in the region. In particular, we demonstrate that MISR high-resolution AOD retrievals are in better agreement with ground-based aerosol observations and reveal more details about the aerosol spatial variability compared to the MISR standard 17.6 km product. Then we will discuss techniques and show examples of the application of high-resolution MISR data to provide estimates of surface PM for the greater Los Angeles area in 2008 and for California San Joaquin Valley during the 2013 DISCOVER-AQ field campaign. Finally, we will discuss future NASA instruments that will provide new information allowing for better

  14. Aging affects the cardiovascular responses to cold stress in humans

    PubMed Central

    Hess, Kari L.; Wilson, Thad E.; Sauder, Charity L.; Gao, Zhaohui; Ray, Chester A.

    2009-01-01

    Cardiovascular-related mortality peaks during cold winter months, particularly in older adults. Acute physiological responses, such as increases in blood pressure, in response to cold exposure may contribute to these associations. To determine whether the blood pressure-raising effect (pressor response) of non-internal body temperature-reducing cold stress is greater with age, we measured physiological responses to 20 min of superficial skin cooling, via water-perfused suit, in 12 younger [25 ± 1 (SE) yr old] and 12 older (65 ± 2 yr old) adults. We found that superficial skin cooling elicited an increase in blood pressure from resting levels (pressor response; P < 0.05) in younger and older adults. However, the magnitude of this pressor response (systolic and mean blood pressure) was more than twofold higher in older adults (P < 0.05 vs. younger adults). The magnitude of the pressor response was similar at peripheral (brachial) and central (estimated in the aorta) measurement sites. Regression analysis revealed that aortic pulse wave velocity, a measure of central arterial stiffness obtained before cooling, was the best predictor of the increased pressor response to superficial skin cooling in older adults, explaining ∼63% of its variability. These results indicate that there is a greater pressor response to non-internal body temperature-reducing cold stress with age in humans that may be mediated by increased levels of central arterial stiffness. PMID:19679742

  15. Mimicry profiles are affected by human-induced habitat changes.

    PubMed Central

    Azmeh, S; Owen, J; Sørensen, K; Grewcock, D; Gilbert, F

    1998-01-01

    Mimicry theory predicts that mimics in a Batesian mimicry complex evolve to resemble models closely, and that there is a limit on the numbers of mimics relative to models. For hoverflies (Diptera: Syrphidae), supposed mimics of social wasps (Hymenoptera: Vespidae, neither of these is true; many mimics are imperfect and in the UK and Europe they outnumber their models manifold. We hypothesized that the high abundance of mimics relative to models in the UK may be the result not just of mimic model dynamics, but of habitat changes caused by humans. Most of the larvae of poor mimics are aphidophagous, and changes from ancient forest to agricultural and/or urban habitats may have vastly augmented aphid numbers. Using new and literature data, we compared mimicry profiles of habitats differing in their degree of habitat disturbance. In both cases more highly disturbed habitats had proportionally more poor mimics and fewer high-fidelity mimics than less disturbed habitats. This supports the hypothesis that habitat change has an effect on model to mimic ratios. PMID:9881474

  16. Family Poverty Affects the Rate of Human Infant Brain Growth

    PubMed Central

    Hanson, Jamie L.; Hair, Nicole; Shen, Dinggang G.; Shi, Feng; Gilmore, John H.; Wolfe, Barbara L.; Pollak, Seth D.

    2013-01-01

    Living in poverty places children at very high risk for problems across a variety of domains, including schooling, behavioral regulation, and health. Aspects of cognitive functioning, such as information processing, may underlie these kinds of problems. How might poverty affect the brain functions underlying these cognitive processes? Here, we address this question by observing and analyzing repeated measures of brain development of young children between five months and four years of age from economically diverse backgrounds (n = 77). In doing so, we have the opportunity to observe changes in brain growth as children begin to experience the effects of poverty. These children underwent MRI scanning, with subjects completing between 1 and 7 scans longitudinally. Two hundred and three MRI scans were divided into different tissue types using a novel image processing algorithm specifically designed to analyze brain data from young infants. Total gray, white, and cerebral (summation of total gray and white matter) volumes were examined along with volumes of the frontal, parietal, temporal, and occipital lobes. Infants from low-income families had lower volumes of gray matter, tissue critical for processing of information and execution of actions. These differences were found for both the frontal and parietal lobes. No differences were detected in white matter, temporal lobe volumes, or occipital lobe volumes. In addition, differences in brain growth were found to vary with socioeconomic status (SES), with children from lower-income households having slower trajectories of growth during infancy and early childhood. Volumetric differences were associated with the emergence of disruptive behavioral problems. PMID:24349025

  17. Family poverty affects the rate of human infant brain growth.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Jamie L; Hair, Nicole; Shen, Dinggang G; Shi, Feng; Gilmore, John H; Wolfe, Barbara L; Pollak, Seth D

    2013-01-01

    Living in poverty places children at very high risk for problems across a variety of domains, including schooling, behavioral regulation, and health. Aspects of cognitive functioning, such as information processing, may underlie these kinds of problems. How might poverty affect the brain functions underlying these cognitive processes? Here, we address this question by observing and analyzing repeated measures of brain development of young children between five months and four years of age from economically diverse backgrounds (n = 77). In doing so, we have the opportunity to observe changes in brain growth as children begin to experience the effects of poverty. These children underwent MRI scanning, with subjects completing between 1 and 7 scans longitudinally. Two hundred and three MRI scans were divided into different tissue types using a novel image processing algorithm specifically designed to analyze brain data from young infants. Total gray, white, and cerebral (summation of total gray and white matter) volumes were examined along with volumes of the frontal, parietal, temporal, and occipital lobes. Infants from low-income families had lower volumes of gray matter, tissue critical for processing of information and execution of actions. These differences were found for both the frontal and parietal lobes. No differences were detected in white matter, temporal lobe volumes, or occipital lobe volumes. In addition, differences in brain growth were found to vary with socioeconomic status (SES), with children from lower-income households having slower trajectories of growth during infancy and early childhood. Volumetric differences were associated with the emergence of disruptive behavioral problems. PMID:24349025

  18. Glycolytic pathway affects differentiation of human monocytes to regulatory macrophages.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Hiroaki; Hisamatsu, Tadakazu; Chiba, Sayako; Mori, Kiyoto; Kitazume, Mina T; Shimamura, Katsuyoshi; Nakamoto, Nobuhiro; Matsuoka, Katsuyoshi; Ebinuma, Hirotoshi; Naganuma, Makoto; Kanai, Takanori

    2016-08-01

    Cellular metabolic state and individual metabolites have been reported to regulate the functional phenotype of immune cells. Cytokine production by regulatory and inflammatory macrophages is thought to mainly involve fatty acid oxidation and glycolysis, respectively, which fuel mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. However, the association between metabolic pathways and the acquisition of specific macrophage phenotypes remains unclear. This study assessed the relationship between glycolysis and the differentiation of regulatory macrophages. Human monocytes derived from peripheral blood were cultured in vitro in the presence of macrophage colony-stimulating factor to yield regulatory macrophages (M-Mϕs). M-Mϕs had a regulatory macrophage phenotype and produced substantial IL-10 following stimulation with lipopolysaccharide. To analyze the role of glycolysis, glycolysis inhibitors (2-deoxy-d-glucose or dichloroacetate) were added during M-Mϕ differentiation. These cells cultured with glycolysis inhibitors produced significantly lower amounts of IL-10, but produced significantly higher amounts of IL-6 compared to M-Mϕs differentiated without glycolysis inhibitors. Such phenotypic change of M-Mϕs differentiated with glycolysis inhibitors was associated with the alteration of the gene expression pattern related to macrophage differentiation, such as CSF1, MMP9 and VEGFA. M-Mϕs differentiated with glycolysis inhibitors seemed to retain plasticity to become IL-10 producing cells. Furthermore, increased level of pyruvate in culture medium was found to partially reverse the effects of glycolysis inhibitors on cytokine production of M-Mϕs. These results indicate the importance of glycolytic pathway in macrophage differentiation to a regulatory phenotype, and pyruvate may be one of the key metabolites in this process. PMID:27208804

  19. Primary Aluminum Plants Worldwide - 1998

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    1999-01-01

    The 1990 U.S. Bureau of Mines publication, Primary Aluminum Plants Worldwide, has been updated and is now available. The 1998 USGS edition of Primary Aluminum Plants Worldwide is published in two parts. Part I—Detail contains information on individual primary smelter capacity, location, ownership, sources of energy, and other miscellaneous information. Part II—Summary summarizes the capacity data by country

  20. The Child in the Process: Affecting His Human Potential through LIFE.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sheridan, Vivian A.; Spidal, David A.

    Language materials of the Language Improvement to Facilitate Education (LIFE) Project are described as carefully sequenced curriculum materials which use visuals to educate deaf children in the affective domain. The affective domain is defined as the area of human experiences related to interest, appreciation, attitudes, adjustments and values;…

  1. A Meta-Analysis and Systematic Review on the Association between Human Papillomavirus (Types 16 and 18) Infection and Esophageal Cancer Worldwide

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jing; Zhao, Lei; Yan, Han; Che, Juanjuan; Huihui, Li; Jun, Wu

    2016-01-01

    Background Esophageal cancer is a common and aggressive malignant tumor. This study aimed to investigate the association between human papillomavirus (HPV) Types 16 and 18 and esophageal carcinoma (EC) in the world population by conducting a meta-analysis. Materials and Methods Computerized bibliographic and manual searches were performed to identify all eligible literatures between 1982 and 2014. PUBMED (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/) and CNKI (http://www.cnki.net/) were the primary sources of case-control studies, and key words used include human papillomavirus, HPV, esophageal, esophagus, cancer, carcinoma, and tumor. All searches were performed by reviewing articles and abstracts cited in the published systematic reviews and case-control studies. Prospective studies that reported relative risk (RR) estimates with 95% CIs for the association between HPV and EC were included. Results Thirty-three randomized studies were identified, and the main features of these trials were included in this systematic review. HPV infection rate in the EC group was 46.5%, while HPV infection rate in the control group was 26.2% (OR = 1.62; 95% CI, 1.33–1.98). In China, the merger OR value was 1.62 (95% CI: 1.26–2.07); while in the Asian region, the merger OR value was 1.63 (95% CI: 1.29–2.04). There were statistical differences in HPV testing due to different detection methods such as PCR, IHC and ISH. In the PCR detection group, the merger OR value was 1.61 (95% CI: 1.33–1.95). Conclusions These results indicate that HPV infection and the incidence of EC are closely associated. PMID:27409078

  2. Higher-order Multivariable Polynomial Regression to Estimate Human Affective States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Jie; Chen, Tong; Liu, Guangyuan; Yang, Jiemin

    2016-03-01

    From direct observations, facial, vocal, gestural, physiological, and central nervous signals, estimating human affective states through computational models such as multivariate linear-regression analysis, support vector regression, and artificial neural network, have been proposed in the past decade. In these models, linear models are generally lack of precision because of ignoring intrinsic nonlinearities of complex psychophysiological processes; and nonlinear models commonly adopt complicated algorithms. To improve accuracy and simplify model, we introduce a new computational modeling method named as higher-order multivariable polynomial regression to estimate human affective states. The study employs standardized pictures in the International Affective Picture System to induce thirty subjects’ affective states, and obtains pure affective patterns of skin conductance as input variables to the higher-order multivariable polynomial model for predicting affective valence and arousal. Experimental results show that our method is able to obtain efficient correlation coefficients of 0.98 and 0.96 for estimation of affective valence and arousal, respectively. Moreover, the method may provide certain indirect evidences that valence and arousal have their brain’s motivational circuit origins. Thus, the proposed method can serve as a novel one for efficiently estimating human affective states.

  3. Higher-order Multivariable Polynomial Regression to Estimate Human Affective States.

    PubMed

    Wei, Jie; Chen, Tong; Liu, Guangyuan; Yang, Jiemin

    2016-01-01

    From direct observations, facial, vocal, gestural, physiological, and central nervous signals, estimating human affective states through computational models such as multivariate linear-regression analysis, support vector regression, and artificial neural network, have been proposed in the past decade. In these models, linear models are generally lack of precision because of ignoring intrinsic nonlinearities of complex psychophysiological processes; and nonlinear models commonly adopt complicated algorithms. To improve accuracy and simplify model, we introduce a new computational modeling method named as higher-order multivariable polynomial regression to estimate human affective states. The study employs standardized pictures in the International Affective Picture System to induce thirty subjects' affective states, and obtains pure affective patterns of skin conductance as input variables to the higher-order multivariable polynomial model for predicting affective valence and arousal. Experimental results show that our method is able to obtain efficient correlation coefficients of 0.98 and 0.96 for estimation of affective valence and arousal, respectively. Moreover, the method may provide certain indirect evidences that valence and arousal have their brain's motivational circuit origins. Thus, the proposed method can serve as a novel one for efficiently estimating human affective states. PMID:26996254

  4. Higher-order Multivariable Polynomial Regression to Estimate Human Affective States

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Jie; Chen, Tong; Liu, Guangyuan; Yang, Jiemin

    2016-01-01

    From direct observations, facial, vocal, gestural, physiological, and central nervous signals, estimating human affective states through computational models such as multivariate linear-regression analysis, support vector regression, and artificial neural network, have been proposed in the past decade. In these models, linear models are generally lack of precision because of ignoring intrinsic nonlinearities of complex psychophysiological processes; and nonlinear models commonly adopt complicated algorithms. To improve accuracy and simplify model, we introduce a new computational modeling method named as higher-order multivariable polynomial regression to estimate human affective states. The study employs standardized pictures in the International Affective Picture System to induce thirty subjects’ affective states, and obtains pure affective patterns of skin conductance as input variables to the higher-order multivariable polynomial model for predicting affective valence and arousal. Experimental results show that our method is able to obtain efficient correlation coefficients of 0.98 and 0.96 for estimation of affective valence and arousal, respectively. Moreover, the method may provide certain indirect evidences that valence and arousal have their brain’s motivational circuit origins. Thus, the proposed method can serve as a novel one for efficiently estimating human affective states. PMID:26996254

  5. Worldwide Discoveries Help People Everywhere

    MedlinePlus

    ... Home Current Issue Past Issues Special Section Worldwide Discoveries Help People Everywhere Past Issues / Spring 2008 Table ... shows examples of discoveries and their impact. Diseases Discoveries The Benefits for All Americans Huntington's Disease Venezuela— ...

  6. Is it the real deal? Perception of virtual characters versus humans: an affective cognitive neuroscience perspective

    PubMed Central

    de Borst, Aline W.; de Gelder, Beatrice

    2015-01-01

    Recent developments in neuroimaging research support the increased use of naturalistic stimulus material such as film, avatars, or androids. These stimuli allow for a better understanding of how the brain processes information in complex situations while maintaining experimental control. While avatars and androids are well suited to study human cognition, they should not be equated to human stimuli. For example, the uncanny valley hypothesis theorizes that artificial agents with high human-likeness may evoke feelings of eeriness in the human observer. Here we review if, when, and how the perception of human-like avatars and androids differs from the perception of humans and consider how this influences their utilization as stimulus material in social and affective neuroimaging studies. First, we discuss how the appearance of virtual characters affects perception. When stimuli are morphed across categories from non-human to human, the most ambiguous stimuli, rather than the most human-like stimuli, show prolonged classification times and increased eeriness. Human-like to human stimuli show a positive linear relationship with familiarity. Secondly, we show that expressions of emotions in human-like avatars can be perceived similarly to human emotions, with corresponding behavioral, physiological and neuronal activations, with exception of physical dissimilarities. Subsequently, we consider if and when one perceives differences in action representation by artificial agents versus humans. Motor resonance and predictive coding models may account for empirical findings, such as an interference effect on action for observed human-like, natural moving characters. However, the expansion of these models to explain more complex behavior, such as empathy, still needs to be investigated in more detail. Finally, we broaden our outlook to social interaction, where virtual reality stimuli can be utilized to imitate complex social situations. PMID:26029133

  7. Human and nature-caused hazards: the affect heuristic causes biased decisions.

    PubMed

    Siegrist, Michael; Sütterlin, Bernadette

    2014-08-01

    People are more concerned about the negative consequences of human hazards compared with natural hazards. Results of four experiments show that the same negative outcome (e.g., number of birds killed by an oil spill) was more negatively evaluated when caused by humans than when caused by nature. Results further show that when identical risk information was provided, participants evaluated nuclear power more negatively compared with solar power. The affect associated with the hazard per se influenced the interpretation of the new information. Furthermore, the affect experienced in the situation fully mediated the evaluation of the negative outcomes of a hazard. People's reliance on the affect heuristic is a challenge for acceptance of cost-benefit analyses because equally negative outcomes are differently evaluated depending on the cause. Symbolically significant information and the affect evoked by this information may result in biased and riskier decisions. PMID:24576178

  8. Examining dog-human play: the characteristics, affect, and vocalizations of a unique interspecific interaction.

    PubMed

    Horowitz, Alexandra; Hecht, Julie

    2016-07-01

    Despite the growing interest in research on the interaction between humans and dogs, only a very few research projects focus on the routines between dogs and their owners. In this study, we investigated one such routine: dog-human play. Dyadic interspecific play is known to be a common interaction between owner and charge, but the details of what counts as play have not been thoroughly researched. Similarly, though people represent that "play" is pleasurable, no study has yet undertaken to determine whether different forms of play are associated with different affective states. Thus, we aimed to generate an inventory of the forms of dyadic play, the vocalizations within play, and to investigate the relationship of affect to elements of play. Via a global citizen science project, we solicited videotapes of dog-human play sessions from dog owners. We coded 187 play bouts via frame-by-frame video playback. We then assessed the relationship between various intra-bout variables and owner affect (positive or neutral) during play (dog affect was overwhelmingly positive). Amount of physical contact ("touch"), level of activity of owner ("movement"), and physical closeness of dog-owner dyad ("proximity") were highly correlated with positive affect. Owner vocalizations were found to contain different elements in positive- and neutral-affect play. One novel category of play, "tease", was found. We conclude that not all play is created equal: the experience of play to the owner participant is strongly related to a few identifiable characteristics of the interaction. PMID:27003698

  9. The Identification of Factors Affecting the Development and Practice of School-Based Counseling in Different National Contexts: A Grounded Theory Study Using a Worldwide Sample of Descriptive Journal Articles and Book Chapters

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, Ian; Lauterbach, Alexandra; Carey, John

    2015-01-01

    A grounded theory methodology was used to analyze articles and book chapters describing the development and practice of school-based counseling in 25 different countries in order to identify the factors that affect development and practice. An 11-factor analytic framework was developed. Factors include: Cultural Factors, National Needs, Larger…

  10. World-Wide Information Networks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Samuelson, Kjell A. H. W.

    The future paths of research and development towards world-wide, automated information networks in full operation are examined. From international networked planning and projects under way it appears that exploratory as well as normative approaches have been taken. To some extent adequate technolgical facilities have already come into existence…

  11. Human genetics. The genetics of Mexico recapitulates Native American substructure and affects biomedical traits.

    PubMed

    Moreno-Estrada, Andrés; Gignoux, Christopher R; Fernández-López, Juan Carlos; Zakharia, Fouad; Sikora, Martin; Contreras, Alejandra V; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Sandoval, Karla; Eng, Celeste; Romero-Hidalgo, Sandra; Ortiz-Tello, Patricia; Robles, Victoria; Kenny, Eimear E; Nuño-Arana, Ismael; Barquera-Lozano, Rodrigo; Macín-Pérez, Gastón; Granados-Arriola, Julio; Huntsman, Scott; Galanter, Joshua M; Via, Marc; Ford, Jean G; Chapela, Rocío; Rodriguez-Cintron, William; Rodríguez-Santana, Jose R; Romieu, Isabelle; Sienra-Monge, Juan José; del Rio Navarro, Blanca; London, Stephanie J; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés; Garcia-Herrera, Rodrigo; Estrada, Karol; Hidalgo-Miranda, Alfredo; Jimenez-Sanchez, Gerardo; Carnevale, Alessandra; Soberón, Xavier; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Rangel-Villalobos, Héctor; Silva-Zolezzi, Irma; Burchard, Esteban Gonzalez; Bustamante, Carlos D

    2014-06-13

    Mexico harbors great cultural and ethnic diversity, yet fine-scale patterns of human genome-wide variation from this region remain largely uncharacterized. We studied genomic variation within Mexico from over 1000 individuals representing 20 indigenous and 11 mestizo populations. We found striking genetic stratification among indigenous populations within Mexico at varying degrees of geographic isolation. Some groups were as differentiated as Europeans are from East Asians. Pre-Columbian genetic substructure is recapitulated in the indigenous ancestry of admixed mestizo individuals across the country. Furthermore, two independently phenotyped cohorts of Mexicans and Mexican Americans showed a significant association between subcontinental ancestry and lung function. Thus, accounting for fine-scale ancestry patterns is critical for medical and population genetic studies within Mexico, in Mexican-descent populations, and likely in many other populations worldwide. PMID:24926019

  12. Affective Education: A Teacher's Manual to Promote Student Self-Actualization and Human Relations Skills.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Snyder, Thomas R.

    This teacher's manual presents affective education as a program to promote student self-actualization and human relations skills. Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs and Erik Erikson's life stages of psychosocial development form the conceptual base for this program. The goals and objectives of this manual are concerned with problem-solving…

  13. Definition and Measurement in the Affective Domain: Appreciation of Human Accomplishments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Paul B.; Beers, Joan S.

    The first three levels of the taxonomy in the affective domain guided the development of two inventories--the Pennsylvania Inventory of Cultural Appreciations (PICA) for 11th graders and Things People Do (TPD) for 5th graders--to measure appreciation of human accomplishments in seven areas: politics, sciences, sports, literature, visual arts,…

  14. Human-Computer Interaction: A Review of the Research on Its Affective and Social Aspects.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deaudelin, Colette; Dussault, Marc; Brodeur, Monique

    2003-01-01

    Discusses a review of 34 qualitative and non-qualitative studies related to affective and social aspects of student-computer interactions. Highlights include the nature of the human-computer interaction (HCI); the interface, comparing graphic and text types; and the relation between variables linked to HCI, mainly trust, locus of control,…

  15. 76 FR 65734 - Guidance for Industry on Evaluating the Safety of Flood-Affected Food Crops for Human Consumption...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-10-24

    ... HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration Guidance for Industry on Evaluating the Safety of Flood-Affected Food Crops for Human Consumption; Availability AGENCY: Food and Drug Administration, HHS. ACTION... entitled ``Guidance for Industry: Evaluating the Safety of Flood-Affected Food Crops for Human...

  16. Cigarette smoke affects posttranslational modifications and inhibits capacitation-induced changes in human sperm proteins.

    PubMed

    Shrivastava, Vibha; Marmor, Hannah; Chernyak, Sholom; Goldstein, Marc; Feliciano, Miriam; Vigodner, Margarita

    2014-01-01

    Sperm are highly dependent on posttranslational modifications of proteins. Massive phosphorylation on tyrosine residue is required for sperm capacitation. Sumoylation has also been recently implicated in spermatogenesis and sperm functions. Cigarette smoke is known to cause oxidative stress in different tissues, and several studies suggest that it causes oxidative stress in sperm. Whether tobacco affects posttranslational modifications in human sperm is currently unknown. In this study, we show that a short exposure of human sperm to physiological concentrations of cigarette smoke extract (CSE) causes the partial de-sumoylation of many sperm proteins. Furthermore, the presence of a low concentration of CSE in the human tubal fluid during an induction of in vitro capacitation inhibits the capacitation-associated increase in protein phosphorylation. Collectively, changes in posttranslational modifications may be one of the mechanisms through which exposure to tobacco can negatively affect sperm functions and cause fertility problems. PMID:24345728

  17. Sex differences in the brain response to affective scenes with or without humans.

    PubMed

    Proverbio, Alice Mado; Adorni, Roberta; Zani, Alberto; Trestianu, Laura

    2009-10-01

    Recent findings have demonstrated that women might be more reactive than men to viewing painful stimuli (vicarious response to pain), and therefore more empathic [Han, S., Fan, Y., & Mao, L. (2008). Gender difference in empathy for pain: An electrophysiological investigation. Brain Research, 1196, 85-93]. We investigated whether the two sexes differed in their cerebral responses to affective pictures portraying humans in different positive or negative contexts compared to natural or urban scenarios. 440 IAPS slides were presented to 24 Italian students (12 women and 12 men). Half the pictures displayed humans while the remaining scenes lacked visible persons. ERPs were recorded from 128 electrodes and swLORETA (standardized weighted Low-Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography) source reconstruction was performed. Occipital P115 was greater in response to persons than to scenes and was affected by the emotional valence of the human pictures. This suggests that processing of biologically relevant stimuli is prioritized. Orbitofrontal N2 was greater in response to positive than negative human pictures in women but not in men, and not to scenes. A late positivity (LP) to suffering humans far exceeded the response to negative scenes in women but not in men. In both sexes, the contrast suffering-minus-happy humans revealed a difference in the activation of the occipito/temporal, right occipital (BA19), bilateral parahippocampal, left dorsal prefrontal cortex (DPFC) and left amygdala. However, increased right amygdala and right frontal area activities were observed only in women. The humans-minus-scenes contrast revealed a difference in the activation of the middle occipital gyrus (MOG) in men, and of the left inferior parietal (BA40), left superior temporal gyrus (STG, BA38) and right cingulate (BA31) in women (270-290 ms). These data indicate a sex-related difference in the brain response to humans, possibly supporting human empathy. PMID:19061906

  18. The epidemiology of drowning worldwide.

    PubMed

    Peden, M M; McGee, K

    2003-12-01

    The purpose of this analysis was to quantify the magnitude of death and disability from drowning and near-drowning worldwide and to provide epidemiological data on which to base prevention efforts. All data are from the Global Burden of Disease 2000 (Version 1) estimates in which deaths and disabilities are based on the WHO International Classification of Diseases. Extrapolations were made by age, sex, and WHO region. The six WHO regions of the world were further divided into high-income, and low- and middle-income based on the 1998 World Development indicators. According to the GBD 2000 data, an estimated 449,000 people drowned worldwide (7.4 per 100,000 population) and a further 1.3 million Disability Adjusted Life Years (DALYs) were lost as a result of premature death or disability from drowning. 97% of drownings occurred in low- and middle-income countries. Although 38% of drownings occurred in the Western Pacific Region, Africa had the highest drowning mortality rate (13.1 per 100,000 population). Males had higher drowning mortality rates than females for all ages and in all regions. Children under the age of 5 years had the highest drowning mortality rate for both sexes in all of the WHO regions except for Africa, where children aged 5 to 14 years had the highest mortality rate. Worldwide, for children under the age of 15 years, drowning accounted for a higher mortality rate than any other cause of injury. Drowning is a significant problem worldwide particularly for children under the age of 15 years. Low- and middle-income countries have the highest rates of drowning and account for more than 90% of such fatalities. Primary prevention efforts should thus be focused on these countries where many children who cannot swim drown in large bodies of water. PMID:14664361

  19. Worldwide satellite market demand forecast

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bowyer, J. M.; Frankfort, M.; Steinnagel, K. M.

    1981-01-01

    The forecast is for the years 1981 - 2000 with benchmark years at 1985, 1990 and 2000. Two typs of markets are considered for this study: Hardware (worldwide total) - satellites, earth stations and control facilities (includes replacements and spares); and non-hardware (addressable by U.S. industry) - planning, launch, turnkey systems and operations. These markets were examined for the INTELSAT System (international systems and domestic and regional systems using leased transponders) and domestic and regional systems. Forecasts were determined for six worldwide regions encompassing 185 countries using actual costs for existing equipment and engineering estimates of costs for advanced systems. Most likely (conservative growth rate estimates) and optimistic (mid range growth rate estimates) scenarios were employed for arriving at the forecasts which are presented in constant 1980 U.S. dollars. The worldwide satellite market demand forecast predicts that the market between 181 and 2000 will range from $35 to $50 billion. Approximately one-half of the world market, $16 to $20 billion, will be generated in the United States.

  20. Worldwide variations in colorectal cancer.

    PubMed

    Center, Melissa M; Jemal, Ahmedin; Smith, Robert A; Ward, Elizabeth

    2009-01-01

    Previous studies have documented significant international variations in colorectal cancer rates. However, these studies were limited because they were based on old data or examined only incidence or mortality data. In this article, the colorectal cancer burden and patterns worldwide are described using the most recently updated cancer incidence and mortality data available from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The authors provide 5-year (1998-2002), age-standardized colorectal cancer incidence rates for select cancer registries in IARC's Cancer Incidence in Five Continents, and trends in age-standardized death rates by single calendar year for select countries in the World Health Organization mortality database. In addition, available information regarding worldwide colorectal cancer screening initiatives are presented. The highest colorectal cancer incidence rates in 1998-2002 were observed in registries from North America, Oceania, and Europe, including Eastern European countries. These high rates are most likely the result of increases in risk factors associated with "Westernization," such as obesity and physical inactivity. In contrast, the lowest colorectal cancer incidence rates were observed from registries in Asia, Africa, and South America. Colorectal cancer mortality rates have declined in many longstanding as well as newly economically developed countries; however, they continue to increase in some low-resource countries of South America and Eastern Europe. Various screening options for colorectal cancer are available and further international consideration of targeted screening programs and/or recommendations could help alleviate the burden of colorectal cancer worldwide. PMID:19897840

  1. Proteome Analysis of Human Sebaceous Follicle Infundibula Extracted from Healthy and Acne-Affected Skin

    PubMed Central

    Bek-Thomsen, Malene; Lomholt, Hans B.; Scavenius, Carsten; Enghild, Jan J.; Brüggemann, Holger

    2014-01-01

    Acne vulgaris is a very common disease of the pilosebaceous unit of the human skin. The pathological processes of acne are not fully understood. To gain further insight sebaceous follicular casts were extracted from 18 healthy and 20 acne-affected individuals by cyanoacrylate-gel biopsies and further processed for mass spectrometry analysis, aiming at a proteomic analysis of the sebaceous follicular casts. Human as well as bacterial proteins were identified. Human proteins enriched in acne and normal samples were detected, respectively. Normal follicular casts are enriched in proteins such as prohibitins and peroxiredoxins which are involved in the protection from various stresses, including reactive oxygen species. By contrast, follicular casts extracted from acne-affected skin contained proteins involved in inflammation, wound healing and tissue remodeling. Among the most distinguishing proteins were myeloperoxidase, lactotransferrin, neutrophil elastase inhibitor and surprisingly, vimentin. The most significant biological process among all acne-enriched proteins was ‘response to a bacterium’. Identified bacterial proteins were exclusively from Propionibacterium acnes. The most abundant P. acnes proteins were surface-exposed dermatan sulphate adhesins, CAMP factors, and a so far uncharacterized lipase in follicular casts extracted from normal as well as acne-affected skin. This is a first proteomic study that identified human proteins together with proteins of the skin microbiota in sebaceous follicular casts. PMID:25238151

  2. Human infant faces provoke implicit positive affective responses in parents and non-parents alike.

    PubMed

    Senese, Vincenzo Paolo; De Falco, Simona; Bornstein, Marc H; Caria, Andrea; Buffolino, Simona; Venuti, Paola

    2013-01-01

    Human infants' complete dependence on adult caregiving suggests that mechanisms associated with adult responsiveness to infant cues might be deeply embedded in the brain. Behavioural and neuroimaging research has produced converging evidence for adults' positive disposition to infant cues, but these studies have not investigated directly the valence of adults' reactions, how they are moderated by biological and social factors, and if they relate to child caregiving. This study examines implicit affective responses of 90 adults toward faces of human and non-human (cats and dogs) infants and adults. Implicit reactions were assessed with Single Category Implicit Association Tests, and reports of childrearing behaviours were assessed by the Parental Style Questionnaire. The results showed that human infant faces represent highly biologically relevant stimuli that capture attention and are implicitly associated with positive emotions. This reaction holds independent of gender and parenthood status and is associated with ideal parenting behaviors. PMID:24282537

  3. Human Infant Faces Provoke Implicit Positive Affective Responses in Parents and Non-Parents Alike

    PubMed Central

    Senese, Vincenzo Paolo; De Falco, Simona; Bornstein, Marc H.; Caria, Andrea; Buffolino, Simona; Venuti, Paola

    2013-01-01

    Human infants' complete dependence on adult caregiving suggests that mechanisms associated with adult responsiveness to infant cues might be deeply embedded in the brain. Behavioural and neuroimaging research has produced converging evidence for adults' positive disposition to infant cues, but these studies have not investigated directly the valence of adults' reactions, how they are moderated by biological and social factors, and if they relate to child caregiving. This study examines implicit affective responses of 90 adults toward faces of human and non-human (cats and dogs) infants and adults. Implicit reactions were assessed with Single Category Implicit Association Tests, and reports of childrearing behaviours were assessed by the Parental Style Questionnaire. The results showed that human infant faces represent highly biologically relevant stimuli that capture attention and are implicitly associated with positive emotions. This reaction holds independent of gender and parenthood status and is associated with ideal parenting behaviors. PMID:24282537

  4. A humanized version of Foxp2 does not affect ultrasonic vocalization in adult mice.

    PubMed

    Hammerschmidt, K; Schreiweis, C; Minge, C; Pääbo, S; Fischer, J; Enard, W

    2015-11-01

    The transcription factor FOXP2 has been linked to severe speech and language impairments in humans. An analysis of the evolution of the FOXP2 gene has identified two amino acid substitutions that became fixed after the split of the human and chimpanzee lineages. Studying the functional consequences of these two substitutions in the endogenous Foxp2 gene of mice showed alterations in dopamine levels, striatal synaptic plasticity, neuronal morphology and cortico-striatal-dependent learning. In addition, ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) of pups had a significantly lower average pitch than control littermates. To which degree adult USVs would be affected in mice carrying the 'humanized' Foxp2 variant remained unclear. In this study, we analyzed USVs of 68 adult male mice uttered during repeated courtship encounters with different females. Mice carrying the Foxp2(hum/hum) allele did not differ significantly in the number of call elements, their element structure or in their element composition from control littermates. We conclude that neither the structure nor the usage of USVs in adult mice is affected by the two amino acid substitutions that occurred in FOXP2 during human evolution. The reported effect for pup vocalization thus appears to be transient. These results are in line with accumulating evidence that mouse USVs are hardly influenced by vocal learning. Hence, the function and evolution of genes that are necessary, but not sufficient for vocal learning in humans, must be either studied at a different phenotypic level in mice or in other organisms. PMID:26250064

  5. Effects of Virtual Human Appearance Fidelity on Emotion Contagion in Affective Inter-Personal Simulations.

    PubMed

    Volante, Matias; Babu, Sabarish V; Chaturvedi, Himanshu; Newsome, Nathan; Ebrahimi, Elham; Roy, Tania; Daily, Shaundra B; Fasolino, Tracy

    2016-04-01

    Realistic versus stylized depictions of virtual humans in simulated inter-personal situations and their ability to elicit emotional responses in users has been an open question for artists and researchers alike. We empirically evaluated the effects of near visually realistic vs. non-realistic stylized appearance of virtual humans on the emotional response of participants in a medical virtual reality system that was designed to educate users in recognizing the signs and symptoms of patient deterioration. In a between-subjects experiment protocol, participants interacted with one of three different appearances of a virtual patient, namely visually realistic, cartoon-shaded and charcoal-sketch like conditions in a mixed reality simulation. Emotional impact were measured via a combination of quantitative objective measures were gathered using skin Electrodermal Activity (EDA) sensors, and quantitative subjective measures such as the Differential Emotion Survey (DES IV), Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS), and Social Presence questionnaire. The emotional states of the participants were analyzed across four distinct time steps during which the medical condition of the virtual patient deteriorated (an emotionally stressful interaction), and were contrasted to a baseline affective state. Objective EDA results showed that in all three conditions, male participants exhibited greater levels of arousal as compared to female participants. We found that negative affect levels were significantly lower in the visually realistic condition, as compared to the stylized appearance conditions. Furthermore, in emotional dimensions of interest-excitement, surprise, anger, fear and guilt participants in all conditions responded similarly. However, in social emotional constructs of shyness, presence, perceived personality, and enjoyment-joy, we found that participants responded differently in the visually realistic condition as compared to the cartoon and sketch conditions. Our

  6. Physical characteristics of indigestible solids affect emptying from the fasting human stomach.

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, B; Beglinger, C; Neumayer, M; Stalder, G A

    1989-01-01

    Gastric emptying of indigestible solids depends on their size. It is not clear whether physical characteristics other than particle size affect emptying of indigestible solids from the fasting human stomach. We studied gastric emptying of three differently shaped particles, (cubes, spheres, rods) of either hard or soft consistency during the fasting state in human volunteers. The shape of indigestible particles did not affect their emptying. The area under the gastric emptying curve (AUC: particles x hour) was for hard cubes 24.7 (2.2), for hard spheres 27.9 (1.6), for hard rods 26.9 (2.7). All soft particles emptied faster than their identically shaped hard counterparts, but there was no difference among the three shapes (AUC for soft cubes: 29.2 (3.0), for soft spheres 32.0 (1.8), for soft rods 34.1 (1.2). If gastric emptying of hard and soft particles was compared independently of their shape, soft particles emptied significantly faster than hard ones: AUC 31.8 (1.2) v 26.5 (1.3) (p less than 0.01). In conclusion, the consistency but not the shape significantly affects gastric emptying. Specific physical characteristics other than size and shape may affect gastric emptying of indigestible particles which may be of importance in the design of drugs. PMID:2599438

  7. Low-frequency sound affects active micromechanics in the human inner ear.

    PubMed

    Kugler, Kathrin; Wiegrebe, Lutz; Grothe, Benedikt; Kössl, Manfred; Gürkov, Robert; Krause, Eike; Drexl, Markus

    2014-10-01

    Noise-induced hearing loss is one of the most common auditory pathologies, resulting from overstimulation of the human cochlea, an exquisitely sensitive micromechanical device. At very low frequencies (less than 250 Hz), however, the sensitivity of human hearing, and therefore the perceived loudness is poor. The perceived loudness is mediated by the inner hair cells of the cochlea which are driven very inadequately at low frequencies. To assess the impact of low-frequency (LF) sound, we exploited a by-product of the active amplification of sound outer hair cells (OHCs) perform, so-called spontaneous otoacoustic emissions. These are faint sounds produced by the inner ear that can be used to detect changes of cochlear physiology. We show that a short exposure to perceptually unobtrusive, LF sounds significantly affects OHCs: a 90 s, 80 dB(A) LF sound induced slow, concordant and positively correlated frequency and level oscillations of spontaneous otoacoustic emissions that lasted for about 2 min after LF sound offset. LF sounds, contrary to their unobtrusive perception, strongly stimulate the human cochlea and affect amplification processes in the most sensitive and important frequency range of human hearing. PMID:26064536

  8. Low-frequency sound affects active micromechanics in the human inner ear

    PubMed Central

    Kugler, Kathrin; Wiegrebe, Lutz; Grothe, Benedikt; Kössl, Manfred; Gürkov, Robert; Krause, Eike; Drexl, Markus

    2014-01-01

    Noise-induced hearing loss is one of the most common auditory pathologies, resulting from overstimulation of the human cochlea, an exquisitely sensitive micromechanical device. At very low frequencies (less than 250 Hz), however, the sensitivity of human hearing, and therefore the perceived loudness is poor. The perceived loudness is mediated by the inner hair cells of the cochlea which are driven very inadequately at low frequencies. To assess the impact of low-frequency (LF) sound, we exploited a by-product of the active amplification of sound outer hair cells (OHCs) perform, so-called spontaneous otoacoustic emissions. These are faint sounds produced by the inner ear that can be used to detect changes of cochlear physiology. We show that a short exposure to perceptually unobtrusive, LF sounds significantly affects OHCs: a 90 s, 80 dB(A) LF sound induced slow, concordant and positively correlated frequency and level oscillations of spontaneous otoacoustic emissions that lasted for about 2 min after LF sound offset. LF sounds, contrary to their unobtrusive perception, strongly stimulate the human cochlea and affect amplification processes in the most sensitive and important frequency range of human hearing. PMID:26064536

  9. Imagination in human social cognition, autism, and psychotic-affective conditions.

    PubMed

    Crespi, Bernard; Leach, Emma; Dinsdale, Natalie; Mokkonen, Mikael; Hurd, Peter

    2016-05-01

    Complex human social cognition has evolved in concert with risks for psychiatric disorders. Recently, autism and psychotic-affective conditions (mainly schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression) have been posited as psychological 'opposites' with regard to social-cognitive phenotypes. Imagination, considered as 'forming new ideas, mental images, or concepts', represents a central facet of human social evolution and cognition. Previous studies have documented reduced imagination in autism, and increased imagination in association with psychotic-affective conditions, yet these sets of findings have yet to be considered together, or evaluated in the context of the diametric model. We first review studies of the components, manifestations, and neural correlates of imagination in autism and psychotic-affective conditions. Next, we use data on dimensional autism in healthy populations to test the hypotheses that: (1) imagination represents the facet of autism that best accounts for its strongly male-biased sex ratio, and (2) higher genetic risk of schizophrenia is associated with higher imagination, in accordance with the predictions of the diametric model. The first hypothesis was supported by a systematic review and meta-analysis showing that Imagination exhibits the strongest male bias of all Autism Quotient (AQ) subscales, in non-clinical populations. The second hypothesis was supported, for males, by associations between schizophrenia genetic risk scores, derived from a set of single-nucleotide polymorphisms, and the AQ Imagination subscale. Considered together, these findings indicate that imagination, especially social imagination as embodied in the default mode human brain network, mediates risk and diametric dimensional phenotypes of autism and psychotic-affective conditions. PMID:26896903

  10. Detection of Borrelia burgdorferi Sensu Stricto ospC Alleles Associated with Human Lyme Borreliosis Worldwide in Non-Human-Biting Tick Ixodes affinis and Rodent Hosts in Southeastern United States

    PubMed Central

    Golovchenko, Maryna; Hönig, Václav; Mallátová, Nadja; Krbková, Lenka; Mikulášek, Peter; Fedorova, Natalia; Belfiore, Natalia M.; Grubhoffer, Libor; Lane, Robert S.; Oliver, James H.

    2013-01-01

    Comparative analysis of ospC genes from 127 Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto strains collected in European and North American regions where Lyme disease is endemic and where it is not endemic revealed a close relatedness of geographically distinct populations. ospC alleles A, B, and L were detected on both continents in vectors and hosts, including humans. Six ospC alleles, A, B, L, Q, R, and V, were prevalent in Europe; 4 of them were detected in samples of human origin. Ten ospC alleles, A, B, D, E3, F, G, H, H3, I3, and M, were identified in the far-western United States. Four ospC alleles, B, G, H, and L, were abundant in the southeastern United States. Here we present the first expanded analysis of ospC alleles of B. burgdorferi strains from the southeastern United States with respect to their relatedness to strains from other North American and European localities. We demonstrate that ospC genotypes commonly associated with human Lyme disease in European and North American regions where the disease is endemic were detected in B. burgdorferi strains isolated from the non-human-biting tick Ixodes affinis and rodent hosts in the southeastern United States. We discovered that some ospC alleles previously known only from Europe are widely distributed in the southeastern United States, a finding that confirms the hypothesis of transoceanic migration of Borrelia species. PMID:23263953

  11. Space Research Fortifies Nutrition Worldwide

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    NASA's Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems program attempted to address basic needs of crews, meet stringent payload and power usage restrictions, and minimize space occupancy, by developing living, regenerative ecosystems that would take care of themselves and their inhabitants. An experiment from this program evolved into one of the most widespread NASA spinoffs of all time-a method for manufacturing an algae-based food supplement that provides the nutrients previously only available in breast milk. Martek Biosciences Corporation, in Columbia, Maryland, now manufactures this supplement, and it can be found in over 90 percent of the infant formulas sold in the United States, as well as those sold in over 65 other countries. With such widespread use, the company estimates that over 24 million babies worldwide have consumed its nutritional additives.

  12. Worldwide Alzheimer's disease neuroimaging initiative.

    PubMed

    Carrillo, Maria C; Bain, Lisa J; Frisoni, Giovanni B; Weiner, Michael W

    2012-07-01

    The Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) was launched in 2003 to speed drug development by validating imaging and blood/cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers for Alzheimer's disease clinical treatment trials. ADNI is a naturalistic (nontreatment) multisite longitudinal study. A true public-private partnership, the first phase of ADNI (ADNI 1) set a new standard for data sharing without embargo. In addition, it has been extended to 2017 by additional funding (North American-ADNI Grand Opportunities and ADNI 2) as well as multiple projects around the world, collectively known as Worldwide ADNI (WW-ADNI). The goal of WW-ADNI is to harmonize projects and results across different geographical sites and to encourage and harmonize data management and availability to investigators around the world. WW-ADNI projects are currently underway in North America, Europe, Japan, Australia, Korea, Taiwan, and Argentina, with a nascent program in China and a possible future program in Brazil. PMID:22748939

  13. The Voice of Emotion across Species: How Do Human Listeners Recognize Animals' Affective States?

    PubMed Central

    Scheumann, Marina; Hasting, Anna S.; Kotz, Sonja A.; Zimmermann, Elke

    2014-01-01

    Voice-induced cross-taxa emotional recognition is the ability to understand the emotional state of another species based on its voice. In the past, induced affective states, experience-dependent higher cognitive processes or cross-taxa universal acoustic coding and processing mechanisms have been discussed to underlie this ability in humans. The present study sets out to distinguish the influence of familiarity and phylogeny on voice-induced cross-taxa emotional perception in humans. For the first time, two perspectives are taken into account: the self- (i.e. emotional valence induced in the listener) versus the others-perspective (i.e. correct recognition of the emotional valence of the recording context). Twenty-eight male participants listened to 192 vocalizations of four different species (human infant, dog, chimpanzee and tree shrew). Stimuli were recorded either in an agonistic (negative emotional valence) or affiliative (positive emotional valence) context. Participants rated the emotional valence of the stimuli adopting self- and others-perspective by using a 5-point version of the Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM). Familiarity was assessed based on subjective rating, objective labelling of the respective stimuli and interaction time with the respective species. Participants reliably recognized the emotional valence of human voices, whereas the results for animal voices were mixed. The correct classification of animal voices depended on the listener's familiarity with the species and the call type/recording context, whereas there was less influence of induced emotional states and phylogeny. Our results provide first evidence that explicit voice-induced cross-taxa emotional recognition in humans is shaped more by experience-dependent cognitive mechanisms than by induced affective states or cross-taxa universal acoustic coding and processing mechanisms. PMID:24621604

  14. Triclosan and bisphenol a affect decidualization of human endometrial stromal cells.

    PubMed

    Forte, Maurizio; Mita, Luigi; Cobellis, Luigi; Merafina, Verdiana; Specchio, Raffaella; Rossi, Sergio; Mita, Damiano Gustavo; Mosca, Lavinia; Castaldi, Maria Antonietta; De Falco, Maria; Laforgia, Vincenza; Crispi, Stefania

    2016-02-15

    In recent years, impaired fertility and endometrium related diseases are increased. Many evidences suggest that environmental pollution might be considered a risk factor for endometrial physiopathology. Among environmental pollutants, endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) act on endocrine system, causing hormonal imbalance which, in turn, leads to female and male reproductive dysfunctions. In this work, we studied the effects of triclosan (TCL) and bisphenol A (BPA), two widespread EDCs, on human endometrial stromal cells (ESCs), derived from endometrial biopsies from woman not affected by endometriosis. Cell proliferation, cell cycle, migration and decidualization mechanisms were investigated. Treatments have been performed with both the EDCs separately or in presence and in absence of progesterone used as decidualization stimulus. Both TCL and BPA did not affect cell proliferation, but they arrested ESCs at G2/M phase of cell cycle enhancing cell migration. TCL and BPA also increased gene expression and protein levels of some decidualization markers, such as insulin growth factor binding protein 1 (IGFBP1) and prolactin (PRL), amplifying the effect of progesterone alone. All together, our data strongly suggest that TCL and BPA might alter human endometrium physiology so affecting fertility and pregnancy outcome. PMID:26604029

  15. Do different degrees of human activity affect the diet of Brazilian silverside Atherinella brasiliensis?

    PubMed

    Alves, V E N; Patrício, J; Dolbeth, M; Pessanha, A; Palma, A R T; Dantas, E W; Vendel, A L

    2016-08-01

    The aim of the present study was to test whether different degrees of human activity affect the diet of the Brazilian silverside Atherinella brasiliensis in two tropical estuaries. Fish were collected along the salinity gradient of two Brazilian estuaries, the heavily impacted Paraiba Estuary and the less impacted Mamanguape Estuary, in the dry and wet seasons. The findings confirm that A. brasiliensis has generalist feeding habits and is able to change its diet under different environmental conditions. The results indicate clear spatial (i.e. along the estuarine gradient) changes in diet composition in both estuaries, but diet was also influenced by the degree of anthropogenic disturbance. During the wet season in the nutrient enriched Paraiba Estuary, when human activity was higher, the diet of A. brasiliensis was poorer and dominated by few dietary items, reflecting the potential impoverishment of prey items in this heavily disturbed system. The specimens collected in the most affected estuary also had a greater frequency of micro-plastics and parasites in their stomachs, reflecting the greater degree of human disturbance in the estuary. The present findings suggest that the diet of A. brasiliensis could be a useful indicator of changes in the ecological quality of these and other tropical estuaries of the western Atlantic Ocean. PMID:27328827

  16. Inference of human affective states from psychophysiological measurements extracted under ecologically valid conditions

    PubMed Central

    Betella, Alberto; Zucca, Riccardo; Cetnarski, Ryszard; Greco, Alberto; Lanatà, Antonio; Mazzei, Daniele; Tognetti, Alessandro; Arsiwalla, Xerxes D.; Omedas, Pedro; De Rossi, Danilo; Verschure, Paul F. M. J.

    2014-01-01

    Compared to standard laboratory protocols, the measurement of psychophysiological signals in real world experiments poses technical and methodological challenges due to external factors that cannot be directly controlled. To address this problem, we propose a hybrid approach based on an immersive and human accessible space called the eXperience Induction Machine (XIM), that incorporates the advantages of a laboratory within a life-like setting. The XIM integrates unobtrusive wearable sensors for the acquisition of psychophysiological signals suitable for ambulatory emotion research. In this paper, we present results from two different studies conducted to validate the XIM as a general-purpose sensing infrastructure for the study of human affective states under ecologically valid conditions. In the first investigation, we recorded and classified signals from subjects exposed to pictorial stimuli corresponding to a range of arousal levels, while they were free to walk and gesticulate. In the second study, we designed an experiment that follows the classical conditioning paradigm, a well-known procedure in the behavioral sciences, with the additional feature that participants were free to move in the physical space, as opposed to similar studies measuring physiological signals in constrained laboratory settings. Our results indicate that, by using our sensing infrastructure, it is indeed possible to infer human event-elicited affective states through measurements of psychophysiological signals under ecological conditions. PMID:25309310

  17. Nonsense mutations in the human. beta. -globin gene affect mRNA metabolism

    SciTech Connect

    Baserga, S.J.; Benz, E.J. Jr. )

    1988-04-01

    A number of premature translation termination mutations (nonsense mutations) have been described in the human {alpha}- and {beta}-globin genes. Studies on mRNA isolated from patients with {beta}{sup 0}-thalassemia have shown that for both the {beta}-17 and the {beta}-39 mutations less than normal levels of {beta}-globin mRNA accumulate in peripheral blood cells. (The codon at which the mutation occurs designates the name of the mutation; there are 146 codons in human {beta}-globin mRNA). In vitro studies using the cloned {beta}-39 gene have reproduced this effect in a heterologous transfection system and have suggested that the defect resides in intranuclear metabolism. The authors have asked if this phenomenon of decreased mRNA accumulation is a general property of nonsense mutations and if the effect depends on the location or the type of mutation. Toward this end, they have studied the effect of five nonsense mutations and two missense mutations on the expression of human {beta}-globin mRNA in a heterologous transfection system. In all cases studied, the presence of a translation termination codon correlates with a decrease in the steady-state level of mRNA. The data suggest that the metabolism of a mammalian mRNA is affected by the presence of a mutation that affects translation.

  18. Worldwide Research, Worldwide Participation: Web-Based Test Logger

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clark, David A.

    1998-01-01

    Thanks to the World Wide Web, a new paradigm has been born. ESCORT (steady state data system) facilities can now be configured to use a Web-based test logger, enabling worldwide participation in tests. NASA Lewis Research Center's new Web-based test logger for ESCORT automatically writes selected test and facility parameters to a browser and allows researchers to insert comments. All data can be viewed in real time via Internet connections, so anyone with a Web browser and the correct URL (universal resource locator, or Web address) can interactively participate. As the test proceeds and ESCORT data are taken, Web browsers connected to the logger are updated automatically. The use of this logger has demonstrated several benefits. First, researchers are free from manual data entry and are able to focus more on the tests. Second, research logs can be printed in report format immediately after (or during) a test. And finally, all test information is readily available to an international public.

  19. Affective Bicultural and Global-Human Identity Scales for Mexican-American adolescents.

    PubMed

    Der-Karabetian, A; Ruiz, Y

    1997-06-01

    Scales were developed to measure affective aspects of Latino, American, and global-human identities among first- and second-generation Mexican-American adolescents. Participants were 84 boys and 93 girls from the Los Angeles high schools. 60 were born in Mexico, and 117 were born in the United States and had at least one parent born in Mexico. The affective Latino and American measures were independent and predictably related to a behaviorally oriented measure of acculturation. They were also used to identify Berry's four modes of acculturation: Separated, Assimilated, Marginalized, and Bicultural. The four acculturation groups rated similarly on self-esteem and academic aspiration. The first and second generations each scored higher on Latino identity than on American identity. PMID:9198403

  20. Health in the hot zone - How could global warming affect humans?

    SciTech Connect

    Monastersky, R.

    1996-04-06

    A soon-to-be-released report from the World Health Organization examines the health effects of global warming, calling climate change one of the largest public health challenges for the upcoming century. The issue extends beyond tropical illness: deaths caused directly by heat, dwindling agricultural yields etc. could all affect human health. This article looks at the following health related effects and gives an overview of the scientific information available on each: temperature and mortality; tropical trouble, including vecorborne diseases and increase in susceptable populations; and waterborne problems such as cholera, harmful algal bloomes, food shortages.

  1. Does correlated color temperature affect the ability of humans to identify veins?

    PubMed

    Argyraki, Aikaterini; Clemmensen, Line Katrine Harder; Petersen, Paul Michael

    2016-01-01

    In the present study we provide empirical evidence and demonstrate statistically that white illumination settings can affect the human ability to identify veins in the inner hand vasculature. A special light-emitting diode lamp with high color rendering index (CRI 84-95) was developed and the effect of correlated color temperature was evaluated, in the range between 2600 and 5700 K at an illuminance of 40±9  lx on the ability of adult humans to identify veins. It is shown that the ability to identify veins can, on average, be increased up to 24% when white illumination settings that do not resemble incandescent light are applied. The illuminance reported together with the effect of white illumination settings on direct visual perception of biosamples are relevant for clinical investigations during the night. PMID:26831595

  2. Dominant factors affecting temperature rise in simulations of human thermoregulation during RF exposure.

    PubMed

    Laakso, Ilkka; Hirata, Akimasa

    2011-12-01

    Numerical models of the human thermoregulatory system can be used together with realistic voxel models of the human anatomy to simulate the body temperature increases caused by the power absorption from radio-frequency electromagnetic fields. In this paper, the Pennes bioheat equation with a thermoregulatory model is used for calculating local peak temperatures as well as the body-core-temperature elevation in a realistic human body model for grounded plane-wave exposures at frequencies 39, 800 and 2400 MHz. The electromagnetic power loss is solved by the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method, and the discretized bioheat equation is solved by the geometric multigrid method. Human thermoregulatory models contain numerous thermophysiological and computational parameters--some of which may be subject to considerable uncertainty--that affect the simulated core and local temperature elevations. The goal of this paper is to find how greatly the computed temperature is influenced by changes in various modelling parameters, such as the skin blood flow rate, models for vasodilation and sweating, and clothing and air movement. The results show that the peak temperature rises are most strongly affected by the modelling of tissue blood flow and its temperature dependence, and mostly unaffected by the central control mechanism for vasodilation and sweating. Almost the opposite is true for the body-core-temperature rise, which is however typically greatly lower than the peak temperature rise. It also seems that ignoring the thermoregulation and the blood temperature increase is a good approximation when the local 10 g averaged specific absorption rate is smaller than 10 W kg(-1). PMID:22080753

  3. Dominant factors affecting temperature rise in simulations of human thermoregulation during RF exposure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laakso, Ilkka; Hirata, Akimasa

    2011-12-01

    Numerical models of the human thermoregulatory system can be used together with realistic voxel models of the human anatomy to simulate the body temperature increases caused by the power absorption from radio-frequency electromagnetic fields. In this paper, the Pennes bioheat equation with a thermoregulatory model is used for calculating local peak temperatures as well as the body-core-temperature elevation in a realistic human body model for grounded plane-wave exposures at frequencies 39, 800 and 2400 MHz. The electromagnetic power loss is solved by the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method, and the discretized bioheat equation is solved by the geometric multigrid method. Human thermoregulatory models contain numerous thermophysiological and computational parameters—some of which may be subject to considerable uncertainty—that affect the simulated core and local temperature elevations. The goal of this paper is to find how greatly the computed temperature is influenced by changes in various modelling parameters, such as the skin blood flow rate, models for vasodilation and sweating, and clothing and air movement. The results show that the peak temperature rises are most strongly affected by the modelling of tissue blood flow and its temperature dependence, and mostly unaffected by the central control mechanism for vasodilation and sweating. Almost the opposite is true for the body-core-temperature rise, which is however typically greatly lower than the peak temperature rise. It also seems that ignoring the thermoregulation and the blood temperature increase is a good approximation when the local 10 g averaged specific absorption rate is smaller than 10 W kg-1.

  4. Worldwide Spacecraft Crew Hatch History

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Gary

    2009-01-01

    The JSC Flight Safety Office has developed this compilation of historical information on spacecraft crew hatches to assist the Safety Tech Authority in the evaluation and analysis of worldwide spacecraft crew hatch design and performance. The document is prepared by SAIC s Gary Johnson, former NASA JSC S&MA Associate Director for Technical. Mr. Johnson s previous experience brings expert knowledge to assess the relevancy of data presented. He has experience with six (6) of the NASA spacecraft programs that are covered in this document: Apollo; Skylab; Apollo Soyuz Test Project (ASTP), Space Shuttle, ISS and the Shuttle/Mir Program. Mr. Johnson is also intimately familiar with the JSC Design and Procedures Standard, JPR 8080.5, having been one of its original developers. The observations and findings are presented first by country and organized within each country section by program in chronological order of emergence. A host of reference sources used to augment the personal observations and comments of the author are named within the text and/or listed in the reference section of this document. Careful attention to the selection and inclusion of photos, drawings and diagrams is used to give visual association and clarity to the topic areas examined.

  5. The worldwide ionospheric data base

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bilitza, Dieter

    1989-01-01

    The worldwide ionospheric data base is scattered over the entire globe. Different data sets are held at different institutions in the U.S., U.S.S.R., Australia, Europe, and Asia. The World Data Centers on the different continents archive and distribute part of the huge data base; the scope and cross section of the individual data holdings depend on the regional and special interest of the center. An attempt is made to pull together all the strings that point toward different ionospheric data holdings. Requesters are provided with the information about what is available and where to get it. An attempt is also made to evaluate the reliability and compatibility of the different data sets based on the consensus in the ionospheric research community. The status and accuracy of the standard ionospheric models are also discussed because they may facilitate first order assessment of ionospheric effects. This is a first step toward an ionospheric data directory within the framework of NSSDC's master directory.

  6. New worldwide hydrological initiative needed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shuttleworth, W. James

    This essay argues for a new, decade-long worldwide hydrological initiative to permit change in the paradigm that underlies hydrological design and management. It is stimulated by the fact that over the last 20 years there has been a distinct change in our understanding of the nature and origin of the statistics of hydrological variables as measured in an individual watershed or region. The assumption was that these statistics are entirely haphazard in nature and indeterminate in origin, and do not change with time.Thus the most important hydrological variables (such as precipitation, runoff, and potential evaporation) are sampled over a calibration period (of perhaps only a few decades), and the statistics observed within that calibration period are used as the basis for hydrological design and water resource management. Now, however, there is increasing realization that the nature of the locally observed statistics of hydrological variables may be significantly determined by global-scale phenomena and might be prone to long-term change.

  7. Cell therapy worldwide: an incipient revolution.

    PubMed

    Rao, Mahendra; Mason, Chris; Solomon, Susan

    2015-01-01

    The regenerative medicine field is large, diverse and active worldwide. A variety of different organizational and product models have been successful, and pioneering entrepreneurs have shown both what can work and, critically, what does not. Evolving regulations, novel funding mechanisms combined with new technological breakthroughs are keeping the field in a state of flux. The field struggles to cope with the lack of infrastructure and investment, it nevertheless has evolved from its roots in human stem cell therapy and tissue and organ transplants to a field composed of a variety of products from multiple cell sources with approval for use in numerous countries. Currently, tens of thousands of patients have been treated with some kind of cell therapy. PMID:25835482

  8. Differential Muscle Involvement in Mice and Humans Affected by McArdle Disease.

    PubMed

    Krag, Thomas O; Pinós, Tomàs; Nielsen, Tue L; Brull, Astrid; Andreu, Antoni L; Vissing, John

    2016-05-01

    McArdle disease (muscle glycogenosis type V) is caused by myophosphorylase deficiency, which leads to impaired glycogen breakdown. We investigated how myophosphorylase deficiency affects muscle physiology, morphology, and glucose metabolism in 20-week-old McArdle mice and compared the findings to those in McArdle disease patients. Muscle contractions in the McArdle mice were affected by structural degeneration due to glycogen accumulation, and glycolytic muscles fatigued prematurely, as occurs in the muscles of McArdle disease patients. Homozygous McArdle mice showed muscle fiber disarray, variations in fiber size, vacuoles, and some internal nuclei associated with cytosolic glycogen accumulation and ongoing regeneration; structural damage was seen only in a minority of human patients. Neither liver nor brain isoforms of glycogen phosphorylase were upregulated in muscles, thus providing no substitution for the missing muscle isoform. In the mice, the tibialis anterior (TA) muscles were invariably more damaged than the quadriceps muscles. This may relate to a 7-fold higher level of myophosphorylase in TA compared to quadriceps in wild-type mice and suggests higher glucose turnover in the TA. Thus, despite differences, the mouse model of McArdle disease shares fundamental physiological and clinical features with the human disease and could be used for studies of pathogenesis and development of therapies. PMID:27030740

  9. Factors affecting platinum concentrations in human surgical tumour specimens after cisplatin.

    PubMed Central

    Stewart, D. J.; Molepo, J. M.; Green, R. M.; Montpetit, V. A.; Hugenholtz, H.; Lamothe, A.; Mikhael, N. Z.; Redmond, M. D.; Gadia, M.; Goel, R.

    1995-01-01

    We assessed factors which affect cisplatin concentrations in human surgical tumour specimens. Cisplatin 10 mg m-2 was given i.v. to 45 consenting patients undergoing surgical resection of neoplasms, and platinum was assayed in resected tumour and in deproteinated plasma by flameless atomic absorption spectrophotometry. By multiple stepwise regression analysis of normalised data, patient characteristics that emerged as being most closely associated (P < 0.05) with tumour platinum concentrations (after correcting for associations with other variables) were tumour 'source' [primary brain lymphomas, medulloblastomas and meningiomas ('type LMM') > 'others' > lung cancer > head/neck cancer > gliomas) or tumour 'type' (LMM > brain metastases > extracerebral tumours > gliomas), serum calcium and chloride (positive correlations) and bilirubin (negative). Tumour location (intracranial vs extracranial) did not correlate with platinum concentrations. If values for a single outlier were omitted, high-grade gliomas had significantly higher platinum concentrations (P < 0.003) than low-grade gliomas. For intracranial tumours, the computerised tomographic scan feature that correlated most closely with platinum concentrations in multivariate analysis was the darkness of peritumoral oedema. Tumour source or type is a much more important correlate of human tumour cisplatin concentrations than is intracranial vs extracranial location. Serum calcium, chloride and bilirubin levels may affect tumour cisplatin uptake or retention. CT scan characteristics may help predict cisplatin concentrations in intracranial tumours. PMID:7880744

  10. Transcriptomics and proteomics show that selenium affects inflammation, cytoskeleton, and cancer pathways in human rectal biopsies.

    PubMed

    Méplan, Catherine; Johnson, Ian T; Polley, Abigael C J; Cockell, Simon; Bradburn, David M; Commane, Daniel M; Arasaradnam, Ramesh P; Mulholland, Francis; Zupanic, Anze; Mathers, John C; Hesketh, John

    2016-08-01

    Epidemiologic studies highlight the potential role of dietary selenium (Se) in colorectal cancer prevention. Our goal was to elucidate whether expression of factors crucial for colorectal homoeostasis is affected by physiologic differences in Se status. Using transcriptomics and proteomics followed by pathway analysis, we identified pathways affected by Se status in rectal biopsies from 22 healthy adults, including 11 controls with optimal status (mean plasma Se = 1.43 μM) and 11 subjects with suboptimal status (mean plasma Se = 0.86 μM). We observed that 254 genes and 26 proteins implicated in cancer (80%), immune function and inflammatory response (40%), cell growth and proliferation (70%), cellular movement, and cell death (50%) were differentially expressed between the 2 groups. Expression of 69 genes, including selenoproteins W1 and K, which are genes involved in cytoskeleton remodelling and transcription factor NFκB signaling, correlated significantly with Se status. Integrating proteomics and transcriptomics datasets revealed reduced inflammatory and immune responses and cytoskeleton remodelling in the suboptimal Se status group. This is the first study combining omics technologies to describe the impact of differences in Se status on colorectal expression patterns, revealing that suboptimal Se status could alter inflammatory signaling and cytoskeleton in human rectal mucosa and so influence cancer risk.-Méplan, C., Johnson, I. T., Polley, A. C. J., Cockell, S., Bradburn, D. M., Commane, D. M., Arasaradnam, R. P., Mulholland, F., Zupanic, A., Mathers, J. C., Hesketh, J. Transcriptomics and proteomics show that selenium affects inflammation, cytoskeleton, and cancer pathways in human rectal biopsies. PMID:27103578

  11. Common genetic polymorphisms affect the human requirement for the nutrient choline

    PubMed Central

    da Costa, Kerry-Ann; Kozyreva, Olga G.; Song, Jiannan; Galanko, Joseph A.; Fischer, Leslie M.; Zeisel, Steven H.

    2006-01-01

    Humans eating diets deficient in the essential nutrient choline can develop organ dysfunction. We hypothesized that common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes involved in choline metabolism influence the dietary requirement of this nutrient. Fifty-seven humans were fed a low choline diet until they developed organ dysfunction or for up to 42 days. We tested DNA SNPs for allelic association with susceptibility to developing organ dysfunction associated with choline deficiency. We identified an SNP in the promoter region of the phosphatidylethanolamine N-methyltransferase gene (PEMT; −744 G→C; rs12325817) for which 18 of 23 carriers of the C allele (78%) developed organ dysfunction when fed a low choline diet (odds ratio 25, P=0.002). The first of two SNPs in the coding region of the choline dehydrogenase gene (CHDH; +318 A→C; rs9001) had a protective effect on susceptibility to choline deficiency, while a second CHDH variant (+432 G→T; rs12676) was associated with increased susceptibility to choline deficiency. A SNP in the PEMT coding region (+5465 G→A; rs7946) and a betaine:homocysteine methyl-transferase (BHMT) SNP (+742 G→A; rs3733890) were not associated with susceptibility to choline deficiency. Identification of common polymorphisms that affect dietary requirements for choline could enable us to identify individuals for whom we need to assure adequate dietary choline intake.—da Costa, K.-A., Kozyreva, O. G., Song, J., Galanko, J. A., Fischer, L. M., Zeisel, S. H. Common genetic polymorphisms affect the human requirement for the nutrient choline. PMID:16816108

  12. Structure-mechanical function relations at nano-scale in heat-affected human dental tissue.

    PubMed

    Sui, Tan; Sandholzer, Michael A; Le Bourhis, Eric; Baimpas, Nikolaos; Landini, Gabriel; Korsunsky, Alexander M

    2014-04-01

    The knowledge of the mechanical properties of dental materials related to their hierarchical structure is essential for understanding and predicting the effect of microstructural alterations on the performance of dental tissues in the context of forensic and archaeological investigation as well as laser irradiation treatment of caries. So far, few studies have focused on the nano-scale structure-mechanical function relations of human teeth altered by chemical or thermal treatment. The response of dental tissues to thermal treatment is thought to be strongly affected by the mineral crystallite size, their spatial arrangement and preferred orientation. In this study, synchrotron-based small and wide angle X-ray scattering (SAXS/WAXS) techniques were used to investigate the micro-structural alterations (mean crystalline thickness, crystal perfection and degree of alignment) of heat-affected dentine and enamel in human dental teeth. Additionally, nanoindentation mapping was applied to detect the spatial and temperature-dependent nano-mechanical properties variation. The SAXS/WAXS results revealed that the mean crystalline thickness distribution in dentine was more uniform compared with that in enamel. Although in general the mean crystalline thickness increased both in dentine and enamel as the temperature increased, the local structural variations gradually reduced. Meanwhile, the hardness and reduced modulus in enamel decreased as the temperature increased, while for dentine, the tendency reversed at high temperature. The analysis of the correlation between the ultrastructure and mechanical properties coupled with the effect of temperature demonstrates the effect of mean thickness and orientation on the local variation of mechanical property. This structural-mechanical property alteration is likely to be due to changes of HAp crystallites, thus dentine and enamel exhibit different responses at different temperatures. Our results enable an improved understanding of

  13. A Whole-Genome RNA Interference Screen for Human Cell Factors Affecting Myxoma Virus Replication

    PubMed Central

    Teferi, Wondimagegnehu M.; Dodd, Kristopher; Maranchuk, Rob; Favis, Nicole

    2013-01-01

    Myxoma virus (MYXV) provides an important model for investigating host-pathogen interactions. Recent studies have also highlighted how mutations in transformed human cells can expand the host range of this rabbit virus. Although virus growth depends upon interactions between virus and host proteins, the nature of these interactions is poorly understood. To address this matter, we performed small interfering RNA (siRNA) screens for genes affecting MYXV growth in human MDA-MB-231 cells. By using siRNAs targeting the whole human genome (21,585 genes), a subset of human phosphatases and kinases (986 genes), and also a custom siRNA library targeting selected statistically significant genes (“hits”) and nonsignificant genes (“nonhits”) of the whole human genome screens (88 genes), we identified 711 siRNA pools that promoted MYXV growth and 333 that were inhibitory. Another 32 siRNA pools (mostly targeting the proteasome) were toxic. The overall overlap in the results was about 25% for the hits and 75% for the nonhits. These pro- and antiviral genes can be clustered into pathways and related groups, including well-established inflammatory and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways, as well as clusters relating to β-catenin and the Wnt signaling cascade, the cell cycle, and cellular metabolism. The validity of a subset of these hits was independently confirmed. For example, treating cells with siRNAs that might stabilize cells in G1, or inhibit passage into S phase, stimulated MYXV growth, and these effects were reproduced by trapping cells at the G1/S boundary with an inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinases 4/6. By using 2-deoxy-d-glucose and plasmids carrying the gene for phosphofructokinase, we also confirmed that infection is favored by aerobic glycolytic metabolism. These studies provide insights into how the growth state and structure of cells affect MYXV growth and how these factors might be manipulated to advantage in oncolytic virus therapy. PMID

  14. Foetal bovine serum-derived exosomes affect yield and phenotype of human cardiac progenitor cell culture

    PubMed Central

    Angelini, Francesco; Ionta, Vittoria; Rossi, Fabrizio; Miraldi, Fabio; Messina, Elisa; Giacomello, Alessandro

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) represent a powerful tool in cardiac regenerative medicine. Pre-clinical studies suggest that most of the beneficial effects promoted by the injected cells are due to their paracrine activity exerted on endogenous cells and tissue. Exosomes are candidate mediators of this paracrine effects. According to their potential, many researchers have focused on characterizing exosomes derived from specific cell types, but, up until now, only few studies have analyzed the possible in vitro effects of bovine serum-derived exosomes on cell proliferation or differentiation. Methods: The aim of this study was to analyse, from a qualitative and quantitative point of view, the in vitro effects of bovine serum exosomes on human CPCs cultured either as cardiospheres or as monolayers of cardiosphere-forming cells. Results: Effects on proliferation, yield and molecular patterning were detected. We show, for the first time, that exogenous bovine exosomes support the proliferation and migration of human cardiosphere-forming cells, and that their depletion affects cardiospheres formation, in terms of size, yield and extra-cellular matrix production. Conclusion: These results stress the importance of considering differential biological effects of exogenous cell culture supplements on the final phenotype of primary human cell cultures.

  15. Human cytomegalovirus RL13 protein interacts with host NUDT14 protein affecting viral DNA replication.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guili; Ren, Gaowei; Cui, Xin; Lu, Zhitao; Ma, Yanping; Qi, Ying; Huang, Yujing; Liu, Zhongyang; Sun, Zhengrong; Ruan, Qiang

    2016-03-01

    The interaction between the host and human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is important in determining the outcome of a viral infection. The HCMV RL13 gene product exerts independent, inhibitory effects on viral growth in fibroblasts and epithelial cells. At present, there are few reports on the interactions between the HCMV RL13 protein and human host proteins. The present study provided direct evidence for the specific interaction between HCMV RL13 and host nucleoside diphosphate linked moiety X (nudix)‑type motif 14 (NUDT14), a UDP‑glucose pyrophosphatase, using two‑hybrid screening, an in vitro glutathione S‑transferase pull‑down assay, and co‑immunoprecipitation in human embryonic kidney HEK293 cells. Additionally, the RL13 protein was shown to co‑localize with the NUDT14 protein in the HEK293 cell membrane and cytoplasm, demonstrated using fluorescence confocal microscopy. Decreasing the expression level of NUDT14 via NUDT14‑specific small interfering RNAs increased the number of viral DNA copies in the HCMV‑infected cells. However, the overexpression of NUDT14 in a stably expressing cell line did not affect viral DNA levels significantly in the HCMV infected cells. Based on the known functions of NUDT14, the results of the present study suggested that the interaction between the RL13 protein and NUDT14 protein may be involved in HCMV DNA replication, and that NUDT14 may offer potential in the modulation of viral infection. PMID:26781650

  16. The cross-mammalian neurophenomenology of primal emotional affects: From animal feelings to human therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Panksepp, Jaak

    2016-06-01

    The neural correlates of human emotions are easy to harvest. In contrast, the neural constitution of emotional feelings in humans has resisted systematic scientific analysis. This review summarizes how preclinical affective neuroscience initiatives are making progress in decoding the neural nature of such feelings in animal brains. This has been achieved by studying the rewarding and punishing effects of deep brain stimulation (DBS) of subcortical emotional networks (labeled SEEING, RAGE, FEAR, LUST, CARE, PANIC, and PLAY systems) that evoke distinct emotion action patterns, as well as rewarding and punishing effects in animals. The implications of this knowledge for development of new psychiatric interventions, especially depression, are discussed. Three new antidepressive therapeutics arising from this work are briefly noted: 1) DBS of the medial forebrain bundle (MFB) in humans, 2) reduction of psychological pain that may arise from excessive PANIC arousal, and 3) facilitation of social joy through the study of social play in rats The overall argument is that we may more readily develop new psychiatric interventions through preclinical models if we take animal emotional feelings seriously, as opposed to just behavioral changes, as targets for development of new treatments. PMID:26876723

  17. The Affective Slider: A Digital Self-Assessment Scale for the Measurement of Human Emotions

    PubMed Central

    Betella, Alberto; Verschure, Paul F. M. J.

    2016-01-01

    Self-assessment methods are broadly employed in emotion research for the collection of subjective affective ratings. The Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM), a pictorial scale developed in the eighties for the measurement of pleasure, arousal, and dominance, is still among the most popular self-reporting tools, despite having been conceived upon design principles which are today obsolete. By leveraging on state-of-the-art user interfaces and metacommunicative pictorial representations, we developed the Affective Slider (AS), a digital self-reporting tool composed of two slider controls for the quick assessment of pleasure and arousal. To empirically validate the AS, we conducted a systematic comparison between AS and SAM in a task involving the emotional assessment of a series of images taken from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS), a database composed of pictures representing a wide range of semantic categories often used as a benchmark in psychological studies. Our results show that the AS is equivalent to SAM in the self-assessment of pleasure and arousal, with two added advantages: the AS does not require written instructions and it can be easily reproduced in latest-generation digital devices, including smartphones and tablets. Moreover, we compared new and normative IAPS ratings and found a general drop in reported arousal of pictorial stimuli. Not only do our results demonstrate that legacy scales for the self-report of affect can be replaced with new measurement tools developed in accordance to modern design principles, but also that standardized sets of stimuli which are widely adopted in research on human emotion are not as effective as they were in the past due to a general desensitization towards highly arousing content. PMID:26849361

  18. The Affective Slider: A Digital Self-Assessment Scale for the Measurement of Human Emotions.

    PubMed

    Betella, Alberto; Verschure, Paul F M J

    2016-01-01

    Self-assessment methods are broadly employed in emotion research for the collection of subjective affective ratings. The Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM), a pictorial scale developed in the eighties for the measurement of pleasure, arousal, and dominance, is still among the most popular self-reporting tools, despite having been conceived upon design principles which are today obsolete. By leveraging on state-of-the-art user interfaces and metacommunicative pictorial representations, we developed the Affective Slider (AS), a digital self-reporting tool composed of two slider controls for the quick assessment of pleasure and arousal. To empirically validate the AS, we conducted a systematic comparison between AS and SAM in a task involving the emotional assessment of a series of images taken from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS), a database composed of pictures representing a wide range of semantic categories often used as a benchmark in psychological studies. Our results show that the AS is equivalent to SAM in the self-assessment of pleasure and arousal, with two added advantages: the AS does not require written instructions and it can be easily reproduced in latest-generation digital devices, including smartphones and tablets. Moreover, we compared new and normative IAPS ratings and found a general drop in reported arousal of pictorial stimuli. Not only do our results demonstrate that legacy scales for the self-report of affect can be replaced with new measurement tools developed in accordance to modern design principles, but also that standardized sets of stimuli which are widely adopted in research on human emotion are not as effective as they were in the past due to a general desensitization towards highly arousing content. PMID:26849361

  19. Neural Coding of Cooperative vs. Affective Human Interactions: 150 ms to Code the Action's Purpose

    PubMed Central

    Proverbio, Alice Mado; Riva, Federica; Paganelli, Laura; Cappa, Stefano F.; Canessa, Nicola; Perani, Daniela; Zani, Alberto

    2011-01-01

    The timing and neural processing of the understanding of social interactions was investigated by presenting scenes in which 2 people performed cooperative or affective actions. While the role of the human mirror neuron system (MNS) in understanding actions and intentions is widely accepted, little is known about the time course within which these aspects of visual information are automatically extracted. Event-Related Potentials were recorded in 35 university students perceiving 260 pictures of cooperative (e.g., 2 people dragging a box) or affective (e.g., 2 people smiling and holding hands) interactions. The action's goal was automatically discriminated at about 150–170 ms, as reflected by occipito/temporal N170 response. The swLORETA inverse solution revealed the strongest sources in the right posterior cingulate cortex (CC) for affective actions and in the right pSTS for cooperative actions. It was found a right hemispheric asymmetry that involved the fusiform gyrus (BA37), the posterior CC, and the medial frontal gyrus (BA10/11) for the processing of affective interactions, particularly in the 155–175 ms time window. In a later time window (200–250 ms) the processing of cooperative interactions activated the left post-central gyrus (BA3), the left parahippocampal gyrus, the left superior frontal gyrus (BA10), as well as the right premotor cortex (BA6). Women showed a greater response discriminative of the action's goal compared to men at P300 and anterior negativity level (220–500 ms). These findings might be related to a greater responsiveness of the female vs. male MNS. In addition, the discriminative effect was bilateral in women and was smaller and left-sided in men. Evidence was provided that perceptually similar social interactions are discriminated on the basis of the agents' intentions quite early in neural processing, differentially activating regions devoted to face/body/action coding, the limbic system and the MNS. PMID:21760948

  20. Do Seasons Have an Influence on the Incidence of Depression? The Use of an Internet Search Engine Query Data as a Proxy of Human Affect

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Albert C.; Huang, Norden E.; Peng, Chung-Kang; Tsai, Shih-Jen

    2010-01-01

    Background Seasonal depression has generated considerable clinical interest in recent years. Despite a common belief that people in higher latitudes are more vulnerable to low mood during the winter, it has never been demonstrated that human's moods are subject to seasonal change on a global scale. The aim of this study was to investigate large-scale seasonal patterns of depression using Internet search query data as a signature and proxy of human affect. Methodology/Principal Findings Our study was based on a publicly available search engine database, Google Insights for Search, which provides time series data of weekly search trends from January 1, 2004 to June 30, 2009. We applied an empirical mode decomposition method to isolate seasonal components of health-related search trends of depression in 54 geographic areas worldwide. We identified a seasonal trend of depression that was opposite between the northern and southern hemispheres; this trend was significantly correlated with seasonal oscillations of temperature (USA: r = −0.872, p<0.001; Australia: r = −0.656, p<0.001). Based on analyses of search trends over 54 geological locations worldwide, we found that the degree of correlation between searching for depression and temperature was latitude-dependent (northern hemisphere: r = −0.686; p<0.001; southern hemisphere: r = 0.871; p<0.0001). Conclusions/Significance Our findings indicate that Internet searches for depression from people in higher latitudes are more vulnerable to seasonal change, whereas this phenomenon is obscured in tropical areas. This phenomenon exists universally across countries, regardless of language. This study provides novel, Internet-based evidence for the epidemiology of seasonal depression. PMID:21060851

  1. Exposure to Phthalates Affects Calcium Handling and Intercellular Connectivity of Human Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes

    PubMed Central

    Posnack, Nikki Gillum; Idrees, Rabia; Ding, Hao; Jaimes III, Rafael; Stybayeva, Gulnaz; Karabekian, Zaruhi; Laflamme, Michael A.; Sarvazyan, Narine

    2015-01-01

    Background The pervasive nature of plastics has raised concerns about the impact of continuous exposure to plastic additives on human health. Of particular concern is the use of phthalates in the production of flexible polyvinyl chloride (PVC) products. Di-2-ethylhexyl-phthalate (DEHP) is a commonly used phthalate ester plasticizer that imparts flexibility and elasticity to PVC products. Recent epidemiological studies have reported correlations between urinary phthalate concentrations and cardiovascular disease, including an increased risk of high blood pressure and coronary risk. Yet, there is little direct evidence linking phthalate exposure to adverse effects in human cells, including cardiomyocytes. Methods and Results The effect of DEHP on calcium handling was examined using monolayers of gCAMP3 human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes, which contain an endogenous calcium sensor. Cardiomyocytes were exposed to DEHP (5 – 50 μg/mL), and calcium transients were recorded using a Zeiss confocal imaging system. DEHP exposure (24 – 72 hr) had a negative chronotropic and inotropic effect on cardiomyocytes, increased the minimum threshold voltage required for external pacing, and modified connexin-43 expression. Application of Wy-14,643 (100 μM), an agonist for the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha, did not replicate DEHP’s effects on calcium transient morphology or spontaneous beating rate. Conclusions Phthalates can affect the normal physiology of human cardiomyocytes, including DEHP elicited perturbations in cardiac calcium handling and intercellular connectivity. Our findings call for additional studies to clarify the extent by which phthalate exposure can alter cardiac function, particularly in vulnerable patient populations who are at risk for high phthalate exposure. PMID:25799571

  2. Training experience in gestures affects the display of social gaze in baboons' communication with a human.

    PubMed

    Bourjade, Marie; Canteloup, Charlotte; Meguerditchian, Adrien; Vauclair, Jacques; Gaunet, Florence

    2015-01-01

    Gaze behaviour, notably the alternation of gaze between distal objects and social partners that accompanies primates' gestural communication is considered a standard indicator of intentionality. However, the developmental precursors of gaze behaviour in primates' communication are not well understood. Here, we capitalized on the training in gestures dispensed to olive baboons (Papio anubis) as a way of manipulating individual communicative experience with humans. We aimed to delineate the effects of such a training experience on gaze behaviour displayed by the monkeys in relation with gestural requests. Using a food-requesting paradigm, we compared subjects trained in requesting gestures (i.e. trained subjects) to naïve subjects (i.e. control subjects) for their occurrences of (1) gaze behaviour, (2) requesting gestures and (3) temporal combination of gaze alternation with gestures. We found that training did not affect the frequencies of looking at the human's face, looking at food or alternating gaze. Hence, social gaze behaviour occurs independently from the amount of communicative experience with humans. However, trained baboons-gesturing more than control subjects-exhibited most gaze alternation combined with gestures, whereas control baboons did not. By reinforcing the display of gaze alternation along with gestures, we suggest that training may have served to enhance the communicative function of hand gestures. Finally, this study brings the first quantitative report of monkeys producing requesting gestures without explicit training by humans (controls). These results may open a window on the developmental mechanisms (i.e. incidental learning vs. training) underpinning gestural intentional communication in primates. PMID:25138999

  3. Streptococcus: A World-Wide Fish Health Problem

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Streptococcus iniae and S. agalactiae are important emergent-epizootic pathogens which affect many fish species world-wide, especially in warm-water regions. Further, these Gram-positive bacteria cause significant economic losses in marine and freshwater aquaculture systems with an estimated loss i...

  4. Factors Affecting the Absorption, Metabolism, and Excretion of Cocoa Flavanols in Humans.

    PubMed

    Cifuentes-Gomez, Tania; Rodriguez-Mateos, Ana; Gonzalez-Salvador, Isidro; Alañon, María Elena; Spencer, Jeremy P E

    2015-09-01

    Cocoa is rich in a subclass of flavonoids known as flavanols, the cardiovascular health benefits of which have been extensively reported. The appearance of flavanol metabolites in the systemic circulation after flavanol-rich food consumption is likely to mediate the physiological effects on the vascular system, and these levels are influenced by numerous factors, including food matrix, processing, intake, age, gender, or genetic polymorphisms, among others. This review will focus on our current understanding of factors affecting the absorption, metabolism, and excretion of cocoa flavanols in humans. Second, it will identify gaps in these contributing factors that need to be addressed to conclusively translate our collective knowledge into the context of public health, dietary guidelines, and evidence-based dietary recommendations. PMID:25711140

  5. Expression in cultured human neuroblastoma cells of epitopes associated with affected neurons in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed Central

    Ko, L. W.; Sheu, K. F.; Young, O.; Thaler, H.; Blass, J. P.

    1990-01-01

    Of three human neuroblastoma lines tested, IMR32K (and IMR32 parental line) was the only cell line that, after its exposure to a differentiation medium, consistently developed materials recognized immunocytochemically by a panel of antibodies against paired helical filaments (PHF). Ultrastructurally, these cells accumulated, at their perikarya and neuritic extensions, spatially discrete arrays of fibrils, which occasionally occurred in twisted pairs. When these fibrillar structures appeared as paired helices, they exhibited dimensions and configurations reminiscent of PHF found in affected Alzheimer neurons, although less compact. Immunoelectron microscope examinations of the fibrillar structures in these neuroblastoma cells with one of these anti-PHF immunoprobes revealed that only subsets of fibrillar structures that appeared thickened or aggregated to form bundles were selectively immunolabeled. Cultures of these immortal neuroblastoma lines may provide a convenient model for studying aspects of PHF formation that are hard to examine in Alzheimer brain obtained at autopsy. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 PMID:1691594

  6. Controlling a virtual forehand prosthesis using an adaptive and affective Human-Machine Interface.

    PubMed

    Rezazadeh, I Mohammad; Firoozabadi, S M P; Golpayegani, S M R Hashemi; Hu, H

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents the design of an adaptable Human-Machine Interface (HMI) for controlling virtual forearm prosthesis. Direct physical performance measures (obtained score and completion time) for the requested tasks were calculated. Furthermore, bioelectric signals from the forehead were recorded using one pair of electrodes placed on the frontal region of the subject head to extract the mental (affective) measures while performing the tasks. By employing the proposed algorithm and above measures, the proposed HMI can adapt itself to the subject's mental states, thus improving the usability of the interface. The quantitative results from 15 subjects show that the proposed HMI achieved better physical performance measures in comparison to a conventional non-adaptive myoelectric controller (p < 0.001). PMID:22255248

  7. Copper, lead and zinc concentrations of human breast milk as affected by maternal dietary practices

    SciTech Connect

    Umoren, J.; Kies, C.

    1986-03-01

    Maternal dietary practices have been found to affect the concentrations of some nutrients in human breast milk. Lead toxicity is a concern in young children. Lead, copper and zinc are thought to compete for intestinal absorption sites. The objective of the current project was to compare copper, lead and zinc contents of breast milk from practicing lacto-vegetarian and omnivore, lactating women at approximately four months post-partum. Analyses were done by atomic absorption spectrophotometry using a carbon rod attachment. Copper concentrations were higher in milk samples from lacto-ovo-vegetarians. Milk samples from the omnivores had the highest lead and zinc concentrations. Lead and copper concentrations in milk were negatively correlated. The higher zinc concentrations in the milk of the omnivore women may have been related to better utilization of zinc from meat than from plant food sources.

  8. Gangliosides do not affect ABC transporter function in human neuroblastoma cells.

    PubMed

    Dijkhuis, Anne-Jan; Klappe, Karin; Kamps, Willem; Sietsma, Hannie; Kok, Jan Willem

    2006-06-01

    Previous studies have indicated a role for glucosylceramide synthase (GCS) in multidrug resistance (MDR), either related to turnover of ceramide (Cer) or generation of gangliosides, which modulate apoptosis and/or the activity of ABC transporters. This study challenges the hypothesis that gangliosides modulate the activity of ABC transporters and was performed in two human neuroblastoma cell lines, expressing either functional P-glycoprotein (Pgp) or multidrug resistance-related protein 1 (MRP1). Two inhibitors of GCS, D,L-threo-1-phenyl-2-hexadecanoylamino-3-pyrrolidino-1-propanol (t-PPPP) and N-butyldeoxynojirimycin (NB-dNJ), very efficiently depleted ganglioside content in two human neuroblastoma cell lines. This was established by three different assays: equilibrium radiolabeling, cholera toxin binding, and mass analysis. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) analysis showed that ganglioside depletion only slightly and in the opposite direction affected Pgp- and MRP1-mediated efflux activity. Moreover, both effects were marginal compared with those of well-established inhibitors of either MRP1 (i.e., MK571) or Pgp (i.e., GF120918). t-PPPP slightly enhanced cellular sensitivity to vincristine, as determined by 3-[4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl]2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide analysis, in both neuroblastoma cell lines, whereas NB-dNJ was without effect. MRP1 expression and its localization in detergent-resistant membranes were not affected by ganglioside depletion. Together, these results show that gangliosides are not relevant to ABC transporter-mediated MDR in neuroblastoma cells. PMID:16547352

  9. Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP) Affects Global Protein Synthesis in Dividing Human Cells

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Shuang; Rambo, Brittany; Skucha, Sylvia; Weber, Megan J.; Alani, Sara; Bocchetta, Maurizio

    2015-01-01

    Hypoxic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is dependent on Notch-1 signaling for survival. Targeting Notch-1 by means of γ-secretase inhibitors (GSI) proved effective in killing hypoxic NSCLC. Post-mortem analysis of GSI-treated, NSCLC-burdened mice suggested enhanced phosphorylation of 4E-BP1 at threonines 37/46 in hypoxic tumor tissues. In vitro dissection of this phenomenon revealed that Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP) inhibition was responsible for a non-canonical 4E-BP1 phosphorylation pattern rearrangement—a process, in part, mediated by APP regulation of the pseudophosphatase Styx. Upon APP depletion we observed modifications of eIF-4F composition indicating increased recruitment of eIF-4A to the mRNA cap. This phenomenon was supported by the observation that cells with depleted APP were partially resistant to silvestrol, an antibiotic that interferes with eIF-4A assembly into eIF-4F complexes. APP downregulation in dividing human cells increased the rate of global protein synthesis, both cap- and IRES-dependent. Such an increase seemed independent of mTOR inhibition. After administration of Torin-1, APP downregulation and Mechanistic Target of Rapamycin Complex 1 (mTORC-1) inhibition affected 4E-BP1 phosphorylation and global protein synthesis in opposite fashions. Additional investigations indicated that APP operates independently of mTORC-1. Key phenomena described in this study were reversed by overexpression of the APP C-terminal domain. The presented data suggest that APP may be a novel regulator of protein synthesis in dividing human cells, both cancerous and primary. Furthermore, APP appears to affect translation initiation using mechanisms seemingly dissimilar to mTORC-1 regulation of cap-dependent protein synthesis. PMID:25283437

  10. Amyloid precursor protein (APP) affects global protein synthesis in dividing human cells.

    PubMed

    Sobol, Anna; Galluzzo, Paola; Liang, Shuang; Rambo, Brittany; Skucha, Sylvia; Weber, Megan J; Alani, Sara; Bocchetta, Maurizio

    2015-05-01

    Hypoxic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is dependent on Notch-1 signaling for survival. Targeting Notch-1 by means of γ-secretase inhibitors (GSI) proved effective in killing hypoxic NSCLC. Post-mortem analysis of GSI-treated, NSCLC-burdened mice suggested enhanced phosphorylation of 4E-BP1 at threonines 37/46 in hypoxic tumor tissues. In vitro dissection of this phenomenon revealed that Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP) inhibition was responsible for a non-canonical 4E-BP1 phosphorylation pattern rearrangement-a process, in part, mediated by APP regulation of the pseudophosphatase Styx. Upon APP depletion we observed modifications of eIF-4F composition indicating increased recruitment of eIF-4A to the mRNA cap. This phenomenon was supported by the observation that cells with depleted APP were partially resistant to silvestrol, an antibiotic that interferes with eIF-4A assembly into eIF-4F complexes. APP downregulation in dividing human cells increased the rate of global protein synthesis, both cap- and IRES-dependent. Such an increase seemed independent of mTOR inhibition. After administration of Torin-1, APP downregulation and Mechanistic Target of Rapamycin Complex 1 (mTORC-1) inhibition affected 4E-BP1 phosphorylation and global protein synthesis in opposite fashions. Additional investigations indicated that APP operates independently of mTORC-1. Key phenomena described in this study were reversed by overexpression of the APP C-terminal domain. The presented data suggest that APP may be a novel regulator of protein synthesis in dividing human cells, both cancerous and primary. Furthermore, APP appears to affect translation initiation using mechanisms seemingly dissimilar to mTORC-1 regulation of cap-dependent protein synthesis. PMID:25283437

  11. Worldwide Spread of Dengue Virus Type 1

    PubMed Central

    Villabona-Arenas, Christian Julián; Zanotto, Paolo Marinho de Andrade

    2013-01-01

    Background DENV-1 is one of the four viral serotypes that causes Dengue, the most common mosquito-borne viral disease of humans. The prevalence of these viruses has grown in recent decades and is now present in more than 100 countries. Limited studies document the spread of DENV-1 over the world despite its importance for human health. Methodology/Principal Findings We used representative DENV-1 envelope gene sequences to unravel the dynamics of viral diffusion under a Bayesian phylogeographic approach. Data included strains from 45 distinct geographic locations isolated from 1944 to 2009. The estimated mean rate of nucleotide substitution was 6.56×10−4 substitutions/site/year. The larger genotypes (I, IV and V) had a distinctive phylogenetic structure and since 1990 they experienced effective population size oscillations. Thailand and Indonesia represented the main sources of strains for neighboring countries. Besides, Asia broadcast lineages into the Americas and the Pacific region that diverged in isolation. Also, a transmission network analysis revealed the pivotal role of Indochina in the global diffusion of DENV-1 and of the Caribbean in the diffusion over the Americas. Conclusions/Significance The study summarizes the spatiotemporal DENV-1 worldwide spread that may help disease control. PMID:23675416

  12. Does cannabis affect dopaminergic signaling in the human brain? A systematic review of evidence to date.

    PubMed

    Sami, Musa Basser; Rabiner, Eugenii A; Bhattacharyya, Sagnik

    2015-08-01

    A significant body of epidemiological evidence has linked psychotic symptoms with both acute and chronic use of cannabis. Precisely how these effects of THC are mediated at the neurochemical level is unclear. While abnormalities in multiple pathways may lead to schizophrenia, an abnormality in dopamine neurotransmission is considered to be the final common abnormality. One would thus expect cannabis use to be associated with dopamine signaling alterations. This is the first systematic review of all studies, both observational as well as experimental, examining the acute as well as chronic effect of cannabis or its main psychoactive ingredient, THC, on the dopamine system in man. We aimed to review all studies conducted in man, with any reported neurochemical outcomes related to the dopamine system after cannabis, cannabinoid or endocannabinoid administration or use. We identified 25 studies reporting outcomes on over 568 participants, of which 244 participants belonged to the cannabis/cannabinoid exposure group. In man, there is as yet little direct evidence to suggest that cannabis use affects acute striatal dopamine release or affects chronic dopamine receptor status in healthy human volunteers. However some work has suggested that acute cannabis exposure increases dopamine release in striatal and pre-frontal areas in those genetically predisposed for, or at clinical high risk of psychosis. Furthermore, recent studies are suggesting that chronic cannabis use blunts dopamine synthesis and dopamine release capacity. Further well-designed studies are required to definitively delineate the effects of cannabis use on the dopaminergic system in man. PMID:26068702

  13. Schizophrenia susceptibility alleles are enriched for alleles that affect gene expression in adult human brain

    PubMed Central

    Richards, Alexander L; Jones, Lesley; Moskvina, Valentina; Kirov, George; Gejman, Pablo V; Levinson, Douglas F; Sanders, Alan R; Purcell, Shaun; Visscher, Peter M; Craddock, Nick; Owen, Michael J; Holmans, Peter; O’Donovan, Michael C

    2016-01-01

    It is widely thought that alleles that influence susceptibility to common diseases, including schizophrenia, will frequently do so through effects on gene expression. Since only a small proportion of the genetic variance for schizophrenia has been attributed to specific loci, this remains an unproven hypothesis. The International Schizophrenia Consortium (ISC) recently reported a substantial polygenic contribution to that disorder, and that schizophrenia risk alleles are enriched among SNPs selected for marginal evidence for association (p<0.5) from genome wide association studies (GWAS). It follows that if schizophrenia susceptibility alleles are enriched for those that affect gene expression, those marginally associated SNPs which are also eQTLs should carry more true association signals compared with SNPs which are not. To test this, we identified marginally associated (p<0.5) SNPs from two of the largest available schizophrenia GWAS datasets. We assigned eQTL status to those SNPs based upon an eQTL dataset derived from adult human brain. Using the polygenic score method of analysis reported by the ISC, we observed and replicated the observation that higher probability cis-eQTLs predicted schizophrenia better than those with a lower probability for being a cis-eQTL. Our data support the hypothesis that alleles conferring risk of schizophrenia are enriched among those that affect gene expression. Moreover, our data show that notwithstanding the likely developmental origin of schizophrenia, studies of adult brain tissue can in principle allow relevant susceptibility eQTLs to be identified. PMID:21339752

  14. Azithromycin differentially affects the IL-13-induced expression profile in human bronchial epithelial cells.

    PubMed

    Mertens, Tinne C J; Hiemstra, Pieter S; Taube, Christian

    2016-08-01

    The T helper 2 (Th2) cytokine interleukin(IL)-13 is a central regulator in goblet cell metaplasia and induces the recently described Th2 gene signature consisting of periostin (POSTN), chloride channel regulator 1 (CLCA1) and serpin B2 (SERPINB2) in airway epithelial cells. This Th2 gene signature has been proposed as a biomarker to classify asthma into Th2-high and Th2-low phenotypes. Clinical studies have shown that the macrolide antibiotic azithromycin reduced clinical symptoms in neutrophilic asthma, but not in the classical Th2-mediated asthma despite the ability of azithromycin to reduce IL-13-induced mucus production. We therefore hypothesize that azithromycin differentially affects the IL-13-induced expression profile. To investigate this, we focus on IL-13-induced mucin and Th2-signature expression in human bronchial epithelial cells and how this combined expression profile is affected by azithromycin treatment. Primary bronchial epithelial cells were differentiated at air liquid interface in presence of IL-13 with or without azithromycin. Azithromycin inhibited IL-13-induced MUC5AC, which was accompanied by inhibition of IL-13-induced CLCA1 and SERPINB2 expression. In contrast, IL-13-induced expression of POSTN was further increased in cells treated with azithromycin. This indicates that azithromycin has a differential effect on the IL-13-induced Th2 gene signature. Furthermore, the ability of azithromycin to decrease IL-13-induced MUC5AC expression may be mediated by a reduction in CLCA1. PMID:27246785

  15. Human resources management and firm performance: The differential role of managerial affective and continuance commitment.

    PubMed

    Gong, Yaping; Law, Kenneth S; Chang, Song; Xin, Katherine R

    2009-01-01

    In this study, the authors developed a dual-concern (i.e., maintenance and performance) model of human resources (HR) management. The authors identified commonly examined HR practices that apply to the middle manager level and classified them into the maintenance- and performance-oriented HR subsystems. The authors found support for the 2-factor model on the basis of responses from 2,148 managers from 463 firms operating in China. Regression results indicate that the performance-oriented HR subsystems had a positive relationship with firm performance and that the relationship was mediated by middle managers' affective commitment to the firm. The maintenance-oriented HR subsystems had a positive relationship with middle managers' continuance commitment but not with their affective commitment and firm performance. This study contributes to the understanding of how HR practices relate to firm performance and offers an improved test of the argument that valuable and firm-specific HR provide a source of competitive advantage. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved). PMID:19186911

  16. Glyceroglycolipids Affect Uptake of Carotenoids Solubilized in Mixed Micelles by Human Intestinal Caco-2 Cells.

    PubMed

    Kotake-Nara, Eiichi; Yonekura, Lina; Nagao, Akihiko

    2015-09-01

    We previously reported that phospholipids markedly affected the uptake of carotenoids solubilized in mixed micelles by human intestinal Caco-2 cells. In the present study, we found that two classes of dietary glyceroglycolipids and the corresponding lysoglyceroglycolipids affected uptake of β-carotene and lutein by differentiated Caco-2 cells. The levels of carotenoid uptake from micelles containing digalactosyldiacylglycerol or sulfoquinovosyldiacylglycerol were significantly lower than that from control micelles. On the other hand, the uptakes from micelles containing digalactosylmonoacylglycerol or sulfoquinovosylmonoacylglycerol were significantly higher than that from control micelles. In dispersed cells and Caco-2 cells with poor cell-to-cell adhesion, however, the levels of uptake from micelles containing these lyso-lipids were much lower than that from control micelles. The uptake levels from control micelles were markedly decreased depending on the development of cell-to-cell/cell-matrix adhesion in Caco-2 cells, but the uptake levels from the micelles containing these lyso-lipids were not substantially changed, suggesting that the intercellular barrier formed by cell-to-cell/cell-matrix adhesion inhibited the uptake from control micelles, but not from the lyso-lipid-containing micelles. The lyso-lipids appeared to enhance carotenoid uptake by decreasing the intercellular barrier integrity. The results showed that some types of glyceroglycolipids have the potential to modify the intestinal uptake of carotenoids. PMID:26012480

  17. Mutant Huntingtin Does Not Affect the Intrinsic Phenotype of Human Huntington’s Disease T Lymphocytes

    PubMed Central

    Miller, James R. C.; Träger, Ulrike; Andre, Ralph; Tabrizi, Sarah J.

    2015-01-01

    Huntington’s disease is a fatal neurodegenerative condition caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. The peripheral innate immune system is dysregulated in Huntington’s disease and may contribute to its pathogenesis. However, it is not clear whether or to what extent the adaptive immune system is also involved. Here, we carry out the first comprehensive investigation of human ex vivo T lymphocytes in Huntington’s disease, focusing on the frequency of a range of T lymphocyte subsets, as well as analysis of proliferation, cytokine production and gene transcription. In contrast to the innate immune system, the intrinsic phenotype of T lymphocytes does not appear to be affected by the presence of mutant huntingtin, with Huntington’s disease T lymphocytes exhibiting no significant functional differences compared to control cells. The transcriptional profile of T lymphocytes also does not appear to be significantly affected, suggesting that peripheral immune dysfunction in Huntington’s disease is likely to be mediated primarily by the innate rather than the adaptive immune system. This study increases our understanding of the effects of Huntington’s disease on peripheral tissues, while further demonstrating the differential effects of the mutant protein on different but related cell types. Finally, this study suggests that the potential use of novel therapeutics aimed at modulating the Huntington’s disease innate immune system should not be extended to include the adaptive immune system. PMID:26529236

  18. Rewards, aversions and affect in adolescence: Emerging convergences across laboratory animal and human data

    PubMed Central

    Spear, Linda Patia

    2011-01-01

    The adolescent transition is associated with increases in reward- and sensation-seeking, peer-directed social interactions, and risk-taking, with exploratory use of alcohol and other drugs often beginning at this time. These age-related behaviors may have biological roots embedded in the evolutionary past, with similar adolescent-typical characteristics evident across a variety of mammalian species. Drawing across human behavioral and fMRI data and studies conducting in laboratory animals, this review examines processing of rewards, aversions, and affect in adolescence. Evidence for both hyper- and hypo-reactivity during adolescence in the processing of rewards is reviewed, along with possible contributors to these differences. Indications of sometimes heightened reward reactivity during adolescence are contrasted with frequent attenuations in adolescent sensitivity to aversive stimuli. At the same time, adolescents appear particularly prone to becoming emotionally aroused, especially in social contexts. Emerging evidence hints that exaggerated adolescent reactivity in reward and affective systems may be promoted in part by unusual strong cross-reactivity between these systems during adolescence. Such age-related propensities may promote adolescent risk taking, especially in social and exciting contexts, and contribute to adolescent-typical propensities to attach greater benefit and less cost to risky behaviors such as alcohol and drug use than individuals at other ages. PMID:21918675

  19. Quiescence does not affect p53 and stress response by irradiation in human lung fibroblasts

    SciTech Connect

    Dai, Jiawen; Itahana, Koji; Baskar, Rajamanickam

    2015-02-27

    Cells in many organs exist in both proliferating and quiescent states. Proliferating cells are more radio-sensitive, DNA damage pathways including p53 pathway are activated to undergo either G{sub 1}/S or G{sub 2}/M arrest to avoid entering S and M phase with DNA damage. On the other hand, quiescent cells are already arrested in G{sub 0}, therefore there may be fundamental difference of irradiation response between proliferating and quiescent cells, and this difference may affect their radiosensitivity. To understand these differences, proliferating and quiescent human normal lung fibroblasts were exposed to 0.10–1 Gy of γ-radiation. The response of key proteins involved in the cell cycle, cell death, and metabolism as well as histone H2AX phosphorylation were examined. Interestingly, p53 and p53 phosphorylation (Ser-15), as well as the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors p21 and p27, were induced similarly in both proliferating and quiescent cells after irradiation. Furthermore, the p53 protein half-life, and expression of cyclin A, cyclin E, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), Bax, or cytochrome c expression as well as histone H2AX phosphorylation were comparable after irradiation in both phases of cells. The effect of radioprotection by a glycogen synthase kinase 3β inhibitor on p53 pathway was also similar between proliferating and quiescent cells. Our results showed that quiescence does not affect irradiation response of key proteins involved in stress and DNA damage at least in normal fibroblasts, providing a better understanding of the radiation response in quiescent cells, which is crucial for tissue repair and regeneration. - Highlights: • p53 response by irradiation was similar between proliferating and quiescent cells. • Quiescent cells showed similar profiles of cell cycle proteins after irradiation. • Radioprotection of GSK-3β inhibitor caused similar effects between these cells. • Quiescence did not affect p53 response despite its

  20. Larval food quantity affects the capacity of adult mosquitoes to transmit human malaria.

    PubMed

    Shapiro, Lillian L M; Murdock, Courtney C; Jacobs, Gregory R; Thomas, Rachel J; Thomas, Matthew B

    2016-07-13

    Adult traits of holometabolous insects are shaped by conditions experienced during larval development, which might impact interactions between adult insect hosts and parasites. However, the ecology of larval insects that vector disease remains poorly understood. Here, we used Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes and the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, to investigate whether larval conditions affect the capacity of adult mosquitoes to transmit malaria. We reared larvae in two groups; one group received a standard laboratory rearing diet, whereas the other received a reduced diet. Emerging adult females were then provided an infectious blood meal. We assessed mosquito longevity, parasite development rate and prevalence of infectious mosquitoes over time. Reduced larval food led to increased adult mortality and caused a delay in parasite development and a slowing in the rate at which parasites invaded the mosquito salivary glands, extending the time it took for mosquitoes to become infectious. Together, these effects increased transmission potential of mosquitoes in the high food regime by 260-330%. Such effects have not, to our knowledge, been shown previously for human malaria and highlight the importance of improving knowledge of larval ecology to better understand vector-borne disease transmission dynamics. PMID:27412284

  1. 50 Hz sinusoidal magnetic fields do not affect human lymphocyte activation and proliferation in vitro

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Capri, Miriam; Mesirca, Pietro; Remondini, Daniel; Carosella, Simona; Pasi, Sara; Castellani, Gastone; Franceschi, Claudio; Bersani, Ferdinando

    2004-12-01

    In the last 30 years, an increasing public concern about the possible harmful effects of electromagnetic fields generated by power lines and domestic appliances has pushed the scientific community to search for a correct and comprehensive answer to this problem. In this work the effects of exposure to 50 Hz sinusoidal magnetic fields, with a magnetic flux density of 0.05 mT and 2.5 mT (peak values), were studied on human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) collected from healthy young and elderly donors. Cell activation and proliferation were investigated by using flow cytometry techniques and 3H-TdR incorporation assays, respectively. The results obtained indicated that exposure to the fields altered neither DNA synthesis nor the capacity of lymphocytes to enter the activation phase and progress into the cell cycle. Thus, the conclusions are that two important functional phases of human lymphocytes, such as activation and proliferation, are not affected by exposures to 50 Hz magnetic fields similar to those found under power lines.

  2. Larval food quantity affects the capacity of adult mosquitoes to transmit human malaria

    PubMed Central

    Shapiro, Lillian L. M.; Murdock, Courtney C.; Jacobs, Gregory R.; Thomas, Rachel J.; Thomas, Matthew B.

    2016-01-01

    Adult traits of holometabolous insects are shaped by conditions experienced during larval development, which might impact interactions between adult insect hosts and parasites. However, the ecology of larval insects that vector disease remains poorly understood. Here, we used Anopheles stephensi mosquitoes and the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, to investigate whether larval conditions affect the capacity of adult mosquitoes to transmit malaria. We reared larvae in two groups; one group received a standard laboratory rearing diet, whereas the other received a reduced diet. Emerging adult females were then provided an infectious blood meal. We assessed mosquito longevity, parasite development rate and prevalence of infectious mosquitoes over time. Reduced larval food led to increased adult mortality and caused a delay in parasite development and a slowing in the rate at which parasites invaded the mosquito salivary glands, extending the time it took for mosquitoes to become infectious. Together, these effects increased transmission potential of mosquitoes in the high food regime by 260–330%. Such effects have not, to our knowledge, been shown previously for human malaria and highlight the importance of improving knowledge of larval ecology to better understand vector-borne disease transmission dynamics. PMID:27412284

  3. Lead and cadmium at very low doses affect in vitro immune response of human lymphocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Borella, P.; Giardino, A. )

    1991-08-01

    The effect of lead chloride and cadmium chloride on in vitro immunoglobulin (Ig) production by human lymphocytes was investigated. After 7 days in culture, lead added in the range of human exposure (207-1035 {mu}g/liter) significantly enhanced Ig production either when cells were activated by pokeweed mitogen (PWM) or not. The effect was dose-dependent and was related to the Pb were measured in the extracellular medium and in the cells. Independently of the mitogen addition, about 2% of the Pb added was accumulated in the cells, most being associated with the nuclear fraction. Those findings suggest that the Pb effects could depend on its uptake and distribution in the cells. Cadmium added in the 50-500 nM range exhibited a dose-independent mitogenic activity in unstimulated cells, whereas the Ig secretion was not significantly affected by Cd when cells were PWM-activated. A considerable intraindividual variability, however, was observed when blood donors were separately examined, with both an increase, a decrease, or no variation on Ig production. Furthermore, higher percentages of Cd were accumulated in the nuclear fraction, and lower in the cytosol and precipitate, in PWM-activated compared to resting lymphocytes. Genetic factors could be of importance for the observed variability of the immune response to cadmium, and the authors support the hypothesis that differences in the metallothionein (MT) inducibility could play a role.

  4. Interacting Physical and Biological Processes Affecting Nutrient Transport Through Human Dominated Landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finlay, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    Human activities increasingly dominate biogeochemical cycles of limiting nutrients on Earth. Urban and agricultural landscapes represent the largest sources of excess nutrients that drive water quality degradation. The physical structure of both urban and agricultural watersheds has been extensively modified, and these changes have large impacts on water and nutrient transport. Despite strong physical controls over nutrient transport in human dominated landscapes, biological processes play important roles in determining the fates of both nitrogen and phosphorus. This talk uses examples from research in urban and agricultural watersheds in the Midwestern USA to illustrate interactions of physical and biological controls over nutrient cycles that have shifted nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) sources and cycling in unexpected ways in response to management changes. In urban watersheds, efforts to improve water quality have been hindered by legacy sources of phosphorus added to storm water through transport to drainage systems by vegetation. Similarly, reductions in field erosion in agricultural watersheds have not led to major reductions in phosphorus transport, because of continued release of biological sources of P. Where management of phosphorus has been most effective in reducing eutrophication of lakes, decreases in N removal processes have led to long term increases in N concentration and transport. Together, these examples show important roles for biological processes affecting nutrient movement in highly modified landscapes. Consideration of the downstream physical and biological responses of management changes are thus critical toward identification of actions that will most effectively reduce excess nutrients watersheds and coastal zones.

  5. Surface chemical functionalities affect the behavior of human adipose-derived stem cells in vitro

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Xujie; Feng, Qingling; Bachhuka, Akash; Vasilev, Krasimir

    2013-04-01

    This study examines the effect of surface chemical functionalities on the behavior of human adipose-derived stem cells (hASCs) in vitro. Plasma polymerized films rich in amine (sbnd NH2), carboxyl (sbnd COOH) and methyl (sbnd CH3), were generated on hydroxyapatite (HAp) substrates. The surface chemical functionalities were characterized by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The ability of different substrates to absorb proteins was evaluated. The results showed that substrates modified with hydrophilic functional group (sbnd COOH and sbnd NH2) can absorb more proteins than these modified with more hydrophobic functional group (sbnd CH3). The behavior of human adipose-derived stem cells (hASCs) cultured on different substrates was investigated in vitro: cell counting kit-8 (CCK-8) analysis was used to characterize cell proliferation, scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) analysis was used to characterize cell morphology and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity analysis was used to account for differentiation. The results of this study demonstrated that the sbnd NH2 modified surfaces encourage osteogenic differentiation; the sbnd COOH modified surfaces promote cell adhesion and spreading and the sbnd CH3 modified surfaces have the lowest ability to induce osteogenic differentiation. These findings confirmed that the surface chemical states of biomaterials can affect the behavior of hASCs in vitro.

  6. Human Apolipoprotein E Isoforms differentially affect Bone Mass and Turnover in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Dieckmann, Marco; Beil, F. Timo; Mueller, Brigitte; Bartelt, Alexander; Marshall, Robert P.; Koehne, Till; Amling, Michael; Ruether, Wolfgang; Cooper, Jackie A.; Humphries, Steve E.; Herz, Joachim; Niemeier, Andreas

    2012-01-01

    The primary role of apolipoprotein E (apoE) is to mediate the cellular uptake of lipoproteins. However, a new role for apoE as a regulator of bone metabolism in mice has recently been established. In contrast to mice, the human APOE gene is characterized by three common isoforms APOE ε2, ε3 and ε4 that result in different metabolic properties of the apoE isoforms, but it remains controversial whether the APOE polymorphism influences bone traits in humans. To clarify this, we investigated bone phenotypes of apoE knock-in mice, which express one human isoform each (apoE2 k.i., apoE3 k.i., apoE4 k.i.) in place of the mouse apoE. Analysis of 12 week-old female knock-in mice revealed increased levels of biochemical bone formation and resorption markers in apoE2 k.i. animals as compared to apoE3 k.i. and apoE4 k.i., with a reduced OPG/RANKL ratio in apoE2 k.i., indicating increased turnover with prevailing resorption in apoE2 k.i.. Accordingly, histomorphometric and μCT analyses demonstrated significantly lower trabecular bone mass in apoE2 than in apoE3 and apoE4 k.i. animals, which was reflected by a significant reduction of lumbar vertebrae maximum force resistance. Unlike trabecular bone, femoral cortical thickness, and stability was not differentially affected by the apoE isoforms. To extend these observations to the human situation, plasma from middle-aged healthy men homozygous for ε2/ε2, ε3/ε3, and ε4/ε4 (n=21, n=80, n=55 respectively) was analyzed with regard to bone turnover markers. In analogy to apoE2 k.i. mice, a lower OPG/RANKL ratio was observed in the serum of ε2/ε2 carriers as compared to ε3/ε3 and ε4/ε4 individuals (p=0.02 for ε2/ε2 vs ε4/ε4). In conclusion, the current data strongly underline the general importance of apoE as a regulator of bone metabolism and identifies the APOE ε2 allele as a potential genetic risk factor for low trabecular bone mass and vertebral fractures in humans. PMID:22991192

  7. Systemic Inflammation Affects Human Osteocyte-Specific Protein and Cytokine Expression.

    PubMed

    Pathak, Janak L; Bakker, Astrid D; Luyten, Frank P; Verschueren, Patrick; Lems, Willem F; Klein-Nulend, Jenneke; Bravenboer, Nathalie

    2016-06-01

    Bone remodeling can be disturbed in active rheumatoid arthritis (RA), possibly as a result of elevated levels of circulating inflammatory cytokines. Osteocyte-specific proteins and cytokines play a vital role in bone remodeling by orchestrating bone formation and/or bone resorption. Therefore, we aimed to investigate the effect of RA-serum or inflammatory cytokines on expression of human osteocyte-specific proteins and cytokines. Human trabecular bone chips were cultured with RA-serum or inflammatory cytokines for 7-days. Live-dead staining was performed to assess cell viability. Gene expression of osteocyte-specific proteins and cytokines was analyzed by qPCR. Immuno-staining was performed for osteocyte-specific markers. Approximately 60 % of the osteocytes on the bone chips were alive at day-7. Cells in or on the bone chips did express the gene for osteocyte markers SOST, FGF23, DMP1, and MEPE, and the cytokines IL-1β, IL-6, and TNFα at day 0 and 7. Active RA-serum treatment enhanced IL-1β, TNFα, SOST, and DKK1 gene expression. IL-1β treatment enhanced IL-1β, TNFα, IL-6, IL-8, FGF23, and SOST gene expression. TNFα treatment enhanced IL-1β, TNFα, IL-6, IL-8, and FGF23 gene expression. IL-8 treatment enhanced TNFα, IL-8, and FGF23 gene expression. A combination of IL-1β, IL-6, and TNFα treatment synergistically upregulated IL-1β, IL-6, and IL-8 gene expression, as well as enhanced TNFα, OPG, SOST, and FGF23, and inhibited DKK1 gene expression. In conclusion, gene expression of human osteocyte-specific proteins and cytokines was affected by RA-serum, and exogenous recombinant cytokines treatment suggesting that osteocytes could provide a new target to prevent systemic inflammation-induced bone loss in RA. PMID:26887974

  8. Anthocyanidins modulate the activity of human DNA topoisomerases I and II and affect cellular DNA integrity.

    PubMed

    Habermeyer, Michael; Fritz, Jessica; Barthelmes, Hans U; Christensen, Morten O; Larsen, Morten K; Boege, Fritz; Marko, Doris

    2005-09-01

    In the present study, we investigated the effect of anthocyanidins on human topoisomerases I and II and its relevance for DNA integrity within human cells. Anthocyanidins bearing vicinal hydroxy groups at the B-ring (delphinidin, DEL; cyanidin, CY) were found to potently inhibit the catalytic activity of human topoisomerases I and II, without discriminating between the IIalpha and the IIbeta isoforms. However, in contrast to topoisomerase poisons, DEL and CY did not stabilize the covalent DNA-topoisomerase intermediates (cleavable complex) of topoisomerase I or II. Using recombinant topoisomerase I, the presence of CY or DEL (> or = 1 microM) effectively prohibited the stabilization of the cleavable complex by the topoisomerase I poison camptothecin. We furthermore investigated whether the potential protective effect vs topoisomerase I poisons is reflected also on the cellular level, affecting the DNA damaging properties of camptothecin. Indeed, in HT29 cells, low micromolar concentrations of DEL (1-10 microM) significantly diminished the DNA strand breaking effect of camptothecin (100 microM). However, at concentrations > or = 50 microM, all anthocyanidins tested (delphinidin, cyanidin, malvidin, pelargonidin, and paeonidin), including those not interfering with topoisomerases, were found to induce DNA strand breaks in the comet assay. All of these analogues were able to compete with ethidium bromide for the intercalation into calf thymus DNA and to replace the minor groove binder Hoechst 33258. These data indicate substantial affinity to double-stranded DNA, which might contribute at least to the DNA strand breaking effect of anthocyanidins at higher concentrations (> or = 50 microM). PMID:16167831

  9. Factors affecting human heterocyclic amine intake and the metabolism of PhIP.

    PubMed

    Knize, Mark G; Kulp, Kristen S; Salmon, Cynthia P; Keating, Garrett A; Felton, James S

    2002-09-30

    We are working to understand possible human health effects from exposure to heterocyclic amines that are formed in meat during cooking. Laboratory-cooked beef, pork, and chicken are capable of producing tens of nanograms of MeIQx, IFP, and PhIP per gram of meat and smaller amounts of other heteroyclic amines. Well-done restaurant-cooked beef, pork, and chicken may contain PhIP and IFP at concentrations as high as tens of nanograms per gram and MeIQx at levels up to 3 ng/g. Although well-done chicken breast prepared in the laboratory may contain large amounts of PhIP, a survey of flame-grilled meat samples cooked in private homes showed PhIP levels in beef steak and chicken breast are not significantly different (P=0.36). The extremely high PhIP levels reported in some studies of grilled chicken are not seen in home-cooked samples.Many studies suggest individuals may have varying susceptibility to carcinogens and that diet may influence metabolism, thus affecting cancer susceptibility. To understand the human metabolism of PhIP, we examined urinary metabolites of PhIP in volunteers following a single well-done meat exposure. Using solid-phase extraction and LC/MS/MS, we quantified four major PhIP metabolites in human urine. In addition to investigating individual variation, we examined the interaction of PhIP with a potentially chemopreventive food. In a preliminary study of the effect of broccoli on PhIP metabolism, we fed chicken to six volunteers before and after eating steamed broccoli daily for 3 days. Preliminary results suggest that broccoli, which contains isothiocyanates shown to induce Phases I and II metabolism in vitro, may affect both the rate of metabolite excretion and the metabolic products of a dietary carcinogen. This newly developed methodology will allow us to assess prevention strategies that reduce the possible risks associated with PhIP exposure. PMID:12351155

  10. 75 FR 51273 - Expanded Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Testing for Disproportionately Affected Populations

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-19

    ... (HIV) Testing for Disproportionately Affected Populations AGENCY: Centers for Disease Control and... Affected Populations''. Additional funding from the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has been... (HIV) Testing for Disproportionately Affected Populations'' to make awards to state and county...

  11. Early developmental gene enhancers affect subcortical volumes in the adult human brain.

    PubMed

    Becker, Martin; Guadalupe, Tulio; Franke, Barbara; Hibar, Derrek P; Renteria, Miguel E; Stein, Jason L; Thompson, Paul M; Francks, Clyde; Vernes, Sonja C; Fisher, Simon E

    2016-05-01

    Genome-wide association screens aim to identify common genetic variants contributing to the phenotypic variability of complex traits, such as human height or brain morphology. The identified genetic variants are mostly within noncoding genomic regions and the biology of the genotype-phenotype association typically remains unclear. In this article, we propose a complementary targeted strategy to reveal the genetic underpinnings of variability in subcortical brain volumes, by specifically selecting genomic loci that are experimentally validated forebrain enhancers, active in early embryonic development. We hypothesized that genetic variation within these enhancers may affect the development and ultimately the structure of subcortical brain regions in adults. We tested whether variants in forebrain enhancer regions showed an overall enrichment of association with volumetric variation in subcortical structures of >13,000 healthy adults. We observed significant enrichment of genomic loci that affect the volume of the hippocampus within forebrain enhancers (empirical P = 0.0015), a finding which robustly passed the adjusted threshold for testing of multiple brain phenotypes (cutoff of P < 0.0083 at an alpha of 0.05). In analyses of individual single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), we identified an association upstream of the ID2 gene with rs7588305 and variation in hippocampal volume. This SNP-based association survived multiple-testing correction for the number of SNPs analyzed but not for the number of subcortical structures. Targeting known regulatory regions offers a way to understand the underlying biology that connects genotypes to phenotypes, particularly in the context of neuroimaging genetics. This biology-driven approach generates testable hypotheses regarding the functional biology of identified associations. Hum Brain Mapp 37:1788-1800, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26890892

  12. Pyoverdine and proteases affect the response of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to gallium in human serum.

    PubMed

    Bonchi, Carlo; Frangipani, Emanuela; Imperi, Francesco; Visca, Paolo

    2015-09-01

    Gallium is an iron mimetic which has recently been repurposed as an antibacterial agent due to its capability to disrupt bacterial iron metabolism. In this study, the antibacterial activity of gallium nitrate [Ga(NO3)3] was investigated in complement-free human serum (HS) on 55 Pseudomonas aeruginosa clinical isolates from cystic fibrosis and non-cystic fibrosis patients. The susceptibility of P. aeruginosa to Ga(NO3)3 in HS was dependent on the bacterial ability to acquire iron from serum binding proteins (i.e., transferrin). The extent of serum protein degradation correlated well with P. aeruginosa growth in HS, while pyoverdine production did not. However, pyoverdine-deficient P. aeruginosa strains were unable to grow in HS and overcome iron restriction, albeit capable of releasing proteases. Predigestion of HS with proteinase K promoted the growth of all strains, irrespective of their ability to produce proteases and/or pyoverdine. The MICs of Ga(NO3)3 were higher in HS than in an iron-poor Casamino Acids medium, where proteolysis does not affect iron availability. Coherently, strains displaying high proteolytic activity were less susceptible to Ga(NO3)3 in HS. Our data support a model in which both pyoverdine and proteases affect the response of P. aeruginosa to Ga(NO3)3 in HS. The relatively high Ga(NO3)3 concentration required to inhibit the growth of highly proteolytic P. aeruginosa isolates in HS poses a limitation to the potential of Ga(NO3)3 in the treatment of P. aeruginosa bloodstream infections. PMID:26149986

  13. Quiescence does not affect p53 and stress response by irradiation in human lung fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Dai, Jiawen; Itahana, Koji; Baskar, Rajamanickam

    2015-02-27

    Cells in many organs exist in both proliferating and quiescent states. Proliferating cells are more radio-sensitive, DNA damage pathways including p53 pathway are activated to undergo either G1/S or G2/M arrest to avoid entering S and M phase with DNA damage. On the other hand, quiescent cells are already arrested in G0, therefore there may be fundamental difference of irradiation response between proliferating and quiescent cells, and this difference may affect their radiosensitivity. To understand these differences, proliferating and quiescent human normal lung fibroblasts were exposed to 0.10-1 Gy of γ-radiation. The response of key proteins involved in the cell cycle, cell death, and metabolism as well as histone H2AX phosphorylation were examined. Interestingly, p53 and p53 phosphorylation (Ser-15), as well as the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors p21 and p27, were induced similarly in both proliferating and quiescent cells after irradiation. Furthermore, the p53 protein half-life, and expression of cyclin A, cyclin E, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), Bax, or cytochrome c expression as well as histone H2AX phosphorylation were comparable after irradiation in both phases of cells. The effect of radioprotection by a glycogen synthase kinase 3β inhibitor on p53 pathway was also similar between proliferating and quiescent cells. Our results showed that quiescence does not affect irradiation response of key proteins involved in stress and DNA damage at least in normal fibroblasts, providing a better understanding of the radiation response in quiescent cells, which is crucial for tissue repair and regeneration. PMID:25637534

  14. Pyoverdine and Proteases Affect the Response of Pseudomonas aeruginosa to Gallium in Human Serum

    PubMed Central

    Bonchi, Carlo; Frangipani, Emanuela; Imperi, Francesco

    2015-01-01

    Gallium is an iron mimetic which has recently been repurposed as an antibacterial agent due to its capability to disrupt bacterial iron metabolism. In this study, the antibacterial activity of gallium nitrate [Ga(NO3)3] was investigated in complement-free human serum (HS) on 55 Pseudomonas aeruginosa clinical isolates from cystic fibrosis and non-cystic fibrosis patients. The susceptibility of P. aeruginosa to Ga(NO3)3 in HS was dependent on the bacterial ability to acquire iron from serum binding proteins (i.e., transferrin). The extent of serum protein degradation correlated well with P. aeruginosa growth in HS, while pyoverdine production did not. However, pyoverdine-deficient P. aeruginosa strains were unable to grow in HS and overcome iron restriction, albeit capable of releasing proteases. Predigestion of HS with proteinase K promoted the growth of all strains, irrespective of their ability to produce proteases and/or pyoverdine. The MICs of Ga(NO3)3 were higher in HS than in an iron-poor Casamino Acids medium, where proteolysis does not affect iron availability. Coherently, strains displaying high proteolytic activity were less susceptible to Ga(NO3)3 in HS. Our data support a model in which both pyoverdine and proteases affect the response of P. aeruginosa to Ga(NO3)3 in HS. The relatively high Ga(NO3)3 concentration required to inhibit the growth of highly proteolytic P. aeruginosa isolates in HS poses a limitation to the potential of Ga(NO3)3 in the treatment of P. aeruginosa bloodstream infections. PMID:26149986

  15. Factors affecting disease-free survival in patients with human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-positive breast cancer who receive adjuvant trastuzumab

    PubMed Central

    GÜNDÜZ, SEYDA; GÖKSU, SEMA SEZGIN; ARSLAN, DENIZ; TATLI, ALI MURAT; UYSAL, MÜKREMIN; GÜNDÜZ, UMUT RIZA; SEVINÇ, MERT MAHSUNI; COŞKUN, HASAN SENOL; BOZCUK, HAKAN; MUTLU, HASAN; SAVAS, BURHAN

    2015-01-01

    Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in women worldwide and the second cause of cancer-related mortality. A total of 20–30% of patients with early-stage breast cancer develop recurrence within the first 5 years following diagnosis. Trastuzumab significantly improves overall survival and disease-free survival (DFS) in women with human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive early and locally advanced breast cancer. This study aimed to determine the factors that affect DFS following adjuvant transtuzumab therapy. A total of 62 patients treated with trastuzumab for early and locally advanced breast cancer were included in our study. Data, including pathology, treatment and treatment outcome, rate of recurrence and laboratory tests, were retrospectively collected. There was no significant association between DFS and age, menopausal status, disease stage and hormone receptor status. The median follow-up was 48.4 months. The median DFS of patients treated with adjuvant trastuzumab was 64.1 months. In addition, the median DFS was 44.3 vs. 66.8 months in patients with platelet-lymphocyte ratio (PLR) ≤200 vs. >200, respectively (log-rank test; P=0.001), and 70 vs. 45 months in patients with eosinophil count ≤70 vs. >70×103/mm3 (log-rank test; P=0.001). Our data revealed the prognostic relevance of a decrease in the peripheral blood eosinophil count and PLR value following trastuzumab therapy in breast cancer. PLR and eosinophil count measurements are cost-effective, readily available worldwide, non-invasive and safe. Combined with other markers, such as patient age, tumor stage and tumor histology, may be effectively used for patients with breast cancer. PMID:26623060

  16. Local 24-h hyperglycemia does not affect endothelium-dependent or -independent vasoreactivity in humans.

    PubMed

    Houben, A J; Schaper, N C; de Haan, C H; Huvers, F C; Slaaf, D W; de Leeuw, P W; Nieuwenhuijzen Kruseman, C

    1996-06-01

    Hyperglycemia induces regional hemodynamic changes, as suggested by animal studies. These hemodynamic changes may play an initiating role in the pathogenesis of diabetic microangiopathy. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of acute local hyperglycemia for 24 h on basal human forearm muscle and skin blood flow and endothelium-dependent and -independent vasoreactivity. Local hyperglycemia (approximately 15 mM) was induced by infusion of 5% glucose into the brachial artery of the nondominant arm. In control experiments, the same individual amount of glucose was infused intravenously in the dominant arm to correct for possible systemic effects of the infused glucose. Vasoreactivity of the forearm vasculature was evaluated by local infusion of acetylcholine (ACh), sodium nitroprusside (SNP), NG-monomethyl-L-arginine (L-NMMA), and norepinephrine (NE) into the brachial artery. Regional hemodynamic measurements were performed at baseline and after 6, 12, and 24 h of local hyperglycemia. Median (with interquartile range) basal forearm (muscle) blood flow (FBF) was not influenced by the 24-h local hyperglycemia [infused-to-contralateral arm FBF ratio for glucose 1.32 (1.16-1.64) vs. control 1.54 (1.34-1.69)]. Skin microcirculatory blood flow (laser Doppler flowmetry, LDF) was not influenced by the 24-h local hyperglycemia [LDF ratio for glucose 1.00 (0.62-1.56) vs control 0.80 (0.58-1.14)]. In addition, the vasoreactivity of both muscle and skin (not shown) vasculature to ACh [percent change in FBF ratio for glucose 167% (81-263) vs. control 148% (94-211)], SNP [for glucose 486% (178-586) vs. control 293% (196-454)], L-NMMA [for glucose -36% (-56 to -22) vs. control -41% (-51 to -24)], and NE [for glucose -48% (-72 to -41) vs. control -66% (-79 to -33)] was also not affected by the local hyperglycemia. Thus, in contrast to animal studies, our results suggest that a moderate-to-severe hyperglycemia does not affect the regulation of basal blood flow or

  17. Curcumin affects cell survival and cell volume regulation in human renal and intestinal cells

    PubMed Central

    Kössler, Sonja; Nofziger, Charity; Jakab, Martin; Dossena, Silvia; Paulmichl, Markus

    2012-01-01

    Curcumin (1,7-bis(4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenyl)-1E,6E-heptadiene-3,5-dione or diferuloyl methane) is a polyphenol derived from the Curcuma longa plant, commonly known as turmeric. This substance has been used extensively in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries for its anti-oxidant, analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic activity. More recently curcumin has been found to possess anti-cancer properties linked to its pro-apoptotic and anti-proliferative actions. The underlying mechanisms of these diverse effects are complex, not fully elucidated and subject of intense scientific debate. Despite increasing evidence indicating that different cation channels can be a molecular target for curcumin, very little is known about the effect of curcumin on chloride channels. Since, (i) the molecular structure of curcumin indicates that the substance could potentially interact with chloride channels, (ii) chloride channels play a role during the apoptotic process and regulation of the cell volume, and (iii) apoptosis is a well known effect of curcumin, we set out to investigate whether or not curcumin could (i) exert a modulatory effect (direct or indirect) on the swelling activated chloride current IClswell in a human cell system, therefore (ii) affect cell volume regulation and (iii) ultimately modulate cell survival. The IClswell channels, which are essential for regulating the cell volume after swelling, are also known to be activated under isotonic conditions as an early event in the apoptotic process. Here we show that long-term exposure of a human kidney cell line to extracellular 0.1–10 μM curcumin modulates IClswell in a dose-dependent manner (0.1 μM curcumin is ineffective, 0.5–5.0 μM curcumin increase, while 10 μM curcumin decrease the current), and short-term exposure to micromolar concentrations of curcumin does not affect IClswell neither if applied from the extracellular nor from the intracellular side – therefore, a direct effect of curcumin on

  18. GAD2 Alternative Transcripts in the Human Prefrontal Cortex, and in Schizophrenia and Affective Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Li, Chao; Gao, Yuan; Gondré-Lewis, Marjorie C.; Lipska, Barbara K.; Shin, Joo Heon; Xie, Bin; Ye, Tianzhang; Weinberger, Daniel R.; Kleinman, Joel E.; Hyde, Thomas M.

    2016-01-01

    Genetic variation and early adverse environmental events work together to increase risk for schizophrenia. γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in adult mammalian brain, plays a major role in normal brain development, and has been strongly implicated in the pathobiology of schizophrenia. GABA synthesis is controlled by two glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) genes, GAD1 and GAD2, both of which produce a number of alternative transcripts. Genetic variants in the GAD1 gene are associated with increased risk for schizophrenia, and reduced expression of its major transcript in the human dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). No consistent changes in GAD2 expression have been found in brains from patients with schizophrenia. In this work, with the use of RNA sequencing and PCR technologies, we confirmed and tracked the expression of an alternative truncated transcript of GAD2 (ENST00000428517) in human control DLPFC homogenates across lifespan besides the well-known full length transcript of GAD2. In addition, using quantitative RT-PCR, expression of GAD2 full length and truncated transcripts were measured in the DLPFC of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression. The expression of GAD2 full length transcript is decreased in the DLPFC of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder patients, while GAD2 truncated transcript is increased in bipolar disorder patients but decreased in schizophrenia patients. Moreover, the patients with schizophrenia with completed suicide or positive nicotine exposure showed significantly higher expression of GAD2 full length transcript. Alternative transcripts of GAD2 may be important in the growth and development of GABA-synthesizing neurons as well as abnormal GABA signaling in the DLPFC of patients with schizophrenia and affective disorders. PMID:26848839

  19. Transcriptional modulator ZBED6 affects cell cycle and growth of human colorectal cancer cells

    PubMed Central

    Akhtar Ali, Muhammad; Younis, Shady; Wallerman, Ola; Gupta, Rajesh; Andersson, Leif; Sjöblom, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    The transcription factor ZBED6 (zinc finger, BED-type containing 6) is a repressor of IGF2 whose action impacts development, cell proliferation, and growth in placental mammals. In human colorectal cancers, IGF2 overexpression is mutually exclusive with somatic mutations in PI3K signaling components, providing genetic evidence for a role in the PI3K pathway. To understand the role of ZBED6 in tumorigenesis, we engineered and validated somatic cell ZBED6 knock-outs in the human colorectal cancer cell lines RKO and HCT116. Ablation of ZBED6 affected the cell cycle and led to increased growth rate in RKO cells but reduced growth in HCT116 cells. This striking difference was reflected in the transcriptome analyses, which revealed enrichment of cell-cycle–related processes among differentially expressed genes in both cell lines, but the direction of change often differed between the cell lines. ChIP sequencing analyses displayed enrichment of ZBED6 binding at genes up-regulated in ZBED6-knockout clones, consistent with the view that ZBED6 modulates gene expression primarily by repressing transcription. Ten differentially expressed genes were identified as putative direct gene targets, and their down-regulation by ZBED6 was validated experimentally. Eight of these genes were linked to the Wnt, Hippo, TGF-β, EGF receptor, or PI3K pathways, all involved in colorectal cancer development. The results of this study show that the effect of ZBED6 on tumor development depends on the genetic background and the transcriptional state of its target genes. PMID:26056301

  20. Bioaerosols from a Food Waste Composting Plant Affect Human Airway Epithelial Cell Remodeling Genes

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Ming-Wei; Lee, Chung-Ru; Hung, Hsueh-Fen; Teng, Kuo-Sheng; Huang, Hsin; Chuang, Chun-Yu

    2013-01-01

    The composting procedure in food waste plants generates airborne bioaerosols that have the potential to damage human airway epithelial cells. Persistent inflammation and repair responses induce airway remodeling and damage to the respiratory system. This study elucidated the expression changes of airway remodeling genes in human lung mucoepidermoid NCI-H292 cells exposed to bioaerosols from a composting plant. Different types of microorganisms were detectable in the composting plant, using the agar culture method. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to quantify the level of Aspergillus fumigatus and the profile of remodeling genes. The real-time PCR results indicated that the amount of A. fumigatus in the composting hall was less than 102 conidia. The endotoxins in the field bioaerosols were determined using a limulus amebocyte lysate test. The endotoxin levels depended on the type of particulate matter (PM), with coarse particles (2.5–10 μm) having higher endotoxin levels than did fine particles (0.5–2.5 μm). After exposure to the conditioned medium of field bioaerosol samples, NCI-H292 cells showed increased pro-inflammatory interleukin (IL)-6 release and activated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 and cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1 (p21WAF1/CIP1) gene expression, but not of matrix metallopeptidase (MMP)-9. Airborne endotoxin levels were higher inside the composting hall than they were in other areas, and they were associated with PM. This suggested that airborne bioaerosols in the composting plant contained endotoxins and microorganisms besides A. fumigatus that cause the inflammatory cytokine secretion and augment the expression of remodeling genes in NCI-H292 cells. It is thus necessary to monitor potentially hazardous materials from bioaerosols in food composting plants, which could affect the health of workers. PMID:24368426

  1. CD82 expression alters with human endometrial cycles and affects the uterine endometrial receptivity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Wei, Xiaowei; Liu, Shuai; Wang, Xiaoqi; Yan, Qiu

    2012-03-01

    Embryo implantation is a process that requires both temporal and spatial synchronization of the uterine endometrium and the embryo, and the endometrium becomes receptive to the embryo during the window of implantation. Although the expression patterns of many implantation-related molecules change dynamically during this process, the impact of CD82 on endometrial receptivity has not been elucidated. By immunohistochemical staining, we found that CD82 levels rose from the proliferative phase to the secretory phase in human endometrium. Specifically, the highest level appeared in mid- and late-secretory phases. Consistently, RL95-2 cells, representative of high-receptive endometrial epithelium, expressed higher levels of CD82 than did HEC-1A cells, which are representative of low-receptive endometrial epithelium, as detected by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, Western blot and immunofluorescence. Furthermore, progesterone up-regulated the expression of CD82 in both epithelial cell lines. Down-regulation of CD82 in RL95-2 cells by either CD82 siRNA transfection or treatment with a CD82 antibody significantly decreased the adhesion of human embryonic JAR cells to RL95-2 cell monolayers (P < 0.01) and inhibited the phosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase (FAK). In contrast, up-regulation of CD82 in HEC-1A cells by CD82 cDNA transfection promoted embryonic JAR cell adhesion to HEC-1A monolayers (P < 0.05) and activated the phosphorylation of FAK. In conclusion, the expression of CD82 increases in endometrial tissues during the window of embryo implantation, CD82 expression affects endometrial receptivity of the uterine epithelial cells in vitro, and the FAK signaling pathway may be involved in this phenomenon. The correlation between CD82 and endometrial receptivity suggests that CD82 may serve as a potential marker of endometrial function. PMID:22393164

  2. Dietary Sodium Restriction Decreases Insulin Secretion Without Affecting Insulin Sensitivity in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Byrne, Loretta M.; Yu, Chang; Wang, Thomas J.; Brown, Nancy J.

    2014-01-01

    Context: Interruption of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system prevents incident diabetes in high-risk individuals, although the mechanism remains unclear. Objective: To test the hypothesis that activation of the endogenous renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system or exogenous aldosterone impairs insulin secretion in humans. Design: We conducted a randomized, blinded crossover study of aldosterone vs vehicle and compared the effects of a low-sodium versus a high-sodium diet. Setting: Academic clinical research center. Participants: Healthy, nondiabetic, normotensive volunteers. Interventions: Infusion of exogenous aldosterone (0.7 μg/kg/h for 12.5 h) or vehicle during low or high sodium intake. Low sodium (20 mmol/d; n = 12) vs high sodium (160 mmol/d; n = 17) intake for 5–7 days. Main Outcome Measures: Change in acute insulin secretory response assessed during hyperglycemic clamps while in sodium balance during a low-sodium vs high-sodium diet during aldosterone vs vehicle. Results: A low-sodium diet increased endogenous aldosterone and plasma renin activity, and acute glucose-stimulated insulin (−16.0 ± 5.6%; P = .007) and C-peptide responses (−21.8 ± 8.4%; P = .014) were decreased, whereas the insulin sensitivity index was unchanged (−1.0 ± 10.7%; P = .98). Aldosterone infusion did not affect the acute insulin response (+1.8 ± 4.8%; P = .72) or insulin sensitivity index (+2.0 ± 8.8%; P = .78). Systolic blood pressure and serum potassium were similar during low and high sodium intake and during aldosterone infusion. Conclusions: Low dietary sodium intake reduces insulin secretion in humans, independent of insulin sensitivity. PMID:25029426

  3. Accumulation of distinct prelamin A variants in human diploid fibroblasts differentially affects cell homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Candelario, Jose; Borrego, Stacey; Reddy, Sita; Comai, Lucio

    2011-02-01

    Lamin A is a component of the nuclear lamina that plays a major role in the structural organization and function of the nucleus. Lamin A is synthesized as a prelamin A precursor which undergoes four sequential post-translational modifications to generate mature lamin A. Significantly, a large number of point mutations in the LMNA gene cause a range of distinct human disorders collectively known as laminopathies. The mechanisms by which mutations in lamin A affect cell function and cause disease are unclear. Interestingly, recent studies have suggested that alterations in the normal lamin A pathway can contribute to cellular dysfunction. Specifically, we and others have shown, at the cellular level, that in the absence of mutations or altered splicing events, increased expression of wild-type prelamin A results in a growth defective phenotype that resembles that of cells expressing the mutant form of lamin A, termed progerin, associated with Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria syndrome (HGPS). Remarkably, the phenotypes of cells expressing elevated levels of wild-type prelamin A can be reversed by either treatment with farnesyltransferase inhibitors or overexpression of ZMPSTE24, a critical prelamin A processing enzyme, suggesting that minor increases in the steady-state levels of one or more prelamin A intermediates is sufficient to induce cellular toxicity. Here, to investigate the molecular basis of the lamin A pathway toxicity, we characterized the phenotypic changes occurring in cells expressing distinct prelamin A variants mimicking specific prelamin A processing intermediates. This analysis demonstrates that distinct prelamin A variants differentially affect cell growth, nuclear membrane morphology, nuclear distribution of lamin A and the fundamental process of transcription. Expression of prelamin A variants that are constitutively farnesylated induced the formation of lamin A aggregates and dramatic changes in nuclear membrane morphology, which led to reduced

  4. Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms of Human STING Can Affect Innate Immune Response to Cyclic Dinucleotides

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Guanghui; Brendel, Volker P.; Shu, Chang; Li, Pingwei; Palanathan, Satheesh; Cheng Kao, C.

    2013-01-01

    The STING (stimulator of interferon genes) protein can bind cyclic dinucleotides to activate the production of type I interferons and inflammatory cytokines. The cyclic dinucleotides can be bacterial second messengers c-di-GMP and c-di-AMP, 3’5’-3’5’ cyclic GMP-AMP (3’3’ cGAMP) produced by Vibrio cholerae and metazoan second messenger 2’5’-3’5’ Cyclic GMP-AMP (2’3’ cGAMP). Analysis of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data from the 1000 Genome Project revealed that R71H-G230A-R293Q (HAQ) occurs in 20.4%, R232H in 13.7%, G230A-R293Q (AQ) in 5.2%, and R293Q in 1.5% of human population. In the absence of exogenous ligands, the R232H, R293Q and AQ SNPs had only modest effect on the stimulation of IFN-β and NF-κB promoter activities in HEK293T cells, while HAQ had significantly lower intrinsic activity. The decrease was primarily due to the R71H substitution. The SNPs also affected the response to the cyclic dinucleotides. In the presence of c-di-GMP, the R232H variant partially decreased the ability to activate IFN-βsignaling, while it was defective for the response to c-di-AMP and 3’3’ cGAMP. The R293Q dramatically decreased the stimulatory response to all bacterial ligands. Surprisingly, the AQ and HAQ variants maintained partial abilities to activate the IFN-β signaling in the presence of ligands due primarily to the G230A substitution. Biochemical analysis revealed that the recombinant G230A protein could affect the conformation of the C-terminal domain of STING and the binding to c-di-GMP. Comparison of G230A structure with that of WT revealed that the conformation of the lid region that clamps onto the c-di-GMP was significantly altered. These results suggest that hSTING variation can affect innate immune signaling and that the common HAQ haplotype expresses a STING protein with reduced intrinsic signaling activity but retained the ability to response to bacterial cyclic dinucleotides. PMID:24204993

  5. Accumulation of distinct prelamin A variants in human diploid fibroblasts differentially affects cell homeostasis

    SciTech Connect

    Candelario, Jose; Borrego, Stacey; Reddy, Sita; Comai, Lucio

    2011-02-01

    Lamin A is a component of the nuclear lamina that plays a major role in the structural organization and function of the nucleus. Lamin A is synthesized as a prelamin A precursor which undergoes four sequential post-translational modifications to generate mature lamin A. Significantly, a large number of point mutations in the LMNA gene cause a range of distinct human disorders collectively known as laminopathies. The mechanisms by which mutations in lamin A affect cell function and cause disease are unclear. Interestingly, recent studies have suggested that alterations in the normal lamin A pathway can contribute to cellular dysfunction. Specifically, we and others have shown, at the cellular level, that in the absence of mutations or altered splicing events, increased expression of wild-type prelamin A results in a growth defective phenotype that resembles that of cells expressing the mutant form of lamin A, termed progerin, associated with Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria syndrome (HGPS). Remarkably, the phenotypes of cells expressing elevated levels of wild-type prelamin A can be reversed by either treatment with farnesyltransferase inhibitors or overexpression of ZMPSTE24, a critical prelamin A processing enzyme, suggesting that minor increases in the steady-state levels of one or more prelamin A intermediates is sufficient to induce cellular toxicity. Here, to investigate the molecular basis of the lamin A pathway toxicity, we characterized the phenotypic changes occurring in cells expressing distinct prelamin A variants mimicking specific prelamin A processing intermediates. This analysis demonstrates that distinct prelamin A variants differentially affect cell growth, nuclear membrane morphology, nuclear distribution of lamin A and the fundamental process of transcription. Expression of prelamin A variants that are constitutively farnesylated induced the formation of lamin A aggregates and dramatic changes in nuclear membrane morphology, which led to reduced

  6. The worldwide costs of marine protected areas.

    PubMed

    Balmford, Andrew; Gravestock, Pippa; Hockley, Neal; McClean, Colin J; Roberts, Callum M

    2004-06-29

    Declines in marine harvests, wildlife, and habitats have prompted calls at both the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development and the 2003 World Parks Congress for the establishment of a global system of marine protected areas (MPAs). MPAs that restrict fishing and other human activities conserve habitats and populations and, by exporting biomass, may sustain or increase yields of nearby fisheries. Here we provide an estimate of the costs of a global MPA network, based on a survey of the running costs of 83 MPAs worldwide. Annual running costs per unit area spanned six orders of magnitude, and were higher in MPAs that were smaller, closer to coasts, and in high-cost, developed countries. Models extrapolating these findings suggest that a global MPA network meeting the World Parks Congress target of conserving 20-30% of the world's seas might cost between 5 billion and 19 billion US dollars annually to run and would probably create around one million jobs. Although substantial, gross network costs are less than current government expenditures on harmful subsidies to industrial fisheries. They also ignore potential private gains from improved fisheries and tourism and are dwarfed by likely social gains from increasing the sustainability of fisheries and securing vital ecosystem services. PMID:15205483

  7. Neuropathology training worldwide-evolution and comparisons.

    PubMed

    Del Bigio, Marc R; Hainfellner, Johannes A; McLean, Catriona A; Powell, Suzanne Z; Sikorska, Beata; Takahashi, Hitoshi; Weis, Joachim; Xuereb, John H

    2014-04-01

    Training of neuropathologists varies worldwide. Systems range from highly organized specialist and subspecialist education with national certification, to regulated training with diploma recognition, to informal apprenticeships in neurological hospitals and no formal recognition. This overview compiles and summarizes the history of regulated training systems, the status of neuropathology within various countries' medical systems and the manner in which neuropathologists are trained. Anecdotal evidence suggests that countries with regulated systems of neuropathology training and an active professional organization are more likely to have an adequate supply of diagnostic specialists and a vibrant research community. The different training systems reflect the style of medical services delivery in the respective countries. In general, the existence of formal neuropathology training systems occurs only in countries with relatively high levels of per capita health expenditures, reflecting the development of medical specialization overall. Evolving diagnostic technologies and major international research endeavors, whose goals are to understand structure and function of the human brain, demand that neuropathology training is more than simply diagnostic histopathology. PMID:24251639

  8. Worldwide trend of atmospheric mercury since 1995

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slemr, F.; Brunke, E.-G.; Ebinghaus, R.; Kuss, J.

    2011-05-01

    Concern about the adverse effects of mercury on human health and ecosystems has led to tightening emission controls since the mid 1980s. But the resulting mercury emissions reductions in many parts of the world are believed to be offset or even surpassed by the increasing emissions in rapidly industrializing countries. Consequently, concentrations of atmospheric mercury are expected to remain roughly constant. Here we show that the worldwide atmospheric mercury concentrations have decreased by about 20 to 38 % since 1996 as indicated by long-term monitoring at stations in the Southern and Northern Hemispheres combined with intermittent measurements of latitudinal distribution over the Atlantic Ocean. The total reduction of the atmospheric mercury burden of this magnitude within 14 years is unusually large among most atmospheric trace gases and is at odds with the current mercury emission inventories with nearly constant anthropogenic emissions over this period. This suggests a major shift in the biogeochemical cycle of mercury including oceans and soil reservoirs. Decreasing reemissions from the legacy of historical mercury emissions are the most likely explanation for this decline since the hypothesis of an accelerated oxidation rate of elemental mercury in the atmosphere is not supported by the observed trends of other trace gases. Acidification of oceans, climate change, excess nutrient input and pollution may also contribute by their impact on the biogeochemistry of ocean and soils. Consequently, models of the atmospheric mercury cycle have to include soil and ocean mercury pools and their dynamics to be able to make projections of future trends.

  9. Innovation in Science Education - World-Wide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baez, Albert V.

    The purpose of this book is to promote improvements in science education, world-wide, but particularly in developing countries. It is addressed to those in positions to make effective contributions to the improvement of science education. The world-wide role of science education, the goals of innovative activities, past experience in efforts to…

  10. Immunosuppressive Drugs Affect High-Mannose/Hybrid N-Glycans on Human Allostimulated Leukocytes

    PubMed Central

    Pocheć, Ewa; Bocian, Katarzyna; Ząbczyńska, Marta; Korczak-Kowalska, Grażyna; Lityńska, Anna

    2015-01-01

    N-glycosylation plays an important role in the majority of physiological and pathological processes occurring in the immune system. Alteration of the type and abundance of glycans is an element of lymphocyte differentiation; it is also common in the development of immune-mediated inflammatory diseases. The N-glycosylation process is very sensitive to different environmental agents, among them the pharmacological environment of immunosuppressive drugs. Some results show that high-mannose oligosaccharides have the ability to suppress different stages of the immune response. We evaluated the effects of cyclosporin A (CsA) and rapamycin (Rapa) on high-mannose/hybrid-type glycosylation in human leukocytes activated in a two-way mixed leukocyte reaction (MLR). CsA significantly reduced the number of leukocytes covered by high-mannose/hybrid N-glycans, and the synergistic action of CsA and Rapa led to an increase of these structures on the remaining leukocytes. This is the first study indicating that β1 and β3 integrins bearing high-mannose/hybrid structures are affected by Rapa and CsA. Rapa taken separately and together with CsA changed the expression of β1 and β3 integrins and, by regulating the protein amount, increased the oligomannose/hybrid-type N-glycosylation on the leukocyte surface. We suggest that the changes in the glycosylation profile of leukocytes may promote the development of tolerance in transplantation. PMID:26339568

  11. Molecular basis of human transcobalamin II deficiency in an affected family

    SciTech Connect

    Li, N.; Seetharam, S.; Seetharam, B.

    1994-09-01

    Transcobalamin II (TC II) deficiency is an autosomal recessive disease leading to cobalamin (Cbl, Vitamin B{sub 12}) deficiency. Patients with this disorder fail to absorb and transport Cbl across cellular membranes and develop Cbl deficiency, symptoms of which include failure to thrive, megaloblastic anemia, impaired immunodefence and neurological disorders. The molecular basis for this disease is not known. By means of Southern blotting and sequence analysis of TC II, cDNA amplified from fibroblasts of an affected child and his parents, we have identified two mutant TC II alleles. The maternally derived allele had a gross deletion, while the paternally derived allele had a 4-nucleotide ({sup 1023}TCTG) deletion which caused a reading frame shift and generation of a premature termination codon, 146 nucleotides downstream from the deletion. Both these deletions caused markedly reduced levels of TC II mRNA and protein. In addition, these two deletions were unique to this family and were not detected in four other unrelated TC II deficient patients who also exhibited the same (TC II protein/mRNA deficiency) phenotypes. Based on this study we suggest, (1) that the molecular defect in the most common form of human TC II deficiency (lack of immunoprecipitable plasma TC II) is heterogeneous and (2) these mutations cause TC II mRNA and protein deficiency leading to defective plasma transport of Cbl and the development of Cbl deficiency.

  12. A dynamic evolution model of human opinion as affected by advertising

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Gui-Xun; Liu, Yun; Zeng, Qing-An; Diao, Su-Meng; Xiong, Fei

    2014-11-01

    We propose a new model to investigate the dynamics of human opinion as affected by advertising, based on the main idea of the CODA model and taking into account two practical factors: one is that the marginal influence of an additional friend will decrease with an increasing number of friends; the other is the decline of memory over time. Simulations show several significant conclusions for both advertising agencies and the general public. A small difference of advertising’s influence on individuals or advertising coverage will result in significantly different advertising effectiveness within a certain interval of value. Compared to the value of advertising’s influence on individuals, the advertising coverage plays a more important role due to the exponential decay of memory. Meanwhile, some of the obtained results are in accordance with people’s daily cognition about advertising. The real key factor in determining the success of advertising is the intensity of exchanging opinions, and people’s external actions always follow their internal opinions. Negative opinions also play an important role.

  13. Experimental Evidence for Anomalous Retroactive Influences on Human Cognition and Affect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bem, Daryl J.

    2011-11-01

    Six experiments are described that take well-established psychological effects on human cognition and affect and "time-reverse" them so that the individual's responses are obtained before the putatively causal stimulus events occur. Two of the experiments tested for the retroactive facilitation of recall: It is well known that rehearsing or practicing a set of verbal materials enhances an individual's ability to recall them on a subsequent test. In our experiments, participants were first shown 48 common words one at a time and were then asked to recall as many of those words as they could. They were then given practice exercises on a randomly selected subset of those words. The results show that participants recalled more of the words they later practiced than the control words they did not practice. Two experiments on retroactive priming provide evidence for retroactive influence on an individual's response times when judging the pleasantness or unpleasantness of visual stimuli. Finally, two experiments provide evidence for the retroactive habituation to emotionally arousing visual stimuli. Each of the six experiments yielded statistically significant results, with a combined z = 3.66, p = .0001, and an effect size (d) of 0.25. The six experiments are a subset of nine retroactive influence experiments reported in Bem [1] that yielded a combined z = 6.66, p = 1.34×10-11, and an effect size of 0.22.

  14. African dust carries microbes across the ocean: are they affecting human and ecosystem health?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kellogg, Christina A.; Griffin, Dale W.

    2003-01-01

    Atmospheric transport of dust from northwest Africa to the western Atlantic Ocean region may be responsible for a number of environmental hazards, including the demise of Caribbean corals; red tides; amphibian diseases; increased occurrence of asthma in humans; and oxygen depletion (eutrophication) in estuaries. Studies of satellite images suggest that hundreds of millions of tons of dust are trans-ported annually at relatively low altitudes across the Atlantic Ocean to the Caribbean Sea and southeastern United States. The dust emanates from the expanding Sahara/Sahel desert region in Africa and carries a wide variety of bacteria and fungi. The U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with the NASA/Goddard Spaceflight Center, is conducting a study to identify microbes--bacteria, fungi, viruses--transported across the Atlantic in African soil dust. Each year, millions of tons of desert dust blow off the west African coast and ride the trade winds across the ocean, affecting the entire Caribbean basin, as well as the southeastern United States. Of the dust reaching the U.S., Florida receives about 50 percent, while the rest may range as far north as Maine or as far west as Colorado. The dust storms can be tracked by satellite and take about one week to cross the Atlantic.

  15. Characterization of human arterial tissue affected by atherosclerosis using multimodal nonlinear optical microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baria, Enrico; Cicchi, Riccardo; Rotellini, Matteo; Nesi, Gabriella; Massi, Daniela; Pavone, Francesco S.

    2016-03-01

    Atherosclerosis is a widespread cardiovascular disease caused by the deposition of lipids (such as cholesterol and triglycerides) on the inner arterial wall. The rupture of an atherosclerotic plaque, resulting in a thrombus, is one of the leading causes of death in the Western World. Preventive assessment of plaque vulnerability is therefore extremely important and can be performed by studying collagen organization and lipid composition in atherosclerotic arterial tissues. Routinely used diagnostic methods, such as histopathological examination, are limited to morphological analysis of the examined tissues, whereas an exhaustive characterization requires immune-histochemical examination and a morpho-functional approach. Instead, a label-free and non-invasive alternative is provided by nonlinear microscopy. In this study, we combined SHG and FLIM microscopy in order to characterize collagen organization and lipids in human carotid ex vivo tissues affected by atherosclerosis. SHG and TPF images, acquired from different regions within atherosclerotic plaques, were processed through image pattern analysis methods (FFT, GLCM). The resulting information on collagen and cholesterol distribution and anisotropy, combined with collagen and lipids fluorescence lifetime measured from FLIM images, allowed characterization of carotid samples and discrimination of different tissue regions. The presented method can be applied for automated classification of atherosclerotic lesions and plaque vulnerability. Moreover, it lays the foundation for a potential in vivo diagnostic tool to be used in clinical setting.

  16. Gut Microbiota Profiling: Metabolomics Based Approach to Unravel Compounds Affecting Human Health.

    PubMed

    Vernocchi, Pamela; Del Chierico, Federica; Putignani, Lorenza

    2016-01-01

    The gut microbiota is composed of a huge number of different bacteria, that produce a large amount of compounds playing a key role in microbe selection and in the construction of a metabolic signaling network. The microbial activities are affected by environmental stimuli leading to the generation of a wide number of compounds, that influence the host metabolome and human health. Indeed, metabolite profiles related to the gut microbiota can offer deep insights on the impact of lifestyle and dietary factors on chronic and acute diseases. Metagenomics, metaproteomics and metabolomics are some of the meta-omics approaches to study the modulation of the gut microbiota. Metabolomic research applied to biofluids allows to: define the metabolic profile; identify and quantify classes and compounds of interest; characterize small molecules produced by intestinal microbes; and define the biochemical pathways of metabolites. Mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy are the principal technologies applied to metabolomics in terms of coverage, sensitivity and quantification. Moreover, the use of biostatistics and mathematical approaches coupled with metabolomics play a key role in the extraction of biologically meaningful information from wide datasets. Metabolomic studies in gut microbiota-related research have increased, focusing on the generation of novel biomarkers, which could lead to the development of mechanistic hypotheses potentially applicable to the development of nutritional and personalized therapies. PMID:27507964

  17. Gut Microbiota Profiling: Metabolomics Based Approach to Unravel Compounds Affecting Human Health

    PubMed Central

    Vernocchi, Pamela; Del Chierico, Federica; Putignani, Lorenza

    2016-01-01

    The gut microbiota is composed of a huge number of different bacteria, that produce a large amount of compounds playing a key role in microbe selection and in the construction of a metabolic signaling network. The microbial activities are affected by environmental stimuli leading to the generation of a wide number of compounds, that influence the host metabolome and human health. Indeed, metabolite profiles related to the gut microbiota can offer deep insights on the impact of lifestyle and dietary factors on chronic and acute diseases. Metagenomics, metaproteomics and metabolomics are some of the meta-omics approaches to study the modulation of the gut microbiota. Metabolomic research applied to biofluids allows to: define the metabolic profile; identify and quantify classes and compounds of interest; characterize small molecules produced by intestinal microbes; and define the biochemical pathways of metabolites. Mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy are the principal technologies applied to metabolomics in terms of coverage, sensitivity and quantification. Moreover, the use of biostatistics and mathematical approaches coupled with metabolomics play a key role in the extraction of biologically meaningful information from wide datasets. Metabolomic studies in gut microbiota-related research have increased, focusing on the generation of novel biomarkers, which could lead to the development of mechanistic hypotheses potentially applicable to the development of nutritional and personalized therapies. PMID:27507964

  18. Coriandrum sativum L. (Coriander) Essential Oil: Antifungal Activity and Mode of Action on Candida spp., and Molecular Targets Affected in Human Whole-Genome Expression

    PubMed Central

    Freires, Irlan de Almeida; Murata, Ramiro Mendonça; Furletti, Vivian Fernandes; Sartoratto, Adilson; de Alencar, Severino Matias; Figueira, Glyn Mara; de Oliveira Rodrigues, Janaina Aparecida; Duarte, Marta Cristina Teixeira; Rosalen, Pedro Luiz

    2014-01-01

    Oral candidiasis is an opportunistic fungal infection of the oral cavity with increasingly worldwide prevalence and incidence rates. Novel specifically-targeted strategies to manage this ailment have been proposed using essential oils (EO) known to have antifungal properties. In this study, we aim to investigate the antifungal activity and mode of action of the EO from Coriandrum sativum L. (coriander) leaves on Candida spp. In addition, we detected the molecular targets affected in whole-genome expression in human cells. The EO phytochemical profile indicates monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes as major components, which are likely to negatively impact the viability of yeast cells. There seems to be a synergistic activity of the EO chemical compounds as their isolation into fractions led to a decreased antimicrobial effect. C. sativum EO may bind to membrane ergosterol, increasing ionic permeability and causing membrane damage leading to cell death, but it does not act on cell wall biosynthesis-related pathways. This mode of action is illustrated by photomicrographs showing disruption in biofilm integrity caused by the EO at varied concentrations. The EO also inhibited Candida biofilm adherence to a polystyrene substrate at low concentrations, and decreased the proteolytic activity of Candida albicans at minimum inhibitory concentration. Finally, the EO and its selected active fraction had low cytotoxicity on human cells, with putative mechanisms affecting gene expression in pathways involving chemokines and MAP-kinase (proliferation/apoptosis), as well as adhesion proteins. These findings highlight the potential antifungal activity of the EO from C. sativum leaves and suggest avenues for future translational toxicological research. PMID:24901768

  19. Coriandrum sativum L. (Coriander) essential oil: antifungal activity and mode of action on Candida spp., and molecular targets affected in human whole-genome expression.

    PubMed

    Freires, Irlan de Almeida; Murata, Ramiro Mendonça; Furletti, Vivian Fernandes; Sartoratto, Adilson; Alencar, Severino Matias de; Figueira, Glyn Mara; de Oliveira Rodrigues, Janaina Aparecida; Duarte, Marta Cristina Teixeira; Rosalen, Pedro Luiz

    2014-01-01

    Oral candidiasis is an opportunistic fungal infection of the oral cavity with increasingly worldwide prevalence and incidence rates. Novel specifically-targeted strategies to manage this ailment have been proposed using essential oils (EO) known to have antifungal properties. In this study, we aim to investigate the antifungal activity and mode of action of the EO from Coriandrum sativum L. (coriander) leaves on Candida spp. In addition, we detected the molecular targets affected in whole-genome expression in human cells. The EO phytochemical profile indicates monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes as major components, which are likely to negatively impact the viability of yeast cells. There seems to be a synergistic activity of the EO chemical compounds as their isolation into fractions led to a decreased antimicrobial effect. C. sativum EO may bind to membrane ergosterol, increasing ionic permeability and causing membrane damage leading to cell death, but it does not act on cell wall biosynthesis-related pathways. This mode of action is illustrated by photomicrographs showing disruption in biofilm integrity caused by the EO at varied concentrations. The EO also inhibited Candida biofilm adherence to a polystyrene substrate at low concentrations, and decreased the proteolytic activity of Candida albicans at minimum inhibitory concentration. Finally, the EO and its selected active fraction had low cytotoxicity on human cells, with putative mechanisms affecting gene expression in pathways involving chemokines and MAP-kinase (proliferation/apoptosis), as well as adhesion proteins. These findings highlight the potential antifungal activity of the EO from C. sativum leaves and suggest avenues for future translational toxicological research. PMID:24901768

  20. Replacement of Val3 in Human Thymidylate Synthase Affects Its Kinetic Properties and Intracellular Stability

    SciTech Connect

    Huang, Xiao; Gibson, Lydia M.; Bell, Brittnaie J.; Lovelace, Leslie L.; Pea, Maria Marjorette O.; Berger, Franklin G.; Berger, Sondra H.; Lebioda, Lukasz

    2010-11-03

    Human and other mammalian thymidylate synthase (TS) enzymes have an N-terminal extension of {approx}27 amino acids that is not present in bacterial TSs. The extension, which is disordered in all reported crystal structures of TSs, has been considered to play a primary role in protein turnover but not in catalytic activity. In mammalian cells, the variant V3A has a half-life similar to that of wild-type human TS (wt hTS) while V3T is much more stable; V3L, V3F, and V3Y have half-lives approximately half of that for wt hTS. Catalytic turnover rates for most Val3 mutants are only slightly diminished, as expected. However, two mutants, V3L and V3F, have strongly compromised dUMP binding, with K{sub m,app} values increased by factors of 47 and 58, respectively. For V3L, this observation can be explained by stabilization of the inactive conformation of the loop of residues 181-197, which prevents substrate binding. In the crystal structure of V3L, electron density corresponding to a leucine residue is present in a position that stabilizes the loop of residues 181-197 in the inactive conformation. Since this density is not observed in other mutants and all other leucine residues are ordered in this structure, it is likely that this density represents Leu3. In the crystal structure of a V3F {center_dot} FdUMP binary complex, the nucleotide is bound in an alternative mode to that proposed for the catalytic complex, indicating that the high K{sub m,app} value is caused not by stabilization of the inactive conformer but by substrate binding in a nonproductive, inhibitory site. These observations show that the N-terminal extension affects the conformational state of the hTS catalytic region. Each of the mechanisms leading to the high K{sub m,app} values can be exploited to facilitate design of compounds acting as allosteric inhibitors of hTS.

  1. Genetic factors affecting gene transcription and catalytic activity of UDP-glucuronosyltransferases in human liver

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Wanqing; Ramírez, Jacqueline; Gamazon, Eric R.; Mirkov, Snezana; Chen, Peixian; Wu, Kehua; Sun, Chang; Cox, Nancy J.; Cook, Edwin; Das, Soma; Ratain, Mark J.

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to discover cis- and trans-acting factors significantly affecting mRNA expression and catalytic activity of human hepatic UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs). Transcription levels of five major hepatic UGT1A (UGT1A1, UGT1A3, UGT1A4, UGT1A6 and UGT1A9) and five UGT2B (UGT2B4, UGT2B7, UGT2B10, UGT2B15 and UGT2B17) genes were quantified in human liver tissue samples (n = 125) using real-time PCR. Glucuronidation activities of 14 substrates were measured in 47 livers. We genotyped 167 tagSNPs (single-nucleotide polymorphisms) in UGT1A (n = 43) and UGT2B (n = 124), as well as the known functional UGT1A1*28 and UGT2B17 CNV (copy number variation) polymorphisms. Transcription levels of 15 transcription factors (TFs) known to regulate these UGTs were quantified. We found that UGT expression and activity were highly variable among the livers (median and range of coefficient of variations: 135%, 74–217% and 52%, 39–105%, respectively). CAR, PXR and ESR1 were found to be the most important trans-regulators of UGT transcription (median and range of correlation coefficients: 46%, 6–58%; 47%, 9–58%; and 52%, 24–75%, respectively). Hepatic UGT activities were mainly determined by UGT gene transcription levels. Twenty-one polymorphisms were significantly (FDR-adjusted P < 0.05) associated with mRNA expression and/or activities of UGT1A1, UGT1A3 and UGT2B17. We found novel SNPs in the UGT2B17 CNV region accounting for variability in UGT2B17 gene transcription and testosterone glucuronidation rate, in addition to that attributable to the UGT2B17 CNV. Our study discovered novel pharmacogenetic markers and provided detailed insight into the genetic network regulating hepatic UGTs. PMID:24879639

  2. Factors affecting antimicrobial activity of MUC7 12-mer, a human salivary mucin-derived peptide

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Guo-Xian; Campagna, Alexander N; Bobek, Libuse A

    2007-01-01

    affect the activity. Conclusion MUC7 12-mer peptide is effective anticandidal agent at physiological concentrations of variety of ions in the oral cavity. These results suggest that, especially in combination with EDTA, it could potentially be applied as an alternative therapeutic agent for the treatment of human oral candidiasis. PMID:17996119

  3. AGE-RELATED FACTORS AFFECTING THE POST-YIELD ENERGY DISSIPATION OF HUMAN CORTICAL BONE

    PubMed Central

    Nyman, Jeffry S.; Roy, Anuradha; Tyler, Jerrod H.; Acuna, Rae L.; Gayle, Heather J.; Wang, Xiaodu

    2007-01-01

    The risk of bone fracture depends in part on the quality of the tissue, not just the size and mass. This study assessed the post-yield energy dissipation of cortical bone in tension as a function of age and composition. Tensile specimens were prepared from tibiae of human cadavers in which male and female donors were divided into two age groups: middle aged (51 to 56 years old, n = 9) and elderly (72 to 90 years old, n = 8). By loading, unloading, and reloading a specimen with rest period inserted in between, tensile properties at incremental strain levels were assessed. In addition, the post-yield toughness was estimated and partitioned as follows: plastic strain energy related to permanent deformation, released elastic strain energy related to stiffness loss, and hysteresis energy related to viscous behavior. Porosity, mineral and collagen content, and collagen crosslinks of each specimen were also measured to determine the micro and ultrastructural properties of the tissue. It was found that age affected all the energy terms plus strength but not elastic stiffness. The post-yield energy terms were correlated with porosity, pentosidine (a marker of non-enzymatic crosslinks), and collagen content, all of which significantly varied with age. General linear models with the highest possible R2 value suggested that the pentosidine concentration and collagen content provided the best explanation of the age-related decrease in the post-yield energy dissipation of bone. Among them, pentosidine concentration had the greatest contribution to plastic strain energy and was the best explanatory variable of damage accumulation. PMID:17266142

  4. E-Cigarette Affects the Metabolome of Primary Normal Human Bronchial Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Aug, Argo; Altraja, Siiri; Kilk, Kalle; Porosk, Rando; Soomets, Ursel; Altraja, Alan

    2015-01-01

    E-cigarettes are widely believed to be safer than conventional cigarettes and have been even suggested as aids for smoking cessation. However, while reasonable with some regards, this judgment is not yet supported by adequate biomedical research data. Since bronchial epithelial cells are the immediate target of inhaled toxicants, we hypothesized that exposure to e-cigarettes may affect the metabolome of human bronchial epithelial cells (HBEC) and that the changes are, at least in part, induced by oxidant-driven mechanisms. Therefore, we evaluated the effect of e-cigarette liquid (ECL) on the metabolome of HBEC and examined the potency of antioxidants to protect the cells. We assessed the changes of the intracellular metabolome upon treatment with ECL in comparison of the effect of cigarette smoke condensate (CSC) with mass spectrometry and principal component analysis on air-liquid interface model of normal HBEC. Thereafter, we evaluated the capability of the novel antioxidant tetrapeptide O-methyl-l-tyrosinyl-γ-l-glutamyl-l-cysteinylglycine (UPF1) to attenuate the effect of ECL. ECL caused a significant shift in the metabolome that gradually gained its maximum by the 5th hour and receded by the 7th hour. A second alteration followed at the 13th hour. Treatment with CSC caused a significant initial shift already by the 1st hour. ECL, but not CSC, significantly increased the concentrations of arginine, histidine, and xanthine. ECL, in parallel with CSC, increased the content of adenosine diphosphate and decreased that of three lipid species from the phosphatidylcholine family. UPF1 partially counteracted the ECL-induced deviations, UPF1’s maximum effect occurred at the 5th hour. The data support our hypothesis that ECL profoundly alters the metabolome of HBEC in a manner, which is comparable and partially overlapping with the effect of CSC. Hence, our results do not support the concept of harmlessness of e-cigarettes. PMID:26536230

  5. Donor Age of Human Platelet Lysate Affects Proliferation and Differentiation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Lohmann, Michael; Walenda, Gudrun; Hemeda, Hatim; Joussen, Sylvia; Drescher, Wolf; Jockenhoevel, Stefan; Hutschenreuter, Gabriele; Zenke, Martin; Wagner, Wolfgang

    2012-01-01

    The regenerative potential declines upon aging. This might be due to cell-intrinsic changes in stem and progenitor cells or to influences by the microenvironment. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) raise high hopes in regenerative medicine. They are usually culture expanded in media with fetal calf serum (FCS) or other serum supplements such as human platelet lysate (HPL). In this study, we have analyzed the impact of HPL-donor age on culture expansion. 31 single donor derived HPLs (25 to 57 years old) were simultaneously compared for culture of MSC. Proliferation of MSC did not reveal a clear association with platelet counts of HPL donors or growth factors concentrations (PDGF-AB, TGF-β1, bFGF, or IGF-1), but it was significantly higher with HPLs from younger donors (<35 years) as compared to older donors (>45 years). Furthermore, HPLs from older donors increased activity of senescence-associated beta-galactosidase (SA-βgal). HPL-donor age did not affect the fibroblastoid colony-forming unit (CFU-f) frequency, immunophenotype or induction of adipogenic differentiation, whereas osteogenic differentiation was significantly lower with HPLs from older donors. Concentrations of various growth factors (PDGF-AB, TGF-β1, bFGF, IGF-1) or hormones (estradiol, parathormone, leptin, 1,25 vitamin D3) were not associated with HPL-donor age or MSC growth. Taken together, our data support the notion that aging is associated with systemic feedback mechanisms acting on stem and progenitor cells, and this is also relevant for serum supplements in cell culture: HPLs derived from younger donors facilitate enhanced expansion and more pronounced osteogenic differentiation. PMID:22662236

  6. Trends Affecting Ohio State University Extension in the 21st Century and the Implications for Human Capital

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cochran, Graham R.; Ferrari, Theresa M.; Chen, Claire Yueh-Ti

    2012-01-01

    Research with a diverse array of organizations in the public and private sectors has documented a common set of trends affecting organizations and their human capital in the 21st century. Similar trends have been identified as important for Extension organizations and the Cooperative Extension System. It is important to determine if such trends…

  7. High pressure treatment of human norovirus virus-like particles: factors affecting destruction efficacy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Human norovirus (NoV) accounts for more than 90% of nonbacterial gastroenteritis. To date, the efficacy of human NoV inactivation interventions cannot be accurately evaluated because the virus is nonculturable. In this study, we aimed to estimate inactivation of human NoV by high pressure processing...

  8. Genome scan identifies a locus affecting gamma-globin expression in human beta-cluster YAC transgenic mice

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, S.D.; Cooper, P.; Fung, J.; Weier, H.U.G.; Rubin, E.M.

    2000-03-01

    Genetic factors affecting post-natal g-globin expression - a major modifier of the severity of both b-thalassemia and sickle cell anemia, have been difficult to study. This is especially so in mice, an organism lacking a globin gene with an expression pattern equivalent to that of human g-globin. To model the human b-cluster in mice, with the goal of screening for loci affecting human g-globin expression in vivo, we introduced a human b-globin cluster YAC transgene into the genome of FVB mice . The b-cluster contained a Greek hereditary persistence of fetal hemoglobin (HPFH) g allele resulting in postnatal expression of human g-globin in transgenic mice. The level of human g-globin for various F1 hybrids derived from crosses between the FVB transgenics and other inbred mouse strains was assessed. The g-globin level of the C3HeB/FVB transgenic mice was noted to be significantly elevated. To map genes affecting postnatal g-globin expression, a 20 centiMorgan (cM) genome scan of a C3HeB/F VB transgenics [prime] FVB backcross was performed, followed by high-resolution marker analysis of promising loci. From this analysis we mapped a locus within a 2.2 cM interval of mouse chromosome 1 at a LOD score of 4.2 that contributes 10.4% of variation in g-globin expression level. Combining transgenic modeling of the human b-globin gene cluster with quantitative trait analysis, we have identified and mapped a murine locus that impacts on human g-globin expression in vivo.

  9. Connecting art and science: An interdisciplinary strategy and its impact on the affective domain of community college human anatomy students

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petti, Kevin

    Educational objectives are often described within the framework of a three-domain taxonomy: cognitive, affective and psychomotor. While most of the research on educational objectives has focused on the cognitive domain, the research that has been conducted on the affective domain, which speaks to emotions, attitudes, and values, has identified a number of positive outcomes. One approach to enhancing the affective domain is that of interdisciplinary education. Science education research in the realm of interdisciplinary education and affective outcomes is limited; especially research conducted on community college students of human anatomy. This project investigated the relationship between an interdisciplinary teaching strategy and the affective domain in science education by utilizing an interdisciplinary lecture in a human anatomy class. Subjects were anatomy students in a California community college who listened to a one-hour lecture describing the cultural, historical and scientific significance of selected pieces of art depicting human dissection in European medieval and Renaissance universities. The focus was on how these renderings represent the state of anatomy education during their respective eras. After listening to the lecture, subjects were administered a 35-question survey that was composed of 14 demographic questions and 21 Likert-style statements that asked respondents to rate the extent to which the intervention influenced their affective domain. Descriptive statistics were then used to determine which component of the affective domain was most influenced, and multiple regression analysis was used to examine the extent to which individual differences along the affective continuum were explained by select demographic measures such as gender, race/ethnicity, education level, and previous exposure to science courses. Results indicate that the interdisciplinary intervention had a positive impact on every component of the affective domain hierarchy

  10. Safe Thinking and Affect Regulation (STAR): Human Immunodeficiency Virus Prevention in Alternative/Therapeutic Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Larry K.; Nugent, Nicole R.; Houck, Christopher D.; Lescano, Celia M.; Whiteley, Laura B.; Barker, David; Viau, Lisa; Zlotnick, Caron

    2011-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness of Safe Thinking and Affect Regulation (STAR), a 14-session HIV-prevention program for adolescents at alternative/therapeutic schools. Because these youth frequently have difficulties with emotions and cognitions, it was designed to improve sexuality-specific affect management and cognitive monitoring, as…

  11. Foreshock occurrence rates before large earthquakes worldwide

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reasenberg, P.A.

    1999-01-01

    Global rates of foreshock occurrence involving shallow M ??? 6 and M ??? 7 mainshocks and M ??? 5 foreshocks were measured, using earthquakes listed in the Harvard CMT catalog for the period 1978-1996. These rates are similar to rates ones measured in previous worldwide and regional studies when they are normalized for the ranges of magnitude difference they each span. The observed worldwide rates were compared to a generic model of earthquake clustering, which is based on patterns of small and moderate aftershocks in California, and were found to exceed the California model by a factor of approximately 2. Significant differences in foreshock rate were found among subsets of earthquakes defined by their focal mechanism and tectonic region, with the rate before thrust events higher and the rate before strike-slip events lower than the worldwide average. Among the thrust events a large majority, composed of events located in shallow subduction zones, registered a high foreshock rate, while a minority, located in continental thrust belts, measured a low rate. These differences may explain why previous surveys have revealed low foreshock rates among thrust events in California (especially southern California), while the worldwide observations suggest the opposite: California, lacking an active subduction zone in most of its territory, and including a region of mountain-building thrusts in the south, reflects the low rate apparently typical for continental thrusts, while the worldwide observations, dominated by shallow subduction zone events, are foreshock-rich.

  12. Human factors with nonhumans - Factors that affect computer-task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Washburn, David A.

    1992-01-01

    There are two general strategies that may be employed for 'doing human factors research with nonhuman animals'. First, one may use the methods of traditional human factors investigations to examine the nonhuman animal-to-machine interface. Alternatively, one might use performance by nonhuman animals as a surrogate for or model of performance by a human operator. Each of these approaches is illustrated with data in the present review. Chronic ambient noise was found to have a significant but inconsequential effect on computer-task performance by rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). Additional data supported the generality of findings such as these to humans, showing that rhesus monkeys are appropriate models of human psychomotor performance. It is argued that ultimately the interface between comparative psychology and technology will depend on the coordinated use of both strategies of investigation.

  13. Cross-species affective functions of the medial forebrain bundle-implications for the treatment of affective pain and depression in humans.

    PubMed

    Coenen, Volker A; Schlaepfer, Thomas E; Maedler, Burkhard; Panksepp, Jaak

    2011-10-01

    Major depression (MD) might be conceptualized as pathological under-arousal of positive affective systems as parts of a network of brain regions assessing, reconciling and storing emotional stimuli versus an over-arousal of parts of the same network promoting separation-distress/GRIEF. In this context depression can be explained as an emotional pain state that is the result of a disregulation of several sub-systems that under physiological conditions are concerned with bodily or emotional homeostasis of the human organism in a social context. Physiologically, homeostasis is maintained by influences of the SEEKING system represented - amongst others - by the medial forebrain bundle (MFB). Neuroimaging studies show that the MFB has a proven access to the GRIEF/Sadness system. A functional decoupling of these systems with a dysfunctional GRIEF pathway might result in MD. Therewith GRIEF and SEEKING/PLEASURE systems play important roles as opponents in maintenance of emotional homeostasis. Chronic electrical modulation of the reward SEEKING pathways with deep brain stimulation might show anti-depressive effects in humans suffering from MD by re-initiating an emotional equilibrium (of higher or lower activity) between these opposing systems. PMID:21184778

  14. 1991 worldwide refining and gas processing directory

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-01-01

    This book ia an authority for immediate information on the industry. You can use it to find new business, analyze market trends, and to stay in touch with existing contacts while making new ones. The possibilities for business applications are numerous. Arranged by country, all listings in the directory include address, phone, fax and telex numbers, a description of the company's activities, names of key personnel and their titles, corporate headquarters, branch offices and plant sites. This newly revised edition lists more than 2000 companies and nearly 3000 branch offices and plant locations. This east-to-use reference also includes several of the most vital and informative surveys of the industry, including the U.S. Refining Survey, the Worldwide Construction Survey in Refining, Sulfur, Gas Processing and Related Fuels, the Worldwide Refining and Gas Processing Survey, the Worldwide Catalyst Report, and the U.S. and Canadian Lube and Wax Capacities Report from the National Petroleum Refiner's Association.

  15. A functional MiR-124 binding-site polymorphism in IQGAP1 affects human cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lixin; Zhang, Rui; Li, Ming; Wu, Xujun; Wang, Jianhong; Huang, Lin; Shi, Xiaodong; Li, Qingwei; Su, Bing

    2014-01-01

    As a product of the unique evolution of the human brain, human cognitive performance is largely a collection of heritable traits. Rather surprisingly, to date there have been no reported cases to highlight genes that underwent adaptive evolution in humans and which carry polymorphisms that have a marked effect on cognitive performance. IQ motif containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1), a scaffold protein, affects learning and memory in a dose-dependent manner. Its expression is regulated by miR-124 through the binding sites in the 3'UTR, where a SNP (rs1042538) exists in the core-binding motif. Here we showed that this SNP can influence the miR-target interaction both in vitro and in vivo. Individuals carrying the derived T alleles have higher IQGAP1 expression in the brain as compared to the ancestral A allele carriers. We observed a significant and male-specific association between rs1042538 and tactile performances in two independent cohorts. Males with the derived allele displayed higher tactual performances as compared to those with the ancestral allele. Furthermore, we found a highly diverged allele-frequency distribution of rs1042538 among world human populations, likely caused by natural selection and/or recent population expansion. These results suggest that current human populations still carry sequence variations that affect cognitive performances and that these genetic variants may likely have been subject to comparatively recent natural selection. PMID:25222038

  16. How does enhancing cognition affect human values? How does this translate into social responsibility?

    PubMed

    Cabrera, Laura Y

    2015-01-01

    The past decade has seen a rise in the use of different technologies aimed at enhancing cognition of normal healthy individuals. While values have been acknowledged to be an important aspect of cognitive enhancement practices, the discussion has predominantly focused on just a few values, such as safety, peer pressure, and authenticity. How are values, in a broader sense, affected by enhancing cognitive abilities? Is this dependent on the type of technology or intervention used to attain the enhancement, or does the cognitive domain targeted play a bigger role in how values are affected? Values are not only likely to be affected by cognitive enhancement practices; they also play a crucial role in defining the type of interventions that are likely to be undertaken. This paper explores the way values affect and are affected by enhancing cognitive abilities. Furthermore, it argues that knowledge of the interplay between values and cognitive enhancement makes a strong case for social responsibility around cognitive enhancement practices. PMID:25048389

  17. Equipment and services for worldwide applications

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1985-01-01

    The report presents a digest of geothermal energy technology. The worldwide distribution of geothermal resources is described, and the degree to which various countries are exploiting their resources estimated. Detailed information about US technologies is presented, from exploration through applications to cost factors. (ACR)

  18. Origins of food crops connect countries worldwide.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crop genetic diversity is concentrated within specific geographic regions worldwide. While access to this diversity is critical to continued increases in agricultural productivity, the geopolitical significance of the geography of crop diversity has not been quantified. We assess the degree to which...

  19. World-Wide Web: The Information Universe.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berners-Lee, Tim; And Others

    1992-01-01

    Describes the World-Wide Web (W3) project, which is designed to create a global information universe using techniques of hypertext, information retrieval, and wide area networking. Discussion covers the W3 data model, W3 architecture, the document naming scheme, protocols, document formats, comparison with other systems, experience with the W3…

  20. Blackberry production systems – A worldwide perspective

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Three types of blackberry are grown worldwide: the erect, semi-erect, and trailing. All types can be grown for fresh and processed markets although the trailing types with their small seeds size and aromatic flavors are considered superior for processed markets. The largest production regions are Me...

  1. World-wide distribution automation systems

    SciTech Connect

    Devaney, T.M.

    1994-12-31

    A worldwide power distribution automation system is outlined. Distribution automation is defined and the status of utility automation is discussed. Other topics discussed include a distribution management system, substation feeder, and customer functions, potential benefits, automation costs, planning and engineering considerations, automation trends, databases, system operation, computer modeling of system, and distribution management systems.

  2. 1979 Worldwide Adventure TravelGuide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1979

    Guidebook descriptions of the 3000 worldwide adventure trips open to public participation include highlights, itinerary, level of experience necessary, requirements, location, duration, dates, cost, and addresses and telephone numbers of the operating organizations. The guidebook is organized in four major sections and, within each section, into…

  3. WorldWide Web: Hypertext from CERN.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nickerson, Gord

    1992-01-01

    Discussion of software tools for accessing information on the Internet focuses on the WorldWideWeb (WWW) system, which was developed at the European Particle Physics Laboratory (CERN) in Switzerland to build a worldwide network of hypertext links using available networking technology. Its potential for use with multimedia documents is also…

  4. Human erythrocytes are affected in vitro by flavonoids of Aristotelia chilensis (Maqui) leaves.

    PubMed

    Suwalsky, Mario; Vargas, Pedro; Avello, Marcia; Villena, Fernando; Sotomayor, Carlos P

    2008-11-01

    Aristotelia chilensis (Mol.) Stuntz (A. chilensis), also known as maqui, is a plant of the Elaeocarpaceae family that grows in central and southern Chile as well as southwestern Argentina. Infusions of its leaves have long been used in the traditional native herbal medicine to treat different ailments. Phytochemical studies of the plant's chemical composition of the plant indicate the presence of indolic alkaloids, flavonoids, cianidine glucosides, delfidine, malvidine, petunidine, cumarines and triterpenes. These compounds, particularly the flavonoids, have antioxidant properties. In order to evaluate the mechanisms of its toxicity and their antioxidant properties, the leaves' aqueous extracts were induced to interact with human red cells, their isolated unsealed membranes (IUM), and molecular models of the human erythrocyte membrane. These consisted of multibilayers of dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine (DMPC) and dimyristoylphosphatidylethanolamine (DMPE), representative of phospholipids classes located in the outer and inner monolayers of the human erythrocyte membrane, and large unilamellar vesicles (LUV) of DMPC. The capacity of A. chilensis aqueous extracts to perturb the bilayer structure of DMPC and DMPE was evaluated by X-ray diffraction, DMPC LUV and IUM were studied by fluorescence spectroscopy, and intact human erythrocytes were observed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Results of the present study indicate that aqueous extracts of A. chilensis induced an alteration of human erythrocyte morphology from the normal discoid shape to an echinocytic form, changes that are explained in terms of the extract interaction with the membrane's outer phospholipid monolayer. PMID:18687390

  5. Human Impacts Affect Tree Community Features of 20 Forest Fragments of a Vanishing Neotropical Hotspot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, José Aldo Alves; de Oliveira-Filho, Ary Teixeira; Eisenlohr, Pedro V.; Miranda, Pedro L. S.; de Lemos Filho, José Pires

    2015-02-01

    The loss in forest area due to human occupancy is not the only threat to the remaining biodiversity: forest fragments are susceptible to additional human impact. Our aim was to investigate the effect of human impact on tree community features (species composition and abundance, and structural descriptors) and check if there was a decrease in the number of slender trees, an increase in the amount of large trees, and also a reduction in the number of tree species that occur in 20 fragments of Atlantic montane semideciduous forest in southeastern Brazil. We produced digital maps of each forest fragment using Landsat 7 satellite images and processed the maps to obtain morphometric variables. We used investigative questionnaires and field observations to survey the history of human impact. We then converted the information into scores given to the extent, severity, and duration of each impact, including proportional border area, fire, trails, coppicing, logging, and cattle, and converted these scores into categorical levels. We used linear models to assess the effect of impacts on tree species abundance distribution and stand structural descriptors. Part of the variation in floristic patterns was significantly correlated to the impacts of fire, logging, and proportional border area. Structural descriptors were influenced by cattle and outer roads. Our results provided, for the first time, strong evidence that tree species occurrence and abundance, and forest structure of Atlantic seasonal forest fragments respond differently to various modes of disturbance by humans.

  6. Human impacts affect tree community features of 20 forest fragments of a vanishing neotropical hotspot.

    PubMed

    Pereira, José Aldo Alves; de Oliveira-Filho, Ary Teixeira; Eisenlohr, Pedro V; Miranda, Pedro L S; de Lemos Filho, José Pires

    2015-02-01

    The loss in forest area due to human occupancy is not the only threat to the remaining biodiversity: forest fragments are susceptible to additional human impact. Our aim was to investigate the effect of human impact on tree community features (species composition and abundance, and structural descriptors) and check if there was a decrease in the number of slender trees, an increase in the amount of large trees, and also a reduction in the number of tree species that occur in 20 fragments of Atlantic montane semideciduous forest in southeastern Brazil. We produced digital maps of each forest fragment using Landsat 7 satellite images and processed the maps to obtain morphometric variables. We used investigative questionnaires and field observations to survey the history of human impact. We then converted the information into scores given to the extent, severity, and duration of each impact, including proportional border area, fire, trails, coppicing, logging, and cattle, and converted these scores into categorical levels. We used linear models to assess the effect of impacts on tree species abundance distribution and stand structural descriptors. Part of the variation in floristic patterns was significantly correlated to the impacts of fire, logging, and proportional border area. Structural descriptors were influenced by cattle and outer roads. Our results provided, for the first time, strong evidence that tree species occurrence and abundance, and forest structure of Atlantic seasonal forest fragments respond differently to various modes of disturbance by humans. PMID:25344658

  7. Arylamine N-Acetyltransferase 2 (NAT2) Genetic Diversity and Traditional Subsistence: A Worldwide Population Survey

    PubMed Central

    Sabbagh, Audrey; Darlu, Pierre; Crouau-Roy, Brigitte; Poloni, Estella S.

    2011-01-01

    Arylamine N-acetyltransferase 2 (NAT2) is involved in human physiological responses to a variety of xenobiotic compounds, including common therapeutic drugs and exogenous chemicals present in the diet and the environment. Many questions remain about the evolutionary mechanisms that have led to the high prevalence of slow acetylators in the human species. Evidence from recent surveys of NAT2 gene variation suggests that NAT2 slow-causing variants might have become targets of positive selection as a consequence of the shift in modes of subsistence and lifestyle in human populations in the last 10,000 years. We aimed to test more extensively the hypothesis that slow acetylation prevalence in humans is related to the subsistence strategy adopted by the past populations. To this end, published frequency data on the most relevant genetic variants of NAT2 were collected from 128 population samples (14,679 individuals) representing different subsistence modes and dietary habits, allowing a thorough analysis at both a worldwide and continent scale. A significantly higher prevalence of the slow acetylation phenotype was observed in populations practicing farming (45.4%) and herding (48.2%) as compared to populations mostly relying on hunting and gathering (22.4%) (P = 0.0007). This was closely mirrored by the frequency of the slow 590A variant that was found to occur at a three-fold higher frequency in food producers (25%) as compared to hunter-gatherers (8%). These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that the Neolithic transition to subsistence economies based on agricultural and pastoral resources modified the selective regime affecting the NAT2 acetylation pathway. Furthermore, the vast amount of data collected enabled us to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date description of NAT2 worldwide genetic diversity, thus building up a useful resource of frequency data for further studies interested in epidemiological or anthropological research questions involving

  8. Foods and food constituents that affect the brain and human behavior

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lieberman, Harris R.; Wurtman, Richard J.

    1986-01-01

    Until recently, it was generally believed that brain function was usually independent of day-to-day metabolic changes associated with consumption of food. Although it was acknowledged that peripheral metabolic changes associated with hunger or satiety might affect brain function, other effects of foods on the brain were considered unlikely. However, in 1971, Fernstrom and Wurtman discovered that under certain conditions, the protein-to-carbohydrate ratio of a meal could affect the concentration of a particular brain neurotransmitter. That neurotransmitter, serotonin, participates in the regulation of a variety of central nervous system (CNS) functions including sleep, pain sensitivity, aggression, and patterns of nutrient selection. The activity of other neurotransmitter systems has also been shown to be, under certain conditions, affected by dietary constituents which are given either as ordinary foods or in purified form. For example, the CNS turnover of two catecholamine neurotransmitters, dopamine and norepinephrine, can be altered by ingestion of their amino acid precursor, tyrosine, when neurons that release these monoamines are firing frequently. Similarly, lecithin, a dietary source of choline, and choline itself have been shown to increase the synthesis of acetylcholine when cholinergic neurons are very active. It is possible that other neurotransmitters could also be affected by precursor availability or other, as yet undiscovered peripheral factors governed by food consumption. The effects of food on neurotransmitters and behavior are discussed.

  9. A single-nucleotide variation in a p53-binding site affects nutrient-sensitive human SIRT1 expression

    PubMed Central

    Naqvi, Asma; Hoffman, Timothy A.; DeRicco, Jeremy; Kumar, Ajay; Kim, Cuk-Seong; Jung, Saet-Byel; Yamamori, Tohru; Kim, Young-Rae; Mehdi, Fardeen; Kumar, Santosh; Rankinen, Tuomo; Ravussin, Eric; Irani, Kaikobad

    2010-01-01

    The SIRTUIN1 (SIRT1) deacetylase responds to changes in nutrient availability and regulates mammalian physiology and metabolism. Human and mouse SIRT1 are transcriptionally repressed by p53 via p53 response elements in their proximal promoters. Here, we identify a novel p53-binding sequence in the distal human SIRT1 promoter that is required for nutrient-sensitive SIRT1 transcription. In addition, we show that a common single-nucleotide (C/T) variation in this sequence affects nutrient deprivation-induced SIRT1 transcription, and calorie restriction-induced SIRT1 expression. The p53-binding sequence lies in a region of the SIRT1 promoter that also binds the transcriptional repressor Hypermethylated-In-Cancer-1 (HIC1). Nutrient deprivation increases occupancy by p53, while decreasing occupancy by HIC1, of this region of the promoter. HIC1 and p53 compete with each other for promoter occupancy. In comparison with the T variation, the C variation disrupts the mirror image symmetry of the p53-binding sequence, resulting in decreased binding to p53, decreased nutrient sensitivity of the promoter and impaired calorie restriction-stimulated tissue expression of SIRT1 and SIRT1 target genes AMPKα2 and PGC-1β. Thus, a common SNP in a novel p53-binding sequence in the human SIRT1 promoter affects nutrient-sensitive SIRT1 expression, and could have a significant impact on calorie restriction-induced, SIRT1-mediated, changes in human metabolism and physiology. PMID:20693263

  10. Did warfare among ancestral hunter-gatherers affect the evolution of human social behaviors?

    PubMed

    Bowles, Samuel

    2009-06-01

    Since Darwin, intergroup hostilities have figured prominently in explanations of the evolution of human social behavior. Yet whether ancestral humans were largely "peaceful" or "warlike" remains controversial. I ask a more precise question: If more cooperative groups were more likely to prevail in conflicts with other groups, was the level of intergroup violence sufficient to influence the evolution of human social behavior? Using a model of the evolutionary impact of between-group competition and a new data set that combines archaeological evidence on causes of death during the Late Pleistocene and early Holocene with ethnographic and historical reports on hunter-gatherer populations, I find that the estimated level of mortality in intergroup conflicts would have had substantial effects, allowing the proliferation of group-beneficial behaviors that were quite costly to the individual altruist. PMID:19498163

  11. Human erythrocytes and neuroblastoma cells are affected in vitro by Au(III) ions

    SciTech Connect

    Suwalsky, Mario; Gonzalez, Raquel; Villena, Fernando; Aguilar, Luis F.; Sotomayor, Carlos P.; Bolognin, Silvia; Zatta, Paolo

    2010-06-25

    Gold compounds are well known for their neurological and nephrotoxic implications. However, haematological toxicity is one of the most serious toxic and less studied effects. The lack of information on these aspects of Au(III) prompted us to study the structural effects induced on cell membranes, particularly that of human erythrocytes. AuCl{sub 3} was incubated with intact erythrocytes, isolated unsealed human erythrocyte membranes (IUM) and molecular models of the erythrocyte membrane. The latter consisted of multibilayers of dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine and dimyristoylphosphatidylethanolamine, phospholipids classes located in the outer and inner monolayers of the human erythrocyte membrane, respectively. This report presents evidence that Au(III) interacts with red cell membranes as follows: (a) in scanning electron microscopy studies on human erythrocytes it was observed that Au(III) induced shape changes at a concentration as low as 0.01 {mu}M; (b) in isolated unsealed human erythrocyte membranes Au(III) induced a decrease in the molecular dynamics and/or water content at the glycerol backbone level of the lipid bilayer polar groups in a 5-50 {mu}M concentration range, and (c) X-ray diffraction studies showed that Au(III) in the 10 {mu}m-1 mM range induced increasing structural perturbation only to dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine bilayers. Additional experiments were performed in human neuroblastoma cells SH-SY5Y. A statistically significant decrease of cell viability was observed with Au(III) ranging from 0.1 {mu}M to 100 {mu}M.

  12. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea091 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Schaft, Julia; McKernan, Robert; Hu, Jesselyn; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea091 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Htt gene CAG expansion of 40 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 92% of cells expressed Nanog, 97% Oct4, 79% Tra1-60 and 98% SSEA4 and gave a Pluritest pluripotency score of 38.36, Novelty of 1.35. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346013

  13. Derivation of DM1 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea067.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Main, Heather; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea067 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying expansion of CTG repeats in the DMPK gene, indicative of Myotonic Dystrophy Type 1 (DM1). Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XY and STR analysis demonstrated a male Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 85% of cells expressed Nanog, 97% Oct4, 73% Tra1-60 and 98% SSEA4 and gave a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 25.75, Novelty of 1.46. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346009

  14. Derivation of DM2 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea066.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Schaft, Julia; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea066 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying expansion of CCTG repeats in exon 1 of the ZNF9 gene, indicative of Myotonic Dystrophy Type 2 (DM2). Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XY and STR analysis demonstrated a male Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 88% of cells expressed Nanog, 97% Oct4, 80% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4 and gave a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 31.3, Novelty of 1.22. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346023

  15. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea046 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Chami, Omar; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea046 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying HTT gene CAG expansion of 45 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 85% of cells expressed Nanog, 92% Oct4, 75% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4 and demonstrated Alkaline Phosphatase activity. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346012

  16. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea089 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; McKernan, Robert; Hu, Jesselyn; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea089 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Htt gene CAG expansion of 41 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 91% of cells expressed Nanog, 95% Oct4, 90% Tra1-60 and 100% SSEA4 and gave a PluriTest Pluripotency score of 39.28, Novelty of 1.2. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346008

  17. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea090 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Schaft, Julia; McKernan, Robert; Hu, Jesselyn; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea090 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Htt gene CAG expansion of 45 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 91% of cells expressed Nanog, 95% Oct4, 90% Tra1-60 and 100% SSEA4 and gave a pluritest pluripotency score of 30.91, novelty of 1.23. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346026

  18. Derivation of Huntington disease affected Genea020 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Peura, Teija; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea020 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Htt gene CAG expansion of 48 repeats, indicative of Huntington disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 89% of cells expressed Nanog, 95% Oct4, 29% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4, gave a Pluritest pluripotency score of 27.51, novelty of 1.43 and demonstrated alkaline phosphatase activity. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346007

  19. How Do ICT Uses and New Human Resources Practices Affect SMEs' Efficiency?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castillo-Merino, David; Serradell-Lopez, Enric; González-González, Inés

    In this paper we have analyzed both the main traits of efficient firms and the main sources of firms' efficiency, through a representative sample of 2.029 small and medium size Catalan firms. Our results demonstrate the importance for entrepreneurs of realizing that firms' efficiency shows a significant improvement when advanced ICT uses are combined with human resources practices focused on the promotion of workers autonomy, flexibility and decentralization of firm's decision making process, and with the adoption of employees assessment systems based on human values.

  20. Derivation of Trisomy 21 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea053.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea053 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Trisomy 21, indicative of Down Syndrome. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a 47, XY, +21 karyotype and male allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology and expressed pluripotent cell markers including 83% Nanog positive, 87% Oct4, 88% Tra1-60 and 98% SSEA4. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346024

  1. Derivation of Trisomy 21 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea021.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Bosman, Alexis; McKernan, Robert; Main, Heather; Schmidt, Uli; Peura, Teija

    2016-03-01

    The Genea021 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Trisomy 21, indicative of Down Syndrome. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, CGH and STR analyses demonstrated a 47, XY, +21 karyotype and male allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 71% of cells expressed Nanog, 84% Oct4, 23% Tra1-60 and 95% SSEA4, gave a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 21.85, Novelty of 1.42, demonstrated Alkaline Phosphatase activity and tri-lineage teratoma formation. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346003

  2. Gene therapy clinical trials worldwide 1989-2004-an overview.

    PubMed

    Edelstein, Michael L; Abedi, Mohammad R; Wixon, Jo; Edelstein, Richard M

    2004-06-01

    In 1989, Rosenberg et al. performed the first human gene therapy trial when they used a retrovirus to introduce the gene coding for resistance to neomycin into human tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes before infusing them into five patients with advanced melanoma. This study demonstrated the feasibility of using retroviral gene transduction in humans and set the stage for further studies. Since then, over 900 clinical trials have been completed, are ongoing or have been approved worldwide. These trials have been designed to establish feasibility and safety, to demonstrate the reality of expression of therapeutic protein(s) in vivo by the genes transferred and, in some cases, to show therapeutic benefit. There is no single source of information that presents an overview of all the clinical trials undertaken worldwide. In 1997 we set up a database to bring all the information on clinical trials together as comprehensively and as globally as possible. The data were compiled and are regularly updated from official agency sources, the published literature, presentations at conferences and from information kindly provided by investigators or trial sponsors themselves. As of January 31, 2004, we have identified 918 trials in 24 countries. The USA accounts for two-thirds of these trials. Cancer is by far the most common disease indication, followed by inherited monogenic diseases, and cardiovascular diseases. Viral vectors have been the most frequently used vehicles for transferring genes into human cells, with retroviruses and adenoviruses representing the vast majority. Plasmid (naked) DNA and other non-viral vectors have been used in one-quarter of the trials. Over 100 distinct genes have been transferred. This article aims to provide a descriptive overview of the clinical trials that, to the best of our knowledge, have been or are being performed worldwide. Details of the data presented, including an interactive, searchable database that currently holds information on 918

  3. Immunogenetic Factors Affecting Susceptibility of Humans and Rodents to Hantaviruses and the Clinical Course of Hantaviral Disease in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Charbonnel, Nathalie; Pagès, Marie; Sironen, Tarja; Henttonen, Heikki; Vapalahti, Olli; Mustonen, Jukka; Vaheri, Antti

    2014-01-01

    We reviewed the associations of immunity-related genes with susceptibility of humans and rodents to hantaviruses, and with severity of hantaviral diseases in humans. Several class I and class II HLA haplotypes were linked with severe or benign hantavirus infections, and these haplotypes varied among localities and hantaviruses. The polymorphism of other immunity-related genes including the C4A gene and a high-producing genotype of TNF gene associated with severe PUUV infection. Additional genes that may contribute to disease or to PUUV infection severity include non-carriage of the interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1RA) allele 2 and IL-1β (-511) allele 2, polymorphisms of plasminogen activator inhibitor (PAI-1) and platelet GP1a. In addition, immunogenetic studies have been conducted to identify mechanisms that could be linked with the persistence/clearance of hantaviruses in reservoirs. Persistence was associated during experimental infections with an upregulation of anti-inflammatory responses. Using natural rodent population samples, polymorphisms and/or expression levels of several genes have been analyzed. These genes were selected based on the literature of rodent or human/hantavirus interactions (some Mhc class II genes, Tnf promoter, and genes encoding the proteins TLR4, TLR7, Mx2 and β3 integrin). The comparison of genetic differentiation estimated between bank vole populations sampled over Europe, at neutral and candidate genes, has allowed to evidence signatures of selection for Tnf, Mx2 and the Drb Mhc class II genes. Altogether, these results corroborated the hypothesis of an evolution of tolerance strategies in rodents. We finally discuss the importance of these results from the medical and epidemiological perspectives. PMID:24859344

  4. Wildfire contribution to world-wide desertification.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neary, D.; Wittenberg, L.; Bautista, S.; Ffolliott, P.

    2009-04-01

    a three-year period (2003 - 2005). In 2005, 338,262 ha of forest land burned. This was a 77% increase over the 10-year burn average of 189,500 ha. Desertification is about the loss of the land's proper hydrologic function, biological productivity, and other ecosystem services as a result of human activities and climate change. It affects one third of the earth's surface and over a billion people. In the past, desertification was considered a problem of only arid, semi-arid, and dry sub-humid areas. However, humid zones can undergo desertification with the wrong combination of human impacts. The Amazon region is an example of where forest harvesting, shifting cut and burn agriculture, and large-scale grazing are producing desertification of a tropical rain forest on a large scale. Some of the environmental consequences of wildfires are vegetation destruction, plant species and type shifts, exotic plant invasions, wildlife habitat destruction, soil erosion, floods, watershed function decline, water supply disruption, and air pollution. All of these are immediate impacts. Some impacts will persist beyond the careers and lifetimes of individuals. Small, isolated areas do not produce noticeable desertification. But, the cumulative effect of multiple, large area, and adjacent fires can be landscape-level desertification. This paper examines wildfire contributions to desertification in regions of the world that are prone to wildfire and climate change.

  5. Glucocorticoids affect 24 h clock genes expression in human adipose tissue explant cultures

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    To examine firstly whether CLOCK exhibits a circadian expression in human visceral (V) and subcutaneous (S) adipose tissue (AT) in vitro as compared with BMAL1 and PER2, and secondly to investigate the possible effect of the glucocorticoid analogue dexamethasone (DEX) on positive and negative clock ...

  6. CULTURE CONDITIONS AFFECT HUMAN AIRWAY EPITHELIAL CELL RESPONSE TO DIESEL PARTICLE EXPOSURE IN VITRO

    EPA Science Inventory

    Diesel exhaust particles (DEP) are a ubiquitous ambient air contaminant that may contribute to the health effects of particulate matter inhalation. In vitro studies have shown that DEP exposure induces pro-inflammatory proteins in human airway epithelial cells (HAEC) with varying...

  7. Chemical forms of selenium affect glutatione peroxidase activity in human Caco-2 cell model

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The bioavailability of selenium (Se) is complicated because there are multiple naturally occurring chemical forms of this element in nature. Assessing the ability of a Se source to restore GPX1 activity in laboratory animals and humans is the most commonly used method. To search for an alternative (...

  8. Affective Bicultural and Global-Human Identity Scales for Mexican-American Adolescents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Der-Karabetian, Aghop; Ruiz, Yolanda

    Recent research in cultural diversity has concentrated on the complexity of ethnic and racial identity. This study measures the bicultural and global-human identities among first- and second-generation, Mexican-American adolescents. The participants, (84 male, 93 female) from Los Angeles high schools, had both parents of Mexican descent (60 of the…

  9. Muecas: a multi-sensor robotic head for affective human robot interaction and imitation.

    PubMed

    Cid, Felipe; Moreno, Jose; Bustos, Pablo; Núñez, Pedro

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a multi-sensor humanoid robotic head for human robot interaction. The design of the robotic head, Muecas, is based on ongoing research on the mechanisms of perception and imitation of human expressions and emotions. These mechanisms allow direct interaction between the robot and its human companion through the different natural language modalities: speech, body language and facial expressions. The robotic head has 12 degrees of freedom, in a human-like configuration, including eyes, eyebrows, mouth and neck, and has been designed and built entirely by IADeX (Engineering, Automation and Design of Extremadura) and RoboLab. A detailed description of its kinematics is provided along with the design of the most complex controllers. Muecas can be directly controlled by FACS (Facial Action Coding System), the de facto standard for facial expression recognition and synthesis. This feature facilitates its use by third party platforms and encourages the development of imitation and of goal-based systems. Imitation systems learn from the user, while goal-based ones use planning techniques to drive the user towards a final desired state. To show the flexibility and reliability of the robotic head, the paper presents a software architecture that is able to detect, recognize, classify and generate facial expressions in real time using FACS. This system has been implemented using the robotics framework, RoboComp, which provides hardware-independent access to the sensors in the head. Finally, the paper presents experimental results showing the real-time functioning of the whole system, including recognition and imitation of human facial expressions. PMID:24787636

  10. Muecas: A Multi-Sensor Robotic Head for Affective Human Robot Interaction and Imitation

    PubMed Central

    Cid, Felipe; Moreno, Jose; Bustos, Pablo; Núñez, Pedro

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents a multi-sensor humanoid robotic head for human robot interaction. The design of the robotic head, Muecas, is based on ongoing research on the mechanisms of perception and imitation of human expressions and emotions. These mechanisms allow direct interaction between the robot and its human companion through the different natural language modalities: speech, body language and facial expressions. The robotic head has 12 degrees of freedom, in a human-like configuration, including eyes, eyebrows, mouth and neck, and has been designed and built entirely by IADeX (Engineering, Automation and Design of Extremadura) and RoboLab. A detailed description of its kinematics is provided along with the design of the most complex controllers. Muecas can be directly controlled by FACS (Facial Action Coding System), the de facto standard for facial expression recognition and synthesis. This feature facilitates its use by third party platforms and encourages the development of imitation and of goal-based systems. Imitation systems learn from the user, while goal-based ones use planning techniques to drive the user towards a final desired state. To show the flexibility and reliability of the robotic head, the paper presents a software architecture that is able to detect, recognize, classify and generate facial expressions in real time using FACS. This system has been implemented using the robotics framework, RoboComp, which provides hardware-independent access to the sensors in the head. Finally, the paper presents experimental results showing the real-time functioning of the whole system, including recognition and imitation of human facial expressions. PMID:24787636

  11. Cdx2 Polymorphism Affects the Activities of Vitamin D Receptor in Human Breast Cancer Cell Lines and Human Breast Carcinomas

    PubMed Central

    Di Benedetto, Anna; Korita, Etleva; Goeman, Frauke; Sacconi, Andrea; Biagioni, Francesca; Blandino, Giovanni; Strano, Sabrina; Muti, Paola; Mottolese, Marcella; Falvo, Elisabetta

    2015-01-01

    Vitamin D plays a role in cancer development and acts through the vitamin D receptor (VDR). It regulates the action of hormone responsive genes and is involved in cell cycle regulation, differentiation and apoptosis. VDR is a critical component of the vitamin D pathway and different common single nucleotide polymorphisms have been identified. Cdx2 VDR polymorphism can play an important role in breast cancer, modulating the activity of VDR. The objective of this study is to assess the relationship between the Cdx2 VDR polymorphism and the activities of VDR in human breast cancer cell lines and carcinomas breast patients. Cdx2 VDR polymorphism and antiproliferative effects of vitamin D treatment were investigated in a panel of estrogen receptor-positive (MCF7 and T-47D) and estrogen receptor-negative (MDA-MB-231, SUM 159PT, SK-BR-3, BT549, MDA-MB-468, HCC1143, BT20 and HCC1954) human breast cancer cell lines. Furthermore, the potential relationship among Cdx2 VDR polymorphism and a number of biomarkers used in clinical management of breast cancer was assessed in an ad hoc set of breast cancer cases. Vitamin D treatment efficacy was found to be strongly dependent on the Cdx2 VDR status in ER-negative breast cancer cell lines tested. In our series of breast cancer cases, the results indicated that patients with variant homozygote AA were associated with bio-pathological characteristics typical of more aggressive tumours, such as ER negative, HER2 positive and G3. Our results may suggest a potential effect of Cdx2 VDR polymorphism on the efficacy of vitamin D treatment in aggressive breast cancer cells (estrogen receptor negative). These results suggest that Cdx2 polymorphism may be a potential biomarker for vitamin D treatment in breast cancer, independently of the VDR receptor expression. PMID:25849303

  12. Cdx2 polymorphism affects the activities of vitamin D receptor in human breast cancer cell lines and human breast carcinomas.

    PubMed

    Pulito, Claudio; Terrenato, Irene; Di Benedetto, Anna; Korita, Etleva; Goeman, Frauke; Sacconi, Andrea; Biagioni, Francesca; Blandino, Giovanni; Strano, Sabrina; Muti, Paola; Mottolese, Marcella; Falvo, Elisabetta

    2015-01-01

    Vitamin D plays a role in cancer development and acts through the vitamin D receptor (VDR). It regulates the action of hormone responsive genes and is involved in cell cycle regulation, differentiation and apoptosis. VDR is a critical component of the vitamin D pathway and different common single nucleotide polymorphisms have been identified. Cdx2 VDR polymorphism can play an important role in breast cancer, modulating the activity of VDR. The objective of this study is to assess the relationship between the Cdx2 VDR polymorphism and the activities of VDR in human breast cancer cell lines and carcinomas breast patients. Cdx2 VDR polymorphism and antiproliferative effects of vitamin D treatment were investigated in a panel of estrogen receptor-positive (MCF7 and T-47D) and estrogen receptor-negative (MDA-MB-231, SUM 159PT, SK-BR-3, BT549, MDA-MB-468, HCC1143, BT20 and HCC1954) human breast cancer cell lines. Furthermore, the potential relationship among Cdx2 VDR polymorphism and a number of biomarkers used in clinical management of breast cancer was assessed in an ad hoc set of breast cancer cases. Vitamin D treatment efficacy was found to be strongly dependent on the Cdx2 VDR status in ER-negative breast cancer cell lines tested. In our series of breast cancer cases, the results indicated that patients with variant homozygote AA were associated with bio-pathological characteristics typical of more aggressive tumours, such as ER negative, HER2 positive and G3. Our results may suggest a potential effect of Cdx2 VDR polymorphism on the efficacy of vitamin D treatment in aggressive breast cancer cells (estrogen receptor negative). These results suggest that Cdx2 polymorphism may be a potential biomarker for vitamin D treatment in breast cancer, independently of the VDR receptor expression. PMID:25849303

  13. Data reprocessing on worldwide distributed systems

    SciTech Connect

    Diesburg, Mike; Wicke, Daniel; /Fermilab

    2004-12-01

    The D0 experiment faces many challenges enabling access to large datasets for physicists on 4 continents. The strategy followed is to make use of worldwide distributed computing clusters. Since the begin of Tevatron Run-II (March 2001) all Monte-Carlo simulations are produced outside of Fermilab on remote systems. For analyses a system of regional analysis centres (RACs) was established which supply the associated institutes with the data. This structure which is similar to the Tier structure foreseen for LHC was used in autumn 2003 to reprocess all D0-data with the up-to-date and much improved reconstruction software. With these achievements D0 is the first high energy physics experiment to have implemented and operated all essential computing tasks on non-dedicated, worldwide distributed systems. The experiences gained in D0 can be applied to evaluate the LHC computing model.

  14. World-wide precision airports for SVS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schiefele, Jens; Lugsch, Bill; Launer, Marc; Baca, Diana

    2004-08-01

    Future cockpit and aviation applications require high quality airport databases. Accuracy, resolution, integrity, completeness, traceability, and timeliness [1] are key requirements. For most aviation applications, attributed vector databases are needed. The geometry is based on points, lines, and closed polygons. To document the needs for aviation industry RTCA and EUROCAE developed in a joint committee, the DO-272/ED-99 document. It states industry needs for data features, attributes, coding, and capture rules for Airport Mapping Databases (AMDB). This paper describes the technical approach Jeppesen has taken to generate a world-wide set of three-hundred AMDB airports. All AMDB airports are DO-200A/ED-76 [1] and DO-272/ED-99 [2] compliant. Jeppesen airports have a 5m (CE90) accuracy and an 10-3 integrity. World-wide all AMDB data is delivered in WGS84 coordinates. Jeppesen continually updates the databases.

  15. Exploring the Universe with the Worldwide Telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fay, J. E.

    2014-12-01

    Microsoft Research WorldWide Telescope is a software platform for exploring the universe. Whether you are a researcher, student or just a casual explorer WorldWide Telescope uses cutting edge technology to take you anywhere in the universe and visualize data collected by science programs from across the globe, including NASA great observatories and planetary probes. WWT leverages technologies such as Virtual reality headsets, multi-channel full dome projection and HTML5/WebGL to bring the WWT experience to any device and any scale. We will discuss how to use WWT to browse previously curated data, as well as how to process and visualize your own data, using examples from NASA Mars missions.

  16. Derivation of NEM2 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea080.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea080 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying compound heterozygous mutations in the NEB gene, exon 55 deletion & c.15110dupA, indicative of Nemaline Myopathy Type 2 (NEM2). Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XY and STR analysis demonstrated a male allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 90% of cells expressed Nanog, 95% Oct4, 54% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4 and gave a PluriTest Pluripotency score of 32.08, Novelty of 1.3. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346011

  17. Derivation of FSHD1 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea049.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Chami, Omar; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea049 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying a deletion in 4q35 with only 5 D4Z4 repeats by PGD linkage analysis, indicative of FSHD1. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 90% of cells expressed Nanog, 96% Oct4, 80% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4, gave a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 23.16, Novelty of 1.43 and demonstrated Alkaline Phosphatase activity. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346016

  18. Derivation of NEM2 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea078.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Main, Heather; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea078 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying compound heterozygous mutations in the NEB gene, exon 55 deletion & c.15110dupA, indicative of Nemaline Myopathy Type 2 (NEM2). Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 76% of cells expressed Nanog, 93% Oct4, 67% Tra1-60 and 97% SSEA4 and gave a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 42.18, Novelty of 1.37. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346006

  19. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea017 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli; Peura, Teija

    2016-03-01

    The Genea017 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Htt gene CAG expansion of 40 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, genetic analysis confirmed a 46, XY karyotype and male allele pattern through CGH and STR analysis. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 87% of cells expressed Nanog, 95% Oct4, 88% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4, gave a PluriTest pluripotency score of 34.74, novelty of 1.27, demonstrated alkaline phosphatase activity and tri-lineage teratoma formation. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346022

  20. Derivation of FSHD1 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea050.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Chami, Omar; Main, Heather; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea050 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying a deletion in 4q35 with only 5 D4Z4 repeats by PGD linkage analysis, indicative of FSHD1. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XY and STR analysis demonstrated a male Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 92% of cells expressed Nanog, 97% Oct4, 79% Tra1-60 and 99% SSEA4, gave a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 25.45, Novelty of 1.45 demonstrated Alkaline Phosphatase activity and tri-lineage teratoma formation. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346025

  1. Derivation of FSHD1 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea096.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Schaft, Julia; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea096 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying a deletion in 4q35 with only 6 D4Z4 repeats by PGD linkage analysis, indicative of FSHD1. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 64% of cells expressed Nanog, 93% Oct4, 58% Tra1-60 and 93% SSEA4 and a Pluritest Pluripotency score of 39.41, Novelty of 1.25. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346027

  2. Derivation of Huntington Disease affected Genea018 human embryonic stem cell line.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; Main, Heather; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli; Peura, Teija

    2016-03-01

    The Genea018 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying Htt gene CAG expansion of 46 repeats, indicative of Huntington Disease. Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XX by CGH and STR analysis demonstrated a female Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 75% of cells expressed Nanog, 91% Oct4, 73% Tra1-60 and 96% SSEA4, gave a Pluritest pluripotency score of 31.12, Novelty of 1.45, demonstrated Alkaline Phosphatase activity and tri-lineage teratoma formation. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346005

  3. Derivation of NEM2 affected human embryonic stem cell line Genea079.

    PubMed

    Dumevska, Biljana; McKernan, Robert; Goel, Divya; Schmidt, Uli

    2016-03-01

    The Genea079 human embryonic stem cell line was derived from a donated, fully commercially consented ART blastocyst, carrying compound heterozygous mutations in the NEB gene, exon 55 deletion & c.15110dupA, indicative of Nemaline Myopathy Type 2 (NEM2). Following ICM outgrowth on inactivated human feeders, karyotype was confirmed as 46, XY and STR analysis demonstrated a male Allele pattern. The hESC line had pluripotent cell morphology, 86% of cells expressed Nanog, 95% Oct4, 54% Tra1-60 and 98% SSEA4 and gave a PluriTest Pluripotency score of 30.25, Novelty of 1.21. The cell line was negative for Mycoplasma and visible contamination. PMID:27346010

  4. Clostridium difficile PCR ribotype 078 toxinotype V found in diarrhoeal pigs identical to isolates from affected humans.

    PubMed

    Debast, Sylvia B; van Leengoed, Leo A M G; Goorhuis, Abraham; Harmanus, Celine; Kuijper, Ed J; Bergwerff, Aldert A

    2009-02-01

    In diseased piglets from two Dutch pig-breeding farms with neonatal diarrhoea for more than a year, culture and PCR analyses identified the involved microorganism as Clostridium difficile PCR ribotype 078 harbouring toxin A (tcdA) and B (tcdB), and binary toxin genes. Isolated strains showed a 39 bp deletion in the tcdC gene and they were ermB gene-negative. A number of 11 porcine and 21 human isolated C. difficile PCR ribotype 078 toxinotype V strains were found genetically related by multiple-locus variable-number tandem-repeat analysis (MLVA). Moreover, a clonal complex was identified, containing both porcine and human isolates. The porcine isolates showed an antimicrobial susceptibility profile overlapping that of isolates from Dutch human patients. On the basis of these pheno- and genotypical analyses results, it was concluded that the strains from affected piglets were indistinguishable from increasingly encountered C. difficile PCR ribotype 078 strains of human C. difficile infections in the Dutch population and that a common origin of animal and humans strains should be considered. PMID:19196280

  5. Low concentrations of Bisphenol A and para-Nonylphenol affect extravillous pathway of human trophoblast cells.

    PubMed

    Spagnoletti, Antonella; Paulesu, Luana; Mannelli, Chiara; Ermini, Leonardo; Romagnoli, Roberta; Cintorino, Marcella; Ietta, Francesca

    2015-09-01

    Bisphenol A (BPA) and para-Nonylphenol (p-NP) are chemicals of industrial origin which may influence human reproductive health. The effects of these substances in the prenatal life is an important topic that is receiving greater attention in the developed countries. In this study, human trophoblast cells HTR-8/SVneo were exposed to BPA and p-NP (1 × 10(-15), 1 × 10(-13), 1 × 10(-11), 1 × 10(-9) and 1 × 10(-7) M) and incubated for 24, 48 and/or 72 h then, examined for the main physiological processes which characterize the extravillous trophoblast. Cell proliferation showed no changes while the processes of cell migration and invasion were both reduced by BPA and p-NP. For each chemical, the activity was higher at lower concentrations with a maximum activity between 1 × 10(-13) and 1 × 10(-11) M (p < 0.05 for 1 × 10(-9) and p < 0.001 for 1 × 10(-11) M). Co-culture studies with human umbilical cord endothelial cells (HUVEC) revealed that trophoblast/endothelial interaction was significantly reduced by p-NP at 1 × 10(-11) M. Moreover, both chemicals were inducing differentiation of HTR-8/SVneo toward polyploidy by the process of endoreduplication. The estrogen-receptor antagonist ICI significantly reduced p-NP action, while it had no effect on BPA treated cells. In conclusion, p-NP and BPA act on trophoblast cells altering key physiological processes in placenta development. The exact mechanism of action of the chemicals in human trophoblast still needs to be clarified. PMID:26027920

  6. Hundreds of variants clustered in genomic loci and biological pathways affect human height

    PubMed Central

    Lango Allen, Hana; Estrada, Karol; Lettre, Guillaume; Berndt, Sonja I.; Weedon, Michael N.; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Willer, Cristen J.; Jackson, Anne U.; Vedantam, Sailaja; Raychaudhuri, Soumya; Ferreira, Teresa; Wood, Andrew R.; Weyant, Robert J.; Segrè, Ayellet V.; Speliotes, Elizabeth K.; Wheeler, Eleanor; Soranzo, Nicole; Park, Ju-Hyun; Yang, Jian; Gudbjartsson, Daniel; Heard-Costa, Nancy L.; Randall, Joshua C.; Qi, Lu; Smith, Albert Vernon; Mägi, Reedik; Pastinen, Tomi; Liang, Liming; Heid, Iris M.; Luan, Jian'an; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Winkler, Thomas W.; Goddard, Michael E.; Lo, Ken Sin; Palmer, Cameron; Workalemahu, Tsegaselassie; Aulchenko, Yurii S.; Johansson, Åsa; Zillikens, M.Carola; Feitosa, Mary F.; Esko, Tõnu; Johnson, Toby; Ketkar, Shamika; Kraft, Peter; Mangino, Massimo; Prokopenko, Inga; Absher, Devin; Albrecht, Eva; Ernst, Florian; Glazer, Nicole L.; Hayward, Caroline; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Jacobs, Kevin B.; Knowles, Joshua W.; Kutalik, Zoltán; Monda, Keri L.; Polasek, Ozren; Preuss, Michael; Rayner, Nigel W.; Robertson, Neil R.; Steinthorsdottir, Valgerdur; Tyrer, Jonathan P.; Voight, Benjamin F.; Wiklund, Fredrik; Xu, Jianfeng; Zhao, Jing Hua; Nyholt, Dale R.; Pellikka, Niina; Perola, Markus; Perry, John R.B.; Surakka, Ida; Tammesoo, Mari-Liis; Altmaier, Elizabeth L.; Amin, Najaf; Aspelund, Thor; Bhangale, Tushar; Boucher, Gabrielle; Chasman, Daniel I.; Chen, Constance; Coin, Lachlan; Cooper, Matthew N.; Dixon, Anna L.; Gibson, Quince; Grundberg, Elin; Hao, Ke; Junttila, M. Juhani; Kaplan, Lee M.; Kettunen, Johannes; König, Inke R.; Kwan, Tony; Lawrence, Robert W.; Levinson, Douglas F.; Lorentzon, Mattias; McKnight, Barbara; Morris, Andrew P.; Müller, Martina; Ngwa, Julius Suh; Purcell, Shaun; Rafelt, Suzanne; Salem, Rany M.; Salvi, Erika; Sanna, Serena; Shi, Jianxin; Sovio, Ulla; Thompson, John R.; Turchin, Michael C.; Vandenput, Liesbeth; Verlaan, Dominique J.; Vitart, Veronique; White, Charles C.; Ziegler, Andreas; Almgren, Peter; Balmforth, Anthony J.; Campbell, Harry; Citterio, Lorena; De Grandi, Alessandro; Dominiczak, Anna; Duan, Jubao; Elliott, Paul; Elosua, Roberto; Eriksson, Johan G.; Freimer, Nelson B.; Geus, Eco J.C.; Glorioso, Nicola; Haiqing, Shen; Hartikainen, Anna-Liisa; Havulinna, Aki S.; Hicks, Andrew A.; Hui, Jennie; Igl, Wilmar; Illig, Thomas; Jula, Antti; Kajantie, Eero; Kilpeläinen, Tuomas O.; Koiranen, Markku; Kolcic, Ivana; Koskinen, Seppo; Kovacs, Peter; Laitinen, Jaana; Liu, Jianjun; Lokki, Marja-Liisa; Marusic, Ana; Maschio, Andrea; Meitinger, Thomas; Mulas, Antonella; Paré, Guillaume; Parker, Alex N.; Peden, John F.; Petersmann, Astrid; Pichler, Irene; Pietiläinen, Kirsi H.; Pouta, Anneli; Ridderstråle, Martin; Rotter, Jerome I.; Sambrook, Jennifer G.; Sanders, Alan R.; Schmidt, Carsten Oliver; Sinisalo, Juha; Smit, Jan H.; Stringham, Heather M.; Walters, G.Bragi; Widen, Elisabeth; Wild, Sarah H.; Willemsen, Gonneke; Zagato, Laura; Zgaga, Lina; Zitting, Paavo; Alavere, Helene; Farrall, Martin; McArdle, Wendy L.; Nelis, Mari; Peters, Marjolein J.; Ripatti, Samuli; van Meurs, Joyce B.J.; Aben, Katja K.; Ardlie, Kristin G; Beckmann, Jacques S.; Beilby, John P.; Bergman, Richard N.; Bergmann, Sven; Collins, Francis S.; Cusi, Daniele; den Heijer, Martin; Eiriksdottir, Gudny; Gejman, Pablo V.; Hall, Alistair S.; Hamsten, Anders; Huikuri, Heikki V.; Iribarren, Carlos; Kähönen, Mika; Kaprio, Jaakko; Kathiresan, Sekar; Kiemeney, Lambertus; Kocher, Thomas; Launer, Lenore J.; Lehtimäki, Terho; Melander, Olle; Mosley, Tom H.; Musk, Arthur W.; Nieminen, Markku S.; O'Donnell, Christopher J.; Ohlsson, Claes; Oostra, Ben; Palmer, Lyle J.; Raitakari, Olli; Ridker, Paul M.; Rioux, John D.; Rissanen, Aila; Rivolta, Carlo; Schunkert, Heribert; Shuldiner, Alan R.; Siscovick, David S.; Stumvoll, Michael; Tönjes, Anke; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; van Ommen, Gert-Jan; Viikari, Jorma; Heath, Andrew C.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Province, Michael A.; Kayser, Manfred; Arnold, Alice M.; Atwood, Larry D.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Chanock, Stephen J.; Deloukas, Panos; Gieger, Christian; Grönberg, Henrik; Hall, Per; Hattersley, Andrew T.; Hengstenberg, Christian; Hoffman, Wolfgang; Lathrop, G.Mark; Salomaa, Veikko; Schreiber, Stefan; Uda, Manuela; Waterworth, Dawn; Wright, Alan F.; Assimes, Themistocles L.; Barroso, Inês; Hofman, Albert; Mohlke, Karen L.; Boomsma, Dorret I.; Caulfield, Mark J.; Cupples, L.Adrienne; Erdmann, Jeanette; Fox, Caroline S.; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Gyllensten, Ulf; Harris, Tamara B.; Hayes, Richard B.; Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Mooser, Vincent; Munroe, Patricia B.; Ouwehand, Willem H.; Penninx, Brenda W.; Pramstaller, Peter P.; Quertermous, Thomas; Rudan, Igor; Samani, Nilesh J.; Spector, Timothy D.; Völzke, Henry; Watkins, Hugh; Wilson, James F.; Groop, Leif C.; Haritunians, Talin; Hu, Frank B.; Kaplan, Robert C.; Metspalu, Andres; North, Kari E.; Schlessinger, David; Wareham, Nicholas J.; Hunter, David J.; O'Connell, Jeffrey R.; Strachan, David P.; Wichmann, H.-Erich; Borecki, Ingrid B.; van Duijn, Cornelia M.; Schadt, Eric E.; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Peltonen, Leena; Uitterlinden, André; Visscher, Peter M.; Chatterjee, Nilanjan; Loos, Ruth J.F.; Boehnke, Michael; McCarthy, Mark I.; Ingelsson, Erik; Lindgren, Cecilia M.; Abecasis, Gonçalo R.; Stefansson, Kari; Frayling, Timothy M.; Hirschhorn, Joel N

    2010-01-01

    Most common human traits and diseases have a polygenic pattern of inheritance: DNA sequence variants at many genetic loci influence phenotype. Genome-wide association (GWA) studies have identified >600 variants associated with human traits1, but these typically explain small fractions of phenotypic variation, raising questions about the utility of further studies. Here, using 183,727 individuals, we show that hundreds of genetic variants, in at least 180 loci, influence adult height, a highly heritable and classic polygenic trait2,3. The large number of loci reveals patterns with important implications for genetic studies of common human diseases and traits. First, the 180 loci are not random, but instead are enriched for genes that are connected in biological pathways (P=0.016), and that underlie skeletal growth defects (P<0.001). Second, the likely causal gene is often located near the most strongly associated variant: in 13 of 21 loci containing a known skeletal growth gene, that gene was closest to the associated variant. Third, at least 19 loci have multiple independently associated variants, suggesting that allelic heterogeneity is a frequent feature of polygenic traits, that comprehensive explorations of already-discovered loci should discover additional variants, and that an appreciable fraction of associated loci may have been identified. Fourth, associated variants are enriched for likely functional effects on genes, being over-represented amongst variants that alter amino acid structure of proteins and expression levels of nearby genes. Our data explain ∼10% of the phenotypic variation in height, and we estimate that unidentified common variants of similar effect sizes would increase this figure to ∼16% of phenotypic variation (∼20% of heritable variation). Although additional approaches are needed to fully dissect the genetic architecture of polygenic human traits, our findings indicate that GWA studies can identify large numbers of loci that

  7. Regional paleofire regimes affected by non-uniform climate, vegetation and human drivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blarquez, Olivier; Ali, Adam A.; Girardin, Martin P.; Grondin, Pierre; Fréchette, Bianca; Bergeron, Yves; Hély, Christelle

    2015-09-01

    Climate, vegetation and humans act on biomass burning at different spatial and temporal scales. In this study, we used a dense network of sedimentary charcoal records from eastern Canada to reconstruct regional biomass burning history over the last 7000 years at the scale of four potential vegetation types: open coniferous forest/tundra, boreal coniferous forest, boreal mixedwood forest and temperate forest. The biomass burning trajectories were compared with regional climate trends reconstructed from general circulation models, tree biomass reconstructed from pollen series, and human population densities. We found that non-uniform climate, vegetation and human drivers acted on regional biomass burning history. In the open coniferous forest/tundra and dense coniferous forest, the regional biomass burning was primarily shaped by gradual establishment of less climate-conducive burning conditions over 5000 years. In the mixed boreal forest an increasing relative proportion of flammable conifers in landscapes since 2000 BP contributed to maintaining biomass burning constant despite climatic conditions less favourable to fires. In the temperate forest, biomass burning was uncoupled with climatic conditions and the main driver was seemingly vegetation until European colonization, i.e. 300 BP. Tree biomass and thus fuel accumulation modulated fire activity, an indication that biomass burning is fuel-dependent and notably upon long-term co-dominance shifts between conifers and broadleaf trees.

  8. Multiple factors affect immunogenicity of DNA plasmid HIV vaccines in human clinical trials

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Xia; Morgan, Cecilia; Yu, Xuesong; DeRosa, Stephen; Tomaras, Georgia D.; Montefiori, David C.; Kublin, James; Corey, Larry; Keefer, Michael C.

    2015-01-01

    Plasmid DNA vaccines have been licensed for use in domesticated animals because of their excellent immunogenicity, but none have yet been licensed for use in humans. Here we report a retrospective analysis of 1218 healthy human volunteers enrolled in 10 phase I clinical trials in which DNA plasmids encoding HIV antigens were administered. Elicited T-cell immune responses were quantified by validated intracellular cytokine staining (ICS) stimulated with HIV peptide pools. HIV-specific binding and neutralizing antibody activities were also analyzed using validated assays. Results showed that, in the absence of adjuvants and boosting with alternative vaccines, DNA vaccines elicited CD8+ and CD4+ T-cell responses in an average of 13.3% (95% CI: 9.8% to 17.8%) and 37.7% (95% CI: 31.9% to 43.8%) of vaccine recipients, respectively. Three vaccinations (versus 2) improved the proportion of subjects with antigen-specific CD8+ responses (p=0.02), as did increased DNA dosage (p=0.007). Furthermore, female gender and participants having a lower Body Mass Index were independently associated with higher CD4+ T-cell response rate (p=0.001 and p=0.008, respectively). These vaccines elicited minimal neutralizing and binding antibody responses. These findings of the immunogenicity of HIV DNA vaccines in humans can provide guidance for future clinical trials. PMID:25820067

  9. Atrazine Affects Phosphoprotein and Protein Expression in MCF-10A Human Breast Epithelial Cells

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Peixin; Yang, John; Song, Qisheng; Sheehan, David

    2014-01-01

    Atrazine, a member of the 2-chloro-s-triazine family of herbicides, is the most widely used pesticide in the world and often detected in agriculture watersheds. Although it was generally considered as an endocrine disruptor, posing a potential threat to human health, the molecular mechanisms of atrazine effects remain unclear. Using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, we identified a panel of differentially expressed phosphoproteins and total proteins in human breast epithelial MCF-10A cells after being exposed to environmentally relevant concentrations of atrazine. Atrazine treatments for 6 h resulted in differential expression of 4 phosphoproteins and 8 total-proteins as compared to the control cells (>1.5-fold, p < 0.05). MALDI-TOF MS/MS analysis revealed that the differentially expressed proteins belong to various cellular compartments (nucleus, cytosol, membrane) and varied in function, including those regulating the stress response such as peroxiredoxin I, HSP70 and HSP27; structural proteins such as tropomyosin and profilin 1; and oncogenesis proteins such as ANP32A. Six of the 12 identified proteins were verified by quantitative PCR for their transcript levels. The most up-regulated phosphoprotein by atrazine treatment, ANP32A, was further analyzed for its expression, distribution and cellular localization using Western blot and immunocytochemical approaches. The results revealed that ANP32 expression after atrazine treatment increased dose and time dependently and was primarily located in the nucleus. This study may provide new evidence on the potential toxicity of atrazine in human cells. PMID:25275270

  10. Reducing the likelihood of future human activities that could affect geologic high-level waste repositories

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-05-01

    The disposal of radioactive wastes in deep geologic formations provides a means of isolating the waste from people until the radioactivity has decayed to safe levels. However, isolating people from the wastes is a different problem, since we do not know what the future condition of society will be. The Human Interference Task Force was convened by the US Department of Energy to determine whether reasonable means exist (or could be developed) to reduce the likelihood of future human unintentionally intruding on radioactive waste isolation systems. The task force concluded that significant reductions in the likelihood of human interference could be achieved, for perhaps thousands of years into the future, if appropriate steps are taken to communicate the existence of the repository. Consequently, for two years the task force directed most of its study toward the area of long-term communication. Methods are discussed for achieving long-term communication by using permanent markers and widely disseminated records, with various steps taken to provide multiple levels of protection against loss, destruction, and major language/societal changes. Also developed is the concept of a universal symbol to denote Caution - Biohazardous Waste Buried Here. If used for the thousands of non-radioactive biohazardous waste sites in this country alone, a symbol could transcend generations and language changes, thereby vastly improving the likelihood of successful isolation of all buried biohazardous wastes.

  11. Host protein Snapin interacts with human cytomegalovirus pUL130 and affects viral DNA replication.

    PubMed

    Wang, Guili; Ren, Gaowei; Cui, Xin; Lu, Zhitao; Ma, Yanpin; Qi, Ying; Huang, Yujing; Liu, Zhongyang; Sun, Zhengrong; Ruan, Qiang

    2016-06-01

    The interplay between the host and Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) plays a pivotal role in the outcome of an infection. HCMV growth in endothelial and epithelial cells requires expression of viral proteins UL128, UL130, and UL131 proteins (UL128-131), of which UL130 is the largest gene and the only one that is not interrupted by introns.Mutation of the C terminus of the UL130 protein causes reduced tropism of endothelial cells (EC). However, very few host factors have been identified that interact with the UL130 protein. In this study, HCMV UL130 protein was shown to directly interact with the human protein Snapin in human embryonic kidney HEK293 cells by Yeast two-hybrid screening, in vitro glutathione S-transferase (GST) pull-down, and co-immunoprecipitation. Additionally, heterologous expression of protein UL130 revealed co-localization with Snapin in the cell membrane and cytoplasm of HEK293 cells using fluorescence confocal microscopy. Furthermore, decreasing the level of Snapin via specific small interfering RNAs decreased the number of viral DNA copies and titer inHCMV-infected U373-S cells. Taken together, these results suggest that Snapin, the pUL130 interacting protein, has a role in modulating HCMV DNA synthesis. PMID:27240978

  12. Regional paleofire regimes affected by non-uniform climate, vegetation and human drivers

    PubMed Central

    Blarquez, Olivier; Ali, Adam A.; Girardin, Martin P.; Grondin, Pierre; Fréchette, Bianca; Bergeron, Yves; Hély, Christelle

    2015-01-01

    Climate, vegetation and humans act on biomass burning at different spatial and temporal scales. In this study, we used a dense network of sedimentary charcoal records from eastern Canada to reconstruct regional biomass burning history over the last 7000 years at the scale of four potential vegetation types: open coniferous forest/tundra, boreal coniferous forest, boreal mixedwood forest and temperate forest. The biomass burning trajectories were compared with regional climate trends reconstructed from general circulation models, tree biomass reconstructed from pollen series, and human population densities. We found that non-uniform climate, vegetation and human drivers acted on regional biomass burning history. In the open coniferous forest/tundra and dense coniferous forest, the regional biomass burning was primarily shaped by gradual establishment of less climate-conducive burning conditions over 5000 years. In the mixed boreal forest an increasing relative proportion of flammable conifers in landscapes since 2000 BP contributed to maintaining biomass burning constant despite climatic conditions less favourable to fires. In the temperate forest, biomass burning was uncoupled with climatic conditions and the main driver was seemingly vegetation until European colonization, i.e. 300 BP. Tree biomass and thus fuel accumulation modulated fire activity, an indication that biomass burning is fuel-dependent and notably upon long-term co-dominance shifts between conifers and broadleaf trees. PMID:26330162

  13. Regional paleofire regimes affected by non-uniform climate, vegetation and human drivers.

    PubMed

    Blarquez, Olivier; Ali, Adam A; Girardin, Martin P; Grondin, Pierre; Fréchette, Bianca; Bergeron, Yves; Hély, Christelle

    2015-01-01

    Climate, vegetation and humans act on biomass burning at different spatial and temporal scales. In this study, we used a dense network of sedimentary charcoal records from eastern Canada to reconstruct regional biomass burning history over the last 7000 years at the scale of four potential vegetation types: open coniferous forest/tundra, boreal coniferous forest, boreal mixedwood forest and temperate forest. The biomass burning trajectories were compared with regional climate trends reconstructed from general circulation models, tree biomass reconstructed from pollen series, and human population densities. We found that non-uniform climate, vegetation and human drivers acted on regional biomass burning history. In the open coniferous forest/tundra and dense coniferous forest, the regional biomass burning was primarily shaped by gradual establishment of less climate-conducive burning conditions over 5000 years. In the mixed boreal forest an increasing relative proportion of flammable conifers in landscapes since 2000 BP contributed to maintaining biomass burning constant despite climatic conditions less favourable to fires. In the temperate forest, biomass burning was uncoupled with climatic conditions and the main driver was seemingly vegetation until European colonization, i.e. 300 BP. Tree biomass and thus fuel accumulation modulated fire activity, an indication that biomass burning is fuel-dependent and notably upon long-term co-dominance shifts between conifers and broadleaf trees. PMID:26330162

  14. Clostridium difficile Infection: A Worldwide Disease

    PubMed Central

    Burke, Kristin E.

    2014-01-01

    Clostridium difficile, an anaerobic toxigenic bacterium, causes a severe infectious colitis that leads to significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. Both enhanced bacterial toxins and diminished host immune response contribute to symptomatic disease. C. difficile has been a well-established pathogen in North America and Europe for decades, but is just emerging in Asia. This article reviews the epidemiology, microbiology, pathophysiology, and clinical management of C. difficile. Prompt recognition of C. difficile is necessary to implement appropriate infection control practices. PMID:24516694

  15. Integrating WorldWide Telescope with Wordpress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sands, Mark; Luebbert, J.; Fay, J.; Gay, P. L.

    2010-01-01

    In this project we unite three major components of astronomy and new media: World Wide Telescope, Wordpress, and user supplied audio. Through an easy to use Wordpress plug-in users can create WorldWide Telescope sky tours that allow: a) astronomers and educators to spread the facts and awareness of astronomy, potentially bringing new and interested individuals into the astronomy community; b) bloggers/podcasters to create dynamic, virtual tours of the universe that are nearly boundless; and, c) readers to benefit from the alluring WorldWide Telescope tours by gaining a new and dramatic outlook on our universe. This software has the potential to augment, and in some cases replace, traditional methods of astronomy centered online lectures. With this plugin, it is possible to combine Wordpress-based website content with audio, and a sky tour that can be paused at any object. This ability to pause a sky tour allows the user to further explore the wealth of data provided within WWT. This fully customizable solution includes all of the necessary features required to reproduce a lecture in a more creative and appealing format then some of the standard, typically non-interactive, movies and podcasts currently found online. Through the creation of effective WorldWide Telescope tours, astronomers and educators can better extend astronomy content to astronomy-interested, but not yet engaged, members of the new media community. These tours will provide a better understanding and appreciation for what our universe has to offer. Through this new media approach of integrating WorldWide Telescope with blogs and podcasts, users can now extend their interest in astronomy by exploring the universe themselves, moving beyond provided content to gain a better understanding all on their own.

  16. Human brain EEG indices of emotions: delineating responses to affective vocalizations by measuring frontal theta event-related synchronization.

    PubMed

    Bekkedal, Marni Y V; Rossi, John; Panksepp, Jaak

    2011-10-01

    At present there is no direct brain measure of basic emotional dynamics from the human brain. EEG provides non-invasive approaches for monitoring brain electrical activity to emotional stimuli. Event-related desynchronization/synchronization (ERD/ERS) analysis, based on power shifts in specific frequency bands, has some potential as a method for differentiating responses to basic emotions as measured during brief presentations of affective stimuli. Although there appears to be fairly consistent theta ERS in frontal regions of the brain during the earliest phases of processing affective auditory stimuli, the patterns do not readily distinguish between specific emotions. To date it has not been possible to consistently differentiate brain responses to emotion-specific affective states or stimuli, and some evidence to suggests the theta ERS more likely measures general arousal processes rather than yielding veridical indices of specific emotional states. Perhaps cortical EEG patterns will never be able to be used to distinguish discrete emotional states from the surface of the brain. The implications and limitations of such approaches for understanding human emotions are discussed. PMID:21596060

  17. Crucial Dimensions of Human Altruism. Affective vs. Conceptual Factors Leading to Helping or Reinforcing Others

    PubMed Central

    Szuster, Anna

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this article is to identify factors leading to favorable attitudes toward other people from different social categories. The parts of article reflect diverse levels of altruism regulation from primary affective responses to the environment, through social norms, to abstract moral concepts related to good and evil. The latter allow understanding of the perspective of other people (including those belonging to out-groups), acceptance of their values and engagement not only in helping behavior but also in supporting the development of others. PMID:27148127

  18. Crucial Dimensions of Human Altruism. Affective vs. Conceptual Factors Leading to Helping or Reinforcing Others.

    PubMed

    Szuster, Anna

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this article is to identify factors leading to favorable attitudes toward other people from different social categories. The parts of article reflect diverse levels of altruism regulation from primary affective responses to the environment, through social norms, to abstract moral concepts related to good and evil. The latter allow understanding of the perspective of other people (including those belonging to out-groups), acceptance of their values and engagement not only in helping behavior but also in supporting the development of others. PMID:27148127

  19. Human Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cell Function and Dendritic Cell Differentiation Are Affected by Bisphenol-A Exposure

    PubMed Central

    Ariemma, Fabiana; Cimmino, Ilaria; Bruzzese, Dario; Scerbo, Roberta; Picascia, Stefania; D’Esposito, Vittoria; Beguinot, Francesco; Formisano, Pietro

    2016-01-01

    Environmental pollutants, including endocrine disruptor chemicals (EDCs), interfere on human health, leading to hormonal, immune and metabolic perturbations. Bisphenol-A (BPA), a main component of polycarbonate plastics, has been receiving increased attention due to its worldwide distribution with a large exposure. In humans, BPA, for its estrogenic activity, may have a role in autoimmunity, inflammatory and allergic diseases. To this aim, we assessed the effect of low BPA doses on functionality of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), and on in vitro differentiation of dendritic cells from monocytes (mDCs). Fresh peripheral blood samples were obtained from 12 healthy adult volunteers. PBMCs were left unstimulated or were activated with the mitogen phytohemagglutinin (PHA) or the anti-CD3 and anti-CD28 antibodies and incubated in presence or absence of BPA at 0.1 and 1nM concentrations. The immune-modulatory effect of BPA was assessed by evaluating the cell proliferation and the levels of interferon-γ (IFN-γ), interleukin-4 (IL-4), interleukin-10 (IL-10) and interleukin-13 (IL-13) secreted by PBMCs. mDCs were differentiated with IL-4 and GC-CSF with or without BPA and the expression of differentiation/maturation markers (CD11c, CD1a, CD86, HLA-DR) was evaluated by flow cytometry; furthermore, a panel of 27 different cytokines, growth factors and chemokines were assayed in the mDC culture supernatants. PBMCs proliferation significantly increased upon BPA exposure compared to BPA untreated cells. In addition, a significant decrease in IL-10 secretion was observed in PBMCs incubated with BPA, either in unstimulated or mitogen-stimulated cells, and at both 0.1 and 1nM BPA concentrations. Similarly, IL-13 was reduced, mainly in cells activated by antiCD3/CD28. By contrast, no significant changes in IFN-γ and IL-4 production were found in any condition assayed. Finally, BPA at 1nM increased the density of dendritic cells expressing CD1a and concomitantly

  20. Human Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cell Function and Dendritic Cell Differentiation Are Affected by Bisphenol-A Exposure.

    PubMed

    Camarca, Alessandra; Gianfrani, Carmen; Ariemma, Fabiana; Cimmino, Ilaria; Bruzzese, Dario; Scerbo, Roberta; Picascia, Stefania; D'Esposito, Vittoria; Beguinot, Francesco; Formisano, Pietro; Valentino, Rossella

    2016-01-01

    Environmental pollutants, including endocrine disruptor chemicals (EDCs), interfere on human health, leading to hormonal, immune and metabolic perturbations. Bisphenol-A (BPA), a main component of polycarbonate plastics, has been receiving increased attention due to its worldwide distribution with a large exposure. In humans, BPA, for its estrogenic activity, may have a role in autoimmunity, inflammatory and allergic diseases. To this aim, we assessed the effect of low BPA doses on functionality of human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), and on in vitro differentiation of dendritic cells from monocytes (mDCs). Fresh peripheral blood samples were obtained from 12 healthy adult volunteers. PBMCs were left unstimulated or were activated with the mitogen phytohemagglutinin (PHA) or the anti-CD3 and anti-CD28 antibodies and incubated in presence or absence of BPA at 0.1 and 1nM concentrations. The immune-modulatory effect of BPA was assessed by evaluating the cell proliferation and the levels of interferon-γ (IFN-γ), interleukin-4 (IL-4), interleukin-10 (IL-10) and interleukin-13 (IL-13) secreted by PBMCs. mDCs were differentiated with IL-4 and GC-CSF with or without BPA and the expression of differentiation/maturation markers (CD11c, CD1a, CD86, HLA-DR) was evaluated by flow cytometry; furthermore, a panel of 27 different cytokines, growth factors and chemokines were assayed in the mDC culture supernatants. PBMCs proliferation significantly increased upon BPA exposure compared to BPA untreated cells. In addition, a significant decrease in IL-10 secretion was observed in PBMCs incubated with BPA, either in unstimulated or mitogen-stimulated cells, and at both 0.1 and 1nM BPA concentrations. Similarly, IL-13 was reduced, mainly in cells activated by antiCD3/CD28. By contrast, no significant changes in IFN-γ and IL-4 production were found in any condition assayed. Finally, BPA at 1nM increased the density of dendritic cells expressing CD1a and concomitantly

  1. Genetic variation of the RASGRF1 regulatory region affects human hippocampus-dependent memory

    PubMed Central

    Barman, Adriana; Assmann, Anne; Richter, Sylvia; Soch, Joram; Schütze, Hartmut; Wüstenberg, Torsten; Deibele, Anna; Klein, Marieke; Richter, Anni; Behnisch, Gusalija; Düzel, Emrah; Zenker, Martin; Seidenbecher, Constanze I.; Schott, Björn H.

    2014-01-01

    The guanine nucleotide exchange factor RASGRF1 is an important regulator of intracellular signaling and neural plasticity in the brain. RASGRF1-deficient mice exhibit a complex phenotype with learning deficits and ocular abnormalities. Also in humans, a genome-wide association study has identified the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs8027411 in the putative transcription regulatory region of RASGRF1 as a risk variant of myopia. Here we aimed to assess whether, in line with the RASGRF1 knockout mouse phenotype, rs8027411 might also be associated with human memory function. We performed computer-based neuropsychological learning experiments in two independent cohorts of young, healthy participants. Tests included the Verbal Learning and Memory Test (VLMT) and the logical memory section of the Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS). Two sub-cohorts additionally participated in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of hippocampus function. 119 participants performed a novelty encoding task that had previously been shown to engage the hippocampus, and 63 subjects participated in a reward-related memory encoding study. RASGRF1 rs8027411 genotype was indeed associated with memory performance in an allele dosage-dependent manner, with carriers of the T allele (i.e., the myopia risk allele) showing better memory performance in the early encoding phase of the VLMT and in the recall phase of the WMS logical memory section. In fMRI, T allele carriers exhibited increased hippocampal activation during presentation of novel images and during encoding of pictures associated with monetary reward. Taken together, our results provide evidence for a role of the RASGRF1 gene locus in hippocampus-dependent memory and, along with the previous association with myopia, point toward pleitropic effects of RASGRF1 genetic variations on complex neural function in humans. PMID:24808846

  2. Genetic Polymorphisms Affect Mouse and Human Trace Amine-Associated Receptor 1 Function

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Xiao; Walter, Nicole A. R.; Harkness, John H.; Neve, Kim A.; Williams, Robert W.; Lu, Lu; Belknap, John K.; Eshleman, Amy J.; Phillips, Tamara J.; Janowsky, Aaron

    2016-01-01

    Methamphetamine (MA) and neurotransmitter precursors and metabolites such as tyramine, octopamine, and β-phenethylamine stimulate the G protein-coupled trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1). TAAR1 has been implicated in human conditions including obesity, schizophrenia, depression, fibromyalgia, migraine, and addiction. Additionally TAAR1 is expressed on lymphocytes and astrocytes involved in inflammation and response to infection. In brain, TAAR1 stimulation reduces synaptic dopamine availability and alters glutamatergic function. TAAR1 is also expressed at low levels in heart, and may regulate cardiovascular tone. Taar1 knockout mice orally self-administer more MA than wild type and are insensitive to its aversive effects. DBA/2J (D2) mice express a non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in Taar1 that does not respond to MA, and D2 mice are predisposed to high MA intake, compared to C57BL/6 (B6) mice. Here we demonstrate that endogenous agonists stimulate the recombinant B6 mouse TAAR1, but do not activate the D2 mouse receptor. Progeny of the B6XD2 (BxD) family of recombinant inbred (RI) strains have been used to characterize the genetic etiology of diseases, but contrary to expectations, BXDs derived 30–40 years ago express only the functional B6 Taar1 allele whereas some more recently derived BXD RI strains express the D2 allele. Data indicate that the D2 mutation arose subsequent to derivation of the original RIs. Finally, we demonstrate that SNPs in human TAAR1 alter its function, resulting in expressed, but functional, sub-functional and non-functional receptors. Our findings are important for identifying a predisposition to human diseases, as well as for developing personalized treatment options. PMID:27031617

  3. Genetic Polymorphisms Affect Mouse and Human Trace Amine-Associated Receptor 1 Function.

    PubMed

    Shi, Xiao; Walter, Nicole A R; Harkness, John H; Neve, Kim A; Williams, Robert W; Lu, Lu; Belknap, John K; Eshleman, Amy J; Phillips, Tamara J; Janowsky, Aaron

    2016-01-01

    Methamphetamine (MA) and neurotransmitter precursors and metabolites such as tyramine, octopamine, and β-phenethylamine stimulate the G protein-coupled trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1). TAAR1 has been implicated in human conditions including obesity, schizophrenia, depression, fibromyalgia, migraine, and addiction. Additionally TAAR1 is expressed on lymphocytes and astrocytes involved in inflammation and response to infection. In brain, TAAR1 stimulation reduces synaptic dopamine availability and alters glutamatergic function. TAAR1 is also expressed at low levels in heart, and may regulate cardiovascular tone. Taar1 knockout mice orally self-administer more MA than wild type and are insensitive to its aversive effects. DBA/2J (D2) mice express a non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in Taar1 that does not respond to MA, and D2 mice are predisposed to high MA intake, compared to C57BL/6 (B6) mice. Here we demonstrate that endogenous agonists stimulate the recombinant B6 mouse TAAR1, but do not activate the D2 mouse receptor. Progeny of the B6XD2 (BxD) family of recombinant inbred (RI) strains have been used to characterize the genetic etiology of diseases, but contrary to expectations, BXDs derived 30-40 years ago express only the functional B6 Taar1 allele whereas some more recently derived BXD RI strains express the D2 allele. Data indicate that the D2 mutation arose subsequent to derivation of the original RIs. Finally, we demonstrate that SNPs in human TAAR1 alter its function, resulting in expressed, but functional, sub-functional and non-functional receptors. Our findings are important for identifying a predisposition to human diseases, as well as for developing personalized treatment options. PMID:27031617

  4. Age and skeletal sites affect BMP-2 responsiveness of human bone marrow stromal cells.

    PubMed

    Osyczka, Anna Maria; Damek-Poprawa, Monika; Wojtowicz, Aleksandra; Akintoye, Sunday O

    2009-01-01

    Bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) contain osteoprogenitors responsive to stimulation by osteogenic growth factors like bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs). When used as grafts, BMSCs can be harvested from different skeletal sites such as axial, appendicular, and orofacial bones, but the lower therapeutic efficacy of BMPs on BMSCs-responsiveness in humans compared to animal models may be due partly to effects of skeletal site and age of donor. We previously reported superior differentiation capacity and osteogenic properties of orofacial BMSCs relative to iliac crest BMSCs in same individuals. This study tested the hypothesis that recombinant human BMP-2 (rhBMP-2) stimulates human BMSCs differently based on age and skeletal site of harvest. Adult maxilla, mandible, and iliac crest BMSCs from same individuals and pediatric iliac crest BMSCs were comparatively assessed for BMP-2 responsiveness under serum-containing and serum-free insulin-supplemented culture conditions. Adult orofacial BMSCs were more BMP-2-responsive than iliac crest BMSCs based on higher gene transcripts of alkaline phosphatase, osteopontin, and osteogenic transcription factors MSX-2 and Osterix in serum-free insulin-containing medium. Pediatric iliac crest BMSCs were more responsive to rhBMP-2 than adult iliac crest BMSCs based on higher expression of alkaline phosphatase and osteopontin in serum-containing medium. Unlike orofacial BMSCs, MSX-2 and Osterix transcripts were similarly expressed by adult and pediatric iliac crest BMSCs in response to rhBMP-2. These data demonstrate that age and skeletal site-specific differences exist in BMSC osteogenic responsiveness to BMP-2 stimulation and suggest that MSX-2 and Osterix may be potential regulatory transcription factors in BMP-mediated osteogenesis of adult orofacial cells. PMID:19637063

  5. Age and Skeletal Sites Affect BMP-2 Responsiveness of Human Bone Marrow Stromal Cells

    PubMed Central

    Osyczka, Anna M.; Damek-Poprawa, Monika; Wojtowicz, Aleksandra; Akintoye, Sunday O.

    2010-01-01

    Bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) contain osteoprogenitors responsive to stimulation by osteogenic growth factors like bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs). When used as grafts, BMSCs can be harvested from different skeletal sites such as axial, appendicular and orofacial bones, but the lower therapeutic efficacy of BMPs on BMSCs-responsiveness in humans compared to animal models may be partly due to effects of skeletal site and age of donor. We previously reported superior differentiation capacity and osteogenic properties of orofacial BMSCs relative to iliac crest BMSCs in same individuals. This study tested the hypothesis that recombinant human BMP-2 (rhBMP-2) stimulates human BMSCs differently based on age and skeletal site of harvest. Adult maxilla, mandible and iliac crest BMSCs from same individuals and pediatric iliac crest BMSCs were comparatively assessed for BMP-2 responsiveness under serum-containing and serum-free insulin-supplemented culture conditions. Adult orofacial BMSCs were more BMP-2-responsive than iliac crest BMSCs based on higher gene transcripts of alkaline phosphatase, osteopontin and osteogenic transcription factors MSX-2 and Osterix in serum-free insulin-containing medium. Pediatric iliac crest BMSCs were more responsive to rhBMP-2 than adult iliac crest BMSCs based on higher expression of alkaline phosphatase and osteopontin in serum-containing medium. Unlike orofacial BMSCs, MSX-2 and Osterix transcripts were similarly expressed by adult and pediatric iliac crest BMSCs in response to rhBMP-2. These data demonstrate that age and skeletal site-specific differences exist in BMSC osteogenic responsiveness to BMP-2 stimulation and suggest that MSX-2 and Osterix may be potential regulatory transcription factors in BMP-mediated osteogenesis of adult orofacial cells. PMID:19637063

  6. Genetic variation of the RASGRF1 regulatory region affects human hippocampus-dependent memory.

    PubMed

    Barman, Adriana; Assmann, Anne; Richter, Sylvia; Soch, Joram; Schütze, Hartmut; Wüstenberg, Torsten; Deibele, Anna; Klein, Marieke; Richter, Anni; Behnisch, Gusalija; Düzel, Emrah; Zenker, Martin; Seidenbecher, Constanze I; Schott, Björn H

    2014-01-01

    The guanine nucleotide exchange factor RASGRF1 is an important regulator of intracellular signaling and neural plasticity in the brain. RASGRF1-deficient mice exhibit a complex phenotype with learning deficits and ocular abnormalities. Also in humans, a genome-wide association study has identified the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs8027411 in the putative transcription regulatory region of RASGRF1 as a risk variant of myopia. Here we aimed to assess whether, in line with the RASGRF1 knockout mouse phenotype, rs8027411 might also be associated with human memory function. We performed computer-based neuropsychological learning experiments in two independent cohorts of young, healthy participants. Tests included the Verbal Learning and Memory Test (VLMT) and the logical memory section of the Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS). Two sub-cohorts additionally participated in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of hippocampus function. 119 participants performed a novelty encoding task that had previously been shown to engage the hippocampus, and 63 subjects participated in a reward-related memory encoding study. RASGRF1 rs8027411 genotype was indeed associated with memory performance in an allele dosage-dependent manner, with carriers of the T allele (i.e., the myopia risk allele) showing better memory performance in the early encoding phase of the VLMT and in the recall phase of the WMS logical memory section. In fMRI, T allele carriers exhibited increased hippocampal activation during presentation of novel images and during encoding of pictures associated with monetary reward. Taken together, our results provide evidence for a role of the RASGRF1 gene locus in hippocampus-dependent memory and, along with the previous association with myopia, point toward pleitropic effects of RASGRF1 genetic variations on complex neural function in humans. PMID:24808846

  7. Perturbation of nucleo-cytoplasmic transport affects size of nucleus and nucleolus in human cells.

    PubMed

    Ganguly, Abira; Bhattacharjee, Chumki; Bhave, Madhura; Kailaje, Vaishali; Jain, Bhawik K; Sengupta, Isha; Rangarajan, Annapoorni; Bhattacharyya, Dibyendu

    2016-03-01

    Size regulation of human cell nucleus and nucleolus are poorly understood subjects. 3D reconstruction of live image shows that the karyoplasmic ratio (KR) increases by 30-80% in transformed cell lines compared to their immortalized counterpart. The attenuation of nucleo-cytoplasmic transport causes the KR value to increase by 30-50% in immortalized cell lines. Nucleolus volumes are significantly increased in transformed cell lines and the attenuation of nucleo-cytoplasmic transport causes a significant increase in the nucleolus volume of immortalized cell lines. A cytosol and nuclear fraction swapping experiment emphasizes the potential role of unknown cytosolic factors in nuclear and nucleolar size regulation. PMID:26813731

  8. Scorched earth: how will changes in ozone deposition caused by drought affect human health and ecosystems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emberson, L. D.; Kitwiroon, N.; Beevers, S.; Büker, P.; Cinderby, S.

    2012-10-01

    This unique study investigates the effect of ozone (O3) deposition on ground level O3 concentrations and subsequent human health and ecosystem risk under hot summer "heat wave" type meteorological events. Under such conditions, extended drought can effectively "turn off" the O3 vegetation sink leading to a substantial increase in ground level O3 concentrations. Two models that have been used for human health (the CMAQ chemical transport model) and ecosystem (the DO3SE O3 deposition model) risk assessment are combined to provide a powerful policy tool capable of novel integrated assessments of O3 risk using methods endorsed by the UNECE Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. This study investigates 2006, a particularly hot and dry year during which a heat wave occurred during the summer across much of the UK and Europe. To understand the influence of variable O3 dry deposition three different simulations were investigated during June and July: (i) actual conditions in 2006; (ii) conditions that assume a perfect vegetation sink for O3 deposition and (iii) conditions that assume an extended drought period that reduces the vegetation sink to a minimum. The risk of O3 to human health, assessed by estimating the number of days during which running 8-h mean O3 concentrations exceeded 100 μg m-3, show that on average across the UK, there is a difference of 16 days exceedance of the threshold between the perfect sink and drought conditions. These average results hide local variation with exceedances reaching as high as 20 days in the East Midlands and Eastern UK. Estimates of acute exposure effects show that O3 removed from the atmosphere through dry deposition during the June and July period would have been responsible for approximately 460 premature deaths. Conversely, reduced O3 dry deposition will decrease the amount of O3 taken up by vegetation and, according to flux-based assessments of vegetation damage, will lead to protection from O3 across the UK

  9. Orphans and Vulnerable Children Affected by Human Immunodeficiency Virus in Sub-Saharan Africa.

    PubMed

    Bryant, Malcolm; Beard, Jennifer

    2016-02-01

    In Sub-Saharan Africa, 15.1 million children have been orphaned because of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). They face significant vulnerabilities, including stigma and discrimination, trauma and stress, illness, food insecurity, poverty, and difficulty accessing education. Millions of additional children who have living parents are vulnerable because their parents or other relatives are infected. This article reviews the current situation of orphans and vulnerable children, explores the underlying determinants of vulnerability and resilience, describes the response by the global community, and highlights the challenges as the HIV pandemic progresses through its fourth decade. PMID:26613693

  10. Phosphoproteomics profiling of human skin fibroblast cells reveals pathways and proteins affected by low doses of ionizing radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Feng; Waters, Katrina M.; Miller, John H.; Gritsenko, Marina A.; Zhao, Rui; Du, Xiuxia; Livesay, Eric A.; Purvine, Samuel O.; Monroe, Matthew E.; Wang, Yingchun; Camp, David G.; Smith, Richard D.; Stenoien, David L.

    2010-11-30

    Background: High doses of ionizing radiation result in biological damage, however the precise relationships between long term health effects, including cancer, and low dose exposures remain poorly understood and are currently extrapolated using high dose exposure data. Identifying the signaling pathways and individual proteins affected at the post-translational level by radiation should shed valuable insight into the molecular mechanisms that regulate dose dependent responses to radiation. Principle Findings: We have identified 6845 unique phosphopeptides (2566 phosphoproteins) from control and irradiated (2 and 50 cGy) primary human skin fibroblasts one hour post-exposure. Dual statistical analyses based on spectral counts and peak intensities identified 287 phosphopeptides (from 231 proteins) and 244 phosphopeptides (from 182 proteins) that varied significantly following exposure to 2 and 50 cGy respectively. This screen identified phosphorylation sites on proteins with known roles in radiation responses including TP53BP1 as well as previously unidentified radiation responsive proteins such as the candidate tumor suppressor SASH1. Bioinformatics analyses suggest that low and high doses of radiation affect both overlapping and unique biological processes and suggest a role of MAP kinase and protein kinase A (PKA) signaling in the radiation response as well as differential regulation of p53 networks at low and high doses of radiation. Conlcusions: Our results represent the most comprehensive analysis of the phosphoproteomes of human primary fibroblasts exposed to multiple doses of ionizing radiation published to date and provides a basis for the systems level identification of biological processes, molecular pathways and individual proteins regulated in a dose dependent manner by ionizing radiation. Further study of these modified proteins and affected networks should help to define the molecular mechanisms that regulate biological responses to radiation at

  11. Infrared radiation affects the mitochondrial pathway of apoptosis in human fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Frank, Sandra; Oliver, Lisa; Lebreton-De Coster, Corinne; Moreau, Carole; Lecabellec, Marie-Thérèse; Michel, Laurence; Vallette, François M; Dubertret, Louis; Coulomb, Bernard

    2004-11-01

    We have previously observed that near-infrared (IR) pre-irradiation protects normal human dermal fibroblasts from ultraviolet (UV) cytotoxicity in vitro. Here, we show that IR pre-irradiation of human fibroblasts inhibited UVB activation of caspase-9 and -3, leading us to study early events in the mitochondrial apoptotic pathway after IR irradiation. IR irradiation led to a partial release of cytochrome c and Smac/Diablo but not apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF). This was accompanied by a slight but transient decrease in the mitochondrial membrane potential (Deltapsim) and by the insertion of Bax into mitochondrial membrane. Early apoptotic events in the mitochondrial pathway thus occurred after IR irradiation despite a lack of caspase-9 and -3 activation. This could be explained by the induction by IR of the expression of heat shock protein Hsp27, which is known to prevent apoptosome assembly. Furthermore, the balance between pro-apoptotic (i.e., Bax) and anti-apoptotic (i.e., Bcl-2 or Bcl-xL) proteins, which was rather pro-apoptotic after IR exposure, became anti-apoptotic 24 h later, suggesting a protective effect. Together, these actions could also contribute to prepare the cell to resist UVB-triggered apoptosis. Finally, isolated rat liver mitochondria-released cytochrome c in response to IR, demonstrating that mitochondria were a primary target of IR radiation. PMID:15482467

  12. MEK inhibition affects STAT3 signaling and invasion in human melanoma cell lines

    PubMed Central

    Vultur, Adina; Villanueva, Jessie; Krepler, Clemens; Rajan, Geena; Chen, Quan; Xiao, Min; Li, Ling; Gimotty, Phyllis A.; Wilson, Melissa; Hayden, James; Keeney, Frederick; Nathanson, Katherine L.; Herlyn, Meenhard

    2013-01-01

    Elevated activity of the MAPK signaling cascade is found in the majority of human melanomas and is known to regulate proliferation, survival, and invasion. Current targeted therapies focus on decreasing the activity of this pathway; however, we do not fully understand how these therapies impact tumor biology, especially given that melanoma is a heterogeneous disease. Using a three-dimensional (3D), collagen-embedded spheroid melanoma model, we observed that MEK and BRAF inhibitors can increase the invasive potential of approximately 20% of human melanoma cell lines. The invasive cell lines displayed increased receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK) activity and activation of the Src/FAK/STAT3 signaling axis, also associated with increased cell-to-cell adhesion and cadherin engagement following MEK inhibition. Targeting various RTKs, Src, FAK, and STAT3 with small molecule inhibitors in combination with a MEK inhibitor prevented the invasive phenotype, but only STAT3 inhibition caused cell death in the 3D context. We further show that STAT3 signaling is induced in BRAF-inhibitor resistant cells. Our findings suggest that MEK and BRAF inhibitors can induce STAT3 signaling, causing potential adverse effects such as increased invasion. We also provide the rationale for the combined targeting of the MAPK pathway along with inhibitors of RTKs, SRC, or STAT3 to counteract STAT3-mediated resistance phenotypes. PMID:23624919

  13. Disrupting Mitochondrial–Nuclear Coevolution Affects OXPHOS Complex I Integrity and Impacts Human Health

    PubMed Central

    Gershoni, Moran; Levin, Liron; Ovadia, Ofer; Toiw, Yasmin; Shani, Naama; Dadon, Sara; Barzilai, Nir; Bergman, Aviv; Atzmon, Gil; Wainstein, Julio; Tsur, Anat; Nijtmans, Leo; Glaser, Benjamin; Mishmar, Dan

    2014-01-01

    The mutation rate of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which is higher by an order of magnitude as compared with the nuclear genome, enforces tight mitonuclear coevolution to maintain mitochondrial activities. Interruption of such coevolution plays a role in interpopulation hybrid breakdown, speciation events, and disease susceptibility. Previously, we found an elevated amino acid replacement rate and positive selection in the nuclear DNA-encoded oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) complex I subunit NDUFC2, a phenomenon important for the direct interaction of NDUFC2 with the mtDNA-encoded complex I subunit ND4. This finding underlines the importance of mitonuclear coevolution to physical interactions between mtDNA and nuclear DNA-encoded factors. Nevertheless, it remains unclear whether this interaction is important for the stability and activity of complex I. Here, we show that siRNA silencing of NDUFC2 reduced growth of human D-407 retinal pigment epithelial cells, significantly diminished mitochondrial membrane potential, and interfered with complex I integrity. Moreover, site-directed mutagenesis of a positively selected amino acid in NDUFC2 significantly interfered with the interaction of NDUFC2 with its mtDNA-encoded partner ND4. Finally, we show that a genotype combination involving this amino acid (NDUFC2 residue 46) and the mtDNA haplogroup HV likely altered susceptibility to type 2 diabetes mellitus in Ashkenazi Jews. Therefore, mitonuclear coevolution is important for maintaining mitonuclear factor interactions, OXPHOS, and for human health. PMID:25245408

  14. Disrupting mitochondrial-nuclear coevolution affects OXPHOS complex I integrity and impacts human health.

    PubMed

    Gershoni, Moran; Levin, Liron; Ovadia, Ofer; Toiw, Yasmin; Shani, Naama; Dadon, Sara; Barzilai, Nir; Bergman, Aviv; Atzmon, Gil; Wainstein, Julio; Tsur, Anat; Nijtmans, Leo; Glaser, Benjamin; Mishmar, Dan

    2014-10-01

    The mutation rate of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), which is higher by an order of magnitude as compared with the nuclear genome, enforces tight mitonuclear coevolution to maintain mitochondrial activities. Interruption of such coevolution plays a role in interpopulation hybrid breakdown, speciation events, and disease susceptibility. Previously, we found an elevated amino acid replacement rate and positive selection in the nuclear DNA-encoded oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) complex I subunit NDUFC2, a phenomenon important for the direct interaction of NDUFC2 with the mtDNA-encoded complex I subunit ND4. This finding underlines the importance of mitonuclear coevolution to physical interactions between mtDNA and nuclear DNA-encoded factors. Nevertheless, it remains unclear whether this interaction is important for the stability and activity of complex I. Here, we show that siRNA silencing of NDUFC2 reduced growth of human D-407 retinal pigment epithelial cells, significantly diminished mitochondrial membrane potential, and interfered with complex I integrity. Moreover, site-directed mutagenesis of a positively selected amino acid in NDUFC2 significantly interfered with the interaction of NDUFC2 with its mtDNA-encoded partner ND4. Finally, we show that a genotype combination involving this amino acid (NDUFC2 residue 46) and the mtDNA haplogroup HV likely altered susceptibility to type 2 diabetes mellitus in Ashkenazi Jews. Therefore, mitonuclear coevolution is important for maintaining mitonuclear factor interactions, OXPHOS, and for human health. PMID:25245408

  15. NUTRIENT TRANSPORT IN HUMAN ANNULUS FIBROSUS IS AFFECTED BY COMPRESSIVE STRAIN AND ANISOTROPY

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Alicia R.; Yuan, Tai-Yi; Huang, Chun-Yuh; Brown, Mark D.; Gu, Wei Yong

    2012-01-01

    The avascular intervertebral disc (IVD) receives nutrition via transport from surrounding vasculature; poor nutrition is believed to be a main cause of disc degeneration. In this study, we investigated the effects of mechanical deformation and anisotropy on the transport of two important nutrients – oxygen and glucose – in human annulus fibrosus (AF). The diffusivities of oxygen and glucose were measured under three levels of uniaxial confined compression – 0%, 10%, and 20% – and in three directions – axial, circumferential, and radial. The glucose partition coefficient was also measured at three compression levels. Results for glucose and oxygen diffusivity in AF ranged from 4.46×10−7 to 9.77×10−6 cm2/s and were comparable to previous studies; the glucose partition coefficient ranged from 0.71 to 0.82 and was also similar to previous results. Transport properties were found to decrease with increasing deformation, likely caused by fluid exudation during tissue compression and reduction in pore size. Furthermore, diffusivity in the radial direction was lower than in the axial or circumferential directions, indicating that nutrient transport in human AF is anisotropic. This behavior is likely a consequence of the layered structure and unique collagen architecture of AF tissue. These findings are important for better understanding nutritional supply in IVD and related disc degeneration. PMID:22669503

  16. A preliminary analysis of human factors affecting the recognition accuracy of a discrete word recognizer for C3 systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yellen, H. W.

    1983-03-01

    Literature pertaining to Voice Recognition abounds with information relevant to the assessment of transitory speech recognition devices. In the past, engineering requirements have dictated the path this technology followed. But, other factors do exist that influence recognition accuracy. This thesis explores the impact of Human Factors on the successful recognition of speech, principally addressing the differences or variability among users. A Threshold Technology T-600 was used for a 100 utterance vocubalary to test 44 subjects. A statistical analysis was conducted on 5 generic categories of Human Factors: Occupational, Operational, Psychological, Physiological and Personal. How the equipment is trained and the experience level of the speaker were found to be key characteristics influencing recognition accuracy. To a lesser extent computer experience, time or week, accent, vital capacity and rate of air flow, speaker cooperativeness and anxiety were found to affect overall error rates.

  17. Keeping Pace with Your Eating: Visual Feedback Affects Eating Rate in Humans.

    PubMed

    Wilkinson, Laura L; Ferriday, Danielle; Bosworth, Matthew L; Godinot, Nicolas; Martin, Nathalie; Rogers, Peter J; Brunstrom, Jeffrey M

    2016-01-01

    Deliberately eating at a slower pace promotes satiation and eating quickly has been associated with a higher body mass index. Therefore, understanding factors that affect eating rate should be given high priority. Eating rate is affected by the physical/textural properties of a food, by motivational state, and by portion size and palatability. This study explored the prospect that eating rate is also influenced by a hitherto unexplored cognitive process that uses ongoing perceptual estimates of the volume of food remaining in a container to adjust intake during a meal. A 2 (amount seen; 300 ml or 500 ml) x 2 (amount eaten; 300 ml or 500 ml) between-subjects design was employed (10 participants in each condition). In two 'congruent' conditions, the same amount was seen at the outset and then subsequently consumed (300 ml or 500 ml). To dissociate visual feedback of portion size and actual amount consumed, food was covertly added or removed from a bowl using a peristaltic pump. This created two additional 'incongruent' conditions, in which 300 ml was seen but 500 ml was eaten or vice versa. We repeated these conditions using a savoury soup and a sweet dessert. Eating rate (ml per second) was assessed during lunch. After lunch we assessed fullness over a 60-minute period. In the congruent conditions, eating rate was unaffected by the actual volume of food that was consumed (300 ml or 500 ml). By contrast, we observed a marked difference across the incongruent conditions. Specifically, participants who saw 300 ml but actually consumed 500 ml ate at a faster rate than participants who saw 500 ml but actually consumed 300 ml. Participants were unaware that their portion size had been manipulated. Nevertheless, when it disappeared faster or slower than anticipated they adjusted their rate of eating accordingly. This suggests that the control of eating rate involves visual feedback and is not a simple reflexive response to orosensory stimulation. PMID:26828922

  18. Keeping Pace with Your Eating: Visual Feedback Affects Eating Rate in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Bosworth, Matthew L.; Godinot, Nicolas; Martin, Nathalie; Rogers, Peter J.; Brunstrom, Jeffrey M.

    2016-01-01

    Deliberately eating at a slower pace promotes satiation and eating quickly has been associated with a higher body mass index. Therefore, understanding factors that affect eating rate should be given high priority. Eating rate is affected by the physical/textural properties of a food, by motivational state, and by portion size and palatability. This study explored the prospect that eating rate is also influenced by a hitherto unexplored cognitive process that uses ongoing perceptual estimates of the volume of food remaining in a container to adjust intake during a meal. A 2 (amount seen; 300ml or 500ml) x 2 (amount eaten; 300ml or 500ml) between-subjects design was employed (10 participants in each condition). In two ‘congruent’ conditions, the same amount was seen at the outset and then subsequently consumed (300ml or 500ml). To dissociate visual feedback of portion size and actual amount consumed, food was covertly added or removed from a bowl using a peristaltic pump. This created two additional ‘incongruent’ conditions, in which 300ml was seen but 500ml was eaten or vice versa. We repeated these conditions using a savoury soup and a sweet dessert. Eating rate (ml per second) was assessed during lunch. After lunch we assessed fullness over a 60-minute period. In the congruent conditions, eating rate was unaffected by the actual volume of food that was consumed (300ml or 500ml). By contrast, we observed a marked difference across the incongruent conditions. Specifically, participants who saw 300ml but actually consumed 500ml ate at a faster rate than participants who saw 500ml but actually consumed 300ml. Participants were unaware that their portion size had been manipulated. Nevertheless, when it disappeared faster or slower than anticipated they adjusted their rate of eating accordingly. This suggests that the control of eating rate involves visual feedback and is not a simple reflexive response to orosensory stimulation. PMID:26828922

  19. Muscle Fatigue Affects the Interpolated Twitch Technique When Assessed Using Electrically-Induced Contractions in Human and Rat Muscles

    PubMed Central

    Neyroud, Daria; Cheng, Arthur J.; Bourdillon, Nicolas; Kayser, Bengt; Place, Nicolas; Westerblad, Håkan

    2016-01-01

    The interpolated twitch technique (ITT) is the gold standard to assess voluntary activation and central fatigue. Yet, its validity has been questioned. Here we studied how peripheral fatigue can affect the ITT. Repeated contractions at submaximal frequencies were produced by supramaximal electrical stimulations of the human adductor pollicis muscle in vivo and of isolated rat soleus fiber bundles; an extra stimulation pulse was given during contractions to induce a superimposed twitch. Human muscles fatigued by repeated 30-Hz stimulation trains (3 s on–1 s off) showed an ~80% reduction in the superimposed twitch force accompanied by a severely reduced EMG response (M-wave amplitude), which implies action potential failure. Subsequent experiments combined a less intense stimulation protocol (1.5 s on–3 s off) with ischemia to cause muscle fatigue, but which preserved M-wave amplitude. However, the superimposed twitch force still decreased markedly more than the potentiated twitch force; with ITT this would reflect increased “voluntary activation.” In contrast, the superimposed twitch force was relatively spared when a similar protocol was performed in rat soleus bundles. Force relaxation was slowed by >150% in fatigued human muscles, whereas it was unchanged in rat soleus bundles. Accordingly, results similar to those in the human muscle were obtained when relaxation was slowed by cooling the rat soleus muscles. In conclusion, our data demonstrate that muscle fatigue can confound the quantification of central fatigue using the ITT.

  20. I saw where you have been-The topography of human demonstration affects dogs' search patterns and perseverative errors.

    PubMed

    Péter, András; Topál, József; Miklósi, Ádám; Pongrácz, Péter

    2016-04-01

    Performance in object search tasks is not only influenced by the subjects' object permanence ability. For example, ostensive cues of the human manipulating the target markedly affect dogs' choices. However, the interference between the target's location and the spatial cues of the human hiding the object is still unknown. In a five-location visible displacement task, the experimental groups differed in the hiding route of the experimenter. In the 'direct' condition he moved straight towards the actual location, hid the object and returned to the dog. In the 'indirect' conditions, he additionally walked behind each screen before returning. The two 'indirect' conditions differed from each other in that the human either visited the previously baited locations before (proactive interference) or after (retroactive interference) hiding the object. In the 'indirect' groups, dogs' performance was significantly lower than in the 'direct' group, demonstrating that for dogs, in an ostensive context, spatial cues of the hider are as important as the observed location of the target. Based on their incorrect choices, dogs were most attracted to the previously baited locations that the human visited after hiding the object in the actual trial. This underlines the importance of retroactive interference in multiple choice tasks. PMID:26869220

  1. Head-up displays and their automotive application: an overview of human factors issues affecting safety.

    PubMed

    Ward, N J; Parkes, A

    1994-12-01

    In response to the recent innovations to use head-up displays (HUDs) in vehicles, this paper discusses the relevant human factors issues arising from this display format and the potential safety implications. A review is made of the relevant HUD literature, primarily from the aviation field. The primary issues for automotive HUDs relevant to system performance and safety in the driving task involve interference from background scene complexity, system novelty, user perceptual style, cognitive disruption, and perceptual tunnelling. Basic research is necessary to investigate the extent of these issues as well as to resolve fundamental design specifications (e.g. HUD size, shape, placement, information content). It is suggested that the introduction of HUDs into vehicles be carefully considered. This will necessitate not only the reconsideration what constitutes an in-vehicle display, but also what constitutes the information to be conveyed. PMID:7857487

  2. Nef Does Not Affect the Efficiency of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Fusion with Target Cells

    PubMed Central

    Tobiume, Minoru; Lineberger, Janet E.; Lundquist, Christopher A.; Miller, Michael D.; Aiken, Christopher

    2003-01-01

    The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) accessory protein Nef stimulates viral infectivity by an unknown mechanism. Recent studies have suggested that Nef may act by regulating the efficiency of virus entry into cells. Here we provide evidence to the contrary. Using a quantitative assay of HIV-1 virus-cell fusion, we observed equivalent rates and extents of fusion of wild-type and Nef-defective HIV-1 particles with MT-4 cells and CD4-expressing HeLa cells. In studies using soluble CD4 (sCD4) to inhibit infection, wild-type and Nef-defective HIV-1 escaped the sCD4 block with similar kinetics. We conclude that Nef acts at a postentry step in infection, probably by facilitating intracellular transport of the HIV-1 ribonucleoprotein complex. PMID:12970449

  3. A factor in human seminal plasma which affects carnitine accumulation in bovine epididymal sperm.

    PubMed

    Carter, A L; Cho, S H; Bishop, E R; Boldt, J

    1988-05-01

    This study was initiated to determine whether factors are present in human sperm-free seminal plasma (HSP) that regulate the uptake and release of carnitine from sperm. Bovine caput epididymal sperm cells accumulated more carnitine than caudal sperm cells. A significant reduction in carnitine uptake by caput sperm was observed in the presence of HSP from normal subjects, but not from three subjects with reduced motility. A factor has been isolated from HSP that inhibits carnitine uptake by caput sperm and has the following properties: it is nondialyzable, stable to freeze-thawing, soluble in 60% ammonium sulfate, and has an approximate molecular weight of 158 kd. These data are consistent with the existence of a relatively high molecular weight protein in HSP responsible for the preservation of carnitine concentrations in sperm. PMID:3360180

  4. Antibiotics in ingested human blood affect the mosquito microbiota and capacity to transmit malaria

    PubMed Central

    Gendrin, Mathilde; Rodgers, Faye H.; Yerbanga, Rakiswendé S.; Ouédraogo, Jean Bosco; Basáñez, María-Gloria; Cohuet, Anna; Christophides, George K.

    2015-01-01

    Malaria reduction is most efficiently achieved by vector control whereby human populations at high risk of contracting and transmitting the disease are protected from mosquito bites. Here, we identify the presence of antibiotics in the blood of malaria-infected people as a new risk of increasing disease transmission. We show that antibiotics in ingested blood enhance the susceptibility of Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes to malaria infection by disturbing their gut microbiota. This effect is confirmed in a semi-natural setting by feeding mosquitoes with blood of children naturally infected with Plasmodium falciparum. Antibiotic exposure additionally increases mosquito survival and fecundity, which are known to augment vectorial capacity. These findings suggest that malaria transmission may be exacerbated in areas of high antibiotic usage, and that regions targeted by mass drug administration programs against communicable diseases may necessitate increased vector control. PMID:25562286

  5. Does tropicamide affect choroidal blood flow in humans? a laser Doppler flowmetry study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palanisamy, Nithiyanantham; Riva, Charles E.; Rovati, Luigi; Cellini, Mauro; Gizzi, Corrado; Strobbe, Ernesto; Campos, Emilio C.

    2012-03-01

    The measurement of blood flow in the ocular fundus is of scientific and clinical interest. Investigating ocular blood flow in the choroid may be important to understand the pathogenesis of numerous ocular diseases, such as glaucoma or agerelated macular degeneration (AMD). Laser Doppler flowmetry (LDF) was applied to measure relative velocity, volume and flux of red blood cells in the tissues of human eye. Its main application lies in the possibility of assessing alterations in blood flow early in the course of diseases. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effect of pupil dilatation with one drop of 1% tropicamide on blood flow in the foveal region of the choroid of the human fundus. The blood flow parameters were measured in 24 eyes during 30 minutes (one measurement in every 3 minutes) after the application of the drop. Since the Doppler parameters depend on the scattering geometry, which may change as the pupil dilates; an artificial pupil of 4mm in diameter was placed directly in front the eye. Following the administration of tropicamide the mean pupil diameter was increased from 3.29 mm to 8.25 mm (P<0.0001, Paired student t-test). In comparison to the baseline values, the data shows no significant increases were observed in velocity, volume, and flow with 4 mm artificial pupil (0.2%, 1.3%, 0.8% respectively) and a statistically significant increases were observed without artificial pupil (10.7%, 13.9%, 12.8% respectively) following the application of tropicamide.

  6. Age and Gender Affect the Composition of Fungal Population of the Human Gastrointestinal Tract.

    PubMed

    Strati, Francesco; Di Paola, Monica; Stefanini, Irene; Albanese, Davide; Rizzetto, Lisa; Lionetti, Paolo; Calabrò, Antonio; Jousson, Olivier; Donati, Claudio; Cavalieri, Duccio; De Filippo, Carlotta

    2016-01-01

    The fungal component of the human gut microbiota has been neglected for long time due to the low relative abundance of fungi with respect to bacteria, and only recently few reports have explored its composition and dynamics in health or disease. The application of metagenomics methods to the full understanding of fungal communities is currently limited by the under representation of fungal DNA with respect to the bacterial one, as well as by the limited ability to discriminate passengers from colonizers. Here, we investigated the gut mycobiota of a cohort of healthy subjects in order to reduce the gap of knowledge concerning fungal intestinal communities in the healthy status further screening for phenotypical traits that could reflect fungi adaptation to the host. We studied the fecal fungal populations of 111 healthy subjects by means of cultivation on fungal selective media and by amplicon-based ITS1 metagenomics analysis on a subset of 57 individuals. We then characterized the isolated fungi for their tolerance to gastrointestinal (GI) tract-like challenges and their susceptibility to antifungals. A total of 34 different fungal species were isolated showing several phenotypic characteristics associated with intestinal environment such as tolerance to body temperature (37°C), to acidic and oxidative stress, and to bile salts exposure. We found a high frequency of azoles resistance in fungal isolates, with potential and significant clinical impact. Analyses of fungal communities revealed that the human gut mycobiota differs in function of individuals' life stage in a gender-related fashion. The combination of metagenomics and fungal cultivation allowed an in-depth understanding of the fungal intestinal community structure associated to the healthy status and the commensalism-related traits of isolated fungi. We further discussed comparatively the results of sequencing and cultivation to critically evaluate the application of metagenomics-based approaches to

  7. Age and Gender Affect the Composition of Fungal Population of the Human Gastrointestinal Tract

    PubMed Central

    Strati, Francesco; Di Paola, Monica; Stefanini, Irene; Albanese, Davide; Rizzetto, Lisa; Lionetti, Paolo; Calabrò, Antonio; Jousson, Olivier; Donati, Claudio; Cavalieri, Duccio; De Filippo, Carlotta

    2016-01-01

    The fungal component of the human gut microbiota has been neglected for long time due to the low relative abundance of fungi with respect to bacteria, and only recently few reports have explored its composition and dynamics in health or disease. The application of metagenomics methods to the full understanding of fungal communities is currently limited by the under representation of fungal DNA with respect to the bacterial one, as well as by the limited ability to discriminate passengers from colonizers. Here, we investigated the gut mycobiota of a cohort of healthy subjects in order to reduce the gap of knowledge concerning fungal intestinal communities in the healthy status further screening for phenotypical traits that could reflect fungi adaptation to the host. We studied the fecal fungal populations of 111 healthy subjects by means of cultivation on fungal selective media and by amplicon-based ITS1 metagenomics analysis on a subset of 57 individuals. We then characterized the isolated fungi for their tolerance to gastrointestinal (GI) tract-like challenges and their susceptibility to antifungals. A total of 34 different fungal species were isolated showing several phenotypic characteristics associated with intestinal environment such as tolerance to body temperature (37°C), to acidic and oxidative stress, and to bile salts exposure. We found a high frequency of azoles resistance in fungal isolates, with potential and significant clinical impact. Analyses of fungal communities revealed that the human gut mycobiota differs in function of individuals' life stage in a gender-related fashion. The combination of metagenomics and fungal cultivation allowed an in-depth understanding of the fungal intestinal community structure associated to the healthy status and the commensalism-related traits of isolated fungi. We further discussed comparatively the results of sequencing and cultivation to critically evaluate the application of metagenomics-based approaches to

  8. Widow spider envenomation (latrodectism): a worldwide problem.

    PubMed

    Jelinek, G A

    1997-11-01

    The objective of this study was to review widow spider envenomation on a worldwide basis, with an emphasis on regional variability in management, particularly between the United States and Australia. Data sources were the Medline database (1966-1997) for English language references using as key words widow spider, latrodectism, and red back spider, and Mesh headings. Textbooks of toxinology were also used. Studies involving clinical reports and series were selected. The data indicated that envenomation by widow spiders (latrodectism) is common worldwide. Local pain and sweating predominate, in about 25% of cases becoming generalized or developing in remote sites. The mortality in published series varies from 5% to 10%, although these may be overestimates. Australia may have the highest rate of latrodectism in the world. The literature reveals regional disparities in the treatment and outcome of latrodectism. In Australia, intramuscular antivenin has been used liberally for more than 40 years with a very low rate (0.5% to 0.8%) of allergic reactions and no deaths recorded since its introduction. Antivenin is routinely successful in relieving the effects of latrodectism. In the United States, the antivenin is given intravenously, is usually reserved for very severe cases, and the rate of allergic reaction is high (from 9% up to 80% in those skin testing positive). Deaths have been recorded after antivenin. The literature suggests that antivenin to one species of Latrodectus is likely to be effective against other species. The conclusion drawn was that latrodectism is a common envenomation worldwide. There is a strong case for a comparative trial of Australian vs US antivenin in treating latrodectism due to the black widow spider in the United States. PMID:11990169

  9. Worldwide oilfield service, supply and manufacturers directory

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1984-01-01

    Three valuable sections of the Worldwide Oilfield Service, Supply and Manufacturers Diretory give SUPPLY COMPANIES - all companies engaged in wholesale and/or retail sale of products used in all phases of the petroleum industry; SERVICE COMPANIES - included in this section are all companies providing services to any phase of the oil industry such as companies that prepare drilling sites, catering services, equipment haulers, tool rental, mud services, etc.; MANUFACTURING COMPANIES - all companies engaged in the engineering, design and construction of equipment used in the oil industry. Items manufactured might be drilling rigs, pumps, valves, etc.

  10. Xenobiotics that affect oxidative phosphorylation alter differentiation of human adipose-derived stem cells at concentrations that are found in human blood

    PubMed Central

    Llobet, Laura; Toivonen, Janne M.; Montoya, Julio; Ruiz-Pesini, Eduardo; López-Gallardo, Ester

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Adipogenesis is accompanied by differentiation of adipose tissue-derived stem cells to adipocytes. As part of this differentiation, biogenesis of the oxidative phosphorylation system occurs. Many chemical compounds used in medicine, agriculture or other human activities affect oxidative phosphorylation function. Therefore, these xenobiotics could alter adipogenesis. We have analyzed the effects on adipocyte differentiation of some xenobiotics that act on the oxidative phosphorylation system. The tested concentrations have been previously reported in human blood. Our results show that pharmaceutical drugs that decrease mitochondrial DNA replication, such as nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors, or inhibitors of mitochondrial protein synthesis, such as ribosomal antibiotics, diminish adipocyte differentiation and leptin secretion. By contrast, the environmental chemical pollutant tributyltin chloride, which inhibits the ATP synthase of the oxidative phosphorylation system, can promote adipocyte differentiation and leptin secretion, leading to obesity and metabolic syndrome as postulated by the obesogen hypothesis. PMID:26398948

  11. Position and length of fatty acids strongly affect receptor selectivity pattern of human pancreatic polypeptide analogues.

    PubMed

    Mäde, Veronika; Bellmann-Sickert, Kathrin; Kaiser, Anette; Meiler, Jens; Beck-Sickinger, Annette G

    2014-11-01

    Pancreatic polypeptide (PP) is a satiety-inducing gut hormone targeting predominantly the Y4 receptor within the neuropeptide Y multiligand/multireceptor family. Palmitoylated PP-based ligands have already been reported to exert prolonged satiety-inducing effects in animal models. Here, we suggest that other lipidation sites and different fatty acid chain lengths may affect receptor selectivity and metabolic stability. Activity tests revealed significantly enhanced potency of long fatty acid conjugates on all four Y receptors with a preference of position 22 over 30 at Y1 , Y2 and Y5 receptors. Improved Y receptor selectivity was observed for two short fatty acid analogues. Moreover, [K(30)(E-Prop)]hPP2-36 (15) displayed enhanced stability in blood plasma and liver homogenates. Thus, short chain lipidation of hPP at key residue 30 is a promising approach for anti-obesity therapy because of maintained selectivity and a sixfold increased plasma half-life. PMID:25156249

  12. Opioid and nicotine receptors affect growth regulation of human lung cancer cell lines

    SciTech Connect

    Maneckjee, R.; Minna, J.D. Uniformed Services Univ. of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD )

    1990-05-01

    Using specific radioactively-labeled ligands, the authors find that lung cancer cell lines of diverse histologic types express multiple, high-affinity membrane receptors for {mu}, {delta}, and {kappa} opioid agonists and for nicotine and {alpha}-bungarotoxin. These receptors are biologically active because cAMP levels decreased in lung cancer cells after opioid and nicotine application. Nicotine at concentrations found in the blood of smokers had no effect on in vitro lung cancer cell growth, whereas {mu}, {delta}, and {kappa} opioid agonists at low concentrations inhibited lung cancer growth in vitro. They also found that lung cancer cells expressed various combinations of immunoreactive opioid peptides ({beta}-endorphin, enkephalin, or dynorphin), suggesting the participation of opioids in a negative autocrine loop or tumor-suppressing system. Due to the almost universal exposure of patients with lung cancer to nicotine, they tested whether nicotine affected the response of lung cancer cell growth to opioids and found that nicotine at concentrations of 100-200 nM partially or totally reversed opioid-induced growth inhibition in 9/14 lung cancer cell lines. These in vitro results for lung cancer cells suggest that opioids could function as part of a tumor suppressor system and that nicotine can function to circumvent this system in the pathogenesis of lung cancer.

  13. Human CalDAG-GEFI gene (RASGRP2) mutation affects platelet function and causes severe bleeding

    PubMed Central

    Canault, Matthias; Ghalloussi, Dorsaf; Grosdidier, Charlotte; Guinier, Marie; Perret, Claire; Chelghoum, Nadjim; Germain, Marine; Raslova, Hana; Peiretti, Franck; Morange, Pierre E.; Saut, Noemie; Pillois, Xavier; Nurden, Alan T.; Cambien, François; Pierres, Anne; van den Berg, Timo K.; Kuijpers, Taco W.; Tregouet, David-Alexandre

    2014-01-01

    The nature of an inherited platelet disorder was investigated in three siblings affected by severe bleeding. Using whole-exome sequencing, we identified the culprit mutation (cG742T) in the RAS guanyl-releasing protein-2 (RASGRP2) gene coding for calcium- and DAG-regulated guanine exchange factor-1 (CalDAG-GEFI). Platelets from individuals carrying the mutation present a reduced ability to activate Rap1 and to perform proper αIIbβ3 integrin inside-out signaling. Expression of CalDAG-GEFI mutant in HEK293T cells abolished Rap1 activation upon stimulation. Nevertheless, the PKC- and ADP-dependent pathways allow residual platelet activation in the absence of functional CalDAG-GEFI. The mutation impairs the platelet’s ability to form thrombi under flow and spread normally as a consequence of reduced Rac1 GTP-binding. Functional deficiencies were confined to platelets and megakaryocytes with no leukocyte alteration. This contrasts with the phenotype seen in type III leukocyte adhesion deficiency caused by the absence of kindlin-3. Heterozygous did not suffer from bleeding and have normal platelet aggregation; however, their platelets mimicked homozygous ones by failing to undergo normal adhesion under flow and spreading. Rescue experiments on cultured patient megakaryocytes corrected the functional deficiency after transfection with wild-type RASGRP2. Remarkably, the presence of a single normal allele is sufficient to prevent bleeding, making CalDAG-GEFI a novel and potentially safe therapeutic target to prevent thrombosis. PMID:24958846

  14. Factors affecting the aluminium content of human femoral head and neck.

    PubMed

    Zioła-Frankowska, Anetta; Dąbrowski, Mikołaj; Kubaszewski, Łukasz; Rogala, Piotr; Frankowski, Marcin

    2015-11-01

    Tissues for the study were obtained intraoperatively during hip replacement procedures from 96 patients. In all the cases, the indication for this treatment was primary or secondary degenerative changes in the hip joint. The subject of the study was the head and neck of the femur, resected in situ. Aluminium concentrations measured in femoral head and neck samples from patients aged between 25 and 91 were varied. Statistical methods were applied to determine the variations in relation to the parameters from the background survey. Significant differences in the aluminium content of femoral head samples were observed between patients under and over 60 years of age. Based on the results, it was confirmed that the aluminium accumulates in bones over a lifetime. The study showed that the content of aluminium in the head and neck of the femur depends on the factors such as: type of medicines taken, contact with chemicals at work, differences in body anatomy and sex. The study on the levels of aluminium in bones and the factors affecting its concentration is a valuable source of information for further research on the role of aluminium in bone diseases. Based on the investigations, it was found that the GF-AAS technique is the best analytical tool for routine analysis of aluminium in complex matrix samples. The use of femoral heads in the investigations was approved by the Bioethics Committee of the University of Medical Sciences in Poznań (Poland). PMID:26341598

  15. The theoretical underpinnings of affective temperaments: implications for evolutionary foundations of bipolar disorder and human nature.

    PubMed

    Akiskal, Kareen K; Akiskal, Hagop S

    2005-03-01

    We sketch out putative evolutionary roles for affective temperaments within the theoretical framework of mood disorders conceptualized as extremes in an oligogenic model of inheritance, whereby the constituent traits in their dilute phenotypes confer adaptive advantages to individuals and/or their social group. Depressive traits, among other functions, would subserve sensitivity to the suffering of other members of the species, overlapping with those of the generalized anxious temperament, thereby enhancing the survival of not only kin but also other conspecifics. The pursuit of romantic opportunities in cyclothymia suggests that it may have evolved as a mechanism in reproductive success; cyclothymics' creative bent in poetry, music, painting, cooking or fashion design (among men, in particular) also appears useful for sexual seduction. Hyperthymic traits would lend distinct advantages in leadership, exploration, territoriality and mating. These are just some of the possibilities of the rich and complex temperamental traits subserving bipolarity within an evolutionary framework. We test selected aspects of these hypotheses with the use of correlations between the constituent traits of the Temperament Evaluation of Memphis, Pisa, Paris and San Diego (TEMPS) and correlations between the TEMPS and the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI). Such data support the counterbalancing protective influence of harm avoidance on the risk-taking behavior of cyclothymic individuals, in both men and women. Finally, we outline a hypothesis on the evolutionary function of anxious-depressive traits for women. PMID:15780693

  16. H2O2-Induced Oxidative Stress Affects SO4= Transport in Human Erythrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Morabito, Rossana; Romano, Orazio; La Spada, Giuseppa; Marino, Angela

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present investigation was to verify the effect of H2O2-induced oxidative stress on SO4= uptake through Band 3 protein, responsible for Cl-/HCO3- as well as for cell membrane deformability, due to its cross link with cytoskeletal proteins. The role of cytoplasmic proteins binding to Band 3 protein has been also considered by assaying H2O2 effects on hemoglobin-free resealed ghosts of erythrocytes. Oxidative conditions were induced by 30 min exposure of human erythrocytes to different H2O2 concentrations (10 to 300 μM), with or without GSH (glutathione, 2 mM) or curcumin (10 μM), compounds with proved antioxidant properties. Since SO4= influx through Band 3 protein is slower and better controllable than Cl- or HCO3- exchange, the rate constant for SO4= uptake was measured to prove anion transport efficiency, while MDA (malondialdehyde) levels and –SH groups were estimated to quantify the effect of oxidative stress. H2O2 induced a significant decrease in rate constant for SO4= uptake at both 100 and 300 μM H2O2. This reduction, observed in erythrocytes but not in resealed ghosts and associated to increase in neither MDA levels nor in –SH groups, was impaired by both curcumin and GSH, whereas only curcumin effectively restored H2O2-induced changes in erythrocytes shape. Our results show that: i) 30 min exposure to 300 μM H2O2 reduced SO4= uptake in human erythrocytes; ii) oxidative damage was revealed by the reduction in rate constant for SO4= uptake, but not by MDA or –SH groups levels; iii) the damage was produced via cytoplasmic components which cross link with Band 3 protein; iv) the natural antioxidant curcumin may be useful in protecting erythrocytes from oxidative injury; v) SO4= uptake through Band 3 protein may be reasonably suggested as a tool to monitor erythrocytes function under oxidative conditions possibly deriving from alcohol consumption, use of drugs, radiographic contrast media administration, hyperglicemia or

  17. H2O2-Induced Oxidative Stress Affects SO4= Transport in Human Erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Morabito, Rossana; Romano, Orazio; La Spada, Giuseppa; Marino, Angela

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the present investigation was to verify the effect of H2O2-induced oxidative stress on SO4= uptake through Band 3 protein, responsible for Cl-/HCO3- as well as for cell membrane deformability, due to its cross link with cytoskeletal proteins. The role of cytoplasmic proteins binding to Band 3 protein has been also considered by assaying H2O2 effects on hemoglobin-free resealed ghosts of erythrocytes. Oxidative conditions were induced by 30 min exposure of human erythrocytes to different H2O2 concentrations (10 to 300 μM), with or without GSH (glutathione, 2 mM) or curcumin (10 μM), compounds with proved antioxidant properties. Since SO4= influx through Band 3 protein is slower and better controllable than Cl- or HCO3- exchange, the rate constant for SO4= uptake was measured to prove anion transport efficiency, while MDA (malondialdehyde) levels and -SH groups were estimated to quantify the effect of oxidative stress. H2O2 induced a significant decrease in rate constant for SO4= uptake at both 100 and 300 μM H2O2. This reduction, observed in erythrocytes but not in resealed ghosts and associated to increase in neither MDA levels nor in -SH groups, was impaired by both curcumin and GSH, whereas only curcumin effectively restored H2O2-induced changes in erythrocytes shape. Our results show that: i) 30 min exposure to 300 μM H2O2 reduced SO4= uptake in human erythrocytes; ii) oxidative damage was revealed by the reduction in rate constant for SO4= uptake, but not by MDA or -SH groups levels; iii) the damage was produced via cytoplasmic components which cross link with Band 3 protein; iv) the natural antioxidant curcumin may be useful in protecting erythrocytes from oxidative injury; v) SO4= uptake through Band 3 protein may be reasonably suggested as a tool to monitor erythrocytes function under oxidative conditions possibly deriving from alcohol consumption, use of drugs, radiographic contrast media administration, hyperglicemia or neurodegenerative

  18. Bottom-up and top-down human impacts interact to affect a protected coastal Chilean marsh.

    PubMed

    Fariña, José M; He, Qiang; Silliman, Brian R; Bertness, Mark D

    2016-03-01

    Many ecosystems, even in protected areas, experience multiple anthropogenic impacts. While anthropogenic modification of bottom-up (e.g., eutrophication) and top-down (e.g., livestock grazing) forcing often co-occurs, whether these factors counteract or have additive or synergistic effects on ecosystems is poorly understood. In a Chilean bio-reserve, we examined the interactive impacts of eutrophication and illegal livestock grazing on plant growth with a 4-yr fertilization by cattle exclusion experiment. Cattle grazing generally decreased plant biomass, but had synergistic, additive, and antagonistic interactions with fertilization in the low, middle, and high marsh zones, respectively. In the low marsh, fertilization increased plant biomass by 112%, cattle grazing decreased it by 96%, and together they decreased plant biomass by 77%. In the middle marsh, fertilization increased plant biomass by 47%, cattle grazing decreased it by 37%, and together they did not affect plant biomass. In the high marsh, fertilization and cattle grazing decreased plant biomass by 81% and 92%, respectively, but together they increased plant biomass by 42%. These interactions were also found to be species specific. Different responses of plants to fertilization and cattle grazing were likely responsible for these variable interactions. Thus, common bottom-up and top-down human impacts can interact in different ways to affect communities even within a single ecosystem. Incorporating this knowledge into conservation actions will improve ecosystem management in a time when ecosystems are increasingly challenged by multiple interacting human impacts. PMID:27197391

  19. Additive effects of affective arousal and top-down attention on the event-related brain responses to human bodies.

    PubMed

    Hietanen, Jari K; Kirjavainen, Ilkka; Nummenmaa, Lauri

    2014-12-01

    The early visual event-related 'N170 response' is sensitive to human body configuration and it is enhanced to nude versus clothed bodies. We tested whether the N170 response as well as later EPN and P3/LPP responses to nude bodies reflect the effect of increased arousal elicited by these stimuli, or top-down allocation of object-based attention to the nude bodies. Participants saw pictures of clothed and nude bodies and faces. In each block, participants were asked to direct their attention towards stimuli from a specified target category while ignoring others. Object-based attention did not modulate the N170 amplitudes towards attended stimuli; instead N170 response was larger to nude bodies compared to stimuli from other categories. Top-down attention and affective arousal had additive effects on the EPN and P3/LPP responses reflecting later processing stages. We conclude that nude human bodies have a privileged status in the visual processing system due to the affective arousal they trigger. PMID:25224182

  20. Characterization of a cellular inhibitory activity affecting the human autologous mixed lymphocyte reaction

    SciTech Connect

    Haynes, M.K.

    1987-01-01

    The human autologous mixed lymphocyte reaction, peripheral blood T cells are stimulated to proliferate when co-cultured with irradiated, autologous, non-T cells was studied. ({sup 3}H)-thymidine uptake was maximal on day 7 and observable on day 9. Non-adherent and adherent fractions of non-T population and lectin-activated T cell blasts contributed. Unseparated non-T stimulator cells were used. Autologous T cells, when added as irradiated third party cells, reduced AMLR proliferative responses. Depletion of Fc IgG receptor-bearing cells (T{gamma}) from T cell population by (a) IgG-sensitized ox erythrocyte rosetting (EA-rosettes) or (b) adsorption of the T{gamma} cells onto a Sepharose 6MB {approximately} BSA/anti-BSA immune complex column resulted in enhanced AMLR proliferation not attributed solely to an increase in CD8+ AMLR responder cell phenotype. Isolated T{gamma} populations exhibited a reversed helper/suppressor phenotype containing HLA DR+ and CD8+ cells. Dual labeling studies demonstrated 7-24% of CD8+ cells expressed DR antigens. After separation, AMLR proliferative capacity was localized in T-depleted population.

  1. Nanofiber alignment and direction of mechanical strain affect the ECM production of human ACL fibroblast.

    PubMed

    Lee, Chang Hun; Shin, Ho Joon; Cho, In Hee; Kang, Young-Mi; Kim, In Ae; Park, Ki-Dong; Shin, Jung-Woog

    2005-04-01

    The effects of fiber alignment and direction of mechanical stimuli on the ECM generation of human ligament fibroblast (HLF) were assessed. The nanofiber matrix was fabricated using electrospinning technique. To align the nanofibers, a rotating target was used. The HLFs on the aligned nanofibers were spindle-shaped and oriented in the direction of the nanofibers. The degree of ECM production was evaluated by comparing the amount of collagen on aligned and randomly oriented structures. Significantly more collagen was synthesized on aligned nanofiber sheets, although the proliferation did not differ significantly. This suggests that the spindle-shape observable in intact ligaments is preferable in producing ECM. To evaluate the effect of strain direction on the ECM production, HLFs were seeded on parallel aligned, vertically aligned to the strain direction, and randomly oriented nanofiber sheets attached to Flexcell plates. After a 48-h culture, 5% uniaxial strain was applied for 24h at a frequency of 12 cycles/min. The amounts of collagen produced were measured 2 days after halting the strain application. The HLFs were more sensitive to strain in the longitudinal direction. In conclusion, the aligned nanofiber scaffold used in this study constitutes a promising base material for tissue-engineered ligament in that it provides more preferable biomimetic structure, along with proper mechanical environment. PMID:15475056

  2. Human erythrocytes are affected in vitro by extracts of Ugni molinae leaves.

    PubMed

    Suwalsky, M; Orellana, P; Avello, M; Villena, F; Sotomayor, C P

    2006-08-01

    Ugni molinae Turcz, also known as "Murtilla", is a plant that grows in the south of Chile. Infusions of their leaves have long been used in traditional native herbal medicine. The chemical composition of the leaves indicates the presence of polyphenols, which have antioxidant properties. In order to evaluate the mechanisms of their antioxidant properties and the toxicity of the aqueous extracts of leaves, the extracts were induced to interact with human red cells, their isolated unsealed membranes (IUM) and large unilamellar vesicles (LUV) of dimyristoylphosphatidyltidylcholine (DMPC), representative of phospholipid classes located in the outer monolayer of the erythrocyte membrane. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) observations indicated that the extracts achieved a significant alteration in the shape of the erythrocytes as they changed their discoid shape to echinocytes. According to the bilayer couple hypothesis, the shape change indicates that the polyphenols were located in the outer moiety of the red cell membrane. This conclusion was confirmed by the fluorescence experiments performed in IUM and DMPC LUV. In fact, the extracts produced slight initial increases followed by sharp decreases at higher concentrations in the anisotropy and general polarization parameters. These results imply that the extracts induced structural perturbations in the acyl chain and polar group packing arrangements of the erythrocyte IUM and DMPC LUV lipid bilayers: first ordering and afterwards disordering them as the extract concentration increased. PMID:16716480

  3. Effect of tetracycline HCl on periodontally-affected human root surfaces.

    PubMed

    Trombelli, L; Scabbia, A; Zangari, F; Griselli, A; Wikesjö, U M; Calura, G

    1995-08-01

    Scanning electron microscopy was used to evaluate surface characteristics of periodontitis-exposed instrumented human cementum and dentin surfaces following topical application of tetracycline HCl (TTC). Specimens were randomly assigned to application of sterile saline for 1 minute (control); TTC (10 mg/ml) for 1 minute and 4 minutes, respectively; and TTC (100 mg/ml) for 1 minute and 4 minutes, respectively. Solutions were applied with a cotton pellet using a burnishing technique. Control specimens exhibited an amorphous irregular surface smear layer. TTC treatment of cementum for 1 minute resulted in a relatively debris-free, nonhomogeneous surface. The 4-minute application resulted in a surface exhibiting a densely fibrillar, mat-like texture. Dentin specimens conditioned for 1 minute showed a smooth surface with many tubule openings partially occluded by debris. The 4-minute treatment exposed a 3-dimensional network of intertubular and peritubular collagen fibrils. No consistent morphologic differences were observed between cementum or dentin specimens treated with TTC at concentrations of 10 and 100 mg/ml, respectively. The results suggest that topical application of TTC produces morphologic alterations of periodontitis-exposed cementum and dentin that appear related to application interval rather than concentration of the drug. PMID:7473011

  4. 902 MHz mobile phone does not affect short term memory in humans.

    PubMed

    Haarala, Christian; Ek, Maria; Björnberg, Linda; Laine, Matti; Revonsuo, Antti; Koivisto, Mika; Hämäläinen, Heikki

    2004-09-01

    We studied the effects of an electromagnetic field (EMF) as emitted by a 902 MHz mobile phone on human short term memory. This study was a replication with methodological improvements to our previous study. The improvements included multi-centre testing and a double blind design. A total of 64 subjects (32 men) in two independent laboratories performed a short term memory task (n-back) which poses a varying memory load (0-3 items) on the subjects' memory. They performed the task twice, once each under EMF and sham exposure. Reaction times (RTs) and accuracy of the responses were recorded. The order of exposure and memory load conditions were counterbalanced across subjects and gender. There were no statistically significant differences in performance between the two laboratories. We could not replicate our previous results: the EMF had no effect on RTs or on the accuracy of the subjects' answers. The inability to replicate previous findings could have been caused by lack of actual EMF effects or the magnitude of effects being at the sensitivity threshold of the test used. PMID:15300731

  5. No fear no risk! Human risk behavior is affected by chemosensory anxiety signals.

    PubMed

    Haegler, Katrin; Zernecke, Rebekka; Kleemann, Anna Maria; Albrecht, Jessica; Pollatos, Olga; Brückmann, Hartmut; Wiesmann, Martin

    2010-11-01

    An important aspect of cognitive functioning is decision-making, which depends on the correct interpretation of emotional processes. High trait anxiety has been associated with increased risk taking behavior in decision-making tasks. An interesting fact is that anxiety and anxiety-related chemosignals as well as decision-making share similar regions of neuronal activation. In order to ascertain if chemosensory anxiety signals have similar effects on risk taking behavior of healthy participants as high trait anxiety we used a novel computerized decision-making task, called Haegler's Risk Game (HRG). This task measures risk taking behavior based on contingencies and can be played repeatedly without a learning effect. To obtain chemosensory signals the sweat of 21 male donors was collected in a high rope course (anxiety condition). For the chemosensory control condition sweat was collected during an ergometer workout (exercise condition). In a double-blind study, 30 healthy recipients (16 females) had to play HRG while being exposed to sweat samples or empty control samples (control condition) in three sessions of randomized order. Comparison of the risk taking behavior of the three conditions showed significantly higher risk taking behavior in participants for the most risky choices during the anxiety condition compared to the control conditions. Additionally, recipients showed significantly higher latency before making their decision in the most risky choices during the anxiety condition. This experiment gives evidence that chemosensory anxiety signals are communicated between humans thereby increasing participants' risk taking behavior. PMID:20875438

  6. Purification and characterization of factors produced by Aspergillus fumigatus which affect human ciliated respiratory epithelium.

    PubMed Central

    Amitani, R; Taylor, G; Elezis, E N; Llewellyn-Jones, C; Mitchell, J; Kuze, F; Cole, P J; Wilson, R

    1995-01-01

    The mechanisms by which Aspergillus fumigatus colonizes the respiratory mucosa are unknown. Culture filtrates of eight of nine clinical isolates of A. fumigatus slowed ciliary beat frequency and damaged human respiratory epithelium in vitro. These changes appeared to occur concurrently. Culture filtrates of two clinical isolates of Candida albicans had no effect on ciliated epithelium. We have purified and characterized cilioinhibitory factors of a clinical isolate of A. fumigatus. The cilioinhibitory activity was heat labile, reduced by dialysis, and partially extractable into chloroform. The activity was associated with both high- and low-molecular-weight factors, as determined by gel filtration on Sephadex G-50. A low-molecular-weight cilioinhibitory factor was further purified by reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatography and shown by mass spectrometry to be gliotoxin, a known metabolite of A. fumigatus. Gliotoxin significantly slowed ciliary beat frequency in association with epithelial damage at concentrations above 0.2 microgram/ml; other Aspergillus toxins, i.e., fumagillin and helvolic acid, were also cilioinhibitory but at much higher concentrations. High-molecular-weight (> or = 35,000 and 25,000) cilioinhibitory materials had neither elastolytic nor proteolytic activity and remain to be identified. Thus, A. fumigatus produces a number of biologically active substances which slow ciliary beating and damage epithelium and which may influence colonization of the airways. PMID:7543879

  7. Lip colour affects perceived sex typicality and attractiveness of human faces.

    PubMed

    Stephen, Ian D; McKeegan, Angela M

    2010-01-01

    The luminance contrast between facial features and facial skin is greater in women than in men, and women's use of make-up enhances this contrast. In black-and-white photographs, increased luminance contrast enhances femininity and attractiveness in women's faces, but reduces masculinity and attractiveness in men's faces. In Caucasians, much of the contrast between the lips and facial skin is in redness. Red lips have been considered attractive in women in geographically and temporally diverse cultures, possibly because they mimic vasodilation associated with sexual arousal. Here, we investigate the effects of lip luminance and colour contrast on the attractiveness and sex typicality (masculinity/femininity) of human faces. In a Caucasian sample, we allowed participants to manipulate the colour of the lips in colour-calibrated face photographs along CIELab L* (light--dark), a* (red--green), and b* (yellow--blue) axes to enhance apparent attractiveness and sex typicality. Participants increased redness contrast to enhance femininity and attractiveness of female faces, but reduced redness contrast to enhance masculinity of men's faces. Lip blueness was reduced more in female than male faces. Increased lightness contrast enhanced the attractiveness of both sexes, and had little effect on perceptions of sex typicality. The association between lip colour contrast and attractiveness in women's faces may be attributable to its association with oxygenated blood perfusion indicating oestrogen levels, sexual arousal, and cardiac and respiratory health. PMID:20942361

  8. Ethanol affects hepatitis C pathogenesis: humanized SCID Alb-uPA mouse model.

    PubMed

    Osna, Natalia A; Kharbanda, Kusum K; Sun, Yimin; Simpson, Ronda L; Poluektova, Larisa E; Ganesan, Murali; Wisecarver, James L; Mercer, David F

    2014-07-18

    Alcohol consumption exacerbates the course of hepatitis C viral (HCV) infection, worsens outcomes and contributes to the development of chronic infection that exhibits low anti-viral treatment efficiency. The lack of suitable in vivo models makes HCV-ethanol studies very difficult. Here, we examine whether chimeric SCID Alb-uPA mice transplanted with human hepatocytes and infected with HCV develop worsening pathology when fed ethanol. After 5 weeks of feeding, such mice fed chow+water (control) or chow+20% ethanol in water (EtOH) diets mice developed oxidative stress, decreased proteasome activity and increased steatosis. Importantly, HCV(+) mice in the control group cleared HCV RNA after 5 weeks, while the infection persisted in EtOH-fed mice at the same or even higher levels compared with pre-feeding HCV RNA. We conclude that in chimeric SCID Alb-uPA mice, EtOH exposure causes the complex biochemical and histological changes typical for alcoholic liver injury. In addition, ethanol feeding delays the clearance of HCV RNA thereby generating persistent infection and promoting liver injury. Overall, this model is appropriate for conducting HCV-ethanol studies. PMID:24953695

  9. Analysis of cell-cell junctions in human amnion and chorionic plate affected by chorioamnionitis.

    PubMed

    Licini, Caterina; Tossetta, Giovanni; Avellini, Chiara; Ciarmela, Pasquapina; Lorenzi, Teresa; Toti, Paolo; Gesuita, Rosaria; Voltolini, Chiara; Petraglia, Felice; Castellucci, Mario; Marzioni, Daniela

    2016-07-01

    Chorioamnionitis is an acute inflammatory reaction associated with the premature rupture of the fetal membranes. It is caused mainly by invasion of bacteria from the vaginal tract that can penetrate the intact membranes and invade the amnion cavity and the decidua. Tight junctions (TJs) and adherent junctions (AJs) are intercellular junctions crucial for epithelia adhesion and permeability regulation in a wide variety of tissues and organs. Our aim is to investigate if TJ and AJ molecules are involved in human chorioamnionitis. We studied the protein expression (by immunohistochemistry and western blotting) and the mRNA levels (by RT-PCR) of some junction proteins such as Zonula Occludens-1 (ZO-1), occludin, VE-cadherin and β-catenin in fetal membranes from women with chorioamnionitis compared to those membranes derived from idiopathic pregnancies. Western blotting and immunohistochemical data established that occludin expression was decreased in amnion with chorioamnionitis compared to amnion from idiopathic pregnancies. Samples tested for ZO-1, VE-cadherin and β-catenin (proteins and mRNAs) showed no differences between idiopathic and pathological membranes. One of the most relevant results is the decrease of occludin in membranes with chorioamnionitis. Since we have previously demonstrated that some cytokines, particularly elevated in the chorioamnionitis, cause the disruption of TJs in placental villi, we suggest that the decrease of occludin in amnion may be the first change that leads to the rupture of the amniotic membrane in this pathology. PMID:26739007

  10. Orally delivered sour cherry seed extract (SCSE) affects cardiovascular and hematological parameters in humans.

    PubMed

    Csiki, Zoltan; Papp-Bata, Agnes; Czompa, Attila; Nagy, Aniko; Bak, Istvan; Lekli, Istvan; Javor, Andras; Haines, David D; Balla, Gyorgy; Tosaki, Arpad

    2015-03-01

    In the present study, we investigated the effects of sour cherry seed extract (SCSE) on a variety of systemic processes that contribute to general health and viability of human subjects. The experiments were conducted according to a double-blind protocol in which six healthy individuals were administered 250-mg/day SCSE for 14 days, while four were treated with placebo. Peripheral blood was collected before and after the treatment period. Samples were analyzed for levels of selected cells, enzymes, or metabolites. Subjects that received SCSE showed increases in the values of mean cell volume, serum transferrin, mean peroxidase index, and representation of peripheral blood lymphocytes. On the other hand, decreases were observed in circulating neutrophils and ferritin levels. Changes observed in the present study do not fit into a clear pattern that might yield additional in-depth understanding of SCSE-mediated alterations in physiologic responses. The most encouraging result of the present study is the absence of any indication of toxicity by subjects consuming the extract. PMID:25640007

  11. Alcohol lowers the vasoconstriction threshold in humans without affecting core cooling rate during mild cold exposure.

    PubMed

    Johnston, C E; Bristow, G K; Elias, D A; Giesbrecht, G G

    1996-01-01

    Elevated blood alcohol levels are often seen in hypothermia and hyperthermia related deaths, leading to the belief that alcohol renders humans poikilothermic. We examined the core temperature (Tco) thresholds for sweating, vasoconstriction and shivering as well as core cooling rates of seven subjects immersed in 28 degrees C water. On two separate days, subjects exercised on an underwater cycle ergometer to elevate Tco above the sweating threshold. They then rested and cooled until they shivered vigorously. Subjects drank orange juice (7 ml.kg-1) prior to immersion during the control trial and 1 ml.kg-1 absolute ethanol, added to orange juice in a 1:6 ratio, during the alcohol trial. Mean blood alcohol concentration (breath analysis) was 0.097 +/- 0.010 g% at the start of cooling and 0.077 +/- 0.008 g% at the end of the cooling period. Alcohol lowered the vasoconstriction threshold by 0.32 +/- 0.2 degrees C and elevated finger tip blood flow, but had no effect on thresholds for sweating and shivering or core cooling rate. Considering these minor effects it is unlikely that moderate alcohol consumption predisposes individuals to hypothermia or hyperthermia via impaired thermoregulation, but rather likely due to behavioral factors. PMID:8897037

  12. LMNA Knock-Down Affects Differentiation and Progression of Human Neuroblastoma Cells

    PubMed Central

    Maresca, Giovanna; Natoli, Manuela; Nardella, Marta; Arisi, Ivan; Trisciuoglio, Daniela; Desideri, Marianna; Brandi, Rossella; D’Aguanno, Simona; Nicotra, Maria Rita; D’Onofrio, Mara; Urbani, Andrea; Natali, Pier Giorgio; Bufalo, Donatella Del

    2012-01-01

    Background Neuroblastoma (NB) is one of the most aggressive tumors that occur in childhood. Although genes, such as MYCN, have been shown to be involved in the aggressiveness of the disease, the identification of new biological markers is still desirable. The induction of differentiation is one of the strategies used in the treatment of neuroblastoma. A-type lamins are components of the nuclear lamina and are involved in differentiation. We studied the role of Lamin A/C in the differentiation and progression of neuroblastoma. Methodology/Principal Findings Knock-down of Lamin A/C (LMNA-KD) in neuroblastoma cells blocked retinoic acid-induced differentiation, preventing neurites outgrowth and the expression of neural markers. The genome-wide gene-expression profile and the proteomic analysis of LMNA-KD cells confirmed the inhibition of differentiation and demonstrated an increase of aggressiveness-related genes and molecules resulting in augmented migration/invasion, and increasing the drug resistance of the cells. The more aggressive phenotype acquired by LMNA-KD cells was also maintained in vivo after injection into nude mice. A preliminary immunohistochemistry analysis of Lamin A/C expression in nine primary stages human NB indicated that this protein is poorly expressed in most of these cases. Conclusions/Significance We demonstrated for the first time in neuroblastoma cells that Lamin A/C plays a central role in the differentiation, and that the loss of this protein gave rise to a more aggressive tumor phenotype. PMID:23049808

  13. The second-shell metal ligands of human arginase affect coordination of the nucleophile and substrate.

    PubMed

    Stone, Everett M; Chantranupong, Lynne; Georgiou, George

    2010-12-14

    The active sites of eukaryotic arginase enzymes are strictly conserved, especially the first- and second-shell ligands that coordinate the two divalent metal cations that generate a hydroxide molecule for nucleophilic attack on the guanidinium carbon of l-arginine and the subsequent production of urea and l-ornithine. Here by using comprehensive pairwise saturation mutagenesis of the first- and second-shell metal ligands in human arginase I, we demonstrate that several metal binding ligands are actually quite tolerant to amino acid substitutions. Of >2800 double mutants of first- and second-shell residues analyzed, we found more than 80 unique amino acid substitutions, of which four were in first-shell residues. Remarkably, certain second-shell mutations could modulate the binding of both the nucleophilic water/hydroxide molecule and substrate or product ligands, resulting in activity greater than that of the wild-type enzyme. The data presented here constitute the first comprehensive saturation mutagenesis analysis of a metallohydrolase active site and reveal that the strict conservation of the second-shell metal binding residues in eukaryotic arginases does not reflect kinetic optimization of the enzyme during the course of evolution. PMID:21053939

  14. Irradiation affects cellular properties and Eph receptor expression in human melanoma cells

    PubMed Central

    Mosch, Birgit; Pietzsch, Doreen; Pietzsch, Jens

    2012-01-01

    X-ray irradiation influences metastatic properties of tumor cells and, moreover, metastasis and cellular motility can be modified by members of the Eph receptor/ephrin family of receptor tyrosine kinases. We hypothesized that irradiation-induced changes in cellular properties relevant for metastasis in melanoma cells could be mediated by Eph receptor/ephrin signaling. In this pilot study, we analyzed one pre-metastatic (Mel-Juso) and three metastatic human melanoma (Mel-Juso-L3, A375, and A2058) cells lines and predominantly found anti-metastatic effects of X-ray irradiation with impaired cell growth, clonal growth and motility. Additionally, we observed an irradiation-induced increase in adhesion paralleled by a decrease in migration in Mel-Juso and Mel-Juso-L3 cells and, in part, also in A375 cells. We further demonstrate a decrease of EphA2 both in expression and activity at 7 d after irradiation paralleled by an upregulation of EphA3. Analyzing downstream signaling after irradiation, we detected decreased Src kinase phosphorylation, but unchanged focal adhesion kinase (FAK) phosphorylation, indicating, in part, irradiation-induced downregulation of signaling via the EphA2-Src-FAK axis in melanoma cells. However, to which extent this finding contributes to the modification of metastasis-relevant cellular properties remains to be elucidated. PMID:22568947

  15. Affective and cognitive prefrontal cortex projections to the lateral habenula in humans

    PubMed Central

    Vadovičová, Karin

    2014-01-01

    Anterior insula (AI) and dorsal ACC (dACC) are known to process information about pain, loss, adversities, bad, harmful or suboptimal choices and consequences that threaten survival or well-being. Also pregenual ACC (pgACC) is linked to loss and pain, being activated by sad thoughts and regrets. Lateral habenula (LHb) is stimulated by predicted and received pain, discomfort, aversive outcome, loss. Its chronic stimulation makes us feel worse/low and gradually stops us choosing and moving for the suboptimal or punished choices, by direct and indirect (via rostromedial tegmental nucleus, RMTg) inhibition of dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) and VTA/SNc. The response selectivity of LHb neurons suggests their cortical input from affective and cognitive evaluative regions that make expectations about bad, unpleasant or suboptimal outcomes. Based on these facts I predicted direct dACC, pgACC and AI projections to LHb, which form part of an adversity processing circuit that learns to avoid bad outcomes by suppressing dopamine and serotonin signal. To test this connectivity I used Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI). I found dACC, pgACC, AI and caudolateral OFC (clOFC) projections to LHb. I predicted no corticohabenular projections from the reward processing regions: medial OFC (mOFC) and ventral ACC (vACC) because both respond most strongly to good, high valued stimuli and outcomes, inducing dopamine and serotonin release. This lack of LHb projections was confirmed for vACC and likely for mOFC. The surprising findings were the corticohabenular projections from the cognitive prefrontal cortex regions, known for flexible reasoning, planning and combining whatever information are relevant for reaching current goals. I propose that the prefrontohabenular projections provide a teaching signal for value-based choice behavior, to learn to deselect, avoid or inhibit the potentially harmful, low valued or wrong choices, goals, strategies, predictions and ways of doing things, to prevent bad

  16. Topical anaesthesia does not affect cutaneous vasomotor or sudomotor responses in human skin.

    PubMed

    Metzler-Wilson, K; Wilson, T E

    2013-10-01

    (1) The effects of local sensory blockade (topical anaesthesia) on eccrine sweat glands and cutaneous circulation are not well understood. This study aimed to determine whether topical lidocaine/prilocaine alters eccrine sweat gland and cutaneous blood vessel responses. (2) Sweating (capacitance hygrometry) was induced via forearm intradermal microdialysis of five acetylcholine (ACh) doses (1 × 10(-4) to 1 × 10(0) m, 10-fold increments) in control and treated forearm sites in six healthy subjects. Nitric oxide-mediated vasodilatory (sodium nitroprusside) and adrenergic vasoconstrictor (noradrenaline) agonists were iontophoresed in lidocaine/prilocaine-treated and control forearm skin in nine healthy subjects during blood flow assessment (laser Doppler flowmetry, expressed as% from baseline cutaneous vascular conductance; CVC; flux/mean arterial pressure). (3) Non-linear regression curve fitting identified no change in the ED50 of ACh-induced sweating after sensory blockade (-1.42 ± 0.23 logM) compared to control (-1.27 ± 0.23 logM; P > .05) or in Emax (0.43 ± 0.08 with, 0.53 ± 0.16 mg cm(-2) min(-1) without lidocaine/prilocaine; P > .05). Sensory blockade did not alter the vasodilator response to sodium nitroprusside (1280 ± 548% change from baseline CVC with, 1204 ± 247% without lidocaine/prilocaine) or vasoconstrictor response to noradrenaline (-14 ± 4% change from baseline CVC with, -22 ± 14% without lidocaine/prilocaine; P > 0.05). (4) Cutaneous sensory blockade does not appear to alter nitric oxide-mediated vasodilation, adrenergic vasoconstriction, or cholinergic eccrine sweating dose-response sensitivity or responsiveness to maximal dose. Thus, lidocaine/prilocaine treatment should not affect sweat gland function or have blood flow implications for subsequent research protocols or clinical procedures. PMID:23663206

  17. Analysis of mobile phone design features affecting radiofrequency power absorbed in a human head phantom.

    PubMed

    Kuehn, Sven; Kelsh, Michael A; Kuster, Niels; Sheppard, Asher R; Shum, Mona

    2013-09-01

    The US FCC mandates the testing of all mobile phones to demonstrate compliance with the rule requiring that the peak spatial SAR does not exceed the limit of 1.6 W/kg averaged over any 1 g of tissue. These test data, measured in phantoms with mobile phones operating at maximum antenna input power, permitted us to evaluate the variation in SARs across mobile phone design factors such as shape and antenna design, communication technology, and test date (over a 7-year period). Descriptive statistical summaries calculated for 850 MHz and 1900 MHz phones and ANOVA were used to evaluate the influence of the foregoing factors on SARs. Service technology accounted for the greatest variability in compliance test SARs that ranged from AMPS (highest) to CDMA, iDEN, TDMA, and GSM (lowest). However, the dominant factor for SARs during use is the time-averaged antenna input power, which may be much less than the maximum power used in testing. This factor is largely defined by the communication system; e.g., the GSM phone average output can be higher than CDMA by a factor of 100. Phone shape, antenna type, and orientation of a phone were found to be significant but only on the order of up to a factor of 2 (3 dB). The SAR in the tilt position was significantly smaller than for touch. The side of the head did not affect SAR levels significantly. Among the remaining factors, external antennae produced greater SARs than internal ones, and brick and clamshell phones produced greater SARs than slide phones. Assuming phone design and usage patterns do not change significantly over time, we have developed a normalization procedure and formula that permits reliable prediction of the relative SAR between various communication systems. This approach can be applied to improve exposure assessment in epidemiological research. PMID:23533135

  18. Different Factors Affecting Human ANP Amyloid Aggregation and Their Implications in Congestive Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Millucci, Lia; Paccagnini, Eugenio; Ghezzi, Lorenzo; Bernardini, Giulia; Braconi, Daniela; Laschi, Marcella; Consumi, Marco; Spreafico, Adriano; Tanganelli, Piero; Lupetti, Pietro; Magnani, Agnese; Santucci, Annalisa

    2011-01-01

    Aims Atrial Natriuretic Peptide (ANP)-containing amyloid is frequently found in the elderly heart. No data exist regarding ANP aggregation process and its link to pathologies. Our aims were: i) to experimentally prove the presumptive association of Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) and Isolated Atrial Amyloidosis (IAA); ii) to characterize ANP aggregation, thereby elucidating IAA implication in the CHF pathogenesis. Methods and Results A significant prevalence (85%) of IAA was immunohistochemically proven ex vivo in biopsies from CHF patients. We investigated in vitro (using Congo Red, Thioflavin T, SDS-PAGE, transmission electron microscopy, infrared spectroscopy) ANP fibrillogenesis, starting from α-ANP as well as the ability of dimeric β-ANP to promote amyloid formation. Different conditions were adopted, including those reproducing β-ANP prevalence in CHF. Our results defined the uncommon rapidity of α-ANP self-assembly at acidic pH supporting the hypothesis that such aggregates constitute the onset of a fibrillization process subsequently proceeding at physiological pH. Interestingly, CHF-like conditions induced the production of the most stable and time-resistant ANP fibrils suggesting that CHF affected people may be prone to develop IAA. Conclusions We established a link between IAA and CHF by ex vivo examination and assessed that β-ANP is, in vitro, the seed of ANP fibrils. Our results indicate that β-ANP plays a crucial role in ANP amyloid deposition under physiopathological CHF conditions. Overall, our findings indicate that early IAA-related ANP deposition may occur in CHF and suggest that these latter patients should be monitored for the development of cardiac amyloidosis. PMID:21814559

  19. Analytical modeling of worldwide medical radiation use

    SciTech Connect

    Mettler, F.A. Jr.; Davis, M.; Kelsey, C.A.; Rosenberg, R.; Williams, A.

    1987-02-01

    An analytical model was developed to estimate the availability and frequency of medical radiation use on a worldwide basis. This model includes medical and dental x-ray, nuclear medicine, and radiation therapy. The development of an analytical model is necessary as the first step in estimating the radiation dose to the world's population from this source. Since there is no data about the frequency of medical radiation use in more than half the countries in the world and only fragmentary data in an additional one-fourth of the world's countries, such a model can be used to predict the uses of medical radiation in these countries. The model indicates that there are approximately 400,000 medical x-ray machines worldwide and that approximately 1.2 billion diagnostic medical x-ray examinations are performed annually. Dental x-ray examinations are estimated at 315 million annually and approximately 22 million in-vivo diagnostic nuclear medicine examinations. Approximately 4 million radiation therapy procedures or courses of treatment are undertaken annually.

  20. Origins of food crops connect countries worldwide

    PubMed Central

    Achicanoy, Harold A.; Bjorkman, Anne D.; Navarro-Racines, Carlos; Guarino, Luigi; Flores-Palacios, Ximena; Engels, Johannes M. M.; Wiersema, John H.; Dempewolf, Hannes; Sotelo, Steven; Ramírez-Villegas, Julian; Castañeda-Álvarez, Nora P.; Fowler, Cary; Jarvis, Andy; Rieseberg, Loren H.; Struik, Paul C.

    2016-01-01

    Research into the origins of food plants has led to the recognition that specific geographical regions around the world have been of particular importance to the development of agricultural crops. Yet the relative contributions of these different regions in the context of current food systems have not been quantified. Here we determine the origins (‘primary regions of diversity’) of the crops comprising the food supplies and agricultural production of countries worldwide. We estimate the degree to which countries use crops from regions of diversity other than their own (‘foreign crops’), and quantify changes in this usage over the past 50 years. Countries are highly interconnected with regard to primary regions of diversity of the crops they cultivate and/or consume. Foreign crops are extensively used in food supplies (68.7% of national food supplies as a global mean are derived from foreign crops) and production systems (69.3% of crops grown are foreign). Foreign crop usage has increased significantly over the past 50 years, including in countries with high indigenous crop diversity. The results provide a novel perspective on the ongoing globalization of food systems worldwide, and bolster evidence for the importance of international collaboration on genetic resource conservation and exchange.

  1. Estimating the Worldwide Extent of Illegal Fishing

    PubMed Central

    Agnew, David J.; Pearce, John; Pramod, Ganapathiraju; Peatman, Tom; Watson, Reg; Beddington, John R.; Pitcher, Tony J.

    2009-01-01

    Illegal and unreported fishing contributes to overexploitation of fish stocks and is a hindrance to the recovery of fish populations and ecosystems. This study is the first to undertake a world-wide analysis of illegal and unreported fishing. Reviewing the situation in 54 countries and on the high seas, we estimate that lower and upper estimates of the total value of current illegal and unreported fishing losses worldwide are between $10 bn and $23.5 bn annually, representing between 11 and 26 million tonnes. Our data are of sufficient resolution to detect regional differences in the level and trend of illegal fishing over the last 20 years, and we can report a significant correlation between governance and the level of illegal fishing. Developing countries are most at risk from illegal fishing, with total estimated catches in West Africa being 40% higher than reported catches. Such levels of exploitation severely hamper the sustainable management of marine ecosystems. Although there have been some successes in reducing the level of illegal fishing in some areas, these developments are relatively recent and follow growing international focus on the problem. This paper provides the baseline against which successful action to curb illegal fishing can be judged. PMID:19240812

  2. Worldwide status of burbot and conservation measures

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stapanian, Martin A.; Paragamian, Vaughn L.; Madenjian, Charles P.; Jackson, James R.; Lappalainen, Jyrki; Evenson, Matthew J.; Neufeld, Matthew D.

    2010-01-01

    Although burbot (Lota lota Gadidae) are widespread and abundant throughout much of their natural range, there are many populations that have been extirpated, endangered or are in serious decline. Due in part to the species’ lack of popularity as a game and commercial fish, few regions consider burbot in management plans. We review the worldwide population status of burbot and synthesize reasons why some burbot populations are endangered or declining, some burbot populations have recovered and some burbot populations do not recover despite management measures. Burbot have been extirpated in much of Western Europe and the United Kingdom and are threatened or endangered in much of North America and Eurasia. Pollution and habitat change, particularly the effects of dams, appear to be the main causes for declines in riverine burbot populations. Pollution and the adverse effects of invasive species appear to be the main reasons for declines in lacustrine populations. Warmer water temperatures, due either to discharge from dams or climate change, have been noted in declining burbot populations at the southern extent of their range. Currently, fishing pressure does not appear to be limiting burbot populations world-wide. We suggest mitigation measures for burbot population recovery, particularly those impacted by dams and invasive species.

  3. Worldwide variability in deceased organ donation registries

    PubMed Central

    Rosenblum, Amanda M; Li, Alvin Ho-Ting; Roels, Leo; Stewart, Bryan; Prakash, Versha; Beitel, Janice; Young, Kimberly; Shemie, Sam; Nickerson, Peter; Garg, Amit X

    2012-01-01

    The variability in deceased organ donation registries worldwide has received little attention. We considered all operating registries, where individual wishes about organ donation were recorded in a computerized database. We included registries which recorded an individual's decision to be a donor (donor registry), and registries which only recorded an individual's objection (non-donor registry). We collected information on 15 characteristics including history, design, use and number of registrants for 27 registries (68%). Most registries are nationally operated and government-owned. Registrations in five nations expire and require renewal. Some registries provide the option to make specific organ selections in the donation decision. Just over half of donor registries provide legally binding authorization to donation. In all national donor registries, except one, the proportion of adults (15+) registered is modest (<40%). These proportions can be even lower when only affirmative decisions are considered. One nation provides priority status on the transplant waiting list as an incentive to affirmative registration, while another nation makes registering a donation decision mandatory to obtain a driver's license. Registered objections in non-donor registries are rare (<0.5%). The variation in organ donor registries worldwide necessitates public discourse and quality improvement initiatives, to identify and support leading practices in registry use. PMID:22507140

  4. Stationary power fuel cell commercialization status worldwide

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, M.C.

    1996-12-31

    Fuel cell technologies for stationary power are set to play a role in power generation applications worldwide. The worldwide fuel cell vision is to provide powerplants for the emerging distributed generation and on-site markets. Progress towards commercialization has occurred in all fuel cell development areas. Around 100 ONSI phosphoric acid fuel cell (PAFC) units have been sold, with significant foreign sales in Europe and Japan. Fuji has apparently overcome its PAFC decay problems. Industry-driven molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC) programs in Japan and the U.S. are conducting megawatt (MW)-class demonstrations, which are bringing the MCFC to the verge of commercialization. Westinghouse Electric, the acknowledged world leader in tubular solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) technology, continues to set performance records and has completed construction of a 4-MW/year manufacturing facility in the U.S. Fuel cells have also taken a major step forward with the conceptual development of ultra-high efficiency fuel cell/gas turbine plants. Many SOFC developers in Japan, Europe, and North America continue to make significant advances.

  5. Worldwide practice in gastric cancer surgery

    PubMed Central

    Brenkman, Hylke JF; Haverkamp, Leonie; Ruurda, Jelle P; van Hillegersberg, Richard

    2016-01-01

    AIM: To evaluate the current status of gastric cancer surgery worldwide. METHODS: An international cross-sectional survey on gastric cancer surgery was performed amongst international upper gastro-intestinal surgeons. All surgical members of the International Gastric Cancer Association were invited by e-mail to participate. An English web-based survey had to be filled in with regard to their surgical preferences. Questions asked included hospital volume, the use of neoadjuvant treatment, preferred surgical approach, extent of the lymphadenectomy and preferred anastomotic technique. The invitations were sent in September 2013 and the survey was closed in January 2014. RESULTS: The corresponding specific response rate was 227/615 (37%). The majority of respondents: originated from Asia (54%), performed > 21 gastrectomies per year (79%) and used neoadjuvant chemotherapy (73%). An open surgical procedure was performed by the majority of surgeons for distal gastrectomy for advanced cancer (91%) and total gastrectomy for both early and advanced cancer (52% and 94%). A minimally invasive procedure was preferred for distal gastrectomy for early cancer (65%). In Asia surgeons preferred a minimally invasive procedure for total gastrectomy for early cancer also (63%). A D1+ lymphadenectomy was preferred in early gastric cancer (52% for distal, 54% for total gastrectomy) and a D2 lymphadenectomy was preferred in advanced gastric cancer (93% for distal, 92% for total gastrectomy) CONCLUSION: Surgical preferences for gastric cancer surgery vary between surgeons worldwide. Although the majority of surgeons use neoadjuvant chemotherapy, minimally invasive techniques are still not widely adapted. PMID:27099448

  6. Worldwide variability in deceased organ donation registries.

    PubMed

    Rosenblum, Amanda M; Li, Alvin Ho-Ting; Roels, Leo; Stewart, Bryan; Prakash, Versha; Beitel, Janice; Young, Kimberly; Shemie, Sam; Nickerson, Peter; Garg, Amit X

    2012-08-01

    The variability in deceased organ donation registries worldwide has received little attention. We considered all operating registries, where individual wishes about organ donation were recorded in a computerized database. We included registries which recorded an individual's decision to be a donor (donor registry), and registries which only recorded an individual's objection (non-donor registry). We collected information on 15 characteristics including history, design, use and number of registrants for 27 registries (68%). Most registries are nationally operated and government-owned. Registrations in five nations expire and require renewal. Some registries provide the option to make specific organ selections in the donation decision. Just over half of donor registries provide legally binding authorization to donation. In all national donor registries, except one, the proportion of adults (15+) registered is modest (<40%). These proportions can be even lower when only affirmative decisions are considered. One nation provides priority status on the transplant waiting list as an incentive to affirmative registration, while another nation makes registering a donation decision mandatory to obtain a driver's license. Registered objections in non-donor registries are rare (<0.5%). The variation in organ donor registries worldwide necessitates public discourse and quality improvement initiatives, to identify and support leading practices in registry use. PMID:22507140

  7. Allergic inflammation in the human lower respiratory tract affected by exposure to diesel exhaust.

    PubMed

    Riedl, Marc A; Diaz-Sanchez, David; Linn, William S; Gong, Henry; Clark, Kenneth W; Effros, Richard M; Miller, J Wayne; Cocker, David R; Berhane, Kiros T

    2012-02-01

    To improve understanding of human health risks from exposure to diesel exhaust particles (DEP*), we tested whether immunologic effects previously observed in the human nose also occur in the lower airways. Our overall hypothesis was that cell influx and production of cytokines, chemokines, immunoglobulin E (IgE), and other mediators, which would be measurable in sputum and blood, occur in people with asthma after realistic controlled exposures to diesel exhaust (DE). In Phase 1 we tested for direct effects of DE in subjects with clinically undifferentiated mild asthma. In Phase 2 we tested whether DE exposure would exacerbate response to inhaled cat allergen in subjects with both asthma and cat sensitivity. The exposure facility was a controlled-environment chamber supplied with DE from an idling medium-duty truck with ultra-low-sulfur fuel and no catalytic converter. We exposed volunteers for 2 hours with intermittent exercise to exhaust with DEP mass concentration near 100 microg/m3. Exposures to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) near 0.35 ppm (similar to its concentration in DE) and to filtered air (FA) served as controls. Blood was drawn before exposure on day 1 and again the next morning (day 2). Sputum was induced only on day 2. Bronchial reactivity was measured -1 hour after exposure ended. Supplementary endpoints included measures of blood coagulation status, cardiopulmonary physiology, and symptoms. Each phase employed 15 subjects with asthma; 3 subjects participated in both phases. In Phase 1, airway reactivity was measured with inhaled methacholine; in Phase 2, with inhaled cat allergen. We found little biologic response to DE exposure compared with exposure to control atmospheres. In Phase 1, interleukin 4 (IL-4) in sputum showed an estimated 1.7-fold increase attributable to DE exposure, which was close to statistical significance; airway resistance increased modestly but significantly on day 2 after DE exposure; and nonspecific symptom scores increased

  8. Bifidobacteria isolated from infants and cultured on human milk oligosaccharides affect intestinal epithelial function

    PubMed Central

    Chichlowski, Maciej; De Lartigue, Guillaume; German, J. Bruce; Raybould, Helen E.; Mills, David A.

    2012-01-01

    Objectives Human milk oligosaccharides (HMO) are the third most abundant component of breast milk. Our laboratory has previously revealed gene clusters specifically linked to HMO metabolism in select bifidobacteria isolated from fecal samples of infants. Our objective was to test the hypothesis that growth of select bifidobacteria on HMO stimulates the intestinal epithelium. Methods Caco-2 and HT-29 cells were incubated with lactose (LAC) or HMO-grown Bifidobacterium longum subsp. infantis (B. infantis) or B. bifidum. Bacterial adhesion and translocation was measured by real-time quantitative PCR. Expression of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines and tight junction proteins was analyzed by real time reverse transcriptase. Distribution of tight junction proteins was measured using immunofluorescent microscopy. Results We showed that HMO-grown B. infantis had significantly higher rate of adhesion to HT-29 cells compared to B. bifidum. B. infantis also induced expression of a cell membrane glycoprotein, P-selectin glycoprotein ligand -1. Both B. infantis and B. bifidum grown on HMO caused less occludin relocalization and higher expression of anti-inflammatory cytokine, interleukin (IL)-10 compared to LAC-grown bacteria in Caco-2 cells. B. bifidum grown on HMO showed higher expression of junctional adhesion molecule and occludin in Caco-2 cell and HT-29 cells. There were no significant differences between LAC or HMO treatments in bacterial translocation. Conclusions This study provides evidence for the specific relationship between HMO-grown bifidobacteria and intestinal epithelial cells. To our knowledge, this is the first study describing HMO-induced changes in the bifidobacteria-intestinal cells interaction. PMID:22383026

  9. Fetal sex affects expression of renin-angiotensin system components in term human decidua.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yu; Pringle, Kirsty G; Sykes, Shane D; Marques, Francine Z; Morris, Brian J; Zakar, Tamas; Lumbers, Eugenie R

    2012-01-01

    The maternal decidua expresses the genes of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS). Human decidua was collected at term either before labor (i.e. cesarean delivery) or after spontaneous labor. The mRNA for prorenin (REN), prorenin receptor (ATP6AP2), angiotensinogen (AGT), angiotensin-converting enzymes 1 and 2 (ACE1 and ACE2), angiotensin II type 1 receptor (AGTR1), and angiotensin 1-7 receptor (MAS1) were measured by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Decidual explants were cultured in duplicate for 24 and 48 h, and all RAS mRNA, and the secretion of prorenin, angiotensin II, and angiotensin 1-7 was measured using quantitative real-time RT-PCR, ELISA, and radioimmunoassay, respectively. In the decidua collected before labor, REN mRNA levels were higher if the fetus was female. In addition, REN, ATP6AP2, AGT, and MAS1 mRNA abundance was greater in decidual explants collected from women carrying a female fetus, as was prorenin protein. After 24 h, ACE1 mRNA was higher in the decidual explants from women with a male fetus, whereas after 48 h, both ACE1 and ACE2 mRNA was higher in decidual explants from women with a female fetus. Angiotensin II was present in all explants, but angiotensin 1-7 levels often registered below the lower limits of sensitivity for the assay. After labor, decidua, when compared with nonlaboring decidua, demonstrated lower REN expression when the fetus was female. Therefore, the maternal decidual RAS is regulated in a sex-specific manner, suggesting that it may function differently when the fetus is male than when it is female. PMID:22045662

  10. Cognitive and Tactile Factors Affecting Human Haptic Performance in Later Life

    PubMed Central

    Kalisch, Tobias; Kattenstroth, Jan-Christoph; Kowalewski, Rebecca; Tegenthoff, Martin; Dinse, Hubert R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Vision and haptics are the key modalities by which humans perceive objects and interact with their environment in a target-oriented manner. Both modalities share higher-order neural resources and the mechanisms required for object exploration. Compared to vision, the understanding of haptic information processing is still rudimentary. Although it is known that haptic performance, similar to many other skills, decreases in old age, the underlying mechanisms are not clear. It is yet to be determined to what extent this decrease is related to the age-related loss of tactile acuity or cognitive capacity. Methodology/Principal Findings We investigated the haptic performance of 81 older adults by means of a cross-modal object recognition test. Additionally, we assessed the subjects' tactile acuity with an apparatus-based two-point discrimination paradigm, and their cognitive performance by means of the non-verbal Raven-Standard-Progressive matrices test. As expected, there was a significant age-related decline in performance on all 3 tests. With the exception of tactile acuity, this decline was found to be more distinct in female subjects. Correlation analyses revealed a strong relationship between haptic and cognitive performance for all subjects. Tactile performance, on the contrary, was only significantly correlated with male subjects' haptic performance. Conclusions Haptic object recognition is a demanding task in old age, especially when it comes to the exploration of complex, unfamiliar objects. Our data support a disproportionately higher impact of cognition on haptic performance as compared to the impact of tactile acuity. Our findings are in agreement with studies reporting an increase in co-variation between individual sensory performance and general cognitive functioning in old age. PMID:22291952

  11. Generation of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells from Extraembryonic Tissues of Fetuses Affected by Monogenic Diseases.

    PubMed

    Spitalieri, Paola; Talarico, Rosa V; Botta, Annalisa; Murdocca, Michela; D'Apice, Maria Rosaria; Orlandi, Augusto; Giardina, Emiliano; Santoro, Massimo; Brancati, Francesco; Novelli, Giuseppe; Sangiuolo, Federica

    2015-08-01

    The generation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) derived from an autologous extraembryonic fetal source is an innovative personalized regenerative technology that can transform own-self cells into embryonic stem-like ones. These cells are regarded as a promising candidate for cell-based therapy, as well as an ideal target for disease modeling and drug discovery. Thus, hiPSCs enable researchers to undertake studies for treating diseases or for future applications of in utero therapy. We used a polycistronic lentiviral vector (hSTEMCCA-loxP) encoding OCT4, SOX2, KLF4, and cMYC genes and containing loxP sites, excisible by Cre recombinase, to reprogram patient-specific fetal cells derived from prenatal diagnosis for several genetic disorders, such as myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1), β-thalassemia (β-Thal), lymphedema-distichiasis syndrome (LDS), spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), cystic fibrosis (CF), as well as from wild-type (WT) fetal cells. Because cell types tested to create hiPSCs influence both the reprogramming process efficiency and the kinetics, we used chorionic villus (CV) and amniotic fluid (AF) cells, demonstrating how they represent an ideal cell resource for a more efficient generation of hiPSCs. The successful reprogramming of both CV and AF cells into hiPSCs was confirmed by specific morphological, molecular, and immunocytochemical markers and also by their teratogenic potential when inoculated in vivo. We further demonstrated the stability of reprogrammed cells over 10 and more passages and their capability to differentiate into the three embryonic germ layers, as well as into neural cells. These data suggest that hiPSCs-CV/AF can be considered a valid cellular model to accomplish pathogenesis studies and therapeutic applications. PMID:26474030

  12. Factors affecting ultraviolet-A photon emission from β-irradiated human keratinocyte cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le, M.; Mothersill, C. E.; Seymour, C. B.; Ahmad, S. B.; Armstrong, A.; Rainbow, A. J.; McNeill, F. E.

    2015-08-01

    The luminescence intensity of 340+/- 5 nm photons emitted from HaCaT (human keratinocyte) cells was investigated using a single-photon-counting system during cellular exposure to 90Y β-particles. Multiple factors were assessed to determine their influence upon the quantity and pattern of photon emission from β-irradiated cells. Exposure of 1× {{10}4} cells/5 mL to 703 μCi resulted in maximum UVA photoemission at 44.8× {{10}3}+/- 2.5× {{10}3} counts per second (cps) from live HaCaT cells (background: 1-5 cps); a 16-fold increase above cell-free controls. Significant biophoton emission was achieved only upon stimulation and was also dependent upon presence of cells. UVA luminescence was measured for 90Y activities 14 to 703 μCi where a positive relationship between photoemission and 90Y activity was observed. Irradiation of live HaCaT cells plated at various densities produced a distinct pattern of emission whereby luminescence increased up to a maximum at 1× {{10}4} cells/5 mL and thereafter decreased. However, this result was not observed in the dead cell population. Both live and dead HaCaT cells were irradiated and were found to demonstrate different rates of photon emission at low β activities (⩽400 μCi). Dead cells exhibited greater photon emission rates than live cells which may be attributable to metabolic processes taking place to modulate the photoemissive effect. The results indicate that photon emission from HaCaT cells is perturbed by external stimulation, is dependent upon the activity of radiation delivered, the density of irradiated cells, and cell viability. It is postulated that biophoton emission may be modulated by a biological or metabolic process.

  13. Prevalence and species of Cryptosporidium in human populations worldwide

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A high prevalence of cryptosporidiosis has been reported in children under 5 years of age in sub-Saharan Africa, especially, but not exclusively, the malnourished and those positive for HIV infection. Infection rates are highest during the rainy season. Cryptosporidium hominis, which is transmitted ...

  14. TGF-β stimulation in human and murine cells reveals commonly affected biological processes and pathways at transcription level

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The TGF-β signaling pathway is a fundamental pathway in the living cell, which plays a key role in many central cellular processes. The complex and sometimes contradicting mechanisms by which TGF-β yields phenotypic effects are not yet completely understood. In this study we investigated and compared the transcriptional response profile of TGF-β1 stimulation in different cell types. For this purpose, extensive experiments are performed and time-course microarray data are generated in human and mouse parenchymal liver cells, human mesenchymal stromal cells and mouse hematopoietic progenitor cells at different time points. We applied a panel of bioinformatics methods on our data to uncover common patterns in the dynamic gene expression response in respective cells. Results Our analysis revealed a quite variable and multifaceted transcriptional response profile of TGF-β1 stimulation, which goes far beyond the well-characterized classical TGF-β1 signaling pathway. Nonetheless, we could identify several commonly affected processes and signaling pathways across cell types and species. In addition our analysis suggested an important role of the transcription factor EGR1, which appeared to have a conserved influence across cell-types and species. Validation via an independent dataset on A549 lung adenocarcinoma cells largely confirmed our findings. Network analysis suggested explanations, how TGF-β1 stimulation could lead to the observed effects. Conclusions The analysis of dynamical transcriptional response to TGF-β treatment experiments in different human and murine cell systems revealed commonly affected biological processes and pathways, which could be linked to TGF-β1 via network analysis. This helps to gain insights about TGF-β pathway activities in these cell systems and its conserved interactions between the species and tissue types. PMID:24886091

  15. Are emotionally attached companion animal caregivers conscientious and neurotic? Factors that affect the human-companion animal relationship.

    PubMed

    Reevy, Gretchen M; Delgado, Mikel M

    2015-01-01

    Few studies have examined how personality traits may be related to the amounts and types of attachments humans have toward companion animals (pets). In this study, 1,098 companion animal guardians (owners) completed a survey that included the Big Five Inventory, the Lexington Attachment to Pets Scale, and the Pet Attachment Questionnaire. Each participant chose whether he or she identified as a Cat Person, Dog Person, Both, or Neither. Results indicated that neuroticism, conscientiousness, choosing a dog as a favorite pet, and identifying as a Cat Person, Dog Person, or Both predicted affection for a pet. Conscientiousness, extraversion, and openness decreased avoidant attachment to pets, and neuroticism increased anxious attachment to pets. Both dogs and cats could benefit from pet owners who are conscientious, and there may be some benefits of neuroticism in pet owners. The findings of this study will advance understanding of the human-animal bond. As this understanding increases, measurements of human attachment and personality may be useful for the development of tools that could assist shelter employees and veterinarians in counseling people about pet ownership. PMID:25517173

  16. Health and Economic Benefits of Improved Injury Prevention and Trauma Care Worldwide

    PubMed Central

    Kotagal, Meera; Agarwal-Harding, Kiran J.; Mock, Charles; Quansah, Robert; Arreola-Risa, Carlos; Meara, John G.

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Injury is a significant source of morbidity and mortality worldwide, and often disproportionately affects younger, more productive members of society. While many have made the case for improved injury prevention and trauma care, health system development in low- and middle-income countries is often limited by resources. This study aims to determine the economic benefit of improved injury prevention and trauma care in low- and middle-income countries. Methods This study uses existing data on injury mortality worldwide from the 2010 Global Burden of Disease Study to estimate the number of lives that could be saved if injury mortality rates in low- and middle-income countries could be reduced to rates in high-income countries. Using economic modeling – through the human capital approach and the value of a statistical life approach – the study then demonstrates the associated economic benefit of these lives saved. Results 88 percent of injury-related deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. If injury mortality rates in low- and middle-income countries were reduced to rates in high-income countries, 2,117,500 lives could be saved per year. This would result in between 49 million and 52 million disability adjusted life years averted per year, with discounting and age weighting. Using the human capital approach, the associated economic benefit of reducing mortality rates ranges from $245 to $261 billion with discounting and age weighting. Using the value of a statistical life approach, the benefit is between 758 and 786 billion dollars per year. Conclusions Reducing injury mortality in low- and middle-income countries could save over 2 million lives per year and provide significant economic benefit globally. Further investments in trauma care and injury prevention are needed. PMID:24626472

  17. Worldwide clustering of the corruption perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paulus, Michal; Kristoufek, Ladislav

    2015-06-01

    We inspect a possible clustering structure of the corruption perception among 134 countries. Using the average linkage clustering, we uncover a well-defined hierarchy in the relationships among countries. Four main clusters are identified and they suggest that countries worldwide can be quite well separated according to their perception of corruption. Moreover, we find a strong connection between corruption levels and a stage of development inside the clusters. The ranking of countries according to their corruption perfectly copies the ranking according to the economic performance measured by the gross domestic product per capita of the member states. To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first one to present an application of hierarchical and clustering methods to the specific case of corruption.

  18. Selection Signatures in Worldwide Sheep Populations

    PubMed Central

    Fariello, Maria-Ines; Servin, Bertrand; Tosser-Klopp, Gwenola; Rupp, Rachel; Moreno, Carole; Cristobal, Magali San; Boitard, Simon

    2014-01-01

    The diversity of populations in domestic species offers great opportunities to study genome response to selection. The recently published Sheep HapMap dataset is a great example of characterization of the world wide genetic diversity in sheep. In this study, we re-analyzed the Sheep HapMap dataset to identify selection signatures in worldwide sheep populations. Compared to previous analyses, we made use of statistical methods that (i) take account of the hierarchical structure of sheep populations, (ii) make use of linkage disequilibrium information and (iii) focus specifically on either recent or older selection signatures. We show that this allows pinpointing several new selection signatures in the sheep genome and distinguishing those related to modern breeding objectives and to earlier post-domestication constraints. The newly identified regions, together with the ones previously identified, reveal the extensive genome response to selection on morphology, color and adaptation to new environments. PMID:25126940

  19. Climate Change Impacts on Worldwide Coffee Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foreman, T.; Rising, J. A.

    2015-12-01

    Coffee (Coffea arabica and Coffea canephora) plays a vital role in many countries' economies, providing necessary income to 25 million members of tropical countries, and supporting a $81 billion industry, making it one of the most valuable commodities in the world. At the same time, coffee is at the center of many issues of sustainability. It is vulnerable to climate change, with disease outbreaks becoming more common and suitable regions beginning to shift. We develop a statistical production model for coffee which incorporates temperature, precipitation, frost, and humidity effects using a new database of worldwide coffee production. We then use this model to project coffee yields and production into the future based on a variety of climate forecasts. This model can then be used together with a market model to forecast the locations of future coffee production as well as future prices, supply, and demand.

  20. Visually Exploring Worldwide Incidents Tracking System Data

    SciTech Connect

    Chhatwal, Shree D.; Rose, Stuart J.

    2008-01-27

    This paper presents refinements of an existing analytic tool, Juxter, which was developed for the visualization of multi-dimensional categorical data, and explores its application to support exploration and interaction with open source Worldwide Incidents Tracking System (WITS) data. The volume and complexity of data available on terrorism makes it hard to analyze. Information systems that can efficiently and effectively collect, access, analyze, and report terrorist incidents can help in further studies focused on preventing, detecting, and responding to terrorist attacks. Existing interfaces to the WITS data support advanced search capabilities, and geolocation but lack functionality for identifying patterns and trends. To better support efficient browsing we have refined Juxter’s existing capabilities for filtering, selecting, and sorting elements and categories within the visualization.

  1. CMS Centres Worldwide - a New Collaborative Infrastructure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taylor, Lucas

    2011-12-01

    The CMS Experiment at the LHC has established a network of more than fifty inter-connected "CMS Centres" at CERN and in institutes in the Americas, Asia, Australasia, and Europe. These facilities are used by people doing CMS detector and computing grid operations, remote shifts, data quality monitoring and analysis, as well as education and outreach. We present the computing, software, and collaborative tools and videoconferencing systems. These include permanently running "telepresence" video links (hardware-based H.323, EVO and Vidyo), Webcasts, and generic Web tools such as CMS-TV for broadcasting live monitoring and outreach information. Being Web-based and experiment-independent, these systems could easily be extended to other organizations. We describe the experiences of using CMS Centres Worldwide in the CMS data-taking operations as well as for major media events with several hundred TV channels, radio stations, and many more press journalists simultaneously around the world.

  2. Towards worldwide height unification using ocean information

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woodworth, P. L.; Hughes, C. W.

    2015-03-01

    This paper describes how we are contributing to worldwide height system unification (WHSU) by using ocean models together with sea level (tide gauge and altimeter) information, geodetic (GPS and levelling) data, and new geoid models based on information from the GRACE and GOCE gravity missions, to understand how mean sea level (MSL) varies from place to place along the coast. For the last two centuries, MSL has been used to define datums for national levelling systems. However, there are many problems with this. One consequence of WHSU will be the substitution of conventional datums as a reference for heights with the use of geoid, as the only true "level" or datum. This work is within a number of GOCE-related activities funded by the European Space Agency. The study is focused on the coastlines of North America and Europe where the various datasets are most copious.

  3. World-wide aeronautical satellite communications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Peter; Smith, Keith

    1988-01-01

    INMARSAT decided to expand the spectrum covered by its new generation of satellites, INMARSAT-2, to include 1 MHz (subsequently increased to 3 MHz) of the spectrum designed for aeronautical use. It began a design study that led to the specifications for the system that is now being implemented. Subsequently, INMARSAT awarded contracts for the design of avionics and high gain antennas to a number of manufactures, while several of the signatories that provide ground equipment for communicating with the INMARSAT satellites are modifying their earth stations to work with the avionic equipment. As a resullt of these activities, a world-wide aeronautical satellite system supporting both voice and data will become operational in 1989.

  4. The worldwide epidemic of female obesity.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Sheona; Shaw, Dorothy

    2015-04-01

    The rapidly rising number of individuals who are overweight and obese has been called a worldwide epidemic of obesity with >35% of adults today considered to be overweight or obese. Women are more likely to be overweight and obese than their male counterparts, which has far-reaching effects on reproductive health and specifically pregnancy, with obese women facing an increased risk of gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, operative delivery, fetal macrosomia, and neonatal morbidity. The etiology of obesity is highly complex encompassing genetic, environmental, physiologic, cultural, political, and socioeconomic factors, making it challenging to develop effective interventions on both a local and global scale. This article describes the extent and the cost of the obesity epidemic, which, although historically seen as a disease of high-income countries, is now clearly a global epidemic that impacts low- and middle-income countries and indigenous groups who bear an ever-increasing burden of this disease. PMID:25487257

  5. Overview and forecast on forestry productions worldwide.

    PubMed

    Wenjun, Zhang

    2007-02-01

    Our world is largely dependent upon the forestry productions. Through the exploitation of forest reserves, we manufacture various industrial products, furniture, and obtain fuel and energy. Forestry productions should be conducted without large-scale deforestation and environmental degradation. In present study we perform a review and forecast analysis on forestry productions worldwide, with the objectives of providing an insight into the trend for several types of forestry productions in the future, and providing referential data for sustainable forestry productions and environmental management. Polynomial functions are used to fit trajectories of forestry productions since 1961 and forecasts during the coming 20 years are given in detail. If the past pattern continues, world fibreboard production would dramatically grow and reach 224,300,000 +/- 44,400,000 m(3) by the year 2020, an increase up to 240.7 to 408.9% as compared to the present level. Roundwood production of the world would change by -55.5 to 70.4% and reach 3,526,600,000 +/- 2,066,800,000 m(3) by 2020. In 2020 world production of sawlogs and veneer logs would change by -100 to 164.6% and reach 1,212,900,000 +/- 1,242,600,000 m(3). Global wood fuel production would change by -68.9 to 1.4% and reach 1,130,900,000 +/- 600,800,000 m(3) by 2020. Forestry productions in developed countries would largely surpass productions in developing countries in the near future. World forestry production grew since 1961 excluding wood fuel. Roundwood and wood fuel account for the critical proportions in the forestry productions. Wood fuel production has being declined and rapid growing of roundwood production has slowed in recent years. Widespread use of regenerative wood substitutes and worldwide afforestation against deforestation will be among the most effective ways to reduce deforestation and environment degradation associated with forestry productions. PMID:17219238

  6. WWT Ambassadors: Worldwide Telescope For Interactive Learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Udomprasert, Patricia S.; Goodman, A. A.; Wong, C.

    2012-01-01

    WorldWide Telescope (WWT) offers an unparalleled view of the world's store of online astronomical data. This free software weaves astronomical images from all wavelengths into an interface that resembles their natural context-the Sky-while offering deep opportunities to teach and learn the science behind the images. The WorldWide Telescope Ambassadors Program (WWTA) is an outreach initiative run by researchers at Harvard University and Microsoft Research. WWT Ambassadors are experts on Astronomy and Physics who use WWT to educate the public about astronomy and science. Ambassadors and learners alike use WWT to create dynamic, interactive Tours of the Universe, which are shared in schools, public venues, and online. Ambassador-created Tours are being made freely available and will ultimately form a comprehensive learning resource for Astronomy and Astrophysics. In this poster, we present summary results of WWTA's work in 6th-grade classrooms, reaching 400 students over the past 2 years. The WWTA Pilot compared learning outcomes for 80 students who participated in WWTA and 70 students at the same school and grade who only used traditional learning materials. After the six-week unit, twice as many "WWT” as "non-WWT” students understand complex three dimensional orbital relationships; and tremendous gains are seen in student interest in science overall, and astronomy in particular. In anonymous written surveys, 90% of the 6th-graders described WWT as "awesome,” "cool,” or "a fun way to learn science,” and said they would recommend WWT to their best friend. We outline new plans to develop and field-test WWT-based interactive visualization labs that teach students standards-based middle school space science topics, and we describe the development of an online community that serves as a resource for Ambassadors, teachers, and students across the US and beyond. Learn more about WWTA at: wwtambassadors.org

  7. Landfill aeration worldwide: Concepts, indications and findings

    SciTech Connect

    Ritzkowski, M.; Stegmann, R.

    2012-07-15

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Different landfill aeration concepts and accordant application areas are described. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Examples of full scale projects are provided for Europe, North-America and Asia. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Major project findings are summarised, including prospects and limitations. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Inconsistencies between laboratory and full scale results have been elaborated. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer An explanatory approach in connection with the inconsistencies is provided. - Abstract: The creation of sustainable landfills is a fundamental goal in waste management worldwide. In this connection landfill aeration contributes towards an accelerated, controlled and sustainable conversion of conventional anaerobic landfills into a biological stabilized state associated with a minimised emission potential. The technology has been successfully applied to landfills in Europe, North America and Asia, following different strategies depending on the geographical region, the specific legislation and the available financial resources. Furthermore, methodologies for the incorporation of landfill aeration into the carbon trade mechanisms have been developed in recent years. This manuscript gives an overview on existing concepts for landfill aeration; their application ranges and specifications. For all of the described concepts examples from different countries worldwide are provided, including details regarding their potentials and limitations. Some of the most important findings from these aeration projects are summarised and future research needs have been identified. It becomes apparent that there is a great demand for a systematisation of the available results and implications in order to further develop and optimise this very promising technology. The IWWG (International Waste Working Group) Task Group 'Landfill Aeration' contributes towards the achievement of this goal.

  8. A Mixture Reflecting Polybrominated Diphenyl Ether (PBDE) Profiles Detected in Human Follicular Fluid Significantly Affects Steroidogenesis and Induces Oxidative Stress in a Female Human Granulosa Cell Line.

    PubMed

    Lefevre, Pavine L C; Wade, Mike; Goodyer, Cindy; Hales, Barbara F; Robaire, Bernard

    2016-07-01

    Brominated flame retardants are incorporated into consumer products to prevent flame propagation. These compounds leach into the domestic environment, resulting in chronic exposure. Pregnancy failure is associated with high levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), a major class of brominated flame retardants, in human follicular fluid, raising serious questions regarding their impact on female fertility. Our goal was to elucidate the effects of a mixture of PBDEs, similar to the profile found in human follicular fluid, on an immortalized human granulosa cell line, the KGN cell line. We showed that cell viability was altered and oxidative stress was induced as reflected by increased reactive oxygen species formation at 100 μM of the PBDE mixture. Transcriptomic analysis revealed that PBDE treatments of 1, 5, and 20 μM altered the expression of several genes involved in the reactive oxygen species signaling pathway. Significant dose-dependent reductions in progesterone and estradiol levels in the culture medium were measured after PBDE treatment; in parallel, the expression of genes involved in estradiol metabolism, namely CYP1A1, was up-regulated by 5 and 20 μM of the PBDE mixture. Treatment with 20 μM PBDE also increased the expression and secretion of the proinflammatory factor, IL-6, into the KGN cell culture medium. Our results demonstrate that PBDEs can alter human granulosa cell functions by inducing oxidative stress and disrupting steroidogenesis. These results indicate that PBDEs may be detrimental to ovarian functions and thus may adversely affect female reproductive health after chronic exposure. PMID:27219277

  9. Do positive affectivity and boundary preferences matter for work-family enrichment? A study of human service workers.

    PubMed

    McNall, Laurel A; Scott, Lindsay D; Nicklin, Jessica M

    2015-01-01

    More individuals than ever are managing work and family roles, but relatively little research has been done exploring whether boundary preferences help individuals benefit from multiple role memberships. Drawing on Greenhaus and Powell's (2006) work-family enrichment theory, along with Boundary Theory (Ashforth, Kreiner, & Fugate, 2000) and Conservation of Resources Theory (Hobfoll, 2002), we explore the impact of personal characteristics as enablers of work-family enrichment, and in turn, work outcomes relevant to human service workers: turnover intentions and emotional exhaustion. In a 2-wave study of 161 human service employees, we found that individuals high in positive affectivity were more likely to experience both work-to-family and family to-work enrichment, whereas those with preferences toward integration were more likely to experience work-to-family enrichment (but not family to-work enrichment). In turn, work-to-family enrichment (but not family to-work enrichment) was related to lower turnover intentions and emotional exhaustion. Enrichment served as a mediating mechanism for only some of the hypothesized relationships. Implications for theory and practice are discussed. PMID:25347683

  10. A functional genetic variation of adenosine deaminase affects the duration and intensity of deep sleep in humans

    PubMed Central

    Rétey, J. V.; Adam, M.; Honegger, E.; Khatami, R.; Luhmann, U. F. O.; Jung, H. H.; Berger, W.; Landolt, H.-P.

    2005-01-01

    Slow, rhythmic oscillations (<5 Hz) in the sleep electroencephalogram may be a sign of synaptic plasticity occurring during sleep. The oscillations, referred to as slow-wave activity (SWA), reflect sleep need and sleep intensity. The amount of SWA is homeostatically regulated. It is enhanced after sleep loss and declines during sleep. Animal studies suggested that sleep need is genetically controlled, yet the physiological mechanisms remain unknown. Here we show in humans that a genetic variant of adenosine deaminase, which is associated with the reduced metabolism of adenosine to inosine, specifically enhances deep sleep and SWA during sleep. In contrast, a distinct polymorphism of the adenosine A2A receptor gene, which was associated with interindividual differences in anxiety symptoms after caffeine intake in healthy volunteers, affects the electroencephalogram during sleep and wakefulness in a non-state-specific manner. Our findings indicate a direct role of adenosine in human sleep homeostasis. Moreover, our data suggest that genetic variability in the adenosinergic system contributes to the interindividual variability in brain electrical activity during sleep and wakefulness. PMID:16221767

  11. Polymorphisms in human dopamine D2 receptor gene affect gene expression, splicing, and neuronal activity during working memory.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying; Bertolino, Alessandro; Fazio, Leonardo; Blasi, Giuseppe; Rampino, Antonio; Romano, Raffaella; Lee, Mei-Ling T; Xiao, Tao; Papp, Audrey; Wang, Danxin; Sadée, Wolfgang

    2007-12-18

    Subcortical dopamine D2 receptor (DRD2) signaling is implicated in cognitive processes and brain disorders, but the effect of DRD2 variants remains ambiguous. We measured allelic mRNA expression in postmortem human striatum and prefrontal cortex and then performed single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) scans of the DRD2 locus. A previously uncharacterized promoter SNP (rs12364283) located in a conserved suppressor region was associated with enhanced DRD2 expression, whereas previously studied DRD2 variants failed to affect expression. Moreover, two frequent intronic SNPs (rs2283265 and rs1076560) decreased expression of DRD2 short splice variant (expressed mainly presynaptically) relative to DRD2 long (postsynaptic), a finding reproduced in vitro by using minigene constructs. Being in strong linkage disequilibrium with each other, both intronic SNPs (but not rs12364283) were also associated with greater activity of striatum and prefrontal cortex measured with fMRI during working memory and with reduced performance in working memory and attentional control tasks in healthy humans. Our results identify regulatory DRD2 polymorphisms that modify mRNA expression and splicing and working memory pathways. PMID:18077373

  12. Wolf population dynamics in the U.S. Northern Rocky Mountains are affected by recruitment and human-caused mortality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gude, J.A.; Mitchell, M.S.; Russell, R.E.; Sime, C.A.; Bangs, E.E.; Mech, L.D.; Ream, R.R.

    2012-01-01

    Reliable analyses can help wildlife managers make good decisions, which are particularly critical for controversial decisions such as wolf (Canis lupus) harvest. Creel and Rotella (2010) recently predicted substantial population declines in Montana wolf populations due to harvest, in contrast to predictions made by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (MFWP). We replicated their analyses considering only those years in which field monitoring was consistent, and we considered the effect of annual variation in recruitment on wolf population growth. Rather than assuming constant rates, we used model selection methods to evaluate and incorporate models of factors driving recruitment and human-caused mortality rates in wolf populations in the Northern Rocky Mountains. Using data from 27 area-years of intensive wolf monitoring, we show that variation in both recruitment and human-caused mortality affect annual wolf population growth rates and that human-caused mortality rates have increased with the sizes of wolf populations. We document that recruitment rates have decreased over time, and we speculate that rates have decreased with increasing population sizes and/or that the ability of current field resources to document recruitment rates has recently become less successful as the number of wolves in the region has increased. Estimates of positive wolf population growth in Montana from our top models are consistent with field observations and estimates previously made by MFWP for 2008-2010, whereas the predictions for declining wolf populations of Creel and Rotella (2010) are not. Familiarity with limitations of raw data, obtained first-hand or through consultation with scientists who collected the data, helps generate more reliable inferences and conclusions in analyses of publicly available datasets. Additionally, development of efficient monitoring methods for wolves is a pressing need, so that analyses such as ours will be possible in future years when fewer resources

  13. Worldwide phylogenetic relationship of avian poxviruses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gyuranecz, Miklós; Foster, Jeffrey T.; Dán, Ádám; Ip, Hon S.; Egstad, Kristina F.; Parker, Patricia G.; Higashiguchi, Jenni M.; Skinner, Michael A.; Höfle, Ursula; Kreizinger, Zsuzsa; Dorrestein, Gerry M.; Solt, Szabolcs; Sós, Endre; Kim, Young Jun; Uhart, Marcela; Pereda, Ariel; González-Hein, Gisela; Hidalgo, Hector; Blanco, Juan-Manuel; Erdélyi, Károly

    2013-01-01

    Poxvirus infections have been found in 230 species of wild and domestic birds worldwide in both terrestrial and marine environments. This ubiquity raises the question of how infection has been transmitted and globally dispersed. We present a comprehensive global phylogeny of 111 novel poxvirus isolates in addition to all available sequences from GenBank. Phylogenetic analysis of Avipoxvirus genus has traditionally relied on one gene region (4b core protein). In this study we have expanded the analyses to include a second locus (DNA polymerase gene), allowing for a more robust phylogenetic framework, finer genetic resolution within specific groups and the detection of potential recombination. Our phylogenetic results reveal several major features of avipoxvirus evolution and ecology and propose an updated avipoxvirus taxonomy, including three novel subclades. The characterization of poxviruses from 57 species of birds in this study extends the current knowledge of their host range and provides the first evidence of the phylogenetic effect of genetic recombination of avipoxviruses. The repeated occurrence of avian family or order-specific grouping within certain clades (e.g. starling poxvirus, falcon poxvirus, raptor poxvirus, etc.) indicates a marked role of host adaptation, while the sharing of poxvirus species within prey-predator systems emphasizes the capacity for cross-species infection and limited host adaptation. Our study provides a broad and comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of the Avipoxvirus genus, an ecologically and environmentally important viral group, to formulate a genome sequencing strategy that will clarify avipoxvirus taxonomy.

  14. Reference worldwide model for antineutrinos from reactors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baldoncini, Marica; Callegari, Ivan; Fiorentini, Giovanni; Mantovani, Fabio; Ricci, Barbara; Strati, Virginia; Xhixha, Gerti

    2015-03-01

    Antineutrinos produced at nuclear reactors constitute a severe source of background for the detection of geoneutrinos, which bring to the Earth's surface information about natural radioactivity in the whole planet. In this framework, we provide a reference worldwide model for antineutrinos from reactors, in view of reactors operational records yearly published by the International Atomic Energy Agency. We evaluate the expected signal from commercial reactors for ongoing (KamLAND and Borexino), planned (SNO +), and proposed (Juno, RENO-50, LENA, and Hanohano) experimental sites. Uncertainties related to reactor antineutrino production, propagation, and detection processes are estimated using a Monte Carlo-based approach, which provides an overall site-dependent uncertainty on the signal in the geoneutrino energy window on the order of 3%. We also implement the off-equilibrium correction to the reference reactor spectra associated with the long-lived isotopes, and we estimate a 2.4% increase of the unoscillated event rate in the geoneutrino energy window due to the storage of spent nuclear fuels in the cooling pools. We predict that the research reactors contribute to less than 0.2% to the commercial reactor signal in the investigated 14 sites. We perform a multitemporal analysis of the expected reactor signal over a time lapse of ten years using reactor operational records collected in a comprehensive database published at www.fe.infn.it/antineutrino.

  15. Worldwide Geomagnetic Data Collection and Management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandea, Mioara; Papitashvili, Vladimir

    2009-11-01

    Geomagnetic data provided by different platforms piece together a global picture of Earth's magnetic field and its interaction with geospace. Furthermore, a great diversity of the geomagnetic field changes, from secular (over decades to centuries) to short time variations (down to minutes and seconds), can be detected only through continued observations. An international effort to watch and record geomagnetic changes first began in the 1830s with a network of scientific observers organized by Karl Friedrich Gauss in Germany, and this effort has continued since then. One of the most remarkable achievements in understanding the geomagnetic field morphology and time behavior was made possible by the International Geophysical Year (IGY), an exploration and research effort that lasted for 18 months, starting on 1 July 1957. The IGY encompassed 11 geoscience disciplines, including geomagnetism. The IGY has represented a giant step forward in the quality and quantity of worldwide geomagnetic measurements, as well as in the widespread interest in magnetic measurements. A half century of probing the geomagnetic field spatial and temporal variations has produced a number of outstanding results, and the interested reader can find recent reviews on various geomagnetic field topics (from measurements to modeling) in Encyclopedia of Geomagnetism and Paleomagnetism [Gubbins and Herrero-Bervera, 2007] or Treatise on Geophysics: Geomagnetism [Kono, 2007].

  16. CMS centres worldwide: A new collaborative infrastructure

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor, Lucas; Gottschalk, Erik; /Fermilab

    2010-01-01

    The CMS Experiment at the LHC is establishing a global network of inter-connected 'CMS Centres' for controls, operations and monitoring. These support: (1) CMS data quality monitoring, detector calibrations, and analysis; and (2) computing operations for the processing, storage and distribution of CMS data. We describe the infrastructure, computing, software, and communications systems required to create an effective and affordable CMS Centre. We present our highly successful operations experiences with the major CMS Centres at CERN, Fermilab, and DESY during the LHC first beam data-taking and cosmic ray commissioning work. The status of the various centres already operating or under construction in Asia, Europe, Russia, South America, and the USA is also described. We emphasise the collaborative communications aspects. For example, virtual co-location of experts in CMS Centres Worldwide is achieved using high-quality permanently-running 'telepresence' video links. Generic Web-based tools have been developed and deployed for monitoring, control, display management and outreach.

  17. Small world picture of worldwide seismic events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira, Douglas S. R.; Papa, Andrés R. R.; Menezes, Ronaldo

    2014-08-01

    The understanding of long-distance relations between seismic activities has for long been of interest to seismologists and geologists. In this paper we have used data from the worldwide earthquake catalog for the period between 1972 and 2011 to generate a network of sites around the world for earthquakes with magnitude m≥4.5 in the Richter scale. After the network construction, we have analyzed the results under two viewpoints. First, in contrast to previous works, which have considered just small areas, we showed that the best fitting for networks of seismic events is not a pure power law, but a power law with exponential cutoff; we also have found that the global network presents small-world properties. Second, we have found that the time intervals between successive earthquakes have a cumulative probability distribution well fitted by nontraditional functional forms. The implications of our results are significant because they seem to indicate that seisms around the world are not independent. In this paper we provide evidence to support this argument.

  18. Unintended pregnancy: worldwide levels, trends, and outcomes.

    PubMed

    Singh, Susheela; Sedgh, Gilda; Hussain, Rubina

    2010-12-01

    Unintended pregnancy can carry serious consequences for women and their families. We estimate the incidence of pregnancy by intention status and outcome at worldwide, regional, and subregional levels for 2008, and we assess recent trends since 1995. Numbers of births are based on United Nations estimates. Induced abortions are estimated by projecting from recent trends. A model-based approach is used to estimate miscarriages. The planning status of births is estimated using nationally representative and small-scale surveys of 80 countries. Of the 208 million pregnancies that occurred in 2008, we estimate that 41 percent were unintended. The unintended pregnancy rate fell by 29 percent in developed regions and by 20 percent in developing regions. The highest unintended pregnancy rates were found for Eastern and Middle Africa and the lowest for Southern and Western Europe and Eastern Asia. North America is the only region in which overall and unintended pregnancy rates have not declined. We conclude with a brief discussion of global and regional program and policy implications. PMID:21465725

  19. Worldwide supercritical power plants: Status and future

    SciTech Connect

    Gorokhov, V.A.; Ramezan, M.; Ruth, L.A.; Kim, S.S.

    1999-07-01

    During the last decade leading industrial countries initiated a new wave of research and development on supercritical (SC) steam power plants. This new interest is accompanied by the jump from SC steam parameters to ultra-supercritical (USC) parameters and was initiated mostly due to the increase in cost of fuel on the world market, and by increased environmental regulations including reduction of greenhouse gases. As a result, a significant number of new pulverized coal (PC) power units with increased efficiency and reduced emissions were installed in the last two decades, and a few more are planned to be installed in the near future. Different driving forces are responsible for development and implementation of highly efficient advanced PC-fired systems: need for new capacity, quality and cost of fuel, level of technology development, environmental requirements, and internal situation with regard to power supply (deregulation). For example, in Europe, Germany in particular, controlling CO{sub 2} is a major issue in any new installation, while in Japan economics is the major issue as the costs of imported fuels are high, and there are greater economic incentives for efficiency improvement. This paper discusses the status of existing and planned SC and USC power plants worldwide and their technical and environmental performance.

  20. Worldwide Phylogenetic Relationship of Avian Poxviruses

    PubMed Central

    Foster, Jeffrey T.; Dán, Ádám; Ip, Hon S.; Egstad, Kristina F.; Parker, Patricia G.; Higashiguchi, Jenni M.; Skinner, Michael A.; Höfle, Ursula; Kreizinger, Zsuzsa; Dorrestein, Gerry M.; Solt, Szabolcs; Sós, Endre; Kim, Young Jun; Uhart, Marcela; Pereda, Ariel; González-Hein, Gisela; Hidalgo, Hector; Blanco, Juan-Manuel; Erdélyi, Károly

    2013-01-01

    Poxvirus infections have been found in 230 species of wild and domestic birds worldwide in both terrestrial and marine environments. This ubiquity raises the question of how infection has been transmitted and globally dispersed. We present a comprehensive global phylogeny of 111 novel poxvirus isolates in addition to all available sequences from GenBank. Phylogenetic analysis of the Avipoxvirus genus has traditionally relied on one gene region (4b core protein). In this study we expanded the analyses to include a second locus (DNA polymerase gene), allowing for a more robust phylogenetic framework, finer genetic resolution within specific groups, and the detection of potential recombination. Our phylogenetic results reveal several major features of avipoxvirus evolution and ecology and propose an updated avipoxvirus taxonomy, including three novel subclades. The characterization of poxviruses from 57 species of birds in this study extends the current knowledge of their host range and provides the first evidence of the phylogenetic effect of genetic recombination of avipoxviruses. The repeated occurrence of avian family or order-specific grouping within certain clades (e.g., starling poxvirus, falcon poxvirus, raptor poxvirus, etc.) indicates a marked role of host adaptation, while the sharing of poxvirus species within prey-predator systems emphasizes the capacity for cross-species infection and limited host adaptation. Our study provides a broad and comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of the Avipoxvirus genus, an ecologically and environmentally important viral group, to formulate a genome sequencing strategy that will clarify avipoxvirus taxonomy. PMID:23408635

  1. Worldwide emergence of multiple clades of enterovirus 68

    PubMed Central

    Firth, Cadhla; Madhi, Shabir A.; Howie, Stephen R. C.; Wu, Winfred; Sall, Amadou Alpha; Haq, Saddef; Briese, Thomas; Lipkin, W. Ian

    2012-01-01

    Human enterovirus 68 (EV-D68) is a historically rarely reported virus linked with respiratory disease. In the past 3 years, a large increase in respiratory disease associated with EV-D68 has been reported, with documented outbreaks in North America, Europe and Asia. In several outbreaks, genetic differences were identified among the circulating strains, indicating the presence of multiple clades. In this report, we analyse archived and novel EV-D68 strains from Africa and the USA, obtained from patients with respiratory illness. Phylogenetic analysis of all EV-D68 sequences indicates that, over the past two decades, multiple clades of the virus have emerged and spread rapidly worldwide. All clades appear to be currently circulating and contributing to respiratory disease. PMID:22694903

  2. Discovering biomedical relations utilizing the World-wide Web.

    PubMed

    Mukherjea, Sougata; Sahay, Saurav

    2006-01-01

    To crate a Semantic Web for Life Sciences discovering relations between biomedical entities is essential. Journals and conference proceedings represent the dominant mechanisms of reporting newly discovered biomedical interactions. The unstructured nature of such publications makes it difficult to utilize data mining or knowledge discovery techniques to automatically incorporate knowledge from these publications into the ontologies. On the other hand, since biomedical information is growing explosively, it is difficult to have human curators manually extract all the information from literature. In this paper we present techniques to automatically discover biomedical relations from the World-wide Web. For this purpose we retrieve relevant information from Web Search engines using various lexico-syntactic patterns as queries. Experiments are presented to show the usefulness of our techniques. PMID:17094237

  3. Generation of a Genome Scale Lentiviral Vector Library for EF1α Promoter-Driven Expression of Human ORFs and Identification of Human Genes Affecting Viral Titer

    PubMed Central

    Škalamera, Dubravka; Dahmer, Mareike; Purdon, Amy S.; Wilson, Benjamin M.; Ranall, Max V.; Blumenthal, Antje; Gabrielli, Brian; Gonda, Thomas J.

    2012-01-01

    The bottleneck in elucidating gene function through high-throughput gain-of-function genome screening is the limited availability of comprehensive libraries for gene overexpression. Lentiviral vectors are the most versatile and widely used vehicles for gene expression in mammalian cells. Lentiviral supernatant libraries for genome screening are commonly generated in the HEK293T cell line, yet very little is known about the effect of introduced sequences on the produced viral titer, which we have shown to be gene dependent. We have generated an arrayed lentiviral vector library for the expression of 17,030 human proteins by using the GATEWAY® cloning system to transfer ORFs from the Mammalian Gene Collection into an EF1alpha promoter-dependent lentiviral expression vector. This promoter was chosen instead of the more potent and widely used CMV promoter, because it is less prone to silencing and provides more stable long term expression. The arrayed lentiviral clones were used to generate viral supernatant by packaging in the HEK293T cell line. The efficiency of transfection and virus production was estimated by measuring the fluorescence of IRES driven GFP, co-expressed with the ORFs. More than 90% of cloned ORFs produced sufficient virus for downstream screening applications. We identified genes which consistently produced very high or very low viral titer. Supernatants from select clones that were either high or low virus producers were tested on a range of cell lines. Some of the low virus producers, including two previously uncharacterized proteins were cytotoxic to HEK293T cells. The library we have constructed presents a powerful resource for high-throughput gain-of-function screening of the human genome and drug-target discovery. Identification of human genes that affect lentivirus production may lead to improved technology for gene expression using lentiviral vectors. PMID:23251614

  4. Mixed Progress in Worldwide Fight Against HIV/AIDS

    MedlinePlus

    ... html Mixed Progress in Worldwide Fight Against HIV/AIDS Deaths continue 10-year decline, but new infections ... 19, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The number of HIV/AIDS deaths worldwide each year has fallen since peaking ...

  5. Conservation Kickstart- Catalyzing Conservation Initiatives Worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Treinish, G.

    2014-12-01

    Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation (ASC) is a nonprofit organization that collects environmental data to catalyze conservation initiatives worldwide. Adventure athletes have the skills and motivation to reach the most remote corners of the world. ASC utilizes those skills to provide the scientific community with data while providing the outdoor community with purpose beyond the personal high of reaching a summit or rowing across an ocean. We carefully select projects, choosing partnerships that will maximize the impact of ASC volunteers. Each project must have a clear path to a tangible conservation outcome and demonstrate a clear need for our brand of volunteers. We partner with government agencies, universities, and independant reseachers to kickstart data collection efforts around the world. Last year, through a partnership with the Olympic National Forest, 20 volunteers from the Seattle area set up and monitored camera traps in an effort to survey for costal Pacific marten. Our work led to the species' listing as "critically imperiled" with NatureServe. A partnership with the inaugural Great Pacific Race, engaging trans-Pacific rowing teams, searched for microplastics in the Pacific Ocean as part of our ongoing microplastics campaign. In a multi-year partnership with the American Prairie Reserve (APR), ASC volunteer crews live and work on the Reserve collecting wildlife data year round. The data we obtain directly informs the Reserve's wildlife management decisions. On this project, our crews have safely and effectively navigated temperature extremes from -30 degrees to 100+ degrees while traveling in a remote location. We are currently scouting projects in the Okavango Delta of Botswana and the rainforest of Suriname where we will be able to cover large amounts of area in a short periord of time. ASC is at the crossroads of the adventure and coservation science communities. Our approach of answering specific questions by using highly skilled and

  6. Worldwide Differences in Regulations of Clozapine Use.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Jimmi; Young, Corina; Ifteni, Petru; Kishimoto, Taishiro; Xiang, Yu-Tao; Schulte, Peter F J; Correll, Christoph U; Taylor, David

    2016-02-01

    Clozapine remains the drug of choice for treatment-resistant schizophrenia. As a consequence of its long history and complex pharmacology, we suspected wide variation in the regulations of clozapine use across different countries. The summaries of product characteristics (SPCs) from clozapine manufacturers, as well as local and national guidelines in the following selected countries, were reviewed: China, Denmark, Ireland, Japan, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Romania, the UK and the US. Clozapine is available as tablets in all countries, as an oral suspension in all included countries, with the exception of Japan and Romania, as orally disintegrating tablets in the US and China, and as an injectable in The Netherlands. General practitioner prescribing is only available in The Netherlands, New Zealand, the UK and the US, although with some restrictions in some of the countries. In Ireland and China, clozapine is only dispensed through hospital pharmacies. Hematological monitoring is mandatory in all countries but varies substantially in frequency, e.g. in Denmark hematologic monitoring is mandatory weekly for 18 weeks, followed by monthly monitoring, compared with Japan where blood work is required weekly for 26 weeks, followed by biweekly hematologic monitoring thereafter. In most included countries, with the exception of Denmark, Romania and The Netherlands, the manufacturer provides a mandatory hematological monitoring database, and dispensing of clozapine is not permissible without acceptable white blood count and absolute neutrophil count results. Local guidelines in New Zealand recommend echocardiography and routine troponin during the initial phases of treatment with clozapine. Regulations of clozapine vary widely with regard to rules of prescribing and monitoring. A worldwide update and harmonization of these regulations is recommended. PMID:26884144

  7. Worldwide epidemiology of liver hydatidosis including the Mediterranean area

    PubMed Central

    Grosso, Giuseppe; Gruttadauria, Salvatore; Biondi, Antonio; Marventano, Stefano; Mistretta, Antonio

    2012-01-01

    The worldwide incidence and prevalence of cystic echinococcosis have fallen dramatically over the past several decades. Nonetheless, infection with Echinococcus granulosus (E. granulosus) remains a major public health issue in several countries and regions, even in places where it was previously at low levels, as a result of a reduction of control programmes due to economic problems and lack of resources. Geographic distribution differs by country and region depending on the presence in that country of large numbers of nomadic or semi-nomadic sheep and goat flocks that represent the intermediate host of the parasite, and their close contact with the final host, the dog, which mostly provides the transmission of infection to humans. The greatest prevalence of cystic echinococcosis in human and animal hosts is found in countries of the temperate zones, including several parts of Eurasia (the Mediterranean regions, southern and central parts of Russia, central Asia, China), Australia, some parts of America (especially South America) and north and east Africa. Echinococcosis is currently considered an endemic zoonotic disease in the Mediterranean region. The most frequent strain associated with human cystic echinococcosis appears to be the common sheep strain (G1). This strain appears to be widely distributed in all continents. The purpose of this review is to examine the distribution of E. granulosus and the epidemiology of a re-emerging disease such as cystic echinococcosis. PMID:22509074

  8. Can the usage of human growth hormones affect facial appearance and the accuracy of face recognition systems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rose, Jake; Martin, Michael; Bourlai, Thirimachos

    2014-06-01

    In law enforcement and security applications, the acquisition of face images is critical in producing key trace evidence for the successful identification of potential threats. The goal of the study is to demonstrate that steroid usage significantly affects human facial appearance and hence, the performance of commercial and academic face recognition (FR) algorithms. In this work, we evaluate the performance of state-of-the-art FR algorithms on two unique face image datasets of subjects before (gallery set) and after (probe set) steroid (or human growth hormone) usage. For the purpose of this study, datasets of 73 subjects were created from multiple sources found on the Internet, containing images of men and women before and after steroid usage. Next, we geometrically pre-processed all images of both face datasets. Then, we applied image restoration techniques on the same face datasets, and finally, we applied FR algorithms in order to match the pre-processed face images of our probe datasets against the face images of the gallery set. Experimental results demonstrate that only a specific set of FR algorithms obtain the most accurate results (in terms of the rank-1 identification rate). This is because there are several factors that influence the efficiency of face matchers including (i) the time lapse between the before and after image pre-processing and restoration face photos, (ii) the usage of different drugs (e.g. Dianabol, Winstrol, and Decabolan), (iii) the usage of different cameras to capture face images, and finally, (iv) the variability of standoff distance, illumination and other noise factors (e.g. motion noise). All of the previously mentioned complicated scenarios make clear that cross-scenario matching is a very challenging problem and, thus, further investigation is required.

  9. Common polymorphism in a highly variable region upstream of the human lactase gene affects DNA-protein interactions.

    PubMed

    Hollox, E J; Poulter, M; Wang, Y; Krause, A; Swallow, D M

    1999-01-01

    In most mammals lactase activity declines after weaning when lactose is no longer part of the diet, but in many humans lactase activity persists into adult life. The difference responsible for this phenotypic polymorphism has been shown to be cis-acting to the lactase gene. The causal sequence difference has not been found so far, but a number of polymorphic sites have been found within and near to the lactase gene. We have shown previously that in Europeans there are two polymorphic sites in a small region between 974 bp and 852 bp upstream from the start of transcription, which are detectable by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). In this study, analysis of individuals from five other population groups by the same DGGE method reveals four new alleles resulting from three additional nucleotide changes within this very small region. Analysis of sequence in four primate species and comparison with the published pig sequence shows that the overall sequence of this highly variable human region is conserved in pigs as well as primates, and that it lies within a 1kb region which has been shown to control lactase downregulation in pigs. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) studies were carried out to determine whether common variation affected protein-DNA binding and several binding activities were found using this technique. A novel two base-pair deletion that is common in most populations tested, but is not present in Europeans, caused no change in binding activity. However, a previously published C to T transition at -958bp dramatically reduced binding activity, although the functional significance of this is not clear. PMID:10573012

  10. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma activators affect the maturation of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells.

    PubMed

    Gosset, P; Charbonnier, A S; Delerive, P; Fontaine, J; Staels, B; Pestel, J; Tonnel, A B; Trottein, F

    2001-10-01

    Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARgamma ), a member of the nuclear receptor superfamily, has recently been described as a modulator of macrophage functions and as an inhibitor of T cell proliferation. Here, we investigated the role of PPARgamma in dendritic cells (DC), the most potent antigen-presenting cells. We showed that PPARgamma is highly expressed in immature human monocyte-derived DC (MDDC) and that it may affect the immunostimulatory function of MDDC stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or via CD40 ligand (CD40L). We found that the synthetic PPARgamma agonist rosiglitazone (as well as pioglitazone and troglitazone) significantly increases on LPS- and CD40L-activated MDDC, the surface expression of CD36 (by 184% and 104%, respectively) and CD86 (by 54% and 48%), whereas it reduces the synthesis of CD80 (by 42% and 42%). Moreover, activation of PPARgamma resulted in a dramatic decreased secretion of the Th1-promoting factor IL-12 in LPS- and CD40L-stimulated cells (by 47% and 62%), while the production of IL-1beta, TNF-alpha, IL-6 and IL-10 was unaffected. Finally, PPARgamma ligands down-modulate the synthesis of IFN-gamma -inducible protein-10 (recently termed as CXCL10) and RANTES (CCL5), both chemokines involved in the recruitment of Th1 lymphocytes (by 49% and 30%), but not the levels of the Th2 cell-attracting chemokines,macrophage-derived chemokine (CCL22) and thymus and activation regulated chemokine (CCL17), in mature MDDC. Taken together, our data suggest that activation of PPARgamma in human DC may have an impact in the orientation of primary and secondary immune responses by favoring type 2 responses. PMID:11592060

  11. Antigen presentation of detergent free glutamate decarboxylase (GAD65) is affected by human serum albumin as carrier protein

    PubMed Central

    Steed, Jordan; Gilliam, Lisa K.; Harris, Robert A.; Lernmark, Åke; Hampe, Christiane S.

    2008-01-01

    1. Summary The smaller isoform of glutamate decarboxylase (GAD65) is a major autoantigen in type 1 diabetes (TID). Its hydrophobic character requires detergent to keep the protein in solution, which complicates studies of antigen processing and presentation. In this study an attempt was made to replace detergent with human serum albumin (HSA) for in vitro antigen presentation. Different preparations of recombinant human GAD65 complexed with HSA were incubated with Priess B cells (HLA DRB1*0401) and antigen presentation was tested with HLA DRB1*0401-restricted and epitope-specific T33.1 (GAD65 epitope 274-286) and T35 (GAD65 epitope 115-127) T cell hybridomas. Specific epitope recognition by T33.1 (274-286) and T35 (115-127) cells varied between the different GAD65/HSA preparations, and a reverse pattern of antigen presentation were detected by the two hybridoma. The HSA-specific T-cell hybridoma 17.9 response to the different GAD65/HSA preparations followed the same pattern as that observed for the T33.1 cells. The content of immunoreactive GAD65 measured with four GAD65 antibodies indicated that the lowest GAD65 concentration resulted in the highest 274-286, but the lowest 115-127 presentation. This suggests that HSA-GAD65 complexes qualitatively affect the epitope specificity of GAD65 presentation. HSA may enhance the 274-286 epitope presentation, while suppressing the 115-127 epitope. PMID:18353353

  12. Transcriptional Repression by the BRG1-SWI/SNF Complex Affects the Pluripotency of Human Embryonic Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xiaoli; Li, Bing; Li, Wenguo; Ma, Lijuan; Zheng, Dongyan; Li, Leping; Yang, Weijing; Chu, Min; Chen, Wei; Mailman, Richard B.; Zhu, Jun; Fan, Guoping; Archer, Trevor K.; Wang, Yuan

    2014-01-01

    Summary The SWI/SNF complex plays an important role in mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs), but it remains to be determined whether this complex is required for the pluripotency of human ESCs (hESCs). Using RNAi, we demonstrated that depletion of BRG1, the catalytic subunit of the SWI/SNF complex, led to impaired self-renewing ability and dysregulated lineage specification of hESCs. A unique composition of the BRG1-SWI/SNF complex in hESCs was further defined by the presence of BRG1, BAF250A, BAF170, BAF155, BAF53A, and BAF47. Genome-wide expression analyses revealed that BRG1 participated in a broad range of biological processes in hESCs through pathways different from those in mESCs. In addition, chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) demonstrated that BRG1 played a repressive role in transcriptional regulation by modulating the acetylation levels of H3K27 at the enhancers of lineage-specific genes. Our data thus provide valuable insights into molecular mechanisms by which transcriptional repression affects the self-renewal and differentiation of hESCs. PMID:25241744

  13. Human CLP1 mutations alter tRNA biogenesis affecting both peripheral and central nervous system function

    PubMed Central

    Karaca, Ender; Weitzer, Stefan; Pehlivan, Davut; Shiraishi, Hiroshi; Gogakos, Tasos; Hanada, Toshikatsu; Jhangiani, Shalini N.; Wiszniewski, Wojciech; Withers, Marjorie; Campbell, Ian M.; Erdin, Serkan; Isikay, Sedat; Franco, Luis M.; Gonzaga-Jauregui, Claudia; Gambin, Tomasz; Gelowani, Violet; Hunter, Jill V.; Yesil, Gozde; Koparir, Erkan; Yilmaz, Sarenur; Brown, Miguel; Briskin, Daniel; Hafner, Markus; Morozov, Pavel; Farazi, Thalia A.; Bernreuther, Christian; Glatzel, Markus; Trattnig, Siegfried; Friske, Joachim; Kronnerwetter, Claudia; Bainbridge, Matthew N.; Gezdirici, Alper; Seven, Mehmet; Muzny, Donna M.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Ozen, Mustafa; Clausen, Tim; Tuschl, Thomas; Yuksel, Adnan; Hess, Andreas; Gibbs, Richard A.; Martinez, Javier; Penninger, Josef M.; Lupski, James R.

    2014-01-01

    CLP1 is a RNA kinase involved in tRNA splicing. Recently, CLP1 kinase-dead mice were shown to display a neuromuscular disorder with loss of motor neurons and muscle paralysis. Human genome analyses now identified a CLP1 homozygous missense mutation (p.R140H) in five unrelated families, leading to a loss of CLP1 interaction with the tRNA splicing endonuclease (TSEN) complex, largely reduced pre-tRNA cleavage activity, and accumulation of linear tRNA introns. The affected individuals develop severe motor-sensory defects, cortical dysgenesis and microcephaly. Mice carrying kinase-dead CLP1 also displayed microcephaly and reduced cortical brain volume due to the enhanced cell death of neuronal progenitors that is associated with reduced numbers of cortical neurons. Our data elucidate a novel neurological syndrome defined by CLP1 mutations that impair tRNA splicing. Reduction of a founder mutation to homozygosity illustrates the importance of rare variations in disease and supports the clan genomics hypothesis. PMID:24766809

  14. Surface Chemical Gradient Affects the Differentiation of Human Adipose-Derived Stem Cells via ERK1/2 Signaling Pathway.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xujie; Shi, Shengjun; Feng, Qingling; Bachhuka, Akash; He, Wei; Huang, Qianli; Zhang, Ranran; Yang, Xing; Vasilev, Krasimir

    2015-08-26

    To understand the role of surface chemistry on cell behavior and the associated molecular mechanisms, we developed and utilized a surface chemical gradient of amine functional groups by carefully adjusting the gas composition of 1,7-octadiene (OD) and allylamine (AA) of the plasma phase above a moving substrate. The chemical gradient surface used in the present work shows an increasing N/C ratio and wettability from the OD side toward the AA side with no change in surface topography. Under standard culture conditions (with serum), human adipose-derived stem cells (hASCs) adhesion and spreading area increased toward the AA side of the gradient. However, there were no differences in cell behavior in the absence of serum. These results, supported by the trends in proteins adsorption on the gradient surface, demonstrated that surface chemistry affects the response of hASCs through cell-adhesive serum proteins, rather than interacting directly with the cells. The expression of p-ERK and the osteogenic differentiation increased toward the AA side of the gradient, while adipogenic differentiation decreased in the same direction; however, when the activation of ERK1/2 was blocked by PD98059, the levels of osteogenic or adipogenic differentiation on different regions of the chemical gradient were the same. This indicates that ERK1/2 may be an important downstream signaling pathway of surface chemistry directed stem cell fate. PMID:26237746

  15. Arousal regulation and affective adaptation to human responsiveness by a robot that explores and learns a novel environment.

    PubMed

    Hiolle, Antoine; Lewis, Matthew; Cañamero, Lola

    2014-01-01

    In the context of our work in developmental robotics regarding robot-human caregiver interactions, in this paper we investigate how a "baby" robot that explores and learns novel environments can adapt its affective regulatory behavior of soliciting help from a "caregiver" to the preferences shown by the caregiver in terms of varying responsiveness. We build on two strands of previous work that assessed independently (a) the differences between two "idealized" robot profiles-a "needy" and an "independent" robot-in terms of their use of a caregiver as a means to regulate the "stress" (arousal) produced by the exploration and learning of a novel environment, and (b) the effects on the robot behaviors of two caregiving profiles varying in their responsiveness-"responsive" and "non-responsive"-to the regulatory requests of the robot. Going beyond previous work, in this paper we (a) assess the effects that the varying regulatory behavior of the two robot profiles has on the exploratory and learning patterns of the robots; (b) bring together the two strands previously investigated in isolation and take a step further by endowing the robot with the capability to adapt its regulatory behavior along the "needy" and "independent" axis as a function of the varying responsiveness of the caregiver; and (c) analyze the effects that the varying regulatory behavior has on the exploratory and learning patterns of the adaptive robot. PMID:24860492

  16. Interleukin 22 early affects keratinocyte differentiation, but not proliferation, in a three-dimensional model of normal human skin.

    PubMed

    Donetti, Elena; Cornaghi, Laura; Arnaboldi, Francesca; Landoni, Federica; Romagnoli, Paolo; Mastroianni, Nicolino; Pescitelli, Leonardo; Baruffaldi Preis, Franz W; Prignano, Francesca

    2016-07-15

    Interleukin (IL)-22 is a pro-inflammatory cytokine driving the progression of the psoriatic lesion with other cytokines, as Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF)-alpha and IL-17. Our study was aimed at evaluating the early effect of IL-22 alone or in combination with TNF-alpha and IL-17 by immunofluorescence on i) keratinocyte (KC) proliferation, ii) terminal differentiation biomarkers as keratin (K) 10 and 17 expression, iii) intercellular junctions. Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) analysis was performed. A model of human skin culture reproducing a psoriatic microenvironment was used. Plastic surgery explants were obtained from healthy young women (n=7) after informed consent. Fragments were divided before adding IL-22 or a combination of the three cytokines, and harvested 24 (T24), 48 (T48), and 72 (T72)h later. From T24, in IL-22 samples we detected a progressive decrease in K10 immunostaining in the spinous layer paralleled by K17 induction. By TEM, after IL-22 incubation, keratin aggregates were evident in the perinuclear area. Occludin immunostaining was not homogeneously distributed. Conversely, KC proliferation was not inhibited by IL-22 alone, but only by the combination of cytokines. Our results suggest that IL-22 affects keratinocyte terminal differentiation, whereas, in order to induce a proliferation impairment, a more complex psoriatic-like microenvironment is needed. PMID:27207586

  17. Affective components of the human-animal relationship in animal husbandry: development and validation of a questionnaire.

    PubMed

    Porcher, Jocelyne; Cousson-Gélie, Florence; Dantzer, Robert

    2004-08-01

    The aim of the present study was to identify the main dimensions of the human-animal relationship in animal husbandry and to test the hypothesis of a coherent system linking attitudes and feelings. A second objective was to assess interindividual differences which could be linked to socioenvironmental or personal factors. The 26-item questionnaire was administered to 197 animal farmers (143 men, 54 women, 3.8% under 25 years old, 45.2% under 40 years, 44.2% under 60 years and 7.1% over 60 years). To include even farmers not in the official agricultural registries, we used a random selection procedure. A principal component analysis of responses followed by varimax rotation yielded two factors accounting for 30.7% of the total variance, a Friendship factor and a Power relationship factor. Significant differences on the Friendship factor were observed between groups by sex of farmers, education, size of the production system, and region of production. There were also differences on the Power relationship factor between groups by age and education. These results validate a questionnaire with 21 items, allowing measurement of positive and negative affects of farmers towards their animals. PMID:15460383

  18. Arousal regulation and affective adaptation to human responsiveness by a robot that explores and learns a novel environment

    PubMed Central

    Hiolle, Antoine; Lewis, Matthew; Cañamero, Lola

    2014-01-01

    In the context of our work in developmental robotics regarding robot–human caregiver interactions, in this paper we investigate how a “baby” robot that explores and learns novel environments can adapt its affective regulatory behavior of soliciting help from a “caregiver” to the preferences shown by the caregiver in terms of varying responsiveness. We build on two strands of previous work that assessed independently (a) the differences between two “idealized” robot profiles—a “needy” and an “independent” robot—in terms of their use of a caregiver as a means to regulate the “stress” (arousal) produced by the exploration and learning of a novel environment, and (b) the effects on the robot behaviors of two caregiving profiles varying in their responsiveness—“responsive” and “non-responsive”—to the regulatory requests of the robot. Going beyond previous work, in this paper we (a) assess the effects that the varying regulatory behavior of the two robot profiles has on the exploratory and learning patterns of the robots; (b) bring together the two strands previously investigated in isolation and take a step further by endowing the robot with the capability to adapt its regulatory behavior along the “needy” and “independent” axis as a function of the varying responsiveness of the caregiver; and (c) analyze the effects that the varying regulatory behavior has on the exploratory and learning patterns of the adaptive robot. PMID:24860492

  19. How human practices have affected vector-borne diseases in the past: a study of malaria transmission in Alpine valleys

    PubMed Central

    Sérandour, Julien; Girel, Jacky; Boyer, Sebastien; Ravanel, Patrick; Lemperière, Guy; Raveton, Muriel

    2007-01-01

    Background Malaria was endemic in the Rhône-Alpes area of eastern France in the 19th century and life expectancy was particularly shortened in Alpine valleys. This study was designed to determine how the disease affected people in the area and to identify the factors influencing malaria transmission. Methods Demographic data of the 19th century were collected from death registers of eight villages of the flood-plain of the river Isère. Correlations were performed between these demographic data and reconstructed meteorological data. Archive documents from medical practitioners gave information on symptoms of ill people. Engineer reports provided information on the hydraulic project developments in the Isère valley. Results Description of fevers was highly suggestive of endemic malaria transmission in the parishes neighbouring the river Isère. The current status of anopheline mosquitoes in the area supports this hypothesis. Mean temperature and precipitation were poorly correlated with demographic data, whereas the chronology of hydrological events correlated with fluctuations in death rates in the parishes. Conclusion Nowadays, most of the river development projects involve the creation of wet areas, enabling controlled flooding events. Flood-flow risk and the re-emergence of vector-borne diseases would probably be influenced by the climate change. The message is not to forget that human disturbance of any functioning hydrosystem has often been linked to malaria transmission in the past. PMID:17727700

  20. Cognitive and affective components of mental workload: Understanding the effects of each on human decision making behavior

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nygren, Thomas E.

    1992-01-01

    Human factors and ergonomics researchers have recognized for some time the increasing importance of understanding the role of the construct of mental workload in flight research. Current models of mental workload suggest that it is a multidimensional and complex construct, but one that has proved difficult to measure. Because of this difficulty, emphasis has usually been placed on using direct reports through subjective measures such as rating scales to assess levels of mental workload. The NASA Task Load Index (NASA/TLX, Hart and Staveland) has been shown to be a highly reliable and sensitive measure of perceived mental workload. But a problem with measures like TLX is that there is still considerable disagreement as to what it is about mental workload that these subjective measures are actually measuring. The empirical use of subjective workload measures has largely been to provide estimates of the cognitive components of the actual mental workload required for a task. However, my research suggests that these measures may, in fact have greater potential in accurately assessing the affective components of workload. That is, for example, TLX may be more likely to assess the positive and negative feelings associated with varying workload levels, which in turn may potentially influence the decision making behavior that directly bears on performance and safety issues. Pilots, for example, are often called upon to complete many complex tasks that are high in mental workload, stress, and frustration, and that have significant dynamic decision making components -- often ones that involve risk as well.

  1. Factors affecting the appreciation generated through applying human factors/ergonomics (HFE) principles to systems of work.

    PubMed

    So, R H Y; Lam, S T

    2014-01-01

    This retrospective study examined the levels of appreciation (applause) given by clients to Human Factors/Ergonomic (HFE) specialists after they have modified the systems of work. Thirteen non-academic projects were chosen because the HFE interventions involved changed the way workers work at their workplaces. Companies involved range from multi-national corporations and military organizations with thousands of employees to small trading companies with less than 10 employees. In 5 cases the HFE recommendations were fully adopted and well appreciated. In 4 they were largely ignored and not appreciated, with partial adoption and some appreciation in the other 4 cases. Three factors that predict appreciation were identified: (i) alignment between the benefits HFE can provide and the project's key performance indices; (ii) awareness of HFE among the client's senior management; and (iii) a team organization appropriate for applying HFE recommendations. Having an HFE specialist on the client's side can greatly increase levels of appreciation, but lack of such a specialist will not affect levels of appreciation. A clear contractual requirement for HFE intervention does not promote appreciation significantly, but its absence can greatly reduce levels of appreciation. These relationships are discussed using the Kano's model of quality. Means to generate greater appreciation of the benefits of HFE are discussed. PMID:23726141

  2. Making environmental assessments of biomass production systems comparable worldwide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, Markus A.; Seppelt, Ralf; Witing, Felix; Priess, Joerg A.

    2016-03-01

    Global demand for agricultural and forestry products fundamentally affects regional land-use change associated with environmental impacts (EIs) such as erosion. In contrast to aggregated global metrics such as greenhouse gas (GHG) balances, local/regional EIs of different agricultural and forestry production regions need methods which enable worldwide EI comparisons. The key aspect is to control environmental heterogeneity to reveal man-made differences of EIs between production regions. Environmental heterogeneity is the variation in biotic and abiotic environmental conditions. In the present study, we used three approaches to control environmental heterogeneity: (i) environmental stratification, (ii) potential natural vegetation (PNV), and (iii) regional environmental thresholds to compare EIs of solid biomass production. We compared production regions of managed forests and plantation forests in subtropical (Satilla watershed, Southeastern US), tropical (Rufiji basin, Tanzania), and temperate (Mulde watershed, Central Germany) climates. All approaches supported the comparison of the EIs of different land-use classes between and within production regions. They also standardized the different EIs for a comparison between the EI categories. The EIs for different land-use classes within a production region decreased with increasing degree of naturalness (forest, plantation forestry, and cropland). PNV was the most reliable approach, but lacked feasibility and relevance. The PNV approach explicitly included most of the factors that drive environmental heterogeneity in contrast to the stratification and threshold approaches. The stratification approach allows consistent global application due to available data. Regional environmental thresholds only included arbitrarily selected aspects of environmental heterogeneity; they are only available for few EIs. Especially, the PNV and stratification approaches are options to compare regional EIs of biomass or crop production

  3. Sharka epidemiology and worldwide management strategies: learning lessons to optimize disease control in perennial plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Many plant epidemics that cause major economic losses cannot be controlled with pesticides. Among them, sharka epidemics severely affect prunus trees worldwide. Its causal agent, Plum pox virus (PPV;, genus Potyvirus), has been classified as a quarantine pathogen in numerous countries. As a result, ...

  4. Bridges from affect to language. Comment on "The quartet theory of human emotions: An integrative and neurofunctional model" by S. Koelsch et al.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmidtke, David S.; Aryani, Arash

    2015-06-01

    The comprehensive Quartet Theory of Human Emotions proposed by Koelsch et al. [4] offers an exceptional synopsis regarding major developments in affective neuroscience, encompassing classical data based on animal studies as well as emotions generally classified as uniquely human. In doing so, it becomes apparent that while general anatomical grounds appear well covered mainly based on animal studies, neuroanatomical underpinnings of interactions between emotion and language may not be readily understood.

  5. How will HPV vaccines affect cervical cancer?

    PubMed Central

    Roden, Richard; Wu, T.-C.

    2011-01-01

    Cancer of the uterine cervix is the second largest cause of cancer deaths in women, and its toll is greatest in populations that lack screening programmes to detect precursor lesions. Persistent infection with ‘high risk’ genotypes of human papillomavirus (HPV) is necessary, although not sufficient, to cause cervical carcinoma. Therefore, HPV vaccination provides an opportunity to profoundly affect cervical cancer incidence worldwide. A recently licensed HPV subunit vaccine protects women from a high proportion of precursor lesions of cervical carcinoma and most genital warts. Here we examine the ramifications and remaining questions that surround preventive HPV vaccines. PMID:16990853

  6. Measuring human rights violations in a conflict-affected country: results from a nationwide cluster survey in Central African Republic

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Measuring human rights violations is particularly challenging during or after armed conflict. A recent nationwide survey in the Central African Republic produced estimates of rates of grave violations against children and adults affected by armed conflict, using an approach known as the "Neighborhood Method". Methods In June and July, 2009, a random household survey was conducted based on population estimates from the 2003 national census. Clusters were assigned systematically proportional to population size. Respondents in randomly selected households were interviewed regarding incidents of killing, intentional injury, recruitment into armed groups, abduction, sexual abuse and rape between January 1, 2008 and the date of interview, occurring in their homes' and those of their three closest neighbors. Results Sixty of the selected 69 clusters were surveyed. In total, 599 women were interviewed about events in 2,370 households representing 13,669 persons. Estimates of annual rates of each violation occurring per 1000 people in each of two strata are provided for children between the ages of five and 17, adults 18 years of age and older and the entire population five years and older, along with a combined and weighted national rate. The national rates for children age five to 17 were estimated to be 0.98/1000/year (95% CI: 0.18 - 1.78) for recruitment, 2.56/1000/year (95% CI: 1.50 - 3.62) for abduction, 1.13/1000/year (95% CI: 0.33 - 1.93) for intentional injury, 10.72/1000 girls/year (95% CI: 7.40 - 14.04) for rape, and 4.80/1000 girls/year (95% CI: 2.61 - 6.00) for sexual abuse. No reports of any violation against a person under the age of five were recorded and there were no reports of rape or sexual abuse of males. No children were reported to have been killed during the recall period. Rape and abduction were the most frequently reported events. Conclusions The population-based figures greatly augment existing information on human rights violations in

  7. Access to effective antimicrobials: a worldwide challenge.

    PubMed

    Laxminarayan, Ramanan; Matsoso, Precious; Pant, Suraj; Brower, Charles; Røttingen, John-Arne; Klugman, Keith; Davies, Sally

    2016-01-01

    Recent years have seen substantial improvements in life expectancy and access to antimicrobials, especially in low-income and lower-middle-income countries, but increasing pathogen resistance to antimicrobials threatens to roll back this progress. Resistant organisms in health-care and community settings pose a threat to survival rates from serious infections, including neonatal sepsis and health-care-associated infections, and limit the potential health benefits from surgeries, transplants, and cancer treatment. The challenge of simultaneously expanding appropriate access to antimicrobials, while restricting inappropriate access, particularly to expensive, newer generation antimicrobials, is unique in global health and requires new approaches to financing and delivering health care and a one-health perspective on the connections between pathogen transmission in animals and humans. Here, we describe the importance of effective antimicrobials. We assess the disease burden caused by limited access to antimicrobials, attributable to resistance to antimicrobials, and the potential effect of vaccines in restricting the need for antibiotics. PMID:26603918

  8. Regulation of Sulphur Assimilation Is Essential for Virulence and Affects Iron Homeostasis of the Human-Pathogenic Mould Aspergillus fumigatus

    PubMed Central

    Amich, Jorge; Schafferer, Lukas; Haas, Hubertus; Krappmann, Sven

    2013-01-01

    Sulphur is an essential element that all pathogens have to absorb from their surroundings in order to grow inside their infected host. Despite its importance, the relevance of sulphur assimilation in fungal virulence is largely unexplored. Here we report a role of the bZIP transcription factor MetR in sulphur assimilation and virulence of the human pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus. The MetR regulator is essential for growth on a variety of sulphur sources; remarkably, it is fundamental for assimilation of inorganic S-sources but dispensable for utilization of methionine. Accordingly, it strongly supports expression of genes directly related to inorganic sulphur assimilation but not of genes connected to methionine metabolism. On a broader scale, MetR orchestrates the comprehensive transcriptional adaptation to sulphur-starving conditions as demonstrated by digital gene expression analysis. Surprisingly, A. fumigatus is able to utilize volatile sulphur compounds produced by its methionine catabolism, a process that has not been described before and that is MetR-dependent. The A. fumigatus MetR transcriptional activator is important for virulence in both leukopenic mice and an alternative mini-host model of aspergillosis, as it was essential for the development of pulmonary aspergillosis and supported the systemic dissemination of the fungus. MetR action under sulphur-starving conditions is further required for proper iron regulation, which links regulation of sulphur metabolism to iron homeostasis and demonstrates an unprecedented regulatory crosstalk. Taken together, this study provides evidence that regulation of sulphur assimilation is not only crucial for A. fumigatus virulence but also affects the balance of iron in this prime opportunistic pathogen. PMID:24009505

  9. 3-Bromopyruvate induces rapid human prostate cancer cell death by affecting cell energy metabolism, GSH pool and the glyoxalase system.

    PubMed

    Valenti, Daniela; Vacca, Rosa A; de Bari, Lidia

    2015-12-01

    3-bromopyruvate (3-BP) is an anti-tumour drug effective on hepatocellular carcinoma and other tumour cell types, which affects both glycolytic and mitochondrial targets, depleting cellular ATP pool. Here we tested 3-BP on human prostate cancer cells showing, differently from other tumour types, efficient ATP production and functional mitochondrial metabolism. We found that 3-BP rapidly induced cultured androgen-insensitive (PC-3) and androgen-responsive (LNCaP) prostate cancer cell death at low concentrations (IC(50) values of 50 and 70 μM, respectively) with a multimodal mechanism of action. In particular, 3-BP-treated PC-3 cells showed a selective, strong reduction of glyceraldeide 3-phosphate dehydrogenase activity, due to the direct interaction of the drug with the enzyme. Moreover, 3-BP strongly impaired both glutamate/malate- and succinate-dependent mitochondrial respiration, membrane potential generation and ATP synthesis, concomitant with the inhibition of respiratory chain complex I, II and ATP synthase activities. The drastic reduction of cellular ATP levels and depletion of GSH pool, associated with significant increase in cell oxidative stress, were found after 3-BP treatment of PC-3 cells. Interestingly, the activity of both glyoxalase I and II, devoted to the elimination of the cytotoxic methylglyoxal, was strongly inhibited by 3-BP. Both N-acetylcysteine and aminoguanidine, GSH precursor and methylglyoxal scavenger, respectively, prevented 3-BP-induced PC-3 cell death, showing that impaired cell antioxidant and detoxifying capacities are crucial events leading to cell death. The provided information on the multi-target cytotoxic action of 3-BP, finally leading to PC-3 cell necrosis, might be useful for future development of 3-BP as a therapeutic option for prostate cancer treatment. PMID:26530987

  10. Epimerization of Green Tea Catechins During Brewing Does Not Affect the Ability to Poison Human Type II Topoisomerases

    PubMed Central

    Timmel, M. Anne; Byl, Jo Ann W.; Osheroff, Neil

    2013-01-01

    (−)-Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is the most abundant and biologically active polyphenol in green tea (Camellia sinensis) leaves and many of its cellular effects are consistent with its actions as a topoisomerase II poison. In contrast to genistein and several other related bioflavonoids that act as interfacial poisons, EGCG was the first bioflavonoid shown to act as a covalent topoisomerase II poison. Although studies routinely examine the effects of dietary phytochemicals on enzyme and cellular systems, they often fail to consider that many compounds are altered during cooking or cellular metabolism. To this point, the majority of EGCG (and related catechins) in green tea leaves is epimerized during the brewing process. Epimerization reverses the stereochemistry of the bond that bridges the B- and C-rings, and converts EGCG to (−)-gallocatechin gallate (GCG). Consequently, a significant proportion of EGCG that is ingested during the consumption of green tea is actually GCG. Therefore, the effects of GCG and related epimerized green tea catechins on human topoisomerase IIα and IIβ were characterized. GCG increased levels of DNA cleavage mediated by both enzyme isoforms with an activity that was similar to that of EGCG. GCG acted primarily by inhibiting the ability of topoisomerase IIα and IIβ to ligate cleaved DNA. Several lines of evidence indicate that GCG functions as a covalent topoisomerase II poison that adducts the enzyme. Finally, epimerization did not affect the reactivity of the chemical substituents (the three hydroxyl groups on the Bring) that were required for enzyme poisoning. Thus, the activity of covalent topoisomerase II poisons appears to be less sensitive to stereochemical changes than interfacial poisons. PMID:23514406

  11. Serum From Advanced Heart Failure Patients Promotes Angiogenic Sprouting and Affects the Notch Pathway in Human Endothelial Cells.

    PubMed

    Pannella, Micaela; Caliceti, Cristiana; Fortini, Francesca; Aquila, Giorgio; Vieceli Dalla Sega, Francesco; Pannuti, Antonio; Fortini, Cinzia; Morelli, Marco Bruno; Fucili, Alessandro; Francolini, Gloria; Voltan, Rebecca; Secchiero, Paola; Dinelli, Giovanni; Leoncini, Emanuela; Ferracin, Manuela; Hrelia, Silvana; Miele, Lucio; Rizzo, Paola

    2016-12-01

    It is unknown whether components present in heart failure (HF) patients' serum provide an angiogenic stimulus. We sought to determine whether serum from HF patients affects angiogenesis and its major modulator, the Notch pathway, in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). In cells treated with serum from healthy subjects or from patients at different HF stage we determined: (1) Sprouting angiogenesis, by measuring cells network (closed tubes) in collagen gel. (2) Protein levels of Notch receptors 1, 2, 4, and ligands Jagged1, Delta-like4. We found a higher number of closed tubes in HUVECs treated with advanced HF patients serum in comparison with cells treated with serum from mild HF patients or controls. Furthermore, as indicated by the reduction of the active form of Notch4 (N4IC) and of Jagged1, advanced HF patients serum inhibited Notch signalling in HUVECs in comparison with mild HF patients' serum and controls. The circulating levels of NT-proBNP (N-terminal of the pro-hormone brain natriuretic peptide), a marker for the detection and evalutation of HF, were positively correlated with the number of closed tubes (r = 0.485) and negatively with Notch4IC and Jagged1 levels in sera-treated cells (r = -0.526 and r = -0.604, respectively). In conclusion, we found that sera from advanced HF patients promote sprouting angiogenesis and dysregulate Notch signaling in HUVECs. Our study provides in vitro evidence of an angiogenic stimulus arising during HF progression and suggests a role for the Notch pathway in it. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 2700-2710, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26987674

  12. In vivo activity of epoxide hydrolase according to sequence variation affects the progression of human IgA nephropathy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jung Pyo; Yang, Seung Hee; Kim, Dong Ki; Lee, Hajeong; Kim, Bora; Cho, Joo-Youn; Yu, Kyung-Sang; Paik, Jin Ho; Kim, Myounghee; Lim, Chun Soo; Kim, Yon Su

    2011-06-01

    Epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (EET) regulates the functional integrity of the endothelium. It is hypothesized that the activity of epoxide hydrolase (EPHX2), which determines EET concentration through hydrolysis, may affect the progression of glomerulonephritis. Here, we evaluated the relationship between genetic variations, the in vivo activity of EPHX2, and progression of IgA nephropathy (IgAN). Three single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) [rs41507953 (K55R), rs751141 (R287Q), and rs1042032] were traced in 401 IgAN patients and 402 normal healthy controls. The in vivo activity of EPHX2 was assessed by measuring substrates/metabolites of the enzyme. None of the polymorphism frequencies differed significantly between patients and controls. However, patients carrying the variant allele (A) of rs751141 possessed better kidney survival than those with the wild-type allele (G; P < 0.001). This association remained significant after adjustment for several risk factors (hazard ratio 1.83, 95% confidence interval 1.13-2.96, P = 0.014). Vascular damage was more prominent in kidney biopsies from patients carrying the G allele of rs751141. The in vivo activity of EPHX2, assessed by the epoxyoctadecenoic acid/dihydroxyoctadecenoic acid ratio using liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry analysis, was elevated in patients with the G allele. The expression of EPHX2 in the human kidney was independent of the sequence variation of the rs751141 allele. Variant rs41507953 was not present in this cohort, and rs1042032 was not associated with progression. Thus the specific measures which regulate EPHX2 activity should be designed for potential therapeutics. PMID:21429967

  13. Do recreational activities affect coastal biodiversity?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riera, Rodrigo; Menci, Cristiano; Sanabria-Fernández, José Antonio; Becerro, Mikel A.

    2016-09-01

    Human activities are largely affecting coastal communities worldwide. Recreational perturbations have been overlooked in comparison to other perturbations, yet they are potential threats to marine biodiversity. They affect coastal communities in different ways, underpinning consistent shifts in fish and invertebrates assemblages. Several sites were sampled subjected to varying effects by recreational fishermen (low and high pressure) and scuba divers (low and high) in an overpopulated Atlantic island. Non-consistent differences in ecological, trophic and functional diversity were found in coastal communities, considering both factors ("diving" and "fishing"). Multivariate analyses only showed significant differences in benthic invertebrates between intensively-dived and non-dived sites. The lack of clear trends may be explained by the depletion of coastal resources in the study area, an extensively-affected island by overfishing.

  14. Dropping dead: causes and consequences of vulture population declines worldwide.

    PubMed

    Ogada, Darcy L; Keesing, Felicia; Virani, Munir Z

    2012-02-01

    Vultures are nature's most successful scavengers, and they provide an array of ecological, economic, and cultural services. As the only known obligate scavengers, vultures are uniquely adapted to a scavenging lifestyle. Vultures' unique adaptations include soaring flight, keen eyesight, and extremely low pH levels in their stomachs. Presently, 14 of 23 (61%) vulture species worldwide are threatened with extinction, and the most rapid declines have occurred in the vulture-rich regions of Asia and Africa. The reasons for the population declines are varied, but poisoning or human persecution, or both, feature in the list of nearly every declining species. Deliberate poisoning of carnivores is likely the most widespread cause of vulture poisoning. In Asia, Gyps vultures have declined by >95% due to poisoning by the veterinary drug diclofenac, which was banned by regional governments in 2006. Human persecution of vultures has occurred for centuries, and shooting and deliberate poisoning are the most widely practiced activities. Ecological consequences of vulture declines include changes in community composition of scavengers at carcasses and an increased potential for disease transmission between mammalian scavengers at carcasses. There have been cultural and economic costs of vulture declines as well, particularly in Asia. In the wake of catastrophic vulture declines in Asia, regional governments, the international scientific and donor communities, and the media have given the crisis substantial attention. Even though the Asian vulture crisis focused attention on the plight of vultures worldwide, the situation for African vultures has received relatively little attention especially given the similar levels of population decline. While the Asian crisis has been largely linked to poisoning by diclofenac, vulture population declines in Africa have numerous causes, which have made conserving existing populations more difficult. And in Africa there has been little

  15. Rickets: concerns over the worldwide increase.

    PubMed

    Lowdon, Jacqui

    2011-01-01

    Rickets is a childhood disease that causes a softening of the bones, potentially leading to fractures and deformity. Eighty years ago it was thought to have largely been eradicated from the U.K. However a recent increase in cases of rickets, not just in Britain but around the world, has proven this isn't the case. Today the disease affects children from all types of socio-economic backgrounds, not just the poorer ones, and it is primarily caused by low levels of vitamin D and certain foods. In January 2011 the government's chief medical officer Dame Sally Davies recommended all children aged six months to five should be given vitamin D supplements, particularly during winter months when natural sunshine is limited. The irony is that the advice in recent years for children to wear a high factor sunscreen and remain covered up while playing outdoors are partly felt to be behind the reason for its re-emergence. Parents and health professionals alike were shocked when it was revealed that a school girl living on the Isle of Wight developed rickets precisely because of her mother's vigilance at following sun safety rules. NICE, in their latest report (Jan 2011) stated that: "Exposure to the sun has a number of benefits. For example, it increases people's sense of wellbeing, allows them to synthesise vitamin D and provides opportunities for physical activity". A tendency for children to stay indoors and watch TV or play on computer games, rather than play outside when the sun is shining, is arguably also another contributing factor. PMID:21678784

  16. Worldwide trends in battery separator technology and usage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weighall, M. J.

    This paper reviews trends in battery separator usage for starting-lighting-and-ignition (SLI), motive power, and sealed valve-regulated lead/acid batteries. For SLI batteries, the dominant trend in the USA and Western Europe has been a dramatic increase in polyethylene envelope separator usage, with other countries now following this trend. This is at the expense of traditional leaf-type separators such as cellulose or sintered polyvinyl chloride (PVC). For motive power applications, several different types of separator materials are currently favoured, including polyethylene, microporous rubber, microporous PVC and resin-impregnated polyester fibres. Worldwide trends in the motive power battery and separator market are shown. For sealed valve-regulated lead/acid batteries, the favoured construction uses a recombinant battery separator mat, normally of 100% borosilicate glass (binder free). Alternative mats containing a proportion of polymeric fibres are now being investigated. Market trends and factors affecting growth in the use of recombinant battery separator mats (RBSM) are reviewed. Results of mercury-intrusion porosimetry data for different separator materials are shown and reviewed. This technique provides an interesting way of differentiating between different separator materials based on their pore size distribution.

  17. Carbonate reservoir plays in the South Atlantic and worldwide analogs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohriak, Webster

    2015-04-01

    This work presents a summary of the geological, geophysical and petrophysical challenges for interpretation of post-salt and presalt carbonate rocks that constitute one of the main reservoirs in the hydrocarbon accumulations in the South Atlantic, particularly in the Campos and Santos basins offshore Brazil and in the Angola -Gabon conjugate margins. Carbonate rocks associated with salt tectonics constitute one of the main exploratory plays in several basins worldwide, and recently have yielded large petroleum discoveries in the southeastern Brazilian continental margin (Santos Basin) and also in Angola (Kwanza Basin) . The presalt microbialite reservoirs are sealed by evaporites and the origin of these rocks is still controversial. One current of interpretation assumes they are associated with reefs and carbonate buildups formed during periods of sea-level rises in a desiccating basin. Other currents of interpretation assume that these rocks might be associated with hydrothermal fluids and chemical precipitation of carbonates in a basin affected by volcanic episodes, resulting in travertine deposits with secondary biogenic growth. We present examples of post-salt oil fields involving Albian carbonates in the South Atlantic, and also discuss the presalt plays recently drilled in ultradeep waters. The presalt carbonate reservoirs are compared with possible microbialite analogs in the sedimentary basins of Brazil dating from Neoproterozoic to Recent, and their similarities and differences in terms of depositional setting and petrophysical parameters from the Late Aptian presalt carbonate rocks that have been sampled in the Santos and Kwanza basins.

  18. How Labor Management Relations and Human Resource Policies Affect the Process of Teacher Assignment in Urban School Districts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Youngs, Peter; Pogodzinski, Ben; Galey, Sarah

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined how labor-management relations between school districts and teacher associations seem to affect teacher contract provisions regarding the role of seniority in teacher assignment and how contract provisions and teacher assignment policies seem to affect beginning teachers' perceptions about their work environments.…

  19. Worldwide Estimates Relative to Five Continental-Scale Populations

    PubMed Central

    Steele, Christopher D; Court, Denise Syndercombe; Balding, David J

    2014-01-01

    We estimate the population genetics parameter (also referred to as the fixation index) from short tandem repeat (STR) allele frequencies, comparing many worldwide human subpopulations at approximately the national level with continental-scale populations. is commonly used to measure population differentiation, and is important in forensic DNA analysis to account for remote shared ancestry between a suspect and an alternative source of the DNA. We estimate comparing subpopulations with a hypothetical ancestral population, which is the approach most widely used in population genetics, and also compare a subpopulation with a sampled reference population, which is more appropriate for forensic applications. Both estimation methods are likelihood-based, in which is related to the variance of the multinomial-Dirichlet distribution for allele counts. Overall, we find low values, with posterior 97.5 percentiles when comparing a subpopulation with the most appropriate population, and even for inter-population comparisons we find . These are much smaller than single nucleotide polymorphism-based inter-continental estimates, and are also about half the magnitude of STR-based estimates from population genetics surveys that focus on distinct ethnic groups rather than a general population. Our findings support the use of up to 3% in forensic calculations, which corresponds to some current practice. PMID:26460400

  20. Auditory pre-experience modulates classification of affect intensity: evidence for the evaluation of call salience by a non-human mammal, the bat Megaderma lyra

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Immediate responses towards emotional utterances in humans are determined by the acoustic structure and perceived relevance, i.e. salience, of the stimuli, and are controlled via a central feedback taking into account acoustic pre-experience. The present study explores whether the evaluation of stimulus salience in the acoustic communication of emotions is specifically human or has precursors in mammals. We created different pre-experiences by habituating bats (Megaderma lyra) to stimuli based on aggression, and response, calls from high or low intensity level agonistic interactions, respectively. Then we presented a test stimulus of opposite affect intensity of the same call type. We compared the modulation of response behaviour by affect intensity between the reciprocal experiments. Results For aggression call stimuli, the bats responded to the dishabituation stimuli independent of affect intensity, emphasising the attention-grabbing function of this call type. For response call stimuli, the bats responded to a high affect intensity test stimulus after experiencing stimuli of low affect intensity, but transferred habituation to a low affect intensity test stimulus after experiencing stimuli of high affect intensity. This transfer of habituation was not due to over-habituation as the bats responded to a frequency-shifted control stimulus. A direct comparison confirmed the asymmetric response behaviour in the reciprocal experiments. Conclusions Thus, the present study provides not only evidence for a discrimination of affect intensity, but also for an evaluation of stimulus salience, suggesting that basic assessment mechanisms involved in the perception of emotion are an ancestral trait in mammals. PMID:24341839

  1. Familial Dysautonomia (FD) Human Embryonic Stem Cell Derived PNS Neurons Reveal that Synaptic Vesicular and Neuronal Transport Genes Are Directly or Indirectly Affected by IKBKAP Downregulation

    PubMed Central

    Kantor, Gal; Cheishvili, David; Even, Aviel; Birger, Anastasya; Turetsky, Tikva; Gil, Yaniv; Even-Ram, Sharona; Aizenman, Einat; Bashir, Nibal; Maayan, Channa; Razin, Aharon; Reubinoff, Benjamim E.; Weil, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    A splicing mutation in the IKBKAP gene causes Familial Dysautonomia (FD), affecting the IKAP protein expression levels and proper development and function of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Here we found new molecular insights for the IKAP role and the impact of the FD mutation in the human PNS lineage by using a novel and unique human embryonic stem cell (hESC) line homozygous to the FD mutation originated by pre implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) analysis. We found that IKBKAP downregulation during PNS differentiation affects normal migration in FD-hESC derived neural crest cells (NCC) while at later stages the PNS neurons show reduced intracellular colocalization between vesicular proteins and IKAP. Comparative wide transcriptome analysis of FD and WT hESC-derived neurons together with the analysis of human brains from FD and WT 12 weeks old embryos and experimental validation of the results confirmed that synaptic vesicular and neuronal transport genes are directly or indirectly affected by IKBKAP downregulation in FD neurons. Moreover we show that kinetin (a drug that corrects IKBKAP alternative splicing) promotes the recovery of IKAP expression and these IKAP functional associated genes identified in the study. Altogether, these results support the view that IKAP might be a vesicular like protein that might be involved in neuronal transport in hESC derived PNS neurons. This function seems to be mostly affected in FD-hESC derived PNS neurons probably reflecting some PNS neuronal dysfunction observed in FD. PMID:26437462

  2. Human Clay Models versus Cat Dissection: How the Similarity between the Classroom and the Exam Affects Student Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waters, John R.; Van Meter, Peggy; Perrotti, William; Drogo, Salvatore; Cyr, Richard J.

    2011-01-01

    This study examined the effect of different anatomic representations on student learning in a human anatomy class studying the muscular system. Specifically, we examined the efficacy of using dissected cats (with and without handouts) compared with clay sculpting of human structures. Ten undergraduate laboratory sections were assigned to three…

  3. Chemical form of selenium affects its uptake, transport and glutathione peroxidase activity in the human intestinal Caco-2 cell model

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Determining the effect of selenium (Se) chemical form on uptake and transport in human intestinal cells is critical to assess Se bioavailability. In the present study, we measured the uptake and transport of various Se compounds in the human intestinal Caco-2 cell model. We found that two sources...

  4. Epidermal growth factor receptor expression affects the efficacy of the combined application of saponin and a targeted toxin on human cervical carcinoma cells.

    PubMed

    Bachran, Diana; Schneider, Stefanie; Bachran, Christopher; Urban, Romy; Weng, Alexander; Melzig, Matthias F; Hoffmann, Corinna; Kaufmann, Andreas M; Fuchs, Hendrik

    2010-09-01

    Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer in women worldwide. Targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is a very promising approach since it is overexpressed in about 90% of cervical tumors. Here, we quantified the toxic effect of SE, a targeted toxin consisting of epidermal growth factor (EGF) as targeting moiety and the plant toxin saporin-3, on 3 common human cervical carcinoma cell lines (HeLa, CaSki and SiHa) and recently established lines (PHCC1 and PHCC2) from 2 different individuals. A human melanocytic and a mouse cell line served as negative control. Additionally, we combined SE with saponinum album, a saponin composite from Gypsophila paniculata, which exhibited synergistic properties in previous studies. The cell lines, except for SiHa cells, revealed high sensitivity to SE with 50% cell survival in the range of 5-24.5 nM. The combination with saponin resulted in a remarkable enhancement of cytotoxicity with enhancement factors ranging from 9,000-fold to 2,500,000-fold. The cytotoxicity of SE was clearly target receptor specific since free EGF blocks the effect and saporin-3 alone was considerably less toxic. For all cervical carcinoma cell lines, we evinced a clear correlation between EGFR expression and SE sensitivity. Our data indicate a potential use of targeted toxins for the treatment of cervical cancer. In particular, the combination with saponins is a promising approach since efficacy is drastically improved. PMID:20020492

  5. Human clay models versus cat dissection: how the similarity between the classroom and the exam affects student performance.

    PubMed

    Waters, John R; Van Meter, Peggy; Perrotti, William; Drogo, Salvatore; Cyr, Richard J

    2011-06-01

    This study examined the effect of different anatomic representations on student learning in a human anatomy class studying the muscular system. Specifically, we examined the efficacy of using dissected cats (with and without handouts) compared with clay sculpting of human structures. Ten undergraduate laboratory sections were assigned to three treatment groups: cat dissection only, cat dissection with handouts, and human clay sculpting with handouts. Exams included higher-order questions that presented novel anatomic images and scenarios that the students did not practice in class. The higher-order anatomy exam questions varied the degree to which students in the different treatments had to transform the anatomic representation studied during laboratory activities to match the representation used in the exam questions. In this respect, exam questions manipulated the similarity between the surface features of the anatomic representations used in the classroom versus the exam. When identifying anatomic structures presented in a photograph or diagram, student performance improved significantly when transformation demands decreased, i.e., students in the human clay sculpting treatment group performed best on human anatomy questions and students in the cat dissection treatment group performed better on cat anatomy questions (independent of the use of handouts). There were similar, but nonsignificant, trends when students were asked functional anatomy questions presented in human and cat contexts. On survey questions designed to measure student attitudes about dissection versus nonanimal alternatives, students typically preferred the method used in their treatment group, suggesting that student preference is too fluid to factor into curricular decisions. When designing curricula, instructors must choose anatomic representations that support their course goals. Human representations are most effective when teaching the human muscular system. PMID:21652509

  6. Differential TGFβ pathway targeting by miR-122 in humans and mice affects liver cancer metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Shenyi; Fan, Yu; Zhang, Hanshuo; Zhao, Zhihua; Hao, Yang; Li, Juan; Sun, Changhong; Yang, Junyu; Yang, Zhenjun; Yang, Xiao; Lu, Jian; Xi, Jianzhong Jeff

    2016-01-01

    Downregulation of a predominantly hepatocyte-specific miR-122 is associated with human liver cancer metastasis, whereas miR-122-deficient mice display normal liver function. Here we show a functional conservation of miR-122 in the TGFβ pathway: miR-122 target site is present in the mouse but not human TGFβR1, whereas a noncanonical target site is present in the TGFβ1 5′UTR in humans and other primates. Experimental switch of the miR-122 target between the receptor TGFβR1 and the ligand TGFβ1 changes the metastatic properties of mouse and human liver cancer cells. High expression of TGFβ1 in human primary liver tumours is associated with poor survival. We identify over 50 other miRNAs orthogonally targeting ligand/receptor pairs in humans and mice, suggesting that these are evolutionarily common events. These results reveal an evolutionary mechanism for miRNA-mediated gene regulation underlying species-specific physiological or pathological phenotype and provide a potentially valuable strategy for treating liver-associated diseases. PMID:26987776

  7. Affected Kindred Analysis of Human X Chromosome Exomes to Identify Novel X-Linked Intellectual Disability Genes

    PubMed Central

    Niranjan, Tejasvi S.; Skinner, Cindy; May, Melanie; Turner, Tychele; Rose, Rebecca; Stevenson, Roger; Schwartz, Charles E.; Wang, Tao

    2015-01-01

    X-linked Intellectual Disability (XLID) is a group of genetically heterogeneous disorders caused by mutations in genes on the X chromosome. Deleterious mutations in ~10% of X chromosome genes are implicated in causing XLID disorders in ~50% of known and suspected XLID families. The remaining XLID genes are expected to be rare and even private to individual families. To systematically identify these XLID genes, we sequenced the X chromosome exome (X-exome) in 56 well-established XLID families (a single affected male from 30 families and two affected males from 26 families) using an Agilent SureSelect X-exome kit and the Illumina HiSeq 2000 platform. To enrich for disease-causing mutations, we first utilized variant filters based on dbSNP, the male-restricted portions of the 1000 Genomes Project, or the Exome Variant Server datasets. However, these databases present limitations as automatic filters for enrichment of XLID genes. We therefore developed and optimized a strategy that uses a cohort of affected male kindred pairs and an additional small cohort of affected unrelated males to enrich for potentially pathological variants and to remove neutral variants. This strategy, which we refer to as Affected Kindred/Cross-Cohort Analysis, achieves a substantial enrichment for potentially pathological variants in known XLID genes compared to variant filters from public reference databases, and it has identified novel XLID candidate genes. We conclude that Affected Kindred/Cross-Cohort Analysis can effectively enrich for disease-causing genes in rare, Mendelian disorders, and that public reference databases can be used effectively, but cautiously, as automatic filters for X-linked disorders. PMID:25679214

  8. Reciprocal mouse and human limb phenotypes caused by gain- and loss-of-function mutations affecting Lmbr1.

    PubMed Central

    Clark, R M; Marker, P C; Roessler, E; Dutra, A; Schimenti, J C; Muenke, M; Kingsley, D M

    2001-01-01

    The major locus for dominant preaxial polydactyly in humans has been mapped to 7q36. In mice the dominant Hemimelic extra toes (Hx) and Hammertoe (Hm) mutations map to a homologous chromosomal region and cause similar limb defects. The Lmbr1 gene is entirely within the small critical intervals recently defined for both the mouse and human mutations and is misexpressed at the exact time that the mouse Hx phenotype becomes apparent during limb development. This result suggests that Lmbr1 may underlie preaxial polydactyly in both mice and humans. We have used deletion chromosomes to demonstrate that the dominant mouse and human limb defects arise from gain-of-function mutations and not from haploinsufficiency. Furthermore, we created a loss-of-function mutation in the mouse Lmbr1 gene that causes digit number reduction (oligodactyly) on its own and in trans to a deletion chromosome. The loss of digits that we observed in mice with reduced Lmbr1 activity is in contrast to the gain of digits observed in Hx mice and human polydactyly patients. Our results suggest that the Lmbr1 gene is required for limb formation and that reciprocal changes in levels of Lmbr1 activity can lead to either increases or decreases in the number of digits in the vertebrate limb. PMID:11606546

  9. InChI - the worldwide chemical structure identifier standard

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Since its public introduction in 2005 the IUPAC InChI chemical structure identifier standard has become the international, worldwide standard for defined chemical structures. This article will describe the extensive use and dissemination of the InChI and InChIKey structure representations by and for the world-wide chemistry community, the chemical information community, and major publishers and disseminators of chemical and related scientific offerings in manuscripts and databases. PMID:23343401

  10. In situ characterization of protein aggregates in human tissues affected by light chain amyloidosis: a FTIR microspectroscopy study.

    PubMed

    Ami, Diletta; Lavatelli, Francesca; Rognoni, Paola; Palladini, Giovanni; Raimondi, Sara; Giorgetti, Sofia; Monti, Luca; Doglia, Silvia Maria; Natalello, Antonino; Merlini, Giampaolo

    2016-01-01

    Light chain (AL) amyloidosis, caused by deposition of amyloidogenic immunoglobulin light chains (LCs), is the most common systemic form in industrialized countries. Still open questions, and premises for developing targeted therapies, concern the mechanisms of amyloid formation in vivo and the bases of organ targeting and dysfunction. Investigating amyloid material in its natural environment is crucial to obtain new insights on the molecular features of fibrillar deposits at individual level. To this aim, we used Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) microspectroscopy for studying in situ unfixed tissues (heart and subcutaneous abdominal fat) from patients affected by AL amyloidosis. We compared the infrared response of affected tissues with that of ex vivo and in vitro fibrils obtained from the pathogenic LC derived from one patient, as well as with that of non amyloid-affected tissues. We demonstrated that the IR marker band of intermolecular β-sheets, typical of protein aggregates, can be detected in situ in LC amyloid-affected tissues, and that FTIR microspectroscopy allows exploring the inter- and intra-sample heterogeneity. We extended the infrared analysis to the characterization of other biomolecules embedded within the amyloid deposits, finding an IR pattern that discloses a possible role of lipids, collagen and glycosaminoglycans in amyloid deposition in vivo. PMID:27373200

  11. In situ characterization of protein aggregates in human tissues affected by light chain amyloidosis: a FTIR microspectroscopy study

    PubMed Central

    Ami, Diletta; Lavatelli, Francesca; Rognoni, Paola; Palladini, Giovanni; Raimondi, Sara; Giorgetti, Sofia; Monti, Luca; Doglia, Silvia Maria; Natalello, Antonino; Merlini, Giampaolo

    2016-01-01

    Light chain (AL) amyloidosis, caused by deposition of amyloidogenic immunoglobulin light chains (LCs), is the most common systemic form in industrialized countries. Still open questions, and premises for developing targeted therapies, concern the mechanisms of amyloid formation in vivo and the bases of organ targeting and dysfunction. Investigating amyloid material in its natural environment is crucial to obtain new insights on the molecular features of fibrillar deposits at individual level. To this aim, we used Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) microspectroscopy for studying in situ unfixed tissues (heart and subcutaneous abdominal fat) from patients affected by AL amyloidosis. We compared the infrared response of affected tissues with that of ex vivo and in vitro fibrils obtained from the pathogenic LC derived from one patient, as well as with that of non amyloid-affected tissues. We demonstrated that the IR marker band of intermolecular β-sheets, typical of protein aggregates, can be detected in situ in LC amyloid-affected tissues, and that FTIR microspectroscopy allows exploring the inter- and intra-sample heterogeneity. We extended the infrared analysis to the characterization of other biomolecules embedded within the amyloid deposits, finding an IR pattern that discloses a possible role of lipids, collagen and glycosaminoglycans in amyloid deposition in vivo. PMID:27373200

  12. Does vegetation complexity affect host plant chemistry, and thus multitrophic interactions, in a human-altered landscape?

    PubMed

    Wäschke, Nicole; Hancock, Christine; Hilker, Monika; Obermaier, Elisabeth; Meiners, Torsten

    2015-09-01

    Anthropogenic land use may shape vegetation composition and affect trophic interactions by altering concentrations of host plant metabolites. Here, we investigated the hypotheses that: (1) plant N and defensive secondary metabolite contents of the herb Plantago lanceolata are affected by land use intensity (LUI) and the surrounding vegetation composition (=plant species richness and P. lanceolata density), and that (2) changes in plant chemistry affect abundances of the herbivorous weevils Mecinus pascuorum and Mecinus labilis, as well as their larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus, in the field. We determined plant species richness, P. lanceolata density, and abundances of the herbivores and the parasitoid in 77 grassland plots differing in LUI index in three regions across Germany. We also measured the N and secondary metabolite [the iridoid glycosides (IGs) aucubin and catalpol] contents of P. lanceolata leaves. Mixed-model analysis revealed that: (1) concentrations of leaf IGs were positively correlated with plant species richness; leaf N content was positively correlated with the LUI index. Furthermore: (2) herbivore abundance was not related to IG concentrations, but correlated negatively with leaf N content. Parasitoid abundance correlated positively only with host abundance over the three regions. Structural equation models revealed a positive impact of IG concentrations on parasitoid abundance in one region. We conclude that changes in plant chemistry due to land use and/or vegetation composition may affect higher trophic levels and that the manifestation of these effects may depend on local biotic or abiotic features of the landscape. PMID:25986560

  13. The Brain Basis of Positive and Negative Affect: Evidence from a Meta-Analysis of the Human Neuroimaging Literature.

    PubMed

    Lindquist, Kristen A; Satpute, Ajay B; Wager, Tor D; Weber, Jochen; Barrett, Lisa Feldman

    2016-05-01

    The ability to experience pleasant or unpleasant feelings or to represent objects as "positive" or "negative" is known as representing hedonic "valence." Although scientists overwhelmingly agree that valence is a basic psychological phenomenon, debate continues about how to best conceptualize it scientifically. We used a meta-analysis of 397 functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and positron emission tomography studies (containing 914 experimental contrasts and 6827 participants) to test 3 competing hypotheses about the brain basis of valence: the bipolarity hypothesis that positive and negative affect are supported by a brain system that monotonically increases and/or decreases along the valence dimension, the bivalent hypothesis that positive and negative affect are supported by independent brain systems, and the affective workspace hypothesis that positive and negative affect are supported by a flexible set of valence-general regions. We found little evidence for the bipolar or bivalent hypotheses. Findings instead supported the hypothesis that, at the level of brain activity measurable by fMRI, valence is flexibly implemented across instances by a set of valence-general limbic and paralimbic brain regions. PMID:25631056

  14. Xenopus pax6 mutants affect eye development and other organ systems, and have phenotypic similarities to human aniridia patients.

    PubMed

    Nakayama, Takuya; Fisher, Marilyn; Nakajima, Keisuke; Odeleye, Akinleye O; Zimmerman, Keith B; Fish, Margaret B; Yaoita, Yoshio; Chojnowski, Jena L; Lauderdale, James D; Netland, Peter A; Grainger, Robert M

    2015-12-15

    Mutations in the Pax6 gene cause ocular defects in both vertebrate and invertebrate animal species, and the disease aniridia in humans. Despite extensive experimentation on this gene in multiple species, including humans, we still do not understand the earliest effects on development mediated by this gene. This prompted us to develop pax6 mutant lines in Xenopus tropicalis taking advantage of the utility of the Xenopus system for examining early development and in addition to establish a model for studying the human disease aniridia in an accessible lower vertebrate. We have generated mutants in pax6 by using Transcription Activator-Like Effector Nuclease (TALEN) constructs for gene editing in X. tropicalis. Embryos with putative null mutations show severe eye abnormalities and changes in brain development, as assessed by changes in morphology and gene expression. One gene that we found is downregulated very early in development in these pax6 mutants is myc, a gene involved in pluripotency and progenitor cell maintenance and likely a mediator of some key pax6 functions in the embryo. Changes in gene expression in the developing brain and pancreas reflect other important functions of pax6 during development. In mutations with partial loss of pax6 function eye development is initially relatively normal but froglets show an underdeveloped iris, similar to the classic phenotype (aniridia) seen in human patients with PAX6 mutations. Other eye abnormalities observed in these froglets, including cataracts and corneal defects, are also common in human aniridia. The frog model thus allows us to examine the earliest deficits in eye formation as a result of pax6 lesions, and provides a useful model for understanding the developmental basis for the aniridia phenotype seen in humans. PMID:25724657

  15. Psychophysiological and other factors affecting human performance in accident prevention and investigation. [Comparison of aviation with other industries

    SciTech Connect

    Klinestiver, L.R.

    1980-01-01

    Psychophysiological factors are not uncommon terms in the aviation incident/accident investigation sequence where human error is involved. It is highly suspect that the same psychophysiological factors may also exist in the industrial arena where operator personnel function; but, there is little evidence in literature indicating how management and subordinates cope with these factors to prevent or reduce accidents. It is apparent that human factors psychophysological training is quite evident in the aviation industry. However, while the industrial arena appears to analyze psychophysiological factors in accident investigations, there is little evidence that established training programs exist for supervisors and operator personnel.

  16. Federal Administrative Law--Privacy, Freedom of Information and Protection of Human Subjects--Affecting Educational Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weinberger, JoAnn

    Since 1972, the issue of human rights protection has grown in complexity and intensity. Congress has passed four laws: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974; Freedom of Information Act, as amended; Privacy Act of 1974; and National Research Act of 1974. From 1971-1980, the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (DHEW) and then the…

  17. Dogs and Opossums Positive for Vaccinia Virus during Outbreak Affecting Cattle and Humans, São Paulo State, Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Peres, Marina G.; Barros, Claudenice B.; Appolinário, Camila M.; Antunes, João M.A.P.; Mioni, Mateus S.R.; Bacchiega, Thais S.; Allendorf, Susan D.; Vicente, Acácia F.; Fonseca, Clóvis R.

    2016-01-01

    During a vaccinia virus (VACV) outbreak in São Paulo State, Brazil, blood samples were collected from cows, humans, other domestic animals, and wild mammals. Samples from 3 dogs and 3 opossums were positive for VACV by PCR. Results of gene sequencing yielded major questions regarding other mammalian species acting as reservoirs of VACV. PMID:26812352

  18. Human residential status and habitat quality affect the likelihood but not the success of lapwing breeding in an urban matrix.

    PubMed

    Roche, Dylan V; Cardilini, Adam P A; Lees, Daniel; Maguire, Grainne S; Dann, Peter; Sherman, Craig D H; Weston, Michael A

    2016-06-15

    Wildlife living in the suburbs faces the challenge of dealing with human presence and yard management (including the occurrence of pets) which vary at the scale of the house block. This study examined the influence of ecological factors (e.g. extent of grass and food availability) and anthropogenic factors (e.g. human activity and garden usage) on breeding site choice and reproductive success of the ground-nesting masked lapwing Vanellus miles on Phillip Island, Australia. Lapwings nested less frequently in residential properties (high levels of human usage) compared with vacant blocks and holiday houses. They were also more likely to breed on properties with high food availability and larger areas of grass. None of these variables influenced clutch size or the probability of eggs hatching, although larger clutches and higher hatching rates tended to be associated with more food. This study shows that, for an urban exploiting species, habitat quality is not homogenous at the scale of the house block, and that human activity is avoided by a species generally considered highly tolerant of people. PMID:26971220

  19. Dogs and Opossums Positive for Vaccinia Virus during Outbreak Affecting Cattle and Humans, São Paulo State, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Peres, Marina G; Barros, Claudenice B; Appolinário, Camila M; Antunes, João M A P; Mioni, Mateus S R; Bacchiega, Thais S; Allendorf, Susan D; Vicente, Acácia F; Fonseca, Clóvis R; Megid, Jane

    2016-02-01

    During a vaccinia virus (VACV) outbreak in São Paulo State, Brazil, blood samples were collected from cows, humans, other domestic animals, and wild mammals. Samples from 3 dogs and 3 opossums were positive for VACV by PCR. Results of gene sequencing yielded major questions regarding other mammalian species acting as reservoirs of VACV. PMID:26812352

  20. Intravital multiphoton tomography as a novel tool for non-invasive in vivo analysis of human skin affected with atopic dermatitis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huck, Volker; Gorzelanny, Christian; Thomas, Kai; Niemeyer, Verena; Luger, Thomas A.; König, Karsten; Schneider, Stefan W.

    2010-02-01

    Atopic Dermatitis (AD) is an inflammatory disease of human skin. Its pathogenesis is still unknown; however, dysfunctions of the epidermal barrier and the immune response are regarded as key factors for the development of AD. In our study we applied intravital multiphoton tomography (5D-IVT), equipped with a spectral-FLIM module for in-vivo and ex-vivo analysis of human skin affected with AD. In addition to the morphologic skin analysis, FLIM technology gain access to the metabolic status of the epidermal cells referring to the NADH specific fluorescence lifetime. We evaluated a characteristic 5D-IVT skin pattern of AD in comparison to histological sections and detected a correlation with the disease activity measured by SCORAD. FLIM analysis revealed a shift of the mean fluorescence lifetime (taum) of NADH, indicating an altered metabolic activity. Within an ex-vivo approach we have investigated cryo-sections of human skin with or without barrier defects. Spectral-FLIM allows the detection of autofluorescent signals that reflect the pathophysiological conditions of the defect skin barrier. In our study the taum value was shown to be different between healthy and affected skin. Application of the 5D-IVT allows non-invasive in-vivo imaging of human skin with a penetration depth of 150 μm. We could show that affected skin could be distinguished from healthy skin by morphological criteria, by FLIM and by spectral-FLIM. Further studies will evaluate the application of the 5D-IVT technology as a diagnostic tool and to monitor the therapeutic efficacy.

  1. The Flash Environmental Assessment Tool: worldwide first aid for chemical accidents response, pro action, prevention and preparedness.

    PubMed

    Posthuma, Leo; Wahlstrom, Emilia; Nijenhuis, René; Dijkens, Chris; de Zwart, Dick; van de Meent, Dik; Hollander, Anne; Brand, Ellen; den Hollander, Henri A; van Middelaar, Johan; van Dijk, Sander; Hall, E F; Hoffer, Sally

    2014-11-01

    The United Nations response mechanism to environmental emergencies requested a tool to support disaster assessment and coordination actions by United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) teams. The tool should support on-site decision making when substantial chemical emissions affect human health directly or via the environment and should be suitable for prioritizing impact reduction management options under challenging conditions worldwide. To answer this need, the Flash Environmental Assessment Tool (FEAT) was developed and the scientific and practical underpinning and application of this tool are described in this paper. FEAT consists of a printed decision framework and lookup tables, generated by combining the scientific data on chemicals, exposure pathways and vulnerabilities with the pragmatic needs of emergency field teams. Application of the tool yields information that can help prioritize impact reduction measures. The first years of use illustrated the usefulness of the tool as well as suggesting additional uses and improvements. An additional use is application of the back-office tool (Hazard Identification Tool, HIT), the results of which aid decision-making by the authorities of affected countries and the preparation of field teams for on-site deployment. Another extra use is in disaster pro action and prevention. In this case, the application of the tool supports safe land-use planning and improved technical design of chemical facilities. UNDAC teams are trained to use the tool after large-scale sudden onset natural disasters. PMID:24880694

  2. Variation of the Concentration of Isotopes Copper and Zinc in Human Plasmas of Patients Affected by Cancer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Triassi, Antonio

    2006-02-01

    In this paper, we demonstrate that the increase of copper and the reduction of zinc in the human plasma of patient with cancer, and in particular the Lymphoid Leukaemia, is a consequence of the isotopic constant of the enzymatic components copper/zinc dependent (DNA/RNA polymerase). Our hypothesis is that the reaction happens at the nuclear level in the human cell, and it is due to the action of a neutron (probably of deuterium of water) (J.F. Thomson, Biological Effects of Deuterium, Pergamon Press, Oxford, 1963) with the isotopic component of 64Zn transmutation into 65Cu stable following reaction: [ ^{64}Zn + N(HDO) rightarrow ^{65}Zn rightarrow beta^+ rightarrow EC rightarrow gamma rightarrow ^{65}Cu ] this produces energy of 0.325 MeV for the β+ and equal energy of 1.118 MeV for the photon γ with a half-life of 250 days.

  3. Disruption of a hydrogen bond network in human versus spider monkey cytochrome c affects heme crevice stability.

    PubMed

    Goldes, Matthew E; Jeakins-Cooley, Margaret E; McClelland, Levi J; Mou, Tung-Chung; Bowler, Bruce E

    2016-05-01

    The hypothesis that the recent rapid evolution of primate cytochromes c, which primarily involves residues in the least stable Ω-loop (Ω-loop C, residues 40-57), stabilizes the heme crevice of cytochrome c relative to other mammals, is tested. To accomplish this goal, we have compared the properties of human and spider monkey cytochrome c and a set of four variants produced in the process of converting human cytochrome c into spider monkey cytochrome c. The global stability of all variants has been measured by guanidine hydrochloride denaturation. The stability of the heme crevice has been assessed with the alkaline conformational transition. Structural insight into the effects of the five amino acid substitutions needed to convert human cytochrome c into spider monkey cytochrome c is provided by a 1.15Å resolution structure of spider monkey cytochrome c. The global stability for all variants is near 9.0kcal/mol at 25°C and pH7, which is higher than that observed for other mammalian cytochromes c. The heme crevice stability is more sensitive to the substitutions required to produce spider monkey cytochrome c with decreases of up to 0.5 units in the apparent pKa of the alkaline conformational transition relative to human cytochrome c. The structure of spider monkey cytochrome c indicates that the Y46F substitution destabilizes the heme crevice by disrupting an extensive hydrogen bond network that connects three surface loops including Ω-loop D (residues 70-85), which contains the Met80 heme ligand. PMID:26775610

  4. Functional variants regulating LGALS1 (Galectin 1) expression affect human susceptibility to influenza A(H7N9)

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yu; Zhou, Jie; Cheng, Zhongshan; Yang, Shigui; Chu, Hin; Fan, Yanhui; Li, Cun; Wong, Bosco Ho-Yin; Zheng, Shufa; Zhu, Yixin; Yu, Fei; Wang, Yiyin; Liu, Xiaoli; Gao, Hainv; Yu, Liang; Tang, Linglin; Cui, Dawei; Hao, Ke; Bossé, Yohan; Obeidat, Ma′en; Brandsma, Corry-Anke; Song, You-Qiang; To, Kelvin Kai-Wang; Sham, Pak Chung; Yuen, Kwok-Yung; Li, Lanjuan

    2015-01-01

    The fatality of avian influenza A(H7N9) infection in humans was over 30%. To identify human genetic susceptibility to A(H7N9) infection, we performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) involving 102 A(H7N9) patients and 106 heavily-exposed healthy poultry workers, a sample size critically restricted by the small number of human A(H7N9) cases. To tackle the stringent significance cutoff of GWAS, we utilized an artificial imputation program SnipSnip to improve the association signals. In single-SNP analysis, one of the top SNPs was rs13057866 of LGALS1. The artificial imputation (AI) identified three non-genotyped causal variants, which can be represented by three anchor/partner SNP pairs rs13057866/rs9622682 (AI P = 1.81 × 10−7), rs4820294/rs2899292 (2.13 × 10−7) and rs62236673/rs2899292 (4.25 × 10−7) respectively. Haplotype analysis of rs4820294 and rs2899292 could simulate the signal of a causal variant. The rs4820294/rs2899292 haplotype GG, in association with protection from A(H7N9) infection (OR = 0.26, P = 5.92 × 10−7) correlated to significantly higher levels of LGALS1 mRNA (P = 0.050) and protein expression (P = 0.025) in lymphoblast cell lines. Additionally, rs4820294 was mapped as an eQTL in human primary monocytes and lung tissues. In conclusion, functional variants of LGALS1 causing the expression variations are contributable to the differential susceptibility to influenza A(H7N9). PMID:25687228

  5. Genetic variation in a member of the laminin gene family affects variation in body composition in Drosophila and humans

    PubMed Central

    De Luca, Maria; Chambers, Michelle Moses; Casazza, Krista; Lok, Kerry H; Hunter, Gary R; Gower, Barbara A; Fernández, José R

    2008-01-01

    Background The objective of the present study was to map candidate loci influencing naturally occurring variation in triacylglycerol (TAG) storage using quantitative complementation procedures in Drosophila melanogaster. Based on our results from Drosophila, we performed a human population-based association study to investigate the effect of natural variation in LAMA5 gene on body composition in humans. Results We identified four candidate genes that contributed to differences in TAG storage between two strains of D. melanogaster, including Laminin A (LanA), which is a member of the α subfamily of laminin chains. We confirmed the effects of this gene using a viable LanA mutant and showed that female flies homozygous for the mutation had significantly lower TAG storage, body weight, and total protein content than control flies. Drosophila LanA is closely related to human LAMA5 gene, which maps to the well-replicated obesity-linkage region on chromosome 20q13.2-q13.3. We tested for association between three common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the human LAMA5 gene and variation in body composition and lipid profile traits in a cohort of unrelated women of European American (EA) and African American (AA) descent. In both ethnic groups, we found that SNP rs659822 was associated with weight (EA: P = 0.008; AA: P = 0.05) and lean mass (EA: P= 0.003; AA: P = 0.03). We also found this SNP to be associated with height (P = 0.01), total fat mass (P = 0.01), and HDL-cholesterol (P = 0.003) but only in EA women. Finally, significant associations of SNP rs944895 with serum TAG levels (P = 0.02) and HDL-cholesterol (P = 0.03) were observed in AA women. Conclusion Our results suggest an evolutionarily conserved role of a member of the laminin gene family in contributing to variation in weight and body composition. PMID:18694491

  6. The FKBP5 Gene Affects Alcohol Drinking in Knockout Mice and Is Implicated in Alcohol Drinking in Humans.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Bin; Luczak, Susan E; Wall, Tamara L; Kirchhoff, Aaron M; Xu, Yuxue; Eng, Mimy Y; Stewart, Robert B; Shou, Weinian; Boehm, Stephen L; Chester, Julia A; Yong, Weidong; Liang, Tiebing

    2016-01-01

    FKBP5 encodes FK506-binding protein 5, a glucocorticoid receptor (GR)-binding protein implicated in various psychiatric disorders and alcohol withdrawal severity. The purpose of this study is to characterize alcohol preference and related phenotypes in Fkbp5 knockout (KO) mice and to examine the role of FKBP5 in human alcohol consumption. The following experiments were performed to characterize Fkpb5 KO mice. (1) Fkbp5 KO and wild-type (WT) EtOH consumption was tested using a two-bottle choice paradigm; (2) The EtOH elimination rate was measured after intraperitoneal (IP) injection of 2.0 g/kg EtOH; (3) Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was measured after 3 h limited access of alcohol; (4) Brain region expression of Fkbp5 was identified using LacZ staining; (5) Baseline corticosterone (CORT) was assessed. Additionally, two SNPs, rs1360780 (C/T) and rs3800373 (T/G), were selected to study the association of FKBP5 with alcohol consumption in humans. Participants were college students (n = 1162) from 21-26 years of age with Chinese, Korean or Caucasian ethnicity. The results, compared to WT mice, for KO mice exhibited an increase in alcohol consumption that was not due to differences in taste sensitivity or alcohol metabolism. Higher BAC was found in KO mice after 3 h of EtOH access. Fkbp5 was highly expressed in brain regions involved in the regulation of the stress response, such as the hippocampus, amygdala, dorsal raphe and locus coeruleus. Both genotypes exhibited similar basal levels of plasma corticosterone (CORT). Finally, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in FKBP5 were found to be associated with alcohol drinking in humans. These results suggest that the association between FKBP5 and alcohol consumption is conserved in both mice and humans. PMID:27527158

  7. The FKBP5 Gene Affects Alcohol Drinking in Knockout Mice and Is Implicated in Alcohol Drinking in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Bin; Luczak, Susan E.; Wall, Tamara L.; Kirchhoff, Aaron M.; Xu, Yuxue; Eng, Mimy Y.; Stewart, Robert B.; Shou, Weinian; Boehm, Stephen L.; Chester, Julia A.; Yong, Weidong; Liang, Tiebing

    2016-01-01

    FKBP5 encodes FK506-binding protein 5, a glucocorticoid receptor (GR)-binding protein implicated in various psychiatric disorders and alcohol withdrawal severity. The purpose of this study is to characterize alcohol preference and related phenotypes in Fkbp5 knockout (KO) mice and to examine the role of FKBP5 in human alcohol consumption. The following experiments were performed to characterize Fkpb5 KO mice. (1) Fkbp5 KO and wild-type (WT) EtOH consumption was tested using a two-bottle choice paradigm; (2) The EtOH elimination rate was measured after intraperitoneal (IP) injection of 2.0 g/kg EtOH; (3) Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was measured after 3 h limited access of alcohol; (4) Brain region expression of Fkbp5 was identified using LacZ staining; (5) Baseline corticosterone (CORT) was assessed. Additionally, two SNPs, rs1360780 (C/T) and rs3800373 (T/G), were selected to study the association of FKBP5 with alcohol consumption in humans. Participants were college students (n = 1162) from 21–26 years of age with Chinese, Korean or Caucasian ethnicity. The results, compared to WT mice, for KO mice exhibited an increase in alcohol consumption that was not due to differences in taste sensitivity or alcohol metabolism. Higher BAC was found in KO mice after 3 h of EtOH access. Fkbp5 was highly expressed in brain regions involved in the regulation of the stress response, such as the hippocampus, amygdala, dorsal raphe and locus coeruleus. Both genotypes exhibited similar basal levels of plasma corticosterone (CORT). Finally, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in FKBP5 were found to be associated with alcohol drinking in humans. These results suggest that the association between FKBP5 and alcohol consumption is conserved in both mice and humans. PMID:27527158

  8. PU.1 affects proliferation of the human acute myeloid leukemia U937 cell line by directly regulating MEIS1

    PubMed Central

    ZHOU, JING; ZHANG, XIAOFENG; WANG, YUHUA; GUAN, YINGHUI

    2015-01-01

    The transcription factor PU.1 is a member of the ETS family, which is expressed in a wide variety of hematopoietic lineages. Accumulating evidence has indicated that PU.1 plays a key role in hematopoiesis, and reduced expression of PU.1 leads to the pathogenesis of human myeloid leukemia. As a multi-functional factor, PU.1 is also required for mixed lineage leukemia (MLL) stem cell potential and the development of MLL. However, the function of PU.1 in human non-MLL leukemia and its molecular mechanism remains poorly understood. In the present study, PU.1 siRNA was demonstrated to efficiently inhibit the transcription level of oncogene MEIS1 in the human acute myeloid non-MLL leukemia U937 cell line. In addition, PU.1, as a positive regulator of MEIS1, performed a crucial role in maintaining cell proliferation. Using electrophoretic mobility shift assay, chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis and luciferase reporter assay, previously unexplored evidence that PU.1 activated the MEIS1 promoter through a conserved binding motif in vitro and in vivo was further defined. Overall, the present study provides insight into the molecular mechanism of the contribution of PU.1 to the pathogenesis of non-MLL U937 cells, which is mediated by direct regulation of MEIS1 transcription. The present data reveal the possibility of developing an alternative therapy for non-MLL leukemia by targeting PU.1-mediated MEIS1 gene activation. PMID:26622774

  9. Caffeine affects the biological responses of human hematopoietic cells of myeloid lineage via downregulation of the mTOR pathway and xanthine oxidase activity

    PubMed Central

    Abooali, Maryam; Yasinska, Inna M.; Casely-Hayford, Maxwell A.; Berger, Steffen M.; Fasler-Kan, Elizaveta; Sumbayev, Vadim V.

    2015-01-01

    Correction of human myeloid cell function is crucial for the prevention of inflammatory and allergic reactions as well as leukaemia progression. Caffeine, a naturally occurring food component, is known to display anti-inflammatory effects which have previously been ascribed largely to its inhibitory actions on phosphodiesterase. However, more recent studies suggest an additional role in affecting the activity of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), a master regulator of myeloid cell translational pathways, although detailed molecular events underlying its mode of action have not been elucidated. Here, we report the cellular uptake of caffeine, without metabolisation, by healthy and malignant hematopoietic myeloid cells including monocytes, basophils and primary acute myeloid leukaemia mononuclear blasts. Unmodified caffeine downregulated mTOR signalling, which affected glycolysis and the release of pro-inflammatory/pro-angiogenic cytokines as well as other inflammatory mediators. In monocytes, the effects of caffeine were potentiated by its ability to inhibit xanthine oxidase, an enzyme which plays a central role in human purine catabolism by generating uric acid. In basophils, caffeine also increased intracellular cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) levels which further enhanced its inhibitory action on mTOR. These results demonstrate an important mode of pharmacological action of caffeine with potentially wide-ranging therapeutic impact for treating non-infectious disorders of the human immune system, where it could be applied directly to inflammatory cells. PMID:26384306

  10. Caffeine affects the biological responses of human hematopoietic cells of myeloid lineage via downregulation of the mTOR pathway and xanthine oxidase activity.

    PubMed

    Gibbs, Bernhard F; Gonçalves Silva, Isabel; Prokhorov, Alexandr; Abooali, Maryam; Yasinska, Inna M; Casely-Hayford, Maxwell A; Berger, Steffen M; Fasler-Kan, Elizaveta; Sumbayev, Vadim V

    2015-10-01

    Correction of human myeloid cell function is crucial for the prevention of inflammatory and allergic reactions as well as leukaemia progression. Caffeine, a naturally occurring food component, is known to display anti-inflammatory effects which have previously been ascribed largely to its inhibitory actions on phosphodiesterase. However, more recent studies suggest an additional role in affecting the activity of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), a master regulator of myeloid cell translational pathways, although detailed molecular events underlying its mode of action have not been elucidated. Here, we report the cellular uptake of caffeine, without metabolisation, by healthy and malignant hematopoietic myeloid cells including monocytes, basophils and primary acute myeloid leukaemia mononuclear blasts. Unmodified caffeine downregulated mTOR signalling, which affected glycolysis and the release of pro-inflammatory/pro-angiogenic cytokines as well as other inflammatory mediators. In monocytes, the effects of caffeine were potentiated by its ability to inhibit xanthine oxidase, an enzyme which plays a central role in